Thursday, January 5, 2012

Using the Catholic Name

Like many of you, when I heard that the Archdiocese of Detroit told Michael Voris to stop using the word Catholic in his videos, I thought, "Really?  A bishop goes after him?  What about the Kennedys, Kerry, Biden, Pelosi, Sibelius..."  And since I use Catholic in my blog name, could this happen to me?  (Ever self-centered, don't you know.)

At my core I'm a Catholic.  I'm a mom, wife, sister, daughter, teacher, friend, cook, writer...  But coloring and lifting up all of that is my Catholic faith.

I have watched many episodes of the Vortex by Voris.  His style can be a bit annoying, and his hair is rivaled only by Tedd Kopple and Donald Trump.  But he is clearly a Catholic, and trying to do his best to share the orthodox faith as he understands it.  He's more Catholic than some of the lay people who have served as parish ministers or even spiritual directors. 

He's also very critical of pastors, bishops and clergy when they don't stand up against the powerful for the church.  Coming into an election year of such great importance, we need our clergy to exercise free speech and protect our freedom of conscience.  I was looking forward to Michael Voris being a voice for those who need it now.  (I was also hoping he would buy a comb and get a haircut.)

If Iowa is any indication, a real Catholic, Rick Santorum, has a chance to be our president.  If that happens, and I know it's a big if, people like Voris and I may have less to rant about.  But why would a bishop go after Voris?

The answer has to be his criticism of the bishops.  I have sometimes wanted to show a Vortex episode to my son, but it was too critical of the clergy for me to do so.  I want him to respect our priests.  But maybe, he's getting old enough that he could understand that some bishops and priests have really failed the faithful.

Phillip Lawler's The Faithful Departed showed us the dirty underbelly of a chancery that was far more interest in political favors than Catholic faith.  If Santorum becomes president, I don't think he'll be listening to Jesuit dissidents like the Kennedys did.  He'll probably rub some of the old guard bishops the wrong way.  I hope he isn't told to go light on his faith.  He hasn't done so yet.    But would a bishop ever tell him to not use the name Catholic in referring to himself?  No one has done that to a Kennedy, Pelosi, or Biden, but if a bishop tells Michael Voris he  can't call his show Catholic, who knows?
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