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This edition of CF NEWS No.2267 posted at 1.03 pm on Sunday, February 10th, 2019.

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Vatican watch

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The Pope in the United Arab Emirates

POPE FRANCIS has incited further controversy by signing a joint statement with a Grand Imam, saying that a 'pluralism and diversity' of religions is 'willed by God.'

The Pope signed the Document on Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together, with Ahmad el-Tayeb, Grand Imam of Egypt's al-Azhar Mosque, during an interreligious meeting in Abu Dhabi on Monday.

During his flight from the United Arab Emirates Pope Francis defended his statement, saying that his theories were in 'the line of inter-religious dialogue pursued by the Second Vatican Council', adding that the document was made 'in the spirit of the Second Vatican Council'.

Francis went on, 'It is not a step back. It is a step ahead that comes from fifty years ago.' He insisted that the text does not 'distance itself even a millimetre from the Second Vatican Council'. He added that he consulted with several 'theologians' before he decided to sign the [heretical] Abu Dhabi text, naming among them the theologian of the Pontifical Household, British-Polish Dominican Father Wojciech Giertych who was appointed by Benedict XVI.

A Deadly Embrace of the Unembraceable

CHRISTOPHER A. FERRARA writes for Fatima Perspectives -- Pope Francis did not invent the epochal folly of 'interreligious dialogue,' which requires the Catholic 'dialogue partner' to pretend - forever - that God Incarnate did not found the Church he represents and endow it with a divine mission to 'teach all nations; baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded …' (Matt. 28:19-20)

No, the dissolvent nonsense that is 'interreligious dialogue' emerged from the Vatican II document Nostra Aetate, which declares - for the first time in Church history - that 'The Church, therefore, exhorts her sons, that through dialogue and collaboration with the followers of other religions, carried out with prudence and love and in witness to the Christian faith and life, they recognize, preserve and promote the good things, spiritual and moral, as well as the socio-cultural values found among these men.'

Quite predictably, the 'witness to the Christian faith and life' fig leaf in this pronouncement was quickly dropped in the post-conciliar rush to put 'interreligious dialogue' into practice as simply naked religious indifferentism. The results were disastrous.

It was not long before Catholic churchmen succumbed to the utopian delusion of which Pius XI warned when he condemned the nascent 'ecumenical movement' of Protestant origin in Mortalium Animos and forbade any Catholic participation in such programs, as though 'the nations, although they differ among themselves in certain religious matters, will without much difficulty come to agree as brethren in professing certain doctrines, which form as it were a common basis of the spiritual life.' This fantasy is the mainspring of 'interreligious dialogue,' whose very purpose is to advance what Pius XI denounced as 'that false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good and praiseworthy since they all in different ways manifest and signify that sense which is inborn in us all, and by which we are led to God and to the obedient acknowledgment of His rule.'

Those who embrace this false opinion, Pius warned, end in 'distorting the idea of true religion' and 'little by little, turn aside to naturalism and atheism… altogether abandoning the divinely revealed religion.' This is not to say that the Catholic partisans of this error formally abandon the divinely revealed religion. On the contrary, they continue to identify themselves as Catholics. The abandonment is material in that they no longer speak and act as if the divinely revealed Catholic religion - the 'one true religion,' as Catholic churchmen called it during all the centuries before Nostra Aetate - were anything more than just one of the many religions pleasing to God in a world of splendid diversity.

Francis, in fact, expressed precisely that sentiment in a document he signed during his trip to the United Arab Emirates, the Muslim nation-state founded in the very place where Mohammed invented his religion of conquest: 'The pluralism and the diversity of religions, colour, sex, race and language are willed by God in His wisdom, through which He created human beings. This divine wisdom is the source from which the right to freedom of belief and the freedom to be different derives.'

There is no distinction here between the positive divine will, which wills only what is good and true, and God's permissive will, which tolerates evils worked by fallen men rather than preventing their freely willed human actions. As the Catholic Encyclopedia explains, 'The council of Trent (Sess. VI, can. vi, A.D. 816) defines that evil is in the power of man, and that evil deeds are not to be attributed to God in the same sense as good deeds, but permissive only [emphasis in original], so that the vocation of Paul is God's work in a much truer sense than the treachery of Judas.'

No reasonable interpretation of the declaration to which Francis has lent the authority of his office can produce anything other than the conclusion that he has endorsed the error that 'all religions [are] more or less good and praiseworthy…' - including Islam, which Pius XI described as 'darkness' along with outright idolatry. Francis has declared that God in His wisdom has willed 'the diversity of religions,' not merely permitted it, despite the reality that the religions invented by men, including Islam, contradict His revelation on innumerable points and teach damnable errors on matters of faith and morals essential to the salvation of souls.

As we see with Francis, the folly of 'interreligious dialogue' requires its Catholic practitioners to embrace the unembraceable, just as Francis embraced the co-signatory of his religiously indifferent declaration in the UAE: none other than 'The Grand Imam of Al-Azhar [the world's foremost institute of Islamic studies]' Ahmed Al-Tayyeb, who is on record as having affirmed the unanimous opinion of Islamic jurists that apostasy from Islam is a crime meriting the death penalty in cases where the apostate threatens Muslim social order. And so it is in the UAE, according to Articles 1 and 66 of its Penal Code, which Francis did not seem to notice in his unstinting praise for the UAE and his absurd veneration of the tomb of its founder while standing alongside Al-Tayyeb.

Indeed, Francis embraced the 'Grand Imam' precisely because the religion Al-Tayyeb represents is false. 'Interreligious dialogue' is a programmatic embrace of the unembraceable, including the veritable anti-Christianity that Muhammed invented. It is an insult to Christ and the Church He founded, in which now even the Vicar of Christ participates, and the greatest perversity amidst a swarm of perversities that constitute the current crisis in the Church.


The Grand Sheikh Francis of al-Vatican

ROBERT SPENCER writes for Jihad Watch -- Pope Francis and the Grand Sheikh of al-Azhar, Ahmed el-Tayeb, have published "A Document On Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together" during the Pope's trip to the United Arab Emirates. It's as filled with falsehoods and wishful thinking as one would expect coming from a practiced deceiver such as el-Tayeb and someone so eager to be deceived as Pope Francis.

Here's one of its egregiously false statements:

'Terrorism is deplorable and threatens the security of people, be they in the East or the West, the North or the South, and disseminates panic, terror and pessimism, but this is not due to religion, even when terrorists instrumentalize it. It is due, rather, to an accumulation of incorrect interpretations of religious texts and to policies linked to hunger, poverty, injustice, oppression and pride. This is why it is so necessary to stop supporting terrorist movements fuelled by financing, the provision of weapons and strategy, and by attempts to justify these movements even using the media. All these must be regarded as international crimes that threaten security and world peace. Such terrorism must be condemned in all its forms and expressions…
Terrorism is due to "an accumulation of incorrect interpretations of religious texts and to policies linked to hunger, poverty, injustice, oppression and pride."

So are the authoritative sources in Sunni Islam, the schools of Sunni jurisprudence (madhahib), all incorrect in their interpretations of the Qur'an and Sunnah? Here is what they say about jihad warfare against non-Muslims:

Shafi'i school: A Shafi'i manual of Islamic law that was certified in 1991 by the clerics at Al-Azhar University, one of the leading authorities in the Islamic world, as a reliable guide to Sunni orthodoxy, stipulates about jihad that "the caliph makes war upon Jews, Christians, and Zoroastrians…until they become Muslim or pay the non-Muslim poll tax." It adds a comment by Sheikh Nuh Ali Salman, a Jordanian expert on Islamic jurisprudence: the caliph wages this war only "provided that he has first invited [Jews, Christians, and Zoroastrians] to enter Islam in faith and practice, and if they will not, then invited them to enter the social order of Islam by paying the non-Muslim poll tax (jizya)…while remaining in their ancestral religions." ('Umdat al-Salik, o9.8).

Of course, there is no caliph today, and hence the oft-repeated claim that Osama et al are waging jihad illegitimately, as no state authority has authorized their jihad. But they explain their actions in terms of defensive jihad, which needs no state authority to call it, and becomes "obligatory for everyone" ('Umdat al-Salik, o9.3) if a Muslim land is attacked. The end of the defensive jihad, however, is not peaceful coexistence with non-Muslims as equals: 'Umdat al-Salik specifies that the warfare against non-Muslims must continue until "the final descent of Jesus." After that, "nothing but Islam will be accepted from them, for taking the poll tax is only effective until Jesus' descent" (o9.8).

Hanafi school: A Hanafi manual of Islamic law repeats the same injunctions. It insists that people must be called to embrace Islam before being fought, "because the Prophet so instructed his commanders, directing them to call the infidels to the faith." It emphasizes that jihad must not be waged for economic gain, but solely for religious reasons: from the call to Islam "the people will hence perceive that they are attacked for the sake of religion, and not for the sake of taking their property, or making slaves of their children, and on this consideration it is possible that they may be induced to agree to the call, in order to save themselves from the troubles of war."

However, "if the infidels, upon receiving the call, neither consent to it nor agree to pay capitation tax [jizya], it is then incumbent on the Muslims to call upon God for assistance, and to make war upon them, because God is the assistant of those who serve Him, and the destroyer of His enemies, the infidels, and it is necessary to implore His aid upon every occasion; the Prophet, moreover, commands us so to do." (Al-Hidayah, II.140)

Maliki school: Ibn Khaldun (1332-1406), a pioneering historian and philosopher, was also a Maliki legal theorist. In his renowned Muqaddimah, the first work of historical theory, he notes that "in the Muslim community, the holy war is a religious duty, because of the universalism of the Muslim mission and (the obligation to) convert everybody to Islam either by persuasion or by force." In Islam, the person in charge of religious affairs is concerned with "power politics," because Islam is "under obligation to gain power over other nations."

Hanbali school: The great medieval theorist of what is commonly known today as radical or fundamentalist Islam, Ibn Taymiyya (Taqi al-Din Ahmad Ibn Taymiyya, 1263-1328), was a Hanbali jurist. He directed that "since lawful warfare is essentially jihad and since its aim is that the religion is God's entirely and God's word is uppermost, therefore according to all Muslims, those who stand in the way of this aim must be fought."

This is also taught by modern-day scholars of Islam. Majid Khadduri was an Iraqi scholar of Islamic law of international renown. In his book War and Peace in the Law of Islam, which was published in 1955 and remains one of the most lucid and illuminating works on the subject, Khadduri says this about jihad:

'The state which is regarded as the instrument for universalizing a certain religion must perforce be an ever expanding state. The Islamic state, whose principal function was to put God's law into practice, sought to establish Islam as the dominant reigning ideology over the entire world….The jihad was therefore employed as an instrument for both the universalization of religion and the establishment of an imperial world state. (P. 51)

Imran Ahsan Khan Nyazee, Assistant Professor on the Faculty of Shari'ah and Law of the International Islamic University in Islamabad. In his 1994 book The Methodology of Ijtihad, he quotes the twelfth century Maliki jurist Ibn Rushd: "Muslim jurists agreed that the purpose of fighting with the People of the Book…is one of two things: it is either their conversion to Islam or the payment of jizyah." Nyazee concludes: "This leaves no doubt that the primary goal of the Muslim community, in the eyes of its jurists, is to spread the word of Allah through jihad, and the option of poll-tax [jizya] is to be exercised only after subjugation" of non-Muslims.

How did someone with incorrect interpretations of religious texts become a professor on the Faculty of Shari'ah and Law at International Islamic University?

Anyway, as for the idea that poverty causes terrorism, it's just a call for Western nations to write more checks to governments of Muslim countries. It's also demonstrably false. The New York Times reported that "not long after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001…Alan B. Krueger, the Princeton economist, tested the widespread assumption that poverty was a key factor in the making of a terrorist. Mr. Krueger's analysis of economic figures, polls, and data on suicide bombers and hate groups found no link between economic distress and terrorism."

CNS News noted in September 2013 that "according to a Rand Corporation report on counterterrorism, prepared for the Office of the Secretary of Defense in 2009, 'Terrorists are not particularly impoverished, uneducated, or afflicted by mental disease. Demographically, their most important characteristic is normalcy (within their environment). Terrorist leaders actually tend to come from relatively privileged backgrounds.' One of the authors of the RAND report, Darcy Noricks, also found that according to a number of academic studies, 'Terrorists turn out to be more rather than less educated than the general population.'"

Yet the analysis that poverty causes terrorism has been applied and reapplied and reapplied again. And now here is the Pope signing on to this falsehood.

Here is another of the statements from the Pope/Tayeb document - one that raises questions about el-Tayeb's sincerity:

'Freedom is a right of every person: each individual enjoys the freedom of belief, thought, expression and action. The pluralism and the diversity of religions, colour, sex, race and language are willed by God in His wisdom, through which He created human beings. This divine wisdom is the source from which the right to freedom of belief and the freedom to be different derives. Therefore, the fact that people are forced to adhere to a certain religion or culture must be rejected, as too the imposition of a cultural way of life that others do not accept…'

Great. But el-Tayeb said this as recently as 2016:

'Contemporary apostasy presents itself in the guise of crimes, assaults, and grand treason, so we deal with it now as a crime that must be opposed and punished….Those learned in Islamic law and the imams of the four schools of jurisprudence consider apostasy a crime and agree that the apostate must either renounce his apostasy or else be killed'.

Has el-Tayeb renounced this view? Doubtful, since it is standard Islam. The death penalty for apostasy is part of Islamic law. It's based on the Qur'an: "They wish you would disbelieve as they disbelieved so you would be alike. So do not take from among them allies until they emigrate for the cause of Allah. But if they turn away, then seize them and kill them wherever you find them and take not from among them any ally or helper." (Qur'an 4:89)

A hadith depicts Muhammad saying: "Whoever changed his Islamic religion, then kill him" (Bukhari 9.84.57). The death penalty for apostasy is part of Islamic law according to all the schools of Islamic jurisprudence.

This is still the position of all the schools of Islamic jurisprudence, both Sunni and Shi'ite. Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the most renowned and prominent Muslim cleric in the world, has stated: "The Muslim jurists are unanimous that apostates must be punished, yet they differ as to determining the kind of punishment to be inflicted upon them. The majority of them, including the four main schools of jurisprudence (Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi'i, and Hanbali) as well as the other four schools of jurisprudence (the four Shiite schools of Az-Zaidiyyah, Al-Ithna-'ashriyyah, Al-Ja'fariyyah, and Az-Zaheriyyah) agree that apostates must be executed."

Qaradawi also once famously said: "If they had gotten rid of the apostasy punishment, Islam wouldn't exist today."

So has el-Tayeb departed from Islamic orthodoxy, or is he deceiving Pope Francis and trying to deceive the world?

The Pope is certainly thoroughly deceived. Back in the Vatican from the UAE, he told crowds: "Despite the diversity of cultures and traditions, the Christian and Islamic worlds appreciate and protect common values: life, family, religious sense, honor for the elderly, the education of the young, and others as well."

Life? Yes, unless you're not Muslim. In Islamic law, Muslim lives are explicitly worth more than those of non-Muslims. The Shafi'i Sharia manual Reliance of the Traveller dictates: "The indemnity for the death or injury of a woman is one-half the indemnity paid for a man. The indemnity paid for a Jew or Christian is one-third the indemnity paid for a Muslim. The indemnity paid for a Zoroastrian is one-fifteenth that of a Muslim." (o4.9) Sikhs rank even lower, as they are not People of the Book.

The Shafi'i madhhab is not the only school of Islamic law that teaches this. The Iranian Shi'ite Sufi Sheikh Sultanhussein Tabandeh explains: "Thus if [a] Muslim commits adultery his punishment is 100 lashes, the shaving of his head, and one year of banishment. But if the man is not a Muslim and commits adultery with a Muslim woman his penalty is execution…Similarly if a Muslim deliberately murders another Muslim he falls under the law of retaliation and must by law be put to death by the next of kin. But if a non-Muslim who dies at the hand of a Muslim has by lifelong habit been a non-Muslim, the penalty of death is not valid. Instead the Muslim murderer must pay a fine and be punished with the lash….Since Islam regards non-Muslims as on a lower level of belief and conviction, if a Muslim kills a non-Muslim…then his punishment must not be the retaliatory death, since the faith and conviction he possesses is loftier than that of the man slain…Again, the penalties of a non-Muslim guilty of fornication with a Muslim woman are augmented because, in addition to the crime against morality, social duty and religion, he has committed sacrilege, in that he has disgraced a Muslim and thereby cast scorn upon the Muslims in general, and so must be executed….Islam and its peoples must be above the infidels, and never permit non-Muslims to acquire lordship over them."

Family? Sure: a husband and his wife and his wife and his wife and his wife. Polygamy dehumanizes women. The Qur'an also calls for the beating of disobedient women (4:34), and Islam devalues women in numerous other ways.

The Pope has been played for a fool by deceptive sharpies including, but not limited to, Ahmed el-Tayeb.

