Saturday, September 19, 2015

BREAKING: Roman Catholic Church Found

BREAKING: Roman Catholic Church found in Italian capital of Rome

The Bear presumes that nearly everyone reading this blog is a good Catholic. That his or her heart is in the right place. So there is certainly no belittling or rancor in anything the Bear writes about the choices people have felt they had to make.

Nonetheless, he must say that he disagrees with any solution that means leaving the Church.

And let's not get too cute. There is no doubt what the Church is, or, better, where the Church is. You will search far and wide in the history of the Church and you will not find a doctrine of "the invisible Church" meaning something separate and distinct from the hierarchical Church. Such a thought would have left all saints, all popes and all councils aghast. The one thing a Catholic doesn't have to do is search for the Church. If you imagine an "invisible Church of pure doctrine" that you can belong to, after you leave the "corrupt hierarchical Church," you are, frankly and in all charity, deluding yourself.

"The invisible Church" is 100% Reformer doctrine designed to distinguish and justify the "invisible Church of real believers in their various sects" from the "corrupt Church of Rome." The Church of Doctrine, the Church of Liturgy, and the Church of the Hierarchy are all the one, selfsame Church that Christ founded on the first Pope and has the big fancy building in Rome.

Think about the Reformers. They, too, thought they were doing a good thing by extracting True Christianity from the clutches of the corrupt and error-riddled Church of Rome. They, too left the Church, while all the time saying they never left the Church -- as they defined it.

And let's not pretend that "Vatican II" will cover all sins if you're mistaken. In fact, the only group Lumen Gentium apparently reserves for hellfire are apostate Catholics. "Whosoever, therefore, knowing that the Catholic Church was made necessary by Christ, would refuse to enter or to remain in it, could not be saved." Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, Lumen Gentium, 14.

If you don't like Vatican II, there is the dogma of extra ecclesiam nulla salus that the Bear has frequently talked about. Is there any doubt that the men who drafted those formulations knew exactly what the Church was? Do you think they meant, "the Church Only So Long as We Agree With Her," or "the Invisible Church of Pure Doctrine and Sublime Liturgy as Separate From a Corrupt and Erroneous Hierarchy?" Or, "The Church Until the Synod on the Family in the Year of Our Lord 2015, Which Is Its Expiration Date?" Or, "The Church Until a Bad Pope Named Francis Takes the Throne of Peter?"

We all know exactly what the Church is now, and always has been, although you can pretend otherwise all you wish. And the Bear is here to announce -- even growl -- it's not some outfit out of Oyster Bay Cove, New York. (Really, is that where God would put His Church?) And if you want to know what the Church says about SSPV or any group, it's no secret. Hey, no problem: that's what She's there for. (Besides, no matter how traditional you are, some more rigorous group is going to think you're a gaggle of Modernist cream puffs.)

God made it simple for us. God is like that. We don't have to find a secret Church, discover an underground line of priests, or make personal rulings on everything the Church does (although we can talk about them). Consider how this is a phenomenon of our tiny slice of history. Above all, we cannot separate our preferred liturgy from the Church, or a particular moral teaching (even if it is sound) from the Church, or even prelates from the Church, even if we think they're idiots. These elements are all the One, True Church.

We are Catholics. That means something! We belong to a Church, in good times and bad. Please don't start listing all the problems. We all know them. They are not the issue. It is not a simple: "Church has x problems, therefore I leave." That's the Protestant solution. And the Bear is sure you don't treat your spouse like that. The real equation is "Church has x problems, therefore I must nail my foot to the floor in front of my favorite pew."

Here's the Bear's secret. You can recognize that prelates are idiots, and that they are idiots in the One True Church, You can be confused, and be confused in the One True Church. You can even be scandalized and heartbroken, and be scandalized and heartbroken in the One True Church. The one thing you can't be is be Catholic, and be Catholic outside of the One True Church.

Where is the One True Church? Where it's always been. In Rome. With the big fancy buildings full of untrustworthy schemers.

We got this.


