Catholic Church

The Pennsylvania grand jury report and the Catholic Church in America

The Pennsylvania grand jury report has been released.

Three things:

  1. About time;
  2. Much-needed purification at last of a fraction of the Catholic Church in America (the rest similarly needs to be purified – and this includes Catholic ‘reporting institutions’, not just dioceses and clerics. The rot is everywhere and there is written evidence of it);
  3. Again, about time.

Pray for everyone involved, in particular the victims and all those who remain in denial.

The Third Passover, not the Second Coming

Why are you so afraid, O you of little faith? (Mt 8:26).

Many in the Church these days, in particular traditional and traditionalist Catholics, as well as Evangelical Christians, predominantly located in America and in the Anglo-Saxon world, believe that we are fast approaching the time of the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. They speak, both in content and in tone, as though the end of the world is nigh. However, these Catholics and Christians are mistaken in both their ‘predictions’ and beliefs, not to mention their desires.

This is not the time of the Second Coming; the exact time and day of which is not even known to Christ, but to the Father alone. It is the time of the Third Passover, the crossing over from the era of sin and disorder into the era of holiness, peace, and order; the era of joy on earth, the Reign of the Divine Will.

A few indicators below once again, therefore, for the more skeptical, from the timeline of salvation history, to dispel the confusion that continues to be present on this issue.

Before the Second Coming:

  1. There will be the unification of Judaism and Christianity under the banner of Christ the Messiah. This has not yet happened;
  2. There will be the era of peace that is mentioned in the Book of Revelation. This has not yet happened;
  3. There will be the illumination of all consciences, also mentioned in the Book of Revelation. This has not yet happened;
  4. There will be the reunification of all the Christian churches and ecclesial communities in accordance with Christ’s prayer to the Father, “May they be one as We are One.” This has not yet happened;
  5. There will be a worldwide evangelization and rise of Christianity as has never been witnessed before, and in comparison to which previous evangelizations will pale. This has not yet happened;
  6. There will be the coming of the AntiChrist himself (not antichrists) and the global persecution of Christians. This will happen after #1 through #5 above, none of which have so far happened.

Several point to the current period of generalized (and increasing) apostasy from the Faith as the indicator that the Second Coming is near. Again, however, these people are missing one simple fact: Two periods of generalized apostasy will take place before the Second Coming, not one. The first period is happening now. The second period will not happen before #1 through #5 above have occurred and been completed in time.

Thus, the conflation of the first period of apostasy with the second period is an outright error and a gross misunderstanding of the location of our present time in salvation history. It is a misunderstanding born of fear (which always originates with Satan), not of faith (which always originates with God). An error born of vincible or invincible ignorance.

Further, the coming of the Kingdom “on earth as it is in heaven” (#2 above; the era of peace) has not yet occurred. This coming refers not to the (visible) Second Coming of Christ in glory, but to the (invisible) coming of the Kingdom within the heart of the soul (the nous) of man. It is the period of the intermediate coming that is (1) the commencement of deification, (2) the reign of the Father on earth, with everyone being able to hear Him and know that He is, indeed, their Father; (3) the temporary chaining of Satan and his demons by the Archangel Michael for a period of time, so that peace can truly reign on earth; (4) the Eucharistic reign whereby Adoration will once again become central to the prayer life of humankind and of the Church in every single part of the world, (5) the reign of the Holy Spirit and the consequent onset of the Second Pentecost, which will parallel the First Pentecost in terms of the stupefying and visible miracles that will occur; and (6) the triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. This is all still the era of Divine Mercy.

What humanity is going through right now is the period of the Third Passover, which is the necessary period of purification before illumination occurs, so that deification can commence.

Capital punishment and the ordinary magisterium of Pope Francis

I desire mercy, not sacrifice (Hos 6:6; Mt 9:13).

Several conservative Catholics in the United States of America are up in arms against the latest declaration of Pope Francis in relation to the death penalty and its inadmissibility. They are particularly miffed that he has “dared” to make sure that the Catechism of the Catholic Church accurately reflects the needs of our times. The below, therefore, bears repeating as many (wilful traditionalist clerics included) believe that to be Catholic, they do not need to follow what the Pope says, but only what he says if it happens to agree with whatever their particular religiopolitical-ideological stance might be.

