4 CF NEWS 2224 /title>




The National Association of Catholic Families


This edition of CF NEWS (No.2224) posted at 12.51 pm on Sunday, March 11th, 2018. 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

Prayer intentions for March  VIDEO  CONTINUE READING
The end to clerical celibacy? CONTINUE READING
Müller: Magisterium not supposed to lead faithful 'into confusion' CONTINUE READING
Dutch Cardinal blames Pope's Amoris Laetitia for ‘fracturing’ the Church CONTINUE READING
EWTN interviewee warns that Francis has deliberately created confusion CONTINUE READING
Ex-head of Vatican bank sent to trial on embezzlement charge CONTINUE READING
Placuit Deo: Stealth correction of Francis? CONTINUE READING
Cardinal Kasper doubles down on Amoris Laetitia CONTINUE READING

Humanae Vitae

New assault on 'Humanae Vitae' begins CONTINUE READING
On Contraception, Now even Wojtyla is “rigid” and “doctrinaire” CONTINUE READING

United Nations

Holy See defends children's rights before Human Rights Council CONTINUE READING
UNESCO pushes sex-ed rejected by General Assembl CONTINUE READING

News from around the world

AUSTRALIA Archbishop mocks Chinese Cardinal Zen CONTINUE READING
BELGIUM Cardinal Sarah: 'I denounce the crisis of Faith of a betraying clergy' CONTINUE READING
CANADA Student mob in protest against Jordan Peterson  VIDEO CONTINUE READING
CANADA Government starts euthanising prisoners CONTINUE READING
CHINA Government creates machine to rate citizens 'trustworthiness' CONTINUE READING
GERMANY Bishops' claim Polish in 'identity crisis' CONTINUE READING
GERMANY Brandmüller on the bishops' new 'wholly dishonest ploy' CONTINUE READING w15
HONDURAS Former seminarians allege grave sexual misconduct by bishop CONTINUE READING
IRELAND Minister warns Church to 'celebrate' homosexuality at WMF CONTINUE READING
IRELAND Supreme Court rules unborn children have no legal rights CONTINUE READING
SPAIN Prominent priest speaks about Schism CONTINUE READING
UK Catholic Church sets out a vision for closer ties with Islam CONTINUE READING
UK Catholic schools CONTINUE READING
UK What your children are being taught
USA Jim Caviezel tells students to 'stand out' and 'be saints'
Oregon bill allows mentally ill patients to be starved to death CONTINUE READING
INTERNATIONAL gloria.tv.news
INTERNATIONAL Some jihad headlines of the week CONTINUE READING
INTERNATIONAL The World Over with Raymond Arroyo


Tradition as a Form of Discernment  VIDEO  CONTINUE READING


Hello Yello Clothing CONTINUE READING




Pope Francis: The Movie  VIDEO  CONTINUE READING
WND: Pope Francis is wreaking havov CONTINUE READING

Book reviews

Ross Douthat tackles the 21st century CONTINUE READING
What Really Happened at Vatican II CONTINUE READING

Comment from the internet

Cardinal Eijk on euthanasia, gender theory, homosexuality, marriage CONTINUE READING
Father Weinandy: The errors of Amoris Laetitia CONTINUE READING
Francis wants Cabbage Heads CONTINUE READING
Letter to a Seminarian thinking of leaving the Seminary CONTINUE READING
An Anti-Traditionalist rants—and a Traditionalist responds CONTINUE READING

Our Catholic Heritage

Site of the day : Old Romney CONTINUE READING
Attende Domine


Saint Thomas Aquinas CONTINUE READING




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Vatican watch


Prayer intentions for March





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Our Lady


Blessed Virgin Mary Mother of the Church

POPE FRANCIS is instituting a new feast in honour of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church.

The feast grew out of an earlier votive Mass, which in turn grew out of Pope Paul VI's emphasis on Mary's maternal role in the Church at the Second Vatican Council.

Here is the official text from the Congregation for Divine Worship: Decree on the Celebration of the Blessed Virgin Mary Mother of the Church in the General Roman Calendar.


FR.JOHN HUNWICKE comments: 'This new compulsory memoria is to be observed on the Monday after Whit Sunday. The fact that the Decree establishing it has emerged from the CDW and not from Ecclesia Dei makes clear that it applies to the Ordinary and not at all to the Extraordinary Form. This is confirmed beyond any doubt by the phraseology of the Decree and the details of the Propers issued. Incidentally, the Decree should have provided (as the law does with regard to the - also movable - memoria of the Immaculate Heart) what happens in years when this movable memoria coincides with an immovable compulsory memoria.

The intelligent thing about this innovation is, of course, that it associates our Lady's Motherhood of the Church with the Day of Pentecost, when she sat in the midst of the Apostles as they received the empowering Spirit. But I hope it will not be misused to draw our blessed Lady into the promotion of Bergoglian ecclesiological errors regarding the alleged role of the Holy Ghost in daily inspiring the Roman Pontiff to espouse or disseminate new doctrine.


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Will the Pan-Amazonian synod result in an end to clerical celibacy?

EDWARD PENTIN reports from Rome for the National Catholic Register:'The Vatican announced on Thursday that Pope Francis has appointed members of a pre-synodal council who will collaborate with the secretariat of the Synod of Bishops in preparation for the Pan-Amazonian synod next year.

Also announced was the theme of the October 2019 synod: Amazonia: new pathways for the Church and for an integral ecology.

Of particular, though unexpected, interest are the appointments of Cardinal Claudio Hummes and retired Bishop Erwin Kräutler to the council. Both have advocated a change in discipline to allow married clergy in the Latin rite, and the Pan Amazonian synod is expected to provide a forum to at least discuss the matter.

Although some exceptions already exist to allow married priests in the Catholic Church (the Eastern rites and the Catholic Ordinariate for example), the Amazonian case could be used to allow for married clergy wherever priest shortages might exist, and therefore permit a far wider provision.

Bishop Kräutler, an Austrian who headed the Xingu diocese in Brazil from 1981-2015, has long argued for viri probati (ordination or married men of proven virtue) to make up for a shortage of priests in remote Amazonian regions.

A supporter of the ordination of women despite Pope Francis and his predecessors definitively ruling it out, Bishop Kräutler said in an interview last year that he thinks the Pan-Amazonian synod might consider the issue of viri probati, and disclosed that after meeting Pope Francis in 2014, the Holy Father had encouraged him to 'courageously' explore the matter.

Francis reportedly wanted the issue discussed at the next synod this October, but the theme was voted down by the majority of members on the ordinary council of the Synod of Bishops, the body charged with drawing up the theme. Instead, they opted for a synod on 'Young People, the Faith and the Discernment of Vocation.'

Cardinal Hummes, meanwhile, has made comments in the past advocating for a change in the discipline.

A friend of the Holy Father who gave him the inspiration to choose the name Francis, the Brazilian cardinal made headlines back in 2006 when he argued that 'even though celibacy is part of Catholic history and culture, the Church could review this question, because celibacy is not a dogma but a disciplinary question.'

He made the comments shortly before taking up his position as prefect of the Congregation for Clergy, and was made to sign a statement supporting the discipline of clerical celibacy soon after arriving in Rome.

Whether any change to the discipline will actually happen remains speculative, but past statements along with Thursday’s appointments makes it clear that a push for some change to the discipline is already going ahead.

In January, the current prefect of the Congregation for Clergy, Cardinal Beniamino Stella, said the idea of exceptionally ordaining older married men of proven virtue to celebrate the Eucharist in isolated Catholic communities should be discussed. He also brought up the issue at the Congregation’s plenary meeting last year, saying it was something the dicastery was 'following.'

He also mentioned at the plenary a subject later discussed by the C9 Group of Cardinals last year, about transferring authorisations concerning the passage of a new marriage for a widowed permanent deacon, and requests for priestly ordination by widowed permanent deacons, from the Vatican to bishops’ conferences.

At the moment, without a good reason such as dependent children, a widowed permanent deacon cannot remarry and continue to serve as a deacon. Informed Vatican sources have told the Register that moving authorisation ultimately to bishops' conferences, especially concerning dispensation (from the impediment to remarry), would end up weakening the sacrament as cases could be handled faster, less rigorously and be affected by personal sentiment.

Some therefore see this as part of a 'back-door' attempt to introduce changes to clerical celibacy. 'It could further pave the way to a progressive degradation of such a requirement, and then for priests too,' said a source with detailed knowledge of the matter. 'It's the building of a tendency, forcing people to become used to not cherishing such a requirement, to becoming less and less used to it, bit by bit.' The prohibition of a second marriage, he added, 'dates back to the beginning of Christianity.'

Other indications of a push to change discipline in this area have included comments made by Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin. In 2013, he hinted that he would welcome such a change, saying it was a tradition not a dogma and so 'open to discussion.' He went on to note that while the Church is not a democratic institution, it needs to 'reflect the democratic spirit of the times and adopt a collegial way of governing.' More recently, he has underlined the importance of priestly celibacy while continuing to advocate for a possible change.

Last year in an interview in the German newspaper Die Zeit, Pope Francis said: 'We have to study whether viri probati are a possibility. We then also need to determine which tasks they could take on, such as in remote communities, for example.'

Next year's synod will also address a wide variety of other topics including inculturation and abuse of the environment.

Here below is the full list of the pre-synodal council:

1. His Eminence Cardinal Cláudio HUMMES, O.F.M., archbishop emeritus of São Paulo (Brazil), President of the Red Eclesial Panamazónica.

2. His Eminence Cardinal Peter Kodwo Appiah TURKSON, prefect of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development.

3. His Eminence Cardinal Carlos AGUIAR RETES, archbishop of México (Mexico).

4. His Excellency Msgr. Pedro Ricardo BARRETO JIMENO, S.J., archbishop of Huancayo (Peru), Vice President of the Red Eclesial Panamazónica.

5. His Excellency Msgr. Paul Richard GALLAGHER, titular archbishop of Hodelm, Secretary for Relations with States.

6. His Excellency Msgr. Edmundo Ponciano VALENZUELA MELLID, archbishop of Asunción (Paraguay).

7. His Excellency Msgr. Roque PALOSCHI, archbishop of Porto Velho, Rondônia (Brazil).

8. His Excellency Msgr. Oscar Vicente OJEA, bishop of San Isidro, President of the Episcopal Conference (Argentina).

9. His Excellency Msgr. Neri José TONDELLO, bishop of Juína, Mato Grosso (Brazil).

10. His Excellency Msgr. Karel Martinus CHOENNIE, bishop of Paramaribo (Suriname).

11. His Excellency Msgr. Erwin KRÄUTLER, C.PP.S., prelate emeritus of Xingu, Parà (Brazil).

12. His Excellency Msgr. José Ángel DIVASSÓN CILVETI, S.D.B., formerly vicar apostolic of Puerto Ayacucho (Venezuela), titular bishop of Bamaccora.

13. His Excellency Msgr. Rafael COB GARCÍA, vicar apostolic of Puyo, titular bishop of Cerbali (Ecuador).

14. His Excellency Msgr. Eugenio COTER, vicar apostolic of Pando, titular bishop of Tibiuca (Bolivia).

15. His Excellency Msgr. Joaquín Humberto PINZÓN GÜIZA, I.M.C., vicar apostolic of Puerto Leguízamo-Solano, titular bishop of Ottocio (Colombia).

16. His Excellency Msgr. David MARTÍNEZ DE AGUIRRE GUINEA, O.P., vicar apostolic of Puerto Maldonado, titular bishop of Izirzada (Peru).

17. Rev. Sr. María Irene LOPES DOS SANTOS, S.C.M.S.T.B.G., delegate of the Confederación Latinoamericana y Caribeña de Religiosos y Religiosas (CLAR).

18. Mr. Mauricio LÓPEZ, executive secretary of REPAM (Ecuador).



















Cardinal Müller: Magisterium is not supposed to lead faithful 'into confusion'

FORMULATING pastoral practices based on 'individual cases' is a 'rhetorical trick' that undermines the unity of the faith, said Cardinal Gerhard Müller in an interview published last week in German and translated into English by LifeSiteNews.

'That is why papal and episcopal statements on the reception of the Sacraments have to be prepared in such a clear manner that they serve the salvation of the people. Christ did not institute the Magisterium in order to initiate processes which lead into confusion,' he said.

Cardinal Müller made the comments to Die Tagespost last week.

He was reacting primarily to the German bishops' decision to open Communion to the Protestant spouses of Catholics in some cases. LifeSiteNews reported only excerpts from the former Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith's interview to the German journalist Regina Einig. His comments may also have been directed, in part, toward Pope Francis' exhortation Amoris Laetitia which, due to ambiguity, has been interpreted by many bishops and cardinals as allowing habitual adulterers to receive Communion, contrary to previous Church teaching.

Müller said that the Eucharist cannot simply be given to anyone, just because they want it.

'Neither the pope nor we bishops may re-define the Sacraments as a means to soothe psychological pains and fulfill personal spiritual needs,' he said when asked about a Protestant married to a Catholic receiving the sacrament.

When asked about Pope Francis' apparent openness through vague statements and gestures to have non-Catholic Christians receiving Holy Communion, the Cardinal said they have 'no magisterial weight.'

'The task of the pope, together with the Congregation for the Faith, is to preserve the unity of the Church in the revealed truth. It is legitimate to have a pluralism in theology, but a pluralism in the Faith is wrong. Because there is only one Faith and one Church,' he said.

'The pope might think, according to his own feeling, that his task is not to pronounce interdicts and that he, rather, should find formulations which appeal to those outside of the Church. This pastoral impetus is good. [But] the mission and task of the pope is also to convince people of the Faith and to lead them into the depth of the Gospel according to the mandate of Jesus that Peter shall confirm his brethren, always and everywhere, in that exact revealed Faith (Luke 22,32),' he added.

In this same interview, Cardinal Müller not only opposed the German bishops' decision to open Communion to the Protestant spouses of Catholics but also the suggestion raised by German bishops to offer a blessing for homosexual couples.

LifeSiteNews is pleased to provide a translation of the entire interview, translated by Dr. Maike Hickson


Question: Your Eminence, the German bishops want to admit mixed marriages in individual cases to Holy Communion; the non-Catholic spouse may make here his own decision of conscience. Is this a form of ecumencial progress?

There would be only ecumenical progress if we came closer to the great goal of the unity of Christians in the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. The precondition for this, however, would be the recognition of the sacramentality of the Church and of the fact that we have no power of disposal over the Sacraments. Here, one would first have to clarify whether bishops' conferences do not step over their own area of authority in individual cases. They have no power to make decisions in questions of Faith in a manner that the result, as a practical consequence, would contradict the Faith. That is why St. Paul, in Antioch, stood up openly to St. Peter, because the latter 'was to be blamed' for ambiguous conduct which darkened the 'truth of the Gospel' (Gal. 2: 11, 14).

Question: But some are hoping that this new step would foster a rapprochement of the confessions. What is there to be objected?

One may not separate pastoral practice from the Church's doctrine. If we depart from the revealed Faith [supposedly] for the sake of the salvation of souls, it would mean to correct God who in our eyes would then not be at all capable of foreseeing in His Commandments all the possible concrete individual cases. That would be madness, in whose abyss the Church then would sink. We cannot do so as if one could accomplish the full community of the Church - which is represented in the Eucharist - without 'considering our teachings to be true,' as Justin the Martyr already said in his First Apology (art. 66, written around 150 B.C. in Rome). If, according to Vatican II's Constitution on the Liturgy (SC 10; 47), the Eucharist is the 'source and climax' of the liturgical life of the Church, how could one then claim that the question as to whether someone may fully partake in it does not touch the question of Faith? The Church is the Mystical Body of Christ, and the Eucharist the Sacramental Body of Christ, which one may only receive if one belongs fully and without obstacle to that same one visible Church, according to one's profession and to one's state of Grace. This connection can only get lost where this bond between the Church and the Sacraments is not as highly valued as in the Catholic Faith - as well as in the Orthodox faith - or where there is dominant a [dubious] view according to which one may save oneself individually.

Question: But the Church knows exceptions?

But here it is not about the fulfillment of spiritual needs or about an attentiveness toward social pressures. If a Protestant Christian finds himself in an emergency situation, in which his salvation is at stake - that is to say, if he is in danger of death - and where he cannot reach his own clergyman and he, as an individual, can agree in that moment with the Catholic Faith in the Eucharist and in the sacramental essence of the Catholic Church, such a person may, for the sake of his salvation, receive the Sacraments: first Penance, then Holy Communion. But the marriage with a Catholic partner, the family ties, or a good friendship with non-Catholic Christians do not fulfill the preconditions for such an emergency situation where it is about eternal salvation. He who shares the Catholic Eucharistic Faith, additionally has to reject those teachings of non-Catholic communities that are opposed to it.

Question: However, in the [episcopal] decision, there is only talk of individual cases.

