Don't Wait to Watch!|
The VerbumQUO for today is "vigilántes" meaning "watching" or "vigilance" taken from today's Gospel of St. Luke for the Mass of a Confessor, Os justi, for today's feast of Saint Vincent Ferrer, the angel of the judgment who preached vigilance and left a holy fear in the faithful that they should, as St. Paul entreats, work out their salvation "in fear and trembling."
Editor, The Daily Catholic
Editor's Note: This is a new series the editor has launched in highlighting one word from the Proper of the day's Mass. Taking the Latin Verbum and Quotidianum, which mean respectively "Word" and "Daily", we have coined the word "Verbumquo" by contracting quotidianum to quo and running it together as VerbumQUO for this feature series, thus "The Daily Word," as in the sum of the message, the 'quotient', if you will. It is also our hope that in choosing the Latin word with its meaning and etymology more will be attuned to hearing the word read at the altar and better comprehend the beauty of the Mother tongue. Hopefully in this Time of Passiontide we can gain a higher appreciation and contemplation on how the Daily Proper of the Holy Mass applies in our lives in alignment with the will of Christ and His Blessed Immaculate Mother and His Mystical Bride, His Holy Roman Catholic Church.
Michael Cain, editor, The Daily Catholic
The VerbumQUO for today's Proper of the Feast of Saint Vincent Ferrer is vigilántes taken from the Gospel of the holy Mass for a Confessor, not a Bishop Os justi. On this Wednesday in Passion Week, his feast takes precedence with a commemoration of Passiontide. "vigilántes" is the adjective "watching" which is "vigilant" and that is exactly what the Sacred Scriptures exhort us to be, watching over our souls to avoid the pitfalls of sin and to strive for holiness for we know not the day nor the hour. Our Lord, in today's Gospel from St. Luke 12: 35-40, affirms the need for vigilance in His parable to the servants on watch:
In illo tempore: Accessérunt discípuli ad Jesum, dicéntes: "Sint lumbi vestri præcíncti, et lucérnæ ardéntes in mánibus vestris, et vos símiles homínibus exspectántibus dóminum suum, quando revertátur a núptiis: ut, cum vénerit, et pulsáverit, conféstim apériant ei. Beáti servi illi, quos cum vénerit dóminus, invénerit vigilántes: amen dico vobis, quod præcínget se, et fáciet illos discúmbere, et tránsiens ministrábit illis. Et si vénerit in secúnda vigília, et si in tértia vigília vénerit, et ita invénerit, beáti sunt, beati sunt servi illi. Hoc autem scitóte, quóniam si sciret paterfamílias, quia hora fur vénerit, vigiláret útique, et non síneret pérfodi domum suam. Et vos estúte paráti, quis qua hora non putátis. Fílius hóminis véniet." "
Laus tibi Christe.
At that time, Jesus said to His disciples: "Let your loins be girt, and lamps burning in your hands, and you yourselves like to men, who wait for their lord, when he shall return from the wedding; that when he cometh and knocketh, they may open to him immediately. Blessed are those servants, whom the Lord when He cometh, shall find watching. Amen, I say to you, that He will gird Himself, and make them sit down to meat, and passing will minister unto them. And if He shall come in the second watch, or come in the third watch, and find them so, blessed are those servants. But this know ye, that if the householder did know at what hour the thief would come, he would surely watch, and would not suffer his house to be broken open. Be ye then also ready; for at what hour you think not, the Son of man will come."
The emphasis of this word is so important that it is used as an adjective, a noun and a verb: vigilántes, vigilia, and vigiláret - "watching", "watch", and "to watch" respectively. Before we get into the essence of this word, let's look at the etimology of the word vigilántes - pronounced VIDGE-IL-LAHN-TEZ; vigilia - pronounced VIDGE-ILL-EE-AH; vigiláret - pronounced VIDGE-IH-LAR-ET. Watch is, in itself, an Anglo Saxon word waccan, wacian and so we look at the English derivation of vigilántes and vigilia and we can easily see "vigilant, vigilance," and "vigil." From vigilántes we get the term "vigilanties" which are troops on watch, so to speak. Other than that, let's see how Webster's defines these other words:
"Vigilant" - [From the Latin vigilans, -antis, present participle of vigilare to watch, from vigil awake, watchful.] Alertly watchful as one keeping vigil; circumspect; alert. - Syn. See WATCHFUL. - vigilantly, adverb - vigilantness, noun
"Vigil" [From the Latin vigilia awake, watchful.] 1. Ecclesial a Originally,the watch kept on the night before a feast, spent in prayer or other devotion. b Later, the eve of a feast; especially an eve which is a fast. c A religious service on the eve of a feast. 2. Devotional watching; hence, plural, evening or nocturnal devotions, prayers, etc. 3. Act of keeping awake, or state of being awake, at times when sleep is customary or needed; wakefulness; sleeplessness. 4. Hence, a watching; watch; wakeful attentive; as, to keep vigil. vigilance, noun 1. Wakefulness; sleeplessness. 2. Quality or state of being vigilant; watchfulness in respect of danger or hazard; caution."
