Friday, February 20, 2015

NOW IT'S OUR TURN - STEP 2

In NOW IT'S OUR TURN, I recommended that in response to Archbishop Apuron's non-response we do two things: 1) STOP THE MONEY. Do not give to the Archdiocesan Appeal since Archbishop Apuron refuses to be accountable to us for our money.

Step 2 is as follows:


• Guam Catholics need to be aware that ALL parish income (collections) are subject to assessment by the Chancery, not just certain collections. 

• If the Archdiocesan Appeal does not reach its goals, it is possible that Archbishop Apuron will increase the amount of this assessment or simply order pastors to write him a check. 

• Because Archbishop Apuron refuses to be transparent about our diocesan finances, and because he refuses to answer the simple questions posed to him by the CCOG about the use of Appeal funds, some Catholics want to stop the money flow to the Chancery altogether. 

• However, they do not want to hurt their parishes.

• In order to do this, one suggestion has been the establishment of a non-profit corporation for individual parishes which would be separate from the parish and out of the reach of the archbishop.

• These corporations would have officers, an elected board, a membership, and would also have 501(c)3 status so contributions would be tax deductible. 

• The corporation would receive contributions and then administer the funds to take care of parish needs. This would prevent money from going to the chancery, at least until Archbishop Apuron comes clean about where the money goes. 

• As a legally constituted non-profit tax exempt organization under the laws of Guam, the entity would be required to publish financial reports and would thus be held legally accountable for the funds it receives. This is something Archbishop Apuron is NOT willing to do. 

The CCOG has not officially recommended this and it doesn't need to since each parish can do this on its own. However, the CCOG is looking to assist parishes with financial and legal advice if parish members opt to take this route.

If you would support the establishment of a non-profit tax exempt organization to receive and administer funds for the care of your parish, at least until Archbishop Apuron agrees to come clean about his use of your money, check back in a bit. I agreed to do a survey for the CCOG to determine interest. The survey will be posted at the top of the right side bar. 


25 comments:

  1. Aren't parishes 501 c 3 under group ruling of Archdiocese?? This sounds complicated for people in the pew.

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    1. No. CCOG is a non-profit with a pending 501c3 application. It is NOT under the Archdiocese. Yes, it may seem complicated. But many other parishes have done it. Here's one which established a 501c3 separate from the parish but specifically to assist the parish: http://friendsofsaintmatthew.com/intro-of-501c3

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  2. Fr.Matthew Blockley.February 20, 2015 at 11:44 AM


    Support CCOG stop the money .

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    1. I need to make it clear that CCOG is not calling for this. I am. Maybe CCOG will do so later.

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    2. I think it's a great idea, Tim. The parishioners have every right to know where the hard earned money they donate goes to and how it is spent. I will definitely make a contribution once this set up.

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    3. I agree with Tim's idea. When I attended Ash Wednesday mass at Santa Teresita Parish in Mangilao, I was debating whether I wanted to contribute to the collection basket. I hesitated because I didn't want AAA to get a cent of what I contributed, however, I went ahead and donated because I saw how organized the mass was and how well the ushers took care of those of us who had to worship under a tent outside the church due to lack of space inside. Now, my question is, if Tim's idea of creating a non profit to keep the monies within the Parish, would Rome recognize and support this?

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    4. No need for Romes support.

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  3. I like it, but I am really not a tax accountant.collector Tim And I don't think that it may fly with Rome as well. What I think would work is to stop giving completely to your parishes Any donation type and instead support your offerings to local non profits in your village, not other Christian Churches, but instead organizations that do worthy causes on Guam. It would also be good to place all your money monthly to CCOG for some permanency after all of this is resolved. If the laity are smart they would only support lay movements not faith based movements. Another way to go about this is to take the kids out of our Catholic Schools until teachers and staff are unionized. We have Ecclesial documents that support unionization of Church workers, why aren't we doing this on Guam. Sr. Francis Jerome is notorious for getting slave teachers from the Philippines, tuition has risen, but lay people's salaries have not. We are on target with the money issue, but we must worker harder to protect all the lay faithful. As an example, look at the workers now at our Churches, they all got booted when Msgr. James left. It is time to protect all the laity! Thank you and God Bless!

