30 September 2014

Breitbart Runs Confirmation of Burke Move

The rumors have been out there for a while. The rumors have been reported as credible for a while, too. The big questions, I suppose, for any naive Catholics left these days, were two:

1. Would the Pope sack the Cardinal before or after the Synod against on the Family, which begins on October 5?

2. Would the backlash against this seemingly mean-spirited, petty and unjust move cause the Pope to change his mind-- not in removing Burke, but at least moving him in a more dignified fashion and to a more appropriate position?

The first question remains unanswered by this article from Breitbart, while the second question is answered "no".

I post it for the record, and also to give you a general caution on Internet news. The author of the piece is undoubtedly right, but there are two links within the story to Saint Louis Catholic blog. So, we may be scraping the bottom of the barrel here. #humblebrag ;-)

In any event, keep praying for Cardinal Burke, for the Pope, and for this Synod. The Rosary novena for the protection of the family continues to October 7.

We need help.

29 September 2014

Unwelcome Visitors Seem to Be the Norm

I almost made it through an entire day without reading some distressing Church news.  But I have to post this one, as it could be very distressing, and will hit close to home.  The NCReporter has the story and at least one other blog is picking up on it.

The rumor is that Pope Francis has assigned a visitor to His Excellency, Bishop Robert Finn of Kansas City-St. Joseph, with an eye on giving him the axe assessing his leadership.

Some context is in order.  Lots of dioceses have had problems with the clergy abuse scandal for a long time.  Since 2002, when Boston first broke, others have followed.  Some prelates have been disciplined, but not many.  Pope Benedict, just prior to his election to the See of Peter, lamented the "filth" that had congealed in the Church's ranks.  Since his unfortunate decision to abdicate, and the arrival of Francis, it seems that the discipline or leniency shown to clerics on the hot seat (for any reason, not just sexual abuse stuff) depends upon their doctrinal orthodoxy or heterodoxy. 

Marxist priest gets rehabilitated.  Irish priest who holds heterodox views on Catholic teaching on human sexuality gets rehabilitated.  Openly homosexual priest who calls for change to Catholic teaching concelebrates Mass with Francis, and gets his hands kissed in the bargain.

On the other hand, the traditionally-minded Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate get destroyed for "crypto-Lefebvrianism".  The more or less traditionally-minded bishop of Ciudad del Este is sacked for defending a priest with accusations of sexual misconduct (like the Rorate story, I am not in any way saying the deposition of the bishop is not justified, but am pointing out the seeming arbitrariness of the action in light of the favor shown to worse cases on the opposite side of the "political" aisle).

The commonality between the two situations in the above paragraph is this: in each case an apostolic visitor was sent prior to the action.  Correlation is not causation, but I just note the correlation.  Why?

Because Francis has sent a visitor to Kansas City-St. Joseph.  I personally believe that Bishop Finn was the victim of an unfair and malicious prosecution that ended with his misdemeanor guilty plea.  And he is not, nor has ever been, accused of sexual misconduct.  The misdemeanor was for an alleged failure to report conduct by a priest whom he inherited in Kansas City which, though perverse, did not include sexual contact.  Again, not defending the actions of the priest, just stating what it is, and isn't.  And note, too, that like the Bishop of Ciudad del Este, Bishop Finn is affiliated with Opus Dei.  I suppose their influence in Rome is not ascendant.

So, there you have it.  I post this for the record, and ask readers to pray for Bishop Finn.  From what I know of him, he is a good man and a quality bishop.  Reading the NCR post, it sure seems that finding people to put their finger in the air and follow the direction of the current wind to pillory this man is not difficult.

St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle!


Dear Readers, a very happy and blessed feast of St. Michael the Archangel.  From today's Epistle:

In those days God signified the things which must shortly come to pass, sending by His angel to His servant John, who had given testimony to the word of God, and the testimony of Jesus Christ, whatever things that he had seen. Blessed is he who read and heard the words of this prophecy, and kept those things which are written in it, for the time is at hand...

And a very timely prayer...

O Glorious Archangel St. Michael, Prince of the heavenly host, be our defense in the terrible warfare which we carry on against principalities and powers, against the rulers of this world of darkness, spirits of evil.  Come to the aid of man, whom God created immortal, made in His own image and likeness, and redeemed at a great price from the tyranny of the devil.  Fight this day the battle of the Lord, together with the holy angels, as already thou hath fought the leader of the proud angels, Lucifer, and his apostate host, who were powerless to resist thee, nor was there place for them any longer in heaven.  That cruel, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil or Satan, who seduces the whole world, was cast into the abyss with his angels.  Behold, this primeval enemy and slayer of men has taken courage.  Transformed into an angel of light, he wanders about with all the multitude of wicked spirits, invading the earth in order to blot out the name of God and of His Christ, to seize upon, slay, and cast into eternal perdition souls destined for the crown of eternal glory.  This wicked dragon pours out, as a most impure flood, the venom of his malice on men of depraved mind and corrupt heart, the spirit of lying, of impiety, of blasphemy, and the pestilent breath of impurity, and of every vice and iniquity.  These most crafty enemies have filled and inebriated with gall and bitterness the Church, the spouse of the immaculate Lamb, and have laid impious hands on her most sacred possessions.  In the Holy Place itself, where has been set up the See of the most holy Peter and the Chair of Truth for the light of the world, they have raised the throne of their abominable impiety, with the iniquitous design that when the Pastor has been struck, the sheep may be scattered.  Arise then, O invincible Prince, bring help against the attacks of the lost spirits to the people of God, and give them the victory.  They venerate thee as their protector and patron; in thee holy Church glories as her defense against the malicious power of hell; to thee has God entrusted the souls of men to be established in heavenly beatitude.  Oh, pray to the God of peace that He may put Satan under our feet, so far conquered that he may no longer be able to hold men in captivity and harm the Church.  Offer our prayers in the sight of the Most High, so that they may quickly conciliate the mercies of the Lord; and beating down the dragon, the ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, do thou again make him captive in the abyss, that he may no longer seduce the nations.  Amen.

26 September 2014

Isaias 62:1

Regarding this article by Christoper Ferrara, I will repeat what he himself says:

A caution to the reader: What follows is a very harsh assessment of the current pontificate. I felt compelled to write it, but no one is compelled to read it. I am nothing and nobody in the great scheme of things...

If you want no part of it, that's your call. But I think there is a ton of truth in it, and that it merits attention.

Pray for the Holy Father and the Church!

Lighting a Candle for Marriage

Instead of merely cursing the darkness threatened by the upcoming Synod on the Family, what follows are some brief excerpts from the book Remaining in the Truth of Christ, which has garnered media attention in the run up to the event.

This summary comes from the SSPX's US website, and I must say they deserve credit for this, as well as for their call for a Rosary Novena to be prayed in defense of the family from September 29 (Michaelmas) to October 7 (Feast of Our Lady of the Holy Rosary).

Enjoy the excerpts from this book, adhering to the truth of marriage as pronounced by the Savior Himself.

Remaining in the Truth of Christ: some book excerpts

Remaining in the Truth of Christ: Marriage and Communion in the Catholic Church (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, available October, 2014), 311 pp., $24.95. Edited by Rev. Robert Dodaro, O.S.A.

