Wherein Fr. Z responds cordially to The Remnant’s polite response – #UniteTheClans

I opened my snail-mailbox and found my copy of The Remnantfreshly arrived.

In this offering (31 January 2020… late?) you find their coverage of the event in Munich, the Acies Ordinata, in protest against Card. Marx and the antics of the Germans.   I wrote about it  HERE.

At the time I was critical not so much of the fact of the protest and presser, but the fact that it was organized by invitation only and it had a secretive aspect to it.  Post factum, the organizers said that they were worried that it would be shut down or that counter-protesters would show up.

In any event, my post did not go unnoticed by Michael Matt, whom I respect and like.  He mentioned my reaction in his piece’s 2nd paragraph:

I am perfectly okay with Michael reacting in this way to my own reaction.

I also appreciate that he wrote without rancor.

Much of what I see from the trad side of things is, when they disagree, redolent of self-absorbed adolescents.

Moreover, I am still on board with his Michael’s call to “Unite The Clans”… if he is.  Is he?  I hope so.

We have to be able to talk civilly to each other, even to disagree.  In the end we have to close ranks, giving up smaller perspectives for the sake of a much larger view of an increasingly dark horizon.

I still think that the Acies Ordinata event in Munich, though perhaps good in motives, was not done well on the level of tactics.  We shall see what they choose to do in the future.  It’s over now, and we turn to the future.

What is without question is that the antics of the Germans threatens the whole of the Church.   Not even Francis can rein them in.  They have huge power through their monetary clout and they aren’t going to be guided by anyone.  In the Illustrated Ecclesiastical Dictionary, next to the entry for “loose cannon” find a photo of the German Bishops.

BTW… a loose cannon is dangerous because, as it runs free on a deck, it can plunge down a hatch and crash through the hull of the ship, or crush people in its path as it rolls around.    That’s Germany.  Peter’s Barque is full of loose cannons and we are all endangered by them.  Sailors did all that they could to “trip” a loose cannon over onto its side.

So, the bottom line is that, I appreciate Michael Matt and his call to #UniteTheClans.  Some have written to me by email and called me “naive” for that … and called me a lot worse than naive.  I also appreciate that, though we disagreed on Munich, Michael remains civil and the gentleman I have for years known him to be.

I’d rather be naive and hopeful, than bitter and divided into easily picked off weakened, inconsequential cliques.  I’d rather be optimistic and trying to create a stronger and united coalition than remain like Japaneses soldiers on far flung islands who didn’t get the memo.

In token of which, here is the subscription page to The RemnantHERE

Please share!

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in "How To..." - Practical Notes, Be The Maquis, Our Catholic Identity, The future and our choices and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Wherein Fr. Z responds cordially to The Remnant’s polite response – #UniteTheClans

  1. Shortly before he left for Munich, Michael Matt’s son had a serious medical issue that required an amputation. He wrote about it on the Remnant website and on Twitter, here:


    I hope we can all pray for Walter and the entire Matt family. I’m sure we can excuse the January issue being late, as I gather it is very much a family business.

  2. HvonBlumenthal says:

    Unfortunately too many cathedrals have loose canons too.

  3. TonyO says:

    Some have written to me by email and called me “naive” for that … and called me a lot worse than naive.

    I would jump on the bandwagon, and call Fr. Z a lot worse than naive. Here’s what I would call him: intelligent, informed, zealous for souls, hoping in Christ…

    There, take THAT, you unreconstructed ossified manualist! :-))

  4. Kathleen10 says:

    I’m embarrassed for Trad-dom. Whatever has taken hold of the Trad-blog world, it’s a slow moving train wreck. The social media world in general has become so toxic it is really becoming depressing, we act just like the rest of the world, the insults, the slander, the snark! There are some who are provoking arguments and just insulting people wholesale, and then there is the response, and it all deteriorates into constant caterwauling and dramas. When one thinks of how this must delight the enemy, the enemies, it’s discouraging. The faithful don’t need it, we’ve got enough trying to deal with everything else. An argument about the faith by defending truth is one thing, we have to argue and defend, that’s good, but the personal attacks and division. I’m not on Twitter but I just saw some lady tweeted a negative opinion about some Trads, and they responded! If all it takes is one chick with a Twitter account to throw a wrench into the works, you’re going to be in a constant state of upset, because there are a million fools out here with an opinion. We’ve grown way too critical. The appropriate targets of our righteous wrath can’t be reached, and we’re lashing out sideways. It’s not effective and not a good look, and it’s not helping.

