Stolen Property

By Michael Voris on The Vortex.

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Click here to see a video recording of this post.

I’m Michael Voris coming to you from London, England.

This country is planted thick with churches and convents and monasteries and practically all of them are stolen property. Buildings that originally were built by Catholic religious orders and everyday Catholics over the course of centuries were ripped off from the Catholic Church in a handful of years because Henry VIII couldn’t control his sexual desires.

So part of the fabric of English Catholicism is this undercurrent of having been victimized by the Protestant, usurping monarchy and greedy noblemen. It’s woven into the very life and language of some faithful English Catholics — even so far as questioning the legitimacy of the royal family because the monarchy was also a victim of theft during the religious battles of England.

But how did all this come to pass almost 500 years ago? How did a country, a nation so faithful to the Church that it was called “Mary’s Dowry,” simply flip so easily to the state-run Protestant entity known as Anglicanism, or the Church of England?

This much is certain: because of the cowardice and political machinations of the Catholic bishops of the time. Those bishops simply miscalculated. They thought that Henry’s threat to the Church would pass soon enough and things would go back to life as usual. What they failed to include in their calculus was all the other characters waiting in the wings to devour the Church — people like Lutheran-in-spirit Thomas Cranmer and the large number of English who had much to profit from a financially weakened Church and so forth. There were many Englishmen just waiting for the moment when they could tear the Church apart and seize Her lands, holdings, properties, buildings, etc. Those bishops, just like many today, failed to see the larger, much broader agenda at work just beneath the surface.

The Church has all kinds of enemies, all types that have an interest in seeing Her be destroyed. Some hate the teachings. Others have a guilty conscience and take it out on the Chuch. Others still are indifferent and simply see the Church as standing in the way of cultural “progress.” Others see the Church as an artifact of the Middle Ages whose time has passed, and who should be relegated to history. Many have a specific agenda, such as sodomite marriage, and want the Church out of the debate.

Despite the intentions, they are all motivated by evil, and when people are motivated by evil (and it doesn’t matter if it’s conscious or not), they are capable of anything when put in the right circumstances.

Consider what happened here in this very country: the gruesome martyrdom of Catholics, the outlawing of the Faith, the overrunning of hundreds of monasteries and schools and parishes.

This was a Catholic country through and through, and it was a lustful desire of the Catholic king that brought it all tumbling down.

The son of King Henry VIII, Edward VI, is the one who essentially bulldozed the Church over the cliff here, while after a brief Catholic respite under half-sister Mary, Elizabeth I came to the throne and finished the job. But that coy old witch was very clever indeed.

In order to bring an end to the sectarian revolts, she advanced a hybrid religion, one that looked Catholic on the outside, to win the favor of all the stupid, largely Catholic populace, too uneducated to really notice that underneath the Catholic veneer was a decidedly anti-Catholic religion.

Things appeared rather normal to most people, who went about their business as usual as England was slowly transformed into the non-Catholic nation that it is today, stripped of nearly all its former Catholic glory.

When smart Catholics caught on and began a quiet seditionist movement to keep the Faith alive by sneakily importing English priests from a secret seminary established in France, Elizabeth showed her true colors by capturing and killing many of them. More than 200 years before France’s Reign of Terror against the Faith, Satan had a warm-up act in the Elizabethan terror campaign on these shores.

It would not be long after “Good Queen Bess,” as protestant history references her, that Englishmen in search of public office would have to renounce belief in the transubstantiation of the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Our Blessed Lord.

That this happened under the reign of King Charles II of the Stuarts is one of those historical ironies. As King of England he was also head of the Anglican church (small c), which historians note he roundly despised. But he played the game, even looking the other way when notable English martyr and archbishop of Armaugh Oliver Plunkett was hanged, drawn and quartered at the infamous Tyburn, which Elizabeth had put to good use.

As Charles lay dying, a priest, John Huddlestone, who had saved his life in battle during his youth, was now smuggled in to save his soul. Protestant King Charles II converted to the Catholic faith his last full day on earth, and following absolution and anointing, the Blessed Sacrament was held over him and he made a profession of faith, breaking English law.

Today, Protestant anti-Catholicism has been overthrown by secular anti-Catholicism. A widely acclaimed novel — “Wolf Hall” by author Hillary Mantel — has been turned into a spectacular TV production by the BBC and has now begun airing on PBS back in the States as of Easter Sunday. The novel seeks to deliberately turn history on its ear and depict St. Thomas More as a villainous, rotten man and Thomas Cromwell as an effective administrator having to contest the evil More at every turn. It is very important to note that author Hillary Mantel has said publicly that the Catholic Church is not a place for respectable people.

There is a lesson for Catholics in the West everywhere outside of England to learn from English Catholics: the tide is turning swiftly and strongly against Catholics. Just as happened here almost 500 years ago, the power of the state was used to extinguish Catholic life, and it all began because of King Henry’s lust.

