Monday 23rd April 2018

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Catholic Replies

March 10, 2017 Our Catholic Faith No Comments

Editor’s Note: One of our readers, D.M. of Virginia, has forwarded a letter that he had published in his diocesan paper, the Arlington Catholic Herald, regarding President Trump’s executive order on immigration. D.M. was responding to two articles in the paper. Here are his comments:
“The reactions reported by the Herald from Church leaders, the USCCB, lay Catholics, political leaders, and others I found not to be at all commensurate with the executive order and its intention. I suspect that most, if not all, of the protests came from people who had not bothered to read the text of the executive order, but rather relied on reports from a media that apparently have considerable animosity toward our president and are rather quick to bring heavy criticism on his presidency. Here is a portion of the order that explains its purpose:
“‘In order to protect Americans, the United States must ensure that those admitted to this country do not bear hostile attitudes toward it and its founding principles. The United States cannot, and should not, admit those who do not support the Constitution, or those who would place violent ideologies over American law. In addition, the United States should not admit those who engage in acts of bigotry or hatred (including ‘honor’ killings, other forms of violence against women, or the persecution of those who practice religions different from their own), or those who would oppress Americans of any race, gender, or sexual orientation.’
“Were I to rely on the Herald for news of this matter, I would assume that the executive order was unlawful, un-American, in violation of Church teaching, not going to make our nation safer, a dark moment in U.S. history, cruel, devastating, and an animus toward Muslims. However, that is not at all what I understand after reading the actual order. In fact, after reading the order and the overreactions recorded in the Herald, I might easily assume that Church leadership and others must have no objection to immigrants coming into our country who are bigots, racists, violent persecutors of other religions, and do not respect our laws and our Constitution.”

Q. After Mass today, a woman asked me a question that seemed sort of strange. If there is a High Mass on a particular day, is there any rule that it must be the last Mass of the day (or at least of the morning)? Do you have anything on this? — T.L., Colorado.
A. Our recollection from our younger days is that High Mass (see description below) was usually celebrated as the final Mass on Sunday morning. Whether that was required, or whether it was the choice of the pastor, we don’t remember. Perhaps some reader can enlighten us about the “old days” and whether a High Mass celebrated today in the Extraordinary Form (Latin Mass) must be the last Mass of the day.
What about the distinction between High and Low Masses? According to our St. Joseph Daily Missal, which was published in 1959, “a High Mass is sung. A Low Mass is read. A High Mass is called Solemn Mass when it is sung with the help of a Deacon and Subdeacon. A High Mass sung by a priest, with the assistance of those Sacred Ministers, is known as Missa Cantata. Low Mass is one in which the priest, assisted by one server, recites in a speaking tone the parts that are sung in a High Mass. It is in fact the abridgment of the Solemn Mass which, in ancient days, was the normal way of celebrating the Holy Sacrifice. Low Mass was evidently introduced on account of the difficulty of securing the help of Deacon and Subdeacon.”
The Missal goes on to say that “in recent years the Dialogue Mass or Missa Recitata (which combines features of both High and Low Mass) has become quite popular. Its purpose is to join the faithful closer to the priest celebrating at the altar and to each other by the common recitation of certain prayers of the Mass. On September 3, 1958, the Sacred Congregation of Rites issued an Instruction greatly urging the use of the Dialogue Mass.”

Q. In your recent response about the unfortunate debate/controversy over the repose of the remains of Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, you wrote that he died in 1984. I believe, however, that he died in 1979. Thank you for your wonderful column all these many years. You have educated and enlightened many in the teachings of our precious Catholic faith. — J.K., Arizona.
A. You are correct that Archbishop Sheen died in 1979. He was 84 when he died, and we mixed up the two numbers. Thanks for catching this and for the kind words.

Q. In my youth, my mother often spoke of Therese Neumann. She said that she, like Padre Pio, carried the five wounds of Christ (the stigmata). Is this true? Was she ever canonized a saint or even considered for sainthood? – J.G., Minnesota.
A. Therese Neumann (1898-1962), the German stigmatist, was born on Good Friday in 1898 and received the wounds of Christ in 1926. Thousands of people visited her because of her bleeding wounds, her mystic visions, and her ability to exist for many years on no food at all, except Holy Communion. She was miraculously cured at different times from blindness, paralysis, and back ulcers and had not only the five wounds given to most stigmatists, but also the marks of the scourging and the crowning with thorns.
Therese also had the gifts of bilocation and prophecy. Her cause for beatification has been underway for years.
For more information about her, see books by Michael Freze (They Bore the Wounds of Christ), Johannes Steiner (The Visions of Therese Neumann and Therese Neumann: A Portrait), and Albert Vogl (Therese Neumann: Mystic and Stigmatist).

