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  • The Liberal Protestant Future of Catholic Dissent

    by Tom Piatak

    Rev. Helmut Schuller (The Plain Dealer)

    One of the many memorable scenes in David Lean’s Doctor Zhivago features Zhivago’s family fleeing the ugliness and brutality of Moscow after the Bolshevik Revolution for the tranquility of the family’s country estate in Varykino.  Upon reaching the estate after an arduous journey, Zhivago’s father-in-law, Alexander Gromeko, finds the main house boarded up, with a notice affixed to the door.  After reading the notice, he cannot contain his exasperation: “A body, styling itself the Yuriatin Committee of Revolutionary Justice, has expropriated my house. In the name of the people. Very well. I’m one of the people, too!”

    I know how Gromeko felt.  I recently attended a lecture at the Cleveland City Club by Helmut Schuller, a dissident Austrian priest who just finished touring the United States to promote his plan to dramatically refashion the Catholic Church so that it is more in line with Schuller’s opinions.  Schuller claims to be acting in the name of “the People of God,” a phrase he repeated many times in Cleveland.  As a baptized Catholic, I’m one of the People of God, too.  But I no more gave Schuller authority to speak in my name than Gromeko gave the Bolsheviks authority to steal his house.  And despite fawning coverage from such venues as The New York Times, NPR, Reuters, and the National Catholic Reporter, most of Schuller’s speeches were attended by crowds of no more than a few hundred, or less than the number who attend Mass each Sunday at a typical suburban parish.

    It is clear why the media is so excited about Schuller.  His talk featured nothing indicating that Schuller believes that the Church is right about anything of importance or that it has anything to teach the world.  Instead, Schuller said the Church should learn from the world, and he repeatedly stated that the Church needs to conform to the opinions of “the people of our time.”  So much for tradition, Chesterton’s “democracy of the dead.”  Indeed, Schuller presented the Church as an oppressive institution, advocating disobedience by priests because Germans and Austrians have learned that obedience is dangerous and stating that change can come to the Church just as change came to the Soviet Union in 1989.  In other words, a priest’s vow to obey his bishop is the equivalent of the oath of a soldier in the Wehrmacht to obey Adolf Hitler and the Vatican is the equivalent of the Kremlin.  No wonder the City Club presented Schuller’s talk as part of “The Karen Faith Witt and A.H. Weinstein Memorial Forum on the Persecution of Peoples.”

    What Schuller told the City Club he wanted was democratic governance in the Church, women priests and married priests, a “renewal of our moral teaching” so that homosexual acts are sanctioned and divorced and remarried Catholics can receive Holy Communion, and “a new language … for delivering the Gospel to human beings today.”  Schuller didn’t go into detail about this last point, but his later reference to “his or her mind,” in speaking of the Holy Spirit, perhaps gave a hint about what Schuller wants.

    Needless to say, most of what Schuller advocates is contrary to the New Testament and authoritative Church teaching.  The New Testament condemns homosexual acts, and one of the ways Christians stood apart in antiquity is that they avoided such acts.  Although a current talking point among some on the Catholic Left is the claim that Jesus never explicitly condemned homosexuality, Schuller’s advocacy for Communion for divorced and remarried Catholics shows just how much such an explicit denunciation by Our Lord would have meant to Schuller and all the others who long for the Church to submit to the Zeitgeist.  After all, Christ was quite clear about divorce:  “Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery and the one who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery.”   The Church accordingly has maintained that marriage is indissoluble from the earliest times, and another way that Christians stood out in antiquity is that they did not divorce.  The prohibition on receiving Communion while engaging in adultery or any other serious sin is not an imposition of the Vatican, but a teaching of St. Paul:  “Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord unworthily will have to answer for the body and blood of the Lord. It is apparent that Schuller does not regard Scripture as being authoritative in any meaningful sense.

    Nor does Schuller regard Church teaching as authoritative.  He campaigns for women priests even though John Paul II declared that “in order that all doubt may be removed regarding a matter of great importance, a matter which pertains to the Church’s divine constitution itself, in virtue of my ministry of confirming the brethren (cf. Lk 22:32) I declare that the Church has no authority whatsoever to confer priestly ordination on women and that this judgment is to be definitively held by all the Church’s faithful.”  Although Schuller wants bishops to be removed from office as a result of popular demand, this is exactly what Saint Clement warned against in his widely read Letter to the Corinthians, written in the first century:  “It is disgraceful, beloved, very disgraceful, and unworthy of your training in Christ, to hear that the stable and ancient Church of the Corinthians, on account of one or two persons, should revolt against its presbyters. … The result is that blasphemies are brought upon the name of the Lord through your folly, and danger accrues for yourselves.”  Schuller’s faith, then, is wholly subjective, and not bound by the Bible, the Pope, or Tradition.  The only imperative is to bow to the demands of today as interpreted by Schuller.

    In this, Schuller is following in the well trod footsteps of liberal Protestantism.  Nothing in Schuller’s talk indicated that he would disagree with anything found in liberal Protestantism, and in Austria he has advocated freely giving Communion to Protestants.  Liberal Protestantism began, in H. Richard Niebuhr’s famous words, with the belief that “A God without wrath brought men without sin into a kingdom without judgment through the ministrations of a Christ without a cross.”  Its logical culmination is found in the likes of Gary Hall, the Dean of Washington’s National Cathedral, who just told The Washington Post that “I describe myself as a non-theistic Christian.”  Since there is no sin in the world of liberal Protestantism, except maybe holding unfashionable political opinions, and no beliefs that are necessary for salvation, except maybe the current editorial position of The New York Times, denominations that embrace liberalism have a hard time convincing people to get up early on Sundays and go to church, even though they have done everything Helmut Schuller wants the Catholic Church to do.  The United Church of Christ has lost half its members since the early 1960s, even though the overall US population has doubled during the same period of time, the Episcopal Church has lost nearly a quarter of its Sunday communicants in the last decade, and the established Protestant churches in Europe have fared even worse.  As measured by demography, liberal Christianity is a clear failure.

    At the talk, I asked Schuller why he thought the implementation of his ideas would not lead to the same disastrous decline in numbers that liberal Protestantism has experienced worldwide.  He dismissed my question as “capitalistic” and said “that if we get more trouble than we have, we have to do it, because it’s our opinion, it’s our conviction, out of the principles of our faith.”  This is essentially the same as Joseph Ratzinger’s prediction that the Church might need to become “small,” a prediction that has been enraging parts of the Catholic Left for decades, with this difference:  Ratzinger was willing to countenance declining Church membership if that was the result of maintaining historic Christian doctrine; Schuller is willing to risk declining Church membership as a result of abandoning historic Christian doctrine to suit his “opinion.”  Schuller ended his response to me with a curt “That’s it.”  By contrast, he professed “respect” for the women in the audience who claimed to be ordained Catholic priests, women Schuller also labeled “prophetic.”  Despite his repeated calls for an “open dialogue,” it seems that Schuller really isn’t that interested in talking to people who disagree with him.

