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The Devil Usually Lurks in the Footnotes: Footnote 351

satan_the_devil_painting_by_Michael_Pacher

One thing I have learned in 34 years in the law mines is that the most important passages of documents are often carefully concealed in footnotes.

 

All you need to know about Amoris Laetitia:

 

 

Footnote 351:

In certain cases, this can include the help of the sacraments. Hence, “I want to remind priests that the confessional must not be a torture chamber, but rather an encounter with the Lord’s mercy” (Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium  [24 November 2013], 44: AAS 105 [2013],  1038). I would also point out that the Eucharist “is not a prize for the perfect, but a powerful medicine and nourishment for the weak” (ibid., 47: 1039).

Thus the Pope negates the clear teaching of Christ.  I once asserted that the current Pontiff was the worst Pope since Alexander VI.  I now must apologize to Alexander VI.  With all his crimes he at least never proclaimed heresy.

 

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Donald R. McClarey

Cradle Catholic. Active in the pro-life movement since 1973. Father of three and happily married for 35 years. Small town lawyer and amateur historian. Former president of the board of directors of the local crisis pregnancy center for a decade.

52 Comments

  1. This is bad. Francis clubs Jesus with his Mercy Stick and invites priests and bishops to do what he dare not do. “Falling short of an ideal” seems to be the language now, which is entirely different from “committing adultery.” How do you even confess “falling short of an ideal,” and have genuine contrition if you are not intending to change anything? Will such confessions even be valid?This will lead to the ridiculous situation of how much Mercy you get depends entirely on your diocese. Pope Francis just gave a huge wink to anyone who wants to bring divorced and remarried people into the communion line, or homosexual couples, for that matter.

  2. @The Bear: It is an all out assault on the Church in order to destroy it by attacking the sources of grace, the Sacraments. People see clearly the attack on Matrimony, the Eucharist, Penance/Confession/Reconciliation. But how can Holy Orders survive if the priests [those who agree] administer sacrilegious sacraments? And what will happen to those who refuse?

  3. Marriage has been fatally undermined as long as accomodations like living as brother and sister have existed and not been condemned.

    The stage has been set and well prepared for this.

  4. One problem with the papacy post Paul resisting ” Peter to his face ” in Galatians…is that Popes can avoid hardball cross examinations…forever. Media reporters want repeat access so they don’t hardball question Popes. And all Catholic clergy salaries and pensions and locations of one’s home… lead to Rome so that silences most clergy. And laity writers at e.g. Catholic Answers won’t risk a good salary by fraternally correcting Popes….hence seemingly every title I see by one I notice seems safe…9 things to know about St. Cyprian…etc. Hence I salute Ed Peters who was critical today and whose salary is tied to the Church. Here’s a little from tha canon lawyer: ” 4. In AL 297, Francis writes: “No one can be condemned for ever, because that is not the logic of the Gospel!” To the contrary, it is precisely the logic of the Gospel that one can be condemned forever. CCC 1034-1035. If one meant, say, that no one can be ‘condemned for ever’ by earthly authority, one should have said so. But, of course, withholding holy Communion from those in “public and permanent adultery” is not a “condemnation” at all, so the point being made is not clear.”

  5. And now those who told us the pope could never do such a thing will explain to us why we have to shut up and accept it since the pope did it.

    Validating the worst Protestant caricatures of the papacy in one fell swoop.

    Well, to be fair, they’ve been doing that since March 2013–but this one will be the cement over the gravesite.

  6. I read the whole thing today, and this footnote of Justice Scalia’s ran through my mind a couple of times:
    “The Supreme Court of the United States has descended from the disciplined legal reasoning of John Marshall and Joseph Story to the mystical aphorisms of fortune cookies.”

    As for the Bear’s comment: “This will lead to the ridiculous situation of how much Mercy you get depends entirely on your diocese,” I agree, and it will lead to forum shopping.

  7. […] how much Mercy you get depends entirely on your diocese.
    *
    Actually it is between a person and their pastor in the internal forum. With a stroke of the pen even the Bishops have been undermined. Talk about a demolition job!

  8. It should be pointed out that the phrase ‘I would also point out that the Eucharist “is not a prize for the perfect, but a powerful medicine and nourishment for the weak” (Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium [24 November 2013]., 47: 1039]’ has always been valid Catholic teaching. It is a pastoral guide for people who have fallen into sin through obsession, compulsion or addiction. It is not meant to be applied to other situations.

