Category Archives: conservatives

Its worse than you think

By Augustinus

Acolytes of Pope Francis apparently do not believe that the church is in crisis. Like the Pope himself they apparently believe that further accommodations to fallen humankind and the world are in order all in the name of mercy, inclusion and understanding. The acolytes of Pope Francis tend to be better Christians than the opponents of Pope Francis at least in one respect: they are more forgiving of anyone who is accorded the sacred status of “victim”. If on the other hand a group or individual is given the label rigid” or conservative or reactionary, well then no quarter is given, nor mercy, nor understanding, nor inclusion. The opponents of Pope Francis, however, are little better. They at least see that the church is in severe crisis but they erroneously attribute the crisis to the legacy of Vatican II or to the long term effects of the reformation and the gradual adoption of the modernist heresy by western elites and then by most of the laity in the church.

Just as the French revolution ushered in the political vocabulary of progressive and reactionary, liberal vs conservative, right and left so too factions in the church battle it out interminably over all kinds of issues but always within the terms of the debate set originally at the French revolution….and thus the opposing sides never settle anything and never get anywhere.

To truly understand the seriousness of the crisis the church finds itself in at the present moment one needs to let go of seeing the world in terms of right and left, liberal and conservative, progressive and reactionary etc and instead see the world and the church as it really is.

If we turn our backs on the interminable and petty name calling between the liberals and the conservatives in the church we can then engage seriously with the theology of the church.  Due to the nature of their calling theologians can sometimes see history and the church in a clearer light than can the clergy and laity who are trapped in a historical moment. Real theologians are however few and far between especially in the modern era. They tend to want to follow the herd of academics to curry favor with the zeitgest and the state and other idols. Nevertheless, they have to contend with the eternal truths of the creed and that tend to force them to keep one foot in reality whenever considering the church in the world and the present historical moment.

When we look at the theological work in ecclesiology or the theory of the church in the world we of course find a lot of garbage and nonsense but we also find true gems that allow us to gauge the current crisis of the church and what to do about it.

The church is composed of several pillars: the Petrine pillar composes the papacy and magisterium and is suppose to safeguard basic dogmatic residua of the tradition. The Pauline pillar safeguards  and promotes the work of spirit in upbuilding of the body of Christ. The Jamesian pillar safeguards the dogma of the sacrifice of Christ and builds up the priesthood, the clergy and bishops. The Johannine pillar safeguards mystical and dogmatic traditions around christology, the Eucharist and the mystical marriage of Christ and Church. The Thomasian tradition safeguards the secret christian gnosis and the marriage of reason and faith that is the essence of christianity. The  Lazarus tradition safeguards traditions around easter and the resurrection. And finally the Marian tradition safeguards the purity of the church and works against heresy –the giving birth of monsters.

In the past history of the church you might have one or tow of these pillars not given due attention. For example while the era of the church fathers gave due weight to the petrine, pauline, jamesian, johannine and marian pillars the thomasian and lazaran traditions were not given due weight. In the middle ages the pauline, johannine and lazaran pillars were neglected. During the reformation the pauline tradition was emphasized by the protestant sects to the neglect of all other traditions/pillars. In the modern era ALL pillars are under severe attack.

Bergoglio the “Leftist World Leader”!

Brought to you by Allan Gillis from the venerable Rorate Caeli

Op-Ed: “With Democrats’ loss in the US, Francis becomes the leader of the Global Left.”

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After Trump’s victory, has Pope Francis become the leader of the international left?

Roberto de Mattei

Corrispondenza Romana
November 11, 2016
The Cardinal Secretary of State, Parolin sent the Holy See’s congratulations to Donald Trump, expressing its hopes that the new president would work in service to his country and for peace in the world. Also Joseph Kurtz, Archbishop of Louisville and President of the U.S. Bishop’s Conference, congratulated the newly-elected President, urging him to govern for the common good of all citizens. The position of the Vatican diplomacy appears to be correcting, or tempering, that of Pope Francis, who has never concealed his intolerance with the candidate for the American presidency.

On his return flight from Mexico on February 18th of this year, in commenting Trump’s plan to build a wall between the United States and Mexico in order to slow down the migratory surge the Pope had said that “a person who thinks only of building walls and not bridges, is not a Christian.” On another return flight, of October 2nd from Baku to Rome, to those who asked what candidate he favoured, he didn’t commit himself. Yet, no matter how strong the reservations towards Trump can be, for a Catholic it would be difficult to imagine a position of equidistance between him and Hilary Clinton, who had officially inserted a massive implementation of abortion and the LGBT agenda into her programme. Unless self-defence against the migratory invasion is considered a graver sin than the legalization of abortion and so-called homosexual marriage.
Over and above any moral judgment on such questions, the basic problem that divides the Vatican and the new American presidency is of a political order. The theme of immigration in fact, from the very beginning of this pontificate – the basic cornerstone of Bergoglian politics – constitutes nonetheless a keystone also in Donald Trump’s programme. On this point Francis’ vision and the President of the United States’ are in opposition. “A nation without borders is not a nation, just as a country without laws is not an nation” Trump affirms, whereas for Pope Francis, an unlimited welcome to immigrants is almost a theological “locus”. If Trump goes ahead with his plan, he will not only pull the brakes on the reigning multiculturalism in his country since the Kennedy era, but he will also give inevitable impetus to those parties on the right and “those who identify with it”, which in the upcoming weeks and months, will go to elections in Austria, Holland, France and Germany.
For his part, after Clinton’s defeat, Francesco now remains the only point of reference for the international left, [now] lacking a leader. On November 5th at the conclusion of the Third World Meeting of the so-called “Popular Movements” in the Vatican, in the presence of revolutionary agitators from the five continents, Pope Francis turned to them saying: “I make your cry mine”. But the cry of protest, that is raised by the movements gathered in Paul VI’s audience hall, is, unfortunately, characterized by ideological fanaticism and incitement to violence.
The trend line is clear. In his last trip to South America, Francis expressed his sympathy for the Bolivian and Ecuadorian Presidents, and on October 24th received in private audience in the Vatican, the Venezuelan President, Nicolas Maduro Moros, also of the extreme left, to whom he guaranteed his support. No word of approval or pleasure came instead from the Vatican for the extraordinary gesture by the Peruvian President, Pedro Paplo Kuczynski, who, on October 21st, before members of the Chamber and Senate, consecrated his country to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
How fitting it would be, if in staying out of politics, the Pope and Bishops of the world would unite their efforts in religious acts of this type, beginning with the long-awaited consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, on the occasion of the 2017 Fatima centenary, which coincides with the evil one of the October Bolshevik Revolution.
Translation: Francesca Romana

