I read a fantastic article at The Remnant titled “Why I’m Disregarding Laudato Si and You Should Too” by Chris Jackson. It is a very lengthy article, but is worth the time it takes for Mr. Jackson to dissect and critique parts of the encyclical. You can read the article HERE.
While Laudato Si is an encyclical coming from Pope Francis, I am not going to spend any time reading it in its entirety. I will read the paragraphs that are highlighted in articles, but I will not read it from start to finish, at least not anytime soon. There are better things to read. Just because I choose not to read Laudato Si completely, this does not mean that I cannot speak freely and express my opinion upon the encyclical either. Using the aforementioned mentality, you cannot critique nor condemn anything immoral if you do not partake of it.
The language we find in Laudato Si could have been written by Al Gore or any other “climate change” alarmist. Data has been released stating that so-called Climate Change is nothing but an elaborate hoax. It does not exist. Because climate change isn’t real, the urgency demonstrated in this encyclical festers into nothingness.
It is true that Pope Francis condemns abortion in this document. However, he spends as much time condemning abortion as he does air conditioning. The destruction of innocent life and the running of air conditioning are not comparable, nor even on the same moral plane. Abortion is murder, one of the four sins that cries out to Heaven for vengeance. Running the air conditioner is not even a venial sin.
There is much evil lurking in the world. ISIS, the destruction of the Church from within, homosexuality being ushered in across the globe are but a few examples of the evils this world is plagued with. It leads one to wonder what the Holy Father is thinking when his priority is not addressing these evils, but perpetuating the lies that have been handed to us by corrupt organizations who look for ways to bring about the Catholic Church’s destruction.
The bits and pieces of this encyclical I have read sheds light on Pope Francis’ beliefs. He lacks a basic understanding of Catholic principles. He has no belief in the story of Creation as told in the book of Genesis. Jesus is not needed in this call to “save the world” as Our Lord is hardly mentioned. Pope Francis has said “proselytism is solemn non-sense” when it comes to Catholicism, but proselytizes in an entire encyclical on the need for the world to help “sister Earth”.
The entire encyclical is riddled and laced with modernism, a heresy as given in an encyclical by Pope St. Pius X. Those who disagree with my assessments and those of Mr. Jackson’s will eagerly ignore Pascendi Dominici Gregis. We will be accused of “cherry-picking” the beliefs that we like while ignoring others, all too similarly to them, who pay no heed to the dangers that prior Popes have forewarned us of.
While there may be “some good things” within this encyclical, we should expect the Pope to write an encyclical that is full of good things. If you were handed a brownie and there was just “a smidge of poo” in it, would you still consume the brownie, eating around the poo, or would you throw it away? Effectively, we have been given a poo brownie with Laudato Si, and I will not be consuming any of it.
If you’ve been paying attention at all, you’ll know that there are plenty of the Church’s enemies operating from within the highest ranks of the Church, even the Vatican. These enemies are Modernists, heretics, and those who want to see the Church handed over to Satan. These men and women have spent the last 100 years infiltrating the Church and are finally seeing their efforts bear fruit within these last few years.
Objectively speaking, they still have a long ways to go, as they will not rest until every single individual who professes Christ’s sacrifice and His Truth is dead or silenced. However, they are becoming far more comfortable with themselves as they are winning more and more battles. Look no closer than the number of Bishops and Cardinals at the Synod who are in favor of giving communion to the divorced, remarried, and active homosexuals.
Their victories are allowing them to sleep more peacefully at night, I’d imagine. They rest easily, knowing that the Vicar of Christ is not going to stop them. After all, he approved the Relatio and continues to invite Cardinals and Bishops who openly preach a “gospel of acceptance”.
But the one thing they have forgotten in their efforts to destroy the Church from within, is who God Is. At one point they knew that God was omnipotent and unchanging. They knew that God was God. They knew that Jesus Christ was the Son of God, true God and true Man. They knew Jesus was divine. They knew what the Church taught, yet they did not believe. They wanted to redefine who God, Jesus, the Holy Ghost, Mary, the Saints, and the Church was. They created a god in their own image and likeness. They created another religion.
