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:: The Lidless Eye Inquisition ::

A weblog dedicated to the exposure of the crackpots of the lunatic self-styled 'traditionalist' fringe who disingenuously pose as faithful Catholics.
Welcome to The Lidless Eye Inquisition | bloghome
"Do not allow yourselves to be deceived by the cunning statements of those who persistently claim to wish to be with the Church, to love the Church, to fight so that people do not leave Her...But judge them by their works. If they despise the shepherds of the Church and even the Pope, if they attempt all means of evading their authority in order to elude their directives and judgments..., then about which Church do these men mean to speak? Certainly not about that established on the foundations of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus Himself as the cornerstone (Eph. 2:20)." [Pope St. Pius X: Allocution of May 10, 1909]

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[:::....Recent Posts....:::]

The revocation of indefinite suspension to this we...

Briefly on A Few Issues... Though the The Lidless...

As I am planning a return to blogging in other for...

Though this weblog has been suspended "in perpetui...

After pondering this in recent days, I cannot thin...

Points to Ponder: I now come to the positive reas...

"One From the Drafting Board" Dept. The material ...

Before this weblog is formally closed in perpetuit...

On Altar Girls and General Norms of Interpretation...

Final Reflections I would like to thank Shawn McE...

The Inquisitors
:: I. Shawn McElhinney
:: F. John Loughnan
:: Peter J. Vere JCL
:: Greg Mockeridge
:: Apolonio Latar
:: Gregory Rossi
:: Keith Kenney
:: The Curmudgeon
:: Mark Bonocore
:: Gregg the Obscure
Affiliated Weblogs/Websites
:: Rerum Novarum [>>>]
:: Sean O' Lachtnain's Home Page [>>>]
:: Envoy Encore Weblog (Peter Vere JCL, contributor) [>>>]
:: Cooperatores Veritatis [>>>]
:: Thoughts of Apolonio Latar III [>>>]
:: Sancta Liturgia [>>>]
:: Disturber of the Peace [>>>]
:: Vita Brevis [>>>]
Specialty Weblogs
:: The (New) Catholic Light BLOG (Peter Vere JCL, contributor) [>>>]
:: John Betts' Boycott BLOG [>>>]
Ecumenical Jihad*
:: Apolonio Latar and Kevin Tierney's Culture of Christ BLOG [>>>]
Specialty Weblinks
:: A Prescription Against 'Traditionalism' [>>>]
:: On the Intricacies of Dialogue - A Commentary [>>>]
:: The 'Tradition is Opposed to Novelty' Canard [>>>]
:: On Assisi and Catholic Principles [>>>]
:: F. John Loughnan's "Classification of Some Integrist (Lidless Eye) Websites" [>>>]
:: A Syllabus of Various (Mostly Pseudo-"Progressivist") Dissenting Authors [>>>]
:: A Canonical History of the Lefevrist Schism - Peter J. Vere's License Thesis From Saint Paul University, Ontario, Canada [>>>]
:: What Makes Us Catholic Traditionalists - written for The Wanderer December 6, 2001 (I. Shawn McElhinney/Pete Vere JCL) [>>>]
:: Yes Virginia, Fr. Nicholas Has Been Suspended - written for The Wanderer March 6, 2003 (Pete Vere JCL/I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Squelching Fr. Gruner's 'Squawking Squire' [>>>]
:: RadTrad Watch [>>>]
:: Antisemitism and the Catholic Right [>>>]
[:::....Site Intention, Disclaimer, Copyright, Etc....:::]
:: Intentions of this Weblog (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Weblog "War and Peace Length" Disclaimer (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Site Copyright (I. Shawn McElhinney/SecretAgentMan) [>>>]
:: Exhortation to Those Who Participate in the Message Boxes (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On Linking to Tridentine Apostolates, Etc. --A Lidless Eye Inquisition Clarification Thread (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
[:::....Heretical Pseudo "Traditionalist" Apostolates....:::]
Mario Derksen's Catholic Insight
:: Responses to Mario Derksen--Parts I-III (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Mario on EENS (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Mario Derksen's Errors on Man (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Mario Derksen's Sedevacantism--Parts I-III (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Response to Mario --Parts I-II (Kevin Byrne) [>>>]
:: Mario's Sedevacantism and His Conscience (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder -I. Shawn McElhinney's Discussion List Comments on the "Karol Wojtyla is the Pope" Subject (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
Gerry Matatics' Apostolate
:: Gerry Matatics Too Hard Line For The Remnant (Pete Vere)[>>>]
:: Concerning Gerry Matatics and His Alleged Sedevacantism (Pete Vere) [>>>]
[:::....Schismatic and Theologically Specious Pseudo "Traditionalist" Apostolates....:::]
Catholic Apologetics International (or CAItanic)
:: Bob Sungenis' "Reply" to Richard John Neuhaus --Parts I-II (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - Richard J. Neuhaus on CAItanic (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On CAItanic and the "Petrification" of their Opponents (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: On Stunted Ecclesiology and Other Examples of the Arrested Development of CAItanic (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Baghdad Bob Meets Bible Bob (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: Commentary on CAItanic (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Sungenis/Ferrara and Double Standards (Apolonio Latar III) [>>>]
:: On Sungenis’ “Novelty”--Parts I-II(Apolonio Latar III) [>>>]
:: A Short Response to John Salza and Sungenis (Apolonio Latar III) [>>>]
:: A Brief Clarification by Your Weblog Host On "Mr. Ipse Dixit" (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Matatics vs. Sungenis (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Sungenis and God's Contingent Knowledge--Parts I-II (Apolonio Latar III) [>>>]
:: On "The Big Bang Theory" and its Pertinance to Catholic Doctrine (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
The Novus Ordo Watch
:: On "Novus Ordo Watch" (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: More on "Novus Ordo Watch" (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: Props to David Alexander (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
The Remnant
:: Beyond Lunacy (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: The Remnant Gets it Right (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: Commending Christopher Ferrara (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
The Society of St. Pius X (SSPX)
:: Points to Ponder - on the SSPX (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: On the "Reconciliation" Rumours of the SSPX (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: SSPX Demotes Key Priest Hoping For Reconciliation (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Three Cheers for Sedevacantism (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: On Fr. Paul Aulagnier (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Schism For One Dollar (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Bishop Rifan the Prophet (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Is the SSPX Still Lefebvrist? (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Civil War Breaks Out in the SSPX's French District (Pete Vere) [>>>]
[:::....Controverted Apostolates...:::]
Kevin Tierney and His Apostolate
:: Responding to Kevin Tierney's Criticism (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: Some Brief Comments on Kevin Tierney's Response to Gregg the Obscure (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: A Response to Kevin Tierney's Response to I. Shawn McElhinney (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: More Sophistry From Kevin Tierney --Parts I-II (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Briefly on Obedience and Kevin Tierney's Appeal to Canon Law 212 (I. Shawn McElhinney/Pete Vere JCL) [>>>]
:: Responsum ad Tiernam Dubiosum --Parts I-III, Addendum (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: A Note About A Blog (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Radtrads Again (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: On True and False 'Traditionalism' With Kevin Tierney --Parts I-VII (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Pope John XXIII, Pacem in Terris, and Global Government --Parts I-III(Greg Mockeridge) [>>>]
:: Clarification on Global Government (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Brief Response to Kevin Tierney (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Miscellaneous Musings on Diversity (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: An Example of the Honesty That Must Accompany Dialogue (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Miscellaneous Muttering On Many Subjects (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: A Detailed Response to Kevin on The Revised Missal, Corpus Christi, Church Attendance, Church Forms, Protocol 1411, Etc. (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Miscellaneous Musings (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: "Responsum ad Tiernum" Dept. (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Discussing the Liturgy and Various Contrastings With Kevin Tierney (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Refuting the “He’s Not Disobedient. He's Just Stupid.” Defense (Greg Mockeridge) [>>>]
:: "Responsum ad Tiernum" Dept. (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
[:::....Controverted Subjects and People in General....:::]
:: Response to a Self-styled "Traditionalist" (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On the Term "Inquisition" (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: Addressing a Sedevacantist Heretic (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: February's Quote of the Month (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: On TAN Books (F. John Loughnan) [>>>]
:: On Defining Modernism (Chris Burgwald) [>>>]
:: Refuting the Late 'Trad' Michael Malone's Errors on Vatican II (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From His Beatitude Melkite Patriarch Maximos IV Saigh, Cardinal of the Roman Church (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: The Catechism and Radical Traditionalists (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Screwtape Parody on Radical Traditionalism (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Dialogue With a Rad-Trad --Parts I-II (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: On Hell and the Catechism (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: On Sola Fide Trads (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Some Traddie Fallacies Examined (F. John Loughnan) [>>>]
:: Dialogue With Adrian a Self-styled 'Traditionalist' --Parts I-VIII (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From St. Opatus of Milve (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Mr. Smith's Misunderstandings --Parts I-VI (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On the Integralist-'Traditionalist' Conection --Parts I-V (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Discussion With Christopher Blosser on Reflections on Covenant and Mission (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On the Morality of Promoting Conspiracy Theories (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: Question About the Magisterium (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: John Paul II and Islam (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Have 'Traditionalists' Been Too Hard on the Pope Viz Islam (F. John Loughnan) [>>>]
:: A Conversation --Parts I-II (I. Shawn McElhinney/Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Fatal Flaws of False 'Traditionalism' With Albert Cipriani--Parts I-VII (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: A Conversation on Spiritual Maturity and the Traditional Catholic Approach to Difficulties --Parts I-III (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Is it Okay to Complain? (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Obedience: The Rise of True Catholics --Parts I-II (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Radtradism and Mother Teresa (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Common 'Traditionalist' Errors in Dogmatic Theology and the Ordinary Magisterum (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Notes on the Ordinary Magisterium (SecretAgentMan) [>>>]
:: Some Self-styled "Traditionalist" Mendacity (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Posting Rules for Radical 'Traditionalists' (The Curmudgeon) [>>>]
:: Thoughts on Radtradism (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Why Garrigou-Lagrange? (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: The Syllabus (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Refutation of Some Common Radtrad Misuses of Citations (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: The Errors of Michael Malone Revisited (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Confuting an Attempted Justification for Schism --Parts I-II (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Another Assisi? Parts I-II (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder -Maximus the Abbott as quoted by Pope Leo XIII in Satis Cognitum §13 (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Dialogue With a 'Traditionalist' (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: "To Be Deep in Catholic Theology is to Cease to Be a (Pseudo) 'Traditionalist'" Dept. (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From Pope Benedict XV (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On Charles de Nunzio (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: For Those Interested (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Refuting Mike's Errors (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: A Response to Mike Tucker (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Will it Merely Be More Uncatholic "Business As Usual"??? (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From St. John Bosco (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From St. Irenaeus of Lyons (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Dialogue/Debate on Pascendi (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - From Cardinal Ratzinger on the Revised Roman Missal (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Responsum ad Hibernius (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Miscellaneous Material (Gregory Rossi) [>>>]
:: On Liturgical Dance (Gregory Rossi) [>>>]
:: On Humanism (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: On Humanism and Vatican II (Gregory Rossi) [>>>]
:: John Paul II and Universalism (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: On Scruples (Gregory Rossi) [>>>]
:: On Tony Blair and Receiving Communion (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Confuting Radical Pseudo-'Traditionalist' Nonsense --Part I (Mark Bonocore) [>>>]
:: Confuting Radical Pseudo-'Traditionalist' Nonsense --Part II (Mark Bonocore/I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: "Wast-ing A-way A-gain in Se-de-vac-ant-a-ville" Dept. (Mark Bonocore/I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On the McElhinney Media Dictum (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Tomorrow Christendom (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Correcting a Common Misperception of This Weblog (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Response to a Guimaraes Article (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: A Response to Fr. Nitoglia (Apolonio Latar) [>>>]
:: More on "Tomorrow Christendom" (Dom Calvet/Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Surprised by Canon Law (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Briefly on Michael Davies' Passing (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: On Redemptionis Sacramentum and Canonical Implications for Ecclesia Dei (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Notification of Assisi Essay, Etc. (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Points to Ponder - Richard John Neuhaus on the Vatican and "Americanism"--Parts I-VI (I. Shawn McElhinney)[>>>]
:: 8 Things You Can Do to Stop the Judaizers (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: On Circumspection in Speech and Public Writing (Gregg the Obscure) [>>>]
:: On the Revised Missal Ordination Rites and Other Tidbits (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
::Points to Ponder - John Laux on an Interesting Parallel from History on the Subject of "Preserving Tradition" (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: In Fairness to Michael Forrest (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Michael Forrest and the Jews (Pete Vere) [>>>]
::Points to Ponder - Pope Gregory XVI on the Authority of the Popes (I. Shawn McElhinney)[>>>]
:: Michael Forrest and the Jews--Part II (Pete Vere) [>>>]
[:::....Miscellaneous Dialogual Subjects...:::]
:: Real Catholic Traditionalism (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: An Open Challenge to Catholic Traditionalists (Dom Gerard Calvet/Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Briefly on Quo Primum (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Traditionalist Debate of the Millenium: Pete Vere vs. Shawn McElhinney (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Dialogue on Ecclesia Dei With Mark Downey (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Sister Lucia of Fatima, Ora Pro Terri Schiavo (Pete Vere) [>>>]
:: Ecclesia Dei And Respect for Traditionalists (Greg Mockeridge) [>>>]
:: On "The Vile Spectacle of Traditionalists Rooting for Bad News" --Dialogue With Kevin Tierney (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>> [>>>]
:: On Liturgical Nonsense, Recent Restore Rants, Church Music, Etc (I. Shawn McElhinney)[>>>]
:: Briefly Revisiting an Old Subject (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Examining Kevin Tierney's "Catholic Contract" (I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
[:::....Guest Editorials...:::]
:: The Problems Some Have With Interfaith Outreach (Guest Editorial by Gary Gubinski) [>>>]
:: On the Liturgical Movement (Guest Editorial by the Society of St. John; Prologue by I. Shawn McElhinney) [>>>]
:: Jacinta's Vision (Guest Editorial by Fr. Thomas Carleton) [>>>]
:: Guest Editorial on Private Revelation (Kevin M. Tierney) [>>>]
Any correspondence will be presumed eligible for blogging unless the sender otherwise specifies (cf. Welborn Protocol)

