Some moving quotes from Martin Mosebach’s The Heresy of Formlessness December 5, 2013Posted by tantamergo in Basics, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Latin Mass, Liturgy, scandals, secularism, self-serving, the return.
I’ve been reading Martin Mosebach’s The Heresy of Formlessness. The Ignatius Press version, from which Fr. Fessio personally removed some of the more provocative bits. He didn’t want it to be “too controversial.” Whatever. There is still plenty of gold. I quote some random bits below, particularly pithy or effective quotes that I thought made important points. I hope you enjoy them. The book is a must read, even in its somewhat truncated and neutered Ignatius version. I do add some comments.
……the reformers of the Mass, preoccupied with their notion of early Christianity, were intent only on impoverishing and curtailing; they were actually pursuing a late Catholic puritanism rather than drawing on the wealth of forms of worship of the first millenium. [Indeed, if the reformers were so set on slavishly returning to early Christian practice, why aren't women and men segregated at the Mass, as they were for the first several hundred years of Church history? Why don't we have the severe penances and public Confession? For that matter, why is the Mass not in Latin? The Mass was never offered in Old English or one of the hundreds of Germanic languages. In point of fact, the "return to early Church practice" was simply an excuse to impose the revolution.]
…..a low Mass in the traditional Rite, read silently in a garage, is more solemn than the biggest Novus Ordo church-concert with spiritual trimmings…….if there is ever to be significant religious art again, this art will come from the “old” Liturgy, which expresses the sacred. [The first part might be debatable. I tend to agree, but it's an arguable point. I don't think any argument can be made against the latter.]
The Mass is not some basic core activity to which various decorations can be added [or taken away] , according to opportunity, in order to height the participant’s awareness. The rites “contain nothing unnecessary or superfluous.” [The Council of Trent solemnly declared that the Mass contained nothing unnecessary. But Vatican II called for the removal of pointless accretions and "useless repetitions.] Who would dare to pretend to find “unnecessary or superfluous things in a great fresco or a great poem?……..At all times there have been people who have made themselves ridiculous by trying to eliminate the “mistakes” in masterpieces, applying their half-baked scholarship to Michelangelo’s frescos and Shakespeare’s tragedies. Great works have a soul: we can feel it, alive and radiant, even where its body has been damaged.
The Liturgy must be regarded with at least as much respect as a profane masterpiece of this kind. Respect opens our eyes. Often enough, even in the case of a profane work of art, if we study conscientiously and ponder the detail, especially the apparently superfluous detail, we find that the offending element comes unexpectedly to life; in the end it sometimes happens that we come to see it as a special quality of the work. This is always the case of the rites of the Sacred Liturgy. There is nothing in them that, given intensive contemplation, does not show itself to be absolutely saturated with spiritual power. [I agree wholeheartedly, and would add, that those older folks who tell us how very, very glad they were when the Novus Ordo was put in place and they finally got rid of that terrible old Latin Mass never understood the Mass. They don't understand it now. Well prior to the Council, a sense had permeated many in the Church that the Mass was old fashioned and out of date. They didn't understand what was going on. This is a damning indictment of the priests and bishops of the pre-conciliar era, that so many people apparently never came to appreciate the Mass in all its glory. But then again, that bad catechesis and priestly formation was at least in part a result of the growing modernist influence in the Catholic seminary and university, thoroughly laced with a good deal of hostility towards the Mass. In the end, the modernists are at least partly responsible for everything, although there was a good deal of just plain ol' apathy around, too, I think.]
The [preconciliar] liturgy became a rich image with a welter of tiny details, greater than the sum of its parts; thus it must be contemplated and can never be entirely understood. [Yes! And in order to make the Mass "understandable," it had to be so dumbed down and stripped of content that it became a banality.]
