I was shocked to hear this self-righteous, prideful and downright deplorable announcement from John Corapi (at Mark Shea's blog).
Corapi apparently is throwing in the towel as regards the whole priesthood thing. However, he is not throwing in the towel as far as marketing himself. He has decided to go it without the Church. He is now the "Black Sheep Dog", an apparent source of truth, even though he admits quite audaciously that he has separated himself from the source of all truth, the Holy Catholic Church.
Now it could be argued that Corapi doesn't say, outright, "I'm leaving the Church." However, many of his comments, especially the comment that he is now going to speak to a wider audience, and that he is going to continue some sort of "ministry" without the sanction of the Church, indicates that he is practically separating himself from the Church. His rather self-aggrandizing statement that he's going to feed and guard the entire world sounds as though he's actually starting his own religion. What's more he is doing so while at the same time attacking the Church and Her bishops, and never indicates that he intends to stay loyal or obedient to the Church's Magisterium. If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck...
There is also the behavior of his followers. The damage in this regard is already widespread and quite serious. A number of Corapi followers have announced on his Facebook fan page that they too are leaving the Catholic Church to stick with their idol as he begins a new phase of error and conceit. At the beginning of Lent I lamented the fact that John Corapi was attacking the Church, and I wrote that nothing good would come of it. Now we are seeing the fruits. People are leaving the Church to follow this little devil.
Once again, I reiterate my initial criticism of the EWTN, novus ordo Catholic, mindset that creates these celebrity priests, foists them on the faithful as pristine sources of spiritual and doctrinal guidance without thought to the real peril to souls such actions can initiate. There's little modern mainstream Catholics have, though, if they wish to deepen their faith. In the sacerdotal vacuum created after the Second Vatican Council, a vacuum created by the tossing out of our Catholic identity and Catholic Tradition, authentic spiritual enrichment has been lost. Modern Catholics are often left floundering in the desert of the novus ordo Church, with its bad liturgy, kitsch music and art, and the cult of priestly personality.
Isn't it time to give Tradition a try? A real and potent solution to the sacerdotal vacuum that has been created in the wake of Vatican II is Tradition. If mainstream Catholics attempt to fill this vacuum with the these celebrity priests, these counterfeits foisted on us by EWTN, not only will they not be satisfied, but they could very well be putting their souls in jeopardy. Imagine! People are leaving the Church to follow a man who styles himself the "Black Sheep Dog". Is there a clearer indication of how spiritually bankrupt the modern, mainstream Catholic has become?
On the other hand, the Traditional Latin Mass and its commensurate spirituality can satisfy the modern longing to live a devout Catholic faith. At the Traditional Latin Mass man turns toward the Person of Christ. Jesus Christ is not at the center, He is at the forefront, in an exalted position, as He should be, and man faces Him and adores Him. There is no "center". There is only God being worshiped by His creatures.
No, not all traditional Catholics are perfect. Many have fallen. But they have fallen in contradiction to their values, in contradiction to the principles at the heart of traditional Catholicism. The John Corapis of the world have fallen because they have taken the cult of man, that has been given a prominent position in the new order of the Mass and in the modern Church, to its logical conclusion. Those who follow the John Corapis of the world into perdition do so because they have not been fed, and can no longer distinguish the authentic from the counterfeit.
I will say a prayer for John Corapi, as I did at the beginning of Lent. I will also say a prayer for those who are following him to their destruction. And I will take this seriously, because, whether John Corapi likes it or not, there is no salvation outside the Church.