Thursday, October 5, 2017

Food for thought...

The following are the opening paragraphs of a truly thought provoking post:

If one considers the transformation of Plato’s Academy, champion of eternal truth, into a center of radical skepticism against which St. Augustine wrote his Contra Academicos, or contemplates the splits and changes that have occurred in all other philosophical schools, one will see that the preservation of Catholic doctrine over two millennia is a miracle. Considering likewise the countless divisions between and within the different Protestant confessions, as well as in other religions, it is evident that the way Catholic teaching has survived intact, becoming increasingly clear with each confrontation with error, is a wonder far greater than healing the sick or making the blind see.

Add to this the fact that many priests, bishops, cardinals, and popes not only lived very bad lives opposed to Catholic teaching, but rejected many Catholic doctrines, or simply did not believe them. Any purely human institution would long since have been dissolved, or suffered inner divisions and contradictions that would have been reflected in its creeds and official teachings. (THE PERSECUTION OF ORTHODOXY)

Grace and peace,



TOm said...

My family is still out of town, so I thought I might offer a tiny bit on this article.
My sedavacantist friend just send me a youtube video where I can listen about the dangers of being an ex-Catholic. I will likely listen and tell him that I like everyone who was born after 1958 cannot really be called an ex-Catholic per his view as there hasn’t been a Pope since then and what has been taught to “Catholics” is not really Catholicism (per his view).
I am a LDS. I have previously thought that the Catholicism of Catholic Answers made the strongest case to be weighed against the restorationism claim of the CoJCoLDS. I lean that direction today, but I think that Pope Francis is WEAKENING the case for Catholicism made by Catholic Answers.
I will offer four broad contours of Catholicism.
1. There is the liberal Catholicism of the parish of my youth. John XXIII Catholic Community we called ourselves. I think there was some controversy because John XXIII was not a saint in 1983 or so when we started. It is possible that our name was not what we called ourselves or something (I was pretty young). Anyway, the Archbishop and my parish priest had some conflict because the Archbishop was very conservative. I think there are folks who advocate for female priesthood in this parish. I know that they are comfortable with LDS and Pagans taking the Eucharist. Lots of very liberal things. They are fans of Pope Francis and his papacy makes their brand of Catholicism a stronger possibility. One of its main weakness is that there is little regard for the idea that God’s church is infallible.
2. Catholic Answers has offered a conservative read of Vatican II that aligns with previous councils, but that fully accepts Vatican II. They argue long and effectively for the infallibility of the church and thus the irreformability of the church. Occasionally, I think they do not see developments in historical Catholicism because they read orthodoxy back into most ECF statements. Karl Keating wrote an article where he suggested it was important for Pope Francis to reply to the concerns expressed from the “Dubia Cardinals.” While there was talk of divorced and remarried Catholics partaking of the sacrament 3 or so years ago, Jimmy Akin expressed concern. Today, as best I can tell most folks like Tim Staples at Catholic Answers are opposed to the cardinals and their actions. Pope Francis right or wrong in his views has made the Catholicism of Catholic Answers less compelling by my flawed intellectual weighing.
3. Vatican II rejecters who believe the Pope is still the Pope. Clergy in this group are often members of SSPX (Society of Saint Pius X). This is the position I think of when I think of Rory. I am not sure if this position is stronger or weaker today because of Pope Francis. Surely some of the words Pope Francis offers have moved many in the church in a more liberal direction than even Vatican II. But I think the SSPX folks have been very willing to call out egregious things done by the Pope and yet still maintain that he is a valid Pope. I am not sure what the Pope has to do or say before virtually all SSPX folks become sedavacantists. But according to my sedavacantist friend (who started in an SSPX parish) that path has ALWAYS been the logical progression for these folks. He also claims many are moving this way now (though I suspect many is 2-3x per year and is still a tiny fraction of Catholics.
4. Sedavacantist who believe there is no Pope (the chair is empty). I have a friend from Intel who held this view before Pope Francis. As best I can tell, Pope Francis speaking as if he can change the consequences for adultery or the conditions when adultery occurs make the Sedavacantist position stronger. ALL I thought I knew from Catholic Answers Catholicism would have indicated to me such would NEVER happen.
So, I think the previously strongest case for Catholicism (#2) is weaker because of Pope Francis. I think #1 and #4 have become stronger because of Pope Francis.

cont ...

