Opposing Sin Can Be The Near Occasion of Sin
Thomas A. Droleskey
A world where the Social Reign of Christ the King and Mary our Immaculate Queen is not recognized by men in their individual lives and/or in the lives of their nations is one in which sin--and indifference to sin--will all the more prevail.
Yes, of course, we know that fallen human nature is at work in the souls of those who are striving to climb the ladder of personal sanctity in cooperation with the graces won for us by the shedding of every single drop of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ's Most Precious Blood on the wood of the Holy Cross and that flows into their souls through the loving hands of Our Lady, she who is the Mediatrix of All Graces. We know that the era of Christendom itself in the Middle Ages was fraught with the consequences wrought by the ravages of Original Sin and Actual Sins. Fine.
It is nevertheless the case that human beings are more prone to sin--and are given greater enticements to sin--in a world steeped in the lies of naturalism. Such a world is bound to descend sooner or later into the depths of open depravity. The old pagan superstitions must resurface over the course of time in a world where people do not submit themselves, both individually in their own lives and collectively in their nations, to the Deposit of Faith that Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ entrusted exclusively to the Catholic Church He Himself founded upon the Rock of Peter, the Pope, for Its eternal safekeeping and infallible explication. Men who think that they have the civil "right" to do and say and think anything at all, even if what they do and say and think is contrary to Divine Revelation Itself and thus contrary to the good of their own souls and hence of all social order, will respect no authority, including that of the true Church, as binding upon their delusional belief in their own infallibility and impeccability.
Father Frederick Faber made this point in The Precious Blood:
All devotions have their characteristics; all of them have their own theological meanings. We must say something, therefore, upon the characteristics of the devotion to the Precious Blood. In reality the whole Treatise has more or less illustrated this matter. But something still remains to be said, and something will bear to be repeated. We will take the last first. Devotion to the Precious Blood is the devotional expression of the prominent and characteristic teaching of St. Paul. St. Paul is the apostle of redeeming grace. A devout study of his epistles would be our deliverance from most of the errors of the day. He is truly the apostle of all ages. To each age doubtless he seems to have a special mission. Certainly his mission to our is very special. The very air we breathe is Pelagian. Our heresies are only novel shapes of an old Pelagianism. The spirit of the world is eminently Pelagian. Hence it comes to pass that wrong theories among us are always constructed round a nuclear of Pelagianism; and Pelagianism is just the heresy which is least able to breathe in the atmosphere of St. Paul. It is the age of the natural as opposed to the supernatural, of the acquired as opposed to the infused, of the active as opposed to the passive. This is what I said in an earlier chapter, and here repeat. Now, this exclusive fondness for the natural is on the whole very captivating. It takes with the young, because it saves thought. It does not explain difficulties; but it lessens the number of difficulties to be explained. It takes with the idle; it dispenses from slowness and research. It takes with the unimaginative, because it withdraws just the very element in religion which teases them. It takes with the worldly, because it subtracts the enthusiasm from piety and the sacrifice from spirituality. It takes with the controversial, because it is a short road and a shallow ford. It forms a school of thought which, while it admits that we have an abundance of grace, intimates that we are not much better for it. It merges privileges in responsibilities, and makes the sovereignty of God odious by representing it as insidious. All this whole spirit, with all its ramifications, perishes in the sweet fires of devotion to the Precious Blood.
The time is also one of libertinage; and a time of libertinage is always, with a kind of practical logic, one of infidelity. Whatever brings out God's side in creation, and magnifies his incessant supernatural operation in it, is the controversy which infidelity can least withstand. Now, the devotion to the Precious Blood does this in a very remarkable way. It shows that the true significance in every thing is to be found in the scheme of redemption, apart from which it is useless to discuss the problems of creation. (Father Frederick Faber, The Precious Blood, written in 1860, republished by TAN Books and Publishers, pp. 258-259.)
