Saturday, October 3, 2015

Lift Embargo: Comments On

For the first time ever, St. Corbinian's Bear blog turned off comments for three days. Everybody, including the Bear, needed some time out.

Now comments have been reactivated.

For three days, you can say whatever you want. You're leaving the woodlands forever; the Bear should be Bruno-ed; why the Church sucks; why our only hope is [fill in the blank] instead of the plain ol' Roman Catholic Church. You can say the fix is in for the synod approving gay marriage and communion for "divorced and remarrieds." (Bear suspects no / yes, but we'll all know for sure, soon enough.)

Above all, you may comment on the articles posted.

After three days the Bear shall use a heavy paw in moderating comments. He is not going to shake people's belief in the Church. (We have enough people inside the Church doing that without piling on.) He is not going to provide a platform for others to do so. Fair enough? Make sense?

In other words, this is no longer a general purpose conservative Catholic blog.

"Here's the important part!"
Now the Bear holds up a fish to demonstrate the importance of what follows. What the Bear will do is talk about being a faithful Catholic in the Church as it is today. That's not always easy. The Bear believes Catholic identity -- belonging -- is not a matter of right belief (like the Orthodox) or passing individual judgment on everything (like the Protestants). A baby is baptized, and he's a Catholic. He belongs. The baby doesn't know anything. Doesn't prefer a Latin Mass, isn't for or against the death penalty, but is nonetheless a Catholic.

Obviously, what we believe matters, but when we put our orthodoxy before the very Church from which we receive those beliefs, something is wrong. What we believe matters, but why do we toss the Catechism of the Catholic Church then study Denzinger, comments by saints, private revelation, and any sources, as long as they are prior to 1960? Do we run the risk of piecing together our own personal "FrankenChurch" in opposition to the plain ol' Roman Catholic Church. There's something wrong. And when we can't abide the overwhelmingly predominate liturgy in the Catholic Church because it's not "correct," and we don't like it, something is wrong.

Some say the Church is wrong. The Bear says we're often wrong. He realizes this is not a message his previous readership appreciated. Most of them are already gone. Obviously this makes the Bear sad, even though he knew it would happen. The Bear is sorry, but not for the change in course. He believes he is pleasing God if he helps just one person. The anger from which many of his articles came is gone. The Bear feels peaceful, and it is not just a pre-hibernation drowsiness caused by the cold snap.

The Bear's philosophy is loyalty to the plain ol' Catholic Church. That doesn't mean any aspect is above criticism in context, as the Bear's latest article on Pope Francis proves. The Bear believes anyone should continue enjoying this blog -- except, perhaps, some who refuse to be challenged by the occasional article on something they don't agree with.

The Bear is not above any other Church critic. He devoted a whole blog to cleverly entertaining people at the Church's expense. Read his "Confession" if you haven't, and are curious. Read his "Schism" for the practical aspects of this new attitude. (That got picked up by Pewsitter, for some reason, but the Bear is grateful.) Read "Tell Me is Something Eluding You Sunshine?" and "The Wicked Bear -- An Allegory." (And "The Wicked Bear" is not about marriage, the Bear will tell you that.) He is not sitting in judgment of anyone but himself.

What you will see, if you read these articles, is the Bear struggling with the morality of what he was doing, and developing a new approach. One that "counsels the doubtful" and "comforts the afflicted."

The Bear has been a mere circus sideshow attraction long enough. Now he's going to be a circus sideshow attraction while handing out pro-Catholic tracts. Nothing is easier than cleverly riffing off of the boobery of Church nabobs. Stick around and watch the Bear play this game on hard mode.

After three days, any comment that would tend to encourage people to leave the plain ol' Roman Catholic Church, will become a Bear snack. This will be in the judgment of a mercurial, fallible but sincere Bear who is doing something a little different for the sake of his brothers and sisters, and the indefectible Roman Catholic Church, outside of which there is no salvation.


