Wuhan Virus: Is it immoral to force people to wear masks when they are not safe?

Comment: 

Scots are to be forced to wear face masks/coverings when going into shops as from Friday 10 July (it’s already mandatory to wear them on public transport).  Those who fail to comply, will be liable to a £60 fine.

Me, I’d prefer to have my freedom, thank you very much.  I’ve yet to hear any expert claim that wearing a face mask will protect me from becoming infected. Indeed, it may, on the contrary, cause me to become sick.  This because what I am breathing out is trapped in the mask, and will re-enter my body.  No place else to go.  

Consistently, over weeks and weeks, we were told (by none other than the World Health Organisation) that wearing masks was pointless for the mass of the population. Now we’re being fined if we don’t wear one on public transport or in shops.  How long before we are forced to wear them all the time – after all, it’s a very simple, easy and visual way for a Government to gauge the obedience, the compliance of its population with the very new normal. 

I’m sick, all right.  Not due to any virus but sick of watching a fearful, almost feverish population who don’t know the facts about any of this, from the truth about the infection and death rates, to the uselessness of wearing face masks.  Sick of watching the unthinking compliance. 

This pointless fear has affected every part of our lives – our daily travel, shopping, already a chore due to lengthy queues, signposting, (anti)-social distancing and now face masks.   Shockingly this same irrational fear has struck the clergy from the top down, so that we are denied the Sacraments, and God is denied the public worship due to Him.  This cowardly behaviour on the part of priests and bishops will not be easily forgotten by the scandalised laity. 

It’s painfully obvious that this is not going to end. The “easing” of restrictions means, in effect, nothing more than a change of restrictions.  Face masks are simply the latest totalitarian measure to control us. Talk of a “second wave” is already all the rage.  The erratic World Health Organisation – in a panic because the economy of the USA shows amazing signs of recovery already – is bleating on with its “warning” of a second wave which means, of course, more lockdowns.

Either we sleep-walk – or, more accurately, continue to march – into permanent authoritarian governance, or we refuse to go along with this charade. Are we really to be criminalized for refusing to wear a face mask?  When it really makes no difference in the matter of safety from the Wuhan virus, and can, on the contrary, cause us to become ill? Isn’t it immoral –  sinful – to risk abusing our bodies in this way?   

Holy Week Reflection & News Update…

Comment: 

During Holy Week the blog is usually closed to comments.  This year, due to the unusual circumstances in which we find ourselves, we’ve decided to leave the blog open, while encouraging everyone to spend less time blogging – the Catholic Truth team plan to do just that, in order to focus as fully as possible on the events of this Holy Week through spiritual reading, reflection and prayer.   The various topic threads will remain open, but we won’t be posting any new topic threads.  Instead, everyone is free to post any news updates here, if the topic is not already listed.  So, whether it is a news update on the Coronavirus crisis or a specifically Church-related matter, this thread should serve the purpose. 

We would ask bloggers to resist the temptation to continue any conversation which looks like ending in an unpleasant argument – this week should be a peaceful week, where we find time to think seriously about what our Saviour suffered in order to afford us the possibility of saving our souls from eternal misery in Hell.  Any outbreak of animosity will force the administrator to take the necessary steps to restore peace.  Hopefully, we will all be able to benefit from the religious and spiritual content posted, and any news updates will be understood to be for information and reasonable commentary only.  Thank you everyone for your co-operation in this regard.   

The first purpose of this thread, of course, is to allow us to reflect on the Passion and Death of Our Lord.  Bloggers may post their own favourite reflections, poems, prayers and hymns to share, and since we are unable to attend the usual Church services, we may take advantage of the temporary provision of Live-Stream services here  (UK) and/or here (USA)   

We wish everyone a very peaceful and spiritually fruitful Holy Week.  

Modern Catholics Discuss Liturgical Abuses in New Mass – You Just Couldn’t Make This Stuff Up…Honest!

Comment: 

This group takes too long to get into the discussion (at least five minutes) but once they get going, it’s very interesting indeed to hear them objecting to some of the very things which were defended and promoted by fellow-parishioners when some of us were doing the complaining.  It’s also interesting to see how the standards have shifted (mostly in a downward direction).  In the end, it dawns on Catholics who are truly thinking it all through, that there is no option but to move on to the traditional Mass – back to the future…  It seems clear that the growth is to be found where the traditional Latin Mass is being offered, so pray for the trio in the video. They obviously mean well.  I liked them as people – so much so that, but for the geography, I’d invite them out for Haggis and Neeps 😀

Anyway, in summary, below are the 15 things which the group in the video argue need to stop happening… or not;  there is some disagreement within the group which offers food for thought, not least because, notably, it is the priest [“Richard” or “Rich” as he seems to introduce himself] who does the disagreeing.  

