Saturday 28th January 2023

Home » Our Catholic Faith » Currently Reading:

The Legacy Of BXVI

January 12, 2023 Our Catholic Faith No Comments

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK

At the end of Pope Benedict’s earthly sojourn with his death on the last day of 2022, we are moved to look back with gratitude upon his life and legacy. It is indeed a rich one, blessed with a fruitfulness indicating the Lord’s good pleasure in the labors of his humble servant.
At the cusp of a new year it was as if, with his last breath, our beloved Pope Emeritus delivered his final homily about the brevity of our lives in comparison with the great treasure of the eternal Kingdom which awaits us. His words were always carefully and lovingly chosen, with a desire to effectively communicate the Lord and His Gospel. In the end we witness the truth that it was in fact his life that was, of all his works, the most eloquent.
The sadness we experience at his passing is mixed with the joy of having known him and benefited from his gifts. He was brought by the Lord’s Providence from his native Germany to the heart of the Church in Rome where he faithfully served his good friend Pope John Paul II for many years. A guardian for the right teaching of the faith, he was trained well for his greatest role of humble servanthood in the vineyard which he accepted upon his election as Supreme Pontiff.
He first came to my attention many years ago when, as a young Army officer on active duty in Texas, his book-length interview, first known as The Ratzinger Report, made something of a ripple in the popular press. I obtained a copy through interlibrary loan from Southern Methodist University and read it with great curiosity.
I had been at that time continuing my discernment of the priesthood while serving in the military to “pay back” my four-year college scholarship. I was experiencing some skepticism as do many,there always being plenty of bad news about people in the Church, sinners all that we are.
Granted access in this way to his thought, I was immediately impressed with the simplicity, openness and transparency with which he revealed his heart and mind.
Here was a man of experience, at the heart of the Church, who knew much about the failures and unfaithfulness of so many in the life of the Church, and yet he remained ever hopeful and confident in her mission and purpose. His witness of priesthood which endures and is joyful despite Judas-like betrayals was startling and attractive. My youthful temptations to cynicism were thus shown to be more a product of inexperience than of maturing wisdom. My own vocation was, as a result, given fresh impetus. Only a few years later I would be accepted as a seminarian and military-chaplain candidate.
His 40 books, many papal and other writings and speeches have continued to impart the wisdom which is a fruit of the truths of our faith, divine Revelation transmitted as Scripture and Tradition.
Many more have benefited from the beauty, truth and goodness he came to know as a believer and continue to be touched and changed by his theological genius.
He forcefully reminded us of the necessity for the balance of faith and reason for the sake of our salvation in his Regensburg Address. Some raged irrationally against his gentle and charitable provocation on behalf of truth, in one such case murdering a Catholic religious woman as if to confirm unwittingly the veracity of his spoken witness.
God created our intelligence. Everything He reveals, to include Himself most perfectly in Christ, is compatible with and perfects the reason with which He endows every human person. Benedict was a prophet who spoke to us and to all the world in love. A shepherd after the heart of Christ, knowing our spiritual need and providing the remedy, he reminded us often that Faith builds on reason, the one never flourishing properly and effectively without the other.
His legacy will be felt and needed wherever reasonable dialog and sanity is not yet restored to the Church in all matters pertinent to salvation. Catholic worship according to Tradition will lead to restored moral reaching according to the same tradition that handed down our worship for nineteen centuries at the time the changes were first courted that continue to roil the Church, threatening her stability and mission.
Benedict’s persevering pastoral solicitude was evident in his efforts to seek peace among God’s people in the face of simmering conflicts in regard to the liturgy through his promulgation of Summorum Pontificum. It was a rare thing that Benedict would shrink from providing for authentic pastoral need and this was no exception.
Those differences tragically remain, and such solicitude is needed still. This was made ironically evident even during the Pontiff’s funeral. I watched the early morning coverage of the liturgy via Newsmax and with consternation happened to see an unfortunate incident caught by the camera during the Communion of the Mass. I saw a priest deny Holy Communion to a member of the faithful who had come forward, knelt and communicated wordlessly his desire to receive our Lord on the tongue. This, I believe, is something Pope Benedict would never do. This is not the pastoral love of souls reflective of the Good Shepherd and for the sake of which He sends out priests for his ministry.
Reception on the tongue of the Body and Blood of Christ is one of our venerable Catholic customs and always must be. Although we must never impose the wisdom of our tradition with the “sword” of condemnation we must continue to call for respect and openness toward it on the part of those who cruelly impose on unwilling members of the faithful what are merely options.
The Mass of Benedict’s childhood is still the Mass and is still Catholic, as he insisted with his characteristic gentleness. Thousands of priests all over the world are now celebrating the Traditional Latin Mass. They do so confidently, knowing it is Catholic and sacred because the wise and good Benedict shared the simple truth that it cannot now suddenly be no longer so. And the many Catholics who desire to in freedom have access to tradition remain ever grateful.
Many priests, many of them young, who continue to look to Benedict for vocational inspiration through the wisdom he generously shared have offered Traditional requiem Masses for him, as I witnessed in New York the week of his laying to rest. His influence will undoubtedly grow and bless the Church through these men who have been deeply influenced by his profound thought and writing, effective as it is beautiful.

