Little Alfie died at 2.30.a.m. this morning and, as a baptised Catholic, we know he is in Heaven. So we need not pray for him, but pray for the consolation of his parents.
The MEP in the above video, describes the attitude of the medical and legal establishment in the UK as “institutional arrogance” for their intransigent refusal to allow Alfie to be taken abroad for a “second opinion” / treatment in an Italian hospital.
Given that the opponents of Brexit persistently tell us how the NHS depends on staff, doctors and nurses, from EU countries to keep it up and running, there can’t be any question mark over the qualifications, skills or ability of the medical staff in the Italian hospital which was prepared to accept Alfie. There was a fully equipped air ambulance provided by the Italian Government on stand-by ready to take Alfie to Italy. So what on earth was the problem? Should any doctor or medical team have the right to keep a child prisoner, against the wishes of his/her parents, especially in the face of the provisions in place by other equally well qualified medics?
It was Pope John Paul II who coined the term “culture of death” – is this what we are witnessing in the UK and if so, isn’t it time we campaigned for a new law which affirms the right of parents in such cases to over-ride the wishes of doctors? Is there a need for “Alfie’s Law” to protect the rights of parents in similar situations?
Following up on the notion that the CT blog could be a sort of cyber-parish for modern Catholics, esp. as a source of orthodox catechesis, here’s a thought:
Is there a traditional priest up your sleeve who would be willing to answer questions from readers in the form of a blog topic, every so often? You could call it “Ask Father” or something of the sort, and create a separate email for these questions so you don’t get swamped. Webmaster or someone on the CT Team could collect the questions and forward them to Father, he could supply the answers, and the Team could post them. End.
This, and similar suggestions, are put to us from time to time. I find the idea understandable on one level, but very puzzling on another. Here’s why.
It is the ordained who are causing and/or supporting/perpetuating the crisis in the Church.
I do have to admit, however, that, even before I became aware of the crisis, I am on record as saying to various friends that a priest is the last person I would ever approach to discuss a personal problem. It’s a kind of instinct. Even from the age of 11 years when enquiring about membership of the junior Legion of Mary, I was not encouraged by our curate… I later discovered that he was the Spiritual Director of the parish group! Clericalism is still a major problem in the Church and my own sense is that, when priests are so lacking in elementary understanding of the basic lay vocation, I can’t really be confident in the sort of answers they would give in any area of doubt, whether moral, religious or spiritual. Very recently a priest pointed out to me that St Catherine of Siena could criticise popes because she had been given a special grace from God – not because she was a Confirmed Soldier of Christ. So, that was me and moi put in our respective places! Now, of course, St Catherine of Siena was a great mystic and saint with a very important and special mission from God, but there was nothing to stop God choosing a priest or bishop for the task. The fact that He chose a lay woman signals to us that everyone, men, women and children, must be active lay apostles. That priests are simply not aware of that fact themselves, which is why it is seldom, if ever, a topic for preaching, does not fill me with confidence that their answers to key questions and advice would be solidly reliable.
The priestly vocation is to dispense the sacraments and preach the Faith. From time to time, we’ve had priest contributors to this blog as part of their duty to “preach the Faith” but they tend not to stay the course. Perseverance in the work of the lay apostolate is not a widespread virtue. The other day I was searching for a comment among very old blog topics and was astonished at the names of bloggers I’d totally forgotten. They come and they go, priests included. And I have to say that of the several priests who have blogged here, none have been “traditionalists” … Indeed, when I asked one “traditionalist” priest if he reads our blog he replied in the negative, all the while assuring me that he supported what we are doing. Truly, you couldn’t make it up. Who was it said: “the blog has been betrayed, even by those who should have contributed to it?”
