In Church Today

Discussion in 'On prayer itself' started by padraig, Feb 13, 2021.

  1. padraig

    padraig New Member

    In order to see what the Church will look like, this brand new house, in the future we require vision. Very few people have such vision. Pope Benedict was a man with such vision and has described this Future Church.

    https://www.crossroadsinitiative.com/media/articles/the-church-of-the-future-josef-ratzinger/

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    The Church of the Future – Josef Ratzinger

    In 1969, then Fr. Josef Ratzinger, theologian and peritus (theological advisor to the bishops) at the Second Vatican Council, predicted that the Church of the future would be much smaller than it was in the sixties, at least in the western, developed world. But, the future Pope Benedict XVI went on to say, the purification of attachments to privilege would lead to a stronger, more spiritual church of faith, a “little flock” more able to evangelize the world.

    She will no longer be able to inhabit many of the edifices she built in prosperity. As the number of her adherents diminishes . . . she will lose many of her social privileges. . . As a small society, [the Church] will make much bigger demands on the initiative of her individual members….

    It will be hard-going for the Church, for the process of crystallization and clarification will cost her much valuable energy. It will make her poor and cause her to become the Church of the meek . . . The process will be long and wearisome as was the road from the false progressivism on the eve of the French Revolution — when a bishop might be thought smart if he made fun of dogmas and even insinuated that the existence of God was by no means certain . . . But when the trial of this sifting is past, a great power will flow from a more spiritualized and simplified Church.

    Men in a totally planned world will find themselves unspeakably lonely. If they have completely lost sight of God, they will feel the whole horror of their poverty. Then they will discover the little flock of believers as something wholly new. They will discover it as a hope that is meant for them, an answer for which they have always been searching in secret.

    And so it seems certain to me that the Church is facing very hard times. The real crisis has scarcely begun. We will have to count on terrific upheavals. But I am equally certain about what will remain at the end: not the Church of the political cult, which is dead already, but the Church of faith. She may well no longer be the dominant social power to the extent that she was until recently; but she will enjoy a fresh blossoming and be seen as man’s home, where he will find life and hope beyond death.

    From Josef Ratzinger, Faith and the Future (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2009). The original edition of this book appeared in 1969.

    https://www.crossroadsinitiative.com/media/articles/future-christianity-cardinal-ratzinger/

    ON THE FUTURE OF CHRISTIANITY
    Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger – Pope Benedict XVI

    1October-2001 — ZENIT.org News Agency
    “Above All, We Should Be Missionaries”
    VATICAN CITY, (ZENIT.org-Avvenire).- Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger has a blunt message for Catholics today. “We cannot calmly accept the rest of humanity falling back again into paganism,” says the prefect of the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in “God and the World,” the new book-interview he granted German journalist Peter Seewald. St. Paul´s in Italy recently published the book. Following are some of the book´s questions and answers that were highlighted by the Italian newspaper Avvenire.

    • Q: Many years ago, you spoke in prophetic terms about the Church of the future. At the time you said, “it will be reduced in its dimensions, it will be necessary to start again. However, from this test a Church would emerge that will have been strengthened by the process of simplification it experienced, by its renewed capacity to look within itself.” What are the prospects that await us in Europe?

    • Cardinal Ratzinger: To begin with, the Church “will be numerically reduced.” When I made this affirmation, I was overwhelmed with reproaches of pessimism.

    And today, when all prohibitions seem obsolete, among them those that refer to what has been called pessimism and which, often, is nothing other than healthy realism, increasingly more [people] admit the decrease in the percentage of baptized Christians in today´s Europe: in a city like Magdeburg, Christians are only 8% of the total population, including all Christian denominations. Statistical data shows irrefutable tendencies. In this connection, in certain cultural areas, there is a reduction in the possibility of identification between people and Church. We must take note, with simplicity and realism. The mass Church may be something lovely, but it is not necessarily the Church´s only way of being. The Church of the first three centuries was small, without being, by this fact, a sectarian community. On the contrary, it was not closed in on itself, but felt a great responsibility in regard to the poor, the sick-in regard to all. There was room in its heart for all those nourished by a monotheist faith, in search of a promise. This awareness of not being a closed club, but of being open to the totality of the community, has always been a constant component of the Church. The process of numerical reduction, which we are experiencing today, will also have to be addressed precisely by exploring new ways of openness to the outside, of new ways of participation by those who are outside the community of believers. I have nothing against people who, though they never enter a church during the year, go to Christmas midnight Mass, or go on the occasion of some other celebration, because this is also a way of coming close to the light. Therefore, there must be different forms of involvement and participation.

