Yes, folks, you heard it right. As Our Lord said, "He that hath ears to hear, let him hear" (Matthew 11:15/DRV). There it is. Catholics assembled as a coven of witches, gathered around the omphalos, or navel of the world, in a configuration of stones much like that the pagan Druids of ancient Britain built for Stonehenge. This same witches' omphalos has started to appear in Novus Ordo churches on the west coast, and perhaps elsewhere around the country. The stones number 13, which is the number of a full witch's coven.
Oh, come on now, Fr. Moderator, you say, where do you come up with these crazy things? I don't believe you. Well, this one I didn't have to try hard for. I didn't get it through my confidential sources in Rome. I didn't get it through my confidential sources in the SSPX or any other traditional organization. No, this picture comes directly from the front page of the official newspaper of one of the Novus Ordo Diocese of O.
Obviously, it is "approved" by the Novus Ordo bishop there, who is the publisher of the newspaper, the same Novus Ordo bishop who "approves" a pseudo-"indult" mass (a half "indult" / half Novus Ordo concoction). It's all the same to these Novus Ordo bishops. Do you see the pattern here, folks? Who cares about such "episcopal approvals" when the barbed tail sticks out from under the episcopal cassock?
Wicca, or white witchcraft, has pervaded this diocese, as it has pervaded many others. Charistmaticism, "green," earth worship, Gaia, Fatimism (reliance on "visions" over the Deposit of Faith), and so many other perversions of the faith are all associated with wicca in some form. But witchcraft is witchcraft. This isn't the Land of Oz, with a wicked witch of the West and a good witch of the North.
No, this is Satanism, dressed up to entice weak Catholics who support the New Order, but Satanism none the less. Remember the pope's own warning that Vatican II and its aftermath admitted the "smoke of Satan" to the very altars of the New Order? Associate with the unCatholic New Order only at peril of your own soul. Hold fast only to the Roman Catholic Mass, Sacraments, and Faith.
TRADITIO has gained a well-deserved reputation for aggressively exposing the perversions to which the Novus Ordo service has been put, is being put, and will in the future be put even more radically. The "Liturgical Revolution" of Vatican II is on autopilot now, as the Novus Ordo sectarians allow more and more corruption to occur and sit in their pews watching it, by their continued silence and money approving it. At Rome and elsewhere, plans are already under way to do away with the missal altogether and let each lay "presider" (for there will be no more presbyters) make up his own "liturgy." Koombayah!
How many "masses" has TRADITIO exposed now, complete with photographic documentation? The Elvis Mass, the Polka Mass, the Pontoon Mass, the Wicca Mass, the Coffee Mass, the Cookie Mass, the Candy Mass -- and now the "Camouflage Mass." The Novus Ordo presbyter in this photograph is wearing a "chasuble" made out of camouflage material.
Well, maybe that's what they do in a war zone, you say. No, that won't wash. One correspondent claims that this bizarre custom is used "so as not to offend the Mohammedans." I have seen emotionally-stirring photographs of priests from World War II. I have seen one of a priest, in full traditional vestments, celebrating Holy Mass on a barn with animals around. There were also American soldiers there, kneeling reverently in the dirt. But, spiritually, the soldiers in the photograph, to tell by enraptured expressions on their faces, are with the choirs of Angels adoring their God on that humble altar, even though they are only a few hundred metres from the battle. The scene reminds one of the Holy Cradle at Bethlehem, where the "dumb" animals recognized their God, while "smart" Herod and the Jewish leaders didn't.
Note, too, that the soldiers in this picture, not of World War II, but of the Iraqi Conflict, are receiving the Novus Ordo cookie, not while kneeling in the dirt as the WW2 soldiers did out of adoration before their Lord, but standing -- a presumptuous posture indicating equality with God. But, after all, it is only a Novus Ordo cookie. One can only feel sorry for these soldiers that they are not getting the true Spiritual Nourishment that they deserve. Would that the Traditional Latin Mass of the Roman Catholic Church were available to them, not the bastardized service of the New Order. "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do" (Luke 23:34/DRV).
Dear Fr. Moderator:
Are you aware that that new "indult" bishop of Campos, Brazil, is celebrating a Traditional Latin Mass in the United States? What is behind this?
Fr. Moderator Replies.
As has been covered before in these Commentaries, the Campos situation has turned into a scam since the death of Bp. Castro de Meyer, as cogently depicted in the eyewitness account by Prof. David White in The Mouth of the Lion. His traditional Society of St. John Vianney there, which had been staunchly traditional, more recently allowed itself to fall under the charade of an so-called Apostolic Administration. The new bishop is playing footsie with the Vatican, telling his priests and people that he is traditional, whereas he participates in Novus Ordo services at the cathedral.
Now, our correspondents tell us, there are those, such as certain elements of groups such as Una Voce, that are trying to bring this deception into the United States. Moreover, in addition to attempting to introduce Novus Ordo-friendly environment under the guise of the "indult," it appears that a consortium is trying to make money off the deal by conniving money out of unsuspecting "traditionalists." Already we have had the expensive mailings, even a promo magazine, pleading for money. Shockingly, these "entrepeneurs" end up having possession of over "slush funds" totalling millions of dollars extracted from these naive "traditionalists."
Anyone who thinks that the Traditional Catholic Mass, Sacraments, and Faith can survive under an "administration" by the Novus Ordo-committed New Vatican is simply denying reality. All I say is: look and the record. Has the "indult" worked? No. Has the Novus Ordo been obsoleted? No. Are things getting better? No. Has Protocol 1411 of 1999 effectively rescinded the "indult"? Yes. Are we much better off sticking with Pope St. Pius V and the right, nay the obligation, of the true Catholic and Apostolic Mass until the Vatican is righted? YES! Moreover, there is something more behind this Apostolic Administration crusade than meets the eye, as our correspondent information indicates above.
As has been clearly shown in the past, monies that go to these pie-in-the-sky "indult" projects, whether purported seminaries, historical villages, or whatever Towers of Babel, most often end up supporting the New Order or being converted to other purposes of which the donors have no knowledge. Traditional Catholics should be most wary of these Novus Ordo tricks and stay with their 100% Traditional Latin Mass, Sacraments, and Faith.
Part of the problem is that all too many traditional Catholics are easily misled into believing what they want to be the case rather than what is the case. They are highly susceptible to propaganda, particularly from the very popes and bishops who mislead them, rather than using their own critical faculties to analyze the reality of the situation.
What does it say when one "indult" group is under investigation by the civil authorities for mail fraud? What does it say when Campos is fully traditional under one bishop, then goes "indult," and within a few months experienced the beginnings of an internal schism? What does it say when millions of dollars are solicited for a particular purpose and then not spent on that purpose, with no financial accounting whatsoever rendered to the donors?
The "indult" has, in fact, turned out to be a fraud. The New Vatican admits the point. You can read it in the Apostolic Letter Ecclesia Dei that started the shenanigans. The "indult" is a tool that the New Vatican uses like a Black Widow to entice the unsuspecting fly into what looks like an attractive situation, only to inject the fly with poison and eat him alive. The metaphor is telling.
According to TRADITIO's correspondent reports from around the United States, many of these "indult" Masses are no longer even the 1962 Mass, let alone the more traditional form from before the Masonic changes of the mid 1950s, particularly since Protocol 1411 of 1999 took away the "exclusive" use of the traditional rite. These Masses incorporate all kinds of errors from the Novus Ordo, from the use of Novus Ordo-"consecrated" hosts to standing for communion. As the high priest said: "What further need have we of witnesses?"
Let's face it: the New Vatican has compiled a record of lying to traditional Catholics, and yet all too many of these do not say in return to the Vatican: "You have lied; you have broken trust with me; I cannot in honestly deal with you any further." Instead, they say: "Lie to me again. Cheat me again." Or, in the words of St. Matthew's Gospel (11:17/DRV): "Pipe to me, and I will dance."
Such people are childishly naive and ignore the sound advice of St. Paul: "When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child. But, when I became a man, I put away the things of a child" (1 Corinthians 13:11/DRV).
Let's grow up. We're not children any more. Let's be men and put away our childish naivete and deal with the crisis in the Church as it is. Let's stop playing childish games of "pretend."
Dear Fr. Moderator:
Concerning the horrible error, reported here previously, of the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of Christian Unity to permit Chaldean Catholics to attend the schismatic Assyrian rite, which does not contain the words of Consecration, a contention was made recently in a Novus Ordo periodical that "the magisterium of the Church" accepted its validity.
Fr. Moderator Replies.
First of all, let me correct something. The "magisterium" of the Church has accepted nothing. The magisterium of the Church is not any person, or any group of persons. It is a thing, indicated by the Latin neuter form. It is the teaching authority (a thing), not a teacher (a person). In Latin, the latter would be magister.
It is a common error of the papolators (those who erroneously ascribe semi-divine powers to the pope that he does not have) to confuse the person with the office. Vatican I determined that some 40 popes in the course of Church history had fallen into personal heresy. Certainly, heretical teaching cannot be part of the magisterium of the Church! No, the magisterium is the Universal and Historical teaching of the Church throughout 2000 years. It does not admit of novelty; it does not admit of error.
The papolators really need to review the dogma of Vatican I carefully, as this principle is clearly stated there. The papolators seem to think that if the pope sneezes, it is an infallible pronouncement! This attitude reeks of heresy and scandal. There is certainly nothing Catholic about it. It is, rather, a travesty of dogma that scandalizes the true Church.
Thank God the Tradition of the Church protects us from such nonsense. When the pope falls into personal error (and the Universal and Historical magisterium of the Church clearly teaches that he can), we know it. Can the pope contradict the Universal and Historical Magisterium? Of course not. Can he teach a new doctrine on the Holy Trinity? Of course not. Can he teach a new doctrine on the Catholic and Apostolic Mass? Of course not.
The teaching on the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist comes from the Fathers and Doctors of the Church. When they teach in unison, that is Catholic and Apostolic Tradition. It comes from popes and councils from the earliest times. Not even a pope can impose a "new" doctrine. If he attempts to do so, as, for example, John XXII tried to, he should be denounced in the strongest possible terms, as was John XXII, and his teaching is not to be obeyed, but rejected and considered null and void, not to say scandalous.
