Exorcising the Ghost of Assisi

27 08 2008

For the devotee of the Lefebvrist movement, 1987 was a water shed year. The ecumenical prayer meeting at Assisi was cited by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre as one of the events that led him to consecrate four bishops without the consent of the Pope of Rome a year later and thus incur the penalty of excommunication for all involved in that action. There was no excuse, according to his argument, for medicine men to practice their craft in the streets sanctified by the feet of St. Francis, or for idols to be put atop Catholic altars. Regardless of what side you happen to fall on in the debate, for the typical orthodox Catholic, Assisi just didn’t look right. And it is hard to argue that it was not exactly what it appeared to be. As a former adherent of that movement, these residual criticisms still linger in me.
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