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Cardinal Baldisseri proclaims “evolution” of Dogma, in contradiction of St. Pius X February 4, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, disaster, Domestic Church, episcopate, error, family, General Catholic, horror, Papa, sadness, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sickness, Society.
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Edward Pentin has another disturbing revelation regarding Cardinal Baldisseri’s statements to the conclave at the Vatican last month of many large pro-family organizations.  In a quote I have not seen elsewhere, Baldisseri discusses his views on Dogma, and how it can “evolve,” using the term in the same sense as the modernists condemned over a century ago by Saint Pius X.  If one reads the entire Oath Against Modernism, it is quite easy to find that Pius X completely repudiated the concept that Dogmas could “evolve” into contradictory meanings, or even be watered down to the point that they have essentially no meaning or force, even as a “pastoral” recourse.

First, Cardinal Baldiserri’s quote.  It should be mentioned that he is the man hand-picked by Pope Francis to lead both sessions of the Extraordinary Synod on the Family, both last year’s, and that coming this October:

The head of the Synod of Bishops secretariat, responsible for organizing the highly controversial October Synod on the Family, told Aleteia last week: “There’s no reason to be scandalized that there is a cardinal or a theologian saying something that’s different than the so-called ‘common doctrine.’ This doesn’t imply a going against. It means reflecting. Because dogma has its own evolution; that is a development, not a change.”

The contrast between his comments and St. Pius’ ‘Oath Against Modernism’ is striking, and worth highlighting given the confusion surrounding this synod and the engineering that seems to be taking place behind the scenes.

Now a few choice quotes from the Oath in rebuttal:

I entirely reject the heretical’ misrepresentation that dogmas evolve and change from one meaning to another different from the one which the Church held previously….. [Is that not what is being proposed in the “openings” to adulterers, fornicators, and the perverse?  Is it not an “evolution” of belief that winds up being completely opposed to the prior belief and practice of the Church?]

……I also reject the error of those who say that the faith held by the Church can contradict history, and that Catholic dogmas, in the sense in which they are now understood, are irreconcilable with a more realistic view of the origins of the Christian religion……[Which rejects the modernist error of antiquarianism, which posits that the earliest practice of the Faith was the purest and best. Of course, since the earliest practice of the Faith is somewhat unclear, that gives the modernists ample room to altar the Faith out of all recognition, changing it in just about any way to please them. Antiquarianism, by the way, was the principle argument in favor of the liturgical revolution and the Novus Ordo, even though the final “manufactured product,” as Pope Benedict described it, would have been in many respects completely alien to the early Church]

…….I firmly hold, then, and shall hold to my dying breath the belief of the Fathers in the charism of truth, which certainly is, was, and always will be in the succession of the episcopacy from the apostles. The purpose of this is, then, not that dogma may be tailored according to what seems better and more suited to the culture of each age; rather, that the absolute and immutable truth preached by the apostles from the beginning may never be believed to be different, may never be understood in any other way.

That last sentence was both a warning by Pope Saint Pius X to our own time, and a rejection of the principle argument of the modernists – that Dogma not just can, but must change, to suit the changing moods and emphases of men in different times.  Thus, to the modernist, the very idea of unchanging, immutable Dogma, always interpreted and practiced in the same manner, is not just wrong, but evil.  To the modernist, there was no Resurrection, there was no God Incarnate, there was just a group of fanatical followers of one of many intinerant preachers to be found in what is now Palestine at that time, and they got together and willed this religion – a creation of man, not “God” (if he even exists) – into being.  The religion known as Christianity/Catholicism was formed to be the “ideal” religious product for its time, and thus contained the beliefs it did to appeal to the people in those ancient days (I guess being burned alive, stoned to death, and tortured/martyred in innumerable ways was just wildly popular back then).