Share Button

2019 The Wanderer Printing Co.

Twitter Feed

House Republicans approved 2 #ProLife measures.

The first measure would ban #Abortion on babies born alive and require the babies be given medical care and treatment. The other measure condemned a spurt of growing attacks against crisis pregnancy centers.

House Republicans Pass Pro-Life Bills

House Republicans on Jan. 11 approved two pro-life measures. The first measure passed by the House would ban abortion ...

www.theepochtimes.com

"I'm afraid that the West will die. There are plenty of signs. You are invaded,still,by other cultures & peoples,who will progressively dominate you by their numbers and change your culture, your convictions, your morality."~ Cardinal Robert Sarah

Load More...

Vatican and USCCB leave transgender policy texts unpublished

While U.S. bishops have made headlines for releasing policies addressing gender identity and pastoral ministry, guidelines on the subject have been drafted but not published by both the U.S. bishops’ conference and the Vatican’s doctrinal office, leaving diocesan bishops to…Continue Reading

Biden says Pope Francis told him to continue receiving communion, amid scrutiny over pro-abortion policies

President Biden said that Pope Francis, during their meeting Friday in Vatican City, told him that he should continue to receive communion, amid heightened scrutiny of the Catholic president’s pro-abortion policies.  The president, following the approximately 90-minute-long meeting, a key…Continue Reading

Federal judge rules in favor of Gov. DeSantis’ mask mandate ban

MIAMI (LifeSiteNews) – A federal judge this week handed Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis another legal victory on his mask mandate ban for schools. On Wednesday, Judge K. Michael Moore of the Southern District of Florida denied a petition from…Continue Reading

The Eucharist should not be received unworthily, says Nigerian cardinal

Priests have a duty to remind Catholics not to receive the Eucharist in a state of serious sin and to make confession easily available, a Nigerian cardinal said at the International Eucharistic Congress on Thursday. “It is still the doctrine…Continue Reading

Donald Trump takes a swipe at Catholics and Jews who did not vote for him

Donald Trump complained about Catholics and Jews who did not vote for him in 2020. The former president made the comments in a conference call featuring religious leaders. The move could be seen to shore up his religious conservative base…Continue Reading

Y Gov. Kathy Hochul Admits Andrew Cuomo Covered Up COVID Deaths, 12,000 More Died Than Reported

When it comes to protecting people from COVID, Andrew Cuomo is already the worst governor in America. New York has the second highest death rate per capita, in part because he signed an executive order putting COVID patients in nursing…Continue Reading

Prayers For Cardinal Burke . . . U.S. Cardinal Burke says he has tested positive for COVID-19

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — U.S. Cardinal Raymond L. Burke said he has tested positive for the virus that causes COVID-19. In an Aug. 10 tweet, he wrote: “Praised be Jesus Christ! I wish to inform you that I have recently…Continue Reading

Democrats Block Amendment Banning Late-Term Abortions, Stopping Abortions Up to Birth

Senate Democrats have blocked an amendment that would ban abortions on babies older than 20 weeks. During consideration of the multi-trillion spending package, pro-life Louisiana Senator John Kennedy filed an amendment to ban late-term abortions, but Democrats steadfastly support killing…Continue Reading