1. The Argument of the Debate
Fr. Robert Dodaro, O.S.A., President of the Patristic Institute, Augustinianum (Rome)

“The essays in this volume represent the responses of five Cardinals of the Roman Catholic Church and four other scholars to the book The Gospel of the Family, published earlier this year by Walter Cardinal Kasper. Kasper’s book contains the address he gave during the Extraordinary Consistory of Cardinals held on February 20-21, 2014.” (p. 11)

“The authors of this volume jointly contend that the New Testament presents Christ as unambiguously prohibiting divorce and remarriage on the basis of God’s original plan for marriage set out at Genesis 1:27 and 2:24. The ‘merciful’ solution to divorce advocated by Cardinal Kasper is not unknown ‘in the ancient Church, but virtually none of the writers who survive and whom we take to be authoritative defend it; indeed when they mention it, it is rather to condemn it as unscriptural. There is nothing surprising in that situation; abuses may exist occasionally, but their mere existence is no guarantee of their not being abuses, let alone being models to be followed.’ ...These are not a series of rules made up by the Church; they constitute divine law, and the Church cannot change them.” (pp. 34-35)

II. Dominical [i.e., Jesus’] Teaching on Divorce and Remarriage: The Biblical Data
Paul Mankowski, S.J., Scholar-in-Residence at the Lumen Christi Institute (Chicago)

“Reacting to Jesus’ pronouncement that remarriage after divorce is adultery, his disciples said to him, ‘If such is the case of a man with his wife, it is better not to marry’ (Mt 19:10). From the first moment of its declaration, the teaching Jesus propounded as the will of God was deeply distressing, even to men of good will. Subsequent centuries have shown no slackening in the energy and ingenuity devoted to weakening or nullifying the force of this teaching, and as long as it is expedient to circumvent the doctrine, there will be attempts to explain away its scriptural anchoring. But the doctrine is given as absolute in Matthew, Mark, and Luke, and even Paul goes out of his way to insist that, as a messenger of the teaching and not its author, he is not to blame for its rigor: ‘To the married I give charge, not I but the Lord’ (I Cor 7:10). There can be no serious doubt that the teaching is dominical [i.e., the Lord’s].” (pp. 62-63)

III. Divorce and Remarriage in the Early Church: Some Historical and Cultural Reflections
John M. Rist, Emeritus Professor of Classics and Philosophy at the University of Toronto, and former holder of the Kurt Pritzl, O.P., Chair of Philosophy at the Catholic University of America.

“If we ask how it can be the case that there are those who appeal to the ancient evidence as part of an argument in favor of change, we can only conclude that they (or the sources on which they rely) are guilty of an unfortunate practice all too common elsewhere in academia; the evidence in favor of one view is overwhelmingly superior, but there are a very few cases—and perhaps even these largely of uncertain determination [i.e., difficult to pin down]—that point to the contrary conclusion. It is then claimed that the evidence, if not in favor of change, at least leaves the solution open. Such a procedure can only be condemned as methodologically flawed. (p. 92)

IV. Separation, Divorce, Dissolution of the Bond, and Remarriage: Theological and Practical Approaches of the Orthodox Churches
Archbishop Cyril Vasil’, S.J., Secretary of the Congregation for Oriental Churches

“Christ brought his new, revolutionary message, one that was ‘countercultural’ to the pagan world. His disciples announced his good news, fearlessly presenting near-impossible demands that contradicted the culture of that age. The world today is perhaps similarly marked by the neo-paganism of consumption, comfort, and egoism, full of new cruelties committed by methods ever more modern and ever more dehumanizing. Faith in supernatural principles is now more than ever subject to humiliation.

“All this brings us to consider whether ‘hardness of heart’ [cf. Mt 19:8; Mk 10:5] is a convincing argument to muddle the clearness of the teaching of the gospel on the indissolubility of Christian marriage. But as a response to the many questions and doubts, and to the many temptations to find a ‘short cut’ or to ‘lower the bar’ for the existential leap that one makes in the great ‘contest’ of married life—in all this confusion among so many contrasting and distracting voices, still today resound the words of the Lord: ‘What therefore God has joined together, let not man put asunder’ (Mk 10:9), and the final consideration of St. Paul: “This is a great mystery...” (Eph 5:32).” (p. 128)

V. Unity and Indissolubility of Marriage: From the Middle Ages to the Council of Trent
Walter Cardinal Brandmuller, former President of the Pontifical Committee for Historical Sciences

“Thus the development of doctrine, sacraments, and the hierarchy of divine law does not come about as the casual product of history, but it is guided and made possible by the Spirit of God. For this reason, this development is irreversible and is open only toward a more complete understanding. Tradition in this sense thus has a normative character. In our case, this means that there is no way out of the teaching of the unity, sacramentality, and intrinsic indissolubility of a marriage between two baptized persons—except the way into error.” (p. 144)

VI. Testimony to the Power of Grace: On the Indissolubility of Marriage and the Debate concerning the Civilly Remarried and the Sacraments
Gerhard Ludwig Cardinal Muller, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith

“If remarried divorcees are subjectively convinced in their conscience that a previous marriage was invalid, this must be proven objectively by the competent marriage tribunals. Marriage is not simply about the relationship of two people to God; it is also a reality of the Church, a sacrament, and it is not for the individuals concerned to decide on its validity, but rather for the Church, into which the individuals are incorporated by faith and baptism.” (p. 162)

VII. Sacramental Ontology and the Indissolubility of Marriage
Carlo Cardinal Caffarra, Archbishop of Bologna

“The Church has the mission of leading mankind, of educating people to overcome ‘the divergence between that which one finds on the surface and that which the mystery of love actually is.’ She has the mission of announcing the gospel of marriage. She has the mission of announcing even [i.e., also] the gospel—let me repeat: the gospel—of indissolubility, a true treasure that the Church guards in vessels of clay.” (pp. 179-180)

VIII. The Divorced and Civilly Remarried and the Sacraments of the Eucharist and Penance
Velasio Cardinal De Paolis, C.S., Emeritus President of the Prefecture of Economic Affairs of the Holy See

“Mercy is often presented in opposition to the law, even divine law. This view is unacceptable. God’s commandment is a manifestation of the love with which He shows us the way to take so as not to go astray on our journey through life. But setting God’s mercy in opposition to his own law in an unacceptable contradiction.” (p. 203)

“On the basis of the remarks above, it seems clear that in regard to the divorced and civilly remarried and their admission to the sacraments of penance and the Eucharist, there can be no solution as long as their irregular marital situation remains unchanged. This fact cannot be attributed to the severity and rigor of the law, because we are not dealing with human laws that could be changed or even repealed, but with divine laws that are good for man and mark the path of salvation indicated by God himself.” (p. 209)

IX. The Canonical Nullity of the Marriage Process as the Search for the Truth
Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke, Prefect of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura

“Walter Cardinal Kasper, in his presentation to the Extraordinary Consistory of Cardinals on February 20, 2014, raised the question of the fittingness of the judicial process. Regarding the declaration of nullity of marriage, he observed:

Because marriage as a sacrament has a public character, the decision about the validity of a marriage cannot simply be left to the subjective judgment of the parties concerned. However, one can ask whether the juridical path, which is in fact not iure divino [by divine law], but has developed in the course of history, can be the only path to the resolution of the problem, or whether other, more pastoral and spiritual procedures are conceivable. Alternatively, one might imagine that the bishop could entrust the task to a priest with spiritual and pastoral experience as a penitentiary or episcopal vicar.

“He went on to make a caricature of the marriage nullity process in the second and third instance, asking the rhetorical question: ‘Therefore, can it really be that decisions are made about the weal and woe of people at a second and a third hearing only on the basis of records, that is, on the basis of paper, but without knowledge of the persons and their situation?’” (pp. 211-212)

After a very well-documented presentation, Cardinal Burke concludes in these terms: “The judicial process for the declaration of nullity of marriage is essential to the discovery of the truth regarding the claim that what appeared to be true marriage consent was, in fact, null. Given the complexity of human nature and its reflection in most cases of marriage nullity, the only way in which to know, with moral certitude, the truth about such a claim is the dialectic that the judicial process provides and that has been carefully articulated and developed in the history of the Church’s discipline.” (p. 239)

“In conclusion, the response to the question about the canonical process for the declaration of nullity of marriage, raised in the Preparatory Document of the Third Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, can only be found through full respect for the nature of the claim of nullity of marriage and the nature of the process by which the truth of the claim is decided. It is my hope that the celebration of the coming Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops will lead to a new appreciation of the canonical process for the declaration of marriage, and a new commitment to provide the process for the faithful who request it in its integrity, for the sake of their eternal salvation.” (p. 240)

OK, One More

Because you know you want it.  What can't Bob teach us?

