HE WILL NEVER WIN, AS OUR RESOLVE IS STRONGER THAN EVER, AS I WEAKEN, OUR LORD IN ME GROWS STRONGER. IN THE DARKEST DAYS, BRIGHTER GLOWS THE LIGHT FROM OUR LORD AND SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST.
WHERE WE ARE WEAK LORD, MAKE US STRONGER
WHERE THERE IS NO HOPE, FILL US WITH SUCCESS
WHERE ALL THE GATES ARE CLOSED, SMASH AND OPEN THEM
WHERE THERE IS NO SOUL, REBUILD AND FILL US WITH THY SPIRIT
Families Prepare to Leave OLL
Like the Magnificent Seven, the OLL rebels remain defiant to the end, condemning the corrupt reign of Msgr. Jim Lisante.
It is with a keen sense of poignancy that I write this post. From the kind of emails I've been receiving lately, I know some will greet this news with triumph and derision, but every honest Catholic, no matter what his theological/moral perspective, cannot in his heart rejoice about division and separation in the Mystical Body of Christ, the Catholic Church.
A few of the families who have worked the hardest and prayed the hardest to protect the legacy of doctrine and devotion maintained for so many years at Our Lady of Lourdes will be resigning from the parish after the last Children's Mass tomorrow.
These are families whose lives have been closely linked with this parish for close to two decades. Babies and baptisms, First Communions, and Confirmations, the passing of a few loved ones---all the moments of joy and sadness shared with the blessing of their priests in this church have created deep roots which are painful to extricate. A parish, however humble or imperfect, becomes, over the years, one's native spiritual home, a place where heart and spirit have been nourished and will always hold a treasured niche in collective family memories.
The reason for this resignation, painful as it is, is simple. If you'll forgive me for being blunt, they are leaving because they can no longer stand the underhanded, sinister environment which has infected this once proud parish. They are distressed by the complete lack of response to their concerns, and the total inaccessibility of their pastor. They cannot take the fact that after having a pastor who was present in the parish all the time to pray, offer sacrifice for sin, hear confessions, console the troubled, and annoint the sick, they now have a remote, uncaring, often duplicitous, theological lightweight, who is not only never around the parish, but also has absolutely zero interest in saying Mass, hearing confessions, or having much of anything to do with his flock.
These good people know in their hearts that the real problem with Jim Lisante is not the fact that he is a gay sympathizer or has little interest in being around the parish---they know that these are the symptoms of a priest who was formed at the worst possible moment in Immaculate Conception Seminary's history and thus has no real idea of why he is a priest at all.
They realize that to Msgr. Lisante, being a priest means being a slick media star, as well as being respected and admired by the zeitgeist for his predictable condemnations of evils like racism, bigoty, and homophobia, the only sins liberals will ever recognize.
These families know that, barring a deep conversion experience, Msgr. Lisante will never be a priest who will preach the hard truths of purity, chastity, sacrifice, prayer, love of Our Lady, honor of the Blessed Sacrament and fidelity to the Magisterium.
So, while their exodus may be cheered by the Lisante Team who have made no secret of their dislike and who will no doubt cheerfully "slam the door on their backs as they go," I can't help but wonder if, in their hearts, the Lisante Team is really comfortable with the fact that families like these are leaving. Like them or not, they have been faithful, regular supporters and volunteers at the parish, and, as their children get older, were poised to become even more committed parish members, able and willing to give even more time (and money, do you hear that, Msgr. Jim?) to their beloved church.
The Lisante Team may believe there are many Catholic families lined up waiting to replace these hardliners, eager to join the new and improved OLL, but so far, the parking lot seems emptier than ever at the Sunday Masses, and the few families that trickle in are merely interested in squeezing their Mass obligation in between soccer games.
One of the fathers delivered this parting shot in an email to me:
Jim Lisante is a "hireling," in the biblical sense of the term. In his person he serves as the perfect symbol of the gutting of the Church's dogmatic, moral, scriptural and ascetic theology which took place at Immaculate Conception in the late '60's and '70's, only to be replaced by a combination of the Protestant Reinhold Niebuhr and the New York Times, and, if they were in a particularly intellectual frame of mind, the latest trendy offerings from the liberal theologians featured in Time magazine.
He is, in short, an imposter, a liberal, self-centered socialite who has no business being the pastor of a parish, let alone a Catholic priest. The cold, sterile and efficient soccer moms will love him precisely because they know he will never challenge them spiritually or morally to give up their contraceptive lifestyle which eats away at both their families and the Church like a cancer.
The men who are addicted to pornography, sports, and their own pursuits will feel quite comfortable with him because he will encourage them to participate in fundraisers for the poor and campaigns against racism, but will never offer them the one thing they all need---the truths of the Catholic faith and the grace of God offered to a humble penitent in sacramental absolution.
In fighting him, we have not fought the Church, but the enemies of the Church.We will never accept him or anything to do with him. The truth is not in him because he is a disingenuous, unfeeling hack. Personally, I think he should be the chairman of the NY Republican party and not a Roman Catholic priest. His pastoral plan will be as successful as every other dissenting liberal priest has been. Good luck and so long, Monsignor Jim!
So let these good families, this "last wave" of old-fashioned, orthodox Catholics, go not so gently and quietly "into that good night," to quote Dylan Thomas. You won't be seeing their like again soon.
Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light . . .
Do not go gentle into that good night.
UP NEXT: The questions about this corrupt regime which Msgr. Lisante and Bishop Murphy refuse to answer. COME LORD JESUS, SAVE THE SOUL OF " OUR LADY OF LOURDES MASSAPEQUA PARK PARISH"