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Cardinal Farrell: Priests Have No Role to Play in Marriage Prep October 10, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, asshatery, cultural marxism, Dallas Diocese, disaster, error, family, foolishness, Francis, General Catholic, Revolution, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, the struggle for the Church, unbelievable BS.
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Hey, that cardinal’s hat wasn’t going to land on his head all by itself.  It had to be earned.  Kevin Farrell may not pray much, have a great depth of spirituality, or even know much theology, but he sure as heck know who the piper is, and what tune is being called.

There are actually two aspects to this report.  One is the outrageous statement made by former Dallas bishop and now Cardinal Farrell, and the other is how the Catholic media presented this statement, at least in the form of the headline.

To cover the claim, first:

Marriage ministry needs to be done by married couples because priests have “no credibility in this area,” Cardinal Kevin Farrell, prefect of the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life, told a church gathering. [So, marriage is in the direct area of responsibility for Cardinal Farrell]

Delivering the keynote address to 500 delegates from the Diocese of Down and Connor at the Faith and Life convention in Belfast Sept. 30, Farrell discussed Pope Francis’ 2016 apostolic exhortation “Amoris Laetitia” (“The Joy of Love”) and appealed to parishes to establish study groups on the document and to train couples to teach, prepare, guide and accompany married couples. [Giving a talk to a large group of laity concerning “Faith and Life,” Cardinal Farrell chose to make a bold statement]

On the role of priests in marriage accompaniment and preparation, he said they had “no credibility when it comes to living the reality of marriage” even though they may know the principles, the philosophy and the theology. [This is manifestly incorrect.  Priests have the primary responsibility to train and form lay people in every aspect of life, but especially regarding the Seven Sacraments. More in a second.]

Speaking to Catholic News Service afterward, the Dublin-born former bishop of Dallas said parishes would have to be prepared to train laypeople for such a role, which he saw as a new model of accompaniment in line with the pope’s vision for the church…….[So is this really about what’s best for couples, or who provides the best catechesis, or is it about implementing an ideological agenda in the Church?]

……..Ministering by couples to couples is better done by “people who have walked in their shoes,” the cardinal said. He admitted he did not “have a clue” how to answer some of the questions on couples’ difficulties, which his own nieces and nephews had put to him. [Well that’s more the shame for you and your family, not to mention the Diocese of Dallas which you led for nearly a decade, and now the entire Church.  This claim is based on a logical fallacy, that only those who live an experience can speak sensibly on it. In point of fact, being buried knee deep in an experience can actually warp one to a point that making a sensible, helpful contribution on it is impossible – one is simply too close to the problem.  Even though Cardinal Farrell makes some statements about the laity needing to be trained, lay-led catechesis in the vast majority of the Church (re: Novus Ordo world) has been and remains a disaster.  Most laity are very poorly and narrowly educated, and what education they have received has been dominated by leftist/modernist suppositions.  It is very hard not to see this as yet another avenue by which to undermine the sanctity of marriage.  And, by the way, Cardinal, lay people have been doing the lion’s share of what a paltry excuse for “marriage prep” exists in the Church today.  Priests, largely sequestered in their offices as administrators and occasional “sacramental administrators,” have only rarely played a substantial role in marriage prep for decades.  Indeed, my wife and I received exceedingly poor marriage prep, consisting of two 1 1/2 hour meetings, from an old hippy couple in Austin, both divorced and remarried.  What shining example we received!  We didn’t learn diddly squat, except that sex is groovy and we should contracept.  There are exceptions to this sad practice, which has done so much already to undermine marriage in the Church, and turn American Catholics into creatures indistinguishable from the broader culture when it comes to marriage, and now you wish to visit the American/Western disaster upon the broader world (or has Cardinal Farrell so adopted his beloved leader’s ideology that he has convinced himself that it’s 1955 again, and mean old priests, casting poor divorced souls out of church left and right, refusing to hear their confessions, are giving lay people really severe, strict, morally impossible catechesis. What planet do these guys live on – or are their arguments really so weak they must create a straw man Church)?  Anyway,  those exceptions are far too rare, and generally concentrated in traditional parishes and the few brave, persecuted, orthodox Novus Ordo priests.]

