May 05, 2008

What If There Was Nothing Left for You to Blame?

There are people who are incapable of joy. There are people who are incapable of healing. There are people who make a living trying to see that you neither heal nor have joy. They want you to be as miserable as they are.

I'm reading how in the wake of the Holy Father's recent visit to the states the various organizations that claim to advocate for those who were sexually abused by clergy are scrambling to minimize the damage the Holy Father did to their organizations by surprising them when he met with 6 of the abused. They are probably irked that the Holy Father did not clear it with them first. Furthermore, they are probably upset that they've been screaming for years about how the hierarchy needs to apologize and here's the Hierarch of the Hierarchy doing just that. Now what? He just took the wind out of their sails. Now what else can they do but claim it wasn't enough and, thereby, expose their true motivation all along. It was never about the apology. Now, they've just confirmed what many of us have suspected.

How much is enough?

Frankly, for some it's never enough. No amount of money or apology is ever going to satisfy them. No amount of prayer or therapy is going to mitigate the nameless rage they feel. Sometimes I'm not even sure they know who or what they are really angry with anymore.

If the Holy Father's visit with the abused did anything it illuminated yet again how some of these outfits long ago quit advocating for the abuse victims. I was involved early on with one of these organizations and their claims to be for the abused were tenous even then. You could tell what they were really after-power.

Now they are exposing their true motivation-overturning the Church. They continue to, lamely, deny that but you've have to be under a rock not to see their protestations as weak. The abuse scandal just gave them a new weapon to use in a fight they were already in. Some of these folks were upset at Holy Church WELL before the abuse scandal hit. I'm convinced that some of these people don't give a ---- about the sexually abused. For them, it's about the same money and power that they claim the big, bad, Church has which is what they really want.

None of it has anything to do with Christ or His Church. It's all about who gets to set rules. Right now, these organizations believe they don't have it and they want it. Is replacing one authority with one of your own a solution for all of us or just for yourself? I've got news for you, ultimately, none of us has any authority.

Humans are flawed. We have capacity for evil and violence. The Church has the potential to be perfect, unfortunately, we humans frequently lack the ability to execute the model to make it so. This does not mean it should not be attempted. Our failings are not Christ's.

There are trads, and you probably know some, who are so enraged that all these "dopes" from the Novus Ordo in English are invading THEIR TLM they hardly know what to do with themselves. They won't go so far as into schism-thank God-but they spend a lot of time ranting on trad forums about the new folks who have dared to enter what used to be THEIR Mass, and they don't wear veils, and they don't understand it's not a dialogue Mass, they stick their hands out at Communion, blah, blah, blah. Rather than reaching out to their brothers and sisters and try to help them understand this treasure of Holy Church they spend all their time mumbling under their breath and glaring at everyone who's not one of "them" in the pews. Now that the historic battle of us vs. them that they lived by for decades is enjoying a truce they don't know how to react. Get over yourselves. You have something in common with the progs you despise. Progs think the Mass is theirs and so do you. You are both wrong.

There are people who just cannot let go. They must have something external to hate or be mad about. If it doesn't exist, they create it. I think because they are afraid to spend time in self-evaluation or looking at themself. It's easier to blame something else or someone else's actions, or lack therof, rather than your own. If you look within, you may see something that's really horrifying. If you examine yourself, you will see that what you have fooled yourself into believing are someone or something else's failings, are really yours.


Blogger Unknown said...

Oooooh! I wish I'd said that! [Do your fingers hurt after pounding that out?]

I know of one attorney who has become rich from Church lawsuits whose idea of appropriate compensation would begin with the Pieta being moved to the lobby of his office building.

And I know of one trad who obsesses over the fact that the currently unused high altar of a beautiful old church in town only has two steps leading to it. [Somewhere it is written that there must be three steps.] He's afraid the new archbishop will shut the parish down.

May 05, 2008 7:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Amen, Amen.

It is interesting how much the far out progressives and the far out traddies start sounding alike. In the last few years I moved from being a average pew sitter to becoming more traditional, or rather, a full blown Catholic.

One of the things I am doing is starting a Schola in my parish in the Rochester Diocese. So I run across both types. In the Liturgical Committee I was greeted by the rad progs who thought for sure I was trying to turn back the clock to 1950, wanted womyn veiled and everyone on their knees receiving communion (Like that would be so bad?). Then when I went to Gregorian chant conferences I'd get verbally assaulted by rad trads, who were bitching and moaning about how "their" mass was being over-run and that I was a sell out because I was going to go with a gradual introduction of chant and traditional music, instead of fighting on for a TLM with all the fixings. Its enough to make your eyes cross!