Speak It

25 September 2014

Catholics and the Bourbon Dynasty

How could I not link to this spiffy little piece over at OnePeter5 giving an insight into the Catholic contribution to the development of bourbon? Interesting, with some cool Catholic history thrown in.

Bourbon. Proof God exists and that He loves us.

Just for the record, I love both kinds of drinks-- bourbon and chartreuse.

What? There are other drinks?

24 September 2014

Wednesday Roundup of Doom

'I greet you,' he said, 'and maybe you look for welcome. But truth to tell your welcome is doubtful here, Master Gandalf. You have ever been a herald of woe. Troubles follow you like crows, and ever the oftener the worse. I will not deceive you: when I heard that Shadowfax had come back riderless, I rejoiced at the return of the horse, but still more at the lack of the rider; and when Éomer brought the tidings that you had gone at last to your long home, I did not mourn. But news from afar is seldom sooth. Here you come again! And with you come evils worse than before, as might be expected. Why should I welcome you, Gandalf Stormcrow? Tell me that.'

I am not Gandalf, but I have been accused by some good people lately of posting overly-depressing Church news.  I would like to respond by pointing out that nearly all of the Church news out there is depressing.  So why point it out?  A fair question, but I think that though picking one's spots is necessary to avoid complete despondency, watchmen are certainly needed, because events are coming to a head.

There are some few items of good news out there, too, which need to be acknowledged.

So, with that in mind, some links to recent items of note out there, with perhaps a brief summary of my interest with each:

First, some good news.  In a decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit (which covers Missouri), the Court cited the Hobby Lobby decision to reverse a lower court ruling dismissing a Catholic businessman's claim to a religious exemption to contraceptive coverage under the Obamacare diktat.  Decision here.

On the other hand, some horrible news.  Just as the rumors of Cardinal Burke's demotion from the Apostolic Signatura for being too Catholic await their fulfillment, so too do the rumors that Archbishop Piero Marini will soon be appointed to head the Congregation for Divine Worship.  The prior prefect, Cardinal Canizares Llovera, was sacked for being too Catholic.  That won't be a problem for Archbishop Marini.  Your response to the curial carousel calls for you to hum "Wind of Change", by the '80s hair band Scorpions, in your head.  And.... you're welcome!

I would warn my novus ordo friends that Marini might destroy recent progress in making the n.o. more reverent, but there hasn't been much progress on that anyway.  And, really, would anyone notice?

Speaking of the great Cardinal Burke, he accuses the media of trying to hijack the upcoming Synod on the Family.  He is right, of course, but it is easier to hijack the plane when the pilot invites you on board and hands you a bomb and a megaphone, isn't it?  Still, Cardinal Burke is obviously holier than I am, and I give him credit for trying to steer the ship while the rest of the crew sleeps.

I remember a sermon by a holy priest who said the barque of Peter is like a ship taking on water, with most of the crew drilling holes in the bottom while a few are bailing water.  His Eminence, Cardinal Burke, is a bailer, not a driller.

Depending on whom you read, the Pope is drilling, or bailing, by appointing a commission to "streamline" the annulment process.  I don't know that everyone agrees it is necessary to encourage more annulment claims.  This seems like a recipe for disaster and abuse.  Cardinal Burke warned against this as a type of "false mercy" back in March.  We will see if the same neo- outlets (like the Register) that ran this story in March will take it on anymore.

Giving credit where due, the SSPX had this response to the black mass in Oklahoma City.  Their militancy may not always be applied with prudence (the good kind of prudence) in all situations, and I am not discussing the whole faculties discussion for the moment.  But this is what a Catholic response to evil looks like.  Good on them. Bravo!  Right, Cardinal Dolan?

Next, Bishop Fellay met with the head of the CDF.  Always good news to see communication ongoing.  With this process, it is always best to wait for clarification before getting too excited or downcast.

Moving on to gloomier topics again, it seems that Antonio Socci, the respected Italian journalist who blew the lid off of the attempted cover-up of the Third Secret of Fatima, is making waves again for continuing to call into question the efficacy of Pope Benedict's abdication.  He is publishing a book on the subject (link in Italian, a summary here).  I certainly am not the one to pass on the correctness of this assertion, but I post it here just for the importance of the subject matter.  It seems to me that if this were to be proven true, that you haven't seen a schism like you would see here.  The Great Western Schism involved multiple claimants, yes.  But there was no question of doctrine, which in this case is not guaranteed.  Look for this theory to gain some adherents if the Synod is doctrinally problematic.

Finally, Jeff Culbreath has a fascinating post about the concept of "loyal opposition" to the distressing developments coming out of the Vatican city state.  These are strange times indeed.

So, there you go. Enjoy the rest of your week!


22 September 2014

A True Delicacy

Of Your Charity

If you could please remember my young son John in your prayers. He will be having surgery today. Thank you and God bless you. 

20 September 2014

Prayer for Archbishop Carlson

V. Oremus pro antistite nostro Roberto.

R. Stet et pascat, in fortitudine tua, Domine, in sublimitate nominis tui.

V. Salvum fac servum tuum.

R. Deus meus sperantem in te.


Deus, omnium fidelium pastor et rector, famulum tuum Robertum, quem pastorem Ecclesiae Sancti Ludovici praeese voluisti propitius respice: da ei, quaesumus, verbo et exemplo, quibus praeest, proficere; ut ad vitam, una cum grege sibi credito, perveniat sempiternam. Per Christum Dominum nostrum.

R. Amen

19 September 2014

Perspicacity on Parade

Anthony Esolen is always intelligent and insightful. Enjoy this piece at Crisis Magazine about the problems with the state of the St. Patrick's Day parade.

This is Satire, Right?

Just some humor to give you a break from all the doom and gloom outside.  Check out the picture of the Immaculate Heart of Mary on the wall behind one of these all-too-real players.

Tip to Lew Rockwell.com

We Fly to Thy Patronage

Sub tuum praesidium confugimus, Sancta Dei Genetrix. Nostras deprecationes ne despicias in necessitatibus, sed a periculis cunctis libera nos semper, Virgo gloriosa et benedicta. Amen.

18 September 2014

Yep, Your Holiness

This stuff is getting pretty hard to take.


I really hate to give her the hits, but this fantastical attempt by the Patheos Den Mother of Everything (except tradition) is Awesome to spin the Cardinal Burke news is a must read. WARNING: DO NOT ATTEMPT TO DRINK COFFEE WHILE READING!

There is no enormity that will rouse the neocatholic brute squad.

16 September 2014

Only a Living Thing is Capable of Swimming against the Current

In honor of this sacerdos magnus, Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke, his own words at a Mass in St. Louis in thanksgiving for his elevation to the Sacred College in 2011:

Having received new and weightier responsibilities in my priestly vocation, I certainly take courage from the example of the Blessed Virgin Mary and all the saints, especially Saint Peter the Apostle.  I know that I, as a member of the College of Cardinals, am called to assist our Holy Father, in a more intimate and total way, in his apostolic care of the universal Church.  The distinct vesture of the Cardinal, the scarlet biretta and cassock, leave no doubt regarding the meaning of the position to which I have been elevated.  My priestly love of the Church must now become purer and more selfless, in order that, in the words of the Successor of Saint Peter at the imposition of the cardinalatial biretta, I may show myself to be "intrepid, even to the shedding of [my] blood for the building up of the Christian faith, the peace and harmony of the People of God, and the freedom and extension of the Holy Roman Church."  I am called, even more so now, to be a sign of Our Lord's ceaseless and immeasurable love, "to the end," to the very outpouring of His life for us, on Calvary, His sacrifice made ever present for us in the Holy Eucharist we are celebrating in thanksgiving and petition.

