Tag: Catholic doctrine

Madiran’s Philosophy

Madiran's Philosophy posted in Eleison Comments on October 17, 2020

Like Pope Pius X in his great anti-modernist Encyclical of 1907, Pascendi, Jean Madiran in his book “The Heresy of the 20th Century” starts out from philosophy, because both of them see that the problem which makes it so difficult for modern minds really to grasp Catholicism is rather philosophical than theological. Thus the first of six Parts of Madiran’s book has for its title “Philosophical Preamble.”

Surprisingly, Madiran himself tells readers that they can skip the Preamble if they like, but that can only have been to spare many a modern reader who is rightly allergic to the delinquent nonsense which proceeds from the so-called “universities” of today. In fact, the argument of Madiran’s book is as dependent on true philosophy as it is independent of today’s “philosophistry,” or pseudo-philosophy.

But how and why can supernatural Faith be so dependent on philosophy, which is the rational study of all natural reality, the raising of (true) common sense, from an amateur to a professional level, so to speak? Answer, a good wine-maker does not depend on clean and uncracked glass bottles to make good wine, but he cannot run his wine business without such bottles, because if all the bottles are dirty inside, nobody is going to buy his wine, however good it is. The wine-maker presupposes that he will get automatically clean bottles. Compared with the wine, the glass bottle is worth next to nothing when it is empty of wine, but it is absolutely necessary without cracks or dirt for the wine-maker to contain his wine.

Now human reason is like the bottle. It is only a natural faculty but by the time it reaches death it is meant on pain of eternal condemnation to contain the supernatural wine of the Faith (Mk. XVI, 16). The Faith is a supreme gift of God by which a man’s reason is supernaturally elevated to believe , but if that faculty of reason is fouled up by human errors and misbeliefs, then like the dirty bottle it risks fouling up God’s wine of belief, however divine that belief is in itself. Now just a little dirt in the bottle will spoil the wine it contains, but modernism in the mind is such a radical error that it will spoil, or undermine, any Faith poured into that mind. And as wine poured into a dirty bottle cannot help being spoiled, so Catholic Faith poured into a modern mind can hardly help being undermined. So teach Pius X, de Corte, Calderón and Madiran, along with all others who have grasped the full objective malice of a modernist mind.

So how does Madiran in particular prove that the French bishops in the 1960’s were out of their Catholic minds? He starts out from an official declaration of theirs in December of 1966 (p. 40) where they affirm that “for a philosophical mind,” the words “person” and “nature,” crucial for Christology (Catholic theology of Christ) have changed their meaning since the time of Boethius (who hammered out the definition of “person”) and of Aquinas (who did similarly for “nature”). In other words, for the French bishops modern philosophy has left behind the Church’s classic philosophy embedded in unchanging Church doctrine, so that for them, thomism is obsolete “for a philosophical mind,” and to be discarded.

But in a Church whose doctrine always corresponded to what never changes in extra-mental reality, this perspective of the French bishops is absolutely revolutionary. It can only mean, says Madiran (43), that they are accepting the Copernican revolution in philosophy of Immanuel Kant (1724–1804), who placed “reality”no longer outside but inside the mind. However (45, 46), there is no obligation, except in Kantian philosophy, to accept this internalising of reality. Only on its own premisses must one arrive at its unreal conclusions. By their moral choice of Kant over Aquinas, the French bishops were in fact demonstrating their implicit apostasy (50) and their anti-natural religion. They were declaring their independence from God’s Truth by their rejection of God’s reality, and of the Order which He implanted in Nature (60–63).

Madiran concludes his Part I by saying that whereas Thomism corresponds to the human experience of all times and all places (66), Kantism has cut the French bishops mentally adrift, like the modern age they so seek to please (67).

Kyrie eleison.

Hoist Ladder – II

Hoist Ladder – II posted in Eleison Comments on May 9, 2020

Last week these “Comments” started out from words of Archbishop Lefebvre in 1990 on the mindset of the officials at the top of the Conciliar Church in Rome, and they finished with his strong conclusion –

All we can do is pull up the ladder (i.e. cut all contact) . There is nothing we can do with these people, because we have nothing in common with them.

