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Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Cardinal Dolan: Turning over a new leaf?

Cardinal Dolan: Synod should support, encourage, the 'new minority' of faithful Catholics

Well, there are a lot of leaves on a tree, but this "leaf" from the book of Cardinal Dolan gives me at least a little hope. The thought of turning over a new leaf reminds me of a story (maybe O. Henry) about a dying girl whose window looks out on brick wall with a tree in front of it that actually touched the wall with its branches. It's autumn and she's convinced that when the last leaf falls, she'll die. She watches the leaves drop and float to the ground one by one by one losing hope as she sees them fall. Finally, only one leaf is left on the tree. When that leaf falls, she knows she'll die.

In her apartment building lives an old man, a friend. He was a painter, but never a very successful one. He too is ill with a bad cold, but there's no doubt he'll recover. Only one day he gets much worse and eventually dies of complications from pneumonia. 

Meanwhile, the young woman finding hope in the fortitude of that last leaf, slowly begins to recover. When she's better she discovers that the painter, who loved her like a father, had gone out in the dark, the cold and the snow and painted a leaf on the wall of the building that, from her window, appeared to be attached to the tree's branch. She lived and he died out of love for her. What greater love than to give one's life for a friend.

I guess that's a digression, but let's hope that Cardinal Dolan isn't just turning over one new leaf, but an entire tree full.


newguy40 said...

Enjoyed your digression!

We'll see. I truly hope and pray for him. I had such high hopes for him when he was elevated.

Matthew 7:18
A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit.

Anonymous said...

His mother has said about him: What you see is what you get. That's always my first thought about Dolan. What his mother said.

That is my problem when it comes to trusting him. Is he shaped by his audience? By the frame he finds himself in. Traditional Dolan here; progressive Dolan there. Meet-The-Press Dolan there. Welcoming Dolan everywhere. A theological optical illusion: now he's a vase...oh oh, now he's two profiles. On-one-hand, on-the-other-hand theology given one-at-a-time: is it a vase or.....

A puzzling, complex man despite a surface persona that seems simple, happy and uncomplicated. Lots of layers we never get to see. We are only left with: what you see is what you get.

Mary Ann Kreitzer said...

I know what you mean about "high hopes." Me too. Well, we can continue to hope. After all, he's not dead yet.

Anonymous, I think he must have grown up in a family where he was a people pleaser. I knew someone in college like that. She always said exactly what she thought you wanted to hear. But you could never trust that what she said was true.

Anonymous said...

Leaves have a tendency to blow around in the wind.
That's what happens every FALL.............

Anonymous said...

He is a politician. Goes where the wind is that simple.

Aged parent said...

Having had this man as my Ordinary once upon a time I will have to agree with Anon@7:06: he is a politician. He is also quite cowardly in the face of evil.

Anonymous said...

Dolan's explanation about THAT letter

Anonymous said...

Remember how high our hopes were after he told us about how cowardly pastors failed to teach catholic truths. That was before leading the gay parade.

Catholic in Brooklyn said...

Did it ever occur to you that this is the way Cardinal Dolan has always felt? You get upset because he refuses to publicly condemn people. He has taken the attitude of mercy towards people, but like Pope Francis, that doesn't mean he condones their sin. The purpose of the Church is to bring souls to Christ. We aren't going to do that by hitting them over the head with a 2x4 all the time.

Here is a great quote by Cardinal Dolan:

"“And so Francis is reminding us, look, if we come across as some crabby, nay saying shrill, we’re not gonna win anybody. If we come across as a loving, embracing holy mother church who says, “Come on in. We love you. We need you. We want you. And once you get to know us, then maybe we can invite you to the conversion of heart that is at the core of the gospel. And then maybe we can talk about changing behavior. That’s a very effective pedagogy.”

Mary Ann - you and those who think like you never consider for even a moment that you could be wrong and that your judgments could be wrong.

I really love the words of Pope Francis from a homily of a couple of days ago:

“The key,” he continued, is “of the gratuity of salvation, of that knowledge”. The scholars of the Law took away the key of God’s free gift of salvation, because, as the Holy Father said, “they thought that by respecting all the commandments one could be saved, and anyone who didn’t do just that was condemned”. In this way, “they limited God’s horizons and made the love of God into something very, very small”, the Pope said.
. . .
Concluding, the Holy Father posed two questions: “Do I believe that the Lord saved me gratuitously, freely? Do I believe that I have done nothing to merit salvation?”. “Let us ask ourselves these questions,” the Pope said, “only in this way will we be faithful to this merciful love: the love of a father and a mother, because God also says He is like a mother with us; love, expanded horizons, without limits. And let us not be fooled by scholars [of the Law] who limit this love.”

Mary Ann, what do you think this verse means: "Go and learn what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.’ For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.” Matt. 9:13

Mary Ann Kreitzer said...

Tut-tut, Mary,

Aren't you talking about yourself when you write, "you and those who think like you never consider for even a moment that you could be wrong and that your judgments could be wrong." I've never seen a person disagree with you that you didn't go after with bared knuckles. So practice what you preach and exercise a little mercy instead of condemning me and "those who think like" me. Gosh, why does this remind me of bigots who talk about "THOSE people?"

By the way, have you been listening to the Mass readings the past week? Look up the definition of "woe."

My mom used to use the expression, "woe betide" which was pretty much what Jesus was doing. "Woe to you Pharisees!" Not very merciful, eh? Send Him a memo.

