Sunday, May 20, 2018

Cardinal Raymond Burke: The faithful remnant should place themselves under Christ the King during these days of apostasy...

Cardinal Raymond Burke is exhorting the faithful remnant to place themselves under Christ the King during these dark days of apostasy.

In his Encyclical Letter Quas Primas, Pope Pius XI wrote:


"In the first Encyclical Letter which We addressed at the beginning of Our Pontificate to the Bishops of the universal Church, We referred to the chief causes of the difficulties under which mankind was laboring. And We remember saying that these manifold evils in the world were due to the fact that the majority of men had thrust Jesus Christ and his holy law out of their lives; that these had no place either in private affairs or in politics: and we said further, that as long as individuals and states refused to submit to the rule of our Savior, there would be no really hopeful prospect of a lasting peace among nations. Men must look for the peace of Christ in the Kingdom of Christ; and that We promised to do as far as lay in Our power. In the Kingdom of Christ, that is, it seemed to Us that peace could not be more effectually restored nor fixed upon a firmer basis than through the restoration of the Empire of Our Lord. We were led in the meantime to indulge the hope of a brighter future at the sight of a more widespread and keener interest evinced in Christ and his Church, the one Source of Salvation, a sign that men who had formerly spurned the rule of our Redeemer and had exiled themselves from his kingdom were preparing, and even hastening, to return to the duty of obedience." (No. 1).

What of this papal teaching on the Kingship of Christ? Why is it that we hear almost nothing on this subject these days? Largely because of our modern democratic mentality. Beginning with the "Enlightenment" (although it was hardly that) and the Industrial Revolution, there was the realization that the rights and interests of a people are best furthered by self-government. This was a positive development. And as nations began to adopt more democratic models of government, the whole notion of royalty either disappeared altogether or was reduced to little more than a museum-piece whose purpose was merely to perpetuate the memory of a romanticized past.

The transition from monarchy to democracy is rightly labelled progress. This because, as any student of history knows full well, the kingship of men more often than not was an exercise in injustice, brutality and unmitigated tyranny. The reign of these merely human kings (and emperors) brings to mind the words of Lord Acton: "power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." I write these words as I listen to the Iraqi Prime Minister address the United States Congress and testify to the same.

But should this fact have any implications for our approach to the whole notion of Christ as King of the universe? Obviously we cannot totally divorce our religious concepts from those of the secular sphere. If the notion of kingship is now considered obsolete with regard to our political life, then there are two alternatives which present themselves to us: either we abandon the entire concept and terminology of kingship in the religious sphere, or we must define the Kingship of Christ more precisely so that we might better distinguish this Divine Kingship from that of merely human kings and thereby present it to the world in a more appealing way.

But can we abandon the title of king which Sacred Scripture applies to Christ? Unlike presidents, prime ministers or those we simply refer to as leaders, a king reigns; he rules. And what does it mean to reign or rule? It means to direct or order members of a given society toward their proper end. In a democratic government, it is the people who have the power to rule and the president or prime minister is merely their delegated representative. Whereas in a monarchy, the king alone has the power to rule. And this not by delegation but because this power to rule is derived from his pre-eminence or excellence.

In a democratic form of government, there are three functions which are divided and which are the proper domains of three separate brances of government: the legislative, executive and judicial. But a king possesses the fullness of these powers and it is of his royal essence that he is subject to no one else in the realm with regard to these powers.

Christ has full legislative power. We see this in the New Testament as He accomplished His task of setting up the New Covenant. He has full executive power which He exercises over His Mystical Body the Church and through His Apostles. He has full judicial power, a power which will be made all the more manifest when He returns to earth:

"I saw heaven standing open; and behold, a white horse, and he who sat upon it is called Faithful and True, and with justice he judges and wages war. And his eyes are as a flame of fire, and on his head many diadems; he has a name written which no man knows except himself. And he is clothed in a garment sprinkled with blood, and his name is called the Word of God. And the armies of heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and pure, were following him on white horses. And from his mouth goes forth a sharp sword with which to smite the nations. And he will rule them with a rod of iron, and he treads the wine press of the fierce wrath of God Almighty. And he has on his garment and on his thigh a name written, 'King of kings and Lord of lords" (Revelation 19: 11-16).

Jesus is indeed our King. And yes, He rules with a rod of iron. But not as the brutal despot rules. He rules with justice and He is Faithful and True. He is the King of the Universe who defends His people against the rule of Satan, a rule which He overthrows as He destroys the kingdom of Satan on a blood-soaked Cross.

