Sunday, 16 March 2014

'Operation Shock and Awe' to Accomplish Liberal Hegemony over the Church?

A while has passed now since Deacon Nick Donnelly's excellent Protect the Pope blog came under censure.

Recently, it has been confirmed that the Bishop of Lancaster, we assume due to a number of 'complaints' from certain quarters, felt compelled to ask Deacon Nick Donnelly to refrain from his involvement on Protect the Pope - a hugely successful and very widely read blog - in order to take some time out, the completion of which is not specified, to 'prayerfully reflect'.

Ches at The Sensible Bond has some interesting thoughts on the astonishing development while Fr Tim Finigan of The Hermeneutic of Continuity has rightly drawn his reader's attention to what seems to indicate the application of a rather grotesque set of double standards at work in the modern Church with regard to who is free to communicate in the Church of the 21st century and who has their freedom to communicate restricted.

Of course, unlike many Catholics present in both the mass media and courting their readers through the new media, Nick Donnelly was and remains 100% in agreement with all that the Church teaches, giving assent to the Magisterium and teaching quite masterfully it to others online.

Others who do the precise opposite of this, who through writing and public speaking seek to undermine the Catholic Church in Her teaching enjoy considerable freedom, tolerance and even promotion in England and Wales. As Fr Tim has noted and dutifully explained, the level of promotion that dissent to the Church's Magisterium is so inexplicably high, that the website of the very Bishop who has suppressed Nick Donnelly promotes The Tablet in its 'Latest News' section.

While The Tablet is fully able to communicate Catholic news in an objective manner, the dissenting opinions of its editorial team are by now the stuff of legend. There has been some commentary suggesting that the Bishop has asked Nick Donnelly to cease from blogging for an undetermined amount of time because he has received complaints. It is well-known that Deacon Nick's work in revealing the collusion of priests and bishops in England and Wales with ACTA - a dissenting group of Catholics who seek to change Church teaching on sexual morality, priestly celibacy and the ordination of women - will have made him some powerful enemies.

 The Diocese of Lancaster's website on 15 March 2014
For a Bishop's website to be promoting The Tablet, an international weekly vehicle for dissent, is disappointing in itself, but the actual article that the Diocese of Lancaster promotes in its 'Latest News' section contains the following passage on two Bishops, one in Wales, one in England, who have 'broken ranks' with the Bishops' Conference on issues that will be discussed at the upcoming Synod on the Family...

'Two bishops of England and Wales have broken ranks with their confreres with one calling for developments in church teaching on human sexuality and the other criticising the collective decision not to publish the findings of a Vatican survey.

The Bishop of Middlesbrough, Terence Drainey, called for a “radical re-examination of human sexuality” that could lead to a development in church teaching in areas such as contraception, homosexuality, divorce and remarriage and cohabitation and the role of women in the Church.  
Bishop Tom Burns of Menevia says that in the interests of transparency the bishops should publish the findings of a Vatican survey which asked questions on cohabitation, contraception and same-sex marriage. In an article for The Tablet, Bishop Burns notes “the height and depth and width of the intense pleas made by God’s people for urgent attention to their pastoral needs”.'

I highlight the word 'development' since it would appear that to 'develop' Catholic teaching in a particularly unpopular area of Catholic teaching is established liberal code for the undermining or abandoning of the teaching itself. If that is not the case, then why do such liberals never actually say what this 'development' would look like in practice? Liberals writing for The Tablet are constantly calling for 'development' of the Church's teaching on sexual matters. It is now the raison d'etre of The Tablet. Of course, it is scandalous that The Tablet's writing staff should undermine, in writing, the Church's teaching in any area and campaign for 'radical reform' of teachings that are inerrant and form part of the Church's infallible Magisterium. Yet it is even more scandalous that an article highlighting coded episcopal dissent from this Magisterium should appear on Bishop Campbell's 'newsfeed' on his website. The promotion of the article, in the wake of Fr Tim Finigan's blog post, appears now to have dropped down and off the 'Latest News Section' but can be viewed here.

The papal nuncio, the CDF and English and Welsh Bishops will have, I am certain, received numerous complaints through telephone, email and post concerning those teaching heterodox views in their Dioceses, numbered among whom are the writing team of The Tablet itself, which, despite its near constant undermining of Church teaching on a weekly basis, is for sale in every Cathedral and the vast majority of parishes in the United Kingdom.

Yet, as far as I am aware, no bishop, and certainly not Bishop Campbell has thought to urge The Tablet to show fidelity to the Church's Magisterium and the Bishops Conference of England and Wales continues to protect and support this weekly journal, granting immunity to those who obviously dissent from the Church's teachings.

In the light of Deacon Nick Donnelly's censuring by his bishop for airing views that are so obviously in total agreement with the Church's actual teachings, regularly referencing the Catechism of the Catholic Church in his posts, how can a bishop such as Bishop Michael Campbell not consider The Tablet's weekly criticism of the Church's teachings on sexual morality and other areas a cause for grave concern and an issue on which he and his brother bishops should take action as a matter of urgency? For they cannot say they have not received ample messages of complaint!

