Tuesday, January 31, 2012

WHY DO PROTESTANTS DO THESE KINDS OF THINGS SO WELL--HELPING PEOPLE TO LIVE IN THE WORLD AS CHRISTIANS?

Does our emphasis on the vertical aspect of our relationship with God cause us to be indifferent to the horizontal concerns and needs people have? Protestant sermons give lessons on how to live life, Catholic homilies are usually an exegesis on Scripture or an explanation of an esoteric doctrine. Or am I wrong? This video is produced by a non-denominational Bible believing Church:

A GOOD CASE FOR STANDING TO RECEIVE HOLY COMMUNION AND AN ABMONITION ABOUT SOME WHO CHOOSE TO KNEEL?

Bishop Salvatore Cordileone of Oakland, CA celebrating the EF Mass
“The proper posture is standing”

Oakland bishop provides detailed instructions on receiving Holy Communion in his diocese

(The following undated “Instructions on Receiving Communion Properly” by Oakland Bishop Salvatore Cordileone have been posed on the website of the diocesan Office of Worship.)

All Catholics, before receiving Communion, are to be free from serious sin and fast from all food and drink (except water and necessary medicine) for one hour before receiving. (Catechism of the Catholic Church, n. 1385; Code of Canon Law, canons 916 and 919)

The proper posture for receiving Communion is standing. This is to show the respect that is due the Most Blessed Sacrament (in our culture, standing up shows respect to someone of importance who enters the room); the bow before receiving Communion signifies the humility with which we must approach the Sacrament.

The deeper meaning of this posture, though, is that the position of standing is symbolic of the Resurrection, and so -- as is done in the Eastern Rites of the Church -- we assume this position when we receive the Sacrament of our salvation.

Receiving Communion kneeling, or genuflecting before receiving, while often motivated by the praiseworthy desire to show greater respect to the Most Blessed Sacrament, is not proper according to the liturgical norms.

It can also create practical difficulties, such as people inadvertently tripping over the person in front of them in line. It should also be remembered that the greatest respect we can show is to always ensure that when we receive Communion, we do so worthily.

When receiving Communion on the tongue: Hold your hands in front of you in a gesture of prayer, and when you approach the minister of Communion, bow, and then say “Amen” after the minister says, “The Body of Christ.” After the minister places the Host into your mouth, return to your place in the pew (or approach the Communion station for the Blood of Christ, as the case may be).

When receiving Communion in the hand: When you approach the minister of Communion, hold one hand on top of the other and extend your hands flat, like an altar top. (This follows the counsel of St. Cyril of Jerusalem, who instructed the faithful: “make a throne of your hands in which to receive the King [in Holy Communion].” He also urged them to exercise great care for any fragments which might remain in one’s hand.)

Bow, and then say “Amen” after the minister says, “The Body of Christ,” and places the host in your hand. Step to the side, reverently place the Host into your mouth with the other hand, taking the Host from the hand that it rests upon.

Take care to consume any particles which may remain in your hand and return to your place in the pew (or approach the Communion station for the Blood of Christ, as the case may be). Note: if one of your hands is impeded such that you cannot receive Communion in this way, you should receive on the tongue.

When receiving Communion from the cup: Approach the minister of Communion, bow, and then say “Amen” after the minister says, “The Blood of Christ.” Take the cup with your hands and reverently place it to your lips to take a sip of the Blood of Christ. Hand the cup back to the minister, and return to your place in the pew.

Monday, January 30, 2012

IT IS NOW BEING PROVEN THAT I AM CLAIRVOYANT WHEN IT COMES TO THE LITURGY

Or maybe I'm like "The Mentalist" on CBS--I pay attention to what I see and hear in high places.



Fr. Anthony Ruff, OSB translates and adds some editorial reflection questions to an interview that Cardinal Koch gave very recently in Austria and the good Cardinal seems to indicate what I've been saying for how many years now?

Cardinal Kurt Koch is president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, but he has a habit of speaking out on liturgical questions. He did so again this weekend in Breisgau, as reported by the Religion department of Austrian public broadcasting. The occasion was a conference on the theology of Joseph Ratzinger (now Pope Benedict XVI).

In Koch’s view, the readmission of the celebration of Mass in the preconciliar form is “only the first step,” but “the time is not yet ripe” for further steps. Rome can take further actions only when there is readiness among Catholics to consider new forms of liturgy “in service of the Church.”

According to Koch, “the pope suffers from accusations” that he wishes to go back on the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965). On the contrary, the pope wishes to take up statements of the Council on liturgy which have not yet been implemented.

Koch maintains that not everything in today’s liturgical praxis can be justified by the texts of the Council. He named as an example the priest facing the people during the celebration of the Eucharist, about which the Council said nothing.

In Koch’s opinion, further development of liturgical forms is necessary for an inner renewal of the church. “If the crisis of church life today is above all a crisis of liturgy, then the renewal of the church must begin with a renewal of the liturgy,” he said. MY COMMENT: ISN'T THIS LAST SENTENCE THE CORE OF THE PROBLEMS WE'VE HAD IN THE CHURCH, THE ACCELERATION OF SECULARISM AND SECULARIST ATTITUDES AMONGST LUKEWARM CATHOLICS WHO HAVE LOST THEIR CATHOLIC IDENTITY AND THUS THEIR WAY? ISN'T THIS TIED INTO THE OBAMA'S ADMINISTRATION THINKING IT CAN REMOVE THE RELIGIOUS LIBERTY AND FREEDOM OF CONSCIENCE OF CATHOLICS AND EVEN HAVE CATHOLICS ASSIST HIM IN BETRAYING THEIR CATHOLICISM--LIKE JUDAS BETRAYED JESUS?

The cardinal’s remarks provoke several reflections.

It is not the case that the Second Vatican Council exhaustively defined the parameters of liturgical reform. Much of this was left to the Consilium to carry out after the Council closed. The Council never mandated versus populum (priest facing the people), nor has any Church document since the Council, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that the practice an illegitimate development. Scholars such as Fr. John O’Malley have demonstrated that there is a “spirit of Vatican II” opening up new vistas for the Church. It is to be expected that responsible and creative implementation of the Council would lead to possibilities not yet foreseen at the Council itself. Whether versus populum is one of these can remain an open question. Which is to say, the fact that it isn’t mentioned by the Council doesn’t really answer the question.

CONCILIATION AND APPEASEMENT BY U.S. BISHOPS HAVE HELPED LEAD TO THE OBAMA'S ATTACK ON THE RELIGIOUS LIBERTY AND FREEDOM OF CONSCIENCE OF ALL PEOPLE OF THIS LAND USING CATHOLICS TO DO IT! BRING BACK THE PAPAL TIARA AND THE CHURCH'S WORLDLY ROLE IN DIRECTING CATHOLICS IN POLITICS!

Holy Father take this and wear it! It is time to bring it back!
Two cardinals unafraid to wear these despite being criticized for doing so, just as the Holy Father would be severely criticized by secular Catholics for wearing the tiara, would make nonetheless excellent candidates for the next pope. I suspect they would bring the tiara back and wear it--the Church needs to claim it is above worldly powers and dominions, above the Obama administration and all worldly rulers and dictators and kings and queens, all presidents, prime ministers and governors.
I'm beginning to think that Pope Paul VI and subsequent popes who have relinquished the papal tiara to history have made a grave mistake and have misinterpreted the role of the Church in the world as Vatican II envisioned. It may be time to bring it back. Guess who will scream the loudest? Catholics who are most likely to support the Obama administration and his assault of the religious liberty and freedom of conscience of practicing, believing and orthodox Catholics. Interesting, no?

