Fr Michael Clifton, long time pastor of the faithful, former archivist of Southwark, learned historian, kindly teacher of schoolboys (including me, nearly 40 years ago) cricket coach, model railway enthusiast, and warm friend and mentor of younger clergy now feels that he must close his blog because he has been threatened with legal action by Monsignor Basil Loftus who writes a weekly column for the Catholic Times.

(Fr Finigan)

It’s been a long time since I regularly had my paws on the UK Catholic papers, but the name of Mgr Basil Loftus sticks in the mind as one of those who appeared in them promulgating DIY Catholicism in a dated style that leaves parody in fear of its life. Confirming half of my theory about psychological characteristics and theological preferences (that liberals are egoists and promulgators of clericalism, whereas trads are weird or neurotic), he’s threatened Fr Mildew with legal action for having called him a heretic in a comment the good father made on Fr Blake’s blog.

What is biting Mgr Loftus, that a simple blog comment – and surely one easily refuted with another comment – should so enrage him? Is he pathologically choleric? Fr Clifton was always edifyingly happy to be corrected and to correct what he’d written in response to comments and emails.

Has he not read 1 Corinthians?

I also wonder if he’s read the Catechism, or (following what looked like an extremely suspicious article on ad orientem in the SCO in the summer – personally I’d be very worried if my bus driver insisted on facing the passengers) Uwe Lang’s Turning to Face the Lord. Certainly the stuff of his Fr Finigan is quoting on the resurrection reads like tripe. If he wasn’t aware that what he wrote appears to be heresy, then surely he’s glad to have it pointed out? If he was aware of the fact that it reads as though it contradicts the Faith, and yet doesn’t mean what it appears to say, then why did he write it? And if he was aware that it appears to contradict the faith, and he meant it to, and he holds what it appears to say, well, I don’t see that he’s got a case, really.

Fr Finigan has a list of posts on this subject. He posted before Red Maria wrote hers.