Father Faber said in several sentences what it has taken me hundreds upon hundreds, if not thousands upon thousands, of pages to state. Indeed, one sentence summarizes the reality of the world as it is in the eyes of God:
It [devotion to the Precious Blood] shows that the true significance in every thing is to be found in the scheme of redemption, apart from which it is useless to discuss the problems of creation.
Yes, it is useless to discuss the problems of creation apart from the scheme of redemption. There is no naturalistic, secular, religiously indifferentist, non-denominational or inter-denominational way to address, no less "resolve" any human problems, whether personal or social. Catholics must think as Catholics. Catholics must speak as Catholics. Catholics must pray as Catholics with their fellow Catholics, not engage in the forbidden sin of "inter-religious" prayer. Catholics must act as Catholics. Catholics must put the Catholic Faith first and foremost in everything they do. The only "real" world is the world of the Faith. Everything else is an illusion created by the devil in the wake of the systematic, planned and carefully orchestrated overthrow of the Social Reign of Christ the King wrought by the Protestant Revolt and by the rise of Judeo-Masonry.
This is all so important to bear in mind whenever a particularly hideous blasphemy or sacrilege has been--or is about to be--committed against the Faith by the Judeo-Masonic cabal that controls the mass media. No manner of Americanist-style street protests and marches and other kinds of rallies and demonstrations do anything other than drum up publicity for the particular blasphemy or sacrilege making headlines at any particular point in time. Indeed, such demonstrations and rallies and protests and marches wind up inciting many participants to sin in many instances as they read the salacious details of the offensive theatrical stage play or motion picture or television show in question. Thoughts that should never cross our minds burn images in our mind's eye. Words that should never pass from our lips wind up being uttered freely, casually and in front of the ears of the innocent young. Wholesale sins against the virtue of Modesty are thus committed, all in the "good cause" of opposing evil.
The devil loves to whip us up into a frenzied state of hysteria over this or that "tree" (that is, a particular issue or event that is, no matter the gravity of the offense it represents, only a consequences of the forest of corruption that is the logical, inexorable, inevitable consequence of the overthrow of Christendom) precisely so that we will commit various sins, including those against the Faith itself as we place our "faith" in naturalistic solutions that never resolve anything convince people that the Americanist predisposition to "action" is the only way to address a given problem.
As Father Faber noted in The Precious Blood, however:
Now, this exclusive fondness for the natural is on the whole very captivating. It takes with the young, because it saves thought. It does not explain difficulties; but it lessens the number of difficulties to be explained. It takes with the idle; it dispenses from slowness and research. It takes with the unimaginative, because it withdraws just the very element in religion which teases them. It takes with the worldly, because it subtracts the enthusiasm from piety and the sacrifice from spirituality. It takes with the controversial, because it is a short road and a shallow ford. It forms a school of thought which, while it admits that we have an abundance of grace, intimates that we are not much better for it. It merges privileges in responsibilities, and makes the sovereignty of God odious by representing it as insidious.
Even in this time of apostasy and betrayal, ladies and gentlemen, God has given us true shepherds to guide us to Heaven as they administer into our immortal souls the graces won for us by the shedding of every single drop of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ's Most Precious Blood on the wood of the Holy Cross and that flow into our hearts and souls through the loving hands of Our Lady, the Mediatrix of All Graces. We must look to them for guidance and direction as to seek to understand and then to address the remote and proximate causes of the problems of Modernity, that era that is steeped in naturalism and rejects the truth that Catholicism is the one and only foundation of personal and social order. We must look to our true shepherds to help us keep our focus on the reality of First and Last Things, that is, the reality of the supernatural world of the Catholic Faith, the one and only true Faith, humbly submitting ourselves to their pastoral guidance and direction when some particularly egregious manifestation of Modernity's contempt for the Faith becomes a prominent issue.
