A few weeks ago, I did a post announcing Cardinal Burke coming to the Diocese of Dallas to offer Mass on 01/22. I received some hot criticism of this post, offline. Those upset over the post were either involved in bringing Cardinal Burke in, or were particular admirers of the pastor of the parish that hosted him.
So, what is at issue in this little local imbroglio? Confession, and whether I was unfairly harsh towards a local priest my local correspondents feel is very good. Admittedly, I was pointedly critical in a post that perhaps should have been both happier and more bland, simply announcing the good Cardinal’s upcoming arrival and congratulating those who arranged for his visit (both were in the post, along with some other more critical thoughts).
Now, everyone’s definition of good is relative. My definition of a good priest in these days starts with offering the TLM, or at least the Novus Ordo in Latin, or having serious aspirations to do either but being frustrated by episcopal obstinance/malfeasance. Frankly, a handful of exceptions aside, all the extraordinary priests I know are members of explicitly traditional orders.
Taking Confession extremely seriously is requirement #2. This is what separates the men from the boys in my mind. Confession is the great ignored, even inconvenient Sacrament of our time. It is inconvenient because it is a standing rebuke to much of the new theology and ecclesiology that has been imposed on the Church in the past several decades, beliefs that say that whether one is Catholic or not doesn’t count for much, that basically all men are saved, that virtually no one ever commits a mortal sin, etc. These kinds of beliefs are the primary reason why Confession is so little available.
There used to be a sort of rule of thumb in the Church, back in those dark unreconstructed manualist days before the “sainted” Council, that for every hour of Mass, there should be at least an equal number of hours of Confession. In fact, most pre-conciliar parishes had priests (plural) in the Confessional before, during, and after virtually every Mass, along with other set times. This was when the Church, and the souls within, took things like sin and Grace and damnation and redemption very seriously.
But today, in this Diocese as in almost every other, Confession is limited to perhaps an hour a week, if one is lucky, or “by appointment only,” if one is not. This in spite of the fact that our former Bishop, now Cardinal, Kevin Farrell, repeatedly (and a bit uncharacteristically) exhorted his priests and especially pastors to have more REGULAR hours of Confession. Many pastors responded to these exhortations, by adding one more hour weekly to the one they already had (such generosity!), while some did not. A few relative heroes did even more, adding maybe 2 or 3 hours more Confession, and staffing those hours with more than one priest.
In the dearth of Confession, the tyranny is in the numbers. If there is only one priest hearing confessions for one hour a week, and each soul has only 3 minutes with the confessor and there are no gaps in people in the confessional, that one priest can hear 20 confessions a week or 1040 a year. That may sound like quite a lot, but when you have numerous parishes with 7,000, 8,000, 10,000 souls ostensibly belonging, one can instantly see the problem. Of course, the reality is different. What tends to happen is that the same handful of relatively serious souls go to Confession with at least some regularity, while the great mass never go at all.
Couple this with what is known of Catholic belief, even among self-described regular Mass attendees, and the crisis grows into stark relief. The vast majority of Catholics, regular Mass-goers or not, find nothing immoral in contraceptive use or fornication. A near majority even think abortion is morally permissible in at least some cases. The large majority are fine with pseudo-sodo-marriage and think divorce and remarriage are perfectly acceptable. The vast majority believe the Blessed Sacrament to be nothing more than a symbol. The former, if engaged in personally, constitute grave sins requiring sacramental Confession before the Blessed Sacrament is received (recent emanations from Rome notwithstanding). The latter places one outside the community of the faithful; reception of the Blessed Sacrament in this state constitutes the horrible sin of sacrilege and again immediate recourse to Confession is vitally necessary.
Taken together, what we have in the Church today is a great mass of people regularly receiving the Blessed Sacrament in a state that St. Paul decried perfectly in 1 Corinthians 11:27-29 (a bit of Scripture infamously and deliberately excluded from the readings of the Novus Ordo Mass), and with little to no means to correct this dire condition. Adding to that, the very lack of Confession time communicates to the faithful that this is something that isn’t to be taken very seriously. Writ large, this is very close to what Pope Saint John Paul II decried as the “fundamental option,” the idea that God is infinitely loving (and apparently no longer just) and that virtually no one, if anyone (short of evil right wingers like me) is damned. That this is utterly contrary to our Blessed Lord’s clear Word as revealed repeatedly in Sacred Scripture and the guidance of vast numbers of Saints and Fathers seems to count for very little these days. Confession remains generally unavailable.
Not only that, but we have numerous warnings from the Blessed Mother and many of these same Saints about the number of souls condemned to hell. While such warnings are widely viewed as quaint relics from a benighted age to most priests and prelates in the Church today, they have been so numerous, so consistent, and so emphatic that to doubt or deny them is a fool’s errand. I certainly do not. I take these warnings deadly seriously, as I take the biblical types that reveal to us the very small number of the elect, and the great number of the damned.
