How many are
is God telling us?
April 14, 2019
the One, True, Holy, Catholic Church
understanding of its sacred dogmas must be perpetually
retained, which Holy
Mother Church once declared; and there must never be
a recession from that meaning under the specious name
of a deeper understanding
(Blessed Pope Pius IX, 1st Vatican Council, S.3, C.2
on Revelation, 1870 ex cathedra)
A Very Serious Matter of
wish to invoke several absolutely vital, indeed,
indispensable passages from Holy Scripture
words of Our Blessed Lord Himself,
and His Apostles.
I wish then to present the
words of Francis.
I make no judgment on the latter.
Franciss words are clear and unambiguous.
reading of the two,
both in conjunction and contraposition apart from the profoundly
questionable theological adaptation of
hermeneutics and the German Emeritus Benedicts adjunct
of continuity reveals not simply a disjunction (semiotic
or otherwise) but much more importantly a contradiction.
We are well aware of the Scriptural
references adduced, but perhaps less aware of Franciss
I think it important to make
them clear, and to allow the Catholic reader to make the necessary
inferences even deductions entailed, completely explicit
to such a point that even the most disinterested reader will
arrive at an ineluctable conclusion at which he will recognize
The conclusion is of the utmost importance, involving as it
does, the raison d'etre
and concomitantly the primary mission of the Catholic Church:
or the Salvation of Souls.
Peter and John
replied: Do you think that God wants us to obey
(Acts of the Apostles 4.19)
uttered the following:
Go therefore, and teach
all nations; baptizing them in the name of the Father,
and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Teach them to
observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.
into the whole world, and preach the Gospel to every
creature. He that believeth and
is baptized, shall be saved: but he that believeth
not shall be condemned. (Saint
Francis, by contrast, uttered the
Do you need
to convince the other to become Catholic?
out and meet him. He is your brother.
This is enough.
is solemn nonsense.
It makes no sense!
[just] need to get to know each other.
On the other hand,
the Apostle Saint John argued the following:
then shall they call on Him, in whom they have not believed?
Or how shall they believe him, of whom they have not heard?
And how shall they hear, without a preacher? And how
shall they preach unless they be sent ...?
And the Apostle
Saint Paul was absolutely clear:
(I Corinthians 9.16)
obvious question is How do we reconcile these quite
disparate and apparently contradictory utterances?
answer is equally clear: we cannot. They are contradictory.
What Christ, Saint John, and Saint Paul teach is not simply
incompatible with what Francis teaches but,
much more seriously irreconcilable.
are wrong, or one is wrong.
all can be wrong, but not all can be right.
is a matter of Logic 101: The Principle of Non-Contradiction
which holds that contradictory propositions cannot both
be true, e. g. the two propositions A is B
and A is not B
are mutually exclusive. Formally this is expressed as the tautology
~(p & ~p)
and The Law of the Excluded Middle which
that for any proposition, either that proposition is true, or
its negation is)
Conclusion? Francis is either a heretic or non compos
mentis (not of a sound mind). He can be both. But
he cannot be neither.
Geoffrey K. Mondello
Boston Catholic Journal
April 10, 2019
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of our fathers, living still ... ?
the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on earth?
more stunning, no more frightening,
and perhaps no more ominously portentous words are spoken
in all the Gospels, in fact, in the entire New Testament
perhaps even in the entirety of Sacred Scripture itself
words that become increasingly
fraught with significance with every passing generation.
Indeed, we must wonder if they are, in fact, spoken of
this generation ... or of one
soon very soon, to come.
the Son of Man comes will He find Faith on earth?
with so many of Christs
teachings, the troubling question Christ puts to us in asking
if He will so much as find Faith upon His
return is too often and too deftly explained away especially
by the overwhelming number of liberal theologians and bishops
who have proliferated and multiplied since 1962 which
is to say, by
learned and the wise.
It would appear that either Christ does not know
what He is saying, or we do not know what He is saying
although we all agree that He said something that sounds
are twelve words, however, to which we must pay careful
attention, perhaps more now than at any other time in Church
reluctant we are to take Christ at His word which becomes
increasingly inconvenient to us we must recognize
that Jesus never spoke idly: His words, His teachings
and yes, His Commandments were always
uttered to one explicit end: the salvation of souls
attaining to Heaven and everlasting happiness and to avoiding
Hell and eternal misery. The Jewish religious authorities
of His own time had scornfully dismissed Christs
warning that not so much as stone would remain standing
in the great Temple 1 ... the very Temple within
which, 70 years later, these words were fulfilled when Rome
laid waste in days what took 46 years to build.
