“Christian” country – large majority of Americans say depraved sex, unwed births are OK May 21, 2013Posted by tantamergo in asshatery, Basics, Dallas Diocese, disaster, episcopate, foolishness, General Catholic, sadness, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sexual depravity, sickness, Society.
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I guess at least in one sense, one could look at this as a positive development. For if a majority say births to unwed mothers are morally acceptable, that means they shouldn’t favor abortion in these cases? But I would be a fool to expect even such a utilitarian consistency. I won’t quite pronounce this nation morally dead quite yet, because who knows how the pollsters led people to these responses, but it’s disturbing if even 20% of Americans now believe these depravities are now “moral:” (I add emphasis and comments)
A Gallup poll shows that a majority of Americans now believe that sexual relations between two men or two women, and unmarried women having a baby, are morally acceptable.
In the new survey, 59 percent of American adults answered that gay or lesbian relations are morally acceptable, a 19 percentage point increase since 2001 when only 40 percent said it was morally acceptable. [Which just goes to show the ongoing moral collapse, the soul-devouring influence of the popular culture, primarily through the medium of television, and the results of a relentless, focused, elite-driven propaganda campaign of unprecedented proportions. Black is white. Up is down. Laverne and Shirley are now that "nice couple" that has lots of cats and doesn't go out much.]
Sixty percent of respondents said that having a baby outside of marriage was morally acceptable, a 15 percentage point increase since 2002 when only 45 percent said it was morally acceptable.
Of the 20 issues which Gallup asked about their moral acceptability, same-sex sexual relations and unwed pregnancies saw the greatest increases. They were also the only issues which changed from a minority to a majority of the country finding them morally acceptable over the past decade.
The other large increases in moral acceptability were: sex between an unmarried man and woman went from 53 to 63 percent, divorce went from 59 to 63 percent, and medical research using stem cells from human embryos went from 52 to 60 percent. [What can I say? The sexular pagan chose their target well. Sex is the ultimate human weak spot, and studies have shown that once one gets lost in a state of perpetual arousal, virtually all inhibition is lost. Barring a major miracle, these numbers will only get worse.]
The only large decline in moral acceptability was for medical testing on animals, which went from 65 to 56 percent. [Of course! And see below, far more people think it is unethical to conduct medical testing on animals than it is to kill a defenseless human being! Because they are so cute and cuddly! The animals, I mean! Babies are just work, and cost $$$! Everyone knows that! I mean, who would want their daughter burdened with a baby?]
At six percent, married men and women having an affair had the lowest number of those saying it was morally acceptable.
Oh, I have no doubt that will change, and significantly, in the next 10 years. In 2022, there will be some poll that finds, inexplicably!!, that suddenly a large minority of Americans think marital infidelity is just fine, and 10 years after that, it wil be a substantial majority. And a hundred other depravities that were once unthinkable, will then be commonplace. What do you think will become of the hook-up kids on today’s college campuses, people who already have dozens of lifetime partners, when they go to get married? The statistical data is not good – studies show that women in particular with many partners have extremely high divorce rates (near 100% in their lifetime, according to some studies), and anecdotal evidence indicates much of this rate is fueled by sexual frustration and/or infidelity.
Drive God from your life, and it’s not that nothing takes His place. Satan does. And yet so many in Church leadership stand idly by and let it happen. So do we laity. Dear Lord….
The media is starting to freak about Pope Francis May 21, 2013Posted by tantamergo in awesomeness, Basics, episcopate, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, manhood, Papa, scandals, secularism, true leadership, Virtue.
You mean, he like, really believes in the devil? Doesn’t he know it’s the 21st century and, like, nobody believes in that anymore?
Pope Francis gave an extensive blessing to a very ill man. The man responded in a rather unusual way, audibly groaning and seeming to shudder, before semi-collapsing back into his wheelchair. Numerous media outlets immediately lept to the conclusion – ZOMG! Exorcism! Which, no way, not a formal one anyway, but certain prayers and blessings can be quickly applied with have the effect of a minor exorcism – they will drive away demons oppressing a soul lightly. I’m not saying that’s the case here, and blessings like this from this Pope are nothing unusual. But what has been unusual is the revealing reaction of the media, which seems to be increasingly upset that a man they expected to be “their guy,” or at least friendly to their conceits and worldview, is turning out to be just what they fear and loathe the most: a Catholic. He may be a Pope with very different interests and approaches to the Faith than the last few, and who knows what the future may hold in terms of his actions or emphases, but he is demonstrating such dyed in the wool Catholicism it is giving the media paroxysms of fear and doubt. To which I say, yay!
I, for one, am glad this Pope places such a strong emphasis on relaying to the faithful and the world – for the Pope is responsible not just for all Catholic souls, but all the souls in the world – the dire reality of satan and the forces of evil that are constantly prowlling around, looking for unwary souls to devour. May he continue to do so, and clearly link the amoral acts of so many of his sheep – contraception, divorce and remarriage, divorce, unnatural sex, etc., etc. – with both the influence of satan AND the consequences of sin: death for the soul, and eternal torment.
