Critics have complained that Pope Pius XII did nothing to help victims of Nazi atrocities; critics have complained that Pope John Paul II did nothing to help victims of clergy abuse. The irony is that the Vatican shows more sensitivity to Jewish concerns than it does to the victims of its own clergy.
Know anyone who always has to have the last word? I know of a bishop who always had to have the last word in his written correspondence. So one of his priests decided to test his endurance. He sent the bishop a thank you letter, to which the bishop responded with an acknowledgment, to which the priest responded with another thank you, to which the bishop responded again with another acknowledgment, etc, etc, etc. In the end, after much time and postage, the bishop prevailed.
So too, Father Celatus insists on having the last word about his “Last Word.” I concluded my recent article regarding the impending canonization of Pope John Paul II with these words:
As the Church Militant continues to lower the standard for heavenly evidence that souls are within the Church Triumphant, one wonders whether canonization is now more a matter of what man himself declares and less a discernment of what God determines. Jesus promised that what is bound on Earth is bound in Heaven but in these canonizations, might not the Church be forcing the hand of God?
The Fast-tracked Canonization: A Lamentable Lack of PrudenceBy: Father Celatus
In his L’Année Liturgique – The Liturgical Year – the great Dom Guéranger, 19th century abbot of Solesmes, notes that Holy Thursday’s praying of the fifth psalm conveys a “moral teaching, which, if listened to, would correct many a false judgment of the world. It often happens that men are shaken at seeing the wicked prosperous, and the virtuous afflicted. It was the temptation which overcame the apostles, when, seeing their divine Master in the hands of His enemies, they lost their faith in Him as the Messias.”
In other words, even after having witnessed the miracles of Our Lord and professing to recognize Him as the Messiah the Apostles nevertheless “lost faith in Jesus” after He had fallen into the hands of His enemies.
Does this mean that in our own day as we witness the Mystical Body of Christ undergo a similar passion, we too can expect to be scandalized to that extent? Might we in our fear and weakness also come to deny the Church and even flee from her when she falls into the hands of the Christophobes?
Mary’s Little Remnant: On the Resurrection of the Mystical Body of ChristBy: Michael J. Matt | Editor
In answer to the question: “Whether it was necessary for Christ to rise again?” (Q.53, art. 1), St. Thomas Aquinas writes as follows:
(It behooved Christ to rise again, for five reasons: First of all, for the commendation of Divine Justice, to which it belongs to exalt those who humble themselves for God’s sake, according to Luke 1,52: “He hath put down the mighty from their seat, and hath exalted the humble.” Consequently, because Christ humbled Himself even unto the death of the Cross, from love and obedience to God, it behooved Him to be lifted up by God unto a glorious Resurrection; hence, it is said in His Person (Psalm 138.2): “Thou hast known (i.e., approved) My sitting down (i.e., My humiliation and Passion) and my rising up (i.e., My glorification in the Resurrection)…”
Secondly, for our instruction in the Faith, since our belief in Christ’s Divinity is confirmed by His rising again, because, according to 2 Cor. 13,14, “although He was crucified through weakness, yet He liveth by the Power of God”. And it is therefore written (1 Cor. 15,14): “If Christ be not risen again, then is our preaching vain, and our faith is also vain;” and Psalm 29.10: “What profit is there in My Blood (that is, in the shedding of My Blood), while I go down (as by various degrees of evils) into corruption?” As though He were to answer: “None.” “For if I do not at once rise again, but My body be corrupted, I shall preach to no one, I shall gain no one,” as the Gloss expounds.
St. Thomas Aquinas on the ResurrectionBy: St. Thomas Aquinas
History and Scripture show that ever since Adam and Eve men tend to want a God cut down to their own size: a God fashioned in their own likeness. What they don’t want is a God of infinite perfection who asks them to rise above themselves, above concupiscence and self-love, and strive to be perfect, even as their heavenly Father is perfect.
Men who have a strong tendency to be this way are likely to have difficulty also with the mystery of the Incarnation. Their hearts find it intolerable that an Infinite God should so love the world as to give His only-begotten Son to die in torments for love of us. You understand that what makes this intolerable is the implied obligation of making a like return of love; of putting off the “old Adam” and conforming oneself to Christ the new Adam.
Good Friday Meditation: Jesus, Priest of His Own Victimhood and Victim of His Own PriesthoodBy: Fr. Urban Snyder
In the Garden of Gethsemane, our Lord experienced a suffering so great, that three times He petitioned His Father to let it pass from Him. So intense was the distress and agony caused by this trial, that, for a time, our Lord’s human will was in conflict with His Divine Will. This cross was so great, and the pain and sorrow so intense, that it caused Him to sweat blood, yet the petition He made to His Father was not granted.
What was this chalice that our Lord was experiencing? Was it the foreknowledge of the suffering and death He was about to undergo for the Redemption of man? Is this the chalice He asked His Father to take away? If so, it would indicate that our Lord’s natural fear of suffering was, at least momentarily, greater than His supernatural love for those for whom He came to redeem.