    Schuller displayed similar impatience with younger priests.  When an audience member lamented that younger priests were “more official and hierarchical,” Schuller said that for the last 20 to 30 years seminarians have been “interested in the First Vatican Council Church” and that such views represent a “real clash between two visions of Church,” since Schuller sees himself and his confreres as championing Vatican II.  The only hope Schuller offered his distressed interlocutor was that younger priests will “gather some experience in life and faith,” the unspoken assumption being that experience will lead ineluctably to holding the same opinions Schuller has.  Schuller repeated this theme in Los Angeles, warning his audience there that “The church is more and more led by relatively young priests of these movements, who nobody knows really.”

    Early in his talk, Schuller complained that his “dialogue” with the Austrian bishops was a failure, even though he admitted that the bishops were polite and cordial.  The problem, in essence, was that the bishops did not agree with Schuller.  For Schuller, “dialogue” is a process that leads to the acceptance of his opinions.  Let us hope that never happens.  The way to deal with demanding moral teachings is not to jettison them, but to provide support to people trying to live by them.  And the way forward for the Church is not more councils, committees, and structures, but a renewed emphasis on holiness for all its members, from the Pope and the Curia to the most humble layman.  I believe Vatican II may even have said something about that.

    (Photo credit: The Cleveland Plain Dealer)

    The views expressed by the authors and editorial staff are not necessarily the views of
    Sophia Institute, Holy Spirit College, or the Thomas More College of Liberal Arts.

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    • John

      This guy is on the losing side of history, as are all others of his ilk. They are old, grey and crabby. Expect increasing bitterness and hissy teenage like fits of wrath!

      • http://twitter.com/ahm Avery

        Let’s not put people on the “losing side of history”, which is the progressives’ way of framing human destiny. He is on the losing side of a much more spiritual battle.

    • Deacon Ed Peitler

      Having come of age during those great culturally cataclysmic years of the late 1960′s, I have come to the conclusion that dissenters from Catholic Church teaching, authority and discipline are usually hiding something – most notably an unconfessed sin – not atypically homosexual acts. That is why they so vehemently attack Church teachings – they are experiencing a cognitive and moral dissonance which their dissent is an attempt to reconcile.

      But as for Mr Schuller, (I say “Mr.” because he has obviously excommunicated himself from the Catholic Church by his public pronouncements), I question whether anyone ought to even engage him at his level for fear of treating what he says with any degree of seriousness. Rather, I propose that we all try to book him for the local comedy club where you live so that we can at least derive a few laughs from this jokester. The act can be called “95 Theses Revisited.”

      • Ralphster

        Deacon Ed, exactly what is or is not dissent from Church teaching? When all too many clergy in the Church speak on behalf of separation of church and state and religious liberty for all as a natural right, does that not conflict with the perennial values and teachings of our faith? Are we going to selectively combat the dissent of today, while allowing what was dissent as recently as 1955 to become codified?

        • Ryan J Brady

          Religious Liberty is a much different question than that of homosexual acts and women priests. When the Church speaks on matters of faith and morals, she has authority to teach all nations. The realm of politics pertains to questions of prudential judgments – at least on certain points. The underlying truths (for instance, that “extra ecclesiam nulla salus” in the sense that everyone, objectively speaking, is morally bound to conform to the norms of natural and divine law) remain. It is not heresy to see how the truths of the Gospel should be applied to given situations. Heresy is an obstinate denial or doubt of a truth necessary to be believed with divine and Catholic faith. There is a difference.

          • Ralphster

            You are wrong, Ryan. Separation of Church and State is no more a political matter for prudential judgment than legalized abortion is. Numerous popes have authoritatively addressed the issue in official, binding, papal magisterial teaching and have condemned such separation in clear, harsh, unmistakable terms. Are you actually claiming that official papal doctrinal teaching in Exsurge Domine, Mirari Vos, Quanta Cura, Immortale Dei, Libertas, Vehementer Nos, and Quas Primas are nothing more than a collection of prudential judgments that we are now free to dispense with?
            If you are not at all familiar with the authoritatively binding doctrine that the Church has had throughout the ages, then it is an unfortunate testament to the deficient nature of the magisterial teaching we have had since the 1960s.

            • Michael Paterson-Seymour

              Avery Cardinal Dulles put i very well: “The formulation of revealed truth develops through the discernment of new truths that are formally implicit in the apostolic deposit. Such truths, once proclaimed by the Church as divinely revealed, are dogmas and must be held by all as matters of divine and Catholic faith. Social teaching, on the other hand, consists of behavioral norms for social conduct in conformity with the gospel. While the principles remain constant, the proximate norms are not free from contingency because society itself is in flux. Specific regulations rarely have the universal and permanent character that belongs to dogma.”

              Church – State relations clearly belong to the second category.

              • Ralphster

                This won’t hold up well to any meaningful, traditional scrutiny, Michael. Social teaching also includes matters of life and family. So we can suppose that those are contingent as well, and might be changed in the future? That would put a crimp in the pro-life movement.
                There can be no doubt that the popes who taught the Social Reign of Christ considered themselves to be teaching officially and authoritatively, not making some prudential applicable judgment for their times alone. Denouncing something in stark unconditional terms as a pernicious error is not a matter of contingency because it happens to not have sat well with Cardinal Dulles and his First Things crowd. Also, the Church-State relations of the 1950s were in conformity to tradition. By the 1960s, they weren’t. So what major societal change in the span of those few short years could justify this change? Hint: the death of Pope Pius XII won’t count as a legitimate answer.

                • Michael Paterson-Seymour

                  Those teachings were clarified by the ecumenical, most holy and inspired council, in which the bishops, assembled in the Holy Spirit, taught with one voice the same heavenly utterances of the Gospel, They well understood and faithfully expounded the Church’s teaching in this matter in the light of modern conditions

                  • Ralphster

                    The Church’s teachings were already definitively taught and clarified well before 1965, Michael. Second Vatican presumably ratifies and re-affirms what has already been taught and declared. Insofar as it does not, then it is perfectly proper to question and withhold assent from any such a novelty.

                    • Michael Paterson-Seymour

                      I disagree. Former pronouncements did require clarification, in their very nature. As Bl John Henry Newman explains:

                      “As to the condemnation of propositions all she tells us is, that the thesis condemned when taken as a whole, or, again, when viewed in its context, is heretical, or blasphemous, or impious, or whatever like epithet she affixes to it. We have only to trust her so far as to allow ourselves to be warned against the thesis, or the work containing it. Theologians employ themselves in determining what precisely it is that is condemned in that thesis or treatise; and doubtless in most cases they do so with success; but that determination is not de fide; all that is of faith is that there is in that thesis itself, which is noted, heresy or error, or other like peccant matter, as the case may be, such, that the censure is a peremptory command to theologians, preachers, students, and all other whom it concerns, to keep clear of it. But so light is this obligation, that instances frequently occur, when it is successfully maintained by some new writer, that the Pope’s act does not imply what it has seemed to imply, and questions which seemed to be closed, are after a course of years re-opened. In discussions such as these, there is a real exercise of private judgment and an allowable one; the act of faith, which cannot be superseded or trifled with, being, I repeat, the unreserved acceptance that the thesis in question is heretical, or the like, as the Pope or the Church has spoken of it”

                  • slainte

                    Vatican II teachings are now interpreted to favor a political and global one world order, a single ruling Public Authority, and a centralized world bank. This is not the pre-Vatican II church, but it is a Church that is oriented toward Humanism.

