by T. Stanfill Benns | Jan 27, 2021 | New Blog
+St. Peter Nolasco+
“Our Lady of Mercy, ransom the captives, deliver us from all sin and from the bondage of the evil one!”
In these present times, it is difficult to know what exactly to say or do and especially, what to believe regarding the legitimacy of the rulers of this country. There are many false portrayals of events circulating, many individuals and groups who are beginning to reveal, by the scenarios they are promoting, exactly who they are and where they are trying to lead even sincere Catholics. It is a time of diabolical confusion and a prelude to the great dangers now being introduced as this country slides further and further into the Socialist/Communist abyss. Yet Socialism and Communism are only the outer layer of the onion peel, for closer to the core is found the true source of these evils as we were warned by the Roman Pontiffs long ago. These twin evils are the engines of the Secret Societies, used to enslave the masses by those operating at the highest levels of the Illuminati. This can be seen by studying the Masonic pyramid (see https://www.betrayedcatholics.com/articles/a-catholics-course-of-study/traditionalist-heresies-and-errors/papal-teaching-on-church-and-state/the-amazing-secret-behind-freemasonrys-triumph/) and thoughtfully considering all the organizations that lead to Masonry’s triumph.
Many of those among the Traditionalists believe they will see the victory of a holy king and holy pope at this time, but this would be possible only through the working of miracles. Yet the reign of such a king may have been forfeited, and with it the reign of the Holy Pope he was intended to defend. Karl von Habsburg became the emperor of Austria following the assassination of his uncle, Archduke Franz Ferdinand, who cast the imperial veto during Pope St. Pius X’s election to prevent the election of Cardinal Mariano Rampolla. JP 2 created Habsburg a beatus, but this is no black mark on his holy life and his efforts to save Christendom. Was he working in league with the Angelic Pastor, the last Pope to be declared a Saint? Pope St. Pius X died in 1914 and Habsburg in 1922 at the age of 31. Both fought the forces of Modernism. Before his death, Pope St. Pius X supposedly told a Habsburg family member that Karl Habsburg, not his uncle Archduke Ferdinand, would be the next emperor, a man “sent from Heaven.” He may have made this statement after being informed by the Belgium seeress, Berthe Petit, that the Archduke would be assassinated. But neither this sainted pontiff nor Emperor Karl would live to fulfill the prophecy so many saintly seers predicted.
Perhaps, had von Habsburg lived into his later years, he would have been the Great Monarch who preserved Hungary from Communism (Karl also was Emperor of Hungary), rescued Cardinal Mindszenty and blew the whistle on the 1958 election as his uncle had done before him in 1903. But it was not to be. Our Lady appeared at Fatima in 1917, just five years before his death. Already the die had been cast and the world was entering the final phase of its downward spiral into Godlessness.
Certain biblical commentators agree that what has come to be known as “the peace of Fatima” will be granted to the Church. Long before Fatima occurred, saints, holy people, and theologians predicted a period of peace as well; and the popes have assured us of Our Lady’s victory, which implies peace. But one question remains unanswered: Our Lady predicated her promise on whether enough Catholics offered sacrifices, prayed the Rosary, and did penance. Can we trust the opinion of those writers who pretend that this promise was absolute rather than contingent upon the devotion manifested by the faithful? Not given what we know today regarding their orthodoxy. So this being the case, could Our Lord simply come suddenly to judge the world without first granting it peace? Given the extent of evil today, the world does not deserve to see the Church restored. While it does seem contrary to all the popes have taught concerning Mary’s triumph and the future of the Church to expect the Second Coming minus this peace, we cannot speculate upon God’s plans for His Church or think we completely understand what private prophecy is telling us.