TOm said...

I doubt I would cease to be Catholic because of Pope Francis. Instead, I would say to myself what I say to some LDS who begin to think that something they KNEW about Mormonism was not really true. “May we all be disillusioned, because who would want to be illusioned.” Or what Cardinal Newman said, “10000 problems do not a doubt make.” I have long felt Catholic Answers neglected to embrace the degree of development necessary to get from the Apostles to today, perhaps this is just further evidence that development happens in ways RADICALLY different than I thought, Newman thought, or Catholic Answers previously thought. Or perhaps it means that the Sedavacantist have a stronger position than the other three do? I really do not know.
There is a thread on MADB that celebrates the Pope as better than the LDS leaders because he is compassionately changing the Catholic Church in ways that conservative old Mormon men do not. I said:
That being said LDS have continued revelation AND LDS have a pragmatic streak that has ALWAYS (as best I can tell) been rejected within Catholicism. Pope Francis would be a kind and caring LDS leader. If he could follow God's will and believe that he can receive revelation, then he would be a great LDS Bishop, Stake President, and probably Prophet. In addition to this LDS do not believe the CoJCoLDS is infallible. So if something like the priesthood ban (blacks or woman) is CHANGED, that can be a move towards greater light and truth.
Francis, as a Pope however, rejects continuing revelation and explains what he is doing is because of his deep sense of pastoral care for the situations he hopes to heal. Absent revelation this type of doctrinal meandering IMO is very dangerous. While Papal infallibility is a very recent dogma, the Catholic Church has taught that it (the Church) is infallible and there are irreformable doctrines. One cannot have doctrinal CHANGE and have infallible doctrine before and after the CHANGE.
Pastoral care is essential for all who interact with each other, but I worship a God who loves and reproves. I know because I have been reproved before and I am ALWAYS loved even when I don't entirely FEEL like it. Pastoral care cannot supersede truth. Tough love is real love.

Well, I would like to hear what folks think about the article and the four versions of Catholicism. Has Pope Francis made the case for Catholicism stronger or weaker?
Charity, TOm

Rory said...

The following is brief and simplistic, but helpful I hope. There are nuances but for the most part I hold to the following: Sedevacantists are in agreement with the conservatives (Catholic Answers). They both hold that if the pope is wrong about anything, he cannot be pope. This leads conservatives to defend the undefendable. It leads sedevacantists to deny the papacy. There are better ways, compatible with Catholic Tradition, to approach the problem of Pope Francis.

Rory said...

Hey Tom,

I object to your saying that #3,(me)"rejects" Vatican II. What about the popes? I believe what Pope Paul VI said about Vatican II. I believe what Card. Ratzinger (the future Pope Benedict XVI) said about Vatican II. If that means I "reject" Vatican II, so be it. They expressly disavow infallibility.

Those who "accept" Vatican II (avowing infallibility) reject what the popes (since John XXIII) have said. The promulgating pope, Paul VI, didn't even believe Vatican II was infallible. Why should I? I don't see any indication that any pope since John XXIII believed Vatican II is infallible, including Pope Francis. As far as I can see, I agree with every pope since the Council, about the Council, in this respect.

Show me where Catholic Tradition teaches that every word of every ecumenical council is infallible. There have been errors in ecumenical councils before Vatican II. Popes have promoted error (not as egregiously) before Pope Francis. Neither Vatican II, nor Pope Francis, are phenomena without precedent.

This blog site (Articuli Fidei) has an article that shows an error in an ecumenical council. My recollection is that it is the Council of Florence where there is a clear mistake regarding the matter for Holy Orders. Pius XII, (who everybody accepts as a pope) corrects the mistake in the 20th Century.

Whether they are Mormon or Atheist, Protestant or Catholic, virtually everybody that isn't a part of Tom's #3 refuse to accept the church's nuanced teaching about ecumenical councils and papal infallibility. All sides except #3 seem to believe, and act as though it is all or nothing. That supposedly makes #3 schismatic.

