02 March 2015

There Was Joy in the Catacombs

Not merely fear, but true joy.

Further to my post about learning from Jesus in the desert how to fight with joy, I have been wanting to provide a link to an Ann Barnhardt post called Plausible Hypothesis on What Exactly the “Abomination ofDesolation” Might Be, but haven't had the time to write the introduction to it that I wanted to make sure readers read first.  You see, I like her work. She is obviously intelligent, faithful, and willing to fight for the faith. She is an intense, pull-no-punches type, though, and since I don't necessarily agree with all of her positions I didn't want to get lots of emails lamenting the link and my intransigence, etc. 

You see, I don't mind disagreeing with people for whom I have respect, and I don't mind acknowledging agreement with others with whom I don't always agree.  I know this is common sense, but in the social media-driven, PC environment, filled with products of modern education systems, it needs to be stated.

Well, back to the link.  I was shaken out of my lethargy by a Jeff Culbreath post called Preparing for the Catacombs, that covered the Barnhardt post and added his own observations.

To sum up:  Barnhardt speculates on the possibility that the Synod against on the Family this October might produce a system that is the "abomination of desolation" about which Our Lord warned us. And she states what she would do about it.  Culbreath gives his own take, that the semi-underground network faithful Catholics have tapped into as a lifeline for the last couple of decades or more will be severely tested and much reduced. 

Read both posts. They are well worth your time.

My take on both?  I enjoy the speculation game as much as anyone. But whether the result of the Synod, should it abandon the very words of Our Lord on marriage and Holy Communion, is or isn't the abomination of desolation, it remains that it will be an unmitigated disaster.  And tremendous pressure will be brought to bear on faithful priests and on the faithful themselves.  One can easily see a purge within the Church on priests, and a secular persecution (undefended against by the official Church and with its tacit blessing) outside the Church on the lay faithful.

Our response must be faithfulness and joy.  As Cardinal Burke said, the victory is assured, but first, our way is the Way of the Cross. There will be suffering, but there must be joy, or else we are unworthy of the Name of Jesus. Our fathers embraced the catacombs and their own gruesome deaths, all for the sake of the Name. We must be grateful, joyful Christians, for we will be smeared as the schismatics and heretics.  So be it.

This is why prayer in advance of the Synod is so necessary, along with making our voices in defense of the truth known.  It would be very nice if this did not come to pass; we are told to pray that we be not led into temptation, but delivered from evil.  Martyrs, to be martyrs, need special graces, and now is not the time for presumption.

Again, referencing Cardinal Burke, we need to support each other and be close to each other more than ever now.


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