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February 14, 2005

The Exaltation of the Absurd

by Father Lawrence C. Smith

[Posted below is an article written by Father Lawrence C. Smith nearly a year ago. Father Smith was gracious enough to send this to me in response to the article, "Forgotten Popes, Redefined Doctrines," that was posted on this site yesterday, February 13, 2005. The brilliance of this article speaks for itself. This is an excellent companion piece to "Forgotten Popes, Redefined Doctrines." Another article by Father Smith, written on December 30, 2004, "Mob Coups Through History: A Geneology," can be found following the "Exaltation of the Absurd."]

His Holiness, Pope John Paul II, is reported by the Zenit News Service (23 February 2004) as advocating, “an adequate separation of church and state so that citizens, regardless of their religion, can make their contribution to society.” He is quoted as saying, “In fulfilling this task, the clear distinction between the civil and religious spheres allows each of these sectors to exercise its proper responsibilities effectively, with mutual respect and in complete freedom of conscience …In a pluralistic society the secularity of the state allows for communication between the different spiritual dimensions and the nation…The church and the state, therefore, are not rivals but partners: In healthy dialogue with each other they can encourage integral human development and social harmony."

The story goes on to relate that the Pope perceives a positive sign in the Turkish Constitution that recognizes "freedom of conscience, as well as freedom of religion, worship and instruction…These constitutional guarantees, once they have become part of ordinary legislation and therefore of the living fabric of society, permit all citizens regardless of religious belief or affiliation to make their contribution to the building up of Turkish society…The nation is thus able to benefit from the hope and the moral qualities that draw their strength from the deeply held religious convictions of the people.” It is the desire of the Pope that such a progressive stance will bring the juridical recognition of the Church, presumably not only in Turkey, but in all nations.

Setting aside the critical problem of the fact that “distinction” and “separation” are entirely different - separate - words with very different - distinct - meanings, rendering it impossible to make use of them interchangeably as His Holiness endeavored to do in the statement quoted by Zenit, it must be pointed out that the Pope’s own argument eliminates his desired goal, namely, of establishing religious pluralism as normative to society and guaranteed by secularism. Religious freedom is not a goal of secularism. Increasingly secular states invariably experience a lessening of religious tolerance, a diminishment of the influence of authentic morality on the public mores, and the removal of a place for God and His Church from official policy, national objectives, and cultural identity.

As a case in point, one needs look no further than the poster child of national secularism enshrining the chimera of religious freedom, the United States of America. The Constitution of this country explicitly denies pride of place to the Body of Christ, the Catholic Church, and any other religious organization, within the philosophy, structures, or mechanisms of the government. The Church is forbidden to comment from the pulpit on political issues on pain of losing the all-important tax-free status afforded the pusillanimous who prefer legitimacy in the city of man rather than citizenship in the City of God. Sodomy has been endorsed as a protected “right” by the Supreme Court of the United States, the Supreme Court of the State of Massachusetts, and the mayors of San Francisco and Chicago, as well as the two most prominent candidates for the nomination of the Democrat Party for President. The current Republican President thinks sodomite marriage unacceptable, but is on record as wishing to codify laws in favor of sodomite “civil unions”. Contraception, divorce, abortion, and usury are commonplace to the point of being unremarkable in the minds of most Americans.

Looking further afield one sees that France has passed a law criminalizing the wearing of religious symbols and apparel in public places, such as muslim women wearing veils, Jews wearing yarmulkes, and Christians wearing large crucifixes. The French have the temerity and the cheek to suggest that this law is a protection of the rights of muslim women against the tyranny and injustice of muslim religious practice. Soviet Russia was as secular a country as could have been conceived, and its secularism perdures in the post-Soviet era. The result of this ongoing secularist bent is that the Russian government outlawed almost every religious group in the world from seeking members within its borders, excepting only the Russian Orthodox Church and a few small religious entities that pose little threat to the monolithic status quo.