“I have no experience of that and the majority of priests don’t have that experience,” Farrell said, noting that many of the married couples who attended the 2014 and 2015 Synod of Bishops on the family insisted that more lay couples be involved in marriage ministry. [Priests absolutely DO have, or CAN have, experience of a beautifully lived marital vocation, in the form of the witness provided by their parents!  This is where many great Saints and moral theologians, such as Alphonsus Maria de Ligouri, gained their experience, and it was sufficient to guide dozens of generations of married Catholics to sanctity.  It is only in this period of cold hearts and dead faith that the leadership of the Church find it necessary to invent all kinds of new failed programs to replace the old, successful ones, the ones that were given up for dead because they failed to “resonate with the new man.”  But the new man is the same as the old, it is only the faith of the new men in leadership which has failed.]

Well, we can certainly see that in Cardinal Farrell, Francis found the right man for his job of remaking the Church in his own image.

Now, if you’re like me, Cardinal Farrell was speaking quite boldly, even definitively.  He left no doubt that he feels that priests “have no credibility in this area.”  That’s a quite definitive statement.

So how did the Catholic press, especially Catholic News Service writer Sarah MacDonald, report this really remarkable declaration from Farrell?  Get this headline: “Prefect suggests couples can be better at marriage prep than priests.”  Hmmm.  Is that your takeaway from this?  That Cardinal Farrell suggested that priests could be better at marriage prep than priests? It read to me like he just came out and said it, like a bald statement of fact.

And so we see that fake news is not limited to the secular world!  That’s how you got Trump, Mzzz. MacDonald.

Beyond the differences, he is a Peronist Pope” – Lieutenant Governor of Buenos Aires, March 14, 2013, the day after Francis was elected Pope.

You’ll get one or two posts today, and like it!

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Dallas Own “Ultraliberal” Cardinal Farrell Attacks Correctio Signers……. October 5, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, Basics, Dallas Diocese, different religion, episcopate, error, General Catholic, Liturgy, persecution, Revolution, scandals, self-serving, Society, the struggle for the Church, unbelievable BS.
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…….and thus serves his patron and master.  GloriaTV calls Farrell ultraliberal – an assessment I would have argued with once but not so much today (Farrell is a veritable weathervane for the ecclesiastical winds) – and notes his line of ad hominem attack against the signers of the Correctio Filialis:

Pope Francis “is not a heretic” according to the ultraliberal Curia Cardinal Kevin Farrell, 70. Taking to cruxnow.com on October 2, Farrell attacked the Filial Correction by launching personal attacks against the signatories rather than by responding to their arguments. According to him the signatories “use any excuse just to attack him [Francis].”

In response to the interview, one of the signatories, Deacon Nick Donnelly, states on twitter that Francis “is not accused of being a heretic, but of promulgating heresy”.

During a NCR-interview in 2016, Farrell insinuated that Amoris Laetitia has the same authority as the Bible, “Basically this is the Holy Spirit speaking to us.”

Please don’t tell me what good things Bishop Farrell did while he was here.  First, that was then, this is now, but even more, he did a heckuva lot of bad things like totally ghettoizing the TLM and even blocking priests from offering Mass partially in Latin, Ad Orientem, or basically anything that substantially improved the reverence of the Mass. And that’s only his malfeasance with regard to the Liturgy.  He did a few things better than his seminary but on the grand scale – and as we find out more and more after his departure – he was just what you would expect a creature of McCarrick would be.