Clapping (applause)

2 Too many Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion

3 Receiving from the Chalice (“cup”) when sick

4 Leaving seats at sign of peace to “share the peace” with people across the church

5 Socialising before (and after) Mass

6 Phone ringing 

7 Not donating

8 Leaving Mass early

9 Bad preaching (lack of “fire”, not inspiring or nourishing)  [worryingly, the priest in the video is open to laity, including women, preaching.)

10 Receiving Holy Communion in mortal sin

11 Dressing inappropriately – not dressing up for Mass

12 No sanctus bells 

13 Genuflecting to the altar when the Tabernacle is somewhere else

14 I couldn’t hear anything specific, but the conversation went on to discuss baptism/use of “lemonade” type jug  (If I’ve missed something, tell me in the comments…) 

15. Holding hands during Our Father

My own predominant  thought listening to the conversation was that any hope for the future in that diocese lies with the laity, as represented by the two lads on the video not the clergy, as represented by the [very nice and doubtless well-meaning]  priest in the video –  a manifestly modernist priest but one who likes Cardinal Ratzinger!  How much more confusing can this mess get! 

Share your thoughts – politely!  I’ll be posting the link to this thread on their YouTube channel, below the above video, to be precise., so don’t be too hard on these good souls, who are all far too young to have been taught the Faith properly.  They are typical New Catholics tailor made for the New Mass, the New Liturgy, the New Sacraments, the New Catechism, the New Rosary, the New Evangelisation, the New Morality, the New Politically Correct  Pontiff, the New Canonisations, the New Commandments (minus idolatry and adultery) … and the New – you name it.    

1st Sunday in Advent, 2019: 50th Anniversary of the Imposition of the New Mass… Is Anybody Celebrating?

From Rorate Caeli

Fifty years ago this weekend, the Catholic Church debuted a new version of Mass following reforms made by the 1960s’ Second Vatican Council. From the use of vernacular language instead of Latin, to the priest facing the people instead of the tabernacle, the changes became mandatory at all parishes on the First Sunday of Advent 1969.

There was high-level resistance to replacing the traditional Latin Mass with a new version. Cardinal Alfredo Ottaviani, who headed and served for 32 years in the highest doctrinal office at the Vatican (later succeeded by Joseph Ratzinger, who would become Pope Benedict XVI), wrote an intervention in 1969 entitled “Short Critical Study on the New Order of Mass.” In it, he, joined by another cardinal and several liturgical experts, warned “fresh changes in the liturgy could lead to nothing but complete bewilderment on the part of the faithful.” [link to Ottaviani Intervention added – Editor CT]

The Pope at the time was convinced radical liturgical innovation was needed. Addressing his Mass alterations in November 1969, Pope Paul VI stated: “The results expected, or rather desired, are that the faithful will participate in the liturgical mystery with more understanding, in a more practical, a more enjoyable and a more sanctifying way.”

Pope Paul VI with the six Protestant Ministers who actively contributed to the creation of the new Mass…


The results were the opposite. Since the 1960s, Mass attendance has plummeted, from around 70% of U.S. Catholics every Sunday and Holy Day

before the liturgical changes, to 21% of U.S. Catholics currently attending weekly Mass. In other countries, including much of Western Europe, the number can be in the single digits.

But after five decades of experiments and decline, there is some growth to be observed within the Catholic Church. Ironically, it is with traditionalists joining the priesthood, entering convents and attending parishes that offer the very Latin Mass that was replaced 50 years ago.  

One such society of clergy, the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Peter, has seen growth even in the otherwise turbulent past year, including a doubling of

attendance at its Los Angeles parish, with new churches being established each year that quickly fill up with hundreds of families attending the old Mass. Its seminaries, completely full, often turn away applicants — a challenge shared by almost no diocese or religious order in 2019.

Interestingly, this growth in tradition — particularly among young Catholics — has occurred while Pope Francis has moved in the completely opposite direction during his nearly seven years in Rome. The Jesuit pope has chastised traditionally minded Catholics numerous times, including saying: “I always try to understand what is behind those individuals who are too young to have lived the pre-Conciliar liturgy, and who want it nonetheless.

