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June 6, 2004

Roman Myopia

by Thomas A. Droleskey

Several recent published interviews with Dario Cardinal Castrillion Hoyos, the Prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy and the President of Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, have reflected His Eminence's concern for the treatment of traditional Catholics. While His Eminence's concerns are no doubt sincere, the tone of his remarks reflects the yet prevailing Roman view that a love for the Traditional Latin Mass, while commendable and worthy of respect and all due consideration from ecclesiastical authorities, is not essential for the restoration of right order within the Church and thus the world. This fatally flawed view of things demonstrates once more the myopia of Roman officials, men who have convinced themselves that the Novus Ordo Missae is not in and of itself responsible for the devastation of the Faith throughout the world and that the Second Vatican Council has not been an complete and total disaster for the Catholic Church in every respect imaginable.

Although Cardinal Hoyos expressed his own personal solicitude for traditional Catholics and his own appreciation for the Traditional Latin Mass, he did not address directly the idea of an Apostolic Administration to afford Latin Rite Catholics their rights under Quo Primum to have unlimited access to the Immemorial Mass of Tradition without any conditions or restrictions whatsoever. His Eminence also expressed exasperation with the criticism directed at Vatican officials by some traditional Catholics, singling out, for example, the press conference held in Rome four months ago by His Excellency, the Most Reverend Bernard Fellay, in which the current superior of the Priestly Fraternity of the Society of St. Pius X denounced the ecumenical efforts of Pope John Paul II in very direct and uncompromising terms. Cardinal Hoyos more or less implied that such criticisms do not help the cause of traditional Catholics and/or the Traditional Latin Mass in Rome.

With all due respect to a curial cardinal, this traditional Catholic critic of Vatican policies must raise some serious objections to the tenor of His Eminence's recently published interviews. Cardinal Hoyos's failure to see and/or to admit the reality of our ecclesiastical situation makes it appear as though those who criticize the Holy See are simply cranks who will never be satisfied with anything the Vatican does. This is simply untrue. Indeed, it is an effort to try to put pressure on traditionalists who refuse to be satisfied with the penurious crumbs offered to them by Vatican officials into backing off from their criticism lest all olive branches extended to the cause of the Traditional Latin Mass be withdrawn.

There are thus several questions I would like to pose to Cardinal Hoyos as a result of his recently published interviews:

1) Does Pope Saint Pius V's Papal Bull, Quo Primum, give every Latin Rite priest the absolute right to offer the Traditional Latin Mass without permission from any ecclesiastical authority?

2) Does Quo Primum give every Latin Rite Catholic the absolute right to assist at the Immemorial Mass of Tradition wherever it is offered by a validly ordained priest who is not a sedevacantist? Are not the conditions attached by the Holy See in 1984 to the offering of and attendance at the Traditional Latin Mass unjust and invalid on their face?

3) Is Mr. Michael Davies correct when he states that the Traditional Latin Mass is the baptismal birthright of every Latin Rite Catholic?

4) Has it not been proved beyond any reasonable doubt, especially by the recent research of Father Romano Tomassi, that Archbishop Annibale Bugnini's Consilium misrepresented the origins of the component parts of the Novus Ordo Missae?

5) Is it not true that the prayers found in the Novus Ordo Missae, both in the Ordinary of the Mass and in the propers for the Sundays of the year and the feast days of the saints, express less fully the truths of the Catholic Faith, especially as it relates to the need for man to do penance for his sins and the possibility that he could lose his soul for all eternity--and by refusing to include references to the miracles performed by the saints?

6) Is it an act of disloyalty for a Catholic to point out the facts about the Novus Ordo Missae and the doctrinal problems with documents of the Second Vatican Council and the postconciliar era?

7) Must Catholics remain silent in the face of sacrileges such as the one that took place in the Chapel of the Apparitions in the Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima in Portugal on May 5, 2004, when Hindu "priests" offer worship to their false gods?

8) Must traditional Catholics remain silent in the face of sacrileges and offenses to the Catholic Faith in order to maintain themselves in "good standing" with the Holy See and so as not to threaten the the highly conditioned offering of the Traditional Latin Mass under the 1984 indult and under the Holy Father's 1988 Ecclesia Dei motu proprio?

9) How can Bishop Bernard Fellay of the Society of Saint Pius X be faulted for criticizing Vatican policies promoting "ecumenism" when the very spirit underlying this ecumenism was condemned consistently by the Church throughout her history right through the pontificate of Pope Pius XI?

10) Must traditional Catholics suspend their reason in order to accept positivist statements emanating from the Holy See that are in conflict with the authentic patrimony of the Church and do not reflect the actual reality of the Church's situation today?

