Friday, March 22, 2013


I predict (clairvoyant that I am) that Pope Francis will do the following on Holy Thursday thus breaking a liturgical rubric, which by his actions and magisterium he will thus change, to make a greater point about his priesthood and what the ordained priest should model for other priests and for the laity!

Sometimes I find the Vortex shrill, but this video is very good. I think what he says can be applied not only to secularists but to Catholics who are falling into the secularist's mindset.

When Pope Paul VI died and Pope John Paul I was elected, the world fawned over the new pope who was dubbed "the smiling pope." I think Paul VI smiled too, but in his later years as he aged, he did seem depressed and dour and of course he was hated for Humanae Vitae and I suppose many people thought a smiling pope would throw condoms and birth control pills at the waiting laity as he was raised on his Sedia Gestatória like in a Mardi Gras parade.

Pope Benedict was an academic and a bureaucrat. Pope Francis is a pastor. He will approach the papacy as a pastor and model for the Church what a pastor should do. Pope Benedict was a professor and was excellent at showing forth the teaching Christ, which is a function of a pastor/bishop also. So in the broad sweep of history, we have various elements of the ministry of Christ reflected in the style and personality of the quite so human papacy. John Paul II was a philosopher and Globe trotter, an evangelist.

I think the "Church of the Media" really thinks that Pope Francis, the pope of the people, will not only throw condoms and birth control to his people, but also throw them same sex marriage. The Church of the Media are on a high now, but soon they will come down crashing and crashing on the new Holy Father.

And now let me step on some toes and what Pope Francis in my clairvoyant look to Holy Thursday will do at the Evening Mass of the Lord's Supper.

But first let us talk about the earlier Mass of Holy Thursday. Yes there are two principle celebrations that should take place on Holy Thursday, but in most dioceses do not! The first celebration is in the morning when the priests of the diocese gather with their bishop for the Chrism Mass. This Mass has two purposes. The first is the renewal of promises that the priest made at his ordination following the homily as the bishop questions them and the laity pray for their bishop and priests. Holy Thursday is the day that the priesthood is instituted by Jesus Christ! The Chrism Mass acknowledges that!

Then the bishop consecrates the Chrism that will be used for Holy Baptism (applied to all the people of God in Baptism and Confirmation as we are all priestly people in this regard but obviously the ministerial priesthood has a different function than the general priesthood from where they come). Chrism is also used to anoint the hands of the priest (and the head of the bishop) who uses the "laying on of hands" in five of the seven sacraments: Confirmation, Eucharist, Penance and Anointing of the Sick and Holy Orders. It doesn't get any more "ministerial priesthood" than that! And of course the priest will use the oil of catechumens and the Oil of the sick in his priestly ministry as well. Then of course the bishop and priests concelebrate the Liturgy of the Eucharist. Thus the purpose of the "ordained priestliness" of Holy Thursday is made abundantly clear in this Cathedral Liturgy. Unfortunately most dioceses don't do this Holy Thursday Liturgy on Holy Thursday so priests and laity don't associate it with the very purpose of Holy Thursday! Most think the Evening Mass of the Lord's Supper is the only Holy Thursday liturgy, which it is not! What a shame!

Then the priests symbolically bring the various oils back to their parishes as he prepares to celebrate the Evening Mass of the Lord's Supper with his parish. In many places the oils and Sacred Chrism are brought to the altar in the offertory procession and recognized. (We do it here at St. Joseph).

The source and summit of the priesthood of the laity and the ordained is the celebration of the Mass. But the Catholic priesthood, whose ministry is in continuity with the sacrificial priesthood of the Old Testament, is also in rupture with it and Jesus Christ himself on the night before His Passion, when he institutes the Catholic priesthood and Eucharist, shows forth both the continuity and rupture in the ministerial priesthood of the ordained.

The three synoptic Gospels make clear what the first priests (bishops) and all subsequent ordained bishops and priests, when Jesus institutes both the priesthood first and the Most Holy Eucharist as a sacrificial sign of the Passion of Good Friday and the Resurrection of Easter Sunday. This is high, temple priesthood and Jesus Christ is that Priest which the ordained share in.

