A Christmas Reflection

Written by Prof. Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira

We gather to celebrate the beautiful feast of Christmas, a lovable tradition, established and handed down to us through the centuries. As this year comes to a close, we look back to find that last year ended in similar circumstances: generalized chaos and confusion as risks increase. Presently our situation is similar to last year’s with an even greater potential for confusion and even greater risk, while a general atmosphere of apprehension spreads over the whole country.

Peace in Truth is Found in the Holy Roman Catholic Church

Yet, at this Yuletide, we recall the angelic chant to the shepherds on that rustic and poetic first Christmas Eve as the angels sang, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to men of good will”.

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Yes, peace is tranquility, but not just any tranquility.

St. Thomas Aquinas teaches that “peace is the tranquility of order”. Where there is order there is real peace. Where there is an absence of order there is no peace. What exists is a veiled disorder, an artificial order, but no real peace.

Peace exists, rather, in churches where Catholic doctrine is professed in its integrity; where people all love, understand and feel the same way because they are imbued with the Divine Holy Ghost, who is eminently a Spirit of Peace.

In temporal society we find this peace in a very few places, namely at such gatherings as these, where men live who indeed strive to give glory to God in the highest and, therefore, peace on earth reigns among these men of good will.

But all you who are reading this are also an agent of peace. You savor this peace, you appreciate this peace, you take it to your families, and thus bring them the law of Christ, the Faith of Christ, the order of Christ and the Reign of Christ. As you take into your families the doctrine of His Holy Catholic Church and live by its sweet rule and yoke, you have true peace.

This is the peace that our Lord Jesus Christ wanted to bring to the world and which He expressed in these magnificent words: Pacem relinquo vobis, pacem meam do vobis, “I give you My peace, I leave you My peace.” Which means, He gave them His peace, which is the tranquility of order, leaving this gift to men, to the world, at the time that He was about to leave earth to ascend to heaven.

Great and Small Gather Around the Manger

So, let us approach that heavenly crib of Jesus Christ, the King of Peace, the descendant of a regal dynasty from which also descended Mary Most Holy and Saint Joseph, who, nevertheless, now kneels in the capacity of a humble carpenter before the Savior just born of his wife, the Virgin Mother.

And before great potentates draw near the crib with precious gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh, God wished for humble shepherds to approach and be received with tender love. Even the ox and the donkey were invited to warm Baby Jesus with their breath.

We must be Soldiers of Peace and Soldiers of Order

All this is peace; all this is order. We should be soldiers of peace and soldiers of order, fighting in an orderly manner as true soldiers of Christ in the Reign of Christ.

But aren’t these terms, peace and fight, contradictory? Isn’t peace concomitant with non-aggression? So how can we be “soldiers of peace”? Likewise, how can we call ourselves “soldiers of order” in case of war, when war is such a huge mess?

Nevertheless, peace is present when one fights against disorder through order. This must be well understood. Peace, the peace of Christ in the Reign of Christ exists when men are in order. But this peace does not exist only in non-combat. There is peace also when one fights for order against disorder.

There was also a great battle in heaven between Saint Michael the Archangel and the angels of fidelity and obedience against the angels of infidelity and disobedience. It was so great a battle that Scriptures describes it for us as a great battle was fought in heaven.

So, even at this moment peace did not cease to reign in heaven, because the good were on the side of God fighting to expel from the heavenly mansion the devils who, as agents of disorder, had become unworthy of it.

If there was a war in heaven, it was a war of health against disease, a war of life against death, a war of good against rebellious evil. This battle, by the very fact that it was a battle between what should exist against what should not exist, in itself is order.

In the contemporary world we are precious agents of peace in the measure that we fight against evil angels and those who are dedicated to spreading evil, the agents of war.

So also in the contemporary world we are precious agents of peace in the measure that we fight the evil angels and their minions in their multifaceted attack on faith, morality and good customs.

In the contemporary world we are precious agents of peace in the measure that we fight the evil angels and their minions in their multifaceted attack on faith, morality and good customs.

The peace that we desire for the coming year is the peace of order against the agents of disorder. Only then will we have the peace of order in the tranquility of order. So, let us be agents of order in the coming year, not only because we refuse to engage in useless battles, but also because we do choose to engage in the good fight of which Saint Paul speaks when he said of himself as he lay dying: “Lord, I fought the good fight, now give me the reward of Thy glory.” If we do this in the coming year as we have done this year, we can end the year with peace and hope.

In this generation of thieves and adulterers let us be souls on fire, souls burning with love and strong warriors engendered by Faith. We were not born only to rejoice, or mainly to be happy. We were born, above all, to fight; we were born, above all, to serve the Holy Catholic Church.

Then whatever the furor of evil throughout the world, whatever their threats, we are agents of peace, we are children of Mary, and we are fighters of good order. Thus, by the grace of Mary we may say like Saint Paul and the end of next year: Lord, throughout this year we fought the good fight. Give us now during this year the reward of Thy glory.

(Adapted from a message of Prof. Plinio Correa de Oliveira to TFP Supporters on Dec. 18, 1992 at a Christmas gathering.)

  • vin

    Our Lady of Fatima promised world peace… She told the children we must pray the rosary every day…but more than that she promised peace in the world would come if the Pope Consecrated Russia to her Immaculate Heart…. Since then no fewer than eight Popes have neglected to do so in the formula she requested…
    Shouldn’t TFP be asking its members and all people to petition Pope Francis to Consecrate Russia to Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart? How simple could that act be to bring us World Peace?

    • Chris Tuttle

      Vin, I encourage you to begin at your parish level. Gather together people of prayer, especially the Rosary. Petition your parish priest to instruct the faithful on the requests of Our Lady of Fatima (daily Rosary, first Saturdays, etc) – if this is needed. Then, with your priest, consecrate your parish to the Immaculate Heart and report to your bishop that your parish is ready for the Consecration of Russia. If your priest balks at this, as Our Lady says, pray, pray, pray.

  • Zumalacarregui

    The pontificate of Pope Saint Pius X coincided with Our Lady’s appearance at Fatima. The restoration of the Catholic City that Pope Saint Pius X requested which in effect is the reign of the Immaculate Heart of Mary was not amply received and promoted by the clergy worldwide. Catholic laity who know the score need to scout out the good priests and bishops who remain and foment permanent cells dedicated to the restoration of the Catholic City. The unwillingness of laymen to respond to this call to rebuild the Catholic City, the inconstancy of those who initially respond and then give up, and the constant fratricidal infighting of Catholic traditionalists amongst each other — one circular firing squad after the other — has handicapped the Catholic cause. Catholics are by their Baptism men of Hope — not messengers of despair. Life long commitment to the Catholic Counter-Revolution hinges on permanent formation and spiritual conversion of life. All of the desirable components of this apostolate are not always at our finger tips but we need to make a conscious effort — including spending our own money — to advance in our spiritual life by making the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius and to cooperate with the inevitable opportunities that the Holy Ghost and His spouse Our Lady place in our path. On our own we cannot undertake this warfare and we have an obligation to respond even though our efforts may appear to be quite small compared to the imminent, large scale threats presented by the infernal enemies of the Catholic City. As men of hope we must not give up, surrender is not an option. We must trust that Our Lady will keep her promises and that She and her Son will rout these enemies who at this moment appear to have triumphed.

    ¡Viva Cristo Rey!
    Miami, Florida USA

  • RRR

    Vin, the Pope saint John Paul II has consecrated Russia to Our Lady’s Immaculate Heart in 1982 and sor Lucia corfirmed him that it was made in “the way” that Our Lady wanted to be made.