MONTREAL, November 29, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) — A group of young French-Canadian Catholic men are asking their bishops to teach the traditional faith and give the spiritual leadership they say is essential to combat the nihilistic culture that tempts many to despair.
That includes allowing access to the traditional Latin Mass.
Twenty-nine men between the ages of 18 to 44, including university students, a doctor and two lawyers, signed an open letter titled “We Ask for Faith: Open Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church in French Canada” (read full letter below in English).
A lay initiative, the letter was sent to 23 bishops of French-speaking dioceses across Canada, as well as the Assemblée des évêques du Québec, or Quebec bishops’ conference, in early November, says George Buscemi, president of Campagne Québec-Vie, the province’s largest pro-life group.
The letter is now on the Campagne Québec-Vie website and has been signed by 145 people, including some women, as well as Fr. Daniel Couture, Superior of the District of Canada for the Society of St. Pius X, and Fr. Jean-Real Bleau, longtime diocesan priest in Montreal.
It paints a bleak picture of the lives of French-Canadian men, who “live daily in a culture of death that robs them of the desire to live and the desire to transmit life.”
Caught in “the infernal materialistic cycle of ‘metro-work-sleep,’” many men today seek to escape the “chasm of nihilism” with drugs, alcohol, and pornography. They divorce, lose touch with their children, and die alone or choose euthanasia., the letter states.
Indeed, the most recent statistics from Quebec reveal 1,331 euthanasia deaths between April 1, 2018 and March 31, 2019, including three euthanasia deaths for hip fractures.
Quebec is also known for a high abortion rate and lowest birth rate in Canada.
But it was not always this way.
“We are French Canadians, our roots penetrate deeply in the New World, but also in Europe, even in the soil of France, the eldest daughter of the Church,” the letter says.
The signatories attest to a “certain bitterness” toward their predecessors, who did not guard the Catholic faith, nor pass it on.
“In this era of euphoric delirium and destructive madness that was the 60s, those who preceded us gave way to a wave of inspirations from the depths of Hell,” it reads. That included a secular government that passed laws allowing divorce, contraception, and “the greatest genocide in the history of humanity, abortion.”
The signatories ask the bishops to give them the “Catholic Faith in its entirety, without sweetener. We ask that our people have access to the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass in a dignified form that gives glory to God.”
Julien Bertrand, the 36-year-old principal author of the letter, says he wrote it “as a heartfelt cry for my French-Canadian brothers I see suffering from a Godless nihilistic life leading to suicide.”
“On one side they are persecuted by their own government, the mainstream media and the intelligentsia because they were born white males. On the other side, their family, the school, and Holy Mother Church didn’t transmit them their rich culture, their glorious History and the one and only true faith in Our Lord Jesus Christ,” Bertrand told LifeSiteNews in an email.
“They are rootless trees in the hurricane of post-modernity, radical feminism and massive foreign invasions,” he said. “I hope those who are in charge of God’s flock will hear the call of their loving sons and may they know that we pray for them.”
Buscemi signed the petition “as a shot in the dark. I expect no answer, but I hope for one. I can do no better,” he told LifeSiteNews.
“I honestly think the Church is going through a Passion, that it is hanging on the cross before our eyes. I see temporal and eternal salvation nowhere else, yet the Church is practically dead and buried … Only God can resurrect, but he asks us to ‘actively wait.’ I see this petition as such an instance of active anticipation. We call for the resurrection, and hope it comes, soon.”
One anonymous signer told LifeSiteNews he has “no illusion that the bishops will react positively. But I thought it was important to join the initiators of this letter and I could fully identify myself with the experience described in the letter. You discover the tradition, and you feel like you have been robbed.”
“And the French-Canadian identity is so tied to the Catholic Latin rite that it’s impossible to understand ourselves without looking into it,” he said, adding that he didn’t think “there will be any serious return to the Catholic faith in this land until the bishops propagate and encourage the traditional Latin Mass.”
“Men need the sight of a God they can fear and love. I can’t fear and love happy-clappy-silly song-feel good religion. If I am going to give my life and die for something, give me something real. Not sugar-coated.”