                    “…..It is the task of today’s generation to recognize and consciously to accept these new world dynamics for the achievement of a universal common good. Of course, this transformation will be made at the cost of a gradual, balanced transfer of a part of each nation’s powers to a world Authority and to regional Authorities, but this is necessary at a time when the dynamism of human society and the economy and the progress of technology are transcending borders, which are in fact already very eroded in a globalized world.

                    The birth of a new society and the building of new institutions with a universal vocation and competence are a prerogative and a duty for everyone, without distinction. What is at stake is the common good of humanity and the future itself….”

                    See, “Towards Reforming The International Financial and Monetary Systems in the Context of Global Public Authority” dated October 24, 2011.

                    http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/pontifical_councils/justpeace/documents/rc_pc_justpeace_doc_20111024_nota_en.html.

        • Alecto

          Separation of church and state as interpreted by today’s indoctrinate is not at all what the Framers of the Constitution had in mind, and there is no term “separation of church and state” in the Constitution. The intended meaning never ever anticipated the prohibition of religious practice or belief. The Framers never intended a preferential treatment for one faith over another, or creation of a state-sponsored religious denomination owing to their persecution by England, which served as the reason for many English, Dutch, and others to remove themselves to the colonies. It’s ludicrous to think the Constitution contains a bar against religion informing one’s conscience in other aspects of life!

          Dissent is a political right of every person against a tyrannical government, which is always coercive in nature. That does not apply to voluntary adherence to religious doctrine. Membership in the Roman Catholic faith is strictly voluntary, and no one is holding a gun to Mr. Schuller’s head. He is certainly free to leave the Church for one more to his liking. That is what an honest intellect chooses, which may explain why he hasn’t departed.

          • Ralphster

            Separation of Church and State, Alecto, whether in the form we have it today, or in the ‘original’ form of the 1790s, is directed against the official authoritative teaching of the Catholic Church.
            The Church has been quite clear that all governments are to give a special status to Catholicism apart from all other religions as the one true faith.

            • Horatio Hornblatt

              Come out and declare specifically what your problem is.

              • Ralphster

                The post you responded to sums things up nicely. If you are asking for more explanation, please let me know.

            • Alecto

              You’re not American, are you? No American would ever assert that knowing we fought a revolution so every man could worship God in the way he saw fit, not as some nabob dictated to him. I doubt even Catholics who fought in the revolution or signed the Declaration of Independence would agree with your position. But, I will write that your attitude explains why to this day, there exists such deep distrust, suspicion and ill will between faithful Christian Americans and the papacy.

              • Ralphster

                Why would I not be an American, Alecto? Since when is the American Revolution the seminal event of mankind, relegating the Crucifixion, Resurrection, and Descent to second fiddle? Have you carefully studied Church teaching on this matter? It didn’t all of a sudden change after 1776 or 1863, or even 1945. All religions should be treated equally by the government? That’s not what Pope Pius IX taught.

                • Alecto

                  Popes don’t run our country. They don’t run theirs very well, either.

                  • Adam Baum

                    No country is run well. There’s social and fiscal disorder everywhere.

                  • Ralphster

                    Popes do in fact teaching official authoritative teaching that is incumbent upon all persons, including all in civil authority. No exemption exists for the United States. To quote Louis V.:

                    Our FAITH is placed not in the Constitution, but in Jesus Christ, Sovereign and Lord.

                    Our HOPE for freedom is expressed not by reciting Constitutional precepts, but in teaching both individuals and States to observe all things whatsoever that Our Blessed Lord commanded.

                    Our LOVE for God and country is made manifest not through acts of patriotic sentimentalism, but by proclaiming the Sovereign Rights of Christ the King to all, including those in civil authority, that they may come to heel under His sweet and saving yoke.

                    • HJG

                      Unless you think Jesus came to the US, Alecto. Are you Mormon?

                      • Alecto

                        No, I am a Christian and an American, and I cannot for the life of me figure out why Catholics think the two are mutually exclusive!

                      • enness

                        Who said that, besides Ralphster? If you think he represents everybody, you’ve got another thing coming. I agree with Art Deco, and I hope you aren’t convinced that comboxes are an accurate cross-section of the real world. Please get out more.

                      • Valentin

                        Alecto I would argue that we should bow to the pope because he is the Vicar of Christ not slavishly but out of love which seems lacking today in your beloved America where most people follow laws not because of some rational understanding or love but because the cops will fine them or send them to prison, as for your little “why Catholics think the two are mutually exclusive!” I don’t know maybe because most american catholics don’t even go to church, quite a few of them are willing to murder their own children, there are people like youwho seem too act as though we shouldn’t give a damn about loyalty to the Bride of Christ as opposed to your man-made american (with a small a) idea that Church doctrine plays no role in civil law. I might even argue that American laws pertaining to Alcohol go against the book of Ecclesiastices.

                      • Valentin

                        Let further my comment, I don’t I can be loyal to most countries without disloyal to the Church.

                    • Alecto

                      Popes only have authority over teaching for Catholics, not everyone. As I previously wrote, membership in this faith is voluntary, not coerced. The day anyone coerces membership in a faith is the day that faith compromises itself.

                      • Valentin

                        Do you think that people who aren’t Catholic are right not to be Catholic?

                    • enness

                      That is all true, without inherently precluding a Constitution.

                  • enness

                    Popes don’t run countries.

              • Slainte

                We fought a revolution Alecto because the English monarchy was exacting exorbitant taxes from its English colonial subjects while denying them the right of representation. This was perceived to be an affront to the colonists’ understanding of themselves as Englishman entitled to the full spectrum of rights accorded their fellow Englishmen residing in England.

                The religious freedom issue may have been the catalyst that caused Calvinist Puritan subjects to leave England and Ulster Ireland in the 1600 and early 1700′s, but religious freedom was not the proximate cause of the revolution; denial of full rights as Englishmen was.

                • Alecto

                  The evolution from colonist to revolutionary occurred over decades and cannot be attributed to any one offense by Britain.

                  I know how hostile Catholics are generally to concept of liberty, preferring slavish obeisance to clerics instead of self-governance or personal liberty; their hatred for the Enlightenment (which I personally believe God inspired) and which spawned the idea that every person is endowed with rights by our Creator, and those rights cannot be taken away by government or by Church authorities, that civic institutions govern certain spheres of life upon which government has no right to intrude, such as religious exercise. I simply cannot tolerate (a la Ralphie) the suggestion that its failure to establish a papal state is somehow a flaw. I believe God prefers a life well-lived as a free person to a live half-lived under papal corruption.