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

 

Update -- Papal theologian never saw final draft of document, contrary to Pope’s claims

DIANE MONTAGNA reports from Rome for LifeSiteNews — Informed sources have confirmed that the papal theologian, Dominican Father Wojciech Giertych, was consulted but did not see the final draft of the controversial “Document on Human Fraternity” that Pope Francis signed this week with a Grand Imam.

The news, reported by the National Catholic Register on Wednesday, runs contrary to Pope Francis’s claim that the papal theologian “officially” read and “approved” the document, which even some within the Vatican are calling “heretical.”

The Pope came under fire early this week for signing the “Document on Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together” with Sheik Ahmad el-Tayeb, Grand Imam of Cairo’s al-Azhar Mosque, during an interreligious meeting in Abu Dhabi on Feb. 4.

The document incited controversy among Christians for asserting that “the pluralism and the diversity of religions” are “willed by God in His wisdom” – a statement many believe contravenes the Catholic Faith.

While some have sought to downplay the controversial passage, saying it must be read in context, one Dominican has argued that “in its obvious sense [the statement] is false, and in fact heretical.” A respected Catholic historian has also said it “overturns” the Gospel.

Who approved it?

During an inflight press conference on his return from Abu Dhabi, Pope Francis sought to allay concerns over the document, telling reporters: “I want to say one thing and repeat it clearly: from the Catholic point of view, the document did not go one millimeter beyond the Second Vatican Council. It’s even cited there several times. Nothing. The document was done in the spirit of Vatican II.”

The Pope continued: “Before taking the decision” to finalize the document, “I had some theologians read it, and also officially the Theologian of the Papal Household, who is a Dominican with the beautiful Dominican tradition — not to go on a witch hunt but to see where the right thing is. And he approved it.”

The current Theologian of the Papal Household, Father Wojciech Giertych, O.P., was appointed by Pope Benedict XVI in 2005. The post, which has been held by Dominicans since the Middle Ages, is tasked with providing advice to the Pope on theological issues, as well as checking papal texts for theological clarity.

In light of news that Fr. Giertych never saw the final draft, several questions arise: Who are the other “theologians” who read and counselled the Pope the document? Was the papal theologian’s advice heeded, and if so, to what extent? And if he did not see and approve the final draft, who did?

On his return from Abu Dhabi, Pope Francis said the document “was prepared with much reflection and prayer,” adding that “both the Grand Imam with his team, and me with mine, prayed a lot in order to make this document.” He added that it took almost a year to write. “It needed to ripen, to remain somewhat confidential,” he said, “so as not to give birth to the child before the proper time.”

Pope Francis told reporters that “if someone feels bad” about the document, he “understand[s].”

“It’s not an everyday thing, and it’s not a step backwards. It’s a step forward that comes from 50 years ago, from the Council that must unfold and develop. Historians say that it takes 100 years for a Council to take root in the Church. We’re halfway there.”

The Pope said he can also understand how the “Document on Human Fraternity” might seem shocking to some. “It happened to me, too,” he said. “I read a sentence, and I said to myself: This sentence is a little … I don’t know if it’s sure. Instead, it was a phrase from the Council! It surprised me, too.”

This is not the first time Pope Francis has argued that an apparently “new” (and what some consider heterodox) teaching is actually a “development of doctrine.”

When he changed the Catechism of the Catholic Church on the death penalty (n. 2267), Francis said the new wording “expresses the progress of the doctrine of the most recent pontiffs as well as the change in the conscience of the Christian people, which rejects a penalty that seriously harms human dignity.”

And when Amoris Laetitia was presented at the Vatican, its new teaching on Communion for divorced and civilly remarried Catholics was described as an “organic development” in the spirit of Blessed John Henry Newman.

Responding to the Pope’s inflight remarks on his return from Abu Dhabi, an anonymous Dominican told LifeSite: “With respect, the Pope needs to remember that his duty is not to conform only to the teaching of Vatican II, but also to that of all the councils.”

“Moreover,” the theologian added, “nothing in Vatican II states that non-Catholic religions are willed by God, so when Pope Francis tells us that nothing in his Document on Fraternity goes beyond Vatican II, he is telling us something that is not true.”

 

The “Ark of Fraternity” and Christian Charity

R de MatteiROBERTO de MATTEI writes for LifeSiteNews -- The logo for Pope Francis’s journey to the United Arab Emirates depicts a dove with an olive branch. During an interreligious meeting in Abu Dhabi, the Pope explained that the image “recalls the story – present in different religious traditions – of the primordial flood. The Pope told Muslim leaders: “According to the biblical account, in order to preserve humanity from destruction, God asked Noah to enter the ark along with his family. Today, we too in the name of God, in order to safeguard peace, need to enter together as one family into an ark which can sail the stormy seas of the world: the ark of fraternity.”

According to this reading, Noah’s Ark is an ark of fraternity in which men of different religions live together, because God himself has willed religious pluralism. In fact, in the Document on Human Fraternity which the Pope signed with Ahmad el-Tayeb, Grand Imam of Egypt’s al-Azhar Mosque, he said: “The pluralism and the diversity of religions, color, sex, race and language are willed by God in His wisdom, through which He created human beings.”

This reading seems to overturn the doctrine of the Gospel. In fact, the Ark which Noah by divine command built before the Flood, as a refuge for himself, his family and all animal species (Gen. 6:13-22), is presented by St. Paul as a refuge of salvation for believers and a sign of perdition for the world (Heb. 11:7). Catholic Tradition has therefore always seen in Noah’s Ark the symbol of the Church, outside of which there is no salvation (cf. S. Ambrose, De Noe et Arca, 6. 9, in Migne, Patrologia Latina, vol. 14, coll. 368-374, and Hugo von Hurter, De arca Noe Ecclesiae typo Patrum sententiae, dans Sanctorum Patrum opuscula selecta, III, Innsbruck 1868, pp. 217-233).

This is why the Church has the mission of preserving and spreading the Catholic Faith. Our Lord said to the Apostles: “Go into all the world and preach the Gospel to the whole creation. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned” (Mk 16:16). And the Apostle to the Gentiles stresses: “There is one Lord, one faith, one Baptism” (Eph. 4:5).

It is a dogma of faith proclaimed by the Fourth Lateran Council, under Innocent III, that “there is indeed one universal Church of the faithful, outside of which absolutely no one can be saved.”The principle “nulla salus extra Ecclesiam” does not exclude from salvation those who are outside the Church as a result of invincible error, but they are ordered to her at least through an implicit desire. However, they lack the assurance of salvation and the ordinary means to attain it. This truth of faith was confirmed by Gregory XVI (Mirari Vos of August 15, 1832); Pius IX (Singulari quidem, of March 17, 1856 to the bishops of Austria); and Leo XIII (Satis cognitum of June 29, 1896), among others. Pius XI, in his encyclical Mortalium animos of January 6, 1928, explains, in turn that, in the field of faith, fraternal unity cannot be achieved in the same way as in the political sphere. To subordinate the truth of faith to fraternity means to profess religious indifferentism, which has constantly been condemned by the universal Magisterium of the Church.

“Fraternity,” together with Liberty and Equality, is instead one of the founding principles of the French Revolution. The revolutionary trinomial boils down to a system of relations in which there is no transcendent principle to refer to, and the three supreme values, each considered as an absolute, necessarily come into conflict with the other. In the absence of a higher end, fraternity — far from constituting an element of cohesion in society — becomes the source of its disintegration. If men in fact, in the name of fraternity, are forced to live together without an end that gives meaning to their sense of belonging, the “Ark” becomes a prison, and fraternity — imposed in words — is destined to capsize in a centrifugal thrust towards fragmentation and chaos.

The simple affirmation of fraternal coexistence is not able to justify sacrifice, which is the highest expression of love for one’s neighbor; and this is because sacrifice implies renunciation of a real good for the sake of higher goods; but fraternity does not propose any higher good that is worthy of sacrifice, beyond coexistence, which is not a value but is only a meaningless fact. The myth of fraternity actually conceals the deepest social egoism and represents the antithesis of Christian charity, which is the only true foundation of social relations between men.

Fraternity is also a dogma of Freemasonry, which in its ideology and rituals offers a parody of Christian doctrine and liturgy. It is no coincidence that the Grand Lodge of Spain, with this tweet, thanked Pope Francis for his Message of December 25, 2018, “Todos los masones del mundo se unen a la petición del Papa por ‘la fraternidad entre personas de diversas religions’ [“All the Freemasons of the world join the Pope’s request for ‘fraternity between people of different religions.’”]


[en.news / FP Jihad Watch] 2267.1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


CF NEWS

Cardinal Müller issues Manifesto: A quasi correction of Pope Francis’ pontificate

JOHN-HENRY WESTON and MAIKE HICKSON report for LifeSiteNews – Cardinal Gerhard Müller, the former head of the Vatican’s doctrinal office, has released a Manifesto which reads like a correction of many of the doctrinal errors Pope Francis has taught during his tenure as Pope.

The cardinal's intention was to release the manifesto on February 10. That date is the eve of the anniversary of Pope Benedict’s announcement in 2013 that he would abdicate his papal office, as well as the eve of the cardinal's own ordination to the priesthood. However, a Polish website broke the embargo and thus the document is now being released.

Pope Francis removed Cardinal Müller from his post as head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith in 2017 after he had served in that capacity since he was appointed by Pope Benedict in 2012.

In the manifesto, Cardinal Müller does not mention the Pope but says that he was asked to make a public testimony of the truth “in the face of growing confusion about the doctrine of the Faith.”

The manifesto was released in the wake of Pope Francis’ highly controversial joint document with an Islamic leader which says that “the pluralism and the diversity of religions” are “willed by God in His wisdom” – a statement many believe contravenes the Catholic Faith.

Cardinal Müller takes a contrary stand when he says in the Manifesto:

The distinction of the three persons in the divine unity (CCC 254) marks a fundamental difference in the belief in God and the image of man from that of other religions. Religions disagree precisely over this belief in Jesus the Christ. … Therefore, the first letter of John refers to one who denies His divinity as an antichrist (1 John 2:22), since Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is from eternity one in being with God, His Father (CCC 663).

The cardinal is releasing his manifesto to a worldwide audience, in seven different languages, thus allowing for a widespread affirmation of the orthodox Catholic faith.

To this end, LifeSite is hosting a petition at its LifePetitions platform so the Catholic clergy and faithful of the world, in all language groups, can make a visible sign of their support for the full and unvarnished faith and for the Cardinal’s initiative.

Petition


Providing clarity on the Church's view of Islam, Cardinal Müller rejects the Muslim view that sees Christ as a prophet, rather than the Messiah. “We are to resist the relapse into ancient heresies with clear resolve, which saw in Jesus Christ only a good person, brother and friend, prophet and moralist,” the Manifesto says.

The Manifesto also addresses several other points which can be seen as corrections of Pope Francis including the impermissibility of Holy Communion for divorced and remarried Catholics as well as that for Protestants; the eternity of hell; the ban on female priests; and priestly celibacy.

The Manifesto says “divorced and civilly remarried persons, whose sacramental marriage exists before God, as well as those Christians who are not in full communion with the Catholic Faith and the Church” are “not disposed to receive the Holy Eucharist fruitfully (CCC 1457), because it does not bring them to salvation.”

The Manifesto adds, “Therefore, the Holy Scripture admonishes with regard to the reception of the Holy Communion: ‘Whoever eats unworthily of the bread and drinks from the Lord's cup makes himself guilty of profaning the body and of the blood of the Lord’ (1 Cor 11:27).”

In his Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia Pope Francis wrote “no one can be condemned forever, because that is not the logic of the Gospel” and in interviews he went so far as to suggest that those who want no part of God are annihilated rather than in hell.

Quoting the Catechism of the Catholic Church, Cardinal Müller attests, “He who dies in mortal sin without repentance will be forever separated from God (CCC 1033).” The Manifesto says, “The eternity of the punishment of hell is a terrible reality, which - according to the testimony of Holy Scripture - attracts all who ‘die in the state of mortal sin’ (CCC 1035).”

“To keep silent about these and the other truths of the Faith and to teach people accordingly is the greatest deception against which the Catechism vigorously warns,” says the Cardinal. “It represents the last trial of the Church and leads man to a religious delusion, ‘the price of their apostasy’ (CCC 675); it is the fraud of Antichrist.”

The Pope’s recent opening to a non-celibate priesthood and winking at female ordination also seems to be covered, as the Manifesto says, “priests voluntarily opt for celibacy as ‘a sign of new life’ (CCC 1579).” The Church, says Cardinal Müller, is “bound by the choice made by the Lord Himself. That is why it is not possible to ordain women (CCC 1577).” The Cardinal adds: “To imply that this impossibility is somehow a form of discrimination against women shows only the lack of understanding for this sacrament, which is not about earthly power but the representation of Christ, the Bridegroom of the Church.”

Furthermore, Cardinal Müller also restates the inseparable link between the Faith and the moral law which needs to be followed “to do good and reach this goal [of promised blessedness],” and he points to certain parts of the Church's moral teaching “which are often ignored today.” Here, he references several parts of the Catechism's moral teaching “which may not be relativized” without quoting them explicitly. Among them are such statements as “Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception” (no. 2270) and the explicit rejection of the following grave sins: abortion (no. 2271), contraception (no. 2370), euthanasia (no. 2277), suicide (no. 2280), cohabitation outside of marriage (no. 2350), masturbation (no. 2352), fornication (no. 2353), pornography (no. 2354), and adultery (no. 2380-2381). Cardinal Müller also explicitly references those parts of the Catechism (no. 2357-2359) which describe “homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity” and “intrinsically disordered” and which call upon homosexual persons to live in “chastity.”

While he never mentions Pope Francis by name, the Manifesto’s criticisms are so pointed they leave little doubt about the identity of at least one of the intended members of the hierarchy Cardinal Müller hopes to correct. “The admonition of the Apostle is still valid today, that cursed is anyone who proclaims another gospel, ‘even if we ourselves were to give it or an angel from heaven’ (Gal 1:8),” the Manifesto reads. “The mediation of faith is inextricably bound up with the human credibility of its messengers, who in some cases have abandoned the people entrusted to them, unsettling them and severely damaging their faith.”

 

Read Cardinal Müller's entire Manifesto in English below

 

Manifesto of Faith

“Let not your heart be troubled!” (John 14:1)

In the face of growing confusion about the doctrine of the Faith, many bishops, priests, religious and lay people of the Catholic Church have requested that I make a public testimony about the truth of revelation. It is the shepherds' very own task to guide those entrusted to them on the path of salvation. This can only succeed if they know this way and follow it themselves. The words of the Apostle here apply: “For above all I have delivered unto you what I have received” (1 Cor. 15:3). Today, many Christians are no longer even aware of the basic teachings of the Faith, so there is a growing danger of missing the path to eternal life. However, it remains the very purpose of the Church to lead humanity to Jesus Christ, the light of the peoples (see LG 1). In this situation, the question of orientation arises. According to John Paul II, the Catechism of the Catholic Church is a “safe standard for the doctrine of the faith” (Fidei Depositum IV). It was written with the aim of strengthening the Faith of the brothers and sisters whose belief has been massively questioned by the “dictatorship of relativism.”[1]

1. The one and triune God revealed in Jesus Christ

The epitome of the Faith of all Christians is found in the confession of the Most Holy Trinity. We have become disciples of Jesus, children and friends of God by being baptized in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. The distinction of the three persons in the divine unity (CCC 254) marks a fundamental difference in the belief in God and the image of man from that of other religions. Religions disagree precisely over this belief in Jesus the Christ. He is true God and true Man, conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. The Word made flesh, the Son of God, is the only Savior of the world (CCC 679) and the only Mediator between God and men (CCC 846). Therefore, the first letter of John refers to one who denies His divinity as an antichrist (1 John 2:22), since Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is from eternity one in being with God, His Father (CCC 663). We are to resist the relapse into ancient heresies with clear resolve, which saw in Jesus Christ only a good person, brother and friend, prophet and moralist. He is first and foremost the Word that was with God and is God, the Son of the Father, Who assumed our human nature to redeem us and Who will come to judge the living and the dead. Him alone, we worship in unity with the Father and the Holy Spirit as the Only and True God (CCC 691).

2. The Church

Jesus Christ founded the Church as a visible sign and tool of salvation realized in the Catholic Church (816). He gave His Church, which “emerged from the side of the Christ who died on the Cross” (766), a sacramental constitution that will remain until the Kingdom is fully achieved (CCC 765). Christ, the Head, and the faithful as members of the body, are a mystical person (CCC 795), which is why the Church is sacred, for the one Mediator has designed and sustained its visible structure (CCC 771). Through it the redemptive work of Christ becomes present in time and space via the celebration of the Holy Sacraments, especially in the Eucharistic Sacrifice, the Holy Mass (CCC 1330). The Church conveys with the authority of Christ the divine revelation, which extends to all the elements of doctrine, “including the moral teaching, without which the saving truths of the faith cannot be preserved, explained, and observed” (CCC 2035).

