Thursday, September 08, 2022

The Queen Is Dead, God Save the New King


Queen Elizabeth II has died, the longest-reigning monarch in world history.  One has to be almost as old as she was (96) to remember back behind her reign.  Charles, up to now the longest-serving Prince of Wales in British history, is now King, automatically, by operation of law.

There can surely be no one, at least in the secular world, who compares to Queen Elizabeth II in dutifulness.  Prime ministers and cabinet officials came and went, yet seven full decades, and into an eighth, she stuck to her post; and for all the years before that, when Edward VIII abdicated, and it became clear that she would rule after her father.  Despite all the talk about her abdicating due to her great age, she never did, even though she delegated many of her duties to others.

But, I have often thought, how hard it must have been for her to see what was being done to her people,  especially in the last couple of years, without her being able to do anything about it.  When Teddy Roosevelt asked Emperor Franz Josef of Austria-Hungary what his job was as emperor, Franz Josef replied: my job is to protect my people from their politicians.  But the British people have had no one to protect them from their politicians, thanks to the apostasy of Henry VIII, that eventually reduced the monarchy to a figurehead and transferred all the sovereign's power to oligarchs.  

May God have mercy on the soul of Elizabeth II, and on her poor subjects, upon whom the oligarchs who rule over them have declared war.  May God grant to England soon the grace of conversion back to the Faith of her fathers, that she ought never to have abandoned.

Sunday, July 17, 2022

August 1st: Masses Solicited for Blase Cardinal Cupich

Today Fr. Z asks for a hard thing in the wake of Blase Cardinal Cupich's brutal, hateful suppression of the Institute of Christ the King within his archdiocese: that Masses be offered on August 1st for his intention.  He also asks writers and bloggers to pick up this request.

Why is this so hard?  Because, on account of his having been a protégé of ex-Cardinal McCarrick, and still more on account of his appalling cruelty and towering hypocrisy, Cardinal Cupich has made himself one of the most loathsome and repulsive figures in the Church's hierarchy in our lifetime.  One would wish to see some dreadful, humiliating retribution visited upon him in exchange for the misery he has visited upon his subjects and the sacrileges, such as the infamous laser light Christmas Mass and the Bubble Mass, that he has permitted within his precincts.  

But: Christ died for him too, and desires not the death of sinners, but that they should live.  To this we all owe the fact that, up to now, we ourselves have not been struck by lightning and swallowed up by the earth.  

So, if there are any priests amongst my tiny readership, please offer your Mass on August 1st for the intention of Cardinal Cupich, in view of the fact that his conversion would be God's preferred method of putting a stop to his predations.  I myself will offer my daily Rosary for him on that day.

Friday, June 24, 2022

We Have Lived to See a World after Roe v. Wade.

Today, the feast of the Sacred Heart, and the Nativity of John the Baptist, who recognized from his mother's womb the unborn Savior, we have lived to see a world after Roe v. Wade.  The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in Dobbs v. Jackson that the U.S. Constitution does not confer a right to abortion, and explicitly struck down Roe and Casey v. Planned Parenthood.  Abortion, then, has been divested of its hitherto impenetrable armor as an allegedly constitutionally guaranteed right.

Legacy media outlets are already hyperventilating about the vulnerability, in light of Dobbs, of other purported rights invented by the Supreme Court over the last 60 years -- and not without good reason.  In his concurring opinion in Dobbs, Justice Thomas states that the high court needs to reconsider all its substantive due process precedents, including Griswold v. Connecticut (striking down laws against contraceptives), Lawrence v. Texas (striking down laws against certain private, consensual sex acts) and Obergefell v. Hodges (creating a "right" to same-sex marriage).  There can be no doubt that the same reasoning that formed the basis for striking down Roe also applies to these other cases.  Justice Thomas argues that the substantive due process doctrine has been the principle engine of what he calls "the Court's constitutionally unmoored policy judgments," the nullification of state laws that do not conform to those policy judgments, and immeasurable human suffering -- in this case, in the form of more than 63,000,000 abortions.  "Accordingly, " he says, "we should eliminate it from our jurisprudence at the earliest opportunity."  Dobbs certainly renders the spindly edifice of court-manufactured "rights" even more rickety and precarious.  

Amid the celebration of this most necessary legal victory for the cause of life, there are two things we need to not lose sight of.  The first is that, as Justice Kavanaugh notes in his concurring opinion, Dobbs does not make abortion illegal in the United States.  What it does do is restore the regulation of abortion to the states.  The hottest battleground in the war on abortion has now shrunk to those states, like California and New York, that are still governed by ghouls who are determined to keep the abortion industry going.  Other states have criminal abortion statutes whose effectiveness Dobbs has now triggered.  Idaho, for example, has a criminal abortion statute that will take effect in 30 days.  With the usual exceptions, which apply to physicians, the statute makes it a felony to perform or attempt to perform an abortion.  The statute explicitly excludes from its ambit pregnant women undergoing abortions.

The second thing we need to not lose sight of is that the partisans of abortion are not going to let it go gentle into that good night.  These are the people who did not scruple to leak the entire draft of the decision in an obvious attempt to flip the high court, and who publicly called for harassment and violence against members of the court.  Do not forget the huge industry, not only in performing abortions but also in trafficking in the body parts and cell lines stolen from aborted babies.  Besides which, do not forget the occult dimensions of abortion.  Abortion is nothing other than the modern-day iteration of the cult of Moloch.  All laws that purport to legalize abortion merely provide a legal cover for human sacrifice.  We should expect to see attempts to subvert or somehow end-run or abrogate this ruling.  We should also expect to see hysterical demonstrations, violent protests, and especially more violent attacks on Catholics and their churches over this ruling.  

In my opinion, today's ruling is not decisive, but does mark a change in the prevailing wind.  We may (and probably will) still be in for rough times, but there is a change in the atmosphere.  Is there the smallest possibility that this is a fruit of the consecration of Russia on March 25th?  

