Holy Fathers Francis and Dominic

Friday, February 24, 2017

Brass Tacks

This web log entry is a brief(?) take on the crux of the problem. What is the underlying question here? One might be able to get down to brass tacks if the question(s) was/were presented like so:

Why do the Vatican II changes matter so much as to lose confidence in the Roman Catholic Church. If Vatican II didn't change Dogma, then what is wrong with it and why is making Mass more accessible a bad thing?

1. Is the confidence in Our Lord's Church (The Roman Catholic Church) shaken by Vatican II?

No! Not in the least! Our Lord promised the gift of Indefectability to the Church Herself. In Her teachings and in Her Dogmas. In Her Sacred Tradition and in Her Magesterium (teaching arm). By the very words of those in charge of the Church (quotations of John XXIII, Paul VI, and Benedict XVI in my blog entry "Is George B. Shaw Correct") we see that Vatican II doesn't even claim to want to mess with these Pillars of the Church. What I would suggest rather, is the hierarchy is where the faithful are experiencing the loss in confidence. And the gift of Indefectability does not lie with the hierarchy, as Christ never promised Peter he would never be wrong! To be completely honest, there are only a few bishops left in the entire world that would not be called a Modernist by Pope St. Pius X. The hierarchy and the Church are thankfully not identical and stand separate when it comes to criticism. Lets quickly call to mind the current situation where we have Pope Francis vs. Cardinal Burke on Communion for the divorced/re-married. When the hierarchy is loosing it, one can doubt (dubia) the leaderships opinion when it differs from the Faith that has always been taught. We got so use to having GREAT leaders looking out for heresy that we just took for granted that everything out of the mouths of the popes were good and trustworthy. Look at the string of Popes: Gregory XVI, Pius IX, Leo XIII, St. Pius X, Benedict XV, Pius XI, Pius XII! Wow, if you read what these popes wrote, you would understand whar it meas to be the Good Shepherd. These popes saw what was coming and warned the clergy and Church at large what was going to happen... and then it happened.

2. What is wrong with Vatican II?

All normal people must admit Vatican II is a recognized Council of the Church because it was called by the Pope... certainly part of Her history. Some people say the Holy Ghost was not invoked as in other Councils because there weas no need for His gift of Infallibility for the first time in a Council of the Catholic Church. Rather, I'd say the Holy Ghost was certainly with the Council, as under His wing, none of the novelties or conflicts with past teachings were declared to believed by all Catholics as a matter of faith (which would have compromised question one!) Here are some of the conflicting/new ideas in Vatican II:

Dec. 1963 Sacrisanctum Concilium - On the Restoration of the Liturgy. The following is an excerpt taken from my entry of 29-November, 2010. Please see on Sacrisanctum Concillium for more. ***"Introduces the "Paschal Mystery" which was never taught before and makes no distinction on what is actually going on at Mass. Tradition says the death of Our Lord is the sacrifice that saves us, not the Paschal Mysteries. The Mass is the application of the merits won for us while Christ was alive. Once you die, you cannot merit. And neither could Christ"*** [This is regarding whether the Resurrection and Ascension was meritorious and whether those mysteries won grace to be applied to us in the Mass]" This document flies in the face of Pope St. Pius V's Quo Primum July 1570 and many sessions of the Council of Trent on the Nature of the Mass.

Nov. 1964 Lumen Gentium - On the Church. The following is an excerpt taken from my entry of 02-December, 2010. Please see On Lumen Gentium for more.  ***"Tradition says that the True Church must be seen, you must be able to put your finger on it, and outside of it, God does not use other religions to save souls. Now, the Church is actually a mystery, that we can't quite figure out (which is in some ways true, but we can still know the Church and that is not stated clearly.) Vatican II is pretty sure (as it uses the subjunctive case instead of the indicative case) that the fullness of Truth subsists in the Roman Church. This is problematic. If the true society only subsists in the Church, it is not efficacious. It uses a lot of vague flowery words to get around saying that there is, in fact, an apostolic line that only can claim Truth for its own."*** [This goes against everything the Encyclical "Quas Primas" stands for of Pope Pius XI regarding the Social Kingship of Christ

Oct. 1965 Nostrae Aetate - On Non-Christian Religions. The following is an excerpt taken from my entry of 07-December, 2010. Please see On Nostrae Aetate for more. ***"The Document is only on how other religions unite. Not how they are wrong. Starts with Hinduism. The Hindus haven't discovered any divine mystery. But this documents says they worship God, free from the illusions of this world. There is no condemnation of anything false. Buddhism can strive to obtain the enlightened one. Islam worships God the Father. St. Francis Xavier went to Sri Lanka. He converted the little Hindus and told them to go destroy (the statues in) the temple. [This document totally contradicts Mortalium Animos (on Fostering True Religious Unity) and Qui Pluribus (on Faith and Religion) of Pope Pius XI.

