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Vatican conference to promote Mary as ‘model for faith and life for Christianity and Islam’

Does the Vatican really think that this will increase harmony and mutual respect between Muslims and Christians? Vatican top dogs should consider a statement of the Muslim Brotherhood theorist Sayyid Qutb:

“The chasm between Islam and Jahiliyyah [the society of unbelievers] is great, and a bridge is not to be built across it so that the people on the two sides may mix with each other, but only so that the people of Jahiliyyah may come over to Islam.”

Dialogue, in other words, is all too often for the Islamic side a means of dawah, Islamic proselytizing, not a genuine discussion. In the Qur’an, the Virgin Mary gives birth to Jesus, but it is stated that he is not the Son of God (19:35), not divine (5:17), and was not crucified (4:157), and thus could not be and is not the savior and redeemer of the world. Do these Vatican officials really think that their Muslim interlocutors will discard what the Qur’an tells them and move closer to the Christian view? Or are they discarding the Christian view of Mary (and hence of Jesus) themselves, so as not to offend their “dialogue” partners? Almost certainly.

“Leave them; they are blind guides. And if a blind man leads a blind man, both will fall into a pit.” (Matthew 15:14)

“Vatican to organize conference promoting Mary as ‘model for faith’ for both Christianity and Islam,” by Jeanne Smits, LifeSite News, February 16, 2021:

February 16, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — “Mary, a model for faith and life for Christianity and Islam:” is the title of an upcoming series of online webinars presenting Our Lady as a bridge between Catholicism and Islam organized, among others, by the Pontifical Academy of Mary (Pontificia Academia Mariana Internationalis or PAMI).

Starting on February 18, ten weekly conferences will be given jointly by Catholic and Muslim speakers who will seek “dialogue, knowledge and cooperation” regarding themes such as “Mary, a woman of faith,” “God who is love and faith,” prayer, purity, hospitality and non-violence, fasting and penitence, fraternity and citizenship.

The Franciscan pontifical University of Rome, the “Antonianum,” is another co-organizer of the event through its Duns Scot Chair of Mariological Studies as well as the International Islamic-Christian Marian Commission and the Grand Mosque of Rome and its Islamic Cultural Center of Italy.

The Italian weekly Famiglia Christiana presented the event in the light of the Abu Dhabi declaration, illustrating its article on Saturday with a photo of Pope Francis signing the Human Fraternity Document together with Imam al-Tayyeb of the Al-Azhar University of Cairo.

Quoting at length from the Document, Gian Matteo Roggio commented: “The course of these webinars is therefore aimed at active, free, conscious, solidary and popular participation in the opening of this space of intersection, interconnection, hospitable reception, thus meeting the explicit requests of Pope Francis and the Grand Imam of Al-Azahr, the noble Sheikh Ahmad Al-Tayyeb.”

Readers of Famiglia Christiana in Italy are being asked to believe this: “The figure of Mary, a Jewish, Christian and Muslim woman, belongs by right and by fact to the path, the processes and the experiences that contribute to the generation of such an educational path, which makes a positive and confident wager on the embrace between generations and on a new politics and economy, where countries do not need to build their identity on contempt and on systematic negation, whether overt or covert, of the other and of others: an identity, that is, at the expense of the dissimilar and ready to identify in the other the cause of all the ills, failures, limitations and problems that instead have their multiple causes elsewhere. Belonging to these three religious and multi-cultural worlds (Judaism, Christianity, Islam), the figure of Mary is in itself a pressing and constant invitation to intersect and interconnect these same worlds, even making them a model of plural coexistence where the boundaries of each are made to allow communication, passage, exchange; and not to be closed, according to the many figures of exclusion that have, as their fruit, the culture, psychology, politics and economics of war, hatred and inhumanity.”

In the same grandiloquent style, Roggio added: “The webinars will end during the month of Ramadan with ‘the dates of Mary’ in the Conference Hall of the Great Mosque of Rome (health situation permitting): in memory of what is stated in the Holy Quran (Sura 19,22-26), namely that after giving birth near the trunk of a palm tree, she was called by the newborn child who told her ‘Do not be sad […] shake the trunk of the palm tree towards you and it will drop fresh and ripe dates on you. So eat them,’ a meal of friendship and fraternity will be shared once the sun goes down, as a tangible pact of alliance for the service to the common good of all, no one excluded, in obedience to the ‘understanding of the great divine grace that makes all human beings brothers’ (Document on human brotherhood for world peace and common coexistence).”

Roggio, the author of these very pro-Islamic lines, is not simply a journalist, he is a member of the religious order, the Missionaries of Our Lady of La Salette. He studied Mariology at the Pontifical Academy of Mary and is now a professor at the same institution. Roggio will be giving the lecture on “God who is love and mercy” on February 25, together with Islamic theologian Shahrzad Houshmand Zadeh, who teaches at the Gregoriana Pontifical University.

Roggio’s words therefore clearly express the spirit of the coming Islamo-Christian webinars: a spirit of profound relativism and misleading equation between the Catholic faith and Muslim beliefs.

The real question is this one: is the Virgin Mary whom we Catholics honor as the Mother of Jesus, only Son of God and the Word Incarnate, the same person as the woman named “Miriam” by the Quran? Is her son, Îssa, the Quranic equivalent of Jesus? He would then be a “Jesus” who could not in any way be the Son of God, because, the Quran proclaims, such an idea is “something monstrous” and that “it is not fitting for the Most Merciful to have a son.”…

EDITORS NOTE: This Jihad Watch column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

On the Nature of Complicity

Randall Smith: In the future, will America’s bishops renounce their failure to condemn politicians who support abortion as German bishops have recently done for their former support of Nazism?


In a column last year titled “Politicizing the Eucharist?” I pointed out that no one now claims that when Archbishop Rummel of New Orleans excommunicated three Catholics for publically encouraging people to defy his order to de-segregate the Catholic schools, he was “politicizing the Eucharist.”  Rather, Rummel is now praised highly for his singular courage, especially since his condemnation was so contrary to the more “accommodating” views of many of his fellow southern Catholics.

I also mentioned Cardinal Adolf Bertram, the ex-officio head of the German episcopate in the 1930s, who ordered Church bells rung in celebration of Nazi Germany’s victories over Poland and France and who sent greetings to Hitler on his 50th birthday in the name of all German Catholics, an act that angered his fellow bishops Konrad von Preysing and August von Galen.

The subject of whether the bishops should speak out publically against the treatment of the Jews arose at a 1942 meeting of the German bishops at Fulda. The consensus was “to give up heroic action in favor of small successes.”  In the 1933 Reichskonkordat between the Holy See and the German government, Church leaders pledged to refrain from speaking out on issues not directly related to the Church.  Repeated violations of the Konkordat on the part of the government, including closing churches and church schools, did not change their minds. And it also didn’t keep bishops like Bertram from endorsing government actions they favored, such as opposition to communism and the subjugation of Poland.

If you imagine I am being too tough on these German bishops, then perhaps you should read the twenty-three-page report made public last May by Germany’s Council of Catholic Bishops in which they admitted “complicity” by their predecessors who did not do enough to oppose the rise of Nazi regime and its mistreatment of Jews.

In eighty or ninety years, will future U.S. bishops be submitting a similar document of their own, confessing the “complicity” of their predecessors who did not do enough to oppose the abortion regime?  Will Catholics of that time be as baffled about our present bishops and prominent Catholic politicians as we are about the accommodationist Catholics of Nazi Germany?

How could Catholics of that time have failed to understand the evil staring them in the face? And why did they “accommodate” a regime that had labeled Christianity, and Catholics in particular, as “enemies of the state”?  Was it perhaps because so many leaders of the regime had been raised Catholic and some were still rosary-carrying church-goers?

Who, in retrospect, would not look back in shame at a German bishop who called questioning the Catholic commitments of Catholic Nazi leaders “offensive because they constitute an assault on the meaning of what it is to be Catholic.” Because “being Catholic means loving the Church; being Catholic means participating in the sacramental life of the church; being a Catholic means trying to transform the world by the light of the Gospel”?

And yet those are the words of our own Bishop McElroy of San Diego about those who question Joe Biden’s Catholicism.

And we transform the world in the light of the Gospel how?  Is it not by opposing the killing of innocent human beings?

In retrospect, we would suspect that a bishop who had said about the treatment of Jews, as Bishop McElroy has about abortion, that “To reduce that magnificent, multidimensional gift of God’s love to a single question of public policy is repugnant and should have no place in public discourse” had little or no serious concern for the lives being lost.  “Sure, abortion is bad, but what about global warming!”  “Sure the ill-treatment of Jews is unfortunate, but what about the future of Europe!” Wouldn’t we consider that to be repugnant?

