Author Archives: Steven C.

About Steven C.

A young traditional Catholic man fighting for Holy Mother Church!

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

communion hand

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.

Cardinal Burke calls for Consecration of Russia to Immaculate Heart

Image result for cardinal burke

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”

 

 

 

 

 

Pope Francis disparages Medjugorje ‘apparitions’- why all Catholics must reject them

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-pope-medjugorje-idUSKCN18A0E8

In marking the 100th Anniversary of the first apparition of Our Lady of Fatima, Pope Francis traveled top Fatima and canonized the two younger shepherd children, Francisco and Jacinta.  Despite the numerous problems associated with this act(the horrendously modern-looking church used, the dubious canonization process), this recognition should be praised as positive for the universal Church and her members.

Pope Francis unfortunately spoke several more questionable statements and novelties over the weekend, many of which you may read about on other traditional websites.  However, many statements made were quite interesting, such as these remarks on the Medjugorje “apparitions”(from the attached link above):

“‘The (commission) report has its doubts. I personally am more nasty. I prefer the Madonna as mother, our mother, and not a Madonna who is the head of a telegraph office, who every day sends a message at such-and-such an hour. This is not the Mother of Jesus,” he said.

“Who thinks that the Madonna says, ‘Come tomorrow at this time, and at such time I will deliver a message to that visionary?'” he said.

But Francis acknowledged that some people who go to Medjugorje experience a spiritual renewal and “encounter God, change their lives.

Although these remarks were made in another off-the-cuff airplane interview and in his usual speaking style, the Holy Father has done much good here.  He notes the questionable results of the Commission to investigate these apparitions and comments on the rather erratic, unusual behavior of who supposedly is the “Madonna”.  Will all of those Medjugorje devotees preach obedience to the Holy Father here, as they usually criticize us for not obeying?  Some may, but others have highlighted his words that this is his personal opinion.

While these are good reasons to question these claimed visions, there are other reasons why Catholics are obliged to reject them.  For one, it is doubtful that the children are often even in ecstasy much of the time, as proven by the French journalist who made a seer flinch when he snapped his fingers by her face.  But the main reason we must condemn the Medjugorje craze is the many “ecumenical” statements made by “Our Lady” to multiple seers affirming that all religions are dear to her Son and that we cannot be believers if we do not respect other religions as well.  Clearly such remarks are both blasphemous and heretical.  So the Mother of God would not distinguish between individuals and the false religions themselves?  We are required under pain of sin not to accept these statements, and this is what particularly dooms the Medjugorje visions.  It is unsettling that the Pope did not mention these questions, perhaps because he unfortunately finds no problem with them.  These affirmations differ very little from those made at Vatican II concerning the ecumenical movement.

But why then are there several examples of conversions from visiting Medjugorje?  A short excerpt from sspx.org:

“…However, Dan Burke at the National Catholic Register points out that although God can bring good out of evil if He chooses, among the evil fruits of Medjugorje are disobedience and disrespect of the local bishop in a matter clearly within the purview of his authority. It is concerning that this disobedience supported and encouraged by the supposed messages of Our Lady through the “seers.”

Moreover, the personal lives of a number of the disobedient clerics involved with the apparitions do not stand up to scrutiny.”

The good intention of a soul may move the Hand of God to provide the necessary graces, but this does not justify these supposed “visions”. We must reject the falsehoods present and defend the honor and glory of Our Lady.  For a comprehensive refutation of the Medjugorje apparitions, here is the full, acclaimed work of the late traditional writer, Michael Davies:

http://sspx.org/sites/sspx/files/medjugorje-a-warning-michael-davies.pdf

Mr. Davies’ book has been of great assistance to souls trying to see through this dangerous cloak thinly covering such a diabolical manifestation.  Let us act accordingly and help souls to see the truth, while praying that the Authorities continue to oppose these visions, but in a more clear, defined manner.

 

~ Steven C.

Friendship

Note:  I had written a similar post on Friendship several months ago, but a comment from one of our readers inspired me to revise it.  I now re-post an updated version, especially for those who may have missed the first posting.  All for the great honor of this saving and sustaining virtue!- Steven C.

The Damsel and I are working on a post for the upcoming 100th Anniversary of Our Lady’s first apparition at Fatima.  Let us prepare well for this most important anniversary!  

The following passage is taken from The Friendship of the Saints by Fr. Aloysius Roche:

“Solomon says, “A faithful friend is the medicine of life and immor­tality”; and he adds the significant words: “They that fear the Lord shall find him.” The Old Testament delights us with the story of the friendship of David and Jonathan. “Jonathan loved David as his own soul”; and David’s love for Jonathan “passed the love of woman.” 

As the modern world falls apart around us, causing ever more conflict and bitterness, we might question whether indeed such friendships exist in good numbers today.

Good Christians have the best and dearest example of a true friend in Our Lord Jesus Christ.  In John 15:15, for example, He addresses His disciples as such:

“I will not now call you servants: for the servant knoweth not what his lord doth. But I have called you friends: because all things whatsoever I have heard of my Father, I have made known to you. ”

In John 15:12, Our Lord commands us “that you love one another, as I have loved you.”  We are called to practice Our Lord’s dear example of Friendship.  And what did Our Lord do for His friends?  He went through the most excruciating Passion and Death, in the greatest and most terrible of sufferings that any of us could ever undergo.  He did so for the reason that all of His friends could enjoy the great Kingdom prepared by His Father for them for all Eternity.  So great was Our Lord’s generosity that He even suffered His Passion and Death for those who did not accept Him, in the hopes that all men would become His friends and be saved.

