Comments: 58

  1. Von Balthebrand April 20, 2014 at 8:37 pm

    Is risen ineed, Alleluia!

  2. Teresina April 21, 2014 at 9:37 am

    As He promised, alleluia!

  3. Benedicta April 21, 2014 at 10:32 am

    This one is for Latin Mass lovers – a modern take by Karl Jenkins on Dies Irae….the sequence from the Requiem Mass. Very apocalyptic Day of Wrath…..just think of the persecuted Church – the book of Revelation was written for them….very comforting in persecution….they will get justice.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iOAaNFuVi3c

    On a softer note…..

    http://www.crisismagazine.com/2014/the-greatest-easter-painting-ever-made

    Love this!

    Happy Easter….buns, chocolate….whatever…

     

     

  4. bamac April 21, 2014 at 11:14 am

    Maybe you all have sen this already  but a friend sent it to me as an Easter wish …. I send it to you also as an Easter wish …

    Mrs Mac

     

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=565874703479003

  5. Teresina April 22, 2014 at 6:50 am

    Benedicta, Beautiful painting; very graphic graphics from the Welsh!

    Mrs Mac, thank you and Easter blessings to you and all at BF.

  6. Rubyshine April 22, 2014 at 10:03 am

    I just thought I'd share this. It's what my daughter's daycare class discussed about Easter. This is what 2 yr olds had to say. I thought it was a bit gorgeous.

  7. Rubyshine April 22, 2014 at 10:07 am

     Perhaps it will work this time

  8. Rubyshine April 22, 2014 at 10:09 am
  9. Rubyshine April 22, 2014 at 10:10 am

    Oh well I give up. But after reading the Easter story the little ones had everything to say from "Jesus loves you", to "sore sore" and "poor Jesus"

  10. Dominican April 22, 2014 at 8:13 pm

    Rubyshine, your post above reminded me that many many years ago – I was a pre schooler, I found a picture of Jesus on the cross in a missal.  I asked my mother about the picture. I don't recall what she said but I remember clearly what I said. It was "poor Jesus".  How wonderful that a daycare tells the true story of Easter

  11. banter April 22, 2014 at 9:49 pm

    Hi folks, I wanted to comment that I attended my first ever Latin Mass on Easter Sunday just been. I thought it was fabulous. My expectation was that I wouldn't be able to follow it.  I was very surprised to find the opposite was more true. In my favour was a pretty thorough understanding of what occurs when and where in the Catholic liturgy. So in other words familiarity with the Novus Ordo certainly helps.  But secondly I have now been singing in Latin the parts of the mass with the Catholic CathedrL choir in Christchurch for the last 7 years or so.  This means if I lost my place I could catch up once I started recognising the words again.  So I did get lost during the liturgy of the Eucharist because a lot of that was said silently ( that surprised me) and then I suddenly recognised the Pater Noster words and caught up.

    The third thing that helped was my music training at university and studies into medieval music.  I simply recognised the chants.  One was an old 12-13th century chant that at university was described as an exemplary example of early polyphony… Now hearing it at church. What a thrill really because I was always so disappointed in my university days to realise that the only ones interested in Catholic music were the academics, not the Catholics.

    So a lot of the traditional Latin mass, which should have felt completely foreign to me as a post Vatican II baby, simply didn't.  In fact it felt more right.  It's a bit like an antipodean experiencing a northern hemisphere Chrsitmas for the first time.  There was this realisation that the images and symbols simply work better and more harmony with one another.

    i'll continue…

  12. banter April 22, 2014 at 9:59 pm

    What I like immediately was the sense of reverence and the quietness.  It is very compelling.  There is less noise, less distracting noise.  There were lots of children there.  If they made noise I didn't notice.  There was no conversations in the pews about golf and 'how's so and so these days'.  There were only people praying.  I was actually less aware of the congregation than normal somehow.  I felt a certain release because I wasn't expected to do anything other than pray; I didn't have to keep responding.  My husband commented on this too.  It all just happened around us.

    likewise I felt the priests were released from the obligation to entertain.  Because they face away there is no need to perform, to provide entertainment.  They can get on with what they are meant to do.

    Afterwards I spoke briefly to the main priest mentioning it was my first Latin mass. And I said to him it was fabulous, and then added 'why did we ever change?'.

  13. Teresina April 23, 2014 at 5:06 am

    Banter, exactly how I feel: why did we ever change?  There is just so much peace I find at the Latin Mass that doesn't occur at the Novus Ordo.  I think the problem is there are so many people involved at a Novus Ordo Mass that it is distracting.  Although I only experienced the Latin Mass as a child, I remember the quietness and the stillness as you explain it.  As children we were well aware of where we were too and being quiet wasn't a problem even though we were only children.  I find children attending a Latin Mass are quiet because they emulate the adults.  I think the experience of peace is why the Mass is growing as it is overseas because it gives time to commune with God above everything else.  We greet each other and chat after Mass (outside) so things are in a better perspective.  Thanks for your comments, Banter.

  14. Teresina April 23, 2014 at 5:23 am

    A very interesting commentary on the rending of the temple veil from the Telmud:

     

    http://www.etsjets.org/files/JETS-PDFs/48/48-2/48-2-pp301-316_JETS.pdf

     

  15. Vatican2Survivor April 23, 2014 at 10:46 am

    Dear Banter–you've made my day–heart felt thanks. There is a Catholic lady doing her dodctorate on Latin Chants it developed thanks to her–like your own– discovery of the  the treasure of inestimable value greater than any art and the pseudo-religious music of the pop versions of old protestant hymns  with no lasting value unlike the Gregorian chant and the Haydn Mass, the Mozart Salve Regina and the Padre Martini motet–wevev relaced sacred Catholic treasures with secular inspired drivel.

  16. Vatican2Survivor April 23, 2014 at 10:49 am

    This computer plays up–sorry the above was sent before I could proof read it, moderate it and get it to say what I wanted to say–but thanks Banter for your beautiful comments.

  17. bamac April 23, 2014 at 11:20 am

    Banter,

    I too wish to thank you for your comments on the spiritual beauty of the Latin Holy Mass and the prayerfulness you found there…. I hope that you and your husband can attend it more in the future and come to love it even more ….you will understand how those of us who grew up with that reverent form of Holy Mass  and are now no longer able to attend it feel.

    Teresina,

    I agree that the number of laity moving around the altar , opening the Tabernacle, receiving Holy Communion at the same time as Father does ,criss-crossing each other as they take up their places for distribution, is a big distraction when one is trying to concentrate on the Sacrificial aspect of the Mass and personal communication with Our Blessed Lord who has just made Himself really present on the altar and Who is even more  desirous of coming  to us in Communion than we are to receive Him.

    Boanerges,

    Thank you for your idea of giving us a regular Sunday Scrum … much appreciated indeed,

    Mrs Mac

     

  18. Teresina April 23, 2014 at 3:58 pm

    Just to add to an earlier post where I mention the Jewish Talmud and the rending of the temple veil, I didn't have time to develop it further but what is so interesting is the quote in the article I linked to which refers to the fact that 40 years before the destruction of the temple (at the time of Christ's crucifixion) the crimson thread which used to change to white (signifying the forgiveness of sins) from the time of the rending of the temple veil onwards remained crimson and there were several other unusual occurrences.  Scholars have opined that this meant there was a change in the covenant between God and the Jews from that time forward and also is an independent confirmation of Christ's death on the cross :

    "It has been taught: Forty years before the destruction of the Temple the western light went out, the crimson thread remained crimson, and the lot for the Lord always came up in the left hand. They would close the gates of the Temple by night and get up in the morning and find them wide open. Said [to the Temple] Rabban Yohanan ben Zakkai, "O Temple, why do you frighten us? We know that you will end up destroyed. For it has been said, Open your doors, O Lebanon, that the fire may devour your cedars!"' (Zech 11:1).17

  19. Teresina April 23, 2014 at 4:12 pm

    This post explains the changes that occurred in the Jewish sacrifice after Christ's death and to explains the sacrificial nature of the Mass:

    "The belief that it is the blood that makes atonement comes from Leviticus 17:11 which says ‘For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.’ Jewish scholars would say that this verse is taken out of content, because the chapter is speaking about the unlawfulness of eating blood. (but it seems like a pretty clear statement.) The New Testament Book of Hebrews confirms this when it says, “All things are cleansed with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness” (Hebrews 9:22). 

