General Discussion (8)

General Discussion (8)

If there’s something of interest in the news that’s not covered in one of the topic threads, or you have a question to ask, a comment you’d like to  GeneralDiscussion3peoplemake about anything under the sun, more or less, this is the thread for you. However, please check first, to ensure that you haven’t missed a topic thread or another thread where it would be appropriate to post your comment.  Readers have occasionally gone straight to the General Discussion thread to post news that is already the topic of a thread or to ask a question that is already being discussed elsewhere. So, do your Sherlock Holmes before posting here, please and thank you!

Feel free, also, to share your favourite spiritual reading books, prayers and devotions. Whatever.


To read General Discussion Thread (1) click here (2) click here (3) click here
(4) click here (5) click here (6) click here (7) click here

Comments (514)

  • westminsterfly

    Please may I ask your prayers for a man I know called Linas Sanchez. I have corresponded with him for years (he isn’t online). He has been diagnosed with liver cancer and has written and said “I am not praying for a cure, but that I will be completely given the grace to surrender to the perfect, holy will of the Father”. He has asked for prayers for this intention. Thank you.

    August 20, 2015 at 9:23 am
    • Therese


      I will pray for Linas. God bless him.

      August 22, 2015 at 8:59 pm
    • Athanasius


      I will pray for this good soul also.

      August 22, 2015 at 9:06 pm
  • perplexed

    I’m placing this lengthy quote from a book I have been reading and I am truly puzzled and somewhat upset. I seek your guidance and illumination: is there any foundation to what this author says?

    “The other important matter with which Pius V was concerned was the implementation of the decrees of the Council of Trent. One of his principal actions in this regard was to authorize the official form of the ‘Tridentine Mass’ (sometimes, though misleadingly, referred to as the ‘Latin Mass’). Primarily as a rejection of various new Protestant ideas as to how the central act of Christian worship should be observed, the Council decreed that the form of the Eucharist, as it has developed in medieval times, should henceforth be normative. Thus enshrined for 400 years was a form of the Catholic Eucharist, or Mass as it had come to be called, which many modern ‘traditionalist’ Catholics consider to be a time-honored and venerable expression of Catholic antiquity and even apostolic integrity. By a similar token, they consider the Mass that replaced the Tridentine version, by order of Pope Paul VI in 1969, to have been something entirely new and in conflict with traditional Catholic theology and liturgy.
    Nothing could be further from the truth. The so-called ‘new’ Mass is in fact based, in modern form, on the Eucharist as celebrated by the Christians of the earliest centuries. Called ‘The Breaking of Bread’ or ‘Lord’s Supper, it began to disappear in the early Middle Ages. The Mass became more and more the preserve of the clergy, to serve the principles of priesthood (or ‘priestcraft as the enemies of such a form of religion call it). The people became increasingly separated from the action of the Mass, as reflected in the architecture of medieval churches.
    Modern ‘traditionalists – at least those of the more extreme kind – eschew many of the recent liturgical reforms. They tend, for example, to sit staring po-facedly ahead of them when the congregation is exhorted to exchange a sign of peace. Little do they realize that there is no older practice in the whole of Christian history. The first Christians, being pacifists, greeted each other with this sign on meeting and at the beginning of every eucharistic service”.

    from: Gerard Noel, The Renaissance Popes, New York, Carroll and Graf publishers, 2006, pp. 341-342.

    August 22, 2015 at 6:22 pm
    • Athanasius


      Do not concern yourself with that quote, it is utter and errant nonsense. The person who wrote that is just a liar, simple as that.

      Just one example: The sign of peace was from the earliest times exchanged by the clergy alone during Mass, and it was not a handshake as we see today, it was a fraternal embrace.

      Like so many of the novelties that were written into the New Mass, the sign of peace was extended to the laity in breach of the early Christian practice. Communion in the hand is another case in hand. The early Chrsitians never touched the Sacred Host, they leaned forward and consumed from the palm of the right hand, NEVER FROM THE LEFT. At no time did the Eucharist touch their fingers. Also, they washed their hands before Holy Communion and the women covered their hands with a white cloth. So you see, the person who wrote the above passage is trying to hoodwing the reader. All the innovations in the New Mass were copied directly from the Protestant Reformers of the 16th century, who also broke with the liturgical Tradition handed down.