But John's Gospel also shows us that this priesthood is not to be exclusively temple and separated from the laity as the Jewish priesthood is. John's Gospel does not have the "Last Supper" account, but it certainly presumes it and knows of it. Rather, since John's Gospel is the last to be placed in a written form, the Evangelist/editor chooses to focus on Jesus' washing the feet of the apostles.

What's going on here? Some would suggest He is ordaining them at this point to the "Order of Deacon." I don't know how kosher that would be in Catholic theology. More than likely, though, John's Gospel is showing forth the "rupture" part of the Christian ordained priesthood and Jesus models it! The Catholic priesthood is not concerned with the ritual purity of the Old Testament priesthood and Jesus does away with "ritual purity" as He does so throughout His ministry.

Jesus the High Priest is not afraid to get his hands and body "ritually impure" as the temple priests would. He models for the new priests their diaconate role of caring for the poor and getting "ritually impure" to do so. I would hesitate to call this an "ordination" as it is more a symbolic act by the High Priest Himself to show the apostles the profound nature of what they are to do as priests.

Now, in the Evening Mass of the Lord's Supper,(which keep in mind is the second Mass of Holy Thursday, not the only one!) the primary Sacraments that are celebrated and are not optional are that of the Priest who has renewed his promises earlier in the day with his bishop (most places unfortunately have the Chrism Mass on the wrong day thus confusing its purpose!) and the celebration of the Holy Eucharist. Priesthood and Eucharist both instituted by Christ are dramatically made clear and shown forth.

Then there is the optional sacramental, the washing of the feet. It doesn't have to be celebrated, it is optional but a wonderful ritual only done once a year and symbolic, purely symbolic and symbolic of the role of the ordained priest. It should never be that the laity wash everyone's feet too, this would be wrong, just as deacons and laity are not to renew any of their promises at the Chrism Mass (baptismal or otherwise, since for the laity their renewal takes place at the Easter Vigil and by way of extension on Easter Sunday!) The washing of the feet is a sign of the "rupture" part of his priesthood in terms of the Jewish priesthood and that Catholic priests are to get ritually impure to follow Jesus in His priesthood!

So technically, even though the rubric doesn't say so, women could be chosen to have their foot washed, but the laity shouldn't be washing the feet in the Holy Thursday Evening Mass of the Lord's Supper! It's not about ordaining those who have their feet washed, it is about the priest who washes feet! Thus the priesthood of the ordained is brilliantly shown forth in an optional sacramental!

The priest who washes feet in an optional sacramental is showing his congregation the nature of his priesthood. It is not just temple related but goes to the world in getting his hands dirty in ministry with the laity, what the temple priesthood would have seen as impure! Christ purifies!

So even though the rubrics for this optional sacramental say men should be chosen, remember it is a sacramental! Bishop Lessard asked me as MC of the Cathedral to only have six people, men or women. I asked why not twelve? He said that would make it appear that these are the 12 Apostles. They are not, this isn't a reenactment of Jesus ordaining anyone but calling His apostles to service and so Bishop Lessard washed the feet of men and women, boys and girls, as a sign of his priesthood including "ritually impure" acts.

Will Pope Francis do away with the rubric of men having their feet washed on Holy Thursday? My clairvoyance based upon Cardinal Bergoglio's past Holy Thursdays says yes, there will be boys and girls having their feet washed as a sign, not of their ministerial priesthood, for they are not ordained, but as a sign of the pope's ministerial priesthood and fidelity to what Jesus calls each bishop, priest and deacon to do, both the "ritually pure" and the "ritually impure" and to bring these togehter in the ordained priesthood!

