Archive for June, 2009

Ho capito tutto!

1Le grotte di Postumia in Slovenia e altre simili grotte sono diventate meta di turisti di tutto il mondo da quando è possibile visitarle attraverso la luce elettrica.  Prima erano solo grotte buie e spaventose.  La bellezza delle stalagmiti e delle sculture calcaree create dall’acqua nel tempo si può apprezzare solo con la luce.

Anche la vita umana assomiglia ad una grotta buia.  Riceve luce e senso quando viene illuminata dalla fede.

E’ una consapevolezza che vivono particolarmente coloro che si convertono in modo straordinario.

2Per esempio scrive Alfonso Ratisbonne, un ebreo ateo al quale il 20 gennaio 1842 apparve la Madonna nella chiesa romana di Sant’Andrea delle Fratte:

“Camminavo nella Chiesa.  Improv-visamente ho sentito una grande inquietudine e mi è sembrato che tutto fosse coperto da un velo.  Tutta la Chiesa mi pareva immersa nell’oscurità, trannne una cappella nella quale si era concentrata tutta la luce.  Ho guardato meglio quella cappella splendente e ho visto che sull’altare c’era la santissima Vergine Maria … Alla sua presenza ho compreso tutto, anche se non ha detto una parola sul terribile stato nel quale mi trovavo, niente sulla perversità del peccato e nulla sulla bellezza della fede Cattolica …

Eppure ho capito tutto!”

3

Holy anger

conscience

Mannono’s comment to my post ‘Niente crisi per i veggenti’ – “irascimini et nolite peccare” – gave me much food for thought.

There is a kind of minimalist approach to the Faith to which many Catholics are prone, not because they are Catholic, but because they are men.  There is something irksome about religion, and we have a tendency either to shirk off or minimalize all that is irksome to us.  And religion is irksome because it asks of us the most difficult of all things: that we reform our lives.  Genuine reform. 

For beginners, and even for veterans of many failed campaigns, in which number I include myself, the first objective must be to make friends with one’s conscience.  It may sound odd to speak of such a necessity, but our conscience is often regarded by us as a hostile force rather than a valued ally.  We are wont to indulge in activities in which conscience cannot participate; so it stands and looks on, and its aloofness and expression of regret can be irritating in the extreme.  We rather wish it would go elsewhere for the time being and return when we summon it, not hang about with its long face casting a gloom upon our pleasures.

So how does one befriend his conscience?  The problem was addressed admirably by a monk of the late fourth century named Isaiah the Solitary.  Isaiah quotes Our Lord’s advice that we come to agreement with our adversary before he turns us over to the judge, and the judge turns us over to the officer, who will cast us into prison.  The adversary, Isaiah explains, is our conscience, whose claims we must satisfy if we are to escape judgment and condemnation.  Chief among the means of satisfying conscience is the proper use of what he calls “the incensive power” – an anger of the intellect that is in accord with nature, which he identifies as the nature which God gave us, not our fallen condition as a result of original sin, which he regards as unnatural.  He writes: “Without anger a man cannot attain purity; he has to feel angry with all that is sown in him by the enemy”.  This “holy anger” can help us in our efforts to establish a habit of attentiveness.  We must develop a detestation of sin, realizing its ugliness and malice, and then set about rooting out its causes.  We must stop aiding and abetting the enemy and stand on the side of the angels, and then conscience will be transformed from being our accuser to being our defender.

Just for fun …

2Upon arrival to the U.S. and after getting all of Pope Benedict’s luggage loaded into the limo, and He doesn’t travel light, the driver notices that the Pope is still standing on the curb.  ‘Excuse me, Your Holiness,’ says the driver, ‘Would you please take your seat so we can leave?’

‘Well, to tell you the truth,’ says the Pope, ‘they never let me drive at the Vatican, and I’d really like to drive today.’

‘I’m sorry but I cannot let you do that. I’d lose my job! And what if something should happen?’ protests the driver, wishing he’d never gone to work that morning.  But the Pope pleads: ‘Please let me, just this once, please – just for fun’.