What we really need, to send abortion back to the abyss from whence it came, is for abortion to become unthinkable.  That is going to depend upon a change of minds and hearts.  The battle, then, is only beginning.  But Dobbs is a necessary and crucial victory, and worth a public singing of the Te Deum at the very least.

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Atomization

 

Have you noticed how much society, and especially the policies of governance in both Church and State, have tended to the atomization and isolation of persons?  Is it really all a coincidence?

- Discouraging extended families from living together

- Sticking old people into nursing homes

- Encouraging people to work long hours, to the detriment of health, family and social life

- Making it impossible to support a family on one salary, again, to the detriment of health, family and social life

- Flooding towns and cities with more newcomers than they can comfortably handle, destroying the social cohesion and the character of these communities 

- Pricing people out of the housing market, so that they can no longer afford to live where they work

- Implementing policies that lead to a skyrocketing price of fuel, now that millions are forced to commute

- Taxing people to death, so that they become wage slaves

- Making usury the cornerstone of the economic system, thus further enslaving the populace

- Proliferating social media, so that more and more people are content with virtual contact rather than actual contact

- Making it ever easier to order all goods online, rather than having to go out and get them

- Demonizing Catholics who are devoted to traditional Catholicism

- Deliberately making the Mass of tradition so scarce that people have to travel long distances, even hundreds of miles, to find it

These things all drive wedges between people.  Family relationships, friendships, parish life, and civic activities flourish best when everyone lives in one neighborhood and are able to maintain a standard of living that is fitting to their state in life.  It's very difficult to make these things work when everyone has to work longer for less money, and to spend huge chunks of their time traveling; and when traveling becomes expensive as well as time-consuming, people start cutting back.  This usually means, in our Puritan society, eliminating first the  social and recreational activities that otherwise would foster camaraderie and save people from a one-dimensional life centered on work.  It is another form of slavery.

With The Bug, of course, this all became more obvious, plus, our already strained lives were strained even further.  Now we had:

- Healthy people forbidden to leave their homes

- People forbidden to exercise their constitutionally-guaranteed right to assemble

- The creation of an atmosphere of fear and suspicion

- People urged to view each other as vectors of contagion

- People urged to go around with their noses and mouths covered, when God intended our faces to be visible and our noses and mouths to be exposed to the open air

- Increasingly intrusive interference with people's daily lives

- Divisions between those fearful of catching disease and those who were not fearful

- Divisions between those willing to abide by the mandates, and those who saw them as completely unreasonable and ineffective

- Divisions between the jabbed and the unjabbed

- Hospitals and nursing homes forbidding or severely limiting visitors, thereby cutting patients and residents off from their true advocates with the health care system

- The distrust of the medical profession resulting from its ruthless, one-size-fits-all implementation of restrictions and protocols

- Obsession with scientism and abandonment of the supernatural

- The shutting out of people from their own churches and the cutting off of them from the Sacraments

It should be obvious, after the globally coordinated response to The Bug, that we have fallen into the hands of a worldwide, interlocking directorate of parasitic wickedness, for the benefit of which we are kept fearful and isolated.  Fear and isolation certainly do not serve the common good.  They do, however, make it easy for us to be bullied into acting against our own best interests, and even to consenting to participate in great evils, such as aiding and abetting the oppression of our fellow men who are not willing to be bullied.  

Ultimately, in back of it all, is a dark power that seeks to make us lose our souls by rebelling against God and turning on our fellow man.  That is why the churches were shut down, and we were cut off from Mass and the Sacraments, which are necessary to keep us in the life of grace.  It also has to be why many of the dark machinations are carried out in plain sight.  To give full consent of our will to evil, we have to recognize it as evil and resolve to do it anyway.  We can make all the excuses we want for it, and even come up with some really good ones; but really, in the end, deep down, we cannot fool ourselves.

Or God.

Monday, June 20, 2022

The Abdication of Francis: Wishful Thinking

 

Rumors are picking up that Pope Francis is about to abdicate.  So many people are so tired of Pope Francis and his sledgehammer style of governance that they seem quite ready to believe it, and are speculating on when this event nobody knows will happen is to take place.  Pope Francis himself has hinted in the past that he has not ruled out the possibility of following the example of his immediate predecessor and stepping down.  

Me?  As much as I look for the light at the end of the dark tunnel of this pontificate, I don't buy it, and I don't hope for Francis to abdicate.

Why don't I hope for Francis to abdicate?  Number one, I don't think papal abdications are, on balance, a good thing for the Church.  Up to now, they have been extremely rare, and rare they should remain.  The latest abdication, after all, brought us -- Francis.  Number two, the abdication of this Pope, who has been swelling the college of cardinals far beyond its normal size in order to pack it with his cohorts, would be an ominous sign: a sign that the fix is in (humanly speaking) for Francis 2.0.  

But in any case, I don't see it happening.  It has indeed been terrifying to see a man in his mid-eighties and in obviously poor health double and treble down on effectively excommunicating the whole Church.  But he appears determined to carry on.  From whence could he continue his campaign of smashing up everything recognizably Catholic, if not from his present position?  His prestige would fall to zero if he stepped down.  No, I think the papacy will have to be pried from Francis' cold, dead fingers.  

Could I be wrong?  Sure.  My crystal ball is at the cleaner's.  But I don't think I am wrong.  It is going to be up to God to deliver us from the hirelings into whose hands we have fallen.  

Friday, June 10, 2022

Confirm Thy Brethren

Pope Francis never stops trolling us.  From bringing in syncretism and pagan worship to dropping 16-ton weights on the Mass of tradition to elevating wicked bishops to the college of cardinals to describing the Holy Spirit as "the author of division, ruckus and a certain disorder," the present sovereign pontiff is the scourge that leaves no square inch of our flesh unbloodied.  So much of what he does and says is the exact opposite of what a Pope should do and say.  He quite fails to confirm the brethren.

