In Defense of My Trad Friends…

You know, I wasn’t going to say anything about Zita Ballinger Fletcher’s article, and I’m not going to give her the pleasure of linking to it (if you didn’t see, do yourself a favor and don’t bother), but I am going to say a few things after watching the fallout from it today.

I did make two tweets back to Ms. Fletcher in response to some of her tweets, so to avoid any “she said she said”, here are my super mean tweets for your reading enjoyment.

I haven’t said 1 word to u or about u but, I’ve read your piece, and this would seem to be the pot calling the kettle black. So, if you don’t like being slandered, poked fun of, personally attacked, blamed, etc., maybe don’t write a piece doing that to a whole group of people?

And after relaying what a martyr she was but how she doesn’t retaliate because she’s a Real Catholic:

I’ve never really understood the charge of “virtue signalling” but I think this was big help.

Of course, she couldn’t ban me fast enough because, heaven forbid, she defends her rant, but here are some thoughts on it:

First, I don’t go to the Extraordinary Form of the Mass on a regular basis, so I feel like I’m in a unique position to comment on this article.  Nobody can point at me and say “Just another mean ol’ trad! She has to say that!”

Next, sorry, I have yet to attend any parish that doesn’t have its own breed of holier-than-thou people who think their way of “Catholic” is the only way of “Catholic”, whether it be the local happy-clappy church down the street or the local FSSP church. The Church is made up of sinners. I have Extraordinary friends who would like to whack some of their fellow parishioners upside the head just like I do some days. I mean, seriously, after the rant yesterday and the follow up on Twitter today, I just can’t see that she can say a thing about any of this after that snide piece. It was just full of hypocrisy.

Could Miss Fletcher have written her article after repeatedly stumbling into the worst of the worst weirdos in all of Extraordinary-land who couldn’t cogently answer “Why the veil?” or who simply ignored the Mass to sneer at her or ran up and tried to sign her up for “the cult”?  Anything is possible, but my guess is that her tales are a tad bit hyperbolic and based on the very thing she accuses them of – being judgmental. They don’t agree with her, they’re gaining ground, so she’s going to make them look as bad as she possibly can.

So, back to my experience, when I can’t get to my very lovely Ordinary Form Mass on Sunday, I go to the local church who hosts the Extraordinary Form. I’ve also been to various other EF’s for one reason or another, and her supposed experiences (and this really is all I can say about them) are far from the norm. I’ve never once been told to put on a veil or been sneered at because I’m not dressed just so. In fact, I ran to one at the last second (child was in hospital) and was probably wearing pants, but nobody looked twice. Maybe I just don’t go to Mass and look around at who’s looking at me. I don’t know. I pretty much get the feeling that we’re all just there to go to Mass. Sure, we can get distracted by the people around us, but I think the general theme is “I’m here to adore the Lord.” I still get the impression that Zita thinks all people are supposed to be looking at her and adoring her every fashion choice, and her article had all the indications of that narcissism. When she said “leggings” I thought, yeah, I probably would have been annoyed to be subjected to that, too. If you’re going to veil, not veil, wear leggings, wear something a little more long, etc., somebody is probably going to judge you either way. Deal. Not like you’re being hung on the Cross, for Heaven’s sake. On the occasion it happens, turn the other cheek and pay attention to the Mass.

Oh, and as a strong-willed woman, I also found her insinuation that all women who attend the Extraordinary Form Mass are simply being controlled by men was, well, stupid.  Did you catch the part about her friend who started wearing a veil? Ms. Fletcher basically said she caved into peer pressure. Please. Did she ever think for a moment that her friend might have been compelled by the arguments given for veiling? Geez. And how about the idea that somehow veiling is only a trad thing. How does she explain the ladies sitting at the local ordinary parish wearing a veil?  So, yeah, people are indeed going to say she doesn’t know because she doesn’t. And, by the way, Ms. Fletcher, Google “veiling”. I find it ridiculous to think that you’ve only heard the silly argument you tried to put forth when there are numerous in-depth articles on the subject. Again, she’d be hard-pressed to point at me and say, “She’s one of the them!” because I’m not. I have many female friends who attend the Extraordinary Form Mass, and there are very few who I’d consider pushovers, nor do they even all look the same. I just about died when I saw Zita say something about earrings. Honestly, unless she wandered into a Pius V chapel, I can’t imagine a place where everyone’s in a floor length dress, no earrings, etc. Heck, I’ve even seen tattoos (not plugging those, just sayin’), so the portrait she tries to paint doesn’t hold true. She needs to take a good hard look at her article one more time, because the only “oppression” going on surrounding the “Latin Mass” is from people like her.