A report has come to TRADITIO that in an effort to appease the religious intolerance of other countries, American soldiers are being forced to leave their religion at home as they depart to fight for our liberties. The Rutherford Institute reports that American troops deployed to the Middle East have been ordered not to wear religious jewelry, sing hymns, or express their faith publicly in other ways.
This order is an unfortunate case of history repeating itself. As one reporter noted, "In the Gulf War a decade ago, the U.S. military went out of its way to stop soldiers from wearing religious symbols of faith or singing hymns, so as not to offend Muslims." I personally have spoken to U.S. military who have confirmed this story. Even in the U.S. military encampments, religious services could not be announced over the loudspeaker. Code words had to be used, like: "The billiards tournament will begin in Tent 3-A at 10:00."
I received a message from a lady whose son served in the Gulf War of 1991. She says that he had to carry a card on his person in Arabic, reading as follows:
I am an American citizen and do not speak Arabic. am in your country as a guest of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, His Majesty King Fahd Bin Abdul Al-Aziz Al-Saud. I am not familiar with your religion or social customs. If I have done anything of an offensive nature to you, your country, or Islam, I apologize. You may report this incident to the Consular Section of United States Embassy.
We often say when we engage in these military actions that we are helping to spread liberties around the world. Yet it seems that the government (whether Republican or Democratic) is all too eager to abridge in the name of "tolerance" the very rights that we are fighting for. Well, doesn't "tolerance" depend upon whose ox is being gored? And in this case the government is sticking it to its own citizens.
Dear Fr. Moderator:
As a veteran of the Vietnam War, the pope's statement to Novus Ordo military chaplains attending a New Vatican-organized course on humanitarian law sickened me no end. I served in the U.S. Marine Corps with many brave chaplains who loved the Church and loved their country. The pope has no business sending his Hollywood pacifism to the chaplains. In all fairness, did the pope send a message to the Mohammedans about their beheading of women and children and their tortures?
Fr. Moderator Replies.
When the pope speaks like this, he is speaking as "JP2", the private citizen, not in any official capacity. The pope has a right to his personal opinion, of course, as you do, but this pope, much more than his predecessors, has deliberately blurred the line between what is official (at least in the Novus Ordo sense) and what is merely personal opinion.
JP2 attempted to do the same thing on the question of capital punishment. His statement was so confusing that many Novus Ordo Catholics thought that the teaching of the Universal and Historical Magisterium of the Church had been changed (which, of course, it couldn't ever be) rather than that he had merely expressed a personal opinion about the practical application of the Church's teaching.
That is why popes of the past avoided publishing books and making private theological statements during their pontificate. The authority of such private statements are confusing to the faithful, all the more so in a world run by the communications media that we have now.
Certainly, the personal opinion of any pope, bishop, or clergyman is not binding on anyone, any more than the pope's attendance at a rock concert (as JP2 was improvident enough to do in the past) binds Catholics to have anything to do with that godlessness.
Dear Fr. Moderator:
I wonder if you could give me assistance on Matthew 18:15-22. It's divided into two major parts. The first concerns confronting a brother who is in some way offensive, and the method is to do so privately; then, if that fails, to do so in company of another; and, finally, if that fails to convince, to use the Church to prevail upon the offender. Failing that, the passage suggests that we regard the offender as a heathen or a publican. The second part of this Gospel concerns binding and loosing, and forgiving seven times seventy times.
So here's my question. The first part affords an offender three chances to "shape up or ship out." The second part (after establishing the principle of forgiving and loosing) tells us that Jesus commands we forgive without limit. So, is the teaching "three strikes, you're out" or forgive without limit?
Fr. Moderator Replies.
As in so many passages in Scripture, one has to be careful to distinguish between the external, or public, forum and the internal, or private, forum. The passages cited are a case in point.
In the external forum, justice is required, both to ensure a proper public morality and to sustain the common good. If we let every murderer off scot-free, what would happen to society? God is justice as well as mercy; Christ is not advocating lawlessness. Justice is most reflected in matters pertaining to the public forum. Yet, we must preserve equity (epikeia) in the process of public judgment, as evidenced by the three "preliminary hearings" of the passage.
When it comes, however, not so much to public morality, but to one man's relationship to another, forgiveness comes into play. Although the judge and jury may have to execute a heinous criminal to preserve public morality and the common good, an individual may forgive another individual without the public consequence. What Christ is speaking of in the second passage is avoiding vengeance, which is a personal matter, against another individual. "'Vengeance is mine,' saith the Lord.
Obviously, when Christ speaks of judging not, it is the internal forum that he is talking about. Man does not know the interior disposition of a person -- the reasons or circumstances of his acting as he did. He may have acted in ignorance or under some kind of compulsion. God judges the inner heart, not man.
Yet society must certainly judge in the public forum. Otherwise, we should disband all judges and juries and let criminals do their harm to society with impunity to destroy the public good. That is why Catholic moral theology has taught that capital punishment can be just -- some theologians say even necessary -- for the most serious crimes, in order to preserve the public good.
War is another example of the application of the principle of Christian justice. War is not necessarily wrong; it may be required in justice. Peace is not necessarily right; it could be an unjust peace. When the Crusaders warred against the Infidel in the First Crusade, called by Pope Urban and preached by St. Bernard, a Doctor of the Church, to recover free access to the shrines Holy Land and to free Christians who were enslaved by the Infidels, was that wrong? Or did it rather serve the ends of justice, which, after all, apply to countries as well as to individuals?
It is from this principle that the Catholic theology of the just war derives, based upon principles such as those expounded in the philosophy of Aristotle, St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas, and others. For further information, one could consult Aristotle's Nichomachean Ethics and St. Thomas Aquinas's Treatise on Law in the Summa Theologica.
Dear Fr. Moderator:
The horrifying action of the New Vatican in July 2001 regarding the validity of an Orthodox eucharistic prayer that does not contain the words of consecration has dramatic consequences that approach the level of heresy. What is going on here?
Fr. Moderator Replies.
This is just another one of those cases that forces us to regard the Novus Ordo as not Catholic and to await the day when the Church is sent a fully traditional pope, as Pope St. Pius V was sent "against all expectation."
In July 2001 the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of Christian Unity promulgated a notice concerning the admission to the Eucharist of Chaldean Catholics at the (schismatic) Assyrian rite. Chaldean Catholics were permitted to assist at an Orthodox liturgy which does not contain the words of consecration. This purported action of the Commission violated all the sacramental theology taught by the Magisterium, and specified so clearly by the Council of Trent.
According to a recent report, it seems that the promoters of that cause were not all motivated by sentiments of devotion, but rather saw their actions as the first assault on the Roman Canon and the beginning of a vast program of experimentation. St. Augustine holds: [Accedit verbum ad elementum et fit sacramentum] The word attaches to the element, and the Sacrament is confected. St. Thomas Aquinas holds: Tolle ergo verbum, panis est et vinum: adde verbum, et fiet sacramentum [Take away therefore the word: it is [only] bread and wine; add the word, and the Sacrament will be confected]. This is the teaching of the Universal and Historical Magisterium. No pope -- and certainly no bureaucratic "commission" -- can change it, any more than the Immaculate Conception can be changed.
This disappearance of Catholic sacramental theology from the Novus Ordo apparatus Church will undoubtedly permit the most asinine "liturgies" in the New Order. The New Vatican has already talked about every parish having its own "liturgy" -- or, rather, every home having its own "liturgy." Moreover, it will appear to support schism and heresy of the worst kind.
The report also mentions that an "indult" priest at the German FSSP seminary has had the temerity to defend this nonsense, demonstrating once again that "indult" sycophancy knows any bounds. Any priest that rejects St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas, and the Council of Trent all in one fell swoop has chosen to be Catholic no longer.
Of course, none of this is valid. All these people are doing is consuming cookies and grape juice, and no decent Catholic can possibly have anything to do with any New Order "mass," "sacraments," or "theology," East or West. To have any truck with these at all is simply to suborn sacrilege, heresy, and schism and to put "strange gods" before the Real God.
Dear Fr. Moderator:
I am aware that St. John gives us the only depiction of Jesus washing the feet of his Apostles. The confusion comes with Judas. Some say that Jesus washed Judas's feet, and others say that he didn't, as he knew his betrayer and had dispatched him. Any information or direction would be appreciated.
Fr. Moderator Replies.
The chronology of chapter 13 of St. John's Gospel indicates that the foot-washing took place before the identification of Judas as the traitor. As you may know, this passage is the source of the Mandatum, which gives the Thursday of Holy Week coming up its name in English: Maundy Thursday.
The Mandatum, or Commandment, is taken from the 34th verse of that chapter: Mandatum novum do vobis, ut diligamus invicem A new commandment I give unto you: That you love one another. This text is used for the Antiphon at the Foot-washing, which takes place after the stripping of the altar on that day. It is a singularly beautiful Antiphon, which is accompanied by the equally beautiful hymn for the foot-washing: Ubi Caritas et Amor.
If you have the good fortune of having the Holy Week rites celebrated anywhere around your area, even if you have to make some effort to get there, you should plan to be present at these most ancient and most beautiful rites of the Church. If you have done very little in the way of Lenten preparation, your attendance at the Holy Week rites can go a long way toward redeeming your Lenten obligation.
Although TRADITIO does not take a particular position on the conflict going on in Iraq at the present time, believing it to be a matter for secular authorities and the citizens of the United States and allied countries to determine, according to the general moral principles elaborated by St. Paul, St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas, and other Doctors of the Church, yet it is good to see that at least one traditional priest has stood up to the intrusion into politics of Novus Ordo bishops and even the pope -- presumably acting in their capacity as private citizens.
According to a March 9 press release, Fr. Gommar DePauw, who saw the devastation of Vatican II first-hand as a peritus and as a result left his professorship at the United States' major seminary in Baltimore to found the Catholic Traditionalist Movement (CTM) in 1964, "urged all Catholics of whatever persuasion, to disdainfully ignore all directives in this matter emanating from today's powers-that-be at the Vatican and America's Catholic bishops. In this, the priest added, they are inspired and sustained by the principles unequivocally proclaimed by Pope Pius XII and all Catholic bishops of the United States during World War II."