...Throughout more than thirty-five years of priestly life and ministry, Our Lord has taught me that the courageous bearing of the burden of His pastoral charity toward His flock brings deep and abiding joy and peace.  Please pray for me that I will never fail to take up the burden of Christ's love with courage.  Considering my new responsibilities, I need the help of your prayers now more than ever.

In a particular way, I ask your prayers that I may imitate always the example of Saint John Fisher, Bishop of Rochester in England during the reign of Henry VIII... On June 22, 1535, Saint John Fisher was beheaded, intrepid in giving himself totally to Our Lord and His Church, even to the outpouring of his blood.

[...]  The Cardinal today is called, in a special way, to assist the Roman Pontiff in announcing all of the truths of the faith, but, in a particular way, the truth regarding the natural moral law to be observed for the good of all in society.  Please continue to pray for me, that I will not fail Our Lord by failing to assist our Holy Father with all my being. ...

A prince of the Church in the truest sense. 

May he continue to remain rooted at the foot of the Cross, with Mary our Mother.  May we all remain rooted there, "disciples Jesus loves".  The righteous anger and heartbreak faithful Catholics feel at the dishonoring of this most loyal, kind, generous, virtuous, compassionate, brave and humble-- truly humble-- shepherd is just, but must lead to intense prayer and sacrifice.  May His Eminence, and all of us, be granted the "deep and abiding joy and peace" of which he spoke.  

God bless him.  God have mercy on his enemies, inside the Church and outside.  

May we all leave sin behind and turn again to our God.  

May we imitate the model of St. John Fisher and his true spiritual son, Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke.


Sandro Magister is reporting that His Eminence Raymond Cardinal Burke, currently the Prefect of the Supreme Tribunal for the Apostolic Signatura, will soon be sacked and demoted to an historically honorary post as Cardinal Patron of the Knights of Malta. The current holder of the post is 80 years old. Cardinal Burke is 66.

Of course, prudence calls for us to wait and see. And pray.



IF this happens, I say that this is my personal final straw for having any patience for the "everything is normal, Pope Francis isn't changing anything" camp. If you see some Catholic-lite blogger posting that this is "a master stroke by Pope Francis, finally seeking to bring a moribund military order back to ecclesiastical relevance", please don't send me the link.

And though Jimmy Akin is comfortable with annulments by phone call, I smell a rat. Let's see, the Apostolic Signatura's jurisdiction includes review of decrees of nullity. That Synod on the Family is coming in just a few weeks.

It included the authority to overturn the proposed draconian measures attempted against the FFI Sisters. That was against the wishes of the Pope's visitors.

And more. Don't forget that His Eminence celebrates the Traditional Mass.

The Magister article is important enough that I will post it in its entirety below.

Again, if, IF, this happens, don't blow sunshine up my way.

Wake up. Hard to argue with this summation from Rorate:

If this rumor is confirmed (which seems quite possible, considering Magister's excellent sources), it is obvious that this very gentle Cardinal will accept it humbly and silently -- but, make no mistake, it will the palpable symbol of the hatred (yes, unfortunately that is the precise word) for the person of Cardinal Burke and especailly for all that he represents, that is, a life of complete and absolute fidelity to the Authority, Tradition, and Magisterium of the Apostolic See.

God bless Cardinal Burke! Pray for him. Before all is done, we will need him.

VATICAN CITY, September 17, 2014 – The “revolution” of Pope Francis in ecclesiastical governance is not losing its driving thrust. And so, as happens in every self-respecting revolution, the heads continue to roll for churchmen seen as deserving this metaphorical guillotine.

In his first months as bishop of Rome, pope Bergoglio immediately provided for the transfer to lower-ranking positions of three prominent curial figures: Cardinal Mauro Piacenza, Archbishop Guido Pozzo, and Bishop Giuseppe Sciacca, considered for their theological and liturgical sensibilities among the most “Ratzingerian” of the Roman curia.

Another whose fate appears to be sealed is the Spanish archbishop of Opus Dei Celso Morga Iruzubieta, secretary of the congregation for the clergy, destined to leave Rome for an Iberian diocese not of the first rank.

But now an even more eminent decapitation seems to be on the way.

The next victim would in fact be the United States cardinal Raymond Leo Burke, who from being prefect of the supreme tribunal of the apostolic signatura would not be promoted - as some are fantasizing in the blogosphere - to the difficult but prestigious see of Chicago, but rather demoted to the pompous - but ecclesiastically very modest - title of “cardinal patron” of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, replacing the current head, Paolo Sardi, who recently turned 80.

If confirmed, Burke’s exile would be even more drastic than the one inflicted on Cardinal Piacenza, who, transferred from the important congregation for the clergy to the marginal apostolic penitentiary, nevertheless remained in the leadership of a curial dicastery.

With the shakeup on the way, Burke would instead be completely removed from the curia and employed in a purely honorary position without any influence on the governance of the universal Church.

This would be a move that seems to have no precedent.

In the past, in fact, the title of “cardinalis patronus” of the knights of Malta, in existence since 1961, like the previous one of Grand Prior of Rome, has always been assigned to the highest ranking cardinals as an extra position in addition to the main one.

This is what was done with cardinals Mariano Rampolla del Tindaro (appointed Grand Prior in 1896 while remaining secretary of state), Gaetano Bisleti (at the same time prefect of the congregation for Catholic education), Gennaro Granito Pignatelli (cardinal dean and bishop of Albano), Nicola Canali (governor of Vatican City), Paolo Giobbe (leader of the apostolic dataria), Paul-Pierre Philippe (until the age of 75 also prefect of the congregation for the Oriental Churches), Sebastiano Baggio (removed from the congregation for bishops but kept on as governor of Vatican City and camerlengo), Pio Laghi (until the age of 77 also prefect of the congregation for Catholic education).

Two separate cases are those of Cardinal Giacomo Violardo, who succeeded the 89-year-old Giobbe as patron at the age of 71, two months after receiving the scarlet at the end of long service in the curia, and of the outgoing Sardi, appointed pro-patron in 2009 at the age of 75 and made cardinal in 2010 after having been for many years the head of the office that writes pontifical documents.

Above all, Sardi’s retirement would not be a compulsory act, since the age limit of 80 does not apply to positions outside of the curia. And in fact, with the exception of Paulo Giobbe, all of the aforementioned cardinal patrons went on to a better life “durante munere.”

Burke is 66 years old, and therefore still in his ecclesiastical prime. Ordained a priest by Paul VI in 1975, he worked at the apostolic signatura as an ordinary priest with John Paul II, who made him bishop of his native diocese of La Crosse, Wisconsin in 1993. It was again pope Karol Wojtyla who in 2003 promoted him as archbishop of the prestigious see, once cardinalate, of St. Louis, Missouri. Benedict XVI called him back to Rome in 2008, and made him a cardinal in 2010.

With a very devout personality, he is also recognized as having the rare virtue of never having struck any deals to obtain ecclesiastical promotions or benefices.

In the liturgical and theological camp, he is very close to the sensibilities of Joseph Ratzinger. He has celebrated a number of times according to the ancient rite, even donning the “cappa magna,” as do cardinals George Pell and Antonio Cañizares Llovera, without being punished for this by Pope Francis.

A great expert in canon law, and appointed to the apostolic signatura for this reason, he is not afraid to follow it to the most uncomfortable consequences. Like when, to the tune of articles of the Code - number 915 to be precise - he upheld the impossibility of giving communion to those politicians who stubbornly and publicly uphold the right to abortion, bringing the rebukes of two colleagues in the United States valued by Pope Francis, Sean Patrick O’Malley of Boston and Donald Wuerl of Washington.

