Thursday, July 24, 2008

Truer words have never been spoken!

"We belong to the Church militant; and She is militant because on earth the powers of darkness are ever restless to encompass Her destruction." -Pius XII, AD 1953

"If you're not a thorn in somebody's side, you aren't doing Christianity right." Mother Angelica

"Ignorance is no excuse when we have neglected to learn what we are obliged to know."St. Ambrose

"The persistence of Mary about the dangers which threaten the Church is a divine warning against the suicide of altering the Faith, in Her liturgy, Her theology and Her soul." Pope Pius XII

"Who is going to save our Church? Not our bishops, not our priests and religious. It is up to you, the people. You have the minds, the eyes, the ears to save the Church. Your mission is to see that your priests act like priests, your bishops, like bishops, and your religious act like religious.” Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, before the Knights of Columbus, June of 1972.

Some Laughter....

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Bishop Athanasius, Mass 'ad orientem'

Sweet Sacrament Divine!


If only this were the case here in South Africa

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Our Lady, Queen Assumed into Heaven Patroness of South Africa


The Holy Fathers Mass in Sydney Cathedral

His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI offering the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass (Ordinary Form), in Sydney Cathedral.

Note: Traditional Vesture of the Holy Father and his Assistants
Traditional or "Benedictine" Altar arrangement

Please Consult the 'New Liturgical Movement' For more Details

Rev. Fr. A. Esposito SSPX, Offers the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass at Our Lady of Sorrows Priory, Roodepoort Johannesburg.

Again thanking God for his Traditional Priests!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Thoughts on Tradition in South Africa

Its has been a few weeks since my last personal Post, studies and home life are far more demanding. It has been quite some time now in thinking about the revival or reestablishment rather of tradition here in South Africa. In saying this, I obviously take into account that Tradition has indeed been surviving here in South Africa for quite some time, fostered and defended by the Society of St. Pius X.

It is sad yet a expected result to see the hostility that Catholics show to their own kind and the "brotherly love" that they show to open heretics and formal schismatics! There is but one True Faith, one Name by which we must all be saved - Our Lord Jesus Christ and His Church.

I must say that in my journey toward finding True faith, I thank God in his wonderful providence that he provided someone like the late Archbishop Marcel Lefevre to spearhead a movement which would lead toward the ultimate regeneration of the True faith, despite the many attacks laid against him.

I do not profess to be a scholar on the subject of tradition, yet I cannot deny that throughout my entire Novous Ordo - Post Conciliar Life, I felt a huge void in my spiritual life. Its seems understandable to me to see why so many young people leave the faith or become indifferent to it. There is nothing solid about the last 40 years of post conciliar reform, The Church of God finds herself in a crisis of faith, consequential to this and as a obvious result one finds the basic structure of the society we live in devastatingly changed.

The poison that has filtered its way into everyday life is claiming its casualties and the results of this battle are as clear as daylight. God himself, his true and eternal presence - body blood soul and divinity- is relegated to some obscure corner even within his own church! This current order of things cannot be accepted, we as the faithful must fight to keep the faith, we cannot allow for this devastation to perpetuate itself.

The situation here in South Africa is nothing different to anywhere else in the modern world that we see pervades to a large extent, the crisis itself becomes apparent considering things such as "catholic" schooling, the immense abuses which abound liturgically etc, empty churches, deserted religious houses and seminaries.

When we take a look at the traditionalist movement as a whole, we a presented with a vastly different picture thriving and fruitful Catholic schooling, a faithful adherence to the liturgical traditions of the church, churches filled to capacity not forgetting the religious houses and seminaries which are filled to capacity!

This is a simple observation, and yet one begins to draw a certain conclusion. The life and survival of the Church of Christ lies within the unbroken tradition of the Faith, handed down from generation to generation and still holds the same effect on an individual as it did with the first apostles.

We commit ourselves therefore, to bring about the Reign of the two Glorious hearts of Jesus and Mary Immaculate.

In Christ and our Good Mother

Calvin James

Thursday, July 17, 2008

The Story of Johannesburg's Cathedral of Christ the King

By Fr J E Brady OMI

"Later on we might do the beautiful and the grand and then we mean to do it right well"-these words were written sixty-five years ago by the priest, Father Aloysius Schoch O.M.I., who built the Kerk St. Pro-Cathedral to be a future Parish Hall but to serve as a Church until the building of the Cathedral proper. He hoped to realise this plan on the adjoining stands within the decade, but it is only today that the Cathedral of Christ the King has been realised on a completely new site. In a few months time Johannesburg will celebrate its seventy-fifth birthday. The Church has played an important part in the development of this metropolis and the opening and dedication of the New Cathedral of Christ the King, will be for all a vision realised, a dream come true, a promise fulfilled, a long series of sacrifices rewarded. The story of the events of the past three quarters of a century must be of interest to all, if for no other reason that they may appreciate the solid foundations laid by the pioneers and the manner in which the next generation has built upon those foundations.


While visits were made across the Vaal River in the early fifties by pioneer missionaries, Fr. Juaquin da Santa Rita Montanha (from Mozambique) and Fr. Hoenderwanger, O. Praem (from Fauresmith) our story really begins in 1870 when freedom of Catholic Worship was granted in the South African Republic, and Fr. Le Bihan O.M.I, established the first mission in Potchefstroom, the former Capital.

