Saturday, 21 May 2016

Nitpicking...


The Papal communion is fundamentally ridiculous. If it was standing at railway stations asking for money nobody would give any. And you may say that this series of posts on the latest "apostolic" exhortation has nothing to do with me but it seems a little bit sad for anybody, and not just anybody but a respectable, intelligent priest, to sift through magisterial documents with a view to choosing what to believe and uphold, and what to discard like an old newspaper. It's ludicrous! Nobody with even half a wit can be taken in by what Rome says, and the people who genuinely believe it are without exception unbelievably shallow. What holds the Papal communion together? Stupidity and tribalism seem to me to be the only two things for most Roman Catholics. Converts? Well, you just have to wonder why they would reject some fatuous document with the word "apostolic" tagged onto it if they don't actually believe everything from start to finish, top to bottom, and everything in between. What do they believe? What do they really want? Because it seems to me that such people have chased a fool's fire to the ends of the earth only to find that the sea has no shore, the grass is not greener, that their imagined utopia, the perfect society on earth, is just as spurious as the Church of England. They don't like it, in fact they hate it, but they're desperate to justify its existence by salami slicing off bits that they don't like and vainly imagining that the old temporal power will return, that some future pope will don a triple crown and celebrate a 1962 mass, and that some goddess' "immaculate heart" will prevail. It won't happen. The barque of Peter is a sinking ship. Get out while you can!

Of course you know that people despise your opinions when they don't even acknowledge or review what you say.

7 comments:

  1. Some people think Father Hunwicke's blog is a work of the greatest genius. I find many of his postings tiresome and a little boorish. He gets into minutiae that I have no interest in.
    ,
    It is clear he doesn't really like Francis, but he will never clearly state that. He tries to be coy and writes in code his dissatisfaction of the current state of the RCC.

    Anthony

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  2. No. The only Anthony Munday I know of is the playwright.

    Anthony

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  3. Patrick, you gave a very fair-minded assessment of the Church of England in a comment a few posts back:

    "It was never the "true" Church, or even a branch thereof, but it maintained dignified worship down to my grandparents' time, and was a force for good in terms of education through liturgy with the Prayer Book and the King James Bible. Not to mention the towering figures, true men of Christ, in the history of Anglicanism; Hooker, Andrewes, Baxter, Ussher, Swift, and closer to our own time Hope Patten, Frank Weston, Dom Gregory and countless others who shaped Anglican eucharistic and liturgical thought. One cannot forget the historical and liturgical undertakings of the Henry Bradshaw Society, Dr John Wickham Legg, William Stubbs, Dr Pusey, even Newman before he poped. The Church of England has made an enormous contribution to the broader Christian Church that cannot be forgotten or underestimated."

    This seems very fair. Is the Roman communion so destitute of virtues and laurels that it does not deserve a comparably measured and charitable assessment? Are its liturgical errors so grave that it has been no better than a circus for the last six centuries? Are its doctrines so thoroughly corrupt that it did no good for that duration of Western Christendom in which the Pope was a figure of power? Are its errors so noxious that none of its saints, thinkers, and teachers count for anything? The Roman heritage is complex and variable, and though we can all agree that the overwhelming taste of its modern residue is as bitter as the muddied dregs of an bad wine, we must also recognise that not everything in the history of Roman church had this same evil flavour. I think that in abominating Rome outright you are falling prey to the same absolutism of attitude that leads the traddies you despise to accept its claims outright. I think your approach to the established church would serve as a better model of the right understanding of Rome than your current attitude of vehement hostility.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, hisperic, for your thoughts. I'm very busy at the moment and your comment deserves a more thorough response than this (to which I shall devote a post), but is it not enough that I left the Roman church in disgust?

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    2. hisperic, thank you for this very well-reasoned question for Patrick. And I wait for his reply, which are always quite good.

      On my own part, I agree with your assessment. There is much good and holy in the Roman tradition, as there is in all apostolic traditions, but in some sense, its best years are now long in the past. The course that has been adopted since the 1850's is actually one of self-destruction. This present Pope seems to be the pinnacle of such a principal of self-loathing that has infected the Roman tradition. Of course, I say that whilst also thinking the situation is going to get much worse.

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  4. Forgive the solecisms, typos and incorrect terminology in the post above. It was written in haste.

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