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God’s Mercy is most evident in His Justice February 26, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Bible, catachesis, episcopate, error, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Papa, persecution, scandals, secularism, SOD, the struggle for the Church, Tradition, Virtue.
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The Gospel for the First Monday of Lent in the Traditional Latin Mass is from Saint Matthew XXV:31-46, which is the parable of the sheep and the goats at the Last Judgment.  This parable in St. Matthew’s Gospel followed that of the servants given talents to dispose of while their master was on a journey.  Both parables make very clear that we shall be judged according to our use of the gifts God gives us and, fundamentally, on our love for each other.

Dom Prosper Gueranger has a brief exegesis on this Gospel and its relevance to Lent, wherein he touches on the subject that Our Lord, in the very act of exercising His Justice, is also exercising His Mercy, even if that true mercy is not the sentimentality and worldliness the worldlings would expect:

Our Lord there put forth every argument which love could devise, to persuade His lost sheep to return to Him; and here, on the very same day that the Church speaks to us of our God as being a gentle and compassionate Shepherd, she describes Him as an inflexible Judge. This loving Jesus, this charitable Physician of our souls, is seated on His dread tribunal, and cries out in His anger: Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire! (Matt XXV:41).  And where has the Church found this awful description? In the Gospel, that is, in the very Law of love. But if we read our passage attentively, we shall find that He who pronounces this terrible anathema is the same God, whom the prophet has been just portraying as a Shepherd full of mercy, patience, and zeal for His sheep.  Observe how He is still a Shepherd, even on His judgment seat: He separates the sheep from the goats; He sets the sheep on His right hand, and the goats on His left; the comparison of a flock is still kept up.  The Son of God will exercise His office of Shepherd even to the last day: only then, time will be at an end, and eternity will have begun; the reign of justice, too, will have succeeded the reign of mercy, for it is justice that will reward the good with the promised recompense, and that will punish impenitent sinners with eternal torments.  How can the Christian, who believes that we are all to stand before this tribunal, refuse the invitation of the Church, who now presses him to make satisfaction for his sins?  How can he hesitate to go through those easy penances, with which the Divine Mercy now deigns to be satisfied?  Truly, man is his own worst enemy, if he can disregard these words of Jesus, who now is his Savior, and then will be his Judge: “Unless ye do penance, ye shall all perish” (St. Luke XIII:3).

———-End Quote———

I found this to be the key bit: “The Son of God will exercise His office of Shepherd even to the last day……..the reign of justice, too, will have succeeded the reign of mercy, for it is justice that will reward the good with the promised recompense, and that will punish impenitent sinners with eternal torments.”

It is key, because it reveals that mercy can only be extended to the unrepentant by being unjust to the repentant.  That is to say, by extending blanket “mercy” (of a very worldly form) to those continuing unrepentant in grave sin, a grave injustice is being done to those have endured the great pain and difficulty of either eschewing, or repenting and, through Grace, overcoming, those sins.

Let alone the injury caused to God by just one sin, let alone heaping sacrilege upon sacrilege, sin upon sin, by admitting unrepentant souls guilty of grave, public sin to the Blessed Sacrament, this blind pursuit of pseudo-mercy (it won’t seem so merciful, I fear, at their judgment) is manifestly unjust to those who have always striven to observe the moral Doctrine of the Faith.

The parable of the prodigal son has been tossed around quite a bit lately, but almost every reference I have seen to it misses one incredibly key aspect, the aspect that defines the entire parable: the prodigal son was repentant!  Yes, he had sinned, but he repented, and was committed to sin no more.  So of course he received the Father’s mercy……but only AFTER he had repented, not before.  He did not say………”Father, I’ve blown my inheritance, after I declared you dead to me…….can’t I declare you double-dead and receive another chunk of inheritance, so I can fritter it away again?”  No, he said: “Father, I have sinned before you and before God. I am not worthy to be called your son.  Make me one of your servants…….”  But that repentance is inconvenient to the new sentiment masquerading as mercy, and so is forgotten.

Again, the point that must be stressed is that God is being merciful even in the execution of His Justice.  God is incapable of being unmerciful.  By sending the goats to the everlasting fire, he was giving them what they wanted, what they had spent their life pursuing – an existence without God.  He is being doubly merciful to the sheep, as they are brought to eternal bliss, yes, but also by preserving them from being scandalized at seeing the goats admitted to their presence without repentance.  In fact, you can parse this down to several other levels of mercy, but I’ll skip that for now.

God IS Mercy and God IS Love and God IS Justice……..and the 200o year development of the Doctrine of the Faith is the recognition and explication of that undeniable fact.  Anyone that cuts against that Doctrine, or undermines it, is striving to dismember God from Himself.

ISIS calls for terror alliance with radical left to conquer Rome – by 2020 February 26, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Christendom, disaster, Ecumenism, error, General Catholic, horror, martyrdom, persecution, secularism, sickness, Society, unadulterated evil.
11 comments

The radical left hasn’t answered, yet, but this is more or less what I expected to happen: the radical left and islam would eventually come together to work to crush their most dread enemy, Christendom.  Or what remains of Christendom.