So, yes, I take Confession very seriously, and its lack of availability as one of the greatest scandals afflicting the Church today. In fact, lack of Confession and unwillingness to take its vital necessity seriously constitute very large elements of the present crisis in the Faith. Thus, the great number of souls falling to hell like so many snowflakes, to quote Our Lady of Fatima.
Several years ago, at the time when former Bishop Farrell was making his exhortations, I did a post that summarized the availability of Confession in the Diocese. I checked most every parish. Some had zero regular hours for Confession. Most had one. A few had two. A tiny handful had somewhat more. Two parishes stood out as placing a great (or, one might say, adequate) emphasis on Confession. I’m sure locals know which two those are (Mater Dei, and St. William in Greenville).
So, even as someone who has admitted mistakes and made public apologies in the past, I don’t feel particularly bad about the post announcing +Burke’s visit and Mass. I didn’t criticize Cardinal Burke in the slightest (in fact I praised him quite a bit), all my critical comments were directed towards confession and the probability, the virtual certitude, that, on a daily basis, souls with unconfessed mortal sins receive the Blessed Sacrament – and the role the diminution of the importance of Confession plays in that. Perhaps I erred in prudence in combining critical commentary in an announcement post for a happy event. Perhaps I could have chosen more artful phrases. But if I erred in charity, it was for the souls of those in gravest risk of eternal damnation, preferring their eternal destiny over more human concerns like the feelings of my correspondents or the pastor of the parish I criticized. Of course, even that may be argued as simply misplaced zeal, but that was my intent, nonetheless.
PS – There were claims I had erred in stating Mary Immaculate – the parish that hosted Cardinal Burke – had only one hour of Confession a week. That was all that was listed on their website (in addition to “by appointment”). I also perused a few bulletins. I saw no other times listed. But apparently, there is a monthly meeting/confab called “Arise” (not entirely unproblematic in its own right) where priests hear Confession. I have no details as to how many priests are present, or for how long Confession is available. Whether this constitutes “regular” Confession or not is arguable. But I thought I’d include this only substantive rebuttal of my arguments for completeness’ sake.
I certainly welcome your comments and appraisal of the matter, if you have any. Thank you.
Cardinal Burke Offering Mass of Reparation in Dallas 01/22 January 12, 2017Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, awesomeness, contraception, Dallas Diocese, different religion, Eucharist, General Catholic, priests, Sacraments, Society, Spiritual Warfare, the struggle for the Church, Virtue.
It would be awesome if it were at a TLM Mass – which would of course mean Mater Dei – but then again, I wasn’t one of those who put in what I am quite certain was most significant effort in inviting Burke and making arrangements for his travel, etc. So good for the folks in the “Catholic Action for Faith and Family” who pulled this off. The Mass is at 10:30am at Mary Immaculate Parish in Farmers Branch. This is a Mass of Reparation for the sin of abortion, marking of course yet another sad anniversary of this nation’s genocide against it’s own young.
I don’t plan on assisting at this Mass, as grateful as I am for Cardinal Burke’s relative orthodoxy and his stand against the increasingly unhinged and egregious errors and abuses emanating from the pontificate of Francis. I will note in passing that Mary Immaculate is one of a number of parishes in this diocese with only one hour of Confession a week. I do pray that Cardinal Burke’s presence and example encourage a much more generous attitude on the part of Fr. Michael Forge and Daniel Rendon to this most vital of Sacraments. It is a metaphysical certitude that there are numerous souls receiving Communion weekly and even daily at Mary Immaculate in a state of mortal sin, and who have not availed themselves of Confession in years if not decades. And why should they, when it is evidently of such low priority to those with the solemn duty to pastor their souls to Heaven?
I am a bit reticent to introduce this rant into a post on what is really a different subject and should be a happy occasion, but I must wonder how many souls who may assist at what will surely be a glorious event in the life of this parish (and a significant statement on the part of the clergy in hosting Burke) do not have unconfessed involvement in the deliberately willed termination of perfectly innocent life on their conscience, and who will receive the Blessed Sacrament, in an act of terrible sacrilege, without a second thought? I’d be willing to bet it’s more than a handful.
Please God that I am wrong, but I strongly suspect I am not.
Neo-Catholics, Water Carriers of the Revolution January 9, 2017Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, asshatery, Basics, disaster, error, family, General Catholic, horror, Latin Mass, rank stupidity, Sacraments, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, the struggle for the Church.
Quite a stinging, but very much timely and on point video from Michael Matt. A couple of people sent this to me over the weekend, but I’d already seen it – you have to get up pretty early to get the jump on ol’ Tantumblogo. Hopefully that doesn’t mean everyone’s already seen it – I hate to be redundant. But if it’s good enough to watch once, it’s good enough to watch again, amiright?
