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Thursday, 18 September 2014

2 Weeks of Blogging Despair: Embarrasment from the Radical Catholic Reactionaries over ++Burke and ++Dolan

Hello Everyone,

I realize that this is a lengthy post. Bear with me though. It needs the length as this is 2 weeks worth of observation and reflection.  

These past two weeks have been a sad and woeful one on the Catholic blog-o-sphere. This has been one of the worst periods of recent, where it feels like there is no hope living as a Catholic. The players who are directly responsible for carrying out the sin of despair are powerful men in esteemed positions of authority, who are not speaking with the Mind of the Church, despite the responsibility given to them by our Lord. Are you thinking what I am thinking, or whom I am directly referring to?

Perhaps I should explain further, by discussing what I have been witnessing on the Catholic blog-o-sphere. The situations that have been of critical (as well as hateful) discussion these past two weeks, are in regards to two cardinals, on opposite sides of the theo-political spectrum. They are Cardinal Timothy Dolan of the Archdiocese of New York, who’s what we could call “pastoral”, while at the other end, the “spiritual” end, is Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke, possibly soon to be ex-prefect of the Apostolic Signatura in Rome.

Summary of the Major Events

Dolan’s criticism, and fury amongst the Traditionalists Behaving Badly (my term by the way that I created, like Dave Armstrong with Radical Catholic Reactionary, to purposely ostracize the Traditionalists who are disobedient and hateful to and within Holy Mother Church, from the good, loyal traditionalists who don't do what they do,) deal with the fact the jolly Cardinal is MC for the upcoming St. Patrick’s parade in New York in 2015. The parade is now letting in pro-gay groups. Dolan's acceptance of the "honour" is being seen as an OK for being gay in the Church. Further, the TBBs are likely thinking of him as the Devil’s minion, for wanting to close down Holy Innocents Catholic Church in NYC, the U.S.A base of operations for valiant Glad Trad hero, Fr. John Zuhlsdorf of WDTPRS. The critics are also implying that the only reason Dolan extended the possible merger/closing of H.I is because too much bad press got out about him, despite his response, so he's saving face for himself and the office of the Archdiocese of New York.

At the other end of things, Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke is likely being re-assigned to another office of the Church, a superior of sorts of the Knights of Malta, based in Rome. This move by Pope Francis is being seen by the TBBs as a “demotion” and part of a conspiracy theory of Pope Francis’ and company’s hate for anything dealing with that trad hero, Benedict XVI. They are also attributing this demotion to the fact that ++Burke and other traditional bishops and Jesuits wrote a book defending the traditional teachings of the Church on marriage and the family, in contradiction to the violation of Church teaching in the “tolerated but not acceptable” position of ++Kasper on non-annulled Catholics receiving communion. In addition, ++Kasper is getting a “ringmaster’s stage” for the upcoming Extraordinary Synod of the Family. The worst of the rumour mill at Rorate Caeli, even says that Francis was royally pissed off at this book, and even scolded ++Muller of the Congregation for Doctrine of the Faith not to promote the book … if you believe the worst PR site for radical traditionalism who’s one step away from sedevacantism that is. 

So, what am I getting at?

With the summary of the main events, it seems as if our appointed leaders in the Catholic world are failing us. The disgusting liberal clergy who are wolves in sheep’s clothing are heroes, the good Cardinals are being destroyed by the Spirit of Vatican II clergy including our Pope of Mercy, and St. Anna Catharine of Emerich’s prophecy is coming true right? Well the leadership of the Church certainly has failed …. But surprise! It’s not entirely the clergy. 

I am talking about those of us laity charged with the full participation of Christ’s priesthood, prophecy, and kingship.

The laity who are being leaders, fighting what they think is their quest to maintain the Church’s order and governance, have done the greatest disservice these past two weeks for the Church. THEY DO NOT, IN ANY WAY, SHAPE, OR FORM, HAVE VESTED AUTHORITY TO DICTATE OR ENFORCE THE CHURCH’s LAWS OR TEACHINGS. If they say they do, they are liars and only have the privileges every ordinary Catholic has, albeit at the service and mercy to the clergy and Canon Law (including choice to wield said law.) Many of them, are laypeople, with nothing more than an acumen to see black wherever there is white, and no good of the Church. 

