In occasion of the now widely publicised conversions celebrated today in Westminster Cathedral, I allow myself to give my little piece of advice to those thinking of conversion.
This little advice is given in charity (the real one. Fake charity is for whinos, and Anglicans…). Charity requires that one tells the truth out of love. Calls of “who are you to judge” don’t have any effect with true Catholics. Catholics deal with Truth, not false compassion. Anglicans need to be told the Truth without any fear that they might be “hurt”. They’re heretics, of course they will! It’s not a walk in the park, it’s two systems of values clashing, and they can’t be both right.
Charity requires the Truth, and the Truth said whole. Those who aren’t ready to undergo a painful process to reach the Truth can avoid wasting time reading this. If only one reads and understands, the time will not have been spent in vain.
Please, have a chamomile tea first 😉
1) There is only One Church, and it is not the Anglican one.
2) Christians are divided into: a) Catholics; b) Schismatics; c) Heretics.
3) Anglicans of whatever orientations belong to c) above: Heretics. Every one of them, however they may call themselves.
4) Anglican so-called orders are invalid. Anglican clergy are, for Catholics, laymen. This is Catholic teaching. No amount of self-delusion will ever change an iota in this.
5) There is nothing like a “something-Catholic”. You can’t be Anglo-Catholic more than you can be Methodist-Catholic. You are Catholic, or Schismatic, or Heretic. Are you Anglican? You’re Heretic.
7) The decision to convert is the decision to leave the Lie and embrace the Truth. Ego investments, personal preferences, how nice the Vicar is & Co. have no role to play in this. This side, or that side.
8 ) Every “converted” former Anglican who still claims to believe Anglican heresy (from the validity of the ordination of Anglican clergy; to Anglo-Catholics being “Catholics”; to whatever else) is a fake convert, sacrilegious and heretical. Better to remain a heretic from outside until one is ready for a real conversion, than to try to be a heretic from within the Church. Heretics are, by definition, outside of the Church anyway. Cheating one’s way to a club card leads to nothing and, possibly, to perdition.
9) Truth cannot be embraced in half. You either embrace Truth, or you cling to the lie. Tertium non datur.
10) Anglican doublethink doesn’t work the other side of the Tiber. “Two and two is four, but also five and we respect those who think it is six and will dialogue in chariteeee with those who think it is seven and a half” works only before the (notoriously lethargic) Vatican steamroller starts to move, but it leads to tears and excommunications when it invariably does. Those who think that they can export their doublethink and “tolerance” past the Tiber are in for a very late, but very rude awakening.
11) Catholicism works differently. To say “I’m hurt” will not make you right. To say “you’re uncharitable” will not make you less wrong. To say “you must adjust your doctrine to accommodate my feelings” doesn’t exist at all. You’ll have to eat the same fare as Padre Pio and St. Philip Neri, St. Francis and St. Dominic. No Anglican preservatives, and no choice of toppings. What a blessing.
12) The decision to embrace the Truth is difficult. It requires the acknowledgment that one (and one’s old soi-disant “church”) was wrong all the time. That one’s ancestors were wrong all the time. That one’s former organisation had no Catholic being or legitimation whatsoever. Nothing less is required. If you can’t say this to yourself with a sense of elation and Truth finally found, you are still a Heretic.
13) Truth will make you free. The decision to discard the lie and embrace the Truth in its totality is the healthiest and most productive single decision in one’s man existence. So healthy and so beautiful, because so difficult. If it wasn’t difficult, there would be no beauty and no merit in it.
14) Truth is like a diamond: extremely beautiful, but extremely hard. Are you ready for the beauty (and the hardness) of the diamond? Or do you want to continue to believe that the synthetic version is a diamond too? Choose the true diamond. Accept no substitutes. You’ll discover that its beauty is beyond your hope.
15) True Catholics will stand in awe in front of real, serious converts. You are in our prayers and we know that many of you will become extremely orthodox, wonderful Catholics. But true Catholics will attack without mercy those who attempt to import the heresy within the Barque of Peter. This is an unprecedented experiment, but will not be a door open to “Catholicism a’ la carte”. Again: forget the old Anglican ways, this is not going to work that way.
16) Pray Blessed Cardinal Newman that he may guide you. He knows all your troubles, went through the same pains as yours, sees all the obstacles in front of you. It took him years of reflection and prayer before deciding himself to the step. But once he took it, what a wonderful march he started! So take your time and be assured of our prayers and of the assistance of the Holy Ghost, your Guardian Angel and the Blessed Virgin. Take your time and prepare yourself carefully for the impact and the beauty of the Truth. It is better to carefully invest some years of sound investment leading to a copious yield, than to waste everything in a fake conversion leading nearer to Hell.
17) Best wishes and good luck to you.
Another excellent blog post from the “man with no uncertain trumpet”, Monsignor Pope of the Archdiocese of Washington.
This time, Monsignor Pope’s attention is focused on the image of Jesus that was smuggled around in the Seventies, and that still influences the Sixty-Eighters and other pot-smokers today. In those years – and whilst I was a child, I got my share of those years – Jesus was generally portrayed as a kind of a whimp, a girly boy unable to exert or project any form of manliness, a mixture of hare “krishna” follower and Gandhi with, later, the addition of a dollop of Nelson Mandela. Victimised, but as meek as a sheep; bullied, but always answering with a smile, and unable to threat or harm, this is the Jesus we had brought to us as an example. “Peeaace” and “luuuuv” were everywhere, and not a whip in sight.