The formulation 'individual cases' is a rhetorical trick. Most of the faithful are no theologians who have an overview over this topic. That is why papal and episcopal statements on the reception of the Sacraments have to be prepared in such a clear manner that they serve the salvation of the people. Christ did not institute the Magisterium in order to initiate processes which lead into confusion. The Holy Ghost, by the way, is not the stopgap for deficient knowledge of, and theological reflection on, the Catholic doctrine. The institution of the Church by the historic Christ must not be played against the living presence of the elevated Lord in the Holy Ghost. The Magisterium was transmitted to the shepherds in order to exercise power over others, but only in order to pass on to all of the faithful Christ's teaching that has been entrusted to them - and not at all in order to please members of one's own ideological group. Bishops and priests are not the cause of Grace, but merely administer the Sacraments of Grace, as Catholic Tradition distinguishes it in a meticulous manner.

Question: The [German] bishops refer to Code of Canon Law 844, § 4 CIC and the 'grave spiritual need' upon which a Protestant spouse may rely. How do you assess this interpretation of the law?

It is not right to apply can. 844, § 4 CIC in this fundamental manner to mixed marriages. Mixed marriages are not an emergency situation. Through it, the salvation of the spouses is not endangered. On the contrary, it is a great challenge which can definitely be dealt with together in the Faith. Neither the pope nor we bishops may re-define the Sacraments as a means to soothe psychological pains and fulfill personal spiritual needs. They are effective signs of the God's Grace. We respect the good will and the religious conviction of our fellow Christians from other denominations, but we also expect that our Faith is respected as an expression of our conviction, and that it is not demeaned as a product of stubbornness or of a 'conservative' world view.

Question: What is the essential matter in light of the Catholic understanding, and especially in this context?

For the Catholic understanding, the connection between Church and Sacrament is decisive. The Church is not an institution which offers religious rites - and under certain conditions also to non-members - but the Church lives out her being and her life in the Sacraments. For the Protestants, however, the Sacraments merely serve as a confirmation of a faith which alone has already justified the sinner. We do not share this view; we respectively say more about the Sacraments. We believe in the objective efficacy of the Sacraments.

Question: The reformed evangelical theologian, Ulrich Körtner (University of Vienna [Austria]), speaks in this context about 'botch-up.' According to him, the [German] bishops are giving their consent ['sanctus'] to the practice, while the Catholic spouse still is not admitted to Protestant communion. How do you assess Körtner's thesis that a sound theology would look differently?

Körtner speaks in view of a mutual admittance which, however, would only be justified if the Protestant last supper and the Catholic Eucharist would be identical and the relations between Church-justification-Sacrament would be the identical in the Catholic Church as in the different communities with a Protestant background. I have heard that Catholic theologians are critical about the quality of the first draft [as written by the German bishops] with regard to its Biblical foundation and its correspondence with the authentic Magisterium of the Catholic Church, but, so far, the definitive handout is not yet available. If one, however, deals with principles in too loose of a fashion, one may not be astonished when other undesired conclusions are being drawn from it.

Question: Which ones, for example?

The Catholic Faith is in effect being relativized. Progress in the field of ecumenism is desirable and necessary. But from the Catholic point of view, this progress may not go into the direction of a protestantization of the Catholic Church, which would mean a reverse 'ecumenism of return.' Let us only imagine a Protestant youth who has a close bond with a Catholic friend and asks for the Sacraments of Confirmation, but, at the same time, wishes to remain a Protestant. Or what about a good, practicing Catholic who legally leaves the Catholic Church as a public corporation [in Germany, one registers with the state one's membership with the Church] out of disdain over her increasing politicization - as he conceives it - for what reason could one deny him, of all people, Holy Communion?

Question: But the proponents of the new rule refer to some vague statements of the pope at the Lutheran church in Rome.

But these statements and gestures are cutting no ice in this context. They have no magisterial weight. Many speak currently about a crisis in the Roman Magisterium, which allows contradictory dogmatic statements issued by bishops' conferences instead of forbidding them, as would be the duty of the Congregation for the Faith. No ecclesial teaching authority can give to the bishops' conferences - which only exist due to a Church law - a teaching competence which they do not have and which they cannot have. The task of the pope, together with the Congregation for the Faith, is to preserve the unity of the Church in the revealed truth. It is legitimate to have a pluralism in theology, but a pluralism in the Faith is wrong. Because there is only one Faith and one Church. The pope might think, according to his own feeling, that his task is not to pronounce interdicts and that he, rather, should find formulations which appeal to those outside of the Church. This pastoral impetus is good. [But] the mission and task of the pope is also to convince people of the Faith and to lead them into the depth of the Gospel according to the mandate of Jesus that Peter shall confirm his brethren, always and everywhere, in that exact revealed Faith (Luke 22,32).

Question: How does the path of ecumenism look in your view?

Of course we do not any more live in the age of confessional controversies, but each is still called to understand ever more deeply the faith of one's community. That is, in my view, the path of ecumenism: to approach one another in an honest manner and to overcome misunderstandings. We Catholics do not wish to give up the sacramentality of the Church. That would be the greatest betrayal of our profession of Faith. What is gained for the unity of the Church if one creates within one's own ranks strife, and strikes wounds? Many have invoked collegiality and have kept talking and talking about synodality as the common path. What hinders us to practice them in these much-praised individual cases?

Question: The notion of an ecumenism of return has today a bad reputation. But when a Protestant Christian, who is married to a Catholic, shares that Catholic Faith - what speaks against conversion?

For every good pastor, there are margins of discretion - depending upon the question as to which family tradition the Protestant spouse stems from, and which considerations he has to keep in mind. But in the normal case it would be a consequent step because there exists only the one truth. It cannot be God's will that there are several religious denominations existing next to one another whose doctrines are contradicting each other. We might live now in a so-called post-confessional age. That is a social-psychological analysis or an analysis pertaining to the history of ideas. But the Catholic Church has never been a denomination such as Protestants have formed in their own communities according to Luther, Zwingli, Calvin, and others. She sees herself, in her Creed which binds each Catholic in his conscience, as the one Church founded by Christ Himself and as led by the pope in community with the bishops (Lumen gentium 8). Everybody is entitled to contest this claim. But then he is not Catholic.

Question: The 'decision of conscience in individual cases' is, according to some theologians, to prepare the way also for the blessing of homosexual couples. How do you assess this?

Behind the endlessly 'opened doors,' there does not necessarily stand a solid house - it could also be a fake. There will only come fresh air through the windows, if it exists outside. Instead of repeating mantra-like these old images, one should formulate things in a theologically correct way. That is the best contribution for good pastoral care and for ecumenism. The expression 'decision of conscience in individual cases' is redundant ['ein weisser Schimmel'], because decisions of conscience can always only be made in individual cases. It is about my free positioning in the face of revealed truths and God's moral laws. There are no exceptions to God's laws, because they are always about the salvation of man. The circumstances, however, can enlarge or mitigate the size of my guilt. Here, God alone is the judge over each man. Much less can I deny individual truths of the Faith on occasion, just as I cannot violate God's Commandments Who shows me in them the way to salvation and to well-being.

Question: What speaks against the blessing of homosexual unions?

To bless means to approve something according to the meaning which God has laid into the institutions of His creation, and first and foremost into the persons themselves. Nobody condemns as a person somebody with homosexual inclinations. That would be a sacrilegious presumption to question the essential goodness of the existence of a person created by God. By the way, there are no homosexuals as a distinct class of people. That would be the worst form of discrimination. Because God created man according to his image and likeness, and He created them as man and woman. But when homosexual acts contradict God's Will, then nobody may ask for God's blessing for them. Pastoral care looks different and serves the peace of the soul only if it remains founded in truth. A true pastoral care which is about the people - and not about one's own reputation in the published opinion - helps those concerned to find their way to salvation in spite of all the difficulties, and to rejoice about their lives as a gift from God and thus also to recognize one's own call to eternal life.

Question: But it is said that such relationships also have some positive elements and values. Are you convinced by this argument?

Yes of course, there are positive elements in nearly all relationships. But that does not justify acts against God's Commandments. If siblings loyally take care of one another, they have no legitimacy that they take advantage of one another in individual cases with regard to their inheritance. Love and truth always belong together, they are inseparable. All of God's Commandments are valid for everybody to whom God has revealed Himself in Jesus Christ as truth and life. 'If we keep His Commandments, we recognize that we know Him. Whoever says 'I know Him,' but does not keep His Commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.' (1 John 2:3sq.)

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Dutch Cardinal blames Pope Francis’ Amoris Laetitia for ‘fracturing’ Catholic Church

DOROTHY CUMMING McLEAN reports for LifeSiteNews: - A cardinal from the Netherlands has stated that the question of divorced-and-civilly ‘remarried’ Catholics receiving Holy Communion is 'fracturing' the Church. The source of the confusion, he says, is Pope Francis’ 2016 exhortation Amoris Laetitia, specifically Paragraph 305.

Willem Jacobus Cardinal Eijk recently gave an interview to the Italian monthly magazine Il Timone in which he defended traditional Church doctrine. He remarked on the damage Pope Francis’ lack of clarity on the issue has done to the Church.

'The question of whether it is possible to consent to the so-called divorced and civilly remarried receiving sacramental absolution and thus the Eucharist is fracturing the Church,' he said.

'The source of confusion is the Post-Synodal Exhortation Amoris Laetitia,' he continued. 'This confusion concerns above all paragraph 305 of the exhortation.'

Eijk noted that some bishops’ conferences have introduced pastoral regulations that imply that divorced-and-civilly-remarried couples may be admitted to Holy Communion, while others 'exclude this as a possibility.'

This creates a problem in itself, one that the Cardinal hopes Francis will resolve.

'That which is true in place A cannot be false in place B,' Eijk said.

'These differing interpretations of the exhortation, which regard doctrinal questions, are causing confusion among the faithful. Therefore, I would be happy if the Pope would create clarity on this matter, preferably in the form of some sort of a magisterial document.'

The Cardinal said that there can be no such thing as remarriage in the Catholic Church if a valid union already exists.

'The relationship between Christ and the Church is a total mutual gift,' Eijk explained.

'The total gift of Christ to the Church is realized in the gift of His life on the Cross. This total gift is made present in the Sacrament of the Eucharist. Whoever participates in the Eucharist ought to be ready to make a total gift of himself, which shares in the total gift of Christ to the Church. Whoever divorces and remarries in a civil ceremony, while the first marriage has not been declared null, violates the total mutual gift which the first marriage implies. The second marriage in a civil ceremony is not a true and proper marriage,' he said.

The cardinal said that violating the 'total gift' of the valid first marriage renders the person involved in the second marriage 'unworthy' of receiving the Blessed Sacrament, although of course the person may still participate in the liturgical celebration and receive pastoral care.

In the situation in which the cohabiting couple cannot separate for some serious reason, like their obligations to their mutual children, they may be admitted to the Sacrament of Reconciliation (confession) and Holy Communion only if they meet the conditions mentioned in paragraph 84 of Familiaris Consortio and in paragraph 29 of Sacramentum Caritatis, Eijk affirmed.

'One of these conditions is that they must commit themselves to living as brother and sister, that is, to stop having sexual relations.'

He also explained during the interview how the Netherlands has slid down the 'slippery slope' of unintended moral consequences towards mass abortion and euthanasia-on-demand. Eijk blamed the UN, other international institutions and individual nations for spreading dehumanizing 'gender theory.'

The entire interview, translated into English by Giuseppe Pellegrino, has been published by the OnePeterFive blog (below).

An extraordinarily well-educated man, Eijk, 65, is a doctor several times over. He took a degree in medicine from the University of Amsterdam before he was ordained a priest. He later completed a PhD in medicine with a dissertation about euthanasia. The thesis of his next doctorate, in philosophy, was titled 'The ethical problems of genetic engineering of human beings.' His final doctorate, in theology, was awarded by the Lateran in Rome.

In 2007 Eijk was appointed the Metropolitan Archbishop of Utrecht by Benedict XVI, and in 2017 Benedict made him a Cardinal. Eijk was present at both the Extraordinary and the Ordinary Synods on the Family, where he argued against admitting unrepentant adulterers to the sacraments.

Eijk again argued against the novelty in Eleven Cardinals Speak on Marriage and the Family: Essays from a Pastoral Viewpoint, which was published in 2015 by Ignatius Press. He was one of the thirteen cardinals who wrote to Pope Francis asking him not to let the Ordinary Synod be hijacked by the question of the divorced-and-remarried.

[LSN] 2224.T1



















Orthodox Catholic author on EWTN warns that the Pope has deliberately created confusion

POPE FRANCIS has deliberately created confusion to allow for Catholic teaching to be circumvented, a longtime Catholic commentator has said, and Francis' inner circle contains people more radical in their beliefs than him.

Further, five years into Francis' papacy, the mandate the pope was given to reform the Curia and Vatican finances has not been satisfied, Catholic World News Editor Philip Lawler said, because it's not high on Francis' agenda.

Intervention is needed in the direction Francis is taking the Church, Lawler said in a discussion on The World Over centering on some of the confusing and controversial aspects of the Francis pontificate. (Interview with Lawler begins at 23:05 in the video below)

EWTN anchor and Managing Editor Raymond Arroyo welcomed Lawler Thursday for a discussion of Lawler's just released book 'Lost Shepherd: How Pope Francis is Misleading His Flock' (2018) Regnery.

'Pope Francis has created enough confusion so that there is a huge space for maneuver for people who want to one way or another take an end around around Church moral teachings,' Lawler told Arroyo at the start of their conversation. Arroyo assented this has been done through the Francis pontificate's much-touted notions of accompaniment and mercy.

Released February 26, Arroyo pointed out the book has earned criticism for Lawler. Others noted prior to his book's release the significance of Lawler, not at all known as an explosive Catholic observer, feeling compelled to write in criticism of the pope.

Lawler clarified for Arroyo that he did not want to write the book critical of Francis when asked what moved him to do so. It came after an essay he'd written a year ago for CatholicCulture.com when he'd reached a boiling point of frustration with the confusion.

Significant resonation with the frustration

Titled 'This Disastrous Papacy,' Lawler recounted that the post prompted more reaction than anything else he's written in 30 years of journalism. In working on the book, Lawler said he found people in need of reassurance amid the concerning direction of the papacy, along with being beset by the question of whether they were alone in feeling this.

'And I said, that tells me there's a hunger out there,' recalled Lawler. 'There are people who are very much confused and dismayed and feeling betrayed, and wondering, 'Is something wrong with them, is something wrong with the faith?'

'And I found that as I spoke with these people, oddly enough they felt reassured by what I was saying,' Lawler said. 'Because if you say, 'No you're not crazy, yes, there is a problem, we have a problem with the pope,' (people then understand it's not just them thinking this).

The pope's apostolic exhortation Amoris laetitia was the final straw for Lawler, who told Arroyo he was originally very enthusiastic about Pope Francis, but over time became more and more concerned, dismayed and disoriented.

'When I saw what happened with the manipulation of the Synod and then with Amoris laetitia coming after it, I said, 'This is more than simply imprudence in expression,'' Lawler explained. 'This is a deliberate effort to confuse.'

AL achieves the opposite of the Synod's expressed intent

'The problem is that Amoris laetitia is intentionally unclear on the one question that everybody had topmost in their mind going into both meetings of the Synod,' Lawler reminded Arroyo, 'which is, 'Will the Church change her perennial teaching that Catholics who are divorced and remarried illicitly cannot receive Communion?''

'The general impression certainly created by the apostolic exhortation is that the Church has changed her teaching,' stated Lawler.

Arroyo and Lawler discussed the conflicting interpretations of the pope's document throughout the world, with some bishops saying the Church's pastoral practice has changed and others saying it had not - and the faithful being left in the middle. They talked as well about how, when pastoral practice is changed, the result is doctrine no longer matters anymore because 'the lived doctrine' has become unrecognizable - which is the same end result as changing Church teaching.

'That's precisely the point,' Lawler told Arroyo. 'Why else would Pope Francis have declined to answer the dubia - the perfectly legitimate questions from four cardinals asking him for clarity?'

'Why would you not want clarity?' asked Lawler. 'Unless your intent was to provide that fuzzy space in which people can maneuver around Church teaching.'

Arroyo asked Lawler to respond to comments made in 2015 by one member of the pope's circle, Archbishop Victor Fernandez, that Francis is aiming at irreversible reform in the Church.

Lawler responded that he didn't know why Francis would have this as his goal.

'But there's something inherently wrong with the idea of irreversible reform unless what you mean by reform is back to the fundamentals of the Catholic faith,' he added, 'because the role of the pope is inherently to conserve, to protect the deposit of the faith.'

Arroyo quizzed Lawler on the provocative nature of his book and its title, and whether he was at all reticent about it.

Intervention needed

'I don't enjoy criticizing the pope,' Lawler told him. 'But there's a point at which in a loving family, if the father has a problem, you have to confront it. Eventually there has to be an intervention - And we need an intervention.'

The men talked about the odd nature of the Francis' election, and whether there's any validity to rumors that his election was orchestrated.

Lawler said some cardinals had given the clear impression that they were lobbying for Francis, which is not licit. This did not shock him, and he wished it weren't the case.

Sharing an excerpt from the book in which Lawler details coming to the troubling conclusion that Francis was a radical leading the Church away from the ancient sources of the faith, Arroyo asked Lawler why Francis would think he could get away with this, or whether the problem is more one of his advisors and confidants.

