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Don’t be shocked when it happens: it’s just about certain Communion will be granted to divorced/remarried Catholics December 18, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, episcopate, error, Eucharist, foolishness, General Catholic, Holy suffering, horror, Our Lady, Papa, sadness, scandals, shocking, sickness, Society, SOD.
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That is the point made by Dale Price in this post at Dyspeptic Mutterings.  I am going to take more of the post than I should, because Price covers several items I have not addressed on this blog, most notably Pope Francis’ interview in the radical Argentine journal La Nacion last week.

I have to say, I briefly felt some elation and relief and the seeming “failure” of the progressives at the first half of the Synod to get their radical program enacted.  It has to be said, Pope Francis has indicated in myriad ways his support for this program.  But after some weeks of reflection, I have come to feel that whatever “defeat” was suffered towards the end of the October Synod proceedings was minor, at best, and that the progressive forces will continue driving towards the conclusion they want until they get it.  That brings me to the other item I have not covered on this blog: the “lineamenta” or survey of questions for the bishop’s conferences for the second half of the Synod (have things changed much in a year since the last survey?!?) is much more full of progressive bias and loaded, leading questions than even the previous one.  This lineamenta was produced by the Pope’s hand-picked secretary, and contains like this one below:

38. With regard to the divorced and remarried, pastoral practice concerning the sacraments needs to be further studied, including assessment of the Orthodox practice and taking into account “the distinction between an objective sinful situation and extenuating circumstances” (n. 52). What are the prospects in such a case? What is possible? What suggestions can be offered to resolve forms of undue or unnecessary impediments?

Sorry folks from the declaration at the beginning to the way the questions are worded to what is left out, this is an answer begging for a question, or, even more, a diktat to its recipients: get on board, boys, if you want a future in the Church.

Price quotes the following from yet another episode of the Magisterium of left-wing newspaper interviews:

[Q:] In the case of divorcees who have remarried, we posed the question, what do we do with them? What door can we allow them to open? This was a pastoral concern: will we allow them to go to Communion?

[A:] Communion alone is no solution. The solution is integration. They have not been excommunicated, true. But they cannot be godfathers to any child being baptized, mass readings are not for divorcees, they cannot give communion, they cannot teach Sunday school, there are about seven things that they cannot do, I have the list over there. Come on! If I disclose any of this it will seem that they have been excommunicated in fact! [I mean, really, they only persist in a manifest state of mortal sin, they have very likely gravely damaged the lives of their children and quite possibly their former spouse, massive divorce is incredibly harmful to society at large, but how can they not be godfathers or EMHCs?  I mean, everybody should be able to casually handle the Lord and Master of the Universe, right?]
Thus, let us open the doors a bit more. Why cant they be godfathers and godmothers? “No, no, no, what testimony will they be giving their godson?” The testimony of a man and a woman saying “my dear, I made a mistake, I was wrong here, but I believe our Lord loves me, I want to follow God, I was not defeated by sin, I want to move on.” [Now, to me, a mistake might be getting drunk one night, or getting into a fight.  Divorce is quite a bit more than just a mistake. But the much more significant problem is this: such people living as concubines with someone not their spouse are in an ongoing state of grave sin and give ongoing scandal. According to the inspired and inerrant word of God in Sacred Scripture, doing such constitutes the gravest sacrilege. Regularizing divorce in this manner goes directly against the Word of God spoken directly by Himself. There is no mention at all of that reality by Kasper or in the text above]
Anything more Christian than that? And what if one of the political crooks among us, corrupt people, are chosen to be somebody´s godfather. If they are properly wedded by the Church, would we accept them? What kind of testimony will they give to their godson? A testimony of corruption? [Ugggh. This is a really weak argument.  It’s special pleading and scapegoating]
Things need to change, our standards need to change.

That’s the point. That’s the entire point, and it represents evidence of a progressive mindset. I’m sure you’ve heard someone say, when arguing in favor of some special treatment for themselves, or for some progressive pet social project “hey, come on, it’s the 90s now.  It’s not the 50s anymore!” Or “it’s 2014, not 1920!”

You get the point.  Progressives have an unshakable faith that society must progress, change, and move forward, and that each progressive advance leaves society better than the last.  This is as fundamental a part of progressive belief as their focus on sexual libertinism.  And that is the only real argument put forward by Pope Francis above: times change, society must advance, and this “liberalizing” of Communion for those in a state of grave sin, even public sin, is a required advance for a more “just” (meaning equal, meaning lowest common denominator) treatment of these people.  Tolerance is the highest, and just about only, virtue.

