Catechism of the Catholic Church (675)
'Before Christ’s second coming the Church must pass through a final trial that will shake the faith of many believers. The persecution that accompanies her pilgrimage on earth will unveil the “mystery of iniquity” in the form of a religious deception offering men an apparent solution to their problems at the price of apostasy from the truth. The supreme religious deception is that of the Antichrist, a pseudo-messianism by which man glorifies himself in place of God and of his Messiah come in the flesh.' ~ Catechism of the Catholic Church (675)
Tuesday, 27 September 2016
Tuesday, 13 September 2016
At considerable risk to themselves, this request was made by persons of good will towards the Pope and in good faith. Since then, Fr Hunwicke has made it quite clear that the response to this letter from certain quarters has been one of intimidation. This is very distressing and alarming not merely because of the intimidation itself but because the intimidation is being applied before the 'new policy' or 'direction' has even been 'rolled out'.
If priests and theologians experience some kind of censure or reproach now, what kind of pressures might be applied when the Bergoglian rock of pastoral devastation starts careering down the hill with - as we know such things do - ever-increasing velocity?
Already, it appears that 'The Joy of Love' will be adopted, in all likelihood, by an unknown number of Argentine Bishops in what Pope Francis has described as the only possible interpretation of it for in his words, 'there are no other interpreations'. We can be sure that what takes place in Buenos Aires will not stay in Buenos Aires. Placing to one side for a moment the huge number of sacrilegious Communions and spiritual entropy which will be the natural result of the 'only possible interpretation' of the Pope's Exhortation, we must realise now how remarkably vulnerable are those priests - especially priests - who have made a stand in defence of Christ's own teaching and who will refuse to simply adopt the new thinking, if, indeed, it can even be called 'thinking'. For should not the new approach rather be called unthinking, careless, thoughtless or reckless? Worse, is it calculated?
Either way, this catastrophic move by the Pope not only endorses sacrilege. It does not only place souls at grave risk and lay waste to the teaching of Christ and the Pope's predecessors. It does not only light the touchpaper on the break-up of the Catholic Church into differing regions and national Churches. It also will inevitably inflict upon priests censure for doing the Lord's will. It has the potential to both empty seminaries and throttle the Priesthood.
Bishops and Cardinals, should any of you read this, and I know its unlikely...
It gives me no pleasure whatsoever to remind those set over us in authority who are Successors of the Apostles, not mere place men, that a concerted effort was made by the lay faithful for you to make your displeasure publicly felt at second stage of the Synod on the Family. For since March 17th 2013, yes just four days after his election to the Chair of Peter, Pope Francis has set out his programme of destructive 'reform' of the Catholic Church causing rising consternation ever since. The laity - and I among them - requested in the form of a petition that you leave the Synod Hall so that you would not lend legitimacy to the expensive charade of which you were a part.
We knew very well that the Pope was using you and the entire Synod process in order to lend an air of false collegiality to his own plans for the wholesale destruction of the Christian order, affecting the Sacraments, violating the sanctity of Marriage, placing the Family in jeopardy and promoting the desecration of the Holy Eucharist. Quite simply the Synod was a manipulation from beginning to end. We took a fair bit of criticism from others for that stance, but we knew very well that you were being played. We anticipated that the Synod was an exercise in garnering the kind of official-sounding semi-consent with caveats necessary for the Church to be raped. We knew that your views were not required, your presence only a fig-leaf covering the naked ambition - the ambition of which even he himself has obliquely spoken - of the Pope to radically alter the Church's teachings via 'pastoral practise' under the guise of pastoral mercy.
There is no point in saying we told you so, but...
Now behold how potentially defenseless are Christ's priests in the coming battle and how very vulnerable they are if law breaks down and is 'pastorally' dissolved from the top down. Yes, like many of you, we too have hoped and prayed most earnestly that the Pope will renege on his systematic programme aimed at laying the axe to the very foundations of the Catholic Church but most of us have realised long ago that this is a hope in vain. The Pope as of yesterday, but, in reality long before, stands in direct opposition to Jesus Christ. That's the situation. It is completely understandable that Cardinals and Bishops called to defend Christ's flock and the whole truth of the Gospel decided to postpone the battle, but not understandable that you would be so naive as to think the battle could be anything but postponed or that the Exhortation would be anything but a clever manipulation of the Church's Law, though, of course, nobody could have foreseen the whole strategy finding its most destructive element in a single footnote. Yes, the battle was postponed at the Synod but it could not be postponed indefinitely. That battle is now here, in your face, whether we like it or not.
