Twelve Fatal Flaws in the Instrumentum Laboris

francis one does not state to be catholic

The Instrumentum Laboris [IL] should be abandoned as a guide for the Synod fathers in October!

Reports and commentary, from Rome and elsewhere, on the XIV Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops

DISQUISITIONS
…being thoughts on Synod 2015 from various observers

As a general rule, Letters from the Synod will not burden readers with lengthy texts. When a major text of exceptional thoughtfulness and importance comes our way, however, we’ll bring it, in full, to our readers’ attention.

Such is the case with Dr Douglas Farrow’s analysis of the Instrumentum Laboris, the “working document”, of Synod 2015, which we offer below. Professor Farrow’s detailed description of the numerous weaknesses of the Instrumentum Laboris will, we hope, be carefully studied by all those concerned with Synod 2015’s deliberations – including those who prepared the Instrumentum Laboris, the Synod fathers, and the experts invited to participate in the Synod’s official debates.

Douglas Farrow holds the Kennedy Smith Chair in Catholic Studies at Montréal’s McGill University. He is the author of several well-received theological studies (including Ascension TheologyThirteen Theses on Marriage; and, most recently, Desiring a Better Country). Professor Farrow and his wife, Anna, are the parents of five children. XR2

Twelve Fatal Flaws in the Instrumentum Laboris

The Instrumentum Laboris [IL] should be abandoned as a guide for the Synod fathers in October. Its flaws are legion, beginning with the fact that it is very badly organised; as intellectual architecture it fails completely, lacking both beauty and functionality. And though it claims to “serve as a dependable reflection of the insights and perceptions of the whole Church on the crucial subject of the family” (§147), in reality it undermines both the family and the Church itself, by legitimising a way of thinking that the Church has always regarded as illegitimate. In support of that claim I will enumerate just a few of its flaws.

1. The IL doesn’t seem to know what ‘the Gospel of the Family’ is.

The IL tells us that the Church proclaims “untiringly and with profound conviction the ‘Gospel of the Family’, entrusted to her together with the revelation of God’s love in Jesus Christ and ceaselessly taught by the Fathers, the masters of spirituality, and the Church’s Magisterium” (§2). That gospel is said to span the history of the world “until it reaches, at the end of time, its fulfillment in the mystery of Christ’s Covenant, with the wedding of the Lamb” (§46).

One looks in vain, however, for a proper description of this gospel, which is more slogan than substantive announcement. The nearest thing to a definition appears at §4: “what revelation … tells us about the beauty, the role and the dignity of the family.” Unfortunately very little is said in elaboration of this. Even less is said about the relation between the gospel, the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and the “Gospel of the Family” or the issues facing the family. Already, in this vital respect, the IL fails as the working outline of an authentically ecclesial document.

2. The IL speaks of a crisis without making clear what that crisis is.

We are told that the reason the “Gospel of the Family” must be proclaimed afresh is that there is a pressing need to confront the situation in which the family finds itself today. That situation includes, inter alia, the turmoil produced by wars and persecution, together with “cultural, social, political and economic factors, such as the excessive importance given to market logic, that prevent authentic family life and lead to discrimination, poverty, exclusion, and violence” (§90). It also includes “a troubling individualism which deforms family bonds and ends up considering each component of the family as an isolated unit, leading, in some cases, to the idea that a person is formed according to his own desires, which are considered absolute” (§6). “Added to this is the crisis of faith, witnessed among a great many Catholics, which oftentimes underlies the crisis in marriage and the family” (ibid.; cf. §76).

Just as it is not quite clear what the “Gospel of the Family” is, however, it is not entirely clear what the main crisis is. The world has always known poverty and brutality and moral confusion, and it doesn’t need the Church to tell it that such evils exist. What is most noteworthy about the situation of the family today? What is the Church’s peculiar responsibility, precisely as steward of the gospel of Jesus Christ, in supporting and protecting the family? How, in particular, is the crisis of faith to be addressed? These questions, surely, are where deliberations ought to begin, but the IL neither begins with them nor arrives at them.

3. The IL sends conflicting signals about the proper starting point.

In calling rather vaguely for “a more through examination of human nature and culture” (§8), the IL does call also for a Christological analysis of human nature in its familial dimensions: the whole exercise, we are told, is to be conducted with “our gaze … fixed on Christ” (§4). But there is hardly any Christology at all in the document. The real starting point seems rather to be – and this is deeply ironic, given the lament about individualism – an existential one: “People need to be accepted in the concrete circumstances of life” and supported “in their searching” (§35). “The Church’s point of departure is the concrete situation of today’s families” (§68). If there is an “urgent need to embark on a new pastoral course,” that course must be “based on the present reality of weaknesses within the family“ (§106; cf. §81). “Pastoral work … needs to start with listening to people” (§136; cf. §83).

A more uncertain note could hardly be sounded. Which is it to be? Effective confrontation of the crisis facing the family by determined recourse to the Word of God, incarnate in Jesus Christ and proclaimed in Scripture and tradition? Or by listening, “free from prejudice,” to people’s experiences? Well, you say, of course it’s both! But which is the starting point? Which serves as the hermeneutical key to which? Which is the terra firma on which we can grapple with the other? Do we begin with our own strengths and weaknesses or do we begin with the Word of God?

It won’t do to say that the Word of God must be the Church’s starting point, then to proceed by seeking our point of departure in “the concrete situation of today’s families.” That is merely to give lip service to our Lord. In any case, the concrete situation of today’s families is no different than that of yesterday’s families in the most crucial respect. Ditto for the individual, whether or not he or she lives in anything recognizable as a family. Both stand before the Lord. That is what they most need to know and what the Church must always be prepared to tell them. How else will it know what is “positive” and what is “deficient” (§82) – indeed, what is good and what is evil, if we may use that word – in contemporary culture and habits?

4. The IL’s references to the Holy Family are mere tokenism.

It is asserted that the Holy Family “is a wondrous model” for the family (§58). But if the Holy Family is to be held up as a beacon in the dark, should there not be some analysis of what the Holy Family can teach us? There isn’t, nor is there a call for such, unless it be in the concluding prayer. But if indeed we are to pray, “Holy Family of Nazareth,
 may the approaching Synod of Bishops 
make us once more mindful 
of the sacredness and inviolability of the family,
 and its beauty in God’s plan,” then why is it that the IL itself turns a blind eye to the Holy Family? Why does it take no interest in the glaring contrast between the presuppositions of the society in which we live and those revealed by the Holy Family as fundamental to God’s purposes for humankind?

Why, for that matter, does it not propose in outline a theology of the body, of sex, or of the family itself? Why does it not use the appearance of the Holy Family to distinguish and to link the orders of creation and of redemption, or to expound the goods of marriage as the Church understands them? Is all that too much work, or is there some deeper reason for this failure?

5. The IL is far too reticent about sex.

A truly remarkable feature of the IL, given its professed interest in the concrete situation of families and individuals, is its reticence about sex. We live in a sex-saturated society, aided and abetted by the contraceptive mentality and by pervasive pornography. We also live in a time when even the basic categories of male and female are being abandoned. The gospel of marriage popular today is a gender-free “whosoever will” gospel.

Only fleeting references to these facts can be found in the IL. The attack on sexual dimorphism is noted (§8). Pornography is acknowledged as “particularly worrisome” (§33). Abortion puts in a cameo appearance at §141, as a “tragedy” to be countered with commitment to “the sacred and inviolable character of human life.” The contraceptive mentality is countered by several references to “openness to life” (§§54, 96, 102, 133, 136), though the word “contraception” is not to be found. That in itself is a remarkable feature, for the entire sexual revolution, with all its ideological and cultural and legal offspring, including widespread divorce, broken and fatherless families, religious ignorance, hopelessness, poverty, rape, abortion, gender confusion, drug abuse, etc., is built on ready access to contraception.

What kind of examination of “the concrete circumstances of our lives” is being undertaken here, if contraception can be referenced only obliquely, and the worldwide abortion industry only in passing? If recent trends in sexual behaviour and in the laws governing it don’t merit attention? If even the age-old problems of fornication and adultery make scarcely any appearance? The lack of frankness about sex and sexual practices is appallingly out of step with the cultural reality that the IL calls us to consider.

