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MARCH 8, 2005

Go, and Speak No More

by Thomas A. Droleskey

And Jesus went up unto Mount Olivet. And early in the morning He came again into the temple, and all the people came to Him, and sitting down he taught them. And the scribes and the Pharisess bring unto Him a woman taken in adultery: and they set her in the midst, and said to Him: "Master, this woman was even now taken in adultery. Now Moses in the law commanded us to stone such a one. But what sayest Thou?" And this they said tempting Him, that they might accuse Him. But Jesus bowing Himself down, wrote with His finger on the ground.

When therefore they continued and asking Him, He lifted up Himself, and said to them: "He that is without sin among you, let him cast a stone at her." And again stopping down, He wrote on the ground. But they hearing this, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest. And Jesus alone remained, and the woman standing in the midst. Then Jesus lifting up Himself, said to her: "Woman, where are they that accused thee? Hath no man condemned thee?"

Who said: No man, Lord. And Jesus said: "Neither will I condemn thee. Go, and now sin no more." (Jn. 8:1-11)

This passage from the Gospel according to Saint John, which is read in the Traditional Latin Mass on the Friday of the Third Week of Lent, teaches us much about the authentic compassion of the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity made Man in Our Lady's virginal and immaculate womb, Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, towards us erring sinners. It is good to meditate upon this compassion for a moment or two.

The Pharisees sought to stone the woman taken in adultery. Such was the prescription of the Mosaic law. Our Lord knew each of the sins of the men who wanted the woman taken in adultery to be stoned to death. Thus, He began to write in the dust of the earth the sins of each of the men who had brought Him the woman taken in adultery. This is also very significant. This is the only account we have of Our Lord actually writing something. He wrote the sins of the men who were so eager to stone a fellow sinner in the dust of the earth, signifying that He knows each one of us sins but is nevertheless willing to have them blown away off of our souls in the Sacred Tribunal of Penance if we seek out the absolution available to us there from an alter Christus. We still need to make reparation for the sins that are absolved in the Sacrament of Penance. The sins themselves, though, are wiped out.

Indeed, Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque's spiritual director wanted to test the validity of the claim that Our Lord was appearing to her to spread devotion to His Most Sacred Heart. He asked her to ask Our Lord to name the last sin that she confessed in the confessional. Saint Margaret Mary did as her spiritual director requested. She was asked by her director what Our Lord's response to her was when she asked Him to name the last sin she had confessed. She quoted Our Lord as saying, "I forgot." It was at that moment that her spiritual director, Saint Claude de la Colombière, knew that her apparitions were authentic. Our Lord loves us so much and is so moved by the contrite heart of a sincere penitent that He wills to forget our sins once the words of absolution have been uttered by a priest in the administration of His ineffable mercy after a good and humble confession. Yes, our sins are blown away just as the wind was to blow away the writings Our Lord made in the dust of the earth, the very element from which our bodies are formed and will return upon our deaths, when He confronted the hypocrisy and righteousness of the Pharisees, so eager to put a fellow sinner to death.

Importantly, though, Our Lord did not reaffirm the woman taken in adultery in her sin. He did not excuse her sin. He did not tell her that she was the victim of parental abuse or that she was unable to control her passions as a result of some genetic deformity. While He understood the weakness that caused her to sin and thus did not condemn her for sinning, He nevertheless exhorted her to "Go, and sin no more." That is, each of us, erring and frequently recidivist sinners, must make an effort to reform our lives and to cooperate with the graces won for us by the shedding of every single drop of Our Lord's Most Precious Blood on the wood of the Holy Cross on Good Friday to avoid the near occasions of sin and to scale the heights of sanctity, especially by being totally consecrated to Our Lady's Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart. Sinners we will be until the day we die. As the late Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen noted on many occasions, "A saint is sinner who is trying to reform on a daily basis."

Any serious disciple of Our Lord must grow to despise even his least venial sins, understanding that even our least venial sins caused Our Lord to suffer unspeakable horrors during His Passion and Death and wounds His Mystical Body, Holy Mother Church, today. The canonized saints of the Church despised sin. Some of them, such as Saint Bridget of Sweden, were given mystical experiences to see how our sins caused Our Lord to suffer so much. We must therefore endeavor to root out sin from our lives, being earnest at all times, but especially in this season of Lent, to avail ourselves of the graces administered to us in the Sacrament of Penance and by seeking to live penitentially as consecrated sons and daughters of Our Lady's Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart. Sin is what causes all of the problems of the world, bar none. There is no other remedy to the problems of the world than by the reform of the lives of individual Catholics on a daily basis in cooperation with the sacraments and by the conversion of everyone in the whole world, without exception, to the Catholic Church so that they will also reform their lives in cooperation with sanctifying grace.

It is thus one thing to sin and to express sorrow for one's sins in the Sacrament of Penance. It is quite another to persist in sin unrepenantly, worse yet to exult in one's sins, even worse still to promote sin under cover of law as a matter of public policy. No one can say that He loves Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and His true Church while He persists in sin unrepentantly and encourages others to sin by means of His bad example and/or by seeing to institutionalize sin as a matter of public policy. Such a person has no idea what Our Lord suffered as a result of our sins and that every bit of evil and disorder that exists in the world today is the result of mankind's sins.

A Successor of the Apostles has the obligation to call sinners to repentance. One of the Spiritual Works of Mercy is "To Admonish the Sinner." A bishop, especially a diocesan or archdiocesan ordinary, has the obligation to see to it that the truths of the true Faith are preached without equivocation or hesitation to everyone, Catholic and non-Catholic, without the boundaries of his episcopal jurisdiction. Upon his immortal soul rests the eternal welfare of everyone who has been entrusted to his pastoral care. It is a grave crime against the Faith, therefore, for a bishop to remain silent in the face of the promotion of evils or to actually seem to reward those who promote evils, as Pope Saint Gregory the Great intimated in his Pastoral Guide.

Enter Theodore Cardinal McCarrick, the Archbishop of Washington, D.C. Fresh off the shameful role he played last year in an effort to indemnify pro-abortion politicians from being refused Holy Communion because of their active support for one of the Four Sins that Cry out to Heaven for Vengeance, the murder of the innocent, Cardinal McCarrick is now stating that the bishops of the United States should not ban pro-abortion politicians from speaking at Catholic colleges and universities. Consider this news item from LifeSiteNews.com, dated March 4, 2005:

WASHINGTON, March 4, 2005 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The Boston Globe reports today that Washington Cardinal Theodore McCarrick has said he supports allowing politicians who disagree with Church teaching on issues such as abortion to speak at Catholic colleges.

The Cardinal is heading a special task force on implementation of a United States of Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) statement agreed upon last June. The statement, "Catholics in Political Life," says pro-abortion politicians should not be honored by Catholic communities and institutions. "They should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions," says the statement.

However , the interpretation of not giving ‘platforms' to pro-abortion politicians seems to be weakening. “McCarrick said he will argue that politicians who disagree with church teachings should be allowed to speak at Catholic colleges but should not receive honorary degrees,” reports the Globe.

The news came as a disappointment to Catholic pro-life activists even outside the US. Surresh Dominic, spokesman for Canada's Campaign Life Catholic told LifeSiteNews.com “It's totally inappropriate for a Catholic institution to give a platform to someone who supports what the church teaches is murder of the innocent.”

Dominic added, “I doubt the Cardinal would even consider having a white supremacist come and speak at a Catholic college since such a person would rightly be viewed as a supporter of discrimination based on race, which the church condemns. However, according to the Catholic church, abortion is at least as evil as racism.”

Dominic concluded, “And besides, abortion, like racism, is all about discrimination. It's discrimination based on age, size and dependency.”

Well, forget about white supremacy. Forget about racism. A Catholic who opposed the conciliarist error of ecumenism and wanted to promote Pope Pius XI's Mortalium Animos as an expression of the consistent teaching of the Catholic Church on inter-religious relations would be banned at most of our Catholic colleges and universities in a heartbeat. A Catholic who wanted to give a talk about the revolutionary nature of the General Instruction to the Roman Missal, say, about a book named G.I.R.M. Warfare, would be prohibited from speaking without any reservation whatsoever.

Would a member of the Society of Saint Pius X or a priest who has broken ranks with the diocesan structure (Father Stephen P. Zigrang, Father Lawrence Smith, Father Paul Sretenovic) or who is no longer associated with an Ecclesia Dei "approved" community (Father Patrick Perez, Father Paul Petko) be welcomed to speak at one of "our" colleges or universities under the banner of "academic freedom"? Perish the thought. Lutherans, Methodists, Presbyterians, Unitarians, Jews, Mohammedans, Photians, Buddhists, Hindus, feminists, Communists, New Agers, Wiccans, and other asserted heretics and infidels are quite welcome in Catholic colleges and universities. Many teach at "Catholic" institutions.