Finally, no one is forced to have any men or any women or a mixed bag of men and women for the feet washing as parishes might dispense with it altogether. It is not central to the Holy Thursday's Evening Mass of the Lord's Supper. Some priests might want to focus on the priesthood connection with the washing of the feet, but keep in mind, no one is ordained when their feet are washed on Holy Thursday. That would be Biblical literalism and liturgical fundamentalism. The washing of the feet is not about that in the Liturgy! It is purely a sacramental and shows forth what the ordained priesthood is about in addition to the ritual aspect of the temple.


Gene said...

Sounds like you are clairvoyantly apologizing for the Pope ahead of time. If he does this, it is only going to encourage the media and the progressives. If he does so, I will (prayerfully) consider it PC BS.

Gabby said...

Re. the Mass of Chrism
Our diocese is too widespread to allow the priests to attend a Mass of Chrism on Holy Thursday morning and make it back to their parishes to celebrate the Mass of the Lord's Supper in the evening. Usually the bishop schedules diocesan meetings the week before Holy Week and celebrates the Mass of Chrism at the end of the meetings -- it was celebrated two days ago. Sadly, I've knows some priests refuse to attend it.

About 7 years ago I decided I would experience my first Mass of Chrism so got my plane ticket and booked my hotel room. Our pastor chose not to go. Imagine my surprise when the Bishop, recognizing me, announced that I would be bringing back the Holy Oils for the 4 parishes for whom I was secretary. Luckily for me, the person doing the security check at the airport the next day had been at Mass the night before and knew what all those little bottles were. (Is my diocese the only one so stingy with the oils, giving each parish only 2 ounces of each?)

The next year the Pastor chose to send me in his stead. I honestly wondered if it was because he didn't want to pledge obedience to the Bishop, his best friend since their seminary days, whom he defied at every turn, sometimes to his face in my presence.

For about 10 years we did present the Oils to the parish at the Mass of the Lord's Supper, but in the past 2 the priest refused to do that. Don't know what will happen this year with our new Pastor.

Re. foot washing
For more than a decade there was 'hand washing' in our parish because some people had become upset with only the Knights having their feet washed. They saw it as elitism. ???

Then around 10 years ago we went back to washing feet. At first we included women simply because men didn't want to volunteer -- and in Canada the CCCB says that a cross section of parishioners should be used. Eventually the men started to 'get it' and in the past 5 years or so it has been only men in accordance with the rubrics. This year we have a new Pastor and he wanted to have anyone who wanted their feet washed come up, in a very disorganized fashion. Someone talked him out of that, explaining that it had been very organized, almost choreographed, in recent years and that people had signed up for it in advance. He agreed to that but still insisted on children and women. So far, except for one little girl whose dad is having his washed, only men have signed up.

Gene said...

Hey, Father, if the Pope washes women's feet does that mean you are Claire-voyant? LOL!

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

I am "Clara-voyant!" I want to reiterate that I think the Holy Father has the right, if he so chooses, to change a rubric of the Liturgy, but he should explain why, not only with actions but with an explanation, which I believe his homily will do. He may, for I'm not totally Claro-voyant, only wash the feet of boys.
In our parish for the past five or six years, we only wash the feet of men and they must wear suit and tie. In South America and other places in Europe and even here, being a lay person active in the Church and going to Mass seems to be a "womanly" thing and not manly, especially in South America. For men to be chosen for Holy Thursday is quite powerful to our men and their sons for all they see is women doing everything in the parish except being a priest. Women dominate parish life and in some places dominate Mass attendance!

Anonymous said...

Pope Francis should not wash the feet of women. He is a servant of the liturgy not the other way around. He is quickly losing me, no, that happened when he emerged on the loggia.

David in T.O.

Gene said...

Certainly, the Pope has the right to change a rubric. It is merely my opinion that it would be bad judgement and would send mixed signals.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

I think in terms of a pope losing our vote as though he is some kind of politician plays right into the hands of the secularism that has occurred in our Church and toward our members, both clergy and laity and it is the flip side of the progressives when Ratizinger appeared on the Loggia, or even prior when his name was announced. So traditionalists really are like the progressives in this, aren't they!

rcg said...

