The National Association of Catholic Families


This edition of CF NEWS (No.2190) posted at 12.35 pm on Sunday, June 18th, 2017. For full contents, scroll down or click on 'more' for the story of your choice. To return here click on one of the small green arrows





Vatican watch

Pope appoints abortion supporter to pro-life Academy continue reading
Amoris Laetitia, fully implemented continue reading
Sarah: Clergy cannot shy away from 'hard sayings' continue reading
Curia reform continue reading
Superior of Heralds of the Gospel resigns continue reading
US Embassy promotes LGBT propaganda at Vatican continue reading
Chartres Pilgrimage
  VIDEO  continue reading

Humanae Vitae

The Plan of 'Reinterpretation' for Humanae Vitae
continue reading

United Nations

UN official coming for your Church continue reading
UN orders Ireland 6 to legalize abortion continue reading

News from around the world

ARGENTINA Bishop receives divorcees into 'Full Communion' continue reading
RUSSIA Russian Greek Catholic Church feels neglected by Rome continue reading
SICILY Bishops authorize Communion for adulterous couples
continue reading
UK Northern Ireland MPs under attack for defending life
continue reading
INTERNATIONAL gloria.tv.news   VIDEO   continue reading
INTERNATIONAL The Prophet Voris continue reading
INTERNATIONAL The World Over with Raymon Arroyo continue reading


The relationship between reason and historical facts   VIDEO  continue reading


Why bishops should condemn Fr Martin's dangerous bridge continue reading
Devastating report
continue reading


LGBT movement adopts demon as icon continue reading

Comment from the internet

Accommodating sodomy, adultery in the Church continue reading
The Pope, the Hypocrisy continue reading
Pius XII's prophetic warnings about Fatima continue reading
Apostolic Commissar ready to destroy 'too pious' Order? continue reading
Karl Rahner's time has passed continue reading
Whether sweet or sour, sentimentality is a swamp continue reading
Seeking to defend Islam at all costs is betraying the truth continue reading

Our Catholic Heritage

Site of the day : Jervaulx continue reading
Lauda Sion Salvatorem
  VIDEO   continue reading


Feast of Corpus Christi continue reading




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Vatican watch




Pope Francis appoints abortion-supporter to Pontifical Academy for Life

AMONG the 45 new members Pope Francis has appointed to the Pontifical Academy for Life is an Anglican minister who has argued that abortion should be legal until '18 weeks after conception'.

University of Oxford Professor Nigel Biggar, who was appointed to the Academy for a five-year term, stated in a 2011 dialogue with pro-infanticide ethicist Peter Singer that a preborn baby is 'not…the same kind of thing as an adult or a mature human being' and therefore does not deserve 'quite the same treatment'.

'I would be inclined to draw the line for abortion at 18 weeks after conception, which is roughly about the earliest time when there is some evidence of brain activity, and therefore of consciousness,' he said as reported by Standpoint magazine.

Then, one year later, when he was the keynote speaker for an event at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota, he said that 'it is not true that all abortion is equivalent to murder'.

When LifeSiteNews asked Biggar if his appointment to the Academy indicated that the Church under Francis is shifting gears on abortion, he said that as someone who is not Roman Catholic, he did not think it appropriate to comment on the Church's position.

At Oxford, Biggar serves as Regius Professor of Moral and Pastoral Theology, and Director of the McDonald Centre for Theology, Ethics, and Public Life. He is also a Canon of Christ Church Cathedral.

The appointment of an academic who supports legal abortion to the Academy founded in 1994 by St. Pope John Paul II comes as a shock, especially given the Academy's head, Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, recently assuring that the new members would be 'truly representative of all who value life at all its stages'.


SANDRO MAGISTER blogs from Rome: 'Finally, after a long wait, on Tuesday March 13 the list was released naming the new members of the Pontifical Academy for Life, all of papal appointment. Still missing is the list of the executive board, also of papal appointment, as is that of the 'corresponding' members, the designation of which belongs to the president of the Academy, Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia. But the main part is done.

Compared with the 132 members of the Academy with various title who were all dismissed on December 31 of 2016, the current members number 45 plus 5 'ad honorem'. Those confirmed are 33, the new are 17, and their names together with their titles are on this list released by the press office of the Holy See:

So those crossed off the list are quite a few. And among them are a few scholars of great authoritativeness, who however have distinguished themselves in publicly criticizing the new moral and practical paradigms that have entered into vogue with the pontificate of Francis.

Among these is German philosopher Robert Spaemann, a longstanding friend of Joseph Ratzinger; the Australian philosopher John Finnis, the author together with Germain Grisez of an 'open letter' to Pope Francis highly critical of 'Amoris Laetitia'; the Englishman Luke Gormally; the Austrian Josef Maria Seifert and Wlfgang Waldstein.

Nor has there been any confirmation for pro-life activists of international prominence like the Guatemalan Maria Mercedes Arzú de Wilson and the Venezuelan Christine De Marcellus Vollmer, among the first called by John Paul II to be part of the Academy, which is now left shorthanded on this front.

Also gone are three representatives of eastern Europe who grew up in the school of Karol Wojtyla and have remained absolutely faithful to him, like Poland's Andrzej Szostek, the Ukrainian Mieczyslaw Grzegocki, and the Czech Jaroslav Sturma, a psychologist and psychotherapist staunchly opposed to 'gender' ideology.

Just as a cross has been marked over Etienne Kaboré of Burkina Faso, perfectly in line with the positions of the African Church on marriage, family, and sexuality, seen at work during the last two synods.

Lacking from Europe are the contributions of France's Bernard Kerdelhue, a disciple and great admirer of the Servant of God Jérôme Lejeune, first president of the Academy, and of the Belgians Michael Schooyans and Philippe Schepens, a fervent defender of medical ethics inspired by Hippocrates. While among the Latin American academics there will no longer be the Chilean Patricio Ventura-Junca, very close to another former president of the Academy, Juan de Dios Vial Correa, his fellow countryman.

From the United States there will no longer be the contribution of Thomas William Hilgers, a gynecologist who has worked extensively on natural methods of fertility regulation. Perfectly faithful to 'Donum Vitae' and 'Humanae Vitae' and firmly opposed to contraception and 'in vitro' fertilization, this is probably the reason why he has been excluded, in view of a revision of the Church's positions on these issues about which rumors have been circulating at the Vatican with growing insistence.

But the reconfirmations and new names are also indicative of a change of direction.

Among those confirmed, the five new members 'ad honorem' represent an obligatory tribute to the past, in the persons of cardinals Carlo Caffarra and Elio Sgreccia, of Birthe Lejeune, vice-president of the Foundation that bears the name of Jérôme Lejeune, her husband and first president of the Academy in 1994, and of the other two former presidents, Juan de Dios Vial Correa from Chile, and Ignacio Carrasco de Paula from Spain.

Also obligatory were the reconfirmations of Dutch cardinal Willem Jacobus Eijk and of Sydney archbishop Anthony Colin Fisher, both 'conservative'.

But if one looks at the other names it can be noted that the former 'corresponding' members now promoted as 'ordinary' members are among the most docile to the openness of Pope Francis and to the new course headed by Archbishop Paglia. Among these can be cited Canadian bishop Noël Simard, Argentine bishop Alberto German Bochatey, the Mexican Rodrigo Guerra López, the Japanese Catholic Etsuko Akiba.

There has also been confirmation for personalities of substance, including financial, appreciated for their skills of irreplaceability and adaptability, like the supreme head of the Knights of Columbus, the American Carl A. Anderson, for many years a generous sponsor both of the Academy and of the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family, or the Frenchman Jean-Marie Le Mené, president of the Jérôme Lejeune Foundation and a financer of his beatification process.

Among the 17 new appointments, three are non-Christians: the Japanese Nobel laureate in medicine Shinya Yamanaka, the Tunisian Muslim Mohamed Haddad, and the Israeli Jew Avraham Steinberg, director of the medical ethics unit at the Shre Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem and director of the editorial committee of the Talmudic Encyclopedia. Archbishop Paglia has preferred this latter to another Jew, Riccardo Di Segni, chief rabbi of Rome and also a physician and expert on bioethics, vice-president of the Italian national bioethics committee, but whose positions are more conservative and sometimes explicitly critical of Pope Francis.

Another indicative 'new entry' is that of Angelo Vescovi, a controversial figure in scientific circles but with the closest of ties to Paglia since he was bishop of Terni, where he helped him to create a study center on stem cells and favored his appointment as scientific director of the Home for the Relief of the Suffering in San Giovanni Rotondo founded by Padre Pio.

But perhaps the most emblematic new name of the Academy's new course is that of moral theologian Maurizio Chiodi, a professor at the theological faculty of Milan and of northern Italy. Chiodi has been speaking out for some time in critical terms on important points of 'Humanae Vitae, Donum Vitae,' and 'Evangelium Vitae'. He is also in evident discontinuity with the encyclical 'Veritatis Splendor' of John Paul II, while vice-versa he appears to be in harmony with the current openness to a new 'discernment' on questions such as contraception, in vitro fertilization, sexual orientation, 'gender,' passive euthanasia, assisted suicide.

With more prudence, other pillars of the Academy who have upheld antiethical positions in the past are also showing themselves willing to support this transformation. This is the case of Francesco D'Agostino, a philosopher of law and honorary president of the Italian national bioethics committee; of Adriano Pessina, director of the Bioethics Center of the Catholic University of Milan; of John Hs, president of the National Catholic Bioethics Center in the United States and a friend of Cardinal Kevin J. Farrell, prefect of the dicastery for laity, family, and life; of Ángel Rodríguez Luño, professor of moral theology at the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross and a consultant for the congregation for the doctrine of the faith, who holds a great deal of clout with Cardinal Gerhard L. Müller.

With a Pontifical Council for Life set up this way, the opposition that still takes its inspiration from Lejeune, from Sgreccia, from Caffarra, from Saint John Paul II, from Benedict XVI, will not have an easy life.

[LSN / Settimo Cielo] 2190.1


CF News / Vatican watch

Amoris Laetitia, fully implemented

STEVE SKOJEC writes for OnePeterFive : 'In the 14 months since the post-synodal Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia was published, countless pixels have been spilled discussing it, dissecting it, breaking it down, and lamenting its clearly heterodox intent.

We've seen its ambiguous provisions allowing Holy Communion for the divorced and 'remarried' implemented in more concrete fashion in the Philippines, in Argentina, in Malta, in Belgium, in German, and even in Rome. It was in fact the Argeninian bishops of the Buenos Aires region who brought to light the pope's personal interpretation of his exhortation, when he confirmed their allowance for sacraments for the 'remarried' with a letter stating, 'The document is very good and completely explains the meaning of chapter VIII of Amoris Laetitia. There are no other interpretations'.

It appears that one bishop in Argentina - elevated to the episcopacy in 2013 by Pope Francis himself - has decided to go all in on this interpretation, of which the pope insists there is no other:

This past Sunday at the Parish Church of San Roque, Reconquista, Santa Fe (Argentina), the local bishop, Msgr. Macín, appointed by Pope Francis in 2013, carried out a monumental and sacrilegious scandal that clearly shows what's behind Amoris laetitia.

In this church he organized a solemn Mass, in which he publicly announced that according to the norms sent in a letter more than 6 months ago by Pope Francis, and within the framework of the integration of Christians who are 'marginalized' because of their irregular situation of being divorced and remarried or in an irregular situation (the divorced in a new union), after having completed a period of 6 months of meetings on Saturdays called the 'path of discernment', it was determined in accordance with what was previously stated (by order of the Pope) TO INCLUDE THEM IN FULL AND SACRAMENTAL COMMUNION, which would happen in the ceremony. At no point was mention made that those people had taken some vow of chastity or of living 'as brothers [and sisters]'.

In the same way, communion was given to all those mentioned (some 30 couples) accompanied by their relatives who took photos in a festive atmosphere. At no point was reference ever made to the Scriptures which condemn adultery, and again and again the excerpts of Amoris laetitia are mentioned where it is said that the divorced and remarried ought to be included in full communion.

We have reached the last train station on the line, ladies and gentlemen. This is the full implementation of Amoris Laetitia, and it didn't take long to get here.

If the pope wants to make a course correction, to pull back and say this isn't what he really intended, now is the time, and this is the case. If he does nothing about it - which we can all reasonably conclude that he won't - this puts an end to the debate, forever, over whether or not this is exactly what he wanted Amoris Laetitia to do.

[1P5] 2190.2


CF News / Vatican watch

Cardinal Sarah: Clergy cannot shy away from 'hard sayings' on homosexuality

CARDINAL SARAH, prefect of the Vatican's Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, issues both a stunning admonishment and an impassioned plea to his fellow bishops and priests in his foreward to Why I Don't Call Myself Gay.

He first delivers a strong rebuke calling attention to the fact that the Church teaches ' ... things in the Catechism about homosexuality that some members of the clergy choose not to quote, including the clear warning: 'under no circumstances can [homosexual acts] be approved' (CCC 2357). The respect and sensitivity to which the Catechism rightly calls us does not give us permission to deprive men and women who experience SSA (same-sex attraction) of the fullness of the Gospel. To omit the 'hard sayings' of Christ and his Church is not charity'.

His warning about withholding the Gospel from those who deal with SSA comes at a critical moment in the life of the Church with the publication of Fr. James Martin's new pro-LGBT book, Building a Bridge.

Last November, Fr. Martin, SJ, received an award from New Ways Ministry, an LGBT group previously condemned for representing itself as a Catholic organization. His acceptance speech became the broad outline for his new book. In fact, the name of the award he received is 'New Ways Ministry's Bridge Building Award'.

Fr. Martin was also recently tapped by the Vatican as a communications consultant to the Holy See's Secretariat for Communications.

Publication of Martin's gay-friendly book has drawn glowing comments from high-profile Vatican and U.S. church officials who are supportive of Fr. Martin's pro-'gay' message.

Cardinal Joseph Tobin, a Pope Francis appointee, personally welcomed homosexuals to the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart in Newark, New Jersey, last month as part of a so-called 'LGBT Pilgrimage'.

Cardinal Kevin Farrell, recently appointed by Pope Francis to head the Vatican office on laity, family, and life issues, said Martin's pro-'gay' book 'will help bishops, priests, pastoral associates, and all church leaders more compassionately minister to the LGBT community'.

San Diego Bishop Robert McElroy, appointed in 2015, has encouraged inclusivity and embracing LGBT families.

Those prelates and clerics who justify homosexuality challenge the Church's genuine understanding of the human person and of human sexuality, sweeping aside authentic Church teaching and endangering, rather than helping, those who are same-sex attracted. In a phrase abounding with as much love as it is truth, Cardinal Sarah warns, 'We cannot be more compassionate or merciful than Jesus'.

His admonition echos a public appeal made a few years ago by Jean Lloyd, Ph.D, a former lesbian and now happily married mother of two, to her fellow Christians: 'May I make two requests? Continue to love me, but remember that you cannot be more merciful than God. It isn't mercy to affirm same-sex acts as good. Practice compassion according to the root meaning of 'compassion': Suffer with me. Don't compromise truth; help me to live in harmony with it. I'm asking you to help me take up my cross and follow Jesus'.

Cardinal Sarah's foreward closes with a strong plea to his fellow clergy: 'I especially encourage my brother bishops and priests to read this book, which I trust will deepen their conviction that the wisdom of the Church in this difficult and sensitive area expresses genuine love and compassion'. He is asking them not deprive the same-sex attracted from the hard parts of the Gospel but to lavish the same-sex attracted with its life-giving truth that we might live in freedom as sons and daughter of God.

He then recounts four important truths:

+ Only Christ can heal the wounds of sin and division.

+ Only the Church has the answers to man's deepest questions and his deepest needs for love and friendship.

+ Only the fullness of the Gospel fulfills the human heart.

+ Only the commandments mark the path to friendship with Christ, and with one another, for God's 'commandments are not burdensome' (I Jn 5:3).

While Cardinal Sarah is often described by detractors as being an enemy of LGBT rights, the contrary is true: Those who experience same-sex attraction have no greater advocate, no greater pastor, no greater friend than a man who is uncompromising with the truth.

Daniel Mattson, author of Why I Don't Call Myself Gay, told LifeSiteNews, 'I feel that Cardinal Sarah is standing with, and supporting all of us who've turned away from the world's vision of sexuality and found freedom and truth in the Church. With the gift of Cardinal Sarah's support, I feel that I have a firm foundation of support to share the good news the Church provides for a man like me. As Cardinal Sarah says, it is only the Church has the answers to the deepest questions of the human heart. The Church has shown me the Way, the Truth, and the Life in following the love of Jesus who says both that I am in no way condemned, but that in order to live the truly abundant life, I must do what all men must do when they encounter the love and mercy of Jesus: by the grace of God, go, and sin no more'.

[LSN] 2190.3

CF News / Vatican watch

Curia reform

POPE FRANCIS and the Council of Cardinals held their 20th round of meetings in Rome this week, continuing their work on reform of the Roman Curia, including their discussion of ways the Curia can better serve local churches.


MARCO TOSATTI writes for First Things : 'Pope Francis raised great expectations when, on April 13, 2013, one month after being elected to Peter's See, he created a council of cardinals (then eight, now nine) to study and implement a great reform of the Curia and the Church. Reform was his mandate. During the discussions that took place prior to his election, many cardinals had called for a deep reform, especially of the Vatican's Secretariat of State. Its power was too great, they said, not least in its influence over the pope. Since the formation of the council of cardinals (now often referred to as 'the C9'), eighteen meetings have been held, many lively debates have taken place, and ambitious projects have been drawn up. But four years on, the results remain unimpressive. Not to say disappointing.

Some criticism must have reached the ears of Cardinal Maradiaga, the C9's leader, who said in a recent interview: 'Sometimes they ask us, 'What is this council of cardinals doing? Why do we not see results?' The results are there, but you do not see them'. One of the C9's major tasks has been to reform the pontifical councils, often by merging them. Old hands in the Curia know that it's not enough to put new labels on old items. To get results, you have to make things work-which is a little harder.

