What Anti-Semitism Problem in Traddery?

Simcha Fisher really sums up what happened in the shocking circus that erupted in her comboxes yesterday:

If I could just briefly recap what happened in my combox today:
I wrote an article saying, “You know, when you go around smearing poop on your head all the time, you smell bad.”
150 commenters then eagerly leaped up, smeared poop on their heads, and said, “Ha-HA! What do you say to THAT, Ms. Fischer?”
Um, you win? I guess?

There are lots of examples from that festival of insane, vicious, and paranoid Jew-hatred, rationalization, denial, anti-semitic tropes about the stingy Jews and how it never happened and besides they deserved it, but I think I’ll just let this one stand as the ne plus ultra of what so many self-identified Traditionalists showed up to say:

You are pro-abortion and pro-sodomy because it’s popular and if it were popular to kick kikes around, you would be the coyest kike kicking cheer leader at the Catholic Register.

Traditionalism’s greatest enemies are found within Traddery, not in some shadowy conspiracy outside it.

No.  Really.

Scratch a Reactionary, Find a Jew-Hater
Because a fair number of Jew-hating bigots have been in my comboxes recently
God bless Simcha Fisher
Reactionaries aren't Jew-Hating Weirdos or Anything
  • http://prodigalnomore.wordpress.com The Ubiquitous

    … which is a tragedy only because Traditionalism where it is right is righter than just about anything of its kind.

    (Anti-semites have somehow found a home among traditionalists, but anti-semitism is hardly a part of traditionalism, as here understood.)

    • http://prodigalnomore.wordpress.com The Ubiquitous

      For the record? I have never met an anti-semite in person at all, and I spend a great deal of time around traditional Catholics. Methinks the “anti-semitism” problem in traddery is very, very overblown, seen only by those who spend time around certain SSPX bishops or a certain amount of time online. It has far, far more volume than substance.

      Most trads are probably just plain unaware that there is a problem, and not in the sense that they are accustomed to it. Rather, in the sense that they do not spend time reading about certain SSPX bishops, or do not spend time online. It is not that they are oblivious or supportive but that they have never met an anti-semite at all, ever.

      • the mouse

        I’ve never met an anti-semite, either, so I agree: “far more volume than substance” – well-said! The Trads I know would steer clear of anti-semites, if they ever met one. It is a shame that the EF is being smeared by this controversy.

        • Mark Shea

          The EF is not being smeared by this controversy. The EF is being smeared by anti-semites who self-identify as Traditionalist. Instead of complaining about those who call them out, join in calling them out. Simcha did nothing to smear the EF. It was the nutjob anti-semites in her comboxes who did that.

        • Ivan Kamenski

          Want to prove that people who believe X are racist loons? Find a few anonymous combox comments by people who appear to believe X and appear to be racist loons, and you have all the proof you need for your smear job. When there’s a will there’s a way.

          One could use this very simple strategy to smear opponents of waterboarding; the Huffington post would be a goldmine of loony comments by opponents of waterboarding; it would be dishonest and sleazy, but one could do it.

          • Mark Shea

            It’s not hard. Condemn anti-semitism or bathe yourself in tears of self-pity when somebody else does. You, like so many of the lunatics in Simcha’s comboxes, choose the latter route.

      • wineinthewater

        I wonder if there is some other social phenomenon here. I spend *some* time, not a lot, around serious Traditionalists and I have never encountered a traditionalist group/community *without* encountering antisemitism. Certainly not everyone, far from everyone, but I’ve never been able to enter the Traditionalist world without encountering it. And I’ve noticed the more Rad-Trad they tend, the more likely, more pervasive and more intense the antisemitism.

    • Mark Shea

      Anybody, when they are right, are right. A pro-abortion Catholic may be right about something, but that doesn’t make him right aboiut abortion. But it is the peculiar arrogance of Traditionalism to habitually speak as though their rightness makes them superior to the rest of the Church and excuses them when they are dreadfully and disastrously wrong. Meanwhile, the issue here is where they are wrong in tolerating and excusing the nutjobs who poured into Simcha’s comboxes.

      • http://prodigalnomore.wordpress.com The Ubiquitous

        Anybody, when they are right, are right.

        It is a turn of phrase, which here underlines the idea the depth of the issue of traditionalism. To call the traditions of the Roman Rite an “issue” would undersell it. &c., &c.

        I do not absolve anti-semitism. I abhor it, as I have mentioned elsewhere.

        The EF is being smeared by anti-semites who self-identify as Traditionalist.

        This may not be the fairest thing Mark Shea has ever said on the topic of traditionalism, but it ranks well.

        • Mark Shea

          Excellent. I’m glad you abhor it. Well done!

      • Chris

        Including Deacon James Russell, obviously, from the gist of your response to him at NCRegister. Why do you suppose he’s trying to cover for and excuse the anti-Semites? Is he a Traditionalist/traditionalist, however that term is defined? Perhaps you should name other names for the benefit of your readers.

  • http://www.todayinthedoyle.blogspot.com Brendan Doyle

    There are some clearly anti-semite traddies. But I wouldn’t lump in with them those who disagree with Vatican II’s teaching on religious freedom and the Jews.

    A far more common problem with traddies is an anti-woman approach. The horror that a female reader, extraordinary minister of communion or altar server evokes is beyond the mere disagreements over liturgy. And when they start talking about how distracting females are at Mass and shouldn’t wear trousers etc it becomes a little bit disturbingly like the muslims who want women segregated and in burkas.