11) Why is it that truly schismatic groups (the Orthodox churches, the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association) are treated with great deference by the Holy See while the Society of Saint Pius X, which dissents from not one whit of anything contained in the Deposit of Faith, and other traditional Catholics who resist quite openly the regime of novelty that has devastated the Catholic Faith are considered disloyal and schismatic for holding fast to the doctrine and tradition the Apostles received from the hands of Our Lord Himself?

12) Was His Eminence, Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, correct when he called the Second Vatican Council "the anti-Syllabus of Errors"? Is it therefore wrong for a Catholic to use Pope Pius IX's compendium of Modernist errors to point out the problems posed by the language of the conciliar and postconciliar documents and various papal pronouncements?

There are many other questions, obviously, that could be asked. The fact remains, however, that Cardinal Hoyos wants traditional Catholics to accept the "different sensitivities" that exist within the Church today without insisting that the regime of novelty responsible for the devastation of the Catholic Faith cease and desist at once. It is almost as though His Eminence believes that a sort of "dialectic" can exist in the Church wherein those of divergent theological and liturgical bents within the Latin Rite of the Church can somehow produce a synthesis of "sensitivities" whose fruits will be peace and brotherhood as we agree to disagree about matters touching upon the Deposit of Faith and the proper, fitting worship of the Father through the Son in Spirit and in Truth.

I, for one, have come to realize that the approach taken by the bishops of the Society of Saint Pius X, as well as the approach taken by The Remnant and Catholic Family News and various other publications, including Father Nicholas Gruner's The Fatima Crusader, over the past thirty-seven years or so, has been the correct one. That is, it is vital for lies and misrepresentations to be exposed as such. It is vital for assaults on the Deposit of Faith and the fitting worship of the Blessed Trinity be termed by their proper names. This must be done not because any of us who do these things are one bit better than our ecclesiastical authorities or that we believe that the sheer force and volume of our work will somehow repair our problems and restore Tradition to its rightful place as the only guiding force within the Church. This must be done if for no other reason than to try to help a few souls here and there recognize truth for what it is, to say nothing of reminding those possessed of a spiritual myopia in Rome that Catholics are still able to use the gift of reason, enlightened by sanctifying grace and by the patrimony of the Church's authentic tradition, to reject and to resist the Modernist forces at work within the Church today. Tradition and Modernism cannot coexist in the Church. The fight for Tradition involves more than the work of restoring the Traditional Latin Mass; it involves the restoration of the entirety of the Catholic Faith that is best expressed and protected in the Immemorial Mass of Tradition.

We have begun the Time after Pentecost in the liturgical calendar of Tradition. The great Feast of Corpus Christi will be celebrated this Thursday, June 10, followed in eight days by the Feast of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus. These are opportunities for us to be reminded of the fact that we must be on our knees in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament, in which beats the Sacred Heart, to make reparation for our own sins and for those of the whole world--and to pray most actively and faithfully for the restoration of Tradition without compromise as the foundation of Catholic evangelization and worship. Each of us in need of conversion on a daily basis. Each of us must seek out the graces made available to us in the Sacrament of Penance very frequently. Each us is in need of increasing the fervor with which we receive Our Lord in Holy Communion and of making time to spend adoring Him in His Real Presence. While it is important to point out the problems we face for the reasons enumerated in the preceding paragraph, we must also understand that it is only by surrendering ourselves in prayer to God through Our Lady, who is present at every offering of Holy Mass and who prays with us before her Divine Son in the tabernacle (along with all of the other saints and all of the angels), that we can transcend our human emotions and come to offer everything about our contemporary ecclesiastical situation to the Blessed Trinity through Our Lady's Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart.

For this reason, therefore, it is most efficacious to pray the Litany of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus every day during this month of June, dedicated as it is to the Sacred Heart, but especially in the days leading up to the Feast of Corpus Christi and the Feast of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus. All temptations to surrender to bitterness and cynicism will evaporate if we but trust completely in the Sacred Heart and that heart out of which It was formed, the Immaculate Heart of Mary. We will never learn until eternity, please God we die in a state of sanctifying grace, how our little efforts to intensify our Eucharistic piety and Marian devotions helped to plant the seeds for the restoration of Tradition, which will occur fully only when some pope actually does consecrate Russia explicitly and publicly to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. We are meant to be used as instruments, no matter how unworthy as a result of our sins and selfishness, to bring about the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart and thus the restoration of Christendom and the Social Reign of Christ the King.

While praying that Cardinal Hoyos will indeed come to recognize the absurdity of the conciliarist religion and Tradition coexisting in the one, true Church Our Lord founded upon the Rock of Peter, the Pope, we must nevertheless always be conscious of our need to remain faithful to the Deposit of Faith by cooperating with the graces won for us on Calvary by the shedding of Our Lord's Most Precious Blood and by beseeching Our Lady to help us to remain confident in the true Faith no matter the problems that besiege the true Church at present.

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us.

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us.

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us.

Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us.



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