The following comes from a Jan. 3 story on Reuters.
Pope Francis has said men studying for the Roman Catholic priesthood should be properly trained or the Church could risk “creating little monsters” more concerned with their careers than serving people.
In comments made in November but only published on Friday, Francis also said priests should leave their comfort zone and get out among people on the margins of society, otherwise they may turn into “abstract ideologists”.
The Italian Jesuit journal Civilta Cattolica published an exclusive text of the comments, made in a three-hour, closed-door meeting the Argentinian-born pontiff had in late November with heads of orders of priests from around the world.
“Formation (of future priests) is a work of art, not a police action. We must form their hearts. Otherwise we are creating little monsters. And then these little monsters mould the people of God. This really gives me goose bumps,” he said.
Since his election in 2013 as the first non-European pope in 1,300 years, Francis has been prodding priests, nuns and bishops to think less about their careers in the Church and to listen more to the needs of ordinary Catholics, especially the poor.
Taking over an institution reeling from child sex abuse, financial and other scandals and losing members to other religions, Francis has tried to refocus on the basic Christian teachings of compassion, simplicity and humility.
His conversation with the members of the Union of Superiors General is important because they will transmit his wishes directly to priests in their religious orders around the world.
Francis said men should not enter the priesthood to seek a comfortable life or to rise up the clerical career ladder.
“The ghost to fight against is the image of religious life understood as an escape or hiding place in face of an ‘external’ difficult and complex world,” he told them.
He made a brief, indirect reference to the sexual abuse crisis, saying a man who has been asked to leave one seminary should not be admitted to another easily.
Francis said priests had to have “real contact with the poor” and other marginalized members of society.
“This is really very important to me: the need to become acquainted with reality by experience, to spend time walking on the periphery in order really to become acquainted with the reality and life-experiences of people,” he told them.
To read the entire story, click here.
Thank you for publishing the Holy Father’s remarks regarding the formation of priests. I look forward to many more articles about Pope Francis.
Yes, those little monsters are in the lay far right wing, so long friends!!! I love our Holy Father! It is wonderful that he is a JESUIT, I RECALL that the far right wing crazy folks were attacking the JESUITS a few months ago, what happen?!!!!!
TEM, all the little monster priests I have known (and those who have grown up into becoming bishops) were on the extreme left, for lack of a better term, The monsters have challenged the teachings of the church and produced their own versions. These changes have embraced sodomy, abortion, contraception and a host of other evils. Yes, there were many Jesuits among them, as well as Dominicans and Franciscans.
Pope Francis, said the opposite: Civilta Cattolica is the same periodical that ran a landmark interview with Francis in September in which he said the Church must shake off an obsession with teachings on abortion, contraception and homosexuality and become more merciful. Francis, known as the “slum bishop” in Argentina because of his work among the poor, said reaching out to marginalized people was “the most concrete way of imitating Jesus”.
The Far Right wing will prevail TEM, of course you have no issue with the Far Left Wing, sodomite loving, lesbian clipped hair nun type, well bad news they are dying off… Thank God
A priest is supposed to serve God and the Church. Unfortunately, many priests serve only themselves. A priest is ‘another Christ’, but many have as their motto: “what’s in it for me?” For over 35 years I have tried to serve God with joy and gladness, and the majority of the suffering I have encountered has come from selfish clergy who are trying to climb the ladder of success. One priest pastor yelled at me because I had two emergency calls from the local hospital. The pastor told me, :Let them die and go to hell without a priest!” Another priest, was going on a three week vacation. I offered him the use of my Mass kit. He responded haughtily by saying, ‘when I am on vacation, neither do I celebrate Mass, not do I attend Mass.’ These are but two of the scandalous examples I can sight. Sometimes I can joke on how I wish I were a monsignor. But when it gets down to it, I am a soldier for Christ and His Church, and all kidding aside, I want to lead souls to Him, and not to hell.
You should say a Mass for those priests. If you give me the name of a Church I will send the donation.
Thank you Father Karl for the gift of your faithful vocation. It is very important for faithful Catholics to realize that it is not always that easy to find a Catholic priest who will immediately tend to someone who is very ill or perhaps even dying. Many take this gift for granted by thinking that they can wait until the very last minute to find a priest who will be readily willing and readily available to give them the sacraments in various circumstances. Your examples prove that this is not always the case.
