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"And I beheld, and heard the voice of one eagle flying through the midst of heaven,
saying with a loud voice: Woe, woe, woe to the inhabitants of the earth....
[Apocalypse (Revelation) 8:13]

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Fr. Campbell, The Only Living Witness

The Only Living Witness
Fr. Campbell 

Jesus warns us in the Gospel today (Mt.7:15-21), to beware of the false prophets that will abound in the days before His return as Judge of the living and the dead. He also gives us a sure way to tell whether we are dealing with false or true prophets, when He says:

“By their fruits you will know them… Every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit” (Mt.7:16a;17b-18).  

 

The Vatican II Revolution has given the false prophets a stage from which to throw their rotten fruit at an unsuspecting Catholic population. The faith of Catholics has, as a result, declined at a disastrous rate, to the extent that we can call it an apostasy, the great “falling away” from the Faith, as spoken of by St. Paul (2Thess.2:3). Some struggle to maintain their faith against great odds, but most of us have friends and relatives, once Catholic, who are now Catholic in name only. They live like all the other pagans. They may “go to church”, but their Catholic faith is “blowing in the wind”.

The false prophets, many of them so-called biblical scholars and theologians, Catholic as well as Protestant, do their best to discredit the Holy Scriptures, so that they can cast doubt even on Our Lord’s life and miracles. They claim that the Gospels were written by the Church a century or more after the time of Our Lord and the Apostles. The real authors of the Gospels then dreamed up fanciful stories about Jesus and the Apostles to make their religion look good. But the evidence that the New Testament Gospels and Epistles are the accounts of eyewitnesses is conclusive, as the Church herself was a witness to the life and miracles of Our Lord.

The Church was a witness? Yes, the Church was there! And it’s the same Church today. It has not lost its identity. The Church of Peter and Paul is the same as the Church of those who hold tenaciously to their Catholic faith as it was believed and preached by the Church from Apostolic times until the Vatican II Revolution. They have remained true to her original teaching, her Sacraments, the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, and the Chair of Peter, and they have not abandoned “the faith of our fathers.”

What’s more, the Catholic Church is the only witness. The followers of the heretical Protestant sects think of themselves as “witnesses”, but all they can give witness to is that their split from the living body of the Catholic Church was initiated by heretics like Martin Luther, John Calvin, and Henry VIII, hardly truthful witnesses themselves. Still less able to make that claim are those on the fringe, like the Jehovah’s Witnesses and the Mormons.

But the Catholic Church was there, a witness to the Birth of Jesus Christ in Bethlehem, witnessed by the Holy Virgin Mary herself, the first and preeminent member of the Church. The Church is also witness to His life and miracles, His Crucifixion, His Resurrection, and the coming of the Holy Ghost at Pentecost. It is the only competent living witness as to the absolute reliability of the Holy Bible, the written Word of God. Actually, the Church was preaching the living Word of God, handing on the living Tradition of the Church even before the Epistles and Gospels of the New Testament were written.

Who compiled these inspired writings, together with the inspired books of the Old Testament into the one book we call the Bible, but the Catholic Church? The Bible did not fall from heaven into the hands of Martin Luther and his fellow heretics, as many of our Protestant friends seem to think. In fact, in order not to allow his false teachings to be exposed to the truth of God’s word, Luther deleted several books from the biblical canon. Some witness! Only the Catholic Church has the ability to interpret the Scriptures authoritatively. St. Peter, our first pope, gives this warning concerning the interpretation of the epistles of St. Paul:

“In these epistles there are certain things difficult to understand, which the unlearned and the unstable distort, just as they do the rest of the Scriptures also, to their own destruction. You therefore, brethren, since you know this beforehand, be on your guard lest, carried away by the error of the foolish, you fall away from your own steadfastness. But grow in grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ” (2Pet.3:16,17,18a).

The Church witnesses that Jesus really did feed the thousands of hungry people by multiplying the loaves and the fishes, on more than one occasion. “Oh,” say the false prophets with an indulgent smile, “The real miracle was that Jesus inspired some of those good people who had brought along a basket lunch to share their sandwiches with the others.” Really!

And Jesus really did walk on water! He did raise from the dead the daughter of Jairus, the son of the widow of Naim, and Lazarus, the brother of Martha and Mary, after he had been lying dead for four days in the tomb! And He did rise from the dead Himself! And He did give His Body and Blood to be our food and drink!

Deny any one of these miracles of Jesus Christ and you open the door to the denial of all biblical miracles. These Modernist false prophets think that miracles are impossible. They have no supernatural faith, so they must build up a structure based on human reason alone unenlightened by Divine Revelation. In that structure, the New Church, there is room only for those things which are acceptable to a faithless world. The “New Springtime” for the Church foretold by the false prophets of Modernism, has turned out to be its darkest winter.

We may be few in number, but we carefully and jealously treasure our faith, encouraged by the words of St. Peter, great witness for the faith, and first pope of the Holy Catholic Church:

“You, however, are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a purchased people; that you may proclaim the perfections of him who has called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. You who in times past were not a people, but are now the people of God; who had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy” (1Pet.2:9,10).