WHAT?! — I’m
The Argument in its Entirety:
there is a God, He is infinitely
incomprehensible, since, having neither parts
nor limits, He has no affinity to us. We are
then incapable of knowing either what He is or
if He is....
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Since the inauguration
of the Second Vatican Council
Catholics have been illicitly assured that
who dies goes immediately to Heaven
— no matter how sinful, selfish, and miserable their
evil lives. While this clearly is not true (or Christ is a liar)
we encourage you during the opening of this Holy Season of Lent
to recall that the Dies Irae was the ordinary Sequence for the
Requiem Mass for the dead for at least 800 and very likely 1200
years. It is a beautiful and sober reminder of the imminence
and inevitability of death. While Vatican II abolished
much that is good and holy, it was not able to abolish death.
The one thing most conspicuous about this magnificent Sequence is not so much what is PRESENT in its somber verses — but what is manifestly ABSENT throughout this solemn chant — the sin of Presumption — that is to say, the unwarranted presuming that God must and will absolve us of all sin — despite the absence of any penitential act on our part or any evidence of genuine sorrow for sin. “All dogs go to Heaven”.
While this may be true
of dogs, it is decidedly not true of men.
Consequently, the chant was peremptorily expunged following Vatican II in the quite sudden and eminently convenient “pastoral” realization that our now inexplicably fragile and effete sensibilities are incompatible with Holy Scripture and 2000 years of Church teaching explicated in the Dies Irae: that is further to say that the sin of Presumption was necessarily abolished together with the Dies Irae since both are construed to be inimical to “the spirit of Vatican II”, which is to say the Protestant heresy of Ecumenism first conceptualized by the “International Missionary Conference” held at Edinburgh in 1910 and subsequently institutionalized by the Protestant World Council of Churches in 1948.
In his determination to align the Catholic
Church with contemporary Protestantism Pope John XXIII (“Good
Pope John ...” of Vatican II infamy) appropriately
established a “Catholic” replica called the Secretariat
for the Promotion of Christian Unity in 1961. This,
however, required a dialectic in which all competing and
mutually contrary religions are reconcilable — and the
only possible way forward was to abolish religious
distinctions altogether, rendering them superficial only
— or failing that, to maintain that the widely divergent
roads nonetheless converged in the same Heaven — even
while the manifold and conflicting conceptions of Paradise
itself turn out to be both logically and mutually
Here we enter the province of Mortal Sin — and the grave sin of Presumption which permeates all post-Vatican II liturgies and without exception pre-eminently characterizes them. Let us, then, be clear about this deadly sin, together with the reciprocal notions of responsibility and accountability inherent within it. In Catholic theology no less than in moral philosophy a distinction is understood to exist between what are construed as logical contrarieties. Some things (acts, intentions, etc.) are good and others are not. In fact, we often define the one through its contraposition to the other. Were all human acts equally commendable and reprehensible, the world would be deprived of rational order, specifically moral order understood in terms of good and evil, meritorious and culpable, desirable and loathsome. The very notion of responsibility would be superfluous, together with any concept of accountability. Accountable to whom or what? Censurable to what standard and answerable for what? It is not simply an amoral universe of absolute indifference, but an illogical one. Such a universe would not be sustainable on earth — why would we, a fortiori, hold it to be sustainable in Heaven?
It is the presuming of God’s forgiveness of sin and His unquestionable willingness — even irrepressible determination — to bring one who has led a life of unrepentant — even vicious sin — and who without the least compunction presumes God’s forgiveness because of God’s absolute goodness and mercy: in other words, one sacrilegiously anticipates (as the rendering of a justice due the sinner by God) salvation — having done nothing to either acquire it or to repent of the many sins that are invincible impediments to it. It is, in essence, the depriving of the free will (a perfection) of God Who somehow must (is compelled — by some incoherent and inexplicable agency mysteriously superior to God — to forgive every sin and all sins — despite everything His Beloved Son taught — and bring all men, Catholics, heretics, apostates, schismatics, Muslims, Shintoists, Buddhists, Animists, Scientologists, etc. to the same blessed abode where the one who despises and curses Christ on the Cross, and the one who joyfully surrenders himself in perfect love to God, equally enjoy perfect and eternal beatitude.