What would anyone say now about a Catholic politician as prominent as Mario Cuomo if, during the 1930s in Germany, he had said:  “I accept the Church’s teaching about Jews, but must I insist others do so?  Our public morality. . .the moral standards we maintain for everyone, not just the ones we insist on in our private lives – depends on a consensus view of right and wrong.  The values derived from religious belief will not and should not be accepted as part of the public morality unless they are shared by the pluralistic community at large by consensus.” That statement would have worked equally well for Catholic segregationists in the American South.

If that Catholic politician in 1930s Germany had available to him the “seamless garment” argument used by Mr. Cuomo, he might have said, “I grant that the treatment of Jews may have a unique significance but not a preemptive significance.”  “The Jewish question is an important issue for Catholics, but so is the question of the injustice of the reparation payments we have been forced to make along with all the resulting hunger and homelessness and joblessness, all the forces diminishing human life and threatening to destroy it.”

All the forces diminishing human life and threatening to destroy it?  Like . . . oh, I don’t know . . . abortion?

Who, in retrospect now, wouldn’t find such a “Catholic” politician either an obvious liar or a delusional hack?

If you find my comparison between the Catholics who enabled the Nazis and modern Catholics who enable abortion troubling, perhaps you should read Anne Applebaum’s article in The Atlantic titled “History Will Judge the Complicit.” Take out all the tendentious stuff about the numbers at Trump’s inauguration and a phone call with the Ukrainian ambassador and replace it with Nancy Pelosi and Joe Biden’s support for abortion and for policies that result in the closure of faithful Catholic institutions, and then change the title to “On the Nature of Complicity: Abortion’s Catholic Enablers and the Judgment of History.”

That judgment is unlikely to be any kinder to them than it has been to their German predecessors.

COLUMN BY

Randall Smith

Randall B. Smith is a tenured Full Professor of Theology. His book Reading the Sermons of Thomas Aquinas: A Guidebook for Beginners is available from Emmaus Press. And his book Aquinas, Bonaventure, and the Scholastic Culture at Paris: Preaching, Prologues, and Biblical Commentary is due out from Cambridge University Press in the fall.

EDITORS NOTE: This The Catholic Thing column is republished with permission. © 2020 The Catholic Thing. All rights reserved. For reprint rights, write to: info@frinstitute.org. The Catholic Thing is a forum for intelligent Catholic commentary. Opinions expressed by writers are solely their own.

VIDEO: The Vortex — Gay Democratic Bishops

Actual honesty would be refreshing.

TRANSCRIPT

It’s not really shocking that, in a political landscape dominated by identity politics, certain “types” would gravitate around one party or another, one candidate or another. It’s not really hard and fast — or a guarantee — but the Marxist media assures us it is the case, so it must be true. Remember, even a blind squirrel finds a nut every now and then.

So, buzzing around the Biden-Harris ticket are child-murderers; homosexual activists; climate-change fanatics; illegal-immigration, open-border enthusiasts; poorly catechized Catholics and so forth. You know — the Marxists. Trump, of course, has pretty much the other end of the spectrum: Patriots, pro-lifers, religious-minded and so forth. You know — actual Americans.

There is some crossover (but not much, particularly in the increasingly polarized society). But there’s another group that kind of gets to fly under the radar, but which really bears much closer scrutiny. That group is the U.S. bishops. And that body deserves much scrutiny because of the disproportionate influence they have over voters.

It’s not that the individual Catholic voter hangs on every word emanating from the U.S. hierarchy (thank God), but they have created an environment through decades of deceit, deception and distortion that gives the impression that the Catholic Church aligns better with the Democratic Party than Republicans.

But it doesn’t. Not even close. The Democratic Party platform supports outright intrinsic evils while also denying natural law. But there are bishops in the U.S. who are all down with that evil, and Church Militant thinks that those bishops should just come clean and stop hiding behind each other’s skirts.

We all know that a sizable number of clergy are homosexual. Even James Martin admits that. Heck, he even upbraided them and said they all need to come out of the closet and fess up. You’ll rarely hear this out of Church Militant’s mouth, but we agree with Martin. He should start with himself: Admit it or deny it, Father — come on.

But he is certainly not alone. How about Lexington, Kentucky bishop John Stowe. How about it Bishop? Are you a homosexual? We mean, why should you get to abuse your office to promote all kinds of moral filth, pretending you don’t have a dog in the fight. You house the anti-Catholic “Fortunate Families” outfit in your diocese, you speak at gay conferences like New Ways Ministry and you even share the stage with known homopredator clerics. But that sexual abuse is okay, right — because it’s all in “the family”?

Look, if you’re a big, ol’ queen, fine. We can use that as a jumping-off point to start talking about all this. But until you come clean, you can’t be taken seriously because you’re fundamentally dishonest and untrustworthy. And is there anything else that can be said more disgraceful of a successor of the Apostles?

So when you publish social media posts about how evil President Trump is, why should anyone listen? You haven’t shown your cards — and we suspect you may have two or three queens. Speaking of gay bishops, how about Joseph Bambera of Scranton, Pennsylvania who has had James Martin in the diocese so many times to promote sodomy that it raises questions about what’s really going on there.

Bambera is so effeminate that some of his own clergy call him “Bambi,” and Bambera has been outed previously by Church Militant as a registered Democrat. You know, a card-carrying member of the party that hacks up little children and sells their pieces for profits and also promotes gay sex like nobody’s business.

Giving Bambi the benefit of a doubt in presuming he doesn’t actually support the chopping up of little babies, whatever could be his reason for remaining in the party? While abortion is the religion of the Marxists, taxpayer-supported, non-stop, constitutionally protected gay sex is a really close second. So why would any bishop be a Democrat and throw his support behind child murderers and gay sex? To protect the spotted owl? Seriously? Come on!

These exact same questions can be asked of Cupich in Chicago, McElroy in San Diego, Tobin in Newark and in quite a number of other places, some of which might escape scrutiny the first time around. The question is simple: Are you gay? Yes or No? Given the current climate in the Church and the world, every single Catholic has a right to know that.

Long gone are the days when bishops could be trusted — many of them even admit that. Good. At least that’s a start. We won’t go into the reasons we can’t believe you or trust you; the list would need two eternities to be read aloud in its entirety. But a major reason you can’t be trusted is because so many of you are homosexuals in hiding, working to destroy the Church from within. And you need to say out loud, all of you (which I suspect is a pretty sizable number, if you are homosexual.

A simple “yes” or “no” would do. But of course, that will open up another set of questions for those of you who are gay. For example, how much do you let your sexual inclinations and attractions influence your politics, doctrine and well, frankly, your personal lives? It’s abominable, given your track record, that you think we don’t have a right to know this.

Of course we do. Faithful Catholics should be picketing your residences and chanceries demanding to know if you are homosexual. Much of the gay world supports the Democratic Party and brain-dead Biden. But you already know that, of course. You hate the religious air that surrounds the Republican Party, even if it is thin, questionable or even somewhat imagined.

You gay bishops hate God. You hate Scripture. James Martin even tweeted out that the Bible does say homosexuality is wrong and bad and all, but he added the Bible is wrong. Most importantly, you hate the Church. Admittedly, some of you have this love-hate relationship with the Church — you live with a tortured conscience, longing to have sex with men, maybe even actually doing so, but also knowing it’s wrong. And you are unable to come to terms with the inner conflict.

You need to resign. You need to get out now and save your soul. And if you need a little help, then call on the laity. You all may not like it but what the Era of Trump has caused is the great unmasking — pun intended. Everyone is now learning where everyone else stands on everything, and as a result, everyone is realigning themselves.

We think that all you bishops should join the party. Come out of the closet. Like you buddy Jimmy says, come screaming out and declare what you are. It’s probably safe to say that — while there would be a few surprises — most of you aren’t gonna shock any of us. We already know who you are by the way you direct your politics.

We know many of you ran deep into the closet in seminary and have made a pretty comfortable life for yourselves. Well, time’s up. Many of you are gay Democrats, which admittedly is kind of redundant. But regardless, your people need to start asking you. They need to go up to you after Mass (whether it’s in Detroit, New York, Washington, D.C. or Fort Worth, and flat out ask you, “Are you gay?”

If there was ever a time for total exposure in the Church, this is the time. What the faithful need to understand is a large number of these men are more gay than they are Catholic, and they are doing everything they can think of to get you to vote Democrat. It’s just helpful to know where a person stands. Nothing wrong with that, right your excellencies? A little actual honesty would be refreshing.

EDITORS NOTE: This Church Militant video is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

The Vortex — Directly Over the Target — Bombs away!