'I do believe there are people surrounding this pope who are much more radical in their beliefs than he is,' Lawler said. 'It is suggestive, again, that with Amoris laetitia Pope Francis does not directly contradict Church teaching - it's in footnotes, it's in the space between the lines.'

Because of the confusion that has spread throughout the Church, Lawler shared with Arroyo that people in the last week since his book has come out have asked him a lot of questions about whether the Church has changed its teaching on various things.

'And I say, No,' Lawler said. 'But they had that impression; Why? Because the lid is off.'

An absence of authentic reform

Asked by Arroyo if there was a conflict between Francis' public persona and the means of governing under his pontificate, Lawler said, 'yes'.

The cardinals before him were talking about the need for reform of the curia and the economic workings of the Vatican, said Lawler, and for accountability and responsibility.

'But as far as the mandate for reform - it simply hasn't happened,' he stated. 'The curia has not been significantly reformed. There have been some shuffling of responsibilities, but we're now five years in, and there's not substantial reform. As far as the economic reform that has tumbled and fallen apart completely.'

'He had a mandate for reform and it's not happening,' added Lawler. 'It's not at the top if his agenda. He's doing different things.'

What's unfortunately happened, he said, is that the old guard at the Vatican has become even more entrenched, 'And there's less accountability than there was five year ago.'

Lawler called upon Catholics to pray, both for the pope and for those around him.

'And as a practical matter, you ask your own bishop to stand up and help bring clarity back in an age of confusion,' Lawler concluded. 'If that means saying unpopular things, I'm sorry, well, say unpopular things.'

[LSN] 2224.3



















Ex-head of Vatican bank sent to trial on embezzlement charge

REUTERS reports: 'A former president of the Vatican Bank has been ordered to stand trial on charges of embezzlement and money laundering, the Vatican said, the highest ranking Holy See financial official to be indicted.

A statement by the bank, officially known as the Institute for Works of Religion (IOR), said the former president's legal counsel was also indicted.

The two are Angelo Caloia, 78, who was president of the IOR from 1999 and 2009, and lawyer Gabriele Liuzzo, 94. A third person who was originally under investigation, former IOR director general Lelio Scaletti, died several years ago.

The bank said 'unlawful conduct' by the three was carried out between 2001 and 2008 during'the disposal of a considerable part of the institute's real estate assets'.

It said damages had been estimated to be more than 50 million euro and that the IOR would be seeking compensation for damages. The trial is due to start on March 15.

Reuters reported exclusively in December 2014 that the Vatican's top prosecutor, Gian Piero Milano, had frozen millions of dollars in accounts held by the three men.

They were suspected of embezzling money while managing the sale of 29 buildings sold by the Vatican bank to mainly Italian buyers between 2001 and 2008, according to a copy of the freezing order reviewed by Reuters at the time.

In the freezing order, Milano said the men regularly under-represented the proceeds from real estate sales in the Vatican bank's official books. The men allegedly received the difference between the real sale prices and the amount officially recorded separately and often in cash, according to the order.

Some of the proceeds were deposited in a Rome bank account that was not registered on the IOR's balance sheet, the prosecutor said. An estimated 57 million euros were allegedly siphoned off illegally between 2001 and 2008.

The bank's internal investigation into the alleged scam begun in 2013 by then-president Ernst von Freyberg, a German businessman.

Freyberg commissioned an independent audit of the sale of properties that had been owned by the bank after noting suspicious accounting procedures under previous administrations.

Feyberg, who was president until 2014, began an overhaul of the bank, which for decades was embroiled in numerous financial scandals.

Thousands of accounts were closed and last year Italy put the Vatican on its'white list' of states with cooperative financial institutions, ending years of mistrust and providing an endorsement of efforts by Pope Francis to clean up finances.

Moneyval, the monitoring body of the Council of Europe, has said in several evaluations that while the Vatican has made great strides in cleaning up the IOR and other financial departments, it needed to be much more aggressive in bringing cases to trial.

[Reuters] 2224.4

















Placuit Deo: Stealth Correction of Francis?

CHRISTOPHER A. FERRARA writes for Fatima Perspectives ; ' Placuit Deo, the rumored new encyclical from Pope Francis, turned out not to be an encyclical at all but rather a brief letter from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF). While providing some orthodox commentary on the necessity of grace and the sacraments for sanctification, along with a good deal of ambiguous Vatican II-speak on 'Christian salvation' - versus non-Christian 'salvation'? - the letter focuses, curiously enough, on a term Francis has consistently abused in his more or less continuous jeremiad against 'rigid' Catholics: Pelagianism.

In Evangelii Gaudium (EG), Francis infamously denounced the supposed 'self-absorbed promethean neopelagianism' of Catholics 'who ultimately trust only in their own powers and feel superior to others because they observe certain rules or remain intransigently faithful to a particular Catholic style from the past. A supposed soundness of doctrine or discipline leads instead to a narcissistic and authoritarian elitism, whereby instead of evangelizing, one analyzes and classifies others, and instead of opening the door to grace, one exhausts his or her energies in inspecting and verifying.'

There is no logical connection between Pelagianism and being 'intransigently faithful to a particular Catholic style from the past' - as if the practice of the Faith in keeping with Tradition involved a mere 'style'! Rather, the essence of Pelagianism, as the Catholic Encyclopedia explains, is found in the following propositions:

• Even if Adam had not sinned, he would have died.

• Adam's sin harmed only himself, not the human race.

• Children just born are in the same state as Adam before his fall.

• The whole human race neither dies through Adam's sin or death, nor rises again through the resurrection of Christ.

• The (Mosaic Law) is as good a guide to Heaven as the Gospel.

• Even before the advent of Christ there were men who were without sin.'

These propositions reduce to the single notion that man can achieve salvation by his own efforts in the practice of virtue, with divine grace merely providing a certain degree of assistance.

But the 'rigid' Catholics that Francis seems to see under every bed and around every corner have no confidence whatever in the ability of human effort alone to save them, which is precisely why they are so strongly attached to the doctrines and discipline of the Church, a supernatural institution founded by Christ Himself to mediate sanctifying grace to men. If anything, it would appear that in disparaging strict adherence to the doctrines and disciplines of the Church that God founded for the salvation of souls, it is Pope Francis himself who is tending to Pelagianism.

Enter Placuit Deo, which provides (along with a definition of Gnosticism) a definition of 'neo-Pelagianism' that clearly departs from the demagogic distortion that Francis has been promoting over the past five years:

'A new form of Pelagianism is spreading in our days, one in which the individual, understood to be radically autonomous, presumes to save oneself, without recognizing that, at the deepest level of being, he or she derives from God and from others. According to this way of thinking, salvation depends on the strength of the individual or on purely human structures, which are incapable of welcoming the newness of the Spirit of God'

Even this definition is a bit squishy, given that it is expressly intended to be consistent with 'the teachings of Pope Francis.' But the teachings of Francis are barely cited in the document. There are only four passing references out of 29 footnotes, one of which is to his first encyclical, Lumen Fidei, whose first draft was written by Benedict XVI not long before his mysterious abdication. There is no reference at all to the disastrous Amoris Laetitia, nor any suggestion that neo-Pelagianism involves the 'rigidity' of observant Catholics.

Tellingly, Placuit Deo's definition of Pelagianism refers to 'purely human structures,' not the doctrines and disciplines of the Holy Catholic Church. Francis, however, never used the phrase 'purely human structures' in the document Placuit Deo cites in support of its definition.Rather, in the cited document, an address to a Catholic convention in Florence, Francis referred back to his own definition in EG, wherein he denounced 'structures which give us a false sense of security, within rules which make us harsh judges, within habits which make us feel safe' - meaning, obviously, the structures, rules and 'habits' of traditional Catholicism, which he belittles as 'a particular Catholic style from the past.'

Is Placuit Deo, then, an attempt to sanitize Pope Francis' obnoxious equation of traditional Catholicism with 'promethean neopelagianism' so as to blunt rising opposition among clergy and laity (and a small number of bishops) to his reformist mania? Or, as Diane Montagna of Life Site News has put the question: 'Is new Vatican doc on neo-Pelagianism at odds with Pope's preferred pejorative?'

In introducing Placuit Deo to the press, Archbishop Luis Ladaria, S.J, Prefect of the CDF, asserted that there is 'no special reason' it is being published now. But why else would this curious document suddenly appear with barely any prior notice? If there is a better explanation, I would like to hear it.

[FP] 2224.5

















Cardinal Kasper doubles down on the big lie concerning Amoris Laetitia

CHRISTOPHER A. FERRARA writes for Fatima Perspectives: 'As faithful Catholics the world over rise in opposition to the confusion and division engendered by Amoris Laetitia (AL) - a subversive document without precedent in the 2000-year-long history of the papacy - the Modernist whose book on 'mercy' started the ball rolling for the admission of public adulterers to Holy Communion now doubles down on the Big Lie concerning AL.

In a recent interview with Patheos, Cardinal Walter Kasper repeats the deceptive claim that as heresy 'is a tenacious disagreement with formal dogma,' AL cannot in any sense be considered heretical because 'the doctrine of the indissolubility of marriage has not been called into question on Pope Francis' part!' Like the sophist he is, Kasper points to the narrow canonical definition of heresy - the obstinate, post-baptismal denial of an article of divine and Catholic faith - while ignoring the broader sense of heresy as any error against the Faith.

In this case, the error is that the Sixth Commandment's application can vary according to the 'complexity of various situations' and the 'concrete complexity of one's limits' (cf. AL 296, 303), so that conduct constituting a mortal sin for some people may not be so for others. Kasper continues to pretend that this utter moral nonsense, destructive of the entire moral order, is sound doctrine instead of an unparalleled departure from what the Church has always taught regarding the absolutely binding and exceptionless character of the negative precepts of the moral law, so John Paul II insisted in line with all of Tradition. To quote his teaching in Veritatis splendor:

'The negative precepts of the natural law are universally valid. They oblige each and every individual, always and in every circumstance. It is a matter of prohibitions which forbid a given action semper et pro semper, without exception, because the choice of this kind of behavior is in no case compatible with the goodness of the will of the acting person, with his vocation to life with God and to communion with his neighbor. It is prohibited - to everyone and in every case - to violate these precepts. They oblige everyone, regardless of the cost, never to offend in anyone, beginning with oneself, the personal dignity common to all.'

Doubling down on the Big Lie, Kasper claims that a radical break with the constant teaching of the Church that John Paul defended is actually 'development' of his teaching:

Q. Specifically speaking of the contested article 351 of Amoris laetitia regarding the admission to the Sacraments of the divorced and remarried, you affirm in your book that this article should be read in the light of the Decree of the Council of Trent on the Eucharist. For what reason?

R. - The Council of Trent says that in the case in which there is no grave sin, but venial, the Eucharist removes that sin. Sin is a complex term. It not only includes an objective principle, but there is also the intention, the person's conscience. And this needs to be examined in the internal forum - in the Sacrament of Reconciliation - if there is truly a grave sin, or perhaps a venial sin, or perhaps nothing. If it is only a venial sin, the person can be absolved and admitted to the Sacrament of the Eucharist. This already corresponds with the doctrine of Pope John Paul II and, in this sense, Pope Francis is in complete continuity with the direction opened by preceding Popes. I do not see any reason, then, to say that this is a heresy.

Here we have the hissing of a serpent, who tells people living in adultery that if only they contrive a sufficient excuse for their behavior, a priest in the confessional will 'downgrade' their objective mortal sin to a venial sin or even a petty fault and admit them to Holy Communion based on nothing more than a claim of 'conscience' in 'complex circumstances.'

This grotesque falsehood, says Kasper the lying sophist, 'corresponds with the doctrine of Pope John Paul II.' In truth, it is precisely the error John Paul II condemned in precisely the context of the demand for the admission of the divorced and 'remarried' to Holy Communion based on 'conscience,' which ignores the truth that one's conscience must be informed by the moral teaching of the Church:

Veritatis splendor:

'In order to justify these positions, some authors have proposed a kind of double status of moral truth. Beyond the doctrinal and abstract level, one would have to acknowledge the priority of a certain more concrete existential consideration.

'The latter, by taking account of circumstances and the situation, could legitimately be the basis of certain exceptions to the general rule and thus permit one to do in practice and in good conscience what is qualified as intrinsically evil by the moral law. … On this basis, an attempt is made to legitimize so-called 'pastoral' solutions contrary to the teaching of the Magisterium, and to justify a 'creative' hermeneutic according to which the moral conscience is in no way obliged, in every case, by a particular negative precept.

'No one can fail to realize that these approaches pose a challenge to the very identity of the moral conscience in relation to human freedom and God's law.'

1998 Instruction of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith:

'In other words, if the prior marriage of two divorced and remarried members of the faithful was valid, under no circumstances can their new union be considered lawful and therefore reception of the sacraments is intrinsically impossible. The conscience of the individual is bound to this norm without exception.'

It must be said in all simplicity: This entire project of undermining the Church's teaching respecting the intrinsic impossibility of public adulterers being admitted to Holy Communion, no matter what they subjectively claim 'in conscience,' is a work of the Father of Lies. And Kasper is one of the many liars the devil is employing for this work of subversion.

But, to recall the consoling words of Sister Lucia to the late Cardinal Caffarra:

'Father, a time will come when the decisive battle between the kingdom of Christ and Satan will be over marriage and the family. And those who will work for the good of the family will experience persecution and tribulation. But do not be afraid, because Our Lady has already crushed his head.'

[FP] 2224.6













Humanae Vitae


New assault on Humanae Vitae begins

E C BruggerE. CHRISTIAN BRUGGER writes for the National Catholic Register: 'Father Maurizio Chiodi, a member of the Pontifical Academy for Life, recently gave a speech at the Jesuit-run Gregorian University in Rome defending the use of contraception.

Father Chiodi's address, entitled 'Rereading Humanae Vitae in the Light of Amoris Laetitia,' was given at a conference dedicated to the 50th anniversary of the publication of Humanae Vitae (The Regulation of Birth). Does this portend a doctrinal push similar to what we've seen on the matter of Communion for the divorced and civilly remarried? If we look at the speech in the light of two other recent Vatican events, the answer is unavoidable.

The first is the revelation that Pope Francis has established a new birth-control commission on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of Humanae Vitae. The commission's charge is to 'reinterpret' the encyclical's teaching 'in the light of Amoris Laetitia.' Heading the four-man commission is Msgr. Gilfredo Marengo, a bitter critic of Paul VI's great encyclical. In 2015, in the magazine Vatican Insider, Msgr. Marengo suggested 'abandoning a conception of doctrinal patrimony of the Church as a closed system, impermeable to questions and provocations of the here and now.'

From what he said later, we see he includes within this 'closed system' the teaching of Humanae Vitae. In an address in March 2017, entitled 'Humanae Vitae and Amoris Laetitia,' Msgr. Marengo stated:

'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.'

This is what happened, he says, with Humanae Vitae: It '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.' So says the priest chosen to head the commission charged with rereading Humanae Vitae.

Second, last September, the Holy See announced that the once-great John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family was being redesigned into a new institute for 'Marriage and Family Sciences,' with the specific charge of carrying forward the reasoning of Amoris Laetitia. Its president, Msgr. Pierangelo Sequeri, is also no friend of Humanae Vitae.

Edward Pentin, the Register's Rome correspondent, recently reported that Msgr. Sequeri wrote an introduction for a new book, Amoris Laetitia: A Turning Point for Moral Theology, which argues that Amoris Laetitia represents a 'paradigm shift for all moral theology and especially in interpreting Humanae Vitae.' Msgr. Sequeri is also a member of Pope Francis' four-man commission.

Returning to Father Chiodi's 'rereading' of Humanae Vitae, the papal theologian begins by saying that although the norm against contraception taught in Humanae Vitae 'officially' remains in place, the bishops of the Church 'seem to be very embarrassed' by it, which is why we see that the 'pastoral urgency' of the contraception question 'has been diminishing.' What light, Father Chiodi asks, can Amoris Laetitia shed on the actual application of that norm?

He argues we find 'two theoretical nodes' in Chapter 8 of the document that assist us in answering this question. The first is 'the objective relevance of extenuating circumstances,' and the second is 'the subjective responsibility of conscience.' I will consider here only the first - 'circumstances.'

How do 'circumstances' help us understand the relevance of Humanae Vitae's teaching to the family-planning decisions of ordinary Catholics? We understand that sometimes it's just not possible for couples to conform their behavior to the teaching of Humanae Vitae. Many find themselves 'in the tangle of human affairs … in many difficult situations.' They struggle to see how an 'objective system of morality' applies to their concrete situation. And so, 'escaping the absolute opposition between good and evil,' they seek 'the path' that leads to the 'possible good.' Sometimes this means choosing natural family planning (NFP). But natural methods reveal a purpose that 'transcends' the methods themselves - namely, 'responsible procreation.' Therefore:

'In situations where natural methods are impossible or impracticable, other forms of responsibility need to be found. Under such 'circumstances,' responsibility requires other methods for the regulation of birth [i.e., contraception]. In these cases, the 'technological' intervention does not deny the responsibility of the generating relationship, just as a conjugal relationship that observes natural methods is not automatically responsible.'

