He has been constantly negative about the one, visible, indefectible, Roman Catholic Church (which is in Rome), in which we must without the shadow of a doubt all remain or lose our salvation. This truth is taught to us by the same Church that taught us the nature of the Trinity, the sacrament of matrimony, and the Real Presence, so the Bear takes it seriously.
It is, ladies and gentleman, visitors, friends and woodland creatures, the bedrock truth which shall henceforth animate this blog.
The Bear has been saying "Nail your foot to the floor in front of your favorite pew, and die there," but his attitude has been crypto-schismatic. He has taken an unholy delight in clever criticism of the Pope of Rome that would make Martin Luther roar with laughter. In his pride, the Bear has tracked his page views as avidly as a pennant race. He has chuckled when he "just knows" Pewsitter is going to pick up a piece. (Not that Pewsitter isn't a great resource, in it's place.)
As a former lawyer-Bear, he suspects he got caught up in the game, the need for a "success" in his life to make up for the loss of his exciting career. Too often the Bear feels like he's living that comic-poignant moment in Tender Mercies, when the woman asks Robert Duvall's character, "Didn't you used to be Mac Sledge?" The long, insidious rot that can accompany the years after children, after career, and after most everything is something with which some of you may sympathize.
There was a lot of interest in the special essay, "SCHISM!" (An old circus Bear still knows how to get attention.) A comment from "J" struck the Bear to the quick. "J" said that he/she was considering leaving the Church, but that the Bear's essay had changed his/her mind (at least temporarily).
At first, the Bear was happy. But then he started wondering, what would "J" had done had "J" tuned into one of the Bear's entertaining rants, instead? The Bear might have been the very one to push "J" out of the Church.
The Bear thought of Christ's words in Matthew 12:34.
For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. The good man out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil man out of his evil treasure brings forth evil. I tell you, on the day of judgment men will render account for every careless word they utter; for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.Also, James 1:26: "If any one thinks he is religious, and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this man's religion is vain." The Bear could weary you with similar warnings. Please indulge him one more, from the Rule of St. Benedict. (The Bear is supposed to be a Benedictine Oblate, after all.)
Let us act in conformity with that saying of the Prophet: "I said I will guard my ways lest I sin with my tongue; I have put a bridle on my mouth; I was dumb and was humbled and kept silence from good things." Here the prophet shows that if we ought at times for the sake of silence to refrain even from good words, much more ought we to abstain from evil words on account of the punishment due to sin. Therefore, on account of the importance of silence, let permission to speak be rarely given even to the perfect disciples, even though their words be good and holy and conducive to edification, because it is written: "In the multitude of words there shall not want sin." And elsewhere: "Death and life are in the power of the tongue." For to speak and to teach are the province of the master; whereas that of the disciple is to be silent and to listen. Therefore, if anything is to be asked of the superior, let it be done with all humility and subjection of reverence, lest one seem to speak more than is expedient.The Blogger's Dilemma indeed! Bloggers live by a two-edged sword. The Bear is going to try to be much more careful, although, hopefully, not less entertaining.
Some would interpose the all-purpose "Emergency Exception" to justify writing just about anything. This is not the place to elaborate, but it is no longer for the Bear. (And, no, the Bear isn't thinking of anyone in particular.) But it should be clear he's just a plain ol' Roman Catholic Bear with no special sauce. He hopes his friends and woodland creatures stay with him to see where the blog goes. He would certainly miss them if they left.
|"I'm holding up a fish: this is the|
No more crypto-schismatic mentality.
From now on, the Bear's mission will be to counsel the doubtful, and comfort the afflicted.