    • Andy, Bad Person

      I’m not sure it’s always anti-woman. Some people have at least passable arguments for not wanting women in the sanctuary, and though I don’t agree with them, they’re not always anti-woman.

      It’s the complete lack of perspective that gets them here. When you have self-described Trads minimizing or denying the brutal murder of millions of people, who then get their underwear up in knots over a Scripture reader in a skirt (or worse yet, NOT in a skirt), there’s a breakdown.

    • Longinus

      It’s hardly anti-woman, merely pro-tradition. There are certain roles that men have, and certain roles that women have. Traditionally altar servers are boys; avoiding scandal was one reason, and it also helps emphasize the vocation of the priesthood for young men. And as a teenage boy, I can assure you that women do tend to be a bit distracting at Mass (though I must admit the fault lies more with my own lack of discipline, of course). Women are also some of the most vocal of traditionalists–especially the Italian ones.

      • pittsburgh mama

        I’m not Brendan, but I agree with his assessment. I have no problem with the arguments you’ve presented here (and find myself largely in agreement with them even as someone who wouldn’t identify as a traditionalist), but I have found quite frequently that *some* traditionalists don’t stop at the “men and women are different and have different roles and that should be reflected liturgically” and it becomes “women shouldn’t do this because they aren’t worthy of it.” Well, none of us are, but that’s because of our broken humanness, not because of our genitals.

        It’s clericalism, but in the opposite way that more liberal elements of the Church have understood it: instead of trying to have the laity “take over” liturgical functions because they’re erroneously presumed to be the only ones that matter, liturgical functions must be protected from lay involvement not because it’s not the laity’s job, but because laypeople (and especially laywomen) are dirty and stupid and awful. Neither approach is okay, and I don’t think either approach honors liturgy.

        • Longinus

          Agreed, though I can’t say I’ve ever encountered those viewpoints amongst the traditionalists I hang out with. Must just be a pretty good bunch.

  • Noah D

    All right, Mrs. Fisher, challenge accepted!

    As I don’t have a blog, a congregation, or anything anyone else reads (no time), I’ll speak out here.

    Allow me, if you will, to establish my traditionalistbona fides (believe it or not, this is my life):
    I’m a convert to the Faith, and a traditionalist. I’m entering graduate school to study Medieval European history. I teach 5th/6th grade Religious Education in my parish. I sing in our newly formed Gregorian Chant Schola. I attend Mass at least weekly. I have a home chapel. I pray for the conversion of the Jews every Mass, and more. I’ve attended our parish’s men’s CRHP 3 times. I think that politicians who violate the tenets of the Faith in the exercise of their offices should be denied communion, and interdicted. I would rather have no music than ‘Gather’, let alone the pop drivel of ‘Choose Christ’ (we use both at my parish – pray for me). I pray for the reunification of the Church. I am a monarchist.

    Anti-semitism is vile moral poison, and evil. There is no excuse for it, and it should be, must be, shunned. The Jews are our elder siblings, and the Chosen People of God. To minimize or deny (or even more horrifically, to excuse) their historic treatment is to turn our backs on our family. Someone once asked, ‘Am I my brother’s keeper?’ I think that was authoritatively, definitively answered.

    Allow me, if you will, to continue: I went through all of the steps necessary to allow my marriage to be made licit in the eyes if the Church, as there was a disparity of cult – approval of my bishop, interviews with people who have known us for years, all those hoops and all the paperwork, because my beloved is a Jew.

    • Noah D

      Gah. Gotta watch my phrasing, repetitiveness, and phrasing…

  • calahalexander

    Ugh. I stayed out of her combox even after seeing the status update because..that. I feel ill. Between this and the intentional Gosnell media blackout, I’m starting to wonder how many people just happily live in a world of their own delusions. I used to think they were a small minority.

  • Kate

    I just find this whole thing to be so very sad. I’m also very skeptical of those who insist they’ve not seen or heard anti-Semitism around them (whether in their church circles or elsewhere). I’m not a traditionalist as it has been defined in this discussion. I am just a regular Catholic who attends a typical local parish. However, I come from a large, multi-faith extended family. We have Catholics, Jews, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and Christian and Missionary Alliance members. My first experience with anti-Semitism was when I was 8 years old and with a group of cousins and friends linked arms to protect my younger cousin and confront some anti-Semitic bullies down the street at the local donut shop. That was the first time I got to hear and my poor father had to explain the meaning of terms like k*ke and clipped pr**k to me and why it was directed to my cousin. I saw and heard grownups who were one way to my uncle to his face and anti-Semitic behind his back when he ran for citywide office. He lost, probably because he was Jewish. My cousin was taken to the Catholic church up the street when his parents left him with my grandmother because my grandmother wanted to secretly baptize him. Fortunately, the good pastor said not without his parents’ knowledge and permission. That was in western Massachusetts in the 1970s. Some years later, in eastern Massachusetts this time, I was part of a group of junior high students who acted as a guard for a Jewish student who was a target of some bullies (again, because he was Jewish) to ensure his safety between classes. This was during the 1980s. My father strove mightily to instill a respect for all people – and taught us kids that anti-Semitism, racism, sexism, and any other kind of prejudice was wrong. As a result, each one of us ended up in positions of defending and standing up for people who got picked on or bullied for such things. Unfortunately, my father could not eliminate my mother’s anti-Semitism, nor that of her parents. When I was working in downtown Boston, as a recent college graduate, I again saw the ugly specter of anti-Semitism rear its head at a series of protests at an abortion clinic kitty corner to the office in which I worked. These protesters were from a number of groups, mostly Operation Rescue. At these protests, there was usually a group of people and at least one priest praying the rosary. However, in that same group were some people from some “Polish National” group with some really hateful anti-Semitic signs that really upset a Jewish co-worker. So me, and some of the other Catholics in the office spoke to the group, and asked the priest since he would be a person of authority to ask these people to remove their signs, leave, and to tell them that anti-Semitism is wrong. It took more than one protest and more than one confrontation to get any action and the offending signs gone. It’s very sad that it took more than one request and a week to get compliance. Anti-Semitism is still alive and well, just hidden. I saw Simcha’s comment box, wanted to leave this story there, but couldn’t with all that others had written there. I am saddened, disgusted and what’s more, really turned off.