Quote 5, on why the Consecration should take place “secretly,” obscured by the priest, or, in the Byzantine Liturgies, behind the ikonostasis:
The hermetic aspect, the aspect of rapture, that surrounds the Consecration in the “old” Latin Liturgy represents nothing other than the Holy Sepulcher, shut with a stone, in which the God-man awoke from death. This even had the whole cosmos for a witness, but no living man saw it. Something that, in the Liturgy, seems to be a later accretion, an accompaniment found in Byzantine basilicas and Gothic cathedrals, thus proves to be intimately connected with the core of salvation history. Christian liturgy is a withing beneath the Cross and outside the grave. This is another image the liturgical reform has tried to erase. [Why? Why can there be no mystery in the Mass? Why must everything be conducted like a crass commercial display? In fact, the hiding of the Consecration is about as ancient a liturgical act as one can find. Ever since the Christians built churches, the Consecration was especially set apart. But modernists didn't like that, because the vast majority of them DON'T BELIEVE IN THE REAL PRESENCE. To even hint at the Real Presence is hateful to them.]
That’s enough for one day. If you like, maybe some more, later.
If the liturgical reform failed totally, is it time to revisit Sacrosanctum Concilium? December 4, 2013Posted by tantamergo in abdication of duty, Basics, disaster, Ecumenism, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Latin Mass, Liturgy, sadness, scandals, secularism.
I saw a post at Louis Verricchio’s blog that discusses the more radical aspects of Sacrosanctum Concilium. For those that don’t know, Sacrosanctum Concilium (SC) is the Vatican II document on the reform of the Sacred Liturgy. It was the first document promulgated at Vatican II, and set the tone for the rest with its either/or or “declaration followed by obfuscation” format. While Verricchio raised a number of valid concerns in making his point (which is that while many conservative Catholics try to point to SC as a “conservative” document of VII, there are many problematic statements in it that have been used to make very destructive changes to the Mass), I was struck by how much the reform of – or revolution against – the Liturgy has failed according to the goals set out in SC itself.
The entire reform of the Liturgy proposed at Vatican II was sold as being one that would dramatically improve the practice of the Faith in the lives of all the faithful. It was also supposed to make the Liturgy irresistibly attractive to protestants and those in other schismatic/heretical sects. In short, the “reform” was sold as being the main harbinger of that great new springtime that was so hoped for back in the days of the Council. This is apparent from the opening paragraph of SC, which states:
1. This sacred Council has several aims in view: it desires to impart an ever increasing vigor to the Christian life of the faithful; to adapt more suitably to the needs of our own times those institutions which are subject to change; to foster whatever can promote union among all who believe in Christ; to strengthen whatever can help to call the whole of mankind into the household of the Church. The Council therefore sees particularly cogent reasons for undertaking the reform and promotion of the liturgy.
While the reform (or destruction, according to many experts) of the Roman Rite was supposed to instill “increasing vigor to the Christian life of the faithful,” what we have seen, from any metric one could care to choose, is the exact opposite! We have seen a deeper, faster and more universal collapse in the practice of the Faith – especially in Mass attendance! – than in ANY other period in the entire history of the Church!
Whatever changes were made to the Mass, which were intended to “adapt it more suitably to the needs of our own times,” (and what hubris in THAT statement!), that adaptation has apparently failed spectacularly. Not only has Mass attendance collapsed, but so has participation in almost all other aspects of the life of the Faith, from Confession to Adoration (which, in many places, is still actively debased as “medieval superstition”) to material support for the Church to personal prayer life to…….I could go on and on, but they have all fallen precipitously.
Furthermore, the reformed Liturgy has failed to attain the union it set out to achieve, either through attracting more converts or – and this was incredibly dubious from the start – resulting in a single, universal “mass” used by mainline protestant sects and the Church. In fact, this dream was impossible from the start, because only the Lutherans and Anglicans had retained enough semblance of the Mass to make such a union possible. But so very, very much was lost in the futile attempt. Things have gotten so bad, now, that at ecumenical confabs with orthodox Lutherans and Catholics present, the Lutherans are frequently scandalized by the impious handling of the Blessed Sacrament and casual disregard for the sacred! If anything, the Novus Ordo has turned off more of the separated sects than it has attracted!