For truly, the question the lay faithful asked at the Synod on the Family was really this: Who will rise up for Jesus Christ against the evildoers who eat up his people like so much bread?
That was why we asked you to leave the Synod Hall, not as an act of rebellion against the authority of the Pope but as an act of fidelity to Jesus Christ and His Gospel because we knew another opportunity may not arise. Letters, petitions, words, interviews...sorry, but the 'reformers' are laughing! They thinks they hold all the cards but are you not Apostles of Jesus Christ the Lord? Has power and authority not been given to you, Bishops and Cardinals?
Please in the name of all that is holy, I beg you, Bishops and Cardinals, fight for Jesus Christ and for the Truth. Pope Francis has made plain his intent to endorse, from the highest office of the Catholic Church, the violation of the holy doctrines of the Church, the teaching of Christ Himself, the Most Holy Eucharist, Marriage and the Family. He must be stopped from demolishing the Church. You must challenge him and challenge him publicly. You, alone, have the authority to do this. Those who are of Christ's flock will support you in this. The Eucharist must be defended. Marriage must be defended. Priests must be defended. Every Christian family needs you to speak out forcefully and to act to defend the Church. Every priest looking over his shoulder at his Ordinary will thank you. Every married person who takes the Gospel seriously will thank you. Will not Jesus Christ the Lord Himself thank you?!
At the stage at which we now are, with a perfect opportunity sadly missed at the Synod and disappearing into the horizon of history, as a lay man, I know not any longer what I seek Bishops and Cardinals to do or say, but know that the only thing the destroyers will take seriously is visible, audible defenders of Christ and His Bride who really mean it and whose respect for God is greater than their respect for men.
Please make known your opposition to the Pope's latest and most devastating assault on the Catholic Faith now. It is opposed by the Church Triumphant, be sure of this. It must be opposed by the Church Militant. You may not have been looking for this war but this war will find you. May it not find you hunkering down and pretending it is all going to go away. You may feel and say that the very last thing you wish to do is to damage the fragile unity of the Church but that unity is under massive assault from within, from the top. You must fight for Our Lord! You can now either defend the Church or desert Her in Her time of need. There is no middle ground. Those caught in no man's land will be spiritually annihilated for choosing comfort rather than Christ. If a hundred Bishops come forward to defend Christ we will be grateful. If fifty Bishops come forward to defend Christ we will be grateful. If ten come forward, we will be grateful. If just one comes forward to defend Christ, we will still be grateful. We pray that you will do and say what you must to honour your duty to Christ, to His Priests and to the millions of souls in the care of the Church. It is easy for me to say it. It is harder for you to do, but for this reason were you born, to bear witness to the Truth and everyone on the side of the Truth listens to His Voice, for His Voice is clear and rings louder than peals of thunder...
For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife, and they two shall be in one flesh. Therefore now they are not two, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let no man put asunder. They say to him: Why then did Moses command to give a bill of divorce, and to put away? He saith to them: Because Moses by reason of the hardness of your heart permitted you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so. And I say to you, that whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and he that shall marry her that is put away, committeth adultery.
Bishops and Cardinals can no longer simply watch and pass over Pope Francis's aggressive mutilation of the Gospel as if by doing so safeguards the unity of the Catholic Church when Pope Francis has, in an astonishing manner, declared war on the Deposit of Faith he was appointed to serve, preserve and uphold as the Vicar of Christ on Earth.
May the Lord give Bishops and Cardinals the strength and resolve to do whatever they can, with the authority given to them by Christ, to safeguard the Deposit of Faith first neglected, then denied, then tossed aside and now thrown into the gutter by the occupant of the Chair of Peter.
