Category: What is Catechesis?

Interview With A Faithful Bishop!

MUST READ!!! 

Exclusive Interview With His Excellency Bishop Athanasius Schneider by Rorate_Caeli

Bishop Athanasius Schneider

Please take a couple minutes to read this very instructive and informative interview of His Excellency Bishop Athanasius Schneider by Rorate_Caeli , it clears up many misconceptions and questions that the faithful may have regarding the current state of the Church and the Pope.

POST-SYNOD CHURCH & UNBELIEVERS IN THE HIERARCHY

Rorate Caeli: In the recent Synod, we will not know the legal impact it will have on the Church for some time, as it’s up to Pope Francis to move next. Regardless of the eventual outcome, for all intent and purposes, is there already a schism in the Church? And, if so, what does it mean practically speaking? How will it manifest itself for typical Catholics in the pews?

H.E. Schneider: Schism means according to the definition of the Code of Canon Law, can. 751: The refusal of submission to the Supreme Pontiff or of communion with those members of the Church who are submitted to the Supreme Pontiff. One has to distinguish the defect in belief or heresy from schism. The defect in belief or heresy is indeed a greater sin than schism, as Saint Thomas Aquinas said: “Unbelief is a sin committed against God Himself, according as He is Himself the First Truth, on which faith is founded; whereas schism is opposed to ecclesiastical unity, which is a lesser good than God Himself. Wherefore the sin of unbelief is generically more grievous than the sin of schism” (II-II, q. 39, a. 2 c).  The very crisis of the Church in our days consists in the ever growing phenomenon that those who don’t fully believe and profess the integrity of the Catholic faith frequently occupy strategic positions in the life of the Church, such as professors of theology, educators in seminaries, religious superiors, parish priests and even bishops and cardinals. And these people with their defective faith profess themselves as being submitted to the Pope.  The height of confusion and absurdity manifests itself when such semi-heretical clerics accuse those who defend the purity and integrity of the Catholic faith as being against the Pope – as being according to their opinion in some way schismatics. For simple Catholics in the pews, such a situation of confusion is a real challenge of their faith, in the indestructibility of the Church. They have to keep strong the integrity of their faith according to the immutable Catholic truths, which were handed over by our fore-fathers, and which we find in in the Traditional catechisms and in the works of the Fathers and of the Doctors of the Church.
Rorate Caeli: Speaking of typical Catholics, what will the typical parish priest face now that he didn’t face before the Synod began? What pressures, such as the washing of women’s feet on Maundy Thursday after the example of Francis, will burden the parish priest even more than he is burdened today?

H.E. Schneider: A typical Catholic parish priest should know well the perennial sense of the Catholic faith, the perennial sense as well of the laws of the Catholic liturgy and, knowing this, he should have an interior sureness and firmness. He should always remember the Catholic principle of discernment: “Quod semper, quod ubique, quod ab omnibus”, i.e. “What has been always, everywhere and from all” believed and practiced.  The categories “always, everywhere, all” are not to be understood in an arithmetical, but in a moral sense. A concrete criterion for discernment is this: “Does this change in a doctrinal affirmation, in a pastoral or in a liturgical practice constitute a rupture with the centuries-old, or even with the millennial past? And does this innovation really make the faith shine clearer and brighter? Does this liturgical innovation bring to us closer the sanctity of God, or manifest deeper and more beautiful the Divine mysteries? Does this disciplinary innovation really increase a greater zeal for the holiness of life?”  As concretely to the innovation of washing the feet of women during the Holy Mass of the Last Supper on Holy Thursday: This Holy Mass celebrates the commemoration of the institution of the sacraments of the Eucharist and the Priesthood. Therefore, the foot washing of women along with the men not only distracts from the main focus on Eucharist and on Priesthood, but generates confusion regarding the historical symbolism of the “twelve” and of the apostles being of male sex. The universal tradition of the Church never allowed the foot washing during the Holy Mass, but instead outside of Mass, in a special ceremony.  By the way: the public washing and usually also kissing of the feet of women on the part of a man, in our case, of a priest or a bishop, is considered by every person of common sense in all cultures as being improper and even indecent. Thanks be to God no priest or bishop is obliged to wash publicly the feet of women on Holy Thursday, for there is no binding norm for it, and the foot washing itself is only facultative.