  1. Dear Bear,
    It might be fun to feature stories about mischievous Catholic bears. A long time ago when I was very young, I was sleeping by the shore of a lake that has no name, North of lake Superior. I was traveling with an Irish friend and we were on our way West to seek our fortunes as the Arctic Dewline was then under construction.
    I was half awakened by a bear licking my face - I thought it was a dog. Eyes closed, I reached up and grabbed his lower jaw, my fingers in his mouth, and shoved. Big dog. He returned and this time I bopped him on the nose just as my friend woke. The two stood up and ogled each other and ran away in opposite directions as I slept on.
    Again my daughter, a nurse serving in a psychiatric hospital was camping with a chum (an English lady) in a nearby forest. She was keen to take pictures of fungus she had never sen before when her friend quietly she might be interested to know they had company. She turned to see a bear some four feet behind her and said: "Oh - he's fine - not aggressive." and went back to adjusting her focus.
    It's fun to see how Europeans react to Canadians as they relate to bears.


    1. That's funny. Going for the lower jawbone is what bears do, so he may have figured, "I don't know what this thing is, but it must know something I don't!" (In fact, one of the tags here is "jawbone ripping'.")

  2. My spiel is that I don't like what goes on at most novus ordo masses today. I am not a "fan" of Francis, but I pray for him.

    I do believe, however, what the Roman Catholic Church teaches and presents in the catechism. I believe Jesus established the Roman Catholic Church on the rock of Peter his disciple. I believe the content of the Creed.

    Popes come and go. Pastors and bishops come and go. Jesus is forever. The Church is forever. Hmmm....just like marriage...

  3. Makes uncommon sense to me. May your "snacks" be few ... and your meals being what the Lord has given - our Daily Bread. Deo gratias

  4. Dear Bear,
    I just wanted to say that I too was on the fence with stay/go, with one foot out the door. But your change of blog direction provided the conviction for me to stay put. I am a convert distressed that more and more the Church is unfamiliar to me as a Catholic BUT becoming very familiar to me as a Protestant. Thank you.

    1. Thank you so much! We'll make it through together.

  5. Very good Bear. Let's see how it goes. Remember we are the Church Militant and must fight error wherever we find it especially among Catholics and especially if the Catholic in question happens to be the Pope.

  6. Good job, Bear! Thanks for being such a help to those of us who sometimes get overwhelmed by all of the angst going on in the Holy Roman Catholic Church right now. You help us focus on the Truth, not just the latest sound bite.

  7. Dear Mr Bear,
    I hope it is still permissible to warn against those who would wound Holy Mother Church by promoting and teaching error?
    And surely pre 1960 truth does not change, and any development cannot subsequently contradict what came before?

    1. The Bear believes -- as every Catholic should -- that the Church is indefectible. It is a teaching from the same Church as taught whatever doctrine you wish to hold up for protection. Logically, if the Church errs, it is not indefectible. If it is not indefectible on one point, what principled method do you have of knowing what it is right on and what it is wrong on? Now -- if the Church is not indefectible -- what do we trust? Pick a date: 1960, after which the Church is no longer indefectible? And where does that idea come from? Certainly not from the Church!

      I suppose it would be fair to ask you, EM, how you resolve a belief that the Church errs with the doctrine of indefectibility?

      We'll have to wait and see what happens. The Bear, like the Supreme Court, doesn't consider hypothetical questions. (Bearonet of Beesworth, Sir Bear is probably as far as the Bear is willing to go at this moment. That might repay close reading, by the way.)

    2. P.S. the Bear is not going to be in the business of scandalizing the little ones. There are plenty of blogs that do that. There's no rancor in that statement, or superiority, it is just a fact. Many of them are very good. The Bear has a different thing going on.

      As for the Church, any issues raised by the synod or any other Church element will be addressed honestly, in context, and carefully.

    3. If anyone is scandalized by any of this it is not scandal but an awakening of the naive which, in fact, is a spiritual work of mercy.
      Folks are not coming to this site to play with a teddy bear--at least I hope not. If they do, Bear, please roar at them once in awhile.

    4. I do not believe that "ever mindful" was, in any way, expressing a belief that the Church errs with the doctrine of indefectibility.


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