                  • Ralphster

                    Alecto, we are to be obedient to God’s will, and He gave us the Catholic Church in order to understand what that is. A flawed, logical postivist liberty that does not even authoritatively enshrine the fundamentals of the natural law, let alone the rightful tribute due to Catholicism alone, is certainly not what Christ ever intended. Liberty comes from faithful adherence to God’s will, not the right to pick which heresies and grave sins are pleasing to the palate.

                    • Alecto

                      In this country, individuals are free to discover that. I look at the history of Catholicism in Europe and its current state as opposed to those who profess belief in God in the U.S. Exactly what of “faith” is left in Europe which has a history of preventing religious freedom? Juxtapose that with U.S. history of freedom of exercise, and statistics which indicate the vast majority of Americans are still Christian believers. Coercion in the religious sphere does NOT breed faith. On the contrary, freedom of conscience is what promotes belief. I’m sorry you cannot make that connection!

                    • Alecto

                      Without the freedom to do wrong, one can never choose right.

                  • Art Deco

                    You need to deal with real people, not caricatures.

                    • Alecto

                      Because the Vatican doesn’t have a gay lobby? It doesn’t have its own set of issues, chiefly corruption? C’mon, you can do better than that.

                      • enness

                        Did St. Peter deny Christ three times? What is your point?

                  • johnschuh

                    “Slavish obedience to clergy?” It is this mantra that led to the slaughter of priests in the French and Russian Revolution and the end of religious freedom for millions.

                    • Alecto

                      No, John, it’s the invitation to live and let live. This isn’t Russia or France, and we don’t want it to become Russia or France. What is truly bizarre is Ralphster’s suggestion that Americans need to bow down to the pope, yet people like you think I’m the fanatic?

                      • johnschuh

                        Not sure what YOU mean by”bowing down” to the pope. When I came close to John Paul as he was riding by in his “Popemobile,” I did take off my cap. Where religious doctrine is concerned I defer to his opinion.

                      • Alecto

                        His suggestion that the U.S. needs to give “special” status to Catholicism above other religions isn’t an American perspective. Regardless of whether anyone sees the importance of faith as the source for morality (which Americans have traditionally believed and ordered their lives around that belief) we are woefully imbalanced. The state has supplanted religious belief. Unfortunately, the unholy alliance between the Catholic Church in America and its chief funding source, the federal government, is immoral and corrupts the independence of the Catholic Church, which now finds itself in a Gordian knot.

                      • johnschuh

                        You may not be aware of the “Blaine Amendment,” which was a major effort in the 19th Century on the part of Protestants to keep the Catholic Church from receiving state funding for its schools and hospitals. It was proposed as an amendment to the Federal Constitution but never ratified. It was, however, put into the Constitutions of maybe thirty states. In 1947, it was incorporated into the First Amendment by the Supreme Court in the Everson Case, where Hugo Black, the liberal judge and ex-Klansman, made the term “separation of Church and State” part of constitutional law. Aimed at Catholics it became the first step in expunging all preference for Christianity from American law. Ironically the Blaine Amendment aimed to keep Catholics from sharing in educational funding with public schools that inculcated students in Protestant values, They hoped to use the schools to convert the new immigrants to as, you contend” to American values. Now, of course, they are converting them to secularism.

                      • enness

                        LOL. Alecto, our charities are suing the government. I don’t know how one could describe a more tense and less cordial relationship. If you’re going to claim the federal government to be the Church’s “chief funding source” you had better be prepared to prove it beyond any shadow of a doubt, with copious citations. That, I suspect, is a laughable assertion.

                  • slainte

                    The sovereign nations of the earth will be asked to cede some of that Liberty to a Global Public Authority for the Common Good.

                    “…..It is the task of today’s generation to recognize and consciously to accept these new world dynamics for the achievement of a universal common good. Of course, this transformation will be made at the cost of a gradual, balanced transfer of a part of each nation’s powers to a world Authority and to regional Authorities, but this is necessary at a time when the dynamism of human society and the economy and the progress of technology are transcending borders, which are in fact already very eroded in a globalized world.

                    The birth of a new society and the building of new institutions with a universal vocation and competence are a prerogative and a duty for everyone, without distinction. What is at stake is the common good of humanity and the future itself….”

                    See, “Towards Reforming The International Financial and Monetary Systems in the Context of Global Public Authority” dated October 24, 2011.

                    http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/pontifical_councils/justpeace/documents/rc_pc_justpeace_doc_20111024_nota_en.html. is

                    • Alecto

                      Frightening one world Marxist-speak from an out-of-control Vatican meddling in affairs over which it has absolutely NO authority given it by Jesus Christ or anybody else! Whoever wrote that needs to be given a one-way ticket to Iran or Saudi Arabia to find out how a theocracy operates. This must be stopped at all costs before every individual is enslaved to a centralized world government over which he has no say, no participation. Catholics are, unfortunately, on the wrong side of the globalist tyranny and there is going to be a terrible, terrible price to pay for that.

                      • slainte

                        They seem to have forgotten that power vested in one political authority corrupts absolutely. This definition of Social Justice is troubling.

                      • Alecto

                        Meanwhile the tumbleweeds blow through the Vatican while nuns and Christians in Egypt are dragged through the streets, their schools and churches burned. Vatiots (see what I did there combining “idiot” and “Vatican”) hold hands singing Kumbaya? I’d like a ticket to Rome so I can personally go kick some a$$. It’s time for Christian bada$$es to militarize and start fighting our own battles.

                      • Augustus

                        Alecto,
                        If you expect the Vatican to call a crusade, you should not hold your breath. That might have worked, oh, a millennium ago. The Vatican has not had an army for centuries, and the soldiers that fought on behalf of Rome in the final battle to defend the papal states where volunteers. And I don’t think the Egyptian army would appreciate a bunch of Swiss guards showing up uninvited. The Vatican has no army and if it did, it would be a pr disaster. (Weren’t the “bad” popes of the Renaissance military leaders?) You might admire them more but let’s get real. Christians are a minority everywhere in the Middle East. You oppose U.S. intervention. Do you really think outside intervention on behalf of Christians would make that much of a difference, if it was even possible?

                      • Alecto

                        Oh, I’m not holding my breath. I am hoping for some actual spiritual leadership. It seems anywhere Christians are under assault, Middle East, Africa, Asia and North America, they can expect no support from the Marxist army in the Vatican. For too long it has taken the form of long-winded blowhards blathering about meaningless claptrap, not real world killing and death and massacres and how to stop them. I could care less how the Vatican views global payment systems, but I care very much about solutions to stop the violence against Christians, even if it involves killing in defense of those Christians.

