25 September 2015

I Need a Break

I'm not quitting.  Not yet.  But I need a little break. 

In the meantime, read this entry at The Remnant.  The author reflects a good deal of what I think, and says it better than I could.  But I don't necessarily agree with all of it, and so I don't adopt it whole. It is a good piece to think over though.

I would particularly note the author's nod to the bull Unam Sanctam of Pope Boniface VIII:

...Nor should it be taken to mean that I do not believe every soul should be in communion with the Holy Father, for the sake of their salvation. In fact, I believe, as it is an infallibly defined dogma of the Catholic Church that it is necessary for all souls to be subject to the Roman pontiff, for the sake of their salvation. 

The last thing I want to do is to lead anyone, myself included, astray from the only Church Christ founded, or from his necessary duty of submission to the Roman pontiff, whomever that person may be. I assure each of you that I have never tried to do so. If I have harmed anyone's faith in the Church in the slightest, I am very sorry.

As Cardinal Burke said when asked what to do if the Synod against the Family did the worst, "Stay faithful."

I need some clarity about what that practically means.  I need a little break. 

I'm not quitting, because the Synod might require a public stand by Catholics, and I don't want to desert the field.  I might be back sooner, too.

But I need to pray and think.


Anonymous said...

A mark of a Christian heart is the desire to be in communion with as many people as possible, to have everyone in heaven with you without demanding that they become just like you to get there. Sadly, we tend to have the opposite attitude.
We think of ourselves as big-hearted and as loving like Jesus did, but our attitudes and actions belies this. Our own love, truth, and worship are unconsciously predicated on making ourselves right by making others wrong. Our unconscious mantra says: I can only be good if someone else is bad. I can only be right if someone else is wrong. My dogma can only be true if someone else’s is false. My religion can only be right if someone else’s is wrong. My Eucharist can only be valid if someone else’s is invalid. And I can only be in heaven if someone else is in hell.
We justify this attitude of separation and moral-religious superiority by appealing to various things: correct dogma, the need for justice, proper morality, right ecclesiology, and correct liturgical practice. There’s some truth in this. To have your heaven include everyone does not mean that truth, morality, and church practice all become relative, that it’s of no ultimate consequence what one believes or how one acts and worships. Our Christian scriptures and subsequent tradition warn clearly that there are certain rights and wrongs and that certain attitudes and actions can exclude us from the God’s Kingdom. But those same scriptures make it equally clear that God’s salvific will is universal and that God’s deep, constant, passionate longing is that everyone, absolutely everyone, regardless of their attitude and actions, be somehow brought into the house. God, it seems, does not want to rest until everyone is home, eating at the same table.
Jesus, uncompromisingly, teaches the same thing. E.g., in Luke 15, 3 stories make this point: The shepherd who leaves the 99 sheep in order to search for the 1 stray; the woman who loses 1 of her 10 coins, and cannot rest until she finds it; & the father who loses 2 sons, 1 to weakness and 1 to anger, and will not rest until he has both back home.
There is much clarity in the story of the woman: She has 10 coins, loses 1, frantically searches for it and when she finds it, is overjoyed, calls in her neighbors, and has a celebration that costs more than what the coin itself was worth. Why her frantic pursuit? Why such great joy in finding it?
What’s at issue is not the value of the coin but the loss of wholeness: For a Hebrew, 10 was a number of wholeness, 9 was not. Let’s recast this with a woman who is the mother of 10 children. 9 come to visit her regularly and share their lives with her, but 1 is alienated and refuses to come home or talk to her. The woman tries everything imaginable to reconcile with her daughter and eventually she comes round. They reconcile. The mother is overjoyed, phones her friends, and throws a party: her family is whole again!
The same for the shepherd who leaves the 99 sheep to search for the lost one. For a Hebrew, 99 did not designate wholeness, but 100 did. The shepherd is like the mother with the alienated daughter, he cannot rest until his family is once again made whole. It's the same longing, passion, and sadness in the Father of the prodigal son and older brother. He cannot rest, nor be at peace, until both his sons are back in the house. He is overjoyed when his wayward son returns ... his heaven includes both his sons.
Our heaven too must be a wide one. Like the woman who lost a coin, like the shepherd who has lost a sheep, and like the father of the prodigal son and older brother, we too shouldn’t rest easy when others are separated from us. The family is only happy when everyone is home.
What ultimately characterizes a genuine faith and a big heart is not how pure our churches, doctrines, and morals might be, but how wide is the embrace of our hearts.

D to the Lena said...

For the sake of your blood pressure, I support this decision. ;-)

Glad to see you're still alive, Timmy.

Karen said...

Timman, I don't think you are leading anyone astray. As I see it, you post as you see it, which as far as I can see is truly how things are. I hope that makes sense. When most of the traditional laity are seeing and posting the same things, aren't we a true voice? Aren't things that have been declared dogma also things that the laity have seen to be true for a long time? When you measure the actions of this pope against the millenia of Church teaching, it is obvious that HE is the one leading us astray! We all need to be on our knees for many reasons. Thank you for what you do.

thetimman said...

