000000000000... I've been waiting some time to post the following analysis. It's been on the backburner for over a year now, prompted by an representative article issued at the Catholic Register in January 2010. Its importance appears to have been overlooked by commentators. The delay occurred because I wanted to see how the whole Development and Peace scandal played out relative to the CCCB Plenary Session circa October 2010. It also required some further monitoring of developments on related issues, like the recent emergence of the term "Catholic Taliban" and other linguistic phenomena. Admittedly, my laziness can be factored into the mix as well. It seems this blogger has wallowed time by becoming a bit of a smarmy, occasionally abrasive chatterbox since acquiring a Twitter account.
Today's target for analysis is a generalized one: the Canadian Catholic careerist class. That is, the CCCB, chancery office bureaucrats, the Catholic MSM, "social justice" grant mongers, parish busybodies and the allied remainder constituting that gallery of "professional Catholics".
It is hoped that, with this post, three things become manifest to my Canadian Catholic readers: (1) the clear and present danger that the blogosphere poses to these careerists, (2) how these careerists, in reaction to this approaching storm, attempt to curtail the mainly orthodox Catholic blogosphere, be it through vilification, disqualification, and/or charges of uncharity, and (3) that internet discourse on matters pertaining to the Catholic Church in Canada could eventually be overlorded by these careerists unless the effort is kept up to counteract the Ancien Régime du Nord. Otherwise, the situation in Canada could end up looking something like this...
The master of the servant, is the master also of all he hath: and may exact the use thereof.
- Thomas Hobbes, Leviathan, pt. II, ch. 20
Perhaps a grandiose symbolical example to illustrate a point? Granted. But it did grab your attention... Yes? And there's nothing like good old fashioned, cold-blooded Hobbesian imagery to prep oneself for the matter under review.
Thus we proceed...
I. As many of you are probably aware, the Canadian Catholic blogosphere as been aflame since April 1st when Ottawa Archbishop Terence Prendergast cancelled the talks of the suit and tie priest Fr. Luis Arriaga, a representative of the Miguel Pro Juarez Center for Human Rights (PRODH), based out of Mexico. An abstraction from the diocesan office release reads:
Since the Centre's support of groups in favour of abortion rights in Mexico is incompatible with the Church's defence of the right to life from conception to natural death and the mission of Development and Peace, and in order to remove any doubt about this commitment, the speaking engagements of Fr. Arriaga have been cancelled.So indeed it looks like Fr. Arriaga is going to have to peddle his un-Catholic utopianism elsewhere. Good luck, muchacho. Now, of course, "the mission" of Development and Peace has never in the past been affected by any group supporting abortion rights. It always has lent support thereto. LifeSite News and the lads at SoCon have been demonstrating this actuality for over two years now. Canadians owe them a huge debt. And let us not forget the labours of Fr. Alphonse de Valk at Catholic Insight, an unsung hero who has for years gone up against the malevolent forces involved in this matter, including aligned fiends. It is only the fact that D+P was publicly called out on this particular group that "the mission" phrase was evoked (it would seem) so as to maintain whatever modicum of credibility it has left with the mostly oblivious Catholic populace in our fair land.
II. Note well the bolded text in the above quotation because there was a modification in phraseology. People who contacted the Ottawa archdiocese office with concern over Fr. Arriaga's presentations were afforded a slightly varied, though still significantly different, e-mailed response. Contrast the below-mentioned quotation with that above:
Because the Centre's support of abortion rights in Mexico is incompatible with the Church's defence of the right to life from conception to natural death and in order to eliminate any doubt about this, Father Arriaga's speaking engagements have been cancelled.Do you see it? Look closely at the bolded texts and intercompare. Four words are missing: "of groups in favour". Canonist word welders at work so as to disguise D+P's knowingness of PRODH as a direct supporter of abortion, not just a supporter of other pro-abortion agencies? Also omitted is the "mission of Development and Peace" phrase. Or is all this the result of a normal revision process prior to public release? Whatever the case, the incongruities engender suspicion because the wording in the public statement, as opposed to the e-mailed response, makes Development and Peace appear less accountable.
III. Nonetheless, Canadian Catholics should be grateful for Abp. Prendergast's decision as it is important for three interrelated reasons. Firstly, recall that PRODH was one of the first D+P sponsored groups identified by LifeSite News as supporting abortion rights way back in March 2009. Prendergast's cancellation, as a bishop in and with authority, therefore formally vindicates the investigations of LSN and SoCon or Bust. What, then, does this say for the other 50 or so D+P supported groups identified as Moloch worshippers yet to be formally acknowledged as such by the officialdom? What, then, is to be done? Secondly, the D+P/PRODH partnership ties in directly to activity (or lack thereof) within the CCCB, which has pretended and promised to resolve the situation for 2+ years. Prendergast's decision is the first publicly implemented action taken to actually arrest at least one of the myriad, malfeasant, decadal-long operations of the D+P hippycrats. Heretofore the CCCB negated and stalled anything associated to the scandal with "sessions", "committees" and other inutile, paper shuffling avoidance tactics. An April 4th statement released at the CCCB website tells only of "allegations" (i.e. still in denial) and that "recent questions and concerns... underscore the need for the CCCB Standing Committee". Bureaucrat sprechen yet again. Translation: despite our statement for further investigation, nothing is going to happen, so get lost. Just read what D+P board member Bishop Richard Grecco recently spoke: "we're all in agreement that we should support D&P". It goes without saying that the cancellation provoked disdain into quite a number of boys in The Star Chamber. The third reason interconnects all of the abovementioned: the cancellation for the first time signals, in a real and objective way, that the Catholic internet/blogosphere in Canada has at last emerged as a significant player in the war to recover and/or allay the damage wrought by the apostate/heretical careerists since Vatican II.
IV. One can only imagine how that meeting went between Prendergast, Arriaga and D+P Executive Director Michael Casey. The stuff of Malachi Martin narratives. Had Fr. Martin been alive today, I would have suggested this title for his next book: "Building a World of Justice". Probably after the shock of realizing it not being an April Fool's joke, on April 1st Casey also issued a letter wherein we read of his "great disappointment" at the cancellation. Predictably defiant, he wrote of PRODH's "outstanding work" and steered clear of mentioning its pro-abortion facilitation. No surprise here. Get the violins out and pour me a shot. What did come as a surprise was an editorial at the Catholic Register. When last year it headlined LSN's investigation of PRODH as "nasty" (Fr. Arriaga's word), it did a 180 after Prendergast's issuance: "Someone is guilty of either appallingly poor judgment or blatant incompetence... Either way, it begs the question: how many questionable agencies are still endorsed by D&P?" A change of heart? Influence from an outside party? Feigned concern? Just going with the flow? Whatever it was, something's going on, and I sure as heck hope that Cardinal Ouellet is listening in. Also noteworthy was the column in the Register by one of Canada's more prominent clerics, the prolific Fr. Raymond de Souza. The title is self-explanatory: "Does D&P not get it?". Fr. de Souza has been quiet in his writings on the scandal up until now. My guess is that he knows more than most on the shenanigans blocked from public view. Nonetheless, it would not be unreasonable to state that his article, albeit indirectly, is another stamp of approval for Canadian Catholic websites/blogs.
