Catholic Culture Overview
Catholic Culture Overview

Out, out

By Diogenes ( articles ) | Mar 05, 2005

Remember "the spirit of Vatican II" -- you know, the penumbra emanating from those conciliar decrees that the Holy Spirit meant to get the council fathers to write, but forgot?

Well, boys and girls, now we have a new arrival calling itself "the spirit of Church law."

"It's against the whole spirit of Church law," said Monsignor Kenneth Lasch, a retired canon lawyer in Morristown, N.J.

Monsignor Ken is referring to Lincoln Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz's excommunication of those who belong to heretical, schismatic, and anti-Catholic organizations, including Call to Action, Masons, Lefebvrists, Planned Parenthood, and Catholics for a Free Choice.

"It's against the whole spirit of Church law!" By an interesting coincidence, the spirit of canon law contradicts the letter of law in the same way that the spirit of the Council negates what the constitutions actually say. Of course lawyers and fathers of ecumenical councils are notoriously obsessive about precision of the language in those decrees they intend to be directive. So you won't find "the spirit" in the text, no matter how hard you strain to read between the lines. It's a mystagogical, Mithraic cult kind of thing -- for initiates only -- the kind of thing revealed to one in a sauna with Paul Marcoux and a quart of Cutty Sark.

To read Britney Spears's groundbreaking juridical analysis of Bruskewitz's implementation of Canon 752, go here. If the link fails to deliver, don't over-react. It was composed in accordance with the spirit of HTML code.

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