Dumb question: where are the Catholic 'liberals' in this forum?


#1

Y’know I hear a lot of people decry the ‘liberals’ or otherwise-heterodox Catholics on this forum. Has anyone ever seen one of these folks post on this forum? Does anyone ever come here–as a practicing Roman Catholic–and defend the idea that it is acceptable for Roman Catholics to practice birth control? Or defend on Catholic theological or historical grounds the ordination of women priests? Or advocate the practice of performing sacramental marriages for homosexuals or lesbians? Does anyone ever come here professing to be ‘as good a Catholic as anyone’ yet denying the divinity of Christ or some other basic foundational doctrine of Catholic theology? I’d think that if the RCC were so splintered by dissension, we’d see these sorts of notions defended regularly on this forum. Thus far–I’ve seen no small measure of criticism of the RCC by those on the theological right–critics of the Novus Ordo mass, of some of the reforms and excesses of Vatican II, but I’ve never seen any such criticism from the Catholic theological left. Am I simply missing the threads? Or is the dissenting-but-faithful Catholic largely a bogeyman of the liberal Press?


#2

There are a few, but they are not as pervasive as the RadTrads on this board. For some reason, alot of them get banned for one reason or another.

As for the ones left, most of them I do not see their posts because they are on my ignore list.

PF


#3

FYI, there is a name for a heterodox Catholic, commonly called a Cafeteria Catholic or CINO. It is called HERETIC, look it up.


#4

Politically speaking, i agree with 99% of the definition below…

…hard to pidgeon hole… there are so many definitions of liberal… i like the one in the dictionary… and you can find variations in different dictionaries…
[list=1]

  • Not limited to or by established, or authoritarian attitudes, free from bigotry.
  • Favoring proposals for reform, open to new ideas for progress, **and tolerant of the ideas and behavior of others; broad-minded. **
  • Of, relating to, or characteristic of liberalism.
    *]Liberal Of, designating, or characteristic of a political party founded on or associated with principles of social and political liberalism, especially in Great Britain, Canada, and the United States.
    [/list] Theologically speaking, i consider myself pretty conservative and orthodox…

  • #5

    [quote=Scott_Lafrance]FYI, there is a name for a heterodox Catholic, commonly called a Cafeteria Catholic or CINO. It is called HERETIC, look it up.
    [/quote]

    Yeah I’d expect a mainstream or conservative Roman Catholic to say so. My question is, where are your opponents on the Catholic Left who are accusing YOU of being the ‘heretic’, or at least flinging some similarly-unsavory epithet in your direction? I mean–I KNOW that there are heterodox Catholic intellectuals out there, hither-and-yon. The BBC reincarnated Hans Kung this week for an interview, for instance. (Yes I know Kung is not considered a ‘Catholic theologian’ any longer, but he is STILL a Roman Catholic and calls himself such, regardless of how the Vatican classifies his inchoate and meandering writings). To hear Kung and those of his ilk speak, they are addressing concerns widely felt in the larger Catholic population, which the oppressive and patriarchal Catholic Hierarchy. My question is–if such dissent is so widespread and the RCC so deeply divided–how is it that Catholic Answers isn’t pelted by them daily and vociferously? It is scarcely attributable to the fierceness of the moderation here–as I pointed out, the Traditionalists (equally heterodox but in an opposite bent) post here rather regularly and freely.


    #6

    Didn’t you know? Liberalism is a sin and the product of a disordered mind–another thread told us so!:slight_smile:


    #7

    [quote=vegpotter]Didn’t you know? Liberalism is a sin and the product of a disordered mind–another thread told us so!:slight_smile:
    [/quote]

    …and if you read it in these forums, it must be so, right?:whacky:

    Peace:thumbsup:


    #8

    I have seen a couple “Liberal” Catholics and one atheist. The atheist got banned because:

    1.   His screen name was an Aztec god that demanded infant sacrifice (not cool and even offensive).
      
    2.   2) He would never answer the other posts questions and kept putting out his "elitist intellectual" dribble.
      

    The "Liberal Catholic” would never answer any questions and just spouted a secular world view with no back up in reality even after several of the “orthodox” poster had shown him that he was wrong.

    You can’t have a debate/discussion if one side doesn’t respond.

    My $.02 worth.

