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January 04, 2007



"What are your hopes for what B16 will do in 2007?"

Jimmy, I hope you're prepared to clean up after the Hobby Horses you just invited in.

Tim J.

Well, speaking only of what I would like to see happen in the U.S.;

I would be gratified to see assertive public discipline of wayward Catholic bishops, priests, theologians and ESPECIALLY seminaries.

I would also like to see the designation "Catholic" unceremoniously yanked from a few major universities.


I would like the restoration of the traditional latin Mass, and the abolition of the novus ordo.

But I'll take either.


The most significant, at least to me, are the motu proprio freeing the Classical Latin Mass and the post-synodal exhortation on the Eucharist. By reading all that Ratzinger wrote before becoming pope on the liturgy I expect a great movement towards recapturing our lost liturgical traditions. I look forward to the year ahead.

Anita Moore

I'd like to see the Holy Father put on a trench coat and a great big moustache and take a tour of my diocese, incognito, and then pay a surprise visit to the chancery office. I'd like to see certain bishops in the United States permanently assigned to the retinue of the Holy Father, where they might pick up some orthodox Catholicism. And I'd like to see that universal indult, so that I will no longer have to travel 300 miles to attend a Tridentine Mass.


I am excited about this new book coming out. I hope it will do a lot to reinvent Catholic theology which is in bad shape. I also look for JPII Catholic to continue to work their way into positions of leadership in the church. I think that is coming from the grass roots as these guys get into their 40's and 50's they start to be made bishops. I think it is also being helped by Rome. Not so much directly by B16 but by some of the people he has put in place.

Dan Hunter

Let us pray that the Holy Father will discipline disobediant cardinals and bishops and excommunicate them if needed,so that the faithful will not be confused as to Catholic teaching.
God bless us,everyone.


There are several reasons for the change. One is the simple fact that the number of the world's bishops has approximately doubled over the last 50 years. Another is that when Pope John Paul II was ill during the last years of his pontificate, he was unable to keep up the pace of "ad limina" meetings, and a backlog developed.

Today, even with a healthy pope, it's doubtful the Vatican can get back to the five-year schedule, one Vatican source said. The pope would have to meet with 540 bishops a year; last year, he met with 360.

So much for the Rad Trads' shouts of an ever diminishing Catholic Church!


I hope the Holy Father will crack down on the use of gender inclusive language; discipline wayward Bishops, etc; and make some sort of statement indicating the Novos Ordo isn't going to be abolished and reprimanding those who think they know better than the Church.


By reading all that Ratzinger wrote before becoming pope on the liturgy I expect a great movement towards recapturing our lost liturgical traditions.

At least someone's read Ratzinger's works.

John, have you read Arieh's comment here???

Please, please read up about what Ratzinger is all about before you cast your haughty eyes on him with such disdain and contempt!

And for all those who have such an aversion to Latin and would otherwise dispose of it like yesterday's garbage (although it is has become part of the Church's heritage in its long history), please be mindful of what Ratzinger, himself, had said in an interview:

Cardinal Ratzinger:

...Generally, I think it was good to translate the liturgy in the spoken languages because we will understand it; we will participate also with our thinking. But a stronger presence of some elements of Latin would be helpful to give the universal dimension, to give the possibilities that in all the parts of the world we can see “I am in the same Church.”

So generally, popular language is a solution. But some presence of Latin could be helpful to have more experience of universality.

A. Williams

As my wife belongs to the Neo Catechumenical Way, I would like the Vatican to make sure that all of the dozens of liturgical abuses are done away with in this group, that they follow the Roman Missal 'to the letter'and that the only doctrines they teach their 1 million + members will be 'patently' Roman Catholic...and tuned to the theological thinking of B16 and Cardinal Arinze.

I'm counting the days now for their 2 year liturgical transition period to be up. However, I'm also praying that the leaders, Kiko,Carmen, etc..don't cause a huge scandal by trying to somehow get around Cardinal Arinze's letter given them last year! There are too many good, but ignorant, members in the group, and I wouldn't want to see any unnecessary suffering on their part!