The examples that you have given are sadly often common. On one occasion the Legion of Mary visited a nursing home and after our visit I telephoned the local parish which was a two minute drive away and asked if a priest could schedule some time to come and hear the confessions of 10 of the Catholic residents and the priest that I spoke with told me that old people in nursing homes did not commit sins any more. Again, I respectfully asked the priest if he could please visit this nursing home because these Catholics really wanted to see a Catholic priest and go to private confession and then he said, “Well, then why don’t you just have them confess their sins to you?” I then telephoned another parish and was told by another priest that the nursing home was not in his parish boundary and I asked the priest if our Lord ever showed territorial boundaries when someone contritely approached Him in asking for His forgiveness and mercy? We did eventually find a “Father Karl” who willingly went to hear their confessions. Father Karl, the faithful are so very appreciative of our good priests who truly do care about all souls and especially those who are the most vulnerable and in need of God’s mercy and close to death. Thank you for sharing those true examples that charitably help to remind each and every one of us, including myself, the importance of always being prepared to face Almighty God. Thank you again Father Karl for contributing on CCD. It has been a blessing for many readers to hear from our courageous and faithful priests. May God continue to bless you and all of our priests who lead souls to Him.
Amen, Catherine. Father Karl is a blessing to us on CCD.
With respect to the comment one absurdly selfish and misinformed priest made to you about older people no longer sinning, let me tell you about my stepmother.
The short version is that after she died in her 90’s, she was praised merely for her ageless beauty, for which, of course, the praise goes only to God, her faithful plastic surgeons, and the manufacturers of costly cosmetics, fine clothing, and fabulous jewels.
The woman made regular use of a confessor, whose time I do not believe was altogether wasted. However, I admit never having perceived in her countenance a crumb of contrition – but who am I to say?
There is, however, no doubt in my mind that the elderly are fully capable, to the very end, of sin of an astonishing variety, and that excellent priests like Father Karl are greatly needed by us all, no matter our ages.
I agree Maryanne, excellent priests like Father Karl are greatly needed. You can clearly see by some of the agitated comments how our good priests are consistently assailed. Those assailers are actually a great compliment and testimony to the faithfulness that is always shown by Christ’s loyal priests. My sister told me yesterday that she just heard a priest on a Catholic radio show say that when he was training new priests he always told them, “You will know if you are really doing your job well in teaching “all” of the Truths of our Catholic Faith when people start to snarl, grumble and complain.”
Also, thank you very much Maryanne for your excellent insight about our ability to commit sin no matter what our ages are. God bless you! : )
It’s odd how any priest or religious could advocate that old people do not sin considering the flood of Viagra type commercials clogging the media. I mean, if old folks were so chaste and directed toward God and their end in thought/word/deed, why would there be such a market for such products?
Granted, there are young people afflicted with the issues associated with these medications, but the target market is older people.
This wholesale discount of old anything – as if somehow the brain ceases to function/desire – is so naive. One would think that a priest who hears confessions would be well aware of why there is the saying, “Dirty old man.” But I guess these individuals will learn by experience when their sinfulness doesn’t – voila – disappear as the wrinkles and gray hair come on.
Father Karl, if only ALL Priest were cut from the same cloth and like you!
So many are just Judas Replicas ! Betray anything and anyone for 30 pieces of silver. In Heaven there will be no money or any value for siler.
Dear Canisius, have you ever read the Gospels? Have you ever actually come to know Our Lord Jesus Christ? I only ask this because your comments consistently reflect the values and actions of Pharisees rather than Jesus Christ. The Pharisees had lots of rage (like you) and a strong willingness to condemn others (just like you). I encourage you you to reflect on the teachings and actions of Jesus Christ, and then imitate the one who forbids you to judge others REPEATEDLY. Every blessing to you.
Are you trying to spread scandal, Fr. Karl?
Father Karl thank you for sharing and we want you to know that we appreciate you. I pray for more good priests like you in our lives. God bless you.
Your snide comments to Fr. Karl show that you know very little if anything about actual scandal. Father never gives names, just situations.
Your unknowing attitude is what has gotten us into this mess in the first place because people were afraid to bring to attention the scandalous talk and actions of some of their priests and bishops.
St. Francis de Sales could teach you a good deal about scandal, especially from priests and religious!
May God have mercy on an amoral Amerika!
Viva Cristo Rey!
God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
Kenneth M. Fisher
The actions of the priests Father Karl wrote about are the scandal. Exposing truth is never a scandal. Please beware and aware that hiding hideous truth is what led to the sex abuse scandal in the church
Dear Father Karl thank you for your honesty. I am scandalized and shocked. Do know, that there are many of us who treasure our holy (or their attempt to be holy) priests and are not impressed by worldly priests. Thank you again.
Again and again, we find ourselves asking, what does the pope really mean?
If by little monsters, he means progressive, subversive leftist sodomite child molesters and perverts, and “open” minded presiders who permit such things as tango masses and gay and lesbian masses, something the church already has way too much of, we wholeheartedly agree!