Dec 1965 Dignitatis Humanae - On Religious Liberty. The following is an excerpt taken from my entry of 12-December, 2010. Please see On Dignitatis Humanae for more. ***"This is the hardest document for Americans to understand. We take for granted the rights of Man (according to the French Revelation.)"We the people!" Life, Liberty, and (property) the pursuit of happiness. You do what you need to do, as long as you don't hurt anybody and you pay your taxes, and you're good to go. We have a very pluralistic mentality. Well, (it was actually called) "Americanism" was condemned by Pope Leo XIII."*** In fact, most ideas of this document are condemned by Maxima Quidem (Again, Pius IX in 1862 just 100 years earlier.) This document completely goes against Paul VI's predecessors and wasn't signed by several bishops.

So what is the big deal! We don't have to believe any of the new ideas of Vatican II, right?!?!?

Well, the big deal is that these ideas are condemned and we were told to stay away from people who preached these very condemned ideas. It is for the good of our souls, and our loved ones' souls. Not only do the novelties of Vatican II not save, they can lead us on the road to hell (or else why would they have been condemned?) Some of Vatican II was good. Some of Vatican II was unclear. Some of Vatican II went against what was previously taught.

3. Why is the New Way of Mass a bad thing (isn't it more accessible?)

The Novus Ordo, I admit, is more convenient to the general population. It is in the common language so no subtitles needed. I think that Mel's Passion of the Christ is better being in the Aramaic and Latin as it maintains a certain aura of mysteriousness, authenticity, and the supernatural.Well, that is nice, but that is just this author's opinion. Hey guess what? The Novus Ordo Mass was promulgated in Latin in 1969! So lets come to a few conclusions. The New Mass IS NOT he Old Mass translated into English. "Why" is a question that you have to ask yourself! They are objectively not the same Mass (while they share in the same Sacrifice as do all valid Masses) and if the New Mass was merely a translation of the Old, then we would be having a very different one-sided-blog conversation here. Okay, so what are we left with critiquing? Well, the Novus Ordo was critiqued by someone who, unlike this blogger, was a theologian. Cardinal Ottaviani along with seven other cardinals undertook a critique of the text of New Mass.  The Ottaviani Intervention was simply a letter to Pope Paul VI on what was theologically incorrect with Novus Ordo Mass in its pure form. I wont go into whats wrong with it, as that matter is exhausted in the Intervention which is available below. Its only 14 or so pages and a must read! But I will tell you the conclusion... The Novus Ordo Mass is not only lacking, but harmful even if it is said in Latin, said facing East, and with no liturgical abuses.

Is it more accessible? Paul VI wanted the Mass more accessible to the Protestants. But we know that the Mass is the Propitiatory Sacrifice to God not an opportunity to congregate with non-believers (of course you can take the opportunity to invite your non-Catholic neighbor to come to Mass.) When the emphasis moves from "come to Mass with me and see how people have worshiped God for 2000 years" to "come to Mass with me, you'll fit right in" we know a shift is happening. The graces won at Mass can move non-believing hearts. A non-Catholic seeing a Mass celebrated for the first time can strike a conversion because of what the Mass intrinsically is! But the Mass is not meant as the primary time for people to learn about the Catholic Faith. It is for those who already profess the Faith to worship God in a fitting manner. And it is no to be available to all. That is why the Mass (even the New Order) is broken into two parts. The Mass of the Catechumens (N.O. "Liturgy of the Word") and The Mass of the Faithful (N.O. "Liturgy of the Eucharist) where the Catechumens are dismissed. The Consecration and distribution of Holy Communion is for those who are in Communion with the Church. Its exclusive - thats the way it is! I didn't make it up. Paul VI didn't make it up, St. Pius V didn't make it up. It is Apostolic in Nature that the Mass is not meant to be a teaching tool for others, but the four ends: worship, petition, thanksgiving, and to atone for sin.

When I stand back and look at the whole picture, I would dare say it is not about the Mass but the teaching behind the Mass that is what we are fighting for. The Mass will manifest the teachings.
  • The New Theology of the Pastoral Council comes with the New Mass. The fruits of the New Theology is rockstar popes, 50% of "Catholics" voting for Hilary, and shortage of priests.
  • The Old Theology of the Dogmatic Councils comes with the Traditional Rite. The fruits of the Old Theology were clear teachings and full seminaries. I know the SSPX has a huge wait list for seminarians, as does the FSSP from what I understand.
Is confidence rocked in the Church? No.
Is confidence rocked in the Church's leadership? Yes.