Maybe The Pilot isn’t a Pirate after all…

Brought to you by Allan Gillis

This in today’s Boston Pilot:

A Catholic News Service story (CNS)

Election outcome expected to influence religious freedom in health care

By Dennis Sadowski
Posted: 11/3/2016

Dr. Anne Nolte, right, a family physician with the National Gianna Center for Women’s Health and Fertility in New York, is pictured with a patient in 2009. A pair of Catholic physicians argue that changes in the way health care is paid for and stronger relationships between doctors and their patients will do more to improve people’s health and uphold the sanctity of life than bureaucratic government-run programs and expensive insurance policies. (CNS photo/Gregory A. Shemitz)


WASHINGTON (CNS) — A pair of Catholic physicians argue that changes in the way health care is paid for and stronger relationships between doctors and their patients will do more to improve people’s health and uphold the sanctity of life than bureaucratic government-run programs and expensive insurance policies.

Dr. Marguerite Duane, adjunct associate professor of family medicine at Georgetown University, and Dr. Lester Ruppersberger, president of the Catholic Medical Association, also maintain that control over health care must be in the hands of patients and their families rather than any bureaucracy.

Both physicians offered their views during an hourlong discussion Nov. 2 in Washington sponsored by Christ Medicus Foundation at the Catholic Information Center called “The Changing Face of Health Care and the 2016 Election.”

The program took place just days ahead of the Nov. 8 election. Each of the four participants said that the next presidential administration and the new Congress will influence how the U.S. health care system evolves.

The panelists expressed concern over the erosion of conscience protections for hospitals and health care workers and the rights of individuals to choose a doctor who aligns with their religious beliefs and to purchase insurance without paying for health services that they morally oppose.

“People have to realize that Americans of all stripes, regardless of their religious affiliation, that we are losing our religious freedom … at amazing speed,” said Louis Brown, foundation director.

“We’re seeing with the increased power of the executive, of the White House and regulatory agencies that a lot of things can be done or undone without congressional action, and there’s a lot of danger,” Brown said.

He said the new Congress is expected to strengthen the Weldon Amendment, a federal law enacted in 2005 to protect the conscience rights of institutions and individuals, and to clarify some aspects of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

Then there’s the makeup of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Brown said observers expect at least three, and perhaps four, justices will be appointed by the next president and they likely will play a key role in health care services as lawsuits make their way through appeals.

The foundation-led discussion stemmed in part from its CURO health care ministry, a health sharing program that bills itself as an alternative to traditional health insurance. It enables people to pay for medical expenses without being part of an insurance plan they feel compromises their religious beliefs.

The panelists covered several topics, with the physicians expressing concern for increasingly restrictive regulations emerging from the Affordable Care Act that serve to marginalize the conscience of health care workers, Catholic hospitals and patients.

A fourth panelist, Matt Bowman, senior counsel at the Alliance Defending Freedom, outlined some of the lawsuits nationwide filed on discrimination grounds challenging the rights of hospitals and health care professionals to deny to offer care that violates their religious beliefs.

Citing her experience treating patients at the Spanish Catholic Center in the Archdiocese of Washington, Duane said she has learned that health care does not have to be expensive or guided by a checklist of actions in order to meet reimbursement guidelines or government mandates.

“Much of our health care costs does not actually pay for health care,” Duane told the forum. “It covers the administration of the bureaucracy that continues to build and expand and will only hasten and worsen with the Affordable Care Act. All of this money we are putting into this health care system is not helping people get healthier. It’s helping government to grow bigger. It’s helping government to have greater control in our lives and what we do.”

The ACA is facing new challenges after the Department of Health and Human Services announced in October that 2017 premiums for mid-level health plans will increase by an average of 25 percent and that consumers in some states will find fewer insurance companies offering coverage.

Duane called for greater use of direct primary care, an alternative care model in which a trusting relationship between patient and doctor is encouraged and fee-for-service incentives are replaced with a flat monthly fee. She said direct primary care leads to better outcomes because people feel connected to their doctor.

In cooperation with another physician, Duane has formed a direct primary care practice in which basic care is delivered at homes or elsewhere. She said the monthly cost is $79 for individuals and $250 for families.

Comprehensive health insurance instead, Duane explained, can be used for more costly procedures and because it would be used less often premiums could be lower. She compared such a system of comprehensive health insurance to automobile insurance, which is accessed only in cases of serious damage to a vehicle.

Ruppersberger said the Catholic Medical Association has long recognized the need for health care delivery reform. He pointed to the Catholic Medical Association’s 2004 white paper, “Health Care in America: A Catholic Proposal for Renewal,” which offered specific policy proposals based on Catholic moral and social teaching.

The document, he explained, pointed to a “crisis” in the American health care that stems from the lack of health insurance coverage millions of Americans had in 2004 and continue to have today despite the ACA.

