If You Can’t Say Anything Nice…

Discussion in 'The Signs of the Times' started by BrianK, Jul 26, 2016.

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  1. BrianK

    BrianK Powers Staff Member

    If You Can’t Say Anything Nice…

    Please excuse me if this veers too far into stream-of-consciousness. I’m very, very tired.

    I left home on July 5th to see to some personal business on the other side of the country, and I just got back last night. My wife and I spent 19 days away from home, drove over 5,000 miles, all with seven kids and a dog. You’ve probably noticed that posting has been lighter than usual. Now you know why.

    And while it wasn’t a vacation, it did give me some time to think. Lots of time behind the wheel, a good bit of time engaged in physical labor in the unforgiving summer heat. Long conversations. Unfamiliar views. Evenings watching thunder storms roll through, a glass of good whiskey in hand.


    It seems like every time I had a minute to check the news, or my social media accounts, there was more bad news. All my friends are either upset or arguing about things. Politics. Islamic attacks. Corruption. Censorship. Shootings. Civil unrest. And of course, the endless assaults of the agents of FrancisChurch™ on authentic Catholicism.

    Many of the days I sat down to write something, I just couldn’t. I don’t know about all of you, but the constant torrent of negativity is…well, I’m not exaggerating when I say it turns my stomach. I feel that it is a duty to combat what is happening wherever and however we can, but sometimes it feels as though all we’re doing is shouting into the storm. Sometimes, when you can’t say anything nice, it really is better not to say anything.

    I keep finding myself thinking about the popular MacGuffin in thriller movies: there’s a video, or some kind of data, on a DVD or flash drive, and all that the protagonist needs to do is get it into the hands of the media, to broadcast it to the masses, and the revelations it contains will turn the tide. Everyone is trying to kill them, as they run, jump, slide, drive, swim, and generally engage in 90 minutes of kinetic activity, at last dragging their beaten, bloody body into a TV studio somewhere, where suddenly, triumphant, the denouement is accomplished through dissemination of the vital secret and the villains are unmasked for who they truly are. The heroes have saved the day, proving once again that knowledge is power.

    But here we are, day after day, unmasking the villains. We show the true agenda of the pope, the bishops, the Islamists, the heretical theologians, and then…nothing happens.

    People — the vast majority of people, though not all — look ignominy in the face and at most, they simply shrug and turn away. Those who are not indifferent attack the messenger, as though the fact that these things are happening are our problem. Some merely shut their eyes as tightly as they can, plug their ears, and say, again and again, “Not happening! Not happening! Not happening!”

    Frankly, I am trying to figure out where to go from here. We can’t not report on what’s going on, but there needs to be something else. Something that gives hope. People write to me and say, “I see it, but what do we do next? We’re alone. Nobody cares.”

    I don’t know how to answer this question, other than to say, “Keep the faith. Trust that God has a plan.” I believe this. But some days, the tendrils of doubt creep in, and worry tugs at me until I just want to throw up my hands. I feel beaten, like the loser in a thrown game. No matter how many punches I land, it doesn’t affect the outcome.

    This is a long war, and there is no rest. There is only fighting. Every day, some new battle. Every day, some new affront or outrage. It’s tiresome. It steals away joy, contentment, and peace.

    I want to say that my travels this month have brought answers. Instead, I think, they’ve mostly brought new questions: how should we change our tactics? What can we do that is more effective than what we’re doing now? How do we fight against that sense of oppressive despair that seems always at our heels?

    One thing I did learn on this trip is that more of my energy needs to be focused on the people closest to me. The battle can become all-consuming. It can feel so important that it’s easy to neglect spouse or children. This is a deception.

    I also think that it is important to dig deeper, to sound the depths of the well of our Faith, to begin, again, focusing on what is good about Catholicism, instead of what is being done to strip it bare. These things seem to exist in tension; many balk at anything positive, as though it serves only to distract from what is most pressing. But we can only stare so long into the fire. We need to see beyond it, to keep going.

    I ask in earnest for your prayers for guidance from the Holy Spirit. Guidance that will help me to lead this publication where it is intended to go in the midst of this unrelenting storm. Exhaustion is no excuse for giving up. We must press on, we must find the strength, we must ask for the grace.

    We are all weary. Let us find solace in each other, in the loving embrace of Our Mother, and in Him.
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  2. Harper

    Harper Guest


    Thank you for posting this. I am only vaguely familiar with OnePeterFive, and now I feel I ought to bookmark it and check back more frequently.
    BrianK likes this.
  3. BrianK

    BrianK Powers Staff Member

    I think we're at a turning point in the present crisis in the Church.

    People who have been open to the Truth have had their eyes opened to the reality that is upon us: the pope is teaching grave error, in an off-the-cuff manner, that threatens the sacramental system of the Church and Her traditional uncompromising stance on moral issues, especially those involving traditional marriage and the rights that are exclusive to sacramental marriage.