Is there a crisis in the Church? Yes, of course in the Middle East, Churches are being bombed and Catholics are being put to death. Is there a crisis in the Church in the US? Yes, although our bodies are not being persecuted (Thanks, Trump) like our brothers and sisters in the Middle East, our souls, however, are subjected to a crisis of the Faith. My bishop is off celebrating the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation with the Lutherans. Something is not right! All this post is meant to provide is just enough information for those who want dig deeper. Those who wish to no longer wear rose color glasses and pretend everything is honky dory.

The three exhaustive sources that everyone should at least be aware of. (Maybe start by just browsing the Table of Contents!):

Iota Unum - A study of the Changes in Catholic Church in the 20th Century

The Popes against the Modern Errors

The Ottaviani Intervention

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Is George Bernard Shaw Correct?

"Those who can, do. Those who can't... teach"

Today I would like to get in a little trouble with my teacher friends. They are overworked, underpaid, and have one of the most important jobs - namely, forming our children. I had some terrific teachers in my lifetime. I also had some average teachers in my life time. I would like to say, for the record, that even if you are an average teacher, you are twice the person I will ever be! God Bless you for dealing with brats all day. I think George was not talking about my teacher-friends... but more made this statement regarding the tenured intellectual snobs who live only in theory and do not know what it is like in the real world. The professors that cancelled their tests because there might be emotional distraught over recent election results come to mind.

This post, of course, is not about how I feel concerning teachers. I brought up teachers because the topic of this post is "What does it mean to teach?" 

Some words only have one level of meaning. An example is "telephone." A telephone is a telephone is a telephone. Some words have more than one level of meaning. Love, for example. "I love those shoes" does not mean you will take a bullet for those shoes I hope. Which brings us to the word teach. To teach is to pass on knowledge. You can be taught a lesson by example. You can teach your kids to tie their shoes. You can teach them the difference between right and wrong. If you are in a pastor, you can teach your flock what it means to be a good Christian. If you are pope you can do that too with Your Holiness's weekly audiences and actions! If you are a pope, you can also solemnly teach the Catholic Church what they need to believe in order to be called Catholic, and if they do not believe it, they are outside of the Church. 

Allow me to opine with everybody's favorite Council: Vatican Two One.(my editorial words in red)

Chapter 4. 
On the infallible teaching authority of the Roman Pontiff
1. That apostolic primacy which the Roman Pontiff possesses as successor of Peter, the prince of the apostles, includes also the supreme power of TEACHING. This Holy See has always maintained this, the constant custom of the Church demonstrates it, and the ecumenical councils, particularly those in which East and West met in the union of faith and charity, have declared it.

6. For the Holy Spirit God's gift of Infallibility was promised to the successors of Peter, not so that they might, by his revelation not private revelation, not a eureka moment, not a gut feeling, not a enlightenment of Jesuit formation make known some new doctrine, like Benedict XVI's "two people can share in one popeship, the Passive and the Active" - or more his contemporary predecessor's "divorced and actively remarried people can receive Holy Communion" but that, by his assistance, they might religiously guard protect from error and faithfully expound define the revelation or deposit of faith transmitted by the apostles. the last one died c. 100 AD meaning no new faith after St. John passed away.

Indeed, their apostolic TEACHING was embraced by all the venerable fathers and reverenced and followed by all the holy orthodox doctors, for they knew very well that this See of St. Peter always remains unblemished by any error that is taught, in accordance with the divine promise of our Lord and Savior to the prince of his disciples: I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail; and when you have turned again, strengthen your brethren.

7. This gift given by God, not made up so Catholics can always be right of truth God's truth, adopted by us... not the other way around and never-failing faith was therefore divinely conferred on Peter and his successors in this See so that they might discharge their exalted office actually do what they were put in place to do for the salvation of all, and so that the whole flock of Christ the Catholic Church might be kept away by them the popes from the poisonous food of error heresy and be nourished with the sustenance of heavenly doctrine what is to be held by Catholics so that we may go to heaven. Thus the tendency to schism schism like the Protestants or schism SSPX??? is removed and the whole Church is preserved in unity, and, resting on its foundation, can stand firm against the gates of hell. Unity is very important, one of the four marks. One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism binds us together.

