Leaving aside Lifesite News's reliance upon the misnamed Catechism of the Catholic Church, it is enought to note that neither Bergoglio nor McElroy believe that is their duty to denounce the sin of Sodm as repugnant in the sight of the true God of Divine Revelation, the Most Blessed Trinity. These disrupters, if you will, will do anything, up to and including relativizing the entirety of Divine Revelation while throwing stone after stone at those Catholics who accept the Sacred Deposit of Faith en toto, rather than to "offend" hardened sinners.
Well, this will make those steeped in unrepentant sins of perverse vice against the binding precepts of the Sixth and Ninth Commandments unhappy and quite angry. Our Lord, however, did not become Man in Our Lady’s Virginal and Immaculate Womb by the power of God the Holy Ghost to reaffirm hardened sinners in their lives of sin.
Faithful to Him, Saint Paul the Apostle was moved by God the Holy Ghost to write these words in his Epistle to the Romans that have been quoted many times on this website:
Wherefore God gave them up to the desires of their heart, unto uncleanness, to dishonour their own bodies among themselves. Who changed the truth of God into a lie; and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.
For this cause God delivered them up to shameful affections. For their women have changed the natural use into that use against which is their nature.
And in like manner, the men also, leaving the natural use of the women, have burned in their lusts one towards another, men with men working that which is filthy, and receiving in themselves the recompense which was due to their error.
And as they liked not to have God in their knowledge, God delivered them up to a reprobate sense, to do those things which are not convenient; being filled with all iniquity, malice, fornication, avarice, wickedness, full of envy, murder, contention, deceit, malignity, whisperers, detractors, hateful to God, contumelious, proud, haughty, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, foolish, dissolute, without affection, without fidelity, without mercy.
Who, having known the justice of God, did not understand that they who do such things are worthy of death; and not only they that do them, but they also that consent to them that do them. (Romans 1: 24-32)
Should what Jorge Mario Bergoglio and Robert McElroy believe to be the Catholic Church “apologize” for the way that Saint Paul the Apostle, chosen out of time by Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ Himself to be the Apostle to the Gentiles, denounced practitioners of moral depravity?
Is Saint Peter Damian, who feast was celebrated two days ago, Thursday, February 23, 2017, in need of rebuke by Jorge and Diarmuid for having written the following about pestilential clergy who would caught up in this terrible vice of sodomy? (Text found in Mrs. Randy Engel’s The Rite of Sodomy.)
According to Damian, the vice of sodomy "surpasses the enormity of all others," because:
"Without fail, it brings death to the body and destruction to the soul. It pollutes the flesh, extinguishes the light of the mind, expels the Holy Spirit from the temple of the human heart, and gives entrance to the devil, the stimulator of lust. It leads to error, totally removes truth from the deluded mind ... It opens up hell and closes the gates of paradise ... It is this vice that violates temperance, slays modesty, strangles chastity, and slaughters virginity ... It defiles all things, sullies all things, pollutes all things ... This vice excludes a man from the assembled choir of the Church ... it separates the soul from God to associate it with demons. This utterly diseased queen of Sodom renders him who obeys the laws of her tyranny infamous to men and odious to God... She strips her knights of the armor of virtue, exposing them to be pierced by the spears of every vice ... She humiliates her slave in the church and condemns him in court; she defiles him in secret and dishonors him in public; she gnaws at his conscience like a worm and consumes his flesh like fire. ... this unfortunate man (he) is deprived of all moral sense, his memory fails, and the mind's vision is darkened. Unmindful of God, he also forgets his own identity. This disease erodes the foundation of faith, saps the vitality of hope, dissolves the bond of love. It makes way with justice, demolishes fortitude, removes temperance, and blunts the edge of prudence. Shall I say more?"
No, dearest St. Peter Damian, I think not.
Like every saint before him, and every saint that will ever come after him, St. Peter Damian exhorts the cleric caught in the vice of sodomy to repent and reform his life and in the words of the Blessed Apostle Paul, "Wake up from your sleep and rise from the dead, and Christ will revive (enlighten) you." (Eph 5:14) In a remarkable affirmation of the Gospel message, he warns against the ultimate sin of despairing of God's mercy and the necessity of fasting and prayer to subdue the passions:
"... beware of drowning in the depths of despondency. Your heart should beat with confidence in God's love and not grow hard and impenitent, in the face of your great crime. It is not sinners, but the wicked who should despair; it is not the magnitude of one's crime, but contempt of God that dashes one's hopes."
