I wrote then:
"It is important to read all of what Cardinal Burke wrote and to read it slowly and carefully. He is not condemning the exhortation, but he is certainly not praising it either. His approach is clearly one of a Canonist. It is reasoned and rational. He makes it clear, it is the "opinion" of Francis, it is not infallible, it is not magisterial. Reading between the lines, one can surmise, he is disgusted."
It is my view, that we have not heard the last on this from Cardinal Burke, nor have we heard what he really thinks. If he is anything, he is a faithful and true Bishop, that has been proven again and again. He is also wise and a Canonist and sees the long view. I have no doubt, that in time, the right time, we will hear more from this man.
I present here, a letter which I have received from someone who has suffered at the hands of certain priests and prelates in ways unimaginable and who received only kindness and mercy from the one pictured above.
The Few, the Faithful, the Traumatised
The so called fight-or-flight response originates in the autonomic nervous system – that part of everyone which acts unconsciously, responding to a deeply ingrained biological urge to protect oneself from imminent harm. This system is present in both humans and animals, the difference being that humans have the gift of reason, and are largely able to moderate through their conscious mind the autonomic urges to protect oneself. When a person is traumatized, ostracized, and emotionally or physically beaten down, the PTSD that results inhibits the ability of the rational mind to intervene in these processes.
In the years since the Second Vatican Council, the Church has been attacked by dark forces, the most insidious of which, “the Spirit of Vatican II”, (which is in complete opposition to the actual Council) “has entered the church through some crack or fissure”. These dark forces have inspired legions of evil and wicked bishops and careerist priests to join forces to batter down by whatever means necessary those who have tried to hold back the advancement of the forces of Baal into the Holy of Holies.
Looking back along the road the church has travelled since the Council, one may observe the battered and bloody spiritual corpses that are strewn along its length. These were those faithful, priests and lay alike, who tried to resist those forces, but were vanquished by the darkness. And so having our rational mind unable to fully function because of trauma, we revert to our instincts – we fight ferociously and indiscriminately or we flee the battle in an attempt to circle the wagons and isolate our families in an extreme way, from what is happening. Those of us who are still around, still faithful, have been traumatized by having to witness such evil by the hands that have been anointed to offer the Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. A truly Satanic perversion of grace indeed. How can we not be traumatized? How can we not be fearful? How can we not be angry, suspicious, and even paranoid? We have most, if not all, the features of PTSD.
Our rational mind and soul is so beaten up that it is often not strong enough to overpower the instinctual urge to attack that which we perceive is the source of our trauma. We began to act like animals, relying on pure instinct, without the aid of reason. This is what happens when the faithful Catholics are cornered, isolated, and poked with the stick of heresy by the very men who should be their shepherds and pastors: they scratch and bite at everyone who may approach to offer to help, even their friends. They become paranoid and see in everyone who might not fully agree with their approach to what is a common problem as an adversary. I have PTSD, and I am doing well. I have my fight-or-flight response under control, but many of my friends do not, and some of them have started turning on me in the post A-L frenzy. How do we combat this? PRAY PRAY PRAY before you have conversations. Fast from things you are entitled to. Mortify your senses, and most importantly, as often as you can, get on your knees before Our Lord in the Most Blessed Sacrament and hurl your hurt, your agonies, your betrayal, and your doubts at the foot of the altar. If you ask Him to bear this burden with you He will. Our trials, sufferings, and agonies have NO VALUE except to the extent that we conform them to the Passion of Our Lord. That ability, given by God Himself when He created us, is what makes us different from animals. And this advice from a saintly Bishop from LaCrosse, Wisconsin is what saved my soul from turning in on itself in anger. Cardinal Burke has been the subject of attack these days. Having recovered from my PTSD to a point where my rational soul is back in control, I must say, having known him personally for many years, that he deserves the benefit of the doubt: because he knows things we don't, and he’s playing the long game. I'd bet my life on that. What he certainly isn’t doing is caving or compromising, although those of us who are traumatized and have not sufficiently recovered our rationality can’t see that, and it’s not their fault. It’s the fault of the men who caused the trauma in the first place.
I may find the first two paragraphs of his piece in the NCR difficult to swallow as well, and I find it hard to accept his proposition that A-L is somehow a non-magisterial document. I would certainly like to hear him expound on those particular areas because there is certainly more than meets the eye. I may ask him privately, as my “Ghostly Father”. He has an infinitely greater chance of being correct than I simply because he is so much holier than I.
But if my choice is to publicly attack him and not give him the benefit of the doubt (if ANYONE deserves that, it is Burke), then the problem lies with my sinful pride, my own rash judgement, and not Burke's character or faithfulness to tradition. So I’m NOT going to start attacking the only bishop who ever cared about my immortal soul. I'm not willing to do to him what they accuse him of doing to us.