We may argue that such a conception of Heaven is tantamount to a Mental “Field Hospital” (as Francis understands the Bride of Christ, the Church) or we may simply resign ourselves to the flatus of Vatican II ... observing nothing distinguishable between them.
Indeed, in the end we find that the Mental Hospital and the “Field Hospital” are one and the same.
Geoffrey K. Mondello
Boston Catholic Journal
March 2, 2020
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You have heard it at every Mass
Indeed, it is very likely that you do it yourself.
It is even more likely that you do it praying the Holy Rosary.
Let us take one very, very, common example: The Apostles Creed:
and-in-Jesus Christ-His-only-Son-Our Lord-Who-was-conceived-by-
All spoken as one sentence as quickly as possible — to get through it.
Worse still is the prayer to the very Mother of God, Mary Most Holy, ESPECIALLY as it is “recited” — rather than “prayed” in that beautiful prayer called the Angelic Salutation, but better known simply as the Hail Mary:
Within 14 seconds flat! … and ten times between each sacred Mystery!
Is that how you approach God in prayer? As fast as humanly possible?
Is that how you speak to your wife, your husband,
your children — your friends and neighbors? If so, you either
have none, and you never will!
I am not an expert in Mariology — but I am human, as Mary was and is — and even with so few credentials I cannot imagine that either God or Mary are especially impressed with my piety or devotion when I speak to them, pray to them, much like a 33 rpm record incorrectly played at either 45 rpm or 78 rpm. Try it:
The point of this
short essay is simply this: GOD IS A PERSON
— and so is Mary. I do not believe that they esteem you more
holy or are in the least impressed with the speed of your prayers,
or the number of your prayers-recited-as-in-a marathon. In fact,
Christ Himself warned us against this:
|“And when you are praying, speak not much, as the heathens. For they think that in their much speaking they may be heard. Be not you therefore like to them, for your Father knoweth what is needful for you, before you ask Him.” (Saint Matthew 6.7-8)|
Is this to derogate from formal and structured prayers such as the Holy Rosary or the litanies of the Saints? By no means! Nor is it written to diminish the piety of the one praying. No. No. No!
This is the point: when you “pray” do not make your prayer a rote “recitation” to be sped through as quickly as possible. Repetition is meaningful — or it can be useless.
Dwell on the words you pray.
Utter them in the same way as you would when sincerely talking to ANY person before you.
In fact, you ARE! You are speaking to God Most High — from your heart.
One single decade of one single Mystery of the Holy Rosary prayed to Mary, and through Mary, to the PERSON of GOD — ex corde (from the heart) in the recognition that you are addressing a real PERSON who is listening to you — exceeds all the decades of all the Rosaries recited since Mary brought this devotion to Saint Dominic in the 13th century.
The beautiful complexities latent within the Holy Rosary are many. Meditating upon a holy Mystery while simultaneously praying the Hail Mary as more than simply words accompanying our meditation is no small feat. It is — dare I say — grace; the grace of simultaneity that proximates what we glimpse of eternity.
Simply because the prayers may be many and identical
does not preclude their being uttered in absolute devotion each
time… for they extend beyond time to eternity … and are offered
in union with Mary to God Who sees the hearts and knows the
thoughts of men.
Pray — but only as sincerely as you talk!
Geoffrey K. Mondello
Boston Catholic Journal
February 12, 2020
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“It is written: I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered.” (Saint Matthew 26.31)
“I will strike
the shepherd, and
the sheep of the flock shall be scattered.”1
We have often heard this. It pertains to the imminent Passion
of Jesus Christ on the very night before He was betrayed into
the hands of sinful men. He, the Good Shepherd, would be struck
(in fact, repeatedly ...) and the Apostles, the Disciples, and
the Faithful would be scattered — they would abandon Him, flee
for their lives, and their unity in Him would be broken. Their
Shepherd, in Whose fold they were one flock, had been struck!
