Showing posts from December, 2017

The Incarnation

I have found myself in prayer this Christmas, reflecting on the scandal of the Incarnation. It really is the most unbelievable scandal, that we would presume to believe that the all powerful creator of the Universe, time, space, matter - the will that brought all things into being and keeps all things in being - should enter His own creation in such a meek and vulnerable form. However, any study of the early Church reveals that the first Christians did not doubt that Christ was God, what they struggled with was the extent to which He was in fact man. It seems extraordinary that the situation has somehow inverted itself today.
The doctrine of the Incarnation holds that Jesus, the preexistent divine Logos and the second hypostasis of the Trinity, God the Son and Son of the Father, taking on a human body and human nature, "was made flesh" and conceived in the womb of Mary the Theotokos (Greek for "God-bearer"; Latin: Mater Dei, literally 'Mother of God'). The…

Devastating Accusations Levelled at Head of Pope's Council of Cardinals

Remember Pope Benedict XVI asking us to pray that he would not flee from the wolves? Well we are now seeing what life under the wolves is really like. Day after day, scandal after scandal. Yesterday we had this:
Cardinal Maradiaga is head of the Pope’s Council of Cardinals and a close friend of the Pope. These accusation of financial and personal malfeasence are devastating. The Pope is said to be investigating. — Raymond Arroyo (@RaymondArroyo) December 21, 2017Basically the story is that Cardinal Oscar Maradiaga, one of Pope Francis' closest friends and advisers and coordinator of the Council of Cardinals no less, who, like the Pope himself, is constantly preaching about "the poor", received half a million euros a year from a University in Honduras. Pope Francis has called for an investigation into millionaire investments and more inappropriate behaviour from one Bishop Pineda, a follower of the cardinal.

A report i…

Cardinal Sarah to celebrate Mass at Chartres!

The Paris-Chartres Pilgrimage occurs every year on the Feast of Pentecost in early summer, and is a multi-generational, multi-national gathering of Catholics who draw closer to God through the centuries-old act of pilgrimage.

The walk is roughly 62 miles over 3 days—beginning at daybreak on the Saturday before Pentecost, and ending with an afternoon mass on the Monday after Pentecost. The trek takes 8,000-10,000 pilgrims from the Cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris, through the French countryside to the Cathedral of Notre Dame in Chartres. Participants brave the weather, blisters, and humble food and accommodations as an act of faith and an act of reparation in these modern times.

If you want to get a flavour of the pilgrimage, I recommend you check out CC Father's blog, where he has kept a valuable record of his experiences on the pilgrimage over a number of years and with numerous children in tow.

Last year, Cardinal Burke offered the Mass at Chatres and received an extremely warm…

BBC portrayal of religion “often absent, poorly presented or satirised”.

It was really counter-intuitive to hear on BBC Radio 4 this morning that, following an internal review, the BBC are set to increase their coverage of religions. Unsurprisingly, the year-long review found that people of all faiths were “often absent, poorly presented or satirised”.

The corporation’s religion and ethics review, which is out today, proposes a variety of improvements such as including religious themes in the broadcaster’s popular dramas and soaps on both TV and radio, more documentaries covering religious and ethical issues being commissioned and for popular programmes such as The One Show to celebrate Hindu, Muslim, Sikh and Jewish holy days.

The BBC newsroom’s global religious affairs team will be expanded and the Thought for the Day slot on Radio 4 will be more closely linked to news items with women and young people. Figures from a wider range of religions will be invited to contribute.

The proposals echo a new set of rules from Ofcom, which in October ordered the br…

Pope Francis: Shrewd Manipulator or Naive Puppet?

The Catholic Herald has, in my estimation, been very cautious in its approach to a number of issues which have a vaguely political whiff about them this year. One is the CES Scandal, which it has barely addressed, even given a very benign spin, despite the obvious contradictions, problems and ambiguities, as documented here, for example.

Another is with regard to the new book on Pope Francis The Dictator Pope. The Catholic Herald's Editorial Director is the journalist Damian Thompson. Thompson is rarely backward in coming forward and has written some incisive and condemning pieces on Pope Francis himself over the last year or four. However he has released this interesting and intelligent Spectator pod-cast wherein he discusses the new book The Dictator Pope with Ed Condon, Canon Lawyer, and Dan Hitchens, Deputy Editor of the Catholic Herald.