This is important to bear in mind as various theatrical productions that mock the Faith (see By What Stretch of Logic?) are used by certain lay-run organizations to disseminate literature containing graphic descriptions of the offending material contained within those productions. Time that could be better spent before the Blessed Sacrament solemnly Exposed is wasted in the street protest. Donations that could be used for the support of fully traditional chapels and for the education of seminarians are thus siphoned off to pay for the literature--and for the recruiting efforts of the lay-run organizations, one of which, America Needs Fatima (an arm of the American Society in Defense of Tradition, Family and Property), is noted for stifling vocations to the priesthood as men live together to study and to organize the kinds of rallies and protests that appeals to the American spirit of "action" that is not necessarily the same thing in all instances as Catholic Action.
God does not want single young men living together--and in circumstances not exactly in line with Holy Poverty--in a sort of community life to organize rallies and protests. God does not want single young men spending their lives producing literature to be disseminated far and wide to the average Catholic that includes graphic descriptions of various blasphemous and sacrilegious offenses. God does not want single young men praying private litanies to the mother of the non-canonized founder of the "community" in which they are living and working. God wants single young Catholic men to consider first and foremost a vocation to the priesthood (the true priesthood) or the consecrated religious life. And God does not want fully traditional Catholics, of all people, to subordinate themselves to the ideas and schemes of a lay-run organization whose raison d'etre is premised upon a rejection of clerical direction and the implementation of the "counter-revolutionary vision" of its founder, which "vision" becomes a kind of religion in and of itself from which no one in the "community" may dissent legitimately as priest-supporters are cultivate to play their subordinate roles just as surely as they are by the methods used by the leaders of Focolare to subordinate conciliar priests to their interests.
We in the laity are to assist our shepherds in the battle against naturalism. Pope Pius XI, writing in Non Abbiamo Bisogno, June, 29, 1931, reminded us that Catholic Action is
the "participation and the collaboration of the laity with the Apostolic Hierarchy." Pope Saint Pius X had made this point in Il Fermo Proposito, June 11, 1905:
We must touch, Venerable Brethren, on another point of extreme importance, namely, the relation of all the works of Catholic Action to ecclesiastical authority. If the teachings unfolded in the first part of this letter are thoughtfully considered it will be readily seen that all those works which directly come to the aid of the spiritual and pastoral ministry of the Church and which labor religiously for the good of souls must in every least thing be subordinated to the authority of the Church and also to the authority of the Bishops placed by the Holy Spirit to rule the Church of God in the dioceses assigned to them. Moreover, the other works which, as We have said, are primarily designed for the restoration and promotion of true Christian civilization and which, as explained above, constitute Catholic Action, by no means may be considered as independent of the counsel and direction of ecclesiastical authority, especially since they must all conform to the principles of Christian faith and morality. At the same time it is impossible to imagine them as in opposition, more or less openly, to that same authority. Such works, however, by their very nature, should be directed with a reasonable degree of freedom, since responsible action is especially theirs in the temporal and economic affairs as well as in those matters of public administration and political life. These affairs are alien to the purely spiritual ministry. Since Catholics, on the other hand, are to raise always the banner of Christ, by that very fact they also raise the banner of the Church. Thus it is no more than right that they receive it from the hands of the Church, that the Church guard its immaculate honor, and that Catholics submit as docile, loving children to this maternal vigilance.
For these reasons it is evident how terribly wrong those few were who in Italy, and under Our very eyes, wanted to undertake a mission which they received neither from Us nor from any of Our Brethren in the episcopate. They promoted it not only without due homage to authority but even openly against the will of that authority, seeking to rationalize their disobedience by foolish distinctions. They said that they were undertaking their cause in the name of Christ; but such a cause could not be Christ's since it was not built on the doctrine of the Divine Redeemer. How truly these words apply: "He who hears you, hears me; and he who rejects you, rejects me." "He who is not with me is against me; and he who does not gather with me scatters." This is a doctrine of humility, submission, filial respect. With extreme regret We had to condemn this tendency and halt by Our authority this pernicious movement which was rapidly gaining momentum. Our sorrow was increased when We saw many young people of excellent character and fervent zeal and capable of performing much good if properly directed, and who are also very dear to Us, carelessly attracted to such an erroneous program.