  9. Sorry, FMShyanauya, but I was merely quoting from memory part of the abridged Catholic Encyclopedia that was bound with the family Bible that my parents were given for their wedding. As I recall the copyright was 1950, so we are talking about an abridgement of the 1914 Catholic Encyclopedia.

  10. FMShyanauya, you criticize the Pope for not knowing the Catechism, but you need to took at CCC 1860: “The promptings of feelings and passions can also diminish the voluntary and free character of the offense, as can external pressures or pathological disorders.” So, the essence of this footnote IS valid Catholic theology and pastoral practice.

    HOWEVER, no one in their right mind could use this argument for liberal application of the sacraments for the divorced and remarried. Entering into a second civil marriage cannot be seen as a pathological disorder, and of course doing so would prevent the future regularization of that marriage should the first end in annulment or death of the other party.
    The conclusion is not that the footnote is intrinsically wrong, only that it is misapplied.

  11. Post for the benefit of those who say Kasper’s Francis’ Proposal is absent in Amoris Laetitia.
    *
    And what does the Vatican say the Pope says in regarding access to the sacraments for people who live in ‘irregular’ situations?

    “Naturally this poses the question: what does the Pope say in relation to access to the sacraments for people who live in ‘irregular’ situations?”, continued the cardinal. “Pope Francis reiterates the need to discern carefully the situation in keeping with St. John Paul II’s Familiaris consortio. ‘Discernment must help to find possible ways of responding to God and growing in the midst of limits. By thinking that everything is black and white, we sometimes close off the way of grace and of growth, and discourage paths of sanctification which give glory to God’. … In the sense of this ‘via caritatis’, the Pope affirms, in a humble and simple manner, in a note that the help of the sacraments may also be given in ‘certain cases’. But for this purpose he does not offer us case studies or recipes, but instead simply reminds us of two of his famous phrases: ‘I want to remind priests that the confessional should not be a torture chamber but rather an encounter with the Lord’s mercy’ and the Eucharist ‘is not a prize for the perfect but a powerful medicine and nourishment for the weak'”.Presentation of the post-Synodal apostolic exhortation Amoris Laetitia: the logic of pastoral mercy, 08.04.2016(My emphasis)

  12. Most Catholics will buy into The New Catholic Order (heaven for everyone)) big time. Let your conscience be your guide, always be forgiving and merciful, who am I to judge, etc. Catholic parents will feel good that their divorced and remarried, contracepting kids will be saved, divorced and remarried will celebrate, cohabiting couples will walk proudly, etc. Let sinners rejoice: sin and be saved. Now who could have a problem with this?

    It is definitely time for divine intervention.

  13. “Bless me Father for I have fallen short of an ideal.”
    I am sooo looking forward to my next confession!

  14. Mt favorite priest has always taught (To the yawns of our liberal “catholics”,) that Satan has two prime targets the Eucharist and by extension, the priesthood.
    It’s is essential now, to gird our loins and not despair. Why give the diabolical the victory?

  15. ““Bless me Father for I have fallen short of an ideal.”
    I am sooo looking forward to my next confession!”

    Correct! The “reasoning” of the Exhortation can be applied to any sin that people can think of excuses in order to continue to commit, and people are ever resourceful in making up excuses for their own bad behavior. The Pope has transformed, “Go and sin no more” to “Go and do as your please”. Christian heresy almost always begins with an exaggerated focus on one facet of the teaching of Christ. The cry of Pope Francis for Mercy Uber Alles, at least when it comes to sexual sins, is a classic technique of Heresiarchs down through the ages.

  16. Or now “Be perfect as your Father in Heaven is perfect” to “Be perfect as you Father in Heaven is perfect unless you fall short of the ideal, in your conscience there’s no way you’re ever going to be and find a priest who agrees with you.”

  17. Should read “…in your conscience you decide there’s no way you’re ever going to be…”

    Today’s Gospel reading for the Saturday of the Second Week of Easter:

    “When it was evening, the disciples of Jesus went down to the sea,
    embarked in a boat, and went across the sea to Capernaum.
    It had already grown dark, and Jesus had not yet come to them.
    The sea was stirred up because a strong wind was blowing.
    When they had rowed about three or four miles,
    they saw Jesus walking on the sea and coming near the boat,
    and they began to be afraid.
    But he said to them, “It is I. Do not be afraid.”
    They wanted to take him into the boat,
    but the boat immediately arrived at the shore
    to which they were heading.”

