Traditional Roman Catholic Thoughts

Traditional Roman Catholic Thoughts

Reintroducing Logic and Reason to the Age of Sentimentalism

Let’s Learn Latin: The Hail Mary

Have you memorized the Our Father yet? If you have good! If you haven’t, then check out the first lesson in this series.

The Hail Mary is undoubtedly one of the most powerful prayers that we Catholics have at our disposal. Many saints have taught that Satan hates the Hail Mary, which is part of the reason why he hates the Rosary. Additionally, since Latin is the language of the Church, Satan hates prayers when spoken in Latin. So what happens when you combine the awesome power of the Hail Mary with that of Latin? Boom! An instant weapon against Satan and his ilk.

As I did last time, I’ll give you the prayer below, and we’ll memorize this together. If you know the Hail Mary, I ask that you consider sharing and encourage your fellow Catholics to join in on learning this excellent prayer.

Without further ado:

Áve María, grátia pléna,
Dóminus técum.
Benedícta tu in muliéribus,
et benedíctus frúctus véntris túi, Iésus
Sáncta María, Máter Déi,
óra pro nóbis peccatóribus,
nunc et in hóra mórtis nóstrae.

Amen.

As I said in the last post, we Catholics should know our prayers and responses in Latin. If we expect our priests to start learning and offering the Traditional Latin Mass, we should also do our part. Priests mostly have to learn a brand new Mass when going from the Novus Ordo to the Traditional Latin Mass. The least we can do is be knowledgeable with our responses so that we can assist in the way that we laity can.

Thank you for joining me in this second lesson, and look for future lessons where we will continue to expand our knowledge and dive further into the prayers of our faith.

Jeff February 23, 2020 Leave A Comment Permalink

Let’s Learn Latin: The Our Father

One of my goals for this year is to learn more prayers in Latin. At one point in time, I was able to pray the Rosary in Latin, and it was pretty cool. However, over time, I’ve allowed my Latin to get rusty despite frequent attendance at the Latin Mass. That said, I thought it’d be fun to encourage you all to learn some Latin alongside me. We can go on this journey together.

Now, a simple Google search for “Our Father in Latin” would give you plenty of results, and then you could be off on your way. But what is the fun in that?

For those of you who know the prayer, good job, and keep on plugging along! I ask that you think of someone you know who might need some help with this prayer and pass it along to them. Share this on Facebook, Twitter, or whatever social media platform you prefer.

Without further ado, the Our Father in Latin:

Pater noster qui es in coelis,
sanctificetur nomen tuum;
adveniat regnum tuum,
fiat voluntas tua,
sicut in coelo et in terra.
Panem nostrum quotidianum da nobis hodie,
et dimitte nobis debita nostra,
sicut et nos dimittimus debitoribus nostris.
et ne nos inducas in tentationem
sed libera nos a malo.
Amen.

As laity, we need to learn the language of the Church, which has been and always will be Latin. If we desire our priests to offer the Traditional Latin Mass, then we should do our part and learn our prayers, as well as our responses in Latin. Priests have an enormous task before them to learn the entire Mass in Latin, along with various postures and positions that are different than that of the Novus Ordo.

Thank you for joining me in this first lesson, and look for future lessons where we will continue to expand our knowledge and dive further into the prayers of our faith.

Let’s Learn Latin: The Hail Mary is the next lesson.

Jeff February 11, 2020 2 Comments Permalink

How To Be Catholic in 2020

2019 was not an easy year to be Catholic. Though, if we are being honest, it hasn’t been easy to be a Catholic in any year. There are times within the Church’s history where it is easier to be Catholic due to cultural acceptance and toleration, but those days are long gone, at least for the foreseeable future.

What makes it even more difficult today is the complete lack of support from the hierarchy, from the local parish priest, up the chain to the bishop, the cardinals, and even the Pope himself. It goes without saying that there are the occasional priests, bishops, and cardinals who are indeed fighting the good fight. Still, these clergymen are few and far between.