Lord, have mercy on all of us:

The Islamist terrorist group ISIS is instructing Muslim sympathizers in Europe (and presumably the United States) to seek out leftist activists to form an “armed combat” alliance.

The armed alliance against European governments will further ISIS’s goal to conquer Rome by 2020.

The call to recruit leftists is in an eBook entitled Black Flags from Rome. The eBook is the subject of a two part report by Bridget Johnson at PJ Media. (Excellent reporting in bothpart one and part two.)

While Western leftist groups like Obama funder group Code Pink , ANSWER , and ISM have given political support and humanitarian aid to Islamist terrorists, there have been no readily apparent instances of Western leftists joining Islamist terrorist groups in committing terrorist acts in recent years.

Leftist terrorism in the West of late has been largely about the environment and animal rights. There were some attacks planned by leftists allied with the Occupy movement that were mostly ineffective or were disrupted by law enforcement. The anarchist Black Bloc groups have mainly attacked property and mostly used non-lethal weapons in protests.

……ISIS writes that a good place to recruit leftists is at anti-Israel protests. [Well they’re nothing if not practical.  Pretty astute tactic]

ISIS is counting on frustration among some leftists at their inability to change the system combined with admiration for the strength of Islamists “to fight against the injustices of the world” to prove fertile in recruiting them to form a terror alliance against the West………

I had an offline discussion a while back with a reader who thought that eventually the Left would rise up in opposition to islam and fight it, because islam is so repressive of so many cherished Leftist shibboleths.  I thought that wrong, the political Left, and especially its extreme wing, is based on self-loathing and a visceral hatred for the established order of Western culture, based on the Catholic Faith, reason, the rights of the individual, and ownership of private property.  Their hatred is stronger than their love.  And, deep down, even committed leftists know the worldly, materialist, sexualist lifestyle they promote is unfulfilling and bereft of meaning.  Fundamentally, the left’s greatest enemy, going back to well before the French Revolution, is the Catholic Church/Christianity.  It is thus a diabolical movement at least to some degree, and many on the left, I believe, will willingly submit to islam when it comes down to it.  In fact, many are already doing so today, it is not young men (and women) of the right who are joining ISIS in large numbers from Europe, but mostly those on the left and the disaffected.

Yes, there will be committed leftists of a more libertarian stripe who will be violently opposed to an encroaching islam, but many will eagerly hop on what they perceive as the “strong horse” either out of conviction or convenience.  We may even get to see in our lifetime former libertines who used to advance the grossest immoralities calling for women to wear the hijab (or burqa) and barbaric repression of sodomites.

Anyway…….I think that a greater likelihood than some great left wing resistance to the advance of islam.  What resistance there is will come from Christians, because only a competing religious conviction can stand against another.

May the blood of all the Catholic martyrs of islamic atrocities, and their prayers, lead to the restoration of our Church!

The black flag of jihad flying over St. Peter's in a photoshopped image.  Will we  let this happen?

The black flag of jihad flying over St. Peter’s in a photoshopped image. Will we let this happen?

A fairly balanced assessment of the new Doctor of the Church February 26, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in disconcerting, Ecumenism, episcopate, General Catholic, huh?, Papa, pr stunts, religious, scandals, secularism, Society, the struggle for the Church.
17 comments

I think  many were surprised when Pope Francis announced the 36th Doctor of the Church was not even a Catholic, but a member of the Armenian Orthodox Church.  I know Ann Barnhart has addressed this matter in her usual detached and understated way, but I thought Eliot Bougis’ coverage might be a bit more balanced.

What do we know of this Saint few in the Western Church had heard of before Sunday, Gregory of Narek (ca. 950-1005)?  Well, we know he was a stgregorymember of the Armenian Orthodox Church, which has oft been described as a Monophysite Church that failed to approve the Council of Chalcedon, rather like many Coptic churches.  However, the Armenians dispute this and claim to be Miaphysites, holding a nuanced position between that adopted at Chalcedon and the condemned heresy of Monophysitism. Both positions have to do with not the personage of Christ, but his nature.  Catholics believe Christ is both God and man with a divine and human nature, whereas monophysites hold that Christ may have been God and man but only had one (divine) nature.  Miaphysites occupy a position somewhat in between.  All of these discussions on the person, nature, and will of Christ can become very complex very fast and very small differences in language (including the effects of translation) can have a big impact.  If you want a strong opinion on Miaphysitism, read Barnhart’s piece.