As the years have progressed and their evil has made itself manifest, we see that few people really know who God is. The problem. however, is these evil individuals have also forgotten. They have bought into the lie much like Adam and Eve bought into the serpent’s lie in the Garden. They no longer recognize who God is, but cling to their imaginative ideal of what they wanted God to be.
While all of this may sound depressing and glum, there is always hope. God is all powerful and omnipotent, and He will have His justice served to these transgressors. We need to pray, fast, and stick close to the Sacraments. We want our enemies to repent of their sins and convert. But we must also recognize that one day, they will meet Jesus Christ face to face, and will have to answer for their crimes against Him and His Church.
Whether this is through their own death, or through a great chastisement as Our Lady of Fatima has warned about almost 100 years ago, they will be forced to seen the error of their ways. And while they rested peacefully here on Earth, thinking that they had won, they have in reality been the biggest of losers and will live in torment for eternity.
As you have likely heard, Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Archbishop John Neinstedt, of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis . Below is Archbishop Neinstedt’s statement:
In order to give the Archdiocese a new beginning amidst the many challenges we face, I have submitted my resignation as Archbishop of Saint Paul and Minneapolis to our Holy Father, Pope Francis, and I have just received word that he has accepted it. The Catholic Church is not our Church, but Christ’s Church, and we are merely stewards for a time. My leadership has unfortunately drawn attention away from the good works of His Church and those who perform them. Thus, my decision to step down.
It has been my privilege the last seven years to serve this local Church. I have come to appreciate deeply the vitality of the 187 parishes that make up the Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis. I am grateful for the support I have received from priests, deacons, religious men and women and lay leaders, especially those who have collaborated with me in the oversight of this local Church.
I leave with a clear conscience knowing that my team and I have put in place solid protocols to ensure the protection of minors and vulnerable adults.
I ask for continued prayers for the well-being of this Archdiocese and its future leaders. I also ask for your continued prayers for me.
Here are a few thoughts I have with the entire situation. The timing seems far too coincidental with Bishop Finn’s resignation, almost two months ago to the day. With both resignations, we find similar language such as “a new beginning” and to allow “healing”. It seems odd at how close these two were, and I would suspect that both of these bishops were forced from their post.
Pope Benedict XVI seems to have established an odd precedent with his abdication. Both Archbishop Neinstedt and Bishop Finn were appointed by Pope Benedict. All three have stepped down due to some form of sexual abuse. At this rate, most of the good bishops that have been appointed by Pope Benedict will be forced out.
Pope Francis will likely appoint a bishop who “smells of the sheep”, a bishop of “mercy”, and one who isn’t always talking about abortion and gay marriage. In other words, another Archbishop Blaise Cupich, We will unlikely see a replacement who is traditional, but one who is charismatic.
All the progress made in the Archdiocese of St. Paul/Minneapolis to restore the sacred and bring back the Traditional Latin Mass will be for naught. The FSSP will be forced out. The Traditional Latin Mass parishes will be severely punished. Priests within the Archdiocese who feel called to learn the TLM will now fear for their well-being. Suppression will occur. Reverent Novus Ordos will go difficult to find. It’ll be like the days of old with Archbishop Flynn. The Seminary will be reformed again and all the traditional elements the current seminarians are learning will be thrown out the window.
Archbishop Neinstedt is paying the price for his vocal discord with homosexual “marriage”. The gay lobby is powerful and will silence anyone who will try to expose them. Archbishop Flynn, who was in charge during the entire priest sex abuse crisis and who moved these child molesters around should be the one who is publicly tarred, feathered and thrown in jail. But then again, he is a liberal, so he is a “good guy”.
I also would not be surprised if Cardinal Burke’s Solemn Pontifical Mass that is scheduled for September is cancelled.
I hope I am wrong, but seeing how the last two years of this pontificate has revealed poor appointments for bishops while faithful bishops are being removed for the mismanagement of their predecessors, I’m left with a sense that this is bad news for St. Paul and Minneapolis.
