Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Is There No Help For The Widow’s Son?

Hans Küng’s disparagement of Saint John Paul the Great’s Polishness made and make them the authentic voice of the age-old Teutonic racism against the Slavs; Küng only gets away with it because he is Swiss.

But what are we to make of his honouring by the Freemasons?

The Masonic Lodges were key to the circulation of the ideas that became the French Revolution against which all three of Gaullism, the non-Gaullist French Right and the non-Marxist French Left are to many extents ongoing reactions.

In the Latin world, the Masonic Lodges have ever since been organisational bases of attacks on the Church and on Her interests.

The Masonic Lodges were key to the circulation of the ideas against which the several States had to demand that the First Amendment to the American Constitution protect their respective Established Churches.

Freemasonry has been, and to some extent remains, part of petty anti-Catholicism in this country; it was, for example, why Catholics found it so difficult to secure promotion while working for the Consett Iron Company.

But it is impossible to imagine a band of men less likely to conspire to overthrow the economic, social, cultural and political order. Simply because it is impossible to imagine a band of men which better epitomised the economic, social, cultural and political order. 

Masonic influence over the Church in this country, and Catholic influence over the Masons, are both immemorial in certain places. I know of a ward where the only way to get anything done is through the Catholics within the Masons within the Labour Party.

This is not a post-Conciliar phenomenon: it has ever been thus, and several of the individuals in question are Latin Mass aficionados, while they are all indefatigable battlers for Catholic schools, pro-life, and so on.

All aspects of which I am told are fairly unusual but far from unique, whether now, or in the 1950s, or ever. A lot of people are surprised when one is surprised at them. Cardinal Heenan was known expressly to enjoin converts, including convert Anglican clergymen, to remain active in the Lodge.

Scotland is a different story, but I should not be at all surprised if Catholics were now the single largest bloc among English Freemasons, and had been for decades. In fact, I should be thoroughly surprised if that were not the case.

There are, and there certainly were, far fewer Catholics in the strongly Conservative areas where Freemasonry is also strongly Conservative. But even so, who knows how much influence might have been exercised against the Hard Right? Less, undeniably. But some, quite plausibly. 

The Lodge was an undeniable bulwark against the more-or-less Marxist tendencies in the strongly Labour areas where Freemasonry is also strongly Labour, so who knows if part of that was due to the influence of Catholic Social Teaching?

To them was and is addressed the message, formulated while he was still an Anglican clergyman, of Fr Walton Hannah, who had no time for lurid Masonic conspiracy theories.

It was precisely because the original Masonic rituals in this country had drawn heavily on the Book of Common Prayer, itself drawn heavily from Medieval and earlier sources, but had later been redacted to exclude expressions of orthodox Trinitarian and Christological doctrine, that they were now unconscionable to those who continued to adhere to that orthodoxy.

That argument is unanswerable. On these shores, we ought therefore to deploy that, and not detain ourselves with Abroad's lurid theories, or even lurid facts, for which Fr Hannah had no time.

But what of the far more politicised Freemasonry of the Continent and of its former Empires? The only recent example of a conspiracy of that kind has been based in Italy, although it was also actively in, among other places, Argentina.

That consisted precisely in the P2 Lodge's support for the Far Right. But then, of course it did.

The Far Right is the continuation of that which overthrew the old, organic, Catholic states of the Italian Peninsula, and the old, organic, often Catholic states of German-speaking Europe.

It did so in precisely the spirit of the French Revolution. In precisely the spirit of the attacks on the Church and on Her interests ever since.

And in precisely the spirit against which the several States had to demand that the First Amendment to the American Constitution protect their respective Established Churches.

Oddly enough, and yet somehow not, Hans Küng fits perfectly into the Freemasonry of these Islands rather than into that of  the Continent and of its former Empires.

He, too, has drawn directly and indirectly on Medieval and earlier sources, including the Bible itself, but has redacted them so as to exclude expressions of orthodox Trinitarian and Christological doctrine, rendering them unconscionable to those who continue to adhere to that orthodoxy.

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