With that background, some thoughts and questions from Mr. (Dr.?) Bougis, who doesn’t reject the elevation on the grounds of heresy, but does wonder how this can be reconciled with many troubling factors:

The AOC, the body to which Gregory belonged, has formally and persistently rejected the authority of the Council of Chalcedon, was not in communion with Rome during Gregory’s life, and highly venerates Gregory, who was (as Ann Barnhardt strongly emphasizes) a miaphysite. “The main difference,” notes the just cited AOC website, “between the Byzantine tradition, also known as Chalcedonian churches and the Armenian Church, (together with other non-Chalcedonian churches) has been on the issue of Christology, i.e., the dogma related to Christ’s Divine and Human natures.”……

……..So, a saint venerated in a fellowship that has for centuries rejected Chalcedon–a council universally binding on the Catholic Church–is considered a Doctor of the Catholic Church. Are there any other councils that one might reject while still enjoying exemplary ecclesial status–say, Trent or Vatican II[Great points. Traditionally, rejection of an ecumenical Council, especially one of the famous first four, was seen as admission of heresy and status as excommunicate.  But we all know all the old rules have been thrown out and we’re just sort of making things up as we go along]

Does this elevation not also canonize Gregory? How could it not? If he is but a provincially revered saint in an ancient but schismatic Christian communion, how can he be considered a universal Doctor? Are there any other Doctors of the Church who are not also celebrated in her liturgy as saints?* Are there any other Doctors who belonged to schismatic bodies? [Uh…….no]

………Am I the only one who thinks this cause, which had been underway for some time, was executed with such celerity in order to throw a grim but timely light on one of Pope Francis’s favorite themes, “the ecumenism of blood”? As he most recently put it: “Be they Catholic, Orthodox, Copts, Lutherans, it doesn’t matter: They’re Christian! The blood is the same: It is the blood which confesses Christ”. [I had not seen this quote before.  This is one of the most clearly problematic statements I’ve seen from Pope Francis, and seems very difficult to comprehend as other than representing a distressing indifference]

* [I’ve since learned that Gregory is in fact in the Church’s most recent martyrology, but not in the earlier edition, and is mentioned as a saint in the CCC, so this just confirms my instinct to see something beautiful here, regardless of how it might be spun for this or that ideological fetish. {Further research leaves me uncertain once more. Did Rome recognize Gregory of Narek’s sanctity as recently and suddenly as 2001/2005? What’s going on here?}]

Personally, I find this elevation at the least quite imprudent, and at worst, gravely scandalous.  This is sort of “ecumenism” by default – sure, we don’t safe_imagebelieve the same things, but we’ll just paper over the differences and pretend we do!  Then, we’ll elevate each other’s holy people to “saints!”

You know I’m a former episcopalian.  The Anglican Church has its own calendar of “saints,” and quite a calendar it is!  It includes such notable non-Anglicans as Martin Luther King and Ghandi (among many, many others, including a number of post-Reformation Catholics!). Over time, it has become an increasingly worldly list, with an always leftist drift.  Is that what we can look forward to in the steady episcopalianizing of the Catholic Church?  Will we have Saint Cesar Chavez and Saint Barack Obama one day?  How about a “Saint Mohammad?”

I know the ecumenical dimension probably was dominant in this act, but I cannot help but think an almost equally important aspect was the sowing of enormous confusion.  Can we not even trust Doctors of the Church anymore?  And is the standard not getting watered down quite a bit?  For over 1500 years, there were always recognized 8 Doctors, four Latin and four Greek.  Two more, Aquinas and Bonaventure, were added in the 16th century. Since that time, and especially since 1925, the title has proliferated and now it seems every Pope must name at least one (if not several) Doctors.  Certainly I download (3)have no problem with the likes of Teresa of Avila or Robert Bellarmine being accorded such an honor, but I do think the rapid proliferation of the awarding of this distinction is tending to water down its import.  It took 1900 years to recognize 23 Doctors, whereas 13 have been recognized in less than 100 years.  I note the only modern popes (since Pius VII) NOT to name a Doctor of the Church have been Gregory XVI and Saint Pius X – both incredibly holy men not much given to hubris.

Maybe I’m getting too crotchety.  I don’t know, what’s not to like about another Doctor of the Church?  Why do I always have to complain?  It just seems a bit too cute, a bit too……worldly?

What’s funny, is that just four years ago I read a book The Thirty Three Doctors of the Church.  Just in a few years, that book has become quite out of date.

 

Obama Administration demands Catholic charities provide abortion for immigrant children February 26, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, Basics, contraception, disaster, episcopate, error, General Catholic, horror, Immigration, persecution, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sexual depravity, sickness, Society, the struggle for the Church, unadulterated evil.
6 comments

I am sorry to say, before getting into the latest act of barbarity enacted by Obama against the Church (and believing Christians generally – and compare this to his approach to muslims, with the kid gloves on ISIS and constant apologias and “fabric of the country” and all that – I still cannot believe that most mainstream conservative commentators view calling Obama a marxist muslim Manchurian candidate out of bounds), I should say this: do we not know how this will play out?  Even with public demonstrations of opposition and most likely court challenges, do we not know that Amchurch, and especially the charitable organizations associated with the USCCB, already cooperate with the federal agenda of evangelizing for the sexular pagan religion and already cooperate with abortion providers and distributors of contraception (including abortifacients) on a wide basis?  Is that not what the continual scandals coming out of Catholic Relief Services tell us?  Even more, have not CRS and other organs basically said they have to cooperate with the sexular pagan agenda (in the form of these wicked collaborating organizations) in order to maintain that oh-so-wonderful federal funding?

