Monday, September 11, 2006

Ask A Straightforward Question...
You deserve a straightforward answer

During the past weeks and months, I've displayed a cautious optimism towards both Pope Benedict and my local Ordinary, Bishop Burbidge.

Since then, I've had a couple of readers to this blog ask me some pretty simple questions -- all boiling down to this; Pope Benedict and Bishop Burbidge have all the authority they need to correct any given abuse and/or scandal, and also to free the Traditional Latin Mass (within-in their perspective realms). So why don't they?

To answer you, guys... I don't know.

Are they treading maybe a little too carefully? Are they master politicians? Are they wolves in sheeps clothing? Do they talk the talk, but fail to walk the walk? Are they really nothing more than liberals who put on a good conservative front?

I don't know.

But consider this possibility...

Is this God, in God's good time, allowing the real enemies within The Church even more time to expose themselves, so the likes of Pope Benedict and Bishop Burbidge can nail 'em? Is this time of tribulation a Divine Test for the Faithful? Is this Divine Punishment for allowing ourselves to become complacent and this is our time to be lost in the wilderness?

One thing I do know. All this is God's will, not mine. Sometimes God makes things happen in 40 days and 40 nights. Sometimes it takes 40 years. Who are we to put time constraints on The Almighty?

In the meantime, I'll just keep trying to fight the good fight.

9 Comments:

Blogger Paul, just this guy, you know? said...

Brother, you know I share your frustration, your impatience, and your determination.

What we do know is that Christ will present himself an unspotted bride.

In the meantime, we do what little we can.

9:37 PM  
Blogger Gaufridus said...

VSC,

Pope Benedict and Bishop Burbidge have all the authority they need to correct any given abuse and/or scandal, and also to free the Traditional Latin Mass (within-in their perspective realms). So why don't they?

To answer you, guys... I don't know.


Speaking only for myself, neither do I. Which is why I find all the "hype" (or, should I say, the positive expectations) to ring very hollow. Allow me to elabourate...

How long has it been since His Holiness the Pope ascended to the Pontificate? Now, as that was happening, I seem to recall lots of hype flowing through the traditionalist internet circles. "We're gonna git a Universal Indult, by golly!" "Yee-hah! 'God's Rottweiler' is gonna liberate the traditional Latin Mass!" "Habemas Papam, pardner!" Etc.

I admit, I got caught up in it, too, mostly because I simply wanted to believe that the current scandalous situation in the Church WRT Catholic Tradition would soon be over. I didnt really know much about Pope Benedict XVI when he was Cardinal Ratzinger.

Time passed and nothing substantial happened. I suppose we can argue about the definition of "substantial", if you prefer, but I think you get my drift. Anyhow, after it became obvious that nothing substantial was happening, I started to ask myself, "Okay, just who is this guy?"

Turns out (to me), then-Cardinal Ratzinger was the cleric in charge of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which you probably know was called the Inqisition before the liberal do-gooders changed the name. (Kind of like how our War Department became the Department of Defence. Interestingly, the Department of Defence has ever won a war; coincidentally, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has not successfully defended the Faith.)

Anyhow, I thought to myself, "Well, heck, this guy was pretty high up there and in charge of Catholic doctrine, shouldnt he...?"

...Wait a minute. Then-Cardinal Ratzinger was in charge of Catholic doctrine... Novus Ordo "Catholic" doctrine...

Oh, no...

Well, what else did he do, before he became the Pope?

Turns out, he "just happened to be" one of the guys who, as Fr. Ratzinger, was instrumental in permitting the Liberal errors of Vatican II to exist in the first place.

Now, I know I'm no genius. I realise I am extreme in my views. I understand that I can be abrasive and controversial, intolerant and insensitive... and those are among my better qualities.

But for the love of God and all that is holy, how can anyone realistically expect that the Pope formerly known as Cardinal Ratzinger is going to suddenly, and uncharacteristically, do an about face and repudiate what amounts to his life's work?

Apart from a Miracle, I just dont see it happening. I realise this is just my opinion. I know that I am not infallible and dont have perfect information. I can only draw conclusions from what I read about, observe, and experience.

