This day and time between 12 noon and 1:00 p.m. is very powerful. 

If the children cannot recite Psalm 51 between 12 noon and 1:00 p.m., say it in the evening as a family.


The Blessed virgin promised that whatever a person asked her for during this Hour of Grace (even in impossible cases) would be granted to them, if it was in accordance with the Will of the Eternal Father 

My wish is that every year on the 8 December, at noon, an “Hour of Grace” will be installed. Many spiritual graces and physical blessings will be received by those who pray, undisturbed, during this hour. 

DECEMBER 8 – Feast of the Immaculate Conception – HOUR OF GRACE.

During the period of November 24, 1946 to December 8, 1947, the Blessed Mother appeared to Sister Pierina in a little church in Montichiari, Italy, eleven times. On the first appearance the Blessed Mother told Sister Pierina she wanted to be known as the “Mystical Rose” and that an Hour of Grace should be kept at noon, December 8, in all the Catholic Churches of the world. The Blessed Mother wanted this to be known through all of Italy and the entire world. 

It was November 16, 1947 when Sister Pierina was finishing her thanksgiving after Holy Communion when she saw a great light. She then saw a vision of the Blessed Mother as “Mystical Rose”. Sister Pierina was so deeply moved by the stunning beauty of Our Lady that she began to talk to her. All of a sudden a gentle force made her kneel down in front of Our Lady. The Blessed Mother spoke these words, “My Son is so greatly offended by the sins of the people, especially by the sins of impurity. He is already planning to send the deluge upon the people for their destruction, but I have asked Him to show mercy and not send the destruction. So that is why I have appeared, to ask for penance and atonement for the sins of impurity.” 

Again, Our Lady asked for penance. She said, “Penance is nothing more than accepting all our crosses daily willingly. No matter how small, accept them with love.” At this time she told Sister Pierina to come again December 8 at noon, “This will be my Hour of Grace.” The Sister asked how she was to prepare for this Hour of Grace. To which the Blessed Mother said, “With prayers and penance. Pray the 51st psalm with outstretched arms three times. During the Hour of Grace, many spiritual graces would be granted. The most hard-hearted sinners will be touched by the Grace of God.” 

The Blessed Virgin promised that whatever a person asked her for during this Hour of Grace (even in impossible cases) would be granted to them, if it was in accordance with the Will of the Eternal Father.

It was December 7 when Sister Pierina felt the urge to go to church. This time she was accompanied by the priest and the Mother Superior. The Blessed Mother appeared with a young boy and girl dressed in beautiful white clothing. Sister Pierina was sure these little ones were angels because they were so beautiful. The Blessed Mother said, “Tomorrow I will show you My Immaculate Heart, which is so little known among the people.” She asked people to pray for Russia. “There are so many people being held prisoners of whom their families know nothing of, because they have been gone for so many years. Pray for the conversion of Russia. The suffering of the soldiers and their sacrifices and martyrdom will bring peace to Italy.” “The little children are Francisco and Jacinta. I am giving them to you as your companions. You will have much to suffer for my sake. I want simplicity and goodness from you, as of these little children.” The Blessed Mother blessed Sister Pierina, the priest and all those who were gathered there. 

On the morning of December 8, people began arriving at the little church at 8:00 in the morning from neighbouring towns. By noon some 10,000 people had gathered to see the Blessed Mother, many of whom had to stand outside because the church did not have enough room for the large crowd. Sister Pierina was accompanied to church by her mother and brothers, the Mother Superior and the Chief of Police from Montichiari. Sister Pierina was reciting the Rosary with the crowd in the middle of the church. Suddenly a brilliant white light appeared from the ceiling. Stairs were coming from the light down to the floor of the church, about fifteen feet in length. The staircase was beautifully decorated with red, white and yellow roses. The Blessed Virgin appeared so radiant, dressed in white, with her hands folded. She was standing on a splendid carpet at the top of the stairs, made of the red, white and yellow roses. 

In the most gentle and loving voice, Our Lady smiled and began to speak, “I am the Immaculate Conception, the Mother of All Graces and the Mother of my Beloved Son, Jesus. I want to be known as the Mystical Rose.”

“My wish is that every year on December 8th, at noon, an “Hour of Grace” will be installed. Many spiritual graces and physical blessings will be received by those who pray, undisturbed, during this hour.” 

Then, slowly, she began to descend the staircase, gracefully scattering roses as she went along, until she reached midway of the staircase. Here again the Blessed Mother spoke, “I am very happy to see this great demonstration of Faith.” 

Sister Pierina asked for many of the sinners to be forgiven. The Blessed Mother replied, “My Divine Son will show His Greatest Mercy as much as the people will pray for them. I want this to be known and told to the Pope (Pius XII). Tell him I want him to install the “Hour of Grace” through the whole world and even those who are not able to go to church during this hour, will receive the same graces by praying during this time in their home at noon time.” She also asked that a statue be made and placed on the spot where she stood. This should be called the “Rosa Mystica”, and carried in a procession through the town, at which time many graces will be given and cures will take place. Then the statue is to be returned to the church. 

Our Lady prayed for the sick, some will be cured, others not. Many men, women and children were cured at that very instant. A 26 year old woman, who could not say a word for nine months, suddenly began shouting, “I see her, I see the Blessed Virgin.” An 18 year old girl with ulcers was instantly cured. A five year old boy who had been paralyzed was told by the Blessed Mother, “Come to me, you will be walking now.” He was on the blessed stones and was able to walk. There were three others who were very sick and were immediately cured. But of course, the greatest miracles taking place were those of the spiritual blessings being shed upon the people gathered in the church.

The Blessed Mother said, “This is the last time I will appear here. Pray, weep and do penance on these stones and you will receive the care of My Motherly Heart.” She then left the little church, but because of the unending Love of Our Heavenly Mother, she has given us “The Hour of Grace”, to be spread through the entire world. She had given all the opportunity to demonstrate our love and trust to her and to help make reparation for the grievous sins offending her Beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. 


1. Day and time of the Hour of Grace: December 8th, Feast of the Immaculate Conception, to be started at 12:00 noon and continuing until 1:00 p.m. for one full hour of prayer.

2. During this hour, the person making the “Hour of Grace” either at home or at Church must put away all distractions (do not answer the phones or answer any doors or do anything but totally concentrate on your union with God during this special Hour of Grace) .

3. Begin the Hour of Grace by praying 3 times the 51st Psalm with out-stretched arms. (Psalm 51 appears below) 

4. The rest of the Hour of Grace may be spent in silent communication with God meditating upon the Passion of Jesus, saying the Holy Rosary, praising God in your own way, or by using favorite prayers, singing hymns, meditating upon other psalms, etc. 

Remember to pray for your country during this hour. The Blessed Virgin has requested that her important message be sent throughout the entire world. Please help her Mission: that all souls be drawn to GOD and that JESUS will be loved in every heart. This is the perpetual song of her heart. Let it also be ours.




Have mercy on me, God, in your goodness; in your abundant compassion blot out my offense. 
Wash away all my guilt; from my sin cleanse me. 
For I know my offense; my sin is always before me. 
Against you alone have I sinned; I have done such evil in your sight 
That you are just in your sentence, blameless when you condemn. 
True, I was born guilty, a sinner, even as my mother conceived me. 
Still, you insist on sincerity of heart; in my inmost being teach me wisdom. 
Cleanse me with hyssop, that I may be pure; wash me, make me whiter than snow. 
Let me hear sounds of joy and gladness; let the bones you have crushed rejoice. 
Turn away your face from my sins; blot out all my guilt. 
A clean heart create for me, God; renew in me a steadfast spirit. 
Do not drive me from your presence, nor take from me your holy spirit. 
Restore my joy in your salvation; sustain in me a willing spirit. 
I will teach the wicked your ways, that sinners may return to you. 
Rescue me from death, God, my saving God, that my tongue may praise your healing power. 
Lord, open my lips; my mouth will proclaim your praise. 
For you do not desire sacrifice; a burnt offering you would not accept. 
My sacrifice, God, is a broken spirit; God, do not spurn a broken, humbled heart. 
Make Zion prosper in your good pleasure; rebuild the walls of Jerusalem. 
Then you will be pleased with proper sacrifice, burnt offerings and holocausts; then bullocks will be offered on your altar. Amen 
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By: Marvin L. Covault, Lt. Gen. US Army, retired

December 5, 2021

(Emphasis added)

There is an old saying, “For every complex problem there is a simple solution and it is usually wrong. The Biden administration has brought new meaning to that piece of wisdom. Some examples:   

Complex problem: the Afghanistan drawdown.

Biden simple solution: force the issue with an arbitrary and low in-country force level of 2500 U.S. military personnel.   

Consequences, we could not meet Biden’s demand to secure the embassy and simultaneously keep Bagram Airbase open with only 2500 combatants. Bagram closed first guaranteeing a failed evacuation.  

Complex problem: securing the border. 

Biden’s Simple Solution: open the border. Consequences, in 10 months the U.S. has been inundated with sick illegals, drugs, drug dealers, human traffickers, gang members, possible terrorist cells from multiple countries and now We the People are on the hook for billions of dollars to fund welfare, education, crime and medical. 

Complex problem:  Trump defeated every democrat and legal effort to deny building a wall on the southern border.  

Biden Simple Solution: with the stroke of a pen on inauguration day, shut down construction. 

Consequences, the cost to We the People is $2 billion and counting. 

Complex problem: about 20-25% of the 1.7 million illegal immigrants crossing the border this year are ill, aka Covid positive.  

Biden’s Simple Solution: don’t test them.Consequences, when U.S. citizens have been asked to stay home, businesses forced to shut down, schools closed, etc. the super-spreader illegals have been bussed and flown into communities all across America.  

Complex problem: Americans would be horrified, ashamed and resentful of the administration if they were shown the inhumane crowded conditions of holding areas when the border patrol is overwhelmed with illegals.  Biden’s Simple Solution: declare a complete blackout of media coverage of holding areas and additionally get the illegals moving on busses and planes ASAP. 

Consequences, pass the problem off to communities across America without funding to support it.

Complex problem: while the southern border is processing hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens per month, the overall immigration policy for the U.S. is in desperate need of a complete overhaul.  

Biden’s Simple Solution: amnesty.  

Consequences, it is a slap in the face for the millions of immigrants who have worked and are working the lawful route to become U.S. citizens.  

Complex problem: shipping back-log caused by long term systemic problems such as rigid union work rules, bad regulations in West Coast ports, truck restrictions, driver qualifications, unrealistic state-issued regulations, insufficient container storage areas and insufficient equipment/facilities.  

Biden’s Simple solution: work weekends.  Consequences, continued backlogs and empty shelves across America just in time for Christmas. 

Complex problem: government-funded Covid relief packages for Americans. The $484 billion Covid Relief package made sense in April, 2020 during the economic lock-down.  But not so much the $2.3 trillion in December, 2020 when economic growth factors were looking better. But it made zero sense by April, 2021 when economic recovery indicators were strong.  

Biden’s Simple solution: demonstrate he was a, “President for all the people” and send out another $2 trillion in relief.   

Consequences, the economic recovery hit a road-block when millions of workers were content receiving their government checks and refused to go back to work. And, there are still 10 million unfilled jobs. 

Complex problem: from observing Covid-related distance learning at home, parents became increasingly aware of what is being taught and not taught in our classrooms.  They openly confronted ineffective school boards across the nation.  

Biden’s Simple Solution: call the outspoken parents “domestic terrorists” and weaponize the Justice Department and FBI to deal with the “problem.”

Complex problem: how to pass nonsensical liberal legislation that, if considered as a stand-alone proposal, could not survive the light of day (for example, amnesty for millions of illegal migrants). 

Biden’s Simple Solution: hide hundreds of these non-passible issues in multi-trillion-dollar legislation that is thousands of pages long and unread by legislators who are asked to pass them with one up-or-down vote. 

New Biden administration complex problem: how to immediately pander to the far-left liberals who voted for him.  

Biden’s Simple Solution: within hours after the inauguration, alter the entire dynamic of oil production. 

Consequences, immediate and continuous increasing fuel prices which negatively impact every single American.  

Complex problem: how to, at least partially, pay for massive spending proposals.  

Biden’s Simple Solution: equally new massive tax increases.  

Consequences, general disincentivization, lack of capital for business expansion, steady slow-to-no-growth economy and taxation that will without a doubt eventually hit the middle class hard. 

Complex problem: how to force the issue of transitioning to battery-powered vehicles.  

Biden’s Simple Solution: implement policies that force the price of gasoline so high that battery-powered demand will go up, (maybe).  

Consequences, the U.S. immediately transitioned from oil independence and exporter to dependence on OPEC imports which is an enormous geopolitical negative position.  

Complex problem: how to deal with American’s displeasure at rising gas prices.  

Biden’s Simple Solution: take 50 million barrels of oil out of the nation’s strategic reserve.  

Consequences, 50 million barrels is equal to 2 ½ days of U.S. consumption. A 2 ½ day reprieve will have zero impact on nation-wide gas prices. The reserve is called “strategic” for a reason.  Since we are now a net-importer of oil, we are subject to being cut off by suppliers.  Yes, it can happen. Every one of my generation, including Biden, have vivid memories of the oil embargo in 1973-74. 