If there are indeed few true friendships in today’s world, it is because of a lack of a spirit of sacrifice.  Sacrifice is the essence of a true and loving friendship.  One might feel tempted to object: “But it is such a pleasure to have such wonderful friends!  It is not sacrifice!”  Well, Heaven never commanded that sacrifice be such a painful burden.  On the contrary, true sacrifice is joyful!  Even if there may be much pain surrounding our sacrifices, we accept God’s will and offer everything up to Him, for love of Him.  There is always at least that element of joy in every true sacrifice.

The sacrifice in a true friendship is the withholding of love for one’s self and wholeheartedly sharing this love with another.  This can be especially necessary in a time of a trial for our friend, when he needs much consoling and encouragement and care.  One truly knows who his friends are in the most difficult of times.

I will now share with you all some beautiful quotes from great saints regarding this innocent and noble joy of life:

St. Francis de Sales-  “There is not a man who has a heart more tender and more open to friendship than mine or who feels more keenly than I do the pain of separation from those I love.”

St. Therese de Lisieux- “When I entered Carmel, I found in the novitiate a companion about eight years older than I was. In spite of the difference of age, we became the closest friends; and to encourage an affection that gave promise of fostering virtue, we were allowed to converse together.”

St. Teresa of Avila to Don Francisco de Salcedo: “Please God you will live until I die; then I shall ask God to summon you promptly, lest I should be without you in Heaven.”

St. Bernard after the death of one of his dearest friends, Humbert of Clairvaux: “Flow, flow, my tears, so eager to flow. He who prevented your flowing is here no more. It is not he who is dead but I – I who now live only to die. Why, oh why, have we loved and why have we lost one another?”

St. Augustine to St. Jerome: “O that it were possible to enjoy sweet and frequent converse with you; if not by living with you at least by living near you.”

From The Mirror of Perfection, during the time of St. Francis of Assisi’s death: “The Lady Clare, fearing she would die before him, wept most bitterly and would not be comforted, for she thought that she would not see before her departure her Comforter and Master.”

 

This post is dedicated to all those who persevere in making great sacrifices to remain faithful to their vocation.  No matter married, single, or religious; they are the dearest friends of Our Lord.

 

~ Steven C.

Should Traditional Catholics attend Motu Proprio Masses?

The following post will address whether traditional Catholics, fully aware of the crisis in the Church, ought to attend Traditional Masses said under the diocese or the Ecclesia Dei Commission.  This topic is important because many traditionalists are willing to freely attend Traditional Masses almost anywhere with the justification that “it’s the Mass”.  They will often flip-flop between attendance at, for example, an SSPX chapel and a diocesan church for often truly mysterious reasons.

This post is suggested to be read alongside my previous article this week(https://damselofthefaith.wordpress.com/2017/05/01/fssp-german-superior-compromises-on-tradition-in-interview/).  I will begin by summarizing some key points from our previous post titled “Errors of Vatican II”:

“In order to obtain a proper perspective on this great crisis in the Church, it is necessary to know precisely its root cause.  The root cause is thus: Modernist errors being promoted “underground” since St. Pius X’s pontificate quickly gained acceptance or submission throughout virtually the entire Church as a result of the ambiguities and errors of the Second Vatican Council, the main fruit of which was the New mass.

This can be easily confused, however, because of the common “conservative”(but not fully traditional) Catholic mindset.  The “conservative” position essentially proposes that although there are some worrisome statements and ideas spreading in the Church, even now with the aid of Pope Francis himself(or maybe not), Vatican II and the New mass are fine as long as they are both interpreted correctly.  At most, there might be a few ambiguous sentences here and there, but a Catholic should simply interpret them correctly.  After all, how could the Holy Ghost have allowed error?  Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI are recognized as shining examples of orthodoxy; if only the Bishops under them would not have been so liberal.

Surely, dear readers, this may be a good start for a Catholic on the beginning of his journey towards Tradition, but he has not quite arrived at the full truth.  The fact of the matter is that Vatican II was convened as a “pastoral” Council, not a dogmatic one.  It has no binding, dogmatic force in itself.  The Holy Ghost does not necessarily protect such a Council from error, especially if he is shunned by many of its participants.  Modernist, Freemasonic errors were in fact proposed by “progressive” clergy and, in the end, included in the Council documents.  Every priest, bishop, and cardinal in the world was subsequently under heavy pressure to accept these documents with most of them unfortunately accepting or at least keeping silent.  In reality, there were only a few clergy who openly confronted this revolution. Many put themselves under the guidance and training of Abp. Lefebvre, who would form the Society of St. Pius X and establish many traditional monasteries and convents.  Others would remain faithful inside the diocesan structures, although often having to perform their priestly duties in a more “independent” manner.  All of these brave priests and bishops were constantly under attack for their providential stand.  May God bless, reward, and love them forever!

This perspective is also relevant since there are many traditional-leaning Orders in the Church who offer the Traditional Mass and more substantial doctrine, but had to accept all of Vatican II and the New Mass to be received “in full communion with Rome”.  On paper, the priests in these Orders cannot protest these errors and must remain, at least for the most part, silent on them.”

The question now to be answered is whether traditional Catholics may attend Masses of priests in this situation.  A couple of distinctions should briefly be addressed:

Some diocesan priests unfortunately approve various conciliar abuses straight from the Novus Ordo to be implemented in their Traditional Masses.  One common example is the giving of Communion in the hand.  Most of these novelties are sacrilegious and objectively a grave offense against God.  The situation described here is often hardly better than that of the New mass.  Traditional Catholics should definitely avoid attending these Masses, with the exception of passive attendance when allowed.

A few priests have managed to remain in the “official” Church structures and still oppose Vatican II and the New mass.  These priests often face heavy persecution from their liberal bishops and are subsequently forced to work “independently” due to illegal “suspensions”, while still remaining attached to their diocese or religious community.  Traditional Catholics may usually certainly attend the Masses of these good priests.

