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Monday, October 15, 2018

Good Pope Paul Went Out One Night

Written by  Fr. Celatus
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The Last Word has a confession to make: we start listening to Christmas carols long before Christmas. How long? Nearly three months. To be precise, we listened to our first Christmas carol on September 28, the Feast of Saint Wenceslaus. Just hearing the name of the King triggers the tune of the Christmas carol that bears the name of the Saint in our head: Good King Wenceslaus looked out, on the Feast of Stephen…

That popular carol, composed in the nineteenth century, is based upon the corporal works of mercy for which the young Duke, Wenceslaus, was famous, as recorded in an ancient hagiography on the Saint:

…rising every night from his noble bed, with bare feet and only one chamberlain, he went around to God's churches and gave alms generously to widows, orphans, those in prison and afflicted by every difficulty, so much so that he was considered, not a prince, but father of all the wretched

With this background of the Saint in mind, read now the story of the Good King in the lyrics of the carol:

Good King Wenceslas looked out
On the feast of Stephen
When the snow lay round about
Deep and crisp and even
Brightly shone the moon that night
Though the frost was cruel
When a poor man came in sight
Gath'ring winter fuel

"Hither, page, and stand by me
If thou know'st it, telling
Yonder peasant, who is he?
Where and what his dwelling?"
"Sire, he lives a good league hence
Underneath the mountain
Right against the forest fence
By Saint Agnes' fountain."

"Bring me flesh and bring me wine
Bring me pine logs hither
Thou and I will see him dine
When we bear him thither."
Page and monarch forth they went
Forth they went together
Through the rude wind's wild lament
And the bitter weather

"Sire, the night is darker now
And the wind blows stronger
Fails my heart, I know not how,
I can go no longer."
"Mark my footsteps, my good page
Tread thou in them boldly
Thou shalt find the winter's rage
Freeze thy blood less coldly."

In his master's steps he trod
Where the snow lay dinted
Heat was in the very sod
Which the Saint had printed
Therefore, Christian men, be sure
Wealth or rank possessing
Ye who now will bless the poor
Shall yourselves find blessing.

Sacrificial charity expressed in corporal works of mercy is not the only saintly virtue for which this good King is remembered. At the tender age of 18 Wenceslaus assumed the throne and set about immediately building churches, he recalled priests from exile, restored the Latin Liturgy, initiated missionary activity, and he sought in every way possible to promote the Kingship of Christ here on Earth rather than his own.

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For his faith and good works, King Wenceslaus was murdered on his way to Holy Mass by his brother.

I cannot help but think how different Saint Wenceslaus was in his words and actions from the most recent addition to the list of canonically approved saints, Pope Paul VI. Due in very large part to the disastrous pontificate of this man, rather than building churches, they have been steadily closed; rather than bringing priests back from exile, clergy beyond counting have abandoned their ministry; rather than restoring the Latin Liturgy, he replaced it with a vernacular aberration; rather than initiating missionary activity, a false ecumenism has all but killed evangelization; rather than promoting the Kingship of Christ here on Earth,  the Council approved by him has prioritized distorted human rights over submission to divine authority.

For traditional Catholics the canonization of Pope Paul VI will have about as much relevance as the foolish and fallible promulgation of the Luminous Mysteries. Still, in an ecumenical gesture to those who applaud the accomplishments of this man, we offer this revision of the Good King Wenceslaus hymn on the occasion of his canonization. Simply put these lyrics to the traditional tune of the Christmas carol:

Poor Pope Paul the Sixth looked out
On the Feast of Luther
Smoke of Satan round about
And the smell of sulfur
Barely shone the sun that day
As the darkness covered
Holy Mother Church and Bride
Hope and help for all mankind

First he changed the Holy Mass
Next he changed her Teachings
Then he changed the Sacraments
Done while we were sleeping
How can Christ allow all this
From the chair of Peter
Maybe this is punishment
For our sins and failings

In his footsteps many trod
On the path to ruin
Heedless of the harm to all
That their deeds were doing
Heretics and hapless fools
Modernists and madmen
Changing evil into good
Like their father Satan

Now we have a bigger fraud
On the chair of Peter
Hates the Holy Catholic Church
Loves to bring Her under
Is he pope or is he fraud
We are left to wonder
Will the Lord have mercy soon
How long must we suffer 

Therefore remnant men be sure
You who hold to true Faith
You who now still persevere
Shall yourselves find blessing.
Popes will come and popes will go
Some we wish quite sooner
Pray to God for our release
From this papal looner.

 

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