For instance: On September 1, 2016, the Council for Laity, Family, and Life ceased to exist-formally-and was merged into a new ministry. The pope chose Cardinal Kevin Farrell to lead it. But not until a few days ago was a secretary named: Alexandre Awi Mello, a Brazilian priest. The undersecretary's role is still vacant. And since Mello lives in Brazil, it will be some time before he comes to Rome and starts working. In every Vatican ministry, the secretary and undersecretary are vital-and here we are, in June 2017. Nor has anything changed at the lower levels of personnel. The staff of the defunct council are still there, waiting for something to happen. Every morning at the Vatican, people go to their desks who officially should not be there anymore. They are waiting to be dismissed.

'It's a placid, quiet chaos,' says one smiling veteran, speaking of the Palazzo San Callisto, where the new ministry has its abode.

Very similar is the story of the new Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, which was created last August (effective January 1) out of the merger of four pontifical councils: the Pontifical Councils for Justice and Peace, for Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People, and for Pastoral Assistance to Health Care Workers; and Cor Unum. The staff of these councils from before the merger continue to be employed in their old roles. There are a couple of priests who spend their days in front of huge television screens, monitoring the NGO ships that ferry people from Africa to Italy. It is still unclear, even to Cardinal Peter Turkson, who heads the new dicastery, what the dicastery is supposed to do. Turkson is a biblical scholar, with no specific experience in managerial positions. Some suspect that he was appointed because he comes from Africa. Francis himself has assumed responsibility for directing the dicastery's work on behalf of migrants. To his friends, Turkson says that he is doing what he did before: waiting for marching orders.

So much time has been spent on the reform of the pontifical councils, and so little has been accomplished. We heard by chance a cardinal and an archbishop, both of whom have worked in the Curia for many years: 'Such a reform! We could have prepared it ourselves, in the space of one morning, sitting at a table'.

Another of the C9's tasks is more complex: the restructuring of the Vatican's media operations. Monsignor Dario Viganò is the mastermind of this reform, which involves several different structures inside the Vatican. During the last C9 meeting, Viganò explained the merging of Vatican Radio and Vatican Television Center, the plan for the radio frequencies, the policy for renewing the Social Network, and the future of the Vatican Printing Library. There are problems here, too. Many have criticized the decision to abolish the short-wave system. Some African bishops protested, because the short-wave is one of the few reliable methods of reaching the faithful in their countries. It remains one of the only ways to reach Catholics in countries under oppressive regimes. This Vatican decision comes at a moment when the BBC and the Japanese NHK are working to strengthen their short-wave systems, even asking the Vatican's permission to use its Santa Maria di Galeria aerial antennas.

Another important initiative, the proposed reform of the Vatican's finances, has produced few results. In 2014, Francis created a secretary for the economy. Everything related to money and personnel, from every ministry in the Vatican, was supposed to come under the power of one of the C9 members, Cardinal George Pell. The remit was staggeringly large, encompassing Propaganda Fide (which has a budget greater than the Holy See's), APSA (the Vatican finance office), and the Governatorate of the Vatican City State, as well as the money controlled by the secretariat of state (which is richer than the Vatican Bank). Of course, not everyone was happy. And slowly, working on the pope in personal encounters, one by one, they took away from the secretary for the economy their treasures great and small. Now Pell is confined to give general guidelines, and exercises a post-facto check on the budgets. He was not very happy as, leaf by leaf, his onion was reduced to nothing.

Now the C9 is working on a new proposal of Maradiaga's. The pontiff does not seem to like it very much. The idea would be to unify under the title of 'Deaconry of Justice' all the Vatican Courts: the Apostolic Penitentiary, the Rota Romana, and the Apostolic Signatura (the High Court of which Cardinal Raymond Burke was the prefect). The proposal seems a little strange. What has the Penitentiary, which deals in confessions and indulgences, to do with the others? And since the Signatura must hear appeals of cases from the Romana Rota, how can the two courts merge without creating a conflict? The same people would give judgment in both the first and second instances.

And we are still only talking about the comparatively small departments. The large congregations have not yet come under the examination of the C9. Nor has the C9 addressed the main question put by the cardinals in the pre-conclave sessions: the reform of the secretariat of state.

One of the specific requests stated by the cardinals before the conclave was this: The head of the ministries must be allowed to meet the pope regularly and frequently, as was formerly guaranteed by a fixed schedule of meetings, called 'udienze di tabella'. If you were the head of a ministry, you knew that at least twice a month, at a certain hour on a certain day, you would meet the pope. For instance, the prefect of the CDF (or his secretary) met the pope every Friday afternoon. Now, since the udienze di tabella is no more, every head must ask the secretariat of state to fix a meeting; and very often, they are told that the pope is too busy. In the case of the three CDF officials dismissed by the pope without explanation, Cardinal Müller had asked many times for a meeting to plead for them. He was finally granted one, two or three months too late.

When the cardinals urged reinstating the udienze di tabella, their idea was clear: to prevent the secretariat of state becoming a gatekeeper through whom all business must pass. Without this regular schedule, the secretariat of state becomes a filter between the pope and the Curia. And so, despite the calls for reform, the secretariat of state is more powerful than ever. So long as that is the case, real reform seems unlikely.

[First Things] 2190.4

CF News / Vatican watch

General Superior of the Heralds of the Gospel resigns

THE EPONYMOUS FLOWER reports : 'The founder and first Superior General of the Lay Community of the Heralds of the Gospel (Evangelii Praecones) and the Order, Community of Virgo Flos Carmeli, Monsignor João Scognamiglio Clá Días, has resigned from office. He announced this step in a letter of June 2nd, yesterday. Is there suspicion in the Church, of that which attracts many vocations?

The Heralds of the Gospel and the male and female branches are a young, traditionally based foundation, which originates from Brazil and is now represented in 80 countries of the world. The charism of the community is strongly missionary and Marian. The Heralds originated in the 1970s, when the founder and other young men personally felt the need for a deepened religious and communal life. The actual development as a lay community and then as a branch of the Order took place in the mid-nineties.

The Heralds of the Gospel are the first lay community of pontifical right, recognized by Rome in the third millennium. They therefore also see themselves as 'Heralds' of the third Christian millennium. Not for a progressive, but for a renewed, faithful Church. The recognition of the lay community took place with Pope John Paul II. The recognition of the two branches of the order (societies of the Apostolic Life without perpetual vows, but with promises of celibacy) took place in 2009 with Pope Benedict XVI.

In 2005, the first priests were consecrated, including the founder, Monsignor João Scognamiglio Clá Días, whom Pope Benedict XVI. conferred as a sign of appreciation and recognition in 2008, the title of honorary canon at the patriarchal basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore in Rome.

Today the priestly branch of the Community already has 120 priests and 20 deacons. The two societies of the Apostolic Life include more than 4,000 members. Heralds of the Gospel are over 40,000.

While John Paul II and Benedict XVI. completely stood behind the traditional, missionary community, Pope Francis suddenly changed this relationship. The tradition, the special worship of Our Lady of Fatima, the community discipline of an army which is already expressed in the name of 'Heralds,' the rigor in youth formation, rapid growth and numerous vocations, have aroused suspicion, envy and resentment in other ecclesiastical circles. It's a negative attitude of which even the Holy See is not free of under Francis.

João Scognamiglio Clá Días will complete his 78th birthday on the Feast of the Assumption. By his resignation he seems to want to save himself from the like that of the Franciscans of Immaculata. The Congregation of Religious, which has already unjustly and acquisitively subjected the Franciscans of the Immaculata, had already set up in recent weeks to take action against the Heralds of the Gospel.

[EF] 2190.5

CF News / Vatican watch

US Embassy promotes LGBT propaganda at the Vatican

NEW PRESIDENT, same 'gay' and 'trans' activism being promoted by the United States to the world. That's the sentiment of millions of moral-minded people across the globe who are frustrated that America's LGBTQ propaganda abroad has not ended with Obama's presidency.

On June 7, the U.S. Embassy to the Holy See posted a pro-LGBTQ 'pride month' item on its Facebook page'.June is LGBT Pride Month! Learn more about the origins here, linking to a Library of Congress 2017 LGBT 'pride month' web page that honors homosexual activist Frank Kameny.

It was Kameny who used to tell his pro-family critics in correspondence: 'Gay is Good. Gay is Godly. You are neither'. The atheist homosexual activist and 'gay' icon, who died in 2011, derided religious opponents of the LGBT agenda as 'Christofascists'. He also said bestiality (sex with animals) 'is OK as long as the animal doesn't mind'.

'Bestiality is not my thing … But it seems to be a harmless foible or idiosyncrasy of some people. So, as long as the animal doesn't mind (and the animal rarely does), I don't mind, and I don't see why anyone else should,' Kameny wrote to Americans For Truth in 2008.

As part of its 'gay' celebration, the Library of Congress posted a controversial, pro-homosexual tweet from Orthodox Judaism convert Ivanka Trump, the president's daughter and a key adviser, who declared: 'I am proud to support my LGBTQ friends and the LGBTQ Americans who have made immense contributions to our society and economy'.

Reactions to the U.S. Embassy to the Vatican Facebook post ranged from anger to extreme disappointment among Catholics who respect and follow the Church's teaching that homosexual behavior is intrinsically disordered and not the basis for marriage or a proud self-identity.

'For years, liberals accused us of trying to impose our morals and religion on society,' said Allyson Smith, a Catholic pro-life and pro-family advocate in San Diego'.Now the U.S. through its global embassies is trying to impose a pro-sexual-perversion ideology on the rest of the world, including countries that do not agree'.

'You'd think that, with all the homosexual priesthood scandals, the Vatican would be especially vigilant about not allowing a 'gay pride' flag anywhere within its boundaries,' Smith told LifeSiteNews.

She wondered, 'Who's in charge in that Embassy?' and said that if she were at the Vatican, 'I would tell the Ambassador to take down that mockery of God's rainbow'.

'And why is the U.S. Embassy to the Holy See celebrating a gravely disordered sexual state? Does the U.S. Embassy to Israel host pig roasts?' said Cynthia Heimsoth in a Facebook comment responding to the Embassy's 'LGBT' post that showed a huge 'rainbow flag' being carried in a pride parade.

'Isn't Pride one of the 7 deadly sins???? Umm … ' said Margo Basso in another response.

'This seems an intentional affront to the Embassy's host, the Holy See and does seem like something that would be fully expected from the Obama administration, but very disappointing from the Donald J. Trump administration,' commented Jennifer Jordan Childress.

Childress noted that Louis Bono is temporarily in charge of the U.S. Embassy at the Vatican and said, 'I thought the U.S. ambassador to the Holy See is supposed to be a faithful practicing Catholic American. I do not find info [on whether] Mr. Bono fits that description, but anyone who does sure OUGHT to know better!' (President Trump has chosen Callista Gingrich, wife of the former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, as Ambassador to the Holy See.)

In a statement sent to Newsweek on Wednesday that was more nuanced than typical 'gay pride' proclamations, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said, 'In recognition of LGBTI Month, the Department of State affirms its solidarity with the human rights defenders and civil society organizations working around the world to uphold the fundamental freedoms of LGBTI [Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex] persons to live with dignity and freedom'.

'It focused on reported state-directed violence against homosexuals in Chechnya, in the Russian Federation. The overwhelming majority of social conservatives in the West rightly distinguish between protecting all citizens from violence and celebrating 'pride' in homosexuality, bisexuality, and gender rebellion - all of which offend people holding traditional moral and religious values in many nations'.

That was the case in Iraqi Kurdistan, where an MP objected to the American consulate in Erbil flying the homosexual-activist 'rainbow flag' underneath the American flag.

Iraqi parliamentarian Habib al-Tarfi 'has slammed the United States consulate in Erbil for raising the gay pride flag alongside the U.S. flag, saying the action was not suitable to take in an Islamic region,' Iraqi News reported.

Tarfi, an MP from the Iraqi holy province of Karbala, said it was 'shameful' for the U.S. consulate 'to raise the flag in 'a religious Iraqi province and during the holy month of Ramadan,' saying he 'would have burned the consulate' had it been at his constituency,' Iraqi News reported'.Tarfi urged the Kurdistan Region Government to take a stance regarding the incident'.

Similarly, in Jamaica, pro-family leaders are upset that even with President Trump in office, the homosexuality-bisexuality-transgenderism-celebrating 'rainbow flag' is again flying at the American Embassy to mark 'LGBT Pride Month'. Under Obama, Christian Jamaicans chafed at Barack Obama's increasingly aggressive LGBTQ activism directed at pushing Jamaica to overturn its anti-buggery (anti-sodomy) law.

Dr. Wayne West, chairman of the Jamaica Coalition for a Healthy Society, issued this statement against the 'rainbow flag' flying again in the island nation:

'During his tenure President Obama declared June to be gay pride month. President Trump has not followed Mr. Obama's example but despite this, at the present moment the U.S. Embassy in Liguanea [Kingston, Jamaica] is flying the devil's imitation six-color rainbow flag (there are seven colors in the true rainbow, which God uses as a sign of his covenant).

'This six-colored rainbow flag is the emblem of the LGBTTTIQA+ political movement and should be regarded as an altar for the entrance of foolish public policies which are against God's laws and which encourage behaviors which are both depraved and associated with high statistical risk of disease. Please pray against the action of the U.S. Embassy and ask others to do the same'.

President Trump broke with his predecessor by not issuing a formal White House 'gay pride month' proclamation for June. But various military agencies and the Pentagon itself are celebrating LGBT 'pride month,' frustrating social conservatives who hoped that would end under Trump.

The State Department last month allowed scaled back celebrations of IDAHOT, the 'International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia' held May 17. As LifeSiteNews reported, the U.S. Embassy in Macedonia flew the 'rainbow flag' under Old Glory on that day.

[LSN] 2190.6

CF News / Vatican watch

Chartres Pilgrimage

SEVENTEEN THOUSAND pilgrims from all over the world walk from Paris to Chartres in the strongest showing yet of traditional Catholic restoration. Tradition's rising worldwide























Humanae Vitae

The Plan of 'Reinterpretation' for Humanae Vitae

Roberto de MatteiROBERTO DE MATTEI, Corrisponenza Romano, writes : 'It will be Monsignor Gilfredo Marengo, Professor at John Paul II Pontifical Institute, the coordinator of the commission nominated by Pope Francis to 're-interpret' the encyclical Humanæ Vitæ by Paul VI, in the light of Amoris laetitia, on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of the former's promulgation, which falls next year. The initial rumors of the existence of this commission, still secret, reported by Vatican reporter Marco Tosatti, were of a sound source.

We can confirm that there is a commission, made up of Monsignor Pierangelo Sequeri, Head of the John Paul II Pontifical Institute, Professor Philippe Chenaux, Lecturer in Church History at the Lateran Pontifical University and Monsignor Angel Maffeis, Head of the Paul VI Institute in Brescia. The coordinator is Monsignor Gilfredo Marengo, Lecturer in Theological Anthropology at the John Paul II Institute and member of the Steering Committee of the review CVII-Centro Vaticano II Studi e ricerche.

The commission nominated by Pope Francis has the task of procuring from the Vatican Archives, the documentation related to the preparatory work on Humanæ Vitæ, which took place over a period of three years, during and after the Second Vatican Council. The first study group on the matter 'of regulating births' was constituted by John XXIII in March 1963 and grew to 75 members under Paul VI. In 1966 the 'experts' delivered their conclusions to Pope Montini, and suggested opening the doors to artificial contraception.

In April 1967 the document reserved for the commission - the one from which the 're-visitation of the encyclical' should start - appeared contemporarily in France in Le Monde, in the U.K. in The Tablet and in the U.S.A in The National Catholic Reporter. Paul VI, however, after two years of wavering, published the encyclical Humanæ Vitæ on July 25th 1968, wherein he affirmed the traditional position of the Church, which has always forbidden the artificial limitation of births. It was, as the philosopher Romano Amerio said, the most important act of his pontificate.

Humanæ Vitæ became the object of unprecedented contestation, not only from theologians and priests, but also from some episcopates, beginning with the Belgian, headed by the primate Cardinal Leo Suenens, who, at the Council, had exclaimed in vehement tones: 'Let us follow the progress of science. I beseech you Brothers. Let us avoid a new Galilei trial. One is enough for the Church'. Cardinal Michele Pellegrino, Archbishop of Turin, defined the encyclical as 'one of the tragedies of papal history'.

In 1969, nine Dutch bishops, among whom was Cardinal Alfrink, voted on the so-called Declaration of Independence, which invited the faithful to reject the teaching of Humanæ Vitæ. On the same occasion the Dutch Pastoral Council with the abstention of bishops, took the side of the New Catechism, rejecting the corrections suggested by Rome and asking the Church to stay open to 'new radical approaches', on moral issues, not cited in the final motion but which emerged in the work of the Council: premarital relationships, homosexual unions, abortion and euthanasia'.In 1968, - Cardinal Francis J. Stafford recalls - something terrible happened in the Church. Within the priestly ministry, among friends, splits occurred everywhere, which would never ever again be repaired; those wounds continue to afflict the entire Church' (1968, l'anno della prova, in L'Osservatore Romano, 25th July 2008).

On the subject of contraception, Paul VI expressed himself in Humanæ Vitæ, in a manner which theologians judge as infallible and thus unmodifiable, not because the document in itself had the requisites of infallibility, but because it reaffirms a doctrine always proposed by the perennial Magisterium of the Church. The Jesuit theologians, Marcelino Zalba, John Ford and Gerald Kelly, the philosophers Arnaldo Xavier da Silveira and Germain Grisez, and many other authors, explain how the doctrine of Humanæ Vitæ needs to be considered infallible, not in virtue of the act of its promulgation, but because it confirms the ordinary, universal Magisterim of Popes and the Bishops of the world.