The press release mentions that traditional Roman Catholicism, as described by its opponents, represents one-third of the United States' 63,000,000 Catholics.
Dear Fr. Moderator:
The liberal media loves to Catholic bash. One of the choice bashing items that they use to demagogue the Church with is the issue of the Crusades. If disarming Iraq is just, then doesn't the liberal media need to shut-up about the Crusades? Maybe I am a poor student of history, but I see no essential difference. One could almost argue that the Crusades were even more necessary than any present action.
While we are making a big deal (and probably rightly so) about weapons of mass destruction, in truth, the relative power between our country and Iraq is staggering, whereas, in the Middle Ages, the playing field was much more level and the barbarous attitudes of many Mohammendans towards Christians was no less than that which it is right now. In fact, it may even have been worse back then. I would be interested in hearing your thoughts about this.
Fr. Moderator Replies.
September 11, 2001, was certainly not only the time that the Mohammedan (Islamic) "axis of evil" has attacked the West. The Mohammedans had attempted imperialistic and militaristic invasions of the West in at least three major campaigns previously: 711, the Moorish conquest of Spain; October 7, 1571, the Battle of Lepanto; July 1683, the battle for Vienna.
The role of the Catholic Church in the Holy Crusades is quite different. It was not imperialistic, but fought to maintain the right of Christians to safe pilgrimage to the Holy Land, which had been blocked by new Mohammedan rulers of the area. Moreover, the Crusaders were attempting to free Christians who had been enslaved by the Mohammedans.
At this very moment Christians are suffering the most abject atrocities at the hands of Mohammedan tyrants. The Islamic regime in the Sudan has long been pursuing a policy of enslavement and extermination of the Christians in that country. The situation in many other Mohammedan states is almost as bad.
Even in more moderate Mohammedan states such as Saudi Arabia, Christians are subject to severe restrictions. Recall that the Allied troops during the Gulf War -- fighting in part for the interests of Mohammedan nations - were forbidden to use any Christian symbols. Catholic chaplains could not display crosses either on their uniforms or on their quarters.
The Holy Crusades were inspired by the revulsion Christians felt at exactly the sort of "ethnic cleansing" now being perpetrated against Catholics in southern Sudan and by supreme indignation at the desecration of the Holy Sepulchre. At the same time, the Christian world being weakened by petty quarrels and divided by schism, Pope Blessed Urban II realized that a crusade was the only hope for Christendom. His call was answered enthusiastically the nobility of Europe. Later, St. Bernard of Clairvaux preached the Second Crusade (1133-1137). St. Francis personally accompanied the Fifth Crusade (1217-1219), inaugurated by Pope Innocent III, and attempted to convert the Mohammedan leader Sultan Malek-el-Kamil.
Little or no attention is paid to the historical situations that brought about the Crusades or to the reasons why so many Catholic knights gave up riches and comforts at home for danger and death in the desert. The fact that the Holy Land had been invaded and that Christian pilgrims, who had been going there peacefully for generations, were then being robbed and slaughtered receives scant attention. It is forgotten that had it not been for the Crusades, there is a high probability that Europe would be a patchwork of Mohammedanism instead of the center of Christianity.
But here is how Blessed Pope Urban II, when he called for the First Crusade at Clermont in 1095, described the outrages suffered by fellow Christians at the hands of the militant Mohammedans:
The [the Mohammedan Turks] have invaded the lands of those Christians and have depopulated them by the sword, pillage, and fire; they have led away a part of the captives into their own country, and a part they have destroyed by cruel tortures.... They circumcise the Christians, and the blood of the circumcision they either spread upon the altars or pour into the vases of the baptismal font.
When they wish to torture people by a base death, they perforate their navels, and dragging forth the extremity of the intestines, bind it to a stake; then with flogging they lead the victim around until the viscera having gushed forth, the victim falls prostrate upon the ground. Others they bind to a post and pierce with arrows. Others they compel to extend their necks and then, attacking them with naked swords, attempt to cut through the neck with a single blow. What shall I say of the abominable rape of the women? To speak of it is worse than to be silent.... On whom therefore is the labor of avenging these wrongs and of recovering the this territory incumbent, if not upon you?
Sounds like parts of the Mohammedan world have changed little since the 11th century! As historian Marian Horvath puts it: "For mediaeval man, the Crusade was an act of piety and love of God and neighbor. But it was also a means of defending their world, their culture, their religion, and their way of life. Then, as today, men fight for what is most dear to them. Then, as today, it is the right thing to do."
Well, wouldn't you just know it? Mel Gibson tries to portray the biblical account of the Passion and Death of Jesus Christ on film, and the very attempt has now become "anti-Semitic." The Bible is anti-Semitic. Traditional Catholic Mel Gibson, after the slash job in the New York Times Magazine, is anti-Semitic. Does anyone ever consider that these pro-Semites are anti-Christian? Oh, no, anti-Semitism is politically incorrect; anti-Christianity is encouraged. A March 12 Letter to the Editor of the New York Times by one Abraham Foxman, of the Jewish Anti-Defamation League, relates:
We are concerned that Mel Gibson's cinematic attempt to portray the suffering of Jesus and the crucifixion in his new film, The Passion, could call up a dangerous anti-Semitic canard that has for centuries been used to validate the persecution and wanton killing of Jews. The centuries-old charge of deicide against Jews, simply put, that "the Jews killed Christ," has been discredited by history and unequivocally rejected by the Roman Catholic Church in the 1965 Vatican proclamation, Nostra Aetate.
Yet the deicide charge against Jews still has staying power among fringe movements and even in some mainstream segments of the Catholic Church. A film graphically portraying the life of Christ, one that aims to lay the blame for the death of Christ "where it belongs" -- code words for deicide -- could turn back the clock on decades of interfaith work toward mutual respect and understanding, work that has been championed by Pope John Paul II and prominent Jewish and Catholic leaders.
Little surprise that Vatican II, which Pope Paul VI himself condemned as admitting the "smoke of Satan" around the altars of the Church, is being used by the politically-correct crowd to rewrite history. Sorry, Mr. Foxman, even Vatican II and JP II can't change history. No ecclesiastical pronouncement can change history, any more than it can change whether the earth revolves around the sun or vice versa. History is what it is. How you want to interpret that historical record is another matter, but who is to say that Mel Gibson's version, based upon eyewitness testimony, won't be more correct than your private opinion of 2000 years later?
The New York Times published a lengthy reply by one Robert Countess, which cuts to shreds Mr. Foxman's letter. No doubt he will be dubbed an anti-Semite for doing so. The sad thing, Mr. Foxman, is that the more you play games of political correctness, the more people aren't going to care about real anti-Semitism. You will have won only a Pyrrhic victory. As Dr. Alfred Lillienthal, himself a Jew, told the National Press Club over a decade ago: "You must remember that an anti-Semite used to be someone who hated Jews; now an anti-Semite is someone that Jews hate."
Space does not permit quoting Countess's entire letter, but here are some of the more salient passages:
The Gospels do NOT place the contemporaneous BLAME for the crucifixion of Jesus on every single distributed Jew in/around the year A.D. 29. Rather, they place the blame on the Jewish LEADERS -- the Abe Foxman types of A.D. 29, shall we say? -- who met together in the High Priest Caiaphas' palatial mansion, informally, since the evening was a Passover type of special sabbath. This Sanhedrin-ist meeting was NOT a full 71 member official meeting, yet was held in order to examine the arrested Jesus, an arrest apparently instigated by these Jewish Pharisees and Scribes and Lawyers and Sadducees who HATED Jesus and His teaching and His upsetting of their Temple "get-rich" money-changing scam and his upsetting physically and violently their "Wall Street-esque" euro-dollar-franc-mark-ruble tables in the Outer Court of the Temple precinct itself.
To be sure, these LEADERS had much at stake in their dominating the masses of illiterate and ignorant and nescient "Jews." Jesus was a religious and economic threat to their vested interests and Jesus HAD TO BE STOPPED. [Although Countess speaks in rhetorical language here, the contemporary Jewish historian Flavius Josephus confirms the venality of Caiaphas and his followers in the Sanhedrin.]
The general theology of Christianity holds that every human being was personally, though not contemporaneously, responsible for the death of Jesus the Christ since all are sinners [Romans 3:23]. Thus, Jews and Goyim [Gentiles] are responsible as sinners. And if Jesus died FOR sinners, THEN each and every Jew and Goy is called upon to repent and accept personally the efficacy of the Atonement for THEIR sins. There is, therefore, NO special guilt for Jews then or today. Both Jews and Gentiles stand on the same level ground at the foot of the Cross alike in both their guilt and their opportunity for salvation.
"Braveheart" [Mel Gibson] just might go down in the history books for bringing about a turn of events that Billy Graham just never could accomplish with his crusades.
March 21 is the 418th anniversary of the birth of Johann Sebastian Bach. I have heard that he was really a Catholic. Is that true?
Fr. Moderator Replies.
Now that history and scholarship is coming out of the Protestant cast that it has had for so long, we are beginning to see Catholicism in history in a new light. For example, it was only in the mid 20th century that historian Hilaire Belloc was able to purge Protestant prejudice from elements of English history. Moreover, a number of credible scholarly articles have appeared arguing that William Shakespeare was a closet Catholic, a recusant, and even considered entering the seminary at Douay across the channel. And so forth.
The superiority of Bach in the musical realm is really without question. Perhaps Arnold Schoenberg, the musicologist and composer of the early 20th century put it best:
There is no greater perfection in music than in Bach. No Beethoven or Haydn, not even a Mozart, who came closest to it, ever achieved such perfection. This perfection is one of idea, of basic conception, the natural consequence of the profundity of the idea.
Although the Brandenburg Concerti, the harpsichord concerti, the organ preludes and fugues are all without peer, it is not instrumental music, but sacred choral music that make up the majority of Bach's output. He did other things, like teach Latin at the cathedral school, but most of his life was spent composing for the Church.
