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More on The FFI and Me

After my plea for help for the FFI yesterday at the Register, many people emailed me or commented that I should read the Catholic World Report article and it would alleviate all my fears.

Most of those who did so I believe to be well-meaning as they thought I did not understand what is truly happening. However, I had read the CWR article before I posted my plea. You see, I have read just everything there is to read about this matter including the very same source documents that the CWR report used. However, I have come to very different conclusions than that author did.

I appreciate that people do not want to believe that such a thing could happen in the Church without sufficient reason. So when they read the CWR report, unfamiliar with the detail, were inclined to believe it to be an accurate representation of the situation.

Unfortunately, I do not. I do not wish to imply any malice on the part of the author, but it contained half-facts and misleading quotes that give the impression, as the commissioner wishes, that there is something clearly nefarious at foot within the order. As of yet, there is absolutely no evidence of that. None. Just innuendo. The only clear accusation is traditionalism.

All that is not to say that there was not strife within the order and that some of that strife was caused by how some aspects of traditionalism manifested themselves through the leadership of Fr. Manelli. But even that being the case, the sanctions imposed upon the order and most severe and disproportionate to the problem.

Again, I appreciate that many people don't want to believe the Church could act so unjustly, so being unfamiliar with the case, accepted the CWR report at face value and assumed I (and other) are over-reacting. I hope that is true, but alas I do not believe that to be the case.

For anyone that is interested in understanding more about this, please take a look at a rebuttal to the CWR report at Rorate Caeli. It is written by an insider and as such presupposes fair bit of knowledge about what is happening. Further, it doesn't even go into some of my concerns with the CWR report, but it is not my intention to critique that publication or the author, I just disagree with him.

Lastly, I have also received some complaints, some not so friendly, that people would prefer that I just went back to blogging about the culture wars and joking around rather than deal with all this internal strife. Trust me, nobody wants that more than I do and I will try to keep it light when I can. But these are important issues and they are important to me personally. If I will not stand up and be heard on something so important, than why am I doing this?

I will try not to become a one trick pony, but I will from time to time post on these issues. Thanks for listening.

*subhead*More.*subhead*

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14 comments:

St. Benedict's Thistle said...

Thank you for your kindly, but firm stand. It can be difficult to do so when being attacked by one's own brethren. I can't imagine what the FFI are going through as their order is being destroyed by those who should aid and support them.

Katalina said...

If the CWR item is not correct and Gloria TV is not correct for the posting of their clarification than why would not well respected Catholics like Cardinal De Hoyos and Michael Voris and even Father Z report on this than. They don't seem overly concerned. Why would Francis put on an act about Trent and UNA VOCE and the Ordinariates if he really was against their Liturgical Views? He has not completely overturn the MP of Benedict or put Archbishop Marini in charge of the CDW as well rumored by Rotate several months ago.

Salvelinus fontinalis said...

A most excellent post, yet again. I am personally tired of people standing behind the CWR article stating "See - Everything is totally kosher in the Church" - Playingh the blinded Catholic Ansers apologist, head in the sand, while putting their hand out for cash... Bravo Pat!

Badger Catholic said...

I dont think blogging necessarily involves sticking ones head in the sand....

Magdalene said...

Read the Rorate article. The calumny against Fr. Manelli is huge and accepted even by some in the Order. There is still no heresy and no charges to excuse what has happened to an Order faithful to the Pope!!!!!!! Irony is that a Franciscan Pope suppressed faithful Jesuits in the 18th century. It took decades for them to resurrect. Now a Jesuit is suppressing a faithful Franciscan Order. Hopefully it too will resurrect but it will not be the true charism under a modern Capuchin...

I do not think anyone could have foreseen this virulent response to a few friars, not even them. But the right ears were found and so this suffering ensued. It is a great suffering but then that is exactly what the FI should be prepared to offer as it follows the admonitions of St. Maximilian. The suffering must be embraced even by novices, seminarians, and laity....all who have done nothing wrong! Hopefully the Holy Father will have mercy...

Harry Seldon said...

It's tricky, slippery slope.

Once one enters into the world of traditional groups, one is faced with the constant sorting process of the faithful from the crazies, just to find a place to go to Mass. If someone has never belonged to an FSSP or FFI parish, you should before weighing in on this situation. The Vatican could crack down today on the FSSP and crypto-Lefebvrism within its ranks, and the bloggers would go apeshit, but many who live within it would sit back and nod and say "Thanks for recognizing the problem."

In a similar way, when the SOLT was suppressed in several ways in the wake of the Corapi scandal, some people went nuts about an order being blamed for the actions of one priest, but those of us who had lived under SOLT pastors sat back, nodded, and said "Thank you for recognizing the extent of the problem."

It's very easy to say "Those youngsters are ruining our order with their crazy Traditionalism!" and "Those old liberals are just holdovers from the 60's and are ruining this order!". Neither of those sentiments hit at what the Vatican means when it cites Lefebvrism.

My experiences in a decade around Traditionalism tell me that rejection of the validity of both the Missal of Paul VI and VII is much more widespread than most people think. Traditional priests who do listen to Rome on these matters are subject to significant discrimination even within orders supposedly founded on these points.

