Thanks for calling about John’s death (only 53 years old!), even though it was 5:30 in the morning here in Italy. I am so sorry for John because he never made the decision to grow up and mature, and he developed a whole slew of excuses to not want to work and to be a burden to others which he was able to con with his intelligent lies and smooth talk as do many alcoholic and drug addicts. He never was able to hold a job for very long. But I have not lost hope in his eternal salvation, in particular, because with all of his faults, he had the humility to keep his brown scapular on which at least indicates a small sigh of trust in Jesus and Mary rather than only in himself as so many “successful” Catholics have done in their modern day self autonomy and self-sufficiency. I offered my Mass at 8:00 for John. You were the only one of my remaining 2 brothers and 2 sisters who called me. Thanks.
As you said, our family was and is a very dysfunctional family. I remember what you said about what Dad one time said to you, that made me very sad. Some of the kids were not wanted by our parents. I think the most not wanted was John, the last child. John inherited this rejection, at least at the psychological level, by his parents. Even without words, a child realizes this rejection. John lived out this rejection in his life. Later he used the “end of the world” as his excuse to not change his life for the better, and continued to find all kinds of excuses the rest of his life.
Do you remember when Dad sent to you, and two other brothers and sisters, a tape cassette to express his anger when John left home with your help around 1977 or 1978? Now I am writing a letter about the death of my brother John.
I got the impression from Dad as we were growing up that our family was just about the best family that could exist. Later I began to realize that Dad’s religion and his own assessment of his own holiness was heavily based on being better than others rather than just looking at Jesus as our model. This is why it was so important for him to criticize others so as to feel more holy.
One time when Dad was strongly criticizing Pope John Paul II because he did not do as our Dad thought he should do, I commented to him, when he provoked my response, that I do not presume to believe that I know more than the Pope who sees the whole world and Church situation better than me and that he is specially guided by the Holy Spirit as Jesus promised (Mt 16:18). Needless to say Dad was not very happy with my response!
Dad and Mom were trained in the old school in which the main goal of religion was to avoid hell, so they felt obliged to obey the Church in no birth control and the rest of the commandments. But they never matured to discover a God Who loves them immensely so as to do things to please the One Who loves them most. They never found and developed a personal relationship with Jesus. It is like a child who obeys his parents only out of fear instead of out of gratitude and love for all that the parents do and sacrifice for the child. Without gratitude, there is no salvation. This lack of Christian maturity was reflected also in how Dad most often disciplined his children out of fear instead of love, and we children felt this misguided motive in the short run and in the long run.
Our younger sister and her husband practiced and taught Natural Family Planning. When I listened to some of the audio cassette tapes produced by NFP in 1990 which my sister gave to me, I was struck by the rather strong attitude of feeling superior and holier than the 97% of the Catholics who did not follow the Church’s teachings by using NFP (according to NFP members at the time). I came to realize why many Bishops at that time had a difficult time with some of the promoters and teachers of NFP because they lacked the humility to simply be grateful to God for the gift of NFP for themselves without judging and condemning the other numerous “sinners” who did not use NFP.
It was not easy for Dad and Mom, not only on the material level to raise 6 children, but above all due to the lack of true spiritual guidance. 400 years ago there was held an important Council of the Church at Trent which was of great importance for the Church; its fruits are still felt by the Church today. The Council of Trent was a response to the Protestant Reformation which inaugurated a Catholic counter reform not only on the doctrinal level but also on the spiritual and moral levels. There were a whole series of reforms with the religious congregations and formation of the clergy. There were great innovators and renewers such as Saint Teresa of Avila, Saint John of the Cross, and after the Council, Saint Ignatius of Loyola.
On the one hand the Council of Trent had a great importance, above all for the formation of the priests and seminaries. But on the other hand there were collateral effects, not wanted or intended, like with medicines, such as a certain closure to the Sacred Scriptures caused by the desire to counter the subjective interpretation of the Sacred Scriptures promoted by Martin Luther. There was created a separation between the Old and the New Testaments of the Bible. But this brought with it grave consequences inside the Church. The New Testament was proclaimed in Latin which very few people understood. This gave rise to devotions, which are very good and did a lot of good. But unfortunately these religious practices of piety and spirituality were very often presented and lived as a moralistic obligation; this was caused by a tendency to separate the Mass and Holy Communion from the whole of Christian life which is fundamentally striving for an ever greater personal and loving relationship with Jesus Christ. This moralism made many see religion as many “do’s and don’ts” instead of leading toward a more mature spiritual life with a personal loving trusting relationship with Jesus in which “I can” do all these things for love, or better “I want” to do all these thing (such as obeying the Church in birth control and all of the 10 commandments) for this true and mature motive of love of the One Who loves me most, Jesus Christ. The Mass began to loose the important aspect of being the prayer of the community and drifted toward individualistic types of spiritualities. The clergy were to take care of the whole Mass; the faithful could only associate themselves from a distance and thus dedicated themselves to their personal devotions. Even Holy Communion appeared as a private devotion without any special ties to the Mass. It is true that “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom!” (Ps 111:10; Prov 9:10; see also: Job 28:28; Prov 1:7; 3:7; 15:33; Is 33:6). But “Perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and he who fears is not perfected in love” (1Jn 4:18). Many Christians did not go forward in maturing from the “beginning of wisdom” and did not become “perfected in love”!
It is interesting that most schismatic traditionalists hold on to the Council of Trent which condemned the subjective interpretation of the Sacred Scriptures while they themselves do the same thing in subjectively interpreting not only the Sacred Scriptures but all of the teachings of the Church and writings of the Popes.
Another rather strong negative influence on Dad and Mom was the jansenistic mentality which was still rather strong up to the Council, even though it was condemned by the Church many years ago (Pope Innocent X in 1653; Pope Alexander VII in 1656). Jansenism stressed God’s selective salvation and produced a general harshness and moral rigorism, denying God’s mercy to all mankind. Disregard of papal teaching led to an arbitrary attitude toward the use of the sacraments, notably reducing the frequency of penance and the Eucharist, and giving rise to Gallicanism, which denied papal primacy and infallibility. A great help in stemming the damage being done to many souls was by way of the apparitions to Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque (1647-90) and the devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus which helped people discover the burning love of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in a personal loving relationship with Jesus. This mentality considered God as a cold judge and very few are worthy even to receive Holy Communion and that salvation was almost impossible. But of course those who adhered to and promoted this heresy and distorted view and relationship with God felt that they were among the elect and better than the others. Since Dad and Mom did not have a good priest to help them realize the negative influences of this current of thought, they went in that direction which ultimately led to the family of our sister and Mom leaving the Church and entering the sectarian groups with a similar mentality which was not based on humility and the mercy of God, or that salvation is gratuitous (http://necedah-cult.blogspot.com). Few priests 60 years ago explained the very beneficial reasons for the Church’s teaching on birth control and the other important teachings, but most priests only said the Bible and the Church say so and you must obey; 60 years ago for a good number of Catholics this was enough but it did not help Catholics go toward greater maturity as Christians. Today, very few people will obey without an explanation about the truth with leads to a greater good and helping people to embrace the teachings of the Church as their own, in their own name. One cannot give to God the “paid bill” with a list of all the Holy Communions and Rosaries said and say therefore God must let me into heaven; salvation is a gratuitous gift although as St. James tells us “faith without works is dead” (Jms 2:17). Certainly Holy Communion and the Holy Rosary are very, in fact extremely important, but it all depends on the intention and the motive for which one receives Holy Communion and for which one prays the Rosary. The Pharisees and Scribes followed the law very scrupulously but Christ said: “Unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven” (Mt 5:20). “For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners” (Mt 9:13; Mk 2:17; Lk 5:32). “You received without pay, give without pay” (Mt 10:8).
I remember a couple of times when two or three of Dad’s sisters came to visit us, how Dad’s sisters several times just smiled at Dad, or sluff him off or just walked away, because they knew all too well that their little brother believed he was always right when there was any disagreement on just about any issue. Do you remember when we were rather young and Dad and Mom would storm out of the house of the Reinharts in Carol, Iowa when the relatives did not agree and totally accept what Dad and Mom said in regards to religion and politics? I remember them doing the same thing with the pastor near their house where they went to daily Mass. It is true that Jesus told the apostles: “And if any one will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet as you leave that house or town…” (Mt 10:14; Mk 6:11; Lk 9:5). But the apostle spoke the words of Jesus, for the glory of God, not their own works or for their glory! The truth without humility or charity is an idol!
The personalist principle of Blessed Pope John Paul II has helped greatly in this aspect of explaining and persuading people about the truth with leads to the true good. If people could only be led to understand this truth about good then it would cease to be a burden, it would cease to be oppressive. It is all important that the moral law not just be there like a big battery of do’s and don’ts, mainly don’t’s; that we might be able to understand the human rhyme and reason for the right of this and the wrong of that. So the truth about good has to be understood. Then we can take it into ourselves and make it the inner law of our own actions. In this way God’s laws then ceases to be a burden.