Complex problem: who can supply imported oil, Venezuela, Iran, Russia?  

Biden’s Simple Solution: ask OPEC to drill more.  

Consequences, they said, “no.” There are potentially serious future implications in that simple answer.

Complex problem: collecting all the tax dollars owed to the federal government. 

Biden’s Simple Solution: hire 86,852 additional IRS agents. 

Consequences, additional $80 billion in funding.  Additionally, watchdog reports say the IRS problems are widespread incompetence, mismanagement, ineptitude and abuse that will not only not be solved but exasperated by adding 86,852 new hires. 

Complex problem: improving race relations.  

Biden’s Simple Solution: support indoctrination of school children with Critical Race Theory which is an obvious race-divisive tool.  Secondly, imply that the majority of white Americans are white supremacists, saying, “white supremacy is the most lethal threat to America today.”

Consequences, Biden rhetoric has immediately and drastically increased the racial divide in our country. Identity politics in action. 

Complex problem: all categories of crime rapidly rising nationwide.  

Biden’s Simple Solution: blame the racist police. 

Consequences, Americans generally do not feel safe and secure. 

Polling tells us these are the issues Americans worry about, “a great deal:”

ü affordable health care, 

ü the economy, 

ü inflation, 

ü affordable energy, 

ü race relations, 

ü illegal immigration, 

ü drugs, 

ü terrorist attacks, 

ü size and power of the federal government, homelessness,

ü crime and 

ü Covid. 

Complex problem: extemporaneously answering detailed questions concerning these type critical issues during news conferences.  

Biden’s Simple Solution: address some issues with prepared teleprompter scripts.  

Consequences, more often than not, he will turn his back and walk away as the media shouts questions at him. In doing so, our president is figuratively and literally turning his back on America. The combined weight of three critical character traits, accountability-trust-respect, are in play as he exits stage-left. Accountability: his remarks are routinely filled with blame; Trump, racists, white supremacists, Covid or failures of We the People. Accountability, zero.  Trust: how are we expected to put our trust in someone who is frequently guilty of misrepresenting the truth about major issues?  Respect: notwithstanding his decades-old obsession with being president, how can we respect someone, and his family, who knew he is physically and mentally incapable of handling the toughest leadership job in the world? How many times have we heard our president say, “I was told I am not supposed to take questions?’ Translation, I cannot be trusted to know or say the correct thing. 


Major national issues, immigration, the economy, entitlements, crime, education, race relations are being turned inside out by Biden-Simple-Solution, knee-jerk, vindictive decisions without a national debate and which go against the will of the American people. 

Polling data: 

Reputable pollsters report that: 

ü 76% of American voters do not support Biden’s open borders. 

ü 78% do not support more dead-end welfare entitlements without workfare incentives. 

 My personal “polling” says: 

ü 100% of Americans are against the out-of-control rise in fuel prices.  

ü 100% of Americans want better results from our broken education system.  

ü 99% of Americans want sustained economic growth which cannot simultaneously exist with a Biden Simple Solution destructive tax-and-spend economic philosophy.  

ü 100% of Americans do not want the IRS conducting detailed audits of their bank accounts. 

ü 100% of Americans want to feel safe walking the streets of our towns and cities. 

ü 99% of Americans are against dehumanizing, demonizing and defunding police.  

ü 99% of Americans want criminals arrested, held, charged, prosecuted, tried and if convicted sentenced to the full extent of the law.  

ü 99% of Americans want drastically improved race relations not greater division. 

For an incoming president to set out, as one of his legacy accomplishments, to infuse into this country a massive policy of generational entitlement dependency through multiple, massive unaffordable programs with no workfare requirements goes against everything this great nation has been about since the first settlers arrived 500 years ago.  America will always provide for those who are willing but unable to provide for themselves; but it is inhumane to infuse government dependency into the psyche of young Americans. This is not what America wants, this is not what America needs, this is an enormous stepping stone on the path to destroy our country. An entitlement nation discourages incentive to be all you can be. The Biden transformation is unconscionable leadership and one of the major stepping stones toward a socialist state.  

President Biden, stop, damnit, just stop what you are doing and listen carefully to We the People.  Stop telling us you, “will be president for all Americans” and start doing, not just saying, but doing what is necessary to move us forward economically, socially and culturally to be all we can and should be.  

Mr. President, you have told us you want to, “transform America.”  Unfortunately, you are on a very fast track to do exactly that.  But when your days in the White House are over and you look back at the transformation, I do not honestly believe you will agree with the results. 

There is one exception to the wisdom of the above thesis that, “For every complex problem there is a simple solution and it is usually wrong.”  In this instance there is a viable simple solution; we must defeat Biden’s Build Back Broke legislation. Why?

The Penn Wharton model tells us that the most likely cost of the Build Back Better legislation is over $4 trillion dollars. There is a Simple Solution to this potentially destructive transformative bill; first defeat it then tear it completely apart and for every individual entitlement program, every major Green New Deal expenditure, every immigration, every major transformative issue, consider them as stand-alone proposals.  Shine the light of day on them by letting the process play out as it should.  That is, hold congressional committee hearing on each one; listening to expert witnesses.  Let the media report out to We the People on each committee vote.  Inform we the people so that we can respond to polls and email our legislators thereby forcing Congress to do its job. 

Our Constitution, the greatest document in world history, constructed by the most brilliant assembly of men in history tells us that, “Governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”  Let these immortal words become the guiding light going forward for the Biden administration and our broken Congress. 

Marvin L. Covault, Lt Gen US Army, retired, is the author of VISION TO EXECUTION, a book for leaders, a columnist for THE PILOT, a national award-winning local newspaper in Southern Pines, NC and the author of a blog,


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Misremembering Pearl Harbor

The tactically brilliant but strategically crazy attack on Pearl Harbor unleashed incalculable furor against a once sophisticated Japanese empire, which foolishly attacked the United States at peace.

By Victor Davis Hanson

American Greatness

December 5, 2021

Most Americans once were mostly in agreement about what happened on December 7, 1941, 80 years ago this year. But not so much now, given either the neglect of America’s past in the schools or woke revisionism at odds with the truth. 

The Pacific war that followed Pearl Harbor was not a result of America egging on the Japanese, not about starting a race war, and not about much other than a confident and cruel Japanese empire falsely assuming that its stronger American rival either would not or could not stop its transoceanic ambitions. 

On an early Sunday morning at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, the Japanese Imperial Navy conducted a tactically successful, but strategically imbecilic, surprise attack on the U.S. 7th Fleet—while at peace and without a declaration of war. The assault—synchronized with subsequent bombing and invasions of the Philippines and British-controlled Malaya, Singapore, and Hong Kong, and some Pacific Islands—did not just ensure an existential Pacific theater war between Japan and America. It also prompted the entry of the United States on December 11 into the European theater of World War II, after both Italy and Nazi Germany first declared war on America. Had the latter not done so, it is arguable that the United States would have instead concentrated on Japan alone and might have knocked it out of the war even earlier.

Revisionists often cite conspiracy theories that the Roosevelt Administration lured Japan into the war by previously limiting oil exports to Tokyo (a mere five months before Pearl Harbor) or by foolishly moving the 7th Fleet from San Diego to a deliberately exposed and not so well defended Pearl Harbor. 

Such contrarian views fail to persuade because the one-sided source of tensions had been clear to all for a decade. Japan invaded Manchuria in 1931. It resumed its war with China by invading the mainland in 1937. In September 1940, it absorbed French colonial Indochina. The idea of a Japanese Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere was informally circulating by 1940, as a blueprint of consolidation of the planned Japanese imperial wartime acquisitions of China, and the former British, American, French, and Dutch colonial territories. 

The mercantile system was envisioned as a sort of Asian version of a would-be Napoleonic Europe but based on the supposed racial superiority of Japan and the propagandistic and cynical notion that even harsher Japanese imperialism would be less resented by Asians in the Pacific than then current nation-building colonialism of Western powers. Such crude propaganda was never taken too seriously outside of Tokyo, given the Japanese mass civilian killings of conquered Asians in Nanking, China and the massacres that followed from the takeover of Singapore. 

Loss of Deterrence

In truth, Western powers had appeased and sold the Japanese war machine all that it required for much of the 1930s. If racism played any role in the increasing tensions, it was mostly the Japanese assumption that its rich, industrialized nation was a natural reflection of innate racial superiority. If Japan chauvinistically exaggerated its power, the allies in turn downplayed the Japanese threat on their own racialist assumptions that any emulator of Western military technology, industrialization, and military organization could never match their creators.

In more realist terms, Japan attacked Pearl Harbor because it could. Its fleet was larger than the American Pacific 7th fleet (though not by any means the entire U.S. Navy). And in many categories of fighter aircraft, torpedoes, and ships, the Japanese Imperial Navy in late 1941 was temporarily superior to that of the Americans. 

The United States had further lost deterrence in Japanese eyes because it did nothing when its chief allies Britain and France were attacked by Nazi Germany in 1940, the former bombed in autumn 1940 and spring 1941, the latter conquered in seven weeks by the Wehrmacht in May 1940. 

More germanely, Japan believed that, with the German army at the time of Pearl Harbor just a few miles from the suburbs of Moscow, the Soviet Union would likely fall within days. Hitler would then be free to consolidate his continental empire and soon vanquish remnants of the once proud allied opposition. In other words, Japan calculated that it might gain credit for the inevitable Axis victory before the war ended, and thus grab what it could before the spoils were fought over and divvied up to others.

Note that the Germans cared little for their de facto allied Japanese concerns when they concluded a nonaggression pact with the Soviet Union in August 1939—when Japan was fighting a supposedly shared communist Russian enemy on the Mongolian border. 

And in turn, the Japanese cared even less for Axis solidarity when they reciprocated by signing their own nonaggression pact with Stalin in April 1941, just weeks before Operation Barbarossa, an agreement that would later persuade the Soviet Union that it no longer needed to worry about a second front on its eastern borders and could focus all its resources on the German invader. 

After April 1941, Japan assumed that whatever the ensuing relationship between Germany and Russia, it could now concentrate on the Anglo-Americans alone, and primarily with its navy that achieved parity with British and American sea- and airpower.

All these were logical considerations for a belligerent power intent on expanding an already ascendant Asian Empire into the Pacific. But such rationales were still predicated on faulty intelligence, a racist misreading of history, and little knowledge of the American people. 

Tokyo had no real appreciation that the United States was already building a second fleet of modern carriers, battleships, cruisers, and submarines that would soon make the American navy larger than all the world’s fleets combined. Indeed, the Americans would launch over 145 aircraft carriers, including over 20 Essex fleet carriers, the most advanced in the world. 

Tokyo had no inkling that the anemic Depression-era American economy was capable of rapid expansionary growth. More specifically, the American gross natural product by late 1944 would outpace all five economies of the major combatants—Germany, Italy, Japan, Great Britain, and the Soviet Union—combined. 

Ignorance of Innate American Strength

Unlike the Germans, Japanese, or Soviets, the Americans and the British were the only two World War II powers with the global reach, lift, transport, and resources to fight a two-front war successfully. In contrast, Japan would quickly learn that its decade-long presence in China was an open wound that drained off needed resources in its simultaneous wars with the Americans and British. 

As far as the December 7 surprise attack itself, it is best seen as the worst of both worlds—conducted expertly enough to ensure damage and thus incur American furor, but not so much as to cripple America’s war-making ability or to frighten the American public into submission. 

A powerful Japanese Imperial Navy carrier task force, with an ability to launch some 350-combat aircraft from its six fleet carriers, cruised completely unnoticed some 4,000 miles to Hawaii. That the fleet could steam such a great distance without radio contact, and in rough seas at the near onset of winter, while avoiding all war and merchant ships, revealed real tactical genius.  

The operation itself likewise unfolded flawlessly. At sunrise on a Sunday morning two waves of carrier-based torpedo and dive bombers sank five battleships of the U.S. 7th fleet. The attack seriously damaged four others. In a time of peace, the Japanese killed more than 2,300 American sailors and soldiers. Somehow the Japanese fleet safely steamed back to Japan. Losses were minimal: just 29 aircraft, and five small one-man submarines.

Again, if tactically brilliant, the Pearl Harbor attack strategically would prove a colossal disaster for Japan. It failed even to shut down the port at Pearl Harbor, as the Japanese fleet vetoed ideas of critically needed third and fourth air strikes—necessary to destroy U.S. oil storage and repair shops in the Pacific harbor facilities. Within days, Pearl Harbor was receiving 7th Fleet shipping. 

More disastrously for the Japanese, the Pacific fleet’s three American aircraft carriers based at Pearl—Enterprise, Lexington, and Saratoga—were out to sea on December 7 and therefore safe. Lexington’s dive bombers would soon help sink a Japanese carrier and damage others just six months later at the Battle of Coral Sea, before itself being lost at the battle. Both Enterprise and Saratoga would fight in several key Pacific battles and survive the war. 