      I hope this goes some way to answering your query.

      August 22, 2015 at 8:52 pm
      • Athanasius


        Just thought I would let you know that Gerard Noel, the author of that paragraph you’re questioning, wrote disparagingly about Pope Pius XII. This should really tell you all you need to know about Gerard Noel, who was (is?) president of the Council of Christians and Jews. Like all newspaper editors (he was editor of the Catholic Herald), Noel doesn’t let the truth get in the way of a good story.

        August 22, 2015 at 9:05 pm
    • editor


      The above comment of yours about the Mass would have been better placed on the new thread ABOUT the new Mass click here to read as you have obviously missed it.

      Just a reminder to check the topics before using this General Discussion thread and it gets filled up so quickly, with a variety of questions and comments on various topics – thus,lengthy debate is not really possible here. Best to check the topics before posting here – for future reference. Please and thank you.

      August 22, 2015 at 10:33 pm
  • morgana

    The disgraceful spectacle that is Glasgow pride disrupting the city for two days.When are my rights going to be enforced that I don’t want to or have to accept that this is right .Catholics have human rights as well.Oh wait I better correct that if you don’t accept it your homophobic.Everybody and their granny are allowed an opinion but God help you if you’re a Catholic, nobody is interested.

    August 22, 2015 at 6:24 pm
  • leprechaun

    Madame Editor,

    According to a poster on the SSPX web site, there will be a National pilgrimage to Walsingham on Saturday September 5th under the guidance of Fr. Ockerse. This is being held for the solemn consecration “of our faithful, our families, our country” to the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary.

    The pilgrimage will commence at 1.00pm at the Slipper Chapel, and will cover the one mile or so to Walsingham where Mass will be offered in the open air ruins of the Augustinian Priory of the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, as the Diocesan authorities will not permit the use of the nearby Catholic church by the SSPX and its adherents. Mass will also be offered at 11.00 am on Sunday 6th September in the same ruins, and there are numerous B&B establishments which will accept two-night bookings at quite modest prices.

    Sadly, numbers rarely impress, which must be a cause of great sorrow to the Blessed Virgin Mary given that this is a once-a-year opportunity to make the pilgrimage, and so close to her birthday on September 8th too.

    May I, Madame Editor, through this blog, urge as many as possible of our bloggers and lurkers to undertake this penance and to offer a prayer also for all those Catholics whose ears and eyes and minds are so firmly closed against Tradition and its champion, the SSPX.

    Thank you – and here is the poster:

    August 23, 2015 at 10:03 am
  • Helen

    Can anybody help me find the link to the baby’s brain being harvested whilst his heart beat? I looked on the Planned Parenthood thread but can’t find it. I sent the link to a friend last week and she has come back to say it is no longer available. Surely you computer whizz kids can find it??

    August 24, 2015 at 4:27 pm
  • morgana

    If you type in just what you have baby’s brain harvested whilst heart beats the article will come up on life site news

    August 24, 2015 at 4:53 pm
  • Nicky

    I couldn’t believe it when I read that Martin Luther is to have his own square named after him in Rome.

    August 24, 2015 at 11:55 pm
  • Helen

    Morgana, thanks to you too.

    August 25, 2015 at 10:08 am
  • westminsterfly

    I’m putting this message on the Book Sale thread, on this thread as well, in case anyone misses it!


    Editor is not too well at the moment, so apologises for her absence from the blog. She asked me to post the following list of books which Westminster Fly is offering free to readers/bloggers, with a charge for p & p only. Anyone who wants any of the books should send a request to him, with their address etc, by email to

    He will then send the books with notification of the cost of p & p and the purchaser should then send a cheque made payable to Catholic Truth, marked “Books” (either on back of cheque or in a separate note) and when the exchanges are completed, we will send a cheque for the total p & p costs to Westminster Fly. Please do not use PayPal for these transactions, as PayPal donations are marked for the Catholic Truth fund only.

