~ Venom Masquerading as Virtue ~
It was Pope Leo XIII who branded oxymoronic Liberal Catholics "the worst enemies of the Church" [Humanum Genus]. His predecessors and successors were equally insistent, however: while opposition from outside is terrible, providing many martyrs, the Church has more to fear from her own traitors.
Prelates and priests have been at this treacherous forefront since Judas. Indeed, Arianism, Nestorianism, Lutheranism and other major heresies have damned their names in perpetuity.
Today, heretical Churchmen have been spared this singular identification. Since all the anathematised errors of history have now coalesced, individual wickedness is diffused within a corporate promotion of the "synthesis of all heresies." Its sweeping label, Modernism, provides generic cover for the fumes of amorphous Liberalism to swirl where they will: unattributed; faceless; poisoning every Catholic tenet, ideal and activity.
By contrast, our third century forebears at least knew the progenitor of Arian and semi-Arian views. They had fixed and personal reference points by which to comprehend and counter the errors of the day. This is why Christian Order has never baulked at personalising the heresies and scandals perpetrated or tolerated by prelates and priests. It took the explosion of heterodoxy and heresy in the form of the sexual abuse crisis for our naive critics to finally perceive that their false charity had allowed heretics to flourish within the anonymity of the Modernist collective. Yet many of the worst episcopal offenders still escape mainstream scrutiny. Alas, for the above reasons, they probably always will.
Humeism, Worlockism, Cormacism... how such 'isms' would underline the capitulation of our smiley-faced British sell outs: enshrining their landmark Modernist contributions in the annals of infamy. To future generations, for instance, Nicholism would generally denote 'the secularisation of faith and morals' synonymous with Westminster's current hireling, Vincent Nichols. In particular, it would call to mind the blasphemy and sacrilege of his 'gay' Masses, and his "Who knows what's down the road?" school of New Evangelisation (which left even the blessing of "gay unions" by the Church an open question — CO, Nov. 2010, p. 20).
Normalising the abnormal
Meanwhile, like bishops everywhere, the rest of the local hierarchy, with a handful of notable exceptions, hide behind the untouchable likes of Archbishop Nichols (the public face of their own infidelity), and meld within the faceless episcopal mob.
The latest capitulation is laid out in their recent draft response to the godless Equality Act 2010: Applying Equality Law in Practice: Guidance for Catholics and Catholic Organisations. As SPUC has stated, "the Bishops’ Conference is identifying the promotion of ‘the benefits’ of a law which, among other things, upholds same-sex ‘marriage’, civil partnerships, and ‘gender reassignment’ with giving witness to the Gospel of Jesus Christ."
Effectively, the draft clarifies what the Archbishop of Westminster foresaw "down the road" in terms of sanctioned sexual deviance. Among other horrors, it contains the following:
Transsexual people face many difficulties before, during and after transitioning to another gender. As such it is recommended to seek guidance on how to make the transitional process as easy as possible. This could include training for co-workers, as well as reference to medical and social advice.
In lending Catholic credibility to the normalisation of sex-change sickness, the Bishops of England and Wales have fallen in line with state-sponsored propagandists: such as the armed forces of more than a dozen nations that permit 'transgenders' in their ranks.
In response, Elaine Donnelly, president of the Center for Military Readiness, insisted that "the majority of men and women in uniform ... should not be forced to participate in an unprecedented social experiment that does nothing to strengthen our military." Even more importantly, as revealed in Dr McHugh's expert analysis herein, it does nothing to address the underlying psycho-social troubles of the individuals concerned.
The episcopal complicity is breathtaking — and yet routine. For decades the bishops of England and Wales have failed to educate, organise and rally the Church Militant to stand firm before the neo-pagan assault. The negligence is wicked enough. But in consistently teaching their flock, whether implicitly or explicitly (as above), that moral perversion is now acceptable, they have made eager common cause with secular powers feverishly drafting a degenerate anti-Christian culture by statute.
The CO archives are replete with evidence of this studious collaboration. Even occasional half-hearted attempts to stand firm have ended in predictable compromise: attempted deals with morally bankrupt governments to save irremediable legislation inevitably backfiring (cf. the 2004 Mental Capacity Bill fiasco starring Archbishop Peter Smith; see "Government as God," CO, May 2008). But the episcopate's 2005 Diversity and Equality Guidelines are more representative of the shameless acquiescence. A document that supported and enshrined in Church practice the British government and EU laws on the equal employment rights of sodomites, lesbians, bisexuals and transsexuals, we labelled it a 'Deviants' Charter.' While a cardinal visiting these shores considered it the greatest betrayal since the Reformation.