Then, in one of the most beautiful elocutions on the grandeur of priestly celibacy and chastity ever written, Damian reminds the wayward cleric or monk of the special place reserved in Heaven for those faithful priests and monks who have willingly forsaken all and made themselves eunuchs for Christ's sake. Their names shall be remembered forever because they have given up all for the love of God, he says.
One of the very interesting historical sidebars to Damian's treatise is that he made no preference to the popular practice of distinguishing "notorious" from "non-notorious" cases of clerical immorality--a policy which can be traced back to the 9th century and the canonical reforms on ecclesiastical and clerical discipline by the great German Benedictine scholar and Archbishop of Mainz, Blessed Maurus Magnentius Rabanus (776?-856). Under this policy, the removal of clerics found guilty of criminal acts including sodomy, depended on whether or not his offense was publicly known, or was carried out and confessed in secret.
In cases that had become "notorious," the offending cleric was defrocked and/or handed over to the secular authorities for punishment. But if his crime was known only to a few persons such as his confessor or religious superior, the offending cleric was privately reprimanded, served a penance and then was permitted to continue at his post, or transferred to a similar post in a different diocese. Given the aggressive and predatory nature of the vice of sodomy, it is highly likely that such a policy contributed to, rather than inhibited, sodomical practices among clerics and religious between the mid-800s and the early 1000s. In any case, it was unlikely that Damian, who openly expressed his condemnation of too lenient canonical regulations related to the punishment of clerical sodomites and was so judicious in preserving the integrity of the priesthood and religious life, would have approved such a policy.
Saints are realists, which is no doubt why St. Peter Damian anticipated that his "small book" which exposes and denounces homosexual practices in all ranks of the clergy including the hierarchy, would cause a great commotion in the Church. And it did.
In anticipation of harsh criticism, the holy monk puts forth his own defense as a 'whistle-blower'. He states that his would-be critics will accuse him of "being an informer and a delator of my brother's crimes," but, he says, he has no fear of either "the hatred of evil men or the tongues of detractors."
Dear, dear reader, the words of St. Peter Damian that come thundering down to us through the centuries at a time in the Church when many shepherds are silent while clerical wolves, some disguised in miters and brocade robes, devour its lambs and commit sacrilege against their own spiritual sons:
... I would surely prefer to be thrown into the well like Joseph who informed his father of his brothers' foul crime, than to suffer the penalty of God's fury, like Eli, who saw the wickedness of his sons and remained silent. (Sam 2:4) ... Who am I, when I see this pestilential practice flourishing in the priesthood to become the murderer of another's soul by daring to repress my criticism in expectation of the reckoning of God's judgement? ... How, indeed, am I to love my neighbor as myself if I negligently allow the wound, of which I am sure he will brutally die, to fester in his heart? ... "So let no man condemn me as I argue against this deadly vice, for I seek not to dishonor, but rather to promote the advantage of my brother's well-being. "Take care not to appear partial to the delinquent while you persecute him who sets him straight. If I may be pardoned in using Moses' words, 'Whoever is for the Lord, let him stand with me.' (Ezek 32:26)"
As he draws his case against the vice of clerical sodomy to a close, St. Peter Damian pleads with another future saint, Pope Leo IX, urging the Vicar of Christ to use his office to reform and strengthen the decrees of the sacred canons with regard to the disposition of clerical sodomites including religious superiors and bishops who sexually violate their spiritual sons.
Damian asks the Holy Father to "diligently" investigate the four forms of the vice of sodomy cited at the beginning of his treatise and then provides him (Damian) with definitive answers to the following questions by which the "darkness of uncertainty" might be dispelled and an "indecisive conscience" freed from error:
1) Is one who is guilty of these crimes to be expelled irrevocably from holy orders?
2) Whether at a prelate's discretion, moreover, one might mercifully be allowed to function in office?
3) To what extent, both in respect to the methods mentioned above and to the number of lapses, is it permissible to retain a man in the dignity of ecclesiastical office?
4) Also, if one is guilty, what degree and what frequency of guilt should compel him under the circumstances to retire?
