Monday, May 29, 2017
Sunday, May 28, 2017
|Saint Peter's Basilica|
I was recently reflecting on my Family Tree. On the Paternal side: Irish Catholic.
On the Maternal side: German and English Protestant. My Mother’s conversion to Catholicism brought back to the Faith branches of the Family Tree which had strayed for over 450 years.
“The evil that men do lives after them….” Shakespeare has Mark Antony say. It is so very true!
What a pity when it is even done to one's children, as must have happened.
|MARTIN LUTHER Death Mask|
The outrageous nature of such an act comes sharply into focus when we consider Our Lord’s description of our relationship in the Church to Him:
“I am the Vine; you are the branches…..”
These two sinning, arrogant, lustful men literally tore the branches away from “the Vine.” And not just once, but on and on for generation after generation.
|KING HENRY VIII|
Like every person in serious error, these successive generations sought to justify their false position by greater and greater error. So we see a multiplying of the number of Protestant sects and at a constantly increasing rate-Presbyterians, Methodists, Congregationalists, Unitarians, Mormons, Latter Day (!!) Saints and on and on , at such a rate that in the U.S.A. alone the number of Protestant sects has gone from 20,000 to 40,000 in about 60 years. And Henry’s Church of England in its decrepitation, has long since gone beyond parody.
Scientists have very recently reported the discovery that Cancer cells are very much more sophisticated than they had believed. Not only do they multiply at an alarming rate, but they actively disable the defences of healthy cells adjoining them.
The cancerous growth of Protestantism has sought to invade the Church since Vatican II through the back door with false ecumenism. “”Niceness” has become prized by some in place of Truth, “Shared Values” in place of Principles and Sacred Tradition which comes to us from the Apostles, they would put aside to accommodate the inclinations of our “separated brethren”.
Thank God for our truly Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI, who gently but firmly cuts through humbug and falsity and vigorously pursues authentic ecumenism which leads those in error back to unity in the Catholic Church.
The errant behavior of Luther and Henry VIII are for God Himself to judge. The sad results for hundreds of millions since their time are difficult to address and have required a long term view. The broken branches have withered where they fell and fertilized myriad coarse weeds. We need to pray for the Holy Father’s success to increase more and more, adding luster to his well earned title of the Pope of Christian Unity.
Catholic Again indeed! For my family a return to Justice and Life with Christ in the Communion of Saints. What a beautiful thought.
And now, with the Ordinariate of Our Lady of the Southern Cross to be established on 15th June, 2012, thousands more former Anglicans will bring their families back to the Communion of Saints in Christ's Catholic Church ! Thanks be to God and His Vicar on Earth, the Pope of Christian Unity, Benedict XVI "gloriously reigning"as the lovely old phrase goes!
|ST.BENEDICT'S BROADWAY , SYDNEY AS IT IS TO-DAY, AND THE|
ADJOINING NOTRE DAME UNIVERSITY
Archbishop of Sydney
24 February 2012
Today is the 150th anniversary of the first consecration of a church in Australia, when the English Benedictine Archbishop John Bede Polding consecrated St. Benedict's church. I am wearing his ring and carrying his crozier for this Mass.
The first temporary structure was almost complete in December 1836 under the leadership of Father McEncroe. In July 1845 the foundation stone of our church designed by the renowned English architect Augustus Welby Pugin was laid by Archbishop Polding. In 1856 the spire was completed.
The Catholic story of this church has followed many twists and turns. Originally the district was populated by poor Irish immigrants and the first priests were English Benedictines, who used to ring their church bells as Archbishop Polding passed by on his return from his months of missionary visitation on horseback; to welcome him of course, but also to warn the priests at the Cathedral of his approach.
At one stage there were three Catholic schools on this site and many of us remember the derelict buildings and small congregation before the arrival of Notre Dame University.
In those days the Church building had to be paid for before a consecration could occur and to be admitted to the Church for the eight hour consecration ceremony, everyone had to pay ten shillings!
The old consecration rite included Exposition of Relics, sealing of each set of relics; chanting of Matins and Lauds; singing of Prime; sprinkling outer walls and ground with holy water; entrance procession; ritual placing of ashes at the cross formed on the cathedral floor; tracing of the letters of the Greek alphabet in the mounds of ashes, along one arm of the cross; same again with the Latin alphabet on the other arm; blessing of holy water with salt, to which wine was added; consecration of all the altars; procession around the interior three times to sprinkle all the walls; and a variety of other ceremonies, involving singing Litany of the Saints, incensation; unction of all the stones to be fixed to the walls. They concluded with a Pontifical Mass of the Dedication. Later, Vespers and Benediction. ETC!