But what Church? The exterior evidence would say the Lutheran Church. Did he fall into the Lutheran posts because that was the only employment available to him in his area of Germany? Remember that after the Protestant revolt, the principle was cuius regio, eius religio, loosely, "where you live determines your religion." If your prince was Protestant, you were Protestant.
Yet the most important piece that Bach ever wrote was not a Lutheran cantata, but a Roman Catholic Mass, the High Mass in B Minor. This was written on commission from Prince Augustus the Strong von Sachsen (Saxony), who had just converted to Catholicism to become eligible to be elected King of Poland.
The sublimity of the High Mass is unsurpassed in music. Beethoven's Ninth Symphony cannot touch it. Mozart's Requiem cannot touch it. It probes every crevice of the Roman Catholic Faith in the traditional Latin text and in the music.
Just as Shakespeare's Catholicity leaks through, so does Bach's. Is it mere happenstance that he set to music St. Bernard's hymn Salve, Caput Cruentatum and turned it into one of the most sublime Catholic meditations for Lent and Passiontide, O Sacred Head Surrounded?
Is it any wonder that Bach's organ music, based on Gregorian chant motifs, is heard in Catholic churches and chapels around the world, as well as monasteries and convents? Is it any wonder that the Catholic Church has accepted Bach as one of their own, in spite of the fact that he was externally employed for the Lutheran church?
Is it any wonder why it is a commonplace that "the angels, when they play for God, play Bach"?
A question TRADITIO frequently receives asks what authority Vatican II has and whether any Catholic is bound to it. The short answer is that according tot he popes, Vatican II has no dogmatic authority of its own and does not bind any Catholic.
In fact, it seems that the Holy Ghost may have intervened to make it easily possible any pope to wipe the Council entirely off the books, just as Pope Leo I rejected the Council of Ephesus (449), calling it a Robber's Council (Latrocinium), and just as Pope Pius VI rejected the Council of Pistoia (1794) as "injurious to the Church and to the Spirit of God which governs her" (Auctorem Fidei). For further information, see the TRADITIO Library of Files for FAQ8: What Is the Authority of Vatican II?
Pope John XXIII made it clear when he called Vatican II that it would not involve itself with dogma, only with non-dogmatic pastoral matters. Pope Paul VI made it clear when he promulgated the Vatican II documents that they were not dogmatic. In fact, Pope Paul VI began just three years later to reject the fruits of that Council, even associating it with the "smoke of Satan." He issued not one, but several, startling statements to that effect. There are even reports, including a statement from the Cardinal Primate of England, that Pope John XXIII considered the Council to have strayed from Catholicism and that his last words were "Stop the Council! Stop the Council!"
In fact, the only things from Vatican II that bind any Catholic are those dogmata quoted by Vatican II from previous councils, mostly the Dogmatic Council of Trent.
So, when those Novus Ordinarians tell you that you must "obey" Vatican II, you can tell them that you have the pope's word there is nothing about Vatican II that requires obedience. That in fact Pope Paul VI himself said that the Council introduced the "smoke of Satan" into the Church!
Dear Fr. Moderator:
The thought that the Novus Ordo Missae is invalid has struck a frightful chord within me. I had realized that abuses impossible to number exist in the Novus Ordo, but I am horrified by the thought that many Christian souls would be deprived of the true Eucharist by the errors of man.
Fr. Moderator Replies.
It is indeed a horrifying thought, but eminently believable. It is certainly true to say that many Catholics have been deprived of the Mass on many occasions at many times over the last two millennia. What about the thousands of Catholics in Japan for several centuries after the Jesuit missionaries were expelled? What about the whole country of England for three centuries after Henry VIII and Elizabeth I? What about 6,000,000 Catholics in the concentration camps of World War II? The Mass was not available in many places even in the United States, which was officially a missionary country until into the 20th century.
The mistake all too many people make is to regard the Church as always being like it was in the 1950s: fat and sassy. Maybe that was the problem. In fact, the 1950s were the aberrancy. For most of 2000 years, the Church was under persecution, whether by the Romans, the Goths, the Protestants, or whoever.
God's disposition was to allow man free will. That free will can be used for evil as well as good. From Genesis through the present day, we see how free will has at various times and places fostered heresy, blasphemy, and sacrilege, arising from the very men who governed the Church. Remember that it was the "legal" Church of His time that engineered Christ's crucifixion, with a little help from the Romans. But it was all perfectly "legal."
This is obviously a period of test for the Church, which we should welcome, not abhor. "For whom the Lord loveth he chastiseth: and he scourgeth every son whom he receiveth" (Hebrews 12:6/DRV). But like the Laodiceans of St. John's Apocalypse, we, once zealous, have grown lazy in our faith. We have taken it for granted. We have grown prideful in thinking that the Church is always going to pander to our convenience. That was not the attitude of 11,000,000 Roman martyrs. I wonder how many of them ever were able to attend a Mass? Maybe once in a blue moon in the catacombs or some other place of hiding. The same could be said about the English recusants. Yet they were willing to die for the Faith.
The fact that the true Faith would be persecuted and would be retained by only a remnant is perfectly in accord with Scripture. I recommend that this Lent you read the Books of the Maccabees in the Old Testament. For three centuries the Jews had been deprived of the holy sacrifice of the temple. The prophecy of Daniel had come true for them; it was the "abomination of desolation," with much "gnashing of teeth."
The Maccabees, a small band of those faithful to the Church -- whereas most of the Jews had adopted pagan ways (all this is beautifully described at the beginning of the First Book of Maccabees) -- carried the torch of the Faith and finally took possession of the Temple from the pagans and the pagan-imitating Jews, and restored the sacrifice. That is exactly what we need to do in our time, as the Sacrifice of Calvary disappears from once Catholic churches to be replaced by a Protestantized prayer meeting complete with snacks of cookies and grape juice.
Rather than trying to construct some kind of security blanket that the New Order must somehow be valid, when that New Order clearly, and by its own admission, defies every significant dogma and doctrine of the Church for 2000 years, is senseless. The question we all must ask ourselves is: what are we personally doing to ensure the continuance and eventual victory for the Roman Catholic Faith?
The history of the Church shows us that this is hard, not easy. Our Faith is meant to be a fight, to test us, as our mettle is tested not by ease, but by overcoming difficulties. By so doing, we show our love of God and His Church, not just on our lips like the Pharisees, but with our very actions. Only then can we say with St. Paul, "I have fought the good fight."
Dear Fr. Moderator:
I have recently started attending a Traditional Latin Mass and heard somebody say that the Latin for for you and for many must be used at the consecration of the wine, or the consecration is not valid. Where did the all come from, and is what I heard true?
Fr. Moderator Replies.
Here is the background. Although even express provisions of Vatican II's Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy substantially prohibited the use of the vulgar tongues in the Mass, a committee was set up, known as the International Committee on English in the Liturgy (ICEL), to provide "translations" into the vulgar tongues.
The ICEL, apparently deliberately, introduced into the "translation" a heresy, that of universal salvation, although the original Latin did not have it, by stating that the Christ's blood was shed for all men instead of for many. In 1985, for all men was changed to for all, apparently to substitute a politically-correct expression. The for all wording was was specifically condemned by the Council of Trent, as it leads to the proposition that a sinner, no matter how uncontrite, no matter how heinous, still achieves beatitude.
When many theologians questioned the validity of Masses using the erroneous vernacularized form, the Vatican and the ICEL were caught with their pants down. So, they contrived a phony justification, claiming that Aramaic, a vernacular used in the Holy Land at the time, did not distinguish between all and many. This was a big stretch, first of all, because it has never been proven that Christ used Aramaic. Especially at the Last Supper, He would be expected to use the sacred language of Hebrew, not the vulgar tongue of Aramaic. In 1970, an unofficial Novus Ordo publication tried falsely to justify the change in wording, but that same publication has not uttered a peep since Msgr. Gamber's scholarly rebuttal was published in 1993.
In any case, one of the most influential liturgical scholars at the time, a Msgr. Klaus Gamber, tore the Aramaic argument to shreds. He demonstrated that Latin, Greek, Hebrew, and -- yes -- even Aramaic have words for both all and many. The full scholarship is available in Msgr. Gamber's book, The Reform of the Roman Liturgy: Its Problems and Background in an Addendum entitled "For You and for All Is Wrong."
Does the use of the heretical form invalidate the Novus Ordo? The governing principle, which is published in front of the Missale Romanum derives from the dogmatic Council of Trent and Pope St. Pius V. As a matter of dogma, it is irreformable, that is, it can never be changed. No commission of the Vatican, or even the pope himself, can change such a matter of dogma, any more than he could rescind the dogma of the Immaculate Conception.
Defects may arise on the part of the form if anything is missing from what is required for the completeness of the words in the Consecration itself. Now the words of the Consecration, which are the form of this Sacrament, are: Hoc est enim Corpus meum and Hic est enim Calix Sanguinis mei, novi et aeterni testamenti: mysterium fidei: qui pro vobis et pro multis effundetur in remissionem peccatorum. If the priest were to shorten or change anything from the form of the Consecration of the Body and the Blood, and by the change of words the words did not mean the same thing, he would not confect the Sacrament.
To put it simply, the change of for many to for all is a change by which the words do not mean the same thing, words that were in fact specifically condemned by the Church. If that is true, according to Catholic dogma the Novus Ordo service is not a Mass, the bread is still bread (or a cookie in many places), and any "adoration" is idolatry against the First Commandment, as one is adoring mere bread rather than God Himself
Most interesting is that even the Novus Ordo ecclesiocrats are beginning to realize that they are really operating a breadline rather than distributing Holy Communion at a valid Mass. In November 1996, in a well-known mainline publication (Homiletic and Pastoral Review, November 1966, pp. 31-49) for Novus Ordo presbyters, Fr. Valdimir Kozina recalled the Vatican's declaration of June 4, 1979, to the National Conference of Catholic Bishops that Novus Ordo services in the United States were being celebrated with invalid matter and would have to be re-said, or stipends returned. The U.S. bishops suborned the sacrilege by ignoring the Vatican's declaration entirely. Fr. Kozina also proved in his article that Novus Ordo services in the United States at least are frequently invalid with these bracing words:
The Devil works for the total elimination of the Mass throughout the world. He employs all kinds of means, insofar as God permits, to get rid of the Mass. The Devil makes use of some consecrated ministers to debase the sacrifice of the Holy Mass in order to abolish it from the face of the earth all together.... I am inclined to believe that priests who -- in defiance of the Church's Traditional and her guideline dealing with important matter -- purposely use invalid bread are not only guilty of the sin of sacrilege but they lead the faithful into IDOLATRY.... I think it is happening in some of our [Novus Ordo] churches, perhaps every day.
