The Heresy from Within

 

Are you paying attention? Have you been watching the Catholic Church wrestling with itself on being more relevant to the post-modernist world? In today’s Internet age, you have a ringside seat to this sad and sordid spectacle because news and commentary abound beyond what the talking heads or columnists in the mainstream media, who adore the current pope, will report.

To say that the barbarians are once more at the gates of Rome might be an insult to barbarians, many of whom may have had better family values and ethics than some of the despicable members of the Catholic clergy who have seduced and raped young boys, young girls, seminarians, conducted drug-fueled gay orgies in the shadow of St. Peter’s basilica, or who continue to maintain homosexual relationships with other priests or members of the laity without a worry that they will be reprimanded or defrocked; or other bishops and cardinals who have shielded and shuffled around the aforementioned pederasts, pedophiles, and rapists who then continued to prey on new victims in other parishes. No, the Roman Catholic Church is not suffering from an assault from an outside throng of barbarians running amok in Vatican City, rather it is under attack from demonic forces who wear clerical garb who are running amok within and spreading sin and heresy throughout the world in their wake.

On a flight from Brazil back to Rome in 2013, Pope Francis was confronted by reporters with questions about the active and militant, gay lobby (referred to most commonly as the Lavender Mafia) within the ranks of the Vatican hierarchy. The pope replied, “If a person is gay and seeks God and has good will, who am I to judge?” The pastoral guidance from St. Paul in Romans, Chapter One, apparently did not come to the pope’s mind (emphasis mine):

…because they exchanged God’s truth for a lie and have worshipped and served the creature instead of the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.That is why God abandoned them to degrading passions:why their women have exchanged natural intercourse for unnatural practices; and the men, in a similar fashion, too, giving up normal relations with women, are consumed with passion for each other, men doing shameful things with men and receiving in themselves due reward for their perversion. In other words, since they would not consent to acknowledge God, God abandoned them to their unacceptable thoughts and indecent behavior…

When the rest of the faithful cannot rely on the man who sits on the throne of Peter for summary judgments on matters of sin, grace, and proper behavior then where will they turn? Stand-up comedians? Politicians? News anchors? Bono? Martin Sheen? Nancy Pelosi? Michael Moore? Perhaps it might have been more to the point had the pope channeled living Saint Hillary and replied, “At this point, what difference does it make?”

To say that the pope’s response was a warning shot of post-modernist moral relativism across the bow of unwavering Catholic teaching that has navigated through the pitching and heaving seas of human history for two millennia and that had been responsible for the flourishing of western civilization, raises the question of just what ship the pope was on when he fired the “…who am I to judge?” shot.

All Souls’ Day will soon be upon us. In Catholic tradition, it’s the day set aside to pray for those who have departed the earth and those whose souls may be in Purgatory and haven’t been permitted to enter the gates of heaven. As admittedly a lapsed Catholic who has strayed from the faith since the mid-1970s; who has challenged and questioned many points of theology and doctrine but who still attempts to behave ethically, I am not happy with the dark human comedy that’s been unfolding in the Church. I am also compelled to ask whether this pope and those high-ranking clerics influencing him and charged with implementing his transformative papal agenda, are more concerned with relevancy, appeasement to the homosexual community, embracing socialists and Climate Change alarmists clamoring for wealth distribution, and appeasing the communist Chinese regime than they are with the precarious state of the souls who comprise the Church … including their own.

It seems to me that one brave cleric is concerned. Former Papal Nuncio, Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano in his third open letter on the current crisis of the Church emphasizes the peril that many souls in the Church face for eternal damnation if the Pope and his lieutenants continue to remain silent, do nothing to remove homosexuals in the clergy, and continue down the path to deconstruct the Church’s long-standing liturgical and doctrinal teaching and invite heresies. (emphasis mine)

To bear witness to corruption in the hierarchy of the Catholic Church was a painful decision for me, and remains so. But I am an old man, one who knows he must soon give an accounting to the Judge for his actions and omissions, one who fears Him who can cast body and soul into hell. A Judge who, even in his infinite mercy, will render to every person salvation or damnation according to what he has deserved. Anticipating the dreadful question from that Judge – “How could you, who had knowledge of the truth, keep silent in the midst of falsehood and depravity?” — what answer could I give?