Okay people, lets just concentrate on being Catholic and following what the Holy Father says, okay? He's pretty darn smart, and he's the heir to Peter, Not you!

Yours in Christ


May 05, 2008 7:21 AM  
Blogger Adoro said...

Great post Cathy!

And Tom...that was my experience on our Liturgy Commission as well. And as such, NOTHING got done because everyone was fighting for THEIR Mass, and the only agenda advanced was the Music Directors as she's managed to make nearly every Mass a LifeTeen event from Hell.

(Our Priest is laying the smackdown on that, though, I think...God bless hm!)

May 05, 2008 8:13 AM  
Blogger Tom in Vegas said...

One of your best posts!

Abbey Roads2 covered a book called The Faithful Departed, which deals with Boston's defunct Catholic culture.

I think you sum it up quite nicely: "For them, it's about the same money and power that they claim the big, bad, Church has which is what they really want."

They sue the Church for millions and millions of dollars, bankrupt their diocese, and STILL remain Catholic. If you still cherish your Catholic tradition, why would you sue - or in this case - bite the hand the feeds you? And if you sue and collect your millions, it would be more consistent to leave after collecting your check. You DON'T got back to the same parish, and take communion from a priest that’s from the same diocese you just helped bankrupt. Instead, you leave and say NO MORE Catholic Church, thank you very much.

And, please, spare me the “It’s not about the money” rebuttal

To anyone reading my comments who might be a victim of a pedophile priest, I'm not trying to belittle the damage and suffering that was caused to you. I am, however, saying that your motives are a inconsistent, if not down right suspicious.

May 05, 2008 6:58 PM  
Blogger Adoro said...

I believe there are victims who are not looking for money...just healing. And they likely hate SNAP and VOTF and others as much as anyone.

Because no amount of money can ever change what occurred, and punishing the rest of the faithful, to include bishops and priests, doesn't make things better, either. What it does is cause distrust and stigmatize the abuse...and cheapen it.

These groups may have a hot place in Hell waiting for them for the damage they've caused. We should pray for them, although to be quite honest, I don't want to.

But God's grace is powerful so it's worth a try...after all, when He conceived of humanity, He saw the Cross, He saw the abuse, and He saw VOTF and all the others...and He chose to suffer that death for all, anyway.

May 05, 2008 7:48 PM  
Blogger Cathy_of_Alex said...

I want to state that I know there are folks who were abused by clergy. It's horrible.

However, I think these same folks are often victimized, yet again, by some of these organizations that claim to want to help them.

May 05, 2008 9:08 PM  
Blogger Larry Denninger said...

Excellent post. So often I run into Catholics who want to define "faithful" by their own terms instead of by the Church's. You almost get the sense that when they say the part of the creed "I believe in one, holy, apostolic, Catholic Church," some include the qualifier "my" before the word "one", forgetting that it is Christ's, and Christ's alone.

May 05, 2008 10:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yup, Cathy, exactly. It both saddens me and ticks me off.

May 06, 2008 7:28 AM  
Blogger Christine said...

He did take the "wind out of the sails" of those who would use the tragedy of the abuse as a means to attack the Church

May 06, 2008 11:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Thank you so much for your wonderful post, this is exactly how I feel as well. The Church was established by Christ, and it is His Church, not ours. It's the oracle of truth, not a corporation, but the vast majority of the population just doesn't get it.
Judging by the look of things in the world, I'll have a lot of work to do if God continues to lead me down the path to the priesthood and religious life. I'm in college now (I'm 21 years old), and I'm trying to learn as much as I can to prepare myself for this vocation, and I know it'll be tough, as there are a lot of wolves that are luring the flock of Our Lord away from Him.


May 06, 2008 2:18 PM  
Blogger Larry Denninger said...

My prayers are with you, landolakes

May 06, 2008 8:04 PM  
Blogger Cathy_of_Alex said...

LOL Jesuit: When I saw your handle my heart sank becuase I thought "Oh no, a fan of the '67 Land-O-Lakes Education Conference!"

Maybe you should be Kemps Jesuit or Old Home Jesuit or L'Etoile du Nord Jesuit? :-)

Welcome. Whether it leads you the priesthood or not, I will pray for your formation.

May 07, 2008 6:13 AM  
Blogger Allison said...

I would love to see some new faces at our weekly TLM! Thanks for the reminder at how important it would be to welcome them with open arms. :)

May 10, 2008 10:01 PM  

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