PopeWatch: Image

Friday, February 24, AD 2017

 

An interesting communique from the Vatican:

 

The Secretariat of State includes among its responsibilities the protection of the image of the Holy Father, so that his message may reach the faithful intact, and so that his person is not exploited.

For the same reasons, the Secretariat of State safeguards all symbols and official coats of arms of the Holy See via the appropriate regulatory instruments at international level.

To render this protection increasingly effective for the aforementioned purposes and to stop any illegal situations that may arise, the Secretariat of State carries out systematic surveillance activities to monitor the ways in which the image of the Holy Father and the coats of arms of the Holy See are used, taking appropriate action where necessary.

 

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PopeWatch: Jesuits

Thursday, February 23, AD 2017

 

PopeWatch has long thought that much that afflicts the Church can be summed up in one word:  Jesuits.  Sandro Magister gives us a case in point:

 

Incredible but true. In the eighth chapter of “Amoris Laetitia,” the most heated and controversial, the one in which Pope Francis seems to “open up” to remarriage while the previous spouse is still alive, there is no citation at all of the words of Jesus on marriage and divorce, presented primarily in chapter 19 of the Gospel according to Matthew:

«Pharisees came up to him and tested him by asking, “Is it lawful to divorce one’s wife for any cause?” He answered, “Have you not read that he who made them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one’? So they are no longer two but one. What therefore God has joined together, let not man put asunder.” They said to him, “Why then did Moses command one to give a certificate of divorce, and to put her away?” He said to them, “For your hardness of heart Moses allowed you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so. And I say to you: whoever divorces his wife, except for unchastity, and marries another, commits adultery; and he who marries a divorced woman, commits adultery.”»

It is an astonishing omission. Also striking are two other moments of silence from Francis, on the same question.

The first took place on October 4, 2015. It was the Sunday of the beginning of the second and final session of the synod on the family. And on that very day, in all the Catholic churches of the Latin rite, at Mass, the Gospel passage read was from Mark (10:2-9), parallel to the one in Matthew 19:2-12.

At the Angelus, the pope avoided any reference to that passage of the Gospel, in spite of its extraordinary pertinence to the questions discussed at the synod.

And the same thing happened last February 12, with another similar passage from the Gospel of Matthew (5:11-12) read at Mass in all the churches. This time as well, at the Angelus, Francis avoided citing and commenting on it.

Why such adamant silence from the pope on words of Jesus that are so unequivocal?

One clue toward a response is in the interview that the new superior general of the Society of Jesus, the Venezuelan Arturo Sosa Abascal, very close to Jorge Mario Bergoglio, has given to the Swiss vaticanista Giuseppe Rusconi for the blog Rossoporpora and for the “Giornale del Popolo” of Lugano.

Here are the passages most relevant to the case. Any commentary would be superfluous.

*

Q: Cardinal Gerhard L. Műller, prefect of the congregation for the doctrine of the faith, has said with regard to marriage that the words of Jesus are very clear and “no power in heaven and on earth, neither an angel nor the pope, neither a council nor a law of the bishops has the faculty to modify them.”

A: So then, there would have to be a lot of reflection on what Jesus really said. At that time, no one had a recorder to take down his words. What is known is that the words of Jesus must be contextualized, they are expressed in a language, in a specific setting, they are addressed to someone in particular.

Q: But if all the worlds of Jesus must be examined and brought back to their historical context, they do not have an absolute value.

A: Over the last century in the Church there has been a great blossoming of studies that seek to understand exactly what Jesus meant to say… That is not relativism, but attests that the word is relative, the Gospel is written by human beings, it is accepted by the Church which is made up of human persons… So it is true that no one can change the word of Jesus, but one must know what it was!

Q: Is it also possible to question the statement in Matthew 19:3-6: “What therefore God has joined together, let not man put asunder”?

A: I go along with what Pope Francis says. One does not bring into doubt, one brings into discernment. . .

Q: But discernment is evaluation, it is choosing among different options. There is no longer an obligation to follow just one interpretation. . .

A: No, the obligation is still there, but to follow the result of discernment.

Q: However, the final decision is based on a judgment relative to different hypotheses. So it also takes into consideration the hypothesis that the phrase “let man not put asunder…” is not exactly as it appears. In short, it brings the word of Jesus into doubt.

A: Not the word of Jesus, but the word of Jesus as we have interpreted it. Discernment does not select among different hypotheses but listens to the Holy Spirit, who – as Jesus has promised – helps us to understand the signs of God’s presence in human history.

Q: But discern how?

A: Pope Francis does discernment following St. Ignatius, like the whole Society of Jesus: one has to seek and find, St. Ignatius said, the will of God. It is not a frivolous search. Discernment leads to a decision: one must not only evaluate, but decide.

Q: And who must decide?

A: The Church has always reiterated the priority of personal conscience.

Q: So if conscience, after discernment, tells me that I can receive communion even if the norm does not provide for it…

A: The Church has developed over the centuries, it is not a piece of reinforced concrete. It was born, it has learned, it has changed. This is why the ecumenical councils are held, to try to bring developments of doctrine into focus. Doctrine is a word that I don’t like very much, it brings with it the image of the hardness of stone. Instead the human reality is much more nuanced, it is never black or white, it is in continual development.

Q: I seem to understand that for you there is a priority for the practice of the discernment of doctrine.

A: Yes, but doctrine is part of discernment. True discernment cannot dispense with doctrine.

Q: But it can reach conclusions different from doctrine.

A: That is so, because doctrine does not replace discernment, nor does it the Holy Spirit.

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15 Responses to PopeWatch: Jesuits

  • Sophistry and rationalization. Pure unadulterated male bovine manure.

  • Incredible.

    While reading Abascal’s answers I can’t help but recall these words; “Let your speach be yea yea; or no no, and that which is over and above these is evil.” Matthew 5:37 – Douay-Rheams version.

    This is not good. ( A. Yes, but doctrine is part of discernment. True discernment cannot dispense with doctrine.)

    Maybe it’s me. I read double speak here. It’s as if Hillary Clinton is giving the answers.

  • Fr Abascal’s replies suggest that he is unfamiliar with the literature on the subject, which is really the hoary Biblical Question.

    Much of the argument over the Biblical Question, when the development of biblical criticism at last forced Catholics to confront the development of dogma and the historical nature of consciousness and dogmatic expression was thrashed out threadbare over a century ago.

    It is voluminously documented in the writings of Maurice Blondel (Histoire et dogme 1904), Alfred Loisy (L’Evangile et l’église 1902), Lucien Laberthonnière (Positivisme et catholicisme 1911) and Edouard Le Roy (Dogme et critique) and the correspondence between them (they were indefatigable letter-writers) and in the columns of periodicals such as La quinzaine and Annales de philosophie chrétienne.

    It is difficult today to appreciate the separation, up until then, of theology from history as a factor for understanding this conflict; it resulted in a lack of historical consciousness which at its extremes, and even among theologians, approached a mythic mentality. It drove men like Mgr Duchesne and Loisy to the opposite extreme of a ruthless historicism, leaving to theologians the task of reconciling doctrines with facts.

    In his letter of 18 August 1898 to Baron von Hügel, Blondel seemed to recognize the complementarity of his method of immanence with historical study. “The success which is so necessary and—with time—so certain of your biblical criticism seems to me intimately bound to the progress of the apologetic method of immanence, which alone, it seems to me, includes the freedom of evolution and the fixity of orientation in the life of humanity.”

    In his opposition to Loisy, Blondel insists on searching for the “real history” beneath its historical and written record. His philosophy of action allows him to see “tradition,” grounded in the actual lives of Christians, as the continuous link in the development of dogma. And, inversely, this living tradition of the life of faith reaching to the present allows the Christian historian, in faith, to recognize the integral supernatural reality of the originating events of Christianity.

    What they all shared, in opposition to Protetant Biblical scholars was the belief that the “Church is the continuation of the gospel; Christian development is not exterior to or alien to the gospel.” (Loisy to Blondel, 11 February 1903).

  • “That is so, because doctrine does not replace discernment, nor does it the Holy Spirit. ”

    Oh good. My discernment (and of course counsel of the Spirit) is that I can shack up with that hot neighbor of mine, not pay my taxes, give depressed wages to my employees and generally hate anyone who is not like me.

    Its about time I say.

  • Comment of the week Phillip! Take ‘er away Sam!

  • As I said recently to RCIA students, “Pope Francis, is a Jesuit. Jesuits play loose with the liturgy, and the Magisterium can be most annoying to them”. And I am a graduate of Gonzaga University.

  • I feel your pain, Jerry: 12 years of Jesuit education myself including BA St Louis U (’79) and MA Santa Clara U (’85), but there were still Jesuits with a reasoning brain in their head and a deeply spiritual life formed on Christ in the Gospels (Did the Sp. Exercises of S.I ever talk about “interpreting” the Scriptures? Yeah, yeah, “discernment”, but that was discerning if one was following the Standard of Christ or the Standard of the Devil (#136-147)—a lost cause for Jesuits who entered after 1970, it appears).


