American Layman to “Reboot the faith” in the [Dying] Archdiocese of Glasgow…

One of the world’s top Catholic speakers is coming to Glasgow – with a mission to reboot the Catholic faith of the Archdiocese.

Chris Stefanick is currently selling out events across America in his ministry which presents the Catholic faith in all its beauty, power and truth in an engaging and uplifting way.

He has worked for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops in the areas of marriage and family life, laity, and youth. This month he brings Reboot Live to Glasgow.
Glasgow University’s historic Bute Hall has been booked for Thursday July 27 for the event and organisers are hoping for a sellout.

Fr Joe Lappin, Director of Religious Education for the Archdiocese, who has been instrumental in bringing Chris Stefanick to Scotland said: “Reboot Live will be like no ordinary Church event. Chris’s dynamic presentation will bring people to tears, to laughter, and most importantly, to Christ. He presents the Gospel in all its beauty to a world much in need of the joy only Jesus can bring.

“It’s like hearing the Gospel for the first time. We all need a ‘faith boost’ from time to time. This is like no other faith event you’ve ever been to. We hope those who come along will reach out to their family and friends who have fallen away from the faith, who have lost touch with the Lord and His Church and invite them to come home.”

One attendee at a recent event said: “We can’t believe it. We had a man at the event last week who hasn’t been to Church in 50 years. I saw him at Mass yesterday. He told me he is so grateful for the event because it finally opened his heart to God. He just needed an invitation to the right thing. We haven’t felt this joy-filled leaving the church in a very long time.”

Fr Lappin said: “I became aware of Chris Stefanick through his website: www.reallifecatholic.com. It contains some great resources that we use with teachers and we recommend them to make use of his material in the classroom. Of particular help are his short videos which can be informative, instructional and inspirational.

The event in Glasgow can only be described as guided by the Holy Spirit. On the spur of the moment I contacted Chris by email to explore the possibility of him coming over to do some youth, teacher and parish events. In the meantime, he was planning to come to Britain on holiday with his family this summer.”

Chris Stefanick said: “One evening I was praying about going to the United Kingdom and whether to break the family holiday with some ministry work. I asked the Lord about getting to Scotland – if I was going to England, how could I reach out and present the beautiful message of the Gospel in Scotland? I left it with the Lord, went to bed and when I got up the next morning Fr Joe’s email was waiting for me with an invitation to Glasgow.”

Since that initial contact, a great team of volunteers has offered time and talents to organise the event and presentations have been made to the priests of the Archdiocese, the Head Teachers and many of the school staff to promote the event.

Archbishop Tartaglia said: “When I was in Philadelphia recently I was struck by the Archbishop of that city – Archbishop Charles Chaput’s view of the Reboot phenomenon. He said to me, ‘Chris Stefanick is recognised as one of the most creative ministers to youth and young adults in the United States. He has extended his ministry to parish communities as well. He brings deep personal faith and an exciting energy to the Reboot programme. Chris Stefanick practises what he preaches. And what he preaches is exciting and Catholic.’ With a recommendation like that I think we are in for a great event in Glasgow.”  Source – Flourish

Comment:

When a fellow parishioner handed me a copy of Flourish, this morning, the official publication of the Archdiocese of Glasgow, I groaned.  When  I saw the headline: “Reboot the faith” and read the above article, I groaned again.  “One more gimmick to add to the list.” I thought. I then watched a couple of the videos, and realised that the young man, Chris Stefanick, whom I initially and very uncharitably dubbed “the new Michael Voris”,  appears to be a very well-meaning person, who loves the Faith.  My next thought was, “But, wait: is the Faith which he loves, the one, holy, Catholic and apostolic faith as it has been handed down to us from the apostles, or is it the changed faith that has come down to us from the Fathers of Vatican II?”  So, I went in search of a video talk on the Mass and found the video below.

I’m not quite sure why, but it seems to me – I have a kind of sense, albeit having only watched it once – that Chris is a step away from the Traditional Latin Mass, if he’s not there already, but then, is it remotely likely that a TLM attending Catholic would be invited to “reboot the faith” in the highly modernist archdiocese of Glasgow?  You tell me!

