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Enchanting Lustful Lies - Part IV
Faith

The Crossroads at 23rd Street

 

"For, professing themselves to be wise, they became fools." (Romans 1:22)

 

Errors can be corrected and trends reversed if only our faith and determination does not fail us in our earnest quest for the truth.

(Fiction)

Part IV ... The Changing of the Guard

The Changing of the Guard

Mark 16:17-19

(17) "And these signs will accompany those who believe: In My name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues;"

(18) "they will pick up snakes with their hands, and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not harm them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will be made well.”

(19) "After the Lord Jesus had spoken to them, He was taken up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God."

Daemon had seriously contemplated putting the validity of the words found in Mark 16:17-19 to the real test but stopped just short of losing his sanity and actually implementing it. There was no real need for such brashness. There were other ways of meeting out divine justice to Joseph.

True, Joseph did have a worrisome medical condition and was undergoing the controversial Chelation Therapy to remove an accumulation of toxic metals (poisons) that were building up to dangerous levels within his vascular system. It was feasible that by maliciously mixing into his diet small doses of those same toxins Joseph’s would eventually suffer a fatal reaction. No one would suspect foul play as the treatment itself stated openly and warned that one possible side effect was “death”.

But that would be an act of “murder”, an unpardonable “mortal sin” and Daemon had no wish of spending time and all eternity in the fires of hell. Maahes on the other hand, who had planted that seed in Daemon’s mind, thought it was a clever way to implement the “Changing of the Guard”. But, never mind there were many other ways in which the young initiate could carry out his plan to remove Joseph from the scene and still condemn himself to those same eternal tormenting fires.

After evaluating his options Daemon decided that “poison” was still the most viable solution but it would be the type that would act to poison the hearts and minds of his “brothers” in the community against Joseph.

The 3 remaining oblates in the community were not unaware of the seriousness of what had transpired. They comprehended fully the gravity associated with the fact that Joseph had successfully devised and promoted a falsehood; which was, at a minimum, in direct violation of the 9th commandment.

Sin

Exodus 20:16

You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.”

This principle includes all forms of lying.

His “brothers” acknowledged that the falsehood, though a sin, had restored a semblance of order within the community and had silenced the disquieting murmurings of the parishioners in relation to the “separating of the wheat from the chaff” that Joseph had carried out within the monastery. But no matter how one rationalized Joseph’s intention/action; in the end it was still a dishonest act, a mortal sin, committed by a man supposedly representing Christ at the monastery.

The worst thing about being lied to is knowing that you weren't considered to be worth the truth.” – Anonymous

It didn’t require too high of an IQ to come to the conclusion that “if” the truth concerning the sexual misconduct of those expelled / departed brothers had been confessed / announced to the parishioners the resulting scandal would have been devastating to the credibility of the MHOSJ. They risked being all “lumped into the same immoral basket” and looked down upon with skepticism and derision. And that was something that was unacceptable and could not be tolerated. They’d come too far and worked too hard to have their names tarnished and their reputations dragged through the mud.

Maahes subliminally made it clear to Daemon that before Joseph could be “removed” from the picture all of the temporal administrative responsibilities that governed the day to day functioning of the monastery had to be revised to somehow include him in all its pertinent procedures and processes.

Daemon wasted no time in gathering his facts and preparing a report accompanied by a marvelous “PowerPoint” presentation that brilliantly depicted his vision on how the MHOSJ should be structured and run in order to expand its target audience and save a maximum number of “lost” souls; in a cost-effective manner. He’d diligently “burned the midnight oil” over a five week period in checking, double checking and finalizing the solid evidence that he hoped would lead Joseph to the same logical conclusion he’d arrived at. It was ”God’s Will” that the MHOSJ take its ministry and message out of the obscurity of the “analog catacombs” it was currently confined to and march boldly out and into the expansive daylight of a “digital arena” where they could more effectively combat the forces of Satan.

“Bravo!” … Maahes enthusiastically applauded the passionate audacity of the initiate’s plan. Daemon desired to be a co-worker with God; which was just what Maahes needed to know. That wish would be the bait he’d use on the hook to lure the initiate to his spiritual demise.

A meeting was arranged with Joseph and the remaining “brothers” who sat spellbound during the presentation. The initiate succeeded in inspiring trust amongst the others. The plan was captivating, especially when it came to the section concerning the lucrative financial remunerative advantages they’d all benefit from.

Daemon went on with brazen confidence and convinced Joseph and the remaining “brothers” that he possessed the “electronic skills” required to effectively and efficiently oversee and manage such an operation, ensuring the venture’s success. All he needed was their support, approval, permission to get started and their blessing.

Within an hour Daemon had secured for himself a promotion to a position as one of the “signatories” required for bank related affairs and had been granted the responsibility of overseeing and managing the document filing system for the community; which he promised to “eventually” incorporate into the envisioned electronic system.

It was a bold, shrewd, calculated, risky move but Daemon had pulled it off admirably. His worth in/to the community expanded proportionately and he was now recognized and respected by “his brothers” as Joseph’s new right hand man.

The MHOSJ was at a crossroads and was about to change directions and become a “Voice Crying in the Digital Wilderness.” Time would tell if that voice, as Maahes believed, would mercilessly lead thousands upon thousands of souls away from what Saint Ignatius’ referred to as the Universal “Catholic” Church.

Maahes watched with admiration from the shadows as Daemon masterfully implemented his cunning plan without any intervention on his part. “The boy has become a man.”, he chuckled to himself. The only skill he didn’t mention he’d mastered in the meeting was the “skill of deceit”.

Yes the boy was indeed becoming a man, a con-man … taking his first unassisted steps on the crooked path that leads to oblivion. Everything was going to plan, even better than initially expected.

