WJBA? In 2010 Would Jesus (Along With His Apostles & Saints) Be Arrested For Hate Speech?

Wednesday, August 4, AD 2010

A few short years ago the mere suggestion that the Son of God, His Apostles and Saints would face arrest for hate speech would have seemed absolutely ludicrous. However, events have spiraled out of control across the western world. In his opinion that strikes down California’s recently voter approved marriage law, Judge Vaughn Walker wrote that those who speak in the name of religion to put across their views that same sex marriage is wrong are “harmful to gays and lesbians.”

Across Europe and Canada, faithful Christians speaking out for traditional marriage face the threat of being hauled off to court for citing the teachings of the Catholic Church and various Evangelical Churches. Where will this all end? Some see a great persecution coming against the Christian faithful. Though possible, one need remember that the Christian faith always grew when persecuted.

The Catholic Church has long taught that some individuals have an inclination toward same sex attraction; they are to be loved as all people are to be loved. The Church teaches that these feelings are not to be acted upon. The Church goes on to teach that all individuals are given a cross to carry in this world and for those who are same sex attracted; this is their cross. An organization exists for those who are same sex attracted called COURAGE. It has many chapters and members.

Recently a profile was done in The New York Times on same sex attracted Eve Tushnet, the Ivy League educated Catholic daughter of Harvard Law professors. She has chronicled her growth in Catholicism and the logic of the Church’s teachings on sexuality. For years the Catholic Church took some heat from some quarters of Christianity for not stating that anyone who is same sex attracted would be going to hell. The Church now is facing a maelstrom of vitriol from those who claim the Church hates homosexuals.

For the Church to change her teachings would be to deny not only what Christ said (Matthew 11:20-24,) but his Apostles, not to mention Saint Paul’s lengthy discourse on the subject (Romans 1:26-28, 1 Corinthians 6:9-10.)  In addition to the Apostles and saints, there is a rich history of saints writing on the subject, particularly the Early Church Fathers like Saint Augustine, St Justin Martyr, St. Basil and St John Chrysostom as well as Church intellectuals like St Thomas Aquinas, Saint Albert the Great (the greatest scientist of his time,) along with mystics like St Catherine of Sienna to name but a few. To say that the greatest minds of their respective eras were all wrong is simply breathtaking.

Many who disagree with the Church tend to forget that homosexuality was much more common and approved of by the Roman government in the early Christian era than it is even in 2010. Many in the upper echelons of Greek and Roman culture experimented with all sorts of sexual practices. It would have been far easier for Jesus, the apostles, saints and popes to approve of this conduct than it would to disapprove of it. Christianity might have grown at a faster pace. However, there was a reason for this swimming against the tide, and the faithful accepted it.

Continue reading...

4 Responses to WJBA? In 2010 Would Jesus (Along With His Apostles & Saints) Be Arrested For Hate Speech?

  • Great column as usual, Dave. It just blows my mind that our nation is no longer a republic of, for and by the people but an elite and arrogant oligarchy that is unleashing one perverted social experiment after another on us.

    The far left have the nerve to needle the conservatives for wanting to have less government yet have government restrict marriage. Quite the contrary, we want to be able to decide how our society should function, not have the government do so.

    It’s a shame that the voters in my state of California were robbed once again, but we can still hope for the Supreme Court to save the day. In the meantime, this should serve as a wakeup call for the voters, especially those in the 45 states who have kept marriage to one man and one woman, to vote the radicals out in the fall and make sure the Democrats never control government again as long as the militant secularists who are ruining this nation continue to call the shots for the party.

  • This is almost a grand slam!

    This is government hate speech against, and injurious to, Christians, Jews and Muslims.

    Oh, that’s okay!?

    Never mind.

    Thanks for voting for them dems.

  • Prepare for the worst. There is little doubt that in the near future Christians will be arrested and imprisoned by the American Socialist State if they continue to preach the gospel and traditional morality. The American politicians have created their long desired Atheistic State which will have no tolerance for believers. Prepare for the dark days of persecution but the good news is that it will separate the wheat from the shaff and the sheep from the goats.

  • But Jesus and the Apostles were arrested and even put to death for their speech.

    When DeGaulle was reproached for not taking more care against assassination, he replied: “It comes with the job”.

Eucharistic Adoration at Angelicvm

Thursday, March 11, AD 2010

The Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas, commonly known as the Angelicum, is the Dominican university of Rome and one of the major pontifical universities of the City. Staffed and administered by members of the Order of Preachers, it serves as a focus for the Dominican theological and philosophical tradition among the Roman pontifical universities [1].

Video courtesy Rome Reports.

_._

[1] Courtesy Wikipedia.

Continue reading...

Lent 2010; The Tide Continues To Turn Toward Catholic Orthodoxy

Monday, February 22, AD 2010

As we work our way through Lent 2009, we need to rejoice in the turning tide. Though there has been much negative news about the Catholic Church this past decade, much of the negative news had its roots in actions taken during the 1960s and 1970s. Yet, the seeds of the good news planted during the pontificates of Pope John Paul II and now Pope Benedict XVI is just now seeing its shoots and blossoms become visible to the naked eye.

What are the shoots and blossoms?  They can be seen in increasing vocations to the priesthood and religious life, and the strong orthodox nature of these new, young priests. A new crop of Catholic bishops is also boldly showing their orthodoxy, which often befuddles and mystifies the mainstream media and the secular culture in which we live. In addition to this, many in the laity have for years now been writing and blogging about the desperate need for Catholic orthodoxy in a world full of hurt and self absorption. Many ask how can the Church possibly grow when the Church’s active laity, especially the young along with those who serve her in ordained and professed ministries, are so different from the culture in which they live? It is that culture in which they live that causes them to see the wisdom in Christ’s words and the Church He started through the first pope, the Apostle Saint Peter.

There were fewer shoots and blossoms in the 1970s when the seriousness of the Catholicism was questioned after the Church seemed to be trying to be relative, whether it was related or not, thousands of priests and nuns left their vocations. However, starting in 1978 with the election of Pope John Paul II, the tide began to turn. All of the Polish pontiff’s hard work began to be seen in the shoots and blossoms of events like World Youth Day 1993, which was held in Denver. Later in his pontificate thanks to events like World Youth Day, vocations to the priesthood and religious life began to increase.

Continue reading...