It is true that we may have forfeited such a restoration by our wickedness. But as Rev. E. S. Berry said in his The Apocalypse of St. John: “Can we admit that a world steeped in paganism and torn with schism and heresy is the only result of Christ’s death on the Cross?” Berry then concludes it better reflects Christ’s glory and the perpetuity of His Church that She be restored rather than have it appear that the Church no longer existed when the world came to an end. As true as this may seem, the Church teaches nothing on this matter; in fact She is notably silent. This is because the secret of the Latter Days is contained in the little sealed book described in Apoc. 10; this could well be the Fatima secret never revealed. We were not meant to know God’s plans regarding us in these times until they slowly unfold. God’s thoughts are not our thoughts and His ways are not our ways. What seems reasonable to us in way of an outcome may not be God’s intention at all. We search the Scriptures and private prophecies, some by the Saints, for answers because nothing, or at least very little, is certain about these times.
One seer out of all the many, however, seems to have given us a better idea of what would happen to the Church, although her predictions sometimes seem to contradict each other. That seer is Marie-Julie Jahenny, the Breton (Nantes, France) mystic and victim soul who was imprinted with an impressive array of the various stigmatas. She was born in 1850 and died in 1941. A survey of the bulk of her prognostications regarding the Church in these times shows that she correctly predicted the two World Wars, Kulturkampf in Germany, and many other events. In 1881 she correctly described in detail the death of Melanie Calvat, the La Salette seeress, who died some 23 years later. Marie-Julie took the clergy to task for failing to spread La Salette, accusing them of actually prohibiting the Secret’s distribution and undermining its urgent warnings, especially where the clergy was concerned. She announced that “a distinct justice” is reserved for those obstructing Our Lady’s messages.
I choose to quote from her works here because in retrospect her prophecies have not received the attention in Traditionalist circles that, for example, those of Anna Catherine Emmerich or other holy people have received. And yet she is closest to our times and has been clearer and more accurate in her predictions than many others. Certainly divine revelation and papal teaching must always override anything in way of private revelations, and private revelations must always be taken with a grain of salt. Other writers may prefer not to quote Marie-Julie because she details at length the three days’ darkness which many now question as an actual event, some believing it refers only spiritually and not actually to the eclipse of the Church in these times. There also is the problem of conflicting revelations, but these may be explained by the fact, as one commentator points out, that Marie-Julie’s ecstasies were written down by several different people, at different times.
Therefore, the discrepancies can be attributed to incorrect transmission due to inadvertence, improper understanding of what was said or intended, actual misrendering of the message in places where it seemed to be too harsh, or did not agree with the understanding of the one recording the ecstasy, or other human errors. And certainly there is always the possibility that one or more of these transcribers were secret “send ins” who deliberately created doubt by their accounts, although this seems unlikely in this particular case. Such may have been the case, however, with one of those recording Anna Catherine Emmerich’s ecstasies, and this fact is even documented by an article in the American Ecclesiastical Review. Another issue is Marie-Julie’s predominant references in her ecstasies to the Great Monarch, which may have been prompted by a purely political (Monarchist) bias, one blemished by its own dangerous ties to secret societies, (unknown to the seer). All this remains to be seen, however, and only time can tell if it is simply a political preference embellished with other medieval era prophecies or has some basis in fact.
A caution here: a more recent “interpretation” of Marie Julie’s prophecies rules out any possibility the Papal See could currently be vacant, or has been vacant for many years, by referring to specific predictions and their timeline. This is to ignore the dogmatic teaching of the Church and give credence instead to a private revelation. These revelations can only confirm what is already known as truths taught by the Church; they cannot be used as a tool to gauge what will happen in the future or what has happened in the past. It is the duty of those studying the faith to first determine what the Church teaches regarding any given subject before taking statements made in any private revelation as valid. This is why we are free to believe them or not believe them, because Catholics must believe only what can be demonstrated as those things we are bound by the Church to believe.
We can take those things predicted by Marie-Julie that we now know to be true as proof of her credibility, and leave other things, such as the three days darkness and Great Monarch, aside for the time being. One thing we do know: nothing in our current time period can be ruled out as too fantastical or too radical, given what we already know and have seen. The three days could easily be manipulated by those New Agers plotting to drastically reduce the population on earth, something God may allow to happen. But the results — that the good, not the bad, would survive — would be totally unintended by the planners. And while the revival of a monarchy in this time of nothing but democracies throughout the world may seem like a longshot, it is the model the Church prefers and on which She is built. Listed below is a summary of some of Marie-Julie’s more pertinent prophecies, taken from various sources.
