Do you remember all those Proddies who knew Catholicism only by hearsay, and wanted to tell you how Catholicism works? Those who told you about Papolatry, and would not want to grasp the true nature of Papal Infallibility?
I wonder how many of them are being cured.
It must be impossible for a Protestant interested in the faith not to notice what is happening: a general insurgence of orthodox Catholics against the dangers of a wicked Pope. True, the Proddie in question might say to himself that the majority of those who call themselves Catholics sides, for all they know and insofar as they bother to make a conscious choice, with Francis; but the shortest reflection on the situation on his own camp will also persuade him that the ignorant and superficial majority does not in the least stand for what a denomination believes, and if you want to know it you will always have to turn to the orthodox minority, to those who – wrong as they are, of course – really care.
The critic of Papolatry is, therefore, confronted with a new reality: a massive opposition to the Pope exactly among that minority of hardcore Catholics he knows reflect the true stand of Catholicism. He must know – if he thinks about it honestly and without prejudice – that it cannot be that they are straying from Catholicism; rather, he will realise that the Pope is; and they notice it, and say it out loud, and do so out of their care for the salvation of souls; and they do so – as they will discover, when they research it a bit – within and because of the purest, most beautiful Catholic teaching.
The mainstream, “cafeteria” Proddies may think that Francis is “changing the Church”; but the attentive minority will certainly know better, because they will observe mechanisms at work that they well recognise; and will realise that, when you look at things drily, what they always thought of the Catholic Church just isn't happening.
How many among the Proddies have the intellectual honesty to recognise it? Rather few, I am sure. How many among them will start to move in the right direction? Fewer still, no doubt. But every soul has infinite value, and it is just among those Proddies who, actually, deeply care that some of the most brilliant Catholic minds have come: the John Henry Newman, the Ronald Knox, and the G K Chesterton of the world.
It is consoling to me – and, hopefully, to some of you – to think that in the middle of this mess, some Protestants are starting to really think, and to slowly walk in the right direction; and that God in His Mercy is providing for some water lilies to grow and prosper in the sea of mud this papacy has – wickedly building on errors of the past, but certainly pushing the problem into a whole new dimension – created.
As we look in astonishment at the extent of the mess, and must witness the tidal wave of excrements under which Francis is submerging the Church, we must also realise that God turns everything in His own favour, and will use Francis' tsunami of excrements as the dung to further the grow of a new generation of Catholic plants.
It would have been, of course, better if all this had not happened, at least from an earthly perspective; but then, if we look at it soberly we must recognise that a mass rebellion at all levels of clergy and laity could not do anything else than attract a horrible punishment in some form or other. Francis might well be this punishment, or the first instalment thereof. But the same God who put wonderful seeds of faith in the middle of Auschwitz, and caused brilliant Protestant minds to see the light, and baffle Protestants to this day – and who knows how many the Chestertons and Newmans and Knoxes have converted, even after death – will, I am sure, use this test to show to some fine Christian minds the beauty of Catholicism. A beauty that becomes the more resplendent, the more a horrible Pope tries to betray it.
The Bishop of Rome has recently found the time to meet another bus load of Proddies, including the chap who prompted him to make the improvised, and in my judgment rather tipsy, “video selfie” for a Proddie gathering.
Francis seems to have time to meet all sorts of Prods.
But in the recent meeting with members of the FFI the presence of Father Manelli was clearly considered superfluous.
What humbleness. What charity. I am impressed.
Ah, the German Bishops. Always ready to fight against Catholicism. Clearly, they rank among Satan's most faithful allies.
You might remember the “survey” of some time ago; a survey which, if memory serves, was actually meant for priests, though the usual suspects encouraged their faithful to participate to the exercise and say what they find wrong in the Church's teaching, in a kind of orgy of democracy and populism.
Predictably, the results were that the astonishingly neglected – and arrogant their own part – German sheep either do not know important parts of the teaching, or consider it – wait for this – “heartless”, “unacceptable”, or the like.
You will, now, imagine these shameful but not unexpected findings would be the occasion for a loud mea culpa from the side of the shepherds, admitting that it is their most grievous fault that souls entrusted to their care may think that God is heartless, or, far more probably, are not even informed that Church rules concerning sexual morality are just not disposable, because they are from God. With which, actually, the discussion should come to an abrupt end.
And in fact, it being unthinkable that a Christian may deem God heartless and still call himself a Christian, the only explanation to such a brutal refusal of God's laws is that the sheep believe, and the shepherds allow them to believe, that these rules can and, indeed, must be changed.
