( You’ll have to copy and paste this, I am afraid. And believe me, you want to switch the audio off….).
From Gloria.tv, a video of the body of Padre Pio after its controversial exhumation in 2008. As you can see from the video, the body is in an impressive state of conservation. As far as I know, there are no ways known to man to preserve a corpse in such a way, for such a long time and a simple look at the video will persuade you that no embalming – not attempted, as well-known from the filmed inhumation and, also filmed, sealing of the tomb – could ever reach such results.
As the seals have been opened in front of the cameras, and th estate of the tomb perfectly corresponded to the state of the tomb filmed by the original inhumation, there can be no doubt that the largely incorrupt body shown in 2008 is the original, with no tricks attempted by anyone.
I am obviously far from saying that this alone is proof of the existence of God – which can be reached in a purely intellectual way without any need for Padre Pio’s body anyway -. Still, if I were an atheist these images would give me much to think about.
This morning at Mass the celebrant briefly preceded the homily with a short description of what is happening with the introduction of the new translation. As we were by the strange Mass that the Oratorians call “Sung Latin, Ordinary Form” – and which is, in fact, its first version, very similar to a Tridentine Mass, with only a few modifications for example with the introduction of the bidding prayers – it was duly pointed out that in this mass there would be only one modification: at the beginning of the bidding prayers, the answer to “The Lord be with you” would be “and with your spirit” rather than “and also with you”.
After which, Father Harrison simply invited to make a dry run, and after he said “the Lord be with you” all the congregation answered “and with your spirit”, in an atmosphere of tangible merriment.
You see? It wasn’t difficult. Some words are substituted with others. People are told which words are substituted for which. They say the new words. That’s that.
I so wish all those liberal whinos treating us all like lobotomised morons to have been present in order to witness this miraculous feat of instant learning. You will be pleased to know that, to my knowledge, no old pew sitter suffered any noticeable distress at hearing the words, and I even dare to predict that all of them will cope all right and survive the shock.
Furthermore, I also venture to suggest that most of those liberal thickos who have difficulties in learning new words are, at least, able to read. Well, this should go a long way towards solving the problem, as the simple reading of the text and the saying of what one finds written week after week should, in time, allow even the most intellectually challenged Birkenstock-wearing liberal moron to cope with the new words.
There were old words. Now there will be new ones. In a couple of months people will struggle to remember what the old expressions were. It’s really as banal as that. Please stop harassing us with the myth of the old man unable to learn a couple of words, or traumatised at having to say “and with your spirit”.
Please find here the text of the Vatican’s answer to the Irish Government’s populist and rather stupid aggression following the publication of the Cloyne Report.
Rather late now and I only browsed the text a bit before going to bed. It seems to me that this is unusually strong tobacco for any diplomacy, let alone the Vatican one. I might be wrong, and I need to re-read the thing with more leisure and more time.
Glad to see they still have some teeth left, though. At least the diplomatic ones.
The “call to disobedience” of the Austrian heretics seems to slowly infect their cousins in Germany.
Here it is none other than the head of the German Bishop’s Conference, archbishop Zoellitsch, to lead the charge of those not only willing, but proud to assume a position of open conflict with the Church and to tell us how good they are in the process.
Make no mistake, Archbishop Zoellitsch is merely trying to curry favour with the tepidly Catholic Germans who still pay the Kirchensteuer. These Germans, having been never properly instructed and having been afflicted by one of the most cowardly clergy of the planet, seriously believe that they have the right to question Catholic truth. No surprise, when even their shepherds do the same….
Said shepherds have no inclination – and no economic interest – in trying to properly instruct their sheep, fearing that, if they so do, the sheep will stop paying the “church tax”, or Kirchensteuer ; which is, in fact, no tax at all, but a voluntary contribution that can be stopped at any time, though with a certain amount of red tape involved.
I will examine below what the Archbishop is capable to say in order to secure his pieces of silver. But first I would like to point out that there can be no doubt whatsoever that Archbishop Zoellitsch’s intervention is motivated by the desire to appear in tune with the secularised “Church Tax” payer by putting himself in clear conflict with Rome. His scandalous words can only be seen in connection with the grave crisis of the “Kirchensteuer” system, now raging also in Germany.
In Italy, we call a person who gives away his values for economic interests (by extension, even if he is a man) with the resounding, emotionally charged and, well, not entirely polite name of puttana. Whilst one hesitates to call a bishop “puttana”, there can be no doubt that sheer prostitution is what is happening here. Bishop Zoellitsch doesn’t have any scruple in giving away his supposedly Catholic credentials – those values he has the duty to protect - in order to please those who pay for the expenses of one of the richest (and possibly: the richest) churches of the Catholic universe. And he is so fine with that, and has the economic motives of his spenders so much in his mind, and feels so secure that the wealth of the German Church gives him a say, that he doesn’t fail to let Rome know that Germany is a big contributor to the Roman coffers. In other words, the killjoys in Rome are requested to shut up and to let him satisfy the desires of the paying public.
Archbishop Zoellitsch’s main aim is to relieve the suffering of rosewater Catholics who have left – or have been left by – their partners and now live in concubinage with another partner (hopefully of the other sex, though I wonder what Zoellitsch would think if this wasn’t the case). The Archbishop’s argument is – wait for this – that it is a matter of “mercy” that these people should be allowed to receive communion, and at this point one truly wonder whether the speaker is a shepherd, or a madam.
Last time I looked, a concubine couldn’t receive communion because he or she is a concubine. What’s difficult in that? The concept of concubine is not difficult to grasp, provided one understands the concept of marriage in the first place. Marriage is a bond that cannot be broken as long as both spouses live. Therefore, if one lives with a person that is not his spouse he is living with a concubine, and to his fornication he adds the scandal of openly rebelling to the Church’s rules. Again: what’s difficult in that? What is beyond the power of understanding of an eight years old child, let alone a bishop?
Now, no one can say that Catholic societies have not been blessed with a human understanding for human frailties far away from the rigidity of Protestantism. But even in those societies, no one has ever dreamed to say that such frailties are justified, or that giving scandal be something deserving of mercy, or that human mercy may wash away mortal sin. Put in a simple way, a man who left his wife and family was always, always considered an idiot, a family wrecker, and a self-centered child and a woman who left her husband to live with another man was always considered the above-mentioned puttana. Similarly, it has always been considered a given that scandal be avoided at all costs, so that one’s weaknesses be not source of sin or confusion for others. It makes sense, and it works rather well.
This should now change, says Archbishop Zoellitsch. Public sin and scandal should have no sacramental consequence, because we are so merciful.
I truly wonder what the Archbishop is thinking, because what he says just isn’t Catholic: is he saying that one who leaves his spouse and takes a concubine doesn’t live in mortal sin? Really? Really? An Archbishop? The head of the German Bishop’s Conference? If he thinks that open scandal and public concubinage isn’t a mortal sin, how can he call himself I don’t say a Catholic, but a Christian? Heavens, even Casanova could give this man lessons in morals! If he thinks that concubinage is a mortal sin, how can he think that a person in mortal sin can validly receive Holy Communion? What does he think Holy Communion is, a piece of bread given to those the community wants to feel included?