Price closes really well with this:

Those of you who are Anglicans will have seen this movie before: dialogue does not end until the proper result is reached. Then it becomes the Laws of the Medes and Persians, hater. [Dang right. As I showed in the post on Marquette U, once the progressive achieves his goal, further argument becomes illicit and one must simply accept the progressive advance. In that sense, the first half of the Synod was a rousing success, as the progressives got their radical views out in public, with most people now either believing that the Church has “changed its teaching” or that it is at the very least strongly considering doing so.  These people never move backwards. They take what they can, regroup, and attack again]

Given what the Vatican just issued, the most recent interview shows the Pontiff’s mind quite clearly (not that it was particularly opaque before). Throw that in with the papal power-invoking rhetoric in the wildly-overpraised speech he gave at the conclusion of the 2014 Synod (reinforced by more explicit authority to depose), and I think it’s more likely than not that he forces through some variation on the Kasper proposal in 2015.

As do I.  Naturally speaking, I’d say it’s a lead pipe cinch.

But let us pray that may not happen.  Prayer can work great miracles, and perhaps prayer helped galvanize what opposition there was in 2014.  Things are very far from over, yet.  With God, all things are possible.

And as Noah said in response to my previous post, I’m afraid we are going to have to get used to taking up our cross and enduring some difficult trials for the foreseeable future.

 

Vatican played a role in aiding talks for US break on Cuba? December 17, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in disconcerting, episcopate, General Catholic, Papa, sadness, scandals, self-serving, silliness, Society.
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A commenter left this link to a Yahoo report that the Vatican was involved in the recent “negotiations” (some might term it a surrender, or cave) between the Obamanation Administration and the murderous communist government of Cuba (where the people have chicken maybe once a month as a huge treat) that will greatly relax US restrictions on what the, ahem, Catholic President Kennedy termed “that imprisoned island.”  The report:

The historic breakthrough in U.S.-Cuban relations began in spring 2013, when President Barack Obama authorized secret talks with Havana, the same tactic he used to open nuclear negotiations with Iran.

Months of talks in Canada and at the Vatican, involving one of Obama’s closest aides, culminated on Tuesday when Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro spoke by phone for nearly an hour and gave final assent to steps that could end a half-century of enmity and reshape Western Hemisphere relations.

Obama believed that “if there is any U.S. foreign policy that has passed its expiration date, it is the U.S.-Cuba policy,” said a senior Obama administration official, briefing reporters on condition of anonymity. [If it’s so great, then why do you only speak on condition of anonymity, and why was all this conducted under cloak of darkness, until it became a fait accompli?  And are there not US laws passed by Congress that govern much of US relations with Cuba?  So is this another exercise in executive lawlessness on the part of Obama?]

The Vatican played a key role in the rapprochement, including facilitating talks on the release of Alan Gross, a former subcontractor for the U.S. Agency for International Development who returned from Cuba on Wednesday after five years’ imprisonment, U.S. officials said.

In early summer 2014, Pope Francis – who is from Argentina – sent separate personal letters to Obama and Castro, urging them to exchange captives and improve relations.

When the pope received the U.S. president in Vatican City in late March, the secret Cuba talks were a central topic of discussion. Cuba “got as much attention as anything else,” the official said.

The first face-to-face talks that eventually led to this week’s deal took place in June 2013 in Canada, which has long maintained relations with Cuba……..

Before you go saying this is all Pope Francis’ doing, Yahoo reports that the negotiations started under Pope Benedict – that is, if he was even aware, which I would assume he was?:

The Vatican got involved as early as March 2012, when a group of U.S. lawmakers went to the papal ambassador’s office in Washington’s posh Embassy Row section and pleaded for help.

Since then, through a Vatican transition from Pope Benedict XVI to Pope Francis, “it has always stayed on the Vatican’s radar,” said Senator Barbara Mikulski, from Gross’ home state of Maryland. “They talk to higher powers. I don’t know if it’s radar or angels, Cherubim, Seraphim – they go for it.”

I don’t have a lot of comment. Whatever the merits of the past US policy towards Cuba, it hasn’t succeeded in toppling the Castro family oligarchy that rules that nation (like most other communist nations, there is no “dictatorship of the proletariat,” there is a ruling nomeklatura who live like kings while the peasants suffer in poverty and filth).  But claims that the US embargo has “impoverished” Cubans are equally false: Cuba has normal trading relations with almost every other nation (including Canada and Western Europe).  The source of Cuba’s poverty – the same poverty that is overtaking Venezuela now, after over a decade of socialist rule – is communism.  Communism simply does not work, and is government enforced robbery (as Pope Leo XIII made so clear).

So what do you think of this?  Will this improve the lot of Cuba’s suffering Catholic majority now? And, for a twist…will this now allow American evangelists to flood Cuba as they have so many other Latin American nations, and with a badly broken Church, woo millions of souls away from the Church Jesus Christ directly founded?

As for me, I generally oppose anything that makes communist rule easier.  We have helped keep over a billion Chinese prisoners of a repressive state by shifting most of our manufacturing base to that country.  25 years of free trade with China haven’t done much to improve that nation’s human rights record or served to  undermine the ruling oligarchy there, either.  So as far as I can tell, this was a move made simply because Cuba is every American leftist’s wet dream of a socialist paradise with “wonderful, free” health care (so wonderful it probably helped speed the demise of Hugo Chavez, may God have mercy on his soul).  And Obama is nothing if not an American leftist.

