The Battle Between Tradition Versus Relativism: ‘In Black And White’ By Archbishop Aguer

Published at InfoCatolica from Rorate Caeli by Peter Kwasniewski

The title that heads this note does not refer to the cinema before the invention of technicolor, but to the astonishing criticism of current ecclesiastical officialdom that is directed against the members of the Church who love the great Catholic Tradition, and who recognize that homogeneity is what should characterize the development of ecclesial realities: dogma, liturgy, law, institutions. I have often quoted St. Vincent of Lerins and the formulas he coined in his Commonitory. Those realities can be expressed nove (in a new way), according to the cultural contexts of certain times and places; but in the deposit to be transmitted one cannot include nova, new things, novelties, which imply a heterogeneity with respect to the origins. 

Tradition Versus Relativism
Angel Sculpture by karigamb08

For more than half a century (the Second Vatican Council ended on December 8, 1965), the Church has been torn by an undeniable division: on the one hand, fundamentalists or conservatives (I use the names with which they are usually disqualified), and on the other hand, progressives or liberals, who are delighted with the current pontificate. Am I oversimplifying the complexity of ecclesial processes and phenomena? 

There is a very wide intermediate range: those who, with a great effort of study, thought, and evaluation—among whom I would place myself—try to gather the positive heritage of the Council, which, as Benedict XVI reminded us, must always be read in light of the great ecclesial Tradition, but who, at the same time, do not accept the alterations that were imposed in the name of the “spirit of the Council”—a supposed spirit that is not, by the way, the Holy Spirit.
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By the way! What are your thoughts on the Archbishops’ point regarding an intermediate way?x


In the last decade, a relativistic conception of faith has been consolidated in the Church, which struggles to find a place in the global sphere of a de-Christianized, secularized culture; its promoters do not wish to appear and to be considered foreigners in that world, and so they try to find their place by watering down with muddy water the exquisite wine of Catholic Truth. Although history records analogous phenomena in the past, it would seem that those times of which St. Paul spoke have arrived: “difficult times” or “perilous times” (2 Tim 3:1: kairoi chalepoi).

The “shrinking” of the Church in countries that once had a Catholic majority is being disguised. Historical studies do not ignore the vicissitudes Christianity has undergone since apostolic times, although it is difficult to make value judgments on the various stages. It is more complicated to consider what has happened in the last half-century, because the din of a diversity of opinions close to us continues to make itself heard.

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