Or does he?  

I think 2020 kicked off a period of exceptional undeception.  The evils of the modern world have always been visible; but we who have never known anything else have failed, in whole or in part, to recognize them for what they are.  2020 began to prove to us how naked and defenseless we really are in both Church and State before the forces of malignity in the world.  Once a cadre of unelected bureaucrats and oligarchs began to interfere with our everyday lives, we could see how useless our "democratic" systems of government are in the face of true threats to our "constitutionally guaranteed" freedoms.  With the closure of churches and deprivation of the Sacraments, we have seen that the Church of the New Advent, Updated and Streamlined for the sake of Modern Man, has got nothing for us in a true crisis.  God, in His mercy, evidently wills that this present generation not die in its errors.

I submit that His most powerful instrument is Pope Francis.  What greater proof could there be than this catastrophic pontificate that the Barque of Peter is in dire need of a course correction?  Francis is the ultimate undeceiver.  He is not a one-off.  He is a typical boomer cleric: arrogant, brutal, filled with hatred and contempt for tradition and those who love it.  There are loads of priests and bishops just like him, and so it was inevitable that one such would make it onto the Throne of Peter.  The full horror of the project launched into the open at the Second Vatican Council was never going to really make itself fully known and felt by us until we got such a Pope.   

Pope Benedict XVI, though handicapped by the desire to compromise with the Big Ideas of the postconciliar church (as it calls itself), nevertheless tried, gently, to turn the ship around.  But, coarse as we are, gentleness did not suffice, so God permitted the advent of a destroyer.  By the trials that he has inflicted on us, Pope Francis actually removes all reasonable doubt as to the following:

- "Aggiornamento" is really surrender to the world, the flesh and the devil.

- The novelties of the Council, such as religious liberty, ecumenism and collegiality, constitute a colossal betrayal and led directly to abominations like Assisi, Pachamama and Abu Dhabi (with their proponents citing to the Council), as well as to the paralysis of prelates in the face of such evils.

- The Mass of Paul VI is the expression of something that bears the name of Catholicism but that is in opposition to what came before it.

- The Mass of Paul VI performs, and is performed, precisely as intended.

- By the entirely unworthy men this Pope promotes, we can see that there is no dichotomy between someone's private life and his public life.  Sexual deviancy leads inevitably to deviancy in everything.

In short, all the evils the traditionalists in the '60s and '70s predicted -- for which they were laughed to scorn -- have come to pass.  Pope Francis leaves us no room to fudge or evade or reinterpret this fact into something positive.  

In a strange and backhanded sort of way, and whether he intends it or not, Pope Francis is confirming the brethren.  He is confirming them in the inescapable fact that they have gone terribly wrong, and that they need to retrace their steps and get back on the right road.

Pope Francis acts as someone who loves to sow confusion.  But, in light of all the foregoing, how confused are we really?

Wednesday, June 01, 2022

Spend the Month of June Making Acts of Reparation to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Pray the Rosary every day (which we should all be doing anyway).  Recite the Litany of the Sacred Heart every day during the month of June.  Offer up trials and tribulations, however small, in reparation for the outrages committed against the Sacred Heart during the month that is especially dedicated to Its honor.  Go to confession.  Attend Mass and receive Holy Communion on First Friday.  If you've never made the Nine First Fridays, now would be a good time to start.  If you have made them, it couldn't hurt to make them again.

Lord, have mercy on us.

Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us.  Christ, hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us.

God, the Father of heaven, have mercy on us.
God, the Son, Redeemer of the world, have mercy on us.
God, the Holy Ghost, have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, one God, have mercy on us.

Heart of Jesus, Son of the Eternal Father, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, formed by the Holy Ghost in the womb of the Virgin Mother, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, united substantially with the Word of God, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, of infinite majesty, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, sacred temple of God, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, tabernacle of the Most High, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, house of God and gate of heaven, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, burning furnace of charity, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, abode of justice and love, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, full of goodness and love, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, abyss of all virtues, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, most worthy of all praise, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, King and center of all hearts, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, in Whom are all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, in Whom dwells all the fullness of Divinity, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, in Whom the Father is well pleased, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, of Whose fullness we have all received, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, desire of the everlasting hills, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, patient and rich in mercy, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, enriching all who invoke Thee, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, fount of life and holiness, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, propitiation for our sins, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, loaded down with opprobrium, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, bruised for our offenses, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, made obedient unto death, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, pierced with a lance, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, source of all consolation, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, our life and resurrection, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, our peace and reconciliation, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, victim for our sins, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, salvation of those who trust in Thee, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, hope of those who die in Thee, have mercy on us.
Heart of Jesus, delight of all Saints, have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world, spare us, O Lord!
Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world, graciously hear us, O Lord!
Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.

V. Jesus, meek and humble of Heart.
R. Make our hearts like unto Thine.

Let us pray:
Almighty and everlasting God, look upon the Heart of Thy most-beloved Son, and upon the praises and satisfaction which which He offers Thee in the name of sinners; and to those who implore Thy mercy, in Thy great goodness, grant forgiveness in the Name of the same Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee forever and ever.
R. Amen.

Sunday, May 15, 2022

"Synodality"

We are advised that the "Synodal Way" is the New Way of Doing Church.  It means the Church listening to The People for a Change, instead of ordering them around.  The People need to feel like it's Safe to Say Exactly What They Believe.

Okay.  Pursuant to Synodality, I trust the hierarchy will now listen to me, accept me for what I am, and honor my legitimate aspirations.  So, here goes.

Ahem.