And if they are all truly converted to orthodox Catholicism, this group will have great evangelical benefits for the Church of Christ. But I must stress TRUE conversion to the TRUE doctrines and practices of the Catholic Church...and not newly(ie.Kiko and Carmen)invented ones.


I would be gratified to see assertive public discipline of ...ESPECIALLY seminaries.

Tim J.:

Very significant point you've brought up here -- especially since this is where the future of the Church, the future of the clergy lies.

Unfortunately, many of the folks that sit on the board for some seminaries are historical Jesus fans like someone we know and advance their hidden agenda by focussing on a curriculum that advocates such a formation for future priests.

I remember one person in particular who in his 'career' prior to becoming a board member was a teacher in the seminary. In fact, he had actually jumped from being simply a teacher to Dean to Rector in such a short span of time.

While a teacher though, he had taught that such miracles like the multiplication of the loaves didn't actually happen and that the actual 'miracle' that Jesus accomplished was getting folks to share what they had then with one another.

In addition, he had taught his students that the scene in the movie The Last Temptation of Christ could have actually happened given the fact that Jesus was, in fact, human after all.

Hopefully, as faithful Catholics, we can pray that the Pope will make the necessary changes (and, moreover, be successful in this endeavor) to our seminaries that they might produce orthodox Catholic priests by ensuring ways of guarding the Catholic Faith in the very place where it should be fostered in its most genuine form.

Although, it has been said (and it would make sense strategically-speaking) that the enemy of God would be more viscious in attacking the very places where God's chosen ones are to be found (as Christ said in Scripture in John 15:16 "You have not chosen me: but I have chosen you") than anywhere else. After all, this is where the future of the Church lies, as mentioned.

God protect and guide the Pope!

A. Williams

Excuse me. "Neocatechumenical Way", should be written "Neocatechumenal Way". Maybe,sub-consciously, I'm trying to express the term...Neocatechumaniacle Way?



"All the same I must admit that in the wake of the Council a lot of things happened far too quickly and abruptly, with the result that many of the faithful could not see the inner continuity with what had gone before. In part it is simply a fact that the Council was pushed aside. For instance, it had said that the language of the Latin Rite was to remain Latin, although suitable scope was to be given to the vernacular. Today we might ask: Is there a Latin Rite at all any more? Certainly there is no awareness of it. To most people the liturgy seems to be rather something for the individual congregation to arrange. Core groups make up their own "liturgies" from week to week, with an enthusiasm which is as amazing as it is misplaced. The really serious thing, in my view, is this fundamental breakdown of liturgical consciousness."



Excellent quote!!!



Catholic 'Latin-Haters' might want to take a glance at Arieh's quote as well!

Ed Peters

Thomas, right on.

Re seminaries, in case no one has noticed, the reform is on. It doesn't happen over night. It just doesn't. But it is happening. One either acknowledges that, or one doesn't, but either it doesn't change the reality that the reform is on. Finally.

A Williams

I just pray that nothing stops it!


Well, you asked ;-)

Enforce ex corde ecclesiae
Establish a 23rd rite, the Anglican Use, and make it normative for the English-speaking world. Invite CANA, AMiA and the global south Anglicans in.
Repeal the excreble bulla exurge domini and recognize the orders and eucharist of the evangelical movement of the Augsburg Confession

Ok, well, you asked. Now back to your regular programming.

Tim J.

Repeal Exurge Domini? Interesting suggestion.

Are you now willing to retract Luther's 41 errors?


I'm looking forward with great expectation to his visit to my home country, Brazil.

May St. Peter pray for BXVI.


I hope that B16 will put down that book he's working on to attend to some of the very critical problems in the Church, the biggest of all being the effeminacy of the post-Vatican II Church and the lack of men in the pews.

A good start would be a total ban on homosexuals in the priesthood.

I hope he finally does something about that wife-killer who was married in a Catholic Church and the very evil bishop who let him.

I want him to attend to that problem of the treasonous-commie-gay-male-prostitute-abortion-loving-gay-sex-worshipping priest who is now writing my laws as a member of parliament in my country. Oh, and maybe do something about the bishop of his diocese who gave him extra special personal permission to run for elected office. (Ha, ha, I know, I know, fat chance. But a guy can dream can't he?)

