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Jul 31, 2022Liked by Steve Skojec

These men have so corrupted what God has given that I honestly believe we are at a point where it may just all have to die a very necessary death.

I think of how in the gospel of John Jesus heard his friend was dying and, instead of going right to him waited for three days, only leaving after his friend had died.

I think of this a lot now. I think of it a lot.

All I can do now is be faithful as I am able & hope for the resurrection. 

F%#@ you & God bless.

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Every time you close with that, I actually LOL. Every damn time.

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As someone outside but drawn to the church (I've attended weekly for several years now but haven't joined) this is all so terribly depressing. I'm not even a trad in any majorly meaningful sense, and I think I've been to a TLM twice, but I want no part of a church that has no place for its history.

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Have you looked into Orthodoxy? I am a cradle catholic and ex semi-trad and have found great peace in Orthodoxy. It just seems more theological balanced.

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I don't live in a part of the country where Orthodox Christianity has really any presence to speak of (I live in Utah, and not by SLC), so truthfully I'm aware of Orthodoxy but haven't much looked into it. I grew up around Catholicism in AZ, where I know there are plenty of Orthodox too but I wasn't looking at the time.

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That’s unfortunate. Well, if you do end up moving, or if you stay there, keep your eye out in case they do open a church near you.

The last thing I’ll say about it is this, when I attended my first orthodox Divine Liturgy I felt as if I just encountered the early church (i’ve been going to an orthodox church now consistently for a few months and this feeling hasn’t worn off). Never once at a Catholic Church did I get a feeling of connection to the early church.

God bless.

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Jul 31, 2022Liked by Steve Skojec

My lord Steve. This is exactly what I have been try to say on Reddit for the better part of a year now, but you said it far better than I ever could. I just kept reading and nodding the entire post.

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Steve and fellow readers, I ask this in good faith, not in an effort to invite an argument. I am sincerely interested in learning--especially given where you are at the moment; that is, not ideologically committed--whether the state of things as you describe them ever causes you to wonder if Jerusalem, Alexandria, Antioch, and Byzantium weren't in the right during the unfolding of the Great Schism. If not, I am sincerely interested in hearing your thoughts. What is your most compelling case for maintaining you historical view of the schism, especially as someone who is no longer a committed Roman Catholic? I totally understand if the question doesn't interest you at the moment or if the question seems not to point toward the validity of any side of the schism in this moment. If you find it worth responding to, I promise not to respond with any arguments.

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That's such a good question. I really need to look into the Schism deeply and as objectively as I can. I have no animus towards the EO Churches, in fact I respect them quite a bit. For me it's always an authority problem, even if you removed the dreaded Roman Church, the Orthodox Churches would still have arguments and seemingly no way to solve them. I don't know who the umpire is in this baseball game. Who gets to interpret the strike zone? Even more, I'm afraid that if the same scrutiny were applied to the East I am sure I would find devils there too. There is no Christian Church on this Earth that I trust anymore, my faith in general is paper thin.

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Thanks for your response Anthony.

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Hi Steve, it serously wounds me to see you despair of the church and leave it. You asked in a previous post if God really exists. If there is one miracle, would that change your mind? Then let me note the eucharistic miracle of Buenos Aires a few years ago. It was presented to top physicians and they scoffed. Then the presenter said: "These findings of this being living heart tissue were validated by 3 labs of the most prestigious attendants of this event!" And no one could argue with that. God exists and is constantly reminding us...if we pay attention.

As for "they're all Judases", I won't argue that most of the church hierarchy are incurably corrupt. But this isn't unprecedented. The daily readings over this past week are from Jeremiah, and in those days the situation was identical. All of the prophets, princes, and kings were completely corrupt. God asked for their repentance, and didn't get it. So God guided Nebuchadnezzar to wipe them out, with the promise that he would bring them back in 70 years. Perhaps this is where we are.

But did that mean that God disappeared, or doesn't exist? No!

Yes, we are due for an ugly reckoning. I'm not looking forward to it. But His justice demands it. I will pray for mercy, but I will not abandon my faith in Him! Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us! Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!

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I am confused as to what your argument is exactly. You say:

"those same theologians will also concede that the pope IS the Supreme Legislator of the Church, and so his decisions on matters of discipline and governance like liturgy, while "prudential," still have the force of law, even when NOT infallible. So suck it up buttercup. Take your Christian gaslighting like a man."

