ASK FATHER: Why should I remain Catholic when the Church doesn’t seem to believe her own message?

From a reader…

Why should I remain Catholic and believe the Catholic Church’s, when the Church HERSELF doesn’t even seem to believe In her own message?

I attend Mass with my family weekly, mostly to maintain spiritual harmony in our home. However, I sit in the pew of the modern parish, stoic and silent. I am essentially non-practicing. I have to say that the ecumenical lovefest in Lund was the final nail in my Catholic coffin

I am getting emails like this with greater frequency.


With the recent comments of the Holy Father about young persons and the Latin Mass…as a young person it hurt me immensely and at times has made me feel as if I have no place in the Church and limited to doubts. Pray for me. Any advice you have would be greatly appreciated. All I want to do is be faithful to the Catholic Church, that is all I want, but things seem so dark lately. I am doing my best, I go to Mass and Confession every week. … Pray for a strengthening in my faith, I don’t want to doubt, and I don’t want to fear about the Pope. This is all foolishness on my part, but I ask for prayers on my behalf. That I can be faithful to the Church ALWAYS. I understand a response might not be possible, I know you are busy, but prayers are all I ask for.

How to respond?

First things first:

Brethren, be strengthened in the Lord, and in the might of his power. Put you on the armour of God, that you may be able to stand against the deceits of the devil. For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood; but against principalities and power, against the rulers of the world of this darkness, against the spirits of wickedness in the high places. Therefore take unto you the armour of God, that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and to stand in all things perfect. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of justice, And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace: In all things taking the shield of faith, wherewith you may be able to extinguish all the fiery darts of the most wicked one. And take unto you the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit (which is the word of God). By all prayer and supplication praying at all times in the spirit; and in the same watching with all instance and supplication for all the saints: And for me, that speech may be given me, that I may open my mouth with confidence, to make known the mystery of the gospel. For which I am an ambassador in a chain, so that therein I may be bold to speak according as I ought.

These words from Ephesians speak to me today in a special ringing way.  I’ve determined that I need to make a few changes to my own prayer life in order to deal with this onslaught, which weighs heavily on my mind and heart.

Now, let me speak as I ought.

We are living in very strange times, in which many things seem upside down.  The Enemy can take advantage of our disorientation to urge us in directions which, in more stable days, we would never consider.

Does anyone here really think that the Devil is not roaming the earth like a roaring lion seeking whom he might devour?  I firmly believe that.  It is the sole goal of the Enemy to steal souls from heaven so that God will have just that much less glory, that there will be just that much less joy.  Therefore, the Enemy will target the Church that Christ founded, through whose mediation every soul is saved.

Never underestimate the savagely cruel, relentlessly clever work of the Enemy of our souls.  When I signed up, when I became a Catholic, I committed to what I was in for… though you never really know what you are in for, until you are actually in it.

“But things are going so wrong now!”, some say.

In the satirical writings, dialogues, of the 14th c. Italian author Boccaccio there is story about a Jew who has to go to Rome for something.  The local Bishop has been trying to get the Jew to convert the Christianity.  Knowing the Jew was about to see the Church at its worst in Rome, the corruption and moral turpitude of many of the clerics and religious, even Popes like the Borgias, the Bishop despaired that the Jew would ever covert on his return.   However, once returned from his trip, the Jew went to the Bishop and said, “I’m ready to convert now!”  The Bishop, flabbergasted, replied, “You went to Rome and you saw how horrid things were there… and you still want to join this Church?”  “Yes”, said the Jew. “I figure that with so many wicked and corrupt people hard at work trying to destroy the Church, it shouldn’t have lasted 14 years, much less 14 centuries.  It has to be of divine origin!”

The Catholic Church was founded by Jesus Christ.  That fact alone should be compelling enough for us even in our darkest moments of doubts.  If Christ founded it, why would we ever want to be anywhere else?

He founded the Church and gave His own authority to her to teach, to govern and to sanctify.  He gave her the ordinary means of our salvation in the Sacraments He instituted.  When we pray in our sacred liturgical worship, Christ Himself is praying with our voices, gesturing with our hands in intimate unity with us through our baptismal character.

If we see someone wounded, we run fast to help.  We open our veins to give blood in times of emergency.

If we see people who are on fire or being attacked, we run towards the gunfire, towards the blaze.