If he really wants to impress he can ask for the resignation of that gay-civil-union-supporting Cardinal who gave that evil former leader of my country (who brought abortion, contraception to my country and whose legacy brought gay marriage and now gay adoption and just yesterday 3 fathers and 7 mothers per group marriage family) a full Catholic funeral with all the pomp and circumstance complete with Communist Dictators with the blood of tens of thousands of Catholics on their stained, unrepentant, possibly-now-rigor-mortised hands.

An apology on behalf of the papacy for abandoning so many sheep to the wolves over the past 40 years and a promise that it will never happen again would be nice in 2007.

I want him to dismantle the Annulment Industry (also known as Big Catholic Divorce) and use all the money and resources that disappear into this abyss of lies to the poor.

I want him to stop granting asylum to that terrorist gun-runner bishop in Vatican City.

I want him to continue with those emergency special papal masses for peace that seemed to start not when Jews were being kidnapped and murdered by barbarian terrorists but rather precisely when Jews started defending themselves from kidnapping and murdering barbarian terrorists and which stopped precisely when Jews stopped defending themselves from the kidnapping and murdering barbarian terrorists and not after the kidnapped Jews who weren't already murdered were returned safely to their terribly suffering families.

I hope that every Cardinal appointed in 2007 is a non-European. And in 2008, and 2009...

I want him to do something about the shuffling around of child-molesting priests by their bishops that is *still* going on as Rod Dreher can attest.

I hope he has the courage to enforce Canon Law in 2007, or honourably resign and step aside to make room for another who will.

I would like him to sincerely invite Cardinal Reginato Martino to join the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church that our Lord Jesus Christ founded for the salvation of all men.

And last and probably least, I hope he takes on the issue of the environment and do something to save that endangered species known as the altar-boy.

And that's just what I'd like him to do in 2007. For 2008 I hope he can vanquish Feminism, call for another Crusade to drive the barbarians back into the desert from whence they came, reinstate the death penalty in Vatican City State to the end the confusion about what the Catholic Church *really* teaches about this matter, and last but certainly not least, find a way to get Mark Shea to stop torturing us with his insufferable blog.



Okay, the total ban on homosexuals in the priesthood -- that, I grant you, is on par with what the Pope should, in fact, do; which, I believe, he and his predecessor had taken the steps to do so already when you consider (Thank God!) the current standards of candidate acceptance into the seminary.

However, your consequent rambling is too incredibly short-sighted and politically-slanted, to say the least.

Besides, what do you think of the Pope??? Super-Man???

He has as much power to make things so as does the President of the United States has the power to bring about world peace!

Also, in terms of the Jewish state -- Yes, they do have the right to defend themselves, especially given the almost daily hostilities that they endure in that part of the world.

Yet, you must also take into consideration the Christians native to those lands, those who are actually the descendents of the original early Christians in that very region, who actually also suffer such persecution in these lands and, in fact, under the Jews.

I did not know just how terrible their plight was until I had seen a video on EWTN a year ago that depicted their struggles in that region to the point where the cradle of Christianity is soon to be depleted of the very Christians that had once originally lived there due to the oppression they face on a daily basis and have no choice but either to get out of the country or risk their lives should they remain there.

They even showed a Christian family whose house was bombed indiscriminately by Israeli forces in the middle of the night. It was just a good thing that somehow the children of the household were not hurt.

Add to that the fact that several Protestants (not all) usually are so pro-Israeli regardless of policy, neglecting that their fellow Christian brothers and sisters are actually suffering in that region due to a certain of these.

In other words, we need to pray for our Christian brothers and sisters out there and not act as if they do not exist or even matter. Remember that these may very well be the descendents of the very Christians we read of within the pages of the New Testament Scripture itself!


I hate to get into scary territory, but the burden of having all these ad limina meetings could become an argument in favor of spinning off new patriarchates.


