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Monday, June 24, 2024

NO MATTER WHAT RITE, STYLE OR MANNER OF CELEBRATING THE HOLY SACRIFICE OF THE MASS, THE MASS IS THE MASS AND CHRIST THE RISEN LORD IS MADE PRESENT/MANIFEST AS IN A NEW EPIPHANY! UNFORTUNATELY, LITURGICAL ELITISTS IN THE VATICAN DON’T GET IT!

 On Sunday I celebrated the 7 AM Modern Mass at St. Gregory the Great—all spoken, no music, full church and out in 40 minutes! It’s called the “Golfer’s Mass!” Then I went to Savannah for the 1 PM Traditional Latin Mass, all sung, all the bells and smells and it took one hour and 10 minutes. But time flies in eternity!

These are the photos of the TLM at Sacred Heart Church in Savannah:
















TONE DEAFNESS ANYONE?

 


I have to say that I am conflicted about destroying artwork because the artist is or was a depraved serial sex fiend. 

But, what the Vatican press official said about Rupnick and his art really shows the tone deafness of so many in the Vatican and elsewhere. The Rupnick affair, along with the McCarrick affair and other affairs of abuse of the most depraved kind by clerics sworn to chaste celibacy seem to get a pass, but anyone wanting the liberal celebration of the Ancient Use of the Latin Rite are demonized as cultists and even worse and the Vatican tries to stamp that out while praising Jesuit Father James Martin. It truly is the upside down, inside out Church, no?

Press the title for the opinion piece:

Ruffini’s disastrous Friday points to wider, deeper problems in the Vatican

Friday was a very bad day for Dr. Paolo Ruffini, Prefect of the Dicastery for Communication, but Ruffini ought not to be the sole or even the primary focus of attention.

BOMBSHELL!

 


Archbishop Gänswein appointed Apostolic Nuncio to Baltic States

Pope Francis appoints Archbishop Georg Gänswein as Apostolic Nuncio to Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia.

By Vatican News

A statement on Monday released by the Holy See Press Office said Pope Francis has appointed Archbishop Georg Gänswein, Titular Archbishop of Urbisaglia, and Prefect Emeritus of the Papal Household, as Apostolic Nuncio to Lithuania, Estonia, and Latvia.

Archbishop Gänswein, who is 67, served as Pope Benedict XVI’s private secretary during his entire pontificate and retirement.

In December 2012, Pope Benedict XVI also appointed him Prefect of the Pontifical Household. He was ordained as archbishop in January 2013.

He continued to hold both positions after Benedict resigned from the papacy about seven weeks later, in February 2013. For about seven years, Archbishop Gänswein served both Pope Francis and Pope Emeritus Benedict.

Until last year, the Apostolic Nuncio in the three Baltic countries was Archbishop Petar Rajič, a Canadian of Bosnian-Croatian origin, who was appointed by the Holy Father, on March 11, as the Nuncio to Italy and San Marino. Consequently, the Apostolic See has remained vacant until now.


Sunday, June 23, 2024

A LAYMAN SAYS THAT THE POPE HAS NO AUTHORITY TO SUPPRESS THE TRADITIONAL FORM OF THE PRE-VATICAN II LITURGICAL TRADITION OF THE CHURCH—I AM NOT SURE THAT I AGREE, BUT WHO AM I TO JUDGE?


This is the last part of a much too long article I read in Crisis Magazine online. It is written by Aaron Seng. You can read to full, too long article HERE

This is the last part of Aaron Seng’s much too long article:

Is the pope obliged to faithfully maintain the Church’s traditional liturgical rites?

Yes. The early medieval Papal Oath affirms: “I promise to keep inviolate the discipline and the liturgy of the Church as I have found them and as they were transmitted by my holy Predecessors,” and the Papal Oath decreed by the Council of Constance echoes: “I will follow and observe in every way the rite handed down of the ecclesiastical sacraments of the Catholic Church.15

Can a pope abrogate a liturgical rite of immemorial custom in the Church?

No. Just as a pope cannot forbid or abrogate the Apostles’ Creed or Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed or substitute a new formula for them, neither can he abrogate traditional, millennium-old rites of Mass and the sacraments or forbid their use. This applies as much to Eastern as to Western rites.16

Could the traditional Roman Rite ever be legitimately forbidden for the entire Church?

