Monthly Archives: May 2017

St. Joan of Arc – Maid of Orleans

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St. Joan of Arc in the French Quarter, New Orleans.

On this Feast of my Heroine, I’d first like to share some photos of some rare treasures of the great Saint. A couple weeks ago, I was shopping at an Estate Sale, which I do very much of when I stumbled upon many articles of St. Joan of Arc. A blessed day indeed! These are the treasures I bought:

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Other statues and pictures of her:

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All hail to the Maid of Orleans!

Nearly 500 years after her death, St. Joan of Arc is vindicated and raised to the honors of the Altar, she who faithfully obeyed the will of God, even to her very death at the hands of wicked leaders in the Church.  May she be an example to us to persevere in the fight for the goodness, truth and beauty of tradition, in the face of all oppositions and attack!  The King of Heaven awaits our faithfulness!

Pope Pius XII for the 500th anniversary of the rehabilitation of St. Joan of Arc, June 25, 1956:

“Do raise your eyes, beloved sons, you worthy members of a nation that glories in the title of Eldest Daughter of the Church, and consider the great examples that came before you… Down on your knees before the God Who is expecting you in His Tabernacle, renew your profession of faith, promise Him anew your most perfect faithfulness, and be assured that in so doing, you will answer your calling of men, of Christians, of Frenchmen… And if, for one moment, you might deem that iniquity, mendacity, and corruption reign supreme, you will but need to keep silent for a split-second and raise your eyes towards Heaven, to imagine that the legions of Joan of Arc are coming back with unfurled standards to save your homeland and to save the faith.

The Litany of St. Joan of Arc
Composed by Louis, Bishop of Saint Dié

Lord, have mercy on us!
Jesus Christ, have mercy on us!
Lord, have mercy on us!
Jesus Christ, hear us!
Jesus Christ, graciously hear us!

Our Heavenly Father, Who art God, have mercy on us!
Son, Savior of the world, Who art God, have mercy on us!
Holy Spirit, Who art God, have mercy on us!
Holy Trinity, Who art God, have mercy on us!

Holy Mary, virgin Mother of God, pray for us.
Our Lady of the Assumption, principal patron of France, pray for us.
Saint Michael the Archangel, patron and special protector of France, pray for us.

Saint Catherine of Alexandria, virgin and Martyr, pray for us.
Saint Margaret of Antioch, virgin and Martyr, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, chosen by God at Domremy, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, informed [of her mission] by Saint Michael, the Archangel and his Angels, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, compliant to the call of God, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, confidant [in] and submissive to her voices, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, model of family life and labor, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, faithfully devoted to Our Lady, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, who delighted in the Holy Eucharist, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, model of generosity in the service to God, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, example of faithfulness to the Divine vocation, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, model of union with God in action, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, virgin and soldier, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, model of courage and purity in the field [of battle], pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, compassionate towards all who suffer, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, the pride of Orleans, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, glory of Reims, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, liberator of the Country, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, abandoned and imprisoned at Compiegne, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, pure and patient in thy prison, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, heroic and valiant before thy judges, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, alone with God at the hour of torment, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, Martyr of Rouen, pray for us.

Saint Joan or Arc and Saint Therese of Lisieux patronesses of France, pray for us.
All the Saints of France, intercede for us.

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
ave mercy on us, Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
graciously hear us, Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,
have mercy on us, Lord.

Saint Joan of Arc, pray for us, that we may become worthy of the promises of Our Savior Jesus Christ.

Let us pray.
Oh God, Who hast raised up in an admirable manner, the virgin of Domremy, Saint Joan of Arc, for the defense of the faith and [our] country, by her intercession, we ask Thee that the Church [may] triumph against the assaults of her enemies and rejoice in lasting peace; through Jesus Christ Our Lord. Amen.

St. Joan of Arc, my Heroine and Patroness, intercede for us and watch over our apostolate here at Damsel of the Faith.

~Damsel of the Faith

How Feminism is tearing apart Society

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Recommended article for our readers: The growth of Tradition in the Midwest! http://www.wcpo.com/news/insider/masses-in-latin-nuns-in-white-habits-draw-parishioners-from-as-far-as-alaska-to-small-walton-church

Since the early 20th century, with an explosion in the radical 1960’s, the revolutionaries have waged an all-out war on women in the name of “feminism”.  These grave errors have enveloped the West and the end result is the masculinization of women and the feminization of men.  As the woman’s duty is to be the heart and soul of both her own family and the Christian family as a whole, she is necessary for a prosperous future of life and joy.  Without her, the world is nothing but an empty shell deprived of true substance.

The devil has made great progress in turning an institution of God upside down and the very essence of Marriage and the Family is now questioned in our age.  Unfortunately, even those who particularly ought to be defending this sacred plan of God have often compromised on the modern errors.  How could we deny the creeping influence of the feminist mindset in the structures of the Church itself?  May Our Lord strengthen us in this great battle and send us many more Christian men and women.

A sermon by Fr. Jules Belisle, SSPX:

My dear brethren,

When God created the world, He did it with order. He established a hierarchy among the created things in order that the universe be one, while being made of different beings. Creation is an image of God, and so God wanted to show His unity in creatures that would be necessarily limited, and so different, from Him. The keystone of this creation was man – not because he is the greatest creature (angels are better), but because He assumes in him all creation. In the Middle Ages, the theologians called man a microcosm (a little universe), as he joins in one being the spiritual and material worlds.

When man sinned, he destroyed that order. First in himself, the microcosm was no longer ordered to serve God, as man himself wanted to be his own god. The passions – material powers made to help the soul achieve its goal – were in rebellion with the will, and tended toward other objects than the right ones presented by the intelligence. This rebellion against God however had another consequence. Beings submitted to man started to revolt against him and the society of men was to be plagued by wars and dissension.

Today, this revolt of man against God caused by original sin continues, but along the centuries, it changed its tactic and sometimes its name. In our modern world, a manifestation of it that is most prevalent is feminism. Feminism is a word that is used for many things, but very often, when we hear the word we are thinking of ladies making a manifestation in the streets for the right to vote, or salary equality, and all these social demands, but that’s not exactly what feminism is. This is a manifestation of it, but it doesn’t show exactly what it is, because some of these demands are just and should be able to be done without any feminist ideology behind them.

