Traditional Roman Catholic Thoughts

Traditional Roman Catholic Thoughts

Reintroducing Logic and Reason to the Age of Sentimentalism

Rediscover Jesus

All of the posts under the "Rediscover Jesus" category.

Top Posts of 2017

Happy New Year! As we roll in 2018, I wanted to take a few minutes to highlight the top posts on the blog. In years past, I would highlight the top ten articles from that particular year and share it on Facebook and Twitter. This year, I thought I’d try something a little different.

As some of you may be new, it’d be good to highlight the posts in an article. One thing I noticed that was different this year was that my top ten posts were all written in previous years, meaning that none of the articles I published in 2017 were the most read articles. So what I thought I’d do was to highlight the top ten posts (top five from 2017 and top five from previous years) and comment as to why they might be.

Top Five Blog Posts of 2017.

#5
Four Years of a Disastrous Papacy

I wrote this on the evening of Pope Francis’ four year anniversary of being elected Pope. I highlight some of the things he has done, as well as what makes his papacy, in my opinion, the worst of them all. Not only does he repeatedly blasphemy both God and Mary, but he both preaches a doctrine and lives a life that is not Catholic.

With the release of the “Dictator Pope” book last month, I think it demonstrates the type of Pope we have.

#4
Heretical Garbage: For Research Purposes Only

I created a stamp that allows you to mark books (or anything really) with this phrase. I had seen this idea as a picture at some point but couldn’t find an affordable way of purchasing it. To date, 56 copies have been sold. Thank you!

#3
Pope Francis Denies the Catholic Faith and the Precepts of the Church Again

About a year ago now, Pope Francis said that if you “go to Mass, but then don’t speak with my parents, help my grandparents or the poor, go and see those who are sick, this does not prove my faith, there’s no point.” One of the precepts of the Church is to go to Mass every week, unless some circumstance prevents you, typically health related. To intentionally miss Mass is a mortal sin.

The story would be different if he said that you shouldn’t receive Holy Communion if you have been disrespectful to your parents or intentionally neglect the sick or poor, but as usual, it wasn’t. This isn’t the first time that he said you shouldn’t go to Mass and it likely won’t be the last.

#2
What Are the World Mission Mysteries of the Rosary and Should We Pray Them?

At the time of this article, I had received two separate rosaries in the mail in the last year that were called “World Mission Rosaries” complete with their own separate mysteries. Upon further investigation, it appears that the original intention behind the “World Mission” Rosary is good, as it calls us to pray for different areas of the world with each decade, however, the inclusion of brand new mysteries should be avoided. Thanks to Pope John Paul II for opening up this can of worms.

#1
Novus Ordo Logic: The Latin Mass Is Eh, The Novus Ordo Is Great

It is interesting isn’t it, that whenever you talk about how great the Latin Mass is, many Catholics look at you with pain and go “yeah, well, I don’t understand what’s going on!” But when you start to point out the inconsistencies with the Novus Ordo Mass, you are met with the same responses:
“But it’s the same Eucharist!”
“It’s okay that it’s different between parishes!”
“Different strokes for different folks!”

Hey, liturgical abuse is cool and should be allowed, but if you want any resemblance of reverence, then you gotta go elsewhere.

Top Five Blog Posts Pre-2017

#5
Mortal Sin Against the Third Commandment

I’m not sure why this post is still so popular. I suppose it’s because people are looking for some sense of sanity in what grave sins are against the commandments. It just goes to show that I need to continue to publish more articles on mortal sins.

#4
Mortal Sin Against the Fourth Commandment

Again, further illustrates that people want this.

#3
Why Is Matthew Kelly So Popular?

Matthew Kelly is everywhere in the Church these days. I detail how he became so popular as I used to be a fan(as can be observed in much older posts on this blog). I also point out how Matthew Kelly uses a non-traditional idea of St. Joseph’s life to prove a point which can confuse his book “Rediscover Jesus.”

#2
The Rediscover Catholicism Movement Is Not the Answer

Another article detailing why his material is fluff and should not be avoided.

