30 March: The Big Questions Live From Glasgow on BBC 2 – Don’t Miss It!

The Big Questions, a religious, ethical and topical debating programme usually aired on BBC 1 TV on Sundays at 10.am from various locations across the UK, is live from Glasgow this week on BBC 2 due to a sports event on BBC 1.  If you miss the live broadcast, you can view online hereImage

Then share your thoughts on the topics – emergency contraception, democracy and the end times. Since we’ve already discussed the end times on another thread very recently, feel free to give that one a miss…

USA Priest: Canon 915 Mandatory & Failure to Apply, Mortally Sinful

To read the source of the following article, click on the image. All emphases in the original.

A Father Vincent Fitzpatrick, of whom I am totally unfamiliar, has penned a piece for the American Life League that castigates all that great swath of bishops in this country who, for more than 40 years, have refused to enforce Canon 915 by denying the Blessed Sacrament to sinful pro-abort politicians.  According to Fr. Fitzpatrick, enforcement of Canon 915 is not just a duty, it is not an option, it is so mandatory that failing to do so is gravely sinful.

ImageFr. Fitzpatrick (I add emphasis): Here is the text of Canon 915: “Those who have been excommunicated or interdicted after the imposition or declaration of the penalty and others obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to Holy Communion.”

Several American bishops have made statements to the effect that a bishop must exercise “discretion” regarding whether to “impose the penalty” of denial of Communion. Among them: Chaput, Dolan, O’Malley, and Wuerl.

All bishops who refuse to “impose the penalty” are participating in a lie. Namely, that denial of Communion is a penalty.

Denial of Communion is NOT a penalty.

So? What is the import of this fact?

It means that denial of Communion is not an option that MAY be chosen. It is MANDATED by Canon 915. No bishop, priest, or other minister of Communion is free to disobey Canon 915, for the simple reason that the action Canon 915 forbids is ALWAYS gravely sinful.

It needs to be emphasized that Canon 915 is NOT a canon that may be “applied” or “not applied.” Canon 915 can only be obeyed or disobeyed. And disobeying Canon 915 is always gravely sinful.

Canon 915 exists precisely because giving Communion to a person “obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin” is always gravely sinful. Doing so is always to give grave scandal, and to participate knowingly in a sacrilegious act.

Let that sink in. Always gravely sinful.

In terms perhaps more familiar to the laity: To give Communion knowingly and deliberately to ANYONE delineated in Canon 915 is ALWAYS a mortal sin.

Cardinal Donald Wuerl has been the most outspoken of those bishops who refuse to obey Canon 915, but all of them are on record, as he is, as endorsing the commission of MORTAL SINS by their priests and other ministers of Communion. Cardinal Wuerl has even punished those who have obeyed Canon 915.

Of course, this is something he has no right to do, because no bishop has the authority to command anyone to commit a mortal sin!

I believe he is absolutely correct in this.  Canon Law is Canon Law, and Canon 915 is crystal clear.  For a prelate to so fail in duty that he abrogates a very significant portion of Canon Law is objectively mortally sinful if only from the standpoint of the massive scandal it causes alone.  But add to that fact the reality that the Blessed Sacrament is thus received unworthily, and you add sacrilege and blasphemy on top of the grave scandal.  It seems a pretty clear cut case of objective mortal sin, to me.

Unless one wants to argue that our prelates are so badly formed they are ignorant of the nature of the Blessed Sacrament, scandal, sacrilege, and all the rest.  One might actually have an argument there, which is a scandal of the first rank in its own right.

But really, these men have been corrected so often on this matter, from above and below (including the relegating of then Cardinal Ratzinger’s instruction to enforce Canon 915 by Cardinal McCarrick to the memory hole), that claiming ignorance is to extend a charitable appreciation of the matter beyond the breaking point.

One more point from Fr. Fitzpatrick:

It is said by many, including Cardinal Wuerl, that Communion should not be used as a political weapon.

Absolutely true. And  the reception of Communion is being used as a political weapon—by pro-abortion politicians. As long as they are permitted to receive Communion, the bishop (e.g., Cardinal Wuerl) endorses their claim to be “ardent Catholics” whose promotion of abortion is NO SIN.

Again, I totally agree.  There is no question in my mind that it is the pro-abort sinners and their episcopal enablers who are politicizing the Blessed Sacrament.  They are also committing sins more severe than even the worst heretics of the past.

One sad fact is that the article lists Fr. Fitzpatrick as a retired priest.  Of course, no active priest could write a missive like this because they would be cashiered instantly Source


We’ve had this discussion before, of course, regarding the negligence of priests and bishops who refuse to enforce Canon 915. However, since the “chestnut” moral issues persistently present themselves as a challenge to the clergy and hierarchy, seemingly intent on keeping their heads buried firmly in the sand, it might be useful to give the subject another airing. Is Fr Fitzpatrick right in his claim that “pro-abort sinners and [the bishops] who enable them, are committing sins more severe than even the worst heretics of the past”? And what about “To give Communion knowingly and deliberately to ANYONE delineated in Canon 915 is ALWAYS a mortal sin.” – who are they… those (apart from pro-abortion Catholics) “delineated in Canon 915”?