Such words may seem to be lacking either in charity, or at least in the respect due to the princes of the Church of Our Lord, but in fact they are neither uncharitable nor disrespectful, because the very purpose of Our Lord’s Church is 1/ the Faith on which 2/ must be based charity and 3/ respect for the officials who are meant to be caring for that Church.

1/ “Without faith it is impossible to please God. For whoever would draw near to God must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who seek Him.” (Hebrews XI, 6). (Atheists, if you wish you could believe in God, notice immediately that “He rewards those who seek Him,” and if you do persevere in seeking Him, your reward will most likely be that you will find Him, as many quotations in Scripture attest, but that is a story for another time.) All spiritual souls, by which alone human beings live, come from God in accordance with His wish that they use their brief lives to choose to return to Him for eternal bliss in His heaven. However, while that choice is encouraged by all the goodness in creation, it is discouraged by the soul’s three great enemies, the world, the flesh and the Devil, and by all the evil that God chooses to allow in his creation, so that there is a genuine choice to be made, requiring virtue, otherwise I will incline away from God towards the evil.

Now such is the display of goodness in God’s creation that those who see it and still do not believe in God are called by St Paul “inexcusable” (Romans, I, 20). Nevertheless God Himself normally remains invisible (e.g. Col. I, 15), so that the prime virtue needed to begin to make one’s way towards Him is the virtue of faith, by which I choose to make the jump, from what I see with my eyes to what or Who I must know with my mind is behind what I see with my eyes. Hence the Council of Trent (VI, 6) calls faith “the foundation of salvation,” and the Catholic Church by its Creeds simply spells out what I need to believe in order to have faith in the truth, and not falsehoods, about God.

2/ Now there cannot be a desire in a human will which is not preceded by some thought in the same person’s mind. A desire without object is a non-desire. That object is presented to a human will by a mind.

Now charity is a kind of desire seated in the will, so it presupposes a thought in the mind. And if the charity is to be truly supernatural and not just humanist or sentimental, it presupposes a supernatural object in the mind, and that is the supernatural object which is believed in by faith. Therefore true charity presupposes true faith, and without true supernatural faith there cannot be true charity. It follows that if today’s Roman officials have a faith at least seriously contaminated by Vatican II, as is certainly the case, then people wishing to keep the true Faith must be seriously warned to stay away from such officials lest their own faith be also contaminated. In other words they must be told to “pull up the ladder.”

3/ And while to those “seated on the chair of Moses” (Mt. XXIII, 2) is due all respect due to the chair of Moses, all the more to the See of Rome, and while to high Church officials is due all charity towards souls with a tremendous responsibility at their Particular Judgment, nevertheless the Catholic faith comes first, so that neither the respect nor the charity can include my exposing my own soul or anyone else’s to contamination of our faith by imprudent contacts risking just such contamination. the Conciliarists in 2020 are still crusaders for the idolatry of man peddled by their wretched Council. Archbishop Lefebvre was right – pull up the ladder. Catholics and Conciliarists are in a war of religions, a war to the death.

Kyrie eleison.

Soul Attacked

Soul Attacked posted in Eleison Comments on September 22, 2018

Archbishop Viganò’s revelations of grave moral corruption among a number of the Church’s highest officials, not excluding Pope Francis himself, can be a severe trial for the faith of Catholics who have trusted the official churchmen for the last 50 years because they have not seen – or have not wanted to see – any essential problem in the Second Vatican Council (1962–1965). Three weeks ago these “Comments” quoted words of a Catholic brought to virtual despair, even before the publication of Viganò’s letter, by the Attorney General of the State of Pennsylvania revealing similar Newchurch scandals in that State. The threat now being real of an avalanche of such scandals, let these “Comments” this week show how the Devil is turning his heavy artillery on another such Catholic to make him lose his faith. Here are the Devil’s shells, as related by this soul, with brief answers offered by these “Comments,” in the hope of fortifying other souls whose faith will be shaken in the foreseeable future:—

* In my home city I attended a Newmass celebrated for Sisters by a local auxiliary bishop. His sermon on the Sacred Heart was doctrinally beyond reproach and highly edifying. Yet a friend of mine with his own eyes once saw the same bishop kissing a seminarian! This bishop sets an agonising problem for me – how can he believe in the Sacred Heart on whose love he preaches so well?