    O Yom Kippur (The Day of Atonement) 2 goats would be chosen. One goat was destined to die as the sacrifice, and the Nation’s sins were confessed and ‘placed’ onto the scapegoat. These two goats had to be identical in appearance. The choice would be made by drawing lots. Throughout history the lot to choose the sacrificial goat would always come up in the Priest’s right hand. To differentiate one goat from the other, a scarlet cord was tied around the horns of the Scapegoat. The Scapegoat, having become ‘guilty of sin’, was led away. The innocent goat died in its place. (This is fulfilled in the story of Jesus and Barabbas, where Barabbas, the guilty one, was set free, and Jesus, the innocent one, died in his place.

    On the Day of Atonement, The Scarlet Cord, which was tied onto the Scapegoat’s horns, turned white, signifying that God had accepted the sacrifice. (This is reminiscent of Isaiah 1:18 which says, ‘Though your sins are like scarlet, I will make them as white as snow.) 

    In the centuries following the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem (70 CE), the Jewish people began writing two versions of Jewish thought, religious history and commentary. One was written in Palestine and became known as the Jerusalem Talmud. The other was written in Babylon and was known as the Babylonian Talmud.

    We read in the Jerusalem Talmud:
    "Forty years before the destruction of the Temple, the western light went out, the crimson thread remained crimson, and the lot for the Lord always came up in the left hand. They would close the gates of the Temple by night and get up in the morning and find them wide open" (Jacob Neusner, The Yerushalmi, p.156-157). [the Temple was destroyed in 70 CE]

    A similar passage in the Babylonian Talmud states:
    "Our rabbis taught: During the last forty years before the destruction of the Temple the lot ['For the Lord'] did not come up in the right hand; nor did the crimson-colored strap become white; nor did the western most light shine; and the doors of the Hekel [Temple] would open by themselves" (Soncino version, Yoma 39b).

    What are these passages talking about? Since both Talmuds recount the same information, this indicates the knowledge of these events was accepted by the widespread Jewish community. 

    (There are many sources that site this, but I copied the above 4 paragraphs from http://www3.telus.net/public/kstam/e…s/evidence.htm )

    These events began happening after Jesus was crucified. This would lead us to believe that God was telling them something. No longer would the blood of lambs and goats be accepted to remove sin. The final sacrifice had been made."

    http://forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=841866

  20. Teresina April 23, 2014 at 4:52 pm

    Vatican2Survivor, I thought the following post would resonate with you as it does with me:

    " The Architectural Spirit Of The Liturgy

    Wilfred McClay, in Why Place Matters:

    As Winston Churchill famously declared during the Second World War, as an intervention in the debate over whether Britain should rebuild the bombed House of Commons just as it had been before, “We shape our buildings, and afterwards our buildings shape us.” Churchill favored the complete restoration of the initial design, but for reasons that were as much functional as traditional — albeit a kind of mystical functionalism. He believed that the institutions of British parliamentary self-government had been made possible in crucial ways, ways that defied enumeration, by the specific physical structures within which Parliament grew and matured into its present role — even down to the shape and size and seating arrangements of its chambers. The space is ours to shape initially, but once we have filled and shaped it, it begins to take on a life of its own, as a place that molds us in turn. One tinkers with such places only at one’s great peril, particularly when the shaping has been done by many hands over the years. not only does it rattle the bones of the dead, but it may undermine the prospects of those yet unborn, and weaken us by burying memories that deserve to live.

    He’s talking about architecture, but reading this passage, I immediately thought of the Roman Catholic liturgy, and why the destruction of the old mass was such a desolation. Reality is liturgical. That is, if you want to maintain a sense of metaphysical realism, you had best tread lightly when tempted to trample on the sacred liturgy."

  21. Teresina April 23, 2014 at 4:53 pm

    I omitted the link for that last post: http:

    //www.theamericanconservative.com/dreher/the-spirit-of-the-liturgy-architectural/

  22. Teresina April 23, 2014 at 11:27 pm

    The writer of this article asks is it time for Trent 2.  I think it is:

    What a difference to be found in two Masses

    February 20, 2014

     

    Foolishly I read only half the memo: the Oratorian’s Missa Cantata for Candlemas would not only be at 10:45, it would be at Holy Family Church in Parkdale. I discovered my mistake only at 10:40 a.m., when I was happily chatting at the back of St. Vincent de Paul on Roncesvalles.

    “You can still make it,” said my friend soothingly.

    But it was cold, I was out of change for the streetcar, my bank was a long walk in the opposite direction and I had a Polish missal with me, so I swallowed my disappointment and just went across the street to St. Casimir’s.

    I once got fired from a Catholic newspaper by writing about how odd it is to attend the Novus Ordo after months of assisting at the Extraordinary Form. But it is odd, because although it is unpopular to say so, the Novus Ordo is different from the Extraordinary Form. No matter what language it is said in, the average priest ad libs like mad. I can’t but help think of the disappointment of all the Catholics who ran away to gurus in the 1960s if their meditation sessions had been prefaced with, “Welcome! How’s it going? How ’bout those Leafs, eh?”

    That said, some priests and congregations do their best to preserve the dignity and mystery of Mass. This is particularly true in Polish communities, and in greying Edinburgh the Polish Masses offer the added bonus of so many young married couples and their babies. I noticed only one baby in Toronto’s St. Casimir’s on Candlemas. Although it was the third Mass that Sunday, the pews were completely filled and latecomers had to stand in the back. Some of the congregants had brought traditional candles to Mass with them, and the priest processed down the aisle with an asperger to bless them.

    In recognition that the Christmas season does not end until Candlemas, there were still Christmas trees behind the altar and the beautiful Nativity scene visible to our right. The hymns were heartfelt, the silences profound. And when the priest ad-libbed I was blissfully undistracted from the words of the Mass for, although I can read the Mass in Polish, spoken Polish is another story.

    St. Casimir’s lovely celebration was a contrast to the Sunday Mass I attended the next week in rural Quebec. The church had been beautiful and still had lovely bones, but someone had decided that instead of facing east, towards the dawn that represents our Lord’s return, the congregation should turn clockwise and gather on three sides around a new altar on a platform, facing Florida. The tabernacle was nowhere to be seen — a difficulty for people who want to genuflect to God Himself, not the man-made altar.

    “They have taken away my Lord and I do not know where they have laid Him,” I said to my host, and began a search. I found Him at last in what used to be the baptistry.

    The youngest person in the church was 41, but the choir and congregation sang with youthful vigour. The priest cracked several jokes, and the congregation laughed heartily. I lost my place in the missal several times. I was well and truly disconbobulated. Indeed, I was so confused that when we reached the consecration, for the first time in my life, I was not sure the Mass I was hearing was valid. That said, I am not sure it wasn’t. Is the consecration still valid if it is sung by priest and people in a call-answer format? What if the priest sings part and the people sing part? How many liberties can be taken with the words and rubrics of the Mass before Mass isn’t Mass any more?

    “I am not asking to make trouble,” I said to my host. “I am not going to contact him or do anything with this information. But who is your bishop?”

    My host was stumped.

    “I don’t know,” he admitted. “We never pray for him.”

    One of the solutions of the Council of Trent (1545-1563) to Reformers’ critiques was uniformity within a rite. Trent allowed for several rites, not just the Roman, as long as they were of ancient use. However, Trent admitted that liturgical abuses within the rites were widespread, with priests omitting important prayers and adding unfitting new ones. In addition, local changes to the text of the Mass led to serious distortions. Trent took steps to correct this.