Well, one only needs to read the Gospel to get a completely different picture of Jesus; a man who never said things half, and never minced words; a man able to openly defy his opponents in public, in times when conflicts were carried out rather less nicely than today, and “being hurt” had a different meaning than today; a man whose followers went around armed with swords, certainly not for aesthetic reasons; a man able to free himself from the grasp of multitudes desirous to apprehend him, which can’t have been accomplished without a towering presence and an extremely commanding, charismatic, utterly manly attitude; a man able, alone, to throw away from the temple an undefined, but certainly not little number of moneychangers out of the sheer fury of his action, and the might of his whip. On this occasion, the contrast between the calm preparation of the whip and the explosion of irresistible physical power gives a wonderful example of the manliness of Jesus’ behaviour.
No, this was no pink-shirted, manicured, anti-wrinkle-lotioned, tubular-jeans-wearing metrosexual; this was a real man, oozing masculinity in everything he did. Try to imagine the scene of St. Matthew’s conversion and tell me whether it is compatible with anything else than the most commanding authority. Then try to imagine how Gandhi or Deepak Chopra would have tried to achieve the same result, and you’ll know the difference.
You see this everywhere in the Gospels, as the words and gestures of Jesus are always accompanied by an undercurrent of sheer authority, a commanding stance, the attitude of one who knows that he will be obeyed everytime he wants. Even scourged almost to death, Jesus talks to Pilate from a position of utter power, and leaves him in no doubt as to who is boss. Make no mistake, this is no Gandhi.
Thankfully, the gently whispering Jesus of my younger years is now slowly being substituted for an image more attuned to the Gospel image, largely – I think – because of the excellent “passion of the Christ” and James Caviezel’s very manly rendition of the Lord. It will take time, though, before the Birkenstock-sandalled, tofu-eating, Cosmo-reading and Oprah-watching Jesus is replaced by, well….. Jesus.
Catholic Answers decidedly goes from weakness to weakness. As I have already written in the past – but repetita iuvant – they are a mixture of a forum where people attempt to make Catholic doctrine as they go along, and an “ask an Apologist” question where at times a theologian attempts to make Catholic doctrine as he/she goes along; things like “good suicides to go heaven” and the like.
Today, out of sheer boredom, I clicked the page once again, to see what’s going on. I use “predestination” as search item and find a couple of threads that make your blood curl, with the usual sensitive posters (they are generally women; further proof God is rightly spoken of in the masculine) clumsily trying to avoid hard truths and tapping in the dark about what they “feel”, or “imagine” rather than doing what sensible people would do, that is: read a couple of sensible books first, and in case find a very good (means: not a wishy-washy V II one) priest later.
Still, this is a difficult issue: predestination is probably the most inextricable mystery of Christianity, up there with the Trinity, and a degree of confusion is normal, though once again a good book or a good theologian is vastly better than trying to concoct a solution among blog commenters.
Then I went on the “ask an apologist” section, where in the past I generally – but not always – found sound “Catholic answers”. The first (and only) post I read was this one.
In short, a woman has a perverted sister who “married” (not!) and her husband – one is glad there are true men around still – says to her wife the perverted woman is not to set foot in the house again. Not when he himself is there – obviously – and not when he is not there too – also obviously; then it’s a matter of principle, not of presence -.
The wife writes to “dear Abby”, and what do you think the “apologist” answers? Something along the lines of “he has no right to give you orders, you are his accomplice with your submissive behaviour, I suggest you speak to a marriage counsellor; with your husband if you can but alone if you must”.
What is this, a Catholic Forum or Cosmopolitan’s letters to the editor? To suggest that a third person be put between man and wife? After the head of the family (read my lips: head-of-the-family) has taken a perfectly reasonable decision about the scandalous reprobate he does not want to have in the house he (read my lips again: he) has the duty to lead? Really? What do these people think a marriage is, a democracy? There are Christian rules about how a marriage works; Christians have applied them for 2000 years with great success; it appears for “women’s liberation theologians” isn’t good enough.
For heaven’s sake, it’s not like the husband is alcoholic, or violent, or a lazy good-for-nothing married in a moment of Samaritan excesses (some women have that; though I think low self-esteem plays a far bigger role). This is a perfectly sensible, reasonable man confronted with the smoke of Satan wanting to enter his home, and he takes a perfectly reasonable decision about how he, the person responsible for the spiritual welfare of the family, is to deal with that.
Or do you think the feminist “apologist” would remind the wife that the husband is the head of the wife, and Christ is the head of the husband? A wife with the blessing of a man who knows he will have to answer to Jesus about the way he led his wife, and takes responsibility for it, has been graced with a good husband indeed! But that third parties would come to the extent of suggesting another person is put in the middle is really beyond belief.
Tra moglie e marito non mettere il dito (“do not put your finger between a husband and a wife”), says the wise Italian. The Catholic Answers apologist puts an entire counsellor. What a feminist nutcase.
This so-called “apologist” needs a very good rapping before she is kicked out, and I truly hope she is never allowed to instruct Catholic women preparing for marriage. She should also be informed that even today, even today such an outlandish “answer” (all, but a Catholic one) would be considered the answer of a feminist bitch by every sensible woman living in traditional Catholic countries, where – I can assure you from endless, and continued experience – this “let’s put a third person in our controversy” mentality is just not there, and would be considered the result of an acute bitchiness attack and controlling mania.
I do not need to mention here – because every woman with some brains knows it; apparently not the case by some female “apologists” – that women perfectly well know how to deal with disagreements within the family; and have far more effective (as in: smartly feminine) ways to influence their men, insofar as it can be done, or the intelligence to let it be, when it’s clear it cannot.
I am truly stunned. Where I come from, the answer to disagreements is never “put a counsellor in the middle”, but along the lines of “he is the man you wanted to marry: now let it work” or “try to change his mind if you can, with sweetness and prayer and patience; and accept his decision if you can’t, because this the way it goes”. Apparently, it’s now the counsellors who run Catholic families. Pathetic, and so stupid.