Closer to hand, our neighbors to the north in Canada are in the process of making a “hate crime” out of public opposition to “gay rights”, and leaders in that nation are so bold as to aver that abortion and homosexuality are Canadian values that must be given every legal support imaginable. Secularist, Marxist, and Masonic regimes in Cuba, Mexico, and Nicaragua have a disturbing habit of seizing Church property, imprisoning clergy, and executing bishops. Secularism and pluralism in Haiti have resulted in the spectacle of a country that holds voodoo as its national religion being presided over by a former Catholic priest who just happens to be in sympathy with communism.

Secularism has not made the muslim minority in India or the hindu minority in Pakistan any safer. Catholics in Northern Ireland do not benefit, religiously or economically, from the enlightened secularist policies of England. The Dalai Lama is in exile precisely because the Red Chinese are quite indiscriminate in their application of nonsectarian values toward buddhists, Catholics, or their fellow atheists who dare seek the rights for man already denied to God.

“Religious freedom” can not stand up even in the abstract because of that pesky law of non-contradiction forbidding a statement and its opposite to be simultaneously true. A nation committed to offering human sacrifices for the appeasement of the gods can hardly be expected to be tolerant of a group of people in its midst who insist on the absolute sanctity of human life. One can not say as statements of absolute truth both that men must always be killed and men must never be killed.

Lest any demur that human sacrifice is an extreme example unbefitting a sober argument, please remember that the slaughter of innocents is very much a concrete issue regarding religious beliefs as they touch on the subject of abortion. How, pray tell, can one nation respect the religious beliefs of two sets of people, one of which literally celebrates the scalding, evisceration, and impaling of infants, and the other of which is convinced that such barbarity cries to Heaven for vengeance?

But even if the theoretical notion of religious liberty could be sensibly and sanely maintained, which it can not be, actual human experience across several centuries, around the world, and among billions of people demonstrates that it simply does not work. The practical result of religious liberty is the freedom to not practice religion becoming the prohibition of religious practice ultimately leading to the persecution of religious practitioners. Religious persecution by the religious is at least logically consistent: error has no rights. Religious persecution by those claiming to champion religious freedom adds to the injury of injustice the insult of illogic, hypocrisy, and rank dishonesty.

Perhaps the most absurd aspect of the Pope’s statement, however, is that there simply is no reason within the concept of religious liberty binding on all of its advocates to explain why religious liberty should be offered to anyone at all. Some secularists are atheists. Most would probably describe themselves as agnostics. A secularist calling himself a religionist is a walking talking oxymoron. A religionist calling himself a secularist is an apostate.

It would seem that the desire of a secularist approach to the problem of sectarian discord is predicated on the fact that religious strife stems from religious disagreement. What happens, then, when the secularists disagree? An answer to that question can be found in the history books on the subject of World Wars I and II; in the contemporary media describing the conflicts in Iraq, the Korean peninsula, and the Ivory Coast; and in the revealed word of God Almighty in the Book of the Apocalypse chapter eighteen.

The Pope making his appeal to the government in Turkey begs the question of why a diplomat from a muslim country about to join the economic organization of Europe with stated policies offensive to Christian morality, should listen at all to the head of the Catholic Church. Secularist man is satisfied that he can solve all of mankind’s problems without recourse to the divine, faith, or the Church. That is the definition of secularism; it is thoroughly opposed to the truths, morality, and worship native to religion.

What ails man is not that there are too many religions fighting over what is good, in need of a secularist referee to bring deluded simpletons to their senses. What ails man is the unwillingness of the hierarchy and members of the Catholic Church to fight for the one Faith, one Baptism, and one Lord as revealed to and taught by His one Church, wherein true peace can be shared, real hope is offered for the relief of mortal woes, and the love of God is experienced with the confidence that He will judge, not referee, with justice and mercy on the Last Day. How His Holiness expects a conglomeration of unbelieving, immoral, and money-grubbing bureaucrats to do what the Church seems unwilling at present to attempt admits of no rational explanation.