We are not to permit ourselves to get whipped up into a frenzy over this or that "tree," writing out checks to lay-run organizations that live for the opportunities to implement their "counter-revolutionary" agenda, which never solves a blessed thing and convinces well-meaning Catholics that they have "done" something as they have committed, most unknowingly in most instances, sins against the virtue of Modesty by speaking about things that must never pass our lips.
Yes, people are certainly free to do with their time and their money as they see fit. Catholics, however, should look first and foremost to the direction provided by their shepherds, who have the obligation to weigh prayerfully and carefully how best to deal with particular offenses, and certainly warning the sheep of the flocks entrusted to their pastoral care to give no quarter whatsoever to a lay-run organization that pays its obeisance to the One World Church of conciliarism and refuses to admit that it is that counterfeit church's Modernist accommodation to the false, naturalistic, anti-Incarnational and semi-Pelagian spirit of Modernity that has made it all the more difficult for Catholics to see the world clearly through the eyes of the true Faith and thus to pray and to think and to act as Catholics at all times. Catholics must listen to their true shepherds as they warn them against becoming immersed in the details of this or that offensive theatrical production or motion picture or television program. It is enough for us to know that a warfare is being waged against our souls by the world, the Flesh and the devil, and the less immersed we are in the spirit of the world and in its naturalistic ways will be the more at peace we are in the midst of various "crises" as we commend all to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary.
What is lost on so many fully traditional Catholics, those who at least worship in chapels where no concessions are made to conciliarism although they may not understand the depth of the apostasies staring us all in the face, is that lay run organizations that sap vocations to the priesthood to live collectively and rather comfortably (to give a "good" and "credible" appearance to the world, of course) have become prominent in the various battles of the culture wars precisely because the "bishops" of the counterfeit church of conciliarism are, with some few exceptions now and again, deaf, dumb and blind in the midst of these battles. To be frank, most of these 'bishops" are on the wrong side of the culture wars. Thus it is that a lay-run organization steps forward and "organizes" events and distributes literature that incites people to commit sins against the virtue of Modesty and drains their time that should be spent in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament and to the Mother of God and their monetary resources that could be donated to the cause of the true Faith in the catacombs.
Father Faber wrote quite specifically about how the devil uses intentions to do good things as a trap to get us to sin:
Now let us try to get an idea of the interests of Jesus; else, how shall we be able to do anything to advance them? Men cannot work in the dark; they must know what they are about. You know what it is to have an interest. If you look over the world, you will see that everybody has some interest at heart and is working hard for it. There are almost as many interests in the world as they are men. Everyone you meet in the streets is going after something. You see it in his face, his quick eye and his rapid walk. Either it is political, or literary, or mercantile, or scientific, or fashionable, or simply ambitious,or dishonest. Still, whatever it is, every man has wedded the interest of his choice and is doing his duty to it. He works hard for it all day; he goes to bed with the thought of it and he wakes with it in the morning. Even on Sunday, it is rather his hand that is resting than his head or heart; they are full of interest. Look what men will do, singly or banded, to put down slavery, or to get free trade, or to compete for a larger order, or to carry the mails, or to make new railroads. It is plain that men have interests enough in the world, that they love them dearly and work for them manfully. Oh, that it were all for God, the good, the merciful, the eternal God!
