DO NOT GROW WEARY AND FAINT, REMAIN VIGILANT, PRAY AND LOVE JESUS CHRIST AND OTHERS AS HE TAUGHT US

Where is the Church?

Yesterday, I asked a question on my Facebook page that has been on my mind:

Does the proposition, “The Catholic Church as we know it no longer exists” seem like an overreach? I think we’ve reached a point where we have to re-define our terms.

Dozens of comments later, I can’t say that I have an answer I’m satisfied with.

As I explained in a followup to my post, the reason I’m asking is because of the dawning realization I’ve been coming to that reporting on this or that scandal in the Church is not simply a case of exposing corruption or documenting outliers but merely observing the day-to-day status quo.

Only holiness and positive developments are outliers now. Bad stories are the norm; good stories are much harder to find.

The actual Catholic Church — the one that leads people to eternal salvation and nourished countless saints — is in what appears to be a devastating retreat. Go the average traditional chapel and — if they’re an Ecclesia Deicommunity, at least — you’ll often hear that they just can’t pay attention to what’s going on in Rome. It’s counterproductive, they’ll tell you. And that’s probably true. But the bunker mentality leads, in a way, to isolation and atomization.

Meanwhile, reports filter in about orthodox Bishops and Cardinals who have been forbidden to speak in various dioceses or who think that what is happening in Rome has become severe to the point of apostasy. Yet these same men will not allow any of these reports to be put on the record, such is the obsequiousness cultivated toward the papacy.

And through it all, the laity are left perusing the headlines, trying to find the proper mental gymnastics to explain things away. Each day’s news is like a renewed assault on the Catholic sensibility. I’ll give you a taste of what I have open in my internet browser at the moment.

From Phil Lawler, quoting the pseudonymous priest “Diogenes” circa 2005:

The Washington Times reports that “the U.S. Catholic bishops will sidestep the issue of whether gay men should become priests at their semiannual meeting,” which began today at the Chicago Fairmont.

And why, boys and girls, was it a foregone conclusion that the bishops would “sidestep” the issue? Because the question of whether gays should be ordained cannot be addressed without first addressing a considerably more explosive question: the number of bishop-disputants who are themselves gay and have a profound personal interest that there be no public examination of the connections between their sexual appetites, their convictions, and their conduct of office.

Thirteen years later, as the fallout from the McCarrick scandal continues to unfold, we’re left to wonder why nothing has changed.

From Rod Dreher, at The American Conservative:

One former priest who left the priesthood in disgust over the constant gay sex among other priests, and the adamant refusal of his bishop — who is today a cardinal — to do anything about it, wrote me, using his name, and providing details. He says this cardinal was part of a gay clique before he became a bishop, and therefore had no reason to act on the information he (this priest) and others provided him — including information about a gay priest whose sexual crimes landed him behind bars. I’m going to ask that former priest if he’s willing to go public, and name names. I’ve heard rumors about this cardinal, but never details like this. He needs to have a #MeToo moment.

From Julia Meloni, at LifeSiteNews:

October’s youth synod is about finishing the old business of the St. Gallen mafia. It will mark four years since Archbishop Bruno Forte crafted a manipulated synodal report on the “precious support” found in same-sex relationships – released the very day that two Italian political parties backed homosexual unions.

Pope Francis approved the text before it was published, and his homily that day excoriated” doctors of the law” – an “evil generation” – for resisting the “God of surprises.” Archbishop Forte, meanwhile, declared to the media that “describ[ing] the rights of people living in same-sex unions” is a matter of “being civilized.”

From Diane Montagna, at LifeSiteNews:

The demographic collapse of the West in recent decades was planned in order to create the necessary conditions to usher in a New World Order, and the authors of this collapse are now influencing the Vatican at the highest levels, the former president of the Vatican bank has said.

Speaking at the first international conference of the John Paul II academy for human life and the family, Italian economist and banker Ettore Gotti Tedeschi said efforts to decrease the world’s population by globalist elites have set in motion a series of predictable and intended economic, geo-political, and social catastrophes meant to “persuade” people around the world to accept a global “political vision” that would eliminate national sovereignty and institute “gnostic environmentalism” as its “universal religion.”

[…]

According to Gotti Tedeschi, the “greatest enemy” of the New World Order is the family because it provides “education, autonomy and independence” from the state. Its second enemy is the Catholic Church, he said, and yet these gnostic prophets are “rewriting genesis in the halls of the Vatican.”

From Dorothy Cummings McLean, at LifeSiteNews:

The Vatican has dropped a criminal investigation against Libero Milone, a Catholic layman they hired to audit their finances. This despite the fact that in September the Vatican chief of police, Domenico Giani, told Reuters that there was “overwhelming evidence” against the former Auditor General.

Now, however, Edward Pentin of the National Catholic Register has reported that “the separate inquiry conducted by the Vatican promoter of justice with Milone’s lawyers came to the conclusion that no evidence existed to support the accusations that had been lodged against him.”

Pentin also cited an unnamed source who had told the Register on July 5 that Milone had “apparent apparently stumbled upon certain and clear abuses of funds, and they could no longer wait to remove him.”

How about this, from Matthew Cullinan Hoffman, also at LifeSiteNews?

A group of Catholic clergy and theologians, including two bishops, have signed an ecumenical declaration with Anglican clergy published on the Vatican website that affirms the possibility that the Catholic Church might create a “female diaconate” in the future, which would imply a contradiction of Catechism of the Catholic Church and the Church’s 2000-year tradition.

Or this, from Andrea Tornielli at Vatican Insider, confirming (in my mind anyway) a report we made last year about the re-visitation of Humanae Vitae in the hopes of finding loopholes:

Paul VI, in October 1967, during the first Synod of Bishops held in the Vatican, had the Cardinal Secretary of State ask for an opinion on contraception in view of the publication of the encyclical. Only 26 of the 200 bishops present produced a written response. Of these, most said they were in favor of some opening to the pill, while 7 were against. But Pope Montini, who had already removed the subject from the Council discussion and had listened to the opinions of a commission of experts (the majority of whom were in favor), did not believe that there was any reason to change the position held up to that moment by his predecessors and promulgated a few months after his Humanae vitae, which came out in July – fifty years ago – lacking however the chrism of infallibility, as some would have liked.

This is one of the new elements that emerges from the research of Monsignor Gilfredo Marengo, author of the book “La nascita di un’enciclica. Humanae vitae alla luce degli Archivi Vaticaniˮ (Birth of an encyclical. Humanae vitae in the light of the Vatican Archives) published by Libreria Editrice Vaticana; a search in the light of never consulted before documents, which allowed to reconstruct the genesis of the encyclical, its various drafts, the corrections made by Paul VI.

[…]

The news of the Pope’s desire to consult all the members of the synodal assembly is very important – Marengo points out- because one of the most repeated accusations, after the publication of Humanae vitae, was that the Pope had decided in solitude, in a non- collegial way”.

Perhaps most striking, among the assortment of stories in front of me, are the words of Michael Brendan Dougherty, who writes in the pages of National Review:

There is an undeniable psychological tension between my religious belief that I cannot have hope for salvation outside the visible, institutional Church and my honest conviction that of all the institutions and societies that intersect with my life, the Church is by far the most corrupt, the most morally lax, the most disillusioning, and the most dangerous for my children. In that tension, personal prayer will dry up like dew at noon. [emphasis added]

This cross-section of ecclesiastical news, and the reaction to it, is far from comprehensive, but it tells us a great deal.

In the Facebook discussion, some mentioned the notion of a faithful “remnant”, as so often comes up in conversations like these. My response was to say: talking in vague terms about a Remnant is fine, but what does that mean? Where is it? How does that play out in the lives and families of those trying to simply stay on the path to salvation? How do we raise kids in this without them becoming bitter or giving up on what seems a quixotic refusal to let go of something dying?