Father Smith, Sacerdos vagus
25 February 2004: Ash Wednesday
Excerpts from Pope Gregory XVI’s encyclical letter “Mirari vos” (1832):

Mob Coups through History: A Geneology

by Father Lawrence C. Smith

Let him who would understand these presents hearken to the Word of the Gospel of Jesus Christ according to St. Matthew, Chapter the First, Verses one through sixteen; according to St. Luke, Chapter the Third, Verses twenty-three through thirty-eight; according to St. John, Chapter the First, Verses one through eighteen; and of the same Beloved Disciple, Chapter the Eighth, Verses thirty through fifty-nine.

Heed ye also the testimony of the Prophet Isaias, in whose mouth the Lord God hath been pleased to place the prophecy of the reign of the Messias thus:

Her time is near at hand, and her days shall not be prolonged. For the Lord will have mercy on Jacob, and will choose out of Israel, and will make them rest upon their own ground: and the stranger shall be joined with them, and shall adhere to the House of Jacob. And the people shall take them, and bring them into their place: and the House of Israel shall possess them in the land of the Lord for servants and handmaids: and they shall make them captives that had taken them, and shall subdue their oppressors. And it shall come to pass in that day, that when God shall give thee rest from thy labour, and from thy vexation, and from the hard bondage, wherewith thou didst serve before, thou shalt take up this parable against the king of Babylon, and shalt say: How is the oppressor come to nothing? the tribute hath ceased? The Lord hath broken the staff of the wicked, the rod of the rulers, that struck the people in wrath with an incurable wound, that brought nations under in fury, that persecuted in a cruel manner. How art thou fallen from Heaven, O Lucifer, who didst rise in the morning? how art thou fallen to the earth, that didst wound the nations? And thou saidst in thy heart: I will ascend into Heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God, I will sit in the mountain of the Covenant, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the height of the clouds, I will be like the Most High. But yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, into the depth of the pit.

Behold the Lord shall lay waste the earth, and shall strip it, and shall afflict the face thereof, and scatter abroad the inhabitants thereof. And it shall be as with the people, so with the priest: and as with the servant, so with his master: as with the handmaid, so with her mistress: as with the buyer, so with the seller: as with the lender, so with the borrower: as with him that calleth for his money, so with him that oweth. With desolation shall the earth be laid waste, and it shall be utterly spoiled: for the Lord hath spoken this word. The earth mourned, and faded away, and is weakened: the world faded away, the height of the people of the earth is weakened. And the earth is infected by the inhabitants thereof: because they have transgressed the laws, they have changed the ordinance, they have broken the everlasting covenant.

Therefore shall a curse devour the earth, and the inhabitants thereof shall sin: and therefore they that dwell therein shall be mad, and few men shall be left. The vintage hath mourned, the vine hath languished away, all the merryhearted have sighed. The mirth of timbrels hath ceased, the noise of them that rejoice is ended, the melody of the harp is silent. They shall not drink wine with a song: the drink shall be bitter to them that drink it. The city of vanity is broken down, every house is shut up, no man cometh in.

There shall be a crying for wine in the streets: all mirth is forsaken: the joy of the earth is gone away. Desolation is left in the city, and calamity shall oppress the gates. For it shall be thus in the midst of the earth, in the midst of the people, as if a few olives, that remain, should be shaken out of the olive tree: or grapes, when the vintage is ended. These shall lift up their voice, and shall give praise: when the Lord shall be glorified, they shall make a joyful noise from the sea. Therefore glorify ye the Lord in instruction: the name of the Lord God of Israel in the islands of the sea.

