When Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio was first presented to the world as Pope Francis, when pretty much all the more “traditional” Catholics condemned him so severely that one was condemned for asking for prayers for him, I nevertheless insisted that to be a good son of the Church I must pray for him, also at Holy Mass. But what I call the ultra-tradition-al-ism-ist began a cancel campaign for anyone promoting, say, this prayer:
V. Oremus pro Pontifice nostro N.
R. Dominus conservet eum, et vivificet eum, et beatum faciat eum in terra, et non tradat eum in animam inimicorum eius. [Ps 40:3]
Pater Noster… Ave Maria…
Deus, omnium fidelium pastor et rector, famulum tuum N., quem pastorem Ecclesiae tuae praeesse voluisti, propitius respice: da ei, quaesumus, verbo et exemplo, quibus praeest, proficere: ut ad vitam, una cum grege sibi credito, perveniat sempiternam. Per Christum, Dominum nostrum. Amen.
The ultramontane heresy of the ultra-tradition-al-ism-ists is that the Pope must be immaculately conceived and is not ever to have personally sinned, so that he has no need of our prayers and no need of Christ Jesus to be his Savior. Because that is not the case (ever), the ultra-tradition-al-ism-ists went all apoplectic in their heresy of ultamontinism and continued in condemning him to the point of condemning those who prayed for him. Too sad. We will all stand before Him whom we have all pierced, all of us, men of every tribe and race and people and nation. What’s there not to understand with this. We pray for the Pope as we pray for each other.
- “Father George, you don’t understand. If you pray for Pope Francis that means that you agree with everything he says no matter what and you’re going to go to hell just like him because we said so and everything!
Sigh. Remember Peter, who denied our Lord three times and only later became Saint Peter? I’m guessing that he was martyred because Divine Jesus’ good mom, the Immaculate Virgin, prayed for him, already then assumed to heaven soul and body, Queen of heaven and earth, angels and men. We follow her lead. Get it?
But what about praying the likes of the present POTUS Joe Biden, the most anti-Catholic pro-abort ever? Saint Peter himself has something to say about that (1 Peter 2:11-17):
- “Beloved, I urge you as aliens and sojourners to keep away from worldly desires that wage war against the soul. Maintain good conduct among the Gentiles, so that if they speak of you as evildoers, they may observe your good works and glorify God on the day of visitation. Be subject to every human institution for the Lord’s sake, whether it be to the king as supreme or to governors as sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and the approval of those who do good. For it is the will of God that by doing good you may silence the ignorance of foolish people. Be free, yet without using freedom as a pretext for evil, but as slaves of God. Give honor to all, love the community, fear God, honor the king.”
A generation later, in the Letter to Diognetus, from waaaaaaaay back in the day, like the end of the first or beginning of the second century, addressed to the early Christians, all Catholic, of course, we read this:
- “For the Christians are distinguished from other men neither by country, nor language, nor the customs which they observe. For they neither inhabit cities of their own, nor employ a peculiar form of speech, nor lead a life which is marked out by any singularity. The course of conduct which they follow has not been devised by any speculation or deliberation of inquisitive men; nor do they, like some, proclaim themselves the advocates of any merely human doctrines. But, inhabiting Greek as well as barbarian cities, according as the lot of each of them has determined, and following the customs of the natives in respect to clothing, food, and the rest of their ordinary conduct, they display to us their wonderful and confessedly striking method of life. They dwell in their own countries, but simply as sojourners. As citizens, they share in all things with others, and yet endure all things as if foreigners. Every foreign land is to them as their native country, and every land of their birth as a land of strangers. They marry, as do all [others]; they beget children; but they do not destroy their offspring. They have a common table, but not a common bed. They are in the flesh, but they do not live after the flesh. 2 Corinthians 10:3 They pass their days on earth, but they are citizens of heaven. Philippians 3:20 They obey the prescribed laws, and at the same time surpass the laws by their lives. They love all men, and are persecuted by all. They are unknown and condemned; they are put to death, and restored to life. 2 Corinthians 6:9 They are poor, yet make many rich; 2 Corinthians 6:10 they are in lack of all things, and yet abound in all; they are dishonored, and yet in their very dishonor are glorified. They are evil spoken of, and yet are justified; they are reviled, and bless; 2 Corinthians 4:12 they are insulted, and repay the insult with honor; they do good, yet are punished as evil-doers. When punished, they rejoice as if quickened into life; they are assailed by the Jews as foreigners, and are persecuted by the Greeks; yet those who hate them are unable to assign any reason for their hatred. /// To sum up all in one word — what the soul is in the body, Christians are in the world. The soul is dispersed through all the members of the body, and Christians are scattered through all the cities of the world. The soul dwells in the body, yet is not of the body; and Christians dwell in the world, yet are not of the world. The invisible soul is guarded by the visible body, and Christians are known indeed to be in the world, but their godliness remains invisible. The flesh hates the soul, and wars against it, 1 Peter 2:11 though itself suffering no injury, because it is prevented from enjoying pleasures; the world also hates the Christians, though in nowise injured, because they abjure pleasures. The soul loves the flesh that hates it, and [loves also] the members; Christians likewise love those that hate them. The soul is imprisoned in the body, yet keeps together that very body; and Christians are confined in the world as in a prison, and yet they keep together the world. The immortal soul dwells in a mortal tabernacle; and Christians dwell as sojourners in corruptible [bodies], looking for an incorruptible dwelling in the heavens. The soul, when but ill-provided with food and drink, becomes better; in like manner, the Christians, though subjected day by day to punishment, increase the more in number. God has assigned them this illustrious position, which it were unlawful for them to forsake.”