PRIESTLY FRATERNITY OF ST. PIUS X (SSPX)

Rorate Caeli: A non-typical situation in the church is the Priestly Society of St. Pius X (SSPX). Why does Your Excellency think that so many Catholics are afraid of the SSPX or anxious about any association with it? From what Your Excellency has seen, what gifts do you think the SSPX can bring to the mainstream Church?

H.E. Schneider: When someone or something is unimportant and weak, nobody has fear of it. Those who have fear of the Priestly Society of St. Pius X ultimately have fear of the perennial Catholic truths and of its demands in the moral and the liturgical domain.  When the SSPX tries to believe, to worship and to live morally the way our fore-fathers and the best-known Saints did during a millennial period, then one has to consider the life and the work of these Catholic priests and faithful of the SSPX as a gift for the Church in our days – even as one of the several instruments which the Divine Providence uses to remedy the enormity of the current general crisis of the faith, of the morals and of the liturgy inside the Church.  In some sectors of the SSPX there are, however, as it is the case in every human society some eccentric personalities. They have a method and a mindset which lack justice and charity and consequently the true “sentire cum ecclesia,” and there is the danger of an ecclesial autocephaly and to be the last judicial instance in the Church. However, to my knowledge, the healthier part corresponds to the major part of the SSPX and I consider their General Superior, His Excellency Monsignor Bernard Fellay, as an exemplarily and true Catholic bishop. There is some hope for a canonical recognition of the SPPX.

THE SYNOD AND PAPALOTRY 

Rorate Caeli: Back on the Synod, while focusing on tradition, does Your Excellency believe that the changes in the Roman liturgy post-Vatican II contributed to the current crisis in the Church, the crisis of marriage, the family and societal morality in general??

H.E. Schneider:  I wouldn’t affirm this in such a way. Indeed the very source of the current crisis in the Church, the crisis of marriage, of the family and of the morality in general is not the liturgical reform, but the defects in faith, the doctrinal relativism, from which flows the moral and liturgical relativism. For, if I believe in a defective manner, I will live a defective moral life and I will worship in a defective, indifferent manner. It is necessary first to restore the clearness and firmness of the doctrine of faith and of morals in all levels and, from there, start to improve the liturgy. The integrity and the beauty of the faith demands the integrity and the beauty of one’s moral life and this demands the integrity and the beauty of the public worship.

Rorate Caeli: Still on the Synod, it is clear to those with eyes to see that Pope Francis caused confusion instead of clarity in the Synod process, and encouraged a turn toward rupture by elevating the role of Cardinals Kaspar and Danneels, Archbishop Cupich, etc. What is the proper attitude a Catholic should have towards the pope in these troubled times? Are Catholics obliged to make their views known and “resist” as Cardinal Burke said in an interview last year with us, even when their views are critical of the pope?

H.E. Schneider: For several past generations until our days there reigns in the life of the Church a kind of “pope-centrism” or a kind of “papolatria” which is undoubtedly excessive compared with the moderate and supernatural vision of the person of the Pope and his due veneration in the past times. Such an excessive attitude towards the person of the Pope generates in the practice an excessive and wrong theological meaning regarding the dogma of the Papal infallibility.  If the Pope would tell the entire church to do something, which would directly damage an unchangeable Divine truth or a Divine commandment, every Catholic would have the right to correct him in a due respectful form, moved out of reverence and love for the sacred office, and person of the Pope. The Church is not the private property of the Pope. The Pope can’t say “I am the Church,” as it did the French king Louis XIV, who said: “L’État c’est moi.” The Pope is only the Vicar, not the successor of Christ. The concerns about the purity of the faith is ultimately a matter of all members of the Church, which is one, and a unique living body. In the ancient times before entrusting to someone the office of a priest and of a bishop, the faithful were asked if they can guarantee that the candidate had the right faith, and a high moral conduct. The old Pontificale Romanum says: “The captain of a ship and its passengers alike have reason to feel safe or else in danger on a voyage, therefore they ought to be of one mind in their common interests.” It was the Second Vatican Council, which very much encouraged the lay faithful to contribute to the authentic good of the Church, in strengthening the faith.  I think in a time in which a great part of the holders of the office of the Magisterium are negligent in their sacred duty, the Holy Spirit calls today, namely the faithful, to step into the breach and defend courageously with an authentic “sentire cum ecclesia” the Catholic faith.

