Thomas A Droleskey
The infectious spirit of the heresy of Americanism took root in the life of Catholics long before the establishment of the American hierarchy in 1790 with the Vatican ratification of the American clergy's selection of Father John Carroll as the first Bishop of Baltimore after he had served as the Prefect-Apostolic in this country. Although I am still busy trying to complete the first volume of a two-volume project that has the prospect of generating some income, something that is needed rather much at this time as the recent update to the Donations has not, quite shockingly, generated much in the way of paying what the ancients called bills, I am also continuing work on volume two of Conversion in Reverse: How the Ethos of Americanism Converted Catholics and Contributed to the Rise of Conciliarism, and it was while doing so that I reviewed material that I used to cover in my own "Living in the Shadow of the Cross" lecture programs, something that is worthwhile reviewing on this site for the infinitesimally small readership that bother to access these articles.
Catholics were but a tiny minority in the United States of America, numbering around 30,000 in 1790 according to Bishop Carroll's own estimate for the United States Census. They were spread out from the cities along the East Coast to the wilderness areas of western Pennsylvania. A Protestant spirit of independence from hierarchical authority had grown up as a result. Such a spirit of dogged independence plagued the first parish in the City of New York, Saint Peter's Church, in lower Manhattan. Robert Leckie's American and Catholic discusses the conflict that was thus engendered by lay control of parishes:
What has been called "trusteeism," a lay-clerical jurisdictional dispute peculiar to American Catholicism, seems to have begun, understandably enough, among the turbulent Irish of New York City. Probably through contact with Protestantism, and certainly assisted by the encouragement of non-Catholics who were delighted to discomfit the ancient creed, the lay faithful there came to the conclusion that they had the right to hire and fire their pastors and that the Prefect-Apostolic had no right to interfere with them.
In 1784, after the New York legislature had repeated the state's antipriest laws, the Catholics there sent to Ireland at their own expense for a clergyman. The man who came over was Charles Maurice Whelan, a Franciscan who had served as a chaplain with the French fleet during the Revolution and been captured by the British at Jamaica. He arrived before Father Carroll was made Prefect-Apostolic, and without faculties, but he nevertheless began to administer the sacraments. After Carroll received the power to impart faculties, he granted them to Whelan, albeit reluctantly, his misgivings over the friar's disregard for procedure being overcome by his anxiety to provide New York with a priest. Next, the same faithful who had sent for Whelan on their own incorporated themselves as the "Trustees of the Roman Catholic Church in the City of New York," bought land and began building a church.
Soon the congregation of St. Peter's, as it was to be called, became disengaged with Father Whelan. Although a pious man, he was a blunt one who did not look with equanimity on any vice, even drink. Moreover, he was a poor preacher who fell far short of the standard of Irish eloquence. So Father Whelan was persuaded to send to Ireland for the instrument of his own destruction: a fellow friar and a preacher of renown, Father Andrew Nugent. Immediately, the two friars fell out and the congregation divided into rival camps. Eventually, Nugent gained the support of the trustees, Whelan was ousted and Father Carroll was asked to confirm Nugent in his place. Evidently, the trustees thought that, like many of the Protestant churches around them, they possessed the right the appoint to the pastoral office. Carroll tried to explain to them that they did not, that this episcopal power was held by himself alone, also pointing out that there was yet as not office of parish priest in the United States. Finding his efforts unavailing, in October, 1787, Carroll went to New York to take personal charge of the situation.
While he was in the sacristy vesting for Mass, Father Nugent went into the pulpit to denounce him. Carroll suspended him on the spot, but Nugent said Mass in defiance of his authority. Now the trustees sided with Father Carroll and locked the church doors in an effort to keep the Nugent faction out. to the horror of the Prefect-Apostolic, Nugent's aroused followers broke down the door and not only prevented Carroll from saying Mass but forced him to take refuge in the home of the Spanish minister.
Because New York was then the capital of the United States, the event was given wide publicity, causing great embarrassment among the Catholics. Many of the Protestant onlookers who had followed the wild-eyed Nugentites into the church were delighted to interpret the clash as a collision between the spirit of American democracy and popish autocracy. Scandalized, Father Carroll attempted to say Mass the following Sunday, and was again put to flight by the Nugent faction. Finding no other recourse, he took the case to court, where the trustees were upheld and Nugent was himself ousted. With that, Carroll placed William O'Brien, an Irish Dominican, in charge of St. Peter's.
Trusteeism, however, was far from dead. Too many factors in American society tended to give it a long and flourishing life. First, Catholics in America had lived so long without episcopal rule that they had no idea what the Church's ecclesiastical government was like. Second, the Protestants around them placed strong emphasis on lay administration, and the civil laws of the various states favored lay ownership of ecclesiastical property. Seeing how their Protestant neighbors organized their churches and appointed or removed pastors, it was probably inevitable that some Catholics should wish to do the same. Thus, when the Prefect-Apostolic returned from his unpleasant experiences in New York, he can hardly have been surprised to find that the normally peaceable Germans in Philadelphia were demanding a church of their own.
From the beginning the Germans at St. Mary's Church had resented being ministered to by English-speaking priests, and had complained that they complained that they were being shorted in such things as pew allotments and cemetery space. To mollify them, the pastor of St. Mary's had invited Father Lawrence Graessl of Bavaria to come to Philadelphia. Unknown to Carroll, the Germans had themselves advertised for priests in German newspapers. Two brothers, the Franciscan priests John and Peter Heilbron, answered the appeal and came to the United States, landing in Philadelphia in October, 1787, the same month in which Father Graessl arrived. Immediately, the Heilbrons won over most of the Germans at St. Mary's Church, inflaming their already considerable desires for a church organized on nationalist lines. Next, in 1788, the Germans bought a lot and asked Carroll for permission to build Holy Trinity Church. It was then that the Prefect-Apostolic, having only just emerged from the New York fiasco, decided to grant their request rather than provoke a repetition of the scandals of trusteeism in Philadelphia.