He is a modernist, like easily most churchmen in the Church “renewed” by Vatican II, or, as we can call it, the “Newchurch.” Now modernism means adapting the Catholic Church to the anti-Catholic modern world, and this it does by a process of making objective reality depend on subjective feeling. But the process of subjectivising reality can take time, so that a churchman falling for modernism need not immediately lose the objective Catholic faith, even if it is already subjectively undermined in his soul.

It can be God alone who knows exactly when such a churchman loses the faith. So if this bishop believes in Vatican II, he is certainly on his way to losing the faith, far enough to let himself commit grave sin against the Sixth Commandment, but not yet far enough to have lost all notion of the Sacred Heart.

* But in order to destroy Catholic Truth as successfully as the Roman impostors are now doing, they must have known it. If they knew it, they must have known its force. If they knew its force, how can they have ceased to believe in it, unless it is a fairy-tale, untrue like all other religions, with the Catholic Church being in no way superior, and with man having no access to the Truth of God?

To believe the Catholic Faith a man’s mind must accept many supernatural truths which are not unreasonable but which are beyond his mind’s natural reach. To accept and to submit to these truths his mind must be pushed by his will. If his will stops pushing, or pushes in a contrary direction, he can lose the faith. Now modernism is proud, because in the Newchurch man takes the place of God. Therefore the Roman impostors, as you rightly call them, may have been Freemasons or Communist infiltrators from the start, or they may have believed to begin with, like Judas Iscariot, but the pride of taking God’s place and of remaking His Church overcame their wills, and their minds lost the faith. God knows.

* Then might we not be deceived, fighting an endless war for a fragile promise of Heaven, unable to know anything about God? Would we not be better off if God did not exist? Amid today’s chaos, I cannot help thinking that the Church is a purely human affair, so that there are times when I cannot help envying the people who lead happy lives without God.

Dear friend, a happy life without God is an illusion, however “happy” godless people pretend to be. We human beings are all from God, our souls are all directly created by God for us to go to God, body and soul. Today’s world and Church are in chaos precisely because they are trying to live without Him.

* It would appear that we are predestined to Heaven or Hell, and free-will cannot do much about it.

“The poison is in the tail,” said the Latins. This heavyweight conclusion of yours, a horrible heresy, is the proof that the devil is throwing everything at you to shake your faith. Pray the Rosary to obtain the help of the Mother of God. I send you my blessing.

Kyrie eleison.

Viganò Letter

Viganò Letter posted in Eleison Comments on September 15, 2018

A reader wrote in with a few questions on the 11-page letter of the former Apostolic Nuncio to the United States, Archbishop Viganò, which declared with a wealth of details, and quoting names, that there is immense moral corruption rotting the Catholic clergy in the USA, and that the responsibility for the crimes involved reaches to the very top of the Church. At the time of writing these “Comments,” the scandal caused by the letter is immense, and it is having widespread repercussions. Nobody can tell right now what the ultimate fallout will be. Here are the reader’s four questions with brief answers –

1 What is to be thought of the Viganò letter? Is it as serious as it looks?

Yes, because Archbishop Viganò gives all indications of being an honest man. In 2011 he was exiled from Rome and sent to the USA because he was making a successful attempt to clean up Vatican finances. At the time of writing he is in hiding because he is in fear for his life. He has serious enemies.

2 Will the letter be a bombshell in the Church, or a mere fire-cracker, with no lasting consequences?

Time must tell. Certainly the corruption high in the Church is matched by the corruption high among the powers-that-be in the world, politicians, bankers, media and so on. Satan rules, because satanists are linked with one another in all domains, and they are not going to allow one mere Archbishop to upset their apple-cart, if they can help it. In fact it is God who holds the whip-hand. Are people turning back to Him, or not? If not, He will allow the servants of Satan to continue whipping Church and world into the New World Order. If they are turning back to Him, we will have before long the Consecration of Russia.