    In conclusion, I feel your pain.

  • I think Giuseppe Rusconi clearly had Abascal on the ropes by his relentless serious of logical questions.

    I diagramed the discussion Abascal’s side of the argument, a series of retreats before Rusconi’s unrelenting advances, like this:
    • Abascal: premise: “historical context” of Scriptures (SS)
    • Abascal: Ok then: “discernment” of SS real meaning
    • Abascal: Ok then: SS need to be “interpreted”
    • Abascal: Ok then: Personal conscience has priority over SS
    • Abascal: OK then: SS’ Doctrine has always changed
    • Abascal: OK then: Discernment is higher than Doctrine.

    In the end, Abascal gave it up when he averred:
    ” ..Reality is much more nuanced, it is never black or white, it is in continual development.”

    Just cant make out anything here, for all the grey fog lying about. I guess Philip is right about the “hot neighbor” option.

  • Then, I guess S. Dominic was all wrong when he chose black and white as the symbols of his order, because he asserted that by reasoning, one could successively distinguish good from evil until it eventually became as clear as black from white.

  • A valid Sacrament of Matrimony cannot be rationalized away, because Jesus Christ is the witness. Pope Francis is the Vicar of Christ. If Pope Francis rationalizes Jesus Christ’s witness away, Pope Francis will cease to be the Vicar of Christ.

  • This is a serious question: In what way is this not moral relativism?

    Perhaps I misunderstand the concept or what is being said.

    It sounds to me like Abascal is saying “there is an objective Truth for each of us and it is up to us to discern that Truth for ourselves. If we do so, with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we are objectively in the right.”

    If that is correct, then the Roman Catholic Church is wrong and our sola scriptura Christian brethren are right: “read the Bible. Pray on it. God will tell you what to do.”

    What am I missing?

  • I am glad that Phillip made the comment. Had I, a woman, made the comment I would be drinking water with ashes in it and running around the temple three times to prove it was only humor. Gosh, I am tired and still running.
    I recently watch QUO VADIS by Henryk Sienkiewicz. In the film, Marcus seizes the cross from the wall, breaks the cross and throws the cross on the floor, saying: “I will not share my wife with anyone.” Some men cannot share. Some men become abusive because they need another person to stroke their inferiority complex.
    Keep up the good work. Gosh, I’m still running.
    If one of the spouses refuses to consent to an annulment, the marriage stays intact. So, how can one spouse in the Sacrament of Penance seek and procure an annulment without the consent of the absent party to the marriage? If we look at the issue from heaven we see that God is not giving consent to annul valid marriage through the Sacrament of Penance. If the person persists in his studborn refusal to accept the Word of God on his marriage, he may go to hell and still be married.

  • Fr. Abascal’s words are so convoluted! He says it is not reletavism, then in the same sentence says it is relative. Sheish!! This guy is so confused, and wants to spread his confusion. The words of Jesus are very clear! But, one must have eyes to see and ears to hear. This guys eyes and ears are blind and deaf!

    When I converted to become Catholic, I had the experience of seeing and hearing differently. I had read the book of John Ch 6 twice ( at least, maybe more) and never understood that Jesus was talking about the Eucharist. Then during my conversion, the next time I read it, it was SO obvious Jesus was talking about the Eucharist, I couldn’t read it any other way.

    Fr. Abascal seems obsessed with the Holy Spirit and discernment, but I think he is lacking the Holy Spirit to help him understand the obvious words of Jesus. His eyes and ears are blocked to the truth of Jesus.

    We have priests teaching against the obvious words of Jesus Christ. God help us!! Mother Mary, help us!

  • Clara: I must add to your wonderful comment. To receive Jesus in the Holy Eucharist unworthily is condemnation. Isn’t there enough condemnation in the world?

  • The Jesuits that traveled the Great Lakes were my favorite Saints. But my opinion of Jesuits today was formed by Malachi Martin.

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PopeWatch: And Stay off my Lawn!

Wednesday, February 22, AD 2017

 

 

It will be interesting to see how the younger fans of the Pope react to this:

 

Pope Francis wants youngsters to BRB from their cellphones at the dinner table, warning that the lack of face-to-face communication with adults could result in “war.”

“When we’re at the table, when we are speaking to others on our telephones, it’s the start of war because there is no dialogue,” the 80-year-old pontiff told students last week at Roma Tre in Rome.

The pope also chided today’s youths for their lack of manners, saying that instead of a friendly “good morning,” they opt for an “anonymous ‘ciao, ciao.’”

“We need to lower the tone a bit, speak less and listen more,” he said.

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PopeWatch: Pontiff as Party Leader

Tuesday, February 21, AD 2017

 

 

The Pope in a letter has given a  gathering of leftist groups in California their marching orders:

 

The following is the message sent by Pope Francis to the participants in the Meeting of Popular Movements taking place in Modesto, California, United States of America, from 16 to 19 February.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

First of all, I would like to congratulate you for your effort in replicating on a national level the work being developed in the World Meetings of Popular Movements. By way of this letter, I want to encourage and strengthen each one of you, your organisations, and all who strive with you for “Land, Work and Housing,” the three T’s in Spanish: Tierra, Trabajo y Techo. I congratulate you for all that you are doing.

I would like to thank the Catholic Campaign for Human Development, its chairman Bishop David Talley, and the host Bishops Stephen Blaire, Armando Ochoa and Jaime Soto, for the wholehearted support they have offered to this meeting. Thank you, Cardinal Peter Turkson, for your continued support of popular movements from the new Dicastery for the Promotion of Integral Human Development. It makes me very happy to see you working together towards social justice! How I wish that such constructive energy would spread to all dioceses, because it builds bridges between peoples and individuals. These are bridges that can overcome the walls of exclusion, indifference, racism, and intolerance.

I would also like to highlight the work done by the PICO National Network and the organizations promoting this meeting. I learned that PICO stands for “People Improving Communities through Organising”. What a great synthesis of the mission of popular movements: to work locally, side by side with your neighbours, organising among yourselves, to make your communities thrive.

A few months ago in Rome, we talked at the third World Meeting of Popular Movements about walls and fear, about bridges and love.[1] Without wanting to repeat myself, these issues do challenge our deepest values.

We know that none of these ills began yesterday. For some time, the crisis of the prevailing paradigm has confronted us. I am speaking of a system that causes enormous suffering to the human family, simultaneously assaulting people’s dignity and our Common Home in order to sustain the invisible tyranny of money that only guarantees the privileges of a few. “In our time humanity is experiencing a turning-point in its history.”[2]

As Christians and all people of good will, it is for us to live and act at this moment. It is “a grave responsibility, since certain present realities, unless effectively dealt with, are capable of setting off processes of dehumanisation which would then be hard to reverse.”[3] These are signs of the times that we need to recognise in order to act. We have lost valuable time: time when we did not pay enough attention to these processes, time when we did not resolve these destructive realities. Thus the processes of dehumanisation accelerate. The direction taken beyond this historic turning-point—the ways in which this worsening crisis gets resolved—will depend on people’s involvement and participation and, largely, on yourselves, the popular movements.

We should be neither paralysed by fear nor shackled within the conflict. We have to acknowledge the danger but also the opportunity that every crisis brings in order to advance to a successful synthesis. In the Chinese language, which expresses the ancestral wisdom of that great people, the word “crisis” is comprised of two ideograms: Wēi, which represents “danger”, and Jī, which represents “opportunity”.

The grave danger is to disown our neighbours. When we do so, we deny their humanity and our own humanity without realising it; we deny ourselves, and we deny the most important Commandments of Jesus. Herein lies the danger, dehumanisation. But here we also find an opportunity: that the light of the love of neighbour may illuminate the Earth with its stunning brightness like a lightning bolt in the dark; that it may wake us up and let true humanity burst through with authentic resistance, resilience and persistence.

The question that the lawyer asked Jesus in the Gospel of Luke (10:25-37) echoes in our ears today: “Who is my neighbour?” Who is that other whom we are to love as we love ourselves? Maybe the questioner expects a comfortable response in order to carry on with his life: “My relatives? My compatriots? My co-religionists? …” Maybe he wants Jesus to excuse us from the obligation of loving pagans or foreigners who at that time were considered unclean. This man wants a clear rule that allows him to classify others as “neighbour” and “non-neighbour”, as those who can become neighbours and those who cannot become neighbours.[4]

Jesus responds with a parable which features two figures belonging to the elite of the day and a third figure, considered a foreigner, a pagan and unclean: the Samaritan. On the road from Jerusalem to Jericho, the priest and the Levite come upon a dying man, whom robbers have attacked, stripped and abandoned. In such situations the Law of the Lord imposes the duty to offer assistance, but both pass by without stopping. They were in a hurry. However, unlike these elite figures, the Samaritan stopped. Why him? As a Samaritan he was looked down upon, no one would have counted on him, and in any case he would have had his own commitments and things to do—yet when he saw the injured man, he did not pass by like the other two who were linked to the Temple, but “he saw him and had compassion on him” (v. 33). The Samaritan acts with true mercy: he binds up the man’s wounds, transports him to an inn, personally takes care of him, and provides for his upkeep. All this teaches us that compassion, love, is not a vague sentiment, but rather means taking care of the other to the point of personally paying for him. It means committing oneself to take all the necessary steps so as to “draw near to” the other to the point of identifying with him: “You shall love your neighbour as yourself.” This is the Lord’s Commandment.[5]

The economic system that has the god of money at its centre, and that sometimes acts with the brutality of the robbers in the parable, inflicts injuries that to a criminal degree have remained neglected. Globalised society frequently looks the other way with the pretence of innocence. Under the guise of what is politically correct or ideologically fashionable, one looks at those who suffer without touching them. But they are televised live; they are talked about in euphemisms and with apparent tolerance, but nothing is done systematically to heal the social wounds or to confront the structures that leave so many brothers and sisters by the wayside. This hypocritical attitude, so different from that of the Samaritan, manifests an absence of true commitment to humanity.

