Tuesday, January 12, 2021

New Motu Proprio "Spiritus Domini" Clarifies Roles of Female Altar Servers

By Jean DuBois 


Today the Archfather Rutherford I released a motu proprio entitled Spiritus Domini to correct and clarify the correct Catholic position on female altar servers, lectors, etc.  His Holy Eminence referred to the long and cherished tradition of women in service to the Church, the distinctive merits of both men and women, and the nature of the roles of service in the Sacraments. The complete text is given below. 


Spiritus Domini 


THE spirit of the Lord Christ, Eternal Priest and Supreme King, is great and must permeate all that we do in the Holy Church. Chief within that is the sacred liturgy, of which the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is principal as the true and living Sacrifice of Christ on the Cross. The highest care must be taken, and the greatest respect shown. It always is unfortunate when We hear challenges to the Sacred Tradition based on the ever-changing capricious whims of society. The political and social philosophies of the world must be influenced by the Church, not the other way around. To allow the doctrine, discipline, and tradition of the Church to be changed by secular societal philosophy and principles is the heresy of modernism. Most recent of these errors most sadly comes from Our Roman confratello, necessitating the need to issue a fraternal correction.

1. The church has always been served, even from the time Christ walked the earth as a man, by faithful women. Contrary to the calumny heaped upon the Church, the church has always honored and respected women, chief of which is the Blessed Virgin Mary. Women have served in many venerable and worthy capacities in the Church throughout her history.

2. Service at the altar is a privilege, not a right, for anyone, whether male or female.

3. Service at the altar during the holy mass is an extension of the priestly ministry, which our Lord established as strictly able to be exercised by ordained male persons. We do not possess the authority to change this, and neither does our Roman confratello, for We are both guardians and custodians of the sacred deposit of the Faith and tradition.

4. Thus the participation as altar servers must be limited to males duly authorised by competent ecclesiastical authority, preferably clerics when available. Properly-disposed females may be permitted, with approval of appropriate episcopal authority, on a limited basis as altar servers only if there is extreme need and no eligible males are available. This, however, is rarely necessary, as provisions exist for a priest to serve his own mas quite easily. Therefore, this option should only in the most extreme cases be exercised. It is further noted that this usage may reasonably be considered an extension of the duties of a sacristan, a function to which a female may be appointed, with historical examples thereof.

5. At no time during the holy mass should lay so-called "Eucharistic ministers" be employed for the distribution of Holy Communion.

6. The other functions during the mass, such as Lector have no justification to be appointed to anyone other than those provided for in the rubrics of the mass. The Order of Lector is among the minor Holy Orders and therefore likewise is restricted to males. Those direct functions within the mass such as reading of the lessons are exclusively clerical in nature and therefore necessarily restricted to males.

7. It is further noted that the office of Deaconess, a venerable office held by women from the time of the early church, is completely distinct from the Holy Order of Deacons. That is, a Deaconess is not a cleric and is not ordained.

8. God has established special distinctness between males and females as part of His holy plan. These distinctions should be honoured and venerated.

Datum Florentiae Novae Romae apud S. Stefani sub sigillo Diaconis die XII mensis Januarii A.D. MMXXI.

Ego Archipater R.

Sunday, January 10, 2021

Political Distress: Archfather Urges Peace after American Political Turmoil


His Holiness and Eminence the Archfather Rutherford I gave the following statement on political turmoil in the wake of the U.S. Presidential Election on the Feast of the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph. In the statement, His Holiness and Eminence argued against violence and revolution, instead admonishing the clergy and faithful to focus on the Catholic faith and serve as a light in a world of darkness. 

CARISSIMI: For the last several months, the world has watched with concern and anticipation regarding the out come of the United States presidential election. That has now been settled, though conflict, consternation, concern, and division still remain. In the Epistle lesson from the mass today on the Feast of the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, St. Paul reminds us to “let the word of Christ dwell in you abundantly, in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual canticles, singing grace in your hearts to God. All whatsoever you do in word or in work, do all in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ, giving thanks to God and the father by Jesus Christ our Lord.”

We must, therefore, advise and admonish the clergy and faithful that the Christian people serve God above all other things, and consequently we must put our focus on that eternal mission rather than on the fleeting politics of any particular country. There are several things in particular that We wish to specify:

1. Pray the Rosary for peace and the establishment of the Laws of Christ on earth. The rosary is, next to the Holy Mass, the most powerful weapon on earth.

2. Rather than being fearful, direct your focus and energy into putting the faith into action, serving God, learning and growing in the faith, and helping others.

3. Make your main identity that of being a Catholic, not any particular political party in any particular country, for all nations and politics of this earth are fleeting.

4. Avoid ad hominem attacks against others, instead remaining charitable and focusing on the various and specific issues. It is the desire of Christ that all be reconciled with Him, for we are all part of the Body of Christ. Let us not condemn, therefore, where Christ wishes reconciliation.

5. Let all politically-oriented discussion or criticism be purely and entirely made from the standpoint of absolutely nothing but the Doctrine of the Faith of Christ. As Catholics we are bound to do this.

6. Focus primarily on the main issues of the Catholic social doctrine, the chief of which is the right to life. Regardless of the party that is in power at any given time, a nation that permits or endorses the wholesale murder of unborn children and does not respect human dignity cannot claim to be for the people and is in desperate need of Christ. Be a witness to the light of Christ in such a land.

7. Do not support or participate in revolution or insurrection, but rather be an instrument of peace. History shows that revolutions and insurrections always fall short of their promises, rarely if ever leading to positive change. Indeed, although that great Doctor of the Church St. Thomas Aquinas clearly stated that Catholics have a right to self defence and also a right and duty to disobedience against unjust authority, i.e., authority not consistent with the laws of God, the saintly doctor also made it clear that the seizing of power through violent usurpation does not constitute legitimate government or authority.

Therefore, We again urge and admonish the clergy and faithful to work towards peace and place their focus on God alone, working to establish the Kingdom of God here on earth. It is only through the grace of God coupled with the labour of mankind that the world may be improved. Any other notion is inconsistent with the Catholic faith. Go, therefore, into the world and serve in the example of Christ with Our blessing, the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.