Scots Priest Challenges Bishops’ Response To Lockdown & Covid-19 Restrictions

On this, the Feast of St Michael, The Archangel, Defender of the Church & The Faithful, a priest of the Archdiocese of Glasgow – Father Stephen Dunn – speaks out against the closure of churches during lockdown, and the ongoing government restrictions being enforced in Catholic churches…

                        St Michael, Archangel,                           defend us in the day of battle…

An Open Letter…

Dear Members of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church in Scotland,

“Then he said, Son of man, remember everything I say to you, listen closely, and go to your  exiled country men and talk to them.  Tell them, ‘The Lord says this whether they listen or not.’”   – Eziekiel, 2, 10-11. (Office of Readings, Monday, week 24)

“This is My Son the Beloved with whom I am well pleased. Listen to Him!’ – Mathew, Mark & Luke’s gospel.

This morning I was deeply saddened and angered when I saw people having to be denied entry to one of our Catholic churches in our Archdiocese of Glasgow because there were 50 people already in, and in obedience to Archbishop Philip Tartaglia, and the guidelines issued by the Archdiocese and the Bishops Conference of Scotland, this procedure had to be carried out.  I was subsequently told that a man, his wife and his child, having travelled 15 miles were turned away a couple of weeks ago, again because 50 were already in.

ENOUGH  of  this  suppression, intimidation!  

This is disgraceful, shocking.  “Could you not spend one hour with me?”  No you can’t,  because Philip Tartaglia and the Scottish Bishops conference says no – only 50 are allowed in;  we are going to be obedient to government guidelines and not allow any more than 50 people in.

Obedient to a Government which advocates  Adultery, Abortion, Sodomy, and Transgenderism?  Please tell me one of those that is pleasing to God? 

Why are the Bishops of Scotland being obedient to such law makers? Being obedient to laws/directives made by a fascist, Communist government which drove fear into people and makes them act in fear, a government which you are obeying!  Our Lady warned at Fatima, Russia will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the Church.  I am aware that is not unique to Scotland, but as a priest ordained 26 years ago for Glasgow in Scotland I am going to focus my criticism/argument  there.

One of these persecutions of the Church is happening now.   The government, in its freedom removal and fear laws, said churches were to be shut, God’s people were not to gather at His house and celebrate/receive  the Sacraments, the primary means of the Salvation of their souls.  Bishop,  are you of God or of the world?

This  intimidation is happening before your very eyes and you happily go along with it.  Is this good shepherding?

Never  in the history of  Mother Church, has she been subject to the laws of the State.   The Church is not and never has been subject to the State; this is clear in all Encyclicals regarding the relationship between Church and State issued by the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. It is frightening that Bishops have compromised this clear teaching by their obedience to the State,  to the point where Sacraments, the primary means of  salvation, are being denied even to the dying. Shocking.

And  do not dare tell me that this is because of Covid 19, a disease which has a recovery rate of 99.79%! Yes a fatality rate of 1 in 500.  A disease, which 42 studies showed  by 39 – 3, that if treated promptly  and with the correct and proper dosage,  of  hydroxychloroquine, full  recovery increases by 33 – 50% ! 

See the facts  for yourselves! – this is not a study but a review of 42 studies!

For the purpose of the points/criticisms I make, I shall quote Truth given by Our Lord in the 4 gospels, showing how these present actions are against His will, contradict His will. I will also refer to other Scripture quotes and the lives of the saints.

From the start our Bishops closed our churches, the dwelling place of Jesus Christ in the most Blessed Sacrament.

Holy Water was removed from our fonts with which we bless ourselves on entering Jesus’ house, reminding ourselves of the covenant God made with us at Baptism – “Unless you are born of water and the Holy Spirit you shall not enter the Kingdom of Heaven” – John 3. 

Is God going to use Holy Water to pass disease to faithful followers of His son who remind themselves of His covenant?

The weekend before we entered national lockdown on Monday 23rd March the Bishops closed our churches, denying access. “Come to me all you who labour and are overburdened, and I will give you rest. Shoulder my yoke and learn from me,  for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls!”-  Matt 11.

When the sheep were frightened and scared of the Covid wolf, you shepherds denied them entry to be with their Master, He through whom they were created, their Saviour, in His Real Presence, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar. Sorry to say it, but I say directly, this is Shocking, Disgraceful.

Consider the prayer taught by the Angel to the little children at Fatima –

My God I believe, I adore, I hope and I love You. I beg pardon for those who do not believe, do not Adore, do not hope and do not love you. Most Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Ghost, I adore you profoundly and I offer you the most precious Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ, truly present in all the Tabernacles of the World in reparation for the outrages, sacrileges and indifference with which He Himself is offended. And through His Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I beg of you the conversion of poor sinners. Amen

You, Bishops of Scotland, you denied adoration, you are the ones who presently cause the outrages, sacrileges and indifference with which He Himself is offended, by denying the sheep time in the Real Presence of Jesus.  And at a time when they need it most.

You may reply:  But they might have had Covid,  brought it  and passed it resulting in an outbreak which would have resulted  through their coming to Church!

Is the Father going to allow His Son’s house to be the centre of disease and the passing of disease when the sheep come to His Son to find peace for their souls!  No. 

 When the Son of Man comes will He find any faith on earth?”  – Luke 18.  With such chief shepherds as we have, sorry Lord Jesus, it looks very unlikely.

What guidance and example do the saints give us, actions  that  will please the Father?

 St Augustine, Bishop and Doctor of our Holy Catholic Church,  says regarding shepherds i.e., Bishops and we priests who have advocated and followed the above practices; said on Monday, week 24, Office of Readings:

“So let us see how the Word of God, that flatters no one, addresses the shepherds who are feeding themselves not the sheep. ‘You take the milk, you clothe yourselves with the wool, you slaughter the fatlings; but you do not feed my sheep. The weak you have not strengthened, the sick you have not healed, the crippled you have not bound up, the strayed you have not brought back, the lost you have not sought; any strong one you have killed; and my sheep are scattered because there is no shepherd.” 

Not only did you close churches and stop people from spending time in the Real Presence, you stopped funerals denying the grieving time at the Lord’s  altar,  to pray for their loved ones:  “All I ask of you is that you remember me at the Altar of God” – St Monica.

In hospitals where people were dying,  they were denied access to priests, and so to the Sacraments, the primary means of the salvation of their souls,  the Forgiveness of Sin, Absolution for their Souls, which would have placed their souls in a state of Grace,  so helping them to remove the fear of death, helping them to find peace in Jesus’ mercy… 

As the Compendium Catechism of the Catholic Church, written by Pope Benedict XVI,  says:

How are sins remitted? (#200)

The first and chief sacrament for the forgiveness of sins is Baptism.  For those sins committed after Baptism, Christ instituted the Sacrament of Reconciliation or Penance through which a baptised person is reconciled with God and with the Church.

