From Ephesus to Fatima (II)
We read in our Catholic history that the Orthodox Fathers, defending the Faith in Christ’s divinity, rallied around a dogmatic formula “Theotokos”, “Mother of God.” The triumph at the Council of Ephesus was sensibly felt by the Faithful. They were standing at the doors of the Church while 200 Bishops had gathered together in Council. The Bishops formally summoned the heretic Nestorius three times, and while he was present in town with a small private army, he steadfastly refused to appear. Without him the Council Fathers proceeded to consider his writings. “Anathema to whoever holds such opinions! They are contrary to Sacred Scripture and to the tradition of the Fathers!” Reading the letter of Pope St. Celestine to the Council they excommunicated Nestorius. It was already dark when the Council doors opened, and the Bishops declared his condemnation to the large crowd of expectant people. Cries of joy rang out. Festive processions were formed around the Bishops, who were led by torchlight and perfumes of incense to their hotels in the city.
Thus, one Catholic word, powerful with the force of Sacred Scripture, Tradition and authoritative Catholic teaching had triumphed, and that triumph continues throughout the Church, ringing out in every Hail Mary that is said.
The problem of the Church in our time is quite different from the time of Ephesus. There, heretical Bishops taught, and orthodox Bishops gathered in Council against them and the flock was saved. In our time, at Vatican II – 1962-65 – Pope Paul VI encouraged Bishops to accept Liberal ideas and since then Popes and Bishops have never stopped referencing this Council as the justification for every deviation from Catholic Faith and Tradition. The Church opened its doors to “the rulers of this darkness” that no human power can stop.
The character then of our times is that the Bishops muddy the waters of Doctrine, threaten the faithful not to turn to Tradition and hold them by moral force in error, surrounding them with Sacraments that have been modified to express their new ideas, injuring these sources of Grace and limiting their grace-giving-ability.
For the average Priest and faithful, no one can dare oppose the Bishops, who united with the Pope, force them into obedience to things their fathers had never heard. But even in the face of this overwhelming physical majority, the authority of Our Lady of Fatima stands out, clearly pointed to by the whole weight of Catholic Tradition as the Mother of the Church, the Sacraments and the clergy. She who commanded God can command His ministers.
In the great secret of Fatima Our Lady mentioned the Pope 5 times, and for the fulfillment of the second part of the Secret, She formally requested the Consecration of Russia to Her Immaculate Heart by the Pope in union with all the Bishops. Our Lady means to gather the whole hierarchy into Her Heart by their obedience to Her.
It is our duty as sons of Mary and followers of Christ, to cry out ceaselessly that Bishops in the whole world return to the obedience they are so jealous to demand for themselves. Let these Bishops who have a right to command, first obey the heavenly Queen! The flock will follow, until then, Ave Maria!