32 responses

  1. I have just emailed Chris, to send him the link to our website, so that he can keep an eye on the voting poll and blog. I have also invited him to contribute to this thread, and expressed a warm welcome to him, if he chooses to do so.

  2. Call me old-fashioned if you will, but I preferred it when priests, usually Religious like Passionist Fathers or Redemptorists, led parish missions and we could go to them for Confession. They preached hell-fire and really made us think about eternal life and eternal death. Somehow, I can’t see these lay ministries having the same effect, especially if the layman is making his living out of his “ministry”. I don’t think it would go down too well if a fellow layman lectured us about our sinful ways! That could definitely affect his pay packet!

    He does seem to be a very nice young man, however. I just wouldn’t attend anything like that. Not my cup of tea (or should that be “coffee”?! LOL!)

    • Michaela

      Absolutely right! It is for the clergy to lead missions to rekindle the Faith on this scale. I’m not knocking the layman who is trying to make up for the failings of the clergy, just saying that it’s back to front.

  3. I am not sure what he thinks about Mass because he doesn’t mention either novus ordo or traditional Latin Mass, just that Catholics died for the Mass. If he’d added “not this new Mass” that might be different, but I can’t see that he looks much like a traditional Catholic, from that video and the rest is all quite the Protestant “Gospel” message, if you know what I mean.

    • MM

      I agree. Lots of talk about the “Gospel”, with any Catholic “bits” presented but in no depth.

      That makes perfect sense, of course, because treating of Catholicism in any depth leads straight to Catholic Tradition. And that would go down like the proverbial lead balloon in the Archdiocese of Glasgow, sadly.

  4. I agree with Margaret Mary regarding his “Protestant” (or is it charismatic?) (well, same difference) enthusiasm – born-again Protestantism, at that. At least he mentions “Mass” as often as “Gospel.” Love of the Church and love of Truth is replaced by a shallow emotional enthusiasm, which is a sentiment, not love. The Apostles, Fathers and Doctors of the Church didn’t spread the Faith around the world with emotion, I guarantee you that.

    I also looked around his website, and there isn’t much there – except enthusiasm. He does seem like a very sincere young man, though he reminds me very much of Christopher West, the young fellow who used to travel the globe promoting JPII’s “Theology of the Body” baloney.

    (Speaking of Abp. Chaput, he was on the board of C. West’s organization!)

    The whole thing is a little too glib and two-dimensional for my taste, including his readiness to attribute events to the Holy Spirit, but while he’s “re-booting” the Church in Scotland, perhaps he can get the Holy Spirit to re-boot the Papacy!

    It would be most interesting to find out if he recognizes the history and cause of the crisis in the Church, or whether he even understands said crisis…..beyond the failure to attend Mass or pay attention at Mass…..

    • RCA Victor,

      I’m going to pass on the Christopher West video – I find the whole “Theology of the Body” baloney just that – baloney, and life’s too short to waste on baloney.

      I think your “perhaps he can get the Holy Spirit to re-boot the Papacy” is hilarious. If only!

  5. I am not keen on these lay led showbiz type events, or even the same type of thing led by a priest. I think they work on the emotions, not the soul. They probably whip up the crowds, as in a Billy Graham meeting, but then, when the razzamataz dies down, and the emotions have calmed down, what is left?

    It could be a way of kick-starting young people in the faith, though – that’s possible. Whether there is any depth to the experience of individuals, is another matter.

    • Lionel,

      I think you mean the video I posted in the blog introduction (the Eucharistic procession) – not Christopher West on the Theology of the Body which RCA Victor posted just to remind us of a similar lay enterprise.

      Yes, the Eucharistic procession was beautiful. However, it seems to have been used by Chris Stefanick to avoid being associated with a particular Mass. Notice, he does not make any distinction between the traditional and the new Mass. He uses a Eucharistic procession to speak, generally, about “the Mass”.