As far as the relatively old and slow American battleships of Battleship Row (most were built well before 1920), had their captains received advanced word of the Japanese approach and steamed out to meet the attackers without air cover, American fatalities might have been 10 times higher—given all eight battleships likely would have been sunk on the high seas well before reaching the Japanese fleet. 

So, the Japanese incited—but did not seriously injure—the one global power that had the ability not just to defeat them but also to dismantle their distant empire and destroy the Japanese mainland itself. 

What If?

Were there more viable strategic alternatives for the war-minded Japanese? Plenty. By 1941, the European colonial presence in the Pacific was mostly either weak or nonexistent. That reality offered the Japanese options to acquire resources without war with the United States. 

Both France and the Netherlands had been under occupation by the victorious Germans since June 1940. Had the Japanese simply expanded their newly acquired Indochina concessions—appropriated from the Vichy French in 1940—grabbed the equally orphaned oil-rich Dutch East Indies, and been content with conquering resource-rich, British-held Malaysia and its fortress port at Singapore—while bypassing Pearl Harbor and the Philippines—there would have been little likelihood even then of the United States entering the conflict.

Instead, the Pearl Harbor attack enraged and woke up the Americans to launch the largest economic and industrial renaissance in history to that time. Just four months after Pearl Harbor, the United States had bombed Tokyo with Jimmy Doolittle’s carrier-based medium bombers. Note that at no time did the Japanese Imperial Navy have the ability to bomb any major U.S. continental city. By August 1942 American forces were on the offensive at Guadalcanal and were already gearing up for a two-pronged island-hopping trajectory to Tokyo.

In contrast to almost immediate December 1941 Anglo-American joint planning, Adolf Hitler was utterly surprised and not consulted about the Japanese attack. Indeed, apparently Hitler had little if any idea where Pearl Harbor was. But he nonetheless soon became delighted at the news, especially given disappointment with the dismal performance of the surface fleet of the Kreigemarine.

Nazi Germany naïvely assumed that Japan would tie down and destroy the British and American Pacific fleets and cause a diversion of allied manpower to Asia and the Pacific. Most importantly, the newly expanded war on America supposedly would allow Nazi U-boats at last to sink American merchant ships headed for Great Britain the moment they left their East Coast ports.

Instead, all Hitler earned from Pearl Harbor was an enemy more powerful than his existing opponents and an enemy alliance with huge manpower and economic resources. The new Allies—Britain, the Soviet Union, and the United States—enjoyed collectively a population double that of the Axis nations, vastly more natural resources, and three times more men and women in arms. 

The Yamamoto Myth

Admiral Yamamoto, the architect of Pearl Harbor, is often romantically portrayed as a mythical almost reluctant warrior who supposedly all along knew that he would awaken a sleeping giant by the attack. Thus, he accepted the reality that he could only run wild for six months before he was overwhelmed by American industry, technology, and righteous furor. In this historically incomplete view, the taciturn Yamamoto was a tragic hero ordered to find some impossible strategy of defeating a much larger and stronger United States.

Nothing could be further from the truth. Yamamoto himself agitated for the surprise Pearl Harbor attack. And he even threatened to resign if a skeptical General Tojo and Emperor Hirohito did not grant him a blank check to bomb the U.S. Pacific Fleet at Hawaii, a diversion of resources many in the Japanese military felt was unjustified, especially with the ongoing and increasingly expensive quagmire in China.

Yamamoto successfully argued that while the Japanese army lacked the firepower, armor, and mobility of Western land-based forces, Tokyo’s imperial air and naval power had already achieved parity—both in the quality of their arms and numbers of ships, planes, sailors and airmen. 

And in the case of 1941-era arms, Japan was often superior to both the Americans and British—at least if it struck quickly before the two Western powers were fully rearmed. Or so Yamamoto believed in arguing his victory would discourage the ensuing demoralized Americans from challenging a new vast Japanese Pacific empire. Supposedly Washington would sue for a truce, recognizing Japanese prior colonial acquisitions.

In sum, it was largely Yamamoto’s enormous ego, his tactical genius, and his strategic ineptitude, along with Japanese hubris, that explain the strategic idiocy of a brilliant but short-lived victory at Pearl Harbor. But to be fair, no student of military preparedness, economic resources, or social organization could have ever believed that a relatively vulnerable and isolationist United States, still reeling from recurring cycles of depression, in less than four years would have fought simultaneously across the Pacific and Europe with a 12 million person military, the largest economy in history, and the world’s most formidable weapons such Essex class fleet carriers, Balao submarines, B-29 long-range bombers, Hellcat and Mustang fighters and the world’s first atomic bombs. 

All that was unleashed some 80 years ago this December—once a sophisticated Japanese Empire foolishly attacked the United States at peace.


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search toggleFight For Christy

Her Story

Christy is a devoted wife, and mother to 5 beautiful children. This story begins early October when she contracted COVID during her pregnancy with Caleb. Matt, her husband will be sharing journal entries, a day to day account of her status, treatment, and care she’s received from Magee Women’s Hospital in Pittsburgh, PA which is a UPMC facility. It’s a long read. If this story touches your heart, we simply ask you share the story with your family and friends to spread awareness of how corporate medicine REALLY treats their patients and families. Some of the staff’s names have been deleted to protect their identity and prevent retaliation from the hospital.

My name is Matthew Cresto and my wife is Christy. Before we begin, I would like to make very clear that I have the utmost respect for the majority of the nursing staff here at Magee, giving my wife the best care they can with the tools and options allowed to them. There’s a couple bad apples in every bushel, but the good ones, you know who you are, I can’t thank you enough for your kindness. On with the story. She started showing symptoms of COVID-19 somewhere around October 4th, 2021 and on October 8th late at night, I drove her to Magee women’s hospital as her breathing was becoming labored and at this point she was between 35 and 36 weeks pregnant with our 3rd son, Caleb Samuel. Upon arriving, she was rushed straight to the OB ICU unit on the 2nd floor of the hospital. After getting her settled in and setup with some oxygen, they tested her for COVID. Once her test came back positive, they began talking to us about delivering Caleb ahead of schedule. He was due November 16th according to our math, so this concerned us because he would be premature. The hospital decided to do an ultrasound to get a better determination of gestational age and upon reviewing the measurements taken from the ultrasound, they decided Caleb was actually 38 weeks and roughly 8lb 9oz. This would become the first of many lies from the hospital staff. We then asked if because she was COVID positive, if they would take him from us as we’ve heard horror stories about this at other hospitals. The nurse assured us this was NO LONGER hospital policy and they would not take him from us and he could stay in the room with her since she contracted COVID while he was still in her womb (lie number 2). With this information, we agreed to deliver Caleb. Once Caleb was delivered, Christy and I were able to hold him for about 10 minutes, and then they laid him in the bassinet in the room. There he waited for 2 hours before the Pediatrician came to see him for his newborn exam. He was not 38 weeks, and he was nowhere near 8lb 9oz. Caleb was born premature at 36 weeks, 6lb 5oz, exactly what Christy and I suspected. There was no pediatric staff members there waiting for Caleb.

They said they wanted to take him to the NICU just to give him a good look over and some observation. This is the last time we saw our newborn son until the day he was discharged from the hospital. A couple times a day for a few days, we asked when we could see him again, when she could breast feed him, as they kept telling us as long as Christy wore a mask, she could breast feed(lie number 3). He never returned for feedings, instead they brought in a breast pump so she could pump her milk for him. Before we go any further, I’d like to make note of the extremely LOOSE PPE policy in the OB ICU. The whole time I was there with my wife, not once was I asked to put on a mask, gloves, or gown while in the room with my wife. This was fine with me as I don’t particularly believe they work anyways. During Christy’s stay in the OB ICU she was given 1 dose of Remdesivr, 1 dose of Sarilumab, and steroids to try to fight the COVID, that’s all.

Christy was moved up to the Adult ICU and I immediately knew something wasn’t right. I was stopped outside of her room and told I had to put on 2 layers of gloves, gown, face shield and face mask before I could even enter the room…completely different than the OB unit. After our numerous attempts to have Caleb brought back to us and no resolution, I began to question their motives. This is where things got bad fast. I quietly asked the nursing staff “If I wear all of this stuff downstairs, can I please go see my son”. The nurse contacted the NICU for clarification and 10 minutes later I was informed that not only could I not go see my son, I was not permitted to see him until I have quarantined myself away from my wife for 14 days since I was exposed to COVID by being around her, the same COVID he’d already been receiving antibodies for while he was in her womb. I was crushed and the nurse was so kind as to inform me of this IN FRONT OF CHRISTY who’s now hysterical because her worst nightmare has come true, they confiscated her child and is now keeping him hostage from us. Thanks guy. The best we could get was a low quality web cam live stream of our son in an incubator ( The parent bond experience has now been stolen from my wife and child.

2 days later, I was informed that Caleb would be ready for discharge on Thursday, October 14th and that I could pick him up myself, but he was not allowed back to see his mother. What happened to 14 days? It was too dangerous for me to be around him before, being around my wife every day, but now they’re fine with it? Instead of picking him up myself, Christy’s mother (Holly Daum) offered to pick Caleb up instead so to avoid any further backpedaling from the hospital and them possibly keeping him from us even longer. They permitted me to visit him before Christy’s mother picked him up so that I could at least see him and hold him. Mind you, I had JUST LEFT CHRISTY’S ICU ROOM. By now, Christy has been taken off of high flow oxygen and put onto a BiPAP machine which is the last step before a ventilator. Her doctor, the ICU Medical Director, Dr Murugan, comes off as very pushy and ventilator happy, already suggesting we should put her on a ventilator…why?

Now with Caleb and the rest of the children safely under Holly’s care(who’s also a UPMC Nurse and COVID survivor May 2021), I was able to focus on being with my wife. At the advice of Holly, We requested a consult with a Pulmanologist. Later that day, I had to ask again about the consult to which we were answered with “we’ll have to check into that for you”. The next day, Dr Murugan returns to explain his position and why the ventilator should be used, and at our request for him to treat Christy’s asthma, he said rudely, “No, it wont cure covid so there’s no point”. I argued with the doctor that I still wanted to speak to a pulmonologist and he very confidently replied “The Pulmonologist is a buddy of mine and will tell you the exact same thing.” I don’t care, I do not accept your visit as a consult and I demand to speak to a pulmonologist. He also told us that she’s already receiving all of the COVID treatments they had to offer and “Trust me, we’re doing everything we can for her” and that “All upmc facilities follow the same COVID protocol”. Holly can attest to the fact this is not true. Two nurses came in after the doctor’s visit and explained to us that Dr Murugan is “well versed” in pulmonology, though he never identified himself as one. I again had to reiterate that I don’t care who he is, he’s not the person we requested and I demand to speak to that person. The nurse said they would arrange it but they wanted to bring a respiratory therapist up first. Sure, why not. Coincidentally, this is one of the same doctors that delivered Caleb down in the OB ICU.Worth noting: I didn’t hear it myself, but Christy said he tapped her leg and called her his “case study” and told me that she’s not a lab rat.

The RT that came agreed to a liquid form of Combivent, but stated she won’t get much out of it since she’s so short of breath.

October 15th. Dr Murugan came to visit again. I watched him walk into the room wearing all of the appropriate PPE, talked with us for about 10 to 15 minutes, and after making contact with my wife physically, rubs his gloves with hand soap, then walks out of the room wearing all of the same (now potentially contaminated) PPE, converses with the nursing staff in the hallway, touching things, and then walks into another patients room across the hall from us wearing all of the same PPE, never changing any of it. Staff is supposed to remove ALL PPE and dispose of it in the patients room before exiting and then they are supposed to sanitize their hands once outside the room before continuing on. This would not be the only time I watch this arrogant doctor do this. I’ve just been informed at 8:30pm that I’m being forced to leave because of visiting hours. Christy is terrified to be left alone. I was told an administrator would be down to explain to me why I need to leave. At 9:45, Jennifer Pribanic, AOD walks in Christy’s room and asks if I have everything I need, now anticipating to be escorted off the property. She then goes further to ask if I need any pillows or blankets. Caught off guard, now I’m confused and I said this is a completely different conversation than I was left with a little bit ago. She assured me that I was not going to be made to leave and that given the entire situation so far, I’m free to stay for as long as I need and that I needed to be here with Christy. FINALLY someone with some sense here! Jennifer asked me if I needed to order food, then noticed it’s past business hours for hospitality and offered to go grab me some food from downstairs anyway. The first kind gesture we’ve seen from Magee.

Wake up the next day and Christy says her chest doesn’t feel as tight and easier to breathe. Doctor has agreed to give Christy a multivitamin since she was taking a prenatal vitamin already before she came here. FINALLY we get to meet the Pulmonologist! He is willing to try a few more things that so far Dr Murugan has refused and 100% agrees her asthma needs to be addressed as COVID will make it worse. He also adds nebulized steroids to her regimen on top of whatever she’s already getting through IV and she may request liquid Albuterol every 2 hours. Nothing more to report this day.

October 17th. Christy was able to eat a normal breakfast using the high flow nasal cannula with oxygen saturations staying in the 80s. Dr Murugan visits again. He again wears the same PPE in multiple patient rooms…how is this ok?

