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Monday, April 4, 2016

L’affair Longenecker Draws to a Merciful Conclusion

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Fr. Dwight Longenecker Fr. Dwight Longenecker
Over at, Father Dwight Longenecker posted what I believe to be a sincere explanation of his side of the unfortunate exchange which took place between us over the past few weeks. In his "That Remnant Retraction," Father indicates that he now understands the nature of our concerns over his recent suggestion that some traditionalists, if given enough rope, will move from rhetorical to physical violence. He’s fully retracted that claim, apologized and expressed a desire to move on.

I assume visitors to this site are as weary of this saga as we are, and we’re thus more than happy to accept Father’s explanation and to wish him Godspeed. The Remnant remains firmly committed to building bridges with fellow Catholics, even those who may vehemently disagree with our editorial positions. We believe it is essential, however, to defend traditional Catholicism against unjust accusations, which is why, after having publicly called for a retraction, and with none forthcoming, I asked Chris Ferrara to formalize our demand for retraction by letter.  

At the end of the day and despite obvious disagreements, we’d much prefer to consider Father Longenecker a potential ally rather than an adversary, especially in light of forthcoming events in Rome, but also considering the rise of Christophobia in the world at large.  The sobering reality is that the far-Left recognizes very little difference between traditional Catholics and conservatives such as Father Longenecker. As far as the enemies of Christ are concerned, we’re all 'haters' who will eventually have to be silenced. Those who are willing to defend Christ and His Church in this increasingly Christophobic climate would thus do well to find ways to come together wherever possible, and it is our hope that despite the unpleasantness of this exchange, some small advances in that regard and on both sides were nevertheless realized.

The matter is therefore closed. We ask Father to pray for us, even as we will pray for him, that a greater understanding might gradually begin to develop between all those who seek to remain in the faithful service of Christ our King and His Church under siege, even despite the confusion and uncertainty that seem to everywhere dominate the landscape.

In necessariis unitas, in dubiis libertas, in omnibus caritas.

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Last modified on Tuesday, April 5, 2016
Michael J. Matt | Editor

Michael J. Matt has been an editor of The Remnant since 1990. Since 1994, he has been the newspaper's editor. A graduate of Christendom College, Michael Matt has written hundreds of articles on the state of the Church and the modern world. He is the host of The Remnant Underground and Remnant TV's The Remnant Forum. He's been U.S. Coordinator for Notre Dame de Chrétienté in Paris--the organization responsible for the Pentecost Pilgrimage to Chartres, France--since 2000.  Mr. Matt has led the U.S. contingent on the Pilgrimage to Chartres for the last 24 years. He is a lecturer for the Roman Forum's Summer Symposium in Gardone Riviera, Italy. He is the author of Christian Fables, Legends of Christmas and Gods of Wasteland (Fifty Years of Rock ‘n’ Roll) and regularly delivers addresses and conferences to Catholic groups about the Mass, home-schooling, and the culture question. Together with his wife, Carol Lynn and their seven children, Mr. Matt currently resides in St. Paul, Minnesota.