Friday, April 15, 2016

Welcoming converts and reverts to a hijacked church

How is it possible? It's certainly tough. Anne Roth Muggeridge, in Desolate City, even admits to times when she and others felt inclined to discourage inquirers from seeking church membership, simply because of all the confusion. When you're read enough to see that many of the practices and beliefs encountered in typical suburban parishes are simply not Catholic, the task is even more daunting. What to do ...

In this one-and-a-half minute free video clip, Michael Voris brings an uncomfortably clear focus to the issue.

Converts or reverts undergo a life-changing experience and seize upon the nearest suburban 'Church of Nice' parish as a God-sent answer, completely oblivious to the fact that the parish is riddled with abuses. Then someone comes along and points out that this isn't the way things are supposed to be. You're asking people to make, first, a psychological jump from a way of viewing the world that was completely un-Christian to a new Christian worldview; and then you're asking them to make another jump because this new Christian life in the local AmChurch parish is also filled with errors. This is asking a lot of a person psychologically; and as Michael Voris suggests, it is fraught with dangers.


John L said...

If there is a SSPX chapel in the area, no problems arise.

Robert Allen said...

Obtuse Voris is wrong as usual. If I patiently give someone cogent, Magesterially sound reasons for disdaining an AmChurch liturgy, then they should at least accept my attendant invitation to St. Josaphat to see for themselves what it means to worship in 'Spirit and Truth.' Should they not understand my reasoning, that's one thing; I'll give it another try. But once they do get what I'm saying, they have no excuse for not taking me up on my offer. It's time to 'shake the dust off my sandals.'


Pertinacious Papist said...

Heh, Professor Allen, I wouldn't think of calling you 'obtuse', but it's "magisterially" with an 'i', not an 'e'. LOL.

While I agree with your main point (people need to learn the facts and conform to truth), I would cavil over (a) calling Michael "obtuse" and "wrong as usual" (which strikes me as unduly mean-spirited for a fellow-parishioner of mine doing a great deal of good work), and (b) missing his point about the psychological torque involved in a convert (or revert) discovering he's significantly mistaken twice over.

I've sponsored over 20 people coming into the Church via RCIA classes and a few of my best have reverted for what I think is just this reason. It's one thing to grasp a fact intellectually. It's another altogether to wrap one's emotions around having to make a whole life-change.

Perhaps the issue could be compared to the early Sartre's view of 'freedom' vs. his later view. You may remember his example of the young lady sitting in the cafe with the man who would like to seduce her. He puts his hand on her hand. Although she knows very well what's going on, she ignores it. The early Sartre says she is in 'bad faith' behaving as though she were not free to make a choice and slap him upside the head (well, that's a paraphrase!). The later Sartre concedes that there may be conditions limiting one's freedom -- for example, if she had been a rape victim previously and simply froze under the trauma of the seducer's advances.

The convert or revert who has settled comfortably into a suburban 'church of nice' AmChurch parish with his family who is later informed that conforming his behavior to the demands of authentic Catholicism may require a move to a more traditional parish may be closer to the condition described by the later Sartre than the earlier.

Happy Easter,

PS It was from a former theology teacher at Detroit Jesuit who was a server at St. Josaphat's that I first was encouraged to meet Michael. While I don't agree with a few things he says, even repeatedly, I value his work.

Pertinacious Papist said...

FYI ~ By the way, just to follow up about Michael, I think anyone whose exposure to Michael is limited to "The Vortex" is apt to get a fairly skewed view of him as well as his work, which now constitutes a community of over 40 devoted Catholics who produce all sorts of programming, including a daily News feed and half-hour 'Download' panel discussion (among 5 well-informed and credentialed members) on various topics of interest (from immigration and politics to the tridentine liturgy and communion in the hand).

Robert Allen said...

'It's another thing altogether to wrap one's emotions around having to make a whole life-change.'

That's a common source of obtusity, PP, the inability to set aside one's emotions so as to intellectually assent to what appears true in the light of natural reason, which I'm assuming my critique of the NO would be. It doesn't surprise me that Mr. Voris would be sympathetic to those who exhibit this fault when it comes to the arguments in favor of the TLM, since he himself seems incapable of wholeheartedly supporting it in word and deed and surely he's heard all those arguments. That's what I had in mind when I called him obtuse. I simply can't take seriously anymore any pronouncements regarding the Faith from Catholics who don't see that the whole problem with the HMC is the NO.

Robert Allen said...

As for 'Magisterium', I have seen it spelt my way, which definitely corresponds to how I've heard it pronounced. But ok ....

Pertinacious Papist said...

1) If the Angelic Doctor could find something of worth in the writings of the ancient pagan and Islamic philosophers and 'take them seriously', why should we find it so difficult to find something of worth in modern pagans, atheists, Protestants, not to mention fellow Catholics with whom we may have a quibble or two, and to 'take them seriously'?

2) The Latin source of the term, as you must know, is "magister."

James Joseph said...

It is unseemly for a Ph.D., no matter how piled high and deep should he be, to begin with an attack to the man.

I suggest laying out your argument; remaining civil.

Thus sayeth the butcher.

Wolfram the Mediocre said...

Did not see a free video clip, only a donate now button.

I'm not really a member of the I Like Mike club. He does do great work at times, no question. At other times he seems like a complete booby. I don't think having him as a fellow congregant would help.

Maybe its that Seinfeldian boing-boing introduction to the Vortex with the obligatory finger-swirly (which always puts me in mind of drunken New Year's Eve reveling with the Rat Pack). He needs a bit more gravitas. Maybe Michael Matt will let him borrow his wall of skulls catacombs set.

Anonymous said...

The title says it all.

The Cathedral has been turned into a brothel. Would you be a source of Christ's charity by inviting someone to partake in the "amenities" offered in a brothel?