The Church in America: Low Grade Civil War
Dale Price over at Dyspeptic Mutterings is being brilliant again:
Fr. Thomas Massaro would like you all to calm down.
I’m not going to fisk this, because it’s an admirable sentiment, as far as it goes. Which means it stagged a step or two before dropping in a messy heap.
Yes, it would be nice if things in the world were more civil and respectful. That’s fine.
But the problem with his call for civility is that he sees the white-hot anger as the problem rather than the symptom. It’s not–the real problem goes far, far deeper than that, and has been savaging the Body of Christ for decades now.
The HHS mandate is just the catalyst causing it to explode to the surface.
The real problem is that the Church in America has fractured into at least two churches. If it hadn’t been this issue, it would have been a dispute over the language of the liturgy, or the latest pronouncement from the Vatican, some university conferring honors on someone who is an open enemy of Catholic teaching or even the renovation of the local cathedral church. The struggle–more bluntly, low-grade civil war–between the churches has been going on since the last bit of incense dispersed at Vatican II. We don’t agree on how to worship, what our schools should teach, what laws should be enacted/opposed, what canons apply and when or even what our parish church should look like. In fact, we can’t even agree on whether or not Jesus actually rose from the dead.
And for forty five years, our shepherds have been trying to keep it together by careful tacking, including soothing rhetoric, trying to give everyone half a loaf or so (depending on the year, bishop and constituency) and generally trying not to see the coal pile in the ballroom.
Go here to read the brilliant rest. This would be the same Father Massaro who signed a petition supporting Sebelius, the political ally and protector of the late Tiller the Killer, foremost practitioner of that barely disguised infanticide known as partial birth abortion, for secretary of HHS.
I do not believe for a second that Father Massaro cares a fig for civility. He is simply on the side of the Obama administration and all this fuss is hurting his team.
As I have noted here, this is an Elijah on Mount Carmel Year for American Catholics. This is a time of choosing for all American Catholics, and, to quote Lincoln, the dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present. Storms ahead indeed.