Monday, November 24, 2008

John Paull II vs. Paul VI

TB made a comment on my last entry:

"In F.C.'s first post on this blog, he traced his claimed "Catholic Wintertime" to bishops appointed by Pope John Paul II. Seems to follow that his claimed "Catholic Wintertime in Milwaukee" would be preceded by what he'd view as sunnier times with an archbishop appointed by an earlier pope."

While there are obviously faults with bishops chosen by Paul VI, overall I would say that they were more thinking bishops. One need only compare a homily from Weakland and Dolan to get the gist of what I am saying. The former homily has depth, the latter homily is usually shallow. And Dolan is a smart guy, but he did not get where he is at by being smart. He got to where he is at by being social and following the JPII party line. There is an air of sophistication around Weakland that makes his failings that much more miserable to hear about. I held him in higher regard than that.

One last point. It was the Paul VI bishops of the 80's that addressed issues of abortion, economics, peace, etc. It is the bishops of JP II that address the issues of abortion... oh wait... that's it. And that's pretty sad. I do not think they are smart or capable enough as a whole to handle these other issues.

A Faithful Catholic


Terrence Berres said...

You appear to consider handling an issue to consist of putting forth documents on it. To take the clergy sexual abuse issue as an example, I consider handling to be more on the lines of solving and preventing.

Our Archdiocese and others are now reduced to attempting to defend lawsuits arising from that earlier era on the basis that those "thinking" bishops didn't fully understand how harmful it could be for minors to be sexually abused by priests. One prominent example was Archbishop Weakland, who went so far as to write "about some teens who were very street-wise and sexually very active. I may have given the impression that some teen-age victims of sexual abuse by a priest were somehow responsible. ... Again I talked in some interviews about teens being rejected and then 'squealing.'"

I will agree, though, that if the concern is When the Son of Man returns, will he find an air of sophistication on Earth, then Archbishop Weakland is the man for the job.

Jack said...

I'm not that in to Catholic bishops. But Weakland does appear really out of it on on the sex abuse scene but sophisticated as hell. TC and FC are both right. On JP2, FC is right. Catholicism=Anti-Abortion only. Jack

CatholicSoldier said...

Perish the thought, Catholic Bishops who are actually Catholic and articulate and agree with the Teachings of the Catholic Church.

You seem to think that's a bad thing F.C.?

Terrence Berres said...

Soldier, you mean something like this from Mater et Magistra?

"193. We must solemnly proclaim that human life is transmitted by means of the family, and the family is based upon a marriage which is one and indissoluble and, with respect to Christians, raised to the dignity of a sacrament. The transmission of human life is the result of a personal and conscious act, and, as such, is subject to the all-holy, inviolable and immutable laws of God, which no man may ignore or disobey. He is not therefore permitted to use certain ways and means which are allowable in the propagation of plant and animal life.

"194. Human life is sacred—all men must recognize that fact. From its very inception it reveals the creating hand of God. Those who violate His laws not only offend the divine majesty and degrade themselves and humanity, they also sap the vitality of the political community of which they are members."

You and the pope who wrote that seem to think these teachings are somehow connected to those on social justice. Probably why social justice gets approached on a high level of generality around here. That way the air of sophistication is never dispelled with declasse questions based on what some encyclical actually says.

Dad29 said...

...or what the Hell is the actual meaning of the term "social justice."

Getting a definition of that from the utterly sophisticated intellectualoids might be like pulling teeth from roosters.

There's no there there to pull...

Terrence Berres said...

"...what the Hell is the actual meaning of the term 'social justice."

As I recall, in 1990s it encompassed closing most of the inner city parishes and paying $450,000 to Mr. Marcoux. "Justice has many nuances[footnote omitted]." Economic Justice for All (1986) 39.

Anonymous said...

Years ago I heard the analysis that Paul VI appointed conservative bishops but he also appointed progressive bishops and moderate bishops and that diversity created a vitality which afforded dialogue and exchange of ideas among them.
Whereas, John Paul II "only" conservative men as bishops with the observable result.

Terrence Berres said...

Well, Anonymous, F.C. talked in terms of the air of sophistication surrounding the homilies and documents of an earlier generation of bishops. I note the contemporaneous decline in Mass attendance and the closing of schools and parishes and seminaries. These aren't the observable results of "vitality" as usually understood.

Anonymous said...


Terrence Berres said...

Chronologically, here's U.S. priestly ordinations:
1965: 994
1975: 771
1985: 533
1995: 511
2000: 442
2005: 454
2008: 480
--Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA) 2008