Many Catholics, especially post-Catholic progressives, usually my age and older, are bloviating over what clericalism is and trying to rid the priesthood of it.
I contend, though, that many of the recommendations of progressives miss the mark and simply try to make the priest another layperson. It is the old problem that Pope Saint John Paul try to put to rest, the laicization of the priesthood and the clericalization of the laity. Most of what progressives suggest is nostalgia for the time before Pope St. John Paul but in the last few years of Pope St. Paul VI.
Clericalism in my view is most evident among progressive priests who dogmatically instill a version of the “spirit” of Vatican II on their people. They manipulate the Mass by ad libbing or doing things that are against the rubrics or even common sense. In other words they think they are above the law, not only canon law, liturgical law but also civil law.
For example progressive Catholics, usually my age and older, will do some sort of civil disobedience in our diocese either at Kings Bay, a nuclear submarine facility or at Fort Benning in Columbus. When they get arrested for damaging property, they cry crocodile tears if the book is tossed at them and they get a prison sentence. That’s clericalism, my friends.
Conservative clericalism does the same thing. It doesn’t respect canon law or diocesan regulations when it comes to pastoral councils, finance councils and respect for financial accountability as well as accountability when it comes to time away from the parish, extravagant vacations overseas and regularly and going beyond what is allowed for these things in terms of budgets.
But with that said, a progressive aging retired priest of Washington, DC, Father Peter Daley has an article in the National Chismatic Reporter on how to deal with clericalism.
This is an excerpt:
My comment: I agree with some in the list above, but not with all when it reduces the legitimate authority of the priest by virtue of his ordination. Obviously legitimate authoirty can be abused, that's called sin, actual sin, which has two types, mortal and venial.
Instead of beating around the bush, why don't we talk about sin, mortal and venial as it concerns the abuse of what priests and bishops are called to do?????????????????????????