A number of years back, we were speaking with a highly influential member of the hierarchy who confessed to me that Pope Francis said directly to him, "I want the confusion."
The papal reply came in direct response to the hierarchy man's pain over all the confusion in the Church today. Who the member of the hierarchy was who told me this doesn't matter. It was a private conversation, but I have absolutely no reason to assume what was told me was not true.
Looking around the Church and the culture today, it seems confusion is the order of the day. For example, in Washington, D.C., with the poster boy for confusion (the unelected president), confusion reigns supreme. Biden doesn't seem to know what's going on, whether it's with Afghanistan, the border, China, the economy, the China virus or foreign policy. All of it seems completely lost on him. No wonder Jen Psaki and Nancy Pelosi never allow him to answer reporters' questions — unless they're about his favorite ice cream.
But the mass confusion in the White House points to something else, just as it does in the Church. Biden isn't really the one making the decisions. Once you accept the fact that the government is being run by a bunch of grown-up hippies from the 1960s, things become very clear. They have no love of America, just as Obama didn't, and they don't have any real-world experience, just like Obama didn't.
On Obama, he walks into the White House not especially well off. He walks out of the White House extremely wealthy. Imagine how much better things could have been for him if Americans weren't so racist. He could have two houses on Martha's Vineyard.
There are so many parallels between the antics and mindset of the current government leaders and Church leaders that it really is staggering. But when you think about it, why should it be staggering? They all grew up in the same hippie, anti-U.S., anti-establishment, pro-deviance culture.
But even the leaders aren't actual leaders. What does lead them is a mix of modernism and Marxism, which itself is even somewhat vague to them (and which is why within their own ranks you see this division and confusion over strategy, e.g., the Bernie/AOC camp vs. the Pelosi/Schumer camp.)
In the Church, we see the same thing in the hierarchy. Take the recent kerfuffle over the so-called Eucharist-coherence document. What a waste of time. Yet here we see within the ranks of the modernist prelates massive disagreement. One-third of them didn't want to even talk about it, while many of the rest pushed forward the idea of talking about it but not really saying anything substantive.
As I was relaying to one bishop recently, what precisely is the USCCB going to produce that's more profound than what St. Thomas has already written about the Eucharist? Maybe the bishops haven't learned about cut and paste yet.
There are many examples of how modernism has infected the hierarchy and created this reign of confusion, but this Eucharist-coherence debate is a timely example. First, what does the term "Eucharistic coherence" even reference? Well, coherence is a quality of being logical and consistent, forming a unified whole based on those qualities. Remember, this whole thing began because Joe Biden and others like him are allowed to receive Holy Communion.
That a child killer and sodomite supporter would be allowed to receive is at odds with what the Church teaches about the Eucharist. So what do the bishops do in their stunning brilliance? They decide to produce a document on Eucharist coherence and exclude any discussion from it on the very issue at hand: notorious Catholic characters receiving Holy Communion.
And somehow they think the worthless document they are all laboring over is going to be read by anyone besides their interns and a few staffers. All that the U.S. bishops and various big-name politicos seem to understand is that the Church and America of yesteryear must be demolished. What takes its place, how it comes into being, what policies and processes emerge, who the leaders are — none of that really matters. All that matters is that everything that used to be the case must be wiped away.
On the political scene, look no further than the China virus: mask, no mask, flatten the curve, crush the economy, get jabbed, get boosters, Delta variant, religious exemptions, no religious exemptions, get fired, sue, courts agree, courts disagree.
COVID is about politics, not science, which is why there is such massive disagreement and confusion over it. It all makes your head spin, and that is exactly the point. It's not the worldly leaders actually pulling the strings here. It's the otherworldly leader pulling their strings.
It's the same in the Church hierarchy. The heresy of modernism and Marxism are really the same thing, just presented slightly differently. The underlying thesis of each is that the way things were in the past is bad and must be supplanted. That's it, nothing more. Blow up everything that preceded us, and we'll make it up as we go along after that.
So yes, when a common enemy comes along harkening back to the past, they can easily surround him and attack. Trump comes to mind with his "America First" theme. Likewise, the Traditional Latin Mass with its God-first theme. And any Catholic media apostolates who preach Catholic truth with a ferocity also become the object of attacks.
But leaving aside obvious enemies, the Marxist/modernist crowd then begins to break down and divide over everything — not in principle, mind you, but in tactics and plans. Even when it comes to who's actually in charge. They are all beholden to a grand vision of humanity without religion and political freedom, but everything after that becomes vague in terms of who calls the shots, which plan gets followed, how to execute a series of plans not everyone agrees on — you get the idea.
If you drift back to the days of Nazi Germany, even the leadership of the Third Reich couldn't see straight on the "Jewish question." The Nuremberg laws themselves were a complete cluster of definitions, legal recourse, administrative madness, mass confusion of how certain things were to be applied and what exemptions there were, if any. Even that couldn't be agreed upon.
From that mass confusion, of course, we got the so-called Final Solution, but even the term implies enormous disagreement over what the solution should be. The problem was about how to create a Jew-free Germany. The solution to the problem — the Final Solution — was just to kill them all.
But the point is, before the Final Solution, there were many other "solutions." There were mass-sterilization programs, mass-deportation programs, mass-incarceration programs, mass-disenfranchisement programs, mass-ghetto programs and so forth. Mass extermination was not in any of the original programs.
Likewise, in our day, the "problem" for the modernists and Marxists is this: How do we eradicate tradition from the Church and the culture? We see right now tons of ideas and programs to do just that: Pack the Supreme Court, blow up the filibuster, put the TLM on life support, replace catechesis with pabulum.
Within their ranks, there are all sorts of disagreements, and, in both politics and the Church, it's not entirely clear, from an earthly perspective, just who exactly is in charge. Is there an individual or cabals behind the respective thrones? It's not entirely clear.
The only thing that is clear is the dominance of confusion everywhere. And that, we know, comes from the ancient enemy. Hold fast to that tradition, no matter the cost to yourself.