*BEST OF DTB #113* The Catholic Defender: Mass Processions

Posted by John Benko - November 25th, 2011

In the Old Testament, the Israelites would march behind the Ark of the Covenant. Joshua was instructed to March around the city of Jericho one time for six days.
The Soldiers of Joshua did as instructed with the seven priests carrying ram’s horns before the Ark.
On the seventh day they marched around the city seven times. The people were instructed to wait for the sound of the ram’s horns and and with this signal, they were to shout aloud.
The Lord would do the rest. The walls came tumbling down and the Israelites stormed the city and took it.
Processions were a way to show the might and power of an army, the Romans and Greeks were known for such processions. The Israelites had processions in much the same way.

2 Samuel 6:14 states, “Then David, girt with a linen apron, come dancing before the Lord with abandon, as he and all the Israelites were bringing up the ark of the Lord with shouts of joy and to the sound of the horn”.

This was a spectacular event. As a Soldier, I served as a Eucharistic Minister in the field for many years.

I remember having the Blessed Sacrament with me keeping it close to my heart as I went to conduct Catholic Communion Services in the field.

I felt like David before the Lord.

2 Kings 1:38-40 speaks of another great procession, “So Zadok the priest, Nathan the prophet, Benaiah, son of Jehoiada, and the Cherethites and Pelethites went down, and mounting Solomon on King David’s mule, escorted him to Gihon. Then Zadok the priest took the horn of oil from the tent and anointed Solomon. They blew the horn and all the people shouted, “Long live King Solomon!” Then all the people went up after him, playing flutes and rejoicing so much as to split open the earth with their shouting”.

Can you imagine such a sight? The music and sound of the people was so loud that the earth “Split open“.

This scene reminds me of another important procession! Jesus instructs two of his Apostles to go to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives with this mission, “Go into the village opposite you, and immediately you will find an ass tethered, and a colt with her. Untie them and bring them here to me. And if anyone should say anything to you, reply, ‘The master has need of them. Then he will send them at once.”

“The disciples went and did as Jesus had ordered them. They brought the ass and the colt and laid their cloaks over them, and he sat upon them. The very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and strewed them on the road. The crowds preceding him and those following kept crying out and saying: ‘Hosanna to the Son of David; blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord; hosanna in the highest’. And when he entered Jerusalem the whole city was shaken and asked, ‘Who is this?’ And the crowds replied, ‘This is Jesus the prophet, from Nazareth in Galilee.”

I see some similarities with Solomon and Jesus procession amongst the crowds of people. Solomon was a son of David, Jesus is of the linage of David.

They both led a procession as King before large crowds. With King Solomon, the sound caused the earth to split open, with Jesus, the whole city was shaken.

These scenes were victorious and spectacular. Processions were demonstrated for various reasons, militarily and for religious reasons.

I love the movie, “Ben Hur“, with Charlton Heston. The scene after saving the Roman General’s life after a sea battle, Judah Ben Hur is made a son of this Roman General.

He rides in the chariot in this major procession. These processions are much like a parade as they would show their might celebrating major victories.

It was in one such procession that St. Sebastian intercepted the Emperor Diocletian.

St. Sebastian had previously been named captain in the praetorian guards by the Emperor Diocletian.

Then Emperor Maximian also gave this appointment to St. Sebastian after Diocletian had gone to the East.

Neither of these Emperors had known that St. Sebastian was a Christian who joined the Roman Army to help the Christians from within.

When it was discovered during Maximian’s persecution of the Christians that St. Sebastian was indeed a Christian, he was ordered executed.

He was shot with arrows and left for dead, but when the widow of St. Castulus went to recover his body, she found he was still alive and nursed him back to health.

It was during a major procession that St. Sebastian intercepted the Emperor and denounced him for his cruelty to Christians.

At first the Emperor was taken back thinking St. Sebastian was a ghost, but once he regained his composure, he ordered St. Sebastian to be beaten with clubs.
Today, St. Sebastian is remembered as the Patron Saint of Athletes.

With the advent of the Catholic Faith, processions were part of the early Church.

I love the special procession where the Eucharist is taken to the streets. What a sign of Christ presence among the people.

Processions became identified in the liturgy as a sign of pilgrimage.

I have always felt that the procession of the altar boys, the crucifix, the lector with the word of God presented held high and with the Priest, this represented the echo of time as in a continued journey.

The Church, the body of Christ, marching on towards the heavenly Jerusalem.

The Mass will always begin with the procession of the priest and ministers to the altar.

The Gospel readings are honored in this procession. The gifts of bread and wine are brought forward to the altar.

The Church comes forward in procession to receive our Lord in the Eucharist.

We are all moving forward to that moment when we will all meet Christ in the New Jerusalem, the eternal Kingdom Jesus has prepared for us.

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*BEST OF DTB #111* T.U.L.I.P. It’s not only un-biblical, it’s un-Christian

Posted by John Benko - November 18th, 2011

I do not take lightly the assertion that a particular Christian denomination is actually anti-christian but the sect of Calvinism does qualify. Let me explain why Calvinism, like Mormonism or Jehovah Witnesses, does not present genuine Christianity, but an evil counterfeit.

The beliefs of the cult of Calvinism are summed up in the acronym TULIP. Let us examine what this heretical set of beliefs are and how they stand at stark variance with the nature of God. Thus, you will see that Calvinism, like contemporary Judaism, Islam, Mormonism and the Witnesses present a false Christ.

Total Depravity
The Calvinist notion of the condition of man is that all men are totally depraved. Scripture, of course, refutes this nonsense in too many places to count.
Here is just one;

Luke 15 In the days of Herod, king of Judea, there
was a priest named Zacharias, of the division of Abijah; and he had a wife from the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth. 6 They were both righteous in the sight of God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and requirements of the Lord.

