Tag Archives: Jesus Christ

Only the one who holds the Petrine Munus can confirm the Bishops in the Faith

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

One of the primary and constant themes of the preaching of Our Lord Jesus Christ was that we should judge things according to the truth. And the truth regards not only what can be seen, but what cannot be seen, but inferred from looking at the facts with faith.

And He put us to the extreme test by what He did and suffered. Because if you only allowed yourself to be amazed at His miracles and to admire His teaching, His Passion was so much the utter contradiction of worldly logic, that mere human admiration would be shattered.

The other extreme test He put us to was to have faith that He was the Bread of Life come down from Heaven, and thus that He is truly, really and substantially there in the Blessed Sacrament. The eyes see bread and wine, but with faith, they see the Body and Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ.

Many ask me what is going on in the Church right now, and I have written an essay about this before. But now I want to approach the same problem from a different point of view.

The Vicar of the Christ Who ascended into Heaven

When Christ was about to ascend into Heaven, He said some truly marvelous words:  All power in Heaven and Earth has been given to Me (Matthew 28:18 according to the Vulgate). This passage is often translated with the word, “authority”, not “power”, which if understood badly, as it often is, is understood to refer only to legal authority. But the Greek says, πᾶσα ἐξουσία, means the power to act. It is not just the right to act.

These words are tremendous because of their implication. Christ Our Lord, is not only God, but wields the Divine Power in all its fullness even as Man.

The import for us is that this God become Man is the author of the office of Saint Peter. Peter is not just the Vicar of Christ on earth. Peter is the Vicar of the Christ Who ascended into Heaven and wields all power to act, in Heaven and Earth.

This can be seen in the history of the Church. We Roman Catholics often boast about the Roman Church being superior to the other Apostolic Churches or more fecund in spreading the faith or having saints. We speak often as if this is because of the superiority of Western Civilization or of the Roman Culture, legal system, or philosophical or theological sciences in the West.

The Vicar of the Christ with all power to act

But the mystical truth is quiet other. It is not us, nor the work of our hands, it is the Office of Peter. For the Successors of Saint Peter hold the office of the Vicar of Christ. and not only of any Christ, but of Christ with all the power to act.

The man who in truth has this office, by his mere existence and our communion, with him, merits for us grace to act. He does not merit this by being a good pope or a bad pope, though if he be a good pope he manifests this more.  No he merits it in a higher sense, because the Office of St. Peter has this instrumentality in the order of grace by its very nature as the Vicarship or Vice-Roy of Christ Jesus, Who has all power to act.

In this way, the last words of Our Lord on Earth, were a profound catechesis on the the nature of the Church and the order of grace. Our Lord was promising, by these words, that those who remained in communion with His Vicar, Saint Peter and his successors, would have the grace to accomplish His Final and Greatest Commandment: Go make disciples of every nation, baptizing them in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all the things which I commanded you!

The Petrine munus cannot be hidden

It follows then, that you cannot hide the effects of the Papal Office. You cannot bury them in your sins or wipe out its force by your personal defects. It exists and is empowered on a divine level, the human cannot overwhelm it.  This is because as Vicar of the One who has all power to act, there is no greater instrument in all the cosmos to mediate that active power, than the Office of Peter.

And thus, all of us who are in communion with the true Successor of Saint Peter will have the graces to accomplish the will of God, not because we merit it for our personal good works, but because we obtain it by being in and remaining in communion with the Vicar of Our Lord and Savior.

Likewise, if you are not the true successor of Saint Peter you cannot hide it. It will be evident in the immorality, blasphemies, idolatries, loss of faith, loss of every virtue and finally total abandonment of the divine ministry. You can see that in the cult of Palmar, Spain, who claim to have the true pope, but whose popes leave office and marry women.

desolation

Interpret the signs of the times!

Likewise, if the man you follow as Pope is ordering you not to be a Bishop, not to be a priest, not to believe, not to pray, not to frequent the sacraments, not to have devotion, not to practice virtue, not to be chaste, not the resist the world, the flesh or the devil, in short, not to be a Christian…

Then I say you need to discern the signs of the times.  Christ Jesus did not say, All power to not act in Heaven and Earth has been given to Me.

Thus, the conclusion is inescapable. You’re mistaken. The one you think has the petrine munus, does not have it, because if he did, he would have the power to act and communicate this power to all the Bishops and clergy in communion with him. But it has been 7 years that he and they have been in formal schism with the one who does have that power, and now, their spiritual batteries have run down, and are dead. And the lights of the Church, that is the Sacraments, have gone out.

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What is a religious vocation?

“Unless you do penance, you shall all perish likewise.”
(St. Luke 13:5)

“So likewise, every one of you who does not renounce all that he has, cannot be My disciple.”
(St. Luke 14:33)

“Because he who exalts himself shall be humbled, but he who humbles himself shall be exalted.” (St. Luke 14:11)

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

On one occasion Our Lord Jesus Christ appeared to Faustina Kowalska and showed her the night sky, filled with the moon and stars. And He pointed to the full moon and said to the Saint, “You see how bright the moon is tonight, compared to the stars? Know that the glory of one soul in Heaven who was a faithful religious is like that in comparison to the glory of one soul who was a faithful layman.”

The greatness, beauty, honor, and glory of the religious vocation is a thing unheard of, unknown, and unappreciated in the world. Not only today; but in the past and until the end of time. It is unheard of in the world because the world does not speak of the religious life, except to ridicule it. It is unknown of in the world, because the world knows only pride of life, pride of the eyes and vanity of spirit. It is unappreciated in the world, because the world’s love leads to death; while a religious vocation leads straight to eternal life.

When a vocation begins to think of a religious vocation, he invariably considers that it is a difficult and narrow path. It contradicts what our nature loves, wants and is comfortable with. It contradicts what our parents, relatives, friends and worldly idols encourage us toward. It contradicts the freedom of life, the self determination of a career and the control our society encourages us to have over our life, lived here and now for the there and now. In short a religious vocation is the exact opposite of the creed of the world, the flesh and the devil.

To understand and appreciate and begin to desire a religious vocation, let us consider the four aspects of the essence of a religious vocation: its greatness, beauty, honor and glory.

The Greatness of a Religious Vocation

The greatness of the religious vocation is founded upon its essence. A religious vocation is a calling from the Triune God to devote one’s entire being and life, soul and body, heart and mind, prayer and works, to the knowledge, love and service of Him in this life, and to a special life and blessedness with Him in the world to come.