    Given the continuing abuse of the vulnerable Novus Ordo, is it time for Trent II?"

    http://www.catholicregister.org/opinion/item/17660-what-a-difference-to-be-found-in-two-masses

  23. Teresina April 24, 2014 at 12:03 am

    A beautiful reflection by Cardinal Burke on Vatican Radio about how Easter is celebrated in Rome.

    Cardinal Burke says:  "It is also a reflection for us on His divinity because if we can only begin to imagine how any human being would have suffered in that situation seeing what was lying ahead, in terms of His passion and death.  That is only indescribably increased if we reflect on the fact that this is a divine person whose sensivitities, whose goodness and justice is perfect.  We can hardly imagine how much more intense the suffering was for Him.  So I think … it helps us to medidate on His humanity.  We see that He truly is in agony to the extent that he's perspiring blood.  But we ought also to meditate on the fact that the person suffering here is God the Son."

    Cardinal Burke also mentions how the Blessed Sacrament is reserved in several Churches in Rome after the Mass of the Last Supper (a tradition that takes place in a number of parishes in Hamilton).  Cardinal Burke says:  "On Holy Thursday night after the Mass of the Last Supper … those hosts are reposed … in a side altar, an altar of repose as we call it.  That altar, in order to pay honour to the great mystery of the Holy Eucharist, which we call the Mystery of Faith, the mystery — the Holy Eucharist which contains the whole good of our salvation, namely, Our Lord Himself, those altars are decorated in the most beautiful way possible with so many wonderful flowers and so forth.  So many people on Holy Thursday evening make visits to the Blessed Sacrament in various churches and are very much inspired in their Eucharistic Faith and deepened in their Eucharistic Faith by all that beauty that is created, yes, a dim reflection but, nevertheless, a true reflection of the infinite beauty of Christ's love for us in the Blessed Eucharist".

    The audio for the full interview is at the bottom-right of the link:

    http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2014/04/16/cardinal_burke_reflects_on_easter_in_rome/en1-791416

     

  24. Teresina April 24, 2014 at 12:07 am

    A beautiful reflection by Cardinal Burke on Vatican Radio about how Easter is celebrated in Rome.

    Cardinal Burke says:  "It is also a reflection for us on His divinity because if we can only begin to imagine how any human being would have suffered in that situation seeing what was lying ahead, in terms of His passion and death.  That is only indescribably increased if we reflect on the fact that this is a divine person whose sensitivities, whose goodness and justice is perfect.  We can hardly imagine how much more intense the suffering was for Him.  So I think … it helps us to mediate on His humanity.  We see that He truly is in agony to the extent that he's perspiring blood.  But we ought also to meditate on the fact that the person suffering here is God the Son."

    Cardinal Burke also mentions how the Blessed Sacrament is reserved in several Churches in Rome after the Mass of the Last Supper (a tradition that takes place in a number of parishes in Hamilton).  Cardinal Burke says:  "On Holy Thursday night after the Mass of the Last Supper … those hosts are reposed … in a side altar, an altar of repose as we call it.  That altar, in order to pay honour to the great mystery of the Holy Eucharist, which we call the Mystery of Faith, the mystery — the Holy Eucharist which contains the whole good of our salvation, namely, Our Lord Himself, those altars are decorated in the most beautiful way possible with so many wonderful flowers and so forth.  So many people on Holy Thursday evening make visits to the Blessed Sacrament in various churches and are very much inspired in their Eucharistic Faith and deepened in their Eucharistic Faith by all that beauty that is created, yes, a dim reflection but, nevertheless, a true reflection of the infinite beauty of Christ's love for us in the Blessed Eucharist".

    The audio for the full interview is at the bottom-right of the link:

    http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2014/04/16/cardinal_burke_reflects_on_easter_in_rome/en1-791416

  25. Rubyshine April 24, 2014 at 1:38 pm

    I've been wondering how many priests in the Hamilton diocese are capable of saying a Latin mass.

    I have absolutely no idea if it's something that takes months of training, or if it's reasonably quick to learn if someone is interested.

    I also don't know if it's just one priests who says the Wednesday night mass, or if there's a few who swap in and out.

    It just suddenly occurred to me that as much as we lament the poor availability in Hamilton, and there seems to be a sense of the Bishop being difficult, that perhaps there's a lack of capable priests in this area.

    Obviously such a lack is not an insurmountable obstacle, but it did make me curious.

  26. Don the Kiwi April 24, 2014 at 2:53 pm

    hi rubyshine.

    There are at least 3 priests in the Hamilton dioces who say the Latin Mass. Fr.Robert Sharplin, Whakatane, Fr. Gerard Boyce, Melville, and Fr. Aidan Mulholland, Taumarunui. Priests need to know Latin, which could be learned adequately and with concerted study, in about 12 months. The rubrics are very specific and strict – no messing about with words nd actions as has happened with the Novus Ordo.

    Despite the urging of our popes over the past couple of decades, our bishops have been slow to allow it, and have actively discouraged – if not supprerssed – the Latin Mass, much to the annoyance of many of the faithfull over the years. In parts of the US and Europe, it has always been available.

  27. banter April 24, 2014 at 3:15 pm

    This is a very interesting trio of priests Don.  They are all young or youngish.  Given that the bulk of the priests in the Hamilton diocese are elderly or becoming elderly – hence the need for that contentious pastoral plan – there must a large number of priests who were formed prior to the changes of Vatican II.  Therefore most of them must be able to say a Latin Mass.  Is my thinking right here?  What about Father Graeme Alexander for instance? What about the Bishop himself?.  I would suggest that if you were a priest and had said the Latin mass every day for even 5 years you would never really forget it.

    So Rubyshine I conclude that there is no lack of capability or training, there is a lack of the will to do so

  28. Teresina April 24, 2014 at 4:06 pm

    Don the Kiwi and Banter, I totally agree.  Hamilton is better off than most diocese for priests specifically trained in recent years to say the Tridentine Mass but the Bishop has steadfastly refused permission for a Sunday Latin Mass – despite the fact he has been requested to do so by the Ecclesia Dei Commission in Rome.

    However, many of the older priests (excluding Fr Joe Stack) are not in favour of the Tridentine Mass because they are products of the 1970s generation of priests who favoured more lay involvement - particularly women.  In fact I was told that some of those priests "cancelled" Sunday Mass at times and told the lay people they should go to the local Protestant churches.  There were priestless Sundays in the Hamilton Diocese at least once a year.  They favoured small community gatherings and there were many liturgical abuses.  It is not surprising that so many are against the Novus Ordo Mass because of this.  Also there is a difference in that generation of priests many of whom were laid back types (who spent their time on the golf course) and rules and rubrics were of no interest to them, so they would have little time for the Tridentine Mass which is more structured.  They would not have the patience for it I would imagine.   Also, it is not surprising that we have had very few vocations to the priesthood during the last 30 years as many of the now older priests were not in favour of an ordained priesthood but sought to promote the priesthood of the laity.  The most extreme examples of this we see in Holland I believe where people are invited up from the body of the church to "offer" Mass.  Perhaps that is what was envisaged.  Thankfully the reigns of St John Paul The Great and Benedict XVI put paid to a lot of the abuses.  

  29. Rubyshine April 24, 2014 at 4:46 pm

    Banter, I was trying to work out the maths of the age of our priests vs when they were ordained and the likelihood that they would have learnt the latin mass, but I don't know how quickly changes took effect at the close of vatican II. Also I'm only familiar with Fr Paddy Keane and Fr. Graeme Alexander in that age bracket.

    Do our priests learn any Latin as a matter of course through their study, or is it all considered obsolete?

  30. Rubyshine April 24, 2014 at 4:53 pm

    Thanks for that info Don. I'm only familiar with two of the three priests you mention, but it is interesting that it's the younger ones who have the knowledge.

  31. withhope April 26, 2014 at 6:27 pm

    He rose on Easter Sunday, and a week later, on low Sunday the traitors in Rome try to bury him again:

    http://truerestoration.blogspot.co.uk/

  32. Teresina April 26, 2014 at 10:03 pm

    Anyone who reads the life of Pope St John Paul The Great can have no doubt that he is a saint.  Aside from the two miracles attributed to him, I know two people in New Zealand who have had illnesses cured through his intercession.  One is a man who is not even Catholic who was cured when a young boy of a grave illness after he was blessed by John Paul The Great in Auckland.