    I despise anti-Semitism. Anti-Semites hate Jesus as well, because – news flash – He was a Jew! I don’t care what the Talmud says or any other anti-Christian sentiment expressed within Judaism says. Jesus made it clear that we are to respond to hate with love. History has shown over the history of Christianity that we have definitely given our Jewish brothers and sisters every reason to fear and yes hate us. Our own words and actions over the centuries have only hardened their hearts more and yet people today in 2013 still blame THEM?!! Seriously? Some ambassadors for Christ we are. Every hate filled word, every hate filled action, every forced conversion, every killing, beating, or other maltreatment of our Jewish brothers and sisters we have committed or let others do in our name we will be answerable for. If our job is to be salt and light for the world, and to bring salvation to all, then anything we think, do, or don’t do that causes another person to stumble and to reject our message is something for which we will have to answer. I shudder to think of how much pain and harm has been caused by so many in this discussion. As a parent and a catechist, I see I still have so much to do to remove the scourge of hatred and vile anti-Semitism from our Church. I’m just so very sad at how so much farther we have to go.

    Thanks for letting me participate here, Mr. Shea. I’ve posted comments to your blog before, so I felt safest commenting here.

    • Barbara

      Kate — In reply to “I don’t care what the Talmud says or any other anti-Christian sentiment expressed within Judaism”, why, with your very moving expressions of anger against Jew-hate, would you believe that there is any of that in the Talmud? There is not! There is no anti-Christianity in any of Judaism’s sacred texts. Unlike Christianity and Islam, Judaism teaches that each human being is to be respected in his or her path to righteousness. The Jew haters have invented this particular calumny along with all the others. Are you aware that in Israel, Christians have, by law, control over all of their holy places, as do Muslims? I call this beyond generous, considering Christian treatment of Jews throughout the last couple of millenia. I do not mean to lecture you. You appear from the passion of your message to be one of the very few Christians who view this history with moral outrage. Please, please, do not believe what people with malevolent intentions say about anything having to do with the Jewish people. Just because lots and lots of Christians say monstrous things about the Talmud does not make it so.

      • Kate

        Thanks, Barbara. There was some particular quotation somewhere along the way in this discussion, which crosses several blogs and several discussions, only some of them here, and I was referring to that quotation, which you’ve clarified as nonsense. As for Israel, I am most definitely aware of what you’ve shared. I should know much, much better than to assume. My apologies to you and yours. I really, truly appreciate the correction and knowledge. I should have known better. Thanks for sharing your knowledge and expertise in this matter.

  • Knower

    From my admittedly cursory reading here, my understanding is this: Some anti-semites have sincerely claimed to not be anti-semitic, because they have re-defined “anti-semitism” as racial anti-semitism. (This was the anti-semitism of the skeptic Voltaire.) So those who are anti-Jewish on what they think are religious grounds, define themselves out of being anti-semitic.
    This language of theirs is in contrast to Nazi propaganda in the ’30s and/or ’40s, which was avowedly anti-semitic and proud of it — holding up for praise “history’s two great anti-semites, Martin Luther and Adolf Hitler.”

  • Pete Vere

    Mark, the following is modified from comments I wrote on your facebook concerning this thread:

    Radtrads have become a vocal minority online because they are ignored or isolated within the local trad chapel. This is pretty much my experience today when I visit trad chapels.

    Now I normally don’t defend the SSPX or Bishop Fellay, being a staunch defender of the papacy, but I have to give them credit for the “zero tolerance” policy they have taken toward anti-semitism among their faithful in recent years. In part, I think, because Rene Lefebvre – Archbishop Lefebvre’s father – was a victim of the Holocaust, having died a prisoner in a Nazi concentration camp for his part in the French Resistance. This past year has seen Fellay finally expel Bishop Williamson (leader of radtrad Holocaust denial) from the SSPX after increasingly strict house arrest, as well as other SSPX clergy and laity and who support Williamson.

    In fact, radtrads are so upset at Fellay and the SSPX leadership’s growing intolerance of anti-semitism that they are now accusing Fellay and his close supporters (especially Dr. Max Krah, the lay German lawyer who oversees their fundraising and financial management) of being secret Jewish operatives plotting to undermine the traditionalist cause from within.

    I thought Krah’s response in a recent Remnant interview to these accusations was perfect:

    Siscoe: So you’re not Jewish? No Jewish background? You were baptized a Catholic as a child?

