Tuesday, December 2, 2014


 For the most part, I agree with Archbishop Cupich's sentiments and vision:

We can't fight ideologies at the "Communion rail" (I love that term) and I agree with Archbishop Cupich.

I have found the public discourse by some in the Church, to include some bishops, as a bit untoward when there is naming of names and suggesting they not go to Holy Communion.

I believe that each local bishop has the responsibility to deal privately with public persons and not in the press or the Church at large. Specific people should not be singled out even if they are public persons and sinners, unless they are formally excommunicated by their local bishop who prior to excommunicating the person tried privately and persistently to deal with that person but to no use.

I often teach and preach that a person should be in a state of grace to receive Holy Communion. I state that if one is knows they are in a state of mortal sin they should not receive Holy Communion until they have received sacramental penance.

However, I never say at Mass, Johnny, I know what you did on your date last night, and so does everyone else here,  so don't come to Holy Communion today. Mary, you counseled a person to have an abortion and brought her to planned parenthood and others here saw you doing it, don't come to Holy Communion today!

Doing this is very untoward, unnecessarily public and grandstanding and pushes people away from God's grace rather than toward God's grace and the transformation and conversion that God alone can induce.

Finally, listen to Nora O'Donnell's questions of Archbishop Cupich about same sex marriage and trying to get him to say something against the Church's teaching and how well he dealt with it. We can all learn a lesson from His Excellency concerning how to deal with this topic!

I knew then Monsignor Blase Cupich in the 1980's when he was rector of the Pontifical College Josephinum in Columbus, Ohio. I found him to be solid, orthodox and theologically adept. He had a vision for the Church and the priesthood. He knew the direction he wanted to take in the formation of seminarians and future priests. Plus he offered me a job on the college level there which flattered me but I did not want to take.

Keep an eye on Archbishop Cupich and learn from him. His liturgical ways need some developing as these are a bit too 1980's still and don't take into account the liturgical developments that occurred under Pope Benedict, but no one is perfect!


Anonymous said...

"His liturgical ways need some developing as these are a bit too 1980's still and don't take into account the liturgical developments that occurred under Pope Benedict, but no one is perfect!"

Much of the deterioration of faith in recent decades is surely due to the appointment of bishops whose "liturgical ways need some developing". Why should any bishop be appointed whose liturgical ways are visibly lacking?

Does the Church actually believe that the liturgy is (as Sacrosanctum Concilium says) the “source and summit--the summit toward which the activity of the Church is directed, and the source from which all her power flows.”? If so, should not be a bishop’s liturgical perfection be the first criterion for his appointment? Otherwise, talk of evangelization (new or old) is just meaningless prattle.

Anonymous said...

Have y'all ever considered installing a Crucifix over the altar and removing the chandelier?

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

I presume you are talking about the photo at the top of my blog, which is not my church, but the cathedral in Lincoln, NB. The chandelier you see is actually a modern version of an altar canopy or corona although it looks like an Apollo Space craft.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Henry, he's a trained liturgist! Should I say anything more?

Anonymous said...

No offense but it looks like a mainline protestant church is hosting a true Catholic mass.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Actually the reason why I have it at the head of my blog is that the Bishop of Lincoln is celebrating the Ordinary Form of the Mass in this fashion which makes even an ugly Cathedral like this look elegant.

Православный физик said...

I disagree, If it becomes public knowledge, that's a different situation.

It is not the job of the priest to expose public scandal, it is the job of the priest to protect from sacrilege...:D

It's going to be a long time of suffering for Chicago.

Anonymous said...

Wow! I'm impressed. I predict that under such leadership, vocations in the Archdiocese of Chicago will grow exponentially and there will be a great return of fallen-away Catholics to the confessional and Mass! It's obvious as well that the Extraordinary Form's devotees need not fear any containment policies as this is a bishop who is ready to fight the good fight!

Oops…I forgot about reality. Let's sing two more verses of Kumbaya: "Someone's groaning Lord" and "Someone's dying Lord."

Gene said...