“I have at times found myself in front of people who are too rigid, an attitude of rigidity. And I ask myself: how come so much rigidity? You dig, you dig, this rigidity always hides something: insecurity, at times perhaps something else.” This was said by the same Francis who, when asked about homosexual priests, replied “Who am I to judge?”

The resurgence of the traditional Latin Mass started before Francis, but has seen unprecedented growth during his papacy, a counterrevolution of sorts that some (both admirably and critically) call an alternative Francis effect. Even bishops and priests who were not ordinarily interested in the traditional Latin Mass have been much more generous and vocal in offering additional such liturgies. Two distinct wings of the Catholic Church have emerged. Often, the new versus the old Mass is a defining characteristic of the opposing coalitions.

The past 50 years have not been good ones for the Catholic Church. Pope Benedict saw this when he wrote, of the new form of Mass, “we abandoned the organic, living process of growth and development over centuries, and replaced it — as in a manufacturing process — with a fabrication, a banal on-the-spot product.”

How the hierarchy of the Church deals with “those individuals who are too young to have lived the pre-Conciliar liturgy, and who want it nonetheless” is a question they have not yet begun to answer.  Source – Rorate Caeli

Comment: 

We’d dearly love to hear from those of you who are still attending the new Mass, despite the manifest evidence that it cannot possibly be pleasing to God.  Those involved in creating this new Mass made clear that their aim was to remove everything that would be an obstacle to Protestants (like, for example, the very idea that the Mass is a re-presentation of the Sacrifice of Calvary). Having made the Mass palatable to Protestants, then, nobody should be surprised at the prospect of making  it pleasing to pagans as well, by including the pagan rituals dear to the indigenous population in the Amazon region. What’s the bet that you will see the fruits of this latest blasphemy in a parish near you, Scotland, England, Wales, Ireland, USA – you name it – before you’ve had time to Google “Amazon Synod”… 

On this terrible anniversary, the book Open Letter to Confused Catholics, written by Archbishop Lefebvre, one of the few prelates at the Second Vatican  Council who acted to protect the traditional Mass, is well worth reading. Events have shown his analysis to be truly prophetic and it is to this Archbishop that we owe the growth of the movement to restore the ancient Mass and Faith.  Click on the image to reach an online copy which you really ought to add to your “must-read” list immediately, if not sooner 😀 

Finally… well… is anybody celebrating the anniversary of the imposition of the new Mass?  If so, we’re jes dyin’ to hear from you…  

Is The SSPX Now Fully Regularized?

Pope Francis has fully regularized the Society of St Pius X (SSPX), James Bogle, the ex-president of Una Voce International, told Gloria.tv (video below: see link – Ed)

Bogle stressed that the SSPX and the sacraments administrated by them, including marriages and confessions, have been formally recognized by Francis. The Society is also allowed to ordain to the priesthood whomever they see fit.

Francis further appointed SSPX Bishop Bernard Fellay as a judge at the Rota Romana, the highest appellate tribunal of the Church, thus recognizing his authority.

“I don’t see how much more regular you can get than that,” Bogle concludes. He acknowledges, however, that there are a lot of intolerant bishops who still treat the SSPX as if it were irregular.

To them, Bogle answers that those who do not like the integration of the SSPX “better have the argument with Pope Francis.”   Click here to read more and view video

Comments invited…    

Irish Bishop: “I am not the slightest bit concerned about making the Church strong again.” Apostasy Writ Large…

Ireland: Homily of Bishop Donal McKeown [pictured right] for Vocations Sunday Mass broadcast by RTÉ
Good Shepherd Sunday 12 May 2019

Every year in Derry Diocese, we have Mass in the local football stadium for all the children who have been confirmed during the course of the year. Last June we had a stand packed with 2,700 children and their teachers – complete with banners, hats, painted T-shirts and lots of music. For my homily, I asked whether they all remembered what the bishop had said. Not surprisingly, the answer was a resounding ‘no’! And then I told them what I remembered from all the Confirmation ceremonies – of all the children who had been photographed with me at their local Confirmation ceremonies, only one had held my hand and then given me a hug afterward. In some ways, she was the smartest child of all of them because she had a big heart and knew how to show it. This, I suggested, is what the Holy Spirit desires for each of us. And then I pointed out that this girl had Down’s Syndrome. Of course, since she was the smartest child there, we invited her down to the front – and the whole crowd stood to cheer her.

