“Our once great western Christian civilization is dying. If this matters to followers of Jesus Christ, then we must set aside our denominational differences and work together to strengthen the things that remain and reclaim what has been lost. Evangelicals and Catholics must stand together to re-establish that former Christian culture and moral consensus. We have the numbers and the organization but the question is this: Do we have the will to win this present spiritual battle for Jesus Christ against secularism? Will we prayerfully and cooperatively work toward a new Christian spiritual revival ― or will we choose to hunker down in our churches and denominationalisms and watch everything sink into the spiritual and moral abyss of a New Dark Age?” - Mark Davis Pickup

Thursday, September 17, 2020

ALL CHRISTIANS ARE INDISPENSABLE TO THE BODY OF CHRIST

 

My devotion last night was 1 Corinthians 12.12-27. 

Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one bodywhether Jews or Gentiles, slave or freeand we were all given the one Spirit to drink. Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.

Now if the foot should say, Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body, it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. And if the ear should say, Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body, it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact, God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body.

The eye cannot say to the hand, I dont need you! And the head cannot say to the feet, I dont need you! On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.

Every believer has an indispensable role to play in God’s plan. You may not think so, but you do. Everyone has something, a role, a ministry, a talent, to offer in building the Church and spreading the Gospel. It may not be a front-line ministry, or in leadership but God has something He wants you to do. Perhaps your ministry does not win the applause of singers or musicians on stage each Sunday. Your contribution to the Kingdom of God might not receive resounding “Hallelujahs” of the congregation approval at the profundity of a speaker’s words. Your contribution may in fact be behind the scenes and out of the public eye. Perhaps a believer is a janitor and thinks he’s never even noticed.  But his supportive contribution is crucial to the operation of the church. 

I am reminded of the mayor of a major city who was being interviewed for a news story. The reporter referred to him as having the most important job in the city. The mayor stopped the reporter and said something to this effect: “Do you know who’s really important to the operations of this city? Garbage collectors. If I don’t come to work for a month it will scarcely be noticed. But if the garbage collectors don’t go to work, it will be noticed by everybody within a week.” Wow. He put things into perspective. 

Saint Andre Bessette (1845-1937) was a lay brother of Holy Cross in Montreal. He was plagued with poor health throughout his life. All he ever became was a porter at College Notre Dame in Côte des Neiges, Quebec. His lofty superiors did not see the holiness of the little brother in their midst. He was barely five feet tall, yet he was a spiritual giant. Despite being a porter for 40 years, his powerful prayers healed thousands of sick people. Word of his spiritual gift of healing became well known and crowds came to his door. Jealous superiors at in the Congregation of Holy Cross were sceptical and local doctors called him a “quack.” In the end, the humble little brother was receiving 80,000 letters a year and needed four secretaries to handle them. God puts us right where He wants us to serve the Kingdom of God.

It does not matter that your contribution to your church may seem inconsequential to you. It is not to God. It does not matter if others notice your offerings to God. He notices.

 

Don’t wish you were more talented or gifted in different areas than where you have been given a calling. That’s like a frog wishing he wasn’t green. God made you just as you are, and He has a purpose In His design for you. 

  

 



Tuesday, September 1, 2020

A GRANDFATHER'S LOVE IS FOREVER AND EVER



 One day, when my grandson was four years old, we were exploring the nooks and crannies, the playgrounds and trails, in our little town. Some dark clouds appeared so he climbed on my lap and we hurried home on my wheelchair just as it started to rain. He and I watched the Disney movie "Pooh's Grand Adventure." My little guy sat in a big comfy chair eating popcorn. He did not know his family was going to move away from Grandma and Papa’s little town. My heart was heavy. The song 'Forever and Ever' began to play and I got a lump in my throat. It made me sadder. I did not want him to move away but it had to be. The day he moved away was the same day my mother (his great-grandmother) died. I don’t think the world ever felt so lonesome as it did that day. I wanted to always call his name and hear his voice answer. It was not to be.

Now he has grown to be a man. But no matter where he goes in the world, he knows his Grandmother and I are still in our little house. A candle is always burning in the window for him and his younger siblings.


I am old now. Everything is simple again. Rhythms of life are becoming gentle, seasons pass and a nearby church bell still rings each day, just as it has for over a hundred years. Each night when I get into my bed and turn off the lamp, I still dream he, and my other grandchildren will come back to stay. Love for my family is forever and ever.




Friday, August 28, 2020

HOW DID AMERICA GET IN THIS STORM & WHAT TO DO ABOUT IT?

 “He was in the hospital from the middle of Lent til after Easter. When he was better, he remembered the dreams he had had while he was feverish and delirious. He dreamt the whole world was condemned to a terrible strange new plague that had come to Europe from the depths of Asia. All were to be destroyed except a very few chosen. Soe new microbes were attacking the bodies of men, but these microbes were endowed with intelligence and will. Men attacked by them became mad and furious. … Whole villages, whole towns went mad with the infection. All were excited and did not understand one another. Each thought he alone had the truth and was wretched looking at others, beat himself on the breast, wept and wrung his hands. They did not know how to judge and did not agree what to consider evil and what good; they did not know whom to blame, whom to justify. Men killed each other with a sort of senseless pite.”—Fydor Dostoevky, CRIME AND PUNISHMENT.[1]

__________________________ 


A storm has been gathering on the horizon of America for quite some time. I’ve watched it slowly approaching. Dark clouds of rage and destruction have finally arrived. The threat it poses is more real and dangerous than any external enemy with bayonets storming the shores or intercontinental missiles pointed at America. The threat to American society is from within. This pernicious and malicious home-grown enemy is attacking the foundations of the nation from within, like a cancer. Young malcontents of anarchy— goaded by well-planned Marxists— vow to bring down the United States of America and replace freedom with a tyranny of the left. They are traitors! They are guilty of nothing less that treason, and they should receive a traitor’s punishment. 

 

Do not downplay or ignore the internal danger facing the United States of America. 

 

James Madison (1751-1836) was America’s fourth President and is often called the Father of the Constitution. He said, “If our nation is ever taken over, it will be taken over from within.” His prophetic words speak across two hundred years to twenty-first century Americans. They are watching their cities burn, violence and bloodshed in streets, law and order collapse. Ugly images of streets littered with the shells of burnt out cars, smashed windows of looted gutted stores and businesses are becoming common, America’s flag burning and trampled underfoot.

 

This should prompt every American patriot into action to take back their country. Marxists and their dullard thugs-of-anarchy make their hundreds seem like thousands. They are wielding power far beyond their numbers, thanks to support and sympathies of Democratic politicians at federal, state and municipal levels. Patriotic citizens are frightened, and they should be. People of goodness feel impotent to stop the carnage, the threats to their safety, property and nation. 

 

Simply put, civilized society is disintegrating before your very eyes! But you must not let this happen! You must act from now until November 3rd to keep the Democrats under Joe Biden and Kamala Harris from taking the Presidency, the House of Representatives and the Senate. It does not matter whether you have always voted for the Democrats, these Democrats are not the Democrats of John Kennedy. They are an aberration. You must not support them. 

 

It so frustrating to helplessly watch what occurring to my neighbours to the south. I am a foreigner, a nobody, witnessing the unravelling of a nation that I’m not a part of but have come to know and love. Since childhood, I’ve looked admiringly from the distant western Canadian hinterland to a glimmer of the great “shining city on a hill” lighting up sky for all to see.[2]  It is the light of freedom, optimism, and trust in God (as your coins so beautifully proclaim). The City has shimmered with patriotic loyalty, family values and interdependent communities. One nation under God made up of independent individuals within an interdependent whole: A people who historically looked to God for guidance. And for 244 years, God blessed America. 

 

Founded on a Judeo-Christian moral ethos, it has been a sacred nation set between two oceans, a beacon to the world for human potential and freedom. But now that shining light appears to be dimming, its flame no longer dancing—it is flickering unsteadily in winds of discontent. What happened? Will the light of liberty be extinguished in the months and years after November? I think I know what happened. 