As for the world, we know it will always be against us. “But fear not,” Our Blessed Lord says, “for I have overcome the world!”
Indeed, He has.
No, Cardinal Dolan is not being patiently prudent in failing to publicly condemn NY Gov. Cuomo May 21, 2013Posted by tantamergo in abdication of duty, Abortion, Basics, contraception, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, scandals, secularism, self-serving, the return.
I posted on NYC Cardinal Dolan’s latest failure to defend the Faith last week. This story, wherein Cardinal Dolan stated he would “talk turkey” with NY Governor Andrew Cuomo over the governor’s repeated heresy, even apostasy, and then quickly walked back even this – it wasn’t even criticism, was it? - implication of concern with the governor, stating through a proxy that Cuomo remained “a Catholic in good standing?” Good Lord, who is not, then, a Catholic in good standing? Judging from this, I am virtually certain Cardinal Dolan subscribes to the papally condemned theory of universal or near-universal salvation, the so-called “fundamental option.” There is no other way to explain his behavior, unless he is just a radically indifferent modernist, which is just another way of saying the same thing.
Over at Acts of the Apostasy, I saw a soul who, I think, with very misplaced charity and sense of obedience, defended Cardinal Dolan’s actions as being patient and prudent. I profoundly disagree, and replied with the following:
There is patience, and then there is scandalous indifference. Let us see what Andrew Cuomo has done just in the past few years: helped ram through a radical redefinition of marriage, essentially destroying marriage as it has been known for thousands of years, with the aid of a New York Catholic Church that effectively neutered itself in the debate. He’s been a stalwart champion of baby murder, to the extent that whereas abortion is being rolled back by small efforts around the country, his state is planning the largest expansion of abortion access in the nation. And, he continues to live with a concubine who is not his wife, and his former marriage was never annuled. He also routinely undermines moral behavior in scads of other areas, all the while receiving the Blessed Sacrament, even from the very hands of bishops.
Failing to discipline this man, publicly, is not prudent patience. It is a massive failure of leadership which actually encourages Cuomo (and so many like him) to remain in his sins (which, if he were to die, his chances of salvation, objectively speaking, would be grim at best), causes scandal and confusion to millions of souls trying to be faithful, and endangers the shepherd’s own soul due to his disastrous failure to defend the Faith and use all the tools the Church has available to bring souls back to the right practice of the Faith. There is a word for this disastrous situation: scandal. Dolan’s action and inaction are the very definition of scandal.
This is not even debateable. Private “dialogue” while public sin continues, causing untold damage to souls, is a totally insufficient response. It is so insufficient as to be damnable, in the sense that lay Catholics have the right and duty to point out the Cardinal Archbishop’s failure. It is profoundly imprudent and uncharitable to leave souls mired in sin, and use only very small, politically safe means to try to redress the situation – if he even does that. We have only the Cardinal’s word that he actually engages with Cuomo on his manifestly sinful behavior – and we have the continuing scandal of the Cardinal dispensing the Blessed Sacrament to those objectively persisting in the state of grave sin.
When I think about how great Saints of the past behaved, the risks they took, the sufferings they endured, and then compare them to the current crop of shepherds……it’s a very bleak comparison. St. Anthony Marie Claret did not fear to publicly rebuke scandalous sinners in Cuba, he did not fear to use all the tools the Church has to bring souls back into the life of Grace, including interdict and excommunication. He got his face slashed for his trouble (the fact that he did not get his throat – the intended target – slit, was a minor miracle). He was violently persecuted by the sinners in government there. There were constant threats on his life. But he persevered, because God makes the Grace available to all of us to be Saints. It is our duty to cooperate with that Grace. For those who hold exalted offices in the Church, much more Grace is available, which is why the office of bishop has produced so many great Saints. But for decades, there have been very, very few men willing to cooperate with that Grace, it seems. It is exceedingly difficult not to see in this failure a profound tendency to have greater concern for the opinions of men and worldly affairs than for Jesus Christ and the good of His Church.
I pray for the conversion and sanctification of our shepherds every day.
Thus ends my comment at Acts of the Apostasy. But I will add a bit more. I don’t like saying this, it’s a very ugly thing, but I think it needs to be said. We’ve had a couple years to know Cardinal Dolan now, and I think the conclusion is inescapable: he is a politician in roman collar. His main or even secondary concern is not with the eternal destinies of souls, but his, and occasionally the Church’s, political position with all the “right” people. The USCCB is a primarily political entity, and Cardinal Dolan strategizes and conducts his affairs with that in mind. In most of the Western world, that is the case: the national episcopal conferences are primarily political entities, and that construct drives them to behave in ways that are very difficult to reconcile with the good of souls. Which is why I have argued for years that all these conferences – national, regional, international, whatever – need to be closed. It’s all about souls, and these conferences have not proven good for them. And they have proven disastrous for the cohesion of the Doctrine of the Faith and the administation of discipline.