There are many, who seeing this hypocrisy of lack of humility, love and trust in God in many Christians, justify throwing out all the tremendous treasures in the one true Church. I tell them that I go to Mass not for the priest or nice friends, but for Jesus. If people want to use religion to serve themselves instead of using religion to serve God, to discover the will of God through the teaching of the Catholic Church, and to do the will of God with the help of the sacraments, that is their choice and God, Who is true Love, will respect that choice for all eternity!
To explain simply, as well as to avoid the typical elusive argumentation which covers up the true motive of so many who are fleeing from God (even though they believe they will go to heaven if they still believe that such a place exists), I tell people that if they want to make it to heaven, they must seek the Truth (big “T”) in a difficult and confusing world, especially listening the Vicar of Christ on earth, the Pope; then live this Truth with God's help, so that they can spend eternity with the Truth, who is God. Most people today do not even take the first step of seeking the Truth which is inconvenient because it bothers our almost dead consciences indicating to us that we must change our lives and suffer. Most people choose the easy way of convincing themselves that there is no eternity after death and thus they freely choose to lower themselves even below the level of animals with a mortal soul, thus thinking that they have no responsibility for their great God-given dignity and great responsibility. When they die, after fleeing the Truth all of their lives, God, out of true love, will respect and confirm their choice, and they will go to the place where there is no Truth, no God for all eternity! The Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC 1035) as well as the saints clearly tell us that the greatest pain in hell, more than all other pains put together, is the total and absolute and eternal separation of the creature from its Creator, Who is the TRUTH! To say that it is impossible to discover the truth is to imply that God is an idiot; “I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life; no one comes to the Father, but by Me” (Jn 14:6); “The Truth Shall Set You Free” (Jn 8:32)!
If we realize this, we can sympathize with Dad and Mom who were not helped by priests to obey the 10 Commandments explained by the Church not as an obligation only but as the loving divine providence and guidance of God for the good of each person, of each family and of each community and of the society as a whole. Dad and Mom, as well as a great many Christians today, were never offered Christianity and the revelation and guidance of God through Jesus Christ and His Church as from a God Who loves each of us personally and immensely. Thus there was not the foundation of responding to this great and immense love but only the fear of hell and punishment; this great lacking does not lead to a childlike trust and loving relationship with our Father in Heaven. “Unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven” (Mt 18:3). The fundamental aspect of true love is to forget self, go out of self to love God and neighbor. This is exactly what God did in creating all of us even though God did not need us in any way; God, on the cross, suffered immensely due to so many who refused His love because they were not willing to trust and obey God and to suffer with Jesus on the Cross in their daily lives living out the Gospel and the 10 Commandments explained by the Church that Jesus left us!
Thus Dad and Mom obeyed the Church in not using birth control like a child who feels forced and fearful of punishment instead of a child who learned to trust Holy Mother Church as the way to arrive at true and lasting happiness and fulfillment. Saint Thomas Aquinas tells us that true virtue lies in the middle between the two extremes. There were those who obeyed the Church because they felt forced with the motive of avoiding hell. And there were those who rebelled totally against the Church and threw out everything. It is interesting how the two extremes meet; the liberals throw out the Church because they do not want to accept the proper interpretation of the 10 Commandments which means they must give up illicit pleasures and mortify themselves so as to be able to love others in a true authentic way; the schismatic traditionalists throw out the Church due to pride, seeing all the “sinners” in Church, thinking that they are not sinners as did the Donatists sect in the fourth century. There are few who find the middle path of true virtue which is based on child like trust in God Who left us His Church, with the Pope as the head, to guide us for our true and lasting good. Even here one must struggle to maintain the middle path of virtue of realizing that the Church, the Body of Christ, like her head, Christ, is both divine and human. Thus just as the child Jesus “grew in wisdom….” (Lk 2:40). This is explained in great detail in the classic article: “An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine”, by John Henry Newman (http://www.newmanreader.org/works/development/).
But this is not a type of modernism in which truth subjectively changes according to “a kind of motion of the heart”, or a “felling for the divine”. This is a progression of understanding more and more the divine truths that exist from all eternity and do not change. In Christ’s human nature, he “grew in wisdom”, but in His divine nature, Christ knew all things. It is a mystery. This analogy is very similar for the Body of Christ, the Church, which is both divine and human!
One must also distinguish this proper growing in wisdom from positivism, in particular today, legal positivism, in which a great number of judges and government officials interpret the law and the constitution according to their world view, according to “modern times”, without any respect for what the majority of the citizens voted to approve or even offering the people to change the law by majority vote. Relativism says all is relative, and thus also relativism is relative which relativists do not want to admit. Relativism leads to legal positivism which is the idea that whatever the law does is OK and cannot be criticized as unjust. The individualism of this culture leads to an isolated collection of individuals each of which is his own god. Pope Benedict stated just before being elected Pope: “Today, having a clear faith based on the Creed of the Church is often labeled as fundamentalism. Whereas relativism, that is, letting oneself be "tossed here and there, carried about by every wind of doctrine", seems the only attitude that can cope with modern times. WE ARE BUILDING A DICTATORSHIP OF RELATIVISM that does not recognize anything as definitive and whose ultimate goal consists solely of one's own ego and desires.” (http://www.vatican.va/gpII/documents/homily-pro-eligendo-pontifice_20050418_en.html). When people throw out the saving and freeing laws of God which commands that the strong must help the weak, automatically we go toward the law of “MIGHT MAKES RIGHT!”; “the law of the jungle”! If you are not the strongest, you will end up under a very horrible dictatorship that could care less about you even though you voted for these people who offered so many beautiful lies and promises. One forgets so easily the old saying: “There is no honor among thieves!” Those who do not pray and seek to live their prayer; those who do not seek the Truth, the will of God, and thus do not seek to live this Truth, the will of God, will be very easily led by the pied piper with a hidden tail, a hidden agenda, while they believe they are so intelligent, wise, sophisticated, modern and politically correct, while they criticize and ridicule those who seek to submit to a higher power above themselves and above this material visible world! These little self made gods begin to call good evil and evil good (Is 5:20-21). Those who truly pray and seek to live their prayer will much more easily see through the smoke screen and see the difference between nice lies and true, lasting and beneficial fruits for everyone, not just an elite few! Of course the elite would not like to be treated as they treat those outside of their special group!!! What great evangelical principles! These elite believe that they are the only ones with wisdom to direct everything and thus do not understand how it was possible for the American experiment of democracy lasted so long. But the people of a democracy must continually work to sustain this precious gift. Upon his farewell address to the nation, GEORGE WASHINGTON tried to impress upon his fellow countrymen that it was “Religion and Morality” that served as the foundation for our young nation. Without the foundation of Religion and Morality that George Washington and the other founding fathers provided for us, there is simply no real hope for the future of this country. The people in so many countries of the world which were not given the gift of a Christian foundation are used to continual dictatorships. We Americans let our flag down in maintaining “religion and morality” with vigilance and soon the USA will be under the worst dictatorship that ever existed on the face of the earth! The USA received much from God and thus the punishment will be greater for not having used these talents to build up the kingdom of God (Mt 25:14-30).
Listen to what the elite say about us peons! Rockefeller asked Aaron Russo: “WHAT DO YOU CARE ABOUT THOSE PEOPLE, what difference does it make to you? Take care of your own life; do the best you can for you and your family. The rest of the people they don’t mean anything to you; they’re just surfs, they’re just people.” (“Nicholas Rockefeller admitted the elite s goal is a 100% mic”; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9mp6J6pT6xU; “Rockefeller: The Goal is to get everybody chipped!” (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=isVFYXdCpJI). What would Hitler have done if he had at his disposal the technology of today to be able to monitor every human being on the face of the planet. The Austrians swallowed the lies of Hitler in an economic crisis and thus 98% of the Austrians voted for Hitler before Hitler invaded Austria!
There is a lawyer here where I live who has already taken at least one doctor to court because the doctor put in a microchip while performing a needed surgical operation. She also gave me the website of a group which is trying to fight this injustice but with very little success. There are thousands of doctors who have begun doing this terrible act. (Cicat; “Centro Internazionale Contro l'Abuso e l'Abuso Tecnologico” (International Center Against Technological Abuse) (http://www.cicat.it/?page_id=9).
Pope Benedict tells us: “Where positivist reason considers itself the only sufficient culture and banishes all other cultural realities to the status of subcultures, it diminishes man, indeed it threatens his humanity.” (http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/benedict_xvi/speeches/2011/september/documents/hf_ben-xvi_spe_20110922_reichstag-berlin_en.html).
