Catholic writer analyzes Pope’s interview, takes exception

Is Pope Francis a wishy-washy spineless pope? Perhaps a pawn, to be used by the liberals inside and outside the Church? Does he see what others see happening in our Church? Does it bother him?

I have a very dear Catholic friend who is freaking out because I am “having issues” with Pope Francis. It’s not that I don’t WANT to like him and think highly of him, I do. I really, really do. But… it’s just not happening for me.

I tried to give it time after the whole “Holy Week Debacle”[Muslim women foot washing etc]… he was ‘new’, he was a “different kind of pope”… he “needed time”… Well he still hasn’t grown on me, instead I have more issues now with him than I did months ago! That is not to say, I’ve tossed in the towel, I haven’t. I will continue to pray for him, my Church and myself to come to some sort of peace with “my issues with Pope Francis”.

My most recent “issues” (like oh so many other Catholics out there) are from his interview. *sigh*. Here are my thoughts on what the Pope said in his recent American Magazine interview.

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  1. “’Vatican II was a re-reading of the Gospel in light of contemporary culture,’ says the pope.”

    If this quotation and attribution is accurate, it pretty well encapsulates what was and is wrong with Vatican II.

    What “light” has “contemporary culture” provided to the eternal and spiritual verities in decades? Latter 20th-21st century “culture” is, in the main, a culture of darkness and chaos. How does one effectively re-read, or even read, the Gospel in such a toxic ambience?

    What follows the quotation I cited, above, is a paragraph of illogic and self-contradiction. Its reasoning rapidly goes all over the board and, finally, overboard: there to risk drowning in even more troubled waters.

    Once Francis begins to extemporize, his flaws as an intellect and Churchman become magnified and even more evident.

  2. Well folks we could hardly allow this “article” to go unchallenged could we? 🙂

    Where to start really?
    Firstly the author says he likes the pope but just finds it hard to agree with his pontificate or what he says especially regarding Vatican 2 and its results on the Church!
    Well hey-diddle diddle! What a loada of Crap!
    As a Roman Catholic and in the overwhelming majority of Catholics let me restate here (I know Mark will disagree but I will deal with that issue later) Vatican Two was and is “in its light” none other than the “light of the Holy Spirit”. This is attested too by every post V2 Pontiff including perhaps the greatest theologian the Church has produced in centuries.
    How is that possible the author asks? In his critique the Church has failed to show the way the truth and the life!
    Deep sigh . .deep deep sigh from me here!
    First Vatican Two in its liturgy has allowed and encouraged Scripture and the use of varied scriptures as never before. Pre V2 that was never allowed and the Gospels along with the scriptures remained singular and unchanged. The vernacular has allowed the Mass and its meaning to become available to the majority and not simply the privileged few.
    Secondly, as Francis points out it (V2) has met with universal agreement and acceptance within the Church from its Bishops.
    Those that disagreed like the heretic Lefebvre are excommunicate and can go to their perdition for their wilful disobedience!
    I recall Padre Pio’s horror at his clerical brothers and sisters that chose to disobey their lawful superiors. He famously stated that he would jump from an upstairs window if he was asked rather than disobey them. That the clerics that disobey their lawful superiors are playing with their own salvation!
    Thirdly the notion that the Church has lost its way because of V2 which has led to the lack of priests is absurd! Every western traditional style of worship has seen a decrease in the number of clerics. The Protestant churches, orthodox and others in the western capitalist free world have all experienced fall in numbers of clerical admin etc. To imagine that V2 is responsible is not logical therefore but if we really want to understand this phenomena we must look to how in some catholic circles the doors were closed to non-catholics! Inter religious fighting and scandal have always been present in the Church but now we reap the cost of these errors! Vatican Two (as Pope Francis suggests) merely offers new possibilities of engaging the world today.
    Fourthly,the idea that the author can offer a critique to the Popes theology by quoting scripture at him and “reminding” him of Pauls letters is an insult to the thinking man! What a load of rubbish! Who does this person think he is? This is the sort of Proud arrogance that would question Our Lord and his Beatitudes because Scripture says this or that in this part so you don’t know what you are talking about Jesus!
    A load of Rubbish but hardly surprising from this absurd individual! I find it quite sickening that supposed Catholics can presume to critique the pope as if he was in kindergarten! The Pope knows full well about St Paul he is simply reminding the faithful that prudence and HUMILITY require them to be tactful and listen to what he asks of them and not spout on about what they consider is a flaw in his theology! It really is UNBELIEVABLE!!!!
    Fifthly, The pope restated Homosexual acts as wrong he simply reminded the faithful????? that Gay People are to be Loved and welcomed into Gods presence! That has ALWAYS been the teaching of the Church and I think the Pope well knows that .. don’t we all? Apparently the author thinks otherwise! Disgusting!
    Sixthly, It is not for catholics to presume to instruct the Pontiff on ways to behave and it is a sin . .yes a Sin . .even a Mortal Sin ? to suggest that any person should denounce another as a sinner about to go to hell to their face. That is unchristian and uncatholic and as far from the God I WORSHIP as anything I could imagine! It is a sin therefore that author published this point asking the Pope to stand up and point the finger at what the author considers are sinners!
    Seventhly, The pope reminds us that abortion, homosexuality etc should be in context! The author then shows why I dislike the article so much! He is a Voris supporter and quotes that vile individual!
    That sums up EVERYTHING that is WRONG with this article. It is a complete Sham! Its disregard of Pope Francis as the True Pope, The man on earth who enjoys Christ’s Favour and the Lawful successor of Peter.
    When we think or write about the Pope we are bound as proper God fearing Catholics to remember that fact.
    The Church asks that Catholics do not scandalise the Church by implying this sort of anti-pope propaganda because it is by its nature diabolical and sinful!
    Doug is right to highlight it because it is typical of everything that is grumpy, mean minded and spiteful in the Church. It hides behind the notion of Oh we really do like the Pope but spews on about its heretical and as I have noted above Sinful statements that refuse to accept graciously the comments of this lovely and rightful Pontiff. Basically I can have no further truck with this type of abortion as it does make me quite sick. I am sorry that may offend or shock some people here but hey that’s the way it goes sometimes.