Maybe I’m getting jaded, but while I’m sure the USCCB and other Church authorities and others pray hope the courts may provide some relief, if push comes to shove, I am pretty skeptical that Catholic organs will stand on sacred Doctrine and take the admittedly huge hit of losing federal funding should it actually come to that.  I think Obama knows this, which is why he continues to press and press and press.

Anyway, the report:

The Obama administration is getting ready to issue new rules requiring charities to provide abortions to child refugees entering the US without their parents. Faith-based groups say this is a contravention of the rights of parents and a violation of the conscience rights of faith-based groups helping resettle the children.

The public has until Monday to comment on the fast-tracked new rules, which were issued on Christmas Eve.  [Obama is fast-tracking everything in his bid to “fundamentally transform” this nation into a muslim communist kleptocracy] The administration says it would be “contrary to the public interest” to wait “until a public notice and comment process is complete.” [Meaning, contrary to his political interest] The administration also asserts that no Congressional review is required and that there is no issue with federalism or any impact on families in the new guidance.

The rules require faith-based providers to make referrals for emergency contraception, partner with groups which provide abortion, or notify the federal government which would make arrangements for the abortion. If groups do not do so, they are not eligible for federal aid. Staff associated with Catholic agencies told the Friday Fax that they had conveyed their objection to the new rules to the Obama administration. They are required to comply no later than June 24, 2015.

[And that’s not all!…..] The rules also require care provider facilities to train their staff in “LGBTQI” and identifying “transgender and intersex” unaccompanied children. The rules assert that “‘Gender’ refers to the attitudes, feelings, and behaviors that a given culture associates with a person’s biological sex,” and that “This term is not to be confused with ‘sex’ [which] refers to a person’s biological status and is typically categorized as male, female, or intersex.” [And, if that “transgender” 10 year old demands hormone treatment, under rules approved by the Obama administration recently, the aid agency would be required to provide those, too. This is beyond incredible, and, with abortion on demand for underage youth and even gender mutilation being provided gratis per the American taxpayer (my God this Obama hates this country with white hot passion), what enormous new avenues will be available to the child sex trade!  Not only will the Obama administration make it incredibly easy to sneak children into this country and allow them to stay permanently, but with no parental involvement slave traders can get them abortions when pregnant, get boys turned into more lucrative girls, etc.  Has anyone even remotely thought of the potential for the gravest evils in all this?  Or is that bug actually a feature?  How many times has Bill Clinton been to “pedophile island?”]

I hate this sick world more and more and more.  I’m sure the USCCB will go to court, and may even win.  But if they somehow don’t…….don’t you imagine a papered over face saving non-change “change” and then continuation with business as usual?

Scandal!? Vatican official intercepted orthodox book at 2014 Synod? February 26, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, persecution, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sickness, Society, SOD, the return, the struggle for the Church.
23 comments

The report below is getting wide coverage.  Something may come along to refute or cast doubt on it, but, then again, we have seen apologias for pretty much iron-clad events for the past two  years solid.

The book Remaining in the Faith of Christ, an anthology of contributions from relatively orthodox sources such as Cardinal Burke, Cardinal Muller, and others, which was intended to be distributed to all Synod members this past October, was apparently intercepted by Pope Francis’ hand-picked Synod administrator, Cardinal Baldisseri, who asserted that the book would “interfere” with the conduct of the Synod.

The source for the below is the generally reliable Edward Pentin.  If true, this is utterly amazing, and rather puts the lie both to the talk of “mercy” we’ve been hearing as well as the calls for “open and honest” discussion.  Apparently, “open” discussion can only be had from one side:

A Vatican department allegedly intercepted over a hundred copies of a new book written by five cardinals to prevent it being read by the majority of participants of a synod last October called by Pope Francis.

“Remaining in the Truth of Christ,” a commercially successful book reaffirming Catholic teaching on marriage and the family, was mailed to all the synod fathers in the Paul VI Hall, where the meeting was taking place.

Reliable and high level sources allege the head of secretariat of the synod of bishops, Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri, ordered they be intercepted because they would “interfere with the synod.”
A source told me that Baldisseri was “furious” the book had been mailed to the participants and ordered staff at the Vatican post office to ensure they did not reach the Paul VI Hall.

Those responsible for mailing the books meticulously tried to avoid interception, ensuring the copies were sent through the proper channels within the Italian and Vatican postal systems. The synod secretariat nevertheless claims they were mailed “irregularly,” without going through the Vatican post office, and so had a right to intercept them.

The book’s mailers strongly refute this, saying they were legitimately mailed. Some copies were successfully delivered…….
…….Sources say it’s not clear where the intercepted copies of the book ended up, but believe they may have been destroyed. Asked in December about the claims, Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi said he “knew nothing” about the allegations and said the sources did not seem to him to be “serious and objective.”

Since then the allegations have become more widely known and have been corroborated at the highest levels of the church.

My goodness.  We’ve learned a fair amount of Cardinal Baldisseri, of late, including his arguments with groups defending the family that they need to get with the modernist program.

Is this not stunningly similar to the “lost votes” scandal of Vatican II, when a progressive apparatchik deliberately misplaced the requests of many more orthodox council fathers regarding concerns over the document that became Dignitatis Humanae?  Several hundred interventions were made, but then claimed to be lost, later found, after the deadline for submittal had expired?  Am I remembering that right?