 

After the Second World War people began to slowly turn away from God. They began to put their trust in themselves and things, treasures of earth rather than that which is treasured in heaven. It didn’t happen suddenly. It happened in small increments. Little bit by little bit, one small shift after another, the great nation under God began to lose its way. Gradually the dividends of a Judeo-Christian moral and spiritual consensus faded. Where were Christians? They made a fatal mistake of seeing things in bits and pieces rather than part of a whole. Yes, Christians were concerned about the breakdown of the family, rising rates of divorce, pushing God out of schools, increasing moral permissiveness and pornography, abortion and more recently, legalized euthanasia. Each shift took people further away from a Judeo-Christian moral mindset that viewed humanity as intrinsically valuable because every human being was endowed with the indelible image of God. As such, they possessed a natural dignity and sacredness. Things or actions or behavior that did not square with those virtues were discouraged or prohibited. Not everyone was Christian but at least they vaguely ascribed to that national ethos because it was embraced goodness and reflected an objective truth about human dignity and sanctity. A belief in the sanctity of essential things like human life and marriage and family were generally accepted by all but a few kooks and provocateur philosophers trying to gain notoriety.  That is no longer the case. We have three generations inculcated with the false idea there is no such thing as absolute truth, only personal relative truth, thanks, in large part, the twentieth century educational reformer to John Dewey.[3]

 

In Nancey R. Pearcey’s pivitol book TOTAL TRUTH: Liberating Christianity from Its Cultural Roots (Crossway Books), she spoke about John Dewey’s disastrous effect on education: 

 

“John Dewey did more to shape educational methodology than anyone else in the twentieth century.Dewey is the source of much of today’s moral education, where all values are treated as equally valid and students clarify what they value most. … Any value that students choose is deemed acceptable, whether or not it comports with accepted moral standards, as long as they have gone through the prescribed series of steps. Why? Because, as one textbook puts it, “None of us can be certain that our values are right for other people.” Each individual has become an autonomous decision maker, determining his values strictly on his own.”

 

What we are witnessing in the streets, BLM, antifa (blessed by the Democratic Party) is relativistic morality gone amuck! Today’s young hooligans tearing up America is the reductio ad absurdum of having trampling Judeo-Christian morality underfoot three generations ago. There is no transcendent universal truth. The only absolute truth is there is no absolute truth. Might makes right. What’s right is whatever is deemed to be right by whatever is fashionably in season at any given time. Right now, the mantra is America bad, communism good. Everybody is being encouraged to “reimagine” America with no police. Imagine the world with no American way, established ideals, capitalism, no private property. In short, “reimagine America as a Marxist state”—the first step of which will be the election of the left’s useful idiot Joe Biden.  

 

We must not overlook that seventy-five years ago, almost everyone knew the what the Ten Commandments were. They may not have been Christian, but they knew what they were. Granted, people did not always behave accordingly but they knew in their hearts-of-hearts it was the basis for proper moral behaviour. Most people desired and tried—however uncertain and haltingly—to live by that ancient moral code. They understood there is something called truth and that it simply and existed. Their hearts and their consciences verified it.[4]

 

The Judeo-Christian moral ethos was brought from Northern European Christian culture. The Common Law of western civilization (so despised by the radical left) raised human rights, education, law, culture and mores to heights previously unknown in human history. Anglo-American Common law has Christianity at its foundations. In 1829, in his inaugural address as Dane professor of law of Harvard University, Joseph Story[5] said, “There has never been a period in which Common Law did not recognize Christianity as laying at its foundation.”[6] Until the post-world war generations leading up to today, Western Civilization was viewed as worth defending to the point of death. And it was defended. Hundreds of thousands of most men did just that.[7]

On the Eve of the Battle of Britain, Winston Churchill rose in Parliament and stated, 

 

“I expect that the Battle of Britain is about to begin. Upon this battle depends the survival of Christian civilization. Upon it depends our own British life, and the continuity of our institutions and our Empire. The whole fury of the enemy must very soon be turned on us.” He went on urge the British people that they must defeat Hitler. If they succeeded, all Europe would be free. Then the great man warned: “But if we fail, the whole world, including the United States, including all that we have known and cared for, will sink into the abyss of a New Dark Age, … .”[8]

 

I believe there are similarities between that fateful time and what America faces now. What America decides on November 3rd will decide whether it is still “one nation under God.” If Donald Trump is returned as President of the United States, the storm will pass. America’s great institutions and Empire will be preserved, strengthened and free. But if Joe Biden is elected, a terrible disfigurement will begin. The greatest nation on earth will be twisted into a socialist stated based upon Marxism. Strangely, just as Founding Father James Madison stated, America will be taken over from within by leftists, Marxists, and anarchists to form an unholy alliance with the Democratic Party. 

 

It’s coming into focus: The undoing of the United States of America will not be by some external enemy storming America’s shores with guns and bayonets, or missiles pointed at the heart of the nation. This enemy is within by its own citizens! This battle will be waged on November 3rd and the weapons will be ballots of voters.

 

Between now and then, it is necessary that ordinary citizens become involved in Donald Trump’s re-election campaign en masse. They must not listen to the liberal media’s messaging that continually spins anti-Trump narratives based on Democratic bias or ideological perspectives of the left and little or no actual evidence to support their inflammatory words. They must adamantly and forcefully demand the carnage on streets of cities stop now or throw their politicians from office. if the cowering authorities will not allow the police to do their jobs to maintain or return law and order get rid of them. They must not allow Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats to tell falsehoods about the President and his administration. Demand truth. Rioters are not demonstators. Donald Trump did not cause the coronavirus, he has responded appropriately as our understanding of COVID19 has evolved. Demand law and order. Demand an honest election without manipulation. Demand a fair and neutral press. But most of all, do not vote for Joe Biden or Democratic politicians in the Senate or House of Representatives. This election is perhaps more important than another in half a century. Become the America God wants you to be! And encourage young patriots to give their contributions and talents to the Union.




 

 



[1] Fyodor Dostoevsky, CRIME AND PUNISHMENT (New York: Random House, 1956) pp. 489-490. 

[2] Ronald Reagan often called America a shining city on a hill.

[3] … Dewey is the source of much of today’s moral education, where all values are treated as equally valid and students clarify what they value most. … Any value that students choose is deemed acceptable, whether or not it comports with accepted moral standards, as long as they have gone through the prescribed series of steps. Why? Because, as one textbook puts it, “None of us can be certain that our values are right for other people.” Each individual has become an autonomous decision maker, determining his values strictly on his own.”

 

[4] Psalm 40.8, Jeremiah 31.33, Ezekiel 11.19-20, 36.26, Hebrews 8.10.

[5] Joseph Story (1779-1845) American lawyer and jurist who served on the U.S. Supreme Court from 1812-1845.

[6] Quoted in Perry Miller, editor, The Legal Mind in America (New York: Doubleday, 1962), p. 178.

[7] According to the National WW2 War Museum in New Orleans: In the Second World War, Allied Soldiers who died by country: U.S.- 416,800, British- 386,600, Canada- 45,000, Australia- 39,800. These numbers for only World War. See https://www.nationalww2museum.org/war/institute-study-war-and-democracy

 

[8] Winston S. Churchill, MEMOIRS OF THE SECOND WORLD WAR: An Abridgement of the six volumes of The Second World War (Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1987) p. 326.

Sunday, August 23, 2020

I LET THE HUMBLE SWEET PEA SPEAK




August is a gift. My wife's sweet peas (and other flowers) in our backyard are in full bloom. LaRee knows they are my favourite flower (they are her's too.) She picks them and puts them in vases and jars throughout our house. Their beautiful pastel colours and sweet scent fill the rooms just as they do to the warm fresh air in the yard.

The humble sweet pea has much to teach me about life (if I allow them to speak to me). God can, if I let Him, use a flower to teach me about His nature through nature. He is, after all, the Creator of it all. Case in point: A bouquet of simple sweet peas shows me that simple beauty is the best beauty. That is a truth about most of life. Simple love is the best love.  Sadly, people rush about their busy lives oblivious to God's wisdom to be found in a lowly sweet pea or countless wild flowers growing along roads and walking trails. People quickly drive or walk by them without a thought about the wisdom and beauty to be found in a flower's simpleness. (The same is true of quietude.) 

