Archives for posts with tag: cranmer

St. Matthias, positively male.

It’s amazing how the Catholic Church inspires Her enemies to put their two cents on how it should run. Didn’t the Devil, the greatest enemy of the Church, also tell Jesus how it should be done? My response to his increasingly fervent anti-Roman posts below, and yes, I’m aware I made a mistake of calling Barnabas the Apostle the original disciples added to the Twelve. St. Matthias, pray for us!

“Such a move would, overnight, confront the global mindset that the Roman Catholic Church denies equality and justice to women. By permitting women to serve as cardinals, the obsessions over male priesthood and episcopacy would be dispelled. This is not some superficial feminist revolution: it is Catholic theology incrementally adapting.”

It is a good thing, then, that the Roman Catholic Church does not care what the world thinks of it. In fact, in the words of Our Blessed Lord, they will hate the Church because they hated Him first. Christ did not care for his perception, and died because of it. I mean, that’s Christianity 101 (Or maybe it’s 304 now. It seems people think Jesus was a hippie peace-and-love figure who, through some ambiguous logic, volunteered himself for the Cross).

So we care not for perception. Which is good, because we do have a history of venerating women who strove to perfect their Christian virtue. The Blessed Virgin would be the first one, and ironically, the one every non-Catholic faith has trouble with us exalting. Next in line, Mary Magdalene, who we do not distinguish from Mary of Bethany nor the anointer of Jesus, and so venerate her incredible repentance and devotion to Our Lord and His Mother.

Then there is the Medieval Era, from which saints such as Hildegard von Bingen, Catherine of Siena, Joan of Arc, and Teresa of Avila hail from. That would be the same Hildegard von Bingen who could rival even the most learned male theologians, Catherine of Siena who even commanded the Pope’s respect, Joan of Arc who shaped France through her zeal for Christ, and Teresa of Avila, the monastic reformer.

And then there’s also that poor case of Catherine of Aragon, who was cast aside by Henry VIII, but not before he and his English diocese decided to “reform” the Church in England so he could do so. It really didn’t matter if she couldn’t produce an heir, the Catholic Church could not annul the marriage based on her physical conditions (and/or the King’s infidelity). It would have been, y’know, against God’s will, precisely because it’s pretty sexist.

Now, come to think of it, the 15th century “reforms” had a lot to do with how reformers viewed women, and they weren’t for good either. Martin Luther could not keep it in his pants, and neither could the King of England. Hence married priests in Lutheranism. Hence divorce and remarriage in Anglicanism. The seeds for misogyny and sexism were engendered in the period of the Reformation, not Roman Catholicism.

So again, we’re not entirely concerned with our perception. The world will always distort the One True Faith. When Christ set out to appoint only men for administrative positions in the Church, it was probably for a reason. Surely if women were perfectly fine he would’ve chosen his Mother and Mary Magdalene, who were as zealous as even Paul and Peter for the love of God. Instead, he chose the twelve apostles to govern his Church. One man would betray him, and another ten deserted him at his Passion. When they regrouped at Pentecost, the Holy Spirit inspired them to chose Barnabas to replace their ranks. Maybe they should have sought a Barbarella instead.

Perhaps Cranmer, it was another case of where Our Blessed Lord had some silly ideals about how to live a Christian life. Already the reformers thought Christ’s command of the Sacrament of Marriage was naive, and then to hand down his Church to foolhardy men, and men only?

How silly the Son of God could be.

Cranmer, you are popular because you are a brilliant conservative political commentator, with a witty and sharp insight into a lot of the issues facing the world today. But if there was ever proof that the Catholic Church contained the Truth, your mental gymnastics in criticising her ways – far more bizarre than any of your other opinions – are certainly a good showcase.

I only hope that you pray as fervently as you blog.

In Christ.”

St. Paul, a defender of celibacy.

Anonymous internet celebrity Archbishop Cranmer (obviously not the real one), has stated in his recent post that if he were elected Pope, he would roll back mandatory celibacy in the Catholic Church.

As if the state of the Anglican Communion was not enough to convince him otherwise, “His Grace” does ye olde biblical gymnastics and cherry picks quotes from the New Testament to prove his point, going so far as to make a case for St. Paul calling priestly celibacy the stuff of demons. My response below:

What a seriously deceitful and damaging observance you have made to the teachings of St. Paul, who hardly stated clerical celibacy was the stuff of demons. I really hope my immense anger is only righteous indignation for the Lord. That was disgusting cherry-picking.

No, Paul taught celibacy was a good thing. He made a circus of it in the first letter to Corinthians, a people known for their love of basal pleasures. In fact, he wished everyone were celibate (and though I am confused with the practicality of the notion, the Catholic in me dares not question his holy wisdom). And why did Paul teach celibacy was a good thing? Because it was taught by Christ himself.

In the 19th chapter of Matthew (and Luke 16; and Mark 10 by the way), Christ taught about marriage. In that same chapter, it was the apostles themselves who motioned celibacy to remain in holiness. Our Blessed Lord confirmed that idea when he said some will give it up for the kingdom of Heaven. So yes, tradition has it that even if the apostles had a family, they gave it up for the priesthood. Now you may understand why Paul had no bones expounding upon the matter.

Now the theology is cleared up, if the successors of Peter require priests under their jurisdiction to remain celibate, then what is bound on earth will be bound in Heaven. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that, and the relative strength of the Roman Church is proof of its disciplinary victory. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for the Anglican Communion. Your Communion has all the manner of married, gay, and female priests, and yet it is in a sorrier state than the Roman Church could ever hope to be. Perhaps the charism of the Holy Spirit are not found in Anglicanism.

You see, Cranmer, Catholics – sinful sufferers as we are – are pretty good at accepting the commandments of Our Blessed Lord and Apostles. When Christ said no divorce and re-marriage, he really did mean it; only the Catholic Church still beckons. When the disciples motioned celibacy, they were all ready for it; only the Catholic Church understands the apostolic zeal. And when Paul taught it was holier to be celibate than to be married, then by God, it’s true; only the Catholic Church professes it as such.

(And for that matter, when Christ gave Peter the keys to the kingdom of Heaven, and asked him to feed his lambs, we neither take it lightly or liberally. It is the Son of God, after all.)

This is why we’re still standing, despite being as weak as we’ve ever been. The One True Church is free from error in faith and morals, and the gates of Hell have not prevailed yet, even when demons are wrecking it from within. Despite our iniquities, our Church has continued for 2000 years. Despite our iniquities, She will continue on for another 2000.

I’ll finish off with a prayer, because after all, this is a matter of salvation, not mere political banter.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.