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The Temptation to Despair & The Spirit of the Vendée

As I was reading through a backlog of articles and news stories in preparation to write this reflection, I received a phone call from one of my oldest friends. After referencing all that is transpiring in the Church, he asked with a nervous laugh how it is that I’ve not yet fallen into despair.

“To be honest,” I said, “I’m not sure. It’s tempting.”

On a recent visit to the confessional, I mentioned this temptation, and how it can affect my resistance to other sins. “I know it’s not an excuse, Father,” I said, “but sometimes when I look at the state of the Church, and see heretics running everything, and there are no consequences for any of it, I can’t help thinking, why do I have to follow all the rules and try so hard if they don’t?” His advice to me, among other things, was to be careful how many websites I read about what is happening in the Church, so I can avoid becoming overwhelmed. Under the anonymity of the confessional, he didn’t know who I was, and I wasn’t inclined to tell him that I’m in charge of one of those websites. And we don’t even publish half of what is newsworthy in that regard.

As I continued my conversation with my friend, I said something I’ve been saying a lot lately — to friends, to family, even to some of you who have written to me recently. “I’m seeing this despair spreading everywhere. Christ made promises about His Church, and they’re being broken. And while I think the way people are feeling is a natural consequence of that situation, I also strongly suspect that there is a profound spiritual component at work. The enemy is spreading the lie: ‘See? Look what is happening in the Church! Why do you stay? Why are you so naive that you continue to believe it could be true?'”

And then, as I was saying it, I was struck by a parallel I hadn’t considered. A week or so ago, as I was praying a decade of the rosary with my children, I decided to read a reflection on the mystery we were about to contemplate — the Agony in the Garden. The reflection was taken from Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich’s The Dolorous Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ, and one aspect in particular came back to me as I discussed the situation with my friend:

[Jesus] fell on his face, overwhelmed with unspeakable sorrow, and all the sins of the world displayed themselves before him, under countless forms and in all their real deformity. He took them all upon himself, and in his prayer offered his own adorable Person to the justice of his Heavenly Father, in payment for so awful a debt. But Satan, who was enthroned amid all these horrors, and even filled with diabolical joy at the sight of them, let loose his fury against Jesus, and displayed before the eyes of his soul increasingly awful visions, at the same time addressing his adorable humanity in words such as these: ‘Takest thou even this sin upon thyself? Art thou willing to bear its penalty? Art thou prepared to satisfy for all these sins?’

Satan knows better than anyone how to cause us to doubt. How to point to the deepest flaws and most egregious obstacles in even the most faithful plan, and to use them to trip up our resolve.

The Revolution Shall Not be Televised

In the midst of this weakness, in this moment of doubt, we see a growing backlash against those intrepid few who are standing firm against error in the winds that now blow through the Church. Today I read a new article by Robert Mickens, a papal fanboy and English Editor of La Croix International. Entitled, Opposition to Pope Francis: It’s time to call off the dogs, the piece seeks to break the spirit of papal critics by enlisting the Pope Emeritus to distance himself from their critiques. He is, of course, mistaken in his impression that Pope Benedict is a hero of the traditionalists — after all, it is he who left his post and in so doing, abandoned us to the wolves — but he drives home certain points worth noting.

His primary tactic is to minimize the scope of the opposition:

The good news is that, as best one can tell, those who are rowing against the current helmsman of the Barque of Peter are part of a very tiny, if noisy, minority.

The bad news is that they are mostly found among the Church’s ordained workforce – men who serve as priests and bishops.

The most recent Vatican statistics claim that there are some 1.285 billion members of the worldwide Catholic community. Among them nearly 416,000 are priests and another 5,300 are bishops – only about .03% of all baptized Catholics.

And even in this subset, the number of those who actively oppose the pope is most likely marginal. It is a minority within a minority.

It is impossible to state the exact numbers. However, we can identify certain discernible traits and trends. For example, opposition to Francis is emanating most energetically from the English-speaking world, certain parts of Europe and in areas of Africa where the pope’s critics tend to be younger (under the age of 50), doctrinally rigid and liturgically “retrodox” members of the clergy.

People in the anti-Francis camp also show tendencies toward a very narrow understanding of the application of Canon Law, a slavish devotion to liturgical rubricism and an outdated Euro-centric view of the world that is rooted in classical Greco-Roman philosophical systems.

Mickens goes on to explain that it is not only clergy who oppose the pope, but

also small groups of the baptized faithful that are also highly critical and even disparaging of him. They demonstrate similar characteristics of the rebellious clergy. They, too, tend to be younger, fundamentalists when it comes to church teaching and promoters of a pre-Vatican II liturgy and ecclesiology.

These papal critics are loud and disruptive. They are also organized and tenacious. But let’s get something straight – they are also minorities within both the clergy and the laity. [emphasis added]

His observations immediately call to mind the recent words of His Eminence Cardinal Burke, who, in recounting St. Thomas More’s opposition to King Henry VIII, said:

“In the Church now, even as then, where people argue about, ‘many people want this, and not many bishops are speaking up to correct this confused idea about the indissolubility of marriage, and that the Church has to change and so forth,’ and St. Thomas More is a sign for us that the truth never changes, and that it doesn’t matter how many people are in favor of a lie, it doesn’t make it the truth.” [emphasis added]

But Mickens, it seems, is attempting to plead with the Vatican apparatus — whom inside sources have told me have absolutely no concept of how to gauge the influence of Internet opposition — to downplay the influence of blogs and social media:

But they’ve [papal critics] made themselves seem more representative of the overall Catholic population by capitalizing on social media and using the large megaphone that cyberspace provides. In this way, they have successfully deceived far too many people (especially in the mainstream media) into believing that the Church is equally divided into two groups – one that loves Pope Francis and one that cannot stand him.

I won’t deny the truth of this statement. We are in the minority. There’s no question about that. But we are a vocal and energized minority, and I can tell you that in the past month, we’ve logged 325 visits from The Holy See — a city state with a population of only 1,000 people.

They know we are watching. And they are watching the watchers.

The Spirit of the Vendée

In a 2004 review of two books on the Vendee, Anne Barbeau Gardiner offered a succinct summary of this incredible 18th Century story:

Given the growth of militant anti-Catholicism in the West, these two books are highly recommended. The authors prepare us for what lies ahead if this juggernaut proceeds unchecked. In western France in the 1790s a similar state of affairs led to the persecution of the Church under color of law, and then when Catholic peasants in Vendée dared to resist this persecution, the ruling atheists ordered the entire population of that region to be exterminated — men, women, and children. They sent out the army in “infernal columns” to “depopulate the Vendée.” [Reynald] Secher says the minimum number of casualties is around 118,000, while [Michael] Davies thinks the number is closer to 250,000. The genocide of the Vendeans is not well known outside of France, but it truly deserves to be. It teaches a valuable lesson, that visceral hatred of Catholicism, left unchecked, can turn to genocide.

Eerily enough, those who carried out the genocide in Vendée gave glimpses of that perverse mentality later found among the Nazis. They cast women and children into ovens, made use of human skin for clothing, and burned women to collect their fat. The gruesome details of these atrocities are attested facts. Indeed, the atrocities were often recorded by agents of the government.

The suffering and death of the Catholics in Vendée was not in vain. They achieved a glorious victory. In the end, because of their heroic example, the anti-Catholic persecution of the 1790s was a failure. The Church in France was supposed to have been eradicated. Instead, she rose to new life. As Tertullian said, “the blood of martyrs is the seed of the Church.” In 1801, when Napoleon granted freedom of worship to all the Catholics of France, it was seen as the victory of the Vendée.

In a talk given this past August in the Vendée region of France, Cardinal Robert Sarah said that the Frenchmen of the Assocation of Puy du Fou — who keep the memory of the Vendeeans alive — must continue their work, because

In the face of the dictatorship of relativism, in the face of thought terrorism which – once more – wants to tear God out of the hearts of the children, we need to find again the freshness of spirit, the joyful and ardent simplicity of these saints and of these martyrs.

