No matter how bad things were through my twenty years of trying to preserve the faith for my children, even if you could get veteran Catholic journalists to privately agree Bishop so and so was a train wreck, they would never agree to expose a situation for what it was.
I used to refer to them as the armchair Catholics.
In reading Royals thesis, at first it seems like he doesn't get the gravity of the Pope's theological war, but there is no mistaking that he smells something and it's a smelly smell.
Perhaps even more surprising, we’re hearing from some sources that though Cardinal Bergoglio came into the Vatican with no firm agenda, the hope now is that he may be able to re-ignite the “Spirit of Vatican II,” which he had known as a young priest in Argentina.
Like much else in the past year and a half in the Church, it’s hard to say what any of this means. To take only the last item, there’s nothing wrong with the Spirit of Vatican II – if what we mean is the Holy Spirit, present since Pentecost in preserving the Church in living unity with God in charity. But if, as some hope, that Spirit is some radically progressive current, what can only be called a spirit of division and hubris that thought itself superior to the whole prior history of the Church – a kind of uber-Protestantism that paradoxically insisted it was being more Catholic than the pope – then we are in for some troubled days indeed.
It turns out Joan Chittister's shtick might qualify for being more Catholic than the Pope.
Royal refers to another well-written piece that gets to the heart of the serious problem with this pontificate.
I’ll get to specifics shortly. But I want to point out – hoping that I’m wrong – something I fear has already begun.
After Vatican II the Church went through decades of turmoil because of “the Spirit of Vatican II,” a spirit that contradicted the Conciliar documents and much of Christian history. But that didn’t matter. That wayward “spirit” carried all before it.
We are, I believe, close to what may become a Spirit of Bergoglio, another period of confusion based, once again, not on the pope’s actual words, but in the unbalanced emotions to which certain, casual expressions of his have given rise.
Another keen observation, the things the Pope doesn't say are as bad as the things he does:
Sandro Magister, the steady Vatican observer, claims there are now ten Cardinals who have publicly opposed the “Kasper/Bergoglio position.” The opposition is clear. But can we say the pope backs the highly controversial proposals Kasper put forward, even though the pope praised him for what he termed his “theology done on one’s knees”?
After years of observing the Vatican, I can’t say – and that’s perhaps most worrisome of all. If there’s going to be a development in pastoral practice on such a heated question as divorced and remarried Catholics, we need a clear statement from the pope himself. Perhaps he wishes to let the debate proceed before rendering judgment. But in the meantime, his efforts to reduce confrontation with the culture and proclaim God’s forgiveness to those “on the periphery” seem to have led to open division – within the Church.
How's that for refreshing honesty.
The lines in the sand are drawn and we are openly dividing.
The division has been there for 50 years.
Maybe Pope Francis thought we'd sacrifice the salvation of our children to keep the peace. If so, it was a gross miscalculation.
This is going to get ugly.
All I care about in my little area of influence is keeping people on the Ark as it plays itself out.
This too shall pass.