Restoring Catholic Life - Three Ideas
#1
I've lifted this from a different post of mine.

Too many of us, myself I give first, like to imagine us as Catholic traditionalists but are we?  Are we really working towards the Restoration, or just enjoying a shade of retro?

As I see it, the Church and the teachings of our holy religion are like a chiseled castle that weathers the fluidity of the world's elements.  However, as His Excellency, Bishop Morlino very, there is this sense that religion is a 'moralistic therapeutic deism.'  The Faith is not real like that stone fortress, but rather more like dabs of ice cream: just a few scoops at a times leaves us feeling satiated.

Embracing a Catholic pattern of life, along the lines of St. Benedict, is a tough sell in general and not much easier in many pockets of tradition.

I can't get anyone at my Oratory  (aside from those who already had personal devotions) to actually pray the parts of the Divine Office, the Little Office or even pieces of it.  However, dozens of people will spend probably hours a week (or even a day) wondering about the end times, where the Grand Monarch will make his seat, and whether the Pope will move to Iowa or Panama during the tribulation.

To be clear, I'm not criticizing the opening poster; this is an important news item and people should know well the dangers of the modern world.  Indeed I'm taking this as an opportunity to encourage us to organize ourselves in a Catholic sense.  Again, as a simple examples:

Public prayer of the Church > End Times speculation. 

Focusing on our appointed work/jobs > Engaging in theological curiosity (thus neither supporting our families well nor molding a Catholic mind effectively)

The toughest part of Our Lady's commands at Fatima is for us to manage well our states in life.  We lay want to play Priest or Religious, but enjoy the comforts of this life.  Too many Priests and Religious ape pop culture, but want to command that respect of the Office (especially the privilege of collecting money!)  Or perhaps, we envy another person's position and neglect our own station. 

What we lack in modern times, among other things, is borders and roles.  It's understandable because of the Internet, high speed travel, ease of daily comfort, etc.  My recipe for getting back a Catholic sense is:

Bring back the Minor Orders.  Young men should deal with ecclesiastical administration/ditch digging tasks, not bossy women.  Those of us men who do these tasks should have the office clearly assigned for the benefit of all.

Live the Liturgy.  Scrap the insane, abusive, and painfully blemished Novus Ordo Sacrifice and go back to what we always had.  Indeed, we need to live the Liturgical Year and the best source out there is Dom Gueranger's collection.  But I actually mean 'live it' in a literal, real sense.  Lent is a time of personal sacrifice and was always a time of harsh fasting.  It is an embarrassment that the Latin Church has jettisoned this to the point of only two days being 'fasts.'  Our Lord went 40 days and nights without food and He said that some demons can only be cast out through prayer and fasting.  Giving up bubble gum or chocolate is not a Lenten fast any of us in the West should feel worthy to present to Christ at the Day of Judgement. 

Promotion of the Divine Office and the Little Office.  Lace dress is great and feeling like a knight taking on the evil world even better.  But before we can expect to have Jonathan's martial command, we need to emulate the humility of Our Lady.  Praying parts of the Office or the Little Office gives the entire day meaning and teaches better than any Bible Study program the history of this divine drama, the epic of Creation.
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#2
What I see is a wanting to return to some romanticized time of heraldry, as the only form of Christendom. Big mistake. If we are to return to "Feast Days" and the praying the Divine Office and all that entails including minor orders, be ready to give up modern life and affluence. Poverty is what insures those things. I don't mean poverty like in the Navajo Nation, but our expectations are way to high. You can't be a teacher unless you play by the rules of the school system, and that means going to the Cathedral first for Lauds and Mass before school is not happening. The way forward is to start small businesses. Then you can open at the hour you'd like and close at the hour you'd like.  It all comes down to subsidiarity. Are we willing to give up jobs in Big Biz. with bennys like pensions, and for that matter the G'ment or Banking, and return to more modest living with no certainties ? The society in which we live will not allow for that. A teacher can't drive 35 minutes to Church for Lauds and Mass, then one and a half hours later, drive another hour and fifteen minutes to teach starting 10:30 am. Things could change if suburbia disappeared and people worked in small business locally.
Then we could walk to Church, and walk to the Shop, and open and close in a rhythm with the Church. 

tim
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#3
Tim, thanks for reading and replying!

To be clear, I'm not suggesting laymen adopt the Divine Office (Trent/1911/1960) in toto or even at all.  It's a clerical duty.

I've been promoting the Little Office, particularly Prime and Vespers, but preferably all of it. Reciting each hour in Latin with the exception of Matins and Lauds, takes maybe 5 minutes.  Vespers a few more.  My understanding is that this was through the 16th Century, a very common practice by literate people. 

My reasoning for promoting this is that the domestic church is a disaster as much as the rest of things.  I see a public prayer tied to the hours of the day as especially edifying.  When we pray as individuals, that's good.  Even better we should pray in groups.  Indeed the best prayer is that of Sacred Society. 