What exactly is feminism, and why is it such a danger to all of us? Why is it something that, I would say, even the best of women (and men) in the world of today are tainted with? In order to do so, I would first like to present some quotes from feminists (in fact these are sentences from feminist men, not women). This gives us a little bit of an idea of exactly what is behind all this, and after that we will explain exactly what feminism is. “Feminism is about breaking down arbitrary barriers. I think about all the limitations of opportunity that people experience because of arbitrary differences like race or gender. Just because there’s an arbitrary rule, we’re not going to let you do certain things or be certain things. We’re going to limit your education and work, and commit violent attacks on you because of some arbitrary external characteristic.”

You can see here that for feminists, the first task is to make the gender difference an arbitrary one. Nature has nothing to do with the difference of men and women, it is as arbitrary as race. What a stupid thing to think! Every child knows that a boy and a girl are different – and not only on the physical level – but in our modern world in which common sense is destroyed by a false philosophy, this goes very well, especially when they insist on confusing the word `different’ with the word `unequal’.

Another quotation: “Feminism is at the cutting edge of nearly all major intellectual disciplines. Guys, if you don’t understand feminism, it’s not because it’s not true. It’s because you haven’t allowed yourself to think about it yet.”

This quote shows us that feminism is not firstly a political movement, but a way of thinking. The political aspect of feminism may be faltering, that doesn’t matter to them as long as people adopt their way of thinking. It is the “new idea” that will save the world from barbarism.

In a more Catholic vocabulary, what exactly is feminism? Feminism really is the ultimate manifestation of pride in front of God. Feminism is not a way to make a better world where men and women are equal, it’s in fact, having as a purpose, to make a world where both men and women are gods, that is the purpose of feminism. It is not a revolt of women against men because that really has no meaning. In the liberal society issued from the revolution, there were some injustices that had been created but they were the excuse for feminism, it was only to give the occasion to men and women to revolt another time against God. Feminism wants to make the order established by God in creation look arbitrary, in order to be able to replace it by its own “order.”

My dear brethren, if we want to free ourselves of feminism, we need to understand what exactly is the order of God in creation, and especially the relationship between men and women. As we have just said, creation is an image of God, a symbol of God. Symbolism in the world is something that is very important. God made the world as a symbol, as a sign of Himself, because the intellectual creatures that He put in this world, ourselves, are made to know Him. However, our intelligence is not able to grasp Him directly. So in order to help us to understand Him, to get to Him, He will put symbols, analogies of Himself in the world.

When God created Adam, the book of Genesis tells us that He made man in His image and likeness. Man represents God in creation, he represents the authority of God in creation, as he has been put at the head of the material world; but man is not God, it’s only a symbol, and in order to remind man that he is not a god, God created beside him, a companion, the woman. If you read Genesis carefully, God said, “Let’s make someone similar to man.” He doesn’t say that the woman is similar to God. He says that she’s similar to man. It’s obvious that if we look at the physiological side, we both share the same nature and so by that women also are an image of God; but see the symbol that God wants to put in the difference of gender. Here the woman is the image of the image of God, and so if woman is to be a companion submitted to man, it is to remind man in all his actions that he is to be submitted to God. If his image is submitted to him, he must be submitted to Whom he is the image also. So this submission that exists between man and woman, is an image, is a reminder to all of us that we must obey God.

However, we have to note that this submission is not a submission of all women to all men. Some women can have authority over men, that is not a problem. It is very important to see that the symbol must be common, but doesn’t need to be without exception. That will explain why in a Catholic society, even if normally women didn’t have a position of authority, it was not at all forbidden, and I would say it was not at all rare, to see women with authority. During the Middle Ages you find queens that had as much authority as kings, and very often when an artisan died, his widow took up the trade, and was doing exactly as he had been doing – that was not something rare at all. So you see that in these cases, Catholic society didn’t see this submission as being necessary. Where the submission of the woman to a man is really symbolic of our submission to God, is in the relationship of husband and wife. In a normal society, men and women will have different tasks, in order to take advantage of the different qualities of both genders, but that will suffer exceptions, as individuals are widely different and can sometimes have the qualities or the vocation of the other gender. (See the example of St. Joan of Arc). In marriage a distinct society is formed – the family – and this society needs hierarchy, and so God put in it the symbol of our submission by making the man head of the family and the woman his companion.

Feminism is bent to destroy that order and hierarchy, and so will try to replace it in society in order to be able to change it in the marriage. So first it will ask for “equality” in the society, telling us that both men and women are fitted to do anything. In order to foster that, it will give the example of the exceptions, and generalize it to all men and women. That step is mostly completed today, and you see the mess in which it has put our society. Incapable people get positions only because we cannot discriminate. This last word has become a bad word, while in fact it means to choose the best and let go of what is useless for the task at hand. I discriminate when I choose a hammer instead of a screwdriver to drive nails in a board. This concept is at the bottom of any organized society, and even today, in spite of the words, discrimination is still used. If not, it would be chaos.

Feminism will also try to destroy the order in marriage, by putting both partners equal in everything. It is true that husband and wife are equal in regard to the contract of marriage and so in regard to the marriage act, but the husband is the head of the family created by the contract, and so there is inequality. Inequality doesn’t mean oppression and slavery, it means a different place in the hierarchy of things. As St. Paul said, the sanctification of the wife is in motherhood, in having the stronger hand in the raising of children, while the man dedicates his life for his wife by working and providing for her and their children the means of life. It is sure that the wife can help in the income of the family and that the father will have to do something in the education of children, but they are not interchangeable. We would need another sermon to explain in detail the duties of both husband and wife.

After having destroyed the natural order, feminism will be able to implement a new order of things. It is here that the problem of feminism becomes visible, as it becomes quite divided. Some will be very radical, and will try to consider women the only good persons of society and promote the demotion of men; but all the flavours of feminine empowerment, and by a contrary reaction, all the flavours of male “liberation” will try to win the favour of the crowd. This is the chaos that we live in, and in fact, we can say that feminism is at the root of all the other “liberations” that are destroying society today, as the rights for homosexuality, pedophilea, etc.