Our King is meekness itself. He defeats the powers of darkness with an iron rod which is called love. Recall that when He stood before Pilate, the Roman governor questioned him, "Are you the king of the Jews?" (Mt 27:11). And He replied, "You say so." This statement from Jesus our King is absolute. And men of every age and place must acknowledge this truth.

Because of the modern democratic mentality, there are many within the Church who believe that they can dissent from (reject) the authoritative teaching of Jesus our King as made known through the Magisterium of His Church. Recall what Pope John Paul II had to say about this:

"While exchanges and conflicts of opinion may constitute normal expressions of public life in a representative democracy, moral teaching certainly cannot depend simply upon respect for a process: indeed, it is in no way established by following the rules and deliberative procedures typical of a democracy. Dissent, in the form of carefully orchestrated protests and polemics carried on in the media, is opposed to ecclesial communion and to a correct understanding of the hierarchical constitution of the People of God. Opposition to the teaching of the Church's Pastors cannot be seen as a legitimate expression either of Christian freedom or of the diversity of the Spirit's gifts." (Veritatis Splendor, No. 113).

The Church is hierarchical with Christ our King as the head of His Mystical Body. And our heavenly Father has sent forth His firstborn Son to establish a kingdom for a glorious purpose: "For just as in Adam all die, so too in Christ shall all be brought to life, but each one in proper order: Christ the firstfruits; then, at his coming, those who belong to Christ; then comes the end, when he hands over the kingdom to his God and Father, when he has destroyed every sovereignty and every authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death, for 'he subjected everything under his feet.' But when it says that everything has been subjected, it is clear that it excludes the one who subjected everything to him. When everything is subjected to him, then the Son himself will also be subjected to the one who subjected everything to him [the Father], so that God may be all in all." (1 Corinthians 15: 22-28).

Now that's a Kingship which should appeal to anyone!

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone on the real reason for the Church...

San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone on the role of the Catholic Church:

"the worst thing we can do, if we truly want to fulfill our reason for being as Catholics, is to soften or downplay the hard parts of our faith, those teachings where we encounter the most resistance and even hostility in the culture...The very reason the Church exists is to evangelize...It is not to antagonize nor to appease, not to pressure nor to placate, but to be Christ’s presence for others, so that they might find and encounter the one Savior of the world and come to be saved. In other words, winning souls for Christ.”

In an essay on the meaning of evangelization, Father Vincent Miceli, S.J. wrote, "Being the work of God and man in cooperation, it must ever be a thrilling and awesome adventure.  We can say, however, that this sanctifying activity proclaims Christ to those who do not know Him, preaches the Gospel to them through catechesis and missionary sermons, confers Baptism and other sacraments and tirelessly exhorts converts to scale the heights of sanctity.  Jesus Christ, Himself, the Good News of God, was the very first and greatest evangelizer.  He proclaimed an absolute Kingdom of God, making everything else relative.  He proclaimed salvation, namely liberation from sin, Satan, death, a liberation that bestowed upon sinners returned to God grace, resurrection in immortality and glorification in the triune God.  He proclaimed the price man must pay for his salvation, namely that men must gain Heaven by violence, i.e., through a life of penance, toil, and suffering accepted in the spirit of the Suffering Servant of God.  And above all He proclaimed that man must undergo that interior renewal which the Gospel calls metanoia, that is the radical change of heart and mind which destroys 'the old man of sin' and creates 'the new man of grace.'"

Fr. Miceli then explains that there are obstacles to evangelization.  He writes, "St Thomas Aquinas teaches that three things are necessary for a soul to find, follow and embrace Christ.  First, a person must know what he ought to believe.  Second, he must know what he ought to desire.  Third, he must know what he ought to do.  Now ignorance is the first great obstacle to evangelization.  Catholics, therefore, should grow in a profound knowledge of their Faith through a constant reading and reflection on the Gospels and a faithful following of the teachings of the Magisterium.  Only thus will they come to appreciate the Catholic Faith as a gift of God that is true, good and beautiful.  They then will be moved by the Holy Spirit to bring non-Catholics to share this gift from God with them..."

Finally, surveying the Catholic Church in the United States, Fr. Miceli writes, "Unfortunately, the fact is that the Church in the United States, instead of being the crusading, courageous, evangelizing society Christ founded it to be, has become a cream-puff chaplaincy to the converted - and because of this attitude is failing to hold on even to these...How are we to stir up again the spirit of evangelization?  Pope Paul VI in Evangelii Nuntiandi gives us our marching orders:

'On us particularly, the pastors of the Church, rests the responsibility for reshaping with boldness and wisdom, but in complete fidelity to the content of evangelization, the means that are most suitable and effective for communicating the Gospel message to the men and women of our times.'" (Fr. Vincent P. Miceli, citing Pope Paul VI in Evangelii Nuntiandi, No. 40).