In fact, though, his decision only guaranteed such unrest. The trustees preferred the Heilbron brothers to Father Graessl, and they elected Father John Heilbron a their pastor, asking the Prefect-Apostolic to approve their choice. He refused. Even so, Father Heilbron presided at dedication ceremonies for Holy Trinity Church, and in the ensuing squabble between the Heilbron-trustee faction and Father Carroll supporting Father Graessl, the parish went into the dispute boiled over to engulf those volatile Irish spirits at St. Mary's, where three rebellious Irish-born priests joined the lay trustees in open war against ecclesiastical authority. Although the Heilbrons made their submission to to Carroll in 1790, a full generation was to pass before the church in Philadelphia was free of trustee troubles. (Robert Leckie, American and Catholic, Doubleday and Company, 1970, pp. 68-70.)
Just a matter of the past, right? All right, all right. Perhaps it has some pertinence to the state of many traditional chapels, including non-sedevacantist "independent" chapels (places where I have personally witnessed donnybrooks galore and the rehashing of old battles in public meetings from twenty years before, indicating that those old battles had never been resolved even as votes were taken on various matters) and in sedevacantist chapels. Human nature is it is, and the absence of a true hierarchy makes it all the more possible for the spirit of trusteeism to run amok in our own day.
The spirit of Protestantism, which is the spirit of individualism and anti-clericalism, runs deep in the veins of American Catholics. Indeed, the late Mr. Leckie, whose own historical accounts of the Catholic Church in the United States of America undermined his very editorial praise in behalf of the "American Way," believed that the election of John Carroll as the first Bishop of Baltimore by his clergy represented "progress" in the incorporation of the American commitment to elections as part of life of Catholics in this country even though Carroll's election was by special permission granted by Pope Pius VI. Leckie believed that even though Carroll's election took place by means of special indult from the Holy Father himself that it nevertheless signified the influence of the American spirit in the "American" church:
Nevertheless, at the very inception of a government for the American Church, the American way had prevailed. Equally significant, the new Church had been born in the same year  in which George Washington took his oath as the first President of the United States. Both infant church and young republic had been through the stormy formative decade of the eighties together, and the one was now putting out like a rowboat from the Bark of Peter, the other sail for destiny in the magnificent vessel of its new Constitution. Both were in the hands of splendid captains, and in fact, Washington and Carroll were so similar in character that they might have come from the same deep reverence for their native land and the American style. In his inaugural address, Washington could speak movingly of a "reverence the characteristic rights of freedom," and John Carroll before his consecration also could salute the new day of civil and religious liberty with the remark: ". . . America may come to exhibit a proof to the world. that general and equal toleration. by giving a free circulation to fair argument, is the most effectual bring all denominations of Christians to a unity of faith." (Robert Leckie, American and Catholic, Doubleday and Company, 1970, pp. 71-72.)
This is a remarkable exercise in contradiction. Leckie criticized trusteeism while praising the very American spirit that had brought it about from the beginning. It is precisely the spirit of the Constitution of the United States of America and the "civil and religious liberty" enshrined therein that has placed the conciliar "bishops" of today in the clutches of the likes of Barack Hussein Obama (see Bound To Come To This Point, Ominous Offenders Offending Ominously, Memo To David Axelrod And Other Social Engineers, John Carroll's Caesar, Victims of Compromise, Taking A Figure Of Antichrist At His Worthless Words and Move Along, Nothing To See, Just Another Apostate).
There were, of course, lay administrators to be found in various places during the era of Christendom in the Middle Ages. These administrators worked in conjunction with, not in opposition to, the local bishop and, noting some exceptions here and there, were restrained from interfering in the spiritual life of a parish. These lay administrators were informed by the hierarchial spirit of Catholicism, not by the anticlerical spirit of American individualism that is so much a part of the Americanist heresy, an issue of the converge of the errors of Protestantism and Judeo-Masonry. A desire for independence and to resist legitimate authority exercised lawfully has been part of the American fabric from the very beginning, which is why there was such hostility on the part of Protestants in the United States of America as they knew that it was a hierarchical religion that was antithetical to the Protestant and hence American spirit of "individualism" and false liberty.
Sure, it is very difficult in the current state of apostasy and betrayal for parishes that exist in the Catholic underground to function without establishing lay boards to fulfill the dictates of civil law for the protection of the parish's property. Indeed, the civil law governing the chartering of corporations in the fifty states in the United States of America require the establishment of boards of directors or boards of trustees and the adoption of bylaws by which the appointment or election of those who serve on such boards are to to be made.
To wit, each Catholic parish is erected as its own corporation in most instances. The diocesan bishop is the ex officio head of most of these parish corporations. Other diocesan officials might serve on the board as well in addition to those who come from the parish (conciliarism's own mania for "lay participation" usually requires some degree of lay representation and/or oversight, depending upon the civil jurisdiction and the dictates of the conciliar "code of canon law," in parishes that were once and someday in the future will be authentically Catholic).
Variations of this occur when property is owned by a religious community. And even in situations that exist today in our underground chapels when a chapel and its property might be owned outright by a religious community or individual priests, there is still the civil legal requirement in most instances to have a board of directors or trustees. Obviously, that any of this is deemed necessary by the civil law is the result of the Catholic Church not being recognized as the true religion whose functioning cannot be interfered with by the powers of the civil state unless serious crimes have been committed (and even then the parameters of what the civil state could do to punish ecclesiastical malfeasance would have to be outlined, at least in general terms, in a Concordat with the Holy See).
