Thursday, May 10, 2007

Three kinds of slavery

In his classic work The Secret of Mary, St. Louis Marie de Montfort explains that, "..there are three kinds of slavery. There is, first, a slavery based on nature. All men, good and bad alike, are slaves of God in this sense. The second is a slavery of compulsion. The devils and the damned are slaves of God in this second sense. The third is a slavery of love and free choice. This is the kind chosen by one who consecrates himself to God through Mary, and this is the most perfect way for us human beings to give ourselves to God, our Creator." (The Secret of Mary, No. 32, Montfort Publications, p. 271).

And, in The Love of Eternal Wisdom, Montfort says, "For exterior and voluntary mortification to be profitable, it must be accompanied by the mortifying of the judgment and the will through holy obedience, because without this obedience all mortification is spoiled by self-will and often becomes more pleasing to the devil than to God...By holy obedience we do away with self-love, which spoils everything; by obedience the smallest of our actions become meritorious. It protects us from illusions of the devil, enables us to overcome our enemies, and brings us surely, as though while sleeping, into the harbor of salvation." (The Love of Eternal Wisdom, No. 202, Montfort Publications, p. 106).

For Montfort then, slavery to the Immaculate Heart of Mary must be characterized by holy obedience. This great marian saint always remained obedient to his superiors. In what became known as the Pontchateau Affair:, Montfort spent an entire year building a Calvary scene only to be ordered by his Bishop to tear it down. He immediately obeyed.

For Montfort, disobedience to a Bishop of Christ's Church would have been unthinkable. This point is lost on a small group of cultists based in Richmond, New Hampshire who call themselves the Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. This group operates within the Diocese of Manchester, New Hampshire without the permission of the local Bishop - The Most Rev. John B. McCormack - and is not in union with the Diocese. They oppose the Magisterial teaching of the Catholic Church regarding the correct interpretation of the Dogma: Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus while engaging in anti-Semitism. They have also stated their intention (publically) of seeking ordination for one of their members without dimissorial letters - canonical permission.

Montfort would have had nothing to do with such a work. He would have seen it as a kind of slavery, but not to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. But rather to belial. For Montfort, slavery to the Immaculate Heart of Mary was defined by love and obedience. And there is nothing loving about anti-Semitism. There is nothing of obedience in contradicting the teaching of the Church and operating without the permission of one's Bishop.


Anonymous said...

Why is it, then, that Andre Marie and the Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary insist they are in communion with the Roman Catholic Church and they continue to say this. What ends up happening is continued misquotes by the press using the word Catholic or the words Roman Catholic in print. This must be refuted. Can you help?

Paul Anthony Melanson said...

I could insist that I am Napoleon, but that wouldn't make me Napoleon. It would suggest something else.

The following was noted at the Keene Sentinel Talkback site:

"...the Diocese of Manchester noted on September 29, 1999:

'The St Benedict Center is located in Richmond, NH, and is therefore within the boundaries of the Diocese of Manchester. However, the Center is in a canonically 'irregular' status with the Bishop of Manchester. Basically, the Center refuses to operate within the authority of the bishop and, therefore, operates outside the legitimate authority of the church. There are two reasons for this, outlined in a 1995 letter written by then Msgr. (now Auxiliary Bishop) Francis J. Christian:

1. They continue to refuse to accept the understanding of the formula, 'No Salvation Outside The Church.'
2. They are canonically irregular in regard to the church because they are present in the diocese without permission of the bishop and are running ministries without the permission of the bishop and because they have no legitimate authority who has oversight over them and to whom they are responsible.'"

Paul Anthony Melanson said...

The Boston Globe ran an article entitled "Cherishing an Older Catholicism," which included the following paragraph:

"The St. Benedict Center has no relationship with the Diocese of Manchester, and Bishop [John B.] McCormack has not given them permission to do ministry in New Hampshire," said Diane Murphy Quinlan, the diocese's vice chancellor. "They are not in union with the church."

The Diocese has spoken. The SBC cult is not in union with the Church and has no permission from the Bishop to operate within the Diocese of Manchester.

"Brother" Andre Marie (and let's not forget this man has been photographed in a priestly biretta and vestments and standing next to a schismatic "Bishop") may continue to insist that his cult is in "communion" with the Church, but it is not. He does not speak for the Church.

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