Sarah continued:

My brothers, we Christians need this spirit of the Vendeans! We need this example! Like them, we need to leave our sowing and our furrows in order to fight – not for mere human interests, but for God! Who still today will rise up for God? Who will dare to confront the modern persecutors of the Church? Who will have the courage to rise up without weapons except the rosary and the Sacred Heart in order to face the death columns of our time which are relativism, indifferentism, and the disdain for God?

Today, as we see our beloved Catholic Church joining in joint celebrations with Lutheran Protestants of the 500th anniversary of The Reformation — one of the most damaging events to have ever befallen mankind — we can see that the spirit of the Vendée is indeed alive and well to this day in the Church. Yesterday in Brussels, a group of young men (and one young woman) knelt in the Catholic Cathedral of St. Michael and St. Gudula to pray the rosary in protest of a service “with the United Protestant Church in Belgium, the country’s largest Protestant denomination.” They continued to pray as the pastor attempted to preach his sermon until they were physically removed by police.

You heard that correctly: Catholic young people were removed from a Catholic Cathedral for praying the rosary in protest of an ecumenical service that brought Protestants into the church to celebrate anniversary of the Reformation — and specifically, the anniversary of Martin Luther’s publication of his “95 Theses”. Recall what Pope Leo X said about Luther’s theology in his condemnation, Exsurge Domine, written in 1520:

[B]ecause the preceding errors and many others are contained in the books or writings of Martin Luther, we likewise condemn, reprobate, and reject completely the books and all the writings and sermons of the said Martin, whether in Latin or any other language, containing the said errors or any one of them; and we wish them to be regarded as utterly condemned, reprobated, and rejected. We forbid each and every one of the faithful of either sex, in virtue of holy obedience and under the above penalties to be incurred automatically, to read, assert, preach, praise, print, publish, or defend them.

And it is in this spirit that these young protesters came. It is in this spirit that they handed out a leaflet explaining the reason for their protest:

“Our Cathedral of St Michael and St Gudula is a Catholic building built by our fathers to be a House of God, for the celebration of the holy Mass, for the praise of God and the saints.

“The occupation of our cathedral by Protestants to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation is therefore a profanation.

“Indeed, the so-called Reformation was really a revolt: under the pretext of combating abuses, Luther rebelled against the divine authority of the Catholic Church, denied numerous Truths of the Faith, abolished the Sacrifice of the Mass and the Sacraments, rejected the necessity of good works and the practice of Christian virtues. Finally, he attacked the veneration of the Virgin Mary and the saints, the religious life and monastic vows.

“This terrible revolution was a great tragedy for Christian society and for the salvation of souls. And the Lutheran errors are still heresies today because the Truth is eternal.”

You can see the video of their protest here:

The group consisted of 11 young people in a cathedral where hundreds, if not thousands, were gathered to honor the memory of one of the most tragic events in all of Christendom. They were, as Robert Mickens would say, “a minority within a minority”. And yet they brought that service to a stand still. They continued praying as the organist and the congregation attempted to drown them out. And in virtue of their protest ending in forcible removal from the church at the hands of the police, it was their story — their message — and not that of the celebrators of the Reformation that caught international attention.

Dieu, le Roi!

Mickens hints, in his attack on faithful protesters, that a central problem is their attachment to the Church’s ancient liturgy:

Most of the opposition to Pope Francis is coming from Catholics who are devoted to celebrating the Tridentine Mass. And many of them are from fringe groups that Benedict, first as a cardinal and then as pope, moved persistently to bring into the mainstream of the Church.

His most monumental act was to issue a papal “motu proprio” in 2007 to normalize the pre-Vatican II liturgy. He said part of the reason he did so was to bring about “an interior reconciliation at the heart of the Church”. Francis has shown no attachment to the Old Mass, but he has done nothing to restrict it.

Members of these reconciled groups of Tridentine Mass enthusiasts, however, have betrayed Benedict’s intention to “regain reconciliation and unity” in a divided Church. And, instead, by their attacks on the current pope, they have intensified the divisions.

Mickens isn’t the first to make such comments about the liturgy in recent days, and I take them as a threat. But as Pope Benedict told us, the ancient Mass was never abrogated, and “What earlier generations held as sacred, remains sacred and great for us too, and it cannot be all of a sudden entirely forbidden or even considered harmful.”

Mickens goes on to say that Benedict should “break his silence once more” and remind the critics of Francis — as he said to the cardinals upon his resignation in 2013 — to “be completely docile to the action of the Holy Spirit in the election of the new pope”.

But as we all know, the Holy Spirit does not choose the pope. Ratzinger himself once admitted before his own election to the papacy, when he said:

“I would not say so, in the sense that the Holy Spirit picks out the Pope…I would say that the Spirit does not exactly take control of the affair, but rather like a good educator, as it were, leaves us much space, much freedom, without entirely abandoning us. Thus the Spirit’s role should be understood in a much more elastic sense, not that he dictates the candidate for whom one must vote. Probably the only assurance he offers is that the thing cannot be totally ruined.”

He continued:

There are too many contrary instances of popes the Holy Spirit obviously would not have picked!

And here we stand, before an obvious example of a pope the Holy Spirit would not have picked — except, perhaps, to help bring this Modernist crisis at last to a close by exposing it for the fraudulent Christianity it is. So no, we will not be silent. We will not give in to despair. We will, like the Vendeeans before us, stand firm against overwhelming odds, shouting our battle cry: Dieu, le Roi!  God, the King!

152 thoughts on “The Temptation to Despair & The Spirit of the Vendée”

  1. Good brave young Men surrounded by incredulous “congregationalists” with embarrassed smiles
    betraying their discomfort at “an interruption” to a “night out”.

    Women in mini-skirts and female police (dressed and armed like men) in pants.
    And the most tragic aspect is the blind ignorance of what befall’s them.

    Truly a picture of our times…..

  2. They’re doing it all wrong. Our bishops don’t recognize the Rosary. They recognize only hip leftist social media slogans.

    What they should’ve done is get in contact with Jewish groups to join them, print up anti-semitic quotes from Martin Luther. And made big big signs showing pictures of Martin Luther together with the local Bishop with the words ‘WHITE SUPREMACISTS’ under them.

    That would put a quick end to any such ‘celebrations’ and you’d have the bishop on his knees kissing their shoes.

    That’s what they should’ve done. Be wise as serpents etc.

  3. May God convert the heretics among the hierarchy of the Church, and if they will not be converted, may He strike them dead before they have time to accrue more sins to add to the enormity of their iniquities.

  4. To keep from despairing, I think of what Sr Lucia said about the third secret regarding Satan’s destruction of marriage and the family…Our Lady has already crushed the head of the serpent. Thinking of this brings me inner peace.

    • Help me understand. I have never heard nor see proof that our Mother Mary has crushed the serpents head. I am well aware it is by her this will be done. Convince me that the only Woman to have lived a Perfect life on this Earth and prized by the Father above all Creation …. Has finished Her work. Otherwise I am forced to recognize that Her work is being done and it is up to Us Mankind both Male and Female to seek and be brught up by Her so that we fulfill the task and by doing bring Her the greatest Joy and that will be the fulfillment of the Fathers intention (as is with any Father of any biological species) that His Children learn to His Law Keep His Law Enforce His Law and become as Him. thank you i look forward to response

  5. ” … to help bring this Modernist crisis at last to a close by exposing it for the fraudulent Christianity it is.”

    Wishful thinking. On the contrary, it’s going to get a great deal worse. The New Vendeans will have to face their new genocide before the victory. Why? Because if Bergoglio is the False Prophet, he is followed by the Anti-Christ.

    As to Mickens, he is the personification of the liberal-progressive heresies of our time, and has been, for a very long time. He was closely involved with the turning of ‘The Tablet’, the British once-Catholic journal, into a liberal-progressive dissenters’ charter.

        • What I don’t get is, if as Sister Lucia said, the final battle is between the devil and marriage and the family, and we are facing this full-on now, what is to happen in the next 12 years?
          Are we really sure that we have 100 years to wait? I mean, we are just operating on the precedent set by St. Margaret Mary and the Kings of France. Perhaps if we pray hard enough, God will shorten the time.