Our intelligence is called the "seat of judgment." It is not loving to tickle ears, which is what "you and those who think like you never consider." Cardinal Dolan is a masterful ear tickler which is what he did to the same-sex attracted on numerous occasions. Why should they follow St. John the Baptist's admonition to "repent and hear the good news?" when Cardinal Dolan applauds for them and give them thumbs up?

Catholic in Brooklyn said...

So I take it that you never consider that you might be wrong.

Mary Ann, the last few years for me personally have been all about admitting that I was wrong. I was a staunch traditionalist, probably more so than you are. I apologize if my language offended you, but I was one of "those who think like you" mot all that long ago. Just a few years ago I would have denounced Cardinal Dolan. You know how I feel about Michael Voris, but I use to be a paying subscriber. Just a couple of years ago I thought he was great. Back then, I would never have accepted Pope Francis. I rejected the "Novus Ordo" mentality.

Thanks to the beautiful writings of Pope Benedict XVI and others, I have come to see how wrong I was. The last few years for me have been nothing but mea culpa.

So no, I am not talking about myself.

Don't you think that the reason Jesus condemned the Pharisees had something to do with the fact that they never showed mercy to anyone? That their whole thing was obey the law or it's all over for you? Jesus never condemned the prostitutes, the thieves, the tax collectors that he met every day. Look at the story of the woman at the well. He not only did not condemn her, he offered her salvation.

That is what Pope Francis is talking about, and that is what Cardinal Dolan is talking about. I truly hope that you can someday realize that and stop condemning them. They are following the example of our Lord.

Mary Ann Kreitzer said...

" never consider that you might be wrong."

If that were true I'd never go to Confession.

I was at a talk by Bishop Athanasius Schneider this evening. He talked about the bishops in the Church who are pharisees. He described how the pharisees legitimized divorce for "pastoral reasons." He talked about the "pastoral sophisms of some of the synod fathers" who are using "sophistic words." He also talked about how they "abuse the concept of mercy" and use "cynical trickery." He compared that to the "crystal clear doctrine of Christ." He said many of the bishops were "not disciples of Christ, but disciples of Moses" or even worse "disciples of Epicurus." He talked about the pagan attitude among many of the bishops.He told us the laity's job today is to pray and defend the faith. "Defend the faith in writing through newsletters and blogs....[your job is] spreading the truth....It is your hour. Your are called to defend the truth. It is a beautiful task [necessary] when the episcopacy are not spreading the truth."

Goodness! Was he telling the laity to disagree with and expose the wrong-doing of our bishops? How mean and unmerciful. If someone is distorting the truth, you have no choice but to expose it.

Somehow I don't think you'd like Bishop Schneider much. You probably wouldn't have liked the prophets much either. I'm glad you've found your way to a kinder, gentler you. But you are neither my confessor nor my spiritual adviser and since you disagree with my style so much I'm baffled why you continue to come to my blog.

But if you really want me to change say the same prayer I say every day. "Lord conform (me/Mary Ann) to Your will. Honestly, I'm not interested in conforming my will to yours.

Catholic in Brooklyn said...

I notice that you did not answer one point I made. That does speak volumes, Mwry Ann.

I have a personally autographed book by Bishoop Schneider. I attended a pontifical mass in which he was the celebrant and attended one of his talks here in Brooklyn. In my traditionalist days, I thought he was wonderful. I now realize lthat he supports radical traditionalism, so no, I no longer support him.

I pray the prayer you suggest every day, and I have been going through tremendous changes. As I said, I once thought exactly as you do, and not that long ago.

I will pray that your heart will soften, Mary Ann and you will learn the meaning of Matthew 9:13.

Mary Ann Kreitzer said...

Wow! You're judging a bishop and you "no longer support him." Poor bishop. And because you've changed it's your job to judge and change everybody who doesn't agree with you. "That does speak volumes."

But thanks for the prayers. I pray for you too and will this morning at Mass.

Catholic in Brooklyn said...

This entire post is about judging Cardinal Dolan. So if you can disagree with and judge a prince of the Church, I think I have a right to disagree with a bishop who condemns his fellow bishops.

I guess you are refusing to address any of the points I have made. Instead you just continue insulting me. it's your blog and you can do what you like. But just attacking never brings clarity to any issues. Worse, it destroys your credibility.

Mary Ann Kreitzer said...

I think this conversation is taking place in the Twilight Zone. You have insulted me and even implied that my soul is in danger many times.

Thanks for your concern.

Anonymous said...

Brooklyn Babe,

You Cardinal Dolan and his friend Cardinal Wuerl need to reread the entire Bible in CONTEXT before you accuse anyone of lacking in Mercy!
I correct you dear lady because it is an Act of Mercy to correct the ignorant and your words are clearly a testimony to your ignorance. Try Paul's Letters to Corinthians and recommend them to your Cardinal too before he steps out again giving public scandal by way of bad example to his sheep, by marching in support of sodomy with his LGBT friends!
FYI , I know plenty of homosexuals to whom I have spoke the Truth of the Word
( Made Flesh ) and I certainly did not have to be in Communion with them to communicate to them in truth and love and neither do these Prelates!Scripture is Dogmatic and Doctrinal ,to deny the truths of the Faith therein, is APOSTASY and apostasy can never be merciful it is just cowardice.

Catholic in Brooklyn said...

Sad. Sad. Sad.

Anonymous said...

Yes you are "SAD" especially as a more recent convert who believes you are ready to teach and preach to cradle Catholics brought up in the Faith.
Catholicism 101: The Catholic Church is based on Scripture AND Tradition.
Apparent from your blog is a vile hatred of Catholic Tradition ,my dear that makes you still a Protestant.

Pray and read more and type less.
God Bless you on your journey.