No. It rests upon divine, apostolic, and ancient pontifical usage, and bears the canonical force of immemorial custom; it can never be abrogated or forbidden.17

Must we comply with the prohibition of traditional Catholic liturgical rites?

No. “What earlier generations held as sacred, remains sacred and great for us too, and it cannot be all of a sudden entirely forbidden or even considered harmful. It behooves all of us to preserve the riches which have developed in the Church’s faith and prayer, and to give them their proper place.” The rites of venerable antiquity form a sacred and constitutive part of the common patrimony of the Church, and not even the highest ecclesiastical authority has power to proscribe them.18

Is any act of disobedience to a command of the pope by itself schismatic?

No. One is not schismatic if he resists a pope or refuses to obey a particular teaching or command of his that is manifestly contrary to natural or divine law, or that would harm or undermine the integrity of the Catholic Faith or the sacredness of the liturgy. In such cases, disobedience and resistance to the pope is permissible and sometimes obligatory.19

For decades, Catholic and non-Catholics20 alike have been confused by a strange and imposed sense of “forbidding” made to surround the traditional Roman Rite—the same rite once universally treasured as most holy, most praiseworthy, most worthy of devotion; the love of countless saints and mystics, “the most beautiful thing this side of Heaven.”21

Thankfully, if a Catholic should ever need to defend his sacred heritage from misguided attempts to suppress it in the future, he now has a reliable Catholic catechism to reference for support.

My astute commentary: I do think that the Supreme Pontiff of the Catholic Church has no authority to change defined doctrine and dogmas nor does an Ecumenical Council in union with the pope. As St. Pope John Paul II taught in a definitive way by saying the pope has no authority to ordain women as men only are validly ordained to Sacred Orders and is to be definitively held as a part of the Ordinary Magisterium of the Church, so too, no pope can change the Apostles Creed. No Pope can change the Nicene Creed. Future creeds build upon each creed but no creed is ever suppressed or forbidden to be prayed if the Church has approved it in Council

The same would be true of the form of the Liturgy of the Council of Trent. Even at Trent, it was declared that certain forms of the liturgy prior to that Council with a certain number of years behind it could not be suppressed. 

Thus I do tend to believe that the previous liturgy of the Church which in fact predates even the Council of Trent, which simply codified it and made it universal for the Latin Rite, cannot be suppressed. 

One might argue though, that the intent of the Liturgy of the Church, meaning its doctrine and dogmas were not changed in the new form after Vatican II, just the form and canonical order were changed and new prayers added.

I am not calling into question Vatican II’s reforms, but can a pope declare the liturgical tradition before the Second Vatican Council or any council no longer allowed? I would tend to believe that if one says yes, then any pope could suppress the Apostles Creed or the Nicene Creed and replace it with others more developed or less developed. 

A LOVELY EPISCOPAL ORDINATION FOR THE ORDINARIATE IN LONDON, CARDINAL FERNANDEZ CELEBRANT

 

Thursday, June 20, 2024

YOUNG PRIESTS AND LAITY WERE THE DRIVING FORCE BEHIND THE PROLIFERATION OF THE TLM DURING THE GLORIOUS PERIOD OF SUMMORUM PONTIFICUM!

POPE FRANCIS CELEBRATING MASS AD ORIENTEM IN THE SISTINE CHAPEL:


WHY ARE NOT THEY THE DRIVING FORCE BEHIND THE RE-ENCHANTMENT OF THE MODERN OR NOVUS ORDO OF THE MASS?????

 I don’t know if the final solution for the TLM will take place under this papacy or not. But let’s say they succeed in suppressing the TLM altogether.

What then?

Young priests and laity must start reenchanting the modern Mass.

Chant the propers in Latin as well as the parts of the Mass.

Chant the Mass ad orientem or if the bishop says no to that, do so with the Benedictine altar arrangement and the choreography  of the TLM especially for servers. 

Allow for kneeling for Holy Communion.

Prior to Summorum Pontificum, this was the goal, to reenchant the Modern Mass.

We need to do so today more than ever!

TO BE HONEST WITH YOU, I WONDERED WHY THE VATICAN WAITED SO LONG!

 


I am not psychiatirst, but I have felt that the Archbishop is suffering from some kind of pathology of a religious, moral, spiritual and mental kind or it is dementia and he’s being used by schismatic forces or the devil. But who am I to judge. I don’t fault the Vatican or the pope in this trial:

FROM VATICAN NEWS!

