Pope Benedict 16 basks in general pupolarity. He used his visit to France to warn against idolatry.
Read an excerpt from the book of former Father Chiniquy (50 years in the Church of Rome, 40 years in the Church of Christ)
On August 15, 1850, on the Feast of the Assumption, I preached in Montreal Cathedral about the power of the Blessed Virgin Mary to ask in heaven for us poor sinners.
I adored her then with all my heart. Nothing seemed more natural to me than to pray to her and rely on her protection. In my sermon, I tried to show that Jesus Christ could not refuse any request that His Mother presented to Him, but that she always received all the graces from her Son that she asked Him for her worshippers. My sermon was, of course, more sentimental than biblical, as is usual among Roman priests. But I meant it honestly and sincerely believed what I told the people.
I told the devout that no one among them would be able to refuse a beloved mother; then how could Jesus, the best of all sons, do this? Moreover, it is said that Jesus was subject to his parents. But now He is the same yesterday and today and forever; therefore – I concluded with the logic of a Roman priest – He must still be subject to her today! Therefore also «the Holy Church, this pillar and this foundation of truth», invite the faithful to put their trust in the intercession of the Mother of God.
All the more so because all of us have angered Jesus Christ so innumerable times with our sins that we could not even dare to come before His offended Majesty; only His Mother could do this for us; she is in truth, as Pope Gregory XVI solemnly declared, «the only hope of sinners». You, the Queen of Heaven, have never seen Jesus refuse anything; that was the refrain that constantly recurred in my homily.
By speaking to the people in this way, I truly believed I was presenting the true religion of Christ; I taught what the Roman Church demands of all her priests. This homily had also made a visible and deep impression on the listeners; Bishop Prince, who had listened to it, thanked me especially for it and congratulated me on the effect it had had.
However, God showed me that He judged my sermon differently. Before I went to bed, I used to read a passage from my Bible, and I did the same on the evening of Assumption Day in the guest room of the Episcopal Palace where I was to stay. It so happened that I read chapter 12 of the Gospel of Matthew with a praying heart and a desire to understand the words of the Lord. I came to the 46th verse, where it is told that the mother and brothers of Jesus wanted to visit Him. I had read this passage many times before, but never before had it given me the impression that I have now.
I could vividly imagine – how Mary must have been happy to see her son again. And now what did it say? Jesus answered and said: Who is my mother, who are my brothers? And He stretched out His hand on His disciples and said: Behold my mother and my brothers! For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven, the same is my brother, sister and mother.
The pale sweat stepped on my forehead and my heart beat audibly as I read these words, comparing them to my publicly presented teaching today that Jesus always fulfilled his mother's wishes. Here she wanted a conversation with her son, and He did not even grant her the same! Aren't you ashamed, was it in me to deceive yourself and others with such foolishness? Do you not know, did my conscience speak to me as if with a voice of thunder, that you told a blasphemous lie this morning? Just read what the evangelists tell, and you will find that Jesus never granted a request to His Mother, and not, as you said, always! He rather rebuked her, both on this occasion and at the wedding at Cana. Why is that? Was it because he did not love her and did not respect her? No, but because he wanted to protest solemnly against the idolatrous veneration which, as He probably foresaw, would be paid to His mother in the following time.
All this confused me so much that I was shaking all over. The voice I heard inside me was the voice of the devil, and I called upon God and the Holy Mother for salvation from the hand of the evil enemy.
But I soon realized that it was not Satan's but God's voice that pointed me to the Bible. So I opened the door and read the passages in which Mark and Luke report the same incident, and it didn't escape me that Luke lets the Lord express Himself even sharper.
What was there to do? How could I resist the consistent witness of the gospels? Trembling, I fell on my knees and called the Virgin Mary again, she wants to keep me in this temptation, so that I do not lose faith in her. But the more earnestly I prayed, the louder I knew: How can you say that Jesus always fulfilled the requests of His Mother when the Gospel tells us just the opposite?
It fought like this inside me all night. When day broke, I was almost overcome, i.e. my mind, my will not yet. But my previous views on the worship of the Virgin Mary had suffered a serious blow and had changed significantly.
When I came for breakfast after that sleepless night with red eyes, the bishop asked me: "Are you ill? You look as if you had been crying all night." "I did indeed, my lord!" I confessed. "Can I know why?" the bishop asked sympathetically. "Yes, my bishop, you can! I am even obliged to tell you. But I ask, not here, but when we are alone, in your room. What I have to tell you is something so delicate that I can only tell you in private."
When we were alone together after breakfast, I thanked the bishop for his kind permission to empty my heart. He had been dear to me since my student days, since he had been a professor of oratory in the seminary; since then he had often confessed with me, and he had also taken an active part in my efforts to temper.