There is much discussion about the future of organized Christianity in Ireland. My own take on that is simple. I am not the slightest bit concerned about making the Church strong again. I am interested only in whether we are fit for purpose in bringing Good News to the vast numbers who are in need of mercy and healing. Jesus did not set up the Church to look after itself. The People of God exist only to seek out the lost and to offer them love and healing in Jesus’ name. Jesus was not interested in setting up groups of self-referential followers who would be concerned mainly with providing services for their own dwindling numbers. Pentecost put an end to that notion. Faith means encouraging people to have big hearts and knowing how to show it.

And there is a huge need for big hearts.

It seems increasingly clear that, in such a cultural context, Christ’s disciples are called by the Good Shepherd, not to catch up with everybody else, but to seek out the thousands who pay the price for the fragmentation, uncertainty, suicide and loneliness that seems to benefit some – but infects many with ‘an epidemic of loneliness’[1]. In his own day, Jesus’ eye fell on those who were harassed and dejected like sheep without a shepherd (Matthew 9:36). Anything less than that is a betrayal of the mission that Jesus gave his disciples. That needs big hearts.

And how is Church expected to carry out that ministry? It seems to me that there are three areas.

Firstly, Jesus was concerned with building relationships, bridges not walls. One core ministry of God’s people is to build welcoming communities. The Gospels are clear that Jesus went out to lepers, gentiles and public sinners. He told them that the Father loved them where they were – but loved them too much to leave them where they were. Pope Francis calls us to be a Church that is going out from itself and to build up our unity within the Body of Christ. The Church of Jesus Christ can never prioritize lifting the drawbridge to keep people away from encountering the Good Shepherd. That needs big hearts.

Secondly, Jesus was also known as the Teacher. He spoke to His followers by proclaiming their dignity and the mercy of the Father. He spoke about sin and forgiveness, right and wrong – and our shared call to be holy as God the Father is holy. Because He was so clear in his teaching, many hated Him. The Church is called to be a place where individuals and groups can grow in uncomfortable faith together, as disciples of the Rabbi from Nazareth. That needs big hearts.

Thirdly, Jesus wanted to make the Father known and loved. One of the Gospels tells us that Jesus gathered disciples to be with Him and to go out (Mk 3:14). The first emphasis was not merely on teaching laws, though Jesus was also clear that, if anyone keeps His words, the Father and Jesus will make their home in that person (Jn 14:23). Those who hear the voice of the Good Shepherd follow His ways and not merely their own. The Gospel not only comforts the afflicted but afflicts the comfortable. That needs big hearts.

In a changing Irish Church, some people imagine that lay involvement means laity doing more ‘to help poor Father do all his jobs’. I prefer to see the Good Shepherd model of Church as one where those in leadership roles (be they ordained, consecrated or lay like the great Jean Vanier) – by proclaiming the Word, by the liturgical celebration of the mystery of faith and a prophetic way of life – form the whole people of God for their mission of bringing Good News to every hurting corner of their parish and of the world. That calls for heroism and generosity to a fault. But Jesus’ example called for nothing else. Any changes in Church structure must serve that mission and nothing else.

We face many challenges in making organized Irish Christianity fit for purpose. But on this Sunday, the big-hearted Good Shepherd who has sought us out sends us out. If we expect something different for the Church, perhaps we haven’t really heard today’s Gospel.  [emphases added]  Source

Comment: 

It’s a while since I’ve heard/read this reference to “organised Christianity” – it was a popular euphemism during my days as a student teacher when, clearly, it was a means of diminishing the  importance of Christ’s Church. After all, “organised Christianity” might refer to every group of Christians – from the Salvation Army to the Church of England – working in the field, so to speak.  The “field” of glorified social work, that is, posing as Christianity.  To be honest, I am lost for words to describe my thoughts about this apostate bishop who has no clue as to the nature and purpose of Christ’s Church.  I will close, then, quoting Bishop Schneider [pictured below] who warned those “shepherds of the Church” referring to the fire at Notre Dame, who are, in fact, “spiritual arsonists”. 

“God will not indefinitely and shamelessly be mocked by so many Shepherds of the Church today, through their betrayal of the Faith, their sycophantic serving of the world and their neo-pagan worship of temporal and earthly realities.  To them are addressed these words of Christ, ‘I tell you, unless you repent you will all likewise perish.’ (Lk 13:5)  Source

Well?  Which of these two “shepherds of the Church” is speaking the truth, thinkest thou?  Can’t be both of them, as one couldn’t care less about the Church and the other warns of hell-fire for those bishops who couldn’t care less about the Church…   

Ed:  I will send the link to this thread to Bishop McKeown, not that it will make a blind bit of difference – “blind” being the operative word (“..they are blind guides. If the blind lead the blind, both will fall into a pit.” Matthew 15:14)…   

Priest: Celtic V Rangers V Mass. Oops! 