So, in terms of “orthodox catechesis”, I would expect “traditional” priests to participate in our discussions and since they don’t, I lack confidence in their willingness to commit to the kind of role which RCA Victor (and others before him) suggest. And as for addressing individual concerns? Well…
I don’t see priests as problem-solvers; even “traditionalist” and “traditional leaning” priests don’t always get it right, and might do a great deal of damage with their “advice”. I remember some years ago, when my mother was elderly and with mobility issues, so that I was reluctant to leave her for any length of time in case she fell, a priest made a comment about my spasmodic attendance at his weekday Masses. I did try to attend when I could but that entailed recruiting a “mother-sitter” and although my siblings were happy to help when they could, they were in full time employment and had their own work and family commitments. They were already committed to staying with my mother on Sundays and Holy Days, to let me get to Mass. When the subject next arose and I “asked Father” if he thought attending a weekday Mass took precedence over my duty to my mother, he replied, slowly… “Yes …I think so”. Wrong! For me to abandon my sick mother in order to attend a weekday Mass would have been sinful, not virtuous. So, recommending priests to those seeking sound spiritual, religious and moral advice, is something of a daunting task these days.
As things stand, when I do, occasionally, receive emails from people asking me to recommend a priest, I suggest one of the SSPX-affiliated priests, who has given me permission to distribute his contact details to anyone who asks. This priest offers personal retreats for people on a one-to-one basis, in a beautiful setting, on the Scottish island of Stronsay, and I am always happy to email his details to anyone who wishes to contact him.
However, if I “asked [any] Father” you care to name, to take on the role of a Catholic Truth Agony Uncle as outlined by our zealous RCA Victor I can say without fear of contraception contradiction, that he would decline the job. Even with a six figure salary (£000.000) 😀
Of course, if YOU are a priest reading this who would relish the role – feel free to say so loud and clear. Your appointment begins with immediate effect!
Catholics will please God by holding to true beliefs and correct moral norms. The Mass you attend is secondary…
Editor, Catholic Truth writes…
I keep finding myself in conversations with diocesan Catholics – defined simply as those who attend the new Mass – who consider that being orthodox in doctrine and morals is the most important thing today, not which Mass we attend. The point is always made that, for those brought up in the new Mass, with no alternative, it’s all they have, and therefore, surely the most important thing is to be wholly orthodox, stick to right beliefs and moral norms. When I ask if they go along with ecumenical events, I get a variety of responses tolerant of through to positive about ecumenical activities. To date, I’ve never met with an outright denunciation of ecumenism.
Ditto, these Catholics seldom denounce the false apparitions at Medjugorje, instead focusing on the adherents in their circles who have experienced “conversions” and vocations, including priestly ordinations. All wonderful people.
I’m told too, that “traditionalists” need to stop talking so much about the Mass and focus on God more. Don’t go on the “attack” in conversation with diocesan Catholics right away, to ask if X attends the old or new Mass – speak about God first.
My answers to the above have not been successful in changing hearts and minds. Help!
How will you be celebrating St George’s Day? Hopefully, all Catholic Truth readers, bloggers and visitors to this site will remember a prayer for the hierarchy of England on this Feast, imploring all the graces necessary for them to begin the work of restoring the traditional Catholic Faith in their land, which bears the beautiful title of “Dowry of Mary”.
DEERFIELD, IL, April 16, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – Approximately 100 Catholics from the United States, Latin America, and Europe attended the 2018 Catholic Family News conference in northern Illinois last weekend.
Advertised as “The Weapons of Our Warfare,” the three-day long gathering at a Hyatt Regency hotel just outside Chicago featured talks by some of the most knowledgeable laymen and clergy engaged in the battle for and preservation of the Catholic faith, including renowned Church historian Roberto de Mattei.
The conference, which focused on Pope Francis and the family, was the first hosted by Catholic Family News, a Traditional Catholic newspaper, since 2016. John Vennari, the paper’s longtime editor who managed the organization since its founding in 1994, passed away after a long battle with cancer in April of 2017.
The crisis in the family
In his opening address, editor Matt Gaspers paid homage to his predecessor, assuring his audience that the fight for Tradition will continue. Gaspers then delivered a well-sourced, detailed speech, quoting Sr. Lucia and Our Lady in an effort to contextualize attacks presently being waged against the family.