How do we boil down what the Church truly is, in her essence, and separate that from what we get in almost every parish we walk into? Just saying “I’m Catholic” could mean virtually anything in 2018, and that’s a problem for us.

So I ask again: where is the Church? What does it consist of when 95% of parishes and bishops and priests and laity are actually not, in any substantive sense, Catholic?

What does it mean when the handful of orthodox bishops in the Church — those very few who give us hope — would prefer to endure unjust persecution rather than stand their ground and fight on behalf of the faithful?

I think paring down the bloat and getting to the lifeblood of what the Church is, and where we find it, is actually where people are going to find some hope. It may feel like going through the motions for a while. But as Michael Dougherty also writes:

Where do I find hope? I find it in the faces of other young Catholics. The families at my parish who make real sacrifices for the Faith. I find it in the young writers such as Sohrab Ahmari , B. D. McClay, and Matthew Schmitz who still convert and fall in love as I did. … Even if sometimes my personal piety dries into dust and nothingness, the bell rings at Mass, my knee drops to the floor, and if nothing else, this gesture testifies objectively to the reality that Christ is present in the Eucharist, that Christ is Lord. Hopefully for now, that’s all I need to know.

This, as the interminable winter in the Church stretches on, is where I think more of our time could be well spent. Preserving the beloved things. Finding green shoots poking up through the ice. Reminding each other that despite all appearances, hope is not lost.

I plan to dedicate more of my time in the coming months to such pursuits.

I will spend more time with books. I will attempt to find more time for prayer, and in gratitude. I will seek out the true, the good, and the beautiful. I will, I hope, find a way to recharge somewhat, and seek healing for my battle-weary soul.

This means that you may see a bit less of me here for a while, or that my contributions will take different forms, as I seek to prioritize quality over quantity. In the mean time, the work we do here will continue with the help of those capable soldiers ready to carry the standard.

We know that the Church continues, but she is being reduced to a fraction of what she once was. This is a hard truth, but one we must come to terms with. What choice have we but to press on?

Where is the Church? Its treasures are scattered, but they are present in those who hold to and keep the faith. We need to find each other in the darkness, and gather our light.

“Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life.” (John 6:69)

{Steve Skojec has written yet another excellent post on his excellent website OnePeterFive.  This, his latest post, is however negative to a fault.  

If we only focus on the corruption extant in the hierarchy and in the Curia in Rome we cultivate a myopia that prevents us from seeing the Church in all of her wondrous aspects, the Church is after all a Divine Mystery.

To maintain our sanity and better understand the reality of what we are experiencing these days in the reign of Francis the Mercyfull we must not loose sight of the invisible Church, the completely spiritual Church, that is alive in the hearts and minds of millions of people around the earth.  If we focus only on the institutional Church, the Church of dioceses, archdioceses, ecclesial provinces, national episcopal conferences, and the Vatican Curia we are certainly suffering from myopia.  The scandals and corruption that are all to evident in the daily reports in the media distract us from the reality that the Church lives on in the hearts and minds of those millions of Catholics who love Our Lord Jesus Christ and his Blessed Mother.

There are two historical examples I can cite  to prove the validity of what I assert above.

First, the case of Japan.  From the New Advent Catholic Encyclopedia:

