We aim to enjoy intelligent debates on our blog. The rules of this blog are simple and few:
- Please stick to the thread topic. Obviously, it is permitted to refer to related topics in any discussion but that is quite different from changing or ignoring the topic. Such off topic posts will be removed by the administrator. There is a General Discussion thread for anyone who wishes to comment on news other than the topics listed.
- Do not make nasty personal remarks. We can tell the difference between innocent banter and rudeness. Personally abusive or apparently deliberately provocative comments will be removed by the administrator.
- Crudities, even comparatively mild crudities, are not permitted. This is not because we are prudish or snobbish, but because we seek to create a Catholic ethos on this blog, with the highest possible standards, and your co-operation in achieving this will be greatly appreciated. Crudities offend against the commandments to purity (e.g. “thou shalt not commit adultery”) and will be removed by the administrator.
- Please do not post quotes from or links to sedevacantist sites. They will be deleted by the administrator.
- Do not address bloggers by their real names, without explicit permission. Usernames are the accepted convention in blogging. Please observe this convention on the Catholic Truth blog.
- Since the election of Pope Francis, there has been an escalation of the crisis in the Church to an unprecedented level, with the Pope himself being at the centre of much theological and ecclesiastical scandal. As a result, many writers and bloggers have slipped into the habit of referring to him as “Bergoglio”. We ask our bloggers to resist the temptation to refer to Pope Francis in this way. We may, of course, robustly express our concerns about his statements and behaviour but we must beware of giving the impression, either that we disrespect the papal office itself, OR that we have fallen into the error of thinking that we have the authority to decide that he is not the legitimate holder of the papal office (that he is not “a true pope”) and/or the authority to decide that he is the “anti-Christ”. Our authority stops at the right to correct and resist any errors about God and His Church taught by anyone, including a pope, and that is what we hope to do on this blog. So, please refer to the Pope as Pope Francis, the Pope, His Holiness or whatever legitimate title you choose and do not express views intended to debate his election. He IS the Pope – a very bad pope – and any sedevacantist arguments, that is, any attempt to raise issues surrounding the legitimacy of his papacy will be deleted as soon as the administrator sees them. We do not have the required authority to pronounce on his papacy, so that line of discussion is off limits here.
Trolls Have Souls
From time to time we receive contributions from people who are not Catholics; these range from Protestants belonging to various denominations, through to proclaimed atheists.
Each from their own perspective, naturally, seek to “de-convert” us, and they offer all the usual arguments to “prove” to us that we are deceived, whether it be the Protestant view that the Catholic Church has long gone astray, is wicked and so on, or – in the case of atheists – that even the most basic claims of Christendom are bogus. To those sincerely bent on “de-converting” us from our Catholic Faith, allow me to disabuse you: this will not happen – ever. If, despite this assurance, you want to stick around, read on…
All are welcome on this blog and we will do our best to engage with those who do not share our Catholic Faith. However, it is exasperating to discuss with someone who ignores or ridicules our responses. It is especially exasperating when we have spent time and energy researching a topic in order to address a particular question or criticism. It can test our Christian virtue to the limits to remain calm, as our policy demands: “Keep Calm & Talk To Trolls!”
We do our best to be as welcoming as possible to everyone, including possible trolls, lest we fit the following Gospel description: “For if you (love and) salute your brethren only, what reward shall you have? Do not also the heathens this?” (Matthew 5:46-47).
Shaking the dust from our feet and closing down a topic thread may ultimately be what we have to do to prevent acrimony developing, or when it seems that we are going round in circles with no apparent benefit to anyone. Please do not risk poisoning or worsening the atmosphere on the blog by publicly calling on the administrator to act against any individual. It is for the administrator to decide when the time is right to choose to either moderate the comments of individuals or terminate a topic thread.
In the meantime, anyone who feels they’ve had enough and doesn’t want to discuss any more with any particular blogger – be they Catholic, Protestant, agnostic or atheist – so be it. There is no “thou shalt blog” commandment. All we ask is that our Catholic and non-Catholic bloggers alike treat one another with courtesy and respect, while, of course, understanding that it is the work of Catholic Truth to robustly counter all false ideas and beliefs. We are not remotely part of the ecumenical (let’s all go along to get along) brigade. Still, providing facts and figures, with a dash of good humour is more impressive by far than the same facts and figures delivered with the textual equivalent of a Glasgow Kiss
We would ask all non-Catholic visitors to this site to bear in mind that our fundamental purpose is to report the crisis in the Church and the world and to try to make sense of it, primarily in light of the Fatima apparitions.
We do not exist in order to prove either that the Catholic Church is the one Church of Christ – an historical fact – or that God exists – a self-evident truth.
From time to time, in the context of a particular topic, some of our bloggers may well engage with those who claim to doubt these truths and on those occasions we will do our collective best to help answer the questions and concerns of the Church’s critics, despite the often apparent futility of our efforts, in human terms.
Our Lord gave no hope of converting everyone in the world: the masses would be more won by the spirit of the world than by Him. To share His life was to share His fate. The world would hate His followers, not because of evil in their lives, but precisely because of the absence of evil or rather their goodness. Goodness does not cause hatred, but it gives occasion for hatred to manifest itself. The holier and purer a life, the more it would attract malignity and hate. Mediocrity alone survives. Perfect Innocence must be crucified in the world where there is still evil. As the diseased eye dreads the light, so an evil conscience dreads goodness which reproves it.Fulton J. Sheen: Life of Christ, p.299
How can we answer to ourselves for the souls who have in our times lived and died in sin; the souls that have been lost and are now waiting for the judgment, seeing that for what we know, we were ordained to influence or reverse their present destiny and have not done it?Saint John Henry (Cardinal) Newman (1801-1890)