With the finding of gold in the Eastern Transvaal (1875) Fr. Walsh, O.M.I, came from Natal and built a small Church at Pilgrims Rest and later at Lydenburg. It was Bishop Jolivet O.M.I, of Natal who journeyed by post cart to Pretoria (1877) and dedicated the new mission in the Capital to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Almost a decade later when the diggers travelled from the Diamond Fields with the exciting news that gold had been found in Barberton and De Kaap they little realised that they were crossing over the richest gold mine in the world-the hidden goldfields of the Witwatersrand.

The following year an outcrop of gold bearing rock was found by chance at Langlaagte and in the September (1886) President Kruger declared the fields "a public digging", it was thus the mining camp was born. As the news spread prospectors came from all parts of South Africa and even from overseas to seek their fortune on the "Ridge of White Waters". As the numbers increased visits were made by the Oblate Fathers in Pretoria and in February 1887 arrangements were made to say Mass for the Catholics among the prospectors.

First Mass

A very significant entry is found in the diary of Fr. L. Trabaud, O.M.I, on February 19th. "I set out at 9.30 in the conveyance of Mr. Guerin for the Goldfields of the Witwatersrand. We were five travellers, Mr. Coleman a Jew, Mr. James-a Wesleyan Minister, a Salvation Army Officer, a young man and myself. I stayed with Mrs. Brennan who had prepared a comfortable place for me.

"February 20th. Sunday-I said the first Mass that has ever been celebrated on this plateau, open veldt up to the present. A reed hut, the Bakery of the Camp, is put at my disposal by Mr. Whelan of Bloemfontein. There were thirty-three Catholics present." The exact site of this first Mass is lost to us. But it was situated in Ferreira's Camp to the west of the present City Hall. By April there were over sixty people present when Fr. Trabaud again visited the Camp to say Mass in the house of Mr. Kennedy-to-day this site is marked by the New Magistrate's Court. The following month, Fr. Mongi-noux, the first Prefect Apostolic of the Transvaal, travelled over from Pretoria to take up residence on the Goldfields and he tells us that "the town they are building is to be called Johannesburg."

We get a good picture of prevailing conditions in the account which follows. "The beginnings of the new mission were rough and ready, the work overwhelming. One had to search among this motley crowd of diggers for those who were Catholics and then plead with them lest in the mad rush for gold they should forget their religious duties. Saturdays were particularly tiring. Where will we have Mass tomorrow? That was the question that had to be answered. We had no actual Church and we moved about, choosing some sort of spot that would be central for the miners to attend. Today, one would fix on an unfinished storeroom, next Sunday a stable and so on. Having decided on the place we had to notify the people by going the rounds of the camp."

In the light of the many Churches and our magnificent Cathedral in the city today, it is well we realise that it was only seventy-five years ago that primitive conditions prevailed.

First Church

Thanks to the generosity of the miners, Protestants as well as Catholics, Fr. Monginoux was able to buy a piece of ground and to build a small Church, with a three-roomed dwelling for the priest on one side, and a temporary Convent and School room adjoining, for the Holy Family Sisters whom he hoped to get from Natal.
Once again we are indebted to the diary written by Fr. Trabaud for the following interesting details of the first Church on the Witwatersrand, August 20-21st 1887. It reads as follows: "Fr. de Lacy, myself and Arthur Knight (the latter was a boarder at Loreto Convent School, his father was proprietor of one of the early mines on the Goldfields) set out for Johannesburg in a private vehicle about 10 a.m. We arrived at 5 p.m. We found Fr. Monginoux making the final details for the decoration of the School-Chapel which had been built on the corner of Fox and Smal Streets. The small convent which is attached to it is nearly finished. The neighbourhood is still just bare veldt, but the town is growing rapidly.

August 21st was the feast of St. Joachim, the patron of Pope Leo XIII (then reigning Pontiff). As the mission began on February 20th the anniversary of the election of His Holiness, Fr. Monginoux gave the name of St Leo, as the second patron. The ceremony of Blessing the new Church began at 11 a.m. and ended at 2 o'clock. We dined at the home of Messrs. J. and W. Quinn." Within the next week Fr. S. Hammer O.M.I, arrived from Kimberley to be Parish Priest.

Second Church

Within five years these buildings were quite inadequate and a large Church and presbytery were built on the diagonally opposite corner-Main and Von Weilligh Streets. These buildings were standing until three years ago. Meanwhile the former first Church provided accommodation for the ever increasing number of school children.
In 1895 the Holy Family Sisters acquired a former Club and adjoining ground in End Street and the decision was made to sell the whole block, Fox, Smal, Main and Von Weilligh and build a large and more permanent edifice near the Convent.

There is a story of those early days which will be of particular interest to the Kerk Street parishioners today.