      Anyway, he’s sure to read this thread – I sent him the link – so, he is free to clarify that for us. I’m not really in any doubt that he is a novus ordo Catholic – otherwise, Archbishop Tartaglia wouldn’t have him anywhere near the youth in Glasgow. He thinks anyone under 100 years of age who shows any interest in the TLM is guilty of an “affectation”. That’s the accusation he levelled at Petrus when he wrote to ask if a TLM would be provided when Pope Benedict’s Motu Proprio, Summorum Pontificum first released the old Mass to be offered by any priest, without reference to his bishop.

      • Editor,

        That Papal Eucharistic Procession in the video was problematic in some respect, but I can’t remember what, or where I read about it – only that the Pope’s behavior was, typically, un-Catholic. Am I helpful, or what?

        • RCA Victor,

          I didn’t even realise the Pope was there! I thought it was a parish procession somewhere in your neck of the woods (USA) – I must watch it again. I can’t go about the place not noticing the Pope when he’s there, now, can I ? I know there are folks who don’t actually think he IS the Pope but at least they see him! What am I LIKE?! (say nothing.)

  6. That’s the impression I got, as well, that the young man (Chris Stefanick) used the Eucharistic Procession as a cover for not mentioning the Mass controversy. It would be interesting to see if any questions were raised on this at the event, and what sort of answers Mr Stefanick gives. I must ask around to see if I know anyone who will attend it.

    • Lily,

      I was looking for something else on an old thread, and came across the following statement from the Vatican about the novus ordo – I couldn’t resist copying it to publish here, since repetition is the mother of education, and it would be good for Chris Stefanick to understand, before he arrives in Glasgow, that, when asked the direct question by a Bishop in Latin America, even the powers-that-be in the Vatican refused to affirm that the new Mass is wholly orthodox and pleasing to God…

      FROM PREVIOUS DISCUSSION THREAD…

      The new Mass is “licit” only in a very limited way. I have published, more than once, the Vatican’s own response to two dubia (doubts) submitted by a bishop in South America on behalf of a layman there, asking this very question about legitimacy.

      He asked two questions:

      (1) is the new Mass “legitimate” in the sense that it is permitted by the Church or

      (2) is it “legitimate” because it is neither doctrinally unorthodox or otherwise displeasing to God.

      Here is the (incredible) response of the Vatican:

      Pontificia Commissio Ecclesia Dei
      Prot. 156/2009
      Vatican City, 23 May 2012

      Your Excellency,

      This Pontifical Commission has received, via your Excellency’s good offices, a copy of a correspondence from [name blacked out] placing before the Commission two dubia as to the interpretation of article 19 of this Commission’s Instruction Universae Ecclesiae.

      The first [dubium] asked whether legitimas in UE, article 19, is to be understood as meaning:

      (a) Duly promulgated by appropriate procedures of ecclesiastical law (ius ecclesiasticum); or

      (b) In accord with both ecclesiastical law and divine law (ius divinum), that is, neither doctrinally unorthodox nor otherwise displeasing to God.

      This Pontifical Commission would limit itself to saying that legitimas is to be understood in the sense of 1(a).

      The second [dubium] is responded to by this answer.

      With the hope that Your Excellency will communicate the contents of this letter to the individual concerned, this Pontifical Commission takes this opportunity to renew its sentiments of esteem.

      Sincerely yours in Christ
      Mons. Guido Pozzo
      Secretary END.

      In other words, the new Mass is “licit” only because the Church permits it. Not because it is pleasing to God, so it stands to reason that there can be no obligation on Catholics to attend any Mass that even the Vatican will not affirm as wholly doctrinally orthodox and pleasing to God.

      Let’s hope Chris Stefanick reflects on the above: who knows what good may come of his visit, if he does, in fact, think deeply about the issues surrounding the new Mass.

      • Editor,

        I’m glad you posted that again. The Church, it seems, is full of clues as to the grave problems created by the revolution – clues left since Vat. II, that is – not to mention all the clues that the so-called canonical irregularity of the SSPX is a lie, created by the abuse of power. All you have to do is pay attention and know where to find them.