I testified fully aware that my testimony would bring alarm and dismay to many eminent persons: churchmen, fellow bishops, colleagues with whom I had worked and prayed. I knew many would feel wounded and betrayed. I expected that some would in their turn assail me and my motives. Most painful of all, I knew that many of the innocent faithful would be confused and disconcerted by the spectacle of a bishop’s charging colleagues and superiors with malfeasance, sexual sin, and grave neglect of duty. Yet I believe that my continued silence would put many souls at risk, and would certainly damn my own. Having reported multiple times to my superiors, and even to the pope, the aberrant behavior of Theodore McCarrick, I could have publicly denounced the truths of which I was aware earlier. If I have some responsibility in this delay, I repent for that. This delay was due to the gravity of the decision I was going to take, and to the long travail of my conscience.

I have been accused of creating confusion and division in the Church through my testimony. To those who believe such confusion and division were negligible prior to August 2018, perhaps such a claim is plausible. Most impartial observers, however, will have been aware of a longstanding excess of both, as is inevitable when the successor of Peter is negligent in exercising his principal mission, which is to confirm the brothers in the faith and in sound moral doctrine. When he then exacerbates the crisis by contradictory or perplexing statements about these doctrines, the confusion is worsened.

Therefore, I spoke. For it is the conspiracy of silence that has wrought and continues to wreak great harm in the Church — harm to so many innocent souls, to young priestly vocations, to the faithful at large. With regard to my decision, which I have taken in conscience before God, I willingly accept every fraternal correction, advice, recommendation, and invitation to progress in my life of faith and love for Christ, the Church and the Pope.

As to the second silence, this very grave crisis cannot be properly addressed and resolved unless and until we call things by their true names. This is a crisis due to the scourge of homosexuality, in its agents, in its motives, in its resistance to reform. It is no exaggeration to say that homosexuality has become a plague in the clergy, and it can only be eradicated with spiritual weapons. It is an enormous hypocrisy to condemn the abuse, claim to weep for the victims, and yet refuse to denounce the root cause of so much sexual abuse: homosexuality. It is hypocrisy to refuse to acknowledge that this scourge is due to a serious crisis in the spiritual life of the clergy and to fail to take the steps necessary to remedy it.

Unquestionably there exist philandering clergy, and unquestionably they too damage their own souls, the souls of those whom they corrupt, and the Church at large. But these violations of priestly celibacy are usually confined to the individuals immediately involved. Philandering clergy usually do not recruit other philanderers, nor work to promote them, nor cover-up their misdeeds — whereas the evidence for homosexual collusion, with its deep roots that are so difficult to eradicate, is overwhelming. 

It is well established that homosexual predators exploit clerical privilege to their advantage. But to claim the crisis itself to be clericalism is pure sophistry. It is to pretend that a means, an instrument, is in fact the main motive.

In the current Youth Synod in Rome called by Pope Francis, there is compelling evidence based on reports, that a contingent of bishops and other clerics are attempting to incorporate language in the synod’s summary document signaling that the Church is accepting of LGBT lifestyles — regardless of St. Paul’s warning and admonition in Romans – Chapter One. If they are successful in doing so, it will be a move that will serve to further minimize the objection to homosexuality not just within the Catholic laity but more disturbingly within the clergy itself and be another small step to openly embrace the perversions of priests and nuns, some of whom continue to engage with several sexual partners or actively seduce younger Catholics but who, at the same time, will be relied upon to give spiritual and ethical guidance to young and older Catholics alike. I don’t know how this can be characterized as anything but heresy and an abomination.

A massive pillar of western civilization is leaning left and may be about to topple and break apart. The fact that this is happening in a climate where multiculturalists and post-modernist moral relativists throughout Europe hold sway in the political and media arenas; when successive waves of Muslim migrants have flooded into Europe and are bent on fundamental transformation and the elimination of remnant Christian symbols, churches, and customs; and when the blood-soaked ideology of socialism is rearing its head and capturing the imagination of ignorant, Marxist-indoctrinated young adults — is not coincidental but really speaks to the interconnectivity between these massive forces and paradigm shifts.

From John, Chapter 8:

To the Jews who believed in him, Jesus said: “If you make my word your home you will indeed be my disciples; you will come to know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

The Pope has counseled silence in the midst of this clergy pederasty/pedophilia crisis and has compared Archbishop Vigano to the Great Accuser (Satan). I’ll leave it to you to determine who is the more appropriate disciple of Christ.

This post was promoted to the Main Feed by a Ricochet Editor at the recommendation of Ricochet members. Like this post? Want to comment? Join Ricochet’s growing community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

There are 23 comments.

  1. Member

    Much to my chagrin my church is rapidly deteriorating. I noticed at Mass on Saturday night almost everyone had gray hair. The priest was walking with a cane.

    • #1
    • October 24, 2018, at 5:37 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  2. Member

    Well written Brian.

    • #2
    • October 24, 2018, at 5:49 PM PDT
    • 5 likes
  3. Member

    PHCheese (View Comment):

    Much to my chagrin my church is rapidly deteriorating. I noticed at Mass on Saturday night almost everyone had gray hair. The priest was walking with a cane.

    The parish we belonged to before moving to our current home was packed every Sunday, had long lines for the confessionals every Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning (three priests saying confessions), and people of all ages, especially young families with lots of kids (6 or more being common). Why? Because the pastor was solidly orthodox and frankly even aggressive in teaching the Catholic faith and not avoiding the “hard” teachings such as contraception, abortion, homosexuality, gay “marriage”, etc. The liturgy was reverent and the music was also reverent – none of that Marty Haugen/Dan Schutte/David Haas garbage.

    • #3
    • October 24, 2018, at 6:12 PM PDT
    • 14 likes
  4. Member
    Brian Watt Post author

    PHCheese (View Comment):

    Much to my chagrin my church is rapidly deteriorating. I noticed at Mass on Saturday night almost everyone had gray hair. The priest was walking with a cane.

    The last mass that I attended was for my uncle’s memorial service. The church was a converted small warehouse space in a strip mall. 

    • #4
    • October 24, 2018, at 6:14 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  5. Moderator

    Brian Watt: The pope replied, “If a person is gay and seeks God and has good will, who am I to judge?”

    “You’re the pope? The supreme pontiff? The true vicar of Christ, the head of the whole Church and father and teacher of all Christians; to you full power has been given to tend, rule, and govern the universal Church. According to the group of people that you lead, there is literally no one on the face of the planet more qualified to judge than you!”

    • #5
    • October 24, 2018, at 6:16 PM PDT
    • 9 likes
  6. Member

    Went to Tridentine mass in Quebec a few weeks. While the church was not full, it was certainly full of young families. My good friend that I was traveling with said that is common for the tridentine masses she attends.

    Église Catholique Saint-Zéphirin-de-Stadacona

     

    • #6
    • October 24, 2018, at 7:06 PM PDT
    • 7 likes
  7. Coolidge

    Commend your prose, speaking from the heart against those who with willful intent take advantage of innocence and whose nihilism exposes not only their concupiscence, but also their contempt for our way of life.

    It is sad to see the eminence of such a clown and the support that surrounds him.

    Such transparent subversion will make their house of glass return to dust after its fall against the rock.

    • #7
    • October 24, 2018, at 7:37 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  8. Member

    Brian Watt:

    As admittedly a lapsed Catholic who has strayed from the faith since the mid-1970s; who has challenged and questioned many points of theology and doctrine but who still attempts to behave ethically, I am not happy with the dark human comedy that’s been unfolding in the Church.

    Why not become a Reformation Christian, or an Eastern Orthodox one?

    • #8
    • October 24, 2018, at 9:21 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  9. Member

    Brian Watt: As admittedly a lapsed Catholic who has strayed from the faith since the mid-1970s; who has challenged and questioned many points of theology and doctrine but who still attempts to behave ethically, I am not happy with the dark human comedy that’s been unfolding in the Church.

    What struck me right off the bat about the third testimony of Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, was that he put this crisis into the perspective of the Mission of the Church: to give glory to God and to work for the salvation of souls. As a man of faith who fears the Lord, Archbishop Viganò not only spoke of his judgment before Christ but that of his brother bishops as well. He showed genuine concern for them – and especially for Pope Francis.

    Brian Watt (View Comment):
    The last mass that I attended was for my uncle’s memorial service. The church was a converted small warehouse space in a strip mall.

    I don’t know the story of why your faith has lapsed but I’ve learned from your passionate posts on the Church and your commentary on my posts on the Church that you have respect and concern and love for the Church. In these times, the Church desperately needs good men. There are many, many more good priests out there now than there are bad priests. There are good, young, orthodox priests serving good Novus Ordo parishes and there are good, young, orthodox priests serving TLM parishes (look for the FSSP). Come on back. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):
    Why not become a Reformation Christian, or an Eastern Orthodox one?

    Better to listen to this Saint Augustine:

    “No man can find salvation except in the Catholic Church. Outside the Catholic Church one can have everything except salvation. One can have honor, one can have the sacraments, one can sing alleluia, one can answer amen, one can have faith in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, and preach it too, but never can one find salvation except in the Catholic Church.” (Sermo ad Caesariensis Ecclesia plebem)

    If you have 10 minutes, take a read through this interview of philosophy professor Thomas Pink by Edward Pentin. To me it explains perfectly why the “pastoral approach”, or what the professor terms the “official theology”, of Pope Francis is so confusing to the faithful, and why we do at times have to reject that explanatory official theology as erroneous.

    As you journey with your faith, remember the words of Pope St. John Paul II: be not afraid.

    • #9
    • October 25, 2018, at 3:18 AM PDT
    • 6 likes
  10. Member

    The third Vigano testimony: for a change, a pastor who talks about saving souls

    “This is about souls,” Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano states solemnly in the third installment of his remarkable public testimony. This third letter, far more than the two that preceded it, is a pastoral message. Archbishop Vigano explains that he has spoken out because he is concerned about the salvation of souls, and he exhorts other prelates to do the same.

    Why is this pastoral tone so unusual? Why is it shocking to hear a bishop speaking about the possibility of damnation, about the ultimate importance of saving souls? Isn’t that what bishops are supposed to do?

    Unfortunately, Archbishop Vigano’s tone is shocking because it is unfamiliar. Deep down we know that this is how bishops should talk, but we have not heard them talk this way. And that’s an important part of the problem that he is addressing.

    <snip>

    The archbishop recognizes, in this third letter, that his testimony has exacerbated serious divisions within the Church. “Yet I believe that my continued silence would put many souls at risk, and would certainly damn my own,” he explains. Moreover, he observes that the divisions already existed; he did not create them. On the contrary, he is facing the reality that most— all?—of his fellow bishops would prefer to ignore.

    So no, the archbishop warns his colleagues: “You too are faced with a choice.” He continues:

    You can choose to withdraw from the battle, to prop up the conspiracy of silence and avert your eyes from the spreading of corruption. You can make excuses, compromises and justification that put off the day of reckoning. You can console yourselves with the falsehood and the delusion that it will be easier to tell the truth tomorrow, and then the following day, and so on.

    On the other hand, you can choose to speak. You can trust Him who told us, “the truth will set you free.”

    Is it that simple? Can our pastors lead the Church out of this mess, simply by speaking out, by telling the unvarnished truth? I think that they can. The power of Archbishop Vigano’s pastoral candor is telling.

    • #10
    • October 25, 2018, at 3:32 AM PDT
    • 5 likes
  11. Member

    Scott Wilmot

    How did we get this guy? What do we know, other than physical weakness, about why Benedict retired? What has George Weigel written since this latest crisis?

    Weigel had strong advice to John Paul in the first US sex abuse crisis, but JP II was already very feeble. In “Lessons in Hope” written before this latest public exchange, he said JPII asked him about McCarrick and exchanged glances with his private secretary when Weigel said he didn’t see much of McCarrick. My impression is that they knew something was deeply wrong already.

    • #11
    • October 25, 2018, at 6:40 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  12. Member
    Brian Watt Post author

    I Walton (View Comment):

    Scott Wilmot

    How did we get this guy? What do we know, other than physical weakness, about why Benedict retired? What has George Weigel written since this latest crisis?

    Weigel had strong advice to John Paul in the first US sex abuse crisis, but JP II was already very feeble. In “Lessons in Hope” written before this latest public exchange, he said JPII asked him about McCarrick and exchanged glances with his private secretary when Weigel said he didn’t see much of McCarrick. My impression is that they knew something was deeply wrong already.

    Here’s an informative video on the group that actively supported and campaigned for the ascendence of Jorge Bergoglio to the chair of St. Peter.

    • #12
    • October 25, 2018, at 6:49 AM PDT
    • 5 likes
  13. Member

    Brian Watt

    Wow, thanks, thats a lot of meat. Fascinating. Who are these two guys?

    • #13
    • October 25, 2018, at 8:15 AM PDT
    • Like
  14. Member
    Brian Watt Post author

    I Walton (View Comment):

    Brian Watt

    Wow, thanks, thats a lot of meat. Fascinating. Who are these two guys?

    Background on Dr. Taylor Marshall here.

    Re: Timothy Gordon: Timothy J. Gordon studied philosophy in Pontifical graduate universities in Europe, taught it at Southern Californian community colleges, and then went on to law school. He holds degrees in literature, history, philosophy, and law. Currently, he resides in central California with his wife and five children, where he writes and teaches philosophy and theology. He is the author of Catholic Republic: Why America Will Perish without Rome (Dangerous Books, 2018).

    • #14
    • October 25, 2018, at 9:12 AM PDT
    • 1 like
  15. Member

    PHCheese (View Comment):

    Much to my chagrin my church is rapidly deteriorating. I noticed at Mass on Saturday night almost everyone had gray hair. The priest was walking with a cane.

    Most young people have plans on Saturday night. They sleep in too, so don’t look for them at the 7:30 Sunday morning Mass either.

    Your best best to spot the elusive young Catholic in his native habitat is to try a late morning Sunday Mass, or better still a Sunday evening Mass if there’s one in your neck of the woods.

    • #15
    • October 26, 2018, at 11:58 AM PDT
    • Like
  16. Member
    Brian Watt Post author

    From the “Who Woulda Thunk? Department — The Vatican hierarchy heaved a sigh of relief when they discovered this did not take place in Rome:

    • #16
    • October 26, 2018, at 12:48 PM PDT
    • Like
  17. Member

    Scott Wilmot (View Comment):

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):
    Why not become a Reformation Christian, or an Eastern Orthodox one?

    Better to listen to this Saint Augustine:

    “No man can find salvation except in the Catholic Church. Outside the Catholic Church one can have everything except salvation. One can have honor, one can have the sacraments, one can sing alleluia, one can answer amen, one can have faith in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, and preach it too, but never can one find salvation except in the Catholic Church.” (Sermo ad Caesariensis Ecclesia plebem)

    Even presuming Augustine means the same thing by “Catholic Church” that contemporary Roman Catholics mean, he still doesn’t answer the question.

    It seems unlikely that “a lapsed Catholic . . . who has challenged and questioned many points of theology and doctrine” accepts the doctrine of the infallibility of the Roman Magisterium.

    One might still think that the Roman Catholic Church has direct continuity with the Apostles and Christ, that we need an institution to interpret the Bible for us, and that the Roman Catholic Church is the best interpreter. But without Magisterial infallibility, this position makes one a natural fit in a Catholic-friendly Anglicanism.

    Shift the positions on Apostolic continuity, on who is the best interpreter, etc., and it may make perfect sense to be an Anglican of another stripe, a Southern Baptist, a Russian Orthodox, or something else.

    • #17
    • October 26, 2018, at 4:37 PM PDT
    • Like
  18. Member

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    Scott Wilmot (View Comment):

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):
    Why not become a Reformation Christian, or an Eastern Orthodox one?

    Better to listen to this Saint Augustine:

    “No man can find salvation except in the Catholic Church. Outside the Catholic Church one can have everything except salvation. One can have honor, one can have the sacraments, one can sing alleluia, one can answer amen, one can have faith in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, and preach it too, but never can one find salvation except in the Catholic Church.” (Sermo ad Caesariensis Ecclesia plebem)

    Even presuming Augustine means the same thing by “Catholic Church” that contemporary Roman Catholics mean, he still doesn’t answer the question.

    It seems unlikely that “a lapsed Catholic . . . who has challenged and questioned many points of theology and doctrine” accepts the doctrine of the infallibility of the Roman Magisterium.

    One might still think that the Roman Catholic Church has direct continuity with the Apostles and Christ, that we need an institution to interpret the Bible for us, and that the Roman Catholic Church is the best interpreter. But without Magisterial infallibility, this position makes one a natural fit in a Catholic-friendly Anglicanism.

    Shift the positions on Apostolic continuity, on who is the best interpreter, etc., and it may make perfect sense to be an Anglican of another stripe, a Southern Baptist, a Russian Orthodox, or something else.

    Augustine absolutely did answer the question as to why be a Catholic. Because outside the Catholic Church there is no salvation. You can perform any kind of mental gymnastics you want, but it’s as simple as that.

    • #18
    • October 26, 2018, at 5:01 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  19. Member

    Scott Wilmot (View Comment):

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    Scott Wilmot (View Comment):

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):
    Why not become a Reformation Christian, or an Eastern Orthodox one?

    Better to listen to this Saint Augustine:

    “No man can find salvation except in the Catholic Church. Outside the Catholic Church one can have everything except salvation. One can have honor, one can have the sacraments, one can sing alleluia, one can answer amen, one can have faith in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, and preach it too, but never can one find salvation except in the Catholic Church.” (Sermo ad Caesariensis Ecclesia plebem)

    Even presuming Augustine means the same thing by “Catholic Church” that contemporary Roman Catholics mean, he still doesn’t answer the question.

    It seems unlikely that “a lapsed Catholic . . . who has challenged and questioned many points of theology and doctrine” accepts the doctrine of the infallibility of the Roman Magisterium.

    One might still think that the Roman Catholic Church has direct continuity with the Apostles and Christ, that we need an institution to interpret the Bible for us, and that the Roman Catholic Church is the best interpreter. But without Magisterial infallibility, this position makes one a natural fit in a Catholic-friendly Anglicanism.

    Shift the positions on Apostolic continuity, on who is the best interpreter, etc., and it may make perfect sense to be an Anglican of another stripe, a Southern Baptist, a Russian Orthodox, or something else.

    Augustine absolutely did answer the question as to why be a Catholic. Because outside the Catholic Church there is no salvation. You can perform any kind of mental gymnastics you want, but it’s as simple as that.

    The immediate point is that he did not answer my question about Mr. Watt’s theology.

    Respecting Augustine interpretation, the best I can say is–not today. I have six kids and 170 students and I’m tired!

    • #19
    • October 26, 2018, at 5:35 PM PDT
    • Like
  20. Member
    Brian Watt Post author

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):

    Scott Wilmot (View Comment):

    Saint Augustine (View Comment):
    Why not become a Reformation Christian, or an Eastern Orthodox one?

    Better to listen to this Saint Augustine:

    “No man can find salvation except in the Catholic Church. Outside the Catholic Church one can have everything except salvation. One can have honor, one can have the sacraments, one can sing alleluia, one can answer amen, one can have faith in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, and preach it too, but never can one find salvation except in the Catholic Church.” (Sermo ad Caesariensis Ecclesia plebem)

    Even presuming Augustine means the same thing by “Catholic Church” that contemporary Roman Catholics mean, he still doesn’t answer the question.

    It seems unlikely that “a lapsed Catholic . . . who has challenged and questioned many points of theology and doctrine” accepts the doctrine of the infallibility of the Roman Magisterium.

    One might still think that the Roman Catholic Church has direct continuity with the Apostles and Christ, that we need an institution to interpret the Bible for us, and that the Roman Catholic Church is the best interpreter. But without Magisterial infallibility, this position makes one a natural fit in a Catholic-friendly Anglicanism.

    Shift the positions on Apostolic continuity, on who is the best interpreter, etc., and it may make perfect sense to be an Anglican of another stripe, a Southern Baptist, a Russian Orthodox, or something else.

    I can only speak for myself. I don’t presume to speak for other or for all “lapsed” Catholics. I like to think that I have questioned points of theology and doctrine over the years on points of logic without animus but more for understanding. There are some Catholics who make it a point to openly defy Church teaching, particularly some political figures, who use their ability to speak publicly about their defiance or routinely and proudly express their warped interpretations. One former Speaker of the House comes to mind. Beyond that I don’t make it a practice to label individuals in my daily life as either “good” or “bad” Catholics or whether they follow the dictates of the Church with varying degrees of fidelity. That is their business, not mine. I can’t look into their hearts or know how they behave. And I don’t wear a Roman collar or serve as their confessor. I have enough to deal with on my own and a great deal to study, mull over, and explore before I pass from this life.

    With respect, I wouldn’t be so quick as to presume what the characteristics or distinct features of my particular belief system are (I’m still grappling with that myself); or whether if I don’t accept all the pronouncements or decisions that come out of Rome, that I am rejecting “magisterial” or papal infallibility. Popes, cardinals, bishops, priests, and nuns are human beings. Human beings make mistakes. Human beings can stray from Christ’s teaching. Human beings sin and commit evil acts. They have done so in the past and sadly and frustratingly many are doing so now.

    This Pope, rather than being responsive to questions, calls for silence and demonizes one in particular who may be much more faithful to Christ than he is. Francis has also been inconsistent in punishing some clerics for their abhorrent or grossly negligent acts while promoting others or leaving them in place – or continue to rely on them for their counsel. Today, there are hundreds, perhaps thousands of clerics, who need to be excommunicated and defrocked and in some cases turned over to law enforcement. I don’t see this happening in any kind of consistent or comprehensive way. I don’t even see the Curia dealing with it or willing to deal with it. Instead, I’ve been witnessing a lot of deflection and cover-up, and a warm embrace for some of those who are destroying the Church from within, specifically the militant homosexual lobby.

    Finally, I’m not shopping around for a particular religion to be affiliated with. I’m a baptized and confirmed Catholic – and admittedly not as faithful as I should be – who has a plethora (yes, a plethora) of questions. But what’s happening in the Church should be shocking and disturbing to any decent human being. It certainly shocks me.

    • #20
    • October 26, 2018, at 5:40 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  21. Member

    Brian Watt (View Comment):

    There are some Catholics who make it a point to openly defy Church teaching, particularly some political figures, who use their ability to speak publicly about their defiance or routinely and proudly express their warped interpretations. One former Speaker of the House comes to mind.

    Indeed. Not to mention former a Presidential candidate, a former VP, etc.

    . . . But what’s happening in the Church should be shocking and disturbing to any decent human being. It certainly shocks me.

    I dig!

    • #21
    • October 26, 2018, at 5:57 PM PDT
    • Like
  22. Member

    Brian Watt (View Comment):

    I like to think that I have questioned points of theology and doctrine over the years on points of logic without animus but more for understanding.

    Are we talking about faith seeking understanding? Very good!

     

    • #22
    • October 26, 2018, at 5:57 PM PDT
    • Like
  23. Member

    Brian Watt (View Comment):

    With respect, I wouldn’t be so quick as to presume what the characteristics or distinct features of my particular belief system are (I’m still grappling with that myself); . . .

    Indeed. Nor would it be prudent to presume much about what I’m presuming.

    It is a point of logic that if something false is formally taught by the Magisterium which claims infallibility, then Magisterial infallibility is also false.

    Someone who rejects such a formal doctrine must also reject Magisterial infallibility (if he is sufficiently informed and logical).

    I did not know for sure, and still do not know, whether you do indeed reject something you know to be formally taught by the Magisterium. That is why I asked why you remain a Catholic.

    You did say that you challenge many points of Catholic theology, and it does seem to me very likely that someone who does that would reject at least one point he knows to be formally taught by the Magisterium.

    However, if “challenged” was meant very loosely as something like faith seeking understanding, then that answers my question well enough.

    • #23
    • October 26, 2018, at 5:58 PM PDT
    • Like