Such lengthy ceremonies demonstrate to us the usefulness of liturgical reform. Not even Ezra after the return from exile to Jerusalem, continued the reading of the Law for eight hours. We are told the people escaped lightly as the reading only went from early morning till noon.
What was the old Church trying to say with its eight hour ceremony? I think they were ramming home to their congregation and especially to the participating bishops and priests, those most likely to be captured by repetition, that the Church building is holy, a sacred place, a gateway to heaven, where God is worshipped through Christ and the faithful obtain the medicine of immortality.
They did too much, at least by our standards, but we have swung too far in the opposite direction. We are losing our sense of the sacred.
Sometimes in a Church before Mass there is more friendly chatter, "community building", than there is in many homes where they eat together ranged around the television set. This is our loss and a grievous loss.
I am going to conclude by reading excerpts from the sermon preached at the consecration by Archpriest J.J. Therry, but before that I want to say a word or two about Therry.
Even by the harsh and exotic standards of early New South Wales, Therry was a remarkable character.
He fought with all of his religious superiors and many of his peers; he fought with the colonial authorities, and travelled incessantly to serve his poor, ignorant and often convict flock. Transportation had only stopped in N.S.W. in 1840, but continued in Western Australia until 1868. Convicts could be punished with 300 lashes.
Therry finished up a rich man with some confusion about what was his and what belonged to the Church. Among other things he donated the land for Riverview College to the Irish Jesuits rather than to the English Benedictine bishop. I am sure that it is misleading anti-Jesuit propaganda which alleges that a cordon of Jesuits surrounded him as he was dying less any approach him to change his will.
On one occasion he rode through the night to be present for the execution of a Catholic convict. He arrived in time to help. Unfortunately the Protestant minister who was assisting some other unfortunate wretches also under sentence fainted. Therry was not impressed.
After his dismissal from the post of official chaplain Governor Darling summed up his formidable rival. If we remember that Darling was an Englishman, who did not admire the Irish, he still captured much of the truth. The Governor wrote that "Mr. Therry is a man of strong feelings and not much discretion. He is evidently disposed to be troublesome, and, constituted as this colony is, might be dangerous .... He is indefatigable in his endeavours to preserve his influence among his countrymen, and is constantly going from place to place with this view. From the similarity of character, he can hardly fail to succeed ..."
For an account of some elements from the sermon also useful for us, I quote from the account in "The Empire" of February 25, 1862.
"At the conclusion of the Mass, the Very Rev. J.J. Therry, Arch-priest, preached the consecration sermon, turning his face to the people and addressing them in English". All the prayers of course were said in Latin by the priest with his back to the people, "facing God".
"St. Benedict, one of the 'little ones' referred to in the words of the Blessed Saviour-humble and teachable. He then related the early history of St. Benedict, who came to Rome to get learning, but meeting at school vicious youths, to shun their evil example fled to the wilderness. St. Gregory said of him that he (St. Benedict) was scienter nesciens et sapienter indoctus, because he preferred purity of manners and piety to learning without these. From the example of St. Benedict, [Father Therry] recommended that youth should be sent to schools presided over by the clergy.
"The very reverend preacher reminded his hearers of the holiness of the consecrated temple, and of the sin of profaning it. He appealed to the example of the two sons of Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, who were struck dead for profaning the altar of God, and of Heliogabulus, who by the order of his king Seleucus demanded of Onias, the sovereign pontiff, the treasures of the temple. No sooner had Heliogabulus insulted the High Priest, than a horseman appearing in the temple trampled him down, and two other horseman of extreme beauty perpetually followed him, and harassed him, until Onias interceded for him in prayer, and he was forgiven.
"And Solomon's splendid temple was not so dear to God [Father Therry explained] as that [St. Benedict's] in which they were seated. They had not, indeed, the ark of the covenant, the tables of the law, and Aaron's rod; but they had what was more precious in the sight of God, they had then the body and blood of His Son.... The very reverend preacher reminded his hearers that they, the whole company of the faithful, were the living temple of God. As their beloved archbishop had consecrated the church to God, he called upon them to consecrate themselves to God as his temple, to shun all sin which defiles the temple, and not to let the sufferings and labours of Christ be in vain as to them; for Jesus loved them, and gave himself for them".In these words we find the secrets to Therry's religious influence. He was a great priest, heroic in his hard work and sacrifices, genuine in his faith and devotion to Christ and the Church, even as he fought with all and sundry with undiminished zeal until the end of his life. His faith is the ancient faith, our faith, the source of Catholic vitality.