Pride and spiritual arrogance at their best.

So, here goes:

Public statements by the Pope that do not qualify as ordinary and universal magisterium also have an authority that Catholics are not free to dismiss. They are required to give such teachings religious submission in accordance with the declaration of Vatican Council II as follows: Bishops, teaching in communion with the Roman Pontiff, are to be respected by all as witnesses to divine and Catholic truth. In matters of faith and morals, the bishops speak in the name of Christ and the faithful are to accept their teaching and adhere to it with a religious assent. This religious submission of mind and will must be shown in a special way to the authentic magisterium of the Roman Pontiff, even when he is not speaking ex cathedra; that is, it must be shown in such a way that his supreme magisterium is acknowledged with reverence, the judgments made by him are sincerely adhered to, according to his manifest mind and will. His mind and will in the matter may be known either from the character of the documents, from his frequent repetition of the same doctrine, or from his manner of speaking (Lumen Gentium, Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, §25).

Many American Catholics, some clerics included, keep confusing the ordinary magisterium of Pope Francis for his ordinary and universal magisterium; to speak only of parts of the ordinary part, not the extraordinary part, of the teaching office of the Catholic Church.

They are wrong.

The Pope, like all other Popes before him, has both the ordinary magisterium and the ordinary and universal magisterium. It is under the former that the death penalty issue has been addressed, not under the latter, and this magisterial route, as shown above, also requires acceptance of it and religious assent – if you want to be, at the very least, minimally Catholic (let alone hard-identity Catholic).

A different route, however, is always possible for the wilful, the stubborn, the spiritually proud (non)cognoscenti: those who believe they know God’s mind and will more than anyone else, and His desires for all humanity since prior to the beginning of time. The route is this:

Go and set up your own church like Fr. Martin Luther, O.S.A., did in 1517. After all, it’s not like setting up one’s own church, with one’s own particular magisterium, and one’s own cult of personality (and followership) is not in the ‘best’ traditions of American church life, since the nation’s inception over 250 years ago! Then you can be your own (little p) pope. You can lay down whichever law you want, however you want it, with whatever stipulations and ‘membership requirements’ you want, in wherever ‘refuge’ you want, and no one will contradict you. You will be the head honcho and, as the saying goes, everyone will live happily ever after.

You will be in ‘good’ company – the company of the most famous, spiritually rebellious ‘church’ father. Just do not expect to attain Heaven and life with the Holy Trinity for eternity, unless you genuinely turn back to God and His One, True Church, because extra ecclesiam nulla salus.

New litmus test and the de facto schism in the Catholic Church in America

Ubi Petrus, ibi Ecclesia, ibi Deus.

Given the Pope’s declaration of the inadmissibility of the death penalty in all cases and his instruction to revise the Catechism of Catholic Church in this regard, the de facto schism in the Catholic Church in the United States is now coming to the fore. It is going to be very easy for everyone to know who is truly still a faithful son or daughter of the Church and who is, in effect, part of the parallel church, the false church, that has been so undeniably set up, together with its parallel magisterium.

Already, overt rebellion is in the ranks, because many American Catholics refuse to accept that you do not kill people, no matter what they might have done. What is common sense even for children these days just seems to keep flying right over the heads and hearts of said Catholics, because they keep rejecting the humility needed to understand God and His desires for humanity – desires since the very beginning of time.

Thus, instead of admitting that God Himself preserved Qayin, the first human murderer, from capital punishment, they prefer to pridefully blame the Pope for “heresy” or a “rupture with continuity,” neither of which claims are grounded in any kind of hermeneutical reality. Such Catholics concurrently keep refusing to understand the workings of the prevenient grace of God, which at its most basic means that no validly-elected Pope, from the time of Peter through the Pope at the very end of all time, can ever fall into heresy (papal indefectibility). You can learn more about that here.

Ego sum cum Papa semper (Saint George Preca).

The acceptance of the above inadmissibility of capital punishment in this day and age is, therefore, going to be, for at least American Catholics (and many other Catholics primarily in the Anglo-Saxon world), the litmus test of their fidelity or infidelity to God and to the Catholic Church as founded by Jesus Christ.