Q. Was it possible for Christ to have sinned even though He never did? — D.C., via e-mail.
A. No, it was never possible for Jesus to commit a sin because it would have meant that God was capable of sinning against Himself. Since Christ was a divine Person, whose every act was an act of God, He could not sin.
“In him there is no sin” (1 John 3:5), said John the Evangelist. And the Letter to the Hebrews says, “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who has similarly been tested in every way, yet without sin” (Heb. 4:15).
When we are tempted, our will wavers and we find ourselves leaning toward evil. There was no wavering will in Christ, no inclination toward sin, and no struggle in choosing between good and evil. Jesus had both a human will and a divine will, but as the Third Council of Constantinople (680-681) taught, His human will followed His divine will “without resistance or reluctance” (cf. Catechism of the Catholic Church, n. 475).
So why did Jesus subject Himself to temptations (cf. Matt. 4:1-11 and Luke 22:39-46)? Perhaps to show us how to overcome them in our own lives. “Because he himself was tested through what he suffered,” says Hebrews (2:18), “he is able to help those who are being tested.”

Q. Our Blessed Mother told the children of Fatima that their young friend Amelia would remain in Purgatory until the end of time. Does that mean that our prayers and plenary indulgences can’t really help the souls in Purgatory? — C.S., Arizona.
A. No. It is a clear teaching of the Church that we can offer plenary indulgences for the souls in Purgatory and, if all the conditions are carried out perfectly, the souls for whom we are offering them will indeed be released from their time of purification so that they can experience the joys of Heaven.
Amelia must have been sorry for whatever sins she had committed or she wouldn’t have been in Purgatory. But only God knows why she would have to remain there until the end of the world.

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Catholic priest killed while hearing confessions in Mexico

April 21 (UPI) — A Roman Catholic priest was killed Friday in the west-central Mexican state of Jalisco, the second priest murdered within one week in the country. Juan Miguel Contreras Garcia, 33, was performing the sacrament of penance when attacked…Continue Reading

Pope Francis to new priests: Be like Jesus the Good Shepherd

Vatican City, Apr 22, 2018 / 05:29 am (CNA/EWTN News).- On Sunday Pope Francis ordained 16 men to the priesthood, reminding them to be like Jesus the Good Shepherd in the way they serve the members of their spiritual flock…Continue Reading

20 April 2007 – Msgr. Richard Schuler – RIP

Today is the anniversary of the death of Msgr. Richard Schuler, a well-known Church musician and pastor for many years of the Church of St. Agnes in St. Paul, MN. This was a man who fought the good fight, in…Continue Reading

German bishops deny Pope nixed their plan for intercommunion with Protestants

April 19, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – The German bishops are denying reports that Pope Francis has rejected their plan to give Holy Communion to Protestant spouses of Catholics. The plan, which was contained in a guide published by the German Episcopal Conference, justified giving…Continue Reading

Bill Banning ‘Conversion Therapy’ Passes California State Assembly

Legislation that would ban efforts to change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity passed in the California Assembly with a bipartisan vote of 50-14.

Priests are performing exorcisms over the phone, cardinal claims

Priests have been carrying out exorcisms over the phone as demand continues to rise, a Cardinal has said. Speaking at the Vatican’s annual exorcist training conference in Rome, Cardinal Ernest Simoni said priests are delivering prayers of liberation, part of…Continue Reading

Twitter suspends right-wing commentator Mark Dice for saying transsexualism is a mental illness

April 16, 2018 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Right-wing commentator Mark Dice, famous for YouTube video interviews with random passers-by in public spaces, says that his Twitter account was suspended Thursday of last week after he implied that transgenderism is a mental illness.…Continue Reading

Pope: ‘Troubled’ over Syria, praying for Alfie Evans

At the Regina Caeli, Pope Francis calls for greater commitment from the international community for a joint action for peace in Syria. He also asks that Alfie, who is suffering from a degenerative disease and whom doctors want to deny…Continue Reading

There’s no ‘bridge’ between modernism and faithful Catholicism

April 13, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – The Catholic Church today is suffering greatly from a split among the faithful.  This split is evident in matters pertaining to the liturgy, doctrine, social teaching, morality, theology, and even in how the Faithful view…Continue Reading

Trump Unleashes Military Strikes on Syria Over Chemical Attack

President Donald Trump said he had approved military strikes on Syria in retaliation for an apparent chemical attack by the regime of Bashar al-Assad on a rebel town. “A short time ago I ordered the United States armed forces to…Continue Reading

Full text of Pope Francis’ letter to Chilean bishops

Vatican City, Apr 11, 2018 / 04:16 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- In a letter addressed to Chile’s bishops, Pope Francis admitted to making “serious mistakes” in handling the nation’s massive sex abuse crisis and asked for forgiveness. The pope summoned Chile’s…Continue Reading

Citing growing interest in Traditional Latin Mass, Archbishop Chaput creates quasi-parish

Philadelphia, Pa., Apr 12, 2018 / 12:49 am (CNA/EWTN News).- A new quasi-parish for Catholics interested in the Traditional Latin Mass will open in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia at a church that had been part of a 2014 parish merger.…Continue Reading

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Interview With Cardinal Burke . . . Discriminating Mercy: Defending Christ And His Church With True Love

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  By DON FIER (Editor’s Note: His Eminence Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke, Patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta and Founder of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, Wis., graciously took time out of his busy schedule to grant The Wanderer a wide-ranging interview during a recent visit to the Shrine. Included among the topics…Continue Reading

Developing Lives Of Peace After The Heart Of Mary

By RAYMOND LEO CARDINAL BURKE (Editor’s Note: His Eminence Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke delivered the address below at the 32nd Annual Church Teaches Forum, “The Message of Fatima: Peace for the World,” Galt House, Louisville, Ky., July 22, 2017. The address is reprinted here with the kind permission of Cardinal Burke. All rights reserved. This is part one of the…Continue Reading

Catechism

Today . . .

