As reported by Catholic News Agency:
Father Frank Pavone, head of the controversial pro-life group Priests for Life, came under fire Monday for a video of him [posted at PFL’s Facebook page] standing behind an altar with an aborted baby in an effort to support Donald Trump.
Among those who saw fit to criticize Fr. Pavone’s video, which has since been posted to YouTube, was a spokesperson for the Archdiocese of New York.
According to CNA:
Ed Mechmann, director of public policy for the Archdiocese of New York, said the use of an aborted baby ‘as a prop’ is ‘absolutely appalling, and deserves to be repudiated by all of us who consider ourselves to be pro-life in the fullest meaning of that word.’
Get that? “Pro-life in the fullest meaning of that word…”
Wink, wink, nod, nod… Long live Joseph Bernardin!
No surprise here. The Archdiocese of New York is, after all, under the leadership of the glad-handing buffoon Timothy Dolan who recently yucked it up with Hillary Clinton at last month’s Al Smith fundraising dinner; just as he did four years ago with Barack Obama.
Pavone is also coming under fire, however, from some “conservative” Catholics who, although they number themselves among the pro-lifers, are outraged by what they consider the sacrilegious misuse of an altar.
I believe that Fr. Pavone is to be commended for providing a stark image of a dreadful reality that far too few among us appear willing to acknowledge.
Consider, for example, the godless leftwingers (Democrats, here in the U.S.) who consider themselves intellectually superior to people of faith.
These are the sort that claim to place all of their confidence in “science” alone (which just so happens to consist in the observation of objective reality), and yet are Hell bent and determined to close their eyes to any evidence that might suggest that unborn children are none other than defenseless human beings and not simply “blobs of tissue.”
Of course these hypocrites who call abortion “health care” object to Fr. Pavone’s video!
That said, what I mainly have in mind is another kind of denial; one that is every bit as diabolical and dangerous.
You see, it seems to me that Fr. Pavone, even if only inadvertently, made a brutally honest statement in his controversial video; one that no doubt escaped the notice of those who most need to hear it.
As I’ve written in the past (and invite you to read once more), the mission of Priests for Life, in spite of its Catholic-sounding name, isn’t being approached as that which is part and parcel of the mission of the Church; carried out in adoration for her Founder and Head, Jesus Christ.
Rather, its mission flows directly from the tenets of a false, anthropocentric religion, Pro-Lifeism, and the worship of its false god; the human embryo.
If that seems a bit harsh, consider Fr. Pavone’s praise for Amoris Laetitia – a text that blatantly blasphemes Our Lord while shamelessly disseminating heresy and leading souls to Hell:
The document is a beautifully written pro-life affirmation of the Church’s wisdom … In clear language, Pope Francis speaks of the great value of the embryo and his worth, starting at conception and regardless of the circumstances in which he or she was conceived.
Never mind the insults heaped upon Christ; Francis venerated the human embryo, and for Fr. Pavone, that’s good enough.
This, my friends, is precisely the attitude of Pro-Lifeism; a movement wherein the human being takes priority over Christ, and the Sacrifice of the Cross plays second fiddle to the immolation that takes place via the scourge of abortion.
Surely this describes, not just Priests for Life, but many other ostensibly Catholic pro-life organizations that are singularly ordered toward securing temporal life for human beings until such time as either birth or natural death occurs; with little apparent concern for the mission that was given to the Church by Christ.
Don’t get me wrong; Catholicism goes hand in hand with such activities as defending the unborn and offering charitable assistance to pregnant women in need. Being a Catholic necessarily means being “pro-life;” however, and this is important – in that order.
This does not, however, describe the priorities of Priests for Life.
As such, it is only fitting that Fr. Pavone should place a human being, the true object of veneration for the practitioners of Pro-Lifeism, on an altar where one might otherwise reasonably expect to find Our Lord Jesus Christ.
Not just any altar, mind you, but on a Novus Ordo altar, which is not to be confused with the Altar of Sacrifice upon which the Most Holy Eucharist is confected during the Traditional Latin Mass.
Indeed, these two altars are as different from one another as the rites that make use of them are disparate in themselves.
The traditional Mass and the sacred signs therein communicate very clearly and without ambiguity that the sacred rite consists in the propitiatory Sacrifice of Jesus Christ and the worship of the Divine Majesty that poor sinners like us make our own through, with, and in Him.
It is with this in mind that the altar was well described by Geoffrey Webb in his 1933 masterwork, in part, as follows:
Not only does [the Church] consider [the altar] the central focus of the whole liturgy, the raison de’être of the building in which it stands; not only does she indicate that the church exists for the altar, rather than the altar for the church; not only does she look upon it as the sacrificial stone, upon which Christ, our Priest and Victim, offers Himself daily in His Eucharistic Sacrifice, which is the central act of her liturgy; but she has proclaimed again and again that in her mind the altar represents her Lord Himself. He is Altar, Victim and Priest; and the reverence for the altar, expressed in the restraint and dignity of its design, symbolizes the reverence due to Christ Himself. (The Liturgical Altar, Romanitas Press)
The altar is so entirely central to the traditional Mass that Webb could go on to say:
He is Altar, Victim and Priest; and the reverence for the altar, expressed in the restraint and dignity of its design, symbolizes the reverence due to Christ Himself. (ibid.)
Martin Luther – leader of the Protestant revolt (and hero of Jorge Bergoglio) – had other ideas.
He hated the Mass. He despised the priesthood. He called the Offertory “an abomination” for the simple reason that it “smacks of sacrifice.”
Now, let’s be honest; there’s a reason protestants are so much more comfortable at the Novus Ordo than they are at the traditional Mass; the rite was crafted very specifically with this intention in mind!