The Plenary Council of Baltimore, which met in 1884, itself laid down the outlines for the establishment of parameters of lay trustees:
Title ix, Of Church Property.-(i) The Church's right to hold property. (ii) The bishop is the guardian and supreme administrator of all diocesan property. (iii) Priests are diligently to guard parochial property under the direction of the bishop. If they do not request their salary at the proper time, they are supposed to have renounced their right to it. (iv) In choosing lay trustees only those members of the congregation have a voice, who, being twenty-one years of age, have fulfilled the paschal precept, have paid for a seat in the church during the past year, have sent their children to Catholic schools and belong to no prohibited society. The pastor is ex officio president of the board of trustees. (v) In all churches some seats must be set aside for the poor. Abuses incident to picnics, excursions, and fairs are to be guarded against. Balls are not to be given for religious purposes. It is a detestable abuse to refuse the sacraments to those who will not contribute to collections. Bishops are to determine the stipend proper for ecclesiastical ministries. Foreign priests or religious cannot solicit alms in a diocese without the consent of the ordinary. (Plenary Councils of Baltimore.)
Thus, even though we do not have diocesan ordinaries in this time of apostasy and betrayal, we do have priests. And our underground bishops and priests are, ex officio, supposed to be the president of any such board of trustees that must be created to comply with the dictates of civil law. A priest, however, is never to be made the hireling of any lay board. He must have at least some say in the temporal affairs of the parish even as an understandable need to fulfill the dictates of civil law are observed, keeping in view that it has never been the mind of Holy Mother Church that a priest is to be the hireling of lay board. A priest is an alter Christus. Our Lord, Christ the King, is not for "sale" and He is not to be "dismissed," absent serious charges of moral or financial misconduct, because of the predilections of a lay board.
Even though some lay boards were established in the Nineteenth Century to seek to lift the administrative burdens of running a parish from a priest who might have to travel on horseback to various mission locations and thus did not have the time to attend to such details properly, there is nevertheless always the danger caused by fallen human nature of creating a de facto lay hierarchy in opposition to the primacy of the clerics over the laity in a parish. Although Robert Leckie and other authors provided many more examples than ones given in the passage above from Leckie's book, suffice it to say that examples abound historically here in the United States of America of an anticlerical spirit of lay supremacy over the clergy caused by lay boards. This is simply not Catholic.
It is no wonder that some older priests who do indeed accept the true state of the Church at this time simply offer Mass in their own homes without any public advertising while a few offer Mass in chapels open to the public as they demur from any attention being drawn to them. Some of these men have told me that they are content to call down graces from Heaven without being chewed up by lay boards and getting involved in endless conflicts engendered thereby. Who can blame them?
One of those who fought in the late-Eighteenth and early-Nineteenth Centuries against this American spirit of individualism that gave rise to the sort of trustees in the United States of America who were of a different species than the lay administrators found in Catholic Europe during the Middle Ages (and even in Apostolic times) was Father Demetrius Gallitzin, the son of a Russian diplomat, a prince who was the Russian ambassador to The Netherlands at the time of his birth on December 22, 1770), in Loretto, Pennsylvania, deep in the woods of the Allegheny Mountains in western Pennsylvania. Father Gallitzin had wanted to get away from the influences of Americanism in the Maryland parishes where he had served following his ordination in 1795, being particularly disturbed by trusteeism and by Bishop John Carroll's refusal to end this notorious practice. Father Gallitzin, known publicly for the first fourteen years of his priesthood as Father Augustine Smith, wanted to create a settlement of Catholics far from what he considered to be (and rightly so) the influences of the evils of Protestant America.
As is recorded in a wonderful book, The Voice That Shook Windows: A Story of Prince-Father Gallitzin, by Brother Bernard Donahue, C.S.C.:
The settlement where he intended to move was then called Clearfield, though its name was later changed to Loretto. It was located in western Pennsylvania, high among the peaks of the Allegheny Mountain range. There were very few people living there at the time, but Demetrius intended to attract as many other Catholics there as he could. Eventually, he hoped to have a fairly good-sized Catholic town far from the evil influence of Protestant America. (Brother Bernard Donahue, C.S.C., The Voice That Shook Windows: A Story of Prince-Father Gallitzin. Notre Dame, Indiana: Dujarie Press, 1961, p. 46.)
Among those evil influences, of course, was the sense of religious indifferentism that had convinced most of the small number of Catholics who were living in the nascent United States of America to be "content" with living side-by-side with their Protestant neighbors without seeking the conversion of the nation, believing that it was neither necessary nor desirable to seek the conversion of the new country to the Catholic Faith. It was "enough" to breathe the air of a "liberty" that made possible the dissemination of one blasphemous falsehood after another under the cover of civil law. Most, although not all, Catholics who were living in the United States of America at the end of the Eighteenth and the beginning of the Nineteenth Centuries were content to be about the "business of life" without considering that what were considered to be mere "doctrinal differences" with Protestants did not have any relevance at all to the common temporal good of the new nation.
It was thus in 1799 that Father Gallitzin established the first Catholic settlement in western Pennsylvania. Those who settled there were at first very grateful and very loyal to Father Gallitzin, who ruled as a true pastor of souls and was never afraid to maintain order within the walls of the Church of Saint Michael the Archangel. The American spirit being what it is, however, Father Gallitzin eventually ran afoul of some of his own parishioners as the evils of Americanism caught up with the Catholics in his settlement in Loretto, Pennsylvania. One of the factors that caused a good deal of parish division among the parishioners of the Church of Saint Michael the Archangel--and to cause some of them to view their own formerly beloved pastor with suspicion, if not actual disdain and contempt--was that partisans of the two major political parties at the time, the Federalists and the Democratic-Republicans, had discovered that there were voters in western Pennsylvania who had to be milked for their "votes."
