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God is the God of infinite Mercy, but also infinite Justice July 10, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, error, Four Last Things, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, sanctity, Tradition, Virtue.
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From Divine Intimacy day 237, Infinite Justice.  This is a vital reminder today, when the massive error of the “fundamental option,” or universal salvation, is so rampant.  Suffice it to say, Scripture and Tradition both crush this pernicious error. No matter how “nice” it feel to pretend that all are saved, both our Blessed Lord made plain directly in His inpired and inerrant Word, but also 2,000 years of Tradition via Saints, mystics, and theologians, have all constantly warned us: many go to hell.  “It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” (Heb 9:31)The Heart of Jesus give us a torrent of grace_  Turgis

Mercy is the effusion of the sovereign Good who communicates His goodness to creatures; justice is zeal for defending the rights of that sovereign Good who ought to be loved above all things. In this sense, justice inervenes when the creatures tramples on God’s rights and offends Him instead of loving and honoring Him. The punishment of the sinner is the fruit of justice, but at the same time it is the fruit of mercy, for “whom the Lord loveth, he chastiseth” (Prov 3:12). God does not punish a sinner in order to destroy him but to convert him. [* see below] In this life the means used by Divine Justice are always directed by mercy, insofare as their purpose is always to put the sinner in such conditions as to profit by the Divine Mercy. Therefore, God is always merciful even when He punishes; His chastisements are not merely punishments, but they are also, and above all, remedies to cure our souls from sin, except in the case of those who refuse to be converted.

Hieronymus_Bosch,_The_Last_JudgmentIn our spiritual life, mercy and justice are continually alternating and intertwining. God’s mercy offers us His divine friendship; but, in justice, He cannot receive as an intimate friend anyone who retains the slightest attachment to sin and imperfection[Although the suffering will be unimaginable, thank God for Purgatory!] Therefore He subjects us to purifying trials for a twofold purpose: to make us atone for our faults – which is the aim of justice – and to destroy in us the last roots of sin that we may be disposed for union with God – and this is the aim of mercy. Hence, we must accept our trials humbly, realizing that we deserve them. We must accept them with zeal and a love of justice, wishing to avenge in ourselves God’s rights, rights which we too often forget and ignore. We ought to accept them too with love, for every trial is a great mercy on the part of God, who wants to make us advance in the way of sanctity.

From St. Bernard of Clairvaux: “What will become of me who have so many faults with which to reproach myself? But where sin abounds, Grace also abounds. And as Your mercy, O God, is eternal, I shall sing Your goodness forever, Your goodness, Your justice, not mine. I have only yhours because gesu e maria 2009 xiiYou are my justice. Should I fear that it will not be enough for both of us? but Your justice is infinite and remains forever and it will cover both of us with its immensity. In me it will cover the multitude of my sins, while in You, O Lord, it will only conceal the treasures of Your goodness which await me in the wounds of Christ. heere I shall find Your infinite sweetness, hidden, it is true, and only for those who are willing to surrender themselves.”

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*Thus, just as Catholics seek to stop horrors like state recognition of so-called homosexual marriage out of love both for those lost in sins of depravity, and for the harm we know, via the Church, it will inflict on millions of other souls and the culture at large, so God frequently causes us to endure sufferings and trials in order to bring us out of our sins. Leaving behind a sin one has become attached to is always very difficult.Whether that sin be greed, lust, gluttony, wrath, or whatever, it is always profoundly difficult to turn away from a long habit of sin, and even moreso in today’s corrupt world, which constantly presents sin as something “good.”  But God desires our salvation!  If we let Him, if we cooperate with His Grace, He can free us from our sins! But the vehicle of that freedom is mortification, and mortification means suffering, suffering which can only be embraced if we also embrace humility!  Humility leads to mortification which leads to Grace which leads to sanctification – that is God’s process of healing.  Will we cooperate with it?

That is one of the great graces of living in this time of persecution and hatred for the Church – there are and will be many opportunities to very much mortifiy ourselves on earth!  Pray to have the strength and humility to whether the storm!  Trust in God, and He WILL bring you to Himself in Heaven!


