John 7:13 all over again…
“For Fear of the Jews”:
The Novus Ordo Good Friday Prayer
The Roman Catholic Church, in her loving kindness and care, having been entrusted by the Son of God with the mission to preach the Gospel and convert all men to the true Faith (see Mk 16:15-16), greatly desires the salvation of all people. Knowing that man was not made for this world, but for eternal beatitude in Heaven, she lovingly seeks to detach him from the state of sin he finds himself in and lift him up to the life of Faith and virtue through the grace merited by our Lord Jesus Christ, who declared: “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No man cometh to the Father, but by me” (Jn 14:6).
Alas, to this day, the Jews do not acknowledge our Lord Jesus Christ, their own Messias who came to redeem them, to whom all the prophets in the Old Testament point, and whose very Passion was foretold so beautifully in so many ways, most strikingly by the prophet Isaias and also in the book of Wisdom:
Let us therefore lie in wait for the just, because he is not for our turn, and he is contrary to our doings, and upbraideth us with transgressions of the law, and divulgeth against us the sins of our way of life. He boasteth that he hath the knowledge of God, and calleth himself the son of God. He is become a censurer of our thoughts. He is grievous unto us, even to behold: for his life is not like other men’ s, and his ways are very different.
We are esteemed by him as triflers, and he abstaineth from our ways as from filthiness, and he preferreth the latter end of the just, and glorieth that he hath God for his father. Let us see then if his words be true, and let us prove what shall happen to him, and we shall know what his end shall be. For if he be the true son of God, he will defend him, and will deliver him from the hands of his enemies. Let us examine him by outrages and tortures, that we may know his meekness and try his patience. Let us condemn him to a most shameful death: for there shall be respect had unto him by his words.
These things they thought, and were deceived: for their own malice blinded them. And they knew not the secrets of God, nor hoped for the wages of justice, nor esteemed the honour of holy souls. For God created man incorruptible, and to the image of his own likeness he made him. But by the envy of the devil, death came into the world: And they follow him that are of his side.
In his First Epistle to the Corinthians, St. Paul the Apostle, himself a convert from Judaism, said: “But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews indeed a stumblingblock, and unto the Gentiles foolishness: But unto them that are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God” (1 Cor 1:23-24).
Our Divine Lord Himself emphasized that His coming was, in the first instance, for the Jews, since they had been chosen by God as the people to whom He would entrust His law, His teaching, and His prophecies: “I was not sent but to the sheep that are lost of the house of Israel” (Mt 15:24; cf. Jn 4:22). He greatly lamented the fact that His own stubbornly denied Him: “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them that are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered together thy children, as the hen doth gather her chickens under her wings, and thou wouldest not?” (Mt 23:37).
With the Death of our Lord Jesus Christ and His Holy Resurrection, the Old Covenant came to an end, because its mission, its purpose, had been fulfilled, and the New Covenant was now established in the Blood of Christ. In no wise was this more strikingly represented than by the tearing of the temple veil when Christ breathed His last upon the Cross: “And Jesus again crying with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost. And behold the veil of the temple was rent in two from the top even to the bottom, and the earth quaked, and the rocks were rent” (Mt 27:50-51). St. Paul very clearly stated that with the introduction of the New Covenant, the Old Covenant ended: “in Christ it is made void” (2 Cor 3:14); and further: “he taketh away the first, that he may establish that which followeth” (Heb 10:9).
The 15th century Council of Florence echoes this in its own teaching:
[This council] firmly believes, professes, and teaches that the matter pertaining to the law of the Old Testament, of the Mosiac law, which are divided into ceremonies, sacred rites, sacrifices, and sacraments, because they were established to signify something in the future, although they were suited to the divine worship at that time, after our Lord’s coming had been signified by them, ceased, and the sacraments of the New Testament began; and that whoever, even after the passion, placed hope in these matters of the law and submitted himself to them as necessary for salvation, as if faith in Christ could not save without them, sinned mortally. Yet it does not deny that after the passion of Christ up to the promulgation of the Gospel they could have been observed until they were believed to be in no way necessary for salvation; but after the promulgation of the Gospel it asserts that they cannot be observed without the loss of eternal salvation. All, therefore, who after that time observe circumcision and the Sabbath and the other requirements of the law, it declares alien to the Christian faith and not in the least fit to participate in eternal salvation, unless someday they recover from these errors.
(Council of Florence, Decree Cantate Domino ; Denz. 712; underlining added.)
Catholic teaching on this matter is really not difficult to understand: Christ established the New Covenant to fulfill the Old; by means of this, the Old Covenant ceased, and salvation can now only be had in Christ, in this New Covenant.