What the will become of the sheep? How much anxiety rends them!
But now, in some incomprehensible and ghastly apocalyptic narrative unfolding before our very eyes, the shepherd himself strikes the sheep — and they are scattered! Unfaithful to his trust and careless of the sheep entrusted to him, the shepherd not only abandons them to the wolves who have prowled the fences for 500 years … but he himself strikes them so that they are forced to leave the sheepfold; with his staff he strikes the necks and the backs of the defenseless sheep — not even sparing the Little Lambs — who cry out in their pain as they flee, seeking a fold where they will find pasture and protection. They are confused and frightened, and no other shepherd seems to have the courage to gather the lost and the scattered — not one other shepherd! Homeless and shelterless they are prey to wolves — wolves even more remorseless than the wolves who drove them from the sheepfold.
In the gathering darkness they huddle and tremble, lacerated by a betrayal too appalling to grasp. Behold a vignette of the Holy Catholic Church of this day, under the tyranny of Francis who turns out the faithful to welcome those whose gods are idols and earth. What a terrible pronouncement mutters on the horizon!
Let us not fear. We know Whom we follow even when the hireling has fled. We know the voice of the Good Shepherd — and will not follow another.
He will not abandon us.
Let nothing obscure the glory of God — let nothing come between us and the vision of unapproachable glory in the face of Christ Jesus. All that is on the earth and of the earth — will pass away as it came: like breath on wintery glass, and its pretension will come to nothing. The seat of power that evil men have taken to themselves, the desecration of sacred places and sacred things, the betrayal of innocence to things corrupt and vile, the scattering of the sheep who are struck by the shepherd and driven from pasture ... all this is known unto God ... and our littleness and powerlessness before it. For a time we must bend before this infamous wind, but we will not bow ... nor break, nor lose faith. Those that now ruthlessly tower like the cedars of Lebanon, in a time will no longer find their place among us ... nor we among them.
We will not, then, be troubled by recreant men. We are called to glory. What is the fecklessness of man before so great a calling? Let us not be troubled by those who have lost God and trampled His Vineyard. We know the voice of the Shepherd and will not follow another. It may seem that we are bound, hand and foot, like lambs delivered to those who would make a sacrifice of us to false gods, and we are anxious. Let it not be so. Christ goes before us, and we go with Christ to the Father. We need not fear. Has He not told us that none may take us from His Father’s hand?
Away, then, usurpers and liars!
We have more pressing concerns than your feeble quest for petty
power. We must to God! And we will let no one and nothing persuade
us — or drive us away — from that pledge of glory to which we
are called in Christ!
1 Saint Matthew 26.31
Geoffrey K. Mondello
Boston Catholic Journal
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of the LGBT Movement is DIABOLICAL:
Just as Satan cannot create, but only mimic, imitate, in the LGBT Movement we find his (Satan’s) effort to contrive a spurious — a completely counterfeit and totally perverse mockery — of the genuine family. It is a diabolical attempt to pass off what is a fiction for what is real — with the willing collaboration of a profoundly sexually and militantly perverse community.
But there is an impediment to this epic exploit in Western culture as it devolves into de-civilization and debauchery: the family.
As long as the nuclear family of husband, wife and children still remains intact, it is an indictment of the sterile sexual perversity that the LGBT fascists embrace and promote. It stands as an unassailable reproach to the counterfeit, for it is genuinely procreative and naturally perpetuates itself — as every other species has from the dawn of creation.
The family — one man and one woman, one husband and one wife, with children of their own flesh as the natural fruit of their marital love — exists naturally, not artificially. It is not the product of science, sociology, or legislation: indeed, without the traditional nuclear family as it has always been understood, mankind ineluctably ceases to be. It is the natural hedge against the delusional. Not all the artificial appurtenances, appendages, cosmetics, or clothing can so much as approximate this natural biological unit. However subtle science and surgery, elements of the counterfeit remain and invoke an instinctive revulsion to the artificially abnormal — it is inescapable! The most convincing robot engineered to virtually resemble a human being in every way — remains no more than that: a robot. Even if it is made by other robots, it never attains to being human. Ever.