Is this not the kind of thing that occurs more when you have a predetermined outcome you’re trying to arrive at, rather than during “open and honest” discussion?  And is it not strongly indicative that maybe many Synod members, even, are not terribly well formed in the Faith, that this book would be considered dangerous enough to block?

Amazing. Just amazing.

The manifest modernism of Cardinal Walter Kasper February 25, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Bible, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, Papa, scandals, secularism, self-serving, SOD, the struggle for the Church.
15 comments

Joe Sparks at the Catholic Household site has done a great service in reviewing a number of Cardinal Walter Kasper’s early works.  Never repudiated, excerpts from the works of the “Pope’s theologian” reveal a man steeped in leftist-modernist “higher criticism” and gravely detached from a Catholic understanding of Sacred Scripture and the Tradition that informs it.  In fact, he is at many points in direct contradiction to solemn points of Dogma, the import of which I don’t think I have to tell you.  And yet this is the man, more than any other, guiding the direction of the Church under Pope Francis, and especially the attack on the moral Doctrine of the Faith.

Some select quotes below, it is useful to read the whole article, which I encourage:

A number of miracle stories turn out in the light of form criticism to be projections of the experiences of Easter back into the earthly life of Jesus, or anticipatory representations of the exalted Christ. Among these epiphany stories we should probably include the stilling of the storm, the transfiguration, Jesus’ walking on the lake, the feeding of the four (or five) thousand and the miraculous draught of fishes. The clear purpose of the stories of the raising from the dead of Jairus’s daughter, the widow’s son at Naim and Lazarus is to present Jesus as Lord over life and death. It is the nature miracles which turn out to be secondary accretions to the original tradition.

“The result of all this is that we must describe many of the gospel miracle stories as legendary…….The probability is that we need not take the so-called ‘nature miracles’ as historical.

This is nothing more than straight-up modernism.  The very concept that Christ’s Life and miracles could be “theologically true,” or “true in a sense of faith,” but historically false, as if they never occurred, is a heresy condemned by Pope Saint Pius X in Pascendi Dominici Gregis.

Furthermore, it is highly convincing circumstantial proof of Arianism, meaning Kasper views the real living Jesus Christ as just a man, separate from God and the “Jesus Christ of faith.”  And yet we more traditional Catholics are the Pelagians now.

[Mark 16] begins with a definite improbability. The wish to anoint a dead body, which has already been put in its shroud in the tomb, three days later, is not given any explanation, such as being a custom of the time, and is unintelligible in the climatic conditions of Palestine. The fact that the women do not realize until they are already on the way that they would need help to roll back the stone and enter the tomb betrays a degree of thoughtlessness which is not easy to explain. We must assume therefore that we are faced not with historical details but with stylistic devices intended to attract the attention and raise excitement in the minds of those listening….

In addition to the repetition and amplification of the heresies noted above, Cardinal Kasper -mind, he has never publicly changed his stance on these writings – also reveals the sneering contempt of the modernist left for anyone but themselves.  Everyone else is dumb, everyone else is silly, everyone else needs wild eyed tales and imagined miracles to convince them of the reality of Jesus Christ as God Incarnate.  This especially applies to those of earlier historic periods, who are almost always presented by modernists as bumbling simpletons wowed by fantastic stories. But isn’t it odd how the modernist contradicts himself – while the early Church allegedly made up these fables to win converts, we are told by these same modernists that the earliest Mass was the purest, and thus we must emulate it in the Novus Ordo (even if many if not most all the claims regarding the conduct of the earliest Mass either do not apply to the Church today, or were complete fabrications).  Which is it….was the early Church closest to the Truth revealed by Jesus Christ or was it filled with lying fabulists who told tall tales in order to sway the slobbering, stupid ancient masses? We see here as evidenced in so many other areas the double dealing of the modernist-leftist academia. BTW, the historical evidence contradicts this view, Christianity appealed at least as much, if not more, to the well-educated and very sober, even cynical elites of the Roman Empire as much as it did to the “peasants” of the day.  I would argue that in many respects, the elites of that time were probably better educated that their contemporaries today.

The final quote does not concern Scripture.  It is quite long, so bear with me, but it is incredibly important.  By now it should be clear that Cardinal Kasper – how on earth such a man was even ordained, let alone made a prince of the Church, is only for God to know – is an intellectual heir and ally of the extreme end of the modernist-leftist cabal that dominated Vatican II, Hans Kung, Schillebeeckx, Cardinal Alfrings, and all the rest.  But in the below, he directly states that the Council did not achieve the full flowering of modernist dreams due to a reaction from “antimodernist” elements and thus remains an imperfect realization of the progressive left’s vision for the Church (which is becoming completely irrelevant episcopals).  Yes Cardinal Kasper is a modernist, yes he holds views that I cannot describe other than heresy, and yes he has a dog in the fight, but given that he is such a scion of the extreme progressive wing of the Church (if they can be called “of the Church), and given that he was so close to such major players, should not his description of the Council as being one oriented towards departure from the Church’s 2000 year belief and practice seriously?

