Daphne Pochin Mould – convert from Anglicanism



converted from anglicanism

A Wicked Sheep

« I did not want to become a Catholic. My intention was to attack rather than to submit to the Church. I was not a lost sheep but a wicked and an obstinate sheep… »

Born in Salisbury (England) in 1920, Daphne Pochin Mould was a brilliant student of geology in Edinburg (Scotland).

From her Anglican upbringing she only retained the typical prejudices against the Catholic Church (superstition, intolerance, rigorism, triumphalism, etc.). A militant agnostic, she was convinced that religion was no more than a means of enslaving mankind.clip_image002

« I used to think that I had to attack the ignorance, the superstition and the cowardice of those who think that by believing in another world they can do away with the struggle against evil and error here on earth. »

In order to study how St. Columba of Iona converted Scotland at the end of the 6th century, she had to go to the Benedictine monastery in Fort Augustus. There, for the first time, she ran into a Catholic priest.

« I was never more scared in my life than on that day ».

While talking with the monk, Fr. Augustin, she discovered that the Faith was not what she had imagined it to be.

She used to see the Faith as an abdication of reason, as a flight from reality, as cowardice. Now she realized that Catholics have rational arguments!

The proof of the existence of God made by Fr. Augustin did not convince her immediately:  she found it too abstract, too philosophical, too different from the scientific method that she was used to.  But she had to admit that there are various ways of learning and methods of inquiry.  While the scientific method has its place, it does not solve the fundamental problems: the reason for our existence; the final end of man and the world; or the experience of beauty:

« In the Scottish mountains that were so rich in contrasts of form and colour, I saw the realization of beauty.  I was inspired with an increasing awareness that beyond the enchantment of the mountains there had to exist the last and ultimate beauty; that all the elements of truth that I reached by means of science pointed to a thing that was the Truth itself; that this ultimate Truth had to be crowned with beauty and transcendent splendour of which the sun illuminating the hills had already given me a foretaste. »

For the time being, Daphne decided to accept the existence of God as a « working hypothesis ».  She altered her view on the Church.  She no longer saw it as a force that obscures and oppressively exploits blind religiosity.  She finally understood that reality itself was in question:

« All of a sudden, I realized that the Church was all about God and that it was not simple emotionalism. The Church stood for truth and beauty, for penance and austerity, and even more, for the huge adventure of holiness. »

A Long Inquiry

It is good, grand, noble and generous, but is it true?  Is it not merely a huge illusion?

Daphne was still far from having the Faith.  To the question  «Would you like to become a Catholic? » she responded with a firm « Only if Catholicism is real! »  And she still had many objections.  But in fact her agnosticism no longer satisfied her.

The big question was Jesus Christ.  But before studying the life of Jesus Christ, Daphne felt turned off by miracles.  They revolted her and she bolted.  But after thinking about it, she had to admit that this passionate reaction was not reasonable.  She recognized that:

« It is more scientific to examine the possibility of a miracle than to refuse a priori to accept it.»

The methodical reading of the four Books of the Gospel was a veritable shock.  She had known only fragments of the Books.  She discovered in the entirety of the Books a doctrine that was so rich and so profound, and, at the same time, so simple and so balanced, that it was difficult to accept that an ordinary man – even a prophet or a saint – could have possibly authored it.

Must she thus admit that Jesus is God?  Daphne was not ready for that.  She was fascinated by His personality, but could not yet bring herself to that conclusion.

« I knew very well that to accept the truthfulness of the Gospel meant to accept Christ and Rome.  I had to give it a long thought. »

In the spring of 1950, Daphne embarked on a serious study of the history of the Church.  She was struck by the terrible crises that regularly oppressed the Church (persecutions, heresies, decadence or weakness of the clergy, etc). At least ten times the Church could have perished under the assaults of its enemies or from the vices of its own members (at times priests, bishops and popes!).  But each time, saints rose up, redressing the humanly desperate situation so that the Church rose up more alive than before.  And there were times when the leaders of the Church could have used their office to justify their errors doctrinally.  But it never happened.  The Infallibility of the Pope is certainly not a trivial claim!

