In our previous editorials, Hidden Agenda – Parts One & Two, I talked 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 rosary and the crucifix – probably the first images that a Protestant has when you mention the word Catholic. In this article, I would like to focus on genuflection.

The showing of proper reverence for our Lord and Savior has been covered quite extensively in many of our past issues – especially the articles on Catholic Teaching. Until recently our bishops and priests adhered to the General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM). Now they feel the need to demonstrate their modernism by attempting to change the rules, then receive an indult from Rome for a specific practice they are illegally performing. Two good examples of this are the introduction of altar girls and receiving communion in the hand. These practices were introduced by American priests and condoned by their bishops. After the practices spread like a disease among the so-called ‘progressive’ priests and the bishops ignored the letters and complaints from the parishioners, the bishops appealed to the Vatican saying it is now our ‘custom’ and it should be accepted. (Note: Their attempt to get us to stand during the consecration failed thanks to the many devoted Catholics who obey the teaching of the Magisterium and refused to go along with their ‘progressive’ priests and bishops.)

Are these minor changes? Not so minor when you think that the introduction of altar girls effectively reduced the number of altar boys to probably half of the previous number and consequently also reduced the number of young men exposed to the priesthood. The priest shortage is not a minor problem.

Receiving the Host in the hand also has negative results. It ties in with a number of other objectives of the ‘hidden agenda’ such as not genuflecting when it is called for in the GIRM. This has resulted in not only a lack of reverence for our Lord and Savior, but also a lack of belief in the True Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist. Now that the poor parishioner begins to believe he/she is only receiving bread, then why not go to the Protestant church down the street that has bread and grape juice, plus a charismatic preacher and better music?

We now are suffering the consequences of our ‘progressive’ clergy. The parishioner’s faith begins to crumble just a little bit more. Some priests don’t genuflect. Some deacon’s don’t genuflect. Some altar boys don’t genuflect. Now, guess what? Some of the parishioners don’t genuflect. On top of this we have self-appointed ‘genuflection police’ telling our children that it isn’t necessary to genuflect .

We are even given the false information by our clergy that the National Conference of Catholic Bishops (NCCB) has issued a statement that genuflection will no longer be permitted while receiving communion or in the communion procession. This is promulgated as if it is in the new GIRM. In reality, a NCCB committee of “modernists’ has made the recommendation -- not the NCCB. Even if the NCCB does approve it, this is not an acceptable change unless approved by the Vatican.

Let us compare our ‘progressive’ priests with some of the more saintly priests of the past. Our modern priests, who can’t manage to get down on even one knee (even during the consecration), are encouraging a lack of respect of the Holy Eucharist, a lack of faith in the Real Presence in the Holy Eucharist, and a lack of love for the Holy Eucharist. Consequently they are encouraging a lack of respect for, faith in, and love of, Jesus Christ.

Now let’s look at a more devote priest. When St. John Marie Vianney arrived at a nearly abandoned church in the remote little village of Ars, Italy what did he do? He arose at 2 o’clock in the morning and went to pray near the altar in the dark church. He recited the Divine Office, he made his meditation, and he prepared himself for Holy Mass. After the Holy Sacrifice, he made his thanksgiving. There he remained until noon. He would be always seen kneeling on the floor without any support, with a Rosary in his hand and his eyes fixed upon the tabernacle.

He maintained this schedule for only a short time, as he had to start changing his timetable. The Eucharistic Jesus and the Blessed Virgin Mary, little by little, drew souls to the poor parish until the church did not seem big enough to contain the crowds, and the confessional had endless lines of penitents. He spent many hours each day with those seeking the sacraments.

How did such a transformation ever come about? There had been a poor church, an altar long unused, an abandoned tabernacle, an ancient confessional, and a priest with no resources and little talent. If he had taken the ‘progressive’ priest’s position, he probably would have driven out the few parishioners that were available.

We can ask the same question regarding another small town in Italy – San Giovanni Rotando. Until a few years ago it was an obscure, unknown place amid the rough crags of a promontory. Today it is a center of spiritual and cultural life and its reputation is international. Here, too, there had been an unpromising, sickly friar, an ancient, dilapidated little friary, and a small neglected church, with altar and tabernacle left ever alone to this poor friar. This priest, Padre Pio, wore out his beads and hands in the untiring recitation of the Holy Rosary, kneeling in front of the tabernacle. Now hundreds of thousands of people come to this small town in Italy from every part of the world.

How did such a transformation ever come about? It is all due to Him, to the divine and infinite power of the Eucharist, to the almighty force of attraction which radiates from every tabernacle, and which radiated from the tabernacles of Ars and San Giovanni Rotanondo, reaching souls through the ministry of those two priests, true “ministers of the tabernacle” (Heb. 13:10) and “dispensers of the mysteries of God” (1 Cor. 4:1).

Do you feel that we have true ‘ministers of the tabernacle’ today when our ‘progressive’ priests can’t bother to even bend one knee in reverence to the Eucharist? We need to take a lesson from their ideas of the customs of the Church. We need to keep genuflecting as is our custom no matter what they try to push with their so-called ‘progressive‘ mentality.

Although some of our clergy are trying to remove our crucifixes, eliminate the rosary, weaken the devotion to the Holy Eucharist, and stop our prayers to the saints, we are still the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic church established by Jesus Christ.

Jim Fritz



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