Damian closes his famous letter by asking Almighty God to use Pope Leo IX's pontificate "to utterly destroy this monstrous vice" that a prostrate Church may everywhere rise to vigorous stature." (Mrs. Randy Engel, The Rite of Sodomy, pp. 53-55)
Do Jorge Mario Bergoglio or Robert McElroy want to destroy this monstrous vice?
They want to befriend those who are attracted to and/or practice it and to see it "mainstreamed" in society, which is pretty much a fait accompli these days.
By contrast, consider how Pope Leo IX responded to the report presented to him by Saint Peter Damian:
The approximate date that Damian delivered the Book of Gomorrah to Pope Leo IX is generally held to be the second half of the first year of the pontiff's reign, i.e., mid-1049, although some writers put the date as late as 1051. We do know, absolutely, that the Pope did respond to Damian's concerns, as that response in the form of a lengthy letter (JL 4311; ItPont 4.94f., no.2) is generally attached to manuscripts of the work.
Pope Leo IX opens his letter to "his beloved son in Christ, Peter the hermit," with warm salutations and a recognition of Damian's pure, upright and zealous character. He agrees with Damian that clerics, caught up in the "execrable vice" of sodomy "verily and most assuredly will have no share in his inheritance, from which by their voluptuous pleasures they have withdrawn. " Such clerics, indeed profess, if not in words, at least by the evidence of their actions, that they are not what they are thought to be," he declares.
Reiterating the category of the four forms of sodomy that Damian lists,  the Holy Father declares that it is proper that by "our apostolic authority" we intervene in the matter so that "all anxiety and doubt be removed from the minds of your readers".
"So let it be certain and evident to all that we are in agreement with everything your book contains, opposed as it is like water to the fire of the devil," the Pope continues. "Therefore, lest the wantonness of this foul impurity be allowed to spread unpunished, it must be repelled by proper repressive action of apostolic severity, and yet some moderation must be placed on its harshness," he states.
Next, Pope Leo IX gives a detailed explanation of the Holy See's authoritative ruling on the matter.
In light of divine mercy, the Holy Father commands, without contradiction, that those who, of their own free will, have practiced solitary or mutual masturbation or defiled themselves by interfemoral coitus, but who have not done so for any length of time, nor with many others, shall retain their status, after having "curbed their desires" and "atoned for their infamous deeds with proper repentance".
However, the Holy See removes all hope for retaining their clerical status from those who alone or with others for a long time, or even a short period with many, "have defiled themselves by either of the two kinds of filthiness which you have described, or, which is horrible to hear or speak of, have sunk to the level of anal intercourse."
He warns potential critics, that those who dare to criticize or attack the apostolic ruling stand in danger of losing their rank. And so as to make it clear to whom this warning is directed, the Pope immediately adds, "For he who does not attack vice, but deals with it lightly, is rightly judged to be guilty of his death, along with the one who dies in sin."
Pope Leo IX praises Damian for teaching by example and not mere words, and concludes his letter with the beautiful hope that when, with God's help, the monk reaches his heavenly abode, he may reap his rewards and be crowned, "Ö in a sense, with all those who were snatched by you from the snares of the devil."
Clearly, on the objective immorality of sodomical acts, both Damian and Pope Leo IX were in perfect accord with one another. However, in terms of Church discipline, the pope appears to have taken exception with Damian's appeal for the wholesale deposition of all clerics who commit sodomical acts. I say, appears, because I believe that even in the matter of punishing known clerical offenders, both men were more in agreement than not.
Certainly, Damian, who was renown for his exemplary spiritual direction of the novitiates and monks entrusted to his care, was not unaware of certain mitigating circumstances that would diminish if not totally remove the culpability of individuals charged with the crime of sodomy.
For example, as with certain clerical sex abuse cases that have come to light today involving the Society of St. John and the Legionaries of Christ, which the Holy See has yet to investigate, some novices or monks may have been forced or pressured by their superiors to commit such acts. No doubt, it is circumstances such as these that prompted Pope Leo IX to use the term, "who of his own free will" in describing a cleric guilty of sodomy. Also among the four varieties of sodomy Damian discusses in his treatise, he states that interfemoral and anal coitus are to be judged more serious than solitary or mutual masturbation.