    Anton


    #9

    [quote=space ghost]Politically speaking, i agree with 99% of the definition below…

    …hard to pidgeon hole… there are so many definitions of liberal… i like the one in the dictionary… and you can find variations in different dictionaries…
    [list=1]
    *]

  • Not limited to or by established, or authoritarian attitudes, free from bigotry.
  • Favoring proposals for reform, open to new ideas for progress, **and tolerant of the ideas and behavior of others; broad-minded. **
  • Of, relating to, or characteristic of liberalism.
    *]Liberal Of, designating, or characteristic of a political party founded on or associated with principles of social and political liberalism, especially in Great Britain, Canada, and the United States.
    [/list]Theologically speaking, i consider myself pretty conservative and orthodox…
    [/quote]

    You’re being willfully dense. ‘Liberal’ as it is commonly employed in the English language–and I assume your primary language to be English–refers to the degree to which one differs from a traditional standard, usually in a manner which interprets such standards more loosely or freely. Hence, Glasnost was a ‘liberal’ notion within the Soviet Union because it advocated a greater degree of freedom which had been previously possible under traditional Marxist-Leninism. ‘Conservatives’ give a more-or-less strict reading of the standard under scrutiny. ‘Traditionalism’ tends to refer to ever more-restrictive interpretations of the standard–the Traditionalists in the RCC see the Tridentine Mass as irrevocably unchangeable for instance.

    Obviously it is possible to point out various and sundry odd permutations in how such terms are applied: are the Libertarians a ‘conservative’ or a ‘liberal’ movement in American politics? Some political conservatives oppose federal laws against abortion, drug use, etcetera, because of their views on the Constitutional limits of federal powers, but they are employing conservative principles of constitutional interpretation about which most conservatives agree–even if not all conservatives come to quite the same conclusion.

    Since the majority of us speak English well enough to understand what is meant by ‘liberal’, ‘conservative’, etcetera, there is no need to make this thread a over semantics. We know which issues are broadly supported by Roman Catholic liberals–greater rights regarding abortion and birth control, a broader embrace of homosexual rights, ordination of women, considerably more liberty vis’a’vis theological disputes, etcetera. Other issues could be named, of course. The point of this thread is that there is supposedly a ‘Great Crowd’ (stealing a term from the Jehovah’s Witnesses) storming the gates of the Vatican on behalf of these issues. Somehow, though, none of them seem particularly computer literate: or, at least, they seem unwilling ever to post HERE. I was wondering why, and I speculate that it is likely because the so-called ‘Great Crowd’ is largely a figment of the wishful imagination of our liberal press.

    Or do you not know what the term ‘liberal press’ refers to either?


  • #10

    [quote=flameburns623]You’re being willfully dense. ‘Liberal’ as it is commonly employed in the English language–and I assume your primarly language to be English–refers to the degree to which one differs from a traditional standard, usually in a manner which interprets such standards more loosely or freely. Hence, Glasnost was a ‘liberal’ notion within the Soviet Union because it advocated a greater degree of freedom which had been previously possible under traditional Marxist-Leninism. ‘Conservatives’ give a more-or-less strict reading of the standard under scrutiny. ‘Traditionalism’ tends to refer to ever more-restrictive interpretations of the standard–the Traditionalists in the RCC see the Tridentine Mass as irrevocably unchangeable for instance.

    Obviously it is possible to point out various and sundry odd permutations in how such terms are applied: are the Libertarians a ‘conservative’ or a ‘liberal’ movement in American politics? Some political conservatives oppose federal laws against abortion, drug use, etcetera, because of their views on the Constitutional limits of federal powers, but they are employing conservative principles or constitutional interpretation about which most conservatives agree–even if not all conservatives come to quite the same conclusion.

    Since the majority of us speak English well enough to understand what is meant by ‘liberal’, ‘conservative’, etcetera, there is no need to make this thread a over semantics. We know which issues are broadly supported by Roman Catholic liberals–greater rights regarding abortion and birth control, a broader embrace of homosexual rights, ordination of women, considerably more liberty vis’a’vis theological disputes, etcetera. Other issues could be named, of course. The point of this thread is that there is supposedly a ‘Great Crowd’ (stealing a term from the Jehovah’s Witnesses) storming the gates of the Vatican on behalf of these issues. Smehow, though, none of them seem particularly computer literate: or, at least, they seem unwilling ever to post HERE. I was wondering why, and I speculate that it is likely because the so-called ‘Great Crowd’ is largely a figment of the wishful imagination of our liberal press.

    Or do you not know what the term ‘liberal press’ refers to either?
    [/quote]

    i respectfull disagree… with your defintion of “liberal”, but i support your right to disagree… Peace:thumbsup:


    #11

    OK, here goes…

    I am not a real fan of labeling folks, but it seems to make sense in this forum, in order to know where people stand. I guess those who want to label will call me a “cafeteria Catholic”.

    Let me turn to the first post and respond:

    Acceptable for Roman Catholics to practice birth control: When used to limit family size due to economic reasons, I see nothing wrong with that.

