Skip to comments.I’m not leaving, I’m not going to be quiet
Posted on 04/23/2005 12:35:40 AM PDT by Aristotle721
We were at the zoo. Every few months our parish staff tries to do something just for fun. When you spend a good portion of your time together talking about whos dying and whos dead its important to go outside and play once in while. So, we were at the zoo. We had admired the tiger and the elephants, applauded the sea lions tricks, wondered at the wolves and were on our way through the reptile house talking about where we wanted to go for lunch when we got the call. Our secretarys son called to tell us the smoke was white.
Theres a new pope. We looked at each other nervously. Ratzinger he said.
Are you sure? his mother questioned.
Yes, Ratzinger is the new pope.
We just stood there in disbelief. I turned to the pastor and asked This is a drinking lunch right?
I think itll have to be. he told me.
Maybe hell surprise us. offered the music director. This is a new role suggested the Pastoral Associate, maybe the office will change his outlook. We should trust in the Holy Spirit mused another colleague.
We got to lunch. I ordered a beer and started drinking. My cell phone was ringing like nuts-my sister, a youth minister friend, my husband- that one I answered. Hes chosen the name Benedict. my husband said, The last Benedict stopped the anti-modernist witch-hunts and spoke out against World War I. I interrupted the ordering of appetizers to share this good news with my colleagues. The pastor shook his head, Wishful thinking. the gesture seemed to say.
It was the thing that all of us feared but were sure was outside the realm of possibility; the archconservative gets elected. (Hah! Anybody but Ratzinger, or that Opus Dei guy. I recall commenting.) The cardinals know better, we thought, they realize the need for a moderate. We of course would prefer a liberal pope, maybe the guy from Brazil, or Belgium to swing the pendulum back a bit, but a moderate would do fine for the time being. The church needs to heal and centrists bring unity.
A teenager asked me shortly before John Pauls death What difference does it make who the Pope is anyway? Excellent question. Catholics are still Catholics; the mass is still the mass, regardless of whos sitting in Peters Chair.
Her question reminded me though, of so many of the things I have to forget if Im going to continue working for the church. I cant think every time I go into a staff meeting, of the changes Ive seen since I began in ministry. I choose not to recall the vibrant diocese I was hired into in 1987, bursting with the excitement of lay ministry and lay leadership. My first boss, Fr. Bill Trott who was sure the priest shortage was the work of the Holy Spirit The leadership of the laity will only come to full fruit when the priests are the mystics of the community. he would tell me. I was new enough not to understand what it meant that as I was learning the ropes of youth ministry our local hero Fr. Charlie Curran, a professor at Catholic University of America in Washington, was being removed from his teaching position under pressure from the Vatican.
I remained hopeful as I served on our Diocesan Womens Commission and reviewed draft after draft of the ill-fated American Bishops Pastoral letter on Women in the Church and Society that made the not so radical statements that sexism is a sin. Too radical for this church we learned when our Bishop returned from Rome.
It would be impossible to stay if I thought of the way the Vatican clean-up crews made their way from diocese to diocese, how Id seen friends removed from their teaching positions at seminaries, course titles changed because they sounded too liberal, dynamic theologians suddenly unwilling to offer notes of their talks because theyd been reported to Rome one too many times for raising the wrong questions, and hopes of forward movement in the church dashed as more and more conservatives were elevated to Bishop. I cant stay and still think of how one of our most vibrant city parishes, on fire with the Gospel, was lost to the crack-down on liberal dioceses.
Should I stay or should I go is a question that has occured to me on a fairly regular basis, but there has always been the thought that with new leadership our hopes, my hopes, for a forward-moving church would be restored. I have been able to rationalize, in spite of my disgust with Catholic right-wing maligning of feminists, gays and lesbians, and immigrants, by hanging on to the idea that it cant last. Right?
I dont think Im the only one whose been biding her time. Ive been (fairly) quiet on the issues that Ratzinger called for silence on- the ordination of women to the priesthood, birth control to name a few- but I think that time has come to a close. Im tired of not talking about important things- sexuality, power, who is allowed to do what and who gets to say so. Im tired of working and worshipping in an environment of fear and mistrust. Im NOT leaving and Im NOT going to be quiet.
Weve got a new pope, hes the guy that brought us loyalty oaths and silenced countless theologians. Hes the man South African Anglican Archbishop Desmond Tutu called a "rigid conservative" out of step with the times, whose name has been synonymous will Roman power and authoritarian rule. Maybe he will surprise us. In the meantime, anybody need a drink?
Nora Bradbury-Haehl writes from Rochester, NY.
"Should I stay or should I go is a question that has occured to me on a fairly regular basis"
You should go. Find a religion that caters to the whims of public opinion and society, instead of banging your head against the wall of Catholicism's moral foundation.
I guess I knew they were out there but most of the ones I have met are more sly and clever I guess.
