The mechanics of fear, the silent majority, and the difference between fortitude and courage

Fr. Hunwicke has a post today, in the aftermath of the Correctio, about the origin and mechanics of fear and its paralyzing effect on even the most orthodox clergy. HERE.  It starts out with him quoting a comment from a previous post from a diocesan priest:

“There is another territory to be heard; the diocesan clergy, and I can testify to the fear out there. I feel it myself; … I entered the diocesan priesthood from Lutheranism … my decision to sign may come with danger … Unfortunately, we live in times of great venality and danger for those who just express simple orthodoxy. Going this next step is necessary but fraught with peril. Cosmas and Damian, Cyprian and Justina, pray for our courage.”

On the one hand, I get it. The fear is not unfounded at all. On the other hand, I don’t really get it. Being a layman, maybe empathy isn’t possible in this case. But it seems to me that if care of souls is your primary job function, don’t you have a moral obligation to extend every advantage possible to aid these souls in their journey? This is a situation that requires going beyond fortitude and into courage. I will explain the difference in a moment.
This also applies to academics and all those whose income/title/occupation depends on not stirring the pot, nearly all of them apparently sitting around in terrified silence. Okay so the Correctio is up to 147 signatures. Knock me over with a feather. I’m sorry, but if you are an actual Catholic in a visible role within the Church in some function, and you believe that Bergoglio is pope, you better get your name on this thing pronto. If you want something to really fear, know that God is watching you sit there and do nothing.
Bishops and Cardinals, same goes for you. Are there not even a dozen of you? If you believe Bergoglio is pope, get your own Correctio drawn up and issue it with whatever authority you may or may not have. Do something.
Which brings me back to the Saint Louis Catholic poll, wherein 72% of the readership confessed to believing Benedict is pope. It’s one thing to vote in an anonymous poll, quite another to put your name on it. But we have another problem – none of those hundreds of people can sign/support the Correctio, because the Correctio addresses Bergoglio as true pope and AL as a legitimate magisterial document, neither of which we believe to be true. We need our own Declaratio, spelling out the well-defined argument for Benedict’s failed abdication, by reason of Substantial Error, as foreseen by Canon 188. Then we need people way above sub-layman Mark Docherty to sign it. Hundreds and hundreds of clergy, academics, and professionals in official Church positions and the media. I know, it’s oh so hard, but this is the task God has chosen for you, so get cracking.
Now back to fortitude and courage.
Fortitude is about patiently bearing hardship through strength. It’s about endurance, resilience, steadfastness. It may or may not involve taking positive action, and it can be demonstrated even in the absence of fear. The root is “fortis”, which means strength.
Courage goes beyond fortitude. Courage is about taking positive action amid risk and fear. In fact, in order for courage to be demonstrated, the element of of fear must be present. Courage is about valor, bravery, nerve. The root is “cor” which means heart. It goes to the heart. That’s why a synonym for courageous is “lion hearted”.
If you have souls in your care, no matter your ecclesial rank, you have a solemn duty here. If your name has a bunch of letters after it, you have a duty. If you have any kind of standing or platform, you have a duty. Here is a pious exercise: Review the facts of the failed partial abdication. Confirm yourself in the obvious meaning of what Benedict attempted, and according to Ganswein, that he believes he pulled off. Read Canon 188 and ask yourself, if attempting to change the intrinsic nature of the papacy does NOT rise to the level of Substantial Error, then what on earth ever could? Then go into a church and sit in one of the first rows. Look up and stare at your crucified Lord and Savior and say,
“I don’t care.”
“I don’t care that your bride is being raped. I don’t care that souls are being lost. I don’t care that the Church you founded has a false pope as its visible head. I want to keep it a secret, because it’s embarrassing. I more fear the revenge of men than I fear the fires of Hell. And so I choose silence. I choose comfort. I choose…cowardice.”
It’s time for some courage, boys and girls. It would also be great if you could pray for the Holy Ghost to deliver some courage to Pope Benedict, still reigning.

