My dear faithful,
Under the new totalitarianism
As liberalism in our society reaches its logical development into a totalitarianism which attempts to force the Culture of Death upon all within its sphere of power, faithful Catholics now find themselves in the direct line of fire for their belief in revealed truth, truth knowable by reason and even truth knowable by simple apprehension.
The evident truth that a baby before it is born is the same being as after it is born, that a boy is a boy by nature – not by a social construct, that men and women are not equal, that there is a natural law of behaviour – a natural right and wrong, these are all denied by the new ideology.
Killing a baby before it is born is called “reproductive healthcare”, pushing a boy into a zone where the suicide rate is 40% by making him doubt whether he is a boy and by feeding him puberty blockers is called “gender sensitivity”, encouraging school children to be promiscuous is called “relationship studies”, denying the natural law is called liberation.
The official hierarchy of the Church, after 50 years of compromise and capitulation, now appears to be a willing agent of this extreme ideology, so that, far from defending faithful Catholics, they are hacking holes in the Barque of Peter which is the only chance of their salvation. The list of ongoing scandals in doctrine, liturgy and morals is too long to recount here and it is getting longer. The Synod of Bishops for the Pan-Amazon Region of October of this year will no-doubt be another high-water mark in the sinking boat, but it will soon be surpassed.
So how can we remain Catholic when all the world, and even our shepherds, appear to militate against this?
Submit to legitimate authority
With the shepherds indisposed, as Catholics, we need to submit to a legitimate authority to practice our faith. Such is the constitution of the Church - no Catholic is sufficient to himself. The Society of St. Pius X was originally founded to train priests but it has subsequently been forced into the role of an emergency hierarchy – not in opposition to the official hierarchy, but filling the gaps where the official hierarchy is morally absent. In practical terms, this means that those who attend a Society Mass Centre should see the priest who has charge of the Mass Centre their parish priest. He has an authority which binds under sin when properly exercised. The idea that the crisis in the Church liberates the faithful from ecclesiastical authority is pure liberalism!
Order in our spiritual lives is another foundation that must be strengthened. Prayer - both public and private, both vocal and mental - with frequentation of the sacraments, with scripture and spiritual reading, and with mortification to make reparation for sin and strengthen the dominion of the will over our wayward passions, these are the essential elements of the spiritual life. None of this revolutionary; it was ever thus.
Relations with our neighbour
And then, as we are social beings, it is necessary that we put order into our social life too. This means analysing our relations with our family, our parish, the various communities of which we are members, our workplace and with the world at large.
In our relations with our neighbour, naturally we should do good and avoid evil. We should exercise virtue for the common good and recoil from all danger of sin both directly and by cooperation. The danger of sin by cooperation is one that merits greater attention. The world around us, imbued with the Culture of Death, wants us to burn incense at its altars and will contrive to trap souls into compromise even if it be a single grain of incense burned, nay, even the simulation of burning a grain would suffice (cf. Eleazar of 2 Macc 6).
To resist this pressure, we have recourse to the virtue of prudence which is defined as the habit of right-reasoning in things-to-be-done. It is an intellectual virtue by which we make the right decisions to attain natural perfection. With sanctifying grace, our supernaturalised nature is infused with the supernatural virtue of prudence too by which we will make the right decisions in view of our supernatural perfection.
In concrete terms, prudence – both natural and supernatural – will tell us when we should retreat from the world, when we should co-exist with it and when we should try to change it.
Retreating means cleansing the home of the Culture of Death – Hollywood and the BBC are good place to start. It means limiting the use of social media: avoid the ranting bloggers who sow discord; we should read the encyclicals and Doctors of the Church rather than the internet theologians. We should also retreat form the world by going on retreat!
Retreating means leaving behind those pastimes and friends who lead us away from God or hinder the execution of our religious duties. It means leaving an employer who forces you to cooperate in sin. It may even mean emigrating to be closer to the sacraments, Catholic schools and parish life.
Prudence may well direct us to co-exist with evil. For example, we must always keep the door open for an errant child or sibling in the hope that our fraternal charity might be the occasion of the grace of conversion. We must not chase away the newcomer in the chapel who is unaware of the rules of comportment before the Blessed Sacrament. We must be nice to the couple next door who are living in sin – assuming that they are in ignorance of their sin. Providence will give us the chance to be instrumental in their conversion in His own time.
