Apostolic Visitation to Ireland: The Blind Leading the Blind

Regarding the just released summary report of the Apostolic Visitation I’ve basically said all I wanted to say here at Rorate Caeli.  How on earth can these churchmen be so blind?


Posted on March 20, 2012, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. You made a good point on Rorate: “… leaving liberals and secularists free to present their own narrative as unquestioned dogma. (According to this version ‘clericalism’ and excessive regard for orthodoxy are to blame for all the woes of Irish Catholicism.)”

    And your point is immediately proven. Guess where? Go on, you’ll never!

    You really don’t (okay, I know you won’t) want to go near today’s Irish Times, which not only has a leader which is Mr. McG in full spittle-flecked mode, but also has The Great Vincenzo in full pontificatory (does he have any other mode?) flow.

    Well, I could (almost) forgive Vincey for his article – it’s what he does, after all and God help him, he’s getting on. But to put the bilge from that third-rate activist as a first leader has really ensured that I will never again buy that paper – I had confined myself to the odd Saturday, for the TV and Sports, and I encountered today’s sewage online. But NEVER ever again, after three generations in my family. I know you’ve often said it’s on the way out anyway. About time.

    • lol..I never buy newspapers now (and could not express in words how much I detest them). I have no idea why they put up everything online. Surely this is suicide from their perspective?

      The IT’s future isn’t bright anyway. Its circulation is plummeting. They also made some pretty stupid moves during the boom. (Hard to believe that only 6 years ago, they paid €50 million to buy MyHome.ie.)

  2. I should leave it… I really should, and I already have blood pressure, but…

    In or around 2002 the Lady was revealed to have some very unsavoury secrets concealed about her rectitudinous person, not least the revelation that the former editor was still on colossal remumeration and the owner/”patron”/whatever, of the much-vaunted Trust (old Major McDowell) was trying to establish some sort of a family succession, a la North Korea. There was a revolution among the journos. There was, even then, some sort of schadenfreude among the rest of us, tired of the pompous posing as the “paper of record”. It really does stick in the craw to be subjected to lectures from those who are hardly paragons of basic corporate governance in their own backyard.

    Anyway, to the point. Br. Tom Forde on Rorate Caeli makes the observation that the real meat of the report will not be released as, he says, the Church “doesn’t wash her laundry in public”. Very true. However, even if it were revealed I don’t think anything would change – just more hand-wringing and pious vapourising wrapped in V2-speak (“caring”, “reaching out”, “pastoral”) from the official Church sources, and a lot more of the ill-informed venom and special-interest pleading masquerading as journalism or “opinion” from all the usual suspects and a few more.

    The fact is, they are never going to get a fair hearing this side of eternity, as long as the current secularist mindset is in the ascendant – which looks like being a long time, barring something like… ummmm… fire from heaven?… the dead arising and appearing to editors? Nah – as Someone said a while back: “If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they believe, if one rise again from the dead.” So that one’s out then.

    Seriously, Shane, to answer your question as to how they can be so blind: I think that they have spun themselves into this cocoon of embracing the World, which back in the 60s, 70s and most of the 80s was still ready to play that game, charmed that these former powerful ones were now in courtship mode. Then the World got tired of the little game, as it does, and turned on them (and us because we are, after all, one Church). But our leaders are like rabbits in the headlights, or the rejected puppy crying “please like me”. And being ignored until it’s time for another kicking.

    Meanwhile, emptier churches every week, older congregations, and our episcopal leaders confused as to why their latest bout of evangelisation or whatever isn’t working. Hint # 1: people have got to be convinced that you believe totally in what you’re saying, so much so that you’ll actually be prepared to go to the stake for giving counter-cultural witness to it. Hint # 2 – yes, counter-cultural: that means that you’ve got to give up the ingrained habit of 40+ years of trying to go a little bit of the road with everybody and “being nice”. Hint # 3: maybe actually go to that stake the odd time, rather than talking about it. Which means that you start talking like a real Church leader should, and not as if you’re trying to compose the next editorial for the Nu-church Post. Or should that be “Times”?

    • Very interesting!

      Alas, I share your skepticism about the reports. I mean, Cardinal Cormac? Who on earth thought he would make a good inquisitor?!

      It may take decades yet for any meaningful change.

  3. What is needed in Ireland is one brave and staunch orthodox Bishop who will not be intimidated by a grossly hostile secular media, and who would impose a strict observance of Catholic tradition and Church teachings on those clergy ministering in his diocese.Someone, for instance,such as Bishop Fellay of the SSPX, if please God, they can reach an agreement with the Vatican.

  4. The clerics chosen to carry out the visitation were a clear sign that there would be no progress in cleaning out the Augean stables which is the Church in Ireland. My intuition is that it will be innovative communities like the Benedictines of Strathmullen that will turn the situation around in this country. It will take a long time.

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