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Yesterday I came across a most interesting post in the National Schismatic Reporter, a.k.a the Fishwrap as per Fr. Z. The title was Pope Francis has history, but not time, on his side in reform push. I will not however, provide the link since it is not worth the click.
Come to think of it, the reason why I will not provide a link is that I don’t want to reinforce the mistaken notion that the Fishwrap is still relevant to the times, or as the Germans would say “zeitgemäß”, which can mean “modern,” “suitable,” or even “appropriate,” and often carries all of these shades when applied to the Church. (quote from The Radical Catholic blog – see here). And speaking of being relevant to the times, I wonder if the “effect” that the “Bergoglian remnant hippie church” is aiming for is the same effect that the protestants achieved, as described in the Radical Catholic article in the above link? But I digress…
Anyways, the reason that I am mentioning the Fishwrap article is due to a certain observation made by one Fr. Antonio Spadaro, S.J. Now we all remember Fr. Spadaro from the Secret Sex Synod of 2014, (see here) but more about this in an upcoming post. For now, the one quote that caught my eye is the following:
The intensity of the opposition raises a basic question at Francis’ two-year mark: Can his reform campaign outlast his papacy?
Unlike the resistance to reforms within the church’s Roman bureaucracy, the backlash on anything touching doctrine is wider, deeper and more visceral because it cuts to the marrow of Catholicism. Indeed, the criticisms are so sharp that the Fr. Antonio Spadaro, an Italian Jesuit who is close to Francis, said he views the “anguish” of the pope’s foes “as more of a psychological problem” than a question of doctrine.
Reading the above, it occurred to me that I heard this “psychological problems” explanation used in other circumstances and by other clerics. Now where have I heard this? Oh, I remember now. Here is the quote from Rorate Caeli: (see here)
By specifically naming the (“Reform of the Reform”?) “liturgies” celebrated by “traditionalist” seminarians, once ordained, as the manifestation of their “moral and psychological” “imbalances”, it is clear that the Pope’s target is the traditional-friendly views on the sacred liturgy of many young priests and seminarians.
Why yes, “psychological imbalances” manifest themselves in “traditional seminarians” is how the bishop of Rome, Francis recently explained why he had to remove some bishops from their Sees, bishops who had full seminaries.
OK, I am beginning to see a pattern here. So where else have we heard the of “psychological imbalances” diagnoses?
Oh, now I remember. There was a book written by two chaps from Argentina. Here are the relevant excerpts from the Eponymous Flower blog: (see here)
Then there was a radical break. In 1990 Bergoglio was relieved of all offices and duties and transferred 700 km away from Buenos Aires to Cordoba. There he was for two years in a room in the religious establishment, but given “no task”. He was not routinely called upon to celebrate Mass in the church of the Order, but for Penance.
Oh my. So why was this brilliant bishop relieved of all offices and duties and transferred 700 km away from Buenos Aires to Cordoba? Here is the answer that our two Bergoglio friendly authors provide:
The authors tell an anecdote of Father Ángel Rossi, a spiritual son of Bergoglio, who describes how much the current Pope had suffered: “The Order had related parties, who were responsible for the spread of rumors, which came from Jesuit sources, that the man who was Provincial of the Order, who was so young and so brilliant, had retired to Cordoba, because he was sick because he was crazy. When my mother died, a layman who was very close to the religious establishment, approached me and pointed to Bergoglio, who knelt at the coffin and prayed! Pity he is crazy ‘ I looked at him and said: ‘If this man is crazy, what am I?'”
Hmmmm……. Well, if that is not irrefutable proof of the sanity of Francis, I just don’t know what is. By the way, Fr. Rossi, are you a trained psychiatrist, and is this a clinical assessment that you are putting forward? But I digress…
I on the other hand, am not a medical professional nor do I pretend to be, but only write the above as a humble blogger, and I will be the first to admit that I do not know who the crazy party is and who the crazy party is not.
But since Fr. Rossi took a stab, I too have run across psychological tests where a patient is shown pictures and asked to associate words with images. So therefore, I propose the following “pseudo psychological” word-image association test.
Here is the first two pictures. Please identify who the “crazy” people are.
Now for a hard one.
3) 4) Yes, dear reader. This is a trick question. And the reason that it is a trick question is that you can’t be “crazy” if you are missing in action. Or to put it another way, before you can “be crazy”, you have to “be”! Yes dear reader, that last sentence is as “deep” as it is “unsettling”.
Come to think of it, the last two pictures might be very telling. I think I see the
strategy Lord’s pastoral call that Francis and Fr. Spadaro are putting in place and that is this:
If you drive all the Faithful from the Catholic Church, you will not have any “psychological problems” to deal with.
As Oscar Levant once quipped: there is a fine line between genius and insanity.
But just one closing observation. If you drive all the Faithful from the Church, who will pay the bills?
The above post might also answer the question posed by Father Ángel Rossi, a spiritual son of Bergoglio, to the layman while looking at Bergoglio praying at the coffin, namely:
When my mother died, a layman who was very close to the religious establishment, approached me and pointed to Bergoglio, who knelt at the coffin and prayed! Pity he is crazy ‘ I looked at him and said: ‘If this man is crazy, what am I?'”
I will let you dear reader make this call.
But it is a “Fine Line” indeed!