Incredibly moving testimony from a man who “dragged” his girlfriend to abortion mill July 10, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, Basics, contraception, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Holy suffering, Interior Life, manhood, sexual depravity, shocking, Society, true leadership, Virtue.
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Wow.  Thank you David Rosa for your testimony.  Boy, I can relate about that fallen life, I get the pain, although I didn’t drag anyone to an abortion mill, thank God.  But that was only God’s fortune smiling on me, completely without merit. It’s not because I was wonderful or anything, far from it.

Sorry for the low video quality:

I like how he describes himself as an orthodox Catholic, but I think we really need to just call ourselves Catholics, while noting that most who call themselves such, are not.  They’re not even close, most of the time.  Which is sad and tragic, but very true. Nancy Pelosi is not a Catholic. John Kerry is not a Catholic. Joe Biden is not a Catholic.  Even many who wear a collar are not Catholic.  Catholics are those who accept and practice, to the best of their ability, that which Christ has revealed through His Church. We all sin. We all fall far short of the example Christ gave us.  But those who intentionally reject the Truth Christ has revealed, who say I KNOW BETTER or I WILL NOT SERVE, are no longer Catholic. It’s the difference between feeling guilty for a sin of failing, confessing it, and striving to amend your life, and saying “The Church is wrong. X(contraception/abortion/porn/adultery/missing Mass/etc) is not a sin.”

Perhaps they can be called fallen away Catholics.  There are certainly enough of those nowadays.

What moving testimony, and what bravery to publicly share it. That takes a sort of superhuman bravery, that only comes from Grace. How edifying to see a conversion in action like that.  Brav-o!  God bless him!

Fr. Rodriguez on the benefits of the Traditional Mass July 10, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, episcopate, General Catholic, Latin Mass, manhood, priests, sanctity, secularism, Spiritual Warfare, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
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Fr. Michael Rodriguez gave a conference at St. Catherine of Siena parish in California recently.  The talk focused on his own journey as a priest, from just a regular old diocesan priest who had never heard a Mass in Latin, to now a full-time TLM priest who only offers the Sacraments according to the traditional Rite, and who has been persecuted clean out of El Paso for it.  More broadly, it also focused on the great benefits of the Traditional Latin Mass, which I thought fit in nicely with the discussion going on in the comments section here.  Some excerpts from the synopsis of Father’s talk, along with some pics from this great blog run by a traditional priest commenter ‘D’ just made me aware of (I add emphasis):IMG_9644 (1)

When you go to the Novus Ordo mass, it can be a very human experience.  When you go to the Latin Mass it is very divine.  He explained it this way.  At baptism you see visible human things, the priest, the baby, and the water.  We hear the words, I baptize you in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.  But they are not what is important.  What is important is the invisible supernatural action of God.  Through the priest, God kicks the devil out by the exorcisms, the baby is cleansed from original sin and the Trinity comes into the soul.  That is when we become children of God.  But it takes faith to believe in the unseen action of God’s graces.  

In the Novus Ordo Mass, there is divine action taking place, but what is emphasized is the music, the readings, the table/altar, the priest and the active participation of the people.  This focus does not need faith.  It takes faith to enter into the mystery of the Sacrifice of Jesus on Calvary at the mass. [These are subtle points, but hugely important. I think many of us who have assisted at both the Novus Ordo, even in Latin, even very reverently offered, and the TLM, have felt that difference, that certain indefinable quality that makes one really, really respond spiritually at the TLM. I think Fr. Rodriguez is ‘splainin’ what that phenomenon is to us, here]

IMG_9638In the Tridentine Mass, the only reason for music is to take the soul to heaven, not to have a nice experience.  The long silence and kneeling forces you to have to go beyond the visible to the invisible.  The priest has what looks like his back to the people (he is actually facing God the Father to whom he is offering his prayer) and is in Persona Christi.  The priest is not important.  The real invisible action and presence of Jesus through the priest is what is important.  Many times Jesus has appeared in his passion at the Holy Tridentine Mass.  This is where the invisible becomes visible through a miracle.

Then when you approach the altar for Holy Communion and kneel in prayer, you are approaching God and the Holy of Holies (the sanctuary surrounded by the altar rail).  This is, through faith, approaching heaven.  It only looks like a wafer, it only looks like wine, but through faith we enter into the supernatural reality of receiving Jesus’ Body and Blood. (Jesus’ Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity is all contained in the Holy Host).  But to enter into this mystery, you need to have faith.