  5. Hidden One says:

    I look forward to Mr. Matt’s response to this post.

  6. Imrahil says:

    So, there is a new article on Acies ordinata… which might allow me to write a comment on the event, because I did read our reverend host’s article about it, but did not then have the time to do so.

    In fact, I found the somewhat critical attitude by our reverend host rather refreshing. Here are some points.

    1. I am a human being, so the fact that I wasn’t invited is at least not the very best guarantee to make me feel positive about such a protest. Apparently, with the one or the other exception neither was anyone else.

    Munich has a rather lively traditionalist scene both north and south of the Altstadtring (by which I mean, from the locations of their respective chapels, FSSP and SSPX). In addition, it has a rather lively orthodox Catholic scene not affiliated to either form of the Roman Rite in a specific way (to say “Novus Ordo” would be unprecise, because so many of them have started to show up at the FSSP). So has Germany. They, that is to say we, have no less complaint about the Instutitional-Church-as-she-is (I am trying to translate the handy word Amtskirche) than an Italian professor might, only we have to suffer that more, because to my knowledge the Church in Italy and for that matter the USA is still in better shape.

    But with the one or the other exception, there was hardly any well-known face in the videos that have since been published. You might get the idea that they are protesting not so much against the German Amtskirche but actually against the German Church; and being a patriot I cannot quite like that.

    2. On the other hand, that I was not invited at least spared me from having to decide whether I like their actual agenda. It goes without saying that the Acies ordinata and I are from the same party, so to speak; but their actual agenda?

    While they did protest against Cardinal Marx, the Synodal Way, (probably) the Amazonian synod and so forth, and in the main quite rightly, that does not seem to have been their main point.

    Their main point, their real beef (I’m not quite sure whether that slang expression is decent, so forgive a foreigner) was not with heterodox or heterodoxy-fostering German bishops at all. Their real beef was with German orthodox Catholics – those, that is, who (as they would put it: “continue to”) pay the Church tax. (Like me, of course.)

    Which clearly betrays a lack of knowledge about the situation. The Church tax is automatic, unless you sign and stamp the statement that you are not a Roman Catholic any-more. Can a Catholic do this? No. – Imagine a robber who says “give me your money, or I will kill you”. You give him your money; and if he goes to a whorehouse that is not your fault. In fact, if you give your money to the state as a tax and he funds all sort of sinful and anti-faith things with it, that is not your fault. (Of course, in the case of the robber, you also might make a fight about it, especially if you have good chances or no family that would miss you; and then perhaps lose your life heroically; but that is because it is only the life of the body that is at stake here.)

    3. I see their concern about possible counter-demonstrations and I think they were serious about it; but perhaps they were a bit over-anxious. Of course, you will find among the German left people to demonstrate against the Faith in general, or in pro-life actions and so forth. But the specific battle between the Synodal-Way-promoters and orthodox Catholics is of less interest to the secular mainstream and left public that the Synodal Way would wish for. I don’t really think they would see it worth while to support, as it appears to them, one faction of the Catholic Church against the other. And if they would (I’m speaking now of the kind of people that attends demonstrations), I’m not so sure what they would choose: the philistine, boring, decent-secular-citizen “Synodal Way” who so desperately want to be loved by the unbelievers, or those who are at least rebels and do at least in their belief look like the Catholics you may know from stories? I’m not sure either way, but it’s not with certainty the first. (Of course, those sort of leftist demonstrator beliefs that, watered-down or not, Catholicism were a thing of the past anyway.)

    4. (Minor issue) For a movement that is certainly described as rightist, and which if that is not taken as a slur but as a meaningful description of a political position and the right one (copyright for the pun goes to Kuehnelt-Leddihn) at that might actually be rightist, protesting in front of St. Cajetan’s Church is a rather bad idea. If it’s secret anyway, so the need of notifying authorities beforehand is removed, why not take St. Mary’s Place, with the statue of the Blessed Virgin looking down on the protesters? Or in front of St. Michael’s Church? St. Michael’s is the Jesuit Church, St. Cajetan is the Dominicans’ Church. I don’t think they would make a point of protesting against the Dominicans and not against the Jesuits; if anything, the other way round. – Or in front of the Cathedral?

    So why take, of all places in Munich, the place that is rather firmly associated in people’s minds with the Hitler Putsch of 1923?

Think, proof read, preview BEFORE posting!