Tuesday, December 8, 2015

I AM LEFT SCRATCHING MY HEAD AT ONE PARAGRAPH OF POPE FRANCIS' HOMILY FOR THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION

I am puzzled by our Jesuit pope not realizing that it was the pre-Vatican II Church and the Church of the Counter Reformation that was missionary and the Jesuits are a prime example of it.

This is what His Holiness said this morning about the missionary zeal of the Church that Vatican II wanted to recover:

Before all else, the Council was an encounter. A genuine encounter between the Church and the men and women of our time. An encounter marked by the power of the Spirit, who impelled the Church to emerge from the shoals which for years had kept her self-enclosed so as to set out once again, with enthusiasm, on her missionary journey. It was the resumption of a journey of encountering people where they live: in their cities and homes, in their workplaces. Wherever there are people, the Church is called to reach out to them and to bring the joy of the Gospel. After these decades, we again take up this missionary drive with the same power and enthusiasm. The Jubilee challenges us to this openness, and demands that we not neglect the spirit which emerged from Vatican II, the spirit of the Samaritan, as Blessed Paul VI expressed it at the conclusion of the Council. May our passing through the Holy Door today commit us to making our own the mercy of the Good Samaritan. 

My Comments: Yes, prior to Vatican II the Church was in a defensive mode, but she went to the New World and converted complete nations to Christ and her Church. A South American pope should know this.

Yes, the Church was condemning this, that and the other prior to Vatican II but she went to Africa and Asia and made great converts.

Yes, the Church was triumphalistic before Vatican II but many saints came to the USA and Canada to convert the native people many of whom were martyred for their missionary zeal!

I don't know what Pope Francis means that Vatican II recovered the Church's missionary zeal. In fact soon after Vatican II there was a push not to evangelize people of other religions and converts to the faith dropped dramatically. That has shifted over time, but Vatican II misunderstood immediately in its "spirit" aftermath saw a declilne in missionary zeal not an increase.

But yes, Vatican II did call for missionary zeal but not as if it didn't occur prior to Vatican II!

It does seem to me that Pope Francis is contradicting the prevailing notion immmediately following Vatican II that we didn't have to be missionary when in fact Vatican II said no such thing. It taught us to engage the culture in order to win converts, who freely choose the Church.

What is condemned is proselytizing and forcing conversions, which in fact did happen in the Americas with the native, indigenous populations.

But even in forced conversions--there was a great zeal, a fanatical zeal prior to Vatican II. We threw the baby of zeal out the window when we got rid of fanaticism.

I fear Pope Francis has made a false distinction in his homily about the missionary zeal of the Church prior to Vatican II. It was there and greater than in the immediate aftermath of Vatican II.

11 comments:

Julian Barkin said...

Hi father. Perhaps I can expand a bit on the missionary part of the speech, although I am no Professor Xavier with mental powers to probe Pope Francis' mind. This is coming from someone who has been taking a summer course in the new evangelization (1 summer course of 3 left.)

Hopefully want Pope Francis means is the development of the concept of mission and who is to be receptive to the missionary, as well as who IS a missionary in the Church. In prior thoughts and writing, as displayed in certain pre-Vatican II documents. The concept of missionary work was mainly thought to be that of the realm of he priest with foreign lands/cultures/remote parts of the country as missionary territory. The tone of the documents was more "authoritative" in a sense.

As of Vatican II with such documents as in Vatican II and beyond (ad gentes? But for sure Evangelii Nuntiandii ... Not at home currently with no time for extensive searching) changed in perspective and tone. The concept of who the missionary changed to rapidly include the Laity, speaking of their participation in the role of priest, prophet and Kingships of Christ's mission to spread the gospel. That is, all baptized Cathlolics. In addition, even at the START of Vatican II, the need to re-evangelize once strong Catholic nations was present and realized, including those people in our home territories (a.k.a. Families, parishes, neighborhoods) as part of the mission of evangelization.

I can only hope that this is what the Holy Father means. Unless he chooses to use a fervorino or speech to expand on what he means, I will give him the benefit of the doubt. This I can also give, knowing he was cstechised as a priest (adulthood) as a priest during the heyday of the "Spirit" of Vatican II. I would rather remain hopeful than be like those Who have lost the virtues of Hope And Faith and have signed a horrid petition attributed, promoted, or created by Rorate Caeli, the news source for Francis Hate.

Let's hope he means well and was imprudent in word choice (or his translators are purposefully screwing up I his message, and therefore the Pope is partially/fully NOT responsible). Regardless I take his event of the beginning of the Year of Mercy in gratitude.

Jusadbellum said...

Less than 20 years before Vatican II the entire civilized world had gone through almost a decade of world war and prior to that a decade of economic collapse as well as a dozen low grade conflicts and civil wars...and before that, another great world war.

So please explain to me exactly how this pre-Vatican II church was supposed to BE MORE open with the world?

How exactly was the Church in Europe to be "open" during the rise of Fascism, communism, national socialism, masonry, etc.? Let's go country by country and perhaps someone can explain to me how easy it would have been for that era's clergy to do more than they did?

Portugal 1900 to 1963: Started out with a military and secular dictatorship. Fatima occurred in 1917 and while the humble folk were Catholic the social elites were not.

