Iniquitas radix malorum? Too Bad, Conservatives

Another tough year on the horizon for Catholic conservatives. The pope tweets in Latin, no less, and suddenly, the Right is full of chickens-with-heads-cut-off littles, wringing hands and pouting on the front porch. David Gibson “analyzes” here.

Joe Carter offers a counterpoint:

Hate and apathy are the roots of social evil.

I can work with that. And I’m sure the pope can too.

I hear an awful lot of hate coming from the Right … for the past fifteen years. What’s up this week: waterboarding as baptism? I don’t think conservatives are all that anxious to come down moral on hate and apathy, unless they’re on the receiving end of it.

Hate and apathy are, in fact, part of the inequalities of the modern West. Competing Christians whipped up the hate for decades after the Reformation. And Europe was plunged into centuries of war, rumors of war, and aristocratic-driven p***ing matches between rivals. The aristocracy paid the price, certainly, with inbreeding. But we know who was on the front lines in battle, in factories, and on the margins of society. Catholic saints sure as heck knew. That’s why they were saints. They sided with those on the up end of the see-saw of Western culture. Nobody from the Acton Institute will ever get a santo eventualito.

Gibson on the cons:

One reason is that Catholic conservatives were already on edge after trying to sort out what exactly Francis said to an Argentine woman he called to discuss her irregular marital situation and whether she could receive Communion. It seemed the pope told her she could, and many worried that this sent the wrong signal, and that Francis should stop communicating so casually via cold calls and social media.

Maybe it’s time for disaffected Catholics to consider the basics of self-examination, sin, and repentance. Instead of thinking the worst of a bothersome communication, we are obliged by CCC 2478 to think the best of it. And make more than an apathetic effort to put a good spin on it.

Hmm, the Holy Father is not advocating a return of the Soviet state. The context is the Gospel. So it is incumbent on the sincere believer to turn away from hate and apathy, and get active in the realm of the world. If you’re going to make a case for hate and apathy instead of inequality, somebody’s going to have to get out of the ivory tower and off the computer.

Mr Gibson sums:

Francis was back at it again on Tuesday, though this time on what is presumably safer ground: original sin.

“Who among us can presume to be free of sin?” the pope wrote in under 140 characters. “No one. Let us ask God to forgive our sins.”

Anybody got a problem with that one?

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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