Vigano announces on X he is being tried for schism

Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, the former Apostollic Nuncio to the United States, publishes a copy of a decree summoning him to appear before the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith to answer charges of schism. 

Vatican News

Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, former apostolic nuncio to the United States, has posted on his “X” account a communication from the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith summoning him to Rome to face an “extrajudicial penal process” (also known as an “administrative process”) for the canonical crime of schism.

According to the social account, which reproduces a copy of a decree attributed to the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith, Viganò was to appear Thursday afternoon (or appoint his own defense counsel) at 3:30 p.m. to “take notice of the accusations and evidence concerning the crime of schism of which he has been accused (public statements which result in a denial of the elements necessary to maintain communion with the Catholic Church; denial of the legitimacy of Pope Francis; a rupture of communion with him; and rejection of the Second Vatican Council).” The document warns that should he fail to appear, or to provide a written defense submitted by June 28, the archbishop “will be judged in his absence.”

In September 2018, Arcbhishop Viganò in September 2018 penned a clamorous letter concerning the case of then-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, in which he called for Pope Francis’ resignation. The McCarrick affair, which was fully clarified by the Holy See with the publication of a detailed report in November 2020 that comprehensively refutes the Archbishop, is not the subject of the document published in the X account. Rather, according to Archbishop Viganò himself, the former apostolic nuncio is accused of refusing to recognize the legitimacy of the current Pontiff and that of the last Council. The Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith has not commented in any way on the announcement posted on social media.

In posting the decree, the social profile connected with Archbishop Viganò attributes the following to the former nuncio: “I consider the accusations against me an honor,” and calls the Second Vatican Council an "ideological, theological, moral, and liturgical cancer,” of which “the Synodal Church” is a “metastasis.”

Commenting on the affair, Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin said, “Archbishop Viganò has taken some attitudes and some actions for which he must answer.” The Cardinal was speaking on the sidelines of a conference at the Pontifical Urbanian University, explaining that the former nuncio will be given the opportunity to defend himself.

Reflecting on his previous experience of working with Archbishop Vigano, Cardinal Parolin told journalists, “I am very sorry because I always appreciated him as a great worker, very faithful to the Holy See, someone who was, in a certain sense, also an example. When he was apostolic nuncio he did good work. 

“I don’t know what happened,” the Secretary of State concluded.

HOW DO YOU SPELL HUBRIS? READ THIS!


Andrea Grillo gave an interview to Messa in Latino  HERE and what a mess and mean-spirited man he is. He is a symbol of the terrorist liturgist who knows everything as we know academic liturgists know and that they are not to be challenged or questioned. 

What a lay clerical fool he is!

This segment of the interview captures it! I wonder what the Eastern Rites and the parallel Orthodox Churches will have to say about this man’s Latin Rite arrogance, not to mention the various Latin Rites, like the Ordinariate and Ambrosian ones!

Professor Grillo: The first question contains numerous inaccuracies that undermine the very meaning of the question. I will try to illustrate them one by one. Those you call “traditionalists faithful to Rome” are actually people who, for various reasons, are at odds with Rome, and not in a relationship of fidelity. The point of contention does not simply concern a “ritual form” but a way of understanding relations inside and outside the Church. It all begins with the misunderstanding generated (in good faith, but through a completely wrong judgement) by the Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum, which had introduced a “ritual parallelism” (between the Novus Ordo and Vetus Ordo) that has neither a systematic nor practical foundation: it is not theologically sound and generates greater divisions than those that were present previously. The idea of “fidelity to Rome” must be challenged: to be faithful to Rome, one must acquire a “ritual language” according to what Rome has communally established. One is not faithful if one has one foot in two shoes. Having demonstrated this contradiction, the merit of Traditionis Custodes is that it re-establishes the one “lex orandi” in force for the entire Catholic Church. If someone tells me he is faithful at the same time to the Novus Ordo and Vetus Ordo, I reply that he has not understood the meaning of tradition, within which there a legitimate and insuperable progress that is irreversible.

Tuesday, June 18, 2024

THE GREATEST THREAT TO SCHISM TODAY IS NOT THE MORE RADICAL ASPECTS OF TLM COMMUNITIES BUT FROM LIBERAL CATHOLICS IN GERMANY AND ELSEWHERE!

