It was quite a pleasure listening to Fr. Ripperger talk today, at Veritas. The main subject of his talk was living in our society as traditional Catholics. He touched on many controversial issues. I wasn't able to hear everything he had to say because I was in and out of the room with a fussy Alex. But from what I heard and what I still remember I will present here a few of his ideas.
As traditional Catholics we should not pick and choose from the Church's teachings. We live in a society that spoils us, so we are used to an easy life and because of that we have a hard times obeying the teachings of the Church completely. Take for example fasting; Father thinks we should fast according to the old tradition. I'm not sure what that is in the Roman Church, but I know that the traditional fasting in the Byzantine Church is very very strict.
Family members should pray together daily and the children should get a solid religious education. Children should be given religious books to read, including the lives of the saints. It is also important for us adults to constantly improve our understanding of the faith and the teaching of the church by reading relevant books often. It is an obligation we have to avoid mediocrity in our spiritual life.
In the "Question and Answer" part of the conference, many issues were discussed. Here are a few:
1. Obedience-Wives are to be subject to their husbands. An interesting thing he noticed is that when a woman "rebels" and wants to stop obeying her husband she cuts her hair short and starts wearing pants.
2. Modesty- I originally wrote something here but I've been censored by my husband (and since I'm a good obedient wife :) I will not insist on writing about this). Dominic thinks that the whole "women should only wear long skirts and dresses" thing is exaggerated.
3. A lot was said about SSPX (Society of St.Pius X, the schismatic branch of the traditional church founded by Bishop Lefebvre). While this branch of the church follows the pre Vatican II rite, it is still considered schismatic and the pope will need to officially raise the excommunication. Before this happens, participating and receiving the sacraments in an SSPX church is forbidden. This was the opinion of Fr Ripperger and I'm not going to comment on this because I don't know enough about the matter. I just know that several people I trust and respect have chosen to go to SSPX churches.
4. Women who have had an abortion are excommunicated IF at the time of the abortion they knew this was a sin punishable with excommunication. I had no idea about that, I have to say. I wonder if murder is also excommunicable. I don't think it is and that says a lot about the gravity of abortion. In other words, a woman who had an abortion and wants to get absolution would need to get that from a bishop. Is that correct?
5. Marriage outside the Church- This is a very delicate subject. Someone raised this question: What do you do if someone in your family marries outside the church? Father's response was that you can not be part of that. If their "marriage" is non sacramental you are not allowed to attend their wedding, nor are you supposed to accept them in your house as a couple, especially if you have older children, since that would be causing scandal.
There were two more points I wanted to write about, but I really should stop here for now, because I'm very tired and it's late. I might continue this post tomorrow.