That foreign man, St George

When asked to celebrate the conventual Mass today, St George’s day, I was a little conflicted. For our patron, St Edmund King and Martyr (†869/70), was the original patron of England, St George only being established in that role in 1348. In recent years there have been petitions to the government to restore St Edmund as English patron, to no avail. For not a few among the English, St Edmund is still the rightful patron.

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Amoris Laetitia: All things to all?

Most of us have probably read a great deal of commentary on Amoris Laetitia (AL). Some commentaries are laudatory, some condemnatory, some nod to its weaknesses but strive hard to extol its virtues, some ignore its virtues and seek to expose an alleged wolf in sheep’s clothing. When the dust settles what will we find?

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Did you notice?

What with all the talk the last few days about Amoris Laetitia, we might have missed seeing, or if seeing, missed the significance of, a brief note on the Lefebvrist Society of St Pius X (SSPX). It was published in La Croix, and picked up by the Rorate Caeli blog. I quote it below:
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A glaring omission

In my haste and weariness, manifestations of the frail flesh of my humanity which cancels out all guilt, I omitted one commentator from my list in the previous post on the divided opinion in the wake of Amoris Laetitia. You will find it a bracing digestivo that will help remedy any mental gastric reflux from so much heavy intellectual food.

It is from a source close to Eccleston Square. Bruvver Eccles no less. Click his official portrait below and read on, and guffaw and snort with consideration for others. His opinions are not necessarily my own, etc etc. Amen.

new-eccles-biretta

 

Divided Opinions on Amoris Laetitia

There is a lot of comment on the papal exhortation. It is a little overwhelming. But some you may want to read are listed here. A reader here, sentenil, suggests the following from very reputable writers:

Robert Royal — Beautiful, Moving and Divisive
Fr James Schall SJ — Who is Admonishing Whom?
Carl Olson — Francis’ Sprawling Exhortation
Ed Peters — First Thoughts

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Amoris Laetitia: a work of many hands

Amoris Laetitia: a work of many hands

It is accomplished. Amoris Laetitia (hereafter AL) has been read from go to whoa. It was a bit of a slog at times. There are moments of golden lucidity and crystal clarity, with flashes of insight and inspiration. There are moments of ambiguity and the avoidance of plain speaking. There a stretches where the subject seems laboured, over-worked and even, at times, uneccessary.  There are moments when one thinks when is reading the words of an earthy parish priest rather than the magisterial teaching of a sovereign pontiff to the Church and the world.

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Amoris Laetitia: I’m not yet dead from shock

Well, it has been hard to get a lot of clear space to read the apostolic exhortation, but I am over a third the way through it. As yet, I’ve suffered no paroxysms or cataclysms. It is rather good in parts. There are a couple of parts pregnant with ambiguity, and I have not yet got to the controversial stuff. There is at least one missed opportunity.

As the Holy Father himself suggested, I am reading this with care and attention, and without rushing. Hopefully tomorrow afternoon I will be in a position to offer comment on it. Many commentators will already have put their oars in the choppy waters, but I shall refrain from reading them for now. Dr Stephen Bullivant’s generously-sized news bite is all I have allowed to intrude so far, other glancing at the secular media headlines proclaiming Francis is saying yes to everyone but homosexuals. But we all know they have their own agenda to pursue. Please do not let the secular media provide your commentary on this document. The Tablet‘s headline is just as mischievous, having a different, though related, agenda.

If I offer anything tomorrow, it will not be a systematic commentary but some reactions and observations, especially on points that some may likely have glossed over. However, so far no foundations have been rocked.

If you have, or have seen, any strong reactions from the Catholic world please do let me know of them. I won’t read them till I have finished the document, but they might serve as good measures for my/our own reactions.

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Photo: Catholic News Agency (CNA)

Oh, yes. I have changed the design of this blog. The near collision of post titles with their dates in the headings in the previous theme was beyond my control and driving me potty (-er). It was time to move on. Best to minimise annoyances!