"A 61-year-old woman I've been corresponding with... has seen the faith of almost everyone in her life decimated by the post-conciliar Church. Her mother lost her faith after the changes (and I presume, is now deceased). She describes her own children as "godless". She is 'bitter and angry'.
"This is what the Church did. This is what men like Kasper and Maradiaga and Marx and the rest of them have done to His little ones. These are the stories that don't get told, because the people leave and are rarely heard from again. God forgive us for what -- and whom -- we have abandoned."
But, acknowledging the unimaginable losses the collapse of the Church has caused, there is something good to remember here. In the past people had the Faith handed to them, and it cost them little or nothing to accept and keep it. They were often given little instruction past that which is given to children. People followed the Faith because it was what their parents did, or because all their neighbourhood was Catholic or their friends or businesses were. I know nuns who said that the exodus from the convents really happened because they had been given no intellectual formation in the Faith either in their homes or schools or the novitiate. It was mainly about how to walk and hold your hands so you looked like a holy nun. She had been a Carmelite, and she said they were told they were not allowed to read Teresa, for fear it would give them airs.
The Asteroid wiped all that away, and the people who had received the Faith so easily dropped it just as easily. What you get for nothing is not valued, even if it is pearls.
And now the Faith is still there and can still be found, but it is no longer easy. The result of the post-Conciliar catastrophe has been as our friend above said, but it has also created a race of Catholic guerilla fighters of which we are the second and third generation, and who are now going to be called upon to carry the fight forward. The ferocity with which they have acquired and kept the Faith is going to be required by everyone.
There is no more cheap grace to be had for tuppence in all the shops. Now if you want to know what is true, you have to go looking for it, develop your mind and knowledge and exercise your intellect and will, which faculties had become nearly atrophied in the immediate pre-conciliar period. Now just getting to know what you need to know to be a merely practising Catholic requires almost heroic effort of will and powers of investigation, as well as taking the trouble to learn to tell the truth from the sweet lies nearly all the parishes and priests are peddling. Heroism has, essentially, become our baseline.
And then you have to exercise those muscles of will to hold on to it as the World turns on you like a horde of screaming savages. In a situation like this one, the people who know and hold to the Faith are the Charles Atlas of the Catholic world. And it is going to be true very soon that they are going to require all that strength to stand up to what is coming at us. Anger can be the fuel for much of the fire in the blood required to get this far, but indulging in bitterness is really just a means of avoiding the fight. "Bitterness" is really just a fancy word for sulking, and right now, if you are indulging it, you're sulking while everyone else is fighting a war. It's a variety of self-indulgence that we have no spare resources for.
It might not sound like I'm being sympathetic, but a great many of us have been forced to claw our way out of the Novusordoist fever swamps, and for a lot of us it has cost pretty dearly. I know someone who started asking awkward questions in her small working class town in eastern Canada, and eventually got to the point where she wanted to study at a small orthodox Catholic college. Her parents and family, all the friends she had grown up with, almost entirely disowned her when she came to the unavoidable conclusions.
She loves her family and her home town, but knows that there is no longer any place for her there and that she will probably have to spend the rest of her life living far away so she can receive the real sacraments. It was a horrible but ultimately heroic choice, and she made the right one, but it will never stop being hard.
One of the terrors of Traditionalism is that we learn at some point that the Faith makes a totally uncompromising demand. It is this choice that the happy-clappy Kasperian Church wants to hide and banish. But we are coming to a time in which heroism is going to be only the first rung, the bare minimum requirement to save our souls. Ours is a fearsome Faith, and the kind of choices my friend made are going to be forced on more and more of us. We can't expect everyone to make the right one.
We must get used to asking the question: "Which Faith are you willing to die for?" The religion of the Tango-Mass?
Or this one?
Our friend Ann Barnhardt offers a piece of advice that I think would be a good cure for a person's indulgence in bitterness:
"Our Lord Himself who has told many mystic saints and doctors of the Church the same thing: THINK AND PRAY ABOUT MY PASSION AND DEATH. Why? Because thinking about Our Lord’s torture, agony and excruciating death forces us to confront Him as a Person, True God AND True Man. Legal systems don’t sob until their capillaries burst. Philosophies don’t suffer the agony of unrequited love. Imaginary friends don’t lay down their lives. Bureaucracies don’t fight asphyxiation by pushing themselves up on their impaled feet.
Only a PERSON can do these things. Only a DIVINE PERSON did. And remember, He would go through His ENTIRE PASSION just for you alone, and He would go through it REPEATEDLY for you alone, in fact as many times as you assist at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, and even more. That is how much He PERSONALLY loves you, PERSONALLY.
And yes, I lost my mother to the Novusordoist revolution and the Sexual Revolution that Novusordoism is now embracing. She entered the Church in 1972 in Remi de Roo's Victoria, BC. They taught her that God wanted her to embrace the entire delusion, including the new sexual paradigm. In the end, it destroyed her life, and finally as she pursued what these evil people taught her, she contracted HPV and died of cervical cancer, estranged from me and everyone else in her family, addicted to and entirely engulfed in the post-60s Fantasy, refusing to the last minute to involve herself in reality.
One of the delusions of "bitterness" is that you alone have the right to complain. It whispers to you that your personal suffering is worse than everyone else's and that it absolves you of responsibility. But the War has left very few without scars.
Bitterness is a Fantasy. A life dedicated to the Real has no room for it.