9. Therefore, faithfully adhering clinging/following anything but not doing your own thing to the tradition received from the beginning of the Christian faith not making up one's own religion, to the glory of God our savior, for the exaltation triumph, supremacy, victory, whats right is placed above what is wrong of the Catholic religion and for the salvation His Holiness's intention is made clear he is doing this for the salvation of souls is making the next statement of the Christian people, with the approval of the Sacred Council not that the approval of the council is needed as we'll see, we the popes use to speak in "royal we", so this plural doesn't mean "I need the council's help to do what I am about to do" but it can mean that the bishops are joining in the popes power to teach TEACH and define as a divinely revealed dogma bingo! - key to all of this that when the Roman Pontiff see? only he needs to define speaks EX CATHEDRA, I didn't caps lock this one, it means From the Chair (comes from the time when teachers sat and students stood) that is I love it! here comes the explination of what Ex Cathedra means, when, in the exercise of his office as shepherd and teacher of all Christians, in virtue of his supreme apostolic authority making clear to all he is acting in the capacity with infallibility he defines a doctrine concerning faith or morals not ecology to be held believed as a matter of Faith by the whole Church all Catholics, no exceptions, he possesses, by the divine assistance promised to him in blessed Peter, that infallibility what he possesses which the divine Redeemer willed his Church to enjoy in defining draw a line between what can and cannot be held doctrine concerning faith or morals the two subjects the pope rules over. Therefore, such definitions of the Roman Pontiff are of themselves, and not by the consent of the Church again, no synod needed, irreformable.
So then, should anyone, which God forbid, have the temerity audacity to reject this definition of ours: let him be anathema. Cast out! The condemnations let us what is at stake. It makes it clear that this was always Truth.

Lets look at the language of other Infallible teachings from the last time a dogma has been defined Ex Cathedra in 1950!

From Munificentissimus Deus of Pius XII:
"...have invoked the light of the Spirit of Truth... by the authority of our Lord Jesus Christ, of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and by our own authority, we pronounce, declare, and define it to be a divinely revealed dogma: that the Immaculate Mother of God...was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory. Hence if anyone... should dare willfully to deny or to call into doubt that which we have defined, let him know that he was fallen away completely from the divine and Catholic Faith."

Whats on the test? Are things like false worship going to matter when we face our Maker? Yes! Are things like being good stewards of planet Earth going to matter when our soul is judged? Not nearly as much! The point of this blog is to focus on the stuff that actually matters. There are other blogs that have artsy pictures of food from above, or even talk about how great the pope is/isn't. This isn't that blog.

Okay, so far I hope that I have convinced you, dear reader, that the pope speaking Ex Cathedra is the highest form of teaching. What does that mean about when he does mean when he doesn't speak Ex Catherdra? Well...obviously he does not enjoy the gift of Infallibility i.e. can be fallible. When John Paul II said what Archbishop Lefebvre did (disobediently consecrated four bishops in 1988) was a schismatic act, His Holiness was talking off the cuff, not Ex Cathedra. It goes back to "I love those shoes." Love doesn't mean love in that instant... maybe a connotation of affection and desire, but no where near love. When JPII said "schismatic" it didn't meet the real definition of schism. When Henry VIII broke away from Rome and the English bishops renounced their allegiance to Rome, and continued to rule as a counter-Roman church, that does meet the definition of schism!

So the Protestants in England and all over denied the Petrine Primacy, infallibly taught in Chapter One of the First Vatican Council, and they are wrong for doing so. There are probably 100(0) dogmas that were TAUGHT we could go over that the Protestants do not agree with. That makes them outside of the Church, and we should pray for their return. But what about the Traditionalists? They do not accept Vatican II. Why? Well, in short, Vatican two was the antithesis of The Syllabus of Errors by Bl. Pius IX. The Syllabus (hey, thats another teacher word ;) )condemned everything Vatican II stood for. Vatican II is called the French Revolution of the Church so that Fraternity, Liberty, and Equality would reign. What did the Second Vatican Council TEACH? Lets see what the popes said.

"The substance of the ancient doctrine of the Deposit of Faith is one thing, and the way it is presented is another. And it is the latter which must be taken into great consideration with patience if necessary, everything being measured in the forms and proportions of a magesterium which is predominately pastoral in character."
-Pope John XXIII's opening speech of Vatican II. 