What then of the “middle ground” between these two sides?  To answer this question, some reliable Catholic sources will be consulted.

First, a general overview from SSPX U.S. District:

The problem with motu proprio Masses

July 19, 2013

The motu proprioSummorum Pontificum, officially ended the canonical struggle over the traditional Roman Mass—but is this the end of the fight for the Mass of All Time?

Since the motu proprio of 2007, Summorum Pontificum, Pope Benedict XVI changed the juridical situation of the Mass stating that the traditional Mass has never been abrogated.

Thanks to this statement, the Mass has been reestablished as a universal law of the Church and can no longer be considered as prohibited or even as an exception: unfortunately, the expression “extraordinary form” used in themotu propio is misleading. Rome pretends that there are now two usages of the same Roman Rite: “both are the expression of the same lex orandi—rule of prayer—of the Church” (n.6).

Cardinal Stickler wrote in 2004 on the intervention of Cardinals Ottaviani and Bacci:

The analysis of the Novus Ordo made by these two cardinals has lost none of its value nor, unfortunately, of its relevance…. The results of the reform are considered by many today to be devastating… they discovered very quickly that the change of the rites led to a fundamental change of doctrine.”

And the SSPX seriously questions, if not its validity in principle, then at least the “legitimacy of the Holy Mass or the Sacraments celebrated in the forma ordinaria” (n.19), since it is so difficult, as Cardinal Ottaviani had already noted in 1969, to consider the Mass of St. Pius V and that of Paul VI to be in the same “apostolic and unbroken tradition” (no. 3).

The document is contradictory in that it excludes those priests who are most attached to the traditional Mass and refuse to be bi-ritual. The contradiction is shown also in the exclusion of the old rite of priestly ordination although this point flies in the face of the principle recalled in n. 3 concerning adherence to “the usages universally handed down by apostolic and unbroken tradition.”

Practically-speaking, the bishops continue to limit the celebration of the traditional Mass by seeking to grant a permission which is no longer necessary, oftentimes in addition to other arbitrary conditions. Thus as we pray that the “Mass of All Time” may be given quickly the monopoly it should never have lost in the Latin Church, nevertheless we cannot but give a strong warning against the regular attendance at such diocesan masses under the present circumstances.

Are we not open to the generalization of the old Mass? Yes, of course, but in the terms of the non-ambiguous condemnation of the New Mass and of the errors of Vatican II which is preached boldly over many of today’s pulpits.

We cannot but feel taken aback as we see the two altars, old and new clashing in the sanctuary and the server extinguishing the candles of the Novus Ordo table to light those of the altar behind!

Certainly we cannot counsel our faithful to regularly participate in the Masses celebrated by priests of dubious doctrinal orthodoxy, even when offered reverentially. We must also warn them to not receive Holy Communion from a ciborium consecrated in the Novus Ordo Missae—for this is the Sacrament of unity and we cannot be in union with a theologically-deficient rite! There is also the constant danger of a strange confusion of rite and improper behavior which is so common in the mainstream churches and their accompanying irreverent rites.

For these reasons and so many others which you will easily discover even from occasional visits to your local motu proprio Mass or in talking with “conciliar trads”, why we think it is not advisable to regularly attend the “extraordinary form” offered by the diocese or under the aegis of the Ecclesia Dei Commission. After all, we have not been fighting for over 40 years against the modernist tsunami, only to be washed away by an ebb tide.”

 

A further explanation from Fr. Peter Scott and Abp. Marcel Lefebvre:

 

WHAT OUGHT TRADITIONAL CATHOLICS TO DO?

But, you might say, surely we can attend these Masses. They will be traditional Masses. They are not Indult Masses, for they no longer presume a special indult or permission, but are based upon the correct principle that the traditional rite was never abrogated. The Motu proprio itself does not attach any explicit and unacceptable conditions, as did the Indult. This delicate question can be resolved on two levels, one doctrinal and one liturgical. The first consideration is doctrinal. If we have won a battle for the celebration of the true Mass, we have not yet won it with respect to the profession of the true Faith, uncontaminated by the errors of Vatican II. Our attendance at Mass must be a profession of this true Faith, whole and entire. Hence the obligation of assisting at the Masses of those priests who stand up against the errors of Vatican II and refuse the idea of “non rupture”.

The second consideration is liturgical. Benedict XVI assures the Novus Ordo bishops of their ultimate control:“Nothing is taken away, then, from the authority of the Bishop…the local Ordinary will always be able to intervene”. Furthermore, he encourages the assistance at each of the two opposed rites. In fact, he goes so far as to propose that they be mixed in the same celebration, a confusing desecration not even permitted under the Indult: “For that matter, the two forms of the usage of the Roman rite can be mutually enriching: new Saints and some of the new Prefaces can and should be inserted in the old Missal.” The mind boggles at the consequences of such a principle, the practical application of which the Ecclesia Dei commission is supposed to study. The principle of alternating and mixing celebrations seems important to the Pope to establish non rupture between the two “uses”. However, it would inevitably greatly weaken the traditional Faith and the convictions of the faithful. It is for this reason that Archbishop Lefebvre, when giving profound reasons why our faithful ought not to attend the Indult Mass, pointed out that they must not attend the traditional Masses of those priests who still celebrate the New Mass, and who are not determined to combat the evils of the New Mass. These were his precise words in 1985:

“Generally speaking, we counsel the faithful against attending the Mass of those priests who have abandoned the combat against the New Mass. It is much to be feared that one day they will be obliged by their bishop to also celebrate the New Mass, to celebrate both Mass, and even to concelebrate, to accept giving Communion in the hand and of celebrating Mass facing the people. All of these things are entirely repugnant to us, and that is the reason why we counsel the faithful not at attend the Masses of these priests…As for us, it is always the same advice: we think that one ought not to go to these Masses because it is dangerous to affirm that the New Mass is just as good as the old one.” (Quoted in La messe de toujours, p. 431)

These words apply absolutely literally to the situation of Masses celebrated by non-traditional priests in parishes under this Motu proprio. As much good as such Masses will certainly do for those who are still in the NovusOrdo, and as much as we ought to encourage our Novus Ordo acquaintances to request their celebration, so much ought our faithful not to attend, even if they have no other Sunday Mass available. It would be an unacceptable compromise to attend the Masses of priests of the new rite, who celebrate and administer sacraments according to the new rite, or who are at least willing to do so. It would be precisely to cooperate in the Holy Father’s iniquitous policy of a reconciliatory non-rupture, a clever way to mix a little honey with the bitter pill of Vatican II, so that we might swallow it down without even realizing it.

Let not these realistic considerations, however, dampen the gratitude that Bishop Fellay requests that we have towards Almighty God first, and Archbishop Lefebvre second, who have permitted this victory. The Good Lord will bring much more good out of it than we could imagine, and will draw souls to the unchanging truth of Catholic Tradition.”

There may be some exceptions to this general rule.  One possible exception might be to encourage a prelate who is literally on the cusp of embracing full Tradition.  Some Catholics protest this position, noting that the only Traditional Masses accessible to them from their hometown(long-term) are Motu Proprio Masses.  For those in this situation, it is recommended to seek the advice of a trusted Traditional priest and above all to use good Catholic common sense in satisfying their Sunday duty.

Many traditional Catholics will criticize this entire approach, saying that we must tone down any “rhetoric” to be charitable to our traditional brothers.  This Sept. 1990 quote from Abp. Lefebvre refutes this objection: “’After all, we must be charitable, we must be kind, we must not be divisive, after all, they are celebrating the Tridentine Mass, they are not as bad as everyone says’–but they are betraying us! They are shaking hands with the Church’s destroyers, with people holding modernist and liberal ideas condemned by the Church. So they are doing the devil’s work.”  Charity, yes, but compromise with the ‘conciliar’ church, no!

On this “unity” advocated for, which the SSPX and the Ecclesia Dei Orders already possess in reality, this is an excellent piece by Angelus Press’ Mark Riddle:

 

“In a recent article, a traditional Catholic blogger made a call for what can only be described as a superficial unity among the two camps in the traditional Catholic movement – those aligned with the Society of St. Pius X, and those aligned with the Ecclesia Dei communities, which themselves grew out of the first camp (in most cases).

We must ask ourselves, first presented with such a call, to what unity is the author appealing? It can’t be a unity of worship – this is present already as both camps celebrate the immemorial Mass exclusively, at least theoretically (though admittedly the understanding and defense of that Mass differs greatly). It can’t be a unity of governance – despite the arguments given against the Society, it is beyond dispute that both sides are firmly in the bosom of the Church, and are in union with the Sovereign Pontiff and the hierarchy throughout the world. Finally, it can’t be a question of the unity of doctrine, because while the defense of the Faith differs in both degree and kind between the two camps, neither accuses the other, at a structural level, of heterodoxy.

So, if the two camps already share the unity of fellow Catholics, and it would be foolish to deny that they do, what kind of unity is sought?

It would seem the unity for which he calls is a sort of détente between the two camps – a “you’re OK, I’m OK” approach to the traditional Catholic movement (term used for lack of a better one). In this concept, both camps are positively ordained by God to the roles which they currently play: The Society to play the role of “bad cop” ever presenting to Rome the Church’s perennial teachings to help prevent further doctrinal chaos, the Ecclesia Dei communities to present to Rome – and the average Catholic in the pew – a picture of the vibrancy of Tradition from within normal canonical life. And yet, this is little more than a false oasis. Take a closer look and as the clouds move and the light shifts, the Edenic vision fades leaving behind nothing but desert sand. It is all an illusion.

While I stated above – and it would be difficult to deny – that both camps share a unity of doctrine – neither ascribing openly or at the organizational level to any non-Catholic doctrine, we must ask – is there a correct approach to the present crisis gripping the Church?

From the founding of the Society of St. Pius X and the affiliated groups aligned for Tradition, there was a relatively coherent and united approach – defend the True Faith against those who would abandon and attack it, even to the point of rebuking prelates, even the Sovereign Pontiff when his actions were objectively opposed to the perennial teaching of the Church.

This defense of the Faith required both this “negative” approach – condemning scandal and error for the sake of the faithful, and constantly, a “positive” approach – promoting the constant teaching of the Church, especially when it came to the rights of Our Lord Jesus Christ, so trampled by ecumenism and religious liberty.

This defense culminated in an earthquake – the canonically illegal and morally reprehensible “suspension” of 1976. But this is the key point. For 12 years, from then until the consecrations of bishops by Archbishop Lefebvre, his sons remained with him. Let us consider the consequences of that for a moment.

These same priests who today reject the validity of the confessions heard and marriages witnessed by the Society, were themselves hearing confession and witnessing marriages, all the while operating under the appearance of a suspension a divinis.

Today, those same priests who argue that the Society acts disobediently, that the Society’s lack of canonical regularity (through no fault of its own) is itself a crime worthy of condemnation, operated for over a decade “disobediently” and “without canonical regularity.”

It was the consecrations that separated them from the Archbishop. Until then they followed him in his fight for the Faith. That was a bridge too far. All good and well – at least from the perspective of the article in question – assuming those same priests maintained their defense of the Faith – warning the faithful of the grave scandal which ever more emanates from the Sovereign Pontiff and the hierarchy who assist him in the Church’s governance.