God only will be able to look into the souls of the millions of confused non-Catholics who share such a thinking, and justly decide in every individual case when their guilt is worthy of hell and when the lack of proper teaching, or the bad example of their own shepherds, are bad enough to allow them to escape the ultimate punishment. But there can be no doubt in my mind that the bishops and priests themselves know perfectly well what the rules are and whence they come, and will have absolutely nowhere to hide when their day of reckoning comes.
A public condemnation of eternal Church rules as “heartless” – a condemnation clear enough, though thinly veiled behind the excuse of it being what the vox populi says – is something I had missed up to now, though this is probably merely due to my lack of attention. This bunch of idiots do not say “the people don't like and even harshly criticise the rules, so we must start a serious work of evangelisation because it's clear we have done everything wrong for decades”; no, they report to Rome what “the people” find “unacceptable”. They say: “Look, Francis: the sheep say the rules are heartless; therefore, they must be changed, or at least they must be “pastorally” raped until the sheep are halfway satisfied and keep paying the Kirchensteuer.
I expect this message to be sent with the usual subtle distinguos, and to be broadcast in a way that avoids danger for the bishops themselves. In the next months, methinks, we will hear these wolves reflect on how they can “more effectively” transmit Catholic teaching, whilst being “pastoral” regarding the grievances of the sheep. They find the teaching unacceptable, you see, so let's be “pastoral”. Still, the overall message will be clear enough, and this is how the German sheep will understand it: we, the good German pastors, are doing what we can to help you, dear sheep. Please, please keep paying the Kirchensteuer!
What a bunch of prostitutes in purple.
One of the clearest influences of Protestant thinking in northern Catholics is their exaggerated attention for the Scriptures. I think it depends from the fact that even when they are cradle Catholics, they grew up in an environment where Protestant relatives and neighbours threw verses at them like grenades, and they must have thought the weapon is a fearful one indeed.
Well, it isn't.
Proddies have been throwing such grenades at each other with remarkable zeal for several centuries now, and I do not think there have been many who thought the hand-picked verses of their opponents were better than those hand-picked by themselves. The procedure is also questionable in itself, then either the quotation is rather long or very often the context is lost, and as no one – not even a bible-verse-shooting Protestant – can put every Biblical quotation in its entire context by heart, the argument loses much in efficacy. The more so, when the citation becomes so short as to be thrown around at one's convenience, like the “do not judge” curiously so well mastered by those clearly worthy of the harshest judgment.
Scriptural quotations do not work, because the Bible does not have the Truth. The Church has.
Put in a different way, first I believe what the Church says, and then I believe where I find it in the Bible. As a result, no quote from the Bible can be taken authoritatively, unless it is clear that the quote is meant and interpreted in accordance to what the Church teaches; but if this is the case, then it is much better to make the point arguing from what the Church believes, than from what the Bible says.
This endless Bible-quoting also plays in the hands of the Proddies, because it reinforces them in their erroneous opinion that the Bible, not the Church, has the Truth. As a result, they will react to every barrage of biblical verses with another barrage of biblical verses, and the discussion will end absolutely nowhere as, again, abundantly demonstrated by the astonishing proliferation of Protestant sects.
On the contrary, every Protestant should be confronted with a paradigm shift (whether he accepts it is another cup of tea, of course) and be told in no uncertain term the Scriptures can only be the reflection of a Truth existing before them and outside of them. Therefore, the reflection is only correct insofar as it correctly transmits the Truth reflected, failing which the reflection will be in nothing more authentic than the one provided by those deforming mirrors you look at if you want to have a laugh.
I hear, here and there, that Catholics should have a better knowledge of Scriptures. Maybe so; but given the abysmal ignorance of our times, the risk of getting the meaning wrong or even tragically wrong (“do not judge” is my absolute favourite), and the sheer complexity of Catholic teaching I suggest the effort should be directed towards a better knowledge of the teaching itself. If you ask me, for most people and in most circumstances the rediscovery of old Catechisms and the reading of books of Catholic apologetics or theology is far more fruitful than hours spent in reading the Scriptures without adequate instruments for their proper understanding.
Granted, it will sound less impressive than having one or two dozen citations learned by heart and ready for use; but one will know he is right.
If you want to have incontrovertible evidence that post V II “ecumenism” is nothing else than a betrayal of Catholicism, look no further than at the reactions of German Lutherans to the rumours of an “ordinariate” for local, and hopefully converted Lutherans desirous to swim the Tiber.
The reaction of some of them was, as widely reported, of an initiative in contrast with the “ecumenical” work made by the Church in the past. They are, of course, perfectly right.