                        How seriously can anyone take a religion that tells its followers, “It’s wonderful for you to die for your faith” but isn’t prepared to speak up or act to defend those lives? Or speak up when it matters most? No, instead we get inflated crises about minutiae and vapid stories about how wonderful this pope or bishop are because they really “care”. Whatever! Leaders who remain unmoved by carnage dehumanize themselves and reveal an isolated viewpoint to which no one listens. So you go on ahead and continue to defend them.

                        Since when did doing right ever result in a PR victory? That’s just window dressing by people who lack the talent or brains for any kind of substantive work.

                      • slainte

                        The Church is no longer militant; it is not willing to definitively confront and rebuke evil. It seeks to negotiate in the halls of diplomacy; to appease, and to remotely cooperate rather than to confront its enemies. It has forgotten the eternal and historical lesson that Evil never retreats, and that successful diplomacy is always predicated on the Adversary’s recognition that failure to reach terms will result in immediate reprisal.
                        The feminizing spirit of Vatican II, with its emphasis on human dignity, ecumenism, and mercy is insufficient, alone, to counter worldly turmoil. The masculine Church Militant is needed.
                        Our bishops and priests must rediscover their military roots (ie., the Jesuits) recalling that it was Jesus, most humble and gracious exemplar of Love, who grasped the whip and used it to drive out the money changers from His Father’s temple. Pray for the Church that Our Lord through Archangel Michael may inspire our leaders to protect its people.

                  • enness

                    *Sigh* I was beginning to like what you had to say to Ralphster. Unfortunately now you’re both way off the mark.

                    I made a choice to submit, willingly, to the wisdom of the Church…I could not have done that in anything but liberty. I continue to exercise prudence in my own life decisions wherever it is called for; that has not changed.

            • johnschuh

              The Church has always said that the law should respect the truth.

          • johnschuh

            Separation of Church and state has understood by most moderns comes from the radical views of the French Revolution, which set a political religion in place of traditional Christianity and Judaism,not the more moderate views of the American Revolution. It set the state not merely over the Church but made the state the moral authority in society. The US Constitution respected the existing relationships between the American states and the churches. The several French Constitutions set out to end the direct relationships between the Church and the people and made the clergy into agents of the state.

      • Ron Zimmer

        I agree with the deacon. I would say regarding these folks, “Follow the money; follow the condoms.”

    • Pingback: The Liberal Protestant Future of Catholic Dissent | Catholic Canada

    • Anne Hendershott

      Thank you for bringing this article to us – I find it most hopeful (and not surprising) that Schuller is not drawing crowds of dissidents. Christ promised us priests and our young and holy priests are the future of our Church. Walker Percy once predicted back in the 1980s that these priests would be like a “saving remnant” of the Church. Thank God for them.

    • Ford Oxaal

      There is money to be made, fame to be had, and pride to be swelled by running down the hill of public dissent. You go real fast and get a lot of head turns, but the landing can’t be good.

      • Valentin

        Excellent phrasing.

    • publiusnj

      Mr. Piatak’s point on the clearness of Christ’s condemnation of Divorce/Remarriage is a strong one that Catholics rarely surface in interfaith dialogues, but should. Jesus did not generally tighten down on the legal strictures of the Old Testament EXCEPT as it regards the strength of the vows of love we undertake when joining ourselves to our spouse. Most Christian churches (and some individual Catholic dissidents) have abandoned His Marriage standard for that worked out by the politicians in the legislative sausage-making process (“I’ll give you a tax decrease and some lessened regulation for your favorite constituents in exchange for No-Fault Divorce and Gay Marriage”). Christ’s Holy church, though, has maintained His Marriage standard, almost alone of all christian churches.

      • Ford Oxaal

        Very true. Marriage administration was taken over by the state as a natural progression of the reformation, and has been whittled down ever since. With the state in charge, libido is king, and commitment is in last place. In the U.S., with the onset of no-fault divorce in all 50 states, marriage was completely nullified because under true Christian, Catholic marriage, unlike other contracts, the parties to the contract cannot dissolve said contract. Gay marriage? Just the bugs coming out and eating the rotten corpse that remains from five centuries of steady decay.

    • Steven Jonathan

      Very good article thankyou!
      The logical end of Protestantism is belief in self and disbelief in the truth. It is a tragic and desolate universe when you are your favorite god.

      • Horatio Hornblatt

        Over time, protestantism is the field out of which atheism grows.

    • GaryLockhart

      Schuller’s antics are reminiscent of those of a 16th century paranoid, schizophrenic, anti-Semitic, alcoholic German monk who refused to control his libido. I concur with Deacon Peitler’s assessment of Schuller and his cabal of dissenters.

      “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” Santayana

      • Valentin

        Except that unlike the bad monk who wouldn’t say his prayers this guy(just like any modernist disguised as a Catholic) has more than half of the media, and popular crowd in favor of him which likely means that as long good Catholics don’t bend backwards for these guys we should be more or less fine.

    • Dan

      http://insightscoop.typepad.com/2004/2010/12/joseph-cardinal-ratzinger-on-the-term-people-of-god-and.html

      The above is a link to Joseph Ratzinger’s brilliant extemporaneous discourse on the term “the People of God.”

    • Adam Baum

      Simple question: Who paid for this little expedition?
      Money doesn’t talk, it screams.

      • Bono95

        According to Bob Dylan, “Money doesn’t talk (or scream), it SWEARS.” :-D

    • Alecto

      If the leadership truly wants to unite a divided Church, it had better start correcting these destructive men in collars! I guarantee defrocking him or shutting him up in a monastery (in Syria) to fast and pray in silence until he gets his head straight would do more to attract converts and reverts than slick marketing campaigns. There is a difference between loving leadership and cowardice. Not correcting his abuses, his deliberate misinformation to ignorant and confused people is just as bad as the error this “priest” spreads.

      • thecommentator

        I totally agree with you!

      • enness

        ” I guarantee defrocking him or shutting him up in a monastery (in Syria)”…would make him an instant white martyr to the press.

      • Valentin

        Definately the problem is that so many (not all) bishops are either not in favor of the Church or have no backbone.

    • Uuncle Max

      I for one would very much like to know who financed Schuller’s ‘tour’.

      Thanks for bringing up that the church might need to become ‘small’. I would venture that that is already happening, because the wheat is being separated from the chaff.

    • thecommentator

      Why the Vatican does not declare the excommunication of Schuller and his group?

      • GaudeteMan

        Excommunication? What’s that?

      • enness

        He’s done it himself.

    • Jean de Brissac la Motte

      A small point: I believe that the quote defining Liberal Protestantism is not from Reinhold Niebuhr but from H. Richard Niebuhr (Reinhold’s brother) in THE KINGDOM OF GOD IN AMERICA (1937). It’s such an extraordinary formulation that proper credit is due the formulator.

      • Crisiseditor

        Thank you for the correction. We agree entirely about giving proper credit.

    • MGK

      For many years I have wondered why the dissenters don’t form their own Church. But I have come to the conclusion that they just want to destroy the true Church.

      • NoreenD

        I think you’ve got it.

