Monday 23 January 2017

That's Amoris

Thank you to a friend who helped me to turn some PowerPoint slides into a video.

I hope it brings a little cheer to clergy and faithful alike - especially among the much-criticised Curia.

Best turn the volume down in case 'the boss overhears', mind.

Tuesday 17 January 2017

Pray for Malta's Catholic Priests...

Let us implore for God's help and protection of all Catholic priests in Malta, who believe, quite rightly, that they are custodians of the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar and implore Christ, 
Our Blessed Lady and the Saints that the Bishops of Malta and Gozo 
will reverse their terrible decision and repent of their apostasy.

For there is no other word for it.

It is apostasy.

Neither is there justification to be found anywhere in the Catholic Faith for it.

The Times of Malta covers the story that one of the Bishops has said...

"I am saddened by the reaction from certain quarters and invite priests who have concerns to come forward and discuss them directly with us."

Are priests concerned? Oh yes! As well they should be, since this is not only a dereliction of the Bishops' duty to teach the Apostolic Faith, not only a diabolical invitation to commit sacrilege issued to the entire Catholic nation of Malta, but an astonishing violation of the sacred conscience of every Catholic priest in Malta. And there are many of them!

May they follow their conscience and resist this directive from the Bishops of Malta and Gozo and may Christ the Lord, His Blessed Mother and the Martyrs who died for the defence of marriage and the Most Holy Eucharist intercede for them.

The Bishops have made a statement and placed it into the public domain which makes their apostasy from the Faith official. They have done this publicly. How dare they try to restrain priests from directly and publicly opposing them, how dare seek to coerce Maltese Priests to seek their collaboration, when they have publicly dumped their priests into a conflict between following Christ and following them?

They wish for compliance and obedience simply because of their rank. May they be met with the public, stern opposition they deserve. They have endorsed sacrilege in a public manner. How dare they even hope that they will not be criticised in the manner in which they have done so: publicly?! 

Every priest in Malta who loves and desires to see respected and honoured the Most Holy Sacrament, who prays that Jesus Christ is never violated in such manner as the Bishops endorse, who do not wish death for the sinner, but that the sinner may find Life Eternal, now finds himself in the position to choose to follow the Bishop's request or defend Jesus Christ our Lord and the souls placed in their care. May they not be cowed into silence or acquiescence by these cowardly Bishops who have volunteered to place themselves on the path to eternal perdition. May they be granted the courage necessary and support from the laity and their confreres which they merit and deserve.

The Maltese Bishops may be "saddened" that priests are publicly demanding that this decision be reversed and that they revoke their document, but they seem to think nothing of the crushing of the consciences of their priests, over whom they are set in authority and who are in their care, who they are meant to themselves protect with paternal love and great prudence. That is, for those priests, not simply "saddening" but leaves them most assuredly with the bitter taste of abject betrayal by those placed over them because that is precisely what it is. Sacrilege brings spiritual death to the one who commits it. Apostasy brings spiritual death and brings down the just anger of God upon the one who commits it!

'Silence' is a best-selling book and a flop of a Hollywood film. It has no place in the Catholic Church. If the Bishops had wanted 'silence' they should have thought twice about publicly declaring themselves to be sworn agents of the Devil, declaring themselves anti-Christ. They may protest about such language, but they cannot be pro-sacrilege and for Christ. They cannot serve Christ and His adversary and say they are for Christ. They have chosen, in a public and brazen manner to set out their stall. In a public manner, may they be opposed and in a public manner, may they revoke their outrageous decision. They cannot declare war on the consciences of their priests and upon their very ministry to the Faithful and request silence after the declaration. These Bishops need to be told publicly...

How dare you discard with such merciless ease the consciences of the Priests in your care and as an afterthought, request silence on their part!?

How dare you invite the Faithful to commit sacrilege!?

Have you no fear of God at all!?

You did not consult with the clergy on this matter before you went ahead and published this vile, blasphemous document and now you want your clergy to consult with you concerning its implementation?

What world do these Bishops inhabit?