– More than once, the seer pronounces “You have been warned!”
– “It must be that this reign of sin ends. Never has the earth and the world been in a similar condition. It must end, (sin and evil) or every soul will be lost!”
– Her beloved confessor, Mgr. Fournier, appeared to her after his death and announced: “Sorrow will extinguish the Church for a certain time and that time is written in Heaven.” Marie- Julie says: “There will be a complete and perfect overthrow of everything… All Church work will stop. There will be complete destruction and death.” The Church will exist “only as a structural organization,” but She will “continue in the Catacombs.” Jesus told her He would “carry away the Church with all her walls and ornaments.”
– Regarding the false Vatican 2 church, she prophesied that Church law would be violated by both priests and the people who follow them. Most priests and bishops will defect from the faith and the number of the faithful will be “very small… Ministers of God will be the first to apostatize.” In the 1880s Jesus told her: “Disciples not of my Gospel are now working hard to remake according to their ideas and under influence of the enemy of souls a mass that contains words odious in my sight… Religion will remain only in “the lone souls of a few who will be harassed and persecuted.” There will be a “new clergy” and “new mass… new preachers of new sacraments, new baptisms new confraternities… There will not remain any vestige of the Holy Sacrifice.” St. Michael told her Satan would have possession of everything and “all goodness, faith and religion will be buried in the tomb. So why have so few read and taken note of these words written so long go?
Next, we include as whole pages her later words to the faithful, taken from the Marquis de la Franquerie’s Marie-Julie Jahenny, the Breton Stigmatist https://archive.org/details/PropheciesOfMarieJulieJahenny/page/n5/mode/2up):
St. John of the Cross told Marie-Julie: “It is a sure sign that God loves us when He makes us suffer on earth. He who does not suffer, is not the true friend of God. The Lord admits us (into) His grace; thank him. Remember that when we feel the pains of life, we experience His grace. When the Lord begins a work in which He wants His glory to break forth, he surrounds it first with persecutions, the cross, neglect, all kinds of penalties. This is the real charm of the Finger of God. It is necessary that one who is in the friendship of the Lord be tested, that everything in his soul is purified.”
“Under the fury of the storm, what will you do? Wait, pray and do what God wants. Love God with all our heart, faithfully serve God, serve him through the obscurities that are in us, serve despite the darkness where God leaves us and where we need to walk, serve Him all the same. Even when the light of your soul is absolutely extinguished, do not lose heart, go through all the dangers, face the dangers and God will fill you with His grace and His comfort. Who can make us happy on earth, except the peace of God that lives within us, working in us, that prays in us? Without this peace, man becomes like one damned, he runs and precipitates himself into the first gulf that he meets, because it is the devastation inflicted within him by his unregulated passions. Yet this is what happens in many hearts.”
Marie-Julie also was told in her ecstasies: “To keep peace, there is one thing to do, it is to say what God wants, it is to obey the Will of God, it is nothing that can be found in the human creature. It is to be found in God, since He is the Treasure of all… Pray for the Church threatened by a conspiracy hatched by a horrible jealousy of perverted minds banded together to overthrow it. The storm is terrible, but the Church will remain infallible and its walls shall not be shaken. But there will be martyrs … Pray for the Church and ask God for the return of a lost family, a people corrupted, a degraded society. All are our brothers in the Lord. They are souls redeemed at the price of His Blood. Prayer is the only remedy.”