Cardinal Newman believed in the limited doctrine of papal infallibility, as expressed at Vatican I, and believed by #3. But he seemed to have prophetic insight as to how it would be misunderstood and harmful to the church and the world in our age. He thought that its promulgation was true, but imprudent. He knew that misunderstood truth is no better than understood error. As a #3, I am with Cardinal Newman because I think he is with the popes of yesterday and even today.


TOm said...

Hello Rory,
I did not mean to impute to you something you reject. I think the correction you offer means that I should not have singled you out in a way to which you would take exception. I understand your point to be that Paul VI claimed the Vatican II was not an infallible council so when you say it was not an infallible council you are in good company. That being said, I understand that you go beyond saying it was not infallible and say it contains errors. Perhaps you do not claim it contains errors and I misunderstand. I am unaware of any Pope or Cardinal that has claimed Vatican II contains errors. I could be wrong on this too (and thus on both counts).
I have imbibed of much of Catholic Answers. I have failed to discover when and how the 21 Ecumenical Councils were declared to be infallible like the Pope. The closest I have come is that it seems to be a common teaching from fairly early in the Church that the Church is infallible and contains all truth. Vatican I built from the accepted position that the church was infallible to the infallibility of the Pope.
I have had Catholics tell me that one of the flaws of Mormonism is that it changes and therefore is not a possessor of all truth like Catholicism. Sometimes these folks might even acknowledge that doctrine develops, but that is different than changing due to possible past errors.
I am unfamiliar with the Council of Florence error corrected by Pius XII. I am not sure I followed David’s blog through this discussion, but I am sure I do not remember it. It however seems to me to be quite a departure from the typical Catholic narrative I hear, to claim there was an error in an EC, concerning faith and morals.
I have spoken with you about the idea of a “fatal flaw.” An irreformable church that infallibility possesses all truth is subject to a “fatal flaw” in ways that a church that is growing towards God via fallible revelatory interaction is not. I am unsure how you are not making the Catholic Church into a mature version of the CoJCoLDS. Maybe the Catholic Church makes mistakes in its Conciliar definition concerning holy orders that is corrected centuries later by Pius XII. Maybe the Catholic Church makes mistakes in its teaching on not marrying two different people (with a divorce ending the first) and now Pope Francis is in the process of fixing it. How do you know Pope Francis is tearing down truth, if the Council of Florence had errors that Pope Pius XII tore down?
I think Pope Francis has been an aid to the Sedavacantist and the liberal Catholics. If Pope Francis teaches Catholicism, then there is more to the liberal Catholic position than I previously thought. If the man called Pope Francis is unaware or unconcerned about how far he departs from all that Catholics have always called Tradition, then perhaps he is a usurper and the chair is empty. I would suggest the type of focus upon Tradition necessary to speak as the Catholic Answers crowd speaks or as the SSPX crowd speaks is not the type of focus Pope Francis appears to have on Tradition. If Pope Francis is in reality the Pope he has a very different view of Catholicism than Catholic Answers or SSPX folks do and he is the Pope and has the support of volumes of Cardinals. Would it not be reasonable for a non-Catholic to conclude that perhaps Catholic Answer and SSPX folks maybe do not understand Tradition well at all. I slight caveat to this is that there are four cardinals responsible for the Dubia and a few other cardinals that APPEAR to be in some conflict with the Pope.
So to summarize the above, I think I offer two things for you to consider.
1. How do you know that Vatican II and Pope Francis are not correcting all that faulty Tradition of old?
2. Isn’t it hard for someone not committed to some version of Catholic truth claims to decide they should embrace a set of Catholic truth claims that the Pope and most of the cardinals SEEM to reject, namely the Traditional view espoused in one form or another by Catholic Answers, SSPX folks, or Sedavacantist?

TOm said...

