Friday, November 21, 2008

Michael's Army Not Composed Of Jedi Knights

I was over on the website today reading an article by Fr. Dwight Longenecker on the recent brouhaha over Fr. Jay Scott Newman in South Carolina. Fr. Newman was the priest who wrote the article in his parish bulletin strongly suggesting that those parishioners who voted for Obama should go to confession before receiving communion.

In my own commentary I suggested in the interests of fairness, that Fr. Newman should also have strongly suggested that anyone who voted for McCain should also go to confession because McCain supported embryonic stem cell research, which the bishops have also designated an 'intrinsic evil'. I felt Fr. Newman was being a cafeteria Catholic in his focus on the democratic candidate.

After reading Fr. Longenecker's article and the commentary associated with it, I realize I am totally off base. It isn't about the relative merits of one party versus the other with regards to abortion, it's really about those who have been co opted to Satan's camp and those who are faithful loyal Catholic followers in St. Michael's army.

I also learned from Fr. Longenecker that I am in the 'defiant' camp and my kind will be extinct in the next twenty years or so. I wonder if this code speak for the Vatican II 'boomers' as in most of us will be dead. Nah, can't be.

Here's Fr. Longenecker's description of the defiant Catholic as he determined from the thousands of emails which the parish received from all over the US. The other three categories were the demonic, the lame, and the loyal supporters:

But the "defiant" category makes up the largest number of our respondents, and is the saddest category of all. Statistics show us that these are the Catholics who sealed Obama's victory. They are people who were poorly catechized over the last 40 years in America. They have been nurtured in the Protest Generation and told that it is fine, even noble, to disagree with the Church. They have been taught to act according to their conscience without taking the trouble or time to inform it.

Caught up in the trendy agendas of the day, they have jumped on the bandwagons of feminism, environmentalism, homosexualism, socialism, and sentimentalism -- mistaking their favorite cause for the Catholic Faith. When they are confronted with clear, concise, and consistent Catholicism they are shocked and angry, and their response is (if they haven't done so already) to leave the Church, preferring their own wisdom to the wisdom of God.

But then things get even more interesting:

In the next 20 years, this sort of Catholic will become extinct. As America descends further into decadence and decline, the lines will be drawn between the forces of darkness and the forces of light. People will have to choose whether to serve God and His Church or the dark side.

So it isn't about being democrat or republican it's about being a defiant Darth Vader or a Catholic Jedi Knight. I really wish I could see the world so black and white, but I'm not allowed to, I seem to be cursed with seeing into the depths of things and not their surface presentation.

Shining light into dark places sometimes means you really need to go deep into things to find the real hidden places where darkness is born, and it means starting with yourself. It's not pleasant and as I've written before it means confronting those original events which trigger your fear mechanism and all the defenses which are associated with protecting that defenseless child.

I can remember many times when I was very young calling on Michael to protect me from those things hidden in the darkness of my night time bedroom. Now when I call on Michael I'm more apt to be taken directly into those terrors to see where they originated and why they are still in effect.

Michael's metaphorical sword is one of love and to truly wield the sword means one must be able to love, to see the Christ in others, to see Christ in oneself, to seriously confront one's own shortcomings. Michael's sword is double edged. It's as apt to cut the wielder as it is a perceived enemy. It's not just about saying some rosaries and receiving the sacraments. That's only a start, an apprenticeship if you will. To go beyond the basics means self discipline and the courage to face your own shadow self. To go beyond the basics means to learn to unite oneself with and convert the 'enemy' not to divide and conquer them. This is exactly the kind of spiritual warfare that Jesus was engaged in, and if anyone thinks Michael is engaged in some other kind of warfare, they haven't really met him--yet.


  1. Wow! Between this and John Allen's weekly blog, defining Cardinal Stafford's speech against Obama, the dark energy seems to be gathering to create even darker energy. Such is to be expected from medieval minds and fifth grade mentalities.

    Such words like "extinct" are deliberate words to incite violence, not hope, and very devisive. Christ has conquered death. Fr. Longenecker has obviously aborted this concept from his understanding of Christ's teaching when he talks about anyone's extinction. He judges by appearances only.