Initial thoughts on the Correctio

It’s very well done, and far ranging. The “Elucidation” at the end, calling out Modernism and Lutheranism, is very much appreciated. They also did a great job at PR, very professional, with a coordinated release in multiple languages, and several mainstream outlets picking it up.
On the downside, there is plenty of genuflecting to Vatican II, although perhaps that was a strategic move deemed necessary to promote acceptance.
You really do need to read the whole thing, not just the media summaries HERE.
I’m pressed for time, but there is one quick point I want to make for today. The paragraph I’ve seen written about the most is this:

Those Catholics, however, who do not clearly grasp the limits of papal infallibility are liable to be led by the words and actions of Your Holiness into one of two disastrous errors: either they will come to embrace the heresies which are now being propagated, or, aware that these doctrines are contrary to the word of God, they will doubt or deny the prerogatives of the popes. Others again of the faithful are led to put in doubt the validity of the renunciation of the papacy by Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. Thus, the Petrine office, bestowed upon the Church by our Lord Jesus Christ for the sake of unity and faith, is so used that a way is opened for heresy and for schism. Further, noting that practices now encouraged by Your Holiness’s words and actions are contrary not only to the perennial faith and discipline of the Church but also to the magisterial statements of Your predecessors, the faithful reflect that Your Holiness’s own statements can enjoy no greater authority than that of former popes; and thus the authentic papal magisterium suffers a wound of which it may not soon be healed.

The fact that the authors felt the need to include the bolded sentence is quite interesting, especially given the July 16th date of the letter. Also, in the sentence that precedes it, what exactly are they referring to when they use the word “popes”? But I think there are bigger implications if you read the paragraph that immediately proceeds:

We, however, believe that Your Holiness possesses the charism of infallibility, and the right of universal jurisdiction over Christ’s faithful, in the sense defined by the Church. In our protest against Amoris laetitia and against other deeds, words and omissions related to it, we do not deny the existence of this papal charism or Your Holiness’s possession of it, since neither Amoris laetitia nor any of the statements which have served to propagate the heresies which this exhortation insinuates are protected by that divine guarantee of truth. Our correction is indeed required by fidelity to infallible papal teachings which are incompatible with certain of Your Holiness’s statements.

So after taking great pains to claim that AL was not infallibly promulgated because no precise formulations were used in its language (I did not quote from those passages), now we get to the part where previously doctrines promulgated infallibly are in conflict with the teaching of Bergoglio.
I’ve read this paragraph several times. Read the two paragraphs again, in sequence. It’s very carefully worded. Maybe it’s bias, but it seems to me what it is saying is this: “Listen here, pal. We are already doing you a HUGE favor by giving you the benefit of the doubt, for now, that you really are the pope. But party time is over, and it’s time for you to prove it. If you really did receive the charism of infallibility because you were validly elected, then you need to profess teaching on these matters that is in communion with perennial Church teaching. Or else…”
Now think about the stunning poll over at Saint Louis Catholic, where 72% of respondents confessed to believing Benedict is pope. The authors and signatories of the Correctio could not have had any idea about the enormity of support behind this thesis. Also, not one of us in the Benedict camp could have signed on to the Correctio, due to the insertion of the second quoted paragraph, giving it almost a double effect. It’s something along the lines of this paragraph being strategic, whether the authors intended it or not at the time, because it offers the opportunity to open war on a second front.
I need to spend a little more time with it.

The cleaving of the Church as prophesied by Bergoglio is imminent

So a few things happened this week? 72% of polled Trads think Benedict is the pope HERE .  On the exact one year anniversary of the dubia, antipope Bergoglio founded a new institute dedicated to the destruction of the family, thereby answering said dubia HERE. Hellboy Jamth Martin Ethjay tripled down on husbands kissing husbands during Mass, and anyone who disagrees is a Nazi. Massive hurricanes and massive earthquakes.  Anything else going on this week?  North Korea. Anything else?
Oh, the homily today:

