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"Double Standard" Update

No Enemies to the Left

by Christopher A. Ferrara

One of the hallmarks of liberalism is its double-standard in condemning boogeymen of the Right, such as Joe McCarthy, while turning a blind eye to the depredations of certifiable demons of the Left, such as the incomparable mass-murderer Mao Tse Tung, whom the liberal press called "an agrarian reformer."

I suppose it is just another sign of the post-conciliar crisis that the same double-standard is now at work in the Catholic Church. In 1988 Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre consecrated four bishops for his Society of Saint Pius X (SSPX) without a papal mandate, with the stated aim of preserving Catholic Tradition from the current chaos in the Church.

Right or wrong , Lefebvre at least acted with a good motive. Yet he and the bishops he consecrated were immediately pronounced schismatic and excommunicated in Vatican documents. We are also told by the neo-Catholic establishment (which likes to pick up where the Vatican leaves off) that anyone who even sets foot in a chapel operated by the SSPX is also "schismatic" and "excommunicated." (Even the Vatican officially ruled against the Archbishop of Honolulu, who declared 6 laypeople "excommunicated" for simply having their children confirmed in an SSPX chapel by an SSPX bishop. Thus, it is clearly seen that the neo-Catholic establishment goes beyond Vatican pronouncements.)

Fast forward to September 28, 2000, about a year ago. In an interview with the Vatican's Cardinal Roger Etchegaray, president of the Central Committee of the Great Jubilee, reminisced about his marvelous trip to Red China, where he celebrated Mass in a Marian shrine stolen from loyal Catholics by the Red Chinese and turned over to the Catholic Patriotic Association (CPA) - a pseudo-church created by the Red Chinese regime in 1957 to replace the Catholic Church, which it declared "illegal."

The CPA constitution expressly forbids loyalty to the Pope. The CPA's handpicked communist-controlled bishops have consecrated not four, but more than one hundred successor bishops without a papal mandate. The CPA issued a "pastoral letter" in 1995 calling on Chinese Catholics to support China's population control policy, including forced-abortion. The Red Chinese regime has designated the CPA as the "official" Catholic Church and has viciously persecuted bishops, priests and laity who refuse to join it, but rather remain loyal to the Pope in underground "house" churches.

Has the Vatican declared the CPA and its bishops to be schismatic and excommunicated, as it did in the Lefebvre case? Not on your life. Quite the contrary, in his interview Cardinal Etchegaray said merely that if the illicit consecration of bishops by the CPA "is repeated, there is a risk of impeding the rapprochement among Catholics. I had the opportunity to say it clearly to the official [CPA] bishops of Beijing and Nanjing." If it is repeated then there will be a risk of "impeding" rapprochement? That's it? This is the extent of the Vatican's censure of one hundred illicit espicopal consecrations by a blatantly schismatic, communist-controlled organization that rejects communion with Rome and promotes forced abortion?

Oh, but it is even worse, dear reader. Not only did Etchegaray not condemn the CPA schism, he pronounced CPA members to be loyal to the Holy Father! Read it for yourself: "The fact that I recognized the fidelity to the Pope of the Catholics of the official [CPA] church, can in no way diminish my recognition of the heroic fidelity of the silent Church." Ah, so the members of a communist controlled, pro-abortion church have fidelity to the Pope - even though their written constitution expressly rejects fidelity to the Pope! - whereas the persecuted Catholics who refuse to join the CPA have heroic fidelity. But both groups are faithful to the Pope. Please! This is a gross insult - an objective sin - against the loyal members of China's Catholic underground. Cardinal Kung spent thirty years in solitary confinement rather than submit to Communist Chinese control over the Catholic Church; he would not utter one word dictated to him by his communist captors in order to gain his own release. Cardinal Etchegaray is spitting on Cardinal Kung's grave.

So, here we stand: The Vatican refuses to condemn the schism of the 100 communist-controlled bishops of the Red Chinese CPA, yet Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, who was instrumental in the conversion of much of West Africa, was immediately cast into outer darkness for consecrating four bishops in an effort to preserve some semblance of Catholic tradition - as we all knew it before "the great renewal of Vatican II" began. This is the essence of the liberal's double-standard: no enemies to the left, and nothing but enemies to the right.

Today, some 13 years after the four consecrations by Lefebvre, the Vatican remains officially silent about the schism of the abortion-condoning CPA bishops in China, issues apologies to the Red Chinese regime for the supposed sins of Christian missionaries, and continues to treat the traditional Latin liturgy as if it were a strain of anthrax that must be hermetically sealed off from the general population of the Church.

What madness. Our Lady of Fatima, intercede for us!