          • How about we get really involved and wage Christain Holy War against all Evil. Purge it from yourself and do not tolerate it around you. This inevitably leads to organized violence used against you and if you are truly Catholic you will be forced to defend yourself. May you make our Father proud and become a Man 😉

      • Not “assuming”, no, but rather, given the evidence, prudently determining.

        It seems that other Catholics too are now waking up to the reality of living in Apocalyptic times. Comboxes have been full of such comments for years, without really meaning it. But here is the reality of a renegade Pope at least under the control of satanic thoughts, if not Satan.

        The advent of Bergoglio with his whole programme and his complete contempt for all of us; the raising up throughout the world of open displays of Lucifer and his worship and the brazenness of his followers; the evident – it certainly seems evident to me – collapse in the efficacy of the Mass: these are the three indicators.

        “This poses”, as one friend has written to me, “the basic intel question: who is the Anti-Christ, where is he, what is he and what is he likely to do?”

        Those of us thinking this way look to the big one, where Bergoglio gives life to the image of the beast, however this might transpire and whatever it means in actuality.

        • In Sr. Faustina’s diary she recorded her daily suffering for Jesus. On one date she recorded that her suffering was the most it had ever been and she could not understand why. That was the day of Bergoglio was born. That’s proof enough for me.

        • The only One to Fear is Christ. You appear older and better educated than myself. I can tell you this, you need to examine yourself and purge the evil from yourself untill you see none and if it has chosen to remain around you then your duty is to vanquish it. If you are a baptised Christain your Job is to follow His Law. Starting with our Father who we are to Obey. Fear Him you will learn and follow his Law. You learn His Law then you may show that you Love Him by Living by His Law and hating Evil and destroying His enemies. If not this Whats the point in any of this speculation?

      • Benedict Carter writes “if Bergoglio is the False Prophet, he is followed by the Anti-Christ “and qualifies it with the supposition “if” This appears to conform with the spirit of 1P5 policy re ‘Popes’ ie “don’t declare anyone else whose name begins with pope an antipope. ,,,,,We allow reasonable and prudent speculation but definitive, declarative statements of such and/or accusations that others must reach the same conclusion are not welcome.”

        Additionally, why do you single him out for negative comment when you ignore so many others who also enjoy reader agreement and support (upvotes)? A few quick examples.

        Patti D Laurence England • 4 days ago The False Prophet’s agenda is becoming more open, cunningly
        using his cohorts in the Vatican to “take the reins” of bringing about these revolutionary changes.
        Upvotes 14

        Joseph D’Hippolito Harpa Dei • 4 days ago Harpa Dei, Francis could well be the False Prophet.
        Upvotes 6

        Memento Mori Perrier • 4 days ago Pope Francis is not the antichrist, but there is good chance that he is the false prophet, the precursor, the sort of John Baptist to Christ voice, just the opposite.
        Upvotes 5
        An explanation would be appreciated.

        • Thank you for bringing these other comments to our attention; they will be addressed as needed.

          No one is being singled. Others have been warned and/or removed for similar offenses; however, given the volume of comments on the site, it’s a fact that not all of them are or can be reviewed.

          I’m sorry I can’t get into why the comment in question does not adhere to spirit of the comment policy.

          • In thanking me for “bringing these comments to our attention” I get the impression that I have done 1P5 a favour in ‘dobbing in’ Patti, Joseph and Memento for their False Prophet comments. That was not my intention at all. Rather I was focused on 1P5’s inconsistency in the treatment of Benedict Carter. However, you excuse things by explaining that the volume of commentary hinders effective censorship of all, or words to that effect. It seems that he is on a special watch list.

            But there is more. You can’t, or did not wish to explain why his comment offends 1P5 policy yet further on in your reply to Deacon Augustine you did. There is a lengthy list of derogatory names and titles by which 1P5 consistently allows Pope Francis to be described by either assertion, inference, supposition or outright declaration. Apostate, formal heretic, son of Satan, Lutheran, false prophet (generic) etc. But the 1P5 published policy on comments only forbids declarations that the pope is an antipope, nothing else.

            Clearly 1P5 needs to update its rules in the place where people look for them ─ Comment Policy.

            There is something else odd here. The Holy Father is permitted by 1P5 to be described with a variety of profane epithets whilst “Pontificating … pure Protestantism” is applied to Benedict Carter. I would expect to see him here demanding an apology for that which orthodox Catholics would regard as calumny.

    • Benedict, how do you know that Bergoglio is not the Anti-Christ? The false prophet could have been the one who was responsible for engineering his election.

      • He doesn’t know because none of us have sufficient knowledge to make that determination. In any event, assertions as to whether he’s the false prophet, anit-christ, not-validly-elected, etc are not only a violation of the 1P5 comment policy, but are also matters — should the need ever arise — which the Church alone must settle. Pontificating on them ourselves is pure Protestantism.

  6. It isn’t helpful to argue the point about the Holy Spirit “picking” a pope. So what if He does? He could be choosing a pope as a chastisement. It doesn’t absolve a pope from any wrongdoing either way.

    • The point is that the enemies of the Church attempt to use the Holy Spirit picking the Pope as a prop to support all that the Pope does and says as coming from the Holy Spirit (much like the modern day ultramontanes abuse the limited notion Papal Infallibility to hold that whatever the Pope says is of the Holy Spirit and infallible.)

      So, it is helpful to point out that the Holy Spirit does not posses the Cardinals in such a way as to make them vote for the man He particularly wants on the Chair of Peter. Rather the Holy Spirit seeks to guide the Cardinal Electors to uphold the Faith and pick the Man who will do that most effectively, but that they, like us, are free to reject his gentle guidance. And that God will still make use of that one to bring about His salvific plan. Even if it now requires Divine Chastisement.

      It is not an exercise of futility to distinguish between the Perfect and Permissive will of God in the Life of the Church. What is necessary is that one give Him self over entirely to the Will of God, trusting that He will bring about HIs Perfect Will through the use of His Permissive Will in accord with the freedom He has given to Man.

  7. It is not inconceivable that fifty-two years after the abolition of catechesis that ninety percent of the baptized have no accurate conception of Roman Catholic doctrine and dogma, no means to reason as a Roman Catholic, and have adopted the stance of polite thoughtless secular materialists.
    That percentage could reasonable be higher.
    Lets assume the remaining ten percent are engaged with some sort of informed Catholic reasoning. Only those whose engagement is underpinned by authentic devotion as well as an adult grasp of the current of the faith — even without academic credentials — can honestly be regarded as in the spiritual battle. The others are looking for an affirmation of personal moral comportment and perspective that for some strange reason of their own requires “ecclesiastical” approbation.
    The question remains for them to answer. Why continue to appropriate the moniker “Roman Catholic” when your faith stance does not conform to Roman Catholicism?
    What is the need? The answer to that question would clarify, resolve and I dare say set many a soul free.

    • I preached today on the Saints and invited the parishioners to imagine beholding the whole world on a plain and to see if they could number them? Then I said, let us imagine 10 percent of the world and see if we could number them by looking upon them? Now, we can understand the vast uncountable number of the White Robed Saints beheld by St. John who are the faithful remnant.

      If you are so inclined, try imaging beholding 10 percent of today’s Catholics on a plain and see if you could number them. Even the Remnant is a vast number, thanks be to God.

      And that is just with today’s Population, now imagine beholding all of the Faithful throughout time on that plain! Blessed Be God Forever. Amen. Let us be sure to amongst them.

      • God reward you, Father.
        You remind us that the “sensum fidelum” includes that vast crowd of witnesses conformed to Christ who have gone before us from the battle into eternal Beatitude. It always amazes me how these living witnesses are consigned to the trash heap of human history by the vast horde of our “theologically” astute contemporaries in high places who have no belief in anything besides the latest snap of one of their synapse — that event regarded as mystical insight.
        Would that they only had more of a focus on the apse…
        For some reason the thought of St. Therese of the Child Jesus and of the Holy Face writing the Creed in her own blood comes to mind.
        But that would be thought far too extreme in the current pontificate…

  8. At a time when all seemed lost centuries ago, a great saint said “They may have the buildings, but we have the Faith.” In my life, I have not suffered for my Faith. I have not had to walk with Our Lord on His Passion. I have not had to ask God “Why have you forsaken me?” Now I will have to do just that, suffer. What an incredible large and holy boat I must get in! Thank you, Lord, for this opportunity to walk with you. Please do not let me let You down. I want to suffer for You as You did for the world. Perhaps we all should remember what Jesus said to us in these times: “If they have persecuted Me, they will also persecute you.” Bring it on. I stand ready with my brothers and sisters in the Catholic Faith to walk with Him to Golgotha.