If you are going to stand up for the Truth and proclaim God’s mercy and love, you need to be prepared for the persecution that will follow: “If the world hate you, know ye, that it hath hated me before you. If you had been of the world, the world would love its own: but because you are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. Remember my word that I said to you: The servant is not greater than his master. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you: if they have kept my word, they will keep yours also.” John 15:18-20.
It is not an easy road to follow Jesus. He even told us so: “Enter ye in at the narrow gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way that leadeth to destruction, and many there are who go in thereat. How narrow is the gate, and strait is the way that leadeth to life: and few there are that find it!” Matthew 7:13-14.
Whether you stand against pornography, homosexuality, transsexualism, extra-marital sex, divorce, remarriage, or any other sexual evil, you will be persecuted. The destruction of the family and society is in full force. The Devil and his minions, both angelic and human, are out on the prowl looking to destroy anybody who is in their way. But don’t fret. You’re reward is not here on this earth, but in Heaven where your Father is.
You will be called a bigot for standing against indecency. You will be called judgmental for calling out sin. You will be called a hater for your disgust at sin. But this is all good in the eyes of God, because anything that is offensive to Him and goes against Him is worthy of destruction. But our Lord is merciful, and is willing to pour His mercy upon those who seek it.
Matthew Kelly is a front runner in the Catholic speaking circuit. He has written numerous books including Rediscover Catholicism and The Four Signs of a Dynamic Catholic. He is the founder of Dynamic Catholic. Over the last several years he has grown in popularity. While this is great for him, his methods are effective for a minute few, and ineffective for the vast majority of practicing Catholics.
I used to be a huge fan of Matthew Kelly. I have a lot of his talks, a couple of his books, and I would give out copies of Rediscover Catholicism to lapsed Catholics. You can even find many mentions of him throughout this blog. Matthew Kelly has played a role in my desire to learn more about the faith. However, having gained the knowledge I now have, I’ve realized that Matthew Kelly doesn’t teach Catholicism in its entirety. His approach is laced with modernism, rooted in emotionalism, and waters down Catholic identity to appeal to a Protestant mentality.
During recent years, parishes across the country have been giving out copies of Rediscover Catholicism to those in attendance at Christmas and Easter Masses. The concept is to re-engage Catholics who are only coming to Mass on Christmas and Easter. The program seemed to have an impact, as many people across the country were coming back to the Catholic Church. While I have no complaints about bringing people back to the Church, I do have a serious concern about methods that use emotion as opposed to logic and reason.
Rediscover Catholicism is a book written for a very specific audience. It’s written for those who hardly identify as Catholic, or who have left the Church completely. It’s an appetizer to the grand banquet of Catholic cuisine. The book’s purpose is to present the case for Catholicism simply and pithily. It only scrapes the surface and doesn’t dig deeply. It relies heavily on emotion and sentimentalism.
The introductory story of Rediscover Catholicism is meant to be a parable of God the Father giving up Jesus Christ, His Only Son. The analogy is incomplete unless the reader has a devotion to Jesus in the Eucharist. In Kelly’s example, the parents decide to sacrifice their son, ignore his pleas for help and knowledge, and leave him questioning as his parents abandon him.
There is a significant difference between Kelly’s tale and the sacrifice Jesus willingly embraced in order to bring eternal life to the world. Jesus knew what was involved and what was to come of His passion. This boy did not know what was going on. Allowing your child to choose to give up their life to save those around them, and volunteering your child without their consent are two vastly different theological choices. With Jesus, we see a sacrifice of choice. With Kelly, we see a forced victim. Jesus laid down His life willingly for others. Kelly’s tale is contrived, an artificial and incomplete analogy.
The Rediscover Catholicism and Dynamic Catholic Institute mentalities are awash in modernism. Modernism was deemed heresy by Pope St. Pius X, and described as the synthesis of all heresies. Modernism reveals itself by presenting something very traditional and recognizably Catholic in one context, and something very non-Catholic almost as a counterpoint, or a contradiction, attached to it. An example of modernism would be an author talking about how important Catholic identity is on one page of his book, and on the next page discuss how each person can worship however they feel brings them closer to God.
