Monday, April 30, 2007

Website Policies

When material is made available on the internet it immediately becomes open to unscrupulous scrutiny and criticism. To help manage this, it becomes necessary to compose certain "policies", concerning content, contact, and referrals. These are contained below.

Our position regarding Orthodoxy and accuracy:

"As far as we know, all content contained on this site is wholly accurate and orthodox, that is in that the information herein contained is accurate and not containing errors, as also, in accord with the official dogmatic and magisterial teaching of the Roman Catholic Church. In the event that any doctrinal or moral error may be discovered on our part, having been undeniably demonstrated to us, we will humbly submit to the authority of Holy Mother Church."
But, since this is best found by our loyal readers and devotees to Holy Mother Church, we encourage our readers to contact us regarding any such error that may be found in some of our writings via email or Comments, which also prompts us to define the proper procedures regarding such contact, we call it our "Contact Policy":
"Feel free to tell us what you think about our content, we are always looking for ways to improve, and we welcome constructive criticism in our efforts to do this. However, comments should be courteous and insightful, they should be relevant the issues present in posts on this blog to which comments are attached, or to previous comments attached to the particular post. The administrator of this blog reserves the right to decide what will be posted in the manner of comments, touching on relevancy and decency among other things. Also, the submission of a comment does not necessarily mean that it will be posted. Comments are also subject to editing. Commenters should have an identity, please use a name, anonymous comments are no longer the norm."

And since we encourage such contact, it also becomes prudent to inform our readers of the fact that their comments are liable to be posted on this blog, we do this through our "correspondence policy":
"All correspondences between the authors of this blog and viewers/commenter's is subject to publishing, unless otherwise specified by the commenter."

In order to avoid misunderstandings regarding the links which we provide, which are surprisingly common, we have policies concerning external links, since they seem to be an issue of contention for some.
"This site may link you to other sites on the Internet or otherwise include references to information, and documents provided by other parties which the authors of this site have found interesting or useful and believes may be interesting or useful to readers of this website. These externally linked webistes may contain material that the authors of VITW may not necessarily agree with, viewer discretion is advised. These other sites and parties are not under our control, and we are not responsible for the accuracy of information or any aspect of the content of such sites, nor are we responsible for errors or omissions in any references to other parties or their material. The inclusion of such a link or reference is provided merely as a convenience and/or for educational purposes and does not, therefore, imply endorsement of, or association with, the site or party by us, either express or implied."

Links Disclaimer:

If links are posted, it means that when they were reviewed, they had a character that was relevent and not objectionable, though this is subject to change because the content belongs to those who own the respective sites, and they may choose to do what they wish with their own property.

They, the links, are provided to advance, as far as possible, a comprehensive understanding of historical Catholicism and the traditionalist movement itself, that is - educational purposes - in so far as they accomplish that goal, but no further [if a link fails to accomplish that goal then please use common sense and leave it alone and think no more of it]. We ask readers to use their own good judgement about what they find on other websites as we can't guarantee their content, and what's more, we don't take responsibility for the actions or words of other authors/bloggers.

Copyright Policy:
This web site may contain copyrighted material the use of which may not always have been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of political, human, religious, social, and Historical issues. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law.

We hope you benefit from our poor efforts here and may God bless you and Mary keep you,

Leo, co-editor and administrator of "A Voice Crying in the Wilderness", a website devoted to Traditional Catholicism.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Limbo on a limb

Very recently the Vatican came out with a document that questioned the doctrine of Limbo.
Many believe that Limbo is nothing more than a theological speculation. They believe that Limbo has never been declared dogma, and thus is not to be believed as such, and we are free to question it's possibile truthfulness and existence. Many clerics and theological works of the last century have stated that the Limbo of the Children is nothing more than this sort of theological speculation, and thus it has passed into the minds and hearts of the laity. We know that unbaptized infants are conceived in a state of original sin. So how does all of this downplaying of this dogma of the faith square with this dogmatic fact? Below I will attempt to illustrate, not only that Limbo exists, but that it is de fide, to be believed as Catholic truth, from the Fathers, theologians, the popes, and the Councils of the Church. The Catholic Church teaches that no one can be freed from original sin without baptism, and that infants are excluded from the beatific vision if they die so unbaptized, that is, with original sin still on their souls. This is because no one can see the kingdom of God without the Sacrament of Baptism (Jn. 3:5), and this includes infants, indeed it includes the whole human race. The Catholic Church's teaching is that children and infants who die without baptism descend immediately into Hell, but that they do not suffer the fires of Hell. They go to a place in Hell called the limbo of the infants. The most specific definition of the Church that there is no way for an infant to be saved without the Sacrament of Baptism follows from one, Pope Eugene IV:

