Jesus or the Church? 

The latest video in our series Thinking Through Catholic Truth

If you can think of other arguments to convince lapsed and non-Catholics about the divine roots of the Church, please share your thoughts below…

Pentecost NOT “Birth of the Church”

Editor: it is a common error, repeated often in homilies/sermons, that the Church was “born” at Pentecost.  We need only recall the Petrine verses in the Gospel, and Christ’s final command to his apostles prior to his Ascension into Heaven: “Go out into the whole world and baptize…” to recognise that this claim is false.  The apostles were strengthened at Pentecost, their faith renewed so that they had the courage to come out of hiding and obey Christ’s Ascension command to go into the whole world and spread the Faith.  The Church, however, was established by Christ Himself  during His time on earth, as amply reported in the New Testament.

Below, extracts from a short article on the subject…

Every Christian believes that Jesus Christ established and sustains a community of faith, hope and love for all believers. This community we call His Church. The Church that Christ founded is the Catholic Church which has a formal earthly structure established by Christ and which continues under His authority and protection.

 Jesus did three things that established the framework of His Church. First, He chose humans to carry out His work. He appointed Peter to be the visible head of the Church. Jesus said to Peter, “You are Rock and on this rock I will build my Church.” (Matthew 16: 18) Jesus said “build,” as in to create a structure. Jesus built His structure on specifically chosen human beings Peter and the apostles.

Second, Jesus gave Peter and the apostles the power and authority to carry out His work. “Whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven.”(Matthew 16:19; 18:18) “Receive the Holy Spirit, whose sins you forgive, they are forgiven, whose sins you retain, they are retained.”(John 20:23)

Third, Jesus gave Peter and the apostles commands as to what that work should be. At the last supper, He commanded, “Do this in memory of Me.” (Luke 22:19) He commanded them to “Make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19), and to “Go into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature.” (Mark 16:15)

The early Church was structured in a hierarchical manner as it is today. We see in Acts, chapter 15 how the apostles and the elders came together under the leadership of St. Peter to decide the question of what was required of Gentiles. We also see how St. Peter was regarded as the head of the Church when St. Paul, “Went up to Jerusalem to confer with Cephas [Peter] and remained with him fifteen days.” (Galatians 1:18) There is no Scriptural evidence of independent local churches.

The Catholic Church is the only church that can claim to have been founded by Christ personally. Every other church traces its lineage back to a mere human person such as Martin Luther or John Wesley. The Catholic Church can trace its lineage back to Jesus Christ who appointed St. Peter as the first pope. This line of popes has continued unbroken for almost 2,000 years.

God rules, instructs and sanctifies His people through His Church. Under her teaching office, the Catholic Church preserves the Word of God. She is the custodian, keeper, dispenser and interpreter of teachings of Christ. And she accomplishes this under the protection of the Holy Spirit. Source

Comment: 

It is important to note that there was never any time when the Church was known as “Christian Church” – never.  From the earliest times, the Church was called the “Catholic Church”.  The adjective “Roman” was added during the Reformation period by the Protestant Reformers to push their heresy that the Church is made up of “branches” – of which those who adhere to Rome are but one part.  Click here to read more.  There is one exception to the writer’s claim that “RC” is not used in official Church documents, and that exception is found in Humani Generis # 27 – click here.  However, Pope Pius XII is a recent pontiff, so the facts  stand, as detailed in the article How Did the Catholic Church Get Her Name?

What, if any,  difference does it make if priests preach that Pentecost celebrates “the birth of the Church”?    

13 May: Feast of Our Lady of Fatima!

“The Message of Fatima
imposes an obligation on the Church”.… Pope John Paul II

FAQ…  from the Fatima Center website

1. What is a “consecration”?

A: It is a ceremony by which a person, group of persons, or thing is set apart as sacred and dedicated to the service of God or another sacred purpose.

2. What is meant by “the consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary”?
A: At Fatima, on July 13, 1917, Our Lady told Sister Lucy that “God is about to punish the world for its crimes, by means of war, famine, and persecutions of the Church and of the Holy Father. To prevent this, I shall come to ask for the Communions of reparation and for the consecration of Russia to My Immaculate Heart … In the end, My Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to Me, which will be converted, and a period of peace will be granted to the world.”

Our Lady’s request is very simple: Russia—the fount of so much evil in the 20th Century—must be set apart and made sacred by its consecration to the Mother of God.

3. Why is it necessary to consecrate Russia in particular?
A: Because God wills it. As Our Lady told Sister Lucy at Fatima: “Russia will be the instrument of chastisement chosen by Heaven to punish the whole world if we do not beforehand obtain the conversion of that poor nation …”

And as Sister Lucy disclosed in her published memoirs and letters, Our Lord Himself confided to her that He would not convert Russia unless the consecration were done, “Because I want My whole Church to recognize that consecration as a triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, so that it may extend its cult later on, and put the devotion to this Immaculate Heart beside the devotion to My Sacred Heart.”