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    1. Rome would have nothing to say about it. Rome's permission is not needed. It is a legal entity separate from the church. This would only be set up by people who want to keep their parishes running.

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    2. Hmmm, sounds better.

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    3. Okay. I was thinking outloud here because I like it, but hope we could do more protections for the laity. This is a good first step. Thank you Brother

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  4. It may seem difficult, but seems necessary.

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  5. Satan has "taken over" dioceses, convoluting the truth on every level and pushing his agendas forward...I agree with this..I'm too old to continue donating just to make the rich get richer. Also, I'm so thankful for the remnant faithfuls-that is those who call them self catholic who still believe according to Tradition, to Tim, and the CCOG. .. St. Michael, defend our Catholic Churches now than ever during this Lent Season.

    Fanohge Chamorro (If we don't, who will, and will it be too late) !!!
    May everlasting peace reign o'er us
    May heaven's blessing to us come
    Against all perils, do not forsake us
    God protect our isle of Guam.
    Fanohge Chamorro !!!

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    1. I don't want to rain on your song; it is a great song for the public in general who considers him/herself chamorro; however, I wanted to remind us that, because of the kind of conflict we are experiencing, it is more important to expound the beauty of the church that Christ established called the Catholic Church and, instead, we should sing the song "Katoliko"; it should be sung after every mass as a reminder of who we are and that as Catholics we must follow the Magisterium!
















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    2. Maria P EFebruary 20, 2015 at 6:23 PM
      Not at all. I thank you for the reminder of the great song "Katolicko!" I was considering a couple of faithful elders that I came across recently who are living simple, to themselves, and unaware of the problems going on in our Catholic Church. As I told them that we now share the Church with a whole new group called "The Neocatechemunal Way". The laity "like them" the first step I thought of was to inform them, "Fanohge Chamorro" (because they are Chamorro's and family) if we want to keep the traditional church alive we must not be scattered but unite together, and stronger in our prayers. But yes, I will take heed from your comment and be much careful. Appreciate it much, thank you! I'm not aware whether singing "Katoliko" in the Church are just suggestions or has it been put into action. If so I would like to join in, and at what Church!

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  6. There's a second collection this weekend, something to do with Peter Paul??? Didn't quite hear it well during the announcements. Can anyone clarify what this collection is for?

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    1. The Peter's Pence collection goes to the pope to be used for those who are suffering as a result of war, oppression, natural disaster, and disease.

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  7. Let's each drop a specific colored envelope (yellow, black, or red; whatever signifies your feelings) into the basket (empty or with a note), sending a loud message that we're not giving support to their cult.

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  8. It's called Peter's Pence and there's another collection for it in October as well. The monies for this are slated to go to Rome, supposedly as our contribution to the Vatican.

    In addition, there is Holy childhood to be collected through out lent, Mission Sunday, and Catholic Communications Month. I am missing another that I can't recall.

    These collections are extra aside from the monthly assessment. The question is whether or not these offerings are used as intended, but we may never know.

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  9. Sorry Archie! I didn't get a memo or some sort of "Official Vatican Announcement."

    I am not going to give to any "themed" collection.
    In fact, I will donate directly to the St. Fidelis Friary Capuchins by way of consumable goods or paying first hand to a Capuchin Priest/Brother for his gas for the week to visit my parish sick and my hard earned money to the CCOG.
    Fellow brothers and sister's be cautious of the "smoke and mirrors" of the themed driven collections.
    Let the NEO's implode within by surviving and robbing on those "lost souls" within themselves!
    See clearly in front of yourselves; WE are the "Church, we are the CORRECT WAY!"

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  10. I am curious as to why Bishop Apuron is pushing the canonization of Diego San Vitore. Wasn't he a Spaniard? And didn't the Spanish "pacify" and "convert" through attrition ? I understand that the Chamoro population was about 35 thousand. By the time the Spanish completed the "conversion", there were less than 2 thousand left. Is this something the Church should celebrate? We know next to nothing about Diego, except what the Spanish have passed down to us. History is written by the victors. Saints come through God.

