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St. Francis was not a new age hippie, part deux October 22, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, error, Eucharist, General Catholic, Glory, Interior Life, religious, Saints, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
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From St. Francis’ “Admonitions,” and The Treasury of Catholic Wisdom.  I add some emphasis.

Sacred Scripture tells us that the Father dwells in light inaccessible (1 Tim 6:16) and that God is Spirit (Jn 4:24), and St. John adds, “No one at any time has seen God” (Jn 1:18).  Because God is a spirit He can be seen only in spirit; It is the spirit that gives life; the flesh profits nothing (Jn 6:64). But God the Son is equal to the Father and so He too can be seen only in the same way as the Father and the Holy Spirit. That is why all those were condemned who saw our Lord Jesus Christ in His humanity but did not see or believe in spirit His Divinity, that He was the true Son of God. In the same way now, all those are damned who see the Sacrament of the Body of Christ which is consecrated on the altar in the form of bread and wine by the words of our Lord in the hands of the priest, and do not see or believe in spirit and in God that this is really the most holy Body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is the Most High Himself who has told us, This is my Body and Blood of the New Covenant (Mk 14:22-24), and, he who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has life everlasting (Jn 6:55).

And so it is really the Spirit of God who dwells in his faithful who receive the most holy Body and Blood of our Lord. Anyone who does not have this Spirit and presumes to receive him eats and drinks judgment to himself (1 Cor 11:29). And so we may ask in the words of Scripture, Men of rank, how long will you be dull of heart? (Ps 4:3)  Why do you refuse to recognize the truth and believe in the Son of God? (Jn 9:35)

Some other bits of wisdom:

We can be sure that a man is a true religious and has the spirit of God if his lower nature does not give way to pride when God accomplishes some good through him, and if he seems all the more worthless and inferior to others in his own eyes. Our lower nature is opposed to every good. [a stunning rebuke to the new age re-crafting of St. Francis as a sort of secular, humanist hero, St. Francis, like all the Saints, knew that our natures were so corrupted that we were totally dependent on Grace to do any good.  Enough of this “help” garbage, we are in constant need of Grace to accomplish any supernatural good, and most natural goods, too.]

Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven (Matt 5:39). There are many people who spend all their time at t heir prayers and other religious exercises and mortify themselves by long fasts and so on. But if anyone says as much as a world that implies a reflection on their self-esteem or takes something away from them, they are immediately up in arms and annoyed. These people are not really poor in spirit. A person is really poor in spirit when he hates himself and loves those who strike him in the face. [Again, what a contradiction to the modern image of St. Francis!]


No matter what happens, Texas won’t be funding Planned Parenthood October 22, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, awesomeness, contraception, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, sadness, sickness, Society, unadulterated evil.
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I’ve covered the State of Texas’ efforts to totally de-fund Planned Parenthood with relation to the “Women’s Health Program.”   The state de-funded the program, then Obama sued to make the state reinstate the funds.  They went to court, along with Planned Parenthood, to reinstate the funding.  Now the state says they will shut the program down, rather than fund Planned Parenthood.  Yay!  And a lower court has already ruled in the state’s favor.  It looks like Planned Parenthood will have to drum up $40 million worth of fake mammograms and contraception handouts elsewhere:

“If they prevail in that case, and the courts say, ‘You have to include Planned Parenthood,’ then, yes, (the program) goes away,” Texas Health and Human Services Executive Commissioner Dr. Kyle Janek said.

The health program is part and parcel of the Republican-dominated state government and the Democratic administration of President Barack Obama. Several other states have also tried to cut off funding for Planned Parenthood.

The federal government, which pays for 90 percent of the $39-million-a-year program, says it will not renew the funding because Texas decided to enforce a years-old law that had barred funding for abortion providers and affiliates.

Texas is creating its own program for 115,000 low-income women using state funds, set to begin November 1.

While state officials had previously said the program would not continue if Planned Parenthood participated, the rules unveiled by Janek on Thursday for the state-funded program has made the ban official.

This is not a massive victory.  A massive victory would be if the state stopped funding contraception altogether. But de-funding Planned Barrenhood is, at least, a tactical victory, an injury to a diabolical organization which is the strongest proponent of abortion and contraception in our country.

I hope the state government remains strong in this fight.

