Monday, 26 March 2012
That God actually created the patriarchal society of the Jews is a shock to many Christians, especially Catholics. That the Hebrews were one small group of Chosen People among many larger and stronger groupings, such as the Hittites and Assyrians, is forgotten, or never understood. The small Hebrew community was organized first under Moses, and then more so under Joshua and the High Priests. Leviticus is a good read for those who want the details. The Covenant came with many rules, but the primary purposes of God, if we can understand the Old Testament in light of the New, was to create a Nation of people who had a system of governance and hereditary priesthood which was male. Matriarchies dotted the ancient world, and one only needs to think of the religious aspects of female priestesses and the rules of sexual engagement these religions demanded. That God intervened and separated this type of occult power and created a People who had male leaders, male priests and the heads of the family were now male. Of course, the feminists hate all this and do their best to undermine this to the detriment of the Church and Church organization.
All of these is a denial of the Incarnation. And, a denial of the Revelation of the Old and New Testament is the keystone of Modernist Heresies. Some Catholics look at the stronger wording of patriarchal theology of the Evangelical Churches and want to remove themselves from those influences and even vocabularies. However, the basis for the patriarchy in the Church cannot be ignored or swept under the carpet. That Christ came as a Man into the world strengthens and indeed, fulfills the patriarchal structures, especially that of priest, as seen clearly in the theology of Hebrews.
That Christ is the High Priest and that an ordained priest is an "alter Christus" has been debated by the feminists for the past thirty years. The Popes who wrote against the Modernist errors warned us of this type of re-reading and reinterpretation of Scripture. That Christ was Divinely Chosen to be a priest, is worth following in the Epistle. I have remarked on the Order of Melchizedeck before on this blog.
The point here is not merely reminding all of the fact of the Incarnation, but that Christ ordained, with the Father and the Holy Ghost, (not the Creator and the Sustainer), that His Church be based on a patriarchal system. One can go back to the Covenant of Abraham and trace the chosing of leadership, through the hereditary and even non-hereditary positions of the sons of the Patriarchs. I say non-hereditary, as some of those chose were not the oldest son, as in the case of David, the King. Solomon was not the oldest son, either.
Some feminists do not want to use the matriarchy, but matristic. Having a woman-centered society involves keeping the maternal side as the controlling unit in passing down land or even names. In a government by mothers, or even women who are unmarried with children, this type of society decides on the rules in families, etc. I have had many Irish friends state that the Celtic families are ruled by the women in the families. I think some of the families in England are matriarchies.
Christian Tappe in Crisis Magazine online, a link which is in my blog list, has a brilliant article on the losing of religious freedom in America and comparing it with what happened in Cuba. It is really on the mark.Tappe refers to a 1960 article by George Sherman. Why do we not learn from history? Here is a section:
To isolate rather than destroy. To allow worship…and nothing else. Sound familiar? It should.
President Obama began using the term “freedom to worship” in his speech at Fort Hood in 2009, less than a year into his presidency. And he and his administration have notably continued to use this language—as opposed to “freedom of religion”—a significant difference in terms.
Furthermore, unless the new HHS mandate changes, many Catholic hospitals (and possibly colleges) will either have to compromise the very beliefs that make them Catholic hospitals (or colleges) or shut down. Or serve only Catholics, thus accomplishing a major step toward Catholic “isolation.”
In his piece from fifty years ago, Sherman noted, significantly: “Priests are the first to admit that large sections of the population have little religious training.” In other words, Castro pounced when the Church was already weak. Many so-called Catholics likely didn’t notice any changes. They likely agreed with Castro over the Church on certain policies. And the faithful? Well the faithful, recognizing their reduced numbers and the potential dangers the Castro regime brought, were concerned . . . yet happy they were “allowed” to worship.
And, just like that, the Catholic Church in Cuba was reduced to a bunch of harmless, pious old church ladies. Catholics could still worship, sure. But the hospitals, orphanages, schools, etc. that were run by the Church were taken over by the state. Soon after, Christians were barred from participating in government.
The Church in America is weak. Secularism has been chipping away at it for decades. In recent years, many Catholic orphanages have closed after being cut off from public funds because they would not promote abortion, contraception, and the like. And we already know the precarious state of Catholic hospitals and colleges.
Sherman begins his piece with a warning that the Church and the Castro regime were quickly moving toward a clash, but that “Both sides are extremely reluctant to turn to all-out warfare.” He goes on to write, “For the government it is a question of tactics. . . . The position of the Church is much weaker. It is fighting for its life.”
Sherman’s observation was dire, terrifying, and prescient . . . and it still applies today. Perhaps the Church is stronger now in the United States than it was then in Cuba, but not exponentially so. The Church here is indeed struggling. The bishops, led by Cardinal Dolan, have spoken out, but then again, as Sherman tells us, two of the leading archbishops in Cuba “demonstrated publicly against Soviet influence.”
For the Obama administration, just like in Castro’s fledgling Cuba, it is merely a matter of tactics. How to isolate the Church without inciting a riot. It’s a line that Obama and his administration are toeing, and they’ve come close to crossing it with the HHS mandate. And yet they seem to have caught their balance, rallying the support of the media, the “public,” and even a depressingly high number within the Church.