We tend to view such alarming statements
made by Jesus and there are many with the same scorn
and disdain today.
Indeed ... what
has become of the
of our Fathers?
mere fifty years ago we ourselves would have instinctively
course He will find faith! There simply must be
some deeper, some obscure and less evident meaning to this
that we do not presently understand and what He
appears to be saying, He is not really saying at all.
of our own day can deftly explain the answer to this troubling
question. In the end, they will conclude, Jesus is really
asking something entirely different from what He appears
to be asking and that it has nothing to do with our very
real defection from the Faith.
is likely that many Jews of Jesus
time both the learned and the unlearned had replied
in much the same way. In fact, they did. 2
In other words, to us, our faith, the Faith of the Catholic
Church for two millennia, could no sooner disappear than
... well, the stones of the great Temple 2000 years ago!
If, however, we take a careful inventory of our present
and undeniably dismal and increasingly scandalous situation
in the Church especially as it has unfolded in
the last five decades Jesus does not quite appear as ...
... as so many apparently make Him to be.
Ask yourself the following:
Has the Faith the Catholic Faith indeed, has Christianity
itself, flourished in the last 50
years, or has it withered?
Are vocations to the Priesthood and Religious life
growing or dwindling?
Are Catholics (are Christians in general) having
more children or are they having
Are Missionary efforts, to the end of (dare we say it?)
as mandated by Christ 2 encouraged
as intrinsic to Catholicism or are they discouraged
as impolite, obtrusive, culturally imperialistic and
inherently inimical to the
spirit of Vatican II
especially as interpreted by Pope Francis for
is solemn nonsense,
to use his own words?
Is it really the case that
to Christ and His Church is actively discouraged
that especially under Pope Francis it is no
longer understood as a holy and inherently necessary
endeavor rather than being disdained,
even dismissed, as
and culturally incorrect
indeed, has it really come to this: that promoting
our Catholic Faith as Christ has commanded us to, been
all but forbidden by Francis
coterie of feckless and disaffected cardinals and bishops?
Is our understanding of the Catholic Church, as an
absolutely unique institution
indispensable to the ordinary means of salvation, emphasized
as urgently today (if it is emphasized at all) as it
was a hundred years ago? Fifty years ago? Indeed,
is the concept itself of the singularity and indispensability
of the Holy Catholic Church authentically
deemed a dogma and a viable concept any longer?
all our insolence and equivocation, we know the
answers, and we are uncomfortable with them, for they
fly in the face of Christ and all that He taught to say
nothing of Sacred Scripture, Holy Tradition, and the Sacred
Deposit of the Faith entrusted to the Catholic Church by
question takes on a greater sense of urgency, for the sheep
are scattered and confused as never before. The papacy
of Francis has been disastrous for the Church. Why? Because
he has taken Vatican II to its logical conclusion: the irrelevance
of the Church.
Ubi est Pastor?
Where is the Shepherd?
Where is the Shepherd? Who is earnestly addressing
this spiritual malaise and religious decay, the indolence
and dereliction of the vast majority of American and European
bishops who appear far more eager for secular plaudits than
the now quaint and discredited notion of
salvation of souls.
Pope Francis has effectively declared this mandate defunct
in favor of the rehabilitation and sometimes transformation
of bodies, societies, economies, and the environment.
That the passing material environment of man is infinitely
less important than the eternal abode of his soul
often appears to elude Francis. Indeed, it appears to elude
most Catholics whose mantra increasingly coincides with
the worlds: Social activism! ... not
interior conversion away from this
world and to Christ.
Shame! Shame on us!
our silence, our fear of being disparaged by
for the sake of Christ, we condone this travesty
are complicit in it ... even promote
it! What will motivate us to recognize, and to redress,
this frightful and ultimately deadly state of affairs?
are, after all, other contenders in this world for
the souls of men ... seen and unseen! As our own
wick smolders, others blaze! The burning Crescent of Islam,
poised like a scimitar, and every bit as deadly, glows and
grows in the east, and with it, not an ethnic, but
a Religious Cleansing to which the world remains
indifferent an expunging of every vestige of Christianity
in partibus infidelium. Even the European Union will
no longer tolerate the inclusion of its indissoluble Christian
heritage within its Constitution. Not only does it thoroughly
repudiate its own Christian cultural heritage it prohibits
it even banishes it!
then, in our effort to remedy this impending state of dissolution,
we will first turn to our bishops, since they are,
and Guardians of the Faith.