Twenty-first century people do not tend to value simpleness. They pervert simple beauty into gaudy, vulgar counterfeits of beauty. They take simple pure love and twist it into something ugly by unfaithfulness, betrayal, lust and all sorts of deviations from pure simple love. They change pure love into something unworthy of the word pure or love—and a thousand miles from the Creator of love.

And yet, when all the deviations and complications of life are stripped away — as coronavirus may yet do to you and me — it becomes clear that it was only simple beauty and simple love that mattered all along! 

Isn't that part of the charm of babies? Their simple innocent beauty and openness to love calls you and me to remember our own early beautiful innocence and openness to love that was source of our joy. Joy is so natural to babies and tiny children but later is driven away when their hearts become broken, jaded, or cynical. Hearts hardened by betrayal, jealousy, selfishness or disappointment with life can only remember and experience faint momentary inklings of real Joy. Otherworldly Joy of God is a distant memory of earliest childhood.

That's why I think that sweet peas and tiny babies still call you and me back to the purity of simple beauty and simple love. That is where authentic Joy is to be found, It can be a constant state of being for hearts at peace with God though His Son Jesus Christ. 

Let the COVID lockdown be a time to quiet your heart and search for God. He is near and He cares for you and me.

"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life or what you will eat, or about your your body and what you will wear. For your life is more than food and the body more than clothing. ... Notice how the flowers grow. They do not toil or spin. But I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendour was dressed like one of them. If God clothes the grass that grows today and is thrown into the oven tomorrow, will he not provide much more for you, O you of little faith." —Jesus Christ, (Luke 12.22-23, 27-28.)

MDP

Monday, August 3, 2020

AMERICA AT THE ABYSS

The following video was sent to me by Facebook.  It speaks to America about the horribly high stakes of the November election. It calls the nation to a national day prayer 40 days before election day. I urge you to watch it. What is at state this election is nothing less that the heart and soul of America. 

You know which party stands against biblical values and against a Christian world view. Christianity lies at the foundations of America. Please see the video here: "The Return." (There are forces at work to silence any call to repentance, including blocking this video. You may find that it's censored and unavailable when you try the link.) 

It is a critically important message to the nation for a spiritual and moral about-face, in what people of previous times called revival. And it is something that has weighed heavy on my heart. Thirteen years ago I wrote these words for the cover for this blog:

“Our once great western Christian civilization is dying. If this matters to followers of Jesus Christ, then we must set aside our denominational differences and work together to strengthen the things that remain and reclaim what has been lost. Evangelicals and Catholics must stand together to re-establish that former Christian culture and moral consensus. We have the numbers and the organization but the question is this: Do we have the will to win this present spiritual battle for Jesus Christ against secularism? Will we prayerfully and cooperatively work toward a new Christian spiritual revival ― or will we choose to hunker down in our churches and denominationalisms and watch everything sink into the spiritual and moral abyss of a New Dark Age?” 

America now stands at the edge of that abyss of that New Dark Age; Joe Biden and the Democrats will certainly bring it to America. But there is another choice involving the probability of new sunlit uplands for America's future only President Trump and the Republicans will bring—only they have not yet abandoned God or a Christian world view.

On November 3rd, the citizens of America will decide which future it shall be. God's people must call their neighbours and other fellow-citizens to embrace God and His way through knowing the reality of Jesus Christ at a personal level. 

Look at a coin. What does it say? "In God We Trust." In your hand lies the answer to America's future prosperity and happiness.

MDP


Tuesday, July 28, 2020

NOTHING CAN SEPARATE US FROM THE LOVE OF GOD

Being one of the vulnerable populations at particular risk of COVID19 (multiple sclerosis & hypertension) I haven't attended church in months! I've been sequestered in my little house, watching weekly Catholic Masses on Youtube. The readings for 26 July 2020 were 1Kings 3:5-10, Romans 8:28-30 and the Gospel reading was Matthew 13:44-52.  In the homily, Father Michael Coutts, S.J., of Toronto, said that "all glory and riches and everything we have is transitory, it's fleeting, it's not going to last forever." Indeed, we know that, and yet so many people behave as though riches and glory will last. They place too much value and emphasis on them.

The first reading tells us that God appeared in a dream to the young King Solomon at the beginning of his reign after the death of his father King David. God asked him what he wanted. Solomon said:

"Now, Lord my God, you have made your servant king in place of my father David. But I am only a little child and do not know how to carry out my duties. Your servant is here among the people you have chosen, a great people, too numerous to count or number. So give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong."

God was pleased King Solomon did not request a long life or riches or revenge on enemies, rather he asked for wisdom. Not only did God make Solomon the wisest and most discerning man in history, He gave Solomon what he did not ask for: wealth and honour.  And then God said: "And if you walk in obedience to me and keep my decrees and commands as David your father did, I will give you a long life.” That brings me to a point about people who govern now.

Beware of politicians who govern solely based upon their own understanding. Someone seeking public office, must understand that their own understanding is insufficient, limited and weak. Figuratively speaking, they must govern on their knees and seek God's leading to make the right decisions. Many secular and unbelieving politicians may assume a pious air when it suits them to gain support of religious voters. But their lives or voting records belie the facade. They are unworthy leaders who will not be led. They call good evil and evil good, such as the Democrats' persistent and consistent support for abortion and the expansion of it. Leaders without moral rectitude. They sway with prevailing winds of fashionable, avant-garde thinking. They want to appear progressive regardless of how regressive the fashionable thinking may actually be.  They adhere to political correctness more than actual correctness in matters of morality, policy or law. We need lawmakers and politicians who pray for, ... well, to use an old saying, the wisdom of Solomon. 

The second reading in the Mass was Romans 8:28-30. It begins with these words: "And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose." I love this chapter of Romans. Earlier it says, "For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us."

I've been chronically ill for most of my adult life. So often I have clung to these verses. I needed to know there will be a glory of God that will dwarf any suffering I experience in this life, that all things, even my pain, will ultimately work for my good.

Father Cootts said we may have infirmities, but we have a great treasure, and that treasure is hope.  The hope Father Coutts referred to is not based on emotions and he said that.  The hope he spoke of is the hope that every Christian believer has experienced. This is true. I have personally witnessed that hope of God's daily care for me in my earthly pilgrimage toward His eternal love. This daily care is not merely a series of coincidences. They are not coincidences because God's care is evident each day. Coincidences happen by chance. They are rare. The Divine care to which I am beneficiary of is constant. Coincidences are not constant or they would not be coincidences.

Father Coutts noted that the truth of the Gospel reading is brought to us from the past and we should put it into practice in our present circumstances. Even with my disease ridden body, I experience the daily effects of God's care and the pledge of eternal life. It is a pledge to all who believe in Jesus Christ and the sacrifice He paid on the cross for our sins: Belief, repentance, confession and penance of my sins (which are many).

The Evil One accuses. God forgives. The Evil One tempts. God calls us to purity and holiness. Satan lures. God woos. Satan asks humanity to sin, then condemns us when we do. God wants to forgive our sins and bring us to Himself.  There is no sin God will not forgive.  Remember that King David was guilty of adultery and being an accessory to murder, and yet God forgave his repentant heart.

Sin may be initially feel light, fun, and taste sweet while we are committing it. But when our hearts convict us, that sin becomes bitter, and weighs heavily on a guilty conscience. It becomes a burden. 


Jesus calls to you and me: "Come to me, all you who labour and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will rest for your selves." Jesus gives release and rest from the burden and guilt of sin. At Calvary, He took on the weight of our sins. He gave his body and blood for you and me. He may have been betrayed by Judas, but I have betrayed him too, by my sins. Still He continues to give his body and blood in the bread and wine of the Blessed Sacrament, always calling me back to His rest and peace.

Father Coutts and priests all over the world consecrate the bread and wine at every Mass. They raise the bread and cup to become the Body and Blood of Christ.