“The crisis in American health care is more than a crisis of the insured and uninsured,” Ruppersberger said. “It is a crisis afflicting the patient-physician relationship, which has been eroded by factors that include financing health care, but that are more properly understood as having their roots in the loss of a common understanding, within and without the medical profession, of the sanctity and inviolability of each human life and the dignity of the person.”

The Catholic Church, he continued, can provide the needed guidance to “enact meaningful health care policies that uphold the sanctity of life from conception to natural death, as well as the common good, and to do so in a financially sustainable fashion,” he said.

Acknowledging that the document must be updated to reflect changes in the health sector since then, Ruppersberger noted that any recommendations the Catholic Medical Association offers will conform with Catholic social and moral teaching.

“The challenge is to create new incentives that drive the power and responsibility for purchasing health insurance away from specific employers and government bureaucracies and toward the individual worker and family. Changes in public policy are needed to foster a renewed climate in which individuals and families are free to make decision about their health care and its source based upon conscience,” he said.

Bowman cited cases in which religiously affiliated medical facilities and physicians are defending their right not to refer a woman for an abortion elsewhere when the procedure is not offered at their own facilities. He also noted a Vermont case in which doctors are required to tell a terminally ill patient about all treatment options available, including physician-assisted suicide.

“This is a serious issue about whether health care professionals or health care facilities will be able to practice medicine consistent with their beliefs,” Bowman said of the lawsuits pending nationwide. “But it’s also an issue about whether their patients will be able to choose them. There are many women who want the freedom to choose a doctor to deliver their baby and their doctor also does not kill babies.”

*********************************************************

Perhaps I’m too hard on The Pilot.  With all that I have going on personally, I NEED these distractions!

I Found This Absolutely Fascinating!

I found this the other day and wanted to think more about it before posting it. – The funny thing is; I am a very astringent opponent of Frankie-The-Hippie-Pope and also, I am very supportive of and a great admirer of Vladimir Putin. I had never put the two thoughts together on the same mental page! Check this out:

Catholics who are anti-Francis but love Putin

from The Vatican Insider

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giacomo galeazzi – andrea tornielli

rome

The glue that holds them together is their aversion towards Francis. The world of Francis dissenters ranges from Lefebvrians who have decided to “wait for a traditional Pope” before renewing their communion with Rome, to catholic regionalists who compare Francis to his predecessor Ratzinger and promote the campaign “Benedict is my Pope”.

Then there are the ultra-conservatives of Fondazione Lepanto – a foundation that aims to protect the principles and institutions of the Christian civilization – and websites that share sedevacantist positions, adamant that the Catholic writer Antonio Socci was right to argue that Bergoglio’s election is invalid, simply because a vote was cancelled without a scrutiny in the march 2013 Conclave. This was because one of the cardinals mistakenly placed an extra ballot in the ballot box. The voting resumed immediately to wipe away any doubts and without any of the cardinal electors raising any objections. Prelates and traditionalist intellectuals have signed appeals or protested against the Argentinian Pope’s open pastoral attitude with regard to communion for remarried divorcees and dialogue with the Chinese government.
Opposition to the Pope unites people and groups that are very different among them: soft criticism is expressed by online newspaper La Bussola Quotidiana and monthly newspaper Il Timone, directed by Riccardo Cascioli. The Argentinian Pope is also reproached almost on a daily basis by L’Espresso’s former Vatican affairs journalist Sandro Magister. Then there are the revelatory and mocking comments made by Maria Guarini in Italian blog Chiesa e Postconcilio and the harsher criticisms made by ultra-traditionalist and sedevacantist groups, those who believe there has not been a worthy Pope since Pius XII. Italian newspaper La Stampa visited the places and protagonists of this opposition to Francis which is contained in terms of numbers but widespread on the web. Those behind this opposition, use the Internet and private meetings between clerics, combining frontal and public attacks with more articulate strategies. Alessandro Gnocchi, who writes for the Riscossa Cristiana and Unavox websites, is on the frontline of web criticism against the Pope: “Bergoglio is systematically surrendering the Church to the world, the Church is becoming worldly. His pontificate is based on the brutal handling of power. Never has the faith been so debased.”

Opposition headquarters
Fondazione Lepanto, located between the paleochristian walls of St. Balbina Basilica on the Aventine Hill is one of the cultural power houses of anti-Francis sentiment. The foundation’s books combined with the Corrispondenza Romana news agency and the meetings held in the sitting room on the first floor, make it one of the headquarters of the anti-Bergoglio front. “The Church is going through one the biggest moments of chaos in its history and the Pope is one of the causes of this,” says historian and President of Fondazione Lepanto, Roberto De Mattei. This chaos is above all to dow itht he Pope’s magisterium. Francis is not the solution but part of the problem.” Opposition, De Mattei added, “is not just being expressed by these so-called traditionalist circles extends to bishops and theologians who were trained according to the Ratzinger and Wojtyla schools of thought.”

De Mattei prefers to refer to it as “resistance” rather than “dissent”. This resistance was recently expressed by 45 Catholic theologians and philosophers who criticized the apostolic exhortation “Amoris Laetitia” and by 80 figures – who gradually turned into several thousand – including Catholic cardinals, bishops and theologians, who made a declaration of “loyalty to the unchanging magisterium of the Church”. One of the hotbeds of resistance, the historian underlined, “is the John Paul II Institute for the family, whose heads were recently removed by Bergoglio”. Traditionalists are also targeting Francis for the part his migration policy is playing in destabilizing Europe and obliterating western civilization.