Thus, it really should not shock us that Catholics in public life who support abortion would be deemed "appropriate" to speak at a Catholic college or university as long as they are not receiving an "award" or an "honorary degree." The mere fact that they are invited to speak at all is a sign of honor extended to these reprobates, men and women who support the mystical destruction of Our Lord in the person of preborn children in their mothers' wombs. How in the world can anyone say He loves Our Lord while he supports the mystical destruction of Christ in the person of preborn children in their mothers' wombs? While we have the obligation to pray for the conversion of such individuals our bishops have the obligation to excommunicate them from the Church and to ban them from any and all appearances on Catholic institutions. Any Catholic institution that is unwilling to ban individuals who promote the sins of abortion and perversity and usury and euthanasia (among many others) under cover of law should be placed under an edict and forbidden to call itself in any, way, shape or form a Catholic institution in good standing.

The reality of our situation, which I have experienced first-hand as a student at four Catholic institutions of higher "learning" (two universities, two seminary) and a professor at four Catholic colleges and universities (and two high schools), is that those who promote sin and/or who are steeped in doctrinal errors and heresies are indeed the honored faculty members and guest speakers at so-called Catholic universities and colleges. My Master's alma mater, the University of Notre Dame, just recently held its second annual "festival" in honor of perverse, unnatural sins committed against the Sixth and Ninth Commandments. A play with a particularly vulgar name was produced on the campus of Our Lady's university once again during that same "festival." All of this represents a fundamental loss of the Catholic Faith on the part of the administrators and many of the faculty members of these once proud institutions of Catholic education. Our Lord meant it when He said that it was better for one to have a millstone placed around his neck and dumped into a lake than to lead one of His little ones astray. Millions of little ones have been and are continuing to be led astray by the promotion of sin in Catholic universities and colleges and seminaries and religious education programs.

No one who promotes serious sin under cover of law and/or as a matter of "personal freedom" or "cultural diversity" is a friend of Our Lord. No such person has anything--and I mean anything--constructive to offer to students or to a college or university community. Consider the words of Pope Leo XIII, contained in Immortale Dei in 1885:

So, too, the liberty of thinking, and of publishing, whatsoever each one likes, without any hindrance, is not in itself an advantage over which society can wisely rejoice. On the contrary, it is the fountain-head and origin of many evils. Liberty is a power perfecting man, and hence should have truth and goodness for its object. But the character of goodness and truth cannot be changed at option. These remain ever one and the same, and are no less unchangeable than nature itself. If the mind assents to false opinions, and the will chooses and follows after what is wrong, neither can attain its native fullness, but both must fall from their native dignity into an abyss of corruption. Whatever, therefore, is opposed to virtue and truth may not rightly be brought temptingly before the eye of man, much less sanctioned by the favor and protection of the law. A well-spent life is the only way to heaven, whither all are bound, and on this account the State is acting against the laws and dictates of nature whenever it permits the license of opinion and of action to lead minds astray from truth and souls away from the practice of virtue. To exclude the Church, founded by God Himself, from life, from laws, from the education of youth, from domestic society is a grave and fatal error. A State from which religion is banished can never be well regulated; and already perhaps more than is desirable is known of the nature and tendency of the so-called civil philosophy of life and morals. The Church of Christ is the true and sole teacher of virtue and guardian of morals. She it is who preserves in their purity the principles from which duties flow, and, by setting forth most urgent reasons for virtuous life, bids us not only to turn away from wicked deeds, but even to curb all movements of the mind that are opposed to reason, even though they be not carried out in action.

Those who support even one abortion under cover of law are supporting that which is "opposed to virtue and truth" and thus "may not rightly be brought temptingly before the eye of man, much less sanctioned by the favor and the protection of law." How can it be that that which cannot be be favored rightly by the State can be looked upon with indifference by a cardinal archbishop of the Catholic Church? One whose mind is poisoned by support for baby-killing is disqualified from any having any platform in a Catholic facility. This applies to those individuals in public life who say they are "pro-life" but who actually support the slicing and dicing of little babies in their mothers' wombs in some instances. Such individuals are not "pro-life," simply less pro-abortion than those who support unlimited baby-killing. Similarly, those who support the funding of chemical abortions here and around the world by means of voting to support "family planning" programs should be subjected to solemn excommunication and to being barred from any and all platforms that are connected in any way with the Catholic Church. The Fifth Commandment means what it says: "Thou shalt not kill."