But that this is not the case is evident to everyone! Where was the public defense of the Faith in light of the later Assisi meetings? Where the cry to the faithful against the erroneous push for religious liberty among the U.S. Bishops? One priestly society in the “Ecclesia Dei camp” even takes its young faithful to the scandalous World Youth Days held every few years[SC- The Author may be referring to this: https://www.remnantnewspaper.com/Archives/archive-2005-1015-world_youth_day.htm ].

Shared parishes, silence on doctrinal matters, participation in diocesan events, money to diocesan ventures contrary to the Faith: the list goes on forever.

To be clear, this is a painful piece to write. I am personally grateful and happy for the work done by the priests of these groups in promoting the traditional Mass, and in exposing many of the faithful throughout the world to the beauties of true Catholic liturgical life. The solid moral foundation offered by these priests is a balm to souls in an ecclesial environment gone mad, but let us at least be honest with one another.

There is no point in pretending that “I’m okay – you’re okay.” The Society and those orders aligned with it have maintained a constant defense of the Faith for 40+ years, weathering the abuse of prelates and false friends, to this day continually attacked for refusing to burn incense in front of the modernist gods of religious liberty, ecumenism, and collegiality. Deo Gratias. It is the will of God, and God will determine when He will end this crisis.

But let us not pretend that soldiers who have gone into a retreat are fighting the same battle as those holding the line. If they were, the situation would be much different.

Please God, the day may soon come when all may stand together in the fight. Today, sadly, that is not the case.”

 

H.E. Bp. Bernard Fellay: “First of all, all the Ecclesia Dei members understand that if we would not have had bishops, they would not exist. Directly or indirectly, they depend on the Society’s life. That is very, very clear. And now the fruits of their apostolates are totally subjected to the good will of the local bishops. They drastically limit any solid desire to establish traditional Catholic life by limiting the possibilities of the apostolate in that direction. They are obliged to mix with the novelties of Vatican II, the world, and the Novus Ordo. This is the great difference between the Society and Ecclesia Dei groups.

I do see that some Ecclesia Dei groups are getting closer to us. This is definitely not all of them, though.”

 

A few other highly recommended resources:

Fr. Nicholas Gruner and Fr. Paul Kramer on the FSSP:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mghxuwo-Gec
Canon Gregory Hesse on the SSPX vs. Ecclesia Dei Orders:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HqwlKEEtiwU
An excellent, strong, and balanced letter from Fr. Arnaud Rostand, SSPX, regarding Summorum Pontificum and our attendance at Motu Proprio Masses: http://www.fsspx.com/Documents/Fr-Rostand/2008_June.htm
An insightful article from Laramie Hirsch:  http://thehirschfiles.blogspot.com/2016/05/the-fssp-harbors-aggressive-resentment.html
On the Paul VI rites of ordination and consecration, which most of these priests are ordained under(to help settle confusion in this regard): http://sspx.org/en/must-priests-who-come-tradition-be-re-ordained
Sources used in the post:
~ Steven C.

 

 

FSSP German Superior compromises on Tradition in interview

A blessed feast of St. Joseph the Worker!  http://sspx.org/en/news-events/news/may-1-feast-st-joseph-worker

http://www.onepeterfive.com/fssp-superior-distinguishes-fraternity-from-sspx-eschews-traditionalist-label/

Last week, Fr. Bernhard Gerstle, German District Superior of the Fraternity of St. Peter, gave an interview to the German Bishops’ official website.  This interview made headlines on several traditional websites for statements made concerning the SSPX, conciliar texts, and Tradition in general.  In short, the authors of this blog do affirm that good Catholics faithful to Eternal Rome are right to be scandalized by this interview, which made several compromises on Tradition.  However, we furthermore believe that this interview simply revealed further the erroneous positions held by the Ecclesia Dei Orders concerning Vatican II and the New mass.

The timing of this interview is quite coincidental since the author of this post was actually about to write an article concerning the Ecclesia Dei Orders and traditional Catholics’ attendance at Motu Proprio Masses.  That article will be posted later this week. In the meantime, I will elaborate on a few principles and apply them to this interview.

Admittedly, it is very difficult to address this issue because the Ecclesia Dei Orders are faithful in many respects.  These religious and their faithful are often among the most conservative Catholics in the “mainstream” Catholic structures and do possess a genuine love for the Traditional Mass and practices.  Also, there are many traditional Catholics who vehemently oppose any criticism regarding these Orders for the sake of “unity”.  The SSPX and like-minded Catholics are consequently upbraided for trying to divide for vain purposes.

I would answer by stating that in almost all ways, the SSPX and the Ecclesia Dei Orders are very much united.  Insofar as the latter upholds Sacred Tradition, there is no division.  However, for the sake of the Faith, the SSPX is required to recognize that there are some grave errors in the Vatican II documents themselves.  All Catholics are objectively bound to oppose these errors as well to remain Catholic.  Certainly unity is praiseworthy, but true doctrine must come first!  To recognize unity before the Truth is to fall into a common modern error.  We see in our universities, for example, the urge to recognize all lifestyles and cultures, even if we might personally feel uneasy about them. Nonsense! This violates the basic Law of Non-Contradiction. Certainly we are obliged out of Charity to acknowledge the good of these Orders, but we must disagree with their position on the Vatican II documents.

Bp. Bernard Fellay: “First of all, all the Ecclesia Dei members understand that if we would not have had bishops, they would not exist. Directly or indirectly, they depend on the Society’s life. That is very, very clear. And now the fruits of their apostolates are totally subjected to the good will of the local bishops. They drastically limit any solid desire to establish traditional Catholic life by limiting the possibilities of the apostolate in that direction. They are obliged to mix with the novelties of Vatican II, the world, and the Novus Ordo. This is the great difference between the Society and Ecclesia Dei groups.”

