Sunday, July 31, 2011

Five good things about ecumenism
  • Good works in common like trying to bring our soldiers home from the foreign wars and non-government charitable work.
  • The two sides can thoroughly understand each other and, one hopes, stop trying to kill each other.
  • That said, because they now understand each other, everybody should know that corporate reunion can’t happen, when there clearly are two sides: Catholic/Protestant (infallible church); Roman Catholic/Orthodox (scope of the Pope); mainline/evangelical (duelling private judgements). So once you reach that understanding you can stop regular official talks except for occasional refresher courses.
  • So trying to convert each other, nicely but honestly, is fair game. For example the ordinariates for one side; gay weddings for the other. Or, relatively tiny in both cases, Eastern Catholics and Western Orthodox. We’re talking rival one true churches when you consider the mainline collectively as one (claiming absolute power to change anything by vote). Zero-sum game. Ecumenism = you-come-on-in-ism.
  • When the other Catholics you know are churchgoing Slavs and non-churchgoing Italians, it’s nice now and then to pun on the old Prayer Book, even if you don’t use it, and know somebody about your age who gets it.
BTW in the photo you can tell who the host and guest are by who’s vested and who’s in his choir habit, always so at these events.

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