I really must say it, but if this flippin’ American mentality has infiltrated the minds to the point where such rubbish is even suggested in a Catholic Forum, by a so-called apologist, you in the old U S of A are in a very, very bad shape indeed.
Catholic Answers might well be the most clicked Catholic site on the planet. The damage they make with their blasted “American Feminist” mentality can hardly be overestimated. These people do not even know what makes a real woman, but they spread their rubbish on the Internet on how to run – or to break – a marriage.
I was always surprised when I left Italy and these colleague in Germany told me “Italian women are so feminine!”. Why, of course they are, thought I. They’re women, aren’t they…
I began to understand, later, what was meant by it, and it seems to me the problem is not limited to Germany.
Fight against feminism and bitchiness, even when it is in disguise of “Catholicism”. If you want to see real women in their environment, try to spend some months in a traditional Catholic country and see how those among them who have been properly raised – still the vast majority, even today! – live, embrace and enjoy their womanhood.
They live far happier lives, too.
I have already explained in my post about the Catholic Onion that when the bishop acts correctly, his priests feel encouraged in going the right way even if this may result unpopular and conversely, if the Bishop doesn’t care for properly transmitted Catholic values this mentality will end up informing the behaviour of many of the priests in his diocese.
A beautiful example here, courtesy of Father Z.
You will remember Bishop Olmsted, the rather decisive bishop who recently excommunicated Sister Margaret McBride and deprived the Hospital of St. Joseph of the right to call itself “Catholic”.
It will now please you to read that when a good example is given from the top, it becomes both easier and more easily acceptable for the priests of the diocese to follow the lead and take the necessary steps towards the recovery of reverent liturgical customs. In Bishop Olmsted’s diocese itself, Fr John Lankeit is actively working towards a gradual elimination of communion in the hand.
His words are sincere and alarming: “What I witness troubles me. And I’m not alone” writes Fr Lankeit. You immediately understand that here is one not likely to throw M&Ms at the faithful during Mass.
Fr Lankeit puts the extent of the problem in clear terms:
While my main objective in encouraging reception on the tongue is to deepen appreciation for the Eucharist, I also have a pastoral responsibility to eliminate abuses common to receiving in the hand.
Notice here the double whammy: a) reception on the tongue is the best way in itself; b) reception in the hand causes abuses.
It follows a list of examples, seen “all too frequently”, which I hope will not disturb your sleep:
• Blessing oneself with the host before consuming it. (The act of blessing with the Eucharist is called “Benediction” and is reserved to clergy).
• Receiving the host in the palm of the hand, contorting that same hand until the host is controlled by the fingers, then consuming it (resembling a one-handed “watch-the-coin-disappear” magic trick)
• Popping the host into the mouth like a piece of popcorn.
• Attempting to receive with only one hand.
• Attempting to receive with other items in the hands, like a dirty Kleenex or a Rosary.
• Receiving the host with dirty hands.
• Receiving the host, closing the hand around it, then letting the hand fall to the side (as if carrying a suitcase) while walking away and/or blessing oneself with the other hand.
• Walking away without consuming the host.
• Giving the host to someone else after receiving…yes, it happens!
Some of these I had already imagined; others go beyond my ability to figure out how they happen (the “magic trick”, say); other still can only be defined as astonishing (the dirty hands, the rosary, the kleenex, the “blessing oneself” (??) and the walking away with the host as if it were a piece of luggage).
I am certainly wrong here, but I can’t avoid always seeing in the receiving on the hand an element of “I am the priest of myself” that, at some level, must be buried within the consciousness of the communicant. I just can’t avoid seeing the placing of the communion wafer on the tongue as a priestly function and besides, how one can come to the idea of receiving God the same way as he eats bread and salami is just beyond my understanding.
Father Lankeit doesn’t express himself in such terms of course, but one can clearly see the liturgical zeal and sincere desire to lead his parishioners to better understand the importance of Communion and of acting accordingly. He writes about this four weeks in a row. This is another who, like his Bishop, will be heard. More like him and his Bishop and the beauty and reverence of the Mass will be speedily restored everywhere.
Tomorrow 22nd February is the feast of the Chair of St. Peter. Whilst St. Peter’s feast day is the 29th June, the feast of the 22nd February is more directly aimed at celebrating the Petrine Office. This feast is, therefore, as Catholic as they come.
This feast day might be an occasion to explain to some non-Catholic in your circle of acquaintances why you are Catholic. When requested, I proceed more or less in this way:
1) And I say to thee: that Thou are Peter…. Jesus doesn’t say to Simon that he is a nice chap; or that he is very perceptive; or that he himself is surprised that among the apostles Simon was the only one to give the right answer to his question “Who do people say that I am?”. No, he changes his name and calls him a rock.
2) and upon this rock I will build my Church…. Jesus doesn’t say “I will build my first church”, nor does he say “I will build my provisional church”. Jesus picks a rock, and builds upon him One (1, Una, Eine, Une) Church.
3) and the gates of Hell shall not previal against it….. It, that is: the very same Church built on Peter, the “rock”. That one, and no other. Jesus doesn’t say “the Gates of hell shall, in around fifteen centuries, prevail against the Church I built on you”, nor does he say “the Gates of Hell shall prevail against the Church built on you but hey, let us be happy with a generic term of “church” so it can work even when yours goes astray”. He is very specific: he builds one Church upon one man and gives his promise of indefectibility to this – and no other – organisation.
