Rerum Pius Tenax Vigor....
Or What is Wrong With This Picture?
All of us want to be something that we are not. And sometimes we want to be something we once were. I have always admired the Society of St. Pius X, even to this day. I so wish that I can be so sure of what I believe that I can be just as nasty as they are to those who disagree with them (at least rhetorically). True, I was like that once, but very briefly (I wasn't tough enough, I guess). I saw that things are not so black and white, I saw that maybe God does write straight with crooked lines. Just as, however, we can admire someone very small and very drunk audaciously picking a bar fight with a large biker, so I admire the SSPX for entering into doctrinal issues where they put their historical foot in their theological mouth.
"Theology by knee-jerk"..... no wait, just thinking by knee-jerk. Such is the article that I perused of the complementary copy of the Angelus Magazine that they sent me (I ordered one of their nice calendars). Unfortunately, only part of it is available on-line. They covered all of the bases in this one: a virtual defense of slavery, a defense of the medieval social order, condemnation of liberalism, etc. What really caught my eye, however, was one particular quote. The setting is the deposed ex-president of the Confederate States, Jefferson Davis, in prison receiving a photograph from Pope Pius IX :
During President Davis's imprisonment following the defeat of the Confederacy, Pope Pius IX sent a picture of himself to him with the handwritten inscription: "Come unto me all ye who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest." (emphasis mine)
-from the June 2005 edition of the Angelus Magazine, p. 34
Wow! John Paul II, eat your heart out! The Vicar of Christ becomes Christ's usurper. Not just the guide of the Church, but God himself, the source of all solace and comfort!
Maybe I shouldn't be so hard on Pio Nono. He is, after all, lying incorrupt in Rome in the Basilica of St. Lawrence Outside the Walls. Compared to this identification of the Sovereign Pontiff with Christ Himself, however, what is changing the Mass, calling ecumenical councils to alter the face of the Church, and defining doctrine infallibly for all time? Just some things you do before breakfast!
And if the Pope is indeed so on parallel with Christ, why not say any Mass that he pleases, even if he asks you to consecrate a chocolate chip cookie using the words of a Beastie Boys' song?
Indeed, life can be very ironic sometimes.