For this very reason, Holy Mother Church offers public solemn prayers, every year on Good Friday, for the conversion of all non-Catholics to the True Faith. This includes not only schismatics and heretics but also Jews and pagans. Even people who are not Catholic and disagree with the Catholic Church, can nevertheless see that it makes sense for an institution that proclaims itself to be the only Ark of Salvation to offer public prayers for the conversion of all those who are not yet her members.
In the Vatican II Sect, however, things are a bit different.
Since John XXIII and the Second Vatican Council, the institution masquerading as the “Catholic Church” has embraced a different gospel, one in which the Jews of our day — that is, the members of apostate Judaism — are at least de facto exempt from the obligation to convert to Christ and His Church, and instead may find salvation in their own (alleged) covenant with God.
This new teaching, this heresy, is found not only in various Novus Ordo documents but also, and most importantly, in the New Church’s praxis with regard to the Jews. This is clearly seen in the fact that the Catholic Good Friday prayer for the conversion of the Jews has been replaced by the Novus Ordo Sect with a prayer that asks God to bless them so they would continue faithfully [sic] on their path.
Let’s take a look at how the Catholic Good Friday prayer for the conversion of the Jews differs from the Novus Ordo prayer:
CATHOLIC PRAYER (before Vatican II):
Let us pray likewise for the faithless Jews: that the Lord our God may remove from their hearts the veil of unbelief: and that they may come to the knowledge of Jesus Christ our Lord.
Let us pray.
Almighty and eternal God, who drivest not away from Thy mercy even the faithless Jews: hear our prayers, which we offer for the blindness of that people: that acknowledging the light of Thy truth, which is Christ, they may be delivered from their darkness. Through the same Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God. world without end.
What a beautiful, charitable petition to Almighty God — that the Jews, who so far have failed to recognize their Savior, would, by the assistance of God’s grace, come to embrace Him, so that they may also become partakers of Eternal Life. Why would anyone seek to change it?
Now let’s look at the Modernist Novus Ordo prayer:
NOVUS ORDO PRAYER (after Vatican II):
Let us pray
For the Jewish people,
The first to hear the word of God,
That they may continue to grow in the love of his name
And in faithfulness to his covenant.
Almighty and eternal God,
Long ago you gave your promise to Abraham and his posterity.
Listen to your Church as we pray
That the people you first made your own
May arrive at the fullness of redemption.
We ask this through Christ our Lord.
The contrast is striking. The Novus Ordo prayer has completely falsified the Catholic understanding of the Old and New Covenants and distorted the position of apostate Judaism. The “faithless Jews” (perfidis Judaeis) are no longer represented as lacking the very Faith which alone can allow them to participate in the Redemption and Eternal Life (cf. Jn 8:24; Heb 11:6). Instead, they are now presented as that people to whom God first revealed Himself, which, though correct from a carnal-historical perspective (today’s Jews being the fleshly descendants of Abraham), is not true from the more important, spiritual-theological perspective (today’s Jews not being the spiritual successors of Abraham and the people of the Old Testament).
St. John the Baptist warned the Jews of his day not to think of themselves as being on the path to salvation simply because they are the seed of Abraham: “Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of penance; and do not begin to say, We have Abraham for our father. For I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children to Abraham” (Lk 3:8). And our Blessed Lord Himself added: “It is the spirit that quickeneth: the flesh profiteth nothing” (Jn 6:64).
It is, therefore, terribly misleading to present today’s Jews as though their mere fleshly status of being the descendants of Abraham gave them any sort of spiritual favor. St. Paul underscores this in his letter to the Romans by drawing an analogy with an olive tree: “The branches were broken off … because of unbelief they were broken off” (Rom 11:19-20). And he adds a warning that just as the Jews “were broken off”, so too the Gentiles will be if they do not abide in sanctifying grace in the New Covenant: “otherwise thou also shalt be cut off” (v. 22).
But the novel Novus Ordo prayer for the Jews isn’t finished yet. It proceeds to utter unmistakable heresy, petitioning God to allow today’s Jews to “continue to grow … in faithfulness to His covenant.”
What covenant? There is no covenant between God and today’s Jews to which they could possibly be faithful, much less continue to do so. But this Modernist prayer implies the opposite: that the Jews do have a covenant, and that they are already faithful to it up to a certain extent, and that Catholics merely pray that they will grow in this faithfulness.
But is this so? Not at all.