3. Sacramental Order

The Church is the universal sacrament of salvation in Jesus Christ (CCC 776). She does not reflect herself, but the light of Christ, which shines on her face. But this happens only when the truth revealed in Jesus Christ becomes the point of reference, rather than the views of a majority or the spirit of the times; for Christ Himself has entrusted the fullness of grace and truth to the Catholic Church (CCC 819), and He Himself is present in the sacraments of the Church.

The Church is not a man-made association whose structure its members voted into being at their will. It is of divine origin. "Christ himself is the author of ministry in the Church. He set her up, gave her authority and mission, orientation and goal (CCC 874). The admonition of the Apostle is still valid today, that cursed is anyone who proclaims another gospel, “even if we ourselves were to give it or an angel from heaven” (Gal 1:8). The mediation of faith is inextricably bound up with the human credibility of its messengers, who in some cases have abandoned the people entrusted to them, unsettling them and severely damaging their faith. Here the Word of Scripture describes those who do not listen to the truth and who follow their own wishes, who flatter their ears because they cannot endure sound doctrine (cf. 2 Tim 4:3-4).

The task of the Magisterium of the Church is to “preserve God’s people from deviations and defections” in order to “guarantee them the objective possibility of professing the true faith without error” (890). This is especially true with regard to all seven sacraments. The Holy Eucharist is “source and summit of the Christian life” (CCC 1324). The Eucharistic Sacrifice, in which Christ includes us in His Sacrifice of the Cross, is aimed at the most intimate union with Him (CCC 1382). Therefore, the Holy Scripture admonishes with regard to the reception of the Holy Communion: “Whoever eats unworthily of the bread and drinks from the Lord's cup makes himself guilty of profaning the body and of the blood of the Lord” (1 Cor 11:27). “Anyone conscious of a grave sin must receive the sacrament of Reconciliation before coming to communion” (CCC 1385). From the internal logic of the sacrament, it is understood that divorced and civilly remarried persons, whose sacramental marriage exists before God, as well as those Christians who are not in full communion with the Catholic Faith and the Church, just as all those who are not disposed to receive the Holy Eucharist fruitfully (CCC 1457), because it does not bring them to salvation. To point this out corresponds to the spiritual works of mercy.

The confession of sins in Holy Confession at least once a year is one of the Church’s commandments (CCC 2042). When the believers no longer confess their sins and no longer experience the absolution of their sins, salvation becomes impossible; after all, Jesus Christ became Man to redeem us from our sins. The power of forgiveness that the Risen Lord has given to the Apostles and their successors in the ministry of bishops and priests applies also for mortal and venial sins which we commit after Baptism. The current popular practice of confession makes it clear that the conscience of the faithful is not sufficiently formed. God's mercy is given to us, that we might fulfil His Commandments to become one with His Holy Will, and not so as to avoid the call to repentance (CCC 1458).

“The priest continues the work of redemption on earth” (CCC 1589). The ordination of the priest “gives him a sacred power” (CCC 1592), which is irreplaceable, because through it Jesus becomes sacramentally present in His saving action. Therefore, priests voluntarily opt for celibacy as "a sign of new life" (CCC 1579). It is about the self-giving in the service of Christ and His coming kingdom. With a view to receiving the ordination in the three stages of this ministry, the Church is “bound by the choice made by the Lord Himself. That is why it is not possible to ordain women”(CCC 1577). To imply that this impossibility is somehow a form of discrimination against women shows only the lack of understanding for this sacrament, which is not about earthly power but the representation of Christ, the Bridegroom of the Church.

4. Moral Law

Faith and life are inseparable, for Faith apart from works is dead (CCC 1815). The moral law is the work of divine wisdom and leads man to the promised blessedness (CCC 1950). Consequently, the "knowledge of the divine and natural law is necessary" to do good and reach this goal (CCC 1955). Accepting this truth is essential for all people of good will. For he who dies in mortal sin without repentance will be forever separated from God (CCC 1033). This leads to practical consequences in the lives of Christians, which are often ignored today (cf 2270-2283; 2350-2381). The moral law is not a burden, but part of that liberating truth (cf Jn 8:32) through which the Christian walks on the path of salvation and which may not be relativized.

5. Eternal Life

Many wonder today what purpose the Church still has in its existence, when even bishops prefer to be politicians rather than to proclaim the Gospel as teachers of the Faith. The role of the Church must not be watered down by trivialities, but its proper place must be addressed. Every human being has an immortal soul, which in death is separated from the body, hoping for the resurrection of the dead (CCC 366). Death makes man's decision for or against God definite. Everyone has to face the particular judgement immediately after death (CCC 1021). Either a purification is necessary, or man goes directly into heavenly bliss and is allowed to see God face to face. There is also the dreadful possibility that a person will remain opposed to God to the very end, and by definitely refusing His Love, "condemns himself immediately and forever" (CCC 1022). “God created us without us, but He did not want to save us without us” (CCC 1847). The eternity of the punishment of hell is a terrible reality, which - according to the testimony of Holy Scripture - attracts all who “die in the state of mortal sin” (CCC 1035). The Christian goes through the narrow gate, for “the gate is wide, and the way that leads to ruin is wide, and many are upon it” (Mt 7:13).

To keep silent about these and the other truths of the Faith and to teach people accordingly is the greatest deception against which the Catechism vigorously warns. It represents the last trial of the Church and leads man to a religious delusion, “the price of their apostasy” (CCC 675); it is the fraud of Antichrist. “He will deceive those who are lost by all means of injustice; for they have closed themselves to the love of the truth by which they should be saved” (2 Thess 2:10).

Call

As workers in the vineyard of the Lord, we all have a responsibility to recall these fundamental truths by clinging to what we ourselves have received. We want to give courage to go the way of Jesus Christ with determination, in order to obtain eternal life by following His commandments (CCC 2075).

Let us ask the Lord to let us know how great the gift of the Catholic Faith is, through which opens the door to eternal life. “For he that shall be ashamed of me, and of my words, in this adulterous and sinful generation: The Son of Man also will be ashamed of him, when He shall come in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.” (Mark 8:38). Therefore, we are committed to strengthening the Faith by confessing the truth which is Jesus Christ Himself.

We too, and especially we bishops and priests, are addressed when Paul, the Apostle of Jesus Christ, gives this admonition to his companion and successor, Timothy: “I charge thee, before God and Jesus Christ, Who shall judge the living and the dead, by His coming, and His kingdom: Preach the word: be instant in season, out of season: reprove, entreat, rebuke in all patience and doctrine. For there shall be a time, when they will not endure sound doctrine; but, according to their own desires, they will heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears: And will indeed turn away their hearing from the truth, but will be turned unto fables. But be thou vigilant, labour in all things, do the work of an evangelist, fulfil thy ministry. Be sober.” (2 Tim 4:1-5).

May Mary, the Mother of God, implore for us the grace to remain faithful without wavering to the confession of the truth about Jesus Christ.

United in faith and prayer

Gerhard Cardinal Müller

Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith 2012-2017

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CF NEWS

Cardinal Schönborn: 'Married' homosexuals give 'witness that marriage is an important good'

Cdl SchonbornMAIKE HICKSON reports for LifeSiteNews -- In a new interview, Vienna Cardinal Christoph Schönborn says that he is 'moved' by the yearning of homosexual couples for marriage. He also admits that 'I often ask God' whether celibacy matters that much to Jesus. Additionally, he admits that in the 1960s, 'my heart was beating on the left.'

Speaking on January 31 with the German magazine Stern, Cardinal Schönborn makes it clear that the Catholic Church is tolerantly accepting that the state is allowing homosexual couples to enter civil 'marriages.'

'To be honest, we have accepted it already for a long time,' he explains. But he requests that 'we define it differently and that we raise our voice when we believe that this path for the whole of society is not good.'

'We may enter into the discussion, too,' the Austrian prelate states.

When asked what he says to homosexual couples who wish to promise each other loyalty, Cardinal Schönborn responds: 'I personally am moved that, at a time where marriage is losing its attraction, those couples who feel and live out a same-sex attraction yearn to have thus the highest form of partnership.' In his eyes, these couples thereby give 'witness that marriage is an important good.'

Cardinal Schönborn also tells his interviewer that he doubted the Faith many times during the 'difficult years between 1965 and 1968' when in Germany 'everything went topsy-turvy.'

'I am a member of the '68 generation,' he adds.

When asked whether Jesus really puts so much importance on celibacy, Schönborn responds: 'I often ask Him that.'

'I do not receive a clear answer,' Schönborn says. 'But Jesus says very clearly: 'Do not be afraid!' In his speeches, he stressed that one should not place traditions higher than His crucial sentence: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.''

The Austrian prelate adds, 'as long as traditions are more important than the joy of the Gospels, He would say that we do not have the right balance.'

Speaking about the clerical sex abuse crisis and the upcoming February abuse summit in Rome, Cardinal Schönborn admits past mistakes and insists that now the 'most important thing is to develop a consciousness,' to 'start processes,' and to 'find a path together.'

'One may not expect miracles now,' he says. The prelate, speaking about Pope Francis, says that this abuse crisis now 'is, without doubt, the greatest challenge for him and for the whole Church.' It would be a bad message - against the glad tidings of the Gospels - 'if this [scandal] is not being cleared up and addressed.'

In recent months, Cardinal Schönborn has come under pressure after it came to light that, for more than 10 years, he knew about financial misconduct and episcopal moral problems in the Diocese of Gurk-Klagenfurt.

Schönborn is now being accused of having helped cover up these misdeeds of his friend and fellow bishop, whom he still praised highly as of July 2018.

There is currently an Apostolic Visitation taking place in Klagenfurt in order to examine the state of the diocese.

Additionally, at the end of 2018, Cardinal Schönborn received international criticism for hosting a rock concert in his cathedral in Vienna. During that concert, a prominent actor sang shirtless while standing on the Communion rail.

In August 2018, Schönborn explained that he could imagine future female priests and bishops, and in October 2018, the Austrian prelate claimed, 'I may one day also ordain women to the diaconate.'

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CF NEWS

Another, very clever, dubium is launched

CHRISTOPHER A. FERRARA reports for Fatima Perspectives -- As this pontificate disintegrates into a heap of scandals — financial, moral and doctrinal — the faithful are reduced to petitioning Francis to clarify whether he actually believes what the Church teaches on basic questions of morality, as to which he speaks incessantly of “accompaniment” and “discernment” but never simply obedience to the divine commandments.

Now a new organization called the Coalition of Saint Athanasius (COSA) has published an Open Letter to Pope Francis concerning the Church’s teaching on homosexuality not unlike the dubia published by the four cardinals concerning Amoris Laetitia (Carlo Caffarra, Raymond Burke, Walter Brandmüller and Joachim Meisner, of whom only Brandmüller and Burke are still alive).

The Letter, entitled “What Does the Catholic Church Teach About Homosexual Acts?” is cleverly subtitled “A Coalition of Catholic Media Defends LGBT Right to Know.” Thus does COSA aim the loaded term “LGBT” directly at a Pope who, as CNN notes, speaks matter-of-factly of “gay persons” as if God had created such a category of humanity. The people whom the Pope benignly identifies as “gay” do indeed have a right to know what even CNN wants to know: “What does the Pope really think about homosexuality?”

Accordingly, the Letter poses these questions to Francis:

[] Do you, Pope Francis, believe that homosexual acts are “acts of grave depravity,” as the Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches?

[] Do you, Pope Francis, believe that homosexual acts are “intrinsically disordered,” as the Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches?

[] Do you, Pope Francis, believe that homosexual acts are “contrary to natural law,” as the Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches?

[] Do you, Pope Francis, believe that homosexual acts can “under no circumstances be approved,” as the Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches?

As the Letter rightly observes, under the new regime ushered in by Amoris Laetitia, we the laity “find ourselves upholding doctrines that no longer seem of consequence even to our shepherds, confessing sins our confessors tell us are sins no longer, and observing prohibitions of the moral law our co-religionists insist a Merciful God would never enforce.”

Mortal sins, the Letter continues, “today are so seldom warned against from the pulpit as to be understandably forgotten in the pew.” Sodomy in particular is one of the “peccata clamantia… considered so terrible in the eyes of God as to cry to Heaven for vengeance.” Yet today “that same sin has lost its social and moral stigma to such an extent that ‘rainbow Masses’ are commonplace and the Catholic priesthood itself has been labeled a ‘gay profession.’”

Meanwhile, under Francis, the “Mother Church [that] did not hesitate to rescue her children, today … professes a preference to accompany them. But to where?”

To where indeed? The authors of the Letter query Francis on how a refusal to tell people afflicted by homosexuality the truth about their intrinsic disorder and the eternal consequences of acting in accordance with it “does not constitute a merciless injustice to the LBGT community which, by the way, never cease quoting your own words on their behalf: Who am I to judge?”

COSA, therefore, seeks an answer to the basic objection this pontificate and its novelties have brought to the fore — with no answer yet from the very author of those novelties: “If even the most grievous of sins can become non-sins merely with the passage of time and change in human attitudes, then ultimately what happens to the very idea of sin, the Ten Commandments of God, the theology of heaven and hell, the particular and general judgments? If there is no sin then what is the point of practicing virtue or frequenting the Sacraments?”

The rest of the Letter merits a careful reading, but its essence is this: Instead of leading them on with coy rhetoric, Francis the Vicar of Christ has a duty — a paramount duty — to tell people afflicted by the homosexual condition the truth they need to know for the salvation of their souls: “All men and women on earth — but especially those who identify as homosexual — have a right before God to know the truth. They await your answer, as do we. Please hear us and be assured of our continued prayers for the healing and unity of Christ’s suffering Church.”

Francis will, of course, decline to answer. He will ignore COSA’s appeal just as he ignored the four dubia cardinals. The authors of the Letter know this. But the Letter is more than just a vain provocation. Francis’ silence will be another warning to all who have not yet awakened to the reality that Philip Lawler has courageously admitted: “the current Pope’s leadership has become a danger to the faith…”

Yes, COSA’s appeal to an “LGBT Right to Know” is clever, perhaps even cunning. But here the authors are only following the counsel of Scripture in responding to a threat to the cause of the Gospel: “Be ye therefore wise as serpents and simple as doves.” (Matt. 10:16)

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CF NEWS

Ex-Cardinal McCarrick may be defrocked next week
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M ARTIN M. BARILLAS reports for LifeSiteNews
- Unnamed officials at the Vatican have told Reuters that the Vatican will decide next week on discipline for the former cardinal Theodore McCarrick over allegations of sexual abuse.

Unnamed sources had previously told Reuters that McCarrick’s faculties as a priest will be removed, thus making the former Archbishop of Washington the most senior cleric to be so disciplined in nearly 100 years.

On Thursday, Cardinal Luis Francisco Ladaria, who leads the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF), met with Pope Francis. While Cardinal Ladaria wouldissue a ruling on McCarrick, it is the pope who wilave to approve any decision about the American cleric’s fate.

The development comes just two weeks before the highly-anticipated summit organized by Pope Francis on the “Protection of Minors in the Church,” which has garnered criticism. Bishop Athanasius Schneider of Kazakhstan, for example, told LifeSiteNews that the summit is “doomed to failure” if it does not focus on the “predominant role of homosexual behavior in the clerical sexual abuse cases…” The heads of the various bishops’ conferences will meet at the Vatican for the conference, which is being led by Cardinal Blase Cupich of Chicago.

Allegations against McCarrick, 88, date back decades while he was a rising figure in the Church’s hierarchy in the United States. He served as archbishop of Washington D.C. from 2001 to 2006. Currently living at a friary in Kansas, McCarrick’s resignation from the College of Cardinals was accepted by Pope Francis in July 2018. McCarrick was ordered by the pope to refrain from public ministry and to live in seclusion, prayer and penitence.

McCarrick has responded to just one of the various allegations against him by survivors of sexual abuse, including seminarians. According to McCarrick, he has “absolutely no recollection” of sexual abuse of a 16-year-old boy that allegedly occurred more than five decades ago. Several priests and former priests have alleged that he abused his authority to force them to sleep in his bed while they were studying for the priesthood.

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CF NEWS

Bishop Athanasius Schneider : Christian faith is the only God-willed religion

REMNANT Editor’s Note: On February 4, 2019, Pope Francis signed a joint statement with Ahmad el-Tayeb, Grand Imam of Egypt’s al-Azhar Mosque, in which it was agreed that “pluralism and diversity of religions” are “willed by God”: “The pluralism and the diversity of religions, colour, sex, race and language are willed by God in His wisdom, through which He created human beings. This divine wisdom is the source from which the right to freedom of belief and the freedom to be different derives.” - The “Document on Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together.” While we are in no position to speak to Bishop Athanasius Schneider's motivation in writing and sending us this excellent article, we are nevertheless most grateful to post what, in the wake of recent events, amounts to an urgent clarification of the constant teaching of the Church. In these difficult days of confusion, we remain ever grateful to His Excellency for his pastoral guidance. MJM


Bp. SchneiderTHE TRUTH of the filial adoption in Christ, which is intrinsically supernatural, constitutes the synthesis of the entire Divine Revelation. Being adopted by God as sons is always a gratuitous gift of grace, the most sublime gift of God to mankind. One obtains it, however, only through a personal faith in Christ and through the reception of baptism, as the Lord himself taught: “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, 'You must be born again.” (John 3: 5-7).