The initiative of actively caring for those Lutherans (hopefully) desirous to side with Truth is in absolute contrast with the mentality, widely spread in Germany, that we must look at Lutherans not as people believing in error and endangering their soul, but of people simply choosing an alternative path to Salvation and therefore to be left in peace; and truly, in a country where a Catholic Cardinal calls Luther “the common doctor” (this would be Lehmann, if memory serves) there is not much else to expect.
The decision to provide for German Ordinariates is, in fact, the opposite of Ecumenism as widely understood by the German Catholic clergy: no surprise our brothers and sisters in state of heresy begin to notice.
If the Ordinariates were to go on, though, one would have some serious worry about what kind of “Catholicism” the poor converts would be subjected to, as the priests able to really think and believe like Catholics seem to be in the minority. The task could be left to the well-equipped and perfectly trained Panzerdivisionen of the SSPX, of course, but my impression is Archbishop Mueller doesn’t like the way they have let him look like an amateur theologian with a penchant for heresy – a stingy remark, because deserved – and therefore no request for help is, I am very much afraid, going to reach Father Schmidberger.
This being Germany, one must consider the ever-present issue of the Kirchensteuer: it may well be that the Church in Germany, faced with the losses caused by the Kirchenaustritte, the exits from the Kirchensteuer-system, has decided that it is time to graze in foreign pastures a bit more assertively. But it really doesn’t make much sense, because if Salvation is in the cards anyway and everyone has his heart in the right place, it should be rather the same what one does, oder?
I am curious to see what the new converts will be taught about extra ecclesiam nulla salus. They might discover some of their new teachers are just as Protestant as they do not want to be anymore.
One of the strange types one (unwillingly) comes across on Twitter is the whiny, emasculated daisy who is all about “peace”. Whilst I dare to hope most of them are Proddies, there’s no denying our side also has her (unfair) share of them.
In their humbleness, these people know what Jesus does at any one time, and are the ones to tell you so in order for you to change your ways and become like… them.
So it came to pass that a noted politician responded to an unwelcome remark from the Prime Minister writing something on the lines of “now it’s war”. Our not very masculine hero reacted with expressions of shocked disgust at such belligerent language and, being very humble, added that “Jesus wept”. One would be curious to know whether the man was there, privy to such an extraordinary revelation, or was just an effeminate idiot in great need of growing a pair.
Still, the thinking was clear: I know when Jesus weeps, so you’ll have no choice but to agree with me in everything…
What passive-aggressive bitches.
I blame Protestantism.
Being born and bred in Italy, I have known the strange expressions used by some Protestants only later in life. One day, a young Canadian man asked me whether I had a “personal relationship with Christ”, and I must have looked at him in total disbelief. He proceeded, then, to explain Proddies have quite a buddy in Jesus. Great fun of course, and no “relationship” problems at all, considering the chap also proceeded to inform me he was “saved”, which caused another puzzled look before he explained to me he believes, therefore, well, he must be saved, must he not….
I wasn’t an observant Catholic in those long gone days, but even I would have answered, on demand, that when I die and not before I will know if I’m saved; and no, Jesus had never invited me to breakfast up to then.
These and other funny expressions (memorable the one of the two chaps talking with each other about when they had “met Jesus” during an English course in England, and you really start wondering whether they put something strange in the water…) are now rather familiar to these ears and do not cause a puzzled silence anymore, merely a mild amusement.
Still, I would like to spend two words about the radical consequences a different way of thinking about Christianity leads to.
I do not doubt many of these Proddies are very well-intentioned, and even less doubt the more zealous among them probably outdo most Catholics in their everyday practice of Christian values. Still, their thinking is potentially poisonous, and their attitude not only wrong, but very dangerous for their soul.
A “personal relationship” with Christ forcibly means the abandonment of all those traits generally not considered as part of a friendship: punishment, for once; fear, most certainly; awe and humility, in most cases. We feel comfortable with our friends because we see them at one level with us, we know they have no power to order and discipline us, and we are sure they would never decree we have called eternal torment on ourselves and this is therefore what we are going to get.
Predictably, the temptation will be massive, for all such “friends”, to end up seeing Jesus in the same way. At this point there will be no limit to the extent one’s relationship with Christ can be “personalised”, as very good friends will endure quite a lot in each other. At this point, also, Jesus will have become something scarily similar to the “imaginary friend” some lonely child are told to create for themselves: the pure fruit of an excited imagination, only they call it “Christianity” because of their imaginary relationship with… Jesus, their imaginary friend.