    Pope St John Paul The Great's devotion to the Blessed Sacrament, Our Lady, his life long defence of the unborn and the way he stood up for life, brought the Church back from the brink and his heroic example in the face of extreme suffering in the latter years of his life to me crown him as one of the greatest saints of our times.  I have no hesitation in claiming him as my patron saint forever and always – he taught me to "Be not afraid":

     "When the Vatican's sainthood experts interviewed witnesses about the Polish pontiff, the focus of their investigation was on holiness, not achievement.
    What emerged was a spiritual portrait of Pope John Paul, one that reflected lifelong practices of prayer and devotion, a strong sense of his priestly vocation and a reliance on faith to guide his most important decisions.

    More than leadership or managerial skills, these spiritual qualities were the key to his accomplishments — both before and after his election as pope in 1978.

    From an early age, Karol Wojtyla faced hardships that tested his trust in God. His mother died when he was 9, and three years later he lost his only brother to scarlet fever. His father died when he was 20, and friends said Wojtyla knelt for 12 hours in prayer and sorrow at his bedside.

    His calling to the priesthood was not something that happened overnight. It took shape during the dramatic years of World War II, after a wide variety of other experiences: Among other things, he had acted with a theater group, split stone at a quarry, written poetry and supported a network that smuggled Jews to safety.

    Wojtyla's friends of that era always remembered his contemplative side and his habit of intense prayer. A daily Mass-goer, he cultivated a special devotion to Mary. In 1938, he began working toward a philosophy degree at the University of Krakow. A year later, the Nazi blitzkrieg of Poland left the country in ruins.

    During the German occupation, Wojtyla began attending weekly meetings called the "living rosary" led by Jan Tyranowski, a Catholic layman who soon became his spiritual mentor. Tyranowski introduced him to the 16th-century Spanish Carmelite mystic, St. John of the Cross, who would greatly influence the future pope.

    Wojtyla called Tyranowski an "apostle" and later wrote of him: "He showed us God much more immediately than any sermons or books; he proved to us that God could not only be studied, but also lived."

    At a spiritual crossroads in 1942, Wojtyla entered Krakow's clandestine theological seminary. In the pope's 1996 book, "Gift and Mystery," he remembered his joy at being called to the priesthood, but his sadness at being cut off from acquaintances and other interests. He said he always felt a debt to friends who suffered "on the great altar of history" during World War II, while he pursued his underground seminary studies.

    As a seminarian, he continued to be attracted to monastic contemplation. Twice during these years he petitioned to join the Discalced Carmelites but was said to have been turned away with the advice: "You are destined for greater things."

    He was ordained four years later, as Poland's new communist regime was enacting restrictions on the Catholic Church. After two years of study in Rome, he returned to Poland in 1948 and worked as a young pastor. From the beginning, he focused much of his attention on young people, especially university students — the beginning of a lifelong pastoral interest. Students would join him on hiking and camping trips, which always included prayer, outdoor Masses and discussions about the faith.

    Father Wojtyla earned a doctorate in moral theology and began teaching at Lublin University, at the same time publishing articles and books on ethics and other subjects. In 1958, at age 38, he was named an auxiliary bishop of Poland, becoming the youngest bishop in Poland's history. He became archbishop of Krakow in 1964, and played a key role in the Second Vatican Council, helping to draft texts on religious liberty and the church in the modern world.

    After Pope John Paul I was elected in the first conclave of 1978, Cardinal Karol Wojtyla said in a sermon in Poland that the papacy, "although it is a great office, is also a very great cross."

    He said of the new pope: "He took up the cross of contemporary man … of all the tensions and dangers which arise from various injustices: the violation of human rights, the enslavement of nations, new forms of colonial exploitation … wrongs which can be righted only in the spirit of Christ's cross."

    A few weeks later, Pope John Paul I was dead, and the "cross" of the papacy fell to Cardinal Karol Wojtyla.

    Early in his pontificate, on May 13, 1981 — the feast of Our Lady of Fatima — the Polish pope experienced a brush with death that intensified his already strong devotion to Mary. Mehmet Ali Agca, a Turk who had previously threatened the pope, shot and seriously wounded the pontiff in St. Peter's Square. The pope's life hung in the balance, and his recovery was slow. He credited Mary with saving him, and he later traveled to the Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima in Portugal, where he placed a bullet fragment removed from his body in the crown of a statue of Mary.

    Years later, the pope published the "third secret" of Fatima, which described a period of suffering for the church and the shooting of a bishop in white — a figure the pope believed was linked to the attempt on his life.

    Pope John Paul's private prayer life was intense, and visitors who attended his morning Mass described him as immersed in an almost mystical form of meditation. He prayed the liturgy of the hours, he withdrew for hours of silent contemplation and eucharistic adoration, and he said the rosary often — eventually adding five new luminous mysteries to this traditional form of prayer.

    The pope also took penitential practices seriously. In a book published after his death, the postulator or his sainthood cause, Msgr. Slawomir Oder, said Pope John Paul spent entire nights lying with his arms outstretched on the bare floor, fasted before ordaining priests or bishops and flagellated himself with a belt.

    Throughout his life, Pope John Paul was a devotee of the Divine Mercy movement, which was founded in the early 1900s by a Polish nun from Krakow, Sister Faustina Kowalska. Her special devotion to the divine mercy of God was a theme the pope himself took up in his 1980 encyclical "Dives in Misericordia" ("Rich in Mercy").

    The pope beatified Sister Faustina in 1993 and canonized her in 2000, proclaiming the second Sunday of Easter as Mercy Sunday throughout the world. Pope John Paul's death in 2005 came on the eve of Mercy Sunday, and his beatification May 1 will be celebrated on Mercy Sunday.

    Pope John Paul canonized 482 people, more than all his predecessors combined. Although the Vatican was sometimes humorously referred to as a "saint factory" under Pope John Paul, the pope was making a very serious effort to underline what he called the "universal call to holiness" — the idea that all Christians, in all walks of life, are called to sanctity.

    "There can never be enough saints," he once remarked.

    He was convinced that God sometimes speaks to the world through simple and uneducated people. St. Faustina was one, and he also canonized St. Padre Pio, the Italian mystic, and St. Juan Diego, the Mexican peasant who had visions of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

    The world knows Pope John Paul largely because of his travels to 129 countries. For him, they were spiritual journeys. As he told his top advisers in 1980: "These are trips of faith and of prayer, and they always have at their heart the meditation and proclamation of the word of God, the celebration of the Eucharist and the invocation of Mary."

    Pope John Paul never forgot that he was, above all, a priest. In his later years, he said repeatedly that what kept him going was not the power of the papacy but the spiritual strength that flowed from his priestly vocation.

    He told some 300,000 young people in 1997: "With the passing of time, the most important and beautiful thing for me is that I have been a priest for more than 50 years, because every day I can celebrate Holy Mass!"

    In his final years, the suffering brought on by Parkinson's disease, arthritis and other afflictions became part of the pope's spiritual pilgrimage, demonstrating in an unusually public way his willingness to embrace the cross."

    Deo gratias for this great and good man through whom the world became a better place for a short while.

  33. Teresina April 26, 2014 at 10:26 pm

    An article explains that being holy is not being perfect.  We do well to remember the following as regards some of the saints:

    "Even pious biographies of St. Augustine mention his dissolute early years, his living with a concubine and fathering a child out of wedlock. ("Lord, give me chastity," he prayed, "but not yet.") According to Butler's Lives of the Saints, the standard reference manual, the party-hearty young Francis of Assisi spent his father's money "lavishly, even ostentatiously." And St. Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits, may be the only saint with a notarized police record, for nighttime brawling with intent to inflict serious harm.