All in all, what this writer found to be most remarkable about the pope's letter to Damian, was the absolutist position Pope Leo IX took concerning the ultimate responsibility of the offending cleric's bishop or religious superior. If the latter criticized or attacked this apostolic decree, he risked losing his rank! Prelates who fail to "attack vice, but deal lightly with it," share the guilt and sentence of the one who dies in sin, the pope declared. (Mrs. Randy Engel, The Rite of Sodomy, pp. 57-58)
Writing five hundred years after Saint Peter Damian and Pope Leo IX, Pope Saint Pius V explained the just penalty due clerics caught in the act of unnatural vice:
That horrible crime, on account of which corrupt and obscene cities were destroyed by fire through divine condemnation, causes us most bitter sorrow and shocks our mind, impelling us to repress such a crime with the greatest possible zeal.
Quite opportunely the Fifth Lateran Council [1512-1517] issued this decree: "Let any member of the clergy caught in that vice against nature . . . be removed from the clerical order or forced to do penance in a monastery" (chap. 4, X, V, 31). So that the contagion of such a grave offense may not advance with greater audacity by taking advantage of impunity, which is the greatest incitement to sin, and so as to more severely punish the clerics who are guilty of this nefarious crime and who are not frightened by the death of their souls, we determine that they should be handed over to the severity of the secular authority, which enforces civil law.
Therefore, wishing to pursue with the greatest rigor that which we have decreed since the beginning of our pontificate, we establish that any priest or member of the clergy, either secular or regular, who commits such an execrable crime, by force of the present law be deprived of every clerical privilege, of every post, dignity and ecclesiastical benefit, and having been degraded by an ecclesiastical judge, let him be immediately delivered to the secular authority to be put to death, as mandated by law as the fitting punishment for laymen who have sunk into this abyss. (Pope Saint Pius V,Horrendum illud scelus, August 30, 1568.)
Death, not "brotherhood" and "mainstreaming" for the sake of "inclusivity," was what Pope Saint Pius V, faithful to the teaching of Saint Paul the Apostle in his Epistle to the Roman cited above, believed should be imposed on the clergy as well as the laity who were caught in "such an execrable crime" that caused him "such better sorrow" shocked his papal mind as he sought to "repress such a crime with the greatest possible zeal."
Jorge Mario Bergoglio/Francis and others in the conciliar structures want to provide "brotherhood" and "acceptance."
Just a slightly different approach, wouldn't you say?
A true pope understood the horror of such a detestable sin on the part of the clergy and sought to administer punishment to serve as a medicinal corrective for other priests and to demonstrate to the laity the horrific nature of such a moral crime.
A false "pope"seeks to appear as an agent of mercy when he is actually an apostle of eternal death.
Mind you, I am not suggesting the revival of this penalty in a world where it would not be understood and where the offender would be made a "martyr" for the cause of perversity, only pointing out the fact that the Catholic Church teaches that clerics and others in ecclesiastical authority who are guilty of serious moral crimes are deserving of punishment, not protection, by their bishops. Such is the difference yet again between Catholicism and conciliarism.
The disruption of the Catholic Faith caused by Modernism did not occur overnight. This disruption was spreading like a cancer after the death of Pope Saint Pius X on August 20, 1914, to such an extent that it was a mere forty-three years later that our last true Roman Pontiff thus far, Pope Pius XII, warned those attending the Thirtienth General Congregation of the Society of Jesus that there were some within their ranks who wanted to basis morality on what people were doing rather than upon what they ought to be doing in accord with the binding precepts of the Divine Positive Law and the Natural Law:
he more serious cause, however, was the movement in high Jesuit circles to modernize the understanding of the magisterium by enlarging the freedom of Catholics, especially scholars, to dispute its claims and assertions. Jesuit scholars had already made up their minds that the Catholic creeds and moral norms needed nuance and correction. It was for this incipient dissent that the late Pius XII chastised the Jesuits’ 30th General Congregation one year before he died (1957). What concerned Pius XII most in that admonition was the doctrinal orthodoxy of Jesuits. Information had reached him that the Society’s academics (in France and Germany) were bootlegging heterodox ideas. He had long been aware of contemporary theologians who tried “to withdraw themselves from the Sacred Teaching authority and are accordingly in danger of gradually departing from revealed truth and of drawing others along with them in error” (Humani generis).