Let us remember that, at this point, neither Zacharias or Elizabeth had ever heard the name Jesus.

Unconditional election.This spiritual rat poison stipulates that God is not at all concerned with the matter of sin as pertains to salvation. In fact, this blasphemy actually has God randomly choosing who He will or will not save according to no particular reason at all. This nullifies God’s Justice. This doctrine is also explicitly refuted by Scripture.

Romans 2
1 Therefore you have no excuse, everyone of you who passes judgment, for in that which you judge another, you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things. 2 And we know that the judgment of God rightly falls upon those who practice such things. 3 But do you suppose this, O man, when you pass judgment on those who practice such things and do the same yourself, that you will escape the judgment of God? 4 Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance? 5 But because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, 6 who WILL RENDER TO EACH PERSON ACCORDING TO HIS DEEDS: 7 to those who by perseverance in doing good seek for glory and honor and immortality, eternal life; 8 but to those who are selfishly ambitious and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, wrath and indignation. 9 There will be tribulation and distress for every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also of the Greek, 10 but glory and honor and peace to everyone who does
good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 11 For there is no partiality with God.
Limited Atonement

This heretical piffle states that Christ did not die for all but only for certain people. Once again, the Scriptures say exactly the opposite;

Romans 6:10 For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God.

Hebrews 7:27 who does not need daily, like those high priests, to offer up sacrifices, first for His own sins and then for the sins of the people, because this He did once for all when He offered up Himself.
Hebrews 9:12 and not through the blood of goats and calves, but through His own blood, He entered the holy place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.
Hebrews 10:10 By this will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
1 Peter 3:18 For Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God, having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit;

Irresistible Grace
This doctrine states that all who are called by God’s Grace, and chosen by Christ, cannot resist accepting that Grace. Again, complete nonsense.

John 670 Jesus answered them, “Did I not choose you, the twelve, and one of you is a devil?” 71* He spoke of Judas the son of Simon Iscariot, for he, one of the twelve, was to betray him.

Perserverence of the Saints
Calvinists hold that those who have received God’s Grace cannot help but persevere in Holiness. Once again, teaching exactly the opposite of what the Bible does.

2 Peter 220 For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overpowered, the last state has become worse for them than the first. 21 For it would have been better for them never to have known the way of righteousness than after knowing it to turn back from the holy commandment delivered to them. 22* It has happened to them according to the true proverb, The dog turns back to his own vomit , and the sow is washed only to wallow in the mire.

Flush the T.U.L.I.P and Do what ever you can to purge this demonic poison from the earth by teaching people that it is from the god of hell, not the God of heaven.

Please catch our Blog talk radio show on this topic. It is entitled Zach and Felipe, hoisted by their own petard.

Touchdown Irish

Posted by John Benko - November 13th, 2011

One of Notre Dame’s touchdowns from our seats at Fed Ex field

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*BEST OF DTB #110* A predator in happy valley

Posted by John Benko - November 9th, 2011


The image could not be any more made for afternoon TV.

The plain white and blue uniforms, the grandfatherly figure who taught his players not just how to play hard nosed football, but how to live as decent human beings.

The setting was a blue collar college town in the outskirts of Pittsburgh, known as “Happy Valley”.

Cue the people laughing amidst the sounds of a marching band and cheerleaders shaking pom poms.

Unfortunately, it appears there was a monster in Happy Valley.

Shrouding himself in the pomp, circumstance and tradition of this iconic and legendary football program, was a ghoul, sadistically stalking little boys. Using the cover of a charity program, Jerry Sandusky allegedly raped up to 17 boys. I say allegedly because our system of justice presumes innocence in this case.

It is getting very hard for me to do so.

Image vs Reality.

All of life is encapsulated in this conflict. Each of us is caught up in the struggle between seeing that which is and that which isn’t. Sometimes we fail to see that which is because we are simply not provided with the right information. Sometimes we simply refuse to see things as they are because we don’t want to. Sometimes, there is a blurring of the lines between these two.

Nevertheless, for up to 17 boys (if not more, heaven forbid), the incongruity between their reality and the image of Happy Valley could seemingly not have been more stark.

The truth is, specifically for these poor boys (and their families) in particular, and for the rest of us in general, Happy Valley does not actually exist on this earth. Catholic prayer refers to earth as a valley of tears and the Psalmist, at least indirectly, as the valley of the shadow of death.

It is hard for those of us watching to comprehend how the devil can flourish in a place called Happy Valley. That is just the point. The devil uses the illusion to mask his true intention- our destruction.

Take this example. Here, the enemy used the very ruse of Penn State values, the very pretense of a charity designed to help children, to wreak savage wreckage and destruction, traumatizing families and sending shock waves of scandal for the end game of the ruin of souls.

If there is a compassion in all this, it is in the fact that the veil is pulled back and all of us, for a time, come to understand the devil’s true and unvarnished malevolence for us.

Do not fail to learn from such a painful lesson. Do not fail to be impressed by the sheer cruelty, selfishness and indifference displayed by this sociopathic monster and by the cowards that surrounded him, emboldening his grotesque, life shattering exploitations of our most innocent.

In the Penn State catastrophe, we should see the Devil for who he truly is and be far less willing to go chasing after sin, doing his bidding, gaining for him even more power to defile the innocent, destroy families and drag souls into hell.

Not my family, Lucifer. Not without a fight.

Saint Michael the Archangel,
defend us in battle.
Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil.
May God rebuke him, we humbly pray;
and do Thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host -
by the Divine Power of God -
cast into hell, satan and all the evil spirits,
who roam throughout the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.

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