I have to say, I’ve never seen a “gathering rite” as Matt relates. I have, however, seen much abominable behavior prior to, during, and after Mass, including loud, rude conversation, total lack of prayer and devotion, wholly inappropriate attire, and various forms of roughhousing and grabass playing. Sometimes that latter involves kids, sometimes not. This complete lack of reverence, devotion, and seeming understanding of what is about to take place during the Mass is one of the major factors that drove me to seek out more orthodox, pious alternatives; first, a Novus Ordo Latin Mass, and finally, the TLM.
Speaking of, I assisted at a nuptial Mass in the Novus Ordo world over the holidays. The parish was abominable, liturgically. Tabernacle shunted into a literal closet (it sat 8 in cramped fashion!). The church itself was a huge circle with the altar offset far to one side and a large stage for the priest and other “liturgical actors” to prance around on. Felt banners abounded. There was naturally a huge hot tub baptismal font. For a little while, I thought I was in San Antonio, but, no, it was just the Diocese of Fort Worth.
I will never comprehend what weird – one might even be tempted to say diabolical – psychology is at play in weddings (and not just Catholic ones), where it seems like a contest among the young women invited to attend to be the most scantily, inappropriately dressed woman there. It almost seems like a passive-aggressive attempt by young, single women (and some not so young, or single) to upstage the bride by drawing attention to themselves through revealing clothing. The laughable part was, it was quite cold that night by Texas standards, about 33 degrees with a brisk north wind. My wife, always seeking the charitable explanation, opined that these fit-for-Tinder dresses might be the only ones they own. I’m tempted to call BS on that, but, then again, I’ve seen similar at more than a few funerals, so maybe there’s something to it.
Folks at the wedding Mass at least tried to keep the conversation down to a dull roar, but far louder than one might see in, say, a movie theater. That’s the worst part, these people have been deliberately and carefully formed to regard assisting at Mass, being in the Eucharistic Presence of the Second Person of the Holy Trinity, to be of LESS significance, and deserving of less decorum, than one might find in a theater or upscale restaurant. It’s not just St. Paul – prior to an ordination Mass here in the Diocese of Dallas, when the Cathedral was jam packed, I got congratulated by a media photographer for being the only one of the thousand odd people there on their knees, praying prior to the Mass. He was Eastern Orthodox and blown away by the lack of reverence for the Blessed Sacrament and the unbelievably powerful transformation about to take place in men given a supernatural Grace beyond human comprehension, and by the boorishness of those in attendance.
I’m sure we all have similar stories. Too many to share. When we wonder how Francis could be doing what he’s doing, and all the long years of abuse, error, and even outright heresy committed by so many in the Church, including every one of his predecessors dating back to Paul VI, at least, all we have to realize is, they radically, cruelly, heartlessly changed the Mass. Heck, they upended it, turned it inside out, turned the sublime into the banal and showed a billion odd Catholics and the entire world that literally nothing at all was sacred in the brave new post-conciliar world.
Given that, nothing should really surprise us. The way from the Church as it was prior to the Council to where it is today, near schism and potential doctrinal collapse, was paved very carefully and deliberately. I think we have to recognize that even some of Francis “conservative” predecessors played a substantial role in that construction project. I am far from certain how we get back to the way things were, or some new reality based on the Church as it must be, but I do know the restoration of the Mass of Ages is absolutely central to that project, and, indeed, it cannot occur without the return of the TLM as the regular, everyday, normative Mass for the entire Church.
Francis Fave Spadaro: Adultery Is a Moral Duty! December 7, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in different religion, disaster, error, General Catholic, horror, Revolution, Sacraments, scandals, secularism, self-serving, the struggle for the Church, unbelievable BS.
That’s plainly what his reasoning in an interview given in the amateur liberal Catholic website Crux points to. Asked whether those persisting in extramarital unions would have to refrain from sex in order to receive the Blessed Sacrament, possibly Francis’ closest confidant and advisor Antonio Spadaro said, in some cases, they may be permitted to continue in adulterous acts and still receive the Blessed Sacrament, if they thought a “worse evil”would result. In answering thus, Spadaro has elevated adultery to a moral duty, if some “worse evil” is to be avoided.
This is precisely the kind of anti-Christ illogic that flows from Amoris Laetitia’s direct assault on Church Doctrine, attempting to overturn Christ’s direct command with flawed, diabolically-inspired reasoning:
…..Fr Spadaro was asked whether he thought the divorced and remarried could receive Communion if still in a sexual relationship. Fr Spadaro’s answer was startling – partly because he seemed to think the answer was yes, and partly because of his reasoning.
He explained that sometimes the remarried could “be asked to take on the challenge of living in continence”. This is, of course, the only path to the Eucharist which Catholic doctrine allows. But Fr Spadaro asserted that “this option may not be practicable”. And he then said that someone might “believe they would fall into a worse error”. That is, not sleeping with one’s new partner would be worse than sleeping with them. Hence, it could be a moral obligation to sleep with them. [Folks, he HAS to say this, because Communion for adulterers is untenable unless they are allowed to continue the adultery. I’ve said before, this is exactly like the contraception ploy of the late 60s, they present it as an rare exception accompanied by spiritual intervention, but know in the back of their minds this will be naught but a 100% removal of adultery from the list of practical mortal sins. They won’t declare such, but that will be the effect. And that is promotion of heresy without the slightest doubt.]