I’d love to ask Zita how she thought her screed would help the situation? Let’s just say she’s right (which she’s not). Doesn’t she think that this might further drive people to the imaginary bunker? Of course, people are going to be defensive at their fellow parishioners and priests being labeled cultish, and of course they’re going to say she doesn’t have a clue. Instead of thoughtful debate and dialogue (you know the thing that’s supposed to be the bomb unless it’s with a trad), I was just being subjected to watching the usual “I’m a martyr” tweets from her. Completely predictable. I suppose a millennial like her thinks that the world is just going to hand her a trophy, but at twenty-eight years old, she should be old enough to realize that there couldn’t be a positive outcome to an article like hers. She didn’t do it out of some loving move to save the Church, she just did it to poke a bear.

Of course, NcR is full of Zitas. It’s like watching all of the protestant churches who could be trying to lead souls to Christ in their own deficient way but every sermon turns out to be “The Catholic Church is so evil!” They have no game so all they can do is to cast aspersion on others. They can’t debate facts. All they can do is come up with unverifiable conjectures to try and make people as paranoid as them. This is why people are attracted to traditional parishes (not with a big “T”) in general. They want to hear how to be a better Catholic. They want to hear the teachings that go along with the readings for the Sunday. They want to be helped to heaven. Sadly, the liberals can’t fill that craving and people looking for faithful Catholicism in its many forms is growing. So they can keep trotting out their usual dog and pony show of stories about how somebody was so mean to someone else and they’re all like that and they’ll do the same to you but eventually people realize that dog has no bark.

Let me give you one last tip, Zita. Toughen up. You made a public statement and you got a public response. This does not a martyr make. If you can’t make public statements without being willing to take the criticism, do yourself a favor and get out of the op-ed business. It’s not the place for fragile snowflakes who can’t take disagreement. People criticize me all the time, but I don’t think I’ve banned a single person for it unless they got profane or downright crass, since that’s not exactly helpful for a good discussion. I don’t suppose, however, that’s exactly what you were looking for in the first place.



The Martin Chronicles

Should I make this the new name for the blog?  I really never intended on him being a main focus but now that he’s made it to the Vatican, I’m feeling like it’s all Martin all the time.  It’s like he thought the job description was to communicate himself.  I long for the “Who in the heck is Fr. James Martin, SJ?” days to return.

Here is my dose of irony for the day!

Homosexual clergy should ‘come out’ to show how ‘gay people can live chastely’: Vatican consultant

July 7, 2017 (LifeSiteNews) — The Vatican’s hand-picked pro-homosexual communications consultant Fr. James Martin said parish priests who secretly identify as homosexual should publicly “come out” to show their congregations “what a gay person is like and, incidentally, how gay people can live chastely.”

So, the first thought that popped into my head was “You first, Fr. Martin!  You first!”  Relatively sure I’m not alone in that guess.

Next, I’m wondering why a priest has to “come out” in order to tell people how they can live chastely.  I don’t remember anyone saying “I’m straight!  You too can be chaste!”  In fact, I’m missing the many teachings of Fr. Martin on chastity.  Did he write a book on that one?  All I could find in a cursory search was a whole chapter in a book he wrote, “Building a Bridge”.  Here are quotes and main takeaways, courtesy of Catholic Match (kind of disappointed in them on this one, though):

In an interview with the National Catholic Register, Fr. Martin gave his reasoning about why he doesn’t mention chastity in his book:

Register: In your book, you stress what the Catechism says about treating “LGBT” Catholics with “respect, compassion and sensitivity,” but not the teaching about living chastely. How long does one employ “respect, compassion and sensitivity” before calling “LGBT” Catholics to chastity?

Martin: The reason I didn’t talk about chastity in my book is because Church teaching is clear on that matter, and it’s well-known in the “LGBT” community. I don’t think there’s any “LGBT” Catholic alive who doesn’t understand that teaching. By the same token, there seem to be few “LGBT” Catholics who have accepted that teaching. Theologically speaking, you could say the teaching has not been “received” by the “LGBT” community, to whom it was directed. So rather than focusing on a topic where the two groups — the institutional church and the “LGBT” community — are miles and miles apart, I preferred to try to build a bridge over areas that could be places of common ground. And as for “respect, compassion and sensitivity,” one can always employ those virtues even when one is in disagreement with the other person. If you’re a bishop who is speaking to an “LGBT” person who disagrees with Church teaching, you can still treat him or her with respect, and the “LGBT” person can do the same with the bishop. As for calling them specifically to chastity, it’s important to remember we are all called to chastity, so that is part of everyone’s call as a Christian and as a Catholic. So that virtue is not something that applies only to the “LGBT” person.

So why then do priests have to “come out” to teach anyone how to live chastely? After all, “Church teaching is clear on that matter”, and there isn’t “any “LGBT” Catholic alive who doesn’t understand that teaching”. Heck, it is so well understood that it’s not included in your oh-so-important book.  Puh-lease!  Make up your mind, Fr. Martin.

That said, I’m not entirely sure that he fully understands the Catholic teaching on chastity that apparently everyone else has got down.  If he did, I’d think he’d use words like “self-mastery”, “sin”, etc. Maybe this will help.

Before we go onto the rest of Martin’s musings, let me tell you a little story.

A long time ago, in a diocese far, far away…Actually, not so far away, but way back when we had a liberally, permissive bishop, he allowed his cronies to have a support day for “gay priests.”  The obvious guys were there, but a couple priests who showed were puzzling.  One of these priests was (and still is) a very faithful, humble priest.  He got up and asked a very poignant question.  He said, “Why do you want to label yourself a ‘gay priest’ instead of a faithful priest?”  BAM!  I think it was his loving way of saying, “What are you dooooiiinnngggg???”  Personally, I don’t need or want to know who my priest is attracted to, unless it is Jesus, Our Lady, and the Saints.  I want him to guide me in leading a life that will lead me to an everlasting life with God.  I mean, is Fr. Martin saying that only priests that “come out” can help same-sex attracted folks live a chaste life?  Sorry, I know same-sex attracted people who were helped to live chaste lives by priests who they will never know to whom they are attracted.  It’s not about the priest.  It’s about the penitent and the wonderful sacraments and teachings the Church has to offer to help them be chaste.  It’s about priests knowing how to encourage people to live virtuous lives no matter what their sin.  For this particular issue, priests can foster Courage and Encourage groups, and quite frankly, they can just foster a family atmosphere where there are people helping people with their daily struggles against sin.

Sadly, I think Fr. Martin just wants to foster an environment that allows him to do whatever the heck he wants to do without guilt, and he’d like to drag a whole bunch of people down with him.  His goal is to foster the “We’re all just sinners, so let’s not worry about that anymore.  You’re nice, I’m nice, and we’re happy in our sins!” environment.  And guess what kind of things happen when people act that way…

Martin’s July 6 interview with CNN ironically comes about a week after news broke of the arrest of a Vatican gay-priest, Monsignor Luigi Capozzi, who frequently hosted cocaine-fueled homosexual orgies in a building right next to St. Peter’s Basilica.

BTW, the same clergy who are all too willing to report (or rather, shout out gleefully) when someone like Cardinal Pell is prosecuted are somehow super quiet about this little event.  I mean, it’s like they’re just ignoring the story all together.  Go to America Magazine, Salt and Light Media, or the National catholic Fishwrap.  I just did.  Search Coccopalmerio or Capozzi.  Cricket!  Cricket!  I mean, the silence deafening!

In the interview, the Jesuit priest and editor-at-large of America magazine spoke about his new pro-homosexual book Building a Bridge. He said the Church is beginning to shift its “approach” to homosexuals, thanks to Pope Francis.

There are two reasons for this shift. One is Pope Francis. His saying ‘Who am I to judge?’ about gay people; his public meeting with Yayo Grassi, his former student who is gay, during his papal visit to the United States; his comments in Amoris Laetitia [which have been used to allow practicing homosexuals to receive Communion]. And the bishops who Pope Francis is appointing in the United States are much more LGBT friendly,” he said.

What in the @#$%&!?  Seriously???  He’s still trying to float this crud to the uninformed and pass it off as truth??  Please, people!  Look it up yourself.  There is no different approach in the Holy Father’s comments.  It’s kind of what MY peeps have been saying all along.  If you are repentant, the Lord forgives!  Geez!  Here are the EXACT words from that part of the interview.  I’m not trying to hide it like Fr. Martin is.  I’ll even include the link.  Does Fr. Martin do this when talking about “gay people” and “Who am I to judge?”