October 18th. Noon time and Christy is being switched back to the high flow cannula for a break from her BiPAP mask. Up to this point, every time they switch her, they turn the heat up on the oxygen machine so that it doesn’t give Christy a brain freeze. Every other respiratory therapist so far has done this without question and upon request. The young girl that came in refused to do so and because of this Christy became uncomfortable and strained to be able to breathe properly. As her nasal passages felt like they were being frozen, her oxygen saturations dropped into the 70s and I had to loudly yell at the respiratory therapist to turn the heat up as it was HURTING Christy to not be warmer. This girl kept insisting it’s the same setting as the BiPAP which I had to yet again yell and explain EVERYONE ELSE turned the head up with the was NOT on the BiPAP because it was too uncomfortable for her. Finally she complied but the damage was already done. Christy couldn’t recover and her oxygen stayed around 70% and she missed her opportunity to eat lunch. Christy’s now quite angry and it takes the rest of the evening just for her to recover from this mishap and the gross air leaks coming from the improperly fitted BiPAP mask. We were told that an acceptable Patient Leak (PT Leak) was as high we 100L/min. This is the last time we would see this respiratory therapist. We’ve been watching the PT Leak as it rose to over 140L/min and she never returned. To give an example of how bad the leak was, I could see around the mask looking down Christy’s nose on either side. Christy’s oxygen levels never went higher than 80%. Now 7:30pm and the new RT comes in to check on Christy. His name is Denny. Denny is VERY good at what he does and quickly identifies the issue and within minutes the leak goes from 140+ down to <10. Thank you Denny. I made sure to convey my gratitude for him being there to others the next morning.

October 19th, 9:56am. It’s a new day and Christy is now starving from missing meals yesterday. We call down to order food for the both of us and we’re informed that Christy is on a liquid only diet? Must be some mistake. The person on the other end checks to make sure, and yep, her diet was changed 30 minutes ago… I demanded to know why from the nursing staff and <nurses name omitted>, bless her heart for dealing with my now overly obvious anger informs us that because of her poor numbers yesterday they decided to put her on the liquid diet so she could stay on the BiPAP mask more to see how she does for the day. Never mind the fact that her condition yesterday was the cause of a neglectful rude staff member. I refused to eat in front of Christy, so we both went without food for the day, even though she insisted I eat something. Christy refused the liquid diet and because she was upset, she just sat staring at the clock all day long, waiting for what torture they’d introduce next. She looks like she’s just giving up, hopeless, like they’ve taken everything away from her. After some heavy discussing between the two of us, she was back on board and turned her anger and frustration towards the doctors that were punishing her and did everything she could to prove them wrong about her. I’ve had enough. It’s time to get some more concrete answers. I asked the staff what is it going to take to get Caleb in here to be with his mother so she could have SOME glimmer of hope. No decisions quite yet, but they would let me know ASAP. This request was made with the new Attending Physician, Dr Preus.

October 20th and we have one of her favorite nurses again. The nurse looked over everything and had a talk with the Attending about Christy and her limited diet and was able to get them to give Christy back her old soft foods diet, wonderful news. She would let us know as soon as the diet is switched over. They’re going to have a meeting at 1130 with me in the family lounge about Christy. We have the meeting and everyone seems to be on the same page for the most part. Administrators and patient relations seem more apt to trying to help out. I don’t have much to ask for at this point other than getting Christy fed and making sure that whoever switches her over from the BiPAP to the high flow, that they warm the air up BEFORE making the switch so that she doesn’t have a hard time breathing and drop. Everyone agrees, but her oxygen saturations need to be in the 90s before they will allow her to eat since she always drops when they switch her over to the high flow. Finally around 3:45pm they give a little and let her eat, so we order her a dinner plate and they give her some OJ to drink in the meantime, she immediately starts to feel better. 4:30 her plate arrives and she cleans the entire tray. Also Dr Preus has received word back from Infectious Disease and the NICU regarding letting Caleb visit. We originally presumed he could come on her 21st day after the start of symptoms which would be around the 25th, but they decided on 21 days from positive test which would be the 28th, with the stipulation that if Christy’s condition declined and the ventilator became a likely scenario, that Caleb may be able to come in sooner so she could at least see him before that would happen. OK, that’s acceptable. 1 more week.

Next day I head home to take care of some things at home and grab some more supplies/snacks/drinks. Christy texts me that she’s being ignored all day and that they didn’t give her the call button which is supposed to be used to call in case she needs something or needs help. At this point she’s already tried taking her leads off so it looks like she’s dead and nobody’s come in at all and she needs help calling in a food order. I call the Nurses desk and the girl that answers tells the nurse to go to her room to hand her the call button. 20 minutes later Christy texts me again sending me a picture of the call button sitting on the shelf next to the bed out of reach. What is going on here??? I call back and the girl says the nurse already went into the room and gave her the call button and says my wife never mentioned anything about ordering food… so the nurse is lying about taking care of my wife? The rest of the day was uneventful so nothing else to report here.

October 22nd, 6 more days until Caleb can come meet mommy. Christy’s oxygen saturation is up to 98/99%, outstanding! She sat up more than she was ever able to before, allowing the weight of her body to pull her diaphragm down to get more oxygen in. She feels great. The plan was to possibly start weaning down the settings on the BiPAP machine, but she dropped a little this morning due to having to roll a lot to go to the bathroom. The beeping from the monitors was giving her small anxiety attacks, so the nurses set it so it would stop alarming inside the room and only out in the hallway for them. Nothing else to report today.

October 23rd. 100% oxygen saturation! Wait, never mind, back down to 90, and now her heart rate and blood pressure are up. Complains of groin burning and pain lower back around kidneys. They take a urine culture and want to take blood cultures, but at this point she’s been poked and prodded so many times she refuses the extra needles. They give her antibiotics anyway. She’s back up in the mid 90s even while trying to carry on conversations with the BiPAP mask on.

October 24th. They tried to get her situated to go to the bathroom again and she dropped down into the 50s and had a really hard time recovering. I was originally going to leave early in the morning to head up to Holly’s to pick up the kids as 2 of the boys had doctors appointments on Monday the 25th, but I couldn’t leave until she was OK enough. I asked Dr Preus if that exception could be made so Caleb could come see his mother because I was concerned how many close calls she had left before she just couldn’t do it anymore. He agreed it might be time and began contacting the other departments for consideration. I would already have the boys later, the plan would be Monday after the doctors appointments to take Caleb in and the rest of the kids would stay home with my parents watching them. I got word from Dr Preus that because she improved later in the day, they decided to hold off to see how she did, so once again the plan was pushed aside and having the kids, I was unable to return to see Christy that night.

October 25th. I take the boys to the doctors office and everything goes well. Update Christy on everything with the boys and I spend the rest of the day with them at home. Video chat with Christy around 11:30pm, she looks good. Alert, responsive, talkative. This is the last time I’d get to talk to her for a while. (as of 11/21/2021 Christy is still sedated and not recovered)

October 26th, I wake up to 3 missed calls from the hospital. It happened, at 7:30 they decided to put her on the ventilator because when they tried to get her situated to go to the bathroom, she dropped way down into the 20s and couldn’t recover. My heart sank. I call the hospital and talk to the nurse practitioner and he says she went willingly as long as she was fully sedated, to which they complied. I call my dad and rush to the hospital as fast as I can.

October 27th to present. With the help of friends, we quickly go to work searching for treatments, medicines, anything that can help her. We found tons of studies on Ivermectin on the Clinical Trials worldwide database, effects of Vitamin C and Quercetin, effects and direct correlation between Vitamin D deficiencies and the length and severity of COVID, and benefits of ZINC, all being NIH publications and I bring these up to the doctors here and they all decline everything stating that none of it will help her and that it’s a waste. I even offered to PAY OUT OF POCKET and they still refused all of it. I’ve never felt more useless in my life. Completely hopeless and helpless to help my wife. I tried invoking the Right To Try law of 2018 and was met with the determination that it was “written for a different era” and that it doesn’t apply to COVID. Even worse, Dr Murugan, Dr Gosman, the Vice President of Medical Affairs, and Elizabeth Dubovi of Patient Relations ambushed us in a “family meeting” and of course we immediately refused to meet with Dr. Murugan as we are now convinced he’s trying to kill Christy. Dr Murugan leaves the room and we’re informed that if we want to have a clinical medical discussion that he has to come back in, if not then we will talk about options for having Christy moved to another facility. The VP of Medical Affairs refuses to have a medical discussion? We’re also informed that should we decide to transfer her out, she is not welcome at ANY OTHER UPMC FACILITY. Basically we are slapped with an order to deal with Murugan who has a serious God complex, or get out. Elizabeth and Dr Gosman declined to having the discussion recorded. We come to an agreement that Dr Murugan is to stay out of Christy’s room and have no direct contact with her or myself, since there would be no other physician made available to us while Dr Murugan is on duty.

I asked Elizabeth to print out some of the studies we found on the vitamins, thinking maybe if the staff read over the NIH publications that it may sway them to reconsider giving Christy extra vitamins. We were met with a hard no once again from Dr Murugan. I was seen by Heather, Nurse Practitioner and Amber, Nurse Lead and I pleaded my case to them, told them again that I will pay out of pocket and that I wanted the doctors refusal of a reasonable request IN WRITING. Heather agreed with me it was a reasonable request just to check her vitamin levels and agreed that if her levels are depleted, there should be no harm in correcting them. Later that day, I see the lab tests for Vitamins A, B6, B12, D3, and E all listed now which means someone signed the orders for them. Hopeful that maybe we were getting somewhere, I later found out it was Heather that signed the orders, not Dr Murugan. Don’t care, still the result I wanted for the day.

Next morning, I’m met by Heather and Amber again, this time with a completely different attitude. I was informed that they would not be supplementing her vitamins regardless of what her levels are because that’s “not something they do”. I didn’t give much of a response as I realized I lost the last battle I had to fight. She literally signed the orders just to shut me up. Faced with the hard truth that my wife might die because nobody with decision making ability gives a damn about my wife and wants to deny her simple basic medical care. I later get Heather alone in Christy’s room for clarification. She agrees with Dr Murugan’s decision not to treat depleted levels. I’m speechless. This woman had the audacity to lie to my face last night and give me false hope. She later catches me out front waiting on my dinner to arrive. I don’t remember what she was saying as I completely ignored her. She then patted me on the shoulder as she was leaving and it took everything in my being to not tell her to not touch me and to get away from me.

October 31st, Halloween. I’m supposed to be trick or treating with my kids, and where am I? Still at my wife’s side even though she’s fully sedated. Why am I still here you ask? Because I’m so terrified that I’ll get a phone call that she died under Dr Murugan’s care that I can’t bring myself to leave. They’ve successfully robbed me of another life experience with my children. Awesome. Also to note, Christy has been running a fever around 102* for a week straight. Infectious Disease came down to see her and switched up her antibiotics and determined she has some form of fungal infection and bacterial infection.

November 1st. Night nurse, <name omitted> confirms that she’s heard from most of the staff that Dr Murugan “is a prick” and can not believe that they’re withholding simple vitamins from Christy.

Worth noting, Every day we get a “Daily plan of care” that’s printed out. Every day it says they’ve ordered compression sleeves for her legs to prevent blood clots. it reads as follows:

“My Blood Clot Prevention Device is: Sequential Compression Device (SCDs)
Your doctor has ordered special leg sleeves (SCDs) to help decrease your risk of getting blood clots. It is important that you wear them at all times when in bed or as ordered by your doctor. To prevent falling, call for your nurse to remove your SCDs before getting up to walk.”

She hasn’t had them even once, nor have they ever been discussed with us, and now they think because of one of her lab results, that she may have a blood clot somewhere.

November 3rd, Today I met with Bill (RT Director) and a Physicians assistant to discuss the risk/benefit of flipping Christy onto her back again, knowing she did not tolerate it well the last time they tried. We all agreed they had to at least try because they need to be able to check her skin for sores, blisters, rashes, and scan her limbs for blood clots since that was now a concern. While they were in the room, I brought up a few concerns with them. First, the last of the SCD’s that are on the daily care plan, but more so, why nobody has verified that the information on the daily care plan is correct and accurate. I asked if anyone actually reads what they print out, and nobody could answer. This doesn’t sit well with me. I told the PA that I had already asked the other members of the nursing staff around 5 times looking for clarification to no avail and she seemed very surprised as this is the first time she had heard of the issue. Bill suggested if I wasn’t getting an answer I could have reached out to him as well and he would look into it, to which I simply responded “after asking 5 people, i’d assume that I wouldn’t have to contact the director of a department that has nothing to do with the question needing answered. He agreed. Adding to this, I shared my concern about what happens if she has clots and the devices that were designed to prevent those clots were never used even though they’re on the paperwork saying they were in use. The PA said she would look into everything and get back to me. It’s now night time, going into the 4th and Christy is doing very well on her back. Oxygen saturation staying in the mid high 90s, temperature is slowly coming down, as is her heart rate.