*Ecumenical Jihad listing is for weblogs or websites which are either dedicated to or which to the webmaster (i) are worth reading and (ii) characteri ze in their general outlook the preservation of general Judeo-Christian morality and which are aimed at positively integrating these elements into society. (Such sites need not even be Catholic ones.)

As society has grown more estranged from its founding principles, I wish to note sites which share the same sentiments for the restoration of society even if the means advocated in this endeavour differ. The Lidless Eye Inquisition does not necessarily endorse particulars with sites under this heading.

:: Thursday, November 27, 2003 ::

Is the SSPX still Lefebvrist?

Earlier this week, an old (F)SSPX friend/foe surprised me with an invitation to participate in an on-line, multi-linguistic and multi-national discussion. Those invited included both current and former adherents to the (F)SSPX. The ground-rules were simple: 1) All participants had to have been with the (F)SSPX around the time of the illicit episcopal consecrations; 2) The usual polemic was to be suspended; 3) Everyone was to speak candidly. Having agreed to these ground-rules, I found the ensuing discussion quite interesting. It appears that a decent proportion of the SSPX "old blood" now questions whether or not the SSPX has remained faithful to the vision of Archbishop Lefebvre.

What fascinated me in particular was that the former SSPX adherents (like myself) for the most part answered "yes" (albeit reluctantly) while the current "old blood" SSPX adherents involved in this discussion for the most part answered "no". Regardless, everyone noted with irony that of Lefebvre's first class of seminarians ordained to the priesthood, none remain presbyters within the SSPX. Fr. Aulagnier was the last, and he has now been expelled. Everyone was also in substantial agreement that if the Archbishop returned from the dead, he would not recognize today's SSPX as his own.

The next question then was "What now?" I know some of the remaining SSPX old blood are organizing in hopes of taking back the SSPX and reclaiming its original vision. I sensed that these folks hoped that others who were around during the early days, but who subsequently left, would come back and help. There's a real worry that with the influx of EFNS'ers (basically a critical term for recent SSPX converts who never knew the Archbishop) the SSPX schism now threatens to become permanent.

As tempting as it sounds, I'm reminded of Our Lord's parrable in which He states we cannot look back once we set our shoulder to the plough-share. The fact of the matter is that Lefebvre had a choice in 1988 and he chose to illicitly consecrate bishops despite Rome's warning not to do so. Those like myself who left the SSPX to return to the Church cannot now look back at how things were before the schism. Lefebvre made his choice, and the rest of us now live with its consequences. The SSPX was never an end in itself, but rather the means to an end -- namely bringing about the preservation and restoration of the traditional liturgy. That being said, if the means are now broken, it is best to cast them aside in favor of whatever other means are available. To try and undertake the reform of a reform movement just seems futile.

:: Pete Vere 8:39 PM [+] | ::

:: Wednesday, November 26, 2003 ::
Epilogue to Response:

To read the post which this epilogue completes, please go HERE.

Shawn demands apology over Fatima inter-faith controversey

I was unaware that what I said constituted a "demand." It was more of an admonition than anything. But the reader can review that post and see if I actually "demanded" anything.

I'm sorry Shawn, but I really don't see where Traditionalists have been proven so wrong.

Several of them jumped on a story from a secular media source which had its facts wrong and used it as the latest cudgel in their latest shriek-fest. Those of us who were more cautious as Catholics should be were vindicated in the Vatican setting things straight. As usual, like the liberal media it is ignore the mistakes and move onto the next potential item to gripe about. At the very least your weblog was not as incautious as The Remnant was. However, you did invest trust in them as a reliable source. Compared to their trackrecord over the years, the Establishment press is darn near impeccable.

Let's point out a few things.

1.) The conference on the Present of Man and the Future of God is not something the Vatican is a total stranger to. Indeed, it is always one of it's chief participants in the UN forum. This is where the plan to change Fatima was formulated.

I doubt you have attended this conference or have any idea what was discussed there. The claim was that the shrine was going to be renovated. The so-called "traditionalists" claimed that it was going to be renovated into an interfaith shrine and this error was set straight by the Vatican sources. Thus far, not one of you has stepped forward and said "I overreacted and was wrong."

To say that everyone was just ignorant of this is flat out false, or makes them completely incompetent at knowing what is going on in their flock, not a very good sign for shepards.

See my previous comments.

(An Article in this Rock awhile back talked about the current Pontiff as perhaps one of the greatest teachers, but worst administrators the Church has ever seen. I've been pondering that, and I've come to see more and more truth to that.)

I presume you are referring to the essay from Fr. Brian Harrison OS. For the sake of being nice I will not note how Fr. Harrison whitewashes the past in not judging the historical predecessors of JP II that he claims were "great popes" with the same scrutiny that he does JP II. But that is neither here nor there.

Frankly, Pope Paul VI was a far worse administrator than JP II. Indeed if JP II had been pope at the end of the Council, I actually wonder if things would not have been a lot better than they were. Do not underestimate the shape the church was in when JP II was elected Kevin - it was in the worst shape since the sixteenth century. No one denies that there is still a lot to do but the Church is in so much better shape today than it was in the 1970's and even in the 1980's.

2.) The people and the Commission behind this statement were PRESENT AT THE CONFERENCE WHERE FATIMA WAS ANNOUNCED TO BE CHANGED! So if indeed the plan is on the shelf, it is only because of the furious backlash and shock, not because of any other reason.

The announcement of renovations is not on the shelf at all if I understand this correctly. But as the so-called "traditionalists" made the claims that the renovations would result in an "interfaith shrine." The Vatican sources made it clear that this is not what was intended. Big goof by the so-called "traditionalists" but they are not likely to apologize for their disgraceful handling of this situation unless they are shamed into doing it. That is traditionally what is "par for the course" in tradland unfortunately.

Traditionalists should feel proud is this is the case, since it showed just how powerful the voice of Tradition can be, since Traditionalists did much to discuss this issue, while Neo-Catholics stayed 100% silent.)

Faithful Catholics do not tend to react rashly at reports from secular sources.

3.) The rector of Fatima was at this conference, where these remarks were made, and he was in full support of them.

The shrine's rector was speaking at an interfaith conference. In case you are unaware, language in those settings is generally somewhat irenic. According to Archbishop Fitzgerald (also present at the meeting) the media accounts of what was said were misconstrued. See my previous post for the full story. The long and short of it was that you sided with Remnant and have egg on your face.

4.) Jacques Dupuis, the person who was "censured" by the CDF was preaching his blatantly heretical views at this conference.

How do you know what Jacques Dupuis was preaching at this conference??? Do you have a copy of his speech??? Just because he spoke at this conference does not mean that he was necessarily going over what he was censured for. Boy when St. Francis de Sales said that [t]he sin of rash judgments is a spiritual jaundice, which makes everything look amiss to those who have it he was not just whistling Dixie.

Unless you have a copy of the speech or a reasonable summary of it -or know someone who was there or who has these things- it is out of line to be making such presumptuous comments. Even heretics have the minimal right to be represented fairly Kevin. And if you do not know what Jacques Dupuis said -presuming for a moment that he is a heretic and not simply a theologically confused person- how are you fairly representing him in this situation???

This brings something to mind, why at a conference the Vatican does have some role in organizing is a man who is censured for his pluralism allowed to speak on this topic.

According to those who were present, the Vatican had no role in this conference's organization.

Even if the Vatican had nothing to do with helping to plan the UN conference, why is this man allowed to speak at Catholic events?