This case in point shows the difference in theology between the Catholic Church and the Novus Ordo Sect. Of course, if you talk to a “conservative” Novus Ordo apologist, you will be told that you must simply “understand” this prayer in the “right” way, and that is (so they will say) that we pray that the Jews, who believe themselves to be in the Old Covenant, simply become truly faithful to it, because this is the very Covenant that points to Christ and the New Covenant as its own fulfillment, and so it is in being truly faithful to the Old that they will come to realize the validity of the New. Thus, they argue, there is really no difference between the old and the new Good Friday prayer for the Jews.
Masterful! Alas, it has nothing to do with reality.
First, if there is no difference between the old and the new prayer, why is it that the Jews have vigorously condemned the traditional Catholic petition but not the Modernist Novus Ordo one? See the following link for a reality check:
Second, if the Jews do not currently have a covenant with God, objectively speaking and regardless of whether they “believe” themselves to have one, how can we ask God to have them continue to be faithful to that non-existing covenant? It will not do to say that they have a covenant with God “in one sense” but not in another. For you either have a covenant with God or you don’t; you can’t have it both ways.
Third, how is it that we went from “faithless Jews” to Jews being “faithful”? Are they, or are they not, faithful to God’s teachings and revelation?
Fourth, if the Novus Ordo Good Friday prayer is soo Catholic and soo traditional, how come the Novus Ordo Sect does not have a mission to the Jews? Why is it that no one in the Vatican ever seeks to convert Jews (least of all Francis)? In fact, Francis’ own advisor on Judaism, the German Gregor Maria Hoff, has stated explicitly: “The Catholic Church operates no mission to the Jews” (source).
In 2006, Benedict XVI stated that the Jews are blest with “the favor of the God of the Covenant” (which covenant, by the way?) and that they, together with Christians, have a mission “to transmit the torch of the Ten Commandments and of hope to the younger generations” (source). Hope? What hope does Judaism offer, Fr. Ratzinger? The theological virtue of hope is only found in the True Religion, and that is the Catholic Church. There is no hope in false religions (cf. Pope Pius IX, Syllabus of Errors, n. 17), which should be rather obvious when you think about it. That’s precisely why God revealed Himself to us in the true religion, first in the Old, then in the New Covenant.
On top of all this, of course, we must also consider the question why the Good Friday prayer for the Jews was changed in the first place. The answer, of course, is because it needed to be brought in line with the New Theology (=New Religion) of Vatican II. In its declaration Nostra Aetate, the Modernist council claimed that “the Jews should not be presented as rejected or accursed by God, as if this followed from the Holy Scriptures (Vatican II, Nostra Aetate, n. 4).
Not rejected by God? May we remind this robber synod that the human race itself has been an accursed race since sin entered into the world (see Gen 3:18; Rom 5:12), and that the only way out of this predicament is through the Redemption of Jesus Christ in the New Covenant? This is very basic stuff!
God’s rejection of the Jews as a people is amply proved from Holy Scripture and Catholic teaching in our lengthy post on Antipope Francis’ heresy regarding the Jews:
Finally, it is very telling that not only is there no mission to the Jews in the Novus Ordo Church; it even includes its interreligious dealings with Jews as part of its so-called Pontifical Council for the Promotion of Christian [!] Unity:
Relations with the Jews
On 22nd October 1974, Pope Paul VI established a Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews as an office distinct from but closely linked with the PCPCU [Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity]. In fact, the Cardinal President of the PCPCU presides over this Commission; the Secretary of the PCPCU is similarly its Vice-President. A full-time executive Secretary ensures the day-to-day running of the Commission. In order to implement the guidelines of the Second Vatican Council, the Commission published Guidelines and Suggestions for Implementing the Conciliar Declaration “Nostra aetate” n. 4, (1974) and Notes on the Correct Way to Present the Jews and Judaism in Preaching and Catechesis in the Roman Catholic Church (1985).
(“The Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity”, Profile at Vatican.va)
So, for the Vatican II Church, interreligious co-operation with Jews somehow falls under “promoting Christian unity.” Figure that one out.
All this is in striking contrast to the Church before Vatican II, which is nothing but the true and authentic Roman Catholic Church, which cannot change in her essence, and which, being the infallible, indefectible, and Spotless Bride of Christ cannot fail in her essential mission, which is leading all to salvation in Christ through her, for she is His Mystical Body:
…Christ our Lord instituted His Church as a perfect society, external of its nature and perceptible to the senses, which should carry on in the future the work of the salvation of the human race, under the leadership of one head, with an authority teaching by word of mouth, and by the ministry of the sacraments, the founts of heavenly grace….