V. Note well that Canadian is emphasized. Even with this symbolic victory over Development and Peace (and The Star Chamber by association), it is only a victory in a battle. The war still rages on. This, I believe, must be underscored as there are no guarantees of continued success at this early stage. The CCCB and its piggybacking compatriots still have the dice loaded in their favour. They sit in the cockpit and yet, despite the pilot's incoherence, he's still unwilling to give up controls to the co-pilot even as Air Catholicus has it course plotted straight for the rabbit hole. Keep in mind here that we are far behind the Americans. They have very influential Catholic news and analysis sites, with none of the Fabianist drivel that you find, say, at the Prairie Messenger, nor the secular brown nosing viewed on Salt+Light TV. The US Catholic blogosphere is a well-oiled machine, with many posters, lay and religious. They are just hammering the USCCB Conciliarists. They play with the scribblers at the National Catholic Reporter like an orca tossing around a dead seal. Just for the fun of it. Similarly, if we cross the North Atlantic, the Brits have some superb Catholic bloggers. Young Damian, at The Telegraph no less, has become a scourge to The Magic Circle and is driving the Tabletistas bonkers. All of it quite enjoyable to watch.
VI. Now it has been in the last two years or so that grumblings started to issue throughout the unhallowed hallways of hippydom. Soonafter the grumblings turned into complaints. Today it is a cacophony of condemnation. Something called a "Catholic blawg" has stepped onto the stage, stridently orthodox, and the tie-dye dissidents, extremely nervous with the mounting trend, have had to stock up extra underwear due to an increasing frequency of continence-related eventualities. To get the "official" reaction on the blogospheric uprising, look no further than to CNS, a news service that all Catholics can trust (wink). In July 2010 the USCCB and CPA hosted a seminar, Faithful Catholic Media: Continuing the Conversation. Commenting on the "webinar", the controversial Los Angeles Auxiliary Bishop Gabino Zavala evidently forgot to bring his extra pair of Depends that day:
We are particularly concerned about blogs that engage in attacks and hurtful judgmental language. We are very troubled by blogs and other elements of media that assume the role of magisterium and judge others in the church.That's the "non-judgemental" retort. Now you would think that a high ranking cleric wouldn't be so sensitive, immune to intense debate associated with emerging issues since, for example, he once said that the "skill, talent, giftedness, insight, and grace of homosexual and lesbian members of the faith community is to be called forth, welcomed, and allowed expression". If they're permitted expression, then why not Catholic bloggers? But, then again, we're talking about someone from a diocese formerly under the leadership of Roger "the dodger" Mahoney. Then there is the "oh, shoo and go away you little peasant" response from the enlightened, effete intellectual. For this we go to Fr. James Martin, SJ, the velvet smooth culture editor at America, that ultramontanist magazine we all know and love. There is, he wrote, a "web-based McCarthyism on the rise in the Catholic blogosphere... devoid of any sense of Christian charity" and so forth. So why would the good Father be aghast at the situation? Was he, instead, subconsciously self-projecting his frustration at the CDF for being on America's case these last few years? Or perhaps he's still upset that Fr. Drinan isn't around anymore, to hear his reminisces about the good old days of that meeting in Maine with the Kennedy's? Or maybe his latest off-Broadway script was recently rejected? Interesting speculations on my part. In reality, however, his commentary was a rejoinder to a now popularized label cognized by a weasely commentator at the National Catholic Reporter. That expression would be this: "Taliban Catholic". And it so happens that John Allen, Jr. is a good friend of The President of the Internet. Relishing the fact that he now has the perfect zinger to vilify and thus disqualify, The President of the Internet has lovingly adopted Junior's expression:
There's a certain form of Taliban Catholicism out there right now that would like to dictate everything and, really, it doesn't speak to the future... There are many people who claim to be Catholic and faithful to Christ and the Church. They know little of Christian behaviour.But I am running too far ahead of myself...
VII. By way of formal introduction, then, let us first, ladies and gentlemen, familiarize ourselves with El Presidente: Fr. Thomas Rosica, CSB, Founder and CEO of Salt + Light Television, Canada's "Channel of Hope". Junior is full of hope too: "Canada's Salt and Light network... has carved out a profile as a genuinely Catholic media operation without an ideological edge". So what does that imply about EWTN? Read all about the quid pro quo between Allen and Rosica here. But back on topic... You Canucks might be surprised to learn that Fr. Rosica is an American by birth. He obtained his undergrad degree in Italian/French Languages and Literature from St. John Fisher College (1980), ordained a priest in the Congregation of St. Basil (1986) in Rochester, NY. It was in the mid-1980s that he arrived hereabouts. He has advanced degrees in Theology and Sacred Scripture from the Toronto School of Theology at Regis College (1986) and, abroad, from the Pontifical Biblical Institute in Rome (1991) and the École Biblique et Archéologique Française de Jérusalem (1994). He served as Executive Director and Pastor of the Newman Centre at the University of Toronto from 1994 to 2000, and was National Director of the World Youth Day when JP2 visited Canada in 2002. Salt + Light TV went on air in July 2003. For the next few years he was Master of Scholastics of the Basilian Fathers in Toronto. In August 2006, he was elected to the General Council of the Congregation of Priests of St. Basil. Incidentally, I always have loved the Basilian Fathers. They have a long history here, doing much good work, notably in education. Fr. Rosica was also the Vatican's English-language press attaché for the 2008 world Synod of Bishops. Since around 1990 he has lectured at various Canadian universities, also writing for numerous publications in several languages (a polyglot), even having a three year stint as a columnist at the Toronto Sun. There is also Father's weekly scriptural reflection at the ZENIT news agency. Quite an impressive curriculum vitae. Seriously. The exception is that he acts as consultant on Catholic affairs for the CBC. So I have a hunch you won't see him on the Sun News Network anytime soon.
VIII. Today we know The President of the Internet as a firebrand at odds with the nonconformist citizenry that populate the bowls of the Catholic blogosphere. For the purposes of context, I have collected and collated a suite of accusations levelled by El Presidente, commencing (note well) immediately after LSN scored major hits during the controversy swirling around the funeral of abortion-enabler Ted Kennedy (ethereal whereabouts unknown). Enjoy:
September 3, 2009: Through vicious attacks launched on blogs, a new form of self-righteousness, condemnation and gnosticism reveals authors who behave as little children bullying one another around in schoolyards casting stones, calling names, and wreaking havoc in the Church today!Now you'd think that the aforementioned indictments originate from some sort of reactionist, fuddy duddy mindset incapable of attuning itself to the rapid advancements in modern communication technologies. This is not the case. It is not the "new media" per se to which there is an enmity. Go to the Salt + Light home page and you will discover a well designed, fully functional website with all the bells and whistles. So what's the problem, then? How are we to explain the explosive expostulations extolled ex Rosica?
October 30, 2009: ...radicalization of rhetoric... On the Internet there is no accountability, no code of ethics and no responsibility for one's words and actions.
February 10, 2011: ...misinformation finds a healthy home in the blogosphere where anyone with a keyboard and Internet can shout out information without accountability, corroboration or verification of facts. When such actions are done in the name of 'defense of the faith', 'protection of the Church', upholding Christianity or Catholicism, it is erroneous and a gross distortion of serving the truth in charity.