You are prepared to lose your souls.

Have you both lost your minds also!

Monday 16 January 2017

Trouble in Paradise

'Love to be the Mother of God but right now its humanly impossible'.
Somebody needs to talk to the Bishops Conference of Malta and Gozo about what we Catholics actually believe - and that which they have repudiated - since they announced their private apostasy from the Catholic Faith in a public manner.

All who wish to attain to Salvation must know, including Bishops, that while God respects our free will we are subject to His Commandments. There are no situations in which we are released from the binding nature of the moral law upon our conscience. There may indeed be situations in which there are mitigating factors in our guilt, yes plenty of those, but guilt, in those few situations would remain for the vast majority of us. Off-hand I can think of but one exception, which is to steal a loaf of bread lest we die of hunger.

The Bishops' announcement - which is in reality an invitation to those in moral sin to commit sacrilege by receiving Holy Communion is the announcement of an anti-Gospel, the authorship of which can be traced back quickly to Pope Francis or Archbishop Victor Fernandez. Yet, even Pope Francis himself has not yet been quite so daring or shameless as the Maltese Bishops. Perhaps these bishops feel they have more freedom and less restrictions placed upon them because they don't have to be worried about being placed on trial for material heresy, since 'rigid' Cardinals are too occupied with 'the man at the top' to bother. But one day, they will have to answer to Almighty God for their course of action. God help them! Of course, like dominoes, other Bishops Conferences will doubtless fall into line with the new paradigm. We may as well start a sweep stake now on the next country to fall as Bishops Conference, in wanton acts of sheer clericalism, rob the Catholic Faith from the Faithful and claim themselves as masters and commanders of it!

Some commentators are talking of the Maltese Bishops statement as 'the end of the Catholic teaching on marriage' but it is, in fact, much more than that. It really marks the beginning of the end of the propagation of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Faith at its hierarchical level. Time alone will tell what can be salvaged for Maltese Catholics from this wreckage but much will rely on resilient priests willing to face grand inquisitors for upholding marriage and defending the Eucharist from sacrilege. May God help them!

Nice place, shame about the Bishops.

There are many controversial passages in 'the Maltese Falcon' - for their message has gone to the very uttermost bounds of Malta and Gozo and beyond - the most pointed of which is the abstract determination of whether an impenitent can be 'at peace with God', but the real dagger in the heart of Christianity concerns that part of the document which describes situations in which it becomes 'humanly impossible' to live as 'brother and sister'. This needs to be addressed firmly because it is the turning point on which hinges the Salvation of not just those in 'difficult' or to quote high-ranking prelates "so-called irregular unions", but, if fleshed out just a little more, extended here or there, the entire human race. At the very least, every Christian on the face of the Earth.

Firstly, we must be firm in saying this so permit me to capitalise this and enlarge it...




The 'humanly possible' is for other religions, philosophies and beliefs of our age and every age. Essentially, it is for atheists. The Catholic Faith, however, our very faith - all of it - ALL OF IT - relies on assent to the Church's faith in the 'humanly impossible'. Our Faith is supernatural. Faith is a supernatural gift of God. Its major tenets are not unreasonable - they can be believed - but they are humanly impossible. This is one reason why when He was on Earth, Our Lord Jesus Christ taught us to pray. He knew, as He knows, that to follow Him is 'humanly impossible'. Without His grace, we will fall into grave sin very easily. We cannot follow Him without Him to lead us. That is why we need God for whom 'nothing is impossible' for 'nothing is impossible to God'. If the Christian life was 'humanly possible' then we would not need God's help. It would be a life much like any other in all its respects, including the moral sphere. We would believe what the world believes. God may as well, as far as this new paradigm goes, not exist at all.

This first draft is admittedly far too 'rigid'. It still talks of such things as 'sin' and 'punishment' and 'God'.

