Monthly Archives: December 2011
As one year of the Lord (or, as the BBC Solons would say, of the common era; but they are politically correct, atheist cretins, so we’ll stay by the Year of the Lord) comes to its end and a new one begins, it might be appropriate to stop a moment and look at the great picture, away from the one or other controversy of the day.
When one looks at things from a wider perspective, one becomes immediately aware that nothing is new under the sun. Corrupted priests, heretical or cowardly bishops, and halfway courageous Popes have been such a constant fixture of the Church that the times in which these features have not been so present are justly remembered as luminous parentheses in the often rather corrupted – if glorious in so many ways – prose of Church history. As to us, the laity, I can’t truly say that we as a class would score particularly well when compared with almost all the Christian generations before us, bar the most corrupted.
Still, the Church towers over a great part of the Western society today as it did for most of the past twentieth century, and her inability to do pretty much anything in a halfway decent manner is – if you ask me – far more the result of internal incompetence and cowardice than of external challenges.
I am in Rome as I write, and can’t avoid being stunned at seeing – even more so, because I see the contrast with England – how much of our Christian heritage has survived the systematic attempt of the clergy to bury it under a thick layer or senseless, but comfortable platitudes. I can report with pride that I have detected not one, but several priests going around in cassock as if this was the most normal thing on earth – and no, this was not the case when I lived in Italy -, the confession times are extremely long in all the churches I have cared to look at, the number of masses – always compared with England – rather scary and the masses I have attended to well frequented and reverently celebrated, at least if measured with the depressing standard of our times . Vespers (unknown during my youth), holy hours, processions & Co. are clearly on the increase.
What I notice in Rome is, I think and hope, a small part of a wider movement. Whilst some regions continue to be clearly deficient and some bishops continue to be barely recognisable as Catholics – I think of the Chief Scoundrel Vincent “Quisling” Nichols, or of the Oberfeigling Schoenborn, but there are many more – it seems to me the world is slowly waking up. In the United States the fight against abortion is taking momentum, and the war to legalised sodomy and other sexual perversions has at least started. More and more courageous bishops are being appointed or moved to key positions, and this will not fail to have an effect in the general tone of the discussion in 2012 and beyond. I can’t say the Church is leading the battle, but at least some of the clergy are willing to fight. The people of the tambourine are simply dying, whilst all conservative religious orders are full of seminarians, and the “worker priest” of the Seventies is now a pathetic object of well-deserved mockery.
Of course, much is still to be done. It pains me to see a papacy unable to show more than milk teeth in front of the many challenges coming from outside and – far more gravely – inside, but this is already an improvement compared with the absolute absence of any teeth in the last, say, five decades minus the thirty-tree days of Pope Luciani. It angers me to see that four and a half years after Summorum Pontificum it is still in the power of every bishop whether he wants to consider the latter a command, a suggestion, or a joke – without any fear of reproach, let alone punishment! -, but then I reflect that only five years ago we did not have Summorum Pontificum in the first place.
Not everything is fine, but then it never was. We have, I think, a clear deficit in leadership (I mean by that practical leadership: the ability to keep the shop tidy, and let the personnel behave correctly), but then we often had. We have heretics infiltrating the very core of the Church, but this wasn’t different many times in the past.
I am often accused of being a kind of Catholic Pollyanna, seeing everything through long-term pink spectacles. But you see, I am a Catholic, and cannot see any other way of seeing things and remaining orthodox. Victory is assured, as the Church will never be defeated. Victory is ours already, as we are on the side of the Almighty.
Let us start this 2012 thinking of these simple facts, enjoying the signs of Catholic awakening we see here and there and trying, in our own little way, to do our best to bring our contribution of foot soldiers – which, make no mistake, will bring us hatred, mockery, and social isolation – to this nasty, difficult, glorious but, in the end, victorious battle.
Best wishes to everyone
I am now reading (thanks to the beauty of Kindle; the Endwaffe of the book lover, and a seriously addictive tool) the above mentioned book, the fruit of the labour of a Catholic convert, H.W. Crocker, III.
You have probably understood by the title that in Mr Crocker’s Weltanschauung tambourines don’t play much of a role. On the contrary, the title itself seems to have been chosen extra to anger those ready to accuse of triumphalism everyone who is not ready to apologise for being Catholic.
A small caveat before you run and buy the book (something you should do, if you ask me): this is not a work written to academic standard like, say, the skeptical environmentalist, a book which manages to reconcile rigorous academic research with easy-to-understand writing style for the masses. This is a book meant for easy reading, a train companion so to speak, but not at par with academic standards.
I can’t say I always agreed with the approach – a bit simplistic at times – but what this book certainly does very well is providing the reader with an easy to understand, entertaining and edifying description of the workings of the Church. The problems, the corruption, or the outright scandals are never denied; rather, the motive of the book seems to explain to the reader not only what has factually happened, but how even in difficult times the Church was able to keep the right orientation, never being perfect but always being, well, infallibly guided.
The orthodoxy of the author is unquestionable: this is a convert who very well sees the variance between orthodox Catholicism and the world, past as well as present. He stresses the fact that in all important doctrinal matters, Rome was always on the right side; and he makes so in a refreshing, ironic, very Catholic way, allowing for human frailties whilst never losing sight of the bigger truth.
The Christmas season is upon us and with it, for many, the waiting time at the airport. This book can make your airport much more agreeable, and for those of you smart enough to have a Kindle 😉 is available.. now.
I wish there were more of these books, easy-to-understand, entertaining everyday Catholicism books going against the BBC-style of secularism.
I am only in the first quarter of it, but I think you could do worse than order this book.
