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Thirty Four Old Testament proofs that Jesus Christ was indeed the foreseen Messiah July 20, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Bible, catachesis, Ecumenism, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, sanctity, Society, Tradition.
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Most of these are not generic prophecies, either, but very specific.  This is the kind of thing that used to be taught to youth that gave them very solid grounds for faith in the reality that Jesus Christ is both God and man, the Second Person of the Holy Trinity.  I sure never learned many of these in Methodist or Episcopalian formation.  I very much doubt many Catholics have learned these over the past several decades.  From The Catechism Explained pp. 165-169 and condensed for you:

1. The Messias was to be born in Bethlehem – Michaes says “Thou Bethlehem Ephrata art a little one among the thousands of Juda, but out of thee shall come forth unto Me He Who is to be the Ruler in Israel; and His going forth is form the beginning unto the days of eternity (Mich v:2).

2. The Messias was to come at a time when the Temple was still standing – The prophet Aggeus comforted the Jews returning from the Babylonian captivity, then re-building the destroyed temple: “the Desired of all nations should come, and fill it with His glory” (Agg ii:8-10).

3. The Messias was to come when the Jews were no longer an independent kingdom – Jacob, in blessing his sons before his death, said to Juda: “The sceptre shall not be taken away from Juda, till He come that is to be sent, and to Him shall be the expectation of the nations” (Gen xlix:10)……..In the time of Herod a Redeemer was looked for all over Judea. Herod was alarmed at the inquiry of the Magi for the new-born King (Matt ii:3); the Jewish people thought that Saint John the Baptist was the Messias (Lk iii:15)…….Even among the heathen there was, at the time of Christ, an expectation of a deliverer, who would banish crime and restore peace to the world (Virg., Ecl. 9).

4. The prophet Daniel predicted the time of the Savior’s birth almost exactly

5. The Messias was to be born of a virgin of the House of David – As a sign God gave to King Achaz the following prophecy: “Behold a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and His name shall be called Emmanuel [God with us]” (Is vii:14).  And of the tribe of which the Messias is to be born the prophet Jeremias says, “Behold the days come, saith the Lord, that I will raise up to David a just branch, and a king shall reign and shall be wise, and shall execute judgement and justice on the earth (Jer xxiii:5).

6. The Messias was to be preceded by a precursor or forerunner, who was to preach in the desert, and to live an angelic life – Isaias says of this forerunner, that he was to be “the voice of one crying in the desert; Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make straight His paths” (Is xl:3).  And God says through the mouth of Malachias: “Behold, I send My angel, and he shall prepare My way before My face.  And presently the Lord, Whom you seek, shall come to His Temple (Mal iii:1).  This precursor was John the Baptist.

7.  With the Messias a new star was to appear – The prophet Balaam announced to the King of Moab, when the Israelites were approaching: “I shall see Him, but not now; I shall behold Him, but not near; a star shall come out of Jacob, and a scepter shall rise up from Israel” (Numb xxiv:17).

8. The Messias was to be adored by kings from distant lands, and they were to bring Him gifts (Ps lxxi:10).

9. At the time of the birth of the Messias many children were to be put to death – We read in the prophet Jeremias, “A voice was heard on high, of lamentation and mourning and weeping; of Rachel weeping for her children, and refusing to be comforted, because they are not” (Jer xxxi:15).  Rachel died in Bethlehem and was buried there (Gen xxv:19).

10. The Messias was to fly to Egypt, and to return again from thence (Osee xi:11).

11. The Messias was to be the Son of God (Ps ii:7) – Through the prophet Nathan God promises David the Redeemer and says: “He will call Me Father, and I will call Him Son” (II Kings vii:14).

12. He shall be at the same time both God and man – Isaias says: “A Child is born to us, and a Son is given to us; and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, God, the Mighty, the Father of the world to come, the Prince of peace” (Is ix:6).

13.  He was to be a great worker of miracles – “God Himself will come and save you.  then shall the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped. Then shall the lame man leap as the hart, and the tongue of the dumb shall be loosened” (Is xxxv:5-7).

14. He was to be a priest like to Melchisedech (Ps cix:4)

15. He was to be a prophet and teacher of the people – To Moses God had said, “I will raise up unto them a prophet, out of the midst of thy brethren, like to thee” (Deut xviii:13).  As prophet the Messias was to teach and to prophecy.  He was also to be the teacher of the nations (Is xlix 1-6).

16. He was to be King of a new kingdom (Jer xxiii:5) which was never to be destroyed, and was to embrace all other kingdoms (Dan ii:44).  Before Pilate Christ proclaimed Himself a king, and said, “My kingdom is not of this world,” i.e., His Kingdom was to be a spiritual one (Jn xviii:36).

17. The Messias was to enter into Jerusalem riding on an ass (Zach ix:9).

18. He was to be sold for thirty pieces of silver. “And I took thirty pieces of silver, and I cast them into the house of the Lord” (Zach xi:12-13).  Judas threw down the money in the Temple (Matt xxvii:5-7).

19. He was to be betrayed by one who ate at the same table with Him (ps xl:10).

20. His disciples were to forsake Him at the time of His Passion (Zach xiii:7).

21.  He was to be mocked (Ps xxi:7), beaten, spit upon (Is l:6), scourged (Ps lxxii:14), crowned with thorns (Cant iii:11)(, and given gall and vinegar to drink (Ps lxviii:22).

22. For His garments lots were to be cast (Ps xxi:19).

23. His hands and feet were to be pierced with nails (Ps xxi:17).

24. He was to die between two evil-doers (Is liii:9).

25. He was to be patient as a lamb in His sufferings (Is liii:7), and was to pray for His enemies (Is liii:12).

26. He was to die willingly and for our sins (Is liii:4-7).

27. He was to make His grave with the rich (Is liii:9), and it was to be glorious (Is xi:10).

28.  His body was not to undergo corruption (Ps xv:10) – and the Church has always taken lack of corruption of the mortal remains a very strong sign of heroic sanctity in process of canonization

29. He was to return to Heaven (Ps lxvii:34) and was to sit on the right hand of God (Ps cix:1).

30. His Doctrine was to spread from Jerusalem and from Mount Sion over the whole world (Joel ii:28, Is ii:3).  The hall of the Last Supper, where the apostles received the Holy Ghost, was situated on Mount Sion.