It was an interfaith event and thus not a solely "Catholic" one.

(Something at Fatima should be a Catholic event.)

The more non-Catholics we can attract to Fatima, the better it will be I believe. Archbishop Sheen once said that he believes that the conversion of the Muslims to the Catholic faith will likely be through the Fatima connections. I happen to agree with him. As far as the others go, there are elements of Fatima that resonate with those of a more mystical bent to their beliefs. But I digress.

5.) The rector says that while centered on Our Lady, this place must examine it's place in the inter-religious world. Well, Fatima talks about people NEEDING to convert to the Catholic faith. This simply cannot survive in an inter-religious context, and must go.

You of course are getting your information about what the rector "said" from Remnant.{1} They are about as reliable a source for accurate reporting as Weekly World News is. As far as conversion goes, the Church has always taught that conversion is in almost all cases a process and not an instantaneous event. Furthermore, conversion is an ongoing thing as repentance and renewal are with those of us who have "sinned and fallen short of the glory of God" (Romans iii,23). And the first ingredient to conversion is charity which includes the virtue of patience.

You do not like it when I take the (occasional) hardline approach towards the schismatic trads yet you seem to have no problem believing that this is the approach to take with non-Catholics. In the case of the occasional hardline approach I am merely giving them what they think non-Catholics deserve.{2} The difference is that I temper my occasional "casting down of fire" with a lot of understanding of their situations and difficulties -because I once walked that path myself.

And my approach to all dialogue is the same without question: the bigots get the firebolts and the Unam Sanctum treatment while those who are of good will and genuinely anguished receive the Unitatis Redintegratio or the Mystici Corporis Christi treatment. In both cases there are the occasional thorns in the flesh accompanying this approach but the approach is not one lacking in understanding But I digress.

6.) It talks about Fatima's "rennovation" to "modern times", an entire discussion in and of itself.

This is true but since we do not know precisely what the renovations will involve -except that the shrine will not be an interfaith shrine- we should not be making haphazard comments on it in the public forum lest we sin by bearing false witness -even if tacitly.

7.) Why was this plan put out there to begin with?

I have no idea.

Are you going to tell me noone in Rome knew about this? I again, find this hard to believe.

I would presume that the renovation project is not an unknown thing to Rome.

I don't really know what the exact answer is to these questions,

Nor do I.

but someone with Shawn's unbridled arrogance and glee in this posting should be able to answer these.

No comment.


{1} As you linked to their article saying these things at your weblog, this is why I make this assertion.

{2} And if we really get technical about it, they are probably more culpable for their schism than the average non-Catholic is.

:: Shawn 3:26 PM [+] | ::

A Detailed Response to Kevin:
(A Lidless Eye "Exclusive")

Diversity for Me, but not for Thee

I suppose I could title this response of mine "Ever Learning, and Never Attaining to the Knowledge of the Truth" Dept. but I will resist the temptation to do so{1} :) Being new to the "traditionalist" movement, Kevin is still to some extent in the "honeymoon phase" -something that no amount of reasonable argument will dissuade him from for some time to come.{2}

While I am not one to play the "youth card"{3} -having hated it when people did it to me in my younger days- I do believe that emotionally the lure of a supposed "stability" in this outlook is what most attracts young people to it -particularly converts. And while I could write pages on this subject, I will save the readers the type and keep my response here as brief as possible.

Another Round with Shawn

Shawn has responded to the "Inconsistencies to Ponder" post i made awhile back. No Shawn, this will not become a regular segment at Restore the Church, but was just a one-time ploy off of your regular segment at Rerum Novarum, some of which I will readily admit I like, and at times some good issues are raised and discussed. (Wow, Kevin actually likes some of Shawn's writings!

Wonders never cease ;-)

He didn't respond to much (being much wasn't written originally) so for once, this will be a rather short exchange. As Always, my original remarks are KT1. Shawn's Response is SME1. My rebuttal will be KT2.

There's not really much I'd like to comment on (me and Shawn exchange a few sarcastic blows to start things off) but he says something of substance here.

KT1: Furthermore, they talk of a pluralistic notion of the Church that history teaches us, in which I assume they mean the "unity in diversity." Sorry, but this entire argument is a fraud, simply because under the guise of plurality, Traditionalism certainly isn't allowed by today's Church!

SME1:Which of course explains why (to name one example) the Fraternity of St. Peter has grown so exponentially with numerous requests from local ordinaries who have gone from distrusting the Indult movement to actually supporting it...And there are other Indult apostolates as well with similar growth rates and increased acceptance by the local ordinaries. But of course all of this is a conspiracy I suppose to mask the fact that [t]raditionalism certainly isn't allowed by today's Church according to Kevin.

KT2: I really was hoping he wouldn't bring this out.

Yes mentioning the FSSP and the Inquisition members being supportive of its apostolate really does not fit well into the claims such as [t]he Lidless Eye Inquisition [assaults] "radical traditionalists" or that we ends up still attacking anybody who is not on the center or the left does it??? :)

The woefully inadequate political terms aside for a moment,{4} our support of apostolates such as these does not cater to the strawman image posited in several spots -even still on Kevin's website page as I write this. Obviously a bit of rhetoric is a fine spice but what I noted about correcting A1 oversights on A1 and not Q14 comes to mind as not being done here.

KT2: What was the name of that Protocol where Hoyos effectively gutted the original agreement the FSSP had with Rome Shawn?

I presume you are referring to Protocol 1411. This provision did nothing of the sort. What it *did* do (and does) is effectively smoke out the so-called "traditionalists" who pay lip service to the validity of the Revised Missal but in reality do not recognize its validity at all. Further still, it reinforces that (i) the Revised Missal -as the normative liturgy of the Catholic Church- does not require any permission to be celebrated and (ii) no superior of any religious apostolate can forbid their priests from celebrating this liturgy or from concelebration according to the Revised Missal should they desire to do so contrary to the erroneous presumptions otherwise by some within the FSSP and other apostolates. That is the "infamous" Protocol 1411 in a nutshell.

As a lot of prevaricating by supposedly "traditional" organization has taken place over this issue, it may help to recall these points in brief:

---There is nothing in Protocol 1411 that requires a priest to celebrate the Revised Missal.

---There is nothing in Protocol 1411 that requires a priest to concelebrate the Revised liturgy.

Protocol 1411 simply recognizes that all priests of the Catholic Church have the right to celebrate the Revised Missal -either in Latin or in the vernacular- and this right cannot be taken from them by any superiors of whatever rank and dignity they may happen to be. That is all.

KT2: Why is it the FSSP is allowed the Benediction in Washington DC, but not allowed to actually say Mass in some of the bigger chapels?

You will have to ask the local ordinary in Washington DC or perhaps the FSSP themselves. I do not know the answer nor am I inclined to presume that there are "evil machinations afoot" simply because a few points are at a glance troubling. I refer the readers back to the passage from St. Francis de Sales on rash judgment in this post. What is covered there anticipates in part your response to the mea culpa thread. (Something to be dealt with briefly in the epilogue to this post.)

KT2: I would also note a few things about increased acceptance. First, the Novus Ordo Liturgy has declining attendance, as many are sick and tired of the innovations and abuses.

Attendance had been reasonably consistent for a while now in most dioceses.

KT2: This isn't some schismatic speaking these claims, but the very heads of the Pontifiical Councils that deal with this subject!

Well, they are behind the curve on this one Kevin. Attendance levels since 1985 have remained pretty consistent though not nearly as high as they were in, say 1965. The major decline in attendance was prior to 1985 and embodied many reasons which cannot be dealt with in brief summaries. However, I did blog a short thread on this subject HERE and the explanation is the most plausable one I have heard out of many such explanations.

KT2: Many are beginning to call for something the Church is known for, stability. And in the Vatican II\post-Vatican II world, stability is something that simply does not exist.

Well, throughout most of history it did not exist. But with "security" comes both comfort in some areas and also discomfort in others.

For example, most of the two centuries prior to Vatican II were a period of increasing legalism, increasing centralization of church structures, increasing attempts to curb legitimate intellectual freedom, and a general increasing of isolation from the world.{5} When the Church again sought to confront the world, there was bound to be problems and there have been many. Thank God the worst of them appear to be behind us now.

KT2: Furthermore, many are merely accepting it out of a relativistc pluralistic notion of the liturgy.

Perhaps. It is also possible that they accept it much the way most people tend to accept any situation. Most people are not by nature leaders Kevin. This has always been the case and always will be. Further still, many people were able to be deceived for a long time about abuses which were veiled in invocations of the Council which were not only not warranted but were blatant prevarications.

Liturgical plurality is a matter of Church history. That some abuse this principle is not something I will deny; however just because a principle is not followed or undergoes abuse is not to say that the principle itself is not worthy.

KT2: They allow Gay Masses, Beach masses, folk Masses, Polish Masses, French masses, Spanish Masses, why not the Traditional one?

Well, the canard of THE Traditional Mass aside for a moment, I must ask why you are equating masses in various languages and with various forms of music -all of which is morally neutral- with the abomination of a "gay mass." This kind of incautious lumping of apples and oranges damages the vitality of your argument my friend.

KT2: Now I'm glad they're at least offering it, though at times the reasons are troubling. I of course attempt to avoid imputing ill motives, but with some statements and actions, one must be cautious at being TOO CHARITABLE to the point where reality is being denied.

This is true. I would recommend the principles outlined by St. Francis de Sales as quoted in my last post to you as a good template to follow. (It is certainly one of the ones I strive to follow.)

KT1:We live in a Church today where people are offended by the feast of CORPUS CHRISTI!

SME1:Not in my experience. Refresh my memory here, Corpus Christi is the feast celebrated the Sunday after Trinity Sunday right??? One of my confessors in fact preached on this subject if I recall correctly. I do not recall anyone getting up and leaving, I do not recall any protests, I do not recall a single person who afterwards expressed "offense" at this feast. But they all must have because, after all, people are offended by the feast so says Kevin...But that is okay because I know he means well.

KT2: Well, I hope Shawn ends the "Ready Fire Aim" Approach here, because he launched quite a salvo.

We shall see...

KT2: July 28, 2003, where Fr. John Perricone came under fire for using a little too much Latin, and the people objected to his reverent observance of Corpus Christi.

One example hardly justifies your blanket "people" assertion. Nonetheless, one example is better than none.

KT2: Surely Shawn remembers this story (though when you're so busy making excuses for everything, I guess you forget the occasional one, eh my friend. :-) )

I will accept in good humour the ribbing on "making excuses for everything." But as far as your facts go viz the story, let us look at them briefly.

First of all, it was not "people" as in a whole congregation (or even most of one Kevin), but instead some people. Apparently three dozen protesters picketed before and after a mass celebrated by Fr. John Perricone and attended by about 200 people. Whether any of those who picketed this mass attended it also is unknown by the article I read. Some of them may have attended another of Fr. Perricone's masses and then brought others with them to their little protest. They all may have attended the mass and protested before it and after it.{6} I do not know nor am I going to speculate on the matter in the absence of actual knowledge one way or the other. Nor for that matter should you.