I will say that there is scant difference between “promulgating heresy” and being a heretic.  I suppose one can maintain the pious hope that Francis is acting in ignorant innocence with his manifold attacks upon the ancient Faith (get ready for further attacks on the Liturgy and Communion for protestants!), but I believe the massive evidence we have accrued in less than 5 years indicates that invincible ignorance is out of the question.  I am also becoming increasingly aware of very poignant, pained, and emotional personal interventions made by good souls to Francis to amend his ways, but he has coldly and brusquely dismissed all of these.  Perhaps some of these will make it to print one day, unfortunately what I have learned is too much of hearsay and unsubstantiated to print.

For some good news, Cardinal Farrell maintains that his small advisory role at the  Apostolic Signatura will not prevent him from pursuing formal correction of Francis should the situation demand it:

The nomination as a member of the Apostolic Signatura is “not a full-time position”, Cardinal Raymond Burke told journalists on Monday. He will assist in the work and serve as a judge when asked to do so.

Burke further stated according to Vaticanista Edward Pentin, that the nomination will not change nor delay his plans to issue a fraternal correction of Pope Francis if he further declines to answer the dubia.

I’d say the time for that correction is now, good Cardinal Burke.  However, I can understand delay if you are having difficulty finding others to join you in this correction, though I suspect with the Correctio out there are gathering support, now is about as good as time as you will find.

Please pray for Cardinal Burke and all those who are working to stop the total dissolution of the Church.  They need much support for strength.  I am personally praying that more bishops – especially some active ones- will sign the Correctio and then join Burke in his own correction.  Where things go from there will be in God’s hands, but I pray the truth may see the light of day and the Lord’s will be done.

USCCB Continues Misinformation Campaign on DACA, Trump, Immigration October 3, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, cultural marxism, Dallas Diocese, error, General Catholic, Immigration, It's all about the $$$, pr stunts, self-serving, Society, the struggle for the Church.
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Our diocesan newspaper some weeks ago had an article repealing Trump’s use of an executive order to repeal Obama’s executive order instituting the so-called Dream Act, or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).  DACA has been surrounded by lies and misinformation ever since Obama enacted it, probably illegally and certainly unconstitutionally back in 2012.  The USCCB has continually been in the forefront of this campaign.  I’ll excerpt a few brief bits from the article to demonstrate how this dezinformatsiya campaign works:

Lisette Moreno was just 5 years old when her parents brought her from Mexico to the United States……..[The setup Obama and the Left has used to sell DACA is that we are talking about poor teens and even younger, just little kids we’d be throwing out of the country to fend for themselves in a hellish Mexico.  Because that’s how the Left views third world countries.  If not quite kids, they’re at least very young, maybe college students, etc. How could we be so mean?]

………Moreno is an active parishioner at the Cathedral Shrine of the Virgin of Guadalupe, and soon she and upwards of 800,000 people who were brought to the United States by their parents without documents could face loss of work documents and immediate deportation from a land that they know to one that is culturally in their blood, but foreign nonetheless. [Have there been any mass deportations, yet?  Any concrete plans developing to do so?  Or is this really more about overturning what was a politically unpopular and unconstitutional move – by executive action only, Congress was not involved, no law was every passed – in the first place?]

…….”When we were brought here as children, we went to school and our teachers taught us to dream big; our teachers taught us to progress, to be better, to set a goal and accomplish it,” said Moreno, who is now 34[They buried that little revelation at the end of the 6th paragraph in, well past the point when most people would have stopped reading.  So this is no kid. This is a grown woman, becoming close to middle-aged. Also, if she came here when she was 5, that means she came here 29 years ago, or 1988.  Which is, quite interestingly, just two years after the first shamnesty passed by Reagan, which was promised to be a “totes swearsie!” one time deal that would never recur, after which 2.5 million illegal immigrants were granted instant citizenship, the border would be closed firmly and we’d never have an illegal immigration crisis again. The lead up to the first amnesty was very well known.  But her parents came later, anyway. Did her parents give a thought to what might happen if they were deported, even split up, as was certainly very possible?  Does this Moreno show more allegiance to the United States than to Mexico? Does she still send remittances back?]