My vote if I could vote is for Raymond Cardinal Burke to be the next pope. We need a more monarchical approach to Church leadership that is less conciliatory toward politicians and the world; we need to circle the wagons and protect the Faith from the world. We need to assert the authority of Christ the King! We have no king but Christ the King as Catholics. Guess which Catholics would oppose what I just wrote? Liberal, wishy washy Catholics, Catholics who are more post-Christian than they are Catholic and see traditional Catholicism as standing in the way of the dictatorship of secularism. They hate the "monarchy" of Catholic orthodoxy with its traditional trappings but love the dictatorship of secularism and the direction of secularization in Europe and in the USA as the Obama administration sees it.

One of the most outspoken bishops of the USA who named a spade a spade and called for faithfulness to the orthodox teachings of the Church, Raymond Cardinal Burke, was marginalized by the liberal press both secular and Catholic! I don't think his brother bishops liked his style or personality. And even worse for him in the eyes of his brother bishops is that he frequently promoted and actually celebrated the EF Mass! HE ALSO CALLED FOR THE DENIAL OF HOLY COMMUNION TO PRO-CHOICE CATHOLIC POLITICIANS AND HE WAS UNHEEDED BY THE BISHOPS OF THESE POLITICIANS. I WONDER WHY!

As I mentioned earlier, I do not like nor do I condone the disobedience of the SSXP. However what I do admire is that they are very clear about their position concerning the liberal and unorthodox trends amongst mainline Catholics and in doing so have only become "more Catholic than the pope" which means ultra-orthodoxy bordering on fundamentalism and fanaticism. While some of their political stances are questionable, they respect what every Catholic should respect and uphold but sadly no longer do today--respect for natural law, reverence for God especially as it was experienced prior the Vatican II, strict adherence to liturgical norms and no acquiescence to world thought (Vatican II asked the Church to dialogue with the world not to submit to the world. We were to bring Catholicism to the world, but what really happened is the world was brought into the Church.)

However when it comes to liberal Catholics as symbolized by what you read in the National Catholic Reporter, there is an interpretation of Vatican II that leads the Church into the direction of the secularized and post-Christian ideologies of the Anglican Communion in all areas once deemed sacred in Christianity. This liberal Catholics are subversive and work from within to destroy orthodox Catholicism and they have been very successful.

The liturgy is the first place to dismantle traditional Catholicism. Dissent from the Church's legitimate authority and the obedience that Catholic owe to the Magisterium not only in infallible declaration but all areas of faith and morals is marginalized and ridiculed. The elevation of personal conscience (formed or unformed) to the status of a god is promoted in an infallible way.

But worse yet, bishops are fearful to impose their authority on their priests and parishes. They don't want to alienate those liberal Catholics who have loss their Catholic faith but want the social veneer of the Church and the friendships established there, the promotion of community or the horizontal to a god-like status!

And now we have President Obama's direct attack on what the Church holds sacred as it concerns natural law, thus divine law and we have Catholics and perhaps a majority of Catholics supporting him and electing him to office.

Does this remind you of the infidelity of Israel and her leaders and the Babylonian exile they experienced because they deserved it having abandoned the Covenant God made with them?

Sunday, January 29, 2012

WELL, I JUST DON'T KNOW IF MY CATHOLIC PARISHIONERS ARE LUKE WARM, UNCARING OR ASTOUNDED THAT THEY ARE BEING CALLED TO PLACED CATHOLICSISM ABOVE THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION'S ATTEMPTS TO DO AWAY WITH RELIGIOUS LIBERTY AND FREEDOM OF CONSCIENCE IN THIS COUNTRY! I JUST DON'T KNOW!

The dictator "Joseph Stalin is famously said to have asked an adviser, dismissively, “How many divisions does the Pope have?” Had the adviser possessed greater courage, he might have replied: “How many does he need?”
Observing the many government leaders gathered at the Vatican for the funeral of Pope John Paul II, we might well have suspected that the world’s politico-military chieftains need what the Pope has more than the Pope needs what they have."

Will President Obama find out how many divisions the pope has? Time will tell! Stalin found out!

Well, we're doing it! I read Bishop Gregory Hartmayer's letter, powerful letter to all our Masses this weekend and hopefully it was read in every parish and mission in the Diocese.

No one said a thing, yea or nae. No one! I don't know what to make of the silence. Are they mulling it over or are they ambivalent or are they stark raving mad that the Bishop of our Diocese is issuing a Call to Action, Catholic Action, in the face of an unprecedented attack upon religious liberty and freedom of conscience.

Are the supporters of the Obama administration and those Catholics in my parish who voted for him irate? Do they place their allegiance to the Obama administration and to the Democrat party above that of the Church when clearly there is a insidious attempt on the part of both the administration and the radical wing of the Democrat party to strip the Church of her prophetic mission and make her comply to the dictatorship of their secular view of the United States of America?

Catholics and my parishioners where do you stand? This is a defining moment! In whose division will you belong--you've never before been asked this question as Catholics in the United States of America and that in and of itself should tell you something!

A MODEST ENDORSEMENT OF THE BALTIMORE CATECHISM

I visit our elementary school each Thursday. I spend about 15 minutes with each class. One week I visit the 1st, 2nd and 3rd grades and the next week the 4th, 5th and 6th. We only go to 6th grade, I can't handle kindergarten or pre-kindergarten, I leave that to Fr. Dawid our parochial vicar. He's closer in age to them. So every two weeks I visit the entire school except for K-4 and 5.

This year I've been using the Baltimore Catechism #1 as the source to keep me organized and methodical. In doing so, I've rediscovered it (as this is what I had in elementary school). It has a wonderful structure; is brief and interesting for children elementary age and it has a brief exam after each chapter.

I have found that the illustrations and examples capture the imagination of the children, their religious imagination and they ask wonderful questions during the course of the time I'm there.

But more importantly it is so simple and yet gives a wonderful foundation to our children for them to grow and develop and learn more as they get older and become adults.

But of course we know that many Catholics don't learn more as they get older. And this too is the genius of the Baltimore Catechism. It gives adults who as children learned the catechism something to go on that is foundational, that can remain with them until the Lord calls them to their personal judgment.

While there are some post-Vatican II nuances that I have to add to this pre-Vatican II catechism, these are rather minor and easily accomplished, but very little needs to be changed. After all it is the same Church before and after Vatican II--there is continuity, not rupture.

Almost everyone universally believes that the catechetical materials we have substituted for the Baltimore Catechism have not lived up to what was hoped for. In fact we have two to three generations who are illiterate in the Catholic faith for they did not have the foundational information contained in the Baltimore Catechism nor do these new catechetical materials in any way capture the religious imagination of our young children as the Baltimore Catechism does.

On top of that there are so many materials available that there is little or no consistency. In pre-Vatican II times in America, every Catholic in elementary and high school was taught from the same text book what is foundational for all Catholics to have a least a simple grasp of. All Catholic children in the USA were on the same page and what great unity that brought to us in our Catholic Faith.

On top of that sometimes these new materials give complex religious thought and ideas to our children before they get what is truly succinct and foundational which the Baltimore Catechism does extremely well.

With that said, much more must be built upon the foundation that the Baltimore Catechism gives, but the foundation the Baltimore Catechism gives will support the weight of weightier religious content which should follow. But again, if much more is not recieved by the adult Catholic, at least he will have a foundation given to him from the Baltimore Catechism.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

THE SAD STORY OF SCHISM IN AUSTRIA AND IT SOUNDS VERY FAMILIAR BUT ON THE LEFT OF THINGS DISOBEDIENT TO THE HOLY FATHER, THE BISHOPS AND THE MAGISTERIUM

The schismatic Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre thought he and his movement was more Catholic than the pope.
The schismatic priests in Austria and other European countries think they are more secular than the Episcopalians.

The left's schism is heretical and disobedient; it mocks the sacraments especially Holy Orders and the Mass. The right's schism is not heretical but it is disobedient and creates not unity but division.

A defective way to view morality is choosing the lesser of two evils when the good is present. I would recommend Catholics who dislike the Catholic Church in union with Rome to be disobedient in the form of the right's disobedience. At least it is not necessarily heretical in what counts.