    Now follows the book list – free to a good home… (cost of p & p only – see above)

    Quantity Title Author

    1 True Devotion to Mary St Louis de Montfort
    1 The Rhine Flows into the Tiber Ralph Wiltgen
    1 The Order of Melchisedech Michael Davies
    1 Pope Paul’s New Mass Michael Davies
    1 Pope John’s Council Michael Davies
    1 Cranmer’s Godly Order Michael Davies
    1 The 2nd Vatican Council and Religious Liberty Michael Davies
    1 The Complete Catholic Handbook Carmel of Plymouth
    5 A landscape with Dragons Michael O’Brien
    1 A Catholic replies to Professor Dawkins Thomas Crean OP
    1 The Reform of the Roman Liturgy its Problems and Background Mons. Klaus Gamber
    1 The Ceremonies of the Roman Rite Described Fortesque – O’Connell
    1 Holy Bible (St James)
    1 The Pope’s Armada Gordon Urquhart
    1 The Death of the West Patrick J Buchanan
    1 Women Priests and other Fantasies Rev.Vincent Michel
    2 Three Popes and a Cardinal Malachi Martin
    1 The Way of Divine Love Sr Josefa Menendez
    1 The Catechism of the Catholic Church
    1 St Thomas Aquinas Jacques Maritain
    1 Orthodoxy G K Chesterton
    1 The Everlasting Man G K Chesterton
    1 Tremendous Trifles G K Chesterton
    1 What’s wrong with the World G K Chesterton
    1 Selected Essays G K Chesterton
    1 Ballad of the White Horse G K Chesterton
    1 Not the Whole Truth John Cardinal Heenan
    1 Apologia Pro Vita Sua John Cardinal Newman
    1 St Teresa Of Jesus Fr. Gabriel ODC
    1 The Catholic Church through the Ages Martin P. Harney SJ
    1 St Emile de Rodat Trans. By Gaetan Bernoville
    1 The Divine Armoury of Holy Scripture Kenelm Vaughan
    1 set In Conversation with God Vols 1 – V11 Francis Fernandez
    1 Catholic London Douglas Newton
    1 John Henry Newman John Moody
    1 Emmaus Denis McBride
    1 Life of Mons R H Benson Vol 2 C C Martindale SJ
    1 The Stripping of the Altars Eamon Duffy
    1 Jean de Brebeuf Joseph P Donnelly SJ
    1 The Whole Truth about Fatima Vol 2 Frere Michel de la St. Trinite
    1 Witnesses to Jesus M. Malinski
    1 When God made the World (Childs book) David Hunter
    1 Butlers Lives of the Saints (Concise Ed) Forward by Basil Cardinal Hume
    1 A Catholic Commentary on Holy Scripture
    1 St Ignatius of Loyala Leonard Von Matt & Hugo Rahner
    1 St Theresa and Liseux a Photo Documentary Pierre Descouvement & Helmuth Nils Loose
    1 John Paul 11 Fatima Pilgrim a Photo Documentary
    1 The Holy Land Photo Book
    1 Cause of the Canonisation of the Blessed Martyrs of England and Wales, Official Presentation
    of the Documents on Martyrdom and Cult to the Sacred Congregation of Rites Historical Section Archdiocese of Westminster

    August 25, 2015 at 12:22 pm
  • leprechaun

    Madame Editor,

    Do get well soon.

    I have offered up a prayer to St. Luke for your speedy restoration to full health.

    August 25, 2015 at 2:37 pm
  • catholicconvert1

    I was in a conversation with a Catholic friend some months ago, and we were discussing the Anti-Christ. She said even if the Pope is the Anti-Christ ‘we have to obey him’. Why do we have to obey him? Why would we want to obey Christ’s enemy?

    August 25, 2015 at 2:44 pm
  • Athanasius


    I wouldn’t get too much into that kind of thinking and conversation, which is really just a waste of time. Whatever errors Pope Francis is guilty of, and there are few, he most certainly is not the Anti-Christ.

