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On January 26, 2009 it was announced in a decree mandated by Benedict XVI that the excommunication of the bishops consecrated by His Grace Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre on June 30, 1988, declared in a decree dated July 1, 1988 by the Congregation for Bishops, has been withdrawn. Read "Pope Repeals Excommunications of Society of St. Pius X Bishops" now.
The year just ended must surely go down in history as a year full of shocking and disheartening news, a year that we are glad to see ended.
Wars raged in the Middle East, which the Bible tells us will be the site of the Armageddon. The economies of every major country in the world were rocked by credit and banking crises, and we are now officially in a recession which could deepen into a depression not seen since the Dirty Thirties.
And — once again this year — millions of lives have been lost and apparently millions of souls have gone to hell because the Pope and Catholic bishops still have not obeyed the command of Our Lady of Fatima to consecrate Russia to Her Immaculate Heart. And because not enough priests and lay persons are praying and sacrificing for this intention.
Where has the Church been in all this? You will search in vain through the media archives for the past year to find even one significant news story featuring a successful intervention by the Vatican to avert the economic, political and moral collapse with which the entire world is faced. And yet it could turn the whole crisis around — by simply fulfilling the Fatima request for the Consecration of Russia.
The Pope — once thought rightly so by all Catholics to be the most powerful man on earth — has been unable to say or do almost anything to make the world a better place. It would seem no one listens to the Holy Father any more. The world is rushing headlong to the brink of destruction, including the annihilation of nations of which Our Lady of Fatima warned, and the Pope still does not do the one simple thing which will save the Church and humanity.
Read the text of our flyer, distributed during the synod, Imploring the Holy Father to Take Action. (You will need Adobe Acrobat to view this .pdf file.)
Understand the economic meltdown. Read "The Crash of 2008: An Economic Update", interview with Dr. Peter Chojnowski in Catholic Family News.
What is Pope Benedict XVI thinking? What is his real agenda? Click here to listen to a 30-minute interview with John Vennari on "The Oath Against Modernism vs. the Hermeneutic of Continuity". (You will need to be able to download and play MP3 files to hear this.)
Readers may not be aware that we are a little more than half-way through the Pauline Year of 2008-9. Plans for this year of tribute to St. Paul were announced with great fanfare a year ago. It was to be "ecumenical and full of cultural events". (What? No religious events?) The "celebration" was to focus on "rediscovering the person of St. Paul and his teachings, improving unity amongst Christians and pilgrimages to places associated with his life."
Somewhere along the line the Vatican decided this Pauline year would be an opportune time to get some of the leading Cardinals and bishops together in Rome for a synod. Then they had to come up with an agenda, something for the bishops to do or at least discuss. There was speculation that the Pope might, at last, put the Message of Fatima (hopefully including the vital part of the Third Secret which has not yet been released) before the assemblage, and perhaps even do the Consecration of Russia as the Blessed Virgin asked.
But no. The synod's theme was to be "The Word of God in the life and mission of the Church". — Was it not just a glorified Bible study? Because, of course, the synod was "ecumenical", with not only Protestants but also Muslim and Jewish scholars participating since they all represent "religions of the book". This conveniently ignores the fact that the books which are central to Islam, Judaism and the Protestant sects are not the book — the Holy Bible — which was compiled, authenticated and preserved by the Catholic Church over the centuries.
Anyway, the learned theologians and scholars got together and talked, and what happened? The mountain labored mightily and brought forth a mouse! The delegates submitted to the Holy Father 55 "final proposals". It is expected — or hoped — that the Pope will incorporate them into a "post-synodal exhortation" which he will promulgate sometime this year...or maybe later.
At the end of the synod, a message was addressed to the "people of God" (let no one feel excluded or discriminated against!) which was forgotten almost before the ink was dry on the paper. The main part of the message was written by Archbishop Gianfranco Ravasi, president of the Pontifical Council for Culture (sic). Unfortunately, its excessive length and turgid style prevented it from being read, let alone reflected on by any but a few bishops, priests, and faithful.
However, one significant event took place in Rome in the last week of October. The Fatima Center, led by Father Nicholas Gruner, mounted "Target: Rome", an intensive media campaign to bring the urgent Message of Our Lady of Fatima to the gates of the Vatican. Follow the links on The Fatima Network's Target: Rome page for details.
The Fatima Center has just released issue No. 90 of The Fatima Crusader — a special report on Target: Rome, including news of a blessing by one of the most senior prelates of the Church. To get your copy, click on this link or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
2008 was a bad year for the Roman Catholic Church in the USA too. The past summer brought disturbing news in a study from the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life. Its survey of the beliefs and practices of US Catholics found that fully one-third of "cradle Catholics" were so disgusted by what has happened in the Church since Vatican II — particularly the Novus Ordo Mass — that they have "voted with their feet". That is, they have walked out of the Church and no longer practice the Catholic Faith.
Of course that doesn't mean they can no longer call themselves Catholics. Once you are baptized Catholic, you remain Catholic. But there are other words and terms that could be applied to those who have turned their back on the Faith — words like "lapsed" and "apostate".
Here are some shocking and saddening statistics from the "Beliefs and Practices" section of Pew's U.S. Religious Landscape Survey:
A famous scene from the movie Network portrays newscaster Howard Beale, fed up with institutional crime and corruption, throwing open a window and crying out to the world:
This could well be the anguished cry of traditional Catholics who believe that statistics like those in the Pew survey prove that, even amongst those who call themselves Catholics, the Church has lost its moral authority and, more broadly, lost its way. Our Church has been dragged down and our Faith has been dragged down. How much longer will we take it?!
It is high time that we get up on our hind feet and demand a return to the Faith of our fathers. Only Our Lady can help us! Let us work and pray harder than ever before for the Triumph of Her Immaculate Heart, so that the whole Church may once again embrace the True Faith and take up its proper position in our hearts, our minds, and our world.
Father Nicholas Gruner talks about "a spiritual crisis without precedent" in a letter to friends of Our Lady.
Christopher Ferrara catalogs the collection of modernist propositions, liturgical aberrations and disciplinary lapses that counterfeit the True Faith in his excellent book, EWTN: A Network Gone Wrong, available from the Fatima Shoppe. Is it a good book? Read the review by Dr. Edwin Faust.
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Saint Stalin? - A new manual issued to the country's history teachers says Stalin acted rationally. It is proposed that the Russian Orthodox Church declare him a saint.
Back in the U.S.S.R. - The enlightened ones stopped laughing when their enlightened opinion on the Consecration of Russia was exposed as utterly and disastrously wrong.
Keeping the Catholics Down by denying the infallible teaching of the Catholic Church that civil authority is subject to spiritual authority. Remember we must: "Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's and render to God the things that are God's."
Cardinal Tauran's Inadvertent Commentary - A sad commentary on "inter-religious dialogue" by Cardinal Tauran.
Hiding Stalin's Sins, all part of Putin's plan to resurrect Russian nationalism.
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