Fr. Bob Barron said in an interview with Colleen Carroll Campbell on EWTN (“Bold Evangelization in an Age of Beige Christianity”) that “many traditionalists attach the Church to a culture that they want to bring back; but the Church is bigger than this.”
FIVE HUNDRED YEARS AGO THERE WERE MANY SINNERS IN THE CATHOLIC CHURCH which caused the Protestant Reformation; today there are many sinners in the Church which cause many to leave the Church. A good husband does not abandon his wife when she becomes old and not pretty. If Satan cannot get you on the extreme side of the liberals, he will try to get you on the other extreme which is even worse. One can jump out of the Divine Ship, the Church, either on the left side with the liberals or on the right side with the schismatic traditionalists. My father used to say to Protestants: “I’d rather have an ugly box with a diamond inside than a beautiful box that is empty inside.” He was referring to the fact that the Catholic Church has all seven sacraments; it is sad that Dad did not try to avoid the temptation to put himself above the Pope and fall into non constructive criticism which led the family further away from the great gift of the guidance and help offered by Christ’s Church. Schismatic traditionalists try to find a group that is “as holy” as they are!?! It is Jesus, the Son of God, Who decided to found His Church on 12 sinners instead of 12 perfect angels from heaven! Who is more intelligent and full of wisdom, God or us? St. Augustine even exclaimed while fighting off the Donatists: “How many sheep there are outside the Church and how many wolves are inside!” Many follow the mass media today in criticizing the Church and the priests and the bishops. I asked one of these puppets of the propaganda of the mass media who continually criticizes Catholic clergy instead of praying for them: “Would it have been better if Jesus Christ had founded the Church on 12 perfect men as yourself, Sir?”
In the U.S., there are over 30,000 independent protestant groups all interpreting the Sacred Scriptures in their own way, very often in contradictory ways. Jesus knew well that there would be many opinions and confusion about the most important topic of eternal salvation and so He gave to us the Church with the ROCK as our guaranteed and divinely protected guide (Mt 16:18). Those who break away from the Church wilfully put themselves above the ROCK that Jesus left us and they feel they are infallibly and directly guided by the Holy Spirit, just as all the founders of the protestant groups believed. The branches not attached to the Vine, the Church with the ROCK as the head, the branches wither (Jn 15: 5-6)!
Are we promoting and teaching the religion of the Gospels explained by the one true Church, the Catholic Church with the Pope as the visible head, or are we promoting and teaching a nice comfortable “Christian” religion without the cross, while rendering the consciences of our parishioners insensitive and numb? Are we truly good shepherds of our flocks to protect the sheep from the very numerous and subtly ingenious wolves of today? Or have we slipped into the comfortable and self-satisfying role of the hireling who gratifies himself with the applause of the sheep with his nice words that the sheep want to hear, but then when the sneaky shrewd astute sly wolf comes, he abandons the flock, not being ready or willing to give his life for the sheep due to the fact that he did not preach the uncomfortable truths which would make him unpopular or even be rejected by the majority of the self-seeking sheep (Jn 10:7-18)? “For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own likings, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander into myths” (2Tim 4:3-4).
It is true that when I was younger I was treated as the favored son, the favored child being the only one genetically like Mom. They even spent money in their poverty to take me to a doctor when I was young to help me grow taller! Did they do this for the glory of God or for other motives?
But I too had to grow up and to go beyond the great lackings of our parents. I too could have rebelled, as at least one of our brothers did, and throw out my parents due to their hypocrisy and then throw out also their religion as an excuse to do whatever I pleased, like sex outside of marriage, without the restrictions of the 10 Commandments explained by the teaching authority that Jesus left us here on earth, the Church. I too could have embraced the delight of pride of feeling special and holy as our parents tried to maintain as is commonly done in the cults. Dad and Mom, as well as a great number of Christians, never reach a loving childlike trust in God and in His guidance through the Bible and His Church in order to come to realize that Jesus loves each of us more than we love ourselves, that His laws actually make us more free and joyful, instead of less free and less happy. Thus so many Christians did not grow out of their child egoism of immaturity, and they pass this on to their children.
The ones who led the 1968 massive rejection of authority on university campuses all over the world are now in positions of power! “The Woodstock Generation!”, those who received very little or no true altruistic example of love from the parents who threw out all rules in the sexual revolution, who never learned gratitude toward their creator nor toward their parents; the generation which separated freedom from the truth http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/john_paul_ii/encyclicals/documents/hf_jp-ii_enc_25031995_evangelium-vitae_en.html) which meant license to do whatever you want to do without restrictions. Do you remember how Simon & Garfunkel mesmerized our generation telling us that we have no free will: “Like a rat in a maze the pattern before me lies” (“Patterns”), and thus we can blame everybody else for our problems: “When I think back at all the crap I learned in High School…” (“Kodachrome/Maybellene”). Remember how the “Fons” in “Happy Days” gave so many youth of our day a model that was contrary to the model and example that Christ gives to us. I remember Pat, when I returned after my first year in college and you finished the second year in high school, your personality had been totally changed into the model of the Fons; you were no longer Pat my brother but another person and I do not think you realized this. I was very surprised and very sad. Jesus offers us our true personality and character; the other very numerous god-less models and heroes of our day destroy the great design and personality that God has given to each of us. We make the choice which one we decide to follow and imitate and God respects that choice for all eternity! Contrast this hideous and immature attitude of the “great people” thrust upon us today by the motors of the culture of death with gratitude toward God, parents and teachers! We have all received so much from our Creator Who gave us all that we have freely out of love. So many ungrateful people are like tubes in which love enters at one end from God and from others and then they choose to block the other end of the tube, themselves, so as to use all they have been given for themselves rather than being an open tube which passes on the love received to others (Lk 8:38; Mt 10:8; Jn 1:12; Mt 7:7; Lc 11:9-13).
But I have a certain sympathy for these people because almost all of them come from families poisoned by the contraceptive mentality of their parents; the so-called sexual revolution, free from all restraints or rules which is false love and leads to the worst slavery; true love means to set oneself aside or sacrifice oneself for the good of the other ! Is a train more free off the railroad tracks or are preschool children more free outside of the protecting walls of the playground? We have swallowed the lies of the father of lies, Satan, offered to us by his numerous followers, especially today! When one does not earnestly pray everyday to seek to discover and do (“Thy will be done”!) God’s holy and saving will, one no longer is able to distinguish between good and evil, right or wrong, beautiful lies and promises, bad fruits and true good fruits as Jesus warned us: “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits” (Mt 7:15-16). Those in the state of grace, who truly follow and live God’s commandments and Gospel, will be able to RECOGNIZE THIS DECEPTION. For those who do not "God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: that they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness." (2Thess 2:11-12).
I followed the advice of my parents to leave UCLA and to go with Ann to Necedah, Wisconsin. Even though at Necedah I was totally surrounded by the sectarian mentality that the outside world is all bad and we special people at the Shrine were specially chosen by the Mother of God, somehow God gave me the grace to begin to realize the foundation there in the cult at Necedah was not one of humility and trust in God but rather pride and trust in self. When I succeeded in putting this intuition into words in the book “The Catholic Church and Private Revelation” (http://priv-rev.blogspot.com), my parents, in a real sense, excommunicated me from the family and it was a relief for me to go to Italy and enter a religious congregation, the Oblates of the Virgin Mary.
I believe that at least one of the paragraphs that Dad and Mom were not too happy with was the following:
“9.5: The Pit of Cynical Self-Deception:
But one of the most self devastating talents of rebellious man is the art of making rationalizations, excuses and exceptions for himself even though he subjectively thinks he is objective. What a deep pit of blind and proud self deception! Who can help such a one or such a group all stampeding in the name of God or Mary or holiness in the same perilous direction ironically away from God and His representatives? … (http://priv-rev.blogspot.it/2008/04/pr-chapter-ix.html).
When the illicit bishop at Necedah, Benedetto, read the following two paragraphs, he exclaimed to the our younger sister and her husband, who were present, “He (Brother Paul as I was known in the short-lived Franciscan order at Necedah) was writing this for us, for me!” The our younger sister and her husband acknowledge this in 1986 but later, without the help of prudent guidance or at least the study of Church history and the accompanying documents, they easily slid back into the sectarian mentality and thus closed themselves off from any input different from the sectarian mentality.
Put here Catholicism, by Barron, 130106, about fundamental definition of sin, closure….
