Tuesday, October 13, 2015


It would behoove the leadership of the synod, up to and including Pope Francis, to try to lance this boil before it festers.--John Allen of Crux
Under Pope Francis I've come to despise synods. I see no purpose in the bishops of the Catholic Church at each others throats trying to score points about this, that or the other. It is down right depressing .

Under Pope Francis one wonders if these synods are a colossal waste of time and energy for the bishops themselves, the reporters who have to cover the controlled information (they are actually simply covering the news conferences) and rank and file clergy and laity that expect the Catholic Church to remain the Catholic Church and not morph into something unrecognizable or too similar to liberal Protestantism.

We are seeing a schism between doctrine and pastoral practice and codifying pastoral practice as though it is doctrine. It isn't.

The only ray of hope is that most laity are oblivious to what is happening in Rome. At the core of the divisiveness or polarization is the one who has exacerbated the already existing polarization that existed before he walked out on that loggia that faithful night, none other than Pope Francis aka Jorge Bergolio.

Another conservative commentator has called it "embarrassing."

What we are seeing at this synod is what we have seen with the Second Vatican Council which was and is billed as a "pastoral council." The spirit of Vatican II elevated pastoral theology to infallibly defined dogma. Pastoral theology isn't dogma and it can't be defined in an infallible way.

At this synod, we are seeing once again how divisive pastoral theology can be when it is elevated to dogma and unintegrated into the teachings of Jesus Christ and His holy dogmas, doctrines and what some would call "small minded rules." Schizophrenia reigns.

Archbishop Charles Chaput hits the nail on the head and boldly speaks in a respectful way the crisis of this synod which is the crisis of the Church in general today. Will Pope Francis continue to exacerbate this crisis or take Archbishop Chaput's advice and speak clearly and in continuity with what the Church teaches? The pope, friends, is an absolute monarch. Conservatives love this about the pope when His Holiness is clear and orthodox. When orthodoxy is called into question, one fears the worse, schism.


Archbishop Charles Chaput of Philadelphia spoke to the synod fathers on Saturday on the importance of precision in language, particularly regarding unity in diversity, and recalled the Protestant Reformation.

“Imprecise language leads to confused thinking,” the archbishop said Oct. 10 at the Vatican, giving “two examples that should cause us some concern”: 'inclusive' and 'unity in diversity'.

Regarding the oft-used expression “unity in diversity”, he noted that “we need to honor the many differences in personality and culture that exist among the faithful. But we live in a time of intense global change, confusion and unrest.  Our most urgent need is unity, and our greatest danger is fragmentation.”“Brothers, we need to be very cautious in devolving important disciplinary and doctrinal issues to national and regional episcopal conferences – especially when pressure in that direction is accompanied by an implicit spirit of self-assertion and resistance.”

Then he referred to Erasmus, a priest of the early 16th century who called for reform in the Church, yet who opposed Martin Luther's Protestant Reformation.

“Five hundred years ago, at a moment very like our own, Erasmus of Rotterdam wrote that the unity of the Church is the single most important of her attributes,” Archbishop Chaput said. “We can argue about what Erasmus actually believed, and what he intended with his writing.”

“But we can’t argue about the consequences when the need for Church unity was ignored.   In the coming days of our synod, we might fruitfully remember the importance of our unity, what that unity requires, and what disunity on matters of substance implies.”

Please find below the full text of Archbishop Chaput's Oct. 10 intervention, “Language and its Implications”, at the Synod on the Family:


The Holy Father has wisely encouraged us to be both fraternal and candid in speaking our thoughts during this synod. 

Just as our thoughts shape the language we use, so too the language we use shapes our thinking and the content of our discussions. Imprecise language leads to confused thinking, and that can sometimes lead to unhappy results. I want to share with you two examples that should cause us some concern, at least in the English-speaking world.

