First the good news - Thomas Peters health has improved enough to be back at the keyboard.
Continued prayers for his recovery!
He's authored a piece that conveys a few things to me.
1. Urban legends about what inspires faithful Catholics to speak the truth - even when our Holy Father is the recipient of the message - live on.
2. There is still a death grip on clericalism.
The Holy Father informed us of his trajectory through his apostolic exhortation, followed by the actions of replacing Cardinal Burke with Cardinal Wuerl to advise him on what priests in the United States have the spiritual substance and attributes to be a bishop.
Now, numerous faithful Catholics who in charity had been giving Pope Francis' imprudent statements the benefit of the doubt, have publicly calibrated what Cdl. Wuerl's appointment will mean on the ground relative to the catechesis of tools for salvation.
Because it doesn't paint a pretty picture, evangelists who take their role seriously need and want to be most cautious about how to proceed in the public square.
Last week, Thomas threw out the bone that perhaps Cardinal Wuerl would have a better grip on spiritual substance and attributes here in the USA because Cardinal Burke has been tending to affairs with the Romans. (A little navigation tip. To reach the destination of the aforementioned suggestion, one must tie oneself to one's seat to sail beyond his caricature of John Allen as "sober-minded".)
Reactions to that suggestion were not as positive as Thomas had hoped.
Some of the comments and reactions to my post earlier this week on Pope Francis’s decision not to renew Cardinal Burke’s membership on the Congregation for Bishops revealed a disturbing trend to me, namely, the extent to which many Catholics have adopted an apprehensive attitude about the current pontiff.
First of all, I think we're beyond the apprehension stage. We were apprehensive during the eight months of commentary undermining and insulting the 2000 years of the Deposit of Faith and those who love and evangelize It.
Though Pope Francis has issued numerous clarifications, he then went ahead and contradicted said clarifications with an apostolic exhortation which ratified the trajectory of his original statements.
Still, most faithful Catholics have been waiting for the actions which inform us what food he wants placed on the table of every parish and home.
He has given America his leader for that crusade.
Pope Francis selected a spineless bishop who operates a chancery that persecutes faithful priests and teaches Church laws can or should be ignored and disobeyed at our own will.
We all know how the witness that Church law can be disobeyed at will plays out. If the bishop can select what laws to obey and disobey, each one of us can also select which laws we choose to obey and disobey.
Whether he intended to or he didn't, Pope Francis has repeatedly conveyed that the laws and teachings of the Church are small-minded rules of sourpusses and under his watch the the road to salvation will be the abandonment of teaching right judgment and distinctions between sin and virtue for the new church of social service and being giddy.
We have reached the point wherein Pope Francis isn't just saying these things. He is now taking the actions that signal he is carrying out his plan. He is selecting Cardinals who have carried them out in their See.
Each one of us who have suffered the ill effects of this counterfeit church knows what this means for the abilities of priests to teach the substance in the Catechism, and teach obedience to the Catechism and Church law in our schools, parishes and in our own homes. And, we know what it means for the salvation of the masses of uncatechized.
Thomas seems to take the position that faithful Catholics who are laying out the ramifications and consequences of this foolish circus we have watched for eight months is some kind of a cynical game:
Sure, I get it, it’s fun to be a cynic. It’s cool to be the one always predicting the next bad thing that’s going to happen...So I can understand why some orthodox Catholics may be enjoying the novelty of being a papal skeptic.
I beg to differ with this gross understatement and caricature.
Orthodox Catholics (I'm not sure I like that characterizations as it implies faithfulness to doctrines is among a smorgasbord of sects and practices within the Catholic religion - all of which lead to salvation) have an immutable oath of unity to Christ's Church, led by the Roman Pontiff, written on our soul.
We are acutely aware that many of Christ's elect who have suffered through this undisciplined and counterfeit church have lost touch with that immutable oath.
We have painfully watched the Pope undermine our teachings and sacred traditions which offer the highest unblemished gifts, surrender and respect to Christ and have prayerfully and thoughtfully navigated these waters so as not to scandalize those suffering from despair.
How this situation could ever be caricatured as fun or enjoyable is beyond me.
I have repeatedly stated that I believe Pope Francis when he tells us he is a faithful son of Christ's Church. I am confident in this conviction. Sadly, faithfulness to Church teaching does not preserve one from making foolish statements and decisions. My greatest duty to Christ is to ensure I do and say whatever I must to keep the flock within my home from falling into the pit.
There is no circumstance wherein this girl will leave the Church Christ gave me for the salvation of my soul. I have every confidence that even if Pope Francis formally restructures to validate the tribunals of persecutors within, I will find refuge and ride it out. I have every intention of pointing those within my home (and readers here) to that refuge.
I don't know if Pope Francis will take it that far but the evidence of record would lead any prudent and rational person to project the possibility of a rotten edifice being constructed in the farcical nightmare blossoming before us. I am sorry to say it. It pains me to say it.
At the end of the day, I believe that Peters sees it himself:
The more I read about Pope Francis, the more I am convinced that the soul of this papacy is up for grabs.
I am also firmly convicted that it is a duty of our Baptism to inform our loving and beloved Holy Father that we will not subject ourselves or our children to the false church within for a nanosecond longer. Most of us have fled and already found refuge and he is making those refuges fodder for the apostates who have control of power within our Chanceries because of weak bishops like Cardinal Wuerl.
Further, I don't see Pope Francis as one who wishes to hold onto the cult of clericalism enabling this pathetic situation.
It is duly noted that when Joseph Bottum suggested the deposit of faith was an obstacle to joy and evangelism, he was tarred, feathered, taken to the shed and blackballed
The cult that has protected men who put on liturgical robes, take position under our Crucifix and say the exact same thing has contributed to 40 years of grand larceny of our religion.
Perhaps Pope Francis suffers from the delusion that there are enough Catholics in the cult to continue the crusades. If he didn't know eight months ago, he certainly should check the pedigree of those who are alerting him to the reality check: Those days are gone for good and they are never coming back. Ever.