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There are some people in the Church who appear to take a high road when it comes to saying anything about some of the bishops and the damage to the Faith that some of them cause. We say "appear to take the high road" because in private they say things without reservation and quite openly if the people hearing them are considered "safe" or "allies."
So what happens in this somewhat two-faced approach is a class system develops where those in the know whisper among themselves and others in the "in crowd," while those on the outside who do not have access to the privy information are left dangling, unsure why the Church is imploding. And when the gossiping class of clerics and their lay friends encounter other groups who openly talk about the damage and the causes, they excoriate them, and take to the blogs about the division they cause and lack of respect for the hierarchy and so forth.
But let's get real here. Many of those who slam the groups telling the truth and laying it out have a dog in the fight. They are priests or chancery staffers who are trying to feather their own nests and advance their own careers, pretending to be aghast that some bishops could be spoken of in such terms publicly, while they say even worse things privately.
"Don't speak that way," comes the warning. Don't speak of this bishop or that bishop saying or doing this or that inappropriate thing which scandalizes the faithful. In their self-serving world, it seems everyone must respect the office of the bishop, except the bishop himself. He gets a pass — at least in public. But again, in private he is lambasted by the very same people issuing the moral warnings about talking about members of the hierarchy.
That's why it was beyond refreshing a couple of weeks ago when His Eminence Cdl. Raymond Burke simply laid it out plain and simple in an address he gave to a throng of pro-lifers in Rome. He warned of what he termed a "man-centered perspective, especially in the Church." He warned further of the great degree of "secularization [which] has entered into the life of the Church Herself."
He talked about the great suffering these conditions are for the faithful Catholics and how "[t]he suffering is greatly increased by the betrayal of the ... Bishops, priests and consecrated religious."
And there you have it — in about as clear language as you could ever hope to have: a prince of the Church openly acknowledging the betrayal of bishops. But according to the privileged gossiping class in the Church, such things should never be spoken of openly lest the Peasant Catholics are brought too much into the know. So it's deemed bad form to speak of a cardinal advancing the cause of radical homosexualists by pressing for their inclusion in the New York St. Patrick's Day parade. The faithful should clam up in the face of a cardinal opening up his cathedral for the fake ordinations of ministers of false religion.
The most the faithful are allowed to do apparently is talk in the widest of generalities about structures of sinful deeds, but never bring up the individuals who promote, advance and sustain these structures. The continual fallback position is: "They are the hierarchy, so we can't say anything."
Well, the first part of that is true. They are members of the hierarchy. No argument there. But does it follow from that fact that they should be continually allowed to fall down in their duties, advance the homosexual agenda in the Church by omission or commission, attack the traditions of the Church, permit abuses after abuse to go on unchecked, allow priests who oppose the Faith to hold places of prominence in a diocese?
It's fine for the faithful who know and understand the crisis (which Cdl. Burke said is the worst in the history of the Church) to stand in the teeth of this storm, but what about the others? What about those whose faith is new and tender? What about them? What about when they show up to a parish for the first time and witness a bishop crooning away and strumming his ukulele from the pulpit at a confirmation Mass?
What about when the young fellow who has some interest in the Catholic Church arrives at a parish and sees not even passing respect in manners, clothing, habits, posture or preaching on the part of the congregation? Should the faithful just ignore these travesties? And they are travesties because souls are being damaged.
What self-respecting healthy young male would walk into the average parish in the United States these days and see anything he would want to be a part of? And this absolutely does devolve to the bishop, whether the powers that be want to talk about it or not; it is absolutely his fault this garbage is allowed to continue.
What does anybody think Cdl. Burke is talking about when he says the suffering of the faithful is increased by the betrayal of bishops? What betrayal? What bishops? He isn't talking about centuries-old history. He's talking about the here and now. That bishops would push watered-down catechesis like ALPHA in their dioceses as a way of pretending to jump start evangelization efforts is a crime. It's a crime because there are many other genuine, authentic Catholic resources that are not Protestant-inspired. Burke himself even publicly instructed some of his charges to have nothing to do with ALPHA because it is a threat to the Faith in that it doesn't teach it.
Then you have the damage done to the faithful by the bishops' refusal to offer the Mass the way Vatican II instructed it to be done. The priest is not supposed to be facing the people. Every bishop knows this if they have ever read the documents so many of them continue pounding out. Nowhere does it say in the documents of the Second Vatican Council that the priest is supposed to face the people, that Latin was to be dropped, that Gregorian Chant was supposed to be replaced by horrible songs written by priests who eventually went on to live the homosexual lifestyle.
The bishops know, in fact, that Vatican II never called for any of this, not one bit of it. It didn't say dump the organ and stick in folk groups. It didn't say invite kids into the sanctuary. It didn't say anything that you see at the usual parish Mass, yet people are supposed to say nothing about any of this?
This goes on precisely because the bishops let it go on. It doesn't advance on its own; it is promoted and allowed by individual men who choose to let it go on. Yet to challenge this betrayal — and it is absolutely betrayal, the very betrayal that Cdl. Burke is talking about — to challenge it is looked down on as being horribly uncouth, a rebellion, and so forth.
Those who have the ability through access to the bishops to say something of all this would never utter a word because they know the reprisal would be swift. They would immediately fall from grace, be banned, shipped off for "counseling" and so forth.
Nothing in the Church will change as long as the betrayal by bishops and priests is a taboo subject. Little else angered Our Lord more than His Apostles jockeying for positions of power and prestige. Yet that is the status quo these days among many in the hierarchy — and the Church is in ruins because of it.
Anyone who understands the crisis knows that it is a crisis of faith among the leaders who either no longer believe, or no longer believe enough. Thank God that Cdl. Burke — who receives no end of insults behind his back from two-faced clerics — has the grace to call a spade a spade.
The Faith has been and is being betrayed by bishops and the faithful suffer for it. The faithful have to watch their loved ones abandon the Faith because they were never properly taught it because of deceitful, scheming, traitorous bishops, many of whom are still active in their betrayal. They refuse to enforce canon law with regard to reception of Holy Communion, as just one glaring example.
It is right to oppose these men in the treachery and call them out. The Church does not belong to them. It belongs to Jesus Christ, and they have no right to squelch the truth because it would create headaches for them if it was preached. The betrayal needs to be called out.