"At the time Christ was betrayed and entered willingly into his Passion, He took bread and giving thanks, He broke it and gave to his disciples saying 'Take this all of you and eat of it for this is my body which will be given up for you.' In a similar way, when supper was ended, He took the chalice and once more giving thanks He gave it to his disciples saying 'Take this all of you and drink from it. For this is the chalice of my blood, the blood of the new and eternal Covenant which will be poured out for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins. Do this in memory of me.'"

Christ gave us the bread of life and the chalice of salvation.  We partake of them each time we receive his Body and Blood at Mass. But I cannot attend Mass! I'm in lockdown along with millions of other people. I can only look at the image on my computer screen and unite myself with Christ in spiritual communion: "As I cannot receive thee, my Jesus in Holy Communion, come spiritually into my heart and make it Thine forever."

To the unbeliever it is all foolishness. To those who know it to be true, it is the mystery of faith. It is through faith that my sins are forgiven. It is through hope that my crippled body draws nearer to Christ's body that was once broken and is now perfected. Mine will be too. It is through the salvation message of the Gospel—that comes from across the centuries—that we can rest in Christ's love, knowing we are forgiven. He takes away the burden of my sins, just as He can for you.

Nothing can separate us from the love of God!

"For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor present things, nor future things, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature will be able to separate us from the love God in Christ Jesus our Lord." — Saint Paul (Romans 8:38-39)

MDP 

Thursday, July 16, 2020

A TERRIBLE AND MALIGNANT FORCE AT WORK IN AMERICA

There is a terrible and malignant force at work in the nation. It is intent on tearing America apart then remaking it as a Marxist state. They may soften the terminology with the word ‘socialist’ but don’t be fooled. It’s Marxism under another name. This malevolent force is particularly dangerous because it is attacking America from within, like a cancer. The terrible and malignant force I refer is the radical left, supported by the Democratic Party and many Democratic politicians.

They are enemies of the freedoms, liberty and the way of life America enjoys. These freedoms and liberties are what your grandfathers, fathers—and in more recent times, your sons and daughters—fought to protect and perpetuate.  All that is being threatened. 

It is now time for very American patriot to take a steadfast and strong stand against the menacing mobs setting American cities ablaze and calling for the dismantling of police ... and a dismantling of America itself! 

America is a nation of law and order not lawlessness and anarchy, where communities are built not destroyed. 

You have a pledge of allegiance to your sacred Republic that your children were taught in grade school:

I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

That is not the way of the radical left and their mobs. They burn the U.S. flag and trample it under foot. They burn cities. They stoke fires of division amongst citizens and fan flames of violence. They deny liberty and replace it with unrestrained licence. They reject God who has blessed America so richly. They howl about injustice, all the while creating more. They want to destroy America—the greatest nation to ever exist in human history. The United States of America has created unparalleled human freedom, liberty and prosperity. What communist country can the radical left point to that is comparable. Russia? China? North Korea? Cuba?

Good people of America! NOW is the time you must rise up and protect your cities and communities and restore law and order. Get in the faces of your politicians and demand (in no uncertain terms) that they stop the mobs’ thuggery and destruction now. Demand that they use as much force as is required to end the carnage. Demand budgets be re-instated for municipal, state and federal police forces, if they have been reduced. Not only that, expand them where they feel it is necessary. DO NOT LISTEN TO THE RADICAL LEFT or the mainline liberal media acting as their voices (they are like America’s Pravda). 

Threaten to work to defeat any cowardly politician at the next election if they cave to ludicrous demands of the radical left (and public shame them before the election). Turn up en masse at city council meetings and forcefully, loudly, demand police forces’ budgets be restored if they have been cut. Demand forcefully and loudly that destruction of private property and public buildings be stopped immediately, the looting and arson cease now, the beatings and murders be stopped, and the perpetrators prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

When liberal politicians use the new buzz-phrase “re-imagine community safety” or “re-imagine policing” understand they are wanting to embark upon an untested and dangerous social engineering experiment that will only hurt the people they swore to serve and protect. Tell them to re-imagine their own unemployment. November is coming soon.

Also see "Were the Minneapolis Riots Planned?" 

Mark Davis Pickup
Canada

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

WERE THE MINNEAPOLIS RIOTS PRE-PLANNED?

At the time George Floyd was killed, I noticed peaceful protests rooted in righteous and rightful outrage moved quickly—too quickly—to rioting, like accelerant put on a flame. Outrage became outrageous with the burning of buildings, looting, and mindless violence. But the mindless violence seemed a little too orchestrated and planned. 

As I watched the images unfold on nightly newscasts, I mentioned this to my wife and even tweeted my suspicion. Well, others must have been suspicious too and began digging into what seemed to be bubbling under the surface, and the causes. 

The following video may give a bit of insight into what was and is happening and the instigation of violence that grew to cities across America. 


Sunday, July 5, 2020

AMERICANS—STAND UP FOR AMERICA

America just celebrated 244 years since the signing of the Declaration of Independence in 1776. In 1787, after grappling about how the new nation would govern itself, a constitutional convention assembled in Philadelphia to draw up a Constitution. Uncertainty pervaded the convention about whether all members would accept its provisions. The oldest member of the convention was Benjamin Franklin. He was instrumental in gaining its acceptance. While the last of the members were signing the Document, Franklin looked toward the President’s chair, behind which was painted the image of a rising sun. The great old man commented to a few members near him:

Benjamin Franklin
“I have often and often, in the course of the sessions, and the vicissitudes of my hopes and fears as to its issue, looked at that behind the President, without being able to tell whether it is rising or setting; but now at length, I have the happiness to know, that it is a rising, and not a setting sun.”[1]

Throughout nearly two and a half centuries, the sun has shone on America. The nation’s sunlit uplands gave birth to liberty, human rights and opportunities the likes of which has never been Known in human history.  Eleven years earlier, when America’s Founding Fathers penned those eternal words, what began was the nation’s morality, mores. Its national ethos grew, continues to grow and mature with ever increasing revelation of the Founding ideals that unfold with each new phase of human insight: 

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.”

Such sacred words may have been penned by men, but their quilled pen was surely guided by the invisible hand of the Almighty.  God smiled on America. By 1817 America was flourishing so much so that the nation’s 5th President, James Monroe stated: “If we look to the history of other nations, ancient or modern, we find no other example of a growth so rapid, so gigantic, of a people so prosperous and happy.” All within within forty years of the founding of the new nation. That rapid growth, prosperity and happiness has continued to expand exponentially.

Although haltingly at times—sometimes two steps forward
and one back— America has moved ever closer to those divinely inspired ideals of the Declaration of Independence. She became the standard bearer for the rights of man. That standard has given a shining example for the world to emulate and create climates for human liberty to take root. Even autocratic countries that suppress human rights pay lip-service to the acceptance and respect for principles of human rights. These are rights based upon absolute truths we find as the foundation of the Declaration of Independence. Now granted, America still has distance to go in matters such as racial equality, but the journey continues constantly—perhaps not fast enough for many people, but America leads the world in its quest of human liberty, prosperity and happiness. 

Communist China’s best-known dissident, Wei Jingsheng,
Wei Jingsheng
was held prisoner for 18 years in communist China’s prisons. Despite enduring physical and mental torture, Wei made a statement to Amnesty International in 1998 that “Under the principles of democratic systems, human rights have been established in more and more countries.” Although basic human rights were kept from him, and millions of other Chinese people by the communists, Wei issued a statement on January 8th, 1998, in which he said: “This is the power of truth. I have no qualms about sacrificing myself for democracy or human rights, … Truth is truth.”

Truth is truth. But now dark clouds of sinister internal unrest are gathering to threaten America and blot out the sun. American cities are being set ablaze by anarchists, and the far-left—many motivated by communism—and served by useful idiots and anti-social malcontents. Hoodlums and thugs call for the dismantling of police forces everywhere so they can have their way unimpeded. They are enemies of freedom, enemies of liberty. They mindlessly shout slogans about white privilege, systemic racism, colonialism. They tear down statues of America’s past and want to erase any good connection with history involving white Americans. They are what they call others: racists. 

