Thursday, 30 June 2016

Defence of the Seven Sacraments

King Henry VIII is famous for having sundered England from the papacy in 1534.

But in 1521 he was still fully Catholic and personally wrote this punchy theological treatise against the "pestilential heresy" of Martin Luther.

Before the death of his elder brother, Henry had been destined for the Church. He displays true learning and skilful debating in his defence of the seven sacraments and the Holy See. He poignantly champions the divine origin of the papacy and proves at length the indissolubility of the Sacrament of Matrimony which he was in later years to violate so often. It was this work which won for Henry the title of "Defender of the Faith", awarded by Pope Leo X, which still appears on British coins.

Monday, 27 June 2016

Thoughts for the Sick

The Rev. C. Hoffman (C.SS.R) compiles some of the thoughts from a man who suffered and was sick.

It took Alphonsus Liguori nineteen years to die and here are the thoughts that sustained him.

These thoughts are the ones which so cheered Aubrey Beardsley, artist-convert, in his last moments: "I have been reading a good deal of St. Alphonsus Liguori; no one dispels depression more effectively than he. Reading his loving exclamations so lovingly reiterated, it is impossible to remain dull and sullen." 

This book is suggested for those who are hospitalised, bed-ridden or suffering from illness and need some hopeful and practical thoughts to help them with their time of trial. 

Nihil Obstat: Arthur J. Scanlan, S.T.D.; Imprimatur: Patrick Cardinal Hayes; First printed 1932.

Saturday, 25 June 2016

The Life of Father Ignatius Spencer, C. P.

Who is this ragged old pauper lying dead in a ditch in Scotland in 1865, penniless and alone? 

Can it really be the Honourable George Spencer - son, brother and uncle of earls? Whose father was the First Lord of the Admiralty? Whose sister is governess to Queen Victoria? Whose cousin and playfellow was the Lord Lucan who gave the fateful order to the Light Brigade? The relative of the Dukes of Marlborough and Devonshire, the familiar acquaintance of Prime Ministers? An alumnus of Eton and Cambridge, a scholar, polyglot, and one-time man-about-town? Whose great great great niece, Lady Diana Spencer, is destined to wed the heir to the throne?
Look closer. What is this strange black habit about the corpse? But hush - it is the body of a priest, a religious. The dead man has voluntarily renounced riches for poverty, comfort for the Cross, friendship with the mighty for fellowship with the poor. He has given up even his name and title for that of Father Ignatius of St. Paul.

Friday, 24 June 2016

Money Manipulation and Social Order

Father Denis Fahey (1883-1954) was one of the most erudite and holy priests of his day.

He had learnt from the popes that the world’s ills are due to errors spread by organised forces of subversion hostile to the reign of Christ, and that their cure can be found in the opposing truths exposed by Saint Thomas Aquinas. His books set out the opposition between the programme of Christ the King for the good of mankind and the programme of modern naturalism and liberalism which invariably wreaks ruin.
In Money Manipulation and Social Order, Father Fahey explains how the world’s banking system works, how money is brought into being, what determines its value, how it is distributed and all major economic phenomena. In contrast with this, he sets out what money ought to be and how the world’s finances would be organized if men would submit to the sweet yoke of Christ in public as well as in private life.
Fahey denounces as immoral and suicidal the debt-spiral of money created as an interest-bearing loan.

Thursday, 23 June 2016

The Dates of the Birth and Death of Jesus Christ

Is the Christian calendar we all use historically accurate?

Was 1 A.D. really the first “year of the Lord”?

Does the Christian era start from the true date of Our Lord’s birth?
Was Christ in fact crucified under Pontius Pilate in 33 A.D. as Christian tradition tells us? 

Is there any way of knowing for sure?

Most scholars answer, 'no'. They claim that our calendar is wrong and that Christ was born at the latest in 4 B.C. They rely on the first century Jewish historian’s date for the death of Herod to reject the traditional date assigned by Dionysius the Little which the civilised world has followed ever since.

But General Hugues de Nanteuil has re-examined the evidence and demonstrates overwhelmingly that it was Josephus who got his dates wrong, not the Church.

While vindicating the Christian calendar he also provides a mass of fascinating testimony to the historical truth of the Christian Faith.

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

The End of the Present World

This book played a crucial role in the life of Saint Thérèse of the Child Jesus who warmly recommended it.

Canon Arminjon recounts all that Scripture contains and that tradition transmits about the last times of this world, Antichrist, the conversion of the Jews, the two witnesses, death, judgment, heaven and hell, eternity.

He explains the life of Christian sacrifice as the key to eternal glory.

Fascinating and readable, Arminjon's book changes lives !

This translation remains, as far as we know, the only unabridged, unexpurgated English version of this Catholic bestseller on the market.

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

The Pope and The Antichrist

Cardinal Manning's 1861 study of the papacy as the obstacle to Antichrist has never been more topical.

The learned convert seems to have foreseen many details of the present crisis: religious liberty, ecumenism, national apostasy, apparent defeat of the Church.

Manning argues that the apostasy of the nations of Christendom and the eclipse of the papacy will usher in the reign of Antichrist.

Monday, 20 June 2016

The Christian of the Day and the Christian of the Gospel

The saintly Fr. Emmanuel André (1826–1903) was probably France’s most successful pastor of the last two centuries after the Curé of Ars.

He transformed his lukewarm rural parish into a haven of sanctity and founded a Benedictine monastery there, of which he was been named abbot. His work inspired Saint Pius X.
Looking at the Catholics of his day, Fr. Emmanuel was horror-stricken. He saw their salvation jeopardised, especially by Naturalism, doctrinal ignorance, moral laxity, vanity, worldliness and want of the spirit of the Church. The chief weapon he used to convert souls was the Church’s official prayer, the traditional Roman liturgy.
In this short book Fr. Emmanuel sets out with frightening clarity the gulf that separates ignorant, worldly and temporising Catholics from the Christian whose mind and life fully reflects Christ’s Gospel. Never before translated.

Friday, 17 June 2016

Why I Became a Catholic

This book is a masterpiece from the author, Henry Edward Cardinal Manning, on the four Truths that are the four corners of his faith:

"Some years ago, being for many days on a journey without work or books, I thought that it might be a fair time to write down, in fewest words, the reasons for what I believe. The thoughts were written as the crow flies, over wide lands and a long flight, without deviation from the straight line. Much was, therefore, omitted that might be said, but the continuity and coherence of the reasoning were my only aim. They who will do more solidly what I have done so slightly will deserve and receive my thanks. The text remains as it was written. The references have been since added."

The Appendix contains "A Brief History of the Life of Henry Edward Manning" which provides a background on the reasons why Manning became a convert to the Catholic Faith.