“Although it is painful to witness this terrible crisis in the Church and the family, the fact that it is occurring should come as no surprise. Our Lady told us it would happen.” The “crisis in the Church and the family share the same root cause, namely, a crisis of fatherhood.”
Gaspers made special mention of Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, the president of the Pontifical Academy for Life, who in March said it is “dangerous” to speak of the family as “the domestic church.”
Archbishop Paglia’s credibility is “next to nothing,” Gaspers said. He has “thoroughly dismantled the Pontifical Academy for Life and has commissioned homoerotic paintings.” The family is a patriarchal hierarchy of baptized persons whose head fills the role of teaching, governing, and sanctifying. As such, it is a reflection and microcosm of the universal Church, he said.
Gaspers also detailed how marriage and the family are “powerful weapons” that must be used in the restoration of Holy Mother Church.
True and false mercy
Traditional Franciscan priest Fr. Isaac Mary Relyea spoke about Confession, a timely topic given the implementation of Amoris Laetitia across the world and Pope Francis’ constant invocation of mercy.
Extensively quoting St. Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787), the patron saint of confessors, Fr. Relyea argued that there is a false sense of mercy being promoted in Rome. This sense of mercy is “twisted” and “disgusting,” he said.
Priests are “obliged to inform consciences” and to withhold absolution if the person confessing isn’t amending their life. You are “crazy” if you think you are being merciful by telling someone cohabitating in an adulterous union that they are pleasing to God, the priest said in a Brooklyn accent.
Fr. Relyea incorporated the Four Last Things — Death, Judgement, Heaven, Hell — into his remarks as well, recalling that although God shows mercy to those who fear Him, for those who abuse His mercy, He exercises justice.
The New York-born priest described the Pope’s 2016 exhortation Amoris Laetitia as “wicked.”
Attendee Elizabeth Yore told LifeSiteNews she went to the conference because “It is incumbent upon the laity to mount a resistance, and to continue to mount a resistance to what is going on in the Vatican, especially now given that so few Bishops and Cardinals are willing to do so.”
Internet-based Catholic radio station Magnificat Media broadcast live from the hotel as well.
Prayer cards and literature on Freemasonry and Our Lady of Good Success were given to everyone who came.
Despite heresy, the Pope is still the Pope
Three speeches at the “Weapons of Our Warfare” conference focused on the papacy.
Church historian Roberto de Mattei said “true devotion” to the Chair of St. Peter requires Catholics to speak out against “the heresies” being promoted by Pope Francis, who, despite propagating heresy, remains the pope.
Canadian Dominican priest Fr. Albert Kallio O.P. echoed de Mattei’s words. “Even if the pope is a heretic…that does not at all mean that by that very fact, ipso facto as we say in English, he would cease being pope.”
Rejecting the claim that Pope Francis has lost his office, Fr. Kallio said, “Even those who hold that a pope who is manifestly a heretic loses automatically his office [believe] that the manifestation required before the pope would lose his office takes place by a declaration declared by the authority of the Church, namely the bishops.”
It seems God is allowing “a sort of eclipse” of the Church for the moment, he concluded.
Christopher Ferrara, a lawyer and prolific Catholic writer, delivered a strongly worded speech emphatically urging Catholics not only to put forth the Church’s perennial teachings but to expose the problematic teachings coming from Pope Francis.
Speaking with LifeSiteNews, Ferrara said “the most effective opposition to what has to be seen now as the most wayward pontificate in the history of the papacy will have to come from the upper hierarchy.”
Such an opposition would come in the form of a public statement made by a significant number of Cardinals that would declare Pope Francis is “in error, that he’s attempting to impose error upon the Church, that his effort to pass off these errors as ‘authentic magisterium’ is a fraud…and that the faithful cannot follow this pope in his errors,” Ferrara said.
Young Catholics need Tradition
Another talk particularly relevant to events taking place in the Church was that which was given by 21-year-old Alexandra Reis, Catholic Family News’ youth correspondent.