4) And I will give to thee the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven….. This is also dumb-proof: keys are a very obvious symbol of power and authority and it is clear here that Jesus is speaking with extreme solemnity. He doesn’t say to Peter: “Peter, you keep the key for the moment” or “look mate, gotta go; keep the keys until I find you or yours unworthy, will ya?”. No, this is a solemn promise evidently made for all times, as his just pronounced promise about indefectibility must make clear to the dumbest intellect.
5) ….and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth it shall be bound also in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth, it shall be loosed also in heaven. For those who should at this point still not have gotten what is going on, Jesus becomes even more explicit: Peter has the keys, and the keys mean authority upon the faithful now and forever; an authority given in the most emphatic terms possible.
The meaning of these phrases; the clear solemnity Jesus gives to his words; the crescendo of emphatic declarations of such a broad and clear scope do not leave room for any possible doubt and as a result, Protestants have nowhere to hide. Whoever reads Jesus’ words with a minimum of intellectual honesty cannot avoid to recognise that the Only Church of Peter’s time (and of the following fifteen centuries) is the Only Church of today and that as a result whatever grievance against the men who run the Church does not change a iota concerning the position of authority of the Church. As to the complaint that some Popes were oh-so-bad (not much worse than many a tv-preacher I’d say, but laissons tomber….), Peter wasn’t immaculate either, but his shortcomings didn’t prevent Jesus from promoting him to rock of His Church.
To believe anything different from the fact that the Only Church founded by Jesus is.. the Only Church means to believe one or more of the following:
1) that Jesus made a mistake in founding His Church on Peter;
2) that Jesus was mistakenly persuaded that Peter’s successors would be good chaps, but had his toy ruined by the baddies who succeeded Peter;
3) that Jesus couldn’t count;
4) that Jesus’ words had a sell-by date, or
5) that Jesus made his promise of indefectibility without taking it seriously.
Or perhaps one could decide to read and understand the only possible meaning of such emphatically worded statements, as Jesus repeatedly made.
There is only One Church, folks. It’s the only one founded by Jesus. Simple, really.
In the last days, objections have been made to the fact that many of those who write about Catholic matters do so anonymously. As always, there is no scarcity of people who indulge in easy accusations of what they don’t like, and can’t control. Let us examine what this is all about and the many valid reasons for anonymity on the internet.
1) Anonymity is freedom. Unless one lives on Planet Pollyanna, there is no denying (not even by its detractors) that the protection afforded by anonymity allows information to be exchanged and discussed that otherwise would have never reached a wider public. This makes our societies (and more specifically the religious discussion) more free. This is important, as freedom of expression is an extremely important pillar of every democratic society.
2) Anonymity encourages criticisms of what doesn’t work within the Church. As Catholics, we have the duty to react to scandals and abuses we see around us, but we don’t have the duty to seek martyrdom (I mean here in a broader sense, as persecution or discrimination because of our convictions) if we don’t have to. Anonymity on the internet makes therefore not only democratic societies more free, but provides a better system of control for the abuses within the Church. If a Bishop tells you that he feels scrutinised by the anonymous internet bloggers, it’s because he is. This is good for Catholicism, and potentially vital for the salvation of the relevant Bishop’s soul.
3) The accusations of it being “coward” to hide behind anonymity are the most cowardly acts themselves. Repressive political systems are those who try to repress anonymity the hardest. The people asking bloggers to reveal their identity are not much different than, say, Saddam Hussein calling his opponents cowards because they stay hidden. There’s a reason why people hide behind anonymity and only stupid people, or people in utter bad faith, pretend not to understand them.
4) If you look attentively, you noticed that anonymity is one of the most powerful engines of progress. Whistleblowing sites could never exist without the protection afforded by anonymity, and they are a most powerful engine of correct behaviour and have now possibly become the most implacable weapon against criminal behaviour within corporations and public bodies. Why anonymity would be acceptable for them but unacceptable for misbehaviour within the Church (which, notabene, can include child abuse and the like) is beyond me.
5) The accusation of it being very easy to slander people from behind anonymity does not really stand scrutiny. It being very easy to slander from behind a wall of anonymity, the relevant information is heavily discounted. People have always written anonymously on walls, but this has never made what they wrote believed just because it was written. On the contrary, an accusation made from an anonymous person will need to be substantiated to even begin to carry any real credibility. This is exactly what happens on the Internet. Criticism of clergy is accompanied with facts and evidence, or it is easily discarded. This is another of the beauties of the Internet. If, say, a Bishop gives scandal by participating to the “ordination” of a “bishopess” or some Protestant ecclesial community, the information will be there with the facts: day, people present, photos, videos, the whole enchilada. It is obvious to the meanest intelligence what counts here is the fact, the provenance being fully irrelevant in the economy of the scandal.
6) It is undeniable, though, that insisted, repeated slander may – even if unsubstantiated – have some effect in the long-term on the person affected. Voltaire used to say something on the lines of “keep on slandering: something will stick”. There you are, you will say, but the best protection against such slander is, once again, anonymity! Every non addetto ai lavori (as journalist, or priest) who willingly renounces to his own anonymity when he writes on the internet is allowing his ego to play him the most dangerous of tricks. Be assured that there will be a price to pay, as recently seen in the case of a “commenterer” known to many of us.
7) It has always been known to people with some salt in their brains – a minority, I sometimes think – that a wise man picks up his own fights. It is utterly illogical (nay: it is outright stupid) to think that what we write will not have an impact on our future – allowing for countless forms of covert discrimination, never to be proved and impossible to trace or fight against – for decades to come. It is the very freedom of our societies which makes this unavoidable.