When you enter into the invisible divine mystery of faith at the Holy Latin Mass, it changes you.  You go home trying to be a better father, mother, child, and person.  You let the supernatural graces you received change your life.  You work on discipline and love.

In the Novus Ordo mass, the emphasis on human elements, can keep us from entering through faith into the divine mystery.  We go for the music, the priest, the word of God, the preaching and the friends.  I know many go for more reasons than this, but it does not take that much faith to have a good human experience rather than entering into the divine mystery.  The danger here is that you go to mass, but never change.  You are always the same.  Ask people if after you have gone to so many Novus Ordo masses, have you really changed for the better?  Ask them if you are becoming more grouchy or more loving.

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There is variability in everything.  Some Novus Ordo Masses are clearly more reverent, more spiritual, and which point more directly toward the Transcendent, the Eternal. They are more efficacious of Grace, and more uplifting to souls. And some TLMs are better than others.  But overall, my experience has been that the TLM is much, much better at putting me (and many others) in a sacred place, a transformative place, with respect to God.

I think, I hope, that I can also answer the question that I have changed for the better with the TLM.  I think it’s a very good question – if you’ve been faithfully attending Novus Ordo Masses every week, and you are no different than you were years ago, is it perhaps time to ask why?

On a related note, a little birdy told me that Bishop Seitz was taking his first diocesan tour to Santa Teresa parish in Presidio.  That development is pregnant with possibilities. Pray for Fr. Rodriguez!  And pray for Bishop Seitz!

Some very interesting thoughts on the canonizations of JPII and John XXIII July 10, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, episcopate, error, General Catholic, Papa, Saints, sanctity, scandals, Tradition, Virtue.
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Boniface at Unam Sanctam Catholicam doesn’t post a lot, but when he does, it’s almost always gold.  He has a habit of bringing up points that almost all others miss, including yours truly.  He has a post up regarding the upcoming canonizations of Blessed John Paul II and John XXIII. I know I have some readers who have been…….perplexed?……..that I would express any question or register any concern regarding these canonizations. And I know there are people who have also just gone off the rails angry about them, including some folks claiming their going into sede vacantist land due to this move. Pope_John_Paul_II_and_the_Eucharist

Leaving all that aside, Boniface brings up a hugely important point for consideration.  Every reputable source I have found is in agreement that the Church’s claim of canonization is an infallible one. If the Church says a given person is a Saint, all Catholics are required to believe that person is in Heaven. That is not up for debate in this post. What is up for debate is the meaning of canonization, because canonization has a dual meaning, one aspect of which has tended to be almost totally forgotten in all the commentary on JPII and John XXIII.  Yes, canonization is a statement that a soul is in Heaven, but as Boniface notes below, it is also a statement that the soul in question evidenced heroic virtue in the conduct of their apost0late/office and is worthy of emulation in that office. And it is that point which I think deserves some serious thought by all Catholics.

First, Boniface notes some of the concerns with Blessed John Paul II (quoted words in italics, I add emphasis and comments):

I do not intend to spend a lot of time going over the reasons why I personally believe the canonization of John Paul II is imprudent, but it is necessary 111_JPII_Shaman01to mention them in passing to put some context to what I will say here. The Assisi meetings were scandalous and confusing to the faithful; I don’t care how you try to explain it away, they simply were. The kissing of the Koran and referring to it as the word of God, praying with animists in Togo, allowing pagan Aztec priestsesses to bless him, and all such activities were equally scandalous, inexcusable and unprecedented in papal history. What about asking St. John the Baptist to protect Islam? How about the disintegration of Catholic life across every category and rampant dissent throughout the Church with almost nothing done to stop it. Priest sex abuse scandals covered up or left unaddressed. Administrative chaos. The list could go on. Maybe John Paul II was not personally responsible for all of these things; I am not suggesting the degree of personal culpability attributable to the late pontiff. But, they happened on his watch and so they are laid at his doorstep. For these reasons and others, I do not believe it is a good idea to canonize this man.