Sooner or later, the moral blindness of this indifference comes to light, like when a mirage dissipates. The wounds are there, they are a reality. The unemployment is real, the violence is real, the corruption is real, the identity crisis is real, the gutting of democracies is real. The system’s gangrene cannot be whitewashed forever because sooner or later the stench becomes too strong; and when it can no longer be denied, the same power that spawned this state of affairs sets about manipulating fear, insecurity, quarrels, and even people’s justified indignation, in order to shift the responsibility for all these ills onto a “non-neighbour”. I am not speaking of anyone in particular, I am speaking of a social and political process that flourishes in many parts of the world and poses a grave danger for humanity.

Jesus teaches us a different path. Do not classify others in order to see who is a neighbour and who is not. You can become neighbour to whomever you meet in need, and you will do so if you have compassion in your heart. That is to say, if you have that capacity to suffer with someone else. You must become a Samaritan. And then also become like the innkeeper at the end of the parable to whom the Samaritan entrusts the person who is suffering. Who is this innkeeper? It is the Church, the Christian community, people of compassion and solidarity, social organisations. It is us, it is you, to whom the Lord Jesus daily entrusts those who are afflicted in body and spirit, so that we can continue pouring out all of his immeasurable mercy and salvation upon them. Here are the roots of the authentic humanity that resists the dehumanisation that wears the livery of indifference, hypocrisy, or intolerance.

I know that you have committed yourselves to fight for social justice, to defend our Sister Mother Earth and to stand alongside migrants. I want to reaffirm your choice and share two reflections in this regard.

First, the ecological crisis is real. “A very solid scientific consensus indicates that we are presently witnessing a disturbing warming of the climatic system.”[6] Science is not the only form of knowledge, it is true. It is also true that science is not necessarily “neutral”—many times it conceals ideological views or economic interests. However, we also know what happens when we deny science and disregard the voice of Nature. I make my own everything that concerns us as Catholics. Let us not fall into denial. Time is running out. Let us act. I ask you again—all of you, people of all backgrounds including native people, pastors, political leaders—to defend Creation.

The other is a reflection that I shared at our most recent World Meeting of Popular Movements, and I feel is important to say it again: no people is criminal and no religion is terrorist. Christian terrorism does not exist, Jewish terrorism does not exist, and Muslim terrorism does not exist. They do not exist. No people is criminal or drug-trafficking or violent. “The poor and the poorer peoples are accused of violence yet, without equal opportunities, the different forms of aggression and conflict will find a fertile terrain for growth and will eventually explode.”[7] There are fundamentalist and violent individuals in all peoples and religions—and with intolerant generalisations they become stronger because they feed on hate and xenophobia. By confronting terror with love, we work for peace.

I ask you for meekness and resolve to defend these principles. I ask you not to barter them lightly or apply them superficially. Like St. Francis of Assisi, let us give everything of ourselves: where there is hatred, let us sow love; where there is injury, let us sow pardon; where there is discord, let us sow unity; where there is error, let us sow truth.[8]

Please know that I pray for you, that I pray with you, and I ask God our Father to accompany and bless you. May He shower you with his love and protect you. I ask you to please pray for me too, and to carry on.

Vatican City, 10 February 2017

 

[1] Address to the 3rd World Meeting of Popular Movements, Paul VI Audience Hall, 5 November 2016. http://w2.vatican.va/content/francesco/en/speeches/2016/november/documents/papa-francesco_20161105_movimenti-popolari.html

[2] Evangelii Gaudium §52

[3] Ibid. §51

[4] Cf. General Audience, 27 April 2016. http://w2.vatican.va/content/francesco/en/audiences/2016/documents/papa-francesco_20160427_udienza-generale.html

[5] Ibid.

[6] Laudato Si’ §23

[7] Evangelii Gaudium §59

[8] Cf. St Francis of Assisi, Peace Prayer.

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15 Responses to PopeWatch: Pontiff as Party Leader

  • I’m wondering whether the following is a “rhetorical question.” “Is the Pope Catholic?”

    Subsidiarity Forever! We shall not be moved.

    I see two common stains in liberation and popular movements: envy and hatred. Both are sins against the most important Theological Virtue – Charity. It seems as if he “sleep walked” through this past Sunday’s Gospel.

  • I saw no reason to read past his thanks to the odious (c)atholic Campaign for Human
    Development.

  • T Shaw wrote, “I’m wondering whether the following is a “rhetorical question.” “Is the Pope Catholic?””

    As Wittgenstein points out, there is one thing of which one can say neither that it weighs one kilo, nor that it is does not weigh one kilo and that is le grand K in Paris. Both statements are meaningless.

  • the
    Campaign for Human Development gave us the community organizer, Obama, a Saul Alinskyite as president. As much as 30 percent supports abortion groups. If Pope Francis wants peace, he, Pope Francis, needs to stop provoking Satan.

  • I’m no philosopher. And, I spent the past weekend with the wrong crowd – a bunch of over-aged boy scouts.

    Great World Philosophers:

    “To be is to do.” Socrates

    “To do is to be.” Plato

    “Do be do be do.” Sinatra

    Great Catholic Popes
    St. Peter
    St. Gregory the Great
    Pope Francis – like Sinatra above, he doesn’t belong.

  • Pingback: The Half Time Period Of Alinskyite Popes Is Rather Short. | Mundabor's Blog
  • Perhaps he has a split personality. Or maybe just a hypocrite. That was Jesus’ word for Pharisees:

    http://www.catholicherald.co.uk/news/2017/02/22/be-ashamed-when-tempted-to-use-church-for-power-struggles-says-pope-francis/

  • Introspection and the Pope are clearly not on speaking terms.

  • This Pope has ‘Rules for Radicals’ down pat!

  • Reading the Pope’s words is simply too much like work and not worth the effort.

  • I think some forget this a tradition in the papacy, not that unique to Francis… In two encyclicals, Deus Caritas Est (God is Love) in 2005 and Caritas in Veritate (Charity in Truth) in 2009, Benedict reminded Catholics of the perils of indifference to modern human and ecological maladies. In Deus Caritas Est, Benedict details the church’s proper role in works of charity and in seeking social justice, expressing the interconnectedness of justice and charity as the complementary requirements of all people of faith. “Building a just social and civil order, wherein each person receives what is his or her due,” he writes, “is an essential task which every generation must take up anew.”

  • “Building a just social and civil order, wherein each person receives what is his or her due,” he writes, “is an essential task which every generation must take up anew.”

    And often killing tens of millions of people in the attempt, as the last century so graphically demonstrated. God save us from utopian economic and political schemes no matter the source. The Popes have a poor track record in these types of endeavors. They created the Holy Roman Empire and then spent most of the next thousand years fighting the Emperors of that amorphous entity.

  • The US and the Cupboard countries have given this bunch of leftist crap a gigantic NO! The Pontiff of Rome knows nothing except leftist drivel and being a bully. My five year old has more sense than this leftist drivel.

  • Stupid auto correct on this stupid phone. Visegard not Cupboard. Geez.

  • “Is the Pope Catholic?” The simple and obvious answer… NO, and… therefore it is impossible that he is Pope. Non-Catholics need not apply. (That goes for the previous 5 joker apostates as well). Pax Christi, pray for a Pope!

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PopeWatch: LarryD

Monday, February 20, AD 2017

 

LarryD at Acts of the Apostasy has given the benefit of every possible doubt to Pope Francis through this purgatory of a Pontificate.  PopeWatch was thus struck by this post:

 

I’ve read some reviews, synopses, and commentaries of Cardinal Francesco Coccopalmerio’s recently published booklet, “The Eighth Chapter of the Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia,” and I gotta tell you, I never knew Episcopalians had cardinals. I knew they had bishops, but not cardinals.

Here’s the pertinent pernicious paragraph:

“The divorced and remarried, de facto couples, those cohabiting, are certainly not models of unions in sync with Catholic Doctrine, but the Church cannot look the other way. Therefore, the sacraments of Reconciliation and of Communion must be given even to those so-called wounded families and to however many who, despite living in situations not in line with traditional matrimonial canons, express the sincere desire to approach the sacraments after an appropriate period of discernment… Yes, therefore, to admission to the sacraments for those who, despite living in irregular situations, sincerely ask for admission into the fullness of ecclesial life, it is a gesture of openness and profound mercy on the part of Mother Church, who does not leave behind any of her children, aware that absolute perfection is a precious gift, but one which cannot be reached by everyone.” 