“Why did God make you?” This is the first question in the traditional Catechism, taught to children. And the answer is: “To know, love and serve God in this life, and to be blessed with Him forever in the life to come.” At Lourdes, St. Bernadette Soubirous, who was a cordbearer of St. Francis of Assisi, asked a favor of Our Lady. Our Blessed Mother replied: “I never promised to make you happy in this world, but only in the world to come.”

The idolization of technology during the last century has led to a complete here-and-now mentality in modern society. How many of our contemporaries are concerned solely and wholly with making money, getting a promotion, buying a house, raising a family, finding and enjoying new entertainments or be tourists here and there. But God did not make us for this world. God did not fashion us to be entertained in this life. God did not intend us to be satisfied here. If we are content with this life, entertained in this life, satisfied with this life, oh how sad, miserable, ignorant and wretched we truly are.

You shall die. God fixed the day before the foundation of the world. It will be for the punishment of your sins, for the punishment of the sin of Adam, if you die the friend of God; for the punishment of your own sins, if you die His enemy.

To be a religious is to consecrate oneself to the most important work in life: being the friend of God. If we become and remain His friend, His faithful servant, when we die He will grant us eternal life. This is the meaning of life; this is the mystery of life. It is that simple.

The greatness of a religious vocation is founded upon the essence of a religious vocation. A religious vocation is a calling from God to dedicate oneself entirely and purely to Himself. Since God is infinite goodness and eternal life, such a relationship is a arrow drawn and shot up into the infinity and eternity of God. As such a religious vocation is a calling to the maximum greatness a man can ever hope for and achieve: the eternal divine sonship, by the adoption of grace.

The Beauty of a Religious Vocation

The beauty of a religious vocation consists in the beauty of God. The religious vocation is an invitation and path to become immersed in the life and beauty of God. This is accomplished by our cooperation with the life of grace. Grace as you know is the participation in the life of the Most Blessed Trinity. Now God is perfect, infinite and eternal Beauty. And beauty is the harmony of order in goodness. So a religious vocation is a calling to become absorbed in God, immersed via grace into the beauty of mind, the beauty of heart and the beauty of spirit.

The beauty of mind to which a religious is called, is the immersion of our intellect in revealed truth in this life by faith and the virtues of wisdom and understanding and knowledge. The beauty of heart to which a religious is called, is the immersion of our will in the pure love of God via the virtues of charity, hope, prudence, fortitude, temperance and justice. The beauty of spirit to which a religious is called, is the exaltation of our mind and heart and body in the contemplation of God for his own sake and the dedication of our life to the works of mercy towards all.

The beauty of a religious vocation is seen so clearly in the life of the Blessed Virgin Mary, whose beauty of mind is so remarkably seen in the Magnificat, whose beauty of heart is so remarkable seen in her silent witness at the foot of the cross, and whose beauty of spirit is the sight which so many saints and holy souls have longed for and sought ought with so much prayer and fasting and good works. Indeed Our Blessed Mother is so beautiful that she has single handedly inspired the greatest of artists to the work of beauty.

The beauty of a religious vocation is seen also very clearly in the life of the Saints. How the saints inspire us to virtue, console us with their words, enlighten us with their teachings, encourage us in sorrows and urge us on to the perfection of charity. The saints are our best friends. How great an honor, if God should grant us the desire to follow in their footsteps. Thought not all Saints where religious; nearly all saints were religious, or if they were not, they lived more like religious than even some religious.

The Honor of a Religious Vocation

The honor of a religious vocation is derived from the One whom a religious serves. There is nothing greater than the service of the Most High and Blessed God, Three and One, the Eternal Lord, the Everlasting Creator, He who is all good, wholly good, without whom nothing is good.

Without God there is not honor, with God there is all honor; to serve God a little is a already a great honor, to serve Him faithfully a greater honor; but to serve Him faithfully and perfectly, that is entirely and wholly and perseveringly: this is the greatest honor, a sublime destiny and the work meriting a stupendous and amazing reward.

The honor of a religious vocation is the honor of serving a Great King, a most noble Redeemer, and a most powerful Master.

A religious is called to serve a Great King. Consider how High God is and you will being to understand the honor of a religious vocation. God is in His being beyond all angels and creatures: He is so good that all creatures by nature must desire either Himself or His works. He is so beautify that death would be the immediate result of seeing Him, so much would our soul flee the service of the body so as to grasp Him. He is so true, that to know Him as He is, is the root of immortality.

A religious is called to serve a most noble Redeemer. God the Son became a lowly man, a poor man, a crucified a rejected Messiah, so that by His poverty all of us might be rich in grace. God gave, God gives, and God will give of Himself and His riches to poor wretches sinners like ourselves. He is most generous, most giving, and most forgiving. What greater captain, general or lord is there to follow?

A religious is called to serve a most powerful Master. His faithful servants healed the sick, raised the dead, cursed to death the enemies of the Church, exorcised demons, and worked all manners of miracles. These were gifts which God gave them to manifest the even greater and truly safe spiritual gift which He gave them: the life of grace. God by His grace is Lord of heaven and earth. To serve him as a religious is to be taken up into a supernatural life, conversing with angels and saints and Our Lady, by faith.

How great then the honor of a religious vocation It is an honor to serve in the armed forces of one’s nation, to protect the safety of us all from temporal dangers. How much greater an honor to serve in the army of the God, the army of the Church Militant, to protect the Church from spiritual dangers? He who serves God faithfully in this life, will merit unimaginable riches in the life to come.

The Glory of a Religious Vocation

The glory of a religious vocation is the immense reward that lies in wait for the faithful religious. This reward is so great that if it were clearly known all the faithful would rush upon monasteries and convents in such numbers that the police would have to be called in just to control the crowds.

The glory of a religious vocation is the tremendous riches of heaven which are for all who serve God faithfully and over and above this very special graces and gifts which shall only be given to religious. Such are not even given to those saints who were not religious.

Eye has not seen, ear has not heard, nor has it even entered into the mind of man what God has prepared for those who love him. To love God is to keep His commandments out of love for Him. But to love God perfectly is to love Him with one’s whole mind, heart, soul and strength, and this is perfectly fulfilled in the whole and entire and perfect and pure dedication of a religious soul. So then how great is the glory of the religious in the world to come? It is beyond imagining, so I would be a liar if I described it in words. I imagine it to be so truly, greatly, beautifully, wonderfully, stupendously good, that it would be stunning and truly beatifying. But I am certain that it is greater than all this. For God loves a generous giver. And the blessedness of Heaven consists essentially in God’s giving of Himself, as He is, to the soul by an ontologic contact of mind to mind, will to will, spirit to spirit. Such an embrace is truly to be wondered at. But how much more the embrace of One who has be all the more loved. Such is the blessedness of the religious in Heaven.