Here’s where people chime in and say, “C’mon! Saints aren’t perfect! Sure, the man had flaws. Every saint has flaws. You are being too critical.”Pope John Paul II Kissing Koran

Saints aren’t perfect. I agree. Saints are not perfect. But we are falling prey to a subtle bait and switch if we accept the rationale that “saints aren’t perfect” therefore it is appropriate to canonize someone with so much questionable baggage……

But here is the distinction: It is one thing to say a saint has flaws; it is another thing to say he did something fundamentally harmful to the faith or contradictory to the nature of his office. We see St. Francis, with the zeal of a new convert, going beyond the boundaries of prudence and giving away his father’s silks without permission. We can understand this. We sympathize. We, too, know the experience of being too overzealous about something and inadvertently hurting someone else because of it. This is not a real strike against Francis’ papa-john-paul-ii--1098sanctity. It just demonstrates his human side.

We must remember, when we canonize a person who holds an office, we are also approving the manner in which he administered that office. One of the biggest misunderstandings modern Catholics have about canonization is that it is simply a declaration that someone is in heaven. I’m so sick of hearing that! “What’s the big deal? All it means is that he’s in heaven.” If that were all it was, then we could canonize a death-row murderer who maintained his impenitence until a moment before death when he suddenly decides to accept baptism one minute prior to execution. After all, he’s in heaven! Clearly this is too simplistic.

Whenever we canonize someone, we are not just affirming they are in heaven, but we are affirming that they have done deeds that are worthy of emulation. Furthermore, tf this person holds an office, like a bishop, priest, pope, or king, then we are also affirming that what they did in that office is worthy of emulation – that they were not just a holy man or woman, but an ideal abbot, abbess, king, queen or whatever. Has it ever been otherwise? Do you know of any saint-kings who were personally holy pope john thronebut terrible kings? How about sainted bishops who were personally holy but made awful bishops? How about sainted popes who were personally holy but the Church went down the toilet under their administration?……. [Some may rebutt with the classic example of St. Peter, reminding how he ran away and denied Christ. First, that occurred before he received the Holy Spirit, before the Resurrection and Ascension.  Secondly, this was a failing, something Peter deeply regretted and publicly apologized for, not something he held up as good and normal. If you bring up St. Paul rebuking St. Peter over refusing to eat with gentiles when in the presence of Jews, which was after Pentecost, once again, this was a failing, and something Peter ceased doing after being called to account. It was a mistake, the kind of mistake all Saints make, not a deliberate and repeated action like the two Assisi gatherings or the repeated acts of scandal regarding receiving “blessings” or other symbols of supporting/recognizing other faiths, even faiths so twisted as voodoo and animism]

To canonize an office holder is to canonize the manner in which they held the office. St. Gregory the Great is a saint not just because he was personally holy but because he was a model pope, St. Charles Borromeo because he was a model bishop, St. john xxiii consecration in romeFrancis because he was a model mendicant, St. Thomas because he was a model teacher and theologian. Nothing is more contrary to the tradition of the Church and the meaning implicit in canonizations than to draw a distinction between someone’s personal holiness and the manner in which they fulfilled their vocation. The two are united. In fact, one’s personal holiness is directly contingent upon how one fulfills one’s vocation. One cannot become a sainted bishop while simultaneously having failed in the most fundamental aspects of an episcopal vocation.  [I can’t think of any.  St. Anthony Marie Claret was personally incredibly holy, but he was also an amazingly faithful bishop and willing to suffer tremendously for the good of the souls in his charge. There were Saints who were misunderstood and persecuted in their times, but I cannot think of any who actually gave great scandal at some point.  But I could be misremembering.  I will say that the removal of the office of “devil’s advocate” from the canonization process has made it very possible to gloss over actions which are scandalous or otherwise detrimental to the cause in consideration, and I think that office very badly needs to be restored. Pope John Paul II is the one who removed that office]
I have been giving extreme examples, and I am certainly not saying John Paul II was a fundamental failure as a pope. I have no qualms, however, about saying that John Paul II was not an ideal pope, much less is he worthy he being called “the Great.”  [I am afraid I have to agree, even though I know my doing so may turn a good number of readers off.  Both Popes will be canonized, it seems, and I will accept that they are in Heaven. And I pray Blessed John Paul II had good, holy reasons for many of his actions which are so difficult to understand in relation to the constant practice of the Faith, and which would have scandalized his predecessors tremendously. But I cannot say that I don’t see grave problems in all this ]  The reasons for me saying this are those common to most traditionalists, and I will not argue each point here. But the important thing is to realize that to canonize John Paul II is to canonize his scandals. The faithful will have no way to distinguish between the praiseworthy and the scandalous in his pontificate, especially since those pushing the cause of John Paul II have never offered an official explanation for these scandals……