Sister Lucy has explained that because Russia is a well-defined territory, the conversion of Russia after its consecration to the Immaculate Heart would be undeniable proof that the conversion resulted from the consecration and nothing else. The establishment in the world of devotion to the Immaculate Heart would thus be confirmed by God Himself in the most dramatic manner.  Read rest of the Frequently Asked Questions about the Consecration of Russia here

Click here to view all the Catholic Truth videos on our website

Francis: “the most wayward pontificate in the history of the papacy” – Lawyer…

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.”

Christian fraternity

In between speeches, conference attendees went to morning Mass, enjoyed evening refreshments, and frequented the vendor area, where Loreto Publications and the St. Vincent Ferrer Foundation of Texas —  among other apostolates — sold books, missals, veils, and audio CD’s.

The Francis papacy as well as the “Catholic Church: Where are you heading?” symposium held in Rome on April 7th (the same day of the conference) were common topics of conversation among guests.

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.)

Comment: 

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. 

Catholic Truth Goes To Rome!

Blogger, Petrus, writes…

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.

Comment:

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! 

Tell us how you voted in the poll, and why, for our education and edification.  

 

Catholic Crisis: Who Shoulders Most Blame – Pope Paul VI Or Pope Francis?

February 9, 2018 Il Giornale Interview with Father Fausto Buzzi, SSPX (pictured) – Taken from Catholic Family News…

Fr Fauso Buzzi SSPX

Tradition represents the only possible future for the Church. Fr. Fausto Buzzi has clear ideas. A priest of the Society of Saint Pius X, founded by Marcel François Lefebvre on November 1, 1970, following the Second Vatican Council, Buzzi is today the assistant to the superior of Italy.
He fought for several years, in the Association Alleanza Cattolica (Catholic Alliance). Then, in 1972, came the meeting with Archbishop Lefebvre and his entrance into the seminary at Ecône. In this exclusive interview, the priest of the Society of Saint Pius X spoke about the doctrinal reunification with the Vatican.

What is still dividing the Society of Saint Pius X from the Catholic Church?

It’s good to clarify that the Society of Saint Pius X doesn’t have anything that separates it from the Catholic Church. We are united to the Catholic Church, and we’ve never been separated from her, despite the divisions with the authorities of the Church. Now, these divisions do not come from us. Archbishop Lefebvre always said that they condemned him, he who was the first to be praised by the Popes, especially Pius XII. It is Rome that changed, and with the Second Vatican Council distanced herself from the centuries-old Tradition of the Church. To be succinct, one can say that what separates us from Rome are grave and fundamental doctrinal problems.

A Catholic parish priest once told me: “They talked a lot about schism, but they never had the theological caliber of Archbishop Lefebvre.” Is that so?

Many criticize or condemn the Society of St. Pius X without knowing it, and without understanding the grave reasons for which place it in hostility with the ecclesiastical authorities. Today many people, priests and lay persons, are starting to ask themselves what is taking place in the Church, and are opening their eyes to the fact that those who have been labeled for many years as schismatics, are perhaps those who have remained the most faithful to the Catholic Church, and paradoxically, the most faithful to the Papacy. In our seminaries, Archbishop Lefebvre wanted us to study the Summa of St. Thomas Aquinas, and the other classical theology texts. I assure you, that it was a great grace for us to receive such a profound and solid formation.

What is your opinion on Pope Francis?

For us, Pope Francis isn’t any better or worse than the other Popes of the [Second Vatican] Council and the post-Conciliar era. He works “on the same building site” begun by John XXIII, that of the auto demolition of the Catholic Church, to construct another that conforms to the liberal spirit of the world. Actually, I’ll say something further: the current Pope is not as responsible as was Paul VI. This Pope saw the Council through, he finished it, he made all of the reforms. Now, all of this is the cause of the gravest crisis which we see in the Church. Certainly, these actions and words of Pope Francis seem graver than those of his predecessors. But that’s not the case. Today, it’s the media effect that makes things much more evident, than was previously the case. In substance, however, the actions of Paul VI were much graver than those of Francis.

But Bergoglio seems to have taken more steps forward, in your (the SSPX’s) regard…

Certainly he has not taken doctrinal steps forward, in our regard. Rather he considers us as an institution of the “periphery.” As such, we are the recipient of certain kindnesses on his part. When he was a cardinal in Buenos Aires, one of our priests brought him the life of our Founder to read. He read it, and was left with a serious impression; perhaps this, too, contributed to him having special consideration for us. Many ask themselves, however, why he wasn’t so kind to the Franciscans of the Immaculate who had been decidedly embracing Catholic Tradition. Instead, he treated them harshly, with extreme severity, to the detriment of mercy.