Concerning Bishop Burbidge, I'm no longer in the Raleigh diocese and I know next to nothing about the man other than what I read about here online and hear listening to rumours from traditionalist friends in the actual world.

I do, however, know a good bit about setting policy, leading men, what actions are decisive, and what actions are not.

You and I both have military backgrounds. So, I would argue that you know a good bit about these things, too.

I applaud you, VSC, for, for example, greeting His Excellency correctly and traditionally. But, I ask you, "Did he expect it? Or did you surprise him with it?"

An analogy... You've probably been a Company Gunny at some point, and have probably escorted young Marines in to see the C.O.

You and I both know the correct way to report to one's commanding officer. We both know that if you screw it up, you get hammered, told to get out and do it again the right way, and by God you had better get it right the next time or you are going to be one tired individual.

Using the military analogy, a Bishop is very much like a General Officer. You've probably heard this before. When you report to a general, your shit had better be that much more in one bag, or the Sergeant Major is going to have your battalion sergeant major's ass, who is going to have your company first sergeant's ass, who is going to have your platoon sergeant's ass, who is going to have your squad leader's ass, who -- by the time the shit rolls downhill -- is going to really make life difficult for you for forgetting what you were taught in boot camp (catechism) and embarrassing yourself and your unit (parish).

Not to mention that all the officers down through the chain of command are going to have their professionalism and credibility questioned. "Hey, Colonel Benotz, who was that fucked up Lance Corporal you sent me the other day? Why havent you straightened him out by now? You getting soft on me?" You know the deal.

Anyhow, my point is that Bishop Burbidge -- if he is a "traditionalist" (and, no, I dont like using sub-labels when it comes to the Catholic Faith, but what else can you do?) -- should have expected EVERYONE to do what you did and, if they didnt, either he or his Auxiliary Bishop or one of the Priests assigned to his Curia should've corrected the deficiency right there, on the spot, and the hell with anyone's fragile "feelings" or precious, little "self-esteem"!

It would've taken one, maybe two examples before everyone either (a) got the hint and did it the right way, or (b) left. If "a", then great, let us move on. If "b", well tough. They probably werent serious about the Faith or Catholic tradition in the first place.

Is this God, in God's good time, allowing the real enemies within The Church even more time to expose themselves? Is this time of tribulation a Divine Test for the Faithful? Is this Divine Punishment for allowing ourselves to become complacent and this is our time to be lost in the wilderness?

Of course, everything is in God's hands. He will not let the Church fail: we all know that. What we dont know is how things are going to go in the meantime.

That said, isnt it reasonable to expect that the people who should be exemplifying all that is good and right (i.e., Catholic priests, and especially the bishops and the Pope) actually stand up for what is good and right? Is anyone within the ordinary Church (i.e., outside the SSPX) going to stand up for Catholic Tradition?

One thing I do know. All this is God's will, not mine. Sometimes God makes things happen in 40 days and 40 nights. Sometimes it takes 40 years. Who are we to put time constraints on The Almighty?

Well, once again, the situation now is not without precedent. The Arian heresy lasted something like 400 years, and it took lay Catholic action to fix the situation because most of the official hierarchy (including the Popes during that era, if I recall correctly) had lapsed into heresy.

The sad thing about the current situation is that the majority of Catholic laymen dont really see anything wrong or, seeing what is wrong, just go along with the Novus Ordo because, as the thinking goes, the Pope made it up, so it must be okay. Or, its better not to make waves and rock the boat... Afterall, you dont want someone calling you a bad name, do you? Nah, just go along and get along and maybe someone else will fix the problems.

Well, enough of my ranting for now. Keep fighting the good fight.


Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum

7:35 AM  
Blogger Dad29 said...

On a blog run by a US Marine, I expect a bit more mental toughness than I see here.

In going through BCT, was your DI a softy? Nope. He was a tough taskmaster (and maybe worse than that.) The idea was to prepare you for life/death combat.

Your current DI is God. You are given a tough AIT--persevere in prayer and patience through travails.

Live with it. It could be worse. You could be your wife--giving childbirth, right?