Chemical suffocation? How Alder Hey doctors want Alfie Evans to die.

LIVERPOOL, England, April 22, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) — Alfie Evans will be given Midazolam and Fentanyl when his life-support is removed. Thomas Evans published part of a legal document today that explains how the Alder Hey Children’s NHS Foundation Trust plans to end his son’s life. LifeSiteNews reported on Friday that Alfie’s life-support is scheduled to be removed on Monday, April 23. That information is under a publication ban in England. The document Evans published states: “Wit

Of Truth and Idols

Pope Francis celebrated and preached at the Chrism Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica on Holy Thursday morning. He addressed the concelebrating priests on the themes of the closeness of God and the closeness that priests should have to their people. This priestly closeness is “an attitude that engages the whole person.” He praised street priests“who are ‘close’, available, priests who are there for people, who talk to everyone.” Closeness, he believes, is “the key to m  

Spiritual guidance belongs in politics, Bishop Tobin says

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From The Heart of a Young Father

Bishops get a lot of unsolicited mail from strangers, some of it pleasant, some of it much less so. It goes with the job. But every once in a while a letter comes in that’s worth sharing with a wider audience. Last month, in preparation for the October 2018 synod, roughly 300 young adults from around the world gathered in Rome to discuss their views of faith and the Church. The result was a valuable…Continue Reading

Mother killed on Southwest flight was firm believer in Catholic schools

WASHINGTON (CNS) — Tributes from business leaders and politicians alike described Jennifer Riordan — the 43-year-old passenger who died April 17 from injuries suffered on Southwest Flight 1380 when its engine exploded — as a devoted mother, community leader, mentor and volunteer. Riordan, a Wells Fargo executive from New Mexico, was a “thoughtful leader who has long been a part of th

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Christendom Celebrates 40 Years With D.C. Gala

By ZACHARY SMITH Christendom College celebrated its 40th Anniversary with a gala dinner dance on April 14, hosting close to 500 guests at the historic Mayflower Hotel in Washington, D.C. Joining special guests Sen. Rick Santorum, Francis Cardinal Arinze, His Imperial and Royal Highness Imre of Habsburg-Lorraine, Arlington Bishop Michael Burbidge, and radio personality Patrick…Continue Reading

Trump: Prisoner Of The War Party?

By PATRICK J. BUCHANAN “Ten days ago, President Trump was saying ‘the United States should withdraw from Syria.’ We convinced him it was necessary to stay.” Thus boasted French President Emmanuel Macron on April 14, adding, “We convinced him it was necessary to stay for the long term.” Is the U.S. indeed in the Syrian…Continue Reading

Maria Gaetana Agnesi… A Beautiful Mind (And Spirit)

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A Salute To Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI On His 91st Birthday

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A Book Review… Edith Stein’s Love Of Wisdom

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Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

A Leaven In The World… Amid Weeds, Fruit That Will Last

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The Sacraments Instituted By Christ . . . More On Christ As The Fulfillment Of The Old Law

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM Part 25 The Sacrifice of the Cross was a true and perfect sacrifice. It was unique, because in the Sacrifice of the Cross, Our Lord Jesus Christ was at once the Priest and the Victim, the one who offers, and the one who is offered; being divinely chosen and appointed for each of these offices.…Continue Reading

Blessed Are The Poor In Spirit

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Catholic Replies

Editor’s Note: In a recent reply, we stated that “bishops installed by the Chinese Communists are not true bishops, cannot legitimately ordain priests, and cannot confect the sacraments, including the Holy Eucharist.” However, Fr. E.B.C. of Pennsylvania wrote to say that we are guilty of “if not an error, at least a lack of clarity.” He offered the following comments…Continue Reading

Raymond Cardinal Burke… Pope Francis Is “Increasing The Confusion”

(Editor’s Note: Below is the full text of an April 5 interview Raymond Cardinal Burke granted to an Italian Catholic publication, La Nuova Bussola Quotidiana. LifeSiteNews reprinted that interview with permission of Riccardo Cascioli, La Nuova Bussola Quotidiana’s editor, and we provide it here. All rights reserved. (Diane Montagna did the translation for LifeSiteNews.) + + + ROME (LifeSiteNews) —…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Pedro Calungsod

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Catholic Heroes… St. Agnes Of Montepulciano

By CAROLE BRESLIN When St. Therese of Lisieux was only 15 years old, she begged her father to let her enter a convent. Her parents, Saints Louis Martin and Marie-Azélie Guérin, were faithful Catholics and raised their children to cherish the religious life. About six hundred years before St. Therese was born, another saint had the same ambition: to join…Continue Reading