From the ends of the earth we have heard praises, the glory of the just one. And I said: My secret to myself, my secret to myself, woe is me: the prevaricators have prevaricated, and with the prevarication of transgressors they have prevaricated. Fear, and the pit, and the snare are upon thee, O thou inhabitant of the earth. And it shall come to pass, that he that shall flee from the noise of the fear, shall fall into the pit: and he that shall rid himself out of the pit, shall be taken in the snare: for the flood-gates from on high are opened, and the foundations of the earth shall be shaken. With breaking shall the earth be broken, with crushing shall the earth be crushed, with trembling shall the earth be moved. With shaking shall the earth be shaken as a drunken man, and shall be removed as the tent of one night: and the iniquity thereof shall be heavy upon it, and it shall fall, and not rise again.

And it shall come to pass, that in that day the Lord shall visit upon the host of heaven on high, and upon the kings of the earth, on the earth. And they shall be gathered together as in the gathering of one bundle into the pit, and they shall be shut up there in prison: and after many days they shall be visited. And the moon shall blush, and the sun shall be ashamed, when the Lord of hosts shall reign in mount Sion, and in Jerusalem, and shall be glorified in the sight of his ancients.

Thus saith the Lord.

God is.
God is the omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent Creator of all.
God is the King of the Universe.
God is absolutely just in the exercise of His sovereignty over His creation.
God is unending, uncreated, and unchanging.
God is forever as He has ever been: Almighty, Sovereign, and Perfect.
God is.

Lucifer was.
Lucifer was created as an exquisite angel of light by God.
Lucifer was offered the choice to honor God as his Creator.
Lucifer in his unspeakable pride denied the sovereignty of the Almighty.
Lucifer became an angel of darkness, a demon.
Lucifer, in rejecting the rule of God, sought to establish His own rule in Gods creation.
Lucifer failed.
In his rejection of the sovereignty of God, his attempt at dominion, and his failure thereat, Lucifer became the enemy of God, the personal manifestation of evil itself, satan.
satan and his legions of fallen angels refused Gods just sovereignty and embraced instead the injustice of anarchy, for where God is not acknowledged as Lord, none can rule in His stead.

God is.
God is Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
God the Father through God the Son in the power of God the Holy Ghost wills to create man.
God the Father wills to create man.
God the Son is the Word through whom man is created.
God the Holy Ghost is the vivifying power by whom man lives.
God is.

Adam was created by God in the Divine image and likeness.
Adam was set as sovereign King by God over Gods creation in the Garden of Eden.
Eve was given to Adam to be his Queen and to share in his rule.
satan in the guise of a serpent deceived Eve.
Adam hearkened to Eve, fell prey to satans deceit, and embraced the pride of the fallen, losing sovereignty, kingship, and kingdom.
satan rebelled against God.
Eve rebelled against God and against Adam.
Adam rebelled against God, against justice, and against himself.
Adam and Eve rejected the just rule of God, in which Adam was sovereign beneath the sovereignty of God, and entered into the anarchy of the dominion of satan in the world.
Subjected to the rule of satan, Adam and Eve ruled neither creation nor themselves.

God is.
God is merciful.
God in His mercy assured Adam and Eve, even as He sent them into exile, that a victorious Enemy of their enemy would come one day.
God in His mercy spared Noah.
God in His mercy made a Covenant with Abraham.
God in His mercy called Moses His friend.
God in His mercy gave Himself to Israel to bring them justice, to give them order, to be their King.
God is.

Israel, in its faithlessness, demanded to have a man as king like all the nations of men had kings.
Samuel reminded Israel that they had God as their King.
Israel insisted that they wanted a man for a king.
Samuel warned them that men as kings would be oppressors, unjust, and disordered.
Israel rejected God as King, and begged for a man to be their king.

God is.
God chose Saul to be king over Israel.
God was displeased with Sauls faithless injustice.
God raised up David to be a king after His own heart.
God called David His son.
God promised that the line of David will never end.
God is.

