"Are we prepared to promote conditions in which the living contact with God can be reestablished? For our lives today have become godless to the point of complete vacuity. God is no longer with us in the conscious sense of the word. He is denied, ignored, excluded from every claim to have a part in our daily life." - Alfred Delp, S.J.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Pope Francis, Via Crucis ... what did he wear?

Did he genuflect?

I haven't watched anything with the Holy Father today - I painted instead.

Although I searched for a photo to see what he wore at the Via Crucis.  A commenter on another blog stated that if the Pope wore the mozetta tonight - or not - it would determine if the pope was traditional enough for him.

That's bullshit.  Fr. Z has a nice post on what the Pope is really saying, really doing.  He talks about liberals and conservatives - we all continue to insist upon dividing Catholics into separate factions.  That's bullshit too.

The Pope is Roman Catholic.  The Church is not a political entity, a worldly institution, or an earthly kingdom.  Being Catholic is neither liberal nor conservative, trad nor progressive. 

I get the feeling everyone is so busy pigeonholing the Pope, scrutinizing everything he does or says, measuring him according to their preconceived notions on what and how he is supposed to be doing things, that they are hardening their hearts and not listening to what the Holy Spirit is doing or saying.

Sorry the Pope wrecked your Easter. 

Perhaps it's better this way.


  1. I've been reading everything from him, so far -- all the homilies, addresses, angelus', etc. I think people are missing the forest for the trees.

  2. "A commenter on another blog stated that if the Pope wore the mozetta tonight - or not - it would determine if the pope was traditional enough for him."

    What the French, toast?

    Pardon me for finding myself bewildered by the utterly bizarre phenomenon of Catholics who are scandalized when the Pope wears white. Wasn't that basically normal up until Francis came along? Now all of a sudden it's appalling?

    Did Benedict XVI cause this much scandal when he wore the exact same outfit while presiding at the Way of the Cross in the Coliseum? Behold:



    Somehow I have no recollection of anyone having a stroke about the Pope wearing white back then.

  3. Remember stories of the "holy" Saduccees and Pharisees? when Jesus walked the earth these men were so "holy" they didn't recognize the Messiah right in front of their eyes.

    I believe we are experiencing something similar today. Will people recognize Jesus' love in the actions of this new Pontiff? Like the people of two thousand years ago, are we being taught that Love is a verb?

    While ceremony and ornate vestments are important symbols, They can't replace living in the real Love of Christ.

  4. Pope Paradox. Love it.

  5. Pope Francis Sinatra....I did it my way ;)
    I love our Holy Father.

  6. None of these comments address the real doctrinal concerns regarding the nature of the priesthood and the papacy, preferring subjective sentimentality to grappling with the issue of truth. Christ said "the truth will set you free," not your sentimentality nor your appealing to that of others.
    I happen to admire the Holy Father for all the reasons the world is presently praising him, but also recognize the grave error of a Pontiff trampling the liturgical books which are perhaps the central teaching instrument of the Papacy within the Catholic Tradition.
    Lex orandi, lex credendi. What you do with the liturgy expresses and affects what you think!
    If you do not genuflect to the Eucharist but do get on your knees to break Liturgical law you attack the very heart of the liturgical discipline, and if you happen to be Pope as you continue that abuse your abuse is amplified and the confusion manifoldly increases.
    As we saw in both Blessed John Paul II and in Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta, and in Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, complete obedience to and promotion of all of the Church's liturgical tradition is quite consistent with and actually conducive to authentic love of the poor. N.B. Deus Caritas Est!

  7. plinthos, you have touched on the real issue.

    Also, what Dr. Peters said - as posted by Fr. Z - rings true:

    "4. A pope’s ignoring of a law is not an abrogation of the law but, especially where his action reverberated around the world, it seems to render the law moot. [moot - "doubtful, theoretical, meaningless, debatable"]."

    As I said yesterday, what of those priests or bishops who have tried to uphold the law by abiding by the rubrics and who have been met with criticism, suspicion (don't they value women?), indifference, or other remarks that suggest it's all just no big deal, who cares?, etc.

    Many people seem to be taking the course that anyone who raises any questions about what the Pope did is a Pharisee, and that the Holy Father is simply doing what Jesus what would (WWJD) by calling out His critics for 'keeping the law' but neglecting charity.

    My question, if that is actually what is happening, is this: Why is that argument only valid now? Now, meaning after what the Pope decided to do? In other words, why do we have any laws or rubrics at all? Is it all "moot"? Can it all or should it all be disregarded as Phariseeism?