I want all churches to be beautiful and worthy places of worship, and not look like a cross between Hitler's bunker and a ski lodge.  I want the clear and unambiguous teaching of the authentic Catholic faith to children, in the same sense and the same explanation as it has always been passed down.  I want all the pervs and grifters cleaned out of the hierarchy.  I want the human element of the Church to stop lending its prestige to social engineering projects conducted by worldly powers, and start defending the flock against tyranny.  I want unrestricted and unconditional access to the approved and received rites of the Mass and the Sacraments as they existed before the upheavals of the 1960s, and I want to have it right in my own neighborhood, instead of having to make a 100-mile round trip every week to get them.  Those are the things I want.

Yeah.  

I'm sure the Hierarchy of the New Advent will get right on that.  

We all remember how, 40 or 50 years ago, they sprang into action to effectuate the wishes of the Catholics who refused to attend the Novus Ordo, but flocked to Archbishop Lefebvre, to hear his Masses and have him administer the Sacrament of Confirmation to their children.  We have seen them continue in the same vein now, moving to crush the traditional Mass, the traditional Sacraments and traditional religious congregations, taking timely action in an increasingly evil world against this sector of the Church where the real growth is happening.

Thank God we got rid of that mean, nasty, hide-bound, anathematizing Church of No.  Thank God the Church is finally listening to me.

Saturday, May 07, 2022

An Apocalyptic Leak

 

"Apocalyptic," as in, "unveiling," as in, the continuation of the exposure of people's and society's true colors that took off in earnest in 2020.  This image of a vandalized Catholic church in Denver (CBS Denver, YouTube screenshot) is becoming iconic and emblematic of the new front that has opened in the culture war with the leak of Justice Alito's draft opinion overturning Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey.

Now that the dust is settling from the shock of this unprecedented breach of Supreme Court protocols, it seems plain that the purpose of the leak is to flip some justices, and to disrupt our already fragile civic order.  Some outfit called "Ruth Sent Us" is calling for the nationwide invasion of Catholic Masses on Mother's Day to "protest" the apparently immanent overturning of two of the most evil decisions ever to emanate from the Supreme Court.  "Ruth" refers to Ruth Bader Ginsberg, the late and very pro-abortion Supreme Court justice who, among other things, dissented from Gonzales v. Carhart, 550 U.S. 124 (2007), which upheld the Partial Birth Abortion Ban act of 2003.

Those who strive to lead normal, sane lives are probably unaware of how much Ruth Bader Ginsberg is idolized by women in the legal profession, which has long been co-opted by the left.  There is all kinds of RBG trash out there, from wall art to coffee mugs to T-shirts to bobble-head dolls, and it litters the offices of many women lawyers.  It is depressing to see how many women have made a hero out of this pathetic degenerate who believed that the "right" to execute the unborn is a necessary guarantee of women's rightful place in society.  She is a fitting mascot for pro-abortion hooligans and for those who engineered this appalling subversion of the high court's deliberations.  No one who swears an oath to uphold the law, as lawyers do, should want such bedfellows.  

And now that Roe and Casey appear to be on the chopping block, more people feel called upon to come out openly in favor of abortion.  This includes persons calling themselves Catholics.  If you are Catholic, and you support abortion, you number yourself among the enemies of the Church and should stop holding yourself out as Catholic.  At least we can be thankful that you now identify yourself for what you are, and no longer hide behind the Catholic name.

The lawlessness that passes for governance in our time also continues to be unveiled.  The purported legalization of abortion is contrary to natural and divine law and is therefore itself lawless; but now, the lawlessness need not keep the cover of law as before.  The leaker of the draft opinion had to be someone in a position of trust.  We will probably never know, this side of the General Judgment, who it was, unless someone who is prepared to cast away all is willing to blow the whistle.  Anyone who is prosecuted for the leak will probably be a patsy.  Whoever it is, we can now see that, any time the high court is inclined to make a course correction on an issue that has torn the country apart for decades, thuggery is always available to "correct" the correction.

Finally, there are those who distinguish themselves by silence when they ought to speak.  The rot in the Catholic hierarchy was already well-established by the time Paul VI issued Humanae vitae in 1968, and discovered that the opposition to his upholding of Church teaching was pre-planned and well coordinated.  A faithful Catholic hierarchy and laity could have stopped the movement that led to Roe v. Wade dead in its tracks.  Today a hierarchy beholden to secular powers and preoccupied with irrelevancies like "synodality" comes out with a weak-tea response to the Supreme Court leak while their flocks are threatened with violence in their own churches.  Once again, the Church of the New Advent proves it has got nothing for us in a time of crisis.

So, the apocalyptic drama that began in 2019 with the worship of idols in St. Peter's Basilica -- heralded, perhaps, by the fire at Notre Dame in April of that year -- continues.  It is not that things were better before -- they really weren't -- it's just that now we are no longer able to kid ourselves about who we really are and where we really are.  All poisons that lurked in the mud are hatching out.

Otherwise, we might never see the need to repent.

Sunday, April 17, 2022

Desolate No More

 

The vigil is over, Easter has arrived, the altar is ready for Mass, and the tabernacle is ready to receive the Eucharistic Lord.

Saturday, April 16, 2022

The Desolation of the Church


The desolation of the stripped altar strikes me forcefully this year.  This is exactly where the Church is at right now.  The Holy Thursday stripping of the altar is surely prophetic, since eventually we reached a point where altars would come pre-stripped and pre-desolated, to match the stripped and desolated new rites of Mass and the Sacraments that were to be foisted on us.

(photograph from Wikimedia Commons by Martin Geisler)
The deliberate desolating of Catholic churches, which started even before Vatican II and the Novus Ordo Missae, must in turn be prophetic of an even greater desolation that we are now living in: the desolation of true shepherds in the Church, the suspension of the magisterium, and the appalling spectacle of so many in the hierarchy, all the way to the very top, filling their valuable time with utter irrelevancies, and even openly and actively working for the other side.  Even on the morrow of the consecration of Russia, this is going on very notoriously in Germany, where bishops appear to have formally rejected the Church's doctrines on sexual morality.  