Describing the war that was being waged against the right of the Church to direct those in public life to subordinate their policies to the binding precepts of the Divine positive law and the natural law, Poe Leo XIII wrote the following in Sapientiae Christianae, issued in 1890:

But with what bitterness and in how many guises war has been waged against the Church it would be ill-timed now to urge. From the fact that it has been vouchsafed to human reason to snatch from nature, through the investigations of science, many of her treasured secrets and to apply them befittingly to the divers requirements of life, men have become possessed with so arrogant a sense of their own powers as already to consider themselves able to banish from social life the authority and empire of God. Led away by this delusion, they make over to human nature the dominion of which they think God has been despoiled; from nature, they maintain, we must seek the principle and rule of all truth; from nature, they aver, alone spring, and to it should be referred, all the duties that religious feeling prompts. Hence, they deny all revelation from on high, and all fealty due to the Christian teaching of morals as well as all obedience to the Church, and they go so far as to deny her power of making laws and exercising every other kind of right, even disallowing the Church any place among the civil institutions of the commonweal. These men aspire unjustly, and with their might strive, to gain control over public affairs and lay hands on the rudder of the State, in order that the legislation may the more easily be adapted to these principles, and the morals of the people influenced in accordance with them. Whence it comes to pass that in many countries Catholicism is either openly assailed or else secretly interfered with, full impunity being granted to the most pernicious doctrines, while the public profession of Christian truth is shackled oftentimes with manifold constraints.

Pope Leo XIII went on to note in the same encyclical letter:

Amid such reckless and widespread folly of opinion, it is, as We have said, the office of the Church to undertake the defense of truth and uproot errors from the mind, and this charge has to be at all times sacredly observed by her, seeing that the honor of God and the salvation of men are confided to her keeping. But, when necessity compels, not those only who are invested with power of rule are bound to safeguard the integrity of faith, but, as St. Thomas maintains: "Each one is under obligation to show forth his faith, either to instruct and encourage others of the faithful, or to repel the attacks of unbelievers.''[12] To recoil before an enemy, or to keep silence when from all sides such clamors are raised against truth, is the part of a man either devoid of character or who entertains doubt as to the truth of what he professes to believe. In both cases such mode of behaving is base and is insulting to God, and both are incompatible with the salvation of mankind. This kind of conduct is profitable only to the enemies of the faith, for nothing emboldens the wicked so greatly as the lack of courage on the part of the good. Moreover, want of vigor on the part of Christians is so much the more blameworthy, as not seldom little would be needed on their part to bring to naught false charges and refute erroneous opinions, and by always exerting themselves more strenuously they might reckon upon being successful. After all, no one can be prevented from putting forth that strength of soul which is the characteristic of true Christians, and very frequently by such display of courage our enemies lose heart and their designs are thwarted. Christians are, moreover, born for combat, whereof the greater the vehemence, the more assured, God aiding, the triumph: "Have confidence; I have overcome the world."[13] Nor is there any ground for alleging that Jesus Christ, the Guardian and Champion of the Church, needs not in any manner the help of men. Power certainly is not wanting to Him, but in His loving kindness He would assign to us a share in obtaining and applying the fruits of salvation procured through His grace.

Pope Leo XIII was calling upon every Catholic, but especially his bishops, to root out error, not to reaffirm others, Catholic and non-Catholic alike, who are steeped in sin and/or who promote sin under cover of law. Ah, this is the nub of the problem we face today. Most of the bishops in the developed world, including the United States of America, infected with the ethos of Modernism, no longer understand or believe in the horror of personal sin. Everything becomes a matter of "discussion" and "debate," not a matter of correction and discipline (except in the case of Traditional Catholics, that is). Cardinal McCarrick said last year that the bishops should engage Catholic politicians who support abortion in a "dialogue," leaving it anyone's guess as to how much innocent blood has to be shed by means of surgical and chemical abortions before such "dialogue" is pronounced as having been useless and even counter-productive. And, obviously, Bishop Robert N. Lynch of the Diocese of Saint Petersburg, has said repeatedly that he regrets not the impending execution of Mrs. Terri Schinlder-Schiavo by her faithless husband under the terms of an unjust and immoral law on the statute books in the State of Florida but the fact that the family did not "come together" to "discuss" the matter in order to come to an "agreement" which would give everyone involved a sense of "peace." No sense of the horror of her impending murder, condemned once again by Renato Cardinal Martino on March 7, 2005 (see A Clear Defense of Terri Schiavo) and by Dr. Gian Luigi Gigli, President of the World Federation of Catholic Medical Associations (see a report on that statement below). Oh, no. The only sin for Bishop Lynch is the "excessive" rhetoric being used by those who are pointing out his manifold errors and statements that are contrary to the Catholic Faith.