Picture Johannesburg at that time. Its eastern boundary and hence the name was End Street: to the west was Fordsburg, where a small Church had been erected in Crown Road-1891. Doornfontein was then the residential area of the town. Towards the close of 1890 Father Monginoux, was returning to the Presbytery in Fox Street, after visiting some of his parishioncrs in in Doornfontein. He crossed over the open space now bounded by Kerk, Gold, Pritchard and Nugget Streets. Its size, locality etc. immediately struck him as ideal for a Church site. With a prayer in his heart, he took a medal of Our Lady from his pocket and pushed it into the ground, driving it in with his walking stick.

Two years passed by and in 1892, Fr. Monginoux was succeeded by Fr. A. Schoch. One of the new Prefect's first duties was the choice of a new and larger site for a Church. He built the second Church already referred to on the corner of Main and Von Weilligh Streets, but three years later the whole block was acquired by Castle Brewery, and Providence guided him in the choice of the new site to the one for which Fr. Monginoux had offered that fervent prayer.


Kerk Street Church, the Church and Presbytery erected in Kerk Street was quite an ambitious building for the early days of the mining town.

The foundation stone was blessed and laid by Bishop Jolivet O.M.I. is this small stone that has been now transferred to the Cathedral and set into the wall at the main entrance in Saratoga Avenue.

The details of that ceremony will be of interest to us of the next generation. The date was Sunday June 7th. Solemn High Mass was sung that morning in the Convent School Hall in End Street by Fr. Van Laar with Fathers de Lacy and Tresch as Deacon and Sub-deacon. His Lordship presided and after the Mass administered Confirmation to some forty candidates. At 3.30 p.m. a large crowd gathered within the walls of the new Church, and two stones, one for the Church and another for the Presbytery, were blessed and placed in position by the Bishop. In his speech Fr. Van Laar spoke of how fitting it was that the pioneer missionary in the Transvaal, His Lordship, should have performed this ceremony and expressed the regret of all present at the unavoidable absence of Fr. Schoch

to whose zeal and organising ability the erection of the buildings were due. Fr. Schoch was away in German West Africa preparing for the arrival of the first Oblate Missionaries.

We are told that over £300 was placed by the people on the foundation stone towards the Building Fund.

On Sunday, November 15th the new Church dedicated under the title of the Immaculate Conception was solemnly opened. Bishop Anthony Gaughren O.M.I, of Kimberley, performed the ceremony and preached.

A third ceremony took place on June 27th of the following year, the solemn blessing and inauguration of the new organ. This time Fr. Schoch was present and paid tribute to the excellent work of the choir under Mr. J. P. O'Rielly in their rendering of the Church's music and through whose efforts the funds for the new organ had been collected.

Such were the beginnings of the Kerk St. Pro-Cathedral which for over sixty years has been the Mother Church of the city and whose memories will be forever imprinted upon the minds of tens of thousands of Catholics throughout South Africa.

Plans for Cathedral

With the establishment of the Union of South Africa, conditions generally became more permanent. Johannesburg, due to the development of the many mines, grew rapidly into a town, then a city extending itself into new suburbs on every side. It became increasingly difficult for the priests to keep up with the expansion; however, small Churches were established to meet the needs of the growing population both European and non-European.
Meanwhile the idea of a Cathedral to replace the temporary edifice in Kerk Street was not lost sight of but like every Mother, the Pro-Cathedral sacrificed itself for her young. It is true to say that had the Bishop acted otherwise many opportunities of excellent sites and subsequent facilities for our people would have been lost.

A motor car drive from Clarendon Circle in either a north easterly or north westerly direction, and the pin pointing of our Churches, Convents, Colleges and Institutions today is proof positive of the wisdom of the pioneer priests. While the collection of funds for a Cathedral had commenced before the turn of the century it was only in 1937, on the occasion of the celebrations for the Golden Jubilee of Johannesburg's first Mass, that Bishop D. O'Leary made known his ambitious plans for a Cathedral, on the Kerk Street site.

The outbreak of the Second World War in 1939 meant the postponement of his ideas and before it was over Bishop O'Leary sold half of the Kerk Street block with a view to purchasing a more central site for the Cathedral.

It is to his successor, Bishop W. P. Whelan, now Archbishop of Bloemfontein, that we owe the debt of gratitude for purchasing the site on Saratoga Avenue, just off End Street, well served by the City Transport, with facilities for parking and with a commanding position below the Berea.

Meanwhile the task of building up a sum of money for the Cathedral Fund was redoubled and here tribute must be given to Very Rev. Fr. J. G. Braniff, Administrator, for his untir|ng and most successful efforts in this direction. Bishop Whelan entrusted the plans for a Cathedral on the new site to Mr. Gregory of Belfast, Northern Ireland.

In 1954 came the news of the appointment of His Lordship to be Archbishop of Bloemfontein and the transfer of Bishop Boyle from Port Elizabeth to Johannesburg. Almost from the date of his arrival Bishop Boyle was most enthusiastic about the building of the Cathedral as soon as possible.