In view of what has gone on recently in Catholic higher education, Pius XII’s warnings to Jesuits have a prophetic ring to them. He spoke then of a “proud spirit of free inquiry more proper to a heterodox mentality than to a Catholic one”; he demanded that Jesuits not “tolerate complicity with people who would draw norms for action for eternal salvation from what is actually done, rather than from what should be done.” He continued, “It should be necessary to cut off as soon as possible from the body of your Society” such “unworthy and unfaithful sons.” Pius obviously was alarmed at the rise of heterodox thinking, worldly living, and just plain disobedience in Jesuit ranks, especially at attempts to place Jesuits on a par with their Superiors in those matters which pertained to Faith or Church order (The Pope Speaks, Spring 1958, pp. 447-453). (Monsignor George A. Kelly, Ph.D.,The Catholic College: Death, Judgment, Resurrection. See also the full Latin text of Pope Pius XII's address to the thirtieth general congregation of the Society of Jesus at page 806 of the Acta Apostolicae Sedis for 1957: AAS 49 . One will have to scroll down to page 806.)
Jorge Mario Bergoglio was trained by the very sort of revolutionaries whose false moral theology was condemned by Pope Pius XII in 1957, and it is this false moral theology, which is nothing other than Judeo-Masonic moral relativism, which itself is the product of the Protestant Revolution’s theological relativism. Modernism is, of course, the synthesis of all heresies, which are designed to disrupt man's relationship to God as He has revealed Himself to us through His true Church, the Catholic Church, and thus sow the seeds of the kind of social chaos, anarchy and violence that will lead one day to the broad popular acceptance of the Antichrist when he emerges on the scene as one who will restore "order" and perhaps even make nations "great" again.
The disruptions caused by Modernity and Modernism produce conflict and violent clashes.
The true Faith is the only means to ameliorate the disruptions in the souls of men caused by the vestigial after-effects of Original Sin and to provide them with the supernatural helps necessary to help them grow in the peace that comes from their souls' abiding in a state of Sanctifying Grace.
Do not be deceived by the wiles of the adversary. The conflicts in the world and and within the counterfeit church of conciliarism are tools of the adversary to distract us from the simple truth that sin and its promotion under cover of the civil law and in every aspect of what passes for "popular culture" can never serve as the foundation of anything other than hatred and despair.
Consider these words of Pope Pius XI as found in his first encyclical letter, Ubi Arcano Dei Consilio, December 23, 1922:
Public life is so enveloped, even at the present hour, by the dense fog of mutual hatreds and grievances that it is almost impossible for the common people so much as freely to breathe therein. If the defeated nations continue to suffer most terribly, no less serious are the evils which afflict their conquerors. Small nations complain that they are being oppressed and exploited by great nations. The great powers, on their side, contend that they are being judged wrongly and circumvented by the smaller. All nations, great and small, suffer acutely from the sad effects of the late War. Neither can those nations which were neutral contend that they have escaped altogether the tremendous sufferings of the War or failed to experience its evil results almost equally with the actual belligerents. These evil results grow in volume from day to day because of the utter impossibility of finding anything like a safe remedy to cure the ills of society, and this in spite of all the efforts of politicians and statesmen whose work has come to naught if it has not unfortunately tended to aggravate the very evils they tried to overcome. Conditions have become increasingly worse because the fears of the people are being constantly played upon by the ever-present menace of new wars, likely to be more frightful and destructive than any which have preceded them. Whence it is that the nations of today live in a state of armed peace which is scarcely better than war itself, a condition which tends to exhaust national finances, to waste the flower of youth, to muddy and poison the very fountainheads of life, physical, intellectual, religious, and moral.
A much more serious and lamentable evil than these threats of external aggression is the internal discord which menaces the welfare not only of nations but of human society itself. In the first place, we must take cognizance of the war between the classes, a chronic and mortal disease of present-day society, which like a cancer is eating away the vital forces of the social fabric, labor, industry, the arts, commerce, agriculture -- everything in fact which contributes to public and private welfare and to national prosperity. This conflict seems to resist every solution and grows worse because those who are never satisfied with the amount of their wealth contend with those who hold on most tenaciously to the riches which they have already acquired, while to both classes there is common the desire to rule the other and to assume control of the other's possessions. From this class war there result frequent interruptions of work, the causes for which most often can be laid to mutual provocations. There result, too, revolutions, riots, and forcible repression of one side or other by the government, all of which cannot but end in general discontent and in grave damage to the common welfare. (Pope Pius XI, Ubi Arcano Dei Consilio, December 23, 1922.)