TRADITION AND ITS ENEMIES FROM WITHIN

Rorate Caeli: Is the pope the measure of tradition, or is he measured by tradition? And should faithful Catholics pray for a traditional pope to arrive soon?

H.E. Schneider: The Pope is surely not the measure of tradition, but on the contrary. We must always bear in mind the following dogmatic teaching of the First Vatican Council: The office of the successors of Peter does not consist in making known some new doctrine, but in guarding and faithfully expounding the deposit of faith transmitted by the apostles (cf. Constitutio dogmatica Pastor aeternus, cap. 4).  In fulfilling one of his most important tasks, the Pope has to strive so that “the whole flock of Christ might be kept away from the poisonous food of error” (First Vatican Council, ibd.).  The following expression which was in use since the first centuries of the Church, is one of the most striking definitions of the Papal office, and has to be in some sense a second nature of every Pope: “Faithfully adhering to the tradition received from the beginning of the Christian faith” (First Vatican Council, ibd.).  We must always pray that God provides His Church with traditional-minded Popes. However, we have to believe in these words: “It is not for you to have knowledge of the time and the order of events which the Father has kept in his control” (Acts 1: 7).

Rorate Caeli:  We know there are many bishops and cardinals – possibly the majority – who want to change the Church’s doctrinal language and long-standing discipline, under the excuses of “development of doctrine” and “pastoral compassion.” What is wrong with their argument?

H.E. Schneider: Expressions like “development of doctrine” and “pastoral compassion” are in fact usually a pretext to change the teaching of Christ, and against its perennial sense and integrity, as the Apostles had transmitted it to the whole Church, and it was faithfully preserved through the Fathers of the Church, the dogmatic teachings of the Ecumenical Councils and of the Popes.  Ultimately, those clerics want another Church, and even another religion: A naturalistic religion, which is adapted to the spirit of the time. Such clerics are really wolves in sheep’s clothing, often flirting with the world. Not courageous shepherds – but rather cowardly rabbits.    

ROLE OF WOMEN IN THE CHURCH

Rorate Caeli: We hear a lot about the role of women in the Church today – the so-called “feminine genius.” Women obviously have played a critical role in the Church since the beginning, starting with the Blessed Virgin Mary. But liturgically, Christ made His position crystal clear, as have pre-Conciliar popes. Does Your Excellency believe that female involvement in the liturgy, whether it’s women taking part in the Novus Ordo Mass or girl altar boys, has played a positive or negative role in the Church the last four decades?

H.E. Schneider: There is no doubt about the fact that the female involvement in the liturgical services at the altar (reading the lecture, serving at the altar, distributing Holy Communion) represents a radical rupture with the entire and universal tradition of the Church. Therefore, such a practice is against the Apostolic tradition.  Such a practice gave to the liturgy of the Holy Mass a clear Protestant shape and a characteristic of an informal prayer meeting or of a catechetical event. This practice is surely contrary to the intentions of the Fathers of the Second Vatican Council and there is not in the least an indication for it in the Constitution on Sacred Liturgy.

THE TRADITIONAL LATIN MASS

Rorate Caeli: Your Excellency is well known for celebrating the traditional Latin Mass in many places around the world. What does Your Excellency find to be the deepest lessons learned from saying the Latin Mass, as a priest and as a bishop, that other priests and bishops may hope to gain by saying the traditional Mass themselves?

H.E. Schneider: The deepest lessons I learned from celebrating the traditional form of the Mass is this: I am only a poor instrument of a supernatural and utmost sacred action, whose principal celebrant is Christ, the Eternal High Priest. I feel that during the celebration of the Mass I lost in some sense my individual freedom, for the words and the gesture are prescribed even in their smallest details, and I am not able to dispose of them. I feel most deeply in my heart that I am only a servant and a minister who yet with free will, with faith and love, fulfill not my will, but the will of Another.  The traditional and more than millennial-old rite of the Holy Mass, which not even the Council of Trent changed, because the Ordo Missae before and after that Council was almost identical, proclaims and powerfully evangelizes the Incarnation and the Epiphany of the ineffably saintly and immense God, who in the liturgy as “God with us,” as “Emmanuel,” becomes so little and so close to us. The traditional rite of the Mass is a highly artfully and, at the same time, a powerful proclamation of the Gospel, realizing the work of our salvation.