The sons of David were faithless.
The sons of David worshipped idols.
The sons of David refused to keep their Covenant with God.
The sons of David oppressed Israel.
The sons of David were defeated by Assyria.
The sons of David lost Jerusalem and were sent into exile in Babylon.
The sons of David returned to Jerusalem, only to return to faithlessness.

God is.
God in His Providence from all eternity chose a remnant out of Israel.
God chose a righteous Daughter of Sion of the House of David from among the faithful remnant of Israel to be the bearer of glad tidings to His people.
God formed this Daughter from the very womb to be sinless, to be pure, to be full of His grace.
God in the fullness of time sent forth the Archangel Gabriel unto the Blessed Virgin Mary to proclaim to her the Presence of the Lord.
God the Holy Ghost, pleased to hear her humble submission as the Handmaid of the Lord, overshadowed her, and thus she conceived in her inviolate womb the very Son of God!
God is.

Jesus Christ is God.
Jesus Christ is Lord.
Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the Son of Mary.
Jesus Christ is the King of Kings.
Jesus Christ is the King of the Jews.
Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world.
Jesus Christ was condemned to die on the Cross by the Jews, who shrieked, Crucify Him!...We have no king but Caesar!

God is.
God heard Adam reject Him as King and cast him out of Eden.
God saw the wickedness of Noahs time and sent the Flood to erase man from the earth.
God was stayed in His anger at Aaron and all Israel by Moses who pleaded that He spare them for their faithlessness in the desert.
God condemned Saul for his unrighteousness and took the kingship from his house and established the House of David forever.
God sent His Son Jesus Christ to restore Kingship to Israel, only to hear the foul words, We have no king but Caesar!; Israel is dispossessed of Priest, Prophet, and King until the will of God is fulfilled just before the Son of Man, Jesus Christ, the King of Kings, returns.
God is.

Jesus Christ is risen!
Jesus Christ has given the Keys to the Kingdom of Heaven to His Vicar on earth, St. Peter.
Jesus Christ has guided His Flock, His Body, His Bride, the Church, the Barque of Peter through the Holy Ghost from the time of Linus through Sixtus II through Siricius through Leo I through Gregory I through Leo IX through Gregory VII through Pius V through Pius X, and shall unto the end of time.
Jesus Christ has commanded the Good News of the Kingdom of Heaven now at hand be proclaimed through the Office of His Vicar wielding the Keys of Peter to bind and loose on earth and in Heaven.
Jesus Christ has promised Peter that the devil desirous of him shall not have him, that the gates of hell assailing him shall not prevail, that the Church has in him a rock foundation.

God is.
God maintains His children on the Way where apostasy would lead them astray.
God upholds His Truth where heresy would deny Him.
God preserves His Church in sanctifying grace where schism would kill the Life given by the Holy Ghost.
God is the Lord of history, even and especially where His sovereignty is rejected by the world.
God exercises His sovereignty in history through His Church, given to man that all men might come to know God and Jesus Christ whom He sent.
God is.

St. Peter anointed Charlemagne to succeed Constantine the Great in governing the nations in the Name of Christ.
St. Peter received the willing acquiescence of Edward, Louis, Henry, Stephen, Wencelsaus, Helen, Cunegunda, Margaret, Elizabeth, Bridget and numerous others to be anointed and to reign in the Name of Christ.
St. Peter has been pleased to raise King Edward, King Louis, King Henry, King Stephen, King Wenceslaus, Queen Helen, Queen Cunegunda, Queen Margaret, Queen Elizabeth, Queen Bridget, and numerous others of the royal state to the Altar of God.
St. Peter enjoyed no less than a thousand years from Constantine until Charles V an unquestioned acknowledgement that the Christian state is in service to the Kingdom of Christ.
St. Peter was defended by Catholic monarchs from the heretics following the errors of Mahomet.
St. Peter was supported in orthodoxy against the schismatics adhering to the rebellion of Photius.
St. Peter has never been defeated in his defense of the sovereignty of Christ the King before the assaults of the world, the flesh, and the devil.