    Ordination of women priests: I wouldn’t have a problem with a female priest, but I am not going to run around promoting the cause. An all male clergy is fine with me.

    Sacramental gay marriage: As a gay male (and I rarely label myself as such…not due to shame…just that my sexuality is one small part of me, and I am not defined by it), I am for civil unions for gay and lesbian folks and against sacramental marriage for us.

    Would I deny the divinity of Jesus? Absolutely not.

    A few other thoughts:

    My stand on abortion? Killing life.

    As a cradle Catholic, I love and cherish my relationship with God and the Church. The Sacraments of Holy Eucharist and Confession (I am showing my age on that term) are very important to me.

    I faithfully attend Mass, usually at a N O parish, but sometimes when I need a jolt of the awe and mystery, I attent a local indult Liturgy.

    I love good liturgy, can’t stand the abuses (as a child of the 70’s, I can say that I’ve “been there, done that”) and have worked for the Church as a choir director in my home parish for 12 years and served on the liturgy committee.

    Would I consider leaving the Church because of “issues”? Not on your life. Do I get agitated about things that happen in the Church sometimes? Sure. Am I going to publicly bash Her? Never.

    Am I going to get into it with folks here on the forum? Nope, it’s not worth using the energy to argue.

    So, yes, I guess that the moniker of “cafeteria Catholic” applies to me.

    Thank you.


    #12

    [quote=flameburns623]Yeah I’d expect a mainstream or conservative Roman Catholic to say so. My question is, where are your opponents on the Catholic Left who are accusing YOU of being the ‘heretic’, or at least flinging some similarly-unsavory epithet in your direction? I mean–I KNOW that there are heterodox Catholic intellectuals out there, hither-and-yon. The BBC reincarnated Hans Kung this week for an interview, for instance. (Yes I know Kung is not considered a ‘Catholic theologian’ any longer, but he is STILL a Roman Catholic and calls himself such, regardless of how the Vatican classifies his inchoate and meandering writings). To hear Kung and those of his ilk speak, they are addressing concerns widely felt in the larger Catholic population, which the oppressive and patriarchal Catholic Hierarchy. My question is–if such dissent is so widespread and the RCC so deeply divided–how is it that Catholic Answers isn’t pelted by them daily and vociferously? It is scarcely attributable to the fierceness of the moderation here–as I pointed out, the Traditionalists (equally heterodox but in an opposite bent) post here rather regularly and freely.
    [/quote]

    Hans Hung has been stripped of his authority to teach because of his dissenting views. Such is the way of heresy.


    #13

    I’m a posting Catholic Liberal…
    however, I do not support abortion at will
    I do not support gay marriage
    I do not support euthanasia
    or any of those other issues you listed among your ‘definition’ of what a liberal is.

    There has been way too much ‘lumping together’ of groups of people into categories in error. To you all liberals are for abortion, etc. and that simply is not true.

    Just as there are some Republicans or Conservative people who believe in contraception and the right to choose.


    #14

    I guess someone needs to define what a liberal Catholic is.

    Let me define what Orthodox/Conservative means to me:

    1.   I believe that the Church was created by Jesus Christ and He endowed it with the His Keys. The Holy Father is Christ's vicar on Earth and the Church teaches Christ's truth.
      
    2.   As Catholics we must learn what the Church teaches. Then we must prayerfully apply that teaching to our lives. Are some of the teachings hard? You bet. But my experience is when I understand the purpose (or try to) my life is better when I follow the Church's teaching. Do I give blind faith to the Church? In the past I didn't. But as I have seen the Church is right in issue after issue, I have given pretty much my consent to all of its teachings (I used to support the death penalty, now I don't).
      
    3.   I teach the Church to my children and I expect them to follow its teachings. After a very long and loud argument with my 20 year old son and my 17 year old daughter about me not paying for their college if I found out that they were living an immoral life (sleeping with someone, using drugs, etc.), they were stunned at my stand. I told them my job is not to make them happy in this world, but to help them to get to heaven.
      

    Does that make me an orthodox/conservative/right wing nut job?

    Anton


    #15

    [quote=AntonV]I guess someone needs to define what a liberal Catholic is.

    BINGO! …but be careful, like pirana, throw them a little piece and the little buggers with try their best to tear you from limb to limb… “Some” self proclaimed, holier than thou’s truly believe that it is their duty to convert you to their way of thinking even if their method drives you so far from christianity that a person would never enter a church again. Practice commandments 1 & 2 and you will do so much more for yourself and others than you ever thought possible…

    Peace:thumbsup:
    [/quote]


    #16

    [quote=AntonV]I guess someone needs to define what a liberal Catholic is . . .