5 Responses to Lent 2010; The Tide Continues To Turn Toward Catholic Orthodoxy

  • Amen Dave. The Tide is indeed turning as witnessed by the young men and women who attended the Right to Life in DC The way they handled thenmselves was remarable and edifying. The young orthodox priests are proclaiming the true tenets of the Church in their homiles and many so called “cafeteria catholic” are figgeting in the pews. RCIA teacher are getting back to what Catholism is and not just trying to bring anyone into the Church. More and more orthodox Bishops are taking a stance against those that try to justify their approach to public service aand their faith, as well as those in the academia who are trying to justify their relativism in their teaching and examples.

  • I think you rightly point out that the future of the American Church is being moved by the fact that only conservative young men are becoming priests.

    But I think a clarification needs to be made between orthodox and conservative, between heterodox and liberal, and between traditional and progressive. The meanings of these words seem to change from person to person.

  • Mr. Hartman,
    I see you are blind to the actual facts and are writing about a Catholic Church that is crumbling away. The lack of acknowledgment of wrongdoing at the very head of the Church has caused many to leave. Parishes are closing and there are fewer priests to run them. Catholic schools are closing due to declining enrollment. The vision begun by Pope John XXIII sadly were buried by Paul VI and Pope Benedict’s continued push to the right is continuing to push people further away.
    I think the Church I was raised in and have always been proud to be a member of, has turned it’s back on me and the many children who have been abused and shunned by the Roman Catholic Church.

  • Barbara, at first I thought your post was a tasteless April Fool’s joke. However, I see now that you are serious and I am very sorry that you are either this misinformed or this week. If you want the Church to become the same as the liberal Protestant churches who are in a statistical free fall then, shame on you. If you are week and run at the first sign of trouble, than I will continue to pray for you.

    My childhood parish had the distinction of having one of the highest number of molestors in my entir state, let alone diocese. I remember these molestors well, they were all liberals who wanted to change the Church and not defend it, some of the victims were people I knew.

    Even in the midst of this scandal, more and more young people, who are very orthodox in the Catholic faith, are becoming priests and nuns. In addition, the Church continues to see an increase in the number of converts (as evidenced by the last few years and this year in particular.)

    When Cardinal Ratzinger became Pope Benedict XVI, he prayed that God would give him the courage not to run when the wolves come. I pray Barbara that you find a backbone and stand up for the Faith when it is under attack by people who solely want to destory the Church by making outrageous accusations against Pope Benedict, without a single shred of evidence to back it up. There are even writers from the liberal America magazine who have said the conduct displayed by the NY Times and others is outrageous. I prayerfully ask you to consider these points.

The Dominican Sisters On The Oprah Winfrey Show

Friday, February 12, AD 2010

The Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist is based in Ann Arbor, Michigan.  They are a new order that arose from Pope John Paul II’s call for a new evangelization.  They are devout and orthodox in our Catholic faith which explains why the average age of a nun is 26 and they are already turning back inquiries since they are packed to capacity in their new convent.

They recently made an appearance on the Oprah Winfrey Show this past Tuesday, February 9.  I’ve only seen some of the show online and my assumptions were validated.  That being they were knowledgeable about our faith, energetically orthodox, and calm in their disposition.

I strongly advice you to watch all four videos that I have been able to track down of the entire show.  Some of the videos have a few seconds where the digital relay distorts the picture, but the sound is not disturbed.

Part I:  I love hearing the sisters talk about their faith unapologetically, ie, you hear “God called me”, “I am married to Jesus Christ”, etc, etc.  Simply beautiful!

Continue reading...

27 Responses to The Dominican Sisters On The Oprah Winfrey Show

  • I never watch Oprah but was visiting my brother’s family this past week and my sister-in-law had this particular show on. I was struck by Lisa Ling’s comments and was wondering if anyone knows if she is Catholic. It seems as these sisters, had a profouund impact on her.

  • Wait a minute! This is a scandal! They showed up on Oprah! We all know Oprah supported Obama! And according to this article, she supports abortion and homosexuality!

    http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2000/aug/00081101.html

    So how can they go on her show and make her evil acceptable?

    (Note to reader: this is sarcasm).

  • God can even use the vacuous Oprah show for His own purposes.

  • Doesn’t stop the fact, Donald, that their presence on Oprah helped her make more money, and we know she is pro-abortion… so how come no one is condemning them but praising them for the very things they condemn the USCCB for?!

  • Maybe because Oprah has absolutely nothing to say about the laws written in this country, how the laws are enforced and which judges are picked to enforce the laws. Additionally the nuns weren’t going on the show to honor Oprah, or to express support for her, but to spread their message. Oprah does quite nicely financially without the nuns. The nuns got a nice bit of publicity by going on the show. Making use of a pro-abort entertainer’s show in order to spread the message of Christ strikes me as being in the “cunning as serpents” category.

  • “Maybe because Oprah has absolutely nothing to say about the laws written in this country, how the laws are enforced and which judges are picked to enforce the laws.”

    While others say she is the one who got President Obama elected. And she has major influence over Obama. And she has major influence over her media.

    “Additionally the nuns weren’t going on the show to honor Oprah, or to express support for her, but to spread their message.”

    Same with the USCCB working with non-Catholic groups.

    “Oprah does quite nicely financially without the nuns.”

    So that excuses helping her make more money so she can push more pro-homosexual, pro-abortion themes in her media?

    “Making use of a pro-abort entertainer’s show in order to spread the message of Christ strikes me as being in the ‘cunning as serpents’ category.”

    It’s funny how it is “making use of…” and not “guilt by association” when people like a group.

  • “While others say she is the one who got President Obama elected.”

    Some people also say that Obama is a great President Karlson. Fantasy statements are never to be taken seriously. A lousy economy, Bush fatigue and McCain being a lousy candidate are what got Obama elected in this frame of reality.

    “Same with the USCCB working with non-Catholic groups.”

    It is called shoveling money at pro-abort groups Karlson. Feel free to try again.

    “So that excuses helping her make more money so she can push more pro-homosexual, pro-abortion themes in her media?”

    They didn’t help her make money Karlson by appearing on her show. She would have made precisely the same amount of money whether they appeared or not.

    “It’s funny how it is “making use of…” and not “guilt by association” when people like a group.”

    No it’s called the nuns being smart enough to use Oprah for their purposes. The Bishops are dumb enough to allow their Left-wing staffers at the USCCB to allow Left-wing groups to use the Bishops and the money contributed by unsuspecting Catholics.

  • “It is called shoveling money at pro-abort groups Karlson. Feel free to try again.”

    But God can use pro-aborts, as you just said. And so that’s why it is ok for the nuns to help Oprah get shoveled more money! Sheesh. Consistency. Not with you. Sophistry, that’s all you have.