Reluctantly, the driver gets in the back as the Pope climbs in behind the wheel. The driver quickly regrets his decision when, after exiting the airport, the Pontiff floors it, accelerating the limo.

‘Please slow down, Your Holiness!!!’ pleads the worried driver, but the Pope keeps the pedal to the metal until they hear sirens. ‘Oh, dear God, I’m going to lose my license’ moans the driver.

The Pope pulls over and rolls down the window as the cop approaches, but the cop takes one look at him, goes back to his motorcycle, and gets on the radio.

‘I need to talk to the Chief,’ he says to the dispatcher.

The Chief gets on the radio and the cop tells him that he’s stopped a limo going at super speed.

‘So bust him,’ says the Chief.

‘I don’t think we want to do that – he’s really important,’ said the cop.

The Chief exclaimed, ‘All the more reason!’

‘No, I mean really important,’ said the cop.

The Chief then asked, ‘Who have you got there, the Mayor?’

Cop: ‘Bigger.’

Chief: ‘Governor?’

Cop: ‘Bigger.’

‘Well,’ said the Chief, ‘Who is it?’

Cop: ‘I think it’s God!’

Chief: ‘What?! What makes you think it’s God?’

Cop: ‘the Pope is his chauffeur!’

 ******

1Nell’ultima visita a New York, il Papa chiede di poter guidare la sua limousine, così, per una volta, per togliersi la voglia. La richiesta appare strana, ma il suo desiderio ovviamente viene esaudito. Così l’autista si siede dietro e il papa parte e imbocca l’autostrada. Dopo un po’ però pigia troppo sull’acceleratore e supera abbondantemente i limiti di velocità. Ovviamente ad un certo punto viene fermato da un poliziotto. Questi si rende conto della situazione e imbarazzato chiama via radio il suo capitano per avere istruzioni.

“Capitano, ho fermato una persona molto importante per eccesso di velocità e non so cosa fare”.

“E chi sarebbe, il Presidente?”.

“No! Questo e’ molto più importante!”.

“Ma chi è?, il segretario generale dell’ONU?”.

“No! No! Molto più importante!”.

“Ma insomma chi e’? “.

“Capitano, è Dio … ha il Papa come autista!”.

God first!

God first 1Many people today are convinced that all that really matters is what one does, a ‘right conduct’, love of our neighbour.  On the other hand, concern for a ‘right belief’ according to the true meaning of Scripture, read within the living tradition of the Church, occupies second place … if it’s not downright alienating.  No longer does union with God have the primacy.  Rather social activism has displaced it, little matter that a supernatural sacramental life has always occupied first place in the life of all the Saints.

God first 2Most of us, I’m sure, have heard many a modernist sermon on Christian action being more important than devotional efforts at union with God.

What did Jesus answer when a lawyer asked Him: “Master, which is the great commandment in the law?”  Jesus said: “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with thy whole heart, and with thy whole soul, and with thy whole mind.  This is the greatest and the first commandment.  And the second is like to this: Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself”.

Beautiful words.  The essence of what it is to be a Christian.

God first 4The sermons we hear, however, usually go something like this:  Yes, we should love the Lord our God.  But the Lord our God is a Spirit.  How do we go about loving an invisible Spirit?  We love our neighbour.  That is in fact exactly how we love God: by loving our neighbour.  At best, the sermon puts the two commandments on a par, whereas Jesus actually said that love of God is the greatest commandment. Also, the sermon subtly reverses the order of the two commandments – love your neighbour and thereby love God.  Efforts at seeking union with God are in effect out of the picture entirely and Christianity is reduced to a vague form of ‘feel-good’ humanism.

No!

God first 3We first love God with our whole heart – all of it – and our whole soul and our whole mind.  Only then are we able to practice the second commandment, loving our neighbours and our enemies truly as ourselves.  It is the love of God that is the enabling love, not the other way around!