Anonymous, please leave a name next time if you wish your comment published.

Secondly, your description of my position or that of any traditional Catholic in my personal acquaintance is a caricature. It is not my approach to faith or sacraments. Salvation is not a zero sum game. St. Paul says we are to work out our salvation in fear and trembling, and that is what I am trying to do. I don't look down on anyone.

The same God Who loves all and desires all to be saved created us with free will and respects that free will. No one will be saved against their will.

"If you love Me, keep My commandments." That means something. Confirming people in sin so you can feel good about your own inclusiveness is selfishness. It is hellishly so, as it leads your fellow man to hell.

Those who reject the Bride of Christ reject the Bridegroom. If you love them, or if God forbid you are among them, the Gospel message is to stop.

St. Corbinian's Bear said...

I don't know if you have read the Bear's manifesto or not, but he has come to the very same conclusion. God forbid he should be the one to push one person out of the Church. His blog has consequently changed to try to keep things in perspective, rather than racking up page views by snarking on everyone's favorite targets. It's a lot more work. The Bear doesn't think people like it. He lost about half his readership. Oh well.

Denise said...

Regarding the comment about he name of this blog, it might be good to provide a reminder of who Saint Louis actually was. He was a king of France, who was known for his piety, sanctity, and love of the poor. However...he also collaborated with the Papal Inquisition which worked to enforce religious orthodoxy throughout his realm. St. Louis was no peace and luv hippie.

Saint Louis was a true man, as opposed to effeminate men nowadays who just believe in loving and supporting the Pope, as though this is the most important thing that a Catholic can ever do. But the saints of old knew better.

By all means, Timman, take a break. There will be other venues that will provide insight until you to decide to return. God bless!


TLMer said...

All, it is with a sad heart that I write this. I just read the past couple of postings here, along with the referenced publication links, as well as the response comments, and I felt compelled to speak out.
I have followed this blog for a number of years, and though I frequently find perspectives that enrich my own, there are times when I shake my head in bewilderment over what seem to be extreme views on the Faith. This is true of other sites as well, but most recently this one in particular.
I am a convert, by the grace of God, and likewise a tradvert. Perhaps it is because of my protestant past and education, or perhaps it is because of incomplete catechesis. Maybe it is because my concerns are correct. I don't know. I have, however, noticed a marked severity in opnions expressed in this blog against the Pope, and against much of our Church, all in the name of doctrinal and traditional accuracy and fidelity. It smacks of Fundamentalism to me, like my early life in Baptist circles where people would adamantly and even angrily state Bible alone, King James alone, etc.
I did mot leave those lands to settle here, in the Holy Land of Zion, to only be faced with such narrow dogmaticism again by those who proclaim it is not right to trust the very Church I joined in an embrace of love and trust. For I do not consider it right or holy to sit in judgment on our Church, her Bishops, our Pope. I believe such vehemence to be a rehashed version of the 95 Theses all over again, and I am truly saddened and disheartened by this.
Just because The Remnant, which I even subscribed to for a while in my tradversion, or any other so-called Traditionalist publication or self-proclaimed authority states opinions on private revelations, Church documents, or Papal speeches does not mean these opinions are any less misguided, in error, or divisive as Herr Luther's were and still are to this day. I for one am weary of the vitriolic nit-picking, the insinuative, disrespectful, and corrosive grumbling, and the open denigration of the leaders of my beloved Church, as expressed in a number of blog and publication sites. I love the Traditional Latin Mass, our Church, and her teachings, history, and traditions, and it pains me that I cannot perceive these clearly over all the self-proclaimed outrage and indignancy being expresssed so often.
These neither encourage me in this Walk, enrich my faith or understanding of Holy Mother's teachings, nor lift my spirit to higher, more noble thoughts and ideas. No, it is to me more and more of the same old post-Modern negativity and anti-authority, existentialist statements I put up with in my protestant life. I don't understand why so many in our traditionalist field keep attacking the Pope and our Bishops and Priests in so bitter, biting, and shrill a manner.
I wish it would stop. I wish the Ark would be a place of mutual encouragemnt, of joy, of peace.
Why can't it be that way?
Could this blog, and other traditionalist sites, be used instead to express more informative, encouraging, and challenging ideas that expose what is positive and praiseworthy, and describe what our leaders are saying and doing in an uplifting and noble light? And not just a big honkin' gripe/whine/crab session?
Or is this too much to expect in Zion?
I write this with sincerity, humility, and respect, though I may catch heck for saying these things.
My name is JP, but I post as TLMer here.

Anonymous said...

