Counting both blogs and op-ed articles, today’s op-ed piece by Paul Elie is the 11th condemnatory article on the Catholic Church to have been published by the New York Times in the past 19 days.
As with so many Catholic malcontents, Elie’s parochialism allows him to think that his unhappiness is shared by everyone. “Resignation,” he says, is “what American Catholics are feeling about our faith.” He should speak for himself—most of us do not share his Commonweal affliction.
Elie has long been predicting that the Church is teetering. Two decades ago he was lamenting the fate of pro-abortion Catholic women, arguing that their voice needs to be heard. In 1994, after maintaining that the laity were in “deep dissent” over such issues, he appeared positively dazed over the success of a best-selling book by Pope John Paul II.
Living in an intellectual ghetto has consequences. In 1999, Elie named the following eight bishops or archbishops as the successor to Cardinal John O’Connor: Theodore McCarrick, Justin Rigali, Edwin O’Brien, Henry Mansell, Harry Flynn, Charles Chaput, Thomas Daily, and Francis Stafford. Bridgeport Bishop Edward Egan got the job.
Elie wants all Catholics to stop going to church during Lent. He’s leading the way: he is not going to his church, the Oratory Church of St. Boniface, this Sunday. He is threatening to go to a service with Quakers, Episcopalians, Jews, Muslims, or Baptists. For reasons I can’t understand, he is also threatening to go to a Zen monastery. Doesn’t he know that his happy parish has Zen Meditation every Thursday evening?
I have a tip for Elie. This Sunday at 1:00 p.m., the New York City Wiccan Family Temple is welcoming new members. I’m sure they would love to have him. La Tea is located at 107 Suffolk St. in Manhattan.