Niente crisi per i veggenti!

maga2In questo momento una TV privata sta pubblicizzando talismani e amuleti in una rubrica dedicata agli oroscopi pubblici – il cliente telefona, dice il proprio nome e la data di nascita, e si sente descrivere quello che sta per accadere nel lavoro, in famiglia, altrove.  Genericamente, ma gratis.  Per un vaticinio più preciso l’invito è a consultare privatamente l’esperto.  La maggior precisione va pagata.  A dispetto delle tante analisi sociologiche secondo le quali noi italiani saremmo molto maturi, ci troviamo in pieno boom dei veggenti, maghi, astrologi, cartomanti!  Secondo una stima, solo nella mia provincia ci sarebbero ottanta maghi palesi e un centinaio di astrologi.  Gli occultisti, che si attribuiscono radici scientifiche e vorrebbero regolarizzare il settore con un progetto di legge, accusano di ciarlataneria gli altri, e viceversa … insomma, i ciarlatani non scarseggiano.

maga1Sant’Agostino, che se ne intendeva, rinnoverebbe i suoi fulmini non solo contro gli imbroglioni che speculano sulla speranza e sulla disperazione ma soprattutto contro l’innume – revole folla dei creduloni – quest’Italia che parla tanto di scienza senza però fidarsene, che avverte la presenza di un mondo non solo fisico … ma ne cerca le tracce in stanze esoteriche!

Mille forme di incultura hanno ormai stravinto.  L’Italiano medio ha doppia auto, doppia casa, doppio lavoro, doppia pensione, doppio telegiornale, terroristi doppi (quelli buoni e quelli cattivi) contro i quali operano due polizie.  C’è una doppia economia, emersa e sommersa, spesso una doppia morale, una doppia storia, quella vernacola e quella nazionale … insomma, una specie di doppia vita.  Forse questa doppiezza può aiutare a capire almeno in parte quest’altra forma di incultura: la corsa ai veggenti – un modo ‘laterale’ di esistere?  Una situazione che si vorrebbe spacciare per maturità e vecchiaia saggia … e intanto il boom dei maghi prospera su questa vecchiaia italiana, che sta infettando gli stessi nostri ragazzi, già carichi di inculture che non li aiutano a scrutare il mondo, ignari, così come le cicale non sanno del ramo che le sostiene.

maga3

The Traditional Family

Throughout history, over millennia and across civilizations, heterosexual marriage, procreation and the nurturing of children has been the bedrock of society.  It is the best, most cost-effective welfare safety net ever created – husbands taking care of wives and children. Wives taking care of husbands and children, children taking care of parents.

Today, the traditional family has no greater supporter and friend than the Catholic Church.

Yet for the past fifty years, the ‘modern’ world has been practicing a vast, uncontrolled experiment in redesigning society.  Contraception, abortion, feminism, secularism, radical individualism, relativism and acceptance of perversion are found now in most countries.  Worse, marriage is being redefined to the point of meaninglessness.  All these have greatly undermined the traditional family, to the point at which in many European countries it is more common for children to be born out of wedlock than to a married couple.

Not surprisingly, a mammoth, extremely costly social welfare system has developed to fill in for what the traditional family did naturally and efficiently.  How this system will be funded in the future with a rapidly declining population is one of Europe’s most pressing problems.

However, in a society in which Catholic teaching on the sanctity of life and the indissolubility of marriage prevailed, not only would the birth dearth disappear but the public welfare system would need to be only a small fraction of the size of those in today’s modern secular state.

The cornerstone of the Church’s social gospel is support for families, and the Vatican has always strongly articulated governments’ obligation to support natural families.  As Pope Leo XIII wrote in ‘Rerum Novarum’:

“It is a most sacred law of nature that a father should provide food and all necessaries for those whom he has begotten; and, similarly, it is natural that he should wish that his children should be by him provided with all that is needful to enable them to keep themselves decently from want and misery … if the families on entering into association and fellowship, were to experience hindrance in a commonwealth instead of help, and were to find their rights attacked instead of being upheld, society would rightly be an object of detestation rather than of desire”.

Most Western governments are marching down this destructive path by hindering rather than supporting the traditional family.

As the Church has long maintained, only by recognizing God’s sovereignty and protecting the natural law and natural institutions like marriage and the family can governments re-establish and maintain their citizens’ loyalty.