Monsignor Gilfredo Marengo, the prelate Pope Francis has entrusted with the task of re-reading Humanæ Vitæ, belongs, on the other hand, to the category of prelates who are convinced they are able to reconcile the irreconcilable. In September 2015, commenting in Vatican Insider on the work of the Synod on the Family, he suggested 'abandoning a conception of the doctrinal patrimony of the Church as a closed system, impermeable to questions and provocations of the here and now, in which the Christian community is called to justify its faith, through its proclamation and testimony:'

In a more recent article in the same Newspaper (Vatican Insider, March 23rd 2017) with the significant title, Humanæ Vitæ and Amoris laetitia, Monsignor Marengo asks if: 'the polemical game - the pill yes - the pill no, like today's - Communion to the divorced yes - Communion to the divorced no - is only an appearance of discomfort and strain,[ which is] much more descisive in the fabric of ecclesial life'. In fact, 'every time the Christian community falls into error and proposes models of life derived from too abstract and artificially constructed theological ideals, it conceives its pastoral action as the schematic application of a doctrinal paradigm'. 'A certain way of defending and acknowledging the teaching of Paul VI - he adds - was, probably one of the factors for which - he cites Pope Francis at this point - we have presented a too abstract theological ideal on marriage, almost artificially constructed, far from the concrete situation and the effective possibilities of families as they really are. This excessive idealization, above all when we have reawakened trust in grace, has not made marriage more attractive and desirable, but quite the opposite'. (Francis).

However, if the antithesis 'the pill yes - the pill no - like today's 'Communion to the divorced yes - Communion to the divorced no' is only a polemical game, the same principle could be applied to all of the great themes of the Faith and Morality: 'abortion yes - abortion no', but also 'the Resurrection yes - the Resurrection no' 'original sin yes - original sin no' and so on. The very contraposition between truth and error and good and evil, becomes at this point 'a polemical game'.

It should be noted that Monsignor Marengo does not propose to read Amoris laetitia along the lines of the hermeneutic of continuity. He does not deny the existence of a contradiction between the two documents: he admits that Amoris laetitia authorizes what Humanæ Vitæ prohibits. But he retains that every theological and doctrinal antithesis should be relativized and superseded in a synthesis which is able to reconcile opposites. The true dichotomy is that between the abstract and the concrete, between truth and life. What counts, for Monsignor Marengo, is to immerse oneself in pastoral praxis, without bending to 'too abstract and artificially constructed theological ideals'.

It will be praxis and not doctrine that indicates the line of action. Behavior, in short, is born of behavior. And no behavior can be subject to abstract theological and moral valuations'.Models for life' do not exist, there is only the flow of life, which accepts everything, justifies everything, sanctifies everything. The principle of immanence, struck down by St. Pius X in the encyclical Pascendi (1907), has been re-proposed in an exemplary manner.

Will there be any priest or theologian faced with this program of the 'reinterpretation' of Humanæ Vitæ, have the courage to utter the word 'heresy'?

[Lepanto Institute]


[FP] 2190.8























United Nations


UN official coming for your Church

MuntarbhornAUSTIN RUSE, President of C-Fam and publisher of the Friday Fax, writes : 'There is a new UN office to enforce a radical view of gay rights. It is headed by a man named Vitit Muntarbhorn. He met last week with the UN Human Rights Council and what he told them should frighten anyone with children, any practicing religious believer, and anyone who cares about freedom of religion.

First, he lied. He said his mandate is based on established international law. That is false and he knows it. There is no existing international law that even mentions LGBTs, or 'sexual orientation and gender identity'.

But, then he went further. Much further. He talked about how to deal with 'the hostile element,' that is, those who may oppose the imposition of radical sexuality on traditional people and reluctant governments and especially the Church. He said there is a primacy of 'human rights' over religion!

This gentleman apparently has never read the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which guarantees freedom of religion, which understands Religion is a human right! RRRR

Practically speaking what this means is that any person who believes what the Bible teaches on human sexuality, any person who believes what the Church teaches on human sexuality, and any Church that teaches Bible-based human sexuality is in violation of human rights and he is coming for them.

And, in the past, this gentleman has also said that he is going to target children for indoctrination!

For good measure, he also called for censorship of the internet to shut down those who may oppose him and his sexual rights agenda. That means he'd like to shut down the Friday Fax and any other outlet he deems 'hateful'.

Quite frankly, this kind of outrage would remain completely unknown if not for the Friday Fax, what you receive every Thursday afternoon. My colleague Stefano Gennarini got up at 3 o'clock in the morning to watch this man's live testimony to the Human Rights Council in Geneva.

That is why George Soros wants to shut us down. This is why the anti-Christian Southern Poverty Law Center put a target on our back. This is why the UN Population Fund threatened us with a lawsuit, why Catholics for Choice, Right Wing Watch and a plethora of leftist groups around the world follow our every move. They would love to shut us down because we expose them and beat them constantly.

Please help us stay on the battlements! RRRR

The Friday Fax is amazingly expensive. It costs upward of $250,000 per year to put it out. That includes rent, printing, postage (for our mail-edition), and massive costs for sending 25 million emails a year.

My pledge as always is that we will never ever stand down. Even though they hate us. We will never stop. And we will win. Please give as much as you can.

Do not be afraid of these people. We aren't.

[C-FAM] 2190.9

CF News / UN news

UN gives Ireland six months to make a plan to legalize abortion

A UNITED NATIONS human rights committee has announced that Ireland violated the rights of a woman who travelled to England to have an abortion.

The Irish Republic has been ordered to pay compensation to the mother, Siobhan Whelan, and to provide psychological treatment. The UN has also ordered Ireland to change its laws so that women can undergo abortions there. Currently, residents of Ireland who wish to end the lives of their unborn babies travel abroad, usually to the United Kingdom.

The UN has given Ireland six months to provide information on how it will comply with UN demands.

Whelan, now 47, was in the 20th week of a much-wanted pregnancy in 2010 when doctors at Wexford General Hospital told her that her baby had a rare congenital brain malformation. Subsequent tests revealed the baby also had Trisomy 13, or Patau syndrome, which she was told is 'incompatible with life'.

According to Britain's National Health Service, 9 of 10 babies born with Patau syndrome die within a year of birth. Five percent to 10 percent of babies born with less severe forms of the syndrome survive for more than a year.

Whelan's obstetrician told her that in other countries she would be offered an abortion, but 'obviously not in this country due to Irish law'.

Whelan and her husband decided to proactively end the life of their baby but found it 'difficult' to gather information about abortion services in England and to send records to a hospital there. According to the Guardian, however, almost 25,000 Irish women traveled to the United Kingdom for abortions between 2010 and 2014.

Despite their difficulties, Whelan and her husband reached Liverpool, where they had the baby killed in utero. Three weeks later, the baby was cremated, and the ashes were sent to Whelan by courier. The overall costs (including the cremation) were €2,900

Whelan established to the satisfaction of the UN committee that she suffered a 'high level of mental anguish' as a result of the 'actions and omissions' of the Irish State. According to the ruling, this violated the prohibition in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights against cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment.

This is the second time the UN has found Ireland guilty of not killing unborn babies. In 2016, a human rights committee ruled in favor of Amanda Mellett, an Irish-American woman who claimed that traveling from Ireland to the UK to kill her disabled child resulted in great emotional and psychological distress. Mellett was awarded €30,000 in compensation.

Whelan has stated that she is pleased with the ruling. She has called for a referendum on abortion'.In taking this case [to the UN], my hope was to help bring about a change in our laws, so that when faced with the tragic news of a fatal foetal impairment women would have a choice to end the pregnancy in Ireland and not be forced to carry the pregnancy to term or to travel out of our country to access health care services like I had to,' she said.

But Tracy Harkin of Ireland's Every Life Counts says it was appalling to see misinformation being pushed by a once-respected human rights body that now refers to babies with severe disabilities as 'fatal abnormalities' or ''incompatible with life'.

'The UN has upended all logic here, since it is abortion that is cruel, inhumane and degrading to both mother and baby,' she said in a press release sent to LifeSiteNews'.It's clear that this UN Committee has utterly failed to keep up with progressive, modern medicine or with the research that shows that abortion causes significantly more distress and despair to women in these circumstances'.

Harkin's own daughter, Kathleen Rose, has Trisomy 13, the condition described in this case as 'incompatible with life'. Kathleen Rose is 10 years old'.Would the UN tell her, to her face, that she has no right to life?' asked Harkin'.The truth is that every baby that is diagnosed is alive and kicking and has a right to life'. She pointed out also that parents have a right to 'that precious time with baby, which brings love and joy and healing'.

Harkin said research also showed that 90 percent of Irish parents continued with their pregnancies after such a diagnosis, but the voices and the needs of families were being drowned out in the clamor to legalize abortion.

Abortion is illegal in Ireland except where the mother's life is at risk. The right to life of the unborn child is guaranteed by the Irish Constitution.

[LSN] 2190.10



















News from around the world


Argentina Bishop receives divorcees into 'Full Communion'

BISHOP Ángel José Macín (50) of Reconquista, Argentina, presided last Sunday a Eucharist in the parish San Roque, Reconquista, during which he re-admitted around thirty couples of civilly remarried divorcees into 'full sacramental communion' with the Church, writes adelantelafe.com. The adulterers previously met during six month on Saturdays in what was called a 'camino de discernimiento' ('Path of Discernment').

Macín justified his move with Pope Francis' letter to the Buenos Aires bishops, in which he said in September 2016, that there was 'no other interpretation' of Amoris Laetitia than to allow adulterers to receive communion.

At the end of the Eucharist Macín distributed communion to the adulterers, while relatives took pictures. No reference was made to the biblical teaching on divorce and receiving Communion.

Pope Francis named Macín a bishop in October 2013.

[en.news] 2190.11

CF News / World news

Russia Russian Greek Catholic Church feels neglected by Rome

THE RUSSIAN GREEK Catholic Church accuses Pope Francis not to taking their concerns into account so as not to jeopardize the approach to the Russian Orthodox Church. This has been reported by the Wall Street Journal.

The leadership of the church, which is unified with Rome, wishes for its own bishop and resources for priestly formation. Currently, the Russian Greek Catholic Church is headed by Joseph Werth SJ, the Latin diocesan bishop of Novosibirsk.

'The survival of the Russian Greek Catholic Church is at stake,' says Lawrence Cross, one of her priests, who lives in Melbourne, Australia. The head of the Russian Greek Catholic Church is meeting for the first synod for a century in Bergamo (Italy).

The relationship with the Russian Orthodox Church is strained. The Moscow Patriarchate tolerates the Greek Catholic clergy in Russia. However, a bishop of the Greek Catholic Church in Russia is unacceptable to the Orthodox, says Ronald Roberson, an adviser to the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the United States. [But Orthodox Bishops in Italy are acceptable?]

With fewer than 30,000 members, the Russian Greek Catholic Church is one of the smallest churches in Rome. Most of them live outside Russia. There are communities in Western Europe, the USA, South America and Australia.

[kath.net/jg] 2190.12

CF News / World news

Sicily Bishops' Amoris Laetitia guidelines authorize Communion for adulterous couples

CHRISTOPHER A. FERRARA writes for Fatima Perspectives : 'The bishops of Buenos Aires, the bishops of Malta, and now the bishops of Sicily have joined the growing ranks of the episcopate who have begun a catastrophic fracturing of the Church's bi-millenial Eucharistic discipline by authorizing the reception of Holy Communion by divorced and civilly 'remarried' people living in what even the Catechism of John Paul II calls 'a situation of public and permanent adultery'.
The sole authority for this approval of mass sacrilege, of course, is nothing more than Amoris Laetitia (AL), Pope Bergoglio's astounding attempt to apply situation ethics to a universally binding, exceptionless negative precept of the natural law, divinely proclaimed in the Sixth Commandment.

The Sicilian bishops, as they must, have had to resort to sophistry - that is, thinly disguised lies and deception - to give Pope Bergoglio what he so ardently desires. In their 'guidelines' for the unleashing of mass sacrilege (translation provided by Rorate Caeli), the Sicilian bishops observe that 'The first novelty of AL, especially in Chapter 8, is its view on concrete situations, according to the dictum of Evangelii Gaudium that considers realities greater than ideas (see EG 31)'.

Pure hokum. There can be no 'novelty' in moral theology in the sense of suddenly allowing what the Church has always condemned as intrinsically impossible: partaking of the Blessed Sacrament while one maintains a sexual relationship with someone to whom he or she is not married.
The phrase 'realities greater than ideas' is nothing but a disguise for the lie that the moral precepts laid down by God are mere ideas that 'reality' often makes it 'impossible' to obey, even with the assistance of divine grace. That notion would mean the destruction of the entire moral edifice of the Church by reducing the natural law written on the heart of man to guide his conduct to mere 'ideas' that are inferior to 'realities'.

The phrase 'concrete situations' is nothing but situation ethics in disguise: whether one follows the natural law depends on his 'concrete situation'. As everyone's 'situation' is 'concrete,' under AL everyone living in an adulterous 'second marriage' could claim an excuse from adherence to the Sixth Commandment.

The bishops of Sicily continue with their moral nonsense­ - the moral nonsense that is AL - by declaring more openly their embrace of the Bergoglian 'novelty' of situation ethics, citing Pope Bergoglio as their sole authority:

'Another novelty is the consequence of another principle outlined in Evangelii Gaudium (EG 222): 'Since 'time is greater than space', I would make it clear that not all discussions of doctrinal, moral or pastoral issues need to be settled by interventions of the magisterium'. (AL 3). Consequently, we cannot expect unique rules for each situation, but we need a discernment over time among different situations, which does not rule out a priori or by decree the possibility of ecclesial communion for some, taking into account different levels of complementarity: between personal discernment and pastoral care (see AL 122), between the internal forum and the external forum (see EG 44), between ecclesial participation and access to the sacraments (see AL 299). In this respect, it is no small matter that Pope Francis states in EG 47: 'The Eucharist, although it is the fullness of sacramental life, is not a prize for the perfect but a powerful medicine and nourishment for the weak'. It is no coincidence that this text is cited in footnote 351 in AL 305'.

This morally subversive blather boils down to the lie that the Sixth Commandment applies differently to different people depending upon their 'different situations,' which is nothing but situation ethics, an invention of the devil.

Here the Sicilian bishops cite Pope Bergoglio's demagogic slogan that 'The Eucharist… is not a prize for the perfect but a powerful medicine and nourishment for the weak'. In other words, objective mortal sinners should receive Holy Communion as 'nourishment' while they continue to commit the same mortal sin. By that logic, all habitual mortal sinners should be admitted to Holy Communion, which is exactly the opposite of what the Church has always taught: that no one conscious of grave sin may approach the Blessed Sacrament.

Moreover, as the phony 'process of discernment' is supposed to inform public adulterers that their 'second marriages' constitute objective mortal sin, according to the words of Christ Himself, people living in such adulterous unions cannot fail to be conscious of the sin. Unless, that is, they are now to be told that their adulterous unions are not adulterous because of their 'concrete situations,' which is exactly what is happening.

The Sicilian bishops conceal their outright subversion of the moral order with additional meaningless blather: 'The formulations of AL cautiously open up a possibility of access to the Sacraments, which lies only in the place of discernment based on dialogue: it is not a canonical norm, but the potential outcome of a journey, the fruit of discernment and of a personal and pastoral maturity (see AL 298)'.

Please! The phrases 'cautiously open up a possibility,' 'only in the place of discernment based on dialogue,' 'not a canonical norm' and 'discernment and of a personal and pastoral maturity' are mere window dressing for the authorization of mass sacrilege. The claim that this will be allowed only in cases of 'personal and pastoral maturity' is laughable: a mature Catholic conscience will recognize adultery for what it is and cease offending God if the sinner is truly repentant.
So, what about true repentance? Citing only Pope Bergoglio's 'novelties' as their authority, the Sicilian bishops declare:

'In every situation, - the Pope remembers - when dealing with those who have difficulties in living God's law to the full, the invitation to pursue the via caritatis must be clearly heard. (AL 306). This welcoming of the invitation is necessary even if one cannot demand from the repentant penitent more than he can give. The requirement to gain access to the sacraments is repentance and the commitment to pursue a new path, human and spiritual, in the present objective situation in which the person finds himself, and not the abstract perfection. There are circumstances, in fact, in which every norm gets brought back to its proper end, which is the salvation of souls, the good of persons'.

Translation: a public adulterer can continue his adultery while receiving Holy Communion if ceasing his adultery is 'more than he can give'. Thus, the Sicilian bishops­, doing just what Francis wishes them to do, now authorize Holy Communion for unrepentant adulterers who, through a nonsensical 'process of discernment,' have persuaded themselves ­- with the help of the Sicilian bishops! - that God does not expect them to cease their adultery because this would be 'more than they can give'. According to that moral calculus, mortal sin is simply no longer an impediment to Holy Communion if one determines according to his own private judgment that he is unable to stop committing the sin. Along with true repentance, the assistance of God's grace is completely written out of the picture. 

The Sicilian bishops conclude their sophistry with another deception: 'To avoid relegating these people [the divorced and 'remarried'] to a kind of 'de facto limbo' - on the one hand, they are not excommunicated, on the other hand, they are not in full communion with the Church - it ought to be considered that their condition is temporary, not from the spiritual point of view, because it is susceptible to change, conversion, and purification'.

The divorced and 'remarried' have not been 'relegated' by the Church to their situation of exclusion from the Sacraments. Rather, they have relegated themselves by their own freely willed decision to take up with 'partners' to whom they are not married and to engage in sexual relations with them. They can achieve 'full communion' simply by doing what the Church has always required as a matter of divine and natural law: repent of this sinful behavior and cease their sexual relations outside of marriage.