Yes, the fraud of American electoral politics has been, admitting some exceptions here and there, principally about the pursuit of raw political power as an ultimate end that justifies any and all means necessary to acquire and retain such power. The American mania for "voting" as the means to "better living" infected Catholics to such an extent that they believed that voting on matters in parishes was, of course, just part of the way things should be here in the "free" United States of America.
Pope Pius XI, writing in Ubi Arcano Dei Consilio, December 22, 1923, explained in a general way that contests between political parties did indeed revolve mostly around the pursuit of raw political power:
To these evils we must add the contests between political parties, many of which struggles do not originate in a real difference of opinion concerning the public good or in a laudable and disinterested search for what would best promote the common welfare, but in the desire for power and for the protection of some private interest which inevitably result in injury to the citizens as a whole. From this course there often arise robberies of what belongs rightly to the people, and even conspiracies against and attacks on the supreme authority of the state, as well as on its representatives. These political struggles also beget threats of popular action and, at times, eventuate in open rebellion and other disorders which are all the more deplorable and harmful since they come from a public to whom it has been given, in our modern democratic states, to participate in very large measure in public life and in the affairs of government. Now, these different forms of government are not of themselves contrary to the principles of the Catholic Faith, which can easily be reconciled with any reasonable and just system of government. Such governments, however, are the most exposed to the danger of being overthrown by one faction or another.
Eager to mine for votes in western Pennsylvania, agents of the Federalists and Democratic-Republicans fanned out into the wilderness to look for votes, helping to roil the waters so unnecessarily in the parish of Saint Michael the Archangel in Loretto, Pennsylvania, thereby fueling tensions and suspicions and recriminations as to which set of anti-Incarnational naturalists was better suited to run a country founded on false, naturalistic, religiously indifferentist, anti-Incarnational and semi-Pelagian (the belief that men are more or less self-redemptive and can solve whatever problems come up in their lives as they stir up graces in their own souls) principles:
But no sooner had he [Father Gallitzin] renounced the opportunity to return to Europe [to claim his late father's inheritance] than he found new troubles at home. He had sacrificed a great deal to remain with his little flock, but now he found that some of them did not want him. High tensions had developed in Loretto, and the smoking hostilities were threatening to break out into flaming frontier violence.
Part of the trouble in Loretta arose from the birth of politics in the region and part from the favorite American occupation of land speculation.
When Demetrius [Father Gallitzin] had first moved out to western Pennsylvania, no one in that region paid any particular attention to the government of the country. It was simply too far away to interest them. With the rapid increase in the population, however, and with appeals being made for their votes by both parties in Pennsylvania, the inhabitants of Loretto, especially the Irish, began to take an interest.
There were in the United States at that time two major parties. They were the Federalists, who followed Alexander Hamilton and John Adams; and the Democratic Republicans, whose leader was Thomas Jefferson [see A Founding Hatred for Christ the King]. In general the Federalists were largely the wealthier business classes who had settled in the cities on the eastern sea coast. The Democratic Republicans were for the most part in favor of the small independent farmers, at least in the more northern states.
It was only natural for most of the people in Loretto should support Thomas Jefferson in his battle against the rich aristocrats of the East, whether they understood the issues or not. It was also quite natural that the priest who had been a Russian price should support the Federalists. Demetrius had heard enough about mob rule from reports coming from the French Revolution. Though he preferred the poor to the rich as parishioners, he had no faith in their ability to rule themselves. Unlike most Protestant ministers, he did not oppose Jefferson because of his religion of lack of it. It was very much like his father's. But he did object to many of his political beliefs, and, more especially, to those of his followers in Pennsylvania.
Although Demetrius did not actively campaign for the Federalists, he was strongly criticized behind his back. Some said he favored rule by the rich only, and others went so far as to say that he was working to help establish a monarchy in this country just like Russia's.
Naturally, that sort of talk lasted only during the excitement over the election and probably would have been forgotten altogether had not another quarrel broken out which led to a real struggle for power in the region. (Brother Bernard Donahue, C.S.C., The Voice That Shook Windows: A Story of Prince-Father Gallitzin. Notre Dame, Indiana: Dujarie Press, 1961, pp. 60-62.)
Much like competitive sports, partisan politics in a world where the Social Reign of Christ the King has been overthrow has resulted in needless divisions and strife and conflicts over personalities and non-issues that would never be "on the table" for discussion in a Catholic country. There would be no need, for example, to discuss "health care" in a nation constituted under Catholic principles as those who in need would be taken care of by their family members and/or by genuinely Catholic hospitals, which would be staffed exclusively by believing Catholics who cared about performing the Spiritual and Corporal Works of Mercy as they attended to the bodily welfare of their patients. Most of the "issues" that arise in our own day are the direct result of the overthrow of the Social Reign of Christ the King wrought by the Protestant Revolt and the subsequent rise of naturalistic philosophies and ideologies, aided and abetted by the organized networks associated with Judeo-Masonry.
The divisions engendered by partisan politics roils families and parishes to this very day. Father Gallitzin's parish in the early Nineteenth Century was no exception to these divisions, which were exacerbated in his case by a greedy land speculator who wanted Father Gallitzin. out of the way:
Some time earlier, Demetrius had befriend a man named E. V. James, a Catholic who had originally come from England. James settled in Loretto. He was a Catholic, but his chief interest in life seemed to be making money. It did not take him long to realize that, although the land was fertile around Loretto, one would never get rich there. It was situated several miles from the new highway that was running across the state, and it would always be just a little farm town. Demetrius had actually wanted it that way. The farther from civilization the better as far as he was concerned.
