Austria was, even after World War II, one of the most visibly Catholic countries in the world. But after decades of being steeped in (America-imposed) secular materialism, Austrians recently elected a man president who now argues that if opposition to islam continues to grow, the result will be that ALL women will have to wear “headscarves,” by which he means the hijab.
I can’t quite follow the logic, either, but he seems to be declaring that opposition to islamification only emboldens muslims and, if that occurs, all women will eventually wind up in the hijab. Of course, if opposition to islam does not increase, Austria will wind up in the same place, with total submission of the state and individuals to islam. Suleiman the Magnificent must be whooping for joy in hell, if such were possible.
About the video, this is Sargon again, and Sargon’s an atheist, and prone to blasphemy, as well. I would advise playing the video without sound until the 3:50 mark, knowing that the subtitles are quotes from muslim men in Austria regarding their feelings towards atheists:
Yes. Absolutely. These people do want to be conquered. They are like the late Greek and Roman elites who had totally, entirely given up on their own birthright, and so they got the barbarians.
We need to seriously start thinking about a strategic reserve where Christendom can be preserved. It won’t be Europe.
Just a quick reminder of what these young, aggressive, cocksure muslim men are willing to kill over (content warning, Mohammad, like almost all the enemies of Christ, was wholly given over to his prurient lusts):
Normal for muslim men, perhaps.
David Wood has still more – all muslims gain from the activities of their radical brethren, which is why virtually no muslims oppose the activities of the jihadis, just as essentially no muslims opposed the armies of the Grand Turk, nor the Berber hordes that repeatedly invaded Christian Spain, nor any of the other non-stop wars of aggression islam has waged against Christendom:
We have our own dhimmis in the Catholic Church. Many of these are priests, mostly of a certain age, but not always. I have been called a racist and islamophobe for pointing out – much more mildly than here – the deplorable beliefs that muslims hold. To these dhimmis – including a couple of local pastors I am thinking of – ANY criticism of islam or any other religion they hold in esteem (which is every one but their own) is absolutely forbidden and is met with accusations of racism or some other -ism. They’d fit in very, very well at an antifa riot, for the rhetoric is the same.
I know most of this post is old news for regular readers. Islam is a satanic counterfeit of Christianity, the veritable antithesis of all the goodness and light Christ brought to the world. The quote from the horrid president of Austria is notable, however. He was barely elected over a rival who was pilloried in the media as being a “far right” neo-nazi. All over the world, the elites are using the same tactics, the same words to gain their ends. Which ends, apparently, include complete and total surrender to islam, and probable eventual conversion.
Enjoy paying the jizya.
Great sermon below. I have a vague sense of posting this some years ago when I first heard it, but I can’t find it now. Most likely, it will be new to you.
I really like how the priest points out the constant errors and failed declarations of modern science, which Dr. Edward Feser proved quite convincingly has evolved into a false religion of its own in his great book The Last Superstition. Not only that, but Descartes, Bacon, and others, filled with rationalist hubris, deliberately contrived “science” as something which would always war against religion, since they posited, and managed to convince great scads of people with, the notion that “science” would, and could, only be concerned with the material, what could be weighed, measured, and/or directly observed. In doing so, they set science on a radically different course from what it had held since ancient times, where theology was always regarded as the highest, or sacred, science. Not only was this a radically different course, but one that would inevitably become hostile, and develop a cultus of its own that would demand acceptance of claims on faith from the vast, vast majority of people, including the scientists themselves.
Thus, while no one has ever come close to observing the “big bang,” it is held as a dogma today. Evidence in support of the evolution of species is almost entirely inferential and open to argument, but argument is not permitted, lest one be called a science denier, or in a more ancient parlance, a heretic. The almost constant failures of science, such as those described below, are conveniently forgotten, while evidence from thousands regarding religious events like the apparitions at Fatima are derided as mass hysteria or a pious hoax.