Secondly, just because he used Latin does not mean that the mass was celebrated reverently. But that is even a minor matter in light of how the NY Times appears to completely confuse usage of Latin with the Tridentine liturgy.

I am used to the NYT and other media outlets making these kinds of errors -which they then either gloss over or correct in small type somewhere. But somehow many who identify themselves as "traditionalists" seem to think that the major media is accurate in reporting on these situations. This is something I honestly do not understand.

These same people would almost certainly not give the NYT blind trust to get other stories correct but any article which mentions "latin" and "mass" in the same article must be above such goofs.{7} Let us detail a Syllabus of Goofs in the article from the NYT on this situation:

The article starts off saying [t]he Rev. John A. Perricone, an erudite Roman Catholic priest who uses Latin phrases and refers to T. S. Eliot in conversation, is known nationally as leading proponent of the centuries-old Latin Mass, which was banished in favor of a more accessible service by the Second Vatican Council in the 1960's.

The errors in this paragraph are as follows:

---The Second Vatican Council did not banish the Latin usage from the mass.

---The Revised Missal is in Latin and actually was intended originally to be said at least partly in Latin. The vernacular pemission did not invalidate this intention in the slightest; ergo while almost all priests today use the vernacular, they are allowed to celebrate this liturgy in Latin (wholly or in part) without needing permission from the local ordinaries to do so.

A group of parishioners is enraged that in their view, the priest is imposing on them aspects of the traditional Latin Mass, called the Tridentine Mass after the Council of Trent in the 16th century.

More ignorance. I covered the Latin part of this earlier. Let us look at the other "features" they are referring to.

The protesters, though, faulted the priest for using too many elements from the old-style Mass. They said that he faced the altar instead of the congregation when he prepared communion, did not allow communicants to drink from the chalice; did not speak out loud for the consecration of the host; and did not allow lay ministers to deliver communion. Little of that was in evidence today, but parishioners said that was because reporters were present.


---My 1974 Daughters of St. Paul missal has many references to the priest "turning back towards the altar" in the rubrics because that was originally intended.{8} This was changed into an option later on but the priest facing the altar or the same direction as the congregation -though of course a licit and valid form- is not mandated by the Revised Missal by any means.

---Receiving communion from the chalice by anyone except the celebrating priest is not required. Though it is arguably preferable to communicate under both forms -as this expresses the full sign of the mass as instituted by Christ as both sacred meal and sacrifice-{9} it is not required to do so and Christ is not incompletely received sacramentally under only one form.

---Extraraordinary ministers are not requirements either. Indeed my 1974 missal says nothing at all about them. This is not to say that they should or should not be used but practically all churches -including my own- use too many of them. Whether Fr. Perricone should use some or not is not something I am qualified to comment on.

As far as the words of consecration go they are supposed to be proclaimed aloud in the Revised Missal rubrics. It is possible that the priest did this However, it is also possible that Fr. Perricone did speak them aloud but quieter than the parishoners were accustomed to. He also may have said them silently which would be contrary to the rubrics. I do not know and am inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt on this one.

I found this part of the text interesting:

[Fr. Perricone] added that he was well within modern boundaries in using the Latin phrase "corpus Christi" instead of "body of Christ" when delivering the eucharist, despite parishioners' complaints.

Again, if the Revised Missal can be said in Latin, so can the words for administering the Eucharist. Nonetheless, your exact words were [w]e live in a Church today where people are offended by the feast of CORPUS CHRISTI! Just because they did not like the use of the Latin does not mean that they were offended by the feast itself.

KT2: (It's only available for purchase off of New York Times online)

Then why did I acquire and read it without having to purchase it???

KT2: In the archives for this week at Restore The Church, both myself and Michael comment on this story. So not SO SAYS KEVIN. So says this was a fact!

I am not disputing the story nor even that you and Michael commented on it. What was disputed (and still is) was your broadbrush statement.

Again, your exact words were [w]e live in a Church today where people are offended by the feast of CORPUS CHRISTI! I see no evidence in the article that "the people" as a group or even as a majority were offended by the feast itself.

Assuming for a moment that all 36 people who protested before and after the mass also attended the mass, that constitutes about eighteen percent. If we grant that roughly three fourths of them actually attended the mass, that would be 27 people and approximately thirteen and a half percent. But whether eighteen percent, thirteen and a half percent, or even less, that hardly constitutes "the people" as in some majority as your statement in its broad sweeping indictment implied that it did.{10}

As far as the story goes, you have a bunch of people claiming that Fr. Perricone basically took a "we do it my way, if you do not like it leave" attitude and Fr. Perricone denying that he did this. If Fr. Perricone came in without advanced warning and started celebrating mass in a manner radically different than what the congregation was used to -without giving prior notice- then he is making the liturgy his own every bit as much as the priest who violates significant parts of the GIRM regularly.

It is difficult to know the intricacies of this situation simply on what the article says. And I will not allow sympathies for Fr. Perricone -or revulsion at the antics of those noted in the article-to result in me being one of those people whose judgment is solely formed by inclination; who always think well of those they like, and ill of those they dislike. As St. Francis de Sales notes, it is not a sign of spiritual health to do this.

KT2: As Mike said in commenting on this, everything seems allowed except God Forbid Corpus Christi.

I have not seen Mike's comments.

KT2: Now since I do have a factual basis for this, let's see if Shawn practices his oft quoted "Spiritual maturity" and retracts.

The readers can judge based on the glitches in your statement whether a retraction should take place on my part or yours. I remind the readers that even the claim that I had to pay for the article on your part was false. As for the rest, review the text above, my response to Kevin's original post, and even Kevin's original post.{11}

Those who try to look objectively will see that Kevin snatched defeat from the jaws of victory by having a reasonable point to make which he then shrouded in the standard self-styled "traditionalist" exaggeration which I was able to easily dispatch with. But I digress.

SME1:"I do not know very many Catholics whom I would say hate the past. But presumably because most of them are not interested in the form of Catholicism Kevin is... that must mean that they indeed hate it."

KT2: My Dear Shawn! I thought there were no "Forms of Catholicism" in particular to Benedict XV's remark! Remember, the one you kept on telling me I violate by talking about "forms of Catholicism?"

Sigh, more confusion of apples and oranges. Pope Benedict XV stated that there was no need to use qualifiers with regards to one's profession of Catholicism except "Christian is my name, Catholic is my surname" -a dictum which originated with Pacian of Barcelona in the fourth century if I recall correctly. This has nothing to do with various forms in which Catholicism has taken shape over the centuries.

Heck, the entire thrust of the dialogue I am having at Rerum Novarum with my Reformed friend Tim Enloe on the papacy is a classic example of what I mean by different "forms."{12} Tim's main objection to the papacy is that it underwent what he believes are fundamental changes starting around the time of Gregory VII. My arguments -and the one I am trying to get him to accept through persuasion- is that a lot of the objections that Protestants have with the papacy are based on particular forms of exercising the papal authority which are not intrinsic to the nature of the office.

Ironically, these same forms -which Pope John Paul II placed on the table of discussion in Ut Unum Sint- are precisely what the Remnant crowd in their theological obtuseness thinks is Pope John Paul II trying to "surrender the primacy."

Much as my friend Tim Enloe has done, the Remnant group is confusing a particular form of exercising the Petrine ministry with its essence. Likewise, there are forms in which the mass is and has been celebrated over the centuries, in which the sacraments are and have been administered over said centuries, in which the administration of the Church's dioceses are and have been administered over said centuries, in which doctrines are and have been explained over said centuries.

Church history shows quite variegated forms of Catholicism than what was present prior to the Second Vatican Council. (Itself a basic form which took shape after the Counter-reformation and particularly in the aftermath of the French Revolution.) You have confused the various adaptations of Catholicism according to various times, circumstances, and places (in short, various forms) with appelations of individuals trying to assert in some form or another that they were "The True Believers"™ ala what the self-styled "integralists" did in the early twentieth century and what today's self-styled "traditionalist" does in like manner. Again, it is apples and oranges my friend.

SME1: But as I noted previously when responding to Adam Kolasinski, with regards to Vatican II or any other council or papal pronouncement, all that is required is accepting the teaching set forth, not the opinions of the legislator on the merit of the teaching.

KT2: Of course, since noone really knows what Vatican II taught, or where Vatican II taught something dogmatically not taught before, noone really knows what to give assent to, other than that which was already taught before in Tradition.

Kevin, you are a lot smarter than this. First and foremost, all the teachings of the Council require at least a religious submission of mind and will. I do not have time to go into all or even many of the Council's teachings here -and on message board entries, in essays, and weblog entries I have done this for years. It requires a bit of effort but most people are not incapable of understanding what the Council taught on various points if they read the documents themselves and reflect upon what they say. They are all on the web and have been for a while so this is not difficult to do -even if it does take some time to do so.

For certain points where there is more difficulty, there are commentaries on different parts by not only myself but many other people as well. These can help with the informing on the matter. And of course the Catechism of the Catholic Church has over eight hundred references to the documents of Vatican II and is thus an invaluable guide for understanding the Council's teaching.

KT2: is there something new we must give assent to?

Yes there are some things new in Vatican II that require assent;{13} however most of what the Council taught was simply a reiteration of previous teachings. Nonetheless, there is nothing optional about the assent owed though the degree of assent on different points varies in accordance with the manifested intention of the Council following the norms of theological interpretation.{14}

KT2: Well that's about all in this post I really have to say to Shawn. I just ask him to please be consistent, if he's going to say we're guilty of "classifying forms of Catholicism" when attacking Neo-Catholicism, I will not allow him to do the same.

As this post demonstrates adequately enough, I am perfectly consistent. It is my friend Kevin who continues to go to the orange bin at the grocery store looking for apples :)

KT2: And hopefully a retraction of his snide remarks above RE: the Corpus Christi issue, since I have provided more than sufficient citation.

Again, the readers can judge whether Kevin's citation are adequate to sustain his original statements. Again, broadbrush statements are easily confuted. And Kevin likes to paint in large strokes a lot unlike the more detailed and less "impressionist" approaches of your weblog host.

KT2:(It's in the NYT on the said date, also available online, and 2 commentaries on it.)

Why should I care what other commentators have to say on it Kevin??? I am not incapable of thinking for myself and I do not need other people to "analyze" things for me. Further still, I do not trust the NYT and have not for as long as I can remember: they are a liberal rag with a blatant agenda and they frequently get their facts wrong. You seem oblivious to the fact that by bringing this story up you are playing right into their hand. Allow me to clue you in a bit on how they do things over at the NYT and in the Establishment press in general.

