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Saturday, May 19, 2012

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LJ

"When Benedict XVI reestablished the celebration of the older Latin Mass, voices of protest rose up from many sides. The widespread fear was-and is-that the Pope had revealed himself as the reactionary defender of tradition that many have accused him of being since he was the prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the former Holy Office."

I understand the author's point, yet I find myself bristling at the automatic ceding of many of us to the evaluation of "reactionary" presumed by so many of the modernist and dissenting ideologues who borrow the term from the political left. I in no way concede that "reactionary" is by definition a bad thing. On the contrary, the progressive must demonstrate the necessity and efficacy of their changes before gaining any credibility, as it should be.

Recently, at a wedding reception I had the opportunity to speak to a serious minded orthodox Eastern Orthodox relative and he expressed to me an opinion I found fascinating. He holds Benedict XVI in high regard, more so even than JPII precisely because of his willingness to take a firm stand on orthodoxy and by extension the liturgy, since the liturgy expresses the level of orthodoxy in large measure. This is especially true in the ordinary form, which, even in its strictest adherence holds enough flexibility to be a barometer of the spiritual condition of the priest at minimum and often the parish itself.

It seems to me that what was unsaid was that some Eastern Orthodox (and they have their bitter divisions as well) find that unification would be a lot more palatable were the Catholic Church to be able to get its own house in order. My young relative expressed great confidence in Benedict XVI to do so.

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