“What can the youth do to fight the devil?” Reis rhetorically asked. Not staying updated with every piece of world news and constantly attending protests, she argued. Rather, they can fight the devil by fulfilling their daily duties of state.
If you want “real penance” and if you want to truly change the world, she said, try doing dirty dishes, try “getting out of bed right when your alarm goes off in the morning. Offer that up to Our Lady. Mary wants us to offer sacrifices to her heart.”
Reis told LifeSiteNews that today’s youth aren’t being taught about the virtues of purity and modesty. Millenials view religion “as a cross” and rebel against “simple acts.” In truth, “it is through the little things that we convert the world.”
Other weapons of our warfare
Louis Tofari, owner of Romanitas Press, a publishing company that helps Catholics learn about the Roman Mass, delivered a talk on the liturgy.
Tofari told LifeSiteNews that the Roman Mass “needs to be used to convert souls to Christianity and to restore the Social Reign of Christ the King.”
Another fascinating topic covered at the conference was the life of Fr. Augustus Tolton, a former slave born in the mid 1800s who was ordained a priest in Rome because no seminary in the United States would accept him due to being African American.
Catholic Family News’ web editor Brendan Young pleaded with Catholics to consecrate themselves to the Blessed Mother during a thoughtful address about St. Maximilian Kolbe and the Militia Immaculata.
Dr. Andrew Childs from St. Mary’s Academy and College in St. Mary’s, Kansas gave an insightful lecture on music while Bishop Bernard Tissier de Mallerais of the Priestly Society of St. Pius X discussed the Traditional Latin Mass. Source (Ed: visit the Catholic Family News website if you are interested in purchasing any of the talks in CD-format.)
If – in your opinion – Pope Francis is not the worst ever pope in the history of the Church, tell us who you would nominate for that title.
The Bishop of Paisley has criticised BBC Scotland after a video said Holy Communion “tastes like cardboard and smells like hate”.
The video was posted on the Facebook page of BBC The Social, a project aimed at young adults and managed by BBC Scotland, under the title “This is how homophobia feels in 2018”.
Holy Communion “tastes like cardboard and smells like hate” – blasphemy, BBC Scotland video…
At one point it depicts a priest holding a Mini Cheddar in a parody of the Host, and giving it to a woman who makes the sign of the cross. The narrator says Jesus “saved a lot of time when he died for our crimes, that he would’ve wasted teaching small minds that love is no sin”.
He then looks at a street preacher, saying: “See him, he thinks it’s faith.” The video then cuts back to the women who received Communion and continues: “But under all that din, it tastes like cardboard and smells like hate”.
Bishop John Keenan of Paisley told the Catholic Herald that the video was “offensive to Catholics in both the words and images used”.
He said that while there is always room for debate, the video is “not fair comment”. “It is ridiculing and demeaning the faith of ordinary Catholics,” he said, “especially at a time when Catholics are experiencing more and more abuse and prejudice in Scotland.”
“The BBC has to be careful,” he added. “It has to ask itself if it has ceased to be a broadcaster in the public interest, and is just promoting particular interests.
“You cannot imagine it treating any other religion like this.”
The Archdiocese of St Andrew’s and Edinburgh also criticised the video’s suggestion that orthodox Christianity, including Catholicism, encourages public hatred of gay people.
“The Catechism of the Catholic Church, states that: ‘They [homosexual persons] must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided’,” the archdiocese said.
Last month, a report for the Scottish government found that Catholics are the victims of 57 per cent of all religiously aggravated hate crimes reported in the country. Elaine Smith, a Labour member of the Scottish Parliament, noted that this is also an increasing trend.
She called on the SNP government to “go out to the Catholic population and listen to their concerns”. She quoted Archbishop Philip Tartaglia of Glasgow, who said: “Our problem is not so much sectarianism but anti-Catholicism.”Source
Catholic Truth Editorial Comment:
The video under discussion is filthy claptrap. It is, by definition, an assault on normality – which homosexual activity, is not. Normal, I mean. Two people of the same sex engaging in pseudo-sexual activity is now commonplace, but it will never EVER be normal. Click here to read more.