In short, a papal adviser has said that extramarital sex could be a moral duty.
This is more interesting, and more worrying, than any number of anonymous accounts and Tolkien-themed screenshots. The Church teachesthat God always gives us enough grace to follow His will. She also teaches that some acts – extramarital sex among them – are never justified, whatever the situation.
I don’t see how Fr Spadaro’s words can be reconciled with these well-established truths. (Unless he means to say “believes erroneously“, but nothing in his words indicates that.)
If Spadaro is saying this, if he believes this, then it is a virtual certitude that Franky George Bergoglio does, as well. These two have been peas in a pod going back years, well into Francis’ Argentinian days, and there are few closer to the Bishop of Rome.
The other matter – could this be something said accidentally, because of a problem speaking English as a second language? It’s a possibility, but what Spadaro puts forth is EXACTLY the point Francis has been driving at all along with his doctrine of false mercy, pitting Catholic Truth against a conception of mercy very appealing to the world, but extremely disconnected from the constant belief and practice of the Faith. Logically speaking, given Francis’ obvious push to permit manifest adulterers, whether civilly remarried or not, to receive the Blessed Sacrament, and since abstaining from the marital act would almost certainly cause many of these second relationships to shatter, it is logically consistent for Spadaro to advance the notion that continued adultery would be a “moral duty” to avoid the “worse” evil of another divorce or breakup. This is a total inversion of the Truth, of course, but also very revealing. It reveals the intent is not merely to permit, out of some misguided sense of mercy (a “mercy” which would have the effect of putting millions of souls at the gravest risk of eternal hellfire), civilly remarried Catholics to receive the Blessed Sacrament, but it is to upend, or, more accurately, invert, the entire moral Doctrine of the Faith.
Some people have had the honesty and audacity to point this out for years. Some are only just coming around to this realization. But as the evidence accumulates, this veneer of “mercy” wears increasingly thin, and more and more people are realizing the consequences of what Francis is driving at. And with another synod in the offing for the coming year, we can expect the assault on the Faith ton continue.
Please pray for Cardinal Burke and his allies, that they will have the strength to drive the examination of Francis’ errors (can they be doubted as such any more?) to the conclusion God desires. May God have mercy on our Church, and on us all. We are in circumstances that are just unbelievable.
Good post on preparation for the coming spiritual war here at Non Veni Pacem. I am gratified to see that Cardinal Burke is claiming that refusal to ask the dubia is being taken as admission of error. I also agree with the thrust of the post, that the time is coming that those who reject the errors being promoted by the Bishop of Rome will be castigated by ostensible Catholics and that this schism will break out into the open, probably in the coming year. We need to be getting ready for some real suffering NOW, because it is coming in a hurry.
How to Amend a Sacrilegious Marriage October 17, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, family, General Catholic, Grace, Interior Life, reading, Sacraments, Society, Tradition, Virtue.
I’m reading a neat little 90 year old book called Plain Talks on Marriage by Fr. Fulgence Meyer OFM. Fr. Meyer addresses a point that is often overlooked, given the many problems afflicting marriage in the Church today (and the growing assaults on marriage coming even from the Vatican itself), but which may be even more widespread a phenomenon in this day and age than divorce and remarriage or infidelity.
The problem is reception of the Sacrament of Marriage in an unworthy, sacrilegious manner, due to circumstances Fr. Meyer outlines below. He also advises how one can amend for such an unworthy reception of the Sacrament, which is, after all, equal to Baptism, Confirmation, and even the Eucharist in nature.
From pp. 32-4:
You say……..that you have been married in keeping with the requirements of the Church; you were married, perhaps, with considerable ceremony. Were you in the state of Grace when you married? Matrimony is a Sacrament of the living, and the recipient must not be conscious of an unforgiven mortal sin. There are those who before marriage, in the period of courtship, sin flagrantly with each other by indulging in, or allowing, improprieties, indecent liberties, and shocking intimacies. When they go to Confession before marriage, they are ashamed or too proud to admit these mortal sins. They willfully make an invalid Confession, receive Holy Communion unworthily, and are married validly, indeed, yet sacrilegiously. No wonder that they do not receive the grace of the sacrament, and that their married life is unhappy in consequence. They started it out altogether wrong, even with the curse of God. [One wonders how many failed marriages, subsequent divorces, and then even remarriages, have started out in this failed way as the couples involved were fornicating prior to marriage and never confessed the sin, and even received the Sacrament unworthily and sacrilegiously? I suspect it is a huge source of the calamity that has befallen Catholic marriage.] What are they to do to set matters right?