Again, I am a non-Catholic. I was a fan of JPII, thought the Catholic Answers view of Catholicism during his papacy was the strongest view of Catholicism, and I still concluded that there was too much to the CoJCoLDS that could not be explained by Catholicism and Catholic Answers. Thus, being a LDS was IMO then a more reasoned position. While some non-Catholic Answers position are more likely than they were before Pope Francis, I do not think any view is as strong as what I considered this JPII-CA to be.
During the time from JPII to Amoris Laetitia the CoJCoLDS declared that children of same sex couples could not be baptized until they were 18. I would have never thought of such a thing. But part of accepting the authority of the CoJCoLDS is that I make a place for the revelatory teaching (called “the will of the Lord through His prophet” by Elder Nelson) that led to this position. After learning more and thinking about it I do not even have large concerns. Surely some of this is the product of the fact that I have already made a commitment to the CoJCoLDS. And as I said, I do not anticipate I would depart Catholicism because Pope Francis is doing whatever it is he is doing. But, from the outside (and as someone who is not in favor of liberalizing many aspects of Catholicism or Mormonism) Pope Francis is moving the needle away from Catholicism being God’s church in my fallible opinion.
Charity, TOm

David Waltz said...

Hi Tom,

Very informative posts, and some great questions. Though I feel qualified to discuss doctrinal development within the Catholic Tradition, the same does not hold true concerning the issue of infallibility. It has been suggested to me that the RCC has not provided a detailed, fully formed, infallible understanding, of infallibility. This may be true, and if so, it would mean that my reflections on infallibility are in need of further development.

With that said, this ongoing discussion between you and Rory is a teaching moment for me. I can see that good deal of deeper reflection and study is needed for me to assess all that is being brought to my attention. I am still in engaged in some intense research for that upcoming post on early Mormon origins I have been promising. I had hoped to have published that post by now, but know in my heart that it would have been a rash decision to have done so—when I do finally make that post, I want to make sure I have a high degree of confidence that its content will not lead to regrets on my part.

Looking forward to Rory's answers to your questions.

Grace and peace,


Rory said...

Tom, hi.

I don't take exception to the perception you and everybody have. I am glad you said it, for it gives an opportunity to show how I accept Vatican II as promulgated, while conservatives abuse it.

The conservative abuses/rejects the Council by acting like and apparently believing that every word must be true simply because it was an ecumenical council. They refuse to listen to the pope. And as you have even discovered, the Church has never taught that every word of every ecumenical council is true. Good night, it isn't Scripture.

Rory said...

The article I mentioned that is referenced in our blog host's topics is written by a SSPX priest who is critiquing a conservative prelate assigned to the Ecclesia Dei Commission in the early part of the decade. This commission was founded by Pope John Paul II when Abp. Lefebvre consecrated four bishops, in 1988, assuring the survial of the Society of St. Pius after his death. Abp. Lefebvre was in his early 80's. Here is what Fr. Francois Laisney writes:

"Then almost at the very beginning of his interview, the Archbishop [diNoia] states a new principle, which can nowhere be found in proper Catholic theology, viz. that “the Councils cannot be led into error”, as if every single words [sic] of every single document of every single ecumenical council was exempt from all error. The Church never taught such a doctrine."

It sure sounds like you agree with the Church and Fr. Laisney, of the Society of St. Pius X, and me, about ecumenical council infallibility, Tom. You said: "I have failed to discover when and how the 21 Ecumenical Councils were declared to be infallible like the Pope. The closest I have come is that it seems to be a common teaching from fairly early in the Church that the Church is infallible and contains all truth." Same here! Along with Fr. Laisney, and you, I don't see it.

Here is the summary of that mistake I referenced at the Council of Florence from Fr. Laisney:

"There is a historical example illustrating my point: the Council of Florence (Dz 701) gave as the matter of the Sacrament of Holy Orders the transmission of the chalice – this was the opinion of St Thomas Aquinas – but Pope Pius XII later judged definitely that the matter of that Sacrament was the imposition of the hands of the Bishop (Dz 2301). So unless one claims that the matter of sacraments can change – which no proper theologian would claim, since the matter is part of the very essence of the sacrament, over which the Church has no power, since it is established by Our Lord Jesus Christ Himself – then here you have a simple statement of a Council which happens to be incorrect."

the entire article is available here:

Liberal Catholics don't care if there is a break with the past, but we agree with them that Vatican II represents such a break. The famous comment about Vatican II being "1792", (the French Revolution) in the Church" comes to mind. Conservative Catholics care if there was a break with the past, and we agree with them about that. God bless the conservatives, we don't want to take that away from them. They just need to have a more nuanced look at infallibility.