    1. I believe that the Church was created by Jesus Christ and He endowed it with the His Keys. The Holy Father is Christ’s vicar on Earth and the Church teaches Christ’s truth.
      [/quote]

    One possibility amongst many is that a ‘liberal Catholic’ would see the Pope as a ‘first among peers’, and would reject the rather strict pyramidical hierarchy which you embrace. There would be a sense that the Pope, bishops, priests, etcetera would practice some measure of ‘collegiality’ one with another and with the laity. The Church would not be seen so much as ‘teaching Christ’s Truth’ as ‘spreading the Good News of His Love and embracing the Truths of all things as they are relevant today’. But bear in mind–I have no particular sympathy for liberalism and thus am charicaturing the position more than accurately describing it.

    As Catholics we must learn what the Church teaches. Then we must prayerfully apply that teaching to our lives. Are some of the teachings hard? You bet. But my experience is when I understand the purpose (or try to) my life is better when I follow the Church’s teaching. Do I give blind faith to the Church? In the past I didn’t. But as I have seen the Church is right in issue after issue, I have given pretty much my consent to all of its teachings (I used to support the death penalty, now I don’t).

    Again, my impression is that a liberal Catholic would want to describe the teaching role as a DIALOGUE and not a MONOLOGUE. The Church (in the view of my hypothetical liberal Catholic) needs to apply it’s teachings in a sensitive and relevant manner, after doing due diligence to truly apprehend what the needs of today’s Catholics truly are. Catholics should likewise be taught to think independently and creatively, to apply the principles of Christian teaching in an open, loving, and ecumenical manner.

    I teach the Church to my children and I expect them to follow its teachings. After a very long and loud argument with my 20 year old son and my 17 year old daughter about me not paying for their college if I found out that they were living an immoral life (sleeping with someone, using drugs, etc.), they were stunned at my stand. I told them my job is not to make them happy in this world, but to help them to get to heaven.

    The hypothetical liberal Catholic MIGHT not disagree TOO vehemently with your desire to convey some sense of values to your children–but would probably take exception to the idea that you should intervene in their exploration of human experience by actually penalizing them. After all–this life should be just a little bit of a glimpse at the Heaven to which all humanity is destined anyhow.

    This is obviously a tongue-in-cheek parody of Catholic liberalism. It is what I think most conservatives (Catholic or not) feel that Catholic liberals are advocating. I stress again that my initial purpose in creating this post is my mild surprise that we don’t see more REAL Catholic liberals posting their views on this board and defending them.

    ADDENDUM: I did not so much make these ideas up as to make a serious effort to reflect the sort of views I heard purported ‘Catholics’ express during the recent Conclave, when the popular media went a’looking for people to say what sort of Pope they would like to see elected. It occurred to me that the media somehow was finding people claiming to be Roman Catholic whose view and aspirations for the Church are totally at odds with anything I ever actually see expressed by practicing Roman Catholics on this message board. Incidentally–I think a lot of Roman Catholics form their impressions of Protestantism from the same popular media, which has a dubious effect on dialogue between us. I think the idea that the Teeming Masses of Catholics are militating for radical changes in the RCC are overstated–as I have said several times already. If it were otherwise, I think this forum and forums like it would be overrun with people who would not only mention, peripherally, that they have ‘differences’ with the official Church; but who would defend their ‘differences’ as vehemently as the rules of this Forum would permit.


    #17

    Catholic social teachings can be quite liberal, from a political stand anyway. But unfortunately the term itself now seems to carry such a negative connotation it could be equated with being evil.

    I agree with SG, I don’t seem to fit the pigeon hole.

    I think it is really scary when ideas are labeled this way. It really doesn’t allow for any honest development in our economy, government or our faith for that matter.

    A priest in my diocese is an economist and writes a wonderful column on the Church’s teachings of social justice and economic policies. Because many of the issues seem to reflect ideologies shared in the ‘liberal’ camp, he is now being labeled left-wing. This label has become a kiss of death.

    I am liberal in some political areas and I thought I was actually quite conservative religiously. I love our Church’s rich traditions, both big T and t. I think the Church teaches the fullness of the truth and do my best to be obedient. I like the old, but am not worried about the new. I trust that the Church will defend the T, and develop the t, in fidelity to Jesus Christ.


    #18

    [quote=vegpotter]Didn’t you know? Liberalism is a sin and the product of a disordered mind–another thread told us so!:slight_smile:
    [/quote]

    From Liberalism is a Sin -

    Liberalism “is, therefore, the radical and universal denial of all divine truth and Christian dogma, the primal type of all heresy, and the supreme rebellion against the authority of God and His Church. As with Lucifer, its maxim is, ‘I will not serve.’” (Ch. 3).