[Follows a parade of sad, meaningless, self-serving quotes from both our Bishop Burns and other figures in the Church]………Denouncements, criticisms, and outrage have come from many sectors across society: universities, Fortune 500 companies, small businesses, faith communities, and non-profit organizations. [All of which means absolutely nothing, since Trump was elected precisely to get a handle on the totally chaotic situation regarding illegal immigration and the southern border. A substantial majority of Americans oppose the “Dream Act” and the current immigration policy and desire a wall be built to drastically limit immigration (and drugs, and sex trafficking of minors, and a thousand other evils). I also note that every single one of the organizations listed either stands to benefit directly from continued unconstrained mass immigration through use of cheap labor/wage depression of native citizens, or through ideological alignment (adherence to leftism).]

……….Father Cruz Calderon, pastor of Santa Clara Catholic Church in Oak Cliff, called for prayers to unite, not divide. [See, when it’s what he wants, it’s unity.  If not, it’s division. Get it?]

“In my opinion, it no longer is about protecting and leading a country, but about authoritarianism,” he said. “This appears to be a partisan fight to revoke laws made by a previous administration to systematically say that those laws were wrong.” [First of all, it’s not a law.  A law is passed by Congress.  It was an executive order, and probably unconstitutional. And yes, guess what, the people rejected the unpopular actions of that previous Obama administration, and wanted them overturned.  So, we elected a new president who promised to do just that.  Your disliking the result is utterly immaterial, as is your attempt to calumniate without justification the duly elected President.Just so we’re clear, yes, very many Americans feel, with eminent justification, that pretty much everything the former occupant of the White House did was wrong.]

…….Moreno, one of the founders of the Peace and Justice Commission at the cathedral………[And we get that little revelation 20 paragraphs in.  So, she’s not exactly an unbiased observer, either.  She’s a dedicated activist.]

Sadly, and frustratingly, Trump has indicated he’d be happy to reinstitute DACA so long as it is done legally and constitutionally, e.g., through Congress. I really hope that doesn’t come to pass, especially so long as brick one has not been laid on the much-promised wall.

We can expect much more lobbying from the institutional Catholic press in favor of just that.  And, I am equally certain, even more disinformation and constant appeals to emotion.  The key point is to get people feeling and not thinking.  That’s exactly what articles like the above are designed to elicit, and are part and parcel of any well-orchestrated leftist campaign.

But, I hear our new Bishop Burns, in spite of his quotes in the article I declined to excerpt, is much more friendly to the Latin Mass than was his predecessor, who made it absolutely clear that there would never be a TLM outside of Mater Dei so long as he was around.  I even understand that a priest or two has been “given permission” – though by canon law none is required – to offer Mass Ad Orientem again, which now Cardinal Farrell had firmly squashed.

There might even be a possibility for TLMs outside Mater Dei, and in the northern part of the Diocese where there still exists much latent unsatisfied demand.  But let me counsel you folks, on the outside chance this occurs and there is a TLM in the north deanery, ATTEND IT.  Don’t let it die for lack of support.  There were many reasons the Novus Ordo Latin in Plano at St. Mark died, it was intended to be unsuccessful from the start, but, not showing up gave Farrell and his allies all the reason they needed to cancel it and to never permit such an “experiment” again.  Don’t let that happen, especially with a TLM.

Videos from Fatima Rosary Procession 09/13/2017 September 14, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in Art and Architecture, awesomeness, Basics, Christendom, Dallas Diocese, fightback, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Latin Mass, Our Lady, Restoration, sanctity, Spiritual Warfare, Tradition, true leadership, Victory, Virtue.
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For the fifth month in a row, Mater Dei FSSP parish in Irving, TX, held a Rosary Procession in honor of the 100th anniversary of Our Lady of Fatima.  The final centennial procession will be held Friday, October 13 at 7pm and will process along public streets (SH 356/Irving Blvd) from Mater Dei to Trinity View Park at the Irving/Dallas border.