Rory said...

I have spoken with you about the idea of a “fatal flaw.” An irreformable church that infallibility possesses all truth is subject to a “fatal flaw” in ways that a church that is growing towards God via fallible revelatory interaction is not.

Yes, I see what you mean. This is why uninformed opinions that exaggerate the limits of infallibility are so harmful, and as alluded to before, the probable reason Cardinal Newman was against the definition of papal infallibility.

I am unsure how you are not making the Catholic Church into a mature version of the CoJCoLDS.

I trust your judgement about whether the emerging picture you see has such a resemblance. My problem with your statement would be that you seem to attribute an inventiveness to me, as though I am somehow diminishing what Catholics are supposed to believe about infallibility. You are correct in doubting me. I am never infallible! If I am opposing Catholic teachings on infallibility, it would be a kindness if anyone can point it out to me.

There is no question that this question is in the interest of non-Catholics who would be pleased to find "fatal flaws", as you have pointed out. In my opinion, fatal flaws depend on exaggeration of the defined limits of papal infallibility, and assuming there are no limits to the infallibility of an ecumenical council. Of course, a "flaw" that depends on misunderstanding of Catholic teaching, is by no means fatal to Catholic claims.

Maybe the Catholic Church makes mistakes in its Conciliar definition concerning holy orders that is corrected centuries later by Pius XII. Maybe the Catholic Church makes mistakes in its teaching on not marrying two different people (with a divorce ending the first) and now Pope Francis is in the process of fixing it. How do you know Pope Francis is tearing down truth, if the Council of Florence had errors that Pope Pius XII tore down?

Subsequent to the proclamation of the Bull, Exultate Deo, of Nov. 22, 1439, liturgical research established that in the Roman Rite, the passing of the instruments, a beautiful part of the ceremony, but not its essential matter, was added about 500 years before the Council of Florence. I think it is an understandable mistake in the context of this bull which gives sketch outlines of the church's teaching on each of the seven sacraments. It is by no means a treatise on the subject of the essential matter for the Sacrament of Holy Orders. It seems that many Latin Rite Catholics, and even St. Thomas Aquinas, came to assume that this part of the ceremony was essential. But the point is, we cannot hold that ecumenical councils are divinely protected from making mistakes.

Rory said...

---continued from above.

Pope Pius XII gave clear and concise arguments for why we may know with certainty that rather than the passing of the instruments, the essential matter for holy orders is the laying on of the hands of the bishop. The laying on of hands has always been done continuously in every time and every place for valid holy orders. The passing of the instruments did not start until the Church was almost a thousand years old. Further, the passing of the instruments had never been part of the ceremonial for many of the Eastern Rite churches, including those who have returned or never left communion with Rome. The Church has always known and accepted the validity of Eastern Orders, even among the Orthodox who have separated, and who ordain by laying on of hands only.

So in 1947, this question is raised perhaps with a view to know if it should be an obstacle to future reunion with the Orthodox. The way that Pius XII shows that this should not be an obstacle is by demonstrating that the imposition of hands of the bishop has always been practiced in every time and place for the entire history of the Church.

Does it seem likely to you that Pope Francis can explain similarly how the Sacrament of Matrimony as he seems to be explaining it, has always been practiced and taught in every time and place? It has caused great confusion among the faithful. Many, take the position that the pope's words are unclear, or misunderstood, and continue to take the same position as before regarding divorce and remarriage. Many others have understood the pope to be saying that it is not serious sin, and people ion this circumstance should receive Holy Communion. But unlike Pius XII, Francis seems unwilling to clarify. As you have seen, two of the four "Dubia Cardinals", who requested a clarification have died without an answer.

