30 November… Feast of St Andrew!

The hymn to St Andrew (lyrics below) will, hopefully, ring out in Catholic churches across Scotland today, and remind us of the need to sincerely pray  the sentiment in the final verse, that Scotland yet again may love the faith, entire and true…

When Christ our Lord to Andrew cried: 
“Come, thou, and follow me,”
the fisher left his net beside the Sea of Galilee.              

 To teach the truth the Master taught,
 to tread the path he trod
 was all his will and thus he brought
 unnumbered souls to God.

When Andrew’s hour had come,
and he 
was doomed, like Christ to die,
 he kissed his cross exultingly,
 and this his noble cry:

“O noble cross! O precious wood!
 I long have yearned for thee;
 uplift me to my only good
 who died on thee for me.”

 The faith that Andrew taught once shone
 o’er all this kingdom fair;
 the cross that Jesus died upon
 was honoured everywhere.

But times once changed and Andrew’s name 
was for a while forgot;
the cross, though set in kingly crown,
became a sign of shame.

St Andrew now in bliss above,
thy fervent prayers renew 
that Scotland yet again may love
the faith, entire and true; 
that I the cross allotted me 

may bear with patient love!
‘Twill lift me, as it lifted thee,
to reign with Christ above.

Comment:

This thread is simply to mark the Feast Day of our national saint, so good wishes, favourite hymns and prayers, videos, even (good, clean) Scotsman jokes are welcome here!  Happy Feast Day everyone!

Is Pope Francis Being Deliberately Provocative?

Pope FrancissmilesIt is hard to escape the conclusion that Pope Francis would like to turn the whole Catholic Church into the pastoral equivalent of the decadent and dying Archdiocese of Buenos Aires, where Catholics — as in all of South America — are defecting to Protestant sects, there are no vocations, and the former Archbishop Bergoglio “authorized ‘curas villeros,’ the priests sent to the peripheries, to give communion to all, although four fifths of the couples were not even married.”

Antonio Socci, who has gone from being a fervent supporter of Pope Francis to one of his leading critics as the evidence of his disastrous pontificate mounts, put the matter this way: “For decades the South American Church has been falling into ruin, its crisis the greatest on the planet: the latest data, just published by the Pew Center, confirming the precipitous drop of membership in the Catholic Church in Latin America.  Now that same recipe for failure is being applied to the whole Church.  And so we soon we will see the same ruins.  The Bergoglio Effect.”

One sign of the spreading decadence provoked by the “Bergoglio Effect” is the Pope’s outrageous personal invitation to Patti Smith, the so-called Godmother of Punk Rock, to perform at this year’s Vatican “Christmas concert.”

Smith, a notoriously pro-abortion “rock star,” is infamous for the “lyric” in her first album, which begins with the lines: “Jesus died for somebody’s sins/but not mine.”  Why on earth did Francis choose this woman to perform at a Vatican concert supposedly in celebration precisely of the birth of the Redeemer? The phrase “diabolical disorientation” comes immediately to mind.

Think Patti Smith has changed her tune? Not at all. As she recently told the press: “Anyone who would confine me to a line from 20 years ago is a fool…. I was 20 and I wanted to make my own mistakes. And I didn’t want anyone dying for me. I stand behind that 20-year-old girl, but I have evolved. I’ll sing to my enemy! I don’t like being pinned down and I’ll say what the f–k I want — especially at my age.”

This is the foul-mouthed, arrogant low-life Pope Francis personally invited to his “Christmas concert.” Now age 67, Smith views the invitation as “I’ll sing to my enemy,” meaning the Church or Christ Himself, although she declares “I like Pope Francis and I’m happy to sing for him.”

Loved by the world — even by a pro-abortion punk rocker — but criticized by a growing number of alarmed members of his own flock. Such is the pontificate of Pope Francis. Even Sandro Magister, not known for extremes, has had enough“Francis’ popularity is more conspicuous outside the Church, even if it isn’t eliciting waves of conversions…. The Christianity from the mouth of Bergoglio is no longer provocative, does not create problems as in the past, it can be treated with courtesy, superiority and detachment.  Christianity matters less.”

Quite simply, there has never been a Pope like this.  The crisis predicted in that part of the Third Secret we have yet to see has clearly entered a new, and perhaps its final phase. Our Lady of Fatima, intercede for us!   Source

Comments invited…

27th November: The Miraculous Medal…

miraculous medalThe Blessed Virgin herself designed the Medal of the Immaculate Conception—popularly known as the Miraculous Medal! No wonder, then, that it wins such extraordinary graces for those who wear it and pray for Mary’s intercession and help.

The First Apparition

The story begins on the night of July 18-19, 1830. A child (perhaps her guardian angel) awakened Sister (now Saint) Catherine Labouré, a novice in the community of the Daughters of Charity in Paris, and summoned her to the chapel. There she met with the Virgin Mary and spoke with her for several hours. During the conversation, Mary said to her, “My child, I am going to give you a mission.”