Various changes were made in the former plan, undertaken by Mr. Gregory's son, Mr. Brian Gregory B.A., A.R.I.B.A., M.R.I.A., and all the preliminaries having been gone through, the foundation stone of the Cathedral was laid by Bishop O'Leary, and blessed by Bishop Boyle on June 29th, 1958, the Centenary Year of the Apparitions of Our Blessed Lady at Lourdes. On that occasion Bishop Boyle remarked how fitting it was that the ceremony should take place on the feasts of Saints Peter and Paul. "As this building is for us a confession of faith in the Divinity of Christ, of trust in His promises, an indication of our love and sign of our loyalty, as a practical proof we are erecting our Cathedral to His honour and glory.

"We are particularly happy to have with us today and to take an active part in this ceremony, Bishop O'Leary whose desire it always had been to have a Cathedral in this city and we are indeed happy that he will have this desire realised," concluded His Lordship. Alas it was not to be. Within a few weeks following this ceremony Bishop O'Leary passed to his reward. His remains are to be reinterred in the crypt of the Cathedral.

During the last two years the work of building has gone on continually. Every Catholic and many other citizens too, have taken an interest in the progress made and as the shell of the edifice reached completion it was with pride that all looked forward to the opening ceremony.

This then is the story of the Cathedral of Christ the King in our City. Elsewhere in this brochure there are detailed descriptions and explanations of its many features. Here is a story of visions and dreams, of untold sacrifices, that with God's help has been brought to reality.

As we of our time feel grateful to the pioneers so future generations will, we trust, offer a fervent prayer for the part we have played and in turn through the years they will enhance, embellish and ultimately complete this House of God in the City of Gold.

Let us hope we have fulfilled the promise made by Father Schoch over sixty years ago "Later on we might do the beautiful and the grand and then we mean to do it right well."

Tabernacle of the Most High

Mother of the Redeemer and Tabernacle of the Most High, we greet you. In the first instant of your life God made you the sanctuary of his presence. The Son of God found in you a dwelling place on earth. You received Jesus with undivided heart and became one with him.

Mary, Mother of Christ and our Mother, may we become more worthy tabernacles of God by your prayer. Show us Jesus in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar. Implore your Son to grant us conversion of heart.

Mary, our Mother we thank you. Together with you we give all glory and honour to the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.


Thursday, July 10, 2008

Per, Ipsum et Cum Ipso et in Ipso


A Vision of St. Don Bosco

Most of the prophecies associated with Don Bosco came to him during dreams, but just as in Matthew's Gospel where the process of Joseph being instructed by angels during dreams is described it is clear that Don Bosco's experiences were more than the sort of dreams most of us have when asleep.

Most of his dreams were concerned with the direction both he and his order, the Salesians, were to take in the future, and in particular with the boys who lived at his oratory in Turin. He would often speak to them just before they went to bed, sometimes predicting that one of their number would die within a certain period, but without indicating which.

On 30 May 1862 Don Bosco at his 'Good Night' talk told his boys, and the young clerics he was training, about a dream he had dreamt a few nights previously: he actually described it as a parable or allegory. Strictly speaking a parable is a general story with a deeper meaning, but one in which the points of the story may not all be significant, while in an allegory every detail is important and meaningful. In the case of Don Bosco's dream it is difficult to know just how significant each point is. After some preliminary remarks he went on to describe what he had seen:

"Try to picture yourselves with me on the seashore, or, better still, on an outlying cliff with no other land in sight. The vast expanse of water is covered with a formidable array of ships in battle formation, prows fitted with sharp spear-like beaks capable of breaking through any defence. All are heavily armed with cannons, incendiary bombs, and firearms of all sorts - even books - and are heading toward one stately ship, mightier than them all. As they try to close in, they try to ram it, set it afire, and cripple it as much as possible.

"This stately vessel is shielded by a flotilla escort. Winds and waves are with the enemy. In this midst of this endless sea, two solid columns, a short distance apart, soar high into the sky: one is surmounted by a statue of the Immaculate Virgin at whose feet a large inscription reads: Help of Christians; the other, far loftier and sturdier, supports a [Communion] Host of proportionate size and bears beneath it the inscription Salvation of believers.

"The flagship commander - the Roman Pontiff [the Pope]- seeing the enemy's fury and his auxiliary ships very grave predicament, summons his captains to a conference. However, as they discuss their strategy, a furious storm breaks out and they must return to their ships. When the storm abates, the Pope again summons his captains as the flagship keeps on its course. But the storm rages again. Standing at the helm, the Pope strains every muscle to steer his ship between the two columns from whose summits hang many anchors and strong hooks linked to chains.

"The entire enemy fleet closes in to intercept and sink the flagship at all costs. They bombard it with everything they have: books and pamphlets, incendiary bombs, firearms, cannons. The battle rages ever more furious. Beaked prows ram the flagship again and again, but to no avail, as, unscathed and undaunted, it keeps on its course. At times a formidable ram splinters a gaping hole into its hull, but, immediately, a breeze from the two columns instantly seals the gash.

"Meanwhile, enemy cannons blow up, firearms and beaks fall to pieces, ships crack up and sink to the bottom. In blind fury the enemy takes to hand-to-hand combat, cursing and blaspheming. Suddenly the Pope falls, seriously wounded. He is instantly helped up but, struck down a second time, dies. A shout of victory rises from the enemy and wild rejoicing sweeps their ships. But no sooner is the Pope dead than another takes his place. The captains of the auxiliary ships elected him so quickly that the news of the Pope's death coincides with that of his successor's election. The enemy's self-assurance wanes.