Again, I could keep going on and on, showing how each individual aim of the reform of the Liturgy, as outlined in Sacrosanctum Concilium, has apparently failed, and massively. I could quote statistic after statistic showing the collapse in the practice of the Faith in this country and around the world.
But instead of beating this dead horse, I’ll simply ask a question – if the reform has so manifestly failed in ALL its stated objectives, perhaps it is time to end the experiment and return to the timeless Liturgy of the Church? Or, I’ll ask another way – why do converts make up a hugely disproportionate number of those who find their way to the Traditional Latin Mass?
Could it be the Mass the starry-eyed reformers were looking for, dreaming of a single Liturgy to unite all the “separated brethren,” is the one they had all along?
Defend Our Lady’s Honor from horrific lesbian blasphemy! December 4, 2013Posted by tantamergo in asshatery, Basics, Dallas Diocese, disaster, error, General Catholic, horror, Our Lady, persecution, pr stunts, scandals, sexual depravity, sickness, Society, unadulterated evil.
A radical homosexualist play on the Passion of Our Most Blessed Lord Jesus Christ is coming to Dallas. Called “The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told,” this nightmare of blasphemy and indecency features the Blessed Virgin as a lesbian and a full cohort of other homosexual characters in a play that mocks and belittles Christian belief.
A protest is being organized for Sunday, December 8 (The Feast of the Immaculate Conception) outside the Kalita Humpries Theater on tony Turtle Creek Blvd. All details below. The vigil starts at 1pm and goes to 2p. This will be a peaceful prayer vigil featuring the Rosary and other Marian devotions.
DATE: Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013
TIME: 1:00PM – 2:30PM
PLACE: Kalita Humphreys Theater, 3636 Turtle Creek Blvd Dallas, TX 75219 (Meet at intersection of Turtle Creek Road and Lemmon Ave. East)
BRING FRIENDS. BRING FAMILY. BRING A BUS!
You may call America Needs Fatima’s member services with
any questions: 888-317-5571.
I will point out, this vigil is being organized by Tradition, Family, and Property/America Needs Fatima. But don’t let that stop you from showing up, if you have a problem with that group. This is about defending the honor of Our Blessed Mother. If we want the culture to change, we’re going to have to step up and make it change. At the very least, I think Our Lady’s immaculate virtue demands redress of this assault.
One a final note, these boneheads can’t even get basic theology right, the play – as so often happens in popular culture – confuses the Incarnation and Birth of Christ with the Immaculate Conception of Our Blessed Mother.
How about it, Mater Dei-ers? Shouldn’t we get a group together and go over after Mass?
A good exegesis on Limbo of the Infants December 3, 2013Posted by tantamergo in Abortion, Basics, catachesis, contraception, episcopate, error, Four Last Things, General Catholic, Grace, Holy suffering, sadness, sickness, Society, Tradition, Virtue.
Presented below is a sermon from an FSSP priest on the subject of the Limbo of the infants. I did a post on this subject a couple of months ago that was taken exception to by one fellow blogger, who made some statements that led to a falling out between us, at least on a blogging level. I don’t cotton to calling good priests heretics because you don’t like their presentation of a belief that has been widely accepted throughout the history of the Church, if it is not a formal doctrine. So, this post may be controversial.
In the previous post, I took a less strong view than does the priest in the sermon below. He argues quite forcefully for the existence of Limbo, and claims that is where unbaptized babies (and aborted babies) go. This is a serious issue and has constant real-world implications. I have personally found, as have others, that many women intending to abort their women have convinced themselves that the abortion is a “good thing,” because they have been told, or come to believe, that their baby will immediately fly to Heaven and not have to experience the travails of this life. Even if true – which, the vast preponderance of belief from the Tradition weighs against this belief – this “abortion as salvific act” would do nothing to assuage the mother’s guilt for involvement in the murder of her own child, a sin that certainly cries out to Heaven.