Shut them down.
UPDATE: I should have added that LarryD’s post at AoA was a re-post of Terry Nelson’s comments here regarding the hypocrisy of many in the “Church-approved” Catholic punditocracy, who won’t breathe a word of criticism regarding Dolan, because such could be death for their careers, but they have no problem calling out Lila Rose as a public sinner for the undercover anti-abortion stings LiveAction conducts. Big surprise – those folks know who butters their bread, and they aren’t about to make them mad. It’s much safer to pick on a lay woman.
The heresy of the ecumenists May 20, 2013Posted by tantamergo in abdication of duty, Basics, disaster, Ecumenism, episcopate, error, General Catholic, pr stunts, sadness, scandals, secularism, self-serving, the return.
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Louie Verrecchio has a very revealing post on Cardinal Kurt Koch, Prefect of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity and the Commission for Religious Relations with Jews – thus, the Vatican’s chief ecumenist. Cardinal Koch routinely makes statements that would have unquestionably been viewed as heresy just a few short years ago. And since Church Doctrine can never change………..(I add emphasis and comments):
If the most recent Holy Roman Pontiff to have been canonized, Pope St. Pius X, could suddenly be placed in the Holy See of today, like a frog dropped in a pot of boiling water, he would leap into action, the anathemas and condemnations flying from his mighty pen so fast it would make even Cardinal Burke’s head spin. [As much as I love Cardinal Burke, I think Pope St. Pius X might have more than a bit of concern about him. And yet he is as good a Cardinal as the Church has at present. That shows where we are at.]
As it is, the majority of Catholic prelates are doing backstrokes as the souls in their care perish from lack of a shepherd.
Enter Cardinal Kurt Koch.
According to a report in the Tablet, Cardinal Koch, President of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity and the Commission for Religious Relations with Jews, on a recent visit to Jerusalem, stressed “no conversion for the Jews,” saying:
“We Christians must not bear witness in relation to the Jews to a path of salvation which is completely foreign to them, as we do with other religions. This is because the New Testament is built up totally on the basis of the Old Testament. The Catholic Church therefore does not have an organized Jewish mission, as certain Evangelical groups do.”
In speaking of “a path of salvation which is completely foreign” to the Jews, clearly His Eminence is referring to none other than Jesus Christ, who alone is the Way to everlasting life. [Both of these preceding statements are objectively true. Cardinal Koch is one of the most troubling prelates in the Church. Little surprise, then, that he is German (well,, German Swiss).]
How is it even remotely possible for anyone who holds the Catholic faith, much less a Prince of the Church (a title that means less with every passing day) [Ouch, but so true. That hits them where they hurt] to refer to Jesus Christ, Son of David and long-awaited Messiah, as “completely foreign” to the Jews? If a candidate for Confirmation said this, the bishop would be duty bound to deny him the sacrament!
And while it is true from the standpoint of formal structure that the Church does not have “an organized Jewish mission,” it is to the everlasting shame of all of her members that this is the case, especially those in the hierarchy who, like Cardinal Koch, place diplomacy and warm sentiments above the mission that Jesus Christ gave to His Church…….. [And that is exactly, precisely right. Koch, Dolan, Mahony, Ravasi, O'Brien,Tagle, Daneels, the list goes on and on, almost every single prince of the Church has either publicly declared heresy at some recent point, engaged in hideous scandal, failed to defend the Faith, or all three. It's a triple crown of massive fails!]
………in suggesting that the Jews stand in no need of conversion, Cardinal Koch is guilty of precisely the indifferentism condemned by Pope Pius VII, wherein “truth is confused with error, and the Holy and Immaculate Spouse of Christ is placed on the same level as heretical sects and even as Jewish faithlessness” (Post Tam Diurturnas)
[We must remind......] our fellow Catholics that the Church has been praying for the conversion of the Jews for many centuries, and for one simple reason. In the words of the Council of Florence:
The Catholic Church firmly believes, professes, and proclaims that those not living within Her, not only pagans, but also Jews, heretics, and schismatics, cannot become participants in eternal life but will depart ‘into everlasting fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels’ (Mt. 25:41), unless before the end of life the same have been added to the flock… (Council of Florence, Dz 714).
Given the fact that Cardinal Koch no longer believes as much, I would suggest in all charity that we must pray for his conversion, that he might one day return to the Catholic faith. [I agree.]
There is a little hook at the end of Verrecchio’s post that I won’t paste, because he definitely deserves the hit. Go to his site and scroll down to the end, and see if you get the joke. It’s delicious irony. Brilliant.
Can anyone dispute what Mr. Verrecchio says? I can’t even begin to, and must admit I agree with all he says.