The Duties of a Religious Vocation

A religious has the duty to know, love and serve God. To know Him by prayer, meditation and the study of Catholic teaching and scripture in this light. To love Him by keeping the commandments and following His precepts and by works of charity for our neighbor. To serve Him by being faithful and persevering in what he has promised until death.

A religious vows poverty, obedience and chastity. Poverty, in that he forsakes personal property and shares everything with his community. Obedience, in that he forsakes his own will, and does what his superior’s legitimately ask him to do for the community or the Church. Chastity, in that he forsakes all carnal pleasure, of body or mind, and lives with the innocence of a child who is concerned with pure things, holy things, heavenly things, and not those of the earth.

Such duties encompass the entire day and year and life of a religious. A religious should consider vacations and remuneration shameful. What he does and is, is for God alone; and no recompense in the life is comparable. Indeed it is so unequal to the beauty, honor, greatness, and glory of a religious vocation that it is a lie and a deceit to compare it to a career or job. The Church will only be restored with religious who are what they are and do what they do for His sake.

The Need for Religious

There is a very great and urgent need for religious today. With the dissolution of religious life there is obviously a need for new religious and new communities. With the loss of so many priests and brothers and sisters in decades following the Second Vatican Council there is obviously a need for others to take their place. But there is also a need for good and faithful, holy and generous religious. If there has been failure in recent years and a dissolution and leaving of many of the faithful, it is only because the prayers and example and works of religious were lacking. Religious are like Moses on the mountain above the plains of battle; when they let down their arms the Church suffers loss.

“Who shall go for My sake?” says the Lord. It is the religious who says: “Here I am Lord, send me!”

Conclusion

The religious vocation is a call to be a disciple, a soldier, a knight, a servant, and a son. What calling is greater? What destiny more worthwhile?

May God grant you each such a desire; and if you do not desire this, beg Him for it, or at least beg Him to grant this desire to others.

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Trust in God!

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

The essence of Christianity is trust in God.

This should be obvious to anyone who knows the least thing about being a Christian. But when trials and tribulations come upon a man, his faith in Christ is put to the test, and he discovers how much of himself he is incapable.

Much more is this so during national or world crises.

The Corona pandemic, as numerous articles here at FromRome.Info have demonstrated, is nothing more than a political stunt by globalists seeking their own self interests without any reference to trust in Jesus Christ. That they are running about like chickens with their heads cut off should not surprise the Christian.

Without Jesus Christ, we are nothing. We lack all stability. We have no foundation.

This is because without Jesus Christ, there is no real trust in God. And without trust in God, the recognition that the tidal wave of tribulations into which you have come causes you to realize that of yourself you cannot survive it. And that very human and normal reaction causes tremendous fear.

This is why, to His disciples, when they saw Him walking on the water, Christ said: Take courage, do not be afraid! (Matthew 14:27).

He rebuked them, because while they were terrified by a storm on the Sea of Galilee they did not have the sense to see Him as their hope and anchor. So His words of encouragement were also a gentle rebuke.

The human race, during this induced panic, has come into a mighty storm and men without faith in Christ are leading mankind into stupid and insane responses.

As Christians, we should not be afraid, IF we are faithful to Jesus. Because if we are faithful, then He will protect us.

Keep the Commandments, repent of your sins, believe in Christ 100% and accept all his teachings. Pray and trust in Him. And do not run here or there looking for someone to save you, some miracle to indicate the path, or some vision to direct you. Jesus should be enough for you, even if the mountains fall into the sea or the heavens roll up and the world dissolve into fire. For the man who trust in Jesus and is faithful, these things are nothings. God is Omnipotent and will care for His own.

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CREDITS: The Featured Image is a detail of a photograph by Andrew Shiva of the mosaic on the Dome of the Church of the Holy Sepulcher at Jerusalem, reminding us that Jesus rose from the dead and ascended into Heaven, there to reign over all things for ever. It is used here in accord with a Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike 4.0 license, as described here.

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Why St. Robert Bellarmine would hold the Renunciation was invalid

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

The Saints are a sure guide in every difficulty. We have only to find the Saints who encountered the same difficulty and examine their example or doctrine to find sound counsel for how we should respond.

For this reason, I have written previously or had published here a series of articles on the Saints who would be patrons in discerning what to do in the present Crisis in the Church:

  1. Saint Vincent Ferrer: who was lied to by a Cardinal for 38 years, into supporting an Antipope.
  2. Bless Pope Urban II: who fought and defeated an Antipope by his courage and generosity.
  3. Saint Bernard of Clairvaux: who fought against an Antipope on the principles of law.
  4. Bl. Ann Catherine Emmerich: who described in vision the crisis of Two Popes.
  5. Saint Ivo of Kermartin: who make sacrifices so that the poor would not be exploited by the powerful
  6. Saint Alphonsus dei Liguori: who wrote a tract on Legal Interpretation which gives sound principles for the reading of Pope Benedict’s Declaratio of Feb. 11, 2013

To these six, I wish to add a seventh, Saint Robert Bellarmine.

First, we probably have heard the principle, A doubtful pope is no pope. Which Saint Robert advances to resolve the question of whether the man elected in a Conclave which does not follow all the rules is therefore  a valid pope or not. He holds that he is not valid and should resign.

“Hence the saying of Bellarmine: a doubtful pope is no pope. ‘Therefore,’ continues the Cardinal, ‘if a papal election is really doubtful for any reason, the elected should resign, so that a new election may be held. But if he refuses to resign, it becomes the duty of the bishops to adjust the matter, for although the bishops without the pope cannot define dogma nor make laws for the universal Church, they can and ought to decide, when occasion demands, who is the legitimate pope; and if the matter be doubtful, they should provide for the Church by having a legitimate and undoubted pastor elected. That is what the Council of Constance rightly did.’” 8

(The Church of Christ: An Apologetic and Dogmatic Treatise, By Rev. E. Sylvester Berry, Page 229, Note 8: Bellarmine, “De Concilio, ii, 19)

(Source: here)

Now, in logic, any affirmation can be transformed into other true statements by a conversion. Let’s apply those principles to the maxim:

A doubtful pope is not the pope.

This is said in the context of a papal election, so let us add that condition to each side of the predication:

A doubtfully elected pope is not an elected pope.

Now let us transform the affirmation by changing the condition, from an election to a resignation:

A doubtfully resigned pope is not a resigned pope.

Now let us simplify the statement, with the logical equivalent of “not a resigned”

A doubtfully resigned pope is still the pope.

NOTE WELL, in the same passage from St. Robert, you see the affirmation of the Apostolic Right of the College of Bishops to intervene when there is an impeded see. I wrote about this in my article, Divine and Apostolic Right takes precedence in a State of Emergency.

