Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Invitatory Fitting for Today's Church

Israel wandered in the wilderness for 40 years because of their "stubborness." Is the post-Vatican II Church in a similar siutation?

In praying the liturgy of the hours this morning, I was struck by the appropriateness of the Invitatory Psalm (Psalm 95) to the contemporary Church since the 1960's. Listen to this:

Today, listen to the voice of the Lord
Do not grow stubborn, as your fathers did in the wilderness,
When at Meriba and Massah
They challenged Me and provoked Me,
Although they had seen all of My works.

Forty years I endured that generation.
I said, "They are a people whose hearts go astray
And they do not know My ways."
So I swore in My anger,
"They shall not enter into My rest."

Is this not an appropriate description of the post-Vatican II Church? God here warns us not to be stubborn "as your fathers did." Now, stubborness, in the Bible, always implies one who is determined to go their own way, despite what God has commanded. Classic biblical examples of stubborness are Pharoah "hardening" his heart against Moses and Saul hardening his heart against David and God. Could it not be said that the Modernists in the Church have "hardened their heart" against God and grown stubborn in preferring their own novel theological speculations and liturgical creativity to the Traditions of the Faith?

God describes these stubborn persons as "challenging" Him and "provoking" Him, although they had seen all His works. What was one of these provocations the congregation of Israel committed against the Lord? One of them was the rebellion of Korah (Num. 16:1-40), in which Korah asserted that the "whole congregation was holy" and had a right to participate in the priestly office. Korah and his followers were consumed by divine fire. Is this not the same provocation against God that happens everytime the laity is clericalized or the special role of the priest is downplayed?

The final verse is especially applicable: "Forty years I endured that generation. I said, 'They are a people whose hearts go astray and they do not know My ways.'" Forty years! A biblical generation. And how long have we been in this quagmire? About 40 years! In fact, if you start from 1969 (when the Novus Ordo was promulgated), then 40 years will be up in November 0f 2009. Perhaps by then, with the passing of this "wicked and adulterous generation", will we be out of our present mess? Reason says no, but Christian hope (which is hope against hope) must stand firm.

The one thing we can be happy about is that this decrepit generation, these children of the 60's, our "fathers," will not be with us forever. We know how the generation that came with Moses out of Egypt ended up. As St. Paul says, "Was it not those who sinned, whose corpses fell in the wilderness?" (2 Cor. 6:1-2) A generation can be as stubborn or as wicked as they like; but we know this from God Himself, that "they shall not enter into My rest." Let's get rid once and for all of this heresy of Modernism, this "synthesis of all heresies" so we can finally "enter into His rest."


Anonymous said...

40 years.... yep wandering in a dessert of ambiguity.

Thank God for Benedict. All the world is in some kind of conflict. All the world has seen war..... except for Portugal because of Fatima.

Gee... coincidence? The Pope at the time of Fatima was also Benedict... the XV.

Anonymous said...


Is there anywhere on your site or other pictures you can send me that have pictures of the arc of the covenant cherubim that show them from the front and the back as "every picture I can find only shows them from the sides. Any help in finding pictures like this would be greatly appreciated.

Boniface said...


All renderings are ultimately speculative, but I found two that show a frontal view kind of: