The Shared Treasure blog put an interesting post up July 28 about the dangers Ordinariate communities face in the guise of individuals who lure members offside into ideologies from the left or the right.
In The Tares Among the Wheat: the challenge to emergent communities The blogger writes:
Because many are currently small (like a mustard seed! – cf St. Mark 4:30–32) and enthusiastic, emergent faith communities are ready targets for aggressive individuals that seek to appropriate a community’s immediacy and energy.Extremists (too strong a descriptor?) insinuate themselves into a community and like malicious microbes infect their host, sapping its vitality and possibly dividing a community within itself or from the wider Church.Vade retro Satana; Numquam suade mihi vana.Sunt mala quae libas; Ipse venena bibas.Though an aspect or two of the extremists’ agenda might have merit, their actions largely detract from the mission of the Church, which is to:*
- invite new disciples into a life-giving relationship with Christ;
- nurture reverence and beauty in liturgy, so that the Ordinariate’s tradition of worship deepens the faith and authentic discipleship of all the faithful;
- model ecumenism, fostering the unity of the Church that our Lord prayed for (John 17:21);
- serve in evangelical charity by caring for those in need.Whether they be from the left or the right, power hungry pietists prey on the sympathies of generous believers and drag them into an acid pool of conspiracy theories and ideological battles. Historic events are frequently twisted to fit and reinforce a false narrative, and subsequently another narrative emerges, a chimera that is as malicious as it is alluring. Such conspiratorial traps drag or push believers into swamps of sectarian behaviour.