  9. The Sin of Despair (From the Catholic Encyclopedia via New Advent:

    Despair (Latin desperare, to be hopeless.) Despair, ethically regarded, is the voluntary and complete abandonment of all hope of saving one’s soul and of having the means required for that end. It is not a passive state of mind: on the contrary it involves a positive act of the will by which a person deliberately gives over any expectation of ever reaching eternal life. There is presupposed an intervention of the intellect in virtue of which one comes to decide definitely that salvation is impossible. This last is motived by the persuasion either that the individual’s sins are too great to be forgiven or that it is too hard for human nature to cooperate with the grace of God or that Almighty God is unwilling to aid the weakness or pardon the offenses of his creatures, etc.

    It is obvious that a mere anxiety, no matter how acute, as to the hereafter is not to be identified with despair. This excessive fear is usually a negative condition of soul and adequately discernible from the positive elements which clearly mark the vice which we call despair. The pusillanimous person has not so much relinquished trust in God as he is unduly terrified at the spectacle of his own shortcomings of incapacity.

    The sin of despair may sometimes, although not necessarily, contain the added malice of heresy in so far as it implies an assent to a proposition which is against faith, e.g. that God has no mind to supply us with what is needful for salvation.

    Despair as such and as distinguished from a certain difference, sinking of the heart, or overweening dread is always a mortal sin. The reason is that it contravenes with a special directness certain attributes of Almighty God, such as His goodness, mercy, and faith-keeping. To be sure despair is not the worst sin conceivable: that evil primacy is held by the direct and explicit hatred of God; neither is it as great as sins against faith like formal heresy or apostasy. Still its power for working harm in the human soul is fundamentally far greater than other sins inasmuch as it cuts off the way of escape and those who fall under its spell are frequently, as a matter of fact, found to surrender themselves unreservedly to all sorts of sinful indulgence.

    I would like to add that the Sin of Despair can include the illogically held belief (not the occasional tempting thought) that God has abandoned the Church and will not keep His promise to save Her. Tempting thoughts, even constant tempting thoughts, are not despair they are attempts to get one to despair. This is the hope and goal of the enemy. The solution is the total abandonment of the self and the Church to the almighty care and providence of God in every situation.

    We may face every hardship and distress, the Church may be torn asunder by the guile of Satan and the cooperation of man and indeed the imbecility of many of her current Shepherds, but the Church shall endure, even though she may be brought very low, for God Himself is Her Divine head.

    2 Corinthians 10:3-6: “For though we live in the world we are not carrying on a worldly war, for the weapons of our warfare are not worldly but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every proud obstacle to the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, being ready to punish every disobedience, when your obedience is complete.

    For our part let us make every thought obedient to Christ. If I am tempted to evil thoughts what shall I do? I shall surrender them to Jesus Christ immediately and by doing so renew His mind within me. If I am beset with evil thoughts against the Church let me renew my study of the Saints and the troubles they suffered. Let me renew my reading of the many difficulties that have beset the Church throughout history and see the Lord’s victory in each, thus punishing the disobedience of these thoughts with the obedience of Christ and the Saints. If I am tempted against purity, let me call to mind the purity of Christ, of the Blessed Virgin and gaze upon their blessed images and take up holy reading and prayer regarding the pure and holy life (not wasting my self on reflecting on my struggles) and surrender myself to God. Let me fast and do penance thereby punishing the disobedience of my flesh and increasing the obedience of Christ within me. The same is true of every evil thought, let me take them captive for Christ and entrust myself to Him as His grace is sufficient for me.

    The evil doers shall go down into the pit and their name shall not be remembered.

    Psalm 73

    A Psalm of Asaph.

    1Truly God is good to the upright,
    to those who are pure in heart.[a]
    2 But as for me, my feet had almost stumbled,
    my steps had well nigh slipped.
    3 For I was envious of the arrogant,
    when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.

    4 For they have no pangs;
    their bodies are sound and sleek.
    5 They are not in trouble as other men are;
    they are not stricken like other men.
    6 Therefore pride is their necklace;
    violence covers them as a garment.
    7 Their eyes swell out with fatness,
    their hearts overflow with follies.
    8 They scoff and speak with malice;
    loftily they threaten oppression.
    9 They set their mouths against the heavens,
    and their tongue struts through the earth.

    10 Therefore the people turn and praise them;[b]
    and find no fault in them.[c]
    11 And they say, “How can God know?
    Is there knowledge in the Most High?”
    12 Behold, these are the wicked;
    always at ease, they increase in riches.
    13 All in vain have I kept my heart clean
    and washed my hands in innocence.
    14 For all the day long I have been stricken,
    and chastened every morning.

    15 If I had said, “I will speak thus,”
    I would have been untrue to the generation of thy children.
    16 But when I thought how to understand this,
    it seemed to me a wearisome task,
    17 until I went into the sanctuary of God;
    then I perceived their end.
    18 Truly thou dost set them in slippery places;
    thou dost make them fall to ruin.
    19 How they are destroyed in a moment,
    swept away utterly by terrors!
    20 They are[d] like a dream when one awakes,
    on awaking you despise their phantoms.

    21 When my soul was embittered,
    when I was pricked in heart,
    22 I was stupid and ignorant,
    I was like a beast toward thee.
    23 Nevertheless I am continually with thee;
    thou dost hold my right hand.
    24Thou dost guide me with thy counsel,
    and afterward thou wilt receive me to glory.[e]
    25Whom have I in heaven but thee?
    And there is nothing upon earth that I desire besides thee.
    26 My flesh and my heart may fail,
    but God is the strength[f] of my heart and my portion for ever.

    27 For lo, those who are far from thee shall perish;
    thou dost put an end to those who are false to thee.
    28 But for me it is good to be near God;
    I have made the Lord God my refuge,
    that I may tell of all thy works.

    • Fr.RP,
      There is an excellent book by Benedict Baur OSB: In Silence With God

      One particular chapter deals with “First thought’s and emotion’s” which relate
      well to negative thinking and it’s result’s IF such consideration’s penetrate the

      • Our lord said that the Gates of Hell shall not prevail. So we believe that. Stay faithful. Pray from one’s heart. God hears.. you! Can we even imagine what He is feeling? But He sees people fighting for and with Hm to keep His Truth.. Alive in This Day of strong battle. Yet, He has already won. Amen.

    • Wow. Despairing thoughts have been CONSTANTLY with me for a few years now. Particularly the temptation “…that Almighty God is unwilling to aid the weakness or pardon the offenses of his creatures, etc.”

      • I’ve been struggling with temptations to despair too. So as per the 6th Rule of St. Ignatius I’m trying to read the parts of Scripture which emphasize His Power.

      • Francis the Heretic, in the service of Satan, has seen to it that the temptation to despair is everywhere in the Church today. If it strikes me, and it does, I recall the name of this blog and St. Peter’s inspiration that we should,

        “Be sober and watch: because your adversary, the devil, as a roaring lion, goeth about seeking whom he may devour: whom resist ye, strong in faith; knowing that the same affliction befalleth your brethren who are in the world. But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto His eternal glory in Christ Jesus, when you have suffered a little, will Himself perfect and confirm and establish you. To him be glory and dominion for ever and ever, Amen.” 1 Peter 5:8-11.

        We have no reason to despair. Every day of our travail brings us closer to the day of the triumph of Christ the King.

    • Dear Father,

      That’s Psalm 72 in the Douay-Rheims version of the Bible. This is Psalm 73 in the Douay-Rheims Bible:

      Ut quid, Deus. A prayer of the church under grievous persecutions.

