Wednesday, October 4, 2017

WHAT ROLE DOES THE DEVIL HAVE IN THE MASS MURDERS WE EXPERIENCE THROUGH TERRORISM AND FROM MAD MEN IN THE USA?


Pope Francis is doing the Church and the world a great good by once again recovering the Church's teaching on the influence of Satan on disordered human beings. Ralph Martin has said, "Pope Francis, after perhaps too many years of a disproportionate silence about the devil, seems to be restoring the balance in his frequent comments on the reality of the devil without a sensationalist preoccupation."

As Catholics, we know the devil can tempt us to use our free will to rebel against God, to be disobedient to the laws of God. But we know too, that the influence of Satan can cause us to become minions of the devil robbed of our free will through demonic oppression or possession. Our free will is a gift from God, a gift that the devil hates and he tries to take from us in order to control us.

The devil enters where we are weakest, in our disorders and our disordered affections. It is there that he can wreck the most havoc on our lives and the lives of others.

It is said that the mass murderer in Las Vegas became a dark, horrible person when he was drinking. While we do not know if he was intoxicated at the time of his mass shooting, certainly Satan could enter into the hole of this disordered reaction to alcohol and manipulate this shooter into doing his demonic deeds as though he was a robot of the devil completely under his influence and devoid of free will that could combat this take over.

Someone once wrote that an increasing number of people, including Catholics, no longer see the risks of experimenting with the occult or even Satanism. Sometimes this is masked by godless secularism, itself influenced by Satan.

More and more God and religion is shunted from the public square. Satan takes delight over his influence in this area for it opens people to his power and ability to rob them of the great gift of free will. And thus he controls them to do his demonic deeds.


25 comments:

Anonymous said...

One thing about these mass shootings---you never typically hear that (as examples) "the perpetrator is a deacon at the First Baptist Church, sings in the choir, teaches Sunday School or RCIA"...in other words, active church-going folk are not behind the massacres of today. It does not mean, of course, that active churchgoers don't sin---of course we all do---but they typically are not the sins that would make the morning news (murder, armed robbery, burglary) or done with deliberate intention. I recall years ago too, a sermon (one of those Baptist ministers on cable) mentioning that divorce rates are much lower among active churchgoers than those who don't.

In Atlanta overnight, two persons were robbed at gunpoint, one shot three times, trying to change a flat tire in the wee hours of this morning (not too far from Interstate 85)...somehow I suspect the masked men behind it were not frequent churchgoers.......


Mark Thomas said...

With Father McDonald's permission...Part 1 of 2.

Pope Francis has referenced Satan repeatedly during the Holy Father's pontificate.

During the Holy Father's first two years alone as Roman Pontiff, His Holiness Pope Francis issued the following references to Satan:

https://churchpop.com/2014/10/07/13-pope-francis-quotes-oldest-foe-devil/

======================================

-- “When one does not profess Jesus Christ, one professes the worldliness of the devil.”

First homily, 3/14/2013 A.D.
======================================

“The Prince of this world, Satan, doesn’t want our holiness, he doesn’t want us to follow Christ. Maybe some of you might say: ‘But Father, how old fashioned you are to speak about the devil in the 21st century!’ But look out because the devil is present! The devil is here… even in the 21st century! And we mustn’t be naïve, right? We must learn from the Gospel how to fight against Satan.”

Homily on 4/10/2014 A.D.
======================================

-- “[The Devil] attacks the family so much. That demon does not love it and seeks to destroy it. […] May the Lord bless the family. May He make it strong in this crisis, in which the devil wishes to destroy it.”

Homily, 6/1/2014 A.D.
======================================

-- “It is enough to open a newspaper and we see that around us there is the presence of evil, the Devil is at work. But I would like to say in a loud voice ‘God is stronger.’ Do you believe this, that God is stronger?”

General audience, 6/12/2013 A.D.
======================================

-- “Let us ask the Lord for the grace to take these things seriously. He came to fight for our salvation. He won against the devil! Please, let us not do business with the devil! He seeks to return home, to take possession of us… Do not relativize; be vigilant! And always with Jesus!”