    But even after their decisions to amend their lives, the saints remained stubbornly imperfect. In other words: human. And the history of sinful saints begins right at the start of Christianity. St. Peter, traditionally described as the "first pope," denied knowing Jesus three times before the Crucifixion. As the priest in the film Moonstruck says, "That's a pretty big sin."

    http://www.slate.com/articles/life/faithbased/2007/04/saintly_bad_behavior.html

    If any of us could live the life of prayer with a fraction of the spirituality of Pope St John Paul The Great we would be achieving something good in life.

  34. withhope April 27, 2014 at 6:53 pm

    JPII denied supersessionism, and denied that the Church is necessary, therefore, for salvation:

    Cardinal Oddi voiced public disapproval of the Assisi outrage:

    “On that day … I walked through Assisi … And I saw real profanations in some places of prayer. I saw Buddhists dancing around the altar upon which they placed Buddha in the place of Christ and then incensed it and showed it reverence. A Benedictine protested and the police took him away … There was obvious confusion in the faces of the Catholics who were assisting at the ceremony…the pope [JPII} urged his Cardinals to continue on the same new path, “Keep always alive the spirit of Assisi as a motive of hope for the future."

    Saint Peter, the first Pope, directed his words to pious Jews who had traveled from various parts of the world to attend the religious feasts at Jerusalem. Nonetheless, Saint Peter told these well-meaning Jews that the religion of the Old Covenant would not save them, but they must enter the New Covenant forged by the Blood of Jesus Christ, the Catholic Church.

     

     

    http://www.cfnews.org/page88/files/23c084e12ee20834e0af851323dfc055-220.html

     

    while JPII never denied the Holy Trinity, he most certainly was an advocate for those who do.

    “Who is the liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ. He is Antichrist who denies the Father and the Son.” (1 John 2: 22)

     

     

  35. withhope April 27, 2014 at 7:07 pm

    p.s. i have laboured under the idea for a while that Catholicism is reasonable. there is nothing reasonable about 'canonizing' a pope that presided over the worst scandal in the Church, possibly ever, and which has still fully to come to light, and when it does, what will happen? and a pope who was disciplined under Pius the XII for his dodginess, and yet the cause for Pius XII is on hold. the 'church' is mutating. it is something other than it was. this attempt  at canonizing the most lax pope in recent history and the most revolutionary (anti-Catholic idea) (John XXIII) is unreasonable and fights against authentic faith.

  36. Teresina April 27, 2014 at 11:03 pm

    Withhope, while I agree with much of what you say.  I totally disagree on your points about Pope St John Paul The Great.  He was a very holy man as has been attested to by many.  Unfortunately, he has critics – mainly the liberals because of his pro life stance, stance against homosexuality, women priests and married priests among other things.  I don't know how old you are, but I can assure you that the Church was in a much worse state before the Pontificate of John Paul: devotion to the Blessed Sacrament and Our Lady was almost non-existent.  The other critics of his canonisation are those who were excommunicated during his pontificate and blame the John Paul for that.  The thing is Archbishop Leferbre incurred automatic excommunication for ordaining bishops without the permission of the Pope, an act which in itself broke with tradition.  Also breaking with tradition only two bishops consecrated Archbishop Leferbre and de Castro Mayer.  Therefore, there is even doubt cast over any legitimacy of those ordinations anyway.  It's really a case of the pot calling the kettle black.   

  37. Teresina April 27, 2014 at 11:24 pm

    I assure you,Withhope, that one day you will realise what a great saint John Paul is.  Personally, after reading several books on his life – miracles surrounded him throughout his life – I would be in fear and trembling to condemn him the way John Vennari has:

    "The Secret Life of John Paul II:

    It was then that I witnessed for the first time something I will truly never forget, and that—overcoming my reservations—I am telling here for the first time. I seek to do so accurately and with purity of heart. His head was bowed and he was absorbed in prayer, totally immobile, without even the slightest movement. He was in a sort of trance—or I dare say, ecstasy—which he was modestly hiding from us. In fact, I couldn’t see his face or even tell whether his hands were folded or not. Nor if his eyes were open or closed. Instead, I had the very clear sensation that I was observing someone endowed with a spiritual power that was no longer human; someone who no longer belonged to this world, but was living those minutes in complete communion with God, with the saints, and with all the souls of heaven. The unreal sparkle of the snow all around emphasized this impression. A complete silence had descended. Everything was motionless, as if a state of contemplation had taken hold of every element of nature. . . . He never moved so much as a millimeter, his muscles were motionless like everything else around him. Then, the strangest thing occurred. The Pope, after [the] tiniest imperceptible movement, revived and then slowly got up, and when we looked at our watches, realized that almost an hour had gone by. "

    Such episodes of deep prayer were commonplace, according to those who spent time with the Holy Father. In 1995, when John Paul visited the Sacred Heart Cathedral (now Basilica) in Newark, he made a visit to the Blessed Sacrament before departing. When he knelt at the priedieu, Cardinal McCarrick remembered:

    It was my hope, my intention to kneel a little behind him. I couldn’t. I couldn’t. As soon as he knelt, it was like a sacred space, like a tent was around him, and I moved away. I moved three or four yards back and stood by one of the stone pillars of the cathedral. Because you had to leave space there. . . . He went into the deepest prayer. . . . I’ve rarely seen anyone in that state of such deep prayerfulness. He wasn’t with us any more. He was with the Lord. He knelt and then in ten seconds he was gone. It was so holy, I moved back. And he was there, for about maybe seven or eight minutes, lost in total prayer. 

    Then, Monsignor Dziwisz took his elbow and he gently got up, turned around with a great smile, waved to the people, and walked on. 

    Cardinal Justin Rigali recalled a similar incident that took place in Canada when the Pope was kneeling in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament, prior to the beginning of a ceremony. The master of ceremonies decided it was time for the Holy Father to wrap it up and suddenly said, "The Pope will now rise . . ." Rigali recalled what happened next:

    Well, the Pope didn’t rise. He just stayed put. And the poor man [the master of ceremonies], whatever got into him, it went from bad to worse: So he waited a couple of minutes, and then he made the second announcement: "The Pope will now rise." Incredible. And the Pope didn’t rise. So then he just knelt down and stayed quiet. When the Pope was ready, then he rose and went on. 

    Sometimes when John Paul emerged from such interludes of deep prayer, he didn’t seem refreshed, but was instead preoccupied and burdened with the weight of information that others were not privy to. On one such occasion in the wilderness, a witness reported that he appeared to be "shaken to the core" and immediately requested that he descend from the mountain to return to his lodging. Within hours, the Iraqi army invaded Kuwait, and the Gulf War began. 

     

    John Paul’s extravagant love for Christ in the Eucharist sometimes became problematic for his handlers. In fact, the prefect of the Papal Household often warned the organizers of papal events to make sure not to allow the Pope to pass within view of a place where the Eucharist was reserved. Otherwise, he’d surely enter the chapel for prolonged periods of time and the entire schedule would be thrown off. 

    In 1995, Father Michael White was invited to organize the Pope’s visit to Baltimore on behalf of the archdiocese. Prior to the Holy Father’s arrival, the chief organizer for papal pilgrimages, Father Roberto Tucci, SJ, came to Maryland to scout out the venues and make the necessary arrangements for John Paul’s trip. When he arrived at the archbishop’s residence, he noticed that one of the doors in the hallway the Pope would pass through opened into a chapel with the Blessed Sacrament. 

    He instructed Father White, "Keep that door closed so he doesn’t know there’s a chapel in there." Upon the Pope’s arrival, the door was closed, and John Paul took some time to eat and rest at the residence. When it was time to leave, he walked down the hall, which was lined with doors leading into various rooms, passed by the door of the chapel, then suddenly stopped. He looked back at the door, then looked over at Father Tucci, and without saying a word, wagged his finger at him and shook his head. Father White recalled:

    He’s never been in this place before, never set eyes on the place, and there was nothing about the door that distinguished it in any way as a chapel. It was just one more door in a corridor of doors. But he turned right back around, he opened that door up, and he went into the chapel and he prayed. 