Last year the Church in America, and certainly in other areas around the world, was rocked hard with scandal after scandal. From clergy sex abuse scandals to supporting immoral practices (including homosexual activities and birth control, to name a few), and even the misuse of money given by the faithful. Let us not forget the dreaded Pachamama incident that the Vatican and the Pope were both behind and in complete support of. There are still plenty of people who defend this nonsense and try to paint the Pachamama as some version of Our Blessed Mother, but who are they fooling?

What is a Catholic to do? As laity, we don’t have much power within the Church. But we do have some power, even on a human level. We laity need to say enough is enough. We are sick and tired of the abuses that the evil and immoral men in the Vatican and throughout the Church force down our throats daily, telling us that it’s Catholic. We aren’t stupid, and we won’t tolerate it anymore. 

Now, this isn’t saying that we are to leave the Church. We can’t and we won’t. We need to protest the solemn nonsense promoted by those in the hierarchy who are interested in promoting error. Whether it be Protestant, Pagan, Muslim, or whatever flavor of error is featured for that day. Compared to the Protestants protesting the Catholic identity of the Church, we are merely opposing the modernism that has become so prominently featured within the Church.

How do we do this?

  1. Find and attend the Traditional Latin Mass. If your local Novus Ordo parish doesn’t want to be faithful and there is no hope of it becoming traditional, then it is time to leave. Bad liturgy affects your soul more than you realize. It might mean that you have to travel much further to fulfill your Sunday obligation. But there is a relief when you know that you will go to Mass and don’t have to worry if the liturgy will be tampered with. You won’t have to worry about the sermons being heretical or tip-toeing close to it. If you can’t find or attend a TLM for some reason, then I suggest the following.
  2. Find a traditional priest. Encourage him to learn the TLM. Help out in any way that you can.
  3. Receive the Eucharist only from the priest or the deacon. Do not receive from a layman. Line jump if you have to or sit on the side that Father administers from.
  4. Receive the Eucharist kneeling and on the tongue. 
  5. Do not hold hands during the Our Father.
  6. Do not participate in the Sign of Peace.
  7. Dress your best. Men wear suits. Women dresses and veils.
  8. Reject any mannerism that is a novel idea that was not practiced within the Church before the Second Vatican Council.
  9. Frequent the Sacrament of Confession a minimum of once a month, ideally every other week. This way, you are always within the plus or minus eight days to receive a plenary indulgence. Go more often if you fall outside of the state of grace.
  10. Pray the Rosary daily! Our Lady of Fatima has begged and pleaded us to pray the Rosary. 

Ultimately, the entire list can be summed up as a straightforward rule: Be Catholic. We can no longer sit idly by as our Church become less Catholic. We must take an active role and lead by example. We must also remember to fast and pray, for as Our Lord said in Mark 9:29, ” This kind can go out by nothing, but by prayer and fasting.”

Jeff January 13, 2020 Leave A Comment Permalink

A Recap of 2019

2019 has come and gone, and now 2020 is underway. I thought it’d be good to start this year off with a recap of the most viewed articles of the last year. I know most people do this at the end of 2019, but, as always, I’m late to the party. For those of you who frequent this blog, or at least used to, you should know that by now.

In looking at the statistics for the last year, I only published two articles for the entire year. Pathetic.

Since I only have two articles for the last year, I’ll recap what those two articles were and then give a top 5 for the posts that most people viewed. So, without further ado, here are the top posts of the year!

Top Two Articles Published in 2019

2. Put Pride In Its Place With the Litany of Humility
In 2019, I added the Litany of Humility to my daily morning prayers. I noticed that a lot of elements of my pride began to fade away slowly. I was starting to care less what people thought of me, and I was not worried as much about being “the best.” I have, for the most part, continued this practice, only missing a day here and there. I highly encourage you do make it part of yours as well.

1. A Synopsis of the Synod of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis
Archbishop Bernard Hebda has called for a synod to be held within his Archdiocese. The synod will go on for a couple of years and in various phases. I went to one of the first listening sessions held and reported on what I encountered.