He concludes that using contraception might be precisely what responsible procreation requires of us. Thus, in light of the higher truth to which NFP points, abandoning natural methods in favor of contraception would not be unfaithful to the magisterium because NFP was never 'an end in itself,' but, rather, a means 'to preserving the responsible quality of the sexual act,' which under such 'circumstances,' he thinks, contraceptive choices better realize.

Although he scrupulously avoids using the term, Father Chiodi's reasoning here is proportionalist through and through: If we determine that it is 'impossible or impractical' to conform our behavior to some objective moral norm taught by the Church - such as the one that prohibits 'any action which, either before, at the moment of, or after sexual intercourse, is specifically intended to prevent procreation, whether as an end or as a means' (Humanae Vitae, 14) - then we are not bound by that norm. Father Chiodi never says how we determine whether obedience to a norm is 'impossible or impractical.'

Although the cleric presents his form of reasoning as new and pastorally farsighted and a great improvement over the 'rigidity' of traditional Catholic morality, it is in fact an age-old method for justifying evildoing for the sake of achieving good - reasoning that's been rejected by the Church countless times over the centuries, beginning with St. Paul in Romans 3:8.

Pope John Paul II condemned this form of reasoning in Veritatis Splendor, precisely because it leads to the justification of actions traditionally condemned as evil by the divine laws and natural laws and so by the Church:

'Such theories are not faithful to the Church's teaching, when they believe they can justify, as morally good, deliberate choices of kinds of behavior contrary to the commandments of the divine and natural law. These theories cannot claim to be grounded in the Catholic moral tradition' (76).

[NCRegister] 2224.W7


















On Contraception, now even Wojtyla is “rigid” and “doctrinaire”

RENZO PUCCETT writes for OnePeterFive: ' The release of a book on the encyclical Humanae Vitae, which documents the influential help of the then-Archbishop of Krakow, has become an occasion for Avvenire to renew an assault on the encyclical published 50 years ago. Its objective: to bypass the ban on contraception. The strategy is to divide Blessed Paul VI (good and flexible) from Saint John Paul II (rigid and doctrinaire).

In cauda venenum [In the tail is poison]. This is what you say when the end of a discourse reveals its polemical nature which until then was hidden. I am referring to the review by Luciano Moia which appeared last Sunday [4 March 2018] in Avvenire, on the book by the Polish theologian Fr. Pavel Stanislaw Galuska published by Cantagalli entitled “Karol Wojtyla and Humanae Vitae – The Contribution of the Archbishop of Krakow and of a Group of Polish Theologians to the Encyclical of Paul VI.”

The chief editor of Avvenire focuses on just a few lines of this 550-page text, which describe among other things a letter sent from the then-Archbishop of Krakow Karol Wojtyla to Pope Paul VI in which it is suggested that the so-called “parallel magisterium” of rebelling bishops be strongly confronted. These bishops, by means of pastoral documents, ended up emptying Humanae Vitae of its contents and undermining the unity of the faith on a decisive point for the moral life of the faithful. I took great personal comfort in the fact that the narration of the reaction of the various episcopates to the encyclical of Paul VI was drawn from my work, “I veleni della contraccezione” [The Poisons of Contraception] (Edizioni Studio Domenicano), and it coincides with that which emerges from the work of the future Polish pope. In my text I spoke of the parallel magisterium as an “inverse magisterium” and thus of a truly and really “perverse magisterium”, but for dear Mr. Moia the wormtongue language of the rebel bishops denoted “respect, accompaniment, and understanding.”

In reality, presenting the pronouncements of over 40 bishops’ conferences as “declarations and applicative documents that are variously critical”, Moia creates a distorted representation, implying to the reader that all the bishops of the world were in accord in their critique of Humanae Vitae. Certainly, there were statements of the episcopates of Austria, Germany, Holland, Belgium, France, and Canada, for whose approval the activism of [Canadian] Bishop Remi de Roo was determinative (Recalled by Prefect Cardinal Ratzinger for his support for the ordination of women, in 2000 he was ordered to publicly apologize for expenditures not approved by the Vatican which created a deficit of 12 million dollars in his diocese).

On March 27, 2008, speaking in Jerusalem to the Neo-Catechumenal Way, in reference to the statements of the Bishops’ Conferences of Austria and Germany [on Humanae Vitae], Cardinal Christoph Scho¨nborn of Vienna, whom Pope Francis has called a great theologian and the best interpreter of Amoris Laetitia, said: “We ought to repent of this sin of the European episcopate which did not have the courage of Paul VI, because today we are carrying the weight of the consequences of this sin.”
Apart from the “respect, accompaniment and understanding” of which Moia writes, he is silent on the fidelity of the statements of the Bishops’ Conferences of Italy, England, and the United States; the latter was described by the former diplomat Kenneth D. Whitehead as “one of the strongest counter-cultural episcopal affirmations of Humane Vitae.” In the end Wojtyla was correct: the argument presenting contraception as a matter to be left to the conscience of married couples, caught in a supposed “conflict of duty” between their human obligations and their Christian obligations, which was invented by the Dutch bishop Willem Bekkers in 1963, permeated the statements of the various dissenting episcopates.

Such arguments were repeatedly refuted by the Magisterium, but now they have reemerged today, like theological zombies, to justify the need for sexual relationships between divorced persons and persons other than their spouse. But if they were not valid then, one does not see why such arguments ought to be valid now, when all of the accumulated empirical evidence, theological reflection, and magisterial statements [in the fifty years since Humanae Vitae] attest to their invalidity.

Where Moia wants to go with his argument becomes clear at the end of his article, when he writes: “What was the reaction of Montini to this proposal? We don’t know. But we do know that in the following ten years of his life, he spoke only four more times on the topic of Humanae Vitae. And not only did he never show any intention of tightening down on its application, but in his official discourses and interventions he never made any further reference to the natural methods of regulating fertility.”

What relevance should the presumed silence of Paul VI ought to hold, if not showing his desire not to exacerbate further a clash that was already on the point of schism? In reality the silence of the Pope was also used at the time as an argument that the teaching of the Church on contraception was doubtful, and, as they say, in dubiis libertas. In those same years the regressive Bishop Josef Reuss of Mainz issued a directive to the priests of his diocese in which he instructed them to relieve couples of the obligation to abstain from contraception because of the existing situation that the doctrine was in doubt. This was also the line of argument followed by the theologians Richard McCormick and Bernard Häring.

Pope Paul VI was well aware of the problem; he said to [Father John C. Ford, S.J.] who was his counselor: “Whoever keeps silent consents; if the Church does not prohibit it acquiesces, and the doctrine becomes probable”, and if something is probable it does not oblige.

But the doctrine was not in doubt. There were clear and clean pronouncements of the preceding magisterium, there were statements of Pius IX, Pius XII, John XXIII, there were centuries and centuries of Tradition, there was the voice of doctors of the Church and of her saints. However, to cut the margin even thinner, Paul VI himself, addressing the participants of the 52nd Congress of the Italian Society of Gynecologists and Obstetricians on October 26, 1966, had said: “The thought and the norm of the Church have not changed; they are those in force in the traditional teaching of the Church.” If today somebody wants to intentionally attribute a doctrinal significance of uncertainty to the silence of Paul VI after Humanae Vitae, they would be undertaking an intellectually fraudulent operation.

The Pope had responsibility for the unity of the Church, he was being faithful to the office of teacher and defender of the faith, he had reaffirmed the moral truth, and he chose not to reprimand forcefully the lie [of dissent]. We are dealing with extremely difficult choices at the prerogative of the Petrine office. How many times this has happened in history. We could think of the decision in 1588 of Pope Sixtus V to impose the canonical and civil penalties of homicide for those who used contraceptives or had an abortion. Only three years later, except for the case of an already-formed fetus, Gregory XIV abrogated the bull of his predecessor, restoring to contraception the nature of an act against chastity [rather than murder]. We could also cite the intransigent position of St. Pius V on the practice of prostitution in the city of Rome and contrast it with the more tolerant position of other popes who were also saints.

On the other hand, it was the same Blessed Paul VI who was sharply critical of permissiveness and of the intransigence of evil dwelling within the Church: “We were perhaps too weak and imprudent in this attitude, to which the school of modern Christianity invites us: the recognition of the profane world in its rights and values […] We have gone above and beyond in our conformism to the mentality and customs of the profane world,” he said during the general audience of September 21, 1973. Already then, immediately after the publication of Humanae Vitae, the theologians of dissent abandoned the argument of dissent in order to brandish the argument of the non-infallibility of the encyclical, an argument which Moia resuscitates. If Humanae Vitae is not infallible, then it is fallible, but if it is fallible it is not irreformable, and so therefore it is reformable and thus ought to be reformed – this is the line of thought followed.

Commenting on the request of Wojtyla for a pronouncement of the Pope which would declare Humanae Vitae “infallible and irreformable”, Moia writes: “Is it possible that Wojtyla was ignorant that it was the same Paul VI who had ordered Msgr. Ferdinando Lambruschini – dean of the chair of moral theology of the Lateran University and then Archbishop of Perugia – to explain in the press conference presenting the encyclical that the text ought not to be considered either infallible or irreformable? Evidently not.” It is gratifying that Moia has discovered himself to be an admirer of Msgr. Lambruschini. If so, he ought to have no difficulty accepting also this one of his teachings: “None of the instances of the natural moral law can be sacrificed to a vague ‘pastorality’”, which he takes into account in his articles on morality (F. Lambruschini, Problemi della Humanae vitae, Queriniana, Brescia 1968, 135). It would be good now to specify the exact nature of the definitiveness of the encyclical and the theologically controversial material it contains, and also to confirm whether Paul VI himself actually ordered Msgr. Lambruschini in such a way (personally I do not know the source from which Moia gets this information).

Fr. Ermenegildo Lio wrote a powerful scientific essay edited by Libreria Editrice Vaticana and approved by John Paul II in which he demonstrates the presence of the necessary criteria [in Humanae Vitae] to consider it a certain and definitive act of the Magisterium. If the hundreds of pages of this study might discourage him, Moia could just get a copy of this month’s Timone, where he will be able to learn in a synthetic manner from the article of Fr. Carbone why Humanae Vitae is infallible.

But even admitting that these theologians could be in error, this does not change one comma of the fact that the norms on contraception are part of the definitive Magisterium. In an intervention published in L’Osservatore Romano on September 4, 1968, the theologian Rosario Gagnebet wrote: “When one calls upon the non-infallible character of this document in order to negate the certainty of the teaching it contains, it seems that one is forgetting that there are many certain teachings in Catholic doctrine which fall outside of those which have been the object of an infallible proposition.” And again in L’Osservatore Romano on January 5, 1969, Karol Wojtyla wrote: “It seems that throughout all of the arguments and appeals over the encyclical, full of dramatic tension, the words of the Master come to us: ‘By your perseverance you will save your souls’ (Luke 21:19). Because in the end this is what we are dealing with.” Does Luciano Moia really think that Gagnebet and Wojtyla would have written these statements in disobedience and behind the back of Paul VI?

Originally published at La Nuova Bussola Quotidiania. Translated by Giuseppe Pellegrino


[1Pr5] 2224.HV2




















United Nations


UN logo


Holy See defends children's rights before UN Human Rights Council

THE HOLY SEE'S Permanent Observer to the UN, Archbishop Ivan Jurkovic, presents a third statement to the 37th Session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva, in which he defends the rights of children. This statement follows one which affirmed the role of culture in society and one covering freedom of religion or belief.

Responding to the High Commissioner's Report on the protection of children's rights in humanitarian situations, Archbishop Jurkovic says that the Holy See believes that while there has been some progress, 'we are deeply concerned by the fact that, in 2017, around 535 million children were affected by humanitarian disasters; this represents one child out of four in the world.'

The growing number of humanitarian situations - war, local crises, natural disasters - affect 'too many people, especially our children, our future.' As a result, a growing number of children are refugees, migrants, internally displaced, orphaned. Especially those living in the poorest parts of the world are trapped in the most vulnerable situations, others become victims to the unscrupulous-abused, smuggled, trafficked, suffer the loss of organs, and recruited as soldiers. Archbishop Jurkovic says that the Holy See wants to emphasize that 'the dignity of our children is at risk and that the best interests of the child should be a priority within every humanitarian situation.' Such experiences suffered during childhood affect their survival, 'their mental, social and environmental development as well as their physical well-being.'

But the rights necessary for the development of these children can only be enjoyed if they are 'registered at birth,' the Archbishop noted. 'Prevention is the best medicine, and this begins with access to citizenship, health, education and promoting a culture of respect of human rights and human dignity of every child.' Although the legal framework for the protection of children exists, 'it just needs to be applied.' Therefore, the Holy See 'calls on the international community, governments, civil society, NGOs and all relevant stakeholders to collaborate closely to protect children.' When it comes to children, the Archbishops emphasizes that their best interest should always be the 'guiding principles in all circumstances and without any conditions.' Their safety, and their emotional and physical well-being is the responsibility of every 'citizen of the world.'

Archbishop Jurkovic concludes by quoting Pope Francis: 'A people that does not take care of its elderly, its children and its youth have no future, because it abuses both memory and promise.'

[ICN] 2224.UN1




















UNESCO pushes controversial sex-education rejected by the General Assembly

STEFANO GENNARINI, J.D., reports: 'UN staffers are making bold claims about the effectiveness of their latest efforts to initiate the world’s children to the mysteries of sex, even though their controversial sexuality education programming has been rejected by the UN General Assembly.

“Sexuality education cannot be just a one off. It has to start early and continue throughout the education cycle. It has to do with behavior, consent, how you want to have sex, and with whom,” said Christopher Castle, UNESCO Chief of Section for Health and Education, during an event at the Population Council in New York.

Castle joked about presenting the UN education agency’s updated guidelines on sexuality education to 40 UN member states the previous day. He said comprehensive sexuality education remains a “hot-button” issue for many of them, but that he was, overall, encouraged.

“In the past it was very much we who care about sexual and reproductive health and rights reacting to pushback to conservative forces. Now I am observing more balanced responses in how member states fall on this,” the UNESCO staffer said.

His pitch for comprehensive sexuality education predictably involved a mixture of arguments, some catered to socially conservative countries, others to social progressives.

He extolled the virtues of comprehensive sexuality education because “they do increase knowledge.”

“We try not just to talk about the risks of sex, and present sexuality with a positive approach,” he explained.

The UNESCO official denied it would lead to increased sexual activity and risk taking, saying this is a “common misperception.” At the same time, he admitted “there are challenges in measuring the impact of comprehensive sexuality education.” In fact, the UNESCO guidelines show less than half of sexuality education programs show any positive results in delayed sexual debut, fidelity, and correct use of condoms.

Despite the lack of evidence that comprehensive sexuality education works, Castle insisted that “programs must be implemented faithfully” and “delivered fully as intended” to get results.

Noting the increased uptake around the world, he said, “They may call it different things, family health education, life-skills education, sexual and reproductive health education. That is not important. What we do care about is the content.”

Castle seemed afraid that programming would be diluted as it is translated into different national contexts. Yet he made the case for integrating sexuality education with health programming as many of the socially progressive countries that fund UNESCO want.

“We cannot just provide knowledge without having youth-friendly sexual and reproductive health services available. We are going to create demand by doing comprehensive sexuality education. So, these services have to be available,” he explained. He pointed to target 4.7 of the 2030 Agenda, on which progress will be measured through an indicator about comprehensive sexuality education.

Castle described himself as an alumnus of the Population Council, having worked there before joining UNESCO. Nicole Haberland, who works on sexuality education for the Population Council expressed her gratitude to Castle.

“Anxiety around sex runs deep and wide. It helps to point to UN documents. It persuades people that it will not lead to more and risky sex,” she said.

Castle said the UNESCO guidance is not a curriculum. He recommended the Population Council’s “It’s All One” curriculum among others. Both Castle and Haberland described the updated UNESCO guidance as an effort to align with “It’s All One.”






















News from around the world


Australia Archbishop mocks Chinese Cardinal Zen: He should 'smile once in a while'

DOROTHY CUMMINGS McLEAN reports for LifeSiteNews: 'An Australian archbishop has angered Catholics by criticizing two cardinals who have been outspoken advocates of orthodoxy.

Mark Coleridge, Archbishop of Brisbane, tweeted that he wished Cardinal Zen of Hong Kong, who has been impassioned in his support of the persecuted underground Catholic Church in China, would smile.

'Things can be tough in China, I know,' he conceded, 'but I just wish the Cardinal would smile once in a while.'

Archbishop Coleridge was reacting to a photo of Zen on an article about the cardinal's strong opposition to the Vatican's impending deal with China's Communist government.

The response to the archbishop was swift and severe.

'• Things can be tough being so snide about fellow Catholics,' tweeted one critic, posting decidedly grumpy photos of the Australian prelate, 'but I just wish the archbishop would smile once in awhile.'

• Urge Pope Francis to stand with persecuted Catholics in China. Sign the petition here!

• Another tweet demanded to know how the archbishop dared to 'trivialise' Zen's worries 'How dare you trivialise the matter?' the poster demanded. 'Millions of Chinese Catholics have endured 70 [years] of persecution and all you can say is this. The tweet is beneath contempt [and] you own the man an apology.'

• 'It's easy to smile and laugh it up when you're safe,' observed another.

• 'Can't believe I'm reading this from an archbishop,' wrote a particularly angry reader. 'And you wonder why the hierarchy has no credibility? Why youth are leaving the Church? It's because of this absolutely spineless, cowardly behavior towards those who wish to preserve the faith. Disgusting!'

Coleridge's tweet was 'liked' by liberal theologian Massimo Faggioli, a choice that was not lost on readers.

The Archbishop of Brisbane also courted controversy last week when he tweeted an observation that Cardinal Robert Sarah, the African author of The Power of Silence, 'talks and writes a lot':

'With respect, it strikes me that for a man committed to 'le pouvoir du silence' His Eminence speaks and writes a lot…' he wrote.

Coleridge was rewarded with the observation that few Australian clergy, 'particularly in Brisbane,' were fit to clean Cardinal Sarah's shoes.

Published in April 2017, Cardinal Sarah's The Power of Silence is still among the top thirty Catholic books on the Amazon bestseller list. His book God or Nothing: A Conversation on Faith was published in 2015 and is still among the top 25 religious biographies on the Amazon list.

Sarah, who is the Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, has been arguing for a greater attention to holiness at Mass and reverence for the Blessed Sacrament of the Eucharist. Most recently, he warned that elements of the Catholic Church in the western world are betraying the faith.

The Archbishop of Brisbane was among those bishops advocating a reform agenda at the Vatican's Synod on the Family. In 2016, he criticized Cardinal Raymond Burke and the other prelates asking Pope Francis to clarify Amoris Laetitia. These prelates, said Coleridge, are seeking a 'false clarity.'

'At times at the synod I heard voices that sounded very clear and certain but only because they never grappled with the real question or never dealt with the real facts. So there's a false clarity that comes because you don't address reality, and there's a false certainty that can come for the same reason.'

When Amoris Laetitia was promulgated, Coleridge tweeted that it 'subverts absolutism.'

[LSN] 2224.9


















Belgium Cardinal Sarah: 'I denounce the crisis of faith of a betraying clergy'

MARCO TOSATTI writes for La Nuova Bussola Quotidiana / OnePeterFive: 'In the last few days Cardinal Robert Sarah, Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship, was in Belgium for a presentation on his book, 'God or Nothing.' He responded to certain tendencies to modify Catholic morality, in particular in regard to marriage and the family, as well as the teaching on life. May certain of his words be read as a response to the recent remarks of German Cardinal Reinhard Marx, of the Vice-President of the German Bishops' Conference Franz Josef Bode, and of Cardinal Christoph Schönborn of Vienna?

It seems the answer is yes. Speaking to a church full of people, including the Apostolic Nuncio Cardinal De Kesel, Mayor Woluwé-Saint Pierre, and Abbot Philippe Mawet, in charge of French-speaking pastoral ministry, who had criticized Sarah's book a few days earlier in an article in the left-leaning daily Libre Belgique, the cardinal called out the ideologies and pressure groups that 'with powerful financial means and ties to the media, attack the natural purpose of marriage and commit themselves to destroying the family unit.'

But the cardinal from Guinea, speaking in one of the most devastated local Churches of all of Europe, was not afraid to include tough words directed towards his brothers in the episcopate. 'Some high-ranking prelates, above all those coming from opulent nations, are working to cause modifications to Christian morality with regard to the absolute respect for life from conception until natural death, the question of the divorced and civilly remarried, and other problematic family situations. These 'guardians of the faith' however ought not to lose sight of the fact that the problem posed by the fragmentation of the ends of marriage is a problem of natural morality.' But the cardinal did not stop there. He continued calmly: 'The great derivations became manifest when some prelates or Catholic intellectuals began to say or write 'a green light for abortion, a green light for euthanasia.' Now, from the moment that Catholics abandon the teaching of Jesus and the Magisterium of the Church, they contribute to the destruction of the natural institution of marriage as well as the family and it is now the entire human family which finds itself fractured by this new betrayal on the part of priests.'

In this year in which the 50th anniversary of the encyclical Humanae Vitae is being celebrated, without making any effort to hide or water down his words, the cardinal spoke quite strongly: 'The Church needs to turn to the encyclical Humanae Vitae of Paul VI as well as to the teachings of John Paul II and Benedict XVI on these vital questions for the human race. Pope Francis himself remains in the same line with his predecessors when he emphasizes the union between the Gospel of love and the Gospel of peace. The Church needs to affirm with strength and without ambiguity the Magisterial weight of all of this teaching, display clearly its continuity [with the Tradition] and protect this treasure from the predators of this world without God [in which we live].

In an interview given to Cathobel, Cardinal Sarah testified that the Church today ought to face up to great questions, and above all to 'her fidelity to Jesus, to his Gospel, to the teaching which she has always received from the first popes, from the councils…and this is not evident, because the Church desires to adapt herself to the cultural context, to modern culture.'

And then on faith: 'Faith has become lacking, not only on the level of the people of God but also among those responsible for the Church, sometimes we can ask ourselves if we really have faith.' Cardinal Sarah recalled the episode of the [priest who omitted the] Creed at Mass, Fr. Fredo Olivero, and concluded: 'I think that today there may be a great crisis of faith and also a great crisis of our personal relationship with God.'

And on Europe? 'Not only is the West losing its soul, but it is committing suicide, because a tree without roots is condemned to death. I think that the West cannot renounce its roots, which created its culture and its values.' The cardinal continued: 'There are chilling things happening in the West. I think that a parliament which authorizes the death of an innocent baby, without defense, is committing a grave act of violence against the human person. When abortion is imposed, especially on nations in the developing world, saying that if they do not accept it they will no longer receive aid, it is an act of violence. And it is no surprise. When God is abandoned, man is also abandoned; there is no longer a clear vision of who man is. This is a great anthropological crisis in the West. And it leads to people being treated like objects.'

[Originally published at La Nuova Bussola Quotidiana. Translated by Giuseppe Pellegrino].

[1P5] 2224.10


















Canada 'Absolutely surreal': Student mob smashes window in protest against Dr. Jordan Peterson

A MOB disrupted a presentation by bestselling author and freedom-of-speech hero Jordan Peterson this week.

Dr. Peterson and Professor Bruce Pardy addressed a packed lecture hall at Queen's University on the subject of free speech. Their presentation was entitled 'The Rising Tide of Compelled Speech in Canada.'

Early in the lecture, two women invaded the building and walked across the stage holding a banner reading 'Freedom to smash bigotry.' In the balcony at the back of the hall, a male student shouted abuse at the stage. All three students were roundly booed by the audience, which was sprayed with an unidentified liquid by the women when they left they hall.



Outside, a mob of dozens shouted slogans and obscenities and banged on the doors and windows of Grant Hall. They kept up the racket for the 90-minute length of the forum, stopping briefly only after a woman broke one of the stained glass windows of the historic Victorian Romanesque-style building.

'Mark my words, that's the sound of the barbarians pounding at the gates,' Peterson told the audience.

The mob blocked the front and back doors of the hall with trash and recycling bins, forcing the audience to leave via an adjacent hall, where they ran a gauntlet of protesters screaming 'Shame on you.' One woman quipped, 'Lock them in and burn it down' to the cheers of the other protestors.

Police were called to the scene.

Afterward, Peterson posted several clips of the protest on Twitter, telling a follower that the speaking engagement was 'absolutely surreal.'

'The mob neglected to bring torches and pitchforks, but the sentiment was there: 'Lock them in and burn it down,'' he wrote.

Peterson identified one protestor in particular as the worst of the disrupters.

'This individual (Jonathan Shepherd) was the worst of them all at Queen's, accosting us afterward on our way to the parking lot, commandeering the event at the beginning, yelling in the forum, cursing and swearing … Turns out he has a history of these things.'

Shepherd has been removed from other Queen's University events, including presentations by Conservative Party leadership candidates Kevin O'Leary and Kellie Leitch.

The student-activist told the Queen's University Journal that he was impressed by the turnout.

'There is a lot of commitment out here for trans rights and for shutting down the conspiratorial hate speech (sic) of Jordan Peterson,' he told the Journal. 'The protest has been successful in letting people know that even if we didn't stop him from taking, we've let it be known that we are opposed to him speaking.'

[LSN] 2224.11















Canada Government opposed to capital punishment, but starts euthanising prisoners

IN WHAT may be a world first, a prisoner in Canada has been 'helped to die'. CBC News reports that to date, three inmates of Canadian prisons have been approved for 'medical assistance in dying (MAID)' and that the first documented case of a federal inmate receiving MAID occurred recently, with two correctional officers helping to escort the inmate to the hospital where the procedure took place.

The cases emerged in a letter from Correctional Investigator Ivan Zinger to acting Correctional Service Canada Commissioner Anne Kelly, in which he urged for more 'compassionate' parole options and a ban on medically assisted death in prisons.

He said that new guidelines brought in on November 29, 2017 allow the prison system to act as a 'facilitator or enabler' of death, breaching the system's legal and ethical obligations. Mr Zinger condemned the policy, arguing that terminally ill inmates should be given conditional release on 'humanitarian and compassionate' grounds.

Targeting the vulnerable

Writing in MercatorNet, Michael Cook pointed out that prisoners must be the amongst most vulnerable people of all possible candidates for euthanasia. 'Their surroundings seem purpose-made to inspire despair and promote groupthink. Their custodians benefit from their deaths by cutting costs. They are already being punished by restricting the exercise of their autonomy.'

Dr Anthony McCarthy of SPUC commented, 'Anyone concerned to uphold the inherent human dignity of prisoners cannot fail to be concerned that the CSC deems it acceptable to send prisoners to voluntarily kill themselves with the assistance of medics. 'Assisted Dying' legislation has, in places like Belgium and the Netherlands, quickly expanded to encompass depressed and mentally ill people. Prisons have no shortage of such people. Already we have seen in Belgium prisoners killed by euthanasia having their organs taken. At a time when governments such as Canada's have trumpeted their compassion and opposition to capital punishment it is telling that there is so little concern for prisoners' dignity in this area.'

[SPUC] 2224.12



















China Government creates machine to spy on, rate citizens trustworthiness'

THE CHINESE COMMUNIST GOVERNMENT is poised to become what one critic is calling the 'nightmare of the world's first truly totalitarian state' with the rollout of a nationwide system that rates the 'trustworthiness' of its 1.4 billion citizens.

China's 'Social Credit System' is set to become mandatory for all Chinese citizens and businesses by 2020.

Citizens who have a high trustworthy rating will be able to partake in the benefits of society, including banking, travel, healthcare, etc. Those with low ratings will be shamed and excluded.

The program, which is still confined to pilot projects in a few Chinese regions and cities like Shanghai, will collect online data, ranging from Uber reservations to comments on social media, to rate citizens integrity' and reward or punish them accordingly.

According to the Chinese communist government's 'Planning Outline for the Construction of a Social Credit System (2014 - 2020),' the monitoring system will focus on honesty in government affairs, commercial integrity, social integrity, and judicial integrity. The aim of the program is 'to raise [citizens'] awareness of integrity and the level of trustworthiness in Chinese society.'

According to Meg Jing Zeng of Queensland University of Technology, the credit of the 'Social Credit System', or xinyong, is a 'core tenet of Confucian ethics.' Originally meaning 'honesty' and 'trustworthiness', xinyong now denotes 'financial creditworthiness' as well.

The plan, which was first proposed in 2007, was ostensibly meant to regulate China's new socialist-capitalist economy, which is plagued by cheating, counterfeit goods, problems with food safety, and dishonored contracts. However, the plan has been gradually extended to include other aspects of daily life, including personal habits, opinions and friendships.

Zeng writes that the goal of the pilot schemes is to create a standardized system of rewards and punishment. Some schemes have a 'points system,' in which participants begin with 100 points, and then win or lose points, depending on their social behavior. For example, a participant loses points if he neglects to cancel a reservation to a restaurant before his no-show, or is caught jaywalking. However, he wins points if he does a good deed, like donating blood.

Rewards to citizens with 'high social credit' have included discounts on transportation and shorter waits at hospitals. However, citizens with 'low social credit' have found themselves unable to purchase airline tickets, get passports, or reserve any but the least comfortable seats on trains. They have also found their citizen identity document photograph displayed on digital screens as a form of public shaming.

If that weren't troubling enough, a citizen's social credit score can be lowered by associating online with people who themselves have low scores.

'What we have now in China is the nightmare of the world's first truly totalitarian state,' Steve Mosher told LifeSiteNews.

Urge Pope Francis to stand with persecuted Catholics in China.Sign the petition here!

Mosher, the president of the Population Research Institute, is a frequent guest on EWTN's 'The World Over' as an expert on Asian affairs. His latest book Bully of Asia: Why China's Dream is the New Threat to World Order is currently third in the 'China' section of the Amazon bestseller list.

'The Left has always said that true totalitarianism is impossible to achieve because there are never enough minders,' said Mosher. 'That's no longer true.'

Thanks to surveillance cameras on every street corner and to Chinese citizens' reliance on electronic devices in shopping, bill-paying and communications, they have never been easier for their government to watch.

'A lot of people in China don't use money anymore,' Mosher explained. 'They use their phones. The Chinese government monitors all phones, everything electronic.'

The dark beauty of the new system is that residents of the People's Republic of China, by operating online, are 'self-reporting' on where they go, what they buy, and--on social media--who they know and what they think.

'Your social [credit] score goes up if you say good things about the regime,' said Mosher. 'Your social score goes down if you say bad things about the regime.'

According to the expert, the Chinese government has a seat on the board of every social media company in China. It also owns one percent of the stock of each company, and although that percentage seems small, it is the government board member who is in control. Any wrong move by the company, Mosher said, 'and he can shut you down.'

Mosher thinks that while the non-political types won't mind that the government knows all about them, life will certainly become much more difficult for dissidents. For the time being, they can use cash to evade detection, but when the Social Credit System becomes mandatory, people who try to stay 'in the dark' won't be able to do anything in a financial sense.

'Is it now ever going to be possible for the Chinese people to organize a demonstration like Tiananmen Square?' he wondered. 'It's hard to see how dissidents can get ahead of the government.'

'The cyber walls are closing in.'

[LSN] 2224.13
















Germany Speakers at bishops' meeting: Polish in 'identity crisis,' insisting on 'exclusion'

DR MAIKE HICKSON reports for OnePeterFive: 'LifeSiteNews reported a few days ago the inspiring piece of news that in Poland, 140,000 Catholics signed a petition to their bishops asking them to protect their teaching 'from German errors.' At the same time, the German bishops had their spring assembly, during which they invited speakers who described the Polish Catholics as understandably 'backward' due to their own Communist history and separation from the West and its ongoing discussions.

Let us first consider the affirming report about the strong traditional faith of the Polish Catholics. As LifeSiteNews wrote (emphasis added):

'Over 140,000 Poles have signed a petition asking the nation's bishops to defend Catholic teaching on marriage in the wake of the Pope's controversial exhortation Amoris Laetitia.

'Polonia Semper Fidelis, a group sponsored by Krakow's Father Piotr Skarga Institute, posted the petition in January 2018, asking Archbishop Stanis?aw G?decki, president of the Polish Bishops Conference, to preserve the faith in Poland from the 'German errors.'

'Specifically it calls on the bishops to affirm the indissolubility of marriage and the inadmissibility of divorced-and-remarried Catholics to the sacraments.

'The letter warns that the problematic interpretations of Amoris Laetitia, promulgated especially by the German bishops, add to the immense confusion already faced by believers in the midst of today's relativistic culture.

This initiative comes at a time when the Polish Bishops' Conference is in the middle of writing up its own statement concerning Amoris Laetitia, thus certainly supporting an orthodox approach to this whole matter.

The recent German initiative of hosting certain outside speakers during their spring assembly - in Ingolstadt to address some 'tensions' with Poland (as well as Hungary) - might also have to be seen in light of the current discussion about Amoris Laetitia in Poland.

According to a 21 February report of the German bishops' news site, Katholisch.de, the German bishops listened to the opinions of Tomás Halík, Czech professor of sociology in Prague, and of the Hungarian expert in religious studies András Máté-Tóth. Halík is one of the two organizers of the progressivist Pro Pope Francis initiative, which collected more than 70,000 signatures in support of Pope Francis and his reform agenda. Máté-Tóth is also a signatory.

During their talks, both non-German speakers made it clear that there exist strong differences between Germany, or the West, and some of the Eastern European countries, such as Poland and Hungary, when it comes to topics such as immigration and marriage. Halík, according to Katholisch.de, said that while populist movements are a global phenomenon, they might be further strengthened in Eastern Europe by 'a cultural and psychological crisis of identity following the fall of Communism.'

Katholisch.de continues, saying such differences are to be seen especially with the Polish bishops when dealing with the papal document Amoris Laetitia: 'While the German Bishops' Conference subsequently admitted the remarried divorcees [sic] in individual cases to Holy Communion, the Polish bishops insist upon the heretofore practiced exclusion [sic] of this group of persons.'