Does this prove that the collegial consecration of Russia did not in fact take place?  I don't know.  I am on record rejecting the theory that Francis Bergoglio is not the true Pope, and saying that I think the consecration has now been performed as asked, even with its accretions of fol-de-rol, but I have also never ruled out the possibility that I am wrong.  Some critics of the Francis consecration cite to Sr. Lucia's account of our Lord's explanation that the consecration had to be done by the Pope in union with all the bishops so that there could be no mistaking the effects as being attributable to His mother's Immaculate Heart, and point to the fact that so far, it seems like nothing has happened.  Must a dramatic reversal of the devil's fortunes in the world follow instantaneously on the heels of the consecration in order for it to be legit?  Maybe.  That would seem to be the most obvious way of establishing cause and effect.  But I don't know that that is the only way.  I do know that in my own experience, whenever God has granted my prayers for a huge, life-changing grace, a period of penance -- mitigated in both length and severity, yet still producing real suffering -- has always preceded the moment in which the grace is actually given.  Maybe, at this late date, when the errors of Russia have not only spread throughout the world but gained ascendency, we are going to have a similar period of penance before the graces are actually given.  It's not like we don't deserve that, and much more.

Now we come back to the liturgical desolation in which Lent culminates.  What we seem to forget is that, unlike the devil, whose infernal headquarters is probably designed and furnished in the same brutalist style as that pictured above, our mother the Church does not intend this desolation to be permanent.  Permanent desolation, in which we have entrenched ourselves for decades in the name of bringing the Church into step with the Modern World, brings on despair, and despair leads to hell.  The desolation of Good Friday and Holy Saturday is mitigated in both duration and severity.  The altar is bare and the tabernacle empty, but they are not destroyed, leaving us with good hope for their restoration.  And this very short, hopeful desolation leads to the Resurrection and eternal life.

Thursday, April 07, 2022

The Supreme Court: A Refutation of "We the People"

For behold the sovereign the Lord of Hosts shall take away from Jerusalem, and from Juda the valiant and the strong, the whole strength of bread, and the whole strength of water.  The strong man, and the man of war, the judge, and the prophet, and the cunning man, and the ancient.  The captain over fifty, and the honorable in countenance, and the counsellor, and the architect, and the skillful in eloquent speech.  And I will give children to be their princes, and the effeminate shall rule over them.  And the people shall rush one upon another, and every man against his neighbor: the child shall make it tumult against the ancient, and the base against the honorable.  For a man shall take hold on his brother, one of the house of his father, saying: Thou hast a garment, be thou our ruler, and let this ruin be under thy hand.  Isaiah 3:1-6

Today the Senate confirmed as a Justice of the Supreme Court a woman who does not know what a woman is, nominated by a man who does not know what day it is or what he is doing half the time.

I don't know much more about the new Justice than her infamous answer to the obvious question of what "woman" means, and I don't need to know.  You don't have to drink the entire gallon of milk to find out if it's sour.  That someone so utterly void of common sense could be taken seriously as a candidate for any judgeship proves how far we as a nation have fallen.

We should also not lose sight of the fact that the importance of this appointment to the High Court proves what a failure our system is, and how not in charge of our own affairs we really are.  If We the People really ran the show, we would not need to be so obsessed with who is on the Supreme Court.  We cannot possibly be as free as we flatter ourselves that we are in a world where, every time the Supreme Court is in session, we sit on the edge of our seats, biting our nails, wondering what new 16-ton weights the court is going to drop on us from on high.  As the eyes of servants are on the hands of their masters, so are our eyes unto the U.S. Supreme Court, til it have mercy on us.  What a great deal we got when we got rid of King George III!

And what a great deal we got when we decided we did not need the social Kingship of Christ.  How free we are!  What an awesome rulership we have!

The worst punishment God can impose on us is to let us have our own way.

Saturday, April 02, 2022

Surprised by Bone Broth

 

It was only three or four years ago that I never saw myself making bone broth.  The whole idea seemed rather disgusting.  But Nourishing Traditions led to my first batch of beef bone broth, with some rather amazing results.  So then I had to (a) get Sally Fallon's book Nourishing Broth, which goes more in-depth into bone broth, its properties and its benefits, and (b) expand the role of bone broth in my daily life.  

To make bone broth, you need -- bones, among other things.  You can -- and should -- save up your leftover bones in the freezer, but if you live alone, you are going to take a long time to save up enough for the stockpot.  The greatest effort you will expend in making bone broth is in finding the ingredients.  Because supermarket butcher counters tend to get their meats and fish pre-filleted, they don't have the throwaway parts of animals.  But the throwaway parts are packed with nutrients, and broth-making is how we extract these.  Fortunately for me, one of my local grocery stores puts out knuckle bones, split cow hoofs, chicken feet, marrow bones and other such items on an as-available basis.  The day I first went looking for things to make stock out of, they had split cow hoofs, so I picked up a couple of these, plus a couple of pieces of ox tail.

Since the ox-tail pieces had some meat on them, I first browned those by roasting them in the oven.  Meanwhile, the cow hoofs soaked for an hour in water with a cup of vinegar.  This draws out added nutrients.  Then the ox-tail pieces, a couple of sliced carrots, a coarsely-chopped onion, and a few garlic cloves cut in half lengthwise joined the party, which moved onto the stove.  I brought the whole thing to a boil, skimmed the scum off the top (there wasn't much this time) and then lowered the heat to near the lowest setting and let it simmer for about 24 hours.  About an hour before stopping the simmer I tossed in some sprigs of fresh thyme.  Then I turned off the heat, let it cool for a while, pulled out the solid pieces and then ran the broth through a fine mesh strainer into another big pot, which I put in the refrigerator.  When it was completely cool, I skimmed the fat off the top, and voilà: a big pot of jiggly, tan-colored, translucent magic.  You can store it in the fridge in mason jars or freeze in freezer bags.  You can also cook it down more later to make it more gelatinous.  