31.  The Heathen nations of the whole earth were to be received into His kingdom, and to adore Him (Ps xxi:28-9).

32. The Jewish people, who had put the Messias to death, were to be severely punished, and scattered over the face of the earth (Deut xxviii:64).  The city of Jerusalem was destroyed as well as the Temple; the Jewish sacrifices and the Jewish priesthood were to cease, and the Temple was never to be rebuilt, until the last days (Dan ix:26-7, Osee iii:4).

33. In every place throughout the world, a “clean oblation” (holy Mass) was to be offered to Him (Mal i:11).

34. He will one day judge all men (Ps cix:6).  Before the Day of Judgment Elias will be again sent on the earth (Mal iv:5).

————-The End————–

Actually, some of the above cover more than one prophecy in each item.  The real number is probably closer to 40, and that is probably far from all a strong biblical exegete could come up with.

Note also the repudiation of the Jews and their former covenant implicit in the above.  That’s a serious argument against must modern interreligious dialogue, but even more, the alterations made even to the Missal of 1962 by recent Popes.  It is a travesty, in my mind, to alter the Liturgy given us as the product of divine inspiration and the toil of too many Saints to count for such worldly ends.  It also codifies something of a falsehood in the Mass itself, that the Jews are not rejected by God until their conversion near the end of the world, and that their old covenant could somehow still be operative.  Even Pope Benedict fell into that ecumenical trap.

I pray you find the above useful!  Something to keep in your back pocket.

 

GOP frontrunner Trump reveals again there is no political solution to this country’s decay July 20, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, disconcerting, Ecumenism, General Catholic, paganism, rank stupidity, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society.
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By frontrunner, I don’t mean he’s necessarily #1, but one of those polling best right now.

I know Trump has some appealing aspects, but he’s also very far from a conservative. He’s a rabid pro-abort, long-time Clinton supporter, generally very left-wing on all social issues, and thoroughly vainglorious.

He was invited to a social conservative forum in Iowa (which is one of the least representative states in the union, and, along with New Hampshire, has no business having such an outsized influence on the nomination process) and revealed what I believe has to be considered rank ignorance of any kind of relationship with God in his response.  If one does not acknowledge personal sin or need for forgiveness, what on earth did Jesus Christ die for?  I tend to imagine he is another unchurched coastal elitist who feels themselves very much beyond any need for a personal relationship with Jesus Christ or God.  Some of his responses below indicate a a probability that he finds god in himself:

“Have you ever asked God for forgiveness?”  Answer: No, I don’t think so.

“When I do something wrong, I just try and make it right.  I don’t think I bring ‘God’ into that picture.”

Once again, the very essence of Christianity is that Jesus Christ made eternal salvation possible for all of us by dying for our sins.  Even a Calvinist knows that they are to have at least internal contrition for their sins.

Referring to Communion – even in a Presbyterian context – as “drinking my little wine and eating my little cracker” is to me flippant and even tending towards disrespectful.  Following that up with “I do that as often as possible because I feel cleansed” was to me a panic line made when he realized he was failing badly, and had probably tipped his hand too much with the crack about Communion.

He consistently ignores the meaning of the question, segueing into topics he apparently finds more comforting.  He then makes the now pretty well known and roundly condemned statement regarding John McCain’s military service.  I’ll just skip that particular bit of political theater.

Trump is probably a tempest in a teapot who is enjoying this additional PR and will probably be gone from the race by March of next year.  But he is emblematic of a field – from both major parties – that is as problematic as it is likely to be ineffectual.  This country is really beyond personal salvation.  I do not know how we can expect a population as increasingly amoral and separated from God(more, contrary to God) to elect moral and virtuous leadership.  More and more, it seems to make very little difference which party holds office, the same policies are enacted, the culture continues to decay, debt continues to accumulate, and souls fall into perdition.

I don’t say this to be cynical, but realist. At the state and local level, depending on where you’re at, involvement in politics can still result in some good being done.  I think Texas is one state in particular where this is possible.  But at the federal level, it seems self-interest, the power of lobbyists, the amount of money thrown around, and the allurements of power, sex, pride, etc. all tend to make service at the federal level all-corrupting for even relatively good, solid, conservative men.  I was reading yesterday about how Barry Goldwater – Mr. Conservative himself, the man who found in Eisenhower an intolerable leftist! – gradually fell to the progressive zeitgeist dominant in Washington DC over the course of his several decades in office.  He is hardly the first, or last.  Orrin Hatch, when first elected in the late 70s used to be the stuff of progressive nightmares, now he is thoroughly squishy, and very much wealthier than when he entered office.  Chuck Grassley, Pat Roberts, John Thune, Richard Shelby all seem much less conservative than they once were, and even the usually reliable Tom Coburn turned squishy at the end.

A largely godless and immoral constituency cannot be expected to elect moral, God-fearing (let alone Catholic) leadership.  That’s a prime reason why I think this nation’s current political construct will not be able to stand.

But when we dream about Texas Independence, can we really believe that things would be any different?

Men’s Prayer Vigil outside ‘The Men’s Club’ this FRIDAY 07/17 @ 8:30p July 15, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, Dallas Diocese, Ecumenism, family, General Catholic, manhood, secularism, sexual depravity, Society, Tradition, Virtue.
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This week’s prayer vigil will be a bit different.  We discussed this on the 1st and decided a mid-month prayer vigil should be held on FRIDAY, and not Wednesday.  So this week’s is at Friday at 8:30, same place as noted below. I pray I see you there. We are most certainly starting to make a difference!  We are getting hostile/fearful reactions from the denizens of the sexually oriented business (SOB).

Thank you all for your continued support, both those who attend, and those who keep us going with your prayers from afar.

I will be praying outside  The Men’s Club, 2340 W. Northwest Hwy, Dallas, on FRIDAY, July 17 @ 8:30 pm.  I will actually be across the street in the parking lot of the US Post Office.  This is directly across from the entrance to the inappropriately named “gentleman’s club.”  

We’ve had some good turnout.  I pray all of you are able to come back out this time.

