Friday, February 2, 2018


But the question remains, are these the faithful who have gathered or tourists?

I would suggest this is the way of the future if the "spirit" of Vatican II continues to rear its ugly head once again, as in the 1970's, not only will papal crowds decrease but also Mass attendance to about 5% of Catholics and less.


TJM said...

5% Mass attendance has already occurred in Germany where the left-wing loons in the Church there keep pushing their left-wing agenda, with the same miserable results.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Also, if the 5% were traditional and orthodox at least they could be a level for an eventual restoration. But if the 5% are progressive and thus ambivalent not so much.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...


rcg said...

Very good question. It shows the main gripe traditional minded people have with the NO atmosphere: tlit ain’t about the priest, bishop, or pope. It may be that Pope Francis has spent his ammo and is no longer interesting. It may be that he now knows that he is, indeed, expected to make judgements, as he discovered in Chili. He has moments of orthodoxy but they come across as superficial or gratuitous. The man is exhausted of interesting and new things. I hope he is enlightened to this and moves to focus all attention on Christ as a forgiving judge. But a judge nonetheless.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

What Pope Benedict lacked in personality he made up with papal pizazz thus making his pontificate based on the splendor of the papacy, and it’s institutions to include trappings and protocols. Francis has stripped the papacy of its splendor and perhaps truths. He reminds me of South American leaders who never dress up!

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Of course, Francis want a poor church for the poor, thus his see through ill fitting cassock and drab vestments.
However in the south you will find extremely poor black Protestant churches whose members dress to the nines and a pastor with diamonds and gold and fancy cars, all a sign of the streets of gold of heaven!

TJM said...

Fr. McDonald,

The problem with Francis and his ilk is that they fail to recognize that without wealth creation there would be even more poor people. Capitalism has lifted hundreds of millions out of poverty in stark contrast to socialism, e.g. Cuba, Venezuela, etc. Moreover, in the US, being "poor" under government standards is somewhat misleading. Years ago in the Chicago Tribune a "journalist" wrote a story on a poor person's horrible plight. Well the journalist made the mistake of using a photograph of the poor person. The person looked extremely well fed and was standing in front of a flat screened TV in their apartment with an air conditioner in the window. I burst out laughing.

rcg said...

Dang iPhone : Chile. 🙄

Carol H. said...

rcg, I kinda liked the picture I got in my head of the Pope making "judgements in Chili." LOL!

ByzRC said...

rcg said:

"The man is exhausted of interesting and new things."

If he is, and we can only hope that's the case, many will be greatly relieved.

rcg said...

He does get hot headed.

ByzRC said...

I don't agree that Benedict was totally lacking in personality. To me, he always came off as a sincere, kind, charming and gentle soul. Probably, he wasn't embraced in the same way as Francis because he told people what they didn't want to hear - the truth! Francis resonates with those who largely have no involvement with the life of the church. As for the people in the pews, it doesn't seem as much for the reasons we've gone over many times before (so, Anonymous/Father/Proofreader, please expect to be ignored if you provide 'corrections' and, demands for sources again). So, it seems reasonable that his audiences are perhaps becoming less attended by locals and more attended by tourists. As for the aesthetics, people don't need to go all the way to the Vatican to see bland and drab - they can likely and easily find it at home. Personally, Francis' version of bland and drab depresses me. Even Orthodox Christian monks who otherwise live a very meager existence give their all to the liturgy - nothing is spared! Hopefully, the next papacy recognizes this. Last, as for the poor, I agree with TJM, without some degree of wealth supporting Catholic Charities etc. the poor would be much worse off.

Stet said...

"The life of the Church."

"Throughout his public life, Pope Francis has been noted for his humility, emphasis on God's mercy, concern for the poor and commitment to interfaith dialogue." That is the life of the Church.

"In addition, due to both his Jesuit and Ignatian aesthetic, he is known for favoring simpler vestments void of ornamentation, including refusing the traditional papal mozzetta cape upon his election, choosing silver instead of gold for his piscatory ring, and keeping the same pectoral cross he had as cardinal." That is the life of the Church.

"Early in his time as Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Bergoglio sold off the archdiocese's shares in multiple banks and turned its accounts into those of a normal customer in international banks. The shares in banks had led the local church to a high leniency towards high spending, and the archdiocese was nearing bankruptcy as a result. As a normal customer of the bank, the church was forced into a higher fiscal discipline." That is the life of the Church.

"He lived in a small apartment, rather than in the elegant bishop's residence in the suburb of Olivos. He took public transportation and cooked his own meals. He limited his time in Rome to "lightning visits". He was known to be devoted to St. Therese of Lisieux, and he enclosed a small picture of her in the letters he wrote, calling her "a great missionary saint". That is the life of the Church.

"In a controversial initiative spearheaded by Pope Francis last year, three showers were constructed for the homeless inside a nondescript lavatory block beside the colonnade designed by Gian Lorenzo Bernini in the late 17th century. The initiative was followed by an offer of free haircuts from volunteer barbers, all part of the Pope’s drive to help the poor since he took up the papacy two years ago." That is the life of the Church.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Stet, these are the life of the Church, secular aid agencies and many good people of all faiths and no faiths.

What the pope should not be is polarizing of his cardinals, bishops, priests and rank and file laity. His Holiness should be a Catholic Pontiff in uniting those in full communion with him and not creating schism, which should not be the life of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.

johnnyc said...

