Michael Voris is a self-labeled Traditional Catholic who "is the president and founder of St. Michael's Media, which creates short videos and full length digital television programs that appear on the website ChurchMilitant.tv." (source: Wikipedia)
Twelve days ago, I wrote a lengthy response to a local Catholic blogger who was responding to Michael Voris who was responding to Fr. Robert Barron who was responding to some fan who asked him about Rob Bell.
Speaking of vortex...dizzy yet?
In my previous post, I defended Mr. Voris' criticism of Fr. Barron's declaration that there is "good hope that all are saved."
By and large, I would tend to support Mr. Voris and his mission to try to restore the Church. While I am not always a fan of the style in which he delivers his message (and sometimes find it lacking in substance), I have nonetheless cited him in past writings and even promoted some of his videos to friends and family. This time around, however, I am forced to declare where he is wrong.
Mr. Voris puts out a regular segment called "The Vortex" in which, he claims, "lies and falsehoods are trapped and exposed." For some time, I haven't quite understood that slogan since, correct me if I'm wrong, usually what enters into a vortex is trapped, mutilated/obliterated, then spit out in a tree.
And, unfortunately, that is what has happened here. Mr. Voris has what I like to call "papal blinders." Glasses which allow him to see what every person is doing wrong except for the Pope.
This is indeed typical of many who attend local indult Latin Masses rather than an SSPX chapel. They are willing to point the finger at anyone and everyone - priests, bishops, cardinals, laity, even other traditionalist Catholics like the SSPX faithful - everyone except the Pope. For them, the Pope walks on water. The rare times where he it does seem he made a mistake always elicits one of the following explanations:
a.) "It's the media's fault. They are perverting his words. He didn't mean that."
b.) "He may have said X, but what he clearly actually meant was X."
c.) They stay silent on the matter and then wait until an apology is offered, then praising his humility.
All of the above will be seen on full display in the episode of The Vortex which I am going to break down below.
Worth noting, Mr. Voris is openly not part of the SSPX and does not subscribe to their position. In the past he has effectively said he doesn't have a dog in the fight, and in more candid conversation at a local event, he told a friend of mine flatly, "Stay away from the SSPX."
Now the timing of this is quite ironic because a few days ago I got into a bit of a charitable debate about this very problem with a close friend.
My statement was that I would never quote somebody on a matter where their actions do not mirror their words. On a broader scale, I was expressing my frustration with those Traditional Catholics who insist on repeatedly quoting the last 5 Popes to try to support their Traditional positions on subjects like:
- Liturgical Abuse
- Hermeneutic of Continuity
- All other scandalous topics
In a nutshell, I likened it to some of the following examples (that such quotes could by hypothetically found):
- I would never quote Obama saying we need to reduce the national debt/deficit to try to support that cause
- I would never quote Adolf Hitler to support a humanitarian cause
- I would never quote Colonel Sanders about the importance of healthy eating
- I would never quote Sam Walton about supporting local business
See where I am going with this?
Actions speak louder than words. I am not saying that quoting the last 5 Popes is wrong. No. I am saying that if I am trying to explain to somebody why certain liturgical practices (abuses) are wrong, i am not going to quote Pope John Paul II about it because he allowed it to happen during his Pontificate and even took part in many scandals!
And this was the nature of the complaint I was voicing. Great...so Pope Benedict said we needed to restore the Liturgy. So he said it needs to remain Christocentric, and that the novelties need to be cut out.
Okay. Don't tell me...SHOW ME! Put it into practice! Start suspending priests or even excommunicating them if necessary! DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT!
Uncle Rico can only tell you he can throw a football "over them mountains" so many times before you finally say, "enough talk...prove it!"
So, without further ado, I'd like to call this post THE OPTOMETRIST.
Where St. Raphael is Invoked to Remove Papal Blinders So That Well-Intentioned Catholics Can Finally See Clearly.
Segmented clips of Mr. Voris' video will be posted below with responses under each of them.
Emphasis and pronunciation do matter. Nobody can dispute that. But here we go already blaming the media for the reasons why everyone from atheists, rock stars, and President Obama love Pope Francis. Of course! It's the "media hijacking" of the image of Pope Francis why all of these people love him. It can't possibly be that he refuses to condemn anyone for certain sins or even any particular sin itself as damnable. It can't possibly be because of his hyper-emphasis on God's mercy without any discussion of God's just wrath. No. When in doubt, blame the "fawning diabolical media." After all, if it weren't the media's fault, and if all those who willingly put themselves on the left side of our Lord really did love our present Pope, we would be forced to consider the the following warning of our Divine Savior:
"Woe to you when men shall bless you: for according to these things did their fathers to the false prophets." (Lk 6:26)
Thank goodness it's the media's fault.
