Get out your handkerchiefs: Fishwrap on the fading “Francis Moment”…..

Over at Fishwrap (aka National Schismatic Reporter), the editor is already starting to wring his hands.

The editorial is a bit mawkish, but you can forgive that.

Here is a sample:

Francis is the exclamation point on Vatican II
Thomas C. Fox

I already hear concerns that the reformist church of 76-year-old Pope Francis might not survive his pontificate. I hear talk that the anti-reformists who took back the Second Vatican Council will likely do it again once Francis is gone from the scene.
We ask: Will a church groomed by compassion and mercy, as Francis would have it, be the church of our future? [Or will it be the oppressive Church of Benedict and JP2 with their torture chambers and auto de fé?] Will our church be guided, as if with a compass, by the lives and needs of marginalized people? Can a pastoral Catholicism, embedded in the Beatitudes, be the Catholicism we offer the world?  [Good grief.  Get this man some tissues, for the love of God.]

Viewed solely as a moment in church history, the Francis moment might not last. Post-Vatican II history teaches us that entrenched forces have ways of enduring. In this view, Francis could be a passing fancy. [big *sigh*....] However, from the long view of history, the Francis pontificate could well be the exclamation point on Vatican II — change and reform is the default mode of operation, not a one-time activity.

[... more sloppy stuff here... up to the big peroration!... ]

So, again, is our church on an irreversible, ever-reforming path? Or will Francis fade like the council, a meteorite in the night sky? [duh duh DUUUUUHNNNN!] Francis is the first pontiff educated during the council. He is a product of the council. In this sense, he is the first post-conciliar pontiff. Further, he embraces the theology and spirit of the council with seemingly unbridled affection. [Keep tuned to this channel.  They're figuring out that their "spirit" and Francis' "spirit", might not be the same.] The Francis era is really a new phase in an unfolding church reform story, one, as Francis reminds us, that will be full of surprises. [And how, dear readers, is that different from any other modern pontificate?]

Not to kick a guy when he is down, but Pope Francis excommunicated the Australian, former-Father Greg Reynolds. HERE

Why did he excommunicate him?  For upholding two things that Fox’s Fishwrap promotes: homosexual lifestyle and the ordination of women.  (Not to mention Communion for quadrupeds.)

Get out your handkerchiefs.

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19 Responses to Get out your handkerchiefs: Fishwrap on the fading “Francis Moment”…..

  1. mamajen says:

    We’re supposed to use our hankies to wave farewell, right?

  2. Geoffrey says:

    “Francis is the first pontiff educated during the council. He is a product of the council.”

    Then surely His Holiness actually read the documents of Vatican II, unlike the powers-that-be at the “Fishwrap”!

  3. john_6_fan says:

    “We ask: Will a church groomed by compassion and mercy, as Francis would have it, be the church of our future? Will our church be guided, as if with a compass, by the lives and needs of marginalized people? Can a pastoral Catholicism, embedded in the Beatitudes, be the Catholicism we offer the world?”

    What does the Pope have to do with an individual’s response to Christ’s call for mercy and compassion? Did Benedict and John Paul somehow prevent people from performing the corporal works of mercy, where Francis has given them license to do so? It seems like some folks think of the Church like it is a government that we work through to get things done. As though we pay our tithes like taxes and expect the Vatican to redistribute the wealth for us so we can say “I took care of the poor! Yay!”

    Why are they waiting for what they perceive to be a like minded Pope? Go! Now! Be merciful!

  4. benedetta says:

    Funny how the Fishwrap hates the Church, hates the Catholics who compose the Church, yet still out of nowhere they select out the words Vatican II as “support” for their long long list of “reforms”. They want us to read “Vatican II” and “reformer” and “pope” and try to program us to think a la Pavlov “abortion good” and “Marxism now” and “more gay” and “vote Democrat” and Mass as “optional meal on Sunday with lots off Haugen.” Why don’t they just make a lis of their demands. I guess they picked up on that subliminal message craze in the 70s and just couldn’t let it go.

  5. Patrick-K says:

    benedetta- I’m not so sure they want you to actually read the texts of Vatican II. It’s always the “spirit,” not the actual documents. Because if you did that, you might find things like: “the use of the Latin language is to be preserved in the Latin rites” (Sacrosanctum Concilium 36.1); “The Church acknowledges Gregorian chant as specially suited to the Roman liturgy: therefore, other things being equal, it should be given pride of place in liturgical services” (Sacrosanctum Concilium 116); and “bishops speak in the name of Christ and the faithful are to accept their teaching and adhere to it with a religious assent” (Lumen Gentium 25). There is almost zero basis for anything the NCR supports in Vatican II — they are very much aligned with the “council of the media.”

  6. wmeyer says:

    In my own experience of these people, what has always impressed me most about the dissidents who find support for their pet beliefs in the documents of Vatican II is that they have found such support without ever actually reading any of the documents. Quite an accomplishment, really, and no doubt it is what keeps them so pure.