“There is not in the whole history of the Church a single people who can offer to the admiration of the Christian world annals as glorious, and a martyrology as lengthy, as those of the people of Japan. In January, 1552, St. Francis Xavier had remarked the proselytizing spirit of the early neophytes. “I saw them”, he wrote, “rejoicing in our successes, manifesting an ardent zeal to spread the faith and to win over to baptism the pagans they conquered.” It was not until 1587, when there were 200,000 Christians in Japan, that an edict of persecution, or rather of prescription, was passed to the surprise of everyone, at the instigation of a bigoted bonze, Nichijoshonin, zealous for the religion of his race. Twenty-six residences and 140 churches were destroyed; the missionaries were condemned to exile, but were clever enough to hide or scatter. They (the lay catechists) never doubted the constancy of their converts; they assisted them in secret and in ten years there were 100,000 other converts in Japan.”The astonishing fruit of the generous sacrifice of our 26 martyrs” (wrote a Jesuitmissionary) “is that the Christians, recent converts and those of maturer faith, have been confirmed in the faith and hope of eternal salvation; they have firmly resolved to lay down their lives for the name of Christ. The very pagans who assisted at the martyrdom were struck at seeing the joy of the blessed ones as they suffered on their crosses and the courage with which they met death”.When in 1854, Commodore Perry forced an entry to Japan, it was learned that the Christian faith, after two centuries of intolerance, was not dead. In 1865, priests of the foreign Missions found 20,000 Christians practising their religion in secret at Kiushu. Religious liberty was not granted them by Japanese law until 1873. Up to that time in 20 provinces, 3404 had suffered for the faith in exile or in prison; 660 of these had died, and 1981 returned to their homes. In 1858, 112 Christians, among whom were two chief-baptizers, were put to death by torture. One missionary calculates that in all 1200 died for the faith.

The reality is that for several centuries the Church existed in Japan without priests, bishops, archbishops, cardinals or any contact with the Vatican Curia or a pope.  It isn’t that those representatives of an institutional Church are not important, it is simply that the Church, the Mystical Church that lives in the spiritual life of ordinary lay Catholics, can manage to survive for centuries on its own by the grace of Jesus Christ.

The second example is that of England.  From the New Advent Catholic Encyclopedia:

By a series of statutes, successive sovereigns and Parliaments from Elizabeth to George III, sought to prevent the practice of the Catholic Faith in England. To the sanguinary laws passed by Elizabeth further measures, sometimes inflicting new disqualifications and penalties, sometimes reiterating previous enactments, were added until this persecuting legislation made its effects felt in every department of human life. Catholics lost not only freedom of worship, but civil rights as well; their estates, property, and sometimes even lives were at the mercy of any informer. The fact that these laws were passed as political occasion demanded deprived them of any coherence or consistency; nor was any codification ever attempted, so that the task of summing up this long and complicated course of legislation is a difficult one. In his historical account of the penal laws, published at the time when partial relief had only just been granted, the eminent lawyer, Charles Butler, the first Catholic to be called to the Bar after the Catholic Relief Act of 1791, and the first to be appointed King’s Counsel after the Catholic Emancipation Act, thought it best to group these laws under five heads:

  • those which subjected Catholics to penalties and punishments for practising their religious worship;
  • those which punished them for not conforming to the Established Church (Statutes of Recusancy.
  • those regulating the penalties or disabilities attending the refusal to take the Oath of Supremacy (1559; 1605; 1689), the declarations against Transubstantiation(Test Act, 1673) and against Popery (1678);
  • the act passed with respect to receiving the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper;
  • statutes affecting landed property.

For the present purpose, however, it seems preferable to adopt a chronological arrangement, which more clearly exhibits the historical development of the code and the state of the law at any particular period.

The Penal Laws began with the two Statutes of Supremacy and Uniformity by which Queen Elizabeth, in 1559, initiated her religious settlement; and her legislation falls into three divisions corresponding to three definitely marked periods:

  • 1558-70 when the Government trusted to the policy of enforcing conformity by fines and deprivations;
  • 1570-80 from the date of the excommunication to the time when the Government recognized the Catholic reaction due to the seminary priests and Jesuits;
  • from 1580 to the end of the reign.

To the first period belong the Acts of Supremacy and Uniformity (I Eliz. 1 and 2) and the amending statute (5 Eliz. c. 1). By the Act of Supremacy all who maintained the spiritual or ecclesiastical authority of any foreign prelate were to forfeit all goods and chattels, both real and personal, and all benefices for the first offence, or in case the value of these was below 20 pounds, to be imprisoned for one year; they were liable to the forfeitures of Praemunire for the second offence and to the penalties of high treason for the third offence. These penalties of Praemunire were: exclusion from the sovereign’s protection, forfeiture of all lands and goods, arrest to answer to the Sovereign and Council. The penalties assigned for high treason were:

  • drawing, hanging and quartering;
  • corruption of blood, by which heirs became incapable of inheriting honours and offices; and, lastly
  • forfeiture of all property.