In this we see, I think I can safely say, the working of Satan, of whom it is rightly said he will be ready to let go a few if he has hopes of getting his claws on many more: the strange concept of the “personal relationship” with Christ will still allow some to live a saintly (if erroneous in their belief) life, but many more will be in great danger of damnation as a result of the “bespoke Christianity” they have tailored for themselves; this will in turn lead to be “friendly” towards every abomination; whether seen in other “saved” ones, or directly practiced.
Compare, please, this home-made chaos with the superior – because Divinely ordained – wisdom of the Church, providing her sheep with a set of rules no “friendship” can challenge, and another divinely ordained structure (the Church) to, inter alia, take care things stay that way.
Which does, of course, not mean you can’t relate to Jesus in a very personal way; merely that this “relationship” will not be anything “personal” in the Protestant sense, because it will be rigidly contained within the Catholic understanding of suchlike a “relationship”, in which the two “buddies” are substituted by the King , Judge and Sovereign Priest on one side and the subject, judged and faithful on the other.
I am rather scared (and scandalised) when I read of Catholics talking of Luther and other “reformers” as “men of God“. Men of Satan, more like. Their “novelties” and “reforms” cannot but be a door open to Satan to try to take away as many souls as he can; a process the more insidious when the relevant founder of the heresy led – apart from the heresy – an irreproachable life himself (not the case of Luther, for sure; Calvin more like).
The combined action of the early “reformers”‘, their descendants and the paw of the Devil then causes a situation where Christianity is spoken about in a way people grown up in Catholic countries cannot even recognise anymore.
And what about you? Are you, erm, “saved”?
1. Protestantism is the exaltation of the individual
2. Consequently, Protestantism makes of the individual the one who decides about what is Truth.
3. As a result, sooner or later Protestant communities start to separate themselves from traditional theological truths; the first dramatic example was contraception.
4. This had to happen at some point, because when personal opinion becomes the final authority of scripture interpretatio the temptation to interpret Christianity as it is convenient is unavoidable; of course, after
6. a convenient rationalisation, with this or that scripture passage taken as excuse, or convenient passepartout like “love”, “tolerance” and “inclusiveness” used to re-write each and every rule. This in the end leas to
7. a completely self-centred system of ethics which, in the end, is nothing else than atheism.
Voris explains in just a few minutes the slippery slope leading from bibliolatry to error to atheism.
Enjoy the video.
I might have said this, in one form or another, in the past; but as they say, repetita iuvant.
Tomorrow (but celebrated today in the UK) is the Feast of the Assumption. It is the principal feast of the principal victim (after Truth, and Church Unity) of Protestantism.
The Church had already always believed the truth of the Assumption, but it was only with the great Pope Pius XII that the Assumption of Mary was proclaimed as dogma. Before, almost everyone believed. Afterwards, everyone had to believe.
What we are requested to believe is the same that was believed by fifteen centuries of Church history before the heresies of Luther and co., as well as afterwards. The Church never changes Her theology, but her theology organically grows, like a tree that is always the same tree when young and slender or when old and mighty. Please tell this to your Lutheran acquaintances when the occasion arises. The Church doesn’t innovate Her theology.
Protestants miss all this. Most of all, they miss Mary.
A Catholic is not – thank God – so imbibed with Scriptural verses to be thrown around everytime it is helpful to underpin the one or other individual position (tot capita, tot sententiae might have been coined for Protestants, so fitting to them it is); but he knows that he has a Mother in Heaven. He feels the love, the vicinity, the help, the maternal consolation, the loving intercession of his heavenly Mother more than a Protestant ever will.
I pity the man who cannot direct at all times his eyes to heaven knowing that She is there, loving him all the time, suffering for him as a mother, helping him as she can as a mother.
I pity that man, because he has rejected Truth and Love and has closed himself to a great source of love, of consolation in difficult times, of joyous thanksgiving in good ones.
What is more immediately evident to us from the tenderest age, than Motherly Love? What is nearer, more keenly felt, more lovingly remembered? It has been said that by dying, most soldiers pronounce the affectionate word for “mother” they used as a child. I do not doubt it in the least. It truly tells something.
In His infinite Goodness, God has given each and everyone of us such a gift in much greater measure than every earthly mother could; He has given such a consolation and hope to those ( many in the past, less in modern times) who could never know the love of a biological mother; He has provided each and everyone of us with a source of unconditional motherly love, bigger than we could ever imagine.
Then Luther came, and so many were cut out if not from the love, certainly from the consolation.
Poor chaps. The Blessed Virgin loves them so much, and they miss most of the warmth, the love and the beauty. Oh, to have a Mother in Heaven, and not fully realise it!