      [1] Understanding for Asaph. O God, why hast thou cast us off unto the end: why is thy wrath enkindled against the sheep of thy pasture? [2] Remember thy congregation, which thou hast possessed from the beginning. The sceptre of thy inheritance which thou hast redeemed: mount Sion in which thou hast dwelt. [3] Lift up thy hands against their pride unto the end; see what things the enemy hath done wickedly in the sanctuary. [4] And they that hate thee have made their boasts, in the midst of thy solemnity. They have set up their ensigns for signs, [5] And they knew not both in the going out and on the highest top. As with axes in a wood of trees,

      [4] “Their ensigns”: They have fixed their colours for signs and trophies, both on the gates, and on the highest top of the temple: and they knew not, that is, they regarded not the sanctity of the place. This psalm manifestly foretells the time of the Machabees, and the profanation of the temple by Antiochus.

      [6] They have cut down at once the gates thereof, with axe and hatchet they have brought it down. [7] They have set fire to thy sanctuary: they have defiled the dwelling place of thy name on the earth. [8] They said in their heart, the whole kindred of them together: Let us abolish all the festival days of God from the land. [9] Our signs we have not seen, there is now no prophet: and he will know us no more. [10] How long, O God, shall the enemy reproach: is the adversary to provoke thy name for ever?

      [11] Why dost thou turn away thy hand: and thy right hand out of the midst of thy bosom for ever? [12] But God is our king before ages: he hath wrought salvation in the midst of the earth. [13] Thou by thy strength didst make the sea firm: thou didst crush the heads of the dragons in the waters. [14] Thou hast broken the heads of the dragon: thou hast given him to be meat for the people of the Ethiopians. [15] Thou hast broken up the fountains and the torrents: thou hast dried up the Ethan rivers.

      [13] “The sea firm”: By making the waters of the Red Sea stand like firm walls, whilst Israel passed through: and destroying the Egyptians called here dragons from their cruelty, in the same waters, with their king: casting up their bodies on the shore to be stripped by the Ethiopians inhabiting in those days the coast of Arabia.

      [15] “Ethan rivers”: That is, rivers which run with strong streams. This was verified in Jordan, Jos. 3, and in Arnon, Num. 21. 14.

      [16] Thine is the day, and thine is the night: thou hast made the morning light and the sun. [17] Thou hast made all the borders of the earth: the summer and the spring were formed by thee. [18] Remember this, the enemy hath reproached the Lord: and a foolish people hath provoked thy name. [19] Deliver not up to beasts the souls that confess to thee: and forget not to the end the souls of thy poor. [20] Have regard to thy covenant: for they that are the obscure of the earth have been filled with dwellings of iniquity.

      [20] “The obscure of the earth”: Mean and ignoble wretches have been filled, that is, enriched, with houses of iniquity, that is, with our estates and possessions, which they have unjustly acquired.

      [21] Let not the humble be turned away with confusion: the poor and needy shall praise thy name. [22] Arise, O God, judge thy own cause: remember thy reproaches with which the foolish man hath reproached thee all the day. [23] Forget not the voices of thy enemies: the pride of them that hate thee ascendeth continually.


      I thought it didn’t look right somehow because in our Divine Liturgy, Psalm 73 verses 2 & 12 are the Alleluia verses for the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, the Third Sunday of the Great Fast (Lent) and almost every Friday of the year (like tomorrow ????) with a few exceptions. (I’m Ukrainian Greek Catholic. Same pope, different Liturgy.)

    • I think many of us mistake working out of our salvation in fear and trembling with despair, a confusion that can then lead to…DESPAIR!!

      We STRUGGLE because that is the only thing men trusting in God can do in a world so gravely disordered. Indeed, we have Jesus promising us troubles (1)!

      I submit that when we truly accept the struggle for what it is, hard, difficult, confusing, then we will find peace.

      It is in false expectations that despair creeps in.

      Working out our salvation does not mean rolling out of bed every day with “good feelings” abounding. Working out of our salvation is the knowledge that the struggle in which we fight is already won by our Savior, but we must be tested in this crucible of fire before we can wear the crown of victory!

      (1) St Jn 16:33
      (2) 1Cor 3:13, 1 Cor 9:25

  10. Interesting: Our Lord promised that Brittany and the Vendee will be spared the chastisements, they will be a sanctuary amidst the coming storms of punishment because of the blood they shed valiantly for the Faith and the King. Their deaths were certainly not in vain, they bought a precious grace for thier descendants.

    Also, we must not lose our inner peace and dispair, no matter how bad it looks! Marie-Julie Jahenny was told that we displease Our Lord when we lose our inner peace amidst our crosses. She was also warned, we must be prepared, stand peacefully and do not retaliate, we will be martyrs in many ways, spiritually, in our daily lives, and yes, another time of blood and persecution, martyrs will be needed to purify the Church again:

  11. I just wonder what would have happened if a group of muslim’s would have come in and started praying at this Cathedral? Do you really think that they would have been mocked and hauled away by the police? They probably would have received a standing ovation and congratulations on participating in the ecumenical gathering.

  12. Does it strike anybody else that this insane idea that we are infinitesimally small in number, and using social media to seem bigger, and on and on and on sound like just another retread of exactly what was said of conservatives in 2016? They are lobbing at us just an ecclesiastical form of the “you are the deplorables” argument which Hillary used. And who is in charge now? The truth always outs. Stand firm, don’t give in, don’t despair and don’t for a moment think you are alone!! There are plenty of folks who don’t call themselves traditionalists who believe as we do.

    • Fr Benjamin Sanchez relates in ‘The Last Times’ how the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart was made known to the stigmatist Marthe Robin by Our Lord:

      ‘I play with the plans of men. My right hand prepares miracles and My Name shall be glorified in all the world. I shall be pleased to break the pride of the wicked much more when the world will be most hostile to all that is supernatural. And much more admirable and extraordinary will be the event that will come out of the encounters.’

      ‘In the place of the throne of the Beast, two glorious thrones will arise, one of My Sacred Heart and the other of
      the Immaculate Heart of Mary.’

      ‘Then it will be understood that neither human power. nor demons, nor the genius of industry will end the war
      …. it will end only when reparation has been consummated.’

      ‘Be courageous for the Kingdom of God is near. It will begin with something that will come so suddenly as to be

    • Mickens can blow it out his ear. If we adjust the numbers to exclude,
      both the scores and scores of practical apostates who should no longer
      be counted as Catholics, along with the countless faithful who just
      aren’t paying attention to the Great Collapse (but would be appalled if
      they were), the figure approaches 100%; that is, of those who are
      faithful to Church Tradition and are paying attention to the gross
      departure from it in Rome, there is virtually no one who isn’t opposed
      to Francis’ initiatives.

      But please, Mickens, keep telling
      yourself we amount to nothing. It will give you something to reflect on
      when the Holy Ghost restore Sacred Tradition on the ash heap of the
      Bergoglian pyre.

      • The ignoratti comprise a HUGE amount of Catholics today, mostly due to bad Vat II catechetics. They don’t even know what they don’t know. One guy I work with for example is typical, he doesn’t attend mass weekly (and was shocked to hear I did) and is a freemason who doesn’t attend many lodge meetings either. Guys like this are the typical American “catholic” these days. What would this guy know about Francis or the “crisis in the Church”? Probably nothing more than what he heard on cable news.

        • Amen, Brian and J Peterman. I have only anecdotal evidence, but have taught a number of classes of adults who have shown enough interest in learning their faith to sign up for and then attend the weekday evening sessions at the N.O. parish. Nearly all of them attend Mass at least weekly. The extent of their ignorance of basic Church teachings is astounding, as is their ignorance of most traditional prayers and devotions.

          A couple of years ago I helped host a parish luncheon for teachers of children’s religious ed classes. For the opening prayer before the pastor blessed the meal, I thought it would be nice to pray the Angelus. In a group of about thirty volunteer teachers ranging in age from late 30’s to early 60’s, not a single one of them knew the prayer. Not one. And the DRE couldn’t figure out why I thought that was significant, most likely because she didn’t know it, either. This is the DRE for a parish of over 6000 families. But she knows all the words to every Marty Haugen, Dan Schutte and Bernadette Farrell song our guitar-strumming Music Director lets us hear on Sundays.