We have elaborated on the errors of Vatican II in a previous post(https://damselofthefaith.wordpress.com/2016/11/18/errors-of-vatican-ii/).  Some claim that the FSSP does not officially recognize all of Vatican II.  The blanket acceptance of this Council has actually always been the official position of these Orders.  Just observe, for example, their full acceptance of the 1983 Code of Canon Law and the stated “preference” for the Traditional Mass because it better suits their charisma(not necessarily because it is THE Roman Rite of the Church).  One of the most essential missions of the FSSP is to study the Vatican II documents in order that they might all be better understood faithfully by Catholics.

FSSP Superior General Fr. John Berg: “With regard to the documents with passages that are unclear within the Second Vatican Council, there should be no cause for scandal. They simply need to be read in light of the full teaching Tradition of the Church. Of course, ultimately, these two cannot contradict. This is the work that needs to be done.”

Pope Francis: “By way of the celebration of the sacred Mysteries according to the extraordinary form of the Roman rite and the orientations of the Constitution on the Liturgy Sacrosanctum Concilium, as well as by passing on the apostolic faith as it is presented in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, may they contribute, in fidelity to the living Tradition of the Church, to a better comprehension and implementation of the Second Vatican Council.”

Let us now examine a couple of points Fr. Gerstle makes, as taken from the excellent above-linked article by Maike Hickson:

Father Gerstle insists that for the FSSP, the new 1983 Code of Canon Law is the standard.

SSPX.ORG:

Canon 844, §4 allows the administration of penance, anointing of the sick, and even holy communion to non-Catholics who manifest “Catholic faith” (vs. principle 7) in these sacraments.This used to be considered a mortal sin and was gravely forbidden (1917 Code of Canon Law, canon 731, §21) because it implicitly denies the dogma, “Outside the Church, no salvation” (principle 2).

Canon 1055, §1 no longer defines marriage by its primary end, the procreation of children, but mentions this only after a secondary end, the good of the spouses. And this latter, as we can see in the light of annulments now given, has become the essence of marriage [vs. principles 5 & 6]: the partners give each other their whole selves (and not just “the exclusive and perpetual right over the body of the partner as regards the acts capable in themselves of generating offspring,” 1917 Code of Canon Law, canon 1081, §2) for their self-fulfillment in wedlock (canon 1057, §2).

There is considered to be no marriage where one spouse cannot provide the other this help (canon 1095, 20 and 30, canon 1098, etc., cf. canon 1063, 40). Whence today’s annulments’ fiasco: in the United States, for example, there were 338 annulments granted in 1968; there were 59,030 in 1992.

Canon 336 codifies the collegiality of Vatican II. The “college of bishops,” a 20th century invention, is now made a permanent subject, together with the pope, of supreme and full power over the Universal Church. A bishop, moreover, participates in this universal jurisdiction by the mere fact of his consecration (cf. canon 375, §2).*

*This becomes all the more disconcerting when one considers the recognition now given by the Vatican to the Orthodox bishops. Cf., Pope Paul VI:

It is on the heads of the Churches, of their hierarchy, that the obligation rests to guide the Churches along the way that leads to full communion again. They ought to do this by recognizing and respecting each other as pastors of the flock of Christ entrusted to them…”

Quoted at Balamand, by the Joint International Commission for the Theological Dialogue between the Roman Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church, Final Statement §18 cf., §14; Ut Unum Sint §§50-63

These are but the most grave deficiencies; other defective points include the following:

  • mixed marriages (canons 1125, 1127),
  • diminution in censures (excommunication of freemasons, etc.),
  • the teaching of St. Thomas Aquinas is no longer strictly enjoined in seminaries (canons 251ff), and
  • general absolutions are more readily available (canons 961-963, etc.).

In passing, it is interesting to note that for Pope John Paul II the 1983 Code of Canon Law had less weight than a conciliar constitution.

“This notion I do not like at all to hear. We are not traditionalists, but simply Catholic.”

This is not entirely incorrect.  As Catholic Truth Scotland Patricia McKeever notes: “…we should not need labels such as “traditionalist” because ALL Catholics should be adhering to both Tradition and Scripture. In the current crisis, these labels have sprung up to distinguish those who go along with the revolutionary changes in the Church post-Vatican II, and those who do not.”

However, I do think Fr. Gerstle’s reasoning for making such a statement is probably more spurious.  Catholic Truth blogger “Athanasius” observes:  “The real reason why Father Gerstle doesn’t like to use the word Traditional is that he would then be forced to admit that there is a serious problem in the Church since Vatican II that strongly resembles the Modernist crisis predicted by the pre-conciliar Popes, particularly St. Pius X. He wants a foot in each camp, Tradition without the persecution, heaven without the Cross, which is what he gets with his present stance. The only problem with his position is that it is not honest, and I think his conscience troubles him about that. Hence the reason why he doesn’t want to distinguish between Traditional and Modernist liberal Catholics. Everyone knows that the divide exists, just look at the devastation in the Church since the latter usurped the positions of influence in Rome and elsewhere.

So what is the real reason why Fr. Gerstle dislikes the use of the word Traditional? It has to be conscience. I simply do not believe that he is genuinely convinced that all Catholics today fundamentally believe and practice the same ancient faith that came down unsullied for almost two thousand years to the fateful Vatican II. He’s too educated a man to believe such nonsense.”

Certain elements of the new liturgy could be “enriching for the extraordinary form of the Roman Rite.”

The Ottaviani Intervention: “It is evident that the Novus Ordo has no intention of presenting the faith as taught by the Council of Trent, to which, nonetheless, the Catholic conscience is bound forever. With the promulgation fo the Novus Ordo, the loyal Catholic is thus faced with a most tragic alternative.”