You are right about the attitudes of men in Latin America toward attending Mass. I was always amazed to find so many sitting outside afterwards, waiting on their families. I have seen this in Ireland, as well. It would be good for the Holy Father to show manliness in his expressions and respect toward women. My concern is that the incomplete healing of the rupture has the vast majority of Catholics still thinking they are at the centre of the Mass and that this affirms that attitude.

rcg said...

David, I would beg you to reconsider. Many Protestants ask me why we worship the Pope, Mary, etc. We, of course, worship God. I attend Mass in some distressing parishes with the understanding that Christ will be present at the determined moment, no matter how stupidly the priest may be dressed or rant in his homily. I have confidence that the Holy Spirit will guide or goad this Pope for our benefit.

Vox Cantoris said...

Father W. Faber, Cong. Orat., contemporary of Bl. John Henry Newman, founder of the London Oratory and prolific hymn writer (Faith of Our Fathers, and many more) said, "all change is bad from its very nature. It is full of evil; it unsettles and disturbs; it is full of the world; it is the very spirit of the world; and nothing worse can be said of it."

When did we as Catholics become so clericalist? Do we not have a hopefully well-formed conscience? Can we not honestly ask question without being accused of being of the right or left?

We have had enough chaos thank you very much. We don't need women's feet washed by the Pope so that the priest in a parish who has resisted the pressure for years in service of the liturgy can be now mocked, "see the Pope did it in Buenos Aires!"

He is the Pope. I recognise that; but I have a right to think and question his decisions that are not in the realm of faith and morals.

Take the red shoes as an example; look at what it caused with Cardinal Mahony, his vitriol and that of those who held him to account. Was this good? Would it have happened if he just put on the red shoes?

Look, what is happening here is a repudiation of Benedict XVI and his actions of the Reform of the Reform by the many; and I will have no part of it.

Holy Father Francis has an obligation not to create scandal in these matters; he has an obligation, not to "unsettle."

Preach our need to be charitable, to work with the poor, end human trafficking, abortion but don't stand up in front of 5000 journalists and deny who you are or who we are in the name of "respect for your conscience."

That is sycretism and a false ecumenism and if it is coming from the top, we have big problems.

And we should be able to question some of the actions and words of Holy Father Francis in charity and truth without being labelled.

David in T.O.

Hammer of Fascists said...

I must agree with David.

Can anyone point out to me any other period in Church history when so many significant changes happened so quickly? Upheaval in Liturgy, loss of distinctive Catholic identity (ranging from practical suppression of little t traditions to a near evaporation of centuries of pre-VII theology), the mass of bishops greeting epidemics of scandal and modernist heresy with indifference or acceptance, the disappearance of Latin, a precipitous drop in vocations, a disastrous drop in Mass attendance . . . I could go on.

One of the features of society since the onset of the Industrial Revolution is change and more change, driven mainly by rapid technological advancement but reaching into every aspect of society. In recent decades the Church has become infected by this idea. Get a new computer every couple of years, get a new car every few years, get a new papal magisterium every several years. The only constant is the law of change.

Really, after all that has happened in our lifetimes, can anyone seriously argue that still more change is a good thing? Aren't we on the verge of turning change into an idol, a false god?

To be continued

Hammer of Fascists said...

As to David on questioning/criticism:

I have long warned on this blog that, if taken too far, questioning papal, episcopal, or ecumenical (VII) authority may put us in the role of Luther and his worship of reason and Scripture. But David is right. The Holy Spirit has permitted the election of such popes as Leo X, Julius II, and the Borgia pope, Alexander VI. I don't intend to imply that Pope Francis is on their level, and in fact I presume that he isn't. But the very fact that such men as these three could come to the papacy shows the danger in being an uncritical apologist for everything that a pope says and does. I don't think that one must go that far in order to avoid the Lutheran heresy.

ytc said...

So feet washing is going to be divorced from its Apostolic origin! GREAT!

Unknown said...