The simple, painful truth is that the Archbishop very well knows what a mortal sin is; he is fully aware of the sacramental nature of the Holy Communion; he knows perfectly well that it is a sheer impossibility that a sacrament may be validly received by a person in mortal sin. He knows all that, but he has chosen to prostitute himself and the German church for the sake of the “Church Tax” payments.
If you have any doubt, you can read the rest of the interview (if you can read German). He takes the German president, Mr Christian Wulff, as example of the “good” Catholic who is left out of communion by those baddies in Rome because….. he has left his wife and is now the concubine of another woman. He says that he is “impatient” with the rhythm of “change”, thus implying both that he is better than the men in Rome and that there can be any “change” in doctrinal matters in the first place. He even comes to the point of praising the Green Party and here the whoredom truly reaches the summit. If he saw some money coming, Archbishop Zoellitsch would, no doubt, praise the North-Korean government as a shining example of “merciful” behaviour.
We don’t want to use the word that is appropriate to describe the Archbishop’s moral stature. We must be at all times aware of the fact that, by grossly insulting a shepherd of the Church, we insult the Church he represents. But make no mistake, Archbishop Zoellitsch is making of the German Church the brothel of German secularism, in the hope it continues to pay.
Personally I see only one way out of this situation:
a. Exemplary punishment of the Archbishop. Punish one, so that one hundred may learn.
b. The end of the Kirchensteuer and the dismantling of this rich, lazy, stupid, corrupt, and utterly heretical ministerial apparatus
c. The complete re-organisation of the Catholic Church in Germany with the principles of far less money for the priests – among the best paid on the planet -, far more attention to orthodoxy and far less attention to pleasing the public.
d. a massive and sustained work of re-education (better: of education) of the German Catholics.
This is not easy and not to achieve rapidly, but it can be achieved if in Rome it is finally acknowledged that the German Church is ill to the point of descending to utter prostitution in order to save her wealth and comfort.
I have taken the “Heresy in Austria” post away from the “sticky” position.
I wanted to leave it only a couple of days, but every time I read it I got so angry at clicking on the link and seeing that the “call to disobedience” was still there that I decided to leave it again and again.
With the time, though, the thing has started to nerve me rather mightily and whilst this will happen to me more often than to you, I start to think that many readers weren’t so astonishingly pleased, either.
I will re-post the post as “sticky” every now and then in order to give the situation regular visibility without unnerving the readers. On all other days, the two references to the heresy in Austria prepared from the start (the “stop” sign on the right hand side and the extra post on the upper bar, put in the second best position and only after the Rosary) will allow everyone to click and check if at least the link has been removed (it reads in German “Aufruf zum Ungehorsam”: as long as it’s there, nothing has happened).
In the meantime there has been nothing more than a moderate non-development with some more meowing from the Archbishop, meowing not only largely expected but indispensable to avoid the boot. Nothing more as far as I know. If there is anything new and relevant (excluding meowing) perhaps the one or other will let me know.
Thank you for your patience, which must have been tested in some case. I know mine was.
The Mexican Presbyterians have decided, after 139 years, to file for divorce from the PCUSA, the Presbyterian [so-called] Church of the USA.
It would appear that whilst the Holy Ghost spoke to the ones suggesting to them that homosexual priests – I mean here outright sodomites – are just the ticket, the same Holy Ghost spoke to the others – in good Spanish, I presume – telling them that this is a no-no.
As a consequence of this translation/communication/phone signal problems, the two organisations have resulted in an event that can be rightly defined one of the defining features of Protestantism, and a significant Protestant gift to the modern world: divorce.
I do not know whether or how the two organisations will discuss their differences, and whenever I am in front of these situations I can’t avoid being embarrassed for the boys, girls and third sex members (plus all the other abbreviated indications denoting sexual deviancy) of the Episcopalians.
In fact, if the Holy Ghost is speaking to both, then something must be wrong with the Holy Ghost and even they can safely exclude that. If nothing is wrong with the Holy Ghost, though, one can only conclude either that the entire idea was wrong these last 139 years, or that the Holy Ghost has gone away from/is kept out from the sister/spouse congregation, in which case the matter is more than creepy and the question why one should follow one congregation that can go completely to the dogs in a matter of decades rather than the one who has gone on strong for 2000 years and was founded by our Saviour instead a rather valid one.
Can’t wait for the moment when the Presbyterians will give communion to dogs.
Oh no, wait! It has happened already!
The photo you see above depicts Renato Bertelli’s Profilo Continuo, a then extremely celebrated and, still today, rather admired work of modern art.
The work represents, as the name suggests, the profile of the Duce over a 360 degree rotation.
Whilst the profile of the Duce is very marked and, so to speak, fitting for the role, what counts here is the impression of strenght, daring innovation, and even speed suggested by the work.
Bertelli’s inspiration didn’t go unnoticed. Mussolini was so pleased with it that he allowed its use as official portrait, and the work gave birth to reproduction that lovers of art (and, presumably, of Fascism) could install in their own reception rooms.
You see here, if I may say so, modern art at its best. You see what the work is aimed at, you visually and instinctively “get” the message of the work: the representation of Mussolini’s traits as the embodiment of a new era, a brave and daring, but breathtakingly modern one. Whilst very modern and with the Duce almost not recognisable, it still defines him in a brilliant way.
Fast forward to 2011. A new statue is revealed in Piazza dei Cinquecento, in Rome. The statue represents the late Pope, John Paul II.
It is, undoubtedly, a piece of modern art. There is a huge cavity, strongly resembling a device for the relief of gentlemen’s bladder urges and therefore fittingly called, by the vox populi, orinale. Apparently, said urinal-shaped cavity represents the desire of the late Pope to be inclusive, and accept everyone. It still looks like a urinal, though.
Over this strange device, a head is placed. A heavy, square, hard one. A head which, coincidentally, looks pretty much like the Duce’s head – it is astonishing how certain things remain in the collective imagination of a country – but is supposed to be the head of the late Pope instead. One looks at the “work” and thinks that whatever the artist has been smoking, it should be taken away from him at once.
Note that Bertelli didn’t need any modification to his work; and that his work actually wouldn’t have tolerated any, so beautiful it is in its purity of lines and clarity of purpose. This doesn’t seem to be the case of the artist of (degenerate) art who created the urinal, because said (degenerate) artist has now promised to modify the work so that people, at least, stop thinking that it is a monument to Mussolini with the wrong name.
One wonders what will happen, then, to this “masterwork with second thoughts”. Will the head be so modified as to make it more similar to the one of the late Pope? Will we get a profilo continuo of the said pope above the orinale? Will the Pope miraculously get things like… arms? Will the urinal be actually replaced with something at least vaguely resembling a body?
In the same weeks of the inauguration of the orinale, a statue to Ronald Reagan was unveiled in front of the American Embassy in London. It looks like – you wouldn’t believe it – Ronald Reagan. One wonders how the Americans could be so unbearably unimaginative as to commission something resembling the person it is meant to remember!