Times are different now, of course, and so the Church must have different beliefs.  That this just happens to be exactly what the world (and the devil) has always wanted the Church to do is just a happy coincidence, I suppose.  That is why men like Kung, Kasper, and their ilk, speak of the Resurrection as a myth or fantasy, cobbled together to wow the easily fooled masses of the Roman era.  That speaks both to their own preening elitism (believing men of previous times, and the great mass of people today, to be gullible dupes), and complete lack of faith.

But for people of faith, people don’t just believe but KNOW that Jesus Christ is God Incarnate, that He walked this earth, that He died for our sins, and was resurrected from the dead on the third day, modernists are the height of folly and even, I dare say, stupidity.  That is why Pope Saint Pius X decried them in such strident terms.  Unfortunately, modernism went underground and survived that great Saint’s efforts to crush it.  It exploded to the surface at Vatican II, and is still very much alive today, if increasingly elderly and decrepit.  But wherever we encounter modernism, we must always keep in mind this great saintly Pope’s condemnation of it.  Tragically, that modernism remains so widespread it fills almost every corner of the Church, even those who would, if they could, remain innocent of it.  But a time will come when it shall be beaten back and the glory of Christ’s Truth shine to the entire world again.  I do not know when that time will be, but I know, as you know, that God, and his Church, shall triumph in the end.

So let the modernists rave.  Let them spout their errors.  We shall oppose them even as we pray for them in the charity Christ commands us to have.  And in the end, once again, the Church shall be the Church and the Truth shall be set free.


Sister Smile and the Devastated Vineyard February 4, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, religious, sadness, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sickness, Society.
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Interesting sermon below that uses the sad life of Sister “Smile” – the Belgian nun Jeanine Deckers (Sister Luc Gabrielle) – as a type for the collapse of the practice of the Faith in the 1960s.  Briefly, Sister Luc Gabrielle composed a wretched little pop song that, inexplicably, was immensely popular in the early 60s.  Her religious community encouraged her recording the song and subsequent stardom, possibly out of a desire for the immense funds such stardom would bring.  Unfortunately, as happened so frequently in that period, the strength of the vocation was no match for the allurements of the world, and Sister Luc Gabrielle left the Missionary Dominicans and later practiced a very disordered life.  It was so disordered and perverse, as a matter of fact, that she became a lesbian and a radical modernist/progressive who attacked the Faith at every turn.  Her life was so upside-down that Jeanine Deckers eventually ended her life in a double suicide with her perverse partner in 1985, and yet somehow received a Church burial.

The priest below compares the life of Deckers to the crisis that has afflicted the Church.  It is incredibly tragic, but Deckers life and subsequent death are quite emblematic of that crisis, which has ended in the spiritual death of tens if not hundreds of millions of former Catholics and Catholics in name only.

It’s a little cheeky, but I do think the priest is correct is finding a connection between this dopey song and the sentiment sweeping the Church at that time that a “new pentecost” was around the corner, one that would, just coincidentally, happen to make Catholicism BFFs with the world.  And what a pleasant thing that would be!  Instead of seeing the world as something of a threat to be rejected, we could all gather around the campfire, with Sister Luc Gabrielle strumming her guitar, as we sang kumbayah.

Teaching church versus listening church.  Yes, now we listen to sodomites and adulterers, too.  We listen so well!  But we no longer have much to teach, or to say, to anyone.

Quite a few more points are made in the video. I’m not sure the world intentionally used Deckers with malice aforethought, but it just took advantage of the opportunity as it presented itself.  She was highly emblematic of what occurred in religious life, and especially women’s religious life, after the Council.  The radicalism, embrace of perversion, worldliness, rejection of traditional piety, rejection of morality…….yep, she details the collapse in religious life in microcosm quite well.

See what you think.  Today not good day for blogging.

