Chruch 'Splitting' into Different Branches?

I was on a site that was run by an Orthodox Jewish woman and it made me sort of think. Judaism is split into Orthodox, Reform, and Conservative (for the most part, I think there’s ‘reconstructionist’ or something too, but these are the three big branches). Is the Catholic Church heading in this direction?

It would still be one Church however, as if you’re not subject to the Roman Pontiff then you’re not Catholic obviously, but sometimes it almosts seem as if someday you’ll say “Oh I’m Catholic” and the other person will respond “Really? Traditional or Ordinary?” Has this already happened maybe? Are we sort of splitting into branches, held together by common doctrines and our Pope, but drastically different in the way we express and regard our Faith?

Has anyone else thought about this? Had any thoughts?

Yes, definitely. This phenomenon appeared beginning after Vatican II. Thankfully, the novel, non-traditional, innovative branch is slowly being steered back towards the Church, guided by our current pontiff. Summorum Pontificum is representative of his gigantic effort.

The Eastern Rites of the Catholic Church are like what you are taling about here. They have been around for a very long time

That’s true, I hadn’t thought about that. This would be within one rite, however. Do any of the Eastern rites have this issue? Has there developed a more Traditional sect and just a ‘normal’ sect in any of the Eastern rites?

Maybe the ‘High Church’ and ‘Low Church’ groups in the Anglican Communion would be more accurate an analogy.

But I thought the current pope was in favor of freedom of religion?

I just read about these guys a couple of days ago. What their significance is within the wider scopes of traditionalism and eastern catholicism is beyond me.

The SSPJ seems, to me, to be like the SSPX: they claim fidelity to the Pope, but they ignore/rebuke any practical papal jurisdiction in their affairs.

The job of the Pope and the Magisterium is to prevent a multi- branch split like the ones in others churches. That the big advantage of the CC. But as in other humans institutions the will always be liberals and conservatives.

Now this is my personal opinion, and I have no real evidence to back it up, but I get the feeling that when Benedict XVI speaks of freedom of religion, he is using the term differently than traditionally understood. I don’t think he uses the term to mean that everyone has a right to worship whatever god that they choose, as he knows well that it is God’s will that everyone become Catholic. I get the impression that all this “freedom of religion” talk is actually a call to remember that those who do not share our beliefs are still human beings and worthy of dignity and respect.

In other words, I think “religious liberty” means that although everyone who is aware of his obligation must become/remain Catholic, we must not discriminate against those who do not. I could be totally wrong, but that’s always been how I’ve taken it when Benedict and John Paul II have spoken about this.

There is the Reformed Catholic Church. Does anyone know anything about this church and how they differ from the Roman Catholic Church?

In many ways, the Catholic church is already in such a state. There’s the sedevacantists, SSPX, the Traditionalists, the moderates, the progressives, the neo-catechumenical way, and the SSPX’s counterparts on the left.

Thank goodness the Supreme Pontiff Benedict is working to reconcile everyone. By necessity, I call myself a traditionalist, but I would rather just call myself a Catholic–one who believes in everything the Pope says, and tries to continue to promote the faith as it has existed for 2000 years.

Unity in the Church is the most important factor in our winning souls for Christ. United we stand…
And the Holy Father knows this. Although it may take a long time, I am confident that someday, even though it may be centuries from now, the Church will be unified at least to the point it was a century ago.

There’s Catholic, Ignorant Catholic, and nonCatholic. A Catholic is faithful to the teachings of the Church, whether layperson, priest, nun…obedience to the teachings of the Church. I personally always say Traditional Catholic in reference to myself because that tells people that I’m Catholic, not “hybrid.” I don’t like saying “traditional” first, as it gives the impression you mentioned, but I don’t want to be associated with the liberals which run the Catholic world.

But those are not “branches.” Some are separate independent entities and others are legitimate movements and orders within the Church. These kinds of things have always existed.

In any event, in regards to the OP, the counterpart to the different sects of Judaism would be the various denominations/sects that exist under the general umbrella of “Christianity.” Obviously, there’s only one true expression of the religion, but there are groups that differ on what that expression is.

If you mean that the state can neither impede people from nor coerce people into searching for and coming to the truth and worshiping God according to that truth, then you are correct. If you mean that he was in favor of there being no obligation to God to search for and embrace that true faith, than no, he is not in favor of that.

Of course, how state’s should act in regards to religion given the differences of societies (an almost totally Catholic society, a very pluralist society, a Muslim society, etc.) in order to promote the common good is a matter of prudential judgment, as long as the above principle is maintained.

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