And The Greatest Of These Is Charity…

“Let us consider the Eighth Commandment, not least within the context of today’s digital age. The Ten Commandments make explicit the natural law written into every human heart. They tell us to love God (Commandments One to Three) and to love our neighbour (Commandments Four to Ten). The Eighth Commandment says this: “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour.”9 In other words, we must exercise discretion, respect others and their privacy, and not engage in slander, gossip and rash judgment. We must avoid calumny, that is, slurring and damaging people, and not spread abroad their sins and failings. 10 How do I use Facebook or Twitter? Am I charitable when blogging? Do I revel in other people’s failings? All this is grave matter. Yet when we think of our news media and TV, in which fallen celebrities are pilloried, reputations shredded and people’s sins exposed, it sometimes seems our popular culture thrives on breaking this Commandment.”  Click on photo of Bishop Egan to read his Lenten Pastoral Letter in full.

And then, focusing on his remarks about social media, we might consider whether or not blogging – by its nature –  leads to lack of charity, and hence to sin against the eighth commandment. Share your practical tips on how to avoid lack of charity in blogging…


Are We Living In The End Times?

A number of correspondents and friends in conversation have recently raised the question of whether or not we are actually living in the end times. It seems obvious to me that we are, indeed, living in the end times (whether “the end” is next week, next year or a hundred years from now) so, but for these recent communications, I wouldn’t even think of posting a thread on the topic – it’s something to which we refer often in other discussions.

Then I received an email today containing a link to the Channel 4 documentary Secrets of the Vatican with a request to post a thread on the subject. However, I’ve only had time to watch the beginning of the film, and be warned, it is not pleasant at all. It’s not really necessary to watch it in order to participate in this discussion so my gut instinct is to say “don’t bother” – it’s all about the “filth in the Church” lamented by Pope Benedict. If you choose to watch it, say a prayer first, and then click on the picture of Christ the King to view.

Spiritual blindness is definitely one of the signs of the end times – see 2 Timothy 4:3-4 (“The time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine… and will turn away from the truth…”)

The key discussion point for this thread, then, is this: are all the signs of the end times (of which Scripture warns) evident in the world today? Personally, I think they are, with bells on. What do you think?

Aborted Babies Used To Heat Hospitals

Aborted Babies Used To Heat Hospitals

The bodies of thousands of aborted and miscarried babies were incinerated as clinical waste, with some even used to heat hospitals, an investigation has found.

Ten NHS trusts have admitted burning foetal remains alongside other rubbish while two others used the bodies in ‘waste-to-energy’ plants which generate power for heat.


Click on picture to read entire Telegraph report. Then tell us if you agree with the Telegraph blogger who argues that “It is abortion itself that needs to be debated, not the method used to dispose of the remains.”

Game, set and match, I say. What do you say?

The Prophecies of Sister Elena Aliello…

ImageGOOD FRIDAY — 1961

The Sorrowful Madonna speaks: “People pay no attention to my motherly warnings, and thus the world is falling headlong evermore into an abyss of iniquity. Nations shall be convulsed by terrible disasters, causing destruction and death.

“Russia, spurred on by Satan, will seek to dominate the whole world and, by bloody revolutions, will propagate her false teachings throughout all the nations, especially in Italy. The Church will be persecuted and the Pope and the priests shall suffer much.”

Sister Elena Aiello speaks: “Oh, what a horrible vision I see! A great revolution is going on in Rome! They are entering the Vatican. The Pope is all alone; he is praying. They are holding the Pope. They take him by force. They knock him down to the floor. They are tying him. Oh, God! Oh God! They are kicking him. What a horrible scene! How dreadful!”

“Our Blessed Mother is drawing near. Like corpses those evil men fall down to the floor. Our Lady helps the Pope to his feet and, taking him by the arm, she covers him with her mantle saying: ‘Fear not!’

“Flagstaffs (flying the Red flag over St. Peter’s dome and elsewhere) collapse, and power is gone out of the clubs of those evil brutes. These atheists are ever shouting: ‘We don’t want God to rule over us; we want Satan to be our master!’

Our Blessed Mother speaks again: “My daughter, Rome will not be saved, because the Italian rulers have forsaken the Divine Light and because only a few people really love the Church. But the day is not far off when all the wicked shall perish, under the tremendous blows of Divine Justice.” 


In April 2011, Pope Benedict XVI approved the petition allowing for the Beatification of Venerable Elena Aiello. She was declared Blessed on September 14, 2011 (Feast of the Exaultation of the Holy Cross) at 17.30 in Piazza dei Bruzi in Cosenza, Italy. The proclamation of the Blessed was made by Cardinal Angelo Amato, prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, along with Archbishop of Cosenza/Bisignano, His Excellency Salvatore Source – click to read entire article.


Are these prophecies, which are so clearly complementary to the Fatima prophecies, coming true before our very eyes?

Majority of Irish Catholics Reject Teaching on Marriage & Family…

ImageIrish bishops’ release of survey findings reveals gulf between church teaching and Catholics’ real-life experience.
19 March 2014 12:03 by Sarah Mac Donald

The Church’s teaching on marriage and family life is disconnected from the real-life experience of many Irish Catholics, the country’s bishops have acknowledged.