In the past decades one often heard - even from the mouth of some representatives of the Church’s hierarchy - statements about the theory of “anonymous Christians.” This theory says the following: The mission of the Church in the world would consist ultimately in raising the awareness that all men must have of their salvation in Christ and consequently of their filial adoption in Christ. Since, according to the same theory, every human being possesses already the sonship of God in the depth of his personality. Yet, such a theory contradicts directly Divine Revelation, as Christ taught it and His Apostles and the Church over two thousand years always transmitted it unchangingly and without a shadow of a doubt.

In his essay “The Church, consisting of Jews and Gentiles” (Die Kirche aus Juden und Heiden) Erik Peterson, the well-known convert and exegete, long since (in 1933) warned against the danger of such a theory, when he affirmed that one cannot reduce being a Christian (“Christsein”) to the natural order, in which the fruits of the redemption achieved by Jesus Christ would be generally imputed to every human being as a kind of heritage, solely because he would share human nature with the incarnated Word. However, filial adoption in Christ is not an automatic result, guaranteed through belonging to the human race.

Saint Athanasius (cf. Oratio contra Arianos II, 59) left us a simple and at the same time an apt explanation of the difference between the natural state of men as God’s creatures and the glory of being a son of God in Christ. Saint Athanasius derives his explanation from the words of the holy Gospel according to John, that say: "He gave them power to be made the sons of God, to them that believe in his name. Who are born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God" (John 1: 12-13). John uses the expression “they are born” to say that men become sons of God not by nature, but by adoption. This shows the love of God, that He Who is their creator becomes then through grace also their Father. This happens when, as the Apostle says, men receive in their hearts the Spirit of the Incarnated Son, Who cries in them: "Abba, Father!" Saint Athanasius continues his explanation saying, that as created beings, men can become sons of God in no other manner than through faith and baptism, when they receive the Spirit of the natural and true Son of God. Precisely for that reason the Word became flesh, to make men capable of adoption as sons of God and of participation in the Divine nature. Consequently, by nature God is not in the proper sense the Father of all human beings. Only if someone consciously accepts Christ and is baptized, will he be able to cry in truth: "Abba, Father" (Rom. 8: 15; Gal. 4: 6).

Since the beginnings of the Church there was the assertion, as testified by Tertullian: “One is not born as a Christian, but one becomes a Christian” (Apol., 18, 5). And Saint Cyprian of Carthage formulated aptly this truth, saying: «He cannot have God for his Father, who has not the Church for his mother” (De unit., 6).

The most urgent task of the Church in our time is to care about the change of the spiritual climate and about the spiritual migration, namely that the climate of non-belief in Jesus Christ, the climate of the rejection of the kingship of Christ, be changed into the climate of explicit faith in Jesus Christ, of the acceptance of His kingship, and that men may migrate from the misery of the spiritual slavery of unbelief into the happiness of being sons of God and from a life of sin into the state of sanctifying grace. These are the migrants about whom we must care urgently.

Christianity is the only God-willed religion. Therefore, it can never be placed complementarily side by side with other religions. Those would violate the truth of Divine Revelation, as it is unmistakably affirmed in the First Commandment of the Decalogue, who would assert that the diversity of religions is the will of God. According to the will of Christ, faith in Him and in His Divine teaching must replace other religions, however not by force, but by loving persuasion, as expressed in the hymn of Lauds of the Feast of Christ the King: “Non Ille regna cladibus, non vi metuque subdidit: alto levatus stipite, amore traxit omnia” (“Not with sword, force and fear He subjects peoples, but lifted up on the Cross He lovingly draws all things to Himself”).

There is only one way to God, and this is Jesus Christ, for He Himself said: “I am the Way” (John 14: 6). There is only one truth, and this is Jesus Christ, for He Himself said: “I am the Truth” (John 14: 6). There is only one true supernatural life of the soul, and this is Jesus Christ, for He Himself said: “I am the Life” (John 14: 6).

The Incarnated Son of God taught that outside faith in Him there cannot be a true and God-pleasing religion: “I am the door. By me, if any man enters in, he shall be saved” (John 10: 9). God commanded to all men, without exception, to hear His Son: “This is my most beloved Son; hear Him!” (Mk. 9: 7). God did not say: “You can hear My Son or you can hear other founders of a religion, for it is My will that there are different religions.” God has forbidden us to recognize the legitimacy of the religion of other gods: “Thou shalt not have strange gods before me” (Ex. 20: 3) and “What fellowship has light with darkness? And what concord has Christ with Belial? Or what part has the faithful with the unbeliever? And what agreement has the temple of God with idols?” (2 Cor. 6: 14-16).

If other religions likewise corresponded to the will of God, there would not have been the Divine condemnation of the religion of the Golden Calf at the time of Moses (cf. Ex. 32: 4-20); then the Christians of today could unpunished cultivate the religion of a new Golden Calf, since all religions are, according to that theory, God-pleasing ways as well.

God gave the Apostles and through them the Church for all times the solemn order to instruct all nations and the followers of all religions in the only one true Faith, teaching them to observe all His Divine commandments and baptize them (cf. Mt. 28: 19-20). Since the preaching of the Apostles and of the first Pope, the Apostle Saint Peter, the Church proclaimed always that there is salvation in no other name, i.e., in no other faith under heaven by which men must be saved, but in the Name and in the Faith in Jesus Christ (cf. Acts 4: 12).

With the words of Saint Augustine the Church taught in all times: “The Christian religion is the only religion which possesses the universal way for the salvation of the soul; for except by this way, none can be saved. This is a kind of royal way, which alone leads to a kingdom which does not totter like all temporal dignities, but stands firm on eternal foundations.” (De civitate Dei, 10, 32, 1).

The following words of the great Pope Leo XIII testify the same unchanging teaching of the Magisterium in all times, when he affirmed: “The view that all religions are alike, is calculated to bring about the ruin of all forms of religion, and especially of the Catholic religion, which, as it is the only one that is true, cannot, without great injustice, be regarded as merely equal to other religions.” (Encyclical Humanum genus, n. 16)

In recent times the Magisterium presented substantially the same unchanging teaching in the Document “Dominus Jesus” (August 6, 2000), from which we quote the following relevant assertions:

“Theological faith (the acceptance of the truth revealed by the One and Triune God) is often identified with belief in other religions, which is religious experience still in search of the absolute truth and still lacking assent to God who reveals himself. This is one of the reasons why the differences between Christianity and the other religions tend to be reduced at times to the point of disappearance.” (n. 7) “Those solutions that propose a salvific action of God beyond the unique mediation of Christ would be contrary to Christian and Catholic faith.” (n. 14) “Not infrequently it is proposed that theology should avoid the use of terms like “unicity”, “universality”, and “absoluteness”, which give the impression of excessive emphasis on the significance and value of the salvific event of Jesus Christ in relation to other religions. In reality, however, such language is simply being faithful to revelation” (n. 15) “It is clear that it would be contrary to the faith to consider the Church as one way of salvation alongside those constituted by the other religions, seen as complementary to the Church or substantially equivalent to her, even if these are said to be converging with the Church toward the eschatological kingdom of God.” (n. 21) “The faith rules it out, in a radical way, that mentality of indifferentism “characterized by a religious relativism which leads to the belief that ‘one religion is as good as another' (John Paul II, Encyclical Letter Redemptoris missio, 36).” (n. 22)

The Apostles and the countless Christian martyrs of all times, especially those of the first three centuries, would have been spared martyrdom, if they had said: “The pagan religion and its worship is a way, which as well corresponds to the will of God.” There would have been for instance no Christian France, no “Eldest Daughter of the Church,” if Saint Remigius had said to Clovis, the King of the Francs: “Do not despise your pagan religion you have worshiped up to now, and worship now Christ, Whom you have persecuted up to now.” The saintly bishop actually spoke differently, although in a rather rough way: “Worship what you burned, and burn what you have worshiped!”

True universal brotherhood can be only in Christ, and namely between baptized persons. The full glory of God’s sons will be attained only in the beatific vision of God in heaven, as Holy Scripture teaches: “See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God's children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.” (1 John 3: 1-2).

No authority on earth – not even the supreme authority of the Church – has the right to dispense people from other religions from the explicit Faith in Jesus Christ as the Incarnated Son of God and the only Savior of mankind with the assurance that the different religions as such are willed by God Himself. Indelible – because written with the finger of God and crystal-clear in their meaning – remain, however, the words of the Son of God: “Whoever believes in the Son of God is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God” (John 3: 18). This truth was valid up to now in all Christian generations and will remain valid until the end of time, irrespective of the fact that some people in the Church of our so fickle, cowardly, sensationalist, and conformist time reinterpret this truth in a sense contrary to its evident wording, selling thereby this reinterpretation as continuity in the development of doctrine.

Outside the Christian Faith no other religion can be a true and God-willed way, since this is the explicit will of God, that all people believe in His Son: “This is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life” (John 6: 40). Outside the Christian Faith no other religion is able to transmit true supernatural life: “This is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent” (John 17: 3).

February 8, 2019

+ Athanasius Schneider,

Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Saint Mary in Astana

 

[Rorater Caeli] 2267.SA2


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

Humanae Vitae

 

A Papal Proclamation or a Prophecy?

FIFTY years ago, Pope Paul VI predicted the devastating effects of the sexual revolution in his encyclical, Humanae Vitae. Now, the producers of the acclaimed documentary, Convinced, take a closer look in their new film, Unprotected: A Pope, the Pill, and the Perils of Sexual Chaos

 

 

[Ignatius Press] 2267.3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

United Nations

 

UN logo

 

Desperate UN Women's Agency riles pro-life diplomats, panders to EU .

STEFANO GENNARINI, J.D., reports for the Friday Fax -- The UN agency for women put divisive abortion-related language in a draft agreement on women’s issues. Insiders say they did it to bow to powerful European donors in an attempt to stay relevant.

The first draft of the annual agreed conclusions of the UN Commission on the Status of Women was published this week. The draft uses controversial language about “sexual and reproductive health and rights” rejected multiple times by UN Member States. It is associated with abortion rights, LGBT rights, and other divisive agendas.

A disappointed delegate told the Friday Fax, “They should be starting from the language of last year.” He was referring to an agreement that qualified abortion-related term “sexual and reproductive health” to exclude an international right to abortion.

The draft prepared by the UN agency for women uses the phrase “sexual and reproductive health and rights.”

It confuses two separately defined terms, “sexual and reproductive health” and “reproductive rights.” The new phrase has no clear definition and has been used in association with abortion and LGBT rights. The new term is especially controversial because it implies “sexual rights.” African and Arab states take issue with this notion because of their conservative social mores.

UN diplomats told the Friday Fax this was a calculated move. The UN agency for Women probably took an extreme position to give Europeans a bargaining chip in upcoming negotiations.

“UN Women put it on purpose so that we will request to go back to the agreed language of last year,” a delegate said unsurprised. According to her, it was done so that the compromise of last year would become the fall-back position during upcoming negotiations.

But the language should also be seen as reflecting the influence of the EU bureaucracy on UN agencies and UN negotiations.

The language in the draft matches the language used by the European Council of Ministers in their annual directions to EU diplomats.

One delegate pointed out this was “acquiescing to the instructions of the EU countries who continue to be the main donors of [UN Women].” While the U.S. funds twenty-two percent of the UN core budget, the EU collectively funds roughly thirty percent of the UN budget, and therefore has more leverage in setting the UN agenda.

“They add their own language to show progress to the donors and wait for the negotiations to at least take up half of their suggestions,” the delegate explained.

“UN Women has increasingly moved away from their mandate of promoting gender equality and the empowerment of women,” another diplomat told the Friday Fax.

He suggested UN Women was going through an organizational crisis: “UN Women is trying to maintain relevance and not be subsumed into another UN agency. They seek to expand their issues so they have more leverage within the UN system. Promoting abortion is not in their mandate form the General Assembly, nevertheless they promote this, as well as LGBTI issues now.”

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China supplement

 

Underground Catholic churches forced to the catacombs

YANG XIANGWEN reports for Bitter Winter - Reminiscent of early Christians, Chinese Catholics must move in secret and meet in out-of-the-way places, while priests face arrest if caught.

Despite the signing of the Vatican-China Deal of 2018, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP)'s persecution of underground churches has intensified. Bitter Winter has received numerous reports of oppression and intimidation that show the hardships placed on believers by the government's plan to 'sinicize' religion and confirm that the CCP's interpretation of the deal is simply that bishops and priests of the Underground Catholic Church should join the Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association (CPCA). Those who refuse are persecuted.

'They want us to surrender and pay allegiance to the government,' said an underground priest in Tieling city in Liaoning Province. 'That is absolutely out of the question. Our church is the place where we pray to God. It is not a government agency.'

 

Closed sign

The Catholic church in
Xintaizi has been sealed off


On December 10, officials from county's Religious Affairs Bureau informed the underground church in Xintaizi town under Tieling's jurisdiction that it did not have an official permit, nor was the national flag displayed, so it was considered an illegal meeting venue. The officials demanded to clear out the crosses, holy statues, donation box, and all other religious symbols and items from inside the church within the next three days. If the church continued to hold gatherings in private, those involved would be punished for violating the law. Shortly afterward, officials posted a 'notice of closure in accordance with the law' on the church's exterior wall. On December 14, the church was sealed off by the local town government.

The following day, the police took the church's priest to the Religious Affairs Bureau. He was told that he is not a native of Tieling, making it illegal for him to preach in the area. They forced him to sign a guarantee that he will not preach here anymore, threatening him, 'If you don't sign it, we will arrest you right now!'

On December 16, a senior government official came to the church for an inspection to ensure it had remained sealed. The official said that he would come back for another inspection in three months.

Although the church was closed, believers were unwilling to stop holding gatherings. They found a workshop outside the town to serve as a substitute chapel. To avoid being discovered, worshipers would set out at 5 a.m. for the gatherings and arranged for people to stand outside the workshop to keep watch.

Despite their efforts, the clandestine gatherings were eventually discovered. According to village officials, the authorities had already put the church and its members under surveillance.

More and more, underground Catholics are finding themselves spiritually homeless because their churches have been closed.

In January 2019, officials from the Zhangjiakou Economic Development Zone in Hebei Province went door to door distributing flyers and used a loudspeaker to spread a simple message: every church not approved by the government is considered an unauthorized meeting venue and must be closed down. The officials demanded that believers go to state-controlled churches to attend Mass instead. Any priest who does not go to the relevant government department to apply for a license will not be eligible to preach or perform sacraments. If anyone gives shelter to priests and church members not following the law, a fine of 50,000 RMB ($7,400) will be imposed.

A local church member revealed the steps taken to ensure they could still attend Mass. First, priests must change the venue for Mass frequently, sometimes celebrating under a bridge, or in very remote places. Second, church members are only informed of the specific location one hour prior to holding Mass. Therefore, some congregants are often unable to attend, such as elderly people who have limited mobility or those who did not receive the notice in time.

This source added that, because Mass is held in remote locations and the roads are uneven, some elderly believers have fallen in their rush to get to the meeting place. The room where Mass is held is a small and crowded space, leaving many worshipers standing outside in the cold.

As a substitute, some have set up shrines in their home. Even so, they were still unable to escape persecution. After learning that an elderly couple in their late seventies had set up a shire, local officials forced them to remove it. Afterward, the police came to their home every few days to supervise and harass them.

On October 13, Father Su Guipeng of the Diocese of Zhangjiakou was arrested and detained for two and a half months of forced indoctrination for refusing to join the CPCA. Following his release, he has remained under close surveillance and has been prohibited from celebrating Mass for believers. Many other priests in the same Diocese have been subjected to similar restrictions, making it difficult for believers to attend regular Mass.

Another priest in the same Diocese said that since the Vatican-China interim agreement was signed, the plight of the underground Catholic Church has become increasingly perilous. He believes that forcing underground churches to join the CPCA is more than an effort to 'sinicize' Catholicism. In fact, it is aimed at controlling churches, decreasing their number, and ultimately, eliminating them entirely.

International observers tend to agree. The editor of AsiaNews, Fr. Bernardo Cervellera, said in his intervention at the seminar 'Religious Freedom in China' held at the European Parliament in Brussels, on January 23, 2019: 'The government and the Chinese Communist Party are engaged in a real religious war to oust the God of Christians and replace Him with the god-Xi Jinping. This implies a total submission to the Communist Party, a condition included in the new Regulations to nurture religion in China. In the name of Sinicization and subjugation, religions are distorted until they become simple instruments of support to the Party.'

[Bitter Winter] 2267.4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


CF NEWS

Cardinal Zen in new book says Vatican’s China ‘strategy was wrong, all about compromise and surrender’.
 
