Monday, January 15, 2007

More Catholic Indifferentism

Amy Welborn, in this post on the recent interview with Abp. Wuerl over the Pelosi I Cor. 11 Tour, puts her finger on the real issue:

If this woman, engaged in a public role, very publicly works against the teachings of the Church to which she professes a very public tie isn't publicly challenged by even one of the primary teachers of the Church - the bishops - the rest of us - lay Catholics, living and working in the world, every day facing decisions on how to be faithful disciples of Jesus in the midst of the complexities of our professions, some of us who really suffer because of the things they refuse to do because of their fidelity to Christ - we get a message.

And the message we get is that - it doesn't matter. Do whatever you want. Catholicism isn't about discipleship, about (among other things) living in the truth that every person God chooses to create - from conception to natural death - is our treasured brother or sister - I'm not sure what it's about, but it evidently isn't about that.

This indifferentism has been eating away at me for the last few years as a Catholic from a different angle -- the growing sense that what I believe doesn't even make much of a difference in my own life; that while right belief might make for right voting, it doesn't have much impact on right living.

At Mass yesterday, we were confronted with a priest (the pastor) who exuded indifferentism -- his liturgical style was 100% colloquial and banal -- his homily peppered with "Anyway.." and "such and such..." He might as well have threw in a few "whatever"s. He'd interrupt Mass with silly announcements and ad libs. The message is clear, whether he intended it or not -- none of this liturgy stuff really matters. I looked around at the faces and body postures and it was pretty obvious that though many were trying to resist the underlying message, it was getting through very loud and clear. Eventually the people will buy it and the people will wilt. And then so does the Faith. That sums up to me why Pentecostalism is winning.

Wuerl should know better than to think this is just about politics.