Why does the Church have the power to forgive sins? (#201)

The Church has the mission and the power to forgive sins because Christ Himself has conferred it upon her: “Receive the Holy Ghost, if you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained” – John 20

This mission of yours, this duty as shepherds, you neglected, by not making sure a priest was available to the dying in a time of great fear.

“But he could have caught Covid and might have died!”  I hear you reply.

Will the Father  allow disease to pass to a Priest/s, with whom Jesus has shared His priesthood, as he tries to worthily celebrate the Sacraments, the primary  means of Salvation, to sick and dying souls?   Have you any faith, trust in Jesus who has shared His priesthood with you? He whom St Paul tells us in his letter to the Philippians: “If our life in Christ means anything to you” (it should be the centre of our priesthood) “if love can persuade you at all, or the Holy Spirit that we have in common, or any tenderness and sympathy, then be united in your convictions and united in your love, with a common purpose and mind.” 

That common purpose and mind must be to follow the actions and teaching of Christ – was He scared to touch the lepers?  In the Gospel Jesus tells us of the son who said “yes”, he would go to his father’s vineyard and work but never went. On being installed Bishops, you promised to go and look after the Lord’s flock, but you have gone to the world instead, listened to its instructions and imposed them on the people, failing to implement Jesus’ teaching and ways.

Lives/example of the saints –

St Robert Bellarmine, Bishop and Doctor of the Church, feast 17th Sept,- During the time of great disease, at the time of the Reformation, the plague which ravaged Europe, he went about cleansing  and dressing the wounds of those infected by the plague;  what hand sanitizer was he using? Please tell me if you know – I better get some!

St Mother Teresa served the poor looking after them, dressing their wounds, helping them in their illness. What age did she live to?  87!  How many followed her, joined her order, she who trusted herself completely to the service of God and her neighbour. “By its fruits shall you know the tree.”  

If we are truly trying to be shepherds through the priesthood Christ has shared with us, these are the examples we should look to, copy and so trust in the power of Christ, as we try to do the will of the Father through the prompting of the Holy Ghost,  and without fear.

And finally to the Mass and how it has been changed by you Bishops.

Mass, the celebration of Christ’s offering on the Cross for the forgiveness of our sins, the institution of the Most Holy Eucharist, where we hear the Word of God to help us guide our actions to show our belief in Jesus Christ, our Saviour.

You shut our churches, denying people the Mass, the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ: “I tell you most solemnly, if  you do not eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His Blood you will not have life within you.” – John 6:53.

You stopped the sheep from receiving the Lord in Holy Communion at the time when they needed Him most.  Instead of doing what Christ instructed you did what the Government instructed: 

Do not get close to each other. Priests, keep people apart, distancing them from each other, no singing, the liturgy must be celebrated in a very basic way. You must make the faithful wear masks,  despite the  fact that the WHO admitted to the BBC that its June 2020 mask policy update was due not to new evidence, but “political lobbying”. – D Cohen, BBC Medical Correspondent     Yet, the people are  hindered in their ability to speak, to enter God’s Presence, showing their facial individuality, how God created them.  Disgraceful.

On 3rd September, in the Tridentine calendar, we celebrated the feast of St Pius X, great pastor of the flock, who realised the full value of the liturgy as the prayer of the Church that is pleasing to the Father.  You hinder such celebration in your clear obedience to the world.  Why?

One cannot help but think that if the Lord Jesus came into such churches, He would tear down your tape, cast aside your sanitizer bottles and masks and say My Father’s house shall be called a house of prayer, but you have turned it into a worldly den  which follows practices of the world and the flesh! Be gone!  – Matt,  21.

Priests have to sanitize hands before giving out communion – as Philip Tartaglia said to me in a letter instructing me to follow guidelines, or else!  People should leave the church after receiving Holy Communion; they should not remain/return to benches. People are to be denied time in the Real Presence of their  Saviour, He who sacrificed Himself for the forgiveness of their sins, their Lord and Master.  This directly contravenes the example of the saints of the Church who in their lives show the importance of spending time in the presence of Jesus, having  just received Him.

“The Bishops of Scotland have agreed to suspend the choice of distributing and receiving Holy Communion on the tongue during the current pandemic for reasons of infection control. This is not an attempt to change liturgical laws. It is a reasonable temporary measure to adopt in this pandemic.” – letter  sent by email to me from Philip Tartaglia, 20th August 2020.

You Bishops have no right, no such power  to remove people’s choice to receive Holy Communion on the tongue!

It is for people to choose, not you to dictate things contrary to the teaching and rules of Mother Church.

Is Jesus, who is using the priest, with whom He has shared His priesthood, going to pass disease through their giving of Holy Communion? Again I quote, When the Son of Man comes will He find any faith on earth?” 

According to Scripture in the Office of Readings of the last few weeks, the Lord asks of His shepherds, on numerous occasions, through the Prophets, and very precisely here: “When the upright man renounces his integrity to do evil and I set a trap for him, he too shall die for his sin and the integrity he practised will no longer be remembered; but I will hold you responsible for his death.” –  Ezekiel  2:20

By publishing this letter, as a priest who is struggling in the present situation, I truly believe I am acting in obedience to God’s will, pleasing the Father and following the prompting of the Holy Ghost by giving clarity through Christ’s words, not mine. I believe that by my quotes from the Gospels, I have declared myself for Jesus in the presence of men as Jesus commands and, I believe, a true shepherd should.  (Matt, 10:32)

To you, the people of the Body of Christ in Scotland, the One Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church I ask your prayers, especially before the altar of God. I am a sinner with faults and failings, some say many faults and failings.  Many will assure you “that you definitely won’t see a halo over  Dunn’s head!”  However, even with such weakness and faults,  I believe that I have a duty  to make this letter available to you, in obedience to God, Father, Son and Holy Ghost, to address grave failings and incorrect directives from our Scottish Bishops.

To those whom I accuse, I say reflect, realise what Christ wishes of we Shepherds, and like the Prodigal Son, come back to the Father – remembering that Christ tells us, ”There will be more rejoicing in heaven over one repentant sinner than ninety-nine good men who are in no need of repentance.” – Luke, 15.

And as individuals,  let  none of us forget:  “Remember dear Christian:   You have but one soul to save, One God to love and to serve, one Eternity to expect, Death will come soon, Judgement will follow, And then, Heaven or Hell for all Eternity!”  (St Teresa of Avila).

Yes, we priests have many souls to save, and because more has been entrusted to us in priesthood, the greater our Judgement!

God Bless you all, and may we all be united in Christ Jesus to carry out His will.

