Is there still hope for the future?
If we are not completely blind we perceive the grave situation of the true Catholic Church, loyal to the revealed faith. Following the modernistic „reforms“ and „innovations“ in the counciliar church, officially since 1958, many Catholic principles and handed down theological as well as moral teachings were questioned and denied. In the official sphere today, on the practical, parochial level this means, that what is called „catholic“ has nothing at all to do with the Catholic-apostolic faith but is rather something which was formerly opposed and even solemnly condemned by the Catholic Church as false teaching.
This negative development made in the meantime so much progress and is fixed in the minds of numerous „official catholics“ that it seems - out of the human perspective - unchangeable. How can those uncompromising Catholics, following the traditions of the Church, who are a nearly unconceivable small pile, stand and fight against this giant machinery of the modernistic counciliar church with its huge power of the media, influential connections to society, the recognition of the powerful and lastly also superior financial means? How can we with our humble means do something to stop or even reverse this process of „modernisation“, liberalisation and profanation through the official „church“ which already took horrible dimensions? Additionally, we have a general loss of faith and morals in the whole society. The teaching of the gospel and the Catholic Church in regard to Christian morality mean nothing in our hemisphere. Abortion, support and glorification of homosexual practices or „just“ the brutalization of manners, to name just a few of those modernisations.
We don‘t wonder why we see sometimes some tendencies of hopelessness and depression in pious souls. We probably even ask ourselves if it still makes sense to stand up and openly and definitely take our stand against this negative development? Is it not an unnecessary waste of energy as we cannot change much anyway? Does it still make sense to openly profess and engage in the traditional faith of the Church and the genuine moral teaching of the Christian, revealed religion? Or should we rather face the sad reality and give up the hope for a overcoming of modernist heresies and the coming back of big parts of all nations to the traditional, Catholic faith? It really seems to be contrary to reason to believe that the counciliar church will give up its heresies and come back to the true faith as well as to believe that the deeply godless and liberal society will make a moral change and go back to the teaching of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Would it not be better to - seeing the present situation of influence and power - cease to struggle and accept the current situation? We will not get much but only disappointments anyway…How can one still trust in the divine providence and have hope for better times? Everywhere, nothing seems to be really good. What can we still hope for at all?
A Christian wants of course that the truth about Jesus Christ is known throughout the world and all men live according to it - that’s not a matter of discussion. Christ‘s order to his Church to convert people in order that possibly all men will be his disciples and baptized in the name of the triune God (see Mt. 28, 18-20). The Catholic Church was faithful to this order and took for centuries devoutly care of making the gospel of Christ known on all continents.
Still, men are not the moral institution which will judge us lastly, but the eternal, omnipotent and merciful God! His jurisdiction is the only deciding one which we are subject to, not to purely human majorities or a short living support of the society. Man has to stand in his consciousness in front of the tribunal of God and not in front of any human court! The Lord God called us in holy Baptism to love God with all our heart, all our soul and with all our power and to serve him alone! And when he will ask us to answer for our thinking, doing and omitting, he will surely not ask what other people thought or did in this or that matter, but if we were, recognizing his truth, ready to follow Him without compromise and to fulfil his will. Independently of how people acted around us.
Human opinions, fashions and opinions come and go, always changing. God alone is holy, only his will unchangeable and outlasting all times! That’s why we as Catholic Christians have to strive during our daily, moral struggle primarily to recognise the will of God, to deepen our knowledge of the (traditional) Catholic faith and consequently live accordingly. The contemplation of the Lord God and the holy, catholic and apostolic faith will then also help us to overcome to strong tendencies of human nature and detach us from the dependency of the opinions and judgement of other men.
If the majority of the society in which we live or at least many people in our environment have the Catholic faith and Christian values it is usually also much easier for us to profess them. But its even harder then when we experience noticeable resistance. Then we are asked to stand consciously for the truth and Christian values and not only superficially. The more hindrances we have to overcome in practising the good and the right - the more it attaches itself to us and we also learn to appreciate it more and more. The bigger, truer, purer and more intensive the love of the human heart is towards God and his word, the more can the redemptive power of divine grace work in us and free us from human fear and the attraction of the opinion of the masses! We want to concentrate on the recognition and fulfilment of the divine will. Not the opinion of human majorities will lastly count for us, but the holy will of God who spoke to us in His Only Begotten Son Jesus Christ!
Yes, it sometimes seems to be - on a purely human level - to be tactically more clever not to speak about the truth very clearly or to keep silence on some issues. Even with so called „conservatives“ and „traditionalists“ there are sad examples of false comprises. Some refrain to tell certain important details of the recognized truth or consciously don’t speak about the consequences in order e.g. not to „annoy“ their followers and have statistical and financial disadvantages. Others just want to be part of a bigger or more renown organisation to be in peace with their environment. Still others sense that there is something wrong with their current opinions concerning the Catholic doctrine and Church but they don’t think more about it or don’t ask the necessary questions to make the facts clearly visible.
With God neither business efficiency nor cleverness counts, but the honest and upright will, to follow His will loyally and consciously. And only the one who is ready to follow the will of God consequently and without compromises, to live in unbreakable loyalty to the teaching of the Catholic Church, founded by Him, can rejoice in His grace and taste the deep peace of God!
Yes, the influence of unchristian or anti-Catholic forces in the current politics and society are very big. According to purely human consideration, a single person or small group can practically do nothing - one feels simply helpless. Unfortunately, we have to fear that the loss of a healthy faith and the disappearing of authentic Christian moral is increasing rather then decreasing - including the disastrous effects for the spiritual health and the moral well being of big parts of the population! Seen like this, there is really not much or no hope for the future. Who dares to believe that he can break the strong disbelief of modernism and bring the masses back to the Catholic faith with his humble work? And who honestly believes to be himself able to overcome the massive connections of the „counciliar church“ with the deeply liberal and explicitly anti-Catholic forces of this world and can bring considerable better times for the true Catholic Church? Doesn’t everything speak for stop everything and give up?
This living example of disciples did not only bring courage to other Christians to stand themselves loyal to Christ and the unchanged Catholic teaching, but also brought respect and even admiration in the ranks of the enemies and persecutors. And in this manner - namely with active help and cooperation - the seed of the gospel was further spread and sowed into the hearts of men! The blood and fearlessness of the martyrs and the courage and steadiness of the confessors became the foundation on which future generations can grow and raise their offspring in the faith!
Yes, God tries His disciples according to His unfathomable providence in the present very much and lets them drink the whole chalice of suffering. He sometimes tries us heavily to examine us closely. Is is only natural to acknowledge ones suffering under such a heavy cross and to look forward towards better times.
Even if we don’t believe to have great success in the sense of the world, we still trust in the words of Christ who said, that every good deed has an infinite value in the eyes of God, as long as they are done honestly and in true love (see. Mt 10,42). We bring him all our prayers, sorrows and sighs and hope confidently that He will leave no single one unnoticed. We also bring all our bigger sacrifices and smaller privations into His hand, which we suffer willingly for the defence of our holy Catholic faith and the traditional Holy Mass. We humbly offer him up all hostilities and disadvantages which arise through our legitimate and necessary, objective criticism of the sad situation in the „counciliar church“ and the God-forgetting society.
Fr. Eugen Rissling