Homily, 11/8/2013 A.D.
======================================

-- “The presence of the devil is on the first page of the Bible, and the Bible ends as well with the presence of the devil, with the victory of God over the devil.”

Homily, 11/8/2013 A.D.
======================================

-- “Either you are with me, says the Lord, or you are against me… [Jesus came] to give us the freedom… [from] the enslavement the devil has over us… On this point, there are no nuances. There is a battle and a battle where salvation is at play, eternal salvation. We must always be on guard, on guard against deceit, against the seduction of evil.”

Homily, 10/11/2013 A.D.
======================================

Pax.

Mark Thomas

Mark Thomas said...

With Father McDonald's permission...Part 2 of 2.

Pope Francis has referenced Satan repeatedly during the Holy Father's pontificate.

During the Holy Father's first two years alone as Roman Pontiff, His Holiness Pope Francis issued the following references to Satan:

https://churchpop.com/2014/10/07/13-pope-francis-quotes-oldest-foe-devil/

======================================

-- “The devil plants evil where there is good, trying to divide people, families and nations. But God… looks into the ‘field’ of each person with patience and mercy: he sees the dirt and the evil much better than we do, but he also sees the seeds of good and patiently awaits their germination.”

Homily, 7/20/2014 A.D.
======================================

-- “The devil cannot stand seeing the sanctity of a church or the sanctity of a person, without trying to do something.”

Homily, 5/7/2014 A.D.
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-- “Note well how Jesus responds [to temptation]: He doesn’t dialogue with Satan, as Eve did in the terrestrial Paradise. Jesus knows well that one can’t dialogue with Satan, because he is so cunning. For this reason, instead of dialoguing, as Eve did, Jesus chooses to take refuge in the Word of God and to respond with the power of this Word. Let us remind ourselves of this in the moment of temptation…: not arguing with Satan, but defending ourselves with the Word of God. And this will save us.”

Angelus address, 3/9/2014 A.D.
======================================

-- “We too need to guard the faith, guard it from darkness. Many times, however, it is a darkness under the guise of light. This is because the devil, as saint Paul, says, disguises himself at times as an angel of light.”

Homily, 1/6/2014 A.D.
======================================

-- “Behind every rumor there is jealousy and envy. And gossip divides the community, destroys the community. Rumors are the weapons of the devil.”

Homily, 1/23/2014 A.D.
======================================

-- “Let us always remember… that the Adversary wants to keep us separated from God and therefore instills disappointment in our hearts when we do not see our apostolic commitment immediately rewarded. Every day the devil sows the seeds of pessimism and bitterness in our hearts. … Let us open ourselves to the breath of the Holy Spirit, who never ceases to sow seeds of hope and confidence.”

Speech, 6/18/2013 A.D.
======================================

Pax.

Mark Thomas

John Nolan said...

The only excuse the Las Vegas mass-murderer could possibly have had was that he was a music-lover. So am I, yet I do not have legal access to an arsenal of military weapons and a seemingly unlimited supply of ammunition for them.

An interest in weaponry of all kinds is normal; an unhealthy obsession with firearms is not. Those who quote the Second Amendment are missing the point. The right to bear arms was already enshrined in common law, although in England it was circumscribed to an extent by the Game Laws which did not apply in the Americas.

Nor could the Founding Fathers have anticipated the awesome power of modern weapons.

In Germany they claim the right to drive as fast as they like on the Autobahnen (unless a lower limit is in force). They are prepared to accept higher casualties than on similar roads in the rest of Europe. However, if these were as comparatively disproportionate as are the number of firearms fatalities in the US, they would have no hesitation in imposing a 130 km speed limit.

Even Fr Z drools over firearms almost as much as he does over food; I find the latter excusable, but the former, in a man of the cloth, puzzling to say the least.

rcg said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
rcg said...