The left's disobedience leaves one scratching one's head. Why not just become Episcopalian? Perhaps the Anglican Communion under the Archbishop of Canterbury should make a Catholic Ordinariate. But what the heck would their liturgy be? I don't think they'd like the Book of Common Prayer too much. But then the Anglicans might allow the Catholic Ordinariate Book of Uncommon and Weird Prayer and Sacraments?

READ THE LEFT'S SAD STORY HERE--IT'S HAPPENED THROUGHOUT THE HISTORY OF THE CHURCH, THANK GOD FOR GREAT SAINTS AND THE INDEFFECTABLITY OF THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH IN UNION WITH THE HOLY FATHER.

ONLY A STRONG CATHOLIC IDENTITY NOT WATERED DOWN BY FALSE ECUMENISM OR LEFT WING SECULARISM OR DISOBEDIENCE TO THE MAGISTERIUM OF THE CHURCH BY RIGHT WING CATHOLICS OPPOSED TO VATICAN II CAN HELP THE CHURCH OF GOD FACE THE ANTI-CATHOLICISM OF THE OBAMA ADMIINISTRATION AND THE WORLD AS JOHN'S GOSPEL UNDERSTANDS THE TERM "WORLD"

Two people refusing to follow the Holy Father allowed themselves to be used, duped and manipulated by President Obama in his bid to divide and conquer the Catholic Church in America in order to promote his socialistic agenda that the Catholic Church opposes. They are complicit in a very serious way in what is happening today with Obama's serious threat to impinge upon Religious Liberty and Freedom of Conscience--they need to publicly repent for the sake of the Catholic Community. They are Fr. John Jenkins, President of Notre Dame University and Sister Carol Kenhan DC, holding the pen that President Obama used to sign his health care law that she gleefully supported in opposition to the American bishops.
My Comments first: What the Holy Father says below is very much tied into Catholic Identity built upon the Church's orthodox faith and our obedient acquiescence to it. As Catholics, the enemy within the Church which is more insidious than the enemies outside the Church, such as the anti-Catholicism of President Obama and his administration, but those within the Church who reject the Church's teaching and traditional faith and are trying to remake the Church according a secular model. These elitist Catholics like what has transpired in the Anglican Communion (Protestant-Episcopal Church in America)which has become very secular and post-Christian, almost Unitarian. We must name who these people are in the clergy and laity of the Catholic Church: they are progressive liberals who hate Humanae Vitae and traditional Catholic moral theology. They are secular democrats who wish to impose upon the Church through civil law a secular model that conforms the Church to the world. Preeminent amongst these so-called Catholics is the Vice President of the United States,Joseph Biden, the former Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi and the current head of Health and Human Services, Katherine Sebelis. We can also include the likes of most in the Kennedy clan. They are Revs. Charles Curran and Hans Kung. They are presidents of some Catholic Universities like Rev. John Jenkins of Notre Dame who poked the bishop of his diocese in the eye by not rescinding an invitation to President Obama who spoke there. That pivotal moment was a victory for the President's anti-Catholic agenda and his desire to divide and conquer the Catholic Church--Fr. Jenkins appeased that and was complicit in it.

We need not fear those new movements in the Catholic Church, who in their enthusiasm and founding years have experimented with the Liturgy and made it more "horizontal and meal like" but at the same time uphold orthodox Catholic faith and morals and obedience to the legitimate authority of the Magisterium of the Church and the Holy Father. Time will purify their "liturgical renewal style." But the leaven they bring to the Church from within and to the world outside is a public witness to their pure Catholic faith and acceptance of the moral teachings of the Church and fidelity to the Magisterium in the areas of faith, morals and Church Law. These new movements embrace Vatican II and Pope Paul VI in two ways that the left and the right in the Church tend to vilify. The left vilifies Humanae Vitae and thus natural law and thus divine law and the right vilifies the renewal of the liturgy and the experimentation that Holy Church allowed in the 1960's and 70's. In vilifying either, these groups vilify the authority of the Church and her Magisterium and thus strive to diminish assent to that authority from within. The two groups are cut from the same cloth. They diminish the true Faith of the Catholic Church and produce for her a "profound crisis."



Year of Faith is Pope's response to 'profound crisis'

Vatican City, Jan 27, 2012 / 01:48 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The upcoming 2012-2013 “Year of Faith” seeks to awaken humanity at a critical moment, Pope Benedict XVI said as he addressed the Church's highest doctrinal office on Jan. 27.

“In vast areas of the earth the faith risks being extinguished, like a flame without fuel,” the Pope told assembled members of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, who met in a plenary session on Friday.

“We are facing a profound crisis of faith, a loss of a religious sense which represents one of the greatest challenges for the Church today.”

Pope Benedict hopes the Year of Faith, which will run from Oct. 11, 2012 to Nov. 24, 2013, will contribute “to restoring God's presence in this world, and to giving man access to the faith, enabling him to entrust himself to the God who, in Jesus Christ, loved us to the end.”

“The renewal of faith,” the Pope announced, “must, then, be a priority for the entire Church in our time.”

His remarks to the doctrinal congregation came two days after the feast of the Conversion of Saint Paul, the final day of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.

The Pope spoke about the quest to reunite all Christians, as he acknowledged that ecumenical efforts had not always served to strengthen believers' faith.

Along with the “many good fruits that have emerged from ecumenical dialogue,” there are also “risks of indifference and of false irenicism” – which give the appearance of unity, without regard for truth.

In today's world, the Pope observed, there is an “increasingly widespread” perception “that truth is not accessible to man, and that, therefore, we must limit ourselves to finding rules to improve this world.”

“In this scenario,” he noted, “faith comes to be replaced by a shallow-rooted moralism,” which can cause the dialogue between Christian groups to become superficial.

“By contrast, the core of true ecumenism is faith, in which man encounters the truth revealed in the Word of God.”

Pope Benedict told officials of the doctrine congregation, the office he led before his election to the papacy, that controversial issues cannot be downplayed or ignored in talks between the Catholic Church and other Christian churches and communities.

Matters of faith and morals, he said, “must be faced courageously, while always maintaining a spirit of fraternity and mutual respect … In our dialogues we cannot overlook the great moral questions about human life, the family, sexuality, bioethics, freedom, justice and peace.”

By defending the Church's authentic tradition, he observed, “we defend man and we defend the creation.”

YOU MAY WISH TO READ FATHER GEORGE RUTLER'S LETTER TO HIS PARISHIONERS CONCERNING THE ANTI-CHRIST BY PRESSING HERE--IT'S ALL TIED TOGETHER.

OBAMA'S ANTI-CATHOLICISM IS PROVOKING TALK OF CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE BY SOME BISHOPS--THIS IS A GREAT TIME TO BE A PRACTICING, BELIEVING AND OBEDIENT CATHOLIC!

A call to action by the Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI to all Catholics in the USA: Pope Benedict XVI has taken note of what is going on on this side of the Atlantic. Last week he told the US bishops on visit to Rome: “it is imperative that the entire Catholic community in the United States come to realize the grave threats [by the Obama administration] to the Church’s public moral witness presented by a radical secularism which finds increasing expression in the political and cultural spheres. The seriousness of these threats needs to be appreciated at every level of ecclesial life.”
My comment first: In the late 1980's Bishop Lessard of the Diocese of Savannah asked me to coordinate a public outdoor Mass for Pax Christi outside the Navel Base at Kingsbay, St. Mary, Georgia where nuclear weapons were brought by train to nuclear subs. Bishop Lessard was joined by Bishop Thomas Gumbleton and the now retired bishop of Richmond, Virginia (whose name escapes me now). There were about 300 protesters from around the country at the Mass outside the fence of this military establishment. After the Mass, the Mass goers staged an act of civil disobedience concerning the nuclear bombs there by lying down in front of the gate and being arrested. Of course I watched from the side-lines. But at that time (and still today)acts of civil disobedience are permissible in Church law if the acts are to encourage the government to change policies that harm people or institutions. Of course there was not unanimous support for this type of civil disobedience at a military base by a broad base of Catholics.