James had other ideas. The thing to do, he thought, would be to buy up a large plot of farm land several miles away in the path of the new highway. He could star his own town there and sell small plots of land for houses at a great profit.
Having decided on his plan, he went to work at once. He had Father Gallitzin's approval for the new settlement, since the priest thought that the settlers in the new town would be newcomers from the East. The land was purchased and divided into smaller plots. James was able to sell quite a bit of them, and the little town of Munster soon sprang up. Once a little group had gathered there, however, it seemed that no one else wanted to move in. It just stopped growing.
James now had a serious problem. He had bought the land with borrowed money, gambling that the land would soon become very valuable, and he would make a large profit. He soon found that settlement b outsiders was going to be much too slow for that. The only other thing he could do was to lure people away from Father Gallitzin to Loretto. That meant war.
Demetrius now attacked the new settlement ferociously. He even went so far as to pay for and furnish the transportation of a man in Munster who wanted to move back to Loretto.
James had not been prepared for this new opposition, but he was a man used to getting his own way, and he was not too concerned about how he got it. He decided that the thing to do would be to arouse the people of Loretto against their pastor. If they got angry enough, they would either drive him out or move to Munster.
Some of the people in Loretto were not too hard to arouse. There were still some rumblings about the pastor's Federalist leanings in politics. There was also opposition to the way he was running the church. There he insisted on being a complete dictator. To make sure there would never be any pew rent in his church, Demetrius had refused to put any pews in. The men always had to sit on one side of the church and the women on the other. The children were placed up in front near the altar so that Demetrius could keep an eye on them.
Although he was very kind in the confessional, his sermons were often violent attacks on evils he saw in the parish. Many individuals felt that they aimed directly at them, though no names were mentioned, and they resented it bitterly.
Then too there was the problem of school-teachers. Demetrius had arranged for several of the daughters of families in the parish to teach the younger children. It was not long before some people got the idea that he intended to organize them into a community of nuns. Nuns might be all right for Europe, they thought, but there was a shortage of women on the frontier to be wives and mothers. Demetrius never openly said that he intended to start a community of nuns, though he may have had the idea in the back of his head. The important thing was that people thought he might, and there was bitter opposition to the idea, especially from the families of the girls.
Soon open rebellion broke out. Demetrius preached such a strong sermon against James, that he refused to come to church again. The priest knew that he had gone a little too far, so the following Sunday he apologized. It did no good, however. Threats were hurled against the priest, and it was not long before he was making his missionary journeys with a very large pistol strapped to his leg.
Word of the quarrel soon reached Bishop Carroll from both groups. James and his followers signed a petition asking that Father Gallitzin be removed. Those loyal to Demetrius signed a much larger petition begging that he remain. The result was that, after some investigation, the bishop sent a letter which was nailed to the front door of the church. He completely backed up Demetrius and urged the parishioners to obey their pastor.
At the very peak of the quarrel, Demetrius received a letter from the bishop telling him that his mother had died. It seemed that Almighty God was piling one sorrow on top of another. He had given up his title of nobility, his inheritance, his native land, almost everything for these ungrateful people. Now even the little he had left, the love and comfort of his mother, had been taken from him. Although they had not understood each other very well when they were together, the princess had spent the last years of her life working and praying for Demetrius's mission in Pennsylvania.
To the credit of his opponents, it must be said that they stopped bothering him for a time after his mother's death. In fact, they even contributed to a fund which reached forty dollars to have Masses said for the repose of her soul.
Then the battle was renewed, but not for very long. It was becoming more and more evident to the people of Loretto what sort of men these were who were attacking Demetrius. The scandals they spread about him behind his back were such obvious lies that soon everyone in the country, including the Protestants, were rallying to his side. The conspirators decided to try the law courts. The nearest of these was far enough away that Father Gallitzin was not known there. They assumed that no one would know whether they were telling the truth or not.
Once again, however, Demetrius was the winner. This time the opposition's back was broken. The ringleader of the whole plot, E. V. James, wrote a public letter to his pastor confessing his crimes and asking pardon, and most of his followers soon followed his example.
There was one group of die-hards, however, who would not make peace. Since they now knew they could not win the fight, the only thing to do was take revenge on the man who had defeated them.
One day they surrounded him as he stood in front of the church and prepared to take their revenge in frontier style. Demetrius had long since stopped wearing his gun, so he was defenceless.
Just at that moment, however, big John Weakland, always a strong supporter of Father Gallitzin, happened to be coming by. It was said of John that he had once fought a bear, with only his bare hands, for four hours and had won. He was also supposed to have caught a wolf and gagged it with his bare hands. When he saw what was going to happen to Father Gallitzin, he picked up a rail from a fence with those same bare hands and walked slowly toward the group.
In a second he and Father Gallitzin were left alone in a cloud of dust, as the priest's enemies scattered this way and that. Nor did they ever bother him again. The rebellion was over. (Brother Bernard Donahue, C.S.C., The Voice That Shook Windows: A Story of Prince-Father Gallitzin. Notre Dame, Indiana: Dujarie Press, 1961, pp. 63-72. For another interesting story about the incredible pastoral work of Father Gallitizin, please go to http://olrl.org/stories/wizclip.shtml.)