Christ’s brother in priesthood,

Fr Stephen Dunn
Priest of 26 years of the Archdiocese of Glasgow.
stephen.dunn@rcag.org.uk 

Comment:

Father Stephen Dunn has honoured Catholic Truth by permitting us to publish the above letter.  We thank him for this, and I have already assured him that our readers and bloggers will be praying for him.  It takes courage for any priest to speak out in this way. 

Father Dunn regularly offers the Traditional Latin Mass.  He learned the Mass on publication of Summorum Pontificum, and at that time his main reason for wanting to learn the old Mass was because his father, Dr John Dunn RIP, a supporter of Catholic Truth from the beginning of our publication, had stipulated that his funeral Mass must be offered in the Traditional rite.  Father has come to fully appreciate the old rite, especially in its reverence, and he now offers it as often as possible.

Please express your support for Father in the comments below, and remember to pray for him because, as we know, while dissenting priests are protected and promoted in the Church at this time of apostasy, loyal priests who preach and defend the Faith are, sadly, more often than not punished at some level – we have all been following such cases, most notably, recently, the case of the American priest, Father James Altman.  

Archbishop Viganò: Don’t Leave the Church – Stay and Fight the Modernists! 

This new statement is important, inasmuch as in recent days, both Father Thomas Weinandy, as well as Father Raymond de Souza, spread the suspicion that the Italian prelate might be “schismatic,” thus intending to leave the Catholic Church. This suspicion had arisen because of Viganò’s critique of the Second Vatican Council and its detrimental effects on the life of the faith in the Church. For example, de Souza’s article is entitled: “Is Archbishop Viganò’s Rejection of the Second Vatican Council Promoting Schism?” And Weinandy stated: “My concern is that, in his radical reading of the Council, the archbishop is spawning his own schism.”

In an August 22 article published by the traditional Catholic newspaper Catholic Family News, Kokx had asked Viganò a set of questions with regard to what faithful laity can do in the midst of this Church crisis that is going back to the Council. 

Kokx suggested Viganò needs to give more advice to laity and priests on what to do next: “He’s certainly diagnosed the problem, but what are his solutions, if any? What, in other words, is it that he believes Catholics in the 21st century should do in response to the crisis?”

Archbishop Viganò’s response as published on September 1 by Catholic Family News (see full text below) is clear: it is not the faithful Catholics who oppose the changing of the faith, but those who perpetrate these changes that ought to be questioned. He writes that we need to discuss “the position of those who, declaring themselves Catholic, embrace the heterodox doctrines that have spread over these decades, with the awareness that these represent a rupture with the preceding Magisterium. In this case it is licit to doubt their real adherence to the Catholic Church, in which however they hold official roles that confer authority on them.”

If people who hold heterodox views are in positions of authority in the Church, he continues, “It is an illicitly exercised authority, if its purpose is to force the faithful to accept the revolution imposed since the Council.”

In addition and on a practical level, the Italian prelate gives us advice on how to live and grow in the faith, working on our sanctification and remaining in the state of “sanctifying grace.” But at the same time, we are to assist and “comfort” good priests and bishops, seeking out reverent Masses. 

“Faithful laity have the right and the duty to find priests, communities, and institutes that are faithful to the perennial Magisterium,” Viganò explains. “And may they know how to accompany the laudable celebration of the liturgy in the Ancient Rite with adherence to sound doctrine and morals, without any subsidence on the front of the Council.”

Finally, Archbishop Viganò also praises the Society of Saint Pius X (SSPX), which has defended the traditional faith for decades now. They “deserve recognition” for their work of preserving the Catholic faith, he says, and adds that he considers Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, the founder of this Society, to be a “confessor of the Faith.”

Here we might remember that just recently, a cardinal stated that Lefebvre will one day be declared a “Doctor of the Church” and that he was “prophetic.”

Let us close with Viganò’s last words of his response to Kokx’s questions:

“The cure for rebellion is obedience. The cure for heresy is faithfulness to the teaching of Tradition. The cure for schism is filial devotion for the Sacred Pastors. The cure for apostasy is love for God and His Most Holy Mother. The cure for vice is the humble practice of virtue. The cure for the corruption of morals is to live constantly in the presence of God. But obedience cannot be perverted into stolid servility; respect for authority cannot be perverted into the obeisance of the court. And let’s not forget that if it is the duty of the laity to obey their Pastors, it is even a more grave duty of the Pastors to obey God, usque ad effusionem sanguinis.”

Below is the full statement by Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, reprinted with permission:

Disclaimer: The following positions adopted and advice offered by Archbishop Viganò do not necessarily represent the views of LifeSiteNews and are presented only for your information.

Dear Mr. Kokx,

I read with lively interest your article “Questions for Viganò: His Excellency is Right about Vatican II, But What Does He Think Catholic Should Do Now?” which was published by Catholic Family News on August 22 (here). I am happy to respond to your questions, which address matters that are very important for the faithful.

You ask: “What would ‘separating’ from the Conciliar Church look like in Archbishop Viganò’s opinion?” I respond to you with another question: “What does it mean to separate from the Catholic Church according to the supporters of the Council?” While it is clear that no admixture is possible with those who propose adulterated doctrines of the conciliar ideological manifesto, it should be noted that the simple fact of being baptized and of being living members of the Church of Christ does not imply adherence to the conciliar team; this is true above all for the simple faithful and also for secular and regular clerics who, for various reasons, sincerely consider themselves Catholics and recognize the Hierarchy.

Instead, what needs to be clarified is the position of those who, declaring themselves Catholic, embrace the heterodox doctrines that have spread over these decades, with the awareness that these represent a rupture with the preceding Magisterium. In this case it is licit to doubt their real adherence to the Catholic Church, in which however they hold official roles that confer authority on them. It is an illicitly exercised authority, if its purpose is to force the faithful to accept the revolution imposed since the Council.

Once this point has been clarified, it is evident that it is not the traditional faithful – that is, true Catholics, in the words of Saint Pius X – that must abandon the Church in which they have the full right to remain and from which it would be unfortunate to separate; but rather the Modernists who usurp the Catholic name, precisely because it is only the bureaucratic element that permits them not to be considered on a par with any heretical sect. This claim of theirs serves in fact to prevent them from ending up among the hundreds of heretical movements that over the course of the centuries have believed to be able to reform the Church at their own pleasure, placing their pride ahead of humbly guarding the teaching of Our Lord. But just as it is not possible to claim citizenship in a homeland in which one does not know its language, law, faith and tradition; so it is impossible that those who do not share the faith, morals, liturgy, and discipline of the Catholic Church can arrogate to themselves the right to remain within her and even to ascend the levels of the hierarchy.

