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By Casey Chalk, The Catholic Thing, Jan. 26, 2022

Casey Chalk is a contributor for Crisis Magazine, The American Conservative, and New Oxford Review. He has degrees in history and teaching from the University of Virginia and a master’s in theology from Christendom College.


Casey Chalk“The Latin Church,” wrote the prolific satirist H.L. Mencken, “which I constantly find myself admiring, despite its frequent astounding imbecilities, has always kept clearly before it the fact that religion is not a syllogism, but a poem.” Given that Mencken was a religious skeptic who wrote columns lambasting fundamentalists at the 1925 Scopes “Monkey Trial,” we should consider his remarks on Catholicism a sort of compliment. . . even if the Church is guilty of “imbecilities.”

I wonder what words Mencken would use to describe the recent document from the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, Responsa ad dubia (“Responses to doubts”), on certain provisions of Pope Francis’ July 2021 Motu Proprio, Traditionis Custodes, regarding the Traditional Latin Mass (TLM), which further limits its practice. …

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