    • Q: However, can the Church really renounce its aspiration to be a Church of the majority?
    • Cardinal Ratzinger: We must take note of the decrease in our lines but, likewise, we must continue to be an open Church. The Church cannot be a closed, self-sufficient group.

    Above all, we should be missionaries, in the sense of proposing again to society those values that are the foundation of the constitutive form that society has given itself, and which are at the base of the possibility to build a really human social community. The Church will continue to propose the great universal human values. Because, if law no longer has common moral foundations, it collapses insofar as it is law. From this point of view, the Church has a universal responsibility. As the Pope says, missionary responsibility means, precisely, to really attempt a new evangelization. We cannot calmly accept the rest of humanity falling back again into paganism. We must find the way to take the Gospel, also, to nonbelievers. The Church must tap all her creativity so that the living force of the Gospel will not be extinguished.

    • Q: What changes will the Church undergo?
    • Cardinal Ratzinger: I think we will have to be very cautious when it comes to the risk of forecasts, because historical development has always produced many surprises. Futurology often crashes.

    For example, no one risked forecasting the fall of the Communist regimes. World society will change profoundly, but we are still not in a position to predict what the numerical decrease of the Western world will imply, which is still dominant, what Europe´s new face will be like, given the migratory currents, what civilization, and what social forms will be imposed. What is clear, in any event, is the different composition of the potential on which the Western Church will be sustained. What is most important, in my opinion, is to look at the “essence,” to use an expression of Romano Guardini. It is necessary to avoid elaborating fantastic pre-constructions of something that could manifest itself very differently and that we cannot prefabricate in the meanderings of our brain, but to concentrate on the essential, which later might find new ways of incarnating itself. A process of simplification is important, which will enable us to distinguish between what is the master beam of our doctrine, of our faith, what is of perennial value in it. It is important to propose again the great underlying constants in their fundamental components, the questions on God, salvation, hope, life, especially what has a basic ethical value.
     
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  2. padraig

    padraig New Member

    So (the then Cardinal) Ratzinger draws the future (which is more and more our present ) in broad brush stokes. It will be very, very much smaller and of far less influence. A poorer Remnant Church. But Cardinal Ratzinger did not go into details for he says there is simply no telling how it will turn out when it comes our of the Future Oven.

    But we can see that because it is poorer, smaller and far less influential it will attract far fewer evil people. Why? Because the evil seek power, money and influence...what would be the point otherwise? So we shall see the rats ( particularly in the higher echelons such as the Vatican) desert the sinking ship in huge numbers. A purification will take place. Take for example a Parish Priest in a large , well off city Parish. At the moment he has a good income, he has a nice home, if he happens (as is very often the case) a homosexual, his Bishop will cover for him as will many of his congregation. He will have influence, he will automatically be respected, he will have a pretty good life style.

    Now take the same guy in the near future. He will probably not have a regular home and may be transient. Little of no money. No real power at all. If he is living a false, sinful lifestyle it will be at once obvious to his much smaller Faith Family. He will have no real power. He shall have to be a person of very,very deep prayer and Faith as he may live most of his life in prison and may even risk death on a regular basis.
     
  3. padraig

    padraig New Member

    For the Faithful. Well there will be no more Parish or Diocese (at least how we knew them) and no more Churches or Cathedrals or the big institutes, the schools, the Universities, the Hospitals and so on. The Vatican itself will probably be first target and will no longer exist except (perhaps) as a Museum.

    The Faithful , the very ,very few that remain will be totally committed prepared at a moments notice to die or go to prison for their beliefs. They will build their lives around their Faith rather than their Faith around their lives. The young will be taught by their parents. Communities of believers will live in small close groups to maintain Faith. They will teach their own children to shepherd them from the great evils around them. They will be constantly despised, hated and persecuted by wider Society
     
  4. Mario

    Mario Powers

    Padraig,

    I think your analysis is accurate, but I wish to add a slightly different aspect: the issue of physical proximity. As of right now this is not yet paramount. In the States, the home-schooling movement (A) and the TLM parishes (B) are bastions of orthodoxy and their adherents generally live in close proximity. There are other faithful Catholics who are dependent on the internet, like MOG, or those plugged into their favorite orthodox teachers (such as Ralph Martin). As the internet comes under more and more scrutiny by Big Tech, those who communicate via the Web will be more easily silenced. For instance, I doubt MOG will be in existence in 2023.