Cdl. ZenMAIKE HICKSON writes for LifeSiteNews
-- Chinese Cardinal Joseph Zen has strongly criticized in a new book the Vatican's recent dealings with China, stating that the "strategy was wrong," adding that it was "all about compromise and surrender." He has also revealed that the troubling China policy did not start with Pope Francis.

In "For Love of My People I Will Not Remain Silent" released by Ignatius Press on Jan. 25, Cardinal Zen describes in detail the history of the Vatican's shifting China policy over the course of the last decades.

After he praises Cardinal Jozef Tomko, the Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples (CEP) from 1985 until 2001, for his clarity in dealing with China, Cardinal Zen also makes it clear that, since Tomko's end of tenure in 2001, the Vatican has been sending confusing messages and has made compromising decisions when dealing with Communist China. Zen writes with honesty and open disclosure about the inner conflicts in the Vatican regarding China.

The book contains a set of eight lectures delivered by the Chinese cardinal in Hong Kong in 2017, the tenth anniversary of Pope Benedict XVI's own 2007 Letter to Chinese Catholics which presents “some guidelines concerning the life of the Church and the task of evangelization in China.” Zen – the former bishop of Hong Kong – had counseled Pope Benedict with regard to that official letter, and he describes in detail how the letter came into existence and how some members of the Roman Curia tried to skew the Pope's own message. As a matter of fact, Cardinal Zen describes that, especially since 2001, there exists a group of curial members from the CEP and the Secretary of State who promote a sort of Ostpolitik which seeks more compromise with the Communist government in China, to the detriment of the Catholic faithful.

As will be seen, Pope Benedict, though personally supporting Cardinal Zen in his efforts to resist the Communist influence in the Catholic Church in China, also showed himself too lenient toward those curial members who were working against Cardinal Zen. When seeing problems with the Vatican's new China policy, “I brought it to the attention of the Holy Father, but it seems that not even the Pope could do anything about it,” is Cardinal Zen's polite, but discouraging comment. On another occasion, when the Pope did not want to confront those in the Vatican who opposed Cardinal Zen, Pope Benedict XVI limply said to Cardinal Zen: “Sometimes one does not want to offend a person.”

Overall, the book is marked by an unusual honesty and frankness. For the sake of a truthful assessment of the history of the Vatican's dealing with China, Cardinal Zen does not shy away from quoting private conversations with Pope Benedict XVI and from secret Vatican meetings concerning China. Yet, this disclosure is meant to be for the good of the Church, for the sake of a policy that truly protects the Catholics in China and defends the truth of the Catholic Faith.

China's complexity

Throughout the book, Cardinal Zen makes it clear that the situation in China is very complex, and he insists upon drawing a differentiated picture that does justice also to those Catholics who are now members of the Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association (CPCA) under the influence of the Communists. However, Zen insists that, since the foundation of the CPCA in 1957, this organization has been schismatic, inasmuch as it is under the complete influence of the Communists and inasmuch as it has been consecrating bishops without any permission or mandate from Rome.

What Cardinal Zen is able to show is that the Chinese Communists, however, have always been sensitive to their being seen as having the support of the Catholics, and that they tend to be less bold and oppressive when they feel some counter-pressure from Rome. That is to say, the more lenient Rome has shown itself to be toward demands from China, the bolder the Communists have become in their intrusion into Catholic affairs. They at once exploit what Fritz Kraemer calls a "provocative weakness" on the part of the Church.

As Zen says, there is “faithfulness not only within the underground Church, but also among most people in the official Church.” (He taught at different seminaries in official seminaries in China and thus has first-hand experience here.) Even though Cardinal Zen sees that there are still many well-meaning Catholics in the CPCA, he insists upon fighting back against the undue influence of Communism in Catholics' affairs and he insists that the confusion of the faithful should not be increased. That is to say, Rome should not send the message that it is now acceptable to accept the Communist rule over Catholic affairs. Yet, too many times – even before Pope Francis – this acquiescence has been practically done.

Cardinal Zen shows in his book that a sort of confusion has been exponentially increasing in the last decades. Rome has been sending messages to China that have encouraged faithful bishops to make some essential compromises with China, even coming out into the open and submitting themselves to the rule of the Communists. These developments have had the effect that the loyal Catholics in China from the underground have lost trust in those compliant bishops, but they also are confused as to what the Vatican is actually intending.

Problems prior to Pope Francis

This description of confusion and of discouragement unmistakably already pertains to the time before the pontificate of Pope Francis. For example, Zen says that, under Cardinal Tomko's successor, “some of the Bishops ordained on January 6, 2000, were too easily legitimized.” They had asked for forgiveness from the Holy Father, but such a legitimization had usually to be granted only after a thorough examination of whether such an illegitimately consecrated bishop truly had the Catholic Faith. For, the illegitimate consecrations in the year 2000 have certainly been “a clear challenge to the Pope's authority.”

When, in 2006, Pope Benedict XVI, appreciating Zen's “zeal for the Church in China,” made him a cardinal, Cardinal Zen told the Chinese Catholics that he himself “had received the scarlet vestment in their name because it represented the red of the blood of the martyrs.” Benedict thereby wanted Zen to help him with China. But at the same time, the new head of the CEP – it was then Cardinal Crescenzio Sepe – tried to slow Zen down, telling him: “Don't forget that the Communists are also our brothers.” Cardinal Zen replied that the bishops who are jailed by the Communists are his brothers, too, and asked on whose side he, Zen, should stand. It was clear to Cardinal Zen that this prelate “wanted me to stay out of it.” When Zen came to Rome for a visit, neither the CEP nor the Secretary of State even tried to meet with him. “We are very busy,” they said.

Pope Benedict – “a Pope who loves China” – then tried, in this atmosphere, to write his 2007 Letter to the Chinese Catholics, restating some fundamental aspects of how to deal with the situation in China, such as the insistence upon the Pope's authority with regard to episcopal consecrations. While Cardinal Zen honors the Letter to Chinese Catholics, a careful reader will notice that he does not always agree with the tone of appeasement, even under Benedict, something he politely calls the “overly tolerant attitude of the Holy See.”

“The Holy See has not always reacted forcefully,” Zen says, when dealing, for example, with illegitimate consecrations of new bishops by the Chinese Communists. (Important to know in this context is that Cardinal Zen says that a certain Mr. Liu Bainian, the powerful layman who effectively runs the official Catholic Church in China, is a high-ranking official in the Communist Party.) By legitimizing too many of the illegitimately consecrated bishops under Communist rule, the Vatican is again sending a confusing message to the faithful Catholics in China, says Zen. The impression is made that “sooner or later you will be legitimized,” thus implicitly inviting future illegitimate episcopal consecrations. Zen states: “I brought it to the attention of the Holy Father, but it seems that not even the Pope could do anything about it.”

Importantly, Cardinal Zen shows how the 2007 papal letter to the Chinese Catholics was mistranslated – and then and thus manipulated – and that it took Cardinal Zen a full year to get the Vatican to post on its website a correct Chinese translation (and this manifestly against the will of the CEP). There was also published an explanatory note to the somewhat lengthy 2007 Letter, and this note contains some strange comments, indeed, such as: “Some, caring for the good of the faithful and looking far into the future, have accepted to be illegitimately ordained.” Zen then asks: “If this is the case, does it mean that those who did not accept illegitimate ordination do not care about the good of the faithful? Are they shortsighted?” (Later, he calls such compliant talk “grossly unfair.”)

Strategy was wrong

Cardinal Zen is very forceful in his critique of the overall Vatican policy. He says: “the strategy was wrong, all about compromise and surrender [....] The Curia has always tried to please the Chinese government.” He adds that “they didn't listen to us, who come from the front line.” But the Holy Father, he explains “could not say who was right and who was wrong.” Zen says that “we could see the gap between the Pope's way of thinking and that of the people who were supposed to support it, and who instead distorted it.” Why this is the case, Cardinal Zen further explains when he writes “Pope Benedict is a saint, a great theologian, but has weakness: he is too good, too humble, too tolerant.”

Cardinal Zen reveals that he said at some point to the Pope: “Holy Father, I can't take it anymore. You want me to help you with the Church in China, but I only have words; you have the authority and you are not helping me.”

Cardinal Zen discusses in detail this 2007 Letter which he calls a “great gift.” The main argument of Zen is that a reconciliation between the official Church and the underground Church in China is not possible, as long as the Communists try to influence and to steer the Church's inner life and suppress the free exercise of the Catholic Faith. Therefore, it is not a proper reconciliation between two parties, but an attempt at telling one party to stop influencing the other.

He explains that he saw in the draft of the Letter an “excessively laudatory” tone, and Benedict indeed removed a specific quote that Zen had singled out (he followed also other suggestions of Zen). On the question of “good will” on both sides, Zen says that “the deadlock can last for a long time, and perhaps we can never reach a good outcome.” If this is the case, the most important aspect should be to help the Catholics in China to preserve the full Catholic Faith.

“Harmony and understanding,” Zen said, “cannot come at the expense of the truth.”

Cardinal Zen insists that the Communist government “shows no respect” even for the bishops of the official Church, whom they control completely. Often, the Communists even force these bishops to partake in illegitimate episcopal consecrations, forcing them physically to attend. And: “They act as if the Pope does not exist.”

Cardinal Zen discusses also the question as to whether or not the clergymen of the underground Church should now come out from hiding and get officially acknowledged. Pope Benedict leaves this question open in his 2007 Letter, saying that it is up to each bishop to decide, but that the faithful should obey their bishop if he decides to do so. “The Pope did not rule out the possibility of doing so,” Zen says, “but neither did he encourage it.” Some, however, afterwards thought that the Pope actually had encouraged a coming out.

Cardinal Zen shows that, in most cases, this “coming out” is to the detriment of the Faith, because the Communists will thereby further take control. “It is very difficult to come out into the open.” Cardinal Zen sees that the Pope's attitude here had been detrimentally influenced by the CEP which had even encouraged one auxiliary bishop – Bishop An of Baoding – to come out into the open. However, as Zen shows, Bishop An “who had suffered for many years in prison for his faith” then became “a blind follower of the government.” Zen states here that “priests and believers who now abandon the Bishop [An], guided by their consciences, sorrowfully have no other choice.” They cannot follow their bishop.

Using even stronger words, Zen adds: “In the current situation, going from an underground to an official condition is, for all intents and purposes, unlawful because the official condition is a schismatic structure.” As can be seen here, Zen takes a stronger stance than Pope Benedict himself.

A too lenient attitude on the side of the Vatican encourages the Communists to be bold, says Zen. An example is that the Communists openly celebrated – shortly after the publication of the Pope's 2007 Letter – the fiftieth anniversary of the first illegitimate episcopal consecration in China (in 1958), with many Catholic bishops and priests present, “as if the Pope's Letter had never been written!” Cardinal Zen then said to the Pope, in the presence of Cardinal Bertone (the Secretary of State at the time): “It is all the fault of Ostpolitik. The willingness on the part of the Holy See to yield has encouraged the Chinese government to be more and more arrogant.”

Defender of the Catholic Chinese

Thus, Cardinal Zen shows himself to be a defender of the Catholic Chinese who yearn to keep the Faith intact and to remain united with the hierarchical Church as founded by Christ. “How can we deliver the flock into the mouth of rapacious wolves?” is the piercing question that Cardinal Zen poses with regard to our now leaving Catholics in the hands of Communist-controlled structures. He warns us, saying that “in the underground community the Bishops are becoming fewer and fewer.”

This Chinese prelate is to be honored for his speaking the plain truth, even if it wounds and hurts, for the sake of helping the Catholic Church in China. His book will help Catholics to learn more about the history of this long-lasting conflict with China, and it will help them assess the new approach of Ostpolitik, as proposed now by Pope Francis, which was, however, partly started long before his own pontificate.

For sure, Cardinal Zen warns us against Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the current Secretary of State, whom he calls “arrogant and despotic, interested more in diplomatic (worldly) success than in the triumph of the Faith.” Zen says that Parolin “got rid of me.” Thus, he concludes: “The ones we fear are Pope Francis' collaborators, infatuated with Ostpolitik.”

When asked in a January 31 interview with EWTN's Raymond Arroyo about the response of the Catholics in China to the new Vatican agreement, Cardinal Zen said: “They say: 'Horrible', a voice of despair, of confusion.”

 

[LSN]2267.4a

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

News from around the world

 

Australia Archdiocese of Melbourne invites homosexuals, lesbians to 'listening session'

LISA BOURNE reports for LifeSiteNews - - The Archdiocese of Melbourne in Australia plans a 'listening and dialogue' session for 'LGBT' Catholics and others next week at its ongoing Plenary Council.

'Calling all LGBTIQA+ Catholics, Christians and the broader LGBTIQA+ community, family, friends and supporters to come along for a safe and inclusive conversation,' the Archdiocesan website states. The Archdiocese is led by Archbishop Peter Andrew Comensoli.

The Plenary Council, what the bishops are calling the 'highest form of gathering of local church and has legislative and governance authority,' is being held 'so that we can dialogue about the future of the Catholic Church in Australia,' states the website about the event. The event is being promoted in the name of becoming a 'synodal Church' called for by Pope Francis.

'What is discussed and determined by the Plenary Council will be based on a long listening to the Holy Spirit speaking through the voices of people from around Australia,' the Archdiocesan website states.

'This listening and dialogue process provides an opportunity to come together as a group to spend time thinking and talking about personal experiences of faith, life and church. Following this session, a submission will be made on behalf of the LGBTIQA+ community by Acceptance Melbourne, a community for LGBTIQA+ Catholics,' it adds.

The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference (ACBC) called the Plenary, which occurs over three years.

According to the archdiocesan website, the first year was 2018 and a 'Year of Listening,' with local listening and dialogue sessions and data compilation. This year of 2019 is a 'Year of Discerning' where summary reports from the listening and dialogue sessions will be written up as the agenda for 2020. Called a 'Year of Proposing,' 2020 has two Plenary Council sessions scheduled, one in October and another in May 2021, when proposed legislation will be voted on.

The Catholic Church teaches that homosexual acts are 'acts of grave depravity' and that they are 'intrinsically disordered.'

'They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved,' states the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

The Catechism further adds that the same-sex inclination is itself 'objectively disordered.'

A concerned Catholic in the archdiocese contacted LifeSiteNews regarding the impending February 6 'LGBTIQA+' session. The Catholic said a letter of concern written regarding the 'LGBTIQA+' session to Archbishop Comensoli had received no response.

'It pains me to see the church in the state of ruin but worst of all it pains to see it being decimated to ashes by so-called 'Princes' of the church, our very own shepherds,' the source said.

An Australian priest also commented to LifeSiteNews, saying that the Archdiocese' invitation to homosexuals is 'causing scandal to the faithful and, once more, confusion and distress to faithful Catholics, including those who experience same-sex attraction and wish to follow the Church's life-giving teaching on chastity and human sexuality.'

LifeSiteNews inquired with the Archdiocese about the event.

Archdiocesan Director of Media, Communications and Philanthropy Shane Healy told LifeSiteNews that some 40,000 people have taken part in either group discussions or submitted something for the Plenary, forwarding the submission form. The facilitated group sessions are focused on the question, 'What is God asking of us in Australia at this time,' Healy said, and the 'The process is one into which all Catholics are invited.'

The question of content of the upcoming 'LGBTIQA+' session received no attention in the response.

Archdiocesan representatives, including the archbishop's Office of Evangelization, will be involved as facilitators according to the archdiocese's website. 'Other key collaborators' include Melbourne Auxiliary Bishop Mark Edwards OMI, along with an archdiocesan priest and individuals representing a number of LGBT activist groups.

Acceptance Melbourne, which will make the submission after the listening session, is militantly against Catholic teaching on homosexuality.

'We are an open and affirming community in Melbourne, Australia that supports Catholics who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Intersex and Queer,' the group states about itself on Meet Up. The group envisions a Church that 'embraces and welcomes diversity, and is inclusive and open to all who identify as LGBTIQ, supporting their integration of faith, sexuality and gender identity.'

The group states that LGBT Catholics are 'called to express our sexuality in a life-affirming and responsible manner.'

To respectfully express concern:

Archbishop Peter A Comensoli

PO Box 146

East Melbourne VIC 8002 Australia

Cardinal Knox Centre

383 Albert Street

East Melbourne VIC 3002

Tel: 03 9926 5677

Email: info@cam.org.au

[LSN] 2267.5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


CF NEWS

Australia Something is rotten in the State of Victoria, and it's not 'conversion therapy'

An Australian premier vows to ban professional help for those unhappy with same-sex attraction.

JAMES PARKER writes for MercatorNet - Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has released a media statement relating to so-called 'gay conversion therapy', promising to outlaw therapies offered to people with unwanted same-sex attraction. This sets off my antennae as I am a male who throughout his entire childhood and early adulthood believed himself to have been 'born gay'.

As a contented gay male I entered into regular therapy in early adulthood. The goal was not to change sexuality (I didn't believe that was necessary and was told categorically by my LGBTQ elders that it was not even possible), but rather to deal with some of the poor boundaries I experienced in my friendships.