    August 25, 2015 at 4:27 pm
    • catholicconvert1

      I think she was referring to the Pope/ Papacy in general, and not just Pope Francis or his errors.

      August 26, 2015 at 12:00 pm
  • Athanasius


    I join Leprechaun in wishing you a very speedy recovery.

    August 25, 2015 at 4:28 pm
  • Therese

    Me too Editor. Get well soon.

    August 25, 2015 at 8:49 pm
  • Helen

    Get well soon, Editor. We’ll have a bit of peace for a while!!

    August 25, 2015 at 10:32 pm
  • gabriel syme

    Yes, get well soon Editor!

    August 26, 2015 at 10:18 am
  • editor

    Thank you all for your kind “get well” wishes, but I’m fine, really, It’s not that kind of sickness – maybe closer to the “sick and tired” variety but be that as it may, I’m hoping to be able to catch up with comments over the next couple of days. Although I’ve already caught up with yours, Helen; that “we’ll have a bit of peace for a while” comment has been duly noted!

    I’ve now posted a new thread, updated the website and voting poll and believe that makes me eligible for a Devon Cream Tea, so I’m off to catch the next train!

    Sincere thanks to you all for your kind good wishes. You make it all worthwhile – that “sick and tired” feeling, I mean 😀

    August 26, 2015 at 8:25 pm
    • Helen

      That reprieve didn’t last long!

      August 26, 2015 at 11:35 pm
      • editor

        Now, here we have a woman who is manifestly looking for trouble. Helen, If I were you, I’d claim my money back from that Charm School. I really would… with interest… 😀

        August 27, 2015 at 12:30 am
  • gabriel syme

    I have some (doubtless silly) questions regarding abstinence:

    I abstain from meat on Fridays and usually have fish as a result eg: tuna sandwiches for lunch, then something like fish cakes / salmon fillets, or even a fish supper, for dinner.

    One Friday recently I had wolfed my fish supper as usual, (I am noted for inhaling my food!), and noticed that my wife (not Catholic) had left the last of her black pudding supper. I was about to hoover up the remainder of the black pudding, but she said I could not have it as it was a friday. I was baffled at first, thinking “this isnt meat” but then thought the better of it and so didnt eat it.

    So, are blood products like black pudding considered as meat, when it comes to abstinence?

    I tried to find out via searching online, but this only confused me further as I found various references saying Christians should not eat blood products at all. There were a few Leviticus references, but also one from the New Testament, Acts 15:20, given to support this.

    Acts 15:20

    But that we write unto them, that they refrain themselves from the pollutions of idols, and from fornication, and from things strangled, and from blood.

    So I guess my question expands into asking what is the status / permissability of blood-based foods in general for Catholics?

    I had never heard of this prohibition of blood before. When I was a child, I always knew about fish on fridays – even though the practice had been largely abandoned at that time – but I had never heard of issues surrounding blood.

    Finally, I actually really enjoy fish / other seafood – does this devalue my abstinence?

    Despite my enjoying seafood, there have been many times where I have coveted something involving meat to eat on Fridays – rolls and bacon or sausage at breakfast, or a burger at lunch, or for dinner a chicken curry, chicken rogan josh, spaghetti bolognaise or a sausage supper etc etc – have always denied myself and stuck to the fish.

    August 27, 2015 at 1:48 pm
    • Confitebor Domino

      According to the Catholic Encyclopaedia:

      Throughout the Latin Church the law of abstinence prohibits all responsible subjects from indulging in meat diet on duly appointed days. Meat diet comprises the flesh, blood, or marrow of such animals and birds as constitute flesh meat according to the appreciation of intelligent and law-abiding Christians. source (emphasis added)

      I have to admit I hadn’t thought of black pudding being a problem – but then I can’t stand the stuff!

      August 27, 2015 at 2:42 pm
      • gabriel syme

        Thanks for that reply Confitebor – very helpful. Sorry about my delay responding!