“Regarding children, indeed, because of danger of death, which can often take place, when no help can be brought to them by another remedy than through the sacrament of baptism, through which they are snatched from the domination of the Devil and adopted among the sons of God, it advises that holy baptism ought not be deferred for forty or eighty days, or any time according to the observance of certain people…” (Council of Florence, Session 11, Feb. 4, 1442)

This teaches that there is no other remedy other than baptism in the justification of a soul in original sin. It teaches that those in original sin are under the domination of the devil, and that the only way to become a Son of God and an heir of heaven is to have that sin washed away in Baptism, and thus, it should not be delayed because of local customs. Florence basically continued, in this manner, in the Tradition recieved from the Council of Carthage:

“It has been decided likewise that if anyone says that for this reason the Lord said: ‘In my Father’s house there are many mansions’ that it might be understood that in the kingdom of heaven there will be some middle place or some place anywhere where the blessed infants live who departed from this life without baptism, without which they cannot enter into the kingdom of heaven, which is life eternal, let him be anathema.” (Pope St. Zosimus, The Council of Carthage, Canon on Sin and Grace, 417 A.D.)

It anathematizes anyone who would say that there is a place where infants, who are not initiated, go to some place besides Hell, because since they do not have Baptism, they cannot enter into the Kingdom of Heaven and thus have eternal life, and they do not go to purgatory because that is a place of purgation for those who have sinned actually, been forgiven, and are saved from Hell, and that there is no middle place outside of Heaven or Hell where these infants can go, thus, it logically follows that these infants go to Hell, since there is no alternative. Does this mean that the issue is up for debate? Can we question these dogmatic pronouncements? Limbo is not a Middle place, despite the misconceptions of some misinformed Catholics, but a punishment of the separation of God which is a "different" punishment from those who have sinned and are damned to Hell fire. A Tradition also echoed by the Council of Trent:

If anyone says that recently born babies should not be baptized even if they have been born to baptized parents; or says that they are indeed baptized for the remission of sins, but incur no trace of the original sin of Adam needing to be cleansed by the laver of rebirth for them to obtain eternal life, with the necessary consequence that in their case there is being understood a form of baptism for the remission of sins which is not true, but false: let him be anathema.” (Pope Paul III, The Council of Trent, On Original Sin, Session V)
Trent declares that if anyone says that infants recieve the sacrament of Baptism for the remission of sins, but that infants don't incur original sin which needs to be so cleansed, that they are anathema - it is heresey for anyone to say that infants don’t need the “laver of rebirth” (sacramental baptism) to attain eternal life. The Council of Florence goes on to say:

We define also that… the souls of those who depart this life in actual mortal sin, or in original sin alone, go straightaway to hell, but to undergo punishments of different kinds.” (Pope Eugene IV, Council of Florence, “Letentur coeli,” Sess. 6, July 6, 1439)

The doctrine which rejects as a Pelagian fable, that place of the lower regions (which the faithful generally designate by the name of the limbo of the children) in which the souls of those departing with the sole guilt of original sin are punished with the punishment of the condemned, exclusive of the punishment of fire, just as if, by this very fact, that these who remove the punishment of fire introduced that middle place and state free of guilt and of punishment between the kingdom of God and eternal damnation, such as that about which the Pelagians idly talk” – Condemned as false, rash, injurious to Catholic schools. (Pope Pius VI, Auctorem fidei, Aug. 28, 1794)

The Council of Trent defined that infants do contract original sin which needs to cleansed, by baptism, without which cleansing they cannot enter heaven. The Council of Florence declared that those who depart this life in origina sin alone, such as would the infant who is not baptized would have, would descend into Hell, but to be punished differently from those with actual sin. Catholic Tradition teaches that they go to a place in Hell where there is no fire, they experience eternal separation from God. Auctorem fidei says the belief that condemns Limbo as some middle place between the punishment of God and eternal damnation, is condemned.

Pope Pius XI, Mit brennender Sorge (# 25), March 14, 1937: “‘Original sin’ is the hereditary but impersonal fault of Adam’s descendants, who have sinned in him. It is the loss of grace, and therefore eternal life, together with a propensity to evil, which everybody must, with the assistance of grace, penance, resistance and moral effort, repress and conquer.”
Pius IX teaches that Original sin is inherited by all men, and infants, and that by this Original Sin all men are by nature devoid of eternal life, so that infants with original sin do not have, and cannot have, eternal life.