What is even more interesting is that, just recently, one of the original nine members of the ICEL, Fr. Stephen Somerville, in a letter of September 7, 2002, turned "state's evidence" and condemned the work of his own committee, admitting that the committee had included "certainly thousands of mistranslations in the accumulated work of the ICEL." Further, he stated: "The Second Vatican Council was early commandeered and manipulated and infected by modernist, liberalist, and protestantizing persons and ideas." Of the Novus Ordo service he wrote: "Such a litany of defects suggests that many modern [Novus Ordo] Masses are sacrilegious and some could well be invalid."
Fr. Somerville has not quite come to grips with the horrible realization of the sacrilege, blasphemy, and scandal that he, the ICEL, and the post-conciliar Vatican committed in allowing the for all error to continue. Granting that what he says is true, the Novus Ordo service, in English and virtually ever other vulgar tongue in which it is said, is just that, a service, not a Mass, no better that a Mormon prayer meeting. (Although this particular invalidating error does not exist in the Latin text of the Novus Ordo Missae, others do. In any case, the Novus Ordo service is rarely ever said in Latin.)
Dear Fr. Moderator:
The pope gives "communion" to Protestant Tony Blair? Am I nuts? If we are to assume that the pope is capable of confecting the sacrament validly, shouldn't he know better than to give it to someone who does not believe in the Real Presence?
My guess is that this tells us one of two things. Either the Pope knows he is giving something that is not the Real Presence to an unprepared unbeliever, or he really does not care that much.
Fr. Moderator Replies.
Remember when that African presbyter gave Protestant heretic Bill Clinton the Novus Ordo communion cookie? Well, now, the pope is doing it!
Now word comes from the New Vatican that the pope with his own hand gave the Novus Ordo cookie to a heretic, the Anglican prime minister of Britain, when he attended the Novus Ordo service in the pope's private chapel on February 23, 2003, with his wife and their three eldest children, who are Novus Ordinarians. (Church Times of the United Kingdom)
This sacrilege was committed in cahoots with the New Vatican's Secretariat of State, which illegally granted a "special dispensation" on the false grounds that there is no Anglican church for Blair to attend in the Vatican. Even if such a circumstance would ever allow a heretic to receive the Novus Ordo cookie, the "special dispensation" was based on a lie, as there are three Anglican places of worship in the center of Rome.
Moreover, according to news reports, it appears that Blair publicly advocates abortion. He appears to be a proponent of the error of Indifferentism, equating the so-called Abrahamic faiths (Catholic, Jewish, Mohammedan). He has read the Mohammedan Koran several times in the last five years.
Naturally, the Anglican Protestants are slurping this up as the latest oecumenical give-away. Which heretic is next to receive the Novus Ordo cookie: the Dalai Lama?
It is becoming clearer and clearer that the current pope is not a defender of the Roman Catholic Faith by a long shot. Sometimes one has to wonder whether he even believes that Roman Catholic Faith any longer, when one reads these kind of unCatholic, even paganistic, sacrileges he involves himself in:
I originally thought that the "indult" was the answer for my longing for the Traditional Catholic Sacraments and even went to far as to contribute to its seminary. However, I have come to realize that the "indult" can be taken away at any time by the whim of a Novus Ordo bishop, just like the "indult" Mass I attended locally biweekly (heaven forbid we have a Mass here every Sunday!). After a few times of showing up for the "indult" Mass and having the priest decide that "he doesn't want to say a Traditional Mass today" is enough to make a person want to forget the whole "indult" thing altogether -- especially those poor souls who drove an hour or more, thinking they would have the true Mass!
I have gone to nearly every Traditional Latin Mass in a 300-km radius of my home and a few around the country when I travel. On the basis of those experiences, I know I am safest attending either an independent chapel or a Mass sponsored by one of the truly traditional organizations. They will never compromise and decide that maybe today they'll say the Novus Ordo!
There was one other thing that did not set well with me about the "indult." The "indult" priests are allowed their one Mass at the Novus Ordo parish where they reside, and after that it is no different from any other Novus Ordo parish, e.g., lay "ministers," communion in the hand, the whole ball of Novus Ordo wax. The Novus Ordo cannot be mixed with the Traditional Latin Mass, as Una Voce is ignorantly pushing for. To do so is to accept all the errors of Modernism, Conciliarism, and the rest.
From the beginning TRADITIO has been highly skeptical of the "indult." It looked to us like a red-herring to lure those traditional Catholics desperate for "approval" from the Novus Ordo apparatus away from traditional Catholicism by putting on an occasional "Latin" Mass. We warned for years that the New Vatican would eventually lower the boom (as, in all fairness, it had always said it would). Then Protocol 1411 of 1999 came, in which the "indult" societies were told in no uncertain terms that they would celebrate the Novus Ordo when asked -- or else!
Reports had all the while been coming into the National Registry of Traditional Latin Masses that many "indult" Masses were not the Mass of 1962, but rather a mixture of that Mass with Novus Ordo elements. The devious Novus Ordo apparatus had sucked these Catholics in under the banner of "approval" and then snapped the trap shut!
After this blatant confirmation that the New Vatican couldn't care less about the Traditional Latin Mass except as a play-toy in its political negotiations with traditional Catholics, we wonder how anyone could be so clueless as to fall prey to the latest incarnation of this deception: the Apostolic Administration. Campos, Brazil, succumbed to this tactic, and now the Society of St. John Vianney there is already breaking up because some members of the Society, including the new "traditional" bishop, have been playing footsie with the Novus Ordo. Now there are those, such as certain elements of Una Voce, that are trying to bring this deception into the United States and, of course, to trick money from traditional Catholics.
Now we hear word of a big Novus Ordo shivaree in which all the "indult" societies participated. In December 2002 the Fraternity of St. Peter, Institute of Christ the King, Society of St. Vincent Ferrer, Riaumont, Fontgombault, etc., participated at the concelebration of a Novus Ordo service with a Novus Ordo bishop in France, in the company of a representative from the "indult" Ecclesia Dei Commission. Are these "indult" societies really traditional any longer, regardless of what they might have thought at the beginning when they were duped into compromising with Novus Ordo apparatus?
And let us be sure to follow the money trail. That often tells the real story of where the truth lies. The Treasurer of the FSSP, in his recently Letter to Friends and Benefactors, indicates that about half of the FSSP houses give the totality of their collections to the Novus Ordo diocese to which they are subservient. This FSSP Treasurer thus confirms publicly that contributions to the FSSP end up in the hands of those who spend the best part of their energy in suppressing the Traditional Latin Mass, Sacraments, and Roman Catholic Faith.
One can hardly justify any longer giving any money to "indult" societies, which it is only going to be laundered to the Novus Ordo to spend on harassing traditional Catholics and the Roman Catholic Faith. One might as well send Saddam Hussein money thinking that he's going to set up a rest-home for Christian Crusaders!
Dear Fr. Moderator:
I attend two traditional sites. One priest states that if the United States goes to war with Iraq, this would be an unjust war according to the Catholic Church and her doctrines. The other parish priest states just the opposite view. Can you kindly tell me which is correct? What is the Catholic position on this? Who is right?
I would also like to note here that I found it offensive that the pope would attempt to dedicate Ash Wednesday, a day on which Catholics for centuries have begun their period of personal mortification for their individual salvation (which is the only way it can possibly be), to "pray and fast for world peace" -- another "one world" way to the collective salvation of the human race! It is a travesty, at the very least, to use Ash Wednesday to achieve a political goal!
Fr. Moderator Replies.
This is a matter for the civil authorities. There is no "Catholic position." Priests may have their own personal opinions, of course, as they are citizens just like anyone else, but they should be very careful not to give out their positions as if they were church doctrine. That would be quite wrong.
The earthly order is divided into two realms, the state (civil) and the Church (ecclesiastical). As in most things, the dividing line isn't always crystal clear, but must be inferred from principles and precedents. Certainly the state must be influenced by true principles of religion, just as the Church must give due deference to the state's proper sphere of authority. However, just as the state should not interfere with true religion, neither should the Church intrude into the state. History shows examples of both, which have led to great ruin.
The New Order sect is particularly infected with this evil of intruding into the state's sphere. In fact, the Novus Ordo bishops and even the pope seem to be so concerned with secular matters that they have allowed their true responsibility, that of governing the Church, to fall to ruin. Novus Ordo bishops' letters are rarely about anything religious, but ask them about a secular matter, and they're johnny-on-the-spot!
There are certainly theological discussions and principles about what constitutes a "just" war, from St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas, and others, but how to apply these principles to a specific case is always a matter of opinion and controversy, as it should be. For further information, see the TRADITIO Library of Files for the article "War" in How Do You Explain These Traditional Catholic Beliefs?
Different citizens may honestly come to different conclusions. There are few easy answers in this life. Struggling to weigh moral issues and make prudent decisions within the principles of the Faith is part of the life of the adult Christian.
It has taken over thirty years, as well as a scandal involving extortion, embezzlement, and perversion on the part of Novus Ordo ecclesiocrats in the highest ranks, but Catholics are now in large numbers deserting the New Order. Its falsity is now hard to deny, as it no longer has the four identifying marks of the true Church: one, holy, catholic, and apostolic.
Naturally, the true Roman Catholic Church continues, even if it be in the catacombs, as it were, just as Pope Pius XII predicted it would be. Our Lord never promised that His true Church would be large or wealthy. In fact, Scripture seems to indicate just the opposite and could well describe the situation of the traditional Catholic churches and chapels around the world where the light of the Faith still burns, even as the New Order attempts to quench it.