If you want to discern whether someone belongs to the real Church or to the false church, just ask them if they support the death penalty. There is no confusion any more on this issue (Pope Francis has closed the loopholes), except for those who deliberately insist on remaining spiritually blind. You will be surprised at some of the responses you may get.

Pope Francis declares the death penalty inadmissible in all cases

Whosoever shall kill Qayin, shall be punished sevenfold. And the Lord set a mark upon Qayin, so that whoever found him should not kill him (Gn 4:15).

Pope Francis, elaborating the teachings of the Catholic Church on capital punishment and developing the teachings of Saint John Paul II and Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI on the issue, has at last declared openly that “The Church teaches, in the light of the Gospel, that the death penalty is inadmissible because it is an attack on the inviolability and dignity of the person.” He has also instructed that the Catechism of the Catholic Church be accordingly updated (§2267).

To understand more about this long-due elaboration of the Faith and its grounded hermeneutic of continuity with previous teachings, you can read more at Is the Death Penalty Just? This addresses the issue of capital punishment from Blessed Paul XVI through the teachings of the Church up to the end of 2017.

The declaration of Pope Francis is of particular importance and implication in this day and age, given the barbaric nature of capital punishment that is still meted out without hesitation (if not with actual sadistic glee) in the United States – a punishment cheered-for by many American Catholics and White Evangelicals alike “in the Name of God” – because the US is still supposed to be the most ‘civilized’ country in the world.

Where is God? – A call to the Catholic Church in America

We all know about the latest sex abuse scandals at present emerging from the Catholic Church in the United States, especially in relation to senior, most influential clerics in the nation being involved this time not with minors, but with not-fully-consenting adults (ergo non-consenting); in particular, chronologically adult males. Reams upon reams of commentary and judgments have been written over the past couple of weeks in this regard, at every level of the Church in America (and even more). But in all the discourses on the above, one thing remained (and remains) missing, which is notable by its very lack. That one thing is:

Where is God in all this?

Why has there been zero reference by anyone, anywhere, to the causal relationship between impurity* and the fact that God cannot reside where the darkness of serious sin abides? (The sin of the sexual abuse itself and the sin of the abuse of power, to mention just the minimally obvious). Why has no one spoken of the grief that the abusers (a term here comprising both the abusers themselves and their omerta’-enabling peers) have caused not just to their victims, but also to God; the God Who is Immaculate?

Is it possible that no one cares?

In all the discourses set forth to date, every possible ramification of the above abuse has been discussed to death by the Church-at-large from every imaginable standpoint: legal, civil, moral, ethical, and so on. Yet, in a parallel manner to what happened originally with the Dallas Charter, all of these dimensions have been addressed from a purely humanistic context. None of them included even a mere mention – or even just a wink and a nod – about the direct, causal relationship outlined in the previous paragraph.

Why not?

How can you claim to be a voice for the Church – the voice of the Church, hence the voice for God – when you cannot acknowledge in public what you have done to God Himself, the Pure God, for the sake of power; personal and institutional power? Because, make no mistake, this is all about power; not about sexual abuse per se, which is egregious enough in itself, but about the deliberate abuse of power. The sexual abuse is just a first-order symptom, not a second-order cause. How can you perpetrate seemingly without hesitation, in public, one of the first sins of Adam – the deflection of your personal responsibility onto others in order to safeguard your hide/s?

Where is the role of grace in your lives and your cooperation with grace?

Silence is consent by the omission of speech to the contrary. The Church is not yours. It was given to you by God, for God and His people. It was never given to you, to become your personal playground. So, where is your accountability to God – the Father of all those you have abused by both your actions and lack of action? Has it not occurred to you that He is allowing all this to come to public light, because you have remained intransigent in your deliberate noncompliance with His desires for His people?

Do you not care one iota about how you have wounded Him and betrayed His trust?

Do you no longer believe?

*Not taken to mean only homosexual impurity as an ultra-conservative faction in the Church would like to reinterpret all of the above for their own personal-religiopolitical agenda.