If the Successor of St Peter cannot bring himself to confirm and strengthen the brethren in anything but falsehood and error (and climate change), then you must confirm and strengthen the brethren in the Holy Faith. In order to do so, you must be heard clearly and loudly, over the howling of the wolves that threaten to tear Christ's flock, Christ's Church and Christ's priests to pieces.
Pray, pray, pray for those charged with such a grave and solemn duty in the Catholic Church that with wisdom and fortitude they will foster the unity of the Church in Christ in one Faith, one Lord and one Baptism. If our Shepherds do not confront and resist evil, we can be certain that evil will overtake them and Shepherds are never overtaken alone.
Monday, 12 September 2016
|The Holy Name of Mary|
So if an army of Bishops and Cardinals could rise up in one voice and oppose this as soon as possible, that would be just great.
The USA has just commemorated September 11th.
Have we just had our September 12th?
Monday, 5 September 2016
We can, I fear, thank God that St Teresa of Calcutta never had a blog or a Facebook account. That is not to say that these things, when used well are a waste of time, but Saints of contemplation and action don't need social media. Saints are saints in deed.
Mother Teresa seems to still have the capacity to cause a lot of people to fall over each other. Traditionalists say she was not traditional enough and criticise her for unorthodox sounding statements on inter-faith issues. Atheists just plain hate her because she was a nun who preached about Jesus Christ in word and deed. You could say atheists hate St Teresa of Calcutta in the same way they hate the Church or even God Himself.
Mother's big idea was in fact very simple and she maintained that what drove her mission was Matthew 25. That's pretty traditional. Matthew 25 deals with the Last Judgment. If you're going to have a mission statement, that's not a bad starting place to begin a mission. We can glean from this alone some important truths about her life.
Firstly, Mother Teresa both feared God and loved God. She took Jesus's words very seriously indeed. She clearly feared being consigned with the goats. She knew Jesus meant what He said about death and Judgement. She clearly loved Christ in the Eucharist, spending hours alone with Him. How many Catholics nowadays believe that stuff?
An image of Mother Teresa alone tells an accurate story of this nun who, in fact, refused to conform her life to her age both in the Church and the world. Notice that Mother Teresa wore a habit. Around her neck and clasped in her hands was the Cross. One attached to her habit and one a Rosary in her hands. Yes, Mother was a nun of the habit and the Rosary. During the 1980s these visible signs of religious life were not common at all with so many nuns discarding both their habits and their Rosaries in preference of yoga and jeans and a gospel of self-fulfilment. In terms of evangelisation, a habit really helps a nun. It identifies her as being dead to the world and alive to Christ, her spouse. Of course, this would be counter-productive if her life was marked by a lack of Christian virtue and charity. Of course, the opposite is the case. The reality is that her compassion and heroism puts the great majority of us to shame. Quite honestly the words 'Mother Teresa' make us feel generally guilty. That's because whether you're a traddie or not, the likelihood is that however holy you might be, you're almost certainly not as holy as Mother Teresa. You almost certainly make compromises with the World that Mother never would. You almost certainly have stored somewhere treasure on Earth that will pass, that Mother would never accept for herself. Her one treasure was Jesus Christ.
Mother Teresa's life pointed very explicitly to Jesus Christ. The charge that she was indifferent to other religions would be very valid had Mother Teresa ever stopped talking about Jesus and Mary, something she never did. The name of Jesus was never far from her lips. More than this she showed very clearly that Jesus Christ makes the difference in a religious life. Divine love made flesh enabled her to become an embodiment of divine love made flesh. Our religion is incarnational. No other religion can do that because no other religion believes that divine love was made flesh in Jesus Christ. No Hindu can replicate Christ's selfless love because no Hindu believes in Christ. Mother was never ashamed to speak of Jesus but wanted her life to be a witness to His love. She let her light shine and her light was Jesus, the Light of the World. How many 'liberal' nuns talk about Jesus and Mary? How many 'liberal' nuns talk about abortion?