Let’s now gird ourselves for battle.

Some of you will be in the front lines where the clash is.  Some will be in the supporting ranks, where the binding of wounds takes place.  Some will be on supply lines.  Some will provide QRF.  Some will be on oversight.  Some will provide command and control.  We all have to step up and own who we are as Catholics and own our vocations.  We must own our missions and our roles.  If we focus on our individual pain we won’t serve our cause well.

Let us be warriors together, not worriers separated.

Posted in ¡Hagan lío!, "How To..." - Practical Notes, Cri de Coeur, Hard-Identity Catholicism, Our Catholic Identity, Semper Paratus, The Coming Storm, The Drill, The future and our choices, Wherein Fr. Z Rants | Tagged | 70 Comments

New US Cardinals respond, and don’t, to questions about Five Dubia of Four Cardinals

From LifeSite comes a piece by John Henry Weston about how the new US Cardinals reacted to questions about the Five Dubia submitted by the Four Cardinals.  HERE

Card. Farrell roughly pushed away a reporters hand with a recorder.



Cardinal Joseph Tobin, however, was ready with answers for The Tablet on the same question. In remarks very similar to those of new Cardinal Blase Cupich, [coordination?] Tobin called the Dubia to the Pope by the four Cardinals “troublesome” and said, “The Holy Father is capturing the work of two synods, so if four cardinals say that two synods were wrong, or that somehow the Holy Father didn’t reflect what was said in those synods, I think that should be questioned.”  [Okay… let’s question that for a moment.  First, it is interesting that the argument offered so closely connects Amoris laetitia to the Synod, rather than just the Holy Father.  I think a couple critics of AL made that point when they wondered whether or not it was a Magisterial document.  Also, just because a Synod offers items to the Roman Pontiff for his consideration, the Roman Pontiff is in no way bound to accept them as they were offered.  If he wants to write an Apostolic Exhortation, he can say in it anything it pleases him to say.  He can follow the Synod’s lead or not.  It should also be remarked that the Synod itself seems not to know what the Synod was saying, given the way that the first Synod was jacked around.  Confusion reigned over the Synod.  Confusion is in Amoris laetitia.  A reasonable and fair reading of AL reveals confusing points.]

Adding that the matters dealt with in Amoris Laetitia were complex, Tobin quipped, “just to simply reduce it to a ‘dubium,’ I think it is at best naive.” [Well… when one reads the dubia there is nothing naive or simplistic about them.  They are thoughtful, pointed, deep.]

Cardinal Cupich answered the National Catholic Register’s Edward Pentin on the matter, saying of Amoris Laetitia: “The document that they are having doubts about are the fruits of two synods, and the fruit of propositions that were voted on by two-thirds of the bishops who were there.”  [So?  This is a Synod, not a Council. Synods have no authority.  2/3 majority?  So?  This is an advisory body.  Also, if I recall an advisory body created by Paul VI recommended by a majority something that the Pope rejected, and rightly so.  The Five Dubia are not about the work of the Synod.  The Five Dubia are about questionable points in Amoris laetitia.   However, please note that it is hard to convey complete thoughts in a press conference to directly to a reported when placed on the spot.]

Cupich added, “I think that if you begin to question the legitimacy or what is being said in such a document, do you throw into question then all the other documents that have been issued before by the other popes. [I don’t see why that should be so.  It is one thing to read a document with clearly taught doctrine and, as a dissenter, disagree with it.  It is another to read a document that is hard to understand and, as a faithful Catholic, desire to know the Truth.] So I think it’s not for the pope to respond to that, it’s a moment for anyone who has doubts to examine how they got to that position because it is a magisterial document of the Catholic Church.”


If it is document of the Magisterium, then people should have a right to ask questions about it.




Posted in One Man & One Woman, Our Catholic Identity, The Coming Storm, The Drill | Tagged , , | 40 Comments

Act of Consecration of the Human Race to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Since the time of Pius XI’s Quas primas in 1925, the following was to be recited on the Feast of Christ the King, which in the traditional calendar falls on the last Sunday of October.   In the new-fangled calendar it is the last Sunday of the liturgical year.

There’s nothing wrong with saying this prayer on other days!