Hail Mary, conceived without sin,
pray for us now and in the hour of our death.
I hope the acoustics was good in the Italian Monastery of… Bose, Italy. If the acoustics wasn’t, accommodation and catering must certainly have been at rather high level, as the place has been chosen (as already anticipated by me when talking about Little Britain) for the latest episode of that expensive exercise in useless waffling, busy-bodying and bad theology, but at the same time in jolly good company and first-class entertainment, called Anglican – Roman Catholic International Commission, in short: ARCIC.
On this particular occasion, the talks went on for ten days, concluding in time for the return of the happy troop before the Champions League final. One can only admire such logistical skills.
There is, of course, no way any “ecumenical dialogue” made in the wrong way may ever lead to anything approaching acceptable results. The inherent ridicule of the situation by which Catholics and Protestants try to find a way by which they might be reconciled without the Protestants becoming Catholics (a very tiring exercise, I suppose; no doubt helped by ten days of healthy doses of good food and fortifying wine) was on this occasion made even clearer by the fact that a lady took part as Anglican “bishopess”, and another lady from I-don’t-care-where as “canoness”. It is clear that female presence was considered indispensable for a more pleasant conversation at table, it being unthinkable that a “bishopess” and/or “canoness” may ever, ever be of any use in any talk based on real ecumenism.
Real ecumenism can never be an exercise by which Catholics and Protestant try to talk their differences away. Nor can it be limited to inconsequential waffle about the desire to get along together, as the Truth should, in a sane world, not have any desire to get along with the lie beside the one to – as long as possible – avoid armed confrontation. Least of all can ecumenism become an effort to let it appear that it be not so important – in everyday life and in the economy of salvation – to be a Catholic or a Proddie. This last error only confuses the Catholics, helps the Protestants to remain in the dark, and is of any use only to the merry ARCIC troop, and to the catering firm.
Real ecumenism is you-come-to-me -ism; it is the talk with the clear intention to help the prodigal son to go back to the father’s house, and no other; it is the unashamed statement that one side is right, the other wrong and one tries to find ways to help those on the wrong side to get to the right one. If this kind of ecumenism is not liked from the other side, though.
The newly established Ordinariates for converted Anglicans are a clear example of ecumenism, because they build bridges for those on the wrong side whilst always making clear where the Truth lies, and where the bridge leads.
My impression is that these merry gatherings have become one of those expensive, but not entirely unpleasant occasions to which the participant do not want to put an end, even when the absurdity of such meetings has been made once and for all obvious by the presence of the “bishopess” and/or “canoness”. I can’t wait for the first transsexual Anglican bishopette. the Anglicans might not be there yet, but given time I’m sure they’ll manage to “catch up with society” as they have done so often (erm: always, really) in the past. I can’t imagine that this would be seen as an obstacle to any future ARCIC: if you can swallow a bishopette, there’ s truly no boundary to what else you could live with.
No. As long as food and wine are going to be good enough, breaking up will be so very hard to do.
If you live in England, you may occasionally wonder when it was the last time that you heard a bishop say that Protestantism is a heresy.
You would also be very much embarrassed at having to answer to the question of when has your bishop last told that every effort to minimise major differences with the Protestants is like unleashing a wrecking ball against the edifice of the Catholic faith.
I also can’t remember any English bishop ever saying that the difference between Catholicism and protestant is huge, that no other religion was founded by Christ, and that Catholicism is the only way to salvation.
Finally, I do not recall ever knowing of an English Bishop posing Catholic Truth as the basis of every exercise in ecumenism, and that this truth will, like it or not, forcibly require sacrifices in matters of unity.
Obvious concepts, all of them. You just don’t hear them. Instead, you hear the usual convenient social(ist) waffle about social justice, or the even more populist bollocks about global warming.
This is why it is always good to listen to Michael Voris.
You’d have thought even Protestants would, at some point, open their eyes as to the utter madness of their own guides. But in fact, if you look at things more carefully, you easily discover that this simply can’t be.
What is Protestantism? In its essence, it is the desire to sit in front of a Bible and make one’s own theology. No more Only Church, no more immutable rules, no more unpleasant obligations. Granted, there are a lot of Protestant who are very sincere Christians, but the initial planning mistake is forcibly present in their own edifice, too.
Protestants will, then, basically decide what they want to believe and then look for a congregation more or less in line with what they have already decided is the Only Truth. Until, of course, they change their mind (because inspired by the Holy Spirit to a New And Better Truth, one assumes) and move somewhere else, or their own congregation changes the “policy” but they themselves don’t agree with that so their line with the Holy Ghost must be disturbed.
