Saturday, July 15, 2006
is unpacked over at the La Floch Report. Mostly the description matches what I've read on the subject, but I think they went rather too soft on Evola. I also don't have the impression that the Perennialists are nearly as anti-feminine as they are presented over there.
In the area of differences between Catholicism and Perennialism, La Floch doesn't compare it, but Catholicism is linear, meaning we start with Adam and Eve at the beginning of planet earth and move forward to the end of the world in a straight line, while Perennialism is cyclical. Manvantaras are repeated cycles of birth, growth, then degeneration, and death of the world culture; that death coming as a result of cataclysm. While Perennialists believe that we are near the end of our present Manvantara, I didn't get the impression they were happy about it. Just the opposite, in fact, though they are resigned to it.
In any case, it's a good description of why Traditional Catholicism and Perennialism are uneasy partners. The fact that Perennialists don't believe that any one religion is better than any other, and that all religions at the esoteric level are equal, is much closer to Freemasonry than it is to Catholicism, and that is why one lodge in the Swiss Grand Orient obedience is named for Rene Guenon.
LEBANON COMES CLOSER TO HOME
I will probably never visit Lebanon. I don't know anyone who lives there, even though I do have relatives currently living in the Mid-East. When I see stories about Hezbollah and bombing, I read them like a novel, something happening to someone else in another universe. I don't understand the politics, and I don't necessarily want to. There are so many other problems closer to home vying for my attention. Lebanon, though, came a little closer to Northeast Ohio this afternoon.
A blog reader sent in a request for prayers. I hope she won't mind if I post it here.
Perhaps you know that I am also a Maronite Catholic. The Maronites are from Lebanon, the only Eastern Catholic church named after a saint--St. Maron. The Maronites never separated from Rome. I forward this story from Minneapolis. The priest, Fr. Sharbel Maroun, is a dear friend. Please pray for all the people who are suffering in Lebanon, especially my Maronite brothers and sisters. I will also try to forward a video. Thanks. Alice.
She also sent in this story from the Star Tribune that details the difficulties that tourists are experiencing. My heart went out to this mother:
Maggie Jacobs, 37, a Minneapolis dental hygienist who was born in Lebanon and moved to Minnesota in 1988, returned two weeks ago from a relative's wedding, leaving daughters Antoinette, 17, and Rosie, 14, to visit her parents in Batroun, in more peaceful northern Lebanon. "So far they're OK," she said.
Minnesota Maronite Catholics are people I can relate to, and so the war in Lebanon now has a human face. I have prayed for Fr. Maroun and for his parish. I hope the rest of you will take a moment to do the same.
A QUOTE SENT IN BY JUSTIN
Abba Serapion said, “When the soldiers of the emperor are standing at
attention, they cannot look to the right or to the left. It is the same
for the man who stands before God and looks towards Him in fear at all
times; he cannot then fear anything from the enemy.”
Friday, July 14, 2006
HOW SERIOUS IS THE LEBANON-ISRAELI CONFLICT ?
Not being politically savvy, I don't actually know what to make of it.
JOHN PAUL II'S MARXIST LEANING
A little-known and unpublished work by Fr. Karol Wojtyla has touched off debate among experts across the globe about whether the future Pope John Paul II, as a young academic, had developed an appreciation of some aspects of Marxism as well as a strong critique of U.S.-style capitalism.
The John Paul II Institute in Lublin, Poland, which is charged with Wojtyla’s pre-papal writings, has plans to publish the work in the near future. However, interpretations of the two-volume Katolicka Etyka Spoleczna (Catholic Social Ethics) have been bitterly contested, a debate touched off in Wojtyla’s homeland of Poland and beyond when the authors of this article first wrote about the unpublished volume in a cover story for the British Catholic weekly The Tablet last January.
The text contradicts views promoted by neoconservative thinkers who depict the pontiff as a lifelong fan of U.S.-style liberal capitalism. It also raises questions of why, when every detail of Wojtyla’s life has been combed over by researchers and biographers, mention of this 511-page work has apparently been avoided.
Seem to be consistent with his attitude toward U.S. "materialism" that he often expressed. It shouldn't come as any great surprise to anyone. I would have thought it was common knowledge that the Pope disapproved of capitalism. His disapproval of the American way of life was most obvious in the lead up to the war with Iraq. The following quote from the article seems rather typical of his thinking, at least to me:
“The church is aware that the bourgeois mentality and capitalism as a whole, with its materialist spirit, acutely contradict the Gospel,” Wojtyla writes.
To me the attitude seemed disingenuous, coming as it did from someone who took full advantage of the perks money could buy to travel the world and hold elaborate ceremonies at each stop, after which he returned home to the palatial Vatican. Made good press, I suppose, but still the comments reflected utilitarian thinking given their source. Sometimes I just wanted to tell him to walk in the shoes of the average American family guy for a while and then we'd talk about it.