  • Henry,

    When you try this “I will show how foolish your way of thinking is” tactics, you always end up with the egg on your own face because you don’t bother to actually understand the position of the people you’re trying to ridicule. Either do the work of understanding your opponents or just drop the tactic — you really don’t do yourself any credit with these dogged little “I’ll show you the implications of your thinking” sessions.

  • “But God can use pro-aborts, as you just said. And so that’s why it is ok for the nuns to help Oprah get shoveled more money!”

    Once again Karlson Oprah would have received precisely the same amount of money whether the nuns were on her show or not. The nuns did not place any more coins in her pocket. This is a strawman of yours that is completely unconvincing.

  • So Donald

    Since Oprah would receive the same amount of money either way,it makes it all fine for them to be the ones to help her make it?

  • She would have made exactly the same money Karlson if she had you on or Fifi the dancing beagle. The nuns used Oprah not the other way around.

  • Actually, would she? The fact that this got many who do not normally watch Oprah to watch her means it makes her more money. But the fact is, even if you are correct, you didn’t answer my question. Why should it be fine for them to help her make money, and thereby, cooperate with the evil which will be done with that money they helped her generate?

  • This really is not hard Karlson. Oprah makes precisely the same amount of money no matter who she has on. She is not a struggling host of a show trying to establish an audience. She has a huge audience and advertisers who pay her richly for commercial space on her show. She makes the same money no matter who she has. You will have to come up with some other red herring argument to argue that nuns appearing on Oprah is the same as the USCCB through the CHD funneling funds to pro-abort groups.

  • I agree with the fact that Oprah made no more money than she would have with a dog and pony show.
    I am an RN and I worked for a year in a convent and got to know a large group of the Sisters. I am also Catholic, as a convert in my sixties, before I worked at the Convent! They are usually incredibly quietly happy and work diligently to help others in many ways, the primary way in prayer, By renouncing the world in favor of Jesus when they become Sisters they do not think about money in their own existence. My guess would be that they went on that show to preach the name of Jesus as Savior, and no other reason as the Sisters of the Convent that I love would do! Nearly all of the Sisters I know worked most of their lives in poor areas of the southwest and California teaching school for indigent families children. If you do not know what it means to be a Sister you might do well to not comment about their motives!

  • Marilyn

    I don’t think you get the point of my comments. I am not criticizing the sisters, but applying the kind of logic which is used by some around here to judge the USCCB and show how it would also apply to those who do similar things and yet they applaud.

  • Henry points out the problems in logic when folks are selective in their criticism of association with evil. Oprah ok, but Jenkins not. Nixon ok, but Obama not. The dictatorship of relativism is wearing its tan uniforms on this site.

    If it didn’t sting on some level, you wouldn’t have strung out this thread into the teens. The fact that you have to continually justify it is telling. See if Michael Voris or Ray Arroyo can take your back on this.

    The bloggers here are playing to the home crowd, but they’re not doing their pro-life viewpoints, their conservative bona fides, or Catholicism any favors.

    Personally, I don’t see any problem with the nuns appearing on Oprah. Good for all of them.

  • Karlson makes a nonsense argument and Todd supports it. Business as usual for the usual suspects.

  • Marilyn,

    Disregard the comments by Henry K. and Todd.

    They want to destroy what is good for political points.

  • It’s a tough gig to have to prop up poor arguments, but you guys seem to have a good time doing so. Too bad we can’t take this discussion to Oprah or EWTN. They’re missing all the fun.

  • Todd let us know when you have an actual argument to contribute rather than just a snide attitute.

  • I think we need to say that the Sisters were invited to be on this Show, and it is not their intention to support Oprah.

    I think the best thing to conclude is that the little bit they did in harm is by far outweighed in the good which I no doubt occurred and will occur because of this encounter. I’m not trying to say this as a consequentialist.

    I say this because Oprah is not evil incarnate, she may be missinformed upon a great many subjects, but maybe she and her viewers can be converted. That is always the hope, appearing on a show of hers does not always show support for the views that Oprah has.

    I don’t know if you can link Oprah’s views to the Show in general. Any television program will have views that they support that will be in conflict with the faith. As long as you do not support or even make it known that you don’t support those views when you appear upon the said show I think it violates.

    We must engage culture in any case, show our disapproval and start to change it from the inside out. We are counter cultural and Christ will do the work, but we must engage in the debate and what better place then at the pinnacle of where it is seen. Silence is not an issue!

  • Pingback: Dominican Nuns Taught Oprah to Pray the Rosary « The American Catholic
  • Pingback: Dominican Nuns Taught Oprah to Pray the Rosary « The American Catholic
  • Pingback: From Harvard To Her Religious Calling « The American Catholic
  • I enjoyed watching these videos then unfortunately went to read the comments. The devil has his shills everywhere.

    God bless these wonderful sisters. I hope they touched many in Oprah’s audience who have been spoon fed untold amounts of new age nonsense and whatever else appears on that show.

  • Pingback: From Harvard To Her Religious Calling - Christian Forums

Thanks to the Young, the Tide is Still Turning Toward Catholicism

Thursday, October 8, AD 2009

All too often I hear the familiar refrain; “how can the tide be turning if the world seems to be increasingly at odds with the Church?”  The skeptics of my book, The Tide is Turning Toward Catholicism refer to many newsworthy stories in their query of my thesis. They point to elected officials and government czars seemingly supportive of ideas that not only challenge the core of Catholic beliefs, but conventional societal beliefs about the family as well. The skeptics of my thesis point to the latest Hollywood Cause Célèbre which involves rallying around a man (famed Film Director Roman Polanski) who has admitted to raping a child of 13 when he was 45 years old. They also point to the outright mockery of the Catholic Church at the hands of the entertainment industry by those who believe the tide is turning in their direction. In addition, the skeptics of my thesis also point to stories that barely get any media attention such as an abortion clinic who prominently displayed a crucifix in their window with Jesus replaced on the cross by a chicken. Another sign in the window of the same abortion clinic read “no job too big or too small.” How could the tide be turning if this is what we see and don’t see on television news, the morning paper or on the internet they asked? Thankfully, there are many reasons that tide is turning, and we need to look no further than the young to understand why.

Keep in mind that while the tide is turning for the Church, it is turning in the wrong direction for for the world. The Church is the only one who can save the world and it is something which has already been done many times in history, which is why the enemies of the Church are so upset. If the enemies of religion would be as kind to us as they are toward the liberal mainline Protestant churches, one would have cause to be worried. However unlike the mainline Protestant churches, the Catholic Church’s numbers are not in a free fall and vocation numbers are on the increase.

