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In my home state this morning as I write this, the death toll for COVID-19 has exceeded 300 and my grief knows no bounds! I grieve not only for all the poor souls who have died, but also for their families!
Many years ago, C.S. Lewis wrote a small book after his wife's death, A Grief Observed. Perhaps, most lamentably in this tragedy, grief has not been observed, either with the prayers of the Church for the dead and the dying, or in the aftermath of their deaths.
Just when people needed the Church the most, the Church was missing in action. But a time will come — hopefully sooner than later — when the "all clear" siren will be sounded by President Trump and once again we can congregate in our streets and in our churches! Then we can observe our grief and offer for our dead, Rosaries, lamentations and funeral Masses.
That day will come, and before it comes, we should plan for it. What do I mean? Why plan ahead for this joyous day after the "all clear" siren has been sounded? Because the bad bishops and other clerics who have infiltrated the Church over the past 50-plus years are already planning, in the midst of this storm, for the complete destruction of the Church.
Think about it for a moment! Look at the actions of specific prelates — for example, Cdl. Blase Cupich of Chicago and Cdl. Joseph Tobin of Newark — during the midst of the pandemic.
They are spouting misinformation, such as "priests need to seek approval during this crisis for emergency baptisms. What absolute rubbish! Anyone per Church law can baptize anyone during an emergency! Even non-Christians can baptize someone — and the baptism is licit and valid, as long as water and the Triune formula are used.
Cupich and Tobin are part of the modernist squad who want not the salvation of souls, as much as they want people to go to their perdition without the benefit and graces of the Church's sacraments.
What I am talking about here is what you already know, and all too well. Last rites not administered to the sick and dying, confessions not heard (even communal ones), and Sunday communal Mass obligations abandoned en masse! The graces lost to the faithful because of the crisis, because of COVID-19, are incalculable. This alone cries to Heaven as a grave injustice. But the day will come shortly when Trump will sound the "all clear" and then we can congregate once again, and we shall — with purpose and with a plan!
Now during this time of shelter-in-place, we are all given the grace of time to strategize, to plan for the future. And so I encourage all faithful priests, deacons, parish council members and dedicated laypeople to do so. Talk to one another, call one another on the phone, send one another e-mails, text all the dedicated altar ladies, and so forth.
After the "all clear" is sounded, we will be given only a short time to act and we must do so decisively. We must follow a plan (we have to come up with this plan, as our bishops will not) to ensure that all our churches remain open in the wake of COVID-19; that funerals and burials take place for all of our beloved dead; that the regular offering of Masses resumes despite the deaths of our priests; and that the foundational sacraments of baptism, confirmation and Holy Communion resume immediately.
One card I foresee bad prelates playing in the wake of COVID-19 is simply not reopening certain churches: "Oh we don't have enough money to keep all these parishes open," or some such malarkey.
With the lack of weekly collections over this protracted period of time, many if not all parishes will be insolvent. Staff wages, bills for the school's new boiler, etc. will go unpaid because there are no savings in the bank.
To ensure that the diocesan ordinary does not simply declare X,Y and Z parish closed because they are insolvent demands that parish council presidents now work behind the scenes to enlist legal assistance among the membership to have injunction paperwork prepared beforehand. Because of COVID-19, many will have lost loved ones, jobs and savings, and we need to act now so as to ensure that their local parish is not added to the list of what was lost to the pandemic.
At this point in time I am, perhaps, jumping the gun a little; but now is the time for parish council presidents and other members to speak with concerned parishioners about what to do if Bp. So and So should do such and such. Give it a month and this opportunity may never present itself again. As the old saying goes, "Make hay while the sun shines!"
One thing that I would propose to all faithful Catholics —in all dioceses, in all parts of the United States — is to plan on going en masse not to Mass, but to your cathedral. Go to it immediately after the "all clear" is sounded by President Trump.
Every ordinary, with only one or two exceptions, needs to be presented with the Catholic laity's dissatisfaction with how they behaved during COVID-19. Our bishops need to know that their job performance during this crisis rates an "F."
I am not calling for the laity to tar and feather their bishops, but I am calling for the laity to demand:
These are all imperative questions that the faithful need answered immediately. And I am afraid that if a diocese does not show its ordinary a cathedral full of laity immediately after the "all clear" is sounded, these questions will remain unanswered or simply ignored by the modernist bishops we have in most dioceses.
How should this be implemented? The day after the "all clear," all healthy and faith-filled Catholics should go to their cathedral at, say, 9 a.m. and if the doors to the cathedral remain locked, they should start praying the Rosary. We have had Rosary rallies before, this one will be no different!
Pray the prayers of the Rosary until the doors are opened, and then pray the Rosary inside the cathedral until the bishop shows himself to his flock assembled within. And if he does not show himself, keep praying until the bishop shows himself, or some other ordained authority presents himself. As hard-headed and hard-hearted as some of these prelates are, these "sacrament sit-ins" may take a few Rosaries!
Throughout the history of the Church we have always had ordained priests, bishops and popes, and our history tells us that there have been periods in the Church in which the priests, bishops and popes were exemplary during calamities. But, our history also tells us that there were periods of time in which the priests, bishops and popes were downright deficient, even bad!
Let us all pray today that in the aftermath of COVID-19, our remaining priests, bishops and popes are good and help us, the laity, to restore our Church to its former glory — so much so, that it will once again reflect Our Lord Himself, who has no stain, no sin. Come Lord Jesus, come! And renew your Church!