Political-theological opposition
The attack against Francis is global. “There is a strong geopolitical element in the circles that oppose Francis,” observes Agostino Giovagnoli, Professor of Contemporary History at the Università Cattolica  and expert on dialogue with China. They are accusing Bergoglio of not proclaiming the truths of the faith with sufficient vigour but in reality they are blaming him for not defending the West’s primacy. This opposition has political motivations that are masked by theological and ecclesial questions”. China is an example of this. “There is an alliance between Honk Kong circles, sectors within the US and Europe’s right-wing: they are accusing Francis of putting the goal of uniting the Church in China before the defense of religious freedom,” he continues. Such positions are often expressed by Catholic news agency Asianews. These critics say the Pope should affirm religious freedom as a political argument against Beijing instead of seeking dialogue through diplomatic means”.

Opposition – which also finds backing in the Curia –is also being voiced by clerics with Vatican connections, such as the liturgist and theologian Fr. Nicola Bux, a consultant to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and the Office of Liturgical Celebrations. “Today, there are quite a few lay people, priests and bishops are asking themselves where we are headed,” he tells La Stampa. In the Church, it has always been possible to express one’s  opposition to ecclesiastical authorities, even the Pope. Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini notoriously put his opposition to the reigining Pope in writing too but John Paul II never removed him from his post as Archbishop of Milan, nor did he consider him a conspirator.” The Pope’s job, Bux continued, is “to safeguard ecclesial communion, not to favour division and rivalry, siding with progressives against the conservatives”. “If a Pope upheld a heterodox doctrine, cardinals in Rome could declare his fall  from office”. In a rippling crescendo, researcher Flavio Cuniberto – who has authored a book criticising the Pope’s social magisterium, is a scholar of René Guenon and of traditionalism close to the esoteric right – recently launched a protest in Italian newspaper Il Giornale. He stated that “Bergoglio has not updated Catholic doctrine, he’s destroyed it  and acts as though he is a Catholic but is in fact not: the distorted idea of poverty elevates old pauperism to the dogmatic sphere.” The Pope praises recycling and thus “the virtues of the good late-modern consumer become the new evangelical virtues”.

Theories about the two Popes
On his official Facebook page, Antonio Socci claims that Benedict XVI did not really want to resign but still considers himself Pope and wants in some way to share the “Petrine ministry” with his successor. Ratzinger himself has denied this interpretation outright on more than one occasion between February 2014 and the recent interview-length book “Final Conversations”, confirming that his resignation is completely valid and publicly demonstrating his obedience to Francis. The theory was fueled by the interpretation drawn from some words pronounced last may by the Prefect of the Papal Household and Benedict XVI’s secretary, Archbishop Georg Ganswein. During a book presentation, Fr. Georg stated: “There are not two Popes therefore but an extended ministry, with an active member and a contemplative member.” Socci published Bergoglio and Ratzinger’s photos next to each other with the caption: “Which of the two?” He went on to write: “One contrasts love and the truth (Bergoglio), while another sees them united in God (Benedict XVI)”.

Among the many comments to these remarks, Paolo Soranno wrote: “Francis I seems to be serving God Rainbow (who does not impose religious and moral principles) and not the Catholic God.” The opposition intensifies on the web, with people letting all fury loose protected by their computer screen, as was apparent from some comments beneath the articles posted on social networks. The “messainitaliano” website, which promotes the old liturgy but also publishes vitriolic comments on the Pope, speaks about the “tedious ideological monotony of the current pontificate”. On the web, one comes across comments about the Church eventually dissolving into some kind of a UN of religions with a touch of Greenpeace and a hint of a trades union organization, given that “today, moral sins are downgraded and Bergoglio established social (or socialist) sins as well”. Maria Guarini’s ultra-traditionalist blog “Chiesa e Postconcilio” publishes titles such as: “If the next Pope is Bergoglian, the Vatican will become a Cathomasonic branch”. The opposition comes from the more conservative side of the spectrum but also finds a voice among some disappointed ultra-progressives.

Such is the case of the Ambroasian priest Fr. Giorgio De Capitani, who relentlessly attacks Francis from the left and does not therefore be included in the groups described so far. He tears the pontificate to pieces and feeds it to the wolves. “How many useless and obvious words. Peace, justice and goodness. The Pope is really getting on our nerved with all these tear-jerking words and gestures. Francis is a victim of his own consensus and all he is doing is creating illusions, pulling the wool over our eyes, steals some applause and fills some nincompoop journalists who know nothing of the faith, with rapture”. Journalist Giuseppe Rusconi reflected: “is our Shepherd really above all “ours”  or is he not showing that he favours the indistinct global flock, thus being perceived by non-Catholic public opinion as a leader who responds to the wishes of contemporary society? Is he doing it as part of a Jesuit strategy or out of personal choice? And when the shepherd returns to the pen, how many sheep will be bring with him? And how many of those lost will he find?” This mixed opposition has identified some bishops and cardinals as reference points. On his blog, Magister put Guinean cardinal Robert Sarah forward as a papal candidate. Sarah is currently Francis’ liturgy minister and is much loved by conservatives and traditionalists who often quote him on their websites and publications.

Risk of a schism?
Among those considered pole stars, are first and foremost US cardinal Raymond Leo Burke, patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta and the Auxiliary Bishop of Astana, Athanasius Schneider. But beyond the amplified stories present on the web, there do not seem to be any further schisms on the horizon, after Bishop Marcel Lefebvre’s in 1988. Sociologist Massimo Introvigne is adamant about this: “There are more than 5000 Catholic bishops in the world, only about ten of them are active in their opposition, many of whom are retired, which shows that it is not substantial.”

