Divorce and contraception.
Before she died, Our Lady of Fatima told St. Jacinta, "Many marriages are not good; they do not please Our Lord and are not of God." That was nearly 100 years ago in Portugal. If it was that bad then, what is the state of marriage today?
About a year ago, Pope Francis stated, “the great majority of our sacramental marriages are null...” The statement was revised for the transcript, perhaps due to complaints from conservatives. With the Holy Father's approval of course, his statement was edited to read, “a portion of our sacramental marriages are null.” A 'portion' - or perhaps 'many' as Our Lady said in 1917. (I've written about all of this before here.)
Perhaps that explains why divorce has become so pervasive, and easy - many marriages were bad to begin with. You think? It used to be that Catholics seeking a civil divorce had to get permission from the local ordinary. That was before no-fault divorce. Divorce itself was discouraged, except for very grave situations, like extreme abuse, abandonment, and so on. That said, St. Rita of Cascia, whose feast we celebrate today, was often hailed as a wife and mother who endured abuse and remained married, and presented to Catholics as a spouse who remained faithful despite a difficult marriage. (The stories of her abuse may be exaggerated.)
Cardinal Caffarra focused upon two grave sins against the family, abortion and homosexual relationships as equal to marriage. He skips what I've always referred to as the 'original sins' of our time: artificial contraception and no-fault divorce - the great sexual equalizers, if you will. Roman Catholics embraced both, and subsequently many accepted, if not approved, cohabiting couples and gay couples as equal to married spouses, and likewise approved childlessness, as well as the right for women to make their own decisions 'reproductive health'.
Cardinal Caffarra's two points:
*The first development is the transformation of a crime [termed by Vatican Council II nefandum crimen], abortion, into a right. Note well. I am not speaking of abortion as an act perpetrated by one person. I am speaking of the broader legitimation which can be perpetrated by a judicial system in a single act: to subsume it into the category of the subjective right, which is an ethical category. This signifies calling what is good, evil, what is light, shadow. “When he lies, he speaks according to his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies”. This is an attempt to produce an “anti-Revelation”.
*The second development is the ennoblement of homosexuality. This in fact denies entirely the truth of marriage, the mind of God the Creator with regard to marriage. - Focus On the Family
The Cardinal is absolutely right of course, grounding his address in the Fatima message, especially as conveyed by Sr. Lucia (who he undoubtedly believes was the real Lucia, not an impostor, etc.), who let it be known in a letter dated either 1983 or 1984 that the devils final battle will be over marriage and the family:
“Father, a time will come when the decisive battle between the kingdom of Christ and Satan will be over marriage and the family. And those who will work for the good of the family will experience persecution and tribulation. But do not be afraid, because Our Lady has already crushed his head.” - Aleteia
‘If they will not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded if someone should rise from the dead.’ - Luke 16:31
Sr. Lucia said that in 1983-'84. Our Lady told St. Jacinta in 1918. Since 1918 contraception and divorce became socially acceptable. Even more significantly, Bl. Pope Paul VI accurately prophesied in Humanae Vitae, the consequences of artificial contraception - evils we are living through today. Dr. Janet Smith wrote about these prophecies back in 1988. It's astonishing to me that we are now suddenly taking note, but I digress.
The Pope first noted that the widespread use of contraception would “lead to conjugal infidelity and the general lowering of morality.”
Paul VI also argued that “the man” will lose respect for “the woman” and “no longer (care) for her physical and psychological equilibrium” and will come to “the point of considering her as a mere instrument of selfish enjoyment, and no longer as his respected and beloved companion.”
Paul VI also observed that the widespread acceptance of contraception would place a “dangerous weapon…in the hands of those public authorities who take no heed of moral exigencies.” The history of the family planning programs in the Third World is a sobering testimony to this reality.
The final warning Paul VI gave about contraception is that it would lead man to think that he had limitless dominion over his own body. Again, the Pope did not specify what he had in mind, but his worry seems well-grounded. - Paul VI as Prophet, Janet Smith
That last one has turned out a bit differently since Dr. Smith wrote that. Who knew in 1988 the transgender issue would become mainstream. "Man believes he has legitimate dominion over his own body." He can change sex, become sexless, turn himself into a cat, a dog, and alien, tattoo his entire body to resemble whatever he wants, and pierce and scar himself into whatever he wants.
So you see, dearest Fatimists and apparition-private-revelation enthusiasts, all along the Church has taught and warned and prophesied, the weeds and the tares have grown among you while you were seeking counsel from dubious soothsayers and locutionists, and now even the most traditional Catholics prefer their idiosyncratic cafeteria-style of Catholicism. Save the liturgy-save the world. The pope is an anti-pope. Cardinal against Cardinal. Benedict was forced to flee the wolves. While ignoring the fact the Church has never changed her teaching.
So many cradle, revert, convert Catholics are willing and able to lay aside their convictions to benefit themselves, how many of us have repeatedly sold our birthright for a meal? To get married outside the Church, to move in with a lover, to go down any path of pleasure - to enjoy a greater freedom, only to become a victim of our miserably bad choices. It's good to examine ourselves on how well we have done with Catholic teaching, especially before we condemn everyone else, or look down on those Catholics in the officious manner one Catholic blogger with a degree in theology said about them, that they are 'too stupid to know better.'
For your consideration, think about the original sins Cardinal Caffarra neglected to mention. Faithful Catholic priests and bishops have been teaching this all along, and many faithful Catholics who educate their kids in Catholic schools have chosen to ignore it.
“One habit that has taken hold of many marriages is the use of artificial means of contraception,” Bishop Soto wrote. “The prevalence of the practice in and outside of the Catholic community has made contraception the unquestioned default mode of marriage. As a consequence, sexuality and relationships are misunderstood and misused; and their true purpose is misplaced.”
“The habit has shaped the hearts and minds of many, especially the young,” he continued. “Marriage is no longer understood as the covenant of love between a man and a woman that creates life, because procreation is no longer associated with sexual intercourse,” Bishop Soto, Sacramento
That's all for today poodles.