        • RCA Victor,

          Thank you – I think it is a very important “clue” as you describe it; if the Vatican itself won’t say that the new Mass is pleasing to God, we are free to draw our own conclusions.

          • Editor,

            This is an interesting take on the Traditional Mass. The girl is a Protestant and a bit mixed up, but I think she makes decent points.

            • Petrus,

              Looks very interesting. I’ve watched the first few minutes and will return to it later after I’ve enjoyed my evening allowance of champagne and caviar… Well, it’s not Lent, is it?

  7. The faith is all but dead in Glasgow, so it will take more than a layman’s show, however exciting, to bring it to life again.

    The modernists are dying out and this is a desperate attempt to breathe life back into the movement again. It is doomed to failure, I’m sorry to say, because the depth of the faith is only to be found in the return of the traditional faith, as others have said, and until the archbishop realises that, he will be chasing shadows, trying to fill his pews. I do wish this young man well – he’s obviously sincere in what he’s doing, but he’s obviously too young to have been taught the faith properly himself, brought up in novus-ordo land.

    It speaks volumes about the Glasgow priest who booked him though – he must be uneducated in the faith himself, to think that such an event would make much of a difference, a real, lasting, meaningful difference, to the faith in Glasgow.

    I do agree that the young man in question seems very sincere and if he does some good, that’s to be welcomed. I think though that the voting poll question makes an important point, in that lay people given such a public platform might – even without realising it – preach heresy, and the clergy these days wouldn’t know the difference, LOL! So, there is a very real possible danger to the faith of the young who will be attending this show.

    • I do agree that the young man in question seems very sincere and if he does some good, that’s to be welcomed

      Laura,

      I agree with this and also with your comment that the depth of the faith is only to be found in tradition.

      Given the total failure of the direction the Church has taken since the 1960s, its absurd to see prelates still trying to reinvent the wheel as to how to catechise youth. “We will get it right anytime now!” seems to be the message.

      Presumably they must think the Church was simply riding its luck for the previous 2,000 years, when it was able to reliably retain well instructed lay people, as well as attract large numbers of converts.

      • “Presumably they must think the Church was simply riding its luck for the previous 2,000 years, when it was able to reliably retain well instructed lay people, as well as attract large numbers of converts.”

        How true, Gabriel Syme. That is so very true. It’s like the Holy Spirit has just arrived in the 21st century! Instead, never has he been harder to find! LOL!

      • Gabriel Syme,

        Given the total failure of the direction the Church has taken since the 1960s….

        I’d like to propose to you and all the bloggers that, in fact, the direction the Church has taken since the 1960s has been a smashing success. Before you lose your latest meal over that statement, let me explain: at Vatican II, the enemies of the Church laid out a long-term blueprint, disguised in vague language, for gradually deconstructing the traditional Catholic Church and Faith, and eventually replacing it with a pseudo-religion that could easily be integrated into a developing One World Religion (this pseudo-religion, you may recall, was predicted by Bella Dodd 10 years before it began, strictly from her Communist Party association with several Cardinals who were Communist infiltrators ).

        Every Pope, along with the hierarchy and their phalanx of “theologians,” has been faithfully following, defending, and realizing this blueprint ever since, now culminating in the agenda of Pope Francis, who is merely carrying out the blueprint to its logical and unmasked conclusions: the destruction of liturgy, the priesthood, dogma, doctrine, discipline and morals.

        Would you agree, then, given the shambles in which we find the modern Church, that the conciliar direction has been a smashing success – by design? (This does not, I admit, account for the useful idiots who think they are actually improving the Church by implementing the aggiornamento revolution. But as far as I am concerned, they are nothing more than useful idiots. I would even hazard a guess that the infamous :”diabolical disorientation” of Sr. Lucia fame is most aptly applied to the useful idiots, rather than to the embedded enemies of the Church who know exactly what they are doing).

        • RCA Victor,

          “shambles” has to be THE single most accurate description of the state of the Church, that I’ve heard or read in a long time.

