Ann Barnhardt had another conniption fit, this time over Timothy Dolan. Now, I agree with Ann about the general emasculation of the Church. I don’t get as dramatic about it as she does…sometimes she gives the impression that if she actually met the priest of her dreams, built like Carpenter Jesus driving teh gayz and heretics out with a whip, she’d spread ‘em like a randy Randian heroine…which would be embarrassing for both parties I’m sure, not to mention a mortal sin. I figure that in this culture, even to become a priest requires quite a bit of fortitude, so I will give them the benefit of the doubt when possible. Here’s one doing it right. And here are some folks who aren’t.
Likewise, “barefooted lesbian wannabe-witch-priestess does a pagan dance on the altar with a bowl of incense” makes a lot of assumptions about intent. Yes, that’s what it looks like, and yes, that’s not a woman’s job or physical place, but you don’t know. [UPDATE: more info submitted...and "4 directions" and "Zen meditation" = not Catholic, period. If it looks like a priestess, and calls quarters like a priestess... but if they just spent umpteen dollars to create sacred space, why is somebody doing it the low-rent way?]. Likewise, I have no trouble with the notion of a GLBT ministry; they’ve got a problem, and they should be ministered to. Realistically, I know it’s quite likely that said ministry isn’t offering aids on how to be celibate or deal with same-sex attraction. In that case, the problem is heresy. But that’s always the problem. There they are singing the hideous “All are welcome” (instead of the Introit, no doubt…what IS the Introit for the re-dedication of a church?). The liturgy is weak, and the rest follows from that, particularly the emasculation. In the two Extraordinary Form parishes I’ve sung in, men outnumber women in the Schola, while in Ordinary Form parishes, you practically have to bribe men to sing (as I’m being bribed.). Now, the problem with heresy is that it needs to be fought with catechesis and liturgy. You can’t just assume that people are heretics by looking at them, and you can’t throw them out for being heretics; if we did that, any more, there’d be no Church. You have to keep the poison from spreading, and correct the problem (something that the bishops have been most lame about in re Pelosi, Sebelius, et al). But unlike a blogger, a bishop can’t go off half-cocked and make assumptions about where people are at. That’s not kissing the world’s heinie; that’s making the most charitable assumption about a soul in need.
Then there’s her schism prophecy. Here’s the old part:
There will be, at some point, an informal schism. The Catholic Church in America will quietly acquiesce to the Obama regime in order to keep the money flowing and the 501(c)(3) slavery provision intact, and will thus cease to be Catholic. The TRUE Church will then be cut off from the mainstream and go underground. This cleavage will almost perfectly align with the Order of the Mass. The Novus Ordo “new Mass” parishes will surrender to the Obama regime because the Novus Ordo Mass was an invention and a tactical maneuver by the Marxist-homosexualist infiltrators in the 1960s. The Traditional Latin Mass parishes, and those priests, religious and laity who pray the Latin Mass will remain faithful to Our Lord, will go underground, and will eventually be hunted, imprisoned and killed.
This is the latest iteration:
This is why I fear that there will be a quiet schism in the Church, and that it will happen soon. Dolan and his politicking bovine excrement is going to lead the Church in the United States off the edge of the cliff in the name of “compromise” and “tolerant dialog”, and in doing so will render the Church no longer in union with the Chair of Peter, and thus no longer Catholic. Once that apostolic break is made, the churches that go with Dolan will no longer have valid Masses and the Eucharist will not be present in those churches. At that point, there will literally only be a few hundred valid Masses celebrated in the entire United States per week. Many people will be many, many hours drive away from the closest Mass. Satan will run wild in the land.
Now, what’s odd about this is that a while back Ann was warning her readers about Donatism. But here she is making a Donatist argument: that churches that roll over and pay for Obamacare will not confect a valid Eucharist. WTF? (“What’s that, Father?”) As long as there’s a valid apostolic succession, the proper words and the proper material, it’s good. Now, I partially buy her argument about informal schism. It takes a certain seriousness about the faith to do Latin Mass, and in my experience, the EF community is more serious about doctrine…which is not necessarily to say that the OF community are bad Catholics, but if push comes to shove, more are likely to roll over. What makes this less likely, and what I think will be the salvation of the faith, is the new Catholic media, which is by and large doctrinally conservative, and which has take on the job that priests don’t want to do: catechesis. You’ve got folks watching EWTN and listening to Catholic radio, and reading the Catholic blogosphere (and it might just be my sources, but I seldom come across a liberal Catholic blog) … and what they’re seeing is that their priests need some encouragement, so they’re doing the encouraging (even when it means dropping a dime to the Bishop).
There have been times in the Church’s history where survival of the Magisterium was very tenuous. In the early days, being elected Pope was equivalent to a death sentence. Then you had the Babylonian Captivity of the late-14th century, where at one point there were THREE rival Popes. Now, are you sure that all the Ts were crossed in your priest’s line of apostolic succession? Or do you assume that whatever needed fixed got fixed? For that matter, if Europe turned on Christianity, it could well be that the Bishop of Rome was no longer the Pope (because a bishop would no longer be allowed to LIVE in Rome). The Church and its Magisterium will continue, somewhere, in the jungles of Africa if need be. It’s altogether possible that someday we’ll look at slacker priests and choirs singing David Haas, and think of “the good old days” when there actually were priests and music. And with that bit of conjecture, I’d like to steal Ann’s prayer:
Please, please, please let Jeffrey Quick be totally and completely wrong and make him eat crow by the bucketful every day for the rest of his life.
UPDATE 2/22. Looking at her latest, I’ve decided that Barnhardt’s intellectual blind spot is her absolutism. She posts a homily by Fr. Sammie L Maletta Jr. about the HHS mandate, and then says, “He starts out pretty well, gets his hellfire and brimstone on a little – which is good. But then at the very, very end, proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that he JUST. DOESN’T. GET. IT. The man is totally, completely and thoroughly whipped.” What constitutes “whipped”? Saying, “Obama, let us be Catholics!” She’s right, of course, that there’s no “let” about it; her point about always being free to do God’s will is solid. But…this guy did a whole homily! Most of us just got the reading of the bishop’s letter. He faced the strong possibility of being kicked around by his congregants. Do the times demand more? Surely. Is this guy actually ahead of the curve? From what I’ve heard and seen, I suspect so. But Ann is very “He who is not for me is against me,” (MAtt. 12:30) and I don’t think she has the rank to make such a statement.