Daily Archives: October 4, 2011
If I were in the mood for a joke, I could say that I love posting links to SSPX articles as they let me appear – semel in anno – a moderate expressing himself in very gentle tones.
The reason, though, why I publish this blog post with the link to the SSPX intervention about the impending Assisi III gathering is that, setting aside for a moment the rather harsh tones – at the cost of disappointing you I will say that expression like “immense scandal” seem over the top to me – I was unable to find any fundamental flaw in the arguments of Father Régis de Cacqueray, District Superior of France and therefore not your obscure Sunday ranting enthusiast.
If we set aside for a moment the incendiary tones used – which I do not want to condemn, being myself not new to the experience; and perhaps, perhaps feeling in me as I write a lack of that fire that must be burning into the heart of this brave Catholic – I am unable to disagree with the concept that
the scandal of Assisi 2011 will be substantially the same but less spectacular than Assisi 1986.
In fact, by examining the invitation made by the Holy Father and the constant, omnipresent appeal to peace – the leitmotiv of the 1986 as well as of the 2011 gathering – one cannot in my eyes escape the conclusion that, as things look today – nay: as they have been announced and planned – the similarities with 1986 will be far more pronounced than the differences. The very fact that this gathering happens to remember the old one is enough of a tell-tale.
This, without considering what the media will do of it all. To say it again with the words of the author:
Before the image of a Pope uniting the representatives of all the false religions, the reaction of the majority of men will be to relativise truth and religion still more. What individual, little acquainted with the Catholic religion, will not be tempted to be reassured about the fate of non-Catholics when he sees the Pope inviting them to pray for freedom of conscience? What non-Christian will see in the Catholic religion the one true religion to the exclusion of all others when he learns that the head of the Catholic Church has convoked a pantheon of religions? How will he interpret the Pope’s exhortation not to yield to relativism if not by thinking that it is a matter, not of holding to the truth, but of being sincere?
“Ah, but this time it will be different”, I hear you say. In some measure, yes. But I had to stop and read the following words thrice:
Of course, unlike the first meeting at Assisi, it appears that the prayer will be in silence, albeit very present. However, to what god will they pray in silence, these representatives of all the false religions? They will they pray to their false gods, since the Pope invites them explicitly to live more deeply “their religious faith”? To whom will the Muslims turn then, if not to the God of Mohammed? To whom will the animists speak, if not to their idols? How then is it conceivable that a Pope call upon the representatives of false religions, to take part as such, in a day of personal prayer?
Or think about the biggest difference of Assisi III with Assisi I, the attitude towards common prayer:
Formerly Assisi was defended by making a subtle distinction between “being together to pray” and “praying together.” Will they now be saying that there will be no common prayer, but rather a day of prayer in common? Instead of denying the concomitance of the silent prayers, shall we say that everybody prays separately according to his own religion? As if these specious distinctions were not manufactured for the needs of the cause. As if these subtleties were immediately grasped by the majority of men, who will retain only one thing: a gathering of all the religions for everyone to pray to the divinity, abstracting from any Revelation.
Harsh words, these (and I have spared you the truly inflammatory ones); but frankly, I can’t see how I could deny the substance of Father Régis’ argument.
The rest of the article is of the same high level of argumentative force, though of at least the same level of incendiary choice of words, too. When he talks about “peace”, for example, the author once again hits the nail on the head (with a sledgehammer, that is… ).
I suggest that you arm yourself with a prayer (why not try this) and a camomile and read the article in its entirety. Please forget the call of blasphemy and the apocalyptic tones, and see it from the perspective of the one who doesn’t think that the Pope has unwittingly sold himself to the freemasonry, but is trying to see what is authentically Catholic in this exercise; what kind of signals will be sent; what kind of signals will be received.
We will have to wait and see what happens, but let me say that I do not think that the one or other orthodox aside – certainly to be expected from the Holy Father, and certainly picked up by the few well-instructed Catholics and some fine blog – will really do anything to counter the impression of huge multifaith fest that the media will predictably give of this event.
So predictably, in fact, that to claim afterwards that the event has been distorted by the media would seem rather disingenuous to me.
I have read this on Father Ray Blake’s Blog, and gladly respond to the invitation of putting it up in our own blogs.
THE OATH AGAINST MODERNISM Given by His Holiness St. Pius X September 1, 1910.
To be sworn to by all clergy, pastors, confessors, preachers, religious superiors, and professors in philosophical-theological seminaries.
I . . . . firmly embrace and accept each and every definition that has been set forth and declared by the unerring teaching authority of the Church, especially those principal truths which are directly opposed to the errors of this day. And first of all, I profess that God, the origin and end of all things, can be known with certainty by the natural light of reason from the created world (see Rom. 1:90), that is, from the visible works of creation, as a cause from its effects, and that, therefore, his existence can also be demonstrated: Secondly, I accept and acknowledge the external proofs of revelation, that is, divine acts and especially miracles and prophecies as the surest signs of the divine origin of the Christian religion and I hold that these same proofs are well adapted to the understanding of all eras and all men, even of this time. Thirdly, I believe with equally firm faith that the Church, the guardian and teacher of the revealed word, was personally instituted by the real and historical Christ when he lived among us, and that the Church was built upon Peter, the prince of the apostolic hierarchy, and his successors for the duration of time. Fourthly, I sincerely hold that the doctrine of faith was handed down to us from the apostles through the orthodox Fathers in exactly the same meaning and always in the same purport. Therefore, I entirely reject the heretical’ misrepresentation that dogmas evolve and change from one meaning to another different from the one which the Church held previously. I also condemn every error according to which, in place of the divine deposit which has been given to the spouse of Christ to be carefully guarded by her, there is put a philosophical figment or product of a human conscience that has gradually been developed by human effort and will continue to develop indefinitely. Fifthly, I hold with certainty and sincerely confess that faith is not a blind sentiment of religion welling up from the depths of the subconscious under the impulse of the heart and the motion of a will trained to morality; but faith is a genuine assent of the intellect to truth received by hearing from an external source. By this assent, because of the authority of the supremely truthful God, we believe to be true that which has been revealed and attested to by a personal God, our creator and lord.