The situation is certainly more complex for clerics, who depend hierarchically on their bishop or religious superior, but who at the same time have the right to remain Catholic and be able to celebrate according to the Catholic Rite. On the one hand laity have more freedom of movement in choosing the community to which they turn for Mass, the Sacraments, and religious instruction, but less autonomy because of the fact that they still have to depend on a priest; on the other hand, clerics have less freedom of movement, since they are incardinated in a diocese or order and are subject to ecclesiastical authority, but they have more autonomy because of the fact that they can legitimately decide to celebrate the Mass and administer the Sacraments in the Tridentine Rite and to preach in conformity with sound doctrine. The Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum reaffirmed that faithful and priests have the inalienable right – which cannot be denied – to avail themselves of the liturgy that more perfectly expresses their Catholic Faith. But this right must be used today not only and not so much to preserve the extraordinary form of the rite, but to testify to adherence to the depositum fidei that finds perfect correspondence only in the Ancient Rite.

I daily receive heartfelt letters from priests and religious who are marginalized or transferred or ostracized because of their fidelity to the Church: the temptation to find an ubi consistam [a place to stand] far from the clamor of the Innovators is strong, but we ought to take an example from the persecutions that many saints have undergone, including Saint Athanasius, who offers us a model of how to behave in the face of widespread heresy and persecuting fury. As my venerable brother Bishop Athanasius Schneider has many times recalled, the Arianism that afflicted the Church at the time of the Holy Doctor of Alexandria in Egypt was so widespread among the bishops that it leaves one almost to believe that Catholic orthodoxy had completely disappeared. But it was thanks to the fidelity and heroic testimony of the few bishops who remained faithful that the Church knew how to get back up again. Without this testimony, Arianism would not have been defeated; without our testimony today, Modernism and the globalist apostasy of this pontificate will not be defeated.

It is therefore not a question of working from within the Church or outside it: the winemakers are called to work in the Lord’s Vineyard, and it is there that they must remain even at the cost of their lives; the pastors are called to pastor the Lord’s Flock, to keep the ravenous wolves at bay and to drive away the mercenaries who are not concerned with the salvation of the sheep and lambs.

This hidden and often silent work has been carried out by the Society of Saint Pius X, which deserves recognition for not having allowed the flame of Tradition to be extinguished at a moment in which celebrating the ancient Mass was considered subversive and a reason for excommunication. Its priests have been a healthy thorn in the side for a hierarchy that has seen in them an unacceptable point of comparison for the faithful, a constant reproach for the betrayal committed against the people of God, an inadmissible alternative to the new conciliar path. And if their fidelity made disobedience to the pope inevitable with the episcopal consecrations, thanks to them the Society was able to protect herself from the furious attack of the Innovators and by its very existence it allowed the possibility of the liberalization of the Ancient Rite, which until then was prohibited. Its presence also allowed the contradictions and errors of the conciliar sect to emerge, always winking at heretics and idolaters but implacably rigid and intolerant towards Catholic Truth.

I consider Archbishop Lefebvre an exemplary confessor of the Faith, and I think that by now it is obvious that his denunciation of the Council and the modernist apostasy is more relevant than ever. It should not be forgotten that the persecution to which Archbishop Lefebvre was subjected by the Holy See and the world episcopate served above all as a deterrent for Catholics who were refractory toward the conciliar revolution.

I also agree with the observation of His Excellency Bishop Bernard Tissier de Mallerais about the co-presence of two entities in Rome: the Church of Christ has been occupied and eclipsed by the modernist conciliar structure, which has established itself in the same hierarchy and uses the authority of its ministers to prevail over the Spouse of Christ and our Mother.

The Church of Christ – which not only subsists in the Catholic Church, but is exclusively the Catholic Church – is only obscured and eclipsed by a strange extravagant Church established in Rome, according to the vision of Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich. It coexists, like wheat with the tare, in the Roman Curia, in dioceses, in parishes. We cannot judge our pastors for their intentions, nor suppose that all of them are corrupt in faith and morals; on the contrary, we can hope that many of them, hitherto intimidated and silent, will understand, as confusion and apostasy continue to spread, the deception to which they have been subjected and will finally shake off their slumber. There are many laity who are raising their voice; others will necessarily follow, together with good priests, certainly present in every diocese. This awakening of the Church militant – I would dare to call it almost a resurrection – is necessary, urgent and inevitable: no son tolerates his mother being outraged by the servants, or his father being tyrannized by the administrators of his goods. The Lord offers us, in these painful situations, the possibility of being His allies in fighting this holy battle under His banner: the King Who is victorious over error and death permits us to share the honor of triumphal victory and the eternal reward that derives from it, after having endured and suffered with Him.

But in order to deserve the immortal glory of Heaven we are called to rediscover – in an emasculated age devoid of values such as honor, faithfulness to one’s word, and heroism – a fundamental aspect of the faith of every baptized person: the Christian life is a militia, and with the Sacrament of Confirmation we are called to be soldiers of Christ, under whose insignia we must fight. Of course, in most cases it is essentially a spiritual battle, but over the course of history we have seen how often, faced with the violation of the sovereign rights of God and the liberty of the Church, it was also necessary to take up arms: we are taught this by the strenuous resistance to repel the Islamic invasions in Lepanto and on the outskirts of Vienna, the persecution of the Cristeros in Mexico, of the Catholics in Spain, and even today by the cruel war against Christians throughout the world. Never as today can we understand the theological hatred coming from the enemies of God, inspired by Satan. The attack on everything that recalls the Cross of Christ – on Virtue, on the Good and the Beautiful, on purity – must spur us to get up, in a leap of pride, in order to claim our right not only not to be persecuted by our external enemies but also and above all to have strong and courageous pastors, holy and God-fearing, who will do exactly what their predecessors have done for centuries: preach the Gospel of Christ, convert individuals and nations, and expand the Kingdom of the living and true God throughout the world.

We are all called to make an act of Fortitude – a forgotten cardinal virtue, which not by chance in Greek recalls virile strength, ἀνδρεία – in knowing how to resist the Modernists: a resistance that is rooted in Charity and Truth, which are attributes of God.

If you only celebrate the Tridentine Mass and preach sound doctrine without ever mentioning the Council, what can they ever do to you? Throw you out of your churches, perhaps, and then what? No one can ever prevent you from renewing the Holy Sacrifice, even if it is on a makeshift altar in a cellar or an attic, as the refractory priests did during the French Revolution, or as happens still today in China. And if they try to distance you, resist: canon law serves to guarantee the government of the Church in the pursuit of its primary purposes, not to demolish it. Let’s stop fearing that the fault of the schism lies with those who denounce it, and not, instead, with those who carry it out: the ones who are schismatics and heretics are those who wound and crucify the Mystical Body of Christ, not those who defend it by denouncing the executioners!