I do not know you, but I am fed up with idiots squandering public money and wanting to be cretinous at all costs, purely out of fear of not being considered intellectual and unconventional enough. Cretins is what they’ll be considered, both those who made the “work” and those who commissioned and approved it.
I am waiting to see what “modifications” are going to be unveiled. I’m afraid we haven’t stopped laughing yet.
One of the most tragic effects of the modern culture of death is being revealed in the last years: the selective abortion of girls.
As you can read here, this murderous practice has taken hold not only in China, but also in other Asian countries characterised by a strong preference for boys (curiously, then, some liberals will tell you that Catholicism is male-centered).
When in a country like China 120 boys are born for 100 girls, you know something really bad is in the making.
On the one hand, this clearly impacts public order. Males are sexually aggressive and a generalised scarcity of women is, on a collective scale, bound to cause problems of various kind. I can’t imagine that countries with a primitive legal system but vastly corrupted local structures, like China, will not have mafia organisations selling the “right to marry” in the territory they control, and killing those who marry without paying; or young women being sold to the one making the best offer; or an increase in the killing of men caused by the desire to have their wife “available” again.
On the other hand, this shows us how feminism starts to kill its daughters, with women’s “liberation” becoming the liberty to be killed in the womb because a woman. If you are looking for a form of discrimination against women, you can’t find one more cruel and cynical than this. But hey, don’t tell the feminazis, they would give the blame of all this on… men, and prefer not to see what monsters abortion has given birth to.
Besides, every Chinese/Asian man (and, make no mistake, woman: the discrimination against women has deep roots over there, and you can’t blame men for what is common mentality and custom) would be able to tell the feminazis that “reproductive health” applies to them too, and that Asian women should have no less rights than their Western counterparts.
Abortion: the gift that keeps on giving.
Firstly, some background information for the readers. When you have your own blog you have the possibility of seeing, from a “background page” not available to the public, which other internet pages have linked to you causing readers to land on your internet site from the site who carried the link. Every now and then, one clicks to see what is going on and is then carried directly to the internet site that has posted a link to one’s own site.
It was thus that I landed, some days ago, on this site. As you can see, this is not a very liberal site and is actually far more on the conservative site than yours truly; it appears to be either very near, or a mouthpiece of the SSPX (or FSSPX, if you prefer the abbreviation of its Latin name) itself. In particular, on this same thread another post was placed, equating the possible “peace proposals” of the Vatican to the Timeo Danaos et dona ferentes (“I fear the Greeks, even when they are bearing gifts”) many of us will remember from our schooldays.
I found the comparison indelicate, as whilst I do not think that along the corridors of the Vatican everything is made in a spirit of disinterested saintliness I do believe that the attempt to reach a reconciliation with the FSPPX is a sincere one, and a great concern of the Holy Father. If memory serves, I saw this “Greeks fearing” comment (possibly also posted elsewhere) mentioned in Rorate Caeli, with reactions generally not far away from mine.
It turns out now from Messa in Latino that:
a) the Timeo Danaos comment is lifted from here and therefore clearly from Williamson himself.
b) that, coming from Williamson, this would be a clear indication that, however concrete or advanced, some form of proposal is really in preparation.
What Messa in Latino is thinking is that possibly on the 14 september we will not have the official announcement of an agreement with the FSSPX, but the presentation of a proposal, that would be examined by the SSPX in all tranquility, particularly in view of the unfortunate Assisi-III gathering still scheduled for October.
Messa in Latino finds the events momentous enough to justify the title “Rome-FSSPX: decisive moments ahead”. I am obviously pleased, but cannot avoid noticing that if no agreement is being finalised, the (mere) proposal of a structure similar to an Ordinariate for the SSPX and other traditionalists would not be anywhere near the historical moment perhaps hoped by many within the SSPX (and dreaded by the liberal troops), but rather the beginning of a painful – if hopefully salutary – phase of conflict within the SSPX itself, with the likes of Williamson refusing a priori every kind of contamination with Rome’s “Greeks” whatever the gifts, and the coming Assisi “event” not contributing at all to the serenity of the discussion.
Please also note that, in an unprecedented move, a religious sister from New Zealand has been authorised to be transferred to a convent dependent from the FSSPX. I can’t imagine such a decision unless if dictated from the persuasion that a reconciliation is not so very far away. The news relating to the sister has been published and then taken offline, but it is still available in cached version, with the link on the Messa in Latino site. Whilst I understand Messa in Latino’s reasons to publish it I prefer not to do it for obvious reasons, but take it from me.. .
From the outside, we can’t do anything else than pray of course. Still, one can’t avoid thinking that if such a proposal is on the table, it would have been perhaps wiser to wait until after the Assisi-III gathering – provided that such an event must really take place – and start the discussion, say, before Christmas or around Easter, in a different and less controversial environment.
I find some positions within the SSPX frankly difficult to digest, and the entire Danaos-attitude not helpful. But from what I have read around – on the internet, and from the leaflets-booklets I have picked from them on several occasions – the desire for reconciliation is very vivid among the majority of the members and supporters of the organisation, and the idea that Rome should be “converted to Catholicism” (rather than, say, persuaded to rephrase and reformulate questionable statements and attitudes of the past) rather in the minority.
Let us hope and pray for the best. Even if on the 14 September nothing should happen, this might be a good sign as it might – just might – indicate that a proposal for reconciliation is ready, but its official presentation wisely postponed to a less controversial time.
Three cheers for Fr John Lankeit, the rector of the Cathedral of Ss. Simon and Jude, Phoenix, and also echoed by Father Z.
Father Lankeit had the lucidity and courage to say out loud that what is wrong can’t be right; not even then, when this wrong is very dear to secular minds. I wish the Conciliar fathers had had the same courage when subversive tendencies appeared in their respective diocese; but this obviously didn’t happen, seen that the subversive tendencies had been encouraged and abetted by those same bishops who should have suffocated them.
Fr Lankeit decided, then, to say what rather everyone well underway on his process of sobering – or who never got drunk in the first place – knows: there can be no place in the Church for so-called “altar girls”. He doesn’t say it with these words of course, but the message is clear enough. It was more than a mistake, it was a liturgical abuse to which Rome caved in out of sheer cowardice; a cowardice that has made incalculable damage, the rubble only in the last years being seriously, if slowly, removed. What is wrong doesn’t become right merely because it’s been approved.
Allow me to let Fr Lankeit speak:
“If you look around the Church — and I’m talking about the overall Church — if you look at dioceses, if you look at religious orders and you look at parishes where they have the clear honoring of the distinction and the complementarity of men and women, you see both vocations flourish,” Fr. Lankeit said. “And when I say both vocations, I mean to the priesthood as well as vocations to the consecrated religious life.”
Look – the man is saying – when you do things the proper way, you have more vocations among people of both sexes!
“Vocation crisis” is just another word for “liberal madness”: when you had the former you unavoidable got the latter; as the latter goes away the former will unavoidably disappear.