A Conditional Prayer

Finally, Daphne had to recognize both the preeminence of Christ and of the Catholic Church.  But the big question still remained:  Is Jesus Christ truly God?   Daphne could not get past this hurdle:

« The more I thought about the historicity of the Gospels, the more I recognized the evidence that I had to accept Christ; this understanding revolted me violently.  Nonetheless, the natural beauty that I observed – the creation of God that I admired – all came from the same hand that had written the historical Gospels. »

« You need to pray »,  Fr. Augustin told her.  Daphne was deeply irritated by that.  What good would that action do?  Wasn’t she running the risk of falling into auto-suggestion and falsifying the scientific method?  She wanted to refuse to pray, but she felt herself (to be) mysteriously urged to attempt the experiment.  She prayed conditionally in order to appease her conscience.  After invoking God, she immediately added « if He exists » as a precaution in order not to rush the process.  Then she prayed for enlightenment.

She decided to attend Mass – as part of her study, without really participating – and she carefully compared the Roman Missal, which is the traditional Catholic rite of the Mass, to the Anglican ‘Prayer Book’.  She was impressed by the superiority of the former.  The traditional Catholic rite is somber and beautiful as well as dignified and precise.  She especially appreciated the Latin phrases that « always say the right word in the right place »:

« I thought back about the beauty of the mountains and the shores of the Hybrides; I had learned to identify supreme Truth with supreme Beauty; now the simple reading of the Missal left deep impressions.  If the Roman Church is capable of producing such liturgy, it is highly probable that it possesses the truth about God. »

Little by little, Daphne dropped all her objections.  But she still asked: do I truly have the Faith?

« I had always believed that Faith was a pious feeling, an emotional and a euphoric disposition, similar to a disposition created in us by music or by wine.  While I did not have any such feelings, I was pushed by a strong interior movement to take the decisive step to fully accept the Catholic Faith. »

Finally, Daphne Poncin Mould surrendered to Grace:

« He who has always lived in the Catholic Faith cannot imagine what this step means to an agnostic.  It is one thing to be intellectually convinced of the Truth held by Rome, it is altogether another to make the decision to become a Catholic. »

« To accept Roman authority, to confess that you will believe everything that the Church tells you to believe seemed a desperate step, a spiritual suicide.  I feared all authority.  I still had a profound attachment to Protestant individualism.  With this mindset, how could I possibly submit to an authoritative Church like Rome?

A Barrier Had Fallen

Daphne was condemned by her family (who no longer wanted to see her) and by her friends (who abandoned her).

She was received into the Catholic Church on November 11, 1950.  Her soul found peace and joy:

« My first impression was that the barrier between God and myself had fallen.  The second impression was that by becoming a Catholic, I had taken a step towards what was a beginning rather than an end.  I used to consider the Catholic Faith solely as a collection of beliefs, as a moral code; I had forgotten that the Faith was firstly and above all a contact with God, with the Being who is Infinite Love.  Such an adventure has no end.  I understood that the Catholic who attempts to understand God more deeply is never in danger of feeling restricted or limited.  We are made to contemplate God. »

She understood the need for Our Lady in order to be able to truly penetrate the mysteries of the Gospel, and so she applied herself to the Rosary:

« When I was received into the Church, I thought of God mainly in terms of Truth, Beauty and Goodness.  I did not have a true devotion to the Person of Christ.

Now as I read the Gospel, I found myself attracted to His Person and I prayed to Our Lady to help me to better know her Son. »clip_image002[5]

At the same time, Daphne discovered the real Church:

« The most amazing thing about the Church is the gentleness.  This gentleness comes from strength.  The Church is maternal but at the same time has the absolute certitude of possessing the Truth.  How far off were my ideas about the intolerance and violence of Papists! »

Bibliography :

Daphne Pochin Mould, The Rock of Truth

(an autobiography of her conversion), London, Sheet and Ward, 1953.

Francois Russo S.J. Le Roc de la certitude, Daphne Pochin Mould

(a French resume of the above work), Brussels, Foyer Notre-Dame, 1962.

