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Coup against Franciscans of the Immaculate because “crypto-Lefebvrian, always traditional” December 9, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in disaster, episcopate, error, General Catholic, Holy suffering, horror, Latin Mass, Liturgy, Papa, persecution, religious, scandals, secularism, self-serving, shocking, the return.
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Tancred at Eponymous Flower has posted some recent Italian articles dealing with the Franciscans of the Immaculate, including a response for the Vatican-installed apostolic commissioner, Fidenzio Volpi OFM Cap.  In Father Volpi’s own words, the FFIs leadership of the FFIs was sacked for being “crypto-Lefebvrian, always traditional.”  Even more details have been revealed about the moves against the order, which has included removal of almost all heads of seminaries, numerous priors, the entire top leadership of the order, and the more or less blanket refusal to allow the TLM or the prayer of the Breviary according to the traditional Liturgy.  The few progressive elements in the order have been given all the positions of influence.

In a word, a coup:

The progressive Vaticanist Mario Tosatti had published a few days ago in the daily newspaper La Stampa a letter from a member of the Third Order of the Franciscans of the Immaculate, in which the radical approach of the Commissioner has been criticized (see separate report “Unrestricted War” against the Franciscans of the Immaculate Conception? The -4Unspeakable “Blemish” ).  [You must read this link.  It details all the actions against the FFIs.  Very uncharitable actions, which seem totally counter to Pope Francis’ interest in being always loving and never dogmatic. Some of the former FFI leadership are essentially being held incommunicado under what amounts to house arrest.  Incredible.]  The interventions affect not only the male religious branch, but also the Third Order, which was completely paralyzed by Father Volpi.

The Apostolic Commissioner responded with a letter to Tosatti’s publication. In it, he explained for the first time the actual reason for the actions of the Vatican against the Order and its founder. The Franciscans of the Immaculate Conception is alleged to  have “drifted” in a “Crypto-Lefebvrian, anyways traditionalist” direction. Even Tosatti reads from the extensive letter, in addition to several minor matters, what  “the real problem” is.
media-52257-2The Commissioner stated thus confirming what was immediately clear to observers by the prohibition of the traditional rite and in the decree made by the Religious Congregation. The tough measures are directed against the rediscovery of the traditional rite and against the defense of the Church’s tradition. Commissioner Father Volpi does not distinguish between “Lefebvrian” and “traditionalist”, and thus, not even between the canonically unrecognized Priestly Society of St. Pius X and the canonically recognized Ecclesia Dei communities. Obviously, an attachment to tradition is for the Commissioner basically a “problem”. A direction that is not only displeasing to the Capuchin, but must be fought. And he has done so with great zeal since last August. Obviously, it was this aversion that qualified him for the task of the Apostolic Commissioner.  [Unfortunately, it would seem so.  My personal interaction with Capuchins, especially Capuchin monks, is that they are one of the most thoroughly anti-tradition orders in the Church.  They have persecuted with savage zeal one lone Capuchin I know who is attracted to the Church’s constant belief and practice and the glorious Mass.]
————–End Quote————–
I’m out of time for the day, but a couple of quick notes from the remainder of the article, which you should read.  The FFIs were growing explosively.  They were incredibly successful.  That attracted a great deal of anger and envy from dying orders filled with aging modernists.  Think how differently the FFIs are being dealt with than were the Legionairies of Christ, whose founder even some other senior leaders have been found to be out of control in morality and utter disgraces to the Church. cd044211408170eeb8c72472be5eda00 But there is no persecution there.  There has not been a single accusation, let alone proof, of impropriety by the FFIs or any of their leaders.  But they are being made to suffer severe treatment for doing exactly what Pope Benedict XVI encouraged them to do.
This Capuchin apostolic administrator now wants to devour the “reform” the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate, as well.  He has publicly complained recently of not being given authority over them, as well.
Truly frightening.  The FFIs are being persecuted not because of some alleged division within the order, but solely due to their bold adherence to Tradition and their immense success in attracting vocations – so says the man who is overseeing their “reform.”
If they can be treated in this manner, who else?
I thought the Church was all about dialogue and the primacy of the individual conscience?   Apparently, some are exempt!  It is only those who love and adhere to the constant belief and practice of the Faith that are below such enlightened treatment.

Could this be where the Synod on the Family is headed? December 9, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, disaster, episcopate, error, family, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, Sacraments, sadness, scandals, self-serving.
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Most readers will know that Pope Francis has scheduled a special episcopal Synod on the Family and married life next October.  Surveys of the world’s bishops are apparently underway to gather views for problems affecting family life and marriage in particular.  Some of these surveys have come to light.  Some of the survey questions seem to point in a certain direction, that of somehow changing how the Church views issues like whether the divorced and remarried (w/o annulment) can receive the Blessed Sacrament.  There has been a new Secretary General for this synod appointed.

