NEWS:  May 31, 2010

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Bird’s Eye View of the News

Atila Sinke Guimarães

BENEDICT IN FATIMA & THE WINTER GRASS  - The visit of Benedict XVI was perfectly timed to counter the groundswell of accusations about his cover-up of the pedophile-priests scandal. A show of popular success was indispensable to achieve this. It is difficult to say that the trip was planned for that purpose because the visit was announced in September 2009 when such accusations against Pope Ratzinger were not in the spotlight.

Catholic Crowds Fatima

The people venerating an ideal Pope different from Benedict XVI
Anyway, the visit was successful. The good Portuguese people received the Pope – or rather “their Pope” – much more than Joseph Ratzinger. Watching the videos and listening to the speakers in Portuguese, one realizes that even though the country’s Hierarchy and clergy are completely in tune with Vatican II, the people were cheering Pius XII behind the silhouette of Benedict XVI.

Thus, during those joyful days, it was forgotten that an anti-Marian and anti-Fatima Pope had suddenly been transformed into a devotee of the Holy Virgin.

Vatican experts and Portuguese Prelates managed to make people overlook that it was Fr. Joseph Ratzinger and his mentor Fr. Karl Rahner who were behind the rejection of the conciliar schema to promote Mariology. It was Card. Ratzinger who affirmed that the message of Fatima was the fruit of the children’s imagination. He also inspired the revelation in 2000 of the empty “third secret,” which, according to his words, was now "a part of the past," putting an end to the mystery of Fatima.

He maintained that the Russian Schismatics should not convert, in opposition to the words of Our Lady in Fatima. It was under Benedict’s pontificate as well that a book supposedly written by Sister Lucy II gave a new Judaic twist to the Fatima message, pointing to the killing of Jews in WWII as an important part of the revelations.

From May 11 to 14, 2010, however, all these things were forgotten, and Benedict was presented as a newly emerged but undisputable devotee of Fatima and Our Lady.

Considerable crowds were present in Lisbon and Porto to receive him and to bid him farewell. Regarding the people who went to Fatima on May 13, I believe that those 300,000 pilgrims would have traveled there to honor Our Lady regardless of whether Benedict was there or not.

By the time Pope Ratzinger left Portugal, the atmosphere around him had changed. The cold winds of the sex scandals had stopped blowing, and a winter grass – a grass sowed over the brown winter lawn – began to appear, green and beautiful. The Vatican experts in public opinion have won. But for how long?

What was the message Benedict delivered when he was in Portugal? A brief analysis follows.

A republican enthusiast

The history of Portugal tells us that for almost 800 years the country was a Monarchy, from its birth in 1139 until a republican revolution deposed King Manuel II in 1910. Today, about 30% of the Portuguese people are still reluctant to call themselves Republican; of that group around 16% define themselves as Monarchists.

Notwithstanding these statistics, as soon as he set foot on Portuguese soil, Benedict gave a speech praising the Republic. He said:

Benedict speech at Lisbon Airport

As soon as he set foot in Portugal he praised its Republic
“By separating Church and State, the Republican revolution which took place 100 years ago in Portugal opened up a new era of freedom for the Church, to which the two concordats of 1940 and 2004 would give shape, in cultural settings and ecclesial perspectives profoundly marked by rapid change.” (I am using the texts of his speeches from the Vatican English translation).

The Portuguese Monarchy was officially Catholic; the Republic is Masonic-inspired and officially anti-Catholic. Furthermore, the Republic promoted violent attacks against the Church, including the confiscation of her properties.

Why should the head of the Catholic Church praise such a regime and alienate a considerable portion of her own faithful? I will try to answer further on.

Also inexplicable is the fact that, although Portugal is 91% Catholic, in the same speech Benedict sent his regards to all religions: “To all, whatever their faith or religion, I extend a greeting in friendship.” Thus, in that short initial speech he scorned the 16% of the country’s Monarchists as well as the many anti-Republicans who number among the best children of the Church, while addressing the members of false religions (less than 9% of the population), who could not care less about what he says.