TRANSCRIPT

Church Militant (a 501(c)4 corporation) is responsible for the content of this commentary.

The old expression “the enemy only fires back when you are directly over the target” would mean that the Marxists in the Church — especially in the hierarchy — are getting bombed right now. These crooks have decided to give fake-Catholic Biden a pass on his evil and the wickedness of the entire Democratic establishment, and the real Catholics are ticked off and letting them know.

In truth, there’s no doubt some of the bishops are actually scared — terrified — of ticking off the Harris-Biden ticket, and yes, we all know: That is the actual order of the ticket. Even Biden says it. And so did Harris. The bishops are scared because the ground is shifting considerably as Catholics begin to wake up. Within the ranks of bishops, the word is going out that the rebellion against their tyranny must be put down.

This explains the massing of forces of Marxist Catholics to throw down for Biden. The so-called Catholics for Biden initiative is a rogues’ gallery of phony Catholics like Carolyn Woo. Woo used to head up the leftist-posing-as-Catholic “Catholic Relief Services” (CRS).

We caught up with her a few years ago after she gave a brainwashing session at an Ohio parish, duping ignorant laity. For some reason, she didn’t want to answer our questions, and her handlers tried (unsuccessfully) to sneak her out a side door.

CRS, a favorite of the U.S. hierarchy, takes gobs of your tax dollars and spends them on projects around the world, partnering with abortion providers and contraceptive providers in Third World countries, pretending it’s all about poverty.

Well, it sort of is. Their philosophy is to eliminate poverty by eliminating the poor. So it really is altogether fitting that such a woman would sit on the board of Catholics for Biden. But she’s just one of many in the Marxist Catholic establishment throwing their weight around, lying about Biden being acceptable to Catholics. He’s not.

A couple evenings ago, Newark cardinal Joesph Tobin came out swinging for Biden. And just a recap as some of His Eminence’s highlights, he got caught tweeting out the now famous, “Nighty nite baby. I love you” tweet to his general account by accident, later claiming it referred to his sister.

Remember, Tobin owes his appointment to Newark to homosexual molester Theodore McCarrick, as testified to by Abp. Viganò. And then there was the revolting case of a known gay Italian model who was living in his residence — paid for by collection-plate money — who bolted back to Italy as soon as Church Militant and others exposed it.

When questioned about why he was living with Cdl. Tobin, the official response was he was a foreign student studying English at Seton Hall. When questioned about why he couldn’t live with the thousands of other students on campus, no response.

This man came out with his thinly veiled support for Biden — another supporter of sodomy-as-marriage — on a Zoom conference hosted by Boston College. Birds of a feather really do flock together, don’t they?

Trump really is remarkable. In less than four years, he has managed to get every one of these snakes to slither out from under their rocks and completely reveal themselves. It’s very important to know who the enemy is. Thank you, Mr. President.

The forming of all these phony Catholic groups, the actions of Marxist bishops trying to suppress good priests — all of this is attributable directly to Trump. Although mischaracterized, even the student paper at homosexuality loving Jesuit Fordham University in New York admits this in a recent op-ed entitled, “Trump Creates a Schism in the Catholic Church.”

That’s a real knee-slapper. Trump did not create the schism in the Church (which is very real) any more than Church Militant caused the division in the Church that bishops love to accuse us of. Both Trump and Church Militant have only brought to light the existing formerly-in-the-shadows reality. Good working with you, Mr. President. Thanks for the help. Let us know if we can help you.

Still, the media cannot keep their paws out of this story. A headline from just the day before last from a Minnesota outlet reads, “Two Renegade Priests: One Calls COVID Sham, One Says Dems Face Hell.” Notice how they can’t resist labeling them “renegade” for calling out the truth?

Imagine how life would be under that Harris-Biden administration for actual Catholics. We were all sitting around talking here in the studios a short while ago, and I was saying, “I’ve been doing this kind of work all my life, and I have never seen this level of engagement by the Catholic apostate, heretic, Marxist, dissident crowd.”

They are losing control of the narrative. And what’s more, they know it. However, their narrative has always been built on lies. And truth — that pesky little thing — it always finds a way of coming out. And, moreover, once it gets out, look out. It changes everything.

The Tobins, Martins and Woos of the world, along with all their other evil allies, have brought about the almost-complete destruction of the Church through a series of lies and lies built on lies. And now, truth is coming out, and they have become desperate. And it is looking more and more like the truth is busting out everywhere and being reflected all over the political world.

Trump rallies are, once again, the hottest ticket in town with thousands showing up. The Marxist media continues to lie, almost to the point of hysterical. In a Twitter side-by-side posting, you see on the right a picture from Latino voters at a Trump event. The other side shows that CBS grabbed the picture and captioned it as Biden appealing to Latino voters while campaigning in Florida.

The actual picture — before CBS cropped it — showed loads of Trump people in the crowd. Who knew so many MAGA people showed up at Biden rallies? If it weren’t so evil, you’d be rolling in the aisles. But when evil is pushing back this hard — and the Marxists in the Church are linked arm in arm with them — you just know that you are right over the target.

A month ago, the Marxist polls were showing a virtual blowout for Harris-Biden. Then, right after the conventions, their lies had to start being rolled back because Judgment Day, Nov. 3, will expose all. So after being told for months that Biden was going to crush Trump — after racism, COVID, injustice, climate, impeachment, economy, you name it — all of a sudden, the Marxist media had to start saying the polls were tightening (especially in battleground states).

Amazing how Trump came storming back out of nowhere to draw to a tie all over the map. That, of course, is if he really was ever that far behind. And then came the bombshell (and what has created ulcers at Marxist headquarters at the Democratic People’s Party).

A new poll came out from the outfit that has proved the most reliable (and the one that really can’t be ignored), Rasmussen. For the first time ever, Trump pulled into the lead over Biden after trailing Biden by five two weeks earlier.

Yes, this is a gigantic clash of the ages. Every last weapon is being pulled out by both sides, but the biggest weapon, truth, is only held by one side.

You just have to pick it up and actually use it.

EDITORS NOTE: This Church Militant video is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

VIDEO: The Vortex — A Great Realignment. And it’s a good thing.

TRANSCRIPT

As you know, Church Militant is always helping you understand the connections between the culture and the Church, the crossover between both worlds. Those two worlds parallel each other in many ways — they’re practically mirrors. And, theologically, it makes sense. As Bp. Sheen used to say, the world is the theater of redemption: It’s where the great spiritual war rages.

So as we look out on all of this, we see something happening in each arena. There is a great realignment occurring, in the Church and in the culture. In many ways, the old labels, which used to categorize things neatly, no longer apply. Consider, for example, “conservative” and “liberal.” There’s so much confusion over those classifications — especially liberal — that no one really knows what they mean.

The old labels are so ineffective at describing the new realities that, oftentimes, you find adjectives popping up in front of them which pretty much redefine them. So the old word is used, but there is a totally different meaning behind the word.

For example, there aren’t just plain old Republicans anymore. But now there are actual Republicans and then there are RINO Republicans — Republicans in name only. Notice, to bring up the point of the crossover between culture and State, we also no longer have just Catholics, but “CINOs”: Catholics in name only.

And, of course, we have not just Catholics but “cafeteria Catholics.” All these adjectives are now necessary because the terms no longer mean what they used to mean. All of this redefining is going on because there is, underneath it all, a massive realignment going on — in the culture and the Church.

In the political world, Donald Trump has become the symbol of all that, not to mention also a precipitating cause. Tens of millions of Americans were beginning to sense a political shift, a new paradigm emerging where they, as individuals, no longer mattered.

They sensed correctly that the world they knew was being buried under a mountain of globalist Marxism. In the Church, faithful Catholics likewise sensed a major shift happening. They couldn’t put a finger on it, but they knew something was up, something was off.

So they began realigning themselves, leaving the Church of Nice and hunting out the actual Faith. It’s like a Catholic version of the Walkaway movement that is rippling through the Democratic Party — a movement of Democrats who have woken up and realized the party no longer represents them. And so they are walking away from it.

There is a huge ideological shift, an enormous immigration, a mass migration where people are seeking out like-minded individuals and associating themselves with them. It’s all over social media. It’s all over politics. It’s all over the Church. It’s all over the place.

People are choosing sides, and in that choosing up sides, some people are waking up and realizing that the folks they thought they had a lot in common with, they really didn’t. So they cut ties and are establishing new ones.

Now, some people find this upsetting. They bemoan the division, they lament the lack of unity. Frankly, that’s a stupid response. There can be unity only if it’s a unity around truth. In fact, this entire realignment is about the truth.  Some waking up to it, others wanting to destroy it.