Free in his judgments, he has been among the very few to make critical remarks on “Evangelii Gaudium,” pointing out that in his view it is orientational but not truly magisterial. And in view of the upcoming synod of bishops, he has repeatedly taken a stand against the ideas of Cardinal Walter Kasper - well known to be in the good graces of Pope Francis - in favor of communion for the divorced and remarried.

The dicastery headed by Burke, eminently technical, recently accepted an appeal from the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate against a provision issued for them by the congregation for religious. A courageous move on the part of Burke, situated within the context of the punitive action undertaken by the Vatican congregation against one of the most substantial realities of Catholic traditionalism, an action that Pope Francis endorsed by approving in specific form the congregation’s decision to prevent the Friars of the Immaculate from celebrating the Mass according to the “Tridentine” rite. It is only with this kind of pontifical approval, in fact, that a decree of the curia can overturn standing law, in this case the motu proprio of Benedict XVI “Summorum Pontificum.”

It is difficult to identify among these episodes the ones that may have have had the greatest influence on the fate of Cardinal Burke.

But it is easy to predict that his definitive downgrading will provoke both a tumultuous reaction within the traditionalist world, where Burke is seen as a hero, and a corresponding wave of jubilation in the opposite camp, where he is instead considered a bogeyman.

On the latter side it can be recalled that the “liberal” Catholic commentator Michael Sean Winters, in the “National Catholic Reporter” of November 26, 2013, had called for the head of Cardinal Burke as a member of the congregation for bishops, because of the nefarious influence, according to him, that he was exercising over episcopal appointments in the United States.

On December 16, in effect, Pope Francis humiliated Burke by crossing him off from among the members of the congregation. To the hosannas of “liberal” Catholicism, not only in the United States.

The pope certainly did not do so out of obedience to the wishes of the “National Catholic Reporter.”

But now he seems right at the point of giving the go-ahead for the second and more grave demotion of one of the most untarnished personalities the Vatican curia knows.

Novena to St. Blaise

Novena in Honor of St. Blaise 
Preparatory Prayer  
ALMIGHTY and eternal God! With lively faith and reverently worshiping Thy Divine Majesty, I prostrate myself before Thee and invoke with filial trust Thy supreme bounty and mercy. Illumine the darkness of my intellect with a ray of Thy Heavenly light and inflame my heart with the fire of Thy Divine love, that I may contemplate the great virtues and merits of the Saint in whose honor I make this novena, and following his example imitate, like him, the life of Thy Divine Son.
Moreover, I beseech Thee to grant graciously, through the merits and intercession of this powerful Helper, the petition which through him I humbly place before Thee, devoutly saying, "Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven." Vouchsafe graciously to hear it, if it redounds to Thy greater glory and to the salvation of my soul. Amen.
Prayer in Honor of St. Blaise
O GOD, deliver us through the intercession of Thy holy Bishop and Martyr Blaise, from all evil of soul and body, especially from all ills of the throat; and grant us the grace to make a good confession in the confident hope of obtaining Thy pardon, and ever to praise with worthy lips Thy most holy name. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Invocation of St. Blaise
ST. BLAISE, gracious benefactor of mankind and faithful servant of God, who for the love of our Savior didst suffer so many tortures with patience and resignation; I invoke thy powerful intercession. Preserve me from all evils of soul and body. Because of thy great merits God endowed thee with the special grace to help those that suffer from ills of the throat; relieve and preserve me from them, so that I may always be able to fulfill my duties, and with the aid of God's grace perform good works. I invoke thy help as special physician of souls, that I may confess my sins sincerely in the holy Sacrament of Penance and obtain their forgiveness. I recommend to thy merciful intercession also those who unfortunately concealed a sin in Confession. Obtain for them the grace to accuse themselves sincerely and contritely of the sin they concealed, of the sacrilegious Confessions and Communions they made, and of all the sins they committed since then, so that they may receive pardon, the grace of God, and the remission of the eternal punishment. Amen.
My Lord and God! I offer up to Thee my petition in union with the bitter passion and death of Jesus Christ, Thy Son, together with the merits of His immaculate and blessed Mother, Mary ever virgin, and of all the Saints, particularly with those of the holy Helper in whose honor I make this novena.
Look down upon me, merciful Lord! Grant me Thy grace and Thy love, and graciously hear my prayer. Amen.

15 September 2014


The more a soul loves God, the more courageous it will be in undertaking any work, no matter how laborious, for love of Him.  Fear of fatigue, of suffering and of danger, is the greatest enemy of fortitude; it paralyzes the soul and makes it recoil before duty.  Courage, on the contrary, is invigorating; it enables us to confront anything in order to be faithful to God.  Courage, therefore, incites us to embrace death itself, if necessary, rather than to be unfaithful to duty.  Martyrdom is the supreme act of Christian fortitude, an act which is not asked of all, yet one which it is well not to ignore as a possibility.  Every Christian is, so to speak, a potential martyr, in the sense that the virtue of fortitude, infused into him at Baptism and Confirmation, makes him capable, if necessity requires it, of sacrificing even his life for the love of God.  And if all Christians are not actually called upon to render to the Lord this supreme testimony of love, all should, nevertheless, live like courageous soldiers, accustoming themselves never to desert any duty, little or great, through fear of sacrifice.


"O Lord God of hosts, You said in Your Gospel, 'I am not come to bring peace but the sword'; provide me then with strength and weapons for the battle.  I burn with desire to fight for Your glory, but I beseech You, strengthen my courage.  Then with holy King David I can exclaim: 'You alone are my shield, O God; it is You who prepare my hands for war.'" (St. Teresa of Avila)

--from Divine Intimacy, by Fr. Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen, O.C.D.

Suffering Through

hard to decide which is the more beautiful landscape, as my daughter struggles to make it through the semester...

14 September 2014

Exaltation of the Holy Cross; Canon Avis and Canon Ueda, Take a Bow

On today's Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, we of the Oratory said goodbye to Canons Avis and Ueda, who move on to their next assignments. They will be missed. On the bright side, the Oratory welcomed one of its two new Vicars, Canon Andrew Todd, who was just ordained by Cardinal Burke in August. The other new Vicar, Canon Antoine Boucheron, will join the Oratory soon, after completing his assignment in St. Brieuc, France.

To quote the wise philosopher-frog Kermit, "Life is a series of meetings and partings. That is the way of it."

Please continue to pray for all of our dear priests in the Institute, and priests everywhere.

Today's feast in many ways contains the encapsulation of our entire faith. The glory of Resurrection comes only through the Cross of Christ. It is a package deal. Many Christians would like to skip over the rather unpleasant fact of the Crucifixion and get right to fruit of that Sacrifice. As Catholics, we know that this cannot be. In God's time, each moment and all moments together of the life, passion, death, and resurrection of Christ are before Him always.

For eternity, Christ triumphant in Heaven will still be the victim Lamb of God, triumphant on the Cross, where is located His throne. The suffering leads to the glory.

This is the key to the mystery of redemptive suffering, and in His goodness Christ allows us to assist in this mystery by the offering up of the sufferings and crosses we endure. Even then, He assists us, and makes it possible for us to share in His redemptive work.

As men limited by time and space, we encounter this reality through the power of God in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. Calvary is actually made present-- not just in symbol, but in reality and power-- each and every Mass. We participate in the graces won by our Lord on the Cross, and we feast upon the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of the King of Kings.

Our priests, through the crucified Christ they serve, are our link to the sacraments that bring Our Lord to us.

12 September 2014

The Prodigal's Last Chance

So good as to lift in its entirety, from the blog Deo Volente ex Animo:

No doubt Father Barron would be miffed to find me using his movie review to make a point about the present malaise in which our world finds itself, but his is the most attractive argument I've come across to date to help me make my point. Anarchy, evil is raising its ugly head these days in almost apocalyptic fashion (I am purposely understating the case) and a world which has downplayed the centrality of the Gospel message to life and culture finds itself exposed, judged, marked by the Cross of Christ or the sign of the beast.