Yet, instead of objecting to the assumption that sodomy (now renamed “homosexuality” or “being gay” because, well, who would vote to legalise sodomy?) is normal and acceptable, we get Bishop Keenan in “gentle disapproval” mode – not of homosexual activity, Heaven forfend, but (of course, rightly disapproving) of the insulting, blasphemous images and words about a central tenet of Catholicism, the Real Presence of Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. It’s right, of course, to object to that disgraceful attack on Our Lord, and our holy religion, but he should not have missed the opportunity to challenge the homosexual stranglehold on free speech. They can say what they like, as insultingly as they like, but the rest of us, not so much…
The LGBT etc Brigade have been hugely successful in shutting down any questioning of their pseudo-sexual activity. But, before I’m charged with a “hate-crime” let me be absolutely crystal clear: I do not hate anyone, not bank robbers, not burglars, not mass murderers, not homosexuals, nobody. I merely disagree profoundly with what they do and I will never EVER allow myself to be blackmailed into silent complicity by the threat of being labelled “homophobic” . If disapproving of unnatural pseudo-sexual activity is “homophobic” (lit. fear of men!) then, call me “homophobic” – and proud of it.
Bishop Keenan of Paisley, and the Archbishop (Philip Tartaglia) of Glasgow, both quoted in the Catholic Herald report, should have said the above, instead of leaving it to a small group of Catholic lay people to speak out against the moral evils of our day. My message to them: stop mincing your words, if you will excuse the pun.
Yes, this video is an evil attack on our Faith, manifestly anti-Catholic, yes it is encouraging the anti-Catholic prejudice which is a matter of public record in Scotland today, but, just as important is the fact that this video promotes the lie that we are all bound to accept, without question, the New Morality in Scotland, no matter that our Catholic consciences dictate otherwise. That needs to be called out for the tyranny that it is, using words of one syllable. Quoting the Catechism on the need to respect people with same-sex attraction doesn’t quite cut it. They don’t want “respect”; they want acceptance. They want the Church to condone their behaviour. Won’t happen. Bishops need to spell that out at every opportunity. Otherwise, we can expect more of the same, and this video, believe me, is not something of which we want to see more…
Now, click here if you choose to watch the actual video which is disgraceful in the extreme. It ends with a disgusting (let me repeat, disgusting) homosexual kiss. Urghhh! Pray a Hail Mary for the grace to be unaffected by the film, for your purity to be protected.
For the record, whether they like it or not, BBC Scotland is about to receive the link to this thread. So, share your thoughts – politely, and in the Catholic spirit of our House Rules – about whether or not such a video, featuring any other religion, would have seen the light of publication at the BBC. Rhetorical question, of course, but answer it anyway, in the comments below…
Updated | Claiming that some Americans are preparing for a coming war with Moscow, Russian state-owned television explained to the country’s residents how to stock their bunkers with water and basic foodstuffs in case a war breaks out.
Warning that the potential conflict between the two superpowers would be “catastrophic,” an anchor for Russia’s Vesti 24 showed off shelves of food, recommending that people buy salt, oatmeal and other products that can last a long time on the shelves if they plan to hide in a bunker. Powdered milk lasts five years, while sugar and rice can last up to eight years, the newscaster explained before showing videos of pasta cooking in a bomb shelter.
Time to call out Pope Francis’s disgraceful failure to consecrate Russia as detailed in the Fatima apparitions. Catholic Truth is urging all our bloggers and readers/visitors to this site to use the means of communication available to contact the Pope today to urge him to obey Our Lady’s exhortation to consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart. Below, a template letter for those who would appreciate some help in penning their email or letter. To contact Pope Francis either email theVatican’s press office at email@example.com [Ed: this doesn’t work – sorry] or write to him via the postal service, as follows: His Holiness, Pope Francis PP. 00120 Via del Pellegrino. Citta del Vaticano.