But truth is the cause. When truth is present, there are only two responses. It is either embraced or raged against. The Marxist Left, up until the arrival of Donald Trump, was able to keep the truth of its agenda under wraps, to conceal the truth.

But now, it’s all out there. Nothing is hidden. And people are making choices. And that’s a good thing. Even on the side of evil, it’s good to know who’s who. For Catholics and other Christian denominations — remember, this is how things will be at the end of the world. Truth will cause one great, final realignment — and it will be final.

EDITORS NOTE: This Church Militant video is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Banish Sin, Transform the Church

David G. Bonagura, Jr.: Detractors say trivializing sin was part of Vatican II’s spirit and is still in the post-conciliar Church. But the perennial problem is really sin itself.


The Second Vatican Council is back in the news lately, with two prominent, tradition-minded bishops revisiting well-known arguments of conciliar interpretation in light two recent Vatican documents, Amoris Laetitia and the Abu Dhabi statement on world religions. Their analyses of the Council, the difficulties in reconciling certain expressions with tradition, and the frightening breakdown of the Church that followed – a breakdown that some even justified under the Council’s nebulous “spirit” – are serious, though faithful Catholics will find their premises and conclusions worthy of debate.

Yet their analyses are now also very familiar. Blaming the Council for the Church’s ills has been a hobbyhorse for 55 years now. At this point, when it comes to arguing about the Council, Ecclesiastes’ tired observation comes to mind: “There is nothing new under the sun.”

Just weeks earlier, as public Masses were resumed after the coronavirus suspension, a little-noticed controversy impressed on me that the problems in the Church today stem from something far more fundamental, and simple, than the formulation of documents that few know about and fewer have read. When the proposal circulated of having Mass without reception of Holy Communion, some faithful and some clergy blanched. Their issue was not solely the deprivation of union with our Lord. It was that they did not see the point of having Mass at all without reception.

Such a thought stems from a profound misunderstanding what the Mass – and the sacrifice that it represents – is for: the salvation of souls. And there is no wonder the goal of salvation has been forgotten, since sin, the tyrannical reality from which we must be saved, has itself been deliberately banished from view, trivialized as a human psychosis, or written off as an obsession of earlier, unenlightened times.

It is the marginalization of sin, more than Vatican II or anything else, that has transformed the life of the Church as we know it in the last half-century. Our entire faith and the structure of the Church rest on three acts: creation, fall, and redemption. By dismissing the fall, and every sin that has come after it, the understanding of redemption necessarily takes on new meaning.

If Jesus did not need to redeem us from sin, then essential doctrines and the sacramental economy have to be reconceived. Consider:

* Jesus Christ ceased to be emphasized as our Savior who sacrificed His life to atone for our sins. Instead, images of “Jesus is my homeboy” became popular. Without a message of salvation, Jesus was reduced to a “great moral teacher” on par with Socrates.

* Shifting the view of the Savior and salvation caused worship to shift as well. Witness how few people today know the phrase “the holy sacrifice of the Mass.” We know from the work of Dr. Lauren Pristas and Father John Zuhlsdorf that, after the Council, the formal prayers of the Mass were deliberately reworked to eliminate references to sin. The turning of the altars to face the people, never mentioned by the Council, heightened a new experience of a community celebrating itself above the sacrifice of Calvary. The general desacralizing of Catholic worship made the Mass seem as it were of no consequence rather than the enduring basis of our salvation.

* Sacramental Confession was abandoned by nearly all the faithful. There is no need to confess if we have not sinned. And if we do not need to confess, then surely there is no need for acts of penitence or reparation. Eight days of the year that still call for abstinence from meat is all that is left of Catholic penitential practice.

* If there is no sin, then everyone goes to Heaven, Catholic or not, virtuous or not. Funerals became canonizations, and Hell was dismissed as a tactic to coerce good behavior. Catholicism became just another world religion on par with the others, since it no longer had anything unique to offer.

* If people do not need to be saved from sin, then there is no need for priests to give up their lives in service of those seeking redemption. The collapse of vocations is a direct result of the banishment of sin.

* Catholic theology, morality, and education all took turns for the worse after this constitutive understanding of sin and redemption was morphed.

Were there other causes of the Church’s post-Conciliar malaise? Yes, of course. But it is not an oversimplification to home in on the trivialization of sin as the root cause of it all. Throughout Church history, lying at the root of heresy is not an intricately woven system, but a misunderstanding of the first principle of revelation. To minimize sin alters the view of God’s entire plan of salvation, from the covenant with Abraham, to the redemption by Christ, to the role of the Church in perpetuating His salvation.

Vatican II’s perpetual detractors will argue that the trivialization of sin was part of the Modernist spirit that infiltrated conciliar documents and the post-conciliar Church. Yet that implies the Council itself is not the definitive problem; the Council and its “spirit” have been invoked to cloak a deeper issue.

It is, therefore, this deeper issue of properly understanding sin and the need to be saved from it that requires our attention above all. For Benedict XVI’s hermeneutic of continuity to have the final word on interpreting the council, sound Catholic doctrines – Creation, Fall, Redemption – must first be restored to their proper place.

COLUMN BY

David G Bonagura, Jr.

David G. Bonagura Jr. teaches at St. Joseph’s Seminary, New York. He is the author of Steadfast in Faith: Catholicism and the Challenges of Secularism (Cluny Media).

EDITORS NOTE: This The Catholic Thing column is republished with permission. © 2020 The Catholic Thing. All rights reserved. For reprint rights, write to: info@frinstitute.org. The Catholic Thing is a forum for intelligent Catholic commentary. Opinions expressed by writers are solely their own.

Here’s Why Sen. Kamala Harris Held Up An Attempt To Rescue A Struggling Catholic Hospital

  • A California judge granted Sen. Kamala Harris qualified immunity in 2017 after a healthcare company sued her for allegedly holding up its acquisition of a financially struggling hospital network. Qualified immunity is a legal doctrine shielding public officials from liability if they violate citizens’ rights. 
  • The lawsuit came years before Harris introduced a resolution in June alongside other Senate Democrats to eliminate the legal protection from law enforcement officers. 
  • Former Vice-President Joe Biden selected Harris as his running mate as he prepares for a bruising general election fight with President Donald Trump. 

A judge once gave Democratic Sen. Kamala Harris qualified immunity after a healthcare company sued the former California attorney general for allegedly blocking the company’s attempt to purchase a financially struggling Catholic hospital.

Prime Healthcare Services sued Harris for supposedly imposing strict conditions on the sale of the Daughters of Charity Health System in exchange for millions of dollars in contributions.

Prime scuttled the deal and claimed in the 2015 lawsuit that executives at Daughters told the company that Harris would block the sale if Prime did not agree to unionize Daughter’s network of six hospitals. The lawsuit alleges Service Employees International Union-United Healthcare Workers West (SEIU-UHW) in return promised to support Harris with $25 million in contributions.

The Wall Street Journal Editorial Board reported on the lawsuit in a post Wednesday, noting also that Judge Gonzalo Curiel in San Diego rejected Prime’s claim in 2017 and gave her qualified immunity.

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden selected Harris as his running mate Tuesday as he prepares for what will likely be an intense general election.

Qualified immunity is a legal doctrine that shields public officials from liability for violating citizen’s constitutional liberties. Harris, a former California prosecutor, introduced a Senate resolution in June alongside Sens. Ed Markey of Massachusetts and Cory Booker of New Jersey to eliminate qualified immunity for law enforcement officers.

Their bill came amid protests following the death of George Floyd, a black man who died in May after a Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck for several minutes, video of the incident shows.

Harris “abused her constitutional authority by placing her need for political financial support over the health-care needs of the people,” Troy Schell, general counsel for Prime, said in a 2015 statement. Prime alleged that Harris effectively “forced the company to withdraw its offer for the DCHS hospitals, jeopardizing health care in these underserved communities.”

Daughter’s board of directors selected Prime to take over the hospitals in 2014, HealthCare Finance reported in 2015. Prime’s $843 million offer far exceeded all other proposals and allowed Daughters Charity’s healthcare mission to continue. The deal also would have protected the unfunded pensions of the hospital network’s then-17,000 staff, according to HealthCare’s report.

Harris imposed several “poison pills” to the deal, The WSJ Editorial Board noted in the Wednesday report. These included a condition forcing Prime to continue hospital operations unchanged for 10 years — the “requirement that would have made it impossible to save the hospitals,” according to Prime’s lawsuit.