Transgender student wins as U.S. Supreme Court rebuffs bathroom appeal

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday handed a victory to a transgender former public high school student who waged a six-year legal battle against a Virginia county school board that had barred him from using the bathroom corresponding…Continue Reading

New York priest accused by security guard of assault confirms charges have now been dropped

NEW YORK, June 17, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — A New York priest has made his first public statement regarding the dismissal of charges against him.  Today Father George W. Rutler reached out to LifeSiteNews and other media today with the following…Continue Reading

21,000 sign petition protesting US Catholic bishops vote on Biden, abortion

More than 21,000 people have signed a letter calling for U.S. Catholic bishops to cancel a planned vote on whether President Biden should receive communion.  Biden, a Catholic, supports abortion rights and has long come under attack from some Catholics over that…Continue Reading

Bishop Gorman seeks candidates to fill two full time AP level teaching positions for the 2021-2022 school year in the subject areas of Calculus/Statistics and Physics

Bishop Thomas K. Gorman Regional Catholic School is a college preparatory school located in Tyler, Texas. It is an educational ministry of the Catholic Diocese of Tyler led by Bishop Joseph Strickland. The sixth through twelfth grade school provides a…Continue Reading

Untitled 5 Untitled 2

Attention Readers:

  Welcome to our website. Readers who are familiar with The Wanderer know we have been providing Catholic news and orthodox commentary for 150 years in our weekly print edition.


  Our daily version offers only some of what we publish weekly in print. To take advantage of everything The Wanderer publishes, we encourage you to su
bscribe to our flagship weekly print edition, which is mailed every Friday or, if you want to view it in its entirety online, you can subscribe to the E-edition, which is a replica of the print edition.
 
  Our daily edition includes: a selection of material from recent issues of our print edition, news stories updated daily from renowned news sources, access to archives from The Wanderer from the past 10 years, available at a minimum charge (this will be expanded as time goes on). Also: regularly updated features where we go back in time and highlight various columns and news items covered in The Wanderer over the past 150 years. And: a comments section in which your remarks are encouraged, both good and bad, including suggestions.
 
  We encourage you to become a daily visitor to our site. If you appreciate our site, tell your friends. As Catholics we must band together to rediscover our faith and share it with the world if we are to effectively counter a society whose moral culture seems to have no boundaries and a government whose rapidly extending reach threatens to extinguish the rights of people of faith to practice their religion (witness the HHS mandate). Now more than ever, vehicles like The Wanderer are needed for clarification and guidance on the issues of the day.

Catholic, conservative, orthodox, and loyal to the Magisterium have been this journal’s hallmarks for five generations. God willing, our message will continue well into this century and beyond.

Joseph Matt
President, The Wanderer Printing Co.

Untitled 1

Catechism

Today . . .

Catholic journalist George Neumayr dies in Africa

COTE D’IVOIRE (LifeSiteNews) – George Neumayr, an author and journalist who fearlessly exposed corruption in the Catholic Church, died of malaria last night. He was 50. He had been in Africa since December 26, 2022, studying Christianity there and “what the Church in the West could learn from it, both good and bad,” according to his journalism fund updates and several articles he wrote from the former French colony.

Cardinal Müller slams Pope Francis’ ‘political’ laicization of Fr. Pavone

ROME (LifeSiteNews) – Cardinal Gerhard Müller strongly defended Fr. Frank Pavone and slammed Pope Francis’ laicization of the renowned pro-life priest in an exclusive interview with LifeSiteNews. Cardinal Müller, the former head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the top Vatica

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI dies at Age 95

Funeral Mass to be held January 5.

Cardinals block appointment of Heiner Wilmer as Prefect of the DDF

Cardinal Luis Ladaria Ferrer, the prefect for the Doctrine of the Faith who was still in office, had received his mandate in an unexpected way in the summer of 2017. Until then, the Spanish Jesuit had been secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, i.e. the right hand of the prefect. At the time, the prefect was still Cardinal Gerhard Müller, the former bishop of Regensburg, whom Pope Benedict XVI had appointed…Continue Reading

Merry Christmas and a Blessed New Year!