Rorate Caeli: If Pope Benedict is correct in saying that the Roman Rite currently (if strangely) exists in two forms rather than one, why has it not yet happened that all seminarians are required to study and learn the traditional Latin Mass, as part of their seminary training? How can a parish priest of the Roman Church not know both forms of the one rite of his Church? And how can so many Catholics still be denied the traditional Mass and sacraments if it is an equal form?

H.E. Schneider: According to the intention of Pope Benedict XVI, and the clear norms of the Instruction “Universae Ecclesiae,” all Catholic seminarians have to know the traditional form of the Mass and be able to celebrate it. The same document says that this form of Mass is a treasure for the entire Church – thus it is for all of the faithful.  Pope John Paul II made an urgent appeal to all bishops to accommodate generously the wish of the faithful regarding the celebration of the traditional form of the Mass. When clerics and bishops obstruct or restrict the celebration of the traditional Mass, they don’t obey what the Holy Spirit says to the Church, and they are acting in a very anti-pastoral way. They behave as the possessors of the treasure of the liturgy, which does not belong to them, for they are only administrators. In denying the celebration of the traditional Mass or in obstructing and discriminating against it, they behave like an unfaithful and capricious administrator who – contrary to the instructions of the house-father – keeps the pantry under lock or like a wicked stepmother who gives the children a meager fare. Perhaps such clerics have fear of the great power of the truth irradiating from the celebration of the traditional Mass. One can compare the traditional Mass with a lion: Let him free, and he will defend himself.

RUSSIA NOT YET EXPLICITLY CONSECRATED

Rorate Caeli: There are many Russian Orthodox where Your Excellency lives. Has Alexander of Astana or anyone else in the Moscow Patriarchate asked Your Excellency about the recent Synod or about what is happening to the Church under Francis? Do they even care at this point?

H.E. Schneider: Those Orthodox Prelates, with whom I have contact, generally are not well informed about the internal current disputes in the Catholic Church, or at least they had never spoken with me about such issues. Even though they don’t recognize the jurisdictional primacy of the Pope, they nevertheless look on the Pope as the first hierarchical office in the Church, from a point of view of the order of protocol.

Rorate Caeli: We are just a year away from the 100th anniversary of Fatima. Russia was arguably not consecrated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and certainly not converted. The Church, while ever spotless, is in complete disarray – maybe worse than during the Arian Heresy. Will things get even worse before they get better and how should truly faithful Catholics prepare for what is coming?

H.E. Schneider: We have to believe firmly: The Church is not ours, nor the Pope’s. The Church is Christ’s and He alone holds and leads her indefectibly even through the darkest periods of crisis, as our current situation indeed is.  This is a demonstration of the Divine character of the Church. The Church is essentially a mystery, a supernatural mystery, and we cannot approach her as we approach a political party or a pure human society. At the same time, the Church is human and on her human level she is nowadays enduring a sorrowful passion, participating in the Passion of Christ.  One can think that the Church in our days is being flagellated as our Lord, is being denuded as was Our Lord, on the tenth Cross station. The Church, our mother, is being bound in cords not only by the enemies of Christ but also by some of their collaborators in the rank of the clergy, even sometimes of the high clergy. All good children of Mother Church as courageous soldiers we have to try to free this mother – with the spiritual weapons of defending and proclaiming the truth, promoting the traditional liturgy, Eucharistic adoration, the crusade of the Holy Rosary, the battle against the sin in one’s private life and striving for holiness.  We have to pray that the Pope may soon consecrate explicitly Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, then She will win, as the Church prayed since the old times: “Rejoice O Virgin Mary, for thou alone have destroyed all heresies in the whole world” (Gaude, Maria Virgo, cunctas haereses sola interemisti in universo mundo).

What do the Saints say About Islam?

What do the Saints say About Islam?

Gozzoli_TheGloryOfSt_ThomasAquainas

St Thomas Aquinas

What do the Saints say About Islam?

  So, what do the Saints actually say about Islam?  I can tell you that it largely contradicts what many leaders in the church say today, and that is very unfortunate. I don’t know if many of our leaders are flat out being dishonest about Islam, or maybe they just don’t have a clue. Whatever the reason, we NEED to know what the Saints and Holy Scripture say about false doctrines. The time for political correctness is over, lives and souls are being snatched away by the evil spirit. The Truth needs to be preached from the rooftops and we have to confront and name evil when it rears its ugly head. Islam is evil!