I think we will die all before Francis, or any of his successors could possibly explain how his position is Catholic, everywhere and at all times having been practiced in the way he is apparently advocating. It appears to me that Pope Francis does not even care what the Church has always taught. Pope Pius XII showed that the passing of the instruments was not universally practiced and that imposition of hands has been universally practiced. Pope Francis needs to affirm that his teachings on marriage and divorce is compatible with what has been universal (Catholic). Until he does that, the faithful must not follow him.

Rory said...


I have carefully reviewed the rest of what you wrote. I think I can give you a summary answer to most of your ideas and questions. I admit that Pope Francis is a scandal. I agree that it tends to the support of liberal and sedevacantist parties.
I think it is doubtful, but possible that Francis is not the pope. This would be if, as some have alleged, that Pope Benedict resigned under duress.

Popes can teach error. I have always believed that as a Catholic, and it is an especially necessary part of our Catholic faith today. Can a pope solemnly teach error by virtue of his succession to the chair of St. Peter, to confirm the brethren? No. But I know of no Catholic theologian of any rank or status in the Church who would suggest that Pope Francis' encyclicals are an expression of papal infallibility. Nor are his airplane comments!

I would not live at any other time in the history of the Catholic Church. If you were a faithful, happy Catholic a thousand years ago or one hundred years ago, knowing that the Church would experience a decline beginning in the second half of the 20th Century with a nosedive in the 21st Century, would it cause disbelief? God forbid! There is nothing in your faith that affirms that what we are experiencing today isn't possible. So why should it have such an effect on you today? It would be because you have forgotten that you are united as brothers and sisters in Christ with the communion of saints who are in heaven cheering you to victory as you grope your way to where they await, at the finish line that they have crossed. It would be unreasonable for you to become so caught up in discouraging contemporary events in the church and in the world, that it would make you a disbeliever. Faithful Catholics must always put the times in which they live in to the context of all Redemption history. It is not less important in our day.

The last living visionary of the Miracle of the Sun at Fatima was Sr. Lucia. She was told by our Lady during the papacy of Pope Pius XII that unless the consecration of Her Immaculate Heart to Russia was made as requested, that among other worldwide calamities, the errors of Russia would spread throughout the world, and the church would suffer a diabolical disorientation. A letter from Sr. Lucia was to be opened which explains this to whoever was the pope in 1960. It is well documented that Pope John XXIII read this letter, and returned it to its place, saying that this was "not for our times".

John XXIII had other ideas about how to help Russia. Instead of the simple ceremony requested by Our Blessed Mother through Sr. Lucia, which would take about five minutes, John XXIII called an arguably disastrous council known as Second Vatican II that lasted almost four years. A lesser known fact is that in exchange for a representation of Russian Orthodox bishops at the Council, the Soviet Union made the pope agree to suppress the documents made by a conciliar preparatory commission which dealt with the subject of communism. These documents were only made public last week.

I wouldn't believe in the story of Fatima except for the remarkable accuracy of what has been prophesied. Far from being inclined to leave the Church because of Francis, or declare myself a sedevacantist, I can easily believe that there is a diabolical disorientation in the church herself, incredible as it probably seemed to John XXIII in 1960. Vatican II is almost passe now. The errors of Russia seem to have found a place in the heart of a pope who is proud to associate with communists. Whether we be many or few, faithful Catholics have never found greater reasons to be fiercely and confidently attached to their faith, in the year or Our Lord, 2017.

Rory said...

I have a final comment, again from good Dom Gueranger, whose great work, The Liturgical Year, began in 1840, and was completed by his spiritual sons in the year 1900. This is not prophesy, but boy does it seem like they foresaw the debacle that began when John XXIII denied that the message of our Lady of Fatima was for his time. The epistle for the Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost is taken from St. Paul to the Eph. 5: "See, therefore how you walk circumspectly, not as unwise, but as wise, redeeming the time because the days are evil. Wherefore, become not unwise, but understanding what is the will of God." Of this portion, we read:

"As the nuptials of the Son of God approach their final completion, there will be, also, on the side of hell, a redoubling of rage against the bride, with a determination to destroy her...he will turn his fury against the last children of the New Eve, who will have the perilous honour of those final battles...