First of all, they love to paint the Catholic Church in as bad a light as they possibly can. Second of all, they love to exaggerate the number of people who support their agenda -either explicitly or implicitly- and downplay or ignore those who do not. Thus in politics (to name one example) if there were 500 protestors against the war, they would go to that site and interview a bunch of people and really claim that this was a "story." By contrast, if there was a rally in support of the war five times larger across town, they would either not mention it or at best talk to a couple of people whom they would then attempt to spin into a "few" or an "insigificant" rally. With the favoured protest, it would receive front and center coverage if there were not more important stories to cover.

By contrast the latter would be backburner stuff unless someone who opposed the supporters showed up and a melee broke out. Then it would be front page stuff to attempt to say (in part) "look at these neanderthals beating up a poor person who merely disagreed with them." The person in part could have ran in swinging and been restrained by the crowd but the self-defense of the people in the crowd would be construed as a violent attack.{15} More examples could be noted but I think the crux of my point is adequately elaborated here.

In summary, I do not trust the media in general and very few commentators have my respect. But that is beside the point. While I do like to read certain commentators, I do not in any sense rely on them to do my analysis for me. Nor do I accept uncritically the analysis of commentators I do trust or enjoy reading but lest I digress and make this post longer than it already is, I will terminate it at this point.

Please go HERE to read the Epilogue to this post.


{1} For the sake of economy I will at this time not do so.

{2} I say this because the human psyche does seek a "zone of comfort" intellectually, emotionally, and the like. When it thinks it finds one, it will settle in and will not be immediately moved from that zone -but indeed will try to find whatever justification it can for remaining in that zone rather than leaving it. This is not an indictment on Kevin personally but instead a brief observation on the human condition.

This is why most of us former self-styled "traditionalists" recognize that the time factor is on our side in this debate. This is not to diminish the numerous other points such as Church teaching, tradition, Church history, dogmatic theology, and the like. However, these are long range tools and seldom in the short run with new "converts" to so-called "traditionalism" will they have a significant effect. In the long run with plenty of inculcation they will of course among those who are of good-will. (That is the whole point I am making here in a nutshell.)

{3} Longtime followers of our threads will note that I have not at any time made Kevin's age a factor in assessing the solidity (or lack thereof) of his arguments. Nor is this post intending to do that either. I only mention it here because (i) this is a factor that he should consider as being not insignificant in his outlook viz the emotional aspect and (ii) in my own experience -both in hundreds of dialogues with various people and also in my own 'trad' experience- the emotiona laspect is the last bastion of holdout if you will in seeking to avoid reaching a conclusion that one does not want to reach. In my case, I was intellectually convinced for over a year before I left but it took a while for the emotions to catch up. (As I had been at the same church for almost fifteen years.) But I digress.

{4} See my post to the Rerum Novarum Miscellaneous BLOG from June 17th on this matter. Essentially what is noted there was marinating in my mind for not a few years though Kevin's challenge to provide definitions for true conservatism expedited my finally committing to writing the principles that I have long held in that regard -and continue to hold- thus providing a snapshot if you will into how I approach subjects. (Regardless of the particular field of study.)

{5} Under the pretense of the world simply being "too evil" and therefore people must be "shielded" from it. The Fathers and Doctors condemned this kind of Donatism every time it cropped up during times of turmoil -and indeed the Church's history has been a progression from one turmoil to another. But the Church at least historically was a leader in knowledge, education, societal advancement, and the like. In the Counter-reformation period -particularly after the French Revolution- she focused more inwardly. Not to sound too flippant about it but if the Church had taken this attitude throughout history, she never would have evangelized most of the world, brought down the Roman Empire, or even for that matter advanced outside of Jerusalem.

{6} It seems odd that they would protest *before* the mass unless they had already attended another of Fr. Perricone's masses and seen similar stuff. But then again, I have seen a lot of people making various kinds of protesting of stuff they do not understand. (Heck, self-styled "traditionalists" do it too but in differents areas.)

{7} Much as any survey conducted by secular minded people -or even by those with an agenda against the Catholic Church- is accepted as Gospel truth if it conforms to "the agenda."

{8} I just reviewed my missal rubrics and they conform to precisely what I have asserted here. The priest is said to face the people during what was traditionally called the "Orate Fratres." It is clear that prior to this, he is not facing the people when preparing the gifts. (Otherwise, it would be superfluous to claim that he is "facing the people" at the Orate Fratres if he was already doing so.)

{9} When Jesus instituted the Eucharist, he did so in the context of a Jewish Passover meal or Seder. The Seder in Our Lord's time was a sacrificial meal since in that meal the participants consumed a lamb that was a sacrificial victim the blood of which was offered to God in the Temple in Jerusalem. Furthermore, many experts consider the Seder to be an example of a Todah sacrifice, which in Old Testament times was often made to God in thanks for God's providence or in anticipation of deliverance from some threat. The Todah sacrifice was the only one in which the lay people who commissioned the sacrifice were permitted – in fact required – to partake of the flesh of the sacrificial victim. The word 'todah' in Hebrew means 'thanksgiving.' The Greek equivalent is 'eucharistia.' By its very nature therefore the Last Supper and the Mass, which is derived from it, represents a sacrificial meal, not merely a sacrifice. Overemphasis on the sacrificial aspect to the neglect of the meal aspect therefore detracts from what Our Lord was actually doing. [Dr. Art Sippo: The Sacrificial Emphasis in Eucharistic Prayer 2 (c. 2003)]

{10} I understand that in striving for economy of words that there is a limiting factor to some extent. However, broadbrush statements like this are easily confuted and thus the merits of your argument undermined as a result. This is akin to the "2000 years" moniker being attached to policies or outlooks of recent vintage -or to ancillary dogmas or doctines which developed as a result of earlier dogmas or doctrines.

{11} For some reason, Kevin's group weblog does not allow for linking to the individual posts. I am not sure if this is because (i) they do not want the individual posts linked to or not or (ii) if it is simply an accident in his weblog formatting. Or even if it is (iii) the platform I am using that prevents it. I have no problem linking to the posts of any other weblog so I am inclined to think it is one of the first two examples. Hopefully Kevin can settle this question one way or the other for us.

{12} I have had another response to Tim on the various forms of the papacy and various forms of philosophical and theological thought over the centuries in my notebook for about three weeks now. I will probably post it to Rerum Novarum later this week.

{13} There are areas where the Council (i) settled theological controversies, (ii) expressly manifested the intention to develop doctrine of previous popes (iii) manifested the intention to hand on continuity with past popes and councils doctrine pertaining to the deposit of faith. These are all areas which require a higher than normal degree of assent -though not the assent of faith.

The rest of the Council's teachings require religious submission which basically means internal and external submission with (i) no external controversion of the teachings and (ii) no undermining of them.

{14} A good rule of thumb is this: when in doubt about the theological qualification of a particular teaching, a religious submission of mind and will is adequate.

{15} This is what the media did with the Rodney King situation -and I told several people at the time that there was something key to the whole story that the media was not telling us. And when the riots broke out -and they aired the full undoctored film around 2 am while Los Angeles burned- "NostraShawnus" was proven correct again.

:: Shawn 3:00 PM [+] | ::

:: Tuesday, November 25, 2003 ::
Points to Ponder:
(On Declining Catholic Practice After Vatican II and its Most Logical Source)

[As I have no interest in receiving critical email about this entry challenging my fealty to Church teaching, if you have not read it yet, please read this brief prologue so that my reasons for posting this entry are not misunderstood. -ISM]

The conventional wisdom blamed the obviously declining Catholic practice on the Vatican Council, a position recently repeated by the Lord High Inquisitor, Cardinal Josef Ratzinger. In the late 1960's and early 1970's, three different groups of observers were arguing that the great mass of the "simple" faithful were shocked by the changes: conservative priests and bishops, reactionary journals like The Wanderer and The National Catholic Register, and the more liberal and radical journals like The National Catholic Reporter and Commonweal.

The former two groups claimed to be protecting the poor, simple laity and argued that there was an obligation on the part of the church to slow down the pace of change in order that said poor simple laity would not be any more shocked than they already were. In the case of the Catholic liberals, there was a certain snobbishness -snobbery is the vice of Catholic liberals: we who are Commonweal or the National Catholic Reporter readers understand the changes and approve of them but the ordinary folks out in the pews -hardhat, conservative, chauvinist hawks- do not understand the changes and are against them.

I thought these commentaries on the Vatican Council were wrong and subscribed then to what I called then the "meat on Friday" theory - you make it alright for people to eat meat on Friday and they will feel less obligated to follow the other rules. The decline in church attendance and other observable forms of religious behaviour, it seemed to me, was the decline in respect for rules, but not the result of opposition to the Council.

There was no support for a Conciliar explanation for the decline in our data. Three quarters of the Catholic laity approved of the Vatican Council changes, seven-eighths approved of the English liturgy. Moreover, three quarters could accept the idea of a married clergy and half actually supported optional celibacy. A little less than half (at that time) supported the ordination of women. At all age levels, there was majority support for the Vatican Council changes -even 60 percent support among those who were over sixty years old. Most of the laity, therefore, approved of a changing Church...

Moreover, support for the changes instituted by the Council correlated positively with religious devotion: those who approved of the changes were more rather than less devout -so much for my "meat on Friday" theory. I began to hunt for an alternative explanation. Could it be that what so many of us considered a post-Conciliar decline in the Church attendance and religious devotion was in fact a post-encyclical decline?

Suddenly, the pieces of the puzzle began falling into place.

We were able to compare the birth control attitudes of the Catholic population in 1963 with those in 1974 and demonstrate that while in 1963 about half of American Catholics accepted the birth control teaching, ten years later this had declined to less than 15 percent. Moreover, acceptance of Papal authority in these matters had declined almost as precipitously. Finally, by a complex social change model, we were able to demonstrate the decline in Catholic practice between 1963 and 1974 -a decline of 20 percentage points in Sunday church attendance -was the result not of the Vatican Council but of the birth control encyclical.

All the changes in Catholic religious behavior -church attendance, support for vocations, Sunday contributions- could be accounted for in our social change model by the decline in the acceptance of Papal authority and Papal birth control teaching. The model indicated that the Council itself had been a huge success and that left to itself would have led to an increase in Catholic religious practice...[T]he positive change brought about by the Council was cancelled by the negative reaction to the birth control encyclical...

We quickly found supporting data from other studies. Between the end of the Council and the issuing of the encyclical, the Gallup measure of church attendance ("Did you attend church last week?") fell only 1 percentage point. Between the encyclical and 1973 it fell 11 percentage points. Later we noted that between 1973 and 1985, the net decline has been only 3 more percentage points.

