Monday, November 18, 2002

Why I get frustrated with those to my right

Following up on the previous post, I want to explain why I tend to get so frustrated (and occasionally uncharitable) with my fellow Catholics who seek orthodoxy, but differ with me over things like Vatican II and JPII.

Essentially, my frustration lies in the fact that both "neo-Catholics" and "RadTrads" seek orthodoxy, that is, we all seek the truth of divine revelation, in its fullness, but those to my right seem to deny my own orthodoxy, or at least hold it in suspicion (they may not necessarily do so literally to me, but to those theological opinions with which I agree). Mr. Sungenis' questioning of the term "liberal orthodox" is a case in point. What I meant by it is this: the Church gives theologians a certain degree of latitude on a number of issues. Within that range, one can legitimately and rightly be called "orthodox". But how to distinguish views within that range? I do so by referring to some within that range as "liberal orthodox" and others as "conservative orthodox". Personally, I tend towards the latter, but am not so across the board (i.e. on every theological question which is open for disagreement).

What worries me is that the "traditional Catholic" crowd does not recognize this, or better, does not acknowledge it, at least in my reading. This means that the orthodoxy of those who disagree with them is suspect; that is, at least, my personal experience. And I react strongly when the term heterodox is applied to myself or to those views which I hold. Because it is the Truth that will set me free, and so it is the Truth which I yearn for and desire.

Hope this makes some sense.

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