And with that statement, whatever respect; whatever credibility; whatever naive and idealistic notion that I retained that this man had even an ounce of Charity, of compassion, even of true Catholicism, was blown away. Much like how the liberal Democrats must have felt in the early wee hours of Wednesday, November 9th, such was my Soul shaken to its inner core when I got home from work Friday evening and clicked on the news on my laptop. There it was, straight from the lips of the leader of the Roman Catholic Church. I won't here speak of the desolation and sadness that engulfed me, though I continued on about my business of making supper for my son and myself. But it was there nevertheless and could not be disavowed, no matter how hard I tried. The hard truth suddenly revealed itself to me and I had to acknowledge the basic, stark reality:
Pope Francis, the leader of the Roman Catholic Church of Our Lord Jesus Christ on earth, just disenfranchised and marginalized that core group of Faithful Catholics who practice their faith - including the unwavering allegiance to Rome and to himself - as it was instituted and promulgated by Christ, His Apostles, and every Pope before Francis.
In a Church gone mad; in a Church that sees (and has seen) declines across the board in just about every statistical category that is tracked; in a Church that continues with the auto-destruction of the 6th and 9th Commandments through Papal fiat; in a Church that has seen (and will continue to see) yearly growth in only two sectors - Traditional Catholicism and the Tridentine Mass, the person charged and entrusted with its guardianship has thumbed his nose at Traditional Catholics and all they hold fast to. He has effectively said that he doesn't give a rats-ass about them; definitely stated that they must change and leave behind 2,000 years of Tradition in favor of his visonary idealistic brand of catholicism or they ain't worth diddly squat; assuredly believes that Traditional Catholics are "out of full communion".
Sadness doesn't even begin to describe it. Abandoned is the more accurate word, He has abandoned probably the largest of his flock; left them to the wolves; left them to continue to wander around to find the Immemorial Mass, the only Mass that fills the void in a Soul left soulless by the Faith-wrecking policies and ideologies of Vatican II. They are now left to continue to rebuild on their own the Faith of their Fathers, Mothers, Aunts, Uncles and Grandparents. They can expect no help from Rome and its current CEO.
SSPX beware! ICK beware! FSSP beware!
It should now be apparent to all Traditional Catholics that no priest, bishop or cardinal - and especially not this pope - that ascribes to the fullness of the "new dawn" of Vatican II will ever think of them as anything but a bastard child, needing to be nurtured only to keep them from starving to death. Hence, a little crumb of a once-monthly Tridentine Mass "community" here; the use of a fallen-into-disrepair church there. I know there are diocese worldwide - and especially so in the USA - whose Bishops actively promote the return of the Traditional Rite in their diocese - the EF and the OF on equal footing. But nor am I afraid to state that they are just that - exceptions. If it is not the exception, then both forms would be taught in every seminary worldwide, and every seminarian would be bound to say both forms after their Ordination. But they are not, though I am open to correction on this if I am wrong. Until then, I stand by the statement.
No...I am not going rogue Catholic. Not turning sedevacantist. Not naming myself Pope, as some have done. Francis is still the valid Pope to whom I am conscience bound to support, obey and pray for. But relative to the support and obey factors, only when he follows what Our Lord, the previous 265 Popes and the Church, including Vatican II (when itself follows the former) have taught. When he promotes such as Amoris Laetitia, I am not bound by anything that departs from perennial Church teaching. In prayers for him, however, I am conscience-bound to do so and will never depart from that...he will always have my prayers at every Rosary and Mass.
But it doesn't mean I have to like him, his policies, his face or his constant berating of Faithful Catholics, whether lay or cleric. He alienates anything and everyone that doesn't follow his warped brand of Catholicism and has mishandled the Guardianship of the Body of Christ handed down to him. He doesn't have to be "my Pope", but he does have to be Christ's Pope - and right now he is neither. Nor apparently will he ever, judging by his past actions and words. His picture will remain prominently displayed on this blog as long as he has breath left in his body and prayers for his Soul will be asked for on these pages after his death. But it might now be harder to escape from the thoughts that he is deserving of neither, though please pray for me that they remain only that - passing thoughts and not an actual wilful desire. And pray especially so for Pope Francis, for the strength, courage and fortitude that he needs in governing Christ's Church on Earth.
Mary, help of Christians:Pray for us!
Deus, omnium fidelium pastor et rector,
O God, Shepherd and Ruler of all Thy faithful, look mercifully upon Thy servant Francis, whom Thou hast chosen as shepherd to preside over Thy Church: grant him, we beseech Thee, that, by word and example, he may edify those over whom he hath charge, so that together with the flock committed to him, he may attain everlasting life. Through Christ, our Lord. Amen.
Copyright 2016 David Heath - All Rights Reserved