3 Will the scandal make Menzingen think again about seeking recognition from the Pope and Rome?

It certainly should do so, but I fear it may not. For many years now, Society headquarters in Menzingen have been in the clouds, and liberals do not change their doctrine. For liberals, it is reality that is in the wrong. At all costs official recognition for the Society must be obtained from Rome, and so Pope Francis must still be treated as a friend. Maybe Menzingen can admit that they have been wrong for 20 years, but it will not be easy for them to change course. Archbishop Lefebvre on the contrary decided 30 years ago to let the Conciliar Popes go their way. He would not have been at all surprised by the Viganò letter.

4 What made the Archbishop so clear-sighted?

Doctrine. Scratch many a materialistic Westerner of today and you find an heir of Protestantism who tends to strain out a gnat and swallow a camel (Mt. XXIII, 24), meaning that he is more severe on sins of the flesh than on sins of the spirit, such as doctrinal error, or heresy. Now sins of the flesh are serious enough to contribute to the eternal damnation of a huge number of the souls that fall into Hell – so said Our Lady to the children of Fatima. But it is heresy which opens the way to these sins. See Romans I, 21 to 31. Breaking the First Commandment leads to impurity in general (21–24), to homosexuality in particular (26–27), and to all kinds of other sins in general (28–32). In other words it is the First Commandment which is the first, and not the Sixth.

Thus the real scandal being denounced by Archbishop Viganò is implicit rather than explicit. It is less the perverse sins of the flesh running riot in high-up churchmen than the official idolatry committed by Vatican II in its documents, which did more than anything else to take off the Catholic brakes on immorality. If no State should coerce doctrinally false religions in public ( Dignitatis Humanae), why should I have to observe Catholic morals which put special limits on my liberty? If Hell is a mere “doctrine” of the Church, why should it stop me from sinning how I like? Vatican II ( Nostra Aetate, Unitatis Redintegratio) declared that several religions beside Catholicism have their points. Was this not the Catholic Church itself teaching me that I do not really need to be Catholic?

Kyrie eleison.

Faith Crucial – I

Faith Crucial – I posted in Eleison Comments on October 7, 2017

The great lesson taught by Archbishop Lefebvre (1905–1991) to Catholics who had ears to hear was that the Faith is higher than obedience. The sad lesson we have learned since then is that obedience keeps on being rated higher than the Faith. These “Comments,” driven continually by today’s confusion to get back to basics, have often attempted to explain why the Faith must come first. One more attempt from a slightly different angle will not be one too many.

Every single human being alive on earth – and not just the Catholics! – has an immortal soul without which he would not be alive. This soul was not mass-produced but was created individually by God, out of nothing, for it to be happy with Him in Heaven for ever. It is the most important part of human nature, so it belongs to the natural order and is not by itself supernatural, but it will get to God’s supernatural Heaven if it makes the right use of its natural faculty of free-will to co-operate with God’s supernatural grace. His grace will not be lacking, in whatever form God chooses to offer it, because God wants every soul to get to Heaven (I Tim. II, 4). The question then becomes, what human co-operation is needed – and not just from Catholics – to get to Heaven?

Faith is undoubtedly the basis of that co-operation. The Council of Trent calls faith “the beginning of salvation,” and God’s own Word says that “Without faith it is impossible to please God” (Heb. XI, 6). Many times in the Gospels when Our Lord works a miracle, he says that it is the reward of the “faith” of those concerned, for example Mt. XV, 28 (cure of the Canaanite woman), Mk.X, 52 (sight for a blind man), Lk.VII, 50 (conversion of Mary Magdalene), and so on. In what does this “faith” consist, and why is it so precious to God, and therefore to souls?

Let us immediately distinguish two realities, different but connected: the subjective quality of faith in the soul, by which someone supernaturally believes, and the objective body of supernatural realities, objects of the Catholic Faith, in which a Catholic believes. To distinguish them, we might spell the first with a small “f” and the second with a capital “F.” That they are distinct is obvious: a man can lose his (subjective) faith without the least change taking place in the (objective) Faith.

