Skip to comments.Tradition 24 Hours a Day: Msgr.( Sweeney Succumbs To Liberal Elite
Posted on 12/29/2001 12:11:30 AM PST by shrinkermdEdited on 04/22/2004 11:45:49 PM PDT by Jim Robinson. [history]
Our Lady of Peace Church, just over Highway 101 from Intel Corp.'s headquarters in Santa Clara, Calif., is one of the more remarkable Catholic churches that I have attended in America since coming here from Britain too many decades ago.
(Excerpt) Read more at interactive.wsj.com ...
IMHO, the Second Vatican Council was a grave error. Not just for abandoning the physical and ritual trappings of the past 2000 years (though that was criminal in itself), but for the doctrinal confusion it created (for example, suggesting -- without quite saying -- that perhaps some people make it to heaven without Christ). The logical end result of this is what's happening to Fr Sweeny, condemned for actually mentioning hell(!) in a sermon. In this sense, I envy the evangelicals and fundamentalists for the clarity (if not always the content) of their doctrine. The American Catholic church could learn a great deal from this example.
Now, please tell me what exactly a "primitive" Protestant is. Is this the same as the "Primitive Baptist Church" signs I see by the roadside?
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If this parish were anywhere in my diocese, I would attend it.
My own parish has the only Perpetual Adoration chapel in my diocese (well, its not exactly Perpetual...my pastor says our own bishop frowns upon perpetual adoration. If we had 24/7 adoration, canonically we'd have to have the bishop's approval. My pastor's solution? "We just won't do it on Sunday. That way its not "perpetual" so we won't have to ask...")
God Bless Msgr. Sweeney. I pray the exposure this WSJ article gets will put pressure on the good bishop to do the right thing.
Let me tell you this place is special. Just as the story says, there is perpetual adoration and has been for something like 30 years. There are priests in the confessional before every mass, and lines to get in too. There is a communion rail where an actual priest gives you communion with an alter boy holding a plate to prevent any chance of the body of our Lord falling to the floor. What I did not see mentioned in the article is that the 7:30 PM Saturday masses are in Latin, traditional on the first Saturday of the month and Novus Ordo on the other Saturdays.
I do find the steel statues of Our Lady a bit on the gaudy side. There are actually two statues, a large one visible from the highway and a smaller copy in a courtyard next to the church. People are always at the shrine praying and saying rosaries. The statue in the courtyard is always surrounded by fresh flowers.
Every mass I have been to has been well attended. Even with no obligation, the parking lot will be filled for weekday evening mass.
The parish is a leader in the pro-life movement in the area. Routinely the evil of abortion is condemned from the pulpit and we are reminded of our responsibility to fight against abortion. We are invited to join regular protests lead by the priests at abortion clinics.
A couple months ago I began attending the young adult group meetings with a lively group of orthodox young Catholics. While I have never heard an ill word spoken of the bishop, only prayers for his health and God granted wisdom, I still sense much trepidation about what will happen when Monsignor Sweeney retires and who will be sent to replace him. If someone is appointed who does not cherish all of the wonderful traditions that makes OLOP the special place that it is I will be heart broken.
And you say that Vatican II was a mistake!!! This in itself shows the American idea of "rugged individualism" seeping in. Just who are we to say that the Holy Spirit can make a mistake when He leads the teachers of the Church - the Bishops, not the theologians - to call a council? One of those documents produced at Vatican II was called Dei Verbum and it states in Atricle 8, "Thus God who spoke in the past, continues to converse with the spouse of His Beloved Son. And the Holy Spirit, through whom the living voice of the Gospel rings out in the Church - and through her in the world - leads believers to the full truth, and makes the Word of Christ dwell in them in all its richness."
While we may prefer a different type of liturgy than the modern one celebrated in most American parishes, there still exist provision for those who prefer the Tridentine or Novus Ordo Masses. If you believe that error came out of the documents of Vatican II, then you do not believe in the dogma of the infallibility of the Church. The Church has NEVER taught that one can enter heaven other than through Jesus Christ for this would be against what Jesus Himself says, "I am the way and the truth and the life" and "No one can come to the Father except through me." Most Catholics I have spoken with who have a problem with Vatican II have never actually read the documents. I must add that this includes those pastors and priests who then went on to commit the most horrible "modernizations" and doing so, they claimed, "in the spirit of Vatican II." I have seen some craziness myself but I prefer to hear the beautiful eucharistic prayer in my native tongue.
Msgr. Sweeny seems like a treasure of a priest but I think he might disagree that Vatican II was a mistake. If he is being persecuted (which it sounds like he is) then he knows that this is one of the greatest joys of the Christian - to suffer for our faith in Christ. I am sure that he does so with joy in his heart while still retaining his love for his nay-sayers. If he is true to this calling of Christ's - to take up his cross and follow Him daily - then we should rejoice with him as St. Paul did for having been found worthy to suffer for the sake of Christ.
