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How a Miracle from Our Lady Helped St. Maximilian Kolbe Start His Apostolate August 12, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, Ecumenism, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, manhood, martyrdom, Our Lady, Saints, sanctity, Society, Spiritual Warfare, Tradition, Virtue.
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A nice little story about an intervention from Our Lady that provided critical financial assistance to the struggling Militia Immaculata started by St. Maximilian stmaxfriar-212x300Kolbe in the early 1920s (he actually conceived the idea in 1917, but because of the war and other factors the group did not start in earnest until a few years later).  It’s one of those little events that might seem small at the time but which help yield great dividends later on.  That so specific a need was met so precisely, and in so mysterious a way, seems to strongly indicate Divine intervention to me, as it did to the Saint.  The heritage of St. Maximilian Kolbe’s original apostolate had been carried forth – or reignited – by the Franciscans of the Immaculate, at least until the disastrous intervention of Rome against that formerly rapidly growing order.

kolbeA bit more background: one of the primary ways Kolbe wanted to carry out his evangelizing efforts was through the use of media, specifically, print media, state of the art for the time.  He wanted to produce faithful Catholic publications to counter the lies and false propaganda of many secular publications that frequently attacked the Church.  But money in post-war Poland, so recently liberated from Russian domination, was very hard to come by.  The primary publication, called The Knight of the Immaculata, was produced on a shoestring budget, but after the first issue was published there wasn’t even enough money left to pay off the debt incurred.  Without an infusion of what was then a substantial amount of cash the publication would almost certainly fold.  We’ll take up the story from there, from the book St. Maximilian Kolbe, Apostle of Our Difficult Age:

The situation facing Father Maximilian after the publication of the first issue of The Knight was extremely difficult.  The debts he had contracted were so high that the initiative was in danger of falling at any moment.  Fortunately, a good priest, Father Tobiasiewicz, pastor of St. Nicholas’ Church in Krakow, was inspired to help.  He understood the holiness of the initiative and the financial difficulties of Father Kolbe and gave a generous donation.  Following in his footsteps, other priests gave contributions.  It was thus possible to collect half the amount needed Kolbe (1)to defray the expenses of the first issue.  But what of the other half, which according to the sources was about 500 marks?

Father Maximilian decided to appeal to his Lady.  Kneeling at her altar he invoked her with fervent supplications.

After he had ended his fervent prayer, a true outburst of the heart of a son who sought shelter in the heart of the Mother full of love, he was starting to leave when his eyes saw a non-liturgical object lying on the altar cloth.  He went closer.  It was an envelope. In his love for order and harmony and the decorum of the church, he ascended the steps and to his grateful surprise read – written on it, in very small letters – ‘For You, Immaculate Mother.’ He opened it, and marvel of marvels, he found inside the exact amount of the remaining debt for the printing of the first issue of The Knight of the Immaculata.

He understood everything, and in an outburst of tears knelt in grateful adoration.

———-End Quote———-

Possibly simply a coincidence, or the pious act of some noble soul, but, then again, possibly not. Saint Maximilian Kolbe certainly understood. Let those with eyes to see, see……..

Saint Maximilian Kolbe, pray for our beloved Holy Mother Church, in this time of desperate need.


Priest Martyred by ISIS Gave Land for Mosque August 1, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, different religion, disaster, Ecumenism, error, General Catholic, horror, martyrdom, persecution, priests, sadness, scandals, secularism, sickness, Society, the struggle for the Church.
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While avoiding speaking ill of the dead, especially those martyred, I am overwhelmed with a sense of irony, and a sense that the Lord does indeed work in mysterious ways.

Father Jacques Hamel, murdered by crazed islamists (is there any other kind, I ask only somewhat in jest?), ostensibly in retribution for something that happened nearly 1,000 years ago (the Crusades – muslims will never, ever forget the time Christians came in and forcibly pried loose a small part of formerly Christian lands from the islamic death grip – that is such a grave offense to their sense of the “ummah,” and that what “allah” has granted to islam, shall always be a part of it), had donated some land so that a mosque (another one) could be built near his parish.  This can certainly be filed under no good deed shall go unpunished, but I wonder if there isn’t a more important message being conveyed by Him Who is infinitely Just. Not that God would be the author of evil, but………..I’m sure you can discern what I am driving at.

While trying to maintain charity for this poor departed soul, who desperately needs prayers, as do all un-canonized souls, I will say that Father Hamel certainly appears to be a man of his generation, the generation that found Vatican II and the “new pentecost” so intoxicating:

Father Jacques Hamel, the 86-year-old assistant priest at the church in St Etienne-du-Rouvray, near Normandy, met his Creator last Tuesday when two Muslim men armed with knives slit his throat while chanting the Islamic takbir. The killers claimed they were sacrificing blood to avenge the 11th century Crusades. It turns out that Fr Hamel was actually a dear friend to Islam. According to his fellow members of clergy, Fr Hamel helped put aside a plot of land near the church, where he would ultimately be murdered by Islamic jihadists, for the purposes of building a mosque to serve the Muslim community in the area.

