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(Lepanto Institute) – Within days of each other, Cardinal Blase Cupich and Cardinal Wilton Gregory have imposed severe restrictions on the celebration of the Traditional Latin Mass (TLM) in their respective dioceses. And while they lord over the people of God their despotic ransacking of TLM parishes, the Catholic world looks on in horror and is left to wonder, “Why do they even care so much?  Why are they so intent on cutting faithful Catholics off from the ancient liturgy?”

On the face of it, there really doesn’t seem to be an answer beyond “because I can.” But apologists for Pope Francis’ draconian motu proprio Traditionis custodes assert that the Traditionalist Catholics had to be brought into line because of their mean and condescending attitudes, their rejection of Vatican II, and their criticisms of Pope Francis.

Beyond the broad-brushed painting of Traditional Catholics, the criticism falls entirely flat when we consider the last 40 years of harsh condemnation, resistance, outright disobedience, and open defiance of the Church’s immemorial teachings on homosexuality, contraception, abortion, and even the most basic liturgical requirements.

Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi, John Kerry, and an extremely long list of openly and obstinate pro-abortion, pro-sodomy politicians have been allowed to flout the Church’s teachings while receiving Holy Communion. And with the recent exception of Nancy Pelosi, they have done so with little to no word from their local ordinary.

In fact, Cardinal Wilton Gregory is in open defiance of Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone’s sanction against Pelosi. And yet, the war to be fought, apparently, is to squash the less than two percent of Catholics who prefer to attend the Traditional Latin Mass rather than the Novus Ordo.

Dioceses around the country routinely permit the grossest forms of liturgical abuse performed by Novus Ordo priests. Under Cardinal Cupich, recent examples include a “Mass” where the priest “blessed” the congregation in the sign of the cross with an acoustic guitar asking God to “rock with us as we roll with you.”

Similarly, at another parish, a bubble-gun blew bubbles throughout the congregation to the delighted giggles of the one doing it, and a guitar band played “Celebrate” by Kool and the Gang. Not a single word has been issued by Cardinal Cupich about these abominations, and yet it’s the Institute of Christ the King that has to go. They are the problem – not these rock ‘n roll, bubble-Mass abusers.

Fr. James Martin, SJ, travels around the country, almost non-stop, preaching a luciferian gospel of the acceptance of grave moral abominations. He told a homosexual man that he “hoped” that a man would soon be able to “kiss his husband” at the sign of peace in a Catholic Church. He routinely misgenders the Holy Spirit, referring to Him as “her.” He even appeared to support sex-change operations and the use of puberty blockers for children in February. He was responding to Texas State Attorney General Ken Paxton, who said:

“Sex-change operations and puberty blockers prescribed to kids is ‘child abuse’ under Texas law. These procedures are monstrous and tragic. I’ll do everything I can to protect against those who take advantage of and harm young Texans.”

Fr. Martin replied by quoting a letter from the Texas Pediatric Society, writing:

“Letter from the Texas Pediatric Society: ‘[P]roviding gender affirming care to transgender children and adolescents unequivocally does not constitute child abuse.’”

But satanically-inspired priests like Fr. Martin aren’t the problem – it’s those who wish to attend the Mass of the ages.

This constant move to smother those who seek and hold dear the glorious Mass of countless saints, while ignoring those setting fire to the most basic aspects of the Faith, makes almost no sense – that is, it makes no sense if you believe those doing it are of good will, seeking to lead souls to Christ.

Everyone knows the Parable of the Talents, wherein a man hands three servants a measure of gold, each according to his abilities, expecting them to increase his wealth.

In the parable account found in St. Matthew’s Gospel, the servants respectively receive measures of five talents, two talents and one talent. Most exegetical reads of this parable indicate that the talents are different measures of spiritual gifts provided by God to individual souls, from whom He expects a measure of return when they die.

Fr. George Leo Haydock says that the talents and their return mean “an account will be taken according to what we have received, and that however mean and despicable our abilities may be, we still have an equal facility with the most learned of entering heaven.” This is the primary meaning of the parable, but I think we can look at the same parable and glean another meaning.

Suppose we read the parable as a referendum on bishops as God entrusts that which is most precious to Him to them – human souls.  Here’s what I mean.

At the Great Commission, Our Blessed Lord turned to the Apostles saying:

“Teach ye all nations; baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world.”

It should go without saying, but the question has to be called here: why does God want his apostles to baptize the nations and teach them to hold to the commandments? It’s very simple, God loves souls and desires the salvation of souls. That’s why He came into the world, and why He suffered, died, and rose from the dead. His command to the apostles is to nurture, cultivate, foster, and bring Him the souls entrusted to them.