Gueranger on Septuagesima Sunday: run the race as to win February 4, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Bible, catachesis, General Catholic, Grace, Interior Life, Latin Mass, Liturgical Year, priests, Tradition, Virtue.
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The Gospel for Septuagesima Sunday in the Traditional Latin Mass is St. Matthew XX:1-16, which is the parable of the owner of a vineyard, who goes into Parable+of+the+workers+in+the+vineyard-1600x1200-19487the market at different times of the day to find men to work in his vineyard.  He gives the same amount of money to those who came at the 11th hour, as to those who came at the first.  This caused the earlier arrives some grief, but they were paid what they agreed to.  They felt they should have been paid more than those who did only a little work.

As Dom Prosper Gueranger notes below, this parable was directed at the Jews, to prepare them for the fact that the Kingdom of God Christ established would be open to the Gentiles, as well.  This scandalized many Jews, and played a role in their rejection of Christ.  The Jews had expected the Messiah to be one who would provide them worldly exaltation: power, riches, military victory, even revenge against old enemies.  But that is not the Kingdom Christ came to establish, and the Jews thus rejected that Kingdom as not living up to their expectations.

I hope you find the exegesis below from Dom Gueranger illuminating, as I did:

It is of importance that we should well understand this parable for the Gospel, and why the Church inserts it into today’s Liturgy.  Firstly, then, let us recall to mind on what occasion our Savior spoke this parable, and what instruction He intended to convey by it to the Jews.  He wishes to warn them of the fast septuagesima2014approach of the day when their Law is to give way to the Christian Law; and He would prepare their minds against the jealousy and prejudice which might arise in them, at the thought that God was about to form a Covenant with the Gentiles. The vineyard is the Church in its several periods, from the beginning of the world to the time when God Himself dwelt among men, and formed all true believers into one visible and permanent society. The morning is the time from Adam to Noah; the third hour begins with Noah and ends with Abraham; the sixth hour opens with the age of the prophets, and closes with the birth of the Savior.  The Messiah came at the eleventh hour, when the world seemed to be at the decline of its day.  Mercies unprecedented were reserved for this last period, during which salvation was to be given to the Gentiles by the preaching of the Apostles.  It is by this mystery of mercy that our Savior rebukes the Jewish pride.  By the selfish murmurings made against the master of the house by the early laborers, our Lord signifies the indignation which the scribes and Parable of Vineyard Workerspharisees would show at the Gentiles being adopted as God’s children.  Then He shows them how their jealousy would be chastised: Israel, that had labored before us, shall be rejected for their obduracy of heart, and we Gentiles, the last comers, shall be made first, for we shall be made members of that Catholic Church, which is the bride of the Son of God.

This is the interpretation of our parable given by St. Augustine and St. Gregory the Great, and by the generality of the holy fathers.  But it conveys a second instruction, as we are assured by the two holy doctors just named.  It signifies the calling given by God to each of us individually, pressing us to labor, during this life, for the kingdom prepared for us.  The morning is our childhood.  The third hour, according to the division used by the ancients in counting their day, is sunrise; it is our youth.  The sixth hour, by which name they called our midday, is manhood.  The eleventh hour, which immediately preceded sunset, is old age.  The Master of the house calls his laborers at all these various hours.  They must go that very hour. They that are called in the morning may not put off their starting for the vineyard, under pretext of going afterwards, when the Master shall call them later on.  Who has told them that they shall live to the eleventh hour?  They that are called at the third hour may be dead at the sixth.  God will call to the labors of the last hour such as shall be living when that hour comes; but if we should die at midday, that last call will not avail us.  Besides, God has not promised us a second call, if we excuse ourselves from the first.   

———-End Quote———-

Our Blessed Lord stressed through several such parables the need to answer His call when He makes it, because He may not make it again.  Think of the parable of the virgins and their lamps awaiting the bridegroom, or the rich man who prepared a feast for his friends who did not come, and so he invited strangers. It is true that Our Lord is very generous and calls to many of us repeatedly, but we risk “the outer darkness, where there will be wailing and resurrection2gnashing of teeth” (Mt. VIII:12) if we die without having responded.