Introvigne claims that this opposition “is present both on the web and in real life and is overestimated: there are dissidents who write comments on social networks using four or five different pseudonyms, to give the impression there are many of them”. According to the sociologist, the movement “is not successful because it is not united. There are at least three different kinds of opposition.: the political opposition of American foundations, the opposition of Marine Le Pen and Matteo Salvini who are not particularly interested in liturgical or moral issues – they often do not even go to church – but in immigration and the Pope’s critiques against turbo-capitalism. Then there is the opposition expressed by those who feel a nostalgia for Benedict XVI but do not contest Vatican II. And there is the radical opposition of the Society of St. Pius X or the likes of De Mattei and Gnocchi. This form of opposition rejects the Council and everything that came after it. Despite support from the odd Church figure, the contradictions between the three standpoints are destined to explode and a common front has no chance of lasting.” Introvigne pointed out a surprising trait that many of these circles share: “It is the mythical idealization of Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is presented as a “good” leader in contrast to the “bad” leader, the Pope, because of his stance on homosexual people, Muslims and immigrants. Russian foundations that have strong ties with Putin co-operate with the anti-Francis opposition.

Another One Bites The Dust!

By Allan Gillis

I just realized the slight of hand here in this document!

Here is the letter dated July 12th from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Committee on Divine Worship as it addresses the issue of celebrating Mass ad orientem. The Most Rev. Arthur J. Serratelli, Chairman, clarifies that there will be no expected changes to the General Instruction of the Roman Missal, but points out existing rubrics in “the Order of Mass which reflect the real possibility that the celebrant might be facing away from the assembly.”       Ya think?

check this out:

July 12, 2016       Your Eminence / Your Excellency:

As you are no doubt aware, some comments made at a London talk on July 7 by His Eminence Cardinal Robert Sarah, the Prefect of the Vatican’s Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, quickly became the source of much speculation and debate concerning the proper orientation of the priest celebrant in relation to the assembly during the celebration of the Eucharist in the Ordinary Form. [Did Sarah step in it or what?!]  In the whirlwind of media attention which has followed, there has been no small amount of confusion as to whether his remarks, in which he encouraged bishops and priests to celebrate Mass ad orientem when feasible beginning on the first Sunday of Advent of this year, constitute an actual change to the rubrics of the liturgy. In a statement released on Monday, July 11, Fr. Federico Lombardi, the outgoing Director of the Holy See Press Office, has clarified on behalf of the Holy See that no liturgical directives concerning the orientation of the priest in respect to the assembly at Mass were to be anticipated before Advent of this year. As a result, no changes to the General Instruction of the Roman Missal are expected at this time, nor is there a new mandate for the celebrant to face away from the assembly. As a final comment, n. 299 of the General Instruction of the Roman Missal does show a preference for the celebrant’s facing the people “whenever possible” in the placement and orientation of the altar. That configuration will most likely continue to be the norm at most parishes, [here’s the kicker! – wait for it…] as it has been for decades now. [Did you get that?]  However, the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments has clarified on earlier occasions that this does not prohibit the celebration of the Eucharist in the Ordinary Form ad orientem. In fact, there are rubrics in the Order of Mass which reflect the real possibility that the celebrant might be facing away from the assembly (see for example n. 29 before the Prayer over the Offerings: “Standing in the middle of the altar, facing the people, extending then joining his hands, he says …”). Although permitted, the decision whether or not to preside ad orientem should take into consideration the physical configuration of the altar [why? …they didn’t have the same consideration back in 1970!] and sanctuary space, and, most especially, the pastoral welfare of the faith community [I HATE that term!] being served. Such an important decision should always be made with the supervision and guidance of the local bishop.

Fraternally yours in Christ, Most Rev. Arthur J. Serratelli Chairman

Did you see that?    …the defensive swipe:  “as it has been for decades now”    –    THEY CERTAINLY DIDN’T HAVE THAT SAME CONSIDERATION WHEN THEY TRAMPLED, BURNED, CUT AWAY AND DEMOLISHED OUR LITURGY AND SACRED ALTARS BACK IN THEIR HAYDAY!!!   …AND OUR LITURGY HAD SERVED US WELL FOR CENTURIES!   AT LEAST 17 CENTURIES!     I say kak to you Fr. Seratelli!

I sense a double-standard here.  I also wouldn’t be surprised if they find Cardinal Sarah in the trunk of a Cadillac somewhere…   or at least banished to the job of “Patron of the Sovereign Military Order of The Knights Who Say Ni”.

An Answer From One of Longenecker’s Victims

here is a piece from his blog  Vox Cantoris:

Jesuits want to talk about “bullying.” Well, shall we?

Following up on the Reverend Father Dwight Longenecker’s recent Crux screed, we now have the orthodox Jesuitical publication editors at America Magazine entering into the fray.  Let’s give credit where it is due. Our Jesuitical Fathers have generously restrained themselves from the disgraceful direct hyperbole and insult more commonly associated with commentary on Bloggers from either from the Reverends Longenecker or Rosica. Kudos to our Jesuit friends at America, for their “charity,” attempted, that is, until you get to the heart of the matter.  Near the end of the first paragraph, they use the word “bullying.” An interesting word and one that has become popular in some circles.  Shall we talk about bullying?

Taliban Catholics

Doing the work of Satan

worshippers of false gods.”

Frivolous and vexatious lawsuits!