Fr Lankeit has others, long-forgotten or long-ignored truths to say. Try this:
“Prior to my ordination, as a single, Catholic man, I had no right whatsoever to the priesthood. And so when I went into the seminary, I was determining whether or not Jesus Christ was calling me to be a priest, but the Church was likewise discerning me and the ultimate decision was the Church’s,” Fr. Lankeit said. “Even if I felt very, very strongly at the bottom of my heart that I was called to be a priest and the Church didn’t recognize that, I had to accept that.”
I wonder how you can explain this to the modern feminazis: that there is no right to priesthood, no matter how strong you “feeeel”. No, it’s not about your feelings and no, you are not God and are not authorised to change His rules, though you may “feel” you are. I am afraid that allowing girls to become “altar boys” hasn’t helped to get this simple facts straight.
“The Church was likewise discerning me”. Thank God for Fr Lankeit, and please let your Hail Mary for him be a beautiful one.
Or try this one:
Q: Do young girls who serve at the altar become nuns?
A: “I haven’t seen that evidence”
You weren’t being inattentive, Father. The only vocation of “altar girls” which seems to work very well is the one to sanctimonious, secretly mocked, bossy old ugly feminist. No vocation crisis there I am afraid. Well, not yet; but given time and undertakers, tutto si aggiusta….
Out of tune, I must say, is the close of the article, with the mother of two siblings (one a boy, already an altar server; the other a girl, apparently aspiring to become one) who thinks that she must “understand where it’s coming from” and says “I would want to know more about the reasons for the change before having an opinion about it.” I hope that after the knowing will come the understanding, but the rather unpleasant impression remains that what counts in the journalist’s mind is what the mother thinks, rather than what the Church has done these two thousand years. I wasn’t entirely surprised in discovering that I was very interested to know what Fr Lankeit’s motives are, but really couldn’t care less of what opinion the lady will have.
Insensitive, isn’t it?
I don’t know anything about Justin Bieber. I mean, I really couldn’t care a straw. I barely know he exists, and I assure you the last circumstance is merely due to the fact, alas, not being really avoidable.
It’s astonishing to me that people still fighting against their acne might be considered the carrier of any form of message (let alone wisdom) whatsoever. It tells something about the state of our society. Add to this that the young man looks like a …. oh well, let’s not say that, poor chap.
It would appear that whatever this chap says, makes waves. Crucially, he appears to be, in a way, “pro life”. At least as much as one can be whose clarity of thought doesn’t go beyond saying “whatever they have in North Korea, that’s bad”. Whatever? If you don’t even know what it is they have, how can you….. ? But I’m getting excited, and in the day of Gaddafi’s fall I do not want to get nervous.
It would also appear that the young chap has made a video looked at 600 million times, which poses the question whether all this popularity couldn’t be put to a good use, for example trying to condemn genocide. Adolf Hussein Obama wouldn’t be pleased for sure; at least for the duration of a golf game.
It seems easy, but it isn’t. In my eyes, the problems are as follows:
1. This is a teenager. Teenagers do change their mind. If you start supporting him now that he says what you like, you run the risk of a huge problem the day he will start saying things you don’t. The probability is not small.
2. This is a teenager who can only influence teenagers. People who – looking at reality for what it is for once instead of drinking the kool-aid of youth rhetoric – don’t vote and, basically, don’t count. People who will grow out of their infatuation with a pop idol and will soon start thinking with their own head, provided they have one. It is a delusion to think that a pop idol can influence a generation, much less a generation of teenagers into their adult years. Teenagers change rather rapidly and many will be ashamed in five years’ time – nay, make it two – of having ever told themselves fans of their idol of yesteryear.
3. Beware of those who are popular. Truth is not spread through those who are popular. On the contrary, popularity (as in pop-ularity) doesn’t really make great inroads. If the religious opinions of famous people had a real relevance, Scientology would make no prisoners. The reality is that people – even when stupid, and even when teenagers; which all too often is the same thing – can well separate their musical preferences from their values. My impression is that people “follow” their idols when the latter do what they want to do in the first place; their idol is one who took drugs because they want to take drugs, etc. Pop idols don’t change people, for sure, much less change adolescents into different adults. Thank God for that, by the way.
4. If we want to really fight against abortion, we need something with a bit more weight than a walking Clearasil ad. We need brave priests and bishops saying it as it is. Serious advancement for Truth is effected by serious people being taken seriously by serious people, not by teenagers expressing some broken idea in broken English to other barely literate teenagers.
Bieber can do whatever he pleases. It doesn’t really count. What counts is, primarily, priests and bishops, and they are the ones who must begin to seriously wake up.
It’s not that people become conservative because, say, they like Beyonce’s voice (a lot else to like, anyway….). They become conservative because they develop that conviction.
Like millions of others, I spent countless hours listening to Simon & Garfunkel. Never could give a straw what their political opinions are.
Like the excellent Charles Pope in this blog post (and thank God for a priest saying to us that he “joined the church choir to meet the pretty girls who sang there”) I always felt a strong connection between music and God. Not in the sense that I though that there must be a God because I hear beautiful music (I am one of those fortunate being who always had, since childhood, a strong interior feeling of the existence of God; something you can’t explain to those who haven’t it more than you could explain how it is to be in love to those who never were) , but because in my eyes music must tell even to the atheists that man con achieve summits by which one can, even as an atheist, seriously doubt that this is purely the work of man.
I still remember the first time I heard, for the first time, this:
I wasn’t the youngest anymore (perhaps thirteen or fourteen), and it literally (as in: no air) took my breath away and sent such shivers down my spine like I had never had before. I sill can’t hear the start of this wonderful example of truly divine beauty without having a shiver sent down my spine again, every time.
Much as I admire Schubert as one of the very, very greatest, I simply can’t see in this the unaided work of a human mind. No doubt, Heaven came down to give us a glimpse of Its glory and majesty and stunning, aching beauty. And the same impression happens, by the chap in question, rather often to me (for example by listening to this and this, pieces by which you wonder how humanity coped before having them). If you consider that he himself declared that his Ave Maria was composed in a period of “overpowering devotion to the Blessed Virgin”, you get my drift.
Music truly catapults us in another dimension, throws away all our reasoning and rationalising and takes control of us in such a way that, with such an instant immediacy, really should let us think .
The problem with the atheists is that in their fantasy of omnipotence they think that man can do everything. Therefore, they will not recognise God’s work when they are put squarely in front of it.
Beethoven used to say (can’t find the citation anymore) something on the lines that his music (not only sacred music, of course; but also glimpses of Divinity like this one) was able to led people to God more than many priests would. Whilst a composer certainly can’t effect the consecration, I think we get his drift, too.
Words of wisdom from this blog (emphases mine):
You may have noticed that I do not use the term “same sex marriage” very often. In fact, I am making a conscious decision not to use the term at all any more. I think the term gives away too much ground to our opponents. Continually using the term makes it possible to believe that such a thing as a marriage between people of the same sex is possible.