Ilze Scamparini:

I would like permission to ask a delicate question: another image that has been going around the world is that of Monsignor Ricca and the news about his private life. I would like to know, Your Holiness, what you intend to do about this? How are you confronting this issue and how does Your Holiness intend to confront the whole question of the gay lobby?

Pope Francis:

About Monsignor Ricca: I did what canon law calls for, that is a preliminary investigation. And from this investigation, there was nothing of what had been alleged. We did not find anything of that. This is the response. But I wish to add something else: I see that many times in the Church, over and above this case, but including this case, people search for “sins from youth”, for example, and then publish them. They are not crimes, right? Crimes are something different: the abuse of minors is a crime. No, sins. But if a person, whether it be a lay person, a priest or a religious sister, commits a sin and then converts, the Lord forgives, and when the Lord forgives, the Lord forgets and this is very important for our lives. When we confess our sins and we truly say, “I have sinned in this”, the Lord forgets, and so we have no right not to forget, because otherwise we would run the risk of the Lord not forgetting our sins. That is a danger. This is important: a theology of sin. Many times I think of Saint Peter. He committed one of the worst sins, that is he denied Christ, and even with this sin they made him Pope. We have to think a great deal about that. But, returning to your question more concretely. In this case, I conducted the preliminary investigation and we didn’t find anything. This is the first question. Then, you spoke about the gay lobby. So much is written about the gay lobby. I still haven’t found anyone with an identity card in the Vatican with “gay” on it. They say there are some there. I believe that when you are dealing with such a person, you must distinguish between the fact of a person being gay and the fact of someone forming a lobby, because not all lobbies are good. This one is not good. If someone is gay and is searching for the Lord and has good will, then who am I to judge him? The Catechism of the Catholic Church explains this in a beautiful way, saying … wait a moment, how does it say it … it says: “no one should marginalize these people for this, they must be integrated into society”. The problem is not having this tendency, no, we must be brothers and sisters to one another, and there is this one and there is that one. The problem is in making a lobby of this tendency: a lobby of misers, a lobby of politicians, a lobby of masons, so many lobbies. For me, this is the greater problem. Thank you so much for asking this question. Many thanks.

Back to the LifeSiteNews article…

“The second thing is the increased number of LGBT Catholics who are coming out and making LGBT issues much more important for the church as a whole,” he added.

The interviewer asked Fr. Martin about his claim in his new book that there are “thousands” of homosexual clergy who have not “come out,” wanting to know why they keep their sexuality secret.

“Several reasons,” replied Martin. “One, their bishops or religious superiors ask them not to come out. Two, they fear reprisals from parishioners. Three, they fear it would be divisive. Four, they are private people. Five, they are not fully aware of their sexuality. And lastly, people have mistakenly conflated homosexuality and pedophilia, and so priests don’t want to come out because they fear they’ll be labeled a pedophile.”

Again, seriously?  Usually child molesters are called child molesters.  Can we focus a little on #4 for a second?  Yeah, many priests don’t talk about their sexual inclinations, sins, attractions, etc., because it’s simply, well, tacky and their vocation shouldn’t revolve around their sexual preference.  Gag!

Fr. Martin then agreed that it would make a “difference” in the Church if more homosexual clergy “came out.”

“It would help to show Catholics in the pews what a gay person is like and, incidentally, how gay people can live chastely. The great irony is that these men and women are living out exactly what the church asks of LGBT people — chastity and celibacy — and they are not allowed to talk about it. They are doing great work under a strange cloud that should not exist,” he said.

So these “gay people” are already living chaste and celibate lives, yet we need priests to “come out” to teach them how to be chaste and celibate?  Huh?  Which part of the Church has a problem with “gay people” who are faithful practicing Catholics who embrace the teachings of the Church, receive the sacraments, feed the homeless, etc., etc., etc.?  And, not allowed to talk about what?  Their lack of sex lives?  Look, we ALL struggle with sin.  If you feel the need to tell me you struggle with SSA, go ahead!  I’m here for you and maybe I can tell you how I work through my troubles with sin.  If you want to tell me that you engage in the active homosexual lifestyle and you’re still going to stroll up to Communion, we’re probably going to have a discussion about it.

But an additional reason why homosexual priests choose not to “come out” is given by famed Canadian Catholic laicized-priest Gregory Baum.

A peritus or expert at the Second Vatican Council, Baum wrote in his memoirs that he “did not profess my own homosexuality in public because such an act of honesty would have reduced my influence as a critical theologian.” While Baum kept his life of homosexual debauchery private, he managed to exert his influence over Canada’s bishops so that they dissented from the Church’s 1968 teaching in Humanae Vitae against contraception.