The Korean dictator Kim Jong-Il has died and, of course, his death has been saluted with regret and sadness from Catholics all over the world. Countless Catholic bloggers/ tweeters/ whatever-ers have expressed their opinion that the Korean dictator might be “surprised” and might “see the light of God”. It is easy to understand why they would say so: on the one hand there can be no doubt that the man was absolutely persuaded about the Communist ideology, and we all know by now that God likes conviction a lot and will therefore probably want the chap near Him for his celestial Afternoon Teas. On the other hand, it is clear to everyone that if there is someone for whom invincible ignorance could apply, this is a chap born and bred in North Korea and most certainly sheltered since his tenderest age from every Christian influence in the same uncompromising way as a Western child is sheltered from child rapists.
As to the opposition – which has come from some oh so uncharitable corners, who can’t even spell the word niceness – that the chap be directly responsible fro the brutal repression of his people, and indirectly responsible for the starving unintentionally, but certainly caused by his own mad ideology we – the charitable Christians, who are oh so good – can certainly reply that the chap was passionate even in that, and his government action can certainly not be counted against him, surely?! If we start to count inhuman cruelty against people who wanted to improve the lot of humanity, where will it end? We might have to criticise Che Guevara! He was also able to execute people by the dozen in perfect cold blood, and look at all the t-shirts!!
The uncharitable, ruthless Catholics may obviously say – and some of them will say, gloating in their desire for revenge – that there is something like natural law, and a chap like the unfaithful departed trampled it under his boots day in, and day out. Tsk, tsk, we reply to them, they have it all wrong! Being a blasphemer and an outspoken enemy of God goes against natural law on a much bigger scale than merely trying to make a better world! If we are therefore sooo charitable and nice with Christopher Hitchens, why shouldn’t we extend the same niceness to Kim Jong-Il? Therefore, Twitter is ablaze, and the blogosphere is awash….
No. Wait a minute. It just… just.. isn’t! Not in the least!
And why is it that whilst hordes of Catholics ran to their keyboards to express the most unbelievable theories about the – very probable – destiny of Christopher Hitchens – Christianity being too hard to them to let it be without the most improbable distinguos – the same behaviour did not apply to Kim Jong-Il, who at least has chances of invincible error infinitely higher than the ones of a chap born in a Christian country and who lived in the most Christian country of them all for more than a quarter of a century?
Where’s the army of people praying for him? Where are those saying that they will continue, yes sir, to pray for him now?
Strangely, the Catholic blogosphere appears to be utterly devoid of that wave of saddened sympathy expressed for the other deceased.
Perhaps is it so, that Christian rules are re-fashioned according to whether we liked the deceased? That our need to feel good is at a premium over the most simple rules of Catholicism, whenever we feel like it?
P.s. I hate commies on a scale you will rarely find. Still, I have said my three eternal rests for him too, and for the same reasons.
Par condicio, as they say in Italy…..
From Rorate Caeli, the most clearly formulated explanation yet of why the talks between the SSPX and the Vatican failed.
I have never read anything so movingly beautiful from the SSPX than this intervention. There is no animosity there, and no acrimony. Bishop Fellay simply explain where things stand, why the proposal is not acceptable and how things could – but probably won’t for the time being – progress further.
I have read and re-read the message and could find nothing even remotely linked to the “Taleban attitude” so often moved as accusation against the Society. Once again, they might have their fair share of nutcases in the pews, but the clergy and the top brass are not irrational or fanatical – if we except Williamson, in part – at all.
This is so beautiful that is best understood if read in its entirety. I therefore invite you to click the link and make an idea for yourself on Rorate Caeli.
Next time you pray for Hitchens, think whether at that point the SSPX doesn’t deserve the same treatment, at the very least.
Brilliant video from, I rather think, a Protestant.
Note that his take on the matter is perfectly consistent with Catholic teaching: “by all accounts”, Christopher Hitchens died an unrepentant atheist (worse than that, I add: a serial blasphemer, and hyperactive enemy of Christ); therefore, “if we take the Scriptures seriously” (we Catholics would say:” if we take Christianity seriously”; “if we think the Church hasn’t been giving us a load of cruel lies these two thousand years”) this means that “Christopher Hitchens is in Hell today as we are speaking”.
Still, he says – also very Catholic, this one – that salvation is possible up to the last moment, and it would have been enough for Hitchens to change his mind – and his entire life, and all that he always was and fought for – at the last second and sincerely repent to reach salvation anyway.
The main point, though – and also one that a serious Catholic clergyman would make to you – is about love: God expresses his love towards his creatures by allowing them what they absolutely want, even if it is not His will for him. Not differently, in fact, than a mother who would not keep her wayward son locked in his room his entire life in order to avoid him getting into trouble.
All this is traditional Catholic teaching, and I must have posted about all this in the past (Monsignor Pope has written beautifully about the last point, if memory serves).
Surprisingly, whilst everyone agrees with what Catholicism teaches about Hell in theory, many seem not to want to get the implications when the theory is put into practice. The present company is, of course, always excluded; so are our relatives and friends, because they have “their heart in the right place” (they love animals so much, you know); the departed are now – and how could it be otherwise – looking at us from heaven, or dancing with the angels, or doing some other soppy thing (therefore, we don’t need to pray for them; which in turn allows us not to think of our own sinfulness and saves time on top; all very convenient, nicht wahr?). As to people we know only by hearsay, it will largely depend whether we liked them: if we did, then God surely will do our bidding and we are not supposed to “judge”, but ready to judge that God’s rules are not applicable in this case, surely… The rules will, then, only apply to those very few people who are unknown to us, or absolutely disliked by us, or generally considered evil incarnate without any detriment to one’s own feel-good needs. Hitler comes to mind. No one seems to pray for the chap, whom God loved too.
Alas, the reality is different and alas, reality is nothing to do with our own wishful thinking, and all to do with the Word of God.
