Sunday, March 2, 2014

Why Does CMTV Urge Us To Blindfold And Gag Ourselves?

First, as you read the following, I ask that you keep the post from Friday in mind.

Last week ChurchMilitantTV (fronted by Michael Voris) replied to some alleged criticisms from other well-respected Catholics.  The latter allegedly criticized Voris for not taking public issue with Pope Francis for missteps and blunders during this first year of his papacy.  The other leaders are Chris Ferrara and John Vennari.  I say their criticisms of Voris are alleged because the Church Militant article linked to no source for them.

Louie Verrecchio, on behalf of Vennari and Ferrara, issued a rebuttal to Voris in the form of a spoof of the Vortex episodes.  I respect Michael Voris highly, and as regular readers know I post almost all the Vortexes in this blog.  However I must concur with Verrecchio on this occasion.  I post the two documents now, urging study of both of them:
To be honest, I think the CMTV statement is so full of logical flaws as to be rather nonsensical.  I'll point out some of them, and I won't necessarily go in order of the document flow.

I read the articles that it cites.  While they do take exception with objectively questionable things that were done and said by the Holy Father, nowhere do I perceive personal attacks on the Holy Father or his papacy per se.  I wish to point out that "voiced disagreements with the merits of Pope Francis' actions" and "attacks on the pope" are NOT equivalent.  I take a dim view of the obfuscation of that difference.

The author of that CMTV piece (and it may not be Voris!) goes on to say that "it is our judgment that most Catholics should not read these articles".  I beg his pardon, but who does he think he is?  He's entitled to his opinion of these pieces - so let others form their own.  Here are two of the pieces:
These, and a piece written by my friend at the Tenth Crusade (also touching on this exchange) begin to list our concerns with Pope Francis.  It bears mentioning again that no one is taking issue with any solemn pronouncements by His Holiness.  Regarding lower-level matters, though, we must raise alarms when we see them, for some will regard his actions as having the weight of solemn declarations.  I'd also like to call to mind my blog piece from Friday (to which I linked at the top of this piece).  In it is cited the example of St. Paul confronting St. Peter's erroneous behavior; Peter was the first Pope.

Moving on, we read this head-scratcher.  "Assume, for the sake of argument, that everything one learns from ecclesiastical porn sites and articles is true. Every claim, every allegation, is true. Bad news all around for the Church. Question: how are you a better Catholic for knowing all this, and what is the proper Catholic response?"  First, I take exception to CMTV describing Ferarra's and Venneri's works as "ecclesiastical porn".  Now let's reply to the questions.  First, we are better Catholics for knowing the complete "lay of the land".  We know precisely for what we should pray and we contemplate what action would be advantageous to correct poor situations.  Second, the proper Catholic response is never willful ignorance; that itself may constitute sin against prudence.

I'm going to take a "leap in evaluation" and try to glean the thrust of the following paragraphs of the CMTV tome in one sentence: "We know the Church is in crisis; the proper Catholic response is to focus solely on our personal holiness - nothing else."  If that is the case, CMTV is incorrect on this matter.

Here's another series of incredible sentences from the CMTV piece: "While we greatly admire and are the beneficiaries of the work of those on whose shoulders we stand in the work to help restore the Catholic Church to its authentic glory, we can neither support nor encourage their ongoing, unnecessary and harmful attacks on the Church and the Holy Father. Most Catholics are not even aware of the many disconcerting words and deeds of Pope Francis and his predecessors. Most Catholics have no idea that there were ecumenical events at Assisi or that Pope John Paul II kissed the Koran. Most Catholics, including most bishops and priests, don’t even know that there is a crisis in the Church today. They do know, however, that the Pope is the head of the Catholic Church and, presumably, the guardian and protector of Catholic orthodoxy. Who benefits from attacks on the Rock on whom Our Lord established His Church (Matt 16:18)?"

Unpacking this might require its own post, but I'll give it a try in this one post.  We'll do this "bullet-style".
  • At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I'll state once again that "voiced disagreements with the merits of Pope Francis' actions" and "attacks on the pope/church" are NOT equivalent.  CMTV, please stop the disingenuous blurring of that difference.
  • This paragraph couples the wide-spread ignorance of the crisis in the Church with knowing that the pope is head of the church.  It seems to be accepting, if not condoning, this ignorance.  However, that is a far cry from the message conveyed in a previous Vortex episode in which Voris completely denounced the mental oblivion of the Catholic in the pew regarding the real crisis.
  • Can another question be asked?  How about "who benefits from Catholics being kept in the dark regarding ills within the Vatican?"
This post could go on and on, but I'll close it now where the CMTV closes their's - with commentary on Genesis 9:18-27.  CMTV rightly praises the actions of Sem and Japheth.  Does it dawn on the CMTV author (I don't think it's Voris himself), that the two honorable sons would not have known their father needed their ministration had it not been for the tattling (call it "ecclesiastical porn") of their errant brother?  Cham's motives aside, he did alert his brothers to a dire situation, which they then addressed and corrected. Else, Noe might have died of exposure (drunkedness increases the risk of hypothermia).  Similarly, we need to sound the alarm over anomalies that we see in Church life, regardless of their source, so that appropriate actions can be taken.

Actually, there's another more fitting close.  I started this post by citing a Dominican Doctor of the Church - St Thomas Aquinas.  I'll close it with a quote from another Dominican Doctor of the Church - St Catherine of Siena: "We've had enough of exhortations to be silent! Cry out with a hundred thousand tongues. I see that the world is rotten because of silence!"

Our Church is rotten.  We must have the courage and holiness to confront the rot where it occurs.  This blog will remain part of that choir of "a hundred thousand tongues".  We need more, not less, such tongues.

1 comment:

  1. The piece posted on CMTV puzzles me. How does Michael apply these principles to his own work? LOL!

    Most people in the parish don't know about the scandals of Father or Bishop So and So. His entire apostolate is about exposing them.

    What works with the goose, works with the gander.

    I don't understand what the Remnant or the parties mentioned have to do with SSPX and other sedevacanists, do you?

    I do not read or follow these apostolates very much and what I've read seemed to be criticisms nobody following the misfeasance and malfeasance could disagree with!


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