It’s hard to imagine a better time for a perceived pinko pope to be at the seat of St. Peter. In the American micro view that seems to not have the ability to see beyond the rocking chair on the porch, overlooking the lawn that possesses the blade of grass they’d draw or give blood defending, it’s not shocking to hear grumblings of returning to the pre-Vatican II days of a Latin Mass, or the good ol’ days as some like to remember.
The Latin Mass is the battle cry and the exhaustive wedge issue of traditional Catholics. It’s what the curmudgeon next to you in the pew wants to bend your ear about before he grumbles under his breath to his car to get back to defend his lawn. It’s old – it’s tired – it’s like Rick Santorum’s mission to designate English as the official language of America. It’s tired, dude – a bad look.
The issue is that traditionalist’s aren’t the problem. Actually, there’s little wrong with wanting to hear a Latin Mass. These are not the people perched atop their soap box. No, that is reserved for the radical traditionalists. These folks, who are not slight in numbers, have a vitriol for the Second Vatican Council quite in the same vein as Bill Belichick’s taste for post-game interviews. They genuinely believe Francis is the most liberal pope in history – more so than Pope John XXIII – and that guy put together a commission to study contraception… in 1963. It’s true, though, some have gone as far as suggest he’s the anti-pope. Now, I know what you’re saying – we all have that crazy family member who insists that “In Plane Sight” is proof that 9/11 was an inside job or that George W. Bush used a rocket launcher to take the buildings down and made a hologram of two planes as the greatest ruse in history. These folks are easy to discount, but there is a contingent of people with clout who steam their train.
Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke who has long been at odds with Francis, is one of the leaders. Burke is more a Benedict guy – a man who has some flare for the flair while advocating for a church that had long since closed its doors. Burke has an aggressive and unwelcoming stance to homosexuality and towards women. He advocates for the family to stay away from gay family members, as they are intrinsically evil. For women, Burke has suggested that allowing altar girls is stunting the boys who would otherwise man these posts and transition to seminary. Burke concludes that this is the force majeure of radical feminism in the Catholic Church.
It’s behavior and thinking that is only solved by attrition through natural causes, I believe.
Peace be with you.
on Twitter @ryandavidprice