November 5th, a new day, a new attending physician. Dr White seems like an OK individual. Dr White has removed the leg sleeves from the care plan since they’re not being used and said that the Lovonox she’s on is more than sufficient to prevent clots (though they confirmed she has a superficial clot in her arm). I gave him an NIH article about NAC and though he said he read over the article, he dismissed it as something to be done very early on with covid and would not help at her advanced stage.

Holly talked with Rob, one of the Nurse Practitioners about some of Christy’s compression sores from being prone for so long, giving specific doses for the vitamins she should receive to aid in wound healing. Rob and Dr White did not object from a wound care standpoint.

Nothing exciting over the next few days. No real improvements to speak of.

November 8th. Christy was doing fairly well all things considered. Her oxygen saturation had been staying in the mid-upper 90s with less than 100% oxygen from the ventilator. Randomly her saturation dropped to the high 70s to low 80s and didn’t move. The nurse today wasn’t as attentive as others and also didn’t give her nearly as many bolus of sedatives when Christy was fighting or out of sync with the ventilator. It took all day for her to get back up into the 90s. It seems harder and harder for her to maintain since they took her off the Phenobarbital. Also today we met the new attending for this week (yes another). This attending is about on par with Dr White, her name is Rachel. She agreed to look over the NAC article as I felt Dr White just dismissed it without reading it, and then said she would send it over to the therapeutics committee for review. Around 9pm or so I hear a buildup of fluid in the tubes coming from the ventilator and Christy’s breathing is very fast, close to 50 breaths per minute. Denny comes in and opens where the tubes meet the tube going into Christy’s mouth and drains out the fluid and her breathing slows down immediately. Apparently a buildup of fluid can trigger the ventilator into thinking she’s trying to take another breath when she really isn’t, causing it to force another breath. Good to know.

November 9th. I was invited to join in rounds and they discussed the plans for Christy. A few topics we went over. We discussed the possibility (or lack thereof) of lung transplants if her lungs can’t recover. No hope there, she has to recover first. Discussed what needs to happen for her to have a tracheostomy. Again, she has to recover first. Rachel is concerned about her constant fever and pointed possibly to the central IV line in Christy’s neck. Suggested a midline instead. I advised Rachel that I had already suggested that and that’s when they put in the PICC line instead. Rachel suggested taking out the central and putting in a normal IV line and I advised her that was a terrible idea as Christy has very small veins and IV lines do not last long at all for her. Rachel mentioned possible infection from the line which I pointed out they drew blood cultures just yesterday and she agreed to wait to see what those look like or if the site of the line starts to get red. They decided to remove another sedative, Ketamine.

It’s around 1PM now. I hear a buildup of fluid in the tubes again. This time I grab the nurses to have it drained before it becomes an issue. The nurse instead of opening the tubes to let the fluid out, lifts the hoses to make it flow back down to the machine. As soon as she does this Christy begins a 2 minute long coughing fit where she stops breathing. I believe some of the fluid wet down into Christy’s lungs. They get her suctioned out, give her 2 bolus of Fentanyl and a “push” of “Rock” which is the paralytic they use to stop you from breathing on your own. This wouldn’t normally concern me except the nurse received a phone call from I don’t know who, but she told the person on the other end that they weren’t in the room and Christy randomly dropped into the 50s, completely leaving out the fluid in the tube and how she drained the tube. A little white lie, but a lie none the less and it makes it sound like Christy just randomly started to desaturate.

I’ve now seen at least 4 times today where Christy shows signs of becoming conscious again. The ventilator starts alarming and then I see Christy’s jaw moving, nostrils flaring, and once i saw her eyelids start to open slightly. Every time they have to give her more Versed and more “rock”

November 11th and 12th. I had to go home the past 2 days to take Caleb to his 1 month checkup. First actual good news in a while, he’s perfectly healthy. He quickly caught up to where he should have been at full gestation, now 8lb 6oz, 20.5″ long, almost exactly the same size as Collin at birth, and almost on his due date. Christy unfortunately hasn’t had as good of news. They removed the Versed and put her back on Propofol for sedation. She is stacking her breaths more now so her saturation isn’t as high as before. Vent settings now 18peep at 100% oxygen, barely holding saturations in the upper 80s throughout the night. This morning thankfully her breathing calmed down some and she’s back up to 91-92, but still not as good as previous days.

It’s amazing what you find out when you look through medical records. I requested a copy of all treatments and medications that Christy has received so far and received it last night. According to UPMC COVID protocol, the proper course of Remdesivir is a 6 day course beginning with a 200mg dose, followed by 100mg each following day for 5 days. She received the first 200mg dose and then every subsequent dose was marked “Not appropriate at this time”. So on top of them refusing any other kinds of treatment, they didn’t even finish off the one treatment that they did offer. So much for “We are doing everything that we can for her”

Dr. Betsy Eads, a Frontline Doctor reached out to me this morning with some things we need to be doing and demanding. Hopefully it helps because this hospital is killing my wife.

Tonight they came in to try to replace her central line in her neck with another picc line in her right arm. The ultrasound nurse did an ultrasound and couldn’t find one of the veins they usually use, the second vein was way too small (surprise surprise) and the 3rd while big enough already carries a higher risk of clotting because of it’s location and how it routes through the shoulder area. This coupled with the fact she already has a clot in left arm, puts her at even higher risk of clotting more and the IV nurse told me that she could place the picc no problem, but she’d be really upset for Christy if she had to come back in 2 days to remove it because it clotted so fast. Christy’s nurse confirmed there’s nothing wrong with the central line, they just want it out as it’s a possible source of infection. The Resident again was suggesting a normal IV but the IV nurse highly advised against that for a couple reasons. She has tiny veins and standard IV’s will fail for Christy, and Propofol is an irritant and would cause burning sensation in her arm since there isn’t enough blood flow to quickly dissipate the medicine. Thank you to the IV nurse for sharing that information. I guess they’ll have to try something else.

Something to note, they keep checking her glucose level, and she’s consistently in the 160-180 range. I questioned this, being that I’m diabetic and I know what range I stay in and what a “normal” human is supposed to be. I was told 160-180 is perfect when in ICU and they do not give insulin below 200 for ICU patients. Resident says they used to and patients did worse. Holly contradicts this though, saying wounds can’t heal properly with high blood sugar. Labs all say normal range is 70-99, I’ve always went with 80-120, some doctors have told me 100-150 for a diabetic.

November 13th. Overnight was uneventful. Ventilator settings are still the same. They had her Fentanyl down to 250 but overnight increased it to 350 which is still lower than a couple days ago at 400. Currently waiting on rounds. Nurse this morning tried to draw labs from the central line and unfortunately it’s not giving blood return so she tried to draw blood in Christy’s hand. Of course her veins were too small to hit even with the ultrasound machine to help.

November 14th. They attempted to turn her head so they could move her central line from one side of her neck to the other, concerned it’s a possible infection source and now, is not giving a blood return for labs. When they tried to turn her head, she quickly desaturated down into the 40s and was in very bad shape. Seems a shared concern is no longer when will she get better, but when will her body give up. For what it’s worth, a lot of the nursing staff seems genuinely concerned and upset for her. The resident mentioned the drop could have possibly been caused by a cuff leak around the tube when they tried moving her head. Now she’s flipped back on her stomach again and saturation is better, but she’s paralyzed again. Back to square one, the last 3 weeks a complete waste and setback.

November 16th. Today wasn’t a terrible day. They moved the tube 1cm down further in her throat. The theory is because the tube has been in place for so long, that the cuff at the end of the tube that seals her airway off may have slightly deformed her trachea causing the leak and her saturation dropping when they try moving her. Seems logical. Looks like that was the issue. She’s been in the 90s all day even with them lowering vent settings throughout the day. It’s now 10:45pm and they went from 100% oxygen and 18 peep down to 85% and 16 and she’s still at a saturation in the low 90s. Perfectly acceptable. Far from out of the woods, but at least she’s not going backwards again.

November 18th. Yesterday I had to leave the hospital to go home and restock my meds, meal prep, do laundry and finally see a chiropractor. They flipped Christy onto her back for a little bit around 10:30 and she did ok. Around 2:30 she didn’t seem to be tolerating it well so they flipped her back to her stomach again. She remained that way the rest of the night, over night being on 85% oxygen with saturations in the mid lower 90s. This morning they decided to flip her again and as of 12:30 her saturation is 91, though they have her back up to 100% oxygen. Let’s see how the rest of the day goes. Worth noting: Last night I received more of her medical records and spent a few hours going through them all. Nothing jumps out at me. Still doesn’t add up how she went from being perfectly fine around 5am to being extremely anxious at 6am and having to go on a ventilator at 7am because her oxygen saturation plummeted…I just don’t understand what caused her to go south so fast. Nurses note says at 6 Christy complained that the BiPAP was giving her cold air, which could cause anxiety…no more mention of this after that.

November 19th. Last night was quite emotional for me. Christy had been doing well, oxygen saturations staying in the mid-low 90s. I went to go grab something to drink from the vending machine outside the ICU and when I came back in, I noticed that her oxygen was down to 87-88 which isn’t terrible, but odd that it was fine moments before. I sat my drinks down and stood beside her hospital bed and was watching her. I noticed the usual little things like her slightly breathing over the ventilator, which would indicate she wasn’t 100% paralyzed. Not a big deal, she’s not fighting it, so why rock the boat…wait a minute…her eyebrows are moving around…that’s not supposed to happen. I said her name out loud and she stopped moving. I asked her if she could hear me, and if she could if she could move her toes. No response. I asked her if she could move her eyebrows AND SHE DID. I was blown away. I wasn’t totally sure it wasn’t just coincidence so I asked her a couple questions that would require a yes/no answer and each yes question she moved her eyebrows again. A wave of joy and happiness rushed over my entire being and I started crying and telling her how much i loved her, assuring her I’ve been here the whole time and that I miss her so much. First time in over 3 weeks I’ve actually had a visual response from talking to my wife. Sure it wasn’t verbal BUT WE TALKED TO EACH OTHER! I run and grab the nurse to tell her about it, and she said she thought she saw Christy moving her eyebrows a little while ago but didn’t put any thought into it. She comes in and also asks Christy to move her toes, nothing. Asks her to move her fingers, nothing. Asks her to “move your eyebrows like you did for your husband” and she did…even the nurse was floored. Only problem is, now we know she’s awake and aware, and knows she’s paralyzed and probably freaking out. They increased her sedative and paralytic so she’s out again. It was a beautiful moment while it lasted, but it’s a good sign for now.

Nothing really new this morning. Still on her back, saturation still in the 90s. They’re turning off the paralytic right now to see how she tolerates it. She’ll still be sedated but at least now she wont be paralyzed.

November 21st. Today is the last day Dr Preus will be the attending until after Christmas. He (respectfully) hopes he doesn’t have to see us when he comes back. Christy is holding steady. Eyes open half way, some very slight movement left/right, blinking is still a little slow. Some head and shoulder movement but that’s about it, she’s still very sedated. OH, and she just moved her fingers finally. Oxygen has been holding pretty well as well, now at 85% on the ventilator and her saturation in the low 90s. She recovers a little easier from coughing. Still a very long way to go before she’s out of here, but I’ll take it…Next concern…It’s Thanksgiving week, Caleb has his pictures Tuesday, Emma is having lasagna with my parents as well, back and forth travel with the kids a lot this week. I’m staying with Christy as much as I can this week though because Murugan is back tomorrow. I genuinely fear for her life when he’s here… I know most of Tuesday and wednesday I’ll be gone. Some of the family works Thanksgiving so plan is over weekend sometime, so I’m staying here Thursday…Please pray Murugan keeps his talons off my wife and she stays safe.

November 25th. Thanksgiving. So the past few days have been better than most. Christy is completely aware of her surroundings. She’s now moving fingers independently and hands at the wrist, both feet wiggle around a bit, very clear yes/no head movements, shoulder shrugs, lifting her arms a small amount, eyes actually moving better as well. She spent a couple days with the respirator set to spontaneous, which means it only delivers a breath when she initiates it. She’s doing the bulk of her own breathing like this which is great, breathing about 20 times a minute, and the vent set to 80% 16 peep. Complete night and day from last week.

Caleb had his newborn photos Tuesday. Holly was phenomenal as always. But here’s the best news so far….. After Caleb’s photos, we went straight to the hospital and Mommy and baby boy were finally reunited (that Christy can remember). It was a emotional time for all of us. Caleb was fussy until I laid him in her arms, then he calmed right down and fell asleep laying on mommy. It was a beautiful thing to see, after all the hospital’s put her through.

Christy wears Color Street nails and Friday her nurse noticed that she was wearing a set as she also wears them. She said she had a set of Thanksgiving strips from last year she would bring in and redo Christy’s nails for her. Her and 2 other nurses Sunday night took off all of her old nail strips and applied the new strips for her. This is way more than going above and beyond…and it meant a lot to me they would do this for her. God bless you ladies.

