Monday, June 15, 2015

Moral High Ground

Image result for creationWhen I was first ordained I was very much into setting up Justice and Peace Groups, but I soon became rather jaded, the whole Catholic J&P network just seemed to be dominated by people who wanted to undermine pretty basic Catholic teaching, They didn't share what I considered the Church to be saying about what humanity is, they didn't seem to value human life from conception to natural death, and those who did didn't place much value on what lay in between or be much concerned by social injustice.

I think many orthodox Catholics might share my feelings. Reading stuff on the web, amongst some there seems to be a dread of Pope Francis' new encyclical on the environment, I welcome it as a chance to offer the world a radically different way of living, that actually offers hope to our rather hopeless society and return the Christianity to the moral high ground where it can challenge 'the world the flesh and the devil'..

One of our excellent bishops, Bishop Egan had a rather good Pastoral Letter for last weekend.


Cosmos said...

I just wonder if, stepping back and being honest, there is really anything to suggest that the Pope is intellectually or spiritually capable of offering the world a "radically different way of living." I just don't see it.

Nothing I have read about Argentina or Buenos Aires under his watch suggest that some new, bold, authentic way of living the faith was rising up and reinvigorating the local Church. The Church there was and is a mess, as far as I can tell. In fact, when the Pope was elected, it seemed like the photograph of him takign the subway and stories of his cooking his own dinner were his primary qualifications. It sounded like the Church was looking for some good PR, not a man with a clear and successful spiritual vision (like, say, JPII). Has anyone ever read anything that he has written before he was Pope?

When the Pope was first appointed, he warned us that the Church can't be just one more NGO. At first this statement gave me great hope, but now I think he was (as we all often do) warning himself. He was inadvertently giving us a picture of what we were in store for. The program he and many of his closest contributors have embraced often sounds pretty darn close to a politically progressive NGO. The Pope is a clever man and is clearly conscious of being labeled in this manner, and so he continually insists, "Plus Jesus! Plus Jesus! It must start with Jesus!" But I am not sure how much that part of his message is heard or how consistent it is with the rest of the program. In the end, the groups that are most empowered and emboldened under his watch are those of the international political left (in undermining the influence of international capitalism, he lowers the Church's guard against the emerging godless, internationalist bureaucracy). Sure the "old white" man holds on to the silly traditions of his Church, especially the Romantic ones that link him in solidarity to the poor people (like Marian devotions), but all in all, the big message is palatable: be a "good person," that is all that God really cares about; with a few exceptions (abortion), that means something very much like being a good social progressive.

Gregkanga said...

Many of the Church hierarchy seem to think that the primary mission of the Church is social justice and equality, and saving the poor, as well as the environment of course. This forms the basis of their ecclesiology and ministry. They have forgotten, and some conveniently of course, that the essence of Christianity is a sincere and total participation in the mystery of the Incarnation, the Christological mystery, of which the Mass is the fullest and highest expression and realisation. Evangelising the world and leading people to this source and summit has been discarded by many of the stewards of these Mysteries because personal and interior evangelisation has been abandoned. Besides, propagating social justice and caring for the poor is so much easier. Herein lies the root of mess the Church is in.

Liam Ronan said...

The only radically different way of living is to follow and unabashedly proclaim Our Lord, the Way and the Truth and the Life.

Mary said...

Unfortunately, I have to disagree, Father Blake. Everything from Pope Francis smacks of heresy, hypocrisy and lies. He attacks Christ's teachings and God's laws, attacks the faithful, and empowers the corrupt. As a young woman, I might have fallen for it, buy as you yourself wrote, those who speak the loudest about social justice tend to only be exploiting the premise for other agenda... No one who truly cares about the poor, could be as indifferent to the pain imposed by what Francis and his leftist fellow travellers advocate. His contempt for what his demanded mass immigration has done to the poor citizens in western countries. Poor families, young adults, seniors and the disabled made homeless as instant preferences is given to foreign nationals. Christ didn't tell the wealthy man to throw his poor neighbors out on the street, and give their homes, jobs and possessions to poor foreigners, so he could enrich himself even more. His trite responses to the slaughter of Middle Eastern Christians, putting the onus on them to 'dialogue' He ignores fact the koran he calls 'sacred' teaches hatred and murder. His hateful, insidious attacks against good and faithful clergy, his feigning concern for abused children, while he himself, covered up for and kept private the names of child predators who served under him in Buenos Aires, his empowering Wuerl , Danneels, and others despite their documented histories of cover ups & sinful behavior. Jesus Christ called for us to think, examine our consciences and to choose to follow God's laws. He was consistent in all things, and warned His followers against those whose actions don't match their words. He taught that we shouldn't serve the world's interests, but serve God. Francis seems more interested in condoning sin, corrupting the innocent.

What Francis advocates is what all Marxists advocate, the fascistic plantation slavery state, on a global scale. Like all Marxists, Francis is a materialist, he serves mammon, not God.

Fr Ray Blake said...

Mary, I mistrust most reports of the Pope. Rather like the Council there is a the real thing and the media thing, through the media fog he still remains unknown.

Liam Ronan said...

Francis is charged with with preserving the Deposit of Faith intact, unchanged, and spreading that Faith to all mankind. Pray God that he will do that.

My opinion is that Francis himself is largely, if not entirely, responsible for creating the 'fog'surrounding him, having situated himself (and hence many of his utterances)in such obscure circumstances as the Casa Santa Marta, private interviews, air planes,, and expressing his public and private thoughts so disjointedly and emotively, that whether by accident or design they have become a Rohrschach test for both the Faithful and the media.

What is wanted is less Franciscan fog and more foghorn, I think.

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