There is no human way out of this mess, and it is a mess, to be sure. We need the help of Our Blessed Mother, especially by means of her Most Holy Rosary, something that Pope Leo XIII pointed out in Laetitiae Sanctae, September 8, 1893:
3. For We are convinced that the Rosary, if devoutly used, is bound to benefit not only the individual but society at large.
No one will do Us the injustice to deny that in the discharge of the duties of the Supreme Apostolate We have labored -- as, God helping, We shall ever continue to labor -- to promote the civil prosperity of mankind. Repeatedly have We admonished those who are invested with sovereign power that they should neither make nor execute laws except in conformity with the equity of the Divine mind. On the other hand, we have constantly besought citizens who were conspicuous by genius, industry, family, or fortune, to join together in common counsel and action to safeguard and to promote whatever would tend to the strength and well-being of the community. Only too many causes are at work, in the present condition of things, to loosen the bonds of public order, and to withdraw the people from sound principles of life and conduct.
4. There are three influences which appear to Us to have the chief place in effecting this downgrade movement of society. These are -- first, the distaste for a simple and laborious life; secondly, repugnance to suffering of any kind; thirdly, the forgetfulness of the future life.
5. We deplore -- and those who judge of all things merely by the light and according to the standard of nature join with Us in deploring-that society is threatened with a serious danger in the growing contempt of those homely duties and virtues which make up the beauty of humble life. To this cause we may trace in the home, the readiness of children to withdraw themselves from the natural obligation of obedience to the parents, and their impatience of any form of treatment which is not of the indulgent and effeminate kind. In the workman, it evinces itself in a tendency to desert his trade, to shrink from toil, to become discontented with his lot, to fix his gaze on things that are above him, and to look forward with unthinking hopefulness to some future equalization of property. We may observe the same temper permeating the masses in the eagerness to exchange the life of the rural districts for the excitements and pleasures of the town. Thus the equilibrium between the classes of the community is being destroyed, everything becomes unsettled, men's minds become a prey to jealousy and heart-burnings, rights are openly trampled under foot, and, finally, the people, betrayed in their expectations, attack public order, and place themselves in conflict with those who are charged to maintain it.
6. For evils such as these let us seek a remedy in the Rosary, which consists in a fixed order of prayer combined with devout meditation on the life of Christ and His Blessed Mother. Here, if the joyful mysteries be but clearly brought home to the minds of the people, an object lesson of the chief virtues is placed before their eyes. Each one will thus be able to see for himself how easy, how abundant, how sweetly attractive are the lessons to be found therein for the leading of an honest life. Let us take our stand in front of that earthly and divine home of holiness, the House of Nazareth. How much we have to learn from the daily life which was led within its walls! What an all-perfect model of domestic society! Here we behold simplicity and purity of conduct, perfect agreement and unbroken harmony, mutual respect and love -- not of the false and fleeting kind -- but that which finds both its life and its charm in devotedness of service. Here is the patient industry which provides what is required for food and raiment; which does so "in the sweat of the brow," which is contented with little, and which seeks rather to diminish the number of its wants than to multiply the sources of its wealth. Better than all, we find there that supreme peace of mind and gladness of soul which never fail to accompany the possession of a tranquil conscience. These are precious examples of goodness, of modesty, of humility, of hard-working endurance, of kindness to others, of diligence in the small duties of daily life, and of other virtues, and once they have made their influence felt they gradually take root in the soul, and in course of time fail not to bring about a happy change of mind and conduct. Then will each one begin to feel his work to be no longer lowly and irksome, but grateful and lightsome, and clothed with a certain joyousness by his sense of duty in discharging it conscientiously. Then will gentler manners everywhere prevail; home-life will be loved and esteemed, and the relations of man with man will be loved and esteemed, and the relations of man with man will be hallowed by a larger infusion of respect and charity. And if this betterment should go forth from the individual to the family and to the communities, and thence to the people at large so that human life should be lifted up to this standard, no one will fail to feel how great and lasting indeed would be the gain which would be achieved for society.