    They are, of course, the people of “feeling” rather than worship, and their faith is simply that despite their once and future actions, they will be welcomed into heaven.

    But perhaps I am merely jealous, since I know that my salvation is my own responsibility, and excuses just won’t get it done.

  7. iowapapist says:

    Auto de fe? Thanks for the coffee-out-the-nose experience Father. Those at the Fishwrap (with “Inquisitive” minds) would certainly count that remark as typical of “pre-Vatican II catholicism”.

  8. benedetta says:

    Patrick-K and wmeyer, well said. Yes, it’s a fraud and propaganda. “Vatican II” and “reform” means “our demands” and nothing more or different or even nuanced. Quite authoritarian and shrill and scolding.

    Also comical how Second Vatican’s universal call to holiness has been jettisoned by Fishwrap et al along with everything else of plain meaning and common sense from the Council, let alone continuity. Nor do these elitists care about the pastoral cares and will of the faithful. They want what they want and will not stop until the Church is destroyed. Nothing will satisfy.

    Whereas, the majority of Catholics are pleased that Pope Francis is interested in discussing mercy. Of course most were similarly pleased with the way in which JPII helped to bring divine mercy to bear more widely, as well as the way BXVI similarly led and articulated what it means to be merciful as a Christian.

    Unfortunate that Fishwrap and friends think and style themselves the only appreciators of mercy on the planet. How unmerciful of them.

  9. Robbie says:

    Sorry to be the somewhat contrary one, but I think Fishwrap’s concerns the anti-reformists will take back the Church once Francis is gone are overblown. That’s so long as Francis is Pope for a considerable length of time.

    Consider this. In a little less than eight years, Benedict appointed about half of the Cardinals. So if Francis is Pope for eight years, he’ll likely have half of the college wanting to promote his “humble” approach. Add to that I see nothing that would lead me to believe Francis will ever retire as Benedict did. So if he reigns for 15 years, his vision will all but dominate the next conclave.

    If Francis’ Cardinals dominate the next selection, is it really likely a Pius X or even a Benedict XVI will emerge? Can anyone envision Ranjith emerging as Pope from a group dominated by the Francis style? I doubt it. Now having said that, if Francis were Pope for just a short time, I suspect the conservative block would be far more organized and united behind a choice than they were in March 2013.

  10. Deacon Augustine says:

    Anybody who can raise a false dichotomy between justice and mercy must have a very hard time with the concept of God who possesses both attributes in infinite plenitude. If their notion of the “spirit of the Council” is something that embraces only mercy to the exclusion of justice then it is not of God and the fishwrap is not worthy of being taken seriously.

  11. VARoman says:

    “Auto de fé? What’s the auto de fé?

    It’s what you oughtn’ to do but you do anyway.”

  12. av8er says:

    @VARoman; You read my mind.

  13. mburn16 says:

    “Consider this. In a little less than eight years, Benedict appointed about half of the Cardinals. ”

    …and yet they elected Francis as his successor. Beyond that, we have to remember that Francis’ views and actions are significantly influenced by his Jesuit-ness. That will make it even harder for him to shape the church in his own image, even if he were so inclined.

    I agree with the OP, the most likely result of Francis’ papacy will be a considerable swing back towards traditionalism next time.

  14. Lin says:

    mburn16……… You took the words right out of my mouth! “and yet they elected Francis”. I knew absolutely nothing about him except that he was a Jesuit. And that proved to be enough!

  15. Johnno says:

    You guys are doing it all wrong. You do not ‘read’ the documents of Vatican II. That is an outdated medeival practice. You have to ‘feel’ the documents of Vatican II. Just like you ‘feel’ the Beatitudes and the rest of the Bible for that matter. Just as you would ‘feel’ the writings of Karl Marx, and ‘feel’ what Vladimir Lenin was really after: A Loving and Equal World Community!

    “change and reform is the default mode of operation, not a one-time activity.”

    Ah yes, the loving never-ending marxist revolution… Until everything is equal and same, there shall never be peace amongst the classes. And there are always more divisions to find and reform! Equality! Equality! We must all be as gods to reach universal equality!

  16. Margaret says:

    Will our church be guided, as if with a compass, by the lives and needs of marginalized people? Can a pastoral Catholicism, embedded in the Beatitudes, be the Catholicism we offer the world?

    Oh good grief, someone clearly couldn’t be bothered to read past the first two pages of BXVI’s Jesus of Nazareth. Talk about embedded in the Beatitudes…

  17. Is there any possibility that the article in question was written by Matthew Fox using the pseudonym Thomas C. Fox?

    Pax et bonum,
    Keith Töpfer

  18. If Raymond Cardinal Burke had been elected Pope (as I fervently hoped and wished he would be), would he have been “a product of the council,” the “first post-conciliar pontiff”?

  19. Discipulus Humilis says:

    How can an article, even one in the Fishwrap, be so badly written? Will its author please fade like a meteorite in the night sky? Will he please be guided, as though by a compass, to a more suitable profession?