The Catholic Register reports: “The role of web sites in stirring controversy has become a challenge for bishops.” Weisgerber told the Register: “These bloggers who claim to be more Catholic than anyone — I think first of all they’re not part of the church, they’re not Catholic in the sense that they have no mandate, they have no authority, they have no accountability. And they speak very, very definitively about what it means to be Catholic, and they’re followed by so many people.”
It's almost like this Church organizes itself so that it's impossible to be orthodox.
A Catholic who is orthodox and sees wrongdoing and laxity around the church, and wants the clergy to conform to the Catechism as it is written, is blamed for standing up for the Truth.
The pictorial and documentary evidence against Development and Peace is fairly overwhelming. If bishops were politicians trying to investigate wrongdoing in their own departments, they would get laughed out of the House for defending their investigation method. Asking the organization if they're guilty? Not getting an outsider's look? Completely dismissing the evidence presented? Not refuting anything that Lifesite or John Pacheco has been saying?
And then dismissing allegations that were never made in the first place?
It's the Human Rights Commissions in reverse!
"Excuse me, defendant, are you guilty of anything?"
"And what of any evidence of wrongdoing?"
"How do we know that what you're saying is true?"
"Because we said so!"
"Well that's good enough for me. Not guilty!"
And we're all supposed to act like this is all settled?
My consolation is that Vatican has always backed Lifesite. Faithful Catholics back the Vatican, and the Vatican backs faithful Catholics.
I don't think this is the end. I think this is just the beginning of an entrenched battle.
Perhaps this is the start of a purgative process in the Church. It's about time all the laxity and the limp-wristedness is exposed and finally acknowledged, and that we stop telling each other that everything's fine and that we're all beautiful and orthodox, when we're not.
When you have a clergy that, in toto, who won't preach the entirety of the faith, that fears offending virginal secular ears with politically incorrect and "harsh" doctrines, that is not an orthodox clergy. When the clergy closes its eyes to widespread sin-- contraception, divorce, fornication, sodomy, adultery (not to mention heresy and various other sins against the faith), and allows it to pass uncommented, and leaves the people untaught, for fear that it might upset them and make the Church look bad (i.e. "fundamentalist") that's not an orthodox clergy.
The official Church reaction towards this Development and Peace controversy is simply an extension of this attitude. Don't look too hard, or we might find that the Emperor has no clothes. God forbid that people are shown to be modernist in their thinking because then they will have to become fundamentalist and there's no worse label in the world than fundamentalist: We won't be able to hang with the cool socialist kids who walk in anti-poverty marches, piss on George Bush and spout feminist critical theory. Horrors! We may even have to vote Christian Heritage. For God sake's spare us!!!!!!
The people involved with Development and Peace are not going to look too hard because they have a vested emotional and ideological interest in remaining oblivious to the situation. Their left-wing credibility may be on the line. They will have to submit to what they perceive as fundamentalist doctrine, and they would rather be branded sinners and heretics than fundamentalists. That's why they end up in the D & P branch of Church operations and not in the Culture of Life crowd. Nobody ever requires the social justice crowd to be orthodox, because, after all, they're just good-hearted people doing good-hearted things that make people feel all warm and fuzzy and they do a lot of good PR for the Church (meanwhile they're in the background trying to push for women's ordinations and acceptance of contraception.)
We all know that this goes on, so why does the official Catholic media act like this is all a shock. Oh my goodness! The websites have taken over! They've been the voice of faithful Catholics for the last fifteen years, and the Canadian bishops haven't noticed until now?
I think the only reason they noticed is because their authority was challenged over D & P-- their baby. I'm a mom. Nobody likes to be told that their kid is ugly. I know that. But if your kid has dirt smeared all over his face, a booger hanging out his nose and he's still wearing yesterday's bedhead, does the parent have the right to be offended?
When you tell a parent his baby is ugly, they're going to get defensive. Everybody's baby is cutest in their own eyes. But parents can be the blindest observers of their own children, especially when they refuse to see any blemish.
I am glad that we at least have recourse to a higher power in this Church. People may see the central authority of Catholicism as a weakness, as a domineering and tyrannical presence-- indeed, there are many dissenters who think so-- however, it is a great service of the Church to have a Supreme Court for these matters. These "website Catholics" as a general rule stand by the Pope, the Magisterium and Catholic Tradition-- the one that's 2000-years-old, not the latest theological fads since Vatican II.
When you learn to think with the Church, you learn to see what's coming.
I can see what's coming. It's as plain as day.