Another anonymous signatory said he signed “because I believe in a Church first led by its priests and bishops. These figures of the Faith walking among us should provide guidance, example and inspiration; they be at the front, clearing the path for laymen.”
A petition cannot reverse the Quiet Revolution, and “I have no illusions nor conservative nostalgia,” he wrote.
“What I believe is that times of crisis are particularly good times to be Saints, following Jesus Christ himself in the hardship, and a part of me hopes that such letter will give the necessary impetus for the strong and courageous priests and bishops to finally align themselves with our Saviour.”
The Vatican “is the spiritual and nerve center of the Western world. Ever since the Chair of Saint Peter was won over to the globalist cause, our civilization has been like a headless chicken,” pointed out another petitioner.
“The war waged against us is above all a spiritual war and will only be won with spiritual weapons. Without a strong Church, we are like an army without a general.”
“We need a fighting clergy more than ever … I believe that this letter was written as a local effort to that effect. I do not expect any answer from our bishops. Filial piety, however, commands us to humbly and kindly criticize our Clergy.”
So far, the petitioners have received two responses from the bishops, Buscemi said.
One was a pro forma letter, another paraphrased the Vatican II apostolic constitution Lumen Gentium no. 9, ‘The Church goes ahead, marching among the persecutions of the world and the consolations of God, announcing the cross and the power of the Lord until his coming.’”
Full text of letter:
We Ask for Faith: Open Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church in French Canada
By Julien Bertrand
(The signatories of this wonderful open letter are university students, a doctor and two lawyers. Twenty-nine men in all from 18 to 44 years old. They have decided for the moment to remain anonymous, as some are aware of the consequences that such a letter could have on their jobs, or their studies.)
Octave of All Saints, 2019
We send you this letter for three reasons: first, to tell you about the many evils suffered by French-Canadian men, then, to testify to the innumerable graces we receive through the Catholic Faith in its traditional form and finally, to beg you to make available to the greatest number this treasure that nourishes our souls and raises us to God.
A life of suffering
Every day, we are witnessing the devastating effects, on our compatriots, of a society turned towards man rather than to God. From his conception to his death, the French Canadian is measured on the scale of his utility for the consumer society, rather than that of the ardent love of his divine Creator. Our people live daily in a culture of death that robs them of the desire to live and the desire to transmit life. Our brothers and our friends are born into families broken by divorce. They grow up without male models.
They are given drugs because they are too boisterous at school. Dangerous ideologists wash their brains from an early age with perverse and abject doctrines, which deny the natural law created by God and thus sow doubt in many gullible minds. From adolescence, they are confronted with a premature and unhealthy sexuality influenced by pornography. Then come the alcohol, the drugs, the debilitating clothing styles and musical fashions, the intimidation and the suicide of some friends. At Cégep, our young French Canadians are taught by their Marxist teachers hatred of themselves, their culture and their ancestors; they are encouraged to worship the “Other”.
Having become adults, they find themselves a companion, but perpetuate by their actions the cultural scheme that is proposed to them, that according to which the human person is a consumer good like any other and that it is possible to simply throw away once obsolete. Every day, the infernal materialistic cycle of “metro-work-sleep” is repeated, to allow French Canadians to consume the last useless product that will serve to temporarily fill the abyssal void that inhabits them. Once this product is consumed and the attraction of the novelty having disappeared, the chasm dug by nihilism reappears and they go in search of a new product, a new holiday destination, or a new woman to seduce.
In turn, they divorce, lose their jobs, fall into depression; some do not see their children anymore. The media then tell us yet another case of “family drama” and the man is still portrayed as a wretch. For those who arrive at a later age, some grow old in loneliness, abandoned by their families.
Others are found dead in their homes, several days after their deaths. For those who have not had the chance to go out naturally, there is still euthanasia. Obviously, and fortunately, we do not all experience all this suffering, but we are daily witnesses of a people committing suicide.