    Krah: Of course, I am a Catholic. That’s it. About these accusations of being Jewish, I´d like to tell a story about when Charles Chaplin came to Germany in the early 1930’s. A lot of people from Berlin came to see him, and Hitler was jealous. The Nazi newspapers wrote an article criticizing and shaming so many Germans for applauding a Jew. When Chaplin came back to Hollywood, he was asked why he had not declared that he is not Jewish. His answer was: if I would have denied it officially, I would have felt as if I was agreeing that there was something bad about being Jewish. Given the mentality of the people at the time, he said it would have only contributed to the work of the Nazi’s, and this is why he didn’t say “I am not Jewish”. I had a quite similar reaction when I first read these accusations about myself. I sent an email to a US priest of the SSPX and asked him what I should do, and he advised me to keep silent because there is definitely nothing bad about being of the same people as Jesus and Mary. Moreover, in the early times of Christianity, the front rows in churches were reserved to the Christians with Jewish roots. That said, I do not think there is anything bad about people having Jewish roots. I simply do not have it.

    • Mark Shea

      That’s good of Fellay and Krah. But the damning thing is that such an interview was felt to be necessary by the Remnant. In normal, healthy Catholic culture, interviews are not predicated on the subtext, “Please clarify for our concerned readers whether or not you have Jew blood or are in some way in league with the Jews.” That the question has to be addressed for a Trad audience is itself a powerful diagnostic of how sick with Jew obsession Traddery is.

  • MaryMargaret

    Mark, apparently NCRegister has cut off comments on Simcha’s post. Cannot imagine why! Just wanted you to know that I never thought you were talking to me in your comment. I think we agree that this totally idiotic attitude of, “Yeah, I hate the Jewish religion, but not the Jews” is stupid and outrageous. I also think that those who use Papa Francesco to prove this nonsense, should be ashamed. God Bless you. Love your blog.

    • Mark Shea

      Thank you. I think that thread will stand as a permanent monument to everything Simcha was saying. Insane. Thanks for being a light in a dark place.

      • MaryMargaret

        Thanks, Mark. I don’t think of myself as such (a light in a dark place), but I am brought to tears by Catholics denigrating the Jews. And, worse, behaving as though “those people” deserved it, somehow. Turns my stomach.

      • GM

        Mark, I’m not sure why my last post did not go through. Maybe it’s because of the links I attached.

        The first link was regarding Simcha Fisher and the Seder Meals. Its available on patheos. Apparently she has celebrated 35 of them.

        The second link also covered Simcha Fisher on Seder Meals. At the end of Seder there’s a prayer related to the phrase “Next Year in Jerusalem”. She mentioned, “But for us kids, there was no incongruity: Growing up Hebrew Catholics just meant having much more FUN on Easter than anyone else.”

        The Third link was from AudioSancto.org where EF Homilies can be heard. There is a couple of Mass homilies related to Seder meals warning Catholics that is sin objectively speaking to celebrate Seder Meals. The title of the homily is– The Christian Seder Meal: A Violation of the 1st Commandment.

        I mention this because you have a lot of people that read your blog, many are Roman Catholic. Simcha Fisher is in the same category as yourself. Shouldn’t Catholics heed the warning of the voice of Mother Church coming from a priest very faithful to Her and the Pope? Is it scandal to promote violation of the 1st Commandment?

        Should Catholics speak up about Christian Seder Meals being a Violation of the 1st Commandment?

        St Teresa Benedicta, Ora Pro Nobis

        • Mark Shea

          As far as I can see, there is no problem with a Jewish Christian celebrating a Seder meal so long as they do not treat it as though it is salvific or a replacement for the sacraments, just as there is nothing wrong (theologically) with a parent who chooses to circumcise their child for medical reason. A Seder can be celebrated as a sort of living tutorial in how the Old Testament rites foreshadowed the realities of the New Covenant. Instead of running around spreading accusations and gossip, why not ask Simcha if she thinks a Seder is salvific or a replacement for the Eucharist. When she laugh in your face at the very suggestion, why not then apologize for what you just wrote here?

          • GM

            Mark, I am not spreading accusations and gossip. My initial post that was moderated and did not go through linked to the patheos and NCR page. It also had the direct link to the homily by the Roman Catholic Priest regarding Catholics violating the 1st Commandment if they celebrate Seder meals. Why are accusing me of spreading gossip?

            The priest did not say it is okay to celebrate Christian Seder Meals–he DID NOT make a distinction in Jewish or non-Jewish. If it is a sin against the 1st Commandment, does it matter if: one is Jewish, is trying to perform a living tutorial foreshadowed in the OT but fulfilled in the NT?

            Also, you write, “As far as I can see, there is no problem with a Jewish Christian celebrating a Seder meal so long as they do not treat it as though it is salvific or a replacement for the sacraments, …” That’s as far as YOU can see. This priest sees it otherwise. He confects the sacraments, he is the one who has to hear confession and absolve or retain sin–You are not an official representative of the Church as a priest. If what he speaks about is true, could you be in grave danger of scandalizing your readers? Could your readers? I know you cannot do what the priest does–confect the Eucharist and Absolve sin.

            I don’t think Simcha believes Seders are salvific or replacements for the Eucharist. She is a Roman Catholic and imagine she would chuckle at the question. What’s not worth laughing about is scandalizing His sheep.

            The homily is clear and concise and maybe 18 min long or so. I can post the link for convenience. If I’m not allowed to post it then it can be found at audiosancto.org with the search term Seder.

