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Are Catholic Bloggers the Taliban?

Last week my brother called me and told me to read an article that he had found on Fr. Robert Barron's website, Word on FireThe post was titled, No Urge to Purge and it spoke about the Washington Times article titled, Catholic Bloggers aim to Purge Dissenters.  Fr. Barron in his post was seeking to defend the sensational claim made by the article which characterized Orthodox Catholic bloggers as being guilty of, "Taliban Catholicism" 

First off I was excited when I read both the articles because it helped to affirm one of my biggest motivations of starting this blog of defending the teachings of the Catholic Faith.  The subtitle of my blog even reads, Fighting the Good Fight One Minute at a time.  However, I was not thrilled by the characterization made by the article that compared Orthodox Catholic bloggers to the Taliban. This alleged claim is simply not true as Fr. Baron correctly elaborates.  (To read Fr. Barron's article click here, to read The Washington Post article click here.) 

In Fr. Barron's post he spoke about how blogging offered a new opportunity for faithful Catholics to express their views and to confront the erroneous teachings and ways of their leaders as he says,

"For the average amateur blogger this marvelous opportunity becomes a combination of an annual Christmas Letter writ large, a conduit for sharing, and portal into a virtual community that knows no bounds.
Those of us who have something to share in regard to our faith or questions as to the state of our local Church should not hide our light under a bushel, so to speak. Some people may have more of an agenda than others and some may possess a more strident style of communication than prudence calls for.. But this does not, for those of us ‘small-o’ orthodox bloggers, constitute a concerted witch hunt style effort to purge the Church of dissenters.
Though...this does give us a chance to push back against our more obnoxiously vociferous brothers and sisters who have hijacked the name ‘Catholic’ (no copyright; no trademark;) for their own irregular causes. For example, the quisling Frances Kissling and her Catholics for a Free Choice (now known as Catholics for Choice) receives an unfair amount of recognition and therefore an inappropriately projected degree of authority. Now the rest of us can find hope in the ease that Blogger or WordPress gives the small, unfunded, faithful Catholic a chance to speak the truth."
In his article Fr. Barron, explains that most Orthodox Catholic bloggers are not concerned about conducting witch hunts, or derive satisfaction from bringing down their local bishops. He argues instead that these types of bloggers are choosing "not to hide their light under a bushel" and are mostly motivated by more noble aims. Fr. Barron argues that the chief aim of this type of blogger is defending the truth of the Catholic faith, of holding those accountable who spread a mixed, watered down type of Catholicism.  

The most persuasive argument that Fr. Barron makes is that that the Internet, social media sites, and blogging offer wonderful, unbounded opportunities for the average Catholic to express themselves to a much larger audience.  Before the Internet a typical Catholic would have maybe written a letter to the local diocese, or most probably vent to various family members before finally losing steam.  The Internet now offers this person a chance to vent, but more importantly a chance to contribute to the global solution of the problem in the marketplace of ideas.

I am so grateful for the technology of the blog.  I couldn't imagine myself without having this pulpit to express, to share my opinions.  Without this unique forum, I would probably be some disgruntled, grouchy, Catholic, angry with the world, angry with my diocese, angry with my church.  Writing and expressing myself through this blog is my therapy, it keeps me sane, and bearable for those who live with me (my wife Renee) while at the same time providing me a powerful forum to defend the faith, and to hold those accountable who are not authentically following it.  
No I am not a Catholic Taliban. Just a Catholic.


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