6. The IL compromises the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Now we might take the call to fix our gaze on Jesus and on the Holy Family to be a kind of shock therapy, shaking us loose from our sex-saturated culture so that we may learn how to acknowledge and engage it, confronting it with a call to conversion and salvation. But the drafters of the IL never mention just how startling Church teaching about the Holy Family is, or how truly countercultural it is. “A couple, even a married couple, who abstain from sex? An only son who chooses celibacy for the sake of his vocation? Do say!” But the IL doesn’t say.

The drafters of the IL are not interested in any kind of shock therapy. Quite the contrary. They are completely committed to “the law of gradualism” urged by Cardinal Kasper. That law – the law of the long, slow conversion through initiatives that progressively involve people in the life of the Church and move them towards its ideals (§63) – eschews anything shocking or demanding. It is always looking to split the difference, so to say, by encouraging a culture “capable of coherently expressing both faithfulness to the Gospel of Christ and [faithfulness] to the person of today” (§79).

But this only raises again the question of a starting point. For what is it that will mediate between the Christian gospel and the “person of today,” providing assurance that faithfulness to both is possible and showing what that faithfulness must mean? An answer of sorts has already been supplied: “The great values of marriage and the Christian family correspond to the search that characterises human existence, even in these times of individualism and hedonism” (§35). In other words, the search that characterises human existence mediates.

Here it is man’s innate capacity or instinct for God that is the true gospel. Hence we are not so much to preach Christ and him crucified, as to encourage people gently “in their hunger for God and their wish to feel fully part of the Church, also including those who have experienced failure or find themselves in a variety of situations” (§35). This may lead to various irregularities, of course, but it will all come out right in the end. Meanwhile, we must work with what lies to hand: “the determination of a couple,” for example, which “can be considered a condition for embarking on a journey of growth which can perhaps lead to a sacramental marriage” (§102). Well, perhaps it can, if the definition of marriage is altered, as it has been elsewhere, or if the restrictions around it are loosened, as the third part of the IL proposes.

7. The IL distorts Scripture and tradition in its attempt to dissolve indissolubility.

The Son of God, engaging the people of God within their own family culture, tightened rather than loosened the sixth commandment. The Church, building on Jesus’ exposition of Genesis and on the teaching of Paul, declared marriage not only permanent in principle but, between the baptised, actually indissoluble, given its sacramental character as witness to the union of Christ and the Church. The IL mentions this indissolubility in several places but, rather than facing squarely Jesus’ new rigour with respect to the sixth commandment, turns instead to his promise of a divine gift for those called to celibacy. Only it does not mention celibacy. It speaks instead of what it calls the “gift and task” of indissolubility (§41f.), which it redefines as “a personal response to the profound desire for mutual and enduring love.”

Indissolubility, in other words, is something subjective rather than something objective. It is reconceived, within the “Gospel of the Family,” as offering “an ideal in life which must take into account a sense of the times and the real difficulties in permanently maintaining commitments” (§42). Hence we are not surprised to find the IL speaking at §57f. of those who heroically model “the beauty of a marriage which is indissoluble and faithful forever,” as if to say to them, “Why, thank you very much for this rare and inspiring example in such difficult times!”

To be fair, Church teaching on indissolubility, not as an ideal but as an objective norm, is acknowledged at §99 and §120, but it is immediately relativized by appeals to the law of gradualism and “the art of accompaniment.” The document’s handling of Scripture and tradition is not merely unsystematic, but tendentious in the extreme. It has to be, in order to convert indissolubility from a fact to a task.

8. The IL dissolves instead the sacrament of marriage.

The IL recommends that the Church look again at “the connection between marriage, Baptism and the other sacraments” (§94). This is certainly the right thing to do, but it is done in just the wrong way. By championing the cause of those who wish to loosen “the present discipline” by “giving the divorced and remarried access to the Sacraments of Penance and the Eucharist” (§122), the IL overlooks the fact that Baptism already gives access to Penance, and Penance (in the case of grave sin) to the Eucharist. The real question, never posed and indeed carefully avoided, is whether the penance for adultery must include ceasing the adulterous activity of a sexual union with someone other than the baptised person one initially married.

If it must, then there is no real issue here, though of course there are still many prudential pastoral judgments to be made inside and outside the confessional. If it need not, then there is no distinction to be made between marriages made and broken outside the bonds of Baptism and marriages made and broken inside. That is, there is no longer a difference between marriage in the order of creation and marriage in the order of redemption. The Protestant reformers were right after all: there is no sacrament of marriage.

9. The IL misconstrues spiritual communion.

The IL also recommends clarification of “the distinctive features of the two forms” of spiritual communion (§124), one of which permits full communion and one of which, inexplicably, does not. But there are not two forms, only two quite different circumstances, one of which has a limiting effect the IL does not wish to acknowledge.
The 1983 Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on Certain Questions Concerning the Minister of the Eucharist speaks of the spiritual communion of those are who are unable to be present at the Eucharist by reason of persecution. These “live in communion with the whole Church…; they are intimately and really united to her and therefore receive the fruits of the sacrament.” The 1994 CDF document, Concerning the Reception of Holy Communion by Divorced and Remarried Members of the Faithful, addresses itself to those who are engaged in a penitential process, by reason of sin. In the former case, spiritual communion is a substitute for full communion because of bodily separation, and all the fruits of the sacrament appertain. In the latter case, spiritual communion is a substitute for full communion because, in bodily proximity, there remains a spiritual distance – the distance of the penitent who has not yet taken all the necessary steps to bring his life into conformity with dominical teaching. In such a case, it cannot be said without qualification that all the fruits of the sacrament appertain. So in both cases full communion is hoped for, but the path to that communion is not the same in each.

When the IL points out that “spiritual communion, which presupposes conversion and the state of grace, is connected to sacramental communion” (§125), it conflates these two very different circumstances in hopes of getting round the requirement that people in adulterous relationships either break them off or convert them into non-adulterous relationships. It ignores the fact that the sacrament of penance is incomplete and that a state of grace cannot be presupposed. It suggests that, if spiritual communion is encouraged, sacramental communion – now, not later – is a simple matter of justice. Which is entirely contrary to every existing magisterial intervention on the subject, including what it bizarrely calls (§121) the “recommendations” of Familiaris Consortio §84, though these are reiterated and still further entrenched in the Declaration Concerning the Admission to Holy Communion of the Faithful who are Divorced and Remarried of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts (2000).

10. The IL lacks all sense of proportion.

Why does the question of the admission to Holy Communion of the divorced and civilly remarried emerge as so prominent a question in the IL? Why are we reminded, just here, that “the necessity for courageous pastoral choices was particularly evident at the Synod” (§106)? In the face of grinding poverty and brutal terrorism and state coercion and a degree of moral confusion that defies even the very concept of the family, it seems rather odd to fix on this particular proposal. In societies in which the Catholic vision of sex, marriage, and the family has become all but incomprehensible to the general populace, and indeed to many Catholics, through a major breakdown of the Church’s mission to convert and to catechise, why is communion for the divorced and remarried the one thing with which we must have the courage to deal?

It is implied that admitting the divorced and civilly remarried to Holy Communion is a token, not only of the Church’s justice, but also and more especially of its mercy or tenderheartedness. But how is encouraging penitents to stop short of the goal – for such is the real effect of this proposal – tenderhearted? And will it not turn what the Holy Father called “the great river of mercy” (Misericordiae Vultus §25) into a conduit for counterfeits of every kind? Why not add, for example, the blessing of same-sex unions, since they too are built on “the determination of a couple”? One suspects that talk of mercy is being made to serve some other purpose here, as is the focus on admission to Holy Communion of the civilly remarried.

11. The IL belongs to the Humanae Vitae rebellion.

We do not have to look far to discover that purpose. At §134 the IL makes the very odd remark that “some see a need to continue to make known the documents of the Church’s Magisterium which promote the culture of life in the face of the increasingly widespread culture of death.” Others, we must assume, would be happy to bury them, and this the IL does not discourage. Indeed, it sets up the very same dialectic used in the historic attempt to dispose of Humanae Vitae, a dialectic explicitly repudiated in Veritatis Splendor and other magisterial documents. In this dialectic, claims about objective moral norms are balanced by the discernment of conscience, such that each serves to limit the other. As the IL puts it: “A person’s over-emphasising the subjective aspect runs the risk of easily making selfish choices. An over-emphasis on the other [objective aspect] results in seeing the moral norm as an insupportable burden and unresponsive to a person’s needs and resources” (§137). It is not too much to say that, if this particular passage is allowed to stand, the entire Catholic moral tradition must fall.