You might be wondering if I have read the entire Koran, and the answer is no I have not read ALL of it, but I have read more than enough to be able to say that mohomet was a murderer, a rapist, and a pedophile. I also know enough about mohomet’s teachings (hadith) to be able to say with confidence that ISIS are faithful practicing “religious” muslims. ISIS are following the teachings of mohomet very faithfully. It would be great if we had more Catholics faithfully following Christ the way many of mohomet’s “little helpers” follow mohomet! Enough about him, let’s take a look at what the Saints say. Oh, one more thing, don’t EVER BELIEVE THE LIE THAT ISLAM is a RELIGION of PEACE, EVER! Muslims are ENCOURAGED to lie in order to make events sway in their direction ; the practice is called taqiya!

I’m just going to be basically cutting and pasting what the Saints have said, so please read and share with others, and don’t be a sucker for believing ANYONE who tells you differently.

St Paul on false doctrines:

Galatians Chapter 1: [8]  “But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach a gospel to you besides that which we have preached to you, let him be anathema. [9] As we said before, so now I say again: If any one preach to you a gospel, besides that which you have received, let him be anathema.”   Let him be anathema, that is cut-off!      This is DIVINE REVELATION not human opinion!   Why do so many of our Church leaders not believe God? Do they know better than GOD?  

Who is like unto God?  Remember?  Hmmmm

Maybe we should pay attention to God’s Word!

St. Thomas Aquinas on Islam:

“He (Mohammed) seduced the people by promises of carnal pleasure to which the concupiscence of the flesh urges us. His teaching also contained precepts that were in conformity with his promises, and he gave free rein to carnal pleasure. In all this, as is not unexpected; he was obeyed by carnal men. As for proofs of the truth of his doctrine, he brought forward only such as could be grasped by the natural ability of anyone with a very modest wisdom. Indeed, the truths that he taught he mingled with many fables and with doctrines of the greatest falsity.

He did not bring forth any signs produced in a supernatural way, which alone fittingly gives witness to divine inspiration; for a visible action that can be only divine reveals an invisibly inspired teacher of truth. On the Contrary, Mohammed said that he was sent in the power of his arms – which are signs not lacking even to robbers and tyrants. What is more, no wise men, men trained in things divine and human, believed in him from the beginning (1). Those who believed in him were brutal men and desert wanderers, utterly ignorant of all divine teaching, through whose numbers Mohammed forced others to become his follower’s by the violence of his arms. Nor do divine pronouncements on part of preceding prophets offer him any witness. On the contrary, he perverts almost all the testimony of the Old and the New Testaments by making them into a fabrication of his own, as can be seen by anyone who examines his law. It was, therefore, a shrewd decision on his part to forbid his followers to read the Old and New Testaments, lest these books convict him of falsity. It is thus clear that those who place faith in his words believe foolishly.”– Summa Contra Gentiles, Book 1, Chapter 16, Art. 4. Footnote: 1. Sura 21:5, Sura 44:14; Sura 16:103, Sura 37:36

 

St. Alfonsus Liguori (d. 1787). Quoted from his book, The History of Heresies and their Refutation:

The Mahometan paradise, however, is only fit for beasts; for filthy sensual pleasure is all the believer has to expect there.”

St John Damascene:

On Women According to Mohomet:

“As has been related, this Mohammed wrote many ridiculous books, to each one of which he set a title. For example, there is the book On Woman, in which he plainly makes legal provision for taking four wives and, if it be possible, a thousand concubines—as many as one can maintain, besides the four wives. He also made it legal to put away whichever wife one might wish, and, should one so wish, to take to oneself another in the same way. Mohammed had a friend named Zeid. This man had a beautiful wife with whom Mohammed fell in love. Once, when they were sitting together, Mohammed said: ‘Oh, by the way, God has commanded me to take your wife.’ The other answered: ‘You are an apostle. Do as God has told you and take my wife.’