  1. Big fancy buildings get knocked down all the time. How many times was the Holy Sepulcher rebuilt, and in between used as a saracen horse stable? The Church is the Body of Christ WITH his teachings...HIS deposit of Faith given and preserved entirely and without change or alteration. "Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her; and if she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery"....sound familiar?...apparently not to the pope!

    the SSPX isn't exactly 'invisible' is a very visible presence, a Catholic presence (stated as such even by the likes of frank), within the Catholic Church (irregular status, yes yes yes blah blah blah). I fear that SAINT Athanasius and his self-appointed bishops, 5 times in an 'irregular status' (though certainly not before God!) would have been looked on by you as 'outside' of the Church when they were no such thing.

    we have a papal motu proprio declaring Catholic divorce....a pope who says souls that don't get to heaven are simply obliterated...a pope who says, well, you know.

    I am still in my NO parish; I am still teaching CCD straight out of the great Faith and Life series; I am still in my favorite pew hanging on by the last battered sliver of a fingernail. But by God, if this clowncar of a hierarchy comes down with a document or even a proclamation declaring sodomy (sodomy!!!) in any way, shape, or form to be a blessing/positive good/gift/ et-freakin'-cetera, I will be in an SSPX pew so fast the windburn will be felt a mile off. And I will have not one whit of conscience pang over it. I will wait out the insanity in a place of refuge and grace, while remaining smack dab in the center and heart of the Catholic Church.

    Think I'm being hyperbolic?...have you seen this? ...all under the official aegis of the German conference of 'catholic' 'bishops', headed up by the pope's closest advisor, and the pope's personal God!, we're in trouble!

  2. Selling indulgences was pretty egregious too, so I guess Martin Luther was justified in kickstarting the Reformation? Let's wait until the Church sanctions gay marriage before we starting thinking what we're going to do about that. And you can leave the Church (the real one, in Rome, that everybody thinks of when you say "the Church,") but know this: you will no longer be Catholic. You might be comfortable, but you won't be Catholic. Did St. Athanasius choose to leave the Church? The history is a bit murky, so I wish people would stop citing St. Athanasius as the model and solution to our problems today.

    But back to my premise, is there slightest bit of doubt in your mind that the Roman Catholic Church is a visible body with an identifiable hierarchy, Badger? Headquartered in Rome, since, well, the beginning? In or out? Or one foot in and one foot out, on account of the SSPX? They like their old liturgy and think the newer one is an outrage before God. They don't like Vatican II. All they have to do is sign off on a pastoral council of the Church and they're in. Think how much good they could do. But they know better. They aren't sure they want to be in THAT Church, but still want a line of credibility to it for people who aren't ready to take the plunge off the Ark. I can't help but wonder if there is not an element of pride to all of this.

    To you, dear Badger, the Church does seem invisible. An invisible Church of Correct Doctrine whose (optional) hierarchy is valid only so long as they behave. To me, the Church makes the doctrine, and that's something I can cross of my to-do list. Is Pope Francis going to go crazy and declare homosexual marriage an infallible dogma of the Church? Or are some Germans (always wacky) on the edge of schism laying down a marker to secure a tactical advantage at the ill-advised synod?

    I'm going to stay Catholic. And I literally don't give a s**t what Francis does during his brief time as Pope. Yeah, it sucks to be Catholic in our age. At least we're not being thrown to lions, (Although I think a Bear could take a lion. Get him in a Bear hug. And nail-your-foot-to-the-foor Bear hug to you Badger. Because the Bear cares.)

    1. yeah, that's right....THE POPE just gave faculties for non-Catholics, priests ordained in Apostolic succession, outside of the Church, to hear Confessions and to grant absolution. Do you realize how unhinged that sounds? Of course they're Catholic priests....if they're wrong now, then 2,000 years of Catholicism has been wrong. And remember, francis himself called them Catholic! And please Tim, with all due respect, don't presume to tell me what I think; especially when you're very wrong. I don't see an 'invisible' Church. The hierarchy is valid only so long as they are Catholic...can you honestly say that's the case wiith francis, marx, maradiega, kasper, fernandez, baldeserri, forte, et al? I don't recognize their teaching as anything but a modernist/anthropomorphized/universalist/pantheism. The Church is NOT in the place (Rome or otherwise) where the teachings go against the Church's Magisterial teaching (i.e., the Deposit of Faith)...and Our Lady herself said that "Rome will lose the Faith" (!) You, dear friend, are confusing geography with eternal Rome. Even while located in Avignon, the pope was of UNIVERSAL Rome.

