|Why put money into something that|
Reflecting on this riddle, I recalled a 2016 article by Monsignor Charles Pope, and a public reply to that article by Father Z. In the article, Msgr. Pope states:
"Frankly, our problem in the Catholic Church today is not one of money, but of people. When only 30% of Catholics go to Mass and many of those give less than 2% of their income to the Church, many activities, buildings, and institutions can no longer be sustained or maintained."Why are people giving less than two percent? A few thoughts.
For starters, current Gen X and Millennial generations lack Boomer money. When it comes to talking about financial and material legacy, it would be negligent not to remind this audience of just how much the Baby Boomers, as a whole, have left following generations with nothing but smoking craters of debt.
Could it also be that many younger converts to Traditional Catholicism do not come from big families who were Catholic at all? Perhaps, rather, such converts come from Protestant or non-religious parents who likely never supported their conversion. Such individuals, then, are left adrift and on their own, black sheep who are outcasts in their own family. This is not Medieval Europe, after all--when the entire community poured themselves into the local church.
Other causes? Transcendental anti-materialism, perhaps? A cursory glance at the protestant scene reveals an egregious hunger for funds. Protestants are always having fundraisers, raffels, cookie drives...you name it. Whatever it takes to get that non-denominational gymnasium and nursery kiddie park built by the end of the 3rd quarter.
|Bare Minimum |
The new post Vatican II aesthetic.
Yet, there may be one more unspoken reason that people do not give impressive tithes in the collection plate. I think Fr. Z was spot on in his reaction to Msgr. Pope's article when he said:
"I think that strong-identity Catholics are demoralized. The weak-identity drift like corks bobbing on the stream. I suspect many of them belong to some other religion that has Catholic elements but… they are so squishy after decades of squishy preaching, squishy catechesis, squishy effeminate liturgy, cowardly leadership that they are… something, but not Catholic. Lately, however, I think that even hard-identity Catholics are becoming demoralized. You can only beat people so long until a supporting bone breaks."Now, with that in mind, consider the footage available from past decades where we see wrecking balls tear down old churches. Reflect on all of the times you read about how the beautiful interior of a parish was white-washed and modernized to accommodate the "beige modernism" of some liberal bishop. Remember, if you will, the stories of tall, beautiful, majestic cathedrals that the local Church authorities allow other religions to utilize and desecrate.
Imagine that your generation pours hundreds of thousands of dollars in to build a grand cathedral in your community. Your people expend a lot of time, energy, and volunteered hours to build such a grand edifice. And then, a generation later, and effeminate bishop comes along; and on a whim, he decides it's out of date and out of style. The building becomes abandoned, and later, demolished. The solid stone structure you thought would endure for centuries is bulldozed just like every other American pre-fab building. If that's what's going to happen, then why bother building it at all?
I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess that a lot of people simply don't trust the Catholic Church with their money. I'm betting that when that collection plate comes around, the parishioner thinks to himself "Hmm. I feel a bit guilty, but my money will just be wasted anyway." I can picture a parishioner sitting at the end of a pew, and next to him is a Catholic Relief Services "rice bowl" that you are supposed to put your money in. The person then says to themself, "Gosh. The CRS finances contraception, sterilizations, and abortions. If this parish is giving my money to the unCatholic CRS, what else are they doing with my money? I'll give them a $5 bill."
|St. Joseph's Catholic Church, Duncombe, Iowa|
Honestly, it does not surprise me in the least to see serious money go into private chapels, rather than into the collection plate. The whims of the post-Christian clergy is not the behavior of a Church built on a rock-solid foundation. Modernist priests have done much to diminish the faith and monetary contributions of the laity.
Monsignor Pope says:
"Evangelize or else close and die. It's a hard fact, but numbers matter. Too many in the Church today demand respect and support without showing the fruits that earn respect and that make support prudent and reasonable."So, you must somehow earn respect. I do not foresee any sudden reversal when it comes to tithing. And honestly, how are we expected to evangelize--in this utterly hostile, Catholic-hating, Hebraic-Puritan empire--when our very own pastors are set against us with their modernism and unstable fads? I really doubt that Traditional Catholics expect any kind of respect from their diocese, if the past 50 years has taught us anything. The carpet is pulled out from underneath us time and time again. And it's our job to stabilize the Church?
In this matter, I disagree with with Monsignor Charles Pope.