Thursday, February 28, 2019

Necessary Ecclesial Reforms

RealClearReligion: The Catholic Church Needs a Radically Traditional Revolution By A.A.J. DeVille

And yet there will be disagreement about who gets to participate in such governance.

Comparative Liturgy


The Wrath of God Is Not Taboo. Even Pope Francis Admits It

Related: The case against Cardinal Pell: What are they saying?

Still One of My Favorite Saints

CWR: Newman on St. Philip Neri as a Model of Reform by Fr. Charles Fox
“He will not contend or cry out, nor will anyone hear his voice in the streets. A bruised reed he will not break, a smoldering wick he will not quench, until he brings justice to [...]

George Weigel on the Future Metropolitan Borys

CWR: Homecoming by George Weigel

In the mid-1980s, my wife and I were invited to a baptism and to the post-christening reception at the home of the newborn’s parents. During the latter festivities, I was introduced to a young man [...]

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Something I need to review.

CWR: Genesis, Covenant, and Salvation History by Peter M.J. Stravinskas

One of the unique aspects of the Genesis narratives is that the sacred author(s) have such a profound consciousness of divine election that they see the beginning of the Hebrew people as flowing very naturally [...]

Bishop Steven J Lopes: "Beauty in the Spoken Word and Ministerial Action"

Cupich's Proposal

Some info here and America Magazine. Where is the accountability of the metropolitan to his "suffragan" bishops? If bishops are unfamiliar to one another, then maybe the election of bishops should be reformed, so that the bishops are accountable first to the local synod of presbyters, who are not just co-laborers (co-workers) or co-operators in the harvest - if the canonical and theological distinction in orders between presbyter and bishop is one made through subsequent positive law (and the development of the monoepiscopate) and not by the Apostles, perhaps a return to the Apostolic practice is even more warranted now.

What we need perhaps is less pushing of responsibility "up" but "out."

Beauty of the Liturgy...

When the young Church recognized the cross of Christ as the moment of salvation, Christ himself as the sacrifice of atonement and the lamb of God that takes away the sins of the world, then it was clear for her that all the bloody cult of sacrifice had been abrogated once and for all. Christianity was a cult-revolution in antiquity. The bloodletting of Golgotha makes all man-made victims obsolete. There is now just the “leiturgia logike,” the spiritual, rational liturgy. It is telling that the Epistle to the Hebrews signifies the Christian religious service as “the sacrifice of praise” and “fruit of the lips.” And in the fact, inexplicable in itself, that early Christians refused to express their civic loyalty by sacrificing before images of the emperor, we can see a clear result of this spiritualization. There is no longer any other sacrifice efficacious before God, save the one of Golgotha. There are also no longer any priests in the plural, but only the one Jesus Christ.

Monday, February 25, 2019

Which tradition?

I AM A TRADITIONALIST; THEREFORE, I AM by Aristotle Papanikolaou

Papanikolaou makes use of MacIntyre regarding traditions; but shouldn't he distinguish between different ecclesial traditions? There is Sacred Tradition (or the Orthodox equivalent) and then there are theological traditions. There may also be theological opinions about moral teaching but that doesn't mean that those opinions do not reflect the Natural Law. Does Papanikolaou accept that there is a Natural Law? What is his take on the moral law as revealed in the Old Testament?

For those who seek to innovate, they must meet the burden of proof.

And there is also the question of what in the Byzantine tradition reflects Sacred tradition and what does not (female deacons, as opposed to

Sunday, February 24, 2019

The Iveron Icon


More on the Summit

NCReg: Day 2 Abuse Summit Discussions Focus on Accountability by Edward Pentin

On Final Day of Discussions, Abuse Summit Highlights Transparency by Edward Pentin

Pope Francis’ Concluding Address to Participants of Vatican Summit on Child Protection by Edward Pentin
‘The time has come to work together to eradicate this evil from the body of our humanity by adopting every necessary measure already in force on the international level and ecclesial levels.’