My dear brethren, we have to fight to restore the natural order made by God, to fight to keep it in our own lives. This order is necessary for the symbolic reasons we have already seen. These symbols help us to know God better and so serve Him more lovingly. So man has to show not only the power of God by being in charge, but has also to show the virtues of God, to be really a new Christ, and especially in the relationship of marriage. Woman is to be the companion of man, to remind him that he is to be submitted to God, and that’s why in the marriage the wife obeys her husband, to remind men that they must obey God. It is why St. Paul asks women to wear a veil in the Church, to remind both men and women they have to be submitted to God, because they share the same nature as men.

Also the natural order and hierarchy is better for us , and so we need to restore it. God wants us to be saved, to go to heaven. For that, He promised to give us the tools to do it, the graces that we need, and one of these tools is our vocation. God gave us the particular blend of virtues and qualities to help us to succeed in a particular way of life. If we try to do something else, we are not damned, necessarily, but our salvation will be more difficult, as we will not have the tools to do a good job. A married man will have more chances to be saved by being a good husband, a real leader of his family in all fields, even the one of sanctification, than by being a wimp only interested in cars and pleasures, leaving all decisions and good examples to his wife. A wife will be more certain of her sanctification by obeying her husband and raising her children than by having a successful career, except if God shows her that it is His will for Her.

Finally, my dear brethren, let’s look at the example of the Blessed Virgin Mary to help us in this restoration of true Catholic thinking. You see, the Blessed Virgin Mary is a woman and She was submitted to God. What was Her mission? To be the companion of Jesus in the work of redemption, and in that She is submitted to Jesus, She will follow Him in the way of the Cross, but She still is above all men. You see the submission of Mary to Jesus doesn’t apply in Mary submitting to all men. Mary is not submitted to all men because She is Queen of all men. So by that we see that there are two different things here.

We have to remember that the real submission that exists between men and women is a symbol of a higher reality, as Mary is doing in Her mission but still is Queen of all men. So let’s ask Her to understand this, to understand this importance of showing respect to God in the way that He wants it. Ask Her the grace to understand God in these images that He put in the world – what God wants us to do on the supernatural level, He put on the natural one – to show us a little bit how to do this.

So let’s ask the Blessed Virgin Mary to help us, to give us the grace to react in this world, to react against this ideology that is destroying, in fact, the last order weakened by original sin: the order between men and women. Let’s ask Her the grace to reestablish not only that order but also all the other ones, the order of our passions to our intelligence, the order of ourselves to God.

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.

 

A STRONG CATHOLIC WOMAN’S MANIFESTO AGAINST FEMINISM (provided by Isabella De Vita) is another selection I wished to provide for our readers.  The tone is most assuredly strong, but a system of errors that has harvested a culture of death needs a strong remedy!  May all soldiers of Christ work to protect the Divine Plan of God for the world, for the sake of all of Christendom.

A challenge to all single men: It is time to declare WAR on the feminist-minded woman! It is time for a masculine push-back against this counterfeit order between men and women. Stop being passive! Step up and claim your rightful position! Learn to recognize the feminist as your enemy!

While single, do not date a feminist and do not marry one. You must decide now to only court traditional, family-oriented women who value their perfectly rightful and honored position in our society, and who embrace their feminine natures and roles.
Confront the illusion of ‘gender equality.’ This imbalance is not oppression, but rather, it is differences that should be celebrated. Do not reward or legitimize any woman who will not submit to Patriarchy!

The strongest sign of the decay of a nation is the feminization of men, and the masculinization of women, which has resulted from communist feminism. It is the cancer that is destroying families, adversely effecting our nations’ very important birth rates, corrupting moral integrity, destroying our economy, and wounding our children.

Time to lead the way, men, and to FIGHT back! If a woman does not respect you for standing for this necessary truth, she is a fool and she will reap the consequences. However, myself and all freedom-loving Christian women will respect and love you for it – and the sovereignty and stability of nations depend upon it.

Ladies: If this message ruffles your pretty little feathers. Good. Perhaps you have been harboring this destructive lie. There are, of course, ways that we, as women can, and should, join this battle. If you have been indoctrinated in the belief that the feminist movement is aimed at establishing more rights and legal protection, wise up, and fast!

Feminism is a FARCE and a poison. There is no ‘true feminism.’ There is no need to have a movement that defines itself as ‘pro-women’ and that causes division. We should be striving for the rights of all people.

It is time to repent of this Satanic, psychotic ideology. If we want to be truly empowered as women, we must take our place of honor that God has designed especially for us. This requires obedience, submission, and a servant’s heart toward our men. But there is favor, protection and blessings in doing so.

 

~Steven C., “Knight of Tradition”

 

 

 

 

Ascension of Our Lord

A Blessed Feast of the Ascension to all! He left us but promised to forever remain with us in the Holy Catholic Church.

Damsel of the Faith & Knight of Tradition

The following meditation is by Fr. Propser Gueranger:

The sun of the fortieth day has risen in all his splendor. The earth, which shook with gladness at the Birth of our Emmanuel (Ps. xcv. xcvi. xcvii.), now thrills with a strange emotion. The divine series of the mysteries of the God-Man is about to close. Heaven has caught up the joy of earth. The Angelic Choirs are preparing to receive their promised King, and their Princes stand at the Gates, that they may open them when the signal is given of the mighty Conqueror’s approach (Ibid. xxiii. 7). The holy souls, that were liberated from Limbo on the morning of the Resurrection, are hovering round Jerusalem, waiting for the happy moment when Heaven’s gate, closed by Adam’s sin, shall be thrown open, and they shall enter in company with their Redeemer: a few hours more, and then to Heaven! Meanwhile, our…

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The trampling of Our Lord on the floors of our churches- the result of Communion in the Hand

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http://archives.sspx.org/miscellaneous/communion_in_the_hand/is_communion_in_the_hand_a_sacrilege.pdf

This title picture will certainly move the souls of good Catholics very deeply.  It is with great difficulty that I even type these words having to look at this picture.  But as graphic as this representation is, it is the reality in so many of our Catholic churches today.  For this is the result of the placing of Our Lord’s Precious Body into the hands of the faithful.

The purpose of this post is not to discuss the history of the condemnation of Communion in the Hand in the Church, as I believe Michael Davies has already done an admirable job of it.  For those who would like more information, you might read his study: http://archives.sspx.org/miscellaneous/communion_in_the_hand/communion_in_the_hand_and_other_similiar_frauds-michael_davies.pdf

Suffice to say, even Pope John Paul II repeatedly spoke strongly against this abuse in the early days of his pontificate:

Dominicae Cenae (Feb. 1980): “To touch the sacred species and to distribute them with their own hands is a privilege of the ordained.”

Inaestimabile Donum (April, 1980): “It is not permitted that the faithful should themselves pick up the consecrated bread and the sacred chalice, still less that they should hand them from one to another.”

Unfortunately, this Pope decided to give in to the disobedient modernist clerics who had already begun to spread this practice after Vatican II.  As a result, we have countless Masses said each day where this abuse takes place.  This practice is even accepted in some diocesan Latin Masses and is one of the reasons priests of the SSPX and like-minded Orders must caution the faithful regarding these Masses, as discussed in a recent post.

There have been many studies examining the impact of placing a Host on the hand of a person.  Do all of the particles making up the appearance of the Host transfer successfully to the person’s mouth?  Remember, each particle is the Body of Our Lord Jesus Christ.

In my opinion, there is no study more revealing than the one performed by Charles St-George of Wheaton, Kansas in 2002.  It needs no introduction from me, as Mr. St-George provides a perfectly competent one in his letter to Pope John Paul II:

 

SUBJECT: REQUEST FOR FORGIVENESS OF SINS AND LIFTING OF EXCOMMUNICATION VERY SPECIALLY RESERVED TO HIS HOLINESS

His Holiness, Pope John Paul II Citta Del Vaticano, Roma, Italia

Pope John Paul II,

I, Charles Andre St-George, accuse myself of committing and participating in grievous and numerous outrages against the Most Blessed Sacrament from about 1980 to 1991. Please hear my plea and grant my requests.

First, I have only recently learned according to The Roman Catechism, p.233 “that in this Sacrament are contained not only the true body of Christ and all the constituents of a true body, such as bones and sinews, but also Christ, whole and entire” and further that, page 239 “the body of our Lord is contained whole and entire under the least particle of the bread.”

Second, I have only recently learned that according to The Catholic Concise Encyclopedia, p.153 “Excommunication is imposed according to the reservation as follows: (a) Acts reserved to the Holy See in a very special manner are: throwing away, taking or retaining for evil purposes the consecrated species;….”

I confess that I have thrown away or caused to be thrown away approximately 60,000 consecrated hosts from 1980 to 1991 and that I caused many of these hosts to be repeatedly trampled underfoot or otherwise desecrated. These grave sins were not motivated by formal hatred of God, but from a motive more banal–I did not care. This is what I did: I was an Extraordinary Minister of the Eucharist and I sometimes received our Lord in the hand instead of on the tongue, as well. As most communicants wanted to receive in the hand, I would gently place the Host in their palm. As proven in my attached scientific analysis conducted with the aid of my teenage son, Joseph, when one receives communion in the hand there are, on average, about four visible particles detaching from that same host. For this trial, I bought from Catholic Supply of St. Louis, Missouri, hosts advertised as: “We are pleased to offer by far the best altar bread. All of our breads have a carefully molded sealed edge which prevents crumbs.” We used the “best” and the test result was an average of 3.68 crumbs per communion.

I believe I may have distributed perhaps 15,000 hosts to communicants. It is reasonable to assume that this generated about 60,000 visible, though tiny particles. When I would receive communion in the hand, I would check my palm and sometimes find one or two or even more fragments of the sacred species. While I tried to immediately consume these by attracting them with the tip of my right index finger, I am confident that not all particles were always safely consumed. As Eucharistic Minister, in many thousands of Hosts placed in palms, I never once observed anyone else examining their palm or fingertips to see if there were any particles remaining.

So, what happened to these 60,000 particles containing our Lord and God of which I bear responsibility? Quite simply, they would eventually detach from the palms and fingertips of these communicants as they changed position to folded hands and the particles would drop to the floor, or be brushed against their clothing and detach, or find their way to destinations unknown. Most should be assumed to have dropped to the floor while still in the church. The above doctrine states that these particles were the fulness of Jesus our God just as surely as the large host which the priest consecrates for his own consumption! Like myself, any Catholics who have gone to Mass at a church where there has been communion in the hand encounter a veritable minefield where they have mindlessly, repeatedly set their heels against the Holy Face of Jesus Christ Himself! The thought of this horrifies me now. Some, myself included, simply did not care to know what they were doing. Still, does not Our Lord withdraw Himself in anguish from such as do these things and care not? What must the Holy Virgin think of this treatment of her crucified Son?.

Not for me, but for the love you bear the Virgin Mother of God, I beg from Your Holiness two things: First, please lift this very specially reserved excommunication, forgiving these most grievous sins, committed without even caring, against Our Lord’s very Person. Second, please mail to me directly your personally signed written blessing stating specifically that Your Holiness blesses me for now seeking all sacraments and worship of God for myself and my family (I have seven children) at the only churches and chapels in my country where communion in the hand has never been offered at any Mass, the only churches and chapels where there is a moral certainty that there are not thousands of Sacred particles on the floors, the only chapels and churches where my family is truly free not to trample upon our God–to these only, the churches and chapels of the Society of St. Pius X where communion in the hand is still condemned as stated in the old Roman Catechism and amongst which it has never been tolerated; Deo Gratias. Difficulties notwithstanding, as this is a matter touching upon God Himself, it is prayed that Your Holiness will hear us.

With Thanks to Our One, True God–Jesus the Christ and the One who conceived Him and was Herself Immaculately conceived by this same True God, now True Man,

Charles St-George, men’s barber by trade

 

Mr. St-George explains study:

This day a brief scientific trial was undertaken to verifiably ascertain how many, if any, consecrated particles of the Sacred Species are typically broken away from the hosts, and subsequently thrown-away, desecrated and abused specifically as a consequence of the practice of communion-in-the-hand in the Catholic Church in the United States today.