This may not be a problem for a journalist (who makes of it his profession, and for whom his own name is a brand and professional tool), but can be a huge problem for everyone else. A wise man will prudently decide himself if and when and under which conditions to face a conflict because of his religious convictions, but a moron will gladly expose himself to every kind of retaliation of which he might even never become aware (lost work opportunities, or business opportunities, or both).
8 ) Even anti-discrimination legislation wisely chooses the same way as Internet bloggers. Information about health, age, religion cannot be asked by a potential employer. There is a reason why, and it is that such information opens huge doors to discrimination. How stupid would it be to legislate against such form of discrimination, whilst demanding that bloggers voluntarily expose themselves to it, irrevocably, for all time to come. Make no mistake, religion is – and always will be – the biggest cause of hatred and conflict. It’s just the way it is and he who doesn’t see it is in serious need of waking up.
9) Stupid commenters were never considered less stupid because they are not anonymous. Intelligent commenters were never considered less intelligent because they are. I – and everyone else – will pick my sites and blogs according to the validity of their content, not according to the degree of anonymity of their writers. Just to make an example, “Splintered Sunrise” is an excellent blog. Is anyone concerned that it is anonymous? Not I.
10) We have recently had another example of how beautiful anonymity is. I do not know whether priests are allowed to blog anonymously (albeit, by definition if they really wanted they’d be able to do it anyway), but had Fr. Mildew written an anonymous blog, he’d have been much more relaxed against the bullying of Mgr. Basil Loftus. His blog is now closed. QED.
This is of course not meant to be a justification of my being strictly anonymous, for which there is no need. Rather a caveat to all those who still haven’t understood the potentially devastating influence of a sustained, prolonged Internet presence with their own names, particularly when the subject matter is not neutral (like photography, dogs, or gardening) but serious, highly emotional issues like politics and, most importantly, religion.
Wake up to the reality of the Internet. The immense freedom it harbours also hides dangers for your own professional future; dangers the more devastating because subtle and able to damage you whilst keeping you fully unaware of what is happening. And if you think that this problem only concerns people with extreme views or roaming the internet with illegal purposes ask everyone who works for reference checking firms, and think again.
Even for the heretical standards of the Church in Germany, what has happened in the last days leaves one rather surprised.
The Church in Germany has invited 300 “experts” for a “conference”, described as “the first of his kind”, to “discuss possible reforms”. This is breathtaking. These people think and act as if they were the ones who call the shots and decide what happens in the Church; probably (cough) because in the past they were allowed to do so. This conference doesn't discuss of proper internal matters (say: how to reduce administration costs faced with the possible collapse of the Kirchensteuer) but, as expected, wants to be an ecumenical council in miniature, suggesting on Rome's behalf… what is wrong with God's rules.
Turns out they decide there is a lot that is wrong with God's rules. The biggest injustice perpetrated by God against Zollitsch's faithful (that is: faithful to him) sheep appears to be male ordination. Now, Zollitsch's Sturmtruppen understand priesthood in itself should be left to males, but women deacon should not be a taboo, surely? Look, they could even celebrate marriages outside of Mass! what a “liberation”, and a feminist triumph!
Now, Mister Zollitsch, being clearly Episcopalian, is not informed about the unchangeable nature of the sacrament of holy orders; but it surprises me that the others 300 did not know it either; unless of course they are also Episcopalians, which at this point appears more than probable.
Perhaps some good souls will inform this unhappy bunch that in the Catholic Church taboos are there so that people do not even discuss them. This is, in fact, what the word taboo means. As a consequence, to say that a Catholic taboo isn't a taboo anymore is the same as to say that one isn't a Catholic anymore; or, in the specific case, that it is not a taboo anymore to reflect in which way cats would be allowed to bark.
Now, let be clear on this: the German Episcopalian Bishops will never get their women deacon, unless they make a formal schism and become Episcopalians in name too, in which case they will not be deacons, either. What this conference allows them to do, is to continue to prostitute themselves to their Kirchensteuer-paying sugar daddys, asking them for continued support to the clergy's bank accounts against the German clergy's continued brown-nosing. Purest whoredom, you see, though it is fair to say every street whore is morally far less reprehensible than someone who, like Archbishop Zollitsch, tries to prostitute the sacraments to the interest of his own group.
Archbishop Robert Zollitsch is almost 75. One day, he will meet His Maker. Unless he repents, I would be terrified of dying with his hand of cards.
May is the Month of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
What better occasion than to make a resolution to start to pray the Rosary every day, than the month of May!
Among the heavenly investments I have mentioned in a past blog post, the Rosary is – after Mass attendance, of course – very probably the best. Padre Pio and countless other saints insisted on the Rosary. Praying the Rosary devoutly every day is a beautiful sign of predestination. I cannot imagine a better way to enrich your prayer life – nay, your life – than to pray the Rosary.
When I die, I want my last rosary to be not older than the day before. And I can die every day. Therefore…
If you should read this blog for years and take from it the habit of praying the Rosary, the benefit taken from this blog would be spectacular even if I have written rubbish for now almost three years and in more than 2,000 posts (which I do not think, at all; but I’m not you, either…).
May is the month to start praying the Rosary every day.
If you use the search function you will find several posts your truly has written on the Rosary. It is not a coincidence that my “Catholic Vademecum” page has at the top not one, but seven posts all dealing with the Rosary.
The best spot on this blog (right upper hand side) is devoted to a link to the Rosary. I almost never click to it now as I pray the Rosary with other apps, but it is the best spot on this blog because the most important message of this blog is – apart from the commentaries on the facts of the day – to pray the Rosary.
Make of the rosary your priority. If you do not have time, take time away from this blog and pray the Rosary every day. I do write a lot, but praying the Rosary devoutly every day is infinitely more important and will do more for your salvation than countless hours spent reading my posts.