Not the abomination of desolation, but still bad: Creole, ummm…….Mass….at St. Peter’s December 16, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, Liturgy, Papa, sadness, scandals, secularism, Society.
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Ho boy:

Rome Reports calls this “creole,” but I’d call it more salsa or………I don’t know.  All I know is, what a wreck.

So maybe someone can find an exemption, but did problematic episodes of inculturation occur AT St. Peter’s during the previous pontificate? Maybe early on, before Pope Benedict dismissed the arch-modernist Marini (the bad one) as papal MC, an “affront” to which Marini is said to still hold a huge grudge?  But towards the end, at least the last few years, this kind of, I’ll say it, garbage, maybe happened at things like World Yute Day, but not at St. Peter’s?  Or am I misremembering?

h/t Boney

PS: This gets back to a point last week.  Seeing the wildly gesticulating performers, are such performances really about rendering honor and glory to God, or saying “LOOK AT ME!!!”?  I think the question not out of bounds, and that tends to be a troubling aspect about all lay involvement in the Mass, the hugely significant switch from Ad Orientem to versus poplum, priests with wireless mikes romping about the nave and sanctuary, and all the rest.  In all these things, there exists at least a serious temptation, if not, in all probability, a profound orientation, towards shifting the focus of the Mass – the Source and Summit of our Faith – from Jesus Christ, and onto the various “performers,” be they lectors, EMHCs, dancers, musicians, or whatever.

I sure know I have seen a lot of performers who crowd the very sanctuary seem to really, really get into what they are doing.

But blogging is totally different.  Not at all about attention-seeking, I swear.

Hmmm…….Pope Francis survey at US Catholic December 15, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in episcopate, fun, General Catholic, Liturgy, manhood, Papa, sadness, scandals, secularism, Society.
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Over at Unam Sanctam Catholicam, Boniface has a post notifying us of a survey at the very modernist US Catholic site, wherein you can give your opinion of the pontificate of Pope Francis in some detail, if you are so inclined.  I’m a little less than eager about this, because I hate to give such an unorthodox site the traffic, and really our opinions of Pope Francis don’s amount to squat in the grand scheme of things, and, perhaps in particular, with this pontiff.  There is also the notion that such a survey implies some view of a “democratic” Church, although I think that particular concern is more over the top than not.

So, if you feel inclined, you can fill out the survey here.  It is pretty long. Judging by the comments, it appears a lot of folks are more than a little troubled at the direction in the Church in the past 21 months.  But maybe this exercise could be something of a catharsis.

They do ask for your name and e-mail at the end.

Just to fill out this post with a bit more context, I was sent the following by two people yesterday (thanks).  It’s both kind of funny (barely kind of) and kind of sad, and just wow has the talent level at Saturday Night Live not just fallen, but jumped off a cliff:

It’s obviously intended as sort of a mean-spirited put down of the Church and especially the Mass, but from a traditional perspective it sure does show that a lot of criticisms made of the NO are also picked up on by the outside world, so to speak.  I do feel bad for pointing these things out at times, especially for those who have no alternative but to assist at the Novus Ordo, but this sketch does nail the mentality far too prevalent at far too many parishes. It also nails the result: collapsing Mass attendance and indifference towards the Faith.

 

Pretending that animals can go to Heaven is a condemned heresy – updated December 15, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, disaster, episcopate, foolishness, General Catholic, paganism, Papa, pr stunts, sadness, scandals, secularism, self-serving, the return.
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Lately, there have been many reports of statements from the highest level of Church authority that animals can go to Heaven. While those reports are, as of Friday (hey, guess what, I don’t read the interwebs from 11:30a Friday until nearly noon Monday, and so I miss some things!), in dispute, as far as most of the world is concerned, the statements were made. However, as the priest relates in the sermon below, such sentiments (even if not made by the pope, they have been made by many high Church leaders) appear to bear the hallmarks of Appollinarianism, a heresy condemned in the 4th century by both Pope St. Damasus and the First Council of Constantinople.

There are actually several aspects to this sermon.  One is an exhortation to remain joyful that we are faithful Catholics, that we know the Truth even amidst our failings.  That is an enormous blessing.  It is also a grave responsibility, because to whom much is given, must will be expected.  Nevertheless, for those who hold the orthodox Faith, retaining such is their highest duty but is an immeasurable Grace for which we must always be very thankful.

On Appollinarianism, Video Sancto contains the following summary:

Apollinarius (c. 360) held that the Logos or Word of God replaced the rational part of the Christ, leaving His lower soul to be same as that of an animal soul. If the Christ took up an animal soul, then animals could be redeemed! After all the Fathers taught: what is taken up by Christ is redeemed by Christ. This Apollinarian heresy was condemned by Pope St. Damasus I as well as St. Athanasius and First Council of Constantinople (381). Yet, this heresy seems to have come back in our times with the thought that animals can enter into paradise.