On the other hand, we certainly hope he is not referring to dedicated priests who faithfully and unselfishly serve God and His People and hold fast to sacred scripture and sacred tradition and cherish such traditional devotions as The Most Blessed Sacrament and The Most Holy Rosary of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
He was pretty clear what he meant: He doesn’t want priests whose ministerial goal is climbing the ecclesiastical ladder. And as he has said before, he doesn’t want priests to get too comfortable behind a desk or a pulpit: He wants them in the streets with the marginalized of society. Why is that so hard to comprehend? It has nothing to do with “sodomites” or “progressive subversive leftists”, or anything else. Why does everything have to be viewed through the filters of left-right politics, or gay-straight issues, or pre/post vatican II church dynamics? He wants priests to take the Gospel into the streets just like Jesus did.
Why does everything have to be viewed through the filters of left-right politics, or gay-straight issues, or pre/post vatican II church dynamics?… Because that is reality YFC… Gays have infiltrated the Church and now you expect those of us who oppose you just to ignore facts…..we are not going to….
Canisius knows the truth and is not about to put up with TEM and YFC who conscientiously scour CalCatholic articles and comments to protect the sodomites and others who are out to destroy the Church.
Dear Laurrette: If commenters here on CCD didn’t make EVERY post about homosexuality, I wouldn’t need to post so often to correct them. Not everything on earth is linked to homosexuality, contrary to the fears of you and Canisius and Catherine.
Only for those obsessed with the issue of homosexuality, Canisius. The Pope is continually asking us to let go of those obsessions.
YFC your hypocrisy is bothersome…go and get rid of your obsession, you know the one that is separating you from our Lord.
It is bothersome, Abeca, how some folks who are so obsessed with repeating the Pope’s supposed poo pooing of obsessions would completely dismiss the Pope’s admonition to go out and preach a Gospel which includes the rejection of all impurity.
Instead of preaching the Gospel, they choose to pervert St. Paul’s observation that, “…It is better to marry than to burn,” to push a homosexual agenda that goes quite opposite of the Gospel. The excuse being, not everyone is Catholic.
So which is it I wonder? Do these Catholics really follow Pope Francis? If so, surely they would preach the Gospel. Or do they believe that non-Catholics are too beneath them to receive the good news of the Gospel? Or incapable of living purely?
Its like this Ann….they speak of Jesus but do not know him, just like they quote the Pope but do not know the real intention the Pope is there to begin with.
People even use the bible to twist the truth as there are people who abuse Catholic websites to post things that try to discredit the faith and of those who fear the Lord.
You know the answer, because it’s exactly what you conveyed, they don’t really follow the Pope, nor Christ. They want so badly to be accepted in their current fleshly sins that they hear only through that deceptive nature. May God have mercy on us all and lets continue praying for the conversion of all sinners.
Ann thank you for conveying so beautifully. You speak so eloquently. I appreciate the gifts that the Lord blessed you with and I pray for you. Jesus is with His church till the end, we should stay and fight the good fight. Jesus is still there humble in the Mass, even when He is betrayed by His own priests or anyone within His church. So we should stay, learn and gain strength from His humility and trust in God alone.
Thanks for your prayers, Abeca. They are most appreciated and reciprocated :)
Ignore facts, Canisius, or create them in a scandalous way? Your focus seems distorted.
Yes Canisius, we HAVE to take sides. Everything MUST be about targeting hated or despised individuals. If we can’t do that, then we can’t use Catholic faith as an excuse to bully, harass, diminish, or abuse others. Why, if we didn’t have the excuse of defending the faith or protecting an omnipotent God then how could we be socially respectable while satisfying our need to be cruel to others?
YFC and Jon J., Whether in actions or words you are showing your support of sinful vice as an excuse to deliberately attack the Catholic Church. Your intended goal is to diminish and undermine the specific teachings on sexual morality that you refuse to obey. Pope Francis has not changed Church teaching and he is asking you to not remain obsessed with purveying and protecting evil vices on faithful Catholic websites especially after informing you that many have been wrongly catechized by “deformed little monsters. ”
”[The vice of sodomy] leads to error, totally removes truth from the deluded mind . . . It opens up Hell and closes the gates of Paradise.” –
St. Peter Damian
Catherine, you do realize that I’m not gay, right? I just think how the Church has historically treated gays (and, specifically, the legal positions it has supported in court) are inconsistent with its own doctrine about homosexuality.
For example, the Church has supported the legal position that gays should be excluded for having SSA from social organizations (which, if you read Dale, is the position the USCCB’s amicus brief takes). The Church also supports the idea that gay employees should be fired from their jobs. Extend this logic out, and you get the idea that it’s moral to prevent homosexuals from making a living, or obtaining housing, or participating in society.