    According to Father White, the Holy Father remained in prayer long enough to "do some damage" to the schedule, then left the residence to head to his appointment. The Holy Father ended his visit to Baltimore at St. Mary’s Seminary in Roland Park. A helicopter was staged on the front lawn of the seminary to take him to the airport, where he was to meet with the vice president of the United States. A crowd of enthusiastic future priests gathered on the steps to wave at the Pope when he arrived, but John Paul’s handlers were clear about the schedule: There was no time for him to make a visit. The seminary had been begging for months to be included in the Holy Father’s schedule, but time would not allow it. 

    However, after seeing the young men, John Paul pulled Father Tucci aside and informed him in Italian that he wanted to see the seminary—much to the amazement of that community when they were hurriedly informed. Once there, Father White was astonished that the Pope instinctively knew where to go:

    He walked in the door, and this was completely unplanned and unscripted at this point. The Secret Service hadn’t even done a complete sweep of the building because this wasn’t part of the deal. And he just walked into that building and walked right to the chapel, like he knew where it was. It was just remarkable. "

    http://www.catholicworldreport.com/Item/3079/john_paul_ii_and_the_blessed_sacrament.aspx

  38. withhope April 27, 2014 at 11:26 pm

    until today only 7 popes had been canonized in 1000 years. Now,  2 post conciliar popes, and at the end of the year a third. Do I think these canonizations have more to do with rendering to ceasar than God, yep. Do I believe that the popes who have brought scandal and ruin upon the Church of Christ should be raised to the altars before Pius IX, Pius XI, and Pius XII. No. But then, these days one can insult Christ and eschew doctrine and dogma as defined without ambiguity by the Church for centuries with greater impunity than one can when calling into question the 'Christliness' of the post-conciliar popes and the revolution they have promulgated. but, done is done.

  39. withhope April 27, 2014 at 11:32 pm

    p.s.  I've read  quite a lot of jpii biography from both camps. the camp that is unimpressed with the pope who used catholic dosh to build an indoor swimming pool at Castle Gandolfo as soon as he was elected and to keep up his skiing vacations, and hiking trips, not to mention constant around the world adventure to promote false religions, even after he had recovered from the bullet. The pope who refused to be a leader when it came to disciplining the most appalling prelates, yet 'led' when it came to causing previously unheard of scandal in the Church. I also remember the time he tried to perform an exorcism. He failed. I won't go on. Whether or not he's in heaven isn't the issue. The canonizations are wrong. I can no longer be unconvinced of this.  call it invincible ignorance.

  40. Teresina April 27, 2014 at 11:36 pm

    The following also shows the lie that that Pope St John Paul The Great said the Church was not necessary for salvation:

    Pope John Paul II:

    "The mystery of salvation is revealed to us and is continued and accomplished in the Church…and from this genuine and single source, like 'humble, useful, precious and chaste' water, it reaches the whole world. Dear young people and members of the faithful, like Brother Francis we have to be conscious and absorb this fundamental and revealed truth, consecrated by tradition: 'There is no salvation outside the Church.' From her alone there flows surely and fully the life-giving force destined in Christ and in His Spirit, to renew the whole of humanity, and therefore directing every human being to become a part of the Mystical Body of Christ." (Pope John Paul II, Radio Message for Franciscan Vigil in St. Peter's and Assisi, October 3, 1981, L'Osservatore Romano, October 12, 1981.)

  41. Teresina April 27, 2014 at 11:41 pm

    Those who put forward the building of a swimming pool as a reason for St John Paul The Great not being canonised are surely clutching at straws.  

  42. Teresina April 27, 2014 at 11:46 pm

    Most of those who are writing such things, Withhope, are not even in the Church and probably never will be.  They seem to me to be the other side of the coin of liberalism and in their condemnation of Pope St John Paul The Great they are in fact holding hands with the liberals.  That says a lot to me.  

  43. Teresina April 27, 2014 at 11:59 pm

    Pope St John Paul The Great needs no defending because his holy life attests to his sainthood.  I will always be eternally grateful to God for the Pontificate of Pope St John Paul the Great for  his life of holiness and for rebuilding the Church as stated below.  The naysayers are liberals and those who call themselves traditionalists but in reality are not because they promote a man who himself broke with tradition by going against the authority of the Pope – as bad or worse than anything the liberals have ever done:

    "If you doubt me when I say that Pope John Paul made it possible for many to become Catholics, who had held back despite their own perception of the deep attractions of the Catholic tradition, consider the case of Malcolm Muggeridge. In Something Beautiful for God, he gives an explanation of why he resisted becoming a Catholic, despite even the urging of Mother Teresa that he should. He pointed to the circumstance “…that the Church, for inscrutable reasons of its own, has decided to have a reformation just when the previous one – Luther’s – is finally running into the sand.

    “I make no judgment”, he continues, “about something which, as a non-member, is no concern of mine; but if I were a member, then I should be forced to say that, in my opinion, if men were to be stationed at the doors of churches with whips to drive worshippers away, or inside the religious orders specifically to discourage vocations, or among the clergy to spread alarm and despondency, they could not hope to be as effective in achieving these ends as are trends and policies seemingly now dominant within the Church”.

    “Feeling so”, he continued, “it would be preposterous to seek admission, more particularly as, if the ecumenical course is fully run, luminaries of the Church to which I nominally belong, like the former Bishop of Woolwich, for whom – putting it mildly – I have little regard, will in due course take their place in the Roman Catholic hierarchy among the heirs of St Peter.”

    But then, Karol Wojtyla became pope. Of what happened then I have written in my piece in today’s paper: and as a result of it all, and within a very few years, Muggeridge became a Catholic at last. So did many others, including, as I have said, myself.

    That is why I was elated at the original announcements, first of his beatification and then of the canonisation which will take place on Sunday: because of his re-establishment of the simple fact of the Church’s mandate to declare the objective truth of Catholic doctrine, I had been enabled at last to come home, to make my escape finally from a Church which requires of its clergy (I remember it vividly from my own ordination) no more than a formal acceptance of the creeds – not as declarations of beliefs held to be actually true, but as what the C of E sanctimoniously called part of a “heritage of faith”. That is why I was at first so depressed by the hostility in some quarters, even within the Church, to the announcement of John Paul’s beatification.

    Simply remember.

    We have short memories; we take our recent history too easily for granted. Few people, it seems – at least among those—and they still exist—who imply that the problems we still face as a Church were actually Pope John Paul’s fault, remember the forlorn state of the Catholic Church at the end of the reign of the unhappy Pope Paul VI, during which forces of disintegration were unleashed within the Church which brought it to the edge of losing all credibility as a defender of basic Christian orthodoxy.

    Some traditionalists look back and say that that was because Pope Paul was himself a liberal Pope; but that is simply nonsense: this was after all the Pope of Humanae Vitae, the Pope who both promulgated it and then tenaciously defended it. We remember Pope John Paul’s great courage; but Pope Paul, too, was immensely courageous. It was, however, simply beyond his strength to drive “the smoke of Satan” from the sanctuary: That immense task was the greatest achievement (among many) of Pope John Paul II — the pontiff I shall with huge personal gratitude be able think of, after Sunday’s canonisation, as “Saint John Paul the Great”."

  44. Teresina April 28, 2014 at 5:03 pm

    An interesting comment from Rarote Caeli about the infallibility of canonisations:

    "The canonization ceremony of October 21, 2012 saw the introduction of a revised rite that was very similar to the one used prior to Pius XII. Rorate noted this reform on that very same day. This rite will be used today, although the Te Deum will be replaced with a shorter hymn (Iubilate Deo, Cantate Domino).

    This reform attracted little attention; the ephemeral restoration of the fanon got far more media space. This does not change the fact that the new rite of canonization may well go down as one of Pope Benedict XVI's more far-reaching reforms, not least because it includes the following petition (the third one), addressed to the Pope just before he proclaims the actual formula of canonization:

    Most Holy Father, Holy Church, trusting in the Lord's promise to send upon her the Spirit of Truth, who in every age keeps the Supreme Magisterium free from error, most earnestly beseeches Your Holiness to enroll these, her elect, among the saints.