      • slainte

        They seek to destroy that which, by its continued presence, reminds them of their personal sins.
        They forget that the Church, through Jesus Christ, can offer them absolution to start life anew.

      • Ford Oxaal

        Once you make money telling a lie, it is hard to stop, even if you start to suspect it really is a lie.

        • GaudeteMan

          Medjugorje anyone?

      • John200

        Their own church, if it were formed, would fall to pieces in the first year; maybe the first week. The model is already present in the mainline Protestant churches.

        Imagine these liberals competing among themselves to deliver the worst message. And looky, there’s me on the sidewalk quietly holding up my banner, waving it high and wide. It says:

        “Dear heretics: I am sorry to see you leave the one true church. But good riddance to your message. Come back anytime you see your way home.”

        • Fr. Don

          Actually, the United American Catholic Church has been going since its formation in the 80′s. If they formed yet another dissident church it would sputter on and on and on.

          • Horatio Hornblatt

            ….until they died out. And they will.

          • enness

            The what? Who?

            (Get my point? It’s news to me that any such thing exists.)

          • Valentin

            In the end Good will triumph over evil we know this is the case eventually these loons will either fall or convert.

      • DonnaRuth

        Amen to that. In a running debate with a “Catholic” friend who would have applauded Schuller, I have repeatedly reminded her there are over 25,000 Christian denominations she can choose from, and if none of them appeal to her specific doctrines and dogmas, she is free to start her own church. Further, I remind her that, I, as a believing Catholic who loves the Church and all Church teachings, have no other place to go; this is it. So, would she either quietly accept what the Church offers, or just kindly move on, and leave us alone. But, no, she and others insist on staying and working to remake Church teaching, certain they are the new white martyrs for the faith. Kyrie eleison.

        • Deacon Ed Peitler

          You are missing the agenda here: it is not their right to find an ecclesial community suitable to their own individual preferences that motivates them. Rather, they simply want to deprive other Catholics from adhering to a faith based on the constant teachings of the Catholic Church.

          The same goes in politics for the Obamacrats. They are not after equal opportunity for all. What they want is to deprive you of the liberty and capital that comes with hard work and the God-given human resources at your disposal. They will not stop until they have destroyed all your wealth and have reduced you to the same impoverished state – financially and morally – as they are in.

          These people have no interest at all in anything but destroying those things which you hold most dear in life: religion, God, family, and a secure and safe environment in which to live and raise your children.

          • Bono95

            The Obamacrats, like all socialists and communists, want everyone to be equal . . . equally miserable, that is.

            • Valentin

              They’re not even on par with the vikings who tried to obtain some sort of civilization, they slimy politicians want to feel as if no one is higher than them both materially and spiritually so yes equally miserable.

      • Art Deco

        Because they would have to have the energy and enthusiasm you see amongst evangelical church-planters, not to mention the organizational talents you see in men like Jerry Falwell. They have nothing of the kind.

        You see so many handsome Anglican structures in this country, and, let us be fair, Catholic churches as well. The vigor of the congregations which commissioned those structures seems so very distant from our time and place.

        People like this priest live off legacies. They do not build them. You can say that of so many of us, including yours truly. The two excuses the rest of us have is that we are laymen, and we are not wreckers.

      • Valentin

        Certain people have hard hearts, and happen to choose the path of death.

    • Kenneth J. Howell

      Dissenters such as Mr. Schuller will fade with history, just as liberal Protestantism has and is fading. They eventually go the way of the dinosaurs. And for a good reason. Who wants to join or live in a church where you explicitly reject the very teachings which the religion held at its core? It smacks of lack of integrity. I know. I was once a Protestant and often tempted by its liberal wing. I finally realized that it’s more honest to be an atheist than a liberal Christian. I had to make a choice.

      • Alecto

        The danger, dear sir, is that weaker minds and intellects than yours are deeply influenced by such people. Look around you. How many Americans, teetering on the precipice of national stupidity, proclaim themselves “geniues” or “artists”?

    • cestusdei

      He is an apostate and his bishop should have him laicized.

    • NoreenD

      This sounds like the Mad Hatters’ tea party. It’s best not to give this guy too much attention.

    • hombre111

      I was ordained in 1964, the year before the Council ended. I vividly remember our disgust with a hermetically sealed authoritarian Church with no hope for growth or change. While the seminary faculty gave us the safe answers out of the manuals which praised St. Thomas while ignoring his spirit of honest inquiry, we were studying, on our own, the Liturgical Movement, and theologians like de Lubac and Congar and several others who were viewed with suspicion by Rome. Many were exonerated when they were named periti at the Council.
      We then watched in dismay as popes, especially John Paul II and Pope Benedict, tried to put the Council in reverse, so that it was never truly studied or applied in a systematic way by the whole Church. As we bemoan the current situation in the Church, remember that all of its bishops were named either by Pope John Paul or Pope Benedict. If confusion reigns, it is after forty or more years of leadership by those two men. And the bishops they appointed fail us now.
      As an old man, I watch the younger priests. When the Council ended, there were more than 100 priests in my diocese, and now there are about 45, with a large number stolen from poor dioceses in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. They struggle with the same problems that entangled us. Are they doing better? Too early to really tell. I have high hopes because they seem to be dedicated men.

      • ColdStanding

        Uncle Gilbert, resquiat in pacem, says:
        “Merely having an open mind is nothing. The object of opening the mind, as of opening the mouth, is to shut it again on something solid.”

        So, in hind sight, would you say you closed yours on something solid?

      • Pay

        The newer bishops are more orthodox than the Paul VI-Jadot bishops. We are still reeling from the libs being in charge.

        • hombre111

          Oh, please. Bishops are conservative by definition. Pope John Paul started to replace Jadot era bishops as soon as he came on board, and most had retired by the 1980′s. In the meanwhile, J2P2 bishops were multiplying like rabbits. Vatican II and the liberal days are far, far in the past. What happens now falls in the lap of the conservatives. Time to stop beating a dead horse.

          • Art Deco

            Bishops are conservative by definition.

            Howard Hubbard?

          • pay

            Seriously? The libs have had control for decades. The “conservatives” are few. The curse of liberalism and relativism is still in full force.

          • enness

            No, they’re not, please take my word for it. Maybe you live in a more conservative area.

      • newguy40

        Well, Father, I can only see what I see from where I sit in the pew in my little corner of the Catholic world.
        Waterdowned theology, lack of preaching on sin and the Magesterium, lack of devotion to the Holy Mother, and protestant (at best) music, lack of adherence to the GIRM.
        Lex Orandi, Lex Crendidi
        We were there Father. Where are holy and courageous priests?

        • Adam__Baum

          In a diocese in Pennsylvania that recently lost it’s Bishop.

        • hombre111

          I was there, too, from the beginning. The watered-down theology was contained in the manuals we studied in the seminary. I have always been good for a few sermons on sin. Don’t know how you preach about the Magisterium, except to remind the people about the role bishops and the popes have played in keeping the Church on course. I was filling in at a parish pastored by a very conservative priest a few Sundays ago, and half the music was a dismal effort at Gregorian chant. When we sang English hymns from the OCP hymnal, more people joined in.
          I have a writing project going where I visit the parishes of all the really correct and GIRM loving priests in the area. So far, I have witnessed a general lack of joy. If that is good Catholicism, then Chesterton was wrong when he celebrated the joy in Catholic lands.