The anonymous script was from a priest, Fr. Ron Rolheiser. It was a bit longer, so I had to delete a few phrases here and there.
Maybe you are a prophet sounding the alarm in the wilderness. Maybe...
Yet the hardest hardliners in any religion end up saying that their way is the only way. They alone have the truth. They alone are the pure. They alone will be saved.
We condemn Muslim Jihadists for this. The phrase that people are "drinking the KoolAid" refers to a religious sect that only saw doom and gloom outside their very small community - and committed mass suicide rather than engage in society.
Hitler also 'knew the truth' and tried to "purify" his country by eliminating all those who weren't pure. History is strewn with people who fight windmills. Such a coincidence that the basis of their fundamentalism mirrors EXACTLY their own life and religious practices. No need for growth because they have 'the truth.'
We call that narcissism.
Is your faith leading you to love others? Is it encouraging you to be more compassionate, forgiving, accepting, and merciful, traits Jesus Himself showed the most in His Life?
Again, I am troubled that Jesus saved his harshest criticism for those of his time who also 'knew the truth' - the Pharisees and Sadducees.
Humbled again and again.

thetimman said...

Thanks, very uplifting.

Denise said...

If our faith leads us to love others, as it should, then shouldn't we also be concerned about upholding the Truths of the Catholic Faith? Does the Catholic Faith teach that love is the only thing that's important? What about God's Justice? Do you believe, Anonymous, that there is such a thing as God's Justice, and what does it look like to you? Was St. John the Baptist wrong to speak out against sin?

I personally don't pay attention everything that Pope Francis says or writes, because it's so bewildering. I love him, but I don't like him. Has he presented a danger to the Catholic Faith? Yes, but it can be very difficult to write about the danger while keeping in mind that we should love him, too. If Timman has difficulty writing with love, but also with truth, then perhaps it's better to not write about the danger. The Remnant folks, for instance, are getting a little better about not be so immature lately, which is a good thing.

How do we reconcile our love for the Pope and the Papacy in these terrible days of Crisis, when the Pope does not uphold the Catholic Faith as he should? Do we just ignore it, which means that we just focus on peace and luv, because it's just too unpleasant to admit to ourselves that there's a problem? This is a sign of weakness, that we cover our eyes and ears and refuse to see the Crisis. But we have to be careful to not go in the other opposite direction, too. I blame it on the Crisis. The Crisis is not Timman's fault. We need to find a proper balance, which is difficult.


Long-Skirts said...


For neurotic-psychotic
“Attached” to the old,
We give you a hireling
To take care your fold.

No need for the shepherds,
Who seem so much keener,
They’ll tempt you with dreams
Of pastures much greener

And say not to mimic
Past, tolerant-barters,
So heads were cut off,
Who could dialogue with martyrs?

The shepherds tell fables,
‘Bout a man, hated, hailed,
Like you, just “attached”,
Don’t believe He was nailed!

Jane Chantal said...

What Denise said.

The voices of moderation that are urging, well, moderation, certainly have a point -- we all should try to look after our spiritual health or we will be of little use to ourselves or anybody else, especially our loved ones. Let us not forget, however, that we are having this discussion not because of one another, but because a situation has been allowed to develop that is causing some faithful Catholics to fear that the gates of Hell are, in fact, prevailing against the Church. That is an unspeakable nightmare that no blogger has the power to unleash.

Perhaps many of us will, for our sanity's sake, have to avert our eyes from the things that have been distressing us, and focus on the things over which we still feel we have some control. Perhaps we will have to "let go and let God". But the necessity to do so will most certainly not have been the fault of any blog post or comment thereon.

Long-Skirts said...

"All the science of the Saints is included in these two things: To do, and to suffer. And whoever had done these two things best, has made himself most saintly."
--Saint Francis de Sales

No blogger is going to make an informed Catholic leave the Church. Of course moderation and balance, always, and with joy as a Catholic, but it is our duty to "Do" in our suffering as St. Francis de Sales said. It's not the Church but the flawed men in the Church, today, we have just anger towards but still pray for too.

The man who rapes your mother is ALWAYS laughing, he's getting what he wants... his "jollies" so to speak and as long as her children don't fight for her he's uproariously happy!

Yes, we MUST speak AND build up the Body of Christ but not by being "nice". I work in a truly Catholic school where ONLY the True Faith is taught, Mass said, Confessions heard and sacrifice made by parents of small & large struggling families, preserving the whole Faith and continuing a Catholic culture for now and the future ... today I had to plunge two poop filled toilets because we don't have the money for a janitor, but by God no one had more joy in their hearts than I knowing this is for the Greater Glory of God and our holy Mother Church and all Catholic souls. The Catholic school exists now and will be there for you in the future as Christ never leaves us orphans ... so we must fight the good fight, "know your enemies", because there are many, unfortunately, and preserve the whole Faith and hopefully in the Catholic future there will be Catholic janitors to help "clean up the sh*t"!