But, more a propos to the present consideration: the Saint admits that God concurs with Canon Law in all such questions, there where the Saintly Cardinal in this passage from De Romano Pontifice lib. ii cap. xxx, says:

«Nam iurisdictio datur quidem Pontifici a Deo, sed hominum opera concurrente, ut patet; quia ab hominibus habet iste homo, qui ante non erat Papa, ut incipiat esse Papa; igitur non aufertur a Deo nisi per hominem, at hæreticus occultus non potest ab homine iudicari; nec ipse sponte eam potestatem vult relinquere.»

Which I render thus, in English:

For jurisdiction is indeed given to the Pontiff by God, but as One concurring with the works of men, as is clear: because from men this man, who before was not the Pope, has it, that he begins to be the Pope: therefore, it is not taken away (from him) by God, except through men, but an occult heretic cannot be judged by man; nor does the same want to relinquish that power willingly.

The key words here are: as One concurring with the works of men. This ablative phrase is not an absolute, it modifies God, and follows the classical Latin tradition of speaking of God under a certain restriction or condition. Here it speaks of God inasmuch as He agrees with men.

Saint Robert then explains: that a man who is elected has his office as pope  on account of the election made by men. The context here is a valid or legitimate papal election. And the presupposition is that the law is observed.

Now God concurs with the works of men in three ways, as it clear: by approving them, by disapproving them and by tolerating them. By approving them, when they are in accord with His Divine will for men — I use here will, in the sense of a thing willed, not the faculty of the Divine Nature.  By disapproving them, when they are not in accord with His divine will and hence in consequence He sends a punishment or sign of His disapproval. And by tolerating them, that is, when whether they be more or less perfect, they either do not transgress His will for men or they are the matter out of which He will bring a greater good.

For any one work of man God might be said to be approving, disapproving and tolerating each in a different respect. Approving of what is good, disapproving of what is morally disordered, and tolerating inasmuch He allows them to happen.

And since the ways of God are not always things which lay open to the discernment of men, it is not with great certitude that we can know God’s mind on any particular matter, unless we have certain knowledge of the Divine Mind. A thing which is only possible by Divine Revelation.

But of all the works of men, therefore, that God concurs with, we can say of one, that what God’s will for men is, because we have certain knowledge of the Divine Mind through the testimony of the Son of God as recorded in the Gospel of Saint Matthew and handed down in the Church as worthy of utmost faith:

And Jesus answering, said to him: Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-Jona: because flesh and blood hath not revealed it to thee, but my Father who is in heaven.

18 And I say to thee: That thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build My Church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

19 And I will give to thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven. And whatsoever thou shalt bind upon earth, it shall be bound also in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose upon earth, it shall be loosed also in heaven.

Matthew 16:17-19

And it follows, since, because John Paul II was the valid and legitimate successor of Saint Peter, that Peter lived in him, when he promulgated the Code of Canon Law of 1983. And thus, these words of Our Blessed Lord and Lawgiver Supreme: whatsoever though shalt bind upon earth, are engaged in upholding that Code of Canon Law.

Therefore, God concurring above all, expressly with the works of Peter, we are obliged by divine faith to hold that God concurred approvingly with the work of Pope John Paul II, who laid down in Canon 332, that a pope resigns when a pope renounces his munus. Not at any other time or occasion.

But Pope Benedict XVI did not renounce his munus. He renounced the ministry he had been confided through the hands of the Cardinals.

Therefore, God could not have concurred approvingly with that act, because if He did, He would have made Jesus Christ out to be a liar, or the Gospel of Saint Matthew out to be a fraud, or the Church which proposes both to be believed without any doubt, a trickster. But in such a case, there would be no reason to even care who is the pope and who is not! The Catholic Faith would be a fraud and not worthy of any attention!

But that is an impossibility. Therefore, so is the first premise, namely, that God concurred approvingly with that act.

Therefore, God did not concur approvingly with the Declaratio as an act of papal resignation.

Therefore, Saint Robert Bellarmine would hold that he is still the pope.

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Our Lord did not call Simon, “the Rock”, for nothing

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

The student of the history of the Catholic Church cannot ignore the fact of its longevity. It is the only visible institution in the history of mankind to outlast every government and temporal power, and every other kind of institution — using the term properly — of mankind. Countless Empires, Kingdoms, Duchies, Principalities, Unions and Nations have come and gone, but the Catholic Church remains.

This truth is found also in regard to the Apostolic See: the institution of the Papacy.

A fisherman — we do not even know if he was literate — from Galilee one day drops his nets and follows Jesus’ call to be a fisher of men. He tramps around the dusty byways of Galilee for 3 years hearing Him preach and seeing Him work astounding miracles. And one day, after giving the right answer to a single question, he received in return, the promise of the an amazing office, and had his name changed, from Simon bar Jonah, to Cephas, the Rock — which is rendered in Latin, as “Peter”.

The meaning of this name has been variously explained by theologians and ecclesiastical writers for 2000 years, but, here I want to consider the effect of that name in history.

Because, if you read the history of the Church, you see that that Name also has a meaning: the Rock, against which every power which takes up its hand, has been broken and destroyed from history.

This fisherman, after many labors and wanderings, came to Rome, and probably was seen fishing along the Tiber, where the fish are wont to be seen, down near where the Via Conciliazione leads today. He preached Jesus and with another man, called Saul of Tarsus, but who changed his name to Paul, they founded the Catholic Church at Rome.

There was Nero, who put Saint Peter to death. But Nero was almost immediately murdered by his supporters.

There were 9 more persecutions in the Roman Empire, and every one failed to exterminate the Church at Rome. Each of the Emperors involved, was quickly removed from power by his enemies.

When the Roman Empire fell, the Church of Rome and its Pope remained. The entire inheritance, cultural and physical of the eternal city fell into the hands of the Church, in a historic irony the importance of which is not ignored by all historians of Rome. Even the chief title of the religious leader, the Bridge-builder, in Latin, Pontifex, was inherited by the successors of that Galilean fisherman.

The Lombards sought to subject the Pop to their authority in the 6th Century, but the Kingdom of the Lombards has passed into history. The Greek Emperors tried in the 7th and 8th centuries, and their Empire has long ago fallen. The German Emperors were rather unique in this that they often came to the help of the Apostolic See, when it was tossed hither and thither by the rival clans of Roman Nobility, all of which have passed into history.

In the Middle Ages, a King of France at the beginning of the fourteenth century, sent his thugs to beat the pope to death. And not only did he die shortly afterwards, his dynasty is extinct, and his Kingdom is no more.