I don’t expect the Church to support gay marriage, or stop preaching that homosexuality is a sin. In fact, I would have no problem with the Church disciplining USF for misrepresenting Church doctrine.
I remember the thread where I cut and pasted quotes about homosexuality and applied them to the sin of gluttony. Everyone here attacked me for being “unchristian, cruel, and not christ-like, ect” (which are the very things I have been saying). What’s disgusting is how no one has listened to their own commentary about their own words. You need to listen to yourselves.
JonJ then you do not know what the church really stands for. I now get you a little bit more….its not the church, its that you do no understand it. Pray for that virtue….nothing wrong to ask in the spirit of love and in humility. It is the first step towards growth in Christ.
I suggest praying daily the prayer of Humility. Also recommend the book An Introduction To The Devout Life By: St. Francis de Sales.
Folks, Pope Francis speaks Spanish. His words are not being accurately translated from “within” the Church and certaintly not by the secular world. Those of you who speak Spanish can check on this yourselves. Listen to him in one of his homlies–then read about it afterward. We all know that if you replace words with other words you can change the meaning. If you don’t understand Spanish, better to read his writings–that’s where you’ll get the REAL message of his talks…….in today’s world we are going to have to do our homework and not take things as fact at face value. Read Pope Francis’ exhortation “Evangelii Gaudium”, it’s all there without the tampering–I hope it’s not “news” to you that the Evil one roams around even at the Vatican and has his claws in many–but not this Pope!
Recently, Michael Voris on “The Vortex” brought up the issue of translation of the Pope’s comments, and he showed how good Spanish to English translators has completely challenged what the English translators (ICEL anyone?) had written that the Pope had said!
However; his appointments are not subject to translation!
May God have mercy on an amoral Amerika!
Viva Cristo Rey!
God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
Kenneth M. Fisher
I wouldn’t question what Pope Francis was talking about. I have encountered far too many of the “little monsters” in my life. TEM can define them all he wants, but evidently will never recognize one. Classifying priests into left and right doesn’t work. It’s whom they serve, not their left or right orientation. The night my wife died, our pastor administered the Sacrament of the sick at 8:30 pm and I was finally successful in getting him to go home for a little sleep at 3:45 am. He spent all that time supporting me in the most difficult time of my life, and he is definitely no kind of monster ! They’re out there. Please support them when you find them until it hurts and then support them some more !!!!
By “serving the poor” I hope he meant the unborn.
Who could be poorer than babies in the womb who have no one to protect them, not even their own mother?
I have know seminarians who were fine men, but once ordained became haughty and self-absorbed. I think this is probably what Pope Francis is referring to.
“Bob” and “Thomas Edward Miles”: Your views on the benefits of Pope Francis, it is feared, are completely incorrect. Certainly he makes statements that seem troubling, but then, you need to look at his Latin American background, and the fact that he is a Jesuit, to understand his meaning. No, homosexual sexual practitioners will not be welcomed into Francis’ Catholic Church, unless it is to go to confession and promise to avoid the awful sinfulness of their lives. The Pope very recently spoke out to Aethists and said that Christ loves them too, and asked them to rejoing the Church. However, Francis does not pretend to re-define sin. Oh, he is likely correct in directing clergy to better engage the people, because that is where salvation lies. Perhaps then, Francis will better understand that the People crave a return to Tradition, to meaning in their liturgies and in the living out of the Church’s catechism. Formation of priests has been a known scandal for decades — but this grave omission must be laid at the feet of prior popes and bishops. Read “Veterum Sapientia” and ask yourselves why, since John XXIII (who said only the TLM and spoke Latin fluently), popes have abandoned his direction that seminaries teach all seminarians Latin and, to a lesser extent, Greek. Instead, most seminaries resemble a trainer ground for social organizers and workers (all in the namb of being “pastoral” no doubt). The Church is committing suicide by divorcing itself from its Tradition (and, yes, the people will escape, leaving a remnant that feasts on a church which cares only about secular things, and not salvation; just look at the nutty Episcopalians and their Happy Dress-Up feminine leaders). Pray for Francis.
It would be a mistake to confuse tradition with Tradition. I hope you aren’t making that mistake, though it seems you are.
Wonderful post, St Christopher. Particularly your comment that, “…Perhaps then, Francis will better understand that the People crave a return to Tradition, to meaning in their liturgies and in the living out of the Church’s catechism.”
Doubling down on what the Church has always taught, albeit with an ever increasing charity, is in order.
Pray tell, so called “Your Fellow Catholic” give us your definition of Tradition vs. tradition if you can!