We may not know all of what Our Lord is planning in this period testing and chastisement of His Church, but we traditional Catholics at least make ourselves a part of His plans by our unity in His traditional Roman Catholic Faith, Sacraments, morals, Latin worship, and the Universal and Historical Magisterium of the Church. All of which the Novus Ordo rejects, as it does not believe in the traditional Faith, Sacraments, morals, Latin worship, or such a magisterium, but rather in an ever-changing, Modernistic, personality cult of one pope against another.
We traditional Catholics are united in all the important aspects of the Roman Catholic Faith, while the Novus Ordo is totally divided, with different "liturgies," different moral teachings, different sacraments, and different doctrine. It is hard to find two Novus Ordinarians who agree with one another on the essential things. As one writer put it, traditional Catholic groups are now like a number of individual islands, which are all united under the ocean on the same solid continent. The Novus Ordo, on the other hand, is like a Vesuvius, sprewing out death, and eventually covering over all its partisans with the burning ash of error and killing everything in its path, forcing it finally into an eternal oblivion.
The Boston Globe in a March 10, 2003, article reports that in just one year, attendance at the Novus Ordo service has fallen by 50,000, or 13.9%. Some parishes have experienced as much as a 20% decline in the one year. The RICA program to get new members for the Novus Ordo sect has fallen to its lowest level. Now only 15.5% there attend the Novus Ordo service, or fewer than one in six Novus Ordinarians. The cathedral's most populated service draws an unbelievably low 300 people. There are traditional Catholic parishes around the country and the world that draw more than that -- and this is one of the most heavily Catholic archdioceses in the United States.
When I hear how much these people are supposed to "love" the "new vernacular liturgy," I don't believe it. It appears that only one in six of these people "love" it enough even to bother to attend it with any regularly, not necessarily even weekly. The vernacular language, the pop music, the lay "ministers," the altar "girls," the new cookie in the hand -- none of this has captured Catholics with any depth. Just as St. Paul predicted, a few of them had itching ears for the novelty for a while, but now the novelty has worn off. The Novus Ordo simply puts its hands over its ears when its people now cry: "I want Latin back. I want those beautiful Latin hymns back. I want to kneel for Communion and receive it on the tongue again."
Even the liberalist sociologists have now come to admit that the Novus Ordo sect is in deep trouble, at the same time that the traditional Roman Catholic Church has experienced a steady growth of 1% per annum for more than a decade. Like compound interest, 1% per annum adds up to a lot of people over a decade, and because the growth is steady, it is built on a solid foundation, not a "craze."
David Yamane, a Notre Dame sociologist, said that the lack of attendance illustrates the serious concerns Catholics have about the Novus Ordo sect. "If people aren't attending Mass, then the raison d'etre of the church is in question," he said. "The central components of the faith -- particularly the Eucharist -- are only received in the context of Mass if you're able to make it to Mass." In fact, the Novus Ordo Church has no raison d'etre, except to quash the Roman Catholic Faith of a 2000-year Tradition. And now Catholics are feeling the loss of that Catholic and Apostolic Tradition and questioning whether the New Order is in fact Catholic at all. Magna veritas et praevalet Great is the truth, and it prevails (3 Esdras).
Dear Fr. Moderator:
A Novus Ordo sectarian sent me the following question, and I thought that you would have more insight than me on this matter. Why did Padre Pio and Mother Teresa not reject the New Order?
Fr. Moderator Replies.
Both of them did reject the New Order, Padre Pio totally, and Mother Teresa partially.
Padre Pio, the first priest-stigmatist in the history of the Church, and a mystic that no one seems to deny, once said a transitional Mass (a modified version even before the Novus Ordo) and became so upset that he broke into tears and said that he would never celebrate that blasphemy again. And he never did, always celebrating the Traditional Latin Mass until his death. Moreover, he received the personal blessing of Abp. Lefebvre, when the latter visited the monastery.
Mother Theresa did buck the New-Order current quite a bit. For example, several of her nuns, who always dressed in their blue habits, attended the Traditional Latin Mass that I celebrated at the hospital where they (and I) ministered. They didn't associate with the Novus Ordo presbyter there, but attended me on several sick calls to the wards. Being very quiet by nature and training, these nuns did not make a great noise about this, but by their actions (which is the more important thing), they showed where their true faith lay. I have heard similar reports from other areas.
Dear Fr. Moderator:
Addendum. Andrew writes us from Canada that the parliamentary situation may not be as dire (yet!) as described below. Bill C-250 is not a government-sponsored piece of legislation; it is what is known as a "private member's" bill. Private members' bills have almost no likelihood of enactment or application. They are outside of the government's agenda.
The Canadian Church is about to be sunk, and the officers on board (the bishops) seem to be totally unconcerned about what is going on. The Federal Government has read in second lecture Bill C-250 (after a third lecture without opposition, it becomes a law in> the country) without any opposition so far. Bill C-250 will consider certain verses of the Bible as heinous literature (verses against homosexuality or against the Jews). As a consequence all traditional Bibles will be banned and anybody in possession of one of those Bibles could be arrested.
If for some reason the enemy of God and of humans can't pass the third lecture of Bill C-250, it is the Supreme Court that will achieve the evil work. Saskatchewan Human Rights has won a case in court where the judge has condemned some verses of the Bible (against homosexuality). The case is now in appeal and is expected to go all the way to Supreme Court.
The Supreme Court of Canada, in December 2002, has decided to force the parents (Catholics, Protestants, Sikhs, Muslims, and Hindus) to accept that their children in kindergarten and first grade use schoolbooks promoting homosexuality. The parents were arguing that their freedom of religion should be respected and the books taken away from their children since they believe homosexuality is a grievous sin.
Fr. Moderator Replies.
Nazi Germany perhaps. Certainly Communist Russia. But Canada? Well, it turns out that the liberalists are far more powerful in Canada than in the United States. And the Canadian Novus Ordo bishops are right up there with the worst of them. They're probably supporting the bill because they have apostatized from the Catholic Faith and wish to substitute for it the Counterfeit Church of the One World Order.
People keep asking me what they can do to help. Well, first of all, don't count on any Novus Ordo "bishops" to support your cause. Don't waste time writing the pope. Rather, you are the leaders in the secular order, not the Church. It is up to you, as laypeople, to insist with your representatives that Christian morality be preserved. Make it tough for your representatives if they go against that morality. This is what the liberalists do. For the most part, the conservatives are wimps, letting the liberalists run all over them.
12,000,000 Christian martyrs said No! to the powerful Roman government and ended up turning the Roman government into the Roman Catholic Church. Catholics of our day have no one to blame but themselves if through their inactivity and complaisance, they let themselves be ruled by godless tyrants. Here in the United States, Patrick Henry stirred the colonies against Britain with his "Give me liberty, or give me death." You Canadian colonies could take something from his book before you lose your liberty to a totalitarian state.
Dear Fr. Moderator:
Here in the City of C., the service at the local Novus Ordo church was not the Polka "mass," the Elvis "mass," the Boat "mass," the Gay "mass," or the Coffee "mass," but -- the Girl Scout "Mass"! All the servers -- correction, servettes -- were girls, and instead of a sermon there was a medal distribution. The presbyter requested that we all hold hands during the Pater Noster. Oooh, aren't we oecumaniacal! (I should point out that I was not at this "mass" to worship, but simply to observe.)
Fr. Moderator Replies.
As I've said before, anyone who thinks that the Novus Ordo service is a valid Mass must have been abducted by aliens and returned with a brain transplant! One lady came up to me after Mass last Sunday and said that she had gone to a Novus Ordo parish to receive ashes on Ash Wednesday and complained that it had been given by a layperson with the wrong words.
I could perhaps understand the ignorance of the Protestantized layperson, but what was this woman's excuse? She couldn't claim ignorance; she knows better. The Novus Ordo is a virulent spiritual disease. One shouldn't expose himself to it any more than he would to the bubonic plague!
Dear Fr. Moderator:
What is the difference between a sermon and a homily? A liberalist presbyter says that in "the old, archaic days when the faithful were suffocating under the pressure of clericalism," the celebrant gave a sermon, not a homily. He said that this meant the people couldn't read or understand scripture.
Fr. Moderator Replies.
This a good example of what "dumber and dumber" people are being turned out by the New Order "seminaries." Apparently, they've become so involved in certain forms of "sex education" that they don't have time to obey the popes and study their Latin and Greek.
The Latin sermo and the Greek homilia mean exactly the same thing, a familiar talk. When the Novus Ordo sectarians wanted to dump on Latin and change everything to the unfamiliar to confuse the Catholic faithful, they simply shifted to Greek, which neither they nor their congregations knew. You see the same thing still going on with Eucharist replacing Communion, liturgy replacing Mass, presbyter replacing priest, etc.
As pre-announced in an earlier TRADITIO Commentary, an article has appeared in a prominent newspaper (I'm not going to mention the name, as I don't want to give it any publicity). This was apparently the newspaper mentioned by Gibson in his O'Reilly Factor interview, covered earlier in these TRADITIO Commentaries, in which Gibson complained that his family's privacy was intruded upon in an effort to "get" him and block his picture from portraying literally and graphically the life of Christ as presented in the Gospels.
The article turned out to be a piece characterized by bigotry, innuendo, and outright error that is an injustice to traditional Catholics, as well as the good reputation of Mel Gibson and his father Hutton, who was one of the early leaders in the Traditional Catholic Movement in Australia. The writer was, by own admission in an interview, out to sensationalize, not to present a balanced factual presentation. Moreover, the writer revealed in the article that he was a member of the Novus Ordo sect.
There was an excellent, factual article written on the Traditional Catholic Movement written by John Barnes of the Wall Street Journal (August 25, 2000). I refer anyone to that presentation for a true picture of what is really going on in the movement, which is, by and large, composed of decent, hard-headed, religious people, whose doctrine and practice is based in Roman Catholicism, not the Great Facade of the Counterfeit New Order Church.
In any case, Mel Gibson comes off as a true gentleman. His interviews about the film have been most measured, his demeanor has been humble for so great a star, and so his detractors come off as minnows in the wake of a great whale who has control of the sea. If you want to send your fellow traditional Catholic a note of encouragement, his mailing address is Mel Gibson, 8942 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, CA 90211.
