Thursday, February 16, 2006

Effeminate Christianity and anger

Our age has succumbed to a cult of softness. It is fashionable to believe that any display of anger is due to a lack of charity or to some psychological problem. This cult of softness has, in turn, contributed much to an effeminate Christianity which is incapable of opposing the evils of our present epoch.

It is forgotten that sometimes anger is the proper response to value. In the words of Fr. Bede Jarrett, O.P., "Not only may I sin by being angry when I should not, but I may sin by not being angry when I should be. If my reason tells me that it is right to be angry, then I disobey God when I refuse to give place to wrath; for, as the New Testament teaches, it is possible to "be angry and sin not" (Ephesians 4:26). Our Lord Himself, when need arose, roped together a bundle of cords and drove from the Temple those who trafficked in the House of Prayer, and down the front steps He flung the tables of the money-changers. Perhaps for most of us, the fault is not that we are too angry, but that we are not angry enough. Think of the evils that are in the world, that are known to all, admitted to exist by public press and on public platform. Would they have survived thus far, had folk all shown the indignant anger of Christ? Hypocrisy, cant, and the whole blatant injustice that stalks naked and unashamed in national life - may not our own weakness and silence have helped to render impotent all efforts to reduce these terrible things?....I have got to make myself realize that anger is itself neither evil nor good, and that it can be either. Hence I must pledge myself to see how far I allow anger to rule me when it should not, and how far I overrule it when I should give it a free hand." (Classic Catholic Meditations, p. 168, Sophia Institute Press).

All too many Catholics refuse to give vent to a righteous anger which opposes the myriad evils of our time. At the same time, these confused souls will be found engaging in road rage and flipping off the driver in the next lane or becoming impatient with the cashier at their local fast-food restaurant.

I am always amazed at how Catholics can get so worked up over trivial matters and sink into the morass of unholy anger while refusing to become indignant over the very idea of babies being slaughtered in the womb or government trying to redefine marriage so that homosexual "couples" can receive societal recognition of their perversion.

In a word, it's schizophrenic.



Lisa said...

When I would write my Bishop (and always respectfully) about various dissent groups in the Diocese, he would inevitably accuse me of being "angry" just because I pointed out the problem. I found his attitude to be somewhat offensive. Even if I had been angry (and I was not) there is, as you say, a righteous anger.

Too often Bishops have used this as an excuse to wash their hands of a problem. I read that a Catholic nun approached Bishop McCormack (when he was still serving in the Archdiocese of Boston) some 100 times about cases of children being abused. Each time, nothing was done. Maybe Bishop McCormack thought this nun was "too angry" as well?

Dave said...

Right on...hahaha. Our society has a warped sense of priorities. Petty things are magnified and people ignore the really big issues. If you're more outraged over lobsters being boiled than over innocent babies being aborted, you need help.

Marie said...

I have complained to His Excellency, The Most Rev. John B. McCormack, about VOTF in the past. I explained carefully and calmly why I believe this group dissents from Church teaching and how several Bishops have called the organization "anti-Catholic."

Bishop McCormack wrote me back and suggested that my tone was angry.

Apparently any conviction, no matter how calmly or charitably put, will be classified as "anger" by the Bishop.

So my experiences have been very similar to those of Lisa's.

Bishop McCormack continues to allow VOTF in the Diocese and has even appointed a diocesan liason to the group.

Charles Bemmer said...

At my parish, the priest is more concerned about putting an end to smoking than he is about the evils of abortion, contraception, fornication and homosexuality.

All we hear is "Peace and Justice" issues. Never anything about the reality of sin and its consequences. Especially Hell.

Marie Cecile said...

Dear Paul,

Anger is never good when it is for the wrong. All too often we fight for a wrong, over looking the right. It seems we go after what will bring a desired result, that would please us more than what would be for the Greater Good of God. Maybe we should all try putting our feet in God's shoes for a change and see what he sees. We are promoting death and we don't realize it. We have become a world of I want this now, to heck with the Truth about God and his Divine Plan. If I am wrong I will be the first to admit my error. Abortion, homosexuality, euthanasia are an end to life, we continue on this we will destroy ourselves from all life as we know it.

God Love you with a smile in your heart,

Marie Cecile

Paul Anthony Melanson said...

Thank you again Marie Cecile for your insights. Indeed, when we stray from God's Will for us, we turn away from authentic peace.

It was St. Augustine who said, "Our hearts are restless O Lord, until they rest in Thee."

That really says it all doesn't it?

Marie Cecile said...

Dear Paul,

Yes, Saint Augustine said it very well. We have no peace, no rest until it is with God we place ourselves in.

God Bless you with a smile in your heart,

Marie Cecile

Site Meter