    Colleen, I couldn't have said it better myself:
    "To go beyond the basics means to learn to unite oneself with and convert the 'enemy' not to divide and conquer them. "

    Their heads are obviously in medieval man's concepts and they have not learned the lessons of history, nor of Christ. As Carl would say, they've got their huta's.

  2. Good article colleen, although I think you may have gotten the vader/jedi backwards.

    The catholic church is represented by the empire, and we are represented by the rebellion and the jedi knights. When we view it from that perspective, there is a tremendous amount of prophesy that is inherent in the Star Wars saga.

    As I ponder it more and more, it is absolutely amazing how prophetic it really is regarding the struggle within the catholic church today.

    What amazes me is that so many of those who are condemning the laity who have left are so blinded by their self righteousnes that they are unable to see that the attitudes that are driving their condemnations are the same attitudes that are driving away the laity.

  3. Carl, I was juxtaposing against the ideas espoused in Fr. Longenecker's article, although I know you know that.

    I don't think the Church is the evil empire, I just think there's a lot of scared folks who make themselves feel better about things by thinking they represent the real and only truth, when in reality it's a particular vision of Christ and not terribly well thought out. It is emotionally comforting for them though and we all need our comfort zones.

  4. I don't think the Church is the evil empire either Colleen. It has politically swung to the right and in some cases to the far extreme right. I think the Bishops meeting indicated that and the majority decided against denying Communion to Joe Biden, which I thought was positive news.

    These extremist positions are in the limelight now because their light really has burnt out, but they want to make sure that it is not extinguished. I believe that they are a positive force in the limited sense that they bring issues of life to the forefront of one's consciousness. However, their focus is so extreme that they can never hear the voice that truly is for life. They wind up demonizing that voice. They are the fanatics and fanatical responses is what we'll get with them. We will not get human responses. We will get animal cries. Their attempt to rekindle the light that has burnt out is based on their holding onto medieval beliefs such as from St Thomas Aquinas who really can't cut it in the world today. He had his day, like all the other greats before him. It is not his day now. We are naturally more educated than those of that time because, in truth, we know more now than we did back then. It has nothing to do with scholastics, but with heart and soul. We have what Thomas Aquinas did not have and that is perspective of that heart and soul in history. Man has experienced so much since then in his and her heart and soul.. If only one would pay attention more to the details, where the devil is, and the truth is, one would attain a better sense of history and what one's role was in the present. However, their view and world-view is skewed. They will say we are skewed. If only they would just love us a bit, that would be a great thing.... one giant step for mankind.

    So there is some synchronisity here Carl and Colleen. Space Odyssey = have you heard it yet?

  5. Colleen, thanks for this profound meditation. I needed to read it today. So often Michael is used as a symbol of warfare and dividing the flock into good and evil.

    I like very much the insistence that his sword is about love, and that we can confront those dark places in ourselves and the world with love only--if we hope to succeed.

  6. I see that I should have been clearer.

    I did not mean to imply that the church was the "evil empire", but that the church is the totality of the empire, which includes all sided in the conflict.

    Evil is represented by the emperor, good is represented by the ascended jedi masters.

    The struggle between luke and vader represents the struggle that each of us face as we grapple with our own inner darkness.

    The final battle, when luke says "no" to the emperor, "no" to evil is where all of us will eventually end up. Even those who were on the dark path will eventually turn from the darkness and cast it into the abyss to be destroyed, just as vader cast the emperor into the abyss.

    There are other parallels, storm troopers obviously represent opus dei, kok etc who are blindly following the leadership down the path of darkness. The remaining (non-rebel) citizens of the empire represent those who are too scrared now or who are simply unable in the moment to step into the light, or, those who have left the church.

    The rebel forces obviously represent those who have seen the light and are following that light.

    All are part of the empire, all united by one force.

    The more deeply we analyze the movie, I believe the more parallels we will see with the conflict that is unfolding within the church. It is almost as if Lucas based the movies on what is happening within the church.