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Thursday, November 13, 2014

The problem with letting a smile be your umbrella?

You get soaked.



Never go full ostrich, son.


Yes, Burke was purged. The happy-clappy interpretations are...less than, he says as gently as possible.

Two critical facts missed in all of the "hey, it was term limits!" arguments:

First, this is the second kick from the Pope this year, with the first being from the Congregation of Bishops. After which, we got Cupich in Chicago, for starters. Anybody else gotten a double removal like Burke? Nope.

Second, Burke being shuffled to a sinecure means he won't be able to participate in the 2015 version of the Synod. Just when his voice will be needed most, after a year of Cupich-y or Leow-ish appointments to the episcopate, he'll be on the outside looking in.

But, you reply, what about Muller and Pell?

It is true that Muller has been a godsend on marriage, but he's also a fan of liberation theology. I don't know how that squares with any sensible definition of "conservative," and his stance on liberation is no doubt a big plus in the pontiff's book. 

Pell is the best argument to the contrary, I grant. But it would be hard for the pope to boot Pell from the inner circle after inviting him there in the first place. It would reflect on his executive judgment, in much the same way a President will stick with one of his cabinet appointees, come hell or high water. Still, I think it would be worth watching to see if the Australian cardinal is gradually frozen out as the 2015 synod session approaches. And, yes, while it is nice that Melbourne got a good appointee, it's worth noting that Australia's Catholic population tops off at 5.6 million, whereas there are 2.3 million in the Archdiocese of Chicago alone. Put differently, Pell won't have any say in selecting bishops for my neck of the woods.

Still, why should you care? 

Number 1, "Vatican politics" gives you your bishop. Cupich, remember. In other words, "Personnel is policy." If it's "clericalism" to worry about who your shepherd is going to be, then we should all be clericalists. 

Second, there's a trend here, and it's pretty much all bad:

Pope Francis has made statements against the two tendencies of progressivism and traditionalism, without however clarifying what these two labels encompassed. Yet, if by words he distances himself from the two poles which confront each other in the Church today, by facts all tolerance is reserved for “progressivism”, while the axe falls upon what he defines as “traditionalism”.

Precisely. If you're a solid progressive, you get high-profile invites to significant Church events even if you're a coddler of abusive priests. [Read more about the dreadful Danneels in the reliably rad-trad Tablet.] Sadly, it appears that mercy is only for those of confirmed progressive bona fides. Whereas demotions, removals and defenestrations of entire orders are reserved only for those with the odor of Tradition.

But I'm sure none of that would ever percolate down to the local level, right? 


13 comments:

  1. Well, I'm at the point where I either need to put my head in the sand as pictured above or just walk out.
    The most interesting thing, for me, is realizing I don't care about divorce & remarriage or any of the other things people are worked up about. I'm clearly not a very good Catholic by Traddy standards and I know I'm a lousy one by Liberal standards. *shrug*

    Tired of the bickering. No interest in fighting anyone about anything. Just want to pay my bills, try to enjoy life with too many children, wonder why I wasted so many years on religious nonsense, and try to eke out some meager happiness in this miserable Vale of Tears.

    Not depressed or morose. Just. Done.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Easy enough to understand. I've decided to end it with the Roman Catholic Church. Beside the personal reasons, when being Catholic reduces to following the exploits of the hierarchy 100% of the time, you know there's something fundamentally rotten. I've not regretted leaving in the slightest.

      Delete
    2. Eternal salvation is not of concern to you? Or don't you believe in such things?

      Delete
    3. It's clear no one of consequence in the hierarchy believes. Why should I?

      I'm fine, like so many Episcopalians I know, so long as I ignore the institution and focus on my parish.

      Delete
  2. Would you please stop being so rational? Who are you to judge, anyway?


    Karl

    Karl

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  3. The insipidity of the Patheos Pollyannas is such that M.J. never reads them so many thanks for chasing down and leashing those puppies-of- peace-at-any-cost.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Yes, it may be tempting to walk out. But as Peter said to our Lord: To whom would we go? Within Holy Mother Church you have the only opportunity you will ever have to be saved: through Confession and Holy Communion. Don't cut off your nose to spite your face! And your suffering, in silence if you are too fed up to argue any more, will earn you great merit and save souls.
    Barbara

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  5. Card. Burke was also removed by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. So it was more of a triple removal.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Well said, Dale.

    Yet it's amazing how many polyannaish folks seem bent on trying to explain it away - as if it's inconceivable.

    Power politics has a long history in the Vatican, though it has not been so naked for quite a while. And by itself it wouldn't bother me, if it weren't for the fact that there's an obvious theological agenda at work in so many of these personnel moves - a theological agenda very much on he progressive side of the fence.

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  7. We'd be willing to die martyrs at the hands of some bloody Communist or ISIS executioner but we'll abandon Catholicism because of turmoil within the episcopacy? What are we here for if not to follow Jesus in communion with the angels and saints? I'm not here because of the Pope or any bishop - they are servants are they not? If they fall away and take a billion souls with them, that's on them. I've not been given any other way to proceed to Jesus but as a Catholic.

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  8. Dale,
    "Pope Francis has made statements against the two tendencies of progressivism and traditionalism, without however clarifying what these two labels encompassed" Does this sound like Rowan Williams 2.0? Been there done that.

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  9. "Well, I'm at the point where I either need to put my head in the sand as pictured above or just walk out. The most interesting thing, for me, is realizing I don't care about divorce & remarriage or any of the other things people are worked up about."

    Those two things are related. Beware.

    Louise

    ReplyDelete