Since faith is one, it must be professed in all its purity and integrity". Pope Francis/Pope Benedict

Saturday, 27 July 2019

Charity demands much from us - traditionally-minded and otherwise


Today's attack on Michael Voris - stemming as it did from recent accusations against the SSPX made by Church Militant - has got me thinking about charity.

What have I concluded? It is sorely lacking among Catholics of all stripes, not just one particular Catholic group or another.

It is said, by both Paul and the Beloved Disciple, that charity is the greatest of virtues. We can have faith. We can have hope. But if we don't have charity, then, well, faith and hope mean nothing.

Yes, it is that simple and stark. And it is sorely missed in our world today.

We are all familiar with the epithets the pope hurls at simple, small-town bloggers like myself, Barona, Vox Cantoris, Boniface, and so on. Pharisee. Rigid. Rosary-counter. Self-absorbed, Promethean neo-Pelagian.

We are also familiar, no doubt, with the times in our lives when Catholics who don't think as we do have resorted to ad hominems and have looked upon us unfavorably as a result of what we say. Blogger and otherwise.

These ought to irk us, and rightly so, as they are quite uncharitable.

But - and I say this with a strong awareness of my own culpability in this - that does not justify returning the favor as traditionally-minded Catholics.

Like I said earlier, I get it. We are angry and frustrated after being poked at with a stick in a cage for 50 to 60 years. We feel robbed and we want things to be solved as of yesterday.

But really --- does it justify the viritol and mud-slinging we see between various traditional Catholic factions on a daily basis?

No one is immune from this lack of charity. I, admittedly, capitulated to this with my short series on the "true traditionalists."

Barona has admitted to personal, unrestrained anger at some Catholic figures in the past, and issued a public apology on this blog.

The FSSP, during some important festivities here in Canada last year, used the occasion to once again lamblast the SSPX for being "in schism" and whatever else.

Some Catholics who attend Masses offered by the SSPX like to opine that the Fraternity was created to destroy the SSPX.

I would go on, but I have made my point.

Charity is sorely lacking in many, many Catholics these days. It doesn't matter who I am talking about, we could all use lessons in charity from time to time. Traditionally-minded Catholic or otherwise. Even if it is the same lesson we keep on needing to be told.

The virtue of Charity is so important that entire books have been written on it, and continue to be written as I speak.

It demands a lot from us, this virtue. It always has, and as humans, we have failed in exhibiting it as as a whole time and time again. The only difference between earlier times and this one is that the stunning lack of it is more accessible for all to see.

Perhaps - just perhaps - it is time to break this cycle, starting with our own lives.

9 comments:

J Haggerty said...

'Woe to you when all men speak well of you' Luke 6-26

In his criticism of certain Catholic bishops Michael Voris knew that he would be attacked.
His enemies are all too ready to use his past against him. They want him to fall from grace.

Take the case of Fr. Paul Kalchik of Illinois, who burned a rainbow flag in his church which had previously hung over the altar.
The previous priest at Resurrection Church died while hooked up to a sex machine.

In burning the rainbow flag, and in praying for the soul of the priest who died so tragically, Fr. Kalchik was acting in a priestly and prophetic manner.
But he was suspended from his duties as a priest by his superior Cardinal Blase Cupich.
Fr. Kalchik has been forced into hiding.

Mr. Voris has supported Fr. Kalchik while calling out Cardinal Cupich.
He knows this is an unprecedented step for a lay Catholic to take, but we are faced with an unprecedented crisis in the church.

This is the gravest crisis since the Reformation, but we have many like Cupich who are calling sin a virtue and virtue a sin.

Believe me, the Protestant churches are in a state of equal disarray over the same issue.
Tony Campolo has joined his wife in jumping aboard the Gay Juggernaut.
John MacArthur and John Piper are ready to stand for truth against sin, but they stand almost alone.

Pope Francis could make a difference by affirming the teaching of the church while offering pastoral guidance to young people trapped in self-destructive ways of life.

Francis fears the fury of politicians and media figures if he calls the world to repentance on this issue.
He should be like the Puritans who were so afraid of the Lord that they had no fear of men.

'Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravening wolves.' Matthew 7:15






Irenaeus said...

Thank you, John. What is perturbing is that the most violent criticism of Mr. Voris comes from laymen.

J Haggerty said...

In my reference to Tony Compola I should have said that his son is gay as is the son of the former Irish president, Mary McAleese.

Tony Compola used to debate the issue with his wife Peggy who long supported gay rights.
Last year he changed his mind and now has a YouTube vlog in favour of gay marriage.

Meanwhile Mary McAleese, a very able politician, campaigns for the church in Ireland to relax its official opposition on same-sex relations. She is down on priests who support the Catholic Catechism on this issue.

A Scottish Free Church minister, David Robertson, has a searching blog called The Wee Flea.
He suggested that ministers in the official Church of Scotland, a very different church, came out in favour of gay relations because their children, like young people everywhere, are open-minded about sexuality.

Mr Robertson rightly thinks that young people are children of their time and are hardly the best guide to complex moral issues.

In the gospels Jesus makes it clear that only the male-female relationship is normative.
The distinguished New Testament scholar Tom Wright has said that St. Paul was not merely referring to temple prostitutes when he prescribed homosexual acts.

The violence and discrimination suffered by gay people has been a major factor in Christians having a change of heart such as the English-Canadian columnist Michael Coren.

In my reading and research I am sceptical of the biological argument that people are born gay.
A psychiatrist I read thought that the crucial time in the child's development occurred at about two years of age.

I have admired so many writers and artists who were gay from Benjamin Britten to Duke Ellington's brilliant composer and arranger, Billy Strayhorn.
Just now I am reading the collected stories of James Purdy, one of the most original writers in the United States and a man whose life was a study in isolation.

We know from statistics that gay men are more likely to contract STDs and to die prematurely.
The argument for gay marriage is that there would be a reduction in STDs and that there would be less alienation, depression and suicide.

My hunch is that 10 years from now there will be little demand for same-sex marriage. We could see a return to promiscuity and another Aids epidemic.

I take the view that lesbianism is a very different phenomenon and should not be lumped together with male homosexuality.
The English novelist Sylvia-Townsend Warner lived with another woman all her life and it was a source of strength and mutual comfort.
I would be interested in hearing Jordan Peterson's thoughts on this since everything he writes is compelling.

C.S. Lewis said he was not wise enough in Christ to have a solution to homosexuality.

John Haggerty said...

Can I correct a typo?
I wrote PREscribed when I meant to write PROscribed; that is - forbidden, barred, disallowed.

'The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity, and debauchery; idolatry and sorcery; hatred, discord, jealousy, and rage; rivalries, division, factions' Galatians 5:19.

The unregenerate are shocked and angry when the word of God informs them that acts of the flesh (such as Paul is describing) are self-worship instead of the worship of God.

John Calvin defined depravity as loving the world more than the Creator.
Thus we are all, at heart, idolators and lovers of depravity.
Try preaching this to people who are into Wicca, Theosophy, channelling, the chakra, astrology, and bithaka Yoga!

In Toronto street preachers are doing just that (YouTube) and being shouted down by angry crowds.
It's the very same in Glasgow, Edinburgh and London.

Christoph Rebner said...

Ît is essential to warn brethren of deviations from the narrow path.
This must be done with reference to the Truth of the Gospel lived by Jesus Christ and ministered to by the Holy Spirit to the Glory of G'd.
Those under attack will know the difference to other stuff.

John Haggerty said...

'Then he said to his disciples, The harvest is great but the labourers are few.'
Matthew 9:37.

Read the latest transcript from The Vortex (July 30 2019) - The World Is Not Good.
It made me think of an old hymn we used to sing at the end of Mass at my Roman Catholic school in Glasgow, Scotland.

'Faith of Our Fathers, Mary's prayer,
Shall win our country back to thee.'

The full text of Faith Of Our Fathers is on Wikipedia.
It was composed in England by Frederick Faber, a contemporary of John Henry Newman, in 1849.

John Haggerty said...

I am afraid that Pope Francis grows ever more determined, Irenaeus.
He is indeed the pontiff who intends to reinvent Catholicism from top to toe, and will brook no dissent, at least not inside Rome.