The post office parking lot is well lit and set back some distance from the very busy roadway.  It is public land so we cannot be harassed for being there.  It’s really an ideal situation, we are basically impossible to miss by patrons leaving this sexually oriented business (SOB).  Men over 18 only.  All men are welcome.  You don’t have to be a member of a particular parish.  I will stay for at least an hour, maybe an hour and a half, depending on how many show up.

No protesting, just prayer.  No interaction with the patrons at this time.  That may come later.  We’ll see.  Of course, recently we have had some interaction we did not seek. If that happens again, please keep praying and I will try to engage with whomever approaches us.

This is a small way to push back against the culture of license, perversion, and death.  Maybe it’s even a way to get that canonized “smell of the sheep” we hear so much about.

OH, and we have priests praying for us now, as well.  They are most gratified with our efforts, and will bring an added level of spiritual armor to our battle array.  We might even be joined by a priest at some point.

Deo Gratias!

Funny pic, and the destructiveness of ecumenism July 10, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, disaster, Ecumenism, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Papa, sadness, scandals, secularism, Society, the return.
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Reader D sent me this…….yeah, I think this is probably about dead on:

eow

Speaking of the end of the world, staring mouths agape while Christ descends in His glory, would most souls even think to go to their knees and beg forgiveness in His Name?  I think all those “rapture” evangelicals are going to be in for a very big surprise when they aren’t immediately taken up to Heaven as they expect.

You know where I live there is a huge Hispanic population…..probably 2/3 or more.  And I have to guess that at least half are protestant or pagan, because there is only one Catholic parish that caters to that entire population in Irving (we’re talking probably 80,000 people, at least), and there are literally dozens of little sect houses around, ranging from tiny house churches to others that draw a couple thousand.  A lot of businesses are Hispanic owned and many of them are devout and display elements of their belief,  usually protestant fundamentalist.

References to the “rapture” abound in these displays.  These are signs or posters in Spanish intended for Hispanics. I’ve seen in several local businesses a large poster that depicts the “rapture” and takes a number of gratuitous shots at the Church.  If you understand the idea behind the “rapture,” it’s that “born again” protestants will be whisked away to Heaven while the rest of us poor “unsaved” souls are left here to face all manner of calamities.  So what do these posters show?  Catholic priests and religious and lay people “left behind,” rejected by God with our false pieties displeasing to God, while planes are crashing, volcanoes exploding, tidal waves are smashing, etc., etc.  It’s a very clever bit of propaganda aimed at slamming the Church and reaffirming the converted Hispanics in their sects.

That’s how our protestant “friends” do ecumenism, which is why they’ve lured tens of millions of American Catholics away over the past several decades.  While our Church continues to play secular patty-cake with their leaders, those leaders are implementing powerful means to steal Catholics from the bosom of Christ’s Church.  That’s one of my greatest annoyances with post-conciliar ecumenism – the fact that Church leaders are so gosh-darned earnest about it all and really believe in it, while the protestants (especially those evangelicals Pope Francis has recently lionized) most often are not.  My perception is that they often use so-called ecumenism to defuse Catholic defenses to protestant predation at the official level, while at the grass-roots they ramp up their efforts to pick off naive nominal Catholics even more.  That was my experience, anyway.

I know a lot of sects view converting Catholics as about their highest priority.  One major reason for that is they view uncatechized Catholics as such easy prey, which, they generally are.   Thus recent very publicized events which show even the highest levels of the Church appearing to put protestants on the same level, and providing them with enormous moral prestige, are profoundly destructive.  It seems like each ecumenical “advance” is paid for by  souls falling away.

Sorry, rambling.

 

CHICOM party demands Catholics undergo reeducation July 9, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Ecumenism, episcopate, General Catholic, Holy suffering, martyrdom, persecution, scandals, secularism, Society.
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Lovely.  Surely another of the manifold benefits of socialism playing out before our eyes.

The article below gives a pretty good idea of how a modern socialist government treats its Catholic citizens.  Pretty good lesson for all of us (my emphasis and comments):

The Communist government of Shanghai has mandated that Catholic priests and nuns of the diocese undergo “reeducation” classes on the central theme of the National Congress of the Communist Party.

The Catholic Church has been a terrible embarrassment to Shanghai ever since a newly ordained bishop abruptly quit the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association in 2012, snubbing the Communist party in allegiance to Rome. The new reeducation classes are part of an ongoing punishment of the Church in retaliation for the bishop’s act.

When a priest named Thaddeus Ma Daqin was ordained a bishop in 2012, the ruling Communist body decided to install him, one of its own officials, as auxiliary bishop in China’s largest Catholic diocese.

“The anticipation was he would be a yes man,” said Father Jim Mulroney, the editor of the Hong Kong-based Sunday Examiner.

Ma surpised everyone, however, by announcing before an immense crowd of Catholics and government officials at Saint Ignatius Cathedral, that it wouldn’t be “convenient” for him to remain in the Patriotic Association. People responded by bursting into spontaneous applause. Some wept openly. [Given what so many faithful Catholics there have suffered, I can see why.  Shades of Saint Thomas Beckett!  Think on how this man has behaved, compared to so many Western bishops.  He knew he would face imprisonment or death for his act, and yet he did it anyway.  I’m afraid my faith that a Dolan or Gomez would do the same is pretty near nil]

The new bishop was immediately placed in detention, stripped of his title, interrogated by officials for weeks, and made to attend communist indoctrination classes.

Priests and nuns in Shanghai diocese have been required to attend learning classes ever since. Some 30 priests and a dozen nuns enrolled in this summer’s program held June 9-11 at the Shanghai Institute of Socialism. There will be another class in September for the rest of the priests and nuns of the diocese……….

………This year’s program focuses on the topic of rule of law as articulated by the Fourth Plenary Session of the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party. The June course offered classes on the “rule of law and the development of the China Catholic Church” and “the current situation of the China Church and its mission.”

“It’s just a big joke to have such a theme. We have to ask what law leads to the indefinite detention of our bishop on no charges,” an unnamed participant told UCANews. [God bless this faithful soul]

Since 1958 China’s Catholic Church has been split into underground and open communities, with the latter going by the title of the Patriotic Catholic Association and having direct ties to the Communist party. A Vatican document of 1988 barred Roman Catholics from participating in the sacraments of the Patriotic Church, noting that it had issued a proclamation saying the church “had broken all relationships with the pope” and would be “under the direct control of the government.”…..

