As we look around the world and see the tremendous gains that evil has made — sodomite marriage being legalized in Ireland recently as a major example — we have to take a broader view of things to understand what has happened — a 30,000-foot-view, you might say.
From the 30,000-foot-view we can see that this great ascendancy of evil had to be expected. The divorce of the State from the Church, the twisted philosophical view of man, the distorted view of man himself as a totally free and liberated agent — these are just large principles of the evil that was to come when they were applied in the specific.
They resulted in an atmosphere being created where life would be centered around man, not God, where man is not only free to reject God (which has always been the case since Eden), but where that rejection was lifted up and applauded and enshrined in law as a natural good. From those rejections came further rejections and even further rejections. This has been the case since before the French Revolution, and has accelerated greatly in our day.
And it has all happened and been prepared for — for all these centuries — because the Church has failed in Her God-given mission of saving the world. And it is sad to say that much of that blame lies at the feet of the Church for not exercising Her authority to discipline errant sons. Too much of the evil in the world today is directly attributable to Catholics gone bad governed by a Church leadership too naïve to understand and comprehend the depth of evil present in the human heart.
From popes on down, for centuries, there has been too much leniency extended to traitorous sons of the Church, with the belief that not severely disciplining them is a form of mercy that would help bring them back in line. Too many times Rome has simply ignored serious grave problems in dioceses, religious orders, even the Curia itself.
Certainly it has from time to time addressed the problems in some public fashion and even at times taken some action, but even then there has not been sufficient follow-up to ensure that what was ordered was in fact executed. It has been the case that many leaders, again including popes, have not sufficiently understood the extent of the evil, and that may be owing to some degree to their own sweetness of soul. This kind of treachery with its resultant malice is hard to imagine or even conceive of in the heart or mind of one that is not suspecting of it owing to his own sweetness of character and soul. The average person cannot really think like a psychopathic murderer. We can’t look at the world like such a man does; we don’t even consider the prospect of dismembering a victim after slowly torturing them to death.
But if you’re going to track such people, you need to think like them, get inside their mind, as law enforcement would say. This is what many, many leaders in the Church for the past centuries have failed to do, or failed to do sufficiently.
Too many evil-minded people have been given a pass, or a mere slap on the wrist when public excommunication was actually called for considering the depth of their spiritual mischief. Catholic souls have been corrupted not only by other Catholics who are either malformed or vicious, but it has been allowed to happen by other leaders, bishops, cardinals, popes who have not been sufficiently vigilant in the face of horror.
Even in more recent times, consider the lack of vigilance and in some cases not just neglect but deliberate choices made by many bishops in the case of the homosexual priest sex abuse scandal. But even larger, think of the abhorrent lack of attention paid by leaders to the warping and malforming of the Faith that happens every day in parish religious education programs, RCIA classes, and Catholic schools that bishops either ignore, aren’t vigilant enough over or even in some cases support.
Think of the thousands upon thousands of homosexual men whom bishops have ordained and let loose on an unsuspecting laity. Think of these same men who have been elevated to the episcopate to be successors to the Apostles by a long string of popes who couldn’t imagine this kind of evil just below the surface.
The world has become so evil because the Church has become a failing Church, a Church that fails to correct error when it appears. The source of error is the diabolical, and that is why it must be attacked the moment it appears — attacked and rooted out.
Saint Alphonsus Ligouri even made the point that it may be fine to show mercy toward an individual errant soul, but when that display of mercy has the impact of harming other souls, then it is not good.
It is time for a total re-think, an entirely new approach to how bad Catholic leaders and Catholics in position of influence are dealt with. And this generation of leaders is not the ones to do this. While there are notable exceptions here and there, this current generation is largely part of the problem that needs addressing.
They are puffed up on their own imaginings of themselves, their own delusional self-importance. They are so far advanced down the road that they lack the ability to realize they are the problem. They reserve their discipline for anyone, priest or laity, who calls out their negligence or evil, but they would never dream of using that discipline when it comes to those in their jurisdiction who subvert the Faith. For the traitors, there is mercy. For the faithful, there is the rod.
The traitors get mercy because they are friends from former days in seminary, or they have a sweet political way about them, or to discipline some of them might create headaches for the bishop because the one who needs discipline is well connected or whatever. Leaders in the Church have developed a tradition in the past few centuries of not recognizing or sufficiently dealing with the traitors to the Faith.
It's time to realize that the mercy that needs to be shown is not to these people, but from these people. The faithful, as opposed to the unrepentant traitors, deserve mercy as well, the mercy that is owed to them to be freed from the scourge of unfaithful leaders and their malice and cowardice. Pray that Our Lord will send holy and wise men to correct this situation.
And a special message to seminarians out there: Do not be taken in by institutionalized attitudes and laid-back approaches being presented to you. Those prevailing attitudes and approaches being presented to you are precisely the reason the Church is in such travail. If you are not going to try and change that through your own holiness and understanding, then leave now, before you place your own soul and the souls of others in deep jeopardy of being damned.
Do not think that severe judgment does not await these men, past and present, who have brought the Bride of Christ to Her knees and made Her a mockery before the whole world. Take care that as you prepare for ordination, you resolve to never have a part in that, no matter what the circumstances. Never grow lax or complacent and run from the temptation to be negligent. Remember your first love and continue to live it.