PRESCRIPTION: One daily multivitamin of true humility, honesty, and courage to assess situations without predisposition.
Here we see the typical back pedaling done when Rome comes out and changes its tune on a subject. When this interview as originally released, the entire mainstream Neo-Con Catholic Media was typing itself into carpal tunnel and talking itself into frenzied laryngitis trying to find ways to defend the Pope's words about the supremacy of conscience, not wanting to convert atheists, etc.
Two months later, the interview has been taken down from the Vatican web site, and they are all now saying, "SEE! We told you those weren't ACTUALLY the Pope's words!"
In light of this removal of said interview, two things still need to be pointed out:
1a.) If the interview wasn't accurate, how did it ever even get posted to the Vatican web site in the first place?
1b.) Why did it take 2 months to take it down?
2.) Which parts of it were actually embellished or inaccurate, and which parts were really Pope Francis' words?
DIAGNOSIS: Deflecting and Back Pedaling
PRESCRIPTION: 1 tsp twice daily of Keep Probing for Truth, Don't Fall for PR Stunts
First of all, he states there are only two sides: those faithful traditional Catholics who insist on the hermeneutic of continuity, and the Modernists who are trying to destroy the Church who insist on a hermeneutic of rupture.
To quote his Fr. Barron video, "STOP RIGHT THERE! THAT is DEEPLY misleading."
The statement that there are only two parties involved here shows just how much Mr. Voris discounts and discredits the Society's position.
The situation is actually as follows:
Sedevacantists: Hermeneutic of Rupture - the Pope must not be the Pope (WRONG)
SSPX: Hermeneutic of Rupture - we reject all that is not in continuity with Tradition (BINGO 1 Thess 5:21, Gal 1:8-9, etc.)
Pseudo-Traditionalists: Hermeneutic of Continuity - it just needs to be properly interpreted...even though Rome refuses to give us such a definitive interpretation (WRONG)
Modernists: Hermeneutic of Continuity - we promise it's all legit...we just needed to update the Church (WRONG)
Liberal Wingnuts: What's a hermeneutic and who cares? We just want to see women ordained, abortion approved, and homosexual relations praised as normal (WRONG)
What's more, he refuses to assess the problem with these repeatedly controversial "off the cuff remarks" and instead just defends them (in this video and others) as Francis' personal style, like it or leave it. So one minute he wants to blame the media for twisting his words, but the next he refuses to consider that perhaps it might be a bit more prudent to choose his words more wisely considering the ravenous media has been perpetually licking its chops since he came out on the ledge in St. Peter's Square.
Finally, he states that it is the Modernists who want the Church to be seen as "malleable according to the times." This is indeed a mark of Modernists. But is it not also sadly at the heart of the very first declaration of Ressourcement by Pope John XXIII? Did not Pope John say it was time to update the Church, to consider new ways for the Church to behave in these modern times?
Just to make it clear to Mr. Voris, I will present just one key quotation comparison so that he may begin to probe deeper into the traits and tendencies of our recent Popes:
Fr. Felix Sarda y Salvany, What is Liberalism? (Imprimatur 1899)
[Liberalists] have a horror of any coercive element in faith; any chastisement of error shocks their tender susceptibilities, and they detest any Catholic legislation in the direction of what they are please to call intolerance. THE SYLLABUS OF PIUS IX IS A NIGHTMARE TO THEM, a most inopportune, dominating, harsh and peremptory document, calculated to offend the sensibilities of the Protestant and modern world; it need not be accepted as an infallible utterance, and, if accepted, must be taken in a very modern sense.
Cardinal Ratzinger, Principles of Catholic Theology, 1987, pp. 381-382
Gaudium et Spes is a revision of the Syllabus of Pius IX, a kind of countersyllabus...Since then many things have changed.
PRESCRIPTION: 1 shot of Everclear-up-your-misconceptions and stop trying to claim that Ecumenism, Collegiality, Religious Freedom and the Novus Ordo Missae are in Continuity with Tradition
As I stated above, Modernists do not believe in a Hermeneutic of Rupture. They believe, or at least publicly profess, a Hermeneutic of Continuity. Modernists disguise their behavior. They veil it in orthodoxy so that the deep-seated heterodoxy isn't so easily seen. Some do this intentionally and with great malice. Others do it with a genuine heart and a genuinely misguided intellect.
Pope St. Pius X, Pascendi Dominici Gregis, 1907, #2-3,5
[Modernists] are more mischievous, the less conspicuously they appear...Nor indeed will he err in accounting them the most pernicious of all the adversaries of the Church. For as We have said, they put their designs for her ruin into operation not from without but from within; hence, the danger is present almost in the very veins and heart of the Church...none is more skillful, none more astute than they, in the employment of a thousand noxious arts; for they double the parts of rationalist and Catholic, and this so craftily that they easily lead the unwary into error...every Modernist sustains and comprises within himself many personalities; he is a philosopher, a believer, a theologian, an historian, a critic, an apologist, a reformer.