4:32 PM  
Blogger Vir Speluncae Catholicus said...

First of all, what exactly is BCT and AIT? Those must be army terms. Do you possibly mean ITR (Infantry Training Regiment (it hasn't been called that since the 70's), and MOS School?

Secondly, what mental weakness do you think you see in this post?

Sorry, I can't give a specific answer to a vague generality.

With that said, all I can do is guess at what exactly you mean. Do you mean "weak" because I readily admit that I don't have all the answers? Do you mean "weak" when I admit that I'm having trouble understanding exactly how the
Father is going about making His will be done?

Or do you mean "weak" when you said to me persevere in prayer and patience through travails? I thought I made myself clear when I ended my posting with the following -- "In the meantime, I'll just keep trying to fight the good fight.

Isn't that exactly what fight the good fight means?

4:57 PM  
Blogger hooligan said...

I follow gaufridus's argument, I do see his point. However, change can come from within, it is not impossible for a "liberal" entity to become "conservative". After all, isn't the reverse situation, conservative to liberal, exactly what happened to the Church during and after Vatican II? The pendulum can, and will, swing both ways eventually. We are all just impatient for the return of discipline and orthodoxy.

6:32 PM  
Blogger Vir Speluncae Catholicus said...

Hooligan,
I see G's point as well. I also agree with much he says. But then again, you've raised a valid point.

Yeasterdays liberal most certainly can become today's conservative.

Case in point, Pope Pius IX. The liberals wet all over themselves with glee upon his election. And as history will bear me out, Pope Pius IX was ANYTHING but a liberal.

6:54 PM  
Blogger Dad29 said...

Yes, BCT (Basic Combat Training) and AIT (Advanced Individual Training) is USArmy nomenclature (or was, when I was in just after Custer & Co. bought it...)

Regrettably, I allowed my quick-response to over-run the actual text of your post.

Carry on w/prayer and perseverance, as you have been doing.

You could also grant both the Bishop and our Pope the possibility that they know what they're doing with their authority.

In Milwaukee, we've waited +5 years for our Abp. to begin applying the baseball bat to the noggins. And he actually DID SO, only 10 days ago.

Patience (fr. Latin, patior, to suffer...)

1:39 PM  
Blogger Vir Speluncae Catholicus said...

You could also grant both the Bishop and our Pope the possibility that they know what they're doing with their authority.
.

Ahhhh, but I do! Do you recall me posting the following? Is this God, in God's good time, allowing the real enemies within The Church even more time to expose themselves, so the likes of Pope Benedict and Bishop Burbidge can nail 'em?

SHEESH!! (evil lil' grin!!)

3:23 PM  
Blogger Husband said...

I presume those of you blogging here live in the Raleigh area.

I have presented your new Bishop with the invitation to show his fidelity to marriage.

I was abandoned by my Catholic wife of nearly ten years in 1989. In 1993 an American Tribunal gave her a decision in favor of nullity. After my appeal to Rome in 1997 and finally in 2002 the Roman Rota ruled in favor of our sacramental, valid marriage.

At every single place she and her civilly married lover have lived the Bishops and the clergy have supported her adultery and my persecution. I have remained faithful to my vows and still wish the sacrament to be restored.

But, I am at the end of my toleration for this while remaining in the Catholic Church.

I have asked the Bishop, directly, to intervene in our marriage and to require reconciliation or to excommunicate the spouse who would refuse reconciliation for extra-canonical reasons, which are not consistent with the teaching of the Catholic Church.

I have put it plainly that he must stand with the marriage, as ruled valid and sacramental by two Papal Courts in Rome. If my wife refuses reconciliation that is just I will formally leave the Catholic Church if she is not excommunicated. We have five children who need parents and who have a God-given right to parents who are married and together. If all this is not enough for a pastor to act firmly, decisively and justly then I have wasted fifty-two years as a Catholic.

I will remain outside the Catholic Church, joining no other, for the rest of the life that God allows me. I am not the adulterer, my wife and the Catholic Church are.

I have no desire to argue this here. I place it here because of the nature of the discussion I came upon.

Do what you will with it.

9:05 PM  

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