Giving a summary of the responses to the Vatican questionnaire, the Irish Bishops Conference said it is not experienced by many Catholics as “realistic, compassionate or life-enhancing”.

Many respondents expressed “particular difficulties” with the teachings on extra-marital sex and cohabitation by unmarried couples, divorce and remarriage, family planning, assisted human reproduction and homosexuality. Some found the Church’s position on these issues left them feeling “guilty and excluded,” the bishops said.

The leadership of the Association of Catholic Priests (ACP) welcomed the bishops’ decision to release the summary, saying if people are asked for their opinion, it is important that the results be made known.

The group said it was “now beyond dispute” that there was a serious gap or disconnect between official church teaching on family, relationships and sexuality and Catholics’ beliefs and practice. It suggested that the laity, clergy and bishops should come together and search for ways for bridge this gap.

The bishops underlining that they had a responsibility to present the Church’s teaching on marriage and the family faithfully and in a positive and engaging way. But they admitted it must be done in a way that showed compassion and mercy towards those finding it difficult to accept or live the teachings.

Respondents to the survey also cited “immense challenges” for families in Ireland arising out of severe financial hardship, unemployment and emigration. Other difficulties identified were domestic violence, infidelity, neglect and other forms of abuse, as well as the constant pressures on “family time”. Some respondents also expressed concern about the limited amount of state support for marriage and the family.

The ACP, which represents over 1,000 Irish priests, also noted the similarity between the responses received by the 26 dioceses in Ireland and the 1,562 responses received by the ACP through its website. The group said these mirrored the results which had been published elsewhere around the world.  Source


Why is a blatantly dissident organisation like the ACP calling the shots here? We all know what they mean by their suggestion that ” laity, clergy and bishops should come together and search for ways for bridge this gap” – they mean the Church must change her teaching.

Wrong. The clergy and bishops should certainly get together with the dissenting laity but only to give them their marching orders. If they reject the teaching of the Church and God’s natural moral order, then they’re about as Catholic as Stephen Hawking. Or am I lacking “compassion” and “mercy” again?

Happy Feast of St Joseph! 


This thread is simply to pay tribute to St Joseph – to exchange Feast day greetings and to share favourite prayers, hymns, novenas and other devotions if you wish.

Click on the picture to reach a lovely site devoted to St Joseph and make sure you read the two quotes from great saints who were devoted to St Joseph in their lifetime, on our own website.

Anyone who would like to attend a Traditional Latin Mass to mark the Feast will be pleased to know there is a Mass in St Andrew’s SSPX chapel in Glasgow this evening at 6.30pm. Directions here and in Edinburgh this afternoon at 1pm – click here for chapel details

Happy Feast Day to one and all!

The Mystery of the Missing Malaysian Airplane – And Other Mysteries…

ImageThe mystery of the missing plane is exercising the media like nothing else has done for quite some time. Constant news updates reveal that every imaginable line of enquiry is apparently being followed. 

One aviation  expert told callers to a  popular radio phone-in show this week that even far-fetched possibilities, dismissed at the beginning, are now being considered  Nobody knows anything, and so all sorts of possible, if unlikely, explanations are being examined by the experts.

The media is working hard, endlessly interviewing the various experts in aviation technology, with commentary wall to wall round the clock, and  newspaper reporters and TV presenters are pointing to maps and other images galore, all carefully explained for maximum audience comprehension. Calls to mind Our Lord’s observation that “…the children of this world are wiser in their generation than the children of light.”

For, if Catholics spent half the amount of time, energy and imagination on working to explain the great mysteries of our Faith as the news-researchers and chat show hosts are doing to explain the mystery of the missing Malaysian flight MH370, the world would be converted in no time.

As you may have guessed by now, this is a corny way to introduce a thread of discussion on atheism and agnosticism. A discussion with a difference because the key question is not “how can we prove to unbelievers that God  really exists?” but, rather, do atheists and agnostics really exist?  Take a look at the photo of the rescue workers at prayer at Kuala Lumpur airport.  Is there anyone who hasn’t uttered a prayer for the passengers, crew, and relatives of all those on board missing flight MH370?

In short – if there really are unbelievers and agnostics in the world today, isn’t this a greater mystery than the mystery of the missing plane? Greater, even, than any mystery of our Faith?

Happy St Patrick’s Day!

Happy St Patrick's Day!

Click on the picture to read a very interesting report about St Patrick’s (non-inclusive) day of celebrations in New York. Not for the politically correct, I ought to add…

Nor, of course, are “Irish jokes” but as long as they’re not crude and involve only silliness which could apply equally to English, Scots, Welsh, Americans, you name it, they may be posted here for fun today. In my experience of Irish relatives and friends, they are not regarded as “racist” by normal, well-balanced, fun-loving Irish folk – like the ones who blog here!

My own favourite is the story of the man acquitted of a crime who was told by the Judge: “you have been found “not guilty” by a Limerick jury and so you may leave this court today without any other stain on your character.”

You have to laugh… Don’t you?