Moreoever, in 1965, 28 percent of the Catholics and 50 percent of the Protestants in the Gallup data said they though the Church was losing influence in American society. In 1968, the year of the encyclical, the percentage increased 9 percent points for Protestants and 34 percentage points for Catholics. By 1974, with the war winding down, the percent thinking the Church was losing influence had declined to 52 percent for Protestants but remained at 59 percent for Catholics. In ten years Catholic opinion about the waning Church influence had increased from 28 percent to 59 percent. Protestant change had been from 50 to 52 percent

Something had happened to American Catholics during that decade that had not happened to American Protestants. That... encyclical. [Andrew Greeley: Confessions of a Parish Priest - An Autobiography Chapter 18, pgs. 358-360; 362-363 (c. 1986)]

:: Shawn 9:04 PM [+] | ::

A Brief Prologue to an Upcoming "Points to Ponder" Installment:

I have for so long not wanted to go over the subject that will be discussed in that installment because it involves using statistics in argumentation. As longtime readers of my writings -be they longer treatises, the shorter (by comparison) essays, certain weblog entries, or some of my essays in print periodicals{1} are not unaware, my view of argumentum ad statisticum is one of profound criticism.

Part of the reason is because I know how easily statistics can be manipulated -having been utilized as a pawn in that process myself by pollsters more than once.{2} Nonetheless, sometimes it becomes necessary to address people's arguments "on their own turf" and as declining mass attendance is one of the ancillary comments in a response currently being drafted, I want to address the true origin of the declining mass attendance.

The difficulty in doing this is that I do not want to come across doubting or denying the truth of the teaching most responsible for this turn of events -or the trackrecord that enabled attendance to stabilize and even increase a bit in the post Paul VI-pre-2002 period{3} -not counting the sharp spike upward after September 11th of 2001.{4}

I will not say that I have been completely free of intellectual difficulties with the teaching to be noted; however, religious submission compels me to not talk about that aspect publicly. (Though in private correspondence or on private lists I have made deferential comments outlining some aspects of this.){5}

Anyway, my reason for this preface is to clarify in advance what I know would be opined in some quarters if I posted that excerpt without personal comment. And as I prefer to let the points to ponder segments speak for themselves whenever possible, I do not want to diverge from my norm in that regard with the next installment to that series. Hence this brief prologue to that installment which will be posted next and linked to the bottom of this post at the part which is in bold print.

Please click HERE to read the installment referred to above.


{1} My most recent piece for the Our Sunday Visitor periodical The Catholic Answer -cowritten with fellow Lidless Eye Inquisitor Pete Vere- also explicitly noted this disapproval using the famous dictum of Samuel Clemens.

{2} And every time I was livid about it.

{3} Church attendance did fall last year but one does not have to be a rocket scientist to know the primary reasons why.

{4} As most of this increase was temporary, including it in the figures for the 2002 decline is one example of many of how statistics can be manipulated.

{5} I would not even note this publicly except there are some people who email me or who enunciate in divers ways publicly that I am some kind of "know it all." (Or at least circulate the view that *I* think that I am.)

I suppose when one does not run around pontificating on every subject under the sun -preferring instead to save authoritative statements for what I do know and more cautious or less authoritative ones for where my knowledge is not as extensive- it is easy to come across in that manner -particularly to those whose judgment tends to be not well informed by the principles of traditional Catholic spiritual instruction. But I digress...

:: Shawn 3:35 PM [+] | ::

:: Sunday, November 23, 2003 ::
Bishop Rifan the Prophet

Over the past week, a number of traditionalist readers have asked me what happened with Fr. Aulagnier and the SSPX. Well, Fr. Aulagnier attended this year's CIEL colloquium in France, which took place this past weekend. As CIEL (not to be confused with ICEL) is probably the most respected lay traditionalist and scholarly traditionalist organization, I consider this a good sign. Which takes me back to Bishop Rifan's following predictions in the May 6 issue of La Nef (a publication which, in my opinion, is the best traditional Catholic magazine on the market) has now played out. For those who do not read French, here's a loose and unofficial translation of the first couple of paragraphs:


La Nef: How do you see the future of the SSPX and an agreement with Rome? Does it still seem possible?

Bishop Rifan: Certain priests of the the SSPX desire an agreement with Rome, but visibly not those in charge. Sadly, the SSPX sought to conserve its unity by fear. Certain priests, who approve of us, write to us, but they do so in secret because it is very dangerous to be in disagreement with the superiors of the SSPX. We can critique the pope quietly, but not the superiors of the SSPX.... And there are punishments for all those who, publicly, diverge from the official line: Fr. Aulagnier was reduced to complete silence and exiled to Canada for having approved of our Apostolic Administration and for having attended my episcopal consecration.

Opposition towards the Holy See is each time more hard and more radical. Bishop Williamson has written that we should not offer public or official veneration to St. Padre Pio, in order not to give any credit to the canonizations made by the Pope (Williamson's newletter of December 2002). And Fr. Peter Scott, the rector in Australia, in his public letter of Nov. 1st 2002, wrote to friends and benefactors about the Luminous Mysteries proposed by the Pope: "I ask of you, if you wish to remain Catholic and if you wish to have a truly supernatural interior life, to not eve think of praying these mysteries." (Pete's Note: This is my personal translation back from the French of what was likely first written in English. If someone has the original English words, please pass them along to me.)

In line with this directive, the most logical ones arrive at sedevacantism, like Fr. Basilo Meramo, prior of the SSPX in Bogota, who wrote: "The Pope, with his errors and his heresies, and with all manner of doctrinal and governing action, does not give the guarantee of being the legitimate successor of the Chair of Peter..."


With this in mind, I think more and more we're seeing that the expulsion of Fr. Aulagnier (who co-founded the SSPX with Archbishop Lefebvre) is much like the election of Vicky Gene Robinson in the Episcopal Church as Bishop of New Hampshire. It will take a while to play out, but in the end it represents a permanent break. Just as the Episcopal Church USA has decided, through their actions, to abandon the Anglican Communion, so too has the SSPX opted for a permanent break from Rome. The most logical position for them now is sedevacantism.

That being said, I am encouraged by Fr. Aulagnier's presence at the CIEL colloquium. Given the tension that existed in the past between CIEL's organizers and the SSPX (and in particular Fr. Aulagnier) after the 1988 episcopal consecrations, it shows that Fr. Aulagnier and the SSPX moderates are seriously looking to reconnect and re-establish communication with the Church and legitimate traditionalist organizations. My guess is that we will see another split within the SSPX in the next year, with the majority going deeper toward the sedevacantist position, but with a significant minority reconciling with Rome.

I also think you will see the SSPX increasingly become obsolete as legitimate traditionalists continue to rally around Bishop Rifan in view of building up a world-wide structure for traditional Catholicism rather than wait for the SSPX to work out their problems with Rome.

:: Pete Vere 7:05 AM [+] | ::

:: Friday, November 21, 2003 ::
Miscellaneous Mutterings:
(Response to Kevin Tierney on Many Subjects)

[Note: This post has been adjusted slightly in a few spots in addition to what was noted in the comments box. -ISM 11/24/03 11:40 am]

Shawn's Original comments will be SME1, my originals will be KT1, his response will be SME2, and my newest response to him will be KT2. Let's get started.

I will keep these indicators intact and simply alternate between black italics (my previous words) black (Kevin's words), and regular font (my current words) with sources in dark blue font.

SME1:"As the Church has struck out in another direction since Vatican II -a more traditional direction actually- to some extent certain elements of the period before Vatican II are not applicable anymore. But lest this be misunderstood, let me clarify what has not changed."

KT1:Well of course the entire debate was if it was actually a "Traditional" strike or not

SME2:Those who know their pre-"reformation" history are aware that it is.

KT2: This is one thing that just aggrivates me about my good friend Shawn. It is impossible to respond to such snide remarks. Yet as far as "Pre-Reformation" history, let me try and go with that.

The intention here is not to aggravate Kevin. On the one hand there is the complaint that I wrote too long a text.{1} Then when I try to economize, the summary statements required to do this get criticized as being "aggravating." Obviously people cannot have it both ways here.

KT2: It seems Shawn would just like to ignore the past developments of 500 years of history, civilization, etc when taking into account ecclesial matters.

It depends on what those "developments" are. In many cases they are not "developments" at all -or at least not organic ones from the whole of the Church's Tradition. The Counter-reformation model of the garrison church with its confessional scholarship,{2} its triumphalistic Latinizing,{3} and artificially enforced "uniformity" -coupled with the retreat from confronting the challenges of the world-{4} are a few such post-Trent novelties that I have no interest in seeing revived. They were artificial and deservingly got the axe.

KT2: Though I thought Vatican II needed to get in touch with modern times, yet in reality, modern times is "Pre-Reformation."

The approach of Vatican II was one of aggiornamento via ressourcement. I go over why this approach is eminently Traditional and Progressive at this link.

Well, the leaders of Vatican II say something refering to modernizing, Shawn interprets it for us to mean traditional. Does anyone think that's a little odd!

No one familiar with ressourcement methodology finds this odd Kevin. Indeed the fact that you appear to find the notion of authentic "Traditionalism" and authentic "Progressivism" being antonymous rather than synonymous is an example of you accepting uncritically the conventional wisdom viz the usage of these terms. By contrast, I do not do this. But the aforementioned link has details on this as well as some of what you will raise in this response. (Hence I may refer back to it as needed as I am not about to reinvent the wheel here.)

KT2: A Second notion I find problematic with Shawn is antiquarianism, just because something's old let's get excited about it.

I also deal with the antiquarian canard at the link above. Other links could be noted but for the sake of brevity I will point only to it at this time and note that Kevin does not appear to properly understand this concept. I never have endorsed something solely because it is ancient. Nor have I ever endorsed something solely because it has been done for quite some time.

KT2: He frequently does this when issues such as communion in the hand, and many things with the Novus Ordo Liturgy come up. Simple, if you can find an obscure reference in the Fathers, it's automatically traditional.

This is of course an oversimplification of these issues. For one thing, there is a lot more to communion in the hand than an obscure reference or two. Indeed for the first millennium, receiving by hand was arguably the most common way.{5} I went over this in my treatise and also in a separate essay on communion in the hand.{6}

Also, there is a lot more faithfulness to the Revised Missal being restored to "the pristine norm of the holy Fathers" (cf. Apostolic Constitution Missale Romanum) than there was with the Missal of Pius V. (St. Pius V's use of this phrase in his Apostolic Constitution Quo Primum notwithstanding.) I have pointed this out over the years as well in many ways. However, in a short response like this one it is not expedient to do so again.

KT2: There are two errors with this, what is "traditional" and how is that made. Just because something is old surely does not make it "Traditional."

No disagreement there.

KT2: The Ransom to Satan Theory of the Attonement is quite old, yet that doesn't make it right. Second it's not just one source that mentions it is which makes it traditional.

Again, no disagreement. However (i) communion in the hand has at least a half-dozen Patristic endorsements -including the authority of influential councils of the period. Also, (ii) the Pope cannot in his capacity as Doctor of the Faith (as Pope Paul VI was in promulgating Missale Romanum) either err or be separated from the consent of the Church because this consent cannot be lacking to him. That suffices to deal with the liturgical issue -the greater coherence with the Fathers of the newer liturgy notwithstanding.{7}

KT2: Something which is traditional is consistently advocated.