“Church authorities facilitated the giving of land beside his church to local Muslims to build a mosque, and they were given use of the parish hall and other facilities during Ramadan,” stated Father Mark Ephrem Nolan, Prior of the Benedictine Monastery of the Holy Cross. [Was this true charity, with the eternal end of souls always in mind, or was this more worldly sentiment?]

Despite the ongoing wave of Islamic terrorism, Christians in the Rouen community where Fr Hamel was killed have made an earnest effort to welcome Muslims with open arms and open hearts.

“Efforts have been made by the Christian community to be welcoming to Muslims,” saidFr Nolan. “The Sisters even give reading lessons to Muslim kids in tower blocks.”

Both parishioners and clergy alike all attest to the fact that Fr Hamel was a humble man who put his life’s work in building personal relationships. “He led a pure, simple life, with an emphasis on building friendships,” added Fr Nolan. [Did he also instill a powerful sense the Doctrine of the Faith, especially the extreme dubiousness of salvation outside formal communion with the Church?]

…….. In the final pastoral letter to his parish before his unexpected death, Fr Hamel reminded the Christian congregation to “accept each other as they are,” without judgment or ridicule. [Even souls bound for hell?  Is that how Saint John Vianney preached, or practically any other Saint one might care to name?]

And still, Islamic terrorists took his life in a fit of hatred and rage.

Well, of course they did.  Expecting otherwise requires willful ignorance, or obstinance, in the face of 1400 years of unequivocal testimony to the nature of islam.  Only a West totally denuded of Faith, aside from a few souls here or there, and so blinded by a false and damnable ideology of “religious tolerance” (a tolerance originally dreamed up to drive the Church from the public square, and assert a permanent ascendancy of the secular state over Her), could think otherwise.

And yet, even in the face of this diabolical act of evil, even as muslims throughout the West throw down the gauntlet of challenge, openly advocating that they will force Europe, and, if possible, the entire West, to submit to their false, demonic cult of violence and cruel repression, Church leaders in France and in the Vatican STILL refuse to see the truth in front of their face. The secular leaders of the West are, if anything, even more blind.  Of course, for partisans of sexular paganism, which is pretty much all elites everywhere, their true enemy has always been orthodox, believing Catholicism.  They are quite happy to submit to the man-made religion of islam if it means seeing their archenemy vanquished.

I fear – or perhaps I should say, the evidence strongly indicates – that applies equally if they wear a red- or pink-piped cassock, or a Saville Row suit.

Lord, have mercy on Your Church. We are in desperate need of it.

Priest slaughtered during Mass, nun injured; bishop claims perps “victims” July 26, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, Basics, disaster, Ecumenism, episcopate, error, General Catholic, Glory, Holy suffering, martyrdom, persecution, priests, scandals, shocking, Society, the struggle for the Church, unadulterated evil.
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During Mass this morning in Rouen, a French priest was nearly beheaded (he perished), and a nun gravely wounded, during an attack by jihadists that also devolved into a hostage situation where several others were injured.  The instigators of this attack shouted the dreadfully familiar “allahu akbar” and were subsequently killed by French police.  The parish where this attack occurred had apparently been on an ISIS target list for over a year:

Two knife-wielding attackers who had pledged allegiance to ISIS, shouting “Allahu Akbar,” slit the throat of an 84-year-old priest and critically wounded at least one other person during a Tuesday morning terror attack on a Catholic church near the Normandy city of Rouen, officials said.

The terrorists, who were later shot and killed by police, forced priest Jacques Hamel to kneel before they slaughtered him, and the Islamist attackers captured the bloody episode on film, Reuters reported, citing a nun who escaped the assault. ISIS’ Amaq news agency said the France attack was carried out by two Islamic State “soldiers,” Reuters reported…….

……..The attackers, who were not immediately identified, entered through the back door of the church and took the priest, two nuns and two parishioners hostage during morning Mass, police said.

Police responded and later confirmed that the attackers had been “neutralized,” Sky News reported. Three hostages were rescued in good condition, while another was taken away on a stretcher, according to reports.

It seems basically everyone at the Mass – the priest, a couple of female religious, and two lay people, were taken hostage?  Amazingly, the Archbishop of Rouen, comfortably ensconced at World Youth Day in Krakow, described the murderers as “victims:”

Away from his diocese at the World Youth Day celebrations in Krakow, Poland the archbishop of Rouen has released astatement on the death of one of his priests this morning, which strangely seems to identify both the slain clergyman and his killers as “victims”.

He said: “I have learnt with sadness of the killing this morning at the Church of Saint-Etienne du Rouvray. The three victims: the priest, Father Jacques Hamel, 84, and the perpetrators of the assassination.

“Three other people were injured, one very seriously. I cry out to God with all men of good will. I would invite non-believers to join in the cry!……. The Catholic Church cannot take weapons other than those of prayer and brotherhood among men.

We can always count on the post-VII modernist-progressive cabal to invert the truth, say the wrong thing, and cause scandal.  How one turns vicious, cold-blooded murderers, shot in the very act of committing grave crimes, into victims, is beyond me.  It requires decades of deep immersion in moral relativism and a reprobate sense to arrive at that level of moral confusion and abdication of duty.