An influential minority [of Council Fathers]…remained captive to the structure of neoscholasticism and defended the post-Tridentine tradition in a one-sided manner. [Gee……you mean they were Catholic?  And the progressives didn’t defend their novelties “in a one sided manner!?”] Pope John XXIII’s successor, Pope Paul VI—unjustly a too much forgotten pope—was in principle inclined toward the concerns of the majority but also sought (in accordance with the ancient conciliar tradition) to achieve, if at all possible, a united consensus on the passing of the council documents. He succeeded: all sixteen documents were passed almost unanimously. But that came at a cost. In many places, as in previous councils, there were found compromise formulations in which the position of the majority often stands directly side by side with the position of the minority with their concern for demarcation. [Well that latter half is just BS.  Certainly, there was division in early councils and theological formulations were not always as precise as they could be in the very early Church, but there were always as clear a definition of orthodoxy and error as humanly possible (in cooperation with Grace).  This is a self-serving and doubtful, at best, claim.  Later councils, in particular, were exceedingly clear in their formulations and condemnations, especially Trent]

So the council’s texts contain enormous conflict potential; they open the door for a selective reception in one or the other direction… So the question arises: In which direction does the compass of Vatican II point, and where is the church heading in this still young third millennium? Will it maintain the confident trust of John XXIII [hyper-montanism, exalting a pope over Dogma and Tradition.  the image presented of John XXIII as the scion of progressive dreams is highly doubtful, as well.]  and the renewal from the sources or take the path back to defensive antireform and antimodernist attitudes? That is the question facing post-conciliar reception. (Address at the University of Notre Dame, April 24, 2013)

So Cardinal Kasper plainly admits he is on the side of modernism, does he not?

How many serious figures from Vatican II, on both sides of the theological divide that has riven the Church, do we have to read before serious consideration can be given to the possibility that they may be right, and that Vatican II is, or was intended by the dominant faction to be, a radical rupture with the preceding Magisterium?  I am not the one to answer that question.  No blogger is.  I have my personal beliefs, but they count for nothing. However,  I agree with Bishop Athanasius Schneider, Msgr. Brunero Gherardini, and many others, that the time is very long since past for a critical examination of the documents of Vatican II in the light of Tradition, and their clear explication purely in that light.  Anyone with a brain can see a huge tension between a number of statements of Vatican II and the pre-conciliar Magisterium.  Just wrapping them in the warm blanket of denial and saying “continuity” over and over is not cutting it.  Those statements – and I have no idea how many there are – are a source of huge amounts of tension in the Church, and the obvious “restatement of doctine BUT some novelty” or vice versa formula of so many statements of Vatican II, which Kasper describes above (one thing he gets right) is an enormous temptation to abuse.

The way Vatican II is written, especially in its novel parts (which is the distinct minority), progressives and faithful Catholics can argue literally forever on their correct interpretation and implementation.  That was what it took to get the cherished “unanimity” in the conciliar votes (otherwise, a number of the documents would not have passed with the requisite majority). But the damage this see-saw formula of many conciliar statements is plain to see.  I do pray we may finally get a Pope firmly grounded in the traditional practice of the Faith to either pass over (which I don’t think is possible), or re-examine Vatican II on the basis of the Church’s perennial belief.

But I shan’t hold my breath.  “Serene theology,” and all that.

Sorry for such a long post!

An Lenten exegesis on death and acceptance of suffering by Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque February 25, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, Four Last Things, General Catholic, Glory, history, Interior Life, religious, Saints, sanctity, Tradition, Virtue.
3 comments

The following excerpt from the Life of Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque comes from a memoir she left shortly before her death.  The Saint knew her death was near.  She who had been the recipient of such incredible, almost unthinkable gifts from God in the form of repeated apparition, close conversation and spiritual guidance from God, especially Our Lord’s emphasis on devotion His Sacred Heart, was still very cognizant of her (very slight) sins and failings and the fact of facing a dread Judge.  I thought this exegesis very timely not only for Lent, but also to refute both protestant heresies and the mma2predominant error in the Church today, the idea that God is just a big ‘ol ball of fluff and that essentially all men are saved.  Saint Margaret Mary is having none of that, and I would ask readers that if a soul, a Saint, given such incalculable graces by God, should fear her judgment, with what trepidation should not we?  Of course, that very fear and the Saint’s deep understanding of the reality of God assured that the outcome of her judgment would be a most happy one.  May we be blessed to do the same:

On the first day of my retreat my chief care was to think whence could come to me this great longing for death, since it is not usual for criminals, such as I am before God, to be so easy about appearing before their judge, and a judge the sanctity of whose justice penetrates even to the marrow of the bones. How, then, my soul, canst thou feel so great joy at its approach?  Thou thinkest only of ending thy exile, and thou art enraptured at the idea of soon going forth from thy prison.  But, alas! take care that temporal joy, which perhaps proceeds only from the blindness of ignorance, plunge thee not into eternal sadness, and that from this mortal and perishable prison thou hqdefaultfallest not into those eternal dungeons where there will be no more room to hope.  [This mentality, once commonly held at least by deeply devout Catholics, is utterly foreign to almost all souls today, even those in the Church.  I suspect the vast majority of people today would, if they could, choose to remain in this life forever if such were possible.  They have no real desire to be with God.]