This is a most pernicious idea. It is very difficult to convince women otherwise, when they have been led to believe that their abortion is actually a good and holy thing. Unfortunately, in our current day and in the Church we presently have, there is a very widespread belief that aborted babies DO go to Heaven. Even many priests and theologians share this view. To say such a view greatly undermines pro-life efforts would be a tremendous understatement.
But aside from the practical aspects of what I consider to be the almost certain error of abortion as Sacrament, there is the matter of Truth, and the preponderance of theological/Magisterial opinion. Without question, the understanding that unbaptized but otherwise sinless infants and children go to Limbo, not Heaven, has been the dominant belief of Saints and theologians going back to the earliest Church. Limbo is not a medieval concept. It was posited in the early Church by great Church Fathers.
The sermon. There are some powerful quotes from early Church Fathers and Church Councils. It is critical to note that the recent opinions given casting doubt on Limbo have no authority. I also found the distinction between the hope we can have for infants who die from natural causes, to faithful Catholic parents, prior to baptism, and those who die in abortion very important. There is much greater reason to have hope for the former, than the latter:
One more small addendum. To claim that arguing strongly that unbaptized babies go to Limbo makes one a heretic is simply untenable. The great St. Augustine, one of the two or three most influential theologians in the history of the Church, posited an even “stronger,” if you will, belief – he claimed it was certain Doctrine that unbaptized babies, and all unbaptized souls, go to hell. If strongly supporting Limbo makes one a material heretic, I guess the Church is really screwed up, because one of her greatest and most influential lights was even more in “error.”
But in reality, one can believe very strongly for Limbo (or even hell) in this matter and remain a faithful Catholic, because the Church has no authoritative Dogma on the matter. However, the conservative position, if you will, is that unbaptized but sinless children most likely go to Limbo. Thus, the traditional Catholic practice of quickly baptizing newborn infants has a strong theological basis, and is not just a superstitious act as some modern theologians try to claim.
One of the biggest crises afflicting the culture, and the Church, is the utter collapse of male responsibility and leadership. Too often, men simply fail to perform the duties their vocations require. In fact, it seems as each generation comes around, this problem only grows worse and worse. We all know the scandal that almost half of all babies born in the United States are born to women without husbands. This is simply one example of the crisis. There are myriad more.
Of course, none of this is to say that men are solely responsible - women have certainly, in a collective sense, done a tremendous amount to help destroy the family as an institution, to erode male leadership, to attack the traditional family model, etc. But even with that being the case, it is STILL men’s duty to lead, to overcome all that, and keep sacrificing for the greater good. By and large, men have just stopped doing so.
I don’t want to turn this into a diatribe against men – part of the reason for my railing is simply awareness of my own inadequacies – but I do it to highlight a very valuable resource that was forwarded me by occasional reader TB, who sent me Fr. Chad Ripperger’s paper on Parental Roles and Responsibilities. This is a great piece for all parents, but especially fathers. Some excerpts highlighted by TB:
“Whenever a father fails to pray, suffer and do good works in order to merit graces for his wife and family, he fails in the most important task of husband and father. …When a father sees a moral or spiritual fault in his wife or child, he fails to provide for them if he merely temporarily admonishes them. Rather, he must spiritually do what he can to merit grace as well as direct his children and wife through his commands to lead them to virtue. (You can see the priesthood of the father in this respect.)
The father, by virtue of the office of fatherhood, has rights over his wife and children, and so when the wife and children submit to the father, they enjoy the fruits of those rights, i.e. spiritual providence and protection. The wife should not view her subjection to her husband as a loss of freedom or control, but as a form of protection and providence, i.e. by means to her own holiness and spiritual safety.” [This is a great and important point. We all receive great graces from faithfully submitting to those in authority over us, painful as it may be at times. This fact reveals a fundamental problem with our current cultural model of liberty and the exultation of the individual, which constantly carps against authority and tries (successfully) to subvert it. I'm sure this statement will be unpopular with some, however, but we must remember that the father was instituted by God as not just the head of the family, but a figurative priest in charge of the domestic flock. This is a deadly serious responsibility. ]
“The merits of a father to ward off the demonic are more powerful by virtue of his office as husband than of his wife’s. Since the demons must respect the order of authority, the father enters more efficaciously into the spiritual warfare with the demonic since ultimately they must submit to the order of authority established by God.”