"Breaking through all resistance, the new Pope steers his ship safely between the two columns and moors it to the two columns; first to the one surmounted by the Host, and then to the other, topped by the statue of the Virgin. At this point something unexpected happens. The enemy ships panic and disperse, colliding with and scuttling each other. Some auxiliary ships which had gallantly fought alongside their flagship are the first to tie up at the two columns.

"Many others, which had fearfully kept far away from the fight, stand still, cautiously waiting until the wrecked enemy ships vanish under the waves. Then, they too head for the two columns, tie up at the swinging hooks, and ride safe and tranquil beside their flagship. A great calm now covers the sea."

At this point Don Bosco asked one of the priests present for his views. He replied that he thought that the flagship symbolised the Church headed by the Pope, with the ships representing mankind and the sea as an image of the world. The ships defending the flagship he equated with the laity and the attackers with those trying to destroy the Church, while the two columns represented devotion to Mary and the Eucharist.

He did not mention the death of the Pope and neither did Don Bosco in his reply, in which he agreed with what the priest had said, while adding that the enemy ships symbolised persecutions:

"Very grave trials await the Church. What we have suffered so far is almost nothing compared to what is going to happen. The enemies of the Church are symbolised by the ships which strive their utmost to sink the flagship. Only two things can save us in such a grave hour: devotion to Mary and frequent Communion. Let us do our very best to use these two means and have others use them everywhere."

Not surprisingly this contents of this dream amazed all those listening, and four of those present wrote down what they had heard. Two wrote the next day, 31 May and two some time later, but all four narratives agree substantially. Such small differences as were found can be explained on the basis that it is impossible to get every detail when remembering and writing a spoken narrative.

One point that did cause some argument amongst those who had been present was over whether there had been two popes as commander of the flagship as in the above account, or, as some thought, three. This point was made clearer in 1886 when one of those who had heard the dream recounted in 1862 returned to the Oratory.

At dinner with Don Bosco he began to narrate the dream and was quite certain that two popes had fallen, since he was sure that after the first was struck down the captains of the other ships had said, 'Let's hurry, We can quickly replace him'; on the second occasion he maintained that they had said nothing. Don Bosco seemed to back up this version of events by calling attention to what was being said, and so its probable that we are dealing with three popes in the account.

Those who had written down the dream were convinced that it was a genuine vision and prophecy, although Don Bosco's immediate aim was probably to encourage his boys to pray more fervently for the Church and the Pope, as well as to indicate the importance of devotion to Mary and the Blessed Sacrament.

We may be living part way through Don Bosco's vision, but as in all genuine prophecy before its fulfilment, there is quite a degree of uncertainty and ambiguity, and it would be foolish to attempt to come to definite conclusions at this stage. The important point is the way in which the end of the vision points to what would seem to be the world-wide triumph of the Church, a triumph which will be recognised by all, but one which is only gained after much suffering.

The emphasis on the role of Mary, Help of Christians, and the Blessed Sacrament, are also significant especially with regard to the message given at Fatima when Mary promised a period of peace for the world following troubled times, paralleled by the 'great calm' of Don Bosco's dream.

Sources: E. M. Brown, Ed., Dreams, Visions and Prophecies of Don Bosco, (Don Bosco Publications, New Rochelle, 1986); Sexton, Dominic Savio, Schoolboy Saint.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Christ the King, the Social Kingship of our Lord Jesus Christ

The Social Kingship of Christ

From Modernism and its rejection of the social claims of Jesus Christ to relativism and the collapse of Christianity in Europe – Pope Benedict sees the connection. Do the English and Welsh bishops? Their recent decision to abandon three Holy Days of Obligation suggests they are committed to a religious minimalism which makes the fewest possible demands on their declining congregations. Fortunately, the thousands of young folk who annually make the arduous Chartres Pilgrimage as part of the new evangelisation called for by John Paul II think differently. Gino D'Oca introduces the concept of Christ’s Social Kingship and what it means for us today.

“Cujus regni non erit finis” (...of whose kingdom there shall be no end).

We live in an increasingly morally relativist and thus permissive society, one in which all attitudes and lifestyles must be accommodated in the name of liberty, equality and dignity. (However, this ‘dignity’ is false. The foundation of genuine dignity is in fact truth. Through his knowledge of truth man obeys God, and only then can he obtain perfection, the most dignified state possible. If he drifts away from truth, something that is always likely in a climate in which all abominations are tolerated or even embraced, then his ability to obtain perfection is obliterated.) This deluded ‘philosophy’, best termed Modernism, sanctions all the contemporary evils that cry to heaven for vengeance, from capitalist-fuelled materialism to widespread personal immodesty.

Attempting to define Modernism in specific terms is impossible, for error by its very nature is disordered and evolves, in contrast to the timeless and constant qualities of truth. Nonetheless, A. Cavallanti (in Modernismo e Modernisti, Brescia, 1907) describes its core essence as “a morbid state of conscience…that professes manifold ideals, opinions, and tendencies. From time to time these tendencies work out into systems, that are to renew the basis and superstructure of society, politics, philosophy, theology…” The Catholic publicist M. Périn (1815-1905) tells us that the ultimate aim of the modernist is “the ambition to eliminate God from all social life.”