Continue reading...

12 Responses to Thanks to the Young, the Tide is Still Turning Toward Catholicism

  • What a splendid hope-filled article. Thank you.

  • Pingback: Thanks to the Young, the Tide is Still Turning Toward Catholicism - Christian Forums
  • Kudos on a masterpiece that Polanski can only wish to achieve. As Christ didn’t find the going to be anything but tough even though one would think his power would have made it otherwise, neither can we expect anything different. But we should look at how far Christianity has gone despite the setbacks along the way. And we know the tide will keep turning in our favor It has to if the promised victory at the end of the Bible is to be realized.

  • Amen Dave. As Bishop Chaput told those in Rome, in an editorial in an Italian magazine article, to those churchman who seemed to favor our President’s early rhetoric and his speech at ND, Free will today is valued more highly than life. Good to read your comments again and yes, the tide is truly turning. Take care and God Bless.

  • Regarding the Diocese of Rochester, last Monday the Catholic Courier (DOR’s diocesan newspaper) published a story publicly admitting what had been common knowledge locally: In a mere 8 years (i.e., from 2000 to 2008) the diocese had lost over 25% of its weekend Mass attendees.

    While diocesan leadership has blamed our decline in Mass attendance on what it terms a demographic shift (i.e., northern Catholics moving to the sun belt states), the bottom line is that DOR is losing Mass attendees 9 times faster than Catholics are leaving New York State.

    See http://www.catholiccourier.com/tmp1.cfm?nid=78&articleid=109508&cfid=4092824&cftoken=68817627

  • “and often residing in the rural parts of their dioceses”

    This is also true for our few seminarians in the Diocese of Rochester. Not one of the six was raised within the city of Rochester or its surrounding suburbs in Monroe County. Two are from Livonia, two from Elmira, one from Ontario county, and another has been residing here only a brief time since entering college. Perhaps this is a good thing, as our more liberal priests and lay Pastoral Administrators (laypeople or nuns who have full control over one or more parishes) are located within Monroe County.

    ~Dr. K

  • Dr. K. It was good to see that Elmira was listed in my old parish I left years ago ( and I do mean years ago ) Our current Bishop came from that city and there are still many othodox young people there. I remember Bishop Sheen when he did his best to create the right environment for all of us in the Diocese.

  • I believe it is a mistake to write of “Catholicism”, as though it is but another ISM. The Church and the sacraments are but the means to get us into heaven. As the Church teaches, you may go to Mass every day of your life and still fail.

    As the council fathers of Vatican II attempted to indicate, every person in the world is a potential Catholic. Being human is being almost a Catholic.

    Was it not one of the weaknesses of the Church in pre Vatican II days that it had – that its members had – too certain a sense of salvation? That it did not pay attention to Satan who roams the world seeking whom he many devour?

    The sudden rise of divorce, of contraception, of abortion demonstrated how weak were the defenses of Catholics against these temptations. And how too sure of themselves were our bishops, who even today do not “like” to bring up these subjects.

    These failed shepherds will have much to explain when called to give their accounts.

  • I hope my children or perhaps my grandchildren live to see that you are correct.

  • Dave,

    A fine start to your contribution on the American Catholic website.

    I do see these changes, but as Father Zuhlsdorf says, brick by brick.

    Lets be the change agents at each of our own parishes as we assist our churches to return reverence and orthodoxy with charity back!

  • Gabriel Austin asked, “Was it not one of the weaknesses of the Church in pre Vatican II days that it had – that its members had – too certain a sense of salvation?”

    As one who was raised in the pre-Vatican II days, including 16 years of Catholic education ending with a college diploma in 1965, I would have to answer in the negative.

    In my little corner of the world (upstate New York) we were all well aware of what mortal sin was, as well as its consequences.

    Our catechesis may have been overly legalistic at times, but it was not short on authentic Church teaching.

    That is just the opposite from what I see today in that same little corner of the world.

  • Mike writes Sunday, October 11, 2009 A.D. at 9:30 am
    “Gabriel Austin asked, “Was it not one of the weaknesses of the Church in pre Vatican II days that it had – that its members had – too certain a sense of salvation?”

    “As one who was raised in the pre-Vatican II days, including 16 years of Catholic education ending with a college diploma in 1965, I would have to answer in the negative.
    “In my little corner of the world (upstate New York) we were all well aware of what mortal sin was, as well as its consequences.
    “Our catechesis may have been overly legalistic at times, but it was not short on authentic Church teaching”.

    We were intellectually – superficially – aware of the catechism. But how deep did it sink?
    Perhaps you do not recall the [non] reception of Humanae Vitae. Encouraged by “theologians” bishops simply ignored it. It was too unpopular.

    The ferocity of Judy Brown’s work is due to her having been told by her parish priest that it was OK to use the pill. When she discovered that he lied, she became and remains furious.

    Bishop Shannon had the honesty to resign, without publicity, when he decided he could not accept Humanae Vitae.

    “That is just the opposite from what I see today in that same little corner of the world”.

    My point precisely. From overly “legalistic” to every man his own bishop, which is to say seeking excuses to do what we want to do, rather than what we ought to do.

    I harp on this because I see a misunderstanding of the work of the Church. It is not to create an institution; that institution exists and is protected. It is rather the tiresome business of getting each of us into heaven which is our future and not being overly concerned with the future on earth.

McBrien to Eucharistic Adoration: Step Backward

Tuesday, September 8, AD 2009

Father Richard McBrien, Professor of Theology at Notre Dame, boy that comes as a shock doesn’t it, doesn’t think much of eucharistic adoration.  McBrien of course has been a fierce defender of the secular zeitgeist for decades, and has done his very best to wean generations of Catholics from anything in the Faith that would not pass muster at fashionable parties in academia. 

For myself I love eucharistic adoration.  I never have done it without feeling much closer to God.  Since John Paul II also approved of it in his letter DOMINICAE CENAE, I guess I will just have to bear up under the strain of being thought backward by Professor McBrien.  Father Z gives McBrien his patented fisking here

You know, tenured dissenters like McBrien have a real problem on their hands in the age of the internet.  It is very easy now for ordinary Catholics to have access to church teaching by a few clicks and read what John Paul II wrote:

“Adoration of Christ in this sacrament of love must also find expression in various forms of eucharistic devotion: personal prayer before the Blessed Sacrament, Hours of Adoration, periods of exposition-short, prolonged and annual (Forty Hours)-eucharistic benediction, eucharistic processions, eucharistic congresses.”