    Prior to the third petition, in his response to the second petition, the Pope says:

     

    Let us, then, invoke the Holy Spirit, the Giver of life, that he may enlighten our minds and that Christ the Lord may not permit his Church to err in a matter of such importance

    (Emphases ours).

    These two formulae, or any formula more or less explicitly saying the same things, were present neither in the post-1969 rite of canonization, nor (to our knowledge) in the rites of canonization prior to the main liturgical reforms of the 1960's. Anyone can see the significance of these little formulae to the continuing question of the infallibility of canonizations — the act of canonization is now explicitly included in the immunity of the Supreme Magisterium from error. 

    Some will protest that these words do not amount to an Apostolic Constitution, or a dogmatic tome, or an infallible decree spoken by the mouth of the Holy Father himself. Fair enough; but they are part of the liturgy of canonization, these words "put into context", so to speak, the formula of canonization that the Pope is about to pronounce. One can even say that these remind him of the extent of his authority just before he exercises it. These two formulae therefore cannot be lightly dismissed, and any future critique of the canonizations of John XXIII and John Paul II will have to take these into account. "

  45. Originz April 30, 2014 at 4:34 pm

    There seems to be a huge disconnect in comments on this site.

    On the one hand the well-known and lamentable abuses in the Novus Ordo liturgy are decried, while the Mass of All Time is applauded, as it should be.  Yet the popes who ushered in and presided over the decades of self-destruction in the Church are lauded and their canonisations (in which I include that of Pope Paul VI, expected later this year) are enthusiastically received!

    How is this consistent?  Pope John Paul II sat through, condoned, and applauded far worse liturgical abuses than we ever see here in New Zealand.  He toured the world promoting, not the gospel of the Bible and the crucified Christ, God who became Man, but the gnostic gospel of the Risen Christ, a man who became God.

    Pope Paul VI was the very one who implemented the Novus Ordo and tried to consign the Mass of All Time to the dustbin of history.  He spoke at the UN, yes, but in order to preach and endorse the Cult of Man, not the Gospel of Christ; human rights, not God’s rights.  Yes, he SAID that Vatican II was a pastoral council, not a dogmatic one, and that no new doctrine was taught.  But then he (followed by John Paul II) proceeded to allow speculative “pastoral” themes to effectively become Catholic doctrine:  indifferentism, false ecumenism, truth in false religions, freedom of religion, episcopal collegiality, etc, etc.

    Pope Paul VI was the one to throw out Pope Pius X’s Pascendi Gregis, Lamentabili Sane, and the Oath Against Modernism (Sacrorum antistitum).  O fateful day!  Imagine what a different world we would be in today if this oath still had to be taken by all clergy, pastors, confessors, preachers, religious superiors and professors in philosophical-religious seminaries, and that they were held to it.

    If only he, and his successors, had kept his OWN oath of office, in which he vowed to: “change nothing of the received Tradition, and nothing thereof I have found before me guarded by my God-pleasing predecessors, to encroach upon, to alter, or to permit any innovation therein.”

    By canonising these popes, Francis is effectively canonising Vatican II, since these popes are inextricably identified with the Council and its consequences/aftermath.  Why did the popes ignore the deleterious effects?  From Pope Paul VI saying that “From some fissure the smoke of Satan has entered the temple of God”, to Pope Benedict XVI (when a cardinal) lamenting over “How much filth there is in the Church”, the popes have not been unaware of the consequences of their actions.  Why have they not acted to “cleanse all that is in contradiction to the canonical order, should such appear” (also from Paul VI’s oath of office)?

    It is not that they do not have the power, or the God-given right.  Unfortunately, I think it is because they are not masters of their own destiny, let alone ours.  They have other masters…

    But by not even trying to act to save the faithful, even if it could mean martyrdom, and by arguably making specific culpable acts to the contrary, they forfeit any claim to sanctity.

  46. Teresina May 1, 2014 at 1:01 pm

    Originz, I don't know very much about Pope John 23rd as regards his sanctity or otherwise (although some people have told me his book Journal of a Soul influenced them to become Catholic)  but I have read much about the sanctity of Pope St John Paul The Great and it astounds me that traditional sites who have condemned his canonisation completely overlook this, as are you because I have posted some points above.  What do they overlook: they overlook all that he did to improve the situation in the Church, they overlook his devotion to the Blessed Sacrament, they overlook his devotion to Mary.

    Why?  I believe it is simply because Archbishop Le Lefebvre was automatically excommunicated during his pontificate.  He was excommunicated for doing something totally untraditional which was ordaining bishops without the Pope's permission.  Not only that but only two bishops officiated at the consecration of these bishops when three were required, also without the permission of the Pope.  He incurred automatic excommunication under Canon Law and he knew this but went ahead anyway and died excommunicated.  One can only wonder if he was under pressure from within to go ahead with the consecrations.  Certainly we know Williamson was a bad choice.  Therefore, I think that even casts validity on the ordination of priests if the consecrations of the bishops were so flawed.  Interestingly, under the pre-conciliar Church the sacraments of the SSPX would be considered  invalid.  The post-conciliar Church says they are valid – so which do you choose?  To me, while I have sympathy with a lot of what they say about the documents of Vatican II, there is a huge doubt over them all together and I do not think unfortunately they will ever be reconciled with the Church.

    So I find it is out of malice that these so-called traditionalists complain about the canonisation of John Paul and ignore his suffering, his life-long commitment to the pro-life movement and his sanctity.  Rorate Caeli also has a post where they say that the changes to the order of canonisation made by Benedict XVI mean that the canonisations themselves are infallible and that people commenting on them need to bear that in mind.

     

  47. Teresina May 1, 2014 at 1:08 pm

    My post above should have read:

    Therefore, I think that even casts doubt on the validity of the ordination of their priests if the consecrations of the bishops were so flawed.  Interestingly, under the pre-conciliar Church the sacraments of the SSPX would be considered  invalid.

    What is interesting is that the SSPX have recourse to the post-concilar Church for the validity of their sacraments when under the pre-concilar Church their orders, and therefore the Mass offered by their priests and other sacraments, would be invalid.

    So the accusation you fire at others also applies to the SSPX and those who support them.  Their whole existence goes solidly against tradition whatever way you look at it … and outside the Church there is no salvation.

  48. Vatican2Survivor May 1, 2014 at 4:01 pm

    Teresina

    There is solidarity between Originz comments and others who are not followers specifically of Pius XTH–who nonetheless could have made the same comments he has just done, and your own comments unravel the more we look at the whole history of the mentalities held by Catholics before the Vatican council2. Originz comments fit perfectly with that history–so your  Archie Bunker like comments are irrelevant and do not really actually engage what he is saying.

  49. Teresina May 1, 2014 at 8:48 pm

    Vatican2Survivor,  if you look at your comments, you will find you are not engaging with what I am saying and in fact your comments are rude and irrelevant.

  50. Benedicta May 1, 2014 at 8:53 pm

    Teresina is certainly not commenting like Archie Bunker….

    We are very blessed with our Popes….who would anyone else prefer Alexander VI?

  51. Teresina May 1, 2014 at 8:57 pm

    Oringinz, you say Pope St John Paul the Great, "toured the world promoting, not the gospel of the Bible and the crucified Christ, God who became Man, but the gnostic gospel of the Risen Christ, a man who became God".  Would you like to proffer some examples of how he did this?

  52. Teresina May 1, 2014 at 9:07 pm

    Thank you, Benedicta.  I find it incredible (as others have mentioned about the comments on some traditional sites) that all Pope St John Paul The Great's holiness, his untiring promotion of the Blessed Sacrament, Our Lady, the unborn, is completely overlooked by some "traditionalists" who have become very bitter and twisted and in reality are doing nothing to restore the Church by remaining on the outside.  

  53. bamac May 1, 2014 at 9:21 pm

    The link below shows how one very unfortunate change was brought about in the church … a change that had nothing to do with any of the Popes as you seem to feel Originz ( or have I taken you up wrongly )  , in fact they tried to stop its spread as we are shown in the interview.