All they need to do is to make a good general Confession covering the entire period from their last worthy Confession to the present time. This Confession is not at all hard for those who have the will to get back to God. The priests will give you what help you need, supposing you are in this plight. And do not believe you are the first one to tell this story to the priest. He has heard it often before, and he will hear it again in the future. Human nature is the same everywhere and at all times. So take heart and make a clean breast of it in the spirit of true and humble contrition. Then, when you receive absolution, you will get not only the graces of holy penance, but also those of matrimony. They have been and are only suspended, waiting for the hindrance of mortal sin to be removed from your soul. No sooner the hindrance is gone, the suspension will cease, and the graces of marriage will flood, strengthen and rejoice your soul. [And, almost certainly, dramatically improve the marriage in question as those Graces long denied flood in to work their supernatural effects]
We live in really messed up times. Practically the entire world – “friends,” peers, media, government, the demons, etc. – scream at us from a very early age to do really bad things unless one is among the very few lucky ones to have been an early homeschooler, or somehow raised by exceptionally pious and attentive parents. I know I certainly did fall for a lot of lies the world peddles, and they seriously messed me up.
But one of the infinite number of wonderful aspects of our God is that He forgives totally, and is a an infinitely generous giver. Once we have true contrition and make a good confession, He will flood ourselves with graces and gifts totally unearned by us, and impossible to repay, but He will send them all the same. They can turn around situations that seem impossible to repair by human means. I’ve certainly seen that happen more than once. Don’t give up!
And don’t ever let some false authority figure in the Church tell you that divorce is OK, that’s it’s not that bad, that the Church (re: Franky) is providing a “do-over,” that God “understands,” and all the similar lies. Go to Confession, trust in God, and pray! That is the best way to a happy life, not serial divorce/civil remarriage and the carousel of degrading use of the marital faculties that involves.
May God have mercy on all those experiencing marital pain, and who need the cleansing regeneration of Confession.
A couple of great videos for you July 6, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in Art and Architecture, awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, Domestic Church, Father Rodriguez, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, history, Holy suffering, Interior Life, manhood, Sacraments, sanctity, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
JMJHFProductions continues to post very helpful catechetical material from Fr. Michael Rodriguez, a good priest who continues to be sadly persecuted for his adherence to the constant belief and practice of the Faith. I posted a few weeks ago a video from Fr. Rodriguez on how to pray the Holy Rosary. Intended for children, I found a great deal of benefit in that presentation. Now, Fr. Rodriguez has given a class to the same audience on making a good Confession. While acknowledging that some of the material is very basic, given the deplorable state of catechesis in the Church today (much of the present audience excepted, of course), perhaps this video is all the more helpful for its simplicity.
So many Catholics today, though they may be rich in years, have a childish understanding of the Faith, if they have one at all. Even the most poorly formed adult can easily understand the nature of Confession and the importance of making a good one from this video.
I think even well-formed adults will, however, find much of benefit here:
To continue to support this kind of very solid caechesis, donations can be sent to:
St. Vincent Ferrer Foundation of Texas
5628 Rosa Ave.
El Paso, TX 79905
Phone # (915) 500-3025
If you want to support the family run lay apostolate that makes these great videos, please specify the donation is for JMJHF Productions.
Now for something completely different, a blast from the Catholic past, a short video giving a brief and loving biography of Venerable Pope Pius XII. There is much Catholic greatness to be gleaned below; it is almost impossible to believe that these scenes of piety, reverence, and devotion existed within living memory of today:
Contrast the celebration of the Holy Year 1950 with the pathetic denouement that is the “Year of Mercy.”
Watch out for anti-Catholic atheists in the comments if you go to Youtube. They even parrot the now completely debunked claims that Pius XII ordered prayers offered in celebration of Hitler’s birthday.
Yes, I said atrocities. What else can you say when the man given the office of the Chair of Peter, chosen to be Christ’s sweet vicar on earth, accompanied by unimaginable torrents of Grace if he would only avail himself of them, instead of adhering to his own, stupid will, says that priests should butt out of people’s moral lives?
At a general audience after the conference, the Pope was asked about how to balance Church teaching on the indissolubility of marriage while welcoming Catholics who are divorced and remarried.
Francis replied that neither “rigorism nor laxity” was the right response. “The Gospel chooses another way: welcoming, accompanying, integrating, discerning, without putting our noses in the ‘moral life’ of other people,” he said.
Is that not an atrocious statement? Is it not, at some fundamental level, a profoundly anti-Catholic statement? No amount of burying our heads in the sand or attempts at explanation can even begin to limit the damage a statement like this causes.
In a sense, however, Francis is forced into such statements by his own ideology. If the divorced and remarried – living, in many cases, manifestly immoral lives, which much blame for the original divorce, and thoroughly lacking any real repentance in that regard – are to be allowed to receive the Blessed Sacrament, to carry on as if they ARE attempting to lead solid, moral lives, then of course priests would have to totally ignore the myriad moral failings of many of their sheep, and simply pretend that all is just peachy.
