instruere...inlustrare...delectare Disputations

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Situational ultramontanism
When I was talking about [Topic A], my Holy Father was the stupidest man alive. When I turned to [Topic B], I was amazed at how much the old man had learned so quickly.
Among the many spectacles Catholics in America offer is the selective invocation of the authority of the Pope.

For example, we currently have people, who on most days will tell you unasked that they don't give a fig what some old, out-of-touch reactionary in Rome thinks, holding up the generally open attitude of the Holy See toward the Obama Administration as the right and perfect measure of Catholic conscience.

Well, no, that's not quite right. The Holy See provides the right-most measure of Catholic conscience. You can be quite a bit more open without their disapproval. Anywhere beyond the Vatican's boundary, though, and you've ceased being Catholic, while, paradoxically, being "more Catholic than the Pope."

I ask you, though: What is wrong with being more Catholic than the Pope?

Your answer will tell me what you mean by the expression, and then we can decide together who, if anyone, it fits.