In more recent centuries, the Kingdom of Piedmont — which renamed itself the Kingdom of Italy — attempted to exterminate the Papacy, but it too is no more. The very enemy of the Apostolic See, after little more than 70 years, was conquered by all the forces of the West, in the Second World War and the Dynasty which governed it remains still, in its male heirs, exiled from the Italian peninsula.

From this we can see, that the Apostolic See, the Office of Peter, is the Rock of history. It is a Rock like a shoal in the sea, where, if any man dare to chart a course against it, he is smashed and defeated.

For these reasons, we can be sure that we shall soon see the power of that gift which Our Lord gave to that Fisherman from Galilee. Those who attacked him over His book on Celibacy, will shortly see their entire project smashed.

It cannot be otherwise, because he alone is the True Peter, the true Rock of the Ages.

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CREDITS: The Featured Image if a photograph of Saint Peter’s Basilica, built over the spot where the Fisherman from Galilee was buried in 69 A. D.. It was taken by Br. Bugnolo.

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The Our Father: Remedy against the Church of Darkness

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

In the year of Our Lord, One Thousand, Eight-hundred and twenty, Bl. Anna Katerina Emmerich had a series of visions which spoke of a Church of Darkness and a dark Pope taking over the Church of Rome. As a remedy, Our Lady showed how if the faithful came before Her Basilica of Sainta Maria Maggiore at midnight and prayed with arms outstretched — after the manner of prayer Her Son prayed upon the Cross for the redemption of mankind — that soon the doors would open and the Church of Darkness be driven from the City.

In the details of that vision, there are 2 important facts: That Our Lady measures the minimum time She asks everyone to pray is three Our Fathers; and that the Saint accompanying the Blessed is Saint Francis of Assisi.

Saint Francis was very devoted to the Our Father. He requires the brothers of his Order to say 72 of them each day, in place of the 72 psalms which the clergy in his day said every day. But not only that, Saint Francis wrote the most sublime commentary on the Our Father every written, better even than that of Saint Thomas Aquinas.

These details leads one to conclude that Our Heavenly Mother is trying very gently to indicate the importance of the Our Father for the salvation of the Church today.

I have seen many treatises on Prayer, but in none of them have I seen an explanation of the importance of the Our Father. So I want to share some observations on this, to demonstrate that that single prayer is the most important in all the cosmos, and the most important for each of us, to arrive at our eternal destiny. Consequently, it is the essence of the Catholic religion.

Between the Alpha and the Omega

When you connect your starting point with your destination with a line, you have traced out the path of your earthly journey.  That path may not be straight, because this world is full of crooked things and obstacles for travelers.

But in celestial movements, when you connect starting points with destinations, the lines are always straight.

The same is true in the supernatural order of things.

Before the Creation there was nothing but God. And there is nothing in Creation that did not come from God, or was made out of or from the things which came from God. And in the End, when this world is destroyed, there will be nothing left, but what has arrived at God, in Heaven, and what has refused to arrive there, which will be cast into eternal Hell fire.

The line connecting God as the Beginning or Alpha of all things to God as the End or Omega of all things, is, thus, the cosmic journey of all creation. It is the very context of the being of all things, whether physical or spiritual, natural or supernatural. Not every creature is in motion along that itinerary, most of it is divinely elaborate landscape. But mankind was intended as a race to be the journeyman.

And this is why, Jesus Christ, the Eternal Son of God, taught us only 1 prayer: the Our Father. A lot of scholars and theologians and especially liturgists are embarrassed by this. They think Christ should have written a Missale or something, or at least put a Breviary into print. But He did not.

He did not, because God, being Infinite, know how to say the Infinite in the singular, in the tiny, in the details of everything which comes forth from His Mouth. This is what makes the words of Jesus Christ in the Gospel everlasting. There is just no end to the treasures to be revealed in them.

And the Our Father is no different.

Step back for a moment and consider the Our Father in its totality.  It is a prayer addressed to God the Father, the First Person of the Trinity, the principle of the whole Trinity, since it is from Him alone that both the other Two Persons proceed. The prayer itself ends with petitions for things which are necessary for us to arrive at Heaven, our last End, God Himself — in Whom Saint Francis says the Saints dwell.

So the Our Father is, in its few phrases, THE prayer for the Cosmic journey I just spoke of, because it connects us to  God as our First Cause, our Alpha, and to God as our Last End, or Omega. There is no greater prayer of spiritual orientation than that.

And this is, I believe, the hidden message in the revelations made to Bl. Anna Katerina Emmerich. The Church has come to the present crisis because way too many of those in the Church, Clergy first of all, have lost their orientation and are wandering like fallen stars, out of their proper positions. They have forgotten to attend to what the words of the Our Father mean.

This is why I say, that the Our Father is the very sum and essence of the Catholic Religion, because our Holy Faith has nothing to do with anything more than orientating us to God and directing us to live with Him forever, by faith in God, penance for our sins, and a humble service of the Divine Majesty.  Just as you cannot properly pray the Our Father without turning to Him, so the Mass should always be offered with the whole congregation, priest included, facing the Father, ad orientem.

Moreover, just as there is no one who knows how to return to the Father except the Son Who has come down from the Father, so there is no sanity in religion without unswering adherence to all which the Son has established and how He established it.

All of this is put in question and denied in practice by those how hold that a heretic, apostate and uncanonically elected man is indubitably the Pope. That is like saying the road side snake oil peddler is your travel agent!

Words have meaning. If you deny that, you cannot even begin to pray the Our Father. Words have meaning, whether those words are ministerium and munus, or Pater Noster qui est in caelis….

That is also why it is cosmic insanity to change the words of the Our Father.

The Our Father is the most sublime prayer, when we say it, we should mean what we say, and because of its importance in the cosmic scale of things, IF WE DO NOT MEAN what we say when we pray the Our Father, we are truly lost.

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CREDITS: The Featured Image is an image of Bloch’s, Sermon on the Mount, painted in 1980, and is thus in the public domain.

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In the Footsteps of Christ Crucified

Jesus-Picture-Carrying-Cross-The-Passion-Of-Christ-Movie

A SERIES OF MEDITATIONS FOR HOLY WEEK

In the present crisis of faith, which has broken out within the Catholic Church, on account of the perfidy of those to whom the preaching of the Gospel has been entrusted,  Catholics, who seek true spiritual guidance, can look to the exhortation of Pope Leo XIII, in his Encyclical Letter, Sapientiae Christianae, of January 10, 1890, in particular, where he remonstrates with all of the faithful in such a crisis, saying:

To recoil before an enemy, or to keep silence when from all sides such clamors are raised against truth, is the part of a man either devoid of character or who entertains doubt as to the truth of what he professes to believe.