Who paid his legal bill? I had to pay mine! That was money that could have gone as extra mortgage payments or retirement savings or renovations or a trip with my wife. You bet I’m still peeved about that! We can go on; I can go on. I have specific examples of other bullying and attempted intimidation even to the point of threatening my livelihood from an “unidentified cleric.”  Another, was an attempt to intimidate priests to have me “fired” from Cantor positions by mounting a whisper campaign that I am “making the Pope look bad.” One actually suggesting I shut the blog down as a sign of “good-will.” In January and February 2015, there were at least three occurrences by an anonymous person or persons to directly interfere with my livelihood and my work — my career and my vocation in sacred music, and actual attempts to interfere in my employment on more than one occasion!  Yes, you read that correctly.  There have been attempts by some to silence me for years. They are not very smart, they have not figured out that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. They will not silence this blogger. Bullying? Intimidation? Threatening? Coercion?  I have known it directly, including the physical battery, assault and mental abuse as a 13 year old boy from certain sons of St. Basil’s and their “Congregation.” I survived that, there is nothing they can throw at me now. Bullying, you say? You filthy Jesuit swine! You “whitewashed sepulchres” with your intellectual pride. You “brood of vipers” who have betrayed your holy founder and His Lord and ours! You write of bullying? Oh, there is plenty and it is all from within the Catholic Church and from men who have no business in the priesthood. Effeminates, leaches, malefactors, prideful, arrogant, and faithless, feckless men who have disgraced the Bride of Christ, men who hide behind their clerical garb as some great oracles of holy wisdom. Bullies all right, but it’s not the bloggers.  What these men are revealing is that blogs punch above their weight and these men are running scared. They are afraid because they know that we are on to them and that they can no longer do their work without it being called out into the light. They know that when this Pope is dead; they will be dead with him. They have no progeny. They have no growth. Their time is short and we all know it and so do they.
We’re on to them and we’re not letting them go. In a recent talk in Rome given at the Voice of the Family conference, Raymond Cardinal Burke had this to say about the current situation in the Church:

“I think of so many faithful who express to me their profound concerns for the Church in the present time, when there seems to be so much confusion about fundamental dogmatic and moral truths. In responding to their concerns, I urge them to deepen their understanding of the constant teaching and discipline of the Church and to make their voices heard, so that the shepherds of the flock may understand the urgent need to announce again with clarity and courage the truths of the faith and to apply again with charity and firmness the discipline needed to safeguard the same truths.” “Make their voices heard,” said the Cardinal!  In a blog post on May 30, Father Hunwicke stated with clarity that:

“Vatican I made clear that ex cathedra pronouncements of the Roman Pontiff are infallible and irreformable ex sese, non autem ex consensu Ecclesiae. This implies that pronouncements not ex cathedra are or may be reformable by the reception or non-reception of the Church.” Read that again, “reformable by the reception or non-reception of the Church!” Mark my words friends and enemies alike. This mockery, Amoris Laetitia and much more that may come from this papacy will all be undone. It will be undone and declared anathema by a future holy pope. He will correct the ambiguities in the documents of Vatican II, he will condemn the errors and heresies devised by those who manipulated it, he will restore the sacred liturgy and he will teach with clarity and truth. He will preach that mercy and justice are linked; that truth is not relative and that Christ never changes. That pope, I believe, is living today. I only pray that I may be granted the grace to see that papacy, and rejoice in it. Catholics must stop ascribing to Francis, or any Pope for that matter, that which he does not have. Stop giving credence to Protestant bigotry about papal infallibility, that we worship the man and everything he says. Stop committing papolatry as if the passing of gas scented with frankincense somehow signifies new revelation.  Which magazine said just the other day in a Tweet, “The Church of Pope Francis“? If you think this writer will ever bow to worship at the Church of Pope Francis, or the Church of Benedict or any other Pope for that matter, you can go straight to where that idolatry will get you. It is not the “Church of Pope Francis!” It is the Church of Jesus Christ, Catholic! This Pope is His Vicar, His servant and ours. He is not a god. He is not infallible when he farts frankincense. He is not infallible with what he says in his daily homilies unless he states infallible teachings already revealed.  These priests who use such phrases as “radical traditionalist” whatever the heck that means are manipulating and insulting. As a convert, this next statement wouldn’t apply to Longenecker, but it would certainly to Rosica; “What faith did his parents or grandparents practice?” Were they “radical traditionalists?”  or were they just, “Catholics!” If Fathers Rosica and Longenecker defend their remarks with some kind of historicism, then that is an admission that there is a pre and post Vatican II Church – that the old one is dead and this new one is better, more merciful, more just and that all that came before was wrong. Bovine excrement! There are only “Catholics.”  The words of Robert DePlante come to mind: What Catholics once were, we are. If we are wrong, then Catholics through the ages have been wrong. We are what you once were. We believe what you once believed. We worship as you once worshipped. If we are wrong now, you were wrong then. If you were right then, we are right now.

There are no Taliban Catholics, radical traditionalist, rad-trads, mad-trads and other such scandalous epithets used by Rosica, Longenecker, Shea, Armstrong and others. They sit there chastising bloggers and accuse us of doing exactly what they do. You are either a Catholic or you’re a heretic. There is no grey.

Our parents and our grandparents did not have the knowledge and tools we have in order to stand up and protect the Faith and the Church. If they did, we would most certainly not be in the position we are in today. They did not read encyclicals or exhortations and they never thought to read the Council documents.  They trusted the priests and bishops, and what did it get them?

Their sons sodomised.

Their daughters molested.

The Holy Mass, debased and disgraced and often rendered illicit if not outright, invalid.

Our Lord insulted.

Altars smashed.

Communion rails broken up.

Artwork and their patrimony whitewashed.

Scandals.

The faith in ruins.

For fifty years, Catholics have been poked like a bear in a cage. What do you expect? That they are going to sit and take it? Poke someone long enough and you can be sure, the bear is going to bite back.

You can say turn the other cheek, but that is personal. We are fighting for Christ and His Church, our patrimony, our families and our culture and there will be no turning of any cheeks.

And don’t think we’re ever going away.