Which leads us neatly back to the Maltese Bishops who, having examined the Ten Commandments have thought better of them. Indeed, it is surprising just how many Commandments are flouted in a single document. If - to them - there are cases in which it is 'humanly impossible' to observe continence in a second union and to live as brother and sister, then we may ask very serious questions as to whether they believe it is 'humanly possible' to live chastely as Bishops. Is it 'humanly impossible' for a priest to observe chastity? May it be 'in some cases' not possible? For whom? As I say, the implications of accepting defeat to this very secular maxim are huge, not just for the laity but for the Hierarchy as well. What factors would make it 'humanly impossible' for a priest or bishop to remain faithful to those restrictive, 'rigid' vows?

Though it can be quickly and easily 'discerned' that the divorced and remarried are currently being weaponised to destroy the entirety of the Catholic Faith in the hearts and minds of the Faithful, this singular concession impacts the moral life of every human being in the Church, since every human being in the Church has what we call a 'weakness' or a 'wound' the result of which we have always called the effects of Original Sin. This concession to the divorce and remarried who make no firm resolve to live in continence can be applied to everyone who enjoys their sin but does not wish in any sense to break from it. Oh yes, we can all be in that place, but the Church has hitherto encouraged us out of that place and into God's grace, the State of Grace. The Church could, in the light of this document become a vehicle for Hell, if you still believe in that place, which one assumes these Bishops don't. More fool them.

Are there some - or is it all - people who have sex outside of marriage who because of attenuating circumstances are called to Holy Communion without repentance and a firm resolution to amend their lives? Are there some - or is it all - thieves who can be hereby called to Holy Communion without repentance and a firm resolution to amend their lives? Are there some - or is it all - perpetrators of domestic violence who are called to Holy Communion without repentance and a firm resolution? Paedophiles? Pederasts? Murderers? Copraphagics and copraphelians? Masturbators? Pornographers? Terrorists? People who defraud their labourers of their wages? Gossips? There are "situations" which make all sins more difficult to renounce. One might argue that the addictive nature of sin itself makes it 'humanly impossible' to break with it. His Holiness keeps telling people not to gossip but in truth why should gossips give up their gossipy ways? Why can't they be accompanied? Some people find it very difficult and 'humanly impossible' to stop, after all.

Of course, those who have crafted these concessions to the divorced and remarried know full well that reception to Holy Communion to these persons implies a concession to all who do not wish to break with mortal sin, telling them to relax in their sin and not take their religion so seriously as to think of saving their immortal souls, including unbelieving, faithless, traitorous Bishops themselves.

'Don't worry about your apostasy, it will all be okay! There was a bit of pressure from Rome. It's what the Holy Father wanted. You couldn't have defied Amoris Laetitia. How could you have? He's the Pope, after all! It's a 'Magisterial' document (that contains errors that contradict the perennial teachings of the Church). It was a difficult situation! With attenuating circumstances! Your faithlessness and apostasy will not be punished, not to rape the Bride of Christ would have been humanly impossible in this circumstance!'

Does that work? No. Sorry! You can try, my Lords, but no excuses will do! Catholics do not believe what you have said you believe. Here, faithful Catholics and you part some kind of company, even if Catholics worship in your Dioceses!

It is 'humanly impossible' to break with sin which is why Bishops have historically (though less so now) encouraged believers to place all their confidence in God who makes things divinely possible and can help us to love Him and observe His commandments as we grow in friendship with Him. We believe that a man or a woman who believes in Jesus Christ is a 'new creation'. Baptism confers grace in the soul. Jesus Christ does not turn away the man or the woman who come to Him asking Him to generate within them love for God and the strength to bear the Cross and follow Him. We do not believe that God asks us to do 'the impossible', even when these things appear to us 'humanly impossible' because of our human weakness. That has never been the Catholic Faith. It is not now and it never will be. For God, all things are possible. For those who cling to Him, who rely not on themselves but on the divine sustenance of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, who pray to Him knowing that they are incapable of fulfilling His will without His divine help, fidelity to God, love of Him becomes the very fruit of that reception of Holy Communion.

