The Pope Francis Effect
I don't like the terms conservative and liberal when speaking of Catholics. I prefer orthodox and heterodox. But I guess you run into a third category because the orthodox can be split into the orthodox who prefer the traditional Latin Mass vs. the orthodox who prefer the novus ordo or are equally comfortable in either setting.
It does seem these days, though, that those who love the traditional Mass are under major assault. And, frankly, I get pretty sick of the nasty remarks on Catholic blogs about "rad trads" and other disparaging comments about my sisters and brothers who prefer the Latin Mass. What's wrong with that? I generally attend the novus ordo, but also attend an annual Ignatian retreat led by a priest from the Fraternal Society of St. Peter. I love the retreat: the silence, the reverence! What a break from the social hall setting after the novus ordo Mass in my little country parish. (However, the Mass itself is always reverent.)
I find it unsettling to feel like we are living the Chinese curse of "interesting times" since Pope
Francis mounted the papal throne. He seems like a "people's pope," but at the same time some of the people (i.e., orthodox Catholics) seem to be getting the rod, while others (liberal Catholics, liberation theologians, Protestants, etc.) are getting the gentleness. Are some of the sheep smellier than others? I wonder what St. Paul would think.
"Shall I come to you with a rod or with love in a spirit of gentleness?" 1 Cor. 4:21