No legislation or law that depraved man can implement or advocate to assuage the guilt of his perversity can ever be authentically internalized. However strident his social expression, however forceful the apparatus of the state, and despite every effort at pretension and dissemblance, the perverse is instinctively apperceived — and loathed.
It is a self-loathing so profound that it attempts to extinguish its own identity and become completely another. Not simply another gender, but another person — which is precisely what another gender is! It is someone apart from who one is; so much so that even the gender must be eradicated and artificially reassigned to its polar opposite. This is self-loathing.
The devil, as it is said, is not simply in the details — but in the fabrication itself! In a word, it is diabolical. The devil has no gender, and no “skin in the game.” That is why he can equally work both sides: male and female, pit them against each other, even against themselves, for whatever the aftermath, and however ugly, ultimately it is against God — and for Satan, a win! He mocks the Holy Family with the instigation of the unholy family of his fabrication: the homosexual “marriage”. Playing into our own pride that we will determine what is good and what is evil — not God — he makes us masters of our own destruction.
Oh, yes, he finally gets the last laugh, too, telling us in our smug insolence that we are not pagan gods after all — that pride is his dominion, not ours in all our pretension. We can pathetically tell him to go to Hell, but it is extremely likely that he will only politely, if mordantly, reply: “after you!”
Look carefully at this emblematic
vision of Vatican II in the Pope
Paul VI Audience Hall.
It is, for want of any other aesthetic description, demonic and blasphemous, hideous and frightening — a sign of times to come — that are now here.
Hideous — is it not?
It has not changed much — apart from its growing defection from what the Holy Catholic Church taught for 2000 years before that most pernicious council.
It is increasingly elderly, gray, and disheveled. Its children — fewer and fewer every year — are largely the children of the world, checking off the boxes branded on their young minds by a perverse generation that has lost its Catholic Faith and Identity: for Abortion (yes), Homosexuality (yes), Lesbianism (yes), Transgenderism (yes), Gender Identity Choices (yes), Gender Re-assignment (yes), Euthanasia (yes), Cremation (yes), Pre-Marital Sex (yes), Co-Habitation (yes), “Social Justice” Issues (yes!) — the proper formation of a Catholic Conscience (NO!), Chastity (NO!) Virginity until Marriage (NO!) Sanctity (NO), learning the most fundamental aspects of the Catholic Religion into which they were summarily Baptized (NO!) the Priesthood (NO!), Religious Life (NO!) — Missionary zeal and the conversion of sinners and those who do not know Christ — which Francis (perhaps heretically) calls “solemn nonsense.” (NO!) When they look about them at their fellow “Catholics” and” Priests”, “Nuns” and “Religious” — even the papacy of Francis and the current Episcopacy (bishops and cardinals) — who can blame them? The Faith is not even authentically lived out by the highest prelates — and sadly enough by Francis himself who gives scandal on a routine basis.
A Lie too Big to Possibly Refute?
They would tell us that our conception of the Holy Catholic Church prior to Vatican II is naïve and simplistic — that it has no correspondence with reality and never did. Revisionist history, however, has become an ideology — an iconoclastic tool for suppressing what is not consistent with prevailing values in academia: principal among which is that absolutely nothing in the past was really as it had been taught us. We have all been deceived. All academics and historians preceding the present Ideological Revisionists were not scholars at all; they were biased, mendacious, and inept, with a vested interest in perpetuating myths and lies — although this vested interest is never explained, and cannot possibly be without indicting the present generation of Historical Ideologues as well. Indeed, we no longer have historians at all, but an ideological cadre of iconoclastic “historiographers”, ready to discredit any actually contemporary description of history as it was lived by those contemporaneous with it. It is, after all, their “job”, their income, to discredit anything that had been held as true and authentic. This is what any good “historiographer” does: he speculates upon the most exiguous and often specious evidence to disprove that what actually was ... actually was not what it actually was. The “good guys” become the “villains”, and the “villains” the “good guys”.