America doesn’t have a king — at least officially, Mr. Obama — but the culture sets patterns and views like a king. Whether those powers are assumed into a single lust-crazed, murderous monarch, or spread out over a society that kills for love of sex, matters little in the end. The powers that be — whether king or culture — cannot let Catholic truth remain, because Catholic truth is an affront to them.

Catholics in America, unlike here in England, can’t easily relate to the reality of having your churches stolen from you and your property ripped from you. But the lesson to be learned from Merry Olde England is this: When the scales tip far enough (and they are tipping most decidedly), anything can happen.

Catholics in the West need to be preparing spiritually for persecution. The forces gathering against the Church from every side may be multi-dimensional, but they are totally united in their goal because of who it is that commands them.

http://www.churchmilitant.com/mp3/vort-2015-05-06-mp3.mp3 (And this is the audio recording of the post.)

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21 Responses to Stolen Property

  1. reinkat says:

    Very thought-provoking post. Who says history doesn’t repeat itself?

  2. ginnyfree says:

    I like Mr. Voris and support his ministry. He says quite a bit I’d like to. I’m glad he’s here and just as firery as he is. Zeal for your house shall consume me……..anyone notice anyone in their own parishes or elsewhere in their daily lives who could measure up to that state of passion? I don’t think so unfortunately. I love it when he talks about the “church of nice.” God bless. Ginnyfree.

  3. toadspittle says:

    “How did a country, a nation so faithful to the Church that it was called “Mary’s Dowry,” simply flip so easily to the state-run Protestant entity known as Anglicanism, or the Church of England…?”

    Good question, Mr. V.
    …Perhaps someone should have asked C.S. Lewis.

  4. TerryC says:

    I’m afraid Hillary Mantel is right, Mr. Voris, the Catholic Church is not a place for respectable people. It’s the place for sinners and saints. The Church of England can keep the respectable people, I’ll take the Church in which God’s herald kisses lepers and in which his daughter invites old people off the streets into her home so that she take care of them and can hold their hand while they wait to pass to eternal life. Respectability is overrated.

  5. kathleen says:

    Interesting analysis TerryC. I’ve not seen the series ‘Wolf Hall’, so my only knowledge of it is from hearsay. However, Mantel’s depiction of “St. Thomas More as a villainous, rotten man and Thomas Cromwell as an effective administrator having to contest the evil More at every turn sounds more than a little distorted, wouldn’t you say?

    Depending on what you mean by respectability, e.g. this should not be a synonym for ‘haughtiness’ or feelings of ‘superiority’, I think having a good many ‘respectable’ people in high places, especially in the Church hierarchy, and among our politicians, would be a very good thing. It could go a long way to making the world more moral (in every way), and definitely more Christian!😉

  6. toadspittle says:

    Having read the first two books – in my opinion, neither More or Cromwell is treated as either hero or villain. ….but just as fallible human beings. Which is, of course, much worse.
    For what Toad’s opinion is worth (!) – St. Thomas More comes off as the better human being than does Cromwell.
    But, like everything, it’s all relative – and open to endless individual interpretation.

  7. mkenny114 says:

    I haven’t read the books, but saw the TV adaptation on the BBC recently. It was, in terms of production, acting, dialogue, excellent. But what is worrying is that precisely because it was such a well-made series, its underlying message will be that much more compelling. In the TV series, Cromwell is routinely portrayed as a well-meaning pragmatist, and any ambitions he might harbour are explained away by regular flashbacks to a childhood (wholly fictional) where he was not only treated badly by his father, but had his offer of friendship rebuked by a young Thomas More as the young Cromwell worked as a servant in More’s household.

    Saint Thomas on the other hand, is shown from the start to be scrupulous and slightly fanatical, sometimes rude and often overly proud of his asceticism. He becomes more likeable as the series goes on, and his fealty to conscience is given a good airing, but even here (via the mouth of Cromwell) it is suggested that his refusal to take an oath supporting Henry’s annulment or to sign in support of the Act of Supremacy is based more on stubbornness and pride than genuine sanctity. Finally, in what starts out as a moving scene, where we see Saint Thomas go to be executed, he looks out into the crowd and locks eyes with Cromwell, the architect of his downfall, and this segues into a scene back in their childhood where More sees Cromwell calling to him in a courtyard, and shuts the window on him – the suggestion again being that Cromwell only turned out the way he did because he was shunned by ‘people like’ Thomas More (i.e.; in this context, self-serving posh sorts who use religion as a mask of respectability or to bolster their own egos).