March 5, 2011: At best, the activity of Lifesite is a form of unthinking activism akin to a shooting gallery... they leave a vast trail of collateral damage, character assassination and destruction of reputations of good people, including Cardinals, Bishops, priests, religious and community leaders.
April 5, 2011: Websites and blogs, especially Catholic ones, tend to concentrate on negative messages... filth, hate, conjecture, and innuendo... vitriolic, vindictive messages... The LifeSite blog is not a Catholic blog. It is not an authoritative blog. It has caused huge problems in the North American church, not just in Canada. Some blogs have coarsened Catholic dialogue in the past years: the anti-Obama Catholic blogs; the so-called pro-life blogs, that may be advocating pro-life, but they are decimating persons and reputations.
April 7, 2011: Today's weapon of mass destruction is the computer and keyboard, and the 'reply all' button is the most deadly thing. Suddenly 75 people are aware of something that would not have been said in any other way... Technology enhances or multiplies frailty or stupidity... We need an intellectual GPS to point us to the way that is authentic.
IX. There are two reasons. First: although El Presidente has got his fingers in nearly every Catholic pie in Canada, he has not control of the sphere of blogs. He can call up any newspaper in the country and get an interview on the spot, he can throw parties and schmooze with the glitterati, he can lecture at this institution, he can write an article for that periodical and, as he stated, "I work closely with the bishops of both countries" (Canada, US)... he does all of these and more. Yet that dastardly internet upsets everything. This, however, does not mean something is not being done to rectify the situation. That is, to tame the wild beasts roaming throughout Catholic cyberspace. More on this later. Second: What do we see today in the personality, tonality and modus operandi of The President of the Internet? He's tenacious, a fighter, a man of action, a doer. Admirable traits in themselves. Although they are not overnight manifestations, suddenly popping up so as to engage what he thinks are adversaries to Catholicism. Thanks to The Vox, we can do some time travelling. T-minus 25 years and counting... Here's the lead-in to a newspaper article in 1986:
The word Thomas Rosica repeats over and over again is "scandalous". He's referring to the way in which churches tend to remain segregated, isolated, interested in their own. If you spend any time talking to Rosica, he will tell you just how frustrated he gets when he hears how Roman Catholic priests speak in chauvinistic ways about salvation in the "Catholic Church". He doesn't even like when they constantly refer to themselves as Catholics, when the word "Christian" not only would have been good enough, but preferable.Sound familiar? Oh, there are more goodies:
In some ways, he regards the Roman Catholic Church's reluctance to permit Catholics and Protestants to take communion in their churches as an embarrassment... "shared communion" with Protestant denominations at times of mixed marriages and funerals should be encouraged... "We have a right and a duty... to take objection with these young people (including young professors), who, through their theology courses and rigid beliefs, wish to move the Ecumenical movement back to a time it knew no possibilities for growth"... The next step is to work on "twinning" churches, where churches begin to do some real sharing and experimenting with liturgies.Now after reading the article one could assume we are seeing the idealism of a younger, less-experienced man enchanted by a radical ecumenism whilst enraged by a "rigid" traditionalism and so-called legalism in the Church. Remember, this was way back in the 80s when Kumbaya was king and big hair all the rage. So it would seem fair to let it pass. Heck, I'll even admit to watching The Facts of Life at the time. There was something bizarrely fascinating about Mrs. Garrett's hairdo. However, a brilliant fisk by The Vox on a recent address makes it clear that Fr. Rosica's views, although more refined, remain relatively unchanged. Indeed, the latter is aggravated with the trending return to authentic liturgy and of a more traditional-mindedness in younger priests. Nonetheless, the rambunctiousness, the "oh my goodness, this is an outrage" attitude, this desire to take control of a perceived unjust situation, is evidenced to be occurrent in the earliest days. And there is one other thing...
X. The article indicates that, at the time, the up-and-comer was involved in a survey of churches in the Montreal area for the Canada Centre of Ecumenism. "His findings... are being examined and considered by the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops". So there begins his connections with the CCCB. Very importantly, note that today Fr. Rosica is a member of the Episcopal Commission for Communications at the CCCB. So as CEO of the Salt and Light Media Foundation (our largest Catholic media outlet), as controller of all that is disseminated therefrom, and also as someone intimately connected with the Canadian bishops, he is effectively the mouthpiece for the CCCB. Thus, when The President of the Internet speaks, the CCCB speaks. When El Presidente castigates Catholic bloggers, The Star Chamber castigates Catholic bloggers. Now as such, as the all-too-eager "stand-in" so to say, he is going to get most of the blowback from Catholic bloggers angered at the terrible state of the Catholic Church in Canada. Of course, what he receives back is due to his own, shall we say, unfriendly and uncompromising comments about Catholics on the internet. There is a article by Kathy Shaidle on Fr. Rosica recently published online by Catholic World Report. A perusal of the com boxes will show that many are still incensed with his past remarks about bloggers and the pro-life movement. Likely, he's been under pressure since the nuclear detonation that was the discovery of pro-abort group support by Development and Peace, the "social justice" arm of the CCCB. Probably, his acerbic comments against bloggers are due to a combination of factors: partly obedience to his bishop buddies, partly drive and ambition, partly the desire for a miter, partly the fiery Italian in him and, yes, even his devotion to the Church. This is not to say that they are always ill-intentioned, just wrong and misguided. However, his comments about the "headquarters" for a certain site as being in "somebody's basement in the Ottawa Valley" was vicious, betraying a clericalist haughtiness reminiscent of the Borgia's. Alas, the plebeians don't have free access to the Gagliano family fortune, they don't get to cuddle up to a pro-abortion, anti-family "Catholic" Premier of Ontario in a television interview, they don't get invited to celebrity dinners. They don't have this power and influence. They do, however, have an internet connection.
XI. Nevertheless, know that El Presidente's evident disdain for bloggers is just the symptom of a disease, of something noisome, of corruption within. Accordingly, the principal target here is not El Presidente, but The Star Chamber, namely the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops. Interesting it is that, back in 1995, the CCCB issued its "Statement on the Information Highway", wherein we read that the "Catholic Church, including the Catholic Church in Canada, welcomes the advent of the information highway as another important technological innovation that will enhance every aspect of communication among people and societies". Now compare that with an even more interesting statement in 2009 by former CCCB President Abp. James Weisgerber: "These bloggers who claim to be more Catholic than anyone - I think first of all they're not part of the church, they're not Catholic in the sense that they have no mandate". Quite a contrast. Not very welcoming, methinks. So why the change over in such a short period of time? In a recent commentary, Steve Kellmeyer tells us why the CCCB is freaking out: "Technology is going to shine a light on the reptiles in a way never before possible. The heretics will not last much longer". Because of the laggardly, inefficient aspect implicit to any bureaucracy, it is only within the last couple of years, after Development and Peace was exposed by LSN, that The Star Chamber is coming to realize this harsh reality. The party is over.