These first statutes were made stricter by the amending act (5 Eliz. c.1) which declared that to maintain the authority of the pope in any way was punishable by penalties of Praemunire for the first offence and of high treason, though without corruption of blood, for the second. All who refused the Oath of Supremacy were subjected to the like penalties. The Act of Uniformity, primarily designed to secure outward conformity in the use of the Anglican Book of Common Prayer, was in effect a penal statute, as it punished all clerics who used any other service by deprivation and imprisonment, and everyone who refused to attend the Anglican service by a fine of twelve pence for each ommission. It should be remembered that the amount must be greatly multiplied to give their modern equivalent.

Coming to the legislation of the second period, there are two Acts directed against the Bull of Excommunication  (issued by the Pope against Henry VIII and Elizabeth).:

  • 13 Eliz. c.1, which, among other enactments, made it high treason to affirm that the queen ought not to enjoy the Crown, or to declare her to be a heretic or schismatic, and
  • 13 Eliz. c. 2, which made it high treason to put into effect any papal Bull of absolution, to absolve or reconcile any person to the Catholic Church, or to be so absolved or reconciled, or to procure or publish any papal Bull or writing whatsoever.

The penalties of Praemunire were enacted against all who brought into England or who gave to others Agnus Dei or articles blessed by the pope or by any one through faculties from him.

A third act, 13 Eliz. c. 3, which was designed to stop Catholics from taking refuge abroad, declared that any subject departing the realm without the queen’s licence, and not returning within six months, should forfeit the profits of his lands during life and all his goods and chattels. The third and most severe group of statutes begins with the “Act to retain the Queen’s Majesty’s subjects in their obedience” (23 Eliz. c. 1), passed in 1581. This made it high treason to reconcile anyone or to be reconciled to “the Romish religion”, prohibited Mass under penalty of a fine of two hundred marks and imprisonment for one year for the celebrant, and a fine of one hundred marks and the same imprisonment for those who heard the Mass. This act also increased the penalty for not attending the Anglican service to the sum of twenty pounds a month, or imprisonment till the fine be paid, or till the offender went to the Protestant Church. A further penalty of ten pounds a month was inflicted on anyone keeping a schoolmaster who did not attend the Protestant service. The schoolmaster himself was to be imprisoned for one year.<hardpoint=”ad-cathen-middle” categories=”4674472789+2853081454+1750546940″></hardpoint=”ad-cathen-middle”>

The climax of Elizabeth’s persecution was reached in 1585 by the “Act against Jesuits, Seminary priests and other such like disobedient persons” (27 Eliz. c. 2). This statute, under which most of the English martyrs suffered, made it high treason for any Jesuit or any seminary priest to be in England at all, and felony for any one to harbour or relieve them. The penalties of Praemunire were imposed on all who sent assistance to the seminaries abroad, and a fine of 100 pounds for each offence on those who sent their children overseas without the royal licence.

So far as priests were concerned, the effect of all this legislation may be summed up as follows: For any priest ordained before the accession of Elizabeth it was high treason after 1563 to maintain the authority of the pope for the second time, or to refuse the oath of supremacy for the second time; after 1571, to receive or use any Bull or form of reconciliation; after 1581, to absolve or reconcile anyone to the Church or to be absolved or reconciled. For seminary priests it was high treason to be in England at all after 1585. Under this statute, over 150 Catholics died on the scaffold between 1581 and 1603, exclusive of Erizabeth’s earlier victims.