Yes, we may be weak. Yes, we might fall, we have recourse to the Sacrament of Penance, but Jesus Christ is truly present in His Sacraments to help us to achieve union with Him, not with the world, or the flesh or with the Devil. To believe this, however, requires Faith, itself a gift from God, given to us in our Baptism. It was given to the Maltese Bishops, but they have just thrown it away publicly! Where is the Faith of the Maltese Bishops? May God help them find it again! What the Maltese Bishops have done is to sketch out a new belief that is not from God, that denies the sanctifying grace poured into the hearts of believers, that denies what Catholics have always believed, always, everywhere, that with God we can overcome our sins and live lives in fidelity and obedience to Our Lord Jesus Christ and His Gospel.

May God come to the aid of Maltese Catholics and their Bishops. You might very well be following orders, my Lords, but you aren't following Our Lord Jesus Christ! May the Lord rebuke you and help you to repent for what you have done in your clarion call to sacrilege. You may be the first and you won't be the last Bishops Conference to do this, but you can be sure that without repentance on your parts, your own Salvation - whether you believe in it or not - is now hanging by a thread. How do I know this without knowing God's Mind? If you have denied the Lord Jesus Christ publicly before men and the Angels, how can you expect Him to recognise you as His in the presence of His Father in Heaven? Whatever temporal advantage you think you have gained in your apostasy will be wiped out and overturned in eternity if you do not repent. I suppose they think it is 'humanly impossible' to go back on what they have done, but with Christ it is possible. For all things are possible for God! May God give them grace to do it.

Let all Catholics ask the Maltese Bishops to do what they cannot bring themselves to ask of the laity, for their sake and the sake of those in their care:


Saturday 14 January 2017

Friday 13 January 2017

The Nub of the Problem

“And Jesus never passed Himself off like a prince (true): He was the servant of all (true), and this is what gave him authority (false).” ~ Pope Francis

There is an incalculable amount of evil that can be done by Churchmen who believe that Christ was given authority by anything other than His identity as the only begotten Son of God, of Whom we say in the Creed the following:

Born from the Father before all ages,
God from God,
Light from light,
True God, from true God,
Begotten, not made,
Consubstantial with the Father,
Through Him all things were made.

If Jesus Christ's authority derived from His 'service to all' - if His authority came from His actions and behaviour during His ministry itself, rather than being always the Second Person of the Most Holy Trinity, then His actual teachings are only as useful to the Church as the teachings of someone else who imitates Him in His behaviour. This person could have entirely different teachings but still be 'just so much like Christ'.

Presumably, another man, within the Church perhaps, let's say, er, the Pope (though it need not be necessarily him), can derive a similar authority to Christ simply by doing or being known for doing Christ-like things. If Christ's authority comes from being 'a wonderful, selfless person, serving all' then presumably the Pope's authority, too, comes from being a 'a wonderful, selfless person serving all'.

This is a very interesting idea that the Pope is proposing, but it is not Catholicism. One can see in this new paradigm how some could paint Pope Francis, who we all hear is 'a wonderful person' as a new Jesus Christ, updated and modified (let's not say 'improved') for 21st century man. Indeed, this process of making the Pope into a modern day Jesus Christ has already started and seems to have a self-generating momentum.

A letter to The Tablet
'Pope Francis, we hear very much is 'humble'.
Jesus Christ was humble.
Pope Francis, 'does so much good'.
Jesus Christ did so much good.
Pope Francis, 'stands against the strict religious leaders of his day'.
Jesus Christ stood against the strict religious leaders of his day.
Pope Francis 'stands up for the poor and marginalised'.
Jesus Christ stood up for the poor and marginalised.'
You get the idea. One could go on!

Already the PR efforts to cast Pope Francis as 'just like Jesus Christ' have been well underway. People in Rome are literally being paid to promote Pope Francis in the media and it is working, in parts, among those who wish to be deceived. It is - in some parts - a very effective media campaign that Pope Francis has engaged in. But this latest comment from the Pope concerning authority and where it comes from cannot be allowed to pass.

This cannot be allowed to pass because, the Pope is not, nor is any other individual...

Born from the Father before all ages, God from God, Light from light, True God, from true God, Begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father.