XII. It has many times been observed that, since Vatican II, the Bishop's Conference as a body is the main obstacle preventing a return to authenticity in Catholic faith, morals and liturgy. This isn't just the case with the CCCB. It's happening at conferences throughout the Western world. Basically, what's in play here is an old heresy known as Conciliarism. You can read my summary of its origins here (see its note 19). In a nutshell, it was effort to democratize the Church, shifting authority from the pope to the bishops and then to "the people". Is this not a trend which we see today? Unfortunately, there currently exists an incorrect assumption that The Star Chamber speaks ex cathedra like the Pope whenever it issues a "Pastoral Letter" or "Statement". This is not the case at all. Why? Canon Law say so:
...the bishops who are in communion with the head and members of the college, whether individually or joined together in conferences of bishops or in particular councils, do not possess infallibility in teaching.There's more. Here I have to thank Steve G at Socon for pointing out comments by a certain Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger from an interview in the mid-1980s:
The decisive new emphasis on the role of the bishops is in reality restrained or actually risks being smothered by the insertion of bishops into episcopal conferences that are ever more organized, often with burdensome bureaucratic structures. We must not forget that the episcopal conferences have no theological basis, they do not belong to the structure of the Church, as willed by Christ, that cannot be eliminated."Eliminated"... hmmmm. So, for example, when the CCCB issues a pastoral letter on the "Christian Ecological Imperative", wherein you find references to publications by Elizabeth Johnson and the United Nations, and wherein you read verbosity like "a new asceticism would enable us all to enter more deeply into... planetary rhythms", "to fast from actions that pollute", "the cry of the earth"... if after reading it you say to yourself, "What a load of vulgar, immanentized, pantheistic, nature-worshipping crap"... I would say that you are correct and that The Star Chamber is proximating heresy.
XIII. To repeat: the CCCB does not have infallibility in teaching. Authority goes to the local bishop. But even here a consideration has to be made. Kellmeyer once again:
A bishop is only part of the Magisterium when that bishop teaches in union with all the bishops who have ever lived (always keeping in mind that the Pope is the bishop of Rome). Insofar as any bishop doesn't teach in union with the Magisterium, he has no authority over any Catholic, since he then teaches on his own authority and not Christ's... You see, when the usual suspects caterwaul about people not being the Magisterium, there is usually only one reason they scream: the person they attack has taken a position they don't like but can't refute, and they are trying to curry favor with a bishop who doesn't like that person or that person's position.You Canadians... That's right, I'm talking to you: Why do you think Mass at your parish resembles a cocktail party? Why do you cringe whenever the choir breaks out with "On Eagle's Wings"? Why do you think your priest talks about carbon deficits and anti-bottled water campaigns in his homily? Why does the architectural design of your parish remind you of a George Jetson cartoon? Why do you think those nuns are into Reiki, New Age crystals, labyrinths, numerology, tarot cards and God knows what other esoterica? Why do you think there are nutty professors at St. Paul University polluting the minds of young seminarians with all manner of heresy? Why do you think it offensive that a Marxist excommunicated priest is lecturing on Liberation Theology in the parish hall? Why do you think nothing is being done about that pro-abortion Catholic politician receiving Holy Communion? Why do you think Catholic schools, teachers unions and board trustees have been overtaken by a homosexualist agenda? Why do you think the Catholic Women's League signed an anti-family, pro-abortion document and submitted it to the United Nations? Why is that priest advisor at that hospital allowing for the possibility of using laboratory-stored embryonic stem cells for medical research? Why was that pope-bashing, atheistic, Malthus-inspired "humanitarian" allowed to pontificate at a Catholic gala? Why did you hear zilch from the chancery office during the "Baby Joseph" affair? Why does that feature article on "social justice" in your diocesan newspaper fill you with boredom and depression? Why is there silence surrounding the astonishing case of a former male prostitute/Catholic priest who is suing LifeSite News for quoting his own words? Why are many books advertised at the Novalis Publishers website written by heretics and borderline dwellers? Why is Development and Peace still in existence? Why has the Winnipeg Statement yet to be retracted?
XIV. The answer? The Shepherd of your diocese isn't doing his job, neither were his recent predecessors. Your bishop, who has the authority to deal with the wide assortment of catastrophes delineated above, is not exercising that authority. Be it out of fear and cowardice, or be it that he is uninterested, or be it he is lazy, or be it that he is ignorant of Church affairs, or be it that he is gullible and easily taken in by manipulative advisors, or be it that he thrives only in bureaucratic inertia, or be it that he wants to retain membership at the country club, or be it that he is a heretic, or be it he is preoccupied with unrelated matters. If for years nothing is said and if nothing is done, what fills the inflating void? Who breaches the silence? Who uncovers the reasons for the silence and inaction? The Canadian Catholic MSM? Heh. The evidence shows that those notorious Catholics with their websites and blogs have been the ones. As I wrote elsewhere:
Like raising Lazarus from the dead, the Lord of History commands: "Rise, My little ones... you that are deemed ignorant and weak and unworthy. You are not as such. Be filled with My wrath. My Bride has been corrupted from within. Wipe from your faces the dust of fifty years and defend My Church"... and lo!, the emergence of the Catholic blogging superforce. "Now it is time for My adversaries to sweat for a little while", sayeth the Lord. And there was silence in Heaven for about half an hour...XV. Recall in the outset whereat I stated my concern regarding the Canadian Catholic blogosphere becoming overlorded by our beloved "professional Catholics". Reflecting on this, the reader might now pose the following: "What do you mean by that, TH2? You're overreacting, you bombastic buffoon, you scurrilous scoundrel. Have you not been keeping abreast of recent news? The Vatican does read the Catholic blogs, is very much open to them, is interested in them, regardless of who posts. It has imposed no control over them. Did not the PCCS just invite 150 bloggers to Rome? And what's with this 'President of the Internet' thing? That's ridiculous, that's mockery, that's mean and uncharitable". Well, I am analyzing the circumstance specifically within a Canadian context, and what is of special concern to me in this context revolves around a blurb in a VIS issuance made about two years ago:
Other Pontifical Acts: VATICAN CITY, 26 FEB 2009 (VIS) - The Holy Father appointed... Fr. Thomas Rosica C.S.B. as consultor of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications. NA/.../ETZI:OPPES:ROSICA VIS 20090226 (70)So, then, we have the CEO of Canada's predominating Catholic media outlet appointed as a Consultor of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, which isn't small potatoes. Yet we also have, as quoted above, that same CEO who, in the public square, has repeatedly expressed utter contempt for Catholic websites/bloggers outside of his influence... Wait a second. That doesn't make sense. There's a disconnect. Why would the PCCS appoint someone so antagonistic to the Catholic blogger? So I'm scratching my head here, trying to figure out what's going on... Let's do some dredging.
XVI. We get our first clue from a CNA report wherein Fr. Rosica indicated he was "grateful to Pope Benedict XVI and to those at the Pontifical Council for Social Communications in Rome for their encouragement, trust and confidence". Obviously, the appointment is not conferred without the advisement of others. The question, then, becomes: How much was Pope Benedict involved in the selection process? The next step, then, is to consider what is the PCCS's purpose and who runs it. Established by Pope Pius XII in 1948, its mission is to support and promote evangelization with communications media. Today, the focus increasingly is on the "new media" for obvious reasons. The current PCCS President is Archbishop Claudio Maria Celli, appointed as such by B16 in 2007. ++Celli, perhaps with a twinkle in his eye, made an intriguing statement in a ZENIT report: "Our media should not become, allow me to say it this way, instruments of a religious or cultural fundamentalism". I'd give a thousand bucks to the person who can confirm exactly who or what is being referred to in that carefully worded statement. Still, I have a hunch. Regardless, one can easily see how Fr. Rosica would appreciate its vagueness and, further, use it as justification for going up against what he sees as the orthodox Catholic blogging menace (a free pass is given to liberals/heretics, e.g. Fr. Gravel.). Another factor to consider is the oft mentioned archaic modes of telecommunication utilized by the Vatican bureaucracy. Information travels by inefficient means over there, and it would be a good idea for someone to inform the crew that more effective means of data transmission have been devised since the invention of Morse Code. Just now they are starting to understand the definition of a "blog". Scenario:
Cardinal X: Hey, Giovanni. Whatsa dis thinga callda "blog"? I see it alla di time ona da teletype.You just want to pull your hair out... So from this it can be deduced that boys in Rome haven't been getting real-time news reports on the war that's been going on during the last 2 years between Development and Peace (with The Star Chamber, Salt + Light as allies) and LifeSite News along with SoCon... Ah, that's it: TIME!
