Benedict XVI has fundamentally altered something within Church and unleashed a set of movements within Her that adhere to the 'hermeneutic of continuity'. A new generation of younger Catholics have been - and will continue to be - exposed to the liturgical riches of the Church. Younger Catholics today are either Faithful or they are not Catholic at all. The wind is not blowing in the direction that The Tablet and an aging generation of Catholics followed.
It stand to reason then that in future, The Tablet will have to either change dramatically and be faithful to the Magisterium, or it will die. Every copy of The Tablet available now is a suicide note, because within 20 to 30 years, perhaps even sooner, a new generation of Priests and Bishops will refuse to have it sold in their parishes and Cathedrals. It will have to either regenerate itself and align itself with 'radical orthodoxy' or the average Catholic in the pew will have no time for it.
One senses in its recent mirth at the departure of Pope Benedict XVI the mocking of Christ by the Chief Priests and Pharisees at His Crucifixion. As Christ rose again, so will another Peter in the place of Pope Benedict XVI and they know not yet the identity of this figure. It could be someone who's identity alone will make grown men writing for The Tablet weep once more. It could be a new Pope who refuses to tolerate dissent in media organs that claim the title of 'Catholic'.
Whatever happens, I fail to see how any Tablet writer could not recognise that the Bitter Pill's days are numbered. The next generation of Priests and Bishops are very different to the current ones and this will be a trend that will likely continue. For a preview of the likely course of direction the Church is moving with the next generation, check out this video on the Dome of Home. I suspect The Tablet is not sold in New Brighton. I now know of quite a few parishes that refuse to sell the publication and the Bishops and the Priests of the future might well be so traditional that they dispense with cigarettes altogether and smoke pipes instead.
Happy Feast of the Chair of St Peter to one and all, especially to writers at The Tablet, who will understand the significance of this day in the Church's calendar and, most likely, loathe it. It's lack of understanding of the Catholic under a certain age, however, means that whether it is crushed, or dissolved, The Tablet's days are numbered.