 



Some have commented here that the TLM and Pope Benedict’s Summorum Pontificum are what has fomented the greatest threat to schism in the Catholic Church. It is to laugh, of course, and completely false and a diversion from where a true schism is coming, from liberal, progressive Catholics. 

The threat of schism comes not from the SSPX or TLM Catholics, it comes from Germany, which by the way, led to the schism within Catholicism in the 1500’s. That was called the Protestant Reformation. Today elitist Germans are leading a new or neo reformation and it will have the same worldwide effects as the German Protestant Reformation had in the 1500’s. 

Fortunately, there are voices inside and outside of Germany demanding that liberal German Catholics return to the true Church. 

You can read the National Catholic Reporter (yes you read that correctly) article on the German Schism HERE. 

IS THE CURRENT VATICAN REGIME COMPLETELY TONE DEAF TO THE LITURGICAL CHAOS THEY HAVE CREATED?


From the heavy handed and completely unnecessary suppression of the TLM to demanding that the Syro-Malabar Rite celebrate their Liturgy of the Eucharist ad orientem, liturgical chaos and resentment has festered to new heights never seen even in the 1970’s!

Now the Archdiocese of Kerela refuses to implement ad orientem for their Eastern Rite Liturgy of the Eucharist risking going into schism with the Vatican. You can read the Curx story HERE.

It harkens back to the First Sunday of Advent, 1969 when Pope Paul VI suppressed the Ancient Liturgy of the Church (with minor exceptions) and demanded the entire Latin Rite embrace his newly created Modern Vernacular Mass and did so in a pre-Vatican II authoritarian way. 

While most Catholics who were hurt and made angry by the authoritarian way the new Mass was imposed,  the Vatican went ahead despite the damage to these Catholics’ Faith they caused, so much so a many Catholics disengaged from the Church altogether and thus did their children and grandchildren. 

Most of those liturgical dissenters are dead now, but their non-practicing progeny are still out there. After all, today in the USA, if a diocese gets 20% of their Catholics to Mass, that is considered a success. Prior to the Council nearly 90% of Catholics attended the Mass that the Vatican today denigrates.

Under Pope Benedict and his most Catholic and liberal policies, His Holiness knew the wisdom of allowing the two forms of the Mass to co-exist and to allow the Modern Mass to be celebrated in Latin or at least partially and he encouraged ad orientem for it as well as kneeling for Holy Communion. He did not impose any of this on bishops other than to insist that it be allowed where those who wanted it sought to have it. 

The Vatican would do well to learn again how Pope Benedict created liturgical peace as it concerns the chaos the Vatican has caused in India. Propose but do not demand that the Liturgy of the Eucharist be celebrated ad orientem. But allow the Liturgy of the Eucharist to be celebrated toward the people where this is important for clergy and laity. The Vatican should correct its virulent clericalism for the Vatican is the cause of all this disunity.  

In so many areas, the Vatican regime seems more concerned about their rights and that they be obeyed in this, that or the other even in areas where litigimate diversity can coexist. From Cardinal Roche to Cardinal Fernandez, we see clericalism at work and enabled by the present pope. Clericalism is always associated with authoritarianism which has found new life in the Vatican these past 13 years. 

We should all pray that the Vatican regime of today appreciate that people need to have faith in God and live the Faith and Morals of the Church. The TLM, facing ad orientem or the nave help different Catholics in different ways to be people of faith. Why is the Vatican being so rigid and authoritarian in things that can allow for legitimate diversity? Is it a mental illness linked to a rigid authoritarian personality which in church-speak is called clericalism?

Sunday, June 16, 2024

A LOVELY SENTIMENT AND APPRECIATED BLESSING SENT FROM THE DIOCESE OF MY RESIDENCE, CHARLESTON…

 


THOSE READING MY MOST HUMBLE BLOG THIS PAST WEEK!

 United States                                                                                                                    6.26K

Hong Kong
4.93K
Canada
433
Singapore
387
Israel
221
United Kingdom
160
Germany
107
Netherlands
80
China
62
Australia
57
Ireland
52
Poland
43
India
42
Nepal
19
Philippines
14
Japan
8
Russia
8
Brazil
6
Iran
4
Other
1.01K

Saturday, June 15, 2024

ROBERT CARDINAL SARAH NAILS IT AND DOING SO WHILE BECOMING A CONCLAVE INFLUENCER…


The ongoing suppression of the TLM is clearly linked to the on-going promotion of the “new morality” that was at its pinnacle of promotion way back in the early 1970’s. The new morality, supposedly promoted by Vatican II, enabled sin of all kinds and is in a partnership with the “world, the flesh and the devil.”
The new morality, under the guise of “conscience” and proper consultation makes room for scammers, fornicators, adulterers, the abortion industry and those who take advantage of the poor to flourish and feel no remorse. 
It denigrates the “rigidity” of the old morality that most Catholics learned and tried to live prior to the novel new morality of the 1970’s finding new encouragement in the current life of the Church, a kind of backwardism to say the least.

