New Signs of the Cross: A Critique of Channel
13's Series on the Catholic Church in Maine


  PART 2

 

The second installment of this series concerned itself with the exodus of Catholics from the Church, the highlight of which appeared to be those ex-members' new found interest in the Unitarian Church among others. The rationale proffered was two-fold: Too many "rules" and too much "structure," both which were stated like axioms without much definition, except for issues centering on homosexuality. The response from the Bishop, apart from a perfunctional statement that the Church cannot change moral doctrine was again one of haplessness. He literally shrugged his shoulders while uttering, "What is one to do." As far as we know, that except for one half-hearted Courage chapter with little active support, there is no action on the part of the diocese to assist homosexuals positively; for the most part they are abandoned to feckless pastors and to "gay rights" activists ever eager to indoctrinate these poor souls into the politics of "the lifestyle." Homosexuals are less than 2% of the Catholic population, so even if 100% of them left that would not account for most of the departures. Actually there are as many celibate, faithful homosexuals in the Church as there are those who either have left or stay on as agitators. I know because I know some of them. They are even more critical of "gay rights" and the Church's abandonment of them than I am.

It is quite curious why the station did not include all the Catholics who left because of the lack of structure: liturgical and catechetical.

I know of entire families who left, not to be unchurched or join the Unitarians where one need not believe in God to be a good Unitarian, but to become active, dedicated Baptists, Jehovah's Witnesses and the like, that is, they joined structured, "rule-laden" religious bodies.  A number have left to join schismatic "Catholic" groups. Some of the first group [non-schismatics] told me they were looking for answers they were entitled to but not given in the Church. The answers they found in their parishes were mainly false, because of priests who have lost their faith or never had it in the first place, and they sensed it, and being starved for the truth, they went looking for it in all the wrong places, but understandably so, given human nature. They found answers elsewhere, which are as error-filled, however, but with a veneer of orthodoxy, so they grabbed for it. When some discover the mistake they made in their desperation, pride sometimes prevents them from returning, along with a lack of authentic evangelicalism in the Church too open to modernism and the spirit of the world to effectively challenge them as real Catholics and provide an inducement for returning. Better a false religion that at least makes demands and teaches that it is the only way according to them, not just one among many, perhaps better, but not absolutely necessary for salvation, which is preached today in most parishes in so many words, from the funeral Masses that have the departed already in Heaven, to sermon exchanges during certain times of the year between ministers of other religions and the parish priests, which sends the loud message that the Church is not necessary for salvation; not to mention that this violates all previous formal Pontifical teaching up to and including Pius XII. The current informal teaching lends itself to false ideas on salvation, although it has never formally demanded one believe in ecumenism as a dogma in order to be a Catholic in good-standing. Even older Catholics who should know better are too easily induced through years of poor catechesis to think that all religions are pretty much acceptable for salvation. Of course, Channel 13 never brought any of these facts into the light.

Divorce and remarriage is also a big factor, although one wonders why, with all the annulments and the so-called "internal forums" in some parishes where an annulment isn't even pursued because the couple decides in their conscience that they can remarry and still rceive the Sacraments. Perhaps it is a good sign actually that Catholics stop practicing their faith when they "remarry" illicitly: they are not exposed to the fraudulent Novus ordo and its sulfurous poison and this may signal to us that these individual couples are too honest to pretend or seek a phony annulment. God can work a miracle with them because they are not lukewarm, and who may be open to His grace because they are at least humble enough to know they are living in sin. Of course the answer is not to leave the Church, because we are all sinners, but at least they are trying to not be hypocrites, even though they have a mistaken idea of real hypocrisy.

The final segment dealt with the decline of religious, specifically, the Sisters of Mercy, with the Mother House in Portland. At the time that the series ran there was only one postulant. While the nuns interviewed were generally positive about their vocation, the main thrust was economics, not the spiritual discord that has so damaged the Order membership in Maine, which was once the mainstay of parish schools. No mention  of the paganization and "feminzation" of the Order as a possible reason for some of the dwindling numbers of postulants. Although the nuns appeared in their modified habits, this was disingenuous, for, except for a few older nuns, the laity are used to seeing the Sisters of Mercy in civies, altogether masculine, without the charm of the traditional habit. When the Sisters of Mercy got out of the habit of wearing their habits, the revolution was symbolic of much more than a modernization of attire. These nuns have been particularly susceptible, along with the St. Joseph nuns, to the Matthew Fox school of pyscho-environmentalism; there is an evident loss of faith in the Order. These nuns are given to occult practices, such as the Enneagram, which they promote as a "spirituality." [The Chancery does so also in one of its glossy brochures.]

In fact, there were so many germane facts left out of this segment that it was a phony report. The major story of the past few years was so scandalous in the Portland area, it is impossible for the TV reporters, based in that city, to not have known of it, and which story so typifies what has happened to the Order and why it will continue to lose members: The schism that rent the Order in two. Twelve orthodox nuns had to leave due to the pressure of the rest of the Order which voted to go the way of the Women's Ordination Conference and the Leadership Conference of Women Religious; the twelve have taken up residence elsewhere, and to his credit, the Bishop says Mass there for them monthly. This is the face of the new "inclusive, tolerant American Church." So intolerant and exclusionary.

