Monday, January 11, 2016


Two things, Pope Francis is orthodox with it comes to loving the sinner and condemning sin. He also condemns sinners who are corrupt, meaning, they don't believe they are sinners and glory in their sinful lifestyles. It seems to me that this would include those in institutionalized sins against chastity be the person heterosexual or homosexual, no?

To make my point, Cardinal Wuerl fires a Catholic who enters a same sex civil union and explains why, which is very Bergolian if you ask me:

From Pope Francis' new book (my comments in bold red):

Church condemns sin, shows mercy to sinner

“The Church condemns sin because it has to relay the truth: ‘this is a sin’. But at the same time, it embraces the sinner who recognizes himself as such, it welcomes him, it speaks to him of the infinite mercy of God. Jesus forgave even those who crucified and scorned him.” (The pope is demanding that the sinner recognize his/her sin! Do Catholics in adulterous relationships that the state has recognized but not the Church recognize themselves as sinners, that they are living in sin?)

“To follow the way of the Lord, the Church is called on to dispense its mercy over all those who recognize themselves as sinners, who assume responsibility for the evil they have committed, and who feel in need of forgiveness. The Church does not exist to condemn people, but to bring about an encounter with the visceral love of God’s mercy.”

“I often say that in order for this to happen, it is necessary to go out: to go out from the churches and the parishes, to go outside and look for people where they live, where they suffer, and where they hope. I like to use the image of a field hospital to describe this “Church that goes forth”. It exists where there is combat. It is not a solid structure with all the equipment where people go to receive treatment for both small and large infirmities. It is a mobile structure that offers first aid and immediate care, so that its soldiers do not die.” (It is not hard to get to my church for daily confession, but should parishes rent spaces for small devotional chapels with confessionals in heavily shopped malls/shopping centers and regularly have confessions available at peak shopping times?)

“It is a place for urgent care, not a place to see a specialist. I hope that the Jubilee [The Holy Year of Mercy] will serve to reveal the Church’s deeply maternal and merciful side, a Church that goes forth toward those who are “wounded,” who are in need of an attentive ear, understanding, forgiveness, and love.”

Mercy yes, corruption no (This strikes me as a classical, post Vatican II understanding that mortal sin that condemns a person here and in the hereafter in hell, is a lifestyle in direct opposition to the love and law of God, a truly corrupt person who prefers his sin to his God and Church, who prefers lies to truth and justifies his lifestyle of lies and sin and call these "good." This is of course blasphemy of the Holy Spirit and thus unforgivable. )

Pope Francis goes on to point out the difference between sin and corruption, saying the corrupt man lacks the humility to recognize his sins.

“Corruption is the sin which, rather than being recognized as such and rendering us humble, is elevated to a system; it becomes a mental habit, a way of living. We no longer feel the need for forgiveness and mercy, but we justify ourselves and our behaviors.”

“Jesus says to his disciples: even if your brother offends you seven times a day, and seven times a day he returns to you to ask for forgiveness, forgive him. The repentant sinner, who sins again and again because of his weakness, will find forgiveness if he acknowledges his need for mercy. The corrupt man is the one who sins but does not repent, who sins and pretends to be Christian, and it is this double life that is scandalous.”

“The corrupt man does not know humility, he does not consider himself in need of help, he leads a double life. (Is not the person who is in a Church recognized Sacrament of Marriage, but civilly divorced and married again in a civil marriage not recognized by Holy Mother Church living a double life????) We must not accept the state of corruption as if it were just another sin. Even though corruption is often identified with sin, in fact they are two distinct realities, albeit interconnected.”

“Sin, especially if repeated, can lead to corruption, not quantitatively — in the sense that a certain number of sins makes a person corrupt — but rather qualitatively: habits are formed that limit one’s capacity for love and create a false sense of self-sufficiency.”

“The corrupt man tires of asking for forgiveness and ends up believing that he doesn’t need to ask for it any more. We don’t become corrupt people overnight. It is a long, slippery slope that cannot be identified simply as a series of sins. One may be a great sinner and never fall into corruption if hearts feel their own weakness. That small opening allows the strength of God to enter.”

