General Discussion (6)

confusedIf there’s something of interest in the news that’s not covered in one of the topic threads, or you have a question to ask, a comment you’d like to make about anything under the sun, more or less, this is the thread for you. However, please check first, to ensure that you haven’t missed a topic thread.  Readers have occasionally gone straight to the General Discussion thread to post news that is already the topic of a thread or to ask a question that is already being discussed elsewhere. So, do your Sherlock Holmes before posting here, please and thank you!

Feel free, also, to share your favourite spiritual reading books, prayers and devotions. Whatever.

Enjoy!

To read General Discussion Thread (1) click here (2) click here (3) click here  (4) click here  (5) click here 

Catholic Truth Challenge: Come Debate With Us, Monsignor Loftus …

manreadingI’ve run out of superlatives to describe the awful column penned by Mgr Basil Loftus in the Catholic Times. To say it’s “awful” is akin to saying there’s a bit of unrest in Iraq these days.

The man doesn’t have a Catholic thought in his head and his utter hatred for the authentic Catholic religion is tangible in just about every sentence. He expects to be allowed to get away with his attacks on the Church but won’t tolerate any criticism of himself  –  click on the image in order to read some history of the Monsignor’s (some would say “almost violent”)  reaction to criticism.

Last week, he re-defined Natural Law, to permit (need you ask) artificial contraception, homosexuality, cohabitation, blah blah.  Of course, he didn’t say that he was re-defining Natural Law; he blamed the “Synod Agenda” for the forthcoming Synod on the Family. That’s his modus operandi:  oh, it’s not li’l ole me, saying this, it’s this obscure theologian, or that heretic or … the “Synod Agenda”. 

Anyway, this week he took a swipe at Father Thomas Ladner, the Austrian priest unjustly (and at any other period in Church history, incomprehensibly) punished for teaching the Faith. (See Challenging Young people to live the faith relevant to today’s everyday life, Catholic Times, 15 August, 2014)

In the Gospel according to Basil, the case of Fr Ladner “illustrates how much change was needed in the way the Church approaches religious education for children”  adding “this 36 year old young fogey – who affects an everyday style of clerical dress – shovel hat, cassock and exaggeratedly full Roman collar – which was never in vogue in Austria, where priests wear secular dress – has been suspended by his bishop from teaching religion to children.  Ladner’s ‘out of date terminology’ and an insistence on the starker aspects of the ‘four last things’ – death, judgement, Hell and Heaven – were judged by the diocese concerned to be ‘unsuitable’ for the age group of the children concerned.’ “

To justify this baloney, Loftus (he is on record with his disapproval of titles such as “Monsignor” so forgive me if I indulge him in this respect) cites Pope Paul VI’s “insistence on a ‘re-examination of methods of pedagogy in religious education’, arguing that “Only if religion is taught in the same fresh and inspired way that, for instance, mathematics is taught today, will it be seen to be relevant…”

The problem with this rigid application of contemporary pedagogy is that it ignores the experience of great saints and Doctors of the Church like St Thérèse of Lisieux, who said she had been so well taught about her Faith that by the time she was three years of age, she knew that she loved God and wanted to give her life to Him.

I know we have an almost inexhaustible list of the faithless who might vie for our vote in a “Heretic of the Year” competition, but Loftus really has to be in the lead. His writings have long been suspect but since the election of “Holy Father Francis” his attacks on the Faith have become increasingly bold and more imaginative. Today, he is trying to convince us all that “innovations” are a good thing in the Church: remember that cry of Pope Saint Pius X: “Far, far from our priests be the love of novelty”? Forget it.  Loftus exhorts us to “appreciate such new developments in doctrine as we now have in the fields of ecumenism, and to acknowledge the need to correct previous errors, such as those in Pius XI’s Syllabus of Errors, which have now been rectified by the innovations of Vatican II’s Declaration on Religious Freedom.” He goes on: “Today, moral theology and doctrine are coming together in the wake of the acceptance of evolution and the rehabilitation of Teilhard de Chardin, as theologians look again at what has been taught about the nature and transmission of Original Sin, as well as re-examining the concepts of personal moral responsibility in actual sin.”

Loftus has left us. No question about it.  His hatred of all things traditional and truly Catholic breathes heavily throughout his every column in the Catholic Times, Scottish Catholic Observer and now, I’m told, the Universe. So much for the Catholic papers being a means of spreading the truth. Laugh? I thought I’d never start.