I'm not terribly adventurous when it comes to cooking, so I haven't done a lot of different experiments with broth; but so far, what I have tried has been a success.  I've used it as the base for a lentil stew, for creamy pasta sauces (including good ole macaroni and cheese), I've added it to hot coffee with cream, and I've drunk it hot.  It makes creamy sauces even creamier and smoother, and it's delicious itself as a hot breakfast beverage with a spoonful of sour cream and a little salt.  

What about the health effects?  I'm noticing a decrease in joint pain and dry eyes.  I'm feeling overall less inflamed.  It does a lot to quell my cravings, so it is an aid to fasting.  Especially I'm noticing an improvement to my eczema, which has been really plaguing me for weeks.  My skin feels softer, the itching has dramatically subsided and the lesions are beginning to heal.  

I started out my bone broth adventure with a little bit here and a little bit there, but it is clear to me that the stuff needs to be a staple in my kitchen.  I can't recommend it enough.  It well repays the little effort it takes to make it.

Friday, April 01, 2022

The SSPX Weighs In

 The SSPX holds that the collegial consecration has now been done, saying: 

It seems that many bishops joined the Pope in this act. In Switzerland, for example, the bishops, who were gathered together to conduct their business, acted collectively. In France, Jeanne Smits toured the dioceses and noted widespread participation.

Moreover, several episcopates had announced their participation, even before it was asked of them. It is therefore possible to affirm that the world episcopate associated itself with the consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, which was one of the conditions requested by Heaven.

The bishops of the SSPX also participated, although they used, not Pope Francis' text, but one based on a draft by Archbishop Lefebvre.  As a side note, the fact that the SSPX not only joined in Pope Francis' consecration but also now come out and says that the consecration has been done as asked will probably still not be enough to satisfy those who continue to maintain that the SSPX is in schism.

Bishop Athanasius Schneider also appears to be of the opinion that the consecration of March 25th was The Big One, and has composed a prayer, to be found on the website of his Confraternity of Our Lady of Fatima, for the grace for the Pope to approve the Five First Saturdays of reparation, and for the hastening of Russia's conversion and the advent of the promised period of peace.

Sunday, March 27, 2022

Surprised by Anchovies

 

I have never been a fan of anchovies.  Anchovies on pizza is just sacrilegious.  The charter fishing boats  that my father would take me out on when I was a kid, that went out to the Channel Islands off the coast of California, had big tanks of live anchovies to use as bait, so I learned to think of anchovies as fish bait.

Imagine my surprise, then, to discover the splendors of colatura di alici, which is nothing other than -- fermented anchovies.   Made in Campania, Italy, it is a modern iteration of garum, prized throughout the ancient world, and the number one favorite condiment of the ancient Romans.  It does not have a strong flavor or smell of its own, but it does bring out the flavors in other things.  

Today I made a serving of macaroni and cheese from scratch, with  "springs" (rotini pasta), butter, cheese, heavy cream and beef bone broth, and mixed in some colatura.  Wow.  It was smooth, creamy and very flavorful.  No wonder my Roman ancestors consumed the stuff by the amphora-load.

So the humble anchovy is rehabilitated at Casa Anita, and has earned a place for itself in the pantry.  Although I will still never put it on pizza.

Saturday, March 26, 2022

Nourishing Traditions


I am a huge fan of tradition -- starting, but not ending, with traditional Catholicism.  I believe we need to get back all good traditions that we have stupidly cast away in the name of modernity.  So, it was providential that about a month and a half ago, I stumbled across Sally Fallon on Steve Cunningham's Resistance Podcast.  Podcasts cost me more money than pretty much any other form of entertainment, because when I listen to an interview with the author of an interesting-sounding book, I inevitably end up ordering the book.  So it was in this case.  And the book of which Sally Fallon is the author, Nourishing Traditions, is gradually becoming a game-changer.

Nourishing Traditions is more than just a cookbook.  Basically, Fallon's thesis is that most of what we eat these days is garbage.  The garbage we eat is making us sick, thanks to food production and processing methods that leach out nutrients and sometimes even add in toxins into the bargain.  In some cases, the "food" itself is not even really food.  Much of what's out there is designed, not to provide good nutrition, but to stimulate our cravings so we'll buy more.  Highly nutritious foods like butter, eggs and red meat are demonized, while crap gets foisted upon us as "healthy."  If we are to recover our health, says Fallon, we need to recover the traditions of our ancestors when it comes to the selection and preparation of foods.  In addition to recipes and instructions, Nourishing Traditions is full of information about how nutrition works, various types of foods, various types of food preparation, research into traditional diets, the dietary habits of isolated societies, and where to find supplies.  Fallon has a lot to say about the benefits of raw dairy products, germinated grains, fermentation (not just for beer), organ meats, stocks and broths, and much more.  The book is not the last word on all these things, but it is wide-ranging and a very good starting point if you're looking to turn over a new leaf in your culinary habits.  

And turning over a new leaf in culinary habits is a very good thing to do.  Lots of people have discovered the merits of fasting -- The Obesity Code by Dr. Jason Fung is another must-read -- but it seems to me that fasting is only part of the picture.  The big part is learning to prepare and eat foods that actually promote our health.  And it seems that vitamins and minerals are best gotten by way of food, rather than by relying on supplements.  After all, the food has been provided by God, Who knows how to give us exactly what we need; and we have generations of experience and tradition to guide us in how best to prepare it to get the most out of it. 