            Can I get an apology from you for accusing me of spreading accusations and gossip? I explained above that my initial post did not go through maybe because of the links to the sources. I have all three for you if you need them.

            • Mark Shea

              The priest is entitled to his opinion. But I am aware of no teaching of Holy Church that says this custom cannot be observed if the person celebrating it is not treating the rite as salvific. If you have a problem with it, you should go to Simcha, not show up in my combox to talk about it behind her back and act as though it is a foregone conclusion that she is committing blasphemy.

              And that you choose to do it in the context of a post in which somebody insulted her as a “kike” just adds to the overall impression that Traditionalism seems to be dominated by people with a screw loose.

              • GM

                I posted here because you linked to her page. And your last sentence “Traditionalism’s greatest enemies are found within Traddery, not in some shadowy conspiracy outside it.”–considering what you wrote, are we as readers of your blog to consider this priest an enemy? Are the sheep under this priest’s watch to consider him an enemy? You dismiss the priests homily as “opinion” and I guess that’s okay with you but when he states it is against the First Commandment a lot of people would be curious about why he said that. The homily was preached in 2009 and 2011. Listen to the homily and tell me if that priest’s opinion is true and Church Teaching.

                You could forward this post to Simcha if you want but I went to her page because you linked me there. So I figure you can handle the traffic. I also found a couple of other posts by Simcha Fisher publicly stating she celebrates them. Source 1, Patheos. Source 2, NCR. It triggered a memory of the sermon I mention in Source 3 by a priest. You not being aware of Church Teaching does not warrant you telling Catholics its okay to celebrate Seder Meals–it is either true or false that it is a mortal sin. The priest quotes St Thomas Aquinas in this regard–a good source for Church Teaching I think.

                You accused me of spreading gossip and accusations. Is that true?

                • Mark Shea

                  You chose to introduce this priest into the conversation, not me.

                  If people are curious about why he holds the opinions he has, they need to ask him.

                  The issue *here* is your choice to barge into a thread about a good Catholic woman being called a “kike” and introduce the charge of blasphemy against her. The priest does not do that, you do.

                  It is not *my* job to forward to Simcha false charges that *you* choose prefer against her.

                  Yes, it is gossip and accusation to charge her with blasphemy. You should take it up with her, not tell me to do your dirty work. I am perfectly satisfied that a Christian from a Jewish heritage, celebrating Passover as a custom in honor of her culture and not as a substitute for Christ and his sacraments, is committing no sin. If you think otherwise, you need to take it up with her, not go behind her back on some other blog.

                  • GM

                    Here are the three links I tried to upload the first time. And they are not accusations from me. Neither is it gossip. These sources are public knowledge. You make it seem like gossip and accusations by blocking the links to her actual writing! I did not accuse her of anything. And I brought the priest up because his message was very clear. You suggested I go to her but it really is not about her. She was an example of Catholcs practicing Seder Meals. Is a homily by a priest teaching it is a sin an example of enemies in “traddery”?

                    Referring to Simcha as a kike is deplorable! But I do not think that is common language amongst EF Catholics.

                    Simcha Fisher celebrated “35 Passover Seders”

                    Simcha Fisher “Next Year in Jerusalem”

                    Roman Catholic Priest Mass Homily:
                    The Christian Seder Meal IS A Violation of the 1st Commandment

                    • Mark Shea

                      Celebrating a Seder is not problematic when it is done as Simcha does it. It is not treated as a Church liturgy. It is clear it is not seen as salvific or as a replacement for the sacraments. It is clear that it is not being celebrated in order to say that keeping Jewish rites makes you an extra super truly true Christian who is superior to the unwashed. It is clear, in a word, that it is a tip of the hat to her Jewish cultural background and not as a rite for trying to be justified by the law. There is no sin or harm in that.

                    • GM

                      Mark, thank you for allowing the links to post. I think the priest covers what you’re pointing out clearly–and he does not agree with what you suggest. Sin is not a matter of opinion one to another.

                      What comes off as bashing, “traddery” and there being enemies in its midst gives the impression that this faithful priest preaching the homily above is an example of what you describe. It is priests like this that the Church needs–not relativistic effeminate milquetoast ones. Many priests are afraid to address the Jewish topics–what is it they they fear?

                      Many Catholics are confused when it comes to evangelizing their neighbors, speaking the truth to our Jewish neighbors can be even more intimidating. Especially with all of the heat generated with such inflammatory remarks about traddery or traditionalism or whatever–these words are ambiguous and clarify little when we speak of Jews that need to convert. Some people work with Jews and the company they work is owned by Jews. When confronted with anti-Catholic sentiments or a face value dismissal of Roman Catholicism because they claim Jews have been persecuted by the Church for 2000 years; how is a Catholic suppose to stay faithful to the claims of the Church? Should they prove they are not anti-Semites by appealing to Christian Seder Meals and explain to them what Jewish Catholics Are allowed to do? Some are afraid and deny the faith because they might get fired. Many Jews know what the claims of the Church are and that it teaches Jews have to convert to make it. Placating them by telling them they can still do religious Jewish rituals because they are Jews comes off like adulterated varnished Catholic truth. This is akin to denying Jesus before men and it feels perilous.

                      I think the priest is correct and preaches what he does because he is a shepherd and will be judged severely. Catholics are not allowed to violate the commandments without jeopardizing their eternal salvation. The priest made that clear. Cow towing to political correctness is the sin of respecting man and its mortal. That’s not in the Catholics job description.