But the evidence, even in this proud, skeptical scientific age, for Christ’s life, death, and resurrection are overwhelming, as this priest notes below. The vast preponderance of the evidence confirms that Christ lived, that He was crucified, that He was buried, and then rose again in spectacularly mysterious circumstances. The Shroud of Turin continues to this day to be scientifically inexplicable, as no known technology today could have created the image of the Shroud, let alone that of 2000 years ago. There is much, much more besides, in this excellent sermon which I believe dates (or is a repeat) from 2012 or 13:
Of course the tragedy of the Church today is that, to a degree never before seen in her history, the vast majority of self-described Catholics, whether lay, priest, or episcopate, doubt much or all of the Gospel account of Christ’s life, death, and resurrection. Most, no matter how scientifically illiterate, accept the claims of science as a matter of faith, but have severe doubts as to whether Christ instituted the Eucharist in a literal sense, commands obedience to the Doctrine He has given us, fed the 5000, was resurrected, or even lived. I have heard or read “priests in good standing” in Holy Mother Church express their disbelief on all of those realities, and many more besides. I could easily segue to another subject, but I won’t go down that rabbit hole today.
The Church has weathered innumerable crises in her long history, but never before has she been so afflicted with such an enormous lack of faith, and lack of belief in core matters of Doctrine, as she is today. It is a crisis of limitless proportions and shows little sign of abating, let alone resolving. But God has worked miraculous recoveries in the past. May He have the mercy on us to do so again.
Freedom is the Hijab April 6, 2017Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, Christendom, disaster, Ecumenism, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, pr stunts, rank stupidity, scandals, secularism, sickness, Society, suicide.
As a believing Catholic, I am all for modesty in dress on the part of everyone. Not just women, but everyone. I am so convinced of the necessity of modesty, that I am even in favor of certain societal norms and social pressures that would encourage people to dress (and behave) modestly, casting out of polite society egregious offenders against this norm, as was the case throughout Christendom for, oh, about 17-1900 years (I hedge a bit, not knowing what standards of dress were like in the period of the early Church).
But I stop short at people being physically coerced to dress with decorum and modesty. I do not think women should be beaten if they show 2″ too much leg, or don’t wear a full, stinking burqa. I do not think there should be religious police wandering around able to dish out corporal punishment on the spot, with no trial, no appeal.
Practice of virtue is a great source of salvific Grace. But virtue that is coerced is not such a source. We can argue at length about where to draw the line, or whether societal pressures would constitute coercion, but I think it not unreasonable to conclude that threatening severe corporal punishment or death for a violation against modesty is not only a bad thing in general, but something that is prone to abuse and capricious application (as we see from the video below).
But we have come to the point in this country, where the muslim infiltration/invasion has been allowed to go unchecked for two decades or more, that the nation’s “newspaper of record” is running op-eds from muslim women opining that the essence of freedom is found in being forced to cover themselves head to foot under threat of force from the men around them:
A great point I wish I had more time to flesh out today, but will hopefully get to tomorrow: why are the Left and islam such easy bedfellows, in spite of holding radically contrary beliefs on almost every subject imaginable? Well, aside from islam being the perfect tool to crush the Left’s highest priority target for destruction – Christianity – neither recognizes any authority but its own. They don’t recognize the value of (true) liberal democracy, they don’t recognize the value of Christianity, they don’t recognize the value of peaceful coexistence, all they recognize is power and the urgent command to obey their ideological dictates. Islam, through the practice of deliberate deceit known as taqqiyah, will make allies wherever it finds them, no matter how noxious they find their beliefs, so long as it serves the interests of the unholy “ummah.” The Left uses islam as almost their armed wing to attack the instituttions of Western Civilization and to serve as a battering ram against Christianity (in which they are far too often – almost always – aided by the Quislings within the Christian community).
Thus it actually makes a great deal of sense that they collaborate so much, so that the wholly vulgar vagina-fest known as the “Women’s March on Washington” was principally led and organized by a hijab-wearing muslim woman, a woman literally sporting a symbol of her submission to men. And yet that woman was portrayed as a feminist icon.
Circumcising the Root of All Evil January 18, 2017Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, Christendom, Domestic Church, family, General Catholic, huh?, manhood, sadness, silliness, Society, Tradition.
