Today the Vortex published an interview with His Excellency Bishop Rene Gracida, Bishop Emeritus of Corpus Christi. The main theme of this interview is the need for the laity (meaning most of us) to rise up to save our Church. As an historical example, he mentions the ancient Christians shouting down Arius as he uttered heresy from the pulpit (stating Jesus isn't divine).
What caught my ear immediately at the 5:28 mark was the bishop's declaration that it is "out and out heresy" to state that God's essential attribute is mercy, stating that this heresy was on a par with that of Arius. Bishop Gracida outright condemns the Kasperite's claim, stating that God's main attribute is love. His explanation was brilliant; while the Three Persons love on another, they don't have mercy on each other for mercy implies sinfulness of the recipient.
With that in mind, we must bear in mind Pope Francis' excessive focus on mercy to the expense of God's other characteristics (such as justice). In fact, he wrote a book called "The Name of God is Mercy". Consider all that is entailed in that whopper of a title. To name someone or something is to exercise an authority over them; that's apparent throughout Scripture. Adam names the animals. A parent names a child. So now Pope Francis names God?? Really??? I've written copiously about how the Pope seems to think that the Church has been deficient with true mercy; please read here for a review for I don't want to rehash all that in this post.
Getting back to the interview, the bishop says we need to stop "suffering in silence" (at 10:20). We need to object - loudly. Of course we'll create an uproar. So what? The late Mother Angelica stated that "if you're not a thorn in somebody's side, you aren't doing Christianity right". I'll post the video beneath the jump break but I have more to say below that.
Recall that the post-synodal exhortation is set to be released this week - April 8 to be precise. The staff of Catholic Family News believes that this will be a time for faithful Catholics to pray, know and learn the truth, and to resist. If this exhortation is half the pig-slop that it promises to be, they are correct. Of course let's forget about the "tone"; while respecting people we can and must speak unabashedly.
Along these lines there are two individuals who might well serve as models. We read about the first one in the Old Testament, in Numbers 25:1-10. He is Phineas, grandson of Aaron and son of Eleazer the high priest. The Israelites were being punished by God for their dalliances with Gentiles with a plague. A high-ranking Jew brought into his home a Midianite woman "in the sight of all". Phineas saw it and killed them both. God came to Moses to commend Phineas, stating that his action averted the plague and that his priestly line would be perpetual. Now consider that the man brought in his concubine "in the sight of all", implying that Moses and Eleazer saw it too. They didn't act, although they were the leaders at the time. When Phineas acted, do you suppose that he might have thought that his actions might have put him out of good graces with Moses and Eleazer? He didn't care for he "was jealous for his God".
The second is one of the Roman martyrs - Tarcisius. He was entrusted with taking the Eucharist to Christians who were imprisoned. On his way to the prison he was accosted by young men who wanted to desecrate the Eucharist. He wouldn't allow it and consequently they stoned him to death. Would we have the courage to prevent desecration by a pro-abort receiving Holy Communion? "We're not clergy", some might object. Neither was Saint Tarcisius. He was twelve years old. So what are our excuses again?
In subsequent posts we'll be exploring specifics. It's understood that we always are prayerful for from God is where we'll draw strength and direction.