But more often than not much more often than not
in the well-appointed office at the end of the corridor
we do not find a shepherd of souls but a deeply sequestered,
occasionally avuncular, and predictably remote ...
his prime responsibility
as Teacher and Promoter of the Faith ... to others,
in the form of Lay committees and subcommittees largely
Catholics more concerned with social issues than the salvation
of souls, are we confident that the patrimony of our faith
will somehow percolate through this strata of already contaminated
soil and reach our children authentically and intact? Is
our fear mitigated ... or further exacerbated ... by our
resolute lack of diligence in being attentive to
what Catholic colleges and theologians in their
own dioceses are really teaching and who
are teaching the teachers ... who, in turn, are
teaching our children?
Do you think that
your bishop actually that is to say, cognitively
is aware of, or even concerned with what the teachers
themselves are actually teaching?
in this diocese. Not in Boston. In fact, Cardinal Sean Patrick
routinely fetes, praises, and holds up as exemplary
who churn out our children to the Sacrament of Confirmation
with no clue whatever of that in which they are being
confirmed. By comparison, even the dismal
failure of our public schools in Boston must be deemed a
most of us especially in the Archdiocese of Boston, but
no less elsewhere the answer is, as they say, a
it is a universally resounding
Most of us find, to our growing dismay and deepening cynicism,
that our Bishops appear to have
things to do ... than to communicate the Faith to the faithful
... especially the children.
Really, we beg the question: if no one teaches the teachers
who, then, teaches the children? If they are not
brought the faith by those to whom it has been
entrusted the bishops, the episcopacy
who will bring it to them?
Will they how can they
acquire the Faith ... if no one brings it to them? Saint
Paul is very clear about this:
then shall they call on him, in whom they have
not believed? Or how shall they believe him,
of whom they have not heard? And how shall they
hear, without a preacher? And how shall they
preach unless they be sent ...?
yourself candidly: do you know more ...
or less ... of your Catholic faith than
your children? Very likely more although, in all honesty,
it is probably little. You politely assent to the now quaint
Catholic notion that
are the primary teachers of their children,
but knowing little of your own Faith, you simply shell out
$50.00 per child and pan off this grave responsibility
to others of whom you know nothing, and who themselves largely
know nothing of the faith they presume to teach.
You go through the motions as careless of what your children
are taught in their 10 years of
as your Bishop is of what the teachers teach. 10 years later,
and $500 poorer per child, you scratch your head and wonder
why Johnny still does not know God, and why Judy never goes
to Mass and yet we have agreed that you know more than
your children ...
What, then, we must ask with growing apprehension will
your children teach their
What will they
who know even less than you teach those who know nothing?
momentum, as we see, is inexorable until it culminates
in total ignorance: every generation knows less
of their faith than the generation preceding it. It
is, in the end, the devolution from doctrine to legend,
from legend to fiction, and from fiction to myth.
That is not just a poor, but a stultifying and ultimately
This default at every level
in transmitting the authentic Catholic faith intact
... leaves Jesus question suddenly very real.
a Gallup poll was taken on Catholic attitudes
toward Holy Communion. The poll showed serious
confusion among Catholics about one of the most
basic beliefs of the Church.
Only 30 percent of those surveyed
believe they are actually receiving the Body
and Blood, soul and divinity of the Lord Jesus
Christ under the appearance of bread and wine.
problem is more than mathematical, as we have seen; it is
exponential. 70% of Catholics do not possess this
most fundamental, this most essential understanding
of the core article of genuine Catholic doctrine: that
you eat of the flesh of the Son of Man, and drink His Blood,
you have no life in you.
It is not just a matter of the greatest concern,
but nothing less than a matter of the gravest dereliction
that most Catholics do not realize
do not know that the very Mass itself
is an abbreviation of
Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass,
and that it is really a Sacrifice,
the actual re-enactment of Calvary
before their very eyes!
This failure of understanding ...
culminates in a failure in Faith. It possesses,
in significant ways, the remorseless characteristics of
mathematical certainties. Not understanding, grasping
having never been taught the most elementary
features of the faith, how can they be understood to possess
what they have not acquired, and how can they transmit,
pass on, what they do not possess? It is inescapable.
Prognostication, of course, is for fools.
the words of Christ are certainties that will
come to pass.
not for Me, but for your children,
Christ told the sorrowing women on the road to Calvary.
Jesus question, then
the Son of Man comes will He find faith on earth?,
is not a
at all; it is a question fraught with enormous significance
... the frightful answer to which appears to be unfolding
before our very eyes but that is if
you take Christ at His word and given Jesus
track record on things yet to come, we would do well and
wisely to give pause for more than thought.