This is not Catholicism, however. It is straight up protestantism, as we saw last week. In order to continue his great project in remaking the Church in the light of Martin Luther and Immanuel Kant, such statements become inevitable. Confession goes out the window, unless it is “confession” for fashionable, worldly “corporate sins,” like poverty or supposed environmental degradation.
We also see just how banal and morally corrupt this “accompaniment” proclaimed by Francis really is. It’s nothing but “I’m OK You’re OK We’re All OK” encounter therapy writ large – a perfect embodiment of the progressive zeitgeist of which Francis is so fervent an acolyte.
But that’s not all! After all, there are seven days in a week, and Francis can apparently hardly let one go by without some assault on the Faith or another. To that end, Francis declared how he decapitates opposition from “ultraconservatives” and had some – for a change – interesting things to say about Pope Benedict’s unprecedented abdication:
When asked how he was getting along with the “ultra-Conservatives,” Pope Francis – without challenging this depreciative description of the ostensibly orthodox part of the prelates – claims that “they say ‘no’ to everything” in relation to his own proposed reforms. As reported by La Nacion, he more specifically says:
“They do their work, I do mine. I want an open and understanding Church which accompanies the wounded families. They say ‘no’ to everything. I continue my path without being sidetracked. I do not behead people [sic]. I never have liked it. Let me repeat: I reject conflict.” He [Pope Francis] concluded with a conspicuous smile: “You remove a nail by applying pressure upwards. Or you tranquilize them, put them to the side, when they reach retirement age.” [emphasis added] [Or you force them out, on thoroughly specious, if convenient, grounds, as in the case of Bishop Robert Finn, among others]
At least he had the wherewithal to admit, though not in so many words, that he views the most orthodox, “conservative” prelates as his ideological opponents, to be anesthetized as events permit.
Now, to those comments on Pope Benedict:
He was a revolutionary. In the meeting with cardinals, shortly before the March 2013 Conclave, he told us that one of us was going to be the next pope and that he did not know his name. His generosity was unparalleled. His resignation brought to light all of the Church’s problems. His resignation had nothing to do with personal issues. It was an act of government – his last act of government. [emphasis added]
Here, Francis appears to be slamming the door on the hypothesis of Archbishop Georg Ganswein, Benedict’s long-time aid, who recently posited that maybe there was a sort of duarchy working in the papacy with his boss’s abdication. That is, Francis was the “active” pope, while Benedict was the contemplative one. This is, of course, nonsense, and would completely obliterate the notion of papacy as it has always been understood by the Church. I was really shocked to read such doctrinal shlock from a guy like Ganswein who is supposed to be very bright and at least fairly orthodox – it only confirmed for me either how desperate the guy is, or how deep the rot has become.
Now, regarding Francis’ claim that Benedict’s abdication had nothing to do with personal issues – that certainly fits in with my surmise from the moment this abdication was announced. I also agree the abdication was a revolutionary act, in at least two senses. It was unprecedented, yes (Pope Celestine was a very different case), but it was also revolutionary in what it subsequently unleashed.
One could almost read from the above that Pope Benedict’s abdication was a final, deliberate surrender to the forces he had opposed for 40+ years, ever since the young, radical theologian at Vatican II realized the chaos and destruction he had helped unleash (thus, the “generosity”). From Francis’ standpoint, Benedict’s relative orthodoxy would have been the source of all the Church’s problems. His abdication, then, revealed the total failure of the restorationist project, in Francis’ mind, perhaps. Of course, it is very convenient for Francis to imply that Benedict’s last act was, indeed, a surrender to the progressive faction of the Church.
We’ll see if there are subsequent revelations. One thing progressives love to do is to gloat when victorious. That’s how we found out about the “St. Gallen group” in the first place. Is the above a little bit of revelation from Francis, or him just talking nonsense again? I have my own beliefs, obviously, but ultimately I leave it to you to decide.
I have another question for you readers – do you find the coverage of Francis helpful, maddening, pointless, or? I’m of two minds – while I feel we now know this man to a T, and further revelations may only serve to aggravate, at the same time, it’s hard to turn away from a car wreck, you know? Plus, it is important, at least for the record, for someone, anyone, to say “this is wrong,” or “this is not Catholic.” But, I don’t want to be boring, beat you down, or, God forbid, cause people to lose faith.
This is an important point, maybe too important to leave appended to the end of a long post. I may repost this as a stand alone tomorrow. I do appreciate your input. I can’t guarantee it will result in any change, but I will absolutely consider your comments seriously.
Every week a new low for Francis June 17, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, disaster, error, Francis, General Catholic, horror, pr stunts, Revolution, Sacraments, scandals, self-serving, sickness, Society, the struggle for the Church, unbelievable BS.