St. Augustine, A.D. 415: “Anyone who would say that infants who pass from this life without participation in the Sacrament (Baptism) shall be made alive in Christ truly goes counter to the preaching of the Apostle and condemns the whole Church, where there is great haste in baptizing infants because it is believed without doubt that there is no other way at all in which they can be made alive in Christ.”

St. Augustine says that those who say that infants who die without Baptism will be saved not only act contrary to the Apostolic Tradition, but condemns the whole Church. He says that there is no other way for an infant to be "made alive in Christ" other than Baptism. Pope St. Innocent expressed the teaching of tradition on this matter, against the Pelagian heretics:

Pope St. Innocent, 414 A.D.: “But that which Your Fraternity asserts the Pelagians preach, that even without the grace of Baptism infants are able to be endowed with the rewards of eternal life, is quite idiotic… But those who defend this for them without rebirth seem to me to want to quash Baptism itself, when they preach that infants already have what is believed to be conferred on them only through Baptism.”
It must be remembered that it was Jesus Christ who laid down the requirement that all men, including infants, must be baptized for salvation: “Unless a man is born again of water and the Holy Ghost he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God” (John 3:5), and the Councils express this doctrine most vividly. The Church thus teaches that unbaptized infants cannot go to heaven, and that there is no middle place for them, and that all in original sin go to Hell, but to be punished with different punishments, this is the teaching of the Church from which no one can deviate and keep his Catholic name, for this is what has been declared infallibly by the vicar of Christ on earth as the infallible truth. The above is basically Limbo by definition, which is the belief that unbaptized infants do not go to heaven, and do not go to a middle place, but that they go to Hell, and are punished differently from those with actual mortal sin by suffering the separation from God soley as a result of their original sin; aside from the definition of the non suffering of the fires of Hell but simply the separation from God and the beatific vision this is defined dogma.

So whether the Vatican likes it or not, Baptism is a requirement for salvation to all. And it is significant to note that Catholic doctrine is unchangeable, and that there is more of a likely hood that the sun could orbit Pluto than that Catholic doctrine be altered, as eternal truths from God do not change, no matter how many declarations are issued from the Vatican.

It must also be noted that the Vatican has also stated that Hell, Heaven, and Purgatory are not real places, and now that Limbo is not the fate of unbaptized infants. And this is coming from people who say that false religions are wonderful and enlightening and that Jesus might possibly not be Messiah prophesiesed in the Old Testatment. They have said that the Primacy of St. Peter is not dogmatic but simply a tradition and that the Jews' interpretation of scripture is valid etc. They are trying to eradicate Catholic dogma and replace it with the false notions produced by the Vatican assembly and the works of anti-papa. The post Vatican II religion is bit by bit attempting to overturn all of the traditions given by Christ and the apostles and dogmatically taught by the Catholic Church. They are deceiving Catholics into blindly following the errors of their new religion divorced from the Catholic religion, which is the bride of Christ.

A Prophetic Vision

Pope Leo XIII’s Original Prayer to St. Michael

On September 25, 1888, following his morning Mass, Pope Leo XIII became traumatized to the point that he collapsed. Those in attendance thought that he was dead.
After coming to consciousness, the pope described a frightful conversation that he had heard coming from near the tabernacle. The conversation consisted of two voices – voices which Pope Leo XIII clearly understood to be the voices of Jesus Christ and the Devil. The Devil boasted that he could destroy the Church, if he were granted 75 years to carry out his plan (or 100 years, according to some accounts). The Devil also asked permission for “a greater influence over those who will give themselves to my service.” To the Devil’s requests, Our Lord reportedly replied: “you will be given the time and the power.”