Act of Consecration of the Human Race to the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Most Sweet Jesus, Redeemer of the human race, look down upon us humbly prostrate before Thine altar. We are Thine, and Thine we wish to be; but to be more surely united to Thee, behold each one of us freely consecrates ourselves today to Thy Most Sacred Heart.

Many indeed have never known Thee; Many too, despising Thy precepts, have rejected Thee. Have mercy on them all, most merciful Jesus, and draw them to Thy Sacred Heart. Be Thou King, O Lord, not only of the faithful children, who have never forsaken Thee, but also of the prodigal children, who have abandoned Thee; Grant that they may quickly return to their Father’s house lest they die of wretchedness and hunger.

Be Thou King of those who are deceived by erroneous opinions, or whom discord keeps aloof, and call them back to the harbor of truth and unity of faith, so that there may be but one flock and one Shepherd.

Be Thou King of all those who are still involved in the darkness of idolatry or of Islamism, and refuse not to draw them into the light and kingdom of God. Turn Thine eyes of mercy towards the children of the race, once Thy chosen people: of old they called down upon themselves the Blood of the Savior; may it now descend upon them a laver of redemption and of life.

Grant, O Lord, to Thy Church assurance of freedom and immunity from harm; give peace and order to all nations, and make the earth resound  from pole to pole with one cry; praise to the Divine Heart that wrought our salvation; To it be glory and honor forever.

R. Amen.

Posted in ¡Hagan lío!, ACTION ITEM!, Hard-Identity Catholicism | Tagged , , | 7 Comments

A parish TURNS TOWARD THE LORD for Advent

16_07_20_TSHIRT_ENG_01 copyI had a note from a priest that St. Joseph the Worker in Berkeley, CA is going ad orientem as of Advent.

What I found most interesting, is something that the pastor wrote to the people before he gets into explanations of the changes.  Here is something from his bulletin.  I had to capture it:

Screen Shot 2016-11-22 at 07.26.35

I’ve heard this again and again.  There is a knock on effect when the priest knows what he is about. He communicates it through his ars celebrandi.  The congregation and priest support each other mutually.  People come from all over.  The average age of parishioners starts to drop because young families are coming.

And they want the Catholic Faith, unadulterated by cowardice.

Posted in Liturgy Science Theatre 3000, Mail from priests, Turn Towards The Lord | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Some clarity about the faculty Francis gave priests to “absolve the sin of abortion”

Artgate_Fondazione_Cariplo_-_Molteni_Giuseppe,_La_confessione 945At CNN we find a story about how Pope Francis extended to priests indefinitely the ability to absolve the sin of abortion. He had hitherto given it only for the Year of Mercy, which is now closed.

(CNN)Pope Francis has extended indefinitely the power of Catholic priests to forgive abortions, making the announcement in an apostolic letter released Monday.

It continues a special dispensation granted last year for the duration of the Year of Mercy — which finished Sunday — which gave all priests, rather than just bishops and specially designated confessors, the power to absolve the sin of abortion.
While the practical effect of Francis’ announcement remains unclear, it draws attention to the prevailing theme of his papacy: That the doors of the Church must remain open, just as God’s forgiveness and mercy extend to all those who repent from sin.
That said, the Catholic Church’s stance on abortion has not changed — it is still viewed as a “grave sin.” But it makes it easier for women who have had abortions to be absolved for their actions, and rejoin the church. [They are still in the Church.  But if they have incurred the sin of excommunication, they may not be absolved or receive Communion.  The censure must be lifted.  Then they may be absolved and they can go to Communion.  Meanwhile, they are still obliged to all the things other Catholics are obliged to, including going to Mass on days of obligation.]
“I wish to restate as firmly as I can that abortion is a grave sin, since it puts an end to an innocent life,” the Pope’s letter states.
“In the same way, however, I can and must state that there is no sin that God’s mercy cannot reach and wipe away when it finds a repentant heart seeking to be reconciled with the Father.
The letter continues: “May every priest, therefore, be a guide, support and comfort to penitents on this journey of special reconciliation.
“I henceforth grant to all priests, in virtue of their ministry, the faculty to absolve those who have committed the sin of procured abortion.”


Something needs to be made clear. Every time the issue of confession of the sin of successfully procured abortion comes up, something needs to be made clear.