Note this passage.  What does Pope Paul VI mean by "complete fidelity to the content of evangelization"?  The Holy Father means that pastors of the Church must offer the men and women of our times what Pope Benedict XVI has said is the entire plan of God. See here.  That is to say, the full content of Catholic teaching - including, and especially, those hard truths which the world does not want to hear but which faithful Catholics must share with hurting souls who wander about without a shepherd.

This is what evangelization is all about!

Sadly, too many priests today emphasize social justice issues or community projects and fund-raising while remaining mute on the hard truths which the faithful need to hear. These Chicken-clerics have either succumbed to fear or indifference or both.  They offer, not the fine wheat of solid Catholic doctrine, but the chaff of watered-down, cotton-candy Catholicism.

Why have so many priests succumbed to fear?  Why is it that their preaching no longer points out sin?  Fr. Garrigou-Lagrange provides us with an answer:


"The reason for this is not difficult to find.  A sermon is the result of the combined effort of all the priest's powers; it reveals his entire person; it is his struggle against the vices of the surrounding world."  In other words, if the preaching is unsound, it is because the priest's spiritual life is unsound.  Fr. Lagrange continues, "Everything in the priest cooperates in his preaching - study, reflection, his powers to compose and revise, the activity of his intellect, his imagination, his memory, his feelings, his voice.  Therefore, when he preaches, the priest stands exposed for all to study; some will be attracted, others will not.  Some will accept what he says, others will simply criticize.  So if the priest approaches his task from the human angle, he will say to himself: 'I cannot afford to lose my reputation; people of weight in the parish who take offense easily must be spared their feelings and not provoked; I must proceed warily so as not to incur criticism.'  In that way Christian eloquence is invaded by a profane eloquence in which the preacher looks after his own interests, not the glory of God or the saving of souls." (The Priest In Union With Christ, p. 156).

I've never been a fan of lying.  And this because Our Lord tells us that the Devil is the Father of all lies (John 8:44),  If it's lying you want, this Blog is not for you.  Forty years of lying has wrought so much damage to the American Catholic Church.  We are merely reaping the fruit of what we've planted.  St. Paul tells us that, "...the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.." (Galatians 5: 22).  But what fruit have we witnessed in the Catholic Church across the United States?  The Church has been infected with dry-rot as so many Catholics have succumbed to the works of the flesh.

We need heroic shepherds.  Men who, like Blessed Miguel Pro, S.J., are willing to give their very lives for the Catholic Church and her teaching.  Shepherds who offer the hard truths and not effeminized, New Agey claptrap.


Saturday, April 28, 2018

The UK is quickly becoming a Moloch State

The UK is becoming increasingly totalitarian.

Now that Alfie Evans has been murdered, six more children are being targeted for elimination.  See here.

In his Encyclical Letter Centesimus Annus, Pope John Paul II warned us that, "....totalitarianism arises out of a denial of truth in the objective sense. If there is no transcendent truth, in obedience to which man achieves his full identity, then there is no sure principle for guaranteeing just relations between people. Their self-interest as a class, group or nation would inevitably set them in opposition to one another. If one does not acknowledge transcendent truth, then the force of power takes over, and each person tends to make full use of the means at his disposal in order to impose his own interests or his own opinion, with no regard for the rights of others. People are then respected only to the extent that they can be exploited for selfish ends. Thus, the root of modern totalitarianism is to be found in the denial of the transcendent dignity of the human person who, as the visible image of the invisible God, is therefore by his very nature the subject of rights which no one may violate — no individual, group, class, nation or State. Not even the majority of a social body may violate these rights, by going against the minority, by isolating, oppressing, or exploiting it, or by attempting to annihilate it.." (No. 44).

It was Edmund Leach who warned that, "Having abandoned the God of love, the Supreme Creator, 21st-century man is now ready to worship himself and to usurp the divine powers of creation and destruction. In the words of Dr. Edmund Leach of King's College at Cambridge: 'The scientist can now play God in his role as wonder-worker, but can he - and should he - also play God as moral arbiter?...There can be no source for these moral judgments except the scientist himself. In traditional religion, morality was held to derive from God, but God was only credited with the authority to establish and enforce moral laws because He was also credited with supernatural powers of creation and destruction. Those powers have now been usurped by man, and he must take on the moral responsibility that goes with them' (Edmund Leach, "We Scientists Have the Right to Play God," The Saturday Evening Post, November 16, 1968, p. 16).