Many consider you “extremists” of the Faith…

Look, Faith is a theological virtue, it’s a theological virtue that can grow infinitely, because the object is God Himself, so there’s no limit to faith. In this sense, being extremists would be something virtuous. That said, I can quote the words of Our Lord when He said, for example, “He that is not with Me, is against Me” or the words of St. Peter: “there is no other Name under Heaven given to men, whereby we must be saved.” Tell me if these aren’t “extremist” words. If we then consider the Martyrs who died rather than betray their Faith, how do we judge them? As extremists? It seems to me than the sense of the Faith is being lost.

What do you think of the doctrinal debate surrounding Amoris Laetitia?

You’re causing me to repeat myself, with this question. If on one hand, all the initiatives to correct this document and to defend the Christian family (indissoluble and sanctified by a sacrament) have been praiseworthy, the true problem is upstream. Do you know where the root of Amoris Laetitia lie? We find them in the Council document Gaudium et Spes. Therefore, as I said the terrible crisis in the Church is traced back to her DNA, that is, Vatican II. Think about it: if, instead of Gaudium et Spes, Pius XI’s encyclicalI Casti Connubi was published in its place; would we have the catastrophic Amoris Laetitia today? I don’t think so.

What about the rehabilitation of Luther?

What do you want me to tell you? To rehabilitate the biggest heresiarch in history, he who laicized the whole Christian Religion, who caused the Church to lose entire nations, is a doctrinal suicide and the falsification of history. The rehabilitation of Luther is part of the ecumenical utopia of the past 50 years. A utopia which leads Catholics to apostasy, which is no longer silent but deafening. I suggest reading a new book on Luther published recently: Il vero volto di Lutero (“The True Face of Luther,” Edizioni Piane) written by one of our priests, a professor of ecclesiology at the seminary of Ecône. One will understand the absurdity of this false rehabilitation, reading this book.

Do you think a future doctrinal reunification between you and the Vatican, is possible?

I am not a prophet. I wish that this would take place, above all for the salvation of many souls who risk losing themselves for eternity. But if you’ll allow me, I want to tell you what we can do today to contribute to the triumph of Tradition in the Church. We must ourselves – each Catholic – bishops, priests and [lay] faithful, return to the Catholic Tradition of all time, and nobody must fear feeling themselves to be against the authorities of the Church. Because, in fact, this isn’t going against them, but on the contrary, it’s the most effective way to help them understand that returning to Tradition is the one and only future of Holy Church.   Source – Catholic Family News

Comments invited…

Disastrous Pontificate Persists – Yet No Sense of Urgency From “Opponents”…

Me? Damaging the Church? No way!

A friend rang me last night to say he’d attended a Summorum Pontificum Traditional Mass and found himself chatting afterwards with a couple who were not husband and wife, but “partners” …   My friend was downhearted, dispirited that even the better priests seem to be willing to tolerate such scandals. 

Then this from The American Conservative “The president of the German Bishops’ Conference has declared that, in his view, Catholic priests can conduct blessing ceremonies for homosexual couples.”

The list of scandalous words and actions from this current shocking pope, or tolerated by him, grows day and daily. Too much to list here – and anyway, would, more likely than not, be out of date before I press the “publish” button on this page. 

There is no lack of evidence that Pope Francis is a danger to Catholic Faith and Morals.  Quite the reverse – there’s an abundance of evidence. Even as I type this, a report has come in questioning the pope’s integrity – would he blatantly impart falsehoods, we have to ask? Click here to answer that for yourself. 

The question is, why are the supposedly concerned bishops who allegedly oppose him remaining silent – such as Cardinal Burke and the Captain and Crew of the Lifeboat SSPX?  Why no sense of urgency? Why have they all gone to ground? 

It’s one thing to pick one’s fights, but not to fight at all?  Take a few minutes to view the short video in the News section of the Dici website here.  Who, on this earth, would ever imagine that the Church is suffering the worst crisis ever in its entire history, watching that broadcast?  Lovely reports, sure, but there’s been nothing about any attempt to fight as members of the Church Militant, under our banner as Soldiers of Christ,  in any of the recent videos posted on Dici  in January, which I’ve viewed with surprise and disappointment.  This latest one, linked above, dated 2nd February, is no different. Plenty of devotional content, suggesting the danger of becoming so heavenly minded that we’re no earthly use.  

What should the supposed opponents of this dreadful pontificate be doing, in addition to prayer. Concrete action, surely – but what, precisely? 

Comments invited…