“He (father) must protect his authority in order to protect his wife and it is here that we can see the massive failure that has led to our feminized culture. The collapse of fatherhood is NOT due to women, it is due to men. Men have not been men, women have been allowed to take positions God never intended them. Men are responsible for the feminist movement” [I would say, yes, this is true. But it is the culture of "enlightenment" with corrosive rhetoric of unlimited individual rights (without concomitant duties) that undergirds men's failure to perform their duties. In short, enlightenment "liberal" thinking eventually became so pervasive that answers to feminist demands were lacking and men eventually retreated from their roles as natural leaders of families instituted by God. I think there is plenty of blame to go around for this most invasive development.]
“Men lose their authority by (a) not observing their proper authority of the wife over the children as mother; (b) by not consulting her when prudence dictates and (c) not treating her with the dignity that is due her, either as a human or according her to office as wife. …Men often experience a certain rebellion from their wives because of mistreatment or a lack of legitimate concern for their wives.” He lists examples of when it’s prudent to consult the wife on Page 10.
“If the husband without good reason contravenes the mother’s governance of her children, he weakens his own governance.” (It’s crucial to be on the same page in regards to raising children.)
“In respect to the office of wife…when the wife takes care of the home and makes the meals, in justice the husband owes her gratitude and not ridicule or disrespect. Each time he fails to act in a manner that shows gratitude, he demeans the office of wife and thereby, disrespects the office which God himself has established; in a phrase, he sins.”
“If the husband is incapable in fulfilling some aspect of the leadership of the home, the wife may take over if necessary. (Father says it must be a grave and serious matter for the wife to assume authority.)
“If he fails in his responsibility, he will pay a greater price than his wife. In this respect, it is easier for a woman to save her soul than a man, because original sin has left men with a wound of not wanting to take responsibility, at time, for his family because the task is arduous. (It’s much easier to spend the weekends on the lay-z-boy watching football then tending to the spiritual and temporal needs of one’s family.)
And what we see today is a vicious circle of men checking out, seeking escape in video games, TV, “man-caves,” drugs, illicit sex, and many other avenues. This feeds a vicious circle, where the man gives up his duties and responsibilities, which many times women then take up, which further alienates the man, leading to further withdrawal, followed by more feminine involvement, etc, until we have about half the men out there running around acting like rutting bucks, very happy to enjoy female pleasure (which they are all too willing to give away), while taking no responsibility for the children that result. Thus, the collapse of the family, the collapse of morality, the advance of decadence and perversion, and eventually – if this continues, civilizational collapse.
Your cheery thought for the day.
Dom Prosper Gueranger gives an exhortation for our age November 26, 2013Posted by tantamergo in abdication of duty, Basics, Christendom, disaster, episcopate, error, family, General Catholic, persecution, sadness, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, the enemy.
I read the following several days ago, on the Feast of St. Cecilia. Due to other commitments, I was not able to post the below until now. I find in the below exactly the kind of exhortation we need for our day, for the crises that afflict the Church and the entire world. We need great Saints. Saints rarely, if ever, are made through some secret action of Grace, just suddenly emerging one day totally imbued with sanctity and virtue. No, Saints are made through suffering and denial, but also apostolic zeal for the salvation of souls and the conversion of the world. What the Church has been missing most of all these past several decades is that latter, critical part: zeal of souls.
God have mercy on us. Gueranger, via Ars Orandi (which saved me from having to type all this in!), below:
The Church recognizes and honours in St. Cæcilia three characteristics, which, united together, distinguish her among all the blessed in heaven, and are a source of grace and an example to men. These three characteristics are, virginity, apostolic zeal, and the superhuman courage which enabled her to bear torture and death. Such is the threefold teaching conveyed by this one Christian life.