Here’s the money quote from Cardinal Sarah. Yes His Eminence nails it:

WASHINGTON, D.C. (LifeSiteNews) – Cardinal Robert Sarah, prefect emeritus of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments in Rome, linked the attempted suppression and rejection of the Traditional Latin Mass within the Church to the rejection of traditional Catholic morals and Europe’s wider defection from Christianity in what he called “practical atheism.” 
The comments on the attempt to cast off the Church’s ancient liturgy within the Latin rite came in a talk Cardinal Sarah offered at the Catholic University of America (CUA) on Thursday, June 14, at an event titled “An Evening with Robert Cardinal Sarah,” sponsored by the Napa Institute and the Catholic Information Center in Washington, D.C.  

Here is a video of the good Cardinal’s presentation, may he influence the cardinals in the upcoming Conclave:

Friday, June 14, 2024

IS IT TIME TO HAVE DIFFERENT CLASSES OF MASSES AGAIN? YES, SING IT OVER, YES!


It’s time for a new, New Liturgical Movement. The goal is to force a style of Mass that does what Vatican II asked, to preserve Latin and Gregorian Chant. 

In the tradition of the TLM, there are three forms of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. The Low Mass is completely spoken, but four hymns can be inserted into the spoken Mass. In pre-Vatican II times, that included hymns well known to Catholics especially the Marian Hymns. But everything in the Mass was spoken including the propers. 

Then there is the Sung Mass, aka, High Mass. No deacon or sub-deacon is present, but the Mass is sung, meaning all the propers and parts of the Mass. Incense may or may not be used. 

Then there is the Solemn Sung Mass with deacon and subdeacon and all the bells and whistles. It’s very complicated and in pre-Vatican II times only certain parishes had the capability of celebrating it.

Today, you would be hard pressed to find a Novus Ordo Mass celebrated with Latin and Gregorian Chant for the propers and parts of the Mass. 

Perhaps, we need just one new category, the Gregorian High Mass. In this Mass the propers are chanted in Latin with the prescribed propers. The unchanging parts of the Mass are chanted in Latin. The changing parts allow for the vernacular. 

Let’s also say that the Gregorian High Mass should be the principal Mass for a parish thus every parish must have it.

How about that!

Thursday, June 13, 2024

WOW! JUST WOW! A YOUNG JESUIT LIKE CARDINAL PELL CALLS THIS PAPACY A DISASTER

 


America Magazine allows for some free readings of its articles. This one by a young Jesuit hits the nail on the head! Although this Jesuit won’t say it, what needs to be said is that we need this papacy to end and a new pope to be elected. We need a new beginning in the papacy, one that is Catholic and majestic. 

Joe Hoover, S.J.June 13, 2024

LET’S GET THIS RIGHT, LIBERALISM HAS AND STILL IS DRIVNG PEOPLE AWAY FROM THE CHURCH!


In an article at Crisis entitled “Do Conservatives Drive People Away from the Church”, the author makes several great points that it is untrue, that liberals, be they Catholic or Protestant, are the ones driving people away from the Church and have done so since liberal Protestantism’s embrace of modernism in the late 1800’s that inspired Protestant fundamentalism in the late teens and 1920’s. 

But what the author includes in his article is this on the liturgy. Enjoy:

 I am not, here, going to get into an argument about the traditional Latin Rite and the Novus Ordo. I will say two things, which may end up pleasing nobody, but I say them because I want to bring good and beautiful things to as many people as are ready to receive them. One is that the Novus Ordo, as I have seen it celebrated in most places, is underwhelming. It features clunky or stupid or heretical lyrics sung to hippity-hop show-tune melodies, or, incongruously, to a genuine hymn melody dragged into service, as if you might fit a portrait of St. Ronald McDonald into Fra Angelico’s Last Judgment. The ambience is chatty rather than joyful, slightly bored rather than solemn. Much of the action is performed, as it were, ad lib, as if it did not much matter how it is done, or even if it is done at all.

