On top of that no one would ever voice contempt for the pope or mock His Holiness. It was simply unheard of prior to the Council. But now the "spirit of Vatican II" affects these neo-catholics. I have always felt that they are more Protestant than Catholic. They seem to think the Church is ruled by the laity and if the laity don't get what they want, they form a new community--very, very Protestant to say the least!
Thus Fr. Dwight Longenecker at his blog hits the nail on the head! Who would know better than an Evangelical Protestant who became an Episcopal priest and then converted to Roman Catholicism and was allowed under the pastoral provision of Pope St. John Paul II to be ordained a Catholic priest although married with a young family!
Ten Traits of Catholic Fundamentalism
March 7, 2016 byWithin Catholic ultra traditionalist circles a new wave of ugliness has arisen. Numerous traditionalist blogs, websites and publications spew disrespectful hatred towards the Catholic church. They mock the Mass by despising the “Novus Ordo” they denigrate the Holy Father referring to him as “Pope Frank” or “Bergoglio” and refer to their mother the Catholic Church with adolescent disrespect as “FrancisChurch”.
I avoid commenting on the filth because, why wallow in sewage? I’m not going to link to the aggregators and websites in question because if you’re interested all you have to do is snoop around a little and follow a few links. You’ll see how they lie, misrepresent and tear down fellow Catholics, how these self appointed prophets ridicule, gossip and slander their fathers in God, and how these self righteous, pretentious Pharisees vomit their bile on all they meet.
It is pointless to ever argue with these people because they are always right. They have no true repentance in their hearts, but are driven by the worst kind of pride: spiritual pride.
Instead of arguing I would like to point out what is going on. First of all, I think it is unfair to use the term “traditionalist” for these people because it pulls down the many good, sensible and holy Catholics who are traditionalist by nature and by their devotions and worship. These people are my friends and family. I am on their side.
They work hard for the church. They live their faith. They build up their families and their parishes in the faith. These good folks deserve to keep the term “traditionalist” and to honor it with their good, strong, faithful and humble Catholicism.
We should separate the paranoid hate mongers from the rest of the traditionalists. They are not traditionalists. They are Protestant fundamentalists wearing traditionalist Catholic clothes.
I know about Protestant fundamentalism. I was raised and educated among Protestant fundamentalists. Among them were many good and sincere Christian people, but also among them, and driving their religion–was a certain type of religious person whose attitudes mirror exactly the Catholic fundamentalists on the rise today.
Here are ten principles things that connect them:
- Private Interpretation – Protestant fundamentalists rely on their own private selection and interpretation of the Scriptures. Their interpretation is always the right one. Catholic fundamentalists rely on their own selection and interpretation of church documents. Like the Protestant fundamentalists they know better than the Pope.
- Cafeteria Christianity – The Protestant fundamentalist picks and chooses which parts of the Bible he wants to adhere to. Catholic fundamentalists do the same. They pick which parts of Catholicism they consider “authentic” and ignore or denigrate the rest.
- Private Prophets – Protestant fundamentalists alway raise up their own preachers and prophets. Mini demagogues–they cultivate a celebrity status and promote them as infallible mini popes. Catholic fundamentalists fall down before their own prophets and preachers who they also raise to a status of authority that supersedes the bishops and even the Holy Father.
- Fortress Mentality – Protestant fundamentalism thrives on the fortress mentality. The little group gets together and builds walls and peers over them at al the “sinners” who are outside the enclave. Catholic fundamentalists practice the same ghetto mentality. “We few, we faithful few!” We are the Remnant of faithful ones who remain. Their response to this blog post, for instance, will be to retreat further into their self made holy fortress and throw stones over the parapet at me–no
- Invincible Self Righteousness – Protestant fundamentalists are totally convinced they are right. There is no argument or discussion. Catholic fundamentalists are the same. The have their proof texts. They have their watertight world view. No discussion. No dialogue. It’s their way or the highway. Their response to this blog post will prove my point, for the ones to whom I am referring will not engage my points, but dismiss me and my message.
- Anger and Violence Fundamentalism is always tinged with anger. There’s no sense of humor here. There’s no joy. There’s no laughter. Especially there is no sense of humor about themselves. Fundamentalists are angry and aggressive, and given enough rope they will move from verbal violence to physical violence. The Catholic fundamentalists who bother to read this far and react in anger to this blog post, for example, will prove my point and they will not even be able to see this themselves.
7. Fear and Loathing Protestant fundamentalists are fueled by fear and loathing. Catholic fundamentalists are the same. There is little light, joy, peace and confidence in their lives. Instead life is narrowed down by fear and loathing. Where there is fear there is darkness.
8. Suspicion and Separation Those who are outside the group are the sinners and suspect ones, but those who seem to be inside the group, but do not share the group think are suspected even more. The only ones who are worse than the sinners outside are the sinners inside the fortress. Therefore everyone inside must conform constantly, and anyone who steps outside the rules or exhibits the wrong attitude will soon be shunned, then excluded.
9. Conspiracy Theories – the atmosphere of suspicion and fear inevitably breeds conspiracy theories. The big, dark nefarious secret powers are always thought to be behind the scenes planning some sort of hostile attack on the select few of the faithful.
10. Persecution complex Fundamentalists do just about everything possible to make themselves obnoxious and unlikeable, then when people dislike them or get down on them they love to play the persecuted victim. It is almost as if they are not only looking for persecution, but are anticipating it with a sick kind of thrill.
Why take time to analyze these ten principles? Because what we see in the extreme religious behaviors of fundamentalists is not limited to Protestants or Catholics. It is actually the sick form of any religion. There are fundamentalist Muslims, fundamentalist Hindus, fundamentalist Jews, fundamentalist Mormons.
You name it. This is the form of religion that is a kind of anti-religion.
Furthermore, as we approach Holy Week, remember that it was this kind of religion which drove the Scribes and Pharisees who eventually scapegoated Jesus and made sure he was killed.
Finally, the analysis is not just a critique of fundamentalists. It should be a sober critique of all Christians because all of us, at one point or another, if we are not careful and prayerful, will fall into these traps to a greater or lesser extent. I know what I’m talking about because, on my worst days, I see that kind of Catholic looking back at me from the mirror.