The report adds (emphasis added):

'These opposing theological conceptions concerning marriage and family, as the Hungarian expert in religious studies András Máté-Tóth explained, stem from the fact that the Communist past of the former Eastern Bloc states has delayed the process of discussion which took place within the Church. In the churches of Western Europe, such a discussion has already taken place after the Second Vatican Council in the 1960s, whereas in the churches of Middle and East Europe, it only started after the decline of Communism in 1990, according to the professor from the University of Szeged[, Hungary].

It is important to note here that Katholisch.de reports on these speeches uncritically and that it does not report that there was any objection against such claims coming from any of the German bishops present. We remind our readers in this context that in 2015, this same website roused a controversy by publishing an article by one of its regular contributors who claimed that the Church in Africa is growing 'because the people there are socially detached and do not have anything else but the Faith,' because people's educational level is 'low,' and because people 'accept simple answers to difficult questions of Faith.' (While the author of this article, Björn Odendahl, later made a sort of an explanation - without withdrawing his article - the damage was done.)

Both non-German speakers at that spring meeting, however, stressed that dialogue is necessary, and one of them stressed that 'the German position in this question' need not become the measure of all things. During the German bishops' discussions, it was highlighted by Archbishop Ludwig Schick that one could learn from the Polish Catholics with regard to their popular devotions - 'for example, the Marian devotions,' which have gotten lost nearly altogether in Germany.

Poland and Hungary are the two Eastern European countries strongly opposed to the aggressive and permissive immigration policies stemming mainly from German chancellor Angela Merkel. The Catholic Church in Germany has aligned herself completely with Angela Merkel's agenda, thus distancing herself from any political movements in Germany that try to resist the massive immigration from non-European and non-Christian nations. The German bishops have lined up with Pope Francis in this matter, just as they have done with regard to the question of the 'remarried' divorcés and their access to the sacraments.

It seems that the neighboring countries of Germany and Poland might be experiencing a clash of two different religious cultures within the Catholic Church - the one orthodox, the other progressivist - made all the clearer and more intense due to the geographical proximity of these nations' respective Catholic citizens.

May the Blessed Mother be the protectress of those - in both countries - who try to protect and defend Christ's teaching on marriage and the family.

[1P5] 2224.14


















Germany Cardinal Brandmüller on the bishops' new 'wholly dishonest ploy'

DR, MAIKE HICKSON reports for OnePeterFive: 'In the wake of Cardinal Gerhard Müller's recent strong rebuttal of the German bishops' decision to admit Protestant spouses of Catholics, in individual cases, to Holy Communion, it is now Cardinal Walter Brandmüller who takes his own stance with regard to this new episcopal step, calling the German bishops' referral to 'individual cases' a 'salami tactic' and a 'wholly dishonest ploy.' The cardinal also speaks of the danger of 'taking rules for situations of existential emergency and applying them to normal life,' and he calls such an approach a 'wicked trick.'

Armin Schwibach, Rome Correspondent for the Austrian news website Kath.net, published today, on 6 March, an article about the theologically doubtful approach of the German bishops to the question of intercommunion. In his report, he relates comments made by Cardinal Walter Brandmüller - the former President of the Pontifical Committee for Historical Sciences - in a recent interview with him. The German cardinal, once more, finds some strong words about the doings of the German Bishops' Conference, thus helping Catholics to see clearly their methods and the insufficient theological foundation of their new initiative. His comments might also be of help in the context of the larger discussions in the Church ever since Pope Francis, in 2015, had opened up himself permissively with regard to individual Protestant spouses receiving Holy Communion.

Cardinal Brandmüller first states that it is important to discern what is meant when we speak about the 'Church.' Is this 'a company to help make better the world? An NGO for aiding people in life?' Answering these questions himself, he says that 'the 'Church' is a reality' which does not think in these terms. 'The Church is a work of God, she is the visible, experienced form in which the Risen Christ continues His salvific work in the world.' After defining the word 'Church,' the German cardinal also defines the word 'last supper' or 'communion': some might think of a meal, of hospitality and more. However, 'Eucharist, Communion in the Catholic and Orthodox sense means something completely different.' Here Cardinal Brandmüller reminds us of the transsubstantiation of bread and wine into Body and Blood of Christ. It is about 'the truly present Christ in the visible form of bread and wine,' he explains.

Thus, Holy Communion in this sense means 'that the redeemed man unites himself with Christ present in this mystery.' Because of this, says Brandmüller, is it important to keep in mind the warning of St. Paul not to eat and drink the body and blood of Christ to one's own damnation. 'This needs to be kept in mind when speaking about [a laxer] case-to-case admittance to Communion.'

Cardinal Brandmüller then makes it very clear what he thinks of the German bishops' new document explaining their new approach to Communion for Protestant spouses: 'If now the document of the German bishops speaks about individual cases in which this may be possible, then this is in and of itself only a tactical step toward general intercommunion with non-Catholics.' [emphasis added] The German cardinal adds, 'one also calls such an approach 'salami tactics.' And: constant dripping wears down the stone. It is a wholly dishonest ploy, in order to get to the true goal.'

Cardinal Brandmüller also rejects the German bishops' claim that those Protestant spouses should be given access to Holy Communion because of their 'Eucharistic hunger.' He calls this expression 'a case that is construed with quite some effort,' and it is 'an embarrassing melodramatic set up,' yes, simply 'sob-stuff.' He comments, saying that 'a Christian who truly yearns for Holy Communion and who knows that there is no Eucharist without the Church and no Church without the Eucharist, will ask for admittance into the Catholic Church. Anything else would be doubtful and dishonest.' The Church, he adds, is not a 'self-service shop' where one may pick and chose according to one's own desires. 'Here, it is about everything or nothing!' exclaims the cardinal.

Cardinal Brandmüller also discusses the German bishops' reference to Code of Canon Law 844 § 3 and 4 which speak about emergency situations, in which an Orthodox Catholic (§ 3) or a Christian from other denominations (§ 4) may have recourse to the Church's Sacraments when there is an imminent danger of death or a situation of imprisonment, and only in the case that that the individual Christian 'is disposed in the right way,' which means 'to be free from mortal sin and to have the honest desire to receive the Sacrament,' according to the cardinal. He also repeats his question as to why such a person 'who fulfills those conditions, and who is not in an emergency situation, should not simply ask to be admitted to the Church.'

[1P5] 2224.15.



















Honduras Former seminarians allege grave sexual misconduct by bishop

EDWARD PENTIN reports for the National Catholic Register: 'The Register has obtained the text of two testimonies, submitted by former seminarians to a Vatican investigator, detailing allegations of serious sexual misconduct by Auxiliary Bishop Juan José Pineda Fasquelle of the Archdiocese of Tegucigalpa, Honduras.

The content of the testimonies, along with previously known allegations of sexual misconduct by the bishop and additional information provided to the Register by sources within Honduras, has reinforced widespread existing concerns about the conduct of Bishop Pineda.

These concerns are heightened by the fact that Bishop Pineda has been in charge of the archdiocese since early January, while its archbishop, top papal adviser Cardinal Oscar Andrés Rodriguez Maradiaga of Tegucigalpa, undergoes chemotherapy treatment in Houston, Texas, for prostate cancer.

The new information has also renewed questions about why Pope Francis has not taken any action with respect to a report submitted by the Vatican investigator, which reportedly has been in the Holy Father's hands since May of last year.

Some of the findings of the apostolic visit to the archdiocese were disclosed Dec. 21 by Italy's L'Espresso newspaper. The investigation was carried out at the Pope's request by retired Argentine Bishop Alcides Jorge Pedro Casaretto in May 2017, and addressed allegations of serious financial mismanagement within the archdiocese, as well as sexual misconduct allegations involving Bishop Pineda.

L'Espresso reported that Cardinal Maradiaga may have been involved in mismanaging Church funds, and may also have accepted hundreds of thousands of dollars from the Catholic University of Tegucigalpa. The article said that Cardinal Maradiaga is being accused of investing more than $1.2 million in some London financial companies, including Leman Wealth Management. Some of that money has now vanished, it said. Bishop Pineda is also tied to some, but not all, of the alleged financial irregularities within the archdiocese.

The L'Espresso report, which focused primarily on elements of the financial misconduct allegations that were communicated to Bishop Casaretto, was strongly denounced immediately after its publication by Cardinal Maradiaga, who serves as the head of the C-9 Council of Cardinals advising the Pope regarding Vatican reform.

The cardinal told Catholic News Agency that the L'Espresso report says 'half-truths, that are in the end worse lies,' and that they were attacks against him personally that were intended to undermine the Pope's reforms. 'I will keep serving [those reforms] as long as the Holy Father wishes so,' he said.

Cardinal Maradiaga also said Dec. 26, on Honduran Church television outlet Suyapa TV, that Pope Francis had telephoned him to say he was 'sorry for all the evil they have done against you,' and asked the cardinal not to worry.

However, Cardinal Maradiaga's vigorous rejection of L'Espresso's reporting did not directly reference the sexual misconduct allegations made against his auxiliary bishop, although he did comment that Bishop Pineda himself had 'asked the Holy Father for an apostolic visit, in order to clear his name.'

The Seminarians' Testimonies

The two former seminarians testified about events that allegedly occurred earlier this decade, during a period when Bishop Pineda taught at the archdiocesan seminary.

According to the first former seminarian's testimony to Bishop Casaretto, Bishop Pineda 'attempted to have sexual relations … without my authorization, during the period I was in service with him. In the night he came close to me and touched my intimate parts and chest, I tried to stop him, on several occasions I got out of bed and went out. Sometimes I went to the Blessed Sacrament to pray to ask God that that should stop happening.'

But, the former seminarian stated, Bishop Pineda 'never respected what I told him, not to touch me.'

After being repeatedly reproached for his advances, the first seminarian testified, Bishop Pineda 'started acting weird with me and kept away from me, since he did not get what he wanted. And over time he looked for ways to affect me [i.e. cause me trouble].'

The second former archdiocesan seminarian testified that he witnessed firsthand an improper relationship between Bishop Pineda and a third seminarian, during a period when all three men were undertaking pastoral work together.

'The pastoral work was very normal until a strange situation between the bishop and [the third seminarian] began to be seen, even sleeping in the same room. One night we worked until late the bishop invited me to sleep with them. I was expecting it to be in a separate room, however we slept in the same room. In the night the bishop behaved in a strange way ... When it was early morning he tried to abuse me, he wanted to put his leg on me and his hand also. I immediately reacted and pushed him away. The next day everything was normal for him, pretending that he had done that last night while asleep.'

Subsequently, according to the second former seminarian's testimony, Bishop Pineda undertook a series of punitive actions against him that defamed his reputation and culminated with his expulsion from the archdiocesan seminary.

'I therefore beg the Holy See that justice should be done with this bishop who abuses authority and who has a serious moral problem,' the ex-seminarian stated.

Pattern of Misconduct?

According to two other credible sources within Honduras, both of whom requested anonymity because of fear of reprisals if their identities were disclosed, the misconduct alleged in the two seminarians' testimonies was similar to a pattern of homosexual actions undertaken by Bishop Pineda with priests, other seminarians and other individuals.

One of the Register's sources, an archdiocesan official, said that after it became known that Bishop Pineda had slept with seminarians, the seminary's former rector and his team of formators kept the bishop away from the seminary and prevented him from teaching in 2016. The former rector could not be reached by the Register for comment.

But the archdiocesan source told the Register that Bishop Pineda 'returned again in 2017 at the request of Cardinal Maradiaga,' adding that the bishop was seen at the seminary by others 'recently,' although this was unable to be verified.

Meanwhile, the Register's sources have confirmed reports in both the Honduran and Italian press that the bishop lavished gifts and even bought a downtown apartment for his first assistant, a Mexican named Erick Cravioto Fajardo. For years, Cravioto lived in a spacious room adjacent to the cardinal's quarters at the archbishop's residence, Villa Iris. Bishop Pineda also lived in the residence.

Cravioto's room was 'right next to the cardinal,' who knew 'perfectly well that Pineda spent hours and hours with him and never said anything, never did anything,' according to the Register's second source in Honduras. Instead, the source said, the cardinal dismissed the bishop's relationship with Cravioto and 'made excuses for it all.'

As well as this relationship, Bishop Pineda is reported to maintain a string of other intimate male friends in Honduras and abroad whom he has treated with gifts. One of those alleged relationships was with a man named Mike Estrada, known as 'Padre Mike,' who for over a decade served as chaplain to the Honduran police force with the assent of Cardinal Maradiaga, despite there being no record that he was ordained, according to the Register's sources. Estrada, pictured in 2013 in the Honduran newspaper La Prensa presiding at the funeral of a gunned-down 25-year-old policeman, voluntarily resigned as chaplain in January last year, Honduran media reported.

Bishop Pineda also has a record of expensive foreign travel, in a country where 63% of the population live below the poverty line. According to documentation obtained by the Register, between last June and the beginning of this year the Honduran prelate had personally clocked up over L430,211 (Honduran Lempira equaling approximately $18,000) in personal air fares, including two separate first-class trips totaling L167,981 (around $7,100) to Madrid in November to meet close male friends.

One of the Madrid trips, to take part in a week-long Jesuit retreat, reportedly was meant as a sanction on Bishop Pineda at the request of the Pope, after he was informed of the allegations about what was happening in the archdiocese.

Unanswered Questions

The Register has learned that Bishop Casaretto's investigation was requested by both Cardinal Maradiaga and Bishop Pineda, in response to concerns raised by local Catholics.

The bishop reportedly heard from over 50 witnesses, including the ex-seminarians. The Register's second source also gave his own personal testimony.

He said that Bishop Casaretto received 'extremely grave testimonies,' regarding both the alleged financial improprieties and Bishop Pineda's alleged sexual misconduct, and that Bishop Casaretto made it known that he was 'appalled and shocked' by what he had heard.

When contacted by the Register, one of the seminarians who submitted testimonies to Bishop Casaretto confirmed that the text obtained by the Register was accurate. The second seminarian could not be reached for similar direct confirmation, but one of the Register's other Honduran sources vouched for the authenticity of the text of that testimony.

The Register also attempted to contact various other parties in Honduras for comment, including Bishop Hector Garcia Osorio, Secretary General of the country's bishops' conference, the Honduran bishops' spokesman, the spokesman for the archdiocese of Tegucigalpa, and the current and former seminary rectors. Each was asked about the sexual misconduct allegations regarding Bishop Pineda, as well as the financial concerns communicated to Bishop Casaretto. However, phone calls and/or emails made to all of these parties had not been answered, at the time the Register published this report.

The Register also directed questions to both Bishop Pineda and Cardinal Maradiaga, giving them a chance to answer directly, but neither of the Honduran Church leaders responded to these inquiries. The Register also contacted the cardinal while he was in Rome for the latest C9 meeting at the end of February, inviting him to meet to share his views on the allegations, but he did not respond.

In addition, the Register twice contacted Cardinal Marc Ouellet, prefect of the Congregation for Bishops, for comment, and asked Holy See spokesman Greg Burke what had happened to the results of the Bishop Casaretto investigation and if any action would be taken. Neither party has so far answered the Register's inquiries.

The Register is continuing to conduct inquiries into the allegations of financial irregularities and sexual misconduct in the Archdiocese of Tegucigalpa, and will publish additional reports related to these matters as warranted

[NCRegister] 2224.16


















Ireland Supreme Court rules unborn children have no legal rights

THE IRISH SUPREME COURT has unanimously ruled that unborn children have no rights in the Irish constitution apart from the right to life, as enshrined in the Eighth Amendment.

In a landmark judgement, the seven judge court this morning overturned a decision made by the High Court last summer that an unborn child has rights in law beyond the constitutionally protected right to life. This ruling removes a significant obstacle in the government’s plans to hold a referendum on repealing the Eighth Amendment in late May.

The High Court decision involved a Nigerian man in a relationship with an Irish woman, who was seeking Irish residency on the basis that he was the father of her unborn child. Mr Justice Richard Humphreys found that unborn children, including the baby of a parent facing deportation, enjoys 'significant' rights and legal protection at common law, by statute, and under the Constitution, 'going well beyond the right to life alone'.

The State sought and secured a fast-track appeal to the Supreme Court against these findings, which could have derailed or delayed its plans to hold a referendum on repealing the Eighth Amendment and giving the Oireachtas power to legislate abortion.

The State insisted the unborn has no constitutionally protected rights beyond the right to life in Article 40.3.3 and cannot invoke, or have invoked on its behalf, any other constitutional rights, a position that Senior Counsel Maurice Collins described as extreme, striking and startling.

Both the Save The 8th Campaign and the Pro-Life Campaign have said that the ruling highlights the importance of retaining the Eighth Amendment, as without it, the unborn would have no rights at all.

Pat Buckley, NACF President Emeritus and SPUC’s Republic of Ireland Officer said: 'This perverse ruling makes it abundantly clear that if Article 40.3.3 is repealed unborn babies will not only lose their current constitutional protection but will be exposed to abortion on demand up to birth.

'It also vindicates the decision of the Irish people to insert the 8th Amendment into the Constitution in 1983 and underlines the vital importance of retaining it in the Constitution. We must all redouble our efforts to ensure that the 8th Amendment is retained and that unborn babies are properly protected.'