As I stepped over the therapist's lintel, it was of course impossible to leave behind any part of my character or life experience. All of me entered the room, including every one of my sexual attractions.

In brief, over the period of a few years I had morphed into a very different person to the one who had originally embarked upon therapy. The greatest change was that I left therapy feeling significantly more sexually attracted to women than I did to men. That had never been the plan, so nobody was more shocked than me.

What is the Victorian government's agenda?

Today, Premier Andrews drives the national debate around the topic of whether change is possible in the area of sexual attraction. The fires he creates are stoked by a myriad of LGBTQ advocates and their allies.

It is interesting that, as this debate rises in pockets of the Western world, very few people, including clinicians and members of the LGBTQ community, can clearly define what this therapy is and what exactly it entails.

This question alone should make us all consider carefully what the Victorian government's underlying agenda might be. This is vital since the legal chains being melted and cast in Victorian furnaces could well be shackling individuals right across Australia and beyond before too long.

In his statement, Andrews mocks the claim that it is possible 'to change someone's sexuality or gender identity.' He says that any attempt to do this is 'a most personal form of torture, a cruel practice that perpetuates the idea that LGBTI people are in some way broken' referring to any help offered as 'bigoted quackery.'

His hyperbole is based on a report produced in partnership with La Trobe University (yes, architects of Australia's contemptible Safe Schools Coalition). The report's summary states that 'the historical review' undertaken by its researchers 'shows that attempts to reorient LGBT people are recent,' going on to say that 'in clinical medicine they were only experimental and were never successful'. (my italics)

Never successful, eh?

Twenty well-known studies over 40 years show success

Researchers of the final report, surreptitiously entitled Preventing Harm, Promoting Justice, clearly failed to access over 20 renowned empirical case studies (see footnote) which demonstrated that over a 40-year period between 1970 and 2010 over 40 percent of homosexually oriented people who underwent therapy, often in the care of compassionate, insightful and trained professionals, experienced some degree of healthy shift towards heterosexuality.

They also ignore contemporary research undertaken by Dr Lisa Diamond, a non-religious lesbian researcher at Utah University, and Ritch Savin-Williams, professor emeritus of developmental psychology of Cornell University who specialises in gay, lesbian, and bisexual research.

Both Diamond and Savin-Williams produced conclusive evidence that many people experience change in sexual attraction and that sexuality can be incredibly fluid. Here we see science backing up the plethora of stories increasingly found online from people who have moved beyond gay to live what they speak of as more fulfilling and stable lives, with some marrying the opposite sex and enjoying parenthood. The recently birthed Changed movement bears witness to this.

Andrews' researchers also ignored a peer-reviewed 2018 study undertaken by New Zealand scientific research consultant Dr. Neil Whitehead along with Paul Santero and Dolores Ballesteros.

Whitehead and colleagues examined the reported benefits of sexual attraction fluidity exploration in therapy (SAFE-T) as well as the positives and harms in a sample of religious men with unwanted same-sex attractions. Their outcomes show that, 'as found in previous surveys, there was real change, little harm, much good, completely opposite to the findings of the [2009 American Psychological Association] report'.

'A number changed a dramatic extent - from nearly completely same-sex attraction to nearly completely opposite-sex attracted,' Whitehead stated. 'About two thirds moved a significant amount, and the rest mainly did not show any change. A very few actually became more same-sex attracted. However, it was rather remarkable how much therapy was found to be very beneficial, even among those who did not change. One can surmise they had lots of help for other issues and found real fellowship in the support groups.'

This doesn't sound so profoundly torturous and cruel, does it, Mr Andrews?

Andrews also told journalists: 'We'll drag these practices from the dark ages and into the brightest of lights. We'll put an end to the suffering and help survivors to heal. And we'll send the clearest message of all: Here in Victoria, not only are you good enough - you're worth celebrating.'

Strong words of threat and of warfare. Also rather strange: although the La Trobe report he relies on says that 'attempts to reorient LGBT people are recent,' suddenly Victorian politicians will be dragging these practices 'from the dark ages.'

Could there be just a hint of an underlying agenda to all this? Well, yes. It is politics after all.

Whitehead states in his peer-reviewed research (unlike the research embraced by Andrews which has not been peer-reviewed), 'The people in this survey had a religiosity very much higher than the general population. However, they were quite diverse - nondenominational Protestants, Jews, Mormons, a few Catholics, and a few traditional Protestants - no Atheists!'

It does not take much effort to understand why religious freedom, a dominant pillar of a stable society, must be mocked and attacked at every level by LGBTQ advocates and their allies after the passing of same-sex marriage legislation. Think about it: if people aren't actually 'born gay' (and please wake me up if they ever find 'the gay gene') then the whole LGBTQ push for newly-minted rights is null and void.

Religious belief and practice have throughout history offered individuals a very real way out of unwanted behaviours and mindsets, and we see today that these include unwanted same-sex attractions. It is for this reason that so-called ex-gays love gays and try to reach out to them, and explains why gays hate ex-gays and bully them mercilessly into silence.

Andrews' proposed laws are likely only to achieve the opposite of what he preaches.

They will create greater suffering for a number of very vulnerable people. They will block many survivors of sexual trauma from accessing healing and hope. They send a strong message to Victorians that only proponents of LGBTQ ideology are 'good enough' and that those who dare to risk searching for inner freedom outside of the fundamentalist religion of the Fallen Rainbow Bubble are not worth celebrating and must be excommunicated.

This law should enrage everyone who values true freedom. It manifests a dictatorial state deciding whether an unwanted aspect of a citizen, which might well be changeable, can be professionally addressed or not.

Will the same prohibition, or a similar one, which denies a person the right to undergo their own selection of therapy, be placed upon any of the twelve-step programs which presently assist our fellow Australians to free themselves of alcohol and drug addictions, thus saving the taxpayer a small fortune in Medicare rebates?

Will it lead to those with a plethora of sexual fetishes being told that they are normal and to live these out without concern or shame?

Let's give the final word to gay political writer and broadcaster Matthew Parris, whose column in last month's British Spectator was entitled, 'The fact no one likes to admit: many gay men could just have easily been straight'. He says:

'…there are plenty of 'gay' men who know that, in a different life, they could reasonably contentedly be straight. Indeed, hordes are: happy in real marriages with wives and children. And I've noticed in myself and heard reported from others how the shapes of our desires can shift with the years.

'In what passes for the gay 'community', there's something of a taboo about admitting, even to ourselves, that quite a few of us (not me) could, with a little coaxing and self-discipline, be 'straight'.'

Will somebody please change the lenses in Mr Andrews' glasses and remove the earplugs from his staff's ears? Victoria wants to make laws based on a taboo of the LGBTQ community. If denying a person's request for internationally proven care is rejected in the area of something as fluid as sexual attraction, and endorsed by a community that fears to look its own reality in the eyes, then what else might such a denial be applied to in years to come? And which member of your family will it ultimately affect, if indeed it somehow manages to bypass you, which of course it may not?

All is not well in the state of Victoria as harm is promoted and justice prevented, where lies are now casually delivered as truth and where truth is now denied the freedom of debate.

As Australians, the challenge we all have is this: if we fail to speak up for person-centred therapeutic choice now, how long before we too are incarcerated in similar chains of faux-freedom presently being cast in the furnaces of Victoria?

Studies showing change towards heterosexual after therapy:

• Jones & Yarhouse, Book: Ex-Gays? A Longitudinal Study, InterVarsity Press, 2007. Experiencing at least some heterosexual shift: 33 out of 73

• Shidlo & Schroeder, Professional Psychology: Research & Practice, 2002 - 14 out of 202

• Nicolosi, Byrd & Potts, Psychological Reports, 1997 - 573 out of 882

• Berger, American Journal of Psychotherapy, 1994 - 1 out of 1

• MacIntosh, Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Assocn, 1994- 276/1215

• Golwyn & Sevlie, Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 1993 - 1 out of 1

• Schechter, International Forum of Psychoanalysis, 1992 - 1 out of 1

• Van den Aardweg, Book: On the Origins & Treatment of Homosexuality,'86 - 37 out of 101

•Schwartz & Masters, American Journal of Psychiatry, 1984 - 35 out of 54

•Pattison & Pattison, American Journal of Psychiatry, 1980 - 11 out of 11

• Birk, Book: Homosexual Behavior: A Modern Reappraisal, 1980 - 1 out of 29

• Masters & Johnson, Book: Homosexuality in Perspective, 1979 - 29 out of 67

• Socarides, Book: Homosexuality, 1978 - 20 out of 45

• Callahan, Book: Counseling Methods, 1976 - 1 out of 1

• Freeman & Meyer, Behavior Therapy, 1975 - 9 out of 11

• Canton-Dutari, Archives of Sexual Behavior, 1974 - 44 out of 54

• Birk, Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy, 1974 - 14 out of 66

• Liss & Weiner, American Journal of Psychotherapy, 1973 - 1 out of 1

• Barlow & Agras, Journal of Applied Behavior Analysis, 1973 - 2 out of 2

• Pittman & DeYoung, Int'l Journal of Group Psychotherapy, 1971 - 3 out of 6

• Truax & Tourney. Diseases of the Nervous System, 1971 - 20 out of 30

• Hatterer, Book: Changing Homosexuality in the Male, 1970 - 49 out of 143

• McConaghy, British Journal of Psychiatry, 1970 - 10 out of 40

 

[James Parker is a former gay activist who today supports same-sex attracted people and their loved ones].

[MercatorNet] 2267.6

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


CF NEWS

France Disneyland to host first-ever official gay ‘pride’ event.

MARTIN M. BARILLAS reports for LifeSiteNews – “Magical Pride” will be Disney’s first-ever official pro-homosexual “pride” event and will take place in June in Paris, France.

“Live your best life and shine with the joy of diversity at Magical Pride, a dazzling party lighting up Disneyland Paris on 1st June 2019,” Paris’ Disney Land states on its website about the event.

“Dress like a dream, feel fabulous and experience Walt Disney Studios Park like never before - loud, proud and alive with all the colours of the rainbow,” it adds.

According to a company website, to kick off Gay Pride Month the Disney Studios Park in Paris “will be privatised for a special Pride party” and will include a dance party, light-night access to the amusement park and a parade.

According to NBC, a Disney spokesperson said: “Diversity and equality are strong values at Disneyland Paris, and each year, we host millions of visitors regardless of their origins, gender or sexual orientation.” The spokesperson added, “We are committed to fostering a welcoming environment for all of our Guests where magic is for everyone.”

While Disney has cooperated with LGBTQ groups who have staged events at various Disney parks in the past, this is the first time that a pro-homosexual “pride” event will be officially organized by the entertainment giant. Unofficial Magic Pride events, however, have been taking place at the Paris location since 2014, according to CBS.

Disney amusement facilities have otherwise welcomed LGBTQ customers for years, having opened up Cinderella’s Castle to same-sex “weddings” in 2007 and seen Gay Days, as well. At Disney World in Florida, for instance, the unofficial 29th Annual Gay Days will kick-off on August 13. The Wyndham hotel chain is offering lodging to those participating. The iconic original Disneyland in California held its Gay Days in October when visitors wore red shirts to signal their support for the LGBTQ cause.

Even while Disney has welcomed Gay Days and rainbow-hued Mickey Mouse ears, LGBTQ activists have not been satisfied. Mashable reported that despite having a large pro-homosexual fanbase, Disney has lagged in having “queer representation” in its films.

Disney’s films, however, have been criticized by pro-family advocates for pushing the normalization of homosexuality in its so-called “family” entertainment.

The Disney cartoon Doc McStuffins featured a family headed by two lesbian "moms" in its 2017 show about an aspiring doctor. It's marketed to preschoolers.

Disney’s 2017 remake of Beauty and the Beast featured a homosexual subplot where one of the film’s characters was refashioned to be homosexual.

Disney Channel introduced in 2017 a homosexual teen character in “Andi Mack.” The show was aimed principally at a preadolescent television audience.

Last year the writer and co-director of Disney’s popular “Frozen” animated film gave what the Huffington Post called a “glimmer of hope” regarding main character Elsa coming out of the closet as a lesbian.

Disney’s upcoming film Jungle Cruise will feature for the first time an openly homosexual character.

The entertainment giant also has a history of promoting homosexuality through its parks and merchandise.

[LSN] 2267.6a

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


CF NEWS

Germany Open letter from dissidents urges changes in Church teaching on sexual morality

DANIEL CHRISTOPH WIMMER reports for CNA - In an open letter published on Sunday by a German daily, nine German Catholics, including two prominent Jesuits, demand a break with the Church's teaching on sexual morality.

The signatories call for a reworking of ecclesial structure, namely a 'separation of powers', the priestly ordination of women, an end to mandatory priestly celibacy, and other changes.

Published in the February 3 edition of Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, the letter is addressed to Cardinal Reinhard Marx of Munich and Freising, president of the German bishops' conference, and tells him that if he and other bishops were to decide to 'spearhead the Reform movement', they would be assured of the signatories' full support.

Among those who signed the letter are the rector of the Sankt Georgen Graduate School in Frankfurt, Jesuit Father Ansgar Wucherpfennig, as well as Jesuit Father Klaus Mertes and the Frankfurt City's Catholic Dean, Fr Johannes zu Eltz.

Father Wucherpfennig re-election as rector was recently called into question by the Vatican, because of comments made in 2016 in which claimed, among other things, that passages condemning homosexuality in the Bible had been 'misread'. He has since been reinstated.

The three priests are joined by former Jesuit Jörg Splett, an academic philosopher, as well as his wife Ingrid, the 'Greens' politician Bettina Jarasch, the Frankfurt Caritas director Gaby Hagemans, and two members of the Central Committee of German Catholics, Claudia Lücking-Michel and Dagmar Mensink.

The signatories demand the Catholic Church should hit 'reset' and make a fresh start when it comes to the Church's teaching on sexual morality, including a 'reasonable and just evaluation of homosexuality'.

The letter further calls on bishops to pursue a 'genuine separation of powers', claiming that this would 'conform better with Christ's humility', and to 'open (…) ordained ministry up to women'. What is more, the signatories demand that diocesan priests should freely choose whether to live a celibate life or not: This way, 'celibacy can again credibly point to the Kingdom of Heaven', the letter states.

Finally, the signatories wish Cardinal Marx a 'good trip to Rome' when attending the February 21-24 sexual abuse summit, and to pass on their greetings to Pope Francis.

[LSN] 2267.7

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


CF NEWS

North Korea Clandestine Catholics

ALTHOUGH it’s difficult to know if any Catholics are living in North Korea today, a Korean priest has said that even after a long period of persecution in the world’s most oppressive regime, there are still about 10,000 people in North Korea “who will remember in their hearts their Catholic faith.” Some of the most recent first-hand information we have on the status of the Catholic Church in North Korea comes from a report given several years ago by Father Lee Eun-hyung, the general secretary of the Committee for the Reconciliation of the Korean People.

Parishioners are led by a layperson who celebrates the liturgy of the word every Sunday.
“This must be true,” he said, “because as far as I know there are no Catholic priests living in North Korea at present.”

According to North Korean authorities, there are about 3,000 Catholics in the country but there is no way of knowing if that figure is accurate, he said. In fact, the last time any accurate figures were available was in 1945 when the demilitarized zone was drawn and divided Korea into two countries.. Almost all of the churches that were around at the time of the demarcation of the two countriesare gone now, except for five Christian churches that are still standing in Pyongyang, one of which is Changchung Cathedral. This is supposedly the official cathedral of the Roman Catholic Bishop of Pyongyang; however, it operates under the Korean Catholic Association which is not recognized by the Vatican. There are crosses in the cathedral, but no crucifixes. Weekly services feature hymns and prayers but no sacraments and only state-appointed laymen can officiate at the services.

 

 

 

[Rome Reports] 2267.7b

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


CF NEWS

Peru Pope Francis appointee as archbishop in Peru favors liberation theology, ‘ecological’ agenda

MattasoglioJEANNE SMITS reports for LifeSiteNews — Less than a month after Cardinal Juan Luis Cipriani Thorne tendered his resignation as Archbishop of Lima, Peru, having reached his 75th birthday, the Vatican announced his replacement as Fr. Carlos Castillo Mattasoglio, a university professor and parish priest known for his affinity with liberation theologians and his personal opposition to his doctrinally sound predecessor.

The French non-official daily of the Catholic episcopate, La Croix, spoke of the nomination as “another radical change at the head of one of the most important dioceses of Latin America.” The speed with which Thorne was deposed – oftentimes, bishops who tender their mandatory resignation when they turn 75 will stay on a few months or years before it is accepted by Rome – is reminiscent of the way in which Archbishop Hector Aguer was replaced within days by the ghostwriter of Amoris Laetitia, Bishop Victor Manuel “Tucho” Fernandez, a close confidant of Pope Francis. Aguer was even ordered to leave the archdiocese immediately.

