Patrick Archbold is co-founder of Creative Minority Report, a Catholic website that puts a refreshing spin on the intersection of religion, culture, and politics. When not writing, Patrick is director of information technology at a large international logistics company in New York.
Just because you are paranoid, doesn't mean they are not out to get you.
When it comes to traditionalists in the Church, the hits just keep on coming. We have now the regretful news that the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate will join their brethren in the deepest fog and fire of purgatory.
The Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate have suffered under the draconian rule of of their imposed commissioner under the direction of His Eminence João Braz de Aviz Prefect of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life for the crime of crypto-lefebvrianism and justified by supposed internal dissent.
I regret to hear the news that that Cardinal Braz de Aviz has now placed under visitation the Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate. Although, with no clear signs of internal dissent, one can assume that merely crypto-lefebvrianism is again the grounds for indictment.
I have detailed the disproportionate and draconian penalties imposed on the friars, so I will not detail them again.
I have suspected for some time that at the root of this ecclesiastical McCarthyism lies the deep suspicion of the Congregation that in the heart of every traditionalist lies a schismatic in pretend communion. I think this is amply demonstrated by Commissioner Fr. Volpi's public letter in which he described the reason for the visitation as a "crypto-lefebvrian and definitely traditionalist drift."
So sure are the Order's inquisitors of the schism in the hearts of traditionalists that any measure, no matter how disproportionate, that might drive these hidden schismatics into the open is justified.
So it is that I have suspected that the penalties imposed on the FFI are designed to do exactly that, to drive some portion of the FI, no matter how small, into the arms of the SSPX so that their suspicions and actions will seem justified. See!! We told you so!! I see now that Roberto de Mattei has the same suspicion.
So far, the FI have thwarted these plans by remaining faithful and obedient, which I suppose shows how nefarious is their crypto intent. Word came this past week that some significant portion of the Friars have petitioned Rome to be released from their pontifical vows and to be placed under diocesan bishops. Dang it, why won't these schismatics just schism already?
Since it seems that the Friars will not be pushed into disobedience or schism, a fresh new class of crypto-lefebvrians is needed to keep the campaign afloat. Now it is the Sister's turn. I fully expect a similar failure.
I suspect in the end, as the FI and other traditionalists have been sold to the Egyptians and their colored cloak soaked in blood as proof of their demise, one day the Church will be very thankful that these traditionalists endured and preserved treasure for use during the famine.