……Earlier this year, Beijing baited the Vatican by announcing its intention to ordain Catholic bishops without the Pope’s approval. In January, the State Administration for Religious Affairs (SARA) launched its work plan for 2015 that includes new ordinations without papal mandate. As recently as last November, Beijing had expressed a willingness to compromise on the ordination question, but seems to have withdrawn from that position.

A cynic might ask whether they were really baiting, or whether they had gotten back-channel communications that said now was a very propitious time to advance their little man-created “patriotic” church?  I’ll let you ruminate on that.

The Church has lived through even more brutal persecutions than the nearly 70 year one the Chinese communists have been conducting.  But the Chinese one is quite thorough and has really succeeded in driving much of the real Church underground – another interesting element to consider as we see a Remnant of faithful Catholics and a sudden resurgence of the revolutionary element within the Church Herself.  The Chinese Catholics have managed to keep their faith and even grow a bit by communication and security.  They and other faithful Christians have a pretty good underground network.  Something to think about.

If you want to help the Chinese Catholics, please consider supporting the Cardinal Kung Foundation.  This is really the only orthodox group providing aid to Chinese Catholics I would even consider.  Most others cooperate at least to some degree with the so-called patriotic church, while others are simply problematic in their own right, such as the Aid to the Church in Need. Cardinal Kung Foundation is also quite anti-communist, as, I think, any faithful Church organization must be.

Not that our leadership is always clear on that point.

Strange portent: Pope Francis to be tried by reconstituted Sanhedrin July 9, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in disconcerting, Ecumenism, episcopate, foolishness, General Catholic, history, Papa, persecution, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, the return.
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I think I’ve made my concerns over Pope Francis quite plain.  I have reservations over the normalization of relations between the Holy See and the Palestinian state, which certainly does contain within its boundaries a number of Christians, but which also happens to be one of the most maniacally islamist states in the world today.  It is a profoundly pathological state, where children are indoctrinated from infancy to hate and kill the Jew.

Nevertheless, I have to wonder if the members of this reconstituted Sanhedrin in Israel comprehend the symbolism of their action, and I also have to wonder what portent it means, if any, for our times.  Here you have the same body that condemned God Himself to death, and death on a cross, getting ready to try, in absentia, Christ’s Vicar on earth and the head of His Mystical Body.  This is spectacularly symbolic, and also more than a bit disconcerting for its eschatological elements.

A re-established and self declared Israeli Sanhedrin, the religious High Court composed of 71 sages, has declared that it is putting Pope Francis on trial unless he retracts his statement that the Jews have no right to the land of Israel or to Jerusalem.

In February 2013, the Vatican officially recognized the “State of Palestine” but more significantly, the Vatican signed a treaty in June with “Palestine” in which the Holy See switched its diplomatic relations from the Palestinian Liberation Organization to the “State of Palestine”. This treaty is the first legal document negotiated between the Holy See and the Palestinian state and as such, constitutes an official recognition.

The trial and judgment will be on September 20th, 2015. If Pope Francis chooses to ignore the summons, he will be judged in absentia.

The Sanhedrin sent a letter to Pope Francis in reaction to the Vatican’s recent support of the Palestinian Authority’s unilateral moves to declare themselves a nation, reported the Hebrew magazine Matzav Haruach on June 24.

The letter stated: [I’ll skip most of it, and only quote its most ludicrous claim]

These actions, to our great dismay, are consistent with a long series of actions and stances that are as in the days of the Roman Catholic Religion, that swore to persecute Israel because we refused to accept their Messiah as the Messiah of Israel, and to renounce our faith.[Excuse me, who persecuted who?  For the first 300 years of the Christian Faith, it was Jews persecuting Christians, and not the other way around.  Even after the destruction of the temple (obliterating the Jewish religion as it had always been constituted and making plain God’s abolishment of the Old Covenant), this persecution continued. Yes in later years Christians have persecuted Jews but so have Jews at times persecuted Christians, and there are many who feel today that Israel continues to be a hostile place for Christians, as does Israel’s conduct in the West Bank.  Neither side has covered itself in glory, but I certainly pray for the conversion of  all the Jews to the Faith of Jesus Christ]  The recent announcements and actions of the Vatican are a rebuke to the Jewish Nation and to the Bible, which you use to interpret the prophecies, as if God has abandoned his original Nation of Israel. Reality has proven the opposite to be true.

I’ve often said of inter-religious dialogue and ecumenism generally, it is an impossibility, because an “advance” with one religion must irrefutably mean an equal “setback” with another sect.  It’s a fool’s game that drives the Church towards the lowest of common denominators and the most generic, worldly of beliefs.  In order for this dialogue to succeed, true faith and doctrine must be jettisoned in favor of feel-good secularist sentimentality and a totally bland, indifferent world view.  It is the death of true faith.

I quote Tancred from Eponymous Flower now: “It is a pity that the Holy Father will not outrage these people further by praying explicitly and in public that they acknowledge the Lord Jesus to be their Messiah and the Savior of all men.”

Indeed. Even more’s the pity that even Pope Benedict XVI was a slave to this worldly “dialogue” and further modified the Missal of ’62 to strip out the Good Friday prayers concerning the perfidious Jews.  Fortunately my ’45 Saint Andrew Missal still has the old words, and that is what I pray.  Ever since Vatican II and the very, very problematic Nostra Aetate the Church has almost totally abrogated Her solemn duty to bring ALL souls to Christ, yes including those in other religions who may have a powerful lobby and who can make things unpleasant if you do not toe their line.  We’ve seen the tragic spectacle of the highest Churchmen for years declaring that Jews didn’t necessarily need conversion, still had a clear path to salvation, and that their Old Covenant was still in effect!  PBXVI declared all of those, and more.

Which simply cannot be true, and which also contradicts our Blessed Lord’s very words repeated throughout the Gospels.  “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through Me.”  “He that believeth in the Son, hath life everlasting; but he that believeth not the Son, shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.”  “Unless you eat my flesh and drink my blood you will not have life within you.”