Are you worried now ...? Not nearly enough.
is all the more frightening still.
Boston Catholic Journal
Saint Luke 23.28
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The Odor of Sulfur ... not Sanctity
Vade post Me Satana, scandalum
es Mihi: quia non sapis ea quae Dei
sunt, sed ea quae hominum.
(Saint Matthew 16.23)
thee behind me, Satan, thou art a scandal unto Me:
because thou savorest not the things that are of God, but
the things that are of men.
Christs words ... to Saint Peter the first pope
when, of himself, Peter decided the
way that Jesus should go ... the way that he himself deemed
the best path. Imagine ... for that moment Peter was Satan!
It is staggering!
for Francis, unimaginable ...
not Smelled it?
to the pope presumes the popes obedience to Christ
and to the nearly 2000 year old Sacred Deposit of Faith
that Christ entrusted to His Bride the Church. In Holy Scripture,
in Sacred Tradition, and in the Deposit of Faith
we find the fullness of truth and the unerring certainty of
the will of God in all things. Who defects from any of the three
defects from all and who teaches otherwise teaches heresy. He
is separated from the Church. 1
No one is exempt because no one is immune
to grievous sin sin so grave that excommunication is incurred
latζ sententiζ (automatically: as soon as the sin is
committed). Canon Law 1463 states:
particularly grave sins incur excommunication, the most severe
ecclesiastical penalty, which impedes the reception of the sacraments
and the exercise of certain ecclesiastical acts, and for which
absolution consequently cannot be granted, according to canon
law, except by the Pope, the bishop of the place or priests
authorized by them.
But what if
the pope himself is the excommunicate (latae sententiae)
... or even worse?
Who is not confused?
In the face of the near daily assaults by the
present papacy itself and an episcopacy in apparent complicity
with him on 2000 years of the consistent teaching of the Church,
on the very Deposit of Faith, and on the validity of Sacred
Scripture itself, what Catholic has not asked in the fearfully
deep and most secret recesses of his soul the question
Whence? From whom and from what comes this
relentless scourging of faith even at the vertex of the Church
itself this overwhelming defection from all that is
holy to all that is vile?
There is smoke in the sanctuary
and instinctively we perceive it, recoil from
it. It is proffered as incense but is pungent to our senses
as the fume of smoldering sulfur.
We are confused between the Word of God become
Man and the word of man become god.
What a fearful divide rends the Body of Christ
anew! See how the sheep are scattered! Need we tell
you who is the father of confusion and lies ...?
No Longer Inconceivable
... the pope himself as the principle cause
of confusion and defection in the Catholic Church.
It is nothing less than ... diabolically clever.
Francis indeed whom satan has sought to sift
like wheat 2 and sadly, it would appear,
with much success and to great measure.
Manifest Complicity with Evil
and the "Father of Lies" himself
In our obligation to Charity (one of the three
Theological Virtues: Faith and Hope being the other two),
we should pray that Francis, together with the cardinals and
bishops complicit with him, should renounce their complicity
with satan, the father of lies and their collaboration with
the manifest evil that they have embraced and propagated and
through which they would pull down the walls of the Church and
make Christ a liar! Indeed, did not Jesus speak of this current
Brood of Vipers when He said:
You are of your father the devil,
and the desires of your father you will do.
He was a murderer from the beginning, and he stood
in the truth; because truth is not in him.
When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own:
for he is a liar, and the father thereof.
(St. John 8.44)
cardinals, bishops, and priests have lost their faith altogether
and no longer believe what Christ Himself and Holy Mother the
Church taught for 2000 years. Formally, this is called apostasy.
They have defected from the Bride of Christ because She
is pure and their desires are evil She is not of
this world but they are! Her Body is chaste and
their desires are perverse, corrupt, and defiled. It is precisely
in the paradigm of the
The Third Temptation of Christ
that we find the provenance of this defection (apostasy.
What Jesus Christ spurned (worldly power and glory
), they have lusted
for and in exchange for it have given the required tribute
to the father of lies satan who openly boasts of
the power and the glory of this world, that:
to me they
are delivered, and I give them to whom I will
(St. Luke 4.5-6).
The Tribute due to the father
And what is that
tribute? LIES. If the father is a liar, then his
brood can only be liars, too. Christ has already told
desires of your father you will do ... for he is a liar,
and the father thereof.
In exchange for power and
perversion they have traded lies: lies about Christs
teaching, about the authentic teaching of the Catholic
Church, about the Sacred Deposit of Faith, about Catholic Doctrine
and Dogma, about morals, about Heaven and Hell about Sacred
Scripture itself! They have lusted for power
perhaps even more than they have shamefully and perversely
lusted for other men and to acquire this power they have
traded truth for lies!