Pseudonymous Father Justin Thyme, a Glasgow priest, responsible for two parishes in Glasgow,  found himself in a bit of a bind when he realised that the kick-off for the Celtic Vs Rangers game on 31 March, 2019 was at 12 noon. Mass in one of his parishes is at 9 a.m. on Sundays, but in the other… well, that’s at 11 a.m.

You see the problem? Either miss the kick-off, arrive late at the game, or

And that turned out to be the solution. That “or” – Father Thyme  simply arranged for a supply priest to celebrate the Mass for the 4th Sunday in Lent while he, Father Justin, made the supreme sacrifice and toddled off to the Celtic game instead.

But, is it easy to preach the primacy of the Sunday Mass obligation if the priest is able to justify attending a football match instead? Even if, as the defence will go, he’s celebrated either the vigil Mass, or the 9 a.m. Mass, tell that to the parishioners of the 11.a.m. Mass in “parish number 2”.

Not a good look, as they say these days – or as we used to say in the bad old days “doesn’t look good…”

“I’m sure that” – Father Thyme was heard saying solemnly to a friend en route to the game – “Pope Francis would approve.”

There’s no arguing with that, unfortunately…

Scots boy presents Pope Francis with Celtic top.  Click on photo to read more…

Pope Francis: stick with the new Mass… 

Pope Francis, while he says “we must rediscover the reality of the Sacred Liturgy” also warns against “[looking]  back to nostalgic past tendencies or [wishing] to impose them again…”   Loosely translated, this seems to be saying, stick with the new Mass, and don’t hanker after the old…

So, it’s maybe time to remind ourselves of what, precisely, he means by “nostalgic past tendencies” and what precisely, he doesn’t want to “impose again”.  Take the few minutes necessary to watch the short video below and then share your answers to the two questions below…

Questions…

Since the liturgy of the Church is directed to God, to offer Him true worship / adoration, do you think He finds the Novus Ordo Missae acceptable and pleasing – does it achieve that central aim ?

How, in God’s eyes, do you think the Novus Ordo Missae compares to the Traditional Latin Mass (see video below)…

“When Mass is being celebrated, the sanctuary is filled with countless angels who adore the Divine Victim immolated on the altar.” – St. John Chrysostom (Bishop & Doctor of the Church).

Pope Francis Advocates Atheism Over Hypocrisy… But Not “Repentance”?

Pope Francis said “better not to go to church: better to live as an atheist (if you are a hypocrite)…

VATICAN CITY, January 2, 2019 – Pope Francis addressed a crowd of faithful with some jarring remarks during his first Wednesday Audience of 2019. Speaking in the Paul VI Audience Hall, this morning, the pope focused on two recurring themes of his pontificate: hypocritical Christians and the “revolutionary” nature of the Gospel.
“How many times do we see the scandal of those people who go to church and stay there all day or go every day and then live hating others or talking badly about people? This is a scandal – it is better not to go to church: better to live as an atheist,” the pope admonished.   Click here to read more 

Comment:

How many popes in history have advocated living as an atheist rather than being a hypocritical Christian?  You know what I mean.  Aren’t we all hypocrites at some time or another, in some way or another? Why can’t he exhort us all to repentance and point out that we are showing a very bad example to atheists, who might otherwise be attracted to Christ’s Church?  Oops! No need, I forgot, they’re going to Heaven anyway even if they don’t believe in God!  In which case, so are all of us Christian hypocrites whom he exhorts to become atheists.  In which case, in turn, why bother with the Church at all?  

It goes without saying (although I’m about to say it) that we, each of us, should be making every effort to overcome our lack of charity, to stop being hypocrites – and bloggers are invited, sincerely, to offer some practical tips on how to overcome this awful sin of lack of charity (I, for one, will welcome any suggestions with open arms). 

However, giving up the Catholic sacraments-based spiritual battle to conquer our inner selfishness in order to  join the ranks of those who refuse to even acknowledge the existence of God, the first of the four Truths necessary for salvation, is not the answer to our sinfulness and weakness, our hypocrisy…  Is it?