Seminarian: Your Eminence, the word "blog" is derived from the phrase "web log". Its analogous to running a website from a computer, sort of like a daily diary. It operates on the internet, allowing one to write articles, post photographs and other images, including videos, all of which can be viewed by people around the world immediately after uploading.
Cardinal X: Is thata like a calculator?
Seminarian: Not really, Eminence.
Cardinal X: Like ehhhh... Che cosa è? ehhhh... Informazioni autostrada... English... ehhhh... the Highway of Super Information. Ah, bravo!
Seminarian: Well, Eminence, that's a variation on terminology used years ago and...
Cardinal X: Whatever! I donta hava time for dis. Letsa go for a smoke and a cappuccino.
XVII. Observe: The PCCS appointment occurred on February 26, 2009, just two weeks before LSN's breaking report on Development and Peace on March 12, 2009. It was then that things began to brew. By the time September 3, 2009 rolled around, the pot exploded:
Leading up to the Kennedy funeral last weekend, and in its aftermath, many so-called lovers of life and activists in the pro-life movement, as well as well-known colleagues in Catholic television broadcasting and media in North America, have revealed themselves to be not agents of life, but of division, destruction, hatred, vitriol, judgment and violence.It was from the date of that post onward that Fr. Rosica's venom against the Catholic blogosphere shifted into overdrive. Before that bizarre outburst, indeed prior to March 2009, was the PCCS aware of the potentiality for public temper tantrums? That is an open question. Still my guess is that, after news of the infamous blog post (and its aftermath) eventually filtered its way to the Holy Father, his reaction went something like this:
XVIII. Readers making it this far into the post might still think this whole situation is being overblown. Fair enough. Know, however, that "Guidelines for the Internet" already have been drafted up. These will be addressed momentarily. In the mean time, let's get a foretaste of what might come to pass if a particular someone gets his way. Courtesy of our friends at CNS, there is a revealing video interview. It was posted at the Salt + Light blog on November 10, 2009, soonafter the Kennedy funeral fiasco. CNS is pretty tight with its material (i.e. disallow embedding, copyright), so click the image below for viewing at the Salt+Light website. Don't forget to come back!
Okay, time for some counterpositioning. Let's get Voris on deck and check out what he has to say:
Is it just me or do you, too, notice a difference between the two? A crevasse separates them. One calls for an authoritarian "oversight", while the other refers to blogs democratically as "The Great Equalizer"; one is a priest, the other a layman; one is influential in Canada, the other is an American with growing influence; one is a power player in the Canadian hierarchy; the other is likely despised by many in the US hierarchy; one says "it means nothing" to have a blog, the other sees its utility for exposing the truth; one calls some Catholic blogs "downright awful", the other deems them as "spiritually transformative"; one says Catholic blogs disseminate "negativity", while the other says they wield the "hammer of heresy"; one wants to put controls on the technology, the other says it's too late because the genie is already out of the bottle. It's a fork in the road. No question which route the Americans are taking. They cherish individualism. The Brits, on the other hand, are now talking about a "Guild of Catholic Bloggers". Not sure about that. But Canada? We're more communitarian, yes. In my opinion, it's a tough call. Is there a middle ground here? A via media for the "new social media"? Whatever happens, the cross-comparison of these two videos points to an irony: "The Great Equalizer" ascription by Voris, this democratization of the blogosphere, analogizes the Conciliarism now operative within bishop's conferences and the post-V2 careerist class in general. That is, the democratic "we are church" mentality, a greater role of the laity and so forth. But notice: It would seem that this applies only to liberal dissidents. Why? Because Catholic bloggers, dominated by orthodox/trad/conservative Catholics, are in effect the new "populists", functioning in democratic mode. Would you like mustard on your "double standard" sandwich?
XIX. Thus we come to the "Guidelines for the Internet" as decreed by The President of the Internet. It was published in the Catholic Register on January 8, 2010. Likely, the article was written in reaction to the Kennedy controversy since its title is "The Duty and Obligation of Being Pro-Life". It first lists and describes "10 rules for handling disagreement as Christians", followed by commentary on the internet, meaning a "this-is-the-way-things-are-going-to-be-run" message. Some fisking to start [TH2 analysis in bolded square brackets]:
Visual and electronic media need a certain kind of content. They thrive on brevity, speed, change, urgency, variety and feelings.[Media does not "thrive", as if self-animated. People freely provide the "content". Notice also the insertion of "feelings", with the exclusion of intelligent thought] But thinking [there ya go] takes time, needs silence and the methodical skills of logic. [This insinuates that bloggers lack logic and analytical capabilities] Nevertheless these new forms of media have undermined the intellectual discipline that we once had when our main tools of communication were books or print publications. ["undermined"? Why does it seem that someone thinks something has been stolen from him? Properly, the internet should be deemed as an addition and/or advancement to the means of communication] This is not a good development. [Why? All that has increased is the speed and quantity of data transmission, viewed almost instantaneously from almost anywhere, now without inhibiting intermediaries like the Catholic MSM, bishop influence, etc.] On the Internet there is no accountability, no code of ethics, and no responsibility for one's words and actions. [The internet is a new, emerging technology. Any innovation as such will, in the beginning, have no guidelines for the simple fact that it is new. The underlying issue more so relates to how websites/blogs have heretofore exposed error, heresy and apostasy in the Church, where beforehand only a few had access to this information, allowing them to do what bloggers are doing now, but did not do before for whatever reason] One of the challenges for the Church is that the Internet can destroy or confuse the hierarchy of information providing that church agencies have worked so hard to establish. [Some examples of this confusion or destruction would be nice. "Hierarchy of information"? What does that mean specifically? It means that the information is no longer filtered and/or censored through "professional Catholic" channels] Websites and blogs tend to concentrate on negative messages.[Generalizing. Please provide specific examples] Christians are known as the people who are against everything. [By who? Why say "everything"? Against "all things"? No. Against "some things"? Yes. More generalizing. Distinctions are required here] If anything, we should be known as the people who are for something, something positive that can transform lives and engage and impact the culture. [So does that mean we should remain silent when anti-life, anti-family and/or anti-Catholic issues arise in the public square? How can Catholics be "for" these? Should we let the CCCB deal with them? When in the last while has it ever tackled the hard issues, not just the easy ones? Its main concerns are with looking good to the secular world, social justice and anti-bottled water campaigns] Allow me to offer some guidelines [i.e. decrees] for Catholics on the Internet who have developed a wide-ranging set of blogs and websites, some of which claim to be "Pro-Life" or "Catholic" websites.