As for “other weapons,” how about the Truth, Bishop Lebrun?  How about preaching the Truth of Jesus Christ in season and out, and clearly denouncing the massive, soul-killing errors of Mohammadism?

Lebrun, a longtime liberal, was appointed Archbishop of Rouen by Francis just last year.  Perhaps he’s still growing into his office.

As for the priest, Father Jacques Hamel, he was 84  years when killed.  I know nothing of his personal beliefs, but he must be considered a martyr for the Faith and the Church in France.  He is the first priest martyred in continental Europe in quite some time, isn’t he?  Perhaps since the fall of the communist empire?

We live in dreadful times.  It is vital to stay prayed up.

Via Cardinal Sarah’s twitter feed: “How many dead before European governments understand situation of West today? How many decapitations?”

Indeed.  One more question: how many Catholics must die before the Church hierarchy recognizes that all “dialogue” with islam is a useless diversion, at best, and stands in total opposition to islam and its murderous errors as the Church did for so many centuries?

A Horrific Tale of How Communists Try to Destroy Holy Innocence July 22, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, General Catholic, Interior Life, martyrdom, paganism, persecution, sadness, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sexual depravity, sickness, Society, the struggle for the Church, Tradition, Virtue.
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Vietnamese Servant of God Marcel Tan, CSsR, was killed by communists.  That’s
pretty widely known.  What may not be as widely known is that he suffered at the hands of communists/leftists throughout his life, even before WWII.

As Van was growing up, his family became mired in poverty.  His mother sent him to a school/church run by a priest.  It turns out, this priest was very  unworthy of his pious mother’s trust.  He drank, he gambled, and he womanized.  Even wore, he turned over the formation of the young boys entrusted to him to  extremely deranged and perverse individuals, the leader of which was actually an infiltrator from the communist party cadres being formed up by Nguyen That Tan (Ho Chi Minh) in pre-war Marcel_Van_Joachim_Nguyen_tan_VanVietnam.  He was also a sicko child molester.  He tried to violate Van’s purity in every way imaginable, and wound up inflicting grave spiritual wounds on the boy.

This is exactly the program communists intended for their agents in the Church to carry out – wrecking holy souls, destroying innocence, spreading vice and evil, and creating chaos in order to destroy the moral credibility of the Church and weaken it as a source of opposition to communist world domination.

From Marcel Van, The Triumph of Love, pp. 36-41 (segments):

“In the rectory there was a certain boy [more like a teen, probably a late teen. His name was Vinh] who was half-monitor, half-teacher; he detested me especially because one day he had wanted me to commit an action against the Sixth Commandment…..But I had resisted energetically, and from then on I avoided that man’s presence.  Moreover, I was always regarded as an exemplary child, whereas he was constantly reprimanded by the priest. [Which makes one wonder why the priest kept him in his employ]  This annoyed him and kindled his hatred against me……

Every morning he would call me to his room under the pretext of asking about my health and initiating me into the “life of perfection.”………..After questioning me, he would motion me to lie on the floor, then give me a beating with a rattan switch as he sang at the top of his lungs.  Finally, he would give me this order with his eyes: “You are forbidden to cry!”………Then, before dismissing me, he would placevan1413 his index finger before his lips with a severe look and..give me this order: “You are forbidden to talk about this.”  Sometimes he would say, “If you talk, I will bury you alive.” [typical behavior from a child molester]

Van certainly did not open his mouth.  Within a week his poor little body could not find a comfortable position or take any rest……..Finally, traces of blood were found   on his shirt discovered in the laundry drew some attention to the problem.  The pitiless torturer suspected of being the author of these beatings was warned to change his ways.  [We can see how the problem of weak priests not dealing with wanton immorality preying upon children dates back decades.] But he would know how to take his revenge.

Shortly after this first persecution, another more collective one began. Profiting from the pastor’s absence, the catechists set up a shameful kangaroo court whose purpose was to “judge” the undesirable Van.  Master Vinh presided as chief justice.  Court was held church after evening prayers.  The child describes the humiliating scene:

When I was brought before this people’s court, I was stripped of all my clothes and then given a banana leaf loin cloth, except on certain days when I did not have even that………Their sole intention was to make me act like an idiot for their amusement.  They therefore asked me questions on loose and dirty subjects to make me squirm.  But I always kept silence or answered them very briefly……

images…..Exasperated by the boy’s resistance, the perverse monitor made a second attempt to rape him.  Van again resisted him “with all my might,” in spite of threats of being “buried alive.”  Furious, Vinh again assembled the odious tribunal that very evening, and the implacable sentence fell: “You are henceforth forbidden to receive Holy Communion!” [Think of the diabolical inversion here.  He is denied Communion not for engaging in sin, but for refusing to do so!]  Van protested and stood up to the entire assembly.  Tempers flared, and he was badly beaten.  The boy collapsed, he could no longer stand, so he was tied to a bed in a sitting position…….