Of course Pope Benedict’s views are well known and are set forth here.  When we have such easy access to the words of Peter, it is much harder for Catholics to be bamboozled by flim-flam artists like McBrien seeking to distort the teaching of the Church in service of their personal agendas.  The modern world provides many challenges to the Church, but I think in the long run the internet may become a great advantage to the magisterium of Holy Mother Church.

Continue reading...

47 Responses to McBrien to Eucharistic Adoration: Step Backward

  • From the McBrien article:

    Notwithstanding Pope Benedict XVI’s personal endorsement of eucharistic adoration and the sporadic restoration of the practice in the archdiocese of Boston and elsewhere, it is difficult to speak favorably about the devotion today.

    Now that most Catholics are literate and even well-educated, the Mass is in the language of the people (i.e, the vernacular), and its rituals are relatively easy to understand and follow, there is little or no need for extraneous eucharistic devotions. The Mass itself provides all that a Catholic needs sacramentally and spiritually.

    Eucharistic adoration, perpetual or not, is a doctrinal, theological, and spiritual step backward, not forward.

    “Could you not stay awake with me one hour?”

    Apparently that would be entirely extraneous. I guess I’ll just have to remain an ignorant layman encrusted with medieval devotions.

  • “It is difficult to speak favorably about the devotion today.”

    Well, I suppose all the members of parishes that have grown and thrived after instituting Eucharistic adoration, all the priests and religious whose vocations have been discerned after taking up “the devotion”, and all the laity whose prayers have been answered and who have grown closer to God as a result of this “step backward,” would beg to differ.

  • McBrien and fashionable parties in academia in the same sentence? Amusing.

    But seriously, can you not even take Fr. McBrien’s arguments seriously, at face value, without ridiculing them? All this post says is, “Well, I like it, and the Pope likes it, therefore McBrien is wrong.”

    Interesting, too, that I have seen many of you criticize others on the web for not using proper titles, like “Father” and “Bishop.” I have never seen a right-wing Catholic blog refer to McBrien as “Father McBrien.” Donatism dies hard.

  • “I have never seen a right-wing Catholic blog refer to McBrien as “Father McBrien.” Donatism dies hard.”

    Then you haven’t been looking very hard.

    “But seriously, can you not even take Fr. McBrien’s arguments seriously, at face value, without ridiculing them?”

    Fr. McBrien made a serious argument? His inane commentary is nothing but dissident chic. He is basically saying “Never mind what that quaint little old man in Rome says, adoration of Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament is for suckers.”

  • McBrien doesn’t make an argument. He makes a sneer. His sneer is set forth in verbiage, but a sneer it remains. His comment about well-educated Catholics was especially risible since recent polls indicate how large a portion of Catholics do not believe in the Real Presence. His sneer is, in essence, that really bright Catholics like him are ashamed of eucharistic devotion and that only simpletons, like John Paul II and Saint Thomas Aquinas I assume, would have any use for it.

    As to Donatism, the Donatists defied the Popes and persisted in their schism. One can observe throughout McBrien’s career a careful determination not to follow Papal teaching when it deviated from his.

  • But seriously, can you not even take Fr. McBrien’s arguments seriously, at face value, without ridiculing them?

    I guess I’m having trouble seeing what exactly is an “argument” to be taken seriously. I don’t see how the point that the mass is in our own language and we’re well educated means that the mass itself provides the only sacramental and spiritual sustenance that any Catholic should possibly need. It’s not an argument, in that the one statement in no way follows from the other, and even as an assertion it seems a bit nonsensical. Why should the fact that the mass is well understood (to an extent) mean that no other devotions have any place in the Catholic life — particularly one with such a long and rich tradition, and so consistently followed and encouraged by the Church and her leaders.

    Do you see any actual argument to even engage with there?

    Interesting, too, that I have seen many of you criticize others on the web for not using proper titles, like “Father” and “Bishop.” I have never seen a right-wing Catholic blog refer to McBrien as “Father McBrien.” Donatism dies hard.

    Actually, I’m not aware of any of us having criticized others for this, and I’m sure that I’ve referred to Fr. Neuhaus simply as Neuhaus when I’m talking about him as a writer, despite the fact I have great respect for the late father. But no, I have no particular objection to calling Fr. McBrien by his honorific, and indeed, if you’ll look at the text of the post the very first words of it are “Father Richard McBrien”.

  • Beat me to it Donald in posting this.

    This is simply incredible.

    He does sneer at us with his comments and it smacks nothing more than treating us as less than smart.

    Sad.

  • Look, I like Eucharistic adoration. I don’t agree with Fr. McBrien all the time. But he is right to point out the disproportionate interest in adoration in our history, as well as the centrality of the Mass. You need to be willing to read for insights and to appreciate the truth of what he says even if you don’t go as far as he does.

    Fr. McBrien is right to “sneer” at certain tendencies in the Church.

    He does sneer at us with his comments and it smacks nothing more than treating us as less than smart.

    Some of you are “less than smart.”

  • Imprimatur,

    No one has said one iota about not attending Mass and replacing it with the Eucharist.

    You sound a lot like the Catholic Anarchist.

  • I can’t believe such offensive and patronizing drivel was written by a Catholic priest.

    Of course it is “difficult” to say anything good about a practice that is ridiculed as the province of illiterate bumpkins. This equivocation of a serious faith with academic learning may be convenient for the smug hypocrites of academia, but I for one am glad that the practice is still alive and well.

    Some people wouldn’t understand spirituality if it smashed them repeatedly in the face. This Catholic, with three university degrees, is more than happy to participate in Eucharistic adoration.

    Long live the Latin Mass, and long live Eucharistic adoration. And good riddance to the spoiled, self-important boomer generation that tried its best to destroy authentic spirituality within the Church.

  • No one has said one iota about not attending Mass and replacing it with the Eucharist.

    Well here you go. That whole “less than smart” thing. Good example.

    It doesn’t surprise me that you think I sound like a Catholic anarchist considering the way you paint everyone you think is a “dissenter” with the same brush. I haven’t met too many anarchists who pray the rosary and the divine office or who, as I said, like Eucharistic adoration.

    My point is that you need to be able to actually hear what a person is saying. A better response to his article would have been, “Here is here he is right, pointing out incorrect emphases, etc.” and “Here is where he is wrong, and here is why Eucharistic adoration is a valuable practice and WHY IT FITS WITH THE “NEW” MASS and does not oppose it.” All we have here is “McBrien is a fool,” followed by Joe’s comment of “long live the old way, the ‘true’ spirituality, and good riddance to the new, the inauthentic.”