I awaited Fallon's book with baited breath.  Only tens of pages in, it made so much sense that I decided to start immediately with the low-hanging fruit -- which, in my own circumstances, turned out to be raw (unpasteurized) dairy.  Raw milk is illegal in some states, and unfortunately, it is not cheap; happily, however, it is legal in Idaho, and I have easy access to raw milk right in my own town.  I've always been lactose intolerant -- an unfortunate status for an ice cream fan -- but it turns out I can drink raw milk in moderation without too much difficulty.  I  fermented a quart of it to make whey, which is an ingredient in many of Fallon's recipes.  So far I've used whey in iced coffee (a little doesn't change the taste), to make salad dressings, and in a lentil soup recipe.   I also made a batch of beef bone broth that does very well as a base for sauces and soup.  I even add a little bone broth to hot coffee (and it also doesn't change the taste).  

And the results?  Well, I am still a fat, middle-aged broad and I still have a long way to go.  But I actually have started feeling better.  I feel like I'm getting nutrients I need, so a lot of cravings are quieting down.  My digestion seems to be improving.  I think the bone broth especially is dynamite.  My skin has begun to feel softer.  Hot coffee with some bone broth is a great way to start a busy day.  Bone broth, being jammed with good things your body needs, also allows you to go for a lot of hours without feeling hungry, and so makes it a lot easier to fast.  

So have I tossed all the contents of my pantry and my refrigerator to comply totally with the advice in Nourishing Traditions?  Nope, and I don't intend to, as that would be wildly imprudent.  This is all about building up good habits and routines, and that is best done gradually, starting first with things that are easiest and then working one's way up to harder or more involved things.  

People the world over are realizing that modernity and the ideology of the "Enlightenment" are a sham, and that we need to get back to the traditions of our ancestors, than whom it turns out we are not smarter after all -- quite the contrary.  In a world where our rulership is bent on keeping us chronically ill and selling us on the idea of feeding on dystopian, Frankenstein-like concoctions like lab-grown "meat," a very important set of traditions that we urgently need to recover is the traditions of food: its selection, its production, its preparation, its role in building up not only our bodies but our families and our communities.  Sally Fallon's book Nourishing Traditions is an invaluable help to getting us started on the road back to the good things in life that God gave us and that we never should have left behind.

Friday, March 25, 2022

Now Waiting and Seeing

Now the consecration is done, and we wait to find out if it was really done as asked.  At this point, it is unknown how many bishops joined in.  My own bishop joined.  Cardinal Cupich joined in, so in all probability every bishop who is beholden to him also joined.  In what can only be described as a very curious thing for a bunch of "schismatics" to do, the SSPX bishops joined, though they did not use Pope Francis' text.  Bishop Fellay led the Rosary and made the act of consecration from St. Thomas Aquinas seminary in Virgina.  In his sermon, which was in English, Bishop Fellay denied the rumors that the Society's bishops had received personal invitations, but, wanting to take part, accepted the Pope's open invitation to all bishops.

I was able to tune in to the ceremonies in Rome just in time for the act of consecration.  It was rather depressing to see all the clerics -- and even the boys' choir -- in Fauci diapers.  The Pope looked up at the statue of our Lady of Fatima during the consecration with apparent devotion, which some will no doubt attribute to consummate acting skills.  Not attributable to acting skills, consummate or otherwise, was his gray complexion and obvious feebleness.  The Pope was not the picture of health.  Intrepid journalists who watched all the ceremonies and sermons associated with the consecration commented on the Lutheran theology preached by the Pope; and, of course, there are the criticisms of the flaws in the act of consecration.  Maybe some of the evidence for today's act being The Big One is that, objectively, so many errors abound in the upper echelons of the Church that if the consecration were to be delayed any longer, it would have become impossible for any Pope to find the words to do even the bare minimum.

So now we watch, and wait.  I continue to think this was probably the fulfillment of our Lady's wishes, but of course we will really only know when we see the fruits.  Let us pray that they are what we have been waiting for.


Tuesday, March 22, 2022

The Text Is Out

Today the Vatican released the text of the forthcoming consecration.  It is a long prayer, but this is the money quote:

Therefore, Mother of God and our Mother, to your Immaculate Heart we solemnly entrust and consecrate ourselves, the Church and all humanity, especially Russia and Ukraine. Accept this act that we carry out with confidence and love. Grant that war may end and peace spread throughout the world. The “Fiat” that arose from your heart opened the doors of history to the Prince of Peace. We trust that, through your heart, peace will dawn once more. To you we consecrate the future of the whole human family, the needs and expectations of every people, the anxieties and hopes of the world.

People who previously were complaining that the Pope "only invited" the bishops of the world to join the consecration of Russia are now complaining that, in addition to Russia, the above prayer consecrates pretty much everyone to the Immaculate Heart.  This complaint is lodged on the grounds that Mary allegedly said that ONLY Russia was to be consecrated to her Immaculate Heart.

Let's stop and think about this for a second.  Here we have Catholics saying that it is a bad thing to consecrate everybody to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  We have Catholics saying that God, and therefore our Mother, are going to be displeased because everybody is consecrated to the Immaculate Heart.  Or, put another way: we have Catholics who think that our Lord and our Lady can be offended over any person being consecrated to the Immaculate Heart.  

If the above act omitted to specifically and explicitly consecrate Russia to the Immaculate Heart, then we would have a problem.  Clearly, however, we have (a) a consecration; (b) of Russia; (c) to the Immaculate Heart.  All the boxes are checked with the above prayer.  Our Lady specifically asked that the Pope, in union with all the world's bishops, consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart.  She did not say that on no account was anyone or anything else not to be consecrated to her Immaculate Heart in addition to Russia.  The "ONLY" in "ONLY Russia" was not said by her, but is an accretion of legalists.  The act of consecration has a lot of extra verbiage in it, like most things that come out of the Vatican in our time, and seeks to take the occasion of consecrating Russia to also consecrating many other things (which, in itself, is rather praiseworthy than blameworthy).  Nevertheless, the act still contains that which was specifically requested by our Lady.  As long as Russia is named, she will not be somehow less consecrated, or continue to go unconsecrated, just because humanity is also consecrated.