To doubt the truth of even 1 revealed doctrine taught by Our Lord, by His Apostles, in Sacred Scripture or in Sacred Tradition, is, let us be frank, a mortal sin meriting eternal damnation, because it breaks the bond of trust which a Catholic ought to have in God His Savior.  This, alas, is the sin of so many who are “Catholics” in name.

But another mortal sin, one of omission, is that of those who are “devoid of character”.  In our own age, when so many Catholics, even otherwise good or devout ones, sit nightly at the feet of the pulpit of the television, neglecting prayer and meditation and the reading of the writings of the Saints of old, nearly every Catholic is lacking in the virtues necessary to withstand the apostasy of our age, which is being promoted by clergy who long ago accommodated themselves to the toleration of the abominations of impurity and sacrilege in the Church, or who have wedded their souls to false obedience out of self-interest.

The near universal silence of the clergy against speaking against the Kasper thesis has astounded many a Catholic, because they presumed, out of the faith which has come to us from the Apostles, that the clergy are men of character who would speak up:  not reading the signs of the times, which clearly indicate that the present apostasy of disbelief and of silence was prepared long ago, when the Modernists pushed for and obtained at the Second Vatican Council, documents which speak ambiguously and even erroneously about our Holy Faith, in every aspect of Her life and religion.

The darkness of our age being so profound and universal, the weak soul is easily overcome by despair.  This despair comes easily upon the souls who pray but little, and who have drunk either not at all or only in a shallow manner from the clear springs of authentic Catholic meditation, indicated so clearly by the great Saints of old, like St. Teresa of Avila, whose 500th birthday the Church recalled yesterday, March 28, 2015.

There is a Remedy for this lack of Character

And it is found in a wholesome meditation on the duties which each of us have towards Our Lord and Master, Jesus Christ. But not just any remembrance of Him in His Passion, but one which forces us by direct consideration to confront the lack of character, in our selves, which plagues our age, and which Pope Leo XIII laments in such strong words.

Our Lord and Savior said:  “You cannot be My disciples, if you do not renounce yourself, take up your cross, and follow Me.” (cf. Luke 14:27; Matthew 16:24) The Faith teaches us that the footsteps of Christ Crucified lead to the glory of His Resurrection.  But even with this knowledge it is difficult for us sinners, beguiled by sins and attached to this world, to have the fortitude, the courage and the hope necessary to put these words, so mysterious and decisive, into practice.

The meditations which follow, during this Holy Week of prayer are intended to be a means to heal this spiritual malady, so that we, sinners, can grow in grace and be sanctified in the following of the Crucified. We want to be with Jesus in eternity, and hence we take up our cross so as to arrive at His glory, with the help of mediation on His Passion.

Let us, therefore, dedicate this most holiest of Weeks to such meditations, and put aside, for this week, the vain preoccupation with things, websites, blogs and social communications which distract the soul from its most important duty, conforming itself to the will of God in all things, in all affections, in all thoughts, in all judgements, in all desires, in all hopes, in all beliefs, in all loves.

And to aide in that, the From Rome Blog will now begin a series of meditations, entitled:

Prayers & Meditations for the following of Christ Crucified

O Jesus, my only Savior:  Who became Man so that thou might die for me; Who fasted forty days in the desert, neither eating nor drinking, so as to give me the courage to mortify myself; Who walked the roads of the Holy Land to give me an example in the acceptance of the little sufferings of daily life; Who endured the insults, the outrages and the disdain of Thy enemies, to teach me to love my enemies; Who, at last, embraced the Cross to save mankind from the punishment of Hell, indicating thereby, too, the path necessary for my own salvation:  come to my aide!

I confess that I am a weak, vicious and vile sinner.  I know only how to lament my own sufferings, and recount the blessings others receive.

When I contemplate Thy virtue and Thy zeal to save souls, I recognize that I do not have a heart like Thine, I do not have a spirit like Thine, I do not have the vision like Thine!  O, my dear Jesus:  seeing that Thou hast said:  “He who does not take up his cross and follow Me, cannot be My disciple,” (Luke 14:27), and “If anyone would come after Me, let him renounce himself, take up his cross and follow Me,” (Matthew 16:24), and seeing that I believe that Thou would never command the impossible, I trust that Thou will give me the grace to put these words into practice, if I ask Thee.

O my good Jesus! I want so much to follow Thee!  Hence, I beg Thee, o Most Merciful Lord, to grant me the grace, the light and the heart to be Thy true disciple, to carry my cross and follow Thee, today and for the rest of my life.

We adore Thee, o Christ, and we bless Thee,
because by means of Thy Holy Cross,
Thou hast redeemed the world, with Mary!

To follow Jesus, you need to believe in Jesus!

O Jesus, when the crowd of Jews asked Thee:  “Who is this ‘Son of Man’?”, Thou replied:  “The Light is still with you for a little while; walk while you have the light, so that you might not be overcome by the darkness, because he who walks in darkness, knows not where he goes.  While you have the light, believe in the Light, so that you might  become sons of the Light.” (John 12:31-36)

With these words Thou taught us that it is absolutely necessary that we have faith in Thee, and not only a trust that Thou will be kind towards us.  If we accept Thee simply as a good preacher, listening but not changing our life, our mind and our heart, it shall be in vain that we have listened to Thee.

Thy words are light for us in this world of darkness.  If we harken unto them and put them into practice, we will become sons of the Light; if we do not put them in practice, we shall lose the Light which Thou are.  Hence, to begin to follow Thee is not a devotion for the perfect, it is the sole road to my salvation and for the salvation of all.

O Jesus, my Divine and True Teacher, guide me to Thy Kingdom of Light; lead me on high, far from the shadows of this world!  Be my Companion along my own road to Calvary, which is the only escape for me from my sins and vices, which threaten so to swallow me up!  Save me, O Savior of the World! and grant me to desire as much to be saved, as Thou desire to save me!

O Lord, by the sign of Thy Cross,
deliver us from our enemies!

 Download in PDF format, the entire booklet of meditations

Strike the Shepherd and the sheep of the Flock will scatter

Jesus is the ever faithful, Good Shepherd, who uses true mercy and true justice for one and all.
Jesus is the ever faithful, Good Shepherd, Who uses true mercy and true justice for one and all.

THE SIN OF SCHISM ACCORDING TO THE TEACHING OF OUR LORD

Rome, March 17, 2015:  On the Feast of the great Roman Saint, it will be very useful to consider more profoundly the teaching of Our Lord, which St. Patrick exemplified in his life, and this in specific regard to the sin of Schism.