    Also, though they have small roles, both Stephen Gardiner and Saint John Fisher are pretty much portrayed as pantomime villains, motivated solely by politics and/or personal animus, rather than the reality, where both men acted out of sincere principle. Essentially the whole series (again, I don’t know how true this is of the book) is a very well-made and very compelling subversion of the truth. Thankfully there is an increasing amount of scholarship available now that undermines the long-held idea (promoted relentlessly by the English government of course, and absorbed into the national consciousness) that the Reformation in England was a popular, ground-up affair, and/or that corruption was endemic in the monasteries of the time. However, series like this will, I fear, have slowed down the reception of such scholarship into the mainstream by quite a bit.

  8. mkenny114 says:

    But, like everything, it’s all relative – and open to endless individual interpretation.

    I could have sworn I’ve heard this argument somewhere before…

  9. toadspittle says:

    Seems like you are making the same argument yourself – in relation to the telly programme, Michael.
    Another viewer might see it in an entirely different light. Possibly

    “The series …is a very well-made and very is a very well-made and very compelling subversion of the truth. “
    Paranoia. It’s an adaption of a novel. This is how the novelist chooses to see things. They can decide. Like “Oliver Twist” or “Madame Bovary.” Are they “…compelling subversions of the truth.” ? Personally I enjoyed reading the first two books, am glad Ms Mantel wrote them, and look forward to the third – where naughty old Cromwell gets his come-uppance.

  10. mkenny114 says:

    Seems like you are making the same argument yourself – in relation to the telly programme, Michael.

    How am I, by giving my impression of the series (and one shared by many commentators I might add, including Simon Schama and David Starkey – not known for their support of the Catholic Church) making the argument that all opinions and/or interpretations are all relative? Sorry, but that is utterly ridiculous.

    Paranoia. It’s an adaption of a novel. This is how the novelist chooses to see things. They can decide. Like “Oliver Twist” or “Madame Bovary.” Are they “…compelling subversions of the truth.” ?

    The difference is that the two counter examples you cite are completely fictional, whereas Mantell’s novels are based on historical fact. My point is that the television series deliberately attempts to subvert what is known about this period in history (and, despite the fact that I haven’t read the novels, as Mantell approved of the adaptation, I can only assume this is what she set out to do as well) and I don’t see anything paranoid about that. Exhibit A (i.e.; what happened in real life) paints one picture; Exhibit B (the adaptation of Mantell’s books version) puts a completely different spin on it – how is it ‘paranoid’ to point this out?

  11. toadspittle says:

    Michael, I happily withdraw the “paranoid” in this case, but there’s a heck of a lot of it around these days. My guess, is that Mantel thought deeply about the character of Cromwell and interpreted her conclusions as best she could. Nothing more. No intention of lying and/or glamourising him. What would be the point? I don’t know her motives, of course – because I’m not her.
    Rather the reverse of Shakespeare and Richard lll, though, I suggest. Will had excellent, though venal, reasons for blackguarding the poor chap. If the suggestion is that she wrote the books to bash More and the Church, well I highly doubt it.
    But again, I don’t know. Maybe she did.

  12. mkenny114 says:

    My guess, is that Mantel thought deeply about the character of Cromwell and interpreted her conclusions as best she could. Nothing more. No intention of lying and/or glamourising him. What would be the point? I don’t know her motives, of course – because I’m not her.

    I’m not her either, but she has made her feelings about the Catholic Church clear (very anti) and noted that part of the reason for writing the books was her desire to overturn the popular image of St. Thomas More (particularly that as given in ‘A Man For All Seasons’ – a film which, whilst also indulging in some artistic licence, stays pretty close to the facts, and even uses quotations from court transcripts for the dialogue in those scenes in the film). Included within her motivations for writing these books certainly was a desire to alter the historical picture of both Cromwell and More, something which comes through in the television series.

    Here are a few good articles on the topic, if you’re interested:

    http://www.firstthings.com/web-exclusives/2015/04/wolf-hall-and-upmarket-anti-catholicism

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/ec5583e2-b115-11e4-9331-00144feab7de.html

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/acts-of-faith/wp/2015/04/05/how-wolf-hall-will-entertain-millions-and-threaten-to-distort-history-in-the-process/

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/bbc/11369868/Wolf-Hall-is-deliberate-perversion-of-history-says-David-Starkey.html

  13. mkenny114 says:

    P.S. I’m still not sure how my providing one assessment of the television series’ overall angle (which, if we conflate the book and the series and add it to your own assessment, makes two opinions overall*) amounts to an endorsement of relativism – how is this so?

    *If we include the opinion that the book is actually perfectly true to historical fact, we have three possible interpretations overall, which hardly amounts to ‘endless individual interpretation’.

  14. toadspittle says:

    Oh, all right, Michael – ‘Not utterly endless individual interpretation.’… There.

    No book, no verbal statement, no photograph, no TV series, no work of man, in fact – no nothing – can ever be “perfectly” true to historical fact, or any other sort of “fact.” Too many imponderables. All we can do is make the best stab at veracity we can.
    You know that.