    The result is that you all look very imbalanced, purely dismissive, unable to appreciate catholicity (small ‘c,’ referring to unity in diversity), and very very foolish.

  • That said, I think McBrien also displays a lack of catholicity in the sense that I described it above. He goes to far. But the core critique that he presents has some validity.

  • Oh please.

    In whose eyes, exactly, do we look “foolish”? Those already inclined to look upon those who actually do take tradition seriously as foolish. Who are these fence-sitters that would love everything we have to say, if only we would smile politely when a McBrien ridicules us? They don’t exist.

    I would gladly remain a fool for tradition before I would take seriously these hollow and meaningless attacks upon it.

    We heard exactly what he said – that Eucharistic adoration is a “step backward”. What are we supposed to say to that, exactly? Who is this man to declare what Catholics “need”? Who is he to declare what we don’t “need”? That level of arrogance and presumption is highly offensive, not to mention “foolish”.

  • Joe >>>

    In whose eyes, exactly, do we look “foolish”?

    Catholics who attempt to be moderate, you know, to be catholic.

    Those already inclined to look upon those who actually do take tradition seriously as foolish.

    There is not one single “tradition.” Our church is catholic. You are not the only one who takes “tradition” seriously. You take one set of Catholic traditions seriously. McBrien takes another set of traditions seriously. This “we’re the only ones who take tradition seriously” crap is silly. You’re a thoughtful guy. I read your stuff. I expect better from you, unlike some of your co-bloggers.

    We heard exactly what he said – that Eucharistic adoration is a “step backward”. What are we supposed to say to that, exactly?

    Try to understand WHY he is saying that, think about it, and then critique it while trying to appreciate what might be true about it.

    Who is this man to declare what Catholics “need”?

    Who are YOU to do the same? Who are YOU to declare that he is “attacking” tradition, that the traditions that he values are not authentic, that the ones YOU value are the only ones that are authentic?

    That level of arrogance and presumption is highly offensive, not to mention “foolish”.

    You are the one who sounds arrogant when you say: “Some people wouldn’t understand spirituality if it smashed them repeatedly in the face” and “And good riddance to the spoiled, self-important boomer generation that tried its best to destroy authentic spirituality within the Church.”

    If McBrien is being arrogant, then so are you.

  • For some curious reason, Father McBrien calls to mind the first several chapters of Thomas a Kempis’ Imitation of Christ.

    A proposal — let’s say a prayer for Father McBrien next time we find ourselves before the Blessed Sacrament.

  • Imp,

    First of all, what is this set of traditions that McBrien takes seriously? He is clearly a ‘progressive’ who believes that the march of technological progress (which in the final instance is what enables widespread literacy and education) necessitates the transformation of the liturgy and spiritual practices. How is that adherence to a tradition? How is that not a crude historicism that reduces spiritual and liturgical practices to products of their historical-material circumstances as opposed to inspired by God?

    I know exactly “why” his kind argues as they do; they believe in progress at the expense of tradition. They don’t wish to look foolish in the eyes of the secular world, which has never properly or accurately understood spiritual practice to begin with. The holy sacrifice of the Mass must be reduced to a ‘community meal’ and Scripture reading, while practices such as Eucharistic adoration are dismissed are holdovers of a medieval past. They find Catholic spirituality embarrassing in the modern world.

    I don’t tell Catholics what they need – there are certain things I believe are poisonous to the soul, but that argument could never be made about Eucharistic adoration. McBrien doesn’t reject it because it is objectively bad for Catholics, but because it makes him and his friends feel foolish. It is a shameful argument.

  • A stopped clock is right twice a day, and there is one nugget of truth in what Fr. McBrien said: “The Mass itself provides all that a Catholic needs sacramentally and spiritually.”

    It is true that actually RECIEVING the Eucharist is a sacrament, while adoring the Eucharist (wonderful though it is) is not, and that the actual Mass is obligatory for Catholics while Eucharistic adoration is not. A parish must offer Mass regularly but does not have to have perpetual or regular Eucharistic adoration. One could attend Mass faithfully, but never attend adoration, and still be a good Catholic.

    That being said, the fact that Eucharistic adoration doesn’t replace the Mass and that an observant Catholic can get by without it doesn’t mean it’s bad, or backward, or wrong. Devotion to particular saints, the rosary, novenas, etc. also aren’t strictly “necessary” for Catholics but that doesn’t make them bad.

    The fact that Fr. McBrien would say something like this doesn’t surprise me at all because he’s always been a “usual suspect” among the progressive/liberal wing of the Church.

  • The McBrien column recalls the story of a newly minted priest who was walking through a cathedral with his Bishop. The Bishop had decided to send the priest to Rome to study towards a doctorate because the young man was very bright and showed great promise. He was also afraid the young man suffered from intellectual vanity. He pointed out to the priest a Mrs. McGinnis who earned her daily bread by scrubbing floors and who was kneeling, saying a rosary silently as she gazed at the eucharist. Out of earshot of the woman he told the priest, “Do you know that she couldn’t tell you precisely who the Doctors of the Church are to save her soul?” The priest responded that such ignorance was terrible if not surprising. “Yet Father,” the Bishop continued, “since each morning she is here before she commences her daily toil to adore our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament, I have no doubt she understands in her heart what each of the Doctors of the Church meant.”

  • Imprimatur if you are the Catholic Anarchist, Michael Iafrate, you will kindly stop posting in this thread since, as you know, I have banned you forever from posting on my threads. If you are not Iafrate, my apologies for raising the issue.

  • And good riddance to the spoiled, self-important boomer generation that tried its best to destroy authentic spirituality within the Church.

    Large segments of the Baby Boomer generation have done a lot of harm. I’ve always thought of that generation as having endured a civil war with itself….let’s hope those determined to bend the country to their infantile will continue to discredit themselves in the eyes of their children – the “sexual revolution” and divorce in particular have been terribly destructive.

  • No, there is nothing to engage here: McBrien doesn’t discuss anything anymore, he simply issues declarations larded with ipse dixits.

    Preconciliar BAD! Pope Benedict BAD! are the two arrows in his quiver, and both the tattered missiles are launched here.