The laity can expect their ministers to behave as such, preferring those who prove that they are not contaminated by present errors. If a Mass becomes an occasion of torture for the faithful, if they are forced to assist at sacrileges or to support heresies and ramblings unworthy of the House of the Lord, it is a thousand times preferable to go to a church where the priest celebrates the Holy Sacrifice worthily, in the rite given to us by Tradition, with preaching in conformity with sound doctrine. When parish priests and bishops realize that the Christian people demand the Bread of Faith, and not the stones and scorpions of the neo-church, they will lay aside their fears and comply with the legitimate requests of the faithful. The others, true mercenaries, will show themselves for what they are and will be able to gather around them only those who share their errors and perversions. They will be extinguished by themselves: the Lord dries up the swamp and makes the land on which brambles grow arid; he extinguishes vocations in corrupt seminaries and in convents rebellious to the Rule.

The lay faithful today have a sacred task: to comfort good priests and good bishops, gathering like sheep around their shepherds. Give them hospitality, help them, console them in their trials. Create community in which murmuring and division do not predominate, but rather fraternal charity in the bond of Faith. And since in the order established by God – κόσμος – subjects owe obedience to authority and cannot do otherwise than resist it when it abuses its power, no fault will be attributed to them for the infidelity of their leaders, on whom rests the very serious responsibility for the way in which they exercise the vicarious power which has been given to them. We must not rebel, but oppose; we must not be pleased with the errors of our pastors, but pray for them and admonish them respectfully; we must not question their authority but the way in which they use it.

I am certain, with a certainty that comes to me from Faith, that the Lord will not fail to reward our fidelity, after having punished us for the faults of the men of the Church, granting us holy priests, holy bishops, holy cardinals, and above all a holy Pope. But these saints will arise from our families, from our communities, from our churches: families, communities, and churches in which the grace of God must be cultivated with constant prayer, with the frequenting of Holy Mass and the Sacraments, with the offering of sacrifices and penances that the Communion of Saints permits us to offer to the Divine Majesty in order to expiate our sins and those of our brethren, including those who exercise authority. The laity have a fundamental role in this, guarding the Faith within their families, in such a way that our young people who are educated in love and in the fear of God may one day be responsible fathers and mothers, but also worthy ministers of the Lord, His heralds in the male and female religious orders, and His apostles in civil society.

The cure for rebellion is obedience. The cure for heresy is faithfulness to the teaching of Tradition. The cure for schism is filial devotion for the Sacred Pastors. The cure for apostasy is love for God and His Most Holy Mother.

Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us!

The cure for vice is the humble practice of virtue. The cure for the corruption of morals is to live constantly in the presence of God. But obedience cannot be perverted into stolid servility; respect for authority cannot be perverted into the obeisance of the court. And let’s not forget that if it is the duty of the laity to obey their Pastors, it is even a more grave duty of the Pastors to obey God, usque ad effusionem sanguinis.

+ Carlo Maria Viganò, Archbishop
September 1, 2020               

Source               

Comments invited…                                    

Glasgow Priest Silver Jubilee Invitation 

Fr Stephen Dunn celebrates 25 years of Christ’s priesthood on Friday 28th June 2019.
It was on Wed 28th June 1994 at 7pm in Holy Cross, Govanhill that Cardinal Thomas Winning ordained him to the priesthood.

This year at 7pm on Fri 28th June, Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Fr Stephen, again in Holy Cross, Dixon Ave, is offering a Thanksgiving Mass of the Father’s gift of Christ’s priesthood to him, with a sung Tridentine Mass.

Fr Stephen would love you to join him in this Celebration. 

28th June…
Feast of Sacred Heart of Jesus

 

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Pope Francis Suppresses Ecclesia Dei… 

The Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei Suppressed by Pope Francis
January 19, 2019 By fsspx.news

On January 17, 2019, Pope Francis suppressed the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, which had been created in 1988 by his predecessor Pope John Paul II.

The Apostolic Letter in the form of the Pope’s motu proprio was published at noon on January 19 by the Holy See Press Office and inserted in L’Osservatore Romano. From now on, the Commission’s responsibilities will be placed entirely in the hands of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which will designate a special section to take over its activities. This transfer, explains the Sovereign Pontiff, comes in response to a need expressed during a meeting of this dicastery on November 15, 2017, approved by him on November 24, and validated in a plenary session in January 2018.

The pope recalls how, over thirty years ago, the day after the episcopal consecrations in 1988, John Paul II wished to facilitate the “full ecclesial communion of priests, seminarians, religious communities or individuals until now linked in various ways to the Fraternity founded by Archbishop Lefebvre”. The goal was to help them “remain united to the Successor of Peter in the Catholic Church while preserving their own spiritual and liturgical traditions”. This preservation of the spiritual and liturgical traditions was ensured in 2007 by Pope Benedict XVI’s motu proprio Summorum Pontificum.

This historical reminder of Pope Francis has the merit of showing how this Pontifical Commission was originally founded on the condemnation of Archbishop Lefebvre and his work. In its thirty years of existence, it mostly limited itself to liturgical questions, with the intention of responding to the “sensitivity” of conservative priests and faithful, and of countering the Society of St. Pius X’s growth throughout the world…

But after the supposed excommunications of the bishops of Tradition were lifted in 2009, Benedict XVI believed that the ongoing doctrinal issues were a good reason to attach the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. The goal was to begin doctrinal discussions with the Society of St. Pius X.

The Primacy of the Doctrine of the Faith

Today, Pope Francis writes that the religious communities that belong to the Pontifical Commission have acquired stability both in their numbers and their activities; they ensure the celebration of the Mass in its “extraordinary form”. But, he points out, “the questions dealt with by the same Pontifical Commission were of a primarily doctrinal nature.” These objections and questions are clearly irrelevant to these communities. It is indeed with the Society of St. Pius X that they continue to be an issue.

This is what the cardinals pointed out on November 15, 2017, when they “formulated the request that dialogue between the Holy See and the Priestly Fraternity of St. Pius X be conducted directly by the aforementioned Congregation [for the Doctrine of the Faith], as the questions being dealt with are of a doctrinal nature.”

One conclusion is evident: as the so-called Ecclesia Dei communities have preserved “their spiritual and liturgical traditions”, they clearly do not count in this discussion. If they remain attached to a section of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, it is incidental. They can have the Mass, the “spiritual and liturgical traditions”, but not the whole doctrine that goes along with them.

That has always been the Society of St. Pius X’s great reproach against Dom Gérard [founder of the Benedictine monastery at Le Barroux who worked with Archbishop Lefebvre until 1988] and all those who thought they should break the unity of Tradition in order to negotiate a purely practical agreement. The crisis of the Church cannot be reduced to a spiritual or liturgical question alone. It is deeper, for it touches the very heart of the Faith and the doctrine of Revelation, Christ the King’s right to reign here below over men and over societies.