But what the Church has always required in faithfulness to the instructions of Our Lord Himself is, according to the Sicilian bishops, no longer required. Why? Because Pope Bergoglio has purported to dispense with the requirement - something not even a Pope has any authority to do, as it would contradict the constant teaching of the Church affirmed by both John Paul II and Benedict XVI.
The Catholic Church is not a cult governed by a guru, who issues the latest instructions for the cult members to follow. She is the ark of salvation whose integrity depends precisely on the constancy of her teaching, a reflection of the God who does not change His mind. Thus, AL cannot bind the Church to its 'novelties,' nor does Pope Bergoglio himself dare to proclaim that he is doing so. Rather, he winks and nods at those who follow his sly suggestions to undermine the moral order.
Never has the Church witnessed such a spectacle. The signs are many that a dramatic resolution of this debacle cannot be long in coming.


[FP] 2190.12a

CF News / World news

United Kingdom Northern Ireland MPs under attack for defending life

SPUC, The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children, has launched a petition calling on Prime Minister Theresa May to condemn attacks on Northern Ireland MPs who oppose abortion and same-sex 'marriage'.

The petition has been drawn up in the wake of widespread criticism of the proposed deal with the socially conservative Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) to keep the minority Conservative government in power. The last few days have seen an outpouring of attacks on the DUP in the media and from politicians over the views of the Northern Ireland MPs to adhere to Christian positions on abortion and marriage.

The petition calls on the prime minister to condemn the anti-Christian bigotry on display in the attacks on pro-life and socially conservative MPs, and recognise that holding these values is not 'extremist'.

Labour MP Jo Stevens tweeted that a pact with the DUP was 'chilling' after it was suggested it might spark a debate on abortion among the Conservative party. Headlines have included 'a government that includes the DUP is profoundly bad news for women'.

A BPAS spokeswoman said that '10 MPs with quite frankly extremist views on abortion must not be allowed to threaten an area of healthcare that 1 in 3 women will need in their lifetime'.

Liam Gibson, SPUC's Northern Ireland Development Officer, explained why the petition is necessary:

'Northern Ireland has steadfastly resisted every effort to implement the legalisation of abortion which would inevitably result in a slaughter of innocent babies. That's why Northern Ireland MPs whose support Theresa May needs to form a government are under such unremitting attack by the pro-abortion lobby right now.

'Their position reflects the views of the overwhelming majority of people in Northern Ireland as well as a solid block of opinion in Britain.

'This petition will give people the opportunity to send a message to the Prime Minister urging her to stand up to the bullies and the bigots seeking to demonise anyone who rejects the social policies which have led to the killing of over 8.7 million unborn children under the Abortion Act in Britain'.

SPUC CEO John Smeaton added: 'The pro-life and pro-family citizens of Britain and Northern Ireland will not be silenced by the vicious attacks on the pro-life and pro-family values of Northern Ireland MPs who are currently in the spotlight as Theresa May seeks to form a government with their support'.



[LSN] 2190.13

CF News / World news

International gloria.tv.news


[gloria.tv] 2190.14

CF News / World news

International The Prophet Voris



[CMTV] 2190.15

CF News / World news

International The World Over with Raymond Arroyo



[EWTN] 2190.17






















The relationship between reason and historical facts

IN THIS LECTURE, delivered during the spring 2011 semester on 'The Christian Personalism of Blessed John Henry Newman', Dr. Crosby, professor of philosophy at Franciscan University of Steubenville, discusses Newman's distinction between formal and informal logic, between narrowly defined terms inserted into nearly mathematical syllogisms and encountering truth in the full organic complexity of thought and reality.




University of Steubenville] 2190.18















Why Bishops should condemn Fr. Martin's dangerous Bridge

uilding a BridgeBRIAN WILLIAMS writes : 'The crisis in the Church today is accelerating at a speed surprising even by post-conciliar standards. Nowhere is this more obvious than the current shift in how the Catholic Church addresses homosexuality. The election of Pope Francis four years ago, the subsequent synods on the family, and several strategic promotions within the hierarchy have led to a watershed moment in the 2,000 history of the Church.

Later this month Harper Collins will publish the latest book from Jesuit Fr. James Martin, editor at large of America Magazine. Fr. Martin is also well known for his large social media presence (over 100,000 followers on Twitter and more than a half million on Facebook), as well as his past appearances on the Colbert Report on Comedy Central, and his consultative work on Martin Scorsese's recent movie Silence. He was also recently tagged by Pope Francis to join the Secretariat of Communications dicastery in Rome as a consultant on means of evangelizing the world in the digital age.

Herein lies the problem, and it's known by everyone in the Church, but sadly too often excused or dismissed: Fr. James Martin has become a vocal activist for 'LGBT Catholics', even going so far as to receive awards from dissident groups like New Ways Ministry (who openly support same sex marriage and call for the Church to evolve on this issue).

Fr. Martin also frequently takes to social media with articles and quotes in support of LGBT activism and talking points, only to receive praise from his followers. When doctrine is misstated by those very same followers, or they openly endorse homosexual acts as being holy and normal, he fails to correct them. That he sows confusion is evident after only a few minutes of reviewing his social media accounts.

In many ways, however, Fr. James Martin is a perfect representation of the contemporary Church. He is a post-conciliar poster child. He is the embodiment of the new Francis Church, where accompaniment, encounter, and dialogue ('building bridges') have pride of place over outdated words such as sin, repentance, conversion, grace, judgement, Heaven, or Hell.

One only need to look at the endorsements given his soon to be released book Building a Bridge to realize where we are today. We are experiencing one of the great crises in the history of the Church.

Not one, but two recently-promoted cardinals have endorsed Fr. Martin's book. Cardinal Kevin Farrell, whom Pope Francis appointed as Prefect of the Dicastery for Laity, Family, and Life, writes:

'A welcome and much-needed book that will help bishops, priests, pastoral associates, and all church leaders more compassionately minister to the LGBT community. It will also help LGBT Catholics feel more at home in what is, after all, their church'.

Cardinal Joseph Tobin of Newark, New Jersey says:

'In too many parts of our church LGBT people have been made to feel unwelcome, excluded, and even shamed. Father Martin's brave, prophetic, and inspiring new book marks an essential step in inviting church leaders to minister with more compassion, and in reminding LGBT Catholics that they are as much a part of our church as any other Catholic'.

The very problematic and progressive Bishop Robert McElroy of San Diego, appointed by Pope Francis, writes:

'The Gospel demands that LGBT Catholics must be genuinely loved and treasured in the life of the church. They are not. [Fr. Martin] provides us with the language, perspective, and sense of urgency to replace a culture of alienation with a culture of merciful inclusion'.

And then, among the endorsements of these prelates, we find Sr. Jeannine Gramick of the previously mentioned New Ways Ministry:

'Father Martin shows how the Rosary and the rainbow flag can peacefully meet each other. A must-read'.

So why would New Ways Ministry invite Fr. Martin to address their Bridge Building Award ceremony, and why would Sr. Gramick be asked to endorse his new book? After all, neither seek accompaniment, but rather acceptance-not of themselves but of their lifestyle.

And this is why we, the laity, need our bishops and priests - those who still hold to the gospel truth and Catholic doctrine - to condemn this bridge of Fr. Martin's and an increasing number of bishops and cardinals. The bridge being built isn't designed for repentance, conversion, and sanctity. It is not a bridge built to lead souls to heaven. In fact, the entire language of this current movement is completely void of the supernatural. It is therapeutic language solely focused on a temporal end: acceptance. It is capitulation to the cultural left rather than proclamation of the gospel truth.

This proposed accompaniment and encounter, this bridge being built, is not meant to bring souls out of sin and into a life of grace, but rather it seeks the conversion of the Church. It waits for the Church to evolve on this topic. Few in the movement care whether or not doctrine can or will change (it can't); pastoral evolution accomplishes their work for them. At least for now.

By comparison, look to the international apostolate Courage which seeks to help people struggling with same sex attraction. From their site:

'Persons with homosexual desires have always been with us; however, until recent times, there has been little, if any, formal outreach from the Church in the way of support groups or information for such persons. Most were left to work out their path on their own. As a result, they found themselves listening to and accepting the secular society's perspective and opting to act on their same-sex desires'.

In concluding their purpose, Courage notes:

'In helping individuals gain a greater understanding and appreciation of the Church's teachings, especially in the area of chastity, Courage extends the Church's invitation to a life of peace and grace. In chaste living, one finds the peace and grace to grow in Christian maturity'.

But here is why an apostolate like Courage will receive no public endorsement from the cardinals and bishop quoted above, or from Fr. James Martin: it begins with the clearly stated understanding that the homosexual act, just like pre-marital sex, or adultery, or any other sin of the flesh, must be conquered. Their accompaniment does not come at the cost of sowing confusion or with a tacit endorsement of a continuing homosexual lifestyle.

What Courage does have that the erroneous new movement doesn't is a profoundly spiritual component. This is their bridge, designed to bring active homosexuals back into a life of grace:

1. To live chaste lives in accordance with the Roman Catholic Church's teaching on homosexuality. ( Chastity )

2. To dedicate our entire lives to Christ through service to others, spiritual reading, prayer, meditation, individual spiritual direction, frequent attendance at Mass, and the frequent reception of the sacraments of Reconciliation and Holy Eucharist. (Prayer and Dedication)

3. To foster a spirit of fellowship in which we may share with one another our thoughts and experiences, and so ensure that no one will have to face the problems of homosexuality alone. (Fellowship)

4.To be mindful of the truth that chaste friendships are not only possible but necessary in a chaste Christian life; and to encourage one another in forming and sustaining these friendships. (Support)

5. To live lives that may serve as good examples to others. (Good Example/Role Model)

The other reason why this new bridge being built is dangerous and must be condemned is that it is part of the ongoing movement to discontinue the very language found in the Catechism of the Catholic Church related to same sex attraction. This, sadly, is consistent with the message being given by Rome these days. But nevertheless, the Catechism instructs:

'Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that 'homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered'. They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved'. (CCC 2357)

The genesis of Fr. James Martin's book was an America Magazine essay entitled, Simply Loving, and his address at the October 2016 New Ways Ministry event. Both taken together provide us with the strategy being employed to de-emphasize and confuse the Church's teaching on human sexuality. We can generally break down this faulty bridge building into three components:

The Absence of Conversion: Unlike the Courage apostolate, nowhere in this strategy is repentance or conversion discussed. Instead, the focus is on the overly feminized and therapeutic language objectives of 'respect, compassion, and sensitivity'. Fr. Martin notes that this comes directly from paragraph 2358 of the Catechism. However, when separated from the preceding language of the paragraph above, the context and balance is completely lost. Intentionally so. Authentic Catholic accompaniment requires that we include the language of sin and grace, mercy and judgement. Anything less is simply giving our struggling brothers and sisters a false compassion, or worse, affirmation of their error.

The Secular Language of the LGBT Left: Fr. Martin states that people have a right to name themselves. He told his audience at the New Ways ceremony:

'Names are important. Thus, church leaders are invited to be attentive to how they name the L.G.B.T. community and lay to rest phrases like 'afflicted with same-sex attraction,' which no L.G.B.T. person I know uses, and even 'homosexual person,' which seems overly clinical to many…I'm saying that people have a right to name themselves. Using those names is part of respect'.

In the current environment where self-definition has grown to include gender fluidity and transgenderism, Fr. Martin's words are eerily similar to that of the sexual left. Further, the actual designation of 'LGBT' for a group of people was a 1990's construct of the secular Left. This is an identification with a set of beliefs and an agenda, one based on the approval and promotion of homosexuality as normal behavior. And this brings us to the third and final strategic aim…

The Depersonalization of the SSA Catholic: What the Courage apostolate does so well, and what the Catholic religion has always instructed, is to recognize the dignity of the individual. Fr. Martin and those bishops who support him also claim this. The problem, however, is that the LGBT label and movement that they have decided to embrace does just the opposite. The individual takes a backseat to the group and to the behavior. The same-sex attracted Catholic is defined by their sexuality and through identity politics.

It is interesting to note that Fr. Martin acknowledged this himself during his address at New Ways Ministry, although the irony of it seems to have been lost upon him:

'In this, as in all things, Jesus is our model. When Jesus encountered people on the margins, he saw not a category but a person'.

This is not the model he is following however.

What must be done at this time is for faithful bishops, priests, and laity to openly oppose this false mercy proposed through a faulty bridge.

Bishops are the local ordinary for their diocese. They can deny any priest or bishop from speaking within their parishes and authorized conferences. This is what many have done with retired auxiliary Bishop Thomas Gumbleton of Detroit, who has frequented some of these very same New Ways Ministry events in the past.

Fr. James Martin will no doubt be promoting this new book heavily in the coming weeks. He will very likely be asked to speak at some parishes or on local Catholic radio. Our bishops and priests, and those in the laity with a platform to communicate the message, must help prevent further confusion.

No one is more threatened by this dangerous bridge than those brothers and sisters with same sex attraction. Let us see more of our priests and prelates directing them toward an apostolate like Courage, and away from those who would seek to 'accompany' them right off the cliff.

[Originally published at LiturgyGuy.com. The post has been updated, 1P5].

[1P5] 2190.B1

CF News / Books

Devastating report

The Political Pope; How Pope Francis is Delighting the Liberal Left and Abandoning Conservatives. . George Neumayr. Pub. Center Street, New York. 277 pages ISBN 978-1-4555-7016-4 Amazon , £20

TIRED of the Left's propaganda about Francis as 'the greatest pope ever'? Tired of the chattering class and the celebrities fawning over him as he enlists the Church to radical political causes and undercuts Catholic teaching? George Neumayr offers an antidote to the spin. In The Political Pope, he provides the first in-depth, unflinchingly critical account of Francis's pontificate. Far from revitalising the Church, Pope Francis is dividing it as he promotes political liberalism and doctrinal relativism.

George Neumayr is former executive director of The American Spectator, op-ed editor of The Investor's Business Daily, and written for The Washington Times, National Review Online, Human Events, New Oxford Review and The Guardian. He is former editor of The Catholic World Report andformer media fellow at Stanford' Hoover Institution.

[CF News] 2190.BK2
























Gay icon 1


LGBT movement adopts horror movie demon as 'Icon'

STEVE SKOJEC reports for OnePeterFive : 'In a series of articles hitting the Internet over the past week, something surreal is being served up as though it is perfectly normal. A repugnant creature that terrifies and possesses its victims in a 2014 Australian horror movie has, for some reason, been adopted as an 'LGBT icon'. The headlines are almost breathless with excitement:

'The Babadook: how the horror movie monster became a gay icon'- The Guardian

'The Secret Gay History of the Babadook'- NYMag.com

'People Are Dressing Up As The Babadook For Pride And It's Beautiful' - Buzzfeed

And perhaps most explicitly:

'How the Babadook became the LGBTQ icon we didn't know we needed: How terrorizing a white Australian family became an act of queer defiance'. - Vox

The plot synopsis for the film on Wikipedia is predictably disturbing. A widow whose husband died in an accident as he drove her to give birth to her now six-year old son begins seeing the child's behavior change as he grows obsessed with an imaginary monster. The synopsis continues:

'One night, Sam asks his mother to read a pop-up storybook: Mister Babadook. It describes the titular monster, the Babadook, a tall pale-faced humanoid in a top hat with pointed fingers who torments its victims after they become aware of its existence. RRRR Amelia is disturbed by the book and its mysterious appearance, while Sam becomes convinced that the Babadook is real. Sam's persistence about the Babadook leads Amelia to often have sleepless nights as she tries to comfort him.

'Soon after, strange events occur: doors open and close mysteriously by themselves, strange sounds are heard and Amelia finds glass shards in her food. She attributes the events to Sam's behaviour, but he blames the Babadook. Amelia rips up the book and disposes of it. At Sam's cousin Ruby's birthday party, Ruby bullies Sam for not having a father, in response to which he pushes her out of her tree house and breaks her nose in two places. Amelia's sister Claire admits she cannot bear Sam to which Amelia takes great offence. On the drive home, Sam has another vision of the Babadook and suffers a febrile seizure, after which Amelia makes a successful plea for sedatives to a paediatrician.

'The following morning, Amelia finds the Mister Babadook book reassembled on the front door step. New words taunt her by saying that the Babadook will become stronger if she continues to deny its existence, RRRR containing pop-ups of her killing her dog Bugsy, Samuel and then herself. Terrified, Amelia burns the book and runs to the police after a disturbing phone call. However, Amelia has no proof of the stalking, and when she then sees the Babadook's suit hung up behind the front desk, she leaves. Amelia starts to become more isolated and shut-in, being more impatient, shouting at Samuel for 'disobeying' her constantly, and having frequent visions of the Babadook once again.

'One night, Amelia sees a vision of Oskar, who agrees to return if she gives him Sam. Fleeing, Amelia is stalked by the Babadook through the house until it takes over her and finally possesses her, RRRR breaking Bugsy's neck, and attempting to kill Sam. Eventually luring her into the basement, Sam knocks her out. Amelia awakens, tied up in the basement, with a terrified Sam nearby. When she tries to strangle him, he lovingly caresses her face, causing her to throw up an inky black substance, an action which seemingly expels the Babadook. When Sam reminds Amelia that X 'you can't get rid of the Babadook', RRRR an unseen force drags him into Amelia's bedroom. After saving Sam, Amelia is forced by the Babadook to rewatch a vision of her husband's death, to her utter despair. She then furiously confronts the Babadook, and is then able to make the beast retreat into the basement, where she locks the door behind it.

'After the ordeal, Amelia and Samuel have managed to recover. Amelia is attentive and caring toward him, encouraging him with the weapons he makes and being impressed at Sam's magic tricks. They gather earthworms in a bowl and Amelia takes them to the basement, where the Babadook resides. She places the bowl on the floor for the Babadook to eat. However, as the beast tries to attack her, Amelia calms it down, and it retreats to the corner taking the earthworms along with it. Amelia returns to the yard to celebrate Sam's birthday'. [emphasis added]

Pleasant, isn't it? And yet in the sentences I emphasized, you can see the theme beginning to emerge: You can't deny the existence of gays. If you try to ignore us we'll only assert ourselves more. You may run from us at first, but eventually you will be taken over by our cause, whether you like it or not. You can't ever put us back in the closet.RRRR

Am I reading too much into it? I don't think so. Why else would the gay 'movement' adopt something so repellent to represent them? The Babadook has been showing up at 'Gay Pride' events this year, the ironic juxtaposition of the words and image on signs like this one apparently lost on the crowd:


Icon 2

So how did this happen?