What the Obama administration is trying to do to the Catholic Church is unbelievable in America. Even if I were an atheist I would join in civil disobedience against Obama not because I believe in God, but because I believe in America and the religious freedom this land was built upon and the freedom of conscience.

This is from the Turtle Bay Blog and Beyond. It describes its blog this way: Turtle Bay and Beyond is a blog covering international law, policy and institutions. Our experts - at the UN, European Institutions, and elsewhere - explore an authentic understanding of international law, sovereignty, and the dignity of the human person. We expose those who would seek to impose a radical social vision that is contrary to these principles.

Obama Administration at War With Catholics

Posted on | January 27, 2012 by Stefano Gennarini, J.D. |


The Obama administration is at war with the Catholic Church. It has opened yet another front against the Catholic Church on health insurance coverage by religious employers.

Since last August a guideline in Obama’s health care reform has been in place that will force religious employers to offer their employees health coverage that includes sterilization, abortion-inducing drugs, and contraception. The law goes into effect in August this year. Only churches are exempt from this requirement. This means that schools, hospitals, and other nonprofits are not exempt.

Catholics are the single largest group that will be affected by this order because the Catholic Church holds that contraception, abortion and sterilization are grave moral offenses.

Last week Kathleen Sibelius, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, told other religious employers that they will have one year to comply with the guidelines, even as the Catholic Church hoped the guideline would be altered.

This latest attack follows last December’s decision by the Obama administration to deny funding to Catholic Charities because they do not provide abortion and contraceptive services to victims of human trafficking.

The administration is carrying out this campaign even in the face of indications from the Supreme Court that it is not constitutional. Just this month the Court decided Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church and School v. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in which it upheld by a unanimous vote that religious employers are not subject to the same requirements as all other employers.

Benedict XVI has taken note of what is going on on this side of the Atlantic. Last week he told the US bishops on visit to Rome: “it is imperative that the entire Catholic community in the United States come to realize the grave threats to the Church’s public moral witness presented by a radical secularism which finds increasing expression in the political and cultural spheres. The seriousness of these threats needs to be appreciated at every level of ecclesial life.”

In line with these directives the USCCB has set up a website to decry the Obama Administration’s anti-Catholicism and invite the faithful to action.

Some bishops are already mentioning civil disobedience. Just yesterday Archbishop John J. Myers of Newark issued a letter to his flock urging all the the Catholics in his care to not comply with the health insurance requirement in so far as contraception, sterilization and abortion inducing drugs are concerned.

In the letter Archbishop Myers writes:

We cannot—we will not—comply with this unjust law. People of faith cannot be made second-class citizens. We are already joined by our brothers and sisters of all faiths and many others of good will in this important effort to regain our religious freedom. Our parents and grandparents did not come to these shores to help build America’s cities and towns, its infrastructure and institutions, its enterprise and culture, only to have their posterity stripped of their God given rights. In generations past, the Church has always been able to count on the faithful to stand up and protect her sacred rights and duties. I hope and trust she can count on this generation of Catholics to do the same. Our children and grandchildren deserve nothing less.

Catholics constitute close to one quarter of the US population and are by far the single largest Christian Church in the US. Catholic schools and hospitals have millions of employees. They are a very important part of the electorate. Obama may be only putting himself in a corner by reneging on his promises of strong conscience protections to the Catholics that elected him.

Friday, January 27, 2012

BISHOPS ARE TURNING UP THE HEAT; BUT WHY ARE SO MANY CATHOLICS PASSIVE AND CARELESS ABOUT ASSAULTS ON THEIR CATHOLIC FAITH? POST-VATICAN II MALAISE?

???????

My comments first: Bishops have allowed Catholic institutions to slip into non-Catholic secularism, especially those of higher education, so much so, many Catholic parents having sent their children to these Catholic institution thinking this would reinforce their children's Catholic faith, find out subsequently and hundreds of thousands of dollars later that their children lost their Catholic faith at these centers of higher learning but came out pretty good polemicists for a secularized church that confirms secularized society's standards. The loss of Catholic identity, bishops unwilling or fearful to take disciplinary action and outright dissent against the revealed faith and morals of the Church is met often times with a ho hum attitude by many in the hierarchy which would include priests and deacons of the lowerarchy. Thank goodness that something in our secular society is beginning to galvanize them!

January 27, 2012 From Catholic World News: Bishop blasts secularist intolerance, calls for ‘assertive action’ to defend Church

Noting that “American Catholics have in recent decades become remarkably passive even in the face of relentless hostility from the media, the entertainment industry, and now from some politicians,” Bishop Daniel Jenky of Peoria has issued a pastoral letter on secularism.

The letter, issued on January 8, received a wider audience when it was published in the January 26 issue of Origins.

“The Catholic Diocese of Peoria now exists in a political reality that is increasingly secular in outlook and today is often specifically hostile to the convictions of our Faith,” the bishop wrote. “Atheists and secularists have long realized that the Church of Rome is perhaps the largest single institution that still stands in the way of a completely secularized society. In Illinois where politics are notoriously corrupt and whose governmental agenda is so singularly ineffective, intrenched political power happens to be concentrated in a single region that for generations has been immune to reform. This situation has given determined special interest groups a unique opportunity to impose their views on everyone else as they endeavor to exclude faith from any role in the public forum.”

Bishop Jenky continued:

As your Bishop, I now believe it is critically necessary to raise an alarm among the faithful regarding growing threats to our religious freedom due to the increasing steps toward radical secularization taking place in Illinois. Beside the abrupt exclusion of Catholic Charities from childcare and adoption services and increasing attempts to intimidate Catholic healthcare, I am also concerned about possible future moves that could be made against the independence of our Catholic schools and other public ministries of our Diocese. Eventually it may come to pass that our fidelity to the Gospel of Christ and to Catholic tradition may place us in direct conflict with recent legal definitions of the State of Illinois. There are certainly some in our state whose commitment to [atheistic] secularism is so intense that they may well try to restrict the Church’s role only to the sacristy and sanctuary.

I am especially scandalized by some “Catholic” politicians who willingly collaborate with efforts to restrict the civil liberty of the faith tradition from which they were originally sprung. Many of those in office who were taught to read and write in Catholic schools, now seem entirely indifferent to the consciences of those Catholics who live their faith. On Ash Wednesday, they like to be conspicuous with crosses on their foreheads, but the true Cross of Christ seems far from their hearts and minds. They enjoy parties on March the 17th and wearing green sweaters but in effect are ashamed of Saint Patrick’s unwavering zeal for the Catholic Christianity. They like photo opportunities with the hierarchy, but break their word to them without a moment’s hesitation. They may still use the rituals of Catholicism to mark their happy and sad occasions, but apparently would sell their soul for a vote or a dollar. What does it benefit a person to gain the whole world but lose their soul (Mark 8:36), but eternal loss for the sake of public office in Illinois is an extraordinarily foolish deal with the devil. Such people certainly need our prayers, but they should no longer be able to take our friendship or our support for granted …

Even when our institutions are attacked and our most sacred beliefs held up for scorn, many Catholics sadly remain silent. As your Bishop, it is therefore my duty before God to call faithful Catholics into more assertive action in defense of our religion and those public ministries which we hold to be the work of Christ.

“Loyal believers are called upon not only to defend the Faith but even to defend the very concept of faith in the face of aggressive secularism and increasingly intolerant atheism,” Bishop Jenky concluded. “It now seems to be the unbelievers who apparently hope to initiate some new kind of inquisition designed to entirely exclude God from the public forum. In the face of growing hostility, practicing Catholics need to recognize that the choices we make and the witness we either offer or withhold will have both temporal and eternal consequences for each one of us. Christ the Lord has promised that the gates of hell will not prevail against the Church he founded on the rock of Peter’s faith (Matthew 16:1), but he also warned that at the end of time he will deny those who deny him (cf. Matthew 10:33).”