And we think we have seen parish problems in our own days? Imagine if E. V. James had e-mail and access to a chat room! The dispute would still be going on to this very day. Followers of E. V. James to this day would be taking up the standard of American revolt against the long dead Father Demetrius Gallitzin in one chat room after another. A putative latter day polemicist in this matter might write something along the lines of, "I knew that man Gallitzin was no good. He didn't like the 'American' way of doing things." Some defender of conciliarism might condemn Father Gallitzin for differing with Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI, who rejects the "ecumenism of the return" that Father Gallitzin preached about with great fervor.
Yes, the vestigial after-effects of Original Sin and our own Actual Sins impel us frequently to act in ways quite contrary to the Faith, becoming convinced that our "righteousness" supersedes the demands of Charity as we seek to pursue a sense of justice that is actually raw vengeance accompanied by actual revulsion for our fellow men, including our shepherds.
Much as was the case with Anne Katherine Emmerich, whose prophetic writings about the counterfeit church that has arisen in the past fifty years were dismissed as either irrelevant or as forgeries, the conciliar Vatican is proceeding with the cause of Father Demetrius Gallitzin for conciliar "beatification" despite his writings that are the antithesis of conciliarism's false ecumenism.
Consider the following excerpt from one of his articles (the hyperlinks will take you to a website that exists to promote Father Gallitzin's cause in the structures of the counterfeit church of conciliarism). One will note that Father Gallitzin wrote as Catholics had always written and spoken prior to the dawning of the age of conciliarism in 1958 with the "election" of Angelo Roncalli/John XXIII. The contrast with Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI, who rejects the "ecumenism of the return" and who views the Protestants and the Orthodox as "part" of the "Church of Christ" (see
Ratzinger's War Against Catholicism), could not be more clear:
The following "LETTER TO A PROTESTANT FRIEND," I give to the public at the request of some respectable friends, who are of opinion that it may be of benefit to other Protestants besides the one to whom it is directed. In my "ADDRESS TO THE PROTESTANT PUBLIC," I have stated my reasons for not addressing the Protestant minister any more. His ungentlemanly language, together with the many falsehoods he advances in order to expose the Catholic cause to the hatred and contempt of the public, plainly shew that he is not actuated by motives of charity and that he is blinded by passion, and of course, not open to conviction. However, truth compels me to acknowledge, that I am nevertheless, indebted to him for affording me a considerable degree of assistance in converting Protestants to the Catholic faith. His "VINDICATION OF THE DOCTRINES OF THE REFORMATION," gave the finishing stroke to several of them, who after reading Catholic principles in Catholic books, were very curious to know what arguments Protestant writers could have to oppose to those principles. They read the "Vindication" with the greatest attention, and read it again: what was the result? They came to me, and prayed to be admitted members of the Catholic church. On the first Sunday of October (after having made their sacramental confession) six of them made their public profession of Catholic faith, before the altar at St. Michael's church of Loretto, according to the rites and ceremonies prescribed by the Roman ritual, renouncing their errors, and promising before God and the congregation, to live and die in the Roman Catholic Church. Since that time several more Protestants have applied to me, and testified an eager desire to become members of the holy Catholic Church of Christ. If I had any favour to ask of the Protestant minister, it would be that he would please continue to write against the Catholic church, and to vindicate the doctrines of the reformation. I promise to make a good use of his writings, and to draw from them a great deal of useful information, for the conversion of all sorts of Protestants to the Catholic faith.
There are some precious acknowledgments made by the Protestant minister in his "Vindication of the Doctrines of the Reformation," which should be very sufficient to open the eyes of Protestants to the imminent danger they are exposed to whilst living in a state of separation from the holy Catholic church of Christ. I shall only notice two of those acknowledgments.
1st. (page 13,) He tells us plainly that no such a thing as INFALLIBILITY was ever intended by Jesus Christ be given to the church; in other words, it was never intended by Jesus Christ, that we should know to a certainty, whether we believe right or wrong for the mysteries of revelation are so transcendently above the reach of the human understanding, that none but a divine infallible guide can possibly prevent our going astray in investigating those profound mysteries, or give us a certainty that we do not misunderstand the words or mistake the sense of our blessed Saviour.
Protestants! here is plain acknowledgment made by one of your ministers, and I dare say, confirmed by the whole of them, that the church or churches you and they belong to, are not infallible. Pause a little, if you value your souls, and meditate seriously on the consequences of that acknowledgment. It appears then, that your believing right or wrong is left to chance, that your ministers can give you no security that they deliver unto you the true interpretation of the word of God, or the sense of the Holy Ghost; and that you shall never know to a certainty whether you believe right or wrong until you find yourselves before the judgment of him who has declared that "he who believes not shall be condemned." Mark, xvi.16.
2d. (page 117.) "Speaking of the divisions in the Protestant communions, he acknowledges that there is "A CRIMINAL SCHISM SOMEWHERE" among them. Protestants! read the words of St. Paul, Ephes. v. 25, 26, 27, and you will find that the church is the spouse of Christ, as holy as Christ could make it, and far from having in its bosom a criminal schism SOMEWHERE , has not even the least blemish any where.
From your minister's own acknowledgment, the Protestant church, then, is not the church of Christ; and from his own acknowledgment, he knows THERE IS A CRIMINAL SCHISM SOMEWHERE , but he is not able to tell where it is. Protestants if you wish to know where it is, read the "Defence of Catholic Principles," and read the following "Letter to a Protestant Friend," and you will find that the whole reformation is a criminal schism, or a separation from the only true Catholic church of Jesus Christ, which (although having many wicked members, both among clergymen and laymen, yet) was always ITSELF holy, immaculate, and infallible in its faith and moral doctrine.
The acknowledgments made by your Protestant minister give the reformation a mortal stab. They give rise to very serious reflections; reflections that have opened the eyes of many, and have caused Protestant ministers in New York and elsewhere, to forsake the pretended reformation, and to join the Catholic church.