My teen-aged son, Joseph, was my aide in this study, acting the part of the communicant while I acted the part of the Eucharistic Minister. For the purposes of this trial, I purchased from Catholic Supply of St. Louis, MO, a box of 1000 1 1 /8″ diameter white altar breads, item No.57212, advertised on their web-site http://www.catholicsupply.com/churchs/wine.html as follows: “We are pleased to offer by far the best altar bread. All of our breads have a carefully molded sealed edge which prevents crumbs.”–The questioned truthfulness of that critical conclusion, naively believed by many, is one reason why we decided upon this trial.

For this trial, Joseph and I prepared by carefully washing our hands and fingers and drying same with lintless towels. We then examined our fingertips and Joseph’s left palm which would each contact the host to be assured they contained no foreign matter which could be mistaken for a bread particle. I determined we would look for particles after each and every individual “communion” in three areas–my fingertips, Joseph’s palm and Joseph’s fingertips. I further determined that we would count the results from 25 “communions” and record how many particles were found and where. We would only count “naked-eye visible” particles we could both see.

The contents of one packet of altar breads was carefully emptied into a small plastic cup. Recalling my training as a Eucharistic Minister (may God forgive me), I would gently take up a host between my right index finger and thumb and place this host in Joseph’s left palm with only sufficient firmness to assure it would be transferred. Joseph commented that eucharistic ministers at Masses he attended were less gentle in transferring the Host to his palm. He would then take the host between his right index finger and thumb and place it on his tongue without touching his fingers to his tongue. Joseph would then keep his right index finger against his thumb and hold his left palm upward while we both inspected: first, my right index finger, then my right thumb, then his left palm, then his right index finger, and finally his right thumb for any particles of bread fractured from the host and adhering to us as a result of this multiple manipulation and touching. We would carefully scrape away any particles found before the next “communion” with the blade of a sharp knife to be assured of not counting any particles twice.

What were our trial findings? Were there any particles of bread fractured from these 25 hosts taken one at a time from a cup and placed in Joseph’s palm and taken from his palm and transferred to his mouth? We were both disturbed at how many particles: From the 25 “communions,” we found a grand total of 92 individual, naked-eye visible particles which averages to 3.68 particles per “communion.” The largest of these particles measured 60 thousandths of an inch long, or 1.5 mm. The 6X enlarged photo (previous page) shows 10 of the actual particles we found, counted and saved. As detailed in the below statistical information, we counted 27 particles from my fingertips, 47 particles from Joseph’s palm and another 18 particles from Joseph’s fingertips. Only one “communion”, No.22 in the series, was free of any visible particles. On the other hand, the highest particle count of seven resulted from “communions” Nos. 6, 15 and 16. It is hoped that this trial will work to the honor of Our Lord and aid those who still care for Him.

Now bearing this mind, let us read Rome’s response:

Dear Sir,

On behalf of His Holiness, Pope John Paul II, I would like to thank you for your letter dated April 17th, for the enclosed offering and materials concerning the Holy Eucharist.

Answers to questions you have raised are contained in documents approved by the Pope: Rituale Romanum, De Sacra Comunione et de cultu Misterii Eucharistici extra Missam, Praenotanda 21 and Congregatio de Cultu Divino et Disiplina Sacramentorum, Instructio varietates legittimae, Nos.31, 54, 62. They allow reception of Holy Communion while standing and in the hand. It is not an error provided that one’s attitude is one of respect while meeting God Who is coming. The Catechism of the Catholic Church says about the subject: “To prepare for worthy reception of this sacrament, the faithful should observe the fast required in their Church. Bodily demeanor (gestures, clothing) ought to convey the respect, solemnity, and joy of this moment when Christ becomes our guest” (Catechism of Catholic Church, art.1387). The practical application of those instructions is up to the giver who is obliged to make sure that the faithful are both conscious of what they receive in the Eucharist and that they express their respect for Christ present in the form of bread.

The palm is not any less respectable a part of the human body than the tongue. Christ accepted bread “fruit of the earth and human labor” as material for the Eucharist. During the Last Supper he did not give consecrated pieces to the mouth of his disciples but he “broke it and gave it” knowing that it is not possible to avoid destruction of some particles of consecrated bread in which He is present. Accordingly, church regulations say that both the priest offering communion and the recipient are responsible only for the particles which are visible without the use of optical instruments. To make it easier in practice, the western Church developed through the ages a tradition of passing communion directly on the tongue of the believer. There is, though, no reason to stick stubbornly to that traditional form of receiving communion. It would be more appropriate to be concerned about respecting the Eucharist by every day adoration, frequent participation in Holy Communion, by helping others to receive it in a dignifi ed manner etc. Desecration is committed only by consciously and willingly “–throwing away, taking or retaining for evil purposes the consecrated species.”

Accordingly, there is no need to take part in the Eucharist celebrated by members of the Society of St. Pius X, which is not in unity with the Catholic Church. Furthermore, it would be highly inappropriate to do so.

I would like to encourage you to remain in the love of the Eucharistic Christ, to adore and respect the Eucharist, but without being too scrupulous. I would like also to assure you that the Holy Father prays for you and asks for God’s grace for you.

Respectfully,

Monsigniore Pedro Lopez Quintana

ASSESSOR

 

Kyrie Eleison!

Steven C.

SSPX Marriages and the Society’s relations with Rome

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http://sspx.org/en/interview-bishop-fellay-april-2017

In Bishop Bernard Fellays’s latest interview, he gives us some insight into the Pope’s recognition of SSPX Marriages, as well as a general overview of the current Society relations with Rome. As always, a must read. The transcript follows.

~Damsel of the Faith

SSPX USA: Your Excellency, thank you very much for taking the time out of your very busy schedule to meet with us. If you don’t mind, we have a few questions that have been in the news recently that we hoped you might shed some light on.

Bishop Fellay: With pleasure.

The State of Marriages in the SSPX

SSPX USA: The latest news from Rome, first of all, regarding the Society concerns provisions for our marriages. What does that mean for the Society and how will it affect us practically?

Bishop Fellay: It’s a broad question. May I recall the background a bit? The background is that, for years, a kind of jurisprudence has been established by the official Church, by Rome, which claims that our marriages would be invalid. Of course, we have enough elements in Canon Law to prove that is not the case. But nevertheless, people who want to break – if I may say so — their marriage have an easy door with this stipulation.