When you click here, think every time if your time would not be better employed praying the Rosary, unless you have already done so.
Don’t listen to me. Listen first to the Blessed Virgin, St. Dominic, Blessed Alan de la Roche, Padre Pio and countless others.
Again: after the Mass, I can’t see what better favour you can do to yourselves, and to those you love, than praying and encouraging them to pray the Rosary.
Let me say it in three short phrases.
Pray the Rosary.
Pray the Rosary.
Pray the Rosary.
Google has always been good to me, and besides bringing me the most traffic among the search engines (obviously) is the search engine that gives most relevance to my site when you, well, google me.
Still, Google actively supports perversion, so it will have to go from my life at least as far as it is practicable.
Browsing around, it appears Duck Duck Go (yes, this is the name of the firm) is not compromised with an anti-Christian attitude at least for now. They are also very good in that they do not store any information from your browser, other than Google and many others.
I am not entirely satisfied, though, as the image search isn’t as practical as Google’s to me. Still, one can live with a couple of clicks more to get to the images he wants. The image above was found through the bing engine, which again is Microsoft, which again isn’t good.
Still, I would suggest to my reader that they consider giving it a try to see how they fare with it. I did, and again, whilst it does not work as well as Google for my purposes, I’d say it works well enough for most purposes of most people.
If any reader known of alternative search engines not compromised with the modern sodomadness and with which he is satisfied, I am grateful for a line explaining what they like in the search engine they are presenting.
I am not one of those “fight big Corporate” guys, but when I see that a position of absolute dominance is abused to fight against Christian values I say it is time to look for alternatives, and as I have already done for Boots (the perverted Chemist’s) , Google is now next on the line.
Courtesy of si si no no, a well-thought and richly documented portrait of the mind of two of the red hats who participated to the 2013 Conclave.
It is worth your while to read this little expose’ in its entirety; firstly because it is very instructive in itself, and secondly because the part concerning allowing divorced and remarried Catholics to “receive” communion might well come handy in future, as the trendy troops try a new assault on the Vatican, hoping to find the gates open.
Cardinals Lehmann and Kasper have a very simple suggestion to this:
1) an “examination of conscience” (which they will, no doubt, find immaculate, if unjustly slandered by the Church), and
2) “a meeting with a prudent priest-expert” (which,besides being stupid in itself, means that many priests aren’t prudent, or expert of what Communion is).
These two shouldn’t be allowed to be altar boys, let alone priests.
To think they are Cardinals.
I am not surprised anymore at what kind of nonsense gets published nowadays, but perhaps you still are.
One of the latest examples of dreamed-of Catholicism for the weak is this article published on the Catholic Herald.
Its author seems to think Catholicism was born ca. 1960, and Martin Luther King was one of the founders. The idea that true Catholicism would not cause wars is not only too stupid for words, but it also shows an utterly appalling ignorance of the very basis of Catholicism.
If the thinking of the author of this rubbish is right, Catholicism hasn’t been “true Catholicism” for more than nineteen centuries. But truly, the article doesn’t show the will to be heretical, but rather an appallingly distorted view of Christianity.
Let us proceed in order.
Most Crusades have been offensive conflicts: the Church takes the initiative to gather armies with this or that military purpose, whilst not being under attack herself. Be it Jerusalem, or Southern France (or, ahem, Constantinople) none of the attacked were even planning – let alone executing – a major military operation against Christian Europe. This goes to show the Church is very well not only in the business of the defensive wars, but in the business of the purely aggressive wars, too. Unless, of course, the author does not want to tell us that true Catholics should not, well, take the Cross and try to bring the Holy Land in Christian hands, or at least try to make pilgrimages in the Holy Land possible, because hey, this isn’t very Catholic…
The outlandish idea that “Christianity has a very strong streak of pacifism in it” (this isn’t a joke; it’s in the article, verbatim) can also only be born of profound ignorance of both Christianity and pacifism. What the confused author might have wanted to say is that Christianity tends (unless circumstances demand otherwise; see above) to be rather pacific, but it truly never entered anyone’s mind for almost twenty centuries that Christianity might be “pacifist” in any way, shape or form. The presence of a rather detailed “doctrine of war” should eliminate any doubt from the mind of any person accustomed to think; but again, this person must be accustomed to think.
The “pacifist Jesus” is also something that would have astonished every theologian before the age of Modernism. Jesus was – as it is clearly evident in the Gospel – constantly accompanied and protected by armed men, and being God he certainly did not have any physical need for their protection, much less their armed protection. Still, armed they permanently were. During the last supper, he even asks those who do not have any to sell their garments and purchase a sword, and I can’t imagine any least “pacifist” statement than this. He is, shortly thereafter, satisfied with the two swords present; which is undoubtedly more swords than you and I have around when we dine among friends; and this, without being God.
When I hear of Jesus “the pacifist”, I cannot avoid thinking of the parable of the King’s war. In the Knox version:
Or if a king is setting out to join battle with another king, does he not first sit down and deliberate, whether with his army of ten thousand he can meet the onset of one who has twenty thousand? If he cannot, then, while the other is still at a distance, he despatches envoys to ask for conditions of peace.
There cannot be a clearer mockery of pacifism than this. Jesus doesn’t say a word about the morality of the King’s intent per se. He merely points out that if the King is going to wage war, then please properly, and considering all the consequences. If this can’t be done – again: He doesn’t say the King shouldn’t wage war because war is wrong per se; the problem here is merely that the other chap is going to defeat the King with his bigger army – then it’s better to think lucidly beforehand and try to negotiate a good peace.
There is no condemnation of war whatsoever, and here war is chosen as an example after another example has just been presented (the building of the tower) and when countless other examples could have been chosen instead. Let me say it once again: to make his point – the necessity of reflecting on the consequences of taking up Christ’s cross – Jesus uses a comparison with war without attaching to His comparison any moral condemnation of it. What.more.does.one.want.
This isn’t Dalai Lama talk; this is Military Academy talk! This could have been Machiavelli or Sun Tzu, but it is Our Lord instead!
But no: in the XXI Century of widespread sloganeering and wet pacifism, suddenly a new Jesus emerges: one that doesn’t want the Crusades, but has a “strong streak of pacifism” instead. One can vividly picture this new fantasy Jesus, eating granola bars with his Disciples with a raised little finger, speaking of peace in a rather high-pitched tone. A fantasy Jesus after their liking, for sure.
It is very telling of our times that the biggest Catholic weekly in the UK serves his readers with such insipid, a-historical, unrealistic, utterly sugary fare.
Matthew Warren, the son of Rick Warren, has recently committed suicide shooting himself with an unregistered gun. For those of us who didn't know, Rick Warren is the author of the book The Purpose Driven Life, and the leader of a Protestant so-called mega church.
Matthew Warren apparently had a long history of severe depression, and it is not for yours truly – or anyone else, for that matter – to decide what has become of his immortal soul. We hope for him that he was not compos mentis when he took his life, and that a merciful God had mercy on him as we hope he will have mercy on us when our time comes. I invite all of you to sincerely pray for his soul, as I did. Depression is a horrible, horrible beast. Still, do not lull yourself into thinking the possibility of his damnation isn't a very real one.
What I would like to spend a word on today is something Matthew Warren apparently said to his father many years ago, after a particularly difficult time. It appears the then boy told his father he knew he was going to heaven anyway, so why not put an end to a life of misery and go there directly…
It seems to me that with just a few words the boy demolished the edifice of salvation through faith alone; an absurdity that a mentally ill boy can still perceive, but millions of sane adults apparently cannot.
Please remember this kind of Proddies don't “do” purgatory. To them, it's only up or down. The unavoidable consequence of this is exactly what the then boy has said: hey, I'll go to heaven anyway (because I have “accepted Jesus as my personal Lord and Saviour”, or so millions think….) and this heaven is supernatural joy inconceivable to the human mind. I am living now a life full of misery and ghosts, with the prospective of another seven or eight decades of this. Give me a pistol, and let's go to heaven….
Of course, some will reply that even the serious proponents of the sola fide heresy would not think quite so, and that a classic Calvinist would have seen in suicide – thinking out loud now, as I think Calvin was a fine thinker, at least as far as Proddies go – an eloquent sign of reprobation rather than of predestination.
But the fact is, I doubt there are many among those frequenting Rick Warren's mega church (or many other evangelical establishments, at the very least) who think in this way. To most of them, the matter must be very simple: Matthew Warren shot himself, and went to heaven. Which is, to all intents and purposes, the same as to say that Matthew Warren shot himself to heaven.
Therein lies, hidden beneath the usual wave of sentimentalism, the implicit suggestion of modern mega church evangelicalism to those faithful battling with depression and suicidal tendencies: a purpose driven bullet as the solution to their problems and the guaranteed ticket to eternal happiness. The young man shot himself! Praaise The Looord!
Hell and Satan play no role in all this; it's faith or no faith, personal saviour or no personal saviour, hell or heaven. One accepts The Lord As His Personal Saviour, and the way to the pistol is smoothly paved. I wonder how many have made their way to hell with a nonsense like this, and have used their “personal faith” as a hoped for “get out of jail” card for pretty much everything; bar the most atrocious deeds, for which mental insanity must come to the rescue, it being not really thinkable that one goes to hell through his faith in … faith alone.
In the tragic episode of Matthew Warren we see the absurdity of this bollocks of salvation through “accepting Jesus as one's Lord and Saviour”. An absurd thinking probably untenable for Protestant classic theology, but certainly widely spread among the modern “Billy Graham”, “born again”, “I found Jesus at 3:45 PM on the 13 February 2005” crowd.
Poor Matthew Warren had confusedly seen the absurdity of all this, though I very much doubt he had thought it to the end. His death (let me rephrase it: his suicide) should fill all of us with unspeakable dread at what the consequences of his action might be for his soul, and what might be in store for us if we did the same.
It goes without saying if Matthew Warren had been a properly instructed Catholic he would not have been able to even think that he is sure of heaven, and therefore a bullet is an acceptable solution. Whilst Satan can more easily wreak havoc in a fragile mind, the rigid responsibilities put by Catholicism on one's own works would have been a daily help for the poor man in his struggle, and the terrible warnings of sound Catholicism concerning the very probable fate of suicides would have greatly helped him to find a solution in faith and prayer, rather than in a pistol. As it is, the horrible prospect of the man willingly and lucidly putting a bullet in his head cannot be ruled out. Protestant thinking simply opens doors to Satan that a solid Catholic formation leaves firmly shut.
If you really want to live a purpose driven life, I suggest sound Catholicism.
Not an easy job for people at the Radio Vaticana. They have been asked to publish the Pope's homilies in their entirety, but apparently the Pope tends to ramble, and they try to give structure to his more or less disordered or spontaneous words so that something coherent comes out of it.
The problem with this is that “ordering” isn't really so different from “editing”, and as the world basically reads and reports what it finds in the English version of the Radio Vaticana reports the risk of an “editorially adjusted Pope” is very real.
Once again, I must see in this an instance of poor standards from the Pontiff. If he wants to ramble he should give instruction that his homilies are not published or filmed at all: the message remains restricted to those present, the Pope sends out those well-thought and well-structured information he wants to send out, there are no misunderstandings and clumsy attempts at interpretation of spontaneous thoughts, and everyone is happy.