On July 2nd, I received an email from Terry Schilling, Executive Director of the American Principles Project in which he said:

The Democratic National Committee sent out a tweet last night that said Mount Rushmore — and President Trump’s Fourth of July celebration there — are “glorifying white supremacy.”

"It wasn’t a fringe left-wing group: it was the official Twitter account of the national party committee, and it wasn’t a mistake, even though they deleted the tweet within the hour."

"And, during the week of America’s Independence Day, they made this outrageous contention while linking to a British newspaper story. I doubt they caught the irony."

"Bottom line: last night, the Democratic National Committee showed the American people what they really believe … and then, like cowards, tried to backtrack and hide their extreme views.”

Golda Meir
(1898-1978)
The Democratic Party is falling in step with the far-left’s narrative and agenda. The intent of that narrative and agenda will be, in part, to try and erase America’s history or rewrite it. What would that achieve? What does history tell us? There was a time in Europe, when other dark forces tried to eliminate the Jewish race, wipe them from the face of the earth, and erase Jewish history from human memory. After the Second World War, Golda Meir helped found the State of Israel (1948) and served as its 4th Prime Minister. She said, “One cannot and must not try to erase the past merely because it does not fit the present.” 

The far left (and the Democratic Party that’s beholding to them) will replace sweet liberty with uncontrolled license. They are tearing down America under the guise of racial inequality. They will try to eradicate the past that does not portray anything but America’s mistakes and faults. Yes, there is racial inequality in America. America is people and all people are flawed and fall short of that great vision articulated so eloquently in its blazing foundational Declaration.  But its words beckon across the centuries for America to rise to its noble calling. America is changing because the spirit of those towering words demand it, not because of the violence and disorder of malefactors and chanting malcontents.  

Those eternal words whisper in your ear and mine: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” 

With what will the far left replace those sacred ideals that governed America’s unprecedented journey toward enlightened human rights and equality?
We do not know and dare not imagine if “autonamous” zones of Minneapolis and Seattle are any indication of what awaits America if the likes of antifa and others of their ilk get their way. 

The far left represents a small minority of Americans. I do not understand why Democratic politicians and the Democratic Party have bowed to them and their demands. America’s majority are law abiding citizens, they want law and order, safe streets, opportunities for their children that free enterprise can bring, and the freedom to seek the American dream, as it applies to them. I believe most Americans want leaders who will stand against fashionable but shallow anger against America and Her institutions and Her Judeo-Christian roots. They have (and want from their leaders) an abiding commitment to the ideals that make America the best country that has ever existed. 

Americans must refuse to let antifa and the far left tear down the America you and I hold dear! Stand against the mobs, and for those ideals that made America the best country in the world.

If America never existed, do you think the disabled and chronically ill (like me) would be as well treated as we are? No, I don’t think so. It’s that standard bearer thing again. America’s influence has made the world a better place. 

I believe that the best person to lead the United States of through this tumultuous and dangerous time is President Trump's
firm and decisive leadership. Over the next four years, he can set the course that leads America into another period of unparalleled prosperity and happiness for everyone, not just some. He will protect and care for the nation’s most vulnerable (as we’ve seen him do in appointing conservative pro-Life judges and defunding the despicable abortion business of Planned Parenthood.) 

Good people of America! Do something to save the greatest nation ever to exist. Please, get involved to re-elect President Trump. The election in November will decide the fate of America. Don't set the sun set on America.

MDP

[1] FRANKLIN ON THE CONSTITUTION in READINGS IN WORLD HISTORY, ed. Leften S. Stavrianos, Loretta Kreider Andrews, George I. Blanksten, Roger F. Hackett, Paul L. Murphy and Lacey Baldwin Smith (Boston: Allyn and Bacon, Inc., 1962) p. 258.

Friday, June 26, 2020

LOVE WILL ULTIMATELY PREVAIL

Have you ever wondered why God put His precious gift of life in such frail packaging? If life is so precious and sacred—as the Scriptures proclaim—then why did God place it in bodies of flesh and bone? Skin and flesh tear and bleed; bones and hearts break.

Why didn't God encase His precious gift of life in bodies as tough as granite and the human psyche safely guarded as though behind some mighty fortress? Such thoughts occasionally rise within me from a desire to protect loved-ones from life's pains and sorrows.

After all, there would be no need to wipe away tears if none are shed. But then, consider that humans encased in bodies like granite, and hearts like stone, would be of no use to God or man. Granite is impenetrable. Hearts of stone would never ache, break or melt.

After more than 36 years of chronic illness (multiple sclerosis) I have come to the conclusion that our time on earth is for spiritual growth, not mere survival.  The Scriptures tell us that God is love (1John 4.8). A God of love must have something to give his love to and humanity is the object of his love. We know this because, as far as we can tell, humanity is the only thing in creation to bear the indelible image of God (Genesis 1.26-27). A God of love must surely want to be loved in return. A central part of genuine love is that it is given freely to the loved. 

Love is a choice
Real love is a choice, an act of the will. That is what makes love such a high ask proposition. As soon as there are choices, there's a risk of the loved making the wrong choice. The risks of love are horribly high for both God and humanity. But the prospect of living in a loveless world is unthinkable!

When God created human free will, He knew his love might not be returned. People may choose to love the world rather than the Creator of it. When our Lord said, "For where your treasure is, there also will be your heart" He was challenging human priorities and loyalties (Matthew 6.21). Christ was laying out a stark choice for humanity: Either love God and the permanent things of heaven (yet unseen) or the temporary things of earth. Our first love and priority can be to seek "treasures on earth" (to use Christ's words) or "treasures in heaven."  Jesus spoke of them as two mutually exclusive masters of the heart. "No-one can serve two masters. Either he will hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You can not serve God and mammon." (verse 24.)

Mammon is an Aramaic word meaning wealth or property. But it can also symbolize anything temporal and fleeting such as youth, beauty, health or social status.

To choose anything over God is to rebuff his love. Love spurned is a terrible thing. To love without reciprocation is bitter. Divine overtures rejected, despised or mocked must be unbearably painful to the heart of God.  I suppose He could have made us without the capacity to decide and programmed us like robots to drone his praises. But that would hardly be love returned, it would hardly be a love worth having.

Jesus said He would rather have people who are hot or cold toward Him, not lukewarm (Revelation 3.14-16). A heart animated with love or hate is still human; a heart dead with indifference may as well be made of granite. Indifference to the love of God is worse than cursing him!

Love is vulnerable
God made himself vulnerable for the sake of loving and being loved. Why should we expect anything else? To love is to be vulnerable. It goes both ways. Hearts of stone and souls in fortresses would not be protected from risks and buffeting of life, they would be prevented from truly living! Is that what I should want for my loved-ones in order to save them from pain or sorrow?

Vulnerable people give, accept and radiate love best.

I wrote earlier that I have come to the conclusion that the purpose of our time on earth is spiritual growth, not mere survival. This is what I meant: We only have a short time to learn and grow in reciprocal love (both human and divine). God's model for love encourages interdependence not independence.  We were designed to live in communities not fortresses. At the very beginning of creation, the Creator said, "It is not good for man to live alone." (Genesis 2.18).

Made for relationships
We are designed for relationships. Granted, you may find the odd recluse who prefers life as a hermit, but they are the exceptions to the rule. No! They are the exceptions that prove the rule! Fortresses separate and isolate. Granite is cold and hard. 

People live best in the warmth and welcome of interdependent communities that encourage reciprocal love. Love makes human beings vulnerable and fragile—it also gives meaning to life.

Despite the present violence we see each night on television, I still believe that God's divine love will prevail. That's the treasure in heaven about which Jesus spoke. 

MDP

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

THE FALSE PARALLEL CHURCH?