7. A second evil, one which is specially pernicious, and one which, owing to the increasing mischief which it works among souls, we can never sufficiently deplore, is to be found in repugnance to suffering and eagerness to escape whatever is hard or painful to endure. The greater number are thus robbed of that peace and freedom of mind which remains the reward of those who do what is right undismayed by the perils or troubles to be met with in doing so. Rather do they dream of a chimeric civilization in which all that is unpleasant shall be removed, and all that is pleasant shall be supplied. By this passionate and unbridled desire of living a life of pleasure, the minds of men are weakened, and if they do not entirely succumb, they become demoralized and miserably cower and sink under the hardships of the battle of life.
8. In such a contest example is everything, and a powerful means of renewing our courage will undoubtedly be found in the Holy Rosary, if from our earliest years our minds have been trained to dwell upon the sorrowful mysteries of Our Lord's life, and to drink in their meaning by sweet and silent meditation. In them we shall learn how Christ, "the Author and Finisher of Our faith," began "to do and teach," in order that we might see written in His example all the lessons that He Himself had taught us for the bearing of our burden of labor -- and sorrow, and mark how the sufferings which were hardest to bear were those which He embraced with the greatest measure of generosity and good will. We behold Him overwhelmed with sadness, so that drops of blood ooze like sweat from His veins. We see Him bound like a malefactor, subjected to the judgment of the unrighteous, laden with insults, covered with shame, assailed with false accusations, torn with scourges, crowned with thorns, nailed to the cross, accounted unworthy to live, and condemned by the voice of the multitude as deserving of death. Here, too, we contemplate the grief of the most Holy Mother, whose soul was not merely wounded but "pierced" by the sword of sorrow, so that she might be named and become in truth "the Mother of Sorrows." Witnessing these examples of fortitude, not with sight but by faith, who is there who will not feel his heart grow warm with the desire of imitating them?
9. Then, be it that the "earth is accursed" and brings forth "thistles and thorns," -- be it that the soul is saddened with grief and the body with sickness; even so, there will be no evil which the envy of man or the rage of devils can invent, nor calamity which can fall upon the individual or the community, over which we shall not triumph by the patience of suffering. For this reason it has been truly said that "it belongs to the Christian to do and to endure great things," for he who deserves to be called a Christian must not shrink from following in the footsteps of Christ. But by this patience, We do not mean that empty stoicism in the enduring of pain which was the ideal of some of the philosophers of old, but rather do We mean that patience which is learned from the example of Him, who "having joy set before Him, endured the cross, despising the shame" (Heb. xvi., 2). It is the patience which is obtained by the help of His grace; which shirks not a trial because it is painful, but which accepts it and esteems it as a gain, however hard it may be to undergo. The Catholic Church has always had, and happily still has, multitudes of men and women, in every rank and condition of life, who are glorious disciples of this teaching, and who, following faithfully in the path of Christ, suffer injury and hardship for the cause of virtue and religion. They reecho, not with their lips, but with their life, the words of St. Thomas: "Let us also go, that we may die with him" (John xi., 16).
10. May such types of admirable constancy be more and more splendidly multiplied in our midst to the weal of society and to the glory and edification of the Church of God!
11. The third evil for which a remedy is needed is one which is chiefly characteristic of the times in which we live. Men in former ages, although they loved the world, and loved it far too well, did not usually aggravate their sinful attachment to the things of earth by a contempt of the things of heaven. Even the right-thinking portion of the pagan world recognized that this life was not a home but a dwelling-place, not our destination, but a stage in the journey. But men of our day, albeit they have had the advantages of Christian instruction, pursue the false goods of this world in such wise that the thought of their true Fatherland of enduring happiness is not only set aside, but, to their shame be it said, banished and entirely erased from their memory, notwithstanding the warning of St. Paul, "We have not here a lasting city, but we seek one which is to come" (Heb. xiii., 4).
12. When We seek out the causes of this forgetfulness, We are met in the first place by the fact that many allow themselves to believe that the thought of a future life goes in some way to sap the love of our country, and thus militates against the prosperity of the commonwealth. No illusion could be more foolish or hateful. Our future hope is not of a kind which so monopolizes the minds of men as to withdraw their attention from the interests of this life. Christ commands us, it is true, to seek the Kingdom of God, and in the first place, but not in such a manner as to neglect all things else. For, the use of the goods of the present life, and the righteous enjoyment which they furnish, may serve both to strengthen virtue and to reward it. The splendor and beauty of our earthly habitation, by which human society is ennobled, may mirror the splendor and beauty of our dwelling which is above. Therein we see nothing that is not worthy of the reason of man and of the wisdom of God. For the same God who is the Author of Nature is the Author of Grace, and He willed not that one should collide or conflict with the other, but that they should act in friendly alliance, so that under the leadership of both we may the more easily arrive at that immortal happiness for which we mortal men were created.