The first example is the word inclusive. We’ve heard many times that the Church should be inclusive. And if by “inclusive” we mean a Church that is patient and humble, merciful and welcoming – then all of us here will agree. But it’s very hard to include those who do not wish to be included, or insist on being included on their own terms. To put it another way: I can invite someone into my home, and I can make my home as warm and hospitable as possible. But the person outside my door must still choose to enter. If I rebuild my house to the blueprint of the visitor or stranger, my family will bear the cost, and my home will no longer be their home. The lesson is simple. We need to be a welcoming Church that offers refuge to anyone honestly seeking God. But we need to remain a Church committed to the Word of God, faithful to the wisdom of the Christian tradition, and preaching the truth of Jesus Christ.

The second example is the expression unity in diversity. The Church is “catholic” or universal. We need to honor the many differences in personality and culture that exist among the faithful. But we live in a time of intense global change, confusion and unrest. Our most urgent need is unity, and our greatest danger is fragmentation. Brothers, we need to be very cautious in devolving important disciplinary and doctrinal issues to national and regional episcopal conferences – especially when pressure in that direction is accompanied by an implicit spirit of self-assertion and resistance.
Five hundred years ago, at a moment very like our own, Erasmus of Rotterdam wrote that the unity of the Church is the single most important of her attributes. We can argue about what Erasmus actually believed, and what he intended with his writing. But we can’t argue about the consequences when the need for Church unity was ignored.   In the coming days of our synod, we might fruitfully remember the importance of our unity, what that unity requires, and what disunity on matters of substance implies.

This is AP's take on it all:
VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis' divisive meeting on family issues took another controversial twist Monday with revelations that several conservative cardinals wrote to the pontiff expressing serious concerns about "predetermined results" coming out of the meeting — only to have doubts arise over both the content of their letter and the cardinals responsible.

Veteran Vatican journalist Sandro Magister published the letter Monday morning on his L'Espresso blog and listed 13 cardinals who purportedly signed it. He said one of the 13, the Vatican's Australian financial manager, Cardinal George Pell, hand-delivered it to Francis on Oct. 5 at the start of the three-week meeting on crafting better pastoral care for Catholic families.

The letter, written in English, complained that the meeting lacked openness, that the drafting committee for the final document was appointed by the pope, not elected by the synod's 270 members, and that the overall process "seems designed to facilitate predetermined results on important disputed questions."

By Monday afternoon, at least four of the 13 purported signatories said they had never signed such a letter. Pell's spokesman seemed to confirm he was behind the initiative by saying the letter was private and was supposed to stay private.

The statement said there were "errors" in both the content and the number of signatories reported by Magister, suggesting that Pell indeed had been responsible but that the version that Magister published wasn't the final one or the one that other cardinals had agreed to.

Pell has been at the forefront of the conservative resistance to attempts by liberals at the synod to find wiggle room in the church's ban on giving Communion to Catholics remarried outside the church. Catholic teaching holds that without an annulment, these Catholics are committing adultery and cannot receive the sacraments.

Pell had raised concerns on the eve of the synod about a host of issues covered in the letter, including the Communion ban and the potential for a "skewed" final report based on who was named to the drafting committee. In the end, the committee was appointed by Francis, not elected as Pell had wanted.

Francis appeared to address the concerns in the letter on the second day of the synod by delivering an impromptu speech, which the Vatican has yet to make public. According to a summary provided by the Vatican spokesman, Francis assured the bishops that Catholic teaching on marriage hadn't been touched, that the synod was not only dealing with the Communion issue and that the working groups offering amendments to the drafting committee were of "essential importance."

However, in a quote reported by a synod participant and subsequently confirmed by the Vatican, Francis also warned bishops against falling into a "conspiracy" mindset — suggesting that he found the level of alarm in Pell's letter a bit over the top...

(I will moderate comments very closely and not print disrespectful comments, so don't waste your time writing negative, disrespectful comments).


James said...

