Where are the “liberal” Catholic bloggers?

Where are the “liberal” Catholic bloggers?

A friend asks the question: “Where are all the ‘progressive’ Catholic bloggers?” It’s a good question. Looking around the Net I haven’t found more than a couple of Catholic bloggers of the type who read the National Catholic Report or US Catholic and agree with what’s written there, or followers of Richard McBrien, or the like.

The vast majority, maybe 99 percent, of Catholic blogs are people who generally would be called “conservative,” or as I prefer, “orthodox.” Not that all of them are uniform in thought; there are plenty of disagreements among St. Blogs bloggers.

Also, there are plenty of “progressives” in the comments boxes, but none of them start blogs. Why is that?

The few examples I found were either rarely updated or even barely “progressive” or were just anti-blogs. By that I mean, blogs meant to insult and parody an orthodox Catholic blogger. I don’t really count that because it’s not constructive work to make fun of someone else’s views through distroting what they say. I would only count them if they espoused the blogger’s own views.

So where are all the “liberals”? Any ideas anyone?

I’ll start the ball rolling by suggesting that perhaps, since almost all of the Catholic and secular media reflect their views already, they don’t feel a need to provide their reactions. What do you think?

Written by
Domenico Bettinelli
11 comments
  • Dom wrote:

    “I’ll start the ball rolling by suggesting that perhaps, since almost all of the Catholic and secular media reflect their views already, they don’t feel a need to provide their reactions. What do you think?”

    I think that Joe Cecil, who posted above, doesn’t see it quite that way, Dom. He is unabashedly, as his URL says, a “liberal Catholic.” He is not, as he readily admits, faithful to the Magisterium. In fact, believing that the Internet is filled with, in his words, “conservatives, traditionalists, and ultramontane Catholic reactionaries,” he therefore started his blog.

    Can’t say that I can embrace much of what Joe writes.  In fact, he seems to embrace dissension in at least several cases. (Please note: I’m not using this blog to start any debate with Mr. Cecil…just offering an opinion.)

    That said, I can and will say that he seems to be far more energetic than, say, “the lady in the pew” who posts maybe once every few weeks. Compared to any blogger, dissenting or otherwise, the pew lady is downright lazy!

    Now, despite the claims of Karen and the “Wall of Fire,” I can’t find anything in either of these sites even remotely close to the dissidence displayed by Joe Cecil. If these two ladies think themselves as being “of a kind” with Mr. Cecil, they, in my opinion, are in error.

    Joe Cecil’s blog is in my opinion, an absolutely authentic, in your face, “I-take-issue-with-the-Magisterium” blog site.

    As far as I can see, he’s the only one.

  • Sorry Joe, but just because you say it’s so doesn’t make it so. You can bet all you want, but it doesn’t make your wild assertions true.

    Yes, the old shibboleth: Only liberals care about people; conservatives are heartless selfish monsters who only make a pretense at it.

  • Actually, in some ways Joe’s assertions, wild as they may seem to be, are in a way remarkably similar to (scroll up) David Kubiak’s thoughtful post.

    It may have been inadvertent, but Joe limns a major problem facing the Church in the U.S.: dissenters are running things. They ARE busy. And not just ladling out soup (and taking pictures of themselves while doing it) either. They’re also passing on their views to our children in the “Catholic” classroom, rewriting our liturgy, baking “eucharistic bread,” justifying homosexual activity, and, in short, trying to reinvent the Church.

    “Lose their jobs if they speak out publicly?” Hardly. They’ve been doing that for years, and from my view it’s only gained them promotions.

  • Why should anyone have to feel welcomed in order to share their point of view? If that were the case, there would be zero conservatives working in the media instead of the few that do.

  • “Go into the soup kitchens, and the conservatives are volunteering once a month, but a liberal is there day in and day out running the place.”

    That is a slam against conservatives. You are intimating that conservatives don’t volunteer in soup kitchens enough, that only liberals care enough to do the real work.

  • Wall,

    That is why liberal and conservative as descriptive terms can be inadequate. In fact, I don’t see any difference between your views and mine., and I consider myself conservative. I agree with everything there (except perhaps on the social teachings; I’d need to know more).

    What’s most important is orthodoxy. If you hold to the Church’s teachings, then you are orthodox. If you dissent from the Church’s teachings, you are heterodox.

  • Joe writes:

    “I’vce worked in several different soup kitchens and social service agencies run by the Church, and my experience is that the majority of the paid staff is more liberal than conservative, while the volunteer staff is more conservative than liberal. “

    Again, what Joe says jibes with my own observations. Anybody else remember the Howard Brown flap with Boston’s “Catholic” Charities?

    Joe adds:

    “I suppose that one could argue the liberals were in it for the money while the conservatives are giving their time away for free. “

    Tempting. But I wouldn’t argue that. I’d argue that dissenters were in it because they love the Church…except for her teaching on ________ [fill in the blank(s)] and are in it to effect change on the local level.

  • Quoting Karen:

    “_I_ don’t put the “progressive”, “liberal” label on myself”

    Quoting `Wall’:

    “I don’t call myself “progressive.” There is only a single issue with which I dissent from the Magisterium. “

    Yet both were quick enough to offer themselves as the answer to the subject line question in this thread. This, along with the lack of comments on the ladies’ blog sites, makes me wonder about the “I get hate mail” claim.

    Now, quoting Joe:

    “I am a progressive Roman Catholic with my own blog!”

    I’ve got far more respect for the dissenter who is honest and straightforward about it than I do for the “please don’t label us [even though we kinda don’t agree with the church on certain things]” folks.

    You’re mistaken about many things, Joe, but at least you let folks know where you stand.

  • “Kelly, what am I supposed to do? Make up something to disagree with the holy Church about?”

    No, Karen, God love you. I hate, normally, touchy-feely stuff, but, finally, I think I know what you’re talking about. Good Lord, I thought it was difficult to be a Boston Catholic…God forgive me for forgetting what it must be like in Milwaukee.

    There is, as you say, only one Catholic Church—only one church, really. But (and don’t think this isn’t difficult for me to say!) it isn’t where the bishop is. It’s where Jesus is.

    God has decreed, Karen, that our former archbishops, yours and mine, are no longer our archbishops. That may be hard to accept (it was for me) but accept it we must. We have no choice.

    What you must do, and what I must do, is to keep our former—FORMER—archbishops in our prayers. Bishop Weakland, Cardinal Law…how different they are in so many ways. Yet they are the same in that they are and always will be priests. Catholic priests. They are blessed, because they are priests. As are we, because of them.

    All in all, in my opinion, it sucks to lose a bishop. You’ve got your Dolan, I’ve got my O’Malley, and they are, no doubt, both fine men, fine priests. But it’s not easy, regardless, to say good-bye to an archbishop. That, I understand all too well. This is not the place to discuss their differences, I think.

    And I think maybe we’ve overdone our welcome in Domenico’s home, and may well be advised to continue, if you’d like, this conversation privately.

    In Christ,

    Kelly <————thanks, Dom!

  • But Godspy isn’t a blog, which is what this discussion is about. And we all seem to have gone far afield of the original question: why aren’t there more liberal bloggers?

    I think we’ve gotten some good answers though so unless someone has something new to offer, I think it’s best to move on.

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