Comment: 

Is this, as some commentators fear, anticipating this suppression, the beginning of the end for Summorum Pontificum?  Is the Pope about to attempt to suppress the ancient Mass?  

Pope Francis: is it spiritual blindness or sheer idiocy that prevents him from seeing the need to ACT… NOW?! 

Comment invited…    

SSPX: Lifeboat in Danger of Sinking?

SSPX PRESS RELEASE:

Election of the Superior General

Father Davide Pagliarani, 47, center, was elected July 11 as the new superior general of the traditionalist Society of St. Pius X during the society’s general chapter in Econe, Switzerland. Father Pagliarani is pictured after his election with his assistants, Bishop Alfonso de la Galarreta, left, and Father Christian Bouchacourt. (CNS photo/courtesy fsspx.news) See SSPX-SUPERIOR-GENERAL July 12, 2018.

The new Superior General is 47 years old and is of Italian nationality. He received the sacrament of Holy Orders from the hands of Bishop Bernard Fellay in 1996. He exercised his apostolate in Rimini (Italy), then in Singapore, before being appointed Superior of the District of Italy. Since 2012, he was Rector of Our Lady Co-Redemptrix Seminary of La Reja (Argentina).

After accepting his office, the elected pronounced the Profession of Faith and took the Anti-Modernist Oath at the seminary church. Then, each of the members present came before him to promise their respect and obedience, before singing the Te Deum in thanksgiving.

Ecône, July 11, 2018

Election of the General Assistants

Just as the day was coming to an end, the new Superior General of the Society of Saint Pius X, Father Davide Pagliarani, and the 40 other capitulants have decided to proceed to the election of the two General Assistants.

The 1st Assistant elected is Bishop Alfonso Galarreta, auxiliary bishop of the Society, of Spanish nationality. Aged 61, he was ordained priest in 1980 at Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he lived for a certain time. In the past he has held the roles of Rector of Our Lady Co-Redemptrix Seminary at La Reja, Argentina, and superior of the Autonomous House of Spain and Portugal. He was 2nd Assistant of the Society from 2002 to 2006. Until now, he resided in Geneva, Switzerland.

The 2nd Assistant elected is Father Christian Bouchacourt, of French nationality. Aged 59, he was ordained priest in 1986 by Archbishop Lefebvre. For a long time he was stationed in Paris, especially at Saint-Nicolas du Chardonnet, before becoming District Superior of South America and then, in 2014, District Superior of France.
Now that these elections have taken place, the General Chapter will be able to address the numerous questions which have been proposed for discussion, until July 21st 2018.

Ecône, the 11th of July 2018

From the Remnant Newspaper…

SSPX NEWS: Two New Assistants General Announced– Bishop Fellay and Father Schmidberger
Written by Michael Matt | Editor

SSPX PRESS RELEASE:
The General Chapter of the SSPX has elected two additional Assistants General to serve on the Council of the Superior General, Father Davide Pagliarani, in accordance with the common law of the Church.
They are Bishop Bernard Fellay, former Superior General (1994-2018) and Father Franz Schmidberger, former Superior General (1982-1994) and currently Director of the Herz Jesu Seminary in Zaitzkofen (Germany).

Comment from Michael Matt, the Editor of The Remnant Newspaper… 

While this development [the election of the two additional General Assistants] may well prove to be a good thing, at first glance it is somewhat confusing. From the vantage point of an outside observer, it looks something like a general manager of a baseball team announcing his intention to keep his two previous baseball managers knocking around the front office to “advise” the new guy on how to establish a different style of leadership. Bit awkward for everyone. Keep them around if you want, but why make the big announcement that seems to send mixed signals?

Without wishing to take anything away from the good job done by either of these men in the past, I’m sure the SSPX leadership can appreciate why some traditional Catholics are a bit apprehensive over this announcement, since they were looking forward to the fresh approach of a ‘new coaching staff’ rather than an apparent reshuffling effort that may mean ‘business as usual’ when it comes to a whole host of problems blamed, fairly or not, on the previous ‘coaching staff.’ And this includes ardent supporters of Bishop Fellay, who only want what is best for the Society.

The SSPX General Chapter is still in session, by the way, and therefore this brief observation is meant only in a constructive sense– as merely the initial reaction of just one member of the Catholic press, while there may still be time to amend or clarify.
Whatever happens, let’s redouble our prayers for the SSPX–a crucial player in the Catholic restoration movement–and let us pray for the success of their General Chapter. ENDS

Comment from Editor of Catholic Truth…

There is certainly something in what Michael Matt says, in that a completely new team might find launching a fresh approach, with, perhaps, some necessary change(s) and new policies, easier to introduce, without the “previous bosses” looking over their shoulders.   However, one gentleman – who no longer attends an SSPX chapel – emailed the following comment, after reading the above over at The Remnant:  “[the above] highlights a serious problem with the SSPX (I know Michael Matt doesn’t attend an SSPX chapel, but this kind of thinking is typical of those who do);  this constant hand-wringing over the decisions of the Society leadership. The problem is caused by an environment where everyone thinks they know best, even better than the Church. It is a lack of trust, combined with a lack of humility and the schismatic mentality cultivated by their priests, IMHO. 

Well, do you agree? 

Why We MUST Judge Book By Cover

From LifeSiteNews…

April 3, 2018 – There is a strange tendency nowadays to think that the external aspects of a thing matter very little, while the “inside” is all that counts. For example: as long as you’re “a good person on the inside,” it doesn’t matter what you look like, how you dress, how you speak, what music you listen to, or even (taken to an extreme) what religion you profess.  

There is a grain of truth in this view: one’s height or build or skin color, for instance, are not moral qualities; sinners and saints come in all colors, shapes, and sizes. The problem is rather that we are too quick to forget how the outside wells up from within, how it often reveals to us just what is in the heart. A good person will dress modestly, speak respectfully, and listen to music that builds up a noble character instead of assaulting it—and all this, because of dispositions in the heart, invisible to men’s eyes but visible to God’s. The profession of a religion, while obviously done with external words and gestures, is rooted in the deep soil of the soul, and shows outwardly what a man’s most intimate worldview and priorities are.

The great British philosopher Roger Scruton comments:

There is truth in Oscar Wilde’s quip, that it is only a shallow person who does not judge by appearances. For appearances are the bearers of meaning and the focus of our emotional concerns. When I am struck by a human face this experience is not a prelude to some anatomical study, nor does the beauty of what I see lead me to think of the sinews, nerves and bones which in some way explain it. On the contrary, to see “the skull beneath the skin” is to see [merely] the body and not the embodied person. Hence, it is to miss the beauty of the face.