Most likely, the film's monster was intended to be a visceral representation of the oppressive nature of grief or depression. But like refracted light, LGBT advocates co-opted The Babadook, taking to the Internet to identify it as a gay metaphor (warning: some coarse language at the link):

'One of the earliest, most popular queer readings of The Babadook surfaced in October 2016, when Tumblr user Ianstagram posted a thought complaint: 'Whenever someone says the Babadook isn't openly gay it's like?? Did you even watch the movie???'


'A couple of months later, BuzzFeed's Ryan Broderick posted a somewhat mocking appraisal of Tumblr's 'Babadiscourse' on Twitter. But Ianstagram defended his reading: 'A movie about a gay man who just wants to live his life in a small Australian suburb?' he wrote'.It may be 'just a movie' to you, but to the LGBT community, the Babadook is a symbol of our journey'.

The question on every sane person's mind is: Why? RRRR

Why use something horrifying and evil to represent your cause, particularly when you've been trying for quite some time to shrug off accusations that your cause is…horrifying and evil?

The Babadook isn't a nuisance. It isn't cute. It isn't even a run-of-the-mill monster. It is an active threat. It terrorizes a widow and her young son. It causes violence. It eventually takes possession of a human being, compelling her to do horrible things.

In other words, it is essentially a demon.

As bizarre as it seems, a social movement that promotes sodomy and other depravity and corrupting our youth with their ideology has now chosen as an icon a creature that appears and acts like a demon visiting torture upon the innocent. The logic behind identifying with such an abhorrent being makes a perverse sort of sense, but it always worries me when the enemy becomes too obvious and overt in making his presence known rather than hiding in the shadows.

Then again, maybe they're just too far gone to care what anyone else thinks. St. Peter Damian asserts that the sin of sodomy 'surpasses the enormity of all others' because:

'Without fail, it brings death to the body and destruction to the soul. It pollutes the flesh, extinguishes the light of the mind, expels the Holy Spirit from the temple of the human heart, and gives entrance to the devil, the stimulator of lust. It leads to error, totally removes truth from the deluded mind … It opens up hell and closes the gates of paradise … It is this vice that violates temperance, slays modesty, strangles chastity, and slaughters virginity … It defiles all things, sullies all things, pollutes all things …

'This vice excludes a man from the assembled choir of the Church … it separates the soul from God to associate it with demons…. Unmindful of God, he also forgets his own identity. This disease erodes the foundation of faith, saps the vitality of hope, dissolves the bond of love. It makes way with justice, demolishes fortitude, removes temperance, and blunts the edge of prudence.

If you've listened to my podcasts (here and here) with Joseph Sciambra, you have some idea of the darkness into which those in the LGBT 'community' inevitably sink. It takes them to places - physically, spiritually, mentally, and emotionally - that must make horror movies pale in comparison. Perhaps to them, The Babadook is a relatively harmless figure, no more frightening than their own reflection.

Joseph's testimony about the importance of his father praying the rosary for him to come out of the darkness is a powerful and moving story of another kind. It reminds us that we, too, should be praying and asking Our Lady to obtain the grace to free these poor, wounded souls from the clutches of the enemy and the ravages of one of the sins that 'cries out to heaven for vengeance'.

There is no end in sight to the war against purity, and it will continue to get worse before it gets better. May God have mercy on our souls.

[1P5] 2190.19























Comment from the internet


Accommodating adultery, sodomy and abortion in the Church


Francis with gays

Pope Bergoglio greets 'gay' former student and
boyfriend at meeting he personally arranged.


CHRISTOPHER A. FERRARA writes for Fatima Perspectives : 'After four years of affliction by the current occupant of the Chair of Peter, it is clear that Pope Bergoglio, as incredible as it may seem, is programmatically committed to accommodating adultery, sodomy and even the toleration of abortion in the life of the Church. If that claim seems wildly extreme, consider the following irrefutable evidence:

Bishop Ángel José Macín (age 50) of Reconquista, Argentina, whom Francis made a bishop during the first year of his pontificate, has just presided over a sacrilegious Mass 'during which he re-admitted around thirty couples of civilly remarried divorcees into 'full sacramental communion' with the Church,' thereby overthrowing the bimillenial Eucharistic discipline of the Church in defense of her infallible teaching on the indissolubility of sacramental marriage.

These couples will now be permitted to partake regularly of the Blessed Sacrament while continuing sexual relationships with people to whom they are not married. Citing Amoris Laetitia as his sole authority, Macín created a sham 'path of discernment' consisting of Saturday meetings of the adulterous couples during which they 'discerned' that they were ready to receive Holy Communion while continuing to live in adultery.

There is no longer any question - if there ever was - that this abomination is exactly what Francis has plotted and schemed to introduce into the life of the Church from the moment he emerged from the papal conclave of 2013. Recall that he began the process by praising the arch-heretic Cardinal Kasper's book on 'mercy' during his first papal address from the balcony of the papal apartments he had abandoned as his residence. Following the rigged 'Synod on the Family,' he closed the circle by informing the bishops of Buenos Aires, in response to the query (which he had probably solicited), that 'there is no other interpretation' of AL than the one Macín has just given it.

Having demolished John Paul II's Pontifical Academy for Life by sacking every one of its members and having its new President, the 'pro-gay' Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia (of obscene mural fame), draw up new statutes for the Academy, Pope Bergoglio has approved as one of the new appointees Nigel Biggar, an Anglican professor of 'moral and pastoral theology' at Oxford, who, as Edward Pentin reports, 'has in the past supported legalized abortion up to 18 weeks and has expressed qualified support for euthanasia'.

Bear mind in mind that Pope Bergoglio has abolished the pro-life oath formerly taken by members of the Academy. Moreover, in the letter purporting to grant priests the power they already had to absolve the sin of abortion, he referred to abortion as an 'agonizing and painful decision' - as if the deliberate killing of an innocent were merely a 'decision' (however sinful) that troubles the mother as opposed to an act of murder that is one of the sins that cries out to heaven for retribution. Pope Bergoglio has also distanced himself from the pro-life movement in Italy, while replacing a staunchly pro-life Argentine bishop rejected as a military chaplain by the leftist government of Argentina with a suitably quiescent prelate who will not ruffle the ruling elite's feathers.

Also numbered among the new appointees to the Academy is none other than Anne-Marie Pelletier, professor of Sacred Scripture, Bible and Liturgy at the École Cathédrale in Paris, whom Pope Francis tapped to write his Way of the Cross meditations at the Colosseum this year. As Edward Pentin notes, Pelletier - surprise, surprise­­ - is a 'supporter of some remarried divorcees receiving holy Communion…'

Worse, Pelletier attended the 2015 'shadow synod', which 'looked at ways to better welcome those living in stable same-sex unions'. Francis has made it clear that he has no problem with 'stable same-sex unions' by granting private audiences to 'gay' and 'transgender' couples, whom he embraced, and by refusing to oppose the legalization of 'homosexual unions' in Italy.

And let us not forget that it was Pope Bergoglio who read and approved the infamous 'midterm report' of Phony Synod 2014, wherein we read that 'Homosexuals have gifts and qualities to offer to the Christian community,' that the Church must be 'capable of providing that, accepting and valuing their sexual orientation' and that 'homosexual unions' provide 'mutual aid to the point of sacrifice [that] constitutes a precious support in the life of the partners'. Recall as well that Francis insisted that this abominable document, a disgrace to the Bride of Christ, be included in the proceedings of Synod 2015 even though it was rejected by the Synod Fathers.

From a purely historical perspective the Bergoglian pontificate would constitute, for the inquiring historian, the most fascinating anomaly in the entire history of the Church: a Pope who attacks the foundations of the Church's moral edifice by undermining her teaching on marriage, procreation and sexuality. For the Catholic faithful, however, this pontificate is an unparalleled ecclesial disaster of truly apocalyptic proportions. We must never allow ourselves to become inured to this moral travesty, but rather must expose and oppose it while praying for the Church's deliverance from the rule of the most wayward Pope the Church has ever seen.

Our Lady of Fatima, intercede for us!

[FP] 2190.19a

CF News / Comment from the internet

The Pope, the Hypocrisy, the Yes Yes, No No, Amoris Laetitia, the Dubia, and the Synod of Bishops with a pre-cooked ending

MARCO TOSATTI writes : 'Two days ago [on June 6th] in Santa Marta, the Pontiff addressed the issue of hypocrisy. Vatican Radio reported all his words, of which we here offer some excerpts:RRRR

We know how much hypocrisy can be a defect of ecclesiastical circles, of those who 'speak and judge' [one way] but think something else. This is hypocrisy.

'And hypocrisy is not the language of Jesus. Hypocrisy is not the language of Christians.

A Christian cannot be a hypocrite and a hypocrite is not a Christian. So this is clear. This is the word that Jesus uses the most with these people: hypocrite. Let's see how these people proceed. The hypocrite is always a flatterer or in a greater or lesser tone, but he is a flatterer '… Another aspect emphasized is that of deception:' The language of hypocrisy is the language of deceit, it is the same language the serpent used with Eve'. It begins with flattery, he said, and ends up destroying people; it even 'tears to pieces the personality and the soul of a person. It destroys communities When there are hypocrites in a community - he warned - there is a great danger there, there is a very awful danger'. The Lord Jesus told us: ''Let your speech be yes, yes, no, no. Anything more than this is from the evil one'.'.

'Hypocrisy is so bad for the Church,' the Pontiff said bitterly. And he warned against 'those Christians who fall into this sinful attitude that kills'. He concluded with a prayer: 'Let us ask the Lord to keep us from falling into this habit of hypocrisy, of the attitude, of putting on makeup, but with bad intentions. May the Lord give us this grace: 'Lord, let me never be a hypocrite, that I may know to tell the truth and if I cannot speak it, to keep silent, but never, ever, hypocrisy .

Reading these words, some things came back to my mind, written on the occasion of the double Synod on the Family, which gave birth to Amoris Laetitia, and the 'Dubia', to which a simple answer was requested, yes or no (see above …) that never came, and perhaps will never come.* * *

I'll start with the most recent episode. On San Pietro e Dintorni, on May 9, 2016, I reported a piece of news - a statement by a person which has never been questioned. I wrote:

'In a recent conference, at which you can read here the report on Zonalocale, the archbishop of Vasto, Mgr. Bruno Forte, revealed a behind the scenes moment of his discussions with Pope Francis, in relation to the Synod of Bishops on the family. The Pope confided in him: 'If we speak explicitly about communion for divorced and remarried, you do not know what a terrible mess we will make. So we won't speak plainly, do it in a way that the premises are there, then I will draw out the conclusions'.

'Mons. Forte was Special Secretary of the Synod of Bishops, author of the controversial 'interim relatio' repudiated by the President of the Assembly, Cardinal Erd? , and substantially not accepted by the Synod working groups.

'And Msgr. Forte commented: 'Typical of a Jesuit'. Adding that the apostolic exhortation 'is not a new doctrine, but the merciful application of that of all time'.

'If the anecdote told by Msgr. Forte is true, and there is no reason to doubt it, one may better understand the degree of confusion and ambiguity, as well as diversity of interpretations, aroused by the apostolic exhortation, that is, a deliberate lack of clarity that brings to mind the polemics and the secularist accusations that for centuries have marked the Society of Jesus - the result of a strategy planned since before the work of the Synod of 2014 had begun.

'As an aside, and to illustrate the complexity, in order to call it, at least thus, a situation of the Church, we report what the head of Lefebvrian community, Msgr. Bernard Fellay, said on May 1: '… Let us ask God to help us understand this mystery a little better and understand that despite all human misery, despite the fact that even a pope is now saying unbelievable things on morality and trying to tell us that sin is the state of grace - what we are hearing today is unbelievable, unheard of! - well, despite that, this pope can still accomplish actions that sanctify and save. He can do good and he still does'.

'If even they who are always so certain and secure experience perplexity, what about the poor Christians in the parishes?'.

The second reference is further back. It dates back even to September 2014, BEFORE the first of the two Synods on the Family began. I was talking about the vexed question of the Eucharist to divorced and remarried, and wrote :

'But anyhow! Cardinal Kasper, who already twenty years ago had his own idea about it, not accepted in those two kingdoms, saw in the advent of Bergoglio the opportunity to present it again. Despite the fact that from Manila to Berlin, from New York to Africa, the vast majority of his colleagues have, once again, reaffirmed the doctrine of the Church, based, unfortunately, on the words of Jesus; one of the few cases in which the statement appears sharp, clear, definite, and even questioned by professional pericope dissectors.

'In short, things for Kasper & Co. did not have the air of going very well. But perhaps there is a way to help him. And to try to prevent the troublesome voices from being too loud.

'The first step consists in asking that the written interventions be delivered well in advance, which was done. By September 8, those who wanted to make interventions at the Synod were to have submitted them.

'Second: to carefully read all the interventions, and in the case that some of them were particularly spicy, before the difficult intervention, to give the floor to a speaker who already tried to answer, in whole or in part, the problems raised by the intervention itself.

'Third: if some intervention appears simply problematic, to say that unfortunately there is insufficient time to give the floor to everyone, but that the text has been received, and remains on record, and certainly this will be taken into account in the final production.

'And, in fact, the Synod will not be so important, but rather the synthesis that will be prepared, and that will bear the Pope's signature as the 'post-synodal Exhortation'. It is very likely that there will be a clear and definitive text, but based on a 'fluctuating' interpretation, so that each one reading it, can pull out the part that most suits them.

'This is the humble observation of a poor reporter: but if one has such an elaborate and cunning plan, why talk about it in front of perfect strangers during a sumptuous dinner?' RRRR

The prelate who made all these interesting revelations, which history has also proved to be well founded, was one of the leaders, perhaps the main one, of the Synod, and worked in harmony with the Pope. Reading the words of the Pope about hypocrisy, I was reminded of these episodes, and the situation in which the Church lives, of suffering ambiguity from lack of a clear answer on the part of those who ought to give it: Yes, yes, No, no.

*To preserve the integrity of the original essay, we retained the link to the Italian report on the pope's homily, in the event of translation discrepancies. The English version can be read here.

[Originally published at Marcotosatti.com. Reprinted by OnePeterFive]

[1P5] 2190.20

CF News / Comment from the internet

Pius XII's prophetic warnings about Fatima and the 'suicide' of altering the Faith in its liturgy

Pius XIIANDREW GUERNSEY writes for OnePeterFive : 'In 1933, sixteen years after Our Lady's apparitions at Fatima, the future Pope Ven. Pius XII, then Cardinal Eugenio Pacelli, Secretary of State to Pope Pius XI, made prophetic remarks in confidence to his friend Count Enrico Pietro Galeazzi. Cardinal Pacelli stated that Our Lady of Fatima's confidences to Sr. Lucia were a warning against the 'suicide' of destruction of the liturgy and other dangers of altering the Faith. Pacelli made similar prophetic warnings in a subsequent conversation with a fellow curial cardinal.

While these Pacellian remarks have appeared in truncated form in various traditional Catholic publications over the years, in honor of the 100th anniversary of Fatima, the entirety of Pius XII's prophetic remarks are printed here in a fresh English translation, as they appear in Pie XII devant l'Histoire [Pius XII Before History] RRRR (1972) by Msgr. Georges Roche & Philippe Saint Germain

'Suppose, dear friend, that Communism is the most visible among the organs of subversion against the Church and the Tradition of Divine Revelation. Thus, we will witness the invasion of everything that is spiritual: philosophy, science, law, teaching, the arts, the media, literature, theater, and religion.

'I am concerned about the confidences of the Virgin to the little Lucia of Fatima. This persistence of the Good Lady in face of the danger that threatens the Church is a divine warning against the suicide that the alteration of the Faith, in its liturgy, its theology, and its soul, would represent.

'I hear around me innovators who wish to dismantle the Sacred Chapel, destroy the universal flame of the Church, reject her ornaments, and make her remorseful for her historical past. Well, my dear friend, I am convinced that the Church of Peter must affirm her past, or else she will dig her own grave.

'I will fight this battle with the greatest energy on the inside of the Church, just as outside of it, even if the forces of evil may one day take advantage of my person, my actions, or my writings, as they try today to deform the history of the Church. All human heresies which alter the word of God are so that a greater light might appear'.


'These underdeveloped peoples will save the Church, Eminence. A day will come when the civilized world will deny its God, when the Church will doubt as Peter doubted. She will be tempted to believe that man has become God, that His Son is only a symbol, a philosophy like so many others. And in churches, Christians will search for the red lamp where Jesus awaits them, like the sinful woman crying out before the empty tomb: 'Where have they taken Him?'

'Then, priests will rise up from Africa, from Asia, from America, formed here in this seminary of the Missions, who will say and who will proclaim that the 'bread of life' is not ordinary bread, that the mother of the God-man is not a mother like others. And they will be cut to pieces to testify that Christianity is not a religion like others, since her head is the Son of God, and the Church is His Church.

Cardinal Pacelli's Prophesies Coming True Today:

Cardinal Pacelli's remarks are stunning prophesies of the current state of affairs in the Church, 84 years later. We are witnessing today that:

+ Russia spreads her errors of communism and secularization throughout the world as Our Lady of Fatima warned. This happens even in the Church through doctrinal, moral, and liturgical relativism and secularization. The smoke of Satan has entered the sanctuary.

+ The imposition of Paul VI's 'New Mass' after Vatican II has brought about widespread destruction of the Church's sacred liturgy and beauty in church architecture. There is widespread grave liturgical irreverence, sometimes even causing the sacraments, including the Eucharist, to be invalid from certain priests using the new rites.

+ There is mass apostasy in the Church and her bishops - 'She will doubt as Peter doubted'.