          • newguy40

            Well, Fr. I think we’d likely disagree on our solutions to the crisis we are facting in the Church. With that said, I do want to thank you for your ministry. Without priests we wouldn’t be able to have the sacraments.
            Perhaps you percieve an outward lack of joy where there is a great interior life?
            The worst litugies and abuses I have had the misfortune of seeing first hand were in the most liberal parishes. There was alot of clapping, handshaking, laughing, unchaste clothing, plethora of “ministries of after Mass coffee and donuts”, armies of EMHC’s but not much preaching on sin, the real presence, 4 last things, the Holy Mother of God, Community of Saints, need for frequent confession, etc. But, again, I may be judging from outward appearances, like you.
            Outside of an EF, the most reverent OF Mass I have attended have been at a men’s religious community.

            • hombre111

              Thanks, new guy. I think the priest plays an important role in the joy we find in a parish. If he does not exude joy in his ministry, then maybe it rubs off. But there has to be more than that. I celebrated Mass for the Feast of the Assumption yesterday in a parish 100 miles away. I have been there before and my impression is that it is a very good parish, with really good people. The priest there is a joyful man who succeeded a parish that had endured about eighteen years under two priests who treated them badly. The first was liberal and the second quite conservative. The priest there now strikes me as conservative, but he has delegated a lot of responsibility and there are several good ministries going.
              Whenever I am at this parish, I see three separate communities. The evening Mass is non-demonstrative in every imaginable way, and is made up most of retired people. The morning Mass is jammed, and full of young families. They sing well, even though there is not much of a choir. The third Mass is in Spanish, a language I speak well. Whenever I celebrate with that community, I am reminded again that the “liturgy wars” are basically a battle among English speakers. The Spanish Mass is full of joy and energy, even though it starts at 7:00. The musicians are the best I have ever heard, and there a lot of good Hispanic church musicians in the valley were I live. This group is based around a prayer group, and it shows. Their music, consisting of guitars, a mandolin, and a strange instrument like cascading water, is magnificent. When I praise them, they say that the glory belongs to God. And the people singing blows the roof off the place. I am sure this would cause a lot of outrage among the readers of Crisis.

              • enness

                I do not believe those are the guitars they are complaining about. Spanish classical guitar, done well, is exquisite. It’s not the poor instrument’s fault — it’s the style. I’m happy to point this out to both factions.

                • hombre111

                  Mexicans, with their prayerful and magnificent music, are not into Spanish classical guitar. Like I said, the liturgy wars are an English speaker’s problem.

      • poetcomic1

        Altar stones containing the relics of saints were broken up and used to line a parking lot. Statues, with the feet worn bare from generations of the devout touching and kissing them – smashed and thrown in dumpsters. Rupture? How about irruption of the Satanic. Oh, please, tell me how it wasn’t ‘done right’.

        • hombre111

          The altar stone bit sounds a bit fishy because altar stones come one to an altar and are only about 6”x 6”, and so I cannot imagine them lining a parking lot. I did know one old pre-Vatican II Irish priest who wanted to build a bigger church, but the people resisted. So, he burned the church down. When somebody rescued the altar stone from the rubble, he tossed it back into the pile, breaking it. He and another pre-Vatican II Irish priest when on to burn down and replace two other churches. Not a church has burned since they died. Yes, the destruction of statues happened, but only in a couple of places in my diocese, and I considered it appalling. Most of the churches in my diocese have all statuary from the old days. The only thing different is the location of the altar, the loss of the Communion rail, and the location of the reconciliation room.
          In the meanwhile, in my own parishes, I generally left things where they were, with the tabernacle on the big altar, which remained intact, with its glorious marble decorations. When one of my bishops (appointed by Pope John Paul) ordered me to remove the tabernacle to a side altar, I told the people that passive aggression solved many problems. Sure enough, time was on my side and the bishop went on to greater things.

          • enness

            Wow, what a great message they learned from you. /sarc

      • Alecto

        If you were so disgusted, why did you continue on in the seminary? Mr. it’s priests like you who disgusted so many Catholics, they deserted the Church. You couldn’t convert the modern day equivalent of St. Thomas!

        • Adam__Baum

          Because, in spite of protesting against a “hermetically sealed” Church, he relied upon it’s walls, burrowing inside to feed on it, parasitically. To be a priest in 1964 promised instant and substantial respect and an assured income, in the less forgiving secular world, insubordination, especially public insubordination would be met with “you’re fired”.

        • hombre111

          Good question, Alecto. I continued on in the seminary because I wanted to follow Jesus and loved the Church. By the Church, I do not mean the pointy heads who imagine all the answers have been given and digested. I mean the ordinary people whom I served with all my love and energy. I was with them in joy and sorrow. I knew their kids by name. I tried to get them to love God, their parish, and their community. Mostly, I kept my opinion about the bean-bags at the top to myself. I faithfully did everything the Church ever asked. And the people in my parishes did not desert the Church. Now I go to some of the old places to celebrate my fiftieth, and the good faithful people show up with their kids and grandkids.

      • Deacon Ed Peitler

        Was wondering, Father, if you are still active in ministry and if so which diocese.

        • Adam__Baum

          Could it be he has an apostolate publishing his memoirs of insidious rebellion pseudonymously?

        • hombre111

          Dear Deacon Peitler, I don’t think any old priest ever stops doing ministry. I am available for fill-ins, such as today, on the Assumption, I will drive 200 miles round trip to fill in at a wonderful little parish, in both English and Spanish. I am involved in prison ministry at a penitentiary complex, where I say Mass for male and female prisoners. We are planning a day of reflection in the medium security men’s prison, and an afternoon of prayer and healing at the women’s prison. . By the way, the confessions I hear in the prisons leave me stunned. I also work on Retrouvaille.
          I work in a sprawling rural diocese in the West.

          • Deacon Ed Peitler

            May God bless your ministry and hold you fondly in His heart. Your ministry has spanned some of the more tumultuous times of the Church. That you remained faithful to Christ and His Church is to be commended.

      • Art Deco

        It is a pity your faculties were not removed.

        • hombre111

          Why would they be removed? I treated my people with love and compassion. I did everything the Church ever asked. I was defiant or disobedient to nobody.

          • Art Deco

            Because the priest must teach, sanctify, and govern and your insipid complaints reveal little inclination to do any of that and a considerable inclination to be a cloying pest.

            • Deacon Ed Peitler

              In all things, charity.