A Modernist mindset

Of course, one need only ask receptive Catholics, even those least doctrinally versed, and they will often respond that this ‘vanquishing of God’ from society is the phenomenon they most strongly associate with our times. Interestingly, Pope St Pius X’s words from 1907 seen even more relevant today: “Modernism leads to atheism and to the annihilation of all religion. The error of Protestantism made the first step on this path; that of Modernism makes the second; atheism makes the next.” (Pascendi Dominici Gregis)

Modernism was born at the French Revolution, since it was then that many of those principles which the Church had rebuked as outrageous, were first unleashed with full force under the motto of “liberty, equality and fraternity”.

How does this slogan manifest itself in reality? Liberty: freedom from any supernatural order, freedom of expression and thought, thus a rejection of Church teachings; equality: a belief that no one religion is true, all are equally valid or invalid; fraternity: the submission to a general consensus that takes into account opinions based solely on these versions of liberty and equality.

Thus the aim of Freemasonry, or those adhering to its principles such as modernists and present-day liberals, was to apply in the social, political and ecclesiastical spheres a rationalist, free-thinking, and subjectivist ideology, eventually resulting in the deification of man, and emancipation from the Church. And therefore it is not surprising that the separation of the Church and state in Catholic lands was the most triumphant accomplishment of those motivated by these masonic ideals.

It was partly in response to the vicious and highly concerted modernist movement, that in 1925 Pope Pius XI published the encyclical Quas Primas to institute a feast to be celebrated by the Universal Church on the last Sunday in October, the Feast of Our Lord Jesus Christ the King. His Holiness speaks of the usefulness of feasts: “Man is composed of body and soul, and he needs these external festivities so that the sacred rites, in all their beauty and variety, may stimulate him to drink more deeply of the fountain of God’s teaching, that he may make it a part of himself, and use it with profit for his spiritual life” (Quas Primas, § 21). And then specifically of the Feast of Our Lord Jesus Christ the King:

The annual and universal celebration of the feast…will draw attention to the evils which anti-clericalism has brought upon society in drawing men away from Christ, and will also do much to remedy them. While nations insult the beloved name of our Redeemer by suppressing all mention of it in their conferences and parliaments, we must all the more loudly proclaim his kingly dignity and power, all the more universally affirm his rights.’

Our Lord Jesus Christ as King

Christ exercised three principal offices during His time on earth; that of teacher, priest and pastor. As teacher, He sought to free mankind from the slavery of its ignorance that persists to the delight of the master of deception, Satan: “He that committeth sin is from the devil: for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose, the Son of God appeared, that he might destroy the works of the devil” (1 John, 3: 8). As priest, Our Lord offered Himself on the cross as a true and proper sacrifice to bring about man’s reconciliation with God: “You are not redeemed with corruptible things…But with the precious blood of Christ” (1 Peter, 1:18-19). Finally, as pastor, that is lawgiver and judge, He showed mankind the right path to salvation, as Pius XI tells us: “Not only do the gospels tell us that he made laws, but they present him to us in the act of making them. Those who keep them show their love for their Divine Master, and he promises that they shall remain in his love” (Quas Primas, § 14). In our recitation of the Nicene Creed we reaffirm our belief in, and obedience to, the eternal Kingdom over which Christ as king exercises this pastoral office, “of whose Kingdom there shall be no end.”

Devotion to Christ as king has been apparent from apostolic times. In the Old Testament, notably in the psalms, (see also the testimony of the prophet Isaias, IX, 6-7), we read the prophesies of the messianic kingship. Whilst even at the Annunciation the royal dignity of Christ is made explicit by the angel: “And the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of David his father; and he shall reign in the house of Jacob forever” (Luke, 1: 32). Likewise as He enters Jerusalem on an ass, that first Palm Sunday, he is received by the disciples as a king; ‘Blessed be the king who cometh in the name of the Lord, peace in heaven, and glory on high’ (Luke, 19: 38). And as His earthy ministry draws to a close, He professes Himself king before Pilate, and stresses the divine nature of His royal office: “My kingdom is not of this world…Pilate therefore said to him: Art thou a king then? Jesus answered: Thou sayest that I am a king. For this was I born” (John 18: 36).

In Quas Primas Pius XI provides two reasons why Our Lord Jesus Christ is truly king. The first relates to the hypostatic union, that is the unity of the divine and human natures in the one person of Christ. Through this union He bridges the gap between heaven and earth, a point reiterated by St Augustine: “Lo, thou art far from God, O man, and God is far above man. Between them the God-man placed Himself” (Sermon on the New Testament, LXXXI). Therefore, since Our Lord is God, He is king. However, His empire eclipses all earthly realms formed by man-made constitutions, for He is king of all creation, heaven and earth.

The second reason given is on account of His work of redemption, one which was of course only adequate due to the hypostatic union. By the shedding of His precious blood on Calvary He conquered all souls (1 John 2: 2; 1 Tim. 2: 6 etc). Thus since we were both created and redeemed by Him, we are by right His subjects.