The very words 'Mother Teresa' continue to embody selflessness and self-denial, love and compassion - a stubborn refusal to accept the horrendous poverty and evil surrounding her. In terms of iconography she became as powerful as other women of history but in an entirely different way.
Mother Teresa was a very radical and exciting vision of womanhood. First, she refused romantic love, she was an attractive youth. She took Jesus for her spouse. This is the same attitude taken by the early Christian female martyrs. Is that not traditional enough for traditionalists? It is that kind of thing that really angers the Devil and the atheists.
She rejected and trampled upon the world and saw in its glories so much rubbish. That sounds pretty traditional.
Almost alone, she single-handedly challenged governments to respond to her life, on poverty and abortion. Of course, they could not handle her challenge. She - with St John Paul II - was deemed to be a huge threat to the established order of the world and the ideological tyranny that was engulfing it.
She promoted and frequented the Sacrament of Penance. Her life was deeply penitential. That sounds pretty traditional.
She honoured the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass and saw it for what it is, the Most Holy Sacrifice of Jesus on Calvary, made present on the Altar. She attended that Mass, I believe, every single day that God gave her to.
She considered nothing to belong to her but everything belonging to God, most of all, her time. She considered time as precious, for the glory of God. She didn't kick back, take a day off, get a four pack of beer and watch the football.
Mother Teresa gave up all her possessions to conform her life to the same pattern of life as Christ. Is that not traditional enough for traditionalists? That's what St Francis did. That's what the Apostles did.
Mother Teresa spoke up in defence of the family. If Mother was still speaking now on Earth, do we really think there is any doubt as to how she would answer to a question on her thoughts about the Kasper proposal adopted so keenly by Pope Francis? She defended the unborn as often as she could. Do we have any doubt as to how she would respond - with delight or abject horror - to the idea that the Pope feels 'gratified' by the UN development goals which include access to abortion and artificial contraception? You can almost hear her condemnation of this from Heaven! Pope Francis can thank his lucky stars that this Saint is in Heaven - rather than speaking now on Earth, for what an earthquake that would be among the College of Cardinals.
I could write so much more but as well as the unsurprising hatred expressed towards this brave, heroic, incredible woman, deeply in love with Christ, from atheists, I have seen some very dismissive things written of her by traditionalist Catholics. I do understand their reasons in what appears to be some sketchy ecumenical ideas, but the manner in which they do so seems so arrogant in dismissing both her life and her message. I am reminded of the two thieves on the Cross. To her critics: Have you no fear of God? Have you no thought that it is very likely indeed that she is on the other side of the veil of this life to answer your arrogance and that her defender and avenger is very likely Christ the Lord?
May the Lord rebuke you who mock her! Imitate her for one day. See if you can! Sell everything you own and give it to the poor. See if you can! Be holy and humble of heart. See if you can! Become famous not for your fine sounding words but for your deeds, for only for loving the poor and dying and for doing good while wearing the sign of your Christian identity. See if you can! Speak to every single person you meet about Jesus. See if you can! Be considered a fool for Christ. See if you can! Put every single person you meet above yourself and your own needs. See if you can! Allow Christ to transform your life into a living witness to the love of God so that every person you meet believes they are in the presence of a living Saint, someone who loves the other person with Christ-like tenderness. See if you can! Then, when you have done all that, maybe, just maybe you can reproach Mother for some things you would do or say very differently, but be very careful, along that road, the royal road of the Cross, you might fall and give way to any number of temptations since the Devil sees you as a signal threat to his domain and his power over souls.
Our new Saint may be a very 'Vatican II' Saint, but she's also a Saint who continues through her words and her deeds to rebuke the spirit of that Council that has seen the Eucharist neglected and unloved, the habit thrown away, the religious life trivialised, true prayer discarded, sacrifice and self-denial exchanged for self-indulgence and almost every modern relativistic belief surrendered to in exchange for the narrow road and the Gospel of Our Lord.
May she intercede for the Church and for our torn and tattered world today from her place in Heaven, where I fully believe she is, with St John Paul II. May their prayers help to defend the Family, Marriage, the Blessed Sacrament from defilement and sacrilege, the unborn, the poor, the outcast and the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church!