People, This is Paradise

CP&S Comment: After so much doom and gloom in the MSM and blogosphere in recent weeks, the St Louis Catholic blog looks at the current situation from a more positive angle.


And the Lord God sent him out of the paradise of pleasure, to till the earth from which he was taken. And he cast out Adam; and placed before the paradise of pleasure Cherubims, and a flaming sword, turning every way, to keep the way of the tree of life. –Genesis 3: 23-24

In the midst of a spiritual direction conference last week, almost as an aside, my director said something that rang true then and has only grown in my mind:

The current situation in the Church is like paradise.


If you haven’t been awake the last fifty twenty four years, I can’t do much more than I have done to sound the alarm and point out all of the disasters we face today. But remember this: as much as the Church is in turmoil and confusion– from top to bottom all the way back up– a time is coming when we will look back on 2016 and wish we had appreciated it.

We have the Mass. You, Joe Catholic, can go to Mass every single day. Even the timeless Mass is available to more people now than at any time since 1970. I, personally, can assist at the traditional Mass every single day. Do I? The Holy Sacrifice is effected every single day, all over the world. There are priests to celebrate it. Do I avail myself of this means of salvation?

“A day will come when the civilized world will deny its God, when the Church will doubt as Peter doubted. She will be tempted to believe that man has become God. In our churches, Christians will search in vain for the red lamp where God awaits them. Like Mary Magdalene, weeping before the empty tomb, they will ask, ‘Where have they taken Him?’” — Eugenio Cardinal Pacelli, the future Pius XII, 1931.

We have confession and the availability of sacramental absolution. How precious is that? You, Joe Catholic, can go to confession at least every week, no matter where you live. There are still priests who can and will absolve you. You just have to ask. Do you? I can avail myself of a regularly scheduled confession time every single day in my Oratory. Every day. Any day. Do I make use of it?

We can speak to, encourage, and commiserate with other Catholics every single day. We can speak with our brethren throughout the world at any time. How great is that? Do we encourage each other? Do I encourage anyone? Not nearly enough, I know.

Yes, the obscuring of the faith and the confusing of the faithful at the highest levels of the hierarchy is flat-out wrong, troubling, and a portent of worse to come. But we have access to Denzinger, the Roman Catechism, books by saints, fathers and theologians at our very fingertips. I have an app on my phone that gives me a totally solid spiritual library– greater than that which monasteries used to guard as precious treasures of civilizaton— that I can access at will. This app contains the Bible, the Breviary, a comprehensive collection of traditional prayers, Aquinas, De Sales, a Kempis, and so much more. Do I read these things to my sanctification? Did I mention that I have the entire liturgy of the Church in an iphone app? It is incredible. These works are not just there, but they are searchable and extremely easy to use.

Do I use these resources for good?

We are free to do all these things. This is not 17th Century England, where we would be arrested and tortured for assisting at Mass, or for refusing heretical worship. This may be the case in the future– maybe the very, very near future– but not now. Do we understand how good we have it? All the weak and faithless members of God’s Holy Church do not prevent us from being Catholic.

People, this is Shangri-La.

Yes, we will likely look back on this time, with the clouds gathering, as a period of glory. We have the total freedom to practice our faith and to fortify us for hard times. Let’s do just that. Man up. Stay close to the Sacraments. Stay close to Mary and the saints. Stay confessed. And let us be grateful.

Heads up– we are made for Christ, and He will sustain us.

Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall put you to death: and you shall be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. And then shall many be scandalized: and shall betray one another: and shall hate one another. And many false prophets shall rise, and shall seduce many. And because iniquity hath abounded, the charity of many shall grow cold. But he that shall persevere to the end, he shall be saved. – Matthew 24: 9-13



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5 Responses to People, This is Paradise

  1. Roger says:

    What we have today isn’t Paradise its actually a capitulation to the World, the Flesh and the Devil.
    Here then is the test for the True State of the Faith and this world

    Saint Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort (31 January 1673 – 28 April 1716)

    1. It was through the Blessed Virgin Mary that Jesus came into the world, and it is also through her that he must reign in the world.

    45. To Mary alone God gave the keys of the cellars of divine love and the ability to enter the most sublime and secret ways of perfection, and lead others along them. Mary alone gives to the unfortunate children of unfaithful Eve entry into that earthly paradise where they may walk pleasantly with God and be safely hidden from their enemies. There they can feed without fear of death on the delicious fruit of the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. They can drink copiously the heavenly waters of that beauteous fountain which gushes forth in such abundance. As she is herself the earthly paradise, that virgin and blessed land from which sinful Adam and Eve were expelled she lets only those whom she chooses enter her domain in order to make them saints.

    256. Mary’s faithful servants despise this corrupted world. They should hate and shun its allurements, and follow the exercises of the contempt of the world which we have given in the first part of this treatise.

