Sunday 27 July 2014

19-21 September: Young Catholic Adults' National Weekend

I am happy to publicise the Young Catholic Adults’ National Weekend, which is to be held at Douai Abbey, Berkshire, from 19th to 21st September 2014.

Full details are available on the YCA website, here.

In order to guarantee your place, Douai Abbey have asked that all bookings be received by no later than 3 weeks before the start of the weekend, i.e. by 29th August.

I’m sure that a wonderful time will be had by all!

Thursday 24 July 2014

The FFI: Here is something very odd.

This is my translation of an article in Corrispondenza Romana dated 23 July 2014. It concerns the Franciscans of the Immaculate, and in particular, the involvement in the Commissariamento of a certain éminence grise, who is profiled in the article. I think this is a very strange business, to put it mildly.

Who is Mario Castellano?

By Emmanuele Barbieri

One year on from the start of the Commissariamento of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate, the fate of the Institute is now in the hands of a triumvirate composed of Father Fidenzio Volpi, the Commissioner designated by the Congregation for Religious, of Father Alfonso Bruno, the “parricidal” Franciscan, and of an eccentric character, in the shadows up to now, but more active than ever as consultant to the policing operation: “Professor” Mario Castellano. So who is this man?

Mario Castellano was born in Imperia, in 1949, in a well-to-do family. His father Adolfo, a former commercial representative of Scotti rice, was a white partisan [presumably a reference to World War II – DB] and town councillor for the Christian Democrats; his uncle was Ismaele Mario Castellano, Archbishop of Siena. The young Castellano, after receiving his degree in jurisprudence, took the title of lawyer, a profession which he did not practise. His political sympathies have always been on the left. More precisely, he comes from the left-wing of the Christian Democrats, and in Imperia he is remembered as a Cathocommunist. It is also said that since the Nineties, Castellano has been affiliated to the Grand Orient of Sanremo. We await the interested party’s denial of this rumour.

Even though he had never been a professor, he taught law at the University of Managua, soon after the Sandinistas had taken power. (It was from ideological motives that our man moved to Nicaragua for a while, marrying a Nicaraguan woman there, from whom he separated a few years later.) He has collaborated on various websites and blogs, of esoteric and pro-Islamic orientation, before becoming the “right arm” or, according to some, the “left mind”, of Father Alfonso Bruno, whom he met at the Boccea house and has accompanied at times in the inspections of the “rebel” houses.

Since 2005 Castellano has written enthusiastically: in defence of the rights of Musims in Italy; in favour of multiculturalism; on the adjustment of our juridical system to the rights of Muslims; on the shared home of all (believers and non-believers, and believers of all Faiths). (1)

In 2008 he declared himself in favour of the removal from the “Tridentine” Missal of everything that could offend Jewish sensibility. Furthermore, in a positive and charitable tone, the author presented esotericism as one of the three motives for us Catholics being “condemned for eternity” to fight against the Muslims and Jews. (2) In islam-online in 2010 he described Islamic mosques as “a factor of stability and security”. (3)

On 8 April 2011, in an event of the Lions Club of Sanremo, in support of the Italian Risorgimento, Mario Castellano gave a talk on “Cavour Today” [Attualit√† di Cavour]. (4) Castellano showed evident sympathy for the Italian statesman, who was a noted anticlerical influenced by English-style Freemasonry.

On 12 June 2012 posted an anonymous article, in fact by Castellano, Europe Moving towards Federation? (5) The author of the article reveals himself as an enthusiastic admirer of the French Revolution and of the European Superstate, likening the crisis throughout Europe today to that which France suffered on the eve of the Revolution. The crisis then had its outlet in a revolutionary act by which the States-General, proclaiming themselves the Constituent Assembly, initiated the Revolution. Today the direct assumption by the European Union of the public debt of certain States, and of the private debt of certain banks, is considered as a revolutionary decision which opens up the way to a Federation of European States.

In the course of the French Revolution the clergy then split, between the “priest-jurors” who adhered to the schismatic civil Constitution of the Clergy and the “refractory clergy” who remained faithful to the Church of Rome.

Castellano’s sympathy is for the schismatic priests, as is evinced from this passage: “When Napoleon, in 1801, was to draw up the Concordat with Pius VII, the “refractory clergy” were to be pardoned and readmitted to the exercise of the ministry, while the work carried out by the “priest-jurors” during the previous decade was to be recognised and rectified from the Canonical point of view. Those who had chosen to remain faithful to the Nation had therefore acted correctly, from the point of view of the State, as well as from the point of view of the Church of France.” [The link provided here by Corrispondenza Romana does not work – DB]

Mario Castellano has always distinguished himself, furthermore, by his violent attacks on uncompromising Catholics who are lovers of Tradition. Perhaps it is for this reason that he is loved in his turn by Commissioner Volpi and by the Congregation for Religious, who treasure his advice.


Tuesday 8 July 2014

I hope this is not true ....

The journalist Edward Pentin has tweeted this item of information, or possibly speculation, which appeared today on the Yahoo Italian news site. Here is the relevant extract, translated by me:

Tomorrow’s press conference could also, however, be the occasion for other announcements. According to a leak, there will also be announced the creation of a new Secretariat for Communication, a new dicastery stretching out to coordinate all the communication channels of the Holy See (Pontifical Council for Social Communications, the Press Office, Osservatore Romano, Radio Vatican). According to the leak, the name of Lord Chris Patten has emerged in “pole position” for the job of president of this organisation. He is aged 70, a British politician, a devout Catholic (he was the organiser of Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to the United Kingdom in September 2010).

Picture from The Guardian newspaper, via Google Images