In our previous editorials, Hidden Agenda - Parts One through Four, I wrote about certain individuals, including the clergy, who have the hidden agenda of trying to ‘protestantize’ the Catholic Church.  It is a deliberate attempt to bring more Protestants into the Church, but it is also driving Catholics out of the Church.  The examples that I have given previously were the reduction in devotion to the rosary and the crucifix, lack of proper reverence for our Lord in the tabernacle, and elimination of the sacrament of Penance.

When we see someone praying the rosary, contemplating at a crucifix, genuflecting and making the sign of the cross before entering a pew, or standing in line outside a confessional we can feel very confident that this person is a Catholic.  Those with the hidden agenda to protestantize the faith are attempting to reduce our devotion to the rosary, eliminate the crucifix, stop genuflection in front of our Lord, and try to convince us that no one needs to receive the sacrament of Penance.  Since starting this series of articles I have visited a Catholic church where the crucifix has been replaced by an ‘artistic’ rendition that defies anyone to determine that it is even a cross.  I have seen a picture of a church sanctuary (St. Julie’s Parish in San Jose) where the crucifix has been replaced by a dead tree branch. 
Most of us have seen the lack of genuflection by some of the clergy, deacons, and altar servers as well as many parishioners.  Receiving the Lord on your knees during communion is definitely discouraged.  One priest has even told such devoted Catholics to get to the end of the line if they wish to receive in this manner.  Of course, placing the tabernacle in a less prominent location is another way to confuse the parishioners and eliminate genuflecting.

In regard to the need for confession, some priests can’t even say the word ‘sin.’  At best, they use words such as ‘moral failing’ thinking they are making progress by not talking about sin.  They do not believe in sin, Satan, or Hell.

Prior to the Vatican ll Council, there was one thing we all felt comfortable with in the Catholic Church and that was unity.  If we were from Minnesota and visiting a relative in California, we knew when we went to Mass it was going to be identical with the Mass back home.  Maybe the homily would be better or maybe worse, but the Mass itself was the same showing unity with obedience to our pope and the Magisterium.  We even knew if we went to a foreign country the Mass would be the same and you could follow through without even understanding the foreign language.

 Now what has happened?  Our so-called ‘progressive’ (read modernist) priests, are changing the Mass to fit their own ‘style’ of worship.  Never mind the General Instructions of the Roman Missal (GIRM), they have their own ideas on how to make ‘worship service’ even more Protestant.  Using glassware instead of precious metal for the Body and Blood of Jesus is usually the first clue.  Next comes changing the readings (and even the liturgy) so that it is politically correct.  “God our Father” becomes “God our Parent.”  “Son of God” becomes “Child of God,” and even some masculine phrases are dropped altogether.  Other changes include church renovations such as removing the Communion rail, moving the Tabernacle so it can’t be found, removing statues, removing kneelers, taking down the crucifix, placing rocks in the holy water font during Lent, and so on.

However, the most insidious change has been the transforming of the Mass from true devotion to our God to the devotion to our selves.  The hidden agenda of these so-called progressive priests are to make us a happy, happy community of people that have no guilt feelings about any sins committed and receive only positive interaction from their fellow parishioners where the Sign of Peace is the high point of the Mass.  Forget silence after Mass – let’s make the end of Mass to be like the end of the Pot–Luck Dinner.  Let’s have lots of greetings and talking to each other on the way out of church.  Forget about those that want to spend some time after Mass in silent prayer.

One of the signs of the Protestant Churches has been the lack of unity.  If a group of parishioners did not like the way the pastor conducted the service, they started their own denomination.  Today there are literally thousands of Protestant denominations throughout the world.  Now in our Catholic Churches, thanks to our ‘progressive’ priests, our lack of unity is becoming quite pronounced.  These so-called progressive priests create a Mass in their own image.   They have been encouraged by bishops that lack the backbone to discipline those priests needing to be corrected. 

The incident that started much of the individual changes in the US was the use of altar girls.  This was not allowed in the Church until some priests permitted it upon being urged by those parishioners who felt the need to conform to the secular feminist agenda.  Unfortunately, the Vatican caved in and permitted the use of altar girls under certain circumstances, i.e., lack of boys.  Now, many of our progressive priests feel that the way to create change is to make the change and the Vatican will again capitulate.  These priests are forgetting their vow of obedience.

Let us assume that a priest feels that using a glass chalice has the advantage of allowing the parishioners to see the actual Blood of Christ.  This appears to be a reasonable change to make; however to do so is still disobedience.  When he makes the decision to do this he is demonstrating to parishioners his disobedience to his Church.

Lets us assume that a priest decides to have a different family each week supply the bread to be used in the consecration.  This seems like a great way to get parishioners to become more involved; however, in all likely hood the bread will NOT be prepared in the manner prescribed by the Church.  Communicants will likely end up  receiving a crumbling Host with cinnamon and raisons.  Again, when a priest makes the decision to change to even a small part of the Mass he is demonstrating to parishioners his disobedience.

Due to the worldwide nature of our Catholic Church it encompasses many, many cultures quite different from what you would see in the US even though the US itself is quite diverse.  The Vatican has wisely allowed for this difference in cultures by allowing certain variations of the Mass if a Catholic Church in a particular area has a long-standing custom of celebrating a Mass.  By ‘long standing’ it is meant that it has been that way as long as the oldest living parishioner can remember.  Our ‘progressive’ priests take advantage of the word ‘custom’ to try and enact changes in the Mass.  They will say, “It is the custom in this church to stand during the Consecration” even though he started it only last week.  Or they may say, “It is the custom in this church not to genuflect.”  Again, this just demonstrates disobedience to the unity of the Catholic Church.

Other priests feel they need to compete with the Protestants and be as entertaining as possible during the homily and with their closing statements at the end of Mass.  Many of them look like they are trying out for an amateur comedy act. A friend of mine recently attended such a  Mass at a new church on Saturday evening as she had to go someplace on Sunday.  She put up with the, “It is our custom” lies, the desecrated artistic cross, and finally the amateur act at the end of Mass.  She felt so badly that she had to go to another Mass on Sunday.

Although some of our so called ‘progressive’ clergy are trying to remove our crucifixes, eliminate the rosary, weaken the devotion to the Holy Eucharist, trivialize the sacrament of Penance, and stop our prayers to the saints; we are still the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic church established by Jesus Christ, and the gates of Hell will not prevail!

Jim Fritz





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