Sorry I’ve been away from the blog all week. That could not be helped, for a variety of reasons.
I guess I waited till the right day to blog (or maybe the wrong one) given Francis’ twin disastrous statements of yesterday, June 16. In them, as I’m certain you’re already aware, Francis both declared that the great majority (60%, 70%, 80%, 99.999%?!?) of sacramental marriages are null, and that many cohabitations are “real marriages.” As he did a week ago, Francis has inverted the truth and elevated falsehood in its place:
Pope Francis said Thursday that the great majority of sacramental marriages today are not valid, because couples do not enter into them with a proper understanding of permanence and commitment…….
……“We live in a culture of the provisional,” the Pope said in impromptu remarks June 16. After addressing the Diocese of Rome’s pastoral congress, he held a question-and-answer session……
………“It’s provisional, and because of this the great majority of our sacramental marriages are null. Because they say “yes, for the rest of my life!” but they don’t know what they are saying. Because they have a different culture. They say it, they have good will, but they don’t know.”……
………He said that in Argentina’s northeast countryside, couples have a child and live together. They have a civil wedding when the child goes to school, and when they become grandparents they “get married religiously.” [And what did Francis do to break this pattern, as primate of Argentina? Or did he just blithely go along, as a force somehow not only out of his control, but one to be co-opted to the end of radically changing the Church along the leftist-inspired lines he has always sought?]
“It’s a superstition, because marriage frightens the husband. It’s a superstition we have to overcome,” the Pope said. “I’ve seen a lot of fidelity in these cohabitations, and I am sure that this is a real marriage, they have the grace of a real marriage because of their fidelity, but there are local superstitions, etc.”
Look at what he’s saying: sacramental marriage = falsity/unreality, cohabitation = reality/genuineness/truth. Gotcha. It hasn’t taken as long as I thought for the mask to fully drop.
There has been a flood of commentary already, some of it edifying, some of it embarrassing in still refusing to see the truth of this papacy, which is evolving – sorry, has evolved – into nothing short of a direct, open assault on the entire Doctrine of the Faith (as traditional critics have maintained from the very beginning, and for which they have earned nothing but opprobrium from neo-Catholics).
I do find Rorate’s coverage particularly helpful, in that they show how previous documents of the pontificate of Franky George Bergoglio have paved the way for exactly the kind of outrageous, one might even say diabolical, statement made yesterday. Not only that, but Rorate provides a concrete example of how Francis has put this error into practice in the past, basically encouraging a family member to contract a scandalous, adulterous civil union outside the Church with a man who was part of a valid Church marriage.
I also found this summary from One Peter Five very powerful:
If the pope’s view is that 50 percent of Catholic marriages are invalid, it is not just an insult to our natural human ability to marry, but also an insult to St. Paul, who said that the moral law is written on men’s hearts. And it’s an insult to God’s grace to imagine that our own age is somehow different, that we cannot depend on God’s help to live out the vocations He gives us.
How many insults can we stand? Last week, Francis turned the Magisterium on its head by declaring clear doctrinal formulations to be heretical, this week, he does the same for the Sacrament of Marriage. This man is ripping the Doctrine of the Faith to shreds, and at the same time, encouraging the mass spread of moral misery by working to convince those in troubled marriages to give up. How many will go ahead and get divorced now, who might have fought through, because of these horrendous statements? As always, it is the children who will suffer the most for leftist folly.
One must wonder if a fair number of US bishops and diocesan courtesans are not now jumping up and down for joy, seeing their process of declaring virtually every marriage that ends in civil divorce annulled vindicated? The horror is, what was once clearly recognized as an abuse even a few short years ago, is now preached from the housetops of Sancta Marthae in Rome as the Lord’s own truth, even though it isn’t, and never could be.
I don’t know what will be left of the Church by the time this man and his successor(s) are finished, but it wont’ be much. If we didn’t have Our Blessed Lord’s promise to always preserve the Church, I would be given to despair.
And so the process started at Vatican II drives towards its inexorable conclusion. May God have mercy on us all.
Comments closed on this post. Just because Francis is nuts and likely evil doesn’t mean he’s not the pope – but even if that were somehow in question, who, precisely, can make that judgment? And don’t quote Bellarmine to me, you are still the one doing the judging. Elevating oneself to his formal judge (not just of specific acts, or even agendas, but of what he is, what he constitutes, what office he holds or loses) is something I will never arrogate to myself. You may disagree………but not here. At least not anymore. I will not allow this blog to be a vehicle for sede propaganda, and would rather shut down all comments or cease blogging than allow it to become so.
First, last, and only warning, or bannings will begin. I don’t care what you think about my policy, that’s it.
We have been blessed by a particular “problem” at our local FSSP parish. This church has grown like wildfire since it moved out of the convent and into its own facility, a converted Korean Methodist church that was rundown when bought but which has been restored to something quite nice. Since that time, roughly the beginning of 2010, the parish has at least doubled in attendance, with a fourth Sunday Mass added recently and more and more new faces showing up every week.
