When will my Church feel like ‘home’ once more?

Michael nails it again!

Here’s a transcript of the video:

We’ve received quite a bit of email, and Facebook comments, the vast majority of it sympathetic, about the theme we stressed last week in a couple of Vortex episodes about the lack of tradition in the Church these days.

Meaning of course the ignoring or downplaying or marginalizing of Catholic tradition – small T tradition.

And there is a host of things which used to be Catholic identity markers which just no longer are.

An easy comparison popped to mind recently continuing along this theme.

If we think of the Church as like a house – a powerful structure built upon a solid foundation and none of that changes – CAN’T change in fact – that’s a good start.

Now … let’s assume some in the house want to change some things around. So they start by rearranging the furniture a little bit here and little bit there. Nice change of pace you say to yourself.

Then they go a little further and toss out some of the furniture and get new stuff – doesn’t exactly match the old wallpaper and paint, but hey, we can live with it for a while right?

But, the carpeting needs to go. And while we’re at it – might as well get some new paint up there and how about some new drapery as well.

Of course, things have changed quite a bit as far as style since the last time we did this – new types of couches and chairs, they don’t quite fit in the old configuration – SOOO, let’s move that wall a few feet back.

But of course, that means the room on the other side of the wall also needs some fix up now.

So here’s the question – at what point does the house stop feeling like the old house and start feeling like a new one?

It is of course the SAME house, but what about when it no longer FEELS like the same house – doesn’t how someone FEELS in a house count for something, anything?

This is where many people are in regards to the state of affairs in the Church today … it just doesn’t FEEL very Catholic anymore.

The songs are different, the artwork is miserable, the space doesn’t even feel like it’s designed to worship God, many of the actions are different – the list is virtually endless.

At some point, while the address remains the same – the house itself just doesn’t feel like the comfortable home it used to be.

And maybe that’s the distinction – all the modifications and rearranging of furniture and fresh paint and new drapes and so forth, all of that may make it LOOK like a new and freshly updated house, but the house just doesn’t FEEL like home.

The Church is our home, not just a house – and this extremely important point is what seems to be missed by so many many blasé lukewarm Mass going Catholics and priests and bishops these days.

There are lots of Catholics who want their HOME back. They want the familiar smell of incense, the glow of candles and the gentle gaze of a Sacred Heart statue – not deafening chatter, off-key electric guitars tuning up and an almost total absence of the sacred.


 Father Ray Blake has a good post on this theme.

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12 Responses to When will my Church feel like ‘home’ once more?

  1. Frere Rabit says:

    First, I must say that I watch and admire Michael Voris and find him eminently worthy of satirical humour, which is the ultimate accolade for someone who is an effective communicator and has developed a recognised style. One of Rabit’s Michael Voris “episodes” can be seen here… http://brotherlapin.wordpress.com/2013/06/28/vatican-equine-scandal (Where flies and falsehoods are exposed.)

    However, as much as Michael Voris normally holds my attention and provides some thoughtful reflection on modernising trends that we should beware of, this “moving the furniture” video is quite different. Tradition is dynamic. The old sofa with the broken springs should be replaced. The faded wallpaper can be renewed in a different pattern and colour. The house will feel like home because the home is not dictated by the sofa and the wallpaper, but by the family in the home. I am concerned that the simple equation of social conservatism and tradition here falls well short of a Catholic understanding of tradition.


  2. Giovanni A. Cattaneo says:

    Mr. Rabbit nobody is perfect and though I understand what it is that you are trying to say, I would consider the target audience that Mr. Voris is trying to reach. They need an example they can relate to, not a perfect one.

    As Father Z is fund of saying, “never let the perfect be enemy of the good.”


  3. Toad says:

    Toad, read and agreed, as usual, with Rabit.
    And was reminded of one Roger’s traditional heroes, Churchill, who – when told a certain course of action would be, “…against the traditions of the Royal Navy,” pointed out sharply that, “The traditions of the Royal Navy, Sir, are rum, sodomy and the lash.”
    which is to say – if indeed it even needed saying – that not all traditions are worth a monkey’s temporary flatulence.


  4. 000rjbennett says:

    Michael Voris is right. It doesn’t feel like home anymore – except on Sunday, when I can go to a local parish where the priests have the cardinal’s permission to celebrate the Traditional Latin Mass.


  5. kathleen says:

    It seems Michael Voris is being remarkably restrained in his above metaphor of the Catholic Church post Vatican II, to changing the furniture around in a house, if we compare it to Malachi Martin’s forceful description!