The sermon also contains a reflection on St. Juan Diego’s tilma as a type of the Church and Her role and mission.

Yes, animals do have souls. The soul is what gives life to the body.  But they do not have supernatural souls.  When the animal dies, the soul dies with it.

Even if you don’t listen to the whole thing, you simply have to listen to ~11:00 – 12:30. Should we have icons of St. Fido and St. Spot made? Will our dogs intercede for us in Heaven? I guess some very prominent Catholics might say, why intercede?  We’re all going to Heaven, anyway, except for those nasty old orthodox, traditional Catholics.

A local priest noted, along these same lines, that if animals go to Heaven, does that mean we have to watch out for rattlesnakes, or Ebola, or tapeworm, or amoebic dysentery?  Or is it only warm, cuddly mammals so beloved of liberals that go to Heaven?

I cannot admit to any particular knowledge of either the heresy of Appollinarianism nor of it’s implications for the salvation of animals, but priests on Audio or Video Sancto are generally right on so I tend to accept their claims in areas of which I am not well versed.

UPDATE: This post at Rorate is additional support for the priest’s basic claim.

Having said that, the priest’s argument makes eminent sense to me, as does his condemnation of those voices in the Church repeating old errors as novel theological developments.  I must say, the fact that leading Church-men would make these claims is a damning indictment of their formation.  We know that in most seminaries today, theological formation is weak at best and radically deformed at worst.  It has been that way going on 50 or more years now.  One of the prime areas of deficiency seems to be theological history, if you will –  knowledge of past doctrines defined which have been settled for so long their opposite – errors, even heresies – appear as novelties that many priests and bishops are ill-equipped to rebut.  Of course, many wonder if this lack of theological preparation has not been seen as a bug but as a feature to those who have sought to turn the Church in a modernist direction for over a century.  The problem is so widespread it certainly appears to me that a systematic effort to leave most priests rather deficient in theology (by historical or even a rational standard) has been at work for a long time.  And so we get Fr. Barron, ostensibly one of the most eminent “orthodox” theologians in the country opining that Adam and Eve were just theological poetry, or influential seminary theology professor Dr. Rick Gaillardetz pretending that only Ex Cathedra proclamations of a Pope amount to Dogma, and everything else, including the Resurrection of Christ, is debatable.

Modernists certainly do love confusion.  But they might love ignorance even more.

Thank God we have some priests who are well formed and can aid us in recognizing and refuting the many errors afoot in the Church today.

Pope Francis gives a surprising account on the Extraordinary Synod on the Family….. December 11, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, General Catholic, Society, silliness, Papa, episcopate, persecution, secularism, the return, SOD, huh?.
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Rorate linked to the CNS video below of a recent pronouncement made by Pope Francis regarding the Synod.  The account given below is in marked contrast to numerous reports – including those of a good number of participants – of a Synod that featured angry arguments and a literal rebellion against the radical changes the Synod organizers (which, it must be said, certainly included the Pope) wanted to introduce.  One might find some of the below incredible:

“Not one intervention questioned the fundamental truths of the sacrament of matrimony, not one, namely – indissolubility, unity, fidelity, and openness to life. This was not touched.

Some might ask, ‘Father, did not some of the bishops fight?’  I wouldn’t say fight, but they did speak strongly, that is true.  This is the freedom that exists in the church.

Everything happened with Peter and under Peter, that is, in the presence of the pope, who is a guarantee of all, of freedom and trust, and a guarantee of orthodoxy”

Those are certainly interesting statements.  One might wonder why the Pope felt it necessary to issue this clarification?  And how can the mid-term “Relatio,” the most controversial and upsetting portions of which were forcibly included in the final report of the first part of the Synod by the Pope, be squared with the statement that not one of the fundamental truths of the Sacrament of Matrimony was questioned?  There seems to be some radical division being expressed here, between allegedly pastoral actions that many fear will have the effect of obliterating Doctrine, and some kind of formal act taken to reverse or destroy that Doctrine. But I think many orthodox Catholics see that distinction as false.  Belief and practice – orthodoxy and orthopraxis – are inseparably linked.  One cannot allow in practice actions that have the effect of  undermining or even contradicting sacred beliefs held by the entire Church throughout Her history.

With regard to the final sentence – is it a correct understanding of Doctrine to assume that simply because some event in the Church occurs in the presence of the Pope, that is a total guarantee of orthodoxy at that event?  Can we not recall especially the first two Assisi conferences as troubling contraindications of this assumption?  What are the doctrinal implications of this assumption?  Does this not represent a strong potential for a massive widening of the very narrow infallibility protections possessed by a Pope when he speaks Ex Cathedra to define Doctrine for the universal Church?

Feeling the heat?  As Rorate notes, last week’s Papal interview featured some rather surprising statements regarding Cardinal Burke’s situation, and now this.