And Mr. Verrechio’s prescriptive advice for the faithful is spot on: we must pray for all our shepherds, from our parish priest to the highest princes, for their sanctification, conversion, and humble submission to God’s Will and acceptance of ALL the Truth He has revealed through His Church. More than that, we must also condition our bodies, will, and minds to accept mortification, and offer that mortification up for the conversion of all prelates or perhaps one particular cardinal or bishop. Such would be a tremendous work of spiritual mercy, and very edifying for your soul, irrespective if that Grace moves the soul of a particular prelate. I think a very large part of the reason we are in our current crisis is because lay Catholics (myself certainly included) haven’t been offering enough prayers and sacrifices on behalf of our spiritual leadership. I will try to do more.
One final note, I just thought to add after I hit the publish button! The reason I entitled this post the heresy of the ecumenists is that Cardinal Koch’s views are extremely common among those engaged in the modern, post-Vatican II “ecumenical” effort in the Church. Those involved, from priests to cardinals to lay people, routinely make statements revealing at least a marked indifferentist attitude, if not outright heresy. This statement from Koch is just the latest example. And, incredibly, such statements can even be found at the very highest levels of authority, at times. But it is critical to keep in mind that none of these statements is doctrinal, none of them are binding on a Catholic’s conscience, so we can and must remain free to disagree, even stridently. That’s all.
How our cardinals do sin…. May 16, 2013Posted by tantamergo in abdication of duty, Abortion, Basics, contraception, disaster, episcopate, error, horror, scandals, self-serving, shocking, Society, the return.
Cardinals are the very princes of the Church. They are men given great Grace to elect the Pope, in addition to the torrents of Grace available through their ordination and then consecration as bishops. But it seems so very few Cardinals cooperate with that Grace. There has been the stomach-turning scandal of Cardinal O’Brien of Scotland, who resigned from his see in disgrace after numerous reports of depraved homosexual activity surfaced involving him, and men under his care, typically seminarians. After this resignation, Cardinal O’Brien had esconced himself in the parish of his “lifelong friend,” a fellow priest. When the Vatican began to intimate it would force Cardinal O’Brien to live a more retired and prayerful life than one of likely continued debauchery with his special “friend,” that priest-friend threatened to cause further scandal if his Cardinal-buddy were removed from his loving care. Well, the Vatican wasn’t bullied by this threat, the Holy See just announced that Cardinal O’Brien is leaving Scotland.
Michael Voris has much more here, including additional details on the O’Brien scandal:
This homosexual crisis in the priesthood is, to my mind, the single greatest threat to the priesthood in its 2000 year history. Can men engaged in lives founded on lies and engaging in the most debauched of activities really have a valid vocation? Do they really intend to confect the Blessed Sacrament, to change bread and wine+water into the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ? The implications of this scandal are soul-rocking, to say the least.
And as if the scandal of Cardinal O’Brien was not enough (and we know he is far from the only homosexual cardinal the Church has been afflicted with in the past few decades), today we get word that Cardinal Dolan once again failed to speak Truth to power, once again caved when it came to standing up for what the Church believed when it might threaten his ego-boosting playing at politics with the governor of New York:
New York’s Timothy Cardinal Dolan warned Gov. Cuomo to be ready for a holy battle if he tries to strengthen state abortion-rights laws.
In an interview on an Albany radio station Tuesday, Dolan said Catholic bishops would be “as vociferous and rigorous as possible in our opposition” to the governor’s efforts.Although Cuomo has yet to release an abortion bill, he’s announced plans to write into New York law protections now provided by federal court decisions like Roe vs. Wade…….………..Archbishop Dolan said the conviction Monday of Philadelphia abortion provider Dr. Kermit Gosnell on murder charges calls for laws that go the other way instead.“I am in a bit of consternation as to why in a time when there seems to be kind of a sobering up about these horrors of the unfettered access to abortion, why in New York we are talking about even expanding it further,” Dolan said. [Because there is nothing more sacred to a leftist than a woman's right to kill her child, you dolt! They will sacrifice ANY other policy position to protect that one! When will you guys in the American hierarchy figure this out? THE DEMOCRATS ARE THE PARTY OF ABORTION, AND WILL BE FOR AS FAR AS WE CAN SEE IN THE FUTURE. NOTHING - NOTHING (short of an act of God, which you are deliberately frustrating with your cowardice) - WILL MAKE THEM CHANGE THAT!]When asked how Cuomo could still consider himself a Catholic in good standing while also promoting abortion legislation, Dolan responded: “That’s something that I talk turkey with him about.”Dolan spokesman Joseph Zwilling later said the cardinal did not mean to suggest that Cuomo would not be a Catholic in good standing if he went forward with the bill.
Oh, Cardinal Dolan, you pathetic worldling.