The devil also has his interests in the world. He has been allowed to set up a kingdom in opposition to God, and like all sovereigns, he has a multitude of interests. Thus he has agents everywhere, active, diligent, unseen spirits swarming in the streets of the cities to push on his interests. They canvass laborers in the field. They see what they can do with the monk in his cloister and the hermit in his cell. Even in th churches, during Mass or Benediction, they are hard at work, plying their unholy trade. Our fellow men also, by thousands, let themselves out to him as agents; nay, numbers work in his interests for nothing; and what is more shocking still, many do his work and fancy it is God's work they are doing, it looks so good and blameless in their eyes. How many Catholics oppose good things or criticize good persons; yet they were never consent to be the devil's agents, if they really knew what they were about. These interests of the devil are very various. To cause mortal sin, to persuade to venial sin, to hinder grace, to prevent contrition, to keep back from Sacraments, to promote lukewarmness, to bring holy people and bishops and religious orders into disrepute and to stand in the way of vocations, to spread gossip, to distract people at prayer, to make men fall in love with the frivolities and fashions of the world, to get men to spend money on comforts, furniture, jewels, knickknacks, parrots, old china, fine dress, instead of on the poor Jesus Christ, to induce Catholics to worship great people and put their trust in princes, and fawn upon political parties in power, to make them full of criticism of each other, and quick as children to take scandal, to diminish devotion to our Blessed Lady, and to make people fancy divine love is an enthusiasm and an indiscretion: these are the chief interests of the devil. It is amazing with what energy he works at them, and with what consummate craft and dreadful ability he advances them in the world. It would be a thing to admire, if it did not make us afraid for our very souls, and if all things which are against God were not simply abominable and to be hated. The dark enemy of the Creator is mysteriously allowed a marvelous share of success in that creation which the All Holy once looked down upon and blessed in His unspeakable complacency. Men's interests put the interests of Jesus on one side, partly as troublesome, more often as insignificant. The devil's interests are directly opposed to those of Jesus, and where thy are successful, either debase them or kill them altogether.
Now, let us look at the interests of Jesus. Let us take a view of the whole Church, which is His Spouse. Look first into Heaven, the Church Triumphant. It is the interest of jesus that the glory of the most Holy Trinity should be increased in every possible manner and at every hour of the night and day; and this glory, which is called God's accidental glory, is increased by every good work, word and thought, every correspondence to grace, every resistance to temptation, every act of worship, every Sacrament rightly administered or humbly received, every act of homage and love to Mary, every invocation of the Saints, every bead of the Rosary, every Sign of the Cross, every drop of holy water, every pain patiently endured, every hash judgment meekly borne, every good wish, though it end only with the wishing, and never sees fulfillment--provided there be a devout intention along with all these things, and they are done in union with the merits of our sweet Lord. Every hour, at least so we trust, a new soul lands in Heaven from Purgatory or from earth, and begins its eternity of rapture and of praise. Each soul that swells the throng of worshippers, each silent voice added to the angelic choirs, is an increase to the glory of God; and so it is in the interest of Jesus to make these arrivals more frequent, and that they should bring more merits and higher degrees of love with them when they come. Even in Heaven the Confraternity ha work to do and power to do it. Heaven is one of our offices, and there is much business to be dispatched in its beautiful courts, business for the interests of Jesus, business which He has at heart, and therefore, which it behooves us to have in hand. (Father Frederick Faber, All For Jesus, published originally in 1854 and republished by TAN Books and Publishers, pp. 4-6.)
We must let our true shepherds teach us what is in the interests of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. We must render unto them the first share of whatever financial resources God has been good enough to bestow upon us. Yes, the first share, and if there's none left over for those of us in the laity who want to assist these shepherds in the battle against naturalism, so be it, no matter how bad our situation might be. The cause of administering true sacraments to the souls for whom Our Lord shed every single drop of His Most Precious Blood comes before all other causes, including my own and that of my family! And, most importantly, we must listen to our shepherds when they warn us about associating with groups or individuals who do not respect clerical authority, no less recognize the nonexistent authority of false shepherds, and who traffic in the salacious, enticing, whether or not they realize it, large numbers of people to commit sins against the virtue of Modesty in an effort to oppose various evils.
The devil wants to convince us that all of our "activity" and street protests, yes, even those where Our Lady's Most Holy Rosary is prayed, is "getting us" somewhere as well-meaning Catholics commit sins against the virtue of Modesty by reading and distributing literature with graphic descriptions that serve as enticements to others to sin, to say nothing of robbing our children of the innocence purity to which they are entitled and which we must go to great lengths to protect (starting by getting rid of televisions!), This is, as Father Faber alluded in in the quoted passages above from The Precious Blood and All for Jesus, deluding ourselves into thinking that that we can fight the devil on his own terms. We cannot.
