Some of you will have read of my rather perplexing experiences in Bruges, Flanders. Rather a couple more – says my stats table – have read, or at least clicked on, my several posts about the Heresy in Austria.
In what appears to be the deserved punishment for the Vatican’s incompetence and culpable inaction, the heresy now spreads to Flanders, where – as I write this – no less than 211 priests have signed a sort of petition explaining things the poor idiots “don’t understand”.
Unfortunately, your truly can help with German, but he is totally at a loss to interpret that strange-sounding mixture of guttural sounds called Flemish. For this reason, I will have to rely on the always excellent Rorate Caeli for a list of those things the poor idiots – or worse; read my post about Bruges – don’t understand. They seem to be the following:
1) We do not understand why the leadership of our local communities (such as parishes) is not entrusted to a man or woman, married or unmarried, professional or volunteer, who received the necessary formation.
2) We need dedicated shepherds. We do not understand why these fellow faithful cannot lead Sunday services.
3) In every living community we need liturgical leaders. We do not understand why – when there is no priest – a service of Word and Communion is not allowed.
4) We do not understand why skilled laypeople and formed religious educators can not preach. We need the Word of God.
5) We do not understand why faithful of good will who remarried after a divorce have to be denied Communion. They are equally part of the community.
I regret the demise of those blessed times when a slap in the face was the way such questions – when posed by, say, an unruly child; adults would obviously, being adults, not pose them – were dealt with. Unfortunately, nowadays the children aren’t treated that way anymore, and many of them seem to have become priest.
Why they did that, is beyond me. Unless they’re homosexual or pedophiles, of course.
Still, I do not want to hide from you the fact that in my modest opinion, the biggest culprit for this mess is the Vatican, and one wonders how many countries – or parts thereof – will launch such “initiatives” before someone in the right chambers wakes up, smells the coffee and starts being Catholic instead of regaling us with the usual platitudes about how good bishops are supposed to be, without caring to do anything when they – regularly – don’t.
The northern European barn is slowly, but surely burning. I can’t hear the Vatican sirens anywhere.
The time for empty talk has passed. This is the time for sharp and decisive action, for exemplary excommunications, for punishment and restoration of sound Catholic thinking. Beginning, of course, from Cardinal Schönborn but now – alas – having to go much further than some diocese lost in Mitteleuropa.
The Neville Chamberlain policy didn’t work. It never could, it never will.