Thursday, August 11, 2016
CATHOLIC PROGRESSIVISM IS MORE POLARIZING AND DEMORALIZING THAN CATHOLIC CONSERVATISM/TRADITIONALISM
The papacy of Pope Benedict, while marked by some controvesy and the antipathy of the liberal media against him, was appreciated by most rank and file Catholics. What was most appreciated was the recovery of things Catholic, our Catholic culture and that we didn't have to be ashamed of our pre-Vatican II heritage as though that aspect of the Church was the cause of all the ills that afflicted the Church and world.
Catholics were proud to be Catholic again, to have the traditional liturgy again and hopeful that the reform of the Mass would be in continuity with the 1962 Roman Missal graciously returned to the Church by Pope Benedict.
What Pope Benedict modeled but did not mandate was a recovery of the small "t" traditions of the Mass in terms of priestly vestment, kneeling for Holy Communion and ad orientem.
A small minority of 1960's type Catholics, especially bishops and cardinals and the theologians that informed them where aghast at this restoration of Catholic small "t" customs and heritage. They were aghast that the Church was becoming a culture warrior rather than acquiescing to the ways of the secular world and its "magisterium."
Today we have a return with a vengeance, that God willing will be short lived, of the malaise of progressivism that afflicted the Church prior to Pope St. John Paul II, in the immediate aftermath and drunken euphoria of the tower of Babel mentality that entered the cracks of the Church, what Pope Paul VI described as the "smoke of Satan."
It's as though the Church has returned to the depressed spirit of the USA during the short tenure of President Jimmy Carter--all doom and gloom and no real excitement or patriotism. That changed with President Ronald Regan who recovered in the presidency the dignity it once had and Jimmy Carter in his south Georgia folksy way had abandoned.
Some three years of Catholic progressivism, there seems to be a spirit of doom and gloom and those who are most engaged in the life of the Church and take her orthodox teachings seriously are in the grips of despair. Others who could care less about orthodoxy, and they are a small group, are joyful in a kind of sadistic sort of way.
Who will be the next President Regan, or should I say Pope John Paul Benedict the First of the Catholic Church? Time will tell. Will the excitement and enthusiasm for things Catholic with a small "t" or big "T" tradition return as it had up until three years ago? Time will tell or at least eternity will!