It was also thanks to that materialist spirit JPII denigrated that he and Reagan were able to change the nature of Russian politics. One would have thought that communism presented a dire enough picture of the state of the working class under that system for him to reject it in favor of a democratic system that, while admittedly flawed, at least offered everyone some hope for a better life.
Then there were the occasions at my former liberal parish where more than once I left church reeling from what had sounded like an endorsement of communism from the pulpit during the homily.
In all of his objections to the capitalist system, I don't recall JPII ever pointing to another nation that he thought did the job better than America. It was more of a theoretical economic system that he endorsed. That conclusion would seem to be drawn from this controversial work as well:
Wojtyla traces communism itself back to Christian tradition, even subtitling one section “The Objective Superiority of the Communist Ideal.” But he makes clear he is using the term generically to mean common ownership. The church believes “the private ownership principle” can be upheld while “enfranchising the proletariat.”
“In the contemporary communist movement, the church sees and acknowledges an expression of largely ethical goals,” the future pope concedes.
“In line with patristic traditions and the centuries-old practice of monastic life, the church itself acknowledges the ideal of communism. But it believes, given the current state of human nature, that the general implementation of this ideal -- while protecting the human person’s complete freedom -- faces insurmountable difficulties.”
Then there is the spin:
In this context, Wojtyla’s controversial style could be said to reflect the language of the epoch. Although the text’s ideas are couched in Marxist language, the meaning behind them accords with Christian teaching, and conveys in unconventional terms what popes from Leo XIII onward had said about the abuses of liberalism and unchecked competition.
Interesting phrase, "Wojtyla's controversial style." If this early document shares in the same "controversial style" of later years, I'd be more inclined to call it "incomprehensible style," myself. Makes for good spin, though.
Those liberals that concerned Leo XIII history has shown turned out to be the Theosophists who gave us Blavatsky, Besant, and Bailey. Lee Penn's book quickly puts them in context. Marxism in a book may look promising. Marxism on the ground is another animal.
Timing is everything, I guess:
Can a work of such importance as Catholic Social Ethics simply have slipped through the net?
That question is being asked in Poland. In a front-page spread, the Zycie Warszawy daily accused the Lublin institute of attempting to “censor the pope” by withholding the text from John Paul II’s Polish beatification tribunal, which ended April 1 after just five months’ work.
What's to be done with this embarrassing text?
Meanwhile, Szostek has warned that an “authentic version” of the text must be prepared, with “commentaries to help with its understanding.”
“Editing this script isn’t a simple matter,” Szostek cautioned in an April statement. “It requires scientific reliability.”
God forbid that we should be permitted to take JPII at his word!
Blogger credit to New Oxford Review for the link.
TOM CRUISE SEEMS TO HAVE AN AFFINITY FOR CATHOLIC GIRLS
However, Katie's devoutly Catholic parents, Martin and Kathleen, will not attend the nuptials because they do not approve of Tom's devotion to the bizarre sci-fi cult.
EMAIL FROM DR. BOND
The Times Leader is on a roll.
In today's Times Leader, there is an article entitled "Abuse witnesses muzzled?" (http://www.timesleader.com/mld/timesleader/15026703.htm) that gives readers a whiff of the sordid cesspool of corruption created by former Bishop James Timlin of the Diocese of Scranton. That cesspool is replete with predator priests, slimy attorneys, and suborned witnesses. After reading the article, be sure to read the email from one diocesan priest to another (http://www.timesleader.com/multimedia/timesleader/KRT_packages/archive/email.pdf), for it reveals very clearly why so few priests are willing to expose their corrupt bishops.
As a result of this email, questions are being raised once again as to why Timlin would not discipline a known homosexual predator priest, Fr. Albert Liberatore. According to three witnesses and the diocesan priest who served under Liberatore, Timlin was unwilling to discipline Liberatore because Liberatore had Timlin in his "hip pocket." In other words, Liberatore has something on Timlin.
These same questions were raised when Timlin tried to protect the homosexual predator priests of the Society of St. John, especially Carlos Urrutigoity and Eric Ensey. The answer that was proposed to me by four separate sources was that Timlin was being blackmailed because he was a homosexual. I therefore sent an open letter to Timlin in which I put to him this question: "Are you, or have you ever been, a practicing homosexual?" (See http://www.saintjustinmartyr.org/news/BishopTimlinsViolationOfTheBishopsCharter.htm.) I asked Timlin for a public response, but he never made one. I think this same question needs to be put to Timlin again and again until the reason for his protection of these perverts is finally revealed.
Whatever Timlin's motive, the Times Leader article makes manifest what many of us have known for a long time: the Diocese of Scranton is rotten to the core, and Timlin is the source of the rot. But until the diocesan files on abusive priests are made public (as they were in Boston), we will never know the depth of the corruption in Scranton.
Dr. Jeffrey M. Bond
Thursday, July 13, 2006
NOTED AT CLEVELAND SCENE
God and glitter
Critics of Catholicism have long dogged the church for its failure to provide quality transsexual entertainment. Now St. Helena's on West 65th hopes to change all that with its "Dressed in All White" celebration, slated for July 14. Fliers feature a woman sporting high heels and a thong.