“Catholicism is filled with enormous spiritual richness, a cohesive intellectual tradition, and a remarkable commitment to charity and service. It is the Faith for which we should be ready and willing to give our hearts and even to offer up our lives. It is also the Faith by which we all certainly will be judged before the throne of Almighty God.”

TO BE READ OR PLACED IN THE BULLETIN AT ALL PARISHES IN THE DIOCESE OF SAVANNAH THIS WEEKEND, JANAUARY 28/29

God bless our new bishop, Bishop Gregory J. Hartmayer, OFM,Conv.


Letter from Bishop Gregory J. Hartmayer
To Be Read at all Masses in Parishes in the Diocese of Savannah
During the Weekend of January 28 – 29, 2012


My dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

I am writing to you on a matter of grave moral concern -- freedom of religion and freedom of conscience. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced last week that almost all employers, including Catholic employers, will be forced to offer their employees health coverage that includes sterilization, abortion-inducing drugs, and contraception. Almost all health insurers will be forced to include those “services” in the health policies they write. And almost all individuals will be forced to buy that coverage as a part of their policies.

In so ruling, the Obama Administration has cast aside the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, denying to Catholics our Nation’s first and most fundamental freedom, that of religious liberty. And as a result, unless the rule is overturned, we Catholics will be compelled either to violate our consciences, or to drop health coverage for our employees (and suffer the penalties for doing so). The Administration’s sole concession was to give our institutions one year to comply.

I stand in unity with Catholic bishops throughout the United States and other religious leaders vowing to fight this mandate.

Along with my brother bishops and other religious leaders, I insist that this is a direct attack on our religious freedom and our First Amendment rights. I will work with the bishops, other religious leaders and our fellow Americans to remove this unjust regulation.

If the Administration will not rescind this violation of our First Amendment rights, we must call on our elected leaders to do so. I ask you to pray that wisdom and justice may prevail, and work together to restore our religious liberty.

Please join me in continuing to follow the development of this important issue and contacting our elected representatives to seek a just resolution.

Through the Southern Cross, diocesan and Georgia Catholic Conference websites and other media, I will keep you up to date on the progress of this important issue.

Sincerely yours in Christ,
╬ Gregory J. Hartmayer, OFM Conv.
Bishop of Savannah

FROM THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

CARDINAL-ELECT TIMOTHY DOLAN LAYS IT OUT AND CLEARLY! PRESS HERE TO READ IT FROM THE WALL STREET JOURNAL

FOR MY TRADITIONAL FRIENDS OF THE LITURGY, BE CAREFUL OF WHAT YOU CRITICIZE

I actually find this altar arrangment and the decorations of the place of worship for the NC Mass very beautiful and devotional and not at all a bad example of "post Vatican II theology" for church buildings and liturgical arrangements. I especially like the size of the altar and its powerful presence in this sanctuary and would note that the Benedictine Altar Arrangement would work marvelously on it because of its massive size:

And for those who despise Pope Paul VI for what they perceive he allowed to happen to the liturgy, please note what Fr. Neil Xavier O’Donoghue, Ph.D. in Liturgy writes to a commenter at the Praytell Blog:

Nicholas, I’m afraid I see openness to life and the renewal of the liturgy in the post-Vatican II period as going hand in hand. Both were primary concerns for Paul VI, and are the two issues that many Catholics today vilify him for (rarely for both, the left does not like Humanae Vitae and the right does not like the Ordinary Form of the liturgy). However it is precisely for the openness to life and the teaching on Family Morality that is imparted by the Neocatechumenal communities that Rome’s Pontifical Lateran University on behalf of the John Paul II Institute bestowed an honorary Doctorate on Kiko Arguello, the initiator of the Neocatechumenal Way in 2009.

YOU MAY READ FATHER O'DONOGHUE'S CRITIQUE OF A CRITIQUE OF THE NW BY PRESSING THIS! I'M IMPRESSED WITH His THEOLOGY AND WOULD AGREE WITH HIM, ESPECIALLY OUR COMMUNION WITH THE HOLY FATHER AND THE CHURCH BUT IN A VARIETY OF LITURGICAL EXPRESSIONS AND SUPPORTING THE HOLY FATHER ESPECIALLY THE TEACHINGS OF HUMANAE VITAE!

AS BUGS BUNNY WOULD SAY, "OF COURSE YOU KNOW THIS MEANS WAR" SPIRITUAL WAR THAT IS

Pray that all bishops will have "backbone" during this time of assault on the Catholic Church
I've never seen our bishops as alarmed and as outspoken about the impending HHS mandate concerning all Catholic institutions being given a year to comply with providing contraception and abortion "care" in our health insurance policies. Fr. Dawid Kwiatkowski our parochial vicar, who is a Polish native and citizen, on hearing about this administration's attempt to interfere with the hiring practicing of the Catholic Church, which fortunately the Supreme Court rejected unanimously, and now the President's betrayal of Catholic leaders and all Catholics with his "one year to comply" mandate for this contraception "care" health insurance coverage, he said, "This president sounds like a communist Polish dictator." Of course they hated the Catholic Church too!

READ BISHOP DAVID ZUBIK'S OF PITTSBURGH LETTER TO HIS DIOCESE, "TO HELL WITH YOU! PRESS HERE"

AND FROM Bishop Alexander K. Sample OF THE DIOCESE OF MARQUETTE, A LETTER TO BE READ AT ALL MASSES IN HIS DIOCESE THIS SUNDAY! PRESS HERE.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

PHOTOS OF THE NEOCATECHUMENAL WAY OF CELEBRATING MASS

UPDATE WITH NEW PICTURES!!!!!!
Future Pope Benedict as then Cardinal Ratzinger celebrating a Neocathecumenal Way Mass!!!!!!
Pope John Paul II celebrating a "NEOCAT WAY" Mass!

The late Archbishop Sambi (papal nuncio) celebrates Mass for the Neocatechumenal Way, press here.

MUSIC, MUSZAC OR CHANT--THAT IS THE QUESTION

The most contentious aspect of the modern liturgy is which style of music to use. Many who are in the know say that it is not appropriate to have music during the Mass that uses "religious words set to a secular style of melody." By this I think we would mean melodies that sound like bar music if you removed the words or Broadway style of singing musicals. There could be other examples too, but I think we could refer to melodies that are meant more for entertaining and listening, rather than worshiping and clearly associated with worship.

Technically the music of the Catholic Mass is not hymnody but rather the singing of all the parts of the Mass that should be sung. This would include the official Introit and Offertory and Communion chants. Normally these are meant to be sung in a "Gregorian Chant" style or some modification of it including Polyphony and in Latin or the vernacular in the OF Mass. But it includes almost every other part of the Mass from the Sign of the Cross to the Credo, Eucharistic Prayer and final Blessing. This would include the singing of the Scriptures and Gospel! How many have heard that happen in an OF Mass?

What should be sung is normally what is not sung but rather an undo emphasis on hymns. Keep in mind though that in the Low EF Mass four hymns can be sung even though not a word of the Mass is sung--Opening, Offertory, Communion and Recessional. In the old days these were hymns borrowed from popular devotions and most Marian hymns so the selections had little or nothing to do with the Mass and the themes of the Scriptures. This is an aberration in the Latin Low Mass, but accepted practice.

At least in the High or Sung Mass of the EF, all that is suppose to be sung is--but it is permissible to do additional anthem. Our practice of a vernacular processional and recessional may or may not have been done in Pre-Vatican II times for the High Mass, but I'm not certain and so what we do here may not be kosher. But certainly additional Latin anthems were always sung at the Offertory and Communion even though these are not prescribed.

But back to the OF Mass as experienced by most and what they hear today in their parishes. The emphasis is on hymns, isn't it? And even the parts of the Mass can be set to secular sounding melodies, but these are more difficult to judge as appropriate or inappropriate. And the sad fact is that so many options of styles of music are incorporated into the Mass no one really realizes that there should be a distinctive style that is a bit more narrow rather than expansive. Most new music or music that is sung today would be better used in non-Mass, non-Liturgical experiences of prayer and popular devotions.

