Category Archives: Article

The Resignation of cardinal Sarah

Robert Sarah is a name virtually everyone who describes themselves as a traditionalist catholic knows. In a world where almost every headline relating to the church hierarchy is either about corruption or clergy sanctioning some sin under the banner of inclusivity, any article about something Sarah said was comforting. It’s exceedingly challenging to appreciate and stand by our clergy in many ways when there is constant disappointment. Time and time again, the faithful have been betrayed and suffered at the church’s hands, inflicting terrible abuses. For most, it’s an almost numbing experience to the point we are not even surprised anymore when stories come out about bishops being corrupt or covering up all sorts of sin. Too often, we focus solely on the bad as it can be addicting to discuss and criticize others’ evil. For all these reasons, we must recognize the good. Robert Sarah wasn’t just a good priest; he was a man who, despite all odds, became a cardinal and fought harder than anyone in the Vatican for tradition. Its no secret that the Vatican has been struggling with corruption, both internal, and its effects can be seen externally. Nowhere is this more present than in the modernization of teaching liturgy and even aesthetics. One doesn’t need to look farther than the Vatican’s nativity set from this year to understand modernism has a stronghold over much of the clergy.

The Vaticans 2020 Nativity Set

So for a traditionalist outsider to thrive in such an environment is truly a miracle. Cardinal Sarah has been an outspoken critic of evil even when it threatened his life, as seen when he was first inducted into the priesthood. He was an outspoken critic of Ahmed Sékou Touré, an Islamic dictator who ruled Guinea’s nation where Sarah resided as archbishop. Sarah was appointed cardinal in 2010 by Benedict and would go on to speak out against the utter disregard for tradition with the Vatican. For most traditionalists, Sarah represented hope for very few cardinals who are as outspoken as he is when speaking against the errors of the modern world.

Robert Sarah

Although his resignation seems to be a reason to despair, hope remains. The generation that Sarah was a part of is infamous for its modernist influences and corruption. If we can have a cardinal as good as Sarah come out from that generation, imagine how things could be with the youth of this generation aspiring to traditionalism as many are already. This is why it is so vital for Catholics not to stand idly by while things spiral out of control. Cardinal Sarah’s resignation should be another reason we all need to be doing our best to live our lives according to Christ to convert others. No matter the damage that has been done, the church has something no other institution has, and all we need is a single generation of good clergy to return it to its former glory. So if any of you are struggling to see how things can improve with Sarah gone, I leave this Tolkein quote

“It’s like in the great stories, Mr. Frodo. The ones that really mattered. Full of darkness and danger they were. And sometimes you didn’t want to know the end. Because how could the end be happy? How could the world go back to the way it was when so much bad had happened? But in the end, it’s only a passing thing, this shadow. Even darkness must pass. A new day will come. And when the sun shines it will shine out the clearer. Those were the stories that stayed with you. That meant something, even if you were too small to understand why. But I think, Mr. Frodo, I do understand. I know now. Folk in those stories had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn’t. They kept going, because they were holding on to something. That there is some good in this world, and it’s worth fighting for”

Why the Sacred Priesthood Needs a Sacred Language

The word sacred means “set apart” from the Latin sacer. The Latin word for priest, sacerdos, is also derived from sacer such that the word “priest” could be defined as “one set apart”. In the Old Testament, Israel was a holy nation, a nation that was set apart from other nations (Exodus 19:9). Within the sacred nation, there was also the tribe of Levi, known as Levites, who served as priests and were separated from the other tribes (Numbers 18:20-29). In the New Testament, when Christ instituted his Church upon Peter, he was not abolishing the nation of Israel, but rather, redeeming it and fulfilling its true purpose of sanctifying all nations. Thus, the Catholic Church can be seen as the true continuation of the holy nation of Israel, and her priests as the new Levites.

            Now, Catholic priests are priests of Jesus Christ, who is himself the true high priest, continually offering his sacrifice of himself on Calvary to the Heavenly Father in expiation for our sins. Jesus is the sole mediator between God and man because he alone was both God and man; however, priests at their ordination are incorporated into this mediation through the grace of God. Consequently, they become alteri Christi, or other Christs, in the world, and in their sacramental ministry, they operate in persona Christi, or in the person of Christ. After ordination, they become mediators between man and God insofar as they participate in Christ’s mediation between God and man.

            However, a priest is not always consumed in his sacramental ministry, of course. On the contrary, priests’ time is often spent on mundane activities such as grocery shopping, teaching, or meetings. In these activities, the priest is not acting in the person of Christ but in his own person. Moreover, there is a huge difference between acting in the person of our Lord Jesus Christ and as a regular human being. Due to the extreme reverence we ought to show the second person of the Blessed Trinity, it is fitting and expedient for us as forgetful humans to remind ourselves via external symbols of his invisible presence. As a result, it is fitting and expedient for the priest to visibly differentiate himself while he is in persona Christi as opposed to when he is not, and this the priest does by wearing liturgical vestments and employing reverent posture.