Priests have long had the power to forgive the sin of abortion. However, procuring an abortion incurs also a censure of excommunication, which is to be absolved in a separate step. Canon law reserves the lifting of this particular excommunication to the bishop. Pope Francis extended this faculty to lift the excommunication to all priests. Most of the bishops in these USA have already given this faculty to their priests as a response to the growing numbers of abortions performed. That speeds up the reconciliation process many times.

ALSO… and this is important.  It is not just the women who go for the abortion who commit the sin and incur the censure.  Men involved can incur it.  Anyone directly involved can commit the sin and incur the censure.   There are many ways to participate in the sin of another person: 9 ways! You can be guilty of the sin committed by another

  1. By counsel (to give advice, one’s opinion or instructions.)
  2. By command (to demand, to order, such as in the military.)
  3. By consent (to give permission, to approve, to agree to.)
  4. By provocation (to dare.)
  5. By praise or flattery (to cheer, to applaud, to commend.)
  6. By concealment (to hide the action, to cover-up.)
  7. By partaking (to take part, to participate.)
  8. By silence (by playing dumb, by remaining quiet.)
  9. By defense of the ill done (to justify, to argue in favour.)

One can argue about how directly you must be involved to be guilty of the sin and also to incur the censure.  Paying?  Driving?  Urging?  Working in the clinic?  Etc.  However, if you have any doubts about your own state of participation in such a thing, you should find a good, solid confessor and put the whole thing to him in the context of sacramental confession or internal forum discussion.

You can see how the logic of lifting or absolving censures and absolving sins works by reviewing the older, traditional form of the words of absolution. The priest mentions censures before he absolves sins.

May our Lord Jesus Christ absolve you; and by His authority I absolve you from every bond of excommunication (suspension) [that “suspension” is used for clerics, in case they did something that incurred suspension a divinis] and interdict, so far as my power allows and your needs require. [making the Sign of the Cross:] Thereupon, I absolve you from your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son, + and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

“As far as my power allows” (i.e., if I have the faculty to absolve the thing you incurred… there’s an old adage “Nemo dat quod non ‘got’!” You can’t give what you don’t have.), “and your needs require”, (i.e., whatsoever thing you might have incurred).  This language covers all the bases.

The newer form of absolution does not mention censures. There are different forms a priest can use, if memory serves, provided in the Ordo Paenitentiae.

The Church had all this stuff about censures and sins worked out.

The moderation queue is ON.

Posted in Canon Law, Emanations from Penumbras, GO TO CONFESSION, Liturgy Science Theatre 3000 | Tagged , , | 16 Comments

Charges dropped against founder of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate

You all will remember the plight of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate (FFI). They have been under the heavy boot of the Congregation for Religious for a long time now.

In the horrid mix were also awful allegations that had been made against the founder of the FFIs, Fr. Stefano Manelli.

I just read a story which says that all the allegations and charges against him have been investigated by civil authorities and shelved by civil authorities. They dropped it. HERE

Now it remains to be seen whether or not the Congregation will in any way change its tune, or whether they will continue to make of the FFIs an example to take the heart out of traditionalists, Catholics driven mercilessly by libs to the peripheries.

Posted in Liberals, The Coming Storm, The future and our choices, The Last Acceptable Prejudice | Tagged , | 17 Comments

It’s “Stir Up Sunday”! What are your plans? – FOLLOW UP


So… what did y’all decide to do?

ORIGINALLY POSTED Published on: Nov 19, 2016 @ 04:02 Date and time


Tomorrow, 20 November, is the Last Sunday of the Church’s Liturgical Year. It is therefore…


The “stir up” comes from the first words of the traditional Collect at Mass of the Last Sunday of the Year.

Excita, quaesumus. Dómine, tuórum fidélium voluntátes: ut, divíni óperis fructum propénsius exsequéntes; pietátis tuæ remédia maióra percípiant.

Also, because you stir up the ingredients for your Christmas pudding on Stir Up Sunday, and steam it, so that it has adequate time to set before the big day.

In the meantime, some have asked about the image at the top.  Here is the whole chain, from a book I recall from my distant childhood, depicting “Max” preparing what I now at long last understand to be The Christmas Pudding!  As a kid I had always wondered what he was making.

Any resemblance to hamsters once on sidebars is entirely intentional.