More lies by the laity in the Catholic Church in America (2)

Some more lies being propagated by the laity, especially ‘professional’ Catholics, in the Church in America (and elsewhere):

  1. There is no hope for “evil” people to be saved, because they are evil. They will “never find rest in this life or the next”* – NOT. (A) No such thing as “evil people” exist, because every human person is made in the image of God. There is a major difference between image and likeness. (B) There is no such thing as “never” finding rest “in either this life or the next,” no matter one’s sinfulness and consequently fractured likeness, because God’s mercy is infinite and always trumps His justice. Yes, the mercy of God is a scandal to many, including to several ‘good’ Catholics. (C) Every person is given one last chance at the very moment of their passing;
  2. Atheists and “pagans” cannot be saved. Only “we Christians” can be saved** – NOT. (A) The Holy Spirit blows where He wills. Both baptism by desire and baptism by blood lead to the fullness of sanctifying grace and the removal of original sin, not just baptism by water. What may be invisible to men in the deepest recesses of the heart of man is neither invisible nor unacceptable to God. (B) Not all Christians are saved and finish the race well (cf. 2 Tim 4:7). It is easier for a good-willed atheist or pagan to reach Heaven than it is for a Christian or Catholic who is self-righteous. (C) See option C in #1 above;
  3. It is impossible for atheists and pagans to have good will and/or do good, because they do not know God – NOT. Because an atheist or a pagan (to use the same language) may not know God does not mean they cannot possess good will and/or do good. God, Who is the source of all good, has His image imprinted on their souls just the same as it is imprinted on the souls of Christians (see #1 above). Further, the natural order and natural law are similarly imprinted and present. Hence natural good will and goodness with its consequent acts can still be present;
  4. Only the baptized are children of God – NOT. (A) God is the Creator of every single person ever made and who will be made until the end of all time. In that sense He is their Father and they are His children. (B) It is true that for a human person to become a son/daughter of God by adoption, in the sense of becoming a partaker of the divine nature (2 P 1:4), one needs to have been baptized. However, that is not restricted to baptism by water (see #2 above).

*To make this claim, especially with impunity, is to commit the exact same sin of the chief priests in relation to Judas Iscariot. A sin born of hatred.

**To make this claim is to commit the sin parallel to that of the Pharisees in the time of Jesus Christ. A sin born of pride.

It is ironic that those who would write the most about hamartiology not infrequently end up committing those very same sins they tend to rail most loudly against. This is permitted, albeit not willed, by God to teach them humility.

Lies by the laity in the Catholic Church in America (1)

Below are some of the lies being propagated by a very vocal segment of the Catholic laity in the Church, particularly in America (and elsewhere). More lies will be addressed here as they arise, so that the sheep will not be taken in by the wolves who keep pretending to ‘save the Church’ from Herself:

  1. The entire hierarchy is “infested with demonic possession” – NOT. The Catholic Church is blessed with several priests who are, in fact, priests after the Divine Heart of God the Father. And they are not traditionalist either;
  2. Pope Francis “and his cronies continue to desecrate and annihilate our Christian heritage” – NOT. Just because they may not run the institutional Church according to your liking does not mean you are right;
  3. Pope Francis is visiting Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI and discussing things with him about the Church, because the latter is still the one running the show, while the former is “just the legal Pope” – NOT. Pope Francis is not the proverbial puppet on a string, not to mention Benedict’s explicit and public commitment of obedience to Francis (not from Francis);
  4. The sacraments of the Catholic Church are “all being stripped of their supernatural dimension” – NOT. A physical impossibility as that dimension has been guaranteed by God Himself;
  5. The Catholic Church is “being coopted as a political rallying point for the formation of the New World Order” – NOT. If you are obsessed with two-party politics and ‘Armageddon’ scenarios, you will be capable of seeing nothing outside of that restrictive lens.
  6. “95% of Catholics are not Catholic” – NOT. Apart from the unsubstantiated figure, this is another physical impossibility. If you were baptized into the Catholic Church, you are Catholic whether you or anyone else likes it or not. That does not mean you are necessarily a ‘good Catholic.’ However, you remain Catholic nonetheless.

It never fails to amaze at how many tend to be taken in by the above, given how manifestly blatant such lies and deceptions are.