Now, by no means am I wearing rose coloured glasses and saying "all is well", but they have crossed a line between critical evaluation and fraternal correction, into the Devil’s camp using his weapons of slander, calumny, and detraction. They have also aided in committing the sin of despair, sister to the deadly Sloth.

Despair

If anything, the bloggers have allowed for the fruition of the sin of despair amongst what they say. What is the sin of despair? The Sin of Despair is, as per Catholic Catechism of the Catholic Church 2091, ".... By despair, man ceases to hope for his personal salvation from God, for help in attaining it or for the forgiveness of his sins. Despair is contrary to God's goodness, to his justice - for the Lord is faithful to his promises - and to his mercy."

What the bloggers have been reporting constantly, with hatred/anger, pride (also deadly sins, evidenced in their writing), actually detracts from Holy Mother Church’s mission of evangelizing and the salvation of souls. People want to be saved or seek internally salvation, or being “happy.” Every person’s reason for existence, a la Baltimore Catechism #1 is to know, love, and serve God all their lives. The Church is that spiritual and physical means by which in His Eternal Sacrifice on the Cross, Christ gave us, so that we could be with Him in Heaven. All that these bloggers have done is contravened the Holy Father’s “mission of mercy” and have shown that the Church is another institution with corrupt people in it via their coverage. To show that there is nothing but corruption in the Church and no means of salvation via their blogging coverage is exactly causing despair, a loss of any hope in the Church because of the institutional problems (and false boogeymen) within it. 
  
Let's continue. As traditional Catholics, one would know a number of lists that is nearly forgotten and not taught by current “Catholic” teachers and clergy. One of these lists is The Nine Ways of Being An Accessory to Another's Sin. Allow me to refresh your memory with the list:
  1. By Counsel
  2. By Command
  3. By Consent
  4. By Provocation
  5. By Praise or Flattery
  6. By Concealment
  7. By Partaking
  8. By Silence
  9. By Defense of the ill done


This list, by the way, is in the little red missal books you Latin Mass attendees see at most chapels, churches, and lay-organized Masses. 

If you notice, some of the ways of assisting in committing sin are blatantly being committed by these members on the Net, which I`ve highlighted:

Partaking: Between the quantity and slanderous and calumnous nature of the postings, this is clear provocation of sin, division, and the like amongst members of the Church. This is even more so when these attacks directly concern the Holy Father. Might I also remind you that the Holy Father himself equated gossip and calumny as the devil's works? Those "works" would obviously be sins of grave Matter. The devil's works are no laughing matter. They are always serious business. 

Provocation: The provocation of what they have done is on numerous levels: 1) Vs. the clergy and establishment in place, to anger them, and drive those targets to sin further themselves, 2) Amongst their fellow Traditionalists, by once again embarrassing them and can prompt further persecution. 3) Others, that is, it provokes others to experience the sin of despair. 

Defense of the Ill Done: And how do they justify their actions? They continue to say they will not stop in attacking the Holy Father, will not stop attacking others, and will not stop harming the faithful spiritually. Their defense of their sins committed is that it's all for the Good of the Holy Church, when it's pure bullying, harassment, and hatred dressed up as religion. 

Whether it is in disparaging the Jesuits, the Holy, Father, or Cardinals, this is blatant Pharisee-ism at its worst. In doing the disservice, those leaders on the Catholic blogosphere are leaving us with only one question: Why would anyone in their right mind want to be part of the Church when it is no different from its secular counterparts of schools, government, workplaces, etc.?