The problem with synods is that they force out into the open all the differences that, in the normal course of things, don't really come to the surface. Does Joe Catholic in Macon really care if the values and practices of the church in Nairobi, or Munich, or for that matter New York are identical to those he or she upholds? No, and I doubt Joe Bishop does either. These tensions only come to a head when one or other side emphasises these discrepancies, or feels that their own particular values and practices are under threat. It's hard to think of a better way to sow division and resentment than a synod, particularly one with a vague brief and constantly shifting procedures.

Anonymous said...

Father, it's very sad and pathetic that you must place a warning about disrespectful comments on the blog of a Catholic priest. I understand, however, why you have to do it. Some of the comments regarding our Holy Father on this blog have been down right disgusting.

Clyde Catholoic said...

It does not matter the outcome; the Synod has already done its has put "issues" on the table and allowed discussion of formerly unquestioned doctrines. The concept of "practice" over principle is now firmly established in the minds of liberal Bishops and Priests, and the foundations have been shaken enough to allow progressivism to exploit the cracks in the doctrinal wall. The Pope can now make the most orthodox sounding declarations he pleases without fear that these will alter the course of the humanistic/liberal reformation of Catholicism. It is all just a dog and pony show to distract us from what is really going on.

Anonymous said...

AB Chaput speaks with clarity and concern over a Synod that is rapidly turning into an instrument of disunity. Pope Francis ascended the chair of Peter as a self-confessed agent of the present mess, urged others to go out and make a mess also. Now he has and what he wanted. It is not what the Church needs.

At this point the aims and conduct of the Synod hit a dead end. The Synod's aims were mainstream adultery and the active gay life-style. Pope Francis should consider resigning to give a new Holy Father a chance to unite us by continuing Benedict XVI's reform of the reform.

Anonymous said...

I think this Synod has achieved exactly what it set out to do and that was to endeavour to liberalise Catholic doctrine. While it is unlikely to achieve that liberals have indeed won the day because public perception is now that the Church is liberal on divorce and homosexuality. The photos of Pope Francis embracing a gay couple will only have served to endorse the view, in the minds of Catholics and the public at large, that the Catholic Church is now liberal and embraces such a lifestyle.

The outcome of the synod no doubt will be that the Church will bumble along with liberals admitting public sinners to communion and confused Catholics until such a time as a Pope is elected who will re-state Catholic doctrine. Because that is now absolutely necessary. Only those in the Church who uphold Catholic doctrine truly know what the Church teaches and uphold it. The rest have been duped. I am noticing more and more priests who have hitherto said nothing are now scurrying to tell their flock that divorced Catholics cannot be admitted to Communion. The penny has finally dropped that we are in a mess but it's a bit late to do anything about it now. The neo-cons have - as at Vatican II been found wanting - they should have spoken out long ago and not left it solely to Cardinal Burke, Bishop Athanasius Schneider and a handful of lay blogs.

I think we are all totally sick of seeing almost day by day the Catholic Church being undermined. Am I allowed to say "I told you so"?


Anonymous said...

Last year I wrote on this blog that what will happen is actually happening. You Father called it nonsense and said the annulment procedures would be reformed. And last week you referred to the synod as "glorious".!

We have a papal spokesman running wild publicly promoting his own personal agenda as defied pronouncements. And who is allowing him to cause confusion. Francis.

All of this is the responsibility of Francis. He REFUSES to publicly and clearly and without ambiguity,to teach the Catholic Faith. I am. Sick and tired of hearing the Jesuit excuse. If this is how Jesuits act the the entire order needs to be dissolved,forever this time.

When bishops and cardinals are silence by the Vatican for upholding Church doctrine nobody on this earth is going to convince me that it isn't the work of the Devil. It is crystal clear what is going on. Francis is determined to change the Holy Catholic Faith into Protestantism. That's not a question any more. No more benefit of the doubt. No more respecting him because he holds a title who's validity is in question anyway. As faithful Catholics are we loyalty a mortal human being who wears a cheap see through cassock or to the Our Lord Jesus Christ. Christ NEVER said for the apostles to speak gently so people won't be offended . Rather He said speak the TRUTH and if people don't want to hear it shake the dust from your sandals and go to the next town but speak the TRUTH. Francis CANNOT TEACH THAT ADULTERY CAN BE TOLORATED. He isn't God. And any bishop or priest who goes along with the evil coming out of that synod will be judged accordingly.