Shaken deeply by what he had heard, Pope Leo XIII composed the following original Prayer to St. Michael and ordered it to be recited after all Low Masses as a protection for the Church against the attacks from Hell. What follows is the original prayer:

O Glorious Archangel St. Michael, Prince of the heavenly host, be our defense in the terrible warfare which we carry on against principalities and Powers, against the rulers of this world of darkness, spirits of evil. Come to the aid of man, whom God created immortal, made in his own image and likeness, and redeemed at a great price from the tyranny of the devil.
Fight this day the battle of the Lord, together with the holy angels, as already thou hast fought the leader of the proud angels, Lucifer, and his apostate host, who were powerless to resist thee, nor was there place for them any longer in Heaven. That cruel, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil or Satan, who seduces thewhole world, was cast into the abyss with his angels.
Behold, this primeval enemy and slayer of men has taken courage. Transformed into an angel of light, he wanders about with all the multitude of wicked spirits, invading the earth in order to blot out the name of God and of his Christ, to seize upon, slay and cast into eternal perdition souls destined for the crown of eternal glory. This wicked dragon pours out, as a most impure flood, the venom of his malice on men of depraved mind and corrupt heart, the spirit of lying, of impiety, of blasphemy, and the pestilent breath of impurity, and of every vice and iniquity.
These most crafty enemies have filled and inebriated with gall and bitterness the Church, the spouse of the immaculate Lamb, and have laid impious hands on her most sacred possessions.
In the Holy Place itself, where has been set up the See of the most holy Peter and the Chair of Truth for the light of the world, they have raised the throne of their abominable impiety, with the iniquitous design that when the Pastor has been struck, the sheep may be scattered.

Arise then, O invincible Prince, bring help against the attacks of the lost spirits to the people of God, and give them the victory. They venerate thee as their protector and Patron; in thee holy Church glories as her defense against the malicious power of hell; to thee has God entrusted the souls of men to be established in heavenly beatitude. Oh, pray to the God of peace that He may put Satan under our feet, so far conquered that he may no longer be able to hold men in captivity and harm the Church. Offer our prayers in the sight of the Most High, so that they may quickly conciliate the mercies of the Lord; and beating down the dragon, the ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, do thou again make him captive in the abyss, that he may no longer seduce the nations. Amen.
Behold the Cross of the Lord; be scattered ye hostile powers.
The Lion of the tribe of Judah has conquered, the root of David.
Let thy mercies be upon us, O Lord.
As we have hoped in thee.
O Lord, hear my prayer.
And let my cry come unto thee.
Let us pray.
O God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, we call upon thy holy name, and as suppliants we implore thy clemency, that by the intercession of Mary, ever Virgin immaculate and our Mother, and of the glorious Archangel St. Michael, thou wouldst deign to help us against Satan and all other unclean spirits, who wander about the world for the injury of the human race and the ruin of souls. Amen.

In 1934, Pope Leo’s prophetic prayer (given above) was altered, the significant phrase referring to the apostasy in Rome, where the Holy Place is situated, was deleted, and the use of Leo XIII’s original Prayer to St. Michael following each Low Mass was replaced with a new concoction, the popular abbreviated Prayer to St. Michael, which goes as follows:
“St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil; may God rebuke him, we humbly pray; and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host, by the power of God, thrust into hell Satan and all evil spirits who wander through the world for the ruin of souls. Amen.”

Not that there is anything wrong with this prayer to St. Michael, it is very effective and salutary, but that it is not the original prayer to St. Michael initially composed byHis Holiness Leo XIII and is not the prayer that he ordered to be recited at the close of every Low Mass. This prayer quoted here was substituted in the place of the original, in order that the faithful ignorant of the amazing content of the original prayer described above.

About VITW: Who we are

The Catholic Church is the one true Church founded by Jesus Christ upon St. Peter (Mt. 16:18-20;Jn. 21:15-17). Since the Second Vatican Council of the radical 1960's, many things have changed in the Roman Catholic Church, often for the worse, under the guise of "modernity". This spirit of change ushered in new theologies, sacraments, practices and disciplines. As a result, much of the traditional practices and traditional Catholic articles of faith are being ignored or simply trashed as being antiquated. Dedicated to the preservation of the Traditional Catholic faith and disciplines, A Voice Crying in the Wilderness was founded to pontificate on and document the happenings within the Catholic Church, as well as a soapbox for the publication of reviews and commentaries from a Traditionalist perspective.

Who Are We?

Leo A Standish - Traditionalist Catholic of five years, conservative political activist, and Southern Agrarian Distributist, Leo is the founder and Chief editor of "A Voice Crying in the Wilderness", "The Return to Christendom", and a contributing editor of "The New Distributist League".

Ryan Grant, AKA "Athanasius": Graduate of Steubenville with B.A. in Philosophy and Theology, Ryan Grant is a lay theologian, author of Athanasius Contra Mundum, and contributing editor to "The Rad Trad Review, The New Distributist League, and Voice in the Wilderness, his biography can be found here.