Every sin, being a moral failure, is not something essentially positive, but rather negative. That is, a sin is not the presence so much of evil, but the absence of a moral good habit or act which should have been, but was not.

For example, the sin of lying consists in saying what is not in conformity to the truth, while asserting that it is.  The moral lack in the sin of lying is the assertion that the falsehood is true.  Thus, if one were to say, “1+1=3 is true”, he lies; but if one were to say, “1+1=3 is false”, he tells the truth.

The same applies to the sin of Schism.  Schism is the sin of separation between members of the Church.  It consists in the willful deliberate refusal of communion with another member of Christ’s One True Mystical Body.

We speak of the Church after the metaphor of a human body, following the teaching of St. Paul the Apostle, who was first to use this metaphor explicitly, though the teaching itself comes from Our Lord Jesus Christ, Who when He appeared in glory to the Apostle on the road to Damascus, said, “Saul, Saul, why doest thou persecute Me?” (Acts 9:4)

In saying these words, Our Lord identified the Christians persecuted by Saul, the Jew, with Himself in the most intimate manner possible.  Let’s be clear, however: Our Lord was using a Hebraic metaphor, a “poetic exaggeration”, we might say in modern English, because there is a real and ontological distinction between God and Christians, and between Christ and His followers.  St. Paul, being a Jew and trained in the traditions of scriptural exposition which were common among the Pharisees of that age, understood this and thus spoke of the Church as “Christ’s Body”, comparing Our Lord to its head and believers to its members. He does this in the 12th chapter of his First Letter to the Corinthians, where he says, “Now you are the body of Christ, and members of member”.

St. Paul and St. Thomas on the sin of Schism

It was St. Paul, ever faithful to Our Lord and every mindful of His words and teaching, who first spoke of the sin of schism explicitly, in reference to the Church, conceived as a body.  His words are significant:

That there might be no schism in the body; but the members might be mutually careful one for another. (1 Cor. 12:25)

That is, the Apostle notes that the sin of division in the Church is caused by a lack of care of one member for another.  St. Thomas Aquinas will explicate this teaching of St. Paul and point out that the sin of schism is formally a sin against the supernatural charity which 1 Christian should have for another.  In his Summa Theologica, IIa IIa, q. 39, the Angelic Doctor, responding to the Question, “Whether the Sin of Schism is a special sin?”, responds (bold facing our own):

I answer that, As Isidore says (Etym. viii, 3), schism takes its name “from being a scission of minds,” and scission is opposed to unity. Wherefore the sin of schism is one that is directly and essentially opposed to unity. For in the moral, as in the physical order, the species is not constituted by that which is accidental. Now, in the moral order, the essential is that which is intended, and that which results beside the intention, is, as it were, accidental. Hence the sin of schism is, properly speaking, a special sin, for the reason that the schismatic intends to sever himself from that unity which is the effect of charity: because charity unites not only one person to another with the bond of spiritual love, but also the whole Church in unity of spirit.

Our Lord’s teaching on the sin of Schism

Our Lord’s teaching, however, is much more comprehensive and profound than the explications given by St. Paul or St. Thomas Aquinas.  In Our Lord’s mind, His believers are to Him as the sheep of a flock are to its shepherd.  He speaks of this explicitly when He says,

31Then Jesus said to them: All you shall be scandalized in me this night. For it is written: I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be dispersed. 32But after I shall be risen again, I will go before you into Galilee. 33And Peter answering, said to him: Although all shall be scandalized in thee, I will never be scandalized. 34Jesus said to him: Amen I say to thee, that in this night before the cock crow, thou wilt deny me thrice. 35Peter saith to him: Yea, though I should die with thee, I will not deny thee. And in like manner said all the disciples. (Mt. 26:31-35)

That these words of Our Lord speak of many things, no one can deny, since Our Lord in speaking spoke to teach us all that we needed for our salvation unto the end of time, He speaks in such a manner that many truths are contained in a few words.  The simple sense of Our Lord’s words here regard the necessary unity and dependence of His believers on His leadership in all matters, but specifically in religious ones.

But since Our Lord Himself is, as He says, the Principle of Unity in the Church, then it follows that whenever there is a violation of that unity, the sin involves in some manner an attack on that Principle, and thus an attack on Himself.  Thus every sin of schism is a sin which consists in or results from an attack on His Authority as King, Messiah, or High Priest.

Our Lord’s teaching is more comprehensive

For this reason, Our Lord’s teaching, as we should expect, is must richer than that of St. Paul or St. Thomas Aquinas, even though the latter two Saints give us an authentic understanding of what Our Lord is teaching us about the gravity of the sin of schism.  With St. Paul as our guide, we understand that the Church is identified as a body with Our Lord as her Head.  Thus the sin of schism, which in visible matters involves different members of the Church, can be understood as a whole in a single sin against the Person of Our Lord.  St. Thomas shows that this sin consists chiefly in a failure to love as Our Lord wants and as is required by the unity of the Church.  And indeed, love for self, is what keeps every member of a human body working for the life of each member and the unity of the whole body.

The species of this sin

Thus the causes of schism are far more than just the immediate reasons for the division which arises. The sin of schism is also something which comprises much more than a separation of the faithful from the Pope.  A great number of authors, especially in Canon Law, have focused on this latter species of the sin of schism, to the near exclusion of the others.  For this reason, it will be useful to enumerate all the species of this sin.

Now, just as a human body can be separated by placing a division between any two members, so the sin of schism in the Church can occur by any separation between any two or more members in the Church.  Thus, St. Paul speaks of the many sins of division in the Church at Corinth (cf. 1 Corinthians).

Therefore, the sin of schism can occur when

  1. a Christian separates Himself from the legitimate authority which Christ gave to His Apostles, Sts. Peter and the Eleven, — which they handed down, respectively, to the Pope and to the Bishops — to rule in His stead until He returns in glory.
  2. a Christian separates Himself from another christian, who believes all which Christ taught.
  3. a Christian, who has received authority to govern some portion of the flock (Bishop) or the whole (the Pope), separates himself from a Christian who is faithful to Christ.

I have added, “who is faithful to Christ” and “who believes all which Christ taught”  and “legitimate” to indicate that there are some just bounds which define when a division is sinful or not.  Obviously, as St. John the Apostle teaches, a Christian who does not believe rightly, after the 2nd or 3rd admonition to repent — and who does not repent — is to be avoided. This is the source of the Catholic teaching on excommunicatio vitandorum, that is excommunication of shunning.  Such is not a sin but a work of charity, aimed at calling the one not rightly believing to repentance.  And such is not a sin of schism, because it is commanded by the Apostle St. John to preserve true charity.