Harris, who at the time was responsible for approving such acquisitions, also required Prime to maintain 24-hour nursing at the hospital, as well as surgery, anesthesia, laboratory, radiology and pharmacies for five years. In addition, she mandated that hospitals offer 12 to 18 services such as orthopedics for 10 years. “These conditions were unprecedented,” The WSJ Editorial Board noted.

Integrity Healthcare took over the hospitals in July 2015 before going bankrupt in 2018 due in part to the expense of managing the network, the Los Angeles Times reported in 2018. Verity Health, which is managed by Integrity, had more than $1 billion of debt from bonds and unfunded pension liabilities as a result of taking on Daughters.

Santa Clara County, California bought two of the six hospitals in 2019, according to Mercury News. Prime Healthcare purchased another hospital in April, with California hospital operator AHMC Healthcare buying the remaining two in March, media reports show. California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, Harris’s successor, approved both the AHMC and Prime deals in July.

Harris has not responded to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment about the lawsuit and Prime’s claims.

COLUMN BY

CHRIS WHITE

Tech reporter.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved. Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

Catholic and “catholic”

Fr. Paul D. Scalia: The Church’s children should resemble her. We ought to strive to be catholic (universal) in our zeal, our mercy, and our embrace of Truth.


In today’s Gospel, our Lord likens the Kingdom of heaven to “a net thrown into the sea, which collects fish of every kind.” (Mt 13:44-52) This net, which gathers not just one kind of fish but fish of every kind, serves as a good description of what we confess every Sunday: the Church is catholic.

Now, most people probably think of “Catholic” as the brand name of a particular Christian denomination. Yes, we speak colloquially of the Catholic Church as distinct from the Lutheran, Episcopal, Methodist churches, etc. But that’s a fairly recent designation, only since the Reformation. Before the Church was “Catholic” she was already “catholic.” It’s a truth we find expressed in the Church’s earliest years. The word “catholic” means universal, embracing and bringing all things together into a unity (from the Greek kata holos, “according to the whole).

Now, the distinction and relation of “Catholic” and “catholic” is important: one cannot be Catholic without also being catholic. To be a member of the Church means to share in her catholicity. So, what does that entail?

First, the Church is catholic – universal – in the most obvious sense: for all people. “Here comes everybody” is James Joyce’s famous description of the Church. She welcomes all comers, embraces and incorporates all people – “from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and tongues, all peoples, of every race, nation, and country throughout the world.” (Rev 7:9) She leaves no group or kind of people beyond her mission and solicitude.

Now, catholic in this sense does not mean everyone thrown together willy-nilly, as you might toss all your clothes into the closet. Rather, it means all people brought together as one, as a unified whole. In the United States, we are now witnessing what happens to a society when its various peoples have lost their principle of unity. The Church, however – and, in the end, only the Church – is truly universal because she both embraces all people and makes them one body in Christ.

The implications of this universality should be clear. It means, first, that we welcome all people into the Church. Anyone who repents and believes is welcome regardless of any accidental qualities.  Further, this catholicity requires that we actively seek to bring the Gospel to all peoples, and all peoples to the Church.

Second, the Church is catholic in the sense that she forgives all sins. This is a consequence of her being the continuing presence of Christ Himself in the world.  Our Lord has authorized her to act and speak in His Name. He entrusted to her ministers His own power to forgive, a power limited only by a person’s desire to be forgiven.

Through the ministry of the Church, any of our sins, from the most trivial to the most severe, can be forgiven when we repent and ask forgiveness. Which also means that we should desire the extension of that forgiveness and reconciliation. Indeed, we should participate in the Church’s ministry of reconciliation. As such, our own personal forgiveness should extend as far as the Church’s, from the most trivial slight to the gravest sin against us. As regards forgiveness we can never say, “thus far and no further.”

Throughout her history, from Tertullian to Calvin, the Church has seen plenty of rigorists who would like to shorten the reach of her mercy. Like the slaves in the parable of the wheat and tares (Mt 13:24-43), they want a Church of saints not sinners. In the current “cancel culture,” the mobs of secular rigorists give us a sense of just how brutal a society is that desires pure justice (or what passes for it) and no mercy.

Finally, the Church is catholic in the sense that she possesses all truth. Everything necessary for salvation is found within her doctrine. All religions possess some aspects of the truth. Only Christ’s Church possesses the fullness of the truth.

Notice that the net in the parable brings in “all kinds of fish,” both the desired and the undesired. Similarly, the Church holds both pleasing truths (human dignity, forgiveness, heaven) and hard truths (sin, judgment, hell). To be Catholic means to assent to all that the Church teaches – not just to the parts we like.

The Church’s history is littered with heresies, a word that indicates the choosing of one truth to the exclusion of others (Greek again haerisis, not kata holos). Those who do so cease to be catholic, because they are embracing not the fullness of the truth but only the parts they like. If we call ourselves catholic, we must show ourselves to be truly catholic, embracing all truths — not just the convenient ones.

Mother Church’s children should bear a resemblance to her. So it is that we ought to strive to be catholic in our zeal for souls, in the reach of our mercy, and in our embrace of the truth.

COLUMN BY

Fr. Paul D. Scalia

Fr. Paul Scalia is a priest of the Diocese of Arlington, Va, where he serves as Episcopal Vicar for Clergy. His new book is That Nothing May Be Lost: Reflections on Catholic Doctrine and Devotion.

EDITORS NOTE: This The Catholic Thing column is republished with permission. © 2020 The Catholic Thing. All rights reserved. For reprint rights, write to: info@frinstitute.org. The Catholic Thing is a forum for intelligent Catholic commentary. Opinions expressed by writers are solely their own.

Pope cites French epic poem to “prove” Christianity is as violent as Islam

“Pope Francis trotted out a scene from the 11th-century French epic poem La Chanson de Roland this week to prove Christians have tried to convert Muslims by the sword, just as Muslims have done to Christians.”

The Pope’s moral equivalence is obscene at best. He also stated: “Beware of the fundamentalist groups: everyone has his own.”

True, but no religion but Islam has a history of aggression and an imperative — supported by religious texts — to conquer the world and subjugate unbelievers as inferiors, while murdering those who leave the faith.

Nowhere in Christian tenets is there a command to conquer by the sword; however, this is prescribed in Islamic texts and law, and has been steadily followed in varying degrees for 1,400 years.

Christians also defended themselves against expansionary Islamic marauders from the 7th century onward, as the latter rampaged through the Middle East and Africa, murdering far more Christians than Christians killed Muslims in all the Crusades combined.

And they’re still doing it. Christians are facing genocide at the hands of Muslims in the Middle East and Africa; most of the world ignores this, including the Pope, who instead insists that “it’s not fair to identify Islam with violence.”

The Pope has been a powerful promoter of Islam, going so far as advance theological reforms in Catholic schools to promote a “common mission of peace” with Islam. He largely ignores the gross human rights violations against Christians, women, minorities and apostates that are justified by normative Islam. He has not called on the leaders of Islamic states and mainstream Islamic leaders to condemn the Islamic texts that sanction such abuses. Instead, he has stated that “Christianity and Islam have more in common than people think…and the two religions defend common values that are necessary for the future of civilization.”

“Hours before Pope Francis called for the abolition of capital punishment” last Friday, he warmly embraced the Grand Sheikh of al-Azhar, Ahmed el-Tayeb — the revered Islamic scholar and cleric who has endorsed jihad suicide attacks against Jews and wants converts to Christianity to be killed. Pope Francis and el-Tayeb early this year published “A Document On Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together.”

Then last month, Pope Francis installed new cardinals who “share his vision for social justice, rights of immigrants and dialogue with Islam.”

Regarding La Chanson de Roland, “the French themselves to cry foul, reproaching the pontiff both for besmirching one of their most beloved pieces of epic literature and for using a fictional narrative to illustrate a point about how Christians supposedly behave.”

 

“Pope Cites Fictional French Epic to Prove Christians Are Violent,” by Thomas D. Williams, Breitbart, November 21, 2019:

ROME — Pope Francis trotted out a scene from the 11th-century French epic poem La Chanson de Roland this week to prove Christians have tried to convert Muslims by the sword, just as Muslims have done to Christians.

“A scene from The Song of Roland comes to me as a symbol, when the Christians defeat the Muslims and line them up in front of the baptismal font, with one holding a sword,” the pope told an Argentinian interreligious dialogue group Monday.

“And the Muslims had to choose between baptism or the sword. That is what we Christians did,” he declared.

It did not take long for the French themselves to cry foul, reproaching the pontiff both for besmirching one of their most beloved pieces of epic literature and for using a fictional narrative to illustrate a point about how Christians supposedly behave.

