I had two conversations this weekend which really opened my eyes to a couple of things that I had been mulling over in the back of my mind for quite some time.
When I made the move to being a traddy, I thought (and still do) that I can make a difference by my example. I thought that by showing people that being traddy is being Catholic, they would come to understand that the Church is traditional. I still believe that.
What I didn't realize was that by making the move to being traddy, that I would never again be mainstream within the Church. I didn't realize that I was going to have to suffer. I knew that suffering was part of being Catholic. I knew that suffering was part of being Christian. But I didn't realize the amount of suffering that I would have to endure at the hands of other Catholics.
Traditionalism is clear in it's practice. To adhere to the traditions and the Traditions of the Church, as they have developed, AUTHENTICALLY from the beginning until today. As has been seen from Pope Benedict, discerning that authenticity is of utmost importance. Not only should this be understood from a liturgical point of view, but also from a theological and a philosophical point of view. This will necessarily put traditionalists at odds with the liberals, because traditionalists DO NOT seek to reinvent anything, traddy's look to authentically exercise the faith as it has been handed down from the Apostles to the Magisterium today.
So, when someone decides that he is going to simply assist at the TLM, he is immediately stigmatized because he is apparently not in keeping with the "mind of the Church." Well, what does that really mean? Pope Benedict has been clear that the TLM and the Novus Ordo are to be equal. Two expressions of the same rite. Yet for me, and for thousands of others just like me, we must live on the outskirts and we must practice our faith as best we can doing with as little as possible. Some will say that this "spiritual poverty" is a good thing. I disagree. Spiritual poverty is a good thing when the Catholic can embrace it, not when it is forced upon him. Why should the traditional Catholic be relegated to the basement? Why should the traditional Catholic be denied the asperges, or incense or candles for procession? Why must we simply endure? The answers to these questions are simply this, the current leadership of the Church is paying lip service to the wishes of Pope Benedict, but not authentically promoting what he asks. And that is why we must suffer the liberals.
It is clear that the liberals work on a retroactive scale. When Ecclesia Dei came out and the indult was supposed to be garnered as generous, they limited it, according to Tres Abhinc Annos. When Summorum Pontificum came out, they are now attempting to limit it to what Ecclesia Dei asked. So, this is how the suffering begins, we must look at everything as being retroactive, or we can wait for the leadership to change. The Church is clear, it is her leaders who are not.
I will end this blog post with a series of questions. Why is it so hard for the leadership of the Church to follow the mind of the Church? Is it because they don't want to admit that their view is wrong? Is it because they don't want to admit that the Sacred Tradition of the Church is always going to shine through?