Is It Just Me?
I started noticing it some time ago. At Mass in Rome – undisclosed time and location; wonderful church, but there are thousands of them there only in the Centro Storico, so I have not revealed anything 😉 – the homily was entirely, and I mean entirely, devoted to the simple fact that there is no salvation outside of the Church. Which doesn’t mean one who dies a Protestant is ipso facto damned, etc. You know, the whole enchilada.
Whilst the priest refrained from saying that, therefore, Proselitysm is the contrary of solemn nonsense, there can be no doubt the watchful pewsitter perfectly understood the message.
It has happened, in the meantime, on several other occasions. In England, Germany, and Italy. Even in Belgium. Yes, even in Belgium!
It happens now with beautiful regularity, and I start to wonder. Does it happen because the Pope has expressed himself in a heretical way on so many subjects, that it is difficult to listen to a homily and not notice the difference with what Francis says? Or is it because more and more priests – even V II priests, but sound ones – have decided that their duty now consist in guerrilla warfare or, if you prefer, counter-insurgency operations from the pulpit, but without mentioning the main culprit?
I have now lost count of the homilies where some anti-Francis point was made very clearly. It even seems to me – but I might be biased – that the number of anodyne “do not kick the cat”-homilies is decreasing, as a number of priests who were given to such an exercise now feel a duty to say a couple of things straight, implicitly – alas, very seldom openly – making clear who the target of the criticism is.
A silent counteroffensive is, I think, forming. The Pope confuses the faithful, therefore the priest must drive home a point or two. They are no lions, mind. It is very seldom they even mention the man. But this is, if you will, exactly the point. They are saying to the wise: “ignore him; and please understand I cannot say more”.
I do not know to what extent a priest cannot “say more”. But we, the laity, surely can.
Not encumbered with a nasty bishop as our superior, and in no risk of being transferred to some elephant cemetery for being Catholic, we can say it as it is, carrying on and amplifying the message of the priest. And the message is very simple: do not listen to the old man. Stick to sound Catholicism instead.
If anyone of you could briefly report of what happens in his own neck of the wood and whether he also notices the trend I have described, I would be very grateful for two lines in the comment box.
It might be just me. It might be that I read all the bollocks of the man and am therefore more easily led to comparisons between that and a sound homily. Or it can be that the message is being sent increasingly more forcefully to the faithful: don’t listen to Francis, he does not speak for us.