#1
The Luminous Mysteries and Why You Should Dump Them

Without a doubt my most popular post, I point out how the Luminous mysteries are:

  1. A creation of John Paul II. He says so himself. They are not revealed by Mary. He never attributes them to her. His words, not mine.
  2. Inconsistent with the historical understanding of how the Rosary came to be. Initially, the Rosary was prayed by reciting all 15 decades (Joyful, Sorrowful, Glorious) for a total of 150 Hail Mary’s. These 150 Hail Mary’s is equal to the number of Psalms. Hence it’s nickname of “Our Lady’s Psalter.”
  3. Inconsistent with Our Lady’s messages throughout the years. Our Lady, especially at Fatima, calls us to pray the Rosary daily. If these new mysteries are so essential to our faith, which advocates of these mysteries constantly imply, then why did Mary not give them at an apparition? Again, John Paul II created them himself, he says so.
  4. The idea that “they paint a complete picture of Our Lord’s life” is fallacious. It implies that the Rosary before 2004 was incomplete and that Our Perfect Mother in Heaven gave us something incomplete and imperfect.

I’ve also received the most amount of hate for this article in which I’ve been called a Protestant, incomplete in my conversion to the faith, and so on. A follow-up article is needed.

On a personal note, thank you for sticking around on this blog. I know I don’t update it as often lately as life has been busy and this is a hobby. As always, it’s my goal to write more this year, but I’ll have to see what time allows.

If there is a topic of particular interest to you, please leave a comment below, and I’ll write about it.

May God bless you abundantly this year!

Jeff January 9, 2018 Leave A Comment Permalink

Why Is Matthew Kelly So Popular?

As we continue to celebrate the Christmas season, most of the Catholic blogosphere is discussing Matthew Kelly’s recent book “Rediscover Jesus.” Many parishes across the country gave this book as a gift after all of the Christmas Masses.

Rediscover Jesus

 

However, as Restore-DC-Catholicism points out, there is some bad theology in Kelly’s new book. Matthew Kelly writes quotes on page 99 of “Rediscover Jesus” (See footnote at bottom of page):

Was this some sort of vision, perhaps prompted by the apostles’ grief over their leader’s execution? This wouldn’t explain the dramatic conversion of Saul, an opponent of Christians, or James, the once-skeptical half-brother of Jesus.

The last portion of this paragraph claiming that James is the half-brother of Jesus is especially off. It implies one of two things; either Mary was not a virgin throughout the rest of her life or Joseph had other children.

The issue with Mary not being a virgin is that this is a heresy as we know that Mary’s virginity was perpetual. Mary’s virginity is not even up for debate as the Church declared her perpetual virginity as Dogma. The issue with Joseph having other children is that Catholic tradition holds that he too was a virgin. Even if this tradition was incorrect and Joseph did have other children from a previous marriage, Joseph is not Jesus’ biological father, and thus any children Joseph had would, if anything, be considered stepsiblings to Jesus.

This book has been released for some time now, and Matthew Kelly has not released any clarifications, so it is safe to assume that what he had printed was what he had intended. Rediscover Jesus does not have an imprimatur, unlike some of Matthew Kelly’s other works. The lack of an imprimatur is both good and bad. Good in that, at least, a bishop or cardinal did not sign off on this statement. Bad in that one could argue that Matthew Kelly has grown in such immense popularity that he does not feel the need to submit his books that claim to be in line with Catholic teaching to the proper hierarchical authorities for approval.

With this slip-up, many Catholics are beginning to wonder how Matthew Kelly managed to get his books into so many parishes. Seeing as I was once a Matthew Kelly devotee, but have more or less completely abandoned him as his theology is entirely modernist, I happen to know a bit about his rise to Catholic fame. Everything I am about to say is verifiable in his talks that he had both self-published and had published through Lighthouse Catholic Media.

Matthew Kelly began giving talks when he was 19 years old. He gave many talks and used some of the documents from the Second Vatican Council as the basis for these talks. When talking about the “Universal Call to Holiness” Kelly noticed that most people had checked out, so he began using his trademark “Best Version of Yourself.” People responded positively to this, so he began doing this with various Catholic principles.
He began writing Catholic books, with “The Rhythm of Life” becoming a New York Times bestseller. He even had an odd book called, “Words From God” which was a book on his personal locutions in which he believed God the Father was dictating the book to him. He has since moved away from this book by order of his Bishop. More info on this book can be found on the Women of Grace blog.