But make no mistake about it, when man becomes God society becomes, in the words of the French philosopher Gabriel Marcel, "a termite colony." We are still in the twilight, but the darkness is quickly advancing and unless we take a stand now, we will have the Moloch state. As at Auschwitz, men will determine who has quality of life and who should be "mercifully terminated."

Monday, April 23, 2018

Good Catholics cannot ignore the controversy over Francis...but at Saint Mary's Church in Orange, Massachusetts, that's standard operating procedure

Barbara Simpson writes:

"Roman Catholics were just entering the critical weekend of their Easter celebration – Holy Thursday, Good Friday, Holy Saturday and Easter Sunday, perhaps the most important commemorations in their religion – when Pope Francis threw another of his religious bombshells into the lives of his followers.

Just before Holy Thursday dawned, an interview with the pope was published in La Repubblica. It was written by the founder of the left-wing publication, Eugenio Scalfari, an Italian atheist.

In the article, the 93-year old journalist claimed the pope told him hell does not exist because people are not punished. If they do not repent and go to heaven, they just 'disappear.'

According to Scalfari, the pope said, 'There is no hell – there is the disappearance of sinful souls.'

Inasmuch as that’s a refutation of a core belief of Catholicism, when word of the interview got out, it spread like wildfire, in religious and mainstream publications.

Criticism was widespread, from The Drudge Report to the New York Times, to say nothing of the international press. There was consternation among clergy, and the average churchgoer was at a loss as to what was going on.

The Italian press acknowledged the pope had met with Scalfari five or six times in the past for lengthy 'interviews' and that the journalist does not take notes, nor does he record any interviews. As a result, there clearly were doubts raised as to the accuracy of what he claimed were Francis’ statements. In fact, this was not the first time such questions have been raised about his 'interviews' with the pope.

The Vatican also jumped to respond – but not forcefully. Its reaction didn’t deny what the pope said, but also didn’t affirm it, saying essentially that some of the words were not those of the pope.

Uh, exactly, what does that mean? The problem is that his statements are indeed heretical, so what now?

Apparently, nothing. Francis goes his merry way leaving bits and pieces of his Church and doctrine fraying around the edges and thoughtful clergy beginning to be angry.

American Cardinal Raymond Burke is greatly concerned about what is happening with this pope, saying that by not clarifying what was said, he only 'feeds the confusion.'

Burke is a well-known canon lawyer and the former head of the highest Vatican court. He didn’t mince any words, saying that what Pope Francis said 'went beyond what is tolerable' and is 'a source of deep scandal.'

The whole situation has left many questions, and it appears that there will be no answers, at least not yet. Either Pope Francis is the most naive of men or an individual dedicated to shaking up the lives of Catholics for a purpose he hasn’t revealed.

To the layman, it would appear he’s intent on undermining Catholic beliefs and watering down Church doctrines to suit some ulterior motive.

Regardless of which, it’s dangerous territory and could threaten to tear apart a Church already losing membership and clergy. There are those who believe the Church faces the possibility of collapse during this generation.

And speaking of church destruction, Cardinal Joseph Zen, who is the emeritus bishop of Hong Kong, is furious with how the pope has handled dealing with China and Catholic Church activities in that country. He’s blasted the deal, which he says, appeases China by agreeing to have the government choose Church leadership. He says that will be the annihilation of the 'underground church,' which is, in fact, a church that follows traditional Catholicism.

He should know: He spent seven years teaching in China’s official, state-approved church and said he 'know[s] that the church is completely enslaved to the government.' Remember, it’s a Communist government.

But there’s more. Over time, it’s been clear Francis veers left on most of his public positions on world affairs, from war to the environment to the family to borders and refugees.

And there he is again – this time, equating protecting the lives of the unborn to protecting the lives of migrants and their rights. In his latest 'guidance for Catholics,' published just last week, Pope Francis said that Christians must care for immigrants just as they care for the unborn.

In his text, 'Gaudate et Exsultate' ('Rejoice and Be Glad'), he said all human lives matter, and he went on to enumerate everything from the living, the sick, slaves, victims of trafficking and anyone rejected for any reason. While he reaffirmed the Church’s position of the sinfulness of abortion, he criticized those who see it as more important than migration.