Pope St. Pius X, Pascendi Dominici Gregis, 1907, #18
So, too, acting on the principle that science in no way depends upon faith, when they treat of philosophy, history, criticism, feeling no horror at treading in the footsteps of Luther, they are wont to display a certain contempt for Catholic doctrines, or the Holy Fathers, for the Ecumenical Councils, for the ecclesiastical magisterium...they, on their side, after having blotted out the old theology, endeavour to introduce a new theology which shall follow the vagaries of their philosophers.
Pope Francis said the following: "Those who want everything clear and safe, who always look for disciplinarian solutions, who stubbornly try to recover a past that no longer exists will find nothing."
A past that no longer exists?
Or how about more recently in his latest Apostolic Exhortation: "Some of these customs may be beautiful, but they no longer serve as means of communicating the Gospel. We should not be afraid to re-examine them. At the same time, the Church has rules or precepts which may have been quite effective in their time, but no longer have the same usefulness for directing and shaping people’s lives." (#43)
As is typical of Modernists, they speak ambiguously and rarely with explicit denial of any revealed dogmatic truth, instead favoring a more "open to interpretation" approach which breeds chaos within the Church.
I'm not even going to comment on the assertion that Archbishop Marchetto has a "very traditionalist view of the documents of Vatican II."
But this supposedly "very public event" can hardly be considered as Pope Francis "bringing the lumber to the liberals and the modernists."
The reality is that he refuses to bring the lumber to any of these offenders because, after all, "who is [he] to judge?"
DIAGNOSIS: Denial, Refusal to Face Facts
PRESCRIPTION: Re-read (or read for the first time maybe) Pascendi Dominici Gregis by Pope St. Pius X.
Ah, so because Pope Francis is promoting the Council of Trent, he is smacking down Modernists?
Voris states that he is calling for the 450 year anniversary of the Council which fought the heresy of Martin Luther and John Calvin's Protestantism.
If this is really to be taken as Pope Francis smacking down heretics and heresy, then why, in just 4 short years, is the Church planning to CELEBRATE the 500 year anniversary of Luther's act of defiance?
Once again, I wish Mr. Voris would wake up.
Has Pope Francis read the Council of Trent documents? Or likewise, has Mr. Voris?
Pope Francis said he wishes to meditate upon the "abundant doctrine of Trent."
How about just one quote to consider right now:
"That our Catholic faith, without which it is impossible to please God, may, errors being purged away, continue in its own perfect and spotless integrity, and that the Christian people may not be carried about with every wind of doctrine." (Session 5, opening remarks on Original Sin)
There it is! The complete and utter repudiation of the heresy of ecumenism and "respect for all religions" which so many Popes warned about. Here's just a sampling from the last two centuries:
Pius VIII, Traditi Humilitati, 1829, #4Among these heresies belongs that foul contrivance of the sophists of this age who do not admit any difference among the different professions of faith and who think that the portal of eternal salvation opens for all from any religion.
Pope Gregory XVI, Summo Iugiter Studio, 1832, #3Quoting Pope St. Gregory the Great
"The holy universal Church teaches that it is not possible to worship God truly except in her and asserts that all who are outside of her will not be saved."
Pope Pius IX, Qui Pluribus, 1846, #15Also perverse is that shocking theory that it makes no difference to which religion one belongs, a theory greatly at variance even with reason. By means of this theory, those crafty men remove all distinction between virtue and vice, truth and error, honoral and vile action. They pretend that men can gain eternal salvation by the practice of any religion, as if there could ever be any sharing between justice and iniquity, any collaboration between light and darkness, or any agreement between Christ and Belial.
Pope Leo XIII, Custodi di Quella Fede, 1892, #15Everyone should avoid familiarity or friendship with anyone suspected of belonging to masonry or to affiliated groups. Know them by their fruits and avoid them. Every familiarity should be avoided, not only with those impious libertines who openly promote the character of the sect, but also with those who hide under the mask of universal tolerance, respect for all religions, and the craving to reconcile the maxims of the Gospel with those of the revolution. These men seek to reconcile Christ and Belial, the Church of God and the state without God.
Pope St. Pius X, Pascendi Dominici Gregis, 1907, #8Hence, Venerable Brethren, springs that ridiculous proposition of the Modernists, that every religion, according to the different aspect under which it is viewed, must be considered as both natural and supernatural...religious consciousness is given as the universal rule, to be put on an equal footing with revelation.