Christ as King in society

A belief in, for want of a less over-used term, a politically correct brand of religious liberty leads men to think that there can and should exist a separation of the Church from any matters of the state. True liberty means the freedom of the soul to seize and adhere to truth. There is nothing at all charitable about telling other religions that they offer another means of salvation. The Holy Ghost does not choose for there to be separated churches and ecclesial communities, it is men that decide such. As St Augustine states regarding separated and heretical Donatists, ‘It [baptism] does not belong to you. That which is yours are your bad sentiments and sacrilegious practices; and that you have the impiety to separate yourselves from us’ (De Baptismo Contra Donatistas). Consequently, only the true Church of Christ, the Roman Church, has the right of say in civil matters. Those who support a politically correct ‘ecumenism’ tend to deny a unity of Church and State because in practice they place all faiths on the same level, and so they declare that no one religion can exert its teachings over another.

Those who deny ecclesiastical authority in civil matters are, to quote St Paul, like the pagans, “a law unto themselves” (Rom. 2: 14-15). And alas it is these men that form our contemporary civil governments, men who dethrone Christ and effectively march under the three-pronged Masonic banner.

One of the worst examples of a civil government having as its foundation a Godless system was the former Soviet Union. And even after its collapse seventeen years ago, the moral degeneration of Russian society continues unabated. The realities of modern Russia are a record abortion rate – five to six per woman; rampant alcoholism; widespread premature death; an AIDS epidemic; terrifying levels of child abuse and prostitution, and ever increasing financial criminality, not to mention crippling poverty.

Pope Pius XI saw the rise of Communism and other regimes of terror, and stressed to the world that Christ alone is the rightful claimant to dominion over our lives, not deluded men:

His empire includes not only Catholic nations, not only baptised persons who, though of right belonging to the Church, have been led astray by error, or have been cut off from her by schism, but also all those who are outside the Christian faith; so that truly the whole of mankind is subject to the power of Jesus Christ…Nor is there any difference in this matter between the individual and the family or the State; for all men, whether collectively or individually, are under the dominion of Christ. In him is the salvation of the individual, in him is the salvation of society’ (Quas Primas, § 18).

Nowadays, the reality is that believers cannot rely upon civil authorities to uphold satisfactorily the moral law – the present times speak for themselves. Our societies will not be able to continue on this phoney and perilous path which ignores the truth that it is the teaching of Christ alone that is the instrument of world peace and justice; “And all creation being made subject to His dominion He might deliver…a kingdom of truth and life, a kingdom of holiness and grace, a kingdom of justice, love and peace” (Preface for the Mass of Christ the King, Traditional Rite).

However, let us not delude ourselves into thinking that all followers of Christ today accept His social kingship. Many Christians are deceived by the subjectivist climate that now prevails, and believe that the Church ought to stay out of political matters, leaving each individual ‘free’ to follow his own code of morality, or even dogma! They ignore the fact that the Church in fulfilling her proper role has from the earliest times had an impact upon every aspect of life, and that faith in its true sense – a complete assent to the revealed truths of God – can only be realised through its being a way of life, or a manner of being in, and thinking about, the world. Evidence of this is the fact that Our Lord did not simply preach moral precepts demanded by God, but actually exercised them. A saint, Pope Pius X, did his utmost to safeguard fallen and weak-willed mankind by exercising the authority of the Church’s Ordinary Magisterium to express doctrinally the fact that a severance of the Church of Christ from civil affairs “is a thesis absolutely false, [and] a most pernicious error…” (Vehementer Nos, 11 February 1906).

Christ as King in our lives

In his encyclical Pius XI also describes how we ought to make Christ king in our own lives. Christ must become king of our thoughts precisely because He is God, and thus truth. In addition not only is He king of our minds, but also of all nature. Consequently, in making Him the king of our will we must also strive to obey the law of God that is inscribed on our hearts, submitting ourselves to His precepts of love and charity. (The author of nature, God, has imprinted and engraved a law into the souls of all His rational creatures permitting them to reject evil and embrace good. See for example Romans, 2: 15.) Evidently the ways of the Kingdom of Christ are not the ways of the world; we call to mind Our Lord’s words when in dialogue with His disciples: “You are not of the world; I chose you out of the world” (John 15: 19).

A rejection of the Social Kingship of Christ by men, including many in the Church, has helped the spirit of atheism to penetrate little by little into all domains. Secularism, which is nothing less than an expression of an atheistic or agnostic belief system, is the order of the day. However we must not forget that to be on Christ’s side means to share with Him in all the opposition and humiliation that He so acceptingly endured: “If we suffer with Him we may also be glorified with Him’ (Rom. 8: 15-17). In defending our stance against modern evils and the insults of the enemies of Christ, we must hold steadfast to the Church’s teachings, which cannot be abstracted from their source, God.