    The evidence is all around us, it is overwhelming, and cannot in good faith be ignored any longer, because the eternal salvation of souls and the foundational truths of Catholicism are at stake. In these circumstances, silence is not an option; defending the Faith, even if it means pointing out the errors of the pope himself, is a necessity, and there is no sin in correcting error in such circumstances.

    It must by done with charity, tact, and prayer, something that has been lacking at times due to zeal to protect Christ in the Holy Eucharist and the Truths of the Faith, as well as our egos and pride, and this may necessitate recourse to the confessional at times, but it must urgently be done nonetheless.

    Unfortunately, the attempts to sound an alarm at the enormity of this crisis have lead to a hardening of positions; those who think, admirably, that they are "defending the pope from attack" dig in their heals even harder, castigating and consigning those defending the Faith to perdition along the way.

    But that cannot keep those aware of our peril from walking on this difficult, narrow path. The time to help our brothers in the faith to see the peril about them is almost past. If our efforts are not successful in their regard, they must be entrusted to the merciful hands of Our Lord and His Mother. They know who was trying to be faithful; their hands are bigger and more efficacious than anything we could say or do, so we do so in confidence.

    At this point many of us are feeling the strain of this prolonged effort, though many indeed have woken up and thanked us for our efforts, especially in the face of serious opposition and condemnation.

    So the time is almost upon us where we must gather our small remnant army, and move forward. Harder battles lie ahead.

    What do we do now, changing gears after such a long concerted type of engagement? Get ready for the next phase of the battle. We don't really know yet what form that battle will take. That is in all likelihood, merciful.

    Of what will that preparation exist? More of the same - heroic virtue and living and practicing the Faith more ardently than ever in our life. Our prayer life must take precedence over our active life and our efforts to defend the Faith.

    We must be willing to live and die - maybe literally - for Jesus Christ and His Church's Eternal Truths.
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2016
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  4. Fatima

    Fatima Powers

    So one must ask at this juncture. Where is this battle that you speak of occurring? What has changed in your personal circle in life (the church and community around you) with comments made by Pope Francis? I cannot find one example in my community that has changed the way of life or the separating of faith and ideologies either within the local church, or work place or my home. What in your personal world been tossed away by what Pope Francis has said? Has your family disowned you? Has your neighbors stopped saying hello to you? Personally, if your world has changed, then perhaps you are not living in the peace and joy that comes from ones relationship with the Lord. I personally do not know one person who has been changed by what Pope Francis has said contrary to the faith. Are you perhaps trying to make something out of nothing in your own environment for sensational reasons? I think we are called to prayer in a more intimate way. We are called to sacrifice more frequently in our life, but It matters not to my journey what Pope Francis has said or not said. I know my faith and I will continue to speak truth when asked. If I need to explain the faith to my friends or co-workers I will, but I will not run around like 'chicken little' saying the 'sky is falling the sky is falling'. I think it is time to take a deep breath and know God is in charge of his church. He has a plan. He wants us to remain faithful and remain in the state of grace. If one is so extremely rattled at the onset of the storm, what will one be like in the middle of the storm? Be a peace and like St. Padre Pio said, "pray, trust and don't worry".
    a wee one, Jeanne, Serena and 4 others like this.
  5. Light

    Light Guest

    "but It matters not to my journey what Pope Francis has said or not said"

    Fatima, it matters because, some of what is said is understood by culture as conflicting directly with established doctrine. I believe we can't or should not try to be immune to the consequences of these ambiguities.

    I agree prayer is the only recourse, but it is also helpful to know we are not alone in consternation with the way the Church appears to be heading.

    God Bless.
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  6. Joe Crozier

    Joe Crozier Guest

    As Padraig quotes - in the end we shall be judged on love - but truth without love is cruelty. In that case it is neither truth nor love. How can we love better?
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  7. fallen saint

    fallen saint Baby steps :)

    Saint Fatima


  8. PotatoSack

    PotatoSack Powers

    I am confused as to what this battle is. So you think you have been in a battle here on the forum to convince all to embrace your stance on the situation within the church and with the pope? What is this next phase you speak of?
    Jeanne likes this.
  9. Sorrowful Heart

    Sorrowful Heart Principalities

    Here is why it matters...

    The Pope is the head of the Mystical Body of Christ. Graces flow through the entire body of the Church starting at the head. Just like in a family where the Father is the head, and graces or curses flow through him to the rest of his family depending on his actions.

    If the Pope begins to alter the course of the Mystical Body of Christ towards darkness, then the Graces that flow from God begin to gradually cease. This has a huge impact on the spirituality and daily reality in the world. I have noticed a great increase in the turmoil around the world as of late, and I suspect much of it has to do with the deviance from the CDF happening in the RCC.