Centuries of practice is adequate to qualify for "consistency."

KT2: In other words, while communion in the hand did exist, as we grew to a more developed understanding of the Eucharist and what it entailed, the valid development in discpline of communion on the tounge developed, and in the context of the times, and I believe such still is around today,

We part company here in part because there was a general movement of centralizing the liturgy and reserving all liturgical practices to the celebrant in the late first millennium. (Including the modification of plural prayer forms to singular prayer forms -which facilitated the priest becoming the "one man show.") All of this preceded the move to communion on the tongue in the universal church.

As the former movements were indicative to some degree of an incomplete understanding of the liturgical mystery -and I would argue an understanding that became too one sided and thus on some fronts defective- the developments that preceded from its rationale are therefore of questionable import. And one of these was communion on the tongue under the auspices of only the priest or deacon being "fit" to touch the Blessed Sacrament. While rejecting the latter notion; I nonetheless have always received on the tongue from my first communion (pre-SSPX) through my SSPX years and since returning to the Church.

In summary, I defend communion in the hand as one viable way of receiving the Eucharist though I disagree with how this is often conducted. (A topic for another time perhaps.)

KT2: the majority of those who are out there consistently advocating (not just permitting) communion in the hand and other liturgical innovations do not have the Catholics best interest at heart.

This is more of a mixed bag than you seem to think it is; nonetheless that is neither here nor there.

KT2: Indeed, that's why Fr. Hardon said any attempts make to stop it would be rewarded by God!

I doubt Fr. Hardon would have countenanced playing fast and loose with the truth to achieve any end. (As he knew well the dictum that the end does not justify the means.)

KT2: Blessed Theresa even said nothing made her more sad than this.

Actually this is not true at all Kevin. However, it is a popular urban legend among the "traditionalists" that has been circulating for over twenty years. Due to striving for brevity, I will merely note that it is false and leave it at that.{8}

KT2: So I can readily argue the consensus of the Fathers in this particular area, is in line with me.

I do not agree -unless you extended the timeline past the Fathers and into the second millennium.

KT2: Now being it's discplinary it can of course be changed, don't get me wrong.


KT2: One does not committ a sacrelige automatically by communion in the hand, but I think some evidence for this practice being beneficial, and indeed superior to the old way (with evidence of course to prove this) should be presented before such a change is made.

This is a very balanced take on the subject and I commend you for it.

The Church does not change for change's sake. While it's open to change, it is not something that should be done easily.

A change should have the intention of somehow improving the manner whereby the faith is received or put into practice. Further still, it should be sanctioned by the proper authorities -a point that Pope Pius XII of venerable memory reiterated in Mediator Dei.{9}

KT2: That's one of the key divides since Vatican II, is how to change, when to change, what should be changed, and why should we change it.


KT2: We Traditionalists hold that there should be evidence before things are just castaway and new things are tried.

Of course there was ample evidences that liturgical reform was needed. Those who were not around at the time or who do not have a memory of those periods often do not realize this though. This is part and parcel to he failure to interact with what existed in reality versus what the pundits for the so-called "traditionalist" view like to assert. (Either through disingenuous revisionism or some form of misplaced nostalgia.)

KT2: Evidence what we had before wasn't working, and what is there now works better.

Well, there is one key variable to the equation that needs to be normalized or else there is no way to render an objective judgment on this matter. And that is the return of understanding obedience to ecclesiastical authority as was a given before Humanae Vitae was issued.{10}

KT2: Otherwise, we will continue to push for the former restored.

How about focusing on the Indult as a viable and valuable charism within the Mystical Body instead??? This is a big Church after all. This kind of single-minded determination to return everything to the days when people pretended that catholicity meant uniformity is not only not going to succeed but you will alienate yourselves from others whom you are expected to be in communion with.

KT1:Now in regards to your statements on what has and hasn't changed in the Syllabus issue, here's one serious criticism I have of Neo-Catholics.

SME2: Before moving onto this point, I remind you of the teaching of Benedict XV on such attempts to add qualifying terms to the profession of Catholicism.

KT2: I note in passing we only continued what was started by our good friend Shawn.

The very claim of "traditionalist Catholic" is precisely the kind of qualifiers that Pope Benedict XV was opposed to. In his day it was those who referred to themselves as Integral Catholics and the same presumptions abounded: "We are 'The True Believers'™ and you are not *fully* Catholic." And the term "traditional Catholic" predates by many years any and all counter monikers -whether they be derisive or otherwise- that have developed since that time. However, as not all people who do this are aware of the unCatholic approach, how it is addressed varies with the particular weltanschauung of the person or group in question.

KT2: "Rad-trads" have not committed open schism, at least not the majority of them, nor was a declaration of schism by proper authority given upon them in most cases.

But at the same time, most of those who refer to themselves as "traditionalists" do not conform to the Church's Law in several key areas. For example, Catholics are to preserve their communion at all times -even in their external actions (Can 209). Also, it is necessary to take account of the common good of the Church as well as the rights of others and their own duties to others (Can. 223 §1). Part of the common good involves at times sacrificing one's own preferences at the altar of the common good.

Furthermore, there is also the need to recognize that ecclesiastical authority has the right to regulate, in view of the common good, the exercise of rights which are proper to Christ's faithful (Can 223 §2) and that the teachings and directives of the Church's pastors require obedience (Can 212 §1).

It is not difficult to point to scores of so-called "traditionalists" who write articles or have recourse to the media to air views which give any reasonable person cause to doubt their adherence to the traditional principles enshrined in the canons of the law above. And of course in the event of an external violation, imputability of fault is to be presumed (Can. 1321 §3).

This is why We at Lidless Eye take the stances we take with those who show little if any regard for these precepts which are not only parts of the Church's Law but which are at the very heart of what the spiritual masters of the Catholic tradition teach -with the exception of the last one.

However, whatever leniency is granted to the last principle, it is sufficient to note that those who harp on abuses or encourage others to do so (to defend their agenda) those who show contempt or attempt to undermine in anyway the disciplines in force within the Church are not to be presumed innocent when these criticisms go from the private to the public forum.

I would not interpret the principle strictly in the case of people who have legitimate perplexities and who voice them in a respectful manner and in private. However, these are very much in the minority amongst the most strident of the so-called "traditionalists" - who too often cannot resist taking these things to the public forum. This is a violation of what Pope Benedict XV taught in Ad Beatissimi{11} and those who write or circulate such things have a responsibility to either clarify their intention or withdraw such works. Failing to do this is to attack the faith in the external forum and again: imputability of fault is presumed here a priori as is the manifested intention on the part of such writers to withdraw submission to the Roman Pontiff as well as obstinately oppose the teachings or directives of the Catholic Church. More could be said on these points but again the need for brevity intervenes.

KT2: Indeed, Restore the Church is not in "schism" yet his colleagues have hurled the epithet towards us before.

Restore the Church is a weblog and weblogs cannot be in schism. However, weblog writers can!!! As far as the persons involved in the weblog you note, I will at this time refrain from comment though if you want, I will be blunt about what I see as indicators that could give any reasonable person cause to question the fidelity of the weblog based on the positions of some of its contributors.{12}

KT2: Shawn also refers to us as "Self-styled Traditionalists" and a host of other names.

You call yourselves "traditionalists." I do not believe that you or the others are deserving of the moniker just because you guys say you are. But again, I am not going to at this time comment on the "status" of the weblog or certain apostolates which it either explicitly or tacitly affirms which give good cause for concern to faithful Catholics.

KT2: So Shawn, if it's ok for you to do so, surely it's ok for us to point this out as well!

Well my friend, again *you* call yourselves "traditionalists." I do not accept this as a valid moniker at all any more than I refer to the "reformation" without at least rendering the word in lowercase and putting it in quotation marks. (And usually prefaced with terms like "self-styled", "so-called", or "pseudo.") So alas there is not the similarity here that you presume there is.

I refer to myself as Christian first and Catholic second -to clarify the first. I see no need for other qualifiers; ergo those who apply other monikers to me are the ones who are misrepresenting me.

Now granted, if I referred to myself with other monikers contra the teaching of Pope Benedict XV then yes, I would be in the same boat as you fellas are -and the other monikers would be open for criticism or noting in a manner that is of questionable import. (As I do with the "traditionalist" moniker you supply to yourselves.) But as I do not do this so the similarity on the matter you believe you see there is in actually not present.

KT2: There have always been adjectives to describe people's persuasions, and those adjectives in themselves are not inherently evil, but how they are used can be.

Which is precisely why they should not be used. If someone is Catholic then they are Catholic. If they are not then they are not. The adjectives are "Catholic" and "non-Catholic." Someone either professes the faith or they do not.

KT2: If I were to state a Neo-Catholic, by being a Neo-Catholic was not really a Catholic, then I would suppose I violate this teaching. Yet i state everywhere, they are Catholics in good standing, they just have a thirst for novelty and something new, and to defend these things no matter what the results.

But you are contributing to the factionalizing here Kevin. Whether you realize it or not that is the result of what happens here.

KT2: Though if Shawn drops the whole "Rad-trad" or "self-styled traditionalist" mantra, I'll impose an order by fiat at Restore the Church for everyone to cease using Neo-Catholic.

Again Kevin, while I appreciate your fortitude here, at the same time these are not similar circumstances. One of the purposes of Lidless Eye is to separate the "traditionalists" into the simple classification of those who are faithful to the Church and those who are not.{13} There are a lot of appearances in this area which can be deceiving and thus this weblog serves a viable purpose. (And one which cannot be realized in doing what you suggest.)

KT2: Yet somehow I think I can acquire a bridge in Brookyln before he does this...

To cease to make a distinction between those who are faithful to the Church and those who either are not -or whose words and actions leave good reason for doubt- would of course mean treating all who claim to be "traditionalists" as faithful Catholics. And I know from experience that this is not only not practical but it is also not true.

Hence, this weblog serves the purpose of enlightening those who are legitimately perplexed by all these claims of "traditionalism" by parties -many of whom are not what they claim they are. Those of course whose opinions and conduct fall within the realm of acceptable diversity are left alone and even promoted.

For everyone on this weblog has a vested interest in seeing the tribe of Ecclesia Dei grow -whether they are formally involved in that apostolate or not.{14} Likewise, everyone on this list has a vested interest in seeing the legitimate manifestations of Tridentine devotions and worship be separated from those groups and individuals who are wolves in sheeps clothing.

SME2: I have over the years read no convincing arguments from those who oppose the magisterium of the Church Kevin.

KT2: Here we see Shawn's unfortunate arrogance and begging the question showing through.

The CDF was accused of this when it issued the Declaration Dominus Iesus back in August of 2000. Obviously there was no intention of sounding arrogant but when you enunciate truths or principles that are not readily accepted by others, the charge of arrogance is at times thrown around. In summary: sometimes the truth can sound arrogant despite all efforts not to come across that way.

KT2: He's yet to really show that we are "opposed to the magesterium of the Church."