“7.14: Unconditional Surrender:
It is good to note that heresies and schisms in Church history did not come about all of a sudden. There were always various factors involved that developed in time. Besides the unwillingness to follow the teachings and guidance of Holy Mother Church, one of the major reasons for schism and heresy was ignorance, both culpable and non-culpable, about the Catholic faith, especially about what the Church is. The schismatics generally did not know what the three attributes and the four marks of the Church were or meant. Thus, when they left the Church, the Vine and source of all life, they did not miss her too much because they never developed a prudent appreciation of the Church based on solid reasonable truth from their catechisms. The leaders of some of the schismatic groups, which attempted to reunify with the Church, often would only go as far as they were willing to as the negotiations progressed. In other words, these lukewarm or stubborn schismatic leaders desired to reunite to the Vine due to their weak but bothered consciences but only under their terms and not the terms presented to them by the Church through her representatives which was normally the seated local ordinary who then corresponded with Rome. The leaders and followers of the schismatic or heretical groups who remained outside of the Church did not possess enough love or knowledge of Holy Mother Church and the importance of being united to her. Thus, they were unwilling to give up what ever was holding them back from unconditional surrender to our gentle but firm mother on earth, the Church.
It is also interesting to note that many schismatic or heretical branches which broke away from the Vine understood the meaning, at least for a while of the word apostolic. Thus, many such renegade branches who had a valid bishop within their group (usually the leader), carefully maintained their valid and documented apostolic succession in order to retain valid orders and thus valid sacraments. These types of groups, while admitting the validity and necessity of valid orders obtained from an apostolic succession all the way back to the apostles, who received their sacramental powers from Christ, DENIED ONE OF THE THREE MAJOR DIVINE ATTRIBUTES OF CHRIST'S CHURCH, AUTHORITY. Christ gave the Apostles, and thus the Church, the power and authority to infallibly teach, to rule, and to sanctify all willing men to the end of time. Almost invariably, a reform movement within a heretical group did not result in bringing most of the group into the Church but at least it brought the many of good will who were willing to accept truth when it was shown to them. A good example of this was the Oxford Movement in England, lead by John Henry, later Cardinal Newnan, within the heretical group called Anglicanism which began as a schism under Henry VIII (1534) but became a heresy under his successor Edward VI. (http://priv-rev.blogspot.it/2008/04/ch-7-ark-guided-by-dove.html).
But for a whole year I did not succeed in sleeping very well due to this expulsion by my parents. After the death of Dad (April 2007), the our younger sister’s family succeeded in leading Mom out of the Church. I had bought a plane ticket in December of 2007 to come to visit Mom, but finally she had the courage to tell me the real truth that she had left the Catholic Church and that I was not a validly ordained priest and that she did not want me to come home and celebrate in her home a false Mass. I continued to call Mom about once a month, but frequently she would vent her bothered conscience at me with the sectarian schismatic mentality that she learned from the totally controlled and closed environment of the Sedevacantists; I would simply respond with the straightforward truth which she could not tolerate. One time she said to me: “Well what is more important than the Latin Mass?” I responded immediately: “Jesus Christ! Jesus Christ!” And she was silent. She never matured to the point of seeking each day what Jesus wants. As for so many people today, religion exists to serve me not to help me serve God; things are totally upside down! Finally in March 2012, when she heard my voice on her phone secretary, she no longer responded to my phone calls; I am surprise it took her that long to close up totally as did the our younger sister and her husband years ago into the safety of their cult cut off from the outside world and any explanation not filtered by the cult. When I called Tom for his birthday in July, he told me that Mom will not talk to me anymore until I ask for forgiveness (I found this somewhat amusing since Mom does not respond to my telephone calls, so how can I ask forgiveness for telling her that she should return to the Church!)! After having suffered greatly years ago (1983-1984) after being rejected by my parents, this time it was not difficult at all. "Think not that I have come to send peace upon the earth: I have come not to send peace, but the sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man's foes shall be those of his own household. He that loves his father or mother more than me (or His Church?!?) is not worthy of me: and he that loves his son or daughter more than me (or His Church?!?) is not worth of me." (Mt 10:34-37)!
People are free to pout and to throw their tantrums and have a “pity party” even though it does great harm to themselves and to those around them, or they are free to try to learn to dialogue together to seek the truth outside of their heads or outside their special group, or outside those who feel they are more intelligent and wise and “politically correct”! But this requires diligent daily prayer to acquire this true humility and trust in their Creator instead of themselves. If a person is truly seeking the Truth outside of their own heads, they would be willing to listen also to those who are not in agreement with themselves, those outside their “special group” or cult. The spirit of Truth leads to openness; the spirit of non-truth leads to closure in oneself and in a very restricted group. Certainly there is a lot of crazy people and groups today which are to be avoided. But as Dad used to say every once in a while: “When the going gets tough, the tough get going!” The tough do not abandon their station, their position, in the heat of the battle covered with blood, in the greatest onslaught against God and His Church (Mt 24:21), against His laws and His true followers. Precisely when the world was very far from God and many had rejected their Creator, God the Father did not abandon us or close in on Themselves (the Most Holy Trinity), but rather sent His only begotten Son into the world, even though most of His creatures rejected Him (Jn 1:10-11) and ended up crucifying Him on the cross!
Jesus founded His Church on sinners like you and me, not on confirmed saints or angels in heaven. People who have slid into the sectarian mentality believe that only their little group is perfect and holy and totally orthodox (and “saved”!)! How many similar groups in the history of the Church are no longer in existence such as the Donatists of the fifth century, etc.; but the same pharisaical attitude continues to show up again and again. If you cut yourself off from the vine, the branch withers away. (Jn 15:5-6).
The Church on earth, the “Church Militant”, is made up of saints and sinners and everything else in between (Mt 13: 36-40, 47-50). In the early Church the heretical cult, the Donatists, explained these two parables of the fish and of the weeds in a rather simplistic way: the Church was made up of only the good people and the world was made up of all the evil people without hope of salvation. The Church would be in the world as a “closed garden” or better, the Ark of Noah in which only for the very few there is salvation from the general flood. St. Augustine’s thought won out which was that of the universal Church. The Church herself is a field in which grow weeds and good seed, bad and good together . St. Augustine even exclaimed: “How many sheep there are outside the Church and how many wolves are inside!” The world is not divided into children of darkness and children of light; but rather we are all children of darkness, we are all weeds, but destined, if we desire it, to become children of the light and good grain, receiving the Kingdom and converting ourselves. Nothing is fixed or fatal, no castes of the elect or of the damned. The field is, yes, the world, but it is also the Church: the place in which there is room to grow, to convert oneself and above all to imitate the patience of God. “The bad exist in this world either so that they might convert themselves, or that by way of them the good exercise patience” (St. Augustine).
Just like Adam and Eve lost their spiritual and material inheritance for themselves and for their progeny, so too parents who leave the Catholic Church deprive their children of the great gift of the Church here on earth. Those who cut themselves off from the vine will wither (Jn 15: 5-6), as is shown also by Church history. Church history shows that even in the most difficult times, the true followers of Christ did not succumb to a closed mentality or enter a cult, like the Donatists, trying to defend themselves from the strong spiritual onslaughts of Satan of the times. We must always fight for the truth even though there are many sinners “and wolves”, as St. Augustine put it, in the Church. There are many good examples of this spiritual toughness today such as seen on EWTN.
We must distinguish between heresy, apostasy, and schism. Heresy is denying a revealed truth. Schism is rejecting the authority of the Church, particularly the authority of the Roman pontiff as head of the Church. Apostasy is rejecting completely the Christian religion (CCC 817-819; CIC canon 751). “However, one cannot charge with the sin of the separation those who at present are BORN INTO THESE COMMUNITIES [that resulted from such separation] and in them are brought up in the faith of Christ, and the Catholic Church accepts them with respect and affection as brothers” (CCC 818).
If one is sincere with God and prays a lot, each rejection helps us to become more attached to the Truth, Who is God, and less attached to the false and temporal and pleasurable and prideful values or things that this world offers to each of us in very stimulating, alluring and subtle ways today with the mass media, destructive indoctrination in our schools and even in most religious institutions. We so easily and so willingly forget that life is a battle, a “DOUR COMBAT with the powers of evil” (CCC 409)! We all want to relax; but if we relax in a combat, the enemy advances immediately. Our enemy is much more intelligent than we are and never sleeps. One of his main tactics is to lure us to sleep spiritually so that we do not wake up until he offers his hospitality to us in his eternal abode. If the enemy does not succeed in luring us to sleep, he seeks to pervert our motives into pride.
After the sudden expulsion from the religious congregation, the Oblates of the Virgin Mary (1990), as well as a similar rejection by an Italian Pastor (2001; “Let Us Love Our Spouse”; http://spir-food.blogspot.com/2008/05/let-us-love-our-spouse.html), I took the advice of the Servant of God, Archbishop Fulton Sheen, and I began making a holy hour every day before the Most Blessed Sacrament in the tabernacle. I cannot tell you how much this has helped me! A child was once asked what does it mean to love someone. The child simply answered to want to spend time with that person! How much time do we spend with Jesus in prayer and before Jesus in Person in the tabernacle of every Catholic Church? Who do we really love?