Pope Pius XI, Mortalium Animos, 1928, #2For which reason conventions, meetings and addresses are frequently arranged by these persons, at which a large number of listeners are present, and at which all without distinction are invited to join in the discussion, both infidels of every kind, and Christians, even those who have unhappily fallen away from Christ or who with obstinacy and pertinacity deny His divine nature and mission. Certainly such attempts can nowise be approved by Catholics, founded as they are on that false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good and praiseworthy, since they all in different ways manifest and signify that sense which is inborn in us all, and by which we are led to God and to the obedient acknowledgment of His rule. Not only are those who hold this opinion in error and deceived, but also in distorting the idea of true religion they reject it, and little by little. turn aside to naturalism and atheism, as it is called; from which it clearly follows that one who supports those who hold these theories and attempt to realize them, is altogether abandoning the divinely revealed religion.
Pope Pius XII, Humani Generis, 1950, #32They allege...the contemporary mind must look to the existence of things and to life, which is ever in flux. While scorning our philosophy, they extol other philosophies of all kinds, ancient and modern, oriental and occidental, by which they seem to imply that any kind of philosophy or theory, with a few additions and corrections if need be, can be reconciled with Catholic dogma. No Catholic can doubt how false this is.
There it is. Quotes from nearly every pre-conciliar Pope from the last two centuries explicitly condemning today's interfaith dialogue, ecumenism, respect of conscience and of other false religions, Assisi Gathering, joint Catholic-Jewish celebrations, etc.
Wake up, Mr. Voris! WAKE UP! Pope Francis recently said the Church needs to focus MORE on Ecumenism and "dialogue" and that, up until now, she hasn't done enough!
So apparently he thinks Assisi was just a small tidbit of the dreadful things to come!
Not that I think Mr. Voris will actually read this, but reading and listening to the following would help:
DIAGNOSIS: Wishful Thinking, Selective Reasoning
PRESCRIPTION: Cold Shower followed by Listening to Bishop Fellay's talk on Pope Francis
I am at the point of exasperation. This is where, when I first watched this video, I wanted to just turn it off if it weren't for the fraternal charity that welled up within my heart wishing to correct Mr. Voris and anyone subscribing to this line of thought.
I honestly don't know if Mr. Voris hasn't done his research, confused, or outright in denial.
Has he not seen this?
Or what about this?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f-1LLFbZJCA (wouldn't allow me to embed)
What about this?
By the way, the above link shows dancing of bishops and priests with choreography done by a man who has posed nude in a men's gay magazine.
Does all of this seem to suggest that our Holy Father, Pope Francis, is über concerned with ensuring that Liturgy?
If you still think so, how about now?
Check out the 7:50 mark for the appearance of our Divine Savior!! Nope...not in the Blessed Sacrament...in an oversized PUPPET MAN!!
With one fell swoop he puts all Traditionalist Catholics to shame and solidifies his utter repudiation for all things sacred and reverent by partaking in an ABOMINATION MASS!!
Of course we can keep going. How about how he banned the Franciscans in Italy from saying the Traditional Latin Mass?
Or how about his public praise of and pandering to Jews and Muslims? I have touched on both in the past:
DIAGNOSIS: Blindness or Lying
PRESCRIPTION: A Rude Awakening
"Say what you want about his comments, style, etc...Say what you want, but to portray Francis as the triumph of Modernism and reject-or of Tradition would mean you need to be committed."
Really? Then sign me up for immediate care.
DIAGNOSIS: Papalotry (http://www.cfnews.org/page10/page93/papalotry.html)
PRESCRIPTION: Lectio Divina of Galatians 1:8-9 and 2:11
Look, I am right there with Mr. Voris in wishing Pope Francis would start acting more like "Francis the Pope."
But so far, nothing gives me that indication.
I hope that if this post does somehow make it to Mr. Voris, he will see it as loving admonition and not any other way. I know that if one thing is for sure it is that he pours his heart and soul into his work and into trying to rightly call out some of the errors plaguing the Church and society today. But it's time to start tracing it all the way to the top when it applies and to stop living in a fairy tale where the Pope is a lone ranger battling a sea of enemies.
If you believe most of the Cardinals are corrupt/Modernists/liberals, then it only logically makes sense to believe they elected one of their own.
"God love you."
7 Then Tobias asked the angel, and said to him: I beseech thee, brother Azarias, tell me what remedies are these things good for, which thou hast bid me keep of the fish?
8 And the angel, answering, said to him: If thou put a little piece of its heart upon coals, the smoke thereof driveth away all kind of devils, either from man or from woman, so that they come no more to them.
9 And the gall is good for anointing the eyes, in which there is a white speck, and they shall be cured.
St. Raphael, Medicine of God, pray for us.