You want divorce? Hey presto, let us have one and who cares what Luther & Co. would have said of that. You want several wives? Easy, just find a suitable quotation in the Bible and found your own church on it and failing that, let us recur to …… the Holy Ghost inspiring us. You want priestesses? Same. You want lesbian priestesses? Ditto. The list is very long.
But what happens if you want…. rapture? Will you find people so clearly disturbed as to agree with you? Yes of course you will! Hey, in Protestant lala-land common sense is only an option, just make some calculation and come up with something you wanted to think in the first place! Isn’t it just what every other Protestant “church” is doing?
This is, you see, the perverse beauty of Protestantism. Even nutcases tired of living but clearly not allowed to think of suicide, frustrated losers dreaming of some “revenge” against the world considering them nuts and idiots, and people who simply enjoy scaring others and being scared themselves can find their own church. How wonderfully inclusive. The only think the rapture nutcases must do is to find a deranged (or clever and greedy) individual whom they can accept as a guide; then, they have everything: the “church”, the “pastor”, the infallible “prophecy” and the excitement whilst waiting for the great event to happen. Wouldn’t want to be one of their relatives, though.
The event will, obviously, not happen as predicted. Never, ever. Why is that? Simply because – as every Catholic knows – we know neither the day nor the hour. But this being simple logic based on a coherent, rational interpretation of Scripture it has the great defect of not saying to the nutcases what they want the Bible to say. No problem, let’s find (or found) a church.
But what happens when the event does not happen? Do you think they’ll open their eyes? Nonsense! If they had had eyes to see, they would have opened them long ago! What they will do is simply… continue to do what they have always done! A mistake in the calculation, say. Or Jesus having really come back in 1941 as foreseen, but no one having noticing it* (I think he was seen drinking a coffee, though). Failing everything you can even say that the Holy Ghost has given you extra time. The possibilities are endless…..
Therefore, the amused world is now informed that the rapture is going to happen not on the 21st of May, but on the 21st October.
Slight mistake in the calculation, apparently. Apologies. Regular millenarianism to be resumed shortly.
I can’t wait for the 21st october, I would almost say. But no, really, what will happen on that day is the same that has happened this time. Sorry mate, calculation had a slight glitch. Keep believing.
* That will be the Jehova’s witnesses, I believe.
Astonishingly, the Michael Voris video you see above has caused criticisms from, of all people, devout Catholics. This happens, I think, because – as so often – his words are taken emotionally, without even listening to what the man says.
Please watch the video above. Voris is not inviting anyone to any schism. He is not even inviting the faithful to throw out of the window mediocre, but still honestly Catholic priests.
What he is simply saying is that, if in your church things have gone so far that you realise that your allegedly Catholic priest is nothing more than a Pagan, you must draw the consequence and leave that parish. This point is so important that he managed to make the point repeatedly in a message only a handful of minutes long. I truly can’t see how this can be misunderstood without being either rather inattentive, or rather obtuse.
It is also astonishing that the reaction would focus on the simple truths Voris has the honesty to present, rather than on the scandalous fact that within the Catholic church, some very confused people would even think of abandoning themselves to the kind of feel-good pagan nonsense we have already seen in Protestant circles.
Michael Voris is spot on. The kind of Neo-pagan, environ-Mentalist so-called Catholicism we see here and there must be eradicated from the very roots, by encouraging sincere Catholics to understand when it is clear that their own priest is not a Catholic anymore.
Even if the vatican were as effective and courageous as, well, it isn’t, it would be impossible to prevent every insurgence of heretical thinking among the worst shepherds. But whilst some centuries ago the relative ignorance of the people in the pews made it more difficult to discern when the priest was becoming heretic, nowadays such a decision is easily possible for a much bigger number of people.
This without even considering that for around 98% of the history of Christianity, a priest devoting the homily to environmental issues on Good Friday, Easter Day or Divine Mercy Sunday (or call it dominica in albis if you are old-fashioned or if you are not a great fan of the Divine Mercy; I ain’t, either) would have been disposed of in a more or less environmentally friendly way in a very short time, without the need for any discussion.
It is time to call things as they are. The habit doesn’t make a heretic less heretic, nor a pagan less pagan.
It sometimes happens that I attend the 12:30 mass instead of the 11:00 Mass. What always strikes me on those occasions is, on entering the church, a strong smell of incense. The fact is, that the 10:00 Mass doesn’t have the massive use of incense of the solemn mass at 11:00; therefore, coming in after the end of the 11:00 mass you immediately notice the difference.
