This morning I saw that James Swan had blogged a portion of a Karl Keating e-mail. It caught my attention, partly because I think someone removed me from the CA fund-raising e-mail list (I can’t say I’m upset about that), and partly because it contrasted so strongly with the attempted presentations of Rome’s beliefs common in ecumenical and apologetic websites. Here is the portion James posted:

Here’s a recent letter from Karl Keating:

Where the Virgin Mary’s house stopped for a rest

Angelic house movers sometimes need a rest too

You probably have heard of the Holy House of Loreto. It’s said to be the house in Nazareth where the Virgin Mary grew up and where the Annunciation occurred. The story is that, to protect it from invading Turks, angels lifted the house in 1291 and flew it toward Italy.

You may know that part. What you probably don’t know is that the angels tired on the way. (Houses are heavy, after all!) They rested—for three years—on a hilltop in Croatia, before carrying the house the rest of the way to Loreto.

Where they rested you now will find the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Trsat. It’s just one of three key pilgrimage sites we’ll visit on this autumn’s “Catholic Croatia” tour.

Since I’m partly of Croatian extraction, on my mother’s side, I’m looking forward to visiting Trsat and the two other pilgrimage sites: the Sanctuary of Our Lady of the Snows at Marija Bistrica (Croatia’s top Marian shrine) and the Sanctuary of the Trinity in Ludbreg, where a Eucharistic miracle occurred in 1414, with the wine turning into visible blood.

Personally, I find the legend of the House of Loreto a wonderful example of the medieval mysticism and gullibility that gave rise to the entire relics trade and to the materialistic, sensationalistic stories associated with the newly minted term “transubstantiation.” That the leading Roman Catholic apologetics organization in the United States would even visit such a site on a “pilgrimage,” let alone give credence to the concept (“where a Eucharistic miracle occurred in 1414”) is telling. Of course, when I think of 1414, I think of the Council of Constance, which healed the Papal Schism, and burned Jan Hus the next year for preaching the gospel of salvation, but that’s just me.

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