Monday, 16 January 2017

Thomas Peters Breaks His Silence

Well, this is a red letter day in the Catholic Blogosphere. American Papist, aka Thomas Peters, has blogged for the first time in 600 days  to beg the John Paul generation to protest Amoris Laetitia and its shocking implimention by the Maltese bishops.

It has been 600 days since I last composed a blog post, but this is so important I am breaking my hiatus.
Almost exactly 1600 years ago, in the midst of the Pelagian heresy which threatened to engulf the Church, St. Augustine wrote that when Rome has spoken, the case is closed (paraphrased: “Roma locuta est, causa finita est”).
Today, precisely because the pope has not spoken, the Church is facing a crisis, and the case remains open.
He's begging the priests, religious and theologians under 40 in particular to speak up. 
You were formed under the papacies of Saint John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI. You went to school for this. You serve as pastors, teachers and counselors. So, speak up!
My dear boy, the people who would speak up against this nonsense are precisely the sort of people who do not graduate or get ordained, except from solidly orthodox teaching institutions. Unless they are tough. I am admit that I am not that tough, and many orthodox students have been much much tougher and braver than I. Still, the glorious thing about having deep-sixed my "career" is that I cannot lose it again. What would I be feeling were I teaching systematic theology at Berkeley right now? Giving up Californian sunshine, and professorial privilege, and all that lovely money would have been a wrench.... 
Anyway, appealing to those who have positions to lose may not be the best course of action. It might make more sense to  appeal to teenagers--especially ones whose lives have been blighted by their parents' divorces. Nobody hates hypocrisy more than teenagers, and teenagers, in my experience, are the people most likely to throw themselves on the ramparts. When I was a teenager, I had friends who chained themselves to operating theatres in you-know-what clinics and were dragged down the stairs by the cops, bumpity, bumpity, bump.  (They were also tougher and braver than I.) 
Still, you never know. If enough of us freelance professional Catholics start yelling our lungs out, people with a little more worldly stuff to lose will take courage, and if enough of them start yelling, those a little higher up will take courage, too. Although I have to admit that the 13 Cardinals, Archbishop Gądecki, the 45 Theologians and the 4 Cardinals have led the way, the silence or hostility of the rest of bishops plus the other theologians does suggest that this is going to be a down-up movement. 
We all know that Cardinals wear red to show their willingness to be martyred. But guess how many Cardinals were martyred during the English Reformation. Guess! Guess! One.  He was also the only bishop.  (In Scotland, Cardinal Beaton was assassinated, but errr....)
Lots of abbots and priors were killed, dozens of priests, hundreds of lay-folk, but all the other bishops got with the tyrannical program so that Henry VIII could have sex and babies with |Anne Bolyn and feel good about it. 

So far I have offered up the pain in my sinuses for the doctrinal integrity of the Church, prayed, cried and written an article about the Maltese bishops that I hope is coherent. I'm still sick in bed, after all. Oh, and I have linked to Catholic Papist, so toddle over and think about how you can do your bit. 

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