Is Jerry Springer the Opera coming to your city? Follow your true shepherds. Pray Our Lady's Most Holy Rosary, spend time with her Divine Son before His Real Presence, offer up the crosses of your own daily lives to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus through her own Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart, and don't be immersed in the graphic details of this or that offensive production, especially not in front of the tender ears of children.
As one whose own circumspection in this regard has been lacking on occasion, especially in my "conservative" days as an indultarian, I am not condemning anyone else. I have enough sins of my own in this regard for which to make reparation to start casting stones at those who are today doing what I used to do years ago: get all "worked up" about an issue and speak in inappropriate, if not overtly immodest, ways that offend God perhaps even more than the offensive production or event about which we are scandalized. To wit, my article eight days ago about the decision of the State of California Supreme Court was phrased much differently than I would have phrased it in 1993 when I was writing for The Wanderer. And I have tried to place warnings in bold type on the home page of this site and on the articles page when articles dealing with scandalous behavior have been posted, recognizing my judgment in posting such articles might have been wrong, to be honest.
However, we are supposed to learn from our mistakes, which is why we need to listen to our shepherds when they offer a word of correction and/or seek to give us direction about how to fight the battle against naturalism on God's terms, not on the terms of the adversary himself, as they try to protect our own souls and those of our children from committing sins by opposing sins.
We can scandalize others by being scandalized. Opposing sin can be the near occasion of sin, which is why we need the direction of our shepherds to assist us to see the "big picture" of the simple fact that the world around us looks as it does because of the overthrow of the Social Reign of Christ the King and no amount of political activity or street protests is going to "civilize" the world. Catholicism is the one and only foundation of social order, a truth that numerous popes have taught us, including Pope Saint Pius X in Notre Charge Apostolique, August 15, 1910:
Here we have, founded by Catholics, an inter-denominational association [the Sillon] that is to work for the reform of civilization, an undertaking which is above all religious in character; for there is no true civilization without a moral civilization, and no true moral civilization without the true religion: it is a proven truth, a historical fact.
Remember the old Greyhound bus lines commercial jingle ("Go Greyhound, and leave the driving to us")? Well, here's a variation of that: "Trust your true shepherds, and leave the decisions (about how best to oppose naturalism and its manifestations) to them." We in the laity can assist our shepherds, as Pope Leo XIII noted in Sapientiae Christianae, January 10, 1890, but it must be stressed that we assist our shepherds without taking initiatives that are unapproved by them:
No one, however, must entertain the notion that private individuals are prevented from taking some active part in this duty of teaching, especially those on whom God has bestowed gifts of mind with the strong wish of rendering themselves useful. These, so often as circumstances demand, may take upon themselves, not, indeed, the office of the pastor, but the task of communicating to others what they have themselves received, becoming, as it were, living echoes of their masters in the faith. Such co-operation on the part of the laity has seemed to the Fathers of the Vatican Council so opportune and fruitful of good that they thought well to invite it. "All faithful Christians, but those chiefly who are in a prominent position, or engaged in teaching, we entreat, by the compassion of Jesus Christ, and enjoin by the authority of the same God and Savior, that they bring aid to ward off and eliminate these errors from holy Church, and contribute their zealous help in spreading abroad the light of undefiled faith.'' Let each one, therefore, bear in mind that he both can and should, so far as may be, preach the Catholic faith by the authority of his example, and by open and constant profession of the obligations it imposes. In respect, consequently, to the duties that bind us to God and the Church, it should be borne earnestly in mind that in propagating Christian truth and warding off errors the zeal of the laity should, as far as possible, be brought actively into play
The faithful would not, however, so completely and advantageously satisfy these duties as is fitting they should were they to enter the field as isolated champions of the faith. Jesus Christ, indeed, has clearly intimated that the hostility and hatred of men, which He first and foremost experienced, would be shown in like degree toward the work founded by Him, so that many would be barred from profiting by the salvation for which all are indebted to His loving kindness. Wherefore, He willed not only to train disciples in His doctrine, but to unite them into one society, and closely conjoin them in one body, "which is the Church,'' whereof He would be the head. The life of Jesus Christ pervades, therefore, the entire framework of this body, cherishes and nourishes its every member, uniting each with each, and making all work together to the same end, albeit the action of each be not the same. Hence it follows that not only is the Church a perfect society far excelling every other, but it is enjoined by her Founder that for the salvation of mankind she is to contend "as an army drawn up in battle array.'' The organization and constitution of Christian society can in no wise be changed, neither can any one of its members live as he may choose, nor elect that mode of fighting which best pleases him. For, in effect, he scatters and gathers not who gathers not with the Church and with Jesus Christ, and all who fight not jointly with him and with the Church are in very truth contending against God.