    Does "charity" really have no relation to the law, to rubrics, to liturgical discipline? Or at least to obedience to the current Church practice, unless that is formally changed, if we are of the mind that said current practice is misguided and/or should be changed?

    The knee-jerk emotional reactions that are painting Pope Francis as the Second Coming are, to me, just as unreasonable as the reactions from "trads" that are painting him as the devil incarnate.

    There is, or ought to be, a way to speak about these concerns which due them justice without being judged falsely as being a Pharisee, or being judged to have hardened one's heart by default because one has any concerns at all.

    And, it is interesting that calling out others for judging the Pope can lead to its own kind of judgmentalism in the process, of those who raise any questions or concerns.

  8. I read too a comment over at Fr. Z's from a "Jonathan Catholic" that I think is on the mark:

    "I think that there can be such a thing as too much loyalty to the Pope.

    When your loyalty is so strong that you will bend over backwards to justify anything that a Pope does solely out of completely blind love, you’ve got a wee bit too far.

    We have to walk a very fine line where we affirm dogmatic teachings, maintain obedience and respect, but still notice and still voice when a Pope, who can and does sin and can be in error privately, starts making wholesale changes to ecclesiastical tradition and violates canon law. It was so bad with many folks that it seemed almost as though the deference that was needed in this situation was a simple laughing-off of the notion that a Supreme Pontiff could be bound by canon law. While this is technically true, it’s a complete cop-out, since it’s being used as a shield to avoid the question of whether the Roman Pontiff is acting outside of propriety and encouraging Liturgical abuse and scandal by implicitly invoking his power as supreme interpreter of canon law and exploiting the fact that he has no authority over him except the Holy Trinity when it comes to matters of governance and law."

  9. I worry strongly there will be an even deeper schism, and it will emanate from the traditional side of the fence as it already has in past decades.

    I am a conservative Catholic. I am not a traditionalist because I definitely don't have all the answers. I will trust Jesus, as He asks us to do, and the leadership of the church; A human and divine church Jesus established over two thousand years ago, about which He said, "...Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it."

    If any Catholic is concerned for our church, prayer is the answer. Are there enough people praying a daily rosary (at the very least!) to spiritually support her?

    Jesus DID break the law to do things that generated abundant graces. He also asked us to imitate Him in all things. My attitude is to wait, pray, and see, and pray, and not criticize the person God is allowing to lead His church at this time in history.

  10. "If you do not genuflect to the Eucharist but do get on your knees to break Liturgical law you attack the very heart of the liturgical discipline, and if you happen to be Pope as you continue that abuse your abuse is amplified and the confusion manifoldly increases."

    The very heart of liturgical discipline?

    It amazes me what some Catholics regard as essentially Catholic, and how they will parrot as ineptly as possible agenda-oriented bloggers (as though reading blogs counted for the same thing as an education) in an effort to discredit a man (their Pope, no less), who offends their aesthetic sensibilities with regards to what they pretend to think they know about liturgy.

    Go deliver your complaint to the Greek Catholic Church, whose priests and worshipers never genuflect or kneel at all because the practice is unknown to them. See if you can, with that complaint, scandalize Armenian Catholics, whose priests kneel to distribute Holy Communion to the faithful, who stand to receive it (but whose liturgy is much, much "higher", in every way, than a Tridentine Mass).

    Some Catholics who know 20% of what "traditionalism" means behave as if they therefore know 100% of all the knowledge of the Church, the world, and the universe (not to mention of the mind of God) and accordingly set themselves up as judge and jury over a man whom they gloriously hail as the infallible Vicar of Christ.

    "When your loyalty is so strong that you will bend over backwards to justify anything that a Pope does solely out of completely blind love, you’ve got a wee bit too far."

    When your loyalty to your own incomplete understanding of certain man-made customs and rubrics is so strong that you will appoint yourself the judge and critic of a man who has given his whole life to Christ in the service of his followers, then do you not consider for even a moment that perhaps it is you who has gone too far? And for your license, you cite a poster in the combox at some blog?

    Lord have mercy.

  11. Does anyone ever consider for one minute what Christ Himself thinks of this annual hand-wringing and teeth-gnashing over whether or not females were included in Madatum? That perhaps He thinks nothing of it because so many of us are unwilling to do the kind of foot washing that He really had in mind when He put on an apron and washed the feet of the Apostles?

    Foot washing is optional. The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass on Holy Thursday is not. It saddens me to think of how grossly overlooked and neglected is the Institution of the Eucharist because the church's politicians insist on using one of the holiest nights of the year to go at one another.

    We have met the enemy, and it is ourselves.

  12. I meant MANdatum. I need a Catholic spell checker.


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