Our Lord, and Church prior to ~1900, could not have been more clear. If you do not believe in Jesus Christ you cannot be saved, period, end of sentence.  You might be invincibly ignorant of Jesus Christ but know Him through the natural law and whatever Grace God made available to save you, but, in reality, such people were (and are?) incredibly rare.  It is doubtful there are hardly any alive today who are not aware of the Person of Jesus Christ and His claims. Being aware of those claims, they have a solemn duty to investigate them, which investigation should naturally lead to their conversion and visible communion with the Church Christ founded.  Investigation and rejection of the Truth of Jesus Christ would be very, very bad.

And yet today our Church positively confirms people in their erroneous sects and false religions.  How long, Lord?

Grrrr as a convert do I hate ecumenism!  I have a strong sensus fidei that it is evil and worldly and should be abolished.

Chair of katholyc Fordham U theology department fake marries another man….. July 6, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, disaster, Ecumenism, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, horror, paganism, Papa, persecution, secularism, self-serving, sexual depravity, sickness, Society, unadulterated evil.
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……Cardinal Dolan yawns, does nothing, university praises his actions.  He was “wed” in an episcopal church, which church just contradicted their long-promised stand of never actually “sacramentally marrying” people of the same-sex, while holding out some similar ceremony of “union.”  That stand didn’t even persist for a week after the apparently all-knowing, all-powerful Supreme Court decision.  More on that in a bit, including my prediction for the future of the Episcopal Church, USA.  But first, the sodomite theology chair:

The chairman of the theology department at Fordham University has gotten married—to another man.

The New York Times, which up until a few years ago, declined running wedding announcements involving same-sex couples, reported that J. Patrick Hornbeck II “married” Patrick Anthony Bergquist Saturday at St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church in Manhattan. The ceremony took place June 27, just a day after the US Supreme Court legalized same-sex “marriage” nationwide. That would not have been necessary legally, since New York State has allowed gay “marriage” since 2011. But the ceremony was conducted before the Episcopal Church in America voted this week to allow same-sex “marriage” rites in its churches.

When asked whether Fordham was concerned about having a professor of theology whose lifestyle choice is in opposition to the teaching of the Catholic Church about marriage, a spokesman for the university said Hornbeck has the right to get married. [That does not answer the question.  Fordham is in NYC. Cardinal Dolan reported he was positively giddy over the marriage, and couldn’t wait to clap Hornbeck on the back with his bear paw and say “good for you!”]

“While Catholic teachings do not support same-sex marriage, we wish Professor Hornbeck and his spouse a rich life filled with many blessings on the occasion of their wedding in the Episcopal Church,” said Bob Howe, Fordham’s senior director of communications. “Professor Hornbeck is a member of the Fordham community, and like all University employees, students and alumni, is entitled to human dignity without regard to race, creed, gender, and sexual orientation.” [First of all, getting “married” outside the Church used to be grounds for excommunication, removal of which was reserved to the Sovereign Pontiff.  Secondly, he’s double-excommunicate by publicly declaring his support for the evil of sodomy.  But the hard-hearted PR man ignored the real question and gave public scandal for the 50,000th time by playing up this grave offense against God and nature.]

Howe emphasized that same-sex unions are “now the law of the land, and Professor Hornbeck has the same constitutional right to marriage as all Americans.” [As I said, they will never tire of throwing this in our faces, as if a national law somehow has any bearing on the solemn Doctrine of the Faith.]

…….In 2014, Hornbeck participated in a symposium at Fordham titled “Who Am I to Judge? How Pope Francis Is Changing the Church.”…….

“American Catholics and their church have not been on the same page for some time,” said Hornbeck. “But now the pope is opening up space for dialogue.”…….[Enjoy your dialogue while it lasts.  I pray for your conversion, you can dialogue until your last breath but then you will face He Who will have no care for your self-serving sophistries, save for how they wounded His Body, the Church.]

As to the Episcopalians, via LifeSiteNews, the folly of collegiality and “democratic governance” revealed:

The bishops of the U.S. Episcopal Church gave the green light last week for clergy to perform same-sex “weddings,” in a heavily-debated fundamental change set to come in the door incrementally.

As of November 1 of this year homosexual couples will have the right to be “married” in the church, the result of new liturgies for same-sex couples approved Wednesday at the denomination’s General Convention in Salt Lake City. [Well we can see from the above some just couldn’t even wait that further 4 months]

The bishops also accepted changing the church’s canons (rules) governing marriage, to make them gender neutral, thus replacing the terms “man and woman” with “couple.” [You hate filled bigots, you make me sense!  Who are you to deny marriage to a thruple, or quadruple, or any random group of people who exchange bodily fluids in a soiree that has even the demons blushing?]

Episcopal clergy however, will be allowed to refuse to perform a homosexual “marriage” with the promise they would not be penalized, and individual bishops were also given the right to refuse to allow same-sex ceremonies to take place in their diocese. [This won’t last 3 years]

The compromise is angering Episcopalians on both sides of the issue, with liberal factions potentially trying to block the plan and insist on the immediate introduction of same-sex “marriage” with no way for dioceses to opt out, and conservatives likely to reach out to overseas leaders in the wider Anglican Communion for help in getting the church to stop.

My prediction: the sect that calls itself the Episcopal Church USA will split and resplit and cease to exist, for all practical purposes, within the next 10 years or so.  It already barely exists, with the median Sunday attendance less than 100 in its churches, but the older liberal membership is rapidly dying off, or simply losing interest, while the relatively few conservatives who remain are finally facing the reality that whatever hopes they held that the Episcopal Church might come back to its senses are increasingly forlorn.  In trying to please everyone and always be right at the cutting edge of the leftist zeitgeist, they’re losing everyone.

However, if you recall, Pope Francis, while still Cardinal Jorge, deplored Anglicanorum Coetibus and the Ordinariate, complaining to the local Anglican (ahem) bishop in Buenos Aires how wrong-headed it was to try to bring souls into the Church Christ founded.  Soooo…….we’ve got that going for us.

Whither heresy? Pope begs forgiveness of Waldensian sect June 22, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, disaster, Ecumenism, episcopate, error, General Catholic, Papa, pr stunts, sadness, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, the struggle for the Church.
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If one judged by the actions of two of the three most recent popes, one would have to conclude that opposing heresy even to the point of violence is always wrong, and that the Church has almost always erred in “doing so,” or supporting the secular power in doing so.  So was it wrong to repress a noxious heresy that posited only two Sacraments and led hundreds of thousands if not millions astray?  Or was it wrong to excommunicate prelates who explicitly rejected the Primacy of Peter, or who embraced any of a number of errors in protestantism?