“When a sinner recognizes himself as such, he admits in some way that what he was attached to, or clings to, is false. The corrupt man hides what he considers his true treasure, but which really makes him a slave and masks his vice with good manners, always managing to keep up appearances.”

And Now what Cardinal Wuerl has written concerning the same thing and the condemnation of a corrupt sinner!!!!!

Recently you may have heard stories in the news about how the employment of a person in public ministry at a local parish was no longer possible when he indicated that he would continue to openly live in contradiction to what the Church proclaims as true, specifically a civil “same-sex marriage.” Since mercy is at the heart of our Catholic faith, this outcome is unfortunate and I would like here to discuss the principles involved in this and other similar situations.

First, any person who struggles in trying to live according to the revealed truth of Catholic teaching should know the Church recognizes his or her dignity as created by God and that the person need not face life’s challenges apart from the grace of the Lord and his Church, which seeks only the highest good for everyone.

The Church recognizes that we all need to grow in faith and in closeness to the Lord. Simply acting contrary to Church teaching on occasion would not preclude serving as a ministerial employee or volunteer. For us to acknowledge that we are sinners, as we do, is to admit that occasionally we too have at times not lived up to the truth. On those occasions, we are expected to acknowledge our failings and seek to amend our lives in Christ.

However, if one persists or effectively insists that they are right and the Church is wrong, in the face of such irreconcilable differences it is not discrimination or punishment to say that continued ministerial service is not possible. It is not a question of personal private activity, but the social consequences of conduct which undermines the Church’s ability to fulfill her mission. When there is the potential for scandal that might lead people astray regarding the Catholic faith, continued service becomes untenable.

The purpose of our parishes, schools, ministries and other Catholic entities – “and the task of those who work for them – is to lead people to Jesus,” as I wrote last spring in my pastoral letter Being Catholic Today: Catholic Identity in an Age of Challenge (13). That purpose and task is challenged by a secular culture that is in contradiction to traditional concepts of marriage, family, the common good and objective right and wrong.

“Those who agree to assist the Church in her mission and ministries represent the public face of the Church,” and thus they have a special responsibility to “respect our Catholic identity and avoid behavior that contradicts the very mission of the Catholic institution” (14). The Catholic faithful, and the other people that our ministries serve, have a right to the Gospel and to receive authentic Church teaching (Redemptoris Missio, 44; Evangelii Gaudium, 14). Conversely, people are denied that right, and our mission and Catholic identity can be compromised “either through explicit dissent, miscatechesis or personal conduct that tends to draw people away from the communion of the Church” (Being Catholic Today, 22). “When people are faithful and give good witness, they lead people to Christ. But when we give bad witness, we can lead people away from Christ” (16).

“We all are at the service of the mission of Christ,” and particularly for those in ministerial positions, “no one can claim a right simultaneously to work for the Church and to work against her belief” (23). When a person involved in ministerial activity offers a counter-witness to Catholic teaching by words or public conduct, however earnest they may be, experience shows that it can lead people away from the truth and otherwise have an adverse effect on our mission. The Church not only must be free to then take corrective steps, it has an obligation in charity and truth to do so.

In this, the Church claims no special privilege. Every entity, religious or secular, has the right to its own identity, mission and message, including the freedom of association to retain only people who will faithfully serve those interests and not act in ways that prejudice what the entity stands for. It is not unusual for companies to part ways with employees who do something in their personal lives that puts the companies in an unfavorable light. And no official would ever continue to employ someone who in his off-hours publicly demonstrated that he was opposed to the official’s policies or campaigned for the official’s opponent.

Beyond these common freedoms, the Church also enjoys freedom of religion to decide who will carry out Catholic ministry. This includes the right to determine when conduct is otherwise adverse to the Church’s ability to fully pursue its mission and interests.