In other words, R.I.P. heroic virtue. Take the wide road. Don’t rely on God’s power to sanctify you each day – through prayer, through courageously bearing one’s cross, through sacrifice, through baptismal graces, through reception of the graces one receives worshiping at Mass – because gosh darn it, God doesn’t want you to be unhappy. God doesn’t want you to feel left out because you haz sincere desires. You can even be a cohabiting couple – simply express a sincere desire to approach the sacraments, and the Church won’t look the other way.

Imagine parents treating their children this way, giving them what they wanted because they felt they deserved it, and didn’t want to feel left out.

Oh…wait. Bad example.

That excerpt is more appropriate for inspirational posters one sees hanging in corporate meeting rooms and business corridors. This is Holy Mother Church we’re talking about, though, not Google headquarters.

The Church, though, doesn’t demand absolute perfection. She helps us become perfected and ultimately reach heaven, not hand out the Eucharist like it’s a participation trophy. None of us deserve the Eucharist – it’s an incredible gift from Jesus Christ of himself. All of us must meet requirements to be worthy of reception – one of which is to be in a state of grace. Remember the parable of the marriage feast in Mt 22?

“And those servants went out into the streets and gathered all whom they found, both bad and good; so the wedding hall was filled with guests. But when the king came in to look at the guests, he saw there a man who has no wedding garment; and he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you get in here without a wedding a garment?’ And he was speechless. Then the king said to to the attendants, ‘Bind him hand and foot, and cast him into the outer darkness; there men will weep and gnash their teeth.’ For many are called, but few are chosen.”

This is serious business. What the cardinal is recommending, is that one can do evil in order to bring about a good. Since when, in all the history of the Catholic Church?

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12 Responses to PopeWatch: LarryD

  • Hebrews 13:8 “Jesus Christ, yesterday today, and the same forever. 9 Be not lead away with various and strange doctrines. For it is best that the heart be established with grace, not with meats; which has not profited those that walk in them.”

    The meats found in Amoris Laetitia are not fit for the sojourner who seeks his final destination. One who eats of this meat will find it difficult to journey on since his bowels will dictate his progress or lack there of.

  • Despair is the devil’s tool. Go ahead be as bad as you will, you cannot reach perfection. The Sacrament of Reconciliation may not be used to annul first marriages since two witnesses establish a judicial fact. There is only one testimony in the Sacrament of Penance. Penance, by the way, is for the penitent, not his ex-spouse. Undoing of the Sacrament of Reconciliation will help no one.

  • Sometimes extending the benefit of the doubt is not all that beneficial. This is a case in point.

  • A picture is worth a thousand words. The brief caption adds 10,000 words. I don’t take away “epciscopalian” cardinals. I say they are shallow thinkers cardinals. I am being charitable and nonjudgmental, here.

  • There is no question that the Church, under Pope Francis and those sychophants who cling to him, is in a de facto – not formal – schism. The SSPX is looking better all the time, and their canonical regularisation is only months away. I guess that is one good thing, at least, that we can thank Pope Francis for. Of course, their situation was perfectly regular in 1970, until in 1975 the jealous liberal bunch conned the CDF and Pope Paul into removing their canonical status under false pretences.

  • Thanks for the link, Donald.

  • Phillip.

    From “Disrupters” come the greatest bunch of pro-aborts the Catholic Church can muster…And from where? Chicago and San Diego. Great. At the very least I can feel comfortable knowing that the liberial Catholic Church is leading in the anarchy.

  • “Thanks for the link, Donald.”

    Thaks for writing a great post Larry!

  • Atta boy Larry D. better late than never.

  • This justification by the cardinal is provably false, because he says sacrament of Reconciliation. This requires from purpose of amendment, which those divorced remarried not living as brother and sister cannot offer.

  • ” after an appropriate period of discernment…” Saint Thomas More could have kept his head. Apparently he thought it better to enter the Kingdom of Heaven with his head under his arm than risk to going to Hell with it on his shoulders.

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PopeWatch: Chant Grammy

Saturday, February 18, AD 2017

 

 

From the only reliable source of Catholic news on the net, Eye of the Tiber:

 

 

Saint Gregory the Great was awarded the Grammy for Best Chant last night at the 59th annual Grammy Awards.

Accepting his award for ‘Salve’ the Roman artist paid tribute to Jesus Christ, whom he said he loved “like a father.”

“I can’t possibly accept this award,” a clearly emotional Gregory said in his acceptance speech. “I’m very humble and I’m grateful and gracious, but the music of my life is Corsican, and the ‘Miserere’ album was just so monumental…people of Corsica, it was so monumental.”

Gregory later went on to apologize for swearing during an earlier performance dedicated to Jesus, saying that “Christ meant so much to me that I could not give a poor performance.”

Gregory becomes the first pope to win a Grammy twice.

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PopeWatch: Burke to Guam

Friday, February 17, AD 2017

 

 

 

 

Just when you thought that things couldn’t get much weirder at the Vatican:

 

Cardinal Raymond Burke has traveled to Guam, to take testimony in the canonical trial of Archbishop Anthony Apuron of Agana.

Archbishop Apuron, who has been accused of molesting a number of young men, was relieved of his pastoral responsibilities in the Guam archdiocese last June. He has insisted on his innocence and refused to resign. However, in October the Vatican named an American prelate, Archbishop Michael Byrnes, as coadjutor with “special faculties” to take over leadership of the archdiocese.

At his installation, Archbishop Byrnes revealed that the Vatican had begun a canonical trial of Archbishop Apuron on the sex-abuse charges. The Vatican press office has now confirmed this, and disclosed that Cardinal Burke was named as the presiding judge in the case.

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4 Responses to PopeWatch: Burke to Guam

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PopeWatch: Taking It

Thursday, February 16, AD 2017

 

 

For a Pope who dishes out insults readily to those who have the temerity to differ from him, Pope Francis seems remarkably sensitive to insults aimed at him:

 

Pope Francis on Sunday criticised the everyday use of “insults”, an apparent reference to anonymous attacks he has faced over the last week in Rome.

In his weekly Angelus address, Francis highlighted Jesus’ commandment, “Thou shalt not kill,” saying the edict applied not only to actual homicide, “but also to those behaviours which offend the dignity of the human person, including insulting words.”

“Certainly, these injurious words do not have the same gravity and do not lead to the same verdict of guilt as homicide, but they are placed on the same level because they are the premise of more serious acts and reveal the same malevolence,” he said.

Francis may have been referring to criticism he has received this past week, as well as tensions over the manoeuvring of conservatives opposed to his reforms of Church teaching and governance.

“We are used to insults,” he said. “It is like saying, ‘Good morning’.”

But “who insults his brother kills that brother in his heart,” the pontiff added.

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8 Responses to PopeWatch: Taking It

  • Is it an insult to tell Jorge Bergoglio the truth?

  • Was it an insult when the leader of the Catholic Church quipped; “What’s a matter, are your hands stuck together?”
    An altar boy probably thought it an insult coming from a Pope.

    The old adage applies. “If ya can dish it out be ready to take it.”

  • It’s humbling – even terrifying – that a person can devote himself to the service of God and live so long without knowing his own weaknesses.

  • So PF is rewriting the examination of conscience? Used to be curses and insults came under other commandments. His commentary could be stretch in many different ways. Some will think that he is giving the green light to crimes of passion/feuds in raising insults to a higher level. Is he also saying to insult him is a mortal sin? As a local in my neck of the woods would say, “He generates much confusement.”

  • Those of you who are afraid the pope is making the Catholic Church into a Protestant church–Have a point in many areas. However, it will have to be a liberal Protestant church–maybe even along the lines of those that accept members of all faiths & no faith s.a. Atheists. I was a very conservative Protestant before becoming a very conservative Catholic. My conservative friends in the Protestant churches would NEVER join the type of “Catholic” church that the pope wishes to build. It is down right emabarrasing to read on social media my conservative Protestant friends’ horror over the pope’s last banishment of a sound Catholic Bishop or one of the pope’s latest anti-Catholic pro increments. *long sigh*.

  • Sorry! That last statement should have said “latest anti-Catholic pronouncements.”

  • “insult to tell Jorge Bergoglio the truth?”

    I am constantly finding that those on the Left claim offense for a multitude of reasons on of which is as an excuse to claim “higher ground” or a moral superiority to those with whom the Left disagree. And the pope is a Leftist.

    I have taken to telling people that stating the truth is not offensive unless the truth shoes them in a bad light. I also tell them that just because They choose to be offended doesn’t mean that I choose to take responsibility for their offense.

    The Left is quite adept at taking offense yet could care less if they give offense or cause others damage.

    I’m with Rush Limbaugh. He says there is no compromise with the Left. We must simply defeat the Left. May it be so.