"It's actually a drag event -- some of the best drag from throughout the whole state of Ohio," says Divinity, one of the scheduled performers.
But while the Catholic Church's love of male entertainment is well chronicled, the Diocese of Cleveland has no jurisdiction here: St. Helena's is a member of the Romanian Catholic Church. Its flock ignores the same pope that Roman Catholics do, but its regional headquarters are in Canton.
"It must be some mistake," says St. Helena's pastor, Andre Matthews. "I don't know anything about it."
Cleveland diocese spokesman Bob Tayek says decisions on parish entertainment -- like bingo or shemale dancers -- are made between each church and the bishop. He hints, however, that transsexual revues are not in the plans of new Cleveland bishop Richard Lennon.
"It would be safe to say that it'd be highly unlikely," Tayek says.
The Diocesan website listing of parishes does not include a St. Helena's.
The Unofficial Directory of Eastern Catholic Churches in Ohio lists:
Holy Ghost (Byzantine - Ruthenian/Parma)
2420 West 14th Street, Cleveland, OH, 44113, Phone: (216) 861-2177
St. Helena's Church (Byzantine - Romanian/Canton)
1365 West 65th St., Cleveland, OH 44102, Phone: (216) 651-0965
Wouldn't that put the church in the Catholic Eparchy of Parma? No St. Helena's listed there.
Can't find a Romanian Orthodox Church named St. Helena's in Cleveland, either.
I found the Eparchy of St. George in Canton which lists St. Helena's in Cleveland.
THE EMERGING CHURCH MOVEMENT
This article claims there may be as many as 20 million involved in this new movement. Certainly looks to be the reaction to the Megachurch. As Roman Catholicism moves in this direction through cluster parishes, will this be the next trend? How does a sacramental church accommodate it? Actually it looks more like the Masonic Lodge than a church because its central focus seems to be humanitarian efforts.
Blogger credit to NOR for the link.
SAINTS SERGIUS AND BACCHUS
Would anyone care to comment on the claims made in this website?
Wednesday, July 12, 2006
ONE MORE COMMENT ON THE HOLY SPIRIT CATHOLIC CHURCH OF ANTIOCH
before leaving it. In a webpage that details more of the beliefs of the church I found the following:
How many people are in the pews of Old and Independent Catholic churches? One recent estimate by a noted historian puts the numbers at about 2.5 million people, which together comprise an equal number to that of the Episcopal Church USA.
It would be more believable if the historian were named, of course.
On the web all websites, and thus all organizations, look relatively equal. Size is difficult to impossible to judge from a website. Cyberspace is the great leveler.
Tuesday, July 11, 2006
IS IT ROMAN CATHOLIC OR IS IT GNOSTIC CATHOLIC ?
Rosaries of Divine Union
The website is the work of Fr. Michael Adams.
You will find it linked on this Catholic website which looks to be a traditional Roman Catholic website.
It is linked at this website of valuable religious links. It too appears to be traditional Roman Catholicism.
But then I also find it linked on this website of the Holy Spirit Catholic Church of Antioch--an Independent Catholic Church that traces its succession through Joseph Rene Vilatte, as can be noted on the above-linked webpage, and the Liberal Catholic Church, as can be seen here. Notice the URL for this church: "holyspirit.livingrosaries.org". Both the Rosaries of Divine Union and the Holy Spirit Catholic Church of Antioch are located in Fairfield, Iowa. Both websites include the name of Fr. Michael Adams.
You can read the prayers for one version of the Gnostic rosary here.
Lon Milo DuQuette and his wife Constance are offering a workshop for the Gnostic rosary. DuQuette is the Grand Master of the (or an) Ordo Templi Orientis (OTO) Lodge.
It is in an OTO Lodge where you will find the black mass. This is NOT the pre-Vatican II Roman Catholic Church! Has it become the post-Vatican II Roman Catholic Church?
Meg's Wicca Page provides several varieties of rosaries including the Rosaries of Divine Union.
Roman Catholics are easily fooled. Or is it that this doesn't matter anymore?
It is often said that abuse does not preclude use. On the web, therefore, abuse has become the ticket to legitimacy.
Just as Soloviev, who was often cited by John Paul II, encountered the Divine Sophia when studying Kabbalah, today's Catholics are as likely as not to take up a rosary dedicated to Sophia and think they are praying to the Virgin Mary.
We have had 40 years of doctrinal chaos. Now comes this web-based state of even greater chaos. How long will it be before the web-based chaos becomes the normal state of affairs in the Catholic real world via ecumenical and interreligious pursuits?
When Christ returns will there be any faith on the earth?
I am the Lord thy God. Thou shalt not have strange gods before me.
What is a "strange god"?
Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us!