Clearly, without the Church, the glorious civilization known as Europe – the greatest mankind has known – will die.  To regain its grandeur, Europe must regain its faith.

This might seem utopian but … how much easier is it to rebuild something than to create it in the first place?  All we need is the will and it can be so again!

family saying grace

Heart to heart

FEAST OF THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS

FESTA DEL SACRO CUORE DI GESU’

 sacred heart

 

“Benedirò i luoghi dove l’immagine del mio Sacro Cuore verrà esposta ed onorata”. 

“I will pour forth my blessings and graces wherever the image of my Sacred Heart is exposed”.

 
 (Revelations of Our Lord to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque)

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Another beautiful day! Praise the Lord.

June 2009
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THE LATIN MASS


The most beautiful thing this side of heaven!




FALANGI, TRUPPE, DIVISIONI CORAZZATE. ECCO CHE AVANZA IL NUOVO CATTOLICO: INNAMORATO DI GESU', INTRANSIGENTE, MOVIMENTISTA, IL CROCIATO DEI VALORI, IL SOLDATO DI CRISTO, UN CUORE TRADIZIONALISTA, AMANTE DELLA MESSA DI TUTTI I TEMPI ...



e-campagna: Io sto con il Papa

IL CANTO DEL PARADISO


Dopo due millenni di studi, di ricerche e di esplorazioni scientifiche, la genesi del canto gregoriano resta un mistero irrisolto


RELIGIOUS LIBERTY MIGHT BE SUPPOSED TO MEAN THAT EVERYBODY IS FREE TO DISCUSS RELIGION. IN PRACTICE IT MEANS THAT HARDLY ANYBODY IS ALLOWED TO MENTION IT.



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The story of our salvation!







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IN HOC SIGNO VINCES




INDIFFERENTISM is a mortal sin; a condemned heresy. That's the Catholic view of the matter. INDIFFERENTISM paves the way to MORAL RELATIVISM. I have been accused of the opposite of ‘Indifferentism’, which is defined as ‘Rigorism’, and the charge is not without some merit. I believe in a rigorous following of Church doctrine and in strict accuracy in proper Catholic catechesis, and I openly attack watered-down Catholic doctrine and catechesis whenever and wherever I encounter it. Many friends scold me saying that for me it’s either my way or the highway. But here’s the thing … it’s not my way; I didn’t make up all (or any of) the rules of Catholicism. I’ve been told “you’re too rigid in your doctrine,” as if it were my doctrine. When it comes to Catholic catechesis, there is only one Church teaching, and it is represented in the Catechism of the Catholic Church. I’m prepared to defend any item in it, against any opponent. I draw the line at ‘indifferentism’ and ‘moral relativism’. All belief systems are not the same. The ones who push it the most are the ones who seek to replace it with something less. Again, indifferentism paves the way to moral decay. Don’t let it seep into your thinking. May you please God, and may you live forever.

“Oremus pro beatissimo Papa nostro Benedicto XVI: Dominus conservet eum, et vivificet eum, et beatum faciat eum in terra, et non tradat eum in animam inimicorum eius.”



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WARNING!!! This blog is heretic repellent ...


MODERN CATHOLICS SEE THE CHURCH AS AN ‘OLD-FASHIONED’ DISCRIMINATORY INSTITUTION OF WHICH THEY ARE ASHAMED – A TRADITIONAL CATHOLIC WILL DIE TO DEFEND IT.

MODERN CATHOLICS WOULD JUST AS SOON LEAVE THE CHURCH FOR A TRENDY ALTERNATIVE IF THEY DON’T GET THEIR WAY – A TRADITIONAL CATHOLIC WILL REMAIN UNTIL THE END OF TIME.


THE CHURCH MILITANT NOW, MORE THAN EVER, NEEDS STRONG WARRIORS.




The Catholic Church doesn’t need progressives, Nor does it need Reactionary Conservatives - It badly needs Catholic Traditionalists that practice faith, hope and charity. So don’t be shy! Come forward.