[a potshot directed especially against LifeSite News and SoCon or Bust]. Such sites with life issues and a variety of Catholic matters. Many times these sites set themselves above the Church,[How can deference to the Magisterium or quotations from papal encyclicals, etc. be equalized with "set themselves above the Church"?] and do not abide by any journalistic ethics or concern for the unity of the Church, the integrity and truth of the stories. [Is this a inference that, in recent times, the Canadian Catholic MSM always has abided by journalistic ethics?] Writers or masters of such sites do not realize the confusion, harm and disunity they bring to faithful Catholics ["harm" not to "faithful Catholics", but to "professional Catholics", this must be emphasized] and those who would like to support the causes of life, but are often deterred from doing so because of false information, inflammatory, erroneous stories filled with half-truths, and uncharity that is found in spades on the Internet.[Like the infamous blog post and radio interview in September 2009? Let alone the rest. LSN does "the work of Satan"!] To believe in the Gospel of Life means to humbly bring the Gospel message to the world.[Does not the NT also say to boldly preach? In season and out of season? Our Lord: "you brood of vipers". Look at the troublemaker St. Paul was, causing riots wherever he went. John the Baptist wasn't exactly Mr. Congeniality. Just ask Herod] To believe in the Gospel of Life means that we do will not hate, revile or destroy other human beings as we strive to preserve the dignity of every human life, from womb to tomb: from conception to natural death. [Once again, no examples, quotations or otherwise provided. Obviously, the hate, revulsion and destruction is something apperceived singularly by "professional Catholics" because of the work and investigations conducted by Catholic websites/blogs]Now let's go through the guidelines:
1) Always remember the superiority of the real world over the virtual world. If you are spending more time interacting with people over the Internet than you do in the real world, then you need to seriously curtail your online activity.The preponderance of reality relative to virtual cyberspace is common sense. Or, philosophically, the external objective world over a priori subjectivism, Thomism over Kantianism. Why is it suggested that persons spend more time on the Internet than interacting in the real world? Is someone claiming a special "right" to command a time reduction on the computer? This is not necessarily a matter of faith, morals or Church teaching. If a priest admonishes for a moral infraction or an error regarding the Faith, then obedience is in order, Confession and so forth. Yet the real question is this: Why is it being said that Internet activity should be "seriously curtailed" at all? Could it be because antecedent online activity has uncovered corruption within the Church of which some powers therein would rather not have open to scrutiny by the faithful? In sum, Decree No. 1 effectively tells inquisitive Catholic bloggers to "shut up".
2) Don't ever say anything on the Internet that you wouldn't say in person. If you wouldn’t call someone a terrible name to their face, don't call them that online (and if you would call them that to their face, perhaps you need to see your confessor). Don't write anything in anger. If you write a post or comment on a blog or on a forum in anger, be sure to preview it before posting. Then delete it.Let's see..."Taliban Catholicism", "work of Satan", "somebody's basement in the Ottawa Valley", "agents of... destruction, hatred, vitriol, judgment and violence", etc. Seems like someone forgot his own recommendation. After writing a post/comment in anger, why even "preview" it and "then delete it"? Makes no sense. Moreover, something written in anger does not necessarily invalidate the ideas/arguments presented as such. Anger is an emotion and emotions follow intellectual apprehension. Basic Thomistic epistemology. Something has to be understood before one can be angry with it. When this blogger was a young punk he stole a ball from a neighbour's yard. His mother came to understand what happened, then yelled to him that it is wrong to steal, whacked him over the head, then ordered him to return the ball. She was angry but was nevertheless correct. Heat and light can be concurrent. Was Christ not angry when he overturned the tables in the temple? In sum, Decree No. 2 effectively says "be nice", speak only of puppy dogs, sunflowers, moonbeams and other smiley face phenomena that doesn't jog the conscious.
3) Don't stereotype people. It is very easy to stereotype the people we "meet" over the internet. If someone says he likes the Traditional Latin Mass, don’t assume that he is an "angry Traditionalist" who rejects Vatican II completely. The truth is that most people don't fall into nice and neat categories. Remember to just debate actual arguments raised, not positions you assume the person also holds. Don't think you actually know people you only encounter online. You don't.This is the standard argument that refuses to acknowledge differences and distinctions between people and ideas. It's one form of Political Correctness that negates any type of label or otherwise swirls them into an indistinct slurry because "most people don't fall into nice and neat categories". But the issue is not about people as such as much as deference to Church teaching. Is there no difference between someone who writes that only men can be priests and someone who proclaims that women can become priests as well? Which one is consistent with magisterial teaching? John Allen, Jr., an ally of El Presidente on this matter, uses the term "tribalism" when characterizing orthodox Catholics, trads, neo-cons, pro-lifers, feminists and "social justice" types. He sees all of these as a disparate set of groups, a kind of egalitarian mosaic, all existing on a flat "ideological" plane devoid of preponderance. Everything is grey shaded, there is no right or wrong in the essentials of the Faith. The evident duality (not multiplicity) between similarly minded trads, orthodox, neo-cons and pro-lifers contra the alignment of "social justice", New Age and feminist types is de-emphasized. Faith, morals and teaching are reduced to a particularized "ideology". Instead, a "middle-ground" must be sought after, which seems to mimic some Hegelian Synthesis after overcoming Thesis and Anti-Thesis. Allen: "the Salt and Light network in Canada is a rare media outlet that's both unmistakably Catholic and yet open to varying expressions of that identity... led by Basilian Fr. Thomas Rosica, who not only has vision but also business moxie... Salt and Light produces... features on Catholic saints... heroes for both progressives and traditionalists, yet taking an approach which cuts deeper than ideological readings". Whatever his merits as a commentator, Allen's view on this subject is insidious, especially because of the subtlety involved, falsely coming across as "moderate" when, in fact, it is relativist. In sum, Decree No. 3 says "do not identify those forces inimical to the Faith".
How can "good intentions" always be assumed when (despite the evidence), for the past two years during the D+P affair, a consistent pattern has emerged: denials, delays and vilification of questioners? How can good intentions be assumed when The Star Chamber promises inquiry yet always postpones on producing investigation results? How can good intentions be assumed when Abp. Grecco said that D+P "came under a concerted Internet-based media attack by certain militant advocacy groups and individuals"? How can good intentions be assumed when D+P sent out a document stating that LSN is "part of the far right wing fringe element of North American society and have themselves been associated with groups and individuals who have resorted to violence"? How can good intentions be assumed when D+P lawyered up to block a Freedom of Information Request made by LSN? How can good intentions be assumed when, just the other day, Abp. Martin Currie admitted that the original CCCB report, on the D+P sponsored pro-abortion group in Mexico (as evidenced by LSN in March 2009), was co-written by D+P itself?!  How can good intentions be assumed when one is called a "Taliban Catholic"? We could go on and on. In sum, Decree No. 4 says "ignore manifest wrongs".4) Always assume the good intentions of others. If someone writes something that could possibly be interpreted multiple ways, assume the best interpretation. Writing is a difficult task, and often what we write isn’t exactly what we mean. Give people the same benefit of the doubt that you want to be given.