While all definitions above apply here, this last description of vigilance is the intent implied by Christ in the Gospels and preached so fervently by Saint Vincent Ferrer. In fact, it was in the zeal that he preached how important vigilance against sin is that he merited the great moniker angel of the judgment. This is reinforced by another who was most vigilant in this during his life, not only observing the vigils, but explaining to us daily why vigilance is so vital in our journey toward salvation. That man was the renowned holy abbot and author of the magnificent 15 volumes of The Liturgical Year Dom Prosper Gueranger, who vigilantly reminds us in Volume 5 for today's feast:
"Today, again, it is Catholic Spain that offers one of her sons to the Church, that she may present him to the Christian world as a model and a patron. Vincent Ferrer, or, as he was called, the angel of the judgment, comes to us proclaiming the near approach of the Judge of the living and the dead. During his lifetime, he traversed almost every country of Europe, preaching this terrible truth; and the people of those times went from his sermons striking their breasts, crying out to God to have mercy upon them - in a word, converted. In these our days, the thought of that awful day, when Jesus Christ will appear in the clouds of Heaven to judge mankind, has not the same effect upon Christians. They believe in the last judgment, because it is an article of faith; but, we repeat, the thought produces little impression. After long years of a sinful life, a special grace touches the heart, and we witness a conversion; there are thousands thus converted, but the majority of them continue to lead an easy, comfortable life, seldom thinking on hell, and still less on the judgment wherewith God is to bring time to an end.
It was not thus in the Christian ages; neither is it so now with those whose conversion is solid. Love is stronger in them than fear; and yet the fear of God's judgment is ever living within them, and gives stability to the new life they have begun. Those Christians who have heavy debts towards divine justice, because of the sins of their past lives, and who, notwithstanding, make the time of Lent a season for evincing their cowardice and tepidity, surely such Christians as these must very rarely ask themselves what will become of them on that day, when the sign of the Son of Man shall appear in the heavens, and when Jesus, not as Savior, but as Judge, shall separate the goats from the sheep. One would suppose that they have received a revelation from God, that, on the day of judgment, all will be well with them. Let us be more prudent; let us stand on our guard against the illusions of a proud, self-satisfied indifference; let us secure to ourselves, by sincere repentance, the well-founded hope, that on the terrible day, which has made the very saints tremble, we shall hear these words of the divine Judge addressed to us: 'Come, ye blessed of My Father, possess the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world!' (St. Matthew 25: 34). Vincent Ferrer leaves the peaceful cell of his monastery, that he may go and rouse men to the great truth they had forgotten - the day of God's inexorable justice; we have not heard his preachings, but, have we not the Gospels? Have we not the Church, who, at the commencement of this season of penance, preached to us the terrible truth, which St. Vincent took as the subject of his instructions? Let us, therefore, prepare ourselves to appear before Him, Who will demand of us a strict account of those graces which He so profusely poured out upon us, and which were purchased by His Blood. Happy they that spend their Lents well, for they may hope for a favorable judgment!"
Could it be said any clearer than the venerable Abbot has put it? It answers the modernists who assume God is all loving and will look the other way at the compromises and rationalism of sinners who persist in their sins, putting off what they should address today, this very minute, this very second. The modern conciliar church of Vatican II has blurred this very necessity, preaching the humanistic surface ambiguous pabulum that God is love, without the Catholic truth that He is also equally all-Just. That was not addressed in the most recent encyclical issued by Father Joseph Ratzinger - better known as the pope of the conciliar church who released Deus Caritas Est which, as was confirmed by Zenit yesterday the very source comes not from Christ per se, but the ideas of the social philosopher of the 19th-century Frenchman, Alexis de Tocqueville. How great, Bishop Wojtyla gave us the heresies of Karl Rahner, Edward Schillebeeckx, and Pierre Tielhard du Chardin and from Ratzinger we get the same along with Hans Kung, Carl Jung and now Tocqueville, whom Ratzinger called "the great political thinker." Enough already! How about a great spiritual thinker? How about a goodly dose of Ferrer? That is obviously missing and so also missing today in the new order religion of Vatican II is the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.