TRADITIO's prediction: The Passion will be a blockbuster, and people will be speaking Latin in the streets afterward!
This is truly an exciting time for traditional Catholicism. And Providence seems to be using actor Mel Gibson as the catalyst. Mel is a gutsy guy, who makes no bones about his rejection of Vatican II. As his film continues shooting, it seems that more of the crazies are coming out. He knew that this would happen, and he is strong enough to persevere in what he thinks is a project touched by the divine.
Gibson has chosen not to "soften" the message of the last hours of Christ, but to portray them as they are described by two eyewitnesses (Sts. John and Matthew). This apparently doesn't sit well with Jewish authorities now any more than it did in Our Lord's time, as Gibson's literal portrayal of the last hours of Christ will not reflect well on the Jewish authorities of the time. (We are not talking about Jews as a group or anti-Semitism, as all the original Christians were Jews.) For that matter, the Romans may not come out well either. We shall see.
Reuters News Agency reports that one Rabbi Marvin Hier expressed public concern on March 7 because "Gibson is a traditional Catholic opposed to the reforms of Vatican II" and that the film's purpose is "to undo the changes made by Vatican II," a statement that Gibson has never made. So the anti-Catholic lying and deceptions begin.
There are also reports that a stringer for the New York Times, with an animus against traditional Catholicism, is trying to sensationalize the views of Gibson's father, Hutton Gibson, an early leader in the Traditional Catholic Movement in Australia. Again, we shall see.
What this shows -- in spades -- is that the traditional Roman Catholic Faith is a powerful force. As in Our Lord's own time, we have ecclesiastical leaders, like the Sanhedrin, beginning to connive, and snipers, like Barabbas, sharpening their swords.
Moral of the Story. It's okay to be a Vatican II Novus Ordo oecumeniac, a politically-correct liberalist, or a New Order sectarian, but God help you if you are a true Roman Catholic. Well, for whatever his faults may be, Mel Gibson is one gutsy traditional Roman Catholic. May his courage and faith not waver in the test.
Dear Fr. Moderator:
Many have written about their personal view of the so-called "reunion" of Campos with the Vatican. I would like to comment as well from my personal perspective, being from a Byzantine Catholic family. I have personally seen the downfall of a thoroughly traditional Church, the Slovak Catholic Church, since its re-association with the post-conciliar Vatican apparatus. What is more alarming, this Church (and other Eastern Catholic Churches for that matter) are perhaps even more independent from those in the Vatican who have desired her destruction by a false "reintegration" with Eastern Orthodoxy. The Byzantine Catholic Church of Slovakia is slowly being destroyed from within under the auspices of the post-conciliar Vatican.
It was not long ago (around 1990) that this Church, like Campos, was in state of optimism. Although persecuted by the Communist party for over 40 years, it produced abundant fruit giving many martyrs (known and unknown) to Holy Church. The only positive artifact of the Communist regime was that it shielded many (Roman and Byzantine Catholics) in Eastern Europe from the evil changes succeeding Vatican II. Many priests simply thought that the changes announced by the Vatican were falsified by the Communist Party. Nevertheless the future seemed bright for the Greek Catholics in 1990. Their Church was freed from the Communist yoke, and many church buildings which had been stolen by the dissident schismatic groups with the help of the Communist Party were being returned.
What happened? The visit of the Slavic John Paul II to Czechoslovakia in 1990, the encyclical Ut Unum Sint, Balamand, and the influence of the Novus Ordo have and continue to be the death blow to the Slovak Catholic Church. The "Novus Ordo-ization" of the Byzantine Church in Slovakia (and to some extent in the Ukraine) has begun. Even though the Novus Ordo is so foreign to the Catholic mind, especially to the Eastern mind, we today have many places where the Divine Liturgy is said versus populum in the vernacular on a table. These changes were introduced slowly over the last 10 years under the lie that we were returning to our more traditional "Orthodox" roots.
How absurd! What really destroyed our raison d'etre was Balamand. No longer was it necessary to be Catholic. Did not John Paul II say that the Church breathed with two lungs, one Roman Catholic and the other Eastern Orthodox? This false and heretical notion of the Church did severe damage to the idea of the salvific character of the True Church. On the practical level, why belong to the "rigorist" Catholic Church, which doesn't allow divorce, when you could join the equally "true" Orthodox communion, which has no problem with divorce or contraception? The final nail in the Slovak Greek Catholic coffin was the 1997 change in the words of institution from "for you and for many" to "you and for all," all under the auspices and approval of the Vatican -- and leading to the putative invalidity of such Eastern rites.
This is what awaits Campos. Has the Vatican apparatus improved? No, it has only gotten worse. Archbishop Lefebvre said this a few months before Assisi I in 1986: "I would much prefer Providence to be showing us the Vatican returning to Tradition, but instead we see the Vatican plunging into darkness and error." And this was back in 1986 before the repeat blasphemy of Assisi II, before the blasphemy of Balamand, before the recent worldwide abuse scandals in the Novus Ordo apparatus, and the list goes on and on. No, Campos has been given a little traditional side altar in the Modernist Temple with a Slovak table right beside it.
Dear Fr. Moderator:
I wanted to let you know right away the results from the board election at St. X's church in [location suppressed]. As you recall, there had been an effort by certain indultarians to take over the church and hand it over to the Novus Ordo bishop. This, in spite of the fact that the church has had a stable independent traditional Catholic pastor and congregation for many years.
I am overjoyed to say that the complete slate that wants the church to remain independent was elected! Many prayers were answered in this election, and I think things will even improve now.
Fr. Moderator Replies.
That is wonderful to hear. As I have warned on TRADITIO before, the Novus Ordo dioceses and even certain traditional organizations -- for shame! -- have a history of preying on well-established independent churches and chapels to take them over, often by deception and ruse. After all, it's a lot easier to steal someone else's work, property, and money than it is to sweat in the vineyard to build one's own harvest. For those independent churches and chapels out there, be cautious and vigilant because the lion may be out there, circling, about to devour. Verbum sapienti satis est.
Dear Fr. Moderator:
I was having a conversation with a Protestant, and she was wondering about the biblical basis for the Catholic belief that Mary was born of an Immaculate Conception and remained perpetually a virgin. She was wondering what biblical scripture there is to support this. I quoted a passage about Mary being told by the angel Gabriel that she was "full of grace," but I was just curious what is the usual scripture that supports Mary's perpetual virginity and immaculate conception.
Fr. Moderator Replies.
First of all, when you are confronted by a question like this, don't jump to accept the questioner's own erroneous preconceptions, but hasten to correct those erroneous preconceptions. Your first question should be: What makes you think that it has to be in the Bible?
The Bible itself teaches that there are two sources of our Faith: the Bible, yes, but equally (if not more), Tradition, the Apostolic teachings that were not reduced to writing originally. There is nothing in the Bible that contradicts the Catholic and Apostolic teaching on the perpetual virginity and immaculate conception. The early Church Fathers talk of this, and they are the most authoritative sources of Tradition. Both the East and the West clearly believed in these teachings from the early Church.
Tell your friend that the Bible is not a theology textbook, with answers to every possible question under neatly numbered articles. Rather, it is an anthology of many different forms of writings and authors, which must be taken together, and in conjunction with Tradition, for an appropriate understanding of any issue.
The Protestant won't find the word Trinity mentioned in the Bible either, yet all major Protestant denominations accept that doctrine.
The word Lent that we use in English-speaking countries to mark the penitential season of forty days before Easter is from an Anglo-Saxon word meaning spring. However, the official term used by the Church is Quadragesima, from the Latin word for forty. The question arises why the number of days from Ash Wednesday to Easter is not exactly forty. One simple explanation is that if one does not count the Sundays, which are not days of fast, the number of days does equal forty.
To help you make a profitable forty-day period of prayer, penance, and spiritual exercises in preparation for the proper celebration of Easter, here are some suggestions for observance of the Lenten discipline, which consists of three separate parts:
1. Corporal (External) Fast.
2. Spiritual (Internal) Fast.
3. Spiritual Change.
Many of the early Fathers of the Church -- St. Jerome, Pope St. Leo the Great, St. Cyril of Alexandria, and St. Isidore of Seville -- tell us that the season of Lent was instituted by the Apostles themselves from the very commencement of the Church. They legislated a universal fast to serve to purify our souls of sin and to subdue our passions and inclination to sin.
The Apostles took the period of forty days from the penances in Sacred Scripture -- the Great Flood of forty days and forty nights, the wandering of the Jews in the desert for forty years to prepare for their entry into the Promised Land, the fast of our Lord for forty days and forty nights in the desert to give us an example of penance, recounted in the Holy Gospel of the First Sunday of Lent.
The traditional Lenten fast pertains to every day of Lent from Ash Wednesday until Easter, except Sundays, for those over 21 and under 59 years of age. The fast allows one large meal with meat and two small meals without. Between meals no solid food is permitted. Complete abstinence from meat pertains to those over age 7 on Ash Wednesday and, of course, on Fridays. In special cases, one should consult his confessor for advice.
This is a mild form of fasting compared to what was practiced by our Christian predecessors in earlier centuries, but one that leaves us a little on the hungry side and aware that we are depriving ourselves of the temptation to eat whenever we feel like it. Through this Lenten practice of light self-mortification, we remind ourselves to subordinate our bodies to higher spiritual purposes and to use them for God's purposes. Our self-imposed modern diets, often undertaken only for reasons of surface physical appearance, are usually much more severe. How much more important it is, rather, to fast for our interior spiritual beauty.
The question sometimes arises among those who "give up something for Lent" whether their particular abstinence applies to Sunday. First of all, this practice is voluntary, and the terms of the abstinence are set by oneself. So, for example, one might try to abstain from alcoholic beverages on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday. Or one might try to abstain from television on Sundays. Thus, one might voluntarily include, or exclude, Sundays. The Lenten fast, however, does not pertain to Sundays, because Sunday is always a day of some joy, being the Lord's Day and recalling the Resurrection.