I don’t have updates on the latest Sunday attendance figures over Holy Week but I’m quite certain they are now surpassing 1000 souls per Sunday. That’s quite small by typical NO parish sizes, but makes our local parish perhaps the largest, in terms of weekly attendance, traditional parish in the world.
Mind, this is after two priests were permanently assigned to a parish in Fort Worth, 30 miles away, and two priests are also in Tyler, 90 miles away. The three priests at our parish are swamped, and there is talk of bringing in a fourth.
Which gets to my question – is there an optimal size for traditional parishes? Traditional Catholic parishes are much more than just the Mass, they are the community, they are the intimate involvement of the priests in every level of catechesis, they are Sacraments always offered by priests and not deacons, they are communities where the priests try to visit the homes of every parishioner at least once (and generally, more than that). This is to say, a priest at a traditional parish is a true father to the souls in his charge, attempting to know all the families at least a little bit and taking great concern over the state of their souls.
As such, at a certain size, no matter how many priests are assigned, can a traditional parish not outgrow itself? Would it not be better to build a new parish to split some of the congregation off? Is that not what the Church did for centuries? And weren’t most parishes, outside the largest urban areas, smaller in attendance than the (it must be said) ludicrous situations we have today, where two priests supposedly supply pastoral care to a notional 15,000 families?
To me, the situation in Dallas is getting to the point where serious consideration for a second traditional parish should be underway. It is not unforeseeable that the current parish could have 2000 people assisting on a given Sunday within a decade, after the new church gets built (as we’ve outgrown the one acquired in 2010). Even with 3 confessionals, can you imagine the lines?!
Add to that the factor that many souls drive 20, 30, 50, even 100 miles to assist at Mass. Much of the parish attendance comes from the northern suburbs, and I’m positive that should a second Fraternity or other traditional parish open in Plano or McKinney, there would be no problem with attendance or funding. But would Bishop Farrell allow it? I keep hearing the words of a local diocesan (non-FSSP) priest ringing in my ears – “the Traditional Mass will never be offered in this diocese outside Mater Dei.”
What do you think? Do you agree that traditional parishes are best if they don’t grow beyond a certain size? Believe me, this is not a “I want this to myself” complaint, I constantly invite folks to Mater Dei, but I’m concerned that much of what makes a traditional parish special can be lost if it becomes too much of a behemoth. I think there is also a practical benefit in having more than one location, as there are more than a few folks who would assist at a TLM were it 10 minutes away, instead of 45 minutes to an hour. Might not four priests spread among 2 parishes not result in more folks assisting at the TLM than four priests at one parish? Isn’t bringing more souls back to the traditional practice of the Faith, and giving them the best shot at Heaven, the point of it all?
But really, it’s mine all MINE and I want you OUT!
Francis to extend SSPX faculties for Confession? April 13, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, episcopate, Francis, General Catholic, Interior Life, Sacraments, Spiritual Warfare, SSPX, the struggle for the Church, Tradition, Virtue.
Beats me. Nothing would surprise me anymore. It has long been said of Cardinal Mahony that while he is crazy liberal, he operated his diocese in a kind of “do what feels good” manner that also permitted some freedom of action even to orthodox Catholics. Perhaps Pope Francis is the same. While the below does not come from an unbiased source – it comes from the leader of the SSPX, Bishop Bernard Fellay – it is now reported that Francis intends to extend the faculties of the SSPX for Confession beyond the scarifying Year of Mercy:
Bishop Bernard Fellay, superior general of the SSPX, celebrated the Mass for Good Shepherd Sunday with his two Assistants General.A few days earlier he had met with Pope Francis during a very positive meeting which strengthened ties between the Holy See and the Society founded by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre. Despite the publication of the Post-Synodal Exhortation, which “makes us cry,” he revealed some “happiness” from the interview
The Pope confirmed that the SSPX was Catholic in his eyesHe confirmed that he never would condemn it
He confided that he wishes to expand the faculties of the SSPX, starting with the authorization of its priests to validly hear confession.
Finally, during the talks in Rome, Bishop Fellay was encouraged to establish a seminary in Italy.
Are heads exploding among the SSPX-SO? I have no idea. If Francis is succeeded by a similarly progressive pontiff, will he be as inclined to a go-go mentality? The concern of the SSPX-SO has always been that any “deal” with “modernist Rome” would inevitably lead to an undermining of the SSPX’s mission and immediate attempts at co-opting by the forces of modernism. Given the experience of Campos, that’s not a totally unfounded fear, but we’re still miles away from that. I have heard from a number of folks, however, who wonder if it might not paradoxically take a very liberal pope, one not “hung up” on doctrinal definitions and issues of authority and mission, to bring about a reconciliation with the SSPX.
Wonders never cease, I suppose. Or weird stuff happens. h/t reader Tim