    • We may be small in number, but someone has to speak out for the smallest of God’s gifts;
      the UBNBORN.
      I’m off the topic, but this is something being ignored by U.S. bishops.
      A U.S. House committee is holding a hearing today on a bill to stop abortions on babies with detectable heartbeats.
      Tell your Rep. to VOTE YES on H.R. 490

      • our church and most of its members (clerical and lay) pay only lip service to the sanctity of life. For most its an inconvenient truth.

    • Yes, I’m fairly poorly catechised, but a regular at mass (NO). I agree with what’s said, I’m getting more knowledgeable. I do my best to stand up and be counted for our faith, our traditions and Our Lady! I am in awe of the story of the Vendeeans. I hope that we are all ready for the battle. Dieu le Roi!

  13. Guessing numbers I tend to think that if there are 1.2 billion baptized, from which 5% attends Mass, and of that 60 million, 10% believes every thing in the Cathecism and the Creed, there are, grosso modo, 6 million Catholics,and all the Saints and Angels. Not bad. At the Cross were just 4.

  14. I can’t tell you, Steve, how many times I have received comparable, “go drink a nice cup of chamomile tea, dear,” advice, especially from clerical sources (not all, of course; but some). You would think that the “one thing necessary” in this life is to abstain from emotional agitation absolutely, rather than by the grace of God to endeavor to save one’s wretched soul. What would happen if we carried this type of quietism over into other areas as well?

    Suppose one goes to the doctor and he, upon concluding his examination, were to remark, “I agree that your symptoms are quite alarming, but the main thing is to stay calm. By all means, don’t bother to quit smoking, or to diet, or to exercise! I am not going to prescribe anything, or order any procedures, either. Just do what you’ve always done and, if things get worse or you are worried in any way, distract yourself as best you can.”

    Time to seek a second opinion!

    Churchill to the Brits: “It’s a bloody mess we’re in, God knows, but the key is to pay as little attention as possible. Plug your ears when you hear those bombs falling on our little island, because what can one person do about them, anyway? Wait, what? Did I say, ‘bombs’?”

    Reagan: “Mr. Gorbachev, I steadfastly refuse to concern myself about your stupid wall in the first place!”

    I don’t follow “chamomile” advice, when it comes my way. The problem is that the priests dishing it out cannot be accused of hypocrisy at any level; judging by their homilies and bulletin articles, they sure do practice what they fail to preach!

    “If I forget you, Jerusalem, may my right hand be forgotten! May my tongue cleave to my palate if I remember you not; if I place not Jerusalem ahead of my joy ” (Ps. 137:5-6).

    • Well you probably are not going to like this, but if there’s a tiny chance…

      I don’t know what those clerics are saying to you – but I think that saying “calm down” is not the same thing as saying “don’t do anything”. I do think that it is of the utmost importance not to let your emotions off the leash because doing so impairs your ability to reason. And you need to be able to reason in an emergency like this. You don’t see EMTs at an emergency frantically running around screaming. They figure out what their job is and how they can help and then they do it.

      Figure out what your job is (I’d say “discern” but – gag) and then do it. The analogy with Churchill, Reagan, etc. doesn’t quite work because – I’m going to go out on a limb here and guess – you are not the leader of a nation. Everyone has a different job. Your job may “only” be prayer, fasting and penance. It could be something else. I have no idea. Once you figure out what your job is, do it. Don’t let your mind wander into other people’s territory wondering what their job is and if they are doing it (spoiler: they aren’t). That is only going to get you upset and distract you from getting your job done well.

      Pray. Do your job. Allow God to give the increase.

      • Well said. I do sympathize with Helen Weir, however. While the “calm down” approach is not what Steve got from his confessor, it has happened frequently in my own experience.

      • Everyone’s job, including mine, is to do the will of God, which is the will of the Immaculata, without any limit whatsoever.

        If you notice, I was comparing not myself, but those in authority in the Church, with Churchill and Reagan (an imperfect analogy itself, admittedly).

        “Calm down” does mean “don’t do anything” in the sense that many of us are currently encountering such advice. Prayer isn’t an alternative to knowing what is going on and witnessing to the Truth currently under assault, in any and every way we can. Framed as a security blanket to shield oneself and other people from reality, prayer would cease to be prayer at all.

        The point of the Churchill remark is that everyone, from greatest to least, must recognize what is happening in this ecclesial crisis we are facing and must steel ourselves to do whatever it takes to become a counterwitness to the Bergoglian onslaught. Our leaders ought to be waking us up to this crisis, not lulling us back to sleep.

        But I do agree with what I understand to be your main point–that “only supernatural means lead to a supernatural end” (St. Maximilian). Without prayer, no amount of “doing” anything is going to make any difference, anyway.

  15. There is a desperation among the revisionists to race ahead and complete the revolution they began at the Council. I believe they realize that they have only one generation to accomplish their project, because they have no offspring, either spiritual or physical. It is a campaign that is like a frenzied death wish and it will kill off much of the current manifestation of the Church. But the small remnant is determined and will become mighty in time, by the grace of God.

  16. From Fr Oko’s article ‘With the Pope against homoheresy’:

    ‘To say “I am leaving the Church because it is too evil for me, and too sinful” is to say that apparently “I am too good for it”, to say, in a way, that “I am a better, a more valuable person than Mother Theresa, or even Our Lady or Lord Jesus himself”, since for them that Church is good enough to stay in, to love and protect.’

      • You’re welcome. Fr Oko has helped me a lot. Think of all the chaos and confusion at Jesus’ Crucifixion and all the Bishops (bar one) nowhere to be seen, silent. Even more chaotic than today’s crucifixion of His Mystical Body. Our Lady and St John weren’t ‘too good’ to hold firm with Him.

  17. Good morning, I’m very happy to see those brave souls reciting the holy rosary. If it hadn’t been for them the whole incident would have passed unnoticed. The article is written about despair which sadly is everywhere at the moment. To try and counteract this my thoughts were drawn to something that our priest once told us. When he entered the seminary as a young man the teaching was a liberal, terrible mish mash of nonsense. Some of his brother priests said to him “let us comply and when we are set free to administer the sacraments in our own parish we can revert back to the truth” sadly those that chose this path did not revert back to the truth. However a small group within the seminary kept fighting back and refused to adapt and made it to become priests. This happened 30 years ago and that small group are still today holding the line, in fact one has had approx. 20 young people pursue holy orders from his parish.

  18. The sense of despair sets in when we are confronted with an evil that seems impossible to remedy. WITH the “Dubia” of the four Cardinals having been ignored by Francis for over a year now and two of the authoring Cardinals having passed away; the Correctio Filialis being countered by a statement of support for Francis by the liberal and apostate intelligentsia, the prospect of a Consecration of Russia by the Holy Father in union with all the Bishops of the world non existent; the Cardinalate stacked with clones of Francis such that as things stand today the next pontiff would only take up where Francis left off; a Third World War ready to break out at any time; the Muslims massacring at will and the hierarchy spouting the New Age mantra that we ignore their slaughtering and embrace them, as well as accommodating everyone with whatever perverted persuasion they profess; Francis all the while acting feverishly and with impunity to bring about a One World Religion, while whatever we my try to do to remedy the situation seems futile, is certainly enough to tempt one to despair. On the one hand we must not forget that God is in control and that He WILL, in His own time and Providence, help us to see the “light at the end of the tunnel” On the other, perhaps it is a matter of a misreading of the situation!!! Our Lady told us that “In the end my Immaculate Heart will triumph; Russia will be consecrated and an era of peace will be granted”. Yet, with bated breath waiting for Francis or his successors to make the Consecration of Russia we only risk suffocating. So what is the alternative; how will it be done? How can we restore that hope that has been lost?

