Regína sacratíssimi Rosárii, ora pro nobis!

Ave Maria!

Eighteenth Sunday after Pentecost—22 September A.D. 2013

Ordinary of the Mass
Mass Text - Latin
Mass Text - English
Decorum (.doc)


“The multitude ... feared, and glorified God who had given such power to men.”[1]

    Some weeks ago I mentioned “cultural Marxism” and the idea that Marxists have generally (but not completely) abandoned the need for wide scale violence to spread their ideology—and have given themselves over to the undermining of the institutions of society through “political correctness” and unreasonable criticism.  As Patrick Buchannan wrote:

    Rather than seize power first and impose cultural revolution from above, [Antonio] Gramsci argued, Marxists in the West must first change the culture; then power would fall into their laps like ripened fruit. But to change the culture would require a “long march through the institutions”-the arts, cinema, theater, schools, colleges, seminaries, newspapers, magazines, and the new electronic medium, radio. One by one, each had to be captured and converted and politicized into an agency of revolution. Then the people could be slowly educated to understand and even welcome the revolution.

    Gramsci urged his fellow Marxists to form popular fronts with western intellectuals who shared their contempt for Christianity and bourgeois culture and who shaped the minds of the young.[2]

    It seems ever more clear with each passing day, that one of the institutions through which the Marxists have marched is Holy Mother Church.  Today, Catholic bishops routinely support redistribution of wealth, socialized medicine, illegal immigration, gun confiscation, global government, a world monetary system, and every left-wing scheme of the United Nations.  Most will balk when a socialist effort requires the violation of Catholic moral principles—like Obamacare with its “abortion/contraception mandate”—but will turn a blind eye when Catholic Relief Services funds organizations that perform such “services.”  “86% of Catholic Relief Services’ domestic grants in 2012 went to pro-contraception groups.”[3]

    Most traditional Catholics will shake their heads when hearing such things, but then will shrug their shoulders when they ask themselves what they can do about it.  A partial answer is to be sure that none of your money goes to such things—be very careful about how you respond to requests for contributions by allegedly Catholic organizations.

    I would suggest, too, that you are already resisting the “long march” against Western civilization simply by attending Holy Mass and worshipping in a traditional Catholic Church.  You see, a significant effort has been made against the Church by making it appear silly, and by trivializing the importance of Jesus Christ who is always at the center of authentic Catholic worship.  The dancing bishops of World Youth Day could not have convinced young people that the bishops were “cool” (or whatever today’s adjective might be).[4]  The distribution of Holy Communion from plastic drinking cups convinced no one of the Kingship of Christ.[5]

    But the trivialization of Jesus Christ goes on under circumstances that most would consider far more normal.  Today, I am going to pick on two things that are very simple—two things of which most of us are somewhat guilty, and which we can correct with very little effort.

    Growing up before Vatican II, I can remember girls and women attending Mass in well-made dresses, always modest, wearing hats, and sometimes gloves.  Boys and men wore suits and ties, even in summer very few did away with their neck-ties.  Now some might say that these people were showing off—but they would be wrong!  They dressed in this way to show reverence for Jesus Christ—indeed, they dressed in the way that all Americans dressed to show respect and reverence, and to indicate that they believed that what they were doing was important.

    But the, in the 1960s, the “long march” came up the center aisle of the Church, and dresses and suits gave way to bowling jackets worn over t-shirts with chinos or blue jeans, and of course sneakers.  The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass began to be attended in the way one might go to play in the park.

    Growing up before the “long march” I remember when Catholic Churches were places of nearly absolute silence both before and after Mass.  Everyone respected everyone else’s right to engage in peaceful meditation before the Holy Sacrifice and in quiet thanksgiving following It.   If you had something you just had to say, you went outside to say it.  Even note passing beyond the person next to you seemed to be out of place.  It took something of the magnitude of a fire to spark a conversation before or after Holy Mass.

    The central reason for this quiet was the universal recognition that Jesus Christ, God, the Son of God was in the tabernacle on the altar—and that Jesus Christ had the absolute right to everyone’s attention.  No one who understood this reality would want to spend this time interfering with someone else’s prayers to discuss their after-Mass dinner plans, or what they thought of yesterday’s football game.

    What I am trying to say is that the carefree attitude introduced into the Church, in the past fifty years or so, has had the effect of trivializing the most important reality of Western civilization—people come to church with a far diminished awe and respect for Jesus Christ.  And if they have little regard for Jesus Christ when in His Real Presence, how much less regard will they have for Him in the everyday workings of society?  Why would we expect people to behave as Christians in the far more difficult areas of life?

    So I am going to ask all of you to make a statement against cultural Marxism and in favor of Christ the King.  When you come for Sunday Mass, please dress in the way you would for lunch at the Governor’s Mansion, or as you would for a job interview, or for seeing someone else you consider to be of top importance—for no one is more important than Jesus Christ, Whom you will meet face to face in Holy Mass.

    And, make a statement, also, by spending a few minutes before and after Holy Mass in silent prayer.  At a minimum, respect the right of others to enjoy the quiet.  Even if you absolutely must get that first cup of coffee, get it quietly, and don’t begin the conversations before everyone in the church has finished his prayers.

    Thank you!  God love you!  And long live Christ the King!

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