March 21, 2007

Why is Everybody Always Picking on Us?

Gentle Reader: Have you ever noticed that when it's a slow Catholic blog newsday there is a decided tendency to come on over to the Archdiocese of St. Paul/Minneapolis and pick up some story/event/dissenter that those of who already live here have known was trouble for YEARS and present it like it's some big new scandal? Or, present it as an opportunity to once again present to the Catholic world further evidence of what a disgrace this Archdiocese is and how almost everyone who lives here and claims to be Catholic really isn't?-unless you are a member of St. Agnes in St.Paul.

St. Agnes is a great parish. However, it's not the only orthodox parish in this Archdiocese. Which, by the way, consists of over 200 parishes in 12 counties. There are hundreds of parishes that soldier on, doing everything according to the prescribed rubrics, but you never hear about them because they aren't causing a public scandal. There are only about a dozen or so parishes that could be described as seriously dissenting. Those are the ones that make the national blog news.

Yes, there are clergy and religious and educational institutions that are not strong in Catholic Truth around here. There are also many who are. However, I'm sure that I could browse around and find Archdiocese around the world with similar groups of people.

I have blogged about some of the dissenters around here myself. I apologize, if by doing so, I have contributed to the stereotype of this Archdiocese being all bad. By the way, by reading this blog you are entering the life of a former, really, hardcore Catholic dissenter who turned her life around.

I was reached because merciful Catholics reasonably persuaded me with the Truth. What good does it do if all we are doing is reporting but not actually acting? Sure, it can be fun to read the National Catholic Enquirer (Hey, how do you like that title?!) but so what? If you don't like it, if you want change, DO SOMETHING about it.

It's one thing to report it, blog it, complain, murmer about it, whatever. It's another thing entirely to put your Faith where your mouth is and actually try and educate and correct your brothers and sisters who have IT all wrong.

Friends, no one is going to be persuaded by the vitriol aimed at dissenters that I see in some blog comboxes.

As a Catholic activist or apologist I could do a lot better. Sometimes, when presented with an opportunity to evangelize for the Lord, I run away or I am silent.

I get really angry (I was furious yesterday) when I see bloggers and their commenters, who don't even live here, judge us from a distance.

I can see a day coming when this Archdiocese, as a whole, is very orthodox. Call me overly optimistic if you want to. Things have happened here in the last 5-10 years that I thought I would never see. Our seminaries (both minor and major) are full. I have great hope and confidence in the priests that have been ordained here in the last several years.

For the record, much of this change has occurred under the leadership of our present Shepherd, Archbishop Harry Flynn. The Archbishop takes a lot of heat for not "doing enough" because he's not cutting dissenters off at the knees at every opportunity. And, sometimes, I have to admit, I forget myself and get mad at him too. I don't think the Archbishop is a stupid man. He saw, rightly so, that the seminaries in this town needed serious reformation. How can we return to Truth if our priests don't preach it?

Furthermore, he has been a ardent proponent of Eucharistic Adoration. We have more Eucharistic Adoration in this, supposedly horrible, Archdiocese then any other in the world. How can grace fail to flow from that? I can find an open Adoration Chapel, within a few miles of my house, 7 days/week.

Sure, there is room for improvement, but no one, no Diocese is perfect. Not mine, not yours. The Diocese is more then one person or one parish. It's all of us. We all stand or fall together.


Blogger Adoro said...


I've commented on this before in different com boxes, but you have said it so eloquently!

Well done!

You deserve a raise.

March 21, 2007 10:00 PM  
Blogger Cathy_of_Alex said...

Do you think if I approach the boss and show him this post it will work? No, I don't either. I like your thought though!

March 22, 2007 8:39 AM  
Blogger Kasia said...

Well, I will here and now apologize for any times I may have succumbed to temptation and expressed my shock at some of the craziness in your archdiocese.

For the record, I am usually able to keep my thoughts to myself on that, as my archdiocese is the lifelong home of one Most Rev. Thomas Gumbleton... ;-) houses and all that...

March 22, 2007 10:31 AM  
Blogger Sanctus Belle said...

Here Here Cathy! I grew up in a suburb of Minneapolis. The vast majority are good parishes. St Paul/MPLS does have its fair share of abuses, but not more than any other I suspect. I just wish there was a huge neon sign outside with the code words for dissent "We are an inclusive, eco-spiritual, social justice..blah, blah" to warn those of use looking for a decent mass.

I reitirate - the devil will step up attacks in the areas where souls are being saved by so much adoration. his only goal is to populate hell with our souls.

March 22, 2007 12:28 PM  
Blogger Cathy_of_Alex said...

kasia: Yes, you know where I'm coming from.

March 22, 2007 1:26 PM  
Blogger Kasia said...

Cathy: I certainly do, and probably even more than you realize.

March 22, 2007 1:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cathy - Congratulations, you are now a "Stepford Roman Catholic" of the Archdiocese of StP/Mpls!

I'm so kidding. This is an excellent post and reminder to us all.

I think the Archbishop, by really focusing upon the reform of the seminary was dead on, we need good solid priests to lead and to renew the liturgy. He started the reform in the right place. we always have to remember that the bad things we live with here, took years to progress and evelop - without a miracle, Flynn couldn't reform everything in thee relatively short time he has been here.

Thanks for this post - Adoro is right, you do deserve a raise.

March 22, 2007 3:12 PM  
Blogger Cathy_of_Alex said...

Terry: Alas, I don't look like Katherine Ross and the last time I looked in the mirror I did have eyes.


March 22, 2007 6:24 PM  

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