……Finally he was allowed to receive Communion, “but forbidden to eat, to see whether I would live or die.”  The next day Van went to Communion and ate no food. That evening, he was very weak…….

“The next morning,” relates Van, I went to Communion again, but it was the last time. After Communion that day, my heart felt drier than usual and I was overcome with an indescribable sorrow.  I was extremely disturbed by the questions they had asked me.

Indeed, with the perverse intention of confusing Van, the wicked pseudo-catechists “had evoked the lives of past Saints,” saying that they “went to Communion one day and gave thanks for a year.”……..

———End Quote———

The communist goal was achieved – horribly confused and abused, his innocence in many matters lost, never to be regained, Van began to suffer horrible scruples and the sublime, miraculous piety and holy knowledge he had possessed from a very early age disappeared for many years.  He eventually overcame his scruples and regained his holy interior life, but only after enormous suffering and personal lost.  This scene, repeated thousands of times around the world by deliberate communist infiltration of the Church, paved the way for the disasters of the 20th century and the near-collapse of the Church at this time.  It was a plan so successful, only the devil himself could have devised it.

Marcel Van, please pray for us, and our Holy Mother Church, so sorrowfully afflicted and divided in these times of darkness!

Pope Francis Ally: muslims who become Christian should be killed July 21, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, different religion, disaster, Ecumenism, error, Francis, General Catholic, Holy suffering, horror, martyrdom, persecution, scandals, self-serving, the struggle for the Church.
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Via Mahound, the kind of interreligious dialogue that muslims appreciate – conversion for Christians to islam is just peachy, but muslims who convert to Christianity must be killed (my comments):

Two months ago, Pope Francis welcomed Sheik Ahmed el-Tayeb, – the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar University in Cairo, and the highest scholarly authority in Sunni Islam – to the Vatican.

And a week ago, the Pope sent a representative to Al-Azhar as a follow-up and to “relaunch dialogue.”

The original meeting, which included discussions between larger delegations from Al-Azhar and the Vatican, was characterized as extremely friendly – a sort of “re-set” of Catholic-Muslim relations after the iciness allegedly set off by Pope Benedict’s Regensburg remarks in 2006…….

……..The Pope gave Sheik el-Tayeb a number of gifts including a copy of Laudato si. [Oh I’m sure Tayeb read that with bated breath.  Cover to cover in a night, for sure.  In reality, it probably went in the fire]

Then they spontaneously embraced.


However, as the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies recently pointed out (as highlighted by Raymond Ibrahim in a recent essay), el-Tayeb has a history of saying one thing to Western audiences and another to Arabic or Muslim ones. [No, really?!?]

For example, during this past Ramadan, el-Tayeb reaffirmed on his television show that Islam mandates death for apostates:

Contemporary apostasy presents itself in the guise of crimes, assaults, and grand treason, so we deal with it now as a crime that must be opposed and punished…. Those learned in Islam [al-fuqaha] and the imams of the four schools of jurisprudence consider apostasy a crime and agree that the apostate must either renounce his apostasy or else be killed.

The plucky Institute made a public statement calling on him to renounce this position, also making the general observation that
Al Azhar adopts two contradictory speeches: one is open and directed externally, while the other supports violent extremism, and is directed internally. [It’s called taqqiyah, or “holy lying,” and is sanctioned by the Koran.  Basically any immoral behavior is sanctioned, provided it is directed towards the house of war, or the infidel.  That’s us.  Muslims are actually called to lie to the infidel in order to weaken their resistance to islam and bring them into the ummah, or islamic world.  That can be achieved by relatively peaceful means, but since that rarely happens, it is usually down to war and violent repression.]
Interestingly, it appears that the statement was not released in English or referenced on the English version of the site.

What are we to make of this? [Taqqiyah]

Is Pope Francis aware that his new Muslim friend appears to believe that apostates from Islam should be killed? How does this comport with the “protection” of Christians in the region? Or perhaps the Pope, in his rejection of “proselytism,” does not believe that Christian converts are worthy of protection, or should not be placed in the category of “Christians.” Maybe it’s more of an ethnic category.
Also, converts do tend to be a bit conservative, after all. [Heh.  Great point]
Actually, I suspect the Pope has no idea what el-Tayeb really believes or more to the point, doesn’t really care. But he does seem to care very much about publicizing how dialogue with his quasi-peer distinguishes him from his predecessor……[It’s all about the agenda, which has little to do with islam, and everything to do with internal Church politics, remaking the Church according to Francis’ vision]
…..In fairness to el-Tayeb, as the highest Sunni Muslim scholarly authority in the world it would be difficult if not impossible for him to declare to a Muslim audience that apostates shouldn’t be put to death, as this is clearly stated in the Koran, the Hadith and Islamic history and tradition. [In other words, it’s a hardcore islamic doctrine and not subject to reform without encountering immense resistance.  Thus, the taqqiyah] In that context, advocating the death penalty for apostates is not an unusual or extreme position at all. Indeed, polls show that most Muslims in Egypt support it. Though, again, there is a tradition of not, as it were, making a big deal of this to Western audiences………

……..The problem with Islam is not that all Muslims are evil. It’s that all Muslims are to one degree or another beholden to an evil ideology. Many Muslims (including most women) are enslaved to it.