I think I mentioned in a recent editorial about a professor of mine who just passed away. To Father Robert Eimer, OMI I credit my journalistic prowess and interest in mastering feature writing; alas, my editorial talents that God has helped expand and use those talents as a vehicle in his vineyard in whatever manner He so wills. During my early seminary training at Our Lady of the Ozarks in Carthage, Missouri from 1957 to 1962, this dedicated priest taught me the rubrics of English Lit and journalism, as well as coached us on the hardwood and the diamond, and was a most likable Oblate of Mary Immaculate back in the days just prior to Vatican II. He was orthodox in every way and I always looked forward to serving his Masses for back then, with well over more than a dozen priests on the faculty, we had 15 Holy Masses daily: two on the main altar and one in each of the eight oratory chapels beneath the main chapel. This man help mold me, and, next to the man whom I most attribute to being the Catholic I am today - Father Francis Zachman, OMI who passed from this earth in 1984 - and the dear Father Aloysius Svobodny, OMI who recruited me to the seminary and has remained a life-long friend, no one except the two latter priests had a greater influence on me. That is why I had profound sadness at his passing. I was notified of this by another priest Father David Kraus, OMI, who taught Greek in the seminary, and provided, for me, the most interesting class I ever had - Etymology. No class was more fascinating or better helped me in my vocabulary and understanding how important Latin is for comprehending the root of our own language today and it is this etymology I seek to share with the reader in these VerbumQUOs.
But the point I want to make is that in the vast tributes that poured in for Fr. Eimer, none, not one, mentioned prayer for his soul. All celebrated his life, and yet, this man, at the age of 72, left the priesthood and got married! That's right, sad as this is, after nearly 50 years as a celibate priest, he abandoned his priestly vows to wed a woman. We cannot judge his heart, we cannot judge his reasons, but his actions most likely scandalized more than a few whom he had previously touched. I was greatly saddened, as I wrote last year, that in a reunion of seminarians held two years ago in Belleville, Illinois, he was greatly cheered and applauded by those in attendance for this veering from his vows. What, pray tell, has it come to when men are so tolerant as to encourage turning away from God in seeking the comforts of this world? I dared to question then and again, on news of his recent death, that we pray for his soul and hope to God he made Purgatory. I received an e-mail from one of those ex-seminarians who asked me, "How are you so sure Father Eimer is in Purgatory?" My answer is simple: I don't, but I would hope and pray he is and that is why Holy Mother Church prays for the souls of the dearly departed. Why pray for them if their soul is condemned? Conversely why pray for them if they escaped the purgatorial cleansing by making reparation of temporal punishment while still on earth and dying in a perfect state of sanctifying grace? The answer is we don't know and that is why we have always had in the True Church a Requiem Mass, replete with black vestments and the beautiful, necessary prayers of this magnificent Mass that gains so much expiation for the souls of those who are facing their Particular Judgment, the very judgment the soul faces the instant his soul leaves his mortal body. They need all the help they can get, and the more we pray for the souls suffering in Purgatory - another reason why, in the great Communion of Saints, it is called "Church Suffering" and why we on earth are the "Church Militant" striving to join the "Church Triumphant" in Heaven. We must work in harmony. That is the true essence of "unity of community"; not the skimble-skamble concept the Novus Ordinarians have adopted to make everyone feel comfortable in their lukewarmness! So I would hope Father Eimer made Purgatory, just as I would hope and pray that Angelo Roncalli, Montini, Albino Luciani, and Wojtyla made it to Purgatory. Again, we cannot judge their hearts, but we can judge their actions and words, and the very fact they contradicted what the holy saints preached. Draw your own conclusions but remember Christ's words in Luke 12: 46-59:
"The Lord of that servant will come in a day that he expecteth not, and at an hour that he knoweth not, and shall separate him, and shall appoint him his portion with unbelievers. And that servant who knew the will lord, and hath not prepared, and did not according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. But he that knew not, and did things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. And unto whomsoever much is given, of him much shall be required: and to whom they have committed much, of him they will demand more. I am come to send fire on the earth, and what will I but that it be kindled? And I have a baptism, wherewith I am to be baptized: and how am I straitened until it be accomplished? Think ye that I am come to give peace on earth: I tell you no, but separation: For there shall be from henceforth five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three shall be divided: the father against the son, and the son against his father, the mother against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother, the mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law, and the daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law." And He said also to the multitudes: "When you see a cloud rising out of the west, presently you say: There will be heat: and it cometh to pass. You hypocrites, you know how to discern the face of the heavens, and of the earth; but how is it that you do not discern this time? And why even of yourselves do you not judge that which is just? And when thou goest with thy adversary to the ruler, whilst thou art in the way, endeavor to be delivered from him: lest, perhaps, he draw thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the exactor, and the exactor cast thee into prison. I say to thee: thou shalt not go out thence, until thou pay the very last mite."