Cupich is go-along-to-get-along. He is a social gospel type who will do nothing to move the Church away from secularism. He will pay lip-service to doctrine (like Francis) then do whatever he can to soften the Church's stance on gays, gay marriage, women Priests, etc.
If a Priest knows that a public figure espouses abortion, gay marriage, etc. it is an outrage for the Priest to allow those people to receive. The sight of Pelosi, Biden, and Kerry receiving is sickening and disgusting to devout Catholics AND PROTESTANTS everywhere. I have a number of friends who are protestant ministers and several who are theology profs in major seminaries and grad schools. I get this all the time, 'What in the Hell is wrong with your Catholic Church there, Gene?" And, this in email the other day from my prof friend at a major Calvinist seminary, "Looks like your Pope is all pastoral hat and no theological horse. So, when will you get enough and come back?"
The Church is being made a laughing stock by Priests and Bishops whose statements on theology/doctrine are all tongue in cheek. Catholics should be as embarrassed by these Priests and Bishops as knowing protestants are.

Anonymous said...

I am so relieved to hear you say something positive and supportive of Archbishop Cupich. I am in the archdiocese of Chicago, and since the 1970's I reserve my opinion of a new bishop until I can discern his orthodoxy. I have heard various things about Cupich, and heard ABOUT (but did not hear for myself) his comment on Face the Nation. Of course, the person reporting it made it sound like Cupich said he would not correct such a person or deny them Communion. But even in spite of that take on it, I could understand Cupich's point that a public denunciation of someone for their sinful public stance doesn't in fact minister to "the smoldering wick." On the other hand, one would hope a bishop (or a priest), would indeed contact these persons privately to counsel them regarding the precarious position of their soul, and making them aware of the scandal they may be causing. Somehow I doubt bishops or priests do this. I wish they would.

It would be wise of moral leaders like bishops and priests to take note that this tendency of (almost) erring on the side of charity is what led to the accusations of cover up in the pedophilia scandals. Some of the rest of the flock and certainly the world at large loses confidence in the bishop or priest when it appears they are soft on sin.

Paul said...

Ideologies at the "Communion Rail"?

When did abortion, homosexual activities, fornication and artificial birth control become "ideologies"?

When each stopped being mortal sins?

Those who profess to be Catholic yet publicly reject Christ's teachings and/or encourage others to do so, invite scandal upon themselves. They have excommunicated themselves publicly. That they approach and *expect* the Body Of Christ, regardless, is, in part, due to the enablers who permit yet another scandal.

Yet through all this permissiveness we wonder why scandal rocks the stewards of Christ's Church. Perhaps the "Smoke of Satan" has become a darkening, billowing cloud.

Anonymous said...'re a darned good stone caster.

Gene said...

Anonymous, stop trying to divert attention from the real issue by playing the lib game. All are sinners…devout Catholics know when they are not supposed to receive. There are too many Priests who make a mockery of the Eucharist by allowing the unworthy to receive even when everyone knows these public figures and they ideology. Just because you don't give a damn doesn't mean a thing…except that you are just like them.

Православный физик said...

Sometimes it's necessary to call a spade a spade, I had a priest tell me once, I'm not going to hell for any of you. I tend to think that Bishops' should have this attitude for their flock.

Anonymous said...

Regarding what Cupich says about the immigration issue: Something bothers me about what he says. He says the desire for a “better life” is placed in us by God. Good enough. But for him to suggest illegally coming into this country is an just answer to this desire, is, to me, tantamount to excusing a guy who robs a convenience store because he’d like to have a better life for his family, and that desire for a better life is placed in him by God. If this is how the bishops see it, they are sidestepping the fact these people who came here without visas broke our laws, and as such, are not properly responding to the desire for a better life placed in them by God. To reward that is wrong.

Anonymous said...

There is no need to single anyone out. All a bishop needs to do is publicly state what is the Church's rule on worthy reception of the Blessed Sacrament. Either every year or every election cycle and whenever asked to comment on the subject should be mandatory procedure.

No politician needs to be mentioned by name but unambiguously stating what causes a person to be in a state of mortal sin is radical only to those who hate the truth and/or want to water down the Faith. Bee identified the discouraging aspects of the Cupich rule. He says people need to be contracted, but how many social liberal Democrats has he had any conversation with? Is there any evidence that he has instructed priests in his former diocese that certain persons are not allowed to receive? I really dislike when clergy use amateur political tricks to try and fool the sheep. Bernardine redux is in full swing.


Paul said...

To Anon @ 8:41pm

While both may hurt, casting a stone is meant to injure, counsel is meant to heal.