With perfect consistency, therefore, our medieval forebears would never have agreed with the platitude “you can’t judge a book by its cover.” For they spent enormous sums of money on Evangelaries or Gospel books with heavy bindings of gold, silver, and jewels, so that it was perfectly obvious that this book held the very words of God Himself, and deserved our utmost veneration.

The sacred liturgy, too, holds the very words of God—indeed, astonishingly, the Mass holds God Himself, the Word made flesh. It is utterly inconsistent with its inner content that the outward form of it should be anything but glorious, majestic, beautiful, solemn, reverent. We should be able to judge this book by its resplendent cover, that is, the Mass by its appearances, musical, textual, ceremonial; we should be able to see the heart in the actions. We should not “miss the beauty of the face.”

Nowadays we hear a lot of emphasis on not paying too much attention to externals in the Mass but just remembering that “Jesus is present.”

To lapse into a bit of slang: Sorry, this ain’t gonna cut it.

Throughout history, Christians have offered the best they can to God in the liturgy, especially the beauty attainable in the fine arts, in order that the souls of worshipers might be better disposed to adore and glorify the Lord. This is the sense in which St. Thomas insists that the liturgy is not for God’s sake but for ours. Of course it is directed to God; there would be no point in liturgy if God did not exist and if Christ were not our Redeemer by whose Sacrifice we are saved.    

But the liturgy does not benefit God or Christ, as if making them better; they are already as good, holy, and glorious as they can be. Rather, it benefits us who offer Him the sacrifice of praise, by ordering our souls to Him as our ultimate end, by filling our minds with the truth of His presence and our hearts with the fire of His love. These things are best accomplished by a liturgy that is impressive in its setting and furnishings, gestures and vestures, chants and ceremonies—one that is permeated from start to finish with manifestations of the nearness and otherness of God. A liturgy that is thoroughly sacral will be one that cannot be co-opted for secular purposes but compels the respect, wonder, and prayer of the beholder.

Put simply, man as a creature of intellect and sensation will not be benefited nearly as much by liturgy that is either verbal-cerebral or superficially flashy (as in the circus exhibitions of the Three Days of Darkness in Los Angeles) as he will by liturgy that is packed with rich ceremonial-textual content and saturated with sensuous symbols. This is exactly what all historic Christian liturgies are. Sadly, this is exactly what most contemporary Catholic liturgies are not.

A happy exception would be the growing number of places where the traditional Roman rite or “Extraordinary Form” [Ed: Traditional Latin Mass] is being offered, for this rite is saturated with sacrality and nearly compels one to pray, to go deeper into the mysteries of Christ through the outward appearances, just as the disciples at Emmaus “knew him in the breaking of the bread” (Lk 24:35). The liturgical rite is like bread miraculously multiplied down through all the centuries and placed in front of every king and pauper who seeks the food that will not perish. When we break this bread by entering into the rite, we come to know the risen Christ.

Matthew Schmitz has remarked:

It is amazing that the leaders of a ritual faith imagined that they could dispense with traditional forms of prayer. Among the few elites who saw the folly of this project, most were artists, naturally alert to the way supposedly superficial things can in fact be essential.

In like manner, aphorist Nicholas Davila observed: “When religion and aesthetics are divorced from each other, it is not known which is corrupted sooner.”

For all these reasons, then, a liturgy not only may but must be judged “by its cover,” by appearances—for, as Aristotle says, it is the appearances of a thing that point to its nature and substance. The Catholic Church has to care not only about realities but about appearances. Human beings come to know the truth through their senses; they cannot have concepts without phantasms. In religion, in the encounter with the God-man in His life, death, and resurrection, our senses, memories, imaginations, and emotions play as important a role as our intellects and wills. Source – LifeSiteNews

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… 

Even Newer Mass(es) Coming Soon!

Text of the Apostolic Letter Motu Proprio “Magnum Principium” Quibus nonnulla in can.
838 Codicis Iuris Canonici immutantur


APOSTOLIC LETTER
ISSUED MOTU PROPRIO
OF THE SUPREME PONTIFF
FRANCIS
MAGNUM PRINCIPIUM
BY WHICH CAN. 838 OF THE CODE OF CANON LAW IS MODIFIED 

The great principle, established by the Second Vatican Ecumenical Council, according to which liturgical prayer be accommodated to the comprehension of the people so that it might be understood, required the weighty task of introducing the vernacular language into the liturgy and of preparing and approving the versions of the liturgical books, a charge that was entrusted to the Bishops.

The Latin Church was aware of the attendant sacrifice involved in the partial loss of liturgical Latin, which had been in use throughout the world over the course of centuries. However it willingly opened the door so that these versions, as part of the rites themselves, might become the voice of the Church celebrating the divine mysteries along with the Latin language.

At the same time, especially given the various clearly expressed views of the Council Fathers with regard to the use of the vernacular language in the liturgy, the Church was aware of the difficulties that might present themselves in this regard. On the one hand it was necessary to unite the good of the faithful of a given time and culture and their right to a conscious and active participation in liturgical celebrations with the substantial unity of the Roman Rite. On the other hand the vernacular languages themselves, often only in a progressive manner, would be able to become liturgical languages, standing out in a not dissimilar way to liturgical Latin for their elegance of style and the profundity of their concepts with the aim of nourishing the faith.

This was the aim of various Liturgical Laws, Instructions, Circular Letters, indications and confirmations of liturgical books in the various vernacular languages issued by the Apostolic See from the time of the Council which was true both before as well as after the laws established by the Code of Canon Law.

The criteria indicated were and remain at the level of general guidelines and, as far as possible, must be followed by Liturgical Commissions as the most suitable instruments so that, across the great variety of languages, the liturgical community can arrive at an expressive style suitable and appropriate to the individual parts, maintaining integrity and accurate faithfulness especially in translating some texts of major importance in each liturgical book.

Because the liturgical text is a ritual sign it is a means of oral communication. However, for the believers who celebrate the sacred rites the word is also a mystery. Indeed when words are uttered, in particular when the Sacred Scriptures are read, God speaks to us. In the Gospel Christ himself speaks to his people who respond either themselves or through the celebrant by prayer to the Lord in the Holy Spirit.

The goal of the translation of liturgical texts and of biblical texts for the Liturgy of the Word is to announce the word of salvation to the faithful in obedience to the faith and to express the prayer of the Church to the Lord. For this purpose it is necessary to communicate to a given people using its own language all that the Church intended to communicate to other people through the Latin language. While fidelity cannot always be judged by individual words but must be sought in the context of the whole communicative act and according to its literary genre, nevertheless some particular terms must also be considered in the context of the entire Catholic faith because each translation of texts must be congruent with sound doctrine.