Before I leave you to the video (around eight minutes, but not boring at all), I ‘d like to linger on one comment left on the site:
Eight minutes of complete bullshit. Eight minutes of nonsensical mental gymnastics and logic that doesn’t sound at all peaceful or loving. Fuck religion.
This short, inordinate rant exemplifies what is wrong with so much of the modern (alas, even from people who tell themselves Christians ) mentality: in order to have credibility, the argument must “sound” either “peaceful” or “loving”. The idea that there be hard truths somewhere in Christianity requiring to be told straight (in which lies, by the way, the real charity, and peace of mind) does not enter the mind of the anonymous, and rather coarse commenter. The “f” word is the result of him not being able to make things up according to his own wishes, and calling this “Christianity”. Frock religion, then, if I can’t feel better about myself.
This explains very well what is going on with Hitchens’ matter these days: removal of hard truth instead of rational and orthodox thinking of what behaviour was put in place, what the consequences of this behaviour would be without final repentance, and how probable it is such repentance (which, remember, must be perfect contrition) took place in reality rather than in the kindergarten-fantasies of the Hitchens fan club.
A well-spread Italian saying teaches finche’ c’e’ vita c’e’ speranza (“as long as there’s life, there’s hope”). The flip side of this is once life has gone, hope gives place to knowledge, and then it’s either one side or the other, forever. This is exactly where Hitchens is now, and if your grasp of reality is that he saved himself I do not want you to be my financial adviser, or my driver, ever, but you should apply for the Pollyanna Prize 2011 at once.
As I have written elsewhere, we weren’t there and therefore can’t know. We can have a modicum of hope, because we know that the Holy Ghost tried to the last second. But we can’t really draw any specific, realistically grounded comfort from that, because we know that in the end it was the chap’s choice, and we know what the chaps’ choice was because he shouted it so loud for an entire lifetime, even when terminally ill, even when at an advanced stage of his illness.
Good luck to him and to his own poor, long- suffering Guardian Angel, of course; but reason, logic and all probability all say Hitchens is in Hell, at the start of a torment that will never end, and not looking very smart at all.
No, seriously: let us stop the soppy dreaming and let look at this like sensible adults. Some people go to hell. Actually, many do. This was a prime candidate, unrepentant to the last – public – moment, and so violently stupid every talk of him “seeing the light of God” should prompt only one answer:
give me a break.
I do not like quoting from the CCC (a text that can be defined fallible in his worst parts, and sprinkled with populism and VII-ism in all his parts; google “Abbé de Nantes” for instructions on the matter ) but on this day it seems to me the CCC tells us in a concise and rather easy way what happens to those who die in mortal sin and without repentance.
CCC1033 […] “To die in mortal sin without repenting and accepting God’s merciful love means remaining separated from him for ever by our own free choice. This state of definitive self-exclusion from communion with God and the blessed is called “hell.””
If you do not accept God’s love you remain separated from him forever. It is your choice. You have time for as long as you breathe. After that, time’s up.
CCC 1034 : “Jesus often speaks of “Gehenna” of “the unquenchable fire” reserved for those who to the end of their lives refuse to believe and be converted, where both soul and body can be lost.614 Jesus solemnly proclaims that he “will send his angels, and they will gather . . . all evil doers, and throw them into the furnace of fire,”615 and that he will pronounce the condemnation: “Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire!” “
Pretty clear, too. Hell is not a place where the wicked drink themselves to death before launching themselves in the next blasphemous rant; nor is it a place where soi-disant intellectuals can discuss all the shortcomings of creation whilst sipping cocktails, and explain what they would have done better or why this proves that there is no God. No, it is rather a place of serious physical and spiritual torment.
CCC 1035: “The teaching of the Church affirms the existence of hell and its eternity. Immediately after death the souls of those who die in a state of mortal sin descend into hell, where they suffer the punishments of hell, “eternal fire.” ” […].
Yep, more of the same. Hell exists, and after death there is no “if” and no “but”. Immediately after death, one knows. Hitchens once said he liked surprises. I wonder if he would like this one.
CCC1037: “God predestines no one to go to hell; for this, a willful turning away from God (a mortal sin) is necessary, and persistence in it until the end. In the Eucharistic liturgy and in the daily prayers of her faithful, the Church implores the mercy of God, who does not want “any to perish, but all to come to repentance” “
Willful turning away from God, and persistence until the end are sufficient – and actually, not so easy to achieve – to be punished with eternal damnation. Notice that it doesn’t say “unless of course you are famous and a lot of people like you”, or “unless you have said one or two phrases in your entire life which might lead someone to believe that one day you might, perhaps, repent”.
I could go on, but you get my drift: Hitchens was the very image of those who inflict hell on themselves. He did so insistently, violently, ruthlessly. His every action made clear that this was not one at risk of, so to speak, slipping into hell by giving in to his temptations, by being weak and frail. No, this was one clearly headed for hell head on, and at vicious speed. I shiver at the thought of how many souls he has contributed – and will contribute after death – to send to hell.
The simple fact is, Hitchens’ death didn’t improve any treat of him in any way. Apart from being dry now almost two days, nothing has changed in his moral state. The contrary is the case: death crystallises one’s moral state, and makes it permanent. When the wicked die, they do not become less wicked. Not a bit. They might see the consequences of their wickedness, but they will not repent of it. Unless Hitchens repented – which is, let’s face it, highly improbable – he is the same little son of a bitch now as he ever was, without the vodka.
It is, therefore, extremely surprising that this wicked, evil man be “adopted” by curious “helpers”, thinking that his own personal qualities (he certainly had some, and no one is completely wicked. Hitler loved Blondie, his dog, and was an extremely nice host and conversationalist with those whom he liked) might have helped him in the end even if he did not want to help himself.