While the Holy Father CAN change a rubric (vis-a-vis the washing of women's feet), he cannot do it arbitrarily or spontaneously. I think that is a real fear among some. If the Holy Father starts abusing the Mass (as John Paul II did), it will set back the tones of the liturgical renewal by years.

I spoke about this over at my blog,A Traditional Catholic in Iowa (sorry about the cheap pop, Father), regarding the liturgical action and Pauperism v. noble simplicity. Just as with every other priest, the Mass that the Holy Father celebrates is his Mass, insofar as he is the one who celebrates it and we are the one's who assist (through right worship), but it is NOT his Mass insofar as he can simply arbitrate or legislate on the fly (as you point out). It will be perceived and I think rightly so, that if the Holy Father makes a change with regard to vir, as opposed to mulier, then we will have a serious problem. A change of that magnitude is not an arbitrary decision to be made, as is no change to the Mass. This doesn't even bring into account the prudence of including the Maundatum in the Mass, to begin with, which is is purely optional and I believe should be left out of the Mass, to begin with...but that is for another post.

Templar said...

I'm not clairvoyant, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express once, so I know the following:

On March 21, 2013, theVatican issued the following notice: "On Holy Thursday, 28 March, the Holy Father Francis will celebrate the Chrism Mass in St. Peter's Basilica in the morning and then, at 5:30pm in the afternoon, will go to celebrate the Mass of the Lord's Supper at the Casal del Marmo youth detention center instead of the Basilica of St. John Lateran, where it had been traditionally held in past years."

Which tells me the Bishop of Rome will be washing the feet of children. Boys? Girls? 12? 10? Who knows, but if I was a betting man I'll go with 12 boys.

Templar said...

Anon 5: What was V2 itself but a Lutheran heresy? I don't say that to be provacative, I ask it honestly. Did it not open up the Church to "reformation"? Was that not it's stated goal? Did the Church prioer to V2 have it's issues? Sure, but repudiation of 1930+ years of Tradition was not the way to address them. The longer I live and the more I examine what V2 was/is/and did the more I am convinced that only a repudiation of that Council will repair the damage that it caused, and "reform of reform" is still just "reformation". The Council of Trent fought a "Counter-Reformation" and V2 just capitulated and addopted "Reformation". The new Bishop of Rome may end up being exactly what The Church needs, but not for any of the reasons the media is currently reporting

Gene said...

Even the fact that in most Churches where I attend Mass there are women and girls running around all over the Tabernacle and Chapels being altar girls, lectors, EMHC's, Sacristans, and what have you is annoying. The Mass and liturgy have become degraded enough without more nonsense.

Hammer of Fascists said...


First, as to terminology. The proper terms as applied to the 16th century aren't Reformation and Counter-Reformation. I doubt that even Luther himself would have argued that he was changing the _form_ of Christianity but its _substance_ (i.e., returning to "real" Christianity by throwing out the substance of Catholic "errors"). Trent, on the other hand, was the focal point of a _true_ reformation aimed at correcting abuses and clarifying/elaborating upon the existing substance of Catholic teaching without changing that substance. It wasn't a "counter" to what wasn't a Protestant "Reformation."

That being said: I have long referred to VII as an anti-Trent, in the sense that Trent found a chaotic liturgy, clerical abuses, and bad catechesis (especially among clergy) throughout Europe and took very effective steps to clean all that up, while VII took a standardized liturgy, well-trained clergy, and relatively well-catechized laity/clergy and threw them all into chaos. If Pope Francis does arbitrary things with the Masses he celebrates (as did JPII and Benedict), then the chaos continues in high-profile fashion.

