Saturday, 13 October 2018

Pope Francis seeks to change the Catholic brand

The leaders of the Catholic Church seem to be going the way of Marks and Spencer's - an iconic chain of shops on every high street in England that is abandoning its core customers while vainly chasing after new customers who aren't interested in them.

I always thought it odd that the churches in the West have since 1960 become left-wing when the Church's teaching about sex, divorce, abortion, social hierarchy and hierarchy in marriage never seemed more conservative when contrasted with what is believed in the secular world.

It seems now that even the rock-like Catholic Church will not seem so rock-like if the Pope and his favourite cardinals (those who are not forced to resign) have their way. The intention of the Pope is not to attempt to change timeless doctrine but to move around
it, by for example saying homophobia is more anti-Christian than single-sex marriage (Cardinal Marx said this) or that there is no need to "obsess" about abortion (the Pope said this) when climate change and migrants are big issues too. 

The Pope with astonishing vulgarity said there was no need for the faithful to 'breed like rabbits'.

It is hard to believe that this is happening. The events in the Church mirror what is happening in the world, of course, but the heresy of modernism is the idea that the Church should adapt to the world and not the world to the Church.

The Pope's Youth Synod at Rome fills me with very grave misgiving. 

This article by William Fitzpatrick is well worth reading. It links together very well the policy of the cardinals, including disgraced former Cardinal McCarrick, when faced by Islam and when dealing with homosexuality.

I quote:
...Archbishop Chaput characterized “developed” societies as being “frozen in a kind of moral adolescence; an adolescence which they’ve chosen for themselves and now seek to impose on others.” Much the same could be said
of some of the prominent prelates at the Youth Synod. They seem over-concerned with adolescent wants, and they seem eager to legitimize whatever it is that young people (from whom we have so much to learn) want to be or do. 
'But religion is not a free-flowing, New Age, follow-your-bliss affair. The word “religion” is derived from the Latin “religare”—meaning “to bind fast.” At some point, youth needs to grow up. And growing up in the faith means binding yourself to a set of beliefs and behaviors and, above all, to Christ.

'Even a good many non-religious people understand that growing up means tying yourself down—to your spouse, to your children, and, often, to a 30-year mortgage. It’s not entirely clear, however, that the synod organizers understand this. A main focus of the synod is “vocational discernment,” yet, as Thomas Ascik points out in a review of IL, “the document has nothing to say, recommend, or advocate whatsoever about the prospects, possibilities, or ‘vocational discernment’ of young Catholic women concerning motherhood.”

Here is an article by the Rod Dreher entitled LGBT ideology Abolishes Man. He is one of the best current religious writers. Originally a Methodist, he converted to Catholicism and then became Orthodox partly because of his distaste for child abuse scandals and what he thinks is a homosexual network at the top of the Catholic hierarchy, two things that he thinks are linked. He says interestingly:
In speaking of how men and women of the early Christian era saw their bodies, historian Peter Brown says the body:

was embedded in a cosmic matrix in ways that made its perception of itself profoundly unlike our own. Ultimately, sex was not the expression of inner needs, lodged in the isolated body. Instead, it was seen as the pulsing, through the body, of the same energies as kept the stars alive. Whether this pulse of energy came from benevolent gods or from malevolent demons (as many radical Christians believed) sex could never be seen as a thing for the isolated human body alone.
Here is an article from the Catholic Herald by Matthew Schmitz of the excellent First Things, that is highly critical of what the Pope wants to come out of the Synod.

Here is Steve Bannon explaining how his Catholicism guides his political beliefs, which focus on protecting the interests of the working class, as opposed to what he calls the Davos class. A number of populist politicians including several AfD leaders were or are devout Christians. So are Viktor Orban and Norbert Hofer, the candidate of the Freedom Party who came within a whisker of winning the Austrian presidency. Both he and Orban converted from Catholicism to Protestantism (shades of Mike Pence, I suppose). I wonder if Matteo Salvini, who like Bannon is divorced, goes to Mass. 

Finally and most enjoyably, here is a heart-warming video by a young man whose mother gave him away for adoption, in which he says how grateful he is to her for the gift of life.