Come on, this is not Christianity anymore. This is soppy “candle in the wind” Elton John-ism, kindergarten fables, and acute self-delusion.
Still more surprising is what you read in some corners, that for reasons unknown to us – or, as Protestants love to do, citing some Bible verse out of context and out of Catholic truth; which you can always do; always, without exception – Jesus would save a man who wants to be lost, who absolutely insists in being lost, because being a ruthless blasphemous bastard be in some way better than being a frail, somewhat lukewarm Christian as, alas, the vast majority of Christians are. The idea here is that the vast majority of frail people are less worthy of salvation than an unspeakably blasphemous, wickedly fanatical man, because the wicked man was passionate in his wickedness and a lot of people seem to have found this, in some way, entertaining. I found it disgusting but hey, I’m not the “nice” type.
This mentality, this “he will be saved because Christ loves blasphemous bastards who don’t do anything to save their soul more than weak believers” is pretty much the negation of everything Christianity is and stands for.
On the contrary, Hitchens’ death shows us how Satan tries to snatch souls through him even after his death, letting simple or deluded people believe they can be as wicked as he was, not repent, and get away with it.
As the news went around the world this morning, the eulogies about Christopher Hitchens began to flood the blogosphere. We were treated to a long series of articles telling us how intelligent, brilliant, abrasive the chap was. Particularly, it appears, when his ready – and brilliant – wit was fuelled by alcohol, which seems to have happened on such a scale as to let old Winnie appear a teetotaler.
As I perused the vast amount of more or less boring, banal bla-bla (a bla-bla whose banality Hitchens would, methinks, have been the first to recognise, and largely reduced to hints of “I got drunk with him”, “I spent entire nights quarrelling with him” and “how oh brilliant I must be if Hitchens considered me worthy of his time”) I couldn’t avoid noticing that no one of the authors I read asked the real question: what has become of Christopher Hitchens?
My answer, dear reader, is the one you imagine: bar a last-minute repentance for which there isn’t really any reasonable hope, and whose possibility we only consider because of the “ways of the Lord”, Christopher Hitchens has now discovered that God is actually infinitely Great, and he is actually infinitely screwed.
If we lived in a Country with half-decent bishops, we would now hear sobering words from our shepherds, warning us of the day of reckoning that will come for all of us as it has come for the freshly deceased; but with the important caveat that whilst the man had months to consider repentance and snatch salvation from the jaws of hell, we might not be given the luxury of such a long notice and might, actually, not be given any notice at all.
I have said many times that if it is true that salvation is infinite, then whatever achievement one may obtain in this life is infinitely small and, if he is not saved, utterly insignificant.
Therefore, today – in the middle of the choir of the champagne-sipping intellectuals dying to letting you know what brilliant minds they are – I allow myself to say that the humble, illiterate peasant in the most isolated, miserable village in Peru, who has lived a life of simple faith and obtained salvation, is infinitely smarter than all those – like, very probably, Christopher Hitchens – who bask in their intelligence and do not get that in the end they are, literally, infinitely stupid.
Whenever you read the next praise of Christopher Hitchens, please remember this: that on the day Hitchens has experienced today many who were thought intelligent will be exposed as stupid, and many who were thought stupid will be revealed as intelligent. On which side Hitchens has very probably landed is, alas, not very difficult to imagine and no amount of feel-good, let-us-be-nice-to-everyone wishful thinking will change the fact that irrespective of how many people go to Hell, if Christianity makes sense at all this was a prime candidate.
Say an eternal rest for him, if you can, nevertheless.
The ways of the Lord, and all that…
From several corners, one hears voices of concern about what the plans of the bishops of England and Wales for the Ordinariates are.
We know that in their vast majority, the bishops of E & W do not see the Ordinariates with favour. We also know that they see in them a danger that the faithful will shift on the Conservative side, many of the converts probably being rather opposed to the tambourine crowd.
It appears this hostility towards the Ordinariate goes toward an interpretation that negates the Roman dispositions about it: the incardination of the Ordinariate in the respective diocesan structure, the avoidance of which is one of the main reasons why the Ordinariates were born in the first place.
Up to here all would be, as they say, SNAFU.The matter becomes, though, a bit more complicated when we consider who is, in the last analysis, the responsible for this.
Rome is “well aware” of the situation, we are told, and “discussing it”; therefore, if awareness and discussion were a valid substitute for acting one could be satisfied with that. The problem is they aren’t, and so one isn’t.
The E & W hierarchy is not something grown from the soil like a bad weed, or fallen upon England like the Spanish flu, or delivered on its soil courtesy of German bombers. The bishops of E & W, every single one of them, have been appointed by Rome, and for every one of them a Pope has taken the responsibility, in front of God and his fellow Catholics, for what he was doing. Therefore, the problems of the Church in E&W are entirely (as in: 100%) the result of Rome’s doing.
Therefore, it seems to me that the discussion about the Roman “awareness” is a rather academic one or, more likely, one piously trying to persuade the readers that no, the ultimate responsibility – and blame – for what is happening in this country cannot be put there. Yes, it can, because this is simply what happened.
It seems, therefore, rather a waste of time to wonder what those who have created the problems will do to deal with the problem they have created. They will do what they always do: send a faint signal here and adopt a weak disposition there, in the sure knowledge that the signal will be overheard and the disposition flatly ignored.
If this wasn’t the case, we wouldn’t have this situation in the first place and the idea that suddenly the Roman pussycat would transform itself in a tiger is as illusory as the belief that a weak teacher may become a severe one, or an indulgent father start to impose a rigid discipline.