He said the defense of the 'innocent unborn' should not supersede the defense of the poor or migrants.

Again, just what does that mean? Here he’s dealing with the issues of borders and massive migrations across Europe and North America. The pope has spoken out before that migrants have rights that supersede the sovereign rights of countries. Now that he is putting the burden of 'sin' on those who oppose open borders, the picture, for Catholics, at least, has changed.

But there’s even more: The pope has just released a written apology to the bishops of Chile for a long-standing child abuse situation.

There are 64 victims in New York and Chile involving a cover-up by Chilean Bishop Juan Barros, a man the pope has supported over the years. Despite the allegations of abuse, the pope continually denied knowing of their validity and said he’d never heard from any of the victims.

The recent Vatican investigation, as reported on LifeSite, finally forced the pope to admit that 'he made grave errors' in this case. In his written note, he asks 'the forgiveness of all those whom I offended over the years,' blaming it on a lack of true information.

He omitted any call for justice against those who committed the abuses. Just an 'I’m sorry.'

So Pope Francis is human and made a big mistake. Now what?

It’s not common for Catholics to criticize a pope – but it is the opinion of this cradle Catholic, and I suspect I am not alone, that he’s used up his 'passes.'

It’s time for Pope Francis to step aside and spend time in deep reconciliation with his faith and God – thus putting an end to his reign of Catholic confusion."

While many clergy, religious and laity are deeply concerned over the errors and misguided actions of Francis, sadly some blindly follow him, preferring to keep their heads in the sand.

And while Raymond Arroyo, over at EWTN, has said that good Catholics cannot ignore the controversy over Francis - see here -  some prefer to view the pope not so much as the Custodian of immutable truths, but as a sort of ersatz wizard with a magic wand, capable of changing that which has been revealed by the Lord Jesus, the true Head of the Catholic Church, Who will judge us all - Popes included.

This is the situation at Saint Mary's Church in Orange, Massachusetts. For Father Shaun O'Connor and his "pastoral team," there is not only no reason for concern, but we should all be enthralled with Francis, his errors, falsehoods and wreckovation included.

Which makes me wonder: Whom do they worship?  Christ the Second Person of the Trinity, the Incarnate Word, or a frustrated modernist who seems Hell-bent on undermining Catholic teaching while sowing confusion.

Confusion is not a gift of the Holy Spirit. It is, in fact, a mark of the Devil. Perhaps this explains

why the Saint Michael Prayer has been dropped after weekend liturgies at the parish.


Saturday, April 21, 2018

Under Francis, the Catholic Church in decline

Life Site News reports:

"The Catholic Church is seeing its biggest decline in Mass attendance in the U.S. in decades that started between the papacies of Pope Benedict XVI and Pope Francis, a new Gallup poll says.

'From 2014 to 2017, an average of 39% of Catholics reported attending church in the past seven days. This is down from an average of 45% from 2005 to 2008 and represents a steep decline from 75% in 1955,' the poll found.

Francis became Pope in 2013.

Weekly Mass attendance among Catholics dropped six percentage points, the findings said, with fewer than four in 10 Catholics going to Mass in any given week.

In contrast, the survey said church attendance remained strong over the last decade with U.S. Protestants."

The eclipse of the Church has been prophesied by Our Lady:

"Mélanie, what I am going to tell you now will not always be a secret; you can publish it in 1858...

Priests, my Son's ministers, priests, by their evil life, by their irreverences and their impiety in celebrating the holy mysteries, love of money, love of honor and pleasures, priests have become sewers of impurity. Yes, priests call forth vengeance, and vengeance is suspended over their heads. Woe to priests, and to persons consecrated to God, who by their infidelities and their evil life are crucifying my son anew! The sins of persons consecrated to God cry to heaven and call for vengeance, and now here is vengeance at their very doors, for no longer is anyone found to beg mercy and pardon for the people; there are no more generous souls, there is now no one worthy of offering the spotless Victim to the Eternal on the worlds behalf.

God will strike in an unparalleled manner. Woe to the inhabitants of the earth! God will exhaust His anger, and no one will be able to escape so many evils at once. The heads, the leaders of the people of God, have neglected prayer and penance, and the devil has darkened their minds; they have become those wandering stars which the ancient devil will drag with his tail to destruction. God will permit the ancient serpent to sow divisions among rulers, in all societies and in all families; both physical and moral punishments will be suffered. God will abandon men to themselves and will send chastisements one after the other for over 35 years.

Society is on the very eve of most terrible scourges and greatest events; one must expect to be governed by a rod of iron and to drink the chalice of God's wrath..."

- Our Lady to Melanie Calvat, La Salette France.


In his book Communism and the Conscience of the West, Archbishop Fulton John Sheen warned that, "He [Satan] will set up a counterchurch which will be the ape of the Church, because he, the Devil, is the ape of God. It will have all the notes and characteristics of the Church, but in reverse and emptied of its divine content. It will be a mystical body of the Antichrist that will in all externals resemble the Mystical Body of Christ...Then will be verified a paradox - the very objections with which men in the last century rejected the Church will be the reasons why they will now accept the counterchurch." (pp. 24-25).

Even now, many are working to subvert the Catholic Church from within. Pastors who have been seduced by the spirit of Antichrist and who have fallen into hidden (and sometimes not so hidden) apostasy. As Michael Brown has noted in his book The Trumpet of Gabriel, "The spirit of anti-christ precedes the physical Antichrist. The spiritual battle precedes the physical one.." (p. 218).

Our Lady told Father Bobbi:

"The great trial has come for the Church, so violated by the evil spirits, so divided in its unity, so darkened in its holiness. See how error has flooded throughout it, error which leads to the loss of the true faith. Apostasy is spreading everywhere...how many are those pastors who grope about in the mist, become speechless out of fear or compromise, and who no longer defend their flocks from the many rapacious wolves!...The faithful are being drawn in by the enticements of a world which has become pagan, or by the countless sects which are spreading more and more.


The hour its great trial has above all come for the Church, because it will be shaken by the lack of faith, obscured by apostasy, wounded by betrayal, abandoned by its children, divided by schisms, possessed and dominated by Freemasonry, turned into fertile soil from which will spring up the wicked tree of the man of iniquity, the Antichrist, who will bring his kingdom into its interior." (Our Lady to Father Stefano Gobbi, January 1, 1993, Rubbio (Vicenza, Italy).

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Francis: This atheist was a "good man" who is in Heaven

Just recently, Francis told a young boy whose atheist father passed away, "Maybe we could cry like Emanuele when we have pain in our heart. He cries for his father who died and has had the courage to do it in front of us because there is love in his heart – he underlines – his father was an atheist but he had his four children baptized, he was a good man. It’s nice that a son says his dad was “good.” If that man was able to make children like that he was a good man, God is proud of your father. God has a father’s heart, your dad was a good man, he’s in heaven with him, I’m sure. God has a father’s heart and before an unbelieving father who was able to baptize his children, would God be able to abandon him? God surely was proud of your father, because it is easier to be a believer and to have children baptized than to be a believer and to have their children baptized. Pray for your dad, talk to your dad. This is the answer”.

Francis assured the boy in question that his atheist father was a "good man" and in Heaven.

A good man.  The Lord Jesus teaches us something quite different in the eighteenth chapter of the Gospel of Luke, verses 18-19:

"An official asked him this question, 'Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?' Jesus answered him, 'Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone.'"

It is true that Lumen Gentium 16 of the Second Vatican Council teaches that:

"Those also can attain to salvation who through no fault of their own do not know the Gospel of Christ or His Church, yet sincerely seek God and moved by grace strive by their deeds to do His will as it is known to them through the dictates of conscience."

Through no fault of their own.  Francis cannot state with certainty that this atheist is in Heaven any more than we can state he is in Hell.  God alone is the Judge in this matter.  He alone can judge this man's soul.  He alone knows whether he was culpable for not being baptized himself or embracing Catholic truth.  Gaudium et Spes, No. 28 of the same Council: "God alone is the judge and searcher of hearts, for that reason He forbids us to make judgments about the internal guilt of anyone."  But just as we cannot make judgments regarding a person's internal guilt, so too we cannot make judgments regarding a person's innocence or lack of culpability for the truths which they violate.  God alone is the "Judge and searcher of hearts." Does Francis consider himself God?

