A gross breach of discipline

A gross breach of discipline

All our liturgy and sacraments were given by Christ through his apostolic successors. That is the great tradition of the Church. It is childish to insist that we should have these blessings the way we want, instead of accepting the spiritual blessings that the Church, which is filled with blessings and all goodness, gives us.

Martin Luther, the German, was prominent among those who disagreed with the official teachings of the Catholic Church and rebelled against the Church. He entered the Augustinian Order of the Catholic Church in 1505 and was a famous and learned monk who later rose to the rank of Superior.

From about 1516 he propagated anti-ecclesiastical studies and disobeyed his bishop in some respects. Many complaints against Fr. Martin Luther went to the Vatican, but the church took action against him after four years of serious study. In January 1521, Pope Leo X excommunicated him from the Catholic Church.

It is doubtful whether there is any other system in the world today that can rival the Catholic Church in terms of discipline. Orders and announcements from the Pope, the head of the Catholic Church, from the Vatican will reach the common believers in a few days through the congregants, cardinals, various diocesan bishops and parish vicars. Believing in the infallibility of the Pope in matters of faith, it is customary to obey his orders without questioning whether they are right or wrong. But there are mechanisms within the church to inform those who are dissatisfied with the orders.

While this is the tradition followed by the Catholic Church for centuries, the faithful have seen a video on social media and mainstream media of a few persons shouting at the senior Metropolitan of the Syro-Malabar Church, Mar Andrews Thazhath, who was appointed by the Pope as the Apostolic Administrator of the Archdiocese of Ernakulam-Angamaly.

It goes without saying that the disobedience and indiscipline of a few dissidents in the archdiocese transgressed all the bounds of decency and ecclesiastical law, when he was seen speaking in threatening language to a metropolitan whom the Catholic Church considered blessed with such words as thug etc. It is surprising to all that many recent developments in the Archdiocese of Ernakulam Angamaly were just continuations of regionalism, disobedience and indiscipline. In the first instance, the priests takes to the streets and violate discipline; then they burn the effigy of the head of the church, goes on a hunger strike against the church, holds a mass meeting, and finally shouts out, pointing their hands at the administrator of the archdiocese.

There is no doubt that the outrages of the dissident group, which include catechism teachers who are trained to treat priests and bishops only with love and respect, are spiritually and legally wrong. It was the Pope who appointed Mar Andrews Thazhath as the new administrator, replacing Mar Anthony Kariyl, who was the Metropolitan Vicar of Ernakulam-Angamaly Archdiocese. The Catholic Church considers it a sin to violate the Pope's orders.

While the dissidents have the option to appeal against the new decision, either to Vatican's representative in India, Archbishop Leopoldo Girelli, the Ecumenical Council, or the Vatican's highest court, the church authorities can take legal or canonical action against those who threatened his representative appointed by the Pope.

Church experts point out that the Catholic Church never takes swift action in such matters, but if there are no other options, it will not hesitate to do so, citing the previous examples of many.

It is advisable for those who constantly challenge the leadership, and regularly ignore the rules and interests of the Church to withdraw from it. Otherwise, it will remain as a scar in the hearts of the vast majority of believers. Here we should not be guided by personal interests. The unity and growth of the global Catholic Church is strengthened through each believer.

Believers do not elect the Pope, the supreme head of the Church. It is not the believers who decide who should be the head of the Syro Malabar Church, the bishop of his diocese or the vicar of his own parish. In the same way, there is no doubt that all our liturgy and sacraments were given by Christ through his apostolic descendants.

Instead of accepting the beatitudes that the Church, which is filled with blessings and goodness, provides us, it is arrogant and childish to insist that these blessings should be given the way one wants.

Those who used to perceive the Catholic Church as a perfect example started ridiculing at such acts of shame, which are done only to destroy the unity and integrity of the Church, with the support of secret groups that want to destroy the Christian faith. Those who conspire to attack the Church and its leaders in front of the media and the general public, and thereby lead the new generation from the light of faith to darkness, should immediately withdraw from such nefarious attempts. The general public has come to realize that these problems are only due the ignorance of a few priests and laity who surround them, about church affairs and liturgical issues.

" Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same." (Romans 13:1-3)

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