The buck stops at the very top, and the very top is what – ultimately – caused the situation we have today. The situation will only change when it is considered not good (pick your adjective here: charitable, sensitive, pastoral…) to be a pussycat anymore, and tigers will start to roar instead.
We will come there one day, as in this only unavoidable that after the excesses of the past fifty years the pendulum starts one day swinging the other way. I have merely lost all confidence that the present reign will ever effect anything remotely similar to roaring. This pontificate will be remembered for ground breaking instructions and dispositions, for which lack of obedience was passively accepted, and lack of enforcement confused with a charitable approach.
At least, some plans have been laid. Let us pray that the future may give us builders able to translate projects into a concrete edifice.
The kindly Bishop was not criticising a previous generation for failing to provide an immediate experience of the beatific vision. He was pointing out what it obvious to anyone willing to be honest about the life of the Church in the past few decades. Children, parents and young grandparents have grown up without clear teaching on the divinity of Christ, the infallibility of the Church, the real presence, the Sunday Mass obligation, the wrongfulness of artificial contraception, the existence of purgatory… to list but a few of the doctrines that have been considered too hard. That is what he means by the failure to pass on the fullness of the faith
His Hermeneuticalness comments with these words the reflection of Bishop Davies, made in the last days, that “this generation has failed to pass on the fulness of the faith”.
Whilst some Tablet blogger (a religious sister, apparently. Well I never…) did not miss the occasion to say something stupid (“No generation ever alive has passed on the fullness of faith to the next. The fullness of faith is beyond us all”. I wonder if she is just pulling our leg), the message of Bishop Davies is very clear, and well explained by the words cited above.
The last decades have brought us a probably unprecedented loss of Catholic Truth, a collapse in basic knowledge of Christian – and Catholic – tenets like I doubt ever happened in the Christian past; yes, even in the corrupted Renaissance, or licentious Eighteen Century.
To vast strata of the population – who would, if asked, define themselves “Christian” – Christianity has become a vague do-goodism and collection of platitudes that isn’t more resembling of Christianity than a Christmas Pudding. If you want to make a test, just ask the next person who defines himself “a Christian, I suppose” to recite to you the Ten Commandments, or the names of the Evangelists, or who was John The Baptist, or even to explain to you in simple word what a sin is.
You’ll be surprised. Or perhaps, not.
Modern wannabe Christianity has become a strange Gandhi-cum-Nelson Mandela soup, extremely sugary and to which a generous dollop of Nazism is added; the fare is there to let people feel good and absolve themselves of all their sins by celebrating the way others commit theirs. “Tolerance”, “inclusiveness”, “diversity”, and “niceness” are the new religion, and many delude themselves into feeling “Christian” (when they think about it; which must not happen very often as it is not very “inclusive”) because they are so tolerant as to approve of marijuana use, so inclusive as to condone sexual perversion, so loving of “diversity” as to encourage the spreading of false religions and so nice as to allow abortion, euthanasia, legalised sodomy and, possibly, polygamy and bestiality in a not-too-distant future.
How could it happen, would you ask?
My answer is very simple: it happened because with Vatican II (how did the sister with a passion for stupid phrases describe it? Ah, yes: “the greatest gift to our time”…) most religious have simply stopped teaching Christianity, and have substituted it for a soppy collection of platitudes meant not to anger anyone, and to let everyone feel good.
The result is in front of all of us: people who most generations before us would have never called Christians, and surpassed in their knowledge of Christianity – let alone, basic Catholicism – by every illiterate Catholic peasant or scullery maid circa 1912 you would care to mention.
Being blind certainly won’t help.
Now, in conclusion, our discussion returns to Vatican II, so as to make, if possible, a definitive statement about whether or not it is part of Tradition and about its magisterial quality. There is no question about the latter, and those laudatores who for a good 50 years have tirelessly upheld the magisterial identity of Vatican II have been wasting their time and ours: no one denies it. Given their uncritically exuberant statements, however, a problem arises as to the quality: what sort of Magisterium are we talking about? The article in L’Osservatore Romano to which I referred at the outset speaks about doctrinal Magisterium: and who has ever denied it? Even a purely pastoral statement can be doctrinal, in the sense of pertaining to a given doctrine. If someone were to say doctrinal in the sense of dogmatic, however, he would be wrong: no dogma is proclaimed by Vatican II. If it has some dogmatic value also, it does so indirectly in passages where it refers back to previously defined dogmas. Its Magisterium, in short, as has been said over and over again to anyone who has ears to hear it, is a solemn and supreme Magisterium.More problematic is its continuity with Tradition, not because it did not declare such a continuity, but because, especially in those key points where it was necessary for this continuity to be evident, the declaration has remained unproven.
It is almost Christmas, and yours truly has decided to write a short post about the way Christianity has traditionally dealt – in charity – with the issue of same-sex attractions.
We all know that, whilst the Church has always condemned the actual act of sodomy – we say this in a very low voice of course, as we understand the Holy Ghost is sending different signals now, as he has been doing these last 60 years – Christianity has always been very understanding of the actual luuv experienced – no doubt, because of the influence of the Holy Ghost – by many saintly couples with same-sex attraction.You know by now that an enormous number of saints was homosexual (Saint Elton The Adopter, and Saint Stephen Fry come to mind) as was an inordinate number of bishops, cardinals, Popes, Roman Emperors, and Jedi like, say, Lucia Skywalker and Yodaola The Minute Lesbian.
Already in Roman times, same-sex ceremonies were celebrated everywhere. It is recorded what one of the first bishop, Vincentius, had to say on the matter:
“We do not oppose same-sex partnership. We recognise in Roman Law there might be a case for those. What we persistently said is that this are not the same as marriage”.
