The Flak Against The Heresy.
I am, surely, not the only one who has noticed a big increase in page views in October. I had almost 190,000 page views during the month, a new record. Whilst I have been very active during the month, and particularly during the Synod, I am sure that we bloggers could literally feel the increase of audience, the mass of people suddenly deciding to go to their computers and look on the Internet, to see what is happening.
Many confused Catholics, no doubt, turned to their PC monitor for some orientation. Many rightly angry Catholics turned to it to vent their rage, and hear some words of encouragement. Others, no doubt, turned to the Internet in anguish, as their world crumbled around them, or – if they did not feel so strongly – as they felt that a world, the world perhaps of their parents and grandparents, was about to crumble, and hopefully did not like the prospect.
If you run a blog, you can measure the temperature of the Catholic world around you; because the flood lifts all boats, and a flood of clicks lifts all blog stats.
It is sad, but at the same time encouraging, that this spikes always come when Francis gives scandal. It is sad, because it is another sign of how big the scandal is. It is encouraging, because it means that we, the sane Catholics still around, have a good opportunity to be heard by new, normally uninterested, mainstream Catholics, or even “c”atholics. Some of them will like what they read. They will perhaps come back after a week or two; and then more often; and then more often still. Some of these will be gained to the cause. Let this blog gain one soul to Christ, and it will not have been in vain.
Which leads me, rather elegantly, to the theme of the day: the stats tell us that everytime Francis gives scandal, the sea is full of fishes, and if we have the time and inclination to throw our nets the results could be excellent. Many of those who roam the Internet after Francis’ scandals are, methinks, seeking orientation. I imagine the usual lapsed Catholic (as I used to be), just surfing around to see what’s what; and finding, God willing, a wealth of passionate Catholic bloggers telling him that no, the faith of his grandmothers, or of which he has read in the books, has not died. It is there: strong, fiery, proud of itself, conscious of being ultimately invincible, not scared by one hundred heretical popes, and as solid as granite.
I write this blog for people like me. For people, I mean, like I was when I was a lapsed Catholic. Yearning for a truth I could not find, and sick of effeminate priests and their own pinko religion of equality and social justice. What I very confusedly sought – confusedly, because I had never found the like – was a forceful encounter with the Truth: truth said without shame, and without fluffy feelings. Truth shared out of love for truth and love for neighbour, not social approval. Truth eternal, not depending from fashion.
If I had found my blog in past years, I am sure it would have had a lasting effect on me, because it would have been a clear answer to my perhaps unexpressed, but deeply felt need: give me the old religion.
The statistics teach me that there are a lot of ” old me” around, confusedly searching for they do not know exactly what, but with a definite aim in mind: a good dollop of solid, unchangeable, truth in a world of political correctness. Every time Francis gives scandal, they turn to the Internet in droves, confusedly seeking for answers to confusedly formulated questions.
When this happens, and it will continue to happen, we must be ready. We must be the Flak against the heresy, the cowardice, or the stupidity of so much that goes for “c”atholicism around. The post-Francis-scandal Internet surfer must see Francis’ bombers in the sky, and the cannons of the bloggers down, shooting like it’s WW II, and making the sky hell with their fire. They must have a clear perception that there are an awful lot of people around – the bloggers, and the commenters – who just refuse to go with the flow and think with the herd. They must go to bed after their surfing thinking: “heavens, I would never have thought that there are so many people so passionate about Catholicism; so much so, that they defend it against their own Pope! A truth of that sort must be a source of great strenght and consolation!”.
Granted, for some the shock will be huge. If you have lived in the gaga-land of political correctness and universal salvation, this and many other blogs must hit you like a fist on the nose. But then again, this is a fist that will not be so easily forgotten; and one day, perhaps very far away, the fist might be remembered again; and who knows, perhaps it will judged with a different spirit, and considered a salutary lesson. It would not be the first time. I never mind whether some more or less slow-witted atheist or liberal catholic is angry at me in 2014. Come 2034 or 2044, he might well think differently.
Every time Francis gives great scandal, a great opportunity opens for us, Catholic bloggers and commenters, to cast our net. God’s providence will steer some fishes our way, so that by helping them, we may help ourselves. We must make Francis work for us, and make the best of a situation that can only be called atrocious. We must work so that the initial shock of the tepid, unknowing man of the world may be used to his advantage in a time to come. We must never go soft for fear that people may “go away”. Evangelisation isn’t the same as marketing, though I am sure your typical “patheos” blogger or reader doesn’t get the difference.
We, the Catholic bloggers and commenters, are the flak against the heresy.
Let us show to the newbies what fierce gunners we are.