As one fifteen-year-old girl, whom I broached the subject of a religious vocation with, told me: "Why would I want to be a nun, they are mannish looking social workers. If I were a social worker I could do better than this." The young ladies have caught on that our religious orders as now constituted are not for young ladies with any sense of Tradition.

Again, in those orders where Tradition, symbolized by the full habit, is preserved and fostered, vocations are on the increase. Also largely unspoken by the laity who do not have their heads in the sand, out of basic decency I am sure, is the obvious trend to lesbianism-activism in some of the Orders here in Maine. This is such a scandal, it is no wonder that girls with any sense of modesty and chastity are wary of entering an Order. There is so little that is still attractive. But just fasten your sight upon a traditional nun and that same mystique and awe wells up. In the Sisters of Mercy there are the singular "Teresas," but they have no influence in the bureaucratic caste system. These nuns are the untouchables. When I travel to other locales where there are traditional Orders that have been established I see many postulants, all young and very feminine and exceptionally pretty, and these Orders are flourishing, such as the Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary in Still River, Massachusetts.

So this is why we Catholics must be and remain distrustful of the various secular media. Knowing first-hand how they botch or deliberately slant [same results] their so-called investigative reports, as in this case, we naturally suspect them in all other cases. In the age of information, so much disinformation. There was more truth-telling when all we had for the secular media was an isolated hand operated printing press and drums along the Mohawk River. Better the honest smoke signal than the sophisticated graphics of the benighted Channel 13, which at best is blowing smoke that fogs the issues of the day. This is the story behind every story it purports to tell. I no longer believe any affiliate even when they report on medical facts, because the definition of a fact is an alien concept to them. Our voice and our plight will not be heard through them. They neither care nor comprehend that they do not care; they do not comprehend that they do not comprehend and I wonder if they would even care about this. Probably not. One affiliate, the NBC one, went so far as to deliberately fabricate a non-existent incident in order to slander traditional Catholics and when asked for a correction or apology, arrogantly, adamantly refused! The media and our Bishop are dancing a macabre, delicately balanced duet, he, trying to engage them as if they are not the enemy, they courting him as if he is the enemy to be lulled in moments of weakness, of which there is an endless supply. Watch this deadly tarantulan ballet at your own peril. Watch and weep.

On the national level, over the Easter weekend, various cable channels offered "religious fare," so bizarre and occasionally blasphemous, when presenting material about Catholicism that these reporters belong in jail, if only bigotry against the Church and irresponsibility were crimes. FOX News titled theirs, "Keeping the Faith," which was anything but, where the Church was concerned. The upshot of the Catholic segment was that American Catholics had the right to pick and choose their own moral doctrine, and this was "keeping the faith." The irrepressible Paula Zahn [then at FOX], clearly in the liberal camp, had a smug little smile that opened coyly like a poisonous flower bloom when the dissenter-reporter-representative of the American viewpoint said this to her. The look on her face was worth a thousand words and then some! I got the impression that Zahn thought all this cafeteria Catholicism was quite delicious. Believe it or not this presentation was the best of the fare. One of the learning channels had a documentary on Our Lady that was so blasphemous I began to weep and could not finish monitoring it, thus, I won't be able to do the piece I had planned. According to this so-called documentary, the Virgin Mary wasn't, and so forth. I can't think about it without crying and wanting to scream, how dare you!

But I will be here so a public record will be left somewhere and somehow for future Catholics who want to know about the last years of the Church in Maine as it lies dying of its own self-inflicted wounds. Even after Easter and during Christmastide, there is only Lent here, a constant Calvary, the slightly-muted but ever increasing sound of the tears of a Diocese, the weeping of women who have lost their children to paganism and other sects while the Bishop glad hands with these others, and heeds not the bleating pleas of his own lambs; the weeping of traditional Catholics who have no voice with the very Shepherd appointed to guard and guide them, while every revolutionary and anti-Catholic has a place at his table in one form or another, such as the Masons, from whom he gladly accepted a check, and the heretics and subversives within his Chancery who lie to Catholics who call for information, to all the pro-abort politicians he is willing to have his picture taken with and who have not been banned from Communion, while in most places little girls and little boys, whose parents want traditional Sacraments for their children are rebuffed and worse, made examples of ridicule or forced to endure a gauntlet designed to subvert as the "price of admission." As long as I see those tears spilling softly, a hushed torrent, trailing down their cheeks and hear the far-flung wails of incipient [but miraculously still-resisted] despair, I will be here writing on the web. The evil deed of treason and treachery will go neither unnamed nor unexposed ... I will remember and try to honor these abandoned, betrayed Catholics ...

 

BACKE-MAILNEXT

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