I am posting the following text in its entirety from an email I received this morning. It is critically important for all who love the universal Mother Catholic Church. — MDP

One Peter Five
June 10, 2020
Intro by Steve Skojec

Viganò: Vatican II Marked The Beginning of a False, Parallel Church 
Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò
I feel the need to offer a preface to the following text, the latest essay from Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, because I have recently been accused of being an opponent of his. This is not true, but the misperception is a consequence of public comments I have made to the effect that he now speaks so frequently that he has degraded himself from prophet to pundit and that he has consequently lost some of his force.
I don’t think there’s anything wrong with punditry — after all, I would likely be considered a part of that class myself. But what Viganò brought us in the moment of that initial groundbreaking testimony in August of 2018 was something totally unique: the unvarnished perspective of an insider who understood how deep the corruption in the Church had really become, and who knew where all the bodies were buried. I disliked seeing the potency of his witness diluted through what seemed like too frequent commentary on various and sundry topics, often with a political edge.
And I have become very cynical about the amount of talk the few prelates willing to speak out have offered about our unprecedented crisis. Letters and essays and petitions abound, but nothing changes.
When I saw this morning that Viganò had released yet another statement, just a few days after his letter to President Trump, my first reaction was a sort of amused incredulity. Wasn’t he just proving my point?
But then I received the text from Giuseppe Pellegrino, who translated it for publication on Marco Tosatti’s website. I was given the gracious permission to publish it myself, and so I set about the task of reading.
And I have to apologize. Because Viganò the prophet is the author of this document.
This may be the most important thing he’s written. It’s hard to compare it, because it’s so different, to his original testimony. Each accomplishes something quite different. Perhaps neither is more or less important than the other, but both are vital in different ways.
In today’s text, we see the calmest, most succinct, most direct acknowledgment of what the Second Vatican Council has wrought that I have ever read from a member of the episcopacy. Traditionalists have often lamented that even our “heroes” within the Church are conciliar apologists, almost to a man. Here, in one serene and carefully considered text, Viganò shrugs that off and makes clear that in order for us to address what we are facing, we must all do the same:
There comes a moment in our life when, through the disposition of Providence, we are faced with a decisive choice for the future of the Church and for our eternal salvation. I speak of the choice between understanding the error into which practically all of us have fallen, almost always without evil intentions, and wanting to continue to look the other way or justify ourselves.
In only 4,000 words, Viganò addresses ecumenism, the Assisi events, Pachamama, the liturgy, the Abu Dhabi statement, the attempted change to the death penalty teaching, Bergoglio’s election as a triumph of revolution, the failed dubia attempt, and even the long-disputed question of subsistit in!
In one of the most powerful paragraphs of the text, he lays the origins of the problems we face at the feet of the Council itself:
[I]t is surprising that people persist in not wanting to investigate the root causes of the present crisis, limiting themselves to deploring the present excesses as if they were not the logical and inevitable consequence of a plan orchestrated decades ago. If the pachamama could be adored in a church, we owe it to Dignitatis Humanae. If we have a liturgy that is Protestantized and at times even paganized, we owe it to the revolutionary action of Msgr. Annibale Bugnini and to the post-conciliar reforms. If the Abu Dhabi Declaration was signed, we owe it to Nostra Aetate. If we have come to the point of delegating decisions to the Bishops’ Conferences – even in grave violation of the Concordat, as happened in Italy – we owe it to collegiality, and to its updated version, synodality. Thanks to synodality, we found ourselves with Amoris Laetitia having to look for a way to prevent what was obvious to everyone from appearing: that this document, prepared by an impressive organizational machine, intended to legitimize Communion for the divorced and cohabiting, just as Querida Amazonia will be used to legitimize women priests (as in the recent case of an “episcopal vicaress” in Freiburg) and the abolition of Sacred Celibacy. The Prelates who sent the Dubia to Francis, in my opinion, demonstrated the same pious ingenuousness: thinking that Bergoglio, when confronted with the reasonably argued contestation of the error, would understand, correct the heterodox points, and ask for forgiveness.
Viganò acknowledges, in clear and unequivocal language, how “disconcerting” it is that we are in a “race towards the abyss” in which those at “the highest levels of the Church” have responsibility for “supporting these anti-Christian ideologies.”
This is, I believe, an historic text. I had the sense as I was reading it that it could signal a turning point — a lifting of the veil. We all know — we can all feel — that the pre- and post-conciliar variants of Catholicism are not the same religion. Viganò, rather than admonishing us to attempt to rationalize and reconcile these differences, gives us permission to call a spade a spade (emphasis added):
It is no accident: what these men affirm with impunity, scandalizing moderates, is what Catholics also believe, namely: that despite all the efforts of the hermeneutic of continuity which shipwrecked miserably at the first confrontation with the reality of the present crisis, it is undeniable that from Vatican II onwards a parallel church was built, superimposed over and diametrically opposed to the true Church of Christ.
The full text of Viganò’s essay is below. I offer my profound gratitude to Marco Tosatti and Giuseppe Pellegrino for allowing us to reprint it here, and to His Excellency for having the courage and clarity to write it. May it open a great many eyes.
[VIGANO:]
9 June 2020
Saint Ephrem
             I read with great interest the essay of His Excellency Athanasius Schneider published on LifeSiteNews on June 1, subsequently translated into Italian by Chiesa e post concilio, entitled There is no divine positive will or natural right to the diversity of religions. His Excellency’s study summarizes, with the clarity that distinguishes the words of those who speak according to Christ, the objections against the presumed legitimacy of the exercise of religious freedom that the Second Vatican Council theorized, contradicting the testimony of Sacred Scripture and the voice of Tradition, as well as the Catholic Magisterium which is the faithful guardian of both.
             The merit of His Excellency’s essay lies first of all in its grasp of the causal link between the principles enunciated or implied by Vatican II and their logical consequent effect in the doctrinal, moral, liturgical, and disciplinary deviations that have arisen and progressively developed to the present day.
The monstrum generated in modernist circles could have at first been misleading, but it has grown and strengthened, so that today it shows itself for what it really is in its subversive and rebellious nature. The creature that was conceived at that time is always the same, and it would be naive to think that its perverse nature could change. Attempts to correct the conciliar excesses – invoking the hermeneutic of continuity – have proven unsuccessful: Naturam expellas furca, tamen usque recurret [Drive nature out with a pitchfork; she will come right back] (Horace, Epist. I,10,24). The Abu Dhabi Declaration – and, as Bishop Schneider rightly observes, its first symptoms in the pantheon of Assisi – “was conceived in the spirit of the Second Vatican Council” as Bergoglio proudly confirms. 
            This “spirit of the Council” is the license of legitimacy that the innovators oppose to their critics, without realizing that it is precisely confessing that legacy that confirms not only the erroneousness of the present declarations but also the heretical matrix that supposedly justifies them. On closer inspection, never in the history of the Church has a Council presented itself as such a historic event that it was different from any other council: there was never talk of a “spirit of the Council of Nicea” or the “spirit of the Council of Ferrara-Florence,” even less the “spirit of the Council of Trent,” just as we never had a “post-conciliar” era after Lateran IV or Vatican I. 
            The reason is obvious: those Councils were all, indiscriminately, the expression in unison of the voice of Holy Mother Church, and for this very reason the voice of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Significantly, those who maintain the novelty of Vatican II also adhere to the heretical doctrine that places the God of the Old Testament in opposition to the God of the New Testament, as if there could be contradiction between the Divine Persons of the Most Holy Trinity. Evidently this opposition that is almost gnostic or cabbalistic is functional to the legitimization of a new subject that is voluntarily different and opposed to the Catholic Church. Doctrinal errors almost always betray some sort of Trinitarian heresy, and thus it is by returning to the proclamation of Trinitarian dogma that the doctrines that oppose it can be defeated: ut in confessione veræ sempiternæque deitatis, et in Personis proprietas, et in essentia unitas, et in majestate adoretur æqualitas: Professing the true and eternal Divinity, we adore what is proper to each Person, their unity in substance, and their equality in majesty. 
