“…The beloved of the LORD, he abides in safety beside him; He shelters him all day long; the beloved abides at his breast.” Deuteronomy 33:12
Lately it seems that people within the church have a lack a belief. I have sat through homilies in my life where a Priest has proclaimed there was no multiplication of loaves and fishes and there was no star of Bethlehem. I have read article after article recently where Bishops and Priests defy church teaching and call upon those who agree with church teaching to be fired from their jobs.
“Jesus said to them, ‘A prophet is not without honor except in his native place and among his own kin and in his own house.’ So he was not able to perform any mighty deed there, apart from curing a few sick people by laying his hands on them. He was amazed at their lack of faith.” Mark 6:4-6
I have stated before that a Priests mission is to Guard the Divine. They are also called to protect the souls in their care, yet it seems some disregard this duty as well. They want to allow reception of communion for non-Catholic spouses. I wonder if they forget, there is already a process for discernment of receiving the Eucharist for non-Catholics, it is called RCIA. And it is the model for the whole church, for it calls souls to conversion of heart and true unity. For Christ says;
“I am the good shepherd, and I know mine and mine know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I will lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that do not belong to this fold. These also I must lead, and they will hear my voice, and there will be one flock, one shepherd.” John 10:14-16
This oneness does not come from a false unity that disregards the law. It comes from embracing the fullness of truth.
“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.” Matthew 5:17
Bishops who do not try to convert souls, towards the fullness of the truth, are treading on dangerous ground with their own souls. If you train someone to receive Christ without true conversion of heart which requires unity with the church and her teachings you are culpable for teaching falsehood. We are commanded to bring them to truth.
“My brothers, if anyone among you should stray from the truth and someone bring him back, he should know that whoever brings back a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.” James 5:19-20
I can only come to one conclusion when I read these stories. The Spirit of Arius is alive and well. In an effort to bring Christ’s humanity to us, they are forgetting His Divinity. We all know Jesus took on our humanity. He did so to bring us Divinity and save us from our sins, not accommodate them. The job of the church and her leaders is to lift us toward the Divine, not let us wallow in sin or stay divided from unity with the truth.
“If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate to be with you always, the Spirit of truth, which the world cannot accept, because it neither sees nor knows it. But you know it, because it remains with you, and will be in you.” John 14:15-17
I think we all have seen persecution comes from the secular world towards us in the church. But what we didn’t expect was the persecution that would come from inside the church herself if you try to remain faithful to her teachings and live in love. But there are those who came before us who did know. Think Joan of Arc and Padre Pio. The church is going through a Passion.
“Before Christ’s second coming the Church must pass through a final trial that will shake the faith of many believers. The persecution that accompanies her pilgrimage on earth will unveil the ‘mystery of iniquity’ in the form of a religious deception offering men an apparent solution to their problems at the price of apostasy from the truth. The supreme religious deception is that of the Antichrist, a pseudo-messianism by which man glorifies himself in place of God and of his Messiah come in the flesh. – Catechism of the Catholic Church 675
So what do we do. Remain faithful and pray. Do not shoot poison arrows back when they get shot. Get on your knees and pray. It is precisely in these times we, the laity, must be fearless in speaking and living truth. This does not mean screaming at or attacking people with how “right” we are. It means remaining in love and peace as we live and speak.
The church holds the truth and the gates of hell shall not prevail. I have had two things happen in my prayer over the past year. The first is that God has shown me living water flowing from the altar at the consecration. HE IS THERE, renewing us with the Eucharistic Sacrifice. I also keep having the song, “Lord prepare me to be a sanctuary” play over and over in my head. The second thing I get shown is a Map that has apparition sites of where Mary appeared. I could not for the longest time figure out why I was shown this map. But the other day God whispered to me, “The apparition sites, they are where people go and live the way we should be living. When you go what you see is people praying, people going to Mass and people going to Confession.” They are living the Sacramental life.
Persecutors, whether inside the church or outside, whether a communist government or an age old heresy, we must know they can try take the Sacraments from us but they cannot take the Sacramental life in us. They cannot take the living water flows forth into us from these places. We can make this living water flow to the world. We must never cease praying for our Priests, Bishops, and the Pope. And we must know for sure that anyone who takes on Christ and His Mother, will not prevail.