The Traditional Rite is the only true form of the Roman Rite.  The New mass is not a licit rite and objectively cannot be attended by Catholics, except for passive reasons: http://sspx.org/en/faq-page/what-is-wrong-with-the-novus-ordo-missae-faq5

The Fraternity of St. Peter, however, has accepted to study without prejudice the conciliar texts and has come to the conclusion that there is no breach with any previous magisterial statements. 

I will provide just one example to challenge this ridiculous assertion.  Lumen Gentium 16: “In the first place amongst these there are the Muslims, who, professing to hold the faith of Abraham, along with us adore the one and merciful God, who on the last day will judge mankind.”  This sentence is both heretical and blasphemous.  The Moslems do not worship the One, Triune God as we do.  Just read the language, if you dare, that the Koran ascribes to those who believe in the Holy Trinity.  Does Fr. Gerstle really believe that this statement of Vatican II does not contradict an earlier Church teaching?

But, in the meantime, Rome has already made here concordant clarifications which the Society of St. Pius X should now also recognize.

Abp. Pozzo, among many others actually in charge of the SSPX-Rome Discussions, are not insisting that the Society accept the erroneous Vatican II positions.

As Catholics, he says, “we appreciate tradition,” but without “completely blocking organic adaptations and changes.”

Louie Verrecchio comments: “I suppose he means such “organic changes” as those concerning the Church’s view of the Jews in our time who are pleased to reject Christ yet are now considered to be one with us in the Cross (NA 4), or the heretic communities that we now understand as being used by Christ as means of salvation (UR 3), or maybe the newly discovered right that man has to practice whatever religion he chooses both publicly and privately – a right that comes from man’s own dignity, no less (DH 2).

Then again, maybe Fr. Gerstle was referring to the “organic changes” that brought about the Novus Ordo Missae…”

Father Gerstle further distances himself from those smaller groups within the SSPX – whom he calls “hardliners” – who “reject the Second Vatican Council to a large extent, for example with regard to religious freedom or as to the decree on ecumenism.” Some of them, he says, also doubt the validity of the new liturgy.

I do not doubt that Fr. Gerstle might know a few SSPX priests personally, but I do not trust this analysis at all.  Just read his remarks on the number of priests who disagreed with the Econe Consecrations.  However, a few clarifications should be made.  The official SSPX(aka Catholic) position on Vatican II is that some of the documents are perfectly fine, some are ambiguous, and some are directly erroneous(such as on the aforementioned subjects of Religious Liberty and Ecumenism). I have attended SSPX Chapels since I was 5 years old and know personally at least a third of the priests in the U.S. District and many more residing in other countries.  I have never known any of these priests to not fully agree with this position.  I have also never seen any official SSPX publication disagree with this position.  This is true also for virtually all of our faithful, even those newer to Tradition.

The SSPX does not doubt, in itself, the validity of the Novus Ordo Missae, but holds that many of these masses may be invalid because of common additional abuses introduced into the rite.  If an individual SSPX priest would happen to disagree on these positions regarding Vatican II and the New mass, he is not allowed to proclaim them publicly.  If there is trouble in this regard, he is expelled from the Society.

For almost all of the Society’s history, there have been conciliar prelates who claimed that a large number of the Society’s priests did not agree with the Society’s positions.  This has been proven wrong time and time again.  One can only wonder if such statements are not made to simply scatter and divide the little remnant.

Let us above all pray for our traditional priests, that they remain firm!  Let us also resolve to always love and support our priests who have bravely opposed the Revolution and continue to do so to this day!

~ Steven C.

Sources used:

http://archives.sspx.org/superior_generals_news/reflections_on_25th_anniversary_of_1988_consecrations.htm

https://www.remnantnewspaper.com/Archives/archive-2007-0715-fr-berg.htm

http://cfnews.org/page88/files/59c958e25cf166a089be9c8c4846898d-159.html

FSSP: Two Masses Enrich Each Other

https://akacatholic.com/fraternity-of-st-peter-a-conciliar-attitude-on-display/

 

 

 

Bp. Fellay’s declaration against Rome’s commemoration of the Protestant Revolt

In lieu of the article prepared for today, we made the decision to post instead this freshly released declaration from Bp. Bernard Fellay regarding this 500th Anniversary of Luther’s rebellion.  It is stunning and evil to consider that these Church authorities would dare celebrate the actions of an excommunicated priest that would consequently fracture Christendom to this day.  However, we must realize that Modernist Rome is only carrying out the principles established at Vatican II, statements influenced by Freemasonry present in the texts themselves.  God bless our good priests and bishops who fight these grave errors despite endless persecutions!

We must continue praying, as the Bishop implores, for the Pope and Bishops to not delay any further and consecrate Russia to Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart.  This is the answer that God has given mankind to emerge from these terrible, endless conflicts afflicting the world and the Church.  Let us hasten the great restoration of Christendom!

~ Steven C.

http://fsspx.news/en/content/29364

Luther’s private judgment denies the need for supernatural authority and makes unity in the Truth impossible.

Dear Friends and Benefactors,

Five hundred years ago, Martin Luther rebelled against the Church, taking a good third of Europe along with him. It was probably the most significant loss that the Catholic Church has had to suffer during her entire history, after the Eastern Schism of 1054. He thus deprived millions of souls of the necessary means of salvation, separating them not just from one religious organization among others, but actually from the one Church founded by Our Lord Jesus Christ, denying its supernatural reality and the necessity of it for salvation. He completely distorted the Faith, rejecting its fundamental dogmas, which are the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, the Real Presence in the Eucharist, the priesthood, the papacy, grace, and justification.

At the foundation of his thinking, which even today is that of Protestantism as a whole, is private judgment. This principle amounts to denying the need for a supernatural, infallible authority that can impose itself on particular judgments and decide debates between those whom she is commissioned to guide along the path to Heaven. This principle, which is claimed explicitly, quite simply renders the act of supernatural faith impossible, since the latter is based on the submission of the intellect and the will to the Truth revealed by God and taught authoritatively by the Church.