“La Chanson de Roland is obviously not a historical chronicle of events, but an epic poem, a chanson de geste, the oldest and most complete manuscript, written in Anglo-Norman, and dates back to the early twelfth century, four centuries after the facts it is supposed to recount,” wrote Vini Ganimara Thursday for the French Catholic news site Riposte Catholique.

The Song of Roland was indeed inspired in part by a historical event, namely Charlemagne’s expedition to Spain in 778, Ganimara observes, but this expedition to Spain was actually undertaken at the request of several Muslim governors of Spain, in rebellion against the Emir of Cordova.

Moreover, the invasion was unsuccessful, and is recounted as such in the poem.

“The memory of Pope Francis evoking the victory of the Franks over Muslims is therefore confused, because the expedition was not a victory,” Ganimara observes.

“The fictitious case of the forced baptism of Muslims supposedly defeated after the capture of Zaragoza — which did not take place — is not historical, but is a pure imagination of the poet,” he adds, noting that contrary to the pope’s account, there is not even a Christian holding a sword in the original work.

“How then can he affirm that ‘this is what we Christians did’?” he concludes.

In his address, Pope Francis was attempting to show that it is not just Islamic extremists who practice violent fanaticism, but that Christians are equally guilty of religiously motivated violence….

COLUMN BY

 

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EDITORS NOTE: This Jihad Watch column is republished with permission. © All rights reserved.

Pro-life Hour met with counter-demonstration in Ottawa

Posted by Eeyore

This is a few moments from two intersections where a one hour pro-life expression took place. At one corner there was a counter-demonstration which seemed to attempt to profane the Catholic Church, suggesting that for them, it is more than a right-to-abort issue, and perhaps more of a complete rejection of Western values.

Do Christians and Muslims Worship the Same God? Absolutely Not. Here’s Why.

My article in PJ Media on a much-misunderstood topic:

The Qur’an says that Christians and Muslims worship the same God (29:46), and so does the Catholic Church. The Irish Catholic newspaper recently considered this question and offered an argument from authority, which is the weakest of all arguments: Christians and Muslims worship the same God because the Catholic Church’s Second Vatican Council says so in the documents Lumen Gentium and Nostra Aetate. But a closer examination of the evidence shows this to be false.

Besides the obvious differences regarding the Trinity, the crucifixion, and the divinity of Christ, there are deeper differences that are often overlooked.

  1. Free will. There are numerous passages of the Qur’an, as well as indications from Islamic tradition, to the effect that not only can no one believe in Allah except by his will, so also no one can disbelieve in him except by his active will. “And to whoever God assigns no light, no light has he” (24:40).

The issue of free will versus predestination has, of course, vexed Christians of various sects for centuries, as different biblical passages are given different weight in various traditions. Calvinism, of course, in its pure form is notorious for its doctrine of double predestination, the idea that God has destined people for hell as well as for salvation. But this position is largely unique to them in the Christian tradition, which generally holds that God desires all men and women to be saved, and gives them the means to attain this salvation. The idea that God would create men for hell is in total conflict with the proposition that God “desires all men to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Timothy 2:4), and that he “takes no pleasure in the death of anyone” (Ezekiel 18:32).

The situation in Islam is, on first glance, even worse, with the Qur’an’s testimony on this, as on other matters, appearing to be hopelessly contradictory. The Qur’an, says the Qur’an, is “nothing but a reminder to all beings, for whoever of you who would go straight; but you will not do so unless Allah wills, the Lord of all Being” (81:27-29). Those who would “go straight” — follow Allah’s straight path — cannot do so “unless Allah wills.”

The Qur’an goes significantly further than that, into a more or less open determinism: “If Allah had willed, he would have made you one nation; but he leads astray those whom he wills, and guides those whom he wills; and you will surely be questioned about the things you have done” (16:93). Even though everything is in Allah’s hands, even the decision of the individual to obey him or not — for he leads astray those whom he wills, and guides to the truth whom he wills — human beings will still be held accountable for the things they have done.

Allah even sends people to hell based not on their deeds, but solely upon his fiat: “And if we had willed, We could have given every soul its guidance, but the word from me will come into effect: I will surely fill hell with jinn and people all together” (32:13).

The Qur’an repeats this idea many times: Those who have rejected Allah do so because he made it possible for them to do nothing else. And indeed, given the fact that in the Islamic scheme of creation and salvation, human beings are the slaves of Allah, not his children, the rejection of free will is not altogether surprising. Allah tells Muhammad that “some of them there are who listen to you, and we lay veils on their hearts so that they don’t understand it, and in their ears heaviness; and if they see any sign whatever, they do not believe in it, so that when they come to you they dispute with you, the unbelievers saying, ‘This is nothing but the fairy-tales of the ancient ones’” (6:25-6).

There is much, much more. Read the rest here.

EDITORS NOTE: This Jihad Watch column is republished with permission. © All rights reserved.

The Abuse Summit: It’s Only the Beginning

Robert Royal: People are happy that McCarrick has finally been defrocked, but now we need to deal with other abusers and enablers. 

February is not high tourist season in Rome. Skies are gray and temperatures low. St. Peter’s Square is relatively empty. But journalists filled the nearby Press Office earlier this week – more, according to one veteran, than since the death of St. John Paul II –because of the summit on the sex abuse crisis, which begins this evening with meetings between abuse survivors and participants, and continues Thursday through Saturday with formal sessions, parts of which will be streamed on the Vatican website. A video of the opening press briefing with remarks by Cardinal Cupich, Archbishop Scicluna, and other key figures is available by clicking here.

To be frank, it’s hard to say why so many journalists are here since no one, including Church spokesmen, expects that anything very dramatic will happen over the next few days – at least not in the formal sessions. What happens outside and around them, however, may be a different matter.

When the summit was announced last September, partly because of papal missteps in handling abuse cases in Chile, it seemed that the Church was going to take some large steps forward. There have been many smaller steps for years in many places around the world, everything from easier reporting mechanisms to better human formation in seminaries to the unprecedented laicization last weekend of former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick.

Expectations ran high, not least because the Holy Father asked the American bishops, during their annual November meeting, not to vote on ways to hold bishops accountable – whether they are abusers themselves, like McCarrick, or covered up abuse by people under their authority. They were told to wait until a uniform approach could be developed in February when many of the presidents of bishops’ conferences and heads of religious orders would gather together in Rome.

But Vatican spokesmen have more recently been encouraging people to lower expectations; and the focus this week is quite different: “The Protection of Minors in the Church.” That, of course, is a worthy goal. In many parts of the Catholic world, rules are in place, but there hasn’t been serious follow through. If the next few days bring proven practices to new places, that will be all to the good.

But it’s also much less than we were hoping for. And in America, we’ve already come a long way towards responding to the part of the abuse crisis that involves priests. We have been expecting – and had been told – that the next phase would be figuring out how to hold bishops accountable. That’s been a continuing problem, not only in America, but in Chile, Honduras, Australia, Europe, the pope’s own Argentina, and the Vatican itself.

People are happy that McCarrick has been expelled from the priesthood, for example, but they want to know how it was possible for a man widely rumored to be an abuser to have moved up in the hierarchy and eventually become cardinal-archbishop of the capital of the most powerful nation on earth. Three popes and dozens of Vatican officials are now part of the story. Pope Francis has promised an investigation into the files. It’s almost a year later and we’ve heard nothing of that, not even whether there’s an active inquiry underway.


Pope Francis by Will Oliver/EPA-EFE

Meanwhile, a new book, which will be officially released Thursday, the first day of the summit here in Rome, claims that 80 percent of the upper echelons of the Vatican are gay. Some remain celibate, others act out in various ways, but they form what, in local parlance, is called “the Parish,” a network of people who either cover for one another or, given their own inclinations, look the other way.

Or at least that’s what Frederic Martel, the author, says. Martel is a gay activist in France and his motives in publishing this book at this particular moment are suspect – as are some of his wilder claims. But he seems to have conducted thousands of interviews with various figures from high-placed Cardinals to Swiss Guards, and quotes some by name.

The excerpts that have appeared so far raise as many questions as they answer. But the whole matter of the gay presence in the Church and its role as an enabler – which the summit organizers are avoiding, indeed are denying is a factor – will not go away.

Martel says (and there’s no reason to doubt it since there have been no denials forthcoming) that his access to the Vatican was facilitated by Msgr. Battista Ricca, who is Director of the Papal Residence (i.e., Casa Santa Marta) and an official with the Vatican Bank. Ricca was widely known to have had a boyfriend or two when he was a Vatican diplomat in Uruguay. And he was caught in an elevator with a boy prostitute.

It was in response to a reporter’s question about his past on the plane returning from World Youth Day in 2013 that Pope Francis famously remarked, ““If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?”

