The Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster Vincent Gerard Cardinal Nichols took to Twitter recently to berate Catholics who use the internet for the “bitterness, tittle-tattle, hostility and false witness that floods the digital world.”
Linking to a homily the Cardinal delivered at the Venerable English College in Rome on the 21st October 2018, he suggested “those who contribute” include “priests and deacons.”
“How easily the internet reduces us to digital tribes, engaged in a kind of bitter conflict which somehow seems acceptable because it is ‘out there’ somewhere. Even if we do not contribute, and sometimes we are worse than others, far too easily we amuse ourselves at the discomfort of others.”
The Cardinal said. And he has a point. But if “priests and Deacons” are among those who feel they have no alternative but to speak out, one can only, surely, conclude that our unity is under a massive attack. It is not hard to see that is clearly the case or to see why and how it is under attack.
When cardinals and bishops fail to speak up for Christ, someone has got to.
However, it is difficult not to see this as a direct comment on the discussion which has surrounded the deeply controversial Youth Synod (now being termed “the smuggler synod because of various nefarious interventions), which the Cardinal directly references at the beginning of his homily.
The Synod has promoted numerous problematic directions, as has been widely reported, and where there is controversy, there is inevitably discussion.
The same can be said of Cardinal Nichols himself, to the point where many faithful English & Welsh Catholics reading his tweets felt the need to comment on his questionable record; just look at the replies on Twitter.
I find it really difficult to understand why the Cardinal’s objective failure to hold to and transmit the Gospel message he is commissioned to does not, in his mind, constitute a disfigurement of the face of Christ, whilst faithful Catholics voicing legitimate concerns does?
Would you like some evidence? Click here to find it…
Cardinal Nichols is one of those members of the Hierarchy who appears to consider critics – however tactful, however, charitable in “tone” when they write to him – to be disreputable persons, low-life, of no importance, not worth bothering about, which would explain why, generally speaking he doesn’t reply to anyone who dares to question anything he says or does. Like his support for the Soho Masses, for example. You don’t like it? Tough… seems to be his attitude.
It’s hardly surprising, then, that he objects to such low-life (I count myself as such – I’ve written to him with no reply to show for my trouble) having a voice where our uncensored observations and concerns may be published.
My response on reading his tweets, then, was “too bad, Eminence… too (blankey blank) bad. Maybe if you and your brother bishops answered our letters of concern, we wouldn’t need to use social media….
What’s your response?
Or, to be fair [gritted teeth] does he have a point?