The post title is a bit tongue in cheek, Sensus Fidelium on Youtube posted the video below yesterday, an upload from a recent episode of the Crusade program of the St. Benedict Center in New Hampshire. The topic is voluntary male circumcision, which is done to the large majority of males (Jewish or otherwise) in infancy, generally at the hospital within a day or so of birth. I’ve always thought circumcision was mostly a question of taste with perhaps some overtones of cleanliness and moderation, but it appears at least one Catholic philosopher/ethicist has determined circumcision to be a barbaric practice that causes a huge gamut of (potential) deleterious health effects. None of which any of the males on either side of my family has ever experienced going back at least 4 generations, and all of which were circumcised.
I’m posting this not because I really care either way, this is a very personal decision. There are pros and cons on both sides and you can decide where you line up. It’s quite possible the medical benefits of circumcision have been overstated, but I think the dire claims made in the program of negative effects are also being dramatically overblown. Love, and do what you will, and all that.
The reason I’m posting this is the fascination I had with the responses on Youtube. People who had almost certainly never heard such a detailed (and one might even say, extremely opinionated) presentation on this subject before were suddenly lining up declaring circumcision to be a barbaric practice that must be stopped NOW. Which is odd, because, this is just one presentation, which may or may not be accurate. Why are folks getting so exercised over something they may have never heard a cogent argument on before? Are those expressing instant shock and outrage really in a position to judge whether or not this guy is really telling the truth, or maybe has gone a bit around the bend?
There was another aspect to that drew my attention – some pretty hardcore comments regarding Judaism. Certainly circumcision and Judaism have a long connection, but some of the direct commentary – leaving alone snide implications – regarding filthy Jews, et. al., was a bit extreme. I found that unfortunate.
As I said there are arguments on both sides, some people say circumcision negatively effects a man’s ability to feel certain pleasures, some say being uncircumcised can lead to accumulation of dirt and disease. I’ve never known anything different, so I have no way of knowing if these claims are right or not. I do think maybe we should tone down the instant outrage generation on every single little issue that comes along. If one wants to argue that circumcision is a bad practice that has outlived its usefulness, fine. He’s probably right. But for folks to turn it into a giant conspiracy and start to allude that you’re somehow less Catholic if you’ve been involved in this very optional, tangential practice, I think that’s where the circular firing squad and the shrinking of the membership of the True Remnant Church (TM) down to one (me!) starts to get a little extreme.
A New Miracle at Fatima, and the End of the World January 5, 2017Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, Christendom, Domestic Church, error, family, Four Last Things, General Catholic, Interior Life, Latin Mass, priests, sanctity, sickness, Society, The End, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
A sermon in two parts from the priest whose online presence is most warmly welcomed back. He discusses the original Miracle of the Sun in 1917, and a new one that occurred this past year in Fatima, which was witnessed by about 100 pilgrims to that great Marian shrine. The sermons are fairly long – the first, 38 minutes, the second, almost 43. So, you’ll be investing quite a bit of time, in spite of the priest’s fast speech. A huge amount of catechesis is contained herein, though much of the history of the original apparitions and miracles at Fatima may be review for most readers.
Regarding the new miracle that occurred, it happened on May 4, the day the Novena for Our Lady of Fatima typically starts. It happened in the 99th year since the original Miracle of the Sun.
Sadly in these times almost all people, including Catholics, have very little Faith in Our Lady, take very little heed of the warning present in the Miracle of the Sun, and basically dismiss any thought that they will be held strictly accountable for their actions in their lives (Catholics even more strictly so), either at their individual judgment or when this world will cease to exist. I am not as concerned as the priest is that Fatima, Francis, and other things point to an imminent Parousia. But the message he conveys is just as valid whether the world is scheduled by God to end in 10 months, or in 10,000 years.
An absolutely chilling recounting of the horrors of dying in the Flood, and even surviving it in the Ark, closes out the sermon. It’s worth listening to if only for that.
Moving on to part 2. Father leads off this second half of the sermon with a reassurance that, simply because many signs and portents may point to a relatively imminent end of the world, we don’t need to freak out and lose our sense of peace over that. More than likely, every one reading this will face their individual judgment before the Last Judgment occurs, but even should the Last Judgment occurs in our lifetimes, what, precisely, should we be doing differently than what we should already be doing? Be in the state of Grace, remain obedient, practice virtue, perform your vocation in life to the utmost of your ability, try to reach out to souls in charity by giving good example, etc., etc. The point of the warnings is to make sure people know they REALLY REALLY REALLY need to be doing their duty, because the time is probably much shorter than they think, but that applies whether the Parousia is happening this year or not. I could be hit by a bus tomorrow, whereas the Church has always declared that anyone who tries to fix a particular time for the end of the world is in error and cannot be believed.