This is the reason, dear reader, why for two thousand years the Church has known two parallel institutions:marriage (destined for those of opposite sex, and having as their aim procreation) and civil partnership (destined for those with same-sex attractions, but living together in an oh so edifying chaste life; actually an example for us all, wretched sinners…..).
As you can see from the writings of this early Veterinary of the Church, same-sex couples were basically everywhere, and their oh so chaste life celebrate by other Christians as a true example of Christian virtue.
This is why we read in Romans the following words:
For this cause God delivered them up to shameful affections. For their women have changed the natural use into that use which is against nature.And, in like manner, the men also, leaving the natural use of the women, have burned in their lusts one towards another, men with men working that which is filthy, and receiving in themselves the recompense which was due to their error.
And as they liked not to have God in their knowledge, God delivered them up to a reprobate sense, to do those things which are not convenient;
Being filled with all iniquity, malice, fornication, avarice, wickedness, full of envy, murder, contention, deceit, malignity, whisperers,
Detractors, hateful to God, contumelious, proud, haughty, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,
Foolish, dissolute, without affection, without fidelity, without mercy.
Who, having known the justice of God, did not understand that they who do such things, are worthy of death; and not only they that do them, but they also that consent to them that do them.
But those who, being filled with deceit, malignity and malice, did not have sexual intercourse, received in themselves the recompense which is due to their virtue, and stability was given to their relationship*.
As Vincentius already explained to us – and as it has been constant teaching of the Church these two thousand years – the Church’s censure does not refer to same-sex attractions, but merely to the sodomite act. The sodomite act is – at risk of being uncharitable; which we are not; or course we aren’t; perish the thought – not the best choice; suboptimal at worst; somewhat short of the ideal; and who are we to judge, anyway…
At the same time, said Vincentius, same-sex fellowships are different. For those, he said,
“we are very nuanced”. “Clearly, respect must be shown to those who in the situation within the Roman Empire use a civil fellowship to bring stability to a relationship”.
This is, my dear readers, why same-sex civil partnership have become such an indissoluble component of Christian civilisation, without which the Christian West would have been unthinkable. This is why, from time immemorial, the Church has celebrated chaste homosexual partnerships and honoured them in poetry, music, painting, and the like. Think of Raphael’s “Marriage of the Eunuchs”, or Masaccio’s “Peter Tatchell and his child-bridegroom”. This is also why your grandmother, who was justly terrified at the idea of global warming, did not object to her neighbours living in an homosexual – chaste, of course – relationship in the least, and participated to “orgoglio allegro” (which then spread to the Anglo-Saxon world, and became known as “gay pride”) together with all her female and gay friends; all of them celebrating tolerance, inclusiveness, and being oh so nice with each other. That was, you see, a Christian world. So nice!
It is really, really unfortunate that after two thousand years of celebrating diversity, of authentic Christian tradition of homosexual partnership, these miserable Birkenstock-wearer and assorted Sixty-Eighters should try to re-invent Christianity and tell us same-sex attraction is….. a perversion!
I blame Vatican II!
Just stop and think……
how charitable we all were!
* this is an ancient text, in the past believed an interpolation but now proved authentic after it was found in Vincentius’ own Bible text.
Both Messa in Latino and Rorate Caeli, (the latter in English) report about the now imminent refusal of the Preambolo Dottrinale from the side of the SSPX.
Whilst it is sad for me – as, I hope, for every Catholic – to have to write these lines (there might still be further changes and an agreement in the end; but at this point I am not holding my breath), it is easy to see what is happening: the SSPX will only accept an agreement allowing them to continue to fire with all cannons at the “Spirit of V II” and the toxic rests still polluting the Church, or will continue to remain in imperfect communion.This was the main aim of the request for clarification from Rome, and the result is in front of our eyes.
In times of Assisi III and of Archbishops astonishingly expressing themselves in favour of “civil partnerships” ( a practice, as you all know, widely practiced during twenty centuries of Christianity and only now… no, wait!!) one is really not surprised at the Bishop’s stance; then to renounce to thunder against the continuing state of popularity-seeking drunkenness of too large a part of the clergy would be tantamount to giving up the reason the SSPX exists in the first place.
Allow me, on this occasion, to comment on what I have read around: that Bishop Fellay be more or less forced to refuse the agreement because of the internal pressures from the right wingers, and assorted killjoys.
Frankly, I think it’s bollocks.
The senior members of the SSPX have met in Albano and have held talks all together about what was the real – I think this meant: the unspoken, the implicit – deal offered to them. You will remember Bishop Williamson was not even present. It can, therefore, not be said that the “hawks” have managed to somehow highjack the gathering and impose their extremes views. On the contrary, the fact that the mainstream within the SSPX – which is, I am tempted to think, pretty much the very best the Church has to offer nowadays – has decided not to approve the Preambolo Dottrinale is in itself a clear indication that, after careful consideration, this was seen as not giving enough guarantees that the SSPX would be free to continue his work unmolested.
I am rather sure a clear majority among my thirteen readers will be persuaded that whilst the SSPX is not immune from isolated cases of extreme religious grumpiness, the majority of their religious members sincerely desire the end of the strife and full reconciliation, if this can be made in the right way.
Alas, they have decided – without Bishop Williamson even being there – this is not the case. I admire their courage and determination; and their, well, chutzpah. Whatever faults you may attribute to them, the absence of cojones is not among them.
Secondly, I do not agree with this idea of the SSPX so jealously interested in remaining in a state of imperfect communion, because this would promote their work and leave them in a golden spot at the margin, but still inside the edifice of the Church. Besides the fact that these are not really the kind of people putting ambition first – otherwise they would have tried to become, say, the one or other of the 27,000 bishops in full communion, some of them cowards and/or heretics in astonishing measure, but undisturbed- it seems clear to me that the day the Society is in full communion its expansion will be massive, as the stigma of “rebellion” would be lost but the fame of doctrinal integrity would be intact. The SSPX has much to gain from an agreement, and if they had been driven by ambition this is exactly what its members would have done.
