Saturday, February 23, 2013


MY COMMENTS FIRST: Progressives in the Church actually hate the institutional Church; they hate the Catholic Church as she was, is and will be. They really want a "post-Catholic Church" similar to "post-Christianity" that is anything but Catholic and much more radical than even the Protestant Episcopal Church in the USA.

Ultra progressive and former theologian and Catholic in name only, Hans Kung, shows the ugly, uncharitable characteristics of most progressive Catholics, but he also shows some common sense in the interviews below. His last answer below I actually think is on target and perhaps a valid evaluation and criticism of our out-going Holy Father.

SPIEGEL ONLINE 2013Interview With Swiss Theologian: 'Benedict XVI Could Turn into a Shadow Pope'

By Peter Wensierski

Progressive Catholic theologian Hans Küng, whose authority to teach Catholic theology was rescinded by the Vatican in 1979, spoke to SPIEGEL about the challenges facing the next pope and the need for reform of the Catholic Church.

SPIEGEL: What will change now that Pope Benedict XVI has resigned?

Hans Küng: There is now a realization that a pope should step down when the time has come. Joseph Ratzinger made it very clear that he could no longer fulfill his duties. His predecessor felt he had to turn his death into a show. Fortunately, Benedict chose another way, in order to demonstrate that when a pope is no longer capable of doing his job, he should give it up. This is exactly how the office should be approached. In John Paul II's final years, we weren't led by a pope so much as by a curia, which governed the Church in his place.

SPIEGEL: Who would you like to see lead your Church as pope?

Hans Küng: A pope who is not intellectually stuck in the Middle Ages, one who does not represent mediaeval theology, liturgy and religious order. I would like to see a pope who is open first to suggestions for reform and secondly, to the modern age. We need a pope who not only preaches freedom of the Church around the world but also supports, with his words and deeds, freedom and human rights within the Church -- of theologians, women and all Catholics who want to speak the truth about the state of the Church and are calling for change.

SPIEGEL: Who is your ideal candidate for the office of pope?

Hans Küng: If I were to name anyone, he would most certainly not get elected. But background should not play a role. The best man for the job should be elected. There are no more candidates who belonged to the Second Vatican Council. In the running are candidates who are middle of the road and toe the Vatican line. Is there anyone who won't simply continue on the same path? Is there anyone who understands the depth of the Church's crisis and can see a way out? If we elect a leader who continues on the same path, the Church's crisis will become almost intractable.

SPIEGEL: Is there likely to be friction between the former pope and the incumbent pope?

Hans Küng: Benedict XVI could turn into a shadow pope who has stepped down but can still exert indirect influence. He has already assigned himself a place within the Vatican. He is keeping his secretary, who will also remain prefect of the papal household under the new pope. This is a new form of nepotism, and one that isn't appreciated in the Vatican either. No priest likes to have his predecessor looking over his shoulder. Even the bishop of Rome doesn't find it pleasant to have his predecessor constantly keeping an eye on him.

SPIEGEL: So the new pope will have a hard time asserting himself?

Hans Küng: If the next pope is clever, he will appoint a cabinet that will allow him to lead effectively. A solitary pope, isolated from the curia the way that Ratzinger was, will not be able to lead a community of 1.2 billion people. The pope urgently needs a cabinet made up of new, competent men (and why not women, too) in order to overcome the crisis. Unless there is an end to the tradition of the Roman royal household and an introduction of a functioning, central church administration as well as a curia reform, no new pope will be able to bring about change and progress.


Gene said...

I attended lectures by Kung. He is an enemy of the Church, a liberal protestant at heart, and a half-assed theologian, at best. To even suggest that anything he says is worth listening to is sleeping with the enemy. Yeah, I read his stupid books, too. Even the Devil can speak the name of Christ...

Kitchener Waterloo Traditional Catholic said...

Respectfully, Fr McDonald, I wish people would stop referring to Hans Kung - he's irrelevant. His opinions matter as much as those of any other anti-Catholic.

rcg said...

Rhymes with 'Pass'.

Anonymous said...

But Hans Kung is Pater Ignotus' true God-hero.

Fun D. Mentalist said...

Can anyone find a photo of Fr. Kung taken after Vatican II that shows him dressed in clerical garb? I think he wears those awful ties just to annoy everyone.

Pater Ignotus said...

Anon 10:14 - No, he's not my hero. Unlike Pin/Gene, I have NEVER read Kung.....

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

PI I wish I could say the same!

Gene said...

So, then, Ignotus/Kavanaugh, you arrived at all your Modernist/liberal beliefs without Kung's help...marvelous. LOL!

Pater Ignotus said...

Pin/Gene - No, I have no "modernist" beliefs. My beliefs are all Catholic.

Unknown said...

I can't believe that I'm about to do this, but I think that I actually can support Fr. Kavanaugh on this one.

One does not need to have read Kung in order to be a flaming liberal. One can stick with John Paul II's TOB, his views including, but not limited to phenomenology and neo-Thomistic drivel and be quite liberal.

I would probably say that it's safe that Fr. Kavanaugh isn't exposed to Kung's works at all. He just isn't polished enough to have that level of liberal leaning. His brand is way too amateurish, ala John Paul II.

Pater Ignotus said...

Andy - All of us here, yourself included, are amateurs. But we come with a wide variety of personal, academic, and pastoral backgrounds. I am not a professional theologian and never will be one. Neither are you, so I take your evaluation with a very large grain of salt.

That I am not a professional theologian doesn't mean that I don't know what the Church teaches. And, sometimes more importantly, I also know what the Church doesn't teach.

I am a pastor, which means that I am given the responsibility of teaching the doctrine which I have received to the people I am called to serve. That is what I have done - consistently.

No, I do not have the "level of learning" of a Kung or a Komonchak, a Grisez or a Satterfield (two of my seminary profs). Neither do I have the unmitigated gall to complain that Pope John Paul II was amateurish.

Be that as it may, I know whereof I speak, and will continue to do so.

Unknown said...

Actually, Fr. Kavanaugh, you are. A professional theologian, that is.


Unknown said...

O how Kung and those like him love to use the word "progress" as though it had some divine meaning!

I've heard the word "progress" so many times at this point that I've become sick of it. As in, when I pass "Progress Street" in downtown Macon, I get the urge to stop my car, step out, and rip the sign straight out of the ground.

Sometimes I think people forget the Church's inflexibility is what protects it from becoming like all other institutions: old and decayed. After all, this inflexibility to its principles is (in my opinion) why Ambrose was able to gain the submission of Theodosius after the Massacre of Thessalonica.

Sadly, those days have been exstinguished by this masquerade to cooperate with civil governments. Civil governments are power-hungry by their very nature, and seem to have embarked on a quest to restore caesaropapism.

Unfortunately, these same Neo-caesaropapists have been able to gain misguided Catholics, many of whom have been tricked by having their sense of good manipulated.

I should probably stop now, before I depress myself anymore.