            Nevertheless, it would not be altogether symbolically sufficient if a priest were to only don a liturgical “uniform”, so to speak, for even in the secular sphere different occupations require different uniforms. Consequently, a priest should speak in a sacred language as well.

            A priest should speak in a sacred language during sacramental ministry, except for when communication to another person is necessary, both for his benefit and the lay person or persons he is serving. As for the priest, speaking in a sacred language engages a priest’s brain and continually reminds him that he is doing the work of God and not ordinary work. This helps him to be in a more reverent mindset during his sacramental ministry. Moreover, the sacred language has a similar effect on the laity. When the priest speaks in a sacred language, the laity understand that the priest is talking to God rather than talking to them. Also, when a priest uses a sacred language, it signals to the faithful that they are in a sacred place, that they are in a place set apart from the outside world. With the use of a sacred language, not only is the priest better able to differentiate between his sacred and ordinary work but the laity is also better able to discern to whom the priest is talking and the sacredness of what is taking place.

            Ultimately, the language used in the liturgy or sacraments should serve as a type of divider between the sacred and the “profane”, or ordinary. The priest should speak in a sacred language as often as possible when speaking to the Holy of Holies and the vernacular dialect when speaking to ordinary men. Just as the outer garments of the priest are changed when he performs his sacramental duties so should his mode of speaking, and perhaps even more so. Moreover, if we truly believe that the priest acts in persona Christi during his sacramental ministry, shouldn’t he do as much as reasonably posssible to represent this incredible albeit invisible reality symbolically? And what external symbol could more clearly remind us that we are not in an ordinary place or, in the case of the priest, performing an ordinary task, than language?

Refuting Fallacies in the Coronavirus Debacle

To be against masks, anti-infection measures, and ultimately the vaccine lends several Neoconservative-inclined people ammunition to begin a new round of strawman and ad hominem attacks. Accusations of being anti-vaxxers, being spoiled Christians who can’t be like Middle-Easterners trying to survive for Mass, being opponents of rational science, such has been the drive of ever so charitable brethren. Of course, fallacies are houses built on sand; take away the foundational assumptions and the whole structure comes crashing down.

The need for a vaccine
Despite what American media likes to depict, the drug hydroxychloroquine has proven time and again to be effective in combating early stages of the virus. Combining this dose with zinc shows greater benefit. A certain study last May of 2020, alleging that the drug increased fatalities, has been retracted out of its pitifully obvious shoddy design. Said study, unfortunately published in reputable journal Lancet, used unproven Machine Learning methods as a substitute for double-blind testing. To do so in such a sensitive situation reeks of poor academic integrity and ethics. These methods had failed to receive proper fine tuning, failed to undergo tests comparing it double-blind testing, and failed to be used by trained and/or experienced Statisticians, instead having medical professionals whose training and knowledge probably limits them to being a Chinese room for illness and drug. A vaccine is unnecessary not because of some global conspiracy, although the sheer idiocy governments worldwide display leads to these accusations, but because of practicality and efficiency. One could check this website for a summary of all relevant rigorous studies.

Stringent hygiene measures
Governments’ sudden crackdown on unhygienic practices surprises one considering how proper sanitation could have prevented several deaths from several other illnesses. Colder parts of East Asian countries see many wearing masks during flu season, despite only masks equal to N95 grade and above could hope to prevent infection. One could look back at a volcanic eruption in the Philippines last January and see how the government there still had a bit of sense in its policies, warning against surgical and other lower-grade masks failing to stop ash particles from getting in. One could look at studies and tests showing how sneezing into one’s shoulder works better than using a handkerchief, pathogens escaping with similar ease for lower-grade masks. However, simply wearing a mask without regard to its type suddenly becomes a social norm. Being afraid of germs is one thing; taking a worldwide pandemic to overcompensate for past inaction is another. Being subjected to pathogens at young ages increases immunity and resistance. The extreme helicopter parenting and overpreference for sheltering and protection in cities, especially in the decadent Philippine capital shows how institutional the pandemic problem is. Basic hygiene is supposed to be enough against everything. Over or under-compensating never brings good results. Witness the black death and its spread in bathhouses, which by then had devolved into filthy brothels. A golden mean triumphs over all.

Prelude to Persecution
To equate over-exaggerated government reactions to terrorist activity in Islamic countries is one thing. To think that the former deserves no less criticism than the latter is another. In fact, one may give the latter much more criticism for the educated and wealthy fill governments’ ranks. Terrorists and anti-Christian rebels may possess higher education, but no one can say that they remain in rational use of faculties. To prevent public worship and action while having poor understanding of the pandemic’s real nature and the existence of resources that can stop the latter is sheer incompetence at best and sheer malice at worst.

Discourse about the pandemic and its many effects requires rational, logical argumentation and reasoning. Reason, loamy soil to the mustard seed of Faith, comes from God and has God has its final end. We would all be better to use it well in our journeys down the narrow path.