And so for years I’ve tried to see with Rome what can be done to block this unjust, unreal situation. Finally, after different ideas throughout the years – it’s almost 10 years that I have been discussing this – and it’s certainly an initiative of the Holy Father – came the idea of telling the bishops: why not recognize this situation as Catholic and hence give the delegation? That’s really the background.

Now, as with many documents, you have to read between the lines. I think the aim is in the second paragraph which says to the bishops: the priests of the Society, though the Church labels them as irregular, are capable of receiving the delegation necessary to bless or to receive the consent of the marriage. So I think, it has to be read as a new step towards the Society, in fact; not at all a step of trying to get the Society” in the pockets”; how do you say? No, on the contrary, to recognize that what we do is Catholic and telling the bishops: “You can give the delegation even to these priests.”

And what is very interesting also: it is stated that they speak about our marriages. And they say in that case, even if diocesan priests would be delegated for receiving the consent, nevertheless the Mass itself would be celebrated by a priest of the Society. So the fact that there is a clear statement that the priest will celebrate the Mass from the Society is once again a new step in the right direction, saying that these priests not only can but will say the Mass. And obviously in the right manner, so without any irregularity.

So you have somewhere a certain contradiction in the text. It is obvious. It has to be understood in such a way that, first, Rome wants to state that we, in their eyes, are not yet completely in canonical order. So they want to make that statement. But despite that: “Treat them normally as if there would be no disorder.” That’s the interesting thing.

Certainly, you can have different ways to look at this text; you can have a positive or a pessimistic way. But, looking at the Holy Father, looking at how Pope Francis deals with us, for a certain time, it is very clear that it is a benevolent step against us; not a trap, not a bad, hidden trick, or catch. No: it is a will that we are treated correctly at all levels.
SSPX USA: Your Excellency, you spoke of possible contradictions in the text or even different ways of reading between the lines. Some of the faithful who attend Society Masses have perhaps read a different interpretation, expecting to now accept priests from the diocese to receive their vows. And some of them seem uncomfortable with the idea of a diocesan priest, for instance, coming to a SSPX chapel to receive their vows. What would you say to those who expect or think this provision of Rome is simply another obstacle for the faithful to get married by priests of the Society?

Bishop Fellay: I think when we go into the practical situation, it is difficult to see beforehand. We will try to deal with the bishops; we will try to get the best out of the text. We already have examples right now of bishops, especially in Argentina, which is the country of the Pope, where the bishop has simply given the delegation to our priests. Period. And we expect that that will be the general situation. So, the correct interpretation of the text.

This does not exclude a situation where, let’s say, a bishop will be stubborn and so on and will insist on imposing a priest. Then we will have to look into the concrete situation. Definitely, as it is a marriage of our faithful, they have a say. And that’s why I read in this way the text which speaks of “in an impossibility of Plan A, go to Plan B”, which is give directly the delegation to the priests of the Society.

So, if there are cases where we feel uncomfortable, we have to say it. And it’s even in the text. Probably we will have here and there some difficulties, but they are not without a solution.

SSPX USA: Since the document mentions the possibility of local ordinaries giving delegation directly to the Society, and you’ve mentioned possible examples that exist already, how will the priests of the Society go about trying to obtain that delegation? Is it up to individual priests, local priors, District Superiors, the General House? Is there any light you can shed on how, practically, that will play out?

Bishop Fellay: We will indicate to the different Districts the path, the way of handling that case. You may have different situations. In general, as I say, we will try not to handle this case-by-case, but to get to general policies with the bishops. And this would mean that there would be a contact with the Superior of the District.

SSPX USA: Speaking of general policies, in the document that was released from the General House, there was an indication that guidelines would be drawn up for the whole Society. Is it premature to comment on those guidelines or have discussions already occurred regarding those?

Bishop Fellay: I think it’s too early. We have also to see how this text from Rome will be received locally. And we don’t yet have all the answers. But you can easily imagine that, with such a text, most of the bishops don’t bother as it is an opening towards us. And they will just grant it.
SSPX USA: How would we deal with the question of marriage in places where, for instance, the bishops do not want to collaborate? Is there a risk of having certain countries or dioceses where bishops grant delegation and others don’t?

Bishop Fellay: Strictly speaking, we could expect that. It’s possible, let’s say, that bishops would go against the disposition of the Pope. We know that. And I don’t fear that because we come back to the present situation, foreseen by Canon Law, which says that, if there is a grave difficulty, or in Latin, grave incommodum, the two future spouses can proceed. And they must have, for that situation, witnesses, and if a priest is available, the priest.
SSPX USA: So in the event a local bishop would be opposed, is there some recourse to Rome to protect us or is that not in the case?

Bishop Fellay: I would say it’s not necessary, but we probably will look into the question. And we may speak with Rome about it: would it be just to establish in such cases another policy, if I may say? When I spoke to the Pope about the present situation of bishops refusing, he said: “But I can give it!”It was really interesting. Let’s say, as an ultimate recourse, we know that, on the side of the Pope, there is a readiness.
SSPX USA: This may seem like a practical question in light of the recent document, but where will these marriages from here on be registered? Will they simply be in the priories and chapels of the Society or in the local diocesan parishes or somewhere else?

Bishop Fellay: If we follow the indication of the text itself, I think that the correct interpretation is that we continue our registration and we send the notification to the diocese.
SSPX USA: Also, from the perspective of those who wish to be married, do you anticipate a kind of “test” for the spouses we have prepared for marriage? Would it not be strange for a priest who had no role in the training of the spouses to witness their vows and even have no idea whether they are properly prepared?

Bishop Fellay: Once again, I think the text foresees that we prepare, we make the tests, and the local priest is only there for the ceremony, like putting the stamp on a reality which is all ours.

A Step Forward With Rome

SSPX USA: You answered this a bit earlier, but perhaps you could expound on it. You seem to interpret this either as a step towards regularization or at least of good will from Rome rather than interpreting these gestures as a kind of trap to keep us from doing the work that we’ve already been doing. Can you comment any further on that dichotomy?