Furthermore, people like myself, who actually care about Traditional Catholicism, can only leave shaking our heads in disgust. We want to have a vibrant and happy life with traditional Catholicism as part of the beautiful fabric of worship and liturgical rites in the Church, not the sole be all and end all that is enforced upon everyone! When these leaders embarrass us, misrepresent ALL CATHOLICS, say cruel barbs at our priests and clergy, and fellow Glad Trads and Catholics alike, either we desire to depart from our sinful siblings by having nothing to do with the Latin Mass, or worse, we put our heads in the sand and sin by omission when those significant few do their dastardly deeds, because we fear the “big bad bishops” will take away our Mass in violation of Church Law. Better to continue going to the Latin Mass every Sunday and not say anything right? Both approaches do nothing to increase participation and/or respect for the Latin Mass and Traditional Catholicism. Yet it's all because of a few spiritually misguided souls who just haven't found the proper means to say, "Hey! The Church is awesome! Even though our leaders do sin, there is STILL Spiritual salvation here!" 

I, myself, became quite disparaged about the Church this week, thanks to my sad “brothers and sisters” of Christ. It affected my disposition with my relationships and made me question if there is anything positive in the Church when we are all mucking it up, bloggers included. Thankfully, Christ in Matthew 16:18 promised us Hell would not prevail!

My Appeal

To those specific bloggers, you are making Traditional Catholicism a hateful place to be, and all your Catholic brothers and sisters and clergy will want none of it! Even your closer friends and clergy, can only stand so much, and will be forced in their fidelity to the Lord, to part ways for their souls. Do you care about the actions and influence that you wield on your fellow Catholics? You do want more people to discover the Latin Mass and become traditional Catholics right? Have you heard the expression, “you attract more flies with honey than vinegar?” 

Listen, I get that we have collectively “became awake” to politics and how we were not taught the truths of the faith in light of the institutional, NOT "TRUE", Church’s adoption of the “Spirit of Vatican II” a.k.a. pastoring gone wrong as extreme liberalism, misinterpreting the Vatican II documents. I also understand that some of you are war survivors, carrying around battle wounds that have never been fully healed deep within. There is scar tissue, but it's only a patch that easily opens with the slightest provocation. 

But does bearing your scars mean we are to wage war against the Church and smear every clergy member and layperson who does not practice the doctrine and laws perfectly, even at the cost of your eternal salvation when you go too far, too deep in your conquest? 

I can only end with saying this in necessity. While you have used this in past against me in anger and hatred, or others just like me on the blog-o-sphere not in your "camp," I must appeal to you in earnest. Please, for your spiritual health and others, seek the help of those who can assist you and give you spiritual mercy. What good has airing our all this on the Internet done for your spiritual health? Do you feel any better after? Has the institutional Church around you, or in a large scale, "changed" in any way from your actions? Please refrain from causing sin and grave spiritual harm to yourselves, and those others you associate with. Find a proper, Biblical, and truly, Theological way to love your brother with True fraternal, Catholic charity, according to the virtues (theological, cardinal, others) without resorting to the Devil’s trickery.

If you do not have counselling, please do seek a good and noble priest (preferably), or other orthodox Catholic who can help you with your issues. I do not mean simply a “yes man” who agrees 100% with your ideas and thoughts. I mean someone who can honestly acknowledge your concerns, your hurts, your pains, and assist you in fully seeking and obtaining Christ’s Love and mercy. This might even challenge you, or contradict your thoughts now, but that person will do so in order you to come to a deeper relationship with Christ, and lead a more true, Catholic life. 

Final Words

If anything, it shows that Pope Francis’ mission of mercy is more pertinent than ever, as even Christ’s “best soldiers” of the Church Militant, are badly wounded and their armor in need of major black-smithing to repair the damage.

Finally, allow me to end off with a pertinent link from "Neo-Trad" (a.k.a. Orthodox Good Guy) Mark Shea who succinctly shares to a degree my feelings and concerns, in an excellent interview about the changing face of Catholic Internet blogging:


Everyone, I know that things are rocky right now, but we have to do better than this. As Fr. Z says, Benedict XVI gave us the tools we need. It’s time to get the training wheels off the bicycle and ride with it!

Pax Tibi Christi, Julian Barkin.