It is no surprise that difficulties have arisen between the Episcopal Conferences and the Apostolic See in the course of this long passage of work. In order that the decisions of the Council about the use of vernacular languages in the liturgy can also be of value in the future a vigilant and creative collaboration full of reciprocal trust between the Episcopal Conferences and the Dicastery of the Apostolic See that exercises the task of promoting the Sacred Liturgy, i.e. the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, is absolutely necessary. For this reason, in order that the renewal of the whole liturgical life might continue, it seemed opportune that some principles handed on since the time of the Council should be more clearly reaffirmed and put into practice.
Without doubt, attention must be paid to the benefit and good of the faithful, nor must the right and duty of Episcopal Conferences be forgotten who, together with Episcopal Conferences from regions sharing the same language and with the Apostolic See, must ensure and establish that, while the character of each language is safeguarded, the sense of the original text is fully and faithfully rendered and that even after adaptations the translated liturgical books always illuminate the unity of the Roman Rite.

To make collaboration in this service to the faithful between the Apostolic See and Episcopal Conferences easier and more fruitful, and having listened to the advice of the Commission of Bishops and Experts that I established, I order, with the authority entrusted to me, that the canonical discipline currently in force in can. 838 of the C.I.C. be made clearer so that, according to what is stated in the Constitution Sacrosanctum Concilium, in particular in articles 36 §§3.4, 40 and 63, and in the Apostolic Letter Motu Proprio Sacram Liturgiam, n. IX, the competency of the Apostolic See surrounding the translation of liturgical books and the more radical adaptations established and approved by Episcopal Conferences be made clearer, among which can also be numbered eventual new texts to be inserted into these books.

Therefore, in the future can. 838 will read as follows:

Can. 838 – §1. The ordering and guidance of the sacred liturgy depends solely upon the authority of the Church, namely, that of the Apostolic See and, as provided by law, that of the diocesan Bishop.

§2. It is for the Apostolic See to order the sacred liturgy of the universal Church, publish liturgical books, recognise adaptations approved by the Episcopal Conference according to the norm of law, and exercise vigilance that liturgical regulations are observed faithfully everywhere.

§3. It pertains to the Episcopal Conferences to faithfully prepare versions of the liturgical books in vernacular languages, suitably accommodated within defined limits, and to approve and publish the liturgical books for the regions for which they are responsible after the confirmation of the Apostolic See.

§4. Within the limits of his competence, it belongs to the diocesan Bishop to lay down in the Church entrusted to his care, liturgical regulations which are binding on all. Consequently this is how art. 64 §3 of the Apostolic Constitution Pastor Bonus as well as other laws are to be interpreted, particularly those contained in the liturgical books concerning their revision. Likewise I order that the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments modify its own “Regulations” on the basis of the new discipline and help the Episcopal Conferences to fulfil their task as well as working to promote ever more the liturgical life of the Latin Church.

Everything that I have decreed in this Apostolic Letter issued Motu Proprio must be observed in all its parts, notwithstanding anything to the contrary, even if it be worthy of particular mention, and I hereby set forth and I dispose that it be promulgated by publication in the daily newspaper L’Osservatore Romano, that it enter into force on 1 October 2017, and thereafter be published in Acta Apostolicae Sedis.

Given in Rome, at St. Peter’s, on 3 September of the year 2017, the fifth of my Pontificate
FRANCISCUS P.P.   

Note:  [at source, read also the Comment on the Motu Proprio by the secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments]

Comment:

The Catholic Herald sees no problem with the above – indeed, some might argue that the Herald’s assessment is somewhat naïve since few informed Catholics today have any confidence in the bishops, not to mention Pope Francis, not to damage the Mass even more than has already been achieved by the Bugnini revolution.  

The Remnant is closer to the truth:  Paragraph §4 makes it clear that the pope has now given bishops the power to determine much of the Church’s liturgical direction. “Within the limits of his competence, it belongs to the diocesan bishop to lay down in the Church entrusted to his care, liturgical regulations which are binding on all.”

This opens the door, not only to greater liberty in translating liturgical texts, but to creativity in drafting their own texts and rules. The bishops of an episcopal conference can now decide that if the faithful kneel to receive Communion, receive only on the tongue, or fail to participate in the hand shake of peace, this could be grounds to refuse them Communion.

The new motu proprio also supersedes Pope Benedict’s Summorum Pontificum, which dispensed priests from the need to obtain episcopal permission to say the Traditional Latin Mass. With the new ruling, an episcopal conference can now rule that the offering of the Latin Mass is forbidden in a given diocese, or in an entire country, so that traditional Catholics no longer have the option of appealing to Rome for help. The episcopal ruling is now Church law.” [emphasis added]

What we are seeing is a further attempt to pull the Catholic world away from the Church’s centralized authority and have a whimsical free-for-all. Francis himself, on October 17, 2015, called for a “healthy decentralization” of power in the Roman Catholic Church, including changes in the papacy and greater decision-making authority for local bishops, so this latest motu proprio is part of his plan to execute this decentralization.  END

Which commentator, in your opinion, has got it right – the English Catholic Herald or the American Remnant? (The Scottish Catholic Observer is too busy reporting on the Women’s Guild latest coffee morning to worry about incidentals like the liturgy.)   Comments invited…  

Cardinal Burke Feet of Clay…

In the clip below, Cardinal Burke pronounces the Society of Saint Pius X in schism.  Listening to it, I recall the reason several Catholic friends gave for refusing to attend his Pontifical High Mass in a Glasgow parish church recently, summed up by one insightful soul: “…he’s not the real deal.”   

Blogger Gabriel Syme, who did attend the Pontifical High Mass in Glasgow recently, writes: 

I read that earlier and was much dismayed by the reported comments from Cardinal Burke.

it is unbecoming for a prelate to tell fibs (that the SSPX is in schism) which contradict his brother Bishops.

Ironically, he would never say such a thing about genuinely schismatic groups, such as the Eastern Orthodox churches.

How disappointing that he is so feeble in the face of Francis, yet so bold with unprovoked attacks on faithful Catholic groups, attacks based on deceit.

I am very disappointed in him and have diminished respect for him now. As if attacking the SSPX should be on his agenda, while everyone is waiting (and waiting and waiting) for him to act on the dubia.

Comment:

His “damp squib” dubia and meek acceptance of the Pope’s refusal to grant him an audience to discuss the four cardinals’ concerns about Amoris Laetitia, are now placed firmly in context.  He hasn’t a clue.  He’s apparently no clearer in his grasp of the limits as well as the extent of papal authority than most of the confused Catholics, ordained and lay, suffering in the Church-anything-but Militant today.  He has shown himself to have feet of clay. Or maybe you’re a Cardinal Burke fan, just because, at least, he values the traditional Mass?  Let’s hear it…