Having said that, Father goes through the Apocalypse and various writings of Fathers and Doctors to explain how the end times will go down, starting with the Great Apostasy, which will occur within the Church toward the end of days. He notes that most Church Fathers believe the Great Apostasy will start within the clergy and bishops, and from there spread out to the faithful, corrupting the vast majority of souls.
I’ll not steal any more of Father’s thunder and reveal how the sermon ends, but I think you will find it as edifying and helpful as yesterday’s.
Please say at least three Hail Mary’s for the priest. He’s been relocated out of Texas.
Our house is one of “those” houses. The one with the Christmas lights up until February 2nd. Because that’s when the season ends, people! We also don’t put them out on Thanksgiving, but generally just a few days before Christmas itself. It varies, depending on the amount of time we have, because we put up quite a bit, usually, though the kids have thankfully taken over much of the task in recent years. We certainly don’t put them up the day after Thanksgiving and rip ’em down the day after Christmas, or even New Years.
Apparently this topic was worthy of a news story, and, interestingly, not only do most people believe Christmas lights should come down very quickly, a growing number of municipalities are instituting laws to that effect:
When we see the first twinkle of the lights in early December, it is amazing, even magical. But eighteen days after the holiday? So, when is the right time to take down Christmas decorations?…….
………“Today while I shoveled, somebody honked at me, I waved. He slowed down and said ‘Christmas is over’ and with an expletive,” he said.
It’s not like with political campaign signs. It’s Minnesota law those have to be down 10 days after the election. But in San Diego, California, you can get a $250 fine if your lights are still up after Feb. 2. [Well at least it’s till the 2nd. But a fine? C’mon.]
The Urban Dictionary even has a term for these people: Nerkles. It’s a combination of nerd and sparkle.
In Minneapolis, Brad Sutton admitted his giant wreath probably should be unplugged.
“I’ll be honest, we’re past that point. A week past the New Years, that’s enough,” said Sutton, as he sheepishly walked to the second story of his house and pulled the power cord.
Lisa Scherber said the end of January is her drop-dead point for leaving the lights on.
“It starts to look a little pathetic when the snow is melting, so we do turn them off,” she said.
Todd Zimmerman proposed a staggered system of light deadlines: “Christmas Lights stay on until the day after Christmas then they are off period. I actually don’t take down the outside Christmas lights until is is warm enough (like March, April, June, whatever) and the snow is off the roof. Inside Christmas lights and decorations come day New Years Day.”
But as Nancy Aleshire wrote on my blog, “Keeping lights up is a matter of personal preference. There are no laws against it. If people don’t like it they should get a life.”
This is a small thing, in the grand scheme, but indicative of a culture that has completely lost the meaning and spirit of Christmas. Christmas isn’t a day, a build up to a much longed for greed fest that ends
the day hours after the presents start getting unwrapped, it’s a season that STARTS on the 25th, extends through a glorious Octave, and continues on until Candlemas on February 2nd. We see the continuing commercialization and diminution of all the great holidays, both secular and religious. I was disgusted to see “Black Friday” commercials advertising stores opening at 6pm, 3pm, even noon on Thanksgiving day. And we’ll be inundated with “after Christmas sales” and all the rest – starting almost certainly on the holy day itself. I remember when the whole world was pretty much shut down on Christmas day. It was a big thing when a few convenience stores started staying open on Christmas in the mid-80s. Now it’s just another freaking day to shop. The religious nature of the holiday has been almost completely turned upside down, with the commercialization subsuming the sacred character of the season, as it has virtually everything else. ‘
But it’s happened, because people have wanted it to happen. If stores and businesses received a very cold shoulder, and, more importantly, absolutely no customers, then they wouldn’t be opening on these holy days. They do it because people want it, they want to exchange their not quite perfect gift for a more perfect one, which will be old and forgotten hours – days at best – after being bought.