The Government now intends to publish the legislation for the proposed referendum tomorrow, and it could be debated in the Dail as early as the same evening.


[LifeNewss.com] 2224.T4


















Ireland Government minister warns Church to 'celebrate' homosexuality at World Meeting of Families

A GOVERNMENT official has warned the country's Catholic Church that homosexual partners should be 'celebrated and not excluded' from the upcoming World Meeting of Families (WMOF) in Dublin later this year.

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Katherine Zappone said she hopes the event 'will not be used as a platform for remarks which exclude, isolate or hurt any family,' and that 'the event organized by the Catholic Church will not be used as a platform' for any such remarks.

'LGBTI families, like all families, should be celebrated and not excluded - that's the message that should be coming not just from the World Meeting of Families, but from all who believe in justice, equality and fairness,' she said.

'Equality is hard-fought, difficult to achieve, but more importantly it is also very fragile,' Zappone went on. 'As campaigners, as activists and as governments, we must ensure that no gathering, group or individual is ever allowed to undermine these rights.'

Zappone is Ireland's first openly lesbian minister. Her late 'wife,' Ann Louise Gilligan, was a former Catholic nun. Zappone is also a pro-abortion activist.

TELL DISNEY: Don't make Elsa a lesbian in Frozen 2! Sign the petition here.

Zappone said all facets of public life must be inclusive.

'There should be a welcome for all,' the Irish Government Minister said, and, 'never again should public statements or remarks which seek to isolate certain families be tolerated.'

'The leadership of Pope Francis has given hope to many,' said Zappone, and recent efforts 'to exclude our former president Mary McAleese from an event in the Vatican, together with the airbrushing out of images of LGBTI families from certain Church literature related to this event, is a source of serious concern.'

Zappone was referencing a recent dustup over McAleese having been reportedly struck from the speaking list of a Vatican conference by a Holy See official. The event slated for this month observes International Women's Day and has been moved by organizers to a venue outside Vatican City.

She was also referring to the removal from WMOF material of the picture of two lesbians in an intimate embrace - the image had also been accompanied by text explicitly promoting homosexual relationships as a form of family.

Zappone made the comments while addressing a Conference on Private and Family Life for LGBTI People in Copenhagen Friday. The Irish Times covered a draft of her remarks prior to the address.

The World Meeting of Families will take place in August, hosted by the Archdiocese of Dublin. Pope Francis is expected to attend the event.

The WMOF has the Pope's contentious exhortation Amoris Laetitia as its primary catechetical foundation.

The document continues to be the source of controversy due to its seeming tacit allowance of access to Holy Communion for couples living in objectively sinful situations - including divorced and remarried Catholics, those cohabiting and living in same-sex partnerships.

The WMOF gathering has been criticized for an apparent pro-LGBT agenda.

The text accompanying the photo with the lesbian couple stated:

'While the Church upholds the ideal of marriage as a permanent commitment between a man and a woman, other unions exist which provide mutual support to the couple. Pope Francis encourages us never to exclude but to accompany these couples also, with love, care and support.'

The text and photo was also placed below a heading in the WMOF promo material titled, 'The Christian Vision for the Family.'

Aside from the photo and text putting the lesbian couple forth as a vision of the family, other WMOF promotional material put out by the Irish bishops had contained an interview with an LGBT activist saying she's 'upset' with Catholic teaching on homosexuality.

The video also contained an interview with another woman saying that the fact that she's 'gay' has 'never been a huge problem in my family.'

It is part of a video in the WMOF promotional material titled, 'God's Mercy - No One Excluded.'

Dublin Archbishop Diarmuid Martin pledged last month that the World Meeting of Families will remain 'an inclusive event, open to all families and family members.'

His comments came in response to the reported removal from the Vatican event speaker list of McAleese.

The former Irish president is a vocal supporter of homosexuality who has suggested that Catholic teaching on marriage and family is 'homophobic' and that Catholic teaching on sexuality might be a form of 'child abuse.'

In an October 2016 speech preparing for the World Meeting of Families, Archbishop Martin declined to define family, saying, we must not 'allow ourselves to be become entangled in trying to produce definitions of the family' because different cultural values mean family 'cannot be defined simply.'

Last October Bishop Brendan Leahy of Limerick had said as well that homosexual couples must be welcomed at the World Meeting of Families.

Disturbed by the direction the WMOF is taking, a group of Irish Catholics is planning a conference to promote the Catholic Church's constant and unchanging teaching on marriage and family life coinciding with two of the six-day WMOF event.

The Catholic Church teaches that marriage is the lifelong sacramental union between a man and a woman.

The Church also teaches that individuals who experience same-sex attraction, like all individuals, are to be chaste. Individuals with same-sex inclinations are to be accepted with respect compassion and sensitivity, the Church teaches, but homosexual activity is gravely depraved and can never be approved under any circumstances.

Various pro-homosexual factions continue to oppose the Catholic Church's teaching on sexuality - including the Church's catechetical language. LGBT supporters have also frequently leveraged Francis in their cause by way of his infamous 'Who am I to judge?' comment, part of a response to a 2013 interview question regarding a gay priest and a gay lobby within the Vatican.

Zappone's warning for the Catholic Church about the Church's handling of the WMOF in regard to LGBT issues continued in her remarks for the Copenhagen conference.

Of the WMOF she said, 'The international gathering is coming to a country where people want marriage equality, where adoption by LGBTI people is government policy, and where all families are fully respected. Organisers should reflect on that.'

Zappone also implied the WMOF should be used to advocate LGBT issues.

'The eyes of the world will be on Dublin,' she said. 'Indeed some of the biggest audiences will be in countries where LGBTI people are discriminated against, threatened and abused.'

'The World Meeting of Families is a unique opportunity to confront such inequality, discrimination and hate,' stated Zappone. 'It can provide global leadership on inclusion.'

The Catholic event for families should carry the message that LGBT families are to be celebrated, Zappone continued, saying as well that no group should be allowed to 'undermine' the 'right' to 'equality.'

She also said that statements isolating 'certain families' should not be allowed in public discourse.

'All aspects of our public life must be inclusive,' Zappone said. 'There should be a welcome for all. And never again should public statements or remarks which seek to isolate certain families be tolerated.'

[LSN] 2224.17

















Spain Prominent priest addresses the Church crisis, speaks about Schism

DR. MAIKE HICKSON reports for OnePeterFive: 'Just after the recent renewed polite criticism of Pope Francis by Father Thomas G. Weinandy, the well-respected U.S. theologian, there comes to us another priestly voice of resistance, this time coming out of Spain. For some weeks now, Father Santiago Martin - the founder of the international association Franciscans of Mary with 10,000 members world-wide - has been raising his voice, criticizing the current 'confusion, polarization,' and the danger of open 'schism.'

Giuseppe Nardi, journalist of the German Catholic website Katholisches.info, has first brought out this voice in German. At the end of January, he reported about Father Martin's words which he spoke to the audience of his own Catholic television station, Magnificat.tv. In one of his weekly commentaries, Father Martin then spoke about the question of the 'married priests,' after first reviewing some of the 'polarization' that took place during the papal visit to Chile with regard to the Barros case and the papal words about it. After mentioning Cardinal Sean Patrick O'Malley's own critique of Pope Francis in this matter, Father Martin observes that there might be 'turning point with regard to the support of certain liberal media' that had previously existed for Pope Francis.

Father Martin regretted that in the midst of these public events some words of Cardinal Beniamino Stella, the Prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy, had been mostly overlooked. (Onepeterfive reported here.) The Spanish priest saw that Cardinal Stella opened up the idea of ordaining to the priesthood married men, and he warned that this new possibility, though first introduced for 'certain regions in Brazil and some Pacific islands,' might be 'the beginning of the end of mandatory celibacy.'

However, for Father Martin, this new wound adds only new burdens: 'Some people are astonished about this timing,' especially after 'another wound just had been opened' with regard to the divorced and 'remarried' couples and their access to the Sacraments without that they begin and continue to live in continence. The Spanish priest insisted that so many changes are not good: 'To be fixated is not good. However, nor is it good to push on the gas pedal. There is too much confusion, too much tension in this moment in the Church to open up a new source of discussion.'

Only a few days ago, Father Martin made yet another set of important comments about the current Church crisis. This time, he wrote a commentary for the prominent Honduran newspaper La Prensa. He speaks now about war and adds:

'It is not normal that that the website of the Pontifical Academy for Life publishes an article in which it is said that the use of the contraceptive pill has to be permitted while at the same time there is a strong group of Catholics who converted from Islam and who write to the pope a letter in which they state that they feel abandoned by the Church'.

Father Martin sees here a set of contradictory developments which are troubling. One the one hand, there is the (progressivist) movement to establish a 'theory of accomplished facts,' on the other, there are signs that those who are holding on to the Church's Tradition and to the Word of God 'are leaving the Church' and that there might come 'a schism.' Both developments might be taking place at the same time. He explains, as follows:

'At the beginning, when they started with the debate about Communion for the remarried divorcees, one spoke about a possible schism, should it come to it. Now, Amoris Laetitia has allowed it in such an ambiguous manner that one may interpret it either way. As I have said, while this confusion is still unresolved, other confusions are now being added.

The Spanish priest adds that 'there are too many [confusions], and they come too fast in a row. There is too much acceleration, which only happens when the driver has lost control, or when the car is to come off the road in order to drive against a tree.' Father Martin wonders whether in this case, the famous Shakespearean expression (from Hamlet) is not applicable, according to which there is something rotten in the state of Denmark. Without once mentioning the name of Pope Francis, Father Martin adds: 'I also do not know why this is the case, but I am certain that somebody knows it, and I do not here mean God who of course knows everything.' It is important now 'to pray and to remain calm.'

It is here that the Spanish priest also warns against a schism, because 'some might only wait for it' by hitting the loyal watch dog in order to then be able to say that he is dangerous. That is to say, such a schism could happen because one group actively seeks it - or because another group tries to push another one out.

The significance of the warnings coming from Father Martin lies in the weight of his apostolate. Father Martin (born 1954 in Madrid) had founded the Franciscans of Mary in 1988, and in 2007, he received Pope Benedict's official approval. The movement has its own priestly seminary and is present in 27 countries, among them being Spain, the U.S., Canada, Colombia, Venezuela, Peru, Brazil, Poland, Holland, Sri Lanka, and Italy.

In light of his own recent firm interventions, it is not surprising that Father Martin's own website published excerpts from Father Weinandy's own fine and polite criticism of Pope Francis. Father Martin himself also recently posted his own rebuke of the German bishops' decision to admit Protestant spouses of Catholics to Holy Communion, and only in individual cases; he revealingly entitled his article with the words: 'When the exception destroys the rule.'

Update: Pedro Luis Llera, Professor of Spanish language and literature and contributor to the Spanish website Infocatólica, sent to us, after reading this report, the following appreciative and confirmatory message about Father Martin:

'Thank you very much. Indeed, Fr. Santiago Martin is one of the most lucid voices when denouncing the current crisis of the Church. He isone of the few voices that are being raised in Spain, along with Bishop Reig Pla de Alcalá de Henares and a few more. The others remain silent or are carried away by the current modernist tide.'

[1{P5] 2224.18


















United Kingdom Catholic Church sets out a vision for closer ties with Islam

ROBERT SPENCER writes for Jihad Watch: 'Had Charles Martel and the Franks lost their battle against the jihadis at Tours in 732, the eighteenth-century English historian Edward Gibbon envisioned the continent's complete Islamization:

'A victorious line of march had been prolonged above a thousand miles from the rock of Gibraltar to the banks of the Loire; the repetition of an equal space would have carried the Saracens to the confines of Poland and the Highlands of Scotland; the Rhine is not more impassable than the Nile or Euphrates, and the Arabian fleet might have sailed without a naval combat into the mouth of the Thames. Perhaps the interpretation of the Koran would now be taught in the schools of Oxford, and her pulpits might demonstrate to a circumcised people the sanctity and truth of the revelation of Mahomet'.

And now here we are: the jihadis lost at Tours, but their defeat was not complete, and now victory is at hand: 'the interpretation of the Koran' is now 'taught in the schools of Oxford,' or at least at the Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies. Is there a Center for Christian Studies at al-Azhar? Of course not. Has any Islamic entity ever sought improved ties with the Catholic Church? Don't be silly.

'Dialogue' and interfaith outreach always and in every case go only one way, with fond Christians such as Vincent Nichols appealing for peace and friendship to Muslim leaders, who use the resulting 'dialogue' to silence Christians who are talking about Muslim persecution of Christians and the Qur'an's teaching regarding Christianity, and to engage in subtle dawah, Islamic proselytizing, with the participating Christians, and in any documents resulting from the 'dialogue.'




So Vincent Nichols is pictured here planting a tree at the Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies, but that isn't the only hole he is digging.

'Leave them; they are blind guides. And if a blind man leads a blind man, both will fall into a pit.' (Matthew 15:14)

Michael Binyon writes in The Times 'How can dialogue between faiths lead to a deeper spiritual understanding? Is there not always a danger that both sides will talk across each other without listening or just agree on the bare minimum they have in common?

These questions were raised this week by Cardinal Vincent Nichols, the Archbishop of Westminster, when he made the first visit by the head of the Roman Catholic Church in Britain to the Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies, the dazzling new college that aims to become the country's principal centre for the academic study of Islam.

He said that dialogue between faith and society would be 'significantly impoverished' if dialogue between faiths were characterised by suspicion and hostility or were simply non-existent….

[Jihad Watch]| 2224.19



















United Kingdom What your children are being taught

PARENTS with children in state schools need to see what's being planned for their children



[http://www.educateandcelebrate.org] 2224.20


















United Kingdom Catholic schools suffer under faith-based cap

THE FOLLOWING letter was published in the Daily Telegraph on March 8th.

SIR – The arguments advanced by the proponents of a cap on the number of children admitted to faith schools on the basis of religion (Letters, March 6) are admirable.

Open, inclusive, diverse and integrated schools are to be welcomed, and existing Catholic schools provide a very good model for this. A third of their pupils are non-Catholic and they educate more than 26,000 Muslim pupils. One in seven ethnic minority pupils in England and Wales attend a Catholic school, including more than one in five black children. These schools educate 21 per cent more pupils from ethnic minority backgrounds compared to other schools, and they perform above the national average at GCSEs.

Catholic schools are also more likely to be oversubscribed from people outside their faith community than Islamic and Hindu schools, to which non-Muslims and non-Hindus rarely apply.
Canon law forbids Catholic bishops from turning away Catholic pupils solely on the basis of their faith. The combination of the cap and popularity of Catholic schools among people of other faiths, however, means that the Catholic Church is required to discriminate on exactly this basis. As such, it has been impossible to open new free schools.

The main practical effect of the admissions cap, then, has been to prevent new Catholic schools from opening, denying thousands of pupils the opportunity of a place in a diverse and nurturing environment. To argue that the operator of the most diverse existing schools cannot be allowed to open new ones for fears they will not be diverse is entirely illogical. Advocates for diversity in education would do better to support the initiative to open more high-quality schools serving many of the most disadvantaged in our society. Scrapping the cap is the simplest and easiest way of achieving this.

Sir Edward Leigh MP (Con)

Jacob Rees-Mogg MP (Con)

Martin Vickers MP (Con)

Sir Bill Cash MP (Con)

London SW1


[DT] 2224.T5


















United States Jim Caviezel tells university students to 'stand out' and 'be saints'

DOUG MAINWARING reports for LifeSiteNews: 'Catholic actor Jim Caviezel, who famously played Jesus in The Passion of the Christ, told university students on Sunday that they must set themselves apart from this 'corrupt generation' and 'be saints.'

'You weren't made to 'fit in,' my brothers and sisters. You were born to stand out. Set yourself apart from this corrupt generation. Be saints,' he said.



Caviezel made the comments during a March 4 panel discussion at the University of Steubenville, Ohio, where he discusses the soon-to-be-released film, Paul, Apostle of Christ, in which he stars. He was joined by EWTN's Raymond Arroyo, host of The World Over, Dr. Scott Hahn, Chair of Biblical Theology and the New Evangelization at the university, and Eric Groth, executive producer of Paul, Apostle of Christ.

While the panel's dialogue on the film was fascinating, it was Caviezel's concluding speech that made the crowd in an overflowing room rise to its feet in thunderous applause.

Caviezel told the students that they are at 'war' with the 'most dangerous enemy' who wants to strip them of their freedom, of having the right 'to do what you ought.'

'Every generation of Americans needs to know that freedom exists, not to do what you like, but having the right to do what you ought,' he said.

Here is his concluding comment in full:

This message is for you. A great man once said that, 'evil is powerless if the good are unafraid.' But you and I have a rendezvous with destiny. We'll preserve for our children this, the last best hope of man on earth - or, we'll sentence them to take the last step into a thousand years of darkness.

We're at war with the most dangerous enemy that has ever faced mankind in his climb from the swamp to the stars. And it's been said if we lose this war, and in so doing, lose this great way of freedom of ours, history will report with the greatest astonishment, that those who had the most to lose did the least to prevent it from happening.