An example would be this statement on how Matthew Kelly views tradition in Rediscover Catholicism:
Many are calling for a return to the past. These people are reactionaries, not visionaries. Too often their cries are driven by a fear of uncertainty and a grappling for stability. Rather than placing their trust in God and cooperating with his future, they allow their humanity to get the better of them as they try to control things beyond their control.” Matthew Kelly, “Rediscover Catholicism” page 22-23 2010
Pope St. Pius X states in his encyclical Pascendi Dominici Gregis (1907):
They exercise all their ingenuity in an effort to weaken the force and falsify the character of tradition, so as to rob it of all its weight and authority. But for Catholics nothing will remove the authority of the second Council of Nicea, where it condemns those “who dare, after the impious fashion of heretics, to deride the ecclesiastical traditions, to invent novelties of some kind…or endeavor by malice or craft to overthrow any one of the legitimate traditions of the Catholic Church”.
Many parishes are beginning to switch over from traditional catechetical programs and are using Rediscover Catholicism and other programs by the Dynamic Catholic Institute as their course material. This would be the equivalent of using a hammer to pound in a screw. You are using a tool which has an already intended purpose in a way in which it was not intended.
At one time I was convinced that using Matthew Kelly’s methods would be the most effective way to get people interested in Catholicism. I attended his Living Life with Passion and Purpose event. I was even ecstatic when the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis partnered with him to create the “Rediscover Faith” series which was incorporated in each parish within the Archdiocese. I was thrilled about the “Rediscover Catholic Celebration” conference the Archdiocese hosted in 2013 which was attended by 5,000 Catholics.
Looking back, Rediscover Catholicism is a very basic explanation of Christianity. There is so much more to learn about Catholicism that requires us to engage material which is at a deeper level of understanding. From what I have seen, this program does not encourage the learner to look deeper into the more advanced subject matter, instead, enabling one to keep buying books at the same level of reason. While there is nothing wrong with simple explanations, to keep someone from advancing in their faith is sinful. A pre-school teacher not only gives his students the information and knowledge required to advance to Kindergarten, but also encourages the skills and curiosity to want to learn. Likewise, a Kindergarten teacher teaches the knowledge and skills required of his students to advance to First Grade. Additionally, if the subject matter is mired in Modernist philosophies, then the experience will be confusing at best and discouraging at worst. Heresy leads us further from Christ, not closer.
According to Kelly, 85% of Catholics leave the Church within seven years of being confirmed. Last year, Matthew Kelly released Decision Point, a confirmation program designed to address this problem. Having taught Religious Education to 10th and 11th graders going into Confirmation (confirming children at this age is part of the problem), I was excited.
I recall that in one of Father Robert Barron’s talks, he mentions a problem with Catholic schools. At his niece’s high school graduation party, she had displayed all of her books from her senior year. Included were books on Calculus, Chemistry, Physics, and many books in Latin. When Father Barron got to her religion book, it was a thin book in which all the pages were cartoonish and the subject matter was what was to be expected for a child. We are teaching high school students advanced academic and sociological material, yet we can’t give them anything intellectually challenging or stimulating in regard to the Catholic faith.
I bring this up because every page of Decision Point is littered with random doodles. Every page. Additionally, the subject matter is light. From my perusal, there was no explanation about the consequences of Hell, nor even mention of Hell. There was no mention of Purgatory. There were no explanations of mortal or venial sin. Zero references to the Devil, but one mention of Satan when Kelly quotes the Renewal of Baptism formula (pg. 259). There is one mention of original sin.
But, rest assured, there are at least 75 references to Kelly’s self-coined “Best-Version-Of-Yourself” mantra to instill a sense of the feel-goods. If this book is meant for Catholics in middle school and high school, why are we treating them like toddlers?