Protestants! as long as I live I shall consider it my duty to try to undeceive you; to remove the prejudices in which you have been raised; to counteract the schemes by which the ministers of the pretended reformation have ever tried to render the Catholic Church odious and ridiculous. I shall never cease calling upon you in the name of your and of my Saviour, to forsake the criminal schism in which you live, and to return to the pale of the Catholic church, from which your ancestors departed. (Gallitzin, Demetrius A. 1819. On the Holy Scriptures or the Written Word of God).
Father Gallitzin's Defence of Catholic Principles in A Letter to A Protestant Minister was a rebuke not only to a Protestant minister in his own day, but also to those in our own day who attempt to defend the nonexistent "legitimacy" of Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI by contending that not all of the teaching given us by true popes is protected by the charism of infallibility, thereby conceding the belief of Protestants that the Catholic Church can give us errors:
If the church could possibly teach damnable errors, then the gates of hell could prevail against her, contrary to the above promise. "Go ye therefore and teach all nations -- baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost --teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world" -- Matt. xxviii, 19, 20. Christ addressing his twelve apostles on the present occasion, evidently speaks to all his ministers, successors of the apostles to the end of time; which sound logic will find correct. Christ promises that he himself will be with his apostles, baptizing, preaching and teaching all nations until the consummation of time: now Christ cannot tell a lie; therefore it is evident that Christ has fulfilled his promise; and that during these 1815 years past, Christ has always been with his ministers, the pastors of the holy catholic church, and that he will continue to be with them to the end of time; and that he will accompany and guide them, when they preach his word and administer his sacraments.
"And I will ask the Father, and he shall give you another paraclete, that he may abide with you forever, the spirit of truth" -- John xiv, 16, 17. It appears that Christ asked his heavenly Father to bless his ministers, the pastors of his church, with the spirit of truth forever: Pray sir, did Christ offer up any prayer in vain? And if his prayer was heard, how could the pastors of the church ever preach false doctrine?
"But when he, the spirit of truth, shall come, he will teach you all truth," John xvi, 13; "the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth," 1 Tim. iii, 15. If the church itself, as it comes out of the hands of God, is the very ground and pillar of truth, it will hardly want the reforming hand of corrupted man to put it right; it will always teach the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth; and instead of attempting to reform this the most precious of all the works and institutions of God, you and I must be reformed by it. To quote all the texts that prove the holy church of Jesus Christ to be infallible, or invested by Christ with a supreme and unerring authority in matters of faith, would be endless. I said this unerring authority even in the dictates of common sense. Yes, sir; common sense tells us that the works of God are perfect in their kind. Now the church being most emphatically the work of God, it most assuredly must be perfect: the church however, must be very imperfect indeed, if it wants the main perfection, which as our guide and director to Heaven it must have, that of always teaching truth, that of always supplying the wants of our limited and corrupted reason, that of always carrying before our eyes the bright and divine light of revelation.
Shew us a church which is not infallible, which owns itself fallible, wanting of course the main perfection which the church of Christ must have, and you shew us a church of corrupted man, not the church of Christ. Common sense tell us, that, without an infallible tribunal, unanimity in faith is a thing impossible. Without a centre unity, a fixed standard, and absolute and infallible tribunal, a living oracle to determine the mind, it is absolutely impossible, that men framed as they are, should ever come to one and the same way of thinking. Whoever renounces this infallible authority of the church, has no longer any sure means to secure him against uncertainties, and to settle his doubts: he is in a sad and perplexed situation, tossed to and fro by every wind of doctrine.
We are confirmed in the above suggestions of common sense, by our observation. Unity in faith we find no where but in the catholic church. Above a hundred millions of catholics, scattered over the face of the earth, are perfectly once in matters of faith, -- We meet from the most distant parts of the globe, ignorant of one another’s language, manners, customs, &c. yet our thoughts and principles about religious and its mysteries are exactly alike. Pray, sir, is that unity to be found among those who have shaken off the authority of the church? Since they have presumed to reform (as they call it) the catholic church, what do we see but one reformation or another -- hundreds and hundreds of different churches, one rising on the ruins of another, all widely differing from one another; each styling itself the church of Christ; each appealing to the gospel for the orthodoxy of her doctrine; each calling her ministers, ministers of Christ; each calling the sermons of her ministers, the word of God, &c. &c. (Gallitzin, Demetrius A. 1816. Defence of Catholic Principles in A Letter to A Protestant Minister.)
Consider, once again, this sentence from Defense of Catholic Principles in a Letter to A Protestant Minister:
And if his prayer was heard, how could the pastors of the church ever preach false doctrine?
Only the wilfully deluded or those steeped in rank intellectual dishonesty can say that Joseph Ratzinger has never preached any false doctrine.
As Pope Leo XIII noted in Satis Cognitum, June 29, 1896, no one who knowingly preaches any doctrine that has been condemned by the authority of the Catholic Church can remain in good standing as a member of the Catholic Church:
The Church, founded on these principles and mindful of her office, has done nothing with greater zeal and endeavour than she has displayed in guarding the integrity of the faith. Hence she regarded as rebels and expelled from the ranks of her children all who held beliefs on any point of doctrine different from her own. The Arians, the Montanists, the Novatians, the Quartodecimans, the Eutychians, did not certainly reject all Catholic doctrine: they abandoned only a certain portion of it. Still who does not know that they were declared heretics and banished from the bosom of the Church? In like manner were condemned all authors of heretical tenets who followed them in subsequent ages. "There can be nothing more dangerous than those heretics who admit nearly the whole cycle of doctrine, and yet by one word, as with a drop of poison, infect the real and simple faith taught by our Lord and handed down by Apostolic tradition" (Auctor Tract. de Fide Orthodoxa contra Arianos).