I have tried in the past few years to be off work the entire 12 days of Christmas, from the 25th to the 6th. That probably won’t work this year because of my new job but I hope to return to the practice next year (inability to transfer vacation from one year to the next can be frustrating). Something else my wife and I try to do is to only allow the kids to open some presents on Christmas day and keep some for following days, allowing them to open one each day for a while. We usually haven’t enough for the full twelve days, and to be honest our attempts at spreading the joy haven’t always completely worked out. We’ll try again this year, and as the kids get older, it tends to get a bit easier.
But the lights are staying up until the 2nd, period. I really miss it when they come down. It’s very sad and contributes – as it should – to the sense of termination of a festive season and the start (nominally) of Septuagint, which often follows closely on Candlemas when it does not preempt it.
Thought for the Day: Could the Growing Worldwide Backlash Against Elites Extend into the Church? UPDATED November 10, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, Christendom, different religion, episcopate, Francis, General Catholic, Restoration, secularism, Society, the struggle for the Church, Tradition.
I’m out of time, but a quick thought – could what seems to be a growing worldwide rejection of the transnational global elites extend into the Church? There is of course evidence of a steadily increasing opposition to Francis’ attempt at radically changing the Church, and political parallels often do not apply to the Church, but could this general repudiation of elite authority on many levels have portents for the Church, just as the coalescing of conservative opposition to decades of liberal rule in England, the US, and the Vatican hastened the end of the Cold War and a Church which backed away from the excesses of the 60s and 70s, if there was not, unfortunately, a serious effort to roll them back? That this opposition was much less effective in reality than it may have appeared at the time, both politically and ecclesiastically, is important to note: while there were significant achievements in this period of the late 70s – early 00s, the conservative reaction both in politics and the Church in many ways continued to accept the liberal paradigms and institutionalize them.
Could this time be different? Could this be the start of a genuine reaction/restoration movement?
Sorry I can’t flesh this out more, discuss, if you feel so moved.
UPDATE: A little data that maybe lends some weight to my hypothesis? Catholics voted for the less morally offensive candidate for the first time since 1988:
A national exit poll is showing President-elect Donald Trump won the Catholic vote Tuesday, 52 percent to Hillary Clinton’s 45 percent.
The poll, published by CNN, shows 23 percent of Americans who voted this election season identified themselves as Catholic, while 27 percent said they were Protestant, 24 percent “Other Christian,” 15 percent “No Religion,” and three percent “Jewish.” Of the Catholics who voted, 52 percent voted for Trump and 45 percent voted for Clinton.
In April of 2015, Clinton criticized the beliefs of traditional faith groups, asserting that these beliefs would have to be “changed” to accommodate abortion.
“Far too many women are still denied access to reproductive health care… deep-seated cultural codes, religious beliefs and structural biases have to be changed,” she said.
In 2008, Catholics made up 27% of the voting electorate. That might be the more important factor than who they voted for: are Catholics becoming more faithful as a great number continue to fall away at a quickening pace (a pace likely accelerated by Francis’ shredding of Doctrine in all practical senses?).
Just a bit more grist for the mill. It is not insignificant both that Catholics have voted for the less moral candidate every chance they’ve had for nearly 30 years, and that THIS is the man they would choose to get behind, who pushed social conservative issues to the back burner for the most part. So perhaps this isn’t as hopeful as I thought. Then again, evangelicals gave more support to Trump than they did to Romney, McCain, or Bush. I think in this election, a desire to stop illegal immigration and send a clear rebuke to the self-proclaimed ruling class dominated all other considerations.
Start Novena to Our Lady of Victory/Most Holy Rosary TODAY! September 29, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Christendom, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, history, Novenas, Our Lady, sanctity, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
That’s today Sept. 29. Really should have started yesterday, but I’m late.
To the Queen of the Most Holy Rosary
Queen of the most holy Rosary, in these times of such brazen impiety, manifest thy power with the signs of thine ancient victories, and from thy throne, whence thou dost dispense pardon and graces, mercifully regard the Church of thy Son, His Vicar on earth, and every order of clergy and laity, who are sore oppressed in the mighty conflict. Do thou, who art the powerful vanquisher of all heresies, hasten the hour of mercy, even though the hour of God’s justice is every day provoked by the countless sins of men. For me who am the least of men, kneeling before thee in supplication, do thou obtain the grace I need to live righteously upon earth and to reign among the just in heaven, the while in company with all faithful Christians throughout the world, I salute thee and acclaim thee as Queen of the most holy Rosary.