News of Occupied Rome

News of occupied Rome

In the traditional world the suspicion seems to be circulating:  You criticize the Pope, therefore you are sedevacantists, or at least you are beginning to become one.  We reply by citing an author who is not suspected of being a sedevacantist:

Some, to put us down, accuse us of being overly traditional or even sedevacantist. Well, I’m not a sedevacantist; we are not sedevacantists, because sedevacantism destroys the visibility of the Catholic Church.  The Catholic Church is visibly recognizable by its exterior characteristics, She is always One, Catholic, Apostolic and Roman.  The Catholic Church is visible because She is not a purely spiritual entity, She is not simply a gathering of persons who think alike, nor a movement of ideas or a school of thought but a true society having a juridical structure having a hierarchy coming from living men with a Head recognized by all, as in other human societies.  This Head is the reigning Pontiff Pope Francis, in whom we recognize the Vicar of Christ. But we know that, precisely because the Church is a visible institution, we must always make a distinction between the Church and the men of the Church: The Church is always visible, infallible and indestructible, immaculate, in faith and morals; men of the Church are not all and are not always impeccable nor infallible.  Even the Pope may be respectfully criticized.  The Pope is not Jesus-Christ nor His successor:  he is His Vicar, but it is Jesus-Christ who holds and governs the Church 1.

The Pope asks the blessing of a heretic

Pope Francis received, on June 14, the new Anglican “Archbishop” of Canterbury, Justin Welby, who was wearing

the episcopal ring offered to the “Archbishop” Ramsey by Paul VI. The Pope took advantage of the opportunity in order to ask to be “blessed” by this heretic, who is nothing but a simple layman because Anglican orders are not valid.

But that shouldn’t shock us if we recall that Benedict XVI allowed himself to be blessed by a Rabbi:

« At the end of an [inter-religious] encounter [at the Monastery of Saint Benedict in Sao Paulo on May 11, 2007], Rabbi Henry Sobel, 63 years old,

from the Jewish Congregation of Sao Paulo, declared: “The Pope [Benedict XVI] is a friend of the Jewish people”. […] The Rabbi explained that after having asked “very humbly” for the Pope’s blessing, the Pope, having given it, then accepted in his turn to receive a blessing from him. » (Zenit.org, May 11, 2007.)

The recipe of happiness for Francis

« What is the recipe for happiness? »

In answer to this question asked by the Argentinean journalist Pablo Calvo on July 7, the Pope reflected a moment, and then became animated.  Visibly relaxed, he delivered in 10 points his “recipe for happiness”:

1. Live and let live:

« The Romans have a saying that we can take as a theme which goes “Go ahead, and let the others go ahead”. Live and let live, it’s the first step towards peace and happiness. »

2.  Give yourself to others:

« Those who are isolated run the risk of becoming selfish.  And stagnant water is the first to become corrupted. »

3.  Be animated with kindness and humility:

« In “Don Segundo Sombra” (an Argentinean novel by Ricardo Guiraldes), the hero tells how, young, he was like a waterfall off a mountain which rushes over everything; become an adult, he was like a river which went ahead then, as an older man, that he advanced, but slowly, as if canalized.  I use this image of the poet and novelist Ricardo Guiraldes, this last adjective, canalized.  The capacity to move yourself with kindness and humility.  The elderly have this wisdom; they are the memory of a people.  And a nation that cares not for its elderly doesn’t have a future. »

4.  Play with children:

«Consumerism has led us to the anguish of losing a healthy culture of pleasure:  read, enjoy art…Today, I don’t hear many confessions, but in Buenos Aires, I heard the confessions of a lot of people and I asked the young mothers who came, “How many children do you have?  Do you play with them?”  It was an unexpected question, but it’s a way of saying that children are the key to a healthy culture.  It’s difficult for parents who go to work early and come home when their children are sleeping.  It’s difficult, but it must be done. »

5. Spend Sunday with the family:

« The other day, at Campobasso, I encountered University students and people from the workforce and, to each I reminded them that we don’t work on Sunday.  Sunday is for the family. »

6.  Help the young to find work:

« We should be creative with this part of the population.  Because of a lack of opportunities, they can end up falling into drugs.  And the amount of suicides is very high among the young without work.  The other day I read, but I’m not sure it’s a scientific fact, that there are 75 million young people under the age of 25 who have no work.  And it doesn’t suffice to just feed them:  we must make up for them classes of one year to become plumbers, electricians, tailors and seamstresses… It’s dignity that will help them bring food to the table. »