The brutal truth is, if you ask me, that the men of the SSPX put doctrinal orthodoxy before personal interest and ambition for their order, as this rather spectacular refusal of an agreement without full guarantees of being able to continue Archbishop Lefebvre’s work shows.
What a difference with the thousand big and small testimonies of cowardice and appeasement with the world coming from people who are and continue to be in full communion.
Seriously, I never liked the SSPX so much as these days, as they have showed in the most impressive way the cloth they are cut from. It is really a pity they should – unavoidably – attract so many protosedevacantist – or outright sedevacantist – elements. Can’t be helped, I am afraid, sedevacantism being so fragmented and litigious that the attraction of a substantial, rock-solid organisation with spread presence must be irresistible to many of them.
Still: thank God for the SSPX!
The debate over same-sex “marriage” should never be seen in isolation. In the same way that the right to visit a loved one in the hospital was not the ultimate goal, marriage is not the ultimate goal. The ultimate goal is to eradicate from public life any hint or suggestion of the idea that homosexual relationships are not in every way equivalent to heterosexual relationships.
The rest of this brilliant blog post is here.
The Sodonazis are after you.
United Kingdom, Year of the Lord 2022…..erm, no, apologies: Year 2022 of the Common Era.
The UK Government has recently approved a law recognising “Civil Fellowships”. Through “Civil Fellowships”, the “smart” community (that is: those who have sexual intercourse with dogs, sheep and other animals; the word “bestiality” is now considered “smartphobic”, and a criminal offence) are allowed to have their “union” recognised by the Government, with various provisions to protect, say, the dog in case of death of his “partner”. Obviously, civil fellowship gives the couple right to adopt children, or dogs, or other animals. Nothing new in that, right? It has always happened and Old MacDonald had a farm, too….
The smart community is very proud, and Liberal England rejoices at the new legislation. “Inclusive” and “Progressive”, it is defined. The PM David Chameleon defined it “Conservative”, because “Civil Fellowships” are, clearly, family and the Conservative Party protects the family.
In an interesting development the Catholic Archbishop of Soho & Sodom, Vincent Jokeson, declared:
“In this country, we were very nuanced. We did not oppose smart civil fellowships. We recognized that in English law there might be a case for those. What we persistently said is that these are not the same as marriage.”
So, says the Bishop, provided you don’t think this is a marriage, it is actually fine. We are “nuanced” here in Britain, and Christianity be stuffed.
There is a little problem though, because the reigning Pope, Christinger, had expressed himself – not saying anything new of course, but doing nothing else than repeating the most banal concepts of Christianity – already in 2017 as follows:
Although the particular inclination of the zoophile person is not a sin, it is a more or less strong tendency ordered toward an intrinsic moral evil; and thus the inclination itself must be seen as an objective disorder.
Therefore special concern and pastoral attention should be directed toward those who have this condition, lest they be led to believe that the living out of this orientation in zoophile activity is a morally acceptable option. It is not.
We have therefore, as we write the year 2022, an evident conflict between basic Christianity and the “nuanced” bishop of Soho & Sodom, Jokeson.
Criticised from, well, the Christians, and in particular from the “Catholic Harold”, Bishop Jokeson “answered” as follows:
Clearly, respect must be shown to those who in the situation in England use a civil fellowship to bring stability to a relationship
It is clear that to our bishop, relationships between – or among; you never know – sexual perverts is something to which “respect must be shown”. More so, he recognises their “relationship” as something that must be helped to achieve “stability”. The bishop clearly thinks that if zoophiles do not have stable relationships, this is bad. “Let’s help Jonathan and Bella to bring stability to their relationship”, he says to himself, “as “respect must be shown” to their civil fellowship. “Clearly”!
In order to make his thinking more clear, Bishop Jokeson
said the key distinction between civil fellowship and marriage is that the former does not “in law contain a required element of sexual relationships”.
It is not clear what this means, as the Civil Fellowships were legalised for no other reason than to give a legal sanction to the sexual behaviour of those afflicted by such a perversion. Zoophilia is not being “friend” with Fido. It really isn’t! Please don’t let me get into the details, but it seems as we write the year of.. em, the year 2022 of the Common Era, bishop Jokeson is the only one pretending not to know what this is all about. Truly, this is hypocrisy beyond belief.
More on the subject from the Bishop:
“One-love fellowships are not marriage because they have no root in a sexual relationship, which marriage does,” he explained. “And that’s the distinction that I think it’s important for us to understand, that marriage is built on the sexual partnership between a man and a woman which is open to children, to their nurture and education.”
“Pay attention, children”, says the bishop, “this is an important distinction! Marriage is open to nurture and education but screwing Bella, the female Belgian shepherd, isn’t! Therefore, we must call the latter relationship (to which, as we have said, “clearly” “respect must be shown” and which must be helped to “stability”) with a different name! Don’t confuse the two, little ones!”
Bishop Jokeson concluded his argument with the following words:
So while bishops Jokeson said we must “respect the existence of one-love fellowship in law,” he said, “the point we are at now is to say that they are not the same as marriage.”
Ah, now Christians all over the world will be satisfied. We have said it isn’t marriage, therefore everything is fine! How “nuanced” has England become in 2022!
That’s the point “we are at now”. Christianity, now, has no point.
Apart from the frontal conflict with the most elementary Christianity – that I will not even start to explain, as even the most tragically retarded liberal would exactly know what the point is – there is an additional matter, on which the Catholic Harold takes position as follows:
There’s one new element in that answer: the preposterous argument that “one-love fellowships are not marriage because they have no root in a sexual relationship, which marriage does.” In other words, they’re not like marriage at all. But of course they’re like marriage in one very important respect: that they have as a fundamental defining element that those in such unions have the legal right to adopt children.