History indicates that Catholics must organize and fight for their rights against left-wing cultural oppression December 10, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, manhood, paganism, Papa, persecution, reading, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
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I have just about finished Fr. Bernard O’Reilly’s Life of Pope Leo XIII.  Interestingly, this book was published in 1886, only 8 years into Pope Leo’s pontificate.  Perhaps Fr. O’Reilly did not imagine Pope Leo would continue as pontiff for another 17 years!  He is the most long-lived pope in history.

The portion of the book I excerpt below deals with the situation facing the Church in France during the 1880s.  France was horribly riven and disfigured by the revolution.  A sizable portion of the populace fell into leftist errors and became inveterate enemies of the Church.  Whenever the liberals, so-called, gained power, the Church was persecuted to varying degrees.  The course of the 19th century for the Church in France was a constant see-saw between governments either highly hostile, or highly favorable, to the interests of the Church and the conduct of the Faith.  However, in 1885 a very antagonistic government was elected, primarily due to divisions among the large majority of still faithful French Catholics.  That new government unleashed the worst persecution the Church had yet seen in France, in some respects even worse than the original French Revolution. The government re-seized all Church property, banished religious orders (especially the Jesuits – it is amazing how far they have fallen), refused to pay priest’s salaries, and generally sought to crush the Church out of existence.  That the government was dominated by radical Church-hating masons should not be surprising.

Fr. O’Reilly sums up the situation facing France in 1885, which has eerie echoes of our own country in the early years of the 21st century.  There is much wisdom to be gleaned below.  One of the main points made by Fr. O’Reilly, is that this persecution came to pass because the faithful Catholics spent more time fighting each other than they did their inveterate enemies inside and outside the Church.  I see much the same happening today, and it is something I hope and pray we will see much less of.  With the Church in such an utter state of crisis, all those who hold a more or less orthodox point of view should be coming together and fighting our common enemies, rather than engaging in the constant circular firing squads.  Posting attacks on fellow, predominately faithful Catholics (even if we think they err on one point or another) may be great for traffic, but it only plays into the hands of the enemy of us all:

Nothing could arrest the progress of the decatholicizating spirit in France – nothing but the fear of a civil war.  Of this, however, there was no danger.  The Catholics – the nominal Catholics, at least – allowed every constitutional agency for asserting their own will to be taken from them by their determined, sleepless, unscrupulous, and energetic enemies.  The public offices, from the highest to the lowest in the state, the ballot box, the parliamentary representation, the army and navy – all was taken away from them by degrees, and that because they lacked union and organization.  [And, at least partly, leadership. While the French episcopate did challenge the evil acts of the government, they did not lead in organizing a firm, united resistance. They, too, were too riven with division to lead a cohesive response.  Does that not sound quite a bit like or situation today?  But ours is even worse, for the large majority of self-described Catholics are gone over to the side of the opponents of the Faith, and even most of the leadership of the Church is either too lost in error, too self-interested, or too far gone to the side of radicalism themselves to be interested in helping form a cohesive response.  If a response is to be made, if we are to fight the rapid slide of the culture into anti-Christian pogroms and the rankest immorality, the laity shall have to lead the fight themselves.  I have suggested many times that the only power the laity have is the power of the purse, but it seems few are comfortable being more selective in what elements of the Church the monetarily support]

It is one of the saddest spectacles of modern times to see thirty million French Catholic citizens virtually disenfranchised, oppressed, and deprived of their most precious religious liberties by a small minority, because they did not know how to forget their political dissentiments, to unite like one man to assert their rights, and to use every means allowed by the constitution and by conscience to withstand the usurpations of a godless minority.  [We do not have like numbers today. While there are ~65 million nominal Catholics in the United States today, the number who accept all the Church believes and could be counted as truly orthodox and faithful might be 10% of that number, at most.  We are severely outnumbered by the godless at present]

What is most saddening in this condition of a nation which had played so glorious a part in Christendom is to see the downward progress of Socialism and Anarchism keep a steady pace with the legislative and administrative measures which, step by step, dechristianize every one of the public institutions of France, [Or the United States, and which constantly foist more and more offensive immoralities on all of us] and bring the Church within the jurisdiction of a republic in many respects worse than the one of 1794-5.…..

…..It was for the French Catholics themselves, constituting the great mass of the nation……to come together, to take counsel, as they did in Germany at the approach of danger. [This refers to the effective organization of German Catholics against the kulturkampf instituted by Bismarck in the early 1870s] It behooved them in presence of the enemy to forget all private or local differences, all party feuds…….and to remember only that they were Catholics.  It behooved them, speaking in the name of a Catholic nation, to draw up a declaration of their religious rights……..which should commend itself to all civilized men in the world in favor of full religious liberty and the sacred laws which guard the family, the home, the school, and the Church.