P.S. I haven't forgotten about SINE, or my Latin Mass Serving Posts. Give me a break here as I got a significant lady in my life, a Mon-Fri job, and 3-7 other things on the go I gotta worry about, plus being stressed out at the end of the day needing to unwind. You try it and let me know if you do better. I'd like to know your strategies. 


Friday, 5 September 2014

UPDATED Sept 6 2014: Still Hope for Monsignor Charles Pope? His Blog isn't Dead Yet

Hello Everyone. Guess what? Despite the cries and initial reports from other TBB and conservative bloggers, MONSIGNOR's BLOG HAS NOT BEEN SACKED!!! It is also still accessible from the Archdiocesan webpage, albeit it's at the bottom of the page and not in plain, visible sight. See here:


MSGR's BLOG CAN STILL BE FOUND HERE: http://blog.adw.org/Yesterday, there is a posting though from Monsignor where he addresses us all about why the post was taken down. From a layman's standpoint, I think that this is the most charitable and reasonable approach of Monsignor going onward. The Archdiocese didn't sack his blog, he still writes (albeit I think he might have received minimum a word of warning to written discipline in his personal file in the office) and we the laity still get his nourishing words.

So folks, needless to say some of the blogs were wrong on this one. I told you it was good to wait it out and see what would happen.

Pax, Julian.

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Still Hope for Monsignor Charles Pope? His Blog isn't Dead Yet

Hello Everyone,

While this isn't 100% pertinent to Latin Mass or Archdiocese of Toronto related issues, something darkens the Catholic blogosphere, and the Trads Behaving Badly (TBB) who want to hate upon anything in the Spirit of Vatican II. They, of course, won't let this issue past.

Monsignor Charles Pope is part of the Archdiocese of Washington, in the Unites States. He was blogging as part of the Archdiocesan website, and had been a good, solid, Orthodox catholic blogger. [EDIT: HE DOES] do the Latin Mass, & you could say he`s got a Traditional mindset that is NOT TBB. I`ve also used some of his posts for reference for my altar serving posts.

However, yesterday, he wrote an article about St. Patrick`s Day in shock and to counter how ++Dolan is being the parade's main sponsor or MC. There's also mention about some ``Al Smith`` dinner (no relation to our beloved Canadian Gasman!). Apparently, the dinner was some sort of ``neutral`` gathering of politicians, but apparently, it is now a farce for pro-abort politicians and haters of the family and heterosexual relationships to gather.

Long story short from Monsignor: Pray and do penance for the outrages and reparations of the sins being represented in the parade, and for the false princes of our world. This article is floating around the web despite it's takedown, however I am NOT going to link to certain Canadian sites here on S.U.D. because I`m refusing to give web hits to TBBs. Instead feel free to see the removed article on Southern Orders'  Blog of Fr. Allan J. McDonald here.

Shortly after Monsignor wrote his article, supposedly (because I have not been able to see the before and after) it was taken down and Msgr`s blog was removed from the Archdiocese of Washington`s site.

What do I have to say? Right now, TBBs and the right-wing Catholic bloggers are going nuts with this, also tailing on Cardinal Dolan being the St. Patrick's Day parade's MC or main host. Fr. AJM also has a post on that too. But furthermore ... I am posting here to say this ..

MONSIGNOR'S BLOG, For now, STILL EXISTS! Further, there is no report on any disciplinary actions yet ..... MSGR's BLOG CAN BE FOUND HERE: http://blog.adw.org/

However, in the worst case scenario it does get taken down ... I'd get screen captures or copy the text of some of your favourite articles.

So right, now, don't believe in all of the negative coverage here as the blog is still up, and don't go planning calumny, detraction, or slander assaults on the Archdiocese, their staff, or ++Dolan if you just cannot refuse to attack a bishop. Stay tuned to see if the Archdiocese does anything. If it does kill the blog .... well that's your call what to do. But seriously, keep your anger intact and your powder kegs dry, and please follow Msgr's advice, but also pray for ++Dolan that he changes his mind and for a strengthening of his leadership, and for Pope Francis to continue in action and prayer, fighting against such sin and leadership.