Queen of the most holy Rosary, pray for us!
Our Lady Of The Holy Rosary Novena Prayer (start either Sept. 28 or 29)
My dearest Mother Mary, behold me, your child, in prayer at your feet. Accept this Holy Rosary, which I offer you in accordance with your requests at Fatima, as a proof of my tender love for you, for the intentions of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, in atonement for the offenses committed against your Immaculate Heart, and for this special favor which I earnestly request in my Rosary Novena:
(Mention your requests).
I beg you to present my petition to your Divine Son. If you will pray for me, I cannot be refused. I know, dearest Mother, that you want me to seek God?s holy Will concerning my request. If what I ask for should not be granted, pray that I may receive that which will be of greater benefit to my soul.
I offer you this spiritual Bouquet of Roses because I love you. I put all my confidence in you, since your prayers before God are most powerful. For the greater glory of God and for the sake of Jesus, your loving Son, hear and grant my prayer. Sweet Heart of Mary, be my salvation.
This novena is to be said along with a daily rosary.
New Movie EWTN Affiliate Focuses on Alinskyite Influence in the Church September 20, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Christendom, disaster, episcopate, error, Francis, General Catholic, It's all about the $$$, paganism, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, the struggle for the Church.
I guess it’s throwback Tuesday on the blog, I’m hitting a lot of subjects I covered in depth in the past but sort of moved on from.
Probably many of you know about Saul Alinsky and his influence on the current president, the Catholic Church (especially the Archdiocese of Chicago), and the advance of cultural marxism in the US generally. True to his paramour, satan, he has been a one man wrecking crew. Coupled with the Frankfurt School penetration of the federalized education industrial complex, Alinskyite “social justice” warriors have probably done more to advance the creeping socialization of the United States than any other group.
Someone at EWTN apparently recently figured this out, because there is a new movie coming out on 09/22 that features much EWTN talent, like Fr. Mitch Pacwa, Fr. Andrew Apostoli, etc., discussing the baleful influence of Saul Alinsky and his Rules of Radicals. I’m sure it’s a well done production and a great message to get out, but, ummm………where were you in 2008?
Well, the reason is, there is always a steady stream of folks who have advanced to a point where a message like what I expect from this movie will have a significant impact on them. So while perhaps quite a bit late to stop the fundamental transformation of our nation, perhaps it will help prepare a few souls for the future that awaits us:
Summary from the website:
From the producers of the Gabriel Award winning television series “SAINTS ALIVE!” on EWTN, comes “A WOLF IN SHEEP’S CLOTHING”, a new feature docudrama on Saul Alinsky, the father of community organizing and author of “Rules for Radicals”. The film is a lens into America’s cultural Marxism euphemistically called ‘progressivism.’
With all the radical transformations of America and its religious freedoms, politics, economy, education, healthcare, courts, media, cinema, music, art, architecture; the film will help Catholics and all Christians understand “how we’ve gotten to where we are today” and “what’s behind” the amorality, sexual revolution, political correctness, gender confusion that is destroying our families and culture.
This is no conspiracy theory! It’s the real story of Alinsky and his movement. It’s the classic teachings of the Church with insights from philosopher Dr. Alice von Hildebrand, Fr. Mitch Pacwa, S.J. (who as a Jesuit scholastic was trained in Alinskyian organizing), Fathers Glenn Sudano & Andrew Apostoli (co-founders with Fr. Benedict Groeschel of Franciscan Friars of the Renewal), Stephanie Block (who wrote the definitive 4 volume study of Alinskyian organizing) [Stephanie’s great. She’s always worth a listen]. Actors play Alinsky, Popes St. John Paul II & Leo XIII, Blessed Jerzy Popieluszko & others.
Most interesting to contemplate is the degree to which leftists and left-leaners within the Church were eager to provide the Alinskyite movement with its first big success at penetrating a church for the much sought after money and moral credibility. It’s been no stopping for them ever since, which is also how we have gotten such poisonous doctrines as the “seamless garment.”