Tim, I think it would be valuable to know what they were and discuss them. The Confutation of the Augsburg Confession agreed heartily with much of it, and there were vastly fewer than 40 disagreements, and they weren't sure that there -were- disagreements so they worded things like "if this is meant . . . we are most glad to see this, but if this is meant. . . . we must object"

If only Luther could have dealt with disagreement like that.

ron chandonia

I read this list of comments with dismay that so many Catholics think the restoration of the Latin mass is the most pressing issue facing the Catholic Church. Thank God for Augustine!

As for me, I am just hoping that Benedict does not cardinalize the archbishop of Washington, where the mass is evidently nothing more than a photo op for opportunistic politicians.


I hate to get into scary territory, but the burden of having all these ad limina meetings could become an argument in favor of spinning off new patriarchates.


Wasn't that what the Kasper-Ratzinger debate was all about back then??? I'd appreciate somebody's take on that one.

Some Day

Ad limina meetings are still very important.
Many bishops seem to forget that even though the Pope is miles away, it does not mean they are not under his jurisdicition and subordinate to him.
Many priests forget that too, especially when reminded of something ordered by or said by the Pope, they say "oh no, so and so is incharge, oh and yeah you know the pope is the pope."

I see more apostolic financial exhortations than reminders of proclamations of the Pope.


Many bishops seem to forget that even though the Pope is miles away, it does not mean they are not under his jurisdicition and subordinate to him.

Thanks, Some Day.

As I recall though, it appears that it is for this very reason that folks like Kasper favored greater pastoral flexibility for local churches (euphemistically characterizing such doctrinal disagreements with Rome as 'diversity') rather than the 'centralism' they accuse of the Church of Rome as appearing but dictatorial.

Unfortunately, such folks seem to ignore Petrine Authority; to which Ratzinger (I think) wisely retorted:

"The point is that there is only one Bride, only one Body of Christ, not many brides or many bodies. That the one Body has many parts does not abrogate the superordinating principle of unity. Diversity becomes richness only through underlying unity."

Although, not having been engaged in all the aspects of this debate, I would more than welcome any who have greater knowledge of these matters and the events that transpired.

Though, I must admit that I love the author who had written the following concerning Central Authority being evident in History, Tradition and even in Scripture:

"Yet Scripture and tradition amply testify to the presence of a centralized authority structure from the beginning of the Church. Not only does the New Testament portray Christ as explicitly commissioning the Twelve, investing them with power (to heal, cast out demons, etc.) and authority (to teach, baptize, forgive sins, "bind and loose," etc.), but it has Christ proclaiming that He will establish His Church upon Peter, whose name He changes from "Simon" to "Cephas" (from the Aramaic word for "Rock"), and bestowing upon him the unique power of the "Keys of the Kingdom." Petrine primacy is evident even from the circumstantial details of the citation of the Twelve in the New Testament. For example, the second most commonly cited apostle in the New Testament is John, "the beloved disciple," whose name appears a total of 30 times. But the most frequently cited apostle, Peter, is mentioned 179 times, and in each listing of a group of the apostles, regardless of the order in which the others are named, his name always heads the list. Beyond this, there are numerous additional things one could point to, such as the manner in which Peter exercises leadership in the selection of Judas' successor in the first chapter of Acts, or his prominent role in the Council of Jerusalem (Acts 15), even though the Council took place in the city where, according to tradition, James was the local bishop.

The hierarchical structure of the early Church is amply attested in the New Testament. The first episcopal synod, far from occurring only in the third century after Christ, is recorded in the Book of Acts as having taken place under the episcopal oversight of Peter and James themselves, in Jerusalem, where they met to deliberate over norms of ecclesiastical discipline to be imposed on gentile Christians in distant Antioch (in modern-day Turkey).

Moreover, to underline the divine authority of their decree, they explicitly identify their decision with the will of the Holy Spirit, declaring: "it has seemed good to the Holy spirit and to us to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things" (Acts 15:28, emphasis added).

Further, the New Testament itself uses the hierarchical distinctions between bishops, priests, and deacons, even if the writers are not careful to distinguish the fact that bishops are also priests (presbyters) and yet how they also differ from other priests.