Interestingly, I just read an article the other day on how singularly, spectacularly ineffective all the great celebrity news-hounding “charity” by the Gates has been. In effect, most of their programs haven’t even slightly improved the lives of the poor in Africa, but have only served to further enrich third-world kleptocrats. But, these huge-dollar giveaways do keep the Gates’ name in the papers, which may be the point of it all.
And not to be churlish, but once again, we see a Catholic apostate hanging her apostasy on the words of Pope Francis. Fairly or unfairly, that is the reality those words have created:
Melinda Gates, the wife of Bill Gates, the Microsoft founder, is running a £2.7 billion ($4.3 billion) project to provide birth control for an additional 120 million women in some of the world’s poorest countries.
Her work has been criticised in some Catholic quarters because the Church opposes the use of contraceptives.
However, in an interview with The Sunday Telegraph Stella magazine, Mrs Gates, 49, said she had wrestled with her beliefs before making her views – which put her at odds with the Catholic Church’s teaching – public.
“It took me a couple of years, quite honestly. I knew it would be controversial. But you can’t turn your back on these women you meet.”
Access to contraception led to greater opportunities for girls, as preventing unwanted pregnancies allowed them to finish their studies, Mrs Gates said. [But at what cost? How much will future productivity implode due to tiny family size? What of the long-term health effects on the mother from using often very dangerous, carcinogenic forms of contraception (the kind most preferred by the Gates, like 30 day shots of huge doses of hormones, to keep the "ooops I forgot" factor" away? None of this is mentioned, and contraception - a grave moral evil - is presented as an unalloyed good.]
“I use contraceptives. I believe in contraceptives, my friends use contraceptives. And so if I believe in this for myself – and for my daughters and other women – I said to myself, ‘How could I not speak out about this?’” [Could this be a way to rationalize her sin, by foisting it on tens of millions of other women? "Everybody is doing it" is the oldest excuse in the book for sin.]
Mrs Gates said she was heartened by Pope Francis, who has suggested that the Church is too focused on contraception and abortion. [Did he? That was just one quote, how many other quotes - and there are a number - weigh against that one?]
“I’ve been so happy to hear him say overall is that he’s focused on the poor,” she said. “That is the Church’s mission. If you go back to the Bible, it was about focusing on people who were poor and marginalised. [Yes, but NO! It was - it IS - about saving your soul! About loving God with all your heart, mind, and strength, which means ACCEPTING ALL THE TRUTH CHRIST HAS REVEALED THROUGH HIS CHURCH, INCLUDING THE EVIL OF CONTRACEPTION! But I see you are a true product of your schooling, I would imagine 90+% of Ursuline grads agree with you.]
“So I think he’s trying to put the conversation back on the roots of the Church, and I think that’s fantastic.”
There you go, systematic theology from Melinda Gates. Wonderful. It is so sad she has not been advised by a very holy priest of the danger she is putting her soul in. But then again, perhaps she has.
I know there are so many things to pray for, but perhaps a prayer for the conversion of Mrs. Gates would be in order. So sad, she is going to have a devastating impact on so many women. She has at least 4.3 billion things to atone for. I pray for her happiness in this life and in the next, and most devoutly for her sincere conversion.
I really don’t like the term “fundamentalist,” because they are not. Unless one considers people who obsess over a few bible quotes taken radically out of context from the whole and from each other as somehow possessing a “fundamental” understanding of Sacred Scripture and Christianity in general.
A case on point. Yes, the Bible does indicate in places – in the Old Testament – that parents should discipline their children, even severely. This severity was prior to the New Covenant, which is based on love, not fear. So, these Old Testament dictums were obviated, or at least moderated to a point of reason, by St. Paul’s exhortation to parents and spouses in 1 Corinthians. Unfortunately, some protestants have once again seized on a particular bit of Scripture and gone nuts with it, and now a little girl is dead. As the father of five daughters, this just makes me so sad. I’m trying hard no to be mad.