While I have serious concerns that the hierarchy continues to avoid telling us how to square VII pronouncements on religious freedom, ecumenism, subsistence, and collegiality with prior doctrinal statements, I'm not prepared to denounce the council as heretical on that basis (or the basis of the spirit of VII either, which is where most of the repudiation you mention originated). I think that the hierarchy's continued obstinate refusal to tell us _how_ to reconcile VII to prior councils and magisterial statements contributes to scandal and greatly weakens the Church, but my hope is that at some point (probably not soon) the hierarchy will address this problem. Maybe it _will_ be an authoritative repudiation of VII of the sort you describe, effectively labeling it heresy as you suggest. Perhaps it will declare VII to be nothing more than pastoral. Perhaps it will be a reasoned explanation of the problem areas that does in fact square those pronouncements with prior doctrinal statements.

My own approach is to continue to abide by all prior teachings of the Church (as many of the Faithful have done in earlier dark periods of Catholic history), while squaring VII with those teachings as far as I'm able. Where I'm unable to do that, I treat VII as pastoral only (and furthermore a pastoral approach I personally find useless). I do this in the expectation that if the Church truly is the Church, then at some point she not only will, but must, remedy the problems of VII in one of the ways I mention above, or in some other way. But the ongoing epidemic of modernist behavior by popes and bishops as well as laity tells me that this correction isn't likely to come soon, and that the Church will take further enormous damage before the problem is corrected.

Gene said...

I believe Anon 5 speaks for many of us.

Unknown said...

@ Anon5;

Well said.

Anonymous said...

“To live is to change, and to be perfect is to have changed often.”
- Bl. John Henry Newman

"If you want to make enemies, try to change something."
- Woodrow Wilson

Anonymous said...

"My own approach is to continue to abide by all prior teachings of the Church (as many of the Faithful have done in earlier dark periods of Catholic history), while squaring VII with those teachings as far as I'm able. Where I'm unable to do that, I treat VII as pastoral only (and furthermore a pastoral approach I personally find useless)."

Can you spell C-A-F-E-T-E-R-I-A ?

Marc said...

And yet, Anonymous, if Anon 5 or anyone else wavered from that view as recently as 60 years ago, he would have been considered a heretic.

Today's faithful Catholic is yesterday's heretic. Today's "cafeteria" Catholic (according to your usage) is yesterday's faithful Catholic.

Curious, isn't it?

Gene said...

Anonymous, Since Vat II was a pastoral council only, abiding by the Catholicism that went before it is not cafeteria. It is haute cuisine.

Hammer of Fascists said...

Mr. Anonymous,

I will excuse your cafeteria slur on me (which I find patently offensive) given that you seem to be ignorant of all of my prior posts on this blog. The fact is VII made several statements that on their face are irreconcilable with previously-stated Catholic doctrine. According to the Law of the Excluded Middle, I cannot simultaneously follow these four teachings _and_ the earlier doctrines (and keep in mind that the Church simply can't repeal doctrinal truth--we're not talking about legislation here). In the absence of authoritative guidance from the Church on how to do this (which the Church seems very reticent to give), I apply the teachings that are clearly doctrinal, i.e. the pre-VII statements, as opposed to what may be pastoral (and are apparently irreconcilable) VII statements. If you choose to consider that cafeteria Catholicism, then that's your problem.

If you want to try reconciling these matters with doctrine, I refer you to my invitation to reconcile these teachings as I've laid out in this blog post: So far nobody has risen to the challenge. Maybe you'd like to try your hand? Or do you limit yourself to hurling insults and cut-and-pasting out-of-context quotations?

Your Obedient Servant,


Anonymous 2 said...

Anon 5:

I agree that Anonymous would benefit from reading your earlier posts. Regarding the possibility of reconciling the Vatican II documents with earlier Church documents regarding the four matters that especially trouble you, however, you might want to take another look at our exchange in the September 9, 2012 thread on “Vatican II When It Celebrated Its 40th Anniversary 10 Years Ago.”

While we were unable to reach any definite conclusions, we seemed to agree that plausible arguments for reconciling the documents on the matters we discussed there could in fact be made. That said, of course, and speaking for myself at least, I continue to insist that, despite my own illustrative attempt to offer some arguments reconciling those particular documents, the laity is quite unqualified to offer or evaluate such arguments (or counter arguments such as those you yourself made) in any authoritatively definitive way. The exegetical challenge involved is, I believe, one that is more appropriately addressed by those within the Magisterium who are properly trained in the relevant type of reasoning.

