In a story entitled Pope beatifies Paul VI, ‘great helmsman’ of Vatican II on October 19, EWTN News reported the beatification of Pope Paul VI by Pope Francis. “In this humility,” Pope Francis noted, “the grandeur of Blessed Paul VI shines forth: before the advent of a secularized and hostile society, he could hold fast, with farsightedness and wisdom – and at times alone – to the helm of the barque of Peter, while never losing his joy and his trust in the Lord.”
So, now, along with Pope Francis, we may call him Blessed Paul VI. We can now turn to his courageous teachings such as the encyclical Humanae Vitae with ever greater appreciation for his ability to view into the future. Blessed Paul VI authored other important encyclicals as well. For example here is an excerpt from Ecclesiam Suam:
“The Church itself is being engulfed and shaken by this tidal wave of change, for however much men may be committed to the Church, they are deeply affected by the climate of the world. They run the risk of becoming confused, bewildered and alarmed, and this is a state of affairs which strikes at the very roots of the Church. It drives many people to adopt the most outlandish views. They imagine that the Church should abdicate its proper role, and adopt an entirely new and unprecedented mode of existence. Modernism might be cited as an example. This is an error which is still making its appearance under various new guises, wholly inconsistent with any genuine religious expression. It is surely an attempt on the part of secular philosophies and secular trends to vitiate the true teaching and discipline of the Church of Christ.” ECCLESIAM SUAM, ENCYCLICAL OF POPE PAUL VI ON THE CHURCH, AUGUST 6, 1964
Blessed Paul VI possessed “farsightedness and wisdom” and could see that the Church (all of the Church even to individual parishes) is encountering a “tidal wave of change.” Is this not what we are experiencing at St. Peter’s. (Please refer to my October 6 post What Can Happen to a Parish in Four Months?) Are we not “becoming confused, bewildered and alarmed”?
Our new Pastor comes to us with a history and many charges have been made about him. Many of those are unfounded and poorly documented and they are not worthy to repeat. If, however, you research the matter, remaining entirely objective, you will find that Fr. Grinnell had a longstanding relationship with Virginians Organized for Interfaith Community Engagement (VOICE) http://www.voice-iaf.org/.
The three letters “IAF” in that URL stand for the Industrial Areas Foundation founded by Saul Alinsky. (There are links to both VOICE and the IAF on the right side of this page.) Please view the VOICE sight and research the role Fr. Grinnell has had with that organization. Consider what you find there and see if you find Catholic doctrine there or merely “secular philosophies.” Next, refer to the IAF sight and read about its background and its founder Saul Alinsky. Consider again if you are reading about Catholic doctrine or “secular philosophies.”
Once you have ascertained the character of IAF, VOICE, and Saul Alinsky then go to the link provided to the right for Rules for Radical Pastors. Consider that the article is listed under training material at the VOICE sight and consider Fr. Grinnell’s association with VOICE. When you have done all of that, consider the “tidal wave of change” that has come to St. Peter’s. Then ask yourself how much more change is to come and what form it will take.
Keep in mind the words of Blessed Paul VI, “It is surely an attempt on the part of secular philosophies and secular trends to vitiate the true teaching and discipline of the Church of Christ.”
Blessed Paul VI, pray for us.