So, why don’t they just leave?

See above.

Who speaks for them?

Not Pope Francis, obviously.

Sorry to say, but that much is certainly true.  Francis’ defense of persecuted Christians has appeared disinterested and pro forma, to say the least.  But someone should remind him it is his solemn duty as the Vicar of Christ to speak for and defend all Christians, including non-Catholics, and even those wicked, nasty conservative ones.

How could any reasonable Christian-muslim dialogue occur on anything like an even or rational basis, when one of the religions in question preaches death to the infidel and those who convert from it? That is to say, what kind of dialogue could occur, other than one based on Christian surrender?  Is that not what many perceive this dialogue to be – the Church surrendering to islam for the sake of sexular pagan plaudits, or at least to serve a worldly ideology?

And to think this is the same Church as St. Pius V, Saint Fernando III, or Urban II.  Or…..???

I know. Water is wet.  But I gotta write about something.  I can’t come up with 20 original posts a week!

Want to be Prepared for a Persecution?  Read the History of the English Martyrs July 20, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, Christendom, Domestic Church, General Catholic, history, Holy suffering, martyrdom, persecution, priests, reading, Revolution, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
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I just finished a great book on the life of William Weston, one of the many Jesuit priests sent to England during the hellish reigns of the later Tudor monarchs.  Amazingly, even though this man was revered by many Saints for his incredible holiness and record of service to others, which they felt far surpassed their own, he is not only not canonized, he doesn’t even have a cause of canonization.  That’s a shame, as his book is the best of the 6 or 7 I’ve read on the subject.

Anyway, more to the point of this post, I’ve had people request from time to time resources that could help them survive what many feel is a coming persecution.  I’ve thought about it for a long time, and I’ve conclude that nothing could prepare one better for a persecution than the historical record of one that has already occurred.  And I don’t think any preceding persecution can better inform Catholics of the horrors that await, nor the heroism they are called to, than the history of the the English persecution of Catholics.  I believe this for the following reasons:

  • The persecution occurred in early modern times. While those times were very different from today, they are much more similar than, say, the persecutions of Decius or Diocletian.  In fact, the Anglosphere of today grew directly out of this time period, and was fundamentally shaped by it.
  • We can read the record in its native tongue. While flowery, we can understand the language of the English Saints and martyrs.
  • The English persecution was one of the first to use the power of the totalitarian modern state to extend the persecution as deep into people’s lives as possible. At times, Catholics could not travel more than a mile or two without being accosted by pursuivants, sheriffs, bailiffs, etc., all bent on finding them out and receiving the reward for putting them in prison.  The organs of state repression invaded people’s homes, tore them apart looking for priests (whether one was there or not), and then charged the homeowner for the privilege of having his home wrecked!
  • It was fueled by unbridled hatred for the Catholic Church. Nothing makes a man more wicked than an guilty conscience, and in Elizabethan England, there were many, many to go around. This was an especially vicious, personal persecution.
  • The persecution was justified by the state’s fear of Catholics holding beliefs different from the officially-sanctioned state religion. Sound familiar?
  • The government used false flag operations and the use of deeply embedded spies as a matter of course. Plot after plot was hatched by government representatives and then innocent Catholics were blamed for them.  Greed abounded. After thousands became incredibly rich from the rape of Church lands, government agents found they could steal still more wealth by throwing Catholic landowners in prison and stealing their property for themselves.

There’s a great deal more, of a more positive nature: the endlessly edifying example of the English Catholics, the great number of Saints, the extensive writings they left us, the fact that the Church bore up under this, one of the longest persecutions in world history (nearly 300 years).  The fact that there were still Catholics after 250+ years of constant abuse, theft, murder, wrongful imprisonment, and worse is a shining example for us all.

As far as very good sources to turn to from the English persecution, here are some of my favorites:

