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The Lord Never Disappoints...

Posted on Sep 22, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Our blog today is an excerpt from Franciscan Media’s new book The Spirit of Saint Francis: Inspiring Words from Pope Francisedited by Alicia von Stamwitz.

In listening to what John the Baptist says, who bears witness to Jesus as the Savior, our confidence in Jesus should grow. Many times we trust a doctor: this is good, because the doctor is there to cure us. We trust in a person: this too is good, because brothers and sisters can help us. It is good to have this human trust among ourselves. But we forget about trust in the Lord: this is the key to success in life. Trust in the Lord, let us trust in the Lord!…

Listen carefully, young people, who are just beginning life now: Jesus never disappoints. Never. This is the testimony of John: Jesus, the good One, the meek One, will end as a lamb, who is slain. Without crying out. He came to save us, to take away sin. Mine, yours and that of the whole world: all of it, all of it.

And now I invite you to do something: let us close our eyes, let us imagine the scene on the banks of the river, John as he is baptizing and Jesus who is approaching. And let us listen to John’s voice: “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.” Let us watch Jesus and, in silence, each one of us, say something to Jesus from his or her heart. In silence.

“Your sins are great? Just tell the Lord: Forgive me, help me to get up again, change my heart!”
–Pope  Francis

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Photo by Jakub Krechowicz / Shutterstock

 

The post The Lord Never Disappoints appeared first on American Catholic Blog.

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The Lord Never Disappoints...

Posted on Sep 22, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Our blog today is an excerpt from Franciscan Media’s new book The Spirit of Saint Francis: Inspiring Words from Pope Francisedited by Alicia von Stamwitz.

In listening to what John the Baptist says, who bears witness to Jesus as the Savior, our confidence in Jesus should grow. Many times we trust a doctor: this is good, because the doctor is there to cure us. We trust in a person: this too is good, because brothers and sisters can help us. It is good to have this human trust among ourselves. But we forget about trust in the Lord: this is the key to success in life. Trust in the Lord, let us trust in the Lord!…

Listen carefully, young people, who are just beginning life now: Jesus never disappoints. Never. This is the testimony of John: Jesus, the good One, the meek One, will end as a lamb, who is slain. Without crying out. He came to save us, to take away sin. Mine, yours and that of the whole world: all of it, all of it.

And now I invite you to do something: let us close our eyes, let us imagine the scene on the banks of the river, John as he is baptizing and Jesus who is approaching. And let us listen to John’s voice: “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.” Let us watch Jesus and, in silence, each one of us, say something to Jesus from his or her heart. In silence.

“Your sins are great? Just tell the Lord: Forgive me, help me to get up again, change my heart!”
–Pope  Francis

*****

Photo by Jakub Krechowicz / Shutterstock

 

The post The Lord Never Disappoints appeared first on American Catholic Blog.

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Pope Francis: Our Spiritual Guide...

Posted on Sep 21, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

On March 13, 2013, Pope Francis caught the world’s attention by choosing St. Francis of Assisi as his patron. He quickly showed what that means for him: riding the bus with the cardinals back to the Domus Sanctae Marthae (where he has chosen to live) and paying his own bill at the hotel where he stayed before the conclave. A few months later, he carried a small bag onto the plane for his trip to World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro.

On October 4, the pope visited Assisi and, in effect, explained how St. Francis inspires him. Among his audience were the eight cardinals who had completed the first of several meetings to advise him about the reform of the Roman Curia and the governance of the worldwide Church.

At the bishop’s residence, in the room where Francis stripped himself of the clothes provided by his father, Pope Francis told a group of poor people assisted by Caritas: “The Christian cannot coexist with the spirit of the world, with the worldliness that leads us to vanity, to arrogance, to pride. And this is an idol; it is not God. It is an idol! And idolatry is the gravest of sins!”

Pope Francis continued: “And we all must strip ourselves of this worldliness: the spirit opposing the spirit of the Beatitudes, the spirit opposing the spirit of Jesus. Worldliness hurts us. . . . Spiritual worldliness kills! It kills the soul! It kills the person! Kills the Church!

“It is God’s strength that supported Francis’ renunciation,” said the pope. It was a renunciation of the spirit of the world, “the cancer of society and the enemy of Christ.”