Private judgment, set up as a principle, not only cuts off access to the supernatural faith which is the way of salvation (“He that believeth not shall be condemned,” Mk 16:16), but also makes unity in the Truth impossible. He thus established in principle for Protestants the impossibility of eternal salvation and of unity in the Truth. And in fact the number of Protestant sects has not stopped increasing since the 16th century.

In the face of such a distressing spectacle, who would not understand the maternal efforts made by the true Church of Christ to look for the lost sheep? Who would not welcome the many apostolic attempts to liberate so many souls locked up in that fallacious principle that forbids them access to eternal salvation? This concern for their return to the unity of the true Faith and of the true Church runs through the centuries. It is not at all new; consider the prayer recited on Good Friday:

Let us pray for heretics and schismatics, that our Lord God may deliver them from all errors and may deign to bring them back to our Holy Mother, the Catholic and Apostolic Church.

Almighty and ever-living God, who savest all and dost not wish that any one should perish, look at the souls deceived by the diabolical fraud, so that the hearts of those who err, having set aside all heretical perversity, might repent and return to the unity of Thy truth. Through our Lord Jesus Christ.

This traditional language leaves no room for the confusion that is so widespread today in the name of a false ecumenism. The warnings of the Congregation of the Sacred Office in 1949, following several papal documents, the most important of which is certainly the Encyclical by Pius XI, Mortalium Animos (1928), these fair warnings seem now to be a dead letter. Nevertheless, the dangers of this ecumenical irenicism, which was denounced by Pius XII in Humani Generis (1950), are immense and extremely serious, because it discourages conversions to Catholicism. What Protestant, seeing the “riches” and the “venerable traditions” of Luther’s Reform being praised, would feel the need to convert? Besides, the very word “conversion” is currently banished from the official Catholic vocabulary when it is a question of other Christian denominations.

Furthermore this new attitude, made up of praises for Protestantism and apologies for Catholicism, causes the loss of faith in countless Catholics—this is an observable fact. Every survey inquiring about the faith of Catholics shows the ravages resulting from this frightening alignment with Protestantism. How many Catholics are affected in the 21st century by what the Church condemned, until the Council, by the name of indifferentism? A fatal error that claims that the whole world is saved, whatever one’s religion may be. An error diametrically opposed to the teaching of Our Lord Himself and of the whole Church after Him. Nevertheless, if someone denounces this error against the two-thousand-year-old Catholic Faith, he is immediately branded as a fanatic or a dangerous extremist.

The new liturgy, too, was invented in the name of this new ecumenism. It has so many parallels with the Protestant Lord’s Supper that several Protestant theologians, for example, Max Thurian in Taizé, have been able to state that it is possible for their co-religionists to use the new Catholic missal. And during this time the children of the Catholic Church found themselves deprived of the most beautiful treasures of divine worship and of grace. Thank God, Benedict XVI courageously declared that the many-centuries-old liturgy had never been abolished, but—for more than 40 years, throughout the world—the postconciliar liturgical reform drove millions of the faithful from the churches, because they no longer found what they expected of the Catholic Church.

How can anyone be surprised, then, that this ecumenism, which is supposed to promote the unity of Christians, makes but little progress?

Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, from the Council on, denounced this new way of dealing with the Protestants that took shelter under the name of ecumenism. In fact, this very elastic term expresses a general manner of seeing and doing that was introduced into the Church at the time of Vatican II. We are talking about an ostentatious benevolence toward all human beings, a determination to no longer condemn error, a search all over the map for “what unites us” rather than what separates us…. And what ought to have been only the first step in a journey toward unity, within the framework of a captatio benevolentiae [a rhetorical gesture to win good will], rapidly turned into a pursuit for its own sake that became an end in itself; an unending quest for an undefined truth. It then strayed from its objective purpose: the return to the Church of those who have lost unity with her. Thus the meaning of the word ecumenism was changed, the concept of unity was modified, and the means of arriving at it were falsified.

In the past, the Church knew that she is the only true Church and proclaimed it loud and strong, but this traditional clarity has been replaced by a new, uncertain doctrine—a mixture of apologetic self-denigration and post-modern relativism (for example, “we do not possess the whole truth”), which currently leads a majority of Catholics to reject the statement that there is only one way of salvation, and that we have it from Jesus Christ Himself that “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No man cometh to the Father, but through me” (Jn 14:6).

The dogma “Outside the Church there is no salvation” has been changed surreptitiously by confused ideas, to the point of altering the statement that the Church of Christ and the Catholic Church are identical. Cardinal Walter Kasper, then-President of the Council for Promoting Christian Unity, saw the new definition of the Church (subsistit in; “subsists in”) as the thing that quite simply made possible the ecumenism that has been promoted since the Council. Coming from a figure like that, this is a fitting admission that should be taken seriously!

That, in a few words, is why we cannot celebrate joyfully the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation. Quite the contrary, we lament this cruel division. Following Our Lord, we pray and work so that the lost sheep might find again the path that will lead them safely to salvation, the path of the Holy Roman Catholic Church.

We pray also that this illusory irenicism will soon be abandoned and that in its place a true movement of conversion may be reborn, like the one that existed before the Council, particularly in English-speaking countries.

Finally, during this centenary of the apparitions of Our Lady to the three shepherd children of Fatima, we pray also that the requests of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary may be heard. She promised the conversion of Russia, when the Supreme Pontiff will be so kind as to consecrate this country explicitly to her Immaculate Heart. Let us redouble our prayers and sacrifices, so that the promise of the Mother of God may become a reality, without delay.

With her Divine Son, cum prole pia, may she deign to bless you during this Easter season and lead us all to eternal happiness.

Easter Sunday 2017
+ Bernard Fellay