To this can be added nothing more. She has said it all, and it seems that now is the time she foretold and her remedies are those that may help us to endure what lies ahead. Catholic prophecy as a whole is insistent that the only one who can save us from this terrible chastisement is Our Lord Himself, working through His Blessed Mother. Man must do God’s will and obey His law, and God will do the rest. As Marie-Julie said, “When everything seems lost, then will be the time of victory.”
by T. Stanfill Benns | Jan 15, 2021 | Blog
+ St. Paul, First Hermit+
As the spiral downward inexorably continues, those now belatedly understanding where all this is heading are beginning to panic. In the face of the inescapable they are forgetting that Holy Scripture encourages us to avoid this very reaction and to remain calm and trust in God; to distrust the false Christs and prophets, political and clerical alike, and to refuse to give in to the terror they are attempting to instill in us. In the process even Catholics who should know better have forgotten how we are to measure and interpret these times and the traps we must avoiding order to assure our eternal salvation.
One of these traps is the tendency to assign to passages of the Apocalypse an interpretation that is not seated in the spiritual realm but is more suggestive, instead, of the literal opinion of that book common to Protestants. Rev. Hugh Pope, O.P., S.T.M, D.S.S.cr, (a one-time professor of New Testament exegesis at the Collegio Angelico in Rome) made some very astute observations on the various methods used by commentators to interpret the Apocalypse. In his The Catholic Student’s Aids to the Bible, Vol. 5, he writes:
“The Apocalypse must be judged from the standpoint of prophecy…The interpretation, then, of the Apocalypse must be governed by the rules which hold good in the interpretation of all prophecy. For the original hearers…of the prophecies of Isaias or Jeremias, only one thing was certain, namely that, being divinely inspired prophecies, the things foretold would infallibly come to pass… Since, then, the ultimate goal of the Apocalypse is the last things, full light will not be thrown on this prophetic book till those last things have received their ultimate fulfillment.” Pope explained that the attitudes of commentators “has led to much harmful interpretation of the Apocalypse.” And indeed it has, even among Catholic commentators. Rev. R. Gerald Culleton says much the same: “All true prophecy is from God, for His glory and the sake of the ‘elect.’ As it becomes fulfilled it establishes its own divine origin and the reliability of the documents which convey it,” (The Reign of Antichrist, 1951). And nearly all Catholic commentators agree that the Apocalypse is to be taken in the spiritual, not the literal sense. The literal sense is not entirely excluded, but the spiritual sense must be primary. As Pope Leo XIII cautions in Providentissimus Deus:
“The sacred writings are wrapped in a certain religious obscurity and no one can enter into their interior without a guide.” He goes on to quote from the Vatican Council which reminds Catholics that “the true sense of Holy Scripture is that held by our Holy Mother the Church, whose place it is to judge the true sense and interpretation of the Scriptures… no one is permitted to interpret Holy Scripture against such sense or also against the unanimous agreement of the Fathers.” While some may believe this author has done this in holding Paul 6 as Antichrist, read the disclaimer on the opening page of this website: all written here is subject to the judgment of a future Pope, should we ever be fortunate enough to see one. I have done my best to align everything written on these topics with the comments of approved Scripture scholars and theologians, also any available papal documents. We are given a certain leeway in these times because we have no true pontiff or hierarchy to appeal to.
Can we deny that apocalyptic prophecy has been fulfilled in our day? Many do; the only thing we are saying here is that wherever we observe that several approved Church authors have opined on a Scriptural passage, unless it is directly contradicted by what we see before us, we must follow their opinions rather than holding our own as Protestants are wont to do. I will give an example of one such opinion circulating on the Internet which some true Catholics now hold. It reads like this: The current COVID-19 vaccines, because at least some of them have been developed using aborted fetal material, are the mark of the beast. Now of course if Catholics know or even suspect certain vaccines have been developed using aborted fetal material, they are bound not to receive them on moral grounds, and there is a basis for this supposition. On the other hand, if it could be shown to be relatively certain that other vaccines were not developed in this manner and there is a serious reason for receiving one, there would be no sin in doing so.