It is also permissible and the norm now that the official chants at the entrance, offertory and communion are totally discarded and legally so and substituted with hymns. Sometimes these hymns are of dubious quality and theology and the appropriateness for Mass may well be questioned, just as one might question the use of exclusively Marian vernacular hymns at an EF low Mass.

At St. Joseph we know chant versions of all the parts of the Mass in the vernacular and two other more modern settings known as the Mass of Creation and The Mass of Sing Praise and Thanksgiving both of which are enthusiastically sung by our congregation. However liturgical purists would show disdain for these secular sounding settings of the Mass.

All our hymns are accompanied by organ and thus are "traditional" in that sense but from a wide variety of sources, pre-Vatican II vernacular hymns, Protestant hymns adapted for Catholic use and modern Catholic hymns.

For over a year though, our cantor chants the official Introit as the Procession begins and segways into the vernacular hymn and the same is true of the Offertory and Communion Antiphons.

We have yet to learn an English Creed, but the days are coming for even that at our choir Mass at 9:30 AM.

Like religion and politics, the style of music in our churches probably should not be debated in polite company.

DIFFERENT RITES, ONE CHURCH

Now this is a reredos with noble simplicity!
This is a "fiddle back" vestment that really isn't, and it's not really Roman, can anyone spell Hispano-Mozarabic rite? Now those who want me to wear fiddle back, ante up and buy me this and I'll wear it!
THE CHALLENGES OF THE NEW ANGLICAN ORDINARIATE.In an interview with Catholic News Service, Father Jeffrey Steenson discussed the challenges he faces as the leader of the recently established Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter. PUSH HERE TO READ ABOUT IT

LIKE CARDINAL-DESIGNATE TIMOTHY DOLAN, EVERY CATHOLIC SHOULD FEEL BETRAYED BY PRESIDENT OBAMA, READ MORE FROM THE USA-TODAY NEWSPAPER


ARCHBISHOP DOLAN AND EVERY CATHOLIC BETRAYED BY PRESIDENT OBAMA, PUSH HERE TO READ USA TODAY ARTICLE

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

A GOOD QUESTION, SISTER MARY ANN WALSH; DOES ANYONE KNOW THE ANSWER?

Two Roman (Roaming) Catholics deformed by the "spirit of Vatican II" catechesis and arrogance:

From Catholic World News: USCCB spokeswoman contrasts HHS treatment of Amish, Catholics
January 25, 2012

In requiring Catholic agencies to provide insurance that covers contraception and sterilization, the Department of Health and Human Services has created an anti-Catholic double standard, according to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ director of media relations.

“Health and Human Services’ recent attacks on freedom of religion show it is deaf to religious sensibilities,” said Sister Mary Ann Walsh. “Even the Administration’s resounding defeat on January 11—when the US Supreme Court unanimously rejected the Administration’s reading of the First Amendment as ‘extreme,’ ‘untenable,’ and having ‘no merit’—couldn’t unplug its ears.”

“This egregious violation of religious freedom marks the first time in our history that the federal government is forcing religious people and groups to ante up for services that violate their consciences,” she continued. “The government allows other religions to live out their beliefs. The Amish and Christian Scientists have a conscientious objection to health insurance, and so the law exempts them from buying it. The government acknowledges the right of these religious groups to live out their religious convictions in US society. Why are beliefs of Catholics and others dismissed?”

My Question: Has anyone heard or seen any news coverage on this rather significant story concerning the current political administration in Washington? I've only seen a brief segment on Fox and Friends and it was very much on the side of the Church.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

THE GRAVITY OF OFFENDING GOD--DO WE CARE ANYMORE ABOUT THAT?


Yesterday as I preached at our Day of Penance Mass marking the anniversary of Roe V. Wade, I had to wonder if the people to whom I was preaching really give a flip about offending God. There were a goodly number of high school students at the Mass.

It seems to me we try to persuade people not to do wrong things because of the secular or emotional or physical consequences to certain action. We want abortion to be illegal and people punished if they break the law.

While all of these are good reasons to not only protect the innocent unborn and those who might choose an abortion or enable one, I still think we need to recover the sense of gravity and the solemn offense God takes when we commit grievous acts of evil and mortal sin. That alone should be sufficient motivation for Catholics and Christians to avoid evil and do good.

How do we recover the sense of sin, the fear of God we should have when offending Him through willful acts of sin and evil? Can we recover that, especially with our young?

Monday, January 23, 2012

WHERE HAVE WE GONE WRONG AND WHAT DO WE DO RIGHT?

PRESS HERE FOR HUMANAE VITAE, A SUMMARY This brief article tells of three bishops conferences in the 1960's (Canadian, Dutch and German)who "tried" to "validly" give a dispensation to this natural law based upon "conscience." The article rebuffs that with the following:
"Catholic Insight's editor: Nota Bene
The “Winnipeg Statement” has no teaching value. Its dispensation is null and void because its authority is flawed.

Two things are necessary for a teaching by a Conference of Bishops to be valid: 1) unanimity of all bishops belonging to the Conference; 2) approval by Rome. (See “The theological and juridical nature of Episcopal conferences”, Apostolic Letter by His Holiness John Paul II, May 21, 1998).

Neither of these conditions was achieved. There was no unanimity – at least six bishops rejected the document. And approval from Rome was neither sought, nor given. The Canadian bishops of the time may be said to have ignored the need for both internal and external collegiality."

If we lived in a perfect world, everyone would read Pope Paul VI encyclical, Humanae Vitae, study it and after having studied it and looked at the world the 1960's produced (affected),we would stand up and cheer for the wisdom of the Holy Father in not giving into the dark forces of unbridled enthusiasm and what man could accomplish on his own through technology and fomenting social change, and go back to the basics in honoring God by being obedient to natural law, divine law and the Magisterium of the Church in the matter of faith and morals, even those teachings, while not always presented in an "infallible way" are nonetheless authoritative and normative for Catholics.

Basically what the Holy Father taught in Humanae Vitae is that natural law reveals divine law and that divine law in imprinted in the very order of creation. Therefore one must understand natural law and honor it and by doing so one honors God. This has ramification for a number of moral teaching, many now evolving in the Church, that pertain to the nature of man, what God has created and what are the limits to man's engineering that changes the moral other because it disregards natural law.

Human sexuality is more than just the pro-creative act. It is that force, if you will, that enables us to love, to go beyond ourselves, to show empathy. It is an energy that is natural and necessary for a holy and whole life.

Why then is genital sex only permitted within the context of marriage? Because there are two aspects to genital sex, erotic love which needs marriage to keep it tame and wholesome and where spouses in the enjoyment and love of one another give each other totally to the other. Does this get corrupted even in marriage? Certainly, a man can use is wife for what he could do perfectly well on his own--there is no love or self-giving only selfish release (and that is why doing it on one's own is considered sinful--it doesn't fulfill the high calling of physical sex--it is selfish). And certainly a wife could use her husband for the same purposes, although somehow I think this is more a man problem than a woman problem, but I could be wrong.

But that brings us to natural law, how the human body is constructed and why certain physical acts and substance contribute to the begetting of new life. Genital sex is also for pro-creation, no two ways about it, in fact the pleasurable aspect is meant to serve the pro-creative aspect since if a man or woman had no sexual desire there would be no pro-creation.

The significance of the married state and in a life-long marriage is to provide a stable environment that is also loving to rear children and teach them the ways of God and prepare them for God's world. Single parenthood while not impossible is not to be preferred to a father and mother in a stable relationship modeling the roles of each gender and teaching through example how to love.

Artificial birth control rules out a significant aspect of what genital sexuality is meant to be. It also turns sex into an athletic endeavor for personal gain and satisfaction. It becomes recreational. It becomes that which it was not intended to be when the power of procreation is made impotent through mechanical devices and medication. It changes the meaning of sex and offend natural law and thus offends God who created all that there is including human sexuality.