  • To Christian Teacher: your comments remind me of the damage done by Liberal Catholics in the wake of Vatican II who drove ,many Catholics into Conservative protestant Churches.

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PopeWatch: Cardinal Coccopalmerio

Wednesday, February 15, AD 2017

 

 

Father Z brings us the details on Cardinal Coccopalmerio’s official or unofficial, response or nonresponse to the five dubia of the Four Cardinals:

 

 

In the shallow, liberal, Italian Catholic weekly Panorama we are informed about a booklet now out over the name of Card. Coccopalmerio, Prefect of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts.  It is ballyhooed as “the response” to the Five Dubia of the Four “intransigent” Cardinals, who are dissenters because they are defending doctrine.

Of course it can’t be that, can it?  The response to the Dubia should come from the Holy Father (to whom they were submitted) or from the CDF (whose Prefect has spoken unofficially about the issues but who hasn’t issued anything official).

Beware. When you read Panorama your IQ is likely to drop.  The use of verbs would help their writers come off as less smarmy.  But I digress.

Here is some of the piece in my fast translation.  My emphases  and comments.

In a little book on the reasons why the Church can’t turn back in the face of those who “are not in tune with Catholic doctrine”.

“Divorced and remarried, unmarried couples living together, are certainly not models of unions in harmony with Catholic doctrine, but the Church cannot look the other way. For which reason the sacraments of reconciliation and of communion ought to be given also to so-called wounded families[a euphemism intended to arouse emotion rather than thought, empathy rather than clarity] and to those who even though living in situations not in line with the traditional canons on matrimony, express a sincere desire to draw closer to the sacraments after an adequate period of discernment.” [Not just “canons”.  They are not in line with Christ’s teaching either, or the perennial doctrine of the Church.

This is the pointed, calm and precise response that Pope Francis gives [Noooo…. Pope Francis didn’t give it.  The Cardinal did.  But this is what they want you to accept.] to those especially within the church and even in the College of Cardinals, who continue to express doubts about the Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia in which, for the first time, there is foreseen the possibility of admitting to the sacraments those who contract a second marriage, unmarried couples living together and those people who live together in deformity with ecclesial directions in the matter of nuptial unions.

An indirect response, in any event, [See the slight of hand?] but [BUT!] the fruit of a deep canonical and ecclesiological study made, at the request of the same Pontiff, by one of the closest and most trusted collaborators, Cardinal Francesco Coccopalmerio, President of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts (the “ministry” of justice of the Holy See).

The text – a booklet of only 30 pages entitled, “The 8th chapter of the Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia” – was printed by the Vatican Press and on Wednesday 8 February arrived in religious bookstores which surround the Vatican.

The Doubts of the Four Cardinals

An initiative, they [the famous “they”] explained in the Vatican, that aims to “clarify” all the “doubts” raised by the most traditionalist elements bound with a vengeance [How mean!  How merciless!  How … mean!] to the defense of ecclesial doctrine in the matter of matrimonial life and of access to the sacraments.  [What sort of surreal, Dali-esque landscape has the Church become if those who defend doctrine are suddenly the dissenters?  Clocks are melting off the sides of tables.]

[…]

To all appearances, like a “normal” request for canonical clarifications, [This is more slight of hand: the Dubia ask for doctrinal clarifications, not just canonical.  So, the respose from an official of a canonical office isn’t going to take care of the doubts.] in reality a gesture of clear though polite disobedience on the part of four members of the College of Cardinals the organism which by its very nature is called to back up the reigning Pope in the governance of the Church.  [“Those dirty rotten mean old cardinals!  They are mean old meanies!”  (That’s the general level of the reader of Panorama, by the way.)]

It is normal that if a Cardinal feels the need to have clarifications on certain matters he can ask for them calmly – they assure us across the Tiber – in the course of personal audiences with the Pope. It is another thing to publish an open letter and bring up doubts and discontents in public opinion. A clearly offensive gesture toward the Pope almost completely like those which are used in interviews. As, for example, the German Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Müller, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, did in recent days, who, in a newspaper, openly criticized admission to the sacraments of couples living together and the divorced and remarried because, he admonished, Doctrine “is to be left alone” (la Dottrina “non si tocca”).  [Do you see what they did?  They smear Müller in order to raise Coccopalmerio above him as an authority.  Thus the Doctrinal Cardinal is out and the Canonical Cardinal is in.]

[…]

This is another confusing puzzle piece to deal with.  It is confusing because it has the appearance of official approval (it was published by the Vatican Press), but it remains a non-response response to the Five Dubia.  That’s probably why the ad hominem attacks lace the Panorama piece.

In any event, we still – prayerfully and patiently – await greater clarity from some with the true authority to issue what are manifest and actual responses to the Dubia.  Or else… we await a statement that they are not going to be answered.

Clocks melting off the edges of tables.  Elephants on stilts.  This situation is getting really strange.

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PopeWatch: Bannon

Tuesday, February 14, AD 2017

 

 

Further evidence that the Catholic left are busily attempting to depict the thrice-divorced Steve Bannon as a radical Catholic traditionalist.  From Breitbart, of which Bannon was formerly editor:

On the far-left MSNBC cable television channel Sunday, Father James Martin said that Steve Bannon is a “radical traditionalist” opposing Pope Francis’s reforms and pining “for a time when the Church was purer.”

In a segment titled “Steve Bannon vs. the Pope,” Martin suggested that Bannon uses Church teaching to promote “racist, misogynistic, homophobic, xenophobic sentiments.”

Apparently, in Father Martin’s version of the gospel, it is wrong to oppose radical Islamists, but it is fine to bear false witness against a fellow Christian, running him down with baseless slanders and slurs.

Bannon is not only an anti-Pope Francis, Martin alleged, “I would also say he is an anti-Pope Benedict and an anti-Pope John Paul.”

“All these people were about economic justice,” Martin said, implying that Steve Bannon is not.

 

Father Martin also made the astonishing claim that Jesus Christ does not share Steve Bannon’s view of Catholicism as the “Church militant,” which he said is a synonym of “radical traditionalists.”

“I don’t think it was Jesus’ point of view either,” he said.

What Father Martin fails to mention is that his religious order—the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits)—was approved in 1540 by Pope Paul III with the papal bull titled “To the Government of the Church Militant” and the Jesuits were commonly referred to as the pope’s “shock troops.”

Moreover, as literate Catholics know, the “Church militant” is a common expression employed by countless Catholic saints including Pope John Paul II to distinguish the members of the church on earth still doing battle with evil from those who have already died.

In his most famous text, The Spiritual Exercises, Saint Ignatius Loyola—the founder of the Jesuits—wrote out a series of rules that should be followed “to foster the true attitude of mind we ought to have in the church militant.”

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13 Responses to PopeWatch: Bannon

  • When everybody with whom Father Martin disagrees is a radical traditionalist (Is there anything wrong with it?), nobody is.

    If one believes the Pope and clergy ought to be more concerned with the salvation of souls than “economic justice” (whatever that is) or “social justice,” is a rad trad. Then, I am one.

    Bless their hearts. Father Martin and his ilk hate you. Act accordingly. Pray for them.

  • Here we see the pot calling the kettle, “black.” “Martin suggested that Bannon uses Church teaching to promote ‘racist, misogynistic, homophobic, xenophobic sentiments.'”

    That is Martin’s (and all liberals’) modus operandi. Politicize, subvert, and weaponize a sentence or two from a Gospel or two to advance “economic justice” (whatever that is); regularize or sacramentalize adultery, fornication, and sodomy; fundamentally transform evil, unjust America; etc. Then, proceed to damn to Hell, or hand over to the Inquisition, anyone that disagrees.

    The stupid, it hurts.

  • I guess the Jesuits have gone from “shock troops” to “shocked troops.”

  • The left wing slant of the Pope and the Fr. Martin’s of the world will bring in approximately 7 people back or to the Church while alienating millions more.
    How’s Anglicanism doing?

  • The spiritual and corporal works of mercy belong to the Church and the conscience of the person. Involuntary charity is extortion.
    Capitalism may be defined as giving to the customer what he needs (not what he wants) to survive and the customer giving to the merchant what he needs (not what he wants) to survive, in the absence of avarice, love of money, contempt for the customer and for the merchant, guile in the transaction; because all valid contracts, material and metaphysical, are made in the human beings’ immortal soul.

  • Father Martin also made the astonishing claim that Jesus Christ does not share Steve Bannon’s view of Catholicism as the “Church militant,” which he said is a synonym of “radical traditionalists.”

    “I don’t think it was Jesus’ point of view either,” he said.

    Funny, because if you know anything about 1st century Israel, you’d know that Jesus was raised in and came from an ultra-traditionalist town – the modern day equivalent of the “buckle of the bible-belt.” May not make Him immediately fundamentalist but it does make the picture more complex.