But to the extent that anyone has authority over anything, is this not more or less the case? I mean in human law, parental authority, or in religion if such an authority exists. To say that X has authority to make laws does not mean that X will always make good laws. Catholics would say the same thing about the Pope. That doesn't make this "gaslighting." It is unjust and problematic sure, but how is that a theological death blow to Catholicism?

You may say something along the lines of "if God put these bad leaders in charge, he is unjust." In other words, you may attempt to build a version of the problem of evil based on this particular charge (a problem of evil directed against the God of Catholicism in particular). But this seems weak to me. I agree that the problem of evil is a serious problem for those who believe in a benevolent God. I also think that putting the Church in the hands of bad leaders is an example of an evil in the world. That said, I fail to see how this is a particularly compelling argument? I mean in a world with childhood cancer, the fact that God allowed a Pope to reign for several years who doesn't like a particular form of liturgy doesn't exactly seem that big of a deal in the scheme of things.

Maybe I am missing something here, so I am open to discussion, I just don't see the point.

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Steve , I am living this in the here and now . I am a Parishioner at Basilica of Saint Mary in Alexandria VA. As of July no more Third Friday Latin Mass . I am heartbroken. Thanks be to God for now , nearby Saint Rita can continue Latin Mass. Nevertheless, I think this is a portend of more perverse things to come as the Western World is rapidly turning its ontological world view on its head. What was once evil is good and what was considered good is now evil. Up until Francis became Pope I never doubted that my church would stand rock solid for basic held Christian truths . Now I am not so sure, as it seems a disease of the soul has infected in those in power within my Church Militant , those with power have been corrupted by Satan . They have forgotten Jesus. May God have Mercy on us all. Pray for my Bishop that he may know wisdom and humility and moral courage. I see a great trial ahead .

No expletive, just God Bless.

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TC has left me struggling to believe as a Catholic. How can the form of the mass that had essentially been used for centuries now be de facto illicit?

I knew this was coming when TC dropped. Simply banning the TLM outright wouldn’t have been good strategy. It would justify the very faithful it was weaponized against, while potentially generating sympathy for them in other quarters. Instead, the powers that be decided to slowly euthanize it, bit by bit. That’s why now, in so many places, you have to do your TLM in a gym or a broom closet—if you can even do it at all.

Meanwhile, plenty of good-hearted, glass-is-half-full Catholics wring their hands and play bizarre logic games to deny the evidence of their eyes and ears. They so desperately want to say that what's happening isn’t actually happening that they'll buy any explanation, no matter how absurd.

For myself at least, TC hit my faith like an uppercut to the jaw. I’m reeling from it. And I believe that was the intended effect on target.

If I decide I can’t take it anymore and walk away, “they” win. The Church has one less guy bitterly clinging to the last vestiges of traditional (dare I say, authentic?) Catholicism. If I suck it up and keep going, I tacitly concede the pope has carte blanche to do what he wants with the liturgy. It’s heads they win, tails I lose.

All of this is especially painful for me because the TLM was the lifeline that pulled me through a dark time in my life with my faith intact. Now I’m not one of those people who even goes to the TLM every Sunday, or gets hot and bothered if women show up in pants. But there is a tangible reverence and beauty to the TLM that is utterly... raw. Its light shone through at a very dark time in my life, and for that I will always be grateful.

The audacity to think anyone has the right to take that away from us is beyond me.

Anyway, please don’t stop writing about this, Steve. At least not as long as it still matters to you. Your words give voice to the deep pain in my heart.

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Steve, I think you have every right to be mad at the hierarchy of the Church for all of this, especially with the years of your life that you gave to it, but when I read you I can’t help but think of GK Chesterton or maybe CS Lewis quote “I was mad at God for not existing”. Scripture is obviously one of the most important parts of the deposit of faith, our inheritance and it warns us constantly of exactly what we are seeing, people change constantly, I’ve thankfully changed a lot since even last week, so it wasn’t surprising to God that people rebel, so why should it surprise us? It makes me mad, sure, but I’m not willing to stay away from my spiritual inheritance even if every apostle is a Judas, it means way to much to me, confession, the Eucharist, scripture, my family in the faith

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