    There is a storm in our Church but Christ is here with us.

  18. And from the Navarre Commentary on today’s Gospel:

    “16-21. It seems the disciples were disconcerted because darkness had fallen,
    the sea was getting rough and Jesus had still not appeared. But our Lord does
    not abandon them; when they had been rowing for some five kilometers (three
    miles), He arrives unexpectedly, walking on the water—to strengthen their faith,
    which was still weak.

    In meditating on this episode Christian tradition has seen the boat as symbolizing
    the Church, which will have to cope with many difficulties and which our Lord has
    promised to help all through the centuries (cf. Matthew 28:20); the Church, there-
    fore, will always remain firm. St. Thomas Aquinas comments: ‘The wind symboli-
    zes the temptations and persecution the Church will suffer due to lack of love. For,
    as St. Augustine says, when love grows cold, the sea become rougher and the
    boat begins to founder. Yet the wind, the storm, the waves and the darkness will
    fail to put it off course and wreck it’ (Commentary on St. John, in loc.).”

    There has been a great lack of love in the Church in the past 50 years. Let’s increase our love for it and our Holy Father with prayer, sacrifice and words of correction and truth.

  19. Phillip. The devil is in that boat, too. Perhaps he has always been. But today it appears the Church is now agreeing with him on certain matters. I think this is a sign of the end times or a confirmation of some of Our Lady’s predictions.

  20. The joke is most of the people in these kinds of arrangements never go to confession, most don’t go to Mass. I’ll watch the confessional line to see if it’s longer this week.

    Does all this internal forum b.s. only apply to sexual sins? I’ve never heard it argued for anything other.

  21. 2nd Timothy 4:3; “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.”

    Is this not the time, or one of them?

    The testing is continual.

    As mentioned from above by Phillip, pray.
    Good advice.

  22. Warning: sarcasm below
    .
    If adultery is now not sin, then why go to confession?
    .
    If what Jesus said in Matthew 19 is overturned, then why bother to receive His body and blood for He is a fallible man like the rest of us and surely not God’s son.

  23. Ken, the confessional line will certainly be longer this week as confession is one essential element in receiving the benefits of the Divine Mercy Sunday Indulgences.

  24. There will be more divorce because some will hear from the pulpit of a second chance at matrimony without loss of the Eucharist. It does not bode well for the children.
    So what’s the name for this new heresy?

  25. CAM, the new heresy might well be planned “ambiguity” which Pius VI condemned in a papal bull (AUCTOREM FIDEI) as a technique used to approve of error without saying so.

  26. >Footnote 351:

    >In certain cases, this can include the help of the sacraments. Hence, “I want to remind priests that the confessional must not be a torture chamber, but rather an encounter with the Lord’s mercy” (Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium [24 November 2013], 44: AAS 105 [2013], 1038). I would also point out that the Eucharist “is not a prize for the perfect, but a powerful medicine and nourishment for the weak” (ibid., 47: 1039).

    >Thus the Pope negates the clear teaching of Christ. I once asserted that the current Pontiff was the worst Pope since Alexander VI. I now must apologize to Alexander VI. With all his crimes he at least never proclaimed heresy.

    I say Bullpuckie.

    There is nothing in here that clearly says absolution is to be given to those who have no real purpose of amending their lives and that communion should be given to those in moral sin. You have to assume this nonsense and read it into the text.

    When Paul VI changed the liturgy he clearly revoked the disciplines of Pius V ( & St John Paul and Benedict clearly rolled that back a bit). Francis has not clearly revoked John Paul II discipline not to give communion to those in invalid second civil marriages. Thus the faithful Catholic cannot take your novel heterodox interpretation of this text seriously and morally he is bound to reject it,. Which I by the Grace of God do.

    PS You need to call this website American Protestant. It is clearly misnamed.

  27. One more thing. I know that my previous post will not see the light of day since anti-Catholic Francis bashing extremists need their safe spaces in which they may slander and hurl invective against the Pope with impunity and no accountability. Free from all criticism and counter point.

    It is not unlike how the early Protestants called for casting off the shackles and oppression of Rome then turning around and oppressing and censoring those who take issue with their criticisms of received doctrine. The hypocrisy was astounding as it is here today.