  1. He seems to be entirely unaware of the catastrophic histories of abuse surfacing all over the place ...
    These Facts must and should have a huge effect on what we believe and our faith facts are facts ... It may be that child molesters and sadists targeted the Church as a safe house for their proclivities and this the Church itself may be a victim of such fallen natures, and the perpetrators calculations, but if so He should say so...
    I used to believe in the sanctity of all human life everywhere but it’s less easy to do so now... order is sanctity ...
    modesty ... humility.
    I cannot bit feel it sacrilegious to see species made extinct from God's creation after a 1000 million years of evolution ... I find that heretical if not criminal ... the destruction of ecosystems that cannot be replaced will rebound on us it is in religious terms after all Gods Creation we are desecrating... virtuous if not kind behaviour can be observed in other life forms we all share a common intelligence (see Jungle Book 2) for a better illustration of how species relate than David Attenborough...

  2. Yep. Unfortunately, that's pretty much the way it is

  3. Laodicea was a room temperature church neither hot nor cold, it was a church that allowed itself to be influenced by the world around it with the result being that it no longer influenced its environment, but was rather being influenced by its environment. Jesus had nothing good to say about it. The church was ineffective and dead
    The church in Laodicea had locked Jesus outside, yet they were going through all their religious services.
    They had locked him outside the door of their hearts. A dead church is a church that has a form of religion but has no power within and to the modern Laodicean church of today what a person believes about basic Biblical doctrines regarding Jesus, salvation, the Holy Spirit, eternity, etc. they’re not important as long as everybody gets along and loves everybody else.
    They forget that Jesus once said I did not come to bring peace, but a sword.
    For I came to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a man’s enemies will be the members of his household Jesus does, in fact, divide people. In fact, He is the greatest divider the world has ever known. Very seldom, if ever, do you hear any priest or preacher expound doctrinal texts such as relate to divorce, morality, love of money, hell, etc. These topics are hardly ever mentioned, they are avoided because they “divide people and hurt their feelings”.

    The talk today is let us respect and tolerate each others’ culture. Let us have religious tolerance, don’t say anything that would offend someone else’s tradition and let us all give out a positive self image.

    The psychology of sin from a modern perspective is to make people feel better about themselves.
    The apostate church of Revelation 17 will be very inclusive and ecumenical. It will accept just about anyone as a member — as long as biblical truth is not part of their belief system.
    Even then the mantra will be, “Doctrine divides; love unites”.

  4. I’d be interested to know what Church’s Father or early Christian writer thought sexual desire came from “benevolent gods”.

    I’ve always been scriptical of Dreher, especially since the Orthodox have the same kinda of problems with sexual abuse and corruption that the Catholics have. Just look at the Patrirach of Constantinople, he was Jesuit-trained too.

  5. Paul, very good. Of course, by linking to Chaput you are lashing yourself to the unsinkable mast of the barque that Francis is driving onto the rocks. The other links are most useful too. The thread throughout is that the homosexual ideology is already adopted by many church leaders. Irony: Paul VI, who promulgated Humanae Vitae 50 years ago against the rec. of his experts (periti?), was canonized today in the same ceremony as Oscar Romero. What to make of Francis saying those who seek an abortion are like those who hire hit Men (sicarios)? What to make of Cdl Ouellet reply to ViganĂ² that serves to confirm that restrictions on McCartick were allowed to lapse when Francis arrived? Is Benedict a captive or truly too informed to live outside the Vatican or simply unwilling to plunge the Church into more division? BTW, the parochial vicar in my parish is from Uganda. We go to futbol matches at times. He advised that while there are far too many cases of priests in Africa keeping a concubine, and of some procuring abortions for pregnant ones, at times though rarely, priests in Africa who violate children see their life expectancy shortened to days or weeks, and no one expresses regret about it. Francis seems to believe that homosexuals are the most oppressed and mistreated identity group in the world. To that I can only say that reflects the shallowness if his intellectual abilities. Kyrie eleison .

  6. Judgement and vindication lack mercy and forgiveness.

    Unfortunately, this generation has given speed to the psycHology of self and the poison of a victim mentality.

  7. Some thoughts: 1. These people, including the pope, know exactly what they're doing 2. They don't care about the reactions to their actions because 3. They will forfeit nothing, as they are accountable to no one but themselves.

    So: Fudge the matter, have an 'inquiry', announce 'lessons have been learned' 4 years later. By then, it'll all have blown over. It works in mundane politics.

    Possibly, in another 10 years, pederasty will be normalised in the wider society, so that's another problem for the NuChurch gone. Then anyone with the slighest understanding of Who Christ is and what He wants can either remain in the New Catholic Church or join the trads underground.

  8. Paul, I think you should consider the Priesthood, or possibly the Deaconate. At the very least you should become a lector. Pope Francis’ philosophy and teachings are the most Christlike we have ever had in a Pope.
    - John Boatner