Mohomet made up his own heresy:

“There is also the superstition of the Ishmaelites which to this day prevails and keeps people in error, being a forerunner of the Antichrist. They are descended from Ishmael, [who] was born to Abraham of Agar, and for this reason they are called both Agarenes and Ishmaelites… From that time to the present a false prophet named Mohammed has appeared in their midst. This man, after having chanced upon the Old and New Testaments and likewise, it seems, having conversed with an Arian monk, devised his own heresy. Then, having insinuated himself into the good graces of the people by a show of seeming piety, he gave out that a certain book had been sent down to him from heaven. He had set down some ridiculous compositions in this book of his and he gave it to them as an object of veneration.”

 

Here are a Couple of Pope’s on Islam:

Pope Leo X – “.. the Turks and other infidels …They treat the way of true light and salvation with complete contempt and totally unyielding blindness ..”

Pope Clement VCouncil of Vienne, 1311-1312: “It is an insult to the holy name and a disgrace to the christian faith that in certain parts of the world subject to christian princes where Saracens live, sometimes apart, sometimes intermingled with Christians, the Saracen priests commonly called Zabazala, in their temples or mosques, in which the Saracens meet to adore the infidel Mahomet, loudly invoke and extol his name each day at certain hours from a high place, in the hearing of both Christians and Saracens and there make public declarations in his honour. There is a place, moreover, where once was buried a certain Saracen whom other Saracens venerate as a saint. A great number of Saracens flock there quite openly from far and near. This brings disrepute on our faith and gives great scandal to the faithful. These practices cannot be tolerated any further without displeasing the divine majesty.  We therefore, with the sacred council’s approval, strictly forbid such practices henceforth in christian lands. We enjoin on catholic princes, one and all, who hold sovereignty over the said Saracens and in whose territory these practices occur, and we lay on them a pressing obligation under the divine judgment that, as true Catholics and zealous for the christian faith, they give consideration to the disgrace heaped on both them and other Christians. They are to remove this offence altogether from their territories and take care that their subjects remove it, so that they may thereby attain the reward of eternal happiness. They are to forbid expressly the public invocation of the sacrilegious name of Mahomet. They shall also forbid anyone in their dominions to attempt in future the said pilgrimage or in any way give countenance to it. Those who presume to act otherwise are to be so chastised by the princes for their irreverence, that others may be deterred from such boldness.   http://www.papalencyclicals.net/Councils/ecum15.htm

An entire book could easily be written about all the Saints and Popes that condemned Islam and its false demonic doctrine.

My mission on Canadian Catechist is to teach the Catholic faith, but at times like these I will take the liberty to instruct on areas that need attention. This is DEFINITELY one of those times. You might think that I am mean and not politically correct. Politically correct, no I am not. Mean, well, I’ll be a little bit mean if it does ANYTHING to help save your soul from ETERNAL damnation. Yes, I care more about a person’s soul than their feelings, eventhough I do care about your feelings. I hope that makes sense.

May Almighty God protect you from the World, the devil, ourselves, and the heretics!

In  JM+JT,

Lee

 

What is Catechesis ?

What is Catechesis?

Catechism

 Is Catechesis important?

     A couple of  questions have been asked already and I haven’t even begun this post. The answers to these questions may be obvious to some, but for others they are very important ; especially if you claim the name “Catholic” or are just interested in the Church at all. It is so important to know what it is to be Catholic and what we as Catholics actually  believe. The best way to learn is through what we call  “catechesis“. The word “ catechesis ” actually means to impart knowledge, or to teach by imparting knowledge. The traditional way of imparting knowledge is through a question and answer format, originally done through word of mouth by first Christ and than the Apostles. As the Apostle to the Gentiles St Paul said to the Romans in the 10 th Chapter of his Epistle “[17] Faith then cometh by hearing; and hearing by the word of Christ.” 

  Now, for those who may not know, we as Catholics did not just make-up catechesis and catechisms. In fact, catechesis takes its roots from Judaism. The Hebrews taught catechesis in the home where the father would primarily teach the Jewish religion to his children. The Hebrews also taught religion in school. Thirdly, the Hebrews would learn about their faith in the synagogues and the Temple by the priests and Levites and rabbi’s. Now, does any of this sound familiar? We still have a similar system today ; however, we need to look at the order again. Where we as Catholics are failing, yes I said failing, is in teaching or  catechizing our children in the home ; especially the fathers! It is vitally important for parents to be THE PRIMARY EDUCATORS of CATHOLIC EDUCATION to their children. As the child grows, so do the lessons on catechesis. A child’s understanding of their faith must grow in keeping with their secular education. Otherwise the faith, as we have all seen from the emptying Churches, will certainly be abandoned as a remnant of their childhood.