    We appear to be heading into WWIII at an alarming pace, and terrorist attacks are now happening multiple times daily. With an every increasing amount of sin building up in the world, we need all the Grace we can get. This is why we are told to pray the rosary repeatedly by Our Lady in all the Apparitions.
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2016
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  10. fallen saint

    fallen saint Baby steps :)

    Graces and curses flow through him. Amazing. Grace gradually ceases...where do people come up with this stuff.


  11. Sorrowful Heart

    Sorrowful Heart Principalities

    The Mystical body of Christ has the Pope at its head. He is the representative of Our King Jesus Christ.

    Give me a few minutes I will find it... but I find it amazing that you condemn before asking questions
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2016
  12. fallen saint

    fallen saint Baby steps :)

    im sorry...i just get upset when the spirituality of grace is so off base.

    But i have to remember this is a forum with different Levels of spirituality.

    Brother al
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  13. Sorrowful Heart

    Sorrowful Heart Principalities

    Its actually proving harder than I thought... I listen to many talks from Priests on Sensus Fidelium and they go over this all the time.

    I will try to find you writings about this, but I will explain essentially what I know. Just like in the Garden of Eden we inherited the curse of original sin from Adam and Eve. In the OT it is mentioned how the Sins of the Father fall on the Children as well for up to 4 generations.

    Numbers 14:18

    The LORD is slow to anger, abounding in love and forgiving sin and rebellion. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished; he punishes the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation.'

    It is also mentioned that the Merits and Graces extend for many generations.

    Exodus 3:47

    "I lavish unfailing love to a thousand generations. I forgive iniquity, rebellion, and sin. But I do not excuse the guilty. I lay the sins of the parents upon their children and grandchildren; the entire family is affected--even children in the third and fourth generations."

    Now with baptism the sins are cleansed and curses/demons exorcised, but that doesn't mean that a Fathers actions in the family stop once a child is baptized. This is why it is important for a Father to be spiritually active in the family, because the graces extend to his children. So do the curses of his Sin.

    It should also be noted that family typically follows the faith of what ever the Father believes over 90% of the time.

    • If a child is the first in the family to become a Christian, there’s a 3.7 percent probability that the rest of the family will become Christians
    • If mom is the first in the family to become a Christian, there’s a 17 percent probability that the rest of the family will follow
    • If dad is the first in the family to become a Christian, there’s a 93 percent probability that everyone else in the family will follow his lead

    Last edited: Jul 26, 2016
  14. Sorrowful Heart

    Sorrowful Heart Principalities

    Awesome read for fathers – Fr. Ripperger’s Parental Roles and Leadership December 2, 2013

    One of the biggest crises afflicting the culture, and the Church, is the utter collapse of male responsibility and leadership. Too often, men simply fail to perform the duties their vocations require. In fact, it seems as each generation comes around, this problem only grows worse and worse. We all know the scandal that almost half of all babies born in the United States are born to women without husbands. This is simply one example of the crisis. There are myriad more.

    Of course, none of this is to say that men are solely responsible – women have certainly, in a collective sense, done a tremendous amount to help destroy the family as an institution, to erode male leadership, to attack the traditional family model, etc. But even with that being the case, it is STILL men’s duty to lead, to overcome all that, and keep sacrificing for the greater good. By and large, men have just stopped doing so.

    I don’t want to turn this into a diatribe against men – part of the reason for my railing is simply awareness of my own inadequacies – but I do it to highlight a very valuable resource that was forwarded me by occasional reader TB, who sent me Fr. Chad Ripperger’s paper on Parental Roles and Responsibilities. This is a great piece for all parents, but especially fathers. Some excerpts highlighted by TB:

    Whenever a father fails to pray, suffer and do good works in order to merit graces for his wife and family, he fails in the most important task of husband and father. …When a father sees a moral or spiritual fault in his wife or child, he fails to provide for them if he merely temporarily admonishes them. Rather, he must spiritually do what he can to merit grace as well as direct his children and wife through his commands to lead them to virtue. (You can see the priesthood of the father in this respect.)

    The father, by virtue of the office of fatherhood, has rights over his wife and children, and so when the wife and children submit to the father, they enjoy the fruits of those rights, i.e. spiritual providence and protection. The wife should not view her subjection to her husband as a loss of freedom or control, but as a form of protection and providence, i.e. by means to her own holiness and spiritual safety.” [This is a great and important point. We all receive great graces from faithfully submitting to those in authority over us, painful as it may be at times. This fact reveals a fundamental problem with our current cultural model of liberty and the exultation of the individual, which constantly carps against authority and tries (successfully) to subvert it. I’m sure this statement will be unpopular with some, however, but we must remember that the father was instituted by God as not just the head of the family, but a figurative priest in charge of the domestic flock. This is a deadly serious responsibility. ]

    “The merits of a father to ward off the demonic are more powerful by virtue of his office as husband than of his wife’s. Since the demons must respect the order of authority, the father enters more efficaciously into the spiritual warfare with the demonic since ultimately they must submit to the order of authority established by God.”