The attack on traditionalist bloggers

By Augustinus

The usually sensible Fr Longenecker has a piece over at Crux http://www.cruxnow.com/church/2016/05/27/radical-catholic-blogs-may-be-a-cesspool-but-saying-so-wont-help/ on the scandal involving a Fr Rosica who began to sue a traditionalist blogger Vox Cantoris http://voxcantor.blogspot.ca/  last year. Rosica claimed that this blogger practiced character assassination and was filled with too much venom and hatred. It is not clear what Fr Rosica was suing about because you cannot sue someone for being full of hatred. Anyway the usually sensible Fr Llongenecker wrote a piece yesterday over at Crux arguing that suing traditionalist bloggers would do no good as they ‘will remain a cesspool of hate and venom’. I would have thought that  the usually sensible Father would have denounced the practice of suing fellow Catholic bloggers, traditionalist or otherwise as being immoral in itself unless there was a case for something like libel. But Longenecker instead more or less endorsed the view that traditionalist bloggers were filled with hate and were simply spilling bile. I am amazed someone as sensible as Longenecker can think this about people who dedicate their lives to fighting for the Church! When I review the traditionalist blogs mentioned in his piece I do see a lot of venom and some crazy stuff but no more than I see in the mainstream catholic bogs I visit. There is hatred, venom, shrill wild claims, nonsense, and character assasination all over the Catholic blogosphere.–both in mainstream Vatican II Catholics and among traditionalists….though I have to say that the only heresies I see are promoted by Vatican II Catholics not the traditionalists. I do not see the traditionalists claiming that all religions are equally true and that there is salvation outside the catholic church but I have seen that argued in many mainstream catholic blogs.   Among the blogs that Longenecker dissed was ipeter5….Now take a look at who writes for that blog

Contributors

Obviously these are good, smart, competent, accomplished people all of whom are orthodox Catholics and all of whom are in good standing with the Church. Instead of threatening to sue them we should be cheering them on even when we do not agree with some of the things they say. When they say crazy stuff we should critique it just as we do when non-traditionalist bloggers do so. In Fr Longenecker’s account of the Rosica affair, Rosica dropped the suit against Vox Cantoris when Michael Voris created bad publicity over the whole thing but in my reading of the affair Rosica dropped the suit when figures within the Church hierarchy commented in the press that church figures should NOT be attempting to silence militant bloggers.

May I recommend to my fellow Catholic bloggers, traditionalists and mainstream alike, the model we have adopted here at saveourcatholicchurch? We publish both traditionalist views and mainstream Vatican II, pro Pope Francis views and everything in between. I myself have written pieces that many consider traditionalist and other pieces in praise of Pope Francis (for his encyclical on climate change for example).  We cannot arrive at the truth without talking to one another, without conflict and debate. Error has no rights it is true but we first need to decide where the error lies in our Church today and that can only be decided via prayer, open debate and fasting.

Luther Vs. Lefebvre

from The Remnant:

..and I agree with Michael Matt wholeheartedly

The Church of Accompaniment: Luther vs. Lefebvre

Written by 

vatican hd
New From Remnant TV…

Francis says his new, non-judgmental Church is the ‘church of accompaniment’. Question is: accompaniment to where? Heaven? Hell? La-La Land? Not sure what Pope Francis is talking about anymore? Join the club.

Plus, Michael Matt announces he is standing with a much-maligned defender of the Church.  Which one? Watch this video to find out.

Review of Storck’s “From Christendom to Americanism and Beyond”

By Augustinus

Review of Thomas Storck’s “From Christendom to Americanism and Beyond: The long jagged trail to a postmodern void.” Angelico Press, Kettering OH, 2015.

Thomas Storck is a familiar name among hard identity Catholics. He has served as a contributing editor for Caelum et Terra from 1991 until the magazine closed in 1996 and the New Oxford Review from 1996 to 2006. Since 1998 he has been a member of the editorial board of The Chesterton Review. He is the author of three previous books, The Catholic Milieu (Christendom Press, 1987), Foundations of a Catholic Political Order (Four Faces Press, 1998) and Christendom and the West (Four Faces Press, 2000). The current book, under review here,”From Christendom to Americanism and Beyond” is a collection of previously published essays written for various Catholic journals over many years up to about 2015. You can read many of his excellent essays at www.thomasstorck.org

Any Catholic concerned about the current Church crisis should read Storck. In Storck you will find insights into everything from why Christendom has declined in Europe and then throughout the world; what happened at Vatican II, how Catholics should think of America; how to evaluate the 60s; Catholic social teaching, what to think of the catholic intellectual rennaissance of the early 20th century, the nature of modernity and post-modernity, the role of Church vis a vis culture, philosophy of history, political theory and what the relation should be between church and state. He is an astute observer of the political world and has a discerning eye for long term historical trends.

In “From Christendom…” we get essays on all these topics and so it is a must read for any Catholic seeking to rebuild the church and the surrounding decadent culture. In what follows I will summarize what I took away from reading these essays. My “take” on Storck’s ideas will necessarily over simplify his positions. The reader is advised to read Storck directly. But I need to summarize his positions and some of his insights so that the reader can gauge my critique of those positions. In fact I agree with most of what Storck says but will disagree on some key and very fundamental claims he makes concerning the root of the problem and the solution to the crisis.

So lets begin with Storck’s insights or claims: Storck agrees with many Catholic intellectuals who claim that the root source of modernity and the unremitting hostility to the Church in the modern period lies in nominalism or the idea of late medieval philosophers that universals do not exist, only particulars exist. If there are no universals, then there are no standards against which we can compare particulars. The loss of standards leads inevitably to a loss of intellectual rigor and ultimate truths. Similarly, if individuals or particulars or instances are the only realities then individuals should be free and unconstrained. The nominalists also overly valorized the will of God putting it before God’s other attributes (such as his logos). God’s will and power according to the nominalists has no limits—he is utterly unconstrained. This idea had the effect of portraying God as arbitrary and absolutely free. Freedom understood as no barriers became the primary value for an emerging modernity at the waning of the middle ages and the birth of the renaissance and enlightenment.