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    1. Your inquiry deserves a more thorough reply than I can give now. In fact, AAA did not appear to be interested in advancing the cause of San Vitores until his companion, Pedro Calungsod, was recently canonized. I'll get back to that. Meanwhile, Fr. Eric recently gave a talk on San Vitores at the Catholic Men's Conference. Here are some of the notes. Hope they help:

      SV is already beatified which means the Church officially declares him to be in heaven and able to pray to God for us; he is technically already a "saint." Saint" and "Blessed," "canonization" and "beatification" are essentially the same thing : the Church declares that a person is in heaven and able to intercede for us. The difference is one of degree or extension of devotion. A Blessed is usually honored in a certain locality or by a certain community; a saint has more extensive devotion by a larger area or by the universal church.

      Thus, Apuron is seeking a higher degree of veneration for SV. SV's sanctity has already been confirmed by Rome the moment he was beatified.

      The Chamorros could not have written any history at all as they had no writing. If it had not been for the Spanish accounts, we would know nothing at all about this part of our history. Historians debate on specific details in that Spanish-written history, but everyone agrees on the main points. That SV did come to the Marianas, renamed the Marianas, wanted (in his mind, the mind of many others and in the mind of many Chamorros themselves) nothing but the good for the Chamorro people. It is indisputable that many Chamorros embraced Catholicism because of SV, besides those who opposed him and ultimately killed him. SV was willing to die for his cause.
      The documented history shows that SV arrived on Guam without a real military force. He had 31 Hispanics and Filipinos with him (besides the religious missionaries) who were not professional soldiers, handpicked by SV for their piety. They were carpenters, tailors and so on who would be examples to the Chamorros and teachers of western skills. They shared three muskets between them. Among the 31 were 2 women, 2 adolescent boys and one 60 year old man. SV did not come with an army.
      Clearly, the military advantage was always with the Chamorros, which numbered, if your statement is correct, 35,000. The Spanish military numbers hovered around 300 at any given time. Had the Chamorros been truly unified and planned a unified offense, the Spanish would have been wiped out. Spaniards (Latin Americans and Filipinos) and pro-Spanish Chamorros also died from Chamorro sling stones and spears, as did SV with also a cut from a machete, which Matapang gladly borrowed from the Europeans. Pre-contact Chamorros did not have machetes. Chamorros were eager to use Western things and ideas, but in different ways. Some opposed SV, others embraced him.

      Disease was the main culprit.

      All the negative and sad experiences associated with the Catholic Mission would not have happened had these islands remained isolated and unvisited. But they weren't. And they couldn't. If it weren't SV, someone else would have brought the Western world to bear down on Guam and the Marianas, with its own negative consequences. It's the story of the world.

      Sanctity does not mean that the saint or blessed was perfect in every regard. It means that the person lived extraordinary, heroic virtue. Prior to his martyrdom, SV was esteemed by all, including many Chamorros, for his holiness. He had a great love for the Chamorros, but a love that was colored by his Christian faith and Western culture. Everyone is colored by their own ideas and cultural background.

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  11. Accountability is something fairly new to the Vatican. Seeing how the Catholic church paid out billions of dollars because of the sex scandals, the laity worldwide want transparency and accountability. Michael Voris explained this in his recent talk which can watched at ChurchMilitant.TV "The Vortex - Freedom of the Press". Follow ChurchMilitant.TV on facebook and get your daily updates.

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  12. How much has the Guam Archdiocese gives to the Peter's Pence collection a year ? We never get this information. How do we know it actually goes to the Vatican?

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    1. We really don't know on Peter's Pence or any other chancery mandated collections because that information was never afforded to the laity. This is why having regular financial reports published is a good thing to hold the Archbishop accountable to the Catholic laity. The money given to the Chancery is not generated from a business venture, but from the pews of the faithful that are generously given each Sunday. It is imperative that the funds collected from the laity are in fact used as promised.

      There is always that saying brought up about almsgiving in not letting the left hand know what the right is doing, but I don't think that saying applies to the accounting of the Archdiocese of Agana funds.

      At least with a non-profit organization collecting for each parish, accountability at a micro level is much more manageable.

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