I also found Gueranger’s exposition on the Epistle from Septuagesima (1 Cor IX,X) highly edifying.  This is St. Paul’s exhortation to finish the race, to eschew earthly glory for a crown that does not perish:

St. Paul tells us that this world is a race, wherein all must run; but that they alone win the prize, who run well.  Let us, therefore, rid ourselves of everything that could impede us, and make us lose our crown.  Let us not deceive ourselves: we are never sure, until we reach the goal.  Is our conversion more solid than was St. Paul’s?  Are our good works better done, or more meritorious, than were his?  Yet he assures us that he was not without the fear that he might perhaps be lost; for which cause he chastised his body, and kept it in subjection to the areopagusspirit. 

……..We have a bias that inclines us to evil; so that our only means of keeping our ground is to sacrifice the flesh to the spirit.  To many this is very harsh doctrine; hence, they are sure to fail; they never can win the prize.  Like the Israelites spoken of by our apostle, they will be left behind to die in teh desert, and so lose the promised land…….So true is it that nothing can make a salutary impression on a heart which is obstinately set on fixing all its happiness in the things of this present life; and though it is force, each day, to won that they are vain, yet each day it returns to them, vainly but determinedly loving them. 

The heart, on the contrary, that puts its trust in God, and mans itself to energy by the thought of the divine assistance being abundantly given to him that asks it, will not flag or faint in the race, and will win the heavenly prize, God’s eye is unceasingly on all them that toil and suffer.

———–Really End Quote————

I have found all of Dom Gueranger’s little expositions on Septuagesima (they continue for each day of the week) quite insightful.  His volumes on the Liturgical Year are surely gems.  They are expensive, but I would say, quite worth it.  And, of course, you can find the entire volumes on line for free, but I cannot read for long like that.  I need a printed page in front of me.

That’s because I’m so awesomely old school.

Remember when: 1970s oil crisis and the falsity of “peak oil” February 4, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, Basics, error, foolishness, history, secularism, silliness, Society, technology.
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Back when I was in school, I remember being forced to watch cheesy movies from the 70s talking about the “energy crisis,” which was really a crisis of policy rather than what it was portrayed as.  That portrayal all served a purpose, and for a few years in the 70s the vast majority of Americans were utterly convinced – based on their own experience to some degree but mostly what they were propagandized to believe – that the world would “run out of oil” in a few short years.  Now, 40 years on, we still haven’t run out, prices are lower than they have been in years, and proven reserves plus expected technological improvements mean that supplies will meet current and forecast demand for another century or so.  Saudi Arabia alone claims to still have nearly 200 billion barrels in recoverable reserves, this after already producing 100 billion barrels.

40 years ago, 30 years ago, even less than 20 years ago, even most oil industry analysts believed that domestic oil production in the United States was more or less played out, save for offshore.  Then prices spiked for a number of reasons, and fracking became a realistic alternative.  Suddenly, the US was on pace to be the world’s number one producer of oil again, and would even produce enough so that imports could be limited to more reliable suppliers like Canada and Mexico.  That’s been derailed by the Saudis for now, who appear to be trying to crush fracking more or less for spite (because as soon as they cut production and prices go back up, fracking will return), but the broader point is this: my dad worked in the oil industry for 45 years.  In that time, the scale of innovation and technology developed to exploit previously unrecoverable supplies has been staggering. My old radio partner Jim Middleton gambled a large corporation’s future on a wildcat well on the North Slope of Alaska. That gamble paid off, and most of the West Coast’s gasoline still comes down the Trans Alaska Pipeline.  Taking the experience of over 100 years of oil industry technological development, together with a loong history of gloom and doom regarding the inevitable demise of oil and natural gas as the backbone of the world’s energy infrastructure – almost always politically motivated – and I am one extreme skeptic of theories like “peak oil” and all the rest.