    Perhaps the scope of surveillance in China will be modeled in the USA, but the desire to give the illusion of freedom will probably slow that process in the West in regard to A and B. This is one reason I've encouraged us to search locally for orthodox support, or even to initiate a group ourselves. Physical proximity is paramount. One deterrent for us to do so is our age; few of us here are spring chickens. An example you-yourself pointed out was how your parish has responded to the lockdown utilizing lookouts. That can only work when physical proximity is a reality.

    But even if we elderly are short on energy and mobility, we need to be tied in locally. What purpose would we serve? We must be the recognized prayer warriors providing spiritual covering for the younger families and members who can better covertly gather together: the 21st century desert fathers and mothers to blind the enemy. Friends, these are realities we must face. Now I know this is more easily accomplished when a couple like Geralyn and myself are united. Some of you don't have that luxury, so look for a prayer partner that lives nearby.

    The Faithful of Padraig's post above must begin to connect and act soon. We must act soon and work locally. Having a living relationship with our guardian angels will also be crucial.

    Pray, protect, and pastor! St. Benedict, pray for us!
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2021
  5. PurpleFlower

    PurpleFlower Archangels

    As a mother of one of the young families of which you speak, I am grateful for the coverage of prayers you elderly faithful provide. It is so comforting.
     
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  6. padraig

    padraig New Member

    Yes, I think it is true if we don't form family or Clan Groups we simply won't survive.

    I mean Faith Families. We saw how quickly the Bishops and priests caved into Societal pressures and laws. It takes a real living Faith and Spirit of Sacrifice to stand up and say a simple, 'No'.

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  7. padraig

    padraig New Member

    Prayer reminds me of Jesus carry the Cross to Calvary. It was the women who were faithful. The Holy Woman of Jerusalem. Veronica. Mary of Magdalen. The Mother of Jesus. When I look round the Church at the moment it is the women who carry the Church on their backs.

     
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  8. Beth B

    Beth B Beth Marie

    Great video from Catholics who are standing up for the faith against the powers to be currently in the world.

    God bless and protect these good, godly men! Please support them in any way you can. If they are removed, then Gods permissive will allowed it, but not our obligation to support them in the here and now. We all play a role in this. We were not meant to stand on the sidelines as silent observers. This responsibility belongs to all of us as children of the Most High God. Defend the faith....the traditional faith handed down from our fathers. If they silence us, so be it. God will have the final say and we will be ask to account for our part when the battle lines were drawn....as they certainly appear to be now. If all you can do is pray, pray. If you can financially support ministries, please try, if you are called to join, join. If you can write, write and share. We need to protect and defend mother church against political civil powers and even some of her clerics who are among those trying to destroy our church. Gods law is above AlL else.

     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2021
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  9. BrianK

    BrianK Powers Staff Member

    I think all this will be true DURING the Minor Chastisement. We’re living through the beginning stages of it, but it will get much MUCH worse.

    Then with the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart an Era of Peace will begin. Due to the previous Minor Chastisement we will be living a much simpler agrarian life style. Technology as we now know it will simply no longer exist, due to human and Divine actions during the Minor Chastisement; I’m not even sure we’ll have basic electricity and running water.

    But the Church will flourish as never before, in order to accomplish the final evangelization.

    I don’t know how long that Era of Peace will last. Some prophecies say just one generation, others say several to many.

    But at the end of that Era of Peace will come the real end, possibly accompanied by a brutal return of technological oligarchy under the AC, and the Return of Christ and Last Judgement.
     
  10. padraig

    padraig New Member

    Someone was asking me last night when the Great Persecution of the Faithful will start. He seemed to think many a Generation or two.

    I would say it has already started (depending where you live on it#s severity). I mean that in somewhere like China or many Islamic countries it doesn't get much worse really.

    For an idea of timescale I would turn to Medugorje. The greatest series of Marian Apparitions in the history of the world. This marks the 40th year since 1981. $0 is of course a Holy Number and I would say this years marks the start of the secrets being revealed. So by this mark the fullness of Times are upon us.

    What will be the Great Sign left at Medugorje and other Marian Sites? I believe Scripture shows us this. When the Jews crosses the Desert for 40 years they were led by a Pillar of smoke by day and Light by Night. In the NEw Testament the Cross is itself the Great Sign. So I suspect the Great Sign will be the Cross as shown as Light/ smoke.

    So I believe events are right on top of us.

     
  11. Adoremus

    Adoremus Powers

    The first time my mother went to Medj she was no longer practicing her faith and wasn't really sure what she believed. Towards the end of the pilgrimage they were at the top of Mount Krizevac and she witnessed the sign that changed her whole life. Both she and her sister saw the cross at the top of the mountain completely lit up as though with electric light, though there is, or was (it was 1987), no electricity at the top of the mountain. She thought everyone could see it and that it was a miracle that would be on the news all over the world, but when they got back down to the village they asked the rest of their group and nobody else had seen it but them. Because of this, I think the cross illuminated will be part of the miracle there.
     