The practice of the Church has always been the same, as is shown by the unanimous teaching of the Fathers, who were wont to hold as outside Catholic communion, and alien to the Church, whoever would recede in the least degree from any point of doctrine proposed by her authoritative Magisterium. Epiphanius, Augustine, Theodore :, drew up a long list of the heresies of their times. St. Augustine notes that other heresies may spring up, to a single one of which, should any one give his assent, he is by the very fact cut off from Catholic unity. "No one who merely disbelieves in all (these heresies) can for that reason regard himself as a Catholic or call himself one. For there may be or may arise some other heresies, which are not set out in this work of ours, and, if any one holds to one single one of these he is not a Catholic" (S. Augustinus, De Haeresibus, n. 88). (Pope Leo XIII, Satis Cognitum, June 29, 1896.)
Father Gallitzin was decidedly opposed to the errors of Protestantism and Judeo-Masonry upon which the counterfeit church of conciliarism is built and takes its daily sustenance. He was very much opposed to the Protestant spirit of egalitarianism that is enshrined in the Protestant and Masonic Novus Ordo service, especially as people stand to receive what they believe, albeit falsely, to be the Real Presence of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ in that service:
Anything that he [Father Gallitzin] thought the least bit irreverent in church brought an immediate correction from him regardless of who was the guilty party. One day a Protestant of the district decided to attend the Sunday Mass. For some time he stood watching curiously the kneeling Catholics. Then he felt an arm on his shoulder and heard someone saying, "Everyone kneels here." He was on in his knees in an instant. The pastor of Loretto was not be trifled with.
Another time the Protestant wife of one of his parishioners decided to come to Mass with her husband. She had made up her mind, however, that nothing was going to make her kneel in a Catholic church. She stood up boldly in the middle of the Church, and when the pastor turned around during the Mass, there was no missing her. The parishioners began to grow uncomfortable and wish they were somewhere else. They were well aware than an explosion was coming, and it was going to be painful.
Demetrius didn't say anything to her, however, until it was time to give Holy Communion. Then he turned around and said in a low voice, "Kneel down, women; kneel down." Nothing happened. The woman had made up her mind that nothing was going to make her kneel, and she stuck to her decision. Demetrius looked at her for half a moment, and then the fire was kindled. "Woman, kneel down!" he roared in a voice that shook the windows. This time she dropped to her knees in a hurry. Even if she wished to stand longer, her trembling knees would not support her. The pastor looked quite capable of calling down fire from heaven to strike her dead.
Strangely enough, six months later the same woman came to Demetrius asking to be baptized. His insistence on reverence for the Blessed Sacrament had convinced her that the Catholic religion is the true faith. His tremendous faith was simply contagious. He would never spare human feelings when the honor of God was at stake. (Brother Bernard Donahue, C.S.C., The Voice That Shook Windows: A Story of Prince-Father Gallitzin. Notre Dame, Indiana: Dujarie Press, 1961, pp. 83-85.)
Why is it that so many in the "resist and recognize" camp, including most of the leaders of the Society of Saint Pius X, spare the human feelings of Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI when he, Ratzinger/Benedict, has so blasphemed the honor and majesty and glory of God repeatedly in a most brazen manner?
Why is it that so many "pastors" yet attached to the structures of the counterfeit church of conciliarism who know that the Novus Ordo is offensive to God refuse to defend His greater honor and glory by denouncing conciliarism and urging their parishioners to join them in leaving this false church and its abominable form of ":worship"?
Father Demetrius Gallitzin had his share of battles with his parishioners. He fought those battles because he wanted to get them home to Heaven as members of the true Church. We should always understand, my friends, that, no matter the difficulties that might exist in a given place at a given time, we can never associate with the spiritual robber barons of the counterfeit church of conciliarism who believe in the exact opposite of what Father Gallitzin defended so forcefully throughout the forty-five years of his priesthood, the spotless, virginal integrity of the Catholic Faith.
We are not going to "vote" our way out of the mess that Modernity has created in the world. We are not going to "vote" our way out of the mess caused in this time of the papal vacancy by arrogating unto the laity an almost total control over temporal matters in a chapel that cannot but help but temper how a pastor preaches on such delicate matters as modesty of dress and avoiding an immersion in worldliness. And a pastor whose very employment is controlled by such a board might possibly be tempted to restrain almost entirely any desire to preach on the heresy of Americanism for fear of offending the sensibilities of parishioners who are so taken with the myths of American nationalism and their supposed "compatibility" with the Catholic Faith that they recoil at any mention of them from the pulpit.
With complete and total trust in the Immaculate Heart of Mary as we rely upon the tender Mercies of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, may our own fidelity to the Catholic Faith and Our Lady's Fatima Message help more and more of our fellow Catholics, as well as non-Catholics, to seek out the true Faith in the catacombs and to reject the anti-Incarnational errors of Modernity in the world and the Modernist ethos abroad in the counterfeit church of conciliarism, praying as many Rosaries each day as our states in life permit and making as much reparation as we can for our sins, which have done so much to wound the Church Militant on earth, and for those of the whole world.
Isn't it time to pray a set of mysteries of Our Lady's Most Holy Rosary? Lent is coming in two days. It is time to talk less and to pray more for our own needs and those of Holy Mother Church in this time of apostasy and betrayal.
Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us now and the hour of our death Amen
Vivat Christus Rex!
Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us
Saint Joseph, pray for us
Saints Peter and Paul, pray for us
Saint John the Baptist, 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.
See also: A Litany of Saints