There’s sufficient here already to give a flavour of the extent of Loftus’s faithlessness, which expresses itself very nastily, as for example, when he refers to the sacred vestments as “the kind of diaphanous lace frippery usually seen only on the tea-tables of elderly spinsters…”  And this, under a large picture of priests offering the traditional Latin Mass –  for which, of course, Loftus manifests a particular and diabolical hatred. (see Getting rid of lace garb in the liturgy, Catholic Times: 12 February, 2012)

He’s also on record with his mockery of anything approaching childlike faith; devotions, including Benediction and Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament are belittled in another article.  Here, we read: “In a real sense, too, our spiritual life has to move on from just the Baby Jesus, or indeed any other aspect of Jesus, to the realisation that Christ’s own life is oriented to the Father… [and then] at Pentecost, we have come of age…In Pantomime terms the Holy Spirit has usurped Christ’s role as principal boy in the Church.” (We are Kingdom people growing up in the Faith, Catholic times, 12 June, 2011).

Close to blasphemy you say?  You may be right.  Thing is, there’s no way to express our concerns about Loftus. Letters to the Editor (certainly the ones I’ve written and others that I’ve seen when readers kindly send me copies they’ve submitted) do not get published OR if they ARE published, there’s a rebuttal alongside from Loftus. This is highly unprofessional of the Editor, of course, but that’s the way they’ve decided to deal with anyone who dares to criticise this priest-columnist.  Don’t ask me how much he’s paid for his attacks on the Faith – I won’t speculate except to say it’s too much, far too much, and as he will find out at his Judgement, definitely not worth the consequences of undermining revealed doctrine, God’s natural moral law, and thus creating doubt in souls.

In the absence of any other means of making our concerns known to this priest, therefore, we’ve decided to challenge him to defend his writings in a public debate.  I, moi, will debate with him, and at least one other blogger has agreed to be supporting speaker.  All will be revealed in due course. If, that is, the Monsignor is up to the challenge.  Catholic Truth will host the event, so what do you think – will he? Won’t he?

And we  are willing to extend the challenge to any priest in the UK who would like to defend their decision to make the Catholic papers available for sale in their churches. They are selling poison, damaging the Faith of Catholics who are living at a time of great crisis in the Church and who trust their priests to give them bread, not stones.

So, Monsignor, you first. Will you take up our challenge?

Fathers – any of you willing to debate with us?

Defending the indefensible is tough, right enough  – no question about it. So let’s see if any of them will try.

Pope Francis: There is only one Korea (and one Church, Holy Father…)

PopeFrancisKoreaDaejeon, South Korea, Aug 15, 2014 / 04:50 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Addressing the division between North and South Korea, Pope Francis emphasized that the two are “one family,” calling for prayers of re-unification while stressing repentance and forgiveness. “There is only one Korea, but this family is divided,” the Pope said to a large gathering of young people from across the continent.

His off-the-cuff comments came during an Aug. 15 gathering with youth of Asia at Solmoe Shrine, birthplace of the first Korean-born priest, St. Andrew Kim Taegon, who was martyred in the 1800s. The gathering was part of his Aug. 13-18 visit to South Korea, which coincides with the Sixth Asian Youth Day. After giving prepared remarks in English, Pope Francis told the young people that he wanted to speak to them spontaneously and from the heart.

Encouraged by the eager applause of those present, he set aside his text and began speaking in Italian, with the help of a translator. The Pope encouraged those gathered at the event to pray for their “brothers and sisters in the north,” asking God to guide them to unity, and leaving aside a sense of winners and losers in order to embrace one Korean family. He then paused and invited those gathered spend a moment praying in silence for unity of North and South Korea. Despite the divisions, the pontiff said, “Korea is one family” that speaks the same language.

He pointed to the Biblical account of Joseph in the book of Genesis, observing that the brothers set out to seek food during a time of famine, but instead they find a brother, whom they had earlier sold into slavery. The brothers were linked to Joseph, the Pope observed, by a common language. “Your brothers and sisters in North Korea are speaking the same language, and that gives me hope for the future of the human family,” he said. Pope Francis then discussed the parable of the Prodigal Son, which a group of young people had re-enacted earlier during the gathering. He noted that the prodigal son made the difficult decision to come back and ask forgiveness for all that he had done. The father in the parable, he added, saw the son while he was still a long way off and ran to him, embracing him before he could even apologize. This is the celebration that God loves best of all, when we return home, the Pope said. Although we might make terrible mistakes in our lives, “God will always be waiting for us to return.”