Go ask the local FSSP priest if he even attends the Bishop's Chrism Mass. Or if he has ever used consecrated hosts from the tabernacle if the building is shared with a Novus Ordo parish. Or if he lets the assigned chaplain take communion to his parishoners in the hospital. Only a few will answer in the affirmative. The rest, either they have problems, of their congregation does, or their brother priests do.

I remember the old Indult Mass in my old diocese, where a NO priest was assigned to learn and say the TLM because the Bishop wanted to obey Rome. It all failed because the people didn't trust him, because he was ordained in the New Rite (considered dubious) and he didn't promise not to use hosts consecrated at the NO. And this was at an indult Mass in the diocese!

So, bloggers who think it's their duty to shoot first, consider how that egg all over your face is going to taste when (not if) some of the wackiness that no doubt exists within the FFI comes to light.

Katalina said...

Just out of curiosity I went back to CWN site and they have a rebuttal to the nameless source at Rotate. Mr. Miller states more facts again about the questionnaire sent out in August and as you see a majority wanted outside intervention. Also Mr. Miller says he is standing by his reports. Be cautious.

utubeo said...

@Harry,

Even if all your claims are true, and that some of the FFI have gone off the rails, the measures put in place are entirely unprecedented in modern times and utterly out of proportion to how outright heretical orders have been handled. Even the Legionnaires weren't treated that way and they were founded on fraud and deceit. Why, one of their former prominent priests just married into Vatican high society.

As for the mistrust of the laity, Rome and its appointed bishops have worked day and night to create it. Yes, you could rightly argue that the laity must obey, even trust, in spite of all misdeeds, but then "who are [you] to judge?"

TTC said...

You rock.

David L Alexander said...

"Harry Seldon said...

"It's tricky, slippery slope.

"Once one enters into the world of traditional groups, one is faced with the constant sorting process of the faithful from the crazies ..."


True. Very, VERY true. This is probably the wisest analysis of the situation I have read since the whole thing started.

(It is also why I have said nothing about it at my own venue.)

Unless you're actually within the community itself, you only have part of the story, no matter how many details are at your disposal. And those who blame Pope Francis should remember that an investigation of this order would have had to have begun under his predecessor, and have a good head of steam before Pope Benedict resigned.

Patrick Archbold said...

You will note that my complaint was not that the commissioner was appointed, i took a wait and see approach. My concerns surround the recently announced measures.

Wine in the Water said...

Unfortunately, the Rorate Caeli article seems to mostly boil down to: "trust our interpretation of the situation because we have a super-informed, unnamed inside source." But the problem with this argument is that the problem is fundamentally *on the inside*.

I don't blame people for being concerned. Problems on the "traditional" kind always seem to get a harder crack down than problem on the "liberal" kind. But cries of "persecution!" and "grave injustice!" and "this is just the first volley in the Pope's war, the next is embracing homosexuality!" (actually heard that one) are utterly imprudent.

Harry Seldon said...

utubeo wrote:

""Even if all your claims are true, and that some of the FFI have gone off the rails, the measures put in place are entirely unprecedented in modern times and utterly out of proportion to how outright heretical orders have been handled. Even the Legionnaires weren't treated that way and they were founded on fraud and deceit. Why, one of their former prominent priests just married into Vatican high society.""

You are almost completely correct. You might look into the measures taken on the SOLT (Society of Our Lady of the most Holy Trinity), Fr. Corapi's former order.

Now, as to the justice of the measures taken in the case of the FFI...I'd say that in the case of the Legion, or even the Jesuits, there is no current talk of formal schism. In the case of Abp. Lefbvre, there were manifestly schismatic actions (the ordinations and consecrations) and this papacy sees that historical breach as the far more serious one. That is, and I think this is obvious, within the Pope's purview, and no one can judge it.

So, this Pope is going to crack down on Lefebvrism for the sake of institutional unity. Lefebvrism is attached to Traditionalism. Therefore, those are the rocks they are going to overturn.

My opinion is that we, the Traditionalist faithful, should have done our part to root Lefebvrism out a long time ago. We didn't. Now the Vatican gets to do it...perhaps too enthusiastically.

Now...if the Vatican figures out how blurred the line is between radical Lefebvrism and Sedevacantism, they might go nuclear.

Long-Skirts said...

Wine in the Water said:

"But the problem with this argument is that the problem is fundamentally *on the inside*. "

NONE of this is on the "inside", it's all right before our eyes.


DO
A
LITTLE
DANCE

Do a little dance
Make a little mess
Put down that rite
Put down that rite!

Do a Bishop prance
Feign a humble stance
It's out a sight
It's out a sight!

Franciscan babes
Pull it together
You didn't do
What you should do

The Latin rite
Is used to tether
St. Pius the Tenth's
Point of view

(Chorus)

The other guys
Say Latin Mass
Same way
Same kind

But always near
Society's brass
To come to them
If change of mind

(Chorus)

A rival good
To God's own good
By every Chapel
Of St. Pius

Where we plan
As well we should
To lure away
And then they'll try us

(Chorus)

So Franciscan babes
You'll have to go
You don't obey
Our church of people

Our plans entice
Shrink men to mice
Then shut you down
Obeying sheeple...


Do a little dance
Make a little mess
Put down that rite
Put down that rite!

Do a Bishop prance
Feign a humble stance
It's out a sight
It's out a sight!

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