Every time that this happens I can’t avoid noticing what the Protestants (most of them, at least) miss not only from a theological point of view (because they are heretics) but from a more practical, eminently human one.
Catholicism is so complete, so wise, so beautifully constructed in all its details. The little gestures and smells and rituals that are so closely identified with Catholic tradition are a help to the faithful rather than a show of pomp or an ungodly fondness for rituals. At the same time, they connect him with his deeper nature rather than creating a separation between what he thinks and what he is.
When you get into a Catholic church, you are supposed to enter a different world. A world which in its isolation from the outside environment wants to be a prefiguration of the world to come. Walls will be as thick as affordable. Doors will isolate you from the outside as much as practicable. Once inside, you will notice the smell of incense and this will immediately – in an automatic, unconscious reflex similar to the one of Pavlov’s dogs – tell you on a more profound level than the intellectual one that you are now in a sacred place. You look for the stoop and again something happens that is unique to the church: the contact of your forehead with the cold holy water. Around you, the environment is also unique: the building is more or less ornate, generally as much as economic possibilities allow. This is different from everything you see outside and not only does remind you of Christianity at every turn and in every inch (the paintings, the painted glass, the statues, the stations of the cross, the pulpit, the sanctuary with the altar and the Tabernacle, and so on), but it literally leads you to a world you won’t find anywhere else.
It goes on. Silence – a typical trait of every church not defiled by post Vatican-II madness and postmodern ignorance and rudeness – is your almost constant companion. Even tourists go around exchanging, if at all, merely short whispers. This is very natural to them, as the silence is overwhelming and everything they see and smell around them tells them that….. they are now in another world. If the church is not immersed in its solemn silence, an organ might be playing and here again, the assault on your senses is overwhelming.
You see here how a properly made Catholic church embraces all of you at an emotional, elementary level. Sight (the decoration), smell (the incense), hearing (the music, or the silence), touch (the holy water) are involved in a unique way, a way immediately predisposing you to prayer and meditation.
This may seem unnecessary frill and unholy complication to a Protestant mind, but in reality only shows one of the typical traits of Catholic mentality: their connection with the entire being as opposed to the cold cerebral approach so typical of many Protestants. In turn, this natural desire to let all their senses participate to their devotion is – and I can say this with full, first-hand knowledge, having extensively lived in both worlds – so typical of the mediterranean culture, which without any doubt is much more in touch with their inner being than the Peoples of the colder Protestant regions. And one would be tempted to wonder whether it is their connection with their emotions that makes of southern Europeans “natural Catholics”, or whether they are so well-connected to their emotions because they have been raised, for countless generations, as Catholics. If you look at the Germans – a people who, by all their differences and cultural nuances, still are pretty much identifiable as a cultural homogeneous region – you can’t avoid noticing the differences in the most minute details (up to the way they walk, talk, move their facial muscles, laugh!) between the Catholic regions (the Rhineland and, most notably, Bavaria) and the traditionally Protestant regions in the North and East.
When I first went to Munich, I felt like in Italy. When I first went to Berlin, I felt as if half the people around me were thinking about suicide.
Tutto si tiene, Cavour used to say and as an Italian abroad you see the way everything is tied together. Catholicism talks to your senses, and involves them; it does so with the same unspoiled, unadulterated naturalness and relaxedness Northern European Peoples invariably notice in Southern European ones (and yes: Southern Europeans invariably notice the underlying stiffness, the subtle “woodenness” of their North European counterparts).
Southern Europeans do not spend time asking whether incense has a place in church. They know it has, and that there’s no reason to be cerebral about it. The mere posing of the question would seem extraordinary to them. They are like Catholicism, probably because Catholicism made them that way: naturally embracing the truth rather than letting their own little neuroses and ego-driven exercises having the best of themselves. They naturally embrace their entire being (not only their mind, but their body and feelings) and let them participate of whatever they do (ever noticed how often Southern Europeans touch each other? Try that in Mecklemburg-Vorpommern!). And they are, in general, more at peace with themselves, which is what creates that sense of naturalness foreigners seem to love so much of us Italians (and that Italians invariably never notice in themselves, until they start living among Northern Europeans).
You see, then, how authentic Catholicism helps to create more – hoping not to be offensive, but using an expression that I have often heard from foreigners – “authentic” people. People more in touch with their own nature, instead of constantly wondering what is wrong with it or even trying to change it.
