Wednesday, 4 November 2015

A House Divided

I have not written a lot about the Synod, but it continues to... (is haunt the right word?...) me.

Last night I read Bishop Athanasius Schneider's powerful response to the final document. I was interested that he named our own Cardinal Nichols.

It seems to me that what +Schneider is saying, and indeed the known positions of various Cardinals who were at the Synod, such as ++Pell, ++Sarah, and indeed many others, are in stark opposition to what ++Nichols, ++Kasper and so on are saying (here for example, though as ever, ++Nichols' studied ambiguity makes it very hard to be sure quite what he means...).

So what is a Catholic to do? One's instinct is to look to the Holy Father: where is Peter on this? But that is not entirely clear (which in itself is a problem, I believe). So we then have to look a little more searchingly: what is the Tradition of the Church? What have previous Pontiffs said and, more importantly, formally taught? What do the Catechisms say? And in this case, we also have the very clear teaching of Our Lord and St Paul. So it is not difficult to conclude that +Schneider et al stand in the Faith of the Church, and insofar as ++Nichols et al are opposed to that, they have departed from the Church's teaching.  

If my analysis is correct, that is a grave situation indeed: one inevitably reflects on Mark 3:25, A house divided against itself cannot stand. However, we also have Our Lord's promise in Matthew 16:18 that 'the gates of hell shall not prevail against her (the Church).'

So we have to conclude that, even if, as at the time of the Arian heresy, many bishops are espousing heretical beliefs, the Church will stand: the bishops in error will either fall away, leaving the house still standing, albeit somewhat shaken by their fall; or they will come to their senses.  We hope and pray, of course, for the latter.

On another note, I am currently reading, inter alia, Christopher Booker's mighty work on The Seven Stories. I don't like his Jungian interpretations, but his fundamental analysis of story types is fascinating and compelling.

It led me to ask myself What is the story we are living through: is it a comedy of a tragedy?

I have to conclude that it is a Divine Comedy: that ultimately,  'All shall be well, and all shall be well and all manner of thing shall be well.' But that does not preclude personal tragedy, of course. Souls may be lost, and much damage done along the way.

But we must not lose the Faith, we must not lose Hope, and we must remain in Charity: for these three endure.


philipjohnson said...

Great post indeed.Cardinal against Cardinal,Bishops against Bishops.This was warned to us by Our Lady of Fatima and Our Lady of Akita and it is happening before our eyes- to those who have eyes to see.Smoke out the heretics in The Mystical Body of Christ to restore true faith again.We know who the heretics are and some of them reside in this country!!God Bless.

Anonymous said...

Ben, you may be interested that your name comes, as you say from the Italian and it was first employed by an Italian Fascist regarding the detestable and forged Protocols of Zion.

Ben Trovato said...


Thanks for your comment: I had not heard that before: do you have a reference?

Needless to say, if that is the origin of the expression, it is not why I have adopted the name.

Anonymous said...

Quite right to ask, "Ben,' and I can't find a solid reference. But I strongly suspect it was a Giovanni Preziosi, who published the first Italian version of The Protocols in the 30's I believe. I might have also read a reference to this in one of Eco's novels.
Why do you feel it necessary to conceal your identity, anyway? Mine's no secret.
But then, I have led a live of blameless rectitude, and have nothing worth hiding..

Ben Trovato said...

Ah, Toad, Toad,

You have not been reading my blog assiduously enough. If you had, you would both know the original reasons for my pseudonimity, and also know when I lifted the veil, and who, in fact, I am...

Of all sad words of tongue or pen...

Anonymous said...

True enough Ben. I'd never read your blog before yesterday.
However, re the quote, I begin to think it was an existing and recognised phrase before the Fascist Giovanni picked it up (if indeed he did). It is said to feature in "The Queen of Spades." by Tchaikovski.
Not that it matters all that much.

Anonymous said...

Ah - now I see. You are The Tichbourne Claiment.

Anonymous said...


Ben Trovato said...

...Tichborne, come to that!