There are plenty of laws to limit people that might do harm whether with firearms or automobiles or scalples. We are prevented from acknowledging the obvious due to a social bind that makes a god of the state and a saint of the insane. It is nearly impossible that this jerk has never betrayed his inclinations but that we were forced to be blind to them

ByzRC said...

Mark Thomas,

A better characterization of Fr Z is that he drool over matters of spirituality, enjoys a good meal and has a sportsmans interest in weapons. I chuckle at his tongue-in-cheek quips on biretta v Beretta.

As for puzzling, the way you drool over Pope Francis is certainly up there.

John Nolan said...

ByzRC

The comment about Fr Z was mine, not Mark Thomas's, and was also tongue-in-cheek. When he visits England he only brings his biretta. In the US missal and missile are homophones, which is a source of wonderment to us Brits. I was once perplexed by an American academic who kept using the term 'feudal'. It then dawned on me that he meant 'futile'. The -ile suffix always rhymes with 'mile'.

I say tomato and you say tomato ... doesn't quite work in print ...

Anonymous said...

Bee here:

When I was a kid I imagined Satan as the manlike creature in red tights with horns with a goatee, a long tail, holding a pitchfork. Who wouldn't see something like that coming a MILE away?

Then in my young adult years I read The Screwtape Letters and saw the devil's wiles are more tricky than I at first supposed, but still, I thought it was pretty easy to spot such things a mile away.

But then as the years have passed and I observed my own life and the lives of those around me, it has become so very evident the long game the devil plays, and how he often slowly boils the frog, day by day, slowly leading astray, bit by bit. Maybe it's a love of beautiful things and worldly goods he exploits. Maybe it's love of family and sensitivity he exploits, preventing parents from disciplining their children. Maybe it's a fear of being alone or of being poor or of being a social outcast he exploits, causing one bad choice, then another, then another. Maybe it's a love of the good that he exploits, driving someone near mad over the injustice he perceives as it continues and seems to be increasing, at the increase in evil, inciting him to take matters into his own hands and pick up a gun and shoot those he blames for the wrong he sees.

When I was younger and I read things like, "The devil hates you, and is full of malice toward you and is in warfare to destroy your soul." I thought it was hyperbole and thought light of it. But when you know the 50 or 60 or 70 year story of the lives of those around you, and you see how unchecked sin produced awful outcomes, it is so easy to see how their weaknesses were used against them, how they rationalized or justified or minimized the wrong they did, leading them from possibly reversible evils to more terrible situations, and often more sinful and awful and irreversible outcomes. Looking at all of that, it's easy to believe in the devil, and in demons, and their charming smooth subtle ways that offer something good to the little fish who fails to see the hook and line attached.

It occurred to me one time that it takes a long time to build something. It takes a long time for a tree to grow to full size. It takes a long time to build a skyscraper. It takes a long time to a child to grow up into an adult and have a family. But it takes only a tiny bit of time to destroy. A tree that took 30 years to grow is cut down in an hour, With explosives a building that took 2 years to build can be blown up in 2 minutes. With a bullet, a life can be extinguished in a second.

It takes time and lots of energy to build or create. It takes hardly any effort to destroy. The devil never creates or builds. He only destroys.

So what is the role of the devil in terrorism or mass murders? The role of puppet master. Insidious. Subtle. Deadly.

God bless,
Bee

Mark Thomas said...

ByzRC said..."As for puzzling, the way you drool over Pope Francis is certainly up there."

God commands me to treat His Holiness Pope Francis, a child of God, with great charity. As a Catholic, the love and obedience that I have for Pope Francis is not puzzling to me.

In my family, the Catholic Way is to embrace the Roman Pontiff with profound love and respect.

I will stick to that which my parents handed down to me in regard to the manner in which I was taught to love and obey the Pope. With God's grace I will remain attached unwaveringly to, and will continue to "drool over," the august Vicar of Christ.

May God grant His Holiness Pope Francis many happy and blessed years.
===================================================================

Pope Saint Pius X:

"The Pope is the guardian of dogma and of morals; he is the custodian of the principles that make families sound, nations great, souls holy; he is the counsellor of princes and of peoples; he is the head under whom no one feels tyrannized because he represents God Himself; he is the supreme father who unites in himself all that may exist that is loving, tender, divine.

