Friday, June 22, 2007

Regarding Traditionalists

I have now had a little more experience actually being around Catholic Traditionalists. Before I entered the Church the only exposure I had to them were the Priests I had studied under or what I read on the blogosphere. A small few of them I've met fit the stereotype - cold and stodgy - but most of them are much warmer and inviting than given credit by those outside the niche.

On that note, its unfortunate that it is a niche at all. There is a huge amount of Christian love amongst these people. From the outside, I can tell you from experience, that coming into this culture can seem daunting. Perhaps it even seemed uninviting. The priests of the FSSP were the gateway for me. They were anything but cold and stodgy.

There are a few winks that go by regarding the new mass. That is undeniable. But if you've never been around a community like this you might be surprised how few there are. I have even met some who have never seen a new mass, let alone criticize it. I was unaware that people like that even existed. They tell stories of mass in hotel rooms which put me at a loss for words. Its almost like instead of submitting to the craziness go on around them (or enduring it), they decided to place themselves and their children in a protective bubble and come out later when it was safe. Groups like the FSSP have made it safe again. It is true that going into the bubble put them on the fine line of schism and full communion. I'm not them but I imagine they are pleased to now have a parish, a bishop who approves, etc.

There is a truism that appears to guide the traditionalist mindset. This is just my small opinion of course, as green as it is. The truism goes something like this: "Christ is true, his Church is true, so why mess with it?" Of course this topic is much larger than my pea brain can get around, so I'm going to stop right here.

But it is quite obvious that I love my FSSP parish and the people are quickly growing on me. They are wonderfully, humbly, and truly Catholic - and thats a beautiful thing.

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"The whole truth is generally the ally of virtue; a half-truth is always the ally of some vice." - G.K. Chesterton