Am I here saying this act of consecration is perfect?  It would certainly read somewhat differently if I had written it.  But nobody asked me to write it.  The question is not whether it is perfect, but whether it is adequate and meets the requirements given by our Lady, which are fewer than the requirements imposed by keyboard warriors in the tradosphere.  If I were evaluating this as a legal document, I would say I think it checks all the necessary boxes.  And, as I have said before, I think the Pope has effectively ordered the bishops to join him in this act.  If the Pope sends each bishop a letter advising that he intends for the consecration to be an act of the universal Church that the bishop is expected to participate in at around the same time that the Pope is going to do it -- which he has -- then it can safely be assumed that this is not optional, even if it is couched in diplomatic language.

There are Catholics out there who are getting dangerously close to rooting for March 25th to be a failure, and behaving as though God and His omniscience and omnipotence do not somehow factor into the equation or cannot supply what is humanly lacking -- which, if they are not careful, would give them two more things in common with the worldlings whose feverish activities make the consecration of Russia not a luxury, but a necessity.

Sunday, March 20, 2022

On Becoming Embittered

Thus saith the Lord: Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the Lord.  For he shall be like tamaric in the desert, and he shall not see when good shall come: but he shall dwell in dryness in the desert in a salt land, and not inhabited.  Jeremiah 17:5-6.

St. Augustine, commenting on the above passage from Jeremiah, says that when we trust in our own selves, we are also ensnared in the chain of this curse, since we too are human.  If we trust in another person, that is the wrong kind of humility, but if we trust in ourselves, that is dangerous pride.  

A few verses later, Jeremiah says: "The heart is perverse above all things, and unsearchable, who can know it?"  When people are deprived of some crucial good for long enough, in the absence of a special and completely gratuitous grace, they'll stop wanting it and even stop regarding it as something desirable.  This is one of the disordered ways that our fallen, perverse heart copes with being subjected to evil over protracted periods.

How do I know this?  It happened to me.  When I was a kid, peace and tranquillity were rare and fleeting things in my home life.  Emotional abuse, quarrels, passive-aggressive behavior, unrelenting criticism, manipulation, constant turmoil and general negativity are a daily way of life in a family where alcoholism looms large.  I used to dream of a home life where the tranquility of order reigned, and gazed longingly and not a little enviously at families who appeared to have that blessing, like a kid gazing longingly through a store window at toys his parents can't afford to buy him.

But then, after years and years of the turmoil, there came a moment where I just stopped wishing for peace in my home.  I didn't merely give up on the possibility of getting it: I ceased wanting it altogether.  The worst thing of all is that I actually looked upon it with scorn.  I viewed everybody who had it as a bunch of saps and suckers.   I can't lay my finger on the exact moment when this change happened, but I know it happened.  I know that beforehand, things were one way in my heart, and afterward, they were another way.  If, after that point, I had been offered what I had always wanted, I would have not only turned it down but sent it off with a flea in its ear.  The long and the short of it is that I became bitter, and took it upon myself to trust only in myself and my own judgment, since it seemed clear to me that I could not trust anybody else.  It's taken a lot of years of removal from the situation -- now more than half my lifetime thus far -- and a lot of help from long-suffering friends to overcome it, and it's still an ongoing process.  Letting go and trusting in God, and not making things a hundred times harder than they have to be, is still a wrench.

Now I look upon the wasteland of social media and Catholics scorning and deriding and minutely criticizing the upcoming and long-awaited consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart, and I think I see the same thing at work.  We Catholics have been so long abused and trampled and experimented on and tyrannized over by those who were supposed to look after us as shepherds, that we have become embittered.  Now that the abuse has continued for multiple generations, we actually think that this state of affairs is normal, and we fear to have it disturbed, even while we hate it.  We see our shepherds not leading us as they should, and so we take it upon ourselves to rely on our own judgment even about the Catholic faith.  Out of our judgment comes a detailed script for how things ought to be -- like, say, the consecration of Russia -- and we expect this to be followed to the letter.  But, since what we see so far doesn't conform precisely to our script, we reject it before it even happens.  

Has Pope Francis been another Gregory the Great?  Nope; but if you delve a little into the history of the Popes, you find that he is far from the first Pope to sow confusion and error, even in matters of doctrine.  Is he the true Pope?  A moral unanimity of the cardinals and bishops think so, as well as the Church as a whole, which peacefully (if apprehensively) accepted him as the Pope upon his election.  Does it matter that he "invites" rather than "orders" the bishops of the world to join in the act of consecration?  An "invitation" is very often an "order" under the guise of diplomacy; and from a Pope as authoritarian as Francis, we can safely take "invite" to mean "do it or else."  Does it matter that both Russia and Ukraine are to be consecrated?  Surely, the consecration of Ukraine takes nothing away from the consecration of Russia, as long as Russia is specifically consecrated; besides which, Ukraine has historically been a part of and closely bound up with Russia.  Is Pope Francis motivated by selfish considerations in doing this consecration?  Maybe, but so what?  Our Lady of Fatima did not specify what internal dispositions the Pope is to have in making the consecration.  Has Pope Francis earned our skepticism?  Yes, but this can be carried much too far.

It seems like the red-pilling of the world that started in 2020 continues to the present day, as we see people even in the trad Catholic world coming out into the open with every appearance of wanting this forthcoming consecration to be a failure.  Some who claim that Francis is not the true Pope are even saying it will be a curse on humanity that will bring on a nuclear war.  What a horrible thing to even think.  It appears there are those who fear being proved wrong more even than the prospect of committing blasphemy.

What we ought to be doing is spending the rest of this week praying that the consecration finally be done as asked, and that we not become the tamaric in the desert that shall not see when good shall come.