I end with the words of Pius XI, discussing the distressing results of uncrowning Christ:

The rebellion of individuals and states against the authority of Christ has produced deplorable consequences…we lament them today: the seeds of discord sown far and wide; those bitter enmities and rivalries between nations, which still hinder so much the cause of peace; that insatiable greed which is so often hidden under a pretence of public spirit and patriotism, and gives rise to so many private quarrels; a blind and immoderate selfishness, making men seek nothing but their own comfort and advantage, and measure everything by these; no peace in the home, because men have forgotten or neglect their duty; the unity and stability of the family undermined; society in a word, shaken to its foundations and on the way to ruin (Quas Primas, § 24).

[Taken from "Mass of Ages" November 2006, The Latin Mass Society's quarterly magazine]

Cardinal Castrillion Satisfied with SSPX answer

SSPX will give heed to the five points
From the blog of Andrea Tornielli (Vatican correspondent for Il Giornale):

I have learned from secure sources that, contrary to what has appeared in certain articles, the response of the Fraternity [of Saint Pius X - FSSPX/SSPX] to the letter of Cardinal Castrillón has not in fact been negative. The Cardinal is satisfied with it, has responded to Fellay, and has promptly delivered the letter of the Fraternity to Benedict XVI. After the deadline of the end of June, the Lefebvrists [sic] ask for time but - it seems - they will respect the five points.

Our Lady of LaSalette

"The Church will be in eclipse . . ."

"Rome will lose the faith and become the seat of Anti-Christ. . . "

Our Lady of LaSalette to Melanie Calvat - 1846

Reform of the Reform, Changes to the Mass of Paul VI

Ignazio Ingrao, religious correspondent for Italian weekly Panorama, reports the following:


The rite of the Mass could change. According to some indiscretions, Benedict XVI has charged the Congregation for Divine Worship to study some modifications in the liturgy.

In particular, the Pope is said to have the intention to restore Latin for the formula for the Eucharistic consecration within the Mass in the "vernacular language", i.e. the one celebrated in the different national languages. The same could happen to the formulae of Baptism, Confirmation, Confession and of the other sacraments. In addition, the exchange of peace among the faithful during the Mass, which today takes place prior to the distribution of the Eucharist, could be anticipated (as in the Ambrosian rite) to the offertory so as not to disturb the recollection that precedes Communion.

These would be changes which would be added to the changes in the liturgy and regarding sacred vestments which the Pope, together with his Master of Ceremonies, Monsignor Guido Marini, has made in recent months, to recover ancient traditions: the restoration of the crucifix at the center of the altar, the distribution of Communion to the faithful in the mouth while kneeling, the recovery of the pastoral staff of Pius IX (the ferula), the changing of the style of pallium (the strip of white wool with red crosses worn by the Pope), the restoration of the papal throne used in the Consistory and the celebration of Mass with the back to the assembly, as happened in January in the Sistine Chapel.

Many of the Council Fathers believed that this would be order of the reformed Mass: most parts in the vernacular and the (one and only) Roman Canon kept in Latin. In fact, the Constitution Sacrosanctum Concilium did not seem to foresee the use of the vernacular during the Canon (cf. SC 36, 2; 54).

[Translation by Gregor Kollmorgen for The New Liturgical Movement./Tip: Papa Ratzinger blog.]

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Transapline Redemptorists in Good standing with Rome

This text is taken from the following link:

"1 July, 2008
Feast of the Precious Blood

My dear friends,

I am happy to inform you that last June 18th, before Cardinal Castrillon and the members of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei in Rome, I humbly petitioned the Holy See on my own behalf and on behalf of the monastery council for our priestly suspensions to be lifted.On June 26th I received word that the Holy See had granted our petition. All canonical censures have been lifted.Our community now truly rejoices in undisputed and peaceful posession of Communion with the Holy See because our priests are now in canonical good standing.

We are very grateful to our Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI for issuing, last July, the Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum which called us to come into undisputed and peaceful Communion with him.Now we have that undisputed communion! It is a pearl of great price; a treasure hidden in the field; a sweetness that cannot be imagined by those who have not tasted it or who have not known it, now for many years. Its value cannot be fully expressed in earthly language and therefore we hope that all traditional priests who have not yet done so, will answer Pope Benedict's call to enjoy the grace of peaceful and undisputed communion with him.

Believe us, the price to pay is nothing; even all the angry voices that have shouted against us and calumniated us are as nothing when weighed in the scales against undisputed communion with the Vicar of Christ; others have died for it; what are raucous voices?We publicly thank all those souls who have prayed for us over the last months; some of you have truly stormed heaven for us. You have kept us afloat. We are deeply grateful.

Especially we thank that priest who was unknown to us, until June 16th when he wrote in fraternal support. Where did he come from? Why us? But he told us of the number of Masses, Offices, prayers and sacrifices he had personally said for us; he had also enlisted the prayers of contemplatives and Third Order societies and had a great number of people fervently praying for us with an abundance of prayers. We were amazed! Thank you Father! Thank you also to that brave person who, so kindly wrote to us to say that if he said any more prayers for us he would be floating! What wonderful people! Thank you! Looking to the future, the next stage will be to have our community canonically erected.

So please, dear friends, keep praying for us, there will be many crosses to bear; but they will be yokes sweetened by the grace of these last days.
We assure you all of our very best wishes.

Your devoted servant,
Fr. Michael Mary, C.SS.R.Vicar General"