Alternatively, one might undertake to improve the understanding of the Faith and its practice: reciting an Hour of the Divine Office, studying Scripture, learning to sing the chant hymns of the Church, reviewing the catechism, reading the history of the Church, meditating upon De Imitatione Christi (The Imitation of Christ) of Thomas a Kempis, meditating upon the daily Masses of Lent in a handmissal, praying the Stations of the Cross (Via Crucis), or other similar devotions.
Calls and messages from around the country indicated that many traditional Mass sites were not able offer the rites of Ash Wednesday. The FSSP, which has been hobbled by Protocol 1411 of 1999, was particularly compromised in this respect, but there were similar reports from some SSPX missions. More fortunate were the independent sites, where the priest is almost always local, and the Society of St. Pius V and the CMRI.
At the location where I celebrate Mass, we were fortunately in being able to have not only the full traditional rites of Ash Wednesday, but also the traditional Gregorian chant for the blessing of the ashes, preceded by the chanting of the Hour of Compline of the Divine Office. I know that other sites are trying to augment their rites and use of the chant.
Ash Wednesday is a reminder that the Traditional Catholic Movement must insist upon a full and vigorous celebration of all traditional rites of the Church, as well as the Sacred Chant of the Church. We cannot settle for half measures, such as the "indult" offers (in the limited number of places were it is available). Otherwise, we will end up with a Mass every now and then, but none of the other traditional rites of the Church, the traditional Sacraments, and the Sacred Chant.
Dear Fr. Moderator:
From time to time you publish messages from Eastern rite people claiming that the Eastern rites are better off than the Roman rite. Well, I can tell you that's just not true -- even here in the East. I'm in Armenia.
The only Catholic priest here is not much on reverence. Women are allowed in the chapel with miniskirts and without headcovering. Loud conversations are permitted in the chapel, and the priest even brings laymen up to the altar for private conversations. It is about as chaotic as it can get. This last Sunday the Armenians celebrated Poon Paregentan, and after Mass the people were spilling over from the adjacent hall into the chapel and eating pastries and whooping it up in front of the altar while I was trying to finish my post-Communion Thanksgiving prayers.
I scolded them and they just looked at me as if I were from another planet. Naturally the priest did nothing, and the festivities continued in front of the Blessed Sacrament. Disgusted, I left without joining the social gathering in the hall. Every Sunday before Mass I lead the Rosary, and a few people pray with me, but most are too busy with their own conversations with each other.
Even the schismatic (Eastern Orthodox) Armenian Apostolic Church is no better. Confessions are not private, but general. No one confesses his sins to the priest, but instead the priest reads a list of all possible sins from a list and then everyone responds (about seven times throughout at different parts), "I have sinned against God." It reminds me of a Chinese restaurant menu! Then the priest grants absolution, and instead of prescribing penance, he exhorts the penitents to do good works.
Annie of Annie's Mailbox, the successor to the Ann Landers column after the decease of the columnist, is just as clueless as was Ann Landers. A recent column included a response to a question from a woman about a homosexual suicide and the "terrible idea in her head that Alan has gone to hell because of this." She isn't a member of a particular parish, she says, but she wants to speak to a priest and ask what the Church believes about "gays" and suicides. Annie turned to the "Catholic" Extension in Chicago, home of the infamous Card. Bernardin, who was so "gay-friendly" that some demented individual even accused him of molestation, a story later recanted.
So, what does the "Catholic" Extension say about this case? "Imagine that Alan continues to share in the life that God breathed into him at birth and sustained him throughout his life. God loves Alan in a special way that only allows Him to be the ultimate judge of Alan's life." Now, what in the heck does that gobbledygook mean?
Well, this priest will answer the question directly, for Ms. Chicago and anyone else. The Catholic teaching is, and always will be, that suicide is one of the gravest sins against God. If abortion is an evil, surely suicide is a worse evil. As to the "gay" lifestyle, St. Paul in Romans 1 condemns it as "worthy of death."
This is the objective truth, which should be taught clearly and unequivocally. However, such sins, to be mortal, must be done with full knowledge and consent of will. What an individual's disposition is subjectively in this regard is known only to God Himself. We do not know whether the individual was mentally unbalanced or was convinced by miscreant individuals that such a lifestyle is perfectly acceptable or even repented of it -- that is for God to judge -- but what we do know is that objectively the individual was apparently involved in public crimes, and therefore should not have a public funeral. To do so would be to cause public scandal, as this woman's letter clearly indicates.
It does no good to cover up the truth of moral principles. St. Paul certainly doesn't hesitate. We should be just as vigorous in pointing out the mortal nature of evil acts. We should teach that evil acts, knowingly and willing done, lead to the death of soul, and even of body. Otherwise, we are sinning by cooperation and not giving the individual, in charity, the chance of conversion and repentance. We'll just have to consider Annie grossly uninformed and pandering the double-speak of Vatican II through the mouth of the "Catholic" Extension.
It seems that the Novus Ordo Archbishop of Los Angeles is lamenting the fact that there is only one presbyter for each 4040 "Catholics" in the archdiocese. This phony hand-wringing is completely typical of the Novus Ordo ecclesiocrats. This archbishop is one of the most Modernist in the United States, having issued an episcopal bulletin that as much as denied the Real Presence. Why should anyone even want to be a presbyter in such an environment?
Having created a situation in his archdiocese totally inimical to presbyters and having effectively denied the Catholic doctrine of the Real Presence, now he forwards the following hypocritical suggestion:
I encourage all of our parishes to have special days of adoration before the Blessed Sacrament.... We cannot emphasize prayer too greatly; it is the very heart of receiving more priestly vocations.
Has this man had a fit of senile dementia? Does he forget that he has previously denied the very doctrine of the Blessed Sacrament? Now his archdiocese has nothing to pray to. It has no Blessed Sacrament: just the Novus Ordo cookie that remains the bread (or cookie) it was before the Novus Ordo "words of institution," not consecration -- words that contradict the dogmatic teaching of the Council of Trent for all time and so corrupt the form of the Sacrament as to render it putatively invalid, if the defective matter and intention haven't already made it so.
One recalls the words of John Henry Cardinal Newman, the great Catholic convert from Anglicanism in the 19th century. When, after his conversion, he happened to look into an Anglican church, the words of Scripture came into his mind: "He is not here." Just so, we look into the travesty of a Novus Ordo church, its sanctuary denuded of statuary art, its marble altar replaced by a picnic table, its organ dismantled and an electronic piano substituted, its lofty Latin replaced by a vulgar tongue, and all we can say is "He is not here."
Traditional Catholics, however, have nothing to fear. The Church will not die with the few remaining elderly priests from the era of Pius XII. Oh, no. The number of traditional candidates for the priesthood continues to rise, whether they be studying independently, with the CMRI, with the SSPV, with the SSPX, or even at an "indult" institution. Christ will always provide priests for His Church, not the Counterfeit Church of the New Order.
Dear Fr. Moderator:
I have come across the term indulgence several times. I was just wondering what exactly an indulgence is. Most of the time after a prayer it says something like Indulgence of 300 Days. What does that mean?
Fr. Moderator Replies.
An appropriate question, as we look to the beginning of Lent. Even though one may be sorry for his sins, and these may be forgiven by the mercy of God, usually through sacramental Confession, there still remains a debt of justice. For example, you may be sorry that you told a lie about someone, but the damage to his reputation still remains.
This debt of justice is known as Temporal Punishment, which must be exonerated, either in Purgatory or in this life. One way of looking at the situation spiritually is to consider the removal of a nail from a board. One can remove the nail, but the hole created by it still remains.
In this life, one can do penance through prayer, fasting, or almsworks. The Church, from the treasury of the superabundant merit of the Saints, offers indulgences for these penitential practices, as an encouragement to the faithful to exonerate their debt of justice for sin in this life rather than in the more severe state of Purgatory.
In the early Church, those who had committed grievous sins did public penance for, say, 40 days, the duration of Lent. As a way of indicating the relative merit of a penance, more modern penances are indicated by the equivalent merit of such public penances. For example, if a prayer, fast, or almswork is noted as having an indulgence of 40 days, that penance would be equivalent to 40 days of public penance in the early Church.
At least that's what visitors to the Novus Ordo cathedral in Los Angeles thought when confronted with this oddity, according to the Los Angeles Times of February 15, 2003. Actually, it's now to be found in more and more Novus Ordo churches: the baptismal "pool." You see, the Novus Ordo has rejected the common method of Baptism by infusion (pouring). You have to garb yourself in a diaphanous robe and join the pond scum in a pool. At any rate, that's the closest the New Order can get to the River Jordan.
This oddity is so unidentifiable as anything religious that visitors think that it's a wishing well and throw their pennies into it. A sign that has been posted, in English and Spanish, there: Holy Water/No Coins. Well, it's really not holy water either. It's plain water mixed with bacteria, algae, and viruses like a public swimming pool, sans chlorine. Perhaps the sign would have gotten more attention if it were in Latin!
Dear Fr. Moderator:
Your mention of the incident in The Cardinal, when the Archbishop of Vienna and the Vatican Nuncio risk their lives to save the Blessed Sacrament from violation by the Nazi stormtroopers, reminded me of a real life hero, Paul Comptois, Lieutenant-Governor (12 Oct 1961 - 22 Feb 1966) of the Province of Quebec (Her Majesty's representative of the Crown in right of the province). His excellency died in office, having perished in a fire that had spread to his private chapel. Without consideration for his temporal welfare, the Honourable Paul Comtois rushed to the chapel to preserve the Blessed Sacrament, but was overcome by the flames -- a tragic loss that was much lamented and mourned by the people of Quebec and a true hero to all good Catholics of the day.
I am sure that a Novus Ordoite would not have the faintest understanding of why anyone should risk his life for Our Lord in His Sacrament. The concept is completely foreign to this execrable, new "religion." At any event, M. Comptois' state funeral was the last great occasion of the Catholic religion in Quebec, soon to be subsumed by the atheism and anti-clericalism of its so-called "Revolution Tranquille" -- which had all the disastrous effects of Robespierre's Revolution, without the bloodshed. Quebec is now the caput delictorum peccatorumque in my God-forsaken country.