"It would be impossible to stay if I thought of the way the Vatican clean-up crews made their way from diocese to diocese, how Id seen friends removed from their teaching positions at seminaries, course titles changed because they sounded too liberal, dynamic theologians suddenly unwilling to offer notes of their talks because theyd been reported to Rome one too many times for raising the wrong questions, and hopes of forward movement in the church dashed as more and more conservatives were elevated to Bishop. I cant stay and still think of how one of our most vibrant city parishes, on fire with the Gospel, was lost to the crack-down on liberal dioceses."
When the heck did any of this stuff happen?
I myself would love for the new Pope to live up to such a description as this. Throw the liturgy changers out of the temple, re-instate that Latin Mass at every single church (as a choice, OK, just as a choice, not as an indult, which I assume means indulgence) and of course sweep the homosexual mafia out of power in the American church.
And if that makes the drunkard who wrote this piece unhappy, well, that would only add to my joy.
Don't be suprised. In this diocese there are priests that make this guy look orthodox.
Besides, "blatantly ignorant and stupid" is not the case at all. These folks know exactly what they are doing.
Out here in Arizona,believe it or not,the dissidents are really much more nuanced than this babe or bozo.
Yeah, this guy is really 100% out in the open. Sort of "out of the closet", I guess. Nasty.
I thought this was a joke at first. Sadly, I take it "Nora" is a real creature. Would that it were not so.
Yup, she's real.
I like your tagline a lot, btw.
I was visiting at a Catholic mass last night, and the priest said "Many are not happy with the new Pope. Should we have elected an Anglican?"
Attention all dissidents...now boarding Track 1 is the express to excommunication...
Shockingly ;-), the Paulist's, who run 'bustedhalo.com' are the very same Paulists who run the quasi-Catholic parish which John Kerry attends in Boston, Ma.
Too bad this disenchanted and non-dialogueing and intolerant woman obviously missed this weeks 'Life on the Rock' program where many young people 'on the street' were interviewed in Rome about the election of Benedict XVI - these kids are on fire for the Faith and their optimism and hope are inspirational. They are the future of the Church whereas these 'bustedhalo' people are the future 'Call to Action' folks.
This is exactly the kind of reaction shown by my parish's DRE.
I thought she was going to burst a vessel last week when PB XVI was announced. She was VERY upset and angry.
Have to admit...if it mader HER unhappy, it made ME very happy indeed.
Also, this lady is in for a rude awakening. The young people going to Church today are not that concerned with women priests or birth control. Maybe they think both should be allowed (thanks mostly to teachers like her), but they just don't get all fired up about it. And as many of them mature in their faith they realize that these things will never be allowed and they will eventually accept, if not embrace the concepts.
Also, I like the way this gal throws in immigrants with gays and lesbians. Yeah right, the Church has really come down hard on those immigrants. What sinful tendencies they have!
There's going to be the head of the Church who will rule with a rod of iron for a thousand years. Something to think about...
>>I turned to the pastor and asked This is a drinking lunch right?
I think itll have to be. he told me.<<
Turning to booze instead of turning to the Lord.
Blaming your woes on a man, rahter than laying your cares at the foot of the throne of Jesus.
Expecting mere mortals to comprise and validate your faith (or lack thereof).
Laying the foundation of your faith on human beings, rahter than on the precious blood of Christ.
This would be funny if it weren't so freakin' sad.
There are 4 divine establishments, volition, marriage, family, and government(nationality).
Those who rebel from God's plan for man, first step into sin and lose out on His blessings to live by the way He has created for them. That is grieving the Holy Spirit. Those who he loves he disciplines, but while respecting volition, should we continue to disobey, we fall into either moral or immoral degeneracy.
When the believer steps further than simply grieving the Holy Spirit, but begins to antagonistically attack God and His plan, he quenches the Holy Spirit.
There does exist a sin unto death, or face to face with death, where the believer no longer serves any useful purpose in the foreknown creation.
I always find it interesting to note how those who rebel from God, also happen to display arrogance in the form of rebellion to legitimate authority.
Likewise, if we find ourselves tempted to rebel from legitimate authority in volition, marriage, family or government, we also find some degree of arrogance in our thinking which has replaced God's policy of grace, with a counterfeit plan placing our selves and/or our thinking prior to Him.
Notice how in this situation, the author bodaciously brags about rebelling and remaining in the church. This open defiance of authority is only justifiable if the rebel is first remianing faithful in the spirit to God by respecting legitimate authority of the institutions God has created. The author has already expressed a rebellion to marriage, to family, and now to the government within the church.
The natural progression of reverting from God's plan allows for the rebellious author to further backslide, symptomatically manifest by imposing either totalitarian laws via legalism or by criminality in promoting lasciviousness. Those are simply consequences of living outside of God's plan.
I hadn;t noticed that immediately,...Interesting to note that her immediate response was to rebel from God's first divine establishment of volition......she wanted to get drunk so she wouldn't have to exercise volition..
My advice,...Nora has pulled the pin on the arrogance grenade and its simply a matter of time before she fragments her life and might harm innocent bystanders. Simply avoid her and separate her from others.
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