Addressing the priests present, the Holy Father asked that they might be merciful to returning sinners, in imitation of God’s constant desire to embrace us despite our sins.  “We must never be afraid to return to God. And God will celebrate,” he said. “God is never tired of waiting for us. He is never tired of welcoming us back home again.”   Source

Comment

Pope Francis has caused immense scandal since he took office, primarily for his refusal to “sell” Catholicism.  He  attacks those with a remotely “traditional leaning” at just about every opportunity,  and  he recently apologised to Pentecostal Protestants for the refusal of Catholics to help them spread their false beliefs, accusing these bad Catholics of having given in to temptations from the Devil.  It’s beyond farcical.  Now we have him in Korea, unafraid to court controversy by insisting that there is only “one Korea” –  akin to a family divided.  Is he keeping the best wine until last? Will he, one of these fine days, tell the world that there is only one Church, as well as one Korea, and that Church is the Catholic Church? Will he recall that this one Church also has the same language, Latin, the language of the Universal Church, as he was quick to point out that north and south Korea share the same language – a key point of unity? 

Above all, will Pope Francis do his duty and exhort everyone to enter/remain in this one true Church? Will he ask himself whether now is the time to consecrate Russia, as Our Lady requested, in order to achieve world peace, or does he not connect the dots of north and south Korea… Iraq and the slaughter of Christians… the worsening crisis in the Middle East. Planting olive trees seems to have only made things worse over there, so no point in any more speeches or empty symbolism.  Obey your Mother, Holy Father. Or prepare for terrible consequences, both here and hereafter.  

Happy Feast of the Assumption!

As with all Feast Day threads, feel free to offer your favourite prayers, hymns, stories, whatever, to honour Our Lady on this most important Feast Day.

Note: if you would like to attend a Traditional Latin Mass to mark this Holy Day, there is Mass in the SSPX chapel in Renfrew Street, Glasgow at 6.30pm this evening. Or in the Society’s Edinburgh chapel at 12.30pm. All welcome. Scroll down this list for chapel addresses.

Satanic Black Masses & The Scandal of Communion in the Hand…

Communion in handOklahoma City, Okla., Aug 8, 2014 / 04:07 am (CNA/EWTN News).- The purported use of a consecrated Host at a planned satanic black mass at an Oklahoma City civic center would be a “terrible sacrilege” that requires a prayerful response, the local archbishop emphasized. Archbishop Paul Coakley of Oklahoma City in an Aug. 4 message lamented that the city-run Civic Center Music Hall was selling tickets for the event “as if it were merely some sort of dark entertainment.” Rather, he said, the ritual was “deadly serious” and “a blasphemous and obscene inversion of the Catholic Mass.” “Using a consecrated Host obtained illicitly from a Catholic church and desecrating it in the vilest ways imaginable, the practitioners offer it in sacrifice to Satan. This terrible sacrilege is a deliberate attack on the Catholic Mass as well as the foundational beliefs of all Christians,” the archbishop continued.

The occult group Dakhma of Angra Mainyu has scheduled a black mass at the Oklahoma City Civic Center Music Hall Sept. 21. A black mass is a sacrilegious ceremony that invokes Satan and mocks the Mass, involving the desecration of the Eucharist, generally by stealing a consecrated Host from a Catholic church and using it in a profane sexual ritual. The event organizer Adam Daniels said the purported Eucharistic Host was “mailed to us by (a) friend.” “That is all I’m going to say about how it was attained,” he told the Catholic news site Aleteia Aug. 6. “As far as I know, the host mailed to me is consecrated,” he said. Daniels added that the event was intended “to educate the public about my religion.”

Attendance at the event is restricted to those ages 16 and over. The sponsoring group has said the event is modified to comply with laws regarding “nudity, public urination, and other sex acts.” Daniels had attempted to hold a mock exorcism at the same music hall in 2010 as part of a different Satanist group. However, the group expelled him after learning he was a convicted sex offender. In July, an official with the city music hall defended the decision, citing the hall’s neutrality policy. She told CNA that as long as no laws were broken during the event itself, the city hall was not concerned with whether laws may be broken in obtaining a consecrated host ahead of time. She said that similar events scheduled in previous years had poor or no attendance.

Archbishop Coakley said that there are no indications the city intends to prevent the event from taking place. He encouraged Oklahomans to contact the office of Oklahoma City mayor Mick Cornett. “I am especially concerned about the dark powers that this Satanic worship invites into our community and the spiritual danger that this poses to all who are involved in it, directly or indirectly,” the archbishop said. “Since it seems this event will not be cancelled, I am calling on all Catholics of the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City to counteract this challenge to faith and decency through prayer and penance.”