    253. When the Hail Mary is well said, that is, with attention, devotion and humility, it is, according to the saints, the enemy of Satan, putting him to flight; it is the hammer that crushes him, a source of holiness for souls, a joy to the angels and a sweet melody for the devout. It is the Canticle of the New Testament, a delight for Mary and glory for the most Blessed Trinity. The Hail Mary is dew falling from heaven to make the soul fruitful. It is a pure kiss of love we give to Mary. It is a crimson rose, a precious pearl that we offer to her. It is a cup of ambrosia, a divine nectar that we offer her. These are comparisons made by the saints.


    250. Here is what our Blessed Lady revealed to Blessed Alan de Rupe as recorded in his book, The Dignity of the Rosary, and as told again by Cartagena: “Know, my son, and make it known to all, that lukewarmness or negligence in saying the Hail Mary, or a distaste for it, is a probable and proximate sign of eternal damnation, for by this prayer the whole world was restored.”


    (1) One is recorded in the chronicles of St. Francis. The saint saw in ecstasy an immense ladder reaching to heaven, at the top of which stood the Blessed Virgin. This is the ladder, he was told, by which we must all go to heaven.
    (2) There is another related in the Chronicles of St. Dominic. Near Carcassonne, where St. Dominic was preaching the Rosary, there was an unfortunate heretic who was possessed by a multitude of devils. These evil spirits to their confusion were compelled at the command of our Lady to confess many great and consoling truths concerning devotion to her. They did this so clearly and forcibly that, however weak our devotion to our Lady may be, we cannot read this authentic story containing such an unwilling tribute paid by the devils to devotion to our Lady without shedding tears of joy.

    The Dogma Of The Immaculate Conception (1854) dominates the 19th century. It Crowns the Shrine Of Lourdes.
    Heavens condition for Peace is the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
    A false Ecumenism that sidelines Mary cannot bring Peace but rather War such is the Will of God.

    Lourdes forshadowed Fatima
    Fatima Peace is to be found in the Triumph of Mary (Her Immaculate Heart). This is God’s Holy Will.

    Understand that the Old Law (Covenant) has ended and been replaced with the New Testament. It was Mary alone and through Mary that the Man-God came. The denial of Our Lord starts with the denial of the Immaculate.
    It is very sad that after 2000 years neither Mary nor her Son are accepted by her own people.

    16. God the Father gave his only Son to the world only through Mary. Whatever desires the patriarchs may have cherished, whatever entreaties the prophets and saints of the Old Law may have had for 4,000 years to obtain that treasure, it was Mary alone who merited it and found grace before God by the power of her prayers and the perfection of her virtues. “The world being unworthy,” said Saint Augustine, “to receive the Son of God directly from the hands of the Father, he gave his Son to Mary for the world to receive him from her.”
    The Son of God became man for our salvation but only in Mary and through Mary.
    God the Holy Spirit formed Jesus Christ in Mary but

  2. Toad says:

    What are you getting at, Roger?

  3. kathleen says:

    Dear Roger,

    I think the author of this article is speaking slightly tongue-in-cheek! There is little doubt that Catholics are finding it pretty hard to practice their Faith in most parts of the world today.
    He is saying that despite the turmoil in the Western Catholic Church since V2, we can still find the sacraments within easy reach, and will not (normally) be blown to bits or clamped into jail for doing so….. At least, not yet!
    That’s actually what he is inferring to; a time appears to be coming when great suffering will come upon our descendants at the rate hostility and harassment is increasing in the West. Cling to the Catholic Faith with courage and determination. Looks like we’ll be down in the catacombs again one day in the near future! So (IOW) let’s be grateful that we, in comparison, are living the last of a sort of “paradise” for Christians.

    However, we must never lose our joie de vivre that is the mark of a true Catholic. As Hillaire Belloc reminds us:

    “Wherever the Catholic sun doth shine,
    There’s always laughter and good red wine.
    At least I’ve always found it so.
    Benedicamus Domino!”

  4. Toad says:

    “Wherever the Catholic sun doth shine,
    There’s always laughter and good red wine…”

    ..Except if you are a teetotaler.
    It won’t be persecution that will bring down Christianity, but indifference.
    Be nice if it brought down Islam, as well. But they seem rather more intent.

    (Is it possible for a Catholic priest to be a teetotaler?
    …Or do “teetotal ” ones only drink blood? Interesting thought.)

  5. Roger says:

    Yes Kathleen, Hillaire Belloc loved Sussex and the Downs,

    Belloc sets the example of those Lukewarm who publically play down the Faith.
    Which has become a scandal since 1960!

    – Hilaire Belloc, 1906 speech in Salford
    “Gentlemen, I am a Catholic. As far as possible, I go to Mass every day. This [taking a rosary from his pocket] is a rosary. As far as possible, I kneel down and tell these beads every day. If you reject me on account of my religion, I shall thank God that He has spared me the indignity of being your representative.”

    “There was a hush of astonishment, followed by a thunderclap of applause.”

    For those that Give Public Witness to The Faith we find “..joie de vivre” which is the mark of a true Catholic.
    For the Lukewarm look at those who followed Henry VIII. Yes Men more frightened of upsetting Man than God!

    The Catacombs? The keeping of the Faith? Do what Belloc did!

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