The Pontiff observes, “Always a scandal begins with this phrase: ‘But how come?’” He went on to say, “When you hear this sentence, it smells,” and “scandal follows.”
The Pharisees express their disappointment at the “impurity of not following the law”, Francis explains. They were scandalized by “the impurity of not following the law.” They knew “the Doctrine” very well, knew how to go “on the way of the Kingdom of God,” knew “better than anyone how things ought to have been done,” but “had forgotten the first commandment, of love.” Then, “”hey were locked in the cage of sacrifices,” perhaps thinking, “But let’s make a sacrifice to God, let us do all we have to do, “so we are saved.” In summary, they believed that salvation came from themselves, they felt safe. “”No,” said Pope Francis. “God saves us, saves us Jesus Christ”.
Francis dwells on “That ‘how come?’, which we’ve heard so many times from Catholics when they saw works of mercy. How come? Jesus is clear, He is very clear: ‘Go and learn.’ He sent them to learn, right? ‘Go and learn what mercy means. [That’s what] I want, and not sacrifices, for I did not come to call the righteous but the sinners.’ If you want to be called by Jesus, recognize yourself a sinner.”
The papal exhortation to recognize ourselves as sinners, not guilty of “sin” in the abstract but guilty of “concrete sins”: so many “we all have committed them,” he said. “Let us look on Jesus with that merciful glance full of love,” he continued.
While still dwelling on the scandal, he noted that there are so many hypocritical scandals, “There are so many, many – and always, even in the Church today. They say, ‘No, you cannot, it’s all clear, it’s all, no, no – those are sinners, we have to turn them away.’ Many saints have also been persecuted or suspected. We think of St. Joan of Arc, sent to the stake, because they thought she was a witch, and condemned her. A saint! Think of Saint Teresa, suspected of heresy, think of Bl. [Antonio] Rosmini. ‘Mercy I desire, and not sacrifices.’
And he concluded, “The door to meet Jesus is recognizing ourselves as we are: the truth [about ourselves], [that we are] Sinners. And he comes, and we meet. It is very beautiful to meet Jesus.”

Bergoglio believes as Luther did, that we are incapable of reforming our lives, incapable of resisting sin. We don’t really have free will, but rather our will is so damaged after the fall, that we can never make right choices on our own.  Which also means we aren’t really to blame for the sins, because it was concupiscence’s fault, not ours. When we do make right choices, it was really purely God’s grace that produced the decision, and we had nothing to do with it. It’s called Bondage of the Will, and when followed to its logical end is chaos. If it really is true that we have no control over our choices, bad or good, then what is the point of any of this? It’s the Christianity of puppets.
Yes, we are all sinners.  But rooting out sin, especially mortal sin, is possible. God never stops sending His grace, and when we reciprocate by cooperating with His grace, we are capable of doing good, and of greatly reforming our lives. Isn’t this the inescapable message of the Gospel? It seems to me that men who think otherwise are themselves so deeply lost in sin that they can’t imagine it humanly possible to stop. That’s the simplest explanation, whether it is Bergoglio, Luther, or a billion dissenting ‘catholics.’
The pace of events appears to again be accelerating, as we rapidly approach the 100th anniversary of the Fatima Miracle of the Sun (13 October) HERE as well as the 500th anniversary of Protestant Revolt (31 October). Remember Sister Lucia’s letter to Cardinal Caffarra?

Cardinal Caffarra explained that Saint John Paul II had commissioned him to plan and establish the Pontifical Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family. At the beginning of this work, the cardinal wrote a letter to Sister Lucia of Fatima through her bishop, since he could not do it directly. “Inexplicably, since I did not expect a reply, seeing as I had only asked for her prayers, I received a long letter with her signature, which is now in the archives of the Institute,” the Italian cardinal said. “In that letter we find written: ‘The final battle between the Lord and the kingdom of Satan will be about Marriage and the Family.’ Don’t be afraid, she added, because whoever works for the sanctity of Marriage and the Family will always be fought against and opposed in every way, because this is the decisive issue. Then she concluded: ‘nevertheless, Our Lady has already crushed his head’.” HERE