Your Holiness (or Dear Pope Francis),
In light of the increasingly grave geo-political situation, where the possibility of imminent nuclear war is currently the subject of much open commentary in the secular news outlets, I respectfully write to request that you set out the means by which the Bishops of the world will join with you in consecrating Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, as Our Lady requested through the Fatima seer, Sister Lucia. As you will know, following the initial apparitions in 1917, Our Lady reappeared to Sister Lucy on June 13, 1929 at Tuy, Spain, when in a great and sublime vision representing the Blessed Trinity, she announced that “the moment has come for God to ask the Holy Father to make, in union with all the bishops of the world, the Consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart. By this means, He promises to save Russia.” Our Lady promised that this Consecration of Russia would result in a period of world peace
Clearly, the previous consecrations of the world by your predecessors have not satisfied God’s plan of salvation. Far from enjoying world peace, we are increasingly threatened by the danger of nuclear war. God wishes Russia – the first nation on earth to publicly disown the very existence of God and to embrace atheistic communism – to be consecrated, by name, to His Blessed Mother, and if we are to avert the danger of all-out nuclear war, this Consecration must be fulfilled.
I urge you, therefore, Holy Father, to make the necessary practical arrangements to pray this Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, in union with the world’s bishops, as a matter of the utmost urgency. You alone, out of all the prominent religious and political leaders in the world today, hold the key to world peace in your hands, by virtue of your unique office. Yours etc.
If enough letters/emails are received at the Vatican, it just might make a difference. Certainly, in supernatural terms, it will make a difference because God is never outdone in generosity and He will reward our efforts with grace, that’s for sure. So, feel free to use, amend or discard the above – but please DO write: we cannot simply lament the Pope’s neglect – we must make sure that we are not guilty of neglect of duty ourselves, and we do have a duty to do everything in our power, by prayer and all the practical means at our disposal, to remind him of the importance of the request from Heaven to consecrate Russia to Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart. Over to you!
Holiness is the most attractive face of the Church. But even outside the Catholic Church and in very different contexts, the Holy Spirit raises up “signs of his presence which help Christ’s followers”. Saint John Paul II reminded us that “the witness to Christ borne even to the shedding of blood has become a common inheritance of Catholics, Orthodox, Anglicans and Protestants”. In the moving ecumenical commemoration held in the Colosseum during the Great Jubilee of the Year 2000, he stated that the martyrs are “a heritage which speaks more powerfully than all the causes of division”. (#9) Source
Pope Francis persists in giving the impression that salvation is a “done deal” , as long as people are kind and caring to the less fortunate. While it is true that souls may be saved who are not within the visible bounds of the Catholic Church, it is not true to claim that they are thus saved in their false (or no) religion. Souls are saved ONLY through Christ’s Passion and Death, through the operations of grace within His Church. Why won’t the Pope say this? Why give the impression that the Holy Spirit is “ecumenical”?
And there’s plenty more to shock in this encyclical – so feel free to identify the part(s) that had you choking on your post-Easter chocolate…
Last week I was fortunate to spend four days in the Eternal City. Having been to Rome four times previously, I was keen to ensure that I visited some of the lesser well-known churches that I hadn’t visited before.
Being a Dominican Tertiary, too, on my list were the two main Dominican basilicas in Rome – Santa Sabina, the mother church of the Order where an 800 year old orange tree, planted by St Dominic himself, can still be seen and still bears fruit, and Santa Maria sopra Minerva, the burial place of the great Dominican Tertiary, St Catherine of Siena.
St Catherine of Siena, who corrected the pope by letter and the spoken word, is a worthy patroness for anyone who speaks out and defends the Faith. The great saint exhorts us to, “Proclaim the Truth and do not be silent through fear.” Therefore, it was my privilege to kneel before her sepulchre, contained within the High Altar in Santa Maria sopra Minerva, and consecrate the Catholic Truth apostolate to St Catherine of Siena.
The early editions of our newsletter featured the following comment from St Catherine of Siena on the front page, so thank you for remembering us, and for dedicating our humble apostolate at her sepulchre in Rome – that’s beautiful, and greatly appreciated!
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