        September 1, 2015 at 3:56 pm
  • gabriel syme

    (I have also posted this on the recent Pope Francis thread:)

    As part of his year of Mercy, Pope Francis has confirmed that SSPX priests can validly absolve sins – which should put an end to the mean spirited talk we hear from various other quarters:

    “A final consideration concerns those faithful who for various reasons choose to attend churches officiated by priests of the Fraternity of St Pius X. This Jubilee Year of Mercy excludes no one. From various quarters, several Brother Bishops have told me of their good faith and sacramental practice, combined however with an uneasy situation from the pastoral standpoint. I trust that in the near future solutions may be found to recover full communion with the priests and superiors of the Fraternity. In the meantime, motivated by the need to respond to the good of these faithful, through my own disposition, I establish that those who during the Holy Year of Mercy approach these priests of the Fraternity of St Pius X to celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation shall validly and licitly receive the absolution of their sins.”

    This is another step towards normalisation of the SSPX situaiton (Francis alludes that this is imminent.)

    Although the text is written as though this only applies during the year of mercy, it is unthinkable that this official stance would not now become the norm.

    September 1, 2015 at 12:19 pm
    • Muffin Man Returns

      This Pope is an enigma. But it has been said that canonical regularisation is more possible under this pontificate than it ever could be. Bishop Fellay said “we are on the eve of important events that we cannot yet define”.

      Maybe HH Francis knows that after October the bishops conferences will be granted the privilege to change ‘praxis’ vis-à-vis the sacraments and the ‘re-married’ within their respective jurisdictions. He therefore feels it is only fair that traditionalists and conservatives should be granted freedom to go their own way as well. Maybe he thinks a de jure factional Church is an honest solution to the de facto factional Church we have at the moment…

      If this is what he thinks, I am inclined to agree. Lets stop pretending we’re all the same. If this is his plan we would end up like the Anglican Communion. In any case, materially, we already are. When Damian Thompson floated this idea in the Spectator recently I thought he was being silly, but he might actually be on to something. If the Church splinters, it might actually start to convince people there is a crisis.

      I first heard this news from WDTPRS. Somehow, Fr Z seems to make it all about himself.

      September 1, 2015 at 3:21 pm
      • gabriel syme

        Muffin Man,

        I certainly hope the Bishops Conferences are not given such freedom after the Synod! Anytime Bishops Conferences are given any authority, it seems things immediately slip to the lowest common denominator as they chase after popularity like Z-list celebrities.

        I have feared what you suggest though, that maybe Francis’ apparent kindness towards the Society is an attempt to be even handed with regard to concessions elsewhere.

        I think it would be a big mistaken to change practice with regard to the divorced and remarried. For starters, we would be protestants in all but name. And It would solve nothing – the complaints of lack of charity / inclusiveness etc would simply immediately move on to moaning about the inability to have a 2nd Church Wedding.

        I think the Anglican communion is the last thing we want to be like! The Church was strong and unified for nearly 2,000 years (various blips not withstanding). It can be so again. After all, that is what Our Lord wanted. “Unity in diversity” is no unity at all, it is a pretence. Sadly “pretence” increasingly sums up the Novus Ordo Church.

        If Francis is concerned about a factional Church – he only has himself and other prelates of his age to blame. He should seek to tackle dissent and lack of catechesis – not compound the mess Bishops have created over the last decades. Prelates must have the humility to accept that the path taken over the past decades has been disasterous, and must get things back on track.

        Ultimately Francis would be a fool to be positive towards the Society in this way – only then to create a new obstacle for faithful Catholics by undermining traditional practice and all moral teaching.

        He would be giving with one hand, and slapping in the face with the other!

        September 1, 2015 at 3:56 pm
    • editor

      Gabriel Syme,

      I’ve answered on the Pope Francis thread and it would be best if all future comments on this were posted there, as this one is just about due to close and re-open as GD # 9. Easier to follow the discussion on the other thread, methnks.

      September 1, 2015 at 10:14 pm
  • morgana

    Pope Francis making it easier for women and doctors to seek forgiveness for abortion only for the coming jubilee year beginning in December.

    September 1, 2015 at 6:04 pm

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