Saturday, October 11, 2014


A stark reminder in the Sistine Chapel to everyone, especially popes and bishops who Michelangelo depicted in hell in his famous painting below!
It is disconcerting that after a period of striving to consolidate the Church within the context of doctrinal and moral truth to give the People of God a clear and integrated approach to living the moral life as a Catholic and making clear what is in the boundaries of the teachings of Christ and what isn't, that we are now debating things as though it is 1970 once again. I have no nostalgia for the 1970's whatsoever and it is one of the most corrupt periods of the Church that has led to the crisis of the Church today, the sexual abuse scandal, which peaked in the Church in 1974 according to the John Jay Study of the scandal in the USA.

Are we heading for an even greater breach of disobedience, disloyalty and degeneration as Catholics with the hierarchy leading the way? Time will tell. Ultimately the Lord will sort it out at our personal judgment and at the Last Judgment when all is made public. We've had a foretaste of this public airing of the dastardly truth with the sex abuse scandal and that's peanuts compared to the Final Judgement. Stay tuned!

Here are some stunningly strong words from a Cardinal who has nothing to lose in telling the truth!


JBS said...

At this point I think even those of us who wish to explain and defend the statements and actions of Pope Francis have to begin to admit that, at least so far in his papacy, there is more confusion on faith and morals than there was under Pope Benedict. It takes considerable effort to understand how his statements and actions fit within received Catholic thought and life, and even more effort to explain how his words and actions are consistent with Tradition. But that may be more our fault than his. We're still learning his approach to things.

Were this situation not so similar to the papacy of Paul VI, I think it would be easier to hope for a good overall outcome.

Were this situation not so dissimilar to the papacies of JPII and BXVI, I think much of the negative reaction today would be softer.

At any rate, there certainly is need of a synod to find effective ways to strengthen the sacrament of marriage in post-Christian cultures, so I hope this one helps.

Gene said...

JBS, when a large group of Bishops or Cardinals get together it is very difficult to anticipate a "good overall outcome."

MR said...

Card Burke has been elected the moderator of one of the three English speaking groups (along with Kurtz and Napier).

JBS said...

Archbishop Kurtz ordained me, and I have been very impressed with Cardinal Napier's Twitter posts for some time (he's a clear teacher). Burke is simply legendary among faithful Catholics. May God bless them.

Gene, perhaps. Perhaps.

Anonymous 2 said...

Cardinal Burke is all very clear and logical. As a member of the legal profession, at one level I cannot fault his reasoning. But now let me problematize it at another level. First, is it necessary to make certain distinctions among the following situations?:

(1) The remarried Catholic does not apply for an annulment;

(2) The remarried Catholic does apply for an annulment and

(a) The application is denied because, in light of all the relevant evidence, which is readily available, the “objective conditions” are not made out;

(b) The application is denied because, in light of the evidence that is available, the “objective conditions” are not made out, but some relevant evidence is just not available, e.g., because witnesses are dead, uncooperative, etc.

It would seem that, situation (2) (b) presents equities that are not present in situation (1) and situation 2 (a). Father McDonald, have I understood correctly that situation (2) (b) is where the notion of “the internal forum” applies?

Second, let me put the following case, which arguably raises analogous issues: A, a non-Catholic, marries B, a Catholic, in a civil ceremony in 1947 (therefore pre-Vatican II). Neither of them has been married before. The parents of A are extremely unhappy that A is marrying B, in significant part because B is a Catholic (with all the unpleasantness and trauma frequently experienced in such situations). A is caught in the middle between his love and respect for his parents and his love for B. B will not give the required promise about raising any children of the marriage as Catholic (something required in pre-Vatican II days) because she knows that if she does and there is a Catholic religious ceremony, A’s parents would be even unhappier than they already are. A and B do exchange vows privately on their own in a Catholic Church before God, however. A child C is born of this marriage. For almost three decades B feels estranged from the Church, attending Mass occasionally but never receiving communion.

How should this situation be analyzed under canon law? How should B have been shepherded pastorally? Also, to be a “good Catholic,” should B have refused to marry A, given that insisting on a Catholic marriage ceremony was not a realistic option? And yes, it’s personal (I am C and will continue the story later).

Why do I pose this case? Because, as any good lawyer, or priest, knows full well, abstract doctrine is one thing, smelly sheep are another.

Anonymous said...

His Grace Cardinal Burke is the reason I have not given up on the Church and have not joined the S.S.P.X. I must admit it has been close, but I have a gut feeling this Holy man named Raymond Leo Burke will be our next Holy Father and restore the Roman Rite of All Times to Rome!!!!

JBS said...

Catholics have a right to marry Catholics, but have no right to marry non-Catholics. It is an act of mercy for a priest or bishop to permit a Catholic to marry a baptized non-Catholic, and it is an act of mercy for a bishop to dispense from Church law to allow for a non-sacramental marriage with a non-Christian.

The Church is a community, and members should live according to the rules of this community.

Anonymous said...

JBS, I used to be certain that Gene had the reddest neck in the neighborhood. Your 3:37 bit is causing me to reconsider.

And you're a priest...right? Yikes!

(It's "an act of mercy" for me to stop here.)

Flavius Hesychius said...

JBS, I used to be certain that Gene had the reddest neck in the neighborhood. Your 3:37 bit is causing me to reconsider.

Berk. Je souhaite que j'aie l'honneur de «Le Grand Plouc» parce que tous ceux que je connais me disent que j'ai l'air albinos et anémique. Bien sûr, ils me disent que j'ai l'air homosexual, alors je ne sais si leurs avis sont exacts.

Eh bien, je me le puis donner l'honneur, mais ce serait loufoque, non?