“When Christ at a symbolic moment was establishing His great society, He chose for its corner-stone neither the brilliant Paul nor the mystic John, but a shuffler, a snob, a coward - in a word, a man. And upon this rock He has built His Church, and the gates of Hell have not prevailed and will not prevail against it. All the empires and the kingdoms have failed because of this inherent and continual weakness, that they were founded by strong men and upon strong men. But this one thing - the historic Catholic Church - was founded upon a weak man, and for that reason it is indestructible. For no chain is stronger than its weakest link.”
(G.K. Chesterton)



Anno Sacerdotale

Pope Benedict XVI has declared a “Year for Priests” beginning with the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus on June 19, 2009. The year will conclude in Rome with an international gathering of priests with the Holy Father on June 19, 2010.
******

Quest'anno sia anche un'occasione per un periodo di intenso approfondimento dell'identità sacerdotale, della teologia del sacerdozio cattolico e del senso straordinario della vocazione e della missione dei sacerdoti nella Chiesa e nella società.
******

Let your light so shine before men that, seeing your good works, they may glorify your Father in Heaven. (Matthew 5:16)
******

In Domino laudabitur anima mea.





"That sense of the sacred dogmas is to be faithfully kept which Holy Mother Church has once declared, and is not to be departed from under the specious pretext of a more profound understanding."- Pope Leo XIII, Testem Benevolentiae

Nessuno di noi entrerà in Paradiso senza portare con sé un fratello o una sorella. Ciascuno di noi deve uscire dalla folla e reggersi sulle proprie gambe, fiero di essere un Cattolico e capace di testimoniare la sua Fede.
Ci stiamo comportando come se la Fede Cattolica fosse un affare privato. Questo non è affatto vero. Penso che potremo andare molto, molto lontano, se riusciremo a convincere tutti i Cattolici a farsi carico della salvezza del mondo intero.
Il mondo ha bisogno di essere salvato e deve essere ciascuno di noi a farlo.




Cantate …


Cantate Domino canticum novum. Cantate Domino omnis terra. Cantate Domino et benedicite nomini Ejus. Annuntiate de die in diem salutare Ejus.

Causa nostrae laetitiae




“We can believe what we choose. We are answerable for what we choose to believe”.
(John Henry Newman)



Pueris manus imponit

Iesus vero ait eis - Sinite parvulos, et nolite eos prohibere ad me venire - talium est enim regnum caelorum.




“There is another essential aspect of Christianity: the interior, the silent, the contemplative, in which hidden wisdom is more important than practical organizational science, and in which love replaces the will to get visible results”.
(Thomas Merton)



Lo Spirito Santo


Uno dei Suoi nomi è "Consolatore"!




Confession

Confession heals, confession justifies, confession grants pardon of sin. All hope consists in confession. In confession there is a chance for mercy. Believe it firmly. Do not doubt, do not hesitate, never despair of the mercy of God. Hope and have confidence in confession.




“Almeno sei volte durante gli ultimi anni mi sono trovato nella situazione di convertirmi senza esitazione al cattolicesimo, se non mi avesse trattenuto dal compiere il gesto azzardato l'averlo già fatto”.
(G.K. Chesterton)



"Whatsoever I have or hold, You have given me; I give it all back to You and surrender it wholly to be governed by your will. Give me only your love and your grace, and I am rich enough and ask for nothing more."

(St. Ignatius of Loyola - Spiritual Exercises, #234)



"Mia madre è stata veramente una martire; non a tutti Gesù concede di percorrere una strada così facile, per arrivare ai suoi grandi doni, come ha concesso a mio fratello e a me, dandoci una madre che si uccise con la fatica e le preoccupazioni per assicurarsi che noi crescessimo nella fede".
J.R.R. Tolkien scrisse queste parole nove anni dopo la morte di sua madre.






Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong. (1 Corinthians 16:13)




“Beati sarete voi quando vi oltraggeranno e perseguiteranno, e falsamente diranno di voi ogni male per cagion mia. Rallegratevi ed esultate perché grande è la vostra ricompensa nei cieli”.