The problem with the vaccine from aborted tissue and the claim that it is the mark of the beast is that many now living today as Catholics probably received vaccines decades ago, either as young adults or children, that already were contaminated with fetal tissue (see https://www.chop.edu/centers-programs/vaccine-education-center/vaccine-ingredients/fetal-tissues). At that time no one knew of this contamination. So if this line of thinking is followed and such a vaccination is the mark, those receiving it would merit eternal damnation. But how could such people merit damnation if they did not know the vaccine contained fetal tissue? Of course if one received a vaccination knowing the tissue was there and intending to do so for material and social gain, then that would merit damnation as a serious sin unless they truly repented and made amendment. And while the suspect vaccines are certainly one of many tools in the arsenal maintained by those operating under Antichrist’s remaining system, and so indirectly are a product of that system, they cannot be said to correspond with the spiritual meaning of the mark of the beast.
The commentators tell us the true nature of the mark, although all do not comment on its actual components or meaning. Fr. E. S. Berry (The Apocalypse of St. John) and H. B. Kramer (The Book of Destiny) indicate the mark is a hellish form of Baptism and intimate the mark on the hand could be false Holy Orders. Fathers Berry, Arminjon (The End of the Present World and Mysteries of the Future Life), Huchede (History of Antichrist) also Abp. Sheen describe an entire counterfeit church or religion in opposition to the true Church, which means that church would have its own rites. Catholics receive Baptism on their foreheads and most Catholics know that during the ordination ceremony, priests are anointed on their hands (thumbs and index fingers) which touch the Sacred Host, giving the power to transform the bread and wine into Christ’s Body and Blood. But it is the bishops who are the primary pastors of the Church, not the priests, and the only valid episcopal rite of the Church below shows what relevance this reference to hands and forehead really holds regarding apostolic succession.
Laying on of the Hands
“Then the Consecrator and the assistant bishops (all wearing mitres) touch with both hands the head of the one to be consecrated (who is still kneeling) saying: “Receive the Holy Ghost.” (In the NO rite, this action is done in silence.) He makes the Sign of the Cross on the cloth crown of the mitre, and then anoints the rest of the crown while saying: “May thy head be anointed and consecrated by heavenly benediction in the pontifical order. “May thy head be anointed and consecrated by heavenly benediction in the pontifical order. And making with his right hand, the sign of the cross three times over the head of the Elect, he says:
“In the name of the + Father, and of the + Son, and of the Holy + Ghost. R. Amen. V. Peace be with thee. R. And with thy spirit.” [From the above wording it is clear that the Bishop-elect’s head is actually being anointed now and that the Consecrator is actually blessing him in this moment using the Pontifical blessing of a bishop.]
“While Ps. 132 is being sung, the Bishop-elect has one long strip of cloth placed on his neck. The Consecrator sits down and wearing his mitre anoints the hands of the Bishop-elect who is kneeling before the Consecrator. The hands are anointed in the form of a cross. The Consecrator dips his thumb in the oil and draws two lines from the thumb of the right hand to the
index finger of the left hand and from the thumb of the left hand to the index finger of the right hand. (See https://www.hrcac.org.uk/Comparison-of-Old-and-New-Consecration-Rites-2.pdf).
All of the above must be taken in the spiritual sense in which it is intended. The reference to this mark of the beast in Apocalypse is spiritual. The sea beast in Apocalypse Chap. 13 institutes new sacraments to “replace” the old. This is the Man of Sin, Antichrist in person. There is nothing that says that the successors of Antichrist might not also promote some identification sign that must be received on the hand or forehead that would mark citizens in a way that could determine whether they buy or sell, but this is only a material extenuation of the spiritual reality. Christ teaches us in Matthew 10:28: “And fear ye not them that kill the body, and are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him that can destroy both soul and body in hell.” We should fear only that which will certainly kill our souls — the falsification of the Church established by Christ and the Sacraments He instituted. The political remnants of Antichrist’s system can definitely kill our bodies, but we cannot lose sight of the true spiritual meaning of this mark and hope to save our souls. It is the key to everything we must believe and all we must do to persevere unto the end.