That holds not only for Father Eimer, but for every last one of us past, present and to come. We all have to pay the Piper either now or later. It reminds me of that most successful Maaco commercial where the mechanic looks at the camera and says: You can pay me now or pay me later. We all know the significance of this. Fix your brakes now while there is still time and the costs will be minimal, or procrastinate and face the possibility that you're going to get stuck for a fortune and automotive problems. Would you rather enjoy life now and coast through life or get down to serious business here on earth so that you can shorten your time in Purgatory? It's a no-brainer, but the conciliar church has blurred that thinking so badly that I
wonder if Fr. Eimer really knew the seriousness of what his leaving the priesthood meant. Remember, he was an authentic priest, ordained in the 50's. He was a good man, dedicated to his vocation and craft. He helped so many traverse those difficult teen years as a seminary professor and counselor. I can only pray that those good works will balance his later actions in life and be weighed in the eternal scales.
We don't know his fate, but we do know that he, like the rest of the Oblate priests who taught me and followed the false pied piper into, what can best be termed, "apostasy," were
most likely confused by the bad tree of Vatican II which he undoubtedly adopted because of his vow of Obedience which has kept so many religious shackled to blind obedience to go against the will of God by obeying man, despite the overwhelming evidence that the new rite was not only a departure from the Immemorial Apostolic Mass of Tradition - "the most beautiful thing this side of Heaven" as the esteemed Father Faber described it - but a direct and deliberate disobedience by the conciliar popes of an infallible decree by Pope Saint Pius V (Quo Primum) in which he specifically emphasized by the power of God and the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul that it was set in stone "in perpetuity" as in forever and that the wrath of God and the Apostles would be incurred by anyone daring to alter one word of the Canon. We all know what has happened: a new synthetic, man-made rite was concocted at the behest of Bishop Giovanni Montini (as the conciliar pope) Paul VI, carried out by a 33rd degree Freemason Father Annibale Bugnini and an avowed Marxist Liberation Theologian Father Joseph Gelineau and six PROTESTANT ministers, that totally stripped the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass of its propitiatory essence of sacrifice in order to please Protestants. As we know, as a result of Pope Leo XIII's decree Apostolicae
Curae, the Anglican rite and ordinations were declared invalid; and they were surely more 'Catholic' than anything presented in the synthetic Novus Ordo and thus, the validity of the new order 'mass' not only gravely violates St. Pius V's Quo Primum and De defectibus but also concludes that it is indeed the "abomination of desolation" foretold by our Lord in Matthew 24: 15 as The Great Sacrilege. In addition, the ordination of priests and consecrations of bishops after 1968. when Paul VI dared to change the divinely ordained words of the sacraments, are also gravely called into question, especially in light of Pope Pius XII's decree Sacramentum Ordinis, which pre-condemns Montini's actions. That is why we refer to Benedict XVI as "Father Ratzinger" and John Paul II as "Bishop Wojtyla" for all bishops consecrated in the grievous altered rite are not, according to the infallible, perennial Living Magisterium of the Church, duly ordained successors of the Apostles. The same for any men ordained after 1968. They are not duly ordained priests. If they are not priests, nor bishops, how could they be cardinals? As for being pope, if not duly consecrated, then that office is also lacking. Want to argue the point, fine, I refer you to Pope Paul IV's infallible decree Cum ex Apostolatus Officio as all the evidence one needs. To believe anything else is to go against the Magisterium and to proclaim that novelty trumps doctrine and the papal mandate of "in perpetuity" not to mention the Holy Scriptures and the inspired holy wisdom of the Apostles, Fathers, Doctors, Saints and past reliable Pontiffs of the holy Roman Catholic Church. There is only one syllogism one can come to: Either the Church was right from the very beginning when Christ established His Church on the Rock of Peter (cf. Matthew 16: 18-19) or it was wrong and finally, in the same manner as Joseph Smith and Brigham Young, got it "right" - in other words, God got it wrong - and only the modern wisdom of the Latter Day Saints and Vatican II now have it right thanks to all the novelties employed to better reach man. As preposterous as that sounds to any well-founded Catholic, that is the thinking of those who have embraced the heresies and blasphemous rituals of the New Order enabled by Vatican II. Christ put it so clearly and all we have to do is read Matthew 7: 15-20 and then look at the modernist church of Vatican II, newchurch, the church which has adapted the Novus Ordo and discarded the Traditional Latin Mass to see that there are NO FRUITS and its eventual demise is inevitable: it will wither and be cast into the everlasting fire!!!