MAX's Christmas Pudding

MAX's Christmas Pudding

MAX's Christmas Pudding

MAX's Christmas Pudding

MAX's Christmas Pudding

MAX's Christmas Pudding

MAX's Christmas Pudding

MAX's Christmas Pudding

MAX's Christmas Pudding

Posted in "How To..." - Practical Notes, Just Too Cool, What Fr. Z is up to | Tagged , | 27 Comments

Where do rights come from?

I spotted this at the Washington Examiner in a column by Cal Thomas:


“…the rights of man come not from the generosity of the state but from the hand of God.” (John F. Kennedy, Inaugural Address, January 20, 1961)

It isn’t often that a member of the media reveals the philosophy behind his political ideology, but last week, CNN anchor Chris Cuomo outed himself. In an exchange with Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore about  Moore’s refusal to adhere to a federal appellate judge’s order to ignore the state constitution and begin granting marriage licenses to same-sex couples, Moore said “…our rights contained in the Bill of Rights do not come from the Constitution, they come from God.”

Cuomo disagreed: “Our laws do not come from God, your honor, and you know that. They come from man.”

Obviously, Cuomo flunked civics. Does he really believe that man is responsible for bestowing rights, and can therefore take those rights away as he sees fit? That a right bestowed today by a governing body of mere mortals can be invalidated by another body, say, following an election? That my rights and yours are as fluid as quicksilver and dependent on who sits in the big chair in Washington?

It is not a new debate, but a debate worth renewing.


Read the rest there.

This tells you a lot about libs.

Posted in Liberals | 17 Comments

Christus vincit! Christus regnat! Christus imperat!

A friend sent me a little clip from the Brompton Oratory in London.   It is appropriate for this time at the end of the liturgical year and just before the beginning of another at Advent.

This is a beautifully sung Laudes Regiae, though a shortened version and with a variant melody.  It is still worth hearing.   The Laudes are regularly sung at the end of Pontifical Masses and other great occasions.  In history, the Laudes hearken back to ancient Rome, when people chanted the praises of a general in triumph.  They later were used during coronations.

No matter what we do to the Church, Christ remains Victor Rex, triumphant.



Another of you readers sent this from St. John Cantius in Chicago.

Posted in "How To..." - Practical Notes, Hard-Identity Catholicism, Liturgy Science Theatre 3000 | Tagged | 6 Comments

Pope Francis releases Apostolic Letter, renews faculties to absolve abortion, extends confession for SSPX

His Holiness Pope Francis has issued an Apostolic Letter for the close of the Year of Mercy. It is 6600 words long (excluding notes) and it is called Misericordia et misera, a phrase taken from Augustine’s commentaries on the Gospel of John. It has a Latin title, but the document was not released in Latin. There appears not to be a Latin version. As usual for this pontificate. It just so happens that the Latin title results from a quote in Latin.

In any event, the big news in this Letter is that the Pope extended the opportunity to people to go to confession to priests of the SSPX beyond the Year of Mercy.

He also gave all priests the faculty to absolve the sin… and resulting censure… of abortion.

The two concessions are worded in different ways. Let’s see.  He has ben talking about the Sacrament of Penance:

12. Given this need, lest any obstacle arise between the request for reconciliation and God’s forgiveness, I henceforth grant to all priests, in virtue of their ministry, the faculty to absolve those who have committed the sin of procured abortion. The provision I had made in this regard, limited to the duration of the Extraordinary Holy Year,[14] is hereby extended, notwithstanding anything to the contrary. [Note the language.  He writes in a nearly juridical style! “grant to all priests… the faculty… notwithstanding…”] I wish to restate as firmly as I can that abortion is a grave sin, since it puts an end to an innocent life. In the same way, however, I can and must state that there is no sin that God’s mercy cannot reach and wipe away when it finds a repentant heart seeking to be reconciled with the Father. May every priest, therefore, be a guide, support and comfort to penitents on this journey of special reconciliation.