    Where in this tossed-off essay is the slightest hint that he has seriously engaged with the topic? Instead, we have the following:

    1. A selective and deliberately incomplete reading of history;

    2. Well-poisoning (pointing to ridiculous excesses to discredit the entire practice);

    3. Universalizing certain contemporary progressive American Catholic experiences as normative for the entire Church;

    4. Preening self-regard (the “most educated laity” trope);

    5. Pitting pre-conciliar Church experience against certain post-conciliar practices (always to the detriment of the former);

    6. A gratuitous dig at the Pope (quelle suprise);

    and

    7. A gratuitous shot at the sacrament of reconciliation, another McBrien bete noire (“the Mass itself provides all that a Catholic needs sacramentally”–a titanic lie).

    “You’re hopelessly backward” is not an invitation to discussion. He deserves each and every brickbat tossed at him.

  • BTW, Elaine: please note that the “titanic lie” line wasn’t directed at you–I hadn’t even read your comment before posting. Fr. McBrien’s consistent dismissal of the sacrament of reconciliation sets my teeth on edge.

    But I do suggest that the Mass does not provide all that we need, and is not intended to, by design.

  • First of all, what is this set of traditions that McBrien takes seriously?

    He takes Vatican II and that initial set of reforms of the liturgy seriously.

    He is clearly a ‘progressive’ who believes that the march of technological progress (which in the final instance is what enables widespread literacy and education) necessitates the transformation of the liturgy and spiritual practices.

    There is nothing in his writing that suggests a belief in “technological progress” in relation to liturgy.

    How is that adherence to a tradition?

    There is no traditionless thinking of belief.

    How is that not a crude historicism that reduces spiritual and liturgical practices to products of their historical-material circumstances as opposed to inspired by God?

    Again, nothing suggests that a belief in change and/or reform entails a belief in “crude historicism” or a reduction of liturgy to “products.” Vatican II itself talked about continual reform as part of the nature of the church.

    I know exactly “why” his kind argues as they do; they believe in progress at the expense of tradition.

    Again, “tradition” is not one thing. Tradition is a process not specific content. Vatican II reforms, as you know, entailed a going back to the sources. The reforms that came out of VII are precisely all about tradition. With reference to Eucharistic adoration, the Church wanted to place a renewed emphasis on the centrality of the Mass to curb the way in which some devotional practices can distort the meaning of the Eucharist. Whether you agree with it or not, that is still a problem in the Church today. I have worked in parishes and saw it day in and day out. McBrien is right to remind us of the possibility of sacramental distortion.

    YOU on the other hand want to preserve, in cold cement, ONE PARTICULAR tradition which is ITSELF a product of history and not simply “given by God.” Liturgy, in its various forms and in the very process of its reform, is indeed inspired by God but not apart from history and not apart from persons and the community of the Church discerning the action of the Spirit. The tradition you prefer is NOT eternal, but a snapshot of a particular point in time. It’s fine for you to prefer that, but you need to know that your preferences tend to amount to a radical denial of the activity of God in within the Church. And God does not stand still. Hang on to your preferences — the one, true, authentic Tradition — but do not complain when the rest of the Church is moved somewhere else.

  • And it goes without saying that whether you like it or not, the Church did change its liturgy at Vatican II and it changed its very liturgical mindset at VII.

  • Michael/Imprimatur,

    With reference to Eucharistic adoration, the Church wanted to place a renewed emphasis on the centrality of the Mass to curb the way in which some devotional practices can distort the meaning of the Eucharist. Whether you agree with it or not, that is still a problem in the Church today. I have worked in parishes and saw it day in and day out. McBrien is right to remind us of the possibility of sacramental distortion.

    I’m not aware of any sense in which the Church actually expressed a desire to curb Eucharistic adoration as a devotional practice because of a fear that it distorted the meaning of the Eucharist.

    The Church did seek to institute liturgical reforms that would make the mass more easily understandable and to introduce elements of catechesis into the mass — and certain devotional practices which amounted to doing something else during mass (say, saying the rosary during mass rather than following the mass itself) have certainly been discouraged, but it is by no means apparent how Eucharistic adoration is in conflict with a proper understanding of the mass.

    If Fr. McBrien is aware of some way in which this is a problem, he certainly goes to no effort to mention it in his piece, which instead is primarily just a sneer of “we’ve moved beyond these embarrassing practices” combined with vague hints that the urge to participate in adoration is rooted in an overly physical understanding of the nature of transubstantiation.

  • You people are so narrow minded. Don’t you realize that you’re ***c***atholics? There is no single tradition. Me myself, I just yesterday participated in a solemn caterwauling liturgy of the vegan transgendered Ethiopian rite. They’ve been around since way before Trent, you unwashed fools. They don’t do Eucharistic adoration, by the way. They know *better*. Plus they make me look cool when I take them to meet my dissertation chair at the faculty club.

  • Darwin, how did you know my name is Michael? That’s a little creepy…

    I’m not aware of any sense in which the Church actually expressed a desire to curb Eucharistic adoration as a devotional practice because of a fear that it distorted the meaning of the Eucharist.

    What I actually said was that the church was trying to curb the distortions, not the practice of adoration.

    but it is by no means apparent how Eucharistic adoration is in conflict with a proper understanding of the mass.

    You’re right. And I said above that I like Eucharistic adoration and that I don’t think it conflicts with the Mass. What conflicts with the Mass is the distortion that can occur in some ways of understanding Eucharistic adoration.

    If Fr. McBrien is aware of some way in which this is a problem, he certainly goes to no effort to mention it in his piece, which instead is primarily just a sneer of “we’ve moved beyond these embarrassing practices”

    I also said above that I have some problems with McBrien’s article. I think he goes too far. He lacks catholicity. But so do you when you read him (and me, apparently) with no desire to understand him or to be challenged by what IS true in his thinking. You commit the same sin, sneering at McBrien instead of hearing him out.

    …combined with vague hints that the urge to participate in adoration is rooted in an overly physical understanding of the nature of transubstantiation.

    Catholics don’t believe Christ is physically present in the Eucharist, but that he is really, sacramentally present. If McBrien does imply that in his article (I’d have to read it again to see, and I don’t want to), then is is accurately reflecting Catholic teaching on the Eucharist.

  • Darwin, how did you know my name is Michael? That’s a little creepy…

    Because I’d previously put you on moderation for bad behavior both by email address and by IP address. Since you’re using the same computer as before, even though using a different email and handle, WordPress tells me who you are. (And surely you can see how it’s a bit dishonest to blog under several different names, while denying the connection between them, in the same venue.)