For what it’s worth, the nursing staff has been the best part of our time here so far, and I respect each and every one of the nurses that have taken care of Christy. Maybe I don’t say it enough, but I hope these ladies know how much I appreciate everything they do for her. It’s not their fault that those with decision making power will ‘uphold the systems values’ and treat patients like numbers and dollar signs instead of treating patients as individuals, with more personalized treatment… Yeah. Cookie cutters only work in baking. Sorry, not sorry.

November 26th. Yesterday most of the day Christy’s saturation was in the mid 80s but as the evening progressed, she kept dropping lower, eventually hitting the mid-low 70s. They decided to paralyze her again and put her back on her stomach. She’s now back in the mid 80s. As much as I hate this place and those in charge, nobody is to blame this time, I saw it all happen myself. All we can do is watch and wait and pray she turns around again.

November 29th. Looks like we are seeing the beginning of the end. Yesterday Christy’s saturation dropped and they did a chest xray. Found out she has a pneumothorax which is air stuck between the lung and lining. They put in a chest tube. All of this began around 8am. This hospital, felt it was perfectly ok to wait FOUR HOURS before contacting me! Here comes the rant…

So I have a little secret. Magee has been aware of the existence of the website and Facebook page. They sent out a mass email to the ENTIRE ICU STAFF as well as the MDs and some administration. The email originated from Brittany, don’t have last name on her, advising staff not to talk about it, comment on it, or share it and to uphold the systems values, but someone was checking it regularly. I’ve known about the email since Tuesday, but didn’t let them know. 

So, you mean to tell me, that this hospital has no problem watching me and what I post/say/share, but couldn’t have the foresight to tell me my wife was crashing, FOR FOUR HOURS!!!!!??? This is BEYOND unacceptable! I asked if I should be coming back and they said they would let me know. I’m hours away from the hospital and unable to drive myself there. The hospital calls me again a few hours later to inform me Christy’s heart had stopped but they were able to restart it, and that I should consider coming back. Thank God her sister Kat was there and able to take me there. We get there and they stop us at the front desk, holding us there because “security has to escort us up”… Now my blood starts to boil. We get up to the unit and a there’s 2 people with her I don’t remember who, but I laid into them, and I made sure the level of dissatisfaction was well understood. Come to find out they shut off all sedation and giving nothing for pain…my wife has spent all day, literally over 12 hours, laying here awake and aware and most likely in a lot of pain. I quickly asked why they were off and nurses put them back on. I don’t remember much of the rest of the night after that.

This morning her SATs are up again but now it seems her kidneys are failing. It’s just a countdown to the end at this point it seems.

November 30th. Things are looking worse. Her kidneys are failing, liver function decreasing, potassium is climbing and there’s no sign of it stopping. They installed a dialysis port and will begin treatment in the morning…long shot but worth trying.

December 1st. I slept at her bedside in a chair, holding her hand all night. Her hand was cold and clammy. I haven’t seen her eyes, eyebrows or lips move all day. Things are getting rapidly worse. Her temperature which used to be a fever is now turning into hypothermia. Her face is now lifeless and her pupils are fixed wide open and dilated. She’s no longer breathing over the ventilator, it’s like she was on a paralytic again, but she wasn’t. She just lay there, still as a tree with no breeze. Her kidneys seem to be responding to the dialysis, but now her liver quit and her blood sugar is quickly dropping to dangerous levels and her blood pressure keeps dropping. This is bad. As the hours wind down, her temperature, heart rate, and blood pressure keep dropping. They give her two IV meds to bring her blood pressure back up, but it’s just a bandaid for what we now realize will be a permanent problem. She’s already gone. All that’s left is a heartbeat, the only organ that didn’t completely give up already. The meds are maxed out now and can’t go any higher, her heart rate and blood pressure are continuing to fall. 70 beats becomes 60, becomes 50, becomes 40. After this, it comes much quicker. We all say our goodbyes and Holly, Kat, Jayme (her oldest daughter) and I all are holding her hand, shoulder, etc as her heart rate slows below 20 beats per minute until it just stops. It is now 8:09pm and my wife is now gone for good. A life wasted that didn’t need to be, all because of a health system and doctors/administrators that care more about profits than actually taking care of people. Let this be a lesson to you all. NEVER trust your loved ones to ANY UPMC facility if you value their lives, and for God’s sake, don’t ever go to Magee Women’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, PA.

In closing, on behalf of my family, I would like to personally thank all of the following people for giving my wife every chance they could with the limited tools they were given. Macey, Ricki, Andrea, Jenna, Jenny, Cole, Eponine, Amber, Marissa, Bill(RT), Denny(RT), Bill(RT director), Dr White, Dr Preus, and the rest of the nurses who’s names I regretfully can’t remember right now. God bless you all, and thank you for every last moment you gave me with my wife.

Christy, the love of my life, mother of my 3 children, and my best friend. We didn’t get nearly enough time together. What was supposed to be a lifetime, was barely over 6 years. You are my rock, my life, my world, and my everything. I can’t imagine life without you but I guess I don’t have the choice anymore. I’m going to miss you so much. I may have failed to protect you from this, and I am so sorry for that, but you have my word, your children WILL know you and WILL remember you. I am so thankful that you had the opportunity to finally see and hold Caleb, he’s such a beautiful baby boy and I hope you have some peace knowing he still remembers you even tough this prison took your time with him away. I will always remember you, always love you and always miss you. Till death do us part just ain’t enough. Until we meet again beautiful, I love you, so much. You will forever be my always.

This will be the last entry of Christy’s story. I dedicate this website in her memory. Thank you all for listening and God Bless.

Christy Leigh Cresto, 33 of Export, passed away Wednesday, December 1, 2021 at Magee Women’s Hospital in Oakland, PA.

Born January 30, 1988 in Pittsburgh, PA, she was the daughter of Holly S, (Scott) Daum and the late Harold H. Daum, II

Christy was a housewife and mother. She was involved with the PTO at Franklin Regional Elementary School and competitive cheerleading. Christy enjoyed gymnastics, horses, crafts, interior decorating, writing, cooking, baking cookies and most of all she was devoted to her family with all her Love.

Surviving is her husband of 5 years: Matthew J. Cresto who she married March 13, 2016; two daughters: Jayme Hinkle and Emma Hinkle; three sons: Collin, Carter and Caleb Cresto; one sister: Kathleen Kahle and her husband James of Leeper, PA; Father and Mother-in-Law: John and Andrea Cresto of Greensburg, PA.

Family and friends are invited to a visitation for Christy on Friday, December 10, 2021 from 5:00 – 8:00 PM and on Saturday, December 11, 2021 from 1:00 – 3:00 PM at the Thompson-Miller Funeral Home, 124, E. North Street, Butler, PA 16001.

A funeral service will be held following viewing on Saturday at 3:00 PM with Pastor Don Walczak of Cornerstone Ministries, Murrysville, PA at the funeral home.

In Lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Fight for Christy, 6407 Hilty Road, Export, PA 15632.

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If Christy’s story touched your heart, we urge you to share the story with your family and friends to spread the word about what corporate medicine is all about. If you’re able to, your donations will help other families in need that have been affected by COVID. Anything you can do is a blessing and we thank you. Click the link below to see how you can help.get involved

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[New post] Defending the Blessed Mother: Let the Holy Spirit be your guide

Roma Locuta 3:15 PM (12 minutes ago)
New post on Roma Locuta EstDefending the Blessed Mother: Let the Holy Spirit be your guideby Edward J. BarrDecember 6, 2021 (Edward J. Barr) – Recently a friend and I attended a Medical Freedom conference in a nearby town. The event brought together medical professionals and others concerned about the censorship and suppression of individual liberties that prevent citizens from following their conscience and personal health realities in making medical decisions.  It was held at an evangelical church and speakers included a few Protestant pastors who in addition to medical freedom had issues with the abortion tainted nature of all COVID injections. The Pastor that hosted the conference spoke about the freedoms that formed the United States, faith over fear, and the unity we must have when our liberties are at risk.  His Church had never closed during the entire COVID “pandemic.”  He felt it was critical to keep the doors open to those who needed spiritual support in stressful times. Everything he said was completely orthodox from a Catholic perspective. It was the “sermon” I wish I had heard at least once in a Catholic Church.After several doctors and other health practitioners spoke another Protestant pastor came to the podium.  He was with a group called the “Black Robe Regiment.” The snapshot of the group claimed it hearkened back to the Revolutionary War when certain pastors shed their black robes after preaching and entered the breach to fight for freedom.  I was intrigued.   The Pastor had the stereotypical deep voice and high hair.  He gave a robust recap of the exploits of some of the Protestant Pastors that he and his group hoped to emulate.  Then he stated there was one thing that the Evangelical community needed to do – forcefully confront the scourge of abortion.  He was singing our tune.  Then he stated something really shocking.  The Pastor said that the evangelicals needed to follow the efforts of the Catholic Church.  So far so good.  Then it happened.  He asked, “Imagine if we all prayed in front of abortion clinics, bringing the blood of Jesus to stop this tragedy.  All the Catholics do is pray the rosary, and what good can that do?”  Instantly, our hearts were saddened.  We were hurt and upset.  The last sanctioned prejudice in the US – anti-Catholicism – reared its ugly head.  My friend and I looked at each other and shook our heads.  Whatever he said after that statement evaded us.  We knew this was an evangelical event; my friend had heard about it from an evangelical friend, and we only found one other Catholic in the audience of 300 people.  It was evident that the Pastor didn’t know any of “us” were in attendance.  While the rest of the conference was informative, we made sure to leave the room whenever another Pastor took to the microphone.  While I was debating what other steps to take, my friend told me, “I have to talk to him.”  I sensed trouble.  It doesn’t go well when one of Mary’s girls hears an attack against the rosary.  I watched the Pastor for the rest of the afternoon, wondering (hoping?) that he would leave the conference early.  No such luck.  By the end of the day almost half of the people had departed.  The final session was praise and worship.  The moment the last song ended my friend grabbed my arm and said, “let’s go”.  We walked to the front of the auditorium.  The Pastor was amid about four or five other Protestant ministers.  We approached him and asked to speak with him.  He agreed.  My friend told him that he had hurt us deeply when he insulted the rosary, that it was praying with Mary to our Lord, and that no one loves Mary more than her son.  He stood there in silence, hoping we would go away quietly after blowing off some steam.  When he said the rosary wasn’t biblical, we offered to meet with him to explain what it is and why Catholics practice the devotion.  Then he uttered the words that made his arrogance and hostility make sense. “I know, I was raised Catholic. I went to Catholic school.”  No surprise there.  I told him that he wasn’t properly catechized, as I wasn’t when I went to Catholic school as a child.  More importantly, we informed him that our county has no abortion clinics precisely because of faithful Catholics praying the rosary.  While I was responding with my head, my friend resumed her impassioned defense of Mary from the heart.  She told him that his statement caused division in the Body of Christ, that humility was the way to holiness, and that if he ever said that statement in public, he would be thrusting a knife into Catholics’ hearts.”  The pastor then stated, “I don’t even know why I said it.”  My friend continued.  “It is because you are used to dismissing Catholics.”  She then affirmed to him that we need to be in the Pro-life fight together.  Then she looked him in the eye and pointed at him.  “Pastor,” she said.  “I forgive you.”  He bowed his head in the first sign of humility that he had displayed throughout the conversation.  The other ministers watched in silence.We were both full of joy both as we walked up the aisle to the exit.  “How did you know what to say?” I asked my friend.  She smiled.  “I didn’t.  I didn’t have any idea of what I would say to defend Mary and the rosary.  I just asked the Holy Spirit to guide me.”  In our times of rampant secularism, it is often easier to go along to get along.  The Church in America has done so well in Americanizing itself that its members believe just like most any other religious group.  We need to be American Catholics instead of Catholic Americans.  Anti-Catholic prejudice happens everywhere.  Some Catholics believe some of the anti-Church propaganda, or don’t know the faith, and don’t want to defend the Church.  Others hope that by silent witness they will change minds and hearts.  Yet most people believe silence is consent.  Lies against the Church must be confronted.  How and when to do it is a matter of prudential judgement. We must be discerning when deciding what action to take in the face of attacks against Christ, His Church, and His mother.  The best advice is, let the Holy Spirit guide you.Edward J Barr is a Catechist, an attorney, an intelligence officer, a Marine, and a university faculty member. He earned a Master of Theology degree from the Augustine Institute. Mr. Barr is a contributing writer for the Roma Locuta Est blog ( J. Barr | December 6, 2021 at 9:15 pm | Categories: Uncategorized | URL:
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Print allIn new windowLetter #165, 2021, Mon, Dec 5: The Nathanson Files, Tape #1InboxDr. Robert Moynihan via 12:28 PM (1 hour ago)to me    Letter #165, 2021, Mon, Dec 5: The Nathanson Files, Tape #1    In these days before Christmas 2021 — days in expectation of the birth 2,000 years ago of humanity’s Savior — debate is intensifying in the US Supreme Court over when precisely the life of an unborn child begins, from which moment the child would acquire that equal protection under the law that the US Constitution protects. For reports on this see these links: PBSSCOTUS Blog, and USCCB.    As a contribution to the reflection on this fundamental question of human rights and human dignity, we are offering a series we call “The Nathanson Files,” in which I interview the founder and head of the Hosea Project, Terry Beatley, who more than a decade ago made a promise to Dr. Bernard Nathanson (link) to make his story known to the world. In these files, Terry tells the amazing story of Dr. Nathanson, once one of America’s leading abortion doctors, then, after a shattering experience of profound intellectual and spiritual conversion, one of America’s leading “pro-life” doctors.    Here is a link to the article Terry Beatley wrote in the October 2020 issue of Inside the Vatican magazine. America’s “Abortion King” (Dr. Bernard Nathanson) and the “Catholic Strategy”. You can purchase the October 2020 issue at this link.    ***    We are now beginning our Christmas fund-raising drive. We hope to raise $30,000 between now and December 31 to support these letters, interviews, videos, and analyses during the upcoming year. Please go to this link to make your donation.    Above left, the late Dr. Bernard Nathanson (1926-211) meets US President Ronald Reagan; center, Dr. Nathanson and St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta; right, Dr. Nathanson meets Pope John Paul II   I sat down for an interview with Terry Beatley, author of “What if We’ve Been Wrong?” and president of the Hosea Initiative, discussing how the abortion industry has deceived Catholics. The first part of this interview has been posted and is now available on Rumble (link) and YouTube (link).     All of the tapes from this interview will be posted on our Rumble channel and YouTube channel so be sure to subscribe and turn on notifications to ensure you do not miss any content.    Click the video below for the first part of the interview in which Terry Beatley describes her initial meeting with Dr. Nathanson, who was “the father of America’s industry of abortion.” 
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Dobbs and fate of conservative legal movement; CA6 en banc rehearing in TN abortion case; CA6 en banc divide on Chevron/criminal law; and more