But it’s partly the pope’s judgment in such matters that has raised further questions. Not only the bishop he wrongly defended in Chile, but even recent appointments like that of Gustavo Zanchetta – a bishop accused of abusing seminarians in Argentina and a friend of the pope’s – to a specially created post at one of the Vatican financial institutions. He had to be removed while investigations are going on.

And then there’s the recent naming of Irish-American Cardinal Kevin Farrell to the position of camerlengo, the official who declares the pope officially dead and then runs the Vatican, with limited powers, during the interregnum, the period between the death of one pope and the election of another.

Farrell lived for six years in the same residence with then-Cardinal McCarrick and claimed – to widespread skepticism – that he had no knowledge of, had never even heard rumors about, McCarrick’s outrages. It’s curious that the pope would pick a potentially questionable figure for such a sensitive post.

All of this suggests that what goes on in the synod hall this week is the merest beginning to what will continue to be a large and troubling process. More on all that in coming days.

COLUMN BY

Robert Royal

Robert Royal

Dr. Robert Royal is editor-in-chief of The Catholic Thing, and president of the Faith & Reason Institute in Washington, D.C. His most recent book is A Deeper Vision: The Catholic Intellectual Tradition in the Twentieth Century, published by Ignatius Press. The God That Did Not Fail: How Religion Built and Sustains the West, is now available in paperback from Encounter Books.

EDITORS NOTE: This Catholic Thing column with images is republished with permission. © 2019 The Catholic Thing. All rights reserved. For reprint rights, write to: info@frinstitute.org. The Catholic Thing is a forum for intelligent Catholic commentary. Opinions expressed by writers are solely their own. The featured image is by Pixabay.

GAY IS ANTI-LIFE: They’ll even kill to commit sodomy.

TRANSCRIPT

Exactly 46 years ago today — to the day — the U.S. Supreme Court authorized the mass extinction of tens of millions of pre-born children — cloaking the genocide in a made up out of thin air, alleged right to privacy.

That right to privacy then went on to hatch even more destruction — against the family, natural law and so forth. One of the big issues it gave birth to was, again, a never before heard of right to sodomite marriage.

Well, those two issues linked arms and joined forces a few days ago in a “Catholic” setting as two homosexual men stood in front of a parish just before Sunday Mass with their little boy Cohen and presented a syrupy presentation about just how normal they are and how completely ordinary their situation is.

More to the point: They waxed on about how the parish was so welcoming and accepting and how wonderful all the people in it were. They were inspired to start going there regularly because on an earlier trip, they had seen a lesbian couple bringing up the gifts and being warmly accepted.

At the end of their seven-minute presentation — rife with heresy — they received a standing ovation from the warm, friendly, accepting parishioners who just ate it all up.

The normalization of not just homosexuality anymore in Catholic parishes, but now on top of it, the accompanying child abuse that occurs when a child is “born” of a sodomite pairing — yes, we said, “Born.” Because this child was not adopted. The little boy, Cohen, is a product of in vitro fertilization (IVF) and a woman whose womb the homosexuals rented because natural law prevents them from having sex, conceiving, bearing and giving birth.

So they used every technological ability at their disposal to simply skirt all Church teaching further and bring a new life into the world, willfully depriving that boy of his God-given right to a mommy.

And the pastor allowed this. And the crowd went wild. And the bishop, well, he did issue a statement expressing his displeasure and said he would be meeting to “discuss the situation” after he gets back from the March for Life events in D.C.

The diocese is the archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, the parish is St. Joan of Arc and the bishop is Archbishop Bernard Hebda.

The two clerical clowns who run the parish are the pastor, Fr. Jim DeBruycker, and the parochial vicar, Fr. James Cassidy — you wouldn’t even know they are priests.

These men allow this evil to take place — in fact, they encourage it. Every Sunday, whatever wild-eyed modernist who wants to ramble on about gay this or that, immigration, trans this or that, climate change is invited to get up and speak for a few minutes on just how Catholic their immorality is — how central to their faith.

For example, the gay lovers told the fawning audience — and at this point, that’s all this parish is: an audience — that it was good for Cohen to have to fathers.

They also simply passed right over the horror of IVF — again speaking of it in purely ordinary terms. And this is where the gay, anti-life crowd finds its footing.

Surely, these two sodomites posing as actual Catholics must know that the IVF method automatically results in the death of many other children as part of the process.

Various eggs (where did two men get female eggs?) are all fertilized, allowed to grow for a period and then the ones determined to be best suited to come to full term are then implanted — in this case in a rented womb.

The others — meaning the other humans — they are “discarded,” a short little euphemism for killed. If, as is pretty routine, more than one tiny human was implanted in the rent-a-womb surrogate, at some point, “selection” is made again and the “leftovers” are killed in utero.

This is malevolent. Are the two homo “dads” going to tell little Cohen that in order for him to come into existence, they had to kill off some brothers and sisters of him, because since all they can do is sodomize each other, they had to resort to science?

Are they going to tell him that they actively chose to deny him a mommy because, in the end, all they cared about was trying to make their sodomy look normal?

But perhaps most pressing: Is Archbishop Hebda going to move to laicize the clergy that promote this horror, and is he going to disband that parish — which doesn’t even call itself a parish — it’s a “community.”

Hebda did not necessarily cause this issue, at least not at this parish, but he is certainly responsible now for stopping it dead in its tracks.

If that parish is still around, if those priests are still around at the end of the month, that will tell you everything you need to know about Archbishop Hebda.

EDITORS NOTE: This Church Militant video with images is republished with permission.

VIDEO: The Ties That Divide

TRANSCRIPT

As we get into the new calendar year, all signs point to an explosive year for the Church, a great disruption, a great divide. The year was barely 48 hours old and the U.S. bishops had begun to meet on retreat about the scourge of sexual abuse among the clergy.

But even here, on this topic, there is a divide among so many of the bishops. A few well-balanced ones who don’t really have any connection to the errant theology and formation from the 1970s know and say that the problem is homosexuality.

But the vast majority of them, because they are slaves to that malformation of the 1970s, refuse to admit this reality even in the face of overwhelming evidence.

They are, frankly, a pitiful crew to behold. Even with the feds and state attorneys general raiding their chanceries looking for secret files covering up cases of sexual abuse of minors — 80 percent of whom were teenage boys — even still, they will not admit the reality.

And that’s because too many of the bishops themselves are gay. And let’s be very clear here: One gay bishop is too many. But in the USCCB, it would be the height of naivete to not understand that many of the men sitting in that room saying it’s not a gay problem are gay themselves, so of course they are going to say that.

Others who are not directly sexually attracted to other men are still complicit, because they refuse to either admit the horror of this sin, or, they turn a blind eye to it because they do not wish to face the wrath and rage of gay priests in their dioceses, like Abp. Allen Vigneron here in Detroit.

According to his own seminary faculty member, Mary Healy, who said publicly that he will not end the homosexual anti-Catholic group Dignity’s weekly Mass because he’s afraid to anger the gay priests here in Detroit.

He and others like him, however, never seem to be so concerned about angering traditional Catholics or people fighting for the Faith in their own lives. And all this with news now spreading that the much-anticipated $200 million fundraising campaign is going to be announced in the next week or two. It’s disgusting.

Here’s the gist of the problem on this question of “division.” It’s a smokescreen, the charge that someone is “divisive” or causes division. What a panty-waist accusation to hurl at someone. Seriously, from a bishop, “You are divisive”?

Do they not know how all the prophets and patriarchs, apostles, saints and martyrs spoke routinely? And, oh yeah, the Son of God. All these men were “divisive.” That’s the point.

But the limp-wristed, light in the loafers, emasculated theology of most of today’s bishops has as its greatest sin giving offense. Anything, and we mean anything else, is acceptable, worthy of a second, third or even fourth chance, but if you come off as socially impolite, you’re done.

The homosexual or homosexual-minded man should not be ordained in the first place, and all Hell breaks loose when they are consecrated to the office of bishop.

They sacrifice truth and its bold preaching to their own disgusting femininity and cowardice and lack of authentic masculinity and hide behind the skirts of calling people divisive.

Catholicism is all about division, bishops. Do you not understand that? What do you think Heaven and Hell is all about?

What do you think being in a state of grace versus a state of mortal sin is all about?

But see, the combination of their poisonous homosexuality and intellect-rotting malformation they got back in seminary in the 1970s has made them unable to see this truth.

They want the Church to be this big soft, squishy “all are welcome” cacophony of confusion so they hide in it and rationalize their psychological illness of sodomy.

If some of the collateral damage happens to be some teenage altar boys happen to get raped along the way, oh well.