Assimilating Protestantism & Enlightenment

Still in Lisbon, Benedict addressed representatives of the world of culture on May 12. He presented today’s world as being in “conflict” between tradition and the present: Tradition as represented by Catholicism, and the present by the Enlightenment. It is a Hegelian approach with its thesis, anti-thesis, and synthesis, which he presents as being Vatican II. This is what he said about the goal of the Council and its fruit:

Benedict greets abortion leader Jose Socrates

A warm greeting for Prime Minister Jose Socrates, who proposed the abortion law
“Precisely so as to place the modern world in contact with the life-giving and perennial energies of the Gospel, the Second Vatican Council was convened. There, the Church, on the basis of a renewed awareness of the Catholic tradition, took seriously and discerned, transformed and overcame the fundamental critiques that gave rise to the modern world – the Reformation and the Enlightenment. In this way the Church herself adapted and refashioned the best of her requirements of modernity by transcending them on the one hand, and, on the other, by avoiding the errors and dead ends. The Council laid down the foundation for an authentic renewal and for a new civilization – the civilization of love – as an evangelical service to man and society.”

Benedict XVI was very clear: In the continuous clashes between the thesis and the antithesis – tradition and the present, Catholicism and the Revolution – Vatican II represents the happy Hegelian synthesis that assimilated the good aspects of each and transcended both, giving birth to a Revolutionary Church. It is this Church that will lead man along the next steps of History.

Bearing both standards – that of Catholicism and that of the Revolution – and pointing to a new goal to be reached, Benedict thus spoke to the world of culture.

With this, it becomes clear why he rejected the Monarchists. They would belong to an archaic past outside this Hegelian march toward the future. This view, needless to say, is wrong. Traditionalists and Monarchists defend the correct principles that forged the Portuguese nation. If Benedict’s march had applied in the past, Portugal would have been half-Muslim - not Catholic - after the Reconquista.

Brother Ratzinger

Anyone who reads the papal speeches in Portugal cannot but notice a new style of address. Benedict XVI never directed himself to his audiences as a Father. He invariably used the expressions “my brothers and sisters” and “my friends.” To my understanding, the title Pope is a reference to the Italian Papa, which is an affectionate term for Father. I wonder whether he is preparing to do away with the title of Pope, as he did with the designation Patriarch of the West.

Before the Council, the Popes always addressed their Catholic audiences as “our children.” When they spoke to Bishops, they would say “our venerable Brothers in the Episcopate” because the Bishops, like the Pope, have the plenitude of the power of Orders. They would never address priests, religious men and women or seminarians as “my dear brothers and sisters.”

This new style of address is, therefore, another step in the destruction of traditional papal customs.

Fatima used to promote the Universal Republic

On the esplanade in front of the Basilica of Fatima, Benedict said that “we would be mistaken to think that Fatima’s prophetic message is complete.” Further on in his short homily, he expressed the desire that as the centenary of the apparitions in 2017 approaches, Our Lady would “hasten the fulfillment of the prophecy of the triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, to the glory of the Most Holy Trinity.”

Papal Mass at Fatima

Using the Fatima message to promote universal fraternity
These words have been interpreted to mean that Benedict was re-opening the question of whether the “third secret” he revealed in 2000 was the authentic one. I believe this interpretation lacks foundation in reality. The issue he was addressing has nothing to do with the “third secret.” He considers this a closed chapter of history.

The Pope was talking about having “open hearts to universal love.” “Only with this fraternal and generous love,” he stated, “will we succeed in building the civilization of love.” He also praised the Pilgrim statues of Fatima in their effort to promote “the cause of fraternal solidarity.” This is the context of his words.

To know what he meant by “the fulfillment of the prophecy,” we should look to his homily to the Bishops delivered that same day where Benedict praised their “witness as prophets of justice and peace and defenders of the inalienable rights of the person.” To the world of culture, he also explained his understanding of prophecy, saying: “Ours is a time which calls for the best of our efforts, prophetic courage and a renewal capacity to point out new worlds to the world.” Hence, we should understand his words on prophecy according to this social meaning.

In the final Mass at Porto he defined more clearly what would be the ideal goal of the Church: “Today the Church is called to face new challenges and is ready to dialogue with different cultures and religions in the search for ways of building, along with all people of good will, the peaceful coexistence of peoples.”

Therefore, what he did was to insert the message of Our Lady of Fatima into the goal to achieve a universal union of religions and peoples – the civilization of love. This is nothing less than the achievement of a Pan-religion in the religious sphere and a One World Order in the temporal sphere. This is what he expects to be fully achieved in 2017. He used Fatima to promote this goal.

As far as I can see, those who pretend Benedict is now ready to deny his former words and is preparing to reveal another secret are just indulging in wishful thinking.


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