I don’t use the term “square circle” because such an entity is not possible. Likewise, I think it is not possible for two people of the same sex to be married to each other. So, I use another term that I believe is more accurate.
I use the phrase “redefinition of marriage” or “so-called same sex marriage,” or in a pinch, “genderless marriage,” depending on the context.
Even “genderless marriage” is questionable because it is naming something that is an impossibility. Gender is essential to marriage. The move to make same sex unions the legal equivalent of opposite sex unions requires that gender be removed from the understanding of marriage. If this legal movement to redefine marriage succeeds, it will be creating something entirely new. Nothing will be left of marriage but the name, as I have said in articles and lectures called, “The Institution Formerly Known as Marriage.” But at least the term “genderless marriage” calls attention to what is at stake in the debate.
Whilst I do not get the one with the “genderless marriage” either, a very important point is made here: if we acquiesce to the demands of political correctness, we allow the enemy to shape the debate.
You see this everywhere, for example when whining homos complains that their “existence” is denied if one criticises their mentality. But more in general, even the use of that most stupid of words, “gay” to say “homosexual”, must be fought against with great energy.
A vocal homosexual must be an object of laughter and ridicule. The day we have started to suffocate our laugh for fear of “hurting” the pervert is the day we have started to allow them to give a shine of legitimacy to their requests for legitimation of their perversion.
I am pleased to see that whilst only six months ago I felt rather isolated in condemning the use of the word “gay” and using “insensitive” language, the decision of the State of NY is clearly shifting the debate toward a more aggressive language.
I had to make an effort to adjust to the accent of this chap. But boy, he has the right attitude! (The other two chaps are rather impressive, too…).
Over the entire West, we should wake up to the absurdity of allowing such abominations to be even considered.
We did so, because we accepted to call things the way perverts call them, instead of the way they are.
No, homosexuals are not “gay”, they are perverts. No, it is not a marriage, it is a parody of a marriage good at most for a third-rate movie. No, perversion is not a human right. No, we shouldn’t take such proposals more seriously than we take – for now – proposals to marry cats and dogs with humans.
Time to wake up, and have a good laugh.
Go on the American Papist site to see some photos of today’s visit of the Holy Father in Madrid.
I wonder whether the media will give the popular participation the same space they have given to the protests for the alleged costs of the visit.
I have my doubts whether these visits and mass excitements have a real effect on a country’s Catholic feelings and inspiration. Still, the masses should give something to think to some people:
1) the liberal journalists, who should accept the fact that their ceaseless shooting on the Church doesn’t do much to destroy her reputation.
2) the bishops, who should finally grasp the concept that with time and effort – not today, of course, and not tomorrow – there’ s a potential here that can, and should, be mobilised. If one is interested in defending Christian values, that is.
We’ll see how all this develops. But one can’t avoiding noticing the masses with a certain satisfaction.
You’d say that the National Catholic Reporter is good, on a good day, to line your birdcage and you’d be right. But every now and then (and invariably, through the pen of John Allen) something interesting comes out of that, too.
This time Allen entertains, edifies and instruct us with an article about Fr Thomas Weinandy’s (who works as theologian for the US bishops’ conference) attack on bad theologians.
Whilst Fr Weinandy seems to have in his sights Sr Elisabeth Johnson, with whom he had a very public disagreement not long ago, his remarks have a general character. The man doesn’t mince words:
“Theology may be the only academic pursuit where one can seemingly be considered a theologian without actually having to know the subject matter,”
“It would appear at times that a theologian need not actually know God.”
“Much of what passes for contemporary Catholic theology,” [...] “often is not founded upon an assent of faith in the divine deposit of revelation as proclaimed in the sacred scriptures and developed within the living doctrinal and moral tradition of the church.”
[Theology is degraded to} “the fun of being cleverly and sophisticatedly entertaining, or the thrill and buzz that comes with academic sparring.”
Wise words, if you ask me. I only allow myself to add that if the most shameless of these theologians are never excommunicated, and those less shameless but clearly heterodox are, on occasion, even made Cardinals one can’t be surprised if the faithful are confused.
My grandmother, who had only an eighth grade education, knew more than many theologians because she knew the truth.
As in pretty much everything, the example should come from the very top.
And so it came to pass that Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz was scheduled to speak at a “mega church” in the United States. The ecclesial community in question seems to be rather prominent, and has in the past been honoured by speeches from the likes of Bill Clinton (no doubt, talking about the spiritual possibilities afforded by cigars).
It turns out that after a community of perverts decided to criticise the ecclesial community as (you guessed it) “homophobic”, valiant Mr Schultz decided that the best thing to do was to wet his pants and cancel the appearance.
I frankly begin to think that street workers are shining beacons of morality compared to these servile CEOs, ready to brown their noses at every possible and impossible occasion.
I invite you to send your own message to Starbucks that this behaviour is counterproductive, by banning them from your wallet for a certain period of time. Let your wallet speak, and let all your friends and acquaintances know about this.
If you want Starbucks to know why they don’t get their money, you can contact them clicking here. Make sure to click “other” from the menu.
It is truly astonishing that big multinational companies be led by such sissies. Show them that if they want to be so idiotic, they’ll have to do it without your money.
As you can read on Rorate Caeli, the person who has maintained the beautiful “Divinum Officium” site to which I also link under Online Breviary, Mr Laszlo Kiss, suddenly passed away on July 11.
May he rest in peace. An “Eternal Rest” or ten for a man who has dedicated so much time to such an endeavour is certainly in order.
On a more pressing level, there are now doubts as to the survival/maintenance of the site.
Rorate Caeli launches an appeal to discover
if perhaps any members of our readership who are internet and computer-savvy would be interested in working on a project to repost the site using the downloaded files, so that the site may be kept alive and any edits can be made so that it remains accurate.
A priest is available to help with the text part, but he needs someone able to work on the technical side.
It would be ideal if a Congregation or Particular Church could host such a site… In the meantime, if you believe you can help Father in this project, with ideas and other relevant suggestions, please contact us: newcatholic AT gmail DOT com, with the subject “Divinum Officium”.
This is to help the search. In case someone were able to help, please contact Rorate Caeli directly at the above mentioned address.
Shocking, but beautiful, blog post from Rorate Caeli.
The post opens with these rather stunning words from the late Blessed John Paul II, the Not-So-Great:
“As the third millennium of the redemption draws near, God is preparing a great springtime for Christianity, and we can already see its first signs.”
John Paul II
December 7, 1990
One can only assume that in 1990 the tale of the upcoming “springtime” might have been believed, assuming adequate effort, from the most inveterate optimists. I do remember, though, that at least in the West church attendance numbers and more in general the grip of the Church on society were already on the waning, and had been for many years already. The involuntarily amusing statement of the late Pontiff is therefore to us rather a caution against uncalled-for optimism born out of wishful thinking, and a serious reminder about how many things have to be set right.