Spain: Terminal decline of Spanish monarchy, collapse followed by a horrifically bloody 10 year period of civil war and social displacement running into WW2.

France: secular regime hostile to Catholicism running right up to WW2.

Germany: need I explain why things were sub-optimal for German Catholics?
Poland: Poland was annihilated by Germany and the USSR and then occupied by Soviets.
Italy: fall of kingdom (which was heavily masonic and anti-Catholic, rise of Fascism, WW2 followed by Communist insurgents and Mafiosos....

Africa and Asia: the colonial powers' pull out from Africa was attended with civil wars, Marxists and native inspired insurgencies, and chaos.

Asia: Japan's invasion swept through all of the Far East and wiped out a huge swath of missions.... and was replaced by Communist insurgents...

Latin America from Mexico to Argentina: from 1900 to 1962 there was a long cycle of dictatorships and civil wars and Marxist rebellions.

So.... given the enormous upheavals facing the majority of Catholics on earth, how exactly does our Holy Father think the blinkered bad old Pr-Vatican II church was supposed to magically stop the tide of history with even MORE missionary endeavors than it did? When more than 50% of Catholics regularly attended Mass (vs. less than 25% today) I'd say the bad old days was pretty effective given the circumstances.

I have to say, our Pope doesn't seem to be terribly well educated when it comes to history or even logic. How exactly do you get to blame arms manufactures for being warmongers but then blame the Allies for not bombing the railroad lines leading to the concentration camps? If those arms merchants were immoral and should not have made weaponry, with what does He feel they should have used to fly bombs over occupied Polish territory? Doves?

George said...


Mary Immaculata

Just as the waters of the Nile were parted to the allow the Israelites to pass through untouched, so was the temporal flow of Original sin through the power of God parted at the Blessed Virgins conception. By a singular grace of God, she was untouched by that Sin of Adam which is our unfortunate inheritance..
The Triune God had a plan for man’s salvation, due to the fall of Adam and Eve, and it included the mother of the Incarnate Word, the Blessed Virgin (as it still does) in a unique and special way. Before a farmer plants, does he not prepare the soil? Before an artist paints, does he not prepare the canvas? Before a builder puts up a structure, does he not prepare the building site? Likewise the Blessed Virgin was prepared by a singular privilege to be worthy for her awaited role as the Mother of the Son of the Living God.
While God did prepare the Blessed Virgin for the role do be His mother, she freely chose to become the instrument by which the Savior of the human race became one of us, so that by His suffering and death He could redeem us from our sins. She freely chose to take on and accept all the pains, sufferings and tribulations that being the Mother of Christ entailed, and these were in co-operation with and given value by the merits of Christ's own Suffering and Death.

Anonymous said...

I guess enough people are miffed..there's a petition going around over at The Remnant asking the pope to either recant or resign. They better watch out, apparently you occur excommunication if you dare say anything bad about the pope.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Calumny, gossip, complete contempt for the Holy Father are all sins against charity and deserve condemnation and excommunication if it persists in the written media. It is divisive. It is also Protestant of the Jack Chick publications kind! It is unbelievable. I can't believe that so-called traditional or conservative Catholics don't realize just how post-Catholic or Protestant of the fundamentalist ilk they are in doing what they are doing and spewing it publicly but at times hiding behind the facade of internet anonymity. Martin Luther would approve and the more radical Protestant reformers.

John Nolan said...

Sorry, those particular comments of Pope Francis are unadulterated piffle. I actually admired his homilies in the early days (at least they were short and to the point) but recently the old boy is showing signs that he is losing the plot. 'The spirit which emerged from Vatican II' was the 'fumo di Satana' identified by Paul VI when he finally came to his senses. Give me a large gin and tonic any day.

Flavius Hesychius said...

Psh... excommunication isn't all that bad lol.

Jan said...

Pope Francis obviously hasn't read the statement of the Dutch bishops that they will be closing two-thirds of their parishes this coming Easter (over 1,000) due, they say, to the lack of missionary zeal on the part of the Church since Vatican II. We have more leaving the Church than coming in which says a lot for the state of the missionary activity since Vatican II. In fact, the Church will be better off once She finally puts Vatican II behind her and admits (what the honest among us will admit) that the Church has been in rapid decline ever since. Really, those who continue to keep their heads buried in the sand about Vatican II remind me of the liberal media who almost buried themselves up to their ankles rather than admit that San Bernadino was an Islamic terrorist attack.

JBS said...

Jan,

While I am not entirely unsympathetic to some of their concerns, I can't help but notice that the SSPX is very tiny compared to the rest of the Latin Church. Few Catholics are interested in what they have to offer.

Gene said...

JBS, few Catholics are interested in right belief and true doctrine embodied in real life and in a True Church. They just want to feel good.

Jan said...

JBS, what has the SSPX got to do with this? Catholics don't need to attend the SSPX to know that the Church is in rapid decline. The Dutch Church is an exemplar of that. The Church has been in steady decline since Vatican II, as all the statistics point to but now it is becoming a rapid decline: hence the closing of many parishes around the world. But the Dutch bishops have been forthright and stated that the closure of their parishes is due to the lack of evangelisation on their part since Vatican II. So Pope Francis has got it wrong.