"There are those who ask by what authority, what theological qualification, the Council intended to give to its TEACHINGS, knowing that it avoided issuing solemn dogmatic definitions backed by the Church's infallible TEACHING authority. The answer is known by those who remember the concilliar declaration of March 6, 1964, repeated on November 16, 1964. In view of the pastoral nature of the Council, it avoided proclaiming in an extraordinary manner any dogmas carrying the mark of infallibility."
-Pope Paul VI (general audience, Rome, 01-December, 1966)

"The Second Vatican Council has not been treated as a part of the entire living Tradition of the Church, but as an end of Tradition, a new start from zero. The truth is that this particular council defined no dogma at all, and deliberately chose to remain on a modest level, as a merely pastoral council; and yet so many treat it as though it had made itself into a sort of super-dogma which takes away the importance of all the rest."
-then Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger (address to the Bishops of Chile, 13-July, 1988)

This post is too long. I need to wrap it up! I will attempt to answer one last question: How does a Traditionalist say that the Church cannot err to a Protestant but say the Church is in error when talking to a non-traditional Catholic? I answer that question with Vatican One. God gave us his Bride, the Church, and handed the spotless Faith which cannot fail because it comes from God, not Man. The Church cannot err. The men leading the Church can, have, and do err. They cannot err if they invoke their potency as the Vicar of Christ teach from the throne of St. Peter and dogmatically teach a truth that all Christians must believe, and that has been held by the faithful since Apostolic times. God has promised us the gift of Infallibility in that circumstance, and if you call yourself Catholic, there is no way around it! If the pope, his College of Cardinals, the USCCB, etc. have their own opinion, that is nothing new. There are lots of times in history the popes have been wrong, and I would be happy to explain to a Protestant why they were wrong. The three cases come that come to mind are Popes Formosus, Honorius, and Liberius. These popes were not wrong because they turned the Vatican into a brothel like Pope Alexander VI... they actually gave their private opinion on matters of faith to the public and were not remembered by history kindly! But they, by the grace of God, never formally taught their "teachings" in dogmatic definitions. The good Christians in those times were right in standing up against the false teachings. They knew the Holy Mother Church is always correct, and someone at the top was screwing up a la St. Paul to the Galatians 1:8.

A Catholic can tell a Protestant that Catholicism is indeed the Inerrant Church that Christ founded on St. Peter. That same person can tell his or her Catholic neighbor that the Church hierarchy is errant and wrong on one or multiple matters (as long as they can back it up) since the pope and the bishops are not the Church The popes and bishops have been given charge to protect the Church's Faith and pass it along unblemished and without adding their own spin. That is why they are there, and it is true that we must obey our Local Ordinaries in everything but sin since they have delegated jurisdiction over us. But with the amount of harm the hierarchy is allowing/promoting, it would be hard to say that we are not in a Crisis of the Faith. There have been persecutions, but we have to acknowledge the past crises and what was the outcome. Here are the Fourth Century words of St. Athanasius to his flock. 
"It is a fact that they have the churches, but you have the Faith...They claim that they represent the Church, but in reality, they are the ones who are expelling themselves from it and going astray."

If there have been past crises, a current crisis of the Faith, then there could even be future crises. (link to The Lord of the World review here!) But we have Christs words to rest on! "The gates of Hell shall never prevail against it!

St. Athanasius, pray for us.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Smells and Bells

I'd like to take a moment and collect my thoughts about the Tridentine Mass. The Old Rite. "Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite" or so commonly called the Traditional Latin Mass. What is it? What is it not? Why do people like it? Why are people scared of it? What does the hierarchy think of it? What did the hierarchy think of it? Is it worth it? I will answer each question and try to be brief.

What is it?
Well, the Council of Trent says the Mass the propitiatory sacrifice offered to appease an angry God. Why is God angry? Is God happy after Mass? Well, He is unchanging and God doesn't have feelings (as feelings are tied in with the body), so it is not as though He starts off angry  and ends up happy. Those are characteristics that we assign God to understand the relation we are to Him. He is "angry" because we sin and he is "happy" because we do what he laid out for us to do. He is pleased in a way that is outside of time with the Sacrifice of the Mass as the re-presentation of Calvary, but in an unbloody manner. The Mass has the same priest and same victim as the Crucifixion, namely the Son offering (priest) Himself (victim) to the Father. The Traditional Roman Rite was pretty much done naturally and organically aggregating by the time Pope St. Gregory the Great celebrated the Mass himself (d 604.) It was not invented, but simply codified by Pope St. Pius V (d.1572.) The Roman Church now had a Mass that could be celebrated on all altars in a standardized manner. This also protected the novelties from Protestantism that was ravaging churches in European towns hundreds of miles away from Rome. It was Western perfection, and the beauty of the rubric paid the dogma the reverence that was due. Since we are dealing with Jesus as both priest and victim, the ceremony must be in accordance with that truth. That is why it can often be seen with all the pomp and circumstance, smells and bells of chanted pageantry or can be said in solemn silence. But the True Mass would never be said with the careless, improvisational, lackadaisical manner we see in "Christian" services today!