  • Edmund Campion, A Life by Evelyn Waugh  –  straightforward, easy-to-read modern biography.  Waugh kept the opinionating to a minimum and reported the facts more or less straight.  Much appreciated, that.
  • Autobiography of a Hunted Priest, by Fr. John Gerard, SJ Excellent autobiography, especially for its details of his priestly mission, the lives of good Catholics of the time, the lengths to which pursuivants would go to find priests, and the horrors of torture and prison. Very good.
  • The King’s Good Servant, but God’s First by James Monti – provides great background on the genesis of the English persecution, the protestant greed and errors that caused it, and of course much on the life and writings of one of England’s greatest Saints, Thomas More. The book is modern in outlook and is perhaps wounded a bit by modern sensibilities, but it’s still a solid resource
  • An Autobiography from the Jesuit Underground – Father William Weston, SJ, foreward by Evelyn Waugh – perhaps the best book of the bunch. Extremely extensive notes that add a great deal of valuable information, especially of the role played by turncoat Catholics who spied and reported on their former co-religionists.  The damage they did was unbelievable.  Cannot recommend this one enough
  • Blessed Margaret Clitherow by Margaret Monro – short but good 1940’s biography from when the Saint was still a Blessed.  I liked it.  It’s a good source of inspiration.  Clitherow’s death was grisly, however.
  • The Cleaving of Christendom – Warren Carroll’s history of the period is a very good reference work but of necessity has to gloss over specific events since it is a broad tour of the entire history of the Church
  • The Outlaws of Ravenhurst – Yes, it’s a kid’s/teen’s novel but it still gives a very good sense both for how severe was the English persecution, and its very long reach. Catholics really were abducted back from Belgium, France, and even Maryland and made to suffer.
  • Treason by Dena Hunt – I am torn recommending this one, it is a solid enough novel on the subject of the English persecution, the lengths Catholics would go to maintain their Faith, and the kinds of horrific moral quandaries persecution could cause, but there is one unfortunate scene in an early chapter that is really inappropriate and unnecessary. Be forewarned, when the gentleman goes upstairs to the woman of ill-repute’s room in the inn, it’s a bad scene.  Probably not what you think, but bad nonetheless.

I’m afraid I’ve forgotten one or two I wanted to recommend.  Another good source of information and inspiration, of course, is reading about the Cristiada, the persecution of Mexico’s Catholics, which was much shorter but equally fierce.  Mexican Martyrdom and The Power and the Glory are good books on that subject.

I’m open to your suggestions.  I pray you find this post useful.

Are Orthodox, Copts, and Similar Killed for the faith Christians? July 14, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, Ecumenism, General Catholic, Holy suffering, Interior Life, martyrdom, persecution, Saints, sanctity, sickness, Society, Virtue.
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Two weeks ago, I did a post on the persecution of Coptic Christians in Egypt.  A commenter objected that those holding heretical views or in schismatic groups are not Christians.  I argued back that they are certainly considered to be Christians by the muslims, and are dying for the Faith, even if they hold erroneous beliefs.

This may seem like hair-splitting, but touches on matters foundational to our self-understanding as Christians.  As such, I ran the matter past a local traditional priest, and was gratified to find his understanding of these folks essentially identical to mine.

In normal situations, it is not wrong to say that Copts or Orthodox are not Christian, or are at least highly faulty ones.  They hold views that are erroneous, dangerous, and perhaps even damnable under certain circumstances.  Of course, most all of these people know no better, they were raised in this error or in schism and were taught it was right and correct from a very early age.  Their personalresponsibility for holding such errors is, then, highly debatable.

However, my post was not describing a normal situation.  It was describing a situation of dire, religious-oriented persecution.  These people are being wounded and killed for professing Jesus Christ as their Savior and rejecting islam.  They can, in that sense, even be considered martyrs.  Of course, the specifics of individual situations mean everything, but broadly speaking, they are dying for their belief in Jesus Christ, an act always held to be immensely meritorious.  It is even quite possible that in some situations this profession was sufficient to overcome whatever guilt they hold for their erroneous/schismatic beliefs and provided a baptism by desire/blood into the True Church.  That’s an elaborate issue and goes beyond the scope of this post, but I believe, and the priest agreed, that such a profession of faith could – could – even be meritorious of salvation.

And that’s precisely why the muslims torture, maim, and kill them, because these people refuse to deny Jesus Christ as their savior and refuse to accept the false, demonic religion created by the Arabian goat herder Mohammad.

A critical note of distinction: these people are NOT dying for the errors they hold or in rejection of the Catholic Faith.  If they were, their actions would not be efficiacious of Grace and would be greatly offensive to God.  They are dying for Jesus Christ and His religion by the lights they have.  Those lights may be faulty, but they are the best they have.  Those lights are not extinguished from merit due to these errors.  In the same sense the Church has declared martyrs and Saints certain souls from the days of the Fathers who died for the Faith even though they had not been formally received into the Church and probably still held wrong beliefs even up to the moment of death.

As I said, it’s a complex issue.  Fundamentally, I believe in Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus as a straight up, literal interpretation, but I have a hard time believing souls holding errors innocently would still be damned by God for all eternity after dying for the Holy Name.  Since they are being viciously persecuted for Christ, since they are dying for Christ, I will call them Christian.  The priest agreed.

I’m open to refutation based on quotes from Saints, Fathers, and/or Councils.  I don’t think there is such, but one never knows.  There has always been a mystical element of the Faith, however, in that we must recognize that what we can see and record is not all there is to reality.  God operates beyond time and space and even a murderer who viciously repudiated the Faith throughout his life was often considered saved by a mere kiss of a crucifix on the gallows.  We don’t know what God sees in the human heart.

Atrocities against Egypt’s Christians continue to grow July 7, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, disaster, Ecumenism, General Catholic, horror, martyrdom, persecution, scandals, Society, Spiritual Warfare, the enemy, unadulterated evil.
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At least three Christians (all Copts) have been killed in Egypt in the past week and a half.  They included a priest and a nun.  The layman was beheaded.  Some are trying to say the nun was accidentally wounded, but there is some skepticism over this.  A brief roundup on the depredations against Christians in one of the more stable, “permissive” Mideastern states.  Things in places like Syria and Iraq are far, far worse:

Yesterday, July 5, a Coptic nun was shot dead in Egypt.