Rorate Caeli publishes a long list of scandals, all involving clergy or church personnel, happened in one week. Rather shocking stuff. They involve sexual abuses, mostly of homosexual nature, perpetrated by those who in the years of Pope John Paul II found it so easy to infiltrate the Church. The list gives one pain only by reading, but there you are:
1. In Colombia:
A Colombian court has ordered the Catholic Church here to pay the parents of two children abused by a priest $240,000, a first in this devoutly Catholic country, church officials said.
The priest, Luis Enrique Duque Valencia, was sentenced to 18 years in prison for abusing two boys, ages 7 and 11, who he had taken in along with their families because they had been driven from their homes by war.
Also in Spanish (tip: Secretum meum mihi).
2. In Illinois:
BELLEVILLE, Ill. – A clergy sex abuse case with misconduct dating back to the 1970s finally ended Wednesday when James Wisniewski’s attorney was handed checks totaling $6.3 million.
Though the case during trial shed a disturbing light on how disgraced priest Raymond Kownacki was assigned to minister at different parishes, it brought little resolution to a set of uncertainties facing the Roman Catholic Diocese of Belleville.
3. In Co. Donegal, Ireland:
A new report is expected to reveal how 20 priests abused hundreds of children in a Co Donegal diocese over 40 years.
The report from the National Board for Safeguarding Children in the Catholic Church, into abuse in Raphoe, will be published later this month.
The contents of this report follow an audit of the diocese of Raphoe by the National Board for Safeguarding Children in the Catholic church.
4. In Brazil (in Portuguese; tip: reader):
“In deposition, priest says he feared falling in love for former altar server. … When Monsignor Luiz Marques Barbosa, 82, arrived at the Children and Youth Courthouse … he was asked if this was the way he thought he would celebrate his 60 years of priesthood, amidst judicial proceedings for abuse and sexual exploitation of minors.
“A closer proximity to the young man began only in July 2007, when Fabiano turned 18 and got a watch from monsignor, ‘so that he would not get late for his appointments.’ .”
5. In Victoria, Australia:
A Christian Brother has been sentenced to more than 14 years in prison for sexually abusing young boys at a series of Victorian schools.
Seventy-year-old Robert Best taught at schools in Ballarat, Box Hill and Geelong between the 1960s and the 1980s.
He has been convicted in the Victorian County Court of abusing 11 boys, mainly aged between eight and 11.
Best stood in the dock without emotion as he was sentenced to 14 years and nine months in prison, with a minimum term of 11 years.
6. Well, this is certainly caused by the celibate priesthood. Oh, wait (in Plymouth, England):
“A child protection official for the Catholic Church has been caught with 4,000 pictures [omitted] .
“Father-of-four Christopher Jarvis was arrested after uploading pictures of [omitted] to a website.”
It is clear that whilst the Pope was having strange dreams about the “Great Springtime”, Great Sodomy Time had begun. As I have pointed out to in the past, sodomy and ancillary perversions entered from the main entrance, with all the honours, and the expectation of a new Church in tune with a new world. Apparently, the “Great Springtime” was in the menu, too.
This frankly reminds one of the official speeches of the Soviet regime, circa 1983: if I refuse to acknowledge the problem, perhaps it’ll go away.
One cannot but remain breathless, twenty years later, at the degree of naiveté reigning in the Vatican corridors in those years.
One of the scariest features of modern Anglo-Saxon societies is the inability of people to tell things as they are. Facts become taboo on the very day that some “minority” has decided that they are “hurt” from them.
A prime example is feminism. It has always been my experience (and I ain’t the youngest, and have lived in three different countries) that feminists are ugly. I do not mean here the actresses and singers who, after getting to fame (in which way, I will not discuss) decide they’re “feminists” to give themselves some airs. I mean the real examples out there.
When I was at school, you could see some attractive young women who showed clear feminist tendencies. Young and “idealist”, you know. Probably with the wrong parents, certainly with the wrong influences around them. You saw them here and there and thought: “what a waste”. All other boys thought the same way.
Some of the girls had begun to notice.
At University the situation had already radically changed. You could clearly see the attractive leftist women paying much attention not to be on the wrong side of the fence. In the conflict between their (still probably existing) ideals and the necessities of their fight against all other women for the favour of men (another fact as plain as the sun, but that it is forbidden to mention), they understood that they couldn’t fight the fight of their life with the right arm disabled. At that age, the ruthless disregard of Italian men (people who, when they are men, take no sh*t from any feminist, and may she be Claudia Schiffer’s pretty sister) already started to be painfully noticed. Therefore, language, behaviour, talk, walk, and entire attitude toward the other sex were already adjusted.
The ugly ones, though, continued to be feminists. They complained against the “sexist culture” of the country, the expectation – nay, the demand – of a woman being (shock! horror!)… a woman. Their isolation drove them to extremism, their ugliness drove them to think that if you’re ugly, your best bet is to be a feminist and thunder against the traditional culture.
The attractive young women began to smile at them.
The years went on, and the workplace brought a further polarisation. Women with an income and money to spend wanted to be extremely feminine, no expense spared to enhance whatever beauty and femininity they possessed (and in Italy, many of them possessed it in spades). A small minority of less and less vocal women continued to spit the same slogans, and voice the same concerns. All of them (and I mean, all of them. No, really!) ugly. The other women, the feminine ones, began to be openly sarcastic about them, even in the presence of men. Talks of sour grapes became heard, veiled references to certain unsatisfied emotional needs; at 25-27, there was a general climate where the feminist is a mixture between the village idiot, and the ugly village idiot.
At this point, only the ugly and angry were still feminists.
To my extreme surprise, this continued when I moved to Germany, albeit the conservative office world I moved in might have played a role. In Germany, though, communication rules were different: more allusive, less open, far more prudent. Italians are brutal, Germans were more reserved, particularly at the beginning. But they’d open up to you when they knew you better. Then, you knew that all the world is, really, the same.
And then I moved here. New, strange words were common usage. People were “hurt”, meaning that the facts couldn’t be told to them. The verb “to judge” had, for the first time, a negative connotation. Expressions like “significant other”, “inclusive” and the absolutely omnipresent “diversity” popped in. But some people didn’t even say “Merry Christmas”. That’s when I entered a church again.
Feminists were as ugly as ever. But now, no one told them. Everyone was “sensitive”, and “concerned”. It was just socially unacceptable to tell the truth, because a world that calls sodomites “gay” won’t call feminists “frustrated and ugly”.
Well, let us give a little contribution to address this:
You are a feminist because you are an ugly, fanatic, frustrated cow who never had from men the attention you wanted, and deservedly so. If you had been attractive, you wouldn’t have cared two straws for feminism. You know it, and you know that everyone knows it. Your hate for the male sex is the result of you losing the battle for interesting, caring and masculine men and having to make do with the gamma males, the whinos and the sissies. You were refused by masculine men, who were the ones you were interested in. This increased your hatred, and your exclusion. This is how you ended up being the ugly cow you are now.