In any case, it is abundantly clear from the writings of Ignatius of Antioch early in the second century, that this threefold distinction was already widely in use and conceptually clear (Letter to the Magnesians, 6, 1; 13, 1; Letter to the Trallians, 3, 1; 7, 2; Letter to the Philadelphians, 7, 1). Furthermore, as early as A.D. 80, we see the bishop of Rome (Pope Clement I, in a letter to the church in Corinth) exercising his authority over a local church in distant Greece, simply assuming that his jurisdiction extends to all particular churches in certain matters of ecclesiastical discipline as well as doctrine."


Given the growth in the number of bishops, it does seem like the Church is nearing some sort of minor organizational crisis. Generally speaking, it's difficult to directly supervise more than 10 people or so, 100 is something of a practical limit, and 500 is pretty much impossible. I get the impression that it's becoming too easy for rogue bishops to hide behind groups like the USCCB with no one bishop ever being held particularly accountable. The Pope doesn't appoint the conference leadership, and although the existence of positions of president, vice-president are noted on the web site, you won't actually find those positions or any other bishops on their published org charts (try it!). In my uninformed opinion, that probably needs to change, either by the Pope asserting direct authority over the conferences and appointing leaders, or dismantling the conferences and setting up a more accountable structure.

But it's easy to play "armchair pope". Actually wearing the red shoes is another matter altogether.

In my uninformed opinion, that probably needs to change, either by the Pope asserting direct authority over the conferences and appointing leaders, or dismantling the conferences and setting up a more accountable structure.

The existence of the USCCB and similar organizations alrams me too. I recently had to study up on some issues relating to the Anglican Communion, and The Episcopal Church (US-based). The Episcopal Church has so much autonomy, they could pull out the Communion (or be forced out as a body). It makes me nervous about having large close knit administrative groups in the Church, to much opportunity too rebel.


That was me.


I would hope he would take the time out of his busy schedule, call all of the leaders of the false faiths of the world together, pray to mecca with the Moslems, remove all signs of Catholicism including Crufifixes so not to offend the Jews, remove the blessed sacrament from the sacred altar and place Buddah on top, and ask for a Hindu Priestess to mark his forehead with cow dung all on the same day, and then run over to a temple in Germany and pray with the rabbis for the coming of the "messiah"! And then afterwards proclaim a "New and revised" 10 commandments like was done at Assissi

On wait I am sorry...This has already been done by JPII and B16 already!!!

Well maybe B16 can top that and invite some Aetheists whom I read the leading Cardinal in the church says pose less of a threat to the church than traditional catholicism

Tim J.

Nice post, John. I can always count on you for my daily dose of bile, bitterness, and balderdash.

David B.


Do you have a life outside of posting run-on hate-filled comments ? I'm serious.


It would be awesome to see the Paul 6-Bugnini masonic/protestant novus ordo mass outlawed and the 1500 yr old Missa Tridentina restored. The laizing of apostates living and dead like Mahoney, Brown, Lustiger Daneel, Weakland & Villot.The end to the abuses of grabbing communion in the hand, tabernacle disappearances, novus ordo barns aka churches alter women, so called eucharistic ministers. Make the priest get off his backside during mass and say the mass not have his lay flunkies do it for him while he sits in his presbyter's chair and sleeps during Mass.


Post script Would be nice to see apostate high profile "Catholics" like T. Kennedy, Pilosi, Kerry and a host of other American and European "Catholic" politicians EXCOMMUNICATED.


The end to the abuses of grabbing communion in the hand


Make the priest get off his backside during mass and say the mass not have his lay flunkies do it for him while he sits in his presbyter's chair and sleeps during Mass


Also, I'm sure that considering the size of some churches and its parishes, if the main celebrant, the priest himself, served Communion alone to ALL THOSE IN CHURCH, THERE'D BE THE NICE 5-HOUR WAIT THAT I BET ALL THOSE TAKING COMMUNION & THE PRIEST HIMSELF & THE FOLKS WAITING TO ATTEND THE NEXT MASS WOULD ENJOY!!!

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