Some Historical examples of the Sin of Schism

Not all schisms in the Church are the same, therefore.  Some never enter into the historical record: these involve individuals, who either had a private disagreement (like a priest and bishop who refused meeting one another over a personal disagreement which had nothing to do with the faith, or some matter which did not touch upon doctrine, such as the choice of flowers for a specific feast day).  Others are noted in history books.

Of these the more famous ones are the great Schism which arose in 1048 between the Pope and the Patriarch of Constantinople, to which many other Bishops in the East, over time, adhered.  This is called the Schism between East & West, or the Greek Schism.

Another was the division which arose in the Church following the election of Pope Urban VI in 1378, when on account of the dislike in which some Cardinals held him, they separated from him and elected Count Robert of Geneva as Pope Clement VII.  This schism did not involve the sin of separation for all who sided with Pope Clement VII, since many did not know or have the ability to know of the facts of the disputed election, many adhered to one side or another on the basis of whom they had already given their personal trust to.  Thus many Catholic nations were in schism with many others, but not in their own hearts against the authority of the Pope, per se.

There have been many other historically important schisms, as can be read of in history books: the Acacian Schism, the Luciferian Schism in Sardinia & Iberia, the Donatist schism in North Africa etc..

Causes of Schism

The causes of Schism are thus many.  A Schism can arise by refusal of the legitimate authority of the Roman Pontiff, totally, or in regard to some specific binding or non binding decision.  It can arise by some unjust persecution or refusal of communion by the Pope regarding some individual or groups of individuals, e. g., those who celebrate in the Slavonic rather than in the Latin rite (this happened to Sts. Cyril and Methodius).  It can arise because the Pope refuses to uphold the faith, dignity or unity of the Church, as when St. Bernard of Clairvaux and the Bishops of Burgundy threatened the Pope with excommunication for not punishing the usurpation of the right of investiture for Bishops.

Not every Schism, therefore, is a sin for both sides involved.  Nor is the sin always a sin of subjects toward superiors.

“Strike the Shepherd and the flock will scatter”:  Thus, when a superior by his action or inaction attacks or denies or obstructs the teaching or will of Our Lord for his Church, subjects who have the right to uphold these and demand these from their superior can legitimately threaten or withdraw subjection from their superior, to protect themselves from his sin or heresy.

A superior can refuse communion with a subject, for similar sins, such as heresy or disobedience.

Individuals can refuse communion with other individuals for the same reason.

In all such cases, the one who deviates from the faith of the Church, the teachings of Christ or the disciplines which He has established directly or through the Apostles or the Church throughout the ages, are the ones guilty of the sin of Schism.

In our own days, when there are many cases of Bishops persecuting priests for their fidelity to the Magisterium, to right morals, or to the Liturgy, we have cases of the sin of schism which are committed by Bishops.  Pope Paul VI’s insistence that no one celebrate the Ancient Roman Rite gave rise to the many injustices which he imposed upon the Society of St. Pius X and their founder Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre.*  Bishop Fellay’s disagreement with and treatment of Bishop Richard Williamson gave rise to the division in the that same Society, which is the preambulary cause to the ordination of a new bishop this Thursday in Brazil, by Bishop Williamson (so that the faithful who attend their chapels might receive the sacraments and have priests to serve their needs).

In other cases, where presumptuous men usurp the authority of local bishops, because they love power and are proud, the sin of schism is their own.

Each case has to be examined. But all Catholics, especially those not involved in the dispute, should remain faithful to Christ and united to Him and urge the erring side(s) to reconciliation.

_____________________

* I say “injustices”, because if one were only to review the many heresies and aberrations in the Neo-Catecumenical Movement, one’s head would spin at the consideration of why they have such high approval from Popes John Paul II and Francis, while the Archbishop was punished for believing, doing and praying as Catholic bishops did for 2000 years (as is his duty) and providing for the faithful who desire to continue to do this, until the end of time (as is their right by Baptism).

In My hour of darkness, will you stand by Me?

When He is reviled by High Priests & theologians, His Disciples remain silent?

Featured Image -- 1451Rome, March 5, 2015:  In a telling editorial, Edward Pentin, a noted journalist who covers the Vatican, describes the woeful situation in the Catholic Church under Pope Francis:

One of the most frustrating aspects of covering the Church today is the unwillingness of trusted and reliable sources to go on the record. Strangely, this seems most common when it comes to defending doctrine, and the Church generally, in the face of attack.

Whether it’s Church teaching coming under fire at the Synod on the Family, Vatican officials with vitally important and helpful information to share, or German bishops outnumbered by their dissenting brother bishops, few appear willing to go public and speak up for Christ and the truth…

Read the rest of his piece, entitled, “Why the Reticence in the Face of Attacks on the Church?”, at the National Catholic Register.

Pentin goes on to speculate as to the causes, but omits the most probable one of all.  Jorge Mario Bergoglio was notorious, in his tenure as Archbishop of Buenos Aries, for violently castigating those with whom he disagreed, going so far as to use crude and vulgar insults as he shouted at them, in person, or on the phone.

But, let us not pretend otherwise, it is not the Church alone which is being attacked by the vile proposals of “Team Bergoglio” theologians like Cardinal Kasper or Cardinal Marx, it is Jesus Christ Himself who is being denied in His teachings regarding the necessity of both faith and penance for salvation, as a prerequisite for receiving His love in the Eucharist.

Indeed, it is quite logical, that those who would crucify the Lord anew by a sacrilegious communion, and who in fact are currently crucifying Him by such unworthy communions — for all who oppose Christ’s teachings are in mortal sin and receive sacrilegiously — be refused from receiving Him, Who died the bloody death on the Cross to deliver them from the Prince of Darkness and Lies, and transfer them into the Kingdom of Light, Truth and Purity.

That so many Cardinals, Bishops, priests, deacons and religious, men and women, are silent in the face of these attacks on the Person of Our Lord, recalls the treachery and cowardice of the 11 Apostles who abandoned Our Lord in the Garden of Gethsemane in 33 A. D..

Ten of them had this excuse, that Our Lord had not yet risen from the dead, and they had not yet received the Holy Spirit.

But none of those who are silent today, have this excuse.

Clergy and religious who are silent because they fear a phone call from a mad-superior who wants to punish all who will not go along with open apostasy from Christ their Lord, are not worthy of Jesus Christ.  Such without a doubt shall burn for all eternity in the pit of Hell with Judas Iscariot at their side.

But for those who claim some devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary, and have some likeness to the virgins St. John, St. Mary Magdalene and St. Martha, IT IS YOUR DUTY TO STAND BY THE CROSS AND SPEAK OUT, for Our Lord has no voice to reach the ears of sinners, but through YOU!