An aside: It is not a competition, but if you ever witness another rite (Ex. the Divine Liturgy of St. John
Chrysostom) you might think... man, as an American Catholic, I was gypped! Yes you were, but not by being born into an inferior rite of Mass, you were gypped by those who will not give you the real thing! The Western Rite has an equally solemn version called the Solemn High Mass... it just takes three clerics who know what they are doing to sing it for you (plus a myrad of altar servers and a choir that reads Gregorian Notation) There are lots of Ancient ways to celebrate Mass that are still being celebrated today. They all have their own beauty. As Americans we tolerate the mediocre partially because the richness is hidden from us, partially because it would hurt to change back after we invested so much in this new thing, partly because we have been brainwashed into thinking modern art/music/architecture is an improvement. Below, a picture of the different Rites in all their glory. Can someone tell me why "Latin" looks like a different religion to me? I thought that was my rite! (see what I did there?)

What is it not?
Glad you asked. It is not a service, like the Protestants have. Man provides service. God does not provide a service to Himself. That is the fundamental difference and the Mass should not reflect a Protestant Service because of that very fact. Since we already know what Mass is, we know it's not what we can get out of it, but what we can give to God therefore, the Mass is not even a time to learn the Faith during Mass. Now, the Church is very strong on learning the Faith through Magesterium, Scripture, and Tradition. This is accomplished a number of ways, one of which is why a Sermon (which some people thing is the main part of church) is mandated on Sundays and Holy Days to explain whats going on. But, fun fact, it is not actually part of the Mass. The priest takes of his Maniple (the ornate towel hanging off his left arm) to show that he is setting aside the toil of Gods opus (calling a time out from Mass) to give us instruction. The Mass is not a social event to show off your new clothes. The Mas is not time to sit next to the hot girl you want to shake hands/go in for a hug, but we already knew that! Holy Mass is not even the re-presentation of the Last Supper. It uses the words of the last supper to get us to the Sacrifice, but that is why the priest doesn't face the people in the Old Rite. See, a person presiding over a meal would not turn his back on his guests, but the priest entering the hypostatic union - on our behalf - leads us to God. A quick comparison of the two Masses shows us what we really are dealing with. Something that is Man-Centered vs. something that is God-Centered.

It is not a secret the the New Order of Mass was fabricated in 1968 to bridge the gap between Protestantism and Catholicism. Pope Paul VI said so. That is why 6 Protestant ministers sat in on Vatican II. The New Mass was created ("banal and on the spot" according to then Card. Ratzinger) so a Calvinist could say the words we use to "celebrate the Eucharist" and there would be no stumbling blocks. I wish I was making that up, but it is all very much documented and scary. The New Mass does not have an Offertory that says "victim" and that is not on accident. The Calvinist would have a problem with that, but you know what the Calvinist would not have a problem saying? "for through your goodness we have received the bread we offer you: fruit of the earth and work of human hands, it will become for us the bread of life." That says nothing about the definition of Mass according to the council of Trent. The Dogma is swept under the rug. The old saying Lex Orandi Lex Credendi (The Law of Prayer is the Law of Belief) means that if we worship with watered down rubric, we will no doubt have a watered down faith.
Those are some of the things the Mass is not. That is why I chose not to call it by its popular name. This whole "Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite" thing is NEW as of 2007! Its also crap to say "The Novus Ordo is the Ordinary Form of the Mass (not to this writer,) and the Tridentine Mass is "the same Order of Mass as the New Mass, just in its Extraordinary Form!" The two are totally different. I six year old can tell you that.

Why do People like it?
Good question... because its pretty? Because the incense smells nice? Because the vestments look cool? Because the people that go there dress better? Because there are no altar girls/Extraordinary Ministers(Ministresses)/Communion in the hand or other liturgical abuseses? Because the sermons are more conservative? Because the music is lovely (or at least not pop/new age/emotive driven BS?) I don't know why people like it! Those are some guesses, but it really doesn't matter what we like... it matters what God likes, right? (and God doesn't like sloppy stuff.) I happen to like it because I can go anywhere there is a Latin Mass in the world, and be actively pray with my fellow Catholic new family member. India, Africa, China, anywhere! That is not the same for when Mass is in the vernacular language.