"When one loves a person, one tries to adhere in everything to his thoughts, to fulfill his will, to perform his wishes. And if Our Lord Jesus Christ said of Himself, "si quis diligit me, sermonem meum servabit," [if any one love me, he will keep my word - Jn xiv, 23] therefore, in order to demonstrate our love for the Pope, it is necessary to obey him.

"Therefore, when we love the Pope, there are no discussions regarding what he orders or demands, or up to what point obedience must go, and in what things he is to be obeyed; when we love the Pope, we do not say that he has not spoken clearly enough, almost as if he were forced to repeat to the ear of each one the will clearly expressed so many times not only in person, but with letters and other public documents;

"we do not place his orders in doubt, adding the facile pretext of those unwilling to obey - that it is not the Pope who commands, but those who surround him; we do not limit the field in which he might and must exercise his authority; we do not set above the authority of the Pope that of other persons, however learned, who dissent from the Pope, who, even though learned, are not holy, *******because whoever is holy cannot dissent from the Pope."*********************

Pax.

Mark Thomas

Anonymous said...

Mark, if the pope said that there are four persons in the Godhead instead of three, would someone holy be able to dissent from the pope? If so, why?

Mark Thomas said...

Anonymous, Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ has guaranteed that "in the Apostolic See the Catholic Religion has always been preserved immaculate."

Jesus Christ protects his Vicar (the Roman Pontiff) from the promulgation of heretical teachings.

Therefore, Anonymous, you can rest assured in your union with the Church of Rome. The Church of Rome will not lead you into heresy.

Rome has preserved the Catholic Religion immaculate.

Thank you.

Pax.

Mark Thomas

Anonymous said...

Mark, can you tell me where the Church teaches that the pope will never state an erroneous opinion such as the example I gave above at 11:28 AM?

Mark Thomas said...

Anonymous, are you talking about the Pope declaring heresy during the exercise of his official role as teacher, governor, and sanctifier of the Holy People of God?

That is, to employ your example, that the Pope would teach publicly that there are four persons of the Godhead?

Thank you.

Pax.

Mark Thomas

Mark Thomas said...

Anonymous, has the Church of Rome promulgated false teachings?

Do the Faithful have the right to judge as false then, in turn, reject, the Church of Rome's teachings?

Pax.

Mark Thomas

Anonymous said...

Mark, I'm asking you a simple question: if the pope said that there are four persons in the Godhead instead of three, would someone holy be able to dissent from the pope?

You are conflating the Church of Rome with the person of the pope. I am not asking whether the Church of Rome can or has promulgated false teaching. I am asking whether a holy person could dissent from a particular pope if he were to say that there are four persons in the Godhead instead of three.

I understand why you're asking for more specifics for this hypothetical, but those distinctions shouldn't matter given your blanket assertion that no holy person can dissent from a pope. You are not qualifying that assertion and so there is no need to qualify the hypothetical.

Mark Thomas said...

Anonymous said..."I understand why you're asking for more specifics for this hypothetical, but those distinctions shouldn't matter given your blanket assertion that no holy person can dissent from a pope."

It is not my "blanket assertion that no holy person can dissent from the pope." That assertion belongs to august Roman Pontiffs.
=====================================================

Anonymous said..."Mark, I'm asking you a simple question: if the pope said that there are four persons in the Godhead instead of three, would someone holy be able to dissent from the pope?"

Anonymous, please understand that I am not very intelligent. Therefore, to make sure that I understand your simple question, I ask the following in honest, simple fashion:

In regard to your example, the Pope did not act in his official capacity of teacher, governor, and sanctifier of the Holy People of God. Correct?

Your example may be akin to Pope Benedict XVI's 2007 A.D. book entitled Jesus of Nazareth: From the Baptism in the Jordan to the Transfiguration.

