Is Anybody There?

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit,' says Yahweh Sabaoth" Zach 4:6 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Dio di Signore, nella Sua volontà è nostra pace!" . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." Ben Franklin 1759

Monday, September 12, 2011

Those Dissenters Who Fail to Learn From History Are Doomed to Throwing Hissie Fits

I would like to award Robert McClory's piece for the Non-Catholic Fishwrap (NonCR) last Friday (Dissent? Don’t You Dare!) as winner of the "Hissie Fit of the Week" award. The article is a prime example of a dissenter who sees the writing on the wall & refuses to accept the fact that God is cleaning up His Church & he is on the wrong side of the wash cloth.
As I read the article, I couldn't help but wonder if the NonCR had been arround at the time orthodoxy won out over Pelagianism, Arianism etc if an ancestor of his in the undermining of the faith would have written a similar column.
What set the whole thing off was a comment Archbishop Chaput made a few days ago. The Archbishop said  that the church is “no place for cafeteria Catholics. If they don’t believe what the church teaches, they aren’t really Catholics.” Of course the Archbishop was right, as history has shown time after time whenever heresy & dissent has reared its ugly head.
I won't go through his entire list of dissenters over the last 40 years that he applauds. But it is clear he is suffering from a clear case of nostalgia for those post Vatican II days when dissent from such things as Humanae Vitae was welcome even by Bishops Conferences. (Yes he does applaud the Canadian Bishops.) & THAT NOSTALGIA IS CLOUDING HIS VIEW OF HISTORY!
He writes: "Church history reveals countless other periods when thoughtful and earnest dissent served to steer the church through crisis and into the light. There were times when theologians with their interesting and innovative ideas were invited to spar with other theologians and bishops in open sessions." Let's see, like at the Council of Nicea. & who ended up on the winning side? Not those theologians promoting their "thoughtful & earnest dissent." Not those promoting their "interesting and innovative ideas." What ended up happenning is that the Bishops, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit discerned that these ideas, even when they seemed to be a majority view, were not teh authentic teaching of the catholic Church & they rejected it.
Which brings me to a myth he is repeating & promulgating. He wrote in the next paragraph "Accepted and honored was the magisterium of the theologians alongside the magisterium of the bishops and pope." 1st of all, there never was a "magisterium of the theologians" except as a recent creation by certain dissenting theologians to justify what they were doing. Whenever debates arose about the teachings of the Church they were settled by a synod, or an Ecumenical Council.  Each & every Council's decisions were decided by the Bishops & ratified by the Pope or his representatives. Otherwise the official teachings of the Church arose out of the Bishops & Pope exercising their teaching charism. In otherwords the "magisterium of the Bishops in union with the Pope."  Not 1 teaching was ever promulgated by any so-called "magisterium of the theologians." (As an aside notice how he doesn't even get it right when he talks about the real magisterium. He leaves out 1 key factor, that the Bishops are in union with the Pope.)
But what I really have to laugh at is  this comment he makes near the end of the article: "The curtailing of all dissent in this era does not serve the good of the church. Rather it leads to disruption, disintegration and disaster."  Is he serious???? (OK rhetorical question.) It is the dissent over the last 40 years that has led to the "disruption. disintegration and disaster" in the Church, not the battling of it. It is that dissent that has led to "The massive defections of Catholics from the church in Europe and America," "the diminished respect and reverence those who stay are willing to bestow on their church leaders, (Actually only those dissenters who stay have this attitude towards orthodox Bishops & the Pope. Granted, thopse of us who want the Bishops to uphold orthodoxy have a diminshed respect towards those dissenting Bishops he extols.) & "the desperate steps some, like the 300 Austrian priests, are willing to take in order to preserve their integrity as representatives of the faith."
Of course he won't admit the truth, that it was dissent that caused the damage, or that they are on the losing side of history. But I suspect he knows the truth & that is why this bit of journalistic hand wringing was produced.
1 finally note, no those of us who uphold the authentic teaching of the only magisterium do not believe, as he claims that "salvation depends solely on obedience." Faith is the key. But obedience is a part of living out the faith. & disobedience results in sin. Great disobedience results in mortal sin. & if that sin is not repented of, then yes, you will end up in Hell. So "turning away from any official teaching is sinful, even heretical" not something to be proud of doing.


  • At 12/9/11 7:07 PM , Blogger Patrick Button said...

    The "magisterium of the theologians" what a silly idea! I consider myself to be an armchair theologian (though my chair actually lacks arms.) Do we Catholic bloggers get to be part of the "magisterium?"

  • At 13/9/11 12:14 AM , Blogger Al said...

    "Magisterium of bloggers" only for those of us who uphold the authentic teachings of the catholic Church!


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