Reminders – Latin Mass tonight and Novena October 22, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, Holy suffering, Interior Life, Novenas, Saints, Tradition, Virtue.
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There will be Novus Ordo Latin Mass tonight at St. Mark in Plano at 7pm.

Also, you can start your All Saints Novena today.  You could pray the Litany of the Saints, found here, or this Novena which is really beautiful and oriented towards the souls in Purgatory.

Prayer to Our Suffering Savior for the Holy Souls in Purgatory

O most sweet Jesus, through the bloody sweat which Thou didst suffer in the Garden of Gethsemane, have mercy on these Blessed Souls. Have mercy on them.
R. Have mercy on them, O Lord.

O most sweet Jesus, through the pains which Thou didst suffer during Thy most cruel scourging, have mercy on them.
R. Have mercy on them, O Lord.

O most sweet Jesus, through the pains which Thou didst suffer in Thy most painful crowning with thorns, have mercy on them.
R. Have mercy on them, O Lord.

O most sweet Jesus, through the pains which Thou didst suffer in carrying Thy cross to Calvary, have mercy on them.
R. Have mercy on them, O Lord.

O most sweet Jesus, through the pains which Thou didst suffer during Thy most cruel Crucifixion, have mercy on them.
R. Have mercy on them, O Lord.

O most sweet Jesus, through the pains which Thou didst suffer in Thy most bitter agony on the Cross, have mercy on them.
R. Have mercy on them, O Lord.

O most sweet Jesus, through the immense pain which Thou didst suffer in breathing forth Thy Blessed Soul, have mercy on them.
R. Have mercy on them, O Lord.

(Recommend yourself to the Souls in Purgatory and mention your intentions here)

Blessed Souls, I have prayed for thee; I entreat thee, who are so dear to God, and who are secure of never losing Him, to pray for me a miserable sinner, who is in danger of being damned, and of losing God forever. Amen.

If using the above, make sure you go here for the daily prayer portion of the Novena!  Deo Gratias!

The “Eldest Daughter of the Church” has died…… October 22, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, demographics, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, horror, Latin Mass, priests, scandals, Society.
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…..of a self-inflicted gun-shot wound. Permit me some dramatic license, but that is just about the truth. Via Rorate Caeli, some statistics on the very near total collapse of the Faith in France.  These statistics were compiled by the publication La Croix, to celebrate mark lament? the 50th anniversary of the 2nd Vatican Council.  The results follow (I add emphasis and comments):

Baptized Catholics: [percentage of French who self-report as baptized Catholics]

92% in 1961
80% in 2012

Mass attendance:

(Note: what is translated here as ‘sometimes’ is to be understood as ‘sometimes in the course of the year’ – quelquefois dans l’année.)

Among all French, whether baptized Catholic or not:

1961: 35% every Sunday or more, 33% sometimes, 24% never, 8% non-baptized. [So, the Faith in France was already in dire trouble prior to Vatican II.  Comparable figures for the US were more like 65-75% every Sunday.  And the Bishops of France, along with Germany, Belgium, Holland, and Austria, led the ‘progressive’ wing that so dominated Vatican II]
2012: 6% every Sunday or more, 28% sometimes, 46% never, 20% non-baptized.

Among all baptized Catholics:

1961: 25% every Sunday, 13% “as often as possible”, 36% sometimes, 26% never
2012: 5% every Sunday, 2% “as often as possible”, 35% sometimes, 58% never [How can it be that the general population assists at Mass every Sunday more than “baptized Catholics?” Again, in all polls, especially on a religious subject, we have to take into account the people sometimes self-report “better” or expected behavior at higher rates than reality.  If you report as a Catholic, you may have a feeling you are “expected” to give a certain answer, like more frequent Mass attendance, than you actually do in reality.  That could have an effect here.  Other studies have shown that weekly Mass attendance in France is more like 2-3%, which corresponds roughly with the percentage of traditional-type Catholics!]