Saint Athanasius, pray for us.
Susan, I see I started to leave this comment last week, but it seems I never posted it.
I’m sorry you’ve taken such a beating on this posting. It’s exactly what the post was all about, wasn’t it?
You’re such a good and faithful Catholic who loves the truth. I always enjoy your blog and your constant search for the God of Truth and the Truth of God.
May He reward you with a constant outpouring of His Love and grace.
These are treacherous times of great confusion and I am seeing “on the ground” among Catholics evideonce of this great confusion. It breaks my heart.
We simply can’t be silent anymore…souls are at stake, and God’s own teaching is being tossed aside as irrelevant. You yourself have suffered in this way simply trying to protect your own son.
A dear friend of ours was concerned about her niece who is divorced and remarried civilly outside the Church. And when she saw her recently at a gathering she tried to enlighten her niece regarding her situation to see what could be done for the good of her soul. Her niece chided her and said “Oh Aunt Ellen, are you more Catholic than the Pope?! We’re fine!”
The ability of priests and Catholics everywhere to lead souls back to the path of God’s laws has been utterly neutralized and countered by what is happening in the Church in the name of Amoris Laetitia. This can’t be denied by involved Catholics.
Catholics cannot cover their eyes and ears and mouth and pretend not to see what is happening without defending the honor and truth of God. It was the Catholic laity who rose up during the Arian heresy to restore the Church to the path of Orthodoxy. And it seems it will again be the laity….
But….all that is only efficacious if we also pray and immolate ourselves each day through sacrifice and perfect obedience to the will of God in each moment.
I know you do that. ….let’s keep at it, and also be ready to speak when the good of souls and the honor of God requires it.
Lastly, I just wanted to share the direct link to the article in the Four Marks of the Church – the classical teaching on the nature of the Church and how Our Lord constituted it.
May God bless you for your fidelity!
Thanks Marie. I actually deleted all the other comments. Be at peace and pray hope and don’t worry! Thanks for the article.
Raymond Arroyo on The World Over at EWTN this past Thursday, March 1, raises your exact same point. If you follow EWTN you may have seen it already.
Arroyo observes that the German Bishops who are opening up the reception of Holy Communion to Protestant spouses do not direct them to the RCIA programs in their parishes, but provide “another” approach without definitive formation and conversion to the Catholic Faith.
Cardinal Mueller, former Prefect for the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, has publicly censured this practice as an abuse and contrary to Catholic teaching and discipline.
Unfortunately, it will spread throughout the Church unabated unless the Holy Father forbids it in cases where the spouses have not pursued formal instruction and conversion to the Catholic Faith.
Here is the link to that commentary followed by an interview with Philip Lawler on the same and related topics to your post concerning confusion and loss of faith among the faithful.
Thanks I will take a look.
Please do not be discouraged. You are doing good and Marie is correct. My mom always says when you are doing something right before God that is important for God’s Kingdom that Satan and his servants will kick up a fuss.
You have been on fire with the Holy Spirit in these last several postings, as is your friend Ashly Blackburn.
In this particular column you got to the point in a most charitable manner, without any finger pointing, name calling, screeching, etc.. I never saw the other comments, but I ask God to bless those folks.
May you and yours, Ashley and all your spiritual pals continue to have a blessed and fruitful Lent. I used to hate this time of year, but not it is a time of joy for me. The Lord has scourged my pride and continues to do so, providing me strong spiritual medicine to cure the wounds I have inflicted on myself over the years. May all embrace the healing balm of Lent!
Thanks James. God Bless you. I deleted the comments because they had what I considered to be calumny in them. Unjust accusations. And yes all of us need prayer. I love Lent. I will say a prayer for you today.
Susan, I didn’t realize (and perhaps you already know) there is an entire entry in Wikipedia on Father Thomas Weinandy and his considerable and impressive credentials.
Pope Francis appointed him to the International Theological Commission in 2014 given his widely recognized excellence in this field. Thus it was with considerable personal angst and regret that he eventually had to publish his concerns for the Universal Church.
I am aware. Thank you Marie.
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