"I have had the most terrible night in my life!" I said to him, "All night I was plagued by temptations against our holy religion. Your words of appreciation had done me so well yesterday; but that night my joy was turned to despair. A voice told me all this time that I had lied blasphemously in my sermon yesterday when I said that Jesus could not refuse his mother, nor ever did. From the Bible, I almost had to convince myself that I, indeed that our whole holy Church teaches a blasphemous falsehood when it calls Marian devotion an exercise based on the Gospel".
The poor bishop was struck by this explanation as if by lightning. He said: "Surely you must not have given in to this temptation, otherwise what your enemies have been whispering to each other for a long time would come true in the end, that you will finally fall to Protestantism".
"Gracious Lord," I replied, "may the merciful God keep me so that I may remain a faithful and zealous priest of our Holy Church until my end! But I must confess to you that my trust in the Church was severely shaken last night. As a bishop, you must have more light and knowledge than I do. Your wise counsel and knowledge of the Scriptures could never be more welcome to me than at this very moment. Help me, please, out of this swamp I have fallen into this night. Read what it says here."
With these words I handed him the opened Bible and pointed to the conclusion of Matthew 12: "Please read this aloud! The bishop did. Then he looked at me and said, "What do you want with this?" "Your Grace will kindly explain to me by what right we can claim, in view of this passage, that Jesus granted all the requests of his mother, whereas the Evangelist tells us just the opposite."
The poor bishop was embarrassed by this simple and honest question. Either he had never read the passage, or, as most priests never notice, it was so directly opposed to Church doctrine. To help him out of the embarrassment, I asked him for permission to ask him some more questions, which he gladly granted me.
Then I put the following questions to him: "Who came into the world to save us, Jesus or Mary?" "Jesus!" replied the bishop.
"Who was the sinner's friend called, him or her?" "Jesus was called that!"
"To whom did he invite the sinners, to Mary or to himself?" "He said, 'Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened," replied the Bishop. He never said, "Go to my mother!"
"Does Scripture perhaps tell us of any sinner who first went to Mary and then gained access to Jesus through her?" "I know of no such case," said the bishop.
"On the other hand," I said, "we know that the dying criminal turned to Jesus and not to Mary, even though she stood by the cross." ""Indeed!" confirmed the bishop.
"But now tell me, my Lord, has Jesus, since he entered heaven, lost some of His love for sinners and power of redemption, so that Mary should now take His place?" "Certainly not," replied the bishop, "Jesus still has the same love and power."
"So", I concluded, "if Jesus is still my best friend, my powerful and gracious Saviour, why should I not go to Him directly, but to someone far below Him?"
The bishop stammered an answer I could not understand. Then he stood up and said that he had some urgent business to attend to, reached out his hand to me and advised me to search in the Fathers of the Church; there I will find the answer to my questions.
"Can you lend me the church fathers?" I asked eagerly. "Unfortunately not," said the bishop. "I don't have them myself." I was very surprised and my trust in the bishop was shaken even more. The bishop referred me to the Fathers of the Church and apparently had not even read their writings himself! But I still wanted to follow his advice and immediately ordered the whole collection from a bookseller. But how great was my astonishment when, during my most eager studies, I could not find a single place where the Fathers of the Church would have approved of the Adoration of the Virgin Mary! Until the sixth century after Christ's birth there is not a trace of it! Everything you read in Catholic editions of Marian devotion is a later addition, fraudulently inserted into the original text.
When I realized that, I kept saying, "Go out from Babel!" But where would I go? Where was I to find salvation outside the Roman Church, which in my opinion could only be found within the same? "Certainly", I said to myself, "my Church is mistaken on certain points; the dust of the centuries has settled on its golden treasures. But who can guarantee me that I will not find much greater error within the hundreds of Protestant churches (which exist in America), Episcopalians, Lutherans, Presbyterians, Congregationalists, Baptists, Methodists, and whatever they are called?"
Above all, I missed the unity of these different Protestant churches, as the Roman Church at least presents it to the outside world. I didn't understand Christ's word then, because He said: "I am the vine, you are the branches." Later on, when I planted a vine myself, I realized that the different vine shoots, despite all their differences, are all one in the common vine from which they grow, and that likewise, despite all their differences in doctrine and external form, all truly Christian churches are one in Christ.
So much for the experience of a Catholic priest of more than 150 years ago.
Up to this day the Catholic Church manages to establish its idolatry, the idolatry of the "Mother of God", in the world anew. The supreme of all idolaters, the pope, presents himself in public as someone who has dedicated his life to this idol. How is it that not all Christians have long since escaped from this church of shame?
The basis for the success of this pagan deception is the superficiality of the people. They love to be befuddled with all kinds of psychologically and physically effective drugs and love the mental state of uncritical "balance". On the basis of people's willingness to be deceived, the Catholic Church has been practicing the greatest deception mankind has ever seen for more than 1000 years.
And this modern Pope Benedict 16 also receives the approval of many young people in all countries.
Here is wisdom. Whoever wants to understand the signs of the times entrusts his life to Christ. Then, step by step, he will recognize the fatal error of the Catholic Church.