The Little Office is short enough to be prayed even by busy people.  But I see it this way: how much time does the average Catholic watch TV or listen to the Top 20?  How much time does the average traditionalist spend poring over speculations on papal intrigues, the Grand Monarch or the End Times?

In both cases, it is hard to argue that these practitioners could 'go to their Father with hands replete with good works.'  In the former case, it is a waste of time at best and in the latter scenario, a form of lukewarmness or misplaced curiosity.

In any case, I agree with your remarks particularly when you write

(02-19-2013, 11:00 AM)Tim Wrote: If we are to return to "Feast Days" and the praying the Divine Office and all that entails including minor orders, be ready to give up modern life and affluence. Poverty is what insures those things. I don't mean poverty like in the Navajo Nation, but our expectations are way to high....

The way forward is to start small businesses. Then you can open at the hour you'd like and close at the hour you'd like.  It all comes down to subsidiarity. Are we willing to give up jobs in Big Biz. with bennys like pensions, and for that matter the G'ment or Banking, and return to more modest living with no certainties ?

It is not common to find Catholics of this mindset.  It is a real meditation, especially for Lent.  We can say 'how am I ever going to get though this' or try to match St. Peter's confidence (faith) that he would walk on the waves with Our Lord, even if it seemed impossible.  We know after all that respectable people go to college (rack up massive debts), work at a major company (probably doing things not very congruent with the Faith), have three children (thanks to NFP or the pill) and then can reap the (usurious) income of their 401ks, pensions, etc. 

This mentality will be very hard to untangle because this materialist confusion is so embedded in America, to the point of annual hordes of people beating or shooting one another to get boxes of toxic slave-made junk.  In fact I don't think any of this happens organically, but will only come after a terrible physical chastisement, which we might be in the opening stages of.
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#4
King, the Little Office of the BMV would be wonderful, if prayed by the Laity.

tim
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#5
The Little Office is something that I looked into. I have decided to do something different for Lent.

The thing is king, I see many trads making sacrifices. I know of a couple who trade off going to Adoration at 3am regularly. I know many families with 3-5 kids and not knowing how are they going to afford a vehicle for the whole family to be in. Many families choose to HS. Not because it's fun, or it feels good. It's not like we mothers have nothing else to do. But it is done as a sacrifice. Any family could benefit from an added income. But how many families choose not to. for the sake of their children.

So I can't really relate to your anger against trads, since the ones I know are suffering under economic hardships, HSing, driving 60miles one way for Mass, and still having babies. And unless I am wrong, you don't have a choice in contributing to a retirement plan. Which we all know will be worthless when the time comes.

I don't spend hours and hours looking up chastisement stuff. I have, over the years, formed my opinion of what is going to happen. And yes, I did take the big meteorite as a sign from God. It was a wake up call to those in the Vatican. To me, it not only highlighted the importance of the Consecration, but it made me realize how quickly God's wrath could change everything, and how much we deserve it. We know what the BVM said about "fire falling from the sky". I thought to myself, what if this happened right now? How can I prepare my children, they are so young. What about all the people I know that wouldn't have a clue? So my response is more prayer, uniting myself to the Passion. Realizing my absolute dependence on God, and how precious my relationship with my Heavenly Mother is.

So please do not make general rants mixing trads and non practicing Catholics. It can be a bit disheartening. I understand your frustration. But sometimes encouragement will get you farther.
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#6
(02-19-2013, 11:00 AM)Tim Wrote: What I see is a wanting to return to some romanticized time of heraldry, as the only form of Christendom. Big mistake. If we are to return to "Feast Days" and the praying the Divine Office and all that entails including minor orders, be ready to give up modern life and affluence. Poverty is what insures those things. I don't mean poverty like in the Navajo Nation, but our expectations are way to high. You can't be a teacher unless you play by the rules of the school system, and that means going to the Cathedral first for Lauds and Mass before school is not happening. The way forward is to start small businesses. Then you can open at the hour you'd like and close at the hour you'd like.  It all comes down to subsidiarity. Are we willing to give up jobs in Big Biz. with bennys like pensions, and for that matter the G'ment or Banking, and return to more modest living with no certainties ? The society in which we live will not allow for that. A teacher can't drive 35 minutes to Church for Lauds and Mass, then one and a half hours later, drive another hour and fifteen minutes to teach starting 10:30 am. Things could change if suburbia disappeared and people worked in small business locally.
Then we could walk to Church, and walk to the Shop, and open and close in a rhythm with the Church.   

tim

+JMJ+

I don't post much. Haven't in a while. But Tim, you've nailed it above. A Catholic economy is a start, but I personally believe we need to give up the life of affluence, the "modern life", and live Gospel Poverty. I don't mean a return to the middle ages. I guess I mean Catholic neighbourhoods, communities, businesses... Economies...

But we must reject "suburbia". Families could move to towns in diocese friendly to tradition. Lincoln, NE comes to mind. Take these towns over. Migration. Diaspora. There will be non-Catholics living there. Good opportunity to live our Faith in front of  non-believers.

JAMDG

James
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