5) Remember who the real enemy is. It's not some heterodox blogger or pro-abortion advocate. It's Satan. Those who do things that support his reign are slaves of Satan, and our duty is not to try to defeat them, but emancipate them and help them become sons of and daughters of their true Father in heaven. We must resist evil in all its forms, but those who advocate for evil need to be converted, not conquered.What in the world (or out of this world) is being referred to here? Is it what the media philosopher Marshall McLuhan said: "the Prince of the World is a very good electric engineer"? But why focus exclusively on an immaterial spirit? It would be like punching fog. Is all evil attributable to The Stench? What about freely chosen actions and words of human beings? The evil is not necessarily the heterodox blogger and pro-abortion advocate as such, but the heresy they spread, the act of abortion. A distinction must be made between sin and sinner. Hate the former, love the latter. Yes, the enemy Satan must be identified and fought against with prayer. But why cannot heretics and abortionists directly be challenged with words, however harsh? For in this sense they are enemies of society. And it is not so much a matter of "conversion" or "conquering" as a pointing to truth. In sum, Decree No. 5 redirects due attention away from enemies of the Faith, diverting and adding it to an evil immateriality to which the faithful are already attentive.
6) Remember that God resists the proud. Just because someone has a keyboard, a website, a screen or a personal blog does not make them a theologian, a canonist, a Church historian or a liturgist. It is easy to look upon them like the Pharisee did to the publican. Instead of quickly jumping in to tell them how they are wrong, first say a prayer for them and then gently lead them to a fuller understanding of the truth.True, not all bloggers are experts in the fields listed. But it isn't hard to see in this "guideline" a certain condescension that works to inhibit Catholic bloggers from learning more about the Faith, of which information is voluminous and freely accessible on the internet: the Catholic Encyclopedia, the summa of the Common Doctor, encyclicals, books and so forth. Again, no mention is made of the almost mechanical way Catholic bloggers refer and defer to both to the Magisterium (e.g. Catechism) and to priest bloggers, who are certainly expert enough to address the subjects outlined above. In sum, Decree No. 6 is a kind of Internet Quietism, saying that online activity should consist mainly of passive observation instead of active participation or, dare I say, direct engagement.
XX. Now let's make it clear that Fr. Rosica's idea of how the internet should be utilized for evangelizing and apologetic purposes is, in a certain sense, not inconsistent with the well-known Inter Mirifica document of Vatican II (Decree on the Means of Social Communication). Perhaps it was even a form of inspiration for Salt + Light TV since in the decree's conclusion it states: "Rather will the media, like salt and light, add savor to the earth and light to the world". We also find, as shown in the CNS video above, his justification for "oversight" of the internet by the Church universal and dioceses:
But it also goes on to say:It is for the bishops to oversee activities and projects of this sort in their own dioceses, to promote and, where they touch the public apostolate, to regulate them, including those under the control of exempt religious... It is the Church's birthright to use and own any of these media which are necessary or useful for the formation of Christians and for pastoral activity. Pastors of souls have the task of instructing and directing the faithful how to use these media in a way that will ensure their own salvation and perfection and that of all mankind.
For the rest, it will be principally for the layman to animate these media with a Christian and human spirit and to ensure that they live up to humanity's hopes for them, in accordance with God's design....thus we arrive at the core of this debate, the Zero Hour mark. That is, the imminent all-out war to be waged on the internet between the hierarchy and laymen, between bishop conferences and Catholic websites/bloggers. But why is this happening? Why is there rebellion in Canada? Obviously, something has gone wrong since Vatican II. Recently, this writer made a comment at a blog whereat this very issue was addressed:
The blogosphere/internet is a Revolution comparable to Gutenberg. But I would emphasize that it is not technology per se that is wholly responsible for all the blowback now occurring. The internet is just a more efficient and quicker means of communication over more expansive distances. Between words printed on paper and words posted on a blog is only a difference in degree, not kind. So the question that the cleric under scrutiny in your post (including the bishops, theologians, Catholic MSM, etc.) that constitute the "professional Catholic" class in Canada have to ask themselves is this: Why is there even blowback at all? That is the question.XXI. The Catholic Church in Canada is in crisis. A division is becoming more and more manifest by the day. A battle is now underway, greatly prompted by the Development and Peace scandal, and much of it is fought out over the internet. Two camps are forming. On the one side you have the CCCB and its allied "professional Catholics". These include: regional bishop's conferences; Novalis Publishers; academics at, for example, St. Paul University; chancery office bureaucrats; teachers unions/trustees; RCIA directors; parish tyrants with their variegated "lay ministries"; myriad "social justice" groups; the habitless hordes who reside at what were once convents (e.g. IBVM); the Catholic MSM (Western Catholic Reporter, Prairie Messenger, B.C. Catholic, Catholic Register and, of course, Salt + Light TV). Note well that these papers get their news feeds from CNS and some embed Salt+Light videos. This camp is the aforementioned Ancien Régime du Nord, comprised of aging Catholics, liberal and lukewarm. Many are downright heretics and/or apostates. They are the new Arians. To these individuals, the internet is deemed a clear and present danger to their current domination of ideas and, more importantly to them, their livelihoods. They are correct in coming to that conclusion.
If there were no apostate bishops, if there were no Baum's composing Marxist-inspired tracts, if RCIA directors had been properly catechizing, if school kids were not politicized by babybooming "Catholic" teachers enraptured by whatever trendy cause, if homilies were not exclusively devoted to "God is love", if nuns weren't worshipping the rain forests, if power hungry parish tyrants would understand that they are not consecrated priests... if these (and more) had not occurred over the last 4 to 5 decades, I will confidently say that there would not have been any blowback from the Catholic blogosphere in the modern day. Support and a defence thereof from the secular world would have been the mainstays. If there was a sufficient degree of faithfulness to the Magisterium in the first place, there would be no need to revolt.
When for decades you have a very select group of "professional Catholics" running the show, leftist and skewed to heterodoxy in approach and viewpoint, when for years letters to the editor are ignored, when time after time you have qualified and knowledgeable people (academics, writers, etc.) continually shut out from the newspapers, journals, publishers and other educational/apologetic programs because they are too "orthodox" or "judgmental" or "uncharitable"... and then when the blogosphere emerges, you at last have an outlet to slay the dragon.
The current situation of the "professional Catholic" class in Canada can be analogized with Hugh Hefner as he exists today: a fossilizing, self-absorbed, smelly old man wandering around a mansion in a gaudy smoking jacket, stupid enough to think that the chicks are still attracted to him.
XXII. In the other camp you have, in essence, the Catholic faithful, not as uniformed and uneducated and unqualified and obtuse as might be assumed (this is a great shock to "professional Catholics"). Representative examples would be LifeSite News, Catholic Insight, The Interim and a rag tag team of bloggers. Its members are generally younger in age and its priests/religious tend to be more traditionally-minded. Lay people see the internet as the answer to a prayer made long ago and now wield it to the terror of the bureaucratic establishment. For years this second camp has suffered in silence, putting up with the lies, distortions and opportunism said and done about the Faith, all the while watching Catholicism fade out of Canadian society whilst under the watch of the liberal dissidents. Now they've pretty well had it and effectively say: "Take your social justice and shove it up your ass". Not because they are "uncharitable", not because they are right, not because they demand a new guide to steer them through a society increasingly pagan and atheistic. But because the Magisterium is right, the Magisterium is the guide for Catholics, to which they refer and defer. How this war will turn out is a hard call. No doubt things are going to get ferocious during the interim. The wildcard in this whole situation is the bishops. Not The Star Chamber as a body, but individual bishops with authority, like a Prendergast, who have the courage and faith to opt out and do something decisive. My personal opinion is that most of Canada's shepherd's have been de-balled by Political Correctness, so I don't expect much. I would love to be proven wrong on this issue.