Pope Francis Outlines 8-Point Plan for ‘All-Out Battle’ Against Sexual Abuse by Courtney Grogan/CNA

How to Heal the Schism

Public Orthodoxy: HEALING THE UKRAINIAN SCHISM by Rev. Dr. Nicholas Denysenko

Blessed is the Man

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Sandro Magister on the Summit

February 21, Feast of Saint Peter Damian, a Prophet For Today’s Church
At the Summit, Homosexuality Is Taboo. But There Is Caution Over “Zero Tolerance”
Second Day of the Summit. With New Accusations Against Bergoglio, From His Argentina

Interview with Bishop Borys



Or is it a lack of a full appreciation of theosis, in which charity transforms the whole person and energizes the other virtues in its service? And one can see this in the problematic recent canonizations of the patriarchate of Rome, in which heroic virtue is no longer considered with respect to the exercise of the episcopal office.

The "Church of Good Intentions."

CWR Dispatch: Crypto-Monophysitism and the crisis in the Church today by Dr. Adam A. J. DeVille
Why not look at practical reforms to ecclesial structures? Why not honestly discuss power?

Eastern Christian Books: On the History of Sobornost (the Journal)

Eastern Christian Books: On the History of Sobornost (the Journal)

Дивна Любоевич (Сербия). Divna Ljubojević (Serbia) in Saint-Petersburg, 22.01.2017

Friday, February 22, 2019

What sort of communion?

Opus Dei: Letter from the Prelate (14 February 2019)
Monsignor Fernando Ocáriz stresses the importance of unity with those around us, a unity that, since it is the result of love, "is not uniformity, but communion."

Precisely since it is the result of love, this unity is not uniformity, but rather communion. It is a unity in diversity that is shown in the joy of living alongside those who are quite different from us, where we learn to grow through what the others have to offer and we foster an atmosphere of affection around us. Jesus made clear that this unity is a requirement for being effective in passing on the Gospel: “so that the world may believe” (Jn 7:21).

Is he referring to Christians? It would seem so, though the words themselves are open to being interpreted as referring to a population center in which religious pluralism is the norm, or even religious pluralism and ethnic diversity. So what sort of differences are we talking about, the ones that exist among Christians? Differences in personalities? Hobbies?

Symposium Thomisticum 2019 in Rome

Aquinas Philosopher Theologian - July 4-6

God's Dealings With the Minds of Men

Eastern Catholic Theology

Thursday, February 21, 2019

What Would an Byzantine Response Be?

CWR: Celibacy, Chastity, Same-Sex Attraction, Priesthood: Some Necessary Distinctions by Peter M.J. Stravinskas
In the hyper-sexualized society we Christians inhabit, chastity is as counter-cultural today as it was for the early Christians in the decadent Roman Empire.

Fr. Stravinskas refers to this article: “Celibacy and Priests with Same-Sex Attraction” by Ryan M. Williams.

“The Church has always counseled against ordaining those who have same-sex attraction.” On the surface, that would seem to be the case, but a bit of history and psychology might be helpful here. It is undoubtedly true that “the Church has always counseled against ordaining” not “those who have same-sex attraction” but those who act out that attraction. Indeed, “homosexuality” and/or “same-sex attraction” are modern concepts. Prior to the nineteenth century, those categories cannot be found. What made one be considered a homosexual was the fact that one engaged in homosexual activity. Does a man with same-sex attraction who marries a woman contract a valid marriage in the eyes of the Church? Canonical praxis would suggest an affirmative response, which is to say that his “orientation” may make his marriage to a woman more difficult but not necessarily impossible.

Are there however unresolved psychological issues that lie at the origin of the same-sex attraction, which would be an obstacle to effective ministry? This is not a question of a modern "identity" but rather of whether one is psychologically healthy -- even if it is a relative standard (and not the same as holiness or virtuousness) it would seem to be a necessary foundation for public ministry.

(As for the counter-example of the man with SSA who marries a woman -- could not the existence of SSA be later cited as a ground for an annulment, should "things not work out"?)