                      From Tertia in the Roman Breviary 3/13:

                      “Then shall the just stand with great constancy against those that have afflicted them, and taken away their labours” Wis 5:1

                      I appreciate your response. Thank you for taking the time.

                      God Bless you

                    • Mark Shea

                      No. I said not one word about this priest in the blog entry. *You* chose to drag him into the discussion and *you* chose to claim that I was bashing him. He does not say one single word about Simcha. *You* chose to take what he said and claim that Simcha is condemned by him and then demand that I choose between him and Simcha. You. You. You. This has nothing to do with the priest and it has nothing to do with Simcha. It has to do with *your* choice to try to set up a dichotomy between Simcha and this priest and then put me in the middle.

                      It *may* be that he would indeed say that Simcha is violating the first commandment. If so, that’s his wrong opinion and I reject it. But at present, it is only *your* wrong opinion. Instead of wasting time accusing a good Catholic woman of blasphemy as a way of piling on top of somebody else calling her a kike, why not consider the possibility that her celebration of a Seder simply does not constitute blasphemy unless she intends by it to claim that the ceremonial laws of Moses are salvific. Your “feelings” don’t mean diddlysquat. A choice to feel offended and censorious on your part does not constitute a spiritual crisis on my part nor on Simcha’s part.

                  • GM

                    The priest drug in Thomas Aquinas and showed the relationship between the participation of Catholics in Seder Meals and the sin of superstition and therefore the First Commandment.

                    The priest’s relevance is related to the question of: Is this priest an enemy in traddery/traditionalism midst because the content of that sermon is Church Teaching? Who says its a wrong opinion? You? He referred his listeners to St Thomas Aquinas.

                    There is no dichotomy I’m creating. It is a real dichotomy and its between two propositions:

                    1) Seder Meals are Sacrilegious

                    2) Seder Meals are not Sacrilegious

                    Participating in a Seder meal even in a non liturgical way is sacrilegious from what I gather from how this priest is quoting St Thomas Aquinas. I want to submit to the Teaching of the Church. Not dismiss it as opinion.

                    I’m not calling Simcha a kike! Is saying something about Seder Meals somehow related to calling her that?
                    Does this have to do with the condemnation of Catholics participating in Seder Meals because its tied to Jewishness?

                    Listen to the homily and tell us if this homily is an example of an enemy in traddery’s midst.

                    • Mark Shea

                      I didn’t say you were calling her a kike. I said you are calling her a blasphemer. And you are trying to set up a “Let you and him fight” scenario between me and this priest.

                      Seder meals *may* be sacriligious if they are celebrated in order to deny that Christ is salvific. If they are merely celebrated as a way of paying honor to one’s Jewish culture they are not. If a Mick like me can hoist some green beer on St. Patrick’s day and and Italian can cheer for Columbus and Isabella, there’s no reason a Jewish Christian can’t do something to honor his culture of origin, so long as in doing so it’s not being claimed that keeping the law of Moses is what saves you.

                      Why do you pick out Jews and Jews alone as somehow being suspect when they do something to celebrate their culture? Why only Jews? Why is the focus only there?

                      Can you see why Traddery continues to come off as Jew-obsessed? Do you get it yet?

                    • Mark Shea

                      Here’s the bottom line: The American bishops have addressed this question:

                      The USCCB document God’s Mercy Endures Forever states the following:

                      It is becoming familiar in many parishes and Catholic homes to participate in a Passover Seder during Holy Week. This practice can have educational and spiritual value (GMEF 28).

                      So. You can elevate one priest’s private opinion to the level of Holy Writ and use it to unjustly bash a good woman as a blasphemer, or you can acknowledge that the Church has not forbidden Catholics to celebrate Seders, so long as it is done in the right spirit. Unless you have concrete evidence that Simcha is doing so in the wrong spirit, you should stop charging her with blasphemy and superstition.

                    • GM

                      This is not about my personal feelings. And you have an obligation as a Catholic to not run roughshod over topics like this. Every idle word. I imagine many people read what you say so you have a huge responsibility with your blog apostolate.

                      That quote is followed immediately with an important qualification. And your readers deserve to see the second sentence that immediately follows.

                      “28. It is becoming familiar in many parishes and Catholic homes to participate in a Passover Seder during Holy Week. This practice can have educational and spiritual value. It is wrong, however, to “baptize” the Seder by ending it with New Testament readings about the Last Supper or, worse, turn it into a prologue to the Eucharist. Such mergings distort both traditions.”

                      Any sense of “restaging” the Last Supper of the Lord Jesus should be avoided …. The rites of the Triduum are the [Church's] annual memorial of the events of Jesus’ dying and rising (Bishops’ Committee on the Liturgy Newsletter, March 1980, p. 12).”

                      Broad brushing and suggesting we as Catholics are likely to to find ant-Semitism rampant at EF parishes is unfair. An opinion, yes. Not a fair one.

                    • Mark Shea

                      It is absolutely about your personal feelings and you yourself said so above. “This is akin to denying Jesus before men and it feels perilous.” You are the judge, jury and executioner declaring that a good Catholic woman is denying Jesus on the basis of your “feelings”.

                    • GM

                      Mark, I used the word “feel” maybe once in this whole give and take. You asserted something about my feelings mean diddly squat–I think you brought feelings into this. Scroll back and read carefully.

                      First, you write, “It is absolutely about your personal feelings and you yourself said so above.”