We thank God for all the blessings granted in this Church over 150 years in times good and bad, happy and sad. The Church now lies at the heart of a young, expanding Catholic university; a wonderful symbol. We thank God for this.
We pray that the worshipping community here in St. Benedict's will remain for decades and decades to come as a source of faith, hope and love, sending out streams of living water to the university and to the surrounding parishioners.
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
|Cardinal George Pell, then Metropolitan Archbishop of Sydney|
his geographical responsibilities were rather less than those of
the 27 yrs old Dr William Ullathorne!
Yes ,we might say that Cardinal Pell is "a tough cookie"but it is a compliment for the man who says that "All I do is teach what the Catholic Church teaches and do what the Catholic Church does, and let the chips fall where they may." God Bless him - if only Cardinal Ouellet could find us more like him , what a transformed Church we would have in Australia.
Thursday, May 25, 2017
|Rev Deacon ONYEAGOLU, Tochukwu|
"I can't believe I am a human being. I have searched for the meaning of a human being in the best of literature and humanities. The findings are sobering for me. The image of man found in the sacred pages of the scripture is too exotic. The book of Genesis, that sacred volume reveals man as the image of God. With all my flaws as a man, those golden words are not meant for me. Of man Shakespeare wrote: "What a piece of work is a man! How noble in reason, how infinite in faculty! In form and moving how express and admirable! In action how like an angel, in apprehension how like a god! The beauty of the world. The paragon of animals. And yet, to me, what is this quintessence of dust?" These ornate lines are beyond my constitution as a man. As a man, I have lived below the biblical and humanistic ideal of a real human being. Yet I am still a human being. O God! Why me?Why do I mean so much to you? The best have died. Some who could have been better than me had they existed, were not allowed to see the light of day. Yet you gave me life. It is not for any merit that I know. Life is a privilege. Let me never forget this truth.There is a saying that privilege blinds. Let me never be blinded by my privileges. As I say this, I call on history to educate me on the pitfalls of privilege. Let history always remind me of Marie Antoinette, the last Queen of France and Navarre before the French Revolution. Marie Antoinette is mostly remembered in history for one careless remark she made. When the noble French lady was told that French peasants had no bread to eat, she was quoted to have said: “Let them eat cake.” Her audience were stunned. How can poor peasants who could not afford ordinary bread be told to eat cake instead? Alas, wealth and royalty have spoiled this lady of gold and purple, this great matriarch from the bloodline of kings and rulers. The queen does not understand the poverty in the French of pre-revolution era. The remark probably reflects her majesty’s blindness from the privileges of French royalty.
Wednesday, May 24, 2017
Sunday, May 21, 2017
|CARDINAL MARADIAGA PROTEGE OF POPE FRANCIS|
The above report comes from Life Site News.
PROTECTOR AND PROTEGE
The comments of Cardinal Maradiaga are not only demonstrably erroneous , and plainly contrary to reality as anyone who has heard Cardinal Burke speak or seen his writings readily knows. But beyond that, these comments are loutish, crude and contemptible- entirely unworthy of any Cardinal. Here again we are forced to reflect on the fact that this unforunate man is a protege, confidant and aide to Pope Francis. He thus joins the sad ranks of such others as Cardinal Kasper, Cardinal Coccopalmerio, and others who Pope Francis has gathered close to himself.
Saturday, May 20, 2017
His Eminence asks : " How can the Church aim to counteract the deleterious effect of the preponderance of economism and its fundamental postulates?"
He ignores the question of how economies are to be managed at all without "economism". He is happier to remain with rhetoric.
The Cardinal tells us that the Council provided the answer in "Lumen Gentium" , with its "preferential option for the poor."And at the same time he promotes his fellow Latin American Bishops' Medellin Documents which he says, tell us that the preferential option for the poor" has to translate into denouncing injustice and oppression, into a Christian struggle against the intolerable situation often borne by the poor,into a willingness to dialogue with the groups responsible for that situation to make them understand their obligations".