Most people paint the Ukrainian-Russian War of 2014, the menace of the ISIS Caliphate, and the ravages elsewhere in the world left by failed states and frozen conflicts in terms of conflicting world views struggling for a win, as if there were such choices outside the realm of the truth which comes to us from God in Jesus Christ and saves the world darkened by the fall of our first parents. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Apart from coming home to God in Christ, the prodigal has long since exhausted his options. The utopia/distopia dilemma is false; it is no more than false money, a two sided coin that flip it as you will, what comes up is always a flight from God's Face and from Christ's gentle yoke.

The fundamental existential question for every man and woman on the planet is one and has no variations: Why did God make me? God made me to know, love and serve Him in this life, so as to be happy with Him in the next and for all eternity.

In these trying times, Europe, once Christian, once Catholic Europe, is being called to remember, to remember the God-Man and to come home to itself. Neither North nor South America is excluded from helping Europe come home to itself. No corner of the globe should be deprived of the light of the Gospel and of coming to know its Savior.


11 September 2014

The Truth. In Charity.

I am late in noticing this absolutely true and absolutely beautiful essay by Francis Cardinal George, Archbishop of Chicago.

Some of the ideas therein I tried to express in my last post, but His Eminence does it much, much, better. God bless him; items like this keep me going. And many thanks to the friend who sent it to me.

Excerpts (but read the whole thing by all means):

A tale of two churches

Once upon a time there was a church founded on God’s entering into human history in order to give humanity a path to eternal life and happiness with him. The Savior that God sent, his only-begotten Son, did not write a book but founded a community, a church, upon the witness and ministry of twelve apostles. He sent this church the gift of the Holy Spirit, the spirit of love between Father and Son, the Spirit of the truth that God had revealed about himself and humanity by breaking into the history of human sinfulness.

This church, a hierarchical communion, continued through history, living among different peoples and cultures, filled with sinners, but always guided in the essentials of her life and teaching by the Holy Spirit. She called herself “Catholic” because her purpose was to preach a universal faith and a universal morality, encompassing all peoples and cultures. This claim often invited conflict with the ruling classes of many countries. About 1,800 years into her often stormy history, this church found herself as a very small group in a new country in Eastern North America that promised to respect all religions because the State would not be confessional; it would not try to play the role of a religion.


There was always a quasi-religious element in the public creed of the country. It lived off the myth of human progress, which had little place for dependence on divine providence. It tended to exploit the religiosity of the ordinary people by using religious language to co-opt them into the purposes of the ruling class. Forms of anti-Catholicism were part of its social DNA. It had encouraged its citizens to think of themselves as the creators of world history and the managers of nature, so that no source of truth outside of themselves needed to be consulted to check their collective purposes and desires. But it had never explicitly taken upon itself the mantle of a religion and officially told its citizens what they must personally think or what “values” they must personalize in order to deserve to be part of the country. Until recent years.

In recent years, society has brought social and legislative approval to all types of sexual relationships that used to be considered “sinful.” Since the biblical vision of what it means to be human tells us that not every friendship or love can be expressed in sexual relations, the church’s teaching on these issues is now evidence of intolerance for what the civil law upholds and even imposes. What was once a request to live and let live has now become a demand for approval. The “ruling class,” those who shape public opinion in politics, in education, in communications, in entertainment, is using the civil law to impose its own form of morality on everyone. We are told that, even in marriage itself, there is no difference between men and women, although nature and our very bodies clearly evidence that men and women are not interchangeable at will in forming a family. Nevertheless, those who do not conform to the official religion, we are warned, place their citizenship in danger.

When the recent case about religious objection to one provision of the Health Care Act was decided against the State religion, the Huffington Post (June 30, 2014) raised “concerns about the compatibility between being a Catholic and being a good citizen.” This is not the voice of the nativists who first fought against Catholic immigration in the 1830s. Nor is it the voice of those who burned convents and churches in Boston and Philadelphia a decade later. Neither is it the voice of the Know-Nothing Party of the 1840s and 1850s, nor of the Ku Klux Klan, which burned crosses before Catholic churches in the Midwest after the civil war. It is a voice more sophisticated than that of the American Protective Association, whose members promised never to vote for a Catholic for public office. This is, rather, the selfrighteous voice of some members of the American establishment today who regard themselves as “progressive” and “enlightened.”

The inevitable result is a crisis of belief for many Catholics. Throughout history, when Catholics and other believers in revealed religion have been forced to choose between being taught by God or instructed by politicians, professors, editors of major newspapers and entertainers, many have opted to go along with the powers that be. This reduces a great tension in their lives, although it also brings with it the worship of a false god. It takes no moral courage to conform to government and social pressure. It takes a deep faith to “swim against the tide,” as Pope Francis recently encouraged young people to do at last summer’s World Youth Day.

Swimming against the tide means limiting one’s access to positions of prestige and power in society. It means that those who choose to live by the Catholic faith will not be welcomed as political candidates to national office, will not sit on editorial boards of major newspapers, will not be at home on most university faculties, will not have successful careers as actors and entertainers. Nor will their children, who will also be suspect. Since all public institutions, no matter who owns or operates them, will be agents of the government and conform their activities to the demands of the official religion, the practice of medicine and law will become more difficult for faithful Catholics. It already means in some States that those who run businesses must conform their activities to the official religion or be fined, as Christians and Jews are fined for their religion in countries governed by Sharia law.


How does the tale end? We don’t know. The actual situation is, of course, far more complex than a story plot, and there are many actors and characters, even among the ruling class, who do not want their beloved country to transform itself into a fake church. It would be wrong to lose hope, since there are so many good and faithful people.

Catholics do know, with the certainty of faith, that, when Christ returns in glory to judge the living and the dead, the church, in some recognizable shape or form that is both Catholic and Apostolic, will be there to meet him. There is no such divine guarantee for any country, culture or society of this or any age.

If You're Waiting for the Neocatholics to Join You...

...You will be waiting quite awhile.  

Forget all of your past surprise over various members of the hierarchy throwing Catholic teachings in the dustbin-- you know the teachings that in the good old days, LIKE TWO YEARS AGO, seemed pretty clear.  

Forget that in nearly every case, your favorite neocatholic blogger failed to be alarmed.  Sudden radical Papal sanations via the telephone game.  The constant drumbeat to just-shut-up-already-about-the-Gospel-because-it-embarrasses-our-worldly-friends.  Your love of the Mass of the Ages, that just seven years ago was acknowledged to have been in full force and effect from early days until now, well that's unreasonable nostalgia.  Other religions are just as good as yours, or at least good enough on their own.  Lighten up.

The dark hints that the hierarchy will join the Jews of Sixth Chapter of the Gospel of St. John in rejecting the truth about the Eucharist, via amending the teaching about the indissolubility of marriage.  And what do those two teachings have in common?  They both were pronounced by the very mouth of Our Lord.

If Jesus Christ is considered hopelessly "out-of-date", what does it say for any Catholic?  Are you really prepared to go along to get along on the rejection of Christ's own words in order to remain comfortable for a time?

But if you NOTICE any of this weirdness, any of this horrific confusion, any of the many ways our bishops of all ranks are leading us to accommodate the world at the expense of the faith, YOU are a PHARISEE.

You see, you are the problem.  I am the problem.  Catholics are a big problem.  You noticed that homosexuality is listed in the New Testament as a crime crying out to Heaven for vengeance? You bigot.  You noticed Christ said marriage is not severable by man, and that those who "remarry" after a divorce are committing adultery?  You pharisee; mercy trumps all!  And God help you if you notice that encouraging sacrilegious Communion by "remarried" couples is a gravely sinful matter, for both the receiver and the encourager.  