There are no serious reasons regarding why we need to embrace Jesus Christ and the Catholic Church. When asked, “Why should I stay in the Catholic Church?” Kelly responds with:
There are lots of reasons you should stay Catholic and grow in your faith every day, but what is more compelling than to say, “You should stay because Jesus prayed you would”? There in the garden of Gethsemane two thousand years ago Jesus agonized over every person who would think about leaving his Church, and he prayed that they would remain one. - Decision Points pg 223.
Matthew Kelly says “there are lots of reasons” to stay Catholic, but uses a weak reason rooted in sentimentalism to try to make you feel bad. He doesn’t discuss it being the Church that Christ started as the reason. He doesn’t talk about Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus which is the Catholic Doctrine that states there is no salvation outside of the Catholic Church. Instead of using logic and reason to engage the maturing Christian reader into making a lasting decision on why they should be Catholic, he uses sentimentalism and emotions to persuade them to be Catholic. Essentially, “not being Catholic makes Jesus sad” is his reasoning.
Sentimentalism emerges in most of Kelly’s language. “The Best Version of Yourself” is a term Kelly began using after he read the Second Vatican Council’s declaration stating the universal call to holiness. When teaching this declaration, many people would shrug off the idea of holiness. He began using this catch-phrase and people responded positively. While changing the language a bit to help drive a point (Jesus did this with His parables), it’s important to remember that context is needed. This phrase only works when you apply a lens of holiness and God’s law to it. Any other lens and this phrase can be used to promote a litany of sins.
Eventually, this blossoms fully into the mentality of “feel good Catholicism”. If the teaching is too hard, too old, or doesn’t leave you with a feeling of joy, then it isn’t good. This can be seen in 2014’s “Rediscover Catholic Celebration” put on by the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. There was no mention of having a reverent Mass. Everything had to feel good. No classical Gregorian Chant, but plenty of Modernist Praise and Worship tunes. No time for deep contemplation, but enough time to do a “flash mob” to a rendition of Pharrell’s “Happy“. Planners had reserved room for 10,000 people. Only 5,000 came.
At this event, they discussed the brand new program they were going to launch; “Amazing Parish”. Amazing Parish is similar to “Rebuilt” in which we forego most of our Catholic identity in all facets of parish life to appear more Protestant friendly and appeal to those leaving the Catholic Church for Mega-Churches. It is important to note that this “mega-church” mentality doesn’t work. Parishes that embrace tradition and reverent Masses are the parishes which see a boost in parish attendance and tithing. The Church in general has been trying to appear more Protestant for the last 50 years and are seeing the fruits manifest in the problems we face; priest shortages, vocation declines, parishes merging/clustering/closing. Becoming more Protestant won’t fix the problem.
There are plenty of liturgical abuses in many Masses across the world. Taking issue with these abuses is normal and good. Matthew Kelly is a firm believer that those who take issue with these abuses are the ones who have the problem, not the priests who allow the transgressions. The complainers have an imperfect heart for not appreciating Jesus Christ’s presence in the Eucharist. Ultimately, this logic reduces one to accept “clown Masses are okay, and if you have a problem with it, you are deficient in your faith”.
The works of Matthew Kelly were a stepping stone in my faith, but his approach is insufficient. His books are simple, and don’t touch upon the important aspects of the Catholic faith. Each person is unique and different, and each person is entitled to hear the fullness of the Truth. There are plenty of resources written prior to 1965 that explain Catholicism concisely and provide plenty of meat to chew on for both Catholics and non-Catholics alike. I would highly recommend reading St. Peter Canisius’ “Catechism for Catholics” to get a solid understanding of Catholic teaching. There are some good nuggets in what Matthew Kelly has to offer, but due to the Modernism that is laced throughout much of his material, it would be best to avoid it and stick to the catechetical material which has been developed throughout the history of the Church.
Finally, while these novel methods may bring an influx of people into the Church the methods do not have the lasting effects would the methods that the Church has had at her disposal over the last 2000 years. I don’t think Matthew Kelly embraces Modernism intentionally. I believe he’s a product of the catechesis of his day. The Church has suffered greatly these last 50+ years in catechesis and the knowledge and attitude of today’s Catholics demonstrates it. Matthew Kelly has a gentle demeanor which many find attractive. If he would embrace traditional teachings and present them clearly, he would make many Catholics stronger in their faith, a faith which will last longer than the popularity of his latest book.