May God have mercy on an amoral Amerika!
Viva Cristo Rey!
God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
Kenneth M. Fisher
I would also hope that seminaries refrain from churning out little leftist/socialist monsters who are ignorant of the principle of subsidiarity and keep jumping on the bandwagon of every government-pushed “solution”.
I would join you while adding that I hope that seminaries refrain from churning out little rightist/fascist monsters who are ignorant of the principle of subsidiarity and keep jumping on the bandwagon of every Republican-pushed “solution.”
Care to cite some examples of that happening? I have no idea what you’re talking about.
Point well made by Pope Francis.
These words by Pope Francis gave me a déjà vu experience. 40 years ago Fr. Aloysius Ellacuria, CMF wrote that “the present crisis in the Church is a result of lack of spiritual formation in the seminaries, and because of this, priests today are not what they should be.” Furthermore he wrote, “This crisis is going to be much worse, because in the present day the seminaries, instead of being improved are completely deteriorated. The ones in charge of priestly formation, sad to say but it is a fact, are instruments of deformation of the future priests.” This was a shocker in 1971. Fr. Aloysius continued, “the priest, by virtue of his vocation… is called to the highest dignity on earth, and therefore the highest sanctity… In most of the seminaries they have a disastrous misinterpretation of Vatican II. I state this with all my conviction, after spending twenty-five years or more in the spiritual formation of seminarians.” There may not be a more enlightened and experienced practical judgement on formation issues. Now Fr. Aloysius’ observations are unabashedly corroborated after 40 years by Pope Francis! In his brief comments Pope Francis vindicates an insight rarely discussed in seminary formation circles. Thank you, Pope Francis!
I wish Pope Francis would stop talking and govern the Church properly. Our Lord Jesus didn’t get up close to cameras, give interviews and make such friends in the world. The Media’s preoccupation with this Pontificate should frighten any Catholic who loves the Truth. What did Our Lord say about the World?
Wow…what gall! Instructing his holiness in this fashion. I bet you THINK you’re a Catholic too, huh?
Gabe- I think he’s speaking about carerrists of any stripe who have loyalty to their clime up the ladder before loyalty to the people of God or to God Himself.
Obviously Jesus didn’t “get close to cameras”, but he made himself pretty well known. If he had had to depend on his pre-Pentacostal disciples to do the work, things would likely have not gone well.
It was nice of CCD to sanitize this article. If you read the original news release you will the following statements: “priests who are taught only to toe the line will become “little monsters”” “seminaries and “houses of formation” need to keep up with the cultural times” “Problems are not solved simply by forbidding doing this or that”
I have read the “original text” in La Civilta Cattolica—it is actually a redaction of notes, the speech having originally been given in Italian—and as usual, PF’s intent is hard to understand: the focus, although generally on religious life and formation, jumps around a lot. I think are chains are being yanked, however, by the secular press on the “little monsters” line. This is the context in which PF was speaking specifically of formation of religious, and the issue of “lack of maturity and Christian freedom”: “If the seminary is too large, it ought to be divided into smaller communities with formators who are equipped really to accompany those in their charge. Dialog must be serious, without fear, sincere. It is important to recall that the language of young people in formation today is different from that in the past: we are living through an epochal change. Formation is a work of art, not a police action. We must form their hearts. Otherwise we are creating little monsters. And then these little monsters mold the People of God.” This is not a quote about evil trad Catholics or wild lefty ones. In the next paragraph he is a bit clearer: “In the end, we must not form administrators, managers, but fathers, brothers, traveling companions.” (La Civilta Cattolica, 2014: I, 3-17)
I think Pope Francis might agree, that what one writes or says publically, is one thing– but the actions of one’s life, are another! Sadly, all of our Vatican II popes have written and said some wonderful things that sound true to Christ– yet, in real life, they repeatedly refuse to take action to carry out Church teaching! Especially in regard to maintaining a properly functioning Church, including her millions of churches, seminaries, schools, universities, hospitals, and charities, worldwide, as well as properly governing all clergy and nuns, and religious orders. Without proper governance, everything is falling to pieces, as one would expect– with absolutely no hope of a good, reliable, trustworthy future! “The Death of a Church??” Is that what our Church leaders are really, in their hearts, actually carrying out?? Our Church, like the final days of the oman Empire– lies in RUINS!! There are no appropriate political terms that can be applied to sincerely and faithfully living by Christ’s teachings. Worldy terms such as “liberal” or “conservative,” are worldly and secular concepts. But to follow Chirst sincerely, rejecting the tragically “fallen,” immature secular world– requires faithfulness and maturity! In the era before Vatican II, for many centuries, the difference between the sacred and secular realms, was well-understood!