Two things then become clear. Firstly, the faith which saves a soul is that subjective quality of the person which Our Lord so praises and rewards in the Gospels. He is not praising or rewarding an objective body of truths. On the other hand, secondly, the subjective quality of faith is determined or specified by the objective Faith. I am not saved, I do not deserve to be praised or rewarded, by my believing in any silly nonsense. The Canaanite woman did not believe in any silliness, she certainly believed in the goodness and some divine power of Our Lord. What she believed in was both supernatural, or above the merely natural powers of her mind to grasp, and true. And most likely, as soon as the Apostles began to establish soon after Our Lord’s ascension to Heaven the basic truths that a follower of Our Lord must believe in, she was happy to have her subjective faith focused and specified or determined by the then emerging objective Faith.

In other words the objective Faith focuses that subjective faith without which no soul is saved. Therefore churchmen who tamper with the objective Faith are placing in peril the eternal salvation of souls. If then subjective faith is priceless, so is the objective Faith. It must come first.

Kyrie eleison.

Resurrection Argued

Resurrection Argued posted in Eleison Comments on April 15, 2017

On the eve of Easter Day, let us remind ourselves of how reasonable it is to believe in such an extraordinary occurrence as a human being bursting out of the grave from behind a stone normally heavy enough to stop him from even dreaming of doing any such thing. Firstly, the theological “How” of the Resurrection, and then the historical “Whether” it took place.

For Catholics who by the gift of supernatural faith believe that at the Incarnation the second divine Person of the Holy Trinity, in full possession of the complete divine Nature, united to Himself a complete human nature, making two natures in one divine Person, it is not difficult to understand how the Resurrection took place. On the Cross, the divine Person truly died, not in His immortal divine Nature, but in his human nature, capable of dying like any other mortal man by the separation of his human soul from his human body. However, while these two in Jesus Christ could be separated from one another, neither was separated from the divine Person, which is why Catholics recite in their Creed that He (body and soul) “suffered and died,” and that He (body) “was buried” and that He (soul) “descended into Hell (not the Hell of the damned, but the Limbo of good souls dead and waiting for Christ’s redeeming death to open for them the gates of Heaven closed by Adam and Eve). Both human body and human soul of Christ remaining each of them united to the divine Person, it may not have been easy for that Person to die the atrocious death on the Cross, but it was easy for His human soul to reunite with His human body in the sepulchre so that His human nature came back to life. And no stone on earth could have been heavy enough to stop Him from flying immediately to His Mother to console her.

But must a soul then have the supernatural gift of the faith to accept the reality of the Resurrection? Not necessarily. If an unbelieving but upright mind will consider the merely natural arguments taken from natural psychology and human history, he can easily conclude that only some event at least as sensational as the Resurrection can explain the facts as we know them (and let nobody say that the Resurrection is so thweet and thticky and nithe that nobody needth argumentth! Men need arguments! God did not put our heads on the top for nothing!).

Firstly, human psychology arguing from the Apostles. For three years they have learned to believe, trust in and love the divine Master. Then he is executed in public like a common criminal, after they all ran away in the Garden of Gethsemane. And after the Passion they are totally disheartened (cf. Jn. XX, 19). absolutely normal in the circumstances. Yet within 50 days here they are back in Jerusalem, confronting the Jews head on and converting them to believe in Jesus Christ, thousands at a time (cf. Acts II, 41; IV, 4). And within another 300 years these Apostles and their successors will have converted the Roman Empire itself. Such are the facts of history. What can have happened, less than something as sensational as the Resurrection, to explain such a psychological transformation of whipped dogs (so to speak) into world-conquerors?

Secondly, human history, arguing from the Jews. They hated Christ, and killed Him, as they have striven to destroy His Church ever since. Yet within 50 days here are his followers, commanding them to be baptised in the name of Jesus Christ, using the Resurrection as their main argument. Would not the best way to stop them in their tracks have been to produce Christ’s dead corpse? And can we doubt that, then as now, they had all money, police and power at their disposal to find any corpse at all, if only it was still there to be found? But Christianity, instead of being stopped, took off. The only explanation can be that there was no corpse to be found. The Resurrection is true. One need not even have supernatural faith to accept it. So Peter was right – Acts II, 38 – “Do penance, and be baptised in the name of Jesus Christ.”

Kyrie eleison.