How can we otherwise think, Cardinal Dolan, that you care so very much more about the opinions of men, and especially powerful men, than you do about either serving Christ OR even protecting the unborn on a natural level, that you immediately take the most powerful weapon you have against these apostate Catholics off the table? Cuomo is pursuing the most radical expansion of abortion in this nation at present. All around the country, abortion is being rolled back by drips and drabs, but not in New Yack! Oh, no, there, it’s a brave new world of baby slaughter for all, with the great Cardinal of New Yack talking turkey as the sewer drains overflow with blood! And so you have to clarify “oh……I didn’t mean to imply still-living-in-sin-with-his-concubine Andrew Cuomo wouldn’t be a Catholic in good standing if he is directly responsible for dramatically increasing what is already by far the country’s highest rate of abortion!” It wouldn’t be politic to do so, right?!
The continuing scandal of Cardinal Roger Mahony May 14, 2013Posted by tantamergo in abdication of duty, Basics, episcopate, Four Last Things, General Catholic, Holy suffering, sadness, scandals, self-serving, sexual depravity, sickness, Society.
This is what comes of elevating unworthy men to positions of great power and influence. This man is a disciple of Cardinal Bernadin, and shows every day just what a damning association that is:
The Los Angeles Times expresses confusion, as we all should, about what the heck is going on in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Three months ago, Archbishop Gomez relieved his predecessor, Roger Cardinal Mahony, of “public duties” in the Archdiocese, including, according to a spokesman for the Archdiocese at the time of Archbishop Gomez’s announcement, celebrating the sacrament of confirmation. [Well, Archbishop Gomez caved within a day, reinstating Cardinal Mahony's faculties. This was after direct threats from Mahony and his very wealthy supporters (I shudder to think of the state of the souls that would willingly, and viciously, support this man) regarding retaliation against Gomez, intimating they would reveal what Gomez knew and when regarding handling of various abuse cases. This threat apparently worked, and well. Gomez has been totally silent on the matter of this disgraced cardinal since then] At the moment, however, the Cardinal is traveling around the Archdiocese celebrating that sacrament “every week” (his own words) and telling those who question him about it to “go home now” (his words). Meanwhile, Archbishop Gomez refuses to comment.
Cardinal Mahony’s mishandling of his clergy’s abuse of children boggles the mind and saddens the heart. A decade after Cardinal Law was pressured into resigning for his own mishandling of such abuse, Mahony continued the mishandling right up until he submitted his resignation as required at the age of 75, and his successor, who surely knew much or all of what Mahony had done to hide the abuse, distanced himself and the Archdiocese from Mahony only when files Mahony had endlessly litigated to keep secret became public. Two years Archbishop Gomez waited, and when at last he relieved Mahony of his “public duties,” he did so only for purposes of a phony publicity stunt, it would now seem.
Only the Pope can discipline a Cardinal, but Archbishop Gomez has jurisdiction over the confirmation schedule in his own Archdiocese. We can hope that Pope Francis will ground Cardinal Mahony and turn off his self-serving blog. We can also hope that Archbishop Gomez will do right by the faithful of his Archdiocese and *in fact* relieve Cardinal Mahony of his public duties in the Archdiocese. Members of the hierarchy need to stop scandalizing the faithful. Enough already. It is Cardinal Mahony who should “go home now.” If Pope Francis seeks to “rebuild” the Church, Cardinal Mahony’s public presence is only impeding that all-important work. Public penance for the Cardinal would be a help to that work on which turns, after all, the salvation of souls. Archbishop Gomez’s integrity is on the line here as well, and the jury — including in the form of the LA Times — is observing the evidence as it pours in.
I’m not surprised at all by Gomez’ failure to act, nor his moral cowardice. I’ve never been terribly impressed by him. The difference between San Antonio and LA is essentially nil. Both are extremely liberal dioceses.
Mahony has one of the most mammoth egos I’ve ever seen. This man – like his mentor, Bernadin – is utterly cocksure he can do no wrong, that he is always in the right, and gives no appearance of even a slight degree of real repentance for his crimes. Yes, he continues to cause scandal by his very presence. And if he were to be present to confirm one of my children, my children would get confirmed somewhere else. He is as utterly unlikeable figure as there is in the Church today.
But, he still has a soul, and will face his individual judgment. His towering ego and overweening pride reveal him to be a man who treats “working out our salvation with fear and trembling” with disdain. I am afraid Cardinal Mahony might be in for a terrible surprise. Certainly, there is nothing in being a cardinal that gives assurance of piety, let alone salvation - the Church has had some disastrously immoral cardinals. Thus, all the more does he need prayers, unworthy of them he may be. In fact, it is his very unworthiness that makes it all the more imperative to pray for him. And given what an ugly character he is, sincere prayers on his behalf are sure to be very meritorious of Grace and virtue.
Of course, also pray for his many victims. The pain they must endure at the sight of this man getting off utterly scot free must be horrifying.
“A Manifesto of the Catholic Laity” from 1943 May 14, 2013Posted by tantamergo in abdication of duty, Basics, catachesis, Dallas Diocese, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Liturgy, priests, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Tradition.