In both cases, staunch defenders of Catholic doctrine and defenders of life have been replaced by tenants of the “theology of the people” – in the case of Fernandez – or the indigenist “theology of regeneration” by which Mattasoglio wants to “rethink the faith” through the “desire for interior reconstruction” so that the individual can recover his or her “social force.” In what Mattasoglio’s admirers present as a “rethinking” of liberation theology, his “regeneration theology” particularly appeals to young people, according to former writings of the new Archbishop of Lima.

Regeneration, according to Mattasoglio, is a theological proposal that also aims at “regenerating obsolete” structures of the Church of today in Latin America, as well as promoting a “sustainable society” with as a priority the fight against “environmental destruction.”

Seen through the eyes of a left-leaning blogger, the new Archbishop must have been chosen for his personal “apocalyptic” emphasis on the ecological crisis, for which Cardinal Cipriani had little time. Cardinal Petro Barreto of Peru, who was given his hat by Pope Francis last June, has the same “ecological” penchant. This looks like a pattern, and it fits in neatly with the concerns of the United Nations and other internationalist bodies intent on changing hearts and minds, and society “for the Planet.”

According to the Spanish-speaking website infovaticana.com, quoting unnamed sources, Castillo had links many years back with the Communist Revolutionary Party and with the terrorist group “Shining Path” in Peru. Infovaticana columnist La Cigüeña De La Torre called his nomination “a summit of disgrace.” Pope Francis “has chosen the worst for Lima,” he wrote.

Mattasoglio was born in 1950, first studied sociology and only later joined the seminary in Lima. He graduated in theology at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome in 1983 and was ordained at the relatively late age of 34, having deliberately chosen to follow lay studies before preparing to become a priest.

His official biography published on the Vatican website does not underscore Mattasoglio’s early and ongoing friendship with several figureheads of the Liberation theology movement. Dominican Gustavo Gutierrez, who was considered as its “father” and gave it its name, was close to Mattasoglio in the young man’s formative years at the Peruvian National Union of Catholic Students. When Gutierrez turned 90 last year, the future Archbishop of Lima fondly recalled in an interview the lengthy debates that he and other priests and lay people had with him about Liberation theology and the Church’s “preferential option for the poor,” which is still at the heart of his own thinking.

Another great friend was Cardinal Juan Landazuri Ricketts, a former archbishop of Lima who ordained him in 1984. Landazuri, a Franciscan, was also known for his support for liberation theologians. At the end of the 1960s, he left the Archbishop's Palace of Lima to live in a small house in a poor area of the city.

Mattasoglio is also close to Bishop Luis Bambarén, a 90-year-old Jesuit who will be one of the two consecrators when he is ordained Bishop on March 2 in Lima. Bambarén was formerly the auxiliary bishop of Lima where he called himself the “bishop of the young peoples,” and president of the Peruvian Bishops’ Conference. Bambarén was involved in socialist politics and had several spectacular public disputes with Cardinal Thorne.

Upon learning of Mattasoglio’s nomination, Bambarén presented him with the crosier Cardinal Landazuri had bequeathed him. “I never used it out of respect but it seems right that I should give it to you. He received you into seminary, he ordained you and now he’s also handing you his crosier,” he said.

Gambarén has close links with Pope Francis, whom he worked with during two former synods. He told El Comercio in Peru: “That’s why when they named him Pope in March 2013, I traveled in June to greet him. He said to me: ‘You’re the revolutionary bishop from Peru.’ I answered: ‘And you’re the revolutionary Pope.’ He took me by the arm and said to me: “Then we shall walk together.”

If this is Mattasoglio’s entourage, he himself fits in well. His doctoral thesis on Bartolomé de Las Casas, the XVIth century Dominican who painted the Spanish Conquistadors uniformly black, insists on the “innate virtue” that religious claimed to have found in all the Indians he met in the just-discovered Americas, and their supposed capacity to love the Christian enemies who came to exploit them; a goodness that made their miraculous conversion by God himself possible. Some of these themes are still running strong in the Marxist anti-colonialist and indigenist streak of thought that is so prevalent in Latin America.

As a professor at the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru, Mattasoglio was in direct opposition to its then Grand Chancellor, Cardinal Cipriani, who tried to quash the unorthodox teaching that was rampant. In 2013, the Cardinal decided not to renew the canonical mandate by which Castillo and three other professors were allowed to teach theology.

At that point, the university had already lost its “Catholic and Pontifical” labels in 2012 under Pope Benedict XVI because it refused to obey the new ecclesiastical rules governing officially Catholic colleges. It also refused to implement Cipriani’s orders regarding Mattasoglio.

Mattasoglio, according to sources quoted by Infovaticana, then entered into revolt against his Archbishop, refusing to accept pastoral responsibilities in the diocese and staying away from retreats and liturgical functions where all the local priests were invited and expected to attend.

The critical situation at the Catholic University of Peru was solved through a direct intervention of Pope Francis: the “Catholic” and “Pontifical” labels were retrieved in October 2016 “ad experimentum” for five years. Cardinal Versaldi of the Congregation for Catholic Education was named interim Grand Chancellor. As the Archbishop of Lima who normally occupies this function, Mattassoglio will retrieve the function when he takes over from Cipriani in March.

In many ways, Mattasoglio speaks and thinks as Pope Francis, pleading for “discernment” rather than saying “this is allowed and that is not.”

Over the last year, Mattasoglio has been the parish priest of St. Francis the Apostle in the Rimac district of Lima. He chose to say the main Sunday Mass in the open air, in a park where he shares space with a five-a-side football terrain and a skateboard terrain.

“The Pope says we should be there where the new narratives are; we cannot evangelize by saying here are the norms. All that is beautifully present, but also the narratives of ill-treated people, or in this nice game (of five-a-side football), or in this skating, all of that is glorifying God,” he said during a Sunday homily.

In an interview with Caretas on Thursday, Mattasoglio said he wanted to distinguish himself as the new Archbishop of Lima by introducing “reflection” rather than preconceptions. He quoted Pope Francis saying the Church is “two or three centuries late.” “We haven’t accompanied man in his own quests, we are afraid of searches because they are not under our control,” he explained.

According to Mattasoglio, calling Liberation theology “left wing or Marxist is stupid” because Marxism “creates liberation in this world, without a transcendent North.” “We believe in this world and in the other,” he said.

But the Vatican condemned Liberation theology, the interviewer remarked.

Mattasoglio responded,“Never condemned it. Why? Because it is an evangelical element. It would have condemned Christ. Christ is Christ the liberator. That’s in the Bible. Obviously, there was a call to correct certain of its aspects that could be interpreted in different ways, and that besides, because of the context of the times, were revolutionary. They thought Revolution and liberation were the same thing. Revolution is an action taken by some, that in some cases has a violent note, and not in others.”

He added that Gustavo Gutierrez is today “an Orthodox theologian of the Church,” because the church never corrected his theory as such: “He was condemned by conservatives, not officially by the Church.” Mattasoglio says that for 20 years Gutierrez’ theory has been assessed by the Church and that he has corrected all that was asked of him.

The interviewer noted that Mattasoglio is taking over from someone who had as one of his pillars the right to life, the opposition to the right to abortion, sexual and reproductive rights.

Mattasoglio replied: “What I think is that the Pope Francis has opened an era in which we'll have to see how much of what we are saying has important aspects that we need to keep and what new things are presenting things that we need to clarify. Because there are many things that are more complex.”

Like abortion, for example? asked the interviewer. He did not get a clear answer:

"With abortion, in principle, there is no way of going back. Every abortion is of itself the destruction of a life. As long as there's a doubt, you can't decide. So I prefer to believe that there is a life and that it stopped. But there are many people you need to help not to live in trauma because of such a thing. This is at the moral level. At the legal level, I haven't studied the theme much, but it seems to me problematic when someone wants to make laws and the Church is trying to stop them. What is necessary is a clarifying dialogue, not to turn this into a political fight, because life is a question of education. I think people need to reflect and decide freely. If they make a mistake, we go on explaining, helping them to become aware.”

The future archbishop also has his ideas on women's priesthood. “It's an old problem in the Church. There are commissions that are studying it. The position of the Church is that the group Jesus charged with directing the faithful were all men. Until now, that has been respected. However, the modern world also has a range of elements saying other things can exist. There needs to be a debate. It's difficult, but I don't say it’s impossible.”

Given all this, it will not be surprising if Mattasoglio plays a major role at the upcoming Pan-Amazonian synod in Rome, where the issues of the environment, theology of the people, “Indian” theology and the role of women in liturgy will certainly play a large part. Thorne would have been very much out of place.

Peru — one of the most profoundly Catholic countries not only in Latin America but in the world, where 89 percent of the population are baptized Catholics and 78 percent go to church every Sunday — will be a heavyweight at the Synod. With a new Archbishop of Lima so well in tune with the Synod's objectives, as outlined in the preparatory document, things will certainly be a lot easier.

[LSN] 2267.SSA4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


CF NEWS

United Kingdom Abortion bigwig wants UK to mirror New York’s abortion-till-birth law

A FurediSPUC reports -- People across the world have been shocked at the passing of an extreme new abortion bill in New York, which removes abortion from penal law, and allows it up to birth in some cases. This has been compounded by some American politicians defending abortion at the very moment of birth, and even infanticide.

What they are asking British politicians to support

SPUC has been warning that what politicians in New York have done is very much what the abortion lobby here is attempting to achieve. Now, that has been confirmed beyond all possible doubt — from the mouth of Britain's top abortion provider.

Writing in Spiked online, Ann Furedi, chief executive of the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS), praises the horrific new law in New York as "a breakthrough for choice". She goes on to say (emphasis ours):

"New York State has just signed into law an abortion-rights bill that is close to what many of us have been campaigning for in the UK. The Reproductive Health Act (RHA) removes the need for a doctor to perform some abortions, and takes abortion out of the criminal code, making it a public-health issue.

This is pretty much what the British Pregnancy Advisory Service, and other pro-choice organisations that are supporting the #WeTrustWomen campaign, have been asking British politicians to support."

She is referring to the campaign to decriminalise abortion — to remove it from the criminal law.

"Safe" abortion

Ms Furedi (who has openly said that abortion should be allowed up to birth, including because the baby's a girl) then defends allowing healthcare workers other than doctors providing abortions, saying, "Abortion is safe and nurses and midwives are well placed to provide it." (When describing abortion as "safe" she does not mention the doctor who was recently struck off for endangering women's lives at a BPAS clinic, or the 11 women who were transferred for emergency hospital treatment after suffering serious injuries in a three-month period at the same clinic).

Late-term abortion "obvious and humane"

However, Ms Furedi saves her highest praise for the aspect of the New York law which has sparked the most outrage — late-term abortions. She writes: "What we’d like in Britain is for politicians to accept what policymakers in New York have agreed. Paradoxically, what abortion providers in New York need is public and political support for the other change introduced by the RHA — a provision that we have in Britain already, and is seen by most people as obvious and humane. The clause in the RHA that has caused the most heated debate is one that allows abortions after 24 weeks in cases where there is an 'absence of fetal viability'."

This already happens in the UK

She leaves out the fact that the RHA also allows third-trimester abortions if the "life or health" of the mother is at risk — a notoriously slippery criterion — but correctly says, "In Britain, since 1990, the law has allowed for abortion without time limit when a pregnancy is affected by a serious abnormality."

Ms Furedi says the "numbers are tiny" for these types of abortions, but a recent parliamentary question revealed that nearly 15,000 babies that were over 20 weeks gestation have died by abortion in the last five years, and a casual look at the abortion statistics shows that the majority are not for "serious abnormalities", however the term is defined. This "obvious and humane" provision has led to heartbreaking stories of babies being born alive during abortions and left to die.

A timely warning

Ann Furedi sums up her philosophy, saying, "abortion should never be a crime when a woman believes that ending her own pregnancy is the right thing to do."

The RHA in New York has rightly caused outrage. However, it also serves as a reminder that the provision that has sparked the most heated debate - late-term abortions — already happens on a large scale here in the UK. As the other provisions in the bill, Ann Furedi and her allies in Parliament have made it clear that they are determined to go to any lengths (including hijacking a domestic abuse bill) to impose an equally extreme abortion regime here.

 

[SPUC] 2267.7c

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


CF NEWS

United States The LA Religious Education Congress is a blueprint for obliterating the Faith

PETER LaFAVE writes for OnePeterFive -- If one were looking for a front-row seat to comprehend the disarray that’s befallen the Catholic Church, one needn’t look far from the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress (“REC”), taking place this March 21–24 at the Anaheim Convention Center. Though the REC, sponsored by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, is hailed as the largest annual convention of Catholics in the country, drawing nearly 40,000 Catholic educators and students each year, it provides a stark representation of the issues plaguing the Church — namely, the failure to handle the abuse crisis, heterodoxy, and the disintegration of the liturgy.
The Congress is no stranger to controversy. In 1994, the California Coalition of Concerned Catholics raised concerns over the REC’s promotion of former priest Daniel McGuire, a vocal proponent of abortion. Though McGuire’s appearance was revoked, the Congress has continued to raise concerns in years since, and 2019 will be not at all different.

This year’s Congress will feature the retired and disgraced Cardinal Roger Mahony giving a workshop to junior high and high school students regarding “Volatile Immigration Issues.” The cardinal has concelebrated Mass at previous congresses alongside Archbishop José Gomez and Bishop Kevin Vann of the Diocese of Orange. His appearance comes despite the fact that he was stripped by Archbishop Gomez of all “administrative or public duties” in 2013, following revelations of his cover-up of homosexual abuse in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. Aside from his malfeasance on abuse, Cardinal Mahony embodies the decay that has gutted the Church for the past 60 years — from his broadsides against Mother Angelica and his insistence on giving the Eucharist to pro-abortion politicians to his construction of a $250-million modernist-style concrete cathedral adjacent to the 101 freeway in downtown Los Angeles.

In his testimony last August, Archbishop Viganò recounted how former cardinal McCarrick had been rehabilitated by Pope Francis. Mahony’s prominent appearances at the Congress, his materialization at recent years’ confirmations, and the subsequent silence of current Church leaders have left Angeleno Catholics to speculate if Cardinal Mahony has obtained similar reprieve and wonder why clerical leaders in the Dioceses of Los Angeles and Orange (where the event is held) have not publicly addressed this.

The cardinal’s presence isn’t the only visualization of the crisis at the event.

Also speaking at the 2019 Congress will be Fr. James Martin on “LGBT Spirituality.” Fr. Martin is no stranger to controversy, drawing critiques from both Cardinal Robert Sarah and Archbishop Charles Chaput in 2017 regarding Martin’s approach to and intentional ambiguity on the issue. Martin has also drawn criticism for his wholehearted endorsement of the Manhattan-based gay ministry Out at St. Paul, whose activities include outings to local gay bars; “Pride Mass”; and social media postings celebrating St. John of the Cross’s “gay soul,” drag shows, and “Queer Lady of Guadalupe,” each of which offends the senses of the faithful and denigrates the dignity of our church’s treasures.

Other presentations at the 2019 REC will include the following topics from a variety of presenters: “LGBT Ministry & Justice,” “Building Bridges with Catholics Who Are Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender or Questioning,” and “Human Sexuality and the Catholic Church.” Last year’s conference featured five workshops on “LGBT Ministry” including one titled “Transgender in Our Schools: One Bread, One Body” whose presenters included a female-to-“male” transgender panelist, offering discussions about gender identity and transgenderism, including proper use of gender pronouns and acronyms and more awareness for Catholic schools to adjust their uniform policies to accommodate children wishing to “transition.” The presentation included a slide featuring “the Genderbread Person” an image used to promote gender ideology to young children in schools. One quotation from the slide: “Gender identity is how you, in your head, think about yourself.” According to one attendee, the panel emphatically stated that there was nothing dangerous about letting young children “transition.” All of this under the banner of religious education.

The liturgy at the congress leave much to be desired. The Masses — held in the large convention center surrounding a wooden table altar and no visible tabernacle — feature large jazz ensembles, rock bands, modern anthems of Haugen and Schutte, and liturgical dancers twirling wooden bowls of incense around the altar. The 2014 Congress offered an “Urban Fusion” Mass.

Pope Benedict wrote prophetically in 1997 that the crisis within the Church was rooted in some part to the “collapse of the liturgy.” Is it any wonder that young people are leaving the Church en masse, and those who stay increasingly prefer the traditional reverence of the past?

In the wake of the current catastrophe within the Church, Archbishop Gomez has stated, “I believe we need to respond to this crisis with a new call to penance and purification and a new dedication to leading holy lives.” If we are to take this exhortation seriously, we must start by purifying the Church of its failed leaders, spiritual arsonists, ambiguity, mediocrity, and stupid liturgy, both in the Congress and the Church at large.

[1P5] 2267.7a

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


CF NEWS

International Michael Voris

Vade, propheta ad populum meum '. . flicking his whip at the Bishops, cutting them in tender places, throwing stones at Sacred Congregations, and discharging pea shooters at Cardinals' (Newman).