I have been really struggling to find blogging material in the past while for two reasons:  1) I obviously think things are in bad shape in Rome and the world.  You know that too, if you read here.  So, while it is necessary to sound the alarm for those who are still unwary or are honestly seeking the key to reconciling all this, it can get to be so much warning and doom as to be spiritually depressing-- for you and me; and, 2) I don't for the life of me have it figured out myself, except to continue to be Catholic and pray for the graces of Faith, Hope and Charity.  My prayer life is not particularly satisfying at the moment.

In the end, as Christopher Ferrara stated well, I am trying to pick my spots, commenting when I think it can't go unmarked, but otherwise trying to keep my peace of mind.  I don't want to be like the man in the great Bob Dylan's Lonesome Day Blues, who says, 'I keep thinking that something's coming, but it never does.'

So, on to today's post.  One of the ringleaders of the Neocatholic Brute Squad, Elizabeth Scalia, seeks to exonerate Cardinal Dolan for being the source of dismay to faithful Catholics in New York and elsewhere who have had the Church's back for so many years on the subject of the St. Patrick's Day Parade.  She exonerates him for encouraging those attached to the sin of sodomy that they are A-OK just the way they are.  She exonerates him for following the winds out of the Vatican that we don't really care whom or what people interact with in imitation of the marriage act.

In short, my current opinion is that there is NO ENORMITY that will awaken the brute squad to complain.  Books to sell!  Articles to write!  Faithful religious orders to crush!  And don't forget the Quest to Find the Elusive Reverent Novus Ordo  (It's out there!).

Here is a link to her article, if you can stand it.  The siren call of capitulation is seductive-- you can be so smart and holy and world-friendly, all at the same time!  Open the windows wide to the world, let in the fresh air.  Don't be a pharisee!

10 September 2014

Prayer of St. Bernard to the Virgin Mother of God

O MARY, blessed lady who found grace, mother of our life and our salvation, may we have access to thy Son through thee, so that He who was given to us through thee, may receive us through thee. May thy purity excuse the fault of our corruption. May thy humility, which is pleasing to God, implore pardon for our vanity. May thy abundant charity cover the multitude of our sins, and may thy glorious fruitfulness confer upon us an abundance of merits. Our Lady, our Mediatrix, our Advocate, reconcile us to thy Son, commend us to thy Son, and present us to thy Son. O blessed Lady, through the grace thou hast found, through the prerogatives thou hast merited, through the mercy thou didst give birth to, grant us that by thy intercession, He, who deigned to share in our infirmities and misery, will makes us sharers of His glory and blessedness, Jesus Christ, thy Son, our Lord, who is above all blessed God forever. Amen.

09 September 2014

In Gratitude to the Most Holy Trinity

O DEITAS aeterna, o aeterna Trinitas, quae per unionem divinae naturae fecisti tantum valere pretium sanguinis unigeniti Filii tui! Tu, Trinitas aeterna, es quoddam mare profundum, in quo quanto plus quaero, plus invenio; et quanto plus invenio, plus quaero te. Tu quodammodo instabiliter animam satias; quoniam in abysso tua ita satias animam, quod semper remaneat esuriens atque famelica, te, Trinitas aeterna, peroptans desideransque te videre lumen in lumine tuo.

GUSTAVI et vidi cum lumine intellectus, in lumine tuo abyssum tuam, aeterna Trinitas, atque pulchritudinem creaturae tuae: propter quod intuendo meipsam in te, vidi me fore tuam imaginem: donante videlicet mihi te, Pater aeterne, de potentia tua et de sapientia tua, quae sapientia Unigenito tuo est appropriata. Spiritus vero Sanctus, qui procedit a te Patre et Filio tuo, dedit mihi voluntatem, per quam me facit aptam ad amandum.

NAM tu, Trinitas aeterna, factor es, et ego factura: unde cognovi, te illuminante, in recreatione quam me fecisti per sanguinem unigeniti Filii tui, quod amore captus es de pulchritudine facturae tuae.

O abyssus, o Trinitas aeterna, O Deitas, o mare profundum: et quid maius mihi dare poteras quam teipsum? Tu es ignis qui semper ardes et non consumeris; tu es qui consumis calore tuo quemcumque proprium amorem animae. Tu es iterum ignis qui tollis omnem frigiditatem, et illuminas mentes lumine tuo, quo lumine fecisti me cognoscere veritatem tuam.

IN huius luminis speculo cognosco te summum bonum, bonum super omne bonum, bonum felix, bonum incomprehensibile, bonum inaestimabile, pulchritudinem super omnem pulchritudinem, sapientiam super omnem sapientiam: quia tu es ipsa sapientia, tu cibus angelorum qui igne caritatis te dedisti hominibus.

TU vestimentum cooperiens nuditatem meam, pascis nos famelicos tua dulcedine, qua dulcis es absque ulla amaritudine. O Trinitas aeterna!

-- St. Catherine of Siena

08 September 2014

"Why do we have to lose all the time?"

So asks an exasperated Matthew Hennessy at Crisis Magazine.

If he isn't careful, he might get Dolanized, too.

Feast of the Nativity of Mary

From The Liturgical Year:

"Queen of angels, thou art our Queen also; accept us as thy liegemen. On this day, when the first movement of they holy soul was towards God, and the first smile of they lovely eyes was for thy happy parents, may holy Anne allow us to kneel and kiss thy little hand, already filled with the divine bounties of which thou art the predestined dispenser. And now, grow up, sweet little one! Let thy feet be strengthened to crush the serpent, and thy arms to carry the treasure of the world! Angels and men, the whole of nature, God the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, all are awaiting the solemn moment, when Gabriel may fly down from heaven to hail thee full of grace, and bring thee the message of eternal love."

05 September 2014

At Cor Jesu Today

Packed gym for First Friday devotions (Lisa Johnston photo)

"Couple dozen" protestors pose outside (Brian Kelly photo)

04 September 2014


This is not Cardinal Dolan. This is pastoral care. God bless Cardinal Burke!


Rod Dreher coins the phrase. And the Bear pegs another element of the Dolan-enabled farce.

Cardinal Dolan, Apostolic Nuncio to Tehran?

Not Content to Steal Parishes, Bozek Now Wants Hang Out at Your Daughters' School

Thanks to the reader who sent me the following Facebook link.


The pro-sodomy, anti-Catholic crowd wants to "share" their "love" at Cor Jesu Academy. I presume this description is metaphorical only. I further presume that their manner of "sharing" this "love" will be to attack the Catholic school for being Catholic. You know, the usual.

What made me giggle with just a tiny bit of girlish glee was the fact that Mr. Marek Bozek plans to be there. After all, there might be media, and he has his own microphone.

There. You've been put on notice.

*Just a clarification on my previous Cor Jesu post-- I agree with some who have commented that Cor Jesu is indeed the best (in terms of Catholic identity) of the very flawed all-girl Catholic high school bunch. So, I certainly acknowledge it has many good elements; my point in the story was that the state of Catholic education has produced many graduates who have no compunction opposing their schools precisely for pursuing their Catholic mission. The fact that Cor Jesu is comparatively better than most rather confirms my thesis.

Beautiful, True, and Ever So Timely

A little late, but never too late, to mark the feast day of this great Saint, the defender of the faith against everything bearing its rotten fruit right now, I want to refer you to Orwell's Picnic. Hilary White posts these words from Pope St. Pius X, under the heading:

Things popes say: "Jesus instructed them in order to convert them"

[beware of] "this distortion of the Gospel and to the sacred character of Our Lord Jesus Christ, God and man, prevailing within the Sillon and elsewhere. As soon as the social question is being approached, it is the fashion in some quarters to first put aside the divinity of Jesus Christ, and then to mention only His unlimited clemency, His compassion for all human miseries, and His pressing exhortations to the love of our neighbor and to the brotherhood of men.