It was also very interesting to me that exactly during the same month (March 2012) that I no longer had a home in the United States, after over 25 years in Italy, the Italian government finally gave me the Italian citizenship. The providence of God was not lacking and was right on time!
I write this that it might help us to go forward without throwing out the baby (Jesus and His Church) with the bathwater (the great lackings and weaknesses of others) which is always a very strong temptation, especially if one has not persevered in sincere humble constant prayer to arrive at a loving trusting relationship with the One Who loves us most, Jesus. I hope these personal reflections will help. I realize that these words might be very strong if one has not formed a habit of prayer and seeking the truth each day. These words in this email would have been hard for me to swallow years ago. But unfortunately, life is short, and in particular for our generation because so few people are praying! When people do not want to consider the reality before them today in regards to the world situation (“Ignorance is bliss!”), I tell them simply that if more people would have been praying 100 years ago, Hitler would not have been able to do what he did. Today there are much less people praying than 100 years ago! The Body of Christ will be crucified in our generation which will purify the Church.
I am not a pessimist. We know the last chapter of the book! The true followers of Christ win, but after the crucifixion! But we should be realists like St. Thomas, based on the purely objective reality created by God. The further we get a field of this base of objective truth the more easily Satan and his puppets can manipulate us and lead us astray in any direction they decide.
In the prophetic classic book, written for our very difficult times, “True Devotion To The Blessed Virgin by St. Louis de Montfort”, Montfort writes:
“I will place enmities between you and the woman, between your race and her race; she will crush your head and you will lie in wait for her heel” (Gen. 3:15) (51). “God has established only one enmity–but it is an irreconcilable one–which will last and even go on increasing to the end of time. That enmity is between Mary, his worthy Mother, and the devil, between the children and the servants of the Blessed Virgin and the children and followers of Lucifer.” (52). “What Lucifer lost by pride Mary won by humility.” (53). “God has established not just one enmity but "enmities", and not only between Mary and Satan but between her race and his race. That is, God has put enmities, antipathies and hatreds between the true children and servants of the Blessed Virgin and the children and slaves of the devil.” (54)
Two armies are now being formed in our period of time: the army of Mary made up of the truly humble who submit to the lawful Authority that Jesus Christ left us, and the army of Lucifer whose members submit only to themselves in relativism or their special or perfect groups. In our generation will be fulfilled “she will crush your head and you will lie in wait for her heel”!
See also: “CARDINAL IVAN DIAS AT LOURDES ANNOUNCES: WE ARE AT THE FINAL BATTLE BETWEEN THE CHURCH AND ANTICHURCH. (Visit: “An Open Letter To A Fellow Priest”; http://testimony-polo.blogspot.com/2009/11/open-letter-to-fellow-priest.html).
The German people were not evil. The Japanese people were not evil. The Russian people were not evil. But it was a VERY FEW IDEOLOGUES that seized control and then MANIPULATED A COMPLACENT AND UNWARY POPULACE. Let us not say that it cannot happen in America! According to Edmund Burke, evil triumphs when the good do nothing. If the Godly, who have not fallen into the fundamental trap of being distracted and complacent with all kinds of illicit and detrimental pleasures, and do not go out to fight the forces of evil, the forces of evil will come to us. Those of good will, all true Christians (not the pharisaical proud or those who have embraced “license” to do whatever they please as freedom detached from the Truth!), are the stars of Heaven, so we must shine brightly especially today! On the darkest night, the stars shine the brightest. Today we are truly in the darkest spiritual night that ever was on the face of the earth. “Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn't mean politics won't take an interest in you!” -- Pericles (430 B.C.).
DO NOT FORGET THAT GERMANY WAS THE MOST EDUCATED, THE MOST CULTURED COUNTRY IN EUROPE. It was full of music, art, museums, hospitals, laboratories, and universities. And yet, in less than six years (a shorter time span than just two terms of the U. S. presidency) it was rounding up its own citizens, killing others, abrogating its laws, turning children against parents, and neighbors against neighbors. … all with the best of intentions, of course. The road to Hell is paved with good intentions.
"WE THE PEOPLE", is one of the most-quoted sections of the Constitution and of the Declaration of Independence of the United States of America. President Abraham Lincoln, at his famous “Gettysburg Address” in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania on November 19, 1863, said: … “that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.” Let us not pervert and destroy our country by changing Lincoln’s words to: “that government of the government, by the government, for the government”! Our precious and wisely written United States Constitution begins with the words: “We the People”! We must not let these ruthless conceited bureaucrats interpret this God-inspired document as: “WE THE GOVERNMENT”! This was precisely the reason for the American Revolution!
THE FIRST AMENDMENT OF OUR CONSTITUTION GUARANTEES THE FREEDOM TO PRACTICE ONES RELIGION PRIVATELY AND PUBLICLY. This is our most precious gift which many countries in the world do not enjoy; it is also the most important reason that our founding fathers of our great country came to America. THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES IS NO LONGER FOLLOWED BY THE CURRENT ADMINISTRATION IN WASHINGTON D.C. If people do not pray and become more and more united to the Truth, Who is God, in humility and trust, they end up not knowing right from wrong, just from unjust, good from evil, even though they consider themselves wise and intelligent (Mt 11:25); in this way they end up being led by the pied piper, Satan and his very numerous followers today. And thus they are unable to distinguish between beautiful lies and true good and lasting fruits which help society and the fundamental cell of the society, the family. It is easier to believe beautiful lies than to work hard to study how a candidate has voted in the past and the laws that he has promoted. Has the candidate truly helped to build up society and the fundamental cell of society, the family? In many countries of the world, especially the rich countries where radical secularism has taken a very strong hold on society and the mind set of the people, good and evil are totally turned up side down. “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter. Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, and shrewd in their own sight!” (Is 5:20-21). This is why so many government leaders who are working together to arrive at the “New World Order” promote as their first priority, in a way as hidden and covert as possible, all kinds of illicit sex, pornography, abortion, euthanasia, homosexuality, and the division and thus the weakening of the Catholic Church, so that the people do not care where the government is leading them, as long as they have their spaghetti, wine and sex. From a website in Italian one finds the following in regards to MASONRY AND SEXUAL CORRUPTION (http://cattoliciliberi.forumcommunity.net/?t=25524939) (visit: “Catholic Prophecy Today” (http://markbeast.blogspot.com). The great God-given gift and power and energy of the sexual drive can be used to build up society or to destroy society, just as fire can be used to warm the house or burn down the house. The devil knows this all too well. This is why our Lady of Fatima told the three children: “MORE SOULS GO TO HELL BECAUSE OF SINS OF THE FLESH than for any other reason.” At Fatima, the Blessed Virgin Mary told the three child seers that many souls go to hell because they have no one to pray or make sacrifices for them. In her Memoirs, Sister Lucy describes the vision of hell that Our Lady showed the children at Fatima: (http://www.fatima.org/essentials/facts/hell.asp).
Christians and Catholics who are in favor of abortion could care less what Jesus wants, or why Jesus died on the cross! They have made themselves little gods and they decide what is right or wrong, and then, as little gods, they have convinced themselves that hell does not exist or that there is nothing after death! Those so-called Catholic politicians who say I am against abortion as the Church teaches but then say I cannot impose my beliefs on others is like saying I am against murder but I cannot impose on others to not be able to murder others according to the law. For believers, at conception God gives the embryo an immortal, adult soul just like grown people!
On September 24, 2008, your wife wrote to me by email: “You probably need to stop sending us the smears about Barack Obama. You are not going to change our minds about him. We continue to be active in his campaign. I respect your views on abortion, and would not try to change your mind. Barack Obama does support Roe vs. Wade, as I do.”
When several cousins reacted negatively about what I revealed about Obama before the elections of 2008, I responded in an email of November 4, 2008: “I believe that if a person openly proclaims that the first thing he would do as president of the USA would be to promote and increase the incredible genocide of killing tens of millions of helpless, defenseless, innocent human beings, I believe that this person would be CAPABLE OF ANYTHING!” I then quoted the following:
"The first thing I'd do as president is sign the "Freedom of Choice Act" (FOCA). That's the first thing that I'd do." -- Senator Barack Obama, speaking to the Planned Parenthood Action Fund, July 17, 2007 (http://www.nrlc.org/foca/index.html).
Beware also of FOCA-By-Stealth. Abortion advocates are counting on the economy and other pressing issues to divert the attention of the American people so they can surreptitiously and with little resistance advance their radical pro-abortion agenda. Read more about FOCA-By-Stealth at http://www.aul.org/FOCA_by_stealth; FOCA-by-Stealth Timeline: How Congress and the Obama Administration are Implementing FOCA BY STEALTH; http://www.aul.org/FOCAbyStealthTimelin.