+ She doubts exclusivity of salvation through the Catholic Church and the social kingship of Christ. This is evidenced by harmful ambiguities, compromise formulas, and omissions in the very texts of Vatican II (ex. Nostra Aetate, Lumen Gentium, and Dignitatis Humanae). RRRR She doubts that all peoples and nations must become subject to Christ's rule or ought to convert to the Catholic faith, and favors secular governments and practices. Scandalous practices of ecumenism have led to a virtual abandonment of the Divine Commission in favor of a vacuous, open-ended 'dialogue'.

+ She doubts even the universal validity of the Divine Law as seen in the double synod on the family and Pope Francis' justifications for adultery and of a false notion of conscience in Amoris Laetitia. Numerous bishops conferences are openly violating the Divine law by allowing the divorced and civilly remarried persons living more uxorio to receive Holy Communion.

+ She doubts the eternity and reality of Hell, by devoting her energies to progressive terrestrial utopias under the guise of environmentalism, one-world-government, mass immigration, and wealth redistribution, rather than to the salvation of souls.

+ The Church in Africa flourishes and holds fast to the Catholic Faith, especially on sexual ethics, while the Western Catholic Church is losing the faith and dying out.

+ Faithful Catholics suffer at the hands of fellow Catholics (white martyrdom) and non-Catholics (sometimes red martyrdom) because they refuse to give in to the prevailing moral relativism and religious syncretism.

Implications for Fatima

Cardinal Pacelli's words about Fatima are especially revealing. Pacelli states his belief that the warnings of Our Lady at Fatima are about primarily internal threats to the Church rather than external ones; namely, through the 'suicide' of the 'alteration of the Faith in its in its liturgy, its theology, and its soul'. This runs contrary to the narrative of those who argue that message of Fatima only speaks of individual conversion, and not warning of the crisis in the Church we are experiencing today since Vatican II.

As to the Third Secret and its possible unrevealed part about apostasy in the Church even touching the pope, it should be noted that Pius XII did not likely ever read Sr. Lucia's letter containing the Third Secret. According to the testimonies of Cardinal Ottaviani and Monsignor Capovilla, Secretary of Pope John XXIII, the envelope containing the secret, which arrived in Rome on April 16, 1957, was still sealed when John XXIII opened it in 1959, one year after Pius XII's death. However, having been made Secretary of State to Pius XI just twelve years after the Fatima apparitions, Pacelli was apparently informed and even gravely concerned by the yet unwritten 'confidences of the Virgin to Sister Lucia', which presumably warned of a crisis of faith in the Church.

Regarding the authenticity and reliability of Cardinal Pacelli's comments

Private comments like Cardinal Pacelli's, that are later revealed can only be rejected as inauthentic on two bases: if the comments conflict with known truth, or if the one who reveals them is untrustworthy.

On both counts, these Pacelli quotations stand up to scrutiny. They not only do not conflict with the truth, but rather, in fact, prophetically predict the state of the Church today. The credentials of Count Galeazzi, the source, and Msgr. Roche, the author of Pie XII devant l'histoire, moreover, RRRR are sound.

If the quotes were fabricated, surely Count Galeazzi (who died in 1986, 14 years after Pie XII devant l'histoire RRRR was first published) would have challenged the veracity of Msgr Roche's account, and surely Msgr. Roche wouldn't have dared to publish this account, in consultation with Galeazzi in the first place, if the passage were blatantly false, knowing that Galeazzi was alive and could easily debunk it. Both men were men of learning, reputation and proximity to the time, the events, the people, and the Pontiff Pius XII himself.

Msgr. Roche, moreover, was secretary and confidant for thirty years to the French Cardinal Eugène Tisserant (who himself was archivist and pro-prefect of the Vatican Library from 1930 to 1936), and whose archives are cited as the primary source of the book. It was reported upon Tisserant's death that he bequeathed his personal files to Msgr Roche. Tisserant himself was consecrated by Cardinal Pacelli (Pius XII) and was respected so much that he was the first person after Pope Paul VI to sign each of the acts of the Vatican II.

It should be noted that Pie XII devant l'histoire RRRR was given a scathing review by liberal laicized ex-priest Emile Poulat at the time of its publication in 'Archives des sciences sociales des religions' (1972, vol. 33, no. 33, p. 292-293). Poulat called the work as a whole 'improbable, bearing little resemblance to the truth'. He criticized the authors for poor citations, bibliographies, and various errors, 'all from the same fanciful ink'. Poulat, however, had suspect motives for criticizing the book. Poulat was a Modernist priest who renounced the priesthood following Pius XII's 1954 condemnation of the modernist worker-priest movement, of which Poulat was a member. It is more than reasonable to disregard Poulat's critiques as that of a disgruntled ex-cleric with a modernist agenda, irrelevant to the question of the veracity of these particular quotes from Pacelli, which Poulat does not even address in his critique of the book.

Msgr. Roche's Pie XII devant l'histoire RRRR is also cited by several historical biographies about the life of Pius XII, such as in Jacques Kornberg's The Pope's Dilemma, Neal Pease's Rome's Most Faithful Daughter, and Philippe Chenaux's Paul VI: Le souverain éclairé.

The skeptical critic, therefore, must prove a documentary fraud on the part of close collaborators of Pius XII (with no clear motive), involving the invention of an entire conversation that never happened, and he must show how it is that an allegedly fabricated conversation turned out to be so full of accurate prophecies.


While some may rightly point out the Pope Pius XII's controversial reforms of the Holy Week liturgy in 1955 and 1956, devised by the modernist Annibale Bugnini, began this process of the destruction of the liturgy that culminated in the New Mass, nevertheless, Cardinal Pacelli's warnings about the 'suicide' of altering the faith 'in its liturgy' are chilling warnings for our time. Indeed, we have witnessed Pacelli's warnings of an anthroprocentric Church come true through the harmful dealings of bishops and even popes in living memory and today, from Pope John XXIII and Paul VI to Pope Francis. Pacelli's image of Mary Magdalene at the tomb is a powerful one for the sufferings of faithful Catholics in our own time in watching the events warned by Our Lady of Fatima unfold: 'Christians will search for the red lamp where Jesus awaits them, like the sinful woman crying out before the empty tomb: 'Where have they taken Him?' RRRR

Cardinal Pacelli's remarks, however, have two optimistic prophesies for traditional Catholics to take courage in, of how Christ will save His Church. The first is that, 'All human heresies which alter the word of God are so that a greater light might appear'. RRRR Indeed, many have noted that the acute crisis in the Church, especially manifest in the papacy of Pope Francis, have unmasked many of the wolves in sheep's clothing among bishops, priests, and career Catholic lay commentators. The current crisis has also effectively rendered the ultamontanism of Catholic neo-conservatism untenable, at last opening up a frank discussion of the sources of the crisis in what went wrong at Vatican II and the Pauline liturgical reforms. We may hope that 'greater light' may appear for future successors of Pope Francis who will be tasked with the duty of restoring the Church from damage done not only by the papacy of Pope Francis but by Vatican II itself.

The second hopeful prophesy is that the 'underdeveloped peoples' in Africa, Asia, etc 'will save the Church'. Pacelli's prediction brings to mind recent remarks by Cardinal Robert Sarah speaking of Africa's strong stance in favor of the family at the synod on the family: 'I have a conviction: It will be Africa, and therefore the Church, who will save the family… In this deep anthropological crisis, Africa, despite her poverty, and indeed because of this poverty, which is the poverty of Christ in the Gospel, can give to the Church her most precious treasure: fidelity to God and to the Gospel, her love of life and the family'. RRRR Soon Africa and other nations who were once the mission territory of Christianity may re-evangelize the post-Christian Western world that first brought them the Faith.

To conclude, we have no reason to doubt the authenticity of the prophetic confidences of Cardinal Pacelli in 1933. Indeed, they are worthy of prayerful meditation and widest dissemination by faithful Catholics during this, the 100th Anniversary of Our Lady of Fatima, so that we too can help end the suicidal crisis that the Church is undergoing today.

[1p5] 2190.21

CF News / Comment from the internet

Is an Apostolic Commissar ready to destroy the next 'too pious' Order?

THE EPONYMOUS FLOWER writes : 'Has Pope Francis already assigned an apostolic commissioner for the next, 'too pious' order?

The fate of the Franciscans of the Immaculate could soon befall the Heralds of the Gospel (Evangelii Praecones, EP). This lay community was founded as a youth movement by the Third Order Carmelite João Scognamiglio Clá Dias in Brazil. The inspiration for the name came from the encyclical Evangelii Praecones, which Pope Pius XII. published in1951 about mission.

João Scognamiglio Clá Dias, born in 1939, son of a Spaniard and an Italian, was a member of the Marian Congregation in Sao Paulo and in 1956 a member of the Third Order of Carmelites. He studied law and did his military service in the Airborne Ranger. Subsequently, he turned to the study of philosophy, theology and the right of the Church. At the university, he became a leader of the Catholic student body, which opposed the 1968 student protests.

The real development of the Heralds of the Gospel began at the same time in the 1960s, when João Scognamiglio Clá Días, Pedro Paulo de Figueiredo and Carlos Alberto Soares Corrêa gathered a group of young Catholics in Sao Paulo to pray in silence, deepen their spiritual life, and to discuss current questions in the Church and in the world. The goal was missioning and evangelization.

In the seventies the desire for a common life arose. The founder and two companions retired to a former Benedictine abbey to deepen their spiritual life in silence and prayer. Of the first companions, no one left, but new ones were added. They first arranged a Marian consecration, began to pray liturgy of the hours together and finally gave themselves a first rule. This resulted in the development of a community life for men and, in 1996, of women. The foundation stone was laid for a flowering male branch, the Societas Clericalis Vitae Apostolicae Iuris Pontificii Virgo Flos Carmeli, and a female feminine branch, Societas Vitae Apostolicae Iuris Pontificii Regina Virginum.

The Heralds of the Gospel were recognized in 2001 by Pope John Paul II as an International Private Association of Believers. They are thus the first ecclesial community to receive this recognition in the third millennium. The two societies of Apostolic Life were consecrated in 2009 by Pope Benedict XVI. canonically established with papal law.

The laity movement also led to the vocation of the priesthood. In 2005, the first priests were consecrated, including the founder of the Heralds himself at the age of 64 .

The Community is now active in about 80 countries, and only 12 years after the first consecration, has already 120 priests and about 20 deacons. The two societies of consecrated life have, after 20 years, more than 4,000 members, two thirds of whom are men, one third of women. Heralds of the Gospel are around 40,000 worldwide. Anyone who reads the figures of the past ten years sees the massive growth of the movement, which was begun under the pontificate of Benedict XVI. João Scognamiglio Clá Días is Superior General of the Heralds and the Society of Consecrated Life. Since 2008 he has also been an honorary fellow at the patriarchal basilica Santa Maria Maggiore in Rome.

According to 'an intimate, internal source', says Tosatti, a 'task force' from the Congregation of Religious, headed by the Brazilian Cardinal João Braz de Aviz and the Spanish Franciscan José Rodriguez Carballo, was being assembled to investigate the Heralds. The group is to consist of a bishop, a religious and a church lawyer'.Nothing is known about the reasons for this initiative,' says Tosatti, which recalls the Franciscans of Immaculata. Even after four years of the provisional administration, the Vatican has not yet given any reason for the drastic intervention of this traditional order, which had been flourishing until 2013.

It is obvious, according to Tosatti, that the founder of the Heralds of the Gospel, João Scognamiglio Clá Dias, was in touch with Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira to make him 'suspicious'. Corrêa de Oliveira, who died in 1995, was a mastermind and leader of the Catholic tradition in Brazil. Clá Dias worked for many years in the Brazilian Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Private Property (TFP) founded by Corrêa de Oliveira. On Corrêa de Oliveira's initiative, the Knights of the Gospel emerged, which Clá Dias led after his death, but led away from the social-political struggle and intensified religious life. This is a development expressed by the founding of the Societies of Consecrated Life and its own priestly members. Nevertheless, he calls Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira the 'prophet of our time'.

The community consists primarily of young people who are distinguished by their discipline. The members of consecrated life do not make vows, but commit themselves to celibacy and devote themselves entirely to the apostolate. They live in houses separated by sex. Their daily routine alternates between Liturgy (Holy Mass, Liturgy of Hours), Prayer (Rosary), study and especially evangelization. To this end they are called in dioceses and parishes, they are missionaries in the streets and go to prisons. The emphasis is on youth work. The religious dress, which is modeled on medieval heralds, is striking. It is equal for men and women, and represents the most visible continuity between the Knights of Corrêa de Oliveiras and the Heralds of Clá Dias.

The two societies of consecrated life are active in the field of art, culture and youth education, which is due to the fact that the founder Clá Dias sees a particularly suitable means of evangelization in music. In addition to activities in schools and universities, they are concerned with communities of elderly care, and they are mainly active in marginal areas, which is also to be understood geographically, for example, in the case of Feuerland.

'It is unclear for what reason this apostolic visitation will take place,' says Tosatti. Cardinal Prefect Braz de Aviz had recently indicated that it was 'appropriate' to raise a watchful eye on this 'new ecclesial reality'. Why? Because founders sometimes turn out to be 'unsuitable,' the Cardinal says, 'to deal with the many vocations. In the case of the Franciscans of the Immaculate Heart, the Congregation of Religious, with the approval of Pope Francis, radically intervened, dismissed the whole order's leadership, and appointed Commissioners without mentioning any reason. The decision of the Order, founded in 1990, to return from the Novus Ordo to the traditional form of the Roman Rite in 2008, was the bone of contention.

After the Congregation of Religious failed to lay hands on the real estate of the Order with the help of the secular jurisdiction, the pressure on Father Stefano Maria Manelli, who had been deposed and held under house arrest, was recently increased to induce the lay associations to surrender the assets. At the same time, the Congregation of Religious does not shrink from threatening canonical sanctions against the implacable former Superior General, now 84 years old.

The Franciscans of Immaculata have been under the tutelage of the Papal Commissioner for four years. The Commissioner has just recently finished with the Institute of the Word of Flesh (IVE), an Order founded in 1984 in Argentina, which also attracts numerous vocations. Currently, the order includes around 800 priests, 2,000 religious women and more than 700 seminarians. It operates on all five continents, including the ballyhooed geographical and Catholic 'periphery' such as Tajikistan, Papua New Guinea, Iceland, Palestine, Russia, Tunisia, Ukraine, Albania, Taiwan and Egypt. The order is divided into ten provinces, one vice-province and three delegations. In the Federal Republic of Germany, there has been a center of faith in the Archdiocese of Berlin since 2010, and since 2016, a branch with support of the pilgrimage church on the Mariahilfberg near Neumarkt in the Upper Palatinate (Diocese of Eichstätt). The branch of the Order of the Virgin Mary, Door of the Sunrise, which includes parts of Central and Northern Europe, also has branches in Luxembourg and the Netherlands.

The Heralds of the Gospel do not yet have branches in the German-speaking world.

Tosatti's summary:

'Apart from more or less real problems and more or less justified accusations against the founders, these communities have three essential similarities: they are committed to the tradition of the Church (therefore, the more Thomas than Rahner supporters, are characterized by a strong worship of Our Lady of Fatima and are active in the right to life of unborn children), many vocations (which are more suspicious nowadays in church hierarchies and bishops) and have considerable financial resources'.

[EF] 2190.22

CF News / Comment from the internet

Rahner the Restorationist ~ Karl Rahner's time has passed

Karl RahnerR.R. RENO writes for First Things : 'Karl Rahner was once the figure to be reckoned with. When, at the very outset of the Second Vatican Council, the gathered bishops rejected the schema on revelation prepared in advance by the Holy Office, they signaled the end of the presumptive authority of neoscholastic theology over the intellectual life of the Catholic Church. Ferment and experimentation followed, and for more than a decade all questions seemed open and every inherited assumption vulnerable. It was during those years that Rahner (though in his sixties) emerged as the most influential of the 'new theologians,' especially in the English-speaking world, where the great majority of Catholic theologians used his work to formulate their own theologies.

That time has passed. Beginning in the late 1980s-Rahner died in 1984, at the age of eighty-Hans Urs von Balthasar's influence began to ascend and St. Thomas reemerged. Nevertheless, Rahner, or at least the Rahnerian style, continues to shape the Catholic academic scene in America, providing the theological justifications for nearly all forms of contextual, feminist, and liberationist theologies, as well as for nearly all revisionist moral theologies. That's not because he was a radical, though aspects of his theology are innovative and, by the standards of his day, bold and provocative, and not a few Rahnerians adopt radical ideas. Instead, his theology was and remains influential because it promises to restore rather than revolutionize Catholic theology. Rahner was an essentially conservative figure. He reassured rather than challenged the mentality of the pre-conciliar Church.

He became so influential in part because he had students, which was not true of Balthasar, who never had a teaching post, or Henri de Lubac, who didn't teach systematic theology and was barred from teaching for nearly a decade, or Joseph Ratzinger, who became a bishop in the earlier stages of his career as a professor. It's important not to underestimate this factor. Professors who teach and mentor students always have the most influence over academic culture.

He was also so influential because, a classically trained German academic, he was extremely productive. Editor of a number of editions of Denzinger, a compendium of snippets from official Church doctrines that once served as the definitive collection of proof texts for theologians, he also served on the editorial boards of journals and launched multivolume dictionaries of theology and other mainstays of academic research. His justly famous theological essays (published in many volumes) provide magisterial summaries of the scholarly literature.

Far more important for his remarkable influence after Vatican II, however, was the conservative structure and 'feel' of his theology. Of all the 'new theologians' who rejected neo-scholasticism, his style was the most conventional. It preserved the intellectual gestalt or form of neo-scholasticism.

For example, in the modern era, Catholic theology had developed distinct specializations: ecclesiology, moral theology, systematic theology, historical theology, liturgical theology, biblical studies, and so forth. Rahner did nothing to challenge this system of specialization. In his academic work, he addressed a broad range of topics, and he published many of his homilies and spiritual talks, but in every instance he was clear to issue disclaimers about his competence, always insisting that he could only speak tentatively about matters outside of his professional expertise as a systematic theologian. A professor or graduate student could retool as a Rahnerian without leaving his comfort zone as a systematic theologian. In that sense, Rahner reinforced rather than revolutionized. He reassured the academic guild.