Now, if children are seen as a disease, if sex is a recreation and in the course of that recreation an injury occurs and a child is conceived, it only stand to reason that a medical intervention is needed to eliminate the injury--the poor, innocent child that has been conceived because it is natural to conceive during sexual intercourse since it is built into the very nature of the act (natural law).

Only when we honor natural law, use self-discipline to avoid sex outside of marriage, which is also a part of natural law, and view human sexuality as a gift from God to be honored in its very nature, (as God intended) then we will see children as a gift from God to be nurtured and supported and not as a disease that needs to be eradicated. And if a child is conceived that cannot be supported by his or her mother or father, then adoption is the only moral way to "take care of the problem." The problem though is not the child, but the parent or parents who cannot care for the child and for whatever reason.

This is a difficult sell to a world that hates natural law and political systems that despise it even more. But Humanae Vitae is normative for Catholics and its teachings, if embraced, would reduce the number of abortions that Catholics are having. We need to start at home in limiting abortions. It is already "illegal" in Church law, but that has not stopped some Catholics from having abortions. Not until God's law is written in our hearts and we embrace it as a natural part of who we are as Catholics will we return to the normal moral order that is written in natural law.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

THE LARGEST AND MOST EFFECTIVE ECUMENICAL EVENT I'VE EXPERIENCED AS A PRIEST DURING THE WEEK OF PRAYER FOR CHRISTIAN UNITY

Thus far, we estimate that over 2000 souls have come to see the floral arrangements put in place by the flower guilds of 13 churches in the Macon area. The arrangements are truly stunning and those coming through truly appreciative. What a great event for the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity!

From WMAZ TV in Macon:

St. Jospeh Catholic Church hosted its First Annual Old City Flower Festival.

The public got a chance to view flower arrangements done by 14 churches in the Macon area and Warner Robins.

Elaine Schmitt, one of the coordinators of the event says this is a great way to express the love of God.

"People walk in the doors and stand for a minute and try to take it all in, and are just in awe of the beauty of the church," said Schmitt.

"Its overwhelming really to see all this beautiful color and the textures with the beauty of the whole sanctuary," said Brevard Hunt.

Schmitt says its important to have an event like the flower show to help bring the community together.

"Even though the different denominations might have different ideas still everyone has the commonality of loving Jesus and that commonality is what binds us together," said Schmitt.

This week is the start of "Prayer for Christian Unity" which began on January 19th and ends January 25th.

IS POPE BENEDICT "FOUNDING" A NEW FORM OF THE REFORMED MASS AND INSTITUTING IT OR IS HE "AFFECTING" THE FOUNDING OF A NEW FORM OF THE REFORMED MASS WHICH ANOTHER POPE WILL PROMULGATE SIMILAR TO WHAT VATICAN II AFFECTED AND PAUL VI PROMULGATED?

Private Masses at the same time at multiple altars (no concelebration of one Mass)
Mount Calvary Catholic Church (Anglican Usage) former Episcopal Church becoming completely Catholic today, but celebrating the Anglican Use Mass, please note the altar, is this a sign of things to come for the Latin Rite? Also, correct me if I am wrong, but the name "Mount Calvary" must be a first in this country for a Catholic parish as one normally associates this name with Protestant Churches rather than Catholic--does anyone know of any Latin Rite Church in the USA or Canada named "Mount Calvary"?
Anglican Use Catholic Mass today:
As far as I can tell by the comments on this blog, there are here two schools of thought. The first is a very liberal reading of Summorum Pontificum which should force every parish where there is a stable group of parishioners wanting it to have the EF Mass each Sunday at a regularly scheduled time and to even make one of the previous OF Masses an EF Mass. The desire for this stems from a complete dissatisfaction with the OF Mass even when, as it is here, it is celebrated by the books, with all the options available for it and with dignity and solemnity, i.e. all parts sung, incense used and classical vestment and rehearsed "ministers" i.e. altar servers, lectors and EM's.

The second school which I embrace is to understand the allowance of the EF Mass as "extraordinary" meaning there should be a stable group of people who desire it. The question is how often depending on the number who "desire" it regularly. The compromise I have come up with is to provide it weekly on Tuesday as a Low Mass and once a month on Sunday as a High Mass, but at an additional time rather than replacing one of the four Sunday OF Masses. I've also allowed it for certain Holy Days of Obligation and for special occasions, such as The Commemoration of All Souls with a "Concert Mass setting" as well as our Patronal Feast Day of Saint Joseph on March 19th using the concert Mass of Schubert's "Mass in G". I have honored the request for weddings in the EF tradition having celebrated two thus far and Requiems if requested having celebrated one and baptisms in the EF having celebrated two. In other words I am happy to honor requests for the EF form of the Sacraments for Baptisms, Marriages and Funerals.

But a part of the second school of thought is what I believe Pope Benedict intended, in part, by allowing local priests to be able to celebrate the EF on a liberal basis, the mutual enrichment of both forms of the Mass as a two way street. In other words, the EF should not only affect the manner in which the OF Mass is celebrated in a more solemn and choreographed way by "saying the black and doing the red" but the EF should be affected by the manner in which the OF Mass is celebrated when done so properly, i.e Scriptures in English and facing the people, the priest a bit more relaxed and not robotic or rigid in movements (more flexibility in other words).

We can see the Holy Father bringing some of the EF influence to the OF once again--kneeling for Holy Communion and receiving on the tongue, flexibility in choosing vestments and daring to use the Roman style of vestments, insisting even outside of Rome that the preface and Eucharistic Prayer be prayed in Latin (that is new to this Pope and took place a couple of years into his papacy, at first he did pray the preface and Eucharistic prayer in the vernacular even in Rome). At Christmas he allowed the Responsorial Psalm to be sung in the Gradual Form of the EF Mass.

But keep in mind, he also prays the Mass in the vernacular for its other parts and even at St. Peter's when the event is more local, most of the Mass is in Italian. He uses all the Eucharistic Prayers, not just the Roman Canon, although these are prayed in Latin.

Since he has yet to celebrate publicly the EF Mass, we have no idea how he would bring OF sensibilities to it--time will tell if he will celebrate this Mass during his pontificate but not having done so thus far speaks volumes by its absence.

In other words the Holy Father while not "founding" a new form of the Mass is now "affecting" for a later pope to institute in a more formal way some of Pope Benedict's understanding of what a "reform of the reform" Liturgy should look like, feel and be celebrated and it is not a complete return to the EF Mass at all.

Time will tell. Just as we can't say that Jesus Christ founded the Church during His public ministry as we have it today (unless we do so from our faith perspective that He through the Pentecostal Holy Spirit, our Glorious and Risen Lord is always present guiding the Church in all ages through His Body, the Church which He "affected, establish, founded both implicitly and explicitly" during His public ministry)we can't say that Pope Benedict has founded a new Liturgy but he might well be affecting the founding of a new form of the OF Mass in the future.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION WITH THE ASSISTANCE OF TRAITOROUS CATHOLICS IS WAGING WAR ON RELIGIOUS FREEDOM AND THIS IS A SPIRITUAL BATTLE FOR CATHOLICS NOT UNLIKE PAGAN TIMES WITH IMPERIALISTIC GOVERNMENTS MANIPULATING THE CHURCH, BUT OBAMA HAS ALREADY LOST

UPDATED: RETIRED CARDINAL ROGER MAHONEY OF LOS ANGELES ASKS CATHOLICS TO FIGHT THE ADMINISTRATION OF THEIR ATTEMPTS TO SUPPRESS RELIGIOUS LIBERTY AND FREEDOM OF CONSCIENCE, READ IT BY PRESSING HERE! THE GOOD CARDINAL CAN'T TELL US HOW TO VOTE FOR THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, BUT HE CAN TELL US HOW HE IS VOTING AND HE MAKES IT CRYSTAL CLEAR AND I QUOTE: "As Bishops we do not recommend candidates for any elected office. My vote on November 6 will be for the candidate for President of the United States and members of Congress who intend to recognize the full spectrum of rights under the many conscience clauses of morality and public policy. If any candidate refuses to acknowledge and to promote those rights, then that candidate will not receive my vote.