WHITE CRANE JOURNAL #55
EMAIL FROM DR. BOND
July 10, 2006
The Times Leader has published an article that exposes once again former Bishop James Timlin's efforts to protect predator priests in the Diocese of Scranton. Entitled "The sins of our fathers," this article is appropriately subtitled "Sex abuse: What the diocese knew and didn't tell you." The article, which cites the Society of St. John scandal as an example of how the Diocese of Scranton failed its people, can be found at http://www.timesleader.com/mld/timesleader/14998976.htm.
Appearing on the front page of today's Times Leader (see http://www.timesleader.com/mld/timesleader/), the article is accompanied by a large picture of Timlin and an additional article entitled "The shame of the diocese." This latter article documents the diocesan cover-up in the infamous case of Fr. Robert Caparelli (see http://www.timesleader.com/mld/timesleader/14998996.htm), the first priest in the United States diagnosed as being HIV-positive who pleaded guilty to sexually abusing altar boys. Caparelli died of AIDS in the Lackawanna Correctional Facility in December 1994. My letters exposing Timlin's role in the Caparelli case, and the parallels with Timlin's handling of the SSJ scandal, can be found at http://www.saintjustinmartyr.org/news/BishopTimlinOpenLetter4.html and http://www.saintjustinmartyr.org/news/BishopTimlinLegacyCaparelliToSSJ.html.
While the Times Leader's account of Timlin's protection of predator priests will not shock anyone who has followed the Society of St. John scandal, it is amazing to see that the Diocese of Scranton is still operating from the same play book that was used by Timlin, who declined to be interviewed for the article. The current diocesan spokesman, William Genello, followed Timlin's lead by saying "the diocese would not answer any of the Times Leader's questions about its handling of abuse allegations." Having refused to address the issue, Genello then showed his credentials as diocesan spokesman by suggesting that the Times Leader's approach to the story might reflect "personal or institutional animosity toward the Catholic Church." Genello has apparently learned well from his superiors to attack the motives of anyone who tells the truth about the Diocese of Scranton's failure to protect young souls from abusive priests.
Genello's response on behalf of the Diocese of Scranton demonstrates that the pattern of stonewalling, lying, covering up, and attacking victims and their supporters continues to this day. Hence, predator priests will continue to operate in the Diocese of Scranton because many of their victims have been silenced by fear, guilt, hardball diocesan tactics, and a statute of limitations law that does not recognize the time required for victims to come to terms with the sexual abuse they have suffered.
Dr. Jeffrey M. Bond
WORLD WAR III HAS BEGUN
says Michael Goodwin in an article at the New York Daily News linked by Rod Dreher in Crunchy Con. He makes a good case for his claim, citing the worldwide terrorist activities.
What then are we to make of the claim that the Fatima consecration has been accomplished? The evidence for the accomplishment of that request is a period of peace promised at Fatima. John Paul II claimed to have done it. Where is the peace? Did I blink and miss it somehow?
Monday, July 10, 2006
Mark Waterinckx sent in the text of Bishop Ratko Peric's homily from Confirmation on June 15, the third part of which (in red) directly addresses the apparitions in Medjugorje.
SOLEMNITY OF THE MOST HOLY BODY AND BLOOD OF CHRIST
MEDJUGORJE, 15 - VI - 2006
Dear brothers and sisters,
Dear candidates for Confirmation, I am happy to be with you and your families here today for the conferring of the sacrament of Confirmation. Through the required instruction and the sacrament of Reconciliation you have prepared yourselves to faithfully receive the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit. The gifts of wisdom, understanding, knowledge and counsel, are concerned with our minds, with the enlightening of our use of reason; while the gifts of fortitude, piety and fear of the Lord, regard our hearts and the strengthening of our free will. These are not fleeting gifts that you will joyfully receive today as candidates for Confirmation and which will be gone tomorrow. This is the seal of the gift of the Holy Spirit. Once sealed you always remain sealed with the Holy Spirit! However, each of these gifts requires your efforts in conformity with your growth in knowledge and witnessing through a life of faith.
I. - Gifts of the Spirit. Hence, be not afraid young friends, to be wise in God’s eyes, even if it means appearing foolish in the eyes of people. God’s “foolishness” is wiser and more prudent than the wisest of people.
Do not fear to be strong in God before people, even though the world may consider you cowards and backward. Christ the Lord, God’s Truth, teaches us: "Everyone who acknowledges me before others, I also will acknowledge before my Father in heaven (Mt 10:32).
Do not be ashamed to be fearful of the Lord and pious, full of awe towards God and his holiness, even though this passing world may ridicule and mock you. The world has no fear of, nor sense of shame in transgressing God’s commandments. We on the other hand, are believers and worshipers of God, who adore him in spirit and truth.
The world counsels on how you can most easily lose yourself in fleeting passions, but the Holy Spirit counsels us on how we can most easily reach eternal life. Whoever then takes truthful counsel, is lead by the Spirit on the right path.