I don’t have a problem with spanking. I have certainly spanked my kids. But I pray God I would never take to using tricks like rubber hoses – the same technique the North Vietnamese used to torture our pilots in the Vietnam War – so I can hide the damage. That, right there, indicates shame and a knowledge that what one is doing is wrong. There is a huge difference between applying one’s hand to a child’s bottom, and wailing on them with a plastic hose – to the point of death.
Yet another black eye for Christendom. Just what we needed…….
I guess that does raise a question – are protestants part of Christendom? Or are they so heretical they are not? Orthodox – I would say they are part of Christendom. The five high church Anglicans that are left – maybe. Fundies…..probably not.
h/t Christine Niles
PS – What is the Church’s ecumenical outreach to fundamentalists? It seems those to the right of the current administration of the Church don’t get much ecumenical love. Funny how that works……
Michael Matt – traddies behaving like imbeciles? November 21, 2013Posted by tantamergo in Basics, blogfoolery, disconcerting, episcopate, error, General Catholic, Papa, scandals, Society, the return, Tradition, Virtue.
I first saw this video pop up on Youtube a couple of days ago. I read the description, and decided I didn’t really want to watch it. But I’ve seen it get some coverage elsewhere, so I finally did watch this video below.
In it, Michael Matt, editor of The Remnant – a quite traditional publication – chides, pretty strongly, traditional Catholics for excessive cynicism in general, and criticism of the Pope in particular. I know there are some folks – Louis Verricchio, Mundabor, and that’s about it, from the people I read regularly – who have pretty much determined they know who and what this Pope is, and they have made clear they stand in full-throated opposition. I haven’t seen some of the more extravagant criticisms that Matt alludes to in his video. Perhaps he’s even pointing some of the criticism at this blog, although that would be surprising, as The Remnant website has linked to some of my writings on Pope Francis.
In fact, the traddy-bashing overall is somewhat surprising, as The Remnant has published pieces from Christopher Ferrara and others which have been quite strident in their criticism, if not outright condemnation, of the Pope. Mr. Matt himself has reacted rather strongly to things like the Jesuit interview and the Scalfari interview. But it seems like Mr. Matt goes to Rome periodically, and somehow gets a great feeling of reassurance from that experience. And then some scandal would occur, and the rosy disposition would fall by the wayside again. I think he has even said, this papacy looks much different in Rome than it does here. In Italy, apparently, the Pope’s new approach has led to a number of people returning to the Faith, at least for a while. We must pray these reversions are truly committed.
Below, Mr. Matt makes much of certain “olive branches,” if you will, that Pope Francis has extended towards the conservative/traditional souls in the Church. These efforts – the greetings to the FSSP on their anniversary, the greetings to the Summorum Pontificum pilgrims, the “embrace” of Bishop Marchetto’s vision of the hermeneutic of continuity – have received some positive coverage. But I don’t know how significant they are, to some degree, they are a sort of perfunctory diplomatic exercise in which the Papacy, as any government, engages every day.
One item I don’t recall Matt mentioning was the statement to the Italian traditional critics by Pope Francis – thanking them for their criticism. The other positive acts Matt refers to have occurred in the past month. Perhaps these are an indication of a change in disposition by the Holy Father. I don’t know. Or perhaps, things are becoming more clear over time. But the thanks of the Pope to some pretty strong criticisms by those two Italians would seem to indicate that those engaging in criticism of the papacy are, perhaps, having some effect which could be perceived as being beneficial to the cause of Tradition.
I’m sure there are people going too far. There almost always are, on any subject. I have found some criticisms that have made me uncomfortable on a few occasions. It’s easy to get wrapped up in an argument and proving one’s point, and forget charity. If I have done so here, I pray I will not. But I’m almost getting a sense from a few quarters that Catholics attracted to Tradition should pretty much just shut up and pray, that to engage in any criticism, expressions of concern, or even questioning – and not just in reference to the Pope, but even bishops or cardinals – is pretty much an invariably sinful activity. What’s funny, is that some of the folks saying this have engaged in massive criticism themselves, in the recent past. But now that it might, in some quarters, point at the Holy Father, they’re now quite certain all of that is wrong. We are, of course, free to re-evaluate our actions at all times and certainly should, but it’s an interesting phenomenon to observe, nonetheless.