Catholicism became “imperialistic” when it abolished human sacrifice in the Aztec ... “faith community” ... as it would now be called. “Let them do their own thing without imposing your colonial values on others!” As Francis might say, they lived “closer to the earth” … and were, eo ipso, better than other cultures that valued women, children and human life several feet above it. Ripping the still-beating hearts of its victims and then hurling them down the temple made of thousands of human skulls to appease the pagan god Huitzilopochtli 1 is more acceptable by far, you understand, than the preaching of the Gospel of Jesus Christ — especially the Sermon on the Mount. It was foreign to their “culture” after all …
To return to our contention, we must ask, was the Catholic Church prior to its paganization subsequent to Vatican II really a better Church, a holier Church? Was the Faith really taken very seriously? Did it actually produce saints? Was it unsparing in apostolic zeal, in the formation of holy priests, missionaries, nuns, and Religious sisters? Absolutely! Unquestionably! By any metric it flourished and was flourishing — until the convocation of Second Vatican Council ...
It is not the case that the Church
quite suddenly attained to the apex of her mission
and mandate in 1960 and was ready to usher in the
Parousia — after which its religious and moral decline
was inevitable. It was thriving! Whence,
then, the extraordinarily serious
measure of convoking a council in 1962 (given that
the 17th century Cardinal Pallavicini — the
noted historian of the Council of Trent
itself — had famously warned that to propose
to convoke any General Council, except
through direst necessity, is to tempt God
There was, however, an excruciating question in the mind of Angelo Giuseppe Roncalli (John XXIII): a question never quite settled; and it was a question, a doubt, that relentlessly tormented him: was the “inspiration” to convoke a council, which he had experienced— divine or diabolical? Very clearly, as we had noted, there was no dire necessity in 1962. The Church was thriving in Her members, Her seminaries, in Her Religious and Missionary Orders, and consequently in conversions to the Holy Catholic Faith. Whatever manic episode, or turgid epiphany “inspired” Roncalli to move beyond the excruciating doubt that afflicted him (that is to say, as to whether the impetus that motivated him was divine or diabolical) — by the Age of Aquarius, John XXIII, infatuated with the world, rashly and needlessly convoked a Council to deal with a problem that did not exist until he created it.
We invite you to view a vignette of the Holy Catholic Church as it really was — and is no longer. The pictures indeed speak more than any words: http://www.boston-catholic-journal.com/the-real-legacy-of-vatican-II-a-renewal-that-became-a-requiem-the-death-of-two-monasteries.htm. And, while I think of it, Vatican II as the Model of the Failed Corporation: http://www.boston-catholic-journal.com/vatican-ii-the-model-of-the-failed-corporation.htm
We also invite you to return to the image at the top of this page — to the time when the poisons called Modernism and Ecumenism were first injected into the Body of Christ — and to behold a prophetic vision of what it would become. It is frightening. All that is counterfeit and ugly always is.
2 History of the Council of Trent, by Cardinal Francesco Maria Sforza Pallavicini, translated to Latin by Fr. Giattini, SJ (Antwerp, 1670)
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Tuesday April 7th in the Year of Grace 2020
And elsewhere in divers places, many other holy martyrs, confessors,
and holy virgins.
Response: Thanks be to God.
V2 = Enrolled prior to Vatican II and deleted after Vatican II
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 than denial?
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 do not?
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.
“Exemplum enim 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.
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 its “Legions of Honor”, 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? “Thy friends, O Lord, are exceedingly honored; their principality is exceedingly exalted.” Whom 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 utterances.
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 conversion “If 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!
Imprimatur, J. Cardinal Gibbons, Archbishop Baltimore, Maryland 1916
Printable PDF Version
(and what “Forever” really means)
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 and proper — 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 — We deemed 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 forever, 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 notwithstanding.
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; whereas, by this present Constitution, which will be valid henceforth, now, and forever, 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, and that this present document cannot be revoked or modified, but remains always valid and retain its full force notwithstanding 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 impressionem).
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 and Paul.”
Given at St. Peter’s 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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Saint Pius X
spare myself neither care nor labor nor vigils for