The police called it a “tragic accident”.  It currently not being treated as a crime. The nun was accidentally caught in a shootout between two rival clans. An stray bullet  killed the nun, says Fides ……..

……..The first reports reported an anti-Christian attack.The investigating police of Guizeh denied this, however, describing the shooting between two local Muslim clans as the reason for the “accidental” death of the nun.

……..On June 24, several Christian homes had been burned in al-Baeda in Alexandria. A Muslim mob had gathered after Friday prayers in front of the house of Christian Naim Aziz because the false rumor was spread among Muslims, that the house may be converted into a church. The Muslims shouted the slogan: “Under no circumstances will there be a church here.” To be sure, deeds followed their  words, and and they burned down the house of a Christian and a few other Christian homes for good measure. [When an area is under muslim suzerainty, generally it is impossible to get permission to build new Christian churches or even substantially improve/repair existing ones.  That’s a powerful means to help keep the Faith in check]

…..The Christians of Egypt have been experiencing a new wave of Islamic violence for months. Last Thursday a Coptic Orthodox priest was murdered on the Sinai Peninsula belonging to Egypt. The priest Raphael Moussa was 46 years old. After the Holy Mass, which he celebrated in the Mar Girgis Church of the city of El-Arish in the north of the peninsula, he was killed in the parking lot in front of the church by a targeted shot. The murder was claimed by the terrorist militia Islamic State (IS).

A separate post from Eponymous Flower deals with the beheading:

on Monday, July 4, a Coptic Christian was stabbed in Tanta (Gharbia Governorate) by Islamists and then beheaded.

The 33-year-old pharmacist and Coptic Christian, Magdy Attia, was lured with a medication order into a house and killed there. According to Egyptian media reports, the house is inhabited by Salafists.

Awful.  What is happening to the Christians of the Mideast is horrific.  I pray their sufferings may bring a great flowering of the Faith there and conversion of millions of muslims.

For the commenter who dropped by this morning and left a profanity-filled rant, buddy, I do cover the persecution of Christians in the Mideast all the time.  I have written dozens of posts on the subject over the years, as longtime readers can attest.  I can’t possibly ride everyone’s hobby horse every day, and, yes, local events tend to get more play than international ones.  I understand your outrage and anger but I ain’t the one to direct it at.  I’ve been a strong supporter of Mideast Christians and your comments were as unjust as they were unhinged.

Any further such comments will result in permanent banning, even granting some leeway for English not being your first language.


I love Eastern Christian art.  It is so ancient, so warm.  There are incredible treasures of Christian art and architecture in Egypt.  I pray they are permitted to survive.  EG28-8-14JT


The fact that the Church leadership continues to very often ignore or explain away muslim atrocities against Christians in pursuit of (I guess) the great one world religion project is one of the most galling aspects of being a Catholic today.

Saint Alphonsus – we must all be martyrs, either of the sword, or of patience May 3, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Domestic Church, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Holy suffering, Interior Life, martyrdom, Saints, sanctity, Spiritual Warfare, Tradition, Virtue.
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In keeping with the previous couple of posts, some exegesis on suffering from St. Alphonsus I found helpful.  I pray you do, as well.  Minimal commentary on this one, I probably say too much as it is:

He that loves God in suffering earns a double reward in paradise.  St. Vincent de Paul said that it was a great misfortune to be free from suffering in this life. And he added, that a congregation or an individual that does not suffer, and is applauded by all the world, is not far from a fall. [AHEM cough-choke-gag]  It 06956ce2b3was on this account that St. Francis of Assisi, on the day that he had suffered nothing for God, became afraid, lest God had forgotten him.  St. John Chrysostom says, that when God endows a man with the grace of suffering, he gives him a greater grace than that of raising the dead to life; because in performing miracles man remains God’s debtor; whereas in suffering, God makes Himself the debtor of man.  And he adds, that whoever endures something for God, even had he no other gift that the strength to suffer for the God whom he loves, this would procure for him an immense reward.  Wherefore he affirmed, that he considered St. Paul to have received a greater grace in being bound in chains for Jesus Christ, than in being rapt up to the third heaven in ecstasy.

But patience has a perfect work (Jm i:4). The meaning of this is that nothing is more pleasing to God than to see a soul suffering with patience all the crosses sent her by Him.  The effect of love is to liken the lover to the person loved. St. Francis de Sales said, “All the wounds of Christ are so many mouths, which preach to us that we must suffer for Him. The science of the saints is to suffer constantly for Jesus; and in this way we shall soon become saints.” A person that loves Jesus Christ is anxious to be treated like Jesus Christ – poor, persecuted, and despised.  St. John belied all the saints clothed in white, and with palms in their hands (Apoc vii:9). The palm is the symbol of the martyr, and yet all the saints did not suffer martyrdom; – why, then, do all the saints bear palms in their hands?  St. Gregory replies, that all the saints have been martyrs either of the sword or of patience, so that, he adds, “we can be martyrs without the sword, if we keep patience.”