Have faith, no matter how bad things seem to be, and they seem to be terrible. Our Lord through His Mother will crush the head of the serpent!
May God have mercy on an amoral Amerika!
Viva Cristo Rey!
God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
Kenneth M. Fisher
The ‘truthiness’ of our Bought and Paid for ‘free press’ is beyond question, at least for those who fear their ‘tolerant’ retaliation:
“Vatican: Media Uses ‘Manipulation’ of Pope’s Statements to Fit Agenda
(CNSNews.com) – The Vatican press office released a statement three days ago calling the media’s coverage of Pope Francis’ remarks about children living with same-sex parents “manipulation” and “quite obviously forced,”
adding that the pope’s positions were “completely different from what some people are now trying to surreptitiously attribute to him.”
“The situation in which we live now provides us with new challenges which are sometimes difficult for us to understand,” said the pope. “How can we proclaim Christ to these boys and girls? How can we proclaim Christ to a generation that is changing? We must be careful not to administer a vaccine against faith to them.”
Pope Francis’ remarks occurred during a Q & A format with the religious men about the challenges of belonging to a religious order, the challenges facing the church in general, and education….
These media outlets failed to report Pope Francis’ recent opposition to same-sex unions in Malta and his instruction to the archbishop there he was “saddened” by news that Malta was considering allowing gay couples to adopt, calling it “anthropological regression,” a phrase he had also used when he was bishop of Buenos Aires…
– See more at: https://cnsnews.com/news/article/barbara-boland/vatican-media-uses-manipulation-pope-s-statements-fit-agenda
Yes, Linda: “Our Church, like the final days of the Ottoman Empire– lies in ruins!! ” I have thought the same, especially when I saw the classic film, “Pascali’s Island”, about an Ottoman empire operative/spy, Pascali (Ben Kingsley), who sends elaborate and devotedly honorific secret report after secret report off to the Sultan, warning of a suspicious threat—and getting no response at all, wondering if there is any one reading his missives at all. Yes, the analogy is bitterly striking.
Of course, even the best and holiest priests deal daily with “little monsters” in the pews.
Our pastor got roundly scolded by some angry old woman merely for preaching about his work with Project Gabriel — she didn’t want to hear ANY reference to abortion from a male.
Our assistant pastor was attacked for mentioning during a funeral who should and should not come up to Holy Communion because some people thought his gentle comments were “unwelcoming.”
Linda’s and Steve Phonix’s comments are ludicrous. They show a sad lack of faith. “A Church that lies in ruins”?? Are you even serious?!
Have you not read Jesus’ words that “Upon this rock I shall build my Church and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it”? The Catholic Church, if I may remind you Linda and SPhoenix, is the oldest, continuously running institution in the world. The World! She has survived bad popes, bishops, priests, and lay people. Yes, Bad Lay People! How?
Because in spite of having less-then-perfect members, the Church is GUARDED by God Himself. God does not neglect His Bride.
Your negative comments about bishops, priests, and even popes are what is most scandalous, hurtful, and damaging to the faith of those who read your words.
I’m not sure if “lies in ruins” is really an accurate description, but there are a lot of us Catholics that feel like the Church is. There is so much dissent in the Church . So many clergy and religious that teach and have opinions contrary to Church teachings. Most Catholics support abortion and so called “gay marriage”. Most Catholics don’t believe in the Real Presence. Most Catholics voted for the most evil president we have ever had. Most Bishops in USCCB voted for Obama and spend most of their time thinking about social justice and immigration reform. Most young people aren’t properly catechized and leave the church by the time they graduate college. Most Catholics never see the inside of the church outside of Easter and Christmas.
Matthew 13:33. Another parable he spoke to them: The kingdom of
heaven is like to leaven, which a woman took and hid in
three measures of meal, until the whole was leavened.
But Jon, the Church, as the Spouse of Jesus Christ, must follow His path, that of ‘seemingly falling to ruins, betrayed by dearest friends and those who should know better.’ Those who DO know better. And She has been, hasn’t She?
Being blind to the ‘ruin’ (the crucifixion) doesn’t help matters. But it is no cause for ultimate despair either as the desolation is what makes the promised Triumph so sweet and so recognizable as the hand of God. That said, Christ was crucified, but never abandoned by God… although it surely looked like it at the time.
But there is no killing Truth. Not Christ and not His Bride. Even so, I think we should be allowed some measure of human sorrow at seeing Our Lord’s bride, Our Mother, pierced and abused. Not that we don’t believe in God, but personally, I’d have been weeping at the foot of the Cross if I’d been there. Faith and all.
I can think of no bigger monster than all the sodomite priests who sexually abused boys.