It is then, more than at all previous times that the faithful will have to remember the injunction given to us in to-day's Epistle. They will have to comport themselves with that circumspection, which he enjoins, taking every possible care to keep their understanding, no less than their heart, in those evil days. Supernatural light will, in those days, not only have to withstand the attacks of the children of darkness, who will put forward their false doctrines; it will, moreover, be minimized and falsified by the very children of the light yielding on the question of principles; it will be endangered by the hesitations, and the human prudence, of those who are called far-seeing men. Many will ignore the master-truth, that the Church never can be overwhelmed by any created power. If they do remember that our Lord has promised to uphold His Church even to the end of the world, they will still believe that they do a great service to the good cause by making certain politically clever concessions, not weighed in the balance of the sanctuary. Those future worldly-wise people will forget that our Lord needs no shrewd schemes to help Him to keep His promise; they will entirely overlook this most elementary consideration, that the co-operation which Jesus deigns to accept at the hands of His servants, never could consist in the disguising of those grand truths which constitute the power and beauty of the bride. They will forget the Apostle's maxim, laid down in his Epistle to the Romans, that to conform oneself to this world, to attempt an impossible adaptation of the Gospel to a world that is unchristianized, is not the means for proving what is the good, and the acceptable, and the perfect will of God. So that it will be a thing of great and rare merit, in many an occurrence of those unhappy times, merely to understand what is the will of God, as our Epistle expresses it.

The Liturgical Year, Dom Prosper Gueranger, Vol 11, pp. 426, 427, St. Bonaventure Publications, (2000) (Italics were not mine. The author italicizes those expressions which are taken directly from the readings for the day. I started to bold some passages, and then decided not to because the whole thing would be bolded.)

Rory said...

I do not say I am experiencing the "perilous honour of those final battles". Nor am I confident that I am a worthy warrior. But I have the gift of faith, of confidence in the greatness and goodness of our God, whose laws are now openly despised in the public forum. Whether from worldly words, or to their silent acquiescence to the spirit of our age, one fears that many of the prelates of Christ's Church doubt the laws of God in the private forum.

If it is the end, we have another assurance from our Lady of Fatima. She said that the pope (a sedevacantist also forgets Fatima) would make the consecration to Russia as requested, but that it would be late. When it does happen, her Immaculate Heart will triumph. I do not know everything which that means. In fact, I am pretty sure we know little. I am a fearful soldier by all counts. With God's help, I would not miss having done my duty as part of a remnant army of stragglers who stood firm for her when it seemed she was vanquished.

My good Lord and Saviour, I believe in the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church, looking forward with confident joy to the inevitable day of the Church's grand triumph, and the further establishment of your kingdom in the hearts of all men, through the Heart of your Immaculate Virgin Mother. Thank you for the precious gift of faith. May I never take my faith for granted, and may it increase more and more.


Thanks Dave and Tom. You have both been important instruments in my journey. God bless.


Rory said...

Hey Tom,

I keep hearing so much of this Fr. Weinandy from you, but other than that he has never crossed my radar...until this afternoon. He wrote a letter to the Holy Father which has now been made public. I don't see how the most avid supporter of Pope Francis could take issue with his pointed, but reverent, evaluation of this pontificate. (They won't take issue. It is more effective to ignore.)

Here is the thing. Us folks who are associated with the Society of St. Pius X are not unfamiliar with believing there is an emergency in the Church. We date it from 1965, the end of the Council. But other good folk are beginning to come our way, even if they do not know it. Pope Francis is the fruit of Vatican II, and even though they can swallow Vatican II, Francis is too big of a camel to swallow even for conservative Vatican II, "obedient" Novus Ordo like your Fr. Weinandy. I admit, Vatican II is much easier to swallow than Pope Francis. In a way, Francis is an "I told you so" moment for SSPX folk, as conservatives are being forced to believe there is an emergency. They are going to have to ask themselves if true obedience to God is always equivalent to obedience to the pope.

I can see God bringing great good out of this pontificate. Of course! It didn't just spring out of nowhere. Fr. Weinandy is upset. What will he do? Will he obey if his bishop tells him to give Holy Communion to a someone living in adultery. I think not. Praise God. He is only learning that Abp. Lefebvre was right all along, in the early 70's. is what has been made public from Fr. Weinandy, God bless him:

David Waltz said...