Anonymous said...

I have some basic questions if anyone care to answer.

Who said you shall NOT commit adultery.

Who said a man who leaves his wife and marries another commits adultery?

Who in the Gospels said you are forgiven but stop committing this sin?

Who said whoever dares eat the body and drink the blood of the Lord in an unworthy manner commits sin?

Who said that homosexuality is an abomination in the New Testament?

Why was the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah destroyed by God?

Was God not merciful when He rained fire and brimstone upon the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah?

Who made a whip and drove evil men out of the temple?

Who is behind all the confusion at this synod?

Through all of history who has been the author of confusion and deceit?

Anyone have any answers to the above.

Anonymous said...

What Luuca sees as a bug--the open airing of differences--I see as a feature, at leas in this case. For decades, modernists have often claimed unity--unity with each other, unity with the past, etc.* Traditionalists have been critical of this. What we need, if the Church is to be cleansed, is evidence of rupture--with each other and with the past--so open and obvious that nobody can credibly claim that this rupture doesn't exist. This synod appears to be headed in that direction.

*Footnote: Regarding claims of unity, this pl;ays into recent discussions on this blog of liberal fascism (I use this word as a term of art to describe a mindset and a process/tactic, not a disrespectul bit of mud to sling.) Le collectivist Left pays great lip service to unity, consensus, a place at the table, diversity, etc., but when those who disagree insist on airing differing views, Leftists then censor such comments--potestas, not autoritas. Sometimes they're even shocked that other views exist. I've seen it many, many times and been a victim of it more than once.

Vox Cantoris said...

If the Pope is going to make all the decisions, as Fr. Lombardi indicates, then what is the point? To provide cover? This Synod is a sham, a disgrace - small groups, secret meetings, no communication except filtered through a certain perspective.

It is a disgrace upon the Church and the papacy.

The mask is falling.

John Nolan said...

I think it will be make or break time for this pontificate. In the 1960s few knew about the machinations that went on at the Second Vatican Council. I was teenager at the time and interested in other things, but when the documents were released they were taken seriously and were discussed at parish level. The hi-jacking of the Council by the Modernists, the tergiversations of a liberal and badly-advised pope, the destruction of a liturgy which had developed over two millennia, did not hit home until later. In fact, the true story of Vatican II is only just emerging and is even worse than anyone could have imagined.

Pope Francis's reputation suffered as a result of the 2014 Synod. He might have learned some lessons, but still seems intent on trying to manipulate the Synod to get the result he wants. Cardinal Erdo is the Relator of the Synod but was brushed aside when he questioned some of its procedures. We are still in the dark as to whether there will be a final report or not. In any case, the Exhortation which will emerge in due course will be what Francis wants, irrespective of what the bishops say.

Last year I took a perverse pleasure in the High Renaissance goings-on; Baldisseri furtively passing notes to Francis and the latter appearing nonplussed at the fact that his best-laid schemes were being challenged. This year I couldn't care less. I could probably write the comments that Cardinal Nichols (Fudgemaster General) will make to the BBC. The whole thing is a non-event but the difference is that everything about it is published on the internet. (It does take a certain amount of discernment to filter out the facts from the opinions, but as an historian I can do this).

I have the Mass (the authentic one). I have the Sacraments. I have the opinions of like-minded people, some of whom are known only to me on this blog, and whose comments are important to me. It's not my fault that I was born a century too late; I could have missed all this nonsense and made a career in the Colonial service genuinely helping others.

Marc said...

The pope is not necessarily an absolute monarch. He is bound by the Church's tradition, which he cannot change. The greatest danger that we are seeing is the wholesale acceptance that the practice can change independently of the doctrine. If that error persists, then that will be a great victory for the forces of satan against the Church. As mentioned by other commenters, the divorce of doctrine and practice sets the stage for the further changes even if they aren't successfully accomplished in the short term.

