I have recently taken to reading George Tyrell’s ‘Oil and Wine’ and have been quite enjoying it (hence the silence on the blog). I daresay that a review of it will be forthcoming… eventually. Coupled with my teaching of Catechism and certain events, this has gotten me to think harder on what exactly constitutes the Body of Christ.
There are certain Catholics, and I’m sure many of you have met them, that hold an extreme papal-centric view of salvation. One must be within the Roman Communion to be saved. Period. If you are a destitute Ethiopian Christian, too bad! If you were a Russian peasant in 1567 (because everyone knows that there was a schism in 1054 that magically separated the “East” from the West), then your disobedient schismatic hind-end is off to hell. If you were raised in an SSPX chapel and continue to attend, then God help your lost soul.
You went against your patriarch due to liturgical changes? How original and unprecedented.
Needless to say, I find this puritanical view usually comes from those who are most insulated. So many quick to declare what the problems are, who the enemy is, what MUST be done, and so on. Some Latin Massers are oftentimes the worst offenders. After all, if it wasn’t for that wicked “Novus Ordo” things would be far better today!
BEHOLD the WICKED and IRREVERENT NewLiturgy!
While I certainly have my opinions on things that could be done to counter many of our current problems, I acknowledge that I am not a magical answer-man. I am more interested in the causes of why things went wrong in the first place or rather whether they actually did. A vision for the future is not possible without a clear knowledge of the past, something most traditionalist Catholics – by definition – lack any interest in. This is why I would be interested on researching and writing about the original modernists and the time in which they lived, were I ever to get a break from my job and my fiction writing.
In the meantime we need to look around at the world today and reflect on something essential: we are all sinners and we have no business thinking of ourselves in a mythical “state of grace”. Perhaps the Church is not a doofie Argentinan in a white robe. Perhaps it doesn’t constitute the gang of half-senile old men in Rome who wear silly red pajamas and usually contribute nothing of note. Perhaps the gaggle of self-righteous church ladies gossiping about the parishoners are not the apex of Christianity. Perhaps… Christ’s Bride is written in the hearts of those fleeing from the sword of the Saracen. Perhaps God’s grace lives within those poor godless souls who wander through the mire of a decrepit society, grasping for any grain of truth or love in their chaotic lives. Perhaps the Church is twenty-one men kneeling in the sand with the words “Lord Jesus Christ” on their lips as the knife of the infidel severs their throat.