                      Response: Negative. You said I said so.

                      Second, you quote me saying,
                      “This is akin to denying Jesus before men and it feels perilous.”

                      Response: Denying Jesus before men DOES have a “perilous feel” to it. Don’t obfuscate my choice of words and make this about my personal feelings.

                      Here: per·il·ous /ˈperələs/
                      Full of danger or risk.
                      Exposed to imminent risk of disaster or ruin.
                      dangerous – risky – hazardous – unsafe – parlous

                      Third, you are interpreting what I said incorrectly. The perilous feeling is related to denying Jesus before men–not my personal feelings.

                      I imagine most properly functioning Catholics would agree. Even non-Catholics.

                      Fourth, you add, “You are the judge, jury and executioner declaring that a good Catholic woman is denying Jesus on the basis of your “feelings”.”

                      Response: In Persona Christi the priest serves as that–in the Confessional. Retaining or absolving sins. Not me!

                      I am not judging a good Catholic woman is denying Jesus. I am not God and have no access to her interior motives. Good well meaning Catholics violate all kind of commandments. But Catholics need to be in a state of sanctifying grace to make it–we should concern ourselves about remaining in that state.

                      Is it a sin for Catholics to heed the voice of a good-faithful to the Church-and-Pope priest’s admonition?

                      That’s what this is about. According to you this Traditional Priest gave his “opinion” regarding sin against the first Commandment. Many sheep under his care at the parish level or abroad take his advice and root out mortal and venial sins to the glory of God.

                      Confession! In an EF parish it is available before, during and after mass everyday throughout the year. It’s that serious. No mortal sins to confess then confess venial ones? Depending on what a person is dealing with Faithful priests tell you get there often: once a week, every two weeks, a month–to receive the graces! Root out vice strive towards virtue. Be holy!

                      If it is a sin to participate in a Seder meal as the priest in the homily describes, then how about just dealing with it. Go to confession and stop. There’s no anti-Semitism because Traditionalist want to stay in a state of sanctifying grace and listen to this good priest.

                      Are you warning people against homilies like this because they come from priests out of Traddery?

                      Do you have a problem with a homily that shows participation in Seder Meals is a sin against the First Commandment?

                      Or should the priest promote the celebration of Seder Meals to placate you and others like yourself?

                      More importantly, have you listened to the homily? What did you think?

                    • Mark Shea

                      Simcha Fisher does not deny Jesus before men. Indeed, she professes him very admirably. So the rest of your Star Chamber bushwah is null and void.

    • M. Forrest

      “I think we agree that this totally idiotic attitude of, ‘Yeah, I hate the Jewish religion, but not the Jews’ is stupid and outrageous.”

      As does the Church reject that attitude.

      The Vatican’s guidelines for implementing Nostra Aetate §4 speak of “our Jewish brothers”, “sound relations between Catholics and their Jewish brothers”, while noting “the spiritual bonds and historical links binding the Church to Judaism.”

      John Paul II referred to the Jewish people as “our dearly beloved brothers”, our “elder brothers in the faith of Abraham” and even stated that “the Jewish religion is not ‘extrinsic’ to us, but in a certain way is ‘intrinsic’ to our own religion” and “with Judaism, therefore, we have a relationship which we do not have with any other religion.”

      Recently, Pope Benedict XVI repeatedly used familial language in relation to the Jewish people. He referred to them as “these children of yours [God's]” while reflecting on our “genuine brotherhood with [the Jewish people]“, “our common roots.. and the rich spiritual patrimony that we share”, “our common heritage” and “the solidarity which binds the Church to the Jewish people ‘at the level of their spiritual identity’” He also repudiated “the scourge of…anti-Judaism.”

      • MaryMargaret

        Yes, i know this. I am well aware that the Catholic Church knows the roots from which we grow. My point is, that even if no one but Jews were murdered in the Shoah, it would still stink of evil. If no Jews, but only Catholics, or Gypsies, or pagans or anyone were murdered for their race, religion or ethnicity were murdered, it would still be a stink of evil. Murder is a horrible sin. And, yes, the Church recognizes this, and also recognizes that some Catholics collaborated, murdered Jews, or sent them to their death. And calls this out as the evil that is was. Those who say that it was justified, or that, somehow, these people deserved it, are continuing to perpetrate evil. They must be called out..and, even more so, if they espouse the Catholic faith.

        • M. Forrest

          I was supplying that information to buttress your point, MaryMargaret. In particular, I was focused on those who “hate the Jewish religion but not Jews.” The Church doesn’t support such a distinction – as though one is fine and the other is not.

          • MaryMargaret

            Yes, my point, too. Thanks.

  • M. Forrest

    Traditionalists could use more statements like this one (below) from Chris Ferrara.

    Also, as seems to be implied in his critique, I think it’s natural to wonder what leads some people to even venture into the area of Holocaust revisionism and denial in the first place. The very fact of being drawn to such a point of view, let alone becoming adamant about it, seems suggestive. And to what end, exactly? One doesn’t just accidentally happen across such material.


    ….Anyone with even a superficial knowledge of the Eichmann trial knows that he did not contest the evidence against him. His defense team did not even cross-examine the prosecution’s witnesses, but merely raised the sole defense that their client was “following orders.”