Hey Stet.....good example of how liberals view Jesus as a social worker and the Catholic Church as only good for social services. Those things anybody can do. Yes it is part of the life of the Church and the Church has been fulfilling that mission long before Pope Francis came on the scene. But the key mission given to the Catholic Church by Christ is the salvation of souls. The identification and condemnation of sin is necessary in carrying out that mission.

Stet said...

Sometimes there is little discernable different between the way the Church, secular aid agencies, and many good people of all faiths and no faith live a good and holy life, even a Christ-like life.

"Do you think that I have come to establish peace on the earth? No, I tell you, but rather division. From now on a household of five will be divided, three against two and two against three; a father will be divided against his son and a son against his father, a mother against her daughter and a daughter against her mother, a mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.”

We Christians show concern for the poor because we are commanded to do so by the Lord.

We Christians choose asceticism not because the world and things of the world are evil, but because they can easily stand between us and true service to God and others.

We Christians do not seek perks and entitlements, expecting them simply because we are Christians or belong to the dominant religious organization.

We Christians do not adopt the rich trappings of this world, knowing that power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Unless one is a stage actor, one cannot put on the robes and regalia of an earthly prince, accept the adulation and deference given to an earthly prince, wield power like an earthly prince, and not come to think of himself/herself as an earthly prince.

The Amish shun these things and forgive the murderer of their daughters almost instantly. Which practice seems to open one more effectively to the grace of God?

Mark Thomas said...

Father McDonald said..."What Pope Benedict lacked in personality he made up with papal pizazz thus making his pontificate based on the splendor of the papacy, and it’s institutions to include trappings and protocols. Francis has stripped the papacy of its splendor and perhaps truths."

Pope Benedict XVI, time and again, reiterated the teachings and practices that Pope Francis promotes. Controversies and gaffes abounded throughout Pope Benedict XVI's reign that resulted from his lack of strong managerial and communicative skills.

Beyond that, controversies plagued his Pontificate via the manner in which he was misrepresented by news media outlets.

Via books that he authored, his personal opinions were presented as Church teachings. That, in turn, forced the Vatican to clarify his statements.


Pope Benedict says that condoms can be used to stop the spread of HIV

Comments in interview signal break with Vatican's blanket ban on the use of contraceptives

"In a break with his traditional teaching, Pope Benedict XVI has said the use of condoms is acceptable "in certain cases", in an extended interview to be published this week.

"The comments were made in a book-length interview with a German journalist, Peter Seewald."


Vatican Clarifies Pope Benedict's Remarks on Condoms


Pope's book on Jesus challenges Christmas traditions

Pontiff busts myths in book Jesus of Nazareth: The Infancy Narratives'
He says: 'In the gospels there is no mention of animals - it's an invention'
And angels never even sang to the shepherds when Christ was born!

Killjoy Pope crushes Christmas nativity traditions: New Jesus book reveals there were no donkeys beside crib, no lowing oxen and definitely no carols

There was the major controversy in regard to comments about Islam.

Beyond the above, Pope Benedict XVI praised Martin Luther, promoted the dead-in-the-water Ecumenical Movement, prayed in a synagogue and mosque. Prayed and worshipped in a Lutheran Church. Promoted "interreligious dialogue."

He banished the traditional Good Friday prayer for Jews, which he declared had "wounded" the Jewish people.

He authorized Assisi III, which included a voodoo witchdoctor who chanted a prayer to a strange god.

Despite the "splendor" of his Pontificate, the collapse of the (Latin) Church continued throughout his reign.

Sorry, but I have not found that Pope Francis' Pontificate has differed greatly from Pope Benedict XVI's Pontificate.


Mark Thomas

TJM said...

Fr. McDonald,

Amen. I recall my favorite pastor: charming, warm, and very Catholic. From his sermons I could not tell his politics at all. He just preached the Gospel and was much admired from parishioners from all all sides of the political spectrum. Our current pastor, is a Democratic Operative masquerading as a Catholic priest.

TJM said...


Then you are truly delusional. Benedict was an intellect and created NO confusion (only to those who didn't appreciuate his orthodoxy). Francis is an intellectual lightweight, a really nasty piece of work who pushes on all of the issues near and dear to the looney, political left. Sad that you are devoid of intellectual honesty.

Anonymous said...

You could not tell his politics at all, eh...?

Yes, that "liberal lunacy" of immigration...

"Recently Pope Benedict XVI greeted one such group: “I would begin by praising your unremitting efforts, in the best traditions of the church in America, to respond to the ongoing phenomenon of immigration in your country.” He also complemented the bishops for advocating for “the just treatment and the defense of the human dignity of immigrants.” He had already expressed his support for bishops' efforts supporting comprehensive immigration reform. While acknowledging that it is a complex and difficult issue still, in Catholic teaching, nations do have the right to regulate their borders. (To members of the Province of Chicago on ad limina visit to the Holy See)

And that "liberal lunacy" of climate change/global warming:

Letter of His Holiness Benedict XVI to the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople on the Occasion of the Seventh Symposium of the Religion, Science and the Environment Movement:
”Preservation of the environment, promotion of sustainable development and particular attention to climate change are matters of grave concern for the entire human family. No nation or business sector can ignore the ethical implications present in all economic and social development. With increasing clarity scientific research demonstrates that the impact of human actions in any one place or region can have worldwide effects. The consequences of disregard for the environment cannot be limited to an immediate area or populus because they always harm human coexistence, and thus betray human dignity and violate the rights of citizens who desire to live in a safe environment.”

Yep, that Pope Benedict XVI was one of the loonier liberals to occupy the See of St. Peter.....