For the Jubilee Year I had also granted that those faithful who, for various reasons, attend churches officiated by the priests of the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Pius X, can validly and licitly receive the sacramental absolution of their sins.[15] [Again… note the language.  He does not seem to grant the faculty to the priests.  Right?  In the paragraph above, he explicitly says he grants a faculty.  So, he knows how to do that.  Here, however, he says something else.  But wait… there’s more…] For the pastoral benefit of these faithful, and trusting in the good will of their priests to strive with God’s help for the recovery of full communion in the Catholic Church, I have personally decided to extend this faculty beyond the Jubilee Year, [Now he uses the word faculty.  But it remains that he started out talking about the faithful rather than the priests.  Right?] until further provisions are made, lest anyone ever be deprived of the sacramental sign of reconciliation through the Church’s pardon.

[14] Cf. Letter According to Which an Indulgence is Granted to the Faithful on the Occasion of the Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy, 1 September 2015.

[15] Cf. ibid.

In any event, Pope Francis went ahead and did it.   There does not seem to be an expiration date on the ability of people to go for valid absolution from SSPX priests.

Mind you… this settles the issue of valid sacramental confessions.   It does not settle the issue of valid marriages.  The priests of the SSPX are still not proper witnesses of the sacrament, thus not satisfying proper canonical form.

To all those who are attached to chapels of the SSPX…


Finally, I had in my mail more than one puzzled note about this extension of confession for the SSPX.  One of my correspondents, himself a well-known internet personage, wrote:

Your thoughts on my thoughts –

Two things are weird (or big looming issues) ..

1. WHY would the Pope do this? It makes no sense given all his critical comments about “tradition” and so forth?

2. Given the official reaction from the SSPX when their confessional faculties were restored – which is to say, “thanks, but we don’t need your blessing, Pope”, I find it hard to believe that whatever might be offered would be accepted.

Is someone really restored – if they themselves reject the olive branch? What does that look like?  Does Pope Francis and the cabal surrounding him simply say “it’s wonderful  to have you home”, when those very same people reject the N.O., Vatican II etc?

This whole thing is very weird.

It seems to me that Andrea Gagliarducci gets it pretty much right in todays Monday Vatican offering:

Finally, we can spot this rationale behind the alleged decision on the SSPX, [This was clearly written before the release of the text.] as the dialogue with the Lefevbrists has been dragging on for years. Pope Benedict XVI opened the dialogue by revoking the excommunication of the bishops illicitly ordained by Lefebvre, and kept the door open with the de-restriction of the older form of the Mass. In this way, Benedict took away from the traditionalists every excuse to avoid the dialogue. [Clearly it did not take away “every excuse”.]

After this, Benedict asked the traditionalists to accept some minimum requirement in order to re-enter into communion with Rome, starting from the acceptance of the Magisterium, including the Second Vatican Council. This remains an issue. If he’d make this decision, Pope Francis would go beyond doctrinal preambles, as his pragmatic solution would bring about only the recognition of the validity of confessions heard by priests of the SSPX. The rest will come.  [But wait!  There’s more!]

This rationale is also behind “Amoris Laetitia”, the much discussed post-synodal apostolic exhortation that followed two years of discussions in the two synods on the family. …


Creeping incrementalism.

The Pope seems to be trying to get things done by … not doing them.  That is, if you want to cook a living frog, you heat the water very slowly.  Right?  Picture vibrating table until a coffee cup bit by bit moves to the edge of a table.  By tiny and nearly imperceptible increments, it slides, it teeters, it falls, seemingly of its own accord!

Posted in ¡Hagan lío!, GO TO CONFESSION, SSPX | Tagged , , , | 56 Comments

REMINDER: CD of music for Advent by the Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles


We are now in the week following the last Sunday of the liturgical year.  Advent is heading towards us quickly.

Do you remember there is an album of Advent music available?  The wonderful Benedictine Nuns in the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph provide it.

Here are a few little samples.

There are zillions of Christmas music offerings out there.  Advent?  Not so much.

This disk can help you keep Advent as Advent.

The UK link is HERE.


Posted in The Campus Telephone Pole | Tagged , | 1 Comment

So far they’ve played 7 games…

… to a draw.

The World Chess Championship is on.  So far, Magnus Carlsen, the World Champion, and Sergey Karjakin, the challenger have played 7 games to 7 draws.

There for a moment in game 7 it looked like Carlsen had gotten himself into a pickle, but they agreed to draw after 34 moves and two hours of play.

It’s a nail-biter in New York City!

More HERE.

Game 8 will be Monday, Nov 21, at 2 PM EST. The game can be viewed live on, the official site of the match.