So, if we consider the talents handed to the servants, we could think of each measure of gold being a measure of souls entrusted to their care. The first servant who received the five talents can be said to have received a large diocese. His return on the five talents would be a doubling of the number of souls given to him by his efforts to evangelize, baptize, and confirm more children, and generally bring more souls to Christ. The same for the other servants, according to the measures given to them as well.

But where the first two servants worked to produce a return on the investment of the master, the third servant buried his talent in the earth. Fr. Haydock says that the placing of the talents in the earth “represents all those who, having received any good quality, whether mental or corporal, employ it only on earthly things.”

Can we not see this applying to bishops whose focus is far more on the mundane than on the eternal? While for us, this could mean using the graces and gifts God gave us for earthly delights, it could also indicate earthly concerns for bishops, such as worldly or purely political applications of social justice issues like the environment, immigration, health care reform, and other matters that do not pertain to the eternal life or death of souls.

And what happens in those dioceses where such issues are the primary focus? Many of them are decaying and dying, replete with liturgical abuses, desecration of the Eucharist, and an overall neglect of the eternal life of souls.

But there’s something else at work here, as well.

When the master chastises the third servant, he calls him wicked and lazy, saying:

“Thou knewest that I reap where I sow not, and gather where I have not strewed: Thou oughtest therefore to have committed my money to the bankers, and at my coming I should have received my own with usury.”

What a strange turn of phrase; “I should have received my own with usury.” Usury is condemned by the Church, so what could this mean?

If we suppose that the talents represent souls, and the servants are bishops, then the yield obtained through the investment in a bank would mean that the interest is the measure of souls that would have come naturally through the production of children in holy families. So, the bare minimum the master was requiring of the servant (bishop) was that he would maintain his diocese in such a way as to help the families under his care raise holy children. The children would have been the interest the master sought!

But the third servant (bishop), having placed his focus on earthly matters, neglected to invest in the raising of holy families. By today’s standards, we could say that the bishop would have placed his efforts on sterile pursuits, refusing to speak out against acts which prevent the growth of holy families, such as divorce, homosexuality, contraception, and abortion. So, while he pursues social justice to the neglect of his flock, his families produce fewer or no children, and those children that are produced are not raised in the faith.

And we know what happened to the third servant. He was cast out into the outer darkness where there is wailing and gnashing of teeth. But suppose what would have happened to the servant had he not simply buried the talent, but handed it over to the Master’s enemy?

Cardinals Cupich and Gregory aren’t just waging a war on the Mass, they are attacking the very souls who love it. If they honestly cared for souls, they wouldn’t suppress the form of the Mass that has produced countless saints while giving a wink and a nod to liturgical abuses that can only delight devils.

What they are signaling with these abysmal dictates is that they wish not only to deprive souls of the glorious adoration of God in a Heavenly atmosphere, but to then shovel them into the most depraved mockery of Christ ever displayed since the Crucifixion, itself. Who would do such a thing, except one who not only hated souls, but also hated the Church and hated Christ Himself?

I recently saw a quote attributed to Fr. Chad Ripperger, who asked, “What good does it do to curse a bishop who is already cursed? Why not do something beneficial and pray for him, instead?”

Anyone filled with as much objectively manifested hatred for souls and the Church as are on display by Cardinals Cupich and Gregory aren’t just floating downstream into the Abyss – they are sprinting toward their own eternal ruin.

Fr. Zuhlsdorf has put out a call for priests around the world “on 1 August say Holy Mass for Blase Cupich.” According to an update he posted Wednesday, we are up to 42 Traditional Latin Masses and 16 Novus Ordo Masses for him. The infinite value of a Mass said for the conversion of a sinner cannot be fathomed by the finite human mind. The graces which would come from 58 Masses are even more incomprehensible.

To all you priests reading this newsletter, I ask you to please, reach out to Fr. Z and join his call to say Mass for Cdl. Cupich on August 1. Just imagine if we were able to obtain the graces of 100 or 200 Masses on that day? And add to this all the Rosary intentions, Holy Communions, adorations, and other prayers that can be made by all the other faithful Catholics reading this as well.

If ever there was a Lepanto moment, this would be it. Humanly speaking, there is no way to change Cardinal Cupich’s resolve, but such an outpouring of the Grace of God can only produce good fruit, in whatever manner it comes.

And once August 1 comes and goes – we should do the same for another cardinal/bishop. And then another, and so on.

Our Lady of Victory, ora pro nobis!

Reprinted with permission from the Lepanto Institute.

Secure a home for canceled priests: LifeFunder