That is what should have every Catholic, every Christian, every human person trembling in their shoes - the possibility of damnation in hell. But that has been satan's greatest triumph chiefly because the St. Vincent Ferrers of our day have been, for the most part, silenced. They have been prevented, except from the catacombs, to warn the people they're on the wrong path, that they're heading for the abyss and encouraged in this by the very rite, rituals and humanistic religion they have embraced while thinking all along that it is Catholic. It is not, it cannot be. We need the St. Vincent Ferrers to be heard. As Dom Gueranger says, "Do we not have the Gospels?" Yes, we do, but in these times foretold by our Lord in those very Gospels, and St. Paul in the Epistles, specifically in 2 Timothy 4: 3-7,
"For there shall be a time when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires they will heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears: And will turn away indeed their hearing from the truth but will be turned to fables. But be thou vigilant, labor in all things, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill thy ministry. For I am even now ready to be sacrificed: and the time of my dissolution is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith."
Have we kept the Faith? If so, and I mean fully, then we can be more confident that we will not be confounded and keep our eye on the Prize. But that is the key and the summation of today's Proper for the Feast of St. Vincent Ferrer - to be ever vigilant for we know not the day nor the hour. What we do know is that Holy Mother Church, in her infinite wisdom given to us through divine Revelation, never takes anything for granted and that is why the infrangible Holy Sacrifice of the Mass and the nurturing, necessary traditional one-year liturgical cycle with the specific Propers for each day of the year help us in our vigilance.
Let us hope the fruits of Father Bob's efforts in his earlier days as a priest balanced out anything that might have been held against him before God in his later life. To tiptoe around that is to be tepid and uncaring as to the welfare of his soul, which must be the most paramount concern for each and everyone of us; not only for him, but for every last one of us, no exception, because Heaven is not a given. We earn it through our faith and good works, in concert with the merits of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Redeemer. Never forget the words of the holy Doctor of the Church St. John Chrysostom on the fate of the bishops of the Arian heresy in the fourth and fifth centuries: "The floor of hell is paved with the skulls of rotten bishops." The Arian heresy was small potatoes compared with the Modernism heresy today, which Pope St. Pius X called "the mother of all heresies." So I would imagine the walls and ceilings are oozing with the skulls of rotten bishops, cardinals, and priests who subscribed to the conciliar concept of Catholicism. We cannot judge hearts, but the actions and words of those clerics who have passed on make one wonder, greatly wonder, when placed against the fact that truly holy saints trembled that they would not be worthy of Heaven. Our knees should be knocking as well. It's a sign of the times to ignore what the saints found essential. Woe to us if we do not repent and amend our lives by making expiation for our sins through fasting, prayer and penance and return in all due haste to the True Faith - the one and only Church established by Christ, and pray to His most Blessed and Immaculate Mother Mary to guide us on our journey back to the bosom of His Most Sacred and Merciful Heart.
Finally, how ironic it is that "vigilant" is the VerbumQUO today when, for the first time in one hundred years, and most likely not thought of as it is being hyped today, we will arrive at two minutes and three seconds after one o'clock this morning the corresponding numbers: 01:02:03 04-05-06. This is fascinating and many will stay up until that time, especially if they have digital analog clocks to view this once-in-a-century phenomena if only but for a split second. This is fleeting as is every thing of this world, whereas our eternal destination is permanent, as in forever. Would that souls would stay awake in vigil in proper preparation for that hour that really counts when the Harvester will come to separate the wheat from the chaff. Be vigilant. Don't put it off. Convert now, or rue it later; in other words, don't wait to watch!