Furthermore, with due reverence, I submit and adhere with my whole heart to the condemnations, declarations, and all the prescripts contained in the encyclical Pascendi and in the decree Lamentabili, especially those concerning what is known as the history of dogmas. I also reject the error of those who say that the faith held by the Church can contradict history, and that Catholic dogmas, in the sense in which they are now understood, are irreconcilable with a more realistic view of the origins of the Christian religion. I also condemn and reject the opinion of those who say that a well-educated Christian assumes a dual personality-that of a believer and at the same time of a historian, as if it were permissible for a historian to hold things that contradict the faith of the believer, or to establish premises which, provided there be no direct denial of dogmas, would lead to the conclusion that dogmas are either false or doubtful. Likewise, I reject that method of judging and interpreting Sacred Scripture which, departing from the tradition of the Church, the analogy of faith, and the norms of the Apostolic See, embraces the misrepresentations of the rationalists and with no prudence or restraint adopts textual criticism as the one and supreme norm. Furthermore, I reject the opinion of those who hold that a professor lecturing or writing on a historico-theological subject should first put aside any preconceived opinion about the supernatural origin of Catholic tradition or about the divine promise of help to preserve all revealed truth forever; and that they should then interpret the writings of each of the Fathers solely by scientific principles, excluding all sacred authority, and with the same liberty of judgment that is common in the investigation of all ordinary historical documents.
Finally, I declare that I am completely opposed to the error of the modernists who hold that there is nothing divine in sacred tradition; or what is far worse, say that there is, but in a pantheistic sense, with the result that there would remain nothing but this plain simple fact-one to be put on a par with the ordinary facts of history-the fact, namely, that a group of men by their own labor, skill, and talent have continued through subsequent ages a school begun by Christ and his apostles. I firmly hold, then, and shall hold to my dying breath the belief of the Fathers in the charism of truth, which certainly is, was, and always will be in the succession of the episcopacy from the apostles. The purpose of this is, then, not that dogma may be tailored according to what seems better and more suited to the culture of each age; rather, that the absolute and immutable truth preached by the apostles from the beginning may never be believed to be different, may never be understood in any other way.
I promise that I shall keep all these articles faithfully, entirely, and sincerely, and guard them inviolate, in no way deviating from them in teaching or in any way in word or in writing. Thus I promise, this I swear, so help me God.
Very intelligent and perceptive video from Michael Voris. He examines the difference between the Anglo-Saxon countries (I include the UK), where the Catholic hierarchy has been occupied for decades with appeasing the Protestants, and Continental Europe, where the Catholic hierarchy has been occupied for decades with appeasing everyone, that is: mainly Catholics. And in fact, a European landing in the US would immediately notice the strong religious feeling still present there, at least compared with the standards he knows. Similarly, a Continental European moving to the UK would clearly notice how protestantised Catholicism has become, when compared to what he sees in traditional Catholic countries.
Voris expresses some intelligent concepts:
a) Protestantism leads to atheism. This is particularly evident in Europe, where one and a half generation of Communism could only scratch the surface in the religious feeling of Catholics – whose religious faith is now coming back with a vengeance, see Poland, Hungary – but completely annihilated Protestantism, that has been wiped out as religious belief from, say, the former DDR and has become nothing more than an embarrassed talk about social justice by people in funny clothes.
I had wished to hear such words from Pope Benedict during his recent visit in Germany. Alas, we got a visit to Luther’s sanctuary in Erfurt instead. Mala tempora currunt.
b) Atheism doesn’t develop overnight. It is rather the result of a gradual process, where the failure to transmit the truths of the faith leads to a slippery slope gradually ending in the cessation of the faith in God. Once again, I’d say that the empirical evidence confirms this analysis, and the only ones who can’t see it are the priests of the V II generation.
c) The solution of the problem is to rediscover Catholicism. Which seems easy to say, but implies the rejection of that protestantised “do not judge”, “love and do what you like”, “heart in the right place”, “provided you believe in God you’ll be fine”- mentality that is the standard fare of so much of nowadays Catholicism in the UK; if not explicitly so, certainly in the message that it is desired the sheep take home with them.
As I have opined very often, the problems of Catholicism are largely self-made. They are the product of five decades of self sabotage planned and executed from the Catholic Clergy, in what might well be the most insidious – if not the most spectacular – attack moved by Satan to the Church of Christ in these last two thousand years. It is, in my eyes, pure folly to say that the diffuse secularism of the modern world is the fruit of its unprecedented wealth. The United Stated is the most powerful, and its citizen among the wealthiest on the planet, but the religious feelings there are still rather strong. Similarly, we all know people who are very rich and strongly religious, and people who are poor and atheist.
Faith is nothing to do with wealth, it is about being properly instructed.
Rediscover Catholicism. This is the only way.