Wow. Just a month into his papacy and Pope Francis is starting to hit the homiletics hard! While he hasn't gotten to fire and brimstone homilies just yet, these recent homilies of his are becoming quite in line with what Benedict XVI has proclaimed, and even more curt I say.
This past Monday, in Mass with the Vatican telecommunications office staff, he gave a "fervorino," an Italian term for a small, but passionate homily. The coverage of the summary of his homily is here on the Vatican's online news service, news.va: http://www.news.va/en/news/pope-calumny-destroys-the-work-of-god-in-people. Considering it was the telecommunications office, they got a well-needed homily appropriate to their jobs.
Besides focusing on the account of the Church's first recorded martyr, St. Stephen, he then proceeded to attack one of the most egregious "social" sins in my opinion plaguing our post-modern society, of which has been attacking the Church from all quarters, calumny. The first reading of Monday's Novus Ordo allowed him to open up into this, as he states, " ... Stephen was a victim of calumny. He is accused of “false witness” but it is not a “fair fight, a fight between good men” ... Stephen’s enemies chose the path of a dirty fight, “the path of calumny ....”
Now this is where I really got interested in what Francis had to say: ".... Calumny he continued is worse than sin - it is the direct expression of Satan."
WHAT!!!!???? ANOTHER MENTION OF THE EVIL ONE????? I swear, already I have seen two homilies from this Pope mentioning the Devil and his false works. Wow! Once again the Pope is courageous enough to call a spade a spade. If this trend continues, we might have a historical first post-Vatican II as the Pope who mentioned the Devil in his homily the most times!!! At least you can't say Francis is soft on the spiritual war we undertake as Church militant. If this is what he has to offer in his first few weeks as Pope perhaps a year from now he'll churn out something big.
Going back to the topic on calumny, how right of him to call the Devil out on this, and the disgusting filth of this sin. Calumny is exactly what it is: Lying! Lying by debasement of one`s character to inflict intentional damage of any sort to a person, or persons. And the Devil? Traditional Catholics/Priests know him by another title: "THE FATHER OF LIES". Between the Devil being depicted by Dante in the farthest, deepest circle of hell with its main sin of Pride, and his big lie in the Fall of Adam and Eve, I am not surprised for His Holiness to call this sin out for what it is and it's connection to the works of the Devil.
Back to his homily, ""We are all sinners; all of us. We all commit sins. But calumny is something else. It is of course a sin, too, but it is something more. Calumny aims to destroy the work of God, and calumny comes from a very evil thing: it is born of hatred. AND HATE IS THE WORK OF SATAN. Calumny destroys the work of God in people, in their souls. Calumny uses lies to get ahead. And let us be in no doubt, eh?: Where there is calumny, there is Satan himself. "
(Mouth is dropped for 5 seconds ...). This is incredible. This was blunt, direct, and intentional for the sake of our spiritual salvation. Further, in our media saturated world, both the secular and Catholic media of both sides, Traditional and "liberal/Cafeteria" Catholic, have been attacking other faithful, spiritual and episcopal offices, and the Holy Father with slander. Social media has only intensified this vile sin of calumny, under the guise of "telling the TRUTH"/what they refuses to tell you, or as weapons of control and order for selfish purposes, all the while disregarding the humanity and spiritual soul of the person(s) at the receiving end of the calumnist's lies. These liars fail to realize their actions can damage the recipients permanently, to the point of translating into self-harm, even suicide. Look at young men and women in middle and high school who are bullied into suicide, when the calumnists call them anything from fat to implying loose sexual mores, or disposing entirely of their human dignity for any reason. Even saying anything as simple as the classic "you are a loser" is an example of calumny and participating in the Evil One's works.
Further, the Pope discussed the accused, Stephen, with regard to his martyrship, but had these words to say to us ... all of us, especially Catholics: "But the age of martyrs is not yet over, even today we can say, in truth, that the Church has more martyrs now than during the first centuries. The Church has many men and women who are maligned through calumny, who are persecuted, who are killed in hatred of Jesus, in hatred of the faith: some are killed because they teach the catechism, others are killed because they wear the cross ... Today, in many countries, they are maligned, they are persecuted ... they are our brothers and sisters who are suffering today, in this age of the martyrs".
That`s right. Our Christian/Catholic brethen in some European/Middle Eastern countries or ones with predominantly militant theocracies (e.g. Muslim extremism in Egypt) are being persecuted. Don't however think that we are so fortunate in a "Western" or "democratic" nation. Quickly, yet in small steps, our freedom of religion is being eroded, and our education systems are being attacked by our secular governments at the regional/provincial levels and even federally. E.g. Obama and mandatory contraception provisions, McGuinty/Broten/Wynne and the sex education curriculum in schools + Bill 13 "anti-bullying law" that was passed in Ontario law recently.
Between politicians who at the least will not even pass bills on legislating the right to life, to those who maliciously enforce what can be taught in the education systems of our schools which violates the ethos and central goal of Catholic education, and the promotion of sexual and moral indecencies (with accompanying increases in legal statuses in such favour or for liberal supporters), we in future, or in your childrens' future, may be looking at persecution even in these developed, democratic nations. We are talking permanent jail time at the least, with possible militant force (just wait for a martial law/emergency law/reinstatement of death penalty edict, and this might even come about somehow from "conservatives" ...).
And so, the Pope called out this disgusting work of the Devil, which has especially been plaguing Traditional Catholic blogs as of late, and gave us sharp words of warning. I do hope you, and others who see this, will take heed and spiritual stock of themselves and turn to Him, who is Lord.
Pax Tibi Christi. Julian.
Fall 2014 Latin Mass Special Offerings, SEE HERE!
- Sources of Information for Special Offerings Latin Mass Listings
- COLLECTION OF MY LATIN MASS QUESTION AND ANSWER POSTS AND ALTAR SERVING POSTS
- The Liguorian Reflection Series on Many Ascetical Works
- BLOG RULES!!! READ THEM BEFORE YOU COMMENT OR E-MAIL ME!
- Contact Information
- Servimus Unum Deum - Latin Mass Serving Group
- LONG TERM PROJECT: Vatican II Reading and Countering with the Actual Documents, AND YOU CAN HELP!!!
- Known Latin Mass Listings in the Archdiocese of To...