————End Quote————

I do not want to be misunderstood. I am not saying that the differences between, say, a Dr. Jeff Mirus and a John Vennari are trivial.  There are very important differences.  I would even say that people like Mirus, Barron, and most of the Patheos writers believe or at least publicly profess some quite problematic things. They would probably say the same about Vennari and quite possibly yours truly.  The vast majority of these types of conservative Catholics, if that is the right term, seem unable or unwilling to recognize the crisis in the Faith.  But that is not my concern in this post.

I strive not to go to war with people I identify as being basically on the side of right.  I may disagree with Dr. Mirus’ jumbled logic in trying to reconcile aspects of Guadium Et Spes with the preceding Magisterium, but I probably agree with him on 95% or more of matters related to the Faith.  I have to wonder if constantly whittling down the number of “faithful” to basically me and my tribe is an effective strategy in opposing the ongoing cultural collapse and rising persecution?  Are some of these circular firing squads really about formulating an effective response to both internal and external threats to the Faith, or are they more about assuring ourselves that we and our tribe are the sole possessors of all the Truth?

I may not be expressing myself very well, what I am trying to say is that, compared to what is going on in the world, the differences between various types of relatively faithful Catholics are quite small. I am not saying “go be like neo-Catholics.”  But I am saying, in facing existential external threats to the Faith and a rising persecution, should there not be room to put aside some of our differences and work together against the common threat?  They did not do so in France in the 1880s, when Catholics were in the strong majority, and the result was disaster.  Now, we are a tiny minority.  Will we respond in the same manner?

 

Putting our heads in the sand regarding the crisis will do us no good….. December 3, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, episcopate, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Papa, sanctity, scandals, secularism, self-serving, the return.
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…..and that extends all the way up to the problems at the highest level of Church authority.  So says the dyspeptic Dale Price in a post that echoes my own opinions (but better said), dismissing the constant apologias of the Patheos set and advising “never go full ostrich, son:”

Yes, Burke was purged. The happy-clappy interpretations are…less than, he says as gently as possible.

Two critical facts missed in all of the “hey, it was term limits!” arguments:

First, this is the second kick from the Pope this year, with the first being from the Congregation of Bishops. After which, we got Cupich in Chicago, for starters. Anybody else gotten a double removal like Burke? Nope.
Second, Burke being shuffled to a sinecure means he won’t be able to participate in the 2015 version of the Synod. Just when his voice will be needed most, after a year of Cupich-y or Leow-ish appointments to the episcopate, he’ll be on the outside looking in…….
…….Still, why should you care?

Number 1, “Vatican politics” gives you your bishop. Cupich, remember. In other words, “Personnel is policy.”  [Dang right. If you ever want complete confirmation as to what a person believes, or where their emphases lie, see who they hire and fire.  Doing so casts Pope Benedict’s pontificate in a less-favorable-to-tradition light] If it’s “clericalism” to worry about who your shepherd is going to be, then we should all be clericalists. [As some really holy nuns in Kansas City, MO may find to their dismay pretty soon]
Second, there’s a trend here, and it’s pretty much all bad:

Pope Francis has made statements against the two tendencies of progressivism and traditionalism, without however clarifying what these two labels encompassed. Yet, if by words he distances himself from the two poles which confront each other in the Church today, by facts all tolerance is reserved for “progressivism”, while the axe falls upon what he defines as “traditionalism”. [RE: Actions, words, louder than]

Precisely. If you’re a solid progressive, you get high-profile invites to significant Church events even if you’re a coddler of abusive priests. [Read more about the dreadful Danneels in the reliably rad-trad Tablet.] Sadly, it appears that mercy is only for those of confirmed progressivebona fides. Whereas demotions, removals and defenestrations of entire orders are reserved only for those with the odor of Tradition.

But I’m sure none of that would ever percolate down to the local level, right?

Right.  And even if it does, what can I do?  Shouldn’t I just pray, pay, and obey?

What was it he said about we’re all clericalists, now?  Funny how all that post-VII empowerment goes out the window when the lay people start getting lippy.

All the problems of our society date back that tragic year 1517 December 3, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, episcopate, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Papa, secularism, Society, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
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That is the opinion of the great pontiff Pope Leo XIII.  I won’t give much introduction since the excerpt below is long.  The excerpt contains both some exposition from the author of the bio of Pope Leo XIII, Fr. O’Reilly, as well as a quote from Pope Leo XIII’s letter to the Cardinal Archbishop of Cologne in 1880.  Taken together, they lay out how protestant errors have resulted inevitably in the socialism, materialism, hedonism, and indifference to God we see all around us in the shattered remains of Christendom.  They also stand in stark contrast to how most in the Church, including the highest leadership, propose to approach society, heretical sects, and even philosophy and theology today:

[Pope Leo XIII]………traces all the moral aberrations and political disorders of our age and of modern times to the introduction, in the sixteenth century particularly, of a false and anti-Christian philosophy, which ignores any authority superior to individual reason, eliminates all the supernatural order from the domain of the intellect and of private and social life, and enthrones naturalism, rationalism, and individualism as the law-givers in through and action of human society.