  28. “There is nothing in here that clearly says absolution is to be given to those who have no real purpose of amending their lives and that communion should be given to those in moral sin. You have to assume this nonsense and read it into the text.”

    The footnote is meaningless unless the Eucharist is being given to Catholics in adulterous marriages.

    “PS You need to call this website American Protestant. It is clearly misnamed.”

    Our title is accurate. Catholicism has never been about blindly accepting any idiocy written or uttered by a Pope:

    “Peter has no need of our lies or flattery. Those who blindly and indiscriminately defend every decision of the Supreme Pontiff are the very ones who do most to undermine the authority of the Holy See—they destroy instead of strengthening its foundations.”

    Bishop Melchior Cano

  29. “One more thing. I know that my previous post will not see the light of day since anti-Catholic Francis bashing extremists need their safe spaces in which they may slander and hurl invective against the Pope with impunity and no accountability. Free from all criticism and counter point.”

    You really are bone ignorant about TAC. Robust debate has been one of our hallmarks since our founding in 2008.

  30. To JIM SCOTT:
    My wife, a long-standing unrepentent adulteress was given absolution and encouraged to receive the Eucharist at our son’s wedding with the knowledge of Bishop Burbidge of Raleigh, North Carolina, AFTER I had written for him to intervene on behalf of our valid, sacramental marriage.

    You have no idea what you are speaking about nor how corrupted the Catholic Church is from top to bottom. This blasphemous, sacrilege is everywhere pastorally and overwhelms the annulment process.

  31. Ken-Spot on! This heresy can apply to ANY sin! Perhaps that is why -for now – Bergoglio isn’t out there and explicit re: voluntary anal sex. Of course his heresy covers all sins-except perhaps the sin of orthodoxy. “Bless me father for I have sinned. I have had 4 abortions in the last 5 years; I have always continued to go to Communion; I am now pregnant and plan to abort this child I am carrying next week. I am not perfect. I am hoping the Eucharist, which I plan to receive tomorrow, will be some powerful medicine to help me through this.” “My loving child. Your penance is to give thanks for God’s mercy and to pray a “Glory Be” for your Pope. And please consider naming the child you carry “Jorge Mario Francisco.'” Guy McClung, San Antonio, Texas

  32. Thanks Guy. This pope has been very hard on the mafia. He has never taken into account, with pastoral sensitivity, that some of these individuals have extenuating circumstances that propel them into lives of crime? After several long discussions with his confessor it was determined Vito could continue breaking legs for a living. It was learned Vito had no other skills worthy of gainful employment and, well, you have to feed the family.

  33. “Thanks Guy. This pope has been very hard on the mafia. He has never taken into account, with pastoral sensitivity, that some of these individuals have extenuating circumstances that propel them into lives of crime? After several long discussions with his confessor it was determined Vito could continue breaking legs for a living. It was learned Vito had no other skills worthy of gainful employment and, well, you have to feed the family.”

    Comment of the week Ken! Take ‘er away Sam!

  34. Father Longenecker has a post on Amoris Laetitia over at his blog, Standing on My Head:
    .
    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/standingonmyhead/2016/04/the-popes-exhortation-a-parish-priests-perspective.html
    .
    He takes a very positive view of the Apostolic Exhortation and uses three different fictitious examples to summon in our hearts sympathy for those in irregular marital relationships. In one of his paragraphs, Father Longenecker writes:
    .
    “It was Jesus who knelt in the dust with the woman taken in adultery. It was the scribes and Pharisees who stood at a distance accusing her of breaking the law. His response to them and his response to her, it seems to me, is exactly what Amoris Laetitia is all about.”
    .
    I disagree with Father Longenecker because he omitted the very last thing which Jesus said to the woman caught in adultery:
    .
    “Neither do I condemn thee. Go and sin no more.”
    .
    The adulteress was commanded to stop committing adultery and that is the whole point which both Father Longenecker and Pope Francis miss.
    .
    Yes, there are sad and irregular relationships, but that is no reason to change either the doctrine of the faith (which is what Francis claims is not being changed) nor the practice of the faith. But read Father Longenecker’s stories of Bob, Lucy and Malcolm for yourself, and you decide what you would do.

  35. None of those cases would be easy, but they should be dealt with HEAD ON. Just as the abandoners should be dealt with HEAD ON!