    On the topic — I guess the basic breakdown here is that it seems to me that what little of value might be taken of McBrien’s article is stuff which is at best implied or hinted at. I can’t really see that there’s anything of what’s actually there that’s of value. And so, while I can see the value of reading things charitably, I just can’t see that there’s any worth to what he wrote. Maybe if one is deeply familiar with the McBrien oeuvre there’s some background insight that shines through, but just reading this piece in isolation the few things he says that are true are so obviously so that one hardly needs to put up with the other flaws in the piece to recognize such truths.

  • Imprimatur\Catholic Anarchist, I assume you are Iafrate and thus any further comments by you will be deleted from this thread and any other threads in any of my other posts.

  • Imprimatur writes: “Catholics don’t believe Christ is physically present in the Eucharist.”

    Do Catholics not believe that the “body, blood, soul and divinity” of Christ is actually present in the Holy Eucharist?

  • e.
    Actual or Real Presence transcends carnal or physical presence. They are not the same. Impramatur is right on that. He is wrong on most everything else, as is McBrien.

  • Catholic Anarchist,

    Donald is probably sleeping now, but I’m around, so don’t bother going on the campus computer to get around your ban.

  • Thank you Tito!

    “We few, we happy few, we band of bloggers,” as my wife observed after reading the above comment by you!

  • non-Imprimatur,

    Catholics who attempt to be moderate, you know, to be catholic.

    to that the Lord replies:

    Apocalypse 3:16 But because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold, not hot, I will begin to vomit thee out of my mouth

  • ps. nice to see some solidarity on this blog!

  • Of course McBrien would think adoration is a step backward – he’s facing the wrong direction.

  • As an Eastern Catholic, we do not do adoration; nor do the Orthodox. I have no problems with people doing so, and think it is a good devotion, but many people forget other devotions because of it (like icons) and also forget the primary purpose of the eucharist (communion). It’s a complicated issue, but the Orthodox world do have questions about the practice and find it strange — all without being liberal. On the other hand, I don’t think McBrien’s reasons are based upon the Orthodox response, since I think he would probably question iconographic devotion, too.

  • The way it has been explained to me AFAIK is the substance of Christ’s Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity (hence, transubstantiation) is truly present under the accidents of bread and wine. Can’t really explain more beyond that.

  • Its a weak comparison, but imagine that by some processing method they could make tofu look, feel, taste and smell like and in all other respects act like certified angus beef. The substance would be tofu, but it would have the accidents of real beef.

  • HK,

    many people forget other devotions because of it (like icons) and also forget the primary purpose of the eucharist (communion).

    that’s absurd. You’re suggesting that one can over do the WORSHIP OUR BLESSED LORD before HIS REAL PRESENCE as opposed to worshiping Him before a likeness???

    If the Lord came to your parish in his entire Glorified Body and sat in the adoration chapel for you to go and Worship and speak with Him, would you caution against overdoing it???? Excuse me Lord, I must go and pray before a picture of you, I don’t want to “over do” this face to face stuff.

  • What I find hilarious in all of this is that Pope Benedict, in his wisdom (God bless and keep him), is now proposing a “reform of the reform” designed to increase reverence for God and the Mass.

    It is now absolutely undeniable that some of the changes, if not most of the changes, made at “VII” have had a harmful effect – whether we look at what the average Catholic now believes theologically or even worse, morally or politically, or the child molestation scandals, the declining membership, the declining priesthood, etc, etc.

    Tradition can absolutely be added to, but there is a difference between adding to tradition and subtracting from it, distorting it, and throwing it away for some new innovation based upon what is popular in the secular world. Motivation here counts for a great deal – why were the changes made? In what spirit?

    Looking back now, the Papacy has come to realize that the essence of tradition, the reverence and devotion that Catholics once had for Christ through the Mass, has been slipping away – and is taking steps to do something about it. The Catholic ‘Anarchists’ and Father McBriens are on the way out, and not a moment too soon (and hopefully not too late).

  • Matt

    Icons present to us the real presence of Christ as well. The image is always related to and bring to us the presence of the prototype, and it is real. Read St John of Damascus and St Theodore the Studite on Icons. Then read Orthodox commentary about worship — they point out that communion was not reserved or meant to be reserved, but is for the sake of participation, eating — that is what it is for.

    “If the Lord came to your parish in his entire Glorified Body” would you grab a knife? Your second point is therefore inappropriate. The whole point is you have his presence, his glorified presence, in the icon. That’s why St Thomas Aquinas said,

    “Consequently the same reverence should be shown to Christ’s image as to Christ Himself. Since, therefore, Christ is adored with the adoration of ‘latria,’ it follows that His image should be adored with the adoration of ‘latria.'”

    ST III-XXV.3

  • HK,

    what your missing the point here entirely. Christ is present everywhere, even in us, but not in the same sense as he is present in the Eucharist… Body, Soul, and Divinity – in substance. It IS Him. Not a “prototype”, not in the same way as He is present whenever 2 or more are gathered, but really, truly and physically present, as He would be sitting in the Chapel.

    Yes of course, the body is to be consumed and that is the principle purpose of the Eucharistic Miracle, however, it is not a question of quantity. You would not see greater graces from receiving every hour of every day. There are graces from spending time in His presence for every additional second.

    This really is fairly basic, I’m not sure why you’re having so much difficulty.

    Finally, you completely neglected to address the point that you have created a straw man. Nobody does what you suggest, excessive adoration at the expense of worshiping at the Sacrifice and receiving Him in Holy Communion. Nobody.

  • Matt

    You are the one who is missing the point. I would highly recommend Schmemann’s “The Eucharist,” and leave it at that.

  • Matt says: “[Christ] is present in the Eucharist… Body, Soul and Divinity…[He] is really, truly an physically present [in the Eucharist].”

    I thought likewise (i.e., Body, Blood, Soul & Divinity; and, therefore, really & *physically* present); however, didn’t Mike Petrik suggest this is not actually the case?

  • Dale — thanks. Likewise, I hadn’t read the full McBrien article, so I didn’t realize his comment about the Mass being “all that a Catholic needs sacramentally” implied that the sacrament of penance isn’t necessary.

    Now I have heard SOME interpretations of canon law which claim that the obligation to go to confession once a year strictly applies only if you have mortal sins that need confessing. So according to this interpretation (which I would imagine McBrien subscribes to), if one manages to avoid mortal sin, the sacrament of penance is never “necessary.”

    However, in practice, I doubt very much that many Catholics who don’t bother going to confession even once a year successfully avoid serious sin for the duration. Even liberals admit that “once a year only in case of mortal sin” is merely a bare minimum legal requirement, not a recipe for a fruitful spiritual life.