Ed Whelan <> Unsubscribe12:29 PM (1 hour ago)
to me

From NRO’s Bench Memos:


December 6, 2021 10:49 AM

In a City Journal essay, law professor Joel Alicea (whose work I’ve had ample occasion to praise) soundly observes of the pending Dobbs case:

This, then, is the moment the conservative legal movement has fought to bring about. If the Court fails to overrule Roe, the ruling will likely shatter the movement, and while (under a proper conception of the judicial role) the potential effect of Dobbs on the conservative legal movement should be irrelevant to the outcome in that case, it would be a significant legacy of the Roberts Court if Dobbs brought an end to one of the most successful intellectual and political projects of the past half-century.

Alicea explores the “intellectual tensions with the conservative legal movement—present since its inception and now coming to the fore.” He identifies and discusses two major tensions. One is an “intra-originalist tension … between those who saw originalism as a means to achieving some other substantive end [most prominently, judicial restraint] and those for whom it was the only legitimate constitutional methodology.” The second tension involves “disagree[ment] about whether originalism rests on a sufficiently robust moral foundation.”

Alicea forecasts that the decision in Dobbs “will likely either increase those tensions to the point of rupture”—if, that is, the Court fails to overturn Roe—“or greatly alleviate them.” He bracingly warns:

If the Court fails to overrule Roe and Casey, there is a very good chance that [Adrian] Vermeule would become the most important intellectual figure in whatever succeeds the current conservative legal movement.

Sixth Circuit Grants En Banc Rehearing in Tennessee Abortion Case


December 6, 2021 12:23 PM

I’m pleased to see that the Sixth Circuit last week, on the same day as oral argument in Dobbsgranted en banc review in Memphis Center for Reproductive Health v. Slatery.

The case involves a challenge by abortion providers to two provisions of Tennessee law. One provision (section 216) bars abortion, except in the event of a medical emergency, at cascading intervals—detection of heartbeat, 8 weeks gestational age, 10 weeks, 12 weeks, 15 weeks, 18 weeks, 20 weeks, 21 weeks, 22 weeks, 23 weeks, and 24 weeks—and provides that any interval determined to be unenforceable shall be severed from the law. The second provision (section 217) forbids anyone from performing an abortion if that person “knows that the woman is seeking the abortion because of” the sex or race of the unborn child or “because of a prenatal diagnosis … indicating Down syndrome.”

The Sixth Circuit panel opinion in September was unanimous that section 216 was barred by Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, even as Judge Amul Thapar wrote a powerful opinion explaining how wrong those precedents are. The panel divided on the anti-discrimination provision: the majority ruled that section 217 is unenforceable, while Judge Thapar dissented, pointing out (among other things) that earlier in the year the en banc Sixth Circuit had upheld “Ohio’s nearly identical anti-discrimination law.” (As Thapar points out, “Tennessee added race and gender to the protected class,” but those additions have nothing to do with the majority’s grounds of objection.)

It’s a safe bet that the Sixth Circuit granted en banc review primarily for the purpose of revisiting the section 217 ruling but realized, now that Dobbs is pending in the Supreme Court, that it ought to hold the section 216 ruling for possible re-examination as well. My guess is that the Sixth Circuit will not act on the case until the Court rules in Dobbs. Section 216 will be unenforceable in the meantime. Section 217, as I understand it, remains in effect, as a Sixth Circuit motions panel issued a stay pending appeal of the district court’s preliminary injunction as to that provision. (I’m told that Tennessee, evidently eager to have crystal clarity on the matter, has just asked the Sixth Circuit for an identical stay.)

The cascading provisions of section 216 also highlight what a foolish exercise it would be for the Court in Dobbs to say that Mississippi’s 15-week bar is okay without being able to draw a principled line that would substitute for the arbitrary line of viability. Such a delaying action would just ensure that cases like Tennessee’s would move quickly through the pipeline to the Court. Once again, there is no coherent middle ground in Dobbs, and the only legitimate option is for the Court to overturn Roe and Casey.

Important En Banc Sixth Circuit on Whether Criminal Statutes Receive Chevron Deference


December 6, 2021 1:19 PM

In an order last Friday (in Gun Owners of America v. Garland), the en banc Sixth Circuit reported that it had divided evenly, eight to eight, on the question whether the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (widely known as ATF) properly classified a bump stock as a machine gun as defined by 26 U.S.C. § 5845(b). Such a divide results in the affirmance of the judgment below. In this case, that means that the district court’s ruling denying plaintiff’s request for a preliminary injunction against ATF stands.

Fourteen of the sixteen judges who took part in the case issued or joined opinions that explained their position. Notably, they divided seven to seven, broadly along ideological lines, on the question whether ATF is entitled to Chevron deference in interpreting the criminal provision at issue.

Under Chevron deference, if a statute is ambiguous, the administrative agency charged with applying the statute is entitled to adopt a reasonable interpretation of the statute, even if that interpretation is not the best interpretation. Chevron deference most commonly arises in the civil context, and its application in the criminal context would seem in tension with the rule of lenity, which holds that where a criminal statute is ambiguous, the most lenient interpretation of that statute should be adopted.

I have not yet had time to read the competing opinions with care. I offer here an excerpt from Judge Eric Murphy’s opinion (joined by six of his conservative colleagues):

Since the early days of our Republic, it has been a bedrock legal principle that our government cannot criminalize conduct and send people to prison except through democratically passed laws that have made it through both Houses of Congress and been signed by the President. Yet the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) has sought to ban “bump stocks” in a far different way: through a regulation adopted by a federal agency alone….

The circuit courts that have upheld the Bump-Stock Rule have not suggested that the ATF’s contrary view “is the better reading of the statute.” Indeed, they have not even felt the need to ask which is the better reading. Id. They have instead held that they must review the ATF’s reading under Chevron’s “two-step” approach….

I find three problems with this approach. First, the courts justify their use of Chevron with irrelevant cases that interpret statutes expressly delegating power to an agency to enact criminal regulations. Second, the courts wrongly expand Chevron’s domain by holding that Congress impliedly delegated to the Attorney General the power to interpret a criminal law merely because it gave him a general authority to enact regulations. Third, even under Chevron’s regime, the courts improperly find ambiguity without attempting to figure out the statute’s meaning.

Murphy goes on to explain (among other things) that courts must apply the rule of lenity at Chevron’s step one in order to determine whether it resolves any ambiguity in the criminal statute. In other words, the rule of lenity can operate to render unambiguous, for purposes of Chevron, a criminal provision that would otherwise be ambiguous.

This Day in Liberal Judicial Activism—December 5


December 5, 2021 8:00 AM

1984—No legal text can ever be clear enough to avoid being subverted by a liberal judicial activist. Consider future-Eleventh Circuit judge Rosemary Barkett’s ruling for a Florida appellate court in State v. Bivona.

Florida’s speedy-trial rule generally provided that every person charged with a felony shall be brought to trial within 180 days of the charge or be forever protected from prosecution on that charge. Under an express exception ((b)(1)) to the rule, a “person who is … incarcerated in a jail or correctional institution outside the jurisdiction of this State … is not entitled to the benefit of this Rule until that person returns or is returned to the jurisdiction of the court within which the Florida charge is pending.” But Barkett rules that the 180-day period for a person who had been charged with bank robbery in Florida ran while he was incarcerated in California, as she reads into the (b)(1) exception the additional requirement that the person have been incarcerated on charges pending in the other state.

Some two years later, the Florida Supreme Court unanimously reverses Barkett’s ruling. “The language of (b)(1),” it concludes, “is without ambiguity…. Clearer language than this is difficult to envisage. Yet the lower court [i.e., Barkett] puts a gloss on it, unwarranted by anything that appears in [the speedy-trial rule].”

2002—Liberal judicial activists, usually so dismissive of originalist jurisprudence, will resort to originalist, or at least originalist-sounding, arguments when it suits them.

In a lengthy historical exegesis in Silveira v. Lockyer, Ninth Circuit judge Stephen Reinhardt concludes that the Second Amendment does not confer any individual right to own or possess any firearms but instead “affords only a collective right.” Among other things, Reinhardt determines that the term “bear arms” “generally referred to the carrying of arms in military service—not the private use of arms for personal purposes,” and that the term “keep” (in “keep and bear arms”) was not broader in scope than “bear.”

Dissenting months later from the denial of rehearing en banc, Judge Alex Kozinski observes:

“Judges know very well how to read the Constitution broadly when they are sympathetic to the right being asserted.… When a particular right comports especially well with our notions of good social policy, we build magnificent legal edifices on elliptical constitutional phrases—or even the white spaces between lines of constitutional text.… But, as the panel amply demonstrates, when we’re none too keen on a particular constitutional guarantee, we can be equally ingenious in burying language that is incontrovertibly there. It is wrong to use some constitutional provisions as spring-boards for major social change while treating others like senile relatives to be cooped up in a nursing home until they quit annoying us.”

In another opinion dissenting from the denial of rehearing en banc, Judge Andrew Kleinfeld (joined by Kozinski and two other judges) criticizes Reinhardt for “swim[ming] against a rising tide of legal scholarship to the contrary, relying heavily on a single law review article”—by a former Reinhardt clerk, as it happens—“that claims ‘keep and bear’ means the same thing as ‘bear,’ which itself means only to carry arms as part of a military unit.” “The military meaning,” Kleinfeld acknowledges, “is certainly among the meanings of ‘bear,’ as is ‘large, heavily built, furry, four-legged mammal,’ and ‘investor pessimistic about the stock market.’ But the primary meaning of ‘bear’ is ‘to carry,’ as when we arrive at our host’s home ‘bearing gifts’ and arrive at the airport ‘bearing burdens.’” And “keep,” Kleinfeld points out, has the primary meaning of “to retain possession of”—and poses an interpretive challenge only for “those who have chosen in advance to evade the ordinary meaning of the word.” Kleinfeld also explains that the phrase “the right of the people”—which Reinhardt “simply skips over”—refers to an individual right in the usage of the Bill of Rights.

In June 2008, in District of Columbia v. Heller, all nine justices will reject Reinhardt’s “collective right” position (even as they split 5-4 on the scope of the individual Second Amendment right).

2008—Montana trial judge Dorothy McCarter rules (in Baxter v. Montana) that the provisions of the Montana constitution that state that the “dignity of the human being is inviolable” and that set forth a “right of individual privacy” confer a constitutional right to physician-assisted suicide. Never mind the longtime prohibition in Montana law, and Anglo-American law more generally, on assisted suicide.

One year later, the Montana supreme court will decline to ratify McCarter’s constitutional frolic, as a narrow majority instead misconstrues Montana statutory law to protect a physician from prosecution for aiding a person to commit suicide.

2017—Federal district judge William Alsup files in the Supreme Court his own brief disputing the federal government’s motion for a stay of his order that would have required it to disclose all documents bearing on its rescission of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (“DACA”) policy. Two weeks later, in a unanimous opinion, the Court will grant the government’s motion.

2018—No Catholics need apply? In written questions following his hearing, Democratic senators Kamala Harris and Mazie Hirono grill Brian C. Buescher, a nominee to a district-judge seat in Nebraska, about his membership in the Knights of Columbus, the world’s largest Catholic fraternal organization.

In response, Democratic congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard will strongly condemn Hirono and Harris for “fomenting religious bigotry.” (In July 2019, the Senate will confirm Buescher’s nomination.)