    The Catholic Church, long ago, abandoned the abandoned. IT is miraculous that I am still Catholic and some of that is due to our children, who have WATCHED THEIR FATHER’S CHOICES, BY CALLING HIM BACK BECAUSE I CALLED THEM BACK FIRST.

    I am disgusted with this heretic Pope. I wish I could tell him off to his face. He and all like him are part of all marital infidelity. He is an adulterer for forgiving without accountability. He is a LIVING SCANDAL TO ME.
    He is a Rapist, for not holding to tough account those who claim nullity due to SIMULATION, as my wife did.

    I am sick of the damn sob stories. I have my own sob story. What I want is for this HERETIC TO RESIGN OR BE FORCED OUT AND FOR A MAN TO REPLACE HIM WHO GIVES A DAMN ABOUT HEALING BROKEN MARRIAGES, RATHER THAN GREASING THE ANNULMENT MILLS.

    Go ahead Don, remove this post if you want. It is your blog and I respect you. But what is going on is so clearly wrong and so clearly indefensible and so clearly damaging to marriage and so clearly insulting to my fidelity that I do not want to put up with this idiot in PETER”S SEE!

  36. When Jesus referred to “the hardness of their hearts”, I guess the Lord of the Universe didn’t really know what he was talking about. Thank God we have Pope Francis who finally deviated from the unmerciful path the Church has been on for the last 2000 years. As many have noted, though, his mercy only extends to certain favored groups. I don’t think the Church can take much more of the Francis effect.

  37. Karl, you are right.
    For Fr. Longnecker:

    Case !: I know several women who have had to divorce their husbands because of the danger of violence. In their cases the marriages could not be declared null. Yet all have remained divorced and have avoided all relations with men so that they can receive the sacraments.

    Case 2: I know of one couple at my parish who are engaged in a non-sacramental marriage. They cannot obtain a decree of nullity, yet they are at Mass every Sunday, but don’t receive. I often see them at weekday Mass as well.

    Case 3: My non-Catholic grandfather, after the death of his wife, married a divorced Catholic women (husband drunk in another country). They married so she could receive his SocSec benefits when he died, as well as survivor benefits on his pension. They never engaged in the marital act so she could receive at Mass.

  38. Father of Seven; “I don’t think the church can take much more of the Francis effect.”
    We need to be careful not to despair, then the diabolical has a victory, Satan’s real goal.
    We might best just gird our loins, enter (or continue until our last breath) the fray and recall St, Augustine’s thoughts about such times.

    “When we hear heretical voices about us…when we see that the sanctity of marriage and the priesthood are attacked without fear of rebuke, have confidence, for the Holy Church is incorruptible.”
    St. Augustine

  39. It seems to me that there is a significant number of practicing Catholics who, if it were possible for a pope to just blatantly give blanket permission for divorced and remarried people to receive Holy Communion, would agree with it and attack any Catholics who would oppose such a thing.

  40. HAHAHA!!!

    I’ve been saying the same thing about ole’ Rod Borgia for a couple years now!

    Bravo, MClarey.

    Clarity is demanded by the CCC 1697 and in this at least we have clarity…heretical clarity, but clarity nonetheless!

  41. No one is saying the confessional is a torture chamber (after all, Pope Sheavus I dogmatically defined tortutre to be intrinsically evil). Nor is anyone saying that the Eucharist is a “prize for the perfect”. Pope Francis has the habit of lining up straw men before a firing squad and mowing them down. And I thought he was opposed to the death penalty.

  42. You don’t even need to confess that you have fallen ‘short of an ideal’ but only just peek in the door—the pope said that shows you are seeking forgiveness!!!

    And if you are living in a state of adultery (mortal sin) but have ‘seeds of goodness’ in your affair, well I guess that must be okay too now.

    Except that God is still offended and the sins are still mortal. Who is caring about the salvation of souls these days? Truth does NOT change. Our Lord said that if you love Him, you will keep His commands. And if you do not love Him nor keep the commandments and continue on in mortal sin–no matter who says its okay–there may be hell to pay Literally.

  43. “We’re here to worship, not stand in line for Communion.”
    .
    So said my parish pastor in the middle of his homily this Sunday.
    .
    I can’t imagine why.

  44. The title says, the devil is in the footnotes. This sounds funny, but 351 is the reverse of 153, which is the number of fish caught in an account in the Gospels, and the number of Hail Marys in the Rosary. This is not my discovery, just this on Youtube.

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