Pope Benedict XVI declared via his book's introduction that his treatise is in "no way an exercise of the magisterium." Instead, his book is an "expression of his personal search for the face of the Lord."

The above applies to your question/point. The Pope in your example did not engage in the exercise of the Magisterium. Correct? The Pope in your example, akin to Pope Benedict XVI's book in question, expressed a mere personal opinion.

The Pope in your example acted in non-binding-upon-the-Faithful, non-Magisterial fashion. Correct? Therefore, the issue of dissention from official Papal teaching does not pertain to your example.

Thank you.

Pax.

Mark Thomas

Anonymous said...

Mark, let’s assume for purposes of the hypothetical that, prior to making the statement in question, the pope said that the matter under discussion was not something that required magisterial intervention. Then, the pope goes one to state that there are four persons in the Godhead and not three. Let’s assume these statements are in writing in some sort of letter or are otherwise published by the Vatican.

ByzRC said...

Anonymous @ 5:50 -

To foster unity within the Church and, in an attempt to untie the knots of Mark Thomas, perhaps you should consider posing your question in the form of a Dubia. Aim for a "Yes" or, "No" answer without argument.

Mark - I'm just playin but, would love to hear you give the answer I think you are trying to avoid.

Mark Thomas said...

Anonymous, please understand that I was serious when I said that I'm not very intelligent. Therefore, my lack of intelligence has left me confused in regard to your questions.

Anonymous, this is my understanding of your (original) point:

-- The Pope, rather than have acted in his official capacity as Pope, offered merely his "opinion" in regard to "X."

-- The Pope did not exercise his Magisterium...again, he expressed merely his opinion in regard to "X."
/
Anonymous, you have added to your initial point. Today, your added the following:

"Mark, let’s assume for purposes of the hypothetical that, prior to making the statement in question, the pope said..."

Does that constitute a, if you will, pre-point point? :-)

Again, as I'm not very intelligent, please make the following clear to me in regard to your initial/expanded point:

Has the Pope expressed his mere opinion? Or, do you have the Pope as having exercised his Magisterial Authority?

Please inform me as to the manner in which the Pope acted...a mere opinion, or as having invoked his Magisterial Authority as the Faithful's teacher, governor, and sanctifier?

Anonymous, thank you. Peace and good health be with you and your family.

Pax.

Mark Thomas


Please pray for Bishop Fellay, who is keen to "correct" the Vicar of Christ, Pope Francis. Since at least 1988 A.D., Holy Mother Church has offered merciful correction to Bishop Fellay to restore him to full-communion with the Church.

Bishop Fellay, who "corrected" His Holiness Pope Francis, has rejected Holy Mother Church's merciful correction in question.

Anonymous said...

Mark, let’s try this a different way. Are you implying that a holy person can dissent from the pope when the pope makes a non-magisterial statement or gives a non-magisterial opinion?

Mark Thomas said...

Anonymous said..."Mark, let’s try this a different way. Are you implying that a holy person can dissent from the pope when the pope makes a non-magisterial statement or gives a non-magisterial opinion?"

Hello. I hope that you and your family are well.

Anonymous, a Pope's mere personal opinion is not Magisterial. Correct? But in matters of faith and morals — when the Pope exercises his God-given authority to teach, govern, and sanctify the Holy People of God — we are to submit to the Pope. Correct?

=========================================================
Vatican II:

"In matters of faith and morals, the bishops speak in the name of Christ and the faithful are to accept their teaching and adhere to it with a religious assent.

"This religious submission of mind and will must be shown in a special way to the authentic magisterium of the Roman Pontiff, even when he is not speaking ex cathedra; that is, it must be shown in such a way that his supreme magisterium is acknowledged with reverence, the judgments made by him are sincerely adhered to, according to his manifest mind and will.

"His mind and will in the matter may be known either from the character of the documents, from his frequent repetition of the same doctrine, or from his manner of speaking."
=============================================================

During an interview granted by Pope Francis, I recall his having expressed a mere opinion on an issue. His Holiness Pope Francis declared that he had offered merely his opinion...he declared that his opinion on the issue in question was not Magisterial teaching.