7.  Take care of the world we live in:

« We must take care of creation, and we don’t.  It’s one of our greatest challenges. »

8.  Rapidly forget whatever is negative:

« The need to speak ill of others is a mark of having little esteem for oneself. That’s like saying that I feel so bad, that instead of lifting myself up, I put others down.  It is healthy to speedily forget whatever is negative. »

9.  Respect those who think differently:

« One can go all the way to witnessing with another, as long as both make progress in this dialogue.  But there’s nothing worse than religious proselytizing, one that paralyzes:  “I dialogue with you to convince you”.  No.  Each one dialogues according to who they are.  The Church grows by its attractiveness, not by proselytizing. »

10.  Actively seek peace:

« We are living in a time where wars are numerous. […]  War destroys.  The call to peace needs to be cried out.  Sometimes the word “peace” brings to mind the idea of “calm”, but peace is never tranquillity:  it is always an active peace. »

God is not even mentioned.  It used to be, in illo tempore, that joy was a fruit of the Holy Ghost (Gal. 5, 22), but for the Pope, one has no need of the faith, nor of Our Savior Jesus Christ, to be happy!

Prayer for peace « was absolutely not a failure »

On May 29, the Pope, Rabbi Skorka and the Imam Abu (friends of the Pope who accompanied him during his whole trip in Israel) gave each other the accolade in front of the “Temple Wall” under the amused eyes of Jewish journalists who qualified the trio “the Holy Trinity”!  The rest of the story takes place on June 8:  in the gardens of the Vatican, the Pope, together with the Jewish and Palestinian Presidents “prayed for Peace”; the Muslim Representative, departing from the prepared text of his prayer, asked his “Master” (in Arabic):  « Grant us the victory over the infidel people ».  Two days later, Mossoul fell into the hands of the Muslims who then massacred the Christians.  And ever since then, the blood of Christians flows in the Middle East:  we see children decapitated, adults crucified, etc.

Without doubt God did not directly answer the prayer of the Imam, but He could have permitted this triumph of Islam to punish our sins, and especially the horrible apostasy of the Conciliar Church who presents Islam as if it were a respectable religion while it is nothing but an intellectual imposture (a tissue of contradictions) which imposes itself by violence2.

But the prayer for peace in the Holy Land « was absolutely not a failure », affirmed tranquilly Pope Francis on August 18 in the plane returning from Korea:

« Holy Father, seeing the war in Gaza, wasn’t the prayer for peace organized at the Vatican last June 8th a failure according to you? »

« Thank you, thank you for the question.  This prayer for peace was absolutely not a failure. Firstly, the initiative didn’t come from me:  the initiative of praying together came from the two Presidents, from the President of the State of Israel and from the President of the State of Palestine. […] These two men are men of peace, they are men who believe in God, and who have lived through so many horrible things, so many horrible things that they are convinced that the only way to resolve this story is through negotiation, dialogue and peace.  But now for your question: wasn’t it a failure? No, I believe that the door is open. […] The door of prayer was opened.  One says: “we must pray”.  It’s a gift, peace is a gift, a gift which is merited by our work, but it’s a gift.  And tell mankind that with the way of negotiation – which is important, of dialogue – which is important, there is also that of prayer.  It’s true.  Afterwards came what came.  But that is circumstantial.  On the other hand, our meeting was not [just] a circumstance.  It is a fundamental step of human behavior:  prayer.  Now the smoke of bombs, the wars, don’t allow us to see the door, but the door remains open from now on.  And as I believe in God, I believe that the Lord sees this door, and He sees all those who pray and all those who ask Him to help us.  Yes, I love this question.  Thank you, thank you for having posed it.  Thank you3. »

Errare humanum est, persevare diabolicumHow much time will it take before the hierarchy of the Church realizes the Utopia of Conciliar ecumenism?  And how long will God permit the infiltration of the hierarchy by the Masonic Lodges?

Construct an authentic brotherhood among people

We know that Tertullian said that the blood of martyrs is the seed of Christians.  As for the Pope, after the assassination of three religious of Burundi on September 7th, he hopes that « the blood spilled would become the seed of hope to construct an authentic brotherhood among people ».