But perhaps most interesting of all is the correlation between the present pontificate and the beliefs, methods, and techniques of personal destruction honed and Saul Alinsky. I’m sure that won’t be part of this movie, but you can ruminate on that as an extra credit assignment to work on at home.
Remember to show your work.
How to Keep Faith During Martyrdom: St. Alphonsus August 25, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, catachesis, Christendom, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Holy suffering, martyrdom, mortification, persecution, reading, Saints, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
If you’ve read many of the lives of the Saints, especially those involved in martyrdom, you may have wondered as I have, at the amazing ability of these Saints to keep their faith through all manner of unimaginable tortures: being cooked alive on a grill, flayed alive, crushed to death, torn limb from limb by wild animals, etc.
While Grace is the most obvious source of their success, Saint Alphonsus notes that God gives more Grace to those who cooperate with it, and that the martyrs had certain behaviors that helped them become Saints where others failed. And it’s important to note that many put to the trial of a blood martyrdom HAVE failed, they have fallen away, and sometimes in great numbers.
That is the subject of Saint Alphonsus’ guidance on the characteristics of successful martyrs I quote today, part of a series of characteristics that I hope to cover over the next several days. All of the above comes from The Victories of the Martyrs, pp. 38-9:
The examples of the martyrs teach us also to have immediate recourse to the assistance of God, by earnest supplication, when we feel ourselves disconsolate or weak under affliction. Thus did the holy martyrs. As their torture increased, they multiplied their prayers and secured the victory. St. Theodore, after a long endurance of his tortures, was stretched upon burning tiles; feeling the pain penetrating to his very heart, he besought the Lord to mitigate the torture, and persevered to the end. There have, on the contrary, been examples of Christians, who, failing to invoke the assistance of the Almighty, have fallen off from the confession of the Faith, and forfeited the glorious crown. An example is found in the acts of the martyrs of Japan. An aged man, having the torture for a considerable time, but failing to invoke heavenly aid, denied his faith a few moments before he expired – a startling warning to all, that perseverance in prayer, in times of temptation and distress, is that which alone can insure us the victory.
But the most important lesson which we learn from the martyrs in the necessity of the love of God: He who loveth not abideth in death (1 Jn iii:14). We cannot manifest our love of God so well by a multitude of actions performed for his glory, as by a willingness to suffer for his sake. St. Gordianus replied to the tyrant, who threatened to put him to death if he did not deny the name of Jesus: “You threaten death! but my greatest regret is, that I can die but once for Jesus Christ.” In a similar manner, St. Procopius exclaimed to the tyrant, who was directing further tortures: “Torment as much as thou wilt, but know that to one who truly loves Jesus Christ, nothing is dearer than to suffer for his sake.” “And did the Saints speak thus,” says St. Bernard, “because they were insensible to torments? No.” continues the holy Doctor, “they were neither frantic nor insensible, but their love of Jesus Christ caused them to esteem it all joy to suffer and to die for his glory.” This ardent love of God is certainly the greatest spiritual advantage to be derived from the perusal of the acts of the martyrs; the recollection of their conduct will make us ashamed to repine under the tribulations which divine Providence sends us, and will strengthen us to receive them with resignation.
I add that death, which is the tribute that everyone must pay, is the greatest of all our tribulations, and that makes not only sinners but the just tremble. Our Savior Himself as man wished to show the fear that He felt in the face of death, so that He began to pray to His Father to free Him from it. But at the same time He teaches us to accept death according to the good pleasure of God by saying: Nevertheless not My will, but Thine be done (Matt xxvi:39). The following is the way in which we acquire the glory of martyrdom: It is by accepting death to please God and conform to His will.……
Incredible though it may have seemed a few short years ago, Catholics in this country have reasonable cause to start preparing themselves for martyrdom, even to the point of blood. No, there is no particular, imminent threat of this, but the general societal trends all point in this direction: the rise of militant atheism, rank indifference and even apostasy among the ranks of self-professed Catholics, a government on acquiring unlimited power and brooking no competition, and a sexular pagan ethos that is increasingly becoming a sort of litmus test to be accepted into a whole range of activities necessary to life.
I pray this meditation on the elements of a successful martyr will be useful to you. Above all, stay as close as possible to Our Lord and Lady at the Foot of the Cross.