It all depends if we follow the instruction manual of the Creator of ourselves, our families, our society and the whole universe. In the Catholic Church one can truly point to one place to find the fullness of truth of Divine Revelation and saving "elements of sanctification" (Lumen Gentium, no. 8) by which the faithful may be configured to Christ (http://www.vatican.va/archive/hist_councils/ii_vatican_council/documents/vat-ii_const_19641121_lumen-gentium_en.html). But the Church also tells us: “Moreover, some, even very many, of the most significant elements and endowments which together go to build up and give life to the Church itself, can exist outside the visible boundaries of the Catholic Church…” “All who have been justified by faith in Baptism are incorporated into Christ; they therefore have a right to be called Christians, and with good reason are accepted as brothers in the Lord by the children of the Catholic Church.” (UR 3, 4; http://www.vatican.va/archive/hist_councils/ii_vatican_council/documents/vat-ii_decree_19641121_unitatis-redintegratio_en.html).
“Even though incorporated into the Church, one who does not however persevere in charity is not saved. He remains indeed in the bosom of the Church, but “in body” not “in heart” (LG 14; CCC 819). The Church clearly teaches against indifferentism and subjectivism (DH 1; Dignitatis Humanae, no. 1; http://www.vatican.va/archive/hist_councils/ii_vatican_council/documents/vat-ii_decl_19651207_dignitatis-humanae_en.html).
How many Catholics do not make these distinctions and end up leaving the saving Ship left for us by Christ because they trusted more in their own intelligence and wisdom! This logic seems to imply that only the intelligent people go to heaven because they knew more than the Church and the Pope, guided by the Holy Spirit (Mt 16:18), while the unintelligent people who trust and submit to some guy in Rome in union with other heads of the dioceses around the world go to hell! “I thank thee, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to babes” (Mt 11:25)!
THOMAS JEFFERSON, our 3rd. President of the USA, declared “That government is best which governs least.” He also said: “A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have...” Is this not right in line with the Church’s principle of subsidiarity? I wrote the following paragraph to my representatives in the senate and in the congress: “Please promote the principle of subsidiarity so that our country does not become a socialistic dictatorship but remains “for the people and by the people”. SUBSIDIARITY is an organizing principle that matters ought to be handled by the smallest, lowest or least centralized competent authority. The Oxford English Dictionary defines subsidiarity as the idea that a central authority should have a subsidiary function, performing only those tasks which cannot be performed effectively at a more immediate or local level. Let us give the power back to the people before it is too late!”
It doesn't take a brain surgeon to conclude that Mr. Jefferson must be whirling in his grave at the current effort by President Barack Obama to increase our government to a size and scope unprecedented in history, using taxpayer money in amounts that exceed our comprehension. With each new bill touted as "crucial" for the economy, the government is getting MORE CONTROL over banks, health care, jobs, housing and more. It is an all-out assault on capitalism and the form of government conceived and enshrined in the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution. With the Obamacare, we now have a huge bureaucracy between the patient and the doctor (totally against the principle of subsidiarity) and we are forced to pay for the murder of innocent, helpless and unwanted human beings, a true genocide! All those who have supported this diabolical agenda will find themselves in the category to be eliminated in the near future, if not for all eternity, if they do not repent, ask for God’s forgiveness and change their lives before it is too late!
If the citizens are not diligent in their moral life nourished with much prayer, slowly the citizens take the easy way of letting the government do more and more for them, allowing the government to acquire more and more power. We slowly become used to the idea that our rights come from the state, the government, and we surrender our rights to the state so that tomorrow the government can then take our rights away. Without diligent prayer and the living out of that prayer we quickly forget what was paid for with blood in the American Revolution and then wisely written in the declaration of independence: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” (http://www.ushistory.org/declaration/document/).
States and governments come and go, but people who do not pray to seek and do the will of God forget that they have a soul that does not come and go; the human soul from conception is immortal. This is why the declaration of independence had it totally right, written by men who believed in God and lived out what they believed. If the people give the government the power to legally eliminate categories of human beings such as unwanted babies or unwanted old people, tomorrow the government can change the category of people not protected by law and anyone of us can find ourselves in that category to be eliminated. One does not have to look too far back in history to see this process of the loss of living out ones faith: 75 years ago in Germany, 100 years ago in Russia, etc. We are quickly sliding ever more deeply into the culture of death where there will be no respect for life as it is in hell.
When I try to help people realize how far they have slid into relativism and no longer use religion discover God’s will and then to do God’s holy will but to serve themselves and to do their will, I cannot help thinking of how it must have been for Noah building the Ark as the people in the city laughed at him!
OUR LADY AT AKITA, JAPAN TOLD US IN 1973: "As I told you, if men do not repent and better themselves, the Father will inflict a terrible punishment on all humanity. It will be a PUNISHMENT GREATER THAN THE DELUGE, such as one will never have seen before. Fire will fall from the sky and will wipe out a great part of humanity, the good as well as the bad, sparing neither priests nor faithful. The survivors will find themselves so desolate that they will envy the dead. The only arms that will remain for you will be the Rosary and Sign left by My Son. Each day recite the prayers of the Rosary. With the Rosary, pray for the pope, the bishops, and the priests."
"The work of the devil will infiltrate even the Church in such a way that one will see cardinals opposing cardinals, bishops against other bishops. The priests who venerate Me will be scorned and opposed by their conferees…churches and altars sacked, the Church will be full of those who accept compromise and the demon will press many priests and consecrated souls to leave the service of the Lord. The demon will be especially implacable against souls consecrated to God. The thought of the loss of so many souls is the cause of My sadness. If sins increase in number and gravity, there will be no longer pardon for them." (http://www.miraclerosarymission.org/akita.htm).
If we could see the adult soul given to God at conception to every embryo, we would die of joy immediately! But those who do not pray and live their prayer, not only do not believe this by faith but want to destroy it for their own convenience! Those who proclaim the greatness of the human soul are scoffed at and ridiculed by those who have willingly lost and eradicated inside themselves the knowledge and faith given to them by God, imprinted on their very souls and hearts.
Just about all Christians say the Our Father: “Thy will be done”. But in practice today, the great majority of Christians live: “My will be done”! For a great number of Christians God for them is like a Coca Cola machine, a vending machine in which you put the coin in (a little prayer) and they expect the Coca Cola or whatever they want to come out of the machine. They do not trust in God but in themselves and in their intelligence and wisdom, and thus they do not seek to discover what God wants them to do, even though what God wants them to do is the best for them.
Those who have more responsibility given to them by God, such as bishops and priests, more will be required of them in this “final confrontation” between good and evil.
One of our brothers continued to frequent the sacraments regularly and to pray the Rosary, as he had learned from his family of birth, up until his second year of college. At a certain point he began to have sexual relations with girls before marriage without repenting or going to confession. He also began to focus on the defects of his father which helped him to justify throwing out all together the Catholic faith that he received from his parents. After more that 30 years outside of the Church and away from the sacraments, he even make the statement that all religions are the same. One of his poor sons, who was deprived of the inestimable gift of the Catholic faith, said: “I consider myself a deist”. A year ago when I telephoned our brother, he expressed to me his preoccupation about the date, December 21, 2012. Those who reject God the Creator will end up filling the void and believing in something; in this case, the infallible guide for my friend was no longer God, Jesus Christ, or the Church Christ founded, the Catholic Church with the Pope as the head, but science. I described to my friend what science had discovered, with the help of the computer, what the wise men saw 2000 years ago which motivated them to make a trip of about 1000 kilometers in order to find the King of the Jews born in Bethlehem. Unfortunately, after I finished this explanation, my friend was not interested in continuing our conversation on the phone since his infallible guide, science, had confirmed the extraordinary signs left by the Creator in the giant precise system of orbiting bodies in the universe, regarding the birth of Jesus Christ (http://spir-food.blogspot.com/2011/01/epiphany.html). (“Not 2012 But 2017!”; http://god-politics.blogspot.com/2012/03/not-2012-but-2017.html).