Bishop Fellay: Yes, no problem. I think that this is not the first step which goes in that direction. I said that I’ve been discussing about this question for 10 years already. I speak about other problems which would request an intervention of Rome, of the highest authority; Catholic acts which we establish and that would be recognized by Rome. And I see that this is happening at diverse levels. The more we go, the more intense this is the common practice.

Which means that, even though there are certain claims about us being irregular, more and more we are treated as if things would be just normal. In recent years, everybody has heard about the power of hearing confessions worldwide, everywhere. And being not only valid, but licit; that is, everybody can, without trouble of conscience, come to the priests of the Society. That’s an example.

Another example is ordinations. Last year, I received a letter from Rome telling me: “You can freely ordain your priests without the permission of the local ordinary.” So if I can freely ordain, that means that the ordination is recognized by the Church, not just as valid but in order. If I can freely do it, it’s clear that this is just already recognized and accepted. So this is one more step in this acceptance that we are “normal Catholics” despite this underlying sense that we are still not completely in order. More and more, this is going on and it’s not the first step. Frankly, I don’t see there any will to interfere or take over, but simply the recognition that what we do is Catholic.
SSPX USA: To switch topics a little bit, though I suppose it’s indirectly related, there’s a little more than a year until the next General Chapter of the Society. Can you say anything about what preparations are underway and what that means for the Society; or is it perhaps too early?

Bishop Fellay: No, I don’t think it’s too early. We can really talk about it. This Chapter is the one which will happen, provided everything goes forward or is still the way they are now. In any case, even if we are recognized before, it would imply a General Chapter according to our internal policies. So if it happens before, or at that time, in any case, it is the occasion for us to look into our faithfulness to our statutes, how accurate we accomplish them, what the failures are, what are the points are that need improvement, what the new questions are, and new problems. I guess that, with this new possible recognition by Rome, this will, when it happens, raise quite a number of new questions, of new situations. We certainly already reflect on them now, but we’ll have to put them into guidelines or policies for the whole Society. In any case, I think it will be an important Chapter and we are preparing, definitely. One year is not too long before to prepare it.

The Current State of the SSPX

SSPX USA: Perhaps speaking even more generally, can you say how and where is the Society growing most around the world? Are there places in particular that perhaps strike you as unique or particularly impressive?

Bishop Fellay: What I see, in general, is a more or less constant growth, not too spectacular. Here and then, a group would just join us as a group, but that is really rare. It’s more or less individuals who come, who join, one family here or there. But this is universal in all the countries where we are settled; in all six continents you find that. Some places know greater or more intense growth: countries like the United States and some places in Africa have that, yes. But there are variations from one country to the other. So I cannot say for sure that for 10 years you really have one which is increasing more than another. The whole Society is still growing and I say, the more we grow, the more we have a problem of not having enough priests to cope with all the needs.
SSPX USA: Speaking of priests, what is the trend of priests coming from either dioceses or religious congregations, perhaps showing interest in the Society? Has it increased or decreased since Pope Francis? Maybe you can speak to their motives and why they choose the Society out of a number of options.

Bishop Fellay: Yes, it seems to me that there’s not much change before and after the election of Pope Francis. I think it is deeper trend than just one person being in charge. There are priests, indeed, who approach us. They approach us to become a member but many of them don’t necessarily want to become a member. But they want to be friends, they want to learn from us: the sacred liturgy, on one hand, but more the doctrine.

Once I was in front of a group of priest friends in Italy—it was about two years ago—and I asked them, about 30 priests: What do you expect from us? And I was almost certain that they would say, “Well, teach us how to say the Mass.” That was not the answer. The answer is: the doctrine. That’s what they expect. And it’s deeper, of course: without doctrine, which explains the Mass, the Mass may be beautiful and so on, but what makes it solid is the doctrine which is expressed, which is coming out of the Mass. And if you have a good and solid knowledge of this theology, it makes the liturgy even more necessary, I may say.

And that’s what you see a little bit everywhere. I see priests who approach us, but not just for the Mass: for much more! They want to learn Tradition. Many of them, when they discover the Mass, are frustrated. They feel cheated. And they say: “These are treasurers, our treasures, and they were hidden from us!” But they don’t remember that level of frustration; they really enjoy Tradition deeply and they want to live it.

Response to the Current Crises

SSPX USA: Your Excellency, speaking of another more universal question, Amoris Laetitia has generated a tremendous amount of confusion and controversy since it was released last year. On the one hand, one could say it’s encouraging to see some wake up to the crisis in the Church; on the the other hand, the pastoral results of that document are really devastating. There are even some who claim the Society has been too soft in their critique of Amoris Laetitia. What are your thoughts about this document and the controversy it’s engendered?

Bishop Fellay: At the time, I wrote to Pope Francis, and we prepared a text to wake up the cardinals, a letter from our three bishops. But, I will not say “unfortunately”–that would not be the right word—but four cardinals took the initiative just before we were about to send the letter. That’s why there was not much noise about it because it was already done. So our letter just remains in a drawer.

In fact, we are certainly doing all that we can with those who raise their voice. I think it is important that people notice that we are no longer the only ones who complain, who denounce, who attack poor situations which are harming souls. It could be one of the reasons why, here and there, I would not talk immediately, letting their voice appear and not mixing mine with theirs. Because usually when we do that, they are disqualified because this tendency of disqualifying us in the modern Church is still very present. And so, letting their voice be heard, for the whole Church, is probably better. And everybody anyway knows what we think and what our positions are. It has not changed and everybody knows that.

So while, and as long as there are voices in the Church who talk in the right direction, to say that one day or another, I would have spoken more softly, does not change anything in the big picture, in the big fight which is still there. That’s very, very clear. And it absolutely does not mean that we would, by politics, in order not to jeopardize a possible agreement—which is not the correct word—or canonical recognition, lower our voice is simply not true. If someone would be careful and look at all I write and say, they would say that I just continue. We are still the same.

And I insist in Rome to say we are like this and we are not going to change. We may be a little bit less controversial in attacking the persons. But our reason would not be just a personal gain. What we look for is the most efficient way to have a benefice for the whole Church. Sometimes you gain more by giving a simple argument than by barking it. You have to look at the cases. We are still in a fight, we know that, and it’s definitely not over. It’s not just for the pleasure of fighting, but we belong to the militant Church.
SSPX USA: Perhaps in conclusion, a simpler question: you’re here in St. Mary’s, KS, for confirmations. St. Mary’s is obviously the Society’s biggest parish and school in America. What are your impressions or thoughts you might share on St. Mary’s?