This academic conventionality stands in marked contrast to the transgressive style of Hans Urs von Balthasar. Balthasar thought nothing of immersing himself in biblical scholarship for a period of time and then writing with a confident directness and scriptural immediacy about the passion of Christ, which he did for his contribution to Mysterium Salutis, a multi-volume handbook of dogmatic theology put together by Rahner and others to displace neo-scholastic handbooks. Balthasar subsequently published this material as the extraordinary and un-categorizable book Mysterium Pascale.

Rahner was also conventional in the way he argued. He made his own famous contribution to Mysterium Salutis. It was a bold and fundamental rejection of the main lines of earlier doctrines of God and theologies of the Trinity, making him seem a revolutionary thinker. But his mode of argument was conventional, and slots easily into modern Catholic scholarly treatments of the Trinity. He can be taught alongside earlier scholastic theologians, and students will have little difficulty seeing how he modified and overturned inherited theological assumptions and conclusions. Yes, he challenged the substance of neo-scholasticism, but not its habits of mind.

Rahner also used philosophy in a way that challenged the substance but reinforced the basic form of earlier approaches. During the modern era, the natural sciences, sociology, and philosophy began to organize our perceptions of reality without recourse to revelation. The upshot was often a worldview under the mastery of concepts uncongenial to theological reflection. To remedy this, the modern Catholic tradition emphasized an explicitly pre-theological mode of philosophical analysis and formation. Settling philosophical questions was thought to be an essential first step toward having a robust and effective theological culture. We need to develop the correct philosophy in order for our faith to have traction in life.

In his introductory course in theology, published in English as Foundations of Christian Faith, Rahner promises to 'try as far as possible to situate Christianity within the intellectual horizon of people today'. For the neoscholasticism Rahner rejected, situating Christianity on the intellectual horizon of people today required doing battle with modern philosophy in order to secure crucial metaphysical claims. Rahner's approach is quite different. He adopts and modifies rather than challenges and refutes modern philosophy. That marks an important substantive change, which most scholars and historians of theology see as decisive. But we need to keep our eyes on the role he assigns to philosophy. Rahner agrees that we need to nail down certain philosophical claims in order to gain a workable 'idea' of Christianity. Philosophical clarification and formation come before theology. That's very traditional.

Because Rahner reinforced neoscholastic habits of mind, he was an innovator congenial to the Catholic academic culture of his day. But he was much more than congenial. He was in many ways the ultimate establishment theologian, and in his heyday his influence was profound and pervasive. That's because his theology promised to vindicate the mid-twentieth-century hopes of the Church's leaders: that the Church might join with people of goodwill to address the pressing moral and social questions of our time, that the faithful might see their life of discipleship as an integral human vocation, and that our broken world might awaken to the healing, humanizing power of the gospel. These hopes are most clearly expressed in Gaudium et Spes, which, sociologically speaking, was the most conservative document of the Second Vatican Council.

Each dimension of this profound expression of Christian solidarity with the world is fitting, because based in truth. Christ is the Alpha and Omega; by him and in him are all things made. But the atmosphere of Gaudium et Spes is one of nostalgia for Christendom, reflecting as it does an earnest desire to find a path toward reintegrating the distinctive imperatives of the gospel to which the Church must remain loyal with the increasingly self-confident and independent secular West. It's this nostalgia, a nostalgia that longs to repair and restore the Church's central role in the West, that makes Gaudium et Spes conservative.

Rahner's theology can be best understood as reflecting this mid-twentieth-century restorationist desire for a new, modern-friendly integralism, the technical term for social conditions that allow Christian institutions to work harmoniously with secular ones, and to do so with a widely recognized spiritual and moral authority. Two major features of his theology, both central to his theological project, allow him to satisfy this desire. In one form or another, they make Rahnerians Rahnerian. He argues for a philosophy built on the supposition that all human subjectivity is based on a 'pre-apprehension of being' that can be understood as a transcendental (not categorical) experience of God. In order to give this transcendental experience a Christian valence, he argues for an account of nature and grace that introduces a 'pre-apprehension of the Incarnation,' as it were.

First, then, the notion of a 'pre-apprehension of being'. Our consciousness has, as he puts it, 'an openness for absolutely everything, for being as such'. We can't, of course, translate this openness into actual knowledge. As finite beings, we can't take in 'absolutely everything'. Therefore, this consciousness is transcendental, which means that we have an underlying consciousness or disposition toward something always more, something always greater, which is of course God.

This can seem like a version of one of the five ways of St. Thomas, but it's not. The traditional arguments for the existence of God make a case for the proposition that God exists. Rahner's argument is different. His line of reasoning leads to the conclusion that every actual experience is underlined by a transcendental experience, which is, as he puts it, 'the subjective, unthematic, necessary and unfailing consciousness of the knowing subject that is co-present in every spiritual act of knowledge'. From there, he argues that everybody always already experiences the infinite horizon of being, which he elsewhere calls 'holy mystery' or God.

The 'always already' shows the genius of Rahner's transcendental method. He is not arguing that God exists. He's instead arguing that every authentic act of human subjectivity has beneath it a pre-apprehension or consciousness of God, something that's true even if a person denies the proposition that God exists. This allows him to slide toward the assumption that an inevitable God-consciousness, a hidden affinity and openness to theology, lies beneath or hidden within the cultural and moral discourses of the post-Christian secular West. The new integralism sought by Gaudium et Spes is, in a sense, always already present and achieved. Transcendental experience ensures a perpetual partnership between theology and human subjectivity as such.

That's the first major feature. The second is what I've called the pre-apprehension of the Incarnation. Though we have this God-consciousness, the Church proclaims Christ, not God. The nostalgia at Vatican II was for a Christian integralism, not a theistic one. So Rahner needs to do more than argue for transcendental experience. He needs to show that our transcendental experience is somehow intrinsically Christ-oriented. To use the technical terminology of Catholic scholasticism: He needs to argue that there is a universal supernatural mode of transcendental experience rather than merely a natural one.

This he does. In 1950, Pius XII issued the encyclical Humani Generis condemning various trends in theology, the most important of which were efforts to provide a theological foundation for reintegrating distinctively Christian and Catholic beliefs and modes of life with the broad sweep of human reality. This debate was carried out in terms of the relation of nature (what pertains to our humanity as such) and the supernatural or grace (that which is possible only in and through our fellowship with Christ).

Put crudely, there are two trajectories in this debate. One goes in the direction of intrinsicism. In this view, grace fulfills and completes natural tendencies already at work within the human person. Christ tops us off, as it were. Those who sought a broadly affirmative approach to human experience and culture adopted this approach, because it supposes that to a great degree our natural tendencies are heading in the right direction. The other trajectory leads to extrinsicism. In this view, the supernatural or grace is an unexpected and new possibility, one in decisive ways discontinuous with our natural tendencies. Christ does something unique and unexpected for and in us. Those seeking to buttress the authority of the Church tended toward this position, because the Church's teaching and sacraments make available to us a grace we're not able to anticipate-and therefore are in no position to critique as not properly fitted to our expectations and needs.

In an important technical article, 'Concerning the Relationship between Nature and Grace,' published in the midst of the heated debates that precipitated Humani Generis and its condemnations, Rahner makes an argument that seems to split the difference but in fact provides a formally traditional basis for the intrinsicist trajectory, the culture-friendly option. He argues that there must be a distinction between nature and grace. If Christ tops us off, then as creator God owes to us the completion of what he began, which of course can't be right, because God does not owe us grace. Therefore, he takes it as a necessary presupposition that grace and our supernatural life in Christ must be genuinely 'above' our natural, created capacities. But God doesn't want to hit us over the head with something entirely new and alien; grace cannot be 'extrinsic'.

Therefore, Rahner hypothesizes, from the very outset God gives us an intrinsic, anticipatory grace that establishes in us something that can be drawn out and completed in Christ. This something is not 'natural' in the strict sense, and as such it can't be a capacity or potency. Given by grace, it must be 'supernatural'. Drawing on technical distinctions in Heidegger that allow him to talk about defining features of life that are not part of our natures, he designates this grace our 'supernatural existential,' a transcendental quality of human experience that points our natural capacities in a supernatural direction.

With the concept of a 'supernatural existential' in hand, Rahner can put Christ into transcendental experience. It's not the case that everybody already knows Christ any more than it's the case that everybody already believes in God. But the argument here (as before) is not about what we believe; it's about the origin, shape, and tendency of our consciousness as such. The concept of the supernatural existential allows Rahner to suppose that all human experience and culture has been divinely influenced to anticipate Christ, not in the negative mode of rejection (which is the dominant biblical mode) but rather in a positive mode of welcoming him. Christ is what we're always already stammering as we try to answer the question of our humanity. We need but recognize and make explicit what is already present, which is the transcendental experience that whispers Christ, however haltingly. Thus does Rahner vindicate the new integralism hoped for in Gaudium et Spes.

Both major features-transcendental experience and the supernatural existential-served the conservative, restorationist hopes of the mid-twentieth-century Catholic Church. She had become demoralized by the inability of neoscholasticism to successfully reintegrate European culture around the leadership of the Church. Scholarly books written at that time and later, after Rahner and others succeeded in supplanting neoscholasticism, itemize the problems: an inability to deal with 'history,' a 'fortress mentality,' a metaphysical system with no room for 'experience,' an ineffective moral theology, and more. Formulated by protagonists in the theological struggles of mid-century Catholicism and uncritically repeated by many in recent decades, these descriptions are often inaccurate and tendentious. A satisfactory history of twentieth-century Catholicism has yet to be written.

But the very real feelings of failure and disconnection cannot be gainsaid. Many Catholic intellectuals suspected that what the Church was talking about wasn't what really matters. Many bishops of that era feared that, if forced to choose, the faithful would obey the various magisteria of secular culture rather than the apostolic authority of the Church. In that context, Rahner's theology was a godsend. He allowed for theologians to argue that the felt imperatives of the human heart-religious and secular, Christian or otherwise-are in harmony. We need not choose, but instead must work to discern and nurture the Christ-desiring dimensions that are necessarily part of every human experience.

More than two decades ago Augustine DiNoia wrote an account of Karl Rahner for a survey of twentieth-century theology, The Modern Theologians. He noted that an unfortunate Rahnerian 'orthodoxy' had taken root, but nonetheless expressed optimism'.The deeply traditional and scholastic character of Rahner's thought, and the recognition that he cannot be properly assessed apart from the achievements of classical theology, will presumably encourage a more balanced appropriation of his theology'. I was once persuaded by this prophecy. The hours I spent reading Rahner taught me what academic theology is for, which is to exposit and clarify the logic of revelation, drawing out its implications and meeting objections. I even wrote a book defending Rahner's account of nature and grace.

Looking back now, however, an objective observer must conclude that Rahner had an almost entirely negative influence on Catholic theology after Vatican II. First, Rahner is the great figure after the council who, because he was committed to sustaining disciplinary boundaries, was most likely to keep the Bible in a hermetically sealed box to be opened only by biblical scholars under controlled conditions. In other words, he inadvertently made theology less biblical, exacerbating rather than remedying a significant defect in the neoscholastic tradition. Second, his transcendental philosophy obscures the Christian claim to truth, encouraging a debilitating theological relativism. And third, his great desire to find Christ everywhere ends up obscuring the role of Christ at the center of Christian life, thought, and practice.

When it comes to Scripture, the difference between Rahner and Ratzinger could not be more dramatic, and with telling results. Where Rahner seeks to establish the cogency of the 'idea of Christianity' with transcendental arguments, Ratzinger focuses on expositing the intrinsic form of the Christian mystery, especially in its biblical and liturgical expressions. He has surely been right to do so. Modern science and philosophy challenge Christian claims about reality, the soul, and God. But as a cultural reality, modernity challenges in a different way: It claims our loyalty. Most people are not intellectuals, including the intellectuals. What we need is ballast, not arguments. We need a rich sense of the inner coherence and beauty of what we believe rather than an 'idea' with which to manage our relations to modern culture.

Our theologies must be more direct and more scriptural. We need to allow ourselves to be described as academically naive, not in the sense of being unsophisticated or unaware of scholarly standards, but rather because our work must find its source-including its concepts, idioms, and rhetoric-in the Church, not contemporary intellectual culture, which falsely claims to provide the most fitting concepts, terms, and methods for a life devoted to truth. Although it was not his intention, with his use of transcendental categories Rahner drained theology of density and solidity.

Rahner also undermined Catholic theology's capacity to speak with clarity about truth. His approach has encouraged many to translate the theological doctrine of God's transcendence into an epistemological doctrine of God's unknowability. The consequences have been dire and too multifaceted to itemize here. They can be summarized as a tendency toward theological relativism, especially among those who get their Rahner secondhand. Today, a great deal of Catholic theology will admit of no material criteria for theological truth. What we have instead are formal criteria such as 'experience' and 'dialogue,' both of which are qualities of consciousness, or ways to 'raise consciousness'. We also have theologies organized to serve reciprocity, solidarity, or social justice, which are again features of consciousness and culture rather than truths affirmed and known. This follows directly from Rahner's approach, which makes features of consciousness ('pre-apprehension of being') central.

Catholic theology needs to change the subject back to propositions that can be true or false. This means a return to metaphysics in philosophy and dogma in theology. Such a return need not exclude Rahner's transcendental analysis. His 'idea of Christianity' can be a useful thought experiment that provides orientation in modern intellectual culture. Moreover, a renewed dogmatic theology can draw on Rahner's often brilliant expositions of doctrine.

But first and foremost, we need to speak about the truth: the truth about reality, about the soul, and about God. These are the truths that modernity challenges, demanding from us answers. We've got to know what we believe and why before we can meet that challenge and give our answers. This return to truth from the misty realm of 'meaning' will make theology intellectually more relevant, not less so, for metaphysical realism and authoritative dogma must be reckoned with, even if only to be refuted and denied. This is not the case for 'experience' and 'dialogue,' which is why so much of contemporary Catholic theology influenced by Rahner is so marginal in academic culture.

The failures of Rahner's theology stem from the fact that his conservative efforts to restore Christian integralism were theoretical rather than real, as I suspect they had to be, given that Europe was moving in a post-Christian direction. To my mind, this is what made his theology particularly destructive. In order to conjure harmonies, he adopts the transcendental method, a muddy mediating voice that is neither empirical, nor metaphysical, nor dogmatic, nor scriptural.

This becomes particularly debilitating when he takes up the central Christian affirmation of Jesus of Nazareth as the Incarnate Word of God. With the transcendental method, Rahner can make a formal affirmation of the particularity of Christ, but his approach tends to dissolve Christ into an idea or concept that our consciousness anticipates.

The consequences are significant, as Bruce Marshall has demonstrated with devastating clarity in Christology in Conflict, a comparison of the 'identity of a savior' in Rahner and Karl Barth published in the late eighties. Marshall asks which has logical priority for one's faith: the particular person Jesus Christ, as Barth claimed, or a general religious anthropology allied with the idea of an absolute savior, as Rahner argued. If we answer this question in favor of the particular person of Jesus, then our destiny turns on his presence in Word and sacrament as passed down and guarded by the authority of the Church, and our theology flows from these sources. If we opt for the idea, then what matters most is theological anthropology and method.

Those options define many issues facing Catholic theology today, and we need to side with Barth. For example, questions of authority in theology are rooted in questions about the nature of our salvation in Christ. Rahner's theology has not encouraged a theological culture enthusiastic about ecclesial loyalty. We need to show the deep christological need for a theological loyalty to the Church and the magisterium.

An integral role for Scripture in theology, the importance of robust claims about truth, clear affirmations of the first-century Jew, Jesus of Nazareth, as the fount of all truth-these are important for a healthy theological culture. But faith is more than theology, and the Church more than her theologians. On this point, Rahner's influence has been perhaps the most harmful. His efforts to theorize a new integralism flattered and perpetuated the mid-twentieth-century illusion that we don't face hard choices.

Balthasar criticized Rahner soon after the council for reducing the moment of decision for Christ to affirmations of 'a bland and shallow humanism'. Balthasar saw a pattern in salvation history that heightens rather than relaxes the contrasts between Church and world. In that sense, he was far less conservative than Rahner and the mainstream mid-century Catholic consensus Rahner represented, which was so eager to return to earlier harmonies. Balthasar was also far truer to the way the Bible sees faith in relation to the world, and far more prescient about how the Church's post-conciliar experience of secular modernity would unfold.

Balthasar's criticism came home to me a decade ago, when I taught Rahner's Foundations. Most of my students were pre-med science majors. They were naturally interested in Rahner's attempt to reconcile faith in Christ with the Darwinian theory of evolution. After all, we face a hard question: Is what modern science teaches about the origins and destiny of our lives true, or is what the Church teaches true? Or can they be harmonized? To draw on the title of Balthasar's book criticizing Rahner, Cordula oder der Ernstfall (The Moment of Christian Witness in an English translation), it is an Ernstfall, a moment of existential emergency. Secular modernity makes claims about truth without regard to our faith, and we feel naked before these challenges.

When we had a class discussion of the material, I was taken aback. The students expressed an almost bitter disappointment. Rahner, they said, discusses neither evolution directly nor Christ, but instead a nonscientific 'idea' of evolution and a concept of an absolute savior developed at many removes from traditional christological terms. For my students, his analysis is neither convincingly scientific nor clearly rooted in the Church's own language of faith. With his transcendental formulations and mediating voice, Rahner does not answer the hard questions. Instead, he changes the subject. That's tempting. We all like to change the subject when we face hard questions. But it's futile, and not just futile but destructive when it becomes the main method for theologians, who should be providing intellectual leadership for the Church.