As if to prove how out of touch with reality he is, and has been for a long time, His Eminence follows that quote with some of his own views : "Certainly, this Conciliar option made a good many Christians reconsider the curse of their own lives; it made many religious congregations review their rules and their way of life; it brought about in much of the episcopate, a spirit of reform, freedom and prophecy; and in numerous places martyrdom flourished as a consequence of the commitment to Liberation."
This last , is a virtually farcical misrepresentation of the destruction and unravelling of Religious life in so many places in the wake of the Council.It had nothing at all to do with the "preferential option for the poor".But it was a phenomenon so powerful that it prompted Pope Paul VI to make his famous statement that it was "as if the smoke of Satan had , through some fissure, penetrated the sanctuary".
We might just as readily have entitled this post " LEFT right out" for, in the sections that follow, from 5.1 onward, His Eminence comes to show himself as a radical Leftist of the type that used to be found "frothing at the mouth' haranguing Sunday Afternoon crowds in the Sydney Domain during the post War Communist era:
" The Church ought to proclaim and testify , as the criterion of sociopolitical organisation and education, that all men are brothers; and that, if we are brothers, we must fight for establishing relations of equality and to eliminate their greatest obstacles : money and power. We have to establish as a priority that those majorities who suffer poverty and exclusion(the last) will be the first. If Jesus calls the poor "blessed" is because he is assuring them that their situation is going to change, and consequently it is necessary to create a movement that can bring about such a thing, restoring dignity and hope to them. We have to give primacy to the last: "The original Christianity faces the rule of money and power as a means of domination and introduces a passion into history; that the last stop being the last, that behaviours are adopted and politics and economies are put into place to give them primacy, so a society can be built without first or last, or, at least, with less inequality between human beings called to be brothers." (R.Diaz Salazar La Izquierda y el cristianismo ( Left and Christianity) , Taurus , 1998, p 354)
Here, His eminence has encapsulated the ideas of Marxist Liberation Theology : that the Church is NOT about the transcendental activity of the salvation of souls, no, according to him, she is about the here and now, about creating a Heaven on Earth.
But this is NOT the intention of Our Lord Jesus Christ in this regard, and the distorted interpretation of the Beatitude "Blessed are the poor...." verges on blasphemy. For it is as clear as crystal in examining the Beatitudes and the entire teaching of Our Lord, that the promises He makes are not for fulfillment here on Earth, but in the next World.
"international politics of solidarity"
Yet on His Eminence runs, proclaiming : "the possibility of creating international politics of solidarity, and economic democracy, the assumption of evangelical poverty, attaining the creation of new social subjects, with a new set of anthropological values and a new purpose of both collective and personal life...." . Finally, to put a religious gloss on this political rant, as an afterthought it seems, he adds that it would all be "inspired in Christ and His Beatitudes".
This is arrogance , and infidelity of a very high order. It is truly deceitful to twist the Beatitudes from promises of Eternal reward to promises of Heaven on Earth.
At 5.2 His Eminence urges " detecting the causes of inequality, as part of his political policy.This is no more than the " structures of sin" concept so much abused by numerous villains.
At 5.3 His eminence again seeks to draw the mantle of Sacred Scripture around his political agenda , urging us to adopt a culture of being Good Samaritans - fair enough. But, after only two sentences he again lapses into Marxist polemics : "The Eurocentric .....freedom and....." and " In practice, the hyperventilation of the economy has produced great amounts of money, fruit of the erosion of governmental regulation and a symptom of the failure of materialism. But, as a result, there is always a particular category of victim : "the poor" ...."
At Section 6.0 His Eminence sets up a straw man - the Church is no longer profoundly humane! The Section is headed : " Returning to a profoundly humane Church" and continues " The Church could not continue posing as a reality facing the world, as a parallel "perfect society" which pursued her own course, strengthening her walls against the errors and influence of the world . This antithesis of centuries needed to be overcome.
The Council intended to apply the renovation within the Church herself, because the Church was not the Gospel, nor was she a perfect follower of the Gospel; she was inhabited by men and women, who, the same as everywhere else, and according to their limited sinful condition,had established within her many customs, laws and structures that did not respond to the teachings or the practice of Jesus."Perhaps this view is more representative of the false spirit of the Council than the Council documents themselves. It would be interesting to see His Eminence give an example to illustrate his outlandish claim.
Seeking to massage his American audience, he quotes well-regarded conservative Catholic author George Weigel with approval , to the effect that the Church " in the 21st Century is a Church of mission, an emerging Church". As if she has ever been anything else!
