Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Wiki Catholic weirdness

Some Google search led me to one Wiki page after another until I landed on these:

Pierre Martin Ngô Đình Thục

Old Catholic Church

The first man, I had heard of, read of but some of that information just floored me. I'm sure there is so much more to the story since this is a Cliff Notes version on Wiki.

The second link is full of twists and turns that took place before and during the Reformation. I was thinking they were an early sedevacantist group until I got to the photo of the woman priest(granted it jets through a historical timeline a bit). It seems it was a Borg-like offshoot of a once Catholic-taken-over-by-protestants section of the Netherlands. The Calvinists had such a stronghold in that region that even the devout Catholics had to practice in secret and began questioning papal authority. All of this fuss over papal infallibility? Here's a haunting excerpt:

The Old Catholic Church shares much doctrine and liturgy with the Roman Catholic Church, though liturgically it has tended to maintain the Tridentine Rite whereas Roman Catholicism has embraced the Novus Ordo. However, Old Catholicism tends to have a more liberal stance on most issues such as the ordination of women, homosexual activity, artificial contraception and (less frequently) liturgical reforms/innovations such as open communion.

Now my brain hurts. I have heard of the American Catholic Church and some similar groups but was not aware of the exact origins until now. Oddly enough, I have always identified myself as "Roman Catholic" when asked because there are so many splinter "catholic" denominations.

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