If anyone is confused as to what the above title means here is the download:
Fish Eaters is a Catholic website: “The purpose of this site is to bring souls to the one, holy, Catholic, and apostolic Church — the Church headed by Christ and built on the rock of St. Peter, the Church against which the gates of Hell will never prevail. Fish Eaters strives to do this by showing Protestants the errors of Protestantism and by teaching Catholics to recognize what is and isn’t Catholic. Fish Eaters wishes to inspire Catholics to do all in their power:
to fight to preserve the traditional Mass and all the other traditional Sacramental rites
to learn, teach, and guard every last drop of the Faith in the same way that Catholics have learned, taught, and guarded it for two millennia
to practice traditional devotions and popular customs that have always served to build strong Catholic families and communities, and to keep us all close to Christ”
It has a WIDE range of fantastic information, and has informed me on the basis and tidbits of my Catholic Faith much more than any “LifeTeen” or “Word on Fire” has even done.
The well-known Catholic Culture.org gave the above website a somewhat terrible, and quite unfair review; and I will prove them quite wrong, and hopefully clear up any misconceptions any person may have about Fish Eaters.
To be clear; this is not just being down because I agree with the views of Fish-Eaters, but because I feel the need to clarify and “clear the air” concerning this website. It has been badly reviewed by a popular Catholic website and this needs to be mended.
So here is the Review:
Website Review: Fish Eaters
A review based on: http://fisheaters.com
Fish Eaters is a personal apologetical site which targets non-Catholic Christians, converts and Catholics. Its stated purpose is to bring people to Christ and His Church. The statement of faith posted by the webmaster is excellent but is seriously undermined by the implicit and explicit rejection of the “New Mass” (The Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite) and Vatican Council II.
The section on Being Catholic has a wealth of information and is tastefully illustrated.
First Evaluated: 10/23/2002; Last Updated: 07/04/2011
- Fidelity: Danger!
- Resources: Excellent
- Useability: Excellent
- Many good links, including reference tools, e-zines and portals, Catholic radio, and politics & culture Resources
- Series of questions for non-Catholics to pray about, ask themselves, and research Resources
- On-site apologetics resources Resources
- Conversion Stories in Real Audio Resources
- Being Catholic: Traditions, Customs, Prayers, etc. section Resources
- Fidelity: The site as a whole implicitly and explicitly rejects the Ordinary Form (Novus Ordo) Mass.
- Fidelity: All of the material and resources offered are pre-Vatican II.
- Fidelity: A “Dictionary of Dissent”
- Fidelity: Link to SSPX Open Letter to Confused Catholics by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre
- Fidelity: Link to a favorable review of the book, The Great Facade by Christopher A. Ferrara and Thomas E. Woods, Jr.
- Fidelity: Link to The True Notion of Tradition on the SSPX website
Now, I will show you exactly what is wrong with this review.
THEY SAY: The statement of faith posted by the webmaster is excellent but is seriously undermined by the implicit and explicit rejection of the “New Mass” (The Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite) and Vatican Council II.
WHAT REALLY HAPPENED: In the statement of faith made by Fish-Eaters, you can plainly see the below statements that the New Mass (The Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite), and Vatican II are neither explicitly or implicitly rejected:
- I believe Vatican II was a valid, pastoral Ecumenical Council convoked and approbated by true Popes. I believe the documents from the Council were very badly and ambiguously written and that said documents need to be interpreted only in light of tradition instead of — as is all too often the case now — by the media and those with a revolutionary agenda. I believe that this nebulous “spirit of Vatican II” spoken of by people who are always pushing for change is an evil “spirit” that has damaged the human element of the Church to such a degree that many parishes are almost unrecognizable as Catholic ones. I believe the human element of the Church is in a state of very grave crisis.I believe that all Masses offered by validly ordained priests using valid matter, form, and intent, are valid Masses, including the vastly inferior new rite of the Mass. I believe Catholics should do all in their power to attend the traditional form of the Mass if it’s available, and if it isn’t available, they should rally their priests to make it so, as our priests are called upon to do by the previous Holy Father’s Summorum Pontificum. (note; this being Pope Benedict XVI)
I pray for the restoration of the human element of Holy Mother Church and a return to a Tradition (all of it — Sacramental rites, doctrine handed down through sound catechesis, customs, many disciplines) enlivened by true charity and marked by prudence, the forgotten virtue. I pray also for solidly Catholic families headed by strong, caring men, and nurtured by strong women who are treated with the same respect and dignity with which Our Lord treated Our Lady.
There is nothing in this statement of faith that is against the Magisterium of the Faith, in fact it has more sound faith than many ‘Catholic’ organizations I have seen around.
THEY SAY: Weaknesses
- Fidelity: The site as a whole implicitly and explicitly rejects the Ordinary Form (Novus Ordo) Mass.
WHAT REALLY HAPPENED:
The example that is given for the above statement is below;
“In this section, I focus solely on the traditional Latin Mass based on the Missal of 1962 which is used by most traditional priests (including the F.S.S.P. and the S.S.P.X.). After much study, I’ve come to the conclusion that, validity issues aside, the “Novus Ordo Mass” is tragically flawed, something my instincts and “common sense” have told me since I was a child. The very name of this Mass — “Novus Ordo,” i.e., “New Order” — should make anyone with a true Catholic nature cringe, and its effects are so incredibly sad it almost hurts to think about it.
The “Novus Ordo,” whether offered in English or Latin, is a violent break with Tradition, directly responsible, in part, for the great loss of faith which followed its publication. “Lex credendi legem statuat supplicandi” — let the rule of belief determine the rule of prayer” is the rule of liturgy — but the prayers of the Novus Ordo, designed to make Protestants comfortable with the Mass, express Protestant belief not by what it says, but by what it fails to say — that is, by its omissions — and serve to lead us to believe as Protestants in that it practically nullifies the experience of the realities of the Sacrifice and the priesthood. The Novus Ordo — not so much for what it is inherently, but for what it isn’t, for what it lacks — appears as the “Mass of Cain,” arrogantly bringing his own works to God; the ancient Mass is the “Mass of Abel,” who humbly offered God a sacrifice — a lamb that prefigured the Passover lamb which, in turn, prefigured the Lamb Who takes away the sins of the world, Whose offering of Himself to us is eternal.
The stripping away of the signs and symbols of the Mystery, the eradication of the poetic, the blurring of the line between the ordained and common priesthoods, music that typically ranges from the banal to the offensive, the ignoring of Gregorian chant, the failure to retain our sacred language, the “busy-ness,” the dearth of silence, and, most of all, the almost total lack of emphasis on the Sacrifice — to not be offended by these things, especially after having studied the purpose of the Mass and our worship’s relationship to our belief, is to be either ignorant of or ill-willed toward the Catholic Faith. ”
If Catholic Culture would have looked into what actually happened during Vatican II, including Arch-Bishop Bugnini who headed it, they wouldn’t speak so vehemently at someone who takes great care when looking at the New Mass. (See any talks by Bella Dodd, or Alice or Dietrich Von Hildebrand’s concerning the Church at this time.)
The implicit and explicit changes that took place from what the Novus Ordo is supposed to be (see “Spirit of the Liturgy” by Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, and the actual Vatican II documents, Cardinal Robert Sarah…), versus the terrible New Order mass that is being displayed in too many parts of the world (Gay Masses, Clown Masses, ect.) Just ONE example being the complete and total wipe off Latin in the Novus Ordo. “Many ask why the devil hates Latin and why it is used in Exorcisms and has power over the devil. The answer is that ecclesiastical Latin is a sacred language that was reserved only for the divine service of the Church of God, in prayer and in the Sacraments. (There is classic Roman Latin of Cicero that is also studied today. But it is significantly different for the sacred ecclesiastical Latin.) On the other hand, ecclesiastical Latin is only used for holy things, and is a dead language that does not change and has been reserved for centuries just for prayer, (especially the Latin Mass). For this reason, the devil hates it.” —
Now; the “example passage” Catholic Culture provided, to use as an example of “‘implicitly’ and ‘explicitly’ rejecting the Novus Ordo” is actually just a part of the entire “introduction.” The part they left out actually talks about one of the problems with the Novus Ordo is that it fails to conform itself with Vatican II and the Council of Trent documents, and the fact that its own rubrics are so often abused !
Here is what Catholic Culture left out;
“Further problems with the Novus Ordo are the International Committee on English in the Liturgy’s (ICEL) translations of the text, its failure to conform itself with Vatican II and Council of Trent documents, and the fact that its own pale rubrics are so often abused.
Abuses not inherent in the 1970 Missal but which predominate thanks to the “the spirit of Vatican II” — the use of altar girls which destroys priestly vocations, not kneeling to receive the Eucharist, lay people taking the Blessed Sacrament in their hands, lay people (usually women) swarming the sanctuary in perfect imitation of Korah (see Jude 1:11 and Numbers 16) — there is no defense for these practices. None. But they are so prevalent as to be almost universal.
Even celebrated according to its rubrics (and God bless those few, well-intentioned priests who even try to do that), the New Mass is a Protestantized (not Protestant) “service” up to its core, with an abbreviated Kyrie thrown in. Even with the few words retained in the Consecration to keep it valid, its semblance to the ancient Mass is like that of a dry twig to a flowering tree. What the modernists (may God have mercy on them!) have done to the Church is the liturgical equivalent of whitewashing the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, and this has happened with all of the sacramental rites, from Baptism to Unction.
Each Catholic must study this issue prayerfully. And each must know that believing — knowing — that the 1970 Mass was an extremely bad idea, a break with Sacred Tradition, an unlovely thing that leads to heterodoxy and disbelief — is not “disobedient” and does not make you a “bad Catholic”; it makes you an informed one with eyes to see. Saying these things aloud does not make you “dissident” or “schismatic”; it makes you a warrior for the true Faith.
Now, I can imagine a dialogue with some of you who are new to the concept of “liturgy” — and many who have been Catholic for years but “really like” or are at least not bothered by the Novus Ordo Mass:
“What’s the big deal?”
The ‘big deal’ is that Jesus Christ glorified becomes really and truly present at the Mass — Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity — under the appearances of bread and wine, in fulfillment of all the Old Testament sacrifices and as predicted by the Prophet Malachias. He is then offered up to appease the Father ‘s wrath at our sins and for the remission of those sins; Calvary is made present before our eyes. You either believe this and are Catholic, or you do not believe this and are not Catholic. If you believe this and are Catholic, you will want everyone else to believe this, too. You should, therefore, want liturgy that points to the reality of this Mystery in every way possible, and should be extremely bothered by liturgy that is banal, ugly, sterile, offensive, and that may as well have been designed to lead to heterodoxy.
The Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is our greatest prayer to God and our most solemn act of worship; should’t we give Him our very best?
Please read An Open Letter to the Church Renouncing my Service on I.C.E.L. by Father Stephen Somerville, STL., who worked with the “ICEL,” the Committee that translated the Novus Ordo Mass into English.”
…. do I need to explain this further? Fish-Eaters are not rejecting the Novus Ordo or Vatican II… actually they reject the fact that the Novus Ordo has been so twisted and misused in such a diabolical way (Clown masses? Gay Masses?) that to think that what is being done to the True Sacrifice of Jesus on the Cross, in atonement for our sins… is just terrible! AND I AGREE. We all should! Fish-Eaters tells us that this is something we must pray about; considering “The Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is our greatest prayer to God and our most solemn act of worship”
THEY SAY: Fidelity: All of the material and resources offered are pre-Vatican II.
(Here is their example:) A telling example of this is in the section dedicated to the writings of the Popes. Though some of the major encyclicals pre-1963 are included, not a single document since the Council is included. The same is true of other resources. The only exception to this is the documents of the Council itself, Pope John XXIII Vatican II Opening Address, Pope John Paul II Ecclesia Dei and Pope Benedict XVI Summorum Pontificum and the Decree lifting the SSPX bishops’ excommunications.
WHAT REALLY HAPPENED:
First of all, there is absolutely nothing wrong, or anti-Catholic or anti-Pope or anti-Magisterium about pre-Vatican II !! It is not as if the Catholic Church was suddenly “re-born” after Vatican II and is now a different Church! Pre-Vatican II is STILL VALID.
[T]he Roman Missal promulgated by St. Pius V and reissued by Bl. John XXIII is to be considered as an extraordinary expression of that same ‘Lex orandi,’ and must be given due honour for its venerable and ancient usage. (Apostolic Letter “Summorum Pontificum” issued Motu Proprio, July 7, 2007)
It is the truth revealed through Scripture and Tradition and articulated by the Church’s Magisterium that sets us free. (Pope Benedict XVI, Address to Bishops of England and Wales, February 1, 2010)
“For the correct formation of the liturgical conscience, it is important to stop condemning the liturgical form as it was known up to 1970. Those, who at this moment defend the validity of the traditional liturgy or its continued use, are treated like lepers: all tolerance for them ceases to exist. In the whole history of the Church we have never before seen such intolerance manifested! This stance shows a contempt and scorn for the whole history of the Church. How can we ever trust the Church, with such a point of departure? I have never been able to understand why so many bishops, with no plausible reason, have given themselves over to this law of intolerance and thereby work against the needed reconciliation within the Church.” [Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger: “God and the world” (2002)]
“A great deal of Catholic liturgists seem to have come to the conclusion that Luther, rather than Trent, was substantially right in the 16th century debates…
It is only against this background – the de facto rejection of the authority of the Council of Trent – that the bitterness of the fight against allowing the celebration of the Holy Mass according to the Missal of 1962 …. can be understood.
The possibility of celebrating the Mass in that way provides the strongest, and therefore most unbearable, proof against the opinion of those, who believe that the faith in the Holy Eucharist, as formulated by Trent, has lost its validity.” [Cardinal Ratzinger: Lecture held during the Liturgical Conference at Fontcombault (2001)]
Fish Eaters states in an article on their site, “Traditional Catholicism 101” – Of this much I will assure you, Catholic: if you get your Catholic education from newspapers, you are doomed. You must learn to be able to recognize what is and is not an infallible statement, learn to recognize the different levels of the Magisterium, and then seek out official documents and attribute to them proper authoritativeness. If you don’t, you will be forever confused and forever wrong about what the Church teaches. “
How “dangerous”, a Catholic website that encourages Catholics to learn their Catholic faith well-enough to tell what is official, infallible, or not……
THEY SAID: Fidelity: Link to SSPX Open Letter to Confused Catholics by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre
WHAT REALLY HAPPENED:
Here are 6 examples of Fish-Eaters not being against the Pope, or dissenters.
- Scroll down to the bottom of the page and it says in big words (perhaps not big enough?)
Posting offsite links above does not imply complete agreement with the sites or their authors.
2. In the article, ‘Traditional Catholicism 101‘ they state;
I am not a sedevacantist and have nothing to do with the S.S.P.X. or any independent priests. I attend Masses offered by traditionalist priests inside normal diocesan structures (F.S.S.P.). This page is intended to act as an unbiased introduction to the traditionalist “movement” in general, and not, because they are mentioned, as support for any of the various types of traditionalists other than those who remain faithful to the Holy Father.
3. The Fish-Eaters webmaster states, “I claim no ecclesiastical authority or special credentials other than those of a laywoman who loves and studies the Faith and strives to pass it on accurately. I encourage guests to read Catechisms, papal documents, and other works to assure themselves of the site’s accuracy.” “This site, which has been on the internet since 1996, is often used in RCIA programs, and is linked to from the websites of various parishes and chapels, cleric-run blogs and websites, the Catholic Encyclopedia, Latin Mass Magazine, Our Sunday Visitor, The Revealer and other credible, scholarly resources. It has been cited in Catholic Digest Magazine, dioscesan and parish newsletters, offerings from Circle Media, Inc. (publishers of the National Catholic Register and Faith and Familymagazine), newspapers, and other such printed materials.”
4. In the Linking policy Fish-Eaters states; “I don’t fall for the idea that a given work is verboten simply because its author may have written other works that are questionable. That is an ad hominem fallacy and lacks charity; even the Index of Forbidden Books only banned individual works, not people or everything a given person ever wrote. If a lesbian atheist (like Camille Paglia, whose writings I often enjoy in spite of frequent obvious and vehement disagreement) writes a relevant, inoffensive essay, if Famous Apologist X who might have an animus against “trads” writes an article that any Catholic would find beneficial, if a dunderhead pundit who writes 99% nonsense comes up with a good one for once, etc., I might well link to the articles in question.
Essays, like art, stand on their own, apart from the writers and artists involved, and they should be judged on their own merits (to think otherwise is to romanticize art and make it only about personal expression rather than about the True, Good, or Beautiful). The arrogant, Manichaean idea that there’s an “us” — the good, holy people who err not — and a “them” — the baddies who can do no good and speak no Truth — has got to stop. I loathe it when I see it among trad-bashers, and I loathe it when I see it among trads. Most people are good and bad, and do good and bad. This Truth informs my linking policy and I’m sticking to it, even if to the chagrin of those Catholics who can’t fathom why I’d link to an article in the SSPX’s Angelus, or of some trads who hate that I’d link to an article written by “Mr. Apologist Who Hates Trads,” and so on. At this site’s Offsite Links for Catholics and For Catholics pages, I try to provide information from which I believe all Catholics would benefit if they’d get over their holier-than-thou, “he’s one of them!” gang-banging mentalities. I write — and link — for the typically educated, reasonable person of average intelligence whom I trust has read a few Catechisms and has some sort of clue as to how to separate the wheat from the chaff.”
5. In the Linking policy Fish-Eaters states; I don’t recommend religious orders or Mass locations, nor do I advise others as to which priestly fraternities to support. I can only offer this link that might help you find existing traditional Masses.
6. Before entering the DISCUSSION FORUM On Fish-Eaters website this is stated, ”
Please know that any given opinion expressed by folks
at the discussion forum is not (necessarily) the
“opinion of the Fish Eaters website” or its writer!
This forum is for traditional Catholics who worship inside diocesan structures (FSSP, ICK, etc.), some of whom may disagree with each other about various matters. No poster’s opinions should be mistaken for those of FishEaters. For the FishEaters statement of faith, see here, on FishEaters’ Contact Page. Traditionalists who worship outside diocesan structures (SSPX, etc.) are most welcome and are to be treated charitably here.
PLEASE NOTE that toxic trads are not welcome to post here. This is a place for people who are traditional Catholics who truly love Our Lord and are allowing Him to change their hearts.”
I am truly appalled (though not very surprised) at this constant criticizing, & condemnation of any Catholic person or organization that promotes the True Faith, and the learning of the Faith and its teachings to point of knowing what is right or wrong. This is the Church of God, not ours. We should have the proper Christian dignity to at least do our research well-enough that we do not commit a sin of “Rash Judgement”, “Gossip”, “Slander” “backbiting” ….
Honestly, if you want to blast Fish_Eaters for being dissenters or Anti-Catholics, try matching up their views against any Sedevacantists, and you will see a HUGE difference, number one being the faithfulness to the Magisterium on Fish-Eaters part.
“A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth that which is evil. For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.” (Luke 6:45)
Until next time, God bless and keep it Trad!