The priest known as the Italian James Martin, Father Maurizio Chiodi, has been invited to join the staff in Rome of the revamped and re-visioned John Paul II Institute.
Francis has fired the old staff in a night of the long knives.

See:

What Is Happening At Rome's John Paul Institute? Christopher Altieri, Catholic Herald online July 30 2019.

Pro-Contraception Priest invited to teach at new John Paul Institute in Rome by Diane Montagana. Life Site July 30 2019.

Controversy Continues At John Paul II Institute. Church Militant, David Nussman July 31 2019.

What would John Paul think of Pope Francis's destruction of John Paul II Institute? Life Site, John Paul Meenan, July 30 2019.

Is it not time for Pope Benedict to speak out clearly and condemn the Francis Revolution?

Pope Benedict would risk schism, yes, but if he remains silent, a far more damaging and irreversible schism lies ahead.

Fr. Chiodi may just be the final tipping point.

Anonymous said...

The more I read online about the drastic changes in policy at the John Paul II Institute, the more I feel I am seeing The Alice In Wonderland nature of Bergoglio's New Age Catholicism.

As Humpty Dumpty says to Alice:
'Words mean whatever I want them to mean.'
Bergoglio's apologists waffle and word-change as the fancy takes them.

From Progetto Gionata, 28 July 2019:
Il teologo Maurizio Chiodi: 'Omosessuali. Una pastorale oltre la retorio della aperture.'
The Theology of Maurizio Chiodi: 'Homosexuals. A pastoral ministry beyond the rhetoric of openings.'
The Google translation is very poor, but it is not hard to see that Chiodi is a politician, using the debased currency of pseudo-academic language.
When I listen to the homilies of my Reformed Baptist minister, I know he is under the Gospel of Grace.
The same cannot be said of Chiodi. He gives off the odour of Whiggery; the kind of honeyed words beloved by Episcopalians. The rhetoric of openings? Humpty Dumpty indeed!

Dan Hitchens, Catholic Herald 12 January 2019.
Seifert: Vatican's pro-contraceptive theologian must 'revoke his grave errors' or resign.
(The Catholic philosopher Josef Seifert takes Chiodi to task.)

Fatima Center, December 27 2018, Chris Ferrari:
Vatican Covers for Latent Heretic to Join Wrecked Pontifical Academy.
(A look at Marie-Jo Thiel the French ethics academic who may well have the Pope's ear.)

In the spirit of the much missed Fr. Nicholas Gruner, Mr Ferrari quotes the warning of Sister Lucia of Fatima:
'The final battle between the Lord and the kingdom of Satan will be about marriage and the family.'

Two books I have ordered:

'Lost Shepherd: How Pope Francis is Misleading His Flock' by Philip F Lawler.
'The Idol of Our Age - How the Religion of Humanity Subverts Christianity' by Daniel J Mahoney.

It is now clear that Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre continues to haunt the post-Conciliar church as the ghost of Hamlet's father haunted the battlements of Elsinore.

John Haggerty said...

The comment above is mine, it was not my intention to sign in under Anon.

Last night I watched a-four-year old vlog by the always dependable John Vennari, friend of the late Fr. Nicholas Gruner. He quotes from the documents of Trent, which was he reminds us a dogmatic council:
'If anyone says that the Mass ought to be celebrated in the vernacular tongue only ... let him be anathema.'

This is from: CFN Media 6 - 'Pope Francis Says Tridentine Mass A Step Backwards.' Catholic Family News 18 March 2015.
Mr Vennari describes Pope Francis' liturgical theology as 'Modernism with a smile,' a description that may haunt the Bergoglio papacy for years to come.

Mr Vennari and Fr. Gruner have reawakened my Catholic identity as has Toronto Catholic Witness.
Thus inspired I am reading John O'Malley's book 'Trent - What Happened at the Council' (2013) alongside 'The Calvin Handbook' (2009) edited by Herman J Selderhuis and with contributions from over 50 Calvin scholars.

If the Reformation was a violent family quarrel, can it be healed through the work of the Holy Spirit and our prayers?