————-End Quote———-

There’s an old saying, be careful to ask God for patience, He’ll give you plenty to try your patience.  I fear that in these times our patience will be sorely tested whether we ask for it, or not.

But we should keep in mind that bearing faithfully, patiently, all manner of persecution and scandal is just as valid a way of pleasing God as is being tossed in prison or run upon a sword.  That’s the point of the above, and it’s a lesson vital for the fears and threats we have to deal with almost every day in this sad fallen age.

Pray, do penance, hope, and don’t worry! OK, try hard not to worry.

Furthermore, I consider that leftism must be destroyed.



It feels weird just kind of lopping it on there. It changes the tenor of the end of the post, from hopeful/reflective to combative. Total non sequitur.  Meh.  May not stick with it.  We’ll see. Barnhardt is pretty much always combative, while I try to have an occasional other side.

Believing in the Doctrine of the Faith Will Get You Fired, and Investigated by Police, at “Catholic” colleges  May 3, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, disaster, error, horror, martyrdom, paganism, persecution, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sexual depravity, sickness, Society, the struggle for the Church, unbelievable BS.
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At Loyola Marymount in Los Angeles – a university in the 20th century Jesuit tradition of modernism, immorality, lies, and obfuscation – a lay employee was fired for having the temerity to very gently explain Catholic doctrine to militant students afflicted with perverse inclinations and general confusion over gender identity, which every 4 year old generally figures out quite clearly, unless they attend public schools and most colleges and universities.  In which case, they lose their minds and no longer know up from down, and particularly right from wrong.

Although the students initially acted politely and seemed to appreciate the back and forth of the conversation, you just knew this being a leftist dominated institution in the Year of Our Lord 2016, they would just have to file a complaint.  Complain they did, and now the employee is not only fired from their job at Loyola, but they are under investigation by the Orwellian-named “Bias Incident Response Team,” and the Los Angeles Police.  Which just goes to show that not much has changed since the days of L.A. Confidential:

It’s uncommon at Jesuit universities these days for someone to openly share a traditional Catholic viewpoint. [How’s that for understatement of the decade?]

When it happened at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, the school was so spooked it called the Los Angeles Police Department. [Was it spooked, was it really afraid, or is this simply part of the process of the radical Left attempting to ratchet up the open persecution of Christians in this country to an entirely more threatening level?]

Both the police and the university’s Bias Incident Response Team are investigating the stated belief that only two genders exist, male and female, as a hate crime.

A Loyola alumni office employee discussed her views on sexual orientation, which align with the Roman Catholic Church, with three students who were hanging up posters on the subject on April 14.

Cosette Carleo, one of the students involved, told The College Fix in a phone interview that the hate crime under investigation is “denying transgenderism.”….

…..The employee told Carleo, who identifies as gender-neutral, that only two genders exist, male and female, according to the student. Carleo told The Fix that statement was the hate crime.

Carleo responded that “you can have your opinion” as long as it doesn’t “deny my existence.”

Let me rephrase that for honesty: “You can have your opinion, so long as it corresponds to mine, which just happens to be a violent competing religion that will brook no compromise, least of all with you, Christofascist.  Furthermore, I’m insane, and you must not simply share my insanity, but rejoice in it, and call it normality and saneness.”

OK, got a bit windy and harsh there.  But how many marginal people of unhappy unbringings are falling into this mental illness because they perceive not only that it brings them great power and attention (as this example brilliantly illustrates), but it also conveys on them unassailable moral authority and victimhood status that elevates them to veritable superhuman status?  Just whom has the power of the university and police-like state at their back?  It sure ain’t the Catholic.  So forgive me if I scoff at your self-serving claim that my refusal to accept your mental illness as a gender somehow denies your existence.  Give me a break.

Naturally, it turns out that two very different accounts of the exchange have surfaced.  But the supposedly Catholic university has chosen to side entirely with the aggrieved radical, even though there are serious holes in their story. In fact, the university immediately shamed and castigated the employee, refusing to hear her side of events.

The amount of space being given to Catholics to not just “operate” or evangelize, but simply exist, is shrinking at an alarming pace.  I do not think Michael Matt and some others are wrong to fear that before long, the state will find reasons, related to “hate” and “bias,” to refuse to allow us to homeschool our children.  What shall we do then?  If we let our kids be brainwashed by the state, everything we have worked and suffered and struggled for will be for naught.  Much will depend on the specific circumstances, of course, but our options will be limited by deliberate choice.

How long will God allow a culture – and a Church – filled to the gills with such evils to stand?  And where in the heck is Cardinal Gomez in defending this persecuted woman?

The thing is, bowing and scraping to the culture a la Amoris Laetitia isn’t going to buy the Church acceptance or wiggle room.  It’s going to cause the flashing knives of the Left to grow longer and to strike harder.  Hard experience with the world caused the bastions to be built in the first place.  But modernists just had to know better, didn’t they?