This is a very trying time for many souls. There has been a huge shift in the behavior of the Pope compared to his predecessor. That is bound to be shocking and upsetting to some, or many. And there have been, unfortunately, statements made and a few actions taken that some souls may feel bound, in conscience, to respond to. I think there is a bit of a sense developing that any criticism or even questioning of the reigning pope (note, dead pontiffs get criticized, even slammed, all the time – especially if they are pre-conciliar) is completely forbidden, even sinful. I think this is a dangerous trend towards ultramontanism that is not healthy. But I also recognize this is a very touchy subject – some people just can’t “go there.”
I do think we all need to constantly check our motivations and improve our practice of charity. It’s never a good idea to release a blog post, an article, or a video when one is upset, and I will admit I have done so in the past 8 months. I understand what Mr. Matt is trying to say below, and I think there are some good things to pull out of it. I think we traditionalists need to strive to live up to the examples of the great Saints of our Tradition in all that we do, while keeping in mind, there have been times when even the Saints have been fiery in their rhetoric. I might add, this was especially prevalent in the early days of the Church, when She was riven by heresies and great controversies regarding core, bedrock aspects of theology like Who Christ Is. I have read statements by Saints that are as inflammatory as anything I’ve ever read on a blog, and a few of those statements were even directed at the popes of their time. Read St. Jerome from time to time, and you’ll see what I mean.
Finally, the video:
PS – I really don’t consider this post “blogfoolery,” or internecine warfare between Catholic blogs, because I am not strongly disagreeing with Mr. Matt, whose estimation in my eyes has grown a great deal in the past year or so. I get what he’s trying to say, and I think his words have some merit. I don’t think I quite agree with the final conclusion, and I also think he chose a poor expression in likening Catholic bloggers to dorkish imbeciles. I also strongly disagree that we should all be striving mightily to spin the Pope’s more controversial statements into some endorsement of orthodoxy, as some blogs seem dedicated to doing. It’s disingenuous and frankly disrespectful to put words in the Pope’s mouth. But that applies to the critics, too.
I’m not sure this post made any sense! Sorry if I’m just rambling. If you can’t tell, I’m discombobulated on the entire matter.
100 million more to lose insurance due to Obamacare next year November 20, 2013Posted by tantamergo in abdication of duty, Dallas Diocese, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, persecution, sadness, scandals, secularism, Society, the return.
The “individual market” aspect of Obamacare that went into effect this year is relatively small potatoes. About 5 million were negatively affected. For many of these people, the effect has been catastrophic. Nevertheless, the overall numbers of those suffering are small. But next year, the “employer mandate” kicks in, and that, according to an independent analysis, will result in 50-100 million Americans losing their currently mostly affordable health insurance, and dump them onto the overpriced, low quality Obamacare “exchanges.”
A new and independent analysis of ObamaCare warns of a ticking time bomb, predicting a second wave of 50 million to 100 million insurance policy cancellations next fall — right before the mid-term elections.
The next round of cancellations and premium hikes is expected to hit employees, particularly of small businesses. While the administration has tried to downplay the cancellation notices hitting policyholders on the individual market by noting they represent a relatively small fraction of the population, the swath of people who will be affected by the shakeup in employer-sponsored coverage will be much broader.
An analysis by the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative think tank, shows the administration anticipates half to two-thirds of small businesses would have policies canceled or be compelled to send workers onto the ObamaCare exchanges. They predict up to 100 million small and large business policies could be canceled next year.
Remember, the USCCB staff (and, more quietly, a number of bishops) backed this thing to the hilt, and frankly wanted an even more radically socialistic system.