The last of Elizabeth’s laws was the “Act for the better discovery of wicked and seditious persons terming themselves Catholics, but being rebellious and traitorous subjects” (35 Eliz. c. 2). Its effect was to prohibit all recusants from removing more than five miles from their place of abode, and to order all persons suspected of being Jesuits or seminary priests, and not answering satisfactorily, to be imprisoned till they did so. The hopes of the Catholics on the accession of James I were soon dispelled, and during his reign (1603-25) five very oppressive measures were added to the statute-book. In the first year of his reign there was passed the “Act for the due execution of the statute against Jesuits, seminary priests, etc.” (I Jac. 1, iv) by which all Elizabeth’s statutes were confirmed with additional aggravations. Thus personsgoing beyond seas to any Jesuit seminary were rendered incapable of purchasing or retaining any lands or goods in England; the penalty of 100 pounds on everyone sending a child or ward out of the realm, which had been enacted only for Elizabeth’s reign, was now made perpetual; and Catholic schoolmasters not holding a licence from the Anglican bishop of the diocese were fined forty shillings a day, as were their employers. One slight relief was obtained in the exemption of one-third of the estate of a convicted recusant from liabilities to penalties; but against this must be set the provision that retained the remaining two-thirds after the owner’s death till all his previous fines had been paid. Even then these two-thirds were only to be restored to the heir provided he was not himself a recusant.

The carefully arranged “discovery” of the Gunpowder Plot in 1605 was followed by two statutes of particularly savage character. These were “An Act for the better discovering and repressing of Popish Recusants” (3 Jac. I, iv) and “An Act to prevent and avoid dangers which may grow by Popish Recusants” (3. Jac. 1, v). The first of these two wicked laws enacted that all convicted recusants should communicate once a year in the Anglican church under penalties of 20 pounds for the first omission, 40 pounds for the second, and 60 pounds for the third. Moreover the king was to be allowed to refuse the penalty of 20 pounds per month for non-attendance at the Anglican church, and to take in its place all the personal property and two-thirds of the real property of the offender. But the main point of this Act was the new Oath of Allegiance which it prescribed, and which was subsequently condemned by the Holy See. Yet all who refused it were to be subjected to the penalties of Praemunire, except married women, who were to be imprisoned in the common jail. Finally, every householder of whatever religion was liable to a fine of 10 pounds a month for each guest or servant who failed to attend the Anglican church.

The second Act was even worse, and the Catholic historian Tierney justly says of it that it “exceeded in cruelty all that had hitherto been devised for the oppression of the devoted Catholics“. It prohibited recusants from remaining within ten miles of the city of London, a provision which it was impossible to carry out; or to remove more than five miles from their place of residence till they had obtained licence from four magistrates and the bishop of the diocese or lieutenant of the county. They were disabled from practising as lawyers, physicians, apothecaries; from holding office in any court or corporation; from holding commissions in the army or navy, or any office of emolument under the State; from discharging the duties of executors, administrators, or guardians. Any married woman who had not received the sacrament in the Anglican church for a year before her husband’s death forfeited two-thirds of her dower, two-thirds of her jointure, and was debarred from acting as executrix to her husband or claiming any part of his goods. Husbands and wives, if married otherwise than by a Protestant minister in a Protestant church, were each deprived of all interest in the lands or property of the other. They were fined 100 pounds for omitting to have each of their children baptised by the Protestant minister within a month of birth. All Catholics going or being sent beyond the seas without a special licence from the king or Privy Council were incapable of benefitting by gift, descent, or devise, till they returned and took the oath of allegiance; and in the meantime the property was to be held by the nearest Protestant heir. And, lastly, every convicted recusant was excommunicated from the Established Church, with the result that they were debarred from maintaining or defending any personal action or suit in the civil courts. Their houses were liable to be searched at any time, their arms and ammunition to be seized, and any books or furniture which were deemed superstitious to be destroyed.

As was the case with the faithful Catholics in Japan, so also in England for almost three centuries the Church in England consisted of only lay Catholic with bishops, archbishops, cardinals or contact with the Vatican Curia in Rome although a few heroic priests did slip into England, such a Saint Edmund Campion, but they were all sooner or later discovered and put to death.

