Sunday, February 25, 2018


When the Protestant Episcopal Church was in upheaval in the 1970's to this day over women's ordination and the dumbing down of their doctrines and morality, there were plenty of divisions happening. But most Episcopalians, like most Protestants, could care less about the big picture as long as they were happy in their own congregation. And of course Protestant tradition is to split if you are in disagreement with your pastor, bishop, or elder or other members. So nothing new here.

Catholics on the other hand, tended to appreciate universal unity in faith, morals, liturgy and spirituality of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. Usually only devotional life was inculturated in pre-Vatican II times but not the Sacraments and certainly not the Mass.

It seem, though, that Pope Francis is implementing the old, very old, 1970's canard of different synods of bishops in different countries making up their own rules and regulations on just about everything including who can receive Holy Communion and what constitutes a mortal sin and this also has ramifications for the sacraments and the Mass.

But if Catholics are happy in their own congregation and now are encouraged to be congregationalists by the pope himself, should they give a hoot about the big picture or just be protestant?


TJM said...

I seriously doubt the Novus Ordo Church has any staying power. It appears to be on the verge of collapse in the US. The real religious vitality appears to be found in the EF congregations where at great personal expense these folks support their belief system. On the whole, they are comprised of large, young, families. I believe Pope Benedict once said that the Church would shrink to a core of true believers - I suspect he may have been thinking of the EF congregations.

rcg said...

I pretty much agree with TJM except that it is surprising how tenacious bad ideas can be. A feature of protestant churches where I was raised was the desire to interpret the Bible. This led to some pretty absurd explanations of Biblical passages and often multiple explanations for the same passage. Revelations was a favorite.

Conversely, I had the idea that the universal, one Holy Catholic Church allowed for multiple solutions but to the same goals and standards. Sodomy and adultery were not cultural proclivities. Millions of Catholics have been misled into thinking divorce, artificial birth control, and sodomy are personal dialogues. They listened to the wrong people and are now stuck wondering how to get back. Pope Francis is trying to help, but he is also being a little reckless and not a little slow-witted going about it. As a result he risks the orthodox faithful and perhaps unwittingly mocks their fealty.

Anonymous said...

"Revelation" not Revelations.

Henry said...

I'm running into more and more regular pew Catholics who are concerned about the direction Francis appears to be taking. People who don't be following au courant web sites, not sophisticated enough to even know that it's improper for a Pope to impose a personal agenda on the Church, or take a personal doctrinal stand publicly. EWTN and the N C Register are exposing this to a lot of folks not likely to hear it otherwise, and secular media are beginning to cover it a bit.

Henry said...

TMJ: “I seriously doubt the Novus Ordo Church has any staying power. It appears to be on the verge of collapse in the US.”

This is more true of rust belt regions than areas like mine, where Catholic churches and schools are being built to keep up with the expanding Catholic population and SRO Masses. I might mention Knoxville’s quite traditional new cathedral to be dedicated this Saturday (March 3):

Newspaper article with photos

Exterior view

Interior photo

Closeup of dome

The Mass of Dedication for the Cathedral of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus will air live on the Diocese of Knoxville website and the DioKnox TV Youtube Channel beginning with the presentation of the Cultural Ensemble on Saturday, March 3 at 10:30 a.m. The Mass and Rite of Dedication, with Bishop Richard F. Stika as the Principal Celebrant, will begin at noon. Dr. Jerry Punch of ESPN and ABC-TV and Father Randy Stice, who currently serves as the associate director of the Secretariat of Divine Worship for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, will host the broadcast. The broadcast will include cameras located at five positions inside the new cathedral. A week after the dedication, EWTN, the global Catholic television network, will air the entire Mass again, on March 10, at 10 a.m.

The Egyptian said...

Joe and Jane Pewsitter in the majority of of parishes doesn't know or care, but for me I am totally disgusted. One on hand he talks about Satan and then says things that say otherwise

Rood Screen said...

Could it be that the Holy Ghost is speaking to the serious shepherds of the Church, telling them that now is the time to follow the delayed examples of Muller and Sarah by denouncing errors being spread, and irreverence being promoted, by the many false shepherds leading the Church?

It should be obvious enough by now that JPII and BXVI (I'll even include poor even Paul VI) failed to salvage Catholic doctrine and worship in any meaningful way, and so a different tactic is now required. Priests need to stop being wimpy and start speaking out against immorality and heresy, and start offering Mass ad orientem and administering Holy Communion to those who kneel (let laymen distribute to the clueless standers).

Laymen need a "#me too" movement, recalling how much personal suffering wayward shepherds have inflicted upon the faithful for six decades now. The post-VCII era has been nothing short of traumatic for true believers.