The Second Apparition   Mary gave her this mission in a vision during evening meditation on November 27, 1830. She saw Mary standing on what seemed to be half a globe and holding a golden globe in her hands as if offering it to heaven. On the globe was the word “France,” and our Lady explained that the globe represented the whole world, but especially France. The times were difficult in France, especially for the poor who were unemployed and often refugees from the many wars of the time. France was first to experience many of those troubles which ultimately reached other parts of the world and are even present today. Streaming from rings on Mary’s fingers as she held the globe were many rays of light. Mary explained that the rays symbolize the graces she obtains for those who ask for them. However, some of the gems on the rings were dark, and Mary explained that the rays and graces were available but did not come because no one had asked for them. The Third Apparition and the Miraculous Medal

The vision then changed to show our Lady standing on a globe with her arms now outstretched and with the dazzling rays of light still streaming from her fingers. Framing the figure was an inscription: O Mary conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee.  Source

Comment

Share your stories about the graces you – or others – have received through wearing the Miraculous Medal.  Miracles, great and small, granted via the Medal are of much interest.  I’ve heard stories of people planting a Miraculous Medal in a house (garden, specifically) in the hope of being successful in purchasing or renting – and being successful! So, share your stories or ask questions – whatever. Let’s pay tribute to this wonderful sacramental. O Mary conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee…

Coming Soon: “Paedophile Rights” ?

animatedchildrenplayingChannel 4 will screen a controversial documentary tonight in which a paedophile speaks openly about his attraction to four-year-old girls.

The broadcaster has been criticised by victim support campaigners for giving airtime to the 39-year-old man, called Eddie, and encouraging him to discuss his urges. Read more

Comment

I was alerted to a discussion this morning on the Wright Stuff, Channel 5 Talk  (Nonsense) Show on the subject of the above Channel 4 documentary. The Wright Stuff is a programme I studiously avoid for a number of reasons, not least because it is so predictable and so politically correct that I’ve never viewed one of their “discussions” without yawning.  This discussion was useful, though, because it demonstrates the need for what Lenin termed the “useful idiots” to get revolutions off the ground.  Playing the part of the Devil’s Advocate, Matthew Wright made the case for Paedophile Rights when the majority (if not all) of the members of the public who rang in to comment proved to be opposed to the screening of the Channel 4 documentary.

Bending over backwards to appear open-minded  Wright, wearing his Devil’s Advocate hat,  pushed the callers  to answer questions such as  “[but] do you know any paedophiles?” and “where  do you get your information about paedophiles from?” – that sort of thing. He wouldn’t have heard me, of course, but I shouted at the TV screen: “No, but then I didn’t know any homosexuals either until they started coming out of the woodwork thanks to the media presenting them as victims” and “I get my information about paedophiles from the same place that I get information about other undesirables – then they become “approved” and they’re not undesirables any more, you silly man”.

Is this documentary – as portrayed – simply so that we can view the problem differently, find ways to help these poor individuals overcome their disordered sexual attraction to children? Or are the useful idiots in the television industry pawns in the campaign for paedophile rights?  Present the nice guy, explain that he just can’t help it, maybe he was born that way and maybe this is yet another taboo we need to shed, just as “society” is no longer shocked at same sex couplings or even men having operations to become women and women becoming men.  If they’re born that way and can’t help it, society shouldn’t make “victims” of them, surely?

As Catholics, do we have something specific to contribute to the issues surrounding the screening of this Channel 4 documentary?  Comments invited. 

Will The New Bishop of Galloway “Embrace Change”?

mitreThe latest  press release from the Scottish Catholic Media Office (SCMO) reports the news of Pope Francis’ appointment of the new Bishop of Galloway.  Below is a particularly interesting extract:

“Commenting on the appointment, Fr. William McFadden, Vicar General of the diocese, said: “On behalf of the priests of the diocese I welcome the appointment of Fr Nolan, and can assure him that the clergy of Galloway will support him in every way. We are aware of the demands that await him, particularly in the process of Embracing Change, but he can be sure that there is enormous goodwill and a real commitment to collaborative ministry awaiting him. I would also like to take the opportunity to express the gratitude of the priests of the diocese to Bishop Cunningham for his ministry as bishop, and to wish him well in his retirement.”  End of Extract

“Embracing Change” got me Googling and while – curiously – there appears to be no mention of this project on the Diocesan website, there is here

Fr McFadden is a former Rector of Scotus Seminary, which closed on his “liberal” watch.  He  has featured prominently in our newsletter over the years, and there is no question about his agenda.  So, it’s not surprising that his welcome to his new bishop is far from being unqualified. If the Bishop pursues Fr McFadden’s agenda, and “embraces change” he’ll be welcome in Galloway.   That’s how I read it.  Interesting times ahead in that neck of the woods.  Let’s hope and pray that the new Bishop is not of the same  “liberal” mindset as his Vicar-General.  That, frankly, would be the nail in the coffin of the Diocese of Galloway which has been in meltdown for years. It goes without saying that we wish the new Bishop every grace and blessing in his appointment to a diocese which a Galloway priest once told me was/is  the most sterile spiritual soil in Scotland, second only to the Diocese of Aberdeen for it’s impoverished Catholicity.