Is there a Rosary of reparation to be prayed publicly? Make a suggestion respectfully to your true bishop or your true priest. Let him decide the matter one way or the other. Is there are march to be organized to defend the honor and glory of God? Go to your shepherd. Let him decide the matter one way or the other. Is there to be a Holy Hour in reparation for offenses given to the Holy Name of Jesus and to His Immaculate Mother? Make it a point to listen to your shepherd when begs you to be there.
You see, it's real simple: we hear the shepherd's voice telling how us to oppose the lies of naturalism, responding as the simpletons that we are, the sheep of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ's true Sheepfold that is the Catholic Church. There will no enticements to sin, only merit to be earned as the consecrated slaves of that same Lord Jesus Christ through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of His Most Blessed Mother. This means that we must obey our shepherds when they tell us not to discuss certain subjects with other parishioners after Mass and when they tell us to be careful about what we say in the presence of our children.
Yes, true, our shepherds might be mistaken on this or that point now and again. They're only human. They may have placed too must trust in a subordinate who gave bad example, or they might have given the wrong advice in a personal situation, or they may have drawn the wrong conclusions when confronting a particular issue that did not confront moral theologians fifty or one hundred years ago. Do we abandon ship when they instruct us how to respond to a particular offense against Our Lord and His Most Blessed Mother? By no means.
As a very wise priest wrote to a Catholic who was upset with some true priests, it is the graces that flow from the Masses offered by those priests that will make it possible for them to "humbly correct what needs to be corrected." None of us is ever one hundred percent correct about everything, are we? We cannot excuse ourselves from following our shepherds in this time of apostasy and betrayal because their fallibility or their peccability is on display now and again! We need or shepherds to guide us home to Heaven, and we need to them to direct us in our battles against the world, the flesh and the devil, both individually and together with other fully traditional Catholics.
One of the ways that we can help our shepherds lead us in the battle against naturalism in this era of apostasy and betrayal is to have Masses said for them, and to offer our Rosaries for them as well as we can as slaves who have freely surrendered the merits of our prayers and actions to Our Lady to be disposed of as she sees fit. And by doing this, you see, we will help them as they help us to oppose sin, both in our own families and in the world around us, as befits redeemed creatures committed to the virtue of Modesty without making such opposition the near occasion of sin.
The final victory belongs to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Let us assist our shepherds as they direct us in the battles that will lead to that glorious victory of which Our Lady spoke in the Cova da Iria near Fatima, Portugal, ninety-one years ago.
If I may be so bold as to propose the following, isn't it time to pray a Rosary for our true bishops and true priests right about now?
Viva Cristo Rey!
Our Lady of the Rosary, us.
Saint Joseph, pray for us.
Saints Peter and Paul, pray for us.
Saint John the Baptist, pray for us.
Saint John the Evangelist, pray for us.
Saint Michael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Gabriel the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Raphael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saints Joachim and Anne, pray for us.
Saints Caspar, Melchior, and Balthasar, pray for us.
See also: A Litany of Saints