Eliot Bougis claims this is a sterling example of everything wrong with Dignitatis Humanae.  I would have a hard time arguing with that:

Pope Francis met on Monday with members of the Waldensian movement, an ecclesial community which suffered persecution from Catholic authorities from the 12th to 17th centuries. He apologized for the Church’s “non-Christian attitudes and behavior” towards the Waldensians during that period.

“Reflecting on the history of our relations, we can only grieve in the face of strife and violence committed in the name of faith, and ask the Lord to give us us the grace to recognize we are all sinners, and to know how to forgive one another,” the Pope said June 22 at a Waldensian temple in Turin. [But such a view can only be posited if one believes in universal salvation, can it not?  Or nearly universal?  Otherwise, allowing souls to remain in errors that deny them salvation would be an evil even greater, far greater, than whatever violence committed in the name of the Church the Pope has in mind?]

“I ask forgiveness for the non-Christian – even inhuman – attitudes and behaviors which, through history, we have had against you. In Jesus Christ’s name, forgive us!” [This is incredibly dangerous.  So Pope Francis has now, rhetorically, at least, “excommunicated” popes, bishops, and Saints of the past for their part in repressing this heresy, among others.  So popes (and others) are allowed to excoriate previous popes, but we can’t critically examine the actions of the current one?  What is the time limit on the embargo of papal criticism?  Is it simply when the “old beliefs” fall out of fashion, then it’s open season?]

Monday’s encounter marks the first meeting between a Pope and the Waldensian community. Founded in Lyon in the late twelfth century, it is currently centered in Italy’s Piedmont region, which Pope Francis visited June 21-22.

The movement was founded by Peter Waldo, and embraced evangelical poverty and lay preaching, and believed there were only two sacraments. The movement’s ideas were condemned as early as the Third Lateran Council, in 1179. Beginning in the early 1200s, many Waldensians were executed on account of heresy. [By the secular authority, not the Church, do note.  The Church desires not the death of the sinner, but that he be converted and live. But when some persist in formal heresy for a protracted period of time, and do grave damage to souls, it is not entirely surprising that the secular authority would take this step in a rightly ordered concern for souls and to maintain the public order]

…….Pope Francis told the community, “On behalf of the Catholic Church, I ask for your forgiveness.” [I just cannot stand all these apologias.  They are meaningless PR events and I have a very difficult time not seeing them as simply self-serving grandstanding]

During the meeting, the Roman Pontiff praised  ecumenical advancements which have been made among those united in baptism and belief in Christ. [I wonder just how united in belief in Christ we really are, and is that not the core of the problem?]

“This tie is not based on simple human criteria, but on the radical sharing of founding experience of Christian life: the encounter with the love of God who reveals to us Jesus, and the transformative action of the Holy Spirit who helps us on life’s journey.” [But Holy Father, did you not also say that muslims have no need to convert and have their own path to salvation, separate from that through Jesus Christ?]

Pope Francis noted that this communion “is still on a journey, which, with prayer, with continual personal and communal conversion, and with the help of the theologians, [ominous?]  we hope, trusting in the action of the Holy Spirit, can become full and visible communion in truth and charity.”

He added that unity, as a fruit of the Holy Spirit, is not the same as uniformity. [Yes, but “unity” is also a heckuva lot more than shared baptism, isn’t it?  What happens when the first mortal sin is committed by a non-Catholic who has no conception of perfect contrition and no recourse to sacramental Confession?  Are they still “united?”]

“In fact, our brethren are united by a common origin but are not identical to one another.”

The Holy Father cited the scriptures, which speak of different charisms and gifts.

However, wars often break out when these do not accept these differences of others, he said. [They break out because words and beliefs MEAN THINGS, and wrong belief, the Church has known for 2000 years, in matters of Dogma is a matter affecting SALVATION.]

Pope Francis thanked God that the relationship between Catholics and Waldensians continue today to be ever more rooted in “mutual respect and fraternal charity.”……..

………There are various areas where the Church and the Waldensians could work together, he said, one being evangelization. [So how does that work…..when the Church and Waldensians hold mutually exclusive beliefs?  And why are we exerting so much effort over a tiny sect when millions fall away from the Church every year?]

………Pope Francis concluded by saying a“new way of unity begins with seeing the “grandeur of our shared faith and life in Christ and the Holy Spirit,” before taking into account the differences which exist.

How long, and to what extent, do we bask in this grandeur before we can take into account the differences? And how many souls get lost in the interim.  The Waldensians are a small sect.  In the grand scheme of things they don’t amount to much. But there are other, far larger sects that gobble up millions of souls a year -the longer we bask, the more souls fall away.

There is a horrible conceit that troubles our times, one that is rooted in modernism and libertine ideas inherited from the endarkenment.  That conceit is that we are oh-so-much smarter and more sensitive than our forebears.  I don’t think that is true at all.  I think in fact we are a lot dumber than our forebears.

In all these apologias – and Pope Francis is not the first pope to make them, though they were unheard of prior to 1980 – this conceit is, I think, operative.  Also operative is a kind of indifference that is really appalling.  What is being implied is that people in the way back were just really awful, bloodthirsty, war-mongering people, people who just wanted to kill others more or less for sport, or for power, or whatever base reason.  Of course, we are so much above that, we just have to condemn our lamentable forerunners in the Faith, including some notable popes and Saints (Saint Dominic was very involved in the crushing of the Albigensian heresy, including its more martial aspects).

But what if there really are – as the Church infallibly believes – errors that are so severe and noxious they literally cut you off from salvation if you knowingly profess them?  What if these errors are clever and pernicious and become widely accepted?  What if millions of people put their eternal souls in danger through these errors?  And if you really do, as the Church used to, at least until ~1958, believe that this life is short, and that eternity is forever, and that God really does condemn people to hell, and not just a few, but a whole bunch of them (the Exodus from Egypt being the type for our sojourn on earth, with only 2 out of 600,000 Israeli men making it to the Promised Land)…….what lengths would  you not go to prevent souls from falling into hell?  Given fervent belief in the danger of heresy and the reality of damnation (just as real a fact today as it was in 1179), could you not even reasonably conclude that in some situations, in order to prevent souls from suffering in hell for all eternity, it might even be preferable to put to death a relatively few, as St. Ephraem said earlier today, incorrigibly corrupted, heretical people to death in order to keep many more from falling into errors that will lead to their eternal destruction?