What about the evil priests who abused girls?
Do you think THEY are less bad?
Are girls and women worth less in your brain?
Susan what a stupid question! Of course it is evil to abuse girls too….geese, you didn’t come of so intelligent with your sneaky comment….so let us get back at you…So does your comment mean that you do no think that sodomite priests who abused boys is evil?
I would hope that you would agree also with Juergensen….but your comment came of defensive and makes us wonder about you…
90% of the victims sexually abused by priests were boys, and since 100% of the priests are male, that makes the problem one of SODOMITES in the priesthood.
Your red herring about the few female victims isn’t going to change the underlying problem: SODOMITES in the priesthood.
Your statistics are quite off, as are your conclusions.
Canticle Daniel 3:57-88, 56
Let all creatures praise the Lord
Praise God, seek His ways. Ask for them and surrender your being to Him. Ask daily “Lord let me hear thy voice, for thy voice gives me strength”. If we were to hear His voice, we would most likely fall to the floor in shock and in fear due to our sins. But it will take His word to heal us and give us strength, it will empower us and it will humble us.
Do we wake up in the morning and begin our day in prayer. Do we ask our Lord to help us to listen more attentively? While doing so, we must always practice our good listening skills or at least work on them. With every stage of our growing life, we begin a new chapter of our lives, each one, hopefully helps us grow more virtuous.
Keep our priests in daily prayers. They need our love and protection as well. When they are walking a holy life, seeking to please Jesus and serving others, they will be persecuted, there is no doubt about it. We must defend them and treat them with love, just like the little children that they are when they are serving God in humility.
“It was in this spirit that the Blessed Virgin confessed that God had done “great things” to her; (2) only that she might humble herself and exalt Him. “My soul doth magnify the Lord,” she said, by reason of the gifts He had given her.
We are very apt to speak of ourselves as nought, as weakness itself, as the offscouring of the earth; but we should be very much vexed to be taken at our word and generally considered what we call ourselves. On the contrary, we often make-believe to run away and hide ourselves, merely to be followed and sought out; we pretend to take the lowest place, with the full intention of being honourably called to come up higher.
But true humility does not affect to be humble, and is not given to make a display in lowly words. It seeks not only to conceal other virtues, but above all it seeks and desires to conceal itself; and if it were lawful to tell lies, or feign or give scandal, humility would perhaps sometimes affect a cloak of pride in order to hide itself utterly. ”
~~~INTRODUCTION TO A DEVOUT LIFE by St Francis de Sales, Doctor of the Church
God can do great things in us, if we permit Him and do not interfere with our own man made ideologies. So much falsehood out there, it a constant prayer of mine, asking God to protect us, that we not fall trap to those falsehoods and to flee from them.
Heavy are my sins. So heavy that I hate them. I do admit, I have many “not so proud moments” due to my flaws and sins. I’m grateful that God loves us, that He overlooks our flaws and see’s right through our heart. I pray that many will give their hearts to Jesus. As imperfect as we are, we are still responsible to persevere in truth even when our flaws slow us down.
Jon (who says to Linda & me: “Your negative comments about bishops, priests, and even popes are what is most scandalous, hurtful, and damaging to the faith of those who read your words.”), I am sure has read St John Chrysostom’s, St Athanasius’, and especially, St Peter Damien’s (“the Angel of the Apocalpyse”) many sermons, many of which address matter which are strikingly similar to the corrupt circumstances of today, if you want to decry “negative comments about bishops, priests and popes” — those who saw the mistakes, or crimes, and called them what they were. How about this, Jon: “WE HAVE HAD ENOUGH EXHORTATIONS TO BE SILENT! CRY OUT WITH A HUNDRED THOUSAND TONGUES: I SEE THE WORLD IS ROTTEN BECAUSE OF SILENCE.” – St Catherine of Siena (d. 1380) Now, THERE is a negative thinker you can sink your teeth into. I will take my guidance from them, Jon, not you, thank you.
She was writing to a prelate-telling him to cry out. Not telling lay people to cry out against the clergy. The Lord told her not to do that.