It is, we
will find, through the Faithful, the Laity, that the Church
will be delivered just as it was in the days of the early
heresies when miter and crozier, cardinal and bishop, were bent
in submission to apostasy from the Faith apostasies to which
the laity, having learned the truth in holy simplicity, gave
no heed. They could smell a wolf under the greatest abundance
is the Good Shepherd.
sheep follow Him, because they know His voice.
But a stranger they follow not, but fly from him, because
they know not the voice of strangers.
(Saint John 10:4-5)
Hold fast to
the Faith of our Fathers! Cleave to Christ and to what He
has taught us, to what Holy Mother Church taught us
prior to Vatican II and fear nothing, and no one no matter
his power or how ruthlessly he demands submission.
there is no other name under Heaven given to men, whereby we
must be saved.
Did not Christ
will not forsake you.
(Saint John 14.18)?
Nor must we
ever forsake Him through any inducement to sin
2 Saint Luke 22.31
Boston Catholic Journal
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Reading on the Papacy of Francis:
Martyrology for today:
Thursday April 18th
in the Year of Grace 2019
Season of Lent
This Day, the Eighteenth Day of April
At Rome, St. Apollonius, a senator under
the emperor Commodus and the prefect Perennius. Having been denounced
as a Christian by one of his slaves, and being commanded to give an
account of his faith, he composed an able work which he read in the
Senate. He was nevertheless decapitated for Christ by the sentence of
At Messina, the birthday of the holy martyrs,
Eleutherius, bishop of Illyricum, and Anthia, his mother. Illustrious
by his holiness of life and his power of working miracles, he was, in
the reign of Adrian, laid on a bed of red-hot iron, on a gridiron, in
a pan filled with boiling oil, pitch and rosin; he was cast to the lions,
but, remaining unhurt, he finally had his throat pierced with a sword.
His mother suffered a similar punishment.
In the same place, St. Corebus, prefect,
who was converted to the faith by St. Eleutherius, and died by the sword.
At Brescia, St. Calocerus, a martyr, who
was converted to Christ by Saints Faustinus and Jovita, and under the
same Adrian terminated his glorious combat for the confession of the
At Cordova, St. Perfect, priest and martyr,
killed by the Moors for inveighing against the followers of Muhammad.
At Milan, St. Galdini, cardinal and bishop
of that city, who, at the conclusion of a discourse against heretics,
gave up his soul to God.
In Tuscany, on Mount Senario, blessed Amideus,
one of the seven Founders of the Order of the Servites of the Blessed
Virgin Mary, very celebrated for an ardent love of God.
And elsewhere in divers places, many other holy martyrs, confessors,
and holy virgins.
Omnes sancti Mαrtyres,
orαte pro nobis. ("All ye Holy Martyrs, pray for us", from the
Litaniae Sanctorum, the Litany of the Saints)
Response: Thanks be to God.
Martyrology by Month
Each day we
bring you a calendar, a list really,
of the holy Martyrs who had suffered
and died for Christ, for His Bride the
Church, and for our holy Catholic Faith;
men and women for whom and well they
knew their Profession of Faith would
cost them their lives.
They could have repudiated all three
(Christ, Church, and Catholic Faith)
and kept their lives for a short time
longer (even the lapsi only postponed
their death and at so great a cost!).1
What would motivate men, women, even
children and entire families to willingly
undergo the most evil and painfully
devised tortures; to suffer death rather
Why did they not renounce their Catholic
Faith when the first flame licked at
their feet, after the first eye was
plucked out, or after they were baptized
in mockery by boiling water or molten
lead poured over their heads? Why did
they not flee to offer incense to the
pagan gods since such a ritual concession
would be merely perfunctory, having
been done, after all, under duress,
exacted by the compulsion of the state?
What is a little burned incense and
a few words uttered without conviction,
compared to your own life and the lives
of those you love? Surely God knows
that you are merely placating the state
with empty gestures
Did they love their wives, husbands,
children their mothers, fathers and
friends less than we do? Did they value
their own lives less? Were they less
sensitive to pain than we are? In a
word, what did they possess that we
Nothing. They possessed what we ourselves
are given in the Sacrament of Confirmation
but cleaved to it in far greater measure
than we do: Faith and faithfulness;
fortitude and valor, uncompromising
belief in the invincible reality of
God, of life eternal in Him for the
faithful, of damnation everlasting apart
from Him for the unfaithful; of the
ephemerality of this passing world and
all within it, and lives lived in total
accord with that adamant belief.