The world tempts you and invites you to behave according to its perverted fantasies and passions, yet the Holy Spirit lets you learn and discern by acquiring unending knowledge that leads to the Father’s house. Today, do not allow yourself to just receive the seal on your forehead and then continue living as if you do not possess the Holy Spirit within you.
II. - Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ. The Church celebrates today the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ. We Catholics believe that the historical event of Jesus’ Last Supper, described in each of the four Gospels, is one of the greatest mysteries of our holy faith. During that evening, the Lord Jesus, while he ate with his disciples, took bread, blessed it, broke the bread and gave it to them saying: “Take; this is my body”. He then took the cup, gave thanks and gave it to them. And all drank from it. “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many” (Mk 14:22-23).
Eucharistic sacrifice. The mystery of the Lord’s Supper is first of all a sign of Jesus’ sacrifice through his death on the cross and resurrection to new life, which he offers us as a divine gift. Why is this at the very core of Christian faith? Because this is what God desired and accomplished! If the all-wise God decided on this path of salvation, then his entire divine intervention is nothing else than wisdom and goodness. We become wise and prudent when we accept this sacrifice as an _expression of God’s grace and love. The sacrifice can only be understood and accepted in the context of love. Sacrifice is the most convincing demonstration and evidence of love. God is Love. Therefore, the Eucharistic sacrifice is an _expression of God’s love towards us. In a specific historical moment on Calvary, Jesus offered the sacrifice of himself to his Father, as a testimony of his complete Love of God and of humanity. We through our own efforts of piety of heart and mind, participate in the liturgical celebrations and daily offerings of ourselves to God.
Eucharistic banquet. This mystery of Jesus’ love is not only his divine sacrifice for us weak people, but it is also our spiritual food for our journey towards eternal life. There is no health, nor life without bread. Mankind does not know all the ingredients of bread and wine, yet he still eats and drinks of them with joy and moderation. Are we even aware of the process of how wheat and grapevines grow? How does a seed sprout or a grape mature? How is the seed transformed into bread, or the grapes into wine? Do we know how bread and wine are then transformed in our living organisms? Despite our lack of knowledge, this does not lessen the strength of bread nor wine to sustain our lives in good health through their nourishment.
Something similar occurs with our spiritual health. We cannot understand what the Holy Eucharist is, but we accept it with faith and partake of it with the greatest respect of heart for our eternal salvation. Jesus said to us: “Whoever eats of this bread will live forever” (Jn 6:51). While our earthly bread and wine serve for this life, so too Jesus’ Body and Blood serve for spiritual and eternal life. None of us are worthy of this for we are all sinners: in our thoughts, words and actions, as well as through our omissions in doing the good that we should do. Whoever unworthily eats and drinks of this Sacrament, that is, while in sin, in disorder, in obstinacy, that person is guilty of sinning against the Body and Blood. However, those who confess and repent for their sins, God grants them forgiveness and feeds them with the Body and Blood of Christ. Let us give thanks to God who first of all sets us free from our sins in the sacrament of Confession and who nourishes us with his Eucharistic Body. The Mass is therefore the center of our personal and communal lives. This is the will of our heavenly Father, established by the Son of God, which happens through the power of the Holy Spirit. We believe in the words of Christ, for his words “are spirit and life” (Jn 6:63).
In memory of him. The Lord Jesus left us a great divine truth and mystery: “This is my Body”. “This is my Blood”. These words were spoken by Christ himself. From the very beginning, the Church has always literally understood this holy text and message from Jesus’ Last Supper. Not even a single letter has ever been changed, nor have they been understood according to other symbolic meanings in order to make them more acceptable to people. Jesus said these words once and forever! He also commanded that this be done in memory of him! In memory of God’s great works of salvation. We acknowledge and believe in what has been communicated to us! We celebrate the liturgy in the same fashion as we have received it. Let us give thanks to God for the immeasurable gift of Jesus’ Most Holy Body and Blood. This act and mystery contain the past: “Christ has died”; the present of Christ’s resurrection: “Christ has risen”; and the future: “Christ will come again”, when he shall come and prepare a place for us so that we may be where he is (Jn 14:3).
III. – “Apparitions”. First of all, the fact that a person makes a humble Confession and receives Holy Communion in this parish church and that this person feels spiritually well due to God’s forgiveness, each and every believer will recognize and give due praise to God for this, who is the source of all graces. At the same time, this person will take care not to proceed from this state of grace towards an illogical and inconsistent conclusion: “I made a Confession. I feel good and now I am converted. Therefore the Madonna is appearing in Medjugorje!” This type of believer and penitent is nonetheless obliged to go to confession, receive the other sacraments, observe the Commandments, whether any private apparitions are recognized or not.