Posted in Just Too Cool | Tagged , | 3 Comments

A Bishop in Africa urges ‘ad orientem’ worship. A lib has a spittle-flecked nutty.

ORIENTEM_MUG_02You might remember Robert Mickens.  He used to be a correspondent for an ultra-liberal UK weekly The Pill (aka The Tablet).  He lost his position when, channeling his inner Icarus, he engaged in seriously nasty comments about Pope Benedict in social media, even wishing openly for his death.  That was a step too far even for The Pill.

Ever since, Mickens has been trying to hold on to some space in the catholic media, contributing here and there to lib catholic sites, baying about on Twitter, etc.

Speaking of baying on Twitter, Mickens had a little meltdown about a bishop in Africa.

Screen Shot 2016-11-19 at 23.50.11

Spittle-flecked nutty.

It may be that Mickens suffers from Acute Card. Sarah Derangement Syndrome, or perhaps from Chronic Orientitis.  Still, this seems a bit over the top.

Here’s the deal.

Archbishop Pascal N’Koue of the Archdiocese of Parakou in Benin issued a program of renewal for his diocese.  This is good and proper and exactly what bishops should do.  Of course, as I have been saying for years, no program of renewal will succeed unless there is a program to revitalize our sacred liturgical worship. Read his full program in French HERE.  If and when you do, you will see that he has taken to heart many things which Robert Card. Sarah has written and spoken about, e.g., silence… ad orientem worship.

Bishop N’Koue has asked that priests of the diocese, beginning on the 1st Sunday of Advent begin saying Holy Mass ad orientem.


Qu’est-ce qu’on abandonnera cette année pour le Christ ? Entre autres choses la messe face à facepour mieux goûter Dieu dans le silence.Les chorales élimineront progressivement les batteries qui font trop de bruit, “car chanter bien c’est prier deux fois”. On visitera les monastères.On fera revenir  certains gestes : au Confiteor, à l’Angélus, au Credo, au Gloria. On fera une révérence quand on passera devant un lieu saint, un calvaire, une statue de la Vierge ou de saint Joseph. On fera une génuflexion avant de communier,sauf ceux qui sont malades. Les prêtres apprendront à célébrer aussi avec le canon romain. On continuera de dire laprière pour les vocations. Mais le grand signe qui nous accompagnera toute l’année sera “la messe orientée”, vraie rupture pour un nouveau départ spirituel, et cela à partir du premier dimanche de l’Avent, dans les communautés prêtes.C’est une belle proposition du (Préfet de la Congrégation pour le Culte Divin et la Discipline des Sacrements).Son appel s’adresse à tous mais spécialement aux prêtres :

« Je veux lancer un appel à tous les prêtres. Peut-être avez-vous lu mon article dans L’Osservatore Romano il y a un an (12 juin 2015), ou mon entretien donné au journal Famille chrétienne au mois de mai de cette année. A chaque fois, j’ai dit qu’il est de première importance de retourner aussi vite que possible à une orientation commune des prêtres et des fidèles, tournés ensemble dans la même direction – vers l’est ou du moins vers l’abside – vers le Seigneur qui vient, dans toutes les parties du rite où l’on s’adresse au Seigneur. Cette pratique est permise par les règles liturgiques actuelles. Cela est parfaitement légitime dans le nouveau rite (de Paul VI). En effet, je pense qu’une étape cruciale est de faire en sorte que le Seigneur soit au centre des célébrations.

  Aussi, chers frères dans le sacerdoce, je vous demande humblement et fraternellement de mettre en œuvre cette pratique partout où cela sera possible, avec la prudence et la pédagogie nécessaire, mais aussi avec l’assurance, en tant que prêtres, que c’est une bonne chose pour l’Eglise et pour les fidèles. Votre appréciation pastorale déterminera comment et quand cela sera possible, mais pourquoi éventuellement ne pas commencer le premier dimanche de l’Avent de cette année, quand nous attendons le « Seigneur [qui] va venir sans tarder » ? (Londres, 5 juillet 2016).

Voilà le tournant irréversible. Voilà “l’étape cruciale”. Tournons-nous vers le Christ, soleil levant, et nous serons sauvés. La Vierge Marie, Notre-Dame de Komiguéa, nous aidera.