Athanasian Creed

1. Whosoever will be saved, before all things it is necessary that he hold the catholic faith;
2. Which faith except every one do keep whole and undefiled, without doubt he shall perish everlastingly.
3. And the catholic faith is this: That we worship one God in Trinity, and Trinity in Unity;
4. Neither confounding the persons nor dividing the substance.
5. For there is one person of the Father, another of the Son, and another of the Holy Spirit.
6. But the Godhead of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit is all one, the glory equal, the majesty coeternal.
7. Such as the Father is, such is the Son, and such is the Holy Spirit.
8. The Father uncreated, the Son uncreated, and the Holy Spirit uncreated.
9. The Father incomprehensible, the Son incomprehensible, and the Holy Spirit incomprehensible.
10. The Father eternal, the Son eternal, and the Holy Spirit eternal.
11. And yet they are not three eternals but one eternal.
12. As also there are not three uncreated nor three incomprehensible, but one uncreated and one incomprehensible.
13. So likewise the Father is almighty, the Son almighty, and the Holy Spirit almighty.
14. And yet they are not three almighties, but one almighty.
15. So the Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Spirit is God;
16. And yet they are not three Gods, but one God.
17. So likewise the Father is Lord, the Son Lord, and the Holy Spirit Lord;
18. And yet they are not three Lords but one Lord.
19. For like as we are compelled by the Christian verity to acknowledge every Person by himself to be God and Lord;
20. So are we forbidden by the catholic religion to say; There are three Gods or three Lords.
21. The Father is made of none, neither created nor begotten.
22. The Son is of the Father alone; not made nor created, but begotten.
23. The Holy Spirit is of the Father and of the Son; neither made, nor created, nor begotten, but proceeding.
24. So there is one Father, not three Fathers; one Son, not three Sons; one Holy Spirit, not three Holy Spirits.
25. And in this Trinity none is afore or after another; none is greater or less than another.
26. But the whole three persons are coeternal, and coequal.
27. So that in all things, as aforesaid, the Unity in Trinity and the Trinity in Unity is to be worshipped.
28. He therefore that will be saved must thus think of the Trinity.
29. Furthermore it is necessary to everlasting salvation that he also believe rightly the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ.
30. For the right faith is that we believe and confess that our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is God and man.
31. God of the substance of the Father, begotten before the worlds; and man of substance of His mother, born in the world.
32. Perfect God and perfect man, of a reasonable soul and human flesh subsisting.
33. Equal to the Father as touching His Godhead, and inferior to the Father as touching His manhood.
34. Who, although He is God and man, yet He is not two, but one Christ.
35. One, not by conversion of the Godhead into flesh, but by taking of that manhood into God.
36. One altogether, not by confusion of substance, but by unity of person.
37. For as the reasonable soul and flesh is one man, so God and man is one Christ;
38. Who suffered for our salvation, descended into hell, rose again the third day from the dead;
39. He ascended into heaven, He sits on the right hand of the Father, God, Almighty;
40. From thence He shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
41. At whose coming all men shall rise again with their bodies;
42. and shall give account of their own works.
43. And they that have done good shall go into life everlasting and they that have done evil into everlasting fire.
44. This is the catholic faith, which except a man believe faithfully he cannot be saved.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Cardinal Robert Sarah on the real mission of the Church...

Lifesite News reports:

"The Church would ignore the "real crisis" she faces today if she focuses on social justice issues rather than her basic mission to evangelize, Cardinal Robert Sarah warns in a newly-published interview.

'The Church is gravely mistaken as to the nature of the real crisis if she thinks that her essential mission is to offer solutions to all the political problems relating to justice, peace, poverty, the reception of migrants, etc. while neglecting evangelisation,' the cardinal told Aid to the Church in Need on April 18.

Sarah, who is the Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship, said that while the Church 'cannot disassociate herself from the human problems,' she will ultimately 'fail in her mission' if she forgets her real purpose.

The cardinal quoted Yahya Pallavicini, an Italian and former Catholic who converted to Islam, to drive home his point: 'If the Church, with the obsession she has today with the values of justice, social rights and the struggle against poverty, ends up as a result by forgetting her contemplative soul, she will fail in her mission and she will be abandoned by a great many of her faithful, owing to the fact that they will no longer recognize in her what constitutes her specific mission.'

The Church’s mission is summed by Jesus in Matthew’s Gospel when he sent his followers to 'go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.' This mission, according to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, means 'proclaiming and establishing among all peoples the Kingdom of Christ and of God.'

Sarah’s remarks are interesting given the emphasis Pope Francis has placed on the Church working with migrants and refugees. In his addresses to world leaders, Pope Francis frequently highlights political problems, such as migration, with little mention of Christ or the Church's evangelical call."

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Standing before a statue of Mary near the Spanish Steps some years ago, on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, Pope Benedict XVI reminded his listeners that the Gospel is the good news of freedom from sin, that it is "the proclamation of the victory of grace over sin, of life over death."  Proponents of the "social gospel" have forgotten this.  The mission of the Church is not to eradicate poverty or social injustice.  As Dr. Dietrich von Hildebrand explains, while "a deep interest in the earthly welfare of our neighbor is a central duty of the Christian and an essential demand of the love of neighbor," still, "it is definitely no part of the message of Christ that there is to be no more poverty, no more war, that the earth is to become a natural paradise."