As I have repeatedly said in these comments, this is the Hegelian method of progressivism in action. There was a status quo (divorced and remarried cannot receive Communion). That status quo was interrupted by the creation of a non-existent problem (the divorced and remarried are "alienated" from the Church). The problem is now in need of a synthesis (the divorced and remarried can receive Communion under certain conditions).

This strategy should be rather plain to anyone with a basic understanding of philosophy, especially modern philosophies related to liberal political ideology.

Jacob said...

Rorate Caeli has done an outstanding job covering the synod. It just broke the news of the shadow synod taking place at Santa Marta with the Pope and some of the synod cardinals and how they change the rules by the hour. This is a bombshell. Father Z nailed what is going on when he showed how the synod leaders are using the "Delphi Technique" to rig the outcome of this meeting

Marc said...

"If the Pope is going to make all the decisions. . . then what is the point?"

In order to make changes, he has to first make it appear that there is a recognized problem in need of change. By having the bishops enter into a heretofore non-existent debate, the problem is created. And problems demand solutions.

Anonymous said...

Damian Thompson of the Spectator is warning that Pope Francis is facing the biggest crisis in his pontificate and even worse than what Pope Benedict faced:

"The cardinals warn the Pope, in diplomatic language, that (a) the synod is being hijacked by liberals obsessed with the narrow issue of giving Communion to divorced and remarried people; (b) going down the route of ‘pastoral flexibility’ could lead to the Catholic Church falling apart in the same way as liberal Protestant denominations; and (c) the synod working papers prepared by the Pope’s allies Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri and Archbishop Bruno Forte are a mess and going down badly with the Synod Fathers.


The seniority of the signatories shows how close the church is to civil war.

"Moreover – and this is very dangerous for Francis – the main point of contention is not the question of whether the church should be give communion to divorce people in second marriages, or whether gay unions should be given some degree of recognition.

This is an argument about the wisdom of calling the synod in the first place, and expresses the suspicion of over 100 Synod Fathers that the organisers are manipulating proceedings by confronting them with working papers and procedures designed to push them in a liberal direction. Others are simply fed up with the amateurish nature of the proceedings and wonder why, after last year’s chaotic preparatory synod, the Pope left the same people in charge. To quote the Australian Archbishop Mark Coleridge, ‘At times our work has seemed more muddled than methodical’.

I’m one of countless commentators who has warned that holding this synod could split the church. Now it’s happening, much faster than any of us anticipated."

In addition, Lifesite News is reporting that a priest covering the synod, Father Nicholas Gregoris, who has been covering the Vatican for 15 years has had his press card revoked because he questioned Archbishop Paul-Andre Durocher: The revocation came after he had challenged an archbishop following the October 6 press conference over comments claiming that allowing Communion for the divorced and remarried is up for debate."

Personally, I am now of the view that a schism would be the best thing for the Church and for souls because we have a Cardinal from my country saying on Facebook that the Church needs to change Her language on homosexuality and say that it is not "intrinsically evil" and that we should respect someone who chooses to live a gay lifestyle. In other words, we have to respect a person's choice to sin ... it's getting way, way, way, way beyond a joke. This is seroius stuff.


TJM said...

The media consists largely of non-believers who hate Christ and His Church. The media's goal is to weaken the Church's influence so the Global Warming Religion can reign supreme!

Jusadbellum said...

There's an old joke that many only John Nolan will appreciate.

It's about 3 Finnish soldiers fighting the Red Army in the 1930's war between the USSR and Finland. Well, the 3 friends were isolated and cut off from their unit and were trudging through the snow until they came to a small hill. They sent the youngest to peek over it to see if any Russians were about. He soon came running back with the news that there were about 300 Russian troops bivouacked in the field below. "300? are you sure? go count them again!" the man returned. Same count. So the other two also went up and counted them. Seeing the small army camped below the other two began to weep. When asked why by their companion one looked up and said... "It'll take us weeks to bury them all".