What the world does not tell us, as well as so many leaders in the Church due to human respect, is that true love means respecting our great dignity, being created in the image of God (Gen 1:26-27) and thus RESPECTING OUR CHOICE, OUR FREE WILL, even if we choose to eternally destroy ourselves by running from the Truth. The dignity, and thus the responsibility of parents, priests and bishops is very great! Saint John Crisostomo, Saint John Eudes and Saint Athanasius wrote about what the floor (bones of priests and religious) and the lamps (skulls of bishops) in hell are made of! OUR LADY AT GARABANDAL (Spain, 1965) revealed that "many cardinals, many bishops and many priests are following the road to perdition, and with them they are taking many more souls.” Contrary to common belief, the Catholic Church has never condemned Garabandal (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garabandal_apparitions). It is very interesting that Our Lady revealed this at about the time that Pope Paul VI published Humanae Vitae, reaffirming the Churches constant teaching that artificial contraception is a grave sin and will end up destroying society and the family, the fundamental cell of society, by separating the marital act from responsibility and life, and by leading men to see women as sexual objects rather than as persons to love. A great number of lay people, priests and bishops ignored or rebelled against Humanae Vitae. Now is the first time in history that there are more grandparents than children; this is the fundamental reason for the crash of the economy – there are not enough children to pay for the retirement pensions. I once told my parishioners that if sometime in the future I begin to loose the faith and to preach in opposition to what the Pope teaches on faith and morals, “DO NOT FOLLOW ME TO HELL”! “But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to that which we preached to you, let him be accursed” (Gal 1:8). We must pray very much for the first targets of Satan, those who received more responsibility in the “dour combat”, as Our Lady asks us often: PRAY FOR THE POPE, BISHOPS AND THE PRIESTS! Just as a mother cannot substitute for the role and the vocation of the father, and vise versa, so too the lay people cannot substitute for the priests and the bishops but can pray and offer sacrifices for them!
At a bar here in Italy, which also sells magazines, where I live and go for a cup of coffee after my daily Mass, one of the wives (co-owner of the bar; two family owners), was talking about the calendar, which they sell, with a completely nude woman on the front. I said to her that she will have to render an account to God after her death for selling pornography in her store. She was not happy with me and became frustrated. I then said to her that we men, as God has created us, when we habitually look at pornography without repenting and seeking to amend our lives, begin to look upon women as objects of pleasure instead of persons to appreciate and to esteem. She said with indignation: “But who says this?” I answered, Pope Paul VI in Humanae Vitae! I then said to her that when husbands, who are habituated to looking at pornography, make love with their wives, they are making love with the image of the pornography in their head, not with their wives, which is a true betrayal! Italians in general are very adept to making banal everything including the most sacred things of our faith. A week later her husband put a poster (about 36x24 inches) of a fully naked woman outside at the entrance of his bar in public view. When I protested he justified himself with an attitude of arrogance and laughing at me saying that God made women beautiful so why not look at them? He then pulled out another copy of what he posted outside his bar to show it to me close up inside the bar. I said that according to his logic men then should look at beautiful naked women and then leave their wives and break up the family and leave the children abandoned! He continued to joke and laugh at me. I am even more sad that the Pastor of the parish, who was present, just smiled and laughed at the inappropriate jokes so as to be in agreement with everyone as his way of treating others in a nice way and not being in disagreement with anyone! This Pastor is very generous and kind but it seems to me that his definition of “love” is to try to offer what the people want so that the people are all happy; when there is a conflict of interests between what he thinks the people want and what one reads in the Bible as explained by the Catechism of the Catholic Church, he ignores or pushes aside what the people do not want to hear.
To read the rest of this experience, visit: http://wordbelife.blogspot.it/2013/04/james-59.html.
If we do not seek the Truth with much suffering and prayer, listening to those who do not agree with us, there is a great risk of not spending eternity with the Truth! The Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC 1035) as well as the saints clearly tell us that the greatest pain in hell, more than all other pains put together, is the total and absolute and eternal separation of the creature from its Creator, Who is the TRUTH! The great majority of the people today have taken as their philosophy of life: “Ignorance is bliss”! Saint Faustina (died 1938) wrote in her diary: “Today, I was led by an Angel to the chasms of hell… But I noticed one thing: that MOST OF THE SOULS THERE ARE THOSE WHO DISBELIEVED THAT THERE IS A HELL.” (Diary, 741). Today, a great number of people have conveniently and willingly swallowed this lie that hell and the devil do not exist! Even many bishops have lost the faith and are leading many souls with them (http://www.speroforum.com/site/article.asp?id=2879; http://www.vaticans.org/index.php?/archives/61-An-interview-with-the-Vaticans-chief-excorcist,-Father-Gabriele.html)!
So many people today have opted for the easier choice of not seeking the Truth outside their own heads and have convinced themselves that hell does not exist so that there are no consequences for not seeking and living the Truth. Relativism, according to Pope Benedict XVI, is "the most profound difficulty of our time." (http://popebenedictxviblog.blogspot.it/2005_05_01_archive.html; http://www.vatican.va/gpII/documents/homily-pro-eligendo-pontifice_20050418_en.html).
I realize that some of the topics in this letter are rather personal and revealing about the great lackings in our “dysfunctional family”. It might seem disrespectful to talk about these things while our mother is still alive, but it helps tremendously for each of us to understand our roots so as to see if we have been led knowingly or unknowingly, culpably or not culpably, in some wrong directions which have hindered us, often in a significant way, from arriving to true happiness which can only be found from the One Who created us.
I realize that these words would have been very difficult for me to understand years ago, and still more difficult to not reject immediately without pondering on these words with an open mind. But with the death of John and all that we have all gone through as a “dysfunctional family” (as you put it Pat), I think it might be of help for those of us who are willing to learn from each other and willing to take the risk of dialogue among ourselves. But this is not easy; it takes a lot of sincere prayer and humility to be able to open ourselves up to consider the possibility that we have allowed ourselves to take the wrong way out of pride or out of taking the easy way without restrictions from outside of ourselves, in particular, from God’s saving laws. I believe it is of the utmost importance, to save our very immortal souls, to talk about these things even though in this email I have indicated some of the fundamental lackings, culpable or non culpable, of our parents which have greatly influenced each of us. Saint Thomas Aquinas wrote: “Rarely affirm, seldom deny, always distinguish.” We must distinguish between the objective and the subjective; we must judge the actions which are objectively wrong so as not to do the same and perhaps give fraternal correction, but we should never judge subjectively, that is, the persons moral guilt which only God knows, since we do not know their motives, their intentions, their whole life’s history or even the graces and knowledge they have received from God. Those who are running away from the Truth do not want to make this distinction and thus accuse those who condemn the sin of condemning the sinner; this is why the homosexuals are very angered with the true Christians who hate the sin as Christ does (the act of homosexuality) but love the sinner (the person with the homosexual orientation).
But it can help a lot to see where we have come from, to be able to shed light on some of the psychological and spiritual traps we have been led into, as well as some of the things that have hurt us and led us in the wrong direction to our great detriment and spiritual blindness and possible eternal separation from our Creator. While we are alive everything can be changed with a good confession and a change of life with lots of daily prayer. The saints tell us that those who pray end up being saved; those who do not pray end up losing their immortal souls. After death, nothing can be changed for all eternity whether we believe it or not! This is why I also sent this email to our relatives (bcc) so as to offer them these thoughts about our roots that we all have inherited in one way or another.
I remember once Dad saying that it is not good to talk to children about a bad teacher that they might have in school at the time, but later in life it can help to sit down and talk about some of the non positive influences that were received by such a teacher.
What was the reaction of King David in the Old Testament when the prophet Nathan (2 Sam 12:1-13) pointed out the truth to David? Did David say to Nathan that your words are “very offensive” and thus refused to communicate with Nathan from then on? David had humility even though he was the king of all of Israel.
Those with some humility will probably end up being grateful for the concern of someone else to offer fraternal correction and wish to continue dialogue to learn more so as to go toward greater freedom in the Truth; those with little or no humility will most likely rebel and become even more hardened in their chosen path and reject any further dialogue with those who offer such correction even with all the best intentions, and perhaps even close in on themselves into a closed group. But even though there is this risk, God tells us to offer fraternal correction for the good of the one offered council and for others who might have been scandalized.
“If I say to the wicked, O wicked man, you shall surely die, and you do not speak to warn the wicked to turn from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at your hand. But if you warn the wicked to turn from his way, and he does not turn from his way; he shall die in his iniquity, but you will have saved your life.” (Ezek 33:8-9).
“If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every word may be confirmed by the evidence of two or three witnesses. …” (Mt 18:15-16).
Pat, tell me why you do not agree, let us dialogue to seek the truth together. Eternity is at stake!
I am sorry to hear about your motorcycle accident and the damage to your legs. As I said at the end of our phone call Pat: “I want to spend eternity with you!” I want to play tennis with you for all eternity, not just during this very short life. But there is no Easter without Good Friday, and there is no Resurrection without the crucifixion in our own personal lives in union with Christ crucified! “The Truth (big “T”) shall set you free”!!! (Jn 8:32), not the false truth (little “t”) of relativism so pervasive and destructive in our culture today! (About relativism, read the homily of Cardinal Ratzinger at the Mass preceding the conclave that quickly elected him Pope Benedict XVI: http://www.vatican.va/gpII/documents/homily-pro-eligendo-pontifice_20050418_en.html). “I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life; no one comes to the Father, but by Me” (Jn 14:6). Many try to copout of the responsibilities of living our call to seek and live the Truth by saying “Who knows” (agnostics) or even flat out denying the Truth. But I say to these type of “Catholics” here in Italy that to carry this logic to it’s logical conclusion would imply that God is an idiot because He gave us the ability to reason and yet did not offer to His rational creatures the possibility to use this reason to discover the Truth so as to serve the Truth and then to spend eternity with the Truth in heaven, as we learned as children in the catechism.