I see, I see, Anonymous: “Pray, Pay and Obey, Part 2”: So, St Catherine’s principle (“The world is rotten because of silence..”) is not to be applied generally, and only to non-clergy (Uhh. She was not a member of the clergy either). So when Benedict XVI in Sept 2012 called on the laity “to be co-responsible” for the being and activity of the Church, they were to do this yet remain accomodatingly silent? I see. And do you think that the US Bishops would have been more swiftly moved to finally address in these last decades the many issues of failure and corruption by a “silent people”? Would that suit God our Lord better? I challenge the claim also that “St Catherine..was not telling lay people to cry out”. Please cite for me the letter you are referencing: Even so, there are over 300 surviving letters of St Catherine, written to many people in all parts of Catholic society, urging them to action to reform the Church. She publicly lobbied for the formation of a new Crusade. She advocated publicly in many letters for the reform of the clergy and the laity, including of course, the Pope, Gregory XI. She travelled in the last 3 years of her life preaching and urging people to maintain peace between the city-states of Italy. Is this a life of a lay person that exemplies “keeping silent” and that only the clergy should speak? Hmmm. I know there are Catholics today who think we should not discuss, not analyse, not evaluate, and not speak, even if we present a basis for argument. They are welcome to keep silent and “practice what they preach”. As for me and Linda and others, if the Church is in ruins, and it is, I will not keep silent about it, and I will do something to alert others to what needs to be done, thank you.
Steve Phoenix, thank you for your use of logic in your dialogue with Anonymous, re: St. Catherine. If your Anonymous is the same shadow rider I’ve been dealing with, he/she believes that it is God Himself telling him/her what is what – locution style. So your reasoning will likely fall on ears that have been cut off.
This Anonymous also seems to misconstrue speaking out against the hypocritical non-practice of the actual Faith of some of our clergy with disparaging the individual and/or their office. He/she doesn’t seem to understand that speaking out against the hypocrisy and misuse is in reality the greatest support anyone could give to the person and the office.
As in, “Do your duty man and recall the dignity to which you’ve been raised.” Not looking the other way while so as to encourage continued misuse and scandal.
You are very kind, Ann M, in your comments: it so happens I have been reading, and would like to recommend a classic biography of St Catherine, “The Greatest Catherine”, by Michael de La Bedoyere
(orig. published in 1947, but you can find it on Amazon for as little as $3 or $4, used (plus shipping): There are many other “scholarly” works on St Catherine which also highly document this amazing saint, so highly relevant for our time, but this is a well-documented source-true account of the true “Catherine the Great.” The notion that she was recommending the “laity” to be silent and “only the clergy to speak” is appalling to me. This Catholic lady was absolutely shocking in her life of prayer, self-denial and mortification—yet she endlessly spoke out on the truth and saved our Church at that time in history. And she advocated others to do that too. Endlessly, til her abbreviated life was over at age 33. No doubt, the Anonymous of the world will claim, “You are no St Catherine.” No, but one can learn to live by her example of knowing right from wrong—when even the Pope and all his cardinalate didnt have a clue as to God’s will; or the “diabolical disorientation” Sr Lucy, 1959 interview) will continue on.
Thank you for the book recommendation, Steve Phoenix. I will endeavor to obtain a copy and learn from it, not just read it. Thanks again for your consistent defense of the Faith and Our Mother, the Church.
The struggle between good and evil is larger than just in the Catholic Church, and larger than just in the West. The dying weapons designer, Mikhail Kalashnikov ( d. Dec, 2013) “also pressed the spiritual leader about the state of religion in Russia, where the Russian Orthodox Church has grown more powerful since the fall of communism.”
“Yes, the number of churches and monasteries grow in our country, but the evil does not decrease!” he wrote. “The good and the bad live as neighbors, fight and, what is the most terrific, submit to one another in people’s souls — that is what I discovered in the dawn of my earthly life. It is similar to the eternal engine which I wanted to invent in my early years. Light and shadow, good and evil are the opposites of the whole thing and they can’t live without each other? Is it possible that the Lord set this order?” Kalashnikov wrote.” (Foxnews. com, Jan 14, 2014)
well that was his opinion ” Is it possible that the Lord set this order?” . I wouldn’t speak on behave of our Lord like that. But in case anything hadn’t noticed, we are all sinners. But where there is a stronger presence of real Catholicism, there seems to be more common sense and reasoning better. We have noticed that where there are more lukewarm Catholics that it prospers well in liberalism and socialism. I wonder why is that? Maybe I could be wrong too.
Someone(protestant) once made a good point, that even pastors who raise their children in biblical values, they too have noticed that in a few families of pastors, there are those “bad seeds”. You’ll have a prodigal son or daughter but sometimes some never return. As we can tell even within the walls of our church, our faith, we have those that struggle with deeply rooted sins. But when the majority are good Catholic Christians, there is a higher percentage to help a lost soul. Its when there is a majority of Catholics and there is wickedness growing. that it can get bigger when Catholics do nothing or not enough. We need to be united not divided but as we can see, there is much division and the “monster” leadership that failed to be holy (Be obedient to Christ) have produced their fruit of confusion.
Who says sin isn’t complicated….we are complicated people when we turn away from God, especially more when the truth is presented to us over and over and when one still rejects those truths, then that is worst.