Let us, then, O my soul, leave this joy and these desires to die to holy and fervent souls for whom great rewards are prepared. [Think on just who is saying this.  What humility!] For us whose works leave us nothing but chastisements to hope for, if God is not St.-Mary-Alacoquemore good in our regard than just, let us think what will be our fate.  Canst thou, my soul, endure for all eternity the absence of Him whose presence fills thee with desires so ardent, and whose absence causes thee pains so cruel?

My God, how difficult it is for me to render this account! I feel it impossible to nerve myself up to it, and, in my impotence, I know not to whom to address myself unless to my Adorable Master.  I have remitted to Him all the points on which I shall be judged, namely, my rules, constitutions, and directory. [Of the Order of the Visitation]  It is on them I shall be justified or condemned.  After confiding to Him all my interests, I felt admirable peace under His feet, where He held me for a long time abyssed, as it were, in my own nothingness, and there expecting that He would judge me, a miserable criminal.

……..Put me in prison. I consent, provided it be in Thy Sacred Heart.  There keep me fast captive, bound by the chains of Thy love, until I shall have paid Thee all that I owe Thee; and as I shall never be able to do that, I shall never come forth from that prison.

————End Quote———-

Ours is truly a glorious Faith, filled with souls of indescribable piety and sanctity.

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Without Christianity, the West is powerless to defend itself against Islam February 25, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, disaster, Ecumenism, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Holy suffering, horror, persecution, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sickness, Society, the struggle for the Church.
4 comments

Mark Steyn has an article about the incredible duplicity of the Obama administration in its approach to worldwide muslim extremism and acts of barbarity, which they blithely call “violent extremism.”  To Mr. Steyn, this moral cowardice is simply indicative of a much broader cultural trend (I agree), in which post-Christian elites lack the moral conviction to stand against this existential threat.  While he doesn’t make the point explicitly, my firm belief is that without Christianity (re: Catholicism), the former Christendom will be defenseless against an increasingly militant (and ignorant) islam.

This article contains some material from a letter Mark Steyn received from a reader, asking how other religions might react if they saw Western culture cowering before their demands and making all kinds of special provisions for them.  There is no reason, at present, for muslims to stop making demands and stop their campaign of violent conquest, so long as the West’s leaders behave as neutered ninnies more beholden to cultural marxism than they are to defending their own people and the work of millenia they inherited.  What I found most interesting in the letter was the litany of accommodations already made to islam, and the portents for the future:

  • No shopping laws on muslim holy days are being introduced in some European regions
  • Public schools allow the offering of muslim prayers but not Christian
  • Offensive comments about the “prophet” are condemned, even excoriated
  • Other religions are persecuted or driven from the public life as islam is extolled as part of “the fabric of the nation.”
  • Cultural leaders, including academia, media, politicians, etc., are driving to support insitution of islamic customs in the culture while Christian customs are often summarily blocked from public practice
  • Muslims should be allowed to offer prayer to allah during citizenship ceremonies, when other religions are not permitted to do so
  • Sharia is being de facto enforced in increasing swaths of Europe, including much of England, including requirements for women to wear the hijab and generally cover themselves from head to foot
  • There are rampant cases of muslim child rape that go on with government compliance and rarely any criminal charges.  Grooming of young non-muslim girls to be targets of male muslim lust are increasing rapidly.
  • Governments constantly apologize to their muslim citizens for attacking radical muslim sects in the Mideast and other locales
  • Governments (like our own) seem far more concerned about muslims being victims of some kind of prejudice than they are about the attacks muslims perpetrate

That’s only a very partial list.  In fact, even that partial list reveals that the sway Catholicism held for centuries in terms of being recognized as the One True Faith and being deserving of special treatment is now being accorded islam.

More and more, islam is becoming the de facto official religion of the West, or at least, that which receives deference and approbation from its political and cultural elites.  Meanwhile, belief in Christianity is basically non-existent in most of Europe, and is often weak and ineffectual even in the Western Hemisphere, at least as regards understanding religion as being the sole moral force capable of motivating the decaying remains of Christendom to stand in opposition to the muslim threat.  This fact is simply never discussed.  Liberalism is a belief set, and becomes a false religion in many (especially on the left, but also on the “right”), but it is not a sufficient grounds to resist the kind of moral firepower religious belief – no matter how erroneous – can inspire. That is the prime reason behind why tens of thousands of youth, even non-muslims, have flocked to Iraq and Syria to fight for ISIS.  They see in islam, more than in the weak, limp-wristed Christianity to which most have been exposed (if they have been exposed at all), something real and cohesive to believe in.  Liberalism is, at root, the exaltation of the self, but God did not create us to be endlessly selfish creatures, and the natural law written on our hearts causes many, probably even most souls awash in sexular pagan materialism to feel empty and devoid of meaning.  A muscular islam offers these disaffected souls what they are looking for, which is an answer for their longing for something larger than themselves, faith in god (however deformed), and something more than just acquiring more and more things.