We are the Martyrs to come. What made
them so will make us so. What they suffered
we will suffer. What they died for,
we will die for. If only we will! For
most us, life will be a bloodless martyrdom,
a suffering for Christ, for the sake
of Christ, for the sake of the Church
in a thousand ways outside the arena.
The road to Heaven is lined on both
sides with Crosses, and upon the Crosses
people, people who suffered unknown
to the world, but known to God. Catholics
living in partibus infidelium, under
the scourge of Islam. Loveless marriages.
Injustices on all sides. Poverty. Illness.
Old age. Dependency. They are the cruciform!
Those whose lives became Crosses because
they would not flee God, the Church,
the call to, the demand for, holiness
in the most ordinary things of life
made extraordinary through the grace
of God. The Martyrology we celebrate
each day is just a vignette, a small,
immeasurably small, sampling of the
martyrdom that has been the lives of
countless men and women whom Christ
and the Angels know, but whom the world
does not know.
dedi vobis, Christ said to His
Apostles: I have given you an example.
And His Martyrs give one to us and
that is why the Martyrs matter.
Geoffrey K. Mondello
Boston Catholic Journal
Note: We suggest that you explore
our newly edited and revised
De SS. Martyrum Cruciatibus The Torments
and Tortures of the Christian Martyrs
for an in-depth historical account of
the sufferings of the Martyrs.
INTRODUCTION TO THE ROMAN
Gibbons, Archbishop Baltimore
THE ROMAN MARTYROLOGY is an official
and accredited record, on the pages of which are
set forth in simple and brief, but impressive words,
the glorious deeds of the Soldiers of Christ
in all ages of the Church; of the illustrious Heroes
and Heroines of the Cross, whom her solemn verdict
has beatified or canonized. In making up this long
roll of honor, the Church has been actuated by that
instinctive wisdom with which the Spirit of God,
who abides in her and teaches her all truth, has
endowed her, and which permeates through and guides
all her actions. She is the Spouse of Christ, without
spot or wrinkle or blemish, wholly glorious and
undefiled, whom He loved, for whom He died, and
to whom He promised the Spirit of Truth, to comfort
her in her dreary pilgrimage through this valley
of tears, and to abide with her forever. She is
one with Him in Spirit and in love, she is subject
to Him in all things; she loves what He loves, she
teaches and practices what He commands.
If the world has
why should not also the Church of the Living God,
the pillar and the ground of the truth? If men who
have been stained with blood, and women who have
been tainted with vice, have had their memory consecrated
in prose and in verse, and monuments erected to
their memory, because they exhibited extraordinary
talents, achieved great success, or were, to a greater
or less extent, benefactors of their race in the
temporal order, which passeth away, why should not
the true Heroes and Heroines of Jesus, who, imitating
His example, have overcome themselves, risen superior
to and trampled upon the world, have aspired, in
all their thoughts, words, and actions, to a heavenly
crown, and have moreover labored with disinterested
zeal and self-forgetting love for the good of their
fellow-men, have their memories likewise consecrated
and embalmed in the minds and hearts of the people
of God? If time have its heroes, why should not
eternity; if man, why should not God?
friends, O Lord, are exceedingly honored; their
principality is exceedingly exalted.
His Father so dearly loved, the world crucified;
whom the world neglects, despises, and crucifies,
God, through His Church, exceedingly honors and
exalts. Their praises are sung forth, with jubilation
of heart, in the Church of God for ages on ages.
The wisdom of the
Church of God in honoring her Saints is equaled
only by the great utility of the practice thus consecrated.
The Saints are not merely heroes; they are models.
Christ lived in them, and Christ yet speaks through
them. They were the living temples of the Holy Ghost,
in whose mortal bodies dwelt all the riches of His
wisdom and grace. They were in life consecrated
human exemplars of divine excellence and perfection.
Their example still appeals to our minds and to
our hearts, more eloquently even than did their
words to the men of their own generation, while
they were in the tabernacle of the flesh. Though
dead, they still speak. Their relics are instinct
with sanctity, and through them they continue to
breathe forth the sweet odor of Christ. The immortality
into which they have entered still lingers in their
bones, and seems to breathe in their mortal remains.
