The only downside to his appointment as auxiliary bishop for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles is the vacancy created at Mundelein Seminary. Bishop-elect Barron is one of the very few “celebrity” priests who I really, tremendously admire. His video series, Catholicism, is one of the masterpieces of the New Evangelization. He will be (I expect) a Courageous Bishop. Pray for him!
The Statement from the Archdiocese of Chicago:
I had the privilege and honor of being received into the Church along with my wife by Cardinal George at the Easter Vigil in 2000. He generously made time to visit our RCIA group when we were both candidates and later, as sponsors, and I was able to meet him and chat with him briefly several times. I was impressed by his brilliance, and humility. This is sad news.
A lot of good Chicago Catholics noticed his appearance on the Loggia of St. Peter’s after the election of Benedict XVI in 2005. His expression was described as pensive or anxious, and reporters later asked him what it was that he was feeling or thinking in the moment that he was caught on camera.
My recollection is that Cardinal George answered that looking out onto the square, he reflected how the various man-made institutions had come and faded into mere memory over the life of the Church — the Roman Empire, the various European kingdoms, and all the other great powers that at one point or another seemed virtually indestructible. “Where are they now?”, he asked. Only the Church survived when other forces appeared so much more unstoppable.
This answer never put an end to speculation that he had received some votes in the conclave, enough to pray for Benedict to have a long pontificate. By any stretch, it would have been amazing for an American cardinal to receive any votes, much less a block of them. If true, by the time of the 2013 conclave he most likely was more serene, aware that his cancer and age would save him from such a burden. But a number of Chicago Catholics, including myself, would not have been dismayed at all, but rather delighted (and confident in the Holy Spirit’s guidance) with a Pope George.
A group of eight California legislators, Democrats, sent this absurdity to the Archbishop this week. It’s cloaked in euphemism and makes no logical sense. In response, His Excellency sent this, and says:
…would you hire a campaign manager who advocates policies contrary to those that you stand for, and who shows disrespect toward you and the Democratic Party in general? On the other hand, if you knew a brilliant campaign manager who, although a Republican, was willing to work for you and not speak or act in public contrary to you or your party – would you hire such a person? If your answer to the first question is “no,” and to the second question is “yes,” then we are actually in agreement on the principal point in debate here.
Now let’s say that this campaign manager you hired, despite promises to the contrary, starts speaking critically of your party and favorably of your running opponent, and so you decide to fire the person. Would you have done this because you hate all Republicans outright, or because this individual, who happens to be a Republican, violated the trust given to you and acted contrary to your mission? If the latter, then we are again in agreement on this principle.
My point is: I respect your right to employ or not employ whomever you wish to advance your mission. I simply ask the same respect from you.
Exactly. Courageous bishops. We need them, and they need our prayers. And the Archbishop deserves our support and three “Huzzahs” for defending Catholic identity in the most vitriolic and pagan region of the country. He’s holding the line against powerful forces that do not fight clean. They don’t just want to win; they want to destroy. Thanks be to God, for Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI (who appointed the Archbishop), and for Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone.
The Bishops are making their voices heard at the Synod on the Family. That midway Relatio is going to need to be substantially rewritten, they say. And, the English version apparently suffers from some “problems in translation.”
Keep breathing and keep praying.
You’re in good company. Read this. Pray. Maybe even fast a little. Go to the Sacraments. Confession. Mass. Breathe. This isn’t about doctrine. This is about pastoral approach.
“Thou art Peter, and upon this Rock I will build my Church, and the gates of Hell will not prevail against it.”
It’s a very telling sign of the times that in the past year, Satanists are now openly conducting “black masses”. First was the one a few months ago in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and this Saturday there is one scheduled in a civic auditorium in Oklahoma City, where a consecrated host was to be used until the Archbishop filed a lawsuit against the Satanic church to recover it.
A black mass is an “inversion” of the Catholic mass. It should be somewhat shocking to us that some Satanists have more faith in the Real Presence than Catholics do; a black mass isn’t truly one without a consecrated host. The demons who surround these Satanists know what they are doing and they know who and what they attack by what they do.
This should tell us something about Catholicism. When Satan or one of his minions attempts to mock Christ, their primary action is not to take the Bible and stomp on it. They don’t steal water from the Baptist church and pee in it. They don’t abscond with tracts from the Jehovah’s Witnesses and deface them. They don’t sneak into Mormon temples and make off with their special garments for use in Satanic rituals.
Satanists steal the Eucharist, the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ, which they desecrate in a variety of ways during their “black mass”.
Satan, his demons, and those people he imprisons to serve him on earth know that the Church has the authority to send evil back to Hell. Satan and his demons must respect the Church’s authority, because her authority comes from Jesus himself.
In Matthew 16:19, Jesus gives authority over his Church to St. Peter, the first pope: “Whatever you bind on Earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on Earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Jesus gives the power to all the apostles at 18:18: “Amen, I say to you, whatever you bind on Earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on Earth shall be loosed in heaven.”