In the same thread I also speculated regarding possible reasons why the Magisterium has not been clearer and more specific in offering such reconciliations.

I mention all this simply so that readers like Anonymous will have a broader perspective on this issue.

Gene said...

I would dearly love to see this Anon (or anyone else) seriously take on Anon 5 in such a debate. LOL! Talk about bringing a knife to a gun fight...LOL!

Anonymous said...

Anon 5 - You pick and choose what you will/will not accept of the Church's teaching. That is, offensive to you or not, Cafeteria Catholicism.

Your rationale: You find several statements of Vatican II "irreconcilable" with previous teaching. By doing so you propose yourself as the definer of our Church's doctrine. Unless and until you are given the grace of episcopal ordination, you are not competent to fulfill that role.

Vatican II is authoritative. Your expectation that someone will hold your hand, use small words, and make every jot and tittle clear to you is unreasonable. And, I suspect, it is also an impossible task since you have already made up your mind.

I limit myself to the Church's teaching up to and including Vatican II which is, despite protestations to the contrary and despite your own, personal misgivings, part of the Tradition of Faith of our Church.

As Anon 2 wisely points out, none of us is qualified to determine what is or is not the Church's doctrine. We are qualified, by grace, to submit to that teaching even if we find it difficult, demanding, idealistic, or even 'irreconcilable' with our understanding.

Gene said...

Methinks Ignotus is a new Anonymous. Hey, he's hot for Anon 2, as well. LOL!

Anonymous 2 said...

Gene, You’re a real trip. If you did not exist, we would have to invent you. =)

Gene said...

Well, if this guy is not Ignotus, we now have progressivist counterpoint to the melody of unbelief...
A secular symphony...

Anonymous said...

Imagine the utter disarray the Church would be in if, after Nicea, some said, "I don't know how this Hommousios fits with prior faith;" if after Ephesus, some maintained "I can't reconcile calling Mary "Theotokos;" if after Vatican I some recoiled in horror, rejecting the infallibility of the Holy Father.

Wait, we don't have to imagine this - it happened. Those who rejected the teachings of the Church left, departed, vamoosed. They stepped away from the Church and the fullness of faith found therein to establish their own branches of Christianity.

The unity of the Church is NOT found in one person's assent of faith. The unity of the Church is founded on the unity of the Trinity as found in the unbroken Apostolic charism to teach, without error, the Faith that comes from God.

Anonymous 2 said...


What is progressivist, unbelieving, or secular about: suggesting that the four controversial V2 documents may in fact be reconcilable with earlier Church documents and thus not represent a rupture in Tradition; seeking to demonstrate, as I tried to do illustratively for the sake of argument, how certain of those documents might indeed be reconcilable; or maintaining that laity such as myself or Anon 5 are unqualified to engage in any authoritatively definitive exegisis? Or with Anonymous, whoever he or she is, agreeing with any of those points? (Or have I misunderstood the thrust of your comment?)

I will be interested to hear Anon 5’s response to my post above on our earlier exchange of September 9, 2012.

Gene said...

Uh, Anon, Vat II was a P_A_S_T_O_R_A_L Council. No dogma or doctrine came from it. Nothing infallible issued from it. Comparing it to Trent or Nicea is just...well...stupid.

Gene said...

Anon 2, I am looking more at the overall picture that is painted by Ignotus and Anon by their comments and reactions on the blog. You know the old saw about, "if it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck...."

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Gene, Vatican II reiterates many, many doctrines and dogmas of the Catholic Church and it give a road map to bishop, other clergy and the laity for the pilgrimage. We can't dismiss that and it is not allowed to be dismissed as a council is the highest form of formal teaching we have even in pastoral theology.

Gene said...

Yes, Fr., but it still is a far different event than Nicea or Trent. We cannot dismiss the Council, but we should dismiss what has come of it...