It's sort of the grim humor one needs before apparently bad news.

Look, bishops and cardinals and the Pope himself all are charged with the same commission given to any of us at the day of our Confirmation. And though theirs is the larger responsibility, whether or not they fulfill it is not much of our business. We are still obligated to follow the Lord where ever His providence leads us and to hold fast to the Gospel and the deposit of faith.

If the Pope himself and a majority of bishops fall....I must keep the faith. If all priests and religious should fall way....I must keep the faith. If all my family members and neighbors and the lion's share of humanity should fall from the faith. I am still duty bound by the Cross of Christ to keep the faith.

As the Psalmist says "a thousand may fall to my left, ten thousand to my right but my trust is in the name of the Lord".

John Nolan, you weren't born a century too late. You were born in this time for this reason.

Gentlemen, lets pray for our Holy Father and the cardinals and bishops. The Holy Spirit we invoke can renew the face of the earth so why not trust Him to renew the faith in hearts and minds?

I'm not Catholic because it's convenient or cool or popular so I give exactly no account to anyone who uses popularity or convenience as some sort of argument.

I'm not Catholic because it'll allow me fame, fortune, or power. Indeed I fully expect that a bloody persecution against Catholics will occur in North America in my lifetime. I'm not running to the Anglicans to save my skin.

Sometimes one must simply spit in the face of the zeitgeist and raise the banner of Catholicism so that the children may find courage. Now is not time for bunkers. Now is the time for bastions and beacons. Let the synod and Rome do whatever they want... but me and my house will be Catholic no matter what. Even if we need to drive for hours to find a valid Mass, said by a priest who still believes the creed, we will.

Pray for our Holy Father and the bishops. The wolves are real and they do want our blood. We'd be fools to think the world, flesh, and devil DON'T want a pogrom, purge, genocide against Catholics. They detest everything we stand for. They fear us more than ISIS or any number of terror groups (whom they probably fund). They fear us for the faith and the power that faith brings to heal the sick and cast out demons and heal this sick world that they call their own.

So whether the hammer drops from within or without, it will fall nevertheless. All I pray for these days is the grace to remain faithful to my baptism, my confirmation, and the deposit of faith rather than apostasize to save my own skin.

Rood Screen said...

I truly doubt that the Holy Ghost will permit this synod to make pronouncements that contradict those of recent synods. But the question does arise: what shall we do if our Holy Mother Church invites unconverted adulterers to receive Holy Communion?

DJR said...

Anonymous said...
Father, it's very sad and pathetic that you must place a warning about disrespectful comments on the blog of a Catholic priest. I understand, however, why you have to do it. Some of the comments regarding our Holy Father on this blog have been down right disgusting.

Some of the Holy Father's comments about others have been downright disgusting as well.

Anonymous said...

Dialogue, I doubt that Holy Mother Church will permit unconverted adulterers to receive Holy Communion but individual bishops may allow it in their diocese. The difficulty is then going to be for priests what do they do if their bishops permits this? Be obedient to the bishop or to Holy Mother Church? I know, for example, priests in my diocese were told not to mention purgatory, the devil or hell because it would upset children. The vast majority have complied but when it comes to giving communion to an adulterer or someone openly living in a sinful relationship if told by their bishop to give them communion I wonder what the priests will do. How will priests get on, for example, if an unrepentant sinner comes to confession, won't repent of their lifestyle and expects the mercy of the Church to grant absolution? No absolution of course but that could result in a complaint to the bishop and censure for the priest in this new age of "mercy" if his bishop permits communion for adulterers etc.

This synod is going to have very serious ramifications that have been warned of. It is a great pity that there have not been enough voices speaking out. That's my firm opinion. Too late to wait until the synod, which as we're seeing is opening a can of worms, to now speak out and think we're likely to be heard. We have the example of Cardinal Pell who spoke out only to be told, more or less, that he is engaging in conspiracy theories. It is interesting to see that Cardinal Dolan, weak and all as he appears at times, signed the letter to Pope Francis. Cardinal Pell and others are certainly on the wrong side of this as the Pope certainly is not supporting them.