Since the last Council, the Vatican actively works at the construction of this “brotherhood”.  As for Pope Francis, he established in Buenos Aires, while he was Archbishop there, a scholastic inter-religious and multi-cultured network of cultural integration called “Scholas Occurrentes”. On September 4, the Pope explained to the delegates of the Scholas Occurrentes the reason for this network:  to organize inter-religious football matches, to combat the unemployment of the young, to promote the “culture of encounter”, to struggle against “discrimination”, to promote dialogue between religions, to create a “human village” that brings peace and hope:  « Sports saves us from selfishness; […] let us walk through life together; […] the young must build the future; […] let us build bridges, not walls; […] let us share our experiences; […] let us enter into the spontaneity of life”, etc. »

This project has nothing specifically Christian about it, it is naturalistic (without reference to the supernatural end of man) and won’t displease the “brethren” [i.e. the Masons]. Indeed, we know that the end of Freemasonry is the “reconstruction of the Temple”, that is to say, to rebuild all humanity under a “universal republic” with no reference to the supernatural end of man, nor to Our Lord Jesus Christ.

The “United Nations” of religions

The project of the Pope is in perfect harmony with those of the other leaders of the contemporary world.  It is thus that the former Spanish President Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero proposed on July 15, at the time of the international symposium on World Peace at the University of Nebrija of Madrid, the creation of a “permanent alliance between religious denominations” joined to the “Alliance of civilizations” (one of his creations) and to the United Nations.

As for Shimon Peres, the former President of Israel, he met the Pope again on September 4, 2014 and suggested an “Organization of the United Nations of religions” to fight against all violence perpetrated in the name of the faith.  « The Pope didn’t engage himself personally, but listened carefully and expressed his respect for this initiative, assuring him of the attention of the Dicasteries of the Roman Curia concerned – the Pontifical Counsel for inter-religious dialogue and the Pontifical Counsel Justice and Peace », specified Father Lombardi.

Evangelical Christians:  The Pope has gone to find his brothers

On August 12, 2014, Pope Francis affirmed: « the Pope has gone to find his brothers! », while visiting an Evangelical [= Protestant] Community.  He encourages them to walk « on the path of unity », in « searching for Jesus » because « when one walks in the Presence of God, one finds this brotherhood ».

Pope Francis gave a speech in which he indicated « the path of Christian holiness:  every day, seek Jesus to encounter Him and every day allow yourself to be sought by Jesus and allow yourself to be found by Jesus ».  Finally, the Pope asked pardon in the name of the Church for the persecutions perpetrated by Catholics against Evangelical Christians throughout the course of History: « Among those who wrote up these laws and persecuted, denounced our Pentecostal brothers because they were “enthusiastic” almost “mad”, there were some Catholics: I am the Pastor of the Catholics: I beg your pardon for what happened.  I ask your pardon for these Catholic brothers and sisters who have not understood and who were tempted by the devil and did as the brothers of Joseph.  I ask the Lord to give us the grace to acknowledge and to forgive…Thank you! »

The laws for which the Pope asks pardon are the laws which restrained the freedom of exercising a public cult of certain Evangelical sects in Italy, under Pope Pius XI.  They were perfectly in accord with Catholic doctrine…before Vatican II.

1Roberto De Mattei in the “Courrier de Rome”, June 2014, p. 6.  Roberto de Mattei presents himself as a disciple of professor Plinio Correa de Oliveira, Founder of the TFP (Work Family Property, see the “Sel de la terre” 28, p. 185; 39, p. 262 and 46, p. 266), which he frequented during about 20 years (1976-1995) and of which he wrote a biography.  He directed the “Alleanza Cattolica”.  He is president of the foundation “Lepanto” and he founded and directed the “centre culturel Lepante” (1982-2006). He writes regularly in the “Correspondance européenne”.  He is now in the “Ecclesia Dei” movement, but that doesn’t keep him from participating in the “Courrier de Rome” congresses presided by Bishop Fellay (for example the next one, in January 2015).  In the beginning of September 2014, he gave a conference during a Pilgrimage of the Society to Rome in front of an “audience of very interested Priests” (DICI #300, p. 10).

2See especially the works of Father Guy Pages (www.islam-et-verite.com <http://www.islam-et-verite.com/> ).

3Osservatore Romano en langue française, Thursday, August 21, 2014, 34, page 16.