Well, that is exactly how the Church always thought and reasoned, until the last few years, anyways, before gaining the approval of the world trumped the good of souls in the post-conciliar Church.  Would anyone like to argue that point, that to a marked degree, the approval of the world is the guiding concern for most leadership in the Church over the past several decades, the good of souls be damned, so to speak?  And isn’t universal salvation, then, quite a handy little thing to trot out when explaining the dichotomy that exists between the behavior of the Church that was, and the Church that is?

In comparison to the belief and practice to the Church as it existed for over 1900 years, the modern ecumenical approach is so divorced from true charity for souls that it would have scandalized to their core so many pious souls, good priests, dutiful bishops, and great Saints of the past. Is the modern ecumenical movement really grounded in love for souls, or in love for the world?

I really should send a letter to Pope Francis asking him if I made a mistake in becoming Catholic.

But you know what, I don’t think I need to……..I’m quite sure I know what answer he would give, if he would respond.  Much more importantly, however, I know I did NOT make a mistake, it was the best thing I could have ever done, and I pray I shall never waver in that belief.

Battle of Vienna, with glaring errors and atrocious CGI June 22, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Ecumenism, family, foolishness, Glory, history, manhood, persecution, Spiritual Warfare, Tradition, true leadership, Victory.
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The older I get, the more I hate CGI movies. I watched Aliens twice over the 3 day weekend, and save for some blue screen shots of aerial scenes, every single bit of that movie stands out as being more realistic and convincing than even the best CGI ever done, and by a wide margin.  I don’t like James Cameron personally, but Aliens was a triumph of art direction, special effects, costumes, and everything else that creates a believable world.  You can argue about the merits of the story told all you want, but I don’t think the fact that it was a technical triumph can be disputed.

Last year, I did a post about a new Polish movie that told the tale of the Second Siege of Vienna (1683).  I didn’t know much about it then, only that it had a scene of the awesome charge of the Polish winged hussars.  That movie (Day of the Siege, 2012) was just becoming available in the US at that time.  Someone has uploaded more extensive scenes from the movie to Youtube, and here they are, in their, ahem, glory:

Pluses:

The movie is respectful of the Church
The movie makes clear that this was a fight not between rival secular powers, but all about religion, and the true Faith.
The film makes clear there was a definite moral difference between Christianity and islam.  One is a religion of peace and love that will fight if it has to, the other is a religion of war and subjugation that tolerates peace when it has to.
F. Murray Abraham is in it
The charge of the winged hussars is awesome and quite well done. It mixes in some live action, thank goodness
There are a few other compelling action scenes
The movie seems to convey a supernatural element to the Christian victory

Minuses:

Production values are atrocious.  I’m sorry, the CGI is incredibly fake looking and abysmal.  I would say that the family made Navis Pictures have quite superior production values, and I cut them a huge amount of slack because they are just a good homeschooling family making deliberately inexpensive Catholic films.
Some glaring errors: Turkey did not exist in 1683.  It was the Ottoman Empire.  Constantinople’s name was not changed until after WWI in the fall of the Ottoman Empire and its replacement by the modern Turkish state.
The monk played by F. Murray Abraham uses a ferula exactly like the hideous, radioactively ugly one of Paul VI/JPII/Pope Francis.  Modernist art in 1683?
The acting is generally of a low standard
The script leaves much to be desired
There is quite a bit of gore.  Probably not suitable for kids.

The movie was made in Poland in 2012.  It came to the North American market last year.  If you really want to see islam get crushed and aren’t particular about production values, then go crazy.  I don’t think I’ll be buying this one, as intensely interested as I am in the subject matter, and no matter how much I’d like to see the largest heavy cavalry charge in history…….but done right.  So I think I’ll skip this one.

A final thought…..Prussian military theorist Carl von Clausewitz said that war is politics by other means.  I would say that prayer is warfare by other means……but could the reverse hold true?  Warfare, conducted lawfully and with the support of the Church, is prayer by other means?  “There is no greater love than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends?”  Our Lord never indicates He is a pacifist, or even hates war.  He has in fact positively encouraged it at times.  Our Lord incarnate Jesus Christ famously took a whip to the moneychangers in the temple.

Just a random thought.

Pat Archbold, the SSPX, the hermeneutic of continuity, and the Pope June 11, 2015

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, Ecumenism, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Papa, scandals, secularism, SOD, SSPX, the return, the struggle for the Church, Tradition, Virtue.
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This may be getting a bit old now, but Pat Archbold wrote a piece for The Remnant  a week ago that I think expresses my own views towards the Society of Saint Pius X as well as any I’ve seen (and probably better than I’ve been able to formulate).  I have gotten some grief for not coming down as hard on the Society as some would like.  But just yesterday, I got a very nice compliment from a woman (thanks, K) who reads this blog and agrees with my approach to this subject.  And so this seemingly irreconcilable matters continues apace.  I have always felt that each side talks past the other, with each possessing arguments the other side cannot refute: yes the SSPX is in an irregular canonical situation and yes the validity of their faculties/jurisdiction are at least highly debatable, but on the other hand the SSPX is quite right in pointing out that there are elements in the Council and post-conciliar doctrinal approaches which are extremely difficult to reconcile with the Church’s 2000 year perennial belief, and that a crisis has afflicted the Church, almost unprecedented in its severity, precisely due to those novelties.

But Mr. Archbold says it much better than I (my emphasis and comments):

But another more surprising group regularly engages in vehement criticism of the SSPX. These are Catholics who embrace the hermeneutic of continuity. They understand that the Church is 2,000 years old and cannot ever contradict her own teaching, that proper worship is critically important, and regularly pray with beads in a pre-1965 manner.In fairness, many of these Catholics looked upon the 1988 episcopal consecrations without papal mandate of Archbishop Lefebvre as a grave act of disobedience and a “schismatic act.” Whether or not you accept Archbishop Lefebvre’s justification for the act, one must recognize the great danger to unity that this act engendered.  