    I have been trying for several years now to alert the Faithful to the FACT that Benedict is still THE TRUE POPE–that he never resigned from the Office. And if all faithful Catholics, including those Cardinals and Bishops who are opposed to Francis, would only acknowledge this and unitedly, fearlessly and loudly proclaim him as the true Head of the Mystical Body of Christ, I believe that hope would return, Russia could be consecrated, and Satan, whom Our Lady warned would infiltrate the Church, would be defeated. This would take some doing by trusted leaders in order to obtain a concerted and timely overthrow of the false Pope, but it would be a solution that IS plausible. Mr. Skojec should be familiar with the arguments put forth as to why Benedict is still Pope, and I pray he will give this suggestion some thought–his despondency has been noticeably increasing over the past several months. Let not the temptation to despair as well as a growing lack of Charity among so many of the faithful, as well as each one independently “doing his own thing” continue to plague us. What is needed is for a few respected leaders to work together to sound the charge. Pray to Our Lady for enlightenment.

    • Fr., Benedict’s status will become moot once he shuffles off this mortal coil. I can’t see Francis doing anything to really jeoparize his position until Ratzinger is dead. Once he’s gone I expect there to be no restraint.

      • Dear Deacon Augustine, this is precisely why something should be done NOW. I don’t know how much more he can jeopardize his position than the rapprochement the with the Masons this month. HE has certainly enough experience at this point to know how to avoid expressing explicit heresy.

  19. “So no, we will not be silent. We will not give in to despair. We will, like the Vendeans before us, stand firm against overwhelming odds, shouting our battle cry: Dieu, le Roi! God, the King!”

    You are waxing eloquent these days, Steve, most Churchilian. Please keep it up. We must all keep it up. Who else is going to represent Jesus Christ in these catastrophic times for the Church so evidently corrupted at the top?

    “Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven.” Matthew 10:32

      • Read this and you will be required to think again. Perhaps you are mistaken, perhaps you are a Freemason (like Salza was/is?) but there can be no question since Vatican 2 there has been a problem and it’s getting worse. The more i read about Sedevacantism the more I see they may have some Truth in what they write’s-straw-man-arguments-against-sedevacantism/

          • Brian: Anyone looking at the situation in the church today can only be left with one conclusion, these men running the show at the Vatican do not appear Catholic, otherwise please explain why the Vatican would produce a stamp supporting the heretic Luther and all the other steps that are blatantly Anti Catholic ? Sedevecantists make some very valid points, where the first Popes Freemasons? I think they are owed an answer from the people in Authority but they don’t get one. Catholics priests have a tendency to defend V2 because it contains „some good bits“ without being willing to acknowledge that it only takes one drop of poison to make the whole cake poisonous. The question is whether we have all been fooled, does that not concern you?

          • I will take a look at your Freemasons articles but Brian please understand I am not saying that Sedevacantism has it all right, I know to little about it. What I am saying is that they bring up some valid points that any Catholic who is looking to understand the Truth of the Faith would also agree needs answering. Interestingly the Vatican is launching a book called Sedevacantism it seems that Pope Francis is somewhat concerned at the doubts people have over his Papacy.

          • Brian, I read your article the three parts about masonry infiltrating the church, eye opening stuff! I was struck by one line you wrote „ it is not the intent of this essay to prove that the devotees of The New Theology were themselves Masons. It’s certainly a possibility, but ultimately it doesn’t really matter.“ How can that not ultimately matter, if they were Masons then they were automatically not Catholics. Also at the beginning of your article you state how you are a faithful son of the Church, with what you know about V2 and the Freemason influences do you not question if the church since V2 and the Novus Ordo Mass are actually deceptions? I am only learning about this whole situation now, I find it astounding that this has been going on for so many years and so many Catholics have just accepted it.

          • Brian , the below comment you made also has me somewhat baffled „I also assert that it is possible to launch such a critical analysis from a place of orthodoxy; faithful sons of the Church, in full communion with Rome (as I am), need not fear to tread where we are going. Instead, we must consider objectively the manifold evidence for the following conclusions:“ Your article is well written and explains more or less that there has been a stitch up since Vatican 2. But the article leaves us hanging in the air, if what you write is true, and the evidence seems to indicate more clearly by the day that the church Since V2 is under the control of imposters, ( of course Christ is ultimately in control and allowing this ) are you saying we should nevertheless remain faithful sons of the church in full communion with Rome? What do you mean by that, should we accept what is happening and accept this Pope as valid ?

          • God has given His Church, not us, the divine mandate, competence, and authority to declare and determine who is the pope. If somehow the entire institution has been hijacked to such a degree that there truly is no pope or visible Church at all, it is not our job to noddle this out, much less declare it to the world. To begin with, none of us could ever know this for certain, and moreover we lack to the divine mandate to do anything about it. Should such a thing ever occur our task would be have faith that Christ will ultimately right the ship, and then to wait on Him to use those He has authorized to guide her to make the appropriate declarations. In the meantime, we hold fast to Sacred Tradition, and resist all errors to contrary.

          • Brian, thanks for your links to the articles you wrote. May I ask what Catechism you read and also which Bible. I am curious to know as I bought the JP2 Catechism and I am not sure about it being the real faith do you use a pre V2 Catechism , thanks for your advice and God bless Paul

  20. I am celebrating my own anniversary of sorts. It has been 45 years since I attended a Novus Ordo service. None of my children or 37 grandchildren have ever attended it. What is going on in Rome with Pope Francis is the natural and logical development of Vatican II. It is the expected fruit. What is happening today is actually more hopeful than at any time in the past because we know from Catholic prophecy that it will not last long. We are entering the last chapters before the denouement. The corruption of Pope Francis is so evident that conservative Catholics who have been the constant cross for the faithful are turning their faces to the cold wind. But until they recognize that there is not an ounce of difference between Pope John Paul II, Pope Benedict and Pope Francis there will be nothing left but despair. These popes have all traveled down the same road only going a little further. It was Pope Benedict who predicted in his December address to the clergy in Rome before his abdication that the “council of the media” was over and we were entering the “time of the true council”, it is the “end of the old church and the beginning of the new”. Pope Francis is the “true council of Vatican II”. He is the standard bearer of the “new church”. Sedevacantists and conservative Catholics share the same error in that they have made the pope their rule of faith and therefore despair necessarily follows. Both groups have for years denied the literal meaning of dogma. It is dogma that is the proximate rule of faith and the pope is so only secondarily and accidentally. If there is a sense of hopelessness today it is only because most of those conservative Catholics who are repulsed by Pope Francis long for the “council of the media” and not the truth of Catholic Dogma.


    • Drew, the “true” Second Vatican Council came to a halt on October 13, 1962 (yes, that’s right, on the anniversary of the final apparition and miracle of the sun at Fatima) when Cardinal Lienart (revealed in 1976 to be a Freemason) forced a vote to replace the leadership of the Council and the membership of its commissions and reject the original schemas prepared by the Council’s Preparatory Commission over the course of the previous three years. Josef Ratzinger was in on the coup d’etat. This most likable Modernist has been deluding himself for 55 years about this Council.

      Thank you for your excellent post.

  21. “For example, opposition to Francis is emanating most energetically from the English-speaking world, certain parts of Europe and in areas of Africa where the pope’s critics tend to be younger (under the age of 50), doctrinally rigid and liturgically “retrodox” members of the clergy.”

    How much fun can we have with this – especially coming from Robert Mickens, once dismissed from the Tablet(!) for expressing a public death wish against the very same Pope Benedict XVI he now finds temporarily useful?

    “For example, aggressively liberal papalotry to Francis is emanating most energetically from the English-speaking world, certain parts of Europe and in areas of Latin America where the pope’s critics tend to be quite elderly (over the age of 60), doctrinally indifferentist and liturgically “adventurous” members of the clergy.”

    If open opposition to Francis remains a small minority, it’s also true that the faction represented by Mickens is extremely small and geographically focused itself – and, unlike the opposition, is in far more demographic danger.

  22. Isn’t it when all seems lost that God is most present?

    Isn’t it only when we are reduced to practically nothing that God can act most profoundly within the silence of our hearts?