Attendance was very good last night.  I would guesstimate between 250 and 300 people attended.  And this isn’t even the “big” procession! See below.  

I love what the organizers have done with the lighting of Our Lady for these night processions.  It was really beautiful.

Videos below.  I did not capture every moment of the procession, which took over half an hour, but did get most major portions.  It gives a flavor for it, anyway, which is not bad, considering I didn’t plan on recording ahead of time, I just decided to on the spot.

Filmed by hand.  There is some jiggly screen, but not too much, I don’t think.  If that bothers you, you might not want to watch.

Holy Hour in Various Parishes of Dallas Diocese Tonight at 7pm September 7, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, episcopate, Eucharist, fightback, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Latin Mass, sanctity, Spiritual Warfare, the struggle for the Church, Tradition, Virtue.
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Bishop Edward J. Burns has asked the 74 Catholic churches in the Diocese of Dallas to hold a Holy Hour with Eucharistic Adoration on Thursday, September 7, 2017 at seven o’clock in the evening. Bishop Burns will preside at the Holy Hour at the Cathedral Shrine of the Virgin of Guadalupe at 2215 Ross Avenue in Downtown Dallas. He also asked that all churches in the diocese ring their bells five minutes before the Holy Hour begins. [Dang.  Wish we had some bells to ring.]

According to Bishop Burns, “This is an opportunity for Catholics to come together to pray for those affected by the hurricane, and in particular for those who have lost their lives. This is something that is being done, to the extent possible, in every diocese in Texas as an act of solidarity and prayerful support with our suffering brothers and sisters.” [Perhaps we should also make acts of reparation during this Holy Hour for the sins of our nation which are bringing Lord knows what calamities down upon us.]

The Bishop has asked that parishes also pray the Rosary before Masses on September 9th and 10. Donated Rosary beads will be distributed before Mass and gathered up to be given to evacuees with the message that the prayer had been offered for them and all victims of Hurricane Harvey.

Mater Dei parish in Irving will be joining all the parishes in the diocese to offer a Holy Hour on Thursday evening for those affected by Hurricane Harvey. At Mater Dei, Benediction and Adoration begin immediately after the 6:30p Mass on Thursday, September 7th and will last for one hour.

As for other parishes, I really don’t know which are joining in this spiritual work of mercy.  I haven’t time to check.  Time is getting short, but you might call to see if your parish is joining in this.  I know of several which are not participating.

I do very much appreciate Bishop Burns calling for the Holy Hour, and for leading one himself at the Cathedral.  I’ll be at Mater Dei.

h/t reader MJD

White Rose Fundraising Dinner Moved to November 17! August 29, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, awesomeness, Basics, contraception, Dallas Diocese, fightback, fun, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Restoration, sanctity, Virtue.
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A very important update to a previous post, the White Rose Women’s Center benefit dinner featuring Fr. Shannon Boquet of Human Life International has been moved from October 7 – where it was contemporaneous with the 100th Anniversary Fatima Conference in Irving – to November 17.

Location remains the same.  I am so glad to hear this and pray many souls will be able to attend the benefit for this most worthy organization, aiding women contemplating abortion.

Thank you to the kind soul who sent this update notice on to me.  I have idea who it was – I got it anonymously via mail – but thank you.

All other pertinent information about the benefit dinner is at my previous post.

10th Annual White Rose Women’s Center Fundraising Dinner Oct 7th August 22, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, contraception, Dallas Diocese, fightback, fun, General Catholic, Grace, priests, sanctity, Society, Spiritual Warfare, Virtue.
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I feel bad about the timing for St. Joseph’s Helpers, the fundraising arm of the White Rose Women’s Centers in the Dallas area.  Their 10th annual benefit dinner featuring Father Shenan Boquet of Human Life International is on the same date as the major Fatima conference featuring Cardinal Burke and a bevy of many other major draws.  White Rose does such wonderful work as a Catholic crisis pregnancy center, I pray this fundraiser is still well-attended in spite of the conflict.  One must imagine, however, that a pro-life fundraiser and the Fatima conference are going to compete in some respects for interest from the same group of faithful Catholics in the area.

Having said that, the Diocese of Dallas loves to boast of the fact that there are well over 1 million Catholics in the diocese, so surely there should be more than enough to make both events well attended. It’s just a shame two such desirable, high profile events such as this have to overlap to some extent (thinking, though, the Fatima conference will wrap up an hour or so before the White Rose dinner – that is, if you don’t go to the Cardinal Burke honorary dinner at the conclusion of the Fatima conference!).

At any rate, tix are $150 each or $1500 for a table for 10.  Most details below.  You can register here.

Cardinal Burke Headlining Fatima Conference in Dallas, Irving October 6-7 August 10, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, Dallas Diocese, fightback, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Our Lady, Restoration, the struggle for the Church, true leadership, Virtue.
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Just in time for the 100th anniversary. Most excellent.  Details below.  There are a number of speakers at the event, mostly drawn from the Catholic Answers crowd:

I learned a lot from Fr. John Trigilio during my initial conversion.  That show Web of Faith he hosted on EWTN was really good for me.  It was my favorite Catholic program for a time.

I also like John Henry Westen.  The guy is a rock, and has faced a lot of persecution for this efforts defending Holy Mother Church and the sanctity of life.

Cardinal Burke is to offer Mass.  No word on whether it will be a TLM or Novus Ordo, but my money would be on the latter, sadly.  The Friday Mass at St. Monica will definitely be Novus Ordo.

The website for the event is here.  The event costs $137 per individual if you buy tickets before Aug 31, after that, $159.

Schedule below:

I’d love to go, but this is too high for us.  Also I will be out of town that weekend at a family reunion in beautiful downtown Harper, Texas.

Catholic Homeschooling Conference in Arlington July 21-22 July 10, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, Dallas Diocese, Domestic Church, family, fun, General Catholic, Latin Mass, priests, Restoration, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
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The annual Immaculate Heart of Mary Homeschool Conference will be held July 21-22 at the Arlington Convention Center, it’s usual location.  If you’ve been in the past you know there will be talks from reverent and orthodox (and usually traditional) priests, home education experts, and a large display of wares from homeschooling resource centers like Seton, Kolbe Academy, Our Lady of Victory, etc.

The two priest speakers this year both have close familiarity with homeschooling and are general supporters of home education.  One is Mater Dei’s own pastor Fr. Thomas Longua, and the other is Father James Yamauchi, now parish administrator (but not pastor) of St. Martin of Tours in Forney.  I have known Fr. Yamauchi and his family for years.  Fr. Yamauchi was homeschooled for several  years.

Admission is free for this conference and they still have space available.  Donations are of course appreciated.  Parking is $5 per day.  There is no child care available and children are allowed but not recommended to attend, as the conference is focused on teachers.

It’s been a while but we’ve been before and it’s a good conference, especially for those just starting out in homeschooling or interested in learning about the many great resources available for Catholic families to use this method of teaching their children, which is so strongly recommended by so many good priests as the best method of educating children in this time of general societal and ecclesiastical chaos.  If you’re even considering trying homeschooling I’d strongly recommend attending.  You don’t have to follow any one particular curriculum.

We are truly blessed to live in a time where educating children at home is in some ways easier than ever before.  The pioneers of homeschooling back in the 70s and 80s did not have the resources so many of us take for granted.  The availability of all these resources, and the political movement that forced governments to de-criminalize homeschooling and remove onerous restrictions in most locales (Texas, for one, Deo Gratias), is something to be very much thankful for.  While corruption, error, and decadence have ruined many means of forming young people to be intelligent and godly, Our Blessed Lord has opened other means to carry out the duty He demands of all parents, to raise up souls capable of knowing, loving, and serving God throughout their life.  We bear many terrible burdens in this age, but also benefit from amazing benefits.

BTW, the picture they have on the conference website of Fr. Longua is pretty old, and some folks might not recognize him in person based on it. Here’s a much more recent one, taken at my favorite shopping destination in Irving, Porter’s Army Navy (and gun) Store:

Owner Steve Porter lives on my street and is a good Catholic.  His business is closed on Sundays, naturally, but you should check it out any other day of the week!  I’ve bought a couple of guns there.  Good people.

But what do you think of the hat?  It’s ostensibly for canoeing and fishing, but I think Father was trying to make a fashion statement.

Is There a PR Campaign Against Traditionalists…….. May 25, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, catachesis, Dallas Diocese, General Catholic, Grace, Interior Life, Latin Mass, mortification, scandals, Society, the struggle for the Church, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
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…….or is there a resurgence in stereotypical “bad Trad” behavior in parishes that offer the TLM?

Dear reader SB, who I value so much in real life as a great sounding board to bounce ideas off, since SB has been around the TLM since ’91 (two decades more than me), sent me a link to this post at Unam Sanctam Catholicam some time ago.  I had been meaning to get to it, but then a few days ago another reader, MFG, sent me links to two other similar postings (here and here).  MFG wondered if this was perhaps part of some campaign to either give TLMers a bad name or to put them in a box, the suspicion being that perhaps this effort had something to do with the looming SSPX “reconciliation.”

Now, about these posts and the posters.  Of the three, I have total respect for Unam Sanctam Catholicam and know he’s a straight shooter duly reporting what he’s been told.  I also know there is no “agenda” there save perhaps for genuine concern about the health of TLM communities and the continued availability of the ancient Mass.  We all know Father Z and you can draw your own conclusions.  As for the final link above, it’s from the progressive-modernist Commonweal and I would treat any report by them with great skepticism.

Tying all this together for me personally was two sermons given by our pastor lately basically also imploring the faithful not to be “bad trads” by making others feel bad or engaging in much, if any, fraternal correction save in obvious or dire situations.

I won’t get into any of the particular posts but I’ll just share my own experience and my take on this sudden rash of posts seeming to say very much the same thing.  But before I do that I should share a bit about me.  Perhaps you’ve noticed but I really don’t give two shakes what anybody thinks about me.  That’s not entirely true – I’m extremely concerned what my wife, children, and other family and close friends think of me – but generally I’m not out to get people’s approval.  If they like me, fine, if they think I’m an asshole, bully for you and move on along.  I’ve also got a fairly thick skin and don’t mind sharing my opinion (obviously) nor hearing those of others, especially from those I have learned through experience to respect.  I’m generally reserved in real life but if people ask my opinion or I get drawn into a conversation then I don’t mind sharing it.  Having said that, save for close friends and family directly seeking counsel, I virtually never “correct” anyone in their behavior even if I have an issue with it.  However, I’m also perfectly willing to hear correction or exhortations to do better from others and I gladly received just such an exhortation as recently as last week.  Much depends on the source and how it is conveyed, of course.

That being said, the report I take the most seriously is the one from Unam Sanctam Catholicam (USC).  As I said, I trust the source implicitly but I’ve got to say I have rarely heard or seen any evidence of the type of behavior he’s describing – the typical trads complaining because the maniple is tied wrong or the Latin pronunciation is inexact.  I’ll take USCs word for it that he heard that from certain priests but I’m a bit skeptical that the priests were really receiving hyper-critical comments with any regularity.  There could also be a phenomenon at work where a priest going out on a limb expects a lot of praise and adulation from those he’s taking a risk for – and offering the TLM in most dioceses is hardly career enhancing and often career-threatening, so I certainly understand the expectation of praise from the faithful – which might cause even occasional negative comments to be blown out of proportion.  Now really I don’t know anything about the situation or the priests involved so I really shouldn’t comment but I’ll simply state this kind of hyper-critical behavior is, in my experience, quite rare.  It’s also so stereotypical of the “bad trad” behavior that was repeated uncritically in the conservativish Catholic press for a quarter century or more that it sort of sets off alarm bells in the back of my mind.  That’s all I’ll say about that.

Moving onto the subject of the local sermons, an exhortation to be very careful when applying fraternal correction, I thought the priest might have gone a bit far in some of his examples/verbiage but the overall point was certainly fine and well-taken.  I am certain this sermon was a reaction to reports/complaints the priest has received.  Now whether those episodes of correction that led to complaints were really malicious or simply misplaced zeal – or even people trying to assuage their own consciences that they are doing right, finding strength in number or whatever – I tend to imagine it is the latter far more than the former.

I also realize not everyone is like me.  Whereas I might hear someone extolling me to lead my family more in communal prayer as a well-meaning concern for my soul and the souls of my family, some people find this kind of talk threatening or as some kind of rebuke.  Perhaps it’s just my jerky nature but when someone goes to pieces because another person extolled the virtues of homeschooling to them (assuming decent tact and decorum) and they’re not homeschooling, well, toughen up buttercup.  That’s no reason to have a 30 minute crying jag in Father’s office.  Again, much would depend on the nature of the relationship between the people involved and what exactly was said, but I’m extremely skeptical that there is much in the way of malicious put-downs or hyper-critical correction going on – at least in the limited TLM communities I’ve been exposed to.

More often than not it’s probably just someone a little bit too on fire for a certain subject that comes on a bit strong.  I don’t see that as “bad Trad” behavior at all.  It’s probably just an error of judgment or a mild personality defect.

Really though outside relatively close personal relationships or directly-sought counsel we lay people probably don’t need to be doing a great deal of direct correcting of each other.  If you see something amiss repeatedly with someone who should no better, probably the best course of action is to quietly bring it to the attention of the competent priest and let them deal with it.  In my experience, they will generally follow through (and do a better job than we would), though it may not happen instantly as we would like.  (or am I being squishy here?  Is the crisis in the Faith so dire the times demand broad sweeping intervention into other’s business?)

At the same time I also think priests and laity should not be so delicate as to get upset about perceived correction (which may be simply a misinterpreted general exhortation).  The priests related by USC, especially, I think did not have the right reasons for offering the TLM.  Certainly there is a pastoral side to making the TLM available, but the real reason for offering ANY Mass is to render worthy honor and glory to God.  The Mass is the ONLY efficacious Sacrifice that is pleasing to God.  Since the TLM is so demonstrably superior in both form and effect every priest should be eager to offer the TLM at every possible alternative, and should not get discouraged if the faithful are not as appreciative and uncritical as he would like.  That’s probably expecting too much from frail human nature but nevertheless I think priests who stop offering the TLM because the laity are not docile enough or appreciative enough for his taste is, I think, pretty weak tea.

As to whether this is an anti-TLM PR campaign I think probably not, it’s probably just coincidence, but you know the old Hardy Boy’s formula: once is happenstance, twice is coincidence, thrice is CONSPIRACY!!  I think in this internet age, however, where people are hard up for content and want to attract attention, that formula probably needs some modification.

What do you think, or what is your experience?  Is there still a problem of mean ‘ol judgy trads wagging their fingers in innocent faces and driving people away from the TLM?  The way our local parish is growing, I’d have to say their failing if their intent is to keep people away.  Is there a problem with maybe a bit too zealous, perhaps a bit brittle and damaged trads getting too much into other’s business?  I still think my answer would be generally no (SB says she used to see this as a big problem, but not so much anymore).

Or perhaps are Trads and Trad priests maybe so set in their ways and so sure of being right they can’t take correction even when it’s well placed and deserved?