Ideologization of the Catholic Faith in America

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The past few years, but with much greater intensity and pervasiveness over the last two years, there has been a strong ideologization of the Catholic Faith by the laity and “professional Catholics” (but not limited to them) in the United States for political and/or self-serving purposes. Many conservative Catholics, in particular the “Bible-thumpers” who go around attempting to ‘evangelize’ with Scripture in the one hand and guns in the other hand, have tried hijacking the Faith into a spiritual doppelgaenger of Trump’s Republican Party – proselytization for political ambition. Other Catholics, many of them liberal (but not all), have used it as ‘currency’ to overtly try currying favor with the ‘pro-lifers’ as anti-abortion, while in reality believing in nothing but themselves as “intellectually, morally, and spiritually superior” persons (little g gods) and covertly voting for Clinton and the Democratic Party – proselytization for monetary gain. Neither of the above, however, is genuine Catholicism; just garden-variety perversions of the Faith, which need to be explicated in order for the unaware or the insufficiently aware to have the choice of not falling headlong into their traps.

Opposite Sides of the Same Coin

The former camp loves to speak a lot about God and the Catholic Church, giving the impression of great piety and leadership in particular on social media, yet at heart and in fact dismisses as irrelevant core tenets of Catholic teaching. The latter camp also speaks a lot about God and the Church, giving the impression of great knowledge and scholarship, yet in the same way brackets as inadequately relevant other core tenets of the Catholic Faith. Neither camp presents the fullness and the comprehensiveness of the Faith in both justice and fairness to the Truth Who is Christ, the Truth they so profess to love, because neither of them finds the fullness of the Truth digestible or adequately suitable for their underlying respective agendas.

Where, therefore, is God and where is the Holy Spirit in all of the above? Can either camp truly lead people to Christ and to the Father if they insist on presenting just a partial truth, which is no truth at all?

One thing is clear. Both camps have attempted and keep on attempting to refashion both the Catholic Faith and the Catholic Church into their image, consequently trying to remake God Himself into their image and likeness and presenting that to the people (the literal inversion of the father of lies), instead of attempting to discover, with a modicum of humility, what God wants, which is to make them into His own image and likeness.

A warning

To all those Catholics in North America (and possibly elsewhere) who claim that the Catholic Church is being “destroyed” by the hierarchy and the presbyterate, and that the latter two should not be supported under the rationalization of ‘enablement’:

  1. If you “do not have to attend” Mass on holy days of obligation in protest, because of the personal sins of various priests, bishops and cardinals, not to mention the Pope himself, you will be committing a mortal sin and severing your relationship with God. “We can keep the faith without them” will not cut it in front of God. Do you go to Mass for the hierarchy or for God? Or just to be seen by your peers? Or to boast that “I’m a good Catholic?”
  2. If you “need a Pope” so that you can start attending Mass in your dining room, rather than in church, when the universal Church already has its canonically-elected and validly-reigning Pope, the Vicar of Christ, Pope Francis, know that you are well on the way out of communion with God;
  3. If you think baptism of desire is going to wipe out your mortal sin of not attending Mass (vide #1), understand the following: baptism of desire, to be valid, is available only to those who have never been formally baptised. If you have already been baptised with the Trinitarian formula (whether Catholic, Christian, Orthodox), baptism of desire is no longer available to you as an option. Any sins, in particular mortal sins, committed after baptism require confession for remission, not another baptism. The only other option is the grace of perfect contrition.

For all those North American armchair-theologian Catholics who think that by publicly writing and speaking in the way you are about the Catholic Faith and the hierarchy, you are being “good Catholics,” pleasing to God and “preventing others from falling into error,” think again! If you think God enjoys your pejorative labeling and name-calling of even his most fallen priests, about whom you have had no compunction turning them into your everyday online and offline sport, think yet again!