          Ironically, it’s the name of a very old street in York (England) which is associated with at least one Reformation martyr, a convert, Saint Margaret Clitherow, who lived there and I think there is a shrine to her there – I know I visited a place associated with her in the street. My memory is of ye olde worldly cobblestones, but it is now quite a few years since I’ve been there, so I could be thinking of just about anywhere cobblestoned, north OR south of the border!

          What am I LIKE?! Strictly rhetorical, as always…

          • You are correct, editor, about York. St. Margaret Clitherow’s shrine is in her house in the Shambles, an old cobbled street, and there’s regular Mass offered there.

  8. ‘To reboot the Catholic faith’ is a most unfortunate expression since, as Fr. Lappin should know, gratia facit fidem (faith is the product of divine grace). Faith is not a machine. It cannot be re-booted, as Glasgow should already know from its experience of the hideous, and ultimately futile, ‘renew’ programme of the 1980s.

    But let us, for a moment, let the computing analogy stand. There is only one re-boot known to the Catholic Church. It is the re-boot of conversion. Glasgow needs conversion: from its Archbishop on down.

    Also, how much is this initiative going to cost? I am sure as certain that if this young man does this thing for anything above his basic living costs, the initiative is already doomed to failure.

    • I agree “reboot” is an unfortunate expression, because it is admitting that there has been a “crash” LOL!

      Yes, a computer can be rebooted after a crash, but it means going back to the very beginning, back to factory conditions, and if Archbishop Tartaglia did that in his archdiocese, then we’d be back to pre-Vatican II conditions! Back to the old Mass and the Ten Commandments!

  9. I think another good re-boot, to follow up on Prognosticum and to facilitate conversion (esp. of disoriented clergy), would be to condemn and dispose of every single document of Vat. II, and replace them with the draft schema that were rejected by the Rhine country radicals. Those were the schema diligently and faithfully prepared by the Preparatory Commissions – with the possible exception of the draft schema on the liturgy, which, if I remember correctly, was prepared by Bugnini, and largely kept intact during the overthrow of the Council.

    • I agree – it’s what I’ve just said above, back to pre-Vatican II conditions, the old faith restored. I don’t think that’s what they’ve got in mind in Glasgow, somehow, LOL!

  10. Instead of answering my email to him, Chris Stefanick has taken to sending me his regular email messages, which this morning, is on the subject of freedom of religion – and it is clear that Chris accepts the modernist definition; notice the mention of Martin Luther King et al – but for the fact that they were allowed to follow, publicly, their false religion/denomination, this or that wouldn’t have happened (in the case of MLK, civil rights for all…. Doesn’t say much about the charity preached for 2000 years by the Catholic Church!)

    We can’t really be surprised – were he to preach the traditional Catholic position on “freedom of religion”, he would NOT be coming to the modernist Archdiocese of Glasgow.

  11. I am just a little wary of the young man. I went on to his web and found it hard to get information although he wants donations and to send me e-mails even though I have not ‘tested the goods’ and indeed his e-mails were flimsy to say the least. so I do not know where he stands. Ishejustseeking publicity- that may be judgemental and wrong though it looks very much that way. He is young priest who never lived through Vatican II, so on a positive note I can say that there are many splendid young men now entering the priesthood in my diocese. Thee are ten studying for the priesthood of which three have recently been ordained and Bishop Egan of Portsmouth tells us that there are fifteen young men interested in the priesthood.l I was in the Southward Diocese a few months ago where a priest from another parish was saying Mass and saying there were only three student priests in his diocese. Bishop Egan is surrounding himself at the Cathedral with several of these young priests. Bishop Egan is inviting many religious orders into the Diocese and these are orthodox orders lethe Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate who now allow people to kneel for Holy Communion. As a result nearly everyone does. Only in one parish, but god help us you must think I am mad bragging about it, b unit is a serious step forward. With these young priests at the right time I think things will change. The days when feminists ruled the seminaries are over and the days when heretics were ordained are coming to a close. but what Glasgow needs is a return to Mary. It was the stifling of devotions, especially to Mary, which caused the cancer. Maryis the medicine that the Diocese needs. We are emotional and intellectual beings and Faith must appeal to the whole person.

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