A final word. I have a great deal of sympathy for Rahner and the Rahnerian project. I too sigh with a desire for a new integralism. I would like to see my faith working in harmony with the best aspects of modern secular culture. I want to achieve an affirmative stance toward religious and cultural pluralism. As a participant in contemporary life, I find myself rooting for the success of Gaudium et Spes, for I want to see myself at the center rather than the periphery, as taking full possession of the best of modernity while still remaining loyal to Christ. Christ or culture? I too want to avoid hard choices, as did so many Catholic leaders after World War II, a time when Christianity and the Church seemed relevant again and something of the old days could be restored, admittedly on new terms.

But it's not 1965 anymore. Then, the Catholic Church was led by men born in the nineteenth century, most of whom had difficulty even imagining Christianity on the margins of Western culture. They wanted an updated integralism, and that's what Rahner's theology promised. He was alluring because his transcendental method and its muddy middle voice seemed to make hard choices unnecessary. Now it's become painfully apparent that in many spheres of life we must choose between the authority of Christ and the many and various worldly powers that define what counts as healthy, normal, and fulfilling.

We must let go of our restorationist dreams of integralism and face the emergency situation of the Church in the West. To a certain degree, Rahner's successors have done so. There is very little nostalgia for integralism left in the Jesuit theologian Roger Haight. He now argues with clarity that a great deal of what the Church has taught through the ages must be relativized, if not rejected outright. He has made his choice: solidarity with our experience of modernity. Which means, essentially, against Catholic theology.

The future of Catholic theology rests in the opposite choice: solidarity with the apostolic tradition as vouchsafed to us by the Church. We need not renounce the intellectual, artistic, and cultural achievements of the past, which are great and enduring. In those achievements, we can see the fundamental truth of Gaudium et Spes: Christ is the seminal force in all that is true and noble in human history, and in him all things are brought to their completion. But ours is a Christ-forgetful age, and the Church's patrimony is losing its cultural currency. The truths we know to be true are no longer buttressed as they once were by philosophers, poets, artists, and composers.

Thus the Ernstfall, the emergency situation. At times, not even the faithful can provide supports for their own affirmations of the truth of Christ. Our minds are formed in large part by the secular academy, which makes the authority of our reason unreliable. Our artistic culture is deformed, and so the authority of our taste is suspect. Most of us can't count on the authority of our experience, not even the deliverances of our consciences, which in all likelihood are malformed. Without these reliable supports, our faith is naked and vulnerable, unable to weave a handsome garment of philosophy and culture around itself, at least not in a reliable, convincing way for a wide variety of believers.

'Who do you say that I am?' Theology has something to say in every age if it gives a clear and direct answer to Jesus' question. This we must do, and because our tradition is deep, rich, and living, we can do so with philosophical, historical, and cultural sophistication. But we must have courage to endure the world's reaction-and to endure our own interior poverty as children of our world. Our secular, critical age cannot help but regard a metaphysically ambitious and dogmatically confident theology as barbaric in its direct claims to truth. Let us affirm this primitive power rather than change the subject, as does Rahner's theology.

For therein lies our strength. The density and solidity of the Church's witness is her most potent force: morally, intellectually, and spiritually. This is especially true in our postmodern era, which suffers from a cultural osteoporosis, a weakening brought on by a steady diet of critique. The era of integralism is over. Theology after Rahner needs to take up Samson's jawbone.

[R. R. Reno is editor of First Things].

[First Things] 2190.23

CF News / Comment from the internet

Whether sweet or sour, sentimentality is a swamp

FR. DWIGHT LONGENECKER writes for the National Catholic Register : 'A friend commented about the same-sex controversy, saying that he has family members who are gay and they are furious with the Catholic Church, saying, 'Who are they to define marriage?'

In discussing the problem we observed that most Americans are now so swamped by subjective sentimentalism that they cannot conceive of someone having moral values that are given by an outside source of authority.

There are two different manifestations of this subjective sentimentalism, but first I ought to explain what I mean. Subjectivism is having one's thoughts, moral decisions and relationships determined solely by their effect on oneself. I become the judge of all things because there is no other agreed, external authority.

Sentimentalism is that frame of mind which is determined not by thought or logic or any kind of reasoning at all, but purely by emotion and personal feelings. These feelings can be warm and fuzzy or they can be harsh and angry, but both are still expressions of sentimentalism.

Sentimentalism and subjectivism are both caused by not having an agreed external authority and by an underlying relativism. If relativism is true, then there is not only no agreed external authority, but there is also no such thing as truth, and of course, if there is no such thing as truth, then there can be no such thing as logic or reasoning in any way. If there is no logic or reasoning, then one is left only with one's emotions as ways of making decisions and judgements.

Americans are now so caught up in subjective sentimentalism that they can't think straight - because there is nothing left to think about.

They can't obey or disobey, because there is no authority or authoritative code to obey or disobey.

All they can do is make up their own course of action and respond irrationally according to their emotions.

But of course, without any logic or reasoning, and only going on one's emotions, one doesn't quite know how to decide on difficult questions. Therefore one is very open to suggestion, propaganda, emotional appeals and radical emotive reactions.

What we have now, therefore, is a nation of adolescents. This is what adolescents do. They have broken away enough from the authority figures to go into a kind of subjective, sentimental rebellious reaction. Thrown about by their highly fluctuating emotions and being vulnerable to peer pressure and crowd control tactics, they are headstrong, irrational teenagers having a little fit on the one hand or falling head over heels in silly, gushy emotional reactions on the other.

This subjective sentimentality can surface in a sweet way or a sour way

The sweet way seems to be all goodness and happiness, light and peace. It is full of 'Awwww!' emotions just being kind and good and nice and tolerant to everyone.

The second way it surfaces is sour. Someone disagrees with the subjective sentimentalist and they condemn them. They scapegoat them. They hand them over and hang them out to dry. This sour subjective sentimentalism can be expressed by conservatives who have made their conservative moral choices without any agreed authority or by liberals who do the same. Both condemn the other side, blame the other side and hate the other side because both kinds can only respond with raw emotion - never with a sound argument, reason or logic.

Therefore, in the present debate over same-sex marriage Americans simply cannot comprehend that Catholics operate according to a different set of systems. We believe that same-sex activities and same-sex marriage are wrong, not primarily because we think such things are 'yucky' and not because we 'hate gays' or because we want to tell them they are all going to hell.

We believe these things are wrong for clear and articulate reasons.

We believe they are wrong for reasons that we can explain and outline clearly. Furthermore, we can believe they are wrong while still accepting gay people, not judging them and allowing them into our lives. We can believe they are wrong while also acknowledging that gay people have many gifts, are capable of great human achievement, human love and many other good things.

The subjective sentimentalist cannot work this out and will not believe it is possible.

He thinks we're are pulling a fast one. He thinks we're lying because to disapprove of an action or lifestyle, for him, is to disapprove of the person and to condemn them.

The underlying problem and impasse is one, therefore, which has its roots in an essential philosophical problem, and it's the problem that is as old as Pontius Pilate who asked, 'What is Truth?'

The answer was not a theory or a philosophical proposition, but a person. The person standing in front of him.

[NCRegister] 2190.24

CF News / Comment from the internet

Jesuit scholar: Seeking to defend Islam at all costs is betraying the truth

In an interview with the National Catholic Register, Egyptian Greek Melkite Jesuit Father Henri Boulad explains why he believes Islamist terrorists are applying what their religion teaches them, and why the Church fails to address this because she has fallen prey to a leftist ideology that is destroying the West.

EDWARD PENTIN writes : 'The Church should not defend Islam “at all costs” and seek to “exonerate it from the horrors committed every day in its name” or else “one ends up betraying the truth,” a leading Jesuit scholar of Islam has asserted.

Greek Melkite Jesuit Father Henri Boulad believes that when it comes to dealing with Islam, the Catholic Church has succumbed to a “liberal left ideology which is destroying the West” based on the pretext of “openness, tolerance and Christian charity.”

In a June 10 interview with the Register, Father Boulad reveals that he shared these sentiments with Pope Francis in a letter he wrote to him last August, telling him that many think the Pope’s own views on Islam are “aligned with this ideology, and that, from complacency, you go from concessions to concessions, and compromises in compromises, at the expense of the truth.”
“Christians,” he wrote, “are expecting something from you other than vague and harmless declarations that may obscure reality.”

Some said the Pope took a diplomatic yet slightly firmer line on Islam when he gave an address to Al Azhar university in Cairo at the end of April.

Father Boulad, 85, an Egyptian and a relative of the Jesuit scholar of Islam, Father Samir Khalil Samir, also discusses in this interview why he believes Islamists are merely carrying out what their religion teaches, whether Islam is capable of reform, and how, despite its problems, the religion can help the Church in acting as a bulwark against secularist ideology.

Father Boulad, what evidence is there to show that Islam is inherently violent?

Here are clear statements of the Koran itself :

'Kill the unbelievers wherever you find them'. Koran 2:191

'Make war on the infidels living in your neighbourhood'. Koran 9:123

'When opportunity arises, kill the infidels wherever you catch them'. Koran 9:5

'Any religion other than Islam is not acceptable'. Koran 3:85

'The Jews and the Christians are perverts; fight them'.... Koran 9:30

'Maim and crucify the infidels if they criticize Islam' Koran 5:33

'Punish the unbelievers with garments of fire, hooked iron rods, boiling water; melt their skin and bellies'. Koran 22:19

'The unbelievers are stupid; urge the Muslims to fight them'. Koran 8:65

'Muslims must not take the infidels as friends'. Koran 3:28

'Terrorize and behead those who believe in scriptures other than the Qur'an'. Koran 8:12

'Muslims must muster all weapons to terrorize the infidels'. Koran 8:60

Added to these are a few samples of Muhammad’s teachings and life. Here are some quotations taken from Muslim sources:

- 'I have been commanded to fight against people till they testify that there is no god but Allah, and that Muhammad is the messenger of Allah' - (Muslim 1:33)

- 'Fight everyone in the way of Allah and kill those who disbelieve in Allah'. (Ibn Ishaq 992).

Muhammad’s life was a succession of warfare, plundering and killings… and every Muslim is invited to imitate this supreme “model”.

- Muhammad owned and traded slaves - (Sahih Muslim 3901), and ordered his followers to stone women for adultery. - (Muslim 4206)

- He himself beheaded 800 Jewish men and boys, (Abu Dawud 4390) ordered the murder of women (Ibn Ishaq 819, 995) and killed those who insulted him. - (Bukhari 56:369, 4:241)

- According to him, Jihad in the way of Allah elevates one's position in Paradise by a hundred fold. - (Muslim 4645)

- In his last ten years, he ordered 65 military campaigns and raids. - (Ibn Ishaq) and killed captives taken in battle. - (Ibn Ishaq 451)

- He encouraged his men to rape enslaved women, (Abu Dawood 2150, Quran 4:24), he put apostates to death, plundered and lived off the wealth of others, captured and enslaved non-Muslim people.

- After Mohammed’s death, his followers attacked and conquered the populations of 28 countries and declared holy war on the people of five major world religions.

Examples from Islamic history:

- In the first 240 years, 11 of the first 32 caliphs were murdered by fellow Muslims.

- Muslim clerics have always engaged in or condoned terrorism all along history and up till now.

- We witness daily religious violence against Hindus, Jews, Buddhists, Muslims, Christians. The converts to Christianity are beheaded.

- The victims of slave traffic done by the Arabs during almost ten centuries amount to tens of millions of people.

- Each year, thousands of Christian homes and churches are torched or bombed by Muslim mobs, and hundreds of Christians, priests, pastors, nuns and other church workers are murdered at the hands of Islamic extremists. The so-called justification varies, from charges of apostasy or evangelism, to purported 'blasphemy' or ' insulting' Islam. Innocent people have even been hacked to death by devout Muslims over cartoons. Islam is an open-ended declaration of war against non-Muslims.

Are the extremists simply being faithful to an authentic Islam in your view?

Clearly YES. Extremists are just applying what their religion teaches them to do.

Should the Pope and the Vatican shed what some view as political correctness and address Islam for what scholars and others believe it really is?

Of course. To illustrate my view, I quote here some excerpts of my personal letter to Pope Francis addressed to him last August: 

“It seems to me that — on the pretext of openness, tolerance and Christian charity — the Catholic Church has fallen into the trap of the liberal left ideology which is destroying the West. Anything that does not espouse this ideology is immediately stigmatized in the name of 'political correctness'. Many think that a certain number of your positions are aligned with this ideology and that, from complacency, you go from concessions to concessions and compromises in compromises at the expense of the truth.”

“The West is in an ethical and moral debacle, both religious and spiritual. And it is not by relativizing the painful reality that these societies will be helped to emerge from their disarray. By defending at all costs Islam and seeking to exonerate it from the horrors committed every day in its name, one ends up betraying the truth.”

“Jesus said to us, 'the Truth will set you free'. It is because he refused any compromise on this point that he knew the fate which was his. Following him, countless Christians preferred martyrdom to compromise, as is the case in Egypt and elsewhere to this day.”

“In the extreme fragility of Christians — both in the West and in the East — they are expecting something from you other than vague and harmless declarations that may obscure reality. Your predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI, had the courage to take a clear and unambiguous position. His attitude has raised a lot of shields and earned him many enemies. But is not a frank confrontation healthier than a dialogue based on compromise? When the Jewish hierarchs asked the apostles to stop announcing the Gospel, they replied: 'As for us, we cannot not proclaim what we have seen and heard ..'. (Acts 4:20).

“It is high time to emerge from a shameful and embarrassed silence in the face of this Islamism that attacks the West and the rest of the world. A systematically conciliatory attitude is interpreted by the majority of Muslims as a sign of fear and weakness. If Jesus said to us: Blessed are the peacemakers, he did not say to us: Blessed are the pacifists. Peace is peace at any cost, at any price. Such an attitude is a pure and simple betrayal of truth.”

How much is violence more of an Arabic problem, given the significantly fewer violent attacks in, for example, Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim nation?

One can say that ‘Arabs’ are naturally violent. But the same could be said of the Barbarians who conquered Europe in the past. These invaders have been progressively ‘civilized’ by the Christian faith to become what they are now. In my opinion, the religious element plays an essential role in shaping a society. The fact that Christian ‘Arabs’ are different than Muslim Arabs is a proof of the strong connection between religion and society.

Are there genuine and workable possibilities for reform of Islam and can dialogue ever be effective?
All attempts to reform Islam by liberal open-minded Muslims have tragically failed so far and I doubt that a ‘reformed Islam’ will still remain ‘Islam’. Here are six unsuccessful attempts to reform Islam in the last two centuries:

1. Reformism in the 19th century: Afghani, Mohamed Abdo, Rashid Reda

2. The Renaissance — or Nahda — in late 19th-early 20th century: Yasji, Girgi Zeidan, Taha Hussein, Salama Moussa, Tewfik el-Hakim…

3. Kemalism and the secularization of the Turkish state — Kemal Atatürk — 1923

4. The Baath and its Pan-Arabism ideology: Michel Aflaq, Bitar, George Habash and the PLO

5. Egyptian nationalism and the neutrality of the state (principle of secularism) – 1919 : Saad Zaghloul: 'Religion is God’s affair and the State everybody’s'.

6. Reversal of the decree on the abrogating and abrogated. At the instigation of El-Azhar institution, Mahmoud Mohamed Taha was hanged in Khartoum on 18.1.1985 for wanting to give the pre-eminence to the Mekkan verses over the Medina ones inciting to war, hated and intolerance.

The Church has often allied with Islamic countries in the past in defense of life issues. Islamic countries can also act as a filter against secularist ideas, preventing such trends as gender ideology from entering their society. How can Islam’s strengths in these areas be best promoted despite its associations with violence?

On such ethical issues, and others, the Church should ally with Muslims to fight against whatever demeans and degrades the human being. This is fertile ground for understanding between the two religions. It can also pave the way for us to denounce anything which is morally unacceptable in Islamic teaching.


[NCR] 2190.24a




















Our Catholic Heritage

Site of the day : Jervaulx




A CISTERCIAN ABBEY was founded at Jervaulx, Yorkshire, in 1156 by the 5th Earl of Richmond. It takes its name by corruption from Ure-vale and sent members to parliament in the days of Edward I. Jervaulx escaped suppression in 1536, but the last abbot, Adam Sedbergh, was executed at Tyburn for participating in the Pilgrimage of Grace. The main witness against him was one of his own former monks. Imprisoned before his execution, he scratched his name on his cell wall in the Tower of London: Adam Sedbar Abbas Jorvall 1537. The mark is still there. There are extensive and beautiful remains at Jervaulx. Commenting on the demolition work carried out by Henry VIII's Visitors at the time of the Dissolution of the monasteries, Dom David Knowles wrote in his Religious Orders in England: 'When five years later, their work was done, nettles and the fire-weed were springing from the dust, and the ruins of Hailes and Roche and Jervaulx were already beginning to wear the mantle of silence that covers them today'. Jervaulx abbey is in private hands, but open at all reasonable times. As Jervaulx's first owner after the Dissolution, Thomas Cromwell ransacked the abbey and used the material to build the Old Hall in the grounds. For most of the 20th-century it was derelict, but was recently restored.


CF News / Our Catholic Heritage


Lauda Sion Salvatorem (Corpus Christi, Sequence)

Benedictine Monks of the Abbey of Saint Maurice et Saint Maur de Clervaux.



[Stephan George] 2190.26






















Corpus Xti procession


Feast of Corpus Christi

TODAY the Church shows the world the Corpus Christi - the Body of Christ. And she invites us to adore him: Venite adoremus -Come let us adore him. The attention of believers is focused on the Sacrament in which Christ has left himself: Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity. It is the reason for considering it as the holiest reality: 'the Blessed Sacrament', living memorial of the redeeming Sacrifice. On the Solemnity of Corpus Christi, we return to that 'Thursday' which we call 'Holy', on which the Redeemer celebrated his last Passover with the disciples: it was the Last Supper, fulfilling the Jewish passover supper and inaugurating the Eucharistic rite.

[St John Paul II] 2190.27











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