If I truly want well for you Pat (as they say in Italian: “Ti voglio bene!”), true love, I want well for you above all for all eternity and not just this very short life, which is the kind of love that so many offer today, even among many priests and bishops. This is misguided compassion; this is false love!
I tell the Italians in my parishes to pray the Rosary like their grandparents did everyday as a family. Many give me the excuse that there is no time and that 70 years ago there was no TV and they worked together in the fields. I respond to them that it is certainly more difficult today to pray the family rosary as Fr. Patrick Peyton told the families to do 70 years ago. But God gives the grace of the vocation for each person, in particular in this case, to the father of the family to truly be the provider but above all the protector and leader spiritually to be able to say to those in his family after supper: “Let us turn off the TV and pray the Rosary together!” If something is important to each of us, we find time for that; if something is not very important to us, we never find time for that! Each one decides his priorities and God will respect that choice, because God is true Love, for all eternity! God will not force anyone to spend eternity with Him in heaven!
God does not change His mind. He created us with great dignity in His own image (Gen 1:26-27), equal to the angels, and He will respect this great dignity and corresponding responsibility and not treat us as animals after our death, even if we freely decide to forfeit this dignity and responsibility during our life time so as to live as animals which do not have an immortal soul.
Forgive me if I write a little too straight forward, but as you know I received my BA in mathematics. But I have come to realize that this was probably a blessing in disguise since the liberal arts departments of almost all the major universities adopted a very secular mind set to the point of becoming very Christophobic, rewriting history according to their nihilist agenda and excluding good literature such as the writings of G.K. Chesterton. It was more difficult for these God-less activists to change mathematical formulas even though the great majority of the professors in the science and math departments do not have the humility to open their eyes to the possibility of a personal Creator. I told my bishop that in mathematics I studied infinity which led me later to discovered eternity, but few professors made the same logical conclusion; faith and reason are not in opposition because they both come from the same Creator! It is far more illogical to seek to blot out and circumvent all the indications of an intelligent design in creation than to open ones mind and receive the facts and reality as they are perceived with our 5 senses in creation! Obviously the fundamental motives to choose this destructive illogic is to not submit to Someone bigger than oneself and to believe that there are no negative consequences for ones actions after death. After I entered seminary training, I began to develop a real desire and yearning to learn from the documents of the Church and the true and the false philosophical and theological foundations that lead us toward the eternal Truth and true freedom and joy, or away from the eternal Truth which gives one an initial feeling of pride and self-satisfaction but later becomes the worst kind of slavery. It takes work and effort to seek the Truth but it also takes work and a conscious effort to run from and blot out this Truth stamped into our very human nature by the Creator. It is interesting that in the USA, more than in Europe, there has been a reaction to this radical secularization of the universities, including most Catholic universities; there have sprung up recently many new Catholic universities loyal to the Truth protected by the authority of the Church that Christ left us here on earth before ascending to heaven. The numerous universities which have abandoned the Truth protected by Christ’s Church will die out as the Truth seekers will have to build new universities. This reminds me of how it is getting more and more difficult for the “Pro Choice” movement to find youth to carry forth the flag of the culture of death, because they have murdered so many of their children even before they had the chance to make their “CHOICE”, to live or to die, to kill others or to give them a chance to live!
In our times we can see that in modern man there is a growing tendency to disregard God, because God is considered to be too demanding and uncomfortable. Under the influence of many factors, people want to put God aside by simply eliminating Him from their lives as a useless and superfluous Being. Behind this attitude there lies a cultural view which takes the conquests of science as its starting point and sets out to convince us that scientific and technological progress will more and more enable man to solve his problems and conquer the world on his own. Modern man therefore thinks he is self-sufficient and this is his great sin. Without God man is deprived of his true meaning. Another way of shrugging off God, for people who do believe in him, is to not recognize or to deny the practical consequences of their faith. We Christians too, can often recognize ourselves in those Pharisees and Sadducees whom John the Baptist berated (Mt 3:8). How often we are Christians more because of certain inherited habits or a smattering of religious instruction, rather than out of deep conviction or a conscious choice of God! Do we not perhaps reduce our Christianity to external practices and conditions without committing ourselves to carrying out God's commandments, particularly the commandment to love our neighbor, in particular the ones most vulnerable and weak, the “smallest of my brethren” (Mt 25:40)?
We know that, in these modem times, to renounce asserting our independence and to open ourselves to the power of God is often considered to be a humiliation or a form of alienation. The fact is, however, that by asserting our own independence we become closed within ourselves and in the end we run up against our own limitations. If, instead, we open ourselves to God, we welcome into our lives One Who is greater than we are Who can truly help us to fulfil ourselves and be happy.
May I also take this opportunity to wish you a Holy Christmas with Baby Jesus, born in utter poverty, and later died naked and rejected on a cross for each of us, and Who is waiting for each of us in the tabernacle in every Catholic Church. Mary, His Mother, will help us imitate and follower her divine Child if we ask her, especially with the Holy Rosary! Without this divine help, it will be impossible to not get sucked into the very strong mentality of our society today poisoned with the culture of death and promoted with all the motors of our God-less, nihilistic, secular culture (mass media, schools, religious institutions, governments) using attractive slogans and beautiful lies. I would rather be a fool for Christ than politically correct! “He who denies Me before men will be denied before the angels of God” (Lk 12:9). No government or any group on earth can offer me eternal happiness in heaven. Only Jesus Christ can offer me eternal life, whether we believe this Truth or not!
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P.s. The following is what I wrote to Mom in May 2012 after having tried to call several times without any response on the telephone except the phone secretary.
Since no one responds anymore to my phone calls to your house, as it has been also for Russ and Ann since they left the Church, may I wish you a Happy Mothers day by normal mail?
Have a nice day.
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I will no longer call you by phone unless you indicate to me otherwise.
I discovered by various emails sent to me, which also contained the email address of Russ and Ann, that Russ and Ann do receive my monthly emails but have NEVER responded to my emails. That is why a year ago I stopped sending a Christmas card to Russ and Ann, and they promptly stopped sending to me their Christmas card the following year, even though they never wrote anything on their Christmas cards in the past except “Merry Christmas”. Pouting can easily become a grave sin and separation from God if not resisted and fought against with much diligence and prayer and spiritual direction.
If people do not have even a little drop of humility to seek the Truth (big “T”) outside of their own head or outside of their own little groups (cults) which totally agree with what they want to believe inside their own heads (little “t”), they will never discover the Truth, Who is Jesus Christ. You can lead a horse to water but you cannot force the horse to drink. Out of love, God totally respects our free will, to seek and live the Truth outside of our heads, or to NOT seek and live the Truth, found outside of our own wisdom and intelligence, in creation and divine Revelation. God will not force anyone to spend eternity with the Truth, Who is Jesus! As Pope Benedict has pointed out many times, the greatest trap of the devil today is “relativism” in which each person decides the truth according to his or her likes and desires. One reads only what is in agreement with oneself or the cult that agrees with them. Reality is interpreted by themselves alone. In this way they make themselves gods who can decide good and evil, the truth, and even reality by themselves, which is fundamentally Original Sin (Gen 3:4-5). But the problem is, in the real heaven created by the real God for those who willing learn from Jesus Who is meek and humble of heart (Mt 11:29), there is room for only one God, not two!
“I thank thee, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to babes; yea, Father, for such was thy gracious will” (Mt 11:25; Lk 10:21)!
It is interesting how pride makes us blind: for little things scruples, for big things no scruples!
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I write these things because I do not want you to suffer after death. The great majority of so-called “friends” today want you to be happy for this very short life but eternity, as it really is, does not matter at all. This is false “love” detached from the cross and from the Truth (relativism!). Pope John Paul II when asked what verse in all of the Bible to leave to the people of God, he answered without hesitation: “The Truth Shall Set You Free (Jn 8:32), because he knew very well that the vast majority of people today do not want to seek the Truth outside of their own heads or their restricted group which agrees with them. If one seeks the truth, there is the risk that they will have to change their lives and suffer or have to give up their great attachment to their pride of deciding all things for themselves. “Ignorance is bliss”, bliss perhaps now but not later or after death for all eternity!
By now, who will you let communicate to you from outside of your chosen and erected closure, from outside of your closed mentality who does not agree with you? It seems that the only option I have left to be able to help you is to put into practice the request of our Lady of Fatima who urged us to prayer and make sacrifices for the conversion of sinners!