The interviewer did not ask Fr. Martin if he was himself homosexual.

Martin’s claim that priests don’t want to “come out” because of fear they will be labeled an abuser is not unfounded.

Research indicates that the abuse scandal within the Catholic Church primarily consisted of the homosexual abuse of males. A 2011 study commissioned by the U.S. Bishops and conducted by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice found that nearly 80 percent of victims who were abused by priests were post-pubescent and adolescent males. Dr. Richard Fitzgibbons, a top psychiatrist and expert in handling sexually abusive priests, said at the time that the study revealed that homosexuality was the primary driving force behind the bulk of abuse cases.

The Catholic Church only allows men into the priesthood who have “self-control and a well-integrated sexuality.” Last year, the Vatican’s Congregation for Clergy reaffirmed Catholic teaching that “those who practice homosexuality, present deep-seated homosexual tendencies or support the so-called ‘gay culture'” are not to be admitted to seminaries or be ordained Catholic priests.

So let me get this straight (no pun intended). The Church, run by a guy who says “Who am I to judge?”, is judging the suitability of a man to be a Catholic priest?  YOU BETCHA! That is judging the reality of a situation, not their immortal soul!

There are other examples beyond Capozzi and Baum that suggest that homosexual clergy are more like Judas than John when it comes to serving Christ and the Church he founded.

Honestly, I can’t say whether that’s true or not, because there might be SSA priests we don’t know about who are simply living out their vocations as faithfully as they can.  That said, the John Jay report does show a clear pattern of homosexual abuse, not pedophilia.  81% were male and something like 65-75% were postpubescent males.

For example, in 2015 a Polish priest and monsignor who worked at the Vatican for the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith demanded that the Church change her sexual teachings after going public with his homosexuality and sexual relationship with another man.

Using similar language and talking points employed by Fr. Martin, Monsignor Krzystof Charamsa said, among other things, that the Church should end its “language of homophobia … and rejection of LGBT people,” that it should “speak out against … any discrimination against people based on sexual orientation,” and that it should “revise the Catechism,” specifically the language used to speak of homosexual acts as “objectively disordered.”

So, is Msgr. Charasma living that chaste life? Not quite.  Sigh.  Pray for him.

While news of the cocaine-fueled homosexual orgies right next to St. Peter’s is shocking, it is not altogether unexpected.

In 2012, Polish priest Fr. Dariusz Oko released a paper in which he highlighted his discovery of what he called a “huge homosexual underground in the Church.”

“I began my work as a struggle against a deadly, external threat to Christianity, but then gradually discovered,” he said, that “the enemy is not only outside the Church, but within it, as well.”

Oko said homosexual cliques of clergy, even at the highest levels, are formed by fear of exposure, lust for power, and money.

Clique is the perfect terminology.  They are cliques of predators.

“They know well, however, that they may be exposed and embarrassed, so they shield one another by offering mutual support. They build informal relationships reminding [one] of a ‘clique’ or even ‘mafia,’ [and] aim at holding particularly those positions which offer power and money,” he wrote.

“When they achieve a decision-making position, they try to promote and advance mostly those whose nature is similar to theirs, or at least who are known to be too weak to oppose them. This way, leading positions in the Church may be held by people suffering from deep internal wounds,” he added.

Exactly! They are promoting and advancing the lie that the Church will change her teachings.

Oko said that once homosexual clergy achieve a “dominating position” in the Church’s hierarchy, the become a “backroom elite” with “tremendous power in deciding about important nominations and the whole life of the Church.”

I think he’s completely and utterly correct, and we’re seeing it now.

Among the rumors put forward at the time of Pope Benedict’s decision to resign in 2013 was the revelation of the existence of an entrenched “gay network” that orchestrated “sexual encounters” and shady financial machinations within the Vatican. The Pope reportedly decided to resign the day he received a 300-page dossier compiled by three cardinals detailing the workings and sexual activities of a network of homosexual curial officials.

Well, I don’t deal with conspiracy theories.  From what I understand from people who have personal relationships with him, this is not the case, although I’d hardly blame him if it were.  I think, however, he took the papacy a little more seriously than that.  For whatever reason, we are in the situation we are in.  Sadly, the Martin/Cupich/McElroy/Kasper (and on and on and on) contingent has won some battles.  Time for us to get a little more creative, if you ask me.