    There’s no room for despair in the heart of any true follower of Christ. Yes, there is and will be suffering, even to the extreme. We HAVE to suffer because we will never see God if we do not. But despair has no place. It is ultimately the devil acting upon the secret pride we all have buried within our hearts- that “I don’t deserve this.”

    We don’t deserve anything because Christ didn’t deserve the Cross, the same Christ who cried out to heaven asking why God had forsaken Him as He died in agony.

    The Cross will always be a secret scandal to even to the most devout Catholic in this world until he or she takes it up themselves.

  23. Thank you, Steve, for this article! I would say: when the ancient prophecies are fulfilled there is more reason to hope! John Paul II said that we approach a new spring of the Spirit. I think he had a prophetic vision. Of course, these springs yield flowers and fruits which are watered with the blood of martyrs! Today the majority of martyrs are poisoned or suffer “accidents”. But they are martyrs all the same, and their sacrifice and their prayers give life to the Church. The invisible dimension of their sacrifice cannot be destroyed by satan and his satelites!

  24. I have noticed the church where I go to Traditional Mass , which is a NO church, has a banner “commemorating the reformation” on the outer fence by the parking lot . It really angers me to see that. I’m going there tonight for Latin Mass, All Saints Day, so I’ll have to see it. I don’t know how they can put that up. I remember that Church when there were communion rails and the “runway” and Cramner table wasn’t there. It’s a beautiful church. Heart breaking. I’m surprised someone hasn’t torn the banner down….. now wouldn’t THAT be a shame.

  25. “Dieu, le Roi!” Most excellent article!! May God have mercy on this Papacy.


    My church she is a Catholic
    But some like Luther’s view
    Or say it doesn’t matter that
    Hank killed some Saints, a few.

    He also had oh, several wives
    And took some of their heads
    But Church of England called him first
    That stallion of all beds.

    Carthusians, smarthusians
    In habits hung around
    Quiet not like Campion
    Beth brought that braggart down.

    And merry, Margaret Clitherow
    Oh, what a cheeky dame
    Hiding priests behind her skirts
    Liz crushed her little game.

    Then Thomas More, oh what a bore
    They pleaded some did cry,
    “Let horny Hank play his bed prank
    Just nod and wink an eye!”

    Some Bishops say, “That’s long ago.
    Those times are of past scene.”
    Now, “Who are we to judge?” They ask
    “Just make sure you go green!”

    And on some Altars relics,
    Rigid, martyred by Hank’s lust –
    Bishops bent with sin’s intent
    Will burn us ash to dust.

  26. Robert Mickens is a flaming faggot who desperately wants to believe that the man who will let him put his willy up whoever he fancies is only opposed by a tiny minority. Its in his own self-interest to paint the opposition to Francis as a tiny faction of “traddy nut-jobs”.

    The reality may be that the opposition is a minority at the moment, but it is certainly not a tiny minority – nor is it an insignificant one, especially in the Roman Curia. I keep being surprised by signs of opposition to Francis in unexpected places and its vehemence. Only a few months ago I was helping lead a retreat far from home and I got talking to some priests over lunch. They didn’t know me from Adam, but one piped up out of nowhere: “You realize a schism is coming, don’t you, and Francis isn’t likely to side with the Catholics?” These were men who were making plans, but they weren’t ready to stick their necks out until the time and the initiative was right. I know many priests who would have signed the Correctio Filialis, but they didn’t think this was the right time to lay everything on the line.

    Francis is the right man at the right time to bring the N.O. ecuchurch to its knees. He is the tool that God will use to bring Catholics to their senses and pseudo-catholics to their destruction. There is no cause for despair only more reason for fidelity.

  27. People in the anti-Francis camp also show tendencies toward a very narrow understanding of the application of Canon Law, a slavish devotion to liturgical rubricism and an outdated Euro-centric view of the world that is rooted in classical Greco-Roman philosophical systems.

    Ah, so actual Roman Catholics, then. Those evil bastards that brought you Christianity, and all that the history and traditions of the Church entails, they’re the ones who are anti-Francis? Sounds like a team I’d want to be a part of. Sounds like a Catholic alt-right.

  28. For some reason this article absolutely cheered me up.

    I think the line that brought me the biggest smile is “I can tell you that in the past month, we’ve logged 325 visits from The Holy See — a city state with a population of only 1,000 people”.

    Pope Francis, we know you are listening!!

    God is not mocked. What we sow we will reap. What even you sow you will reap. And a grave sin remains in the presumption of God’s mercy!

    For He is just as well, and it is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of the living God!!

  29. God always employs the small and humble to confound the great and proud – examples: a poor family in a most insignificant place “And Nathanael said to him: Can any thing of good come from Nazareth?” [John 1:46]; just twelve mostly uneducated apostles chosen to convert the world; the three little seers of Fatima to bring Our Lady’s pleas and warnings to the world etc. etc. If Mr Mickens isn’t fearful already he should be, precisely because it is only a small number who are standing up for the truth today. “The kingdom of heaven is like to leaven, which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal, until the whole was leavened.” [Matthew 13:33]. Mr Mickens and friends, be afraid, be very afraid.

  30. Those like Mickens who play the numbers game should bear in mind that it is of little consolation to the damned that only “a minority of a minority” enjoys the Beatific Vision.

  31. Well what we saw in Belgium is soon coming to churches near us. That Catholics will have no place in their own Church, and are an embarrassment, are seen as fanatics and fundamentalists – this is the saddest thing and I believe marks a new stage in the deconstruction of the human part of the Catholic Church. I feel great sympathy for these young people – how must they feel? Have they any leaders to care for them?

  32. The 12 Apostles were a minority within a minority of the Roman Empire. People who point up the fewness of the number of true Catholics sound scared, like they bet their life savings on Goliath.

    Look what a dozen nice Jewish boys accomplished! God’s is the increase; our only job is to be faithful.

  33. The inserted picture is very interesting in one critical aspect – the majority are all aged and grey-haired; the ‘resistance’ are all young, strong and with a future. It is the young who will outlive this evil Papacy and continue to work and pray in the future for the rebuilding of the Church. As for Mr Mickens, well, we may be “the minority within a minority” but we have you worried, otherwise you wouldn’t bother writing about us.

  34. That chap ‘Mickens’ clearly does not have a clue about what he writes….his is wishful thinking. I invite him to see my emails, my facebook page, the blogs I follow….and see that the faithful laity are growing in big numbers the world over…all upset, disgusted, angry, disappointed, horrified, betrayed at the behaviour of Pope Francis and his conniving minions.At first we were regularly forgiving Pope F. for the strange and hurtful remarks he made, putting it down to his lack of fluency in English, his age, etc. but then it carried on in other languages and they all translated as deliberate, nasty and unCatholic. Pope F.’s deliberate deconstructing Church teachings is evil. He knows what he is doing….his is not just a bumbling old man. He is hurtful, offensive and rude. He is the seventh Pope in my lifetime and I have never ever seen anything like the behaviour of this current Pope.

  35. “Christ made promises about His Church, and they’re being broken.” Perhaps I misunderstand you but this statement is incorrect. Christ promised that the Church would not fail (it can’t because it is His) but he also wondered when He returned whether he would find any faith on earth. I have thought that this means that the Church is likely to be very small on His return. Whether the Church revives and we have more time to wait is not for us to know but I would state that we need to be like the wise virgins, with our wicks trimmed and spare oil, our wedding garments spotless and ready to party! Keep up the good work Steve and know that there are plenty praying for you even if we are too broke to contribute.

  36. I like the Novus Ordo Mass and chose to attend a parish which offers it so I cannot be
    accused of having a prejudice in favor of the Latin Mass.

    Desire to defend the true teachings of the Holy Roman Catholic Church is found throughout
    the world and in all faithful Catholic communities. Those who want to undermine the
    foundations of the Church try to divide the Church into fringe communities. But
    we, cradle Catholics and converts, charismatics and contemplatives, laity and
    religious, we are the Church and must stand together to defend Truth. We are the
    instruments of the Holy Spirit and we will defend and preserve God’s One, Holy,
    Catholic and Apostolic Church. Those who wish to destroy the Church are the
    few, we are the many and with our Good God’s help we will prevail.


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