 

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CF NEWS

International gloria.tv.news

 

[gloria.tv] 2267.9

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


CF NEWS

International Some jihad headlines of the week


Kuwait : Cleric : Non-Muslims must convert or be killed, those who leave Islam must be killed

Nigeria: Muslims murder at least 60, set homes on fire, chase those fleeing and kill them

Saudi Arabia : App developed to stop women travelling without permission of male guardians

Somalia: Muslims murder 11, injure 10 with car bomb at busy shopping mall

UK: Muslim screaming “Allah is god” beats Christian with metal bar

USA : New Jersey Imam: Muslims should reject “freedom of speech, of religion, of the press”

USA : South Carolina man converts to Islam, plants explosives all over Anderson County

 

 

[CF News] 2267.10

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


CF NEWS

International The World Over with Raymond Arroyo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

Newman

 

Newman

 

"Diversity of religions is intended by God"? Dr Newman comments.

FR. JOHN HUNWICKE blogs -- So PF has agreed with a Moslem cleric that religious pluralism and diversity are willed by God.

I am rather interested in what other Moslem scholars might have to say about this. Some of them are quite sound chaps when it comes to the errors of Relativism.

Fr Zed has given a characteristically fine and intelligent interpretation of PF's words. As have some others.

Having perused them, I am also rather interested in what some parts of the Jewish Community might think of any suggestion that the Holocaust was willed by God as part of His "permissive will".

What Fr Zed and others have done is (this is not irony; I mean it) absolutely essential; it is truly necessary. In the great task which some future pontificate will inherit, of putting the Papal Magisterium back up on its feet after the disasters of this pontificate, it wo'n't do just to say "That man was repeatedly, disastrously, wrong". Because the obvious corollary of this is that any pope may be horribly wrong. The standing of the Successor of S Peter will need to be restored, for the good of the Chyrch and for however much time there will be before the End. So, surely, it will have to be said that there are ambiguities in his scripts which need to be interpreted carefully and authoritatively in order to rescue them, and him, from apparent heresy.

But I do think it is outrageous that pastors and academics should have to waste their time dreaming up these 'interpretations' of yet another PF disaster. By the way: was Cardinal Ladaria shown this text?

Blessed John Henry Newman dealt succinctly with this particular heresy in the biglietto speech which he delivered on receiving the official notification that he was to be a Cardinal.

"For thirty, forty, fifty years I have resisted to the best of my powers the spirit of liberalism in religion. Never did Holy Church need champions against it more sorely than now, when, alas! it is an error overspreading, as a snare, the whole earth ... Liberalism in religion is the doctrine that there is no positive truth in religion, but that one creed is as good as another, and this is the teaching which is gaining substance and force daily. It is inconsistent with any recognition of any religion, as true. It teaches that all are to be tolerated, for all are matters of opinion. Revealed religion is not a truth, but a sentiment and a taste; not an objective fact, not miraculous; and it is the right of each individual to make it say just what strikes his fancy."

Actually ... come to think of it ... you'd better keep quiet about all this. Newman is due to be canonised later this year; it would be a shame to put a spanner in the works (do Americans use that expression?) at this stage in the proceedings.

I have a terrible vision in my imagination of PF, dear poppet that he is, tottering out of S Peter's, propped up as ever by poor Mgr Marini; tearing up the text prepared for him to read (he quite likes doing that) and saying"I'm cancelling the canonisation, and actually I'm dismissing this Newman from being a Beatus. I'd never realised what a Rigid Pharisaical Pelagian Sourpuss Elitist Coprophiliac he was. AND THAT'S MAGISTERIUM!!!"

You wouldn't want that to happen, would you? Just when we're all looking forward to having JHN on the Calendar as a Double of the First Cless with a Common Octave?

So ... ... 'nuff said ... ... Shhhhhhh!

[liturgicalnotes] 2267.11

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

Correspondence

letterbox

 

The homosexual network

JOHN-HENRY WESTEN and the entire team at LifeSiteNews write - The problem of homosexual networks in the Catholic Church has brought about the suffering of victims and a crisis for the Church.

Facing an internal meltdown and justifiably taking flak from the media, Pope Francis has summoned Bishops, including many Cardinals, from around the world to Rome, between February 21-24, to discuss and take action on the issue of the protection of minors.

This petition, in a spirit of filial criticism, asks that the prelates of the world now take drastic measures to deal firmly with, and eradicate, homosexual networks which have taken root in the Church.

The unholy predatory conduct of a far-reaching network of persons who are exercising sodomy in the Church and who support a 'homosexual culture' is coming to light with increasing intensity.

With 80% of the victims of clerical sexual abuse being male adolescents, it is clear that they are victims of homosexual abuse, and not just pedophilia.

All of this is having a tremendously damaging effect upon the honor of the Catholic Church and her members and is estranging many people from the Faith.

Petition

This petition has broad support across the Catholic world, with the two co-sponsors being: Pro Ecclesia (Switzerland) and LifeSifeNews.

Cardinal Mueller and Bishop Schneider also support this petition, along with 12 other international dignitaries.

In a word, this petition asks that the Bishops take several concrete measures to remedy this crisis, up to and including the suspension, public shaming, and defrocking of any cleric (priest, Bishop, Cardinal, etc.) who is guilty of an offense against the Sixth Commandment with a minor, or sodomy or adultery with an adult.

Please CLICK HERE to find out more about the petition and its sponsors. Then, please SIGN and SHARE with your like-minded friends, family and relations.

Your signature will encourage the bishops to do the right thing at their upcoming conference!

[LSN] 2267.12

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

Book reviews

 

Bad Shepherds

 

Continuing conflict

Bad Shepherds : The Dark Years in Which the Faithful Thrived While Bishops Did the Devil's Work. Rod Bennett, Sophia Institute Press, ISBN 978-1-622827-145

TIM MATTHEWS writes - Surveying the current grim landscape of scandal in the Church, many shocked Catholics are tempted to leave their Church, forgetful of how far back runs the story of betrayal from within.

In this book, journalist-historian Rod Bennett protests (in easily-read and conversational style), that he would have preferred to have written about saints than the 'poisonous rats who infest the pages ahead' but considers it necessary to report on an extensive gallery of rogue shepherds, from Bishop Eusebius of Nicomedia who sold out Church to the Roman Emperor, to the bad shepherds in France whose faults led to the Reign of Terror in the 18th-century, and of more besides.

And why?

Because, he says, if more of us realised just how bad our shepherds can really get, and ever have been, we might, for lack of surprise, be better fortified when these new Judases turn up in our own day.

A major key running through the book is the striking fact that it is always the laity who tend to stand firm when the rogue shepherds are at their worst.

In some vivid detail Bennett examines some of the horrors the Church has had to face, beginning with the Arian heresy of the 4th century.

Bad shepherd Arias died at the beginning of the affair making 'a cranky tone-deaf speech' to the founding delegates of Nicaea. These followers were 'quislings, the new Pharisees' who divided their attentions on how to stay on good terms with the surrounding culture and how to gain influence in government. (What here is new?).

Cowardice was the keyword. 'Practically every horror of which the Arian party descended was occasioned by fear - fear of losing the 'lifestyle to which they had become accustomed'.

This period was perhaps, says Bennett, the closest the Church has ever become to being overthrown - eight out of ten Catholic bishoprics worldwide were in the hands of counterfeit Christians; the number of Sees remaining in orthodox hands could be 'counted on the fingers of one hand'. And yet, not for the last time, it was the laity that stood firm.

Next, came the Barbarians' rush to the gates. This emerged only after many years of rust and decay in the Roman Empire, a period of laziness and luxury. The years between 552-1123 might be considered a sort of Mad Max period of the postapocalyptic Church. Bad bishops returned with a vengeance, and it became a period from which Luther and the Protestant Reformers were to draw their juiciest horror stories.

While the East stood firm, the central control over the western portion of the Roman Empire fell and bad shepherds around the fringes of the Empire sowed the seeds of future trouble.. The Prophet of Islam found two nations, East and West, weakened by bad Christianity and the Catholic authorities showed little haste to reform. In 742 St Boniface wrote a letter to Pope Zachary; 'all of ecclesiastical order and discipline has been set at nought and trodden underfoot . . . No wickedness is a bar to the priesthood or the episcopacy'.

When Charlemagne died he left his realm to unworthy heirs, and the whole undertaking disintegrated, dragging the Western Church down to a degree few of us today can even imagine. The papacy was up for grabs. Scandal was rife: house servants testified that the Pope practically made the sacred Palace into a brothel. When Pope John XII's confessor was to witness one of his indiscretions, the Pope had his eyes poked out; The sodomite Pope Benedict IX was elevated by his father to the Fisherman's See possibly at the age of 12. Simony became the besetting sin of the age. And Islam grew stronger and stronger.

But the Church did overcome this Age of Iron. It survived the bad shepherds - and the men and women who responded to the call were, once again, the laity.R People like Chaucer, Dante, Giotto, Petrach, Marco Polo, St Louis IX, and Richard the Lionheart.

But then, come the 14th century, deprived of solid doctrine, the laity began to take on bad ideas, often spread by shepherds who were simply ignorant; sub-Christian notions crept back into distorted Catholic teaching. Efforts were made to sort out these fables and false ideas - but only after the Protestant revolt.

Bennett writes, 'It ought to go without saying, but all the men who created Protestantism were Catholics' - Wycliffe, Hus, Luther, Zwingli, and Calvin, a Swiss seminarian. They saw that things were wrong and were in revolt - with a bewildered laity in the middle. The whole tragedy was summed up by Chesterton: 'The reformer is always right about what is wrong. He is generally wrong about what is right'. Nationalism was born; former brothers and sisters in Christ were becoming foreigners to each other. Each new church quarrelling and anathematizing, yet each had been Catholic to begin with.

Bennett's next bad shepherd is Cardinal Richelieu whose determination to put France back on top, even at the cost of the Catholic Faith, achieved ugly long-term results and were the first steps leading towards the conflagration that almost destroyed Christian civilisation in the 20th century. Bad shepherds became an excuse for slaughtering the sheep and the government attempted to suppress the Catholic Faith altogether.

But again the laity spoke. Two regions, The Vendée and the City of Lyons put up a valiant fight, but one that, alas, eventually failed and between September 1793 and July 1794 the revolutionary leaders raged their Reign of Terror, with up to 50,000 civilians massacred.

Eventually Napoleon Bonaparte rose up to salvage what was worth saving, He had witnessed how, just as in the Arian crisis, the laity had stood strong while so many of their shepherds turned bad. He realised that the Catholic faith was permanent and immovable in the hearts of the people. To wage war against it would be 'like trying to extinguish the sun'.

Rod Bennett tells a sobering story which, he warns, 'reluctant, unenthusiastic, sad and forbearing' will certainly continue. The conflict is not yet over.

[CF News] 2267.13

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


CF NEWS

What Bugnini was thinking when he destroyed the Catholic Mass

Annibale Bugnini: Reformer of the Liturgy, Yves Chiron, Angelico Press, 2018

ChinonDR. PETER KWASNIEWSKI writes for OnePeterFive -- In G.K. Chesterton’s story “The Queer Feet,” Father Brown says:

'A crime is like any other work of art. Don’t look surprised; crimes are by no means the only works of art that come from an infernal workshop. But every work of art, divine or diabolic, has one indispensable mark — I mean, that the centre of it is simple, however much the fulfilment may be complicated. Thus, in Hamlet, let us say, the grotesqueness of the grave-digger, the flowers of the mad girl, the fantastic finery of Osric, the pallor of the ghost and the grin of the skull are all oddities in a sort of tangled wreath round one plain tragic figure of a man in black'. [i]

This passage came to my mind when reading the newly translated recent biography Annibale Bugnini: Reformer of the Liturgy by the prolific and well respected French historian Yves Chiron. The wide-ranging liturgical reform that took place in the Catholic Church predominantly between the years 1950 and 1975 was, indeed, like Hamlet, a complicated business, involving hundreds of bishops and experts, several popes, an ecumenical council, and countless publications, but at the center of it stood “one plain tragic figure of a man in black” — or perhaps we might say black with red piping: Msgr. (later Archbishop) Annibale Bugnini, a Vincentian priest who was one of the few men who had a hand in this quarter-century reform from its beginning nearly to its end.

Those who have heard of Annibale Bugnini (1912–1982) tend to think of him either as an evil schemer bent on the destruction of the Catholic Faith or as a talented bureaucrat who smoothly guided a complex liturgical reform to its happy conclusion. This book, which is well researched yet mercifully compact for a modern biography, portrays a more complex and human figure. That he was totally convinced of and consistently acted upon various rationalist and pastoral theories about how liturgy “ought to be” is indisputable, and this book provides copious documentation of it, but not all of his ideas were welcomed by those in authority, and he did eventually run afoul of the pope to whose itching ear and promulgating pen he had enjoyed such uninhibited access.

Through Chiron’s book we become acquainted with the life of a man who was singularly influential in marshaling the forces necessary for an unprecedented revision of Roman Catholic worship. One sees how it came about, step by step, pope by pope, committee by committee, book by book. It is truly one of the most astonishing stories in the history of Catholicism, and one about which Henry Sire rightly quips: “The story of how the liturgical revolution was put through is one that hampers the historian by its very enormity; he would wish, for his own sake, to have a less unbelievable tale to tell.”[ii] With Chiron patiently taking the reader through the phases of Bugnini’s life and activity, the tale becomes a little less unbelievable, albeit no less an enormity, as each daring maneuver leads to a new opening, a new opportunity, and new changes [iii].

Was Bugnini a mastermind, one of those rare Faustian individuals who singlehandedly change the course of history, or was he a small-minded ideologue and opportunist? The evidence presented in this biography tends to support the latter. Additional evidence not discussed by Chiron lends support to the same interpretation. In a memorable address in Montreal, Canada in 1982, Archbishop Lefebvre shared the story of a meeting he attended with other superiors general in Rome in the mid-1960s:

'I had the occasion to see for myself what influence Fr. Bugnini had. One wonders how such a thing as this could have happened at Rome. At that time immediately after the Council, I was Superior General of the Congregation of the Fathers of the Holy Ghost and we had a meeting of the Superiors General at Rome. We had asked Fr. Bugnini to explain to us what his New Mass was, for this was not at all a small event. Immediately after the Council talk was heard of the ‘Normative Mass’, the ‘New Mass’, the ‘Novus Ordo’. What did all this mean? …

'Fr. Bugnini, with much confidence, explained what the Normative Mass would be; this will be changed, that will be changed and we will put in place another Offertory. We will be able to reduce the communion prayers. We will be able to have several different formats for the beginning of Mass. We will be able to say the Mass in the vernacular tongue. …

'Personally I was myself so stunned that I remained mute, although I generally speak freely when it is a question of opposing those with whom I am not in agreement. I could not utter a word. How could it be possible for this man before me to be entrusted with the entire reform of the Catholic Liturgy, the entire reform of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, of the sacraments, of the Breviary, and of all our prayers? Where are we going? Where is the Church going?

'
Two Superiors General had the courage to speak out. One of them asked Fr. Bugnini: “Is this an active participation, that is a bodily participation, that is to say with vocal prayers, or is it a spiritual participation? In any case you have spoken so much of the participation of the faithful that it seems you can no longer justify Mass celebrated without the faithful. Your entire Mass has been fabricated around the participation of the faithful. We Benedictines celebrate our Masses without the assistance of the faithful. Does this mean that we must discontinue our private Masses, since we do not have faithful to participate in them?”

'I repeat to you exactly that which Fr. Bugnini said. I have it still in my ears, so much did it strike me: “To speak truthfully, we didn’t think of that,” he said!

'Afterwards another arose and said: “Reverend Father, you have said that we will suppress this and we will suppress that, that we will replace this thing by that and always by shorter prayers. I have the impression that your new Mass could be said in ten or twelve minutes or at the most a quarter of an hour. This is not reasonable. This is not respectful towards such an act of the Church.” Well, this is what he replied: “We can always add something.” Is this for real? I heard it myself. If somebody had told me the story I would perhaps have doubted it, but I heard it myself'. [iv]

When we read an account like this, we are tempted to think it an exaggeration. Chiron’s careful, almost surgical examination of original documents proves that it is nothing of the kind. While studiously avoiding romanticization or caricature, Chiron paints a portrait of his protagonist that harmonizes with such accounts as Lefebvre’s, or that of Bouyer in his Memoirs. Bugnini was indeed an adroit manager, manipulator, massager, and messenger. He knew how to gather an “all-star” team that would work in the direction he thought best. He knew how to win over the pope to his ideas. He knew when to speak up and when to keep silent. To take one example, he urged the preconciliar preparatory commission on liturgy not to put forth too many radical ideas lest their entire project of reform be shot down; it was enough, Bugnini said, to offer general innocuous-sounding indications and to fill out the details later in committee work.

The term “Machiavellian” might have to be excluded only because there is no smoking-gun evidence of malice. Rather, Bugnini is that oddest of odd figures: the seemingly well intentioned Machiavellian who stifles his opponents because