Antichrist did not come to destroy political empires, although in the course of his mission these also were destroyed. His sole target was the Church. Rome was the location of his throne and his successors yet rule there to carry out his agenda. This is the Lawless One and his system; there are two entities. Spiritual meanings cannot propose new doctrine, only illuminate doctrines already existing. Everyone knows that the pope was considered by the world to be the enemy of everything Protestant, pagan and especially Masonic. That Satan, and ultimately his “son,” Antichrist, would consider him his foremost enemy and covet his throne has been demonstrated time and time again throughout history, beginning with Simon Magus and antipopes classified by the Church as antichrists throughout history. That in consequence he would set out to also destroy any possibility that the papacy could revive itself is only a given. Hence we have the NO sacraments and the mark.
Much more could be said on this topic, and God willing, will be said in the weeks to come. For those who seek them out, the texts of Holy Scripture comfort God’s people consumed with fear in these times. Christ has never abandoned us; He is with us now more surely than ever before. No one knows what might happen over the next several days, weeks or months, but we all should pray for each other, put our spiritual affairs in order and thank God for the many blessings He has granted us in being able to live in this country and freely practice our faith all these years. Pray, watch, and make reparation for the many evils that have been perpetrated under the guise of good. Place your trust in Jesus’ Sacred Heart alone.
by T. Stanfill Benns | Jan 3, 2021 | Blog
+The Most Holy Name of Jesus+
The following presidential document was forwarded to me by a reader, and while the feast day of the saint the proclamation honors has passed, the sentiments in the proclamation below speak for the man who for the past four years has been the victim of countless ad hominem attacks. Donald Trump is no saint and has never pretended to be. But he loves his country and the document below is something all Catholics should consider well.
Proclamation on the 850th Anniversary of the Martyrdom of Saint Thomas Becket
Today is the 850th anniversary of the martyrdom of Saint Thomas Becket on December 29, 1170. Thomas Becket was a statesman, a scholar, a chancellor, a priest, an archbishop, and a lion of religious liberty.
Before the Magna Carta was drafted, before the right to free exercise of religion was enshrined as America’s first freedom in our glorious Constitution, Thomas gave his life so that, as he said, “the Church will attain liberty and peace.”
The son of a London sheriff and once described as “a low‑born clerk” by the King who had him killed, Thomas Becket rose to become the leader of the church in England. When the crown attempted to encroach upon the affairs of the house of God through the Constitutions of Clarendon, Thomas refused to sign the offending document. When the furious King Henry II threatened to hold him in contempt of royal authority and questioned why this “poor and humble” priest would dare defy him, Archbishop Becket responded “God is the supreme ruler, above Kings” and “we ought to obey God rather than men.”
Because Thomas would not assent to rendering the church subservient to the state, he was forced to forfeit all his property and flee his own country. Years later, after the intervention of the Pope, Becket was allowed to return — and continued to resist the King’s oppressive interferences into the life of the church. Finally, the King had enough of Thomas Becket’s stalwart defense of religious faith and reportedly exclaimed in consternation: “Will no one rid me of this meddlesome priest?”
The King’s knights responded and rode to Canterbury Cathedral to deliver Thomas Becket an ultimatum: give in to the King’s demands or die. Thomas’s reply echoes around the world and across the ages. His last words on this earth were these: “For the name of Jesus and the protection of the Church, I am ready to embrace death.” Dressed in holy robes, Thomas was cut down where he stood inside the walls of his own church.
Thomas Becket’s martyrdom changed the course of history. It eventually brought about numerous constitutional limitations on the power of the state over the Church across the West. In England, Becket’s murder led to the Magna Carta’s declaration 45 years later that: “[T]he English church shall be free, and shall have its rights undiminished and its liberties unimpaired.”
When the Archbishop refused to allow the King to interfere in the affairs of the Church, Thomas Becket stood at the intersection of church and state. That stand, after centuries of state-sponsored religious oppression and religious wars throughout Europe, eventually led to the establishment of religious liberty in the New World. It is because of great men like Thomas Becket that the first American President George Washington could proclaim more than 600 years later that, in the United States, “All possess alike liberty of conscience and immunities of citizenship” and that “it is now no more that toleration is spoken of, as if it was by the indulgence of one class of people, that another enjoyed the exercise of their inherent natural rights.”
