ELEISON COMMENTS DCCCXXI (April 8, 2023) : C H A R I T Y !
Dear Readers, you or I may be the greatest of Restradcats (“Resistant” Traditional Catholics), but if we have no true charity towards our fellow-men, then in the words of St Paul, “we may have all faith so as to move mountains”, but without charity we are a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal… we are nothing…” (I Cor. XIII, 1-3) – dear friends, do you by chance come across any gongs or cymbals on the Internet ?
If you do, it is understandable. “Strike the shepherd that the sheep may be scattered” is a quotation from an Old Testament prophet (Zechariah XIII, 7) applied by Our Lord to His own situation in the Garden of Gethsemane (Mt. XXVI, 31), when He was so being struck by the servants of the Temple that all eleven Apostles remaining, after Judas’ betrayal, were utterly confused, and abandoned their divine Master. So if today Pope Bergoglio is struck down by the same modernism that struck his five Conciliar predecessors, that makes – 1965 to 2023 – 58 years of deep confusion at the very top of the Church. Then who can be surprised if the Catholic sheep are scattered ? Or if they turn on one another, and bite ? Is not our eternal salvation at stake ? So the temptation to turn on our neighbour and start clanging like a gong or cymbal is clear, but it must be resisted. Let us try for a moment to put ourselves in the place of Almighty God.
From eternity God knew that Adam and Eve would fall, and that mankind would only decline from then on, unless He intervened to have mercy upon them, before and after His greatest intervention of all, which was of course the Incarnation of His own Son and the foundation among men of His one true Church. That Church, He decreed, was to rise for about 500 years, the Ancient World; to triumph for about 1000 years, the Middle Ages; and then to decline over another 500 odd years, the modern world. At the end of these approximately 2000 years He decreed not another triumph of 1000 years but, as His own Son told us, the virtual disappearance of His Church – “When the Son of man comes, will He find the faith on earth ?” (Lk. XVIII 8). (We may not understand this decree of God, but that quote says what it says.)
However, how could His Church virtually disappear if it always had good Popes, bishops and priests ? Especially Popes, because He Himself built His Church on Peter (Mt. XVI, 18; Jn. XXI, 15-17). It would follow that towards the end of the world it would be God Himself who decided from eternity to allow a sequence of half a dozen (objectively) bad Popes, such as we have seen since Vatican II. These six Popes in particular have not been the fault of God but of all the human beings, especially Catholic priests, who down the ages have built up today’s worldwide apostasy, to eject the Creator from His own Creation and to take His place. However, the apostasy could never have happened without His permission. But it was God Himself who chose to make His Church depend on Peter, in which case He obviously foresaw how His own permission of defective Popes would scatter the Catholic sheep. In that case, how can He not have a special measure of understanding and mercy for them, unless they too want to get rid of Him ?
And even then, does not the Sacred Heart say, “I have compassion on the crowd” (Mk. VIII, 2) ?
In which case, following the divine example, must not “Restradcats” have all the more compassion, especially on our fellow Catholics (Gal. VI, 10) ? And let us bear in mind that many non-Catholics are being driven by the apparently insoluble problems of today’s world to be thinking of God, so that many of them may easily finish among the last that will be first, while if we ourselves do not practise charity, we could easily count among the first that will be last (Mk. X, 31). Our Lord told His Apostles that they would be recognised as His followers by the charity they would have for one another (Jn. XIII, 35). Are there not a number of Traditional Catholics presently scandalising souls by our lack of charity towards one another ? We will answer for it before the judgment seat of God, especially after the gifts we have received from Him to be keeping the Faith today.
Truth is quite indispensable, supreme !
Yes, but it’s nothing, if love be off our screen.