Proponents of the "social gospel" fail to understand, as Dr. Hildebrand reminds us, that "..the primary task of the Church is the proclamation of the divine Revelation, the protection of it against all heresies, the the sanctification of the soul of the individual, the securing of his eternal salvation - this is the spreading of the kingdom of God on earth, and not the attempt to build up an earthly paradise." (Essay entitled This-Worldliness).

Dr. Hildebrand explains that, "...the motive of many for eliminating poverty (which itself is not morally wicked, but only a morally relevant evil) is not rooted in the spirit of Christ or His Gospel, but in a humanitarian ideal.  The widespread tendency today to demand everything as a right and to refuse to accept any gifts is surely no manifestation of a Christian spirit.  There is in reality a clear, sharply delineated difference between justice and love.  Justice can and should be protected and demanded by state law; but love of neighbor could never be demanded by any law.  For it is a duty before God, and no state law could or should prescribe it or enforce it.  Love of neighbor presupposes the fulfillment of the claims of justice, but it goes far beyond this.  The words of the Gospel, 'if someone asks you to go one mile, go two miles with him,' clearly go far beyond the sphere of justice.  Of course, it is a pharisaical hypocrisy to the demands of justice as if one were giving alms.  But it is a terrible pride not to want to accept any alms, and to demand that which comes as a gift.  The true Christian should be happier to receive alms and to be grateful for them, than simply to receive what he has a right to. When he receives a gift he is happy not only over the good which is the gift, but also over the goodness of the giver; and he experiences it as a great source of happiness that he can and should be grateful."

Priests and deacons who have succumbed to the distortions of the "social gospel" seldom, if ever, preach against sin or remind their listeners of the reality of Hell.  Dr. Hildebrand addresses this fact saying that, "this-worldly tendency can be detected in various pastoral letters, and above all in countless sermons.  One speaks more about the fight against poverty and for social justice and world peace - in a word, more about improving the world - than about offending God by our sins, sanctifying the individual, about heaven and hell, eternity and the hope of eternal union with God in the beatific vision.  The this-worldly tendency emphasizes the earthly future more than eternity..." (This-Worldliness).

The true Christian, in the Creed, proclaims: Et exspecto resurrectionem mortuorum, et vitam venturi saeculi - 'We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come." But proponents of the "social gospel" have largely abandoned such a hope and prefer instead to embrace a humanitarian religion and to work for an earthly "utopia."  Robert Hugh Benson, in his classic work entitled The Lord of the World, describes this humanitarian religion:

"Humanitarianism..is becoming an actual religion itself; though anti-supernatural.  It is a pantheism.  Pantheism deifies all nature, God is the world, but naturally, man above all is God since he is the highest expression of nature.  It is a religion devoid of the 'super' natural, because since God is nature itself, there is no longer a distinction between Creator and creature.  The creature is God and hence arbitrator of his own destiny and establishes the moral law for himself....Humanitarianism is a religion devoid of the supernatural.  It is developing a ritual under Freemasonry; it has a creed, 'God is man'; and the rest.  It has, therefore, a real food of a sort to offer religious cravings: it idealizes and yet makes no demands upon the spiritual faculties..." (Introduction, p. xvii).

The Church's mission is not to solve poverty.  In fact, Jesus said that we would always have the poor with us (Mark 14: 7).  The Church's mission is the salvation of souls.  When a crowd of people went searching for Jesus and found Him on the other side of the Sea of Galilee, they said to Him, 'Rabbi, when did you come here?'  And Jesus answered them, 'Truly, truly, I say to you you seek me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves.  Do not labour for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you; for on Him has God the Father set His seal."  The crowd said to Him, "What must we do, to be doing the works of God?"  And Jesus answered them: "This is the work of God, that you believe in Him who He has sent." (John 6: 25-29).

The work of God is believing in Him whom the Father has sent.  Jesus reveals Himself as the Bread of Life.  He reveals in the synagogue who He is, where He comes from and the good things He has in store for those who believe in Him: faith, the Eucharist and eternal life.

Proponents of the 'social gospel" have forgotten that "man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God" (Matthew 4: 4).  Crippled by distorted humanitarian ideals, such confused souls forget Our Lord's injunction to "seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things (food, drink, clothing etc) shall be yours as well." (Matthew 6: 33).
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