Why are people scared of it?
 Simple, because its in Latin. At first there is the elephant in the room: language barrier. A person almost feels not right at a Latin Mass the first few times because Mass is supposed to be something of rote memory, and this betrays their familiarity. People would rather bring a stranger who has never been to Mass to the English Mass than the Latin Mass.  Even though the Latin Mass is 1500 years older, there is a tendency to dumb down the experience, because "its easier." I really feel people are done with "easy."  **A great time to ask the question - Why is the Novus Ordo Mass not just an English Translation of the Latin Mass? I'll save that for another post** We are scared of the Tridentine Rite because cannot understand what is going on the first several times. Because we get lost if we try follow along in the book, and we have never been lost in an English Mass before! Because we look dumb when  we don't know when to kneel. Because we can't make the correct responses. All of the above! What is the remedy? I think first we must realize that it is the Mass of the Ages. I, me, this stupid writer, could go to the same Mass that 99% of the saints that I can name went to and worship with them (even be their altar boy if the saint were a priest!) After the 5th Latin Mass I went to, I knew enough where I didn't stick out like a sore thumb. By the 10th Mass it was second nature. Change is scary. No pain, no gain.

What does the hierarchy think of it?
Most of them hate it. The pope doesn't understand why anybody that grew up after Vatican II likes the Old Mass. The bishops allow it because JPII gave an indult to say it. After Benedict said all priest can say it, the priests who wanted to say it go on the naughty list. Francis has crushed the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate. And His Holiness wants to reconcile with the SSPX? My Local Ordinary has said there is no room for Latin Mass only priests in his diocese. My bishop could care less about the Latin Mass crowed. He throws the Catholics who want tradition a bone, but no more. When someone gets the bright idea to write His Excellency a letter wanting more, the answer is the priest celebrating the approved TLM must warn the congregation not to write their shepherd anymore letters on that subject. But not all Episcopal Personages are as bad. We find Their Excellencies Alexander Sample and Salvatore Cordileone that lead by example in providing Pontifical High Masses to their faithful (like the pictures above). And guess what? Lex Orandi Lex Credendi... thats right, two of the most conservative bishops in the United States. But the one who wears the miter in the Diocese of St. Augustine worships with non-Catholics. Life isn't fair. We are all dealt different cards. It is how we play them that God will judge us.

What did the hierarchy think of it?
(I think I will save this for another post.)

Is it worth it?
Very much so. Seeing movies like For Greater Glory, There Be Dragons, Becket, The Cardinal, and Catholics (link to future reviews here)... we know that if the Mass is what it says it is, then it is worth dying for. The Sacrifice of the Mass is the same in every valid Mass, but the prayers surrounding the Mass must be fitting! If you, dear reader, are considering going to the Latin Mass, please do. Don't go just once. Sign yourself up for five times. Give it a shot. Nobody there is perfect, and 99% of the people had to go through the same growing pains before they settled in. If you are a lady, where a veil (1 Cor. 11:6) and if you are a man, throw on a tie. It won't kill you, but it will make you stronger. Leave the prayer books at home. Just let the Latin and incense wash over you like a breath of fresh aromatic air! Remember... the Latin Mass is not just one flavor of ice cream amoungst other equally good flavors of ice cream.It is the Rite of Holy Mass that you were supposed to inherit all along! Only you have been robbed of what was rightfully yours...

 But no longer!

St. Gregory the Great, pray for us.
St. Pius V, pray for us
St. Francis de Sales (his feast is today in the old calendar,) pray for us

Monday, January 23, 2017

Adult Indult

My roommate was just received in to the Catholic Church. I love him, but I haven't blogged in a while. What makes me want to hop online for this?

Well, he received special permission to do it outside of RCIA and in the old rite.What is most surprising is for him to do it of his own volition. A brief overview:

After his home parish said absolutely not, he found a priest that allowed him to be catechized from Baltimore 4. This went on for three months, and a date was set. He is coming over from Protestantism - Baptist. So he had to warm up to the idea of taking on saints, and asking them for their intercession.

He chose St. John the Baptist for his baptismal patron... a homage to his past religion? X^D
He chose St. Francis de Sales for his confirmation patron. Perhaps because Introduction to the Devout Life is the book on tape I let him borrow.

Part One - He abjured his past heresies.(That was a real thing.) " I, (your name here), XX years of age in the church of St. Patrick's, before you Fr. Get-in-trouble-if-I-used-last-name." Very cool.