    He (father) must protect his authority in order to protect his wife and it is here that we can see the massive failure that has led to our feminized culture. The collapse of fatherhood is NOT due to women, it is due to men. Men have not been men, women have been allowed to take positions God never intended them. Men are responsible for the feminist movement[I would say, yes, this is true. But it is the culture of “enlightenment” with corrosive rhetoric of unlimited individual rights (without concomitant duties) that undergirds men’s failure to perform their duties. In short, enlightenment “liberal” thinking eventually became so pervasive that answers to feminist demands were lacking and men eventually retreated from their roles as natural leaders of families instituted by God. I think there is plenty of blame to go around for this most invasive development.]

    “Men lose their authority by (a) not observing their proper authority of the wife over the children as mother; (b) by not consulting her when prudence dictates and (c) not treating her with the dignity that is due her, either as a human or according her to office as wife. …Men often experience a certain rebellion from their wives because of mistreatment or a lack of legitimate concern for their wives.” He lists examples of when it’s prudent to consult the wife on Page 10.

    “If the husband without good reason contravenes the mother’s governance of her children, he weakens his own governance.” (It’s crucial to be on the same page in regards to raising children.)

    In respect to the office of wife…when the wife takes care of the home and makes the meals, in justice the husband owes her gratitude and not ridicule or disrespect. Each time he fails to act in a manner that shows gratitude, he demeans the office of wife and thereby, disrespects the office which God himself has established; in a phrase, he sins.

    “If the husband is incapable in fulfilling some aspect of the leadership of the home, the wife may take over if necessary. (Father says it must be a grave and serious matter for the wife to assume authority.)

    If he fails in his responsibility, he will pay a greater price than his wife. In this respect, it is easier for a woman to save her soul than a man, because original sin has left men with a wound of not wanting to take responsibility, at time, for his family because the task is arduous. (It’s much easier to spend the weekends on the lay-z-boy watching football then tending to the spiritual and temporal needs of one’s family.)

  15. Sorrowful Heart

    Sorrowful Heart Principalities

  16. Sorrowful Heart

    Sorrowful Heart Principalities

    So as you can see if the Holy Father is the head of the Church, what he does has great affects on the rest of the body of the Church.

    As a side note it concerns me greatly since lightning hit St. Peters Basilica just moments after Pope Benedict the XVI abdicated the Throne of Peter, it was a very bad sign. Since then the Church has been in a much faster downward spiral.
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2016
    Light likes this.
  17. fallen saint

    fallen saint Baby steps :)

    Has nothing to do with what you said...but like i said.

    Your remarks on grace are off.

    But i am done debating.

    Brother al

    Maybe the lightning was a good sign.

    Too much
  18. davidtlig

    davidtlig Guest

    Don't let them wear you down, fallen saint. There is little point in engaging in 'to and fros' but your contributions are always appreciated and relevant. There are very few members that are prepared to keep responding to the relentless postings against the Pope and his pontificate.

    I thing the lightning over St Peter's was probably very significant but it will be only much later that we will see the significance. The opposition to Pope Francis, a self evidently good and holy man, is a very worrying sign. But Jesus is renewing His Church and we just need to remain faithful to Him.
  19. fallen saint

    fallen saint Baby steps :)

    Heres my take on the Pope. He has touched the mystical. Once you touch the mystical...your whole spirituality changes. I think He has broken through to the mystical and God has him on a mission. He is so devote about prayer, the Eucharist, the sacraments and battling the created one. I think he knows we are in the final battle. We might not think it, but i think he knows much more then he is telling us. I am a traditionalist...gregorian chant and incense is my favorite. I have seen the power of prayer. But i truly believe Our Holy Father knows time is short and trying to save the masses to the best of his ability. He has 2000 years of spiritual phenomena and prophecy in the Vatican library. Most of the secrets of God and the world have been documented in the library. There must be 5 to 10 true mystics that he has knowledge of. So he understands God in a much different light.

    As of today, i still haven't seen our Pope fall away from his papal duties. I think he is definitely doing what God is asking him todo.

    The question we should be asking is what happens after the Holy Year of Mercy. Our Holy Father is preparing us for something.

    Brother al
  20. Sorrowful Heart

    Sorrowful Heart Principalities

    Can you elaborate on how what I just said had nothing to do with what I said earlier about grace? Do me the charity please. Its one thing to say my remarks are off, its another to elaborate why they are off.
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