Pax, Julian.

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Fall 2014 Special Offerings for Latin Masses and/or Solemnities (Sept-Dec 2014)

Hello Everyone.

Here is the current listing of non-regularly scheduled Latin Masses to occur in the Archdiocese of Toronto that are known to me via friends and/or social media. This is for September to December 2014.

SEPTEMBER 2014

There are no known offerings at this time. Please check back consistently for updates. 

OCTOBER 2014

Tuesday, October  7 - Feast of our Lady of the Rosary & Commemoration of the Battle of Lepanto

Toronto Traditional Mass Society

Sunday, October 26, 2014 - Feast of Christ the King

St. Patrick's Gregorian Choir (Anticipated, NOT confirmed, as this is the Choir's 8th anniversary of their formation, and they do this Mass annually)

  • When: Sunday, October 26th, 2014
  • Location? To be determined, but SPGC tends to use St. Lawrence the Martyr, Scarborough for Masses. 
  • Start time? Likely 3pm, 315pm, or 330pm. 
  • Organizer: St. Patrick's Gregorian Choir under Surinder S. Mundra
  • Primary Contact/Inquiries: 416 731 4485.  
  • Parish Websites: To be determined once location is confirmed.
  • Facebook event page:  Coming soon
     November 2014

    There are no scheduled Masses at this time. However, TTMS traditionally does All Saints and/or All Souls Masses, and the Oratorians might add another scheduled Mass on these days to their normal schedule. Please stay tuned for more information.

    December 2014

    There are no scheduled Masses at this time. Please check back for more information. 

    Created: August 23, 2014

    Change of Heart for Me for Latin Mass Attendance

    Hello Everyone,

    For those who have been consistently reading my blog, a number of months ago, I made a post "Au Revoir" whereby after a length of time I initially decided tune out of the Latin Mass because of the nefarious actions of the Trads Behaving Badly and their adherents.

    The stronger adherents, who think their masters are the authorities on the Latin Mass, act as their spies in misguided loyalty to them and report back on anyone and anything in the Archdiocese that might be of interest to their masters, or when other Latin Mass people do things against their Radical Catholic Reactionary code.

    Because of what these adherents do, and that I would see some of those adherents at my closest TLM parishses of St. Vincent De Paul and Holy Family, my resolve included not going to Latin Masses unless with family and friends, or serving only those Masses alongside what I consider groups and parishes not poisoned by these TBBs, such as St. Lawrence the Martyr (where they only "visit" and occasionally hold a Mass, with the clergy being tolerable and not biased towards one side or another), and the St .Patrick's Gregorian Choir (100% TBB free!)

    However, in reflection, I have decided that despite what they do, why should they limit where I can go in my attendance to the Latin Mass? If they are there, as long as they keep to themselves, and if they interact with me civilly and do not act on whatever grievances they have against me or loyalties to their lay masters, why should I not partake in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass?

    Now, should of course they do want to act on their spite or I figure out they are setting me up for something sinful, I certainly won't hesitate to bring up such concerns among my allies or respected clergy involved, but I should not let them fear me out of the Latin Mass.

    So therefore, if I want to go to a Latin Mass in the Archdiocese of Toronto, despite the lack of vigilance against TBB behaviours, alone or with family/friends, I will go in unto the altar of God, [and] to God, Who giveth the joy of my youth.

    Now, as for those of you "Glad Trads", feel free if you spot me after Mass, or before if there is time, to say hello and introduce yourself. Pray with me to the Lord, sit with me too if you like, get to know me, and be an example with me that Glad Trads are here to stay in the Archdiocese and the majority. The true governance of spiritual affairs in the Archdiocese is under the bishops under ++Collins, and the Latin Mass is for ALL types of trads, not just the stereotypical ones.

    Before I sign off, upcoming things or intended projects here on SUD:

    1. Thanks to one group now confirming a special TLM offering, the Fall 2014 Special Offerings post will be made.
    2. Altar server postings in the works: Low Mass with One Server, and the Acolyte position.

