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News Flash: The Pope is Still Roman Catholic

September 23rd, 2011
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And lest anyone get a bit too carried away with PB XVI, we need to remember that he is still very much Roman Catholic and reflects the false and potentially damning doctrine of this church body in these remarks, on a visit to a Marian shrine, and we recall why we must, with a heavy heart and deep sorrow, continue to assert: papam ipsum verum antichristum est.

Pope Benedict: address at Etzelsbach Marian Shrine

Friday evening Pope Benedict XVI lead a congregation of hundreds in the celebration Vespers at the Wallfahrtskapelle, or Pilgrimage Chapel of the Shrine, located in the small hamlet of Etzelsbach, outside the city of Erfurt. Here are his remarks:

Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Now I am able to fulfil my wish to visit Eichsfeld, and here in Etzelsbach to thank Mary in company with you. “Here in the beloved quiet vale”, as the pilgrims’ hymn says, “under the old lime trees”, Mary gives us security and new strength. During two godless dictatorships, which sought to deprive the people of their ancestral faith, the inhabitants of Eichsfeld were in no doubt that here in this shrine at Etzelsbach an open door and a place of inner peace was to be found. The special friendship with Mary that grew from all this, is what we seek to cultivate further, not least through this evening’s Vespers of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

When Christians of all times and places turn to Mary, they are acting on the spontaneous conviction that Jesus cannot refuse his mother what she asks; and they are relying on the unshakable trust that Mary is also our mother – a mother who has experienced the greatest of all sorrows, who feels all our griefs with us and ponders in a maternal way how to overcome them. How many people down the centuries have made pilgrimages to Mary, in order to find comfort and strength before the image of the Mother of Sorrows, as here at Etzelsbach!

Let us look upon her likeness: a woman of middle age, her eyelids heavy with much weeping, gazing pensively into the distance, as if meditating in her heart upon everything that had happened. On her knees rests the lifeless body of her son, she holds him gently and lovingly, like a precious gift. We see the marks of the crucifixion on his bare flesh. The left arm of the corpse is pointing straight down. Perhaps this sculpture of the Pietà, like so many others, was originally placed above an altar. The crucified Jesus would then be pointing with his outstretched arm to what was taking place on the altar, where the holy sacrifice that he had accomplished is made present in the Eucharist.

A particular feature of the holy image of Etzelsbach is the position of Our Lord’s body. In most representations of the Pietà, the dead Jesus is lying with his head facing left, so that the observer can see the wounded side of the Crucified Lord. Here in Etzelsbach, however, the wounded side is concealed, because the body is facing the other way. It seems to me that a deep meaning lies hidden in this representation, that only becomes apparent through silent contemplation: in the Etzelsbach image, the hearts of Jesus and his mother are turned to one another; they come close to each other. They exchange their love. We know that the heart is also the seat of the most tender affection as well as the most intimate compassion. In Mary’s heart there is room for the love that her divine Son wants to bestow upon the world.

Marian devotion focuses on contemplation of the relationship between the Mother and her divine Son. The faithful constantly discover new dimensions and qualities which this mystery can help to disclose for us, for example when the image of the Immaculate Heart of Mary is seen as a symbol of her deep and unreserved loving unity with Christ. It is not self-fulfilment that truly enables people to flourish, according to the model that modern life so often proposes to us, which can easily turn into a sophisticated form of selfishness. Rather it is an attitude of self-giving directed towards the heart of Mary and hence also towards the heart of the Redeemer.

“We know that in everything God works for good with those who love him, who are called according to his purpose” (Rom 8:28), as we have just heard in the Scripture reading. With Mary, God has worked for good in everything, and he does not cease, through Mary, to cause good to spread further in the world. Looking down from the Cross, from the throne of grace and salvation, Jesus gave us his mother Mary to be our mother. At the moment of his self-offering for mankind, he makes Mary as it were the channel of the rivers of grace that flow from the Cross. At the foot of the Cross, Mary becomes our fellow traveller and protector on life’s journey. “By her motherly love she cares for her son’s sisters and brothers who still journey on earth surrounded by dangers and difficulties, until they are led into their blessed home” (Lumen Gentium, 62). Yes indeed, in life we pass through high-points and low-points, but Mary intercedes for us with her Son and conveys to us the strength of divine love.

Our trust in the powerful intercession of the Mother of God and our gratitude for the help we have repeatedly experienced impel us, as it were, to think beyond the needs of the moment. What does Mary actually want to say to us, when she rescues us from our plight? She wants to help us grasp the breadth and depth of our Christian vocation. With a mother’s tenderness, she wants to make us understand that our whole life should be a response to the love of our God, who is so rich in mercy. “Understand,” she seems to say to us, “that God, who is the source of all that is good and who never desires anything other than your true happiness, has the right to demand of you a life that yields unreservedly and joyfully to his will, striving at the same time that others may do likewise.” Where God is, there is a future. Indeed – when we allow God’s love to influence the whole of our lives, then heaven stands open. Then it is possible so to shape the present that it corresponds more and more to the Good News of our Lord Jesus Christ. Then the little things of everyday life acquire meaning, and great problems find solutions. Amen.

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Categories: Roman Catholicism
  1. September 23rd, 2011 at 19:43 | #1

    “SAY NOW SHIBBOLETH!”

    By: Paul Kretzmann

    The story from which our caption is quoted is well known. It is taken from
    the Book of Judges, chap. 12:6, where the Gileadites, who had fought against the
    Ammonites under the leadership of Jephthah, made the pronunciation of the word
    “shibboleth” a test for distinguishing the Ephraimites from the members of their
    own group. The word has therefore gained the connotation of a distinguishing
    mark, a decisive test by which people or things are placed in well-marked
    categories, especially as to their unqualified acceptance of and adherence to
    certain essential principles.

    The orthodox Lutheran Church is known the world over as the church body
    which makes a threefold motto its first and foremost shibboleth, namely:

    Sola Scriptura the inspired Word of God as the only norm of doctrine and the sole rule
    of life;

    Sola Gratia by grace alone, this being the one and only basis of salvation;

    Sola Fide: by faith alone, and not by any works or attitude on the part of man,
    faith being the activity wrought by God in the heart of man, whereby the latter is
    enabled to receive the justification earned by the propitiatory sacrifice of Jesus
    Christ. So strong is our insistence upon this threefold shibboleth that we have not
    hesitated to call the doctrine of justification the articulus stantis et cadentis
    ecclesiae, the doctrine with which the Church stands and falls, that is, upon the
    acceptance or rejection of which the very essence of the Church, its true
    existence, depends.

    But the orthodox Lutheran Church has, for more than four hundred years,
    called out “Say now shibboleth!” also with regard to another truth which is clearly
    and unmistakably based on Scripture and has, from the beginning, held the
    position of a doctrine on the part of all those who truly discerned the signs of the
    times and made the identification so definitely required by the Word of God. This
    is the truth that the pope, in his capacity as the head of the papacy, is the very
    Antichrist:

    Papam ipsum verum Antichristum esse.

    http://www.wlsessays.net/files/KretzmannShibboleth.rtf

    IXOYC

  2. Gabriel Borlean
    September 24th, 2011 at 13:27 | #2

    what a bunch of pious, full-of-imagination and Biblical loose quotes exclamations done by the Pope. What a shame for a man who calls himself theologian and Vicar of Christ, to elevate Mary to such a level … as to participate in the merits of Christ. SAD!

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