Secondly, I would be an irresponsible minister of the Mystery of the Body and Blood of Christ, if today I were not to publicly advise, from this place and on this occasion as well, to all those interested throughout the world, that in this local Church of Mostar-Duvno, there exists something similar to a schism. A number of priests that have been expelled from the Franciscan OFM Order by the Generalate of the Order, due to their disobedience to the Holy Father, for years now have been forcefully keeping a few parish churches and rectories along with church inventory. They have not only been illegally active in these parishes, but they have also administered the sacraments profanely, while others invalidly, such as Confession and Confirmation, or they have assisted at invalid marriages. This type of anti-ecclesial behaviour is shocking to all of us. At the same time, this scandal of sacrilegiously administering the sacraments, especially of the Most Holy Body of Christ, must shock all the faithful as well who invalidly confess their sins to these priests and participate in sacrilegious liturgies. We pray to the Lord that this scandal and schism be uprooted as soon as possible from our midst.
Thirdly, I am truly grateful to the Holy Father the Pope, to John Paul II of blessed memory and to the reigning Benedict XVI, who have always respected the judgements of the bishops of Mostar-Duvno, of the previous as well as the current bishop, regarding the so-called “apparitions” and “messages” of Medjugorje, all the while recognizing the Holy Father’s right to give a final decision on these events. The judgements of the bishops, after all the canonical investigations made thus far, can be summarized in these following points:
1 - Medjugorje is a catholic parish in which liturgical and pastoral activities are carried out, just as in all the other parishes of this diocese of Mostar-Duvno. No-one except the official Church authorities is then authorized to attribute the formal title of “shrine” to this place.
2 - On the basis of Church investigations of the events of Medjugorje, it cannot be determined that these events involve supernatural apparitions or revelations. This means that till now the Church has not accepted, neither as supernatural nor as Marian, any of the apparitions.
3 - Priests who canonically administer this parish of Medjugorje or those who come as visitors, are not authorised to express their private views contrary to the official position of the Church on the so-called “apparitions” and “messages”, during celebrations of the sacraments, neither during other common acts of piety, nor in the Catholic media.
4 - The Catholic faithful are not only free from any obligation to believe in the authenticity of the “apparitions” but they must also know that church pilgrimages are not allowed, whether official or private, individual or group, or from other parishes, if they presuppose the authenticity of the “apparitions” or if by undertaking them attempt to certify these “apparitions”.
5 - As the local Bishop, I maintain that regarding the events of Medjugorje, on the basis of the investigations and experience gained thus far, throughout these last 25 years, the Church has not confirmed a single “apparition” as authentically being the Madonna. The fact that during these 25 years there has been talk of tens of thousands of “apparitions” does not contribute any authenticity to these events, which according to the words of our current Pope, who I encountered during an audience on 24 February this year, commented that at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith they always questioned how all these “apparitions” could be considered authentic for the Catholic faithful. They particularly do not seem to be authentic when it is known beforehand that these so-called “apparitions” will occur:
To one of the “seers” on the 18th of March every year, but along with this she will also receive an “apparition” on the 2nd of each month, with “messages” which you can expect, according to the established procedures;
The second will receive an apparition on every day of the year, and if this were not enough, an added special “apparition” on the 25th of each month along with a type of press release, which once again you can foresee and expect;
The third will receive an “apparition” on the 25th of December, on Christmas day, along with a message similar to the ones already mentioned;
The fourth will receive an “apparition” on the 8th of September every year along with a specific message;
The remaining two will receive the same, every day along with “messages” that can be anticipated since they are variations on the same theme. This fact and the flood of so-called apparitions, messages, secrets and signs, do not strengthen the faith, but rather further convince us that in all of this there is nothing neither authentic nor established as truthful.
Therefore I responsibly call upon those who claim themselves to be “seers”, as well as those persons behind the “messages”, to demonstrate ecclesiastical obedience and to cease with these public manifestations and messages in this parish. In this fashion they shall show their necessary adherence to the Church, by neither placing private “apparitions” nor private sayings before the official position of the Church. Our faith is a serious and responsible matter. The Church is also a serious and responsible institution!
Through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the greatest possessor of the gifts of the Holy Spirit, who through the same Holy Spirit conceived in her body and gave birth to the Second person of the Trinity, Jesus Christ, who gives us his Most Holy Body and Blood for eternal life, may He - who is the Way, the Truth and the Life – help us so that the truth of the Blessed Virgin, his Mother and Mother of the Church, Seat of Wisdom and Mirror of Justice, may shine forth in brightness in this parish and diocese, without even a hint of incredibility, yet all in accord with the constant teachings and practice of the Church. Amen.
Ratko Peric, bishop
"BUILDING WITH LIVING STONES" ON THE FOUNDATION OF THE VILATTE SUCCESSION
Last week we were treated to the spectacle of Benedictine nuns who withdrew from Christ's Church in order to avoid offending their friends.
This week I have found some Franciscans who have no membership in Christ's Church to withdraw from. Take a look at the Apostolic Society of Franciscan Communities.
According to their home page they are
The Apostolic Society of Franciscan Communities is "inclusive and affirming" while they remain "canonically independent Catholic Frnciscan communities dedicatd to the charismatic renewal of the Church in a meaningful, post-modern way."
They have the audacity to claim to be "rebuilding the Church that is crumbling," as though that "crumbling" has nothing to do with them. They think they can rebuild the Church without the "bricks of dogma and literalism" and instead use "fresh new mortar and living stones."
To do this they are calling "men and women, both single and partnered, celibate and non-celibate"--the "marginalised and abused by the Institutional Church...without regard to gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, economic status, physical disability or age."
In order to do this rebuilding they propose to "rediscover the richness of a faith often buried beneath layers of discrimination, dogma, politics and misinterpretation." Combine that claim with the claim to be "charismatic" and you get Catholic Pentecostalism. Nevertheless, they claim to be "authentically Catholic" and "canonically independent of the bishop of Rome" while having sacraments that are "recognised under Roman Catholic canon law and by the Orthodox and Old Catholic Churches as valid".
The Apostolic Society of Franciscan Communities of The Servant Franciscans of the Immaculata are “Servants of Our Mother's Immaculate Heart” an organization founded in Florida in 1983 by four Secular Franciscans. They began their community as caregivers for gay men suffering from AIDS. Today they also minister to the poor, cancer sufferers, the hungry and the marginalized. Once again they use the phrases "living stones" and "charismatic" on this page in their website.
They are part of the "Emergent Catholic Movement" which they call "A future Church, with an ancient Faith", and compare their "evolutionary emergence" with a critical medical situation that requires "emergent care". (Maybe they can't afford a dictionary.) Here again on this page in the website they refer to themselves as "a Church of Living Stones...An Emergent Catholic Church" that is "based on the emergent mystical expression of Christianity" and "Spirit directed." A nice way of saying they are homosexuals who intend to continue to practice their homosexuality?
Well, yes, apparently.
On December 10th, the faithful and consecrated religious from several canonically independent North American Catholic faith communities took a bold step forward to advance the unity and progress of the Emerging Church. Inspired by the Holy Spirit and called forth by the people of their local faith communities, the Very Reverend Roger LaRade and the Right Reverend Mother Jean Michelina Cortopassi, FCJM were consecrated as bishops within the Emergent Catholic Church International – an inclusive and affirming, canonically independent Catholic Communion, based in Washington, D.C.
It’s founder, theologian and respected GLBT/AIDS activist and writer, (Archbishop) Servant-Father Francis-Maria Salvato, SFI, explains the reason the ECCI was founded:
“Inspired by the groundbreaking efforts of people like Brian McLaren and John Dominic Crossan to reveal what it means to follow Jesus in a postmodern context, as well as by small communities of GenX’ers who were emerging as leaders in this ‘rebirth’ of the Church, it became clear to me that we were being called to an entirely different kind of conversion this time... Called to become a ‘future church with an ancient faith’... in the story of Jesus, we have glimpsed God's future and know that ‘this could change everything.’
They are composed of "Catholic, Episcopalian and Lutheran jurisdictions [who] do not give up their autonomy by joining the ECCI." Their Bishop-Abbess was a Roman Catholic for 35 years.
Pictures of the Very Reverend Roger LaRade and the Right Reverend Mother Jean Michelina Cortopassi, FCJM can be seen in that webpage. Roger LaRade is also a bishop in the Eucharistic Catholic Church/Eglise Catholique Eucharistique in Canada. That denomination has another familiar name listed in the Apostolic Succession--Archbishop Joseph Rene Vilatte, whom I've written about several times, and who is featured on the Episcopal Diocese of Fond du Lac's website since his major base of operation was what is now the Fond du Lac Diocese. If you scroll all the way down to the bottom of the website you can also see that a man I wrote about last week is listed as a Primate: Most Rev. George Augustine Hyde, the formerly Catholic founder of the first gay church.
For a look at the tangled web of confusion that is the Vilatte Succession, take a look at this webpage in the P. R. Koenig website. While you're there, take a moment to look at that flashing image of a dove--the Holy Spirit image, I presume, since Gnosis is said to come from the Holy Spirit. If you want more on Vilatte and Gnosis and sex magick, check out this website. If you still need more convincing of exactly what we are looking at, take a look at this OTO website [and don't blame me if the image there offends].
While you are thinking about this, give some thought to what ecumenism could mean in this context, especially when, as it has been claimed, our priests are 70% homosexual.
Our Lady of Fatima, ever virgin, pray for us!
Sunday, July 09, 2006
RELIGION OF THE ANTI-CHRIST
As we watch the Church changing repeatedly before our eyes, the question that hangs in the balance for a faithful Catholic is whether the changes are consistent with the traditional faith. When we can't be sure, thoughts turn to the religion of the Antichrist, and whether there is any possibility that the changes we are seeing might serve this opposition.