The Traditional Latin Mass, the Baltimore Catechism, and traditional Catechesis have plenty of substance to feed the faithful and an 80% retention rate prior to 1965. New ways to present classic material come out each year which tries to address the now 15% retention rate, and fail. Perhaps we should use what the Church has always used: good old fashioned Truth.
My Facebook and Twitter feeds have become flush with pictures of Bruce Jenner, dressed as a “woman”. It amazes me how many people, both Catholic and non-Catholic alike, have come out to “support” his decision to become a woman. We live in an age where logic and reason have been thrown out the window and emotionalism determines right and wrong.
I refuse to show that hideous magazine cover making the rounds
Bruce will always be a man, no matter what mutilation he does to his body. Science supports this because he was born with a Y chromosome. No matter what alterations or surgeries he has performed, he will never be able to remove that dreaded Y chromosome.
Those who support his decision based purely on the argument “let *her* be who *she* wants to be” ignore the fact that Bruce needs to change. These same people argue that those who are gay should not have to change, but those who are transgender must change. It is hypocritical to force one person to change for their perversion, and to allow another person to stay the same for theirs.
Additionally, calling a man a woman is an insult to all women. What is to stop a man from waltzing into a woman’s bathroom, fully dressed and in all physical appearances a man, and claiming that he identifies himself as a woman? Only a couple of weeks ago, this man would be rightfully labeled a pervert. However, because you now “support” Bruce’s decision, you can no longer stop a man from walking into the ladies room.
For those Catholics who are openly opposed to pornography, extra-marital sex, and a litany of other sins, but have reservations with the out-lash that is properly being directed at Bruce, this is for you. If you are unable to condemn all forms of sin and perversion, then you have no right to condemn any forms of sin and perversion. All of your efforts to evangelize and teach sinners about the Truth and beauty of God’s love and authentic sexuality are for naught. You do not help bring people closer to the Truth, but push them farther away. When a sinner sees you showing preferential treatment towards another sinner, they will rightfully call you a hypocrite.
Bruce Jenner needs psychological help, prayers, and healing. The mutilation of one’s body is sinful. Acting out on unnatural behavior will not lead him to happiness, but despair, misery, and hopelessness. God in His perfection does not make mistakes, but humans in all of their imperfection do.
I, your unworthy servant, your slave, am deserving of each lash that you received during your scourging ten-fold. Each strike and each blow that the Romans lashed upon you should be mine. You did not deserve any of the punishment upon which you received, yet you willingly took upon this Cross, so that I may not have to receive this beating.
I should be the one who should be tied upon that pillar. I should be the one upon that cross. Your precious blood does not deserve to be spilled, yet you love me so much that You will it. I deserve this punishment for the numerous times that I have failed you and sinned. For the times that I have spat in your face like the Pharisees and Sanhedrin.
Each blow You received I should have received to atone for the sins and injustices I have committed. Yet as your slave, I do not receive any merits for these. Like you Lord, I offer each blow up for the salvation of others. I give each merit to Your Mother to do as she pleases, for she, being free from Original Sin, is in perfect unity with Your will, and knows where each grace should go.
Please forgive me for each sin I have committed, and assist me to grow in holiness, so that I may love you with my whole heart, and to do Your will, so that upon my death, I may be united with you in Heaven.
Patrick Archbold was the sole speaker at the May Argument of the Month Club. Pat is a former writer for the National Catholic Register, and writes on Creative Minority Report along with his brother Matt. Matt generally writes about fun things like puppies, kittens, and babies. Pat writes about how they are all going to die.
Patrick’s talk was about the “gay marriage” debate. He explained that we shouldn’t hold any hope that the Supreme Court will rule in favor of traditional marriage because they have already struck down the Defense of Marriage Act. The plan has already been laid for them to rule that gays can get married and that the government will provide legal recognition of their “marriage”. Additionally, there will be punishment for those who refuse services to gays. Catholic schools will likely be sued out of existence. Churches will be sued and lose their tax-exempt status.