We are frequently told, by various figures in the Church ranging from local parish priests to numerous bishops, and even various authority figures in Rome, that the old Mass, the Traditional Latin Mass, was a very bad thing. Nobody understood anything. The people sat there blithely thumbing their stupid beads, while the priest rushed through Latin he didn’t understand, with the total effect being that nobody was edified at all by the experience, ever. I exaggerate, but not much. There is no question there are very strong impressions given that the Mass prior to the massive changes of the late 60s was gravely deficient, did not form souls well in the Faith, and generally was disliked by the laity, who rarely understood at all what was going on. Now, even if this widely presented view were true, one could see in this perhaps less a problem with the Mass itself, but a significant failure of catachesis, but be that as it may. That is the view that is presented, when arguing that the changes made to the Mass that resulted in the Novus Ordo were very necessary, in order to get at least some modicum of involvement from the people in the Mass.
The problem with this view is that, it doesn’t square well with the historical record. The simple fact of the matter is, there was virtually no clamor from the laity for a change to the Mass, at any period during the 20th century. As I have already addressed on this blog, even 10 years after the introduction of the Novus Ordo, a national survey reported in a secular newspaper showed the vast majority of Catholics preferred to return to the Traditional Mass! In fact, the entire “liturgical movement” was driven by academics and liturgical “elitists,” if you will, people who made study of the Liturgy their life’s work, and who became convinced, for various reasons (but, principally, a widespread acceptance of modernism among this elite), that the Mass was sorely deficient and simply must change. In having read a number of books on the subject now, following the arc of the liturgical movement of the 20th century, it is apparent to me that the imperative to change was a self-fulfilling prophecy, with excessive focus on change leading to loss of pastoral sensitivity (or misplaced sensivitiviy), and the entire movement devolving to a sort of zero-sum game where all the problems in the Church would be corrected if only the Mass could be changed, and radically! And thus, we got what we got.
But, again, history shows that far from being disinterested in the Mass, or desiring it to change, many of the laity, and very likely the same large majority reported in the late 70′s poll linked to above, were very attached to the Traditional Mass and did not want it to change at all. They were in fact put off by the liturgical movement and the effort to foist changes on “their Mass.” Specifically, there was an article in the July 17, 1943 edition of the The Tablet in England, regarding a “Manifesto” produced by lay English Catholics regarding the radical changes being discussed, even then, regarding the Mass. Far from favoring changes, or supposedy hungering for Mass in the vernacular, which was the sine qua non of the post-conciliar liturgical reform, these Catholics were very offended at the changes being discussed, and wanted it to be known that they loved the Mass, they loved it in Latin, and just wanted it to be taught better (from Dom Alcuin Reid’s The Organic Development of the Liturgy, note 109 pp. 92-93, I add emphasis and comments):
We, the undersigned Catholic layfolk, desire…….to make known our true feelings with regard to the present controversy concerning the language used by the Church in her public worship. We utterly repudiate the subversive efforts that are being made to discredit the use of the Latin Liturgy [So, even decades before Vatican II, the laity were aware of the "subversive" efforts of elites to change the Mass and attack Latin, and impose undesired top-down changes to the Mass, in contrast to natural, organic development, from the bottom up] , a precious heritage brought to the English people by St. Augustine of Canterbury from our glorious Apostle, St. Gregory the Great, and which we are proud to have preserved intact these fourteen hundred yeas, even throughout the hardships and dangers of the penal times. We therefore protest that we are oppposed to all attempts to tamper with this venerable Liturgy, or to substitute for it a copy of any non-Catholic rite, however beautiful and impressive. [It also seemed these well-informed laity had picked up on the protestant overtones to many of the proferred changes] We strongly resent the implication that we and our children are not sufficiently intelligent to understand the simple Latin of the Mass, and we declare our readiness to do all we can to equip ourselves with the necessary knowledge so as to be able to take a more active and intelligent part in our parochial Mass. [Thus, a reaction to the elitist attitude which assumed that the laity were too dumb to understand Mass in a language other than their own] We also respectfully petition our bishops to use their authority to make the teaching of simple liturgical Latin obligatory in all our Catholic schools, since we are convinced that such instruction would be of immense spiritual and intellectual value to our children and would help them to realise more vividly the supra-national character of our Faith. [I'm very impressed with this statement - these folks understood that Latin makes the Mass universal, instead of hundreds of different translations and millions of "inculturating" acts, which makes even Masses in the same town often differ radically from one another, let alone the differences between nations] Finally ,we very humbly beg our Clergy to help our efforts by a distinct and deliberate enunciation of all the words of the Liturgy, so as to make it possible for every one of us to beocme more at home with the spiritual language of our Holy Mother Church, and thus to assist at her public worship with greater understanding and devotion. [An exhortation to priests to pronounce the Latin better]
I am singularly impressed by this statement. Dom Reid does not go into detail on how many signatures it had, but it seems at least some in England understood quite clearly, even in 1943!, the nature of the changes the liturgical movement had come to favor and the dangers those changes posed. They also understood the unstated assumption that the laity were simply too stupid to follow along in a “foreign” language.