            Bishop Schneider cites several canons of the Ecumenical Councils that propose, in his opinion, doctrines that today are difficult to accept, such as for example the obligation to distinguish Jews by their clothing, or the ban on Christians serving Muslim or Jewish masters. Among these examples there is also the requirement of the traditio instrumentorum declared by the Council of Florence, which was later corrected by Pius XII’s Apostolic Constitution Sacramentum Ordinis. Bishop Athanasius comments: “One may rightly hope and believe that a future Pope or Ecumenical Council will correct the erroneous statement made” by Vatican II. This appears to me to be an argument that, although made with the best of intentions, undermines the Catholic edifice from its foundation. If in fact we admit that there may be Magisterial acts that, due to a changed sensitivity, are susceptible to abrogation, modification, or different interpretation with the passage of time, we inevitably fall under the condemnation of the Decree Lamentabili, and we end up offering justification to those who, recently, precisely on the basis of that erroneous assumption, declared that the death penalty “does not conform to the Gospel,” and thus amended the Catechism of the Catholic Church. And, by the same principle, in a certain way we could maintain that the words of Blessed Pius IX in Quanta Cura were in some manner corrected by Vatican II, just as His Excellency hopes could happen for Dignitatis Humanae. Among the examples he presents, none of them is in itself gravely erroneous or heretical: the fact that the Council of Florence declared that the traditio instrumentorum was necessary for the validity of Orders did not in any way compromise priestly ministry in the Church, leading her to confer Orders invalidly. Nor does it seem to me that one can affirm that this aspect, however important, led to doctrinal errors on the part of the faithful, something which instead has occurred only with the most recent Council. And when in the course of history various heresies spread, the Church always intervened promptly to condemn them, as happened at the time of the Synod of Pistoia in 1786, which was in some way anticipatory of Vatican II, especially where it abolished Communion outside of Mass, introduced the vernacular tongue, and abolished the prayers of the Canon said submissa voce; but even more so when it theorized about the basis of episcopal collegiality, reducing the primacy of the pope to a mere ministerial function. Re-reading the acts of that Synod leaves us amazed at the literal formulation of the same errors that we find later, in increased form, in the Council presided over by John XXIII and Paul VI. On the other hand, just as the Truth comes from God, so error is fed by and feeds on the Adversary, who hates the Church of Christ and her heart: the Holy Mass and the Most Holy Eucharist. 
There comes a moment in our life when, through the disposition of Providence, we are faced with a decisive choice for the future of the Church and for our eternal salvation. I speak of the choice between understanding the error into which practically all of us have fallen, almost always without evil intentions, and wanting to continue to look the other way or justify ourselves. 
            We have also committed the error, among others, of considering our interlocutors as people who, despite the difference of their ideas and their faith, were still motivated by good intentions and who would be willing to correct their errors if they could open up to our Faith. Together with numerous Council Fathers, we thought of ecumenism as a process, an invitation that calls dissidents to the one Church of Christ, idolaters and pagans to the one True God, and the Jewish people to the promised Messiah. But from the moment it was theorized in the conciliar commissions, ecumenism was configured in a way that was in direct opposition to the doctrine previously expressed by the Magisterium. 
            We have thought that certain excesses were only an exaggeration of those who allowed themselves to be swept up in enthusiasm for novelty; we sincerely believed that seeing John Paul II surrounded by charmers-healers , buddhist monks, imams, rabbis, protestant pastors and other heretics gave proof of the Church’s ability to summon people together in order to ask God for peace, while the authoritative example of this action initiated a deviant succession of pantheons that were more or less official, even to the point of seeing Bishops carrying the unclean idol of the pachamama on their shoulders, sacrilegiously concealed under the pretext of being a representation of sacred motherhood. 
But if the image of an infernal divinity was able to enter into Saint Peter’s, this is part of a crescendo which the other side foresaw from the beginning. Numerous practicing Catholics, and perhaps also a majority of Catholic clergy, are today convinced that the Catholic Faith is no longer necessary for eternal salvation; they believe that the One and Triune God revealed to our fathers is the same as the god of Mohammed. Already twenty years ago we heard this repeated from pulpits and episcopal cathedrae, but recently we hear it being affirmed with emphasis even from the highest Throne.
             We know well that, invoking the saying in Scripture Littera enim occidit, spiritus autem vivificat [The letter brings death, but the spirit gives life (2 Cor 3:6)]the progressives and modernists astutely knew how to hide equivocal expressions in the conciliar texts, which at the time appeared harmless to most but that today are revealed in their subversive value. It is the method employed in the use of the phrase subsistit in: saying a half-truth not so much as not to offend the interlocutor (assuming that is licit to silence the truth of God out of respect for His creature), but with the intention of being able to use the half-error that would be instantly dispelled if the entire truth were proclaimed. Thus “Ecclesia Christi subsistit in Ecclesia Catholica” does not specify the identity of the two, but the subsistence of one in the other and, for consistency, also in other churches: here is the opening to interconfessional celebrations, ecumenical prayers, and the inevitable end of any need for the Church in the order of salvation, in her unicity, and in her missionary nature. 
            Some may remember that the first ecumenical gatherings were held with the schismatics of the East, and very prudently with other Protestant sects. Apart from Germany, Holland, and Switzerland, in the beginning the countries of Catholic tradition did not welcome mixed celebrations with Protestant pastors and Catholic priests together. I recall that at the time there was talk of removing the penultimate doxology from the Veni Creator so as not to offend the Orthodox, who do not accept the Filioque. Today we hear the surahs of the Koran recited from the pulpits of our churches, we see an idol of wood adored by religious sisters and brothers, we hear Bishops disavow what up until yesterday seemed to us to be the most plausible excuses of so many extremisms. What the world wants, at the instigation of Masonry and its infernal tentacles, is to create a universal religion that is humanitarian and ecumenical, from which the jealous God whom we adore is banished. And if this is what the world wants, any step in the same direction by the Church is an unfortunate choice which will turn against those who believe that they can jeer at God. The hopes of the Tower of Babel cannot be brought back to life by a globalist plan that has as its goal the cancellation of the Catholic Church, in order to replace it with a confederation of idolaters and heretics united by environmentalism and universal brotherhood. There can be no brotherhood except in Christ, and only in Christ: qui non est mecum, contra me est
            It is disconcerting that few people are aware of this race towards the abyss, and that few realize the responsibility of the highest levels of the Church in supporting these anti-Christian ideologies, as if the Church’s leaders want to guarantee that they have a place and a role on the bandwagon of aligned thought. And it is surprising that people persist in not wanting to investigate the root causes of the present crisis, limiting themselves to deploring the present excesses as if they were not the logical and inevitable consequence of a plan orchestrated decades ago. If the pachamama could be adored in a church, we owe it to Dignitatis Humanae. If we have a liturgy that is Protestantized and at times even paganized, we owe it to the revolutionary action of Msgr. Annibale Bugnini and to the post-conciliar reforms. If the Abu Dhabi Declaration was signed, we owe it to Nostra Aetate. If we have come to the point of delegating decisions to the Bishops’ Conferences – even in grave violation of the Concordat, as happened in Italy – we owe it to collegiality, and to its updated version, synodality. Thanks to synodality, we found ourselves with Amoris Laetitia having to look for a way to prevent what was obvious to everyone from appearing: that this document, prepared by an impressive organizational machine, intended to legitimize Communion for the divorced and cohabiting, just as Querida Amazonia will be used to legitimize women priests (as in the recent case of an “episcopal vicaress” in Freiburg) and the abolition of Sacred Celibacy. The Prelates who sent the Dubia to Francis, in my opinion, demonstrated the same pious ingenuousness: thinking that Bergoglio, when confronted with the reasonably argued contestation of the error, would understand, correct the heterodox points, and ask for forgiveness. 
            The Council was used to legitimize the most aberrant doctrinal deviations, the most daring liturgical innovations, and the most unscrupulous abuses, all while Authority remained silent. This Council was so exalted that it was presented as the only legitimate reference for Catholics, clergy, and bishops, obscuring and connoting with a sense of contempt the doctrine that the Church had always authoritatively taught, and prohibiting the perennial liturgy that for millennia had nourished the faith of an uninterrupted line of faithful, martyrs, and saints. Among other things, this Council has proven to be the only one that has caused so many interpretative problems and so many contradictions with respect to the preceding Magisterium, while there is not one other council – from the Council of Jerusalem to Vatican I – that does not harmonize perfectly with the entire Magisterium or that needs so much interpretation. 