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  12. Mary's child

    Mary's child Powers

    Many years ago I had a dream that is still with me vividly. In the dream the world seemed destroyed physically, there was a group of us of around 30 who were walking up the side of a mountain trail. Upon reaching the top there was a large tree house in the tallest of trees. It was nighttime and a few of us decided to climb up and take a look over the canopy of leaves. The most beautiful sight of all covered the entire night sky, a brilliant gold chalice with the body of Christ above it.
     
  13. padraig

    padraig New Member

    The Cross on the Mountain was erected back in 1934 to commemorate 1900 years since the death of Jesus. I notice sometimes you see them in Ireland too, often in very unexpected spots. Of course you see them on mountain tops right across the world.

    The Cross is part of the Great Sign I think spoken of in Scripture,

    Revelation 12:1-12

    A great sign appeared in the sky, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. She was with child and wailed aloud in pain as she labored to give birth. Then another sign appeared in the sky; it was a huge red dragon, with seven heads and ten horns, and on its heads were seven diadems. Its tail swept away a third of the stars in the sky and hurled them down to the earth. Then the dragon stood before the woman about to give birth, to devour her child when she gave birth. She gave birth to a son, a male child, destined to rule all the nations with an iron rod. Her child was caught up to God and his throne. The woman herself fled into the desert where she had a place prepared by God, that there she might be taken care of for twelve hundred and sixty days. Then war broke out in heaven; Michael and his angels battled against the dragon. The dragon and its angels fought back, but they did not prevail and there was no longer any place for them in heaven. The huge dragon, the ancient serpent, who is called the Devil and Satan, who deceived the whole world, was thrown down to earth, and its angels were thrown down with it. Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say: “Now have salvation and power come, and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Anointed. For the accuser of our brothers is cast out, who accuses them before our God day and night. They conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; love for life did not deter them from death. Therefore, rejoice, you heavens, and you who dwell in them. But woe to you, earth and sea, for the Devil has come down to you in great fury, for he knows he has but a short time.”

    But the other part of the Sing is Our Lady herself standing beneath the Cross. As indeed she stands at the Altar at every Mass until the end of time.

    Why do some people see Signs and others don't? Perhaps it is partly a case of need. Some people really need to see things others don't. So it is a case of horses fro courses.

    But mostly I think the vast majority of people who see or hear things dimply don't report them. Why not? Well fear of being laughed at really. Fear of being made fun off. People, especially young people are terrified of being laughed at.
     
  14. padraig

    padraig New Member

    Although Jesus in the parable of Lazarus reports that even should the dead return from hell to warn us still we would ignore it and carry on as normal. So I don;t suppose even the Great Sign will be a quick fix, People believe that which it suits them to believe. Abortion is such a good example of this. It suits people to believe murdering the unborn is fine, so they do believe it. It they needed to believe that they had a third leg in order to sin, they would all be totally confident that they had a third leg.
     
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  15. padraig

    padraig New Member

    I went up to Church yesterday to try and get the Eucharist. After waiting an hour doing Adoration I gave up and decided to take the dogs a walk round the block and try again. When I got back of course they had just given out the Eucharist and so I missed it.

    But I did not mind too much. I tried.

    The people in Church continue to inspire and give great hope. I think I am good when I pray for an hour in Front of the Blessed Sacrament. But most of them are doing far,far more than an hour. I know this because they are there when I enter and there when I leave. A few of them appear to have grown roots and never seem to leave the Church.

    Mind blowing.

    A big, big crowd for Sunday Confession and confessions during the week. Virtually no talking in Church ever. Marvellous.

    People all dressing up for Sunday Mass (I have not seen this so much since childhood). Great.

    The priest and seminarian are always present, so we can get Holy Water, Blessed Salts and Medals blessed at once. They pray with us, we see them praying. They are only a call away. What a God send!

    Bigger and bigger crowds coming. It is growing hugely. Success breeds success. It is as though our Church had become a Pilgrimage site, with people coming from far out in the country to attend.

    [​IMG]
     
  16. padraig

    padraig New Member

     
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  17. Jo M

    Jo M Powers

    What a great blessing Padraig.
     
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  18. Joan J

    Joan J HolySpiritCome!

    And this is Ireland?! Does it seem like a hug resurgance?
     
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  19. PurpleFlower

    PurpleFlower Archangels

    How wonderful!
     
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  20. padraig

    padraig New Member

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