That institute that JPII commissioned Cardinal Caffarra to establish is the same one that Bergoglio abolished this week, two weeks after +Caffarra’s sudden death, replaced by the new institute to enforce Amoris Laetitia HERE. Could the signs be any more clear?
Remember, Bergoglio himself infamously prophesied:

“It is not to be excluded that I will enter history as the one who split the Catholic Church.” HERE

You really need to get your head around the imminent cleaving of the Church. You will be facing your own non veni pacem moment (Matt 10:34) when it happens. Have the courage to make the right choice, and take whoever you can with you. You’re not crazy. All the signs are there, and whatever it is that ends up being the final wedge event, trust me, it will be glaringly obvious if you are looking for it. God won’t let anyone be tricked into choosing the wrong side, they will choose the wrong side of their own free will. They’re already doing it. We also know from from the Abomination of Desolation discourse in Matt 24 that the final religious deception, which this may or may not be, will be so great that it will consume nearly everyone (including even the elect, had those times not been cut short).
So stay frosty. Stay confessed. Hone your bearing these next few weeks. Pray.

“Every one therefore that shall confess me before men, I will also confess him before my Father who is in heaven. But he that shall deny me before men, I will also deny him before my Father who is in heaven. Do not think that I came to send peace upon earth: I came not to send peace, but the sword. For I came to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man’s enemies shall be they of his own household. He that loveth father or mother more than me, is not worthy of me; and he that loveth son or daughter more than me, is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not up his cross, and followeth me, is not worthy of me. He that findeth his life, shall lose it: and he that shall lose his life for me, shall find it.” Matt 10:32-39

Don’t let fake news keep you away from the polls. Hurry, vote today!

The truth isn’t determined by popular opinion. Or as Chesterton famously said, “Fallacies do not cease to be fallacies because they become fashions.” So don’t think that’s what I am getting at here.
There is a very interesting poll going on right now from The Timman over at Saint Louis Catholic. HERE He asks readers their opinion, given the available data, “Who is pope?” As of this writing, with 591 votes counted, an astonishing 73% admit to believing that Benedict is the one true living pope.  Talk about a silent majority!
Now, Tradland is small, but it’s not 591 small. There should be a couple thousand votes by now, and there is only one day left on the poll. So please help get out the vote, if for no other reason than this: I guarantee that antipope Bergoglio will see the results of this poll.
I imagine the rage will be heard across the Tiber.

Hillary’s Blame Book highlights the glorious result of Fake Polls

The excerpts I’ve seen so far reflect a psychotic detachment from reality and total lack of introspection. In other words, totally predictable. Several quotes have caught my eye, but this one really resonated:
hillary quote 2
Forget about Hillary for a second, if you can. Hopefully soon we can all forget about her forever. Focus on the dynamic of the voters. They didn’t do enough, because they didn’t think they needed to. Or they didn’t do enough because they were embarrassed by her. Either way, they thought Hillary had the election in the bag, because the fake polls had her ahead by ten points. The fake news media predicted a landslide. Somehow, the enormous crowds turning out for Trump didn’t scare them, or maybe their media just never showed them. We know for a fact the dismal turnouts for Hillary’s events weren’t televised.
Bottom line, the alternate reality crafted by the Left worked so well, it cost them the election. It’s okay to go ahead and luxuriate in that just a little bit.
I wrote about this dynamic the day after the election. HERE

I awoke 8 Nov 2016 to facebook posts of very long election lines in PA, my native place. A good sign, even in suburban Philadelphia…Then I saw the lines in the blue collar wards within Philadelphia. Very good sign. Even the unions were going for Trump. There is no early voting in PA – you must go to the polls on election day. A bright, sunny, mild election day. Deo Gratias.
In AZ, my current place, about 70% of ballots are cast via early voting. But yesterday there were widespread reports of long lines in suburban and rural places. Republican places. Good sign. AZ is typically a Red state for national elections and statewide races, but we have just enough Lefties to make things interesting sometimes. They started saying AZ was in play about two months ago, after Pussygate.
Now, I happen to live in central Phoenix, in one of the Bluer districts. Our Dem Congresswomen was re-elected with 61%. I don’t think I saw one Trump sign anywhere near my house. And interestingly, at houses full of signs for Dem candidates for all the other races, no Hillary signs. I noticed it weeks ago. For every ten houses with loads of Dem signs, maybe one had a Hillary sign.