This is why so many of those ancient elements that point to the Mass as true Sacrifice, its propitiatory nature, and the unique identity of the priest as he through whom the High Priest acts in persona Christi (e.g., the Offertory, the priest’s Confiteor, the Placeat tibi, just to name a few) were unceremoniously stripped from the traditional Mass to create it.
What remains is a rite the outward signs of which are unduly man-centered, and this includes the replacement of the Altar of Sacrifice with something that resembles a common table built for mere human activity.
All of this having been said, it seems to me that Fr. Pavone provided a great service in making use of an altar as he did – the picture worth 1,000 words that he painted demonstrating a most unfortunate truth:
Both the Novus Ordo Missae and the Catholic pro-life movement have largely supplanted the timeless Sacrifice of Christ, the primacy of Divine worship, and the mission that Our Lord gave to His Church in favor of earthbound activities that are focused almost exclusively on the temporal state of the human person.
Where was the outage when jp2 put a pagan idol on the tabernacle at Assisi?
Wow. How on earth did you come to these conclusions. I am kind of astounded at the great points are you making here, but I admit, it’s kind of blowing my mind.
I did not know of Fr. Pavone’s support for AL. At this point anyone who supports AL is apostate or a sycophant, either way, not interested in their opinion on anything. I can see what you are saying about putting man ahead of Christ in this case. I’m going to have to think about this.
Can I ask, was it wrong, canonically speaking, to put the poor child on an altar? I am reading differing opinions on this.
I was all over Facebook defending Fr. Pavone against really horrible statements. It’s getting so you don’t know what is what or who is who. Thank you for your terrific analysis and commentary.
When I first saw this helpless slaughtered child my thought was of Michaelangelo’s Pieta.
“Then he shall say to them also that shall be on his left hand: Depart from me, you cursed, into everlasting fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry, and you gave me not to eat: I was thirsty, and you gave me not to drink. I was a stranger, and you took me not in: naked, and you covered me not: sick and in prison, and you did not visit me. Then they also shall answer him, saying: Lord, when did we see thee hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister to thee? Then he shall answer them, saying: Amen I say to you, as long as you did it not to one of these least, neither did you do it to me. ” Matthew 25: 41-45
Shocking though it may be, whatever was inflicted on that poor chilad was inflicted on Christ Himself.
Many Catholics that support pro-life also support contraception with the (false) belief that it prevents abortion. This is again the man-centred understanding of the Fifth Commandment that typically occupies the minds of Cafeteria Catholics who agree with one teaching and disregard another (even one that is closely tied to the one they agree with). It’s also amazing how people like Fr. Pavone have the courage to display the horror of abortion but fail to understand why it has got to this stage because they have been under the influence of the man-centred religion of Vatican II! Francis has focused all his attention on immigration and the environment and thrown the occasional anti-abortion statement to throw a bone to the Fr. Pavone’s out there. Most Trads would know that if our beloved Church was serious about stopping the cruelty of abortions then it could literally put so much pressure so as to shut down the practice altogether. Instead the conciliar Church releases sex-ed programs that, if not promoting sexual immorality, do nothing to curb it. Abortion cannot be stopped by simply running rallies in an attempt to shut down the abortion industry. That’s like trying to put out a fire that has been caused by a gas leak which nobody is paying any attention to. Abortion will be halted by stopping sexual immorality and teaching our young Catholics (as the starting point) of the gift that God has bestowed on us that cannot be abused by any means and must be reserved to what God has designed it for. Fix the gas leak and there won’t be any need to put out future fires.
The baby-murdering dog, hillary, lost (thank you God)…..jorge is probably beside himself.
THANK GOD FOR TRUMP VICTORY. He’s more Catholic than Bergoglio!!!!
Exactly. Pagan idols and soccer balls. A desoerate woman put her near dead baby on an Altar and the infant was healed. Maybe this little martyr will help end the devil’s sacrament of Abortion. And the Democrat’s…but I repeat myself.
There have been images online of the murdered innocents for many years. One glance would slap you into reality but most people fear to face reality. Thanks to this good priest what he has done just might force the image onto world of the intentionally blind.
Good for Fr. Pavone! I think a big fat donation to Priests for Life is in order!
P.S. Today should be day #1 for all people of goodwill to begin praying for our new President. The only thing missing from this good man is the heart of a Catholic. Let us begin praying for his conversion. Garcia Moreno, pray for our new President!
Yes, I distinctly heard wailing and the gnashing of teeth coming from the direction of Rome this morning. Deo gratias.
Bad news on his support of the evil AL. Prayers for the conversion of Fr. Pavone too.
Vatican official congratulations Trump:http://www.catholicnews.com/services/englishnews/2016/top-vatican-official-congratulates-trump-offers-prayers.cfm
I don’t see anything here about the defense of the unborn.
Maybe Trump and Father Pavone could work together to convert Bergoglio & Co. including the spineless bishops.
More than a few supporters of the ongoing holocaust of legalized fetal infanticide got quite upset when viewing the following video, wherein I include about 2 seconds of images of murdered fetal infants:
Was Hillary DRUNK During this Speech??? (Dade City, FL 11/1/16) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bk5EHTe-bo0&lc=z13ad1ajqvn5d5gut23kztzokpyhc3w1t
Our Lady of Fatima said that “In Portugal, the dogma of the Faith will always be preserved etc.”, implying that it will be lost elsewhere or even everywhere. Perhaps this is the “gas leak” that if not fixed, all other repairs will be in vain.
Normal people live on air, water, food. Hillary lives on POWER. Now she is starving to death!