The archbishop has asked that every parish add the well-known prayer to St. Michael the Archangel at the end of every Mass from Aug. 6, the Feast of the Transfiguration, through Sept. 29, the Feast of the Archangels. He has also asked each parish to hold a Holy Hour with Benediction from Aug. 15, the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, through Sept. 21. The archbishop will hold a Holy Hour, an outdoor Eucharistic Procession and Benediction at Oklahoma City’s St. Francis of Assisi Church at 3 p.m. Sept. 21, the same day the satanic event is scheduled to take place. “We will pray to avert this sacrilege and publicly manifest our faith in the Lord and our loving gratitude for the gift of the Holy Eucharist, the source and summit of our lives,” Archbishop Coakley said. Tulsa’s Bishop Edward Slattery and Bishop Carl A. Kemme of Wichita, Kan., have also called on the faithful to respond to the threatened desecration with their prayers.

For its part, the occult group sponsoring the black mass has organized rituals it believes will counter Catholic prayers. A controversy over another purported black mass took place in May 2014, when the Harvard Extension School’s Cultural Studies Club had planned to host a similar event on the Harvard University campus. However, that event was “postponed indefinitely” by the club amid outcry among students and member of the local community. The event reportedly took place off-campus with a small group of individuals instead. Source

Comment

The Archbishop is correct. A black Mass is ” deadly serious” and “a blasphemous and obscene inversion of the Catholic Mass.” “Using a consecrated Host obtained illicitly from a Catholic church and desecrating it in the vilest ways imaginable, the practitioners offer it in sacrifice to Satan. This terrible sacrilege is a deliberate attack on the Catholic Mass as well as the foundational beliefs of all Christians,” the archbishop continued.

What the Archbishop seems to forget, however, is that by permitting Communion in the hand, he is complicit in this obscenity.  The very fact that it is possible for anyone with a mind to, to “obtain [the Blessed Sacrament] illicitly from a Catholic Church”, the very fact that this may happen even once,  should be sufficient to ban Communion in the hand with immediate effect.  Thus, every priest, bishop and pope who permits this liturgical abuse, will be held accountable for the blasphemies which accompany it.

And in case it passes you by, take note of the mischievous photo used by Catholic News Agency – a young girl receiving Holy Communion, on the tongue, wearing a mantilla.  Yip. Just like you see at any parish novus ordo Mass today … NOT.  Is this a deliberate ploy to prevent readers joining up the dots and realising that the widespread liturgical abuse of Communion in the hand places the Blessed Sacrament in great danger of being blasphemed, including (but not exclusively) through being stolen for use in Satanic rituals?  How can any  Catholic participate in such a scandal?

Finally, let’s honour the archbishop’s plea to offer the St Michael prayer daily for the intention of averting this planned blasphemy. Beginning right now… Holy Michael, Archangel, defend us in the day of battle. Be our safeguard against the wickedness and snares of the Devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray, and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly hosts, by the power of God, cast down in to Hell, Satan, and all wicked spirits, who wander through the world for the ruin of souls. Amen. 

Iraq: Impressive Christian Response…

crucifixion2Iraqi militants seized control Thursday of the country’s largest Christian city — reportedly telling its residents to leave, convert or die — while members of another religious minority remained trapped on a mountain without enough food or water, circumstances that fueled calls for the U.S. and U.N. to get more involved.  Read more

Comment

It’s been impressive to see Christians interviewed on TV saying they would not give up their Faith even under threat of death in Iraq. It’s, in a way, little short of amazing to witness this at the present time of deep crisis in the Church.  Your thoughts welcome…  

Sport – Should Catholics Box?

Although I am happy for the young Catholic man who won Gold in the boxing at Boxersthe Commonwealth Games, and I heartily commend him for wearing his Brown Scapular openly for all the world to see, I am of the opinion, expressed on our General Discussion thread, that I really can’t comprehend why any Catholic would want to participate in boxing.

One blogger expressed outrage at the suggestion that boxing may not be a suitable sport for Catholics and asked for a thread to discuss the topic. Happy to oblige.  I haven’t said that boxing should be banned or that the Pope should write an encyclical on the subject but I do stick to my personal view that boxing – it seems to me – is not an obvious first choice of sport for any Catholic.

But if you disagree, feel free to say so.

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