Next time you smell the incense in your church, breathe it fully and let yourself immerse in the beautifully spiritual atmosphere it creates; let the surrounding walls with their tales of faith and hope embrace you with the loving embrace of Christ; let the cold impact of the holy water on your forehead remind you – on a physical level – that you are now in a very special place; let all your senses participate of your experience; leave behind you all the puritan rigidity and coldness that you have so often experienced in your Anglo-Saxon climate; accept what the wisdom of countless generations has naturally accepted as a natural way of worship – the splendour of the decoration, the sacredness of the incense, the beauty of the organ or the solemnity of the silence – and let your heart and your entire being feel that you are in a sacred place.
The Catholic enters his splendidly decorated church, and knows – without even thinking about it – that this is just right. The Protestant enters the very same church, and starts questioning why the money hasn’t been spent on social causes. The first is a whole person, the second a victim of his belaboring brain.
One can safely say that Terry Jones is, well, not a genius. One is at a loss to understand how a man can decide:
1) to announce that he is going to burn a Koran
2) to announce that he will wait for signals from the Holy Ghost about what to do;
3) to announce a very broad palette of events which he would consider being the word of the Holy Ghost not to do it;
4) when no one of the events occurs, to decide not to do it anyway;
I do understand that some of our erring Proddie brothers make a great deal of what they imagine the Holy Ghost is telling to them, but from the way Terry Jones acts the Holy Ghost would seem to be rather unstable; which leads us to the unavoidable conclusion that the unstable one is, well, Terry Jones himself.
The Terry Jones saga now has a new chapter written (er….. burnt?), as the man, probably on the look for some more attention or needing some money, decided that the Holy Ghost has evidently changed his mind once again and has organised a sort of trial of the Koran (these people complain about the Holy Inquisition, I am sure…) at the end of which they, well, decided to burn it.
Let me say what I think of this specific action:
1) It is perfectly within the right of Mr. Terry Jones, or of every Mr. Joe Average, to burn a Koran. Mr. Jones lives in the Land Of The Free (USA) instead of in the Land Of The Politically Correct Cowards (United Kingdom) and he therefore has all the rights to exercise his freedom as he thinks fit.
2) The idea of staging a “trial to the Koran” is very childish. It shows once again that the man is on the look for a publicity stunt, and that his followers are certainly not picked amongst the brightest minds of that great nation.
3) The idea of burning the Koran (instead of, say, pronouncing the Koran heretical, or blasphemous, or outright idiotic and leave it at that; it’s a book, for Heaven’s sake, and it’s not even a trial!) is further proof that the man will do whatever brings him some notoriety. I am still waiting for an explanation from him about why the Holy Ghost would change His mind so often on the matter, but perhaps I’m asking too much.
In conclusion, I think that we can safely say that the man shows all the worst traits of Protestantism and is, certainly – not because of the burning of the Koran in itself, mind; but because of the ridiculous “Holy Ghost circus” and “wannabe Inquisition” habits of his – not good publicity for Christianity.
Having said that, the man most certainly has a point.
Which will be the subject of the next blog post.
Short, interesting and as always very entertaining video from Father Corapi about the opportunity of trying to convert other Christians to Catholicism.
Besides the obvious wisdom of father Corapi’s words, there is an element I’d like to stress. The person implicitly accusing Fr Corapi of “wanting everybody to be Catholic” (and being “deadly serious” as he says that) was not a Presbyterian pastor, or a Protestant layman. This person, completely missing the grace imparted through the Eucharist and the Catholic sacramental life and totally oblivious of the role and function of the Church, was a Catholic priest.
The conversation clearly happened a couple of decades ago and it is reassuring to see that at the “wanting everyone to be a Catholic” moment the public understands the absurdity of the other priest’s position and happily laugh.
That Fr Corapi felt the necessity to instruct the other priest about the fact that “God doesn’t do useless things” (and we are talking here of Sacraments like the Eucharist and the Confession, not about a corkscrew or a safety-pin) really says it all about what was happening among the clergy of the Only Church.
I am rather confident that if would be, if not impossible, certainly much less probable to find a priest failing his vocation and his Catholicism in such a spectacular way today than it would have been some twenty years ago, particularly among younger priests. Still, it goes to show that the “education” and “intelligence” Father Corapi praises in his old interlocutor are not worth much if the faith is not there, or the intelligence has been used to pervert the teaching of the Church.
At the top of this page you will find a link called “The Quotable Catholic”, a collection of short and mostly easy to memorise phrases meant to be a handy Catholic armoury for yourself and your little, ahem, online confrontations. I re-read them regularly in order to let the wisdom of those great Catholics be slowly absorbed. Father Corapi (easily the most represented in this little collection) is there with a little gem I always found wonderful:
My grandmother, who had only an eighth grade education, knew more than many theologians because she knew the Truth.
One listens to the video and understands how right the man is.