So the big question was, what would the lines look like in my heavily Democrat district?

During the lunch hour, I decided to take a drive to check it out. Surely this would be the busiest time, other than 5:15-6pm, right?


Yeah. So I had a pretty good idea at 12:35pm where this was headed. This is what played out across America. In PA, OH, MI, WI, and FLORIDA.
Republicans showed up in droves, with great misgivings about their own candidate, but determined to stop HER. Dems were either repulsed enough to stay away, or else thought Trump didn’t have a chance.
Probably, the latter. They believed their own fake polls.

Thank you, fake news.

My 9/11 story, FWIW

I was 34 years old, with three kids, ages 7, 9, 11. We lived in the NYC metro area, in Southwest Connecticut, with many neighbors who took the train into the city every day. We had recently repatriated to the U.S. from a temporary Canadian assignment.
My office was in Stamford. I arrived early to hit the gym on our campus, as was my custom. It was a beautiful, slightly crisp Tuesday morning. I was at my desk when the first plane hit the North Tower, and word went through the building like wildfire. At least half of my coworkers had a spouse or relative who worked in the city.
In the next 17 minutes, there was a lot of confusion about what had happened. Many of the reports were saying a small plane had strayed into the tower. Information was hard to come by, with streaming video on the internet being not exactly high quality in 2001. As more people got online, the bandwidth became even more choked, which slowed things to a frozen buffering mess. We turned to the radio as a back up.
In the 18th minute, the second plane hit the South Tower, and the mood changed dramatically. Everyone in that instant knew we were under attack. We didn’t know who it was, but we knew it wasn’t an accident. It was shocking.
All communications went down in the next two or three minutes. Neither cell phones nor landlines were working, and people were panicked. Our V.P. of H.R. hurried to hook up the only television we had, in the cafeteria. At 9:59 a.m., the room filled with screams and profanity as the South Tower collapsed. This was as big or a bigger shock than when the second plane hit. Even as we stood there watching the terrible fires, it had never entered my mind that the buildings could collapse. That V.P. turned to me, with her jaw dropped and face ashen, unable to speak. I said to her, “We need to close the office now.”
My wife and I were planning to meet for an early lunch and then Noon Mass at St. John’s (if you’re ever in the area, plan to visit – it’s now a minor basilica). Again, all communications were down. By the time she got to my office, I was already gone, headed to our kids’ school. When I got there, they had pulled all the kids into the gym to wait for parents to arrive. They had managed to get a phone call through to my wife, so she was on the way too. The sisters decided it would be best to not tell the kids what was going on, not wanting a panic on their hands depending on the whereabouts of the parents. I explained it to them in the car on the way home.
We spent the afternoon at home in front of the TV, like everyone else. The speculation began as to who did this and what could we do about it? No one had ever heard of al-Qaeda until about six months earlier, when the USS Cole investigation began to bring to light the organized network of terrorists lead by bin Laden. Were there more attacks planned? I remember telling my kids that things weren’t going to be the same for awhile, not even sure how long it would be until school reopened.
We got that answer from President Bush in his speech from the Oval Office that evening. America was going to be open the next morning. The government would be open, businesses would be open, schools would be open, etc. Anything less would be a sign of victory for the terrorists.
Earlier at Ground Zero, CORRECTION: This happened three days later, 14 Sept 2001. Bush made the famous bullhorn speech, which was a powerful moment. While he would go on to make a lot of mistakes, the initial response and the war against the taliban and al-Qaeda in Afghanistan was just. The Iraq War was not only a mistake, it was morally wrong from the beginning. But this day he showed leadership, and we needed it.

