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Sentimental Piety Is Self-Idolatry

Today countless Catholics - both Traditionalists and Progressivists - are sure that when they engage in their sentimental practices of piety they are doing a very good thing, growing in their spiritual life and becoming holier. Sad to say, they are doing nothing but worshiping an idol made in their own image, they are neither worshiping God nor venerating His Saints. This is what Fr. Sarda y Salvani teaches us when he exposes the causes of Catholic Liberalism.



Fr. Sarda y Salvany

Piety itself does not escape the action of this pernicious naturalistic principle; it converts it into pietism - that is to say, into a parody of true piety, as is painfully seen in the pious practices of so many people who seek in their devotions only the sentimental emotions of which they themselves are able to be the source. They are devout over themselves, worshiping their own little sentiments and offering incense to idols graven after their own image. This is simply spiritual sensualism, and nothing else.

Thus we see in our day in so many souls the degeneration of Christian asceticism (which is the purification of the heart by the repression of the appetites) and the falsification of Christian mysticism, which is neither emotion, nor interior consolation, nor any other epicurean foible of human sentiment, but union with God through a supernatural love for Him and through absolute submission to His holy will.

Therefore it is that the Catholicity of a great number of people in our times is a Liberal Catholicity, or rather, a false Catholicity. It is really not Catholicity, but mere naturalism, a pure rationalism; it is, in a word, paganism disguised in Catholic forms and using Catholic language.

Fr. Felix Sarda y Salvani, Liberalism Is a Sin,
1899 , Rockford: TAN, 1993, pp. 36-37

Posted September 24, 2011
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