Neither Left Nor Right, But Catholic . . . Bold Steps Needed To Address Illegal Immigration

By STEPHEN M. KRASON One of the ways in which the rule of law has been utterly flouted by the Biden administration has been its unwillingness to seriously enforce U.S. immigration law. In fact, the current crisis at the southern border is largely due to Biden’s signaling, as soon as he took office, that people…Continue Reading

McCarrick’s Lawyers Say He’s Not Competent To Stand Trial

By JOE BUKURAS MDEDHAM, Mass. (CNA) — Former cardinal Theodore McCarrick is in “significant” mental decline and may not be fit to stand trial for allegedly sexually abusing a 16-year-old boy, his attorneys say in a new court filing. The legal team for the 92-year-old ex-prelate said it plans to file a motion to dismiss…Continue Reading

Pregnancy Is Not A Disease… No One Could Observe This In Contemporary America

By R.T. NEARY “Follow the science” has been the mandate since 2019 in this once-united nation that is still officially entitled The United States of America. “Experts” have been featured on TV screens voicing this as Gospel.Public dialogue has centered on the reality of a threat posed by a living organism present in our environment.…Continue Reading

Death Of Cardinal George Pell

By RAYMOND CARDINAL BURKE With the sudden death of Cardinal George Pell, the Church has lost the earthly company of a wise, loving, joyful, and courageous shepherd. I have lost the earthly company of a good friend and example in the Sacred College of Cardinals. Having visited at length with Cardinal Pell on the afternoon…Continue Reading

Joining The Communion Of Saints

By DONALD DeMARCO Clare Boothe Luce (1903-1987) was truly a Renaissance woman. She won a seat in Congress and held an ambassadorship. She was the managing editor of Vanity Fair. As an author, her writings extended from drama and screen scenarios to fiction, journalism, and war reportage. As a pro-life stalwart, she wrote for The…Continue Reading

Advertisement

Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

Catholic Replies

Q. When Joseph and Mary came to the inn in Bethlehem, the innkeeper said that there was no room and told them to “go on.” That night an angel of the Lord came to Joseph in his dream and said, “It is you who shall go on and on.” Is this true? — J.B., Pennsylvania.A. Not according to the Gospel…Continue Reading

New Book By Ganswein On BXVI

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK Part 2 Upon his death we shared the witness that Pope Benedict lived in the words he uttered. Archbishop Georg Ganswein’s book Nothing But the Truth recounting his life with the great Pope is now out in bookstores. Here I share some vignettes of that volume from an advance unofficial English translation.In October 1978 the…Continue Reading

Basics Of Christian Anthropology

By MSGR. CHARLES POPE Part 1 (Editor’s Note: Msgr. Charles Pope posted this article on January 13 and it is reprinted here with permission.) + + Anthropology is, most simply, the science or study of human beings through time and space. Different specialties focus on the analysis of biological/physiological characteristics and the examination of societies/cultures. In the religious sense, anthropology…Continue Reading

Grace And Humility

BY FR. ROBERT ALTIER Fourth Sunday In Ordinary Time (YR A) Readings: Zeph. 2:3, 3:12-131 Cor. 1:26-31Matt. 5:1-12a In the first reading today, the Lord calls all the humble of the Earth to seek Him. Interestingly, He then calls them to seek justice and humility with the hope that they would be sheltered on the day of the Lord’s anger.…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

Editor’s Note: This series on the Bible is from the book Catholicism & Scripture. Please feel free to use the series for high schoolers or adults. We will continue to welcome your questions for the column as well. See the contact information at the end of this column. Special Course On Catholicism And Scripture (Chapter 11) Following the path of…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Peter Damian

By DEB PIROCH For those in search of a night free of insomnia, it’s said those with a clean conscience sleep blissfully. Yet, many of us know it is not quite that easy to vanquish insomnia and in truth, the longer one tries, the less one is inclined to fall sleep. At the least it can be exhausting, at the…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes… St. Dunstan

By DEB PIROCH Before St. Thomas Becket, the saint most likely to be invoked by an Englishman was St. Dunstan. He was successively appointed the abbot of Glastonbury, the bishop of Worcester, the bishop of London, archbishop of Canterbury and later, the bishop of Winchester. Additionally, he was related to at least one archbishop and three bishops; perhaps being a…Continue Reading

Advertisement(2)