The Church has entered into a period of time when almost certainly, if the present course of events continues into the next popes reign, the Mystical Church, the Church that lives in the heart and mind of Catholics who remain faithful to the Gospel and the Magisterium revealed in the Catechisim of the Catholic Church, will function not as an institutional Church such as exists now but rather as a Church made up of communities of believers, some with the benefit of priests and bishops and some without even those to minister to them.

I for one am certainly saddened by what is happening to the institutional Church, but I am consoled that even without a pope or the Vatican Curia, Our Lord Jesus Christ can keep his Church alive until either a reform of this revolution takes place or Our Lord comes again.

+Rene Henry Gracida

 

 

 

 

About abyssum

I am a retired Roman Catholic Bishop, Bishop Emeritus of Corpus Christi, Texas
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3 Responses to DO NOT GROW WEARY AND FAINT, REMAIN VIGILANT, PRAY AND LOVE JESUS CHRIST AND OTHERS AS HE TAUGHT US

  1. aabroadnz says:

    Your excellency, Our situation today, throughout the whole world, is radically different from the situations that you raise by way of comparison, in Japan and England. In those cases, the true Catholic Church was clearly visible elsewhere in the world, even though it had been eclipsed in those nations. Those who stayed faithful, while bereft of clergy and sacraments for the most part where they happened to live, knew that their co-religionists were praying for them in the rest of the world. Today, a non-Catholic “church” occupies most of the buildings and institutions that virtually all the world presumes to be the Catholic Church. For the faithful few today, we cannot look to the true church “outside” (except the Church Triumphant in Heaven). We can only cast around ourselves and look for those who remain faithful to the Church’s perennial teaching. and that does NOT include today’s Catechism and Canon Law, since both are infected with Modernist heresies. In my opinion the two biggest effects that this occupation of the church by non-Catholics and a non-Catholic Mass (the Novus Ordo is soooo similar to the Anglican worship service that the recusant Catholics in England who you, rightfully, revere, courageously chose to refuse to have anything to do with) are: firstly, the lack of graces received by the “faithful” (clearly evident by the lack of holiness among the faithful, as the statistics for such things as contraception, abortion, use of pornography, divorce, child abuse, fornication, etc, go to show – “Catholics” look virtually the same as the worldlings on these measures, whereas they shouldn’t); and secondly, the great stumbling block it raises in the way of evangelisation – a discussion of the four pillars of the church, explained through scripture and Tradition, leading to an understanding of the Catholic Church as being the true and only religion used to be very powerful for me – but now I must follow that with a curious disclaimer that I am inviting my friend to consider joining something other than the weird and disconcerting institution that they see in the media.
    Yet I agree that there is hope: Our Lord promised us that the church would not be extinguished; and converts still find their way into the true Church (I was an example myself, in 2008).
    But it serves no good purpose to pretend that the Magisterium of the true church resides in the Catechism. It is a major weapon of the Modernists, just like the Novus Ordo Liturgy. We must call them out for what they are: toxic elements which should be avoided like the plague, for the good of our souls.
    It is not enough to wring our hands and hope for better days; we have to act – and tell and promote the truth.
    I respect and praise what you have done so far, you are being much more courageous than many others. But, like the citizens in “The Emperors New Clothes”, you are still following behind the charlatans and telling us that the New Catechism, Canon Law, and Liturgy are OK. Rather, I beg you to shout, as per the little boy, that the Emperor has no clothes – i.e., the Modernist Church is as thoroughly Protestant as the Church of England was and, like the English Martyrs, we should have nothing to do with it.
    THEN people could start to see where the faithful should go…
    There are a few bishops in the world (a very few) who have made this stand. Will you join them?

  2. hellenback7 says:

    As I believe the Holy Spirit has guided me through prayer to the sme conclusion, it is a consolation that a Bishop of The Church states so clearly what he believes to be the best way to remain at Peace in Christ as we move forward during these turbulent and often scandalous times.

    For now at least, I believe most Catholics still have valid Sacraments to sustain them along with our prayer, The Bible, The Precepts and The Catechism.

  3. V Schraa says:

    Perfectly stated, defended and with true encouragement. Thank you Your Excellency. VS

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