In the meantime, men continue to be interested in feminine women, and women in masculine men. That’s the way it is and no amount of attempted feminist indoctrination will ever change this. Ask every woman (who isn’t ugly and full of venom) and she’ll tell you. No male (I do not mean “alpha male”; I mean every man with a modicum of self-respect) would ever lose time with a feminist. Feminists know it, and it burns. It burns because in the end even they are, at some hidden level, women. So they hate all men, and all feminine women, and call them names, thinking that they, the ugly village idiots, are better. They aren’t. Feminine women are far more intelligent and connected to reality, more balanced, serene and happy than feminists living on planet Hate.
The truth that every feminist must be told is very simple:
You would think that this “name and claim”, “prosperity Gospel”, “let me hear only the good news”-people (I do not know exactly how much the Schullers fit the bill; from what I have heard I’d say: pretty much) would avoid Chapter 11 proceedings. In the end, the combined energy of thousands of people pushing toward the same end must give an incredible… hour of power.
The last initiative was even more impressive. The Boss Himself would get the church out of financial trouble. The church doesn’t need to be sold, rather there would be a huge mobilisation of faithful; people from all over the planet would run to the rescue of a piece of real estate located somewhere in Orange County, California. Why they should do that, no one really explained. Eh, the Big Boss will hear us because we can gather a lot of.. power, so just shut up and expect the miracle, will you?
From what has emerged up to now, it would appear that Heaven’s lines are pretty busy. Be it because it is August and people prefer to relax on the strand rather than sending money the other side of the planet to a place they’ll never visit, or be it because the Heavenly Operator is currently on holiday somewhere extremely nice, there seems to be no great flow of money. If there were, the Schullers would be shouting it so loud that the echo would arrive everywhere in no time.
Instead, less-than-heavenly practices begin to emerge: like for example the one that whilst the enterprise was drowning in debts, revenue would have been used to prop up the pension fund of the founder, or to unduly pay church insiders first. I wonder what the Principal thinks and, in a non unrelated matter, what the potential spenders make of this.
In the meantime, the offers continue to rise and, unfortunately, the Diocese of Orange has raised its bid to more than $53m. I begin to fear that they are really intentioned to get this deal; which, as I have written on several occasions in the past, wouldn’t be much of a good news.
But the moral I would like to draw from the entire matter is a different one.
“Prosperity Gospel” doesn’t work. It’s a clear case of post hoc, ergo propter hoc delusion. Things don’t always go well. They just aren’t supposed to. We are not supposed to be in control of our destiny, God is. Our duty is to be obedient children, hope for the good, accept the bad, and carry the Cross whenever Jesus asks us to. We must do our best, and be of good hope; but we must never naively believe that we have, when all is said and done, any real (as in: somewhat irresistible, or automatically working, or invariably drawn from our prayers) power to influence what happens to us. This is not Christianity, but New Age bollocks.
“Lifetime of Impotence” reflects our earthly travel much better than “Hour of Power”. We are at the mercy of the Lord every moment of our life. This is good so, as whilst we do our best we are constantly reminded that we are ashes, and taught that basic humility that is the first step away from hell. Certainly we must do our best, and certainly we must pray with confidence that our prayer is heard. As to what will happen, that’s not for us to decide.
The “Hour of awakening” will, very probably, soon be striking for this ecclesial community in Orange County. I hope and pray that these events will persuade several of them that to fabricate a made-to-measure Gospel for one’s own superficial enjoyment and illusion of self-empowerment doesn’t work, and that the Protestant madness of picking and choosing isolated verses of the Scriptures instead of getting the big picture from the Only Church authorised to teach it and created by Christ is a factory of self delusions, and often going to lead to a rather brutal awakening in the end.
In order to make your holiday season more pleasant, some light remark about the strange happenings among “progressive” sisters. Hat tip to “Messa in Latino” for the blog post.
We can see below two example of nuns’ creativity. The first is the arrangement prepared by the nuns of St. Joseph in Cuneo (alas, Italy).
We have not one, but two loaves of breads, strangely on the floor. I am assuming that here the intrepid nuns are not suggesting to the celebrant to use the loaves for the consecration; it seems to me rather more probable that at some time during of after the ceremony the good nuns will divide the bread among them, thus feeling oohhh sooooo emotionally linked to the Last Supper, and at the same time tragically downplaying the Holy Communion. It would be like saying “If we can’t consecrate the Host, at least we’ll parrot Jesus by breaking it and giving it around”. But this is only, mind, an attempt of mine to explain why nuns should leave loaves of bread on the floor, which requires some exertion.
Even less explicable is why there should be, in near proximity to the bread, women’s shoes. Perhaps the ladies want to remind us of the feeeeminine paaaaart of creaaaaation, though they only succeeded in reminding me of the level human stupidity can reach. My fault, no doubt. The rest of the photos is rather more predictable: the many flags are probably there to remind the priest of “world peaaaaace” (without which reminder, of course, no Mass would deserve the name) and the photos remind one of a kindergarten, or elementary school.
Which, actually, explains everything.
The second photo is even less amusing:
We are in Argentina. A nun (we are told that she is one; she is not dressed like one, though) is taking her vows. Around her strange things are happening, with a multitude of people (some of them might be nuns; but we don’t know, because they don’t dress like ones) actually imposing hands on the lady and in this way clearly parroting the real imposition made from the (unseen) priest; one doesn’t need to be a genius in order to understand that the real and fake imposition very probably happen at the same time.
This is, how should I put it, not so funny. It gives the idea that the validity of the lady’s vows (provided she is really becoming a nun; which we don’t know, because she doesn’t dress like one) depends from the imposition of the hands by the community.
The chap in jeans further underscores the solemnity of the moment. You can say what you like, but these “trendies” do know how to make pomp.
I wish the lady in question all the best, but frankly the start couldn’t have been worse. As the Italians say, “If the good day is seen from the morning…”
As you can read here, the judge has given the “Crystal Cathedral” ‘s board time until the 9th August to submit an own plan to emerge from bankruptcy, and will decide on the 14th September on its viability.
As previously reported, the plan seems mainly to consist in asking for online donations from the (undoubtedly) vast following of the “church”. The “hour of power” (well…) “show” is supposed to be able to mobilise the equivalent of 100,000 people giving 500 dollar each. A “courageous” plan, would Sir Humphrey undoubtedly say.
Stranger things have happened, but after careful consideration it is still difficult to me to understand why people living in, say, the Netherlands should feel so attached to the building (not the ministry) to fork out the money those who personally attend the services do not want (or cannot) fork out. In the end, the message doesn’t depend in the least from the edifice and the ministry would certainly continue – albeit in different premises, and perhaps with a different name; perhaps even in the same premises for a while - after the sale of the asset.
Therefore, if I were a, say, typical Mr Van Hooydonk I’d be asked to pay 500 bucks, knowing that other 99,999 people are required to do the same, for the sake of the visual package of my favourite TV transmission.With the rather important consideration that Mr Schuller, the engine behind the success of the “church”, is not a young boy anymore and the organisation to whom the Dutch gentleman gives his money might, in just a few years’ time, have a completely different theological orientation.
But you see, this is always the problem with Protestants: you never know when the club’s rules are going to change.