    Pax, Julian.


    Tuesday, 19 August 2014

    Two Notes of Blogging Here on S.U.D and Highlight from Fr. Z on Pope Francis End of Papacy (What?)

    Hello Everyone,

    Just a couple of brief notes here on blogging at S.U.D.

    1) Don't expect a lot of altar serving progress or new postings here on Servimus for the next while. Right Now I am knee deep in a really excellent summer course I am taking with St. Paul University Ottawa and Mission of the Redeemer Ministries, called the Summer Institute for New Evangelization. When I am done, I intend to do a post about this course to highlight (and thank) the awesome work of the people and content that created this course, including some of its awesome, powerful revelations I gained with it. They are a lot more Traditionally Catholic than one might think.

    Might I add it's for 3 years and earns a certificate or university credit w/St. Paul? Needless to say I have to get my papers (3 of them! One per section of lectures) done by Aug 29th and I have to catch up on video lectures cause I can't afford to take that time off work (I only get 3 weeks unpaid leave until a couple more years later).

    Oh, one other note of importance here, on this point. of whom I must give credit to. My TA for the course is none other than the blog-roll master for the SCCC .... Dr. Colin Kerr! Small world eh?

    2) I have noticed that I have been getting a lot of hits this past while because of a post I wrote here, about the Nun symbol and my reasons for NOT jumping on this trend, despite now, more and more "Glad Trad"/Orthodox Leaning/"Neo-Cath" bloggers and friends are jumping on it. While I do value the additional hits because it is still a trend, do realize that I present an alternate viewpoint, and those were my reasons at that time. Also, despite the change in who's donning the symbol of death (or solidarity), I am not going to change my stance on the issue, to be consistent, even if this isn't the "Traditional Catholic" thing to do.

    However, the positive side effect is that you have been viewing my other postings on my blog, whether archived, or even the more recent ones, even those that wouldn't be deemed "major" posts. Thank you for doing so, and please, do view the central focus of my blog, the altar serving postings that have been created under this page.

    And now, the Highlight from Fr. Z.

    Today's highlight is a post from prolific Traditional hero priest, Fr. John Zuhlsdorf of What Does the Prayer Really Say?. He posted an interesting post about questions asked to the Holy Father on the airplane leaving from South Korea. Read the posting here. In a nutshell, Pope Francis speaks about Benedict XVI and his re-introducing of the Pope Emeritus (or ability to retire from the Papacy). In the interview, it sounds like as if Pope Francis is pretty much telling us how he's going to leave the Papacy: A) "I'll be dead in a few years given my age", or 2) "I will copy Benedict XVI when I'm too weak to function, and I'm retiring."

    My take on it: It's perfectly logical and rational for Pope Francis to say such things. He's 77, a few years shy of being an octogenarian, he's got 1.5 lungs, he might be receiving medical treatment (corticosteroids) according to some sources and weight gain is a common side effect, and he's possibly been slowing down a bit. Look, he's getting old folks, it happens. Also being in a leadership position in an institution in a modern world of the Internet and 24/7 social media, with many of the people in the Church being lukewarm or your enemies (in truth), would stress out anyone, and age them biologically too. It's gonna happen folks. Not to mention Benedict XVI changed the game plan with that Pope Emeritus thing. So you could say "The writing is on the wall," not barring miracles of the Holy Trinity.

    Pax, Julian.


    Saturday, 9 August 2014

    Highlight: Pope Francis Speaks to Altar Servers in Germany!

    Hello Everyone.

    I was browsing my Facebook news feed and came across a posting from one of my Catholic groups: Our Lady's Knights of the Altar. This group is a modern re-working/return of a classic program that was used by many parishes pre-Vatican II (and sadly sacked post Vatican II in the wake of the Novus Ordo), and within the last 2 years the group has existed, they already have 8 Chapters! Please see their program at http://www.knightsofourlady.com/home/lightbox.html if you are thinking about a formal structure for your Novus Ordo or Extraordinary Form altar serving. It even has a special rank built in for those who can do the EF, above the normal serving of the OF!