But I think the most important element, is the call to better education. And I think that is really the core of what went wrong with the Church in the mid-20th century. Instead of focusing on the very hard, often dreary, often frustrating work of catachesis and evangelization, many in the Church leadership came to favor big programs – rather like how our governments have acted since that time – that will magically solve all problems, and accomplish the tasks of evangelization and catachesis for them. That is to say, instead of slogging in the trenches, it was much more sexy to many elites to exercise their power and demonstrate their brilliance by imposing top-down changes of various sorts. And certainly, since Vatican II, the Church has been enamored of big programs. The Mass, the perennial “new evangelization,” calls for sweeping governmental reforms and the establishment of super-national forms of governance, top-down forms of charity, proliferations of offices and dicasteries and congregations and committees – all have been presented as solutions for “problems,” which are really best dealt with on the local level, by encouraging hard work by priests and bishops to form their people in the Faith! But, for whatever reason, that simple call, which was what sustained the Church through thick and thin for centuries, is the one thing it seems our leaders are most reluctant to do.
None of which is to say there aren’t individual priests and bishops who do an exemplary job at catechesis and evangelization, it’s just that such are exceedingly rare. And it seems the people of England, 70 years ago and 20 years before the Second Vatican Council, knew this very well. It is a pity their call was not heeded.
I pray this era of big programs may end. I pray we can get back to focus on grass-roots evangelization and especially catachesis. But I hear so many horror stories about parish catechetical programs. Very often, what is taught is a barely disguised protestantism, at best. Sometimes, it’s much worse than that.
I hope to do another post on this subject either later today or tomorrow. Even early members of the liturgical movement itself recognized that big programs of severe, top-down changes, were no panacea for the collapse in the practice of the Faith already well underway in the first half of the 20th century.
I haven’t read Fr. Ryan Erlenbush’s blog much recently, and shame on me, I suppose. His most recent post is an excoration of the Novus Ordo (entitled, “Ascension Sunday” – The banal fabrication we call the Mass) and especially the mangled liturgical calendar we now have, which has been totally cut off from Tradition and left Catholics adrift in a sea of mangled seasons, with no clear connection to the very strong, very edifying currents of the former liturgical year. This has all been done in the name of the almighty determinant of the post-Vatican II Church – pastoring. The former calendar, still in use, thank God, at traditional parishes, which guided the lives and seasons of billions of Catholics for hundreds of years, just wasn’t pastoral enough.
Fr. Erlenbush’s post is pretty long, with extensive excerpts from the writings of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. Some excerpts:
In the years since the Second Vatican Council, in an effort to make the liturgy more readily acceptable and agreeable to the people (with the obvious hope that they would grow in devotion and love for God), there have been a number of changes to the liturgical calendar. Furthermore, it has also happened that certain adaptations may be employed either by the local bishops’ conference or by a local bishop himself.Most of these changes and possible adaptations have done little to encourage the devotion of the faithful, but have served only to destroy the little reverence and solemnity left to the Novus Ordo.Happily, whatever the bishops may do to the public prayer of the Church, parents remain the primary leaders of the domestic church – the family. In this little article, we will discuss a few of the banalities present in the calendar of the New Mass (there are far too many to point out in a blog post, but we will mention those most obvious and egregious).
The Bishops of the United States, exercising their pastoral prudence and with the blessing of the Holy See, have chosen to move the solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord to the following Sunday (thus abrogating the 7th Sunday of Easter).To this, Sacred Scripture states:The former treatise I made, O Theophilus, of all things which Jesus began to do and to teach, Until the day on which, giving commandments by the Holy Ghost to the apostles whom he had chosen, he was taken up. To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion, by many proofs, for forty days appearing to them, and speaking of the kingdom of God. […]And when he had said these things, while they looked on, he was raised up: and a cloud received him out of their sight. (Acts of the Apostles 1:1-3,9)The inerrant and historical Scriptures tell us that Jesus was with his disciples for precisely forty days after his Resurrection. That means that he ascended on a Thursday. He was not with his disciples for forty-three days, but for exactly forty days. To say otherwise would be to deny the truth of the Bible, it would be a veritable heresy.Now, the bishops are not committing heresy, obviously. [I don't know, it depends on the bishop. Some certainly have proclaimed heresy, stating things like souls get a do-over at their particular judgment, in the event they've led a dissolute life. Even collectively, one closely reading statements from the USCCB can find many statements, especially from documents produced back in the 80s, that give one great pause, to say the least.] They are not stating that Jesus ascended on a Sunday, obviously. [I think one could argue that, in effect, they actually are, even if not intentionally doing so.] They are simply setting aside the venerable tradition and the Scriptures themselves in the name of “prudence”. [This statement is problematic. I don't think one reasonably can set aside Tradition and Scripture in the name of prudence. Expedience, possibly, but not prudence. How could it be prudent to confuse souls and mangle the liturgical calendar?] Oh, what “prudence” this is! Saints deliver us from such “prudence”!What is particularly devastating about this disintegration of the liturgical calendar is that we lose the novena from Ascension to Pentecost. If Ascension is celebrated on Sunday, then our “novena” will be only six days (from Monday to Saturday). When the Ascension is on Thursday, we gain the true novena (from Friday to the following Saturday).
