Quite often, different people turn out to have been thinking about the same things, and in similar ways. An example of this in the liturgical field concerns the Reform of the Reform; and I commend The New Liturgical Movement and other blogs for giving this blog the credit for pieces I have written over recent weeks, as they now address the same subjects.
But I feel more miffed that nobody much seemed to take much account of two pieces I wrote a month ago about the reconciliation of the SSPX ... arguing that it should be seen as an ecumenical matter and followed with the same charity, urgency, and flexibility as the Holy See employs when dealing with other 'partners in dialogue'. Uncannily, this is now a headline issue because of the ecumenical outreach of the Holy Father to a Protestant group ... followed by an article (Archbold) in an American journal (NCR) arguing precisely the case I argued ... followed by the odd removal of that article by the proprietors of the journal concerned.
One rather wonders about that removal. Who leaned on whom? Or who thought that they might be leaned on by whom if they didn't delete the article first? Of course, there is a real difference between cosying up to evangelical Protestants and considering unity with fellow Catholics, as Anglican Catholics discovered when Benedict XVI had the courage to brave the storms of malevolence and erect the Ordinariates. I suppose there is even more toxicity surrounding the matter of the SSPX. In media and PR terms, suggesting unity with evangelical Protestants is like cuddling a bunny rabbit with soft, silky fur, while advocating overtures towards the SSPX more closely resembles fondling broken glass. This is at least partly because ecumenism is really the pursuit of internal Church politics by other means. Another thing that I explained quite recently.
I reprint below my two pieces on the SSPX, unchanged, and the second half of my piece on the Politics of Ecumenism.