It seems to me, far from being a conspiracy theory, the St Galan group is alive and well and firmly in charge of the synod.


rcg said...

Could it be that marriage is so widely misunderstood, even by many clergy, that we are keeping people from the main communion of the Church by mere legalism? Could it be that a great number of marriages are invalid because the people did not understand what they were doing? So the path back to communion is there if the people can understand and confess their mistake as an internal correction and not a legal trick. I think this is very plausible.

The key in this synod is that the clergy must also confess their role in this and allowing too many marriages in the Church. Could that be the goal of Francis' maneuvers since it is unlikely the bishops would admit their part in this?

Anonymous said...

I think this is a wonderful Pope. He is challenging us to dump our comfortable reliance upon the truth of doctrine and our simple-minded beliefs in the articles of the Creed and embrace the real world of doubt, confusion, and anxiety. This will challenge us to embrace the existential realities of nothingness and meaninglessness and find our hope in living authentically in the abyss of unmeaning. We should come to view Jesus as one who, having accepted the realities of meaninglessness, chose to live "in good faith," as Sartre said. Jesus' death on the cross is a symbol of authenticity, being true to oneself even unto death. Wow, what a great example to follow as we seek to find in our lives where kerygma and myth intersect at the nexus of human encounter. This Pope is just a philosophical genius. All of his actions are aimed at breaking this existential news to us gently so we can become useful members of a humanized church, abandoning brittle ideology for the reality of working toward a collective better world. What a subtle genius. I am completely awed by the Pope's insight and authenticity. Who could say anything at all negative about him? The dogs, the scum, the two-bit traditionalists, mired in primitive worship and belief who presume to question this wonderful man. May the lice of a thousand camels seek refuge in their pants.

Jusadbellum said...

No one is denied communion right now! No one is turned away right now! There are no Inquistitorial Communion Police taking names and checking them against a master file of good members vs. bad members....

What we're dealing with is not millions of people languishing in the pews unable to approach the altar. Every Mass the world over sees the vast majority rise to shuffle forward for communion. So the question is not over who "gets" to communion but the principle for guidance of consciences over whether they OUGHT to be so flippant with their reception of the Lord.

If the official doctrine is that no one - aware of a mortal sin - ought to approach the altar except he first make a perfect act of contrition - then we can see the status quo continue. One presumes that a perfect act of contrition includes the sincere decision to avoid sin in the future.

But if we say, "naw, anyone may licitly and validly and with spiritual benefit commune with the body and blood of Our Lord whether or not they are aware of mortal sin in their soul and whether or not they have sincere desires to avoid it in the future...." what are we saying about our belief in the Lord and sin? That sin doesn't matter?

How doesn't this make us "faith alone" Protestants? If Jesus doesn't care about our friendship and loyalty with him...if he so loves us he just wants us to be smug in our sins and comfort us in our blindness and willfulness, placating our consciences with soft murmurs of encouragement to continue rebelling against God and man for our ego's sake....what point would the New Testament, the "Good News" have?

Of what benefit all the acts of piety, avoiding occasions of sin and seeking occasions of grace, if ultimately the confirmed adulterer is welcomed to the communion not de facto but de-juris?

This isn't about peoples' precious FEELINGS. It's about the objective state of their communion with God as God vs. their turning God into one more idol for their control for ego-centric ends.

rcg said...

Jusad is spot on. We want to make choices and not use rational thought to make them. We plot our sins with plausible deniability built in and think we are fooling or own creator through whom we are continuously made. The fact that Christ cried for us as he died instead of laughing proves he is Love incarnate. We are fools.

Ciprian Jurma said...

Seeing is believing. Had I not have seen Anonymous' comment above, I would have never believed there could actually be a Catholic out there who sincerely thinks we live in "an abyss of unmeaning" and we have to find our own sense to live for in the meaningless world. A Catholic who quotes Sartre, not Christ. We live in truly schizophrenic times.