But of course Weigel is talking about the Church in Africa, and Asia.But, never one to let the facts get in the way of his ideas, His Eminence says that this offers 3 lines of action for the New Evangelisation :
6.1 Continuous Dialogue
Here His Eminence sets up another of his straw men :
"the Church, bearer of the Gospel, knew that she could not close her doors to dialogue without annulling the truth that could spring forth from anywhere - since God himself has generously planted it everywhere. The Church did not have a monopoly on truth anymore, nor could she pontificate on a thousand human matters, or hold stances denoting arrogance or superiority. Instead , she should go into the common arena, plainly and humbly , and share in the common search for truth."
Precisely where this nonsense leaves Our Divine Lord Jesus Christ and the Divine Truths He entrusted to His one true Church is doubtful.
The Catholic Church has never claimed "a monopoly on truth" but only on revealed Religious Truth and she does not do so out of "arrogance" ( yet its superiority is undeniable) - but rather out of obligation to God.
She cannot "go out in the common arena , plainly and humbly, and share in the common search for truth" .Her Divinely appointed role is to PROCLAIM the Truth revealed to her and entrusted to her by Christ.And 'dialogue" is for someone who is ready to negotiate to give something for something gained. But the Catholic Church cannot " negotiate" God's Truth .
There follows a paragraph that is so far from any authentic Catholicism as to make one wonder whether this Cardinal remains of sound mind:
" Dialogue should precede the mission , as a simple attitude of listening, to build on what is common , rather than to insist in what divides, and to count on the contribution of humanisms and of non-Christian religions , which will take us back to the foundation of any creed, any ideology." As the paragraph continues it degenerates from error into drivel : "What is Christian has its sub-strata, first and foremost, in what is human. One cannot be a Christian without being a person first. And the person offers a structure and a panoply of traits and possibilities that are patrimony to no-one in particular, but instead of humanity as a whole."
6.2 The New Evangelisation
Here His eminence lays religion aside, or rather converts it into an adjunct of political activism on the radical Left side of the political spectrum.He talks of what is "truly human" , " a ferment as well as a service", "the great human causes" and " political sainthood"(?) he goes on to envisage spreading the "new model of Christian living" through " small groups and communities". This line is not uncommon in South America among Marxist inspired "Church" groups.
But in reality the Catholic Church has adhered to Christ's injunction to go out into the whole world " - to engage the world as it is - not by retreating into little enclaves.
Then there occurs a sudden burst of rationality and His Eminence starts talking like a Catholic again.He draws attention to the importance of Blessed John Paul II's 1990 Encyclical "Redemptoris Missio " and 2001 Apostolic Letter " Novo Millenio Innuente" concerning the missionary character of the Church. However, the "wobblies" overcome him again and he opines that people will be attracted to the Faith by the "humanity of Christians" who "live in a human way".... So not by their holiness , nor by God's Grace, but by their humanity....but if that is so, why are they not just as likely to become Calathumpians, Bahai, Mohammedans or Falun Gong? Humanity is not enough. Jesus enjoined the Apostles to go out into the whole world and to teach all that He had taught. He did not send out political cadres!
At last we come to the Conclusion in which His Eminence criticises the Mass Media for setting up and executing a an "ambush" of the Catholic Church -leading to many Catholics separating from the Church.
In a rather muddled paragraph he pays tribute to Pope Benedict XVI and says that the "arrival of the person of Pope Francis" heralds a "new dynamic" in the history of Catholicism and refers to "signs of growth, of great vigour and hope" instancing World Youth Days, the development of Ecclesial movements, the young priests who are arising all over the World, the Lectio Divina, the new forms of Consecrated Life. All of these of course flourished under Bl.Pope John Paul II and Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI . Then, to satisfy his own political bent he stirs into the above "the grassroots communities".
At long last he draws to a close referring to Our Lord's comments on "New wine, new wineskins" . As he has done throughout the address, the Cardinal insinuates that the Catholic Church has left Jesus, and must return to Him.
This is outrageous rubbish. It indicates a determination NOT to see the Holy Spirit ALWAYS at work in the Church. And laughably, all the great signs of hope and vigour he sees are from the last 50 years - he shoots himself in the foot. But, for him, it appears that the Church must undergo a pastoral conversion (which) means returning to Jesus".
It is difficult, after wading through this wild rant, not to be seriously worried that this man is responsible for co-ordinating the Council of Cardinals charged with advising the Holy Father on the reform of the Curia among other things.
And he was selected for that role by the Holy Father personally.