Rood Screen said...

During the pontificate of St. JPII, there was an opportunity to salvage VCII. However, the efforts of the saint clearly failed. BXVI was merely the last gasp of that lost opportunity. By now, most Catholics and even most bishops have little or no memory of the last council, so it's time to admit that despite its potential, it was effectively a failure. It's time to move on, with or without the secular Catholics and their leaders.

J. Pewsitter said...

Yes, priests should start speaking about the heresy of Traditionalism. That would be a good beginning.

Then they can denounce I-Am-A-Better-Catholic-Than-You-Because-I-Kneel-For-Communionism. That'll bring some outlandish heretics to tears.

Next, the #metoo Catholic crowd can be denounced as teetering on the edge of the heresy of "Victimism." The heresy is described as "I didn't get what I wanted, therefore I have suffered and am a victim."

Oh, what fun!

TJM said...


Thanks for the information on the dedication. I hope the dedication Mass will have authentic Catholic music rather than the dreck we are subjected to in most parishes.

We still have loads of Catholics in the rust belt (nominal, cultural) but they simply have walked away. Kumbaya just doesn't draw like Veni Creator Spiritus. My territorial parish, headed by a social worker masquerading as a Catholic priest, has done a great job, if thinning the flock on Sunday is your goal. When our parish had a more traditional pastor back in 1990, it was standing room only on Sunday. After he left we have had two successive social worker pastors and on the rare occasion I go there, none of the Masses are full. The parish school is packed, so there is a huge disconnect.

I suspect you have more traditional priests in the South than we have in the rust belt.

TJM said...

J. Pewsitter, is that you Kavanaugh? Your comment wreaks of Eau de Kavanaugh

Henry said...

Caution, TJM. There is a rumor that "Fr. Kavanaugh" is actually a faithful Catholic masquerading on the internet as a loony apostate.

TJM said...



Rood Screen said...

J. Pewsitter,

Thank you for your response to me comment.

What is "Traditionalism"?

Do those who kneel tell you they are better than those who stand, or is this a judgement you've made against them?

The only thing that matters is doing whatever Jesus wants, not what we want.

Charles G said...

The people in the choir at my novus ordo gig are not moral tearaways, but I don’t think they know, or if they know, really care about doctrinal issues. Someone posted some trite but relatively innocuous statement of the Holy Father on our WhatsApp group, and everyone oohed and ahed. Being of generally genial disposition I rarely talk about my issues with this Pope with them. I save my grumbling for the people at my vetus ordo gig, but even there I rarely give voice to grumbling. There’s not much I can do anyway but wait for the end of this papacy and pray.

J. Pewsitter said...

Rood - I comment on what I see posted here.

TJM said...


J. Pewsitter is Kavanaugh, so you will not get a straight answer. Maybe his next nom de plume will be "Bob and Weave"

J. Pewsitter said...

Traditionalism: "Not long after Pistoia, another form of doctrinal depreciation of man’s nature arose in France and Belgium. Commonly known as Traditionalism, its main tenet was the assertion that all spiritual, moral and religious knowledge is based on a primitive revelation of God to man handed down in an unbroken tradition. Its origins were theologically based on the Reformation, since human reason was denied the power of attaining by itself to any truths, especially those of natural theology: it made divine faith in a revealed tradition the source of all religious knowledge. Historically it was a reaction against eighteenth century Rationalism in the direction of the other extreme. Where the Rationalists claimed that reason was alone capable of all truth, the Traditionalists pointed to the debacle in religion and philosophy which this arrogance produced; they said the opposite - reason of itself is incapable of any truth." (Fr, John Hardon, SJ, History and Theology of Grace, Chapter III, Powers and Limitations of Fallen Nature)

"Since Traditionalism, in its fundamental principles, is a kind of Fideism, it falls under the condemnation pronounced by the Church and under the refutation furnished by reason and philosophy against Fideism." New Advent

"Tradition is the living faith of the dead. Traditionalism is the dead faith of the living." J Pelikan

Anonymous said...

Bee here:

Henry said on February 26, 2018 at 1:05 PM, "Caution, TJM. There is a rumor that "Fr. Kavanaugh" is actually a faithful Catholic masquerading on the internet as a loony apostate."

To what end? To bait people into anger? To goad those already too goaded? To form us in the virtues of patience and long-suffering? Yes, if what you say is true, it must be the last reason. :-)

God bless.

TJM said...


No, the purpose is to put a humorless "liberal" in his place.

Anonymous said...

Puh-leez! The correct cliche is "COULDN'T care less." If someone COULD care less, then they apparently care!

Love your blog.