13. But men of carnal mind, who love nothing but themselves, allow their thoughts to grovel upon things of earth until they are unable to lift them to that which is higher. For, far from using the goods of time as a help towards securing those which are eternal, they lose sight altogether of the world which is to come, and sink to the lowest depths of degradation. We may doubt if God could inflict upon man a more terrible punishment than to allow him to waste his whole life in the pursuit of earthly pleasures, and in forgetfulness of the happiness which alone lasts for ever.
14. It is from this danger that they will be happily rescued, who, in the pious practice of the Rosary, are wont, by frequent and fervent prayer, to keep before their minds the glorious mysteries. These mysteries are the means by which in the soul of a Christian a most clear light is shed upon the good things, hidden to sense, but visible to faith, "which God has prepared for those who love Him." From them we learn that death is not an annihilation which ends all things, but merely a migration and passage from life to life. By them we are taught that the path to Heaven lies open to all men, and as we behold Christ ascending thither, we recall the sweet words of His promise, "I go to prepare a place for you." By them we are reminded that a time will come when "God will wipe away every tear from our eyes," and that "neither mourning, nor crying, nor sorrow, shall be any more," and that "We shall be always with the Lord," and "like to the Lord, for we shall see Him as He is," and "drink of the torrent of His delight," as "fellow-citizens of the saints," in the blessed companionship of our glorious Queen and Mother. Dwelling upon such a prospect, our hearts are kindled with desire, and we exclaim, in the words of a great saint, "How vile grows the earth when I look up to heaven!" Then, too, shall we feel the solace of the assurance "that which is at present momentary and light of our tribulation worketh for us above measure exceedingly an eternal weight of glory" (2 Cor. iv., 17).
15. Here alone we discover the true relation between time and eternity, between our life on earth and our life in heaven; and it is thus alone that are formed strong and noble characters. When such characters can be counted in large numbers, the dignity and well-being of society are assured. All that is beautiful, good, and true will flourish in the measure of its conformity to Him who is of all beauty, goodness, and truth the first Principle and the Eternal Source.
16. These considerations will explain what We have already laid down concerning the fruitful advantages which are to be derived from the use of the Rosary, and the healing power which this devotion possesses for the evils of the age and the fatal sores of society. These advantages, as we may readily conceive, will be secured in a higher and fuller measure by those who band themselves together in the sacred Confraternity of the Rosary, and who are thus more than others united by a special and brotherly bond of devotion to the Most Holy Virgin. In this Confraternity, approved by the Roman Pontiffs, and enriched by them with indulgences and privileges, they possess their own rule and government, hold their meetings at stated times, and are provided with ample means of leading a holy life and of laboring for the good of the community. They are, are so to speak, the battalions who fight the battle of Christ, armed with His Sacred Mysteries, and under the banner and guidance of the Heavenly Queen. How faithfully her intercession is exercised in response to their prayers, processions, and solemnities is written in the whole experience of the Church not less than in the splendor of the victory of Lepanto. (Pope Leo XIII, Laetitiae Sanctae, September 8, 1893.)
We must rely upon Our Lady's Most Holy Rosary to keep us spiritually fortified during these times of deception and disruption. The traps have been laid for us by the agents of Antichrist and we are bound to fall into those traps if we do not humbly rely upon Our Lady, she who is our very Life, our Sweetness and our Hope.
Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ wants us to rely upon His own Most Blessed Mother as we remain in peace during this times of agitation and conflict.
What are we waiting for?
Immaculate Heart of Mary, triumph soon!
To quote Pope Saint Pius X at the end of The Oath Against Modernism, September 1, 1910, "Pray for the Restoration to come!"
Our Lady of the Rosary, pray for us.
Saint Joseph, pray for us.
Saints Peter and Paul, pray for us.
Saint John the Baptist, pray for us.
Saint John the Evangelist, pray for us.
Saint Michael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Gabriel the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Raphael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saints Joachim and Anne, pray for us.
Saints Caspar, Melchior, and Balthasar, pray for us.