    Today, they linked to this article from the National Catholic Register (affiliated with EWTN and receives articles from Catholic Answers affiliated apologists and authors), where the Pope spoke to ~50K altar servers in Germany. One may see the video of his speech at Radio Vaticana's website:
    http://www.radiovaticana.va/player/index_fb.asp?language=it&tic=VA_LHQNGP3U . There is also the summary report here on News.Va, the Vatican`s News reporting website. As for the full context of the speech, it`s too soon for the English translation, but one will find it here eventually:
    http://w2.vatican.va/content/francesco/en/speeches/2014/august/index.html .

    Since News.VA has a more detailed summary, I`ll post some of its juicier tidbits here and let my commentary be in Marian blue (or close to it) ink.:

    “Through this concrete man by the name of Jesus, we can understand what God really meant. He wants to free human beings, so that they might always feel protected as children of a good father.” 

    That's right, through JESUS, not just through God/Allah, etc. Not to mention he is un-heretical by acknowledging Jesus' human nature here as well, vs. the heresies of early Church history. Syncretism or lukewarmness here? I think not! 

    But, the Pope said, to realize this plan, God needs a human person, “a woman, a mother, who brings the Son into the world. She is the Virgin Mary, whom we honor in this evening's celebration. Mary was totally free. In her freedom she said ‘yes.’ She always did good. So she served God and human beings. Let us imitate her example, if we want to know what God expects of us as His children.”

    So, doctrinally, we have here acknowledgement of the Blessed Virgin Mary, her "fiat" as it were, as well as indirectly, though not initially, her freedom from Original Sin, as well as that she had a human free will. Might I remind you, that her freedom from sin IS the dogma of the Immaculate Conception, pronounced Ex Cathedra in 1854 by Pope Pius IX, in Ineffiablis Deus?

    Here, in the example of Mary, is some of how the Pope is trying to provide for a model for altar servers. That in Mary's fiat, she said, Yes, "servo" to God in His desire to have her be the Theotokos, the Christ-bearer. Likewise, we servers, should too, say yes, to serving, whenever we can to our Lord, barring utter necessary duties. What a great example for Pope Francis to give us altar servers to emulate in our practice.  

    .... He said the world “needs people who will testify to others that God loves us, that He is our Father.” Young people have a special role to play in this mission, the Pope said: “You are called to speak of Jesus to your contemporaries, not only those within your parishes or associations, but especially to those outside....

    Here, responding to the call of the New Evangelization, I love what the Pope is saying here. First, I love that he is acknowledging the role that young people, even youth altar serving, can play a role in the New Evangelization. It is tying in with our Baptismal role that we have as members of the Body of Christ, that we all play a role in bringing about the Gospel to our world, and the salvation of souls. It's not just for the priests, or the choirmasters, or the teachers. No, we young people, too, without credentials, or Holy Orders, can be apostles for Christ! 

    Further, he wants us to take what we do as servers, and our Faith, outside of the Church! Now, I am going to go on a bit of a stretch here, but I hope would hope it would agree with what the Holy Father has said and preached. In my journeys as an altar server, one thing I have sadly witnessed, is that people tend to simply remain inward with our faith, and huddle in our little traditionalist/Novus Ordo, etc. communities, all the while giving into the temptation to be ... "querulous and disillusioned pessimists, "sourpusses." (85, Evangelii Gaudium). This would include both generally, and in the serving parts somewhat, things such as only remaining with the "ultra-trad" communities and not all trad communities, keeping a firmly rigid traditionalist (or liberal) view on things, and going about as a Catholic without a joy of the Gospel, or not being involved in both forms of the Roman Rite. This would also include comments that are anywhere from passive-aggressive, to possibly disparaging against Vatican II, the Novus Ordo, Ecumenism, etc. It is almost like rebellion against Holy Mother Church and makes you wonder why should one bother being a Catholic when it is so "damaged?:  