I have also witnessed the Novus Ordo celebrated both reverently and intelligently and filled with beautiful music, solemn ceremony, and devout prayer. I will freely grant that a pastor must go out of his way to do so: for one thing, it means getting rid of both the bad music and the show-off way in which it is presented to the audience, I mean, the congregation. But here I warn the traditionalists that people starved for beauty may need more help than a series of Latin chants can give them.  Chant melodies are horizontally difficult, and you lose the effect of singing a fine poem in your own language to a melody you can remember exactly.  

We must try to approach people where they are; and we should keep in mind that at least one of the aims of sacred music is akin to that of sacred poetry, that it should enter the memory and make it fruitful; it may thus be more than what you have heard, or even what in a special setting you have sung, but what you can hear in your mind’s ear ever after, and sing out when the Spirit moves you.  

It is good that the traditional rite is not approachable as a deli counter is. But it is also good if what is sung is approachable, indeed memorable in the strict sense, as the Psalms were for any faithful Hebrew who wished, in the quiet of his mind, to pray by singing. 

In general, though, the more sharply distinct the liturgy is from the mundane, the better. If you want lousy music, you don’t have to haul yourself to church to get it. It is readily available on the radio or the net. If you want superficial bonhomie, you can go to a park and get some sunshine and fresh air along with it. Eastern Rite churches are drawing people in droves, if for no other reason than that the rites are not like anything else in our usual experience, which, again, is singularly drab, even when drab comes in garish color.

Wednesday, June 12, 2024

WE’LL NEED TO ASK FATHER JAMES MARTIN, SJ, WHICH DESCRIPTIVE HE PREFERS FOR CHURCH DOCUMENTS

Frociaggine 

or 

disordinato 


A MOVIE THAT GETS IT, THE NEEDED PASTORAL CONVERSION AS PERCEIVED BY HOLLYWOOD IN 1940

 


Yesterday I watched on TCM the movie, All This and Heaven Too. You can read a summary of the plot HERE.

A kind of subplot and very subtle was the difference between the Catholic clergy and religious in France during the time of a monarchy and a Protestant minister, with no identified denomination. Catholics are portrayed as being preoccupied by sexual sins, even if only of the heart, and not other things just as if not more serious. The Protestant minister is portrayed as human, loving, caring and very compassionate and normal. He’s a likable guy because he is human. 

The duchess in the movie, is a very horrible person, wife and mother. Yet, due to her royal status and wealth, she has a personal chaplain, a priest, who is portrayed as aloof, supportive of the duchess although he sees what a poor mother and wife she is, and very judgmental of the “nanny” played by Bette Davis who has won the heart of the poor husband of the duchess. 

Nuns run the prison in France where the nanny eventually ends up. They are not portrayed as very human, but in a very subtle way.

While these presentations may well be caricatures, most of us who knew religious and clergy prior to Vatican II can say that the lack of pastoral outreach and warmth was often the case with some but not all clergy and religious. 

On the other hand, we knew that Protestant clergy were very pastoral, with the people and identified with them like the Protestant minister in the movie, who has a small part but is truly concerned about the nanny and what is happening to her.

The title of the movie, “All This and Heaven Too” comes from a line that the Protestant minister makes in the movie when he says life does not have to be a penance only as a prelude to heaven but that heaven could be lived on earth too. 

In the movie, it is not clear if the Bette Davis character is Catholic or not, but she lives her life as a penance and in no way is guilty of adultery or enticing the husband, other than she is kind to his children. But the Catholics around her, from the duchess, to the priest to the Catholic system of justice at that period demonize her as stealing the affection of the Boyer character away from his horrible wife.  

The movie based on a book seems to be showing, as a back story, the heresy of Jansenism in Catholicism in France of that period. It is a rigid puritanical approach to sex and enjoying what life has to offer as a taste of heaven on earth. 

The duchess who is murdered by her husband who in a fit of insane rage in reaction to her provocations, played by Charles Boyer, is held up by her priest chaplain as a person of virtue who had to endure the affair of the heart her husband was having with the nanny. His affair of the heart is considered the worst of sins not the duchess who drives her husband to kill her because her cold, calculating manner of life and who is a cold wife and terrible mother.