Before I move on, let me be clear that I have never assisted mass at an SSPX chapel………I was and am that concerned about unity and obedience.[I not only have never set foot in an SSPX chapel, I’ve never even seen one from a distance.  I guess I trump Mr. Archbold, then……heh]

At the same time, it does nothing to diminish the seriousness of Archbishop Lefebvre’s actions to acknowledge that I would likely not even have had the option of a diocesan-approved traditional mass were it not for Archbishop Lefebvre and the SSPX. In fact, there might not have even been an SSPX hadn’t the Church in large part acted most ungenerously toward those rightfully attached to tradition…..
Further, it is almost undoubtedly true that we would not have had Summorum Pontificum were it not for the stalwartness SSPX and the intransigent and ungenerous response of most Bishop’s to Pope St. John Paul’s call for a “generous response of Bishops towards the “legitimate aspirations” of the faithful.” [I agree with all these points. I am convinced that, humanly speaking, without the SSPX, the TLM would not be present now, and powerful forces would exist to prevent it from ever being offered again.  The “abrogation” of Paul VI would remain now and into the foreseeable future. I also know that groups like the FSSP and IBP would not exist were it not for the SSPX.]
Yet, as a consequence of episcopal consecrations, Pope John Paull II excommunicated Archbishop Lefebvre and the four new Bishops. For years, many hermeneutic of continuity type Catholics cited this excommunication as the principle or sole reason to view the entirety of the SSPX in schism, even though the Church herself never formally declared them to be so.But this is all a moot point now as Pope Benedict lifted these excommunications in 2009. All that remains is for the Church to grant the SSPX a proper canonical standing.   In no way do I wish to minimize the seriousness of the situation the SSPX is currently in or the necessity of proper faculties for distribution of the sacraments. But yet, among many Catholics who embrace the hermeneutic of continuity, their vehemence in declaring the SSPX in schism has remained and in some cases increased.   But only doctrinal issues remain unresolved before the SSPX preventing proper canonical standing. [I do think the SSPX has become something of a cross between a boogeyman and punching bag.  There are certainly valid criticisms to make and concerns to raise, but much of the rhetoric directed at the SSPX is even more inflamed and over the top than that directed at the modernist wreckovators.  Divining motives is always dicey, and probably improper, but this opprobrium seems to have some deep psychological motivations.]

But among those who thoroughly embrace a hermeneutic of continuity we continue to see a sweaty vehemence among some declaring the SSPX in schism. With the excommunications lifted, they declare the “doctrinal issues” between the Church and the SSPX to now be the great divide.

All acknowledge a divide between the SSPX and the Church on how to express the immutable truths declared by the Church. Yet, truth requires context.

The SSPX acknowledge the Second Vatican Council as a legitimate council. They also agree that large parts of the documents of Vatican II fairly state perennial Catholic teaching. But there are certain documents and certain parts of documents that do not obviously express continuous Catholic teaching, particularly in the areas of ecumenism, religious liberty, and collegiality. [Yes, indeed]

Implicitly acknowledged by all who promote a “hermeneutic of continuity” is that the Council’s writings do not obviously or easily reconcile with prior magisterium on these topics. Otherwise, why would promotion of such a hermeneutical lens even be necessary? [There are certainly arguments that say, well, the Council has never been implemented fairly/correctly, but why is Vatican II unique in the past 1000+ years of Councils in being so darned easily misinterpreted/misapplied?  Why is there still massive debate in the Church on what the documents actually say or mean?  I agree with Pat, the fact there has to be a correct “key” to understanding the Council is prima facie evidence of problems of clarity or specificity within it.  No other Council since the early Church has been so confounding.  Of course, Vatican II was the first Council never to define any Dogma nor declare any anathemas]

…..Any fair-minded person must admit that the Society’s positions on the topics of ecumenism, religious liberty, and collegiality at any time prior to 1960 were completely humdrum and uncontroversial restatements of obvious Catholic teaching. Is it possible a humdrum and uncontroversial statement of immutable teaching in 1960 is now controversial and even heretical in 1970 or 2015? How can we promote a hermeneutic of continuity on the one hand and on the other say that a formerly fine presentation of Catholic teaching (within living memory of many) should now be forbidden and considered harmful or even heretical?

It seems to me that you cannot have it both ways. You cannot truly accept a hermeneutic of continuity and consider such views as harmful or heretical. It also suggests that the doctrinal problems that currently prevent canonical recognition are not entirely on the side of the society. Clearly, the Church needs to work through some issues herself.

———End Quote———

Before I conclude, there are some who say the problems with the SSPX are not so much doctrinal as disciplinary.  They maintain that the SSPX still refuses to submit to the ordinary authority of the Church and thus remains schismatic.  I think this is a valid point, but I think it also puts the cart before the horse to some degree, because it fails to answer why the SSPX finds themselves in this predicament.  That reason, of course, gets back to the doctrinal issues outlined above, and the Society’s refusal to accept doctrinal approaches (they cannot be definitions, as nothing was formally defined) emphasized at Vatican II.

But really, this entire drama surrounding the SSPX has for a long time for me come down to one paramount matter: how far up the chain of hierarchy in the Church are you willing to assign blame for the present crisis afflicting the Church?  Some quite vehemently (and correctly) blast all manner of bishops and priests for being progressives, modernists, unfaithful, or even for adhering to a different religion.  But many of those same folks steadfastly refuse to countenance at least any public criticism of the conciliar and post-conciliar Popes, and of course not the current pontiff.  Which position seemed much more tenable from 1978-2013, when it appeared, if one turned a blind eye to many indicators, that the pontiffs were trying to enforce that hermeneutic of continuity.  Now that we have a Pope who seems to have a very much different view of how to interpret the Council and the proper direction for the Church, that policy of never assigning any responsibility for the state of the Church to the highest level appears, to me at least, increasingly untenable, if not outright ridiculous.

And I think the tension created by that reality may be driving some of the recently amped-up animus towards the SSPX.  I think it really disturbs folks to have to contemplate the idea that the Pope, whichever one, is not the beacon of orthodoxy he should be.  I can certainly understand that viewpoint.  The concept of infallibility has been distorted and badly misunderstood, to the point that some people will passionately argue that a Pope can never do anything even slightly deleterious with regard to faith and morals.  That disordered understanding is a large part of the reason that we find ourselves in the mess we do.

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