Well, I think it's high time now that we ask ourselves if we still even know the freedoms that were intended for us by our founding fathers? Every generation of Americans needs to know that freedom exists, not to do what you like, but having the right to do what you ought.

You weren't made to 'fit in,' my brothers and sisters. You were born to stand out. Set yourself apart from this corrupt generation. Be saints. God bless you.

The actor's words were met with thunderous applause and a standing ovation.

Elsewhere during the panel discussion, the actor made bold statements of faith, for instance, asserting, 'I believe the devil is more afraid of me than I am of him.'

When asked by a webcast viewer who had experienced conversion after watching The Passion of the Christ if Caviezel thinks his movie on Saint Paul will be similarly powerful, the actor explained this movie is different, but the message will be just as powerful.

'Forgiveness is everything. It's forgiveness at all costs. And it does not mean weakness, it does not mean passivity. It means meeting evil face to face with love. And that's the power behind this movie.'

'Love and Forgiveness' is the theme running through the movie, he said.

In one of the film clips shown to the audience, Caviezel as St. Luke, says to a young Christian who proposes murdering Romans to avenge the deaths of members of Rome's nascent Christian community, 'None of us here have walked with Christ, but Paul has followed him longer than us all. I have watched him being beaten. I have watched him be stoned and flogged, and never once did he raise his finger against his oppressors. Let peace be with you. For we live in the world but we do not wage war as the world does. Peace begins with you, Cassius. Love is the only way.'

'Courage . . . is ardent love, noted the actor. 'Love creates change by igniting a passion in each one of us, one person at a time. Paul is the spark that ignites a real revolution. And that revolution is love.'

The film's executive producer, Eric Groth, explained why this movie focuses only on the end of Paul's life.

'To tell Paul's entire life story would require a miniseries. You look at the amazing conversion experience he went through. From being Saul, the greatest persecutor of the early Church … to the greatest promulgator of the faith, and to look at that from the end of his life where he's gone through that conversion, and all those experiences where he's gained wisdom and yet we can still see a man who is very human, who knows he's saved by the grace of God, and yet he still has those struggles with his humanity. And I think that's an important thing to be able to reflect on, to be able to say, 'Hey, he's a lot like I am.''

Dr. Scott Hahn described the historical/Biblical context of this moment in Paul's story.

'The Roman Empire, under Nero, fell into the deepest corruption. The darkness was most likely demonic,' said the theologian. 'And so here is the Christian community-the Body of Christ-experiencing what Jesus' body had just undergone a couple of decades before, back in the early 30's. And so you recognize this is the moment when it looks as though this empire, this culture of death, will snuff out the life of Christ's Body.'

'What I think this movie shows us,' continued Hahn, 'reminds me of the old proverb: 'They buried us, but they didn't know we were seeds.'

'We have got to buckle up and really pray and enter into the wisdom of Paul's writings because we might not end up in prison, but our children or our grandchildren will, and they have a lot to learn from the lessons of this man,' said Dr. Hahn.

'You know, it's said that Paul was such a zealous apostle because Saul was such a zealous persecutor,' continued Hahn. 'God redirected all of that energy, and even though he's aging in this movie, it is really refined and deepened. And that's the kind of wisdom we need now.'

'Theological speculation has a place, but that really practical wisdom in the face of death and suffering, this is where we learn life's deepest lessons,' he added.

Paul, Apostle of Christ will be released in theaters on Wednesday, March 28, one day prior to Holy Thursday when Catholic celebrate the institution of the Eucharist.

Caviezel is a devout Catholic who has called abortion 'the greatest moral defect of the western world.' He is also working on a sequel to 'The Passion of the Christ' with director Mel Gibson that focuses on the Resurrection.

'This is the real deal. It's going to blow your mind. It's absolutely going to make you so proud. You heard it here: It's going to be the biggest film in history,' said Caviezel.

[LSN] 2224.21



















United States Men in America

AMERICAN men are in serious trouble, but few people seem to care. That was Fox News host Tucker Carlson’s theme when he introduced a new series for his show called Men in America.




[Fox News] 2224.FR1



















United States Oregon bill allows mentally ill patients to be starved to death

THE FIRST U.S. state that legalized doctors killing sick patients has now passed a bill that critics say will allow healthcare givers to starve to death mentally ill patients.

Oregon's Senate passed House Bill 4135 on Tuesday (17-12) and in the House two weeks ago (35-25). Touted as an update to Oregon's Advance Directive Form, critics say the bill paves the way for healthcare givers to remove access to food and water for vulnerable Oregonians with illnesses such as dementia and Alzheimer's.

Oregon Right to Life (ORTL) Executive Director Lois Anderson says the effect of the bill is that 'vulnerable Oregonians are left without protections and their right to basic care like food and water.'

'The advance directive was put into Oregon statute back in 1993,' State Rep. Bill Kennemer (R) explained, adding that it was 'very well vetted' and 'thoroughly discussed.'

'If it were to be removed from statute, I fear the legal protections we carefully placed there could be jeopardized, potentially harming end of life decisions for vulnerable patients,' he added.

Under the old advanced directive, caretakers may not decide to starve a mentally impaired patient to death unless that caretaker has been given decision-making authority by the patient before becoming mentally impaired (with four rare exceptions).

HB-4135 reverses that provision, allowing a mentally impaired patient to be starved to death - even against his or her will - unless the patient has made a contrary advanced directive.

'If signed into law, HB-4135 would endanger Oregonians with dementia and Alzheimer's, allowing their healthcare representatives to remove their access to food and water,' the ORTL website explains.

'Over the last 25 years, Oregonians at the end-of-life stage have been protected by the current advance directive. Removing it from statute has legal consequences.'

'It's disappointing that House Democrats passed a bill that has obvious and significant problems,' Anderson added.

'What limited testimony was allowed in the House Health Care Committee hearing revealed the process has been rushed and will lead to unintended consequences that endanger vulnerable Oregonians,' he said.

'Oregon's advance directive is a critical document that deserved more than three weeks of rushed deliberation,' Oregon Right to Life Political Director David Kilada told LifeSiteNews.

'The disregard every single Democrat in the Oregon Legislature had for the concerns raised about House Bill 4135 was disgraceful. Stakeholders - including doctors, an attorney, and thousands of Oregonians - expressed concern that the bill would have unintended consequences endangering vulnerable people. These concerns were ignored.'

Bill Harris testified in favor of the legislation. His wife had dementia, and he went to court to legally starve her to death. He said he supports HB-4135 because his court case was unsuccessful.

The bill now goes to Democrat Governor Kate Brown's desk for signing into law. Gov. Brown is praised by abortion groups such as Emily's List and Planned Parenthood.

Oregon was one of the first states to legalize abortion in 1969 and the first state in the union to legalize doctor-assisted suicide in 1997.

[LSN] 2224.22

















International gloria.tv.news


[gloria.tv] 2224.23


















International Some jihad headlines of the week


Bangladesh: sci-fi writer stabbed in head at seminar because he's an 'enemy of Islam'

Egypt: ISIS urges Muslims to turn holiday hotspots into bloodbaths by murdering Christian tourists

Egypt: Cleric: Muslims must fight non-Muslims in jihad until they convert to Islam or submit and pay the jizya

Saudi Arabia: Advertisment offers Moroccan women for sale

Wales: Teenager sentenced for plotting ISIS attack on Justin Bieber concert

[CF News] 2224.24

















International The Prophet Voris



[CMTV] 2224.25



















International The World Over with Raymond Arroyo




[EWTN] 2224.26






















Tradition as a Form of Discernment

DR. THOMAS PFAU, Professor of English at Duke University, delivers his talk entitled 'Newman's Development of Doctrine: Tradition as a Form of Discernment.' Dr. Pfau's talk was sponsored by the English Dept. at Franciscan University of Steubenville.



[Franciscan University of Steubenville] 2224.27
























Hello Yello Clothing

CHARLOTTE COORY writes: 'Hello Yello Clothing was 'officially' created in late 2017. But its true beginning was months earlier, inspired by my sister during her final stages of a terminal illness.

The illness didn't come as a surprise. My beautiful, vibrant and funny sister had lived a full life with a rare form of stomach cancer for almost twenty years. But in 2016 she became critically ill. 'Two to four weeks,' the doctor said. She fought a remarkable battle and lived for a further 16 months.

During this time an abundance of cards, emails, flowers and gifts were sent by generous family and friends from all over the world to their home in the US. Word had soon got out that nightdresses would be useful. Beautifully embroidered sleepwear was packaged and posted from all corners of the globe.

Living in Australia, I too took trips to visit from time-to-time over those last 16 months, and communicated almost daily. On one of my early visits, it became clear the well-intentioned nightdress gifts just didn't feel right to her. She had always worn pyjamas, but as her condition became more serious, pyjamas were also problematic.

At this time, my sister had a G-tube inserted through her abdomen to drain the contents of her stomach into a bag. The bag needed to be lower than her stomach at all times or the contents on her stomach would flow back causing her to vomit. When she slept she would clip the bag onto the side of her bed or have it on the floor. As a result, she couldn't wear conventional pyjamas as the tube from her stomach would get caught on the waist band of the pyjama bottoms and pull at her stomach painfully. So instead she slept in a pyjama top and underpants.

Which was fine…until visitors came. She wanted to wear pyjamas bottoms so she could have visitors come into her bedroom without feeling self-conscious being half-naked or that she had to get dressed.

So I decided to shop around! The vast majority of my shopping is done online, including clothes. When I had three children all under the age of sixteen months, internet shopping saved my sanity. I confidently told my sister I would be able to find pyjamas on the internet that would fit her needs. A simple slit in the side of the pyjama bottoms for her tube to pass through would have solved the problem. To this day, almost two years later, I still have not been able to find a pair of pyjamas that fitted her needs. I tried to adapt a few pairs of pyjamas for her, without much success. But pyjama design was only one part of my sister's wardrobe which needed a rethink.

She would have loved to have trousers that could hold her bag on the inside, 'so I don't scare small children when I go out' as she said, tongue in cheek (although, it should be noted that children were always the most fascinated by her medical condition). T-shirts and bras that she could put on without having to take out her IV each time would have made getting dressed easier.

We were astounded. Finding clothing that was not only practical but that my sister actually liked was a major struggle. During our search, we became even more surprised by the lack of clothing that was available for people who did not 'fit the norm' more generally.

Sure, my sister had a rare condition. We could understand why it was difficult to find clothing for her. But we couldn't understand why there was such a lack of options for people from larger groups - such as those who require a wheelchair, those with PICCS and ports for the long-term, and people with dexterity issues who find buttons and zippers difficult. These people must make up a significant portion of the global clothing market, surely?

By the time we found some suitable clothes, my sister was close to the end of her battle with cancer. So many generous friends had spent 'good amounts' on well-meaning gifts. Had we known about the clothing options out there (albeit limited) money could have been better spent on clothes that helped my sister live more independently and lifted her up.

Yes... Hello Yello Clothing has been created in honour of my sister. But it is also in honour of those who have similar logistical clothing challenges. It is time that you have the opportunity to present yourself to the world with the ease, dignity and style you deserve. To Be Yourself !

We would really love your help by completing our short survey at this link, where you can share your experiences and your story to help inspire others and share ideas:

Thank you for taking your time to complete the survey.

[CF News] 2224.28



















Clock face Event


Rome Life Forum

VOICE OF THE FAMILY is pleased to announce the fifth annual Rome Life Forum, which will be held at the Pontifical University of St Thomas Aquinas (the Angelicum) from 17-18 May 2018. It will be followed by the Rome March for Life on Saturday 19 May.

The conference will take as its theme 'The True Understanding of Conscience'. We will explore both the authentic teachings of the Church on conscience, and the threats posed by the false theories now being widely professed within the structures of the Church. A correct understanding of the nature of conscience is an essential foundation of a civilisation which truly values and protects the family and innocent human life.

The Forum will be addressed by a number of prestigious speakers including: Raymond Cardinal Burke, Bishop Athanasius Schneider, Mgr Livio Melina, Fr Thomas Crean OP, Professor Roberto de Mattei and Professor Isobel Camp. The event is sponsored by Human Life International, Famiglia Domani, Family Life International NZ, LifeSiteNews and the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children.

The Forum is open to all those who have leadership roles in the pro-life movement or in movements concerned with the defence and diffusion of Catholic moral and social teaching. More information, and the booking form to reserve a place, can be found here.


[VOTF] 2224.29





















Pope Francis: The Movie



[Remnant] 2224.30



















World Net Daily: Pope Francis is causing havoc in the Church.

CHRISTOPHER A. FERRARA writes for Fatima Perspectives: 'As the Catholic 'mainstream' awakens to the reality of 'this disastrous papacy,' even the conservative secular media are beginning to sound the alarm.

Consider this article at World Net Daily by one Barbara Simpson, a former radio talk show host in the San Francisco Bay area. Simpson can see that 'if politics today in this country are a mess it's the same and probably worse for the Catholic Church. What started as a time of hope with the election of Pope Francis has turned into the greatest period of confusion and likely heresy since the Reformation.'

Simpson does not point to the usual conservative complaints about the Pope's antipathy toward capitalism or his call for open borders. Rather, she points directly at the heart of the crisis of this pontificate: its incredible attack on the Church's constant teaching on marriage, procreation and sexual morality in general.

Simpson's diagnosis is spot on:

'Confusion is the name of the game, but it isn't a game. Pope Francis, who initially exuded a look of caring and friendliness, has turned into a pope who issues opinion[s] that contradict established Catholic teaching, while at the same time denying he's doing that. Well, sort of. Much of the confusion stems from his statements in his document entitled, 'Amoris Laetitia,' which has been described by many, including clergy, as a ticking time bomb for Catholic morality. In it, the pope states that some Catholics, living in circumstances that heretofore had been considered sinful, may in fact be acting in conformity with God's law, at least how Francis interprets it….'

Simpson hits the bull's eye with her recognition of the utter arbitrariness that Amoris Laetitia (AL) introduces into assessments of the morality of behavior the Church has always condemned as violative of the Sixth Commandment. Just who would be entitled to 'exceptions' to strict application of the moral law under AL's nebulous notion of 'discernment' of 'complex circumstances' - meaning, in essence, situation ethics? Writes Simpson:

'Is it OK for divorced Catholics to remarry and still receive Holy Communion? Centuries of teaching and tradition say no, but according to this pope, it's 'maybe.'

'What about the issue of artificial contraception? It has long been a decided fact that it is not licit for Catholic couples to practice it - it's simply immoral and wrong.

'But today? Apparently, there's a movement within Francis' church that says there are times when it is OK. When? Who decides? It's hard to say because there are cardinals and bishops across the Catholic world who agree and disagree, and the pope allows this confusion to continue….

'Keep in mind, there are still the Ten Commandments, which outline the areas of sin that Catholics need to be aware of and avoid - murder, lying, theft, betrayal and more. Which ones can Pope Francis allow Catholics to ignore and still gain entry into heaven?

'How does one explain to Catholics that it is OK to ignore 'some' of the rules and yet follow others - and, in fact, which ones?

'If an act had been deemed to be immoral for members of the church in good standing over the centuries, what does it mean that there is a pope now, who declared he is the judge of what is OK now and to forget about the past?'

How is it that certain 'conservative' Catholic commentators still fail or refuse to see what is obvious to Simpson?

Simpson even picks up on the clear signals Francis is emitting concerning priestly celibacy: 'Then there's the issue of married priests. For centuries, a no-no. Now, however, under Francis, maybe - and likely.'

Simpson further notes that, as to the four cardinals who presented Pope Francis with their famous dubia concerning AL, Francis 'has effectively ignored them. NO response at all.' Nor has the Pope responded to pleas from the Catholic philosopher Josef Seifert who, as Simpson correctly summarizes, warns that 'the logical consequence of the pope's position will be the destruction of the entire moral teaching of the Church.'

'Pity the Catholics,' Simpson concludes. 'They're torn between trying to do the 'right thing' and following the leader of their church, who is changing the rules for whatever goals he has in mind. As they say, 'old hairy legs' - Satan - must be rejoicing!'

A remarkable assessment from a secular news source of the 'diabolical disorientation' that now afflicts the Catholic Church, just as Sister Lucy foretold. What Simpson does not observe, however, is the inevitability of a reversal of this disaster in keeping with Christ's promise of the indefectibility of the Church and Our Lady's own promise respecting the triumph of Her Immaculate Heart - under the leadership of the holy and courageous Pope who, when all seems lost, will finally do what She requested.

[This article has been corrected to reflect the original article's mistaken assumption that Simpson is not a Catholic.]

[FP] 2223.31



















Book reviews


To Change the Church


Ross Douthat tackles the 21st century

To Change the Church: Pope Francis and the Future of Catholicism, Ross Douthat, Simon & Schuster, 256 pages, $17.68 Hardcover; $13.99 Kindle

MAIKE HICKSON writes for OnePeterFive: 'Coming out in a few weeks is yet another good book criticizing Pope Francis for changing the Catholic Church. This one comes from even more prominent origins than the previous ones we have discussed at OnePeterFive: Ross Douthat, columnist at the New York Times. Douthat's book,