Regarding that, this new Secretary General, Archbishop Lorenzo Baldisseri, made some comments recently on the subject of admitting the divorced and remarried (w/o annulment) to Communion.  Dr. Ed Peters, who normally strives to sing the corporate line, took exception to Baldisseri’s comments recently, via Bishop Rene Gracida.  What did Baldiserri say?  Well, among other things, this:

A new approach needs to be taken with respect to the administration of the sacraments to remarried divorcees. The Church needs to apply Church doctrine taking the circumstances of each specific case into account. This approach does not mean making general conclusions and rules for everyone….

It’s a simple, short statement, but say so much.  As Dr. Ed Peters notes, there is no middle ground between admitting someone to the Blessed Sacrament, or not.  And let me say, I am sick of hearing that these people are “denied the SacramentS.”  No, they are denied ONE Sacrament, the Most Blessed Sacrament. They can go to Confession.  They can receive Baptism.

But irrespective, what this “new approach” would seem to point to is just admitting these divorced and bigamist Catholics to receive.  This is a blatant violation of Christ’s own condemnation of people who divorce and remarry, because the Church does not recognize – and nor did Christ – divorce as a severance of marriage.   These people are adulterers, according to Our Blessed Lord. Calling the Church’s belief regarding the sinfulness of divorce and remarriage (adultery) a “discipline,” as Peters does, is a profound disservice.  If this is not a Doctrine, straight from our Lord’s lips and 2000 years old, nothing is.  We may as well close us shop.

The way I see the progressives trying to nuance this is with some claptrap about not changing “the general conclusions and rules for everyone,” but admitting the divorced and remarried “on a case by case basis.”  This is laughable, we all know what will happen, the “exception,” like Extraordinary Ministers of Communion or Latin in the Mass, will become the certain, unalterable rule in about 5 seconds.  It will make a mockery of the Church’s moral law.

As Peters does note, there seems a strong whiff of antnomianism (which says the Church has no moral law, “faith alone” is all that matters) about all this.  I think we see in this where the progressive, primarily European elements want to take this Synod. It is very disconcerting that the Secretary General seems to be on board with their ideas. I pray the more faithful bishops will be able to derail this monstrosity.  If passed, it will mark only the beginning of the progressive/modernist attempts to completely deconstruct the Church’s moral law.

“The government reserves a special hatred for the family……..” December 9, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Christendom, episcopate, error, family, foolishness, General Catholic, persecution, sadness, scandals, sickness, Society.
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I stumbled across the following at a secular site but I thought it eminently worth sharing.  Whether this extremely apparent trend is part of the great apostasy and persecution which will occur prior to the parousia, or whether it is just a sign of how sick our culture has become, it is a reality nevertheless.

One caveat to the below – only left-wing, enlightenment-informed, “liberty-oriented” governments of the type that came out of the English, American and French revolutions (that is, the near-universal form of national government today) are fundamentally oriented towards attacking the family, because the enlightened, “liberal” government can ultimately brook no competition.  While the US form of enlightenment atheist government is more conservative than most, and has taken longer to manifest the more negative tendencies of all “liberal” governments, it is still, irreversibly, of the same mold.  This is not a popular statement to make, but observing the trends in the US in comparison to many other, especially European, nations, the correlation seems clear.  The US is on the same path, simply 30-60 years behind its European contemporaries:

The long-term goal of the government’s social policies are to flatten society out into one atomized mass. There will be only the state and the individual, and the individual will have no protection, no mediating institutions, between itself and the state.

Antipathy towards a wide variety of actors–the Catholic Church, the Boy Scouts, “special interests” of all types, political parties, private universities–can all be understood in light of this fact.  [And all the examples listed (save for the generic special interests) are currently the target of ongoing campaigns of persecution and intimidation by the “liberal” government and its authoritarian allies in the culture, the entire lot of which are left wing to different degrees.]

The government reserves special hatred for the family, because the family is older than the state and, unless steps are taken, will outlast it. It gives the individual a locus of attention besides the state, and therefore, must be crushed. The ongoing destruction of the concepts of both marriage and family by the left is intended to remove permanently the transcendent family from the political sphere, leaving only mere biological relationships, which are not enough to inspire resistance to the state.

I think that’s a very astute comment, with the corollary that we are talking about governments steeped in the rhetoric and thinking of the endarkenment, the latter movement founded almost entirely on the premise of removing the influence of the Catholic Church upon society.

It is amazing how illiberal and oppressive our supposedly “free” societies are.  Yes, we may have the right to vote and elect our leaders (to the extent the elections are really free and fair, a very open question), but those leaders then have a power over our lives that a medieval “tyrannical” king would have found shocking, even repulsive.

It is only in the modern “liberal” society that government has arrogated to itself the right to delve deeply into the family, to assign “rights” and benefits, pick winners and losers, which have totally upended familial life in this country and many others.  From declaring marriage something that can be dissolved at the whim of one partner, to massively subsidizing and encouraging forms of birth control to limit family size, to redefining the very meaning of marriage, the ostensibly “liberal” state has waged a non-stop and open war on the family since its inception.  I should note here that American divorce laws, shortly after the Republic formed, were a scandal to many European countries that had not yet embraced “liberty.”  They were incredibly liberal even then, over 200 years ago.  So was the atheist/agnostic orientation of the US government, the first openly agnostic government in the West in around 1000 years. This latter factor had huge implications for family life.

