Monday, April 18, 2016

Trads are a little more flexible


The poor old Pope seems to be getting bashed by various Italian journalist Magister and Socci for example. I have always said that he is essentially an Argentinian Peronist, left of centre, yes but more a populist, so no wonder those within the Church, especially actively involved tend to be critical, whilst the masses, especially the media and even the secularly powerful adore him. Gagliaducci talks about his popularism in his column this week.

 When I bounded up to a couple of Argentinians from Buenos Aires to congratulate them on his election the day after, they met me with tight lips and stony faces and told me that they had always hated Jorge Bergoglio. Just after his election, when newspapers like the Guardian were trying to lay on him support for the Government against dissidents in the 'Dirty War', that proved baseless but what did emerge was his own rather tortured relationship with his own Jesuit Order. He had certainly brought division to the Argentinian Province, which they are still suffering from when he was Provincial, half loved him and half hated him. His own relationship with the Superior General Peter Hans Kolvenbach was so bad that it was not until he was Pope that he was allowed to enter a Jesuit house.

He has always been divisive, it is his nature. Reading the blogosphere recently, this division seems to still be there, in fact it is intensifying. The two Synods on the family were deeply divided and brought to the surface many divisions in the Church, the Church after Beroglio will be more divided than the Church was before him.
Cardinal Burke has been saying Amoris Laetitia changes nothing, it is interesting how his failure to condemn or at least to side with those who are deeply disturbed by this document have vented their anger against him.

Trads, rather than Neo-Cons, are always a little more flexible, a little less alarmists. If you are still faithful after have seen what appeared to be the total destruction of everything you had loved: the Mass of Ages, which you had always been told was unchangeable swept away and, although mistakenly, were told it was now illicit or forbidden, if countless churches stripped of their furnishings, altars replaced by a cheap wooden table, if you had seen priests dancing up the aisle or the Bread of Life treated with irreverence. If it seems to be the Pope rather than some lunatic priest or renegade bishop that is at the back of all this, then perhaps one is less likely to see all as catastrophic and place one's trust in Jesus Christ, the Lord of history, and not in Princes, even in the most exalted of the princes of the Church.

17 comments:

JARay said...

I confess that I am one of those who sincerely hopes that Pope Francis moves on and vacates the Papacy. He has created so much division and instigated so much uncertainty that I can happily say that I would much prefer a return to the likes of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. I pray that this will indeed happen.

Matthew Roth said...

All we want is to do the things which are Catholic, to modify an expression my twenty-something friends and I use. That is, we want to pray the traditional Mass and the office. Well, as traditional as we can...the Pian psalter and Urban hymns are challenges, and the Holy Week reforms make me weep. We want to pray for the salvation of souls and the removal in ourselves of all that which is contrary to charity. We want to, as best we can, do good and avoid evil. It isn’t that hard. The post-VII emphasis on holiness in the lay state coinciding with clerical laxity and the Novus Ordo have profoundly complicated things.

Paul Hellyer said...

It's all very sad. True, Our Lord is the head of the Church but it would help if we had a Pope we could respect. A Pope who defended orthodoxy. A Pope who did not try to change the discipline of the sacraments. We would be a lot happier.

Paul Gubbels said...

It is so sad that your blog is so attractive to "knockers" who find fault with so much of thew modern church. Where do you think the Holy Spirit figures in all this?
We believe that choices for a Pope are enlightened yet the comments from the Trads yearn for a church of yesteryear and that all the work of the last elective process was wrong. Well, there will not be a reversion and a "correction" is never going to happen. I and so many of my co-believers see that the church is on the right track in making "our" church more relevant. Misery loves company but a joyfull heart seems to elude the knockers! Lighten up people and look for the goodness which has evolved since the new Pope was elected. Reversion to what was is not going to bring back the triumphalism which you think is our right. Living the Gospel is hard but an anachronistic Church is far from the thoughts of most Catholics (that I know anyway). The Lord Jesus would be much more comfortable with the Pope's call for "the smell of the sheep".

David O'Neill said...

In my mind we had to expect change when he was elected. He immediately discarded those things that mark the Pope as a special man by deciding not to wear the dress of a Pope, not to live in the papal apartments. Doesn't this look a little like false modesty? The office makes the man & not the man the office!

Nicolas Bellord said...

What we should be looking for is salvation and one of the conditions for that is following Christ's commandments. One therefore has to know what those commandments are. Amoris Laetitia and the surrounding comments by the Pope himself and the likes of Cardinal Schonborn are so confusing that they are not much use in that respect. It is all just smoke and mirrors or what the Pope presumably means by 'lio' which I take it has a slightly different meaning from the Portuguese 'lixo' which is what we put in the bin at the side of the road.

Nicolas Bellord said...

Dear Mr Gubbels

Can you please let us know whether you think the Pope has decided that a person who has divorced and is in a new sexual relationship - 'marriage' - is entitled to receive communion in certain circumstances. If that is the case we 'knockers' are very concerned as it seems to go clearly against the teaching of Christ who said such a person was committing adultery and thus in a state of mortal sin and thus ineligible to receive communion. There seem to many who think the Pope has done just this and if he has and if he is wrong then many souls will be led astray in your modern relevant Church.

Sixupman said...

" .... although mistakenly ...."? Father, your Charity knows no bounds!

Marie said...

I am so dishearten by our Church.

Say what you will about our Pope, I have never had so many non-Catholics honestly approach me with questions about my faith. Most of them approach me with enough of an open mind to sit down and discuss the matter over coffee. That has never happened before. It is not hard to point out that the media is in the business of spinning the news. They completely understand things may not be reported accurately but it was enough to pique their curiosity.

Those who hold stubbornly to the idea that Catholics are going to come into "modern times" will only ever hear what they wish to hear. That's not the Pope's fault.

As for inside the Church, we have a terrible attitude. If we are not being nasty and grumpy to each other we are full of despair over the idea there is a conspiracy behind every corner. Where is our joy? Our trust? Our love?

I think our Pope, even if he is a bad Pope, is the least of our problems.

Sadie Vacantist said...

I was reading recently that the economics department of the University of Texas was riddled with communists for most of the 20th century. This is worth noting before discussing humanities and social science departments in the less socially conservative parts of the USA if not the World rather than a “redneck” state like Texas. Yet the narrative driven by FI’s predecessor is that the documents of Vatican II could be read “in the light of tradition” as part of some “hermeneutic of continuity” project. This is complete nonsense and has been since the war for the simple reason there is nobody capable of reading anything, from any discipline, in the “light of tradition” in our modern World let alone conciliar documents or theology in general. B16’s papacy is no less flawed than F1’s. I accept that Benedict is perhaps more disarming than Francis (alpha males might beg to differ on this point) but I see no discontinuity between the two.

Jeremy said...

Yearning for a 'Church of yesteryear' is neither good nor bad. It is a possible solution whilst the post-Conciliar Church lurches further and further from all it ever stood for. This Pope, whose thought and actions I find incomprehensible followed a Pope I very much admired and understood. But I am sure that continuing uncritically to pursue syndrome of the 'Emperor's New Clothes' of the last 50 years cannot go on IMHO.

Mark Lambert said...

The liberal, progressive Church is ultimately sterile. One only has to look to the vocation tally to see the way things will be in the future. This is the last gasp of a dying breed. I think Pope Francis' will be soon forgotten and I hope this will be a lesson to all those seeking a progressive pope.

Chrissy said...

I don't think that Francis will be soon forgotten, I believe that he will be a constant reminder of the damage that he has done to our church.

Thomas said...

Whatever view one takes of this (or any other) papacy, we do *not* believe that "choices for a Pope are enlightened" and that the "elective process" is somehow infallible or necessarily inspired by the Holy Spirit. That is no part of our Catholic faith. In fact believing it would mean accepting that the Holy Spirit has taken several notable and lamentable leaves of absence during the Church's long history! The man who is chosen as bishop of Rome, by whatever human process, as long as it is recognised and accepted as canonical, thereby becomes the successor of St. Peter. As such he is promised certain assistances in protecting the Apostolic faith in certain special circumstances. He may be a good Pope or a terrible one, and we have had both over the centuries plus many who were unremarkable and workaday (an attractive sounding option sometimes!). But he does not become simply by virtue of the office he holds a personally inspired prophet. Nor is he meant to be a religious CEO who imposes his own agenda and individual perceptions on the Church as a whole.

pattif said...

While I think I understand where you're coming from, I am firmly convinced that the Church *really* needs another 600 years to elapse before the next papal resignation.

Jacobi said...

The Pope is certainly a populist, a species which thrives in Argentina, a country which incidently, I know well. My opinion was formed within minutes when he came on to the balcony in the Vatican and said, not peace be with you, but good afternoon!

The split in the Church is now confirmed. We have another reformation and the Pope has done nothing to prevent it and worse still, nothing to condemn it.

I do not as a Catholic like to say this, but, I understand and share your view Father, about the apparent destruction of every thing you have loved .

mark wauck said...

Following on from Gagliarducci yesterday re Bergoglio's "populism", Sandro Magister today has an excellent blog “The People, Mystical Category”--The Political Vision of the South American Pope which includes translated excerpts from Loris Zanatta's Il Papa Peronista which are quite illuminating.