These words refer to Jesus Christ alone. No matter how 'Christ-like' a person may be in his outward appearances, no priest, no layman, no Cardinal or Pope can ever aspire to be what or Who Jesus Christ Is: God made flesh!

In addition, there is a disturbing aside to glean from this disturbing comment from the Pope concerning Christ's authority because of his Office as Pope, and this is that if Christ's authority came from being 'just so humble, close to the people and willing to be of service to all' then where does the Pope's authority come from?

Traditionally, Catholics have believed that the Pope's authority comes from Christ Who said, 'Thou art Peter and upon this Rock I shall build my Church'. But if Christ's own authority comes from simply being a good person, rather than being God, what then does the Pope's authority rest upon but being a good person? Were Catholics to believe that every Pope would have to gain and maintain authority, for it would not be a 'given' in order to possess it, by working very hard to be a 'wonderful person, close to the people, just like Christ'. What an awfully Pelagian position every Pope would find himself in! Having to work so hard at being good simply to gain authority which, in reality, has been given to him by Christ Himself regardless of his personal virtues or lack of them!

Every crisis of Faith in the Church is Christological in nature and for this reason the 'two truths and a lie' game so beloved of TEFL teachers as an ice-breaker for their class becomes something of a habit. Without a true, Catholic sense - a right belief - about Jesus Christ and Who He is, God made man, fully God and fully man, assuming that which He was not, but undergoing no alteration to His nature as Divine, everything else will fall apart - yes, even the Papacy!

And while it is true that Our Lord, 'never passed Himself off as a prince', Jesus Christ is, nonetheless, both Prince and King. When asked by Pilate as to His Kingship, Our Lord did not deny it when 'dialoguing' with Pilate:

'Pilate therefore went into the hall again, and called Jesus, and said to him: Art thou the king of the Jews? Jesus answered: Sayest thou this thing of thyself, or have others told it thee of me? Pilate answered: Am I a Jew? Thy own nation, and the chief priests, have delivered thee up to me: what hast thou done? Jesus answered: My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would certainly strive that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now my kingdom is not from hence. Pilate therefore said to him: Art thou a king then? Jesus answered: Thou sayest that I am a king. For this was I born, and for this came I into the world; that I should give testimony to the truth. Every one that is of the truth, heareth my voice. Pilate saith to him: What is truth? And when he said this, he went out again to the Jews, and saith to them: I find no cause in him.' (John 18, 33-40)

No, Jesus Christ never 'passed Himself off as a Prince', He had no need for earthly honours, but just as in His behaviour and actions this is not simply because of His humility and selflessness. It is because He is Lord, through Him all things, including those who speak of Him, were made.

The same man who said, reportedly, concerning the recent sackings of three men from the CDF...

“...And I am the pope, I do not need to give reasons for any of my decisions. I have decided that they have to leave and they have to leave...”

...will one day have to give answer to the Lord Jesus Christ. Let him, if he has forgotten that, remember, at the very least, that. It is that which should make every Pope, who is judged in a more severe manner than are ordinary folk, tremble. It is, in fact, this that should restrain every Pope from becoming a tyrant. But I fear we have, in this Pope, moved well beyond this restraining kind of thought. Where there is no fear of God, there is tyranny! Cardinal Burke has said it is the Last Judgement that encourages him to speak out against error and losing his title would mean very little in comparison to the fear of offending Christ. Pope Francis would do very well to learn from him! Whatever virtues God has given Pope Francis that make him 'like Jesus Christ', the naked acquisition and exercise of power and privilege is not what Christianity is about!

Monday 2 January 2017

They left for their own country by another path...

Courtesy of One Peter Five

Nothing quite so cheery, heart-warming and festive as sacking staff over Christmastide, is there?

So much for 'dialogue', 'fraternity', 'accompaniment' and the rest of it.

Happy new year to you all.

The Pope Who Won't Be Buried

It has been a long time since I have put finger to keyboard to write about our holy Catholic Faith, something I regret, but which I put larg...