True, Jesus has loved us with an immense, infinite love, and He came on earth to suffer and die so that, gathered around Him in justice and love, motivated by the same sentiments of mutual charity, all men might live in peace and happiness. But for the realization of this temporal and eternal happiness, He has laid down with supreme authority the condition that we must belong to His Flock,

- that we must accept His doctrine,

- that we must practice virtue, and

- that we must accept the teaching and guidance of Peter and his successors.

Further, whilst Jesus was kind to sinners and to those who went astray, He did not respect their false ideas, however sincere they might have appeared. He loved them all, but

He instructed them in order to convert them and save them.

Whilst He called to Himself in order to comfort them, those who toiled and suffered, it was not to preach to them the jealousy of a chimerical equality.

Whilst He lifted up the lowly, it was not to instill in them the sentiment of a dignity independent from, and rebellious against, the duty of obedience.

Whilst His heart overflowed with gentleness for the souls of good-will, He could also arm Himself with holy indignation against the profaners of the House of God, against the wretched men who scandalized the little ones, against the authorities who crush the people with the weight of heavy burdens without putting out a hand to lift them. He was as strong as he was gentle.

He reproved, threatened, chastised, knowing, and teaching us that fear is the beginning of wisdom, and that it is sometimes proper for a man to cut off an offending limb to save his body.

Finally, He did not announce for future society the reign of an ideal happiness from which suffering would be banished; but, by His lessons and by His example, He traced the path of the happiness which is possible on earth and of the perfect happiness in heaven: the royal way of the Cross.

These are teachings that it would be wrong to apply only to one's personal life in order to win eternal salvation; these are eminently social teachings, and they show in Our Lord Jesus Christ something quite different from an inconsistent and impotent humanitarianism."

03 September 2014

He Has to Pull Out, Right?

That's the observation about Cardinal Dolan that I made today at Steve Skojec's Facebook post on this item, which I link from the New York Times:

Gay Groups to Join St. Patrick’s Parade in New York as a Ban Falls

So, the parade organizers went limp in the face of financial pressure from NBC. Typically disappointing surrender to the sodomeitgeist, right? Well, never fear, people-- Cardinal Dolan, who is next year's Grand Marshall, would never stand for this, right?

“I have no trouble with the decision at all,” Cardinal Dolan said at an evening news conference announcing his appointment as grand marshal. “I think the decision is a wise one.”-- This, friends, is His Eminence, as quoted in the New York Times.

Well, never fear. Pope Francis will certainly come down hard on Cardinal Dolan, right?

When Catholic Schools Don't Teach the Faith, They Find It Hard to Defend the Faith

This story at STLToday covers a fairly predictable local story for these morally putrid times. Two female teachers who are pretending to be married to each other and living together in a gravely disordered relationship have been fired for violating their employment contract, which sensibly contains a conduct clause.

So far, so good for Cor Jesu. But of course there is the inevitable backlash. And while it is fueled by the professional corrupters of Western Civilization, what is unfortunately not surprising is that the backlash is led by alumnae of the school. They wish to use the usual extortionist tactics of the perversion lobby to divert finances away from the school.

If you ever want to see a compelling indictment of the state of Catholic education, read the comments section of any story in the secular press where a Catholic school attempts to stand, even minimally, for the Faith of two thousand years and for the Natural Law that has existed for as long as man has existed.

Check out this nifty bit of faith and reason from one of the alumnae protesting the firing:

Chargers Allies member Coco Fernandez, 22, an alumna of the school who now lives in Chicago, said she wants all who work and attend Cor Jesu to “feel welcomed and accepted as who they are, regardless of sexual orientation.”

Fernandez also said Reichert had been one of her favorite teachers at the school.

“She was a great role model for the girls. She was always kind,” Fernandez said.

“We are being taught to be open and accepting of everybody, and yet teachers are being fired because of their sexual orientation,” Fernandez said when speaking about her education at Cor Jesu.

That 'wisdom' is spoken by the product of a four year education that will currently run you about $50,000.00.

Enjoy the ride down the toilet, folks. Our schools are producing the aiders and abetters of our own persecution.

The Truth Can Hurt..

...yet it remains true. I draw your attention to yet another Rorate Caeli guest piece, bearing in mind the liturgy of the Catholic Church as you read it. If you know anything of Spain, the specific examples will resonate more, but you don't need to know anything about Spain to get the larger, devastating point.


Attachment to traditions, by creating links between men, makes for strong peoples, impregnable to material or moral plundering; and from these deeply rooted peoples come the strongest and most diverse personalities. Peoples without traditions, on the other hand, are destined to the gloomiest solitude, which is the one that, while it preaches individualism, leads to mass-production; and from these peoples, unarmed before the material and moral spoliation, only come forth weak and crude personalities, debilitated by the obsession for independence and freedom, but which invariably end up doing the same collective nonsense. That is why traditionless societies are, paradoxically, the paradise of statistics: because there where there are no traditions (which are the riverbed on top of which our original personality flows), the behavior of individuals, though apparently erratic, is easily predictable, almost automatic. But those who wish to see us converted into a lonely mass, reduced to slavery, do not take our traditions suddenly away from us (out of fear that the memory or nostalgia still lying in our souls may prompt us to rebel), but rather amuse themselves by giving us mock replacements which, on their turn, act as soothers of our pain, and allow them to amuse themselves cruelly at our expense, watching us as we cultivate silly and bizarre passions and habits.


That is the way they want us: despoiled of our traditions, reduced to a human-shaped creature that withers around in his own filth pleased with himself, fed with mock, sordid and ridiculous replacements. Turned into cattle, into a herd, from whom they even charge for the provision of substitutions.


Fed: U.S. Consumers Have Decided to 'Hoard Money'

Update, related local angle:

'Five or six' 'teenaged boys' decided to 'hoard money' in downtown St. Louis

02 September 2014

Natural Law, Unnatural Acts, and the October Synod

“All legal systems, both internal and international, ultimately draw their legitimacy from their rooting in natural law, in the ethical message inscribed in human beings themselves. The natural law is, definitively, the only valid bulwark against the abuse of power and the deceits of ideological manipulation.” (Pope Benedict XVI, Discourse at the Pontifical Lateran University, February 12, 2007).


"In a vast majority of responses and observations, the concept of natural law today turns out to be, in different cultural contexts, highly problematic, if not completely incomprehensible.” (n.21, from the Instrumentum Laboris of the Upcoming Synod on the Family, referring to the questionnaires sent out to various groups in preparation for it).

There you have the issue in a nutshell, as concisely pointed out by Professor Roberto de Mattei in an editorial posted at Rorate Caeli.

The Natural Law, written in every human heart by the Creator, is now seemingly up for popular vote. De Mattei notes well the ludicrousness of the situation:

The solution suggested would be to abandon the concept and term of the natural law, or “to re-read” it in accessible language, with particular attention to the young being part as a direct interlocutor on these themes.

We seem to understand then, that since the Catholic world no longer comprehends the idea of the natural law, it might as well be shelved and substituted by something more suited to the current mentality.

Every Pope, all Popes, and all recent Popes, including the recently canonized, beatified, or whatever is necessary to institutionalize the crypto-modernist drift (to paraphrase the destroyers of the FFI) in the Church Popes, have maintained the Natural Law as the underpinning of all positive law.

Now we have the October Synod.

The Holy Ghost protects the Church from erroneously declaring dogma, and from falling into error in her doctrines. But this charism is a negative one, in that it prevents. It doesn't cover every bad idea with sanctity, or change white into black:

If the concept of the natural law is lost, we will be compelled to accept the theory of gender based on the denial of the very concept of human nature. Man is thought of as a purely material entity, modifiable at will, according to the needs and interests of the moment.

The natural law which comes down from God, is substituted by positive law imposed by pressures from political and mass-media groups. Instead of reflecting on the natural and Divine Law, laws and human behavior are adapting to the opinion of fluctuating and anti-Christian trends.

It is clear that on this issue, the discussion at the next Synod of Bishops will be very hot.

May I suggest prayer and fasting might be in order?