    See: (relevant bit starts at 8:45 in case the link below doesn’t start on time)
    https://youtu.be/wKKN5sSbFsI?t=8m46s

  • The night before last I went with a Protestant family member to her “church” which is evangelical (no, I am not converting over to the heretics; if I intend that, then all I have to do is heep lauds onto Jorge Bergoglio’s head). I heard more correct teaching about social justice from a preacher in breakway Protestantism than I ever will from this “Father”James Martin. Kindly read my commentary here; it’s too long to post in the comment space at TAC (you’ve been warned!):

    http://prognosticis.blogspot.com/2017/02/vesper-diei-solis-aput-ecclesiam.html?m=1

  • Time to dust off Pope Clement’s Dominus ac Redemptor the papal brief promulgated on 21 July 1773 by which Pope Clement XIV suppressed the Society of Jesus. Today’s Jesuits once again do not appear to be a net positive. Look at their colleges for instance. Scandalous!

  • Fr Martin is a perfect fit for MSNBC whose left-wing propaganda is irrelevant to normal Americans. Accordingly, it is doubtful he did much harm.

  • LCQ, this is relevant to your post.
    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/markshea/2017/02/libertarians-pro-choice-advocates-peas-pod.html

    (It’s funny, I thought Jesus said render to Ceaser and render to God etc – who knew the poor belonged to Ceaser.)

  • Caesar does such a good job taking care of the poor, too, by making so many more of them. Catholics who look to Caesar to truly relieve the poor, and allow them to provide for their own needs, are asking for a greater miracle than the Resurrection. As the song says:

    Give a man a free house and he’ll bust out the windows
    Put his family on food stamps, now he’s a big spender
    no food on the table and the bills ain’t paid
    ‘Cause he spent it on cigarettes and P.G.A.
    They’ll turn us all into beggars ’cause they’re easier to please
    They’re feeding our people that Government Cheese

    Give a man free food and he’ll figure out a way
    To steal more than he can eat ’cause he doesn’t have to pay
    Give a woman free kids and you’ll find them in the dirt
    Learning how to carry on the family line of work
    It’s the man in the White House, the man under the steeple
    Passing out drugs to the American people
    I don’t believe in anything, nothing is free
    They’re feeding our people the Government Cheese

    Decline and fall, fall down baby
    Decline and fall, said fall way down now
    Decline and fall, fall down little mama
    Decline and fall, decline and fall

    Give a man a free ticket on a dead end ride
    And he’ll climb in the back even though nobody’s driving
    Too ******* lazy to crawl out of the wreck
    And he’ll rot there while he waits for the welfare check
    Going to hell in a handbag, can’t you see
    I ain’t gonna eat no Government Cheese

  • Funny, I don’t know any faithful, loyal catholics who use so many “ists’ in a row, but there he is doing it.

  • With respect to Father Matin. Again I see moree evidence of the clericalism that has characterized the Catholic left as it uses the laity to serve its efforts to take over the Church. Since 1979 they have been wanting a liberal pope. Looks like they have him.

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PopeWatch: Zeitgeist

Monday, February 13, AD 2017

 

 

PopeWatch has long believed that the key to understanding the Pope is the way in which his native Argentina impacted his thought.  Over the weekend PopeWatch was reading a fascinating article published in 2015 that looked at the Pope’s intellectual background based on the dominant intellectual trends in Argentina during his formative years.  The author, Claudio I. Remeseira, summarizes the main aspects of his thought that explains much of his papacy:

Francis’ mindset straddles this divide. One Anti-Modern trait of his thinking is his mistrust of Liberalism. Despite his constant appeals to political tolerance, Francis’ political thought is rooted in a pre-modern, organicist view of the community as foundation of social and political life. Liberal democracy and the modern doctrine of human rights are the antithesis of that view. In Evangelii gaudium, the word “people” appears 164 times; the word “democracy”, not once.

Another trait is his hostility toward capitalism. Far for being inspired in any left-wing or Marxist philosophy, Francis’ anti-capitalism comes down from the European right-wing writers of the early 20th century, who in turn found their source of inspiration in the Middle Ages. At the final stage of the Cold War, John Paul II made a timid move towards accepting the market as an autonomous social force. In the age of the anti-globalization movement, Francis would have none of it. His critique of capitalism seems to go even further than the objections traditionally made by Catholic Social Teaching since Leo XIII’s Rerum Novarum. It is when indicting the world’s economic woes that Francis strikes his most prophetic tone (which, by the way, is another characteristic of Argentinian theology). The encyclical Laudato si, his great jeremiad against the evils of capitalism, has established Francis as one of the world’s foremost critics of Neoliberalism.

But, did the old adversary of Liberation Theology really turn into a radical leftist, as some critics on the right say? A quarter of a century after the demise of the Soviet Union and when the other world-Communist power, China, has morphed into its own kind of State-steered Capitalism, there is more room for the Pope to openly condemn social injustice without raising the suspicion of being a revolutionary. In any case, what Francis probably has in mind is not a socialist but some sort of populist economic system — something, perhaps, closer to a 21st-century update of the Peronist social-welfare state. Some of his initiatives, such as the World Encounter of Popular Movements, seemed to have been conceived with the intention of becoming the Solidarność of a post-Industrial era.

That era, already unfolding before us, has in Francis’ view one preeminent protagonist: the masses of the poor and the excluded, the disenfranchised of the world. They are the Peoples of God, the pilgrims of the Trinitarian God’s journey on this planet. To Francis, the mission of the Church is indistinguishable from them — it must be a Church of poverty and for the poor. Herein lies his true radicalism: an uncompromising identification between the suffering of the poor and Christ, and his determination to persuade the world to join in that mission.

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7 Responses to PopeWatch: Zeitgeist

  • The pope got his views on economics from European right-wing writers who looked back to the Middle Ages and not from Marxists? I don’t think so. This is the same pope who gladly accepted a sacrilegious crucifix with Christ on a hammer and sickle. Also, all of his “friends” in high office are at least socialists.

  • I don’t buy it. If the pope is against neoliberalism, why does he prominently ally himself with the neoliberal globalist establishment (Jeffrey Sachs, Paul Ehrlich, George Soros, U.N.dignitaries, etc.)? Why does he favor the same causes as they do, using much the same language (open borders, environmentalism, population control)? He decries capitalism, sure, but then so do many of his globalist partners. As Father of Seven points out, he seems never to have met a socialist “popular movement” not to his liking.

    As far as I can tell, there are two options: the pope is either an unwitting tool of the globalists–the most useful of idiots–or he is their conscious ally.

  • As far as I can tell, there are two options: the pope is either an unwitting tool of the globalists–the most useful of idiots–or he is their conscious ally.

    I think you’re assuming more sophistication on the part of the Pope than is actually there. Consider the environment of Pope Francis coming of age. Back in 1963, the American University Field Staff published an anthology on the evolution of political life in a raft of 3d world countries, Argentina included. The scholar writing about Argentina remarked that the political culture was bereft of a notion of mutually-beneficial exchange, hence politics had degenerated into a contest for power that income might be redistributed to one set of clientele or another, zero sum. The Pope also seems to conceive of ordinary business activity as a set of injuries done by criminals against abstractions in his mind (“the poor”). Law enforcement and employers are just big bad wolves to him.

  • Argentina is a basket case. It’s politics, economics, philosophy, it’s entire outlook on life is a failure. Blessed with natural resources, the Argentine state is maybe the b8ggwst failure on the world stage, rivaled by Mexico. In Bergoglio’s Argentina, the US is hated, but no Argentine would pass on the opportunity to move to the US.
    Argentina’s population is similar to Canada and Poland. Both nations have a superior economy. Poland has surpassed Argentina in less than 30 Yeats of being a free nation.
    The mission of the Church I’d to lead souls to Christ, rich, poor, middle class, whatever and wherever.
    The current Pontiff does not think so such because he is incapable of it. He is a Caudillo Pope, a bully who squashes all who disagree with him. The greater failure is not Bergoglio but the cardinals who elected him.

  • South Sudan is a basket case. Argentina’s merely a disappointment. It’s political life is far more orderly than it was in 1963 and it remains (bar Chile and Urguay) the most affluent Latin American country (and one of the few with a homicide rate under 10 per 100,000). Still, the Pope’s understanding of his world likely gelled when Argentina was a politico-economic mess.

  • To me the Pope has no business engaging in public political or economic discussion. His job is to be the Vicar of Christ and do what Christ would do if He were here, which, as far as we know, is still the salvation of souls. How many times have we listened to Pope Francis and were inspired to become more holy ourselves? How about never?

    One thing Pope Francis could do right now is to advocate the increased use of the sacrament of Confession. But can any of imagine him doing such a thing? Of course not. Unfortunately, Pope Francis is all about the things of this world, i.e, government handouts, antipathy towards Capitalism, and denigration of orthodox Catholics. As a result he fails in his mission of doing what Christ would do.

  • I’m still waiting for somebody to show me where in the bible Jesus taught and directed his disciples to go get government to take care of the poor. Did not Jesus say, “You will always have the poor.” Why is the leadership in the Church so willing to turn over to government the responsibility of “caring for the poor?”