The call of God
In the midst of our meaningless lives, living from day to day waiting for death, we have heard the call of God. In a singular way for each of us, the Good God made us discover or rediscover the Faith of our ancestors. For some it was a true love at first sight to Our Lord Jesus Christ and others, it was by a Love that grew slowly, but became just as strong. We tamed the inner life, discovered prayer, silence. We learned that we were not alone. God had desired and loved us at the very moment of our conception and He was always there with us and for us. We learned the Evil that we were doing to Him and that we still did Him through our sins, but also that despite our ingratitude He agreed to give His life for us so that we have eternal life.
An inheritance not transmitted
In the face of the Treasure of Faith that we had just discovered, we felt a certain bitterness towards our parents and those who preceded us. So we looked for anything else that they thought was appropriate not to transmit to us. The answer is in the question; we discovered that we were not beings without roots, without history, without culture and without faith who lived only to oppress women, homosexuals, ethnic minorities, in short, everyone who was not “us”. So we do not have to repent indefinitely of imaginary mistakes.
We are French Canadians, our roots penetrate deeply in the New World, but also in Europe, even in the soil of France, the eldest daughter of the Church. We knew Clovis, Charlemagne, the Crusades, St. Louis, St. Joan of Arc, then our ancestors crossed the ocean and conquered a land of forests and ice that they cleared and fertilized with their sweat and blood, in order to found a new province of the Kingdom of France. Admittedly, we subsequently suffered heavy defeats. Statesmen abandoned us for strategic reasons, but Our Blessed Mother the Church continued to watch over us. Under her protective cloak, while we were threatened with extinction by our small numbers, we became millions despite the oppression of a colonizer who wanted us to disappear. Our culture is rich, contrary to what we have been taught. It does not boil down to a professional hockey franchise, the sugar shack or poutine.
We are the heirs of ancient Greece and classical Rome. Our language was not born in a Michel Tremblay play, but rather in the France of Rabelais, Racine, Corneille, Molière, La Fontaine and Bossuet.
It is to its fruits that we recognize the tree
In this era of euphoric delirium and destructive madness that was the 60s, those who preceded us gave way to a wave of inspirations from the depths of Hell. According to the words of the International, the past was wiped out in all areas, including within Our Blessed Mother the Church, which made Pope Paul VI himself say that the smoke of Satan was given entrance by some crack in the temple of God. Not a single sphere of Western life was spared by this madness. The states changed laws that were previously based on Catholic dogmas and morals. Divorces appeared, as well as condoms, anovulants and “emancipation” of women. This led to the break-up of families and society and the greatest genocide in the history of humanity, abortion.
It is in this society that we were born. An exploded, materialistic and nihilistic society that lives only in expectation of the next ephemeral pleasure. A society that has swapped the worship of God for the worship of man and teaches us to despise the Church, this institution in the depths of the Great Darkness which was full of hateful pedophiles and which we were saved by the Enlightenment of the Quiet Revolution.
Like our patron Saint John the Baptist, we are the voice that screams amidst concrete ruins and potholes. It is our duty to scream in the name of our brethren who commit suicide and our dying people.
Eminence, Excellencies, we repeat to you the answer that our godparents gave you on the day of our baptism when you asked them the question: “What do you ask of the Church of God? And they said, “Faith! We ask you the Catholic Faith in its entirety, without sweetener. We ask that our people have access to the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass in a dignified form that gives glory to God. Our Lord Jesus Christ answered Satan, who tempted him in the wilderness, that man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes out of the mouth of God. We do not need a clergy who behave like social workers and bureaucrats.
Eminence, Excellencies, it is our souls who are hungry and thirsty for God. Dare to go against the grain and teach the gospel of Our Lord Jesus Christ, guide us to the good God and put on your cassocks so that we recognize you in the street and confess to you. Our ancestors lacked everything, they were hungry and cold, lost their grandchildren because of childhood diseases, worked like slaves to clear the land, but their souls were richly nourished by the good God.
Unlike them, our bellies are full and we have a roof over our heads, but our souls are empty. Only you can help us, so we implore your paternal benevolence.
Eminence, Excellencies, we hope you will not be deaf to our call. We assure you of our filial piety and respectful obedience.
Deign to receive, Eminence, Excellencies, our best regards.
The disinherited of French Canada