Rorate Caeli

Can I be more than just a "keyboard Catholic"? Realistic Optimism, expecting the days ahead

Jules Breton
The blessing of the wheat fields in Artois (1857)
[Prayer, faithfulness, hard work, Tradition: Catholic life!]
Musée des Beaux-Arts, Arras


Excerpts of an article by Marco Bongi for Italian traditional Catholic website Riscossa Cristiana:

Of late many of my friends have asked me why my articles have noticeably been less frequent. Naturally there are everyday obligations with the subsequent difficulties in finding time to write. Frankly, though, I would be lying if I denied that a sort of frustration is also lying hidden away in my pen; a sort of heightened sadness, in having to follow continuously the daily events which are now composing a picture that is now clear and unambiguous - for those at least who are not afraid to look reality in the face and who strive as much as possible to be honest with themselves.
I honestly admire those who have the strength to follow with constancy and care the progress of the landslide, be it on the socio-political level or be it mainly in ecclesiastical circles. I read their lucid and documented articles regularly, and praise their courage and the patience of Job they manifest in reporting the advance of the avalanche.

However, I believe, that, sooner or later, it will be necessary in some way, to move from mere theory to practical action. Not that denouncing (especially if well-documented) is not useful. It certainly contributes to the creation of a cultural basis for coherent and well-structured action.

Yet culture, obviously along with prayer, has to be translated into something more concrete and here (forgive me) is the stumbling block which reveals clearly the character of the Italian traditionalist world. In short, we have, many (very welcome) “keyboard” or “conference” traditionalists who are rather less disposed to action, in organizing concrete initiatives along with being prepared to risk themselves completely.

Nevertheless, I think, the further we go ahead, there will be less likelihood of hiding oneself or looking for “Italian-style” compromises. In that regard, let me give some examples:

- Criticizing the homosexual lobby will be increasingly more difficult and risky. Nobody can hope to save a political, university, journalistic or ecclesiastical career if they decide to speak out with clarity about the Truth on these issues. Who is prepared to sacrifice everything for the sake of authentic moral Doctrine?

- The physician who is a “conscientious objector” on the questions of abortion, in-vitro fertilization, the use of embryonic stamina cells and euthanasia will be increasingly more exposed, and besides being marginalized professionally, will also risk sentences of condemnation. How many will be able to resist?

- Teachers who dare to oppose the new didactic orientation in matters of sexual “education” will, without doubt, have to face higher oppressive and constrictive orders. Will they have the character to combat them openly?

In all probability, this will be the future for the lay faithful, but a better fate is not in store for the clergy either. In fact it is quite evident, and only the most obtuse “all-is-normal men” can continue “clutching at straws” in order to sustain the opposite, that the Catholic Church has been taken over by a horde of wolves dressed as pastors in sheep’s clothing. ... It is of little importance where the motivations come from, but it is clearer than ever that fewer and fewer churchmen have the Faith. Holy Mother Church is certainly not dead, in fact that can never happen, as Her true essence will survive, with great difficulty, under the ruins of the persecutions.

In the end, this is the real motive that causes such visceral hatred against the few authentic Catholics who have the courage to denounce the present day deviations. Such hatred arises from the knowledge that the Bride of Christ, beyond all things, will continue to survive there, ready to be martyred and resolute against all the rest, in following the Only Way, Truth and Life.

I write all of this with obvious sorrow, but without pessimism. I simply want to show how urgent it has become, as each day passes, that we hold onto the Faith firmly and revive our prayer, but also that we organize solid resistance (a factor which is not always emphasized sufficiently), in view of certain counter-attack in the future.

[Translation and tip: Contributor Francesca Romana]