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PopeWatch: Lutherans

Saturday, February 11, AD 2017

 

 

 

From the only reliable source of Catholic news on the net, Eye of the Tiber:

Just hours after Pope Francis published his latest work Reformatio Si, Catholic theologian Cardinal Walter Kasper told reporters that, though Pope Francis’ apostolic exhortation mandating all Catholics convert to Lutheranism might be tough to comprehend, he nevertheless prayed that they have faith in the same Holy Spirit that not only chose Francis to become pope, but also “was the instrument behind the works of St. Martin Luther.”

“I would like to say that, though this new exhortation is a few hundred years coming, it’s finally here,” Kasper said. “Honesty, I think that controversies surrounding Reformatio Si are ludicrous. Luther reformed a corrupt Church, meaning that his ideas were superior to the Catholic faith, and since God calls us to greatness, we then ought to except the superiority and greatness of Luther’s teachings.”

“Listen, and listen to me clearly,” Kasper went on to say. “I got 95 thesis but a pope ain’t one. I understand that and Francis understands that. And that’s why, as of tomorrow, Pope Francis will relinquish his title as Head of the Whore of Babylon, and will kindly ask to simply be called ‘Pastor Jorge.’ He has been given a part-time job as Associate Youth Pastor in Training at Atonement Lutheran Church in Louisville Kentucky. We ask everyone to pray that he does well.”

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PopeWatch: Loopy Left

Friday, February 10, AD 2017

 

 

It is sometimes interesting to take a look at how the far left views the events of the current pontificate.  Australian journalist Emma-Kate Symons in an op ed in The Washington Post entitled How Pope Francis can Cleanse the Far Right Rot From the Catholic Church:

 

Pope Francis needs to take tougher action against the United States’ most influential Catholic in Rome, Cardinal Raymond “Breitbart” Burke. The renegade cleric is not only undermining Francis’s reformist, compassionate papacy, and gospel teaching as it applies to refugees and Muslims, but the rebel prince of the church is also using his position within the walls of the Vatican to legitimize extremist forces that want to bring down Western liberal democracy, Stephen K. Bannon-style. Simply put, the Vatican is facing a political war between the modernizing Pope Francis and a conservative wing that wants to reassert white Christian dominance.

Burke was reduced to a ceremonial patron role at the Knights of Malta after a power struggle at the ancient chivalric order, won by the pope last month, following a spat over its humanitarian wing’s alleged distribution of condoms. Losing the leadership battle and prestige at the secretive society headquartered in Rome — Francis is appointing his own special delegate above Burke — was seen as a papal rap on the knuckles for the cardinal leading the charge against Francis’s writings on communion for divorcees. But the virulently anti-Islam (“capitulating to Islam would be the death of Christianity”), migrant-phobic, Donald Trump-defending, Vladimir Putin-excusing Burke is unrepentant and even defiant, continuing to preside over a far-right, neo-fascist-normalizing cheer squad out of the Holy See.

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7 Responses to PopeWatch: Loopy Left

  • Wow- she says a mouthful- of tripe. Why does she get to do an op-ed? How do some of these natterers get such pulpits? I am so tired of them getting to have influence. What will have to happen for “the people” to see the truth of what is going on!

  • thinking of “the people” and populism I just read an article at http://magister.blogautore.espresso.repubblica.it/2017/02/10/this-time-“la-civilta-cattolica”-dissents-from-the-pope-on-populism/

    it is hard to recognize the Divine Wind under the wings of populist movements when it doesn’t suit you

  • https://www.linkedin.com/in/emma-kate-symons-8638ba12/

    Why does she get to do an op-ed? How do some of these natterers get such pulpits?

    She’s a lapsed newspaper reporter from Australia. She lost her job > 2 years ago and has been keeping her hand in as an occasional contributor at sundry papers. Presumably, there’s a husband stationed in Washington paying the bills. Newspapers were still viable enterprises when she got into the business 20 years ago. She should be retooling at her age.

  • I don’t have the time or space to correct all the “fake news” contaminating that deceitful diatribe.

    I’ll fall back on a favorite movie line from “My Cousin Vinnie.” Everything that guy just said is bullshit.”

    That being said, here are the bases of the “tangled web the pope and assorted false news artists weave when first they practice to deceive.” They deploy some or all of the following: agit[prop (agitation and propaganda), calumny, character assassination, confirmation bias, confusion, distortion, exaggeration, false equivalency, non sequitur, omissions, repetitions, repetitions, repetitions, vitriol.

  • There is no more definitive litmus test of deficient orthodoxy than the dance with P. Francis of leftists. Oremus.

  • “delusional political categories that make up their world view”

    Wow. That is spectacular phrasing. And dead on right. I am going to have to memorize that phraseology & use it to advantage!

  • “They deploy some or all of the following: agit[prop (agitation and propaganda), calumny, character assassination, confirmation bias, confusion, distortion, exaggeration, false equivalency, non sequitur, omissions, repetitions, repetitions, repetitions, vitriol.”

    I wonder which category or categories the “I’m offended because you are being rude (or hostile or disrespectful or something similar) fits? I keep running into folks who get upset & cry foul when I tell them the truth or point out the logical end of a fallacy they are stating/defending. And these Leftists get even more befuddled when I tell them that staying the truth is not rude or indicate that I am not impressed by their offense taking. They are particularly perturbed by unapologetic stances with which they disagree & my stating that there is no reason for me to discuss things with people who only want to destroy me–that I intend to defeat them.

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2 Responses to PopeWatch: Open Thread

  • When Pope Francis becomes charitable and concise, he will become amusing. Right now, I am not laughing, nor am I amused. Pope Francis will reap what he sows…wretchedness.

  • SACRED SOVEREIGN PERSONHOOD AND PERSONALITY
    “For you are men sacred to me, for I, the Lord, your God am sacred.”
    “We hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal…”in sovereign personhood.
    The Supreme Sovereign Being is three Sovereign Persons in one God, Creator, Redeemer and Sanctifier, sacred, unchangeable, and immutable.
    Man’s Sovereign Personhood is sacred, created in original innocence, morally and legally innocent, irreplaceable and self-determined. Man’s Sovereign Personhood is endowed at the very first moment of his existence, his existence being brought into being by The Supreme Sovereign Being, man’s body and soul being endowed by his Creator with innate human rights enumerated and codified as “unalienable” civil rights by the sovereign state; the sovereign state that is instituted by man’s sovereign personhood.
    “that among these rights are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”, The Unanimous Declaration of Independence of the United States ratified by every state.
    “The enumeration in The Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.” Amendment IX.
    The Sovereign Personhood of man enables all men to be self-determined, that is, to accomplish himself, to seek and find his destiny and to satisfy his intellect. In addition, man is free to express his talents and pursue his “Happiness” even unto eternal life, in original innocence, complete moral and legal innocence, with integrity, and the free will endowed by his “Creator” in freedom.
    In the beginning of man’s existence, he enjoys complete moral and legal, original innocence, the substance of his sovereign personhood. At the age of reason, usually about seven years of age and the initiation into adulthood about fourteen years of age and the emancipation from parental dependency at about eighteen years of age, the human being, through his sovereign personhood, accepts his responsibility and engages his freedom to pursue his Happiness and destiny into the being of the transcendent, metaphysical, rational, immortal, human soul of his sovereign personhood.
    If the rational human being makes irrational choices or chooses to violate Justice, injury to his sovereign personhood becomes a reality that radiates throughout his being, mortal and immortal. The man loses his sovereignty over himself incrementally as to the weight and grievousness of his crimes. The man becomes an outlaw.
    A man with damaged or incrementally violated sovereign personhood can only institute the sovereign state to the degree that his sovereignty over himself is viable.
    Only through the crime of capital one homicide, murder in the first degree, does a man lose his sovereign personhood. Having taken another man’s life, the murderer must live his victim’s life, unto eternity, unless through total and perfect contrition, the capital one murderer expires with grief over his crimes and releases the sovereign personhood of his victim’s life.
    God let the first murderer, Cain, live because the life Cain was living was Abel’s life. Abel must have forgiven Cain as he lay dying. Abel’s blood cried out to God from the ground and God heard Abel’s cry for Justice. Cain became a wanderer living Abel’s life, without a life of his own, as a sign of Justice; Abel’s Justice through God’s love for Abel. If the victim refuses to forgive his murderer, or the murderer does not expire with grief over his crime against mankind, the murderer must be put to death to release the murderer’s victim. Living the life of his victim, the murderer must be put to death. The murderer’s victim is dead.
    Other instances of total obliteration of a man’s sovereign personhood, are bloodlust in war and treason and the embrace of atheism, the denial of his and all of mankind’s “Creator”. Obliteration is not annihilation, the sovereign personhood of a man, once created even though discarded, remains as a testimony to his self-destruction and the Justice of God.
    It goes without saying, that a man who has denied his sovereign personhood and obliterated Justice in his soul, becoming an outlaw, has no authentic authority to institute the sovereign nation. His lack of Justice and sovereignty over himself cannot be imposed on a Just and sovereign nation.
    Sovereign personhood is endowed to man by his “Creator” in original innocence at existence. The sovereign person enjoys his sovereignty over himself. This is who man is. Personality is what man makes of himself, using his sovereign personhood. Obliterating his sovereign personhood through violation of Justice brings man to a criminal personality. The cult of a just man, saints and statesmen, is rejoicing. The cult of an unjust man, or criminal, is fear and trepidation. Enabling an unjust man in his pursuit of damnation is giving aid and comfort to the enemy. End
    Rene Descartes said: “I think therefore, I am.” giving rise to the cult of personality to individuals who think and otherwise, disregarding individuals who are in being. Rene Descartes meant to say: “I am, therefore I think; I am, therefore, I will; I am, therefore, I am.”

