Do I Hear Cardinal Cordileone?

For those of you who don’t know, the American bishops got together last week in St. Louis for their Bishops’ Spring General Assembly.  Not too many news stories came out of it, but they provided a nice little hashtag where you can see what some of them have to say on Twitter: #usccb15.  As I read through some of the stuff that’s come out of it, I have to think that most of them, not all, are trying to put the cart before the horse.

In the meeting, they discussed things like racism a la Ferguson.  They discussed immigration reform.  They discussed protecting victims of clergy abuse.  They discussed making the poor their top priority.  They discussed the Pope’s environmental encyclical (although I can’t for the life of me figure out why Catholics can’t just wait for it to come out before there’s a discussion).  All the while the voice screaming in the back of my head is saying, “YOU JUST DON’T GET IT!!!“

How do you guys think you’re going to make headway in any of these areas when you can’t even get a good portion of your flocks to understand that Catholicism is not a nationality?  Your flocks like the nostalgia, but they simply don’t believe in it anymore!  The pews are empty!  You can’t even get them for an hour on Sunday to fulfill their Sunday obligation much less to follow other teachings of the Church.  When they do occasionally attend, you’re not even teaching them what a sacrilege it is to receive Our Lord without confession.  There’s no belief in the Real Presence.  Their whole focus in life is what makes them happy here and now, and they don’t give a thought to eternity. Take a look around!  This is where you need to start, gentlemen!  Of course, nobody is going to care about the poor, respect life, or respect their fellow human beings when they don’t even attend your churches except on Christmas and Easter.  As an organization, this is kind of your fault!

Rather than focusing on the goal of saving the world, you, first and foremost, need to start by saving the souls in the churches of your dioceses.  That’s really the only way you’re going to save the rest of the world.  If you think the 250 of you can achieve anything without way more of your flock than you have now, good luck. You need to stop talking about all these noble causes (and they are noble) because the reality is, they don’t care beyond their narcissistic selves.  They need to first understand that there is a God and an afterlife and it’s going to last a long time, along with about a thousand other things.  This is the only way we’re going to revive the army to really make a difference in the world.

Of course, there are exceptions to every rule.  There are some parishes, dioceses, cardinals, bishops, priests, etc. that are Catholic bastions – not nearly enough but it’s looking brighter every day.  Some of the members of the USCCB are positively wonderful, and we’re starting to see more and more every week who are stepping up to explain what the heck Catholicism is.  They are explaining to their priests, their seminarians, and their flocks that eternal salvation depends on them actually being Catholic with a capital “C”.  They are no longer letting cafeteria Catholicism fly.

The latest joining in the chorus was Bishop Edward Slattery of Tulsa, OK.  His decision to disassociate from the Oklahoma Center for Community and Justice for sponsoring a “gay pride” parade was right on the money, but what he said about it was so simple and yet oh so important!  What did he say that was so poignant?  He said, “I’m the bishop, and I have to be the bishop.”  I’m not entirely sure how that got missed for 30 years by, conservatively, at least half of our bishops, but I’m thrilled that this foreign logic seems to be catching on amongst our spiritual leaders – cardinals on down to priests.  It’s about time!  Maybe they missed it because they’ve spent so much time trying to accomplish what seems to be the loftier goals.  We need the basics now.  We need our bishops to be bishops, not superheroes.

This brings me around to my favorite – Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone. While there seems to be a lot of platitudes and lofty goals coming out of the USCCB, Archbishop Cordileone is addressing a very real situation.  Who knows what the Supreme Court will do regarding marriage?  Regardless of their decision, we must make the Catholic decision, despite the fact that it’s going to come at some cost. The USCCB really needs to bring us around to authentic Catholicism and make us understand that there will be a price to pay for it.  We’ve been promised no less, right?  The Archbishop is a living example of what we have to look forward to when we choose Christ.  We’re going to be the targets of lies.  We’re going to be threatened.  We’re going to suffer verbal abuse.  It’s far less epic than hiding in the catacombs, but very painful nonetheless, especially because, in many cases, it’s going to come from some modern-day Judases who claim to be our Catholic brethren, and even our some of our bishops.

While some are petitioning the Holy Father for the removal of Archbishop Cordileone, I’d like to use this humble forum to ask that the Holy Father make Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone the first Cardinal of San Francisco!  Make no mistake, I do not wish Archbishop Cordileone to be whisked off to some lofty job in the Holy See.  The United States needs him right where he is to bolster his fellow cardinals and bishops for the long road ahead.  We’re being persecuted big-time here, dear Holy Father, and we need a man of courage to be elevated for his leadership and convictions, and all need to understand he is espousing the teachings of the Holy Catholic Church.  The Archbishop has done nothing more than to echo you.  Despite the spin, he has done it in a most humble and loving way.  While I might be inclined to say, “Off with their heads,” he has repeatedly gone back to his wayward flock and lovingly taught, taught, and taught some more.  Whenever I mention my wish for a Cardinal Cordileone, I am often told, “That will never happen.”  Well, Holy Father, you have made your pontificate about doing things out of the norm and a Cardinal Cordileone would be in keeping with your bold pontificate.  Please consider my humble request (yes I do realize I just asked the Holy Father to do something but you can’t get if you don’t ask) which I believe could save the Church in the United States from the wasteland of “Catholics in name only” that we’ve become I know I’m not even close to being alone in this request.  The faithful want, no, we NEED, that extra validation of someone so visibly willing to be crucified for Christ’s Church.  The rest of the laity could use that too.


23 thoughts on “Do I Hear Cardinal Cordileone?

  1. “Cardinal Cordileone” has a nice ring to it, OMM!

    Thanks for your honesty about the ‘wasteland of Catholics in name only’. I’ve heard clergy talk about the faithful ‘not having a clue’. They recognize this, but seem afraid to confront and teach. An example of courage in the American hierarchy would surely be an inspiration!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. OMM,

    I for one am very glad to see you broaden your scope of your column beyond San Francisco. IMHO, you’re are a well-educated, articulate, apostolic Catholic woman with a voice that hits the just the right notes. Currently I am pursuing a degree in Scripture studies and after a time I have noticed that virtually all the women who are in the field are doing studies such as, “The women of Corinth,” “Women in the early Church,” “Was Abraham misogynist?. . .etc, etc. ” After a while you get the idea. It reminds me of a passage from The Chronicles of Narnia where the dwarfs are asked to join forces in a battle for good, and the leader of the dwarfs says, “The dwarfs are for the dwarfs.” That is why I find your column such a breath of fresh air. You are a voice not just for women, but for the Church, and it is a womanly voice. It is badly, badly needed.

    Regarding this column. You spoke of the empty pews. It reminded me of a sermon at a very prominent parish here in Portland a few years ago, where the pastor speaking to a church that was four fifths empty reminisced about how gloomy was the church before Vatican II. I wanted to remonstrate with him, but when someone can say that he is so far gone that it seemed useless. The churches of his youth and mine ( we are both about 70) was full at every Mass. if you came late, you could not get a seat and the ushers would go up and down the aisle trying to find a place to squeeze you in. The pulpit, admittedly, was a fountain of vinegar, and we heard a lot about occasions of sin, hell, actual grace, sanctifying grace, getting to Confession, etc. It was just what we needed. At the creed I remember how impressed I was by everyone genuflecting at ” et incarnatus est.” We were a holy, disciplined, faithful people. AND, it was not “gloomy.”

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I am the last person that would notice syntax. Thanks for your comments!

      I, eventually, will branch out more into other parts of the country/world. That said, I’m focusing on SF right now because I see it as crucial to the country at large. The other reason is that if I entertain places like Germany, I’d never set down my keyboard! Way too much material!