Gene said...

This Pope, on leaving Turkey, equated Christian fundamentalists with Muslim Fundamentalists. This is completely outrageous and another example of the recklessness of this Pope. Christian fundamentalists have killed no one and do not blow up cities. This Pope has become the biggest defender of Muslims (who hate the Church and wish to eliminate the Judaeo-Christian tradition), while belittling devout Catholics and true believers. I am fast becoming a neo-sedevacantist…I'm one until this guy is gone. He knows damn well what he is saying and doing.

Anonymous said...

I prayed and consulted a friend before posting the comment below:

Father says: "I believe that each local bishop has the responsibility to deal privately with public persons and not in the press or the Church at large."

Yet, reverend Father, how has that been working out since 1973 (in the case of abortion)? Most every "high ranking" Catholic democrat is *for* the genocide known as abortion. I ask this with all charity and humility towards the office of your ministerial priesthood.

Did not Jesus call out publicly those who were in high ranking positions and *not* doing their job leading souls to God? (okay, granted, those were within Judaism - but, St. John the Baptist called out Herod about his... ahem!, *irregular* marriage)

Even St. Paul said to expose the evil that is in the Church (Eph. 5:11) so that others would not sin (1 Tim. 5:20). Did he not say to drive out the wicked person in the Church? (1 Cor. 5:13, that is to say one who persists in public sin and scandal via excommunication)

I don't know, Father. Seems to me like the same old song and dance policy that the USCCB has adopted for four decades now. And how many of these high ranking politicos have truly converted from their support of the intrinsic evil of abortion, in those last four decades, after having had private dialogue with their bishops?

Catechist Kev

Gene said...

And, this regarding the Pope from another forum today: "Jimmy Carter…now available in Catholic."

Anonymous said...

Neo-sedevacantism? Mercy me, what comes next? Neognostic, semipelagian supralapsarianism?

The possibilities are perfectly Elysian!

Anonymous said...

"Henry, he's a trained liturgist! Should I say anything more?"

Please don't. It doesn't get much worse than this--I know of no more ideologically pejorative term for a cleric than "trained liturgist". We all know what THAT means!

Gene said...

Anonymous at 8:26: LOL! Let's see, I am an Augustinian, Jansenist, former-Calvinist, supralapsarian, TULIP Catholic! Elysian, indeed!

Anonymous said...

Cupich just stated at his installation Mass he was upset there was not enough altar girls and female lay lectors running around the "praise area" as the Novus Ordonarians call the sanctuary. He is an ardent foe of the TLM, when he was bishop of Rapid City South Dakata he locked the church of the local TLM community for Holy Week and they held Holy Mass outside in front of the church. Yet he loves Father Pleger the flaming Communist priest, Chicago is in for it!!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous, although I have not attended a Sunday Mass in the ordinary form since before Summorum Pontificum, I may well qualify in your view as a "Novus Ordonarium" because I admittedly love the Roman Missal in both its 2002 Latin and its 2010 English versions. But though I've certainly heard the altar of sacrifice called the table of whatever, I've never heard the sanctuary called the "praise area". Really, where does such stuff come from? (Sure you're not thinking of some sort of evangelicals?)

Anonymous said...

Anonymous at 11:00 am said: "He (Cupich) is an ardent foe of the TLM, when he was bishop of Rapid City South Dakata he locked the church of the local TLM community for Holy Week."

Well, I am a parishioner at St. John Cansius in Chicago, the epicenter of the restoration of the sacred and celebration of both the TLM and the NO Masses, and I am hoping Cupich's views have softened on the TLM since his South Dakota days. I love both forms of the Mass, and almost prefer the NO when said according to the rubrics and with devotion. But if our Archbishop were to lock the doors I would go wherever our holy priests are saying Mass, and thank God for finding me worthy to suffer something for His sake. I know that sounds a bit over dramatic, but I live here, and it is very real.

Anonymous said...

Re: Cupich Locked the Church.

This took place in 2002 when the regulations of the motu proprio Ecclesia Dei were in force. Under ED the celebration of the liturgies of the Triduum according to the older forms was not allowed.

Summorum Pontificum came into force in 2007, changing some of the restrictions under ED. Among those changes was the permission given for the Triduum liturgies according to the older forms.

Gene said...

Cupich is not good news. The swirl around the drain continues...