By Fr. Richard Heilman, Roman Catholic Man, March 23, 2019
This video was recently posted by Steve Skojec at One Peter Five. I raised this very concern a couple of years ago – as I was seeing small pockets of this emerging in my own parish, and seeing it replete in social media – and I was assaulted. Immediately, I was cast as an enemy of traditionalism and people who are traditionalists. The main argument against this was, “Why raise an issue that casts all traditionalists in such a poor light?” I had to back away, as the assault was severe.
Listen, as President Trump might put it, “You are not going to find someone who loves tradition more than me.” 😉 And, speaking from experience, I know full well that some of the holiest, most loving and most caring people I have ever met are people who could be viewed as traditionalists.
Because I have a special love for tradition and those who are traditional, I have a passion to see it flourish. And, I pride myself in being a strategist. I considered Bishop Morlino a supreme strategist, and he is my inspiration. So, if I recognize something that is a serious hindrance to the traditionalist movement, I go into action. In my parish, I have had to have conversations with individuals, and both Fr. Zuhlsdorf (who recognized the problem too) and myself have preached on this in many different ways. Even Bishop Morlino called a few on the carpet on this topic. Actually, I believe Bishop Morlino saw this as an extremely grave issue, as he SO wanted traditionalism to flourish.
So, I am very grateful to Fr. Chad Ripperger for sounding the same alarm bells I was attempting to ring. Even if there are those who shrug me off or Fr. Z or even Bishop Morlino, it seems it is very difficult to shrug off Fr. Ripperger.
Fr. Ripperger sees this as a VERY GRAVE problem actually effecting the process of recouping the tradition …
“These are general problems that you see, pretty much across the board, in almost every traditionalist apostolate. I just want people to be aware that these are the kinds of problems we are up against, and why it is actually causing damage to the traditionalist movement, and why the traditionalist movement isn’t being recouped as quickly … There are particular problems that really need to be addressed because they are very grave, actually … The first has to do with the fact that the traditionalist movement is slowly becoming a gnostic movement. By gnostic we mean, they think that they only have this secret knowledge that nobody else seems to have right now, and that there is something special about them because they get it and these other people don’t. And, how do we know it is becoming gnostic? Because they are constantly looking down and bad-mouthing anybody who goes to the new Mass.”
From here, Fr. Ripperger links this sin of pride he calls gnosticism, with the grave problem of impurity. I’ll let you listen to the video to hear is reasoning (Starts at 2:00 mark).
Then, Fr. Ripperger goes on to say,
“Then there is also another gnostic side to the traditional movement, and it is this isolationist attitude in relationship to the world … How can we evangelize people; how are we honestly going to attract people to Mass … here … if we look down on them? It’s basic psychology that people are naturally not going to go to a place where people are looking down on them.” Again, I’ll let you listen to the video to hear is reasoning (Starts at 5:18 mark).
Fr. Ripperger goes on by pointing to rampant depression and anger within the traditionalist movement brought on by their disapproval of the hierarchy. Many mull over and over and over how bad things are in the Church. You should never say anything against somebody unless it is just – meaning, it is good for them – and it is charitable. Again, I’ll let you listen to the video to hear his reasoning (Starts at 8:20 mark).
This is a very short video, but it is POWERFUL. I urge you to take a few minutes to listen to this very necessary teaching for our times and, especially, for the flourishing of the traditionalist movement.