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Both… And…

If issues of these “Comments” can broadly be divided into those that treat of the modern problem and those that treat of the Catholic solution, it would seem to be a pity if a number of readers are interested in the problem but not in the solution, or in the solution but not in the problem. This is because if I know the problem without the solution, I can be seriously tempted to despair, especially today, when God is giving to His enemies unprecedented permission almost to destroy His Church. On the other hand if knowledge of the solution leads me to mistake or to underestimate the problem, then the problem is liable to catch me unawares by going around my inadequate defences.

St Paul was a classic case of someone who knew both, and who grasped so well the New Testament solution, Jesus Christ (Rom. VII, 24–25), only because he had been a fervent Pharisee according to the problem of what sinful men had made of the Old Testament (I Cor. XV, 8–10). So it was only because St Paul had directly experienced the powerlessness of the Old Testament to forgive sin that he so deeply understood the salvation which Christ had brought to men by the New Testament. Another great convert who profited from many years in error to become one of the Church’s greatest ever servants of Catholic truth was St Augustine. Here is why the French have a saying, “A convert is worth two apostles.”

And here is why Catholics today should not scorn knowledge of the enemies of God or of how they are fighting Him, however vile that fight may be. And non-Catholics will be wise not to scorn the Catholic Church, because, however downtrodden it may appear to be, it still has the only true solutions to any of the world’s real, i.e. properly human, problems. All such problems are the poisoned fruit of sin rearing up against God in men’s souls, where God alone, and not psychiatrists, can penetrate with His forgiveness, which He chooses to bestow through His divine Son alone, and the Church purchased with His Blood.

Then let us suggest to non-Catholic readers of these “Comments” that they take interest not only in the analyses of the modern arts or politics, but also in their arguments that can seem to be merely squabbles among Catholics, such as what is wrong with Vatican II, or how the Society of St Pius X is more and more following Vatican II. This is because the Catholic Church may well be the only true solution of all readers’ true problems, but that solution is vulnerable to constant falsification by sinful men, and if it is falsified it is no longer the solution but part of the problem. Now Vatican II was the logical climax of many centuries of men wishing to put man in the place of God, and the Society of St Pius X, while it was designed and founded in 1970 to resist the errors of Vatican II, has since 2012 in particular fallen under the poisonous charm of those errors. Therefore non-Catholics looking for real solutions to the modern problems that they know all too well should follow the arguments over Vatican II and the Society.

Correspondingly, to Catholic readers of these “Comments” let it be suggested that they follow not only the arguments concerning Vatican II and the Society’s dangerous slide into conformity with the modern world but also the analyses in depth of what is wrong with that world. For indeed if the Society leaders are sliding in this way, is it not because they have underestimated the problem of that world? Are they not heading for defeat by waging a war without knowing the enemy? Whereas Archbishop Lefebvre once said that the whole of Vatican II is shot through with subjectivism, did not Bishop Fellay once say that 95% of its texts are acceptable? And whereas the Archbishop often said, in so many words, that one needs a long spoon to sup with today’s Conciliar Romans, is not Bishop Fellay’s successor following the latter’s example of behaving as though he thinks he can outwit the Roman devils? The real strength of the Archbishop was never his cleverness but always his faith, and his faithfulness to Catholic truth. And the same is true of the Society which he founded. Then let Catholic readers of these “Comments” not think that they have no need to consider the Comments’ analyses of modern corruption, however distasteful that consideration may be to them. They cannot afford to hide their heads in the sand.

Kyrie eleison.