M. Edward Whelan III
Distinguished Senior Fellow and

Antonin Scalia Chair in Constitutional Studies
Ethics and Public Policy Center
1730 M Street N.W., Suite 910
Washington, D.C. 20036

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St. Nathaniel

December 6, 2021

“They have chosen silence,

These to whom the Deposit of Faith was trusted.

They have chosen silence—

Orderly lines,

Circumspect behavior,

Tails tucked between their legs,

Retreating from battle.

We would not recognize them,

Those of us who defended the Deposit of Faith then,

As keepers of the truth now.

Ah silence— 

When communing with the Lord,

Silence is golden,

For to hear His words is of the utmost importance.

And what could we say that would be of any importance then?

Ah—but when dealing with sin,

With heresy and with attacks on the faith,

Silence is the choice of cowards,

For has not the Lord given you a voice for moments such as this?

The Lord has agreed to be among you,

And when you sit with Him,

To choose silence is the best choice indeed.

O but when men would count as naught His very presence,

And not only cast what is sacred before swine,

But offer it to them on a silver platter,

Then silence becomes the sound of souls perishing.

These men have chosen silence.

Pilate washed his hands in silence.

Infants are murdered in silence.

The world slides into darkness in silence.

O these silent men,

Loving order and pompous ceremony,

Loving comfort and elevated circumstance,

O these men of silence.

It was a silent night before the Christ child arrived,

Before the angels pierced the night with their songs,

Heralding His arrival.

And it will be a silent night before the archangels draw their swords,

And their battle cries pierce the night,

Heralding the arrival of the King,

And the fall of these silent men.”


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Print allIn new windowReception of the mRNA vaccine is a grave sin and incurrs an expulsion from the Church (+video) <>Attachments1:41 PM (4 minutes ago)to meBCP: Those who have received the mRNA vaccine have not only committed a
grave sin  
but also excluded themselves from the Church of Christ.  
What to do? Seven-year penance.  
video:  https://igazsag-  

Advent is a time of repentance. The Lord, through the prophet Isaiah,
speaks to those who have received the vaccine, and especially to those
who promote it:  
“Hear the word of the Lord, you rulers of Sodom; give ear to the law of
our God, you people of Gomorrah.” (Isa 1:10) “The ox knows its owner and
the donkey its master’s crib; but the Vatican does not know, these
people do not understand.” (Isa 1:3)  
“Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for
light, and light for darkness; who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for
bitter!” (Isa 5:20) “The earth is also defiled under its inhabitants,
because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken
the everlasting covenant. Therefore the curse has devoured the earth,
and those who dwell in it must pay the price for their sin.” (Isa
Those who have received the vaccine have committed a grave sin.  
What is a grave sin?  
It is the loss of sanctifying grace. If anyone dies in a state of grave
sin, he will be eternally condemned. This is the teaching of the Church.  
Who commits a mortal sin?  
The Catechism answers: He who transgresses God’s commandments  
1) with full knowledge,  
2) with full consent,  
3) in a grave matter.  
In other words, if anyone refuses to love and seek the truth, he is
easily and consciously deceived by liars disguising themselves with
ecclesiastical authority.  
Taking the mRNA vaccine is a serious matter, because  
a) this vaccine disrupts the human genome; it is a rebellion against God
the Creator;  
b) this vaccine is part of the chipping process, which the Bible warns
against speaking about the lake of fire;  
c) this vaccine contains tissue derived from a killed child, which is a
satanic ritual;  
d) it is a serious assault on health, i.e. a sin against the Fifth
Commandment, and at the same time it is part of the process of mass
What are the people who received one or two vaccines obliged to do?  
They must repent! It means to admit their sin to God, to admit that they
did not seek the truth, to make an act of contrition, and to bear the
consequences with patience as part of penance. The vaccine is associated
with the killing of an unborn child, so to undergo the vaccination means
to undergo satanic anti-baptism. This sin is associated with the
punishment of expulsion from the Church. The purpose of long-term true
repentance is for one to awaken spiritually and be saved.  
In the third, fourth and fifth centuries, at the time of St Cyprian, St
Basil the Great, St Augustine, so-called epitimia (penance) was
introduced, that is, several years of repentance. The issue of
traditores was addressed – that is, of apostates who sacrificed to pagan
idols for fear of torture. Today, after vaccination – that is, after
satanic anti-baptism – the situation is similar. Eastern canons, such as
the rule 81 of St Basil provides for an 11-year epitimia for those “who
have betrayed the faith without much violence”. Sometimes the epitimia
lasted even more years, especially in the case of practising divination,
magic, or other forms of pagan Satanism. The purpose of epitimia was to
heal the soul.  
Even temporal courts punish serious crimes with life imprisonment or the
death penalty (for example, in the USA). Serious transgressions against
God’s law carry eternal punishment in hell. Only true repentance will
save man from hell. Anyone who refuses repentance as a means of
salvation will be condemned (cf. Lk 13:3).  
If a priest or bishop has deceived the souls entrusted to his care by
promoting the vaccine, he has also committed a mortal sin and is also
subject to the penalty of excommunication – expulsion from the Church.
Such a bishop or priest, if he wants to be saved, is obliged to do
adequate penance, i.e. for at least seven years! During this period he
cannot act as a bishop or as a priest.  
Mortal sin and expulsion from the Church is a serious matter. Especially
at a time when many people are dying and will be dying as a result of
artificial infections, or rather vaccinations. If someone dies in mortal
sin, hell awaits them. This is the teaching of the Church.  
How to perform a seven-year penance (epitimia)?  
1) The penitent shall give a tithe of time to God, i.e. two and a half
hours daily. Apart from one hour of personal prayer, he shall pray with
his family at home from 8 to 9pm, which is the time of the Holy Hour. He
can save time by abstaining from vain information on the Internet or
from unnecessary mobile calls, and by doing away with the mainstream
media, television in particular. Pensioners shall set aside at least
four hours daily for prayer (see  
2) The penitent shall join prayer watches and pray at an appointed hour
every fourth week (see  
3) The penitent shall observe short prayer stops seven times a day (cf.
Ps 119:164), specifically when getting up, and then around 9:00, 12:00,
15:00, 18:00, 21:00, and before bedtime (see It
is an application of the Old-Testament and Christian tradition.  
4) The penitent shall observe a fast on bread and water on Wednesdays
and Fridays, unless he has serious health problems.  
5) The penitent shall not be allowed to receive the Body and Blood of
Christ for a period of seven years. He can only receive spiritual
6) The penitent shall celebrate Sunday, the Day of Resurrection. He
shall begin at home on Saturday evening after nine o’clock with one hour
of prayer focused on the truth of Christ’s resurrection. In the morning,
from five to seven o’clock, he shall continue with two hours of prayer
contemplating the truth of resurrection (see,  
Between eight and ten o’clock in the morning, he shall pray one hour
focused on the descent of the Holy Spirit (see  
The penitent shall attend Holy Mass without receiving Holy Communion. If
the priest is in apostasy, that is, if he promotes vaccination or
proclaims heresies that deny the essence of saving doctrine, such as the
heresies of Neomodernism or idolatrous Bergoglianism, a Catholic is
bound in conscience not to attend such Mass. Some churches even require
vaccination as a condition for entry!  
The penitent can participate in the Holy Mass spiritually through
communion with true Catholic priests and bishops who celebrate the Mass
at a given time.  
The penitent shall end the celebration of Sunday by reflecting on the
truth of Christ’s resurrection from 8 to 9 on Sunday evening (see  
7) The penitent shall spend one day in a month as a day of penitence.
The First Saturday – so-called Fatima Saturday, or the biblical new moon
(Isa 66:23) – is the most suitable day for this.  
How much time does he have to devote to the spiritual programme on this
penitent Saturday?  
The same amount of time as he devotes to work during the workday – 8
hours. Of those eight hours, at least four hours should be for prayer.
The rest can be devoted to the reading of the Holy Scriptures or the
lives of martyrs and saints, as well as to the reflection on God’s Word.
Everyone can testify and share their experience of how they repent in
practice and how they manage to fulfil the required conditions. It would
be good if at least a small community of 3-10 men gathered together for
the first Saturday of the month. If a priest introduces a forty-hour
adoration on the First Saturdays, women can use the opportunity. If
possible, men can also partially use the day of adoration for prayer and
Brothers and sisters in Christ, most of you have been deceived and have
undergone Satan’s antibaptism – vaccination. By doing so, you have
committed a grave sin and also expelled yourselves from the Mystical
Body of Christ – the Church. God offers you salvation through true
repentance. If you just look for excuses and reject the offered path of
repentance, you will most likely be eternally condemned with those who
remain stubborn. Many of you may not live to see the end of this seven-
year epitimia. But if you begin to repent and God will soon call you to
Himself, you will experience God’s mercy and forgiveness of sins.
Therefore, start today and enter the path of repentance – the path of

+ Elijah  
Patriarch of the Byzantine Catholic Patriarchate  

+ Methodius OSBMr                         + Timothy OSBMr  
Secretary Bishops  

30 November 2021  
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Print allIn new windowDobbs and fate of conservative legal movement; CA6 en banc rehearing in TN abortion case; CA6 en banc divide on Chevron/criminal law; and moreInboxEd Whelan <> Unsubscribe12:29 PM (1 hour ago)to meFrom NRO’s Bench Memos:Joel Alicea on ‘Dobbs and the Fate of the Conservative Legal Movement’By ED WHELANDecember 6, 2021 10:49 AMIn a City Journal essay, law professor Joel Alicea (whose work I’ve had ample occasion to praise) soundly observes of the pending Dobbs case:This, then, is the moment the conservative legal movement has fought to bring about. If the Court fails to overrule Roe, the ruling will likely shatter the movement, and while (under a proper conception of the judicial role) the potential effect of Dobbs on the conservative legal movement should be irrelevant to the outcome in that case, it would be a significant legacy of the Roberts Court if Dobbs brought an end to one of the most successful intellectual and political projects of the past half-century.Alicea explores the “intellectual tensions with the conservative legal movement—present since its inception and now coming to the fore.” He identifies and discusses two major tensions. One is an “intra-originalist tension … between those who saw originalism as a means to achieving some other substantive end [most prominently, judicial restraint] and those for whom it was the only legitimate constitutional methodology.” The second tension involves “disagree[ment] about whether originalism rests on a sufficiently robust moral foundation.”Alicea forecasts that the decision in Dobbs “will likely either increase those tensions to the point of rupture”—if, that is, the Court fails to overturn Roe—“or greatly alleviate them.” He bracingly warns:If the Court fails to overrule Roe and Casey, there is a very good chance that [Adrian] Vermeule would become the most important intellectual figure in whatever succeeds the current conservative legal movement. Sixth Circuit Grants En Banc Rehearing in Tennessee Abortion CaseBy ED WHELANDecember 6, 2021 12:23 PMI’m pleased to see that the Sixth Circuit last week, on the same day as oral argument in Dobbsgranted en banc review in Memphis Center for Reproductive Health v. Slatery.The case involves a challenge by abortion providers to two provisions of Tennessee law. One provision (section 216) bars abortion, except in the event of a medical emergency, at cascading intervals—detection of heartbeat, 8 weeks gestational age, 10 weeks, 12 weeks, 15 weeks, 18 weeks, 20 weeks, 21 weeks, 22 weeks, 23 weeks, and 24 weeks—and provides that any interval determined to be unenforceable shall be severed from the law. The second provision (section 217) forbids anyone from performing an abortion if that person “knows that the woman is seeking the abortion because of” the sex or race of the unborn child or “because of a prenatal diagnosis … indicating Down syndrome.”The Sixth Circuit panel opinion in September was unanimous that section 216 was barred by Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, even as Judge Amul Thapar wrote a powerful opinion explaining how wrong those precedents are. The panel divided on the anti-discrimination provision: the majority ruled that section 217 is unenforceable, while Judge Thapar dissented, pointing out (among other things) that earlier in the year the en banc Sixth Circuit had upheld “Ohio’s nearly identical anti-discrimination law.” (As Thapar points out, “Tennessee added race and gender to the protected class,” but those additions have nothing to do with the majority’s grounds of objection.)It’s a safe bet that the Sixth Circuit granted en banc review primarily for the purpose of revisiting the section 217 ruling but realized, now that Dobbs is pending in the Supreme Court, that it ought to hold the section 216 ruling for possible re-examination as well. My guess is that the Sixth Circuit will not act on the case until the Court rules in Dobbs. Section 216 will be unenforceable in the meantime. Section 217, as I understand it, remains in effect, as a Sixth Circuit motions panel issued a stay pending appeal of the district court’s preliminary injunction as to that provision. (I’m told that Tennessee, evidently eager to have crystal clarity on the matter, has just asked the Sixth Circuit for an identical stay.)The cascading provisions of section 216 also highlight what a foolish exercise it would be for the Court in Dobbs to say that Mississippi’s 15-week bar is okay without being able to draw a principled line that would substitute for the arbitrary line of viability. Such a delaying action would just ensure that cases like Tennessee’s would move quickly through the pipeline to the Court. Once again, there is no coherent middle ground in Dobbs, and the only legitimate option is for the Court to overturn Roe and Casey.  
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