              • Art Deco

                Hombre111 utters nonsense about the episcopate, has nothing to say about the mess of contemporary liturgy other than to praise OCrap Press, pisses on Gregorian Chant (which you hardly ever hear in Churches), blows his own horn about his ‘love and compassion’, kvetches about the pre-conciliar Church (which had an institutional vigor and elan which would be unimaginable today), kvetches about his time in the seminary, and seems to fancy we would all be better off if the Catholic Church were more like American Anglicanism (except the hymnody in Anglican congregations is far superior to what you find in contemporary Catholic congregations – no Anglican vicar, vestry, or choirmaster would ever tolerate Ocrap Press). Oh, and the grand-kids love him.

                Unfortunately, Hombre111 types are a dime a dozen in the contemporary clergy and a malignancy on the institutional Church.

                • enness

                  Okay, apparently I’ve reached the end of my agreement with you too. Is it that hard for people to admit that perhaps, just perhaps, all was not *so* perfect in their rosy-tinted Golden Age?

    • rodlarocque1931

      If people spent more time talking about how to be holy and less about downgrading morals and discipline in the Church, we might actually have some saints around to inspire the world to repentence.
      The confusion in the Church is continuing because Vatican II needs to be clarified and authoritatively shown (demonstrated) to be in continuity with tradition.
      Also we need another Syllabus of Modern Errors, condemning the new manifestations of the old heresy -modernism.
      With this done things will calm down and the faithful will return to being engaged with the Church because it will have restored its credibility.

      • Ralphster

        And just how is it going to be demonstrated that Second Vatican is in continuity with tradition, rodlarocque1931, when elements of it clearly are not?

        • rodlarocque1931

          I agree, those elements that can’t be reconciled must be ignored, or better yet just dump the whole thing.

    • WRBaker

      Fingers can be pointed at many persons and in many ways….
      Like it or not, Vatican II set the tone and did not set out a comprehensive plan for its implementation. Result: many priests, religious and laity immendiately left the Church.
      As a result, religious training became “loose” and not doctrinally sound in many cases (e.g., a priest not knowing what the Sins the Cry to Heaven for Vengeance are or where it is to be found); “Kumbaya” became a hit; Gregorian chant and Latin don’t have pride of place; churches became Protestant-looking (inside and out); children of multi-generations don’t know their Faith (and can’t defend it); Catholic school suffer from an unconvinced laity who teach quasi-Catholicism; many more of the laity continue to leave; bishops have become career politicians and rarely exercise their teaching authority; etc.
      When will this stop?

    • ColdStanding

      Ah! The next big social movement that will come about is women seeking reparations from men, not on an individual basis but as a class (the punitive Man Tax following the model of historical grievance settlements such as native land claims, not alimony), on the basis that women were “forced/tricked/duped” into a coercive social system that discriminated on the basis of sex. This has had a trial balloon version already where one of the charges leveled against the breakaway Mormon polygamists in Bounty, BC is that they would get together and “trade” daughters.

      Oppression thy name is marriage.

      What tipped me off was dear Helmut’s disdain at having to speak to Tom Piatak (eek! A man! A Catholic! Gross!) and his fawning, as Tom Piatak presents it, response to the woman (falsely claiming to be) priests.

      Married men, seeing as there isn’t REALLY any such thing as marriage (it’s a social construct, so goes the “reasoning”), will be classed as the equivalent of Southern slave owners that have treated their wives as property. Should this Man Tax be foisted upon our nations, it lead to a greater

      • Alecto

        Agreed, and your share is $25,476,350.93. When can I expect payment?

        • ColdStanding

          Well, now we know what you are. Now it’s just a question of haggling over the price.

          • Alecto

            Well, General Lafayette said about men like you that, “a good memory is a poor man’s substitute for wit.” LOL

            • ColdStanding

              Meh, I’m OK with that.

              • slainte

                You and Alecto sound like an old married couple.
                I am now ducking for cover!

        • Adam__Baum

          You should present your claim to the nearest Federal Reserve, before they stop monetizing debts issued by borrowers lacking capacity.

    • Patty

      Shuller is the same force, wanting to transform theCatholicChurch…=ing Obama’s transformation of the United States of America. I know there’ll always be these authoritarians descending upon Jesus’ teachings and our Church and in knowing this we
      all must pray&fast for the constant take-down of the true Catholic Church Jesus intended.
      Satan comes through loud & clear in these very vain bloviators. The great fight against
      it is our Holy Rosary…as Mary so sweetly asked us to pray for multiple years,now.
      LET US PRAY !

    • annieelf

      Foolish man. He wants his cake and to eat it too. All the things he wants exist elsewhere. He doesn’t want to change the Church so much as to reduce it to the heap of rubble that already exists in the world. The point is to take away hope. Destroy the Church and hope is gone.

    • JoFro

      I do not get it about people like Schuller – if a Catholic-lite Protestant church like the Episcopalians is struggling to keep its membership from falling after doing everything that Mr Schuller is demanding the Catholic Church do, why would it be any different for the Catholic Church itself?

      Without any of those changes, the Catholic Church is dying but none of the changes Mr Schuller demands be made is going to help the Church from losing members as evidenced by the falling numbers of the mainline Christian denominations!

      Are people like Mr Schuller just blind or just seriously dense? It’s not like this is a hidden statistic!

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    • roxwyfe

      The phrase “separation of church and state” only appeared in a personal letter written by Thomas Jefferson. It is NOT in the constitution (although many, if not most, people believe it is) and should have no bearing whatsoever in setting policy.

      If these folks find Liberal Protestantism so appealing, why not just join them? It’s easier to leave the True Faith than it is to try to reverse so many decades of accurate, biblical teaching, isn’t it? Oh, wait, I forgot! Jesus must have been incorrect in most of what He said because He was not in possession of the current “politically correct” mentality. How silly of me.

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    • Art Deco

      The man’s ordinary is Cdl. Schonborn. We live in a decadent era.

      • thecommentator

        “The man’s ordinary is Cdl. Schonborn.” –> Now it clear why he was not excommunicated…

    • Gail Finke

      He was here recently too. I run a online list of Catholic events in our region (not just our diocese) and I didn’t hear about it until afterward — seems it was only advertised to the sort of people who already attend that sort of thing. The group sponsoring or partly sponsoring it is called “Voices Speaking,” another ironic detail as they make no effort that I’m aware of to let anyone except themselves know they exist. “Dialogue” seems to be very important to so many of these groups (LCWR, anyone?) but, as you point out, to them “dialogue” seems to mean “I talk and you agree.”

    • RadTrad9377

      “I tell you — it’s no use arguing with a [liberal Protestant]. It’s no good trying to convert a [liberal Protestant] or persuade him. You can only deal with him on the following basis… you can only do it by having superior force on your side on the matter in question — and they must also be convinced that you will use — you will not hesitate to use — those forces, if necessary, in the most ruthless manner. You have not only to convince the [liberal Protestant] that you have a superior force — that they are confronted by superior force — but that you are not restrained by any moral consideration, if the case arose, from using that force with complete material ruthlessness. And that is the greatest chance of peace, the surest road to peace.”

      – paraphrased from a Winston Churchill, speech, New York, March 25, 1949.

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