The nominalist rejection of standards and universals and its elevation of freedom as the primary characteristic of God had the effect of severing the link between reason and faith that the Church had labored to build over many centuries via the syntheses of Athens and Jerusalem by the early Church Fathers and in the work of Thomas Aquinas in the high middle ages.

Once reason was severed from faith a Luther could claim that faith was primary and that only scripture contained God’s word—not the logos inherent in reality. Sola scriptura meant that scriptures were interpreted not by the church but by the individual conscience and thus the individual conscience  (not the mystical body of Christ) was the route to God. Protestantism was born and largely facilitated the cultural conditions for modernity.

i will return to a critique of these claims below.

What should Catholics think of Church and state and America according to Storck? Storck sides with Aquinas who takes the common sense approach that some combination of monarchy, democracy and republicanism is probably best. Storck sees these elements in the American polity but argues America and every other political system needs to be guided by the Church. He holds up the 1922 Irish constitution as an example of a Church guided democratic republic with a strong executive. That Irish constitution outlawed divorce and abortion, explicitly placed itself under God’s protection, provided absolute protections for religious liberty and so forth.

In America the church, according to Storck never really influenced American government. The New Deal coalition was the height of Church influence on America as catholics were key to the coalition. It gave us all the presidents from FDR to Nixon and enacted a pro Vatican and Catholic policy internationally and all the great social legislation domestically…from social security to civil rights to environmental protections—all consistent with catholic social doctrine according to Storck. The peak of the New Deal influence culturally came in the 1950s. The New Deal coalition ended when the other groups in the coalition accepted abortion legislation in the early 70s. The catholics then gravitated to the republicans but the republicans were never effective defenders of catholic positions. Today Catholics are not included in any stable political coalition in America. the Church’s social positions on some issues such as immigration and the environment are “leftist” while its cultural positions are “rightist” and its international positions unclassifiable on a right left spectrum.

Storck takes his philosophy of history from the Bible seeing the incarnation as the key event in world history. He takes the line in revelation that the apostasy of the gentiles will signal the beginning of the end of history. He sees modernity as this beginning of the end of history.

Storck says that in order to reverse the decline in Church influence and to rebuild Christendom we need to recall Pope Leo XII political and social teachings. There is NO INHERENT RIGHT to error. Only the church can preserve a polity from error so the Church has a right and duty to be the preeminent leader in a culture and polity. That does not mean we have to have a theocracy as Islam proposes. But it does mean that we need to work for political conditions that obtained in countries such as the 1922 Ireland before its recent apostasy; Spain before its apostasy, the Latin American countries before their apostasy and so forth to serve as models.

There is much else in Storck’s essays than these few remarks convey. I strongly recommend this book to every concerned catholic. It is a must read in order to think clearly about the current crisis.

Now what are my criticisms of Storck? I do not agree with Storck and the many other Catholic intellectuals who argue that nominalism was the source of the intellectual errors of modernity. This vastly overstates nominalisms influence. While Protestantism and many of the modernist philosophers share some nominalist assumptions, it is just not accurate to think that nominalism shaped their entire philosophies or even major portions of their philosophies.

The sources of modernity are complex. I think Storck is on firmer ground when he argues that severance of the link between faith and reason was characteristic of Protestantism and Protestantism was the major cultural force that ushered in modernity.

When science came on the scene during later stages of the renaissance and the beginning stages of the reformation it encountered a Christendom that either exalted irrationality (Protestantism) or could present only a hackneyed version of Aristotle’s philosophy as a guide to investigation of reality. Science, in short, found no partner among official Christian circles when it was struggling to be born.

The enmity between science and Christendom was briefly relaxed when the Jesuit order emerged in the 1500s and produced some of the best scientists in the world. The counter-reformation church had re-seized the cultural leadership during this period but it was not to last. The Jesuits were suppressed by the Pope (under pressure from despotic monarchies) in 1750 right when the enlightenment was emerging. With the Jesuits out of the picture secular intellectuals in alliance with scientists (who had previously aligned with the Jesuits) now took center stage and they have yet to be challenged for cultural leadership.

In short, Storck, like most other Catholic intellectuals has not yet grappled with science as key to modernity. For the Church to recover its cultural leadership its needs to assimilate science and it needs to produce the best scientists in the world….just as it did with the early Jesuits.

 

 

Its not about Pope Francis

The conservative Catholics keep sounding the alarm about Pope Francis while the liberal Catholics keep celebrating his every utterance. Neither group sees the man or his office clearly. In this the conservatives and liberals do the Church a dis-service as what the Church needs is people who can see clearly in this time of acute crisis.

Like every other Pope before him Francis has and will make huge mistakes and these mistake have and will damage the church. Like every other Pope before him Francis has and will make some positive contributions to the Church and these contributions have and will advance the protection and growth of the Church in this time of crisis.

The Pope is a product of his years of training in a jesuit order that both benefited from the the post Vatican II changes and damaged by those changes. Similarly, the modern Church will continue to produce people like Pope Francis…people who combine the best and the worst of the modern intellectual landscape.

To save the church, the task is to learn to discern the times; to learn to identify the gold within the dross, to learn to nurture what is theologically sound from what is heretical and unsound. But there are very very few individuals who can do this. Most people in the church cannot see past “conservative” vs “liberal” labels and rush to identify themselves with those labels and then all too readily “agree” or consent or acquiesce to seeing the entire world through those labels. It is a form of spiritual and intellectual bankruptcy to do so.

In past ages, in past Church crises the people who saved the church were the great anti-heriesiarchs, the great doctors of the Church. They were not necessarily saints. in times like these it is necessary to strive NOT to be saintly but to see clearlyas you will have no chance of becoming a saint unless you can first see clearly.