Category Archives: Uncategorized

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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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

 

 

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.

100th Anniversary of the first Apparition of the Mother of God at Fatima

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100 years since the Virgin proclaimed the greatness of our Faith and the importance of her Angelic Salutation of the Rosary. 100 years since she warned us to return to her Son in repentance so as to avoid the chastisements that would come, as a result of failing to consecrate Russia to Her Immaculate Heart. To this day, they have failed to heed her warning and have reaped the results – two world wars, Communism with the host of evils that have resulted, and persecution of the Church by the Modernists that have attacked every aspect of the Church.

To describe this day in a Dickensonian manner: “It was the most beautiful of anniversaries and the most dire of anniversaries”.

What a true honor it should be for every Catholic to witness such a milestone in the history of the Church and the world.  Certainly we should give this day great honor and celebrate with appropriate jubilation.  However, we must not imitate the example of those clergy and laymen who wish to confine Fatima to a status of irrelevancy and unimportance.  At Fatima, Our Lady has given us the Message specifically meant for our times.  Catholics living in our age are called to foster a devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and to live a life of sacrifice, like she asked for at Fatima. In doing our part, hopefully we can help to hasten the coming peace, when the Pope and Bishops finally open Our Lady and consecrate Russia to Her Immaculate Heart.

Our sacrifice need not be unpleasant, rather it should be a cross of joy!  If not taken with love, it is no sacrifice at all.  Although we may have much to suffer, Our Lady has assured us that “the grace of God will be your comfort”.  We will save so many souls by our sacrifices!  The great sacrifice in our day is definitely the fact that faithful Catholics are so thoroughly spurned by not only the world, but also most of the hierarchy in the Church.  We also hear constantly of wars and rumors of wars, as Our Lady predicted.  Finally, the Blessed Mother could not be accurate in stating that Russia will spread her errors across the entire world.  This exactly has happened.  Communism is not primarily based off of physical protection, but atheistic materialism.  Who could not deny that the entire West has fallen prey to this evil?  Just consider, for example, the candidate France has chosen to lead them.  Alas, the Eldest Daughter of the Church!

Despite this grave situation, we must nevertheless possess a great Hope.  Our Lady is our last hope in these times. The triumph of the Immaculate Heart is fast approaching!  We must remain faithful to our 5 decades daily and our First Saturday devotion.  Be sure to ask your traditional pastor for permission to fulfill the First Saturday conditions on Sunday if your chapel does not offer Mass on Saturday or if you are unable to attend on this day. Our Lord and Our Lady have permitted this so that all Catholics, even in these difficult times, may practice this devotion.  We can save so many souls if we just make use of the means God gives us. Above all, we must beg Heaven for the Holy Father to finally consecrate Russia with the world’s bishops.  But let us be assured; Tradition continues to grow and the great restoration is approaching!  

We both wish to express our appreciation to our pastor for the beautiful Rosary procession he has planned for tomorrow in commemoration of this anniversary.  We also commend those in Tradition who will be appropriately acknowledging the height of this day.  I wish to highlight one particular example for the edification of our readers.  On this day, Bp. Bernard Fellay will be traveling to the Philippines to consecrate a new church for St. Bernard’s Noviciate in Iloilo.  After 15 years of celebrating Mass in a garage, the Noviciate has built a magnificently beautiful building to honor the Blessed Sacrament.  A couple of photos will follow this post. 

A short poem in honor of Our Lady (with thanks to Fr. Alain Lorans, SSPX): 

Mary Immaculate, Star of the morning,
Chosen before the creation began,
Chosen to bring, for Thy bridal adorning,
Woe to the serpent and rescue to man.

Sinners, we honor Thy sinless perfection;
Fallen and weak, for Thy pity we plead;
Grant us the shield of Thy Sovereign protection,
Measure Thine aid by the depth of our need.

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Our Lady of the Holy Rosary of Fatima, ora pro nobis!

~Damsel of the Faith & Knight of Tradition

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.

 

 

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