Father, Let This Chalice Pass from MeBy: Robert J. Siscoe
THE doctrine of Christ is that we die to the world and join with Him on the cross. This teaching is beautifully expressed by St. Paul where he says, "I am nailed to the cross with Christ." (Galatians 2:19) To endure the suffering of the cross is necessary for salvation as taught by the Savior Himself: "Whosoever does not carry his cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple." (Matthew 14:27)
Christ came to deliver us from the world and to call us home to His everlasting Kingdom, but this will be done strictly through the cross. He went before us to open the way but unless we follow Him, His sacrifice avails us nothing. The way to Heaven is to strip oneself of worldly interest and to press after Christ with our cross as taught by the evangelist: "I suffer the loss of all things, and count them as dung, that I may gain Christ." (Phil. 3:8)
The Hour Has Come: A Second Holy ThursdayBy: Our Lady's Workers of Southern California
Remnant Editor’s Note: In February of 1973, the late, great French thinker, Jean Ousset—author of Action, the definitive guide to Catholic action—wrote a letter to a Catholic who having witnessed the auto-demolition of the Church in France, had lost his Faith. Originally written in French, Ousset’s letter was translated into English for The Remnant by Michael Davies, who noted at the time that Ousset “depicts the current dark disorder as a call to action rather than a cause for despair.”
The Neo-Catholics are again raging against the Traditionalists, desperately insisting that we are leading the sheep in the direction of the cliffs of despair by accurately assessing and realistically addressing the unprecedented crisis in the Church. Not so, said Michael Davies. Not so, said Louis Veuillot. Not so, said Jean Ousset.
In fact, these great Catholic activists beleived that, far from justifying despair, the darkness we see all around us is a subject for meditation, really—for action!—for as bad as things have become in Europe, the Americas and all across the world, we can see through Hell’s very refusal to give up the fight against the Cross that the triumph of Christ the King is inevitable.
Confronting Crisis in the Church by Standing Firm at the Foot of the CrossBy: Jean Ousset
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: Neo-Catholicism and neo-Catholic are shorthand terms for a new form of "conservative Catholicism" or "neo-conservative Catholicism" that emerged in the Catholic Church during and after the Second Vatican Council. Use of the terms was first popularized in the book The Great Façade; Vatican II and the Regime of Novelty in the Roman Catholic Church (2002), a study of unprecedented changes in the Catholic Church since Vatican II. The essential element of this current in the Church is its progressivism relative to Catholicism as it existed before Vatican II.
“Neo-Catholicism”: A Comprehensive Definition on WikipediaBy: Wikipedia Entry
In 2007 URI celebrated its 10th anniversary in the Metropolitan Cathedral in Buenos Aires, Argentina. On the far-right is Jorge Mario Bergoglio
Question: What explains the love affair going on between the Vicar of Christ on earth and the modern executioners of his Mystical Body in the media? The Rolling Stone magazine cover, Time magazine’s ‘Person of the Year”, the Advocate’s glowing praise, and now CNN Money (Fortune) is listing the Holy Father as the “Greatest Leader” in the world today—edging out frontrunners Angela Merkel, Warren Buffet and Bill Clinton.
Meanwhile Pope Benedict XVI and even Pope John Paul II are vilified by the same media as intransigent traditionalists, personally responsible for the spread of AIDS and the sexual abuse of children by priests all over the world. In dramatic fashion, for example, PBS Frontline recently took it upon itself to highlight this contrast between Francis and his “evil predecessors” in the deeply disturbing documentary Secrets of the Vatican (viewer discretion strongly advised).
Pope Francis and the United Religions InitiativeBy: Michael J. Matt | Editor
Joan of Arc cut her hair short and wore men’s clothes. She particularly fancied beautiful armor and fine horses, which she rode astride, and was admired for her prowess with the lance. She led troops into battle, remaining in armor for six days running if necessary, and never faltered in her objective even after the enemy captured her. They tried her and executed her, not for war crimes, but for being a witch.
We might expect to see her commemorated on a postage stamp or a silver dollar along with other intrepid females who fought for women’s rights or otherwise beat men at their own game. But feminists seem wary of Joan, as if they didn’t quite trust her. Anyway, they don’t often mention her, at least in public, and they certainly don’t carry her banner in demonstrations. That shows a degree of political acumen on their part, for were they to call attention to her it would soon become painfully clear that she didn’t care a fig for equal rights, for either man or woman.
Joan of Arc: Scourge of Modern FeministsBy: Solange Hertz
■ As one advocate for victims stated, “In his more than 25 years as the world’s most powerful religious figure, we can’t think of a single predatory priest or complicit bishop who experienced any consequences whatsoever for committing or concealing heinous child sex crimes.
Did you hear what one English writer, Jerome K. Jerome, said to the other English writer, Ford M. Ford?
“There’s something, old boy, which I’ve always abhorred: When people address me and call me, ‘Jerome’, Are they being standoffish, or too much at home?” Said Ford, “I agree; it’s the same thing with me.” There is something about reduplicated names that is not only repetitive but just a bit odd. I have an inherent distrust of those so named.