As many an ardent, spirit has been induced to rush
to the cannon's mouth by reading the exploits of
earthly heroes, so many a generous Christian soul
has been fired with heavenly ardor, and been impelled
to rush to the crown of martyrdom, by reading the
lives and heroic achievements of the Saints and
Martyrs of Christ. Example, in its silent appeal,
is more potent in its influence on the human heart
and conduct than are words in their most eloquent
The Church knows
and feels all this, in the Spirit of God with whom
she is replenished ; and hence she sets forth, with
holy joy and exultant hope, her bright and ever-increasing
Calendar of Sanctity of just men and women made
perfect and rendered glorious, under her unearthly
and sublime teachings. In reading this roll of consecrated
holiness, our instinctive conclusion is, precisely
that which the great soul of St. Augustine reached
at the very crisis of his life, the moment of his
other men like me have attained to such sanctity,
why not I? Shall the poor, the afflicted, the despised
of the World, bear away the palm of victory, the
crown of immortality, while I lie buried in my sloth
and dead in my sins, and thus lose the brilliant
and glorious mansion already prepared for me in
heaven? Shall all the gifts, which God has lavished
upon me, be ingloriously spent and foolishly wasted,
in the petty contest for this world's evanescent
honors and riches, while the poor and contemned
lay up treasures in heaven, and secure the prize
of immortal glory? Shall others be the friends of
God, whom He delights to honor, while I alone remain
His enemy, and an alien from His blessed Kingdom?
It is a consoling
evidence of progress in the spiritual life in this
country to find the Martyrology here published,
for the first time, in English, and thereby made
accessible, in its rich treasures of Sanctity, to
all classes of our population. It will prove highly
edifying and useful, not only to the members of
our numerous religious Communities of both sexes,
but also to the laity generally. Every day has here
its record of Sanctity; and there is scarcely a
Christian, no matter how lowly or how much occupied,
who may not be able to daily peruse, with faith
and with great profit, the brief page of each day's
models of Holiness. These belong to all classes
and callings of life; from the throne to the hovel,
from the Pontiff to the lowest cleric, from the
philosopher to the peasant, from the busy walks
of life to the dreary wastes of the desert.
Let all, then, procure
and read daily the appropriate portions of this
Martyrology. Its daily and pious perusal will console
us in affliction, will animate us in despondency,
will make our souls glow with the love of God in
coldness, and will lift up our minds and hearts
from this dull and ever-changing earth to the bright
and everlasting mansions prepared for us in Heaven!
J. Cardinal Gibbons, Archbishop Baltimore, Maryland
THE APOSTOLIC CONSTITUTION
the very first,
upon Our elevation to the chief Apostleship,
We gladly turned our mind and energies
and directed all out thoughts to those
matters which concerned the preservation
of a pure liturgy, and We strove with
God's help, by every means in our power,
to accomplish this purpose. For, besides
other decrees of the sacred Council
of Trent, there were stipulations for
Us to revise and re-edit the sacred
books: the Catechism, the Missal and
the Breviary. With the Catechism published
for the instruction of the faithful,
by God's help, and the Breviary thoroughly
revised for the worthy praise of God,
in order that the Missal and Breviary
may be in perfect harmony, as fitting
for it is most
becoming that there be in the Church
only one appropriate manner of reciting
the Psalms and
only one rite for the
celebration of Mass
it necessary to give our immediate attention
to what still remained to be done,
viz, the re-editing of the Missal
as soon as possible.
Hence, We decided to entrust this work
to learned men of our selection. They
very carefully collated all their work
with the ancient codices in Our Vatican
Library and with reliable, preserved
or emended codices from elsewhere. Besides
this, these men consulted the works
of ancient and approved authors concerning
the same sacred rites; and thus
they have restored the Missal itself
to the original form and rite of the
holy Fathers. When this work
has been gone over numerous times and
further emended, after serious study
and reflection, We commanded that the
finished product be printed and published
as soon as possible, so that all might
enjoy the fruits of this labor; and
thus, priests would know which prayers
to use and which rites and ceremonies
they were required to observe from now
on in the celebration of Masses.
Let all everywhere adopt and observe
what has been handed down by the Holy
Roman Church, the Mother and Teacher
of the other churches, and let
Masses not be sung or read according
to any other formula than that
of this Missal published by Us.
This ordinance applies
henceforth, now, and
throughout all the provinces of the
Christian world, to all patriarchs,
cathedral churches, collegiate and parish
churches, be they secular or religious,
both of men and of women even of military
orders and of churches or chapels
without a specific congregation in which
conventual Masses are sung aloud in
choir or read privately in accord with
the rites and customs of the Roman Church.
This Missal is to be used by all churches,
even by those which in their authorization
are made exempt, whether by Apostolic
indult, custom, or privilege, or even
if by oath or official confirmation
of the Holy See, or have their rights
and faculties guaranteed to them by
any other manner whatsoever.