       The pertinent interview is the first part of the video … Hope that others found it as interesting as I did … some have alredy seen I feel sure.

    http://www.churchmilitant.tv/fullpreview/?vidID=micd-2014-04-30

    Mrs Mac

  54. Teresina May 2, 2014 at 12:25 am

    Thanks, Mrs Mac, that explains a lot!

    You might enjoy this which shows there's still a lot of life in the Church and growing vocations – this time the Dominicans!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6MtJOYI6tew&feature=player_embedded

    http://blog.reginamag.com/dominican-moment/

  55. Originz May 2, 2014 at 12:48 am

    Teresina, I will come back to address your questions above, but I must immediately note another huge inconsistency.  You just stated approvingly the traditional doctrine of “no salvation outside the Church”, yet this was severely undermined by Vatican II, then it was allowed to be taught against by numerous theologians, without the popes intervening and clearing the issue up, and now we have Pope Francis putting Jews off limits for evangelisation, and raising the possibility of atheists going to heaven.  The new VII concept of “dialogue” with other faiths has led to interminable inter-faith conferences completely bereft of any attempt to bring the others to the truth.  The great saints who laboured to convert Jews (St Vincent Ferrer) and Muslims (St Frances no less) would be horrified.

    Ralph Martin (a consultor to the Pontifical Council for the New Evangelization) wrote a 336 page book (Will Many Be Saved?: What Vatican II Actually Teaches and Its Implications for the New Evangelization, 2012) in order to explain the true meaning of just one part of one paragraph of one of the 16 Vatican II documents, using painstaking references to the established historical doctrines of the church.  The book has been endorsed by at least four cardinals and two Archbishops.  Based on that, and paraphrasing John 21:25, if the true meaning of every part of every paragraph of the Vatican II documents were to be properly explained, I suppose the world itself could not contain the books that could be written. 

    Similarly, Msgr. Bruno Gherardini’s book “The Ecumenical Vatican Council II – A Much Needed Discussion” (2009) takes 300 pages to just start to describe some of the issues with just three documents that lie within his areas of expertise (Dignitatis Humanae, Unitatis Redintegratio, and Lumen Gentium).  The Archbishop Secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments wrote the foreword to this book.  Bishop Mario Oliveri wrote in the introductory note of the importance of “the texts of the Ecumenical Vatican Council II, [being] interpreted in the light of the doctrinal heritage of the Church.”  Msgr. Gherardini’s book was essentially addressed to Pope Benedict, stressing the pressing need for authentic magisterial interpretation of each and every aspect of the Vatican II documents, informed by reference to the pronouncements of previous councils and the pre-existing body of doctrinal and dogmatic teaching (remembering that it was emphasised that Vatican II was pastoral, not doctrinal) in order (if indeed it be possible) to regain continuity between the pre- and post-conciliar churches.  That invitation was evidently ignored.

    It is abundantly clear that, due to the lack of clarity, and the seeds of confusion sown throughout the documents (intentionally or otherwise), discontinuity HAS arisen, and massive destruction within the church has resulted.  The popes have failed in their duty to ensure that the church continues in accord with what has always and at all times been held to be its own Faith and Tradition.

    Now when a company fails, the CEO has to take responsibility.  I know they sometimes get golden parachutes on the way out.  But the buck stops with them.  In our case, that should mean that we don’t canonise the popes who presided over the destruction!!  For every person (and this includes me) who was inspired by JPII’s promotion of the Blessed Sacrament, Our Lady, and the unborn there will be one (and unfortunately this includes me also) who was scandalised by his unholy interfaith meetings at Assisi, his kissing of the Koran, and his glad-handing with Talmudic Jews whose agenda is to remove Christianity from the face of the earth.

    I should note, in case I am misunderstood, that, as with Ralph Martin and Msgr. Gherardini, I am working for reform from WITHIN the Church, not casting stones from without.  And if you read carefully what the good Bishop Williamson has to say, you will find that he is too.

  56. Teresina May 2, 2014 at 1:57 am

    Originz, if you have been a regular reader of Being Frank you will have seen me quote Mons Gheradini many times and I agree with what he says.  However, he is speaking from within the Church, not like Bishop Williamson who has even been ousted from the SSPX.  Well meaning and all as these people may be they need to be fighting from within the Church, not without.

    If you have read anything about Pope St John Paul the Great you will know that he has sought to clarify some of the documents of Vatican II.  You must remember what a bad state the Church was in when he became Pope.  He has stated that  outside the Church there is no salvation, and that has been reiterated by Benedict XVI:

    'Pope John Paul II:

    "The mystery of salvation is revealed to us and is continued and accomplished in the Church…and from this genuine and single source, like 'humble, useful, precious and chaste' water, it reaches the whole world. Dear young people and members of the faithful, like Brother Francis we have to be conscious and absorb this fundamental and revealed truth, consecrated by tradition: 'There is no salvation outside the Church.' From her alone there flows surely and fully the life-giving force destined in Christ and in His Spirit, to renew the whole of humanity, and therefore directing every human being to become a part of the Mystical Body of Christ." (Pope John Paul II, Radio Message for Franciscan Vigil in St. Peter's and Assisi, October 3, 1981, L'Osservatore Romano, October 12, 1981.)"

    Those involved with the SSPX would do well to remember that there is no salvation outside the Church and they appear to have set up their own magisterium.  Anyone who goes to the SSPX I have noticed in the end seem to imbibe some kind of spirit that leads them to reject even the good in people such as Pope St  John Paul The Great, so for all their good intentions they will eventually lead people off the rails.

    I have been to their Masses a number of times but I have had to stop going because I cannot accept what is said in their sermons about the Church.  They have said that it is a "new church" that in itself means they consider they are not part of it.  Therefore, as I know the Catholic  Church (for all the errors) is not a new church, I can only conclude that in those very words the SSPX admit to being outside the Church.  Therefore, I cannot and will not their masses for the sake of my soul.  I have further read as I say above that there were only two bishops in attendance at the consecration of the four new bishops when three were required under Canon Law.  Therefore, to me that puts a cloud over the legitimacy of their ordinations: bishops and priests.  Once people go outside the Church – as with the case of Martin Luther – they are on a slippery slope which in the end they will fall off.

    Mons Gheradini, for all that he objects to some of the Council documents (as do I and think they should be put right) would not reject this great saint nor any part of the Church.  We reject reject to the errors but we cling to the barque of Peter, not Fellay and not Williamson because they cannot lead us to salvation as the Popes have traditionally stated down the centuries: outside the Church there is no salvation.

  57. Teresina May 2, 2014 at 2:15 am

    Can.  1013 No bishop is permitted to consecrate anyone a bishop unless it is first evident that there is a pontifical mandate.

    Can.  1014 Unless the Apostolic See has granted a dispensation, the principal bishop consecrator in an episcopal consecration is to be joined by at least two consecrating bishops; it is especially appropriate, however, that all the bishops present consecrate the elect together with the bishops mentioned.

    Archbishop Lefebvre explicitly ignored Canon Law and, therefore, automatically incurred excommunication and died excommunicated.  No doubt, as an old man, he was spurred on by the likes of Fellay and Williamson to do such a thing when he had in fact earlier signed a document to say he would not go against the Pope's wishes.  I believe the Church is in a sorrier state because of this action because Lefebvre ill advisedly set up his own church and many followed him taking away a large body of the faithful who could have stayed and fought against modernism within the Church as the rest of us did. So unwittingly he seems to have become a tool of the devil … perhaps that is why he died excommunicated and we should pray for his soul as I am sure he was well meaning as he said in earlier years that he had no intention of breaking with the Church.

     

  58. Teresina May 2, 2014 at 2:25 am

    Also, Originz, ironically Ralph Martin, as director of Renewal Ministries and a Charismatic, would be completely rejected by Bishop Williamson because there is no way the Charismatic movement can be considered part of traditional Catholicism.