The current draft response to the 2010 Equality Act is, therefore, a mere affirmation of the earlier 2005 document. Just the latest in a long line of low blows to the Faith and faithful that posits good as evil, and evil as good. It evokes St. John's depiction of the heretic as a seducer: a hierarchy compounding the secular corruption of souls by sins of omission (failing to teach the salvific truths about mortal sin that perverts man's nature and dignity, leading to eternal damnation) and sins of commission (effectively sanctioning mortal sin and moral corruption).
As shocking as we find this relentless secularisation of faith and morals, we should not be surprised. Several painful decades have confirmed that shepherds who lose their salt have no moral or doctrinal bottom line. A clear and present danger to their flock, they studiously avoid the Four Last Things while preaching a cheap grace that desalinates their flock, making them equally complicit in every godless travesty. They either no longer comprehend, or simply find it too embarrassing to contemplate that people can only understand the Good News (Jesus saves us from sin) if they understand the bad news first (unrepented, mortal sin ends in death and hell).
As a Modernist bloc they have avoided Luther's personal notoriety even while replicating his appeal to the lower instincts of human nature and its heretical outcome. As explained in the Catholic Encyclopaedia:
The masses of the people were not slow in drawing from these [Lutheran] doctrines the practical conclusion that sin was sin no longer, was, in fact, equal to a good work. For the next 130 years the history of the German people is a record of religious strife, moral degradation, artistic retrogression, industrial breakdown; of civil wars, pillage, devastation, and general ruin.
Have not local hierarchies similarly overseen the descent to liturgical, doctrinal and moral strife, degradation, breakdown, ruin, retrogression and devastation within? Simultaneously failing to resist, when not actively assisting the legal persecution of Christians without?
Remember: holy Ireland saw off the pagans. It was Protestant heretics that all but annihilated the nation in a Catholic persecution as unrelenting and barbaric as any holocaust in history. "No English Luther arose, but the unholy work was thoroughly done by kings and parliaments, by means of a series of penal laws unequalled in severity," as a Jesuit author described the persecutory process. And now the English bishops are acquiescing in coercive 'Equality' legislation that seeks the same wicked end by unbloody means.
Complicity as Charity
Commenting on the long-running Anglican pantomime, Reverend Peter Mullin could have been talking about us:
Iconoclasm like an ever-rolling stream bears away all that the historic church has stood for. Once the liberal bishops got the ascendancy, they simply promoted their own kind for the next forty years. And the takeover was complete. But not quite complete. There was more work to be done. [...]
What we now have is not just a modernised [Anglican] church, but a church which is so far gone into apostasy that it has actually adopted the agenda of its enemies. All the jargon of 'diversity' and 'multiculturalism,' 'equality' and 'inclusivity' has replaced the language and teaching of the gospel.
The first pontiff to use insidious 'gay' jargon to reference the sin that cries to heaven and its degenerate practitioners, Francis embodies that assessment. As does Cardinal Schönborn, who last May offered his public congratulations to bearded transvestite Thomas Neuwirth, aka 'Conchita Wurst,' for his success at the Eurovision Song Contest. The Cardinal's official Facebook page carried the following comment:
It is said on the first page of the Bible: “And God created man to his own image… male and female he created them.” How wonderful, this idea of God’s. What a dull and dreary place the world would be if it were populated by one sex exclusively. The mutual attraction between man and woman is what makes life interesting. The complementarity of the sexes is something both precious and wonderful. None of us would be here today if a man and a woman had not conceived us in what was, hopefully, an act of true love, giving us the gift of life.
Yet, as we all know, God’s garden is full of diversity. Not everyone who was born a man identifies as such; the same goes for many women. As human beings, they deserve the same respect that we all have a right to. I am happy for Thomas Neuwirth who has been acclaimed for his recent performance as Conchita Wurst. It is my sincere hope that success does not go to his head and I pray for God’s blessing in his life.
From year to year this modus operandi —complicity as charity — never falters. But how do we love our neighbour when we abandon him to error and vice? When we lead him into spiritual death and 'transgendered' misery?
Arianism: lessons and echoes
Truly, the multiple scandals and infractions of our diabolically disoriented popes, prelates and priests make notorious heresiarchs of yore seem like single-issue Fathers of the Church!