While, in his first encyclicals, he clearly warns………the entire Catholic flock of the necessity of returning, if society is to be saved form imminent ruin, to obedience to the Church, to the docile acceptance of the teaching of the one divinely appointed authority on earth, he affirms that the false wisdom or philosophy which the last three centuries [now nearly five] have followed must be set aside and Christian wisdom and philosophy made the light of all education.

A false and fatal education, in conformity with the naturalism and rationalism above mentioned, has, like the flickering of a “will o’ the wisp” in a dark night, led modern society into the marshes in which it is floundering.  Religion, Christianity, Catholicism must now come with the already unfailing lamp of her divine philosophy, extricating social order from it mortal peril, and lead it back to the old paths.

This false education, this anti-Christian training of more than three hundred years has misled and ruined the Christendom reared by the Church; the old educational methods must be put in use again.

And Thomas Aquinas must once more be enthroned as “the Angel of the Schools”‘ his method and doctrine must be the light of all higher teaching, for his works are only revealed truth set before the human mind in its most scientific form.

Let there be no misunderstanding in this Leo XIII’s teaching.  He is not for setting aside as pernicious, or useless, or hostile to revelation what Christian theologians, philosophers, and scientists acknowledge as true science. [The problem in our present state of calamity is that there are few reliable theologians, philosophers, or scientists to turn to who are not thoroughly imbued with that same spirit of rationalism and rejection of Divine Revelation that Pope Leo lamented and opposed throughout his pontificate. We have so few reliable voices to turn to, even including the recent past, and we have popes intimating that evolution might be valid (which Pope Leo and others totally rejected), that Genesis 1-10 might be sort of “mystical poetry” in parts, etc.  And so Catholics no longer know where to turn to understand how or whether to accept theories like evolution, which were really proposed as a way to undermine the traditional Creation ethos and the whole of Christian belief that spins out from that]  Writing on February 24, 1880 to the Archbishop of Cologne, he clearly expresses the value he sets on such science, while affirming the necessity of the counter-education we are here describing:

“The pest of socialism….which so deeply perverts the sense of our population, derives all its power from the darkness it causes in the intellect by hiding the light of the eternal truths, and from its corrupting the rule of life laid down by Christian morality; it can never be extirpated till the minds of its dupes are brought back to a clear knowledge of the supremely true and supremely good….To bring them thus back……is our duty….For, albeit in our age such wonderful and incredible progress – as all confess – has been made in the arts pertaining to the comfort of life as well as in the natural sciences, nevertheless the corruption of public manners goes on daily increasing.  And as the history of past times has taught us that what brings erring nations back from the wrong path and preserves them from ruin is not progress in the arts or natural sciences, but their fervor in learning and fulfilling the law of Christ, we therefore ardently desire that the Church should everywhere be in the full enjoyment of her liberty, that she may bestow on the nations the benefits of this saving doctrine.

There is in the Pontiff’s mind and purpose no antagonism to true progress and the legitimate developments of all the arts and sciences; for these follow naturally, inevitably on the increase in Christian knowledge and Christian morality in all communities. [An interesting corollary: there is growing concern among some scientists that it seems the pace of scientific breakthrough, which gained pace throughout the 19th century (as Christendom was dying out) and then reached its peak in the first half of the 20th century, has fallen off rapidly.  Certainly we continue to benefit from new technologies, especially computer and communications related, but the fundamental discoveries that power the devices we enjoy now were made 50-100 years ago, and there hasn’t been nearly the same level of discovery since.  Some forecast that the pace of invention and improvement in the quality of life – if it can be called that – will start to slacked and peter out as a result.  According to Leo XIII, that would be due to the collapse in Christianity] But what he aims at is to make the fullness of truth, natural and supernatural, the very life of the mind by setting both the one and the other before it is stripped of all doubt and error, like the pure light presented to the sound bodily eye, entering it of its own accord and giving that organ its life by placing it in the full enjoyment of its proper object. And not that only, but the Pontiff aims at giving to the will, in this prefect light of the natural and supernatural world made known to it, the moral law of Christ, embracing not only what God has written on our hearts in the law of nature, but the supernatural law of love and divine self-sacrifice which the Father has written for us in luminous letters in the words and actions of Christ, His Incarnate Son.

————–End Quote————–

As I’ve blogged before, and as good Pope Leo XIII knew, protestantism and rationalism, combined with Cartesian philosophy, served to create an the “modern scientific ethos” which utterly rejects ANY evidence that is not strictly natural.  That same science is then used to attack and “disprove” religion, especially Catholicism.  Modern science was more or less designed by its founders to be antagonistic to Catholicism, and to be a weapon to be used against  the Faith.  Thus we should take “science-based” attacks on our Faith with a huge grain of salt, and not be afraid to use the “old” medieval, Scholastic arguments against modern science.  It’s truly a situation where one faith-based community is arguing with another – it’s evangelizing a hostile religion.