Love Is Our Mission: Pope Francis in America is a rich collection drawn from Catholic News Service photographers and journalists to be released October 30. It will be a keepsake for anyone interested in the papal visit. Learn more about the book, and about Pope Francis’ visit, by clicking here.

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Photo: CNS/Paul Haring

 

The post Pope Francis: Our Spiritual Guide appeared first on American Catholic Blog.

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Not everything is “Rah! Rah! Francis!”, even i...

Posted on Sep 20, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

There is a lot of energy swirling around and about the Holy Father’s visit to Cuba and, soon, to these United States.  I’ve already heard MSM hype about how Francis is the pretty much the first Pope who has ever smiled or kiss a baby.  As a matter of fact, he is the first Pope who has ever thought about poor or who has been nice.  He is the most wonderfulest fluffiest Pope ehvur.  He’s not like mean old Benedict!  He was harsh and Francis is humble!

This is going to get really tiresome.

Meanwhile, not everything is “Rah! Rah! Francis!”, even in the MSM.  It is good to know what they are saying as well.

First, check out George Will at WaPo.  All I can say is brutal.   His piece seems to be a preemptive strike not just against Francis and what he might say to Congress and to the UN about environmentalism and capitalism, but against the lib dems who will try to coopt Francis for cynical political reasons.   The libs will accuse Will of shilling for the GOP, but I don’t think that that is what he is doing.

Pope Francis’ fact-free flamboyance

Pope Francis embodies sanctity but comes trailing clouds of sanctimony. With a convert’s indiscriminate zeal, he embraces ideas impeccably fashionable, demonstrably false and deeply reactionary. They would devastate the poor on whose behalf he purports to speak — if his policy prescriptions were not as implausible as his social diagnoses are shrill.

[…]

Pretty rough stuff.

We don’t, by the way, have to accept Will’s simplification of the science and Gallileo issue or about medieval economies.

Next comes something from the Weekly Standard by Jonathan V. Last.

Pope Francis: Menace or Farce?

Back in 1999, The Weekly Standard ran one of my favorite cover lines ever: The New Europe: Menace or Farce? I often think of that question when I watch Pope Francis.

It’s only been two and a half years since Francis assumed the chair of St. Peter, yet he’s already compiled an entire dossier’s worth of . . . interesting . . . incidents.

For instance, the Holy Father seems to have a habit of appearing to endorse all sorts of left-wing political causes. There was the time he posed with environmental activists holding an anti-fracking T-shirt. And the time he posed for pictures holding a crucifix made from a hammer and a sickle. And the time he held up a poster calling for the British to hand the Falkland Islands back to Argentina. In each instance, the official Vatican response has been to suggest that Francis didn’t mean to endorse anything because he’ll pretty much smile and pick up anything you hand him, like some sort of consecrated Ron Burgundy.

[…]

While this piece also indicts the Pope’s handlers, the bucks land on the Pontiff’s desk.

Anyway… it is good to know what else is going on, apart from the cloying sweet stuff.

The moderation queue is definitely ON.

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SSPX not in schism...

Posted on Sep 19, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

Michael Voris and his initiative Church Militant have been militating pretty hard these days against the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX – a society of priests, not lay people, having a less than perfect canonical status).

Michael is pushing hard that the SSPX is schismatic.

I have been saying for years that the SSPX is not.  Canonically screwed up? Yes.  Schismatic? No.

So, in a recent piece (HERE) Voris provides the headline:

CM EXCLUSIVE: A Canon Lawyer Speaks on the SSPX
Former canonist for Holy See confirms Society is in material schism

But if you read that piece, which is an interview with a good canonist, Marc Balestrieri, you find that you could post the headline:

Former canonist for Holy See confirms Society is not in de iure schism

Material schism is vague.  Maybe they are in material schism.  Maybe they aren’t.  Formal schism, on the other hand, is not fuzzy.  I think we should throw “schism” around and about the heads of the SSPX, even though we don’t want to minimize that they are in a decidedly bad canonical situation and confusion surrounds their status.

Some excerpts:

It is the more probable opinion among approved authors that refusal of obedience of a Catholic to the Pope which is not predicated upon a rejection of the principle of his authority as Roman Pontiff as Caput Romanae Ecclesiae constitutes material, not formal schism. However, if those lay faithful receiving the Sacraments from them at any one point in time also severed themselves entirely from, or refused submission in principle to, the Roman Pontiff and per can. 1330 of the Code of Canon Law manifested in word or in deed externally such actions, then they are presumed to have descended into formal schism.

