#LaudatoSii: Hold Your Breath, Make a Wish, Count to Three

do908 laudato siTomorrow I will begin reading Laudato Sii, and I plan to tweet as I go. I’m already seeing the overheated freakouts online and it’s a sorry spectacle. Everyone needs to cut the crap, m’kay?

It seems like all we do lately is replay the right’s reaction to Mater et Magistra and the left’s reaction to Humanae Vitae. American Catholics need to be a little less American, and a little more Catholic. In case you hadn’t noticed, America hates us. It is the Church that will survive, and we’ll need people to keep their heads.

This time around, it’s the American right’s turn in the cafeteria line, and they’ve built a strong head of Francis-hatred over the last two years to power them through any qualms they may have about dissenting from an official exercise of the ordinary magisterium.

These are the actions of children. I don’t doubt there may be much to criticize in the document. If I do disagree with the Holy Father, I try to do so on point, without slotting it into some grand statement about how the Smoke of Satan Has Entered The Church. I read way too much of that already, and it sickens me.

I am a traditionalist conservative–the kind Republicans dismiss as a Paleocon. I am also a global warming skeptic. I expect to find points in Laudato Sii I do not agree with. I will read them with an open mind. That is: I will try to be Catholic first and American or conservative second. I will try to discuss them candidly yet with charity and respect for the office. Most of all, I will not imitate the left’s Magisterium of Me and pick and choose what to accept and what to reject.  I don’t expect any of this to be easy.

Let’s remember that Lumen Gentium doesn’t just apply to contraception and abortion:

This religious submission of mind and will must be shown in a special way to the authentic magisterium of the Roman Pontiff, even when he is not speaking ex cathedra; that is, it must be shown in such a way that his supreme magisterium is acknowledged with reverence, the judgments made by him are sincerely adhered to, according to his manifest mind and will. His mind and will in the matter may be known either from the character of the documents, from his frequent repetition of the same doctrine, or from his manner of speaking.

If you try to reconcile your faith and your politics, and if it’s your faith that gives, you’re worshiping the wrong God.

And before you read the new encyclical, maybe you should review this:

I also firmly accept and hold each and everything definitively proposed by the Church regarding teaching on faith and morals.

Moreover, I adhere with religious submission of will and intellect to the teachings which either the Roman Pontiff or the College of Bishops enunciate when they exercise their authentic Magisterium, even if they do not intend to proclaim these teachings by a definitive act.

Anyone suggesting that anything less is acceptable is the one letting the Smoke of Satan into the Church.

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