   Where do we find the teachings of the Church? I thought you would never ask… Here on this website is a good beginning, but I would suggest that every family own at least one good Church approved Catechism. My favourite Catechism is The Catechism of the Council of Trent . It is easy to read and very straight forward, and it leaves no room for ambiguity or confusion. Some catechisms do lead to confusion, so stick with the good ones, I will list a few here.Please don’t just go and buy any book that says catechism on it, some of them are just downright terrible. Any books at the Marian Catechist store are very good especially if authored by our founder, Servant of God Father John Hardon. He actually has a question and answer Catholic Catechism that is excellent to start with, and can be kept in your pocket or lunch box to be read on breaks or lunch… wink, wink! Apologetics and Catholic Doctrine by Archbishop Michael Sheehan is also an excellent Catechism and gets into more intermediate Catechesis. It is a great read and re-read, mine is highlighted from front to back! The one that my wife reads, but I would also highly recommend, especially for those that aren’t big on reading is My Catholic Faith . This is especially good to use with children and converts to the religion, it is a wonderful Catechism. Of course, last but not least is the official Catechism of the Catholic Church . It can also be found online at the Vatican website here  http://www.vatican.va/archive/ENG0015/_INDEX.HTM. Some of these books are not available on the Branches website yet, but we do have them at the store, so please come in and take a look!!!

    Why is Catechesis so important in these times? Once again, glad you asked. Because the younger generation hasn’t been properly catechized at home first, at school second , or at Church in many instances. The flock has scattered, and is leaving or has left the Church en-masse! That being said their are still small faithful pockets where Catechesis thrives, but we need much more of that. That is where the lay catechist comes in, like you and I. I can’t and I won’t get into exactly how things went very wrong in many places throughout the world, especially here in Canada and catechesis changed from God centred to self centered, but somewhere that shift did indeed happen. Now, we must focus on the solution ; what we need to do together is get back down to the Truth of Jesus Christ and His One Holy Catholic Apostolic Church!!! As our International director at the Marian Catechist Apostolate His Eminence  Cardinal Raymond Burke says, “ catechesis is a school of faith that is a deepening of Christian life in all its aspects: knowledge , prayer and worship, and witness.”  Cardinal Burke  also states , ” the object of catechesis, communion with our Lord Jesus Christ, and, therefore to present the Catholic faith in it entirety, especially the entire truth of the mystery of Christ.”  Did the Cardinal say the entire truth? I think he did say the entire truth! I couldn’t have stated it better myself. We need the Truth and the whole uncorrupted Truth, not just the teachings on heaven. The World needs the Truth, it is starving for the Truth. The world thinks that Oprah Winfrey is a spiritual teacher, come on people! People are seeking for the truth in all the wrong places, we have it right here in the Catholic Church. We need to share the Truth with others and be that arrow or sign pointing to Jesus Christ and His One Holy Catholic Apostolic Church!!!

      ….. So please, parents and fathers of young children, it is never to early to start catechizing your children. Secondly, for those of you who are teachers, it is vitally important when teaching the Catholic Faith to children or students of any age , that your teaching is sound and faithful. Thirdly I will address the Pastors……… please know your faith inside and out, all of it, so that you can properly hand it on to the next generation of future catechists and maybe a future parent, priest, bishop or who knows, maybe oneday we will have a Pope from Canada :-).

   If you have any questions about the Church and Her teachings on Holy Scripture and Holy Tradition, please leave a comment or send me an email. One more thing, don’t forget to subscribe to www.canadiancatechist.com  .

  What Jesus teaches us in the 5th Chapter of St Matthew is the Truth. Here is some great Catechesis from the Master Catechist Himself. Here are a few verses that I hope will  inspire you like they do to me. So get out there and share your faith with the world ! “[13] You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt lose its savour, wherewith shall it be salted? It is good for nothing any more but to be cast out, and to be trodden on by men. [14] You are the light of the world. A city seated on a mountain cannot be hid. [15] Neither do men light a candle and put it under a bushel, but upon a candlestick, that it may shine to all that are in the house.

[16] So let your light shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven”

May God Bless us and protect us from the world , the devil and ourselves,

In JM+JT,

Lee