Over at the Orthodox Christian Information Center there is an article titled "Count the Number of the Beast: 666" by Inok Vsevolod (Filipiev), from Holy Trinity Monastery, that looks at some of the novelties in Western society, to determine if they fit the pattern we are given in Scripture. The article, as the title reveals, deals with the mark of the Beast, explaining why all of the talk about chips and national identity cards may in fact not be something we should worry about, but that is not to dismiss entirely contemporary trends.
The religion of Antichrist will require a form of submission in exchange for the mark. We will be required to deny Christ to get it.
It is this denial of true Christianity that constitutes the principal reason for setting the seal of Antichrist. Clearly, then, the acceptance of this seal is not connected to any trademarks or commercial marks on documents, money or even on the flesh (for example, prisoners in labor camps wear numbers on their clothing, and slaves used to be branded). This is not the seal of Antichrist. The acceptance of the mark must be joined with a conscious denial of Christ and the acceptance of the law of Antichrist.
It is interesting to trace how, over thousands of years, Satan has been preparing mankind to accept his religion. Many pagan cults confess some kind of divine triad. The ancient Romans had Jupiter, Juno and Minerva; the Hindus have Brahma, Siva and Visnu; in the Egyptian religion one finds the trinitarian group of Osiris, Isis, and Horus. The concept of a trinity also exists in Buddhism and among the ancient Slavs and Celts. In the Graeco-Roman religious cults this idea was reflected in the veneration of the three-bodied goddess Hecate, the three-headed Scylla, the triune divinities of the Cabiri. At the gate of Hades stood guard the fiendish, three-headed dog, Cerberus. Numerous divine triads have been revered by pagan tribes of the Americas and Africa. The cult of voodoo, which is related to modern satanism and still practiced today, believes in some anti-trinity.
These confessions may be said to contain fragments of true revelation. If satan did not exist, one could say that these pagan peoples revered the true God-in-Trinity, even though their concepts of just Who this is were in many ways distorted. But because the world of dark spirituality is in fact a distorted representation of the Divine world, and the devil in his actions imitates God in a distorted fashion, it follows that the distorted divinity of the pagans is a false god, endeavoring to pass for the true God. Through the lips of the Prophet David, the Church warns us that all the gods of the heathen are devils (LXX, Ps. 95:5). It is evident that, under the guise of these pagan "trinities," satan himself is concealed together with his minions.
It is the threat posed by that future deception about which Scripture tells us to observe the signs of the times that causes a skeptical reaction to any novelty in religion such as Celebration Church. But as the article states, it is not entirely in the future. The deceptive religion of the Antichrist permeates every age in some greater or lesser measure.
The diabolical deception will closely mimic the truth. The Antichrist would not be accepted if he were obvious in his intent.
To some it may appear that keeping oneself from accepting the stamp of the Antichrist will be easy. We should not forget the warning in Scripture that in the last times even many of the chosen will be deceived, that is, many Orthodox Christians. How is this possible? It is important to understand that the principal danger lies not in the fact that this stamp will be masked and presented in the form of some technological innovation, but rather in the fact that modern, "civilized" man will be ashamed, he will be embarrassed not to accept it. This will be the greatest temptation to overcome-and many will not. Just listen to the logic: "Why do you refuse to take part in this measure that involves all of humanity, that is being instituted worldwide? After all, it symbolizes unity and the brotherly love of all peoples. It is a symbol of our unity under the aegis of a lawful global authority that has been given to all men from above. Are you against peace and order? Do you want a reign of chaos and enmity? If you are people of good will, you must take part in these cultural enactments that concern all mankind." Of course, it will turn out that one such "innocent" enactment will be, in fact, the rite of bowing down before the God-hating Antichrist. Only a discerning vigilance, illumined by the grace of God, will be able to preserve us from such subtle deception of the last times. What will be the consequences of accepting the mark of Antichrist? They will be truly horrific, destroying human souls. The fruit of denying God is always dreadful, for life without God is death.
Today we see a strong movement for peace and justice that operates out of a syncretized religious belief. We also see what ecumenism is doing to our belief that Jesus Christ and the Church He founded is the whole and entire expression of the Truth. The Benedictine nuns who have requested dispensation from their vows in order to stop offending their non-Catholic members are an example of it. They had a choice to make. Either they could continue to serve God in the Chruch He established, or they could abandon the Church and serve man. We know the choice they made. They were embarrassed by the Roman Catholic faith. Like Peter, they chose to deny Christ's Church in order to avoid being embarrassed.
In making that decision these nuns made it just a tiny bit more difficult for those of us who choose not to deny Christ's Church. They provided an example that can be held up by anyone who wants to promote the ecumenical gospel of syncretism, a gospel that does deny Christ.
Yesterday evening at Mass our celebrant was a priest who is in town while attending school. His home is Africa. Apparently he is no stranger to the sort of embarrassment and harrassment that can come our way when we confess Christ. He told us that we should anticipate and accept that we will be ridiculed and despised, just as the Apostle Paul was ridiculed and physically abused for his faith. Sobering words as we watch the boundaries between faiths disappear in the name of peace.
Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us!