Comments invited 

Perspective: Vatican II in Retrospect…

VaticanII1962St. Pius X said at the beginning of the twentieth century that the main cause of the loss of souls was religious ignorance, ignorance of the truths of the faith. Sadly, this ignorance is everywhere in the Church today and it is getting worse as the decline in priests and sound Catechetics continues pace.

One of the principal errors to have arisen from this ignorance in our times is the belief, in thought if not by open declaration, that the pope is not just sometimes infallible but rather at all times impeccable.

Therefore, no matter what the pope says or does in the exercise of his ordinary magisterium it is incumbent upon all to blindly obey him. A similarly erroneous thought is held with regard to the bishops.

How far this mistaken belief is from the teaching of the Church, however, is exemplified by St. Paul in Galatians 2: 11-13, who recounts how he “withstood Peter to his face because he was to be blamed.”

 The above extract is taken from an article on Vatican II entitled: Fiddling While Rome Burns: Vatican II in Retrospect, by Martin Blackshaw, aka Catholic Truth blogger Athanasius, and was originally published in the March/April 2014 edition of  The Angelus.   It is re-printed here by kind permission of the Editor.  Martin’s article is quite lengthy but bloggers are encouraged to take the necessary time to check it out before sharing your thoughts.  Comments invited.

Crisis: Would YOU Encourage A Young Person to be a Priest or Religious?

“Come, Follow Me.”

“GOOD MASTER, what good shall I do that I may have life everlasting?”  It was the eager question of one whom fortune had blessed with the Richyoungmanwealth of this world, but who realised that life eternal was a far more precious treasure.  He had come to the Divine Teacher, seeking what he must yet do to make secure the great prize for which he was striving.  He was young and wealthy, a ruler in the land, one whose life had been without stain or blemish.

“The Commandments? – All these I have kept from my youth,” he had said; “Good Master, what is yet wanting to me?”

Jesus looked on him with love, for such a soul was dear to His Sacred Heart. “ If thou wilt be perfect,” comes the answer, “go sell what thou hast and give to the poor, and come, follow Me.”

There was a painful pause: nature and grace were struggling for the mastery; the invitation had been given, the road to perfection pointed out. There was only one sacrifice needed to make him a true disciple, but it was a big one, too great for him who lately seemed so generous.  He hesitates, wavers, and then sadly turns away, with the words “Come, follow Me,” ringing in his ears, for love of his “great possessions” had wrapped itself round his heart – a Vocation had been offered and refused. “What a cloud of misgivings,” says Father Faber, “must hang over the memory of him whom Jesus invited to follow Him.  Is he looking now in heaven upon that Face from whose mild beauty he so sadly turned away on earth?”

Nearly two thousand years have passed since then, but unceasingly that same Voice has been whispering in the ears of many a lad and maiden, “One thing is yet wanting to you – come, follow Me.”  Some have heard that voice with joy and gladness of heart, and have risen up at the Master’s call; others have stop their ears, or turned away in fear from the side of Him Who beckoned to them, while not a few have stood and listened, wondering what it meant, asking themselves could such an invitation be for them, till Jesus of Nazareth passed by and they were left behind for ever.

To these, chiefly, is this simple explanation of a Vocation offered, in the hope that they may recognize the workings of grace within their souls, or be moved to beg that they may one day be sharers in this crowning gift of God’s eternal love.   Click here to read more from the writings of Fr Doyle SJ  on vocations…

Comment:

I’ve found myself in a number of conversations in recent years, where I’ve been asked whether or not, despite the crisis in the Church, I would encourage young people to try their vocations to the priesthood and religious life.  I’m always torn between saying that I would encourage them – although afraid that I may, thus, find myself an instrument of setting them on a road where they may  lose the Faith – or saying that I would discourage them  – and perhaps, therefore, be the cause of blocking God’s work in a soul. Quite a dilemma.

Some people think there’s no dilemma –  just suggest that they enter traditional seminaries and Orders. Then others again point out the possible danger of a certain extremism in those quarters.  So, what’s the answer. Would YOU encourage a boy who is thinking of the priesthood, to go ahead – and if so, details please! Or a young person who might feel called to the Religious Life; what would you suggest is the safest route for them to try their vocation, if you think they ought to do so.

Read Father Doyle’s short work and then share your thoughts on this important subject.