Someone asked me once what could possibly replace the liberal “democratic” nation state.  I really don’t know.  But I also don’t think we will ever arrive at a solution so long as we continue to pretend that the United States as originally conceived, or as it is now, is the bestest friend the Church has ever had.  I think we need to seriously examine whether liberal democracy is conducive to the practice of the Faith, the virtuous ordering of the family life and human person, and the orientation of the entire culture towards the primary goal, the salvation of souls.

I believe it is not.  I believe more and more that this nation, and so many founded in its image and likeness, is inherently hostile towards the Christian religion and the Catholic Faith in particular.  The Catholic Faith is a totality that must exist and if not predominate, at least profoundly influence, all sectors of a society – political, economic, cultural, social, and of course religious.  But the liberal state says NO, the Church must confine Herself to religious matters only, otherwise She is an interloper in affairs not Her own and will be punished.  The fact that so many Catholics, including our leadership, in essence accept the liberal state’s claims is one of the prime sources for the schizophrenia so rampant in the Church today.

I think as time goes forward, and the state, particular the US, becomes more and more openly hostile to the Faith, more people will begin to recognize the root problem. It’s not violations of the 1st Amendment or liberal demonrat over-reach, it is part and parcel of the ideals upon which this nation were founded.  It might be possible to organize a democratic republic around the right practice of the Faith. But this one is not it.



It was an especially glorious Feast of the Immaculate Conception December 9, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Domestic Church, Eucharist, family, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Latin Mass, priests, Sacraments, sanctity, Tradition, Virtue.
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Yes, at MD we got the Immaculate Conception, instead of a non-required feast day on the following Monday.  It was great!  And a great sermon!  I’ll have to post on that, later.

But the reason THIS Immaculate Conception was even more glorious than usual was that my youngest daughter received her First Holy Communion.  She was so excited. I don’t recall any of my other children wanting to receive our Blessed Lord in the Eucharist as much as she did.  She had been asking for months when she could receive.  And when Father asked that she go to Confession several times before her First Communion, she took to Confession with gusto.  In fact, we had to kind of slow her down a bit, feeling that she might have been going for the wrong reason.

Another special factor was that my wife’s sister and her husband drove up from the San Antonio area for the blessed event.  That was very generous of them, and something they certainly didn’t have to do with the very poor road conditions.  This particular family has 18 children.  My wife’s family rocks Catholic pretty hard.  Good old hardcore Texas German Catholics.

Unfortunately, and completely understandably, many others who wished to attend were unable due to the road conditions.  Hopefully they will enjoy these photos.  My wife has many more.




The blessed event:



Thank you Father Gordon!

Oh, Elena was so happy yesterday, just beaming.  I know she received such immense Graces. I wish I had been as on fire when I first received Our Lord as she was, and is.  She had such a long list of prayer intentions for her Communion!  She is such a wonderful little girl, as all my girls are.


Do fewer men assist at Mass because the Mass is so feminized? December 9, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, catachesis, Dallas Diocese, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Latin Mass, Liturgy, scandals, secularism, self-serving, the return.
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I had written a long post around this picture, but WordPress ate it.  In a nutshell, there is a great deal of evidence that the Novus Ordo Mass is far more appealing to feminine perspectives than masculine ones.  There are numerous reasons for this, but the changes were very intentional and their impact was not unforeseen.  Men used to be the predominate leaders in the Church both clergy and lay, but now the lay side is dominated by women.  Daily and Sunday Mass attendance often sees huge imbalances between men and women.

Are men turned off by the Novus Ordo, or is men’s lack of involvement in the Church due more to cultural factors, or bad catechesis?  I would say yes, and I feel there is clear evidence (lost in my original attempt to post) that the Novus Ordo – in and of itself, absent the many permitted abuses like girl altar servers – is much less masculine in its orientation, prayers, the sense it conveys, etc.

Men have a certain inherit desire to be both leaders and to sacrifice for a greater cause. But we are also fallen, and seek to escape our responsibilities as leaders of Church and family and to enjoy ease and comfort.  The TLM appeals to men’s higher virtues more than the NO does.  My own experience shows that the sexual imbalance so often seen at NO Masses is greatly reduced at TLMs.  The ratio of attendance is much nearer 50-50 than the 75-25 or 60-40 seen in many new Masses.

The Mass is the primary mode of catechesis in the Church, and I don’t mean the sermon.  Yes, the prayers are very important, and the TLM prayers focus so much more on sacrifice, our need for conversion, propitiation, etc, that the sacrificial nature is much more strongly highlighted.  But it is even more in the unspoken aspects of the Mass, the postures, blessings, signs of the cross, orientation, etc., that a great deal is conveyed.  This is a Sacrifice. It is a huge mystery.  These things appeal to men.  The TLM is overtly masculine.  The NO, as outlined in the Missal, is much less so.  The NO as most men experience it, with numerous abuses and indults that undermine even the character of the Novus Ordo as promulgated, is profoundly feminized.

Sorry I lost the original post!  I spent a fair amount of time on it!