Monday, June 04, 2012

Sometimes you need to hold your fire

I wish conservative and traditionalist Catholics would choose their battles better. Those sound like coward words and that's not how I mean it. Let me try to explain. Recently I saw photos of a new priest's first ordination. One of them showed him giving Communion to his little niece. The child was not dressed in the traditional First Communion outfit and someone wrote in to comment. The little one's pretty outfit wasn't completely traditional but it wasn't scandalous either. If I had a child that age I'd have no problem with her wearing that dress.  My own First Communion dress was actually midnight blue with white Swiss dots.  I wore a wreath of flowers instead of a veil like the other girls. I didn't look like the others but I was perfectly modest...honest. The commenter angered other commenters who remarked that Traditionalists were mean. The people who reacted that way were silly, but people are silly. They make snap judgements based on little things.

Another time on another site I saw remarks of a presumably traditionalist woman who ranted about the cheap fabric and sequins on the dresses of the little First Communicants at her parish. I thought she came off as a snob whom I would not care to know---not everybody can afford silk. Are working class or underclass girls not allowed to have the sacrament?  Both these ladies made a very bad impression. If a teen aged girl or woman comes to Mass dressed like a streetwalker I'll be the first to frown but picking on a tiny little girl recieving her First Communion from  her uncle, a brand new priest was just stupid. As I've said before the pope can be a shinning example, the local parish priest can be a beacon of holiness and it all gets shunted aside because the people in the pew are stupid jerks.

There are things that we must fight about.  If we see sacrilege, if we see a deacon acting like he's the pastor, if we see a priest forget that he is supposed to be an alter Christus that's one thing but don't pull out the ma deuce to kill a flea. It makes you look like a damn fool and it sabotages all the efforts to reclaim reverence, beauty and actual Catholic teaching for our parishes.