God never looks kindly on people who attempt, in one way or another, to persuade others to remain distant from Him and to disobey His laws as handed down through the Church. Jesus Christ gave the keys of the kingdom of Heaven to Peter, not to you. Further, God is a God of Mercy, not solely Justice. This particularly applies:

Judge not, that you may not be judged. For with what judgment you judge, you shall be judged: and with what measure you mete, it shall be measured to you again. And why do you see the mote that is in your brother’s eye; and do not see the beam that is in your own eye? Or how do you say to your brother: “Let me cast the mote out of your eye; and behold a beam is in your own eye?” You hypocrite! Cast out first the beam in your own eye and then you shall see to cast out the mote out of your brother’s eye (Mt 7:1-5).

Know this, therefore:

The culpability for the potential (and actual) loss of those souls who wish to return to God, but are put off from doing so by your infamous rhetoric to score cheap political points and support your prideful egos, will be on none other but your souls. You will also face judgment from Christ when you die in the exact same way that you had no problem – indeed, relished – doling it out to others while still alive. Unless there is contrition.

You have been warned.

More on discerning the true Church from the false church

Ego sum cum Papa semper (Saint George Preca).

Some points:

  1. Those who speak against the Pope – run away from them. It is the Pope who has been appointed by the Son of the Living God, and God Himself, to be His Vicar and the visible head of the Church on earth. Not you or anyone else. See previous post;
  2. Those who would speak against their bishops, especially publicly, in terms of the Faith and its practice – a failure of basic charity, to begin with. The Church is a hierarchy and is run by a hierarchy. It is not a democracy or ‘run by committee’ or even by popular vote. There is a reason for that. The bishops are shepherds, leaders – your leaders – no matter their personal failings and foibles. They are your spiritual fathers; respect them as fathers. Dislike them and/or their various preferences all you want, but you do not have the right to disrespect them (let alone mock them) by virtue of their role/office that is permitted, if not appointed, by God. In mocking them, you are doing nothing less than mocking Christ and perpetuating His Passion;
  3. Those who create, or attempt to create, division, chaos and disorder in the Mystical Body of Christ. This is never from the Holy Spirit, even if done in the name of allegedly defending the Catholic Faith. The Mystical Body is not made up solely of Catholics – has never, in fact, been comprised solely of Catholics, as though it’s one’s favorite political party. The Mystical Body of Jesus Christ is made up of every single individual who has been validly baptized (in terms of form and matter) and of every person who has been baptized by desire (cf. Lumen Gentium). It is not you or your likings that determine who is part of the Church, but God. Those who would claim otherwise are going directly against the Constitution on the Church and against the desires of the very God they so profess to worship above all else;
  4. Those who claim that the Extraordinary (Tridentine) Form of the Mass is “superior” to the Ordinary Form (Novus Ordo). Both forms are equal in terms of sacramental grace, validity and liceity, despite the differences in perceived reverence and personal preferences. You do not get “more Jesus” in the former than in the latter. To say otherwise is a lie;
  5. Those who would claim that they are The Remnant Faithful in the Church. No one but God knows the entirety of who is, or is not, part of the remnant. To claim otherwise is to attempt to arrogate for oneself – like Lucifer – the very role, seat and omnipotence of God.

The mind of the Catholic Church on capital punishment – From Blessed Paul VI through Pope Francis

YOU SHALL NOT KILL

Pope Blessed Paul VI

“Go out into the world and make every effort possible in every way to restore the dignity of man, and all that it implies! I stand foursquare with modern theologians who hold that prudentially and historically capital punishment does not fit into the greater contemporary theological awareness of the worth of each individual on earth” (Speech to the Bishops at closing of Vatican Council II, Vatican City, 1965).

Note: Paul VI removed capital punishment from the fundamental law of Vatican City in 1969.


Pope Saint John Paul II

“On this matter there is a growing tendency, both in the Church and in civil society, to demand that it be applied in a very limited way or even that it be abolished completely. The problem must be viewed in the context of a system of penal justice ever more in line with human dignity and thus, in the end, with God’s plan for man and society. The primary purpose of the punishment which society inflicts is “to redress the disorder caused by the offence”.46 Public authority must redress the violation of personal and social rights by imposing on the offender an adequate punishment for the crime, as a condition for the offender to regain the exercise of his or her freedom. In this way authority also fulfils the purpose of defending public order and ensuring people’s safety, while at the same time offering the offender an incentive and help to change his or her behaviour and be rehabilitated.  (more…)