    2. About the empty churchs in the ‘dismal” days before Vatican II. I went back to a parish I attended in my youth, before Vatican II a few summers ago. There used to be a full schedule of Masses in both the upper church and the lower church every Sunday. The pews were full of moderately large sized families (maybe four children max). There was a thriving school. Everyone dressed appropriately. Now the parish has one Mass every Sunday, one on Sat. in a nearby parish. The pews were maybe 1/10th full. A pushy deacon came up when I entered the church with my beautiful niece who was dressed inappropriately to my mind in short shorts and a sleevelss top. He almost ran me over to greet her. That kind of behavior would not have happened pre Vatican II. Whatever the complex reasons behind this change, it looked as if the church had drunk the Kool aid of let’s open the church to the world, and is just barely alive in this and in many other places.


  3. Of course he should be elevated to Cardinal…but only if we get to keep him!

    Sorry. I admit to being selfish. Okay, whatever Holy Mother Church decides.

    I am so glad to see other bishops speaking out. We have to let them know that we support them! We are the quiet people who are in the pews every Sunday–we need to be more vocal.

    There seem to be things going on very quietly behind the scenes (I have no direct knowledge but I have this feeling)…let those things keep happening quietly. But when we see something good making the news we need to speak up affirmatively!

    Keep on bloggin’ Mad Mom!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I second the motion to make the Archbishop a Cardinal. As usual OMM you are on top of your game with this blog. Keep up the good work. We will all pray that it enlightens those catholics-in-name only, people to come back to the real faith of there Lord and Savour Jesus Christ. Thank you, thank you and may God Bless and Protect you and you family.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. The good Archbishop Cordileone will probably be going the way of the other good Bishops Finn and Neinstadt before long and then possible the good Bishop Morlino.. I would be very careful in praising Archbishop Cordileone to the Vatican these day, for their good and for the good of the truly Faithful flock.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. We need some organization for this positivity and noisiness.

        Blogs, letters-to-the-editor, calls to action, prayer rallies, social media blitzes…and best of all, Eucharistic processions. In public.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. “Do some research before you decide to judge.”

    Well played, OMM. (LOL!) Another excellent entry.

    You know, even though I am in my mid 50’s, I have experienced some of the “gloom” of the pre-Vatican II days. In my location, the Midwest, the nonsense really did not set in here until shortly after 1970.

    I experienced, as a first grader in a very strict Catholic school, some of the… um, how-shall-I-say-it?, lack of charity by some of the sisters who ran the school.

    Picture this: a six year old finds a dime on the floor of his homeroom. He picks it up and puts it in his pocket. Suddenly a classmate says that it is his dime and asks for it. The first refuses to give it to him. The classmate says something to the teacher. The teacher confronts the first boy and, voila!, its off the principal’s office! Then it is as if the gates of hell are unleashed. (in a six year old’s eyes, anyway)

    Later the sister-teacher comes to the six-year-old’s home and tells his non-Catholic mother that he is going to hell because he stole a dime from a classmate. (what a great impression that made)

    Now, did this run me off from Holy Mother Church? No. The main reason is because I was not really a Catholic at the time (marriage issues, you see). My siblings and I were not going through any kind of sacramental prep because of said issues. Too many details to give here.

    Fast forward some thirty years later. I am a proud, fired-up Catholic man who has a wonderful wife and five great homeschooled children! :^)

    The moral of this story? (sorry for the length)

    The sins (or supposed sins) of the sons and daughters of Holy Mother Church have nothing to do with what she, and her Founder, teaches. The Truth is the Truth and He does not change. Neither does/can the Church change the Truth. She is to uphold and protect it. (see 1 Tim. 3:15, Eph. 3:10)

    I thank the Lord for His unchanging doctrines which lead souls to salvation. Otherwise I would have still been on my merry way to perdition.

    God love you, OMM!

    Catechist Kev

    Liked by 1 person

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