But islam is especially well disposed to be attractive to materialist Westerners.  Islam is a far more materialist religion than Christianity (especially Orthodoxy or Catholicism), and promises the kinds of earthly rewards (virgins, feasts, cold, clear fountains of water, etc) that appeal to people lost in a materialist mindset.

What doesn’t appeal to many people (especially young men of fighting age) is the watered down, worldly, very nearly equally materialist, and feminized version of Christianity to which most Westerners have been exposed.  And in this sense, the revolution that has afflicted the Church in the past several decades plays a huge part in seeing souls walk away from a Catholic Christianity that does not move them, and seek something more “real” to them in libertine or muslim materialism.  It is absolutely incredible, but at the same time perfectly true, that millions of Catholics have walked away from the bland, unfulfilling post-conciliar practice of the Faith for something as empty as atheistic materialism or as deranged as islam. Certainly, the adoption of the latter is in its nascent stages and many other Catholics do seek out a more meaningful practice of Christianity in the evangelical sects (and, it must be said, from the point of view of horribly catechized former Catholics, the more robust evangelical-type sects are more meaningful in their practice of Christianity than most “large, suburban parishes” they have experienced), but to one who knows what the Church is, and what She alone can provide, seeing any souls fall away is simply incredible. And yet the badly disordered if not outright faulty practice of the Faith over the past several decades has led to tens, if not hundreds, of millions doing just that.

The Church, and the West, will not be able to stand against islam long-term until traditional Catholicism is once again the predominant practice of the Faith.  I am not overly optimistic at the prospects of this at present, and am much less optimistic than I was a little over two years ago.  This modernist resurgence ongoing since March 2013 is only going to delay the absolutely vital return to traditional Catholicism for more long years, if not decades.  And the Church increasingly faces grave threats from militant sexular paganism, so the future does not seem to bold well for us, in a worldly sense.  God is obviously displeased (gee…..I can’t imagine why, what with child sacrifice in the billions, exaltation of the grossest perversion, materialism and lust for power run amok, etc), and His Church is going to be made to suffer for a good, long while.  I am skeptical anything resembling the pre-conciliar Church on a mass basis will return in my lifetime, and so we can continue to expect islam to continue its long advance into the historic Christian areas.  I would say there is at least a 1 in 3 chance that even Rome may be, if not conquered, subsumed in a majority muslim population.  It will probably take a century or more, from now, to recover from the great modernist revolution of the mid-20th century.

I really don’t think I can stress enough the absolutely vital need for prayer in circumstances such as these.  Without a very strong prayer life, we shall not stand the storms that will buffet the Church for the rest of our lives.  One key area for prayer, is to pray that the blood of the many Catholic martyrs in the Mideast, Nigeria, and elsewhere will lead to this great flowering, this great restoration the Church so desperately needs.  We have great experience that the blood of martyrs will water the Vine of Christ and make it grow and bloom anew.  There have been so many martyrs……may their sacrifice redound to God’s glory!

And, I know much of the above is obvious to many long-time readers, but there are always new ones, some folks are just starting to figure this out, etc.

 

 

Awesome video: St. Pio of Pietrelcina offering Mass, 5 May 1956 February 25, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, Latin Mass, Liturgy, manhood, mortification, priests, religious, sanctity, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
2 comments

In Italian and Latin, and really gratifying to see –  Padre Pio offering the TLM on Saturday 5 May 1956, Feast of St. Pius X?

The only bad part is the obvious and poorly done overdubbing. At the very beginning, I believe we are hearing Padre Pio, but then the overdub begins and carries on most of the time.  Still…….we get to see Padre Pio consecrating the Most Blessed Sacrament, and in living color!  Very nice.  Many thanks to Video Sancto for posting this.

Greatness.

Another cool video – from ~2:45 – 5:00 see Padre Pio offering his very last public Mass.  The video notes he received an indult to offer the Mass in Latin and check out all the chapel veils on the women assisting at the Mass.  However, it is sad to see Padre Pio collapse after the Pater Noster.  His stigmata had miraculously healed by that point.

 

I assume you know……it’s Ember Week! February 25, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Domestic Church, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, Lent, Liturgical Year, sanctity, Tradition, Virtue.
5 comments

Sorry I didn’t give a reminder yesterday.  I had actually forgotten, thankfully, Dom Prosper Gueranger reminded me.

Just a quick reminder – Ember Days are special days of fasting and abstinence.  Wednesday and Saturday are days of fast and partial abstinence, Friday is a day of partial fast and total abstinence. By partial abstinence, you can have one full meal with meat and two snacks/small meals that don’t equal a full meal without.  So, I guess I’ll have to forego my usual foray to The Big Texan for a nice 64 oz sirloin for lunch with leftovers for dinner.  Oh, the pain, the pain of it all!

I pray we all take full advantage of the great Grace penitential seasons like Ember Week provide!  Such a shame they have been excised from virtually all non-traditional corners of the Church.

Much more info on Lenten Embertide if you are interested at Fisheaters.

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