Not so with Catholicism: a club whose rules are guaranteed never to change, with the Holy Ghost being a guarantor for that. Yes, in this club you are not entirely protected by bad board members, either; but to know that there’s a limit to the damage they can do is a great consolation.
Good luck with the “miracle”, chaps. If you succeed, at least the diocese of Orange will be spared from what remains, in my eyes, a mistake.
Brilliant blog post on “Ite Ad Thomam” about Modernism vs. Neo-Modernism. The blog post (the blog is run by strictly orthodox Thomist theologians) is particularly notable because its rigorous exam of the evil of Neo-Modernism doesn’t stop at the extremists, put points the finger to the widespread corruption of traditional Catholic thinking still present today in the very heart of the Church.
The summa divisio is between Modernism and Neo-Modernism.
The first is defined as follows:
Modernism is the idea that there are no eternal truths, that truth is the correspondence of the mind with one’s lifestyle (adaequatio intellectus et vitae), and that, therefore, old dogmas must be abandoned and new beliefs must arise that meet ‘the needs of modern man’. This is a radical denial of the traditional and common sense notion of truth: the correspondence of the mind with reality (adaequatio intellectus et rei), which is the basis of the immutability of Catholic dogma.
Modernism is, in its essence, the attempt to protestantise Catholicism, adopting the motto of most of their communities: we’ll make out our theology as we go along, and according to the need of the moment.
Neo-modernism is defined thus:
It is the idea that old dogmas or beliefs must be retained, yet not the traditional ‘formulas’: dogmas must be expressed and interpreted in a new way in every age so as to meet the ‘needs of modern man’. This is still a denial of the traditional and common sense notion of truth as adaequatio intellectus et rei (insofar as it is still an attempt to make the terminology that expresses the faith correspond with our modern lifestyle) and consequently of the immutability of Catholic dogma, yet it is not as radical as modernism. It is more subtle and much more deceptive than modernism because it claims that the faith must be retained; it is only the ‘formulas’ of faith that must be abandoned–they use the term ‘formula’ to distinguish the supposedly mutable words of our creeds, dogmas, etc. from their admittedly immutable meanings.
One can immediately see that this kind of thinking is infinitely more dangerous than the previous one. Modernism is an open attempt to tear down the walls of Catholicism and, as such, is bound to encounter fierce resistence; but neo-modernism is an attempt to infiltrate the city without tearing down the walls and is a less spectacular, but more insidious threat.
“Ah”, you will say,”but this is simply the Church’ reaction to the new times”. Exactly this is the problem. The idea that there be “a new man” in the presence of which capital punishment is not justified anymore is, in nuce, Modernist thinking; the idea that there be a new man who, in the new phase of evolution which he has now entered, isn’t authorised to wage war is the fruit of exactly the same error; and the idea that one can be saved by praying for peace or “having his heart in the right place” comes from…. well, no one really knows whence, but it sounds so good that it has become the unspoken mantra of countless Catholic parishes here in the UK.
The blog post distinguishes three degrees of neo-Modernism: the “vanguard” a’ la von Balthasar theorising formally not heretical, but absurd nuCatholic novelties like the one that Hell might be void – the author of this one, mind, was made Cardinal by the late Pope, though unless I am mistaken he went to his “reward” before the official ceremony -; the more moderate but still at times strange sounding theologians a’ la Ratzinger himself – and here a rather adventurous “evolutionistic re-interpretation of Resurrection” is mentioned, details if you follow the link – and in the end the mainstream, “nuChurch”, “home made popular theology” of the present times that I have mentioned above.
I liked this article because I often reflect that if a properly educated Catholic of, say, 200 years ago would be absurdly allowed to come back to earth and assist to a Novus Ordo Mass without telling him anything, he would probably not recognise it as Catholic and if asked would, methink, say that what he has assisted to was a Protestant celebration, of a very bad sort. As to the homily, he would probably not be able to recognise anything familiar at all and would say that the priest was clearly confused, and clearly unaware of the basics of Christianity as a religion. A lot of other things – from the half-naked people in shorts and flip-flops, to the people standing when receiving communion, to them receiving in the hand – would leave him simply horrified at the point of believing that he might have assisted to a cruel parody of the Holy Mass instead of the real thing.
Think of it, one wouldn’t need to go as far back in time. Any of our relatives who died during the Fifties would probably think pretty much the same.
The dismantling of the liturgy brought with it the dismantling of sound Catholic thinking. It is no coincidence that our ancestors wouldn’t be able to recognise either.
Another beautiful blog post from Father Longenecker, talking about the banalisation of the miracle of the feeding of the Five Thousand.
Even if I have never personally heard anyone trying to banalise the miracle in such a way, I remember reading something similar. In my case too, my reaction was of disgust at people who have lost their faith to the point of not believing in Christ’s miracles anymore, but want to teach the faith to others.
To want to explain away Jesus’ miracles is a clear sign of lack of faith. Jesus’ miracles are the direct consequence of his Divinity. Without the miracles, you can’t justify his claim of being the Messiah, nor his further claim of being God, nor his claim that he would take away our sins by dying for us, nor his claim that He would come to us in the miracle of the Eucharist. Without Jesus’ miracles there can simply be no Christianity.
The miracle of the feeding of the five thousand has, in my eyes, another very important significance that is often lost today: the Jews had to learn by heart, already during childhood, a long list of attributes of God. This was in order to avoid being accused of blasphemy once – after the bar/bat Mitzvah – they were considered old enough to willingly blaspheme. Among the many attributes of God where the fact that God alone can create food (not in the sense of processing or cooking of course, but in the sense that God creates the Earth and the animals that produce it). By miraculously creating bread out of sheer nothing, Jesus already sends the message that He is God. We modern Westerners may have lost, in a sense, this direct correlation between creating food and divinity: to us, Jesus is God, therefore He could perform miracles. But to a Jew reading Matthew’s Gospel in the first century AD, and who had the long list of God’s attributes learned by heart, the meaning of the feeding of the five thousands must have caused the contrary logical process: this man can create food, therefore he can only be God. Matthew’s Gospel is full of such references, that to a Jewish reader immediately say: this is God. God only can give life, therefore Lazarus’ resurrection directly points out to Jesus’ divinity; God only can take away (without violence, of course) life, therefore the “killing” of the fig tree directly points out to Jesus’ divinity, and so on.
All this is lost on modern liberals. They don’t believe in anything else than their own liberal ideology, and must therefore explain away Jesus’ divinity. They do it because when they have done so, they will be able to explain away everything else they don’t like. They will tell you, for example, that Sodom was destroyed because its inhabitants weren’t “hospitable” (or was it “vegetarian”; I never can remember which); that Jesus talked very, very harshly about Sodom because, well, no one knows anymore at this point; that he would, say, only have male apostles in order not to hurt the Jewish sensibilities. The list goes on and can become very long, I remember the sermon of the Canadian Anglican/Episcopalian claiming that Jesus overcomes his own racial prejudice by dealing with the Syrophoenician woman.
It really doesn’t get more blasphemous, or stupid, than that.
To attack Jesus’ miracles is to attack Jesus. It’s as simple as that.