A student does no honor to the master if he always remains a student.” - Anonymous

Patience was the only element still lacking in the plan.

It took nine full months before the birth of the MHOSJ website was up and producing the results that Daemon had predicted would come from “trusting in the Lord” and taking the “digital” leap of faith. The Monastery’s vicious verbal attacks against the Vatican II Church, the Orthodox Church, Protestantism, Buddhism, Atheism, the Jews, Islam, the Baptism of Blood, the Baptism of Desire, Freemasonry, Communism, Gun Control, Homosexuals, Lesbians, Gay marriage, Masturbation, associating with heretics (non-traditional Catholics), UFOs, Rock music, etc.; was receiving more attention than anyone at the monastery had dreamed of.

Yet not all of that notoriety was of a “positive” nature. The MHOSJ had crossed the line that separated freedom of speech with radical extremism and managed to get their name listed with the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) as an "Active Radical Traditional Catholicism Group; a hate group that should be avoided at all costs. Added to that inglorious recognition there were the countless other competing schismatic, carpet bagging so-called traditional Catholic cyber ministries that attacked them on their dogmatic and conspiratorial positions; but mainly out of fear that the MHOSJ’s attractive website with its provocative alluring message would draw away their followers along with their monthly donations (tithes).

It’s been said that “there’s no such thing as bad publicity.” The theory is that as long as people are actively speaking about you or your cause, it’s a “good” thing. Yes, even when what is being said is, in and of itself, horrendous … the publicity being generated is fundamentally “good” because your name and/or your cause remains on the top of people’s minds, keeping you and/or your movement relevant.

Whatever the reason was behind the increase of user interest, the MHOSJ’s new found fame was bringing a record number of curious people to their website. The website’s “hit counter” soared and with that their position on the most prominent “search engines” eked its way towards the coveted first page internet ranking.

As an immediate consequence of their new found success, the “ancient ones’” printing press, concealed in the monastery basement, was now busy with type-setting only MHOSJ’s books and pamphlets that were then sold on the website’s “book store” kiosk. The electronic book store also offered visitors the opportunity to purchase a vast number of video and audio DVDs and other non-MHOSJ authored religious books that supported “their” position, their view … their take on the “truth”. The book store’s e-cash register was channeling hundreds of dollars weekly into the monastery’s steadily increasing bank account. “God works in mysterious ways”.

The first casualty in the new business plan was the paper version of the newsletter “Voice Crying in the Wilderness”. It was no longer generated and distributed by standard mail as it was no longer needed. The cost of maintaining and carrying such an antiquated system was simply not worth the effort any more.

The MHOSJ was transforming itself into a shiny new vehicle to be used in their “business of religion” and it was now shifting gears and speeding past those poor unfortunate hitch-hiking souls who were NOT “connected” and were leaving them stranded, to fend for themselves, on the side of the “straight and narrow” road.

On “All Saints Day” Joseph became so excited about the sweeping success of his cyber ministry that the euphoric shock of it all, coupled with side effects of the “Chelation Therapy” he was undergoing , stopped his heart abruptly and he died while prostrated on the cold tile floor before the church’s alter giving thanks to God. In the twinkling of an eye Joseph was judged, sentenced and, by the grace of God, was not condemned to Hell but rather righteously led away to do hard time (penance) in purgatory.

Purgatory

The Catechism of the Catholic Church defines purgatory as a "purification, so as to achieve the holiness necessary to enter the joy of heaven," which is experienced by those "who die in God’s grace and friendship, but still imperfectly purified" (CCC 1030). It notes that "this final purification of the elect . . . is entirely different from the punishment of the damned." (CCC 1031).

The purification is necessary because, as Scripture teaches, nothing unclean will enter the presence of God in heaven (Rev. 21:27) and, while we may die with our mortal sins forgiven, there can still be many impurities in us, specifically venial sins and the temporal punishment due to sins already forgiven.

Two Judgments

When we die, we undergo what is called the particular, or individual, judgment. Scripture says that "it is appointed for men to die once, and after that comes judgment" (Heb. 9:27). We are judged instantly and receive our reward, for good or ill. We know at once what our final destiny will be. At the end of time, when Jesus returns, there will come the general judgment to which the Bible refers, for example, in Matthew 25:31-32: "When the Son of man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate them one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats." In this general judgment all our sins will be publicly revealed (Luke 12:2–5).

Augustine said, in The City of God, that "temporary punishments are suffered by some in this life only, by others after death, by others both now and then; but all of them before that last and strictest judgment" (21:13). It is between the particular and general judgments, then, that the soul is purified of the remaining consequences of sin: "I tell you, you will never get out till you have paid the very last copper." (Luke 12:59).

Maahes roared with cachinnation. He found it to be a rather amusing and fitting end to an otherwise sad but all too human twisted tale of disillusionment and vainglory. He would have liked to have been able to claim for his master, Joseph’s soul? But that was just not meant to be. God is, unfortunately for some, just.

The news of Joseph's passing was met with dismay, disbelief and grief by the monastery’s parishioners. What would happen to them now that Joseph was taken by the Lord? A solemn funeral mass was held in his honor, his casket was carried out to the awaiting hearse and driven to a consecrated hole in the ground where he was buried and became “food” for worms.

With Joseph’s departure the changing of the guard was completed. Daemon was elected shortly afterwards by his “brothers” at the monastery to replace Joseph as their Abbot/Superior and to sit on “the throne” (Christ’s Chair) at the MHOSJ.

Maahes was well pleased for he knew that with his continued guidance and assistance Daemon’s reign would be gloriously ruthless. The spiritual slaughter was about to begin.

 

Part 666 ... The Puppet Master

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