This Church, after being so wonderfully instituted, could not, on the removal by death of its Founder and of the Apostles who were the pioneers in propagating it, be entirely extinguished and cease to be, for to it was given the commandment to lead all men, without distinction of time or place, to eternal salvation: “Going therefore, teach ye all nations.”[Mt 28:19]
In the continual carrying out of this task, will any element of strength and efficiency be wanting to the Church, when Christ Himself is perpetually present to it, according to His solemn promise: “Behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world?”[Mt 28:20] It follows then that the Church of Christ not only exists to-day and always, but is also exactly the same as it was in the time of the Apostles, unless we were to say, which God forbid, either that Christ our Lord could not effect His purpose, or that He erred when He asserted that the gates of hell should never prevail against it.[Mt 16:18]
(Pope Pius XI, Encyclical Mortalium Animos, n. 6; underlining and paragraph breaks added.)
For the Catholic Church to abandon her mission would be to say that Christ either lied or erred in His divine promise, both of which are impossible.
Consider also the following from Popes Pius IX, Leo XIII, and Pius XII on this point (all underlining added):
…[R]eligion itself can never totter and fall while this Chair [of St. Peter] remains intact, the Chair which rests on the rock which the proud gates of hell cannot overthrow and in which there is the whole and perfect solidity of the Christian religion.
(Pope Pius IX, Encyclical Inter Multiplices, n. 7)
For He who is the Spirit of Truth, inasmuch as He proceedeth both from the Father, who is the eternally True, and from the Son, who is the substantial Truth, receiveth from each both His essence and the fullness of all truth. This truth He communicates to His Church, guarding her by His all powerful help from ever falling into error, and aiding her to foster daily more and more the germs of divine doctrine and to make them fruitful for the welfare of the peoples. And since the welfare of the peoples, for which the Church was established, absolutely requires that this office should be continued for all time, the Holy Ghost perpetually supplies life and strength to preserve and increase the Church. “I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Paraclete, that He may abide with you for ever, the Spirit of Truth” John xiv., 16, 17).
(Pope Leo XIII, Encyclical Divinum Illud, n. 5)
Mother Church, Catholic, Roman, which has remained faithful to the constitution received from her Divine Founder, which still stands firm today on the solidity of the rock on which his will erected her, possesses in the primacy of Peter and of his legitimate [note well! —N.O.W.] successors the assurance, guaranteed by the divine promises, of keeping and transmitting inviolate and in all its integrity through centuries and millennia to the very end of time, the entire sum of truth and grace contained in the redemptive mission of Christ.
(Pope Pius XII, Allocution to the Consistory, June 2, 1944)
Clearly, the Church cannot fail in her divine mandate; she cannot suddenly — whether mistakenly or deliberately — reverse course and abandon her God-given duty to evangelize and seek the conversion and salvation of all human beings throughout the world until the end of time.
Even the Novus Ordo Sect itself admits that it is the Catholic Church’s essential mission to evangelize and convert all who are not yet her members: “‘…the task of evangelizing all people constitutes the essential mission of the Church.’ …Evangelizing is in fact the grace and vocation proper to the Church, her deepest identity. She exists in order to evangelize…” (Antipope Paul VI, “Apostolic Exhortation” Evangelii Nuntiandi, n. 14; italics added).
But if the Church’s essential task is to lead all men to Christ by converting all to a life of grace in her, the Mystical Body, then this obviously includes also the Jews, those who were “broken off” from the tree because of their rejection of Christ (cf. Rom 11:19). This is why Catholics pray for the conversion also of the Jews in specific, not only in the Good Friday liturgy, but also in the beautiful Act of Consecration of the Human Race to the Sacred Heart of Jesus: “Turn Thine eyes of mercy towards the children of the race, once Thy chosen people: of old they called down upon themselves the Blood of the Savior; may it now descend upon them a laver of redemption and of life” (source).
To deny them this greatest of graces, to keep from them the Good News of our Lord Jesus Christ and to pretend that they need not abandon their current false religion, their non-existing “covenant” with God, is the greatest disservice one can possibly render to the Jewish people, for whom our Blessed Lord died as well, and whom He lovingly desires to save (cf. Mk 4:21; 1 Tim 2:4).
And so we once again see the stark contrast between the Catholic Church, faithful Bride of Christ, and the Modernist Vatican II Sect, the unfaithful harlot. The latter has replaced the Catholic prayer for the conversion of the Jews with a heretical petition to make them grow in their supposed “faith” and “covenant with God.” By doing so, it has succumbed to the political correctness of our time, which sees every opposition to the Jewish religion as an unpardonable insult against the Jewish race.
In this manner, we can apply the words of the Evangelist from 2,000 years ago to the false Modernist church in our day: “Yet no man spoke openly of [Jesus], for fear of the Jews” (Jn 7:13).