The Horror of Surrogate Religions
#1
Here's a rather interesting, short article, first featured at Il Foglio and translated by Rorate. Its basically a cursory view of some secular religions, with the accompanying premise formulated by Léon Bloy (and quote by pope Francis), ”Those who don’t pray to God, are praying to the Devil”.

Firstly there's the more subtle form of rebelion that is, though it might not appear, helping the destruction of the Church of Christ, that is, those with a tendency to spiritualize and individualize religion:

Quote:If the churches aren’t filled with the faithful, sooner or later they will become mosques or at best, museums: complaining about it is useless, it would be more useful to go to Mass and not do what my friend does every Sunday i.e. rather than taking part in the Eucharist she reads St. Catherine thinking she’s doing alright, instead, she’s taking part in the collapse of a religion gradually reduced to spirituality, subjectivism and intellectual Onanism. Those who don’t pray to the Lord, as the Lord Himself requested, (“Do this in remembrance of me…”) are not even praying to St. Catherine, and without realizing it, they are praying to something else.

We see this so much at Christmas when people, on their third glass of wine, think that the bit of liberal propaganda dressed up in Gospel language they discussed for s short while is all the prayer/worship/religion they need.
But there are those with a trad bent who are disillusioned, but still disregard the third commandment as optional, and those, who I'd say are in a far worse position, who deviate from the approved (either by law or by tradition, and the later is far more binding as it should be the element informing law) Liturgies.

Then there are the more obvious transgressors:

Quote:Another friend became the director of a museum and invited me to visit her office. I told her that I wouldn’t be coming, as I had bad vibrations from the building itself, and she looked at me undecided, wondering whether I was crazy. In effect, it may appear something obsessive, with [all] the secularized clergy we have around, to insist on the sacred as I do, but I have no other alternative: “Sensitivity is the genius of everyone” says Baudelaire, and my genius is zeal for the House of God.

The very contemporary museum run by my friend fills up an ancient abbey emptied by Napoleon and this sounds like something annihilating to me. Jean Clair wrote entire volumes on the museum as a surrogate temple and I have no need of reopening them to know how true this is.  That emptiness tends always to filling itself up is a psychological law. Women without children to embrace, easily give themselves to a little dog, they talk to it, they kiss and cuddle it, they buy it little dainties.  Father Rosario Struscio, a missionary in India and spiritual father to Madre Theresa, on his return to Italy after many years, was greatly disturbed at “seeing so many women going around with cats in their arms, as if they were children.  A Country that has substituted children for cats is a Country with no tomorrow.” It is even a law of city planning: the bell-towers in Milan, which not even archbishops believe in anymore (as the new churches without bell-towers show), have now been replaced with skyscrapers.

“In the desert of  their  abandonment, the people resign themselves to building the golden calf,” wrote the theologian, Pierangelo Sequeri. Or green idols. If there is no longer belief in Our Lady, the Mother of God, then there is surrender to the fascination of Gaia, the Earth goddess. Clergy yielding to lust, to human senses, need not frighten, but the apostasy of those (as the philosopher of Religion, Marco Vannini retains) “that have lost faith in the Divinity of Christ, and have thus annulled the novelty of the Gospel, by bending themselves in adoration to the world and its Lord” are immensely more dangerous than any Francesca Chaouqui.  It is the Dark Society (sic) that projected beasts on the façade of St. Peter’s, specifically on the day of the Immaculate Conception. 

I must say that I know this eerie feeling when walking in a museum, especially one with religious art, which are so out of place, and others places consecrated to secularism, say, malls, cafés, most restaurants and, by now, most of the streets of the city, etc. Really, its some strange feeling of a kinda of futility that leaves me wanting to go to Church—and so, perhaps, I enter some Church. A stranger in a strange land, indeed—something I never thought I'd consider myself, certainly not at my age.

This is a short article, and this is good because it probably means its a popular article and I'm glad the truth about the lie of secularism is getting out there. There is no secularism, but only an opposite (even if by way of deformation) religion. I'm glad he mentions Napoleon too, since he is not a figure that brought order to a nation destroyed by revolution, but he was the man who cemented the revolution, who made sure that never again will France return to anything resembling altar and throne.
Also, its refreshing to see an article that tries to tie events with their transcendent meaning, as surely the meaning of history is not immanent to it, as revolutionaries claim, in some point in the future, distant or near, but is transcendent to it. History is but the playing out of eternal verities and spiritual struggle. I'm glad the author doesn't go into despair mode lamenting the downfall of Christendom, or going into a search of a savior.

So, any opinions?
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#2
All I can say is that my conscience feels cleaner making sure I attend Mass on Sunday's and holy days and going to confession once a month or so than it did when I was strictly a home aloner. I still much prefer praying the hours and the Jesus Prayer most of the time but it's better to still be a part of the Church somehow.

We can't forget it has been an ecumenical council and the popes and the hierarchy that have given many of us little choice but to remain distant,skeptical and exiles. They have undermined the Church, not us layman who prefer to cling to Christ in our own ways.

Personally I desire to somehow be a part of the Church, but I have absolutely no love for or trust in the popes,the hierarchy or much of modern Catholicism. Still, there is grace there. There is grace even in the new rites.




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