Bishop Fellay: I admire the work of Divine Providence in this place which was sanctified just before us by the Jesuits. It was the scholasticate of the Jesuits. In the church, which is no longer there, which was burnt, we know that over 1,000 priests have been ordained. We know it’s not only a very holy place, but a very priestly place. And as the first scope of the Society is the priesthood, it’s a good reminder.

And I may say certainly we are harvesting. We are trying to sow the seed but we are more harvesting from the work of previous good workers in the field of the Lord. We certainly admire and thank God for these beautiful fruits of the traditional attitude, which was everywhere before.

 

Cardinal Burke calls for Consecration of Russia to Immaculate Heart

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https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/breaking-cardinal-burke-calls-for-consecration-of-russia-to-immaculate-hear

As a speaker at the Rome Life Forum yesterday, Cardinal Raymond Burke called for the Pope and Bishops to consecrate Russia to Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart as was requested at Fatima.  “He[the Cardinal] expressed agreement with one of the foremost Fatima scholars, Frère Michel de la Sainte Trinité, who said that the promised triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary undoubtedly refers firstly to ‘the victory of the Faith, which will put an end to the time of apostasy, and the great shortcomings of the Church’s pastors.'”  The Cardinal also pointed out that other attempts, such as John Paul II’s consecration of the world to the Immaculate Heart, however well-intentioned, did not fulfill the conditions laid out by Heaven.

Despite the Cardinal’s apparent hesitation to recognize the errors of Vatican II and the conciliar Popes for what they are, we must commend these remarkable efforts and statements in favor of Tradition and the message of Fatima.  For several decades, it was the perseverance of Fr. Nicholas Gruner, the Society of St. Pius X, and other “radical Traditionalists” that kept the truth regarding the message of Fatima alive.  These truths we have always prayed to hear from the Church authorities, but seldom, if ever, have.

However, this good Cardinal has done his duty and taken the message of Fatima firmly into the ‘mainstream’ and hopefully into the minds and hearts of many more Catholics. Certainly it is a great occasion for jubilation, but let us only continue fighting with a greater fervor and strength for the coming of the Great Restoration!

On a natural level, does the Consecration of Russia seem imminent?  Unfortunately, it appears the contrary is true.  An excerpt from this week’s Pastor’s Corner commentary from sspx.org:

“The occasion of the anniversary would have been providential for the long expected consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, but this was not to be. No mention was even made of the need to increase devotion to Our Lady, especially that of the first five Saturdays. The Fatima message, with the three secrets, containing warnings of punishment and threats of death is not pleasing to modern ears. Yet, the Pope himself laments the war stricken world around us and the loss of the sense of the sacred.

Our Lady’s words always connect the punishments with the crime of individuals and nations, and the solution to these threats is first and foremost spiritual: the return to God, to penance, prayer, and the sacraments. However, such names as sin, punishment, and penance have no room in the modern ecclesiastical jargon, where the leitmotiv is simply peace, joy, union in whatever religious feeling one may experience, and so forth. Too many hierarchs in the Church seem to think that if the Blessed Virgin were to visit them today she would have to be “more sophisticated” or “with the times.”

As Roberto de Mattei concludes in his assessment of the Pope’s visit:

We need to acknowledge that the message of Fatima reinterpreted according to Pope Francis’ sociological categories has little to do with the prophetic announcement of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, which Our Lady proclaimed to the world one hundred years ago.”

Nevertheless, let us continue to pray for the Consecration to be performed very soon, for all is in God’s hands!  And may we continue to promote and be faithful to this great grace given to us from Heaven!

The six means of Our Lady of Fatima for the faithful to bring about the Restoration:

  1. Pray the Rosary each day
  2. Wear the Brown Scapular;
  3. Make sacrifices for the sake of saving sinners;
  4. Make reparation for offenses to her Immaculate Heart by means of the First Saturday devotion; and
  5. Convert our own lives ever more to Christ.
  6. Lastly, she asks the Roman Pontiff, in union with all the Bishops of the world, to consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart.

~ Steven C., “Knight of Tradition”

 

 

 

 

 

Why Christ folded his burial cloth after His Resurrection

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Scholars and historians have debated the subject and many people have wondered why a sentence in Scriptures was dedicated to a seemingly unimportant detail about the burial cloth of Christ. To grasp the meaning of this seeming oddity, we need to have an understanding of the Hebrew traditions of that time.

First, the Scriptural passage:

“And the napkin that had been about his head, not lying with the linen cloths, but apart, wrapped up into one place.”  ~John 20:7

St. John Chrysostom explains that this folded cloth is proof Christ’s body could not have been stolen: “They drew near and saw the linen cloths (othonia) lying, which was a sign of the resurrection. For neither anyone intending to remove the body would have first stripped it. Nor if any had stolen the body would thy have taken the trouble to remove the napkin and wrapped it up in one place. How would they have done it? They would have taken the body as it was. For this cause, the Evangelist John tel us by anticipation that it was burried with much myrrh, which glues linen cloths to the body not less firmly than lead. Thus, when you hear that the napkin lay apart, you may not bear with those who say that He was stolen. For a thief would not have been so mindless as to spend so much trouble on a superfluous matter. For why should he undo the cloth and remove the napkin? Besides, how could he have escaped detection if he had taken so much time in so doing? He would have been caught delaying and loitering. But why do the linen cloths lie apart, while the napkin (soudarion) was wrapped together by itself? That you may learn that the action was not done hastily or in a clamorous manner, the placing some in one place, some in another, and wrapping them together.”

Hebrew dining tradition centered around the servent and his master. Naturally, the servent served his master.  The custom was that if the master was finished, the napkin would be tossed in a wad on the table, signifying that the master had finished eating. If the master left the table but was returning, the master would fold the napkin neatly.

Jesus Christ, the true Master, was telling us that He is returning from the dead, just as he said.

~Damsel of the Faith