The “Harold” is, of course, right, then in 2022 England, one-love fellowships have the right to adopt children (and dogs, and other animals). This is something considered too absurd even to think about only 50 years before, but now part of the common feeling of the nation, of which the PM Minister Chameleon is an enthusiastic supporter. So much so, that Bishop Jokeson himself thinks these unions are worthy of “respect”, and the civil fellowship are good because they help to “bring stability” to them.
Aren’t we all oh so inclusive.
The Harold again:
“This isn’t the first time Archbishop Jokeson has said he accepts and supports these unions, and has attempted to father his views on the bishops’ conference: in the immediate aftermath of Pope Christinger’s visit, in September of 2020, he claimed that the bishops weren’t against them and was on record with saying”:
“In this country, we were very nuanced. We did not oppose smart civil fellowship. We recognized that in English law there might be a case for those. What we persistently said is that these are not the same as marriage.”
Get this? “We persistently say it’s not the same as marriage”.
Job done, then! Bravo! !
The UK Bishops are stupid because they can’t think with their brains.
This is the most gentle thing that can be said of them: stupid, cretins, morons.
If I wanted to say the truth, I’d say: atheists, or cowards, or heretics, or prostitutes, or rather all of these things together.
To persuade yourself of the plague represented by those who should at least aspire to be our shepherds – they don’t want that, of course; they want to be our friends, or good uncles, which is very different – you only need to look here. After which I think that – after having been severely tested by that man, the “nuanced” bloke – to shut up is, by far, a worse sin than to speak out.
I am, very frankly, sick and tired of this bunch of cretins making a mockery of Christianity day in, and day out. It makes me feel ashamed of being a Catholic – which I am not, of course -. It makes me feel that they are ashamed of Jesus, ashamed of Catholicism, ashamed of saying what they stand for.
This kind of crap reminds me of the slimy attempts of Scientology to recruit people: trying to leverage on people’s dissatisfaction with their own lives, without actually telling what they are about. More importantly, this kind of crap tells me our bishops, very simply, don’t believe in God.
Can you imagine, for a second or in a joke, Padre Pio recurring to stupid photos like that one in the link, saying absolutely nothing – but which are ideal, though, if you are afraid of Christian imagery – to encourage lapsed Catholics to go back to the fold? How can it be that every one of the thousands and thousands of blogs maintained by simple Catholics is full of images of Christ, the Blessed Virgin, & Co., and our disgraceful bishops’ effort must look as if it had come out of a politically correct Procter & Gamble marketing seminar? Even in the post-Vatican II times I grew up in, no priest was ever ashamed of putting a santino – a small sacred image – in your hands when they saw you praying in church. A simple gesture, saying what they believe in. If they would give people elegantly shaped brochures with more or less elaborate crap but no Christian imagery, everyone would know that whatever they are trying to sell you is nothing to do with Christ. Exactly!
Can someone explain to me to what, or Whom, a lapsed Catholic should feel encouraged to go back to, if the message is not brought to him? Would I believe someone telling me to believe in something he doesn’t even have the gut to show me? Have you ever seen Christian evangelisation without Christ? What kind of cowardice is this? No, let me rephrase it: what kind of idiocy is this? No, let me rephrase it: what kind of atheism is this?
The Church in England is led by such tools, such unspeakable cretins, that to think them cretins – rather than willing accomplices of the secular society, and prostitutes of the secular world whose approval they so ardently desire – is really the most charitable thing that can be said about them, and I frankly feel a bit of a Pollyanna in calling them so.
The stench is becoming unbearable and – as almost always in these last fifty years – Rome sleeps; or travels; or talks.
The UK bishops are wolves in sheep’s clothes. Particularly that one, the leader of the pack, the “nuanced” one.
It seems to me that to our bishops, with possibly no exception at least in England, Christianity is nothing more than a convenient excuse to, as they say in Italy, strofinarsi alle gonne del Potere, “rub themselves to the Power’s rocks”. It seems unthinkable to me that in I do not say Christian Europe, but even the Diocese of Sodom – if such had ever existed; which it didn’t, as Sodom was destroyed and everyone in it killed for reasons I’d like some UK bishop to explain to me if he can – the local bishop could have expressed himself in favour of so-called civil partnerships, under the – I am being charitable again – drug- or alcohol-fueled impression that they be “not sexual”. In Christian times, one would have been burnt at the stake for much, much less, and deservedly so. Alas, at times I wonder whether we are living in Christian times. Our bishops certainly aren’t.
This is why I tell you that the UK bishops are stupid: because the most stupid, or blindest part of me still refuses to see that they are, en bloc, sold to the enemy, and calling themselves Christian only as an excuse for a life of privilege, ego-gratification and personal influence. To them, Christ and the Blessed Virgin are embarrassments they try not to mention, and do not even show when they ask people – which they do just because they somehow have to; at Christmas and Easter at least – to go back to Him.
I am a wretched sinner, and I can’t think without a certain sense of discomfort of what might become of me if I were to be struck dead, this very moment, unwarned and perhaps unprepared; but one thing I can tell you: I wouldn’t swap my cards with those of any English bishop you’d care to mention. Not one.
Truly, I am sick and tired.
God bless the SSPX, The FSSP, all the good blogging priests and all those good priests in England and Wales – and elsewhere; think France! – who carry on in the midst of a hierarchy sabotaging their efforts every day, and making the work of Satan. Non praevalebunt, I know; but Lord, it sends my adrenaline levels to the moon.
If it’s hard for me to bear, just think how hard it must be for the good priests.