Christopher Altieri on Day 1

CWR: Day 1 of Vatican summit features peremptory points, harrowing testimonies by Christopher R. Altieri
The highest-level Catholic meeting opened in Rome in the almost surreal conditions created by a heady atmosphere of intense media attention and a swirling maelstrom that threatened to swallow already low expectations.

CNA: Tagle: Confront the ‘stench of filth’ caused by abuse

A Review of the Martel Book

CWR Dispatch: Review: Not much substance In the Closet of the Vatican by Andrea Gagliarducci, Catholic News Agency
The controversial new book by French author and LGBT activist Frederic Martel presents innuendos, but not evidence or documents. It is a gossip-filled, romanticized book, but does not present itself as a scholarly or objective account.

Meanwhile... Pope proposes 21 ‘reflection points’ for discussion at abuse summit

In regard to one point, that broaches the idea of amending the Code of Canon Law to raise the minimum age of marriage for women from 14 to 16, Scicluna clarified that bishops’ conferences already have the power to create their own legislation in regard to the minimum marriageable age, and that many had already raised the age to 16 for both men and women.

“The pope is suggesting making that universal law,” Scicluna said.

By what authority?

Open Letter From Cardinals Burke and Brandmüller to Conferences of Bishops


Rorate Caeli

The 50th Anniversary

From the Jubilee page:

Blessed Pope Paul VI issued a decree February 21, 1969, entitled Quandoquidem Christus, which transformed the status of the Byzantine Catholic Church in the United States, creating the Metropolia of Pittsburgh with two suffragan eparchies — Passaic and Parma. Prior to that, when our ancestors came to this country and brought with them a desire to worship in their own rite and have their own churches, we were part of the Eparchy of Pittsburgh.

The Procession of the Holy Spirit

Orthodox Council of Blachernae 1285:

3. To the same, who say that the Father is, through the Son, the cause of the Spirit, and who cannot conceive the Father as the cause of the hypostasis of the Spirit — giving it existence and being — except through the Son; thus according to them the Son is united to the Father as joint-cause and contributor to the Spirit's existence. This, they say, is supported by the phrase of Saint John of Damascus, "the Father is the projector through the Son of the manifesting Spirit." John of Damascus, De fide orthodoxa, in Kotter, Die Schriften des Johannes von Damaskos II, 36 PG 94.849B): "He Himself [the Father], then, is mind, the depth of reason, begetter of the Word, and, through the Word, projector of the manifesting Spirit." This, however, can never mean what they say, inasmuch as it clearly denotes the manifestation — through the intermediary of the Son — of the Spirit, whose existence is from the Father. For the same John of Damascus would not have said — in the exact same chapter — that the only cause in the Trinity is God the Father, thus denying, by the use of the word "only," the causative principle to the remaining two hypostases. John of Damascus, De fide orthodoxa, in Kotter, Die Schriften des Johannes von Damaskos II, 36 PG 94.849B) Nor would he have, again, said elsewhere, "and we speak, likewise, of the Holy Spirit as the 'Spirit of the Son,' yet we do not speak of the Spirit as from the Son." Ibid., 30 PG 94-832B). For both of these views to be true is impossible. To those who have not accepted the interpretation given to these testimonia by the Fathers, but, on the contrary, perceive them in a manner altogether forbidden by them, we pronounce the above recorded resolution and judgment, we cut them off from the membership of the Orthodox, and we banish them from the flock of the Church of God.

4. To the same, who affirm that the Paraclete, which is from the Frather, has its existence through the Son and from the Son, and who again propose as proof the phrase "the Spirit exists through the Son and from the Son." In certain texts [of the Fathers], the phrase denotes the Spirit's shining forth and manifestation. Indeed, the very Paraclete shines form and is manifest eternally through the Son, in the same way that light shines forth and is manifest through the intermediary of the sun's rays; it further denotes the bestowing, giving, and sending of the Spirit to us. It does not, however, mean that it subsists through the Son and from the Son, and that it receives its being through Him and from Him. For this would mean that the Spirit has the Son as cause and source (exactly as it has the Father), not to say that it has its cause and source more so from the Son than from the Father; for it is said that that from which existence is derived likewise is believed to enrich the source and to be the cause of being. To those who believe and say such things, we pronounce the above resolution and judgment, we cut them off from the membership of the Orthodox, and we banish them from the flock of the Church of God.