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PopeWatch: Vatican Farce

Wednesday, February 8, AD 2017

 

 

Background on the Knights of Malta debacle from Tim Hedges at The Commentator:

 

It is hard to know how Pope Francis gets himself into these scrapes. What should have been a quiet private matter, if it happened at all, was in every paper in the civilised world. For sheer, bull headed, foot-in-mouth belligerence Papa Bergoglio trumps Trump.

The Prince and Grand Master of the Order of Malta was Fra’ Robert Matthew Festing, Guards Officer and son of a Chief of the Imperial General Staff. You have to be a bit socially upmarket to get on in this company, the other bigwigs being a selection of the European Catholic aristocracy.

Anyway, Festing had sacked Albrecht, Freiherr von Boeselager, the Grand Chancellor, on the grounds that he, the Freiherr, had been involved in charitable works which distributed condoms. Now, the Catholic faith is against the use of condoms, so you might imagine that the Pope would have patted the blessed Festing on the back for ridding the order of a dangerous progressive.

It is of course Francis who is the progressive, dangerous or otherwise, but, being the Pope, he can’t say that condoms are OK. As with offering Holy Communion to divorcees, he can’t change the rules but doesn’t want them exercised too strictly. So he just sacked someone for doing the right thing.

Then came the posters. All over central Rome, they featured a grumpy looking Pope and, underneath, a philippic against the Holy Father, mentioning, amongst other sins, the Order of Malta fiasco. Where is your Mercy?, it asked, referring to the Pope’s Jubilee year of Mercy.

Strangely enough, the screed was written in the Roman dialect, putting it in the tradition of the denouncers and rumour mongers of old, who used to leave their handwritten defamations on various statues in the ancient city. But no one is fooled by this. They all think it comes from Cardinal Burke.

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3 Responses to PopeWatch: Vatican Farce

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PopeWatch: Burke Out

Tuesday, February 7, AD 2017

 

PopeWatch wonders if the Pope had this all planned out when he assigned Cardinal Burke to the Knights of Malta?:

 

 

ROME-Pope Francis has appointed a personal delegate to the Sovereign Order of Malta to serve as the sole liaison between the embattled order and the Vatican, virtually replacing American Cardinal Raymond Burke.

The man tapped for the job is Archbishop Angelo Becciu, the Vatican’s deputy Secretariat of State (known as the “substitute”). The decision was announced by the Vatican on Saturday, through a letter from Francis to Becciu.

As “sole spokesperson in all matters relating to relations” between the Vatican and the order, the pope writes, Becciu will have “all the necessary powers to decide any issues that may arise concerning the implementation of the mandate entrusted to you.”

Becciu’s assignment as papal delegate will last until a new Grand Master for the order is elected, which could take place in April after the group’s Sovereign Council is summoned, according to what was announced by the Knights of Malta in a recent press conference.

Technically, Burke is the papal envoy to the order. He assumed that role in November 2014, after leaving the post of head of the Vatican’s Supreme Court.

 

Becciu will in the meantime work closely with Ludwing Hoffmann von Rumerstein, currently the Lieutenant ad interim of the order, appointed last Saturday, after former Grand Master Matthew Festing presented his resignation at the pope’s request.

Festing’s resignation marked the end of a power struggle between the Order of Malta and the Vatican, which began with the dismissal of Albrecht Boeselager from his position as Grand Chancellor in early December. The month-long spat included Francis’s creating a committee to examine the order’s situation, which the now former Grand Master had declared “legally irrelevant.”

 

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10 Responses to PopeWatch: Burke Out

  • “Technically, Burke is the papal envoy to the order.”
    No, he is Patron of the order, a position similar to that of Cardinal Protector, representing its interests to the Holy See.

  • “A sign of peace, friendship and solidarity.” That was Pope Francis’ message to the world on Super Bowl Sunday; http://cathnews.com/cathnews

    What is his message now?

  • Well that leaves Burke with nothing of earthly value to lose–a position of extreme power.

  • This move makes the pope look like a small, petty, vindictive person. Oh, well, nothing new.

  • Maybe there’s a photo op in the works for the pope to be part of passing out condoms for “safe” sex.

  • “PopeWatch wonders if the Pope had this all planned …”

    Me too

  • Sad that a commenter below still thinks this had anything to do with condoms. Both sides said it didn’t.

    Francis said handle your problems quietly through dialogue. Festing and Burke chose confrontation. The idea that Francis could have foreseen this is foolish but as the lawyers say: in retrospect this was foreseeable.

    If the end result is the Order of Malta addressing the dwindling number of professed members — now just 55 — that’s a very good thing. Hate to think what the average age of those 55 is.

    And keep an eye on Becciu. Very much a man to watch.

  • Francis said handle your problems quietly through dialogue. Festing and Burke chose confrontation.

    The counsels of the passive-aggressive and manipulative man is something that promotes disgust in an ordinary man, not apologetics.

  • “The counsels of the passive-aggressive and manipulative man is something that promotes disgust in an ordinary man, not apologetics.”

    Bingo.

    Plus, really, Will: the pontiff was so concerned about dialogue that he responds by initiating a conflagration?

    That ain’t Shinola.

  • Francis said handle your problems quietly through dialogue.

    Please explain where the dialog is involved, because as I recall this was the Pope demanding a resignation he is not technically in authority to demand it of, in apparent response to their group removing a person who was in charge when stuff in their area of authority was not properly done.
    And yet your response is that the person who did as the Pope ordered is being confrontational?

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PopeWatch: Posters

Monday, February 6, AD 2017
Rorate Caeli brings us this story about anti-Francis posters going up in Rome:
Rome woke up this Saturday with something quite new, and very old, in its streets: posters throughout the City (in the style of the old “pasquinate“) critical of the Pope.
In English, from the Romanesco-inspired Italian:

Ah Francis, you have intervened in Congregations, removed priests, decapitated the Order of Malta and the Franciscans of the Immaculate, ignored Cardinals… but where is your mercy?

These were common at the time of the Papal States (before the fall of Porta Pia and the full unification of Italy in 1870): not for religious reasons, but rather for political complaints, since the Popes were also the secular rulers of the Pontifical territories.
Since then, these public criticisms of Pontiffs mostly disappeared in the City, considering the new Italian authorities were now those responsible for the secular government of the old papal territories, and that the Pope remained responsible only for religious matters. They still show up all the time against Italian politicians. 
 

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5 Responses to PopeWatch: Posters

  • Reflection, introspection….May the posters serve his Holiness well.

  • According to an article in the January 2106 issue of Catholic World Report,
    attendance at papal events (general audiences, special audiences, liturgies, and
    the Wednesday Angelus) has been steadily declining. In 2015, Vatican attendance
    figures stood at 3,210,860, 45% fewer than the 5,916,800 recorded for 2014
    and less than half of the crowds of 6,623,900 Francis drew in the first nine
    months of his pontificate in 2013. The biggest drop-off has been in attendance
    for the Angelus, with 1.6 million in attendance over 2015, compared to over
    3 million the year before. General Audiences with the Pope require a ticket,
    so attendance numbers can be tracked with particular precision. According to
    the Prefecture of the Papal Household, which issues the tickets, in 2013 the
    Audiences were attended by 51,617 people, in 2014 it declined to 27,883,
    and in 2015 Francis’ General Audiences were attended by just 14,818.

    The Angelus figures are revealing, I believe, because it is during the Angelus
    that Popes give a brief sermon to crowds in the square below. Pope St. John
    Paul II had a natural charisma that made up for a sometimes convoluted
    speaking and writing style, and his Wednesday Angelus addresses were very
    well attended. Shy Benedict XVI, bless him, had little natural charisma but
    a powerful, clear, logical and learned writing style that more than made up
    for his lackluster delivery –indeed, the crowds for his Angelus addresses
    exceeded those for his predecessor. With Francis, the Catholic faithful
    appear to see neither charisma nor the clear exposition of doctrine, and so,
    to borrow a phrase from that great philosopher Yogi Berra, “They’re staying
    away in droves”.

    While Francis still has drawing power as a tourist attraction, it appears that
    the number of Catholics drawn to see and hear this Pope is fast dwindling.
    Myself, I would not cross the street to hear him speak, let alone travel to Rome.

  • “…the Pope remained responsible only for religious matters. They still show up all the time against Italian politicians. ”
    Oh? If the shoe fits…

  • Pope Francis can fool all of the people some of the time and…

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