Most Read Posts of 2019

5. Traditional Latin Masses in the Twin Cities
I’ve created a page that lists all of the TLMs in the Twin Cities. I try to keep it as up to date as possible. It seems a lot of people come to the blog for merely learning where they can attend the Latin Mass here in the Twin Cities. If you are looking for TLMs in your area, you can check out latinmasstimes.com for a complete listing.

4. Why Is Matthew Kelly So Popular?
I wrote this article four years ago when people were asking why his books were always handed out after Christmas and Easter Masses. At one time, I was a big Matthew Kelly fan. In fact, you can search through older articles on this blog to find articles in which I highly praise him as being revolutionary. Alas, this is not the case anymore, nor has it been for some time.

3. Mortal Sin Against the Fourth Commandment
Wow, this article goes way back, and I’m surprised that so many people still search for this. Here I recall some mortal sins that violate the Fourth Commandment and the reasons why. Seeing that many people are still searching for, this tells me I should probably finish writing articles on mortal sins against the rest of the commandments.

2. The Rediscover Catholicism Movement Is Not the Solution
At one point, many parishes and dioceses across the country were using Matthew Kelly’s materials for parish enrichment. I wrote this article to talk about why that was a mistake. It seems that people aren’t using him as much, but then again, I’ve been hanging out in the traditional communities for the most part and ignoring what the mainstream Church is doing these days.

1. The Luminous Mysteries of the Rosary and Why You Should Dump Them
Without a doubt, my most popular post as this one always riles up people. It doesn’t matter that Pope St. John Paul II said they were optional. It doesn’t matter that he said that you didn’t need to meditate upon them and could ignore them if you wish. Apparently, pointing that out makes you a hater and someone who has clearly lost the faith (no, seriously, many commenters have accused me of this). I’ve wanted to write a follow-up article to address some of the points and to dive deeper into this thinking, and maybe this year will be the year I do that.

I’m hoping this year I write more. In fact, to ensure that I am doing that, it’s my goal to publish one article a week. Sometimes, it’s challenging to think of a topic to write about, so if you have any suggestions for topics you’d like to see or questions you’d like answered, please drop a comment below, and I’ll do my best to write something up.

God bless, and may 2020 be an enjoyable and grace-filled year for you.

Jeff January 5, 2020 Leave A Comment Permalink

A Synopsis of the Synod of the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis

This past Saturday, I had the opportunity to attend one of the Archdiocese’s Listening Sessions for their Synod. Yes, the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, like the Amazon, is having a Synod. It will last from the Fall of 2019 and conclude in the Summer of 2021. These listening sessions are hosted at parishes throughout the Archdiocese. They are supposed to help gather feedback from the laity and help guide Archbishop Bernard Hebda on what direction he should take the Archdiocese. 

Having spent the better part of a Saturday morning at one of these sessions, I thought it would be essential to discuss what I witnessed. There were many things that I saw that were alarming, as to be expected, but there were other things I observed that do give some hope.

Why A Synod?

Why is Archbishop Hebda even calling for a Synod? The primary reason, as stated in a letter that can be viewed on the website is that the Archdiocese has recently filed for bankruptcy. There is no mention as to why the Archdiocese is bankrupt, but it’s pretty apparent what the primary reason is. 

Archbishop Hebda invites all Catholics from the Archdiocese, both faithful Catholics who frequent the Sacraments and those Catholics who haven’t been to church in some time. Archbishop Hebda wants to hear from everyone. 

This is how the Synod is set-up. There will be 20 Listening Sessions that parishes throughout the Archdiocese are hosting between September 2019 through March 2020. There will be more events after these Listening Sessions, but all information is on the Synod’s website.

The listening sessions are split into three parts. The first part is comprised of speeches by both Bishop Andrew Cozzens and Archbishop Hebda, as well as some guided Lectio Divina. The second part is a series of small group discussions in which you sit at a table and discuss things that are going well in the Archdiocese and things that are not. The third and final part is being able to address Archbishop Hebda with what you feel is going well and what can be improved upon.

The Day

Speeches and Lectio Divina in the Sanctuary

If I had to guess, there were easily 200 people in attendance. The day began with several speeches from members of the Archdiocese as well as from Bishop Cozzens and Archbishop Hebda. There was also some guided Lectio Divina. Lectio Divina, if you are unaware, is a form of prayer where you slowly read scripture and contemplate what strikes out to you and reflect upon it. 

This was all done within the Sanctuary of the church. Bishop Cozzens addressed that this was intentionally done because they wanted Jesus to be present during these discussions. 

After some talking points about the need to pray in silence, a good portion of the actual prayer time was accompanied by some lovely piano with soloist song leading. There was even some “transition music” while participants were instructed to move from the Sanctuary to the gathering space.

Small-Group Discussions

After all of the piano accompanied prayer, we were instructed to break into small groups at tables that were placed in the gathering space and the basement. This is where everyone would have a different experience, so I can only speak of what happened at my table.

Our first task was to choose a facilitator. I volunteered when it became evident that no one else wanted to facilitate. The facilitator’s job was to make sure everyone got to speak if they wanted to. It was also to make sure that no debates occurred because we are there to present our viewpoints.

To be completely honest, my table ended up not being awful, and it was not as bad as I had initially feared it could be. There were supposedly 28 members from St. Joan of Arc Church in Minneapolis, infamously known in this Archdiocese as the most liberal parish present. Fortunately, none of them were at my table.

There was a common theme of sentiments at our table. Within our area of the Archdiocese, there are frequent confession times, plenty of opportunities to visit Jesus in Adoration, and we all go to parishes that have a focus on the Eucharist.

However, our table also agreed that there needed to be more done in regards to reverence, specifically with regards to reinstating the traditional Latin rites, ahem. There were a lot of older members at the table who wished that more would be done with regards to keeping young Catholics (high-school and college-aged) engaged and active within the faith.  

Overall, this was an enjoyable part of the day, seeing that like-minded Catholics are thirsting for tradition in their parishes and the Archdiocese. In fact, two of the people at my table were Lutheran converts who came into the Catholic Church because they wanted more tradition and Jesus in the Eucharist. I imagine though, had some of the liberals been at my table, it would not have been as enjoyable.

Addressing the Archbishop

The final portion of the morning was the opportunity to address Archbishop Hebda at a microphone. People were chosen randomly to address him. This was determined by the number that was given to you on your name tag at the table discussion.

This was undoubtedly the most interesting portion of the day. It was frustrating, angering, but also encouraging. 

It was frustrating because many people gave naive recommendations. These comments included the need for more Young Adult activities and tools to keep the college students within the faith. Having a strong relationship with Jesus in the Eucharist is the answer to that, especially a relationship that the Church encouraged for centuries within the traditional devotions and practices of our faith.

It was angering because several demonstrated their hatred for the family. One woman had the audacity to tell the Archbishop that families with young children should be encouraged to leave Mass immediately and go to the gathering space once the child starts making any noise. She also thought the “services” should be shorter, homilies shortened, and we needed to be more welcoming to homosexuals because, of course, she did. This lady was actually booed by some people within the audience, rightfully so. Children cry and should still be welcomed at Mass, but obviously, there are times when you should remove them. For example, my baby girl who is 10 months is currently in a fit of joyful shrills, which, yeah, we do remove her when she starts to near peak volume.

It was hopeful because a few brave souls did get up and asked that the Archdiocese stop making our liturgies and liturgical events Protestant (yes, they actually used that word). There was also a strong sense that we need to have a focus on Jesus, truly present in the Eucharist everywhere, as well as a need for reverence. One college-aged young man specifically said that he didn’t want more programs, but more traditional Masses, adoration, and deep faith formation.

Signs of Hope in the Archdiocese

As stated multiple times already, many people believe in Jesus Christ, truly present in the Eucharist. These people also have a desire for tradition and reverence, and likely, given time, would welcome the traditional aspects of our faith if they were exposed to them. 

There were several points made to the Archbishop by a dad about home-schooling and the general need for the diocese to understand better and accommodate home-schooling families. He emphasized specifically the concern around the education and catechesis the children are receiving to prepare them for receiving the sacraments. Many people expressed their gratitude for the availability of the sacraments, specifically confession, and Eucharistic Adoration in this area of the Archdiocese. One participant expressed a strong desire to see the Latin Rite restored in the Archdiocese, as well as allowing young children to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation so the Holy Spirit can begin working in them earlier.

Signs of Sadness in the Archdiocese

Common themes arose for where people within the Archdiocese believe we should go to improve things. 

  • Many people did not show signs of reverence. Much of this event took place within the Church sanctuary, yet very few people genuflected, blessed themselves with holy water, or composed themselves as if they were in a Church. 
  • The laity believes the Church should do all of the teaching of the faith and they should not have to do any of their own research/homework.
  • Pope Francis is the only Pope and the Second Vatican Council is the only council we’ve ever had.
  • Many of the attendees were over the age of 50. So the failed ideas that have partially gotten us into this position are the same ideas being presented…again.

The saddest part of this entire affair is that only one person brought up the elephant in the room. The biggest reason that we are in this mess is the lack of accountability of our clergy. One person mentioned the sex abuse crisis, and he was a victim of it. He read a prayer he wrote asking God for healing for the victimized, forgiveness to the predators, and protection for our clergy. It is a beautiful prayer, and he is a brave soul for going up and speaking as candidly as he did.

To reiterate, the reason for having this Synod is because the Archdiocese is bankrupt. Why is the Archdiocese bankrupt? Because of the sex abuse scandal within the Archdiocese. Yet, there is zero mention of the scandal (except for the gentleman as mentioned earlier). It is predictably glossed over as if the reason we are bankrupt is that no Catholics are giving to the Archdiocese.

Meanwhile, our Shepherds tell us to be respectful to these ideas that are different than ours (read: not Catholic) and reiterate Church teaching to these people. In short, do the job of the bishop!

Our Shepherds let the wolves into the pen to attack the sheep and tell them to defend themselves because they have other priorities. Our Shepherds do not know their role. They do not believe that they are to lay down their lives for us but to oversee the sheep as a commercial commodity.

Conclusion

Overall, there was a lack of reverence for Jesus. Many walked within the Sanctuary as if it was a stage. Those who led the Lectio Divina readings did bow, but few people genuflected. Now, I will give the benefit of the doubt that perhaps these individuals were nervous about messing up, but it does demonstrate a lack of awareness about the meaning and purpose of the Sanctuary.

Another thing that was disconcerting was the number of women that were chosen to lead the readings of the Lectio Divina scriptures. Not only were both bishops in attendance, but there were also many priests and a few deacons present. For an activity that should be prayerful, it should have been led by a member of the clergy. It confuses the role of the priest, who does have a hierarchical authority over leading the laity in prayer, as just someone who administers the sacraments and oversees a parish.

It is unclear whether or not the Archdiocese will lead the faithful to Jesus Christ in the Eucharist. It is something we should pray for. It is also too early to tell whether this Synod will bare any positive fruit. It seems unwise to ask those who don’t follow Christ for ideas on how to better follow Him. If you don’t ask misbehaved children how to parent better, then you don’t ask disengaged Catholics what the Church needs to do to cater to them.

I remain unconvinced that this Synod will address the actual needs and concerns of the Church in her current crisis. I am convinced that those of us who live within the Archdiocese should attend these sessions.

For those of us who want to see tradition restored in the Latin Rite, we should attend to voice that. It may fall on deaf ears, it might not. But there may be other people attending who may be open to tradition, or entirely on board. By voicing our opinion, we inspire them, and perhaps they will encourage their friends and their priest. By being there, we might encourage other priests who are in attendance.

As of this writing, there are still 18 of these listening sessions being hosted. I highly encourage you to attend one or more of them if you are able.

Mary, Queen of the Church, pray for us.

Jeff October 2, 2019 Leave A Comment Permalink