He pointed out that if you don’t think this is too far into the future, you can look around at what is going on today. Christian bakers and florists are being sued, shut down, and being imposed with criminal fines for denying services to homosexuals looking for goods for their “gay wedding”. Soon, Christians will be going to jail. Mobs will form and destroy businesses. There is already evidence of this with what happened to Memories Pizza in Indiana. The irony of it all? How many gay weddings are having pizza as their caterer of choice? Yet, they don’t care. If you aren’t with them, you are against them and must be destroyed.
This is only where we are at currently and this is only with one example. But really, there is a deeper issue that is the root of all of this. Pat thinks, and I happen to agree, that the reason we are losing the culture war is because its a spiritual battle, and we are losing ammunition. Simply put, Catholics and most Christians aren’t practicing their faith. Period.
The Catholic Church has not changed any doctrine. However, with the way she behaves by both her members and prelates, she acts as if she has. Many Catholics do not believe that the Catholic faith is necessary. Most Catholics believe you can practice whatever faith you choose whether it be Protestantism, Judaism, Islam, atheism, etc. They believe Hell is reserved for those who are Hitler, or worse. You can see this attitude not just within the laity, but within the hierarchy as well.
Why do so many Catholics not believe in the faith? Because the teachers have not taught the faith. These teachers haven’t passed on the catechism, or the dogmas, or the doctrines that the Catholic Church proclaims. Not only are the teachers at fault, but the religious, the priests, and the bishops have failed to proclaim the Truth, and lately the Church has failed to stand firm in these teachings when confronted by the world.
Shortly after the Second Vatican Council, contraception was accepted by most of the Cardinals. Even with Pope Paul VI’s encyclical Humanae Vitae upholding the teaching that contraception was immoral and forbidden by Catholics to use, the prelates went against the teaching and told the laity that it was okay. The rest of the prelates stayed silent. The teachings of the Church didn’t change, but the behavior of the Church was as if she did.
Another example Pat gave was a homily given by his parish priest. The Gospel for that day was Luke 14:8-10, in which we are to take the lower seat, so that we can be given the higher seat. From this reading, his pastor came to the convoluted idea that we weren’t to look down upon other religions because they are just as equal to ours. After the Mass, Pat asked him to clarify, in which the priest stated “the Church abrogated the teaching on no salvation outside of the Church”. There are many stories similar to this one of priests giving false teachings right in the middle of their homilies. This has been going on for decades.
We as Catholics must stand for all Truth. Not this Truth or that Truth, but all of it.
A few months ago, Reinhard Cardinal Marx, the head of the German Episcopal Conference, threatened schism if the upcoming Synod of the Family did not allow the divorced, remarried, and active homosexuals to receive Jesus in the Eucharist. Vincent Cardinal Nichols who is the head of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales celebrated a Mass honoring homosexuals. They aren’t trying to live their life according to the Church, but are those who want the Church to change her teachings. This came two weeks after he criticized a group of priests who petitioned the Vatican to uphold Catholic doctrine at the Synod of the Family.
And then we have Timothy Cardinal Dolan, archbishop of New York. In the infamous Meet the Press interview, when asked about incredibly poor, but fabulously gay football player Michael Sam, Cardinal Dolan said “Bravo, good for him!”
In the last election, “Catholic” Governor Andrew Cuomo had no opposition from the Cardinal. A few days before the election, Cardinal Dolan wrote a letter to the New York Times stating that Catholics need to vote in line with their faith. That’s it. In fact, Cardinal Dolan left town and went across the country during this time. His actions left the New York Times befuddled as to why the Church just shrunk away from the fight.
Additionally, Cardinal Dolan applauded openly gay groups marching in the Saint Patrick’s Day Parade, even though his predecessor Edward Cardinal Egan said there would be no way that they would ever be able to march on his watch.