Greek and Latin Traditions on the Holy Spirit

General Audience of John Paul II, 29 July 1998 - The Holy Spirit as Source of Communion

Exposition of the Tomus of Faith Against Beccus
From Aristeides Papadakis: Crisis in Byzantium: The Filioque Controversy in the Patriarchate of Gregory II of Cyprus (1283-1289)

If the Holy Spirit gives us life as sons of God and gives life to Christ as man, can it be said that He has the same role with respect to the Son as well? (Is this the thesis of Weinandy?)

Or is the life of the Father and Son together a Divine Hypostasis?

Wipf and Stock

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

The Last Installment of Milbank's Series

Church Life: Justice and Rights in Europe Today by John Milbank
In all the ways that I have indicated earlier in this six-part series, one can readily argue that liberalism, even Kantian liberalism, is not, after all, metaphysically agnostic. To...

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Edward Pentin Collects Some Responses

On the "It's not theology, it's diplomacy, or something" document. By what authority does the bishop of Rome have to make such a statement, with a representative of Islam?

Confusion in the patriarchate of Rome:

NCReg: Does the New Catholic-Muslim Declaration Deviate From Catholic Teaching? by Edward Pentin
The document’s statement that ‘diversity of religions’ is ‘willed by God’ has generated controversy.

What problem?

NCReg: The Church’s Long ‘German Moment’ by Father Raymond J. de Souza
COMMENTARY: The Church in Germany has heavily influenced the post-conciliar era at the Vatican, most notably during the ...

NCReg Symposium: “Abuse and the Way to Healing”

Despite Grave Problems, the Lord Will Never Abandon His Church by Archbishop Carlo Viganò
REGISTER SYMPOSIUM: I continue to have hope, because the Lord will never abandon his Church.

The Rotten Fruit of Secularization by Cardinal Gerhard Müller
REGISTER SYMPOSIUM: Only he who lives according to the commandments of God can be a good shepherd and a model for the flock.

Love, Care and Justice Must Be Paramount by Cardinal Wilfrid Napier
REGISTER SYMPOSIUM: “To each according to his needs” is a principle worth considering.

A Proliferation of Spiritualities?

Fr. Bouyer would have something to say about this. For that matter, so would Fr. Gabriel Bunge:

Another problem is that Christians have different personalities. Not all are given over to outward expressions of heartfelt piety even while they have deep faith and knowledge of God. Karl Rahner—who I suppose could be considered a pietist, even though he regarded pietism as exclusively Protestant—once said, “The Christian of the future will be a mystic or simply will not be.” That’s certainly within the spirit of pietism, but the problem is that mysticism is difficult for many. We should all attempt to engage in meditative and contemplative prayer, but different personalities gravitate towards different spiritualities. Carmelites are not Benedictines, and Dominicans are not Jesuits, and Franciscans are not Augustinians. Mysticism, above all, is a divine gift, and as such shouldn’t be expected of all.

The Problem of Pietism by Dr. Leroy Huizenga
We must overcome an overemphasis on religion as orthodoxy assenting to true doctrines while also resisting the reduction of our religion to feelings and activism.

"Aquinas the Biblical Theologian"

Forgot about this year's conference at AMU. Schedule and list of speakers here.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

A Dissertation on Gennadios Scholarios

Fordham University: A Greek Thomist: Providence in Gennadios Scholarios
by Matthew Christopher Briel, Fordham University

More on Newman

CWR: Newman’s Canonization: A Summons to Truth by Edward Short

Once the news came out today that John Henry Newman (1801-90) would soon be made a saint, after the Vatican announced that the pope had formally approved a second miracle attributed to the great convert’s [...]

Now that's a cultus!

St. John Henry Newman?

CNA: Pope Francis approves canonization of John Henry Newman

As much as I like Newman, I'd be content with him remaining a Blessed until a local cult developed, rather than having another declaration from the modern Roman saint-making machine.

Faith, Natural Law And The Common Good

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

The Feast of St. Thomas Aquinas in Toulouse

Traditionalist Latin Liturgical Theology


What notion of sacrifice?
What is needed, rather, is to see the Mass through the lens of the Office. We need to see the Mass as a sweet-smelling sacrifice of praise offered up in psalms, hymns, and spiritual canticles, thanking God for His great glory, adoring, placating, supplicating Him. Only after that does it make sense to see it as a banquet to which we are invited. We are invited to a sacrifice of which we may then partake if we are properly disposed; we reap spiritual fruit in proportion to how well we have been prepared by the very liturgical action in which we have participated.

What notion of gift?
The Mass is not a utilitarian process designed to maximize the efficient delivery of goods. The Mass is not, as such, a communion service. It is a complex ceremony of repentance, adoration, petition, and thanksgiving, with a sacramental sacrifice at its core. It was given to us by our Lord and His Church as the highest form of prayer, which prepares for, culminates in, and gives thanks for the gift of His Most Holy Body and Blood. It does not begin and end with that gift.

Throw in some mystical bride spirituality, too, which admittedly can be found in some of the Eastern fathers like Origen and St. Maximos.
Think of it this way: If you were Mary of Bethany, sitting at the feet of Jesus and soaking in His words, would you want to sit there quietly, for quite some time, preparing yourself deeply for the spiritual marriage with Him — “the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife hath prepared herself” (Rev 19:7) — or would you want to listen for a few minutes, jump up, give Him a hug and a kiss, and be off to the next thing?

Mass is a service of prayer:
In short: the Mass is not just about communion. It is a many-sided service of prayer
But you don't need to understand it to pray it, because "Mystery" is important too. Or, just use a bilingual missal!

Let us consider this fact. It would have been a lot “simpler” if Jesus had remained among us under His natural appearances until the end of time. He surely could have done that; the Ascension was not necessary, in the strict logical sense of necessity.

What does 'logical' necessity have to do with practical reason? It was 'morally' necessary, means to end. (John 16:7)

Monday, February 11, 2019

Enthronement of His Beatitude, Epifaniy, Metropolitan of Kyiv and All Ukraine

TCH clip


TCH clip from 3 weeks ago

From the Common Good to Public Order (and Back)

Gladden Pappin

Gerard Wegemer on Shakespeare, the Book of Sir Thomas More, and the Common Good

Delivery of the Tomos, January 6


Signs it in Constantinople. clip

Ethiopian and Assyrian Ecclesiologies of the First Millenium

What do they have to say about the place of St. Peter among the apostles and the relation of this datum to the bishop of Rome? Anything?

Rod Dreher: The Age Of Antichrist by ROD DREHER

When the papacy, the second principle of Latin ecclesiology seems like it is about to fail as a principle because of a bad pope, Latins declare that we are in the end times. Maybe they should just reconsider their ecclesiology and how rooted it is in Tradition.

Saturday, February 09, 2019

A Manifesto of Faith by Cardinal Müller

CWR Dispatch/CNA: Cardinal Müller delivers ‘manifesto’ on Catholic teaching
“Today, many Christians are no longer even aware of the basic teachings of the Faith, so there is a growing danger of missing the path to eternal life.”

Cyril and Methodius

Good for Bishop Schneider.

CWR: The Gift of Filial Adoption by Bishop Athanasius Schneider
The Christian Faith is the only valid and the only God-willed religion.

A response to Pope Francis? That document here.

Friday, February 08, 2019

Albert the Great Summer School 2019

Rorate Caeli

Cardinal Burke's Website

Here (h/t to Fr. Z).