The podcast relates how the book, though clearly a hatchet job, is credible as it is intelligently written and repeats a lot of details relia…

Who will defend the Church?

I had a great weekend, on Saturday meeting up with a bunch of committed Catholic friends for a paintballing session deep in the Surrey woods, and on Sunday after Mass, meeting up with my Catenian brothers for our Christmas lunch.

The men I spent Saturday with are all full of distress about the Church and disappointment regarding the attitude of bishops/ cardinals, the lack of leadership and the fact that consistently, Catholics who believe what the Church teaches, teachers who teach what the Church teaches, and especially priests who teach what the Church teaches are attacked, punished and marginalised, while any kind of heresy is ignored or even promoted.

To be honest I'm swamped with material like this. I feel I have a duty to draw your attention to the dangerous things going on in our Church at present, but on the other hand, I also have a number of positive things I want to report on. I can't find the time to keep up with all the negative stuff, let alone gather my though…

Catholic Teaching is under assault...from the Pope!

Is Catholic teaching under assault from Amoris Laetitia. Yes says Canon Lawyer Fr. Gerald Murray.

Sometimes in discussions with some people it seems they think I am making up the confusion and problems being caused directly by the words and actions of Pope Francis. EWTN is well known for being cautious, middle of the road, faithful and devout. It seeks to avoid controversy and upsetting the mainstream bishops, etc. But the dismay evident in this clip is incontrovertible. It is a clear examination which is highly commendable for its' objectivity and clarity. It covers all the bases.

It seems clear that the inclusion in AAS is an attempt by Pope Francis to deal with the dubia by roundabout means.

Edward Pentin reports that Bishop Arrieta, the second-ranking official at the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts, said the Buenos Aires guidelines take into account “norms but also the concrete situations” affecting the conscience of remarried divorcees “in order to deal with a compl…

Abortion in the UK: David Vs Goliath

Clare McCullough of The Good Counsel Network (GCN) appeared before the UK House of Commons Home Affairs Select Committee last Tuesday to talk about alleged harassment by right-to-life groups outside abortion facilities, as I reported on in October here.

Here, she speaks excellently in describing the kind and peaceful nature of the vigils, and against the Select Committee’s utterly biased pro-abortion Chairperson Yvette Cooper MP, she shows the relevance of the voices of those women who have been helped by GCN.
Clare McCullough of @GoodCounselNet contributed superbly to @CommonsHomeAffs yesterday, refuting #harassment allegations & speaking for women given real #choice: — Right To Life (@RightToLifeUK) December 13, 2017 A friend of mine, Clare, who has blogged brilliantly before on this issue here and here, wrote this on Facebook about the dreadful situation and t…

Author of The Dictator Pope comes out of the shadows

The Italian publication La Verità has secured an interesting interview with the author of The Dictator Pope, the pseudonymous Marcantonio Colonna.
"It was necessary to use a pseudonym because, as the book tells us, Pope Francis takes merciless revenge on those who oppose him. For example, the three assistants of Cardinal Müller who were dismissed in October 2016 for alleged criticism of the Pope."~Colonna
In this interview, Colonna says that the media image of Pope Francis is one of the most amazing scams of contemporary life. All who work in the Vatican know the abyss between that image and reality and we should not be surprised that someone eventually reveals the truth.

Asked why he wrote the book, he explains that he intends it "to prevent the Church from making a similar error again. That is to elect as Pope a little-known cardinal who turns out to be very different from what he seemed."

According to Colonna Pope Francis is "sovereign who exercises his pe…

When God Speaks

Further to the discussion regarding the sixth petition of the Lord's prayer, and Pope Benedict XVI's superb catechesis, which I posted here, I stumbled on this Youtube video of Nabeel.

Back in July 2009, I lost control of my car in a torrential downpour and the one passenger, my seven year old daughter Ruth, was killed. So began the darkest, most difficult period of my life so far. A period of my life I am still very much in. Through that time I have felt desperate, alone, utterly empty. But I have also felt continually comforted through the grief and pain by my wife and children as we suffered together, but also, in a very real and tangible way, by God.