    Now, does sticking to the EF alone make you a sourpuss? No. However, when done in part and parcel with a certain "fortress" mentality and just staying put without spreading the Faith, we altar servers are not spreading the Joy of the Gospel. We might be serving on the altar, or praying our Latin, but our actions become reduced to clockwork-like mechanics on display, vs. inspiring our fellow laity to more reverence. Our dispositions and words become ``grey`` and uninviting to those who are seeking spiritual nourishment or considering EF serving. I particularly think about the contradictions I've seen in my few years between servers with a ``joy`` in serving, vs. others who have an all ``holy`` mentality. The joyful ones, were those who showed when they served on, and acted outside of the altar, a positive influence in what they do and a happiness about serving the Lord, one that, were I not so Traditionally minded, would make me want to come back to the EF if I was lukewarm or just ``trying it out.`` Even our youngest servers, can express this joy, as I witnessed at the Sacred Heart 2014 Mass I served with St. Patrick`s Gregorian Choir. 

    To me, Pope Francis is saying (as he has repeatedly,) we have to stop being closed minded upon ourselves, only remaining in our little elitist communities whereby anyone who is "not Trad" or "not-uber Catholic" (that is not blatantly trying to dissent from the Church willfully), is not worth speaking to, and we need to start being more happy about our Faith and the joys it offers, all the while NOT giving into the errors of our more radical brethren. Further, let's not just be an example to our fellow Trad Catholics, how about our non-EF Catholics too, and even our Non-Catholic friends too as servers! Let our Joy and our service be our basis for our Evangelization! He`s doing a Missionary calling for us! Time to take our serving (and our Glad Trad or Happy Ordo) minds and hearts outside the Sacristy, and into our lives!

    Finally, to me, or what I want to focus on, he said about commitments in a young person`s life:

    `` ... he understood the difficulties many young people experience in balancing their commitment to serving at church with various other activities “necessary for human and cultural growth.” ... among the many demands in one’s daily routine, the Pope said, one of our priorities must be remembering our Creator, Who gives us life, Who loves us, and Who accompanies us on our journey.

    He realizes that young people`s attentions are constantly being competed for, whether by their own interests, teachers who think piling homework on kids is the best way for them to learn, or eager parents who want their children`s lives to be fully ``enriched,`` be it to have what they did not, to not be bored, or to prepare junior to become the world`s next Bill Gates or Sidney Crosby. These interests do compete and clash with ``Holy`` activities, as these primarily happen 1) usually on school weeknights in the case of practices (e.g. choirs), or 2) on weeeknds whereby most sports activities and practices often tail into music classes, or occur in the mornings contradicting Holy Mass, even on Saturday evenings. In otherwords, as I`ve hinted at in my introductory serving posts, you gotta make this your #1 activity! Christ! God! Best thing since sliced bread over your other activities! While I wish Pope Francis would have been more gutsy and told the youth that should conflict occur to toss those things aside for Christ as the ``Pearl of Great Price``, Making God #1 isn't too bad. 

    So there. What a good find! H/T to Our Lady's Knights of the Altar. Pax, Julian. 

    Thursday, 7 August 2014

    Some Small Updates and Works in Progress

    Short story, I`ve made a couple of additions to the blog rules page, effective immediately.

    I`ve noticed a trend of leaving a disparaging comment or two in my comment box, that the commentators know won`t be posted, but they think it`s fun to do. This has happened on occasion, and I`m sick of it. Big bad comments are now grounds for public banning on SUD, and lighter, passive-aggressive types of comments are grounds for a warning (with maybe one more after that, but never three warnings).

    In addition, I`ve decided I need to get back to developing the crux that goes with this blog: Latin Mass Serving Posts. I`ve currently got a draft for the Acolyte position in progress, but I think I will add to that, and complete first, another post for serving the Low Mass solo. I did not do solo serving first, as I started out with two person Low Masses in training. Just don`t expect them anytime soon. They require much work and I do more than just say, ``this is what you do at each part`` as I try to go into the importance of the role, and I do consult serving resources to make it a more complete posting.

    Pax, Julian.