I’m not a fan of cinema, never have been. Sure, I’ve enjoyed watching certain movies over the years, some even more than once, but for the most part I just don’t like them.
When I was younger, I couldn’t bear to watch Hollywood fiction because, inevitably it seemed, the storyline would include a plot twist so highly unlikely that I just couldn’t accept it. Today, my disdain for the movie industry has more to do with how often films are so obviously designed to indoctrinate audiences in furtherance of the diabolical.
And yet, at Mass yesterday, at the outset of the Roman Canon, one of the most famous and oft repeated lines from a major motion picture came to mind:
“I’m going to make him an offer he can’t refuse.”
Te igitur, clementissime Pater…
The prayer begins, “Therefore, most merciful Father…”
As the word implies, that which follows is founded upon that which preceded; this therefore that. In the case of the Canon, what immediately precedes the Te igitur is the Preface. While there are a number of Prefaces prayed throughout the liturgical year, all of them begin with the words, Vere dignum et iustum est…
“It is truly meet and just, right and availing unto salvation…”
It is only after having acknowledged, in faith, that the most merciful Father is the Source of our salvation, that we are therefore moved to seek His blessing in the Te igitur which reads:
Therefore, we humbly pray and beseech Thee, most merciful Father, through Jesus Christ Thy Son, Our Lord, to receive and to bless these (✠) gifts, these (✠) presents, these (✠) holy unspotted oblations, which we offer up to Thee, in the first place, for Thy Holy Catholic Church, that it may please Thee to grant her peace, to guard, unite, and guide her, throughout the world: as also for Thy servant N., our Pope, and N., our Bishop, and for all who are orthodox in belief and who profess the Catholic and apostolic faith.
Think about what is taking place in the Holy Sacrifice of the Altar as made known through this prayer in particular.
The priest, acting in persona Christi, is offering to God the Father the very Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ, His dearly belove Son.
One need not delve deeply into an examination of theological principles to know that, truly, this is an offer He can’t refuse. What does merit further contemplation, however, is the purpose of the oblation being offered.
As we see in the Te igitur, the offering is being made for a threefold purpose, all of which are interrelated – for the Church, for the sacred hierarchy, for the faithful.
“In the first place,” the Father is being beseeched to accept the offering that in return He may bless the Holy Catholic Church, the solitary ark of salvation. Specifically, God the most merciful is being asked to grant her peace, to guard, unite, and guide her.
I ask you: Is there any chance He may decline?
Because I go to the Father: and whatsoever you shall ask the Father in my name, that will I do: that the Father may be glorified in the Son. (John 14:13)
Again, it takes but a modicum of faith to know that the answer is no, the Father cannot refuse the offering being made. As such, there can be no question that the Holy Catholic Church – the true Church – enjoys the divinely conferred gifts of peace, unity and safety, and this because it is God Himself who guides her.
So, where is it? Is it in Rome, under the headship of Francis?
The conciliar church as made manifest in its “full communion” members constitutes a society eminently unpeaceful, disunified, and unsafe. It tolerates and even sanctions dissent and disagreement. It holds and propagates disparate beliefs. It forms its members in doctrines that endanger the soul.
Only the willfully blind can deny that the conciliar church is unorthodox in its authoritatively held and officially disseminated beliefs. One need look no further than its non-negotiable doctrine of religious liberty and its treatment of heretics, heathens, and Jews for concrete irrefutable proof that its “full communion” members, including its hierarchy even to the head, do not profess the Catholic and apostolic faith.
So, the next time you’re assisting at Holy Mass and the Te igitur is prayed, confident that the most merciful Father cannot refuse the offer being made, ask Him for understanding, that you may know where to find the peace, the unity and the safety that ever belongs to His Church, and just as importantly, where not to bother looking.