Press regulation: At least they had a public inquiry...
There is one rule for Deacon Nick Donnelly, it would seem, and another rule entirely for those who dissent from the Magisterium he heroically sought on his blog to uphold, defend and proclaim, along with the protection of the Guardian of the Deposit of Faith, His Holiness Pope Francis.

Have these two bishops highlighted by The Tablet really 'broken ranks' with their brother bishops? Or are the Bishops Conference seriously considering breaking ranks with Our Lord Jesus Christ? If Bishops are considering apostasy today, I pray that they will 'prayerfully reflect' on just what that means for them in Eternity.

We should all 'prayerfully reflect' on the Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ and what it cost Him to obtain for us our redemption and to purchase for us the gift of Salvation that we can so easily reject. A little Lenten reflection on the bloodied Corpse that was laid in the arms of Our Lady, Mother of the Church, might help the Bishops, and all of us, to 'develop' our relationship with God and 'deepen' our love for Jesus Christ. For without love for Our Lord Jesus Christ and His Blessed Mother, all of us, not just laity, but priests, bishops and yes, even popes are in danger of losing Him forever and forever sounds like an awfully long time. We know when the season of Lent ends and the season of Easter begins, but there is no such stopwatch in either Heaven or Hell.


Pétrus said...

Well said Laurence.

I go to bed hoping the Church develops an inquisition of an Iberian nature involving The Tablet.

Bernadette said...

Well said, excellent post.

Left-footer said...

A fine article, commendable for both its reasoning and its restraint.

God bless.

Fr Mark said...

Both Pope Paul VI and Cardinal Ratzinger wrote articles for The Tablet, you can't say that about Protect the Pope!

Jacobi said...

Pope Benedict, a sensible man, rightly encourage responsible internet techniques i.e., blogging, amongst others.

I strongly suspect that if the internet had been available, then Belloc would have been a very active and successful blogger - right now on the subject of what he called The Modern Phase, “We approach the greatest moment of all”.

Also Chesterton, although whether or not he would have been able to master the keyboard, I not so sure.

Nicolas Bellord said...

Fr Mark: In the days of Pope Paul VI the Tablet was still a respectable Catholic paper. No doubt Cardinal Ratzinger hoped to lend it a bit of orthodoxy.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for continuing to hold to the truth of the Faith and morals, to reason. Many have been corrupted. The urgent attention that the faithful or unfaithful need is to be taught, governed and sanctified by their bishops and priests, in accordance with the unchanging Faith and morals, leading them to repentance for sins and reconversion to God and His Holy Church. One of the biggest factors in the destruction of the Faith and obedience among Bishops and priests is the evil of homosexuality, contrived in dissident seminaries. Without God, without the truth, we have nothing but diabolical chaos.

Liam Ronan said...

These ever-accelerating plots and infamies against the Faith remind me of the quasi-prophetic line from the BBC's adaptation of Grave's "I, Claudius":

"Claudius: Let all the poisons that lurk in the mud hatch out."

Lepanto said...

I was listening to Fr. Barron recently saying that when he was a young priest a very old wise priest told him that, when a priest or bishop spoke against Church teaching, it was ALWAYS because of unresolved sin in their own lives and it was usually sexual. When Fr. Barron queried the use of the word 'always', the old priest repeated it. Fr. Barron said that he had never had reason to doubt the old priest's words. So these bishops are (if the old priest was right) signalling very clearly that they have serious personal problems.

Martina Katholik said...

“Others who do the precise opposite of this, who through writing and public speaking seek to undermine the Catholic Church in Her teaching enjoy considerable freedom, tolerance and even promotion in England and Wales.”

Not only in England and Wales, but also Germany!

One of those is Kardinal Kasper who denied as a professor ( of dogmatic theology!) Jesus Christ´s nature miracles. With this public denial he could become Bishop under Pope John Paul II and Card. Ratzinger as Prefect of the Doctrine of the Faith.

He also denied in his book "Jesus Christus" the resurrection of Christ from the dead which was according ot him no "historical reality" and is now praised by Pope Francis to the skies because he wants to give in the name of "mercy" holy communion to public adulterers, nowadays called "remarried divorcees".

I guess one must have been an assistant of Hans Küng (Kasper was one of them) and then you can become a real careerist (of course not one like those who only want to follow "small-minded rules" and who desire "an exaggerated doctrinal security", you know).

Martina Katholik said...

I forgot to mention Card. Marx, another famous German non-careerist who attacks Catholic Church Teaching whenever possible.
Last year Cardinal Marx said that it is not possible to insult God at all during a so called “blasphemy controversial” and the discussion if Germany needs a law that forbids blasphemy. He said that such a law could therefore only protect the feelings of the believers of every religion.–gott-kann-man-gar-nicht-beleidigen-,15184890,16800970.html
Back then I asked myself what in his opinion is the reason why we don´t live anymore in the Garden of Eden and wondered if he had ever heard of Anselm of Canterbury´s “Cur Deus Homo” (Why God became man).
Another member of the Group of 8 Cardinals makes the news – Church must “repent of scaremongering hell,” according to Cardinal Marx

Nicolas Bellord said...

Martina: I think Cardinal Mark has merely been taken on by the devil to advertise hell as being really rather a nice place in the hope that more will choose to go there.

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