None of that is to say that things like fracking don’t have down sides.  The environmental concern and “earthquakes” it supposedly causes are more than doubtful (they are political tools used to oppose something environmentalists don’t like as a matter of course), but what isn’t is the fact that production on fracked wells in many formations tails off terribly after the first year.  That means it is more difficult to recover the expense of drilling these types of wells (which is high, indeed).  The Saudis may well crush fracking for a time, but when it comes back some formations, like the Barnett here in North Texas, will probably not be much exploited again, unless prices reach really high levels.  Others, like the Eagle Ford and Bakken, look like better plays.

But as for “running out of oil,” it will never happen.  And even oil and natural gas becoming so rare, and thus so expensive, that they can no longer form the bedrock energy supply for the world……..that won’t happen in your or my lifetime, either. Not unless you’re 5  years old now and will live to be 120.  Maybe then, but I doubt that, too. I don’t care what the video you watched or the book you read on “peak oil” said.  Not. Gonna. Happen. Huge reserves will probably be found in ultra-deep water (>10,000 ft), or other places, technology will be developed to exploit them, and while prices may rise a great deal in the far future, and fluctuate greatly in the interim, it will be a very, very long time before we “run out of oil” in any practical sense.

No, the only way that oil and natural gas will cease to be the primary form of energy in the world in the near term is through government policy.  I find it no coincidence that after it became apparent that the “energy crisis” of the 70s was just a temporary disruption due to bad policy, the environmentalists started dreaming up fantasies of global warming (which really took off in the mid-80s, after it was clear we weren’t running out of oil or anything else) and heavily promoting them. It is amazing how much such a bad and unproven theory has affected policy already (ahem……rather like evolution). Given their druthers, the elites pushing this garbage would have us all starving in the cold while they jet around the world to attend conferences at 5 star resorts in places like Davos.  It’s a new aristocracy they seek, and they don’t much like the middle class, with our gauche habits and suburban lifestyle.  They seek a two-class society: them, the elites, and the rest of us, the little people.  More and more, I think classism of this type drives much of leftist belief and action, especially among the small but incredibly influential limousine liberal set.

I’m rambling.  Here’s the video that resulted in your being tortured with my incoherent thoughts:


Just what is Septuagesima, anyways? February 4, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Latin Mass, Lent, Liturgical Year, priests, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
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Many readers not familiar with the traditional liturgical calendar may wonder what this “Septuagesima” I mention from time to time is.  The video below discusses the nature of Septuagesima in some details, as well as giving some understanding of the purpose it serves.

In brief, Septuagesima is a period of moderate penance to get one ready for the heavy duty penance of Lent.  It is a period of preparation.  Since Lent is the major penitential season of the liturgical year, it makes sense to get ready for it by starting some of the penitential practices in advance. I, for one, have found Septuagesima very helpful; in years past, I would often feel that Ash Wednesday snuck up on me, and I did not have a program of prayer, penance, and alms giving worked out in advance.  Septuagesima is a period to do just that – to start ramping up the prayer, the penance, and thinking about what kinds of alms one might be able to give this Lent.

The sermon also discusses Lent and the performance of penance generally. Penance is so efficacious of Grace and is vital to the practice of virtue!  We can scarcely advance in virtue without learning to master our appetites and develop a strong spirit of self-denial.

The priest also makes the very important point that just because the practice of penance has been de-emphasized greatly in the past several decades, that does not mean it is not important.  Our Blessed Lord said penance was necessary for salvation.  Even if high leaders in the Church seem to minimize penance or treat it as some dated medieval neo-Pelagian practice, that doesn’t mean we are absolved of our duty to practice it.  Woe to them that say so, but let us not be fooled.

To me, Septuagesima reveals the great wisdom of the Church’s liturgical calendar.  I love the wisdom of having a sort of “warm-up period” for Lent.  Lent should be a period of great devotion for us, as we fast in union with Our Lord’s own fast of 40 days in the desert, in preparation for the great Feast of His glorious Resurrection.  It is a shame it was deleted from the liturgical calendar in the – ahem – reforms of the 1960s.

Anyway, I hope you find this video edifying!  I did when I heard it the first time back, and picked up more listening to it again.