    “Liberalism, whether in the doctrinal or practical order, is a sin. In the doctrinal order, it is heresy, and consequently a mortal sin against faith. In the practical order, it is a sin against the commandments of God and of the Church, for it virtually transgresses all commandments. To be more precise: in the doctrinal order, Liberalism strikes at the very foundations of faith; it is heresy radical and universal, because within it are comprehended all heresies. In the practical order it is a radical and universal infraction of the divine law, since it sanctions and authorizes all infractions of that law.” (Ch. 3).


    #19

    [quote=Scott_Lafrance]Hans Hung has been stripped of his authority to teach because of his dissenting views. Such is the way of heresy.
    [/quote]

    Years ago I was a Roving Supervisor for a local security company, which also had an Overnight Building Check service. Because one of the Building Check officers was out on an extended leave, the supervisors were rotating his part-time shift between us. One of the supervisors,‘William’, needed to take off on a night that he would normally have done the overnight building checks. Usually this meant that the job would fall to the other supervisor who was not on the schedule that night, a woman named ‘Ivana’. After a supervisor’s meeting, ‘William’ asked ‘Ivana’ , in the presence of the rest of us supervisors, if she could cover for him that night. She was noncommital but seemed to me and everyone else to agree to do this. On the appointed night however, she failed to show, and since this shift was covered by supervisors–hypothetically reliable individuals–we had never bothered to create a check-in system for the shift. By chance, the overnight supervisor realized that Ivana hadn’t shown up, several hours into the shift; and called me in. Between the two of us we managed to split up the building check duties and get them done–barely and not done well, but done. When ‘Ivana’ was questioned about why she didn’t show up after seemingly agreeing to cover the shift for ‘William’ she replied, “I never said I would; I never said I wouldn’t”.

    Reading Hans Kung is sort of reminiscent of ‘Ivana’s’ response. He never actually says anything but you sure are left with the impression that he did.


    #20

    ‘Liberal’ as it is commonly employed in the English language–and I assume your primary language to be English–refers to the degree to which one differs from a traditional standard, usually in a manner which interprets such standards more loosely or freely

    I agree that liberal is commonly used in this manner here, but that is not the most common use of the word, at least in my experience. I think spaceghost makes a good point about the definitions of liberal, as I have very often heard it used as respectful and tolerant of the views of others, and open to exploring new ideas. That doesn’t necessarily translate into interpreting standards more loosely or freely, just being willing to think about them, and to allow others to discuss them.

    I always considered myself a pretty orthodox and traditional Catholic until I found this forum. Here, those terms seem to mean that one cannot even question or discuss the basis for the Church’s teachings without having a liberal or hetrodox label thrown at one. I think it’s ok to study not only what the church teaches, but why it teaches what it does. I also think that struggling with understanding and accepting some of the church’s teachings is part of the journey. So, I think I might be a moderate or liberal Catholic after all. Whodathunkit?

    Ironically, I came to this forum after all the hullabaloo with the death of JPII and all the media hype and talk on other forums about his death being an opportunity to make the church more progressive, especially with regard to its views on women. Since, as a woman, I had never felt slighted in the least by the RC’s position on women, I came here to learn to defend the faith and explain how the church honors women and does not subjugate them, even though women cannot be priests. Well, what a surprise. I would never refer any of the women who attack the church for its positions on women to this forum, because they could point to any number of posts and say “I told you so.”

    I see the term feminazi freely tossed around on this forum, and it is NOT restricted to pro-abortion positions. I’ve been attacked here for daring to state that people should be able to come to this apologetics site and ask for the reason behind the church’s stance on women priests without self-proclaimed orthodox members jumping in and trying to shut down the discussion. I’ve seen threads in which people freely admit to jumping communion lines to avoid receiving the eucharist from a female extraordiary minister. I’ve seen a poster state, in a very crude way, that women could not be priests because of their monthly cycles. Another no doubt orthodox, good Catholic man posted that women shouldn’t be priests because they wouldn’t be able to refrain from gossiping about what they heard in the confessional. Someone proudly posted how his priest had a rule: no **pantyhose **on my altar. (guess referring to women as women or females was just too liberal) This was followed by many admiring posts – good for that priest.

    Question: how is it orthodox (in the sense of accepting the Church’s teachings) to actively reject the church’s authority in allowing women lectors and extraordianary ministers and altar girls? How is it orthodox to reject JPII’s teachings on the honor and dignity of women?


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