            I confess it with serenity and without controversy: I was one of the many people who, despite many perplexities and fears which today have proven to be absolutely legitimate, trusted the authority of the Hierarchy with unconditional obedience. In reality, I think that many people, including myself, did not initially consider the possibility that there could be a conflict between obedience to an order of the Hierarchy and fidelity to the Church herself. What made tangible this unnatural, indeed I would even say perverse, separation between the Hierarchy and the Church, between obedience and fidelity, was certainly this most recent Pontificate. 
            In the Room of Tears adjacent to the Sistine Chapel, while Msgr. Guido Marini prepared the white rocchetto, mozzetta, and stole for the first appearance of the “newly elected” Pope, Bergoglio exclaimed: “Sono finite le carnevalate! [The carnivals are over!],” scornfully refusing the insignia that all the Popes up until then had humbly accepted as the distinguishing garb of the Vicar of Christ. But those words contained truth, even if it was spoken involuntarily: on March 13, 2013, the mask fell from the conspirators, who were finally free of the inconvenient presence of Benedict XVI and brazenly proud of having finally succeeded in promoting a Cardinal who embodied their ideals, their way of revolutionizing the Church, of making doctrine malleable, morals adaptable, liturgy adulterable, and discipline disposable. And all this was considered, by the protagonists of the conspiracy themselves, the logical consequence and obvious application of Vatican II, which according to them had been weakened by the critiques expressed by Benedict XVI. The greatest affront of that Pontificate was the liberal permission of the celebration of the venerated Tridentine Liturgy, the legitimacy of which was finally recognized, disproving fifty years of its illegitimate ostracization. It is no accident that Bergoglio’s supporters are the same people who saw the Council as the first event of a new church, prior to which there was an old religion with an old liturgy. 
            It is no accident: what these men affirm with impunity, scandalizing moderates, is what Catholics also believe, namely: that despite all the efforts of the hermeneutic of continuity which shipwrecked miserably at the first confrontation with the reality of the present crisis, it is undeniable that from Vatican II onwards a parallel church was built, superimposed over and diametrically opposed to the true Church of Christ. This parallel church progressively obscured the divine institution founded by Our Lord in order to replace it with a spurious entity, corresponding to the desired universal religion that was first theorized by Masonry. Expressions like new humanism, universal fraternity, dignity of man, are the watchwords of philanthropic humanitarianism which denies the true God, of horizontal solidarity of vague spiritualist inspiration and of ecumenical irenism that the Church unequivocally condemns. “Nam et loquela tua manifestum te facit [Even your speech gives you away]” (Mt 26, 73): this very frequent, even obsessive recourse to the same vocabulary of the enemy betrays adherence to the ideology he inspires; while on the other hand the systematic renunciation of the clear, unequivocal and crystalline language of the Church confirms the desire to detach itself not only from the Catholic form but even from its substance. 
            What we have for years heard enunciated, vaguely and without clear connotations, from the highest Throne, we then find elaborated in a true and proper manifesto in the supporters of the present Pontificate: the democratization of the Church, no longer through the collegiality invented by Vatican II but by the synodal path inaugurated by the Synod on the Family; the demolition of the ministerial priesthood through its weakening with exceptions to ecclesiastical celibacy and the introduction of feminine figures with quasi-sacerdotal duties; the silent passage from ecumenism directed towards separated brethren to a form of pan-ecumenism that reduces the Truth of the One Triune God to the level of idolatries and the most infernal superstitions; the acceptance of an interreligious dialogue that presupposes religious relativism and excludes missionary proclamation; the demythologization of the Papacy, pursued by Bergoglio as a theme of his pontificate; the progressive legitimization of all that is politically correct: gender theory, sodomy, homosexual marriage, Malthusian doctrines, ecologism, immigrationism… If we do not recognize that the roots of these deviations are found in the principles laid down by the Council, it will be impossible to find a cure: if our diagnosis persists, against all the evidence, in excluding the initial pathology, we cannot prescribe a suitable therapy.          
            This operation of intellectual honesty requires a great humility, first of all in recognizing that for decades we have been led into error, in good faith, by people who, established in authority, have not known how to watch over and guard the flock of Christ: some for the sake of living quietly, some because of having too many commitments, some out of convenience, and finally some in bad faith or even malicious intent. These last ones who have betrayed the Church must be identified, taken aside, invited to amend and, if they do not repent they must be expelled from the sacred enclosure. This is how a true Shepherd acts, who has the well-being of the sheep at heart and who gives his life for them; we have had and still have far too many mercenaries, for whom the consent of the enemies of Christ is more important than fidelity to his Spouse.
          Just as I honestly and serenely obeyed questionable orders sixty years ago, believing that they represented the loving voice of the Church, so today with equal serenity and honesty I recognize that I have been deceived. Being coherent today by persevering in error would represent a wretched choice and would make me an accomplice in this fraud. Claiming a clarity of judgment from the beginning would not be honest: we all knew that the Council would be more or less a revolution, but we could not have imagined that it would prove to be so devastating, even for the work of those who should have prevented it. And if up until Benedict XVI we could still imagine that the coup d’état of Vatican II (which Cardinal Suenens called “the 1789 of the Church”) had experienced a slowdown, in these last few years even the most ingenuous among us have understood that silence for fear of causing a schism, the effort to repair papal documents in a Catholic sense in order to remedy their intended ambiguity, the appeals and dubia made to Francis that remained eloquently unanswered, are all a confirmation of the situation of the most serious apostasy to which the highest levels of the Hierarchy are exposed, while the Christian people and the clergy feel hopelessly abandoned and that they are regarded by the bishops almost with annoyance.
            The Abu Dhabi Declaration is the ideological manifesto of an idea of peace and cooperation between religions that could have some possibility of being tolerated if it came from pagans who are deprived of the light of Faith and the fire of Charity. But whoever has the grace of being a Child of God in virtue of Holy Baptism should be horrified at the idea of being able to construct a blasphemous modern version of the Tower of Babel, seeking to bring together the one true Church of Christ, heir to the promises made to the Chosen People, with those who deny the Messiah and with those who consider the very idea of a Triune God to be blasphemous. The love of God knows no measure and does not tolerate compromises, otherwise it simply is not Charity, without which it is not possible to remain in Him: qui manet in caritate, in Deo manet, et Deus in eo [whoever remains in love remains in God and God in him] (1 Jn 4:16). It matters little whether it is a declaration or a Magisterial document: we know well that the subversive mens of the innovators plays games with these sort of quibbles in order to spread error. And we know well that the purpose of these ecumenical and interreligious initiatives is not to convert those who are far from the one Church to Christ, but to divert and corrupt those who still hold the Catholic Faith, leading them to believe that it is desirable to have a great universal religion that brings together the three great Abrahamic religions “in a single house”: this is the triumph of the Masonic plan in preparation for the kingdom of the Antichrist! Whether this materializes through a dogmatic Bull, a declaration, or an interview with Scalfari in La Repubblica matters little, because Bergoglio’s supporters wait for his words as a signal to which they respond with a series of initiatives that have already been prepared and organized for some time. And if Bergoglio does not follow the directions he has received, ranks of theologians and clergy are ready to lament over the “solitude of Pope Francis” as a premise for his resignation (I think for example of Massimo Faggioli in one of his recent essays). On the other hand, it would not be the first time that they use the Pope when he goes along with their plans and get rid of him or attack him as soon as he does not. 
            Last Sunday, the Church celebrated the Most Holy Trinity, and in the Breviary it offers us the recitation of the Symbolum Athanasianum, now outlawed by the conciliar liturgy and already reduced to only two occasions in the liturgical reform of 1962. The first words of that now-disappeared Symbolum remain inscribed in letters of gold: “Quicumque vult salvus esse, ante omnia opus est ut teneat Catholicam fidem; quam nisi quisque integram inviolatamque servaverit, absque dubio in aeternum peribit – Whosoever wishes to be saved, before all things it is necessary that he hold the Catholic faith; For unless a person shall have kept this faith whole and inviolate, without doubt he shall eternally perish.”
 + Carlo Maria Viganò
Translated by Giuseppe Pellegrino @pellegrino2020
Originally published at Marco Tosatti’s blog