On the other hand, an exceptionally good homily

That’s Good, with a capital-G. From the Holy Father’s homily during the Holy Thursday morning Chrism Mass (h/t Fr. Z.):

Two things, above all, are asked of us: there is a need for an interior bond, a configuration to Christ, and at the same time there has to be a transcending of ourselves, a renunciation of what is simply our own, of the much-vaunted self-fulfilment. We need, I need, not to claim my life as my own, but to place it at the disposal of another – of Christ. I should be asking not what I stand to gain, but what I can give for him and so for others. Or to put it more specifically, this configuration to Christ, who came not to be served but to serve, who does not take, but rather gives – what form does it take in the often dramatic situation of the Church today? Recently a group of priests from a European country issued a summons to disobedience, and at the same time gave concrete examples of the forms this disobedience might take, even to the point of disregarding definitive decisions of the Church’s Magisterium, such as the question of women’s ordination, for which Blessed Pope John Paul II stated irrevocably that the Church has received no authority from the Lord. Is disobedience a path of renewal for the Church? We would like to believe that the authors of this summons are motivated by concern for the Church, that they are convinced that the slow pace of institutions has to be overcome by drastic measures, in order to open up new paths and to bring the Church up to date. But is disobedience really a way to do this? Do we sense here anything of that configuration to Christ which is the precondition for true renewal, or do we merely sense a desperate push to do something to change the Church in accordance with one’s own preferences and ideas?

Fr. Z. notes:

Remarkable.  Benedict used this moment to answer that dissident group.  If any of those men have the slightest Catholic sense left in them, I imagine they would have to feel deep shame that Peter would on Holy Thursday itself use them as an example of the OPPOSITE of what priests should be.

Catholics, pray for him!

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6 thoughts on “On the other hand, an exceptionally good homily

  1. Thanks for the post. It is encouraging to hear the Holy Father defending orthodoxy. Indeed, we need to pray, as this is reported in the media by people that prey on the Church:

    “The head of the Pfarrer Initiative, Rev. Hellmut Schueller, downplayed the severity of Benedict’s message and said the pope was merely asking for reflection on whether disobedience can reform the church.
    In a telephone interview with The Associated Press, Schueller noted that Benedict didn’t forbid what the dissident priests were doing or advocating.
    ‘We are listening with interest to this message,’ he said. ‘I cannot see it as a very sharp wording.’
    The members of the initiative, Schueller said, will reflect on Benedict’s words as part of a dialogue he hopes to open with Austrian bishops.
    ‘We have decided to go this way because it’s the way of our conscience, as faithful, and we are expressing only the opinion of the people at the base of the church.’”

    And, as always, just in case you missed it:

    “And on Holy Thursday in 2002, Pope John Paul II broke his silence over the explosion of the U.S. sex abuse scandal, denouncing the sins of priestly abusers and the ‘grave scandal’ that was casting a ‘dark shadow of suspicion’ over all priests.”

    This is in the AP , here, but not here (in Spanish). While there is anticlericalism in other parts of the world, I wonder if its virulence is now higher in English speaking countries.

    Not sure if the 3 links work:
    http://hosted2.ap.org/OREUG/86053d8662944f7698388c63189f97c6/Article_2012-04-05-EU-Vatican-Dissidents/id-00a19425cfa147dc86baaf5fbc9b9189

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2125765/Follow-gods-human-caprice-Pope-lashes-priests-disobey-teachings-celibacy-female-priests.html

    http://www.abc.es/20120405/sociedad/abci-papa-sacerdotes-jueves-santo-201204051340.html

  2. Found some more. Apparently, Schüller and Schönborn are trying to put a positive spin on it. All publicity is good publicity, at least they’ve got the Pope’s attention, the first step is recognizing that there is a problem, etc.

  3. In my opinion, the Pope’s message includes a rather feeble reprimand to the Pfarrer dissidents. Getting a grip on Helmut Schüller and his disciples would involve threatening them with excommunication. Now that would be a papal warning with some teeth.

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