If thousands and thousands of seminarians are driven from the seminary and lose their vocations, and even sometimes their faith, oh well.

And if some of these young men end up in lives of addiction and sexual exploitation and even kill themselves, oh well.

As long as we all get along and not say things that are divisive, that’s all that matters. The bishops themselves are the cause of the division in the Church, especially the homosexual bishops and their allied bishops who now exercise great control over vast portions of the Church.

They are a cancer in the episcopate, they are destroyers of souls, and without repentance, they will suffer outrageous tortures in Hell for eternity, which is why they spend so much time ignoring Hell or promoting the spiritually insane idea that we have a reasonable hope all men are saved.

That is homosexual-think, not sound theology, and bishops who say it, promote, defend it or let it slide need to be called out.

See, the Faith itself is always whole, always pure, always a unity. But too many of these men — many, perhaps most, but not all being homosexual — are the ones who have brought about the division and then stood on their sacred office and promoted it.

Then when faithful Catholics shine the light on the division they have caused, they accuse us of creating it. That’s exactly what you expect from the mind of someone who has given himself over to the demonic.

To reveal the already existing division in the Church caused by these bishops, to bring it to light, is the work of God. There exists today in the Church a great division, largely between a huge number of bishops and the faithful.

To be frank, we and they don’t believe the same faith, just like St. Peter and Judas did not believe the same thing about Our Lord. One said He was the Messiah, the Son of God, the other betrayed Him — not the same faith.

Father James Martin and I do not believe the same faith. Cardinal Blase Cupich and I do not believe the same faith. Cardinal Joseph Tobin and I do not believe the same faith. They obfuscate and deceive souls on the altar of sodomy and support of it. What they preach is not the authentic Catholic faith.

It is they and their ilk that divide; they divide souls, separate from the truth. In what manner could it be said we accept the same foundations of the faith? It can’t. Now, many of you watching this have the same reality, just because someone in your circle says they are Catholic doesn’t mean they are, and they should not be allowed to remain in that mindset.

They either need to understand that they are mistaken about Church teachings or, if they reject them, then leave the Church in practice, because they already have in soul. All of this has been brought you by the modernist heretics crowd, largely fueled by warped and sick homosexual bishops and those among them sympathetic to it.

Want to know where all the division is from, look there — not at faithful Catholics trying to expose it.

EDITORS NOTE: This column with video and images by Church Militant is republished with permission.

Pope Francis Knew About McCarrick, Covered for his Sexual Crimes

Former papal nuncio offers written testimony incriminating Holy Father, says pope must resign

VATICAN CITY (ChurchMilitant.com) – In spite of knowing about former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick’s sexual assaults, Pope Francis lifted sanctions from him that had been imposed by Pope Benedict.

LifeSiteNews is reporting that Abp. Carlo Maria Viganò, former papal nuncio to the United States, has written an 11-page statement testifying that Pope Francis was aware of McCarrick’s homosexual predation but “continued to cover him,” even making him “his trusted counselor” in naming bishops for appointment, including Cdl. Joseph Tobin of Newark, New Jersey (McCarrick’s former diocese) and Cdl. Blase Cupich of Chicago, Illinois.

“In this extremely dramatic moment for the universal Church, he [Pope Francis] must acknowledge his mistakes and, in keeping with the proclaimed principle of zero tolerance, Pope Francis must be the first to set a good example for cardinals and bishops who covered up McCarrick’s abuses and resign along with all of them,” Viganò writes.

“The appointments of Blase Cupich to Chicago and Joseph W. Tobin to Newark were orchestrated by McCarrick, Maradiaga and Wuerl,” says the former papal nuncio, “united by a wicked pact of abuses by the first, and at least of cover-up of abuses by the other two.”

“Regarding Cupich, one cannot fail to note his ostentatious arrogance, and the insolence with which he denies the evidence that is now obvious to all,” he continued, “that 80% of the abuses found were committed against young adults by homosexuals who were in a relationship of authority over their victims.”

Cdl. Viganò on Wuerl: The Cardinal lies shamelessly and prevails upon his Chancellor, Monsignor Antonicelli, to lie as well.Tweet

Viganò also insists Washington, D.C. Cdl. Donald Wuerl was well aware of McCarrick’s sexual misconduct and “lies shamelessly”:

His recent statements that he knew nothing about it, even though at first he cunningly referred to compensation for the two victims, are absolutely laughable. The Cardinal lies shamelessly and prevails upon his Chancellor, Monsignor Antonicelli, to lie as well.

Viganò makes clear the pope was immediately notified in 2000 of McCarrick’s crimes as soon as the nunciature became aware.

“I will immediately say that the Apostolic Nuncios in the United States, Gabriel Montalvo and Pietro Sambi, both prematurely deceased, did not fail to inform the Holy See immediately, as soon as they learned of Archbishop McCarrick’s gravely immoral behavior with seminarians and priests,” he said.

He says Richard Sipe’s public letter to Pope Benedict in 2008 (published on Sipe’s website) “had had the desired result”:

Pope Benedict had imposed on Cardinal McCarrick sanctions similar to those now imposed on him by Pope Francis: the Cardinal was to leave the seminary where he was living, he was forbidden to celebrate [Mass] in public, to participate in public meetings, to give lectures, to travel, with the obligation of dedicating himself to a life of prayer and penance.

When McCarrick was summoned to the nunciature and told the news of his sanctions, “a stormy conversation, lasting over an hour” ensued, and “the Nuncio’s voice could be heard all the way out in the corridor.”

A number of other cardinals and bishops are implicated in the cover-up, including Cdls. Pietro Parolin (current secretary of state), Angelo Sodano, Tarcisio Bertone, William Levada, Lorenzo Baldisseri and Francesco Coccopalmerio, among others.

Viganò accuses Coccopalmerio and Abp. Vincenzo Paglia of belonging to “the homosexual current in favor of subverting Catholic doctrine on homosexuality.” He also named Cdl. Edwin O’Brien as belonging “to the same current” — whom Church Militant has revealed was a homosexual ringleader in New York and deliberately underreported homosexual priestly abuse in the military.

Viganò accuses Coccopalmerio and Abp. Vincenzo Paglia of belonging to ‘the homosexual current in favor of subverting Catholic doctrine on homosexuality.’Tweet

Coccopalmerio came under scrutiny last year when his secretary, Msgr. Luigi Capozzi, was busted by Italian police during a drug-fueled gay orgy in the Vatican apartments. Coccopalmerio, head of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts and close adviser to the pope, had once recommended Capozzi for bishop.

Viganò also implicates Cdls. Kevin Farrell and Sean O’Malley, saying of Farrell, “Given his tenure in Washington, Dallas and now Rome, I think no one can honestly believe him.”

On Fr. Marciel Maciel’s homosexual predation, he says, “If he were to deny this, would anybody believe him given that he occupied positions of responsibility as a member of the Legionaries of Christ?”

Church Militant reported last month that a former Legionary priest, J. Paul Lennon, close friend of Farrell’s brother, Bp. Brian Farrell, when all were in the Legion of Christ, contradicted Farrell’s claims that he had only met Maciel “once or twice” during his years in the Legion. Farrell had in fact been a member of Maciel’s trusted inner circle and held a position of high rank in the Legion, necessitating multiple meetings with his founder.

On O’Malley’s denials of knowledge, Viganò wrote, “I would simply say that his latest statements on the McCarrick case are disconcerting, and have totally obscured his transparency and credibility.”

The former papal nuncio also calls out homosexualist Jesuit Fr. James Martin as “nothing but a sad recent example of that deviated wing of the Society of Jesus.”

Viganò ends with a plea to the bishops to purge the Church of the gay lobby.

The homosexual networks present in the Church must be eradicated, as Janet Smith, Professor of Moral Theology at the Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit, recently wrote. “The problem of clergy abuse,” she wrote, “cannot be resolved simply by the resignation of some bishops, and even less so by bureaucratic directives. The deeper problem lies in homosexual networks within the clergy which must be eradicated.” These homosexual networks, which are now widespread in many dioceses, seminaries, religious orders, etc., act under the concealment of secrecy and lies with the power of octopus tentacles, and strangle innocent victims and priestly vocations, and are strangling the entire Church.

I implore everyone, especially Bishops, to speak up in order to defeat this conspiracy of silence that is so widespread, and to report the cases of abuse they know about to the media and civil authorities.

Read the full letter here.

COLUMN BY 

Christine Niles, M.St. (Oxon.), J.D.

Christine was born in Saigon, Vietnam one year before it fell to the Communists, and has lived in France and the United States. She has degrees from Notre Dame Law School and Oxford University. She is head of the News Team and editor-in-chief of St. Michael’s Media Publishing.