Charity Criticism and the Catechism

If you have ever engaged in an online debate forum, whether it be catholic or otherwise, you have undoubtedly heard someone bring up charity concerning how we must conduct ourselves towards others. Some argue that charity is often a crutch people will use to escape the substance of controversial issues in debates. In contrast, some also argue that there is a great lack of charity present, especially regarding issues that affect people personally. It’s challenging to figure out where the line actually is and let pride or our own personal bias get in the way of discernment. Therefore, it is crucially important that we as Catholics understand where the line is and how it can be applied, especially in the context of modern day online debates which have become so prevalent. At the end of the day, our goals as Catholics are to bring ourselves and as many other people to heaven as we can. Thus, we must know and understand how to debate properly and in the right manner.

When it comes to arguments, there are two important considerations.

Firstly is the substance of the argument.

The substance of the argument is essentially what you are arguing or the basis from which you conclude. For example, if you were to defend church teaching on abortion, the substance of your argument would be that life begins at conception; therefore, abortion is ending an innocent life, making it immoral. This makes certain topics extremely easy to resolve on the substance level. When it comes to the most controversial issues, church teaching is crystal clear and leaves no room for debate. St.Paul characterizes charity as “it does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right.” (CCC 1825) In other words, when it comes to church teaching, it can never be wrong to defend objective moral truth. Simple stating the truth can never conflict with charity as charity must be oriented towards the good. As St.Pope Pius X so aptly puts it, “Whilst Jesus was kind to sinners and to those who went astray, He did not respect their false ideas, however sincere they might have appeared. He loved them all, but He instructed them to convert them and save them.” So, what about the grey area? What about topics where church teaching leaves open the possibility for theological opinion? Sometimes the Catechism does not spell out exactly what the correct belief is on a particular issue. In these situations, one must tread carefully and above all look to tradition and the saints for guidance. As a general rule, if you argue for something that no saint or pope has ever supported, it’s probably a sign that there is little to no basis in the argument. Like all issues, our pursuit of the truth must be out of a desire for the good. Pride or vanity must play no part in your desire to convince people; otherwise, it is doomed to be tainted. “The practice of all the virtues is animated and inspired by charity, which “binds everything together in perfect harmony”;105 it is the form of the virtues; it articulates and orders them among themselves; it is the source and the goal of their Christian practice. Charity upholds and purifies our human ability to love, and raises it to the supernatural perfection of divine love.” (CCC 1827)

Secondly is the manner or form in which you conduct the arguments.

Here is where lots of things get tricky as oftentimes, and especially online, we don’t know other people’s experiences and relationships with a particular issue. In the modern world, where many are so passionately invested in what they believe is virtually impossible to avoid emotional interference in argumentation. This makes it extremely important to go about yourself in the right way to receive a broader audience. This does not mean that you twist church teaching to make everyone feel more comfortable with their offenses. As stated above, we can never compromise when it comes to church teaching. It means that our tone and wording can be fundamental in convincing those who otherwise would be completely turned off to church teaching. Nowhere is this more evident than on the topic of human sexuality. In a world where many are so enslaved to their passions, it seems virtually impossible to convince certain groups. In moments like these, we must remember that the “love” we must show to others isn’t a secular love based on pleasure that our bodies feel but rather a love of Christ and all the good that God has given us. Love is not something left to be interpreted by our culture or the times but rather through the divinely revealed law. “Fruit of the Spirit and fullness of the Law, charity keeps the commandments of God and his Christ: Abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love.” (CCC 1824) It is equally imperative that we recognize the innate human dignity of each person. To treat each person like a robot that you plug arguments into does yourself a disservice as we must take personal experience into account if we are to convince people. For example, if you overheard a young man speaking negatively about Catholicism and know he was a victim of sexual abuse at a priest’s hands, your approach should differ from if you know that not to be the case. Personal experience and especially traumatic experiences, shape the way people view issues. We must consider when we are debating whether it be typing out a comment on Facebook or talking with a close family member. Our manor oftentimes is just as important as the substance with regards to whether we can convince others.

Charity and the truth always go hand in hand. One cannot twist the truth and be charitable, and one cannot properly defend the truth while being uncharitable. We as Catholics must always strive to bring the truth of Christ to others but to do so, we must make sure our intentions are rightly ordered, and we argue for the right reasons. “And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.” – Mark 16:15

Yours in Christ

Deus Fideles

Short Reflection on the feast of Christ the King

Always remember that Jesus is alive, and He sees everything. “And he hath on his garment, and on his
thigh written: KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS” (Rev. 19:16). If we are so fortunate as to die in a
state of grace, how wonderful will that day be when Jesus comes in glory to be the Judge of the living
and the dead. And on that glorious day, Our Lord will kill the Antichrist “with the breath of his mouth” (2
Thes. 2:8).

Oh how deceived the poor Satanists are in their slogan: “It is better to reign in hell than to serve in
heaven”! There is no reigning in hell. Only the saints will reign with Christ for all eternity, and Christ the
King will render to each according to their works.
St. Alphonsus Liguori: “O my Savior, my God, what sentence shall I receive on that day? If, O my Jesus,
You now demanded an account of my life, what could I say to Thee?”
“Watch ye, therefore, praying at all times, that you may be accounted worthy to escape all these things
that are to come, and to stand before the Son of man” (Lk 21:36).