IMO, we need more priests like this, telling it like it is. I have never, in my 26 years, ever heard a priest remind the congregation that missing a single Mass can send an individual to Hell for eternity. And with the changes in the reception of Christ, we have basically lost our outward show of respect and recognition that the Eucharist is indeed Christ -- and this has led to an increased sentiment of doubt among parishioners that the wafer is indeed Christ, body blood, soul and divinity.
It's no surprise that the vast majority of Catholic fervent faith is to be found in Church's that offer Tridentine rite masses, and also in seminaries that produce Latin rite priests. When you water down truth, people get watered down as well -- and unfortunately, although it isn't the fault of Vat II, it's the fault of those who have used it as a wedge to infect their satanic influence into the Church, it has led to a damaging effect in the Catholic Church.
I went to a liturgy conference last year in which I heard it said that even people who were living outside of sacramental unions (i.e. living together) should be allowed to receive the Eucharist! This conference was sponsored by my diocese. And while I believe 100% that this conference was flawed and fallible, an ecumenical council cannot be because the Holy Spirit will never allow the Church to deceive or be deceived.
This is the sentiment I would agree with, and I suspect it's what Silmaril had intended -- or something along those lines.
I think a lot of modern Catholics tend to use knee-jerk phrases like "inquisition" and "fear of excommunication" to discredit authentic Church teaching (i.e. - "You can't tell people in the pews they're going to hell! That would be insensitive, and in the long term, would end up alienating so many people. We need to encourage people with love and understanding, etc. etc.") But I think we've seen the fruits of this approach -- when priests are wussy and equivocate on morality and theology and the necessity of teh Sacraments for Salvation, then people leave. Because if what you're offering isn't essential, crucial to someone's eternal soul, then what motivation is there to be at Mass? For the donuts? For teh singing? Sorry, Protestants got us beat on both counts there.
Political Correctness is raging in the Church right now especially in my field, which is liturgy. Example...Remember that beautiful old hymn "Where Charity and Love Prevail" (aka Ubi Caritas)? It used to be printed as "...With grateful joy and holy fear, God's charity we learn; Let us with heart and mind and soul Now love Him in return." That last line has been changed to read "Now love God in return." There are feminists within the Church who are trying to say that we can't even use the personal pronouns "him," "his," or "He" to refer to God because that makes the implication that God is male in Gender. DDUUUUUUUUUHHHHHHHHHH!!!! The whole idea of inclusive language delayed the English edition of the Catechism for almost a year and a half because it had to be re-translated to correct all the political correctness.
What did Pope Paul VI call it, "the smoke of satan?" I agree that there is this smoke within the Church but I believe that behind all the smoke and mirrors you'll find the living and true faith handed down to us from the Apostles. This will include the Second Vatican Council.
P.S. Did you know that in those documents it lists, among other things, that the Latin language should be retained in the Latin rite, there should be no women serving at the altar and communion in the hand should be preceded by another type of reverence such as a genuflection? Veils were not thrown out by these documents and neither were communion rails. The question is, How do you get people to return to the traditional ways when those ways have been slowly "vaccinated out" of existence?
I thank God for the traditional masses and the traditional priests like Msgr. Sweeny. I know of several here in Houston, too, so we must never give up hope. The smoke will clear very soon. In this, I have the strongest faith.
First of all, there is no "American Catholic Church."
Hm....the Catholic Church is in America. There is a conference of American bishops. There is a culturally distinct "American" Catholicism. I'm not making an organizational or doctrinal reference; I think you may be reading too much into the phrase.
And you say that Vatican II was a mistake!!!
I can date many of the Church's current problems from Vatican II, yes. The loss of institutional identity; the abandonment of norms; the obscuring of clarity of mission; and all the problems flowing from that, from declining Mass attendance to chronic vocational shortages. You can defend the Council simply on the grounds that the Holy Spirit will not err; but I reply that whatever the Spirit's intentions, the subsequent human application of them has been disastrous.
If you believe that error came out of the documents of Vatican II, then you do not believe in the dogma of the infallibility of the Church.
Hm. I'm no theologian or expert in canon law, but it's my understanding that there is doctrine, and there are rules. Doctrine is the Virgin Birth, Papal Infallibility, et al.; rules are priestly celibacy and nuns' habits. You don't mess with doctrine, but you may civilly disagree with (so long as you do not disobey) rules. The language of the Mass falls into the latter category, as I recall. And I disagree. One language -- Latin -- for every Mass everywhere, as befits a universal Church.
The Church has NEVER taught that one can enter heaven other than through Jesus Christ....
The Church did, I believe, disavow the slogan "No salvation outside the Church." I applaud the Vatican's tentative reaffirmation of this tenet in the past year, but its flustered defensiveness in the face of the resultant criticism was disheartening.
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