This is a sad moment in the life of our country where religious freedom and freedom of conscience led to the formation of this new Nation under God."


Cardinal-designate Timothy Dolan on HHS Conscience Regulation from Rocco Palmo on Vimeo.

U.S. BISHOPS VOW TO FIGHT HHS EDICT
Fri, 20 Jan 2012 19:57:45 +0000
DATE: January 20, 2012
FROM: Sr. Mary Ann Walsh

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

U.S. BISHOPS VOW TO FIGHT HHS EDICT

Unconscionable to force citizens to buy contraceptives against their will

No change in limited exemption, only delay in enforcement

Matter of freedom of conscience, freedom of religion

WASHINGTON—The Catholic bishops of the United States called “literally unconscionable” a decision by the Obama Administration to continue to demand that sterilization, abortifacients and contraception be included in virtually all health plans. Today’s announcement means that this mandate and its very narrow exemption will not change at all; instead there will only be a delay in enforcement against some employers.

“In effect, the president is saying we have a year to figure out how to violate our consciences,” said Cardinal-designate Timothy M. Dolan, archbishop of New York and president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

The cardinal-designate continued, “To force American citizens to choose between violating their consciences and forgoing their healthcare is literally unconscionable. It is as much an attack on access to health care as on religious freedom. Historically this represents a challenge and a compromise of our religious liberty."

The HHS rule requires that sterilization and contraception – including controversial abortifacients – be included among “preventive services” coverage in almost every healthcare plan available to Americans. “The government should not force Americans to act as if pregnancy is a disease to be prevented at all costs,” added Cardinal-designate Dolan.

At issue, the U.S. bishops and other religious leaders insist, is the survival of a cornerstone constitutionally protected freedom that ensures respect for the conscience of Catholics and all other Americans.

“This is nothing less than a direct attack on religion and First Amendment rights,” said Franciscan Sister Jane Marie Klein, chairperson of the board at Franciscan Alliance, Inc., a system of 13 Catholic hospitals. “I have hundreds of employees who will be upset and confused by this edict. I cannot understand it at all.”

Daughter of Charity Sister Carol Keehan, president and chief executive officer of the Catholic Health Association of the United States, voiced disappointment with the decision. Catholic hospitals serve one out of six people who seek hospital care annually.

“This was a missed opportunity to be clear on appropriate conscience protection,” Sister Keehan said.

Cardinal-designate Dolan urged that the HHS mandate be overturned.

“The Obama administration has now drawn an unprecedented line in the sand,” he said. “The Catholic bishops are committed to working with our fellow Americans to reform the law and change this unjust regulation. We will continue to study all the implications of this troubling decision.”

SAINT JOSEPH CHURCH'S WEEK OF PRAYER FOR CHRISTIAN UNITY, OLD CITY FLOWER FESTIVAL, MAKES THE FRONT PAGE OF THE MACON TELEGRAPH!

You can read the front page article on THE OLD CITY FLOWER FESTIVAL in the Macon Telegraph by pressing this sentence. The pictures below are more that I took with my iPhone in dim lighting. I'm sure there will be some professional pictures that I can post later.







Friday, January 20, 2012

TO STIR THE EF POT AND CONTROVERSY EVEN MORE, READ THIS

The sole purpose of a "Reform of the reform" (Copied from the Rorate Caeli Blog, my comments below it)
From the interview granted by Prof. Roberto de Mattei, author of Il Concilio Vaticano II: una storia mai scritta (The Second Vatican Council – a never before written history), to Austrian Catholic website Kath.net:

[Kath.net]There is no renewal of the Church without a true liturgical renewal. What is the meaning, in your view, of the liturgy in the extraordinary form of the Roman Rite which, with the motu proprio Summorum Pontificum, once again enjoys full right of citizenship in the Church? Is it truly "a twofold use of the save and only Rite" (Benedict XVI, Letter on the publication of "Summorum Pontificum", July 7, 2007) or should the "form" that today is "ordinary" be considered a "phase" of that return to the origins in which the true future is found?

[De Mattei] The Holy Sacrifice is truly one, but the "Novus ordo" of Paul VI is, it seems to me, profoundly different, in spirit and in form, from the ancient Roman Rite. In this last Rite, I see not the past, but the future of the Church. Traditional liturgy is in fact the most efficacious response to the challenge of secularism, that attacks us.

Benedict XVI gave full citizenship back to the ancient Roman Rite. I am certain that it will go through a new development and a new splendor in the Church and in society. The "Reform of the Reform" which is mentioned makes sense and is worthy only as a "transition" of the "novus ordo" towards the traditional rite, and not as a pretext for the abandonment of the latter, that must be kept in its integrity and purity.

The essential question seems to me, though, that of recovering a theological and ecclesiological vision founded upon the dimension of transcendent and the holy. This means that it is necessary to reconquer the fundamental principles of Catholic theology, beginning with a precise view of the holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

It is further necessary that the idea of sacrifice shall permeate society in the shape, quite forgotten today, of a spirit of sacrifice and penance. This, and not anything else, is the "experience of sacredness" of which our society has urgent need. Without it, it is hard to imagine a return to an authentic Liturgy that has at its center the adoration owed to the one true God.

PRESS THIS TO READ FROM THE BLOG CHIESA ON "BENEDICT THE REFORMER" FOR A DIFFERENT SLANT ON ALL OF THIS AND THE CAMP THAT I WOULD MOST LIKELY ENDORSE, SINCE I'M A PAPIST AND ULTRAMONTANE!


MY COMMENTS: "The correct understanding of the Council – the instructions for the Year of Faith specify – is not what is called the "hermeneutic of discontinuity and rupture," but what Benedict XVI has called "the hermeneutic of reform, of renewal in the continuity of the one subject-Church."

The Catholic Church prior to the Second Vatican Council was in need of reform and updating as it confronted and ministered to a very different world than that of the period of the Council of Trent which had dramatically shaped the Catholic Church of the 500 year period, in addition to the Church's reaction to the Protestant Reformation and anti-Catholic ideologies.

But what many now say the Second Vatican Council never intended is what has led to an even more urgent reform of the Post Vatican II Church but again going back to the Council of Trent, The First Vatican Council and yes, and most importantly The Second Vatican Council.

In reality the "Spirit of the Second Vatican Council" a spirit of rupture with the past not only in liturgy, but in the understanding of the Catholic Church herself, her priesthood, her laity and her spirituality and piety that flowed from a Catholic Culture that in many ways was universal in all the Catholic world although with variation in piety and devotions, was totally dismantled, torn down and only a remnant of her former self remained.

There has been rebuilding to be sure, but the new edifice is a shadow of her former self and glory.

One of the things that reformers lambasted about the Pre-Vatican II Church was her triumphalism. That may have been true, but it evolved from a very high Christology and the worship due to Christ and our unworthiness in His presence that led to silence in Churches, and a humble piety that was self-deprecating. All that changed with the 1960's and a jamboree attitude toward the Church, the Liturgy and her devotions and spirituality.

As well the great discipline of the Church in terms of prayer, fasting and almsgiving was nearly tossed out the window. Gone were meatless Fridays, Ember Days and a rigid Lenten season that only the strong could survive. Gone were indulgences, harsh penances and a strict Catholic piety at home, the praying of the Rosary was ridiculed as were all other devotions. The Mass became a mere shadow of its former self and church buildings were raped and reconfigured according to a flimsy theology and new churches looked cold and empty.

All this must be reformed and older and more time-tested forms of Mass and spirituality must be recovered and is being recovered, but it will take another 50 years or more.