    Martin described the changes as a hurricane sweeping through and whirling everything around, leaving destruction and turmoil in its path! The worst part of it all though was not this, for an outraged people would have set to repair the damage and try to put the whole thing back together again. No, the worst part of it all, says Martin, was how everyone was so pleased about the wreckage, smiling to each other and exclaiming, “How wonderful this is!”

    Personally I think Martin’s description is an exaggeration, for the basics of the Deposit of Faith (doctrine and dogma), and the Church’s teachings on Faith and Morals, have never changed, and never will. But those who knew the Church before VII often admit they can hardly recognise their beloved old ‘home’ anymore…. So much of the ‘furniture’ has been changed around.

    Thanks to our dear Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, much was done to start the rebuilding again all these years later. I believe the many new traditional groups, both religious and secular, plus events like the annual pilgrimage to Holy Chartres at Pentecost, with the thousands of young pilgrims strongly attached to Latin and a really beautiful liturgy at Holy Mass, traditional piety, love of Our Blessed Lady, etc. is a great sign of hope that ‘re-builders’ are well at work!
    Let us hope and pray nothing gets in the way of it continuing.


  6. mmvc says:

    Indeed Kathleen. Fr Z has often said that the ‘reform of the reform’ needs to take place from the bottom upwards.


  7. Toad says:

    Quitting the venerable practice of disembowelling and roasting heretics was the thin end of the wedge.
    I’m sure Michael Voris agrees.
    Things were never the same from then on.
    Downhill all the way.
    We discard the old traditions at our peril.


  8. kathleen says:

    Trust you Toad to get it wrong!
    The “disembowelling” (plus hanging, drawing and quartering) was the cruel and violent practice of the Protestants in England, Wales and Ireland for a certain time, to well over 1.000 faithful Catholics. (Most of the murders of Catholics in Ireland never got onto any official list.)

    The “roasting” (burning at the stake) was practiced for only a very short period – during the reign of Queen Mary Tudor – by Catholics to just over 200 hardened Protestants.
    Unjustifiable just the same. Even those on the right side can still commit evil deeds…. ( e.g. Remember the fire bombing of the civilian population of Dresden by the Allies in WW2 ?)

    None of these horrific forms of execution can be classed as “traditions“. They don’t go back to the beginning of Christianity in UK and Ireland, or other countries either.

    Back to school for Toad! 😦


  9. Toad says:

    Can you see no further than Britain, then Kathleen? There’s a whole big world out there, you know – France, Spain, Bosnia, etc .
    However it’s unwise, on your part, I diffidently suggest, to try and justify the hideous excesses of religious horrors perpetrated by one mob on another since the whole sordid panto of “civilisation” began.
    Just makes it all look even worse.
    And I’m not for a moment suggesting Catholics are the worst. Too close to call, I think.

    But the Hell with the lot of them, we surely all agree.

    No? Oh, well. (Insert Smiley face.)


  10. Toad says:

    “The “roasting” (burning at the stake) was practiced for only a very short period – during the reign of Queen Mary Tudor – by Catholics to just over 200 hardened Protestants.”

    Well, that will happen when you over-cook ’em.


  11. kathleen says:

    I am not trying to justify Catholics’ sins in any way, Toad; I pointedly said that the executions on one side and the other in England for religious reasons only happened “for a time“. Although the Penal Laws and persecution of the derogatorily called ‘papists’ that stretched over almost two centuries must have seemed eternal to those poor besieged Catholics! (It’s common knowledge that Catholics were certainly more the victims than the perpetrators of this religious intolerance.)
    But it is precisely because all men are sinners that everyone is in need of constantly begging God’s mercy and forgiveness for their many sins past and present… Catholics no less than anyone else.

    Of course, if you were referring to worldwide religious persecution, other countries have other sad tales to tell. In many it would seem it was almost a “tradition”, going back many years anyway, to aim this religious intolerance against Christians. Three out of every four cases of religious persecution in the world these days is aimed at defenseless Christians (Catholic, Orthodox and Protestants).


  12. Toad says:

    Agreed Kathleen. It might be unwise to dump all traditions, Modernists though we are, to a man (though not necessarily a woman.).

    “In many it would seem it was almost a “tradition”, going back many years anyway, to aim this religious intolerance against Christians.”
    Unarguable, though I was thinking more of the traditional hatred between Catholics and Protestants, in Ireland and France, during which in the latter, the great Montaigne remarked, “It seems a little extreme to roast a man over a difference of opinion.”

    “Of course, if you were referring to worldwide religious persecution…”
    Yes, well it is after all, the Catholic church.

    And I find most things tend to happen “..for a time.”
    But for how long, who knows?


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