God is.
God the Son is present in the world in His Body the Catholic Church.
God the Son rules through His Body the Catholic Church.
God the Son has chosen nothing other than the Catholic Church to be His Bride.
God the Son has no sheep in His Flock who do not belong to the Catholic Church.
God the Son does not know anyone who is not a member of His Body, who is not a child of His Bride, who is not within the fold of the Catholic Church.
God is.

Martin Luther rejected St. Peter as the Vicar of Christ on earth.
Henry VIII rejected St. Peter as the Vicar of Christ on earth.
George Washington rejected the Body of Christ as the only legitimate context for the rule of men on earth.
Napoleon Bonaparte rejected the Body of Christ as the only legitimate context for the rule of men on earth.
Karl Marx, Vladimir Lenin, Josef Stalin, Mao Zedong, and Fidel Castro rejected God as sovereign of the universe.
The United Nations Charter, The United States Supreme Court, and the European Union Constitution reject God as sovereign of the universe.
Not one nation on earth in the 21st century, including the Vatican City State, demands that Jesus Christ be recognized as Sovereign King of all nations.

God is.
God was rejected as King by satan.
God was rejected as King by Adam.
God was rejected as King by Israel.
God was rejected as King by the heretic Mahomet.
God was rejected as King by the schismatic Photius.
God was rejected as King by the apostate Henry.
God was rejected as King by the modernist Washington.
God was rejected as King by the atheist Marx.
God was rejected as King by the secularist UN, EU, and US Supreme Court.

But God still is I AM!

tho demons deny Him, God is.
tho pagans are ignorant of Him, God is.
tho Jews refuse Him, God is.
tho Muslims blaspheme His Son, God is.
tho photians rebel against His Sons Vicar, God is.
tho protestants revolt against His Truth, God is.
tho democracies dethrone Him, God is.
tho communists and socialists denounce Him, God is.
tho modernity desires to do without Him, God is.

There is no justice without God.
There is no rule without God.
There is no order without God.
There is no truth without God.
There is no freedom without God.
There is no authority without God.
There is no sovereignty where God is not King.

Jesus Christ must be King.
Jesus Christ must be Lord.
Jesus Christ must be the only Name by which men are saved.
Jesus Christ must be the Name at which every knee in Heaven, on earth, and under the earth bends.
Jesus Christ must be the Head and His Body must be the Church.
Jesus Christ must be the Living Bread come down from Heaven, without which none comes to Heaven, with which the soul comes to eternal Life.
Jesus Christ must be all in all,

For Jesus Christ is God.

Where Jesus Christ is not acknowledged as God,
Where the Body of Christ the Church is not acknowledged as His Bride,
Where the successor of St. Peter is not acknowledged as His Vicar,
There is no faith, no justice, no order;
There satan wields dominion over the lesser creatures rebelling against God;
There sin and death hold sway without any hope of an overthrow of their tyranny;
There man forfeits all claim to kingship, sonship, and sovereignty, succumbing instead to the everlasting anarchy of the torment of satan.

God is.
Is He recognized by the UN, the EU, or the US as Sovereign over all?
Is He deferred to by science?
Is He the goal of economics?
Is He honored by false religions separated in any way from the Catholic Church?
Is He, acknowledged as Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, the central resident in every home on earth?
Is He worshipped in spirit and in truth through the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass on every altar in the world by the authentic priesthood of Jesus Christ?
Is He given Honor, Glory, and Kingship through Catholic sovereigns, over Catholic nations, under the Roman Pontiff serving as Vicar of Jesus Christ until He comes again to judge the living and the Dead?
Is He your Lord, your God, your King, now and forever?

Regardless of your answer

God is.

Father Smith.

29 December 2004
St. Thomas of Canterbury
Vinyamar, Tustin, California




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