    Eichmann’s estimate of six million aside, consider only the numbers from Poland, where some 3.3 million Jews resided when Hitler rose to power. Given the extermination of 91% of that population by the SS as commonly estimated (including 850,000 victims at Treblinka), in Poland alone roughly three million Jews were exterminated. It is easy to see how Eichmann arrived at the number six million and why that number is generally viewed as an accurate death toll.

    I have no doubt that the Holocaust revisionist beehive on the Internet will be buzzing angrily over what I have written here. If these characters want to swing into action as the legal defense team for the Hitler regime, looking to poke holes in this article, then to put it colloquially they can knock themselves out. Even if I were wrong in some particular, so what? The issue here is why a Catholic bishop in the most sensitive of positions should be venturing into this vexed area, as if there were some moral imperative to set the number of Jewish victims of Hitler as low as possible…..

    Traditionalists have not refrained from critical observations concerning certain statements and actions of the conciliar popes. That criticism is in keeping with the due liberty of the members of the Mystical Body, and indeed their duty to speak out when they believe in conscience that the common good of the Church is being harmed, even should that harm involve acts or omissions of the Supreme Pontiff himself. It would a fortiori be a dereliction of duty for traditionalists not to exercise that same liberty with respect to statements from within our ‘movement’ merely because they come from a fellow traditionalist, even if he were a bishop. For to remain silent in the face of what Bishop Williamson has said would be to endanger the entire cause to which we have dedicated ourselves by allowing it to be attached to his errors.

    Bishop Williamson has eliminated himself —and for no good reason—as a credible public spokesman for the Society in the Catholic or secular communications media, or in any other significant public forums open to other traditional clergy.

    Not only this newspaper, but every journal of traditional Catholic opinion, and above all the Society itself, must clearly and unequivocally declare—as I do here and now—that Holocaust revisionism, wacky conspiracy theories, and other such nonsense will have no part in the traditionalist movement. We must also implore Bishop Williamson to reconsider and personally repudiate the outrageous statements he has published to the world despite the many entreaties that he cease and desist. This is not a question of the Bishop’s freedom of opinion, but rather of the consequences to countless innocent bystanders from a heedless exercise of that freedom. Yes, the Bishop has spoken only for himself; but others, however unjustly, will be made to pay the price for what he has said, and they will go on paying it for a long time to come. The Bishop should have foreseen this, but now it is too late to prevent the damage. All he can do is make amends. If he cares about the Church and the traditionalist faithful, as he surely does, then he will not allow himself to become a stumbling block on the road ahead.

    End quote


  • M. Forrest

    Pope Benedict XVI: “Any denial or minimisation of this terrible crime [the Holocaust] is intolerable and altogether unacceptable.” (see here: http://www.ewtn.com/vnews/getstory.asp?number=93707 )

Pope Benedict XVI: “I have come to stand in silence before this monument, erected to honor the memory of the millions of Jews killed in the horrific tragedy of the Shoah. They lost their lives, but they will never lose their names: these are indelibly etched in the hearts of their loved ones, their surviving fellow prisoners, and all those determined never to allow such an atrocity to disgrace mankind again. Most of all, their names are forever fixed in the memory of Almighty God…May their suffering never be denied, belittled or forgotten!” (Yad Vashem, May 11, 2009. The full text of the speech may be viewed here: http://www.radiovaticana.org/en1/Articolo.asp?c=286623 )

Pope Benedict XVI: “It is right and fitting that, during my stay in Israel, I will have the opportunity to honor the memory of the six million Jewish vicitims of the Shoah, and to pray that humanity will never again witness a crime of such magnitude.” (Ben Gurion Airport, May 11, 2009. The full text of the speech may be viewed here: http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/benedict_xvi/speeches/2009/may/documents/hf_ben-xvi_spe_20090511_welcome-tel-aviv_en.html)

  • Ryan O’Shea

    I am shocked and grieved by the lack of charity exhibited in so many comboxes by so many purported faithful. I am new to the faith, love latin, long to see high liturgy, smell incense and hear heavenly chant and all the division I encounter in thread comments hurts. As a Protestant in a flower box it was easy to condemn religion as the seeming cause of so much entitlement among the faithful, among those who were “in”-but now, out in the field, I see the wheat and the tares precisely as our Lord illustrated, growing right alongside the other. Adopted into the family and born again from above by Baptism, we all have rights to the household and its riches. But Heaven and Hell are both at the party of homecoming and this ingrafted branch is doing all he can to abide in the vine, lest he be removed, cast into the fire and burned.
    We are judged by charity, from which judgment not even our words on the internet are expempt.

    I love the latin mass, NO or EF. I obey the Pope. I receive the deposit of the faith as articulated by the Magisterium.
    I am not an anti-semite.
    I will not self-identify as Traditionalist.
    Viva Papa Francesco!

    • Mark Shea

      God love you, Ryan. It sounds like you have your head screwed on straight, thanks be to God! Keep on living the life of a disciple of Jesus in his Holy Church!

  • Artemius

    “Bayou Ben” over on Simcha Fisher’s blog seems to give a pretty convincing explanation that you, Simcha Fisher, and Dawn Eden have misinterpreted Marcelo Gonzalez.

  • MaryMargaret

    Umm..no. he very cleverly avoids a clear statement about what actually happened. Avoidance, by putting it onto “historians”? Admits that millions of Jews were “killed”, while not admitting that they were murdered..sorry doesn’t do it for me. Those people were targeted both for their religion and their race/ethnicity. Either/or is absolutely horrible and all Catholics should say that it is what it is. It really is not that bloody difficult, is it?