In the workplace, we should not look to make a scene every time our sensibilities are offended. If you have a family to support and it would be difficult to find another job, then it behoves that you stay under the radar for as long as you can avoid cooperating in sin.
As soldiers of Christ, supernatural prudence will give us our marching orders too. We must labour unceasingly for the restoration of Christendom – the reign of Christ the King in our families by the family rosary and by living the liturgical calendar, in our parishes by giving time to the parish in its daily life and in Catholic Action, in our communities by being the light on the hilltop, and in the state by championing the teaching of Christ among the lawmakers and governors.
The bugle call to the banner of Christ the King was the leitmotif of our venerable founder, Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre. It would be as well therefore, to finish this editorial with the last few words of his book, They Have Uncrowned Him:
If this is how things are, understand that, in spite of everything, I am not a pessimist. The Holy Virgin will have the victory. She will triumph over the great apostasy, the fruit of Liberalism. … We have to fight more than ever for the social Reign of Our Lord Jesus Christ. In this battle, we are not alone: we have with us all the Popes until Pius XII inclusively. All of them fought Liberalism in order to deliver the Church from it. God did not grant that they succeed, but this is no reason to lay down our weapons! We have to hold on. We have to build, while the others are demolishing. The crumbled citadels have to be rebuilt, the bastions of the faith to be reconstructed: firstly the holy sacrifice of the Mass of all times, which forms saints; then our chapels, which are our true parishes; our monasteries; our large families; our enterprises faithful to the social doctrine of the Church; our politicians determined to pursue the Politics of Jesus Christ—this is the whole tissue of Christian social life, Christian customs, Christian reflexes. All this must be restored on the scale that God wants and at the time that God wills. All I know - the faith teaches us - is that Our Lord Jesus Christ must reign here below, now, and not only at the end of the world, as the Liberals would have it!
While they are destroying, we have the contentment of rebuilding. A still greater happiness is that generations of young priests are participating with zeal in this task of reconstruction of the Church for the salvation of souls.
Our Father, Thy Kingdom come! Long live Christ the King! Holy Ghost, fill the hearts of Thy faithful! O Mary, be our Queen, we belong to Thee!
In Jesu et Maria,
Rev. Robert Brucciani
As from 15th August, Ireland has been joined to the District of Great Britain once again. We welcome our confrères, Rev. Fr. Leo Boyle, Rev. Fr. Patrick Abbet, Rev. Fr. Francis Gallagher, Rev. Fr. Marcel Ockerse and Rev. Fr. Patrick Kimball. We also welcome five seminarians who make Ireland the most fruitful apostolate for vocations of any in the world: they have a ratio of priests to seminarians of 1:1! (GB’s ratio is 7:2 – we have 4 seminarians). Please pray for them and pray that more young men follow the call.
From the chronicle section of this newsletter, you will see that the last two months have been a whirlwind of activity. The greatest joy was afforded by the ordination of Rev. Fr. Rupert Bevan at the Seminary of St. Pius X, Ecône on 28th June. Not long after, his sister, Sr. Philomena (Bridget Bevan), pronounced her first vows for the Dominican Teaching Sisters of St. Pré. On same day, Sr. Anne of Jesus (Molly Kane) also pronounced her first vows for the Teaching Sisters of Fanjeaux. Deo gratias.
While at St. Pré, Mother General of the Dominican Teaching Sisters asked me to encourage as many English families as possible to send girls to their schools. In order to facilitate this, English literature and history lessons are included in the curriculum (at least at Le Herie) and the sisters have undertaken to look after the girls on exeat weekends. Sr. Mary-Gabriel would be delighted to help. She may be contacted (in English) at Cours Notre Dame des Victoires, 18 rue de Château, 02120 Le Herie-le Vieville, France (+33 3 23 61 00 83).
Please note the following opportunities to join others in prayers outside abortion clinics or hospitals where abortions take place:
- London: 1st & 3rd Saturdays 12noon to 2pm opposite Ealing Town Hall W5 5AL: next meeting 7th September
- Bristol / Bath: usually last Thursday of the month 10:30am outside the abortion clinics of Bristol or Bath. Ring Christopher Nixon for details: 01373 834 639
- Leicester: 13th of each month 7pm, Kensington Building, Leicester Royal Infirmary, LE1 5WW.