I don’t think SSPX members or followers do that. At least the sane one’s don’t.

The Prefect’s use of the term de facto emphasizes the factual divide in communion between the Holy See and the SSPX Bishops. If he had intended to emphasize clearly the existence of formal schism on their part, he most likely would have employed the term de iure given the context of the assertion.

The absence of the use of such term on his part, however, does nothing to mitigate the gravity of the material schism by which souls are at grave risk of not being saved for as long as the situation perdures.

Agreed.  The SSPX is canonically screwed up.  But they are not formally schismatic.

Concerning the invalidly of absolution involves, he explains what “common error” is and what it isn’t.

SSPX priests are presumed at Universal Law only to possess jurisdiction or the faculty to absolve from sin in two exceptional circumstances.  First, pursuant to the norm of can. 976, “Any priest, even though he lacks the faculty to hear confessions, can validly and lawfully absolve any penitents who are in danger of death, from any censures and sins, even if an approved priest is present.” “Any priest” according to this norm would include validly ordained SSPX priests. Second, in conformity with the norm of can. 144, § 1, whenever (1) Common Error of Fact or Law and (2) Positive and Probable Doubt of Fact or Law have been verified to exist in a certain fact pattern, the Church “supplies” a iure universali the faculty required for SSPX priests to absolve from sins validly. “Error” in this norm means a state of erroneous judgment; “doubt” in this canon means a grave, positive and probable doubt asserted by numerous doctors of Canon Law of unimpaired reputation extant on the part of the SSPX priest acting as confessor.

While canonists find no controversy in the assertion that SSPX priests who are validly ordained and not otherwise impeded have the faculty to absolve the faithful from sin in danger of death of a penitent (cf. can. 976), the jurisprudence of the Roman Rota does provide some rare official light into the other question of whether SSPX priests possess the jurisdiction required to witness marriage validly.

The canonist lays out really well the situation of priests of the SSPX and that they don’t possess faculties (right now) validly to absolve and they cannot witness marriages (thus, making them invalid because of lack of form. He explains that judgments of the Church’s highest tribunal on marriage has consistently ruled that the marriages were invalid because SSPX priests cannot witness marriages.

The thrust here is that the judgments of the Roman Rota has found SSPX marriages invalid because of lack of form.  This provides a parallel for understanding also that the SSPX also don’t have faculties to hear confessions.  “Error” of judgment is excluded, because the teaching of the Holy See has been clear.  “Doubt” is excluded because canonists are in line.

Canon 144 only refers to the Church supplying “potestatem regiminis executivam”, the “executive power of governance”.

Keeping with confession as an example, and one that involves internal forum, can. 144 covers instances wherein a priest who lacks the faculty to hear confessions at all, or he just lacks them in a particular place or situation, nevertheless believes he has the faculty and the penitent also believes he does.   Thus, it doesn’t quite cover the situation of SSPX priests, who know very what proper authority as instructed about their state: they lack faculties.  They, however, do not obey proper authority.   They might honestly believe that they can receive confessions because of some state of “emergency” that the Church is in, but, intellectually, they know that the Church has told them that they don’t.  They aren’t ignorant of the facts, though they – even with sincerity – may not accept them.  Some lay people are up to date on the controversy, though most are not.

More HERE.

I thank Mr. Voris, because he laid out will with this interview many of the issues that plague the sacramental life of followers of the SSPX and he explodes the claim that the SSPX is formally schismatic.

I’ll repeat also what I have written may times.  I look forward to the complete reconciliation of the SSPX.  They have great contributions to make.  I also think that Pope Francis might be the one to resolve this formally.  It took Nixon to go to China.

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"And now let us begin this journey, the Bishop and people, this journey of the Church of Rome, which presides in charity over all the Churches, a journey of brotherhood in love, of mutual trust. Let us always pray for one another. Let us pray for the whole world that there might be a great sense of brotherhood.

I will now give my blessing to you and to the whole world, to all men and women of good will."

-Papa Francis quote

He does not know you, yet he prays for you.
He will most likely never meet you, yet he loves you.

This is your chance to show your love, for as the Bible teaches, "Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven."