Merry Christmas, your faith has been debunked

Merry Christmas, your faith has been debunked

It’s become a new Christian holiday tradition. Whether it’s Easter or Christmas we are bombarded with documentaries that try to debunk our faith. The latest is “Banned from the Bible” airing on the History Channel. The documentary treats the Gnostic Gospels and other pseudo-Scriptural books as equalivalent to the Bible, ignoring the supernatural reality of divine authorship, and even gives credence to some of the stories that these books purport to tell, including whether Jesus killed another child as a boy. It also opens the door to “new” books of the Bible being found.

All this does is sow doubt in people’s minds, making them more susceptible to baloney like “The DaVinci Code” and that awful movie from a few years ago, “Stigmata.” It makes people wonder what the Church is hiding from us and why, undermining people’s faith.

It’s curious that you don’t see the same debunking of, say, Islam. I wonder what would happen if the History Channel portrayed Mohammed in an unflattering light. We all know what would happen, so those courageous souls who make these documentaries attack nice safe targets like Christian belief. And then they air them on our holiest holidays, a further grind of the bootheel, another spit in the eye.

  • NEW YORK m, next summer, we are going to bring you to Seabrook, NH when the priests and deacons from St. Basil’s in Methuen celebrate the Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom on the beach, right at sunset.

    As Father Martin says:  “As the sun sets behind us, we raise the Eucharist, and the SON RISES!”

    And then the song to Mary, THEOTOKOS:

    Remembering our all-holy, immaculate, most blessed, and glorious Lady, Theotokos and Ever-virgin Mary with all the Saints, let us commend ourselves and each other and all our life unto Christ our God.
      Choir: To thee, O Lord.


      Meet it is in truth to bless thee, O Theotokos, who art ever blessed and all-blameless, and the Mother of our God. More honorable than the Cherubim and more glorious without compare than the Seraphim, who without corruption gavest birth to God the Word, verily Theotokos, we magnify thee.

    All this, with a couple of hundred LORD HAVE MERCY’s and TO THEE, OH LORD’s, and you will be hooked for life.

  • Daniel,

    Not to single you out, but that’s one of the things that pushes me away from the Tridentine Mass. I’m a contrarian by nature. If someone says that I must do something, I naturally resist.

    The NO is the normative Liturgy of the Latin rite. I have experienced it being celebrated in achingly beautiful ways. For me, and I repeat that this is a subjective response, the Tridentine would be like going to a museum or a zoo to see an endangered animal. The NO is the official form of the Liturgy. I would rather see effort go into improving it, rather than trying to hang on to something whose time has past, no matter how beautiful it is.

  • David,

    Actually, I am very widely read about the liturgy. I have done graduate work in theology at a well-known, very orthodox Catholic university. To avoid getting off topic too much, I will just say I disagree with your conclusion.


    I am sorry for being imprecise. I didn’t mean to imply that you were saying I needed to go to a Tridentine Mass to save my soul. But I will disagree that it is necessary to attend a Tridentine Mass in order to write about Catholic Liturgy. No offense, but the Tridentine Mass is the past. That would be like saying I need to attend a Gallic-rite Mass or some other similarly valid, but not normative Mass of the Latin rite.


    I have read Ecclesia Dei. The Tridentine rite Mass is provided as an accommodation for those feel an attachment to the Mass of their remembrance. The allowance is envisioned as a temporary measure, a transition, but not something permanent. I did not intend an insult against the Tridentine Mass. What I’m saying is that one does not attend Mass like one attends a concert, for entertainment or curiousity and that’s why I would be going.


    My point is that we don’t have to find some magic formula to bring back the sense of awe and mystery to the Mass. If we authentically implemented the reform of Sacrosanctum Concilium, the NO Mass could be as wonderful an experience as people say the Tridentine is, and perhaps the pews would not be emptying.

  • An additional point: I did not mean this to be a discussion of the merits of the Tridentine versus Novus Ordo. The Tridentine Mass is not coming back into wide application as the norm in most parishes. But I think the Novus Ordo can be reformed to compete with the Tridentine in aesthetics, reverence, holiness, and transcendence. Just because the way it is celebrated (and translated) now is banal does not mean that it has to be that way.