More Ecclesial Politics

Sandro Magister: Who’s In Charge At the Italian Episcopal Conference? The Hostile Takeover of Fr. Spadaro

A Latin Ecclesiology

Crisis Magazine: Why Vatican II’s Definition of Church Makes Sense by CASEY CHALK

If that explains subsistit in, there is still the question of what this means for non-Catholics. Hipp’s position is that these communities possess “parts or properties or actions of the Catholic Church,” that whatever salvific power they possess flow from their relative communion with the Catholic Church, that they possess “nothing distinctive” per se in reference to “salvific mediatory value.” In effect, whatever of Christ these communities retain, it is solely through Catholicism. Moreover, because they are not the Catholic Church, they necessarily have defects. Among these include ecclesial properties, sacraments, the Petrine office, an integral profession of faith, and unity. Does calling these communities deficient undermine ecumenical dialogue? By no means! Rather, it allows interlocutors to clarify and take seriously theological and ecclesial differences, while reciprocating an acknowledgement of others’ real status as Christians.

Thursday, February 07, 2019

The Fall of Rome

CNA/NCReg: St. Paul VI’s feast to be celebrated May 29

I'll reserve that date to commemorate the fall of Constantinople.

Fr. Z: WDTPRS: The new Latin Collect for Paul VI – a key phrase hunted up

Keep Thy Mind in Hell


Wednesday, February 06, 2019

The Saints of Scotland

OrthoChristian: Saints of Scotland by Monk Nicodemus (Jones)

Sunday, February 03, 2019

Clericalism and Synodality? Not the Issues.

CWR: Pope Francis misses the mark in focusing on clericalism and synodality by Christopher R. Altieri
A recent essay by papal biographer Austen Ivereigh about Pope Francis’ approach to abuse crisis fails to recognize the pressing need to start with institutional reform.

Eastern Christian Books: Barbara Crostini and Ines Murzaku on Greek Monasticism in Southern Italy

Eastern Christian Books: Barbara Crostini and Ines Murzaku on Greek Monasticism in Southern Italy

Pius X vs. Modernism

from Fr. John Perricone - Imaginative Conservative, originally published in Crisis.

Saturday, February 02, 2019

The Purification of the Virgin Mary

Latins Gonna Latin

From Analysis from Fr. Louis Bouyer’s 1978 essay that may apply today, an excerpt of a lecture given by the then newly-elected superior general of the FSSP:

“There is no possibility to get to Heaven without being united to the Pope,” said Fr. Andrzej Komorowski, the recently-elected Superior General of the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter (FSSP), a Society of Apostolic Life of Pontifical right that celebrates the Traditional Latin Mass.

I shouldn't be shocked that he would hold this position but I hadn't thought about the FSSP for some time.

St. Neilos of Rossano

Crux: Interview with Ines Angeli and Fr. Douglas Milewski

Friday, February 01, 2019

A New Persoal Line of Inquiry

How is neo-Platonism to be distinguished from Aristotelianism?

Creation and Participation: The Metaphysical Structure of the World-God Relation in Aquinas by Byron Stefan Hagan

"The Transcendentality of Ens-Esse and the Ground of Metaphysics" by Cornelio Fabro
International Philosophical Quarterly 6 (3):389-427 (1966)

"The Intensive Hermeneutics of Thomistic Philosophy: The Notion of Participation"
Cornelio Fabro and B. M. Bonansea
The Review of Metaphysics
Vol. 27, No. 3, A Commemorative Issue. Thomas Aquinas, 1224-1274 (Mar., 1974), pp. 449-491

"Cornelio Fabro on the Distinction and Composition of Essence and Esse in the Metaphysics of Thomas Aquinas" by John F. Wippel
Review of Metaphysics 68 (3):573-592 (2015)

"Was St. Thomas Aquinas a Platonist?" by Luis Cortest
The Thomist: A Speculative Quarterly Review
The Catholic University of America Press
Volume 52, Number 2, April 1988
pp. 209-219

Neoplatonism and Christian Thought

IVE website for Cornelio Fabro

Is working properly?

Sacrifice in Classical Protestantism?

February 1, 2019 / by Peter J. Leithart
Protestants can offer a fundamental challenge to liberal order only insofar as we retain, and enhance, the sacrificial dimension of classical Protestantism.

Miles Coverdale's Goostly Psalmes and Spirituall Songes