Thomas Becket’s death serves as a powerful and timeless reminder to every American that our freedom from religious persecution is not a mere luxury or accident of history, but rather an essential element of our liberty. It is our priceless treasure and inheritance. And it was bought with the blood of martyrs.
As Americans, we were first united by our belief that “rebellion to tyrants is obedience to God” and that defending liberty is more important than life itself. If we are to continue to be the land of the free, no government official, no governor, no bureaucrat, no judge, and no legislator must be allowed to decree what is orthodox in matters of religion or to require religious believers to violate their consciences. No right is more fundamental to a peaceful, prosperous, and virtuous society than the right to follow one’s religious convictions. As I declared in Krasiński Square in Warsaw, Poland on July 6, 2017, the people of America and the people of the world still cry out: “We want God.”
On this day, we celebrate and revere Thomas Becket’s courageous stand for religious liberty and we reaffirm our call to end religious persecution worldwide. In my historic address to the United Nations last year, I made clear that America stands with believers in every country who ask only for the freedom to live according to the faith that is within their own hearts. I also stated that global bureaucrats have absolutely no business attacking the sovereignty of nations that wish to protect innocent life, reflecting the belief held by the United States and many other countries that every child — born and unborn — is a sacred gift from God. Earlier this year, I signed an Executive Order to prioritize religious freedom as a core dimension of United States foreign policy. We have directed every Ambassador — and the over 13,000 United States Foreign Service officers and specialists — in more than 195 countries to promote, defend, and support religious freedom as a central pillar of American diplomacy.
We pray for religious believers everywhere who suffer persecution for their faith. We especially pray for their brave and inspiring shepherds — like Cardinal Joseph Zen of Hong Kong and Pastor Wang Yi of Chengdu — who are tireless witnesses to hope.
To honor Thomas Becket’s memory, the crimes against people of faith must stop, prisoners of conscience must be released, laws restricting freedom of religion and belief must be repealed, and the vulnerable, the defenseless, and the oppressed must be protected. The tyranny and murder that shocked the conscience of the Middle Ages must never be allowed to happen again. As long as America stands, we will always defend religious liberty.
A society without religion cannot prosper. A nation without faith cannot endure — because justice, goodness, and peace cannot prevail without the grace of God.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, DONALD J. TRUMP, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim December 29, 2020, as the 850th anniversary of the martyrdom of Saint Thomas Becket. I invite the people of the United States to observe the day in schools and churches and customary places of meeting with appropriate ceremonies in commemoration of the life and legacy of Thomas Becket.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-eighth day of December, in the year of our Lord two thousand twenty, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-fifth.
A few comments are in order here. First of all, aside from the mention of Novus Ordo Chinese bishops (who while not Catholic are still clergy being persecuted in China), this proclamation appears to be sincere and entirely orthodox. Secondly, it emphasizes the obligation of all those who truly believe in God to obey Him, and not government officials who, as happened in pagan times and even in St. Thomas Becket’s day, would order Christians to disobey God’s laws. The proclamation is delivered in respectful even reverential tones, and most importantly, it used the life of a Catholic archbishop to illustrate the necessity of placing God first if this country is to expect to live in peace and be worthy of God’s grace.
We are facing a week that will decide the fate of all Christians of every stripe in this country, and indirectly, in the entire world. Trump knows this, and he is reminding us of his commitment to defend our right as Catholics to profess our faith. I have limited knowledge of presidential proclamations, but I think it is safe to say that no modern president has made such a statement of faith in reference to the Catholic Church. He appears to be appealing to us to stand firm in the event that he loses any option to serve another term, which he may. Pray God his words will stand as a warning heeded, and not become a prophecy of future persecution of Christians under Biden’s socialist regime.