Jesus “cast out the spirits with his word, and he healed all that were sick” (Matthew 8:16). Sometimes Jesus exorcised from a distance (Matthew 15:22; Mark 7:25). Sometimes the demons recognized Him as “the Holy One of God” (Mark 1:24). He gave the Apostles the authority to cast out demons in His name. (Matthew 10:1 and 8; Mark 6:7; Luke 9:1; 10:17).
Consider this article concerning Tulsa exorcist Monsignor Patrick Brankin, who was appointed the exorcist for the Diocese of Tulsa about four years ago. Before he was appointed, he was asked to investigate a case because the diocese “was unable to find an exorcist to handle it”. Msgr. Brankin went to visit the afflicted person “even though he had not yet been appointed as an exorcist.” On the first visit:
He found the person crouched in a corner of a room.
Brankin said the demon in the person immediately recognized him as a priest, without looking at him, and pronounced smugly that it knew Brankin had not been given the authority to exorcise it.
“That scared me,” Brankin said. [I’ll bet it did. Imagine sharing a room with a powerful, unknown malevolence that knows there’s nothing you can do.]
Months later, after undergoing exorcism training in Rome, working with an experienced exorcist, and being “given faculties” (commissioned) as an exorcist, Brankin returned. This time, he said, the demon said it knew he had been given faculties and feared him.
The victim was successfully exorcised and is living a healthy Christian life, Brankin said.
Demons don’t fear priests on their own; but a priest who acts under the authority of his bishop — a successor of the Apostles — is to be feared, because it is the same authority that Jesus gave and it can send a demon straight back to Hell.
If Authority granted by Jesus to the Church compels obedience by demons and Satan himself, what can we say when tasked with obedience to the Church ourselves? Shall we dissent? Shall it be the same “Non serviam” uttered by Lucifer?
In contrast to angels and demons (i.e., fallen angels), we humans are capable of disobeying God and the authority granted His Church, because God gives us that freedom. But He gives us freedom so that we might “choose the good”; He will hold us accountable for how we use the freedom He gives.
On the whole Pope Francis/Card. Bergoglio and Bishop Tony Palmer controversy. My suspicion (without basis of any kind) is that Bishop Palmer must have done and said quite enough to Francis to indicate that he already was a Catholic: a believer in the True Presence, affirming the primacy of the Bishop of Rome, etc., etc., but that there was a most fruitful way for that conversion to publicly unfold, which did not come about due to his tragic death.
He’s the Pope! How can you assume what happened behind closed doors?
And Joy, and the New Evangelization:
Joy cannot be found in falsehood. A Jesus of our own invention cannot save. The true Jesus has risen from the dead. Free from all limitations, he acts now through the sacraments of the church. This is the connection between evangelization and Eucharist. We preach a Eucharistic Christ.
Read the rest, here.
Pray for His Eminence, and for his successor.
Springfield Bishop Thomas Paprocki is a stalwart, courageous — and by all accounts, holy — pastor of his flock in Springfield. A few months ago he supported denying communion to pro-abortion Illinois senator Richard Durbin. He condemned the offensive attempt to simulate the ordinations of certain “Roman Catholic Womenpriests” at a protestant church within his diocese and declared that certain of the participants were thereby excommunicated Latae Sentiatae.
Most recently he issued a pastoral letter on a subject very dear to me and countless other Catholics: restoring the placement of the Tabernacle of the Most Blessed Sacrament to a place of prominence in all churches and oratories under his jurisdiction. Check out his letter, entitled Ars celebrandi et adorandi:
…I direct that in the churches and chapels of our diocese, tabernacles that were formerly in the center of the sanctuary, but have been moved, are to be returned as soon as possible to the center of the sanctuary in accord with the original architectural design. Tabernacles that are not in the center of the sanctuary or are otherwise not in a visible, prominent and noble space are to be moved to the center of the sanctuary; tabernacles that are not in the center of the sanctuary but are in a visible, prominent and noble space may remain.
Huzzah! Huzzah! Three Huzzahs for His Excellency, Bishop Paprocki! May the Lord plumb the depths of his humble service and draw him into even greater sacrifices for the Faith by elevating him as metropolitan Archbishop of Chicago. Amen.
Great news and further confirmation today from Vatican Radio:
“It is must be therefore reiterated the strongest opposition to any direct attack on life, especially innocent and defenseless life, and the unborn child in the womb is the most concrete example of innocence,” said Pope Francis. “Let us remember the words of the Second Vatican Council: From the moment of its conception, life must be guarded with the greatest care while abortion and infanticide are unspeakable crimes.” ( Gaudium et Spes, 51).
and [in a different address on the same day],
Pope Francis said “…that it is every child’s right to grow up in a family ‘with a father and a mother’ capable of creating ‘a suitable environment for the child’s development and emotional maturity’. The Pope also called for an end to what he termed as ‘educational experiments’ with children and young people, pushing a ‘dictatorship of one form of thinking’ on them in the name of a pretended ‘modernity’.”
Huzzah for His Holiness, Pope Francis!