What launched Matthew Kelly to become a typical Catholic household name was after Rediscover Catholicism became somewhat well-known.  his organization Dynamic Catholic wanted to come up with a game changer. One of his workers came up with the idea that Catholics of all kinds, practicing and non-practicing always come to Mass on Christmas and Easter. The plan was to give out a free copy of a book to each person. Kelly was reluctant at first because he wanted to give out a copy of Rediscover Catholicism to each family, but his employee convinced him to give out a copy to each family member, as one book for a family might not get read.

They launched this program at a parish in Atlanta, Georgia and had tremendous success. Rediscover Catholicism even managed to bring back people who were Christmas and Easter Mass-goers to weekly Mass-goers. With this success, they came up with a plan to mass produce these books and pass the savings on to parishes. For $2 a copy you can give away these books to your church and make your fellow Catholics become Dynamic Catholics!

After some time and some success giving out copies of “Rediscover Catholicism”, the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, with the blessing of then Archbishop John Nienstedt, partnered with Matthew Kelly and began a “Rediscover” initiative. Talks were given throughout the Archdiocese, “Rediscover Catholicism” book clubs were held in each parish, and once a year there was a “Rediscover Catholic Celebration” where speakers were invited to give lectures. This initiative only lasted for a couple of years, after the second Rediscover Catholic Celebration ended up being a massive flop with only half of the tickets were sold.

“Rediscover Jesus” and “Rediscover Catholicism” are but two of many books which Matthew Kelly has to offer, which Dynamic Catholic mass produces through their private publisher. Priests at parishes can buy the copies themselves with parish funds. Or more likely, a wealthy parishioner who believes that Matthew Kelly’s approach is the best way to get people to become Catholic (I was once one of them, but not anymore) purchases the books themselves without the permission of the priest and their priest now feels obligated to pass them out after the Masses. This has been the case for some priests as witnessed by friends who work for the Church.

By giving out free copies of his book and partnering with Lighthouse Catholic Media, Matthew Kelly has grown to become a Catholic powerhouse and recognized as one of the go-to speakers for Catholic teaching today. Unfortunately, those who believe Matthew Kelly is doing good will see this article as a hit piece. Yes, I am highly critical of Mr. Kelly, but as I have said before, and evidenced throughout older posts on this very blog, I once talked about how great I thought he was.  The argument that Matthew Kelly is “reaching people where they are at” is not applicable here.

Matthew Kelly teaches a very watered down version of Catholicism. It is so watered down that besides words that resemble those found in Catholic teaching; you would not recognize it as Catholic. Authentic Catholic thought resembles Catholicism even when Catholic jargon has been removed. Catholicism is so full of rich nourishment for the soul, that no matter how you broke it down into its simplest of forms you would still be able to reach people where they are at and challenge them. If people’s faith was a fire and Catholicism was a tree that could fuel that fire, Catholicism can be broken down into logs, branches, sticks, leaves, kindling, and twigs to feed that fire. What Matthew Kelly gives is a synthetic fire starter that has been sprayed on several leaves and nothing else.

There are plenty of books that exist on Catholicism, which have been written by some of the greatest minds in Church history. The Baltimore Catechism, True Devotion to Mary, the Catechism of St. Peter Canisius are to name but a few books that will shed more light on Catholicism and Jesus then the Rediscover books can hope to shed. There are plenty of books that are written even for those who are just beginning in their Catholic faith. I encourage you to seek out some of these books and not waste your time with Rediscover; your soul will thank you for it.

FOOTNOTE: I have received an email from Matthew Kelly:

Jeff,
I was disappointed with your article to say the least, but I think it is important to clear up one factual error.
You quote me as writing:
Was this some sort of vision, perhaps prompted by the apostles’ grief over their leader’s execution? This wouldn’t explain the dramatic conversion of Saul, an opponent of Christians, or James, the once-skeptical half-brother of Jesus.
This is not the case, this is part of an entire article that I quote in the book, and the source did not allow edits. The article begins on page 97.
I would appreciate if you would edit your piece to reflect this.
Thank you.
Matthew Kelly

What Matthew Kelly should have done is added a footnote to this error and pointed out what the Catholic teaching is. Footnotes are commonly used when a writer wants to clarify a point and can not do so in the original quotation.

UPDATE: I have received further correspondence from Matthew Kelly. The request for the Imprimatur was submitted late and has taken longer than usual, but he says the next printing will carry an Imprimatur.

Jeff December 28, 2015 17 Comments Permalink

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