The latest conspiracy theory concerning the resignation of Pope Benedict goes like this: a group cardinals lobbying for Cardinal Bergoglio went to Pope Benedict and convinced him to retire because they had someone, very conservative (they said), waiting in the wings to take over. It was all set, they told him. He could go in peace. But then as soon as the resignation was official they sprung Bergoglio as the real candidate. And the rest . . .
As much as this satisfies the urge to have an explanation for something one does not understand, and while those who are likely to swallow this do so in reverence to Pope Emeritus Benedict, it paints him as a real chump—basically—as an idiot. Not to mention that in collaborating in this plan he would have executed a deed that would have resulted in automatic excommunication of all involved.
Needless to say, the point is to demonize Pope Francis.
This is not “news,” my friends, it is something quite different. Let it go.
Stand up for yourselves. Don’t settle for loser boyfriends who can’t bring themselves to pop the question because they’re either too busy “discerning” or they’re secretly gay or hooked on porn. Don’t settle for girlfriends who manipulate or tease you or who can’t be trusted or who won’t be there when you need them. Don’t settle for turning your vocation into an avocation, for jobs that simply fill space and make your life comfortable but that don’t give you the chance to do what God has made you to do. Don’t settle for an education that doesn’t force you to grapple with the deepest elements of Truth, Beauty and Goodness. Don’t settle for a Mass that’s contrived, filled with bad music and insipid preaching. Don’t settle for a parish that’s more anti-Christian than Christian. Don’t settle for the safety of living in Mom’s basement. And don’t let anyone mess with your shows. When you find what you love, defend it, fight for it, die for it – and (most challenging of all) live for it. *** The greatest writer of the 20th Century, my patron in heaven, put it much better than I ever could (my emphasis) …
In every romance there must be the twin elements of loving and fighting. In every romance there must be the three characters: there must be the Princess, who is a thing to be loved; there must be the Dragon, who is a thing to be fought; and there must be St. George, who is a thing that both loves and fights. There have been many symptoms of cynicism and decay in our modern civilization. But of all the signs of modern feebleness, of lack of grasp on morals as they actually must be, there has been none quite so silly or so dangerous as this: that the philosophers of today have started to divide loving from fighting and to put them into opposite camps. [But] the two things imply each other; they implied each other in the old romance and in the old religion, which were the two permanent things of humanity. You cannot love a thing without wanting to fight for it. You cannot fight without something to fight for. To love a thing without wishing to fight for it is not love at all; it is lust. It may be an airy, philosophical, and disinterested lust… but it is lust, because it is wholly self-indulgent and invites no attack. On the other hand, fighting for a thing without loving it is not even fighting; it can only be called a kind of horse-play that is occasionally fatal. Wherever human nature is human and unspoilt by any special sophistry,there exists this natural kinship between war and wooing, and that natural kinship is called romance. It comes upon a man especially in the great hour of youth; and every man who has ever been young at all has felt, if only for a moment, this ultimate and poetic paradox. He knows that loving the world is the same thing as fighting the world. – G. K. Chesterton
Fr. Z speaks of it here in the context of the question whether one may attend the civil wedding of a Catholic.
An excellent post that I hope will not be disparaged by those who insist that every problem be solved with hard and fast rules.
Read and learn.
Dan Burke from SpiritualDirection.com has invited me to write a series on “Mysticism and Magisterium.” The first installment is up: “Thinking with the Church.”
I am grateful for this opportunity. Thanks to Dan and Liz over at SpiritualDirection.com.
I will get back to my own series on the same subject. I have not forgotten. No, really.