Hi Rory,

Thanks much for the link—very informative!

For a number of years I was a subscriber to the magazine edition of The Catholic World Report; but after my retirement, I had to cut expenses, and it was one of my losses. What a pleasant surprise to find out that the online edition is now quite comprehensive. I have added their website to my Catholic links here at AF, and have become a subscriber to their free newsletter.

BTW, did you notice the following article:

London exorcist-All of society is subject to demonic deception

For me, the contribution certainly fits into the genre of the title of this thread: Food for thought...

Grace and peace,


Rory said...

That was fast. The enemies of Christ are "redeeming the time". Their leader, the devil, probably senses that there is little of it (time) left. Fr. Weinandy's letter was made public yesterday. He is no longer wanted by the United States "Conference of Catholic Bishops" today. Coincidence?

for the liberal take:

Crux speaks of him resigning, like it was his idea. Crux did not interview him but Catholic World Report did. Here is what they wrote:

"However, the USCCB asked him to resign from his current position as consultant to the bishops, and he has submitted his resignation. In making such a request, the USCCB, it would appear, reinforces Fr. Weinandy’s very point about fearfulness and lack of transparency."

Rory said...

I said above that the Francis supporters would ignore Fr. Weinandy's letter. Obviously, they "took notice" of Fr. Weinandy's letter, otherwise they wouldn't have asked for his resignation. I meant that they would stonewall. No replies to such impertinence. Fr. Weinandy has exposed himself as one of "the Pharisees" who still thinks doctrine is important.

The Catholic Church can dialogue with Jews and Muslims and witch doctors; the Church can celebrate Luther and 500 years of Protestantism; the Church can reevaluate one of the four sins that cry to heaven for vengeance. Atheism is not an obstacle to going to heaven. After all, mercy, right? Who is the pope to judge?

But if you are a Catholic who believes what the Church has always taught, you are beyond dialogue. No discussions with you are necessary. Ecumenism extends to EVERYBODY except Catholics who believe what the Church has always taught.

Rory said...

More links associated with the ouster of Fr. Thos. Weinandy, OFM, related to his horrid letter to Pope Francis:

TOm said...

Hello Rory,

I think I have finally caught up including reading most of Edward Feser’s blog entries linked on the other thread. Catholics at Catholic Answers had linked me to his thoughts, I wonder what they think of his current blog entries.

I see you answering that Pius XXII looked to the historical record and determined that Florence was advocating for something that was a recent (less than 500-600 years old) development not an “always and everywhere” belief. Others have claimed that Florence was not speaking concerning “faith and morals” and was thus not infallible in this utterance. I think I need to recognize this is quite complex and ruminate upon it more. This includes a danger for a Catholic of “private judgment” but the need for judgment of one’s own self just the same. And a recognition that a non-Catholic cannot hold the same concern against “private judgment” that Catholic should.

Concerning Weinandy, you should know that I wouldn’t steer you wrong! Of course, I actual think David recommended Weinandy to me so really it was his extensive reading that directed me to Weinandy (I think).

When I said earlier:

I doubt I would cease to be Catholic because of Pope Francis. Instead, I would say to myself what I say to some LDS who begin to think that something they KNEW about Mormonism was not really true. “May we all be disillusioned, because who would want to be illusioned.” Or what Cardinal Newman said, “10000 problems do not a doubt make.”

I was inarticulately saying something related to what you a Catholic said here much better:

My good Lord and Saviour, I believe in the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church, looking forward with confident joy to the inevitable day of the Church's grand triumph, and the further establishment of your kingdom in the hearts of all men, through the Heart of your Immaculate Virgin Mother. Thank you for the precious gift of faith. May I never take my faith for granted, and may it increase more and more.

I think that is beautiful.

It is far from impossible that the current crisis will resolve itself towards the view you have espoused for many years. And it is also not impossible that it will move in a different direction and your view will be just as true before or after that move. I will keep reading and thinking!

Charity, TOm