Pope Francis joins Roman March for Life May 13, 2013Posted by tantamergo in Abortion, awesomeness, contraception, episcopate, General Catholic, Papa, Society, true leadership, Virtue.
This is quite fantastic. Even more fantastic, would be for Pope Francis in cope and chasuble, leading the March for Life with the Blessed Sacrament raised high:
Pope Francis surprised about 40,000 Italian and international participants in today’s Marcia per la Vita (March for Life) Internazionale in Rome this morning, when he left the Apostolic Palace to greet them personally from his popemobile in the street where they were lined up.
Monsignore Ignacio Barreiro, the head of the Rome office of Human Life International, told LifeSiteNews.com that for the pope to have effectively joined the March for Life was highly unusual.
….In a shout-out to the marchers from his usual weekly Regina Coeli address, the pope briefly welcomed the crowd and endorsed a European-wide pro-life petition against embryo research.
The ‘One of Us’ campaign is seeking to gain 1 million signatures as part of a European Citizen Initiative. If organizers of the campaign achieve their goal the European Parliament is duty-bound to schedule a debate on the issue.
“I invite you to keep the attention of everyone on the important issue of respect for human life from the moment of conception,” the pope told the marchers.
He also invited all to attend the Vatican’s “Evangelium Vitae Day,” which he said would be “a special moment especially for those who care about the defense of the sanctity of human life,” to take place “in the context of the Year of Faith,” on 15 and 16 June.
March organisers were delighted with the greeting and with the extraordinary surge of numbers from last year’s march, which attracted 15,000 from around the country.
“The welcome of Pope Francis represents the highest recognition for the initiative and the confirmation of the sensitivity of the Pope to the non-negotiable principles, beginning with the right to life,” organisers said.
Mons. Barreiro also described the dramatic increase in numbers, from 1000 two years ago, to 15,000 last year, to about 40,000 today. This he put down to the hard work of the organisers in helping thousands come by bus from up and down the length of Italy, and to a “renewed awareness” among the public that Italy’s abortion law “must be abrogated.”
“The people are now really certain that we have to stake a stronger position than that which has been held in the past by some Italian pro-life groups.”
Certainly, a Pope with a populist touch that rivals Blessed John Paul II. I suspect, given the Pope’s presence this year, next year’s march might top 100,000.
Video from Rome Reports, hopefully they won’t sue me:
Fr. Rodriguez’ plea to our nation’s bishops May 13, 2013Posted by tantamergo in abdication of duty, awesomeness, Basics, episcopate, error, General Catholic, persecution, priests, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sexual depravity, sickness, Society, true leadership, Virtue.
This was given on Ascension Thursday. I like how Fr. Rodriguez gives very detailed, specifically-composed prayers at the introduction of his sermons. That is rare, even among traditional priests.
There is about 17 minutes of actual sermon, outside the prayer.
There is a great listing of just some of the authoritative, dogmatic statements from popes and councils regarding Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus, or outside the Church there is no salvation, from ~8:45 – 10:00.
Discusses Quas Primas and the Social Kingship of Jesus Christ from 10:00 – 11:00.
There is much more. If you listen to no other part, at least listen to 18:30 – 18:55, when he describes to the bishops of Holy Mother Church that we, the Church, exist in a spiritual battle with the forces of darkness, and for quite some time, the forces of darkness have been slaughtering us. I ask, me, tantamergo, I ask: how can that be? It’s absolutely true, but given the overwhelming power of Christ and His Church over satan and all evil, how can the Church be losing this battle? There is only one answer – we are not pleasing Christ in our belief or practice.
Please pray for Fr. Rodriguez. He is one of a very few fully canonically regular priests who are willing to say these things, especially with regard to the failures of episcopal leadership in the Church. The crisis in the Church is, much like the Arian heresy, a crisis of bishops. And since bishops are the ones given the Grace to lead the Church and lead the fight for the soul of the culture, when they fail to cooperate with that Grace, the result is catastrophe for the Church. Which is precisely what we have seen in the past 50 years.
But none dare speak that truth, because it tends to elicit a violent response. Fr. Rodriguez has experienced that response. He is, quite literally, a voice crying in the wilderness. Pray that he remain steadfast! And pray that he not be unjustly persecuted any further!