President Bush: “I want you all to know that America today is on bended knee, in prayer for the people whose lives were lost here, for the workers who work here, for the families who mourn. The nation stands with the good people of New York City and New Jersey and Connecticut as we mourn the loss of thousands of our citizens.”
Rescue Worker: “I can’t hear you!”
President Bush: “I can hear you! I can hear you, the rest of the world hears you, and the people — the people who knocked these buildings down, will hear all of us soon. The nation sends its love and compassion to everybody who is here. Thank you for your hard work. Thank you for making the nation proud, and may God bless America.”

“Never Forget” means forcing yourself to relive that day. Force yourself to watch the videos. But more importantly, educate the younger generations.  All of my kids were old enough to “never forget”. But anyone younger than 20 has no idea. You need to explain the details. They have no idea how iconic those towers were, which of course is why they were targeted. They have no idea how resolute the response was, and the honesty regarding the motive of the attackers. I had only recently begun learning the truth about Islam, and these events were key for me. Lastly, they have no idea how everyone came together and were united as Americans, something that hardly seems possible today. That’s what sticks with me the most, 16 years later.
Dear Father in Heaven,
We give you thanks for your great glory, and for the many blessings in our lives.
Today we pray for all those who lost their lives in the terror attacks of September 11, 2001. We pray for their families, and all those who grieve the losses of this terrible day. We also remember in a special way, firefighters, police, and all first responders, as well as our active duty and veteran military. We entrust them all to your protection.
Lord, be our strength. Pour forth your abundant grace. Watch over and guide us, our family and friends, and our leaders, always to seek your Will in humble service – as individuals, as a community, and as a nation.
Lord, we place our trust in you today, hoping that this once great republic might stand together in unity as one nation, under God, indivisible.
May God Bless the United States of America.

st johns
The basilica of Saint John the Evangelist, Stamford CT

The importance of linear thinking: Separating the Bergoglian Heresy from the Bergoglian anti-papacy

Jonathan Byrd, the gentleman who took over Fr. Carota’s blog, has written a declaration on the Bergoglian anti-papacy HERE.  He links to several blogs, including this one, which already make his point for him. Mr. Byrd himself makes several good points, which I will get to tomorrow. But first, I wanted to highlight a distinction that often gets lost.
The first link he provides is from RadTrad Thomist, where Fr. Paul Kramer’s proof was posted a few days ago HERE. Unfortunately, I think Fr. Kramer muddied the water a bit, even though nothing he says is untrue. Although he does cover the details of Benedict’s Substantial Error and subsequent failed abdication, he also spends a great deal of time talking about the Bergoglian Heresy as being a means of the anti-papacy. As if to say, “Here is the proof that Bergoglio is an antipope (because Benedict is the only living pope), but hey, if that’s not proof enough, Bergoglio also isn’t pope because he isn’t Catholic.”
So if everything Fr. Kramer says is true, and it is, why take issue with his presentation of it? Well, because the ability to reason, and to follow a logical, linear thought process, is very important.
Benedict’s failed partial resignation is the only thing that matters. Benedict, for reasons known only to him, attempted to bifurcate the papacy into an “expanded Petrine ministry”, with one “Active” member and one “Contemplative” member. Benedict tried to alter the divinely-instituted nature of the papacy, and his doing so was mind-blowing Substantial Error, rendering his abdication entirely invalid in accord with Canon 188. Full Stop. There was no abdication, and hence no conclave, no election, no coronation that followed.
Benedict is still THE ONLY pope. The invalid conclave which followed could have elected the most orthodox prelate who ever lived, and he would still be an anitpope. To focus on anything else unnecessarily complicates things. So while the Bergoglian Heresy is indeed horrific, soul destroying, and unprecedented, it’s actually a great comfort knowing that he was never the pope, and so never promulgated anything magisterially, and he will be completely abrogated and expunged. It’s not so comforting to know that this fact only remedies the acute problem, while leaving the chronic and systemic disease of nuChruch to be healed another day.
Mr. Byrd, welcome to the jungle. We got fun and games.