Finally, this takes us to the Synod of the Family at the Vatican. The Bishops at the Synod voted to remove faulty language from the final relatio that would be published. Pope Francis overrode their decision and the relation was published with the faulty language. What language was so important that Pope Francis wanted it included? “Homosexuals have gifts and qualities to offer the Christian community”. How can you accept and value something that the Catechism of the Catholic Church labels as grave sin?
Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that “homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.” They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved. CCC 2357
So what do we do? How do we fix this? We can’t. But God can.
What we can do, is preach the Truth, the whole Truth to the world and restore traditional Catholic worship. We must believe all of it no matter what, and we will pay the price for our beliefs.
While this was not your usual argument with two sides going back and forth, it was great to see Pat present a good argument for his position. We do need to restore traditional worship. We need to believe everything the Church proclaims, and we must practice this faith. Until then, our efforts will be in vain.
Earlier this week, Fr. Ed Fride, pastor of Christ the King parish in Ann Arbor, Michigan made news when he hosted a concealed pistol license class. Fr. Fride gave two reasons in a seven-page message to his parish about the decision. One reason explained how difficult it is to fit these classes into busy schedules. The second was “doing it here at the parish, co-sponsored by the parish, was an attempt to get people to to realize the reality of the threat and take it seriously”.
Unfortunately, Bishop Earl Boyea, Bishop of the Diocese of Lansing released a statement addressing the concerns of guns on church property and the classes being held at Christ the King (emphasis mine):
Bishop Boyea has never given permission for anyone to carry a concealed weapon in a church or school of the Diocese of Lansing.
You don’t need permission to carry a concealed weapon in Michigan. You only need to have a permit issued by the State. It only becomes a concern if there is a visible sign outside the entrance.
This ban on weapons has now been extended to “open carry” in our churches and our schools, thus making them gun-free zones.
Gun-free zones in schools have worked well for Columbine and Sandy Hook. You would think people would learn; banning guns only hinders law abiding citizens. Those who are looking to inflict violence on the innocent in a church or school will still bring in their guns.
Additionally, Bishop Boyea further states that Concealed Pistol License classes are inappropriate activities to be held on Church property.
I’m unsure how properly learning how to use a fire arm in a safe and reasonable manner in order to protect yourself, your family and your neighbor is considered “inappropriate”. Self-defense is a God-given right and is outlined in the Catechism paragraphs 2263-2264.
As always we rely on the public or professional security forces to provide for public safety on Church property.”
In other words, no matter how much training you have, you aren’t allowed to carry. You aren’t trained enough to defend others unless it is your paid job. Using the Bishop’s own logic, we can ignore his comments on guns because he isn’t a professional in this area. Since his job is to teach Catholicism, he should stick to that. Additionally, if a shooter enters a Church and begins murdering those in attendance, the response time for a “professional security force” is going to be at least 5 minutes, as opposed to the trained parishioner’s response time of 5 seconds. But, if we wait for the professionals, we can assume more blood will be spilled.
Bishop Boyea has effectively made his flock easy targets by any individual who wishes to inflict bodily harm on a parish. You would think in a day when we have militant atheists and ISIS as threats on our doorsteps, the Bishop would be more than willing to protect his flock.
Some would argue that if you respect the Bishop’s wishes and if a shooting was to occur, those caught in the cross-fire would be martyrs. I would argue that this is incorrect. Catholic teaching tells us that we have the right to protect ourselves and our neighbors (CCC 2263-2264), using physical force if need be. If a gunman or gunmen were to enter a church and begin shooting, I would have the God-given right to use physical force to stop the threat. Seeing as they have a long ranged weapon, I would need a long ranged weapon to stop the threat. I certainly won’t have the time to run up and stop them using hand-to-hand combat.
Additionally, being killed while present at Mass does not automatically make one a martyr. There is an interior disposition that is required which necessitates the martyr to desire and want martyrdom (CCC 2473-2474).
If anyone dies because of his decision, Bishop Boyea will be responsible. It is irresponsible and negligent for him to make his flock sitting ducks. Let’s just hope ISIS is respectful of his request to leave their guns at home.