The heretical forthrightness of Arius, who got straight down to doctrinal business, is almost like a breath of fresh air compared to Modernistic sleight of hand and social gospel special pleading. Despite widespread support for his errors, the equally forthright condemnation by at least some authorities also indicates how today's mess, as apparently intractable as the Arian crisis, could and should be tackled — head on, through the charitable and unyielding exercise of authority, for the common good.
Ordained deacon then made presbyter by the Bishop of Alexandria in 313, Father Arius was no dissolute Martin Luther demagogue. Though "disputatious," his moral character was never questioned "except doubtfully of ambition." He also approximated our Modernists with "winning manners" and "an evasive style." Indeed, he might have sat unnoticed and unremarked among the massed neo-Modernist ranks at this month's Synod in Rome but for one thing: his honesty.
Unlike today's clerical Arians and semi-Arians discussed in the June-July editorial, the fourth century heresiarch never sought to disguise his position. He openly denied the divinity of Christ, reducing the Word of God to a mere work and creation of God like us: "For the Son is a thing created, and a thing made: nor is He like to the Father in substance; nor is He the true and natural Word of the Father...."
[...] 5. By these arguments and references to the sacred Scriptures we frequently overthrew them; but they changed like chameleons, and again shifted their ground, striving to bring upon themselves that sentence, when the wicked falls into the depth of evils, he despises. There have been many heresies before them, which, venturing further than they ought, have fallen into folly; but these men by endeavouring in all their cavils to overthrow the Divinity of the Word, have justified the other in comparison of themselves, as approaching nearer to Antichrist. Wherefore they have been excommunicated and anathematised by the Church. We grieve for their destruction, and especially because, having once been instructed in the doctrines of the Church, they have now sprung away. Yet we are not greatly surprised, for Hymenæus and Philetus 2 Timothy 2:17 did the same, and before them Judas, who followed the Saviour, but afterwards became a traitor and an apostate. And concerning these same persons, we have not been left without instruction; for our Lord has forewarned us; Take heed lest any man deceive you: for many shall come in My name, saying, I am Christ, and the time draws near, and they shall deceive many: go ye not after them Luke 21:8; while Paul, who was taught these things by our Saviour, wrote that in the latter times some shall depart from the sound faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils, which reject the truth.
This passage captures the essence of our present-day hirelings. Having rejected the truth, however openly or slyly, they have given themselves up to the whispering serpents of secularism: even to facilitating the hellish agenda of sexual deviants. St. Alexander continued:
6. Since then our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ has instructed us by His own mouth, and also has signified to us by the Apostle concerning such men, we accordingly being personal witnesses of their impiety, have anathematised, as we said, all such, and declared them to be alien from the Catholic Faith and Church. And we have made this known to your piety, dearly beloved and most honoured fellow-ministers, in order that should any of them have the boldness to come unto you, you may not receive them, nor comply with the desire of Eusebius [of Nicomedia], or any other person writing in their behalf. For it becomes us who are Christians to turn away from all who speak or think any thing against Christ, as being enemies of God, and destroyers of souls; and not even to bid such God speed 2 John 10, lest we become partakers of their sins, as the blessed John has charged us. Salute the brethren that are with you. They that are with me salute you.
Issued several years before the bishops of every country were called to Nicaea to settle the theological issue (though the heresy continued to blight nascent European civilisation for centuries), Alexander's Encyclical Letter on Arius could have been written this morning. But since that would put politically correct seducers like Cardinal Schönborn, Archbishop Nichols, and entire episcopal conferences in the firing line, the very idea of denouncing rampant heterodoxy and heresy is a non-starter. Especially as the ideological self-interest is complemented and compounded by dogmatic disinterest. Papal spokesman Fr. Lombardi alluded to it when he duly acknowledged (in case we hadn't noticed) the "new genre of papal speech not concerned with precision." Far from revolutionary and ruinous, this studied imprecision — textbook Modernism — is suddenly deemed laudatory and de rigueur.
In other words, St. Alexander's words addressed to the Arian heretics and their enablers — "Enemies of God, and destroyers of souls" — resound in our time, with this rider: Rome itself has joined the 2 John 10-"partakers of their sins."