Pope Francis made it clear that when a Pope offers a mere personal opinion, that the Pope speaks, if you will, as a private citizen. The Pope, when offering a mere personal opinion, does not exercise his role as the Faithful's teacher, governor, and sanctifier.

Anonymous, a Pope's personal opinion is not binding upon the Faithful. Correct?

Suppose that Pope Francis said that in his opinion, blue is the most beautiful color. Is a Catholic required to accept that blue is the most beautiful color? No. A Catholic is not required to believe that blue is the most beautiful color. Said declaration by the Pope is not official Church teaching. Correct?

A Catholic is free to reject a Pope's mere personal opinion. Popes have made that clear.

Conversely, a Catholic is required to submit to the Pope when he exercises his Supreme Magisterium in regard to matters that pertain to faith and morals.

That is the teaching of Holy Mother Church.

When Pope Francis speaks in his official capacity as my teacher, governor, and sanctifier, then I most happily submit to his God-given awesome authority over me.

I do so with joy and unwavering confidence as I know for sure that, thanks to the promise of Jesus Christ, "in the Apostolic See the Catholic Religion has always been preserved immaculate."

Pax.

Mark Thomas

Please pray for Asia Bibi, who is our persecuted sister in Jesus Christ.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asia_Bibi_blasphemy_case

Anonymous said...

Mark, based on what you’ve said, then, tell me which portion of this syllogism is incorrect:

1. A holy person can dissent from the pope when he teaches in a non-magisterial manner.

2. Amoris Laetitia is a non-magisterial papal teaching.

3. Therefore, a holy person can dissent from Amoris Laetitia.

Mark Thomas said...

Anonymous,

Hello. Why would a Catholic dissent from Amoris Laetitia, which is filled with beautiful Church teachings to uplift Catholic family life? Besides, Amoris Laetitia is not Pope Francis' mere personal opinion.

Amoris Laetitia isn't akin to Pope Francis having said..."blue is the most beautiful"...that is, a Pope expressing a mere personal opinion about this or that.

Anonymous, in regard to the level of authority attached to his Apostolic Exhortations, Pope Francis said:

"Look, I wrote an encyclical — true enough, it was by four hands [with Benedict XVI] — and an apostolic exhortation...that’s magisterium."

Even Rorate Caeli acknowledged the following in regard to Amoris Laetitia:

-- Amoris Laetitia is "non-magisterial"? Not so fast ...

https://rorate-caeli.blogspot.com/2016/04/amoris-laetitia-is-non-magisterial-not.html

==============================================================

Anonymous, in regard to your declaration: "Therefore, a holy person can dissent from Amoris Laetitia."

Each Catholic diocese on earth has accepted and promoted Amoris Laetitia as official Catholic teaching. That certainly is the case within my diocese.

My diocese has accepted and enacted Amoris Laetitia as Magisterial. Therefore, as a Catholic, I am called to accept (I do so happily) Amoris Laetitia as official Catholic teaching.

I will obey my bishop in regard to Amoris Laetitia. That is, as he has instructed his subjects, of which I'm one, to accept Amoris Laetitia as Magisterial, I will obey my bishop in that regard.

I do not dissent from Amoris Laetitia. I have neither the right nor desire to dissent from Amoris Laetitia.

Thank you.

Pax.

Mark Thomas

Anonymous said...

Mark, an encyclical and an apostolic exhortation aren’t the same thing so your analysis is flawed insofar as you conflate them. Also Amoris Laetitia itself says that it isn’t magisterial (see paragraph 3).

I’m not debating whether a Catholic should dissent from Amoris Laetitia. I’m trying to show you that a holy person can dissent from Francis’s ideas set forth in Amoris Laetitia. Such dissent is clearly possible given the major and minor premises of the syllogism I proposed above. That you take issie with th the conclusion without disproving either premise indicates you aren’t willing to follow logic on this topic, for whatever reason.

Since you aren’t willing to follow logic, there’s no point discussing it further. Happy Sunday!