Yes, the reality of sin means so very little to so many of our bishops. Look at the almost irrational hatred for Mel Gibson's masterpiece, The Passion of the Christ, which was exhibited by not a few Catholic bishops in the United States. This inspired film demonstrates quite graphically the physical and emotional sufferings our sins, having transcended time, imposed upon the God-Man as He undertook to redeem us by paying back the blood debt of our sins in His Sacred Humanity that was owed to Him in His Infinity as God. Look at the contempt shown this great film by the likes of Roger Cardinal Mahony, the Archbishop of Los Angeles, and William Cardinal Keeler, the Archbishop of Baltimore. The hierarchy--and the bureaucracies associated with it--in the United States is filled to rafters with men who have lost the Faith (see "Enemies of the Faith in Shepherds' Clothing" on this site), promoting things that undermine the innocence and purity of the young (explicit instruction in matters of the Sixth and Ninth Commandment that was specifically forbidden by Pope Pius XI in Divini Illius Magistri in 1929), recruiting, coddling and protecting men steeped in unrepentant perversity in the priesthood, telling Catholics that they have the right to withdraw food and water from their relatives and institutionalizing this act of murder as a pretty standard practice in many Catholic hospitals and hospices, pushing the envelope on the liturgical revolution with a demonic fury, deconstructing the truths of the Faith into meaninglessness, denying dogmas contained in the Deposit of Faith, and embracing every known public enemy of Christ while they castigate the defenders of Tradition.

When you think about it, though, it makes perfect sense for those who have aborted the Faith to welcome those who believe in the killing of babies, both by surgical and chemical means, to speak at so-called Catholic institutions of learning. We must pray for the day when some pope is going to regain the actual, daily governance of the Church in her human elements, saying to these nefarious enemies of Christ and promoters of sin, "Go, and speak no more."

In the meantime, we pray for Holy Mother Church as she suffers attacks upon the truths deposited in her by her Divine Bridegroom, offering up the sufferings of this present moment as consecrated slaves of Our Lady's Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart, to whom belongs the Triumph promised in her Fatima Message. Let us never lose heart as we united ourselves to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus through that same Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us.

Saint John of God, pray for us.

The Report on the Statement of the World Federation Federation of Catholic Medical Associations

ROME, MARCH 7, 2005 ( Zenit.org ).- If Terri Schiavo "can be condemned to death," every person whose life is considered of insufficient quality by a guardian or court could face euthanasia, warns a Catholic organization.

The World Federation of Catholic Medical Associations (FIAMC) issued its warning Sunday in regard to the case of the brain-damaged Florida woman whose husband has been in an intense legal battle to stop her artificial feeding.

"She is not guilty of any crime, except to a burden for her husband and for a selfish society," said Dr. Gian Luigi Gigli, president of FIAMC, of Schiavo.

"The real core of the problem is the attempt to decide about the right to life of a human being, not on the basis of her/his dignity, but on an external evaluation of the quality of life," Gigli said.

"The importance of this case goes beyond this deplorable circumstance," his statement continued. "It will open the floodgates to euthanasia in the United States, at all ages, without even a legislative decision.

FIAMC "strongly appeals to the United States authorities to react immediately and effectively to save Terri's life" and urges U.S. bishops "to mobilize every resource and influence of the Catholic Church to counteract this impending tragedy."

Care to respond, Bishop Lynch? We're still waiting for you to comment on Cardinal Martino's unequivocal support for Mrs. Schiavo's absolute right to food and water. Are you willing now to condemn the Florida law that is being used to threaten her life as unjust and immoral? The whole Catholic world is looking at you, Bishop Lynch. And what it sees at present is not a pretty picture at all. An innocent woman is receiving help from a curial cardinal and from medical professionals around the world while her shepherd says that the "decision" in her case rests with her faithless husband. Not a pretty picture at all. Saint Robert Bellarmine, continue to pray for Bishop Robert Lynch.
















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