In his interview with DICI on March 12, 2021, Fr. Davide Pagliarani, Superior General of the Society of Saint Pius X, affirmed: “The doctrinal and moral rout of recent years is a good illustration of the inferiority complex that men of the Church maintain vis-à-vis the modern world.” The following is a commentary by Fr. Alain Lorans.
This remark shows how much the conciliar aggiornamento is dependent on a psychological attitude which mixes blissful admiration of modernity and thinly disguised disapproval of Tradition.
For more than 50 years this admiration has manifested itself in irenic optimism, and disapproval through repeated repentance.
To make this new relationship with the world acceptable, the Council wanted to be pastoral and not doctrinal. According to it, doctrine is dogmatic, therefore rigid, and pastoral is flexible, therefore merciful.
But they omit saying that the authors of this revolution have a complex about triumphant modernity and are embarrassed by what they view as oppressive Tradition.
Today the new pastors are starry-eyed about ecology. Pastoral care has become bio-Amazonian: we must save the planet.
Formerly the Church was primarily concerned with saving souls, but it must evolve, discern the “signs of the times,” which now have Greta Thunberg’s braids and the Pachamama’s chubbiness.
What is the result of this update or, more precisely, of adapting to current tastes? The media influence of the Church today is inversely proportional to her doctrinal and moral influence.
She is displayed in the newspapers and on the airwaves, but is dying in empty seminaries and deserted churches, with a poverty-stricken catechesis and a desecrated liturgy.
We only hear the dissonant chords of pastoral cacophony: some bishops give communion to “remarried” divorced people, others refuse it; some priests bless same-sex unions, others condemn them ... And the Pope invites pastoral mercy.
It is not contemporary society that has a complex, it is the clerics who have a complex. In fact, the new pastorality rests on an inferiority complex.
An unacknowledged complex, because unmentionable. For it manifests, fundamentally, a loss of faith: men of the Church espouse the ideas of the world, forgetting that the Church is the bride of Christ.
Can we cure it? St. Paul wrote to the Romans: “be not conformed to this world; but be reformed in the newness of your mind, that you may prove what is the good, and the acceptable, and the perfect will of God,” (Rom.12:2).
The Romans of today would be well inspired to follow this salutary teaching, by transforming themselves “by the renewal of the spirit,” and by updating themselves to “what is the good, and the acceptable, and the perfect will of God.”