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I thank Boniface for the most thought-provoking post.  Even though I flesh out some of the arguments made above, I am still churning on all this, mentally.  This is one of those hot-button topics that tends to elicit very strong reactions – some may be scandalized by my posting this, and I regret if that is the case. But I think these are very important points that need to be considered, and I have not seen them as well fleshed out anywhere else.  None of the above means that I won’t have joy in my heart that two more souls have been added to the constellation of Saints, but I would not be completely honest if I did nto say that I worry what kind of precedent is being set, or if any motives aside from the edification of souls may be driving these canonizations.

Your thoughts are most appreciated.

Texas abortion bill continues to advance, pro-aborts shout “F— the Church” July 10, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, Basics, contraception, Dallas Diocese, disaster, error, foolishness, General Catholic, persecution, secularism, self-serving, sexual depravity, shocking, sickness, Society, Spiritual Warfare.
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I guess the special sessions in the legislature are considered self-contained units, where activity in one session cannot be carried over into another one?  Or else, why would the House be voting again to pass the same bill, when they already passed it in the previous special session?

Please don’t let them frak this.

LifeNews is reporting that pro-lifers far outnumber pro-aborts in Austin, in spite all the groovy benefits being doled out by Planned Barrenhood, like being paid to be there, free food, and hanging around chicks with shaved heads and unshaved legs.

I pray the superior number of those supporting the bill’s passage continues. If you are passing through Austin, live nearby, or have a way to take a day off and go down there, I pray you consider doing so.  These demonstrations of support, or opposition, do have an influence. Not a great one, but they are important.

One thing is for certain in this debate, the pro-aborts are making it more and more obvious their league with satan is far form incidental:

The pro-abortion madness is continuing for yet another week. On the heels of death threats from an abortion activist to the Lt. Governor comes another outrage.

As members of the Texas legislature attempt to debate a bill that would ban late-term abortions after 20 weeks, abortion activists are shouting.

The typical pro-abortion chant goes something like this: “Women must decide their fate, not the church, not the state.” Bryan Kemper of Stand True relayed to LifeNews reports from his staff at the scene and says many of the dozens of abortion advocates screaming tonight in the Texas capitol are replacing “not the church” with “f— the church.”

I’m not surprised.  They hate us.  Many hate God. Is there much difference betwee F the Church and hail satan? It’s all the same sad lie humans have bought for 2-5000 years: non serviam. I will not serve You, I will serve my groin, or my money, or my drugs, or my politics, or my class, or whatever.

“You cannot serve God and Mammon.”

I just lurve how leftists always have to use their silly little rhyming chants, to keep everyone on message. It’s so centralized and revealing  – there is always a leader with a bullhorn, always a few assistants with flyers/handouts with “the message” (all paid for by YOU, via Planned Barrenhood!), because the leaders don’t trust their supporters to be intelligent enough to stay on message, and fear what would happen if their supporters were to engage in one-on-ones with pro-lifers (a good chuck of support would fall away).  So, they keep them corralled (literally, I have seen this, they direct the people where to go  like cattle), carefully scripted, always engaged in some chant or other mindless repetition, and always under their careful control.

It is, in microcosm, a perfect exemplar of leftism, and the vision they have for our society.  A few well connected activist leaders directing the actions of many, many others.  In other words, apparatchiks.

Sound familiar?


These guys also loved to eff the Church.

Golly, I can’t recommend enough that everyone read Solzhenitsyn!

Prayer is our most important weapon in all these battles!  Pray for the conversion of souls, pray for our Church to treat contraception and the depravity it engenders as the root of all this cultural collapse, which it is!  And of course pray for the end of abortion, every day!