Enough said... Go Canada!
NOTES / REFERENCES
1. Letter, "Archdiocese of Ottawa Cancels Guest Speaker's presentation", Ottawa Archdiocese, April 1, 2011. LINK
2. M.C. Hoffman, "Hundreds of Thousands in Canadian Lent Collection Money Funding Pro-Abortion Groups in Mexico", LifeSite News, March 12, 2009.
3. The restriction of funds to Development and Peace by Archbishop Thomas Collins of Toronto is a temporary measure, pending findings. But who knows when or if the CCCB will admit pro-abortion group funding by D+P? It was more of a "slap on the wrist" than a formal move against D+P activities.
4. CCCB, "Comment on cancellation of Share Lent speaker", April 4, 2001. See also P.B. Crane, "Canada's Bishops decide to re-investigate D&P partner over latest scandal", LifeSite News, April 5, 2011.
5. Quoted in M. Swan, "Swirling D&P controversy raises concerns about fundraising backlash", Catholic Register, April 13, 2011.
6. A copy of Mr. Casey's letter to Development and Peace members can be found here.
7. See M. Swan, "'Nasty' LifeSite allegations are harmful to Mexican group's cause", Catholic Register, May 21, 2010; "Questions still" (editorial), Catholic Register, April 6, 2011.
8. R. de Souza, "Does D&P not get it?", Catholic Register, April 5, 2011.
9. M. Pattison, "Webinar focuses on Catholic media's role, relationship with bishops", Catholic News Service, July 29, 2010.
10. J. Fierro, "He's The Man, But Does Phoenix Need A Bishop Gabino Zavala?", Los Angeles Lay Catholic Mission, December 2003.
11. J. Martin, "Catholic Bloggers Aim to Purge", America, October 25, 2010.
12. Cf. L. Goodstein, "Vatican Is Said to Force Jesuit Off Magazine", New York Times, May 7, 2005.
13. Allen's "Taliban Catholicism" was first quoted by Rachel Zoll at the Associated Press. See also J.L. Allen, Jr., "After 'Taliban Catholicism', now 'Taliban Orthodoxy'?, National Catholic Reporter, March 4, 2010. For other reports see H. White, "Alternative Catholic Media Holding Hierarchy’s Feet to the Fire of Orthodoxy: Michael Voris of RealC", LifeSite News, November 4, 2010; and W. Oddie, "Attacks build up on the 'Taliban' and the 'McCarthyites' of the Catholic blogosphere", Catholic Herald, October 27, 2010.
14. Quoted in R. Csillag, "Let there be (Salt) Light", Toronto Star, February 24, 2011. RCTV's Michael Voris' response to Fr. Rosica's and Allen's usage of "Taliban Catholicism" can be viewed in a video here.
15. J.L. Allen, Jr., "The Vatican beyond its worst days, and Rome beyond the Vatican", National Catholic Reporter, March 4, 2011.
16. Quotes respectively from T. Rosica, "Senator Edward Kennedy’s funeral: On mercy and misery", Salt + Light Television (blog), September 3, 2009; C. Wooden, "Catholic blogosphere: Council looks at promoting charity, truth online", Catholic News Service, October 30, 2009; T. Rosica, "Statement by Fr. Thomas Rosica regarding Bell TV, Salt + Light Television (blog), February 10, 2011; G. Hamilton, "Two Solitudes", National Post, May 5, 2011; B. Mattson, "Knocking the kinks out of the Internet", B.C. Catholic, April 5, 2011; P.B. Casey, "Father Rosica facebooks students in his own way at UBC", B.C. Catholic, April 7, 2011.
17. Quoted in "Transcript: Father Rosica Interview with Bob Dunning", LifeSite News, September 14, 2009.
18. M. Gervais, "Basilian deacon puts sharing at forefront of religious aims", The Windsor Star, January 18, 1986, p. E6.
21. K. Shaidle, "Like a Time-Release Capsule", Catholic World Report, March 2011.
22. B. Mattson, op. cit.
23. The CCCB's "Statement on the Information Highway" can be found here at the EWTN website.
24. Quoted in J.H. Westen, "CCCB President on Websites Confronting D&P: 'they’re not part of the church, they’re not Catholic'", LifeSite News, June 25, 2009.
25. Code of Canon Law, bk. II, pt. II, sec. II, Cann. 753.
26. Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger with Vittorio Messori, The Ratzinger Report, An Exclusive Interview on the State of the Church (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1985), p. 59.
27. CCCB, "A Pastoral Letter on the Christian Ecological Imperative from the Social Affairs Commission", October 4, 2003.
28. "Fr. Thomas Rosica named consultor to Pontifical Social Communications Council", Catholic News Agency, February 26, 2009 (author not indicated).
29. M. Lago, "Catholic media also need 'info-ethics'", ZENIT, January 31, 2008. A Wikileaks document of a US Embassy cable on February 20, 2009 reads: "Structurally, the Pontifical Council for Social Communications and the Vatican Press Office are weak. The former applies the Church's teachings to the field of communications and is not involved in shaping the Pope's message". Source: The Guardian, "US embassy cables: Vatican's 'moral megaphone' is faulty", December 10, 2010.
30. See G. Hamilton, op. cit.
31. T. Rosica, "Senator Edward Kennedy’s funeral: On mercy and misery", Salt + Light Television (blog), September 3, 2009.
32. T. Rosica, "The Duty and Obligation of Being Pro-Life", Catholic Register, January 8, 2010.
33. J.L. Allen, Jr., "Thoughts on post-tribal Catholicism", National Catholic Reporter, April 15, 2011.
34. Quoted in J-H. Westen, "Ottawa Archbishop Objects to 'Business as Usual' with Development and Peace", LifeSite News, October 20, 2009.
35. See "D&P Accuses LifeSitenews of Association with Groups that Use Violence; 'Far Right Wing Fringe'", LifeSite News, March 17, 2010 (author not indicated).
36. J.H. Westen, "Archbishop: D&P co-wrote the CCCB report exonerating pro-abort partners, slamming LSN", LifeSite News, April 21, 2011.
37. Written by McLuhan in a letter dated June 6, 1969 to the famous Catholic philosopher Jacques Maritain. Reprinted in The Medium and the Light: Reflections on Religion, eds. E. McLuhan and J. Szklarek (Toronto: Stoddart Publishing Company Limited, 1999), pp. 71-72. Subnote that during Vatican II McLuhan was an advisor for the Decree on the Means of Social Communication (see main text for more).
38. Decree on the Means of Social Communication, ch. II, para. 32, In: (gen. ed. A. Flannery) Vatican Council II, The Conciliar and Post-Conciliar Documents (Boston: St. Paul & Books Media, 1992 revised edition), p. 292. Originally promulgated on December 4, 1963.
39. Ibid., ch. II, para. 20 (p. 291), ch. I, para. 3 (p. 285).
40. Ibid., ch. I, para. 3 (p. 285).