And Richard Dawkins and others like him are its high priests.

 

Whoa…..have you read Rorate’s “very important post?” December 1, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, catachesis, episcopate, General Catholic, Papa, sadness, scandals, shocking, the return.
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Rorate had a string of very compelling, if often disturbing, posts over the past week.  One of the most disconcerting came just today, when Rorate quoted Pope Francis in his general audience from last Wednesday as follows:

This is the Church’s destination: it is, as the Bible says, the “new Jerusalem”, “Paradise”. More than a place, it is a “state” of soul in which our deepest hopes are fulfilled in a superabundant way and our being, as creatures and as children of God, reach their full maturity. We will finally be clothed in the joy, peace and love of God, in a complete way, without any limit, and we will come face to face with Him! (cf. 1 Cor 13:12). It is beautiful to think of this, to think of Heaven. All of us will be up there together, all of us! [Tutti noi ci troveremo lassù, tutti.] It is beautiful, it gives strength to the soul.

I will just leave that quote lie, without comment, and move on to the “very important post,” which ties in with my own concerns and thoughts over the past several months, regarding the abdication of Pope Benedict, the 2013 Conclave, and the subsequent election of Pope Francis. No, there is nothing at all questioning the validity of either the abdication or the election of Pope Francis as Sovereign Pontiff, but it would be of great help to know just who the turncoats were who helped bring that entire process about.

What is addressed below is the notion – one might even call it a fact – that Cardinal Bergoglio was the nominee of the very progressive wing of the Church in both the 2005 and 2013 conclaves. He was seen as the intellectual and moral standard bearer for the extremely progressive Cardinal Martini, and after Martini’s death was anointed as his successor.  A recent book from a Church insider associated with that liberal faction claimed that a number of progressive cardinals planned and maneuvered to see Cardinal Bergoglio elected in both conclaves, and gave some details as to who they were and how they worked.  You can read this post at Rorate for some additional, if cryptic, information.  But the really interesting part of the post deals with how Pope Benedict may have been maneuvered into abdication, and which seeming “friends” of his may have played a large role in convincing the former pontiff to take this unprecedented step:

What we have is a kind of Watergate in which there is a resignation … but there is no trail of what led to it. It is as if Nixon had suddenly resigned, and all he said was it was due to old age or tiredness, but nobody knew exactly why. (The obvious differences in character between both individuals and events are irrelevant to our point.)  Isn’t it, to say the least, very curious?

We cannot provide details (it is up to serious and confident and daring investigative journalists who wish to truly go deep into what took place between 2011-12 and the March 2013 conclave), but, inspired by the example of Our Lord and God Jesus Christ when He needed to express absolutely true yet difficult messages, we can provide the following parable. It should be of great help to those willing to at last investigate all details carefully. The work is ready for those willing to dig deeper.

A successful executive has reached the age of optional retirement in a very good job at a major global corporation. He does not have to retire just yet, but he is convinced by people, among whom a few (one? a couple?) of his closest friends and aides, who assure him, before he actually decides to retire, that someone he trusts and groomed for his position will replace him, prompting his early retirement. He retires, confident that his good work will now be kept. But actually the people who convinced him were acting on behalf of an old adversary of his, who is then picked for his former position.

Now, his retirement is perfectly valid and legal, and the selection of his adversary (even if made with wily procedures) is as well, it’s just that some of his friends were not really such.

Life goes on in global corporations, as they say.

I would be highly interested to learn Rorate’s source on all this, but good luck with that.  I know they have access to way more resources than I do, and even have some high level individuals contribute to the site from time to time.  The parable makes compelling reading, and would add a dimension to the abdication that would make Pope Benedict’s actions much more sensical than the official reason given, which, I don’t think I’m saying anything radical here, seemed pretty weak to a large number of pious souls.  We must always bear in mind that both the Vatileaks scandal and the whole dossier/sodomite mafia in the Roman priesthood thing just disappeared the second the abdication was announced.  Those matters were definitely tied together.

Put the events together this way: an aging and highly divisive pontiff, assailed by a constant drip-drip of scandals he cannot forestall, and with threats of much more damaging scandals to come, is approached by some very trusted friend(s) and advisor(s), and told that all will be well if he will simply abdicate, that while he is loved by many there are some leftover hotheads from the previous regime who despise him, but that if he does step down a very close and trusted protege is “guaranteed” to take his place.  All will continue as before and Pope Benedict can finally move onto that much desired retirement of books and study.  Doubtful at first, the idea appealed too much to the good Pope’s pride, exhaustion, and weakness and he succumbed to repeated entreaties, even if another advisor, a man even more hated than he, constantly warned the good Pope not to accept this “compromise,” that it entailed enormous danger for the Church.

I bet it’s not at all far from that. All that is left is to fill in the names and dates.

So, who wants to front me in Rome for a year so I can do some hardcore investigatin?

 

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