This new rite alone is to be used
unless approval of the practice of saying
Mass differently was given at the very
time of the institution and confirmation
of the church by Apostolic See at least
200 years ago, or unless there has prevailed
a custom of a similar kind which has
been continuously followed for a period
of not less than 200 years, in which
most cases We in no wise rescind their
above-mentioned prerogative or custom.
However, if this Missal, which we have
seen fit to publish, be more agreeable
to these latter, We grant them permission
to celebrate Mass according to its rite,
provided they have the consent of their
bishop or prelate or of their whole
Chapter, everything else to the contrary
All other of the churches referred to
above, however, are hereby denied the
use of other missals, which are to be
discontinued entirely and absolutely;
this present Constitution,
which will be valid henceforth, now,
We order and enjoin that nothing must
be added to Our recently published Missal,
nothing omitted from it, nor anything
whatsoever be changed within it under
the penalty of Our displeasure.
We specifically command each and every
patriarch, administrator, and all other
persons or whatever ecclesiastical dignity
they may be, be they even cardinals
of the Holy Roman Church, or possessed
of any other rank or pre-eminence, and
We order them in virtue of holy
obedience to chant or to read the Mass
according to the rite and manner and
norm herewith laid down by Us
and, hereafter, to discontinue and completely
discard all other rubrics and rites
of other missals, however ancient, which
they have customarily followed; and
they must not in celebrating Mass presume
to introduce any ceremonies or recite
any prayers other than those contained
in this Missal.
Furthermore, by these presents [this
law], in virtue of Our Apostolic authority,
We grant and concede in perpetuity that,
for the chanting or reading of the Mass
in any church whatsoever,
this Missal is hereafter to be followed
absolutely, without any scruple of conscience
or fear of incurring any penalty, judgment,
or censure, and may freely and lawfully
be used. Nor are superiors,
administrators, canons, chaplains, and
other secular priests, or religious,
of whatever title designated, obliged
to celebrate the Mass otherwise than
as enjoined by Us. We likewise declare
and ordain that no one whosoever is
forced or coerced to alter this Missal,
this present document
cannot be revoked or modified,
but remains always valid and retain
its full force
the previous constitutions and decrees
of the Holy See, as well as any general
or special constitutions or edicts of
provincial or synodal councils, and
notwithstanding the practice and custom
of the aforesaid churches, established
by long and immemorial prescription
except, however, if more than two
hundred years' standing.
It is Our will, therefore, and by the
same authority, We decree that, after
We publish this constitution and the
edition of the Missal, the priests of
the Roman Curia are, after thirty days,
obliged to chant or read the Mass according
to it; all others south of the Alps,
after three months; and those beyond
the Alps either within six months or
whenever the Missal is available for
sale. Wherefore, in order that
the Missal be preserved incorrupt throughout
the whole world and kept free of flaws
and errors, the penalty for
nonobservance for printers, whether
mediately or immediately subject to
Our dominion, and that of the Holy Roman
Church, will be the forfeiting of their
books and a fine of one hundred gold
ducats, payable ipso facto to the Apostolic
Treasury. Further, as for those located
in other parts of the world, the penalty
is excommunication latae sententiae,
and such other penalties as may in Our
judgment be imposed; and We decree by
this law that they must not dare or
presume either to print or to publish
or to sell, or in any way to accept
books of this nature without Our approval
and consent, or without the express
consent of the Apostolic Commissaries
of those places, who will be appointed
by Us. Said printer must receive a standard
Missal and agree faithfully with it
and in no wise vary from the Roman Missal
of the large type (secundum magnum
Accordingly, since it would be difficult
for this present pronouncement to be
sent to all parts of the Christian world
and simultaneously come to light everywhere,
We direct that it be, as usual, posted
and published at the doors of the Basilica
of the Prince of the Apostles, also
at the Apostolic Chancery, and on the
street at Campo Flora; furthermore,
We direct that printed copies of this
same edict signed by a notary public
and made official by an ecclesiastical
dignitary possess the same indubitable
validity everywhere and in every nation,
as if Our manuscript were shown there.
Therefore, no one whosoever
is permitted to alter this notice of
Our permission, statute, ordinance,
command, precept, grant, indult, declaration,
will, decree, and prohibition. Should
anyone dare to contravene it, know that
he will incur the wrath of Almighty
God and of the Blessed Apostles Peter
Given at St. Peters
in the year of the Lord's Incarnation,
1570, on the 14th of July of the Fifth
year of Our Pontificate.
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