Fr Clement Tigar SJ was a great and holy man belonging to an order that, pre you-know-what, still had depth and integrity.
In the 1960s I lived just around the corner from Campion House in Osterley, a seminary for late vocations, where Fr Tigar ruled the roost.
He was an austere man (as, I believe, so many saints were) and, despite the fact that I doffed my school cap to him as we passed, he barely acknowledged me; maybe his mind was on higher things (undoubtedly).
He wrote many books, including my favourite, 'Papist Pie', a series of brief questions (supposedly framed by a non Catholic) matched with concise answers framed by the great man himself.
If you read the contents, one thing above all others stands out - the fact that Church teaching is black and white.
Theology, within the framework of HMC is ultra precise, there's no room for ifs and buts.
And that is how it should be. Christ did not come to found imprecision and committee type debate, He came to found His own Church, infallible in every way in her teachings.
Here are a couple of extracts from 'Papist Pie' -
Fr Tigar's response:
"Because it's against orders. Catholics belong to a Church which believes in discipline, and one of her rules is "no worship with Non-Catholics."
But, why does she give this order?
Because she is firmly convinced that she has a sacred trust from God to hand on to her children the truth revealed by Christ, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
A service necessarily involves some expression of belief in the truths about God and about Jesus Christ.
She would be false to her trust if she allowed her children to join in services not authorized by herself, because she could not be sure that in such services the whole truth and nothing but the truth was being imparted.
She casts no aspersions on Non-Catholics who worship God in their own way; on the contrary she has the deepest regard for their evident sincerity and goodness, but since she knows that she alone possesses the full truth of God's revelation, she cannot allow her children to worship at Non-Catholic services".
Fr Tigar's response:
"No. An open mind is often a vacant mind. A mathematician who had an open mind on the possibility that twice two might or might not make four would have a vacant mind.
Religious questions are questions of truth and error, and there is an obligation on every man to find the truth".