I should have nuanced my statement better. What was intended was to note that I have read no convincing arguments from the "trads" many of which are not faithful to the magisterium of the Church. I was not intending to say that everyone at your weblog is opposed to the magisterium of the Church.{15} Yet again the brevity bug bites me, please accept my apologies for this.

KT2: Was Catholic World Report "opposed to the Magesterium of the Church" when it stated Guaidum Et Spes was far too optimistic, and that the last Pope that actually "Ruled" was Pius XII?

Depends on the context of the statements.

KT2: Was George Weigel being "opposed to the living Magesterium" when he cited several reasons the Anglican Dialogue was doomed, when in reality Traditionalists have been making these same arguments for years and being dismissed by Wiegel's ilk as "prophets of doom" and "Rad-trad schismatics"?

Of course not. However, you are treating this as a parity situation when it is not. George Weigel (i) from everything I have read of him takes into account the common good of the Church over his own opinions (ii) is obedient to the teachings and directives of the bishops of the Church (iii) has never manifested in his words or actions any reason to doubt his fidelity to the Church and (iv) as a result of these, he has the strong presumption of fidelity on his side a priori. By contrast, I could make a biblical scroll of candidates who do not fit this profile -indeed F. John Loughnan of Lidless Eye did this a few years ago.{16}

KT2: Of course that was what I meant, yet it seems Shawn has just ignored that, or glossed over, since it was a short response. I'm allowing the latter to be possible, since he himself stated it was a short response.

Thankyou. Again, I am criticized for writing summa form and also for writing tract form. With the latter there is bound to be stuff overlooked -that is the nature of the situation. Nonetheless, thankyou for the charitable interpretation.

KT2: As we're both busy men (And I'm still awaiting the negotiations on a future dialogue we are having) I'm hoping in the future if he does respond to this part, he will keep these things in mind.

Based on the way things are shaping up where I am at, the dialogue would have to take place in early 2004 at the earliest. However, that does not mean that the subjects need not be dealt with in some regard on this list.

For example, I know you and Greg have discussed these subjects. So if you do not mind dialoguing with Greg -who has posted some threads on this subject- that will provide for two advantages as I see it (i) it will enable the subject of the UN -its strengths/weaknesses/etc to be discussed as well as the Church's role in working to some extent with the UN and (ii) it will serve as an excellent way to fortify your thesis.

Greg and I approach this subject differently and dialoguing with Greg would enable a lot of stuff to be stripped away and a battle-worn thesis on your part to be formed. I wrote a lot of my web essays in this fashion -thrashing out in public forums over a span of time some of the more trenchant arguments on key subjects and it is an excellent way to refine one's arguments.{17}

With the UN subject, I already have a particular way I am going to approach this no matter what but I would like to see a discussion on the UN on these threads in the interim. That arrangement -if you are amenable to it- will also give me more time to read the relevant magisterial texts and work on a project I have wanted to do for some time viz Assisi and interfaith outreach. (And make the occasional brief comment or post a Q or two in the message box threads for both of you.)

SME2:This is the reason why radtrad arguments for the most part fail to persuade those who are of the proper Catholic mindset and are prone to the usual desires for corroborating support.

KT2: Does that "Proper Catholic mindset" include calling the Novus Ordo a "Fabricated Liturgy" or praising a book which called it the Roman Rite's "Destruction."

This depends again on the context of the statements. Remember Kevin, a text without a context is a pretext. Having noted that, it is also worth pointing out that there is no compelling by the Church for anyone to prefer one particular liturgy over another. And any liturgy has its merits and its demerits -which in and of themselves admit of discussion provided that it is done charitably and without appearing to have a malicious intention.

KT2: My preference? No joke. Get rid of the sign of peace altogether, or at least move it to a completely different part of the liturgy. It doesn't make any sense where it is. It is a shocking interruption in the middle of the most solemn part of the Holy Mass. The consecration has taken place, and Jesus is present in the Eucharistic Species on the altar, about to be received by those who are in a state of grace (hopefully only them), and we stop everything to shake hands with the people around us? For Christ's sake, ask yourself if this makes any sense.

This is something that I admit for a long time to not understanding. But in recent months I have come to see both a biblical and a practical reason for it when properly conducted and plan to muse on it at Rerum Novarum soon. (If time affords.)

All I will say at this time is that if there is one area of the revised liturgy that I could honestly not see a cogent reason for -except for the holding hands which I have not once done in my life and never will- it was the kiss of peace. But to whet the appetite a bit, that is all I will say presently.

KT2: And for His sake, for the sake of giving him the reverence he deserves, consider going to an indult Latin mass where such silliness does not occur.

See my previous comments.

KT2: The view that Vatican II might not have been prudent, but indeed her reforms have caused more harm than good is not an obscure argument,

One could say this about any council -provided of course that it is not a pretext for disobedience to or belittling of the teachings and directives involved. (The directives to the extent that they still apply of course and have not been modified by a subsequent pope.)

KT2: [The view that Vatican II might not have been prudent, but indeed her reforms have caused more harm than good is] an argument that has over 40 years gained acceptance, to where now even mainstream publications are willing to admit this.

Actually, it was a much more credible position to take in the 1970's and 1980's than it is now -at least by appearances. Since that time though the landscape has changed. The era of critical discernment has been taking place in recent years -arguably launched by Cardinal Ratzinger in his Ratzinger Report circa 1984 {18} and the aim here to balance the scales a bit.{19} There is still a lot to do but I am so much more optimistic than I was ten years ago about these matters -but in a realistic way bereft of excesses of either optimism or pessimism. Of course it helps to be able to see the whole picture but that is a subject for another time perhaps.



{1} This was the most trenchent (by far) criticism of my treatise and some of my earliest writings. (Even after I abridged the treatise by 40%, the same effect resulted from putting it on three urls instead of the original seven.) I got so tired of hearing these kinds of criticisms that I revised all of my writings onto shorter urls for easier reading.

This preserved the original text volume but put it into smaller bite size pieces. All my pieces over 35 pages long from 2000 received this treatment while my Christian Unity piece from January of 2001 was also put on multiple shorter urls. People who think my blog entries are long and cover a lot of subjects have no idea how much I have economized since 2001 in my writing.

{2} With confessional scholarship -as I have noted many times including HERE- truth is a casualty when it comes to defending "the agenda."

So much of Catholic scholarship in the post-Trent period was of this nature -defending every jot and tittle of approved practice whatever it was and pretending that later novelties were "apostolic" when they were not.

{3} Something which I might add was not actually given the axe functionally speaking until the Second Vatican Council. (Though the popes had often spoken out against this practice by imprudent Latin rite ecclesiastics.)

{4} Something which took place gradually after the Council of Trent and which seems by the time of Westphilia to have become the defacto approach to the world. (A stance which only hardened after the French Revolution.)

{5} Though not in the way commonly utilized today in the Latin rite.

{6} The latter was written in early 2001, the former in early 2000 and revised in late 2000.

{7} The same benchmark that guided the liturgical restoration under Pope Paul VI also guided the Tridentine approaches to the liturgy: the "pristine norm of the holy Fathers." Or to quote Pope St. Pius V in Quo Primum:

We decided to entrust this work to learned men of our selection. They very carefully collated all their work with the ancient codices in Our Vatican Library and with reliable, preserved or emended codices from elsewhere. Besides this, these men consulted the works of ancient and approved authors concerning the same sacred rites; and thus they have restored the Missal itself to the original form and rite of the holy Fathers. [Pope Pius V: Apostolic Constitution Quo Primum (c. 1570)]

No one of course familiar with the liturgical discoveries in the subsequent centuries would buy this assertion of Pius V for a moment. But of course he was limited by the knowledge of his time and it was believed that the Tridentine reforms were a restoration of the liturgy to the form the Fathers utilized. I do not mock them for saying this; however, those who promote this charade today are deserving of at least a mild rebuke.

For more on Quo Primum -including the binding nature of this document, see this link. If that is not convincing enough, there is always this one. But start with the former link first because it covers a lot of subjects including my general view of debates and discussion when these are not properly regulated. But I digress...

{8} The counter-myth of those crusading for communion in the hand was that this was "the only way communion was received for the first millennium." Like the Mother Bl. Theresa rumour, this is long on wishful thinking and short on fact.

{9} And as Vatican II noted in Sacrosanctum Concilium not to mention all editions of the GIRM which have been issued.

{10} Not that there was not an obedience problem prior to 1968 of course but it is a lot worse now than it was then.

{11} [W]henever legitimate authority has once given a clear command, let no one transgress that command, because it does not happen to commend itself to him; but let each one subject his own opinion to the authority of him who is his superior, and obey him as a matter of conscience. Again, let no private individual, whether in books or in the press, or in public speeches, take upon himself the position of an authoritative teacher in the Church. All know to whom the teaching authority of the Church has been given by God: he, then, possesses a perfect right to speak as he wishes and when he thinks it opportune. The duty of others is to hearken to him reverently when he speaks and to carry out what he says.

As regards matters in which without harm to faith or discipline-in the absence of any authoritative intervention of the Apostolic See- there is room for divergent opinions, it is clearly the right of everyone to express and defend his own opinion. But in such discussions no expressions should be used which might constitute serious breaches of charity; let each one freely defend his own opinion, but let it be done with due moderation, so that no one should consider himself entitled to affix on those who merely do not agree with his ideas the stigma of disloyalty to faith or to discipline. [Pope Benedict XV: Encyclical Letter Ad Beatissimi §23-24 (c. 1914)]

{12} This is where to some extent the subject of guilt by association comes into the picture.

{13} The criteria for judging this has already been covered.

{14} This falls under the "concern for the common good" principle noted earlier.

{15} As I noted already, I will not go over the subject of fidelity viz the various members of RTC at this time.

{16} And since that time has added and deleted people despite the "last updated" date being early 2002. (Some of whom were added or deleted at my request.)

{17} Though I approach it differently now, I still use my weblogs for the same purpose - only using message boxes and responding to emails from readers as the mode. (And rarely using message boards at all anymore.) The value of the two approaches is comperable and (in my view) indespensible for contributing to the discourse and finding out which arguments work and which do not.

{18} 1984 is a year I believe will be recognized by history as the Stalingrad for orthodoxy in the fight against the pseudo-"progressivist" elements in many areas. I have emphasized this many times as readerswho have read a cross section of my writings are aware.

{19} I refer here to the extremely centralized and artificial uniform policies prior to the Council -as well as the ridiculous legalism- which was countered after the Council by an excessive free-flow view that sought to celebrate diversity for its own sake. This was in part a reaction to erroneous ahistorical presumptions previously in vogue within the "garrison church" model. However, like any reaction which has some merit to it -including the reaction of Archbishop Lefebvre in the early days- one extreme so often begets the opposite extreme. I deal with this phenomenon to some extent in this post from early November at Rerum Novarum.

:: Shawn 2:22 PM [+] | ::


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