Part Two - He was conditionally baptized (That is why the whole thing had to be done in private. Just close friends present as the diocese doesn't like to admit the baptist religion may not have valid baptism (they don't believe in the washing away of original sin.) First, the baptism took place in the vestibule to symbolize my roommate was outside the church. I will work on getting a link to the ritual. He tasted the salt of wisdom, his eyes and ears were opened (Epheta... that is "Be thou opened") He was EXORCISED! Not exactly politically correct. But it shows the difference in the old rite and the new. Secondly he was led into the church proper under the purple stole of the priest. Then made to prostrate before the altar. Lastly he was brought to the baptismal font and anointed and and dunked. JK... the priest just poured water over his head... "If thou has not been baptized... Ego te baptizo." His god-parents touched him as it happened to secure the bond.

Part Three - Conditional Confession. Just in case one of the two times he attempted baptism were valid, he would need to atone for all the sins committed since. So off they went and came back for the next step.

Part Four - Father started off by saying "The bishop is the normal minister of this Sacrament, but he has delegated permission so that I may confirm today." While it did not have all of the pomp an circumstance of a episcopal confirmation, it was modest and honest. My roommates sponsor placed his hand on his shoulder to seal the other bond!

Part Five - I assisted as acolyte and it was rubric according to Holy Communion outside of Mass. That involved a Confiteor, Absolution prayer, and Ecce Agnus Dei! Very Nice. My roommate has looked forward to becoming Catholic for a long time, and the Sacraments given to him were given the due respect they deserve.

The priest said to me afterwards that it was a shame how the new rite of baptism is "butchered." I will pray that he no longer uses the butchered form, but that is his call.

Pictures to come.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Things I don't get

Why are people not talking in full sentences?
ex. "That moment when you go to the store and realize you forgot your wallet."
Okay... are you going to tell me about more?

Also, why are people saying "That ____, though" And they don't even spell though all the way.
ex. That cookie, tho 
Yeah, cookies are good. I know.

Hash tags outside of search functions. Is it really that fashionable to take the time to do that?

Selfies. They are narcissistic.

Guys taking selfies. Super gay.

People saying "_____ game is strong." Why can't you give a compliment like a normal person.

Also, why is this or that "life" 
Ex. Gym is life. 
I know your life revolves around the gym. Please just say "my life revolves around the gym.

And while we're at it... ____ Life. 
I live in Jacksonville, FL. There is a store here that has back window stickers that say Salt Life. It is a beach bum life style. I get that. It was even cute when all the different lifestyles borrowed from it. E.g. "Mud Life," and one that I always "God First Life." hahahahah. Did the whole world take off with this? I dont get it. Insult to injury its spelled "lyfe" 9 times out of 10.


Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Hindsight is 20/20?

I saw an interview and must admit it is very hard to watch. A) the interviewer is relentless but more so because B) you can see the realization on Bp. Fellay's face that he is now neutered. The future for Tradition is bleak now that the head of the SSPX has departed from Abp. Lefebvre's position at the price of the upcoming deal. Another thought crossed my mind. There are two people in the news who would not have let this interview get out of hand. That is of course Bp. WIlliamson and Donald Trump. Did I really just make that comparison? Think about it! Those two are the only people I can honestly say would speak there mind in the face of ridicule. Trump and Fellay, on the other hand, are nothing alike! Bp. Fellay is dangerous because (after watching this excruciating interview) its clear he doesn't have a backbone and he wields power to lead millions (from where did this power come, I know not.) Trump is dangerous because he doesn't have the Faith and has the power to lead millions (from where this power came, I know not either.) It will never work because as Abp. Lefebvre said "we are working to Christianize society, and [Trump] is working to dechristianize society.
At the risk of sounding dramatic, I'm reminded of the movie The Cardinal. When the Cardinal of Austria realizes Hitler broke his promise (and how His Eminence forsook his office by putting his hope in man) he exclaims "And to think, instead of saying praised be to Jesus, I said Heil Hitler." Following the campaign, I am afraid to say Trump's goals are Christ the King's. After watching this interview, I am forced to say neither are Bp. Fellay's goals.
Is the deal with Rome is premature? Depends on your conditions.
1) Obedience is infallible. The SSPX messed up when Abp. Lefebvre consecrated the four bishops. (Well, then you should be FSSP.) Traditionalists need to be approved and that is the end of it.
2) The SSPX will never get what they want, Rome is too far gone. Lets strike while the "approval" iron is hot. We will infiltrate Rome like the Trojan Horse despite the record of all approved Traditional groups in the last 50 years.
3) Abp. Lefebvre recognized a real crisis, one that is not over. His stance is to batten down the hatches and let the storm blow over. It might take 20 years, 50 years, 100 years, or more, but when the storm is over and the Pope acts like a Catholic again, then you simply submit.

(link to interview. The Conflict Zone interviews Bishop Fellay.)