May 2005 - District Superior's Letter
John Paul II is dead and has been judged by Our Lord Jesus Christ. Those imbued with an ungodly and worldly spirit praise him as John Paul the Great. Let us face the fact that his pontificate was a series of scandals and overall a disaster. Cardinal Ratzinger is now Pope Benedict XVI; we can be cautiously optimistic for the future.
John Paul II dies and meets his judge; the world praises John Paul the great
The passage of Pope John Paul II certainly offers much cause for reflection. First, the general consensus of the world is not a good omen. It is nothing but praise from the likes of politicians, religious leaders of all faiths; from Shimon Peres to Fidel Castro and Mikhail Gorbachev to the Dalai Lama. He is already referred to as “John Paul the great”. When CBS praises you it is not a good sign. He is already canonized. I ask: then who is praying for him?
John Paul II defended morals without defending doctrine
Certainly John Paul II stood against the “culture of death” and its manifestations: contraception, abortion and euthanasia. He defended the Church’s moral teaching on homosexuality, and same-sex marriages. But so do the Baptists!
But with regards to the faith, his pontificate was a disaster which brought in the relativism (cardinal Ratzinger complained about) as well as religious indifferentism and abandonment. It will certainly be judged differently 20 years from now or when Tradition finds again its place in Rome. We must not lose sight that he presided over 26 years of “silent apostasy”, which is corroborated by John Paul II himself. The term “silent apostasy” is his.
Consider the massive loss of faith caused by his countless scandals
Recently a study done in Britain found that pews are emptying because Christianity is no longer preached. Surprise! Surprise! Need we wonder why church pews are empty? There was no need to make a long investigation. When the only thing the faithful have been hearing in the last 26 years is about the goodness of other religions, the rights of man, the dignity of the human person. When they see the Pope calling all the “religious” leaders, not once but twice, at Assisi to “pray” for peace, when they see him kissing the Koran, being marked by the Hindu tilac, visiting the Jewish synagogue, the Lutheran temple, is it a wonder Catholics are confused and abandon the true faith? When they see, even at papal masses, the scandalous and sacrilegious liturgies: communion in the hand, liturgical dances etc.; when they see in their parishes altar girls, priestless liturgies, some even presided over by nuns, is it a wonder they lose reverence for the Blessed Sacrament and everything sacred? Any wonder we see a Host offered for sale on ebay? Then there is the scandal of “Catholic divorce,” i.e. the annulments. And of course the scandals of the clergy. Any wonder people lose respect for the Church? What the people need to hear preached is the majesty of God, the divinity of our Lord and his Church, about hell, about man’s duties to God, the misery of human nature without grace, the gravity of sin, the need for confession, the necessity of self-denial and sacrifice and the need to be faithful to one’s state of life despite the trials and difficulties.
When a company fails, the leader, not the employees is blamed
When a company loses money the CEO is blamed and replaced, not the employees; when a sports team fails to win, the GM and/or the coach is fired, not the players; when a diocese is in shambles all look to the bishop; when a family has problems the first place to look is the parents. The tendency is to take the easy way out and blame someone else, but the one who is at the head bears the responsibility and therefore the blame. He is the one who gives direction.
Benedict XVI, our new Pope
We have a new pope with the election of cardinal Ratzinger as Benedict XVI. It remains to be seen if Pope Ratzinger will be much different than cardinal Ratzinger. Hopefully! It is perfectly natural for Catholics to think the best of the Pope and be hopeful. But we must not get carried away, especially by media coverage. We should not be deceived by their efforts to make him appear like a “conservative”. It is very important to remember that as a young priest he was a very active and influential modernist at Vatican II. As bishop and cardinal he remained a modernist, firmly dedicated to promoting Vatican II revolution. He has said repeatedly that he has not changed his views over the years. His solution to the current crisis: the return to the “true Council”. Not seeing the cause of the problem, how can he give the solution? As cardinal he has continually tried to make us accept the new mass and Vatican II. All the seminarians who left us and went to him asking for Tradition were betrayed and redirected to the novus ordo. His past, his theology, his philosophy are not erased because he has been elected to the papacy.
What can we expect?
He will most probably bring back more dignity to the papacy. Hopefully the “rock star” image will disappear as will the outrageous Masses, the scandalous “prayer meeting” such as Assisi. Hopefully the next time he goes to Assisi it'll be to make reparation for the two previous sacrilegious “prayer meetings.”
However, he might, in order to try to divide us, make certain offers to the traditionalist. I am sure he wants a solution to the impasse. But as long as his solution is the acceptance of Vatican II and the new mass, there is no solution possible. Unless he is prepared to reject the acceptance of “the best expressed values of two centuries of liberal culture” which were brought into the Holy Church by Vatican II and unless he stops the dismantling of the bastions of the faith, no accord is possible. It is more than a matter of the Mass, it is a matter of the Faith. As Archbishop Lefebvre told him: “Eminence, even if you give us everything…we cannot work together because we are going in different directions. You are working to dechristianize society and the Church, and we are working to Christianize them.”1 Remember also that in the words of the LA Times, he is the one who “debunked” Fatima.
Let us pray for the Pope who seems to have a grasp of reality
But as reported by Zenit on May 8th while taking possession of his cathedral the pope said in his homily: "The authority to teach, in the Church, entails a commitment to the service of obedience to the faith. The Pope is not an absolute monarch, whose thought and will are law. On the contrary, the Pope's ministry is a guarantee of obedience to Christ and to his word. He must not proclaim his own ideas, but constantly bind himself and the Church to obedience to the word of God, in face of attempts to adapt and water down, as well as of all opportunism." This is all we ask for. In other words the Pope is bound by Tradition, by the deposit of the Faith. This has been the problem all along. Obedience has not been to the Faith, but to the Pope’s own ideas, to his personal opinions. If Benedict XVI is really faithful to what he said, then we will see an end to the crisis.
We can be cautiously optimistic
This is what we must pray and sacrifice for. We must be optimistic because this crisis will end one day and it will end with the return of Rome and the Pope to Tradition. Will it be this Pope? We can be cautiously optimistic, although based on his latest acts, I am becoming less optimistic.
Thank you for your continued support. As usual the monthly Mass for all our friends and benefactors is offered on the last Sunday of each month.
With continued prayers and my blessing,
Father Jean Violette
1. Marcel Lefebvre, The Biography, by Bernard Tissier de Mallerais, P.548