Bon Temps de l’Avent à chacun et à tous !

+Pascal N’KOUE
Omnium Servus

Brick by brick.  Mass by Mass.  Parish by parish.  Diocese by Diocese.

What’s Micken’s problem?  Does he, like Card. Kasper during the Synod, not think that Africans can give leadership?

The appeal of Card. Sarah is going to bear fruit.  His appeal for ad orientem worship could not to be put into practice everywhere in this calendar year, but the appeal is still sounding.   Slowly but surely, priests and bishops will make this move, especially after they see the fruits gathered in those places where ad orientem worship has been reinstituted.

Libs are terrified of ad orientem worship.


Posted in "How To..." - Practical Notes, Hard-Identity Catholicism, The future and our choices, Throwing a Nutty, Turn Towards The Lord | Tagged , , , , | 31 Comments

Could Pope Francis reconcile SSPX TOMORROW, Monday after Year of Mercy’s closure?

I, as many others, have over the last couple weeks wondered whether or not Pope Francis would extend beyond the Year of Mercy the opportunity for penitents to seek out priests of the SSPX for sacramental confession and valid absolution.  There have been rumors – rumors – to that effect but nothing concrete.

That was an opportunity extended during the Year of Mercy.

The Year of Mercy is now over.

That opportunity for confession, as far as I know, is now over as well.

Hope springs eternal.

Today, however, I see a different of story, which is even better than the mere chance to go to confession (as great as that is).

Today I read at the German site Katholisches that Pope Francis may – may – regularize the SSPX in the structure of a Personal Prelature, similar to Opus Dei.  He may – may – do this on Monday.  That’s tomorrow.

Wouldn’t that be a fine and concrete manifestation of the mercy, accompaniment, and concern for peripheries that we hear so much about?

Keep in mind that this, too, is no more than a rumor.  It would, however, explain why there has been no statement about confessions to SSPX priests beyond the Year of Mercy, if it was ever the Pope’s intention to extend such a grant.   That in itself was a rumor.

Nixon went to China.  Francis could unite the SSPX.

Lots of rumor and hearsay!  It would be best to take this all with icy reserve. Do NOT get all worked up about it.

To anyone who is even slightly interested in traditional expressions or our Faith, and to anyone who is even slightly interested in matters of unity in Holy Church, I suggest that some time be spent today in prayer for this outcome: that Pope Francis establish the SSPX as a Personal Prelature, if that is deemed to be the best route to greater manifest unity and fruitful service to Holy Church.

Posted in SSPX, Year of Mercy | 25 Comments

Update on Deaconettes

Did you remember that the Pope formed a Committee to study the question of female deacons?  Deaconettes?

Right.  Not exactly on the top of the list of things to think about.

Archbishop Francisco Ladaria Ferrer, the Secretary of the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith is the one who is running, at the behest of the Pope, the Committee on Deaconettes.   He is rather retiring, so this interview at ZENIT is interesting, to say the least.

There were questions on other topics, but this one requires special attention.

INTERVIEW: Feminine Diaconate: ‘Only Study, No Decisions Right Away,’ Says Archbishop Ladaria


ZENIT: One last question. We know that the Pope recently appointed the President of the Commission of Study on the Feminine Diaconate. Can this rediscovery eventually foster the ecumenical dialogue or rather hurt it?

Archbishop Ladaria: In my opinion, at this moment the Pope wants to make an objective study, not to come to a decision, but to study how things were in the early times of the Church. This study doesn’t pretend to have an ecumenical scope. The desire is to give the Holy Father some elements of judgment and nothing more. The Pope has said that “this aspect should be studied, especially in the early times of the Church.” It must be a serene reflection without pressures and without the urgency to come to a decision in a short time.

Soon…. they are going to, you know, take some time and turn all the rocks over and looooook underneeeeeeeeath them, and then study the results and write about their observations.  Then they will send their papers in to be collated.  That’ll take a while.  Then they will need time to read and to reflect on what everyone else is saying.  In turn that will drive them back to studying the question again, with new points of consideration.  They will reeeeeeeead and thiiiiiiiink…. and refleeeeeeeeecct….

Yep.  Nope. This is going nowhere, folks.  Nowhere verrrrrry sloooooowly.

Posted in Deaconettes | Tagged , , , | 19 Comments