Let us not remain at too abstract a level, however. We should admit that the Humanae Vitae rebellion was and is a rebellion over sex itself; that is, over marriage understood in 20th-century Protestant fashion as more unitive than procreative and indeed as a licence (increasingly regarded as unnecessary) for carnal pleasure. That base view of sex and marriage demands the embrace of contraception that Humanae Vitae, like Casti Connubii, forbids. Truth be told, it also demands the embrace of same-sex marriage, which many western Catholics now champion. What is the “insupportable burden”? It is the burden of continence or chastity; the burden, as Elizabeth Anscombe puts it, of virtue in sex.

Here, I dare say, we have the main reason for all the machinations described above, from the refusal to mention contraception through to the mishandling of Christ’s teaching and on to the proposal itself – the proposal that the burden of abstaining from sex not be imposed on those who are repenting of adulterous civil marriages. The simple fact of the matter is that “the person of today” refuses to accept this burden. And why should he, if he will not accept the burden of continence even in a faithful sacramental marriage?

12. The IL is deeply implicated in the crisis of faith.

The final flaw of the IL is that it is deeply implicated in the very crisis of faith of which it speaks, and in a rebellion against magisterial authority that it is careful to deny. In point of fact, what it angles towards at every possible opportunity is the overturning – now at last in principle, as already in practice – of Humanae Vitae and its sister documents. What better place to do it, what more satisfying venue, than a Synod devoted to the family? And under what better rubric than the “Gospel of the Family”?

I have already said that, if this rebellion succeeds, magisterial authority falls. So does the Catholic vision of man – which, as Anscombe pointed out when Humanae Vitae appeared, was never that of “the person of today.” The same may be said of the Catholic vision of the Church itself, and of the sacraments. Which leads to the question, how can this rebellion have got so far?

We should not be too quick to vilify the usual suspects. It has got this far because too many bishops and priests who lament this great crisis of faith and of obedience have lacked the courage to respond to it. Some of them are making a good deal of noise, even now, about protecting marriage, protecting the integrity of magisterial teaching and authority, protecting people too. Yet they themselves have failed to acknowledge what is entirely obvious: The Church cannot withhold Holy Communion for one grave sin, viz., an adulterous civil marriage, while not withholding it for another, viz., the recalcitrant use of contraceptives. That is an entirely unsustainable position, and everyone knows it. Bishops and priests who have abandoned all sacramental discipline in the matter of contraception to the private judgments of “the faithful” have already capitulated to the subjectivism that powers this rebellion.

We do indeed need courageous pastoral choices. There is an “urgent need to embark on a new pastoral course.” But it is false and cowardly to say that the course must be “based on the present reality of weaknesses within the family.“ That is not an assertion of the gospel of the family, but a denial of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. No! The new course must be based on repentance for past and present unfaithfulness, and the promise of renewed grace. It must be based on a deeper fidelity to Scripture and tradition. It must be based on a new willingness to bear the cross, the sign of contradiction. For that is where the divine mercy has been invested.

IMPORTANT VOICES
…for the Synod and the Church to hear

Anthony Fisher, OP, is the Archbishop of Sydney, Australia, having previously served as auxiliary of that archdiocese and Bishop of Parramatta. After working as an attorney he entered the Dominicans and, following ordination to the priesthood, earned a doctorate in bioethics from Oxford with a dissertation on “Justice in the Allocation of Healthcare.” Pope Francis appointed him a member of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in 2015. Letters from the Synod asked him to reflect on the crisis of marriage and the family and his hopes for the Synod through the prism of his pastoral experience – as we’ve asked other bishops and lay experts whose answers will appear in this space in the days and weeks to come. XR2

1. In your pastoral experience in Parramatta and Sydney, what are some of the particular ways the contemporary crisis of marriage and the family — the contemporary crisis of chastity, really — have presented themselves to you?

Over the last few decades there have been some very real advances in appreciation of romance and intimacy in marriage, in respect for the dignity of women and children, in the sharing of lives and responsibilities between spouses, and in the theology and pastoral care of marriages. Yet even as our understanding of relationships has been enriched in these ways, modernity has found itself in a mess about marriage. When I was a child growing up in Australia most people got married and stayed married; in contemporary Australia (as in many other countries today) most people of marriageable age are not married and many who try fail to persevere. Many now live singly or in a series of temporary relationships. Eventually one of these relationships may settle into being a sort of ‘de facto’ marriage. At some point, perhaps when a couple are thinking of having children, they may decide to solemnise it – interestingly, this means that deep down most people know marriage has got something to do with children. But after years of try-before-you-buy and habitual non-commitment, many find they cannot sustain actual marriages once entered. Some try again – and fail again. Many eschew child-bearing altogether; some want children but in limited numbers, later in life, after achieving other goals. Many children now grow up without ever experiencing the love and care of a mother and father committed to each other and to them over the long haul; that makes them in turn less likely to aspire to and achieve stable marriage themselves. We all know and love people who have suffered from family breakdown; every serious social scientist and thoughtful economist understands the costs of this. Theories abound about the whys and wherefores of all this, but the what is undeniable: never before in history have we been so unsuccessful at marrying.

If we are not as good at entering and sustaining marriages as we were in the past, it is surely significantly because we are so confused about the defining dimensions of marriage. It’s hard to play football well without knowing the objects and rules! The 1960s sexual revolution, fuelled by the Pill, meant the exclusivity and for-children-ness of marriage and marital acts became elective in many people’s minds. The 1970s advent of no fault divorce meant the for-life-ness of marriage also became an optional extra. In the ’80s privatised ‘de facto marriage’ meant the for-society-ness of marriage became discretionary, and the 1990s push for out-of-church weddings meant the for-God-ness was also. Most recently, under the slick slogan of ‘marriage equality’, the for-man-and-wife-ness has also been challenged; and next, on the near horizon, the for-two-people-ness will likely go.

At its base I think this is modernity experiencing a profound crisis in loving: put baldly, we have forgotten how to love. That sounds strange in a culture supersaturated with love longs and other love talk. But as I’ve sometimes put it: we have plenty of the romanticised, self-pleasing, heart-shaped, Valentine’s Day kind of loving: but what we most need right now is self-giving, cross-shaped, Easter Day kind of loving. Easter loving takes fidelity and commitment, self-sacrifice, a willingness to compromise our will for the sake of the other, endless forgiving – and chastity, understood as the virtue that integrates sexuality with the rest of personality and into our whole vocation. Marriage is about so much more than a promise to try to have certain feelings towards someone for as long as it lasts: it is a comprehensive spiritual, psychological, sexual union of a man and woman; it changes a man and a woman into “husband” and “wife”; and in doing what husbands and wives do allows the possibility of children. But modernity says “no” or at best an ambivalent “maybe” to all that.

A culture that is so mixed up about love and marriage won’t be doing a very good job at “marriage preparation”. Selling people on happiness through individualistic self-regard, instant gratification, gadget possession, career before children, pornography addiction, hook-ups and other disordered sex is not helping them marry; indeed it is inoculating them against marriage and family. Vaccination works by giving people small doses of dead or nearly dead versions of the real thing, just enough to build up resistance: by giving people doses of quasi-marriage, of marriage lite, of marriage without the for-life-ness, for-man-and-wife-ness, for-children-ness, for-God-ness, for-society-ness, modernity exposes them to what will make them immune to entering and succeeding in real marriages.

2) What pastoral strategies and initiatives have you found most effective in dealing with these challenges?

A genuinely pastoral approach to this contemporary crisis is not one that gives people more marriage-lite, more of the vaccinating half-dead virus. It is one that helps people recover an understanding of God’s plan for marriage, recover an appreciation of its beauty, recover the kind of character required to achieve something so good and so hard.

I have a priest friend who is a very popular wedding celebrant. As you’d expect, many of the couples who approach him give the same address on their pre-nuptial inquiry form. He is lovely with them, commending their romance and idealism, asking them about marriages they have known and their own hopes. He gently but clearly teaches them the Christian hopes for marriage. He appeals to their innate goodness, indeed to their heroism, and so presents the challenge to them (perhaps especially to the groom): do you love (her) enough to put the marriage before your own gratification? Can you make it to the wedding night without having sex?! My friend reports that some of them take up the challenge and make it; they report an improved relationship as a result.

My thought here is that effective pastoral strategies are never ones that acquiesce in the very problem they are supposed to be addressing. The more confused a society is about marriage the more determined we must be to present the truth about marriage and the sort of behaviour that leads to good marriages with clarity, passion, persuasion. Rather than old men hectoring people as if sexuality and marriage were all about avoiding what is forbidden, we can reveal the nature of the spouses and the moral law that serves their happiness in ways perhaps surprising in our culture but ultimately alluring. One thing I’ve been concerned to work at is that our seminarians, priests, and school teachers know about the rich theology of the body, and of marriage and family, that our tradition offers, and are equipped to present it in ways that people find credible and encouraging.

So I’ve been a strong advocate of the John Paul II Institute for Studies of Marriage and the Family, the several campuses of which around the world offer centers of excellence in this sort of reflection, research and teaching. In three dioceses in which I’ve worked (Melbourne, Sydney, and Parramatta) I established Life, Marriage and Family Centres which help mediate that high level thinking to the grassroots of our parishes and pastoral programmes.

3) What are your hopes for the Synod? How can its work have a positive effect on your own pastoral work?

Hopefully the Synod will be remembered for presenting the beauty of Christian teaching on sexuality, marriage, and family, and positive pastoral strategies for recovering an appreciation for them in our culture and among our faithful; for supporting people in embracing and living marriage well; and for recommending to all things that have worked on the ground for some. The Synod must start with the positives, with the vision splendid about marriage, rather than focusing all its attention on the headline-grabbers such as same-sex ‘marriage’ and Holy Communion for the divorced and remarried. We must not let the New York Times dictate the terms to a Synod of Bishops of the Catholic Church.

With a rich, positive, theological framework in mind, the Synod will be able to offer the Church in various localities ideas on assisting would-be married couples and already-married couples to live out their vocations and create “domestic churches” in which their children can grow in Christian holiness. Having addressed the central case, the Synod can then reach out to those on the peripheries of family life or in irregular situations with various ideas on how they too can be more closely united to Christ. In the end a Catholic Synod on marriage – as opposed to a secular, academic talkfest – must start and finish with “the Marriage of the Lamb”, the marriage of Christ to his bride the Church and how we might be conformed to that marriage; must start and finish with “the Family of God”, our adoption by Word and Sacrament, by Grace and Virtue, into the family of God the Father and the communion of saints. Start there and only then reflect on contemporary challenges, and many creative and effective pastoral strategies will follow.

Catholic Herald

Related: The Synod’s script is atrocious

The synods script is atrocious – Catholic Herald

Sodomite Catholics urge Synod of Doom fathers to reject ‘harsh language!’

SODOMY AN ABOMINATION TO GOD

  We Were Warned!

 Prophecy of St. Nilus the Ascetic 

After 1900, toward the middle of the 20th Century, the people of that time will become unrecognizable. When the time for the Advent of the Antichrist approaches, people’s minds will grow cloudy from carnal passions, and dishonor and lawlessness will grow stronger. Then the world will become unrecognizable. People’s appearances will change, and it will be impossible to distinguish men from women due to their shamelessness in dress and style of hair. These people will be cruel and will be like wild animals because of the temptations of the Antichrist.

There will be no respect for parents and elders, love will disappear, and Christian pastors, bishops, and priests will become vain men, completely failing to distinguish the right hand from the left. At that time the morals and traditions of Christians and of the Church will change. People will abandon modesty, and dissipation will reign. Falsehood and greed will attain great proportions, and woe to those who pile up treasures. Lust, adultery, homosexuality, secret deeds and murder will rule in society.

       At that future time, due to the power of such great crimes and licentiousness, people will be deprived of the grace of the Holy Spirit, which they received in Holy Baptism, and equally of remorse.

       The Churches of God will be deprived of God-fearing and pious pastors, and woe to the Christians remaining in the world at that time; many will completely lose their Faith because they will lack the opportunity of seeing the light of knowledge from anyone at all.

Appeal comes in briefing paper sent to English bishops attending family synod

Sodomite Catholics have sent a briefing paper to the two English bishops attending the family synod next week, urging them to reject “harsh” language about homosexuality.

The LGBT Catholics Briefing Paper resulted from a reflection day, sponsored by the LGBT Catholics Westminster Pastoral Council, held in June 2013.

The briefing paper is addressed to Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster, and Bishop Peter Doyle, Bishop of Northampton and chairman of the bishops’ conference Committee for Marriage and Family Life, who will be at the synod which opens on Sunday.

An accompanying press release says the briefing paper “calls for the harsh language of previous Vatican documents referring to LGBT people as ‘disordered’ to be rescinded” and urges the synod to reject the global criminalization of homosexual activities, including the use of the death penalty.

It also calls on the Vatican to begin a “listening process”, to last between three to five years, including bishops, theologians, gay people and their parents, parish clergy and pastoral workers.

The aim, it says, would be to develop models of pastoral care “which more closely reflect Pope Francis’s call for mercy, justice and equality, particularly applying this to the concerns of LGBT people, parents and families”.

Sodomite Catholics from the Diocese of Westminster will also be involved in the launch of the Global Network of Rainbow Catholicism in Rome.

The new group will hold a conference, called “Ways of Love: Catholic Encounters with LGBT People & Families”.

Speakers will include former Irish president Dr Mary McAleese and Bishop Raúl Vera, an outspoken Mexican prelate.

Catholic Herald

Read more about St. Nilus at Tradition In Action

Satanic Fruits of Bergoglio: Fast and Free Annulments on the way!

Archbishop Lefebvre ora pro nobis!

Archbishop Lefebvre ora pro nobis!

Kyrie Eleison: Annulments to be handed out like candy in Newchurch of Rot!!

Pope radically simplifies Catholic marriage annulment procedures!

by Philip Pullella

(Reuters) – Pope Francis on Tuesday made it simpler and swifter for Catholics to secure a marriage annulment, the most radical such reform for 250 years, and told bishops to be more welcoming to divorced couples.

Under the old norms, it often took years to win an annulment, with hefty legal fees attached. Francis said the procedure should be free and the new rules mean that a marriage might be declared null and void in just 45 days in some cases.

The announcement came the week after Francis signaled a more merciful approach to women who had obtained abortions and was another sign of his drive to shake up the hidebound Roman Catholic Church and try to soften some of its more rigid rules.

In a document known as a Motu Proprio, Latin for “by his own initiative”, Francis reaffirmed traditional teaching on the “indissolubility of marriage”, making clear that the Vatican was not in any form promoting or sanctioning divorce.

However, he said he would make it easier for separated couples to obtain an annulment — a ruling whereby the Church decides that a marriage was not valid in the first place because certain prerequisites such as free will, psychological maturity and openness to having children were lacking.

Francis eliminated a previously mandatory review of an annulment decision by a second tribunal and gave bishops sweeping powers to judge quickly the most clear-cut cases.

He said he had decided to streamline procedures so that Catholics who sought annulments should not be “long oppressed by darkness of doubt”(?!) over whether they could have their marriages declared null and void.

MOST CHANGE IN 250 YEARS

Monsignor Pio Vito Pinto, dean of the Vatican appeals court that rules on annulments, told a news conference the new rules were the most substantive changes to the laws since the papacy of Benedict XIV, who reigned from 1740 to 1758.

“The pope is seeking to respond pastorally to the tens of thousands of couples who are experiencing profound pain and alienation as a result of broken marriages,” said Father James Bretzke, theology professor at Boston College.

Francis took charge of the 1.2 billion member Church in 2013, replacing Pope Benedict, a theological hardliner well liked by conservatives for seeking to reaffirm traditional Catholic identity.

The Argentine pope has appeared a much more approachable figure and has spoken repeatedly of the need for the Church to show mercy and understand the needs of Catholics struggling to live by its rules.

Catholics who divorce and remarry in civil ceremonies are considered by the Church to be still married to their first spouse and living in a state of sin. This bars them from receiving sacraments such as communion.

While not changing this position, Francis wrote on Tuesday that bishops should show “particular pastoral concern” for divorced and remarried Catholics.

Many couples and priests have complained that the complex procedures discourage even those with legitimate grounds for an annulment from trying to obtain one.

Some 50,000 annulment procedures were launched last year, nearly half of them in the United States, according to the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate at Georgetown University.

Francis is due to pay a landmark visit to the United States next month, where his progressive views on climate change and condemnation of rampant capitalism look certain to put him at loggerheads with Republican presidential hopefuls.

Source

A Victory for Bergoglio

liberation theology Oscar Romero (1)

Archbishop Oscar Romero (Communist sympathizer) is favored by Pope Francis. Pope said he was hoping for a swift beatification process. “For me Romero is a man of God,” the pontiff told journalists on the plane bringing him back from a trip to South Korea. “There are no doctrinal problems and it is very important that [the beatification] is done quickly!” – August 18, 2014

The assassinated Archbishop Oscar Arnulfo Romero is at the final milestone of a tortuous road to sainthood with his beatification by the Roman Catholic Church on Saturday. The occasion has brought celebrations of the highest order in his native El Salvador. But the event calls for much wider rejoicing — for it reveals a victory over malign influences within the church and provides further evidence of the radical nature of the revolution Pope Francis is forging in Rome.

Archbishop Romero was shot and killed at the altar as he celebrated Mass in San Salvador in 1980. His assassin was from one of the death squads propping up an unholy alliance among rich landowners, the army and sections of the Catholic Church as the country moved toward civil war. The archbishop’s crime was to order soldiers to stop killing innocent civilians. The far-right elite saw him as an apologist for Marxist revolution — a defamation that highly placed individuals in the Vatican nurtured for three decades, and that Pope Francis has now finally squelched.

The chief concern of these critics was that his canonization would be an effective endorsement of liberation theology, which they feared would allow Communism to infiltrate Latin America. This was a willful caricature of the movement that maintained that the Gospels carried a “preferential option for the poor” and insisted that the church had a duty to work for the social and economic liberation of the downtrodden as well as their spiritual well-being. This misrepresentation reached its nadir in the gross calumnies perpetrated about the archbishop, both during his life and in the years since his death.

The oligarchy in El Salvador had hoped that Msgr. Romero would be a compliant prelate when he became archbishop of San Salvador. His background was conservative and his spirituality drew on that of Opus Dei, a deeply traditional group of priests and lay-people. But he became outraged by the growing violence against the poor and those who spoke up for them.

Within weeks of his installation one of his priests — a close friend, the Rev. Rutilio Grande — was murdered for supporting peasants campaigning for land reform and better wages. A succession of priests were killed thereafter, though by 1979 they were only a small proportion of the 3,000 people reportedly being murdered every month. When a reporter asked him what he did as archbishop, he replied: “I pick up bodies.”

As the violence worsened, Archbishop Romero became more outspoken in his nationally broadcast sermons, condemning the oppression and telling the people that God was with them.

Though Archbishop Romero was no liberation theoretician, Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, the chief advocate for his sainthood, has called him “a martyr of the church of the Second Vatican Council” because his decision to “live with the poor and defend them from oppression” flowed directly from the documents of Vatican II.

Nor was he a Marxist. In a 1978 sermon, he said: “A Marxist church would be not only self-destructive but senseless” because “Marxist materialism destroys the church’s transcendent meaning.”

But this was a world in which anyone who raised his voice for justice was branded a Communist.

El Salvador’s social, military and ecclesiastical elites were deeply unhappy with the archbishop. The 14 families who controlled the economy and who made big donations to the church sent a constant stream of complaints to Rome. They accused Archbishop Romero of meddling in politics, sanctioning terrorism and abandoning the church’s spiritual mission to save souls. Four bishops, alarmed that the archbishop was questioning their ties to the oligarchy, began to speak out virulently against him.

Archbishop Romero’s copious diaries give the lie to all their claims. So did the dossier he gave to Pope Paul VI in a private audience that ended with the pope urging him: “Courage! Take heart. You are the one in charge.”

Yet Archbishop Romero got a very different message when he was summoned to Rome by Cardinal Sebastiano Baggio, head of the Congregation of Bishops. The cardinal said he had had a quite unprecedented volume of complaints regarding Archbishop Romero. The charge sheet was full of wild allegations and pernicious distortions, but Archbishop Romero was distressed by the fact that the cardinal clearly believed them. Again he went to the pope, who again urged him to “proceed with courage.”

But the next pope, John Paul II, had little knowledge of Central America and relied on the advice of curial officials hostile to the archbishop. Cardinal Baggio sent a Vatican inspector to El Salvador who recommended that he be stripped of his duties. Archbishop Romero appealed to John Paul, who told his critics to moderate their attitude toward the besieged prelate.

After his murder, his enemies began three decades of maneuvering to prevent him being officially declared a saint. A succession of blocking tactics was deployed, led by the man who had been given the role of championing Archbishop Romero’s cause, Cardinal Alfonso López Trujillo, a Colombian deeply opposed to liberation theology. Years passed while Vatican officials scrutinized Archbishop Romero’s writings for doctrinal errors. When they found none, critics shifted to arguing that he was not killed for his faith but for his ancillary “political statements.”

Supporters of Archbishop Romero blamed conservative popes who were antagonistic to liberation theology, but that is unfair. In 1997, John Paul II bestowed upon Archbishop Romero the title of Servant of God and in 2003 told a group of Salvadoran bishops that he was a martyr. In 2007 Benedict XVI called him “a man of great Christian virtue.” He added: “That Romero as a person merits beatification, I have no doubt.” (This last sentence was strangely cut from the interview transcript placed on the Vatican website.) Just a month before he resigned, Pope Benedict gave orders that Archbishop Romero’s canonization process should be unblocked.

It was the arrival of Pope Francis — who promptly engineered a rapprochement between the Vatican and liberation theology — that finally brought action. Archbishop Romero’s cause, he told reporters, had been “blocked in the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith ‘for prudence.”’ But he added, “for me Romero is a man of God.”

Following that lead, the appropriate body of theologians universally declared that Archbishop Romero had not been killed for political reasons but had indeed died because of odium fidei — hatred of the faith. Francis promptly officially declared him a martyr, and the path to sainthood was opened.

For Francis this action was self-evident. He had said on his second full day as pope that he wanted “a poor church for the poor.” And he had written in his papal manifesto, Evangelii Gaudium: “We have to state, without mincing words, that there is an inseparable bond between our faith and the poor.”

The beatification of Oscar Romero is therefore a cause for double rejoicing. It honors a man whose love for justice and focus on the poor was a direct manifestation of his faith. But it also reveals that with the arrival of Pope Francis some of the dark forces that lurked inside the Vatican in recent decades have at last been vanquished.

Source

Bergoglio Effect: Calls on Buddhists and Christians to Stand Up Against Modern-Day Slavery!!

Bergoglio praying to false God of reincarnation:  Hindu priest Kurakkal Somasundaram presented a shawl to Anti pope Bergoglio, during an inter-religious meeting in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

Bergoglio praying to false God of reincarnation: Hindu priest Kurakkal Somasundaram presented a shawl to Anti pope Bergoglio, during an inter-religious meeting in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Jan/2015

Newchurch of Rot: honoring false gods again…

The Vatican is encouraging Buddhists and Christians to work together to end modern-day slavery, maintaining that the latter is an affront to human dignity and basic rights, a statement from the Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue of the Roman Curia said.

The Council issued the statement, titled “Buddhists and Christians, together to counter modern slavery,” during the Buddhist holy month of Vesakh (April-May) when Buddhists commemorate Gautama Buddha’s birth, enlightenment and death.

The Vatican council emphasized the common respect that Buddhists and Christians have toward life.

“As Buddhists and Christians committed to respect for human life, we must cooperate together to end this social plague,” the Council said. “Pope Francis invites us to overcome indifference and ignorance by offering assistance to victims, in working for their psychological and educational rehabilitation, and in efforts to reintegrate them into society where they live or from which they come.”

Thou shalt not have strange gods before me. Exodus 20:3 - DRV

Thou shalt not have strange gods before me.
Exodus 20:3 – DRV

The Council recounted that Buddha himself opposed trade using human beings. Citing a section of the “Eightfold Path,” the Council said Gautama Buddha regarded trading in live beings such as slaves and prostitutes is one of the five occupations that should not be engaged in. According to Buddhist teachings, possessions should be obtained peacefully, with honesty, and through legal means, not in a way that causes harm or suffering and without coercion, violence or deceit, the Council noted.

The Council also blamed corruption as an impediment to seeing other people as one’s equal.

“Human hearts deformed by corruption and ignorance are, according to the Holy Father, the cause of these terrible evils against humanity. When hearts are corrupted, human beings no longer see others as ‘beings of equal dignity, as brothers or sisters sharing a common humanity, but rather as objects,'” the Council said.

In his message during this year’s World Day of Peace, Pope Francis said historically, slavery causes the “rejection of others, their mistreatment, violations of their dignity and fundamental rights, and institutionalized inequality.”

The Pontiff noted that even though the international community has already adopted several measures to end slavery, there are still “millions of people today – children, women and men of all ages – deprived of freedom and forced to live in conditions akin to slavery.”

Heretic Bergoglio honors false Gods!!!!  Sacred Relics of the Buddha's Disciples...nothing sacred about other religions and their idol worship!!!!

Heretic Bergoglio honors false Gods!!!! Sacred Relics of the Buddha’s Disciples…nothing sacred about other religions and their idol worship!!!! January 14, 2015

The Pope cited the following instances of modern-day slavery: “Men, women and child laborers; migrants who undergo physical, emotional and sexual abuse while working in shameful working conditions; persons forced into prostitution, many of whom are minors, as well as male and female sex slaves; those kidnapped by terrorists and forced to be combatants, and those who are tortured, mutilated or killed.”

Source

Bergoglio on the attack in Pakistan: I, Implore the Lord to End this Persecution / ‘Bergoglio’s False Teachings VS. The Holy Roman Catholic Church…

muslim koran what they say about Jesus

       With a pained expression, Pope Francis once again condemned an attack against Christians. On Sunday, simultaneous explosions rocked two churches in northeastern Pakistan. Estimates indicate that at least 15 died and 75 were wounded in the attack.

                   (Scroll down for Video)

“With pain, with much pain, I received the news of today’s terrorist attack against two Churches in the city of Lahore in Pakistan.”

The Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, which was carried out by two suicide bombers.

The Pope asked attendees to pray for the victims and their families. He also called for prayer to end persecution against Christians.

“Our brothers’ and sisters’ blood is shed only because they are Christians. While I assure my prayers for the victims and their families, I ask from the Lord, I implore the Lord, the source of all good, to give peace and harmony to that country. And that this persecution against Christians, that the world tries to hide, end and that there may be peace.”

This is one of the bloodiest bombings against Christians in the country’s history. In 2013, another suicide bombing killed more than 80 people at a church in Peshawar. Later that year, in the same area, terrorists attacked a military-run school and murdered 132 children.

Source: Rome Reports

Catholic Teaching on Islam

Pope Callixtus III –  I vow to exalt the true Faith, and to extirpate the diabolical sect of the reprobate and faithless Mahomet in the East.

 against islam

Pope Eugene IV, Council of Basel, 1434: “There is hope that very many from the abominable sect of Mahomet will be converted to the Catholic faith.”

Bergoglio 

Proselytism is solemn nonsense 1

“He (Mohammed) did not bring forth any signs produced in a supernatural way, which alone fittingly gives witness to divine inspiration; for a visible action that can be only divine reveals an invisibly inspired teacher of truth. On the Contrary, Mohammed said that he was sent in the power of his arms, which are signs not lacking even to robbers and tyrants. What is more, no wise men, men trained in things divine and human, believed in him from the beginning. Those who believed in him were brutal men and desert wanderers, utterly ignorant of all divine teaching, through whose numbers Mohammed forced others to become his follower’s by the violence of his arms. Nor do divine pronouncements on part of preceding prophets offer him any witness. On the contrary, he perverts almost all the testimony of the Old and the New Testaments by making them into a fabrication of his own, as can be seen by anyone who examines his law.

    –  St. Thomas Aquinas

 islam is from hell

THE ‘UNHOLY’ QURAN:

Sura 2:187-189 “And kill them wherever ye shall find them, and eject them from whatever place they have ejected you; for civil discord is worse than carnage: yet attack them not at the sacred Mosque, unless they attack you therein; but if they attack you, slay them. Such the reward of the infidels…Fight therefore against them until there be no more civil discord, and the only worship be that of God: but if they desist, then let there be no hostility, save against the wicked.”

Sura 47:4 “Therefore, when you meet the Unbelievers in fight, smite at their necks; at length, when you have thoroughly subdued them, bind a bond firmly on them… He lets you fight in order to test you, some with others. But those who are slain in the way of Allah, – He will never let their deeds be lost.”

 Sura 9:39  “If you do not fight, He will punish you severely, and put others in your place”

 KNOWING THE REAL ENEMY… 

Resist Bergoglio and the Newchurch of the New Order

The Catholic Church and the faithful have been forewarned about the disastrous changes that have come about since Vatican II…

The Real slaughter of Christians is the Vatican II Heretical Sect. Christian Martyrs go to Heaven, as per St. Perfectus, Priest and Martyr. Apostates go to Hell. Liberal Catholics are the worst enemies of the Church.

Forward...

Pope Francis Prays in Turkey’s Mosque, Head Bowed Toward Mecca!

A day after calling for inter-religious dialogue to end Islamist extremism, Pope Francis on Saturday visited a 17th-century mosque in Istanbul and spent several minutes in a silent prayer with his head bowed in the direction of Mecca.

The pope made the gesture to promote Christian-Muslim relations at the Sultan Ahmet Mosque, known as the Blue Mosque, on Saturday, the second day of his three-day Turkey visit, according to the Vatican Radio.

He removed his shoes before entering the mosque with blue tiles on its walls. Standing next to him was the Grand Mufti, who explained about the Koranic verses illustrated on the stones pillars and the dome.

Ecumenism sin against faith

The pontiff also toured on Saturday the nearby Hagia Sophia, a Byzantine basilica which was turned into a mosque after the fall of Constantinople in the mid-15th century before being transformed into a museum.

The pontiff’s visit is being seen as an effort to foster inter-faith relations.

“Fanaticism and fundamentalism, as well as irrational fears which foster misunderstanding and discrimination, need to be countered by the solidarity of all believers,” the pope said Friday in a speech to Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and other political leaders on the first day of his pastoral visit to the cities of Ankara and Istanbul.

“It is essential that all citizens – Muslim, Jewish and Christian – both in the provision and practice of the law, enjoy the same rights and respect the same duties,” the pope added in his speech Friday. “They will then find it easier to see each other as brothers and sisters who are traveling the same path, seeking always to reject misunderstandings while promoting cooperation and concord. Freedom of religion and freedom of expression, when truly guaranteed to each person, will help friendship to flourish and thus become an eloquent sign of peace.” 

Hersey: Bergoglio Prays in Turkey’s Mosque, Takes off shoes, bows toward Mecca

                      WE WERE WARNED

Newchurch of Bergoglio

I saw also the relationship between the two popes… I saw how baleful (evil; harmful) would be the consequences of this false church. I saw it increase in size; heretics of every kind came into the city (of Rome) Once more I saw the Church of Peter was undermined by a plan evolved by the secret sect (Masonry), while storms were damaging it. I saw an apparition of the Mother of God, and she said that the tribulation would be very great!!

She added that these people must pray fervently with outstretched arms.They must pray above all for the Church of Darkness to leave Rome.”

The Church is in great danger!  I see that in this place (Rome) the Catholic Church is being so cleverly undermined, that there will hardly remain a hundred or so priests who have not been deceived. They all work for destruction, even the clergy. The great devastation is now at hand. The Church is completely isolated and as if completely deserted. It seems that everyone is running away… ( Rome is in Apostasy, Rome has lost the Faith), Masonry. 

Among the strangest things that I saw, were long processions of bishops. Their thoughts and utterances were made known to me through images issuing from their mouths. Their faults towards religion were shown by external deformities. A few had only a body, with a dark cloud of fog instead of a head. Others had only a head, their bodies and hearts were like thick vapors. Some were lame; others were paralytics; others were asleep or staggering.”

“I saw what I believe to be nearly all the bishops of the world, but only a small number were perfectly sound…”

“Then I saw that everything that pertained to Protestantism was gradually gaining the upper hand, and the Catholic religion fell into complete decadence.

“I saw that many pastors allowed themselves to be taken up with ideas that were dangerous to the Church. They were building a great, strange, and extravagant Church. Everyone was to be admitted in it in order to be united and have equal rights: Evangelicals, Catholics, sects of every description. Such was to be the new Church!!  

Ven. Anne Catherine Emmerich – (found to be incorrupt) 1774-1824

Another Warning!!!

jorge destroyer st francis prophecy

Shortly before he died, St. Francis of Assisi called together his followers and warned them of the coming troubles, saying:

“The time is fast approaching in which there will be great trials and afflictions; perplexities and dissensions, both spiritual and temporal, will abound; the charity of many will grow cold, and the malice of the wicked will increase.

The devils will have unusual power, the immaculate purity of our Order,and of others, will be so much obscured that there will be very few Christians who will obey the true Sovereign Pontiff and the Roman Church with loyal hearts and perfect charity. At the time of this tribulation a man, not canonically elected, will be raised to the Pontificate, who, by his cunning, will endeavor to draw many into error and death.”

Resist Heretic Bergoglio!

How Easy Will it be for ISIS to Conquer Rome??? Very Easy Bergoglio ‘Judas ‘ Will Invite Them!!

 Parce nobis, Domine!

Survey to poll Catholics in El Paso, nation about families, divorce, gays

St. Pius X in our time...

Bergoglio wants to hear what Catholics have to say about the challenging issues that families face every day and how the church can help.

And he wants to hear from those who sit in the pews as well as those who identify themselves as Catholics but don’t attend church. And he is not shying away from sensitive issues such as divorce, remarriage, civil marriages or same-sex relationships.

Catholics in El Paso and across the country are being asked to fill out a survey to help gauge beliefs on a variety of topics. There are 195 archdioceses or dioceses in the United States and thousands of Catholics have already submitted their replies.

In El Paso, people can go online or get a copy that will be collected and tabulated by Tepeyac Institute. The survey, available at www.tepeyacinstitute.com will be online through Sunday. Paper copies can be picked up at the Tepeyac Institute, 499 St. Matthews St., in the Lower Valley. Some churches also have paper copies of the survey available. The paper copies of the survey are due at Tepeyac by Thursday to give employees time to input data, Diocese officials said.

Jean Soto, interim assistant director of Tepeyac, said it’s a historic moment in the Catholic Church.

“The very fact that the entire laity is being asked to respond in it of itself is groundbreaking. The process is ground breaking,” Soto said. “The laity are being (told), ‘We want you to act as church because we are all the church and by giving us your experience, your understanding, your wisdom, and your faith on these issues.'”

The survey on the family, titled “The Vocation and Mission of the Family,” comes after a gathering of Catholic Church bishops with Pope Francis at the Vatican to discuss topics related to family and evangelization in October 2014.

“They talked about how the family can be a means of spreading the gospel of evangelism. There is a new phrase that is being called the Gospel of the Family, the emphasis is on the ability of healthy, thriving families to share the good news of the gospel,” Soto said.

The outcome of the synod was that it raised the question of how the Catholic church can help families become healthy and whole, knowledgable in their faith and able to live that out in an authentic way, Soto said.

In his synod summary, Francis said the survey was a matter of rethinking “with renewed freshness and enthusiasm, what revelation, transmitted in the Church’s faith, tells us about the beauty, the role and the dignity of the family.”

Francis added that they had one year to discern and “find concrete solutions to so many difficulties and innumerable challenges that families must confront.”

The survey, narrowed to 25 from 45 questions by the El Paso Diocese, is divided in three sections.

The first section is “Listening: The Context and the Challenges of the Family,” which includes questions about child care, outreach to the divorced, single parents, and unmarried couples living together.

The second section, “Looking at Christ: The Gospel of the Family,” asks questions about ways the church can help marriages. One of questions also asks respondents if they think divorced and remarried Catholics should be allowed to receive the Eucharist. It also asks whether divorced or remarried Catholics should be allowed to serve in ministries such as lectors.

The third section, “Confronting the Situation: Pastoral Perspectives,” asks how the Christian community can give pastoral attention to people who are gay. It also asks what could be done at the pastoral level to support marriage and if annulments should be easier and cheaper.

Soto, who is leading some focus groups on the survey, said the issue of remarried Catholics has been a challenging one for both religious leaders and Catholics in general.

“Questions about divorce and being civilly remarried weigh heavily on the mind of bishops and certainly Pope Francis,” she said.

She added, “in the focus group, when we came to this part on divorce and remarriage – that is where we got the most conversation. It seems like everyone knows someone who either is not able to receive communion even though they are upstanding members of the community or they know people who have left the Catholic church for that reason.”

Experts acknowledge it is a challenge for the church to meet the needs of people in these contemporary times while still upholding traditional doctrine.

“I think there’s an understanding that there are ways to be church that can include people who feel excluded from the church. And we are struggling to find those ways and remain faithful to the gospel,” Soto said.

Vatican expert John L. Allen, and author of “The Francis Miracle,” said he believes Francis is pushing the church toward the “most merciful possible way of applying traditional teachings.”

He added, “what is significant is that the pope is wanting to consult with the people before making a decision.”

Bergoglio The Anti-Pope

Allen, however, said it doesn’t mean that the pope would make any radical changes. (??)

“It’s always positive when people feel like the leader is interested in what they have to say. On the other hand, it might create a false or exaggerated sense for some to draw a conclusion that we are on the brink of radical change,” Allen said.

The survey responses will be summarized in a report that will be sent to the bishops from around the world and discussed at a synod, scheduled for October 2015, with Pope Francis in Rome.

____

The following are ways the Church might help families in difficult situations.

Are you aware of any projects, programs or ministries in the local Church that:

a: recognize God’s presence in family life

b: teach and establish sound relationships

c: promote social and economic policies useful to the family

d: help families with child care issues

e: help families with the elderly and family members who are chronically ill

f: address specific issues in the El Paso Catholic Dioceses like outreach to the divorced, single parents, unmarried couples living together

g: address specific issues in the El Paso Catholic Diocese that relate to our border, like helping those dealing with violence in Mexico?

h: Please list any other challenging situations for families that are not given above

Many of us received the gift of our Catholic faith within our families. (Yes or No statements)

a: I was told about the Catholic faith by my mother, father, or other close relative.

b: A family member taught me how to pray

c: My present family prays together

d: In addition to going to Mass my family participates in church activities during the week

e: I talk with my family about faith matters

f: Other ways that the faith is lived in my family:

Do you think that the following practices should be sponsored or permitted by the Diocese and/or parishes?

a: Forming support groups for cohabitating couples interested in remaining in contact with their church.

b: Inviting couples who are not sacramentally married to begin a journey toward the sacrament.

Source: El Paso Times

Pope Francis Just Declared This Murdered Archbishop a Martyr. Reaganites Should Be Embarrassed?

Archbishop Oscar Romero 8

For me Romero is a man of God, but the process has to be followed, and the Lord too has to give his sign.” But there is no question where this pope’s sympathies lie. The leftist saints come marching in.

Reaganites Should Be Embarrassed. After all, a number of prominent Reaganites and religious leaders in the U.S. embraced the man responsible for Romero’s death!

(New Republic) – Pope Francis has declared Salvadoran Archbishop Oscar Romero, who was murdered while celebrating Mass in 1980, a martyr. Like much of what Francis has done and said since ascending the papal throne, the decision could anger American conservatives. After all, a number of prominent Reaganites and religious leaders in the U.S. embraced the man responsible for Romero’s death.

In 1979, moderate military officers overthrew El Salvador’s strongarm ruler Carlos Humberto Romero. The archbishop was initially supportive of the government before realizing that the military’s abuses and the persecution of the poor would not cease. Seen as a hero within Latin America’s liberation theology movement, which sought to align the Church with the poor and oppressed, Romero grew concerned after reading reports that the U.S. was planning to send support to the Salvadoran military. He wrote a letter to President Jimmy Carter urging him to not intervene, arguing that U.S. aid, “rather than favoring greater justice and peace in El Salvador, will make injustice and repression against the organization of the people, who have been struggling for the respect of their most fundamental rights, even more acute.”

Romero was assassinated the following month. One week after his killing, the U.S. approved $5.7 million in emergency military aid, just as El Salvador’s bloody twelve-year civil war was getting underway.

The U.S. embassy had evidence that Roberto D’Aubuisson, an anti-Communist former army major whom Reaganites considered a Cold War ally, was behind the killing. The embassy handed this intelligence over the CIA, which kept it buried so that Congress would continue providing military aid to the El Salvadoran and Guatemalan governments. A U.N.-sponsored truth commission found in 1993 that D’Aubuisson “gave the order to assassinate the Archbishop and gave precise instructions to members of his security service, acting as a ‘death squad,’ to organize and supervise the assassination.”

It was eventually revealed by The New York Times that the Reagan administration knew more about the Salvadoran regime’s complicity and participation in atrocities than it had led Congress to believe. Soon after the truth commission published its findings, the Times reported that the “Reagan Administration withheld its own evidence of Mr. D’Aubuisson’s death squad activities from members of Congress who argued that Washington should have no dealings with terrorists.”

Suspicion that D’Aubuisson was involved in Romero’s death didn’t stop U.S. officials and other conservatives from praising him.

After D’Aubuisson entered politics in 1982, then-U.S. Ambassador to El Salvador Deane R. Hinton called D’Aubuisson a “fine young Democrat,” later declaring him “an intelligent man” and a “dynamic leader.” Senator Jesse Helms was an unabashed supporter, suggesting that D’Aubuission’s credentials as “free enterprise man” who was “deeply religious” weremore important than accusations that he murdered civilians. Elliott Abrams, then assistant secretary of state for Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs, told a congressional committee that the former army major was not an extremist because one would have to be “involved in murder” to earn that designation.

Members of the Religious Right also offered their support to D’Aubuisson in the 1980s. Pat Robertson claimed to have gone to dinner with D’Aubuisson, calling him a “very nice fellow.” D’Aubuisson was honored at a 1984 dinner at the Capitol Hill Club by a number of conservative groups, including the Moral Majority, the National Pro-Life Action Committee, and The Washington Times. He was presented a plaque for his “continuing efforts for freedom.” On another visit to Washington, D’Aubuisson was chaperoned around the city by Young Americans for Freedom.

One notable voice of dissent during this period was Robert E. White, the U.S. Ambassador to El Salvador from 1980-1981, who passed away last month. While serving as ambassador, he denounced the Salvadoran government and right-wing death squads, famously calling D’Aubuisson a “pathological killer.” White was dismissed from his post, but that didn’t quiet him: In 1984, he accused the Reagan administration of attempting to cover up D’Aubuisson’s involvement in Romero’s murder.

Source: New Republic

Related: Is being Catholic a prerequisite for sainthood?!

Francis unblocks: No doctrinal obstacles to beatification of liberation theology hero, Oscar Romero

Pope Francis Honors Óscar Romero, Salvadoran Archbishop, as Martyr!

Archbishop Óscar Romero timeline

Archbishop Oscar Romero (Communist sympathizer) is favored by Pope Francis. Pope said he was hoping for a swift beatification process. “For me Romero is a man of God,” the pontiff told journalists on the plane bringing him back from a trip to South Korea. “There are no doctrinal problems and it is very important that [the beatification] is done quickly!” – August 18, 2014

ROME — Pope Francis has formally ratified the martyrdom of the Salvadoran archbishop Óscar Romero, who was shot to death at the altar as he was saying Mass in 1980 in an act of “hatred for the faith,” the Vatican said on Tuesday.

The step opens the way for Archbishop Romero to be beatified — a process that had been blocked under Francis’s predecessors, Vatican watchers say, because of the archbishop’s leftist political stances.

The archbishop, a man of the poor who often denounced social disparities, violence and repression in his own country and throughout Latin America, remains much beloved among Catholics in the region, and Francis, the first Latin American pope, has been outspoken in his appreciation of the archbishop.

At the beginning of the civil war in El Salvador, Archbishop Romero angered the country’s right-wing military government by calling on soldiers to disobey orders to murder political opponents. He also wrote a letter to President Jimmy Carter pleading with him to cut off American military aid to El Salvador. The archbishop was killed by a right-wing death squad.

According to a 1993 United Nations commission, the murder was planned by former members of the security forces who had ties to Roberto D’Aubuisson, the former army major who founded the Nationalist Republican Alliance party, known as Arena. The party ruled El Salvador from 1989 until 2009.

The Vatican began considering Archbishop Romero for beatification in 1997, but his cause made little progress during the papacies of John Paul II and Benedict XVI because of his perceived association with liberation theology, Vatican watchers said. That movement, popular among some Catholic clergy in Latin America, called for the church to work for the social and economic liberation of the poor; some conservatives in the church rejected it as akin to communism.

Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, president of the Pontifical Council for the Family and the chief advocate for Archbishop Romero’s cause, acknowledged in a telephone interview on Tuesday that Archbishop Romero had been viewed by many over the years as a “bishop of the revolutionary left, of the Marxist culture.”

But “meticulous research erased all doubts and prejudices that many had within the church and in El Salvador,” Archbishop Paglia said, and “it was clear to us that killing a priest on the altar is a message for the whole church, a political message against a religious man.”

Archbishop Romero’s message stemmed directly from the Bible, he said, and “today Romero is an enormous help to Francis’s vision of the church — their voices sound like one, a poor church for the poor.”

Pope Francis unblocked Archbishop Romero’s cause in 2013, immediately after he succeeded Benedict, and he has spoken admiringly of the archbishop since then. In a general hearing in early January, Francis quoted one of Archbishop Romero’s last speeches, saying: “Giving life doesn’t only mean to be killed. Giving life, having the martyr’s spirit, means giving while doing our duty, in silence, in prayer, while we honestly fulfill our duty.”

Other Christian denominations have already honored Archbishop Romero; Lutherans celebrate him as a saint on the anniversary of his death, March 24, and Anglicans consider him a martyr.

Source: New York Times

Bergoglio Spells Disaster: 43 Philippine police commandos killed in a fierce battle with Muslim guerrillas!

The blessing of Bergoglio… Wherever Bergoglio goes Disaster follows.

muslim koran what they say about Jesus

Pope Francis has said there are limits to the freedom of expression, people’s faith must not be insulted… 

At least 43 Philippine police commandos were killed in a fierce battle with Muslim guerrillas after launching an assault in which they may have killed one of south-east Asia’s most-wanted terrorists, officials said on Monday.

A police Special Action Force member remained missing while 11 others were wounded in the day-long clashes on Sunday in Mamasapano town in Maguindanao province in the biggest single-day combat loss for the Philippine government in recent memory, officials said.

The interior secretary, Mar Roxas, called the commandos “fallen heroes” who sacrificed their lives to try to capture Malaysian bombing suspect Zulkifli bin Hir, or Marwan. The top terror suspect may have been killed by the commandos, he said.

Another top terror suspect, Abdul Basit Usman, managed to escape, according to Roxas.

Maguindanao Province, Philippine commandos killedPhilippine police commandos recover the bodies of their comrades on Monday. Photograph: Jeoffrey Maitem/Getty Images

After attacking Marwan, the police commandos came under fire from hardline Muslim insurgents in the marshy village of Tukanalipao while some strayed elsewhere and got entangled in a firefight with insurgents belonging to the Moro Islamic Liberation Front national police Deputy Director General Leonardo Espina said.

The United States has offered up to $5m (£3m) for Marwan’s capture and $1m for Usman. Both have been blamed by US and Philippine authorities for deadly bomb attacks and providing bomb-making training to al-Qaida-linked militants in the country’s south.

Source: The Guardian

Related: Scores of Philippine Police Officers Killed in Firefight With Rebels

MANILA — At least 43 police officers in the southern Philippines were killed during an attempt to capture one of Southeast Asia’s most wanted terrorism suspects, police and government officials said on Monday.

NY Times