      This pope and his hierarchy have already crossed an uncrossable and an unthinkable line, and everything following by the cheerleaders is really starting to smack of papolatry. He is teaching and pronouncing against the Deposit of Faith and the very words of Our Lord!...he's done it already....anything in addition is just doubling and tripling down on the unthinkable.

      I'm thinking, and this is just my opinion, that years from now when saner heads and hearts prevail and you and I are firmly packed in the ground (if Our Lord hasn't already returned), bergoglio is going to be proclaimed a heretic and an anti-pope...the worst one in all of Church history; and our progeny will be looking at us saying, "how did those idiots follow a man who said and did THAT? did they not storm Rome with pitchforks?"

    2. cont....
      And this , "All they have to do is sign off on a pastoral council of the Church and they're in" really rich. First of all, they're already in (!...irregular status (like ATHANASIAS!), but in), second of all, "all you have to do is pinch a little incense Polycarp, and you live". What's wrong is wrong, and they are the only MEN man enough to say it, while still recognizing the papacy. They have 4 major issues that VII blew up from Tradition ...ecumenism (cause, yeah, we all know how well that's gone!), 'freedom' of religion as always understood in Catholic teaching (VII took it 180 out), the supremacy of the RCC over other religions (you YOURSELF see the problem with VII's teaching on that), and relationship with the Jews (for Heaven's sake, we've stopped trying to convert them!...what'ya think St. Paul would have to say about that?). I'm not going to argue the rabbithole of VII yet again, but for the love of God, look at the fruit!...seriously, open your eyes....smell the coffee already. The SSPX smelled it a long time ago, and stayed faithful, while. still. recognizing. the. papacy.

      I understand you've got some issues having gone once to a schismatic sect and, thank God, having returned, but to put the SSPX on a par with the Orthodox is just simply calumny. I won't feel 'more comfortable' there....I'll ache and suffer everyday, just like I'm doing now, but I will know, KNOW beyond ANY doubt that I'll be following the Church's indefectable teachings as handed down by Christ and His Apostles, and practiced by same-said Church for 2,000 years. Next time you're listening, with the nail in your foot, to Fr. jazzhands drone on about how we must now...because now we're so merciful... 'welcome all divorced-remarried's up to the table of the lord' (and soon, very soon, to be added sodomites), ask yourself honestly if you'll be able to feel the same level of surety.

      I'm not in the Society's pew yet....but I tell you, from the center of my soul...that hesitation is beginning to feel like disobedience to Christ. These are not normal times, and I have to at least give thought to the possibility that God allowed (by His divine will) a place of preservation for His people...yes a remnant, small but entirely visible and recognizable by their obedience to HIM and His teaching ("If you love Me, keep My Commandments"!) Benedict said that the Church would get very small, but stronger....hello??? I have to consider this, and I think the next month or so will take lift all remaining fog.

      We can keep going back and forth on this, but a Bear-Badger fight is never a pretty thing to watch, and is usually awfully bloody. We disagree here, and we're both gonna have to make our decisions. We're all gonna have to make our decisions. May God, in His mercy and Love, help us.


    3. We shall cordially disagree. It's not that I don't know what's going on around me. You and I have a fundamental disagreement. I belong to a Church, no matter how deranged elements within it become. I'm not going anywhere, because that's where I belong. Whatever the Germans or Pope Francis do cause problems in our tiny slice of time is on them. The Bear will die at his post, and maybe he will get a pat on the head for whatever qualities made his solution conceivable. BTW "Tim" is just another name, like Ursula Archer. The Bear is just the Bear :-) The Bear would offer a chaste Benedictine kiss of peace, but knows from experience people scream and run away.

  3. I think you don't really read what I write. Alas. And a kiss of peace to you also.

    1. I thought I did, but if I have been careless, I apologize.

    2. It's OK Bear...I think we all get a little myopic in our zeal for Christ...I think He takes it all into consideration. God bless you.

  4. What about a schism with two Popes: one Francis, the other Burke? Where do you go with that Mr. Bear?

    Basically, I like Susan's arguments. For example, if you were nailed to the pew with your wife and children at Mass and the priest said it was OK for a homosexual couple to make love, what would you do? Personally, I think Christ would approve of you going to an SSPX Church. After all, the Catholic Church is not about legalisms. It is about believing in Christ and his teaching and historical doctrine of the Catholic Church.

    1. Very easy, Michael. First of all your scenario with Burke will never happen. There's a reason the Supreme Court will not decide hypothetical questions :-) Even so, I would be an easy question, I would stay with Francis, unless it were shown that his election was invalid.

      As for your other question, it also is easy. I might get up and walk out, and would certainly send Father an email with a link to this blog. I would think I had a seriously misguided priest (as I do in some matters). I would have a sit down with my family and tell explain why Father was wrong.

      What would ever occur to me is to leave the Church. I must be communicating poorly, because I've tried every way I can think of to explain how I decouple belonging to the Roman Catholic Church (which is necessary to salvation) and personally agreeing with everything the hierarchy does or says. I am learning many traditionalists seem to have a different head set. They're in the Church so long as things aren't too bad, or they can agree with most of what's going on in their tiny slice of history. My commitment is absolute. If Pope Francis personally marries two homos in St, Peter's basilica, the Bear's reaction shall be "Wow, that's an abomination in MY ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH. MY ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH has a horrible Pope. MY ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH is in deep trouble. My mother needs Bears more than ever. I would remain Catholic because that is the only thing I can be, and the any place I can receive the sacraments. (No faculties for confession and absolution in SSPX; this is a simple fact.)

      I realize I am alienating my audience, friends and woodland creatures, but it is a sin to leave the Church. (And as I pointed out in the last article, where and what the Church is is another stubborn fact).

      I wish my friends could see how Christianity was not set up to be a belief in right teachings outside of the visible, historical, hierarchical Roman Catholic Church. If that is the case, let's all become Protestants, since that is the very definition of Protestantism. After all, they say they're in the Church -- as they define it.

      So everyone is estopped from arguing the Church is doing bad things. I know. I have written 650 blog articles, mostly about that very thing. That is not the question. It is a datum. A challenge. The only question is what you do with that. Leave or stay? And I'm afraid going somewhere other, better, purer, than the place with the fancy buildings filled with untrustworthy schemers has often been tried with the best of intentions. And we know where the road paved with those leads.

    2. Very good Mr. Bear. I admire your loyalty to the Catholic Church regardless of what transpires. For all intents and purposes the Catholic Church is de facto Protestant especially among it's members. To me when it become de jure Protestant, it is time to leave. After all, saving your soul is more important than loyalty to a failed institution.

    3. Yep--"work out your salvation with fear and trembling."

  5. Martin Luther saw the log in the Church's eye and tried to remove it. He should have reformed by re-forming himself within the Church. I am a witness to good folk trying to beat piety into the heads of ignorant folk. I have seen a priest who loves his people as a good shepherd should, slowly, with love and patience, bring people to want to love God more and more. (Thank you Fr. P. Tighe)
    With Christ, I hope to nail my foot to the floor.
    This is the best blog ever because of the Bear's writings and his traveling companions (me excluded) who express honesty so clearly that it is agonizing. God bless.

  6. I think many traditionalists stand with you, Bear, realising how easy it is to become just another splintered Christian sect. But they are not as hard on the SSPX as you are. I'm thinking particularly of the people at the Remnant. They are big FFSP boosters, I believe. The FFSP is the perfect solution for these times. Alas, there are too few of them.

    1. FSSP are all ordained in the Vat2 questionable rite by bishops ordained in the very questionable V2 rite. Wouldn't want one giving me last rites.

      Seattle kim

  7. And Michael, sodomites don't "make love". They debasedly anally penetrate each other. I hope never to see in print again, especially on a catholic blog, the act of sodomy described as you did above. You are adopting the tactics of the enemy.


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