If, on the other hand, he wants to send regular messages through the medium of the homily, he should do what every organised person always does: think and write beforehand, and stick to the programme.
What we have now is, once again, a man who seems not to realise that his words and actions have consequences, and who appears to think about closing down banks with the same careless levity with which he commits liturgical abuses.
Can you imagine Pope Benedict XVI talking as he pleases at mass, microphones switched on, and expand on his thoughts of the moment with the world press listening? Is this prudent, or statesmanlike?
Pope Francis is not the parish priest, though he may like to think he still is. For example, he can actually close down his bank. What he says in the matter should be given careful consideration beforehand by him first.
There are some interesting reflections on the stunningly beautiful Ars Orandi blog concerning the “reform of the reform”. In short, an outside blogger – fairly conservative liturgically, if very much V II – offered the suggestion a better Novus Ordo Mass is a very useful, possibly indispensable step towards the recovery of liturgical tradition, as the uneducated masses spoiled by the modern antics would not be able to properly “get” – and accept – the Traditional Mass without an intermediate and, so to speak, introductory step.
The blog author answered with the reflections that the “reform of the reform” has remained a limited phenomenon, proving itself unable to truly reform the liturgical life of the Church; that the parishes that have a conservative NO tend not to have a TLM; and that the slow but constant advance of the Traditionalist troops is fuelled by the latter, not the former.
As far as my anecdotal experience in concerned, I can only agree with the Ars Orandi blog: those who attend a reverent NO aren't, because of this, drawn to the Tridentine. Being educated to avoid the worst is not in itself an encouragement to yearn for the best.
I would make out of this a more general argument, as it was never my experience that encouraging people to do the wrong things properly will, ipso facto, motivate them to do the right things. Put in a slightly different way, a fan of Lady Gaga will not be introduced to Schubert by listening to Simon & Garfunkel. He or she will be introduced to Schubert by listening to… Schubert.
Consequently, I do not see any viable alternative in order to introduce the liturgically uneducated masses to the right stuff than introducing them to the right stuff. It might not be easy at the start, but this isn't bad at all, because it requires from the faithful that they make the choice to do things properly first. It is, in fact, a typical mistake of our times that everything should be made effortless or at least very easy. People must be told that there are choices to make. The idea that people need to be introduced by degree to everything because they are too lazy or too stupid to take responsibility for themselves is what gave us the horrible children's masses, and we have seen the results both on the children and on the understanding of liturgy.
People generally aren't stupid, and those who truly are can probably not be helped anyway, nor can idiocy be the inspiring liturgical criterion. The Faithful must be given the choice, and be plainly told the one is the Mass of the Sixty-Eighters and the other is the Mass of all generations before. Those who are able to think properly will be able to choose properly, and in time they will move other people to make the right choice; more and more so in fact, as the old Sixty-Eighters unavoidably start to fill the graves (or in their case, rather the urns).
Of course, ideally the Pope would announce a stepped but definitive return to the Traditional Mass and the abandonment of the Novus Ordo. God knows the present Pontiff is far from ideal – liturgically as well as in many other issues – so this is not going to happen either under Francis or – given the present Cardinals and those Pope Bergoglio will appoint – under his successor. Therefore, the best thing to do is to build on the limited strength that is there, insist on a vocal defence of Summorum Pontificum, and use the leverage we have to promote the best Mass we have.
The Traditional Latin Mass is the best. Jesus deserves the best. Let us not promote half ways as if they were an introduction to the best, I at least have lost hope things will work that way.
We don't need half ways. We need the right stuff.
I am informed a Catholic Cardinal has participated to an interfaith service… No, wait: if I read it correctly, the service in Boston war held in the Cathedral, so Cardinal O'Malley did not, strictly speaking, “participated” in it, but he hosted it.
I have read many stupid arguments in favour of interfaith services, but the idea that a bomb or terrorist attack would make such exercises less unjustified seems to me a new height of stupidity. One gets the impression there are people on this planet who wake up in the morning with such an hysterical need for “unity” or “solidarity” that in their mind God's rules do not find application anymore. “Sorry Jesus, we just had a bomb, so can you please forget that you are the Way, the Truth and the Life and take place in the pews like everyone else? How do you say? Well yes of course, you will have to endure infidels basically preaching from Your house, but come on, there has been a bomb, can't you be tolerant and inclusive for one day? What? That man? Yes, he is President Obama. Why is he speaking from the pulpit? Well he is, yeah, like, sort of… preaching, really…”.
The simple fact is, ” interfaith services” are either wrong or… wrong. This being the case, there can be no contingent circumstances that make them right; it would be like saying that it is good to be blasphemous to show our separated atheist brethren that we are inclusive of their concerns.
More in general, I truly cannot understand this obsessive need to pray together. What is this, the kindergarten? Don't people know that there are Christians, Jews, Muslims and many others? Don't they know Muslims are infidels? Have they forgotten what “infidel” means? Have they forgotten what “prayer” is?
If people want to gather to show they don't like bombers, fine. Make a day of it and meet on some street on a fine April day. But why every tragic event should become the excuse for more rubbish is beyond me. What I begin to think is that for an awful lot of people a fuzzy feeling of “togetherness” has become vastly more important than prayer; nay, it has become the real motivation for prayer, so that many people (starting from disgraceful Cardinals) cannot even see the problem in common prayers in which Jesus is just a flavour among many others.
The traders have taken over the temple, and are using it to sell emotional rubbish.
I am sure O'Malley voted for Bergoglio. No, truly, I am.