The Church we serve is not ours, but Christ’s. The greatest mercy of the Church is to be faithful witnesses of his truth and love. It is precisely through the witness of authentic Catholic teaching, which is the revealed truth of the Gospel, that the parishioners in the pews, the young people in our schools, the people served in our charitable ministries, and the world at large will find salvation.


Jusadbellum said...

Cardinal Wuerl wrote that?


I mean, that's clear, concise, and to the point. It makes essential distinctions and defines terms. It draws parallels to other groups' rights to show how it's not special pleading just for Catholics.

And the way he defines things makes it well nigh impossible to really protest his policy without creating an impossible double standard. Will Planned Parenthood or the DNC hire and keep a moonlighting pro-lifer or a moonlighting Tear Partier? Would Ford hire and keep someone who promoted GM products publicly?

It's a really refreshingly clear piece of writing, that and improved my opinion of the Cardinal considerably (not that that matters any).

Dan said...

" Since mercy is at the heart of our Catholic faith, this outcome is unfortunate and I would like here to discuss the principles involved in this and other similar situations." If the outcome is unfortunate then why spend the rest of the article defending the outcome, which amounted to your saying, that the outcome was in the end--fortunate? I am thankful Car. Wuhrl acted as he did. But when he and other bishops permit Catholic politicians who support abortion and same sex marriages to receive communion, then they violate all the "principles involved in this and other situations." And this is a very great scandal, and sends a very clear message that the Church doesn't really believe the Eucharist is what She says it is, or that the Church itself is what she claims it is.

Anonymous said...

I think Francis has noticed that his popularity is slipping big time, at least with practicing Catholics, and he's trying to save face

My dad used to have a phrase he would use, and I think it describes Francis perfectly: "If you try to be everything to everyone, then you're nobody to no one."

There are rumors flying around that Francis plans on announcing his retirement when he gets to Argentina in July. Let us hope so, so that the constant scandal will end. I just fear who will take his place

John Nolan said...

I'm a bit worried by all of this. Francis invents labels for people whose conduct he deprecates (neo-Pelagian being a good example) and then re-defines words to suit. We are all corrupt, its being a result of man's fallen state. We are also inclined to sin and prone to justifying ourselves.

If you are going to waffle on in a language (Spanish and Italian are the only ones this Pope has any fluency in) where words have a different nuance when translated, it helps if your definitions are backed up with concrete examples. But Francis never does this, leaving his listeners to decide whether he is having a go at traditionalists or progressives. Jesuits were once renowned for their intellectual rigour; this one makes a virtue of ambiguity.

There are still large parts of Evangelii Gaudium which cry out for some explanation. It's hardly surprising that there is still no definitive Latin text. When this pontificate is over few people are going to bother sifting through the verbiage of interviews, favorini, off-the-cuff remarks to journalists, lengthy treatises on the environment, collected homilies and the rest in the hope of finding anything of substance. In short, Pope Francis is becoming a monumental bore.

Marc said...

For all of you living in the Savannah Diocese, I hope you will pay attention to this message from Una Voce of Georgia and write to your bishop:

Savannah Faithful Petition the FSSP to Come to the Diocese.

Wherever you are in the diocese, this is of importance to you. Please make this petition well-known amongst all the faithful. As one who has left the Diocese of Savannah and, eventually moved across the country, in order to be able to attend an FSSP parish, I cannot tell you the spiritual benefits that come from attending a traditional parish with traditional priests adhering to the traditional devotions offered by the Church. Since getting to heaven and getting your family to heaven are the purpose of life, THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING THAT YOU CAN DO for yourself and for your family. Please take a few minutes to write to your bishop, and pray that he sees fit to bring the traditional Catholic parish life to your diocese.

Anonymous said...

Too little too late. The die is cast.

Marc, have posted your petition on my Facebook page and we are hoping they will come here too. The FSSP is under great pressure to supply priests everywhere.

Jacob said...

It is important to note that the FSSP is willing to send two priests to the Savannah Diocese in a few months (this summer), all they need is approval from the Bishop. Just think what a help this is with the priest shortage. Please write a note to the Bishop. A personal parish means that you can be a member of the parish no matter where you live in the Diocese.