  15. toadspittle says:

    Just read Michael’s comment at 2.43. Maybe Mantel actually does have an anti-Catholic agenda. You make a very good case for that being the case.
    Disgraceful, if so.
    Imagine writing a novel that made out Muslims, or Catholics, Capitalists, The Ancient Romans, Aztecs, or The Russian Revolution, let alone The Spanish Inquisition – to be wicked. Dickens did something similar in Barnaby Rudge – which is not of much interest to most people (except Toad, who proudly shares a birthday with both him and More.)
    It makes one consider how, say, a French author might “novelise” Napoleon, and how an English one might do likewise, with very different results.
    Both lying through their respective teeth, no doubt.

    “When Novelists (or Opera Composers) Lie. ”
    Very interesting topic. For the shiny new “Off Topic” slot, maybe?

  16. mkenny114 says:

    Oh, all right, Michael – ‘Not utterly endless individual interpretation.’… There.

    Haha – glad to reach some kind of resolution on that one! Though I’d wager you are yet to be convinced that a variety of opinions on a given topic (no matter how many in number) does not in and of itself entail that none of those opinions captures or describes the truth therein. A topic for the new slot, along with ‘When Novelists (or Opera Composers) Lie’ though I think.

    Briefly on that note though, I certainly agree that no work can be perfectly true to historical fact – the word ‘perfectly’ was a bad choice on my part. But some attempt to do more justice to history than others, as some are bound to see things slightly differently to others based on their cultural background, etc, and yes, some* might well actually be liars as well – who knows.

    *Dan Brown for instance, is either an incredibly sloppy researcher, inconceivably gullible, or a massive liar (IMO).

  17. JabbaPapa says:

    No book, no verbal statement, no photograph, no TV series, no work of man, in fact – no nothing – can ever be “perfectly” true to historical fact

    Nothing but what we experience is even close to being true to historical fact, because History is but a necessarily flawed interpretation of incomplete evidence.

    This limitation does not apply to the Truth Himself.

  18. toadspittle says:

    This limitation does not apply to the Truth Himself.”.
    Possibly not, but we can never know what limitations apply on Planet Earth. (In my opinion.) Haven’t got the right mental equipment. Limited.

  19. toadspittle says:

    “Dan Brown for instance, is either an incredibly sloppy researcher, inconceivably gullible, or a massive liar (IMO).”

    I highly doubt if Dan Brown is “inconceivably gullible,” Michael.
    What he indisputably is – is inconceivably rich – entirely due to, (as you and I discussed before,) the fathomless stupidity of most people.
    You disagreed a few days ago, on this point, I think.
    As to whether he’s an incredibly sloppy researcher or not – do you think he or his publisher loses any sleep over this supposed shortcoming? Let alone that he might be a massive liar?
    …I suspect not.

  20. mkenny114 says:

    Toad,

    I do not know whether Dan Brown relies on shoddy research, is gullible enough to believe the things he writes about Church history to actually be true (there is a preface to ‘The Da Vinci Code’ claiming that what follows is based on real history, so we can discount that he is just providing a ‘reimagining’ of the period he is writing about), or is a massive liar. Nor do I doubt that he is very rich, or think that he loses much sleep over any of his shortcomings (if he’s aware of them that is).

    However, after clearing all that up, I’m not actually sure what your point was! My comment about Dan Brown was just meant as a footnote to your suggestion that some authors might be liars – I’m not sure what his bank balance has to do with anything.

    As for Brown’s readers being gullible enough to believe what he writes, yes this is true, but I wouldn’t put it down to their ‘fathomless stupidity’. Instead I think we just live in an age of great mis/disinformation, where, due to the wealth of resources available at our fingertips, we are given the illusion of being more knowledgeable than ever, but actually, thanks to the decline in people actually talking to each other, a wholesale rejection of authority (parental and educational), and the decreased attention spans fostered by television and other media, we are actually more ignorant and less receptive to ideas challenging our individualist worldview than ever before.

    We are an age that likes to think it thinks for itself, and our love of this blatant untruth is a sure protection against our ever actually doing such a thing. Not, I would argue, quite the same thing as stupidity though.

  21. toadspittle says:

    That is because you are much kinder, and more Christian, than Toad, Michael. (But then, you are hardly likely to be less.)
    Which is how it should be, in this, The Best Of All Possible Worlds.
    Re: research: I gather Brown stole the whole “Da Vinci,” idea from another book, “The Holy Blood and The Holy Grail, ” or some such title. As if anyone gives a cuss.

    “We are an age that likes to think it thinks for itself, and our love of this blatant untruth is a sure protection against our ever actually doing such a thing. Not, I would argue, quite the same thing as stupidity though.”
    Hair-spitting here, I reckon. But I don’t know. …And may be wrong.

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