Regarding Mass attendance among baptized Catholics in 2012, by age group:

Age group 65 and above:

15% every Sunday, 4% “as often as possible”, 35% sometimes, 46% never

Age group 50 to 64:

3% every Sunday, 3% “as often as possible”, 38% sometimes, 56% never

Age group 35 to 49:

2% every Sunday, 1% “as often as possible”, 37% sometimes, 60% never

Age group 25 to 34:

1% every Sunday, 1% “as often as possible”, 33% sometimes, 65% never

Age group 18 to 24:

No figures (0%) for every Sunday, 2% “as often as possible”, 19% sometimes, 79% never

——————————-End Quote————————–

There are, then, no young people assisting at Mass, or simply a trifling number?  Essentially, save for a few elderly and the traditionalist groups, the Faith in dead in France.  Only a remnant remains.  Amazing, and absolutely not in a good way.

These countries that led the progressive wing of the last Council embraced the most radical view of the “reforms” with relish. You can see the fruit of this embrace here, the Faith is all but dead.  I have seen other data on vocations – very soon, it appears half of all ordinations in France will occur in the traditional orders, even though they only make up a couple percent of the Church at large.  How strange it will be, when the Church in France will consist of nothing but traditional groups, and a hierarchy almost totally, implacably hostile to them.

But you can see the direction in which things are heading.  The Church will re-emerge, eventually, and be tiny in comparison to that shadow of the Faith that remains today, but radically committed to the Faith and then there will have to be a setting about of re-evangelizing the culture.  This is sort of a replay of the dark ages, when, after the barbarian invasions, the Faith largely died in many parts of Europe, and then had to be spread again.  The longer this process of deconstruction takes, the harder that work will be.

How long, O Lord?


Pray for the suffering Christians in Lebanon – UPDATED! October 22, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, disaster, Ecumenism, General Catholic, Holy suffering, horror, persecution, sadness, sickness, Society.
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A local family I know barely escaped suffering terrible tragedy in the car bombing which took place last Friday in a predominately Christian section of Beirut, Lebanon.  The target was apparently Wissam al-Hassan, a leader in the intelligence branch of the Lebanese Security Forces.  He was, incidentally, a muslim.  But many innocent Christians were injured or killed, in this latest increase in sectarian/religious violence in Lebanon:

The bomb went off at 2:50 p.m. local time on Ibrahim Monzer Street near the Sassine Squarein the largelyGreek Orthodox ChristianAchrafieh district of Beirut.[6][3] The attack took place in a narrow street 100 meters from the offices of the Kataeb Party[The Kataeb Party is a conservative party closely associated with Maronite Catholics.] a member in the March 14 alliance and an outspoken critic of the Assad regime.[7] In turn, the headquarters of the March 14 alliance itself are 300 meters away from the blast site.[6]

According to preliminary examinations by the explosive experts of the Lebanese Army, the car had been rigged with explosives equivalent to 30 kilograms of TNT. The explosion, described as “massive”, left a large crevice in the road and tore off the balconies of nearby buildings.[2][6] The car in which the bomb is believed to have been delivered was reportedly split in two by the force of the explosion, which also sent debris hundreds of meters away.[8]

From what I have been told, the family so nearly affected had members who were in this spot just minutes before the blast went off.

It is disastrous that we will likely see much more of this as the radicalization of the Mideast continues apace, and Christians can expect to be increasingly persecuted, unless God intervene and bring this madness to an end.

If you would, in your charity, add the suffering Christians in the Mideast to your prayers, it would be a great spiritual work of mercy, although I suspect many of my readers have already done so.  It is events like this, that are increasingly making me less than enthusiastic about having a persecution cleanse the Church.  Sometimes, in such persecutions, souls and the Church at large emerge greatly strengthened and even purified from the devastation.  But it is an awful price to pay.

UPDATE: via culturewarnotes, the Christians of Syria are further along down this path: constant threat of violence, severe economic decline, and destroyed churches:

The Chaldean Catholic bishop of Aleppo, Syria’s largest city, told an audience at Parliament in London that the city is in “chaos.”

Christians “have fled their homes because of the threat of bombs, they have lost their livelihoods; schools, hospitals and other public services do not function,” said Bishop Antoine Audo, a Jesuit who has led his eparchy (Eastern-rite diocese) of 35,000 Chaldean Catholics since 1992.

“80% of people have no job and have no option but to stay at home,” he added. “Poverty is getting very serious, especially with rising prices and no salaries. The face of the city has changed. There is no security, everything is dirty, there are difficulties in basic travel, no taxis, no buses.”

“In the city of Homs, home to what was the country’s second-largest Christian community, all but a few of the faithful were forced to leave after a wave of persecution — all the churches desecrated,” he continued.