Colluding with the corporate state and entertainment-media to create a parallel reality, local shepherds continue to lead their lambs to the sodomitic slaughter, insisting they shut up and "hold their tongue," as Archbishop Nichols spat at his 'gay' Mass critics. Post-Benedict, however, HQ now spouts the same party line, typically captured in a Catholic Herald headline of early July: "Avoid 'extreme reactions' to gay marriage, Vatican tells Catholics." A dumbing down consistent with pontifical pleas to stop "obsessing" over abortion, to cease "proselytising" non-Catholics, to just "live and let live" — among other secular liberal panaceas for a happy life offered by Francis last July.
No wonder so many faithful of goodwill have been coaxed into easy accommodation and silence. Even those conversant with heresy remain blissfully unaware of the toll the zeitgeist has taken on their shepherds (to include the chief shepherd) — and, consequently, on major formative instruments of their own faith and life: the priesthood, liturgy, and catechesis; corruption of which has undermined or effaced basic doctrines: ex nihilo creation, the Divinity of Christ, Transubstantiation, et. al..
This top-down erosion of knowledge and conviction among the Catholic middle-ground is manifest in the Lutheranesque dilution of sin and its consequences. At the "Understanding the Times Conference" held in Minneapolis last April, Dr. Erwin Lutzer, a senior pastor, described the mentality and its dire implications. Like Peter Mullen, he is addressing a Protestant audience. But again, it could have been a Catholic one:
This is the rub. If you are 40 years old or younger, there’s the 40-40 split in America. If you are under 40, you probably belong to a group of evangelicals who basically see nothing wrong with same sex marriage. They are more tolerant, saying that there may be other religions that lead you to God, so on and so forth. I say it humbly: They don’t have much of a clue. Not everybody of course, but many of them have no clue what the implications are or what the real issues are. They were reared by [sodomitic sitcom] “Will and Grace” on television.
[...] So there are those who say we can’t preach against homosexuality or mention Islam or anything because we want to win these people to Christ, and that’s a barrier. So what we’ve found is that the gospel and its implications are often dumbed down. Then you have a form of ecumenism that compromises the gospel. And then there’s something else: it’s popular today to say, “God loves you unconditionally.”
Now, to the one who’s sitting in the pew that’s sleeping with his girlfriend, he says to himself, “I know exactly what that means. That means that it’s okay for me to continue to sleep with my girlfriend because, after all, God loves me unconditionally. That’s His job. That’s who He is."
You see it used to be, and some of you who are older would remember this, that preachers used to preach against sin, and then when people knew that they couldn’t live up to God’s standard, and they were aware of their sin, then grace was offered to them. ...
Today grace is offered up front. Grace is offered to people when they don’t even know they need it and whether or not they really care as to whether or not they want it because God loves you 'unconditionally.' Not to put too fine a point on it, but there are several different passages in Scripture in the Psalms where God says, “I am angry with the wicked every day.”
Repentance and restitution
Filled as they are with similar receptacles of cheap grace, English pews are not about to erupt in outrage and disgust at the latest drip-feed of episcopal venom, masquerading as virtue, into the Mystical Body of Christ.
Clearly, the Lord's command to "offer no resistance to one who is evil" [Matt. 5:38-42] does not sanction complicity in evil. But this elementary distinction grounded in Catholic truth and justice has been so muddied by their disoriented leaders that authentic charity — which "groans amidst evildoing and breathes naturally in the truth" (St. Caesarius) — is now an alien concept to the hapless faithful. Hence very few confess, while many receive Communion. All they know is the so-called Civilisation of Love: a sorry simulacrum of love that smothers the truth and sooths evildoers for fear of upsetting them.
Besides: Who knows what's down the road? Who are they to judge? Far better, like Francis, to leave dreaded judgmentalism to
"Those who always look for disciplinarian solutions, those who long for an exaggerated doctrinal 'security,' those who stubbornly try to recover a past that no longer exists."
Those, in other words, like us. Those who recognise the Church "in eclipse," forewarned at La Salette, when they see and hear it!
Since he has also rightly lamented a general lack of penitence — of "not being ashamed of what we have done" — let us pray daily for the Vicar of Christ: that repenting of his shameful Modernistic outburst above, he might resolve instead to offer Catholic restitution along these lines to those he has smeared:
Those selected out of supernatural grace [Rm 11:5] who stubbornly hold to Catholic truth. Those who rightly look to their Holy Father for paternal protection. Those who long for his condemnation of ancient heresies which still exist: spewing forth as cheap grace "according to the precepts and doctrines of men," preached by those who "serve not Christ our Lord, but their own belly; and by pleasing speeches and good words, seduce the hearts of the innocent" [Col 2:22; Rm 16:18].