Nabeel Qureshi was a Christian convert from the Ahmadiyya sect of Islam. He also wrote three books, Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus: A Devout Muslim Encounters Christianity (Zondervan, February 2014), Answering Jihad: A Better Way Forward (Zondervan, March 2016), and No God But One—Allah or Jesus (Zondervan, August 2016). He die…

True Discipleship under Pope Francis - what are your options?

Fr. Dwight Longnecker is a priest I have long admired, read and followed. He is orthodox, honest & forthright. Not afraid to stand up for the faith. I was interested to read his blog today, in which he basically attacks those who are being pushed into sedevacantism by Pope Francis. 'Is that a thing?' you may legitimately ask. Well, there's loads of it out there, as Fr. Dwight remarks in his post: As increasing numbers of conservative Catholics become impatient with Pope Francis, I’m afraid this dilemma is becoming more acute. I hear rumblings and grumblings about the Pope, about Amoris Letitia and just about everything else, and the grumblings are becoming increasingly sour and nasty. But what are you going to do, become a sedevacantist? Good luck with that.
In fact, if you’re so fed up with the pope you should make that choice. Is he the pope or not? Conservative Catholics need to face the truth. Francis is the Pope. Get used to it and get busy being Catholic. You th…

Crispian Holllis - Forgotten, but not gone

It was once said to me that we nearly "lost the whole of the South Coast" under the disastrous bishoprics of Hollis, Budd and Murphy-O'Connor/Conry. So much so that drastic measures have been needed to revive all three diocese, and Bishop Mark O'Toole has said "the West Country is ‘mission territory’ akin to Pakistan or Burma".

Bishop Emeritus Hollis has spoken out against the 2011 English Translation of the Roman Missal in a letter to the mouthpiece of all heresy; the Tablet.

The publication carried a letter from Bishop Hollis, who was bishop of Portsmouth from 1989 to 2012 when the excellent, orthodox and erudite Bishop Egan took over.

I am grateful for the correspondence about the current translation of our liturgical texts and for Eamon Duffy’s cogent article, “Broken English” (2 December). It has given me an opportunity to look back and to regret deeply that I did not take the discussions in the Bishops’ Conference about the translations more seriously…

Pope wants to change the Lord's prayer

So you've all seen this story by now I'm sure, here in The Catholic Herald

Pope Francis has called for the Italian translation of the Lord’s Prayer to be changed as it implies God leads people into temptation.

The line, which is traditionally translated into English as “And lead us not into temptation”, was recently changed in French to say “do not let us enter into temptation.”

Currently, the Italian translation is rendered in the same way as the English, implying a change in the English version may also be coming.

Asked about the change on French TV, the Pope said the traditional phrasing is “not a good translation”.

“I am the one who falls. It’s not him pushing me into temptation to then see how I have fallen,” he said. “A father doesn’t do that, a father helps you to get up immediately. It’s Satan who leads us into temptation, that’s his department.”
The current English translation has two things going for it: it’s an accurate rendering of both the NT Greek and the Latin;…

Kasper says the game is won

++Kasper: #Pope’s official endorsement of Buenos Aires bishops’ guidelines “hopefully ends” the ”tiresome” debate over Amoris. “The flaw in the critique of #AmorisLaetitia is a unilateral moral objectivism that undervalues the importance of personal conscience in the moral act.” — Edward Pentin (@EdwardPentin) December 9, 2017

Far from gossip, The Dictator Pope is "absolutely reliable"

A few of days ago I posted about a new book called The Dictator Pope which has been really causing a stir as it claims to be the inside story of the most tyrannical and unprincipled papacy of modern times.

Now this was first posted on One Peter Five, which I love, but some criticise because it is a site critical of progressive catholic attitudes and modernism. Anyway some people these days dismiss certain sources because they tend to contradict their own agenda. I don't, as I have said here numerous times before, we are all parts of the body of Christ and that body has many parts (cf. 1 Cor 12). If I agree with everything someone says, I'm probably reading my own blog. We all get it wrong sometimes.

Anyway, I was concerned initially that this would be seen as a diatribe against the pope with an agenda. This would make the contents easier to dismiss.
Almost read “The Dictator Pope”, of course it is all libelous gossip, the Church is not a dictatorship, is it? — raymond blake (…