    I shall try and reply to Mark later, after I have taken a strong drink to calm my outraged nerves!

    • “I shall try and reply to Mark later, after I have taken a strong drink to calm my outraged nerves!”

      Just don’t drink and drive. You might spill some.

  3. Mark!
    A reply of sorts, I have already done the article above but I reply on a few points you raised as you may be aware.

    “What “light” has “contemporary culture” provided to the eternal and spiritual verities in decades? Latter 20th-21st century “culture” is, in the main, a culture of darkness and chaos. How does one effectively re-read, or even read, the Gospel in such a toxic ambience?”

    Firstly Mark, the Church continues. That is important because we often forget that central point of faithfulness and loyalty owed in fides to our Catholic Church. The initial veritas is that Christ died and Christ is Risen and upon that Supernatural Truth and Revelation is based the Church entire.
    When we imagine culture around us we can easily fall into the negative and dismiss our world as violent, rotten and commercial. In the last few decades especially since the end of world war two we have seen an explosion of commercial interests and the capitalisation of the markets into a global village of sorts. (this idea is not unchallenged because outside our cosy western world a huge amount of humanity remains in poverty and unable to access western markets). Nevertheless, in our western world there appears to be a universal breakdown in morality, social care and the rise of divorce, adultery, homosexual partnerships and now marriages. The list if we look for it is seemingly endless and one can be forgiven for imagining darkness fills our Contemporary culture and there simply is no light whatsoever and if there is it has been denied and getting progressively dimmer in the last decades. The Gospels have failed and seem to harken nothing more than silence.
    Pope Francis however, and the wider Church rejects the obvious and even chooses to ignore the prophets of doom. Why?
    The answer is probably obvious or should be. They are not bonkers nor have they lost their sanity in some make-believe fantasy of pretending everything is fine. The Pope well knows what is happening in the world, he has enough to remind him everywhere if he should forget. No, the Pope reminds us that The Church continues.
    Our Catholic Church is not of this world, neither made by or grown from it. Our Church is divine and it continues. The Gospels are proclaimed in a toxic atmosphere but this was always so. The early Church faced state funded persecutions that would make anything we think of as oppressive today into a Disney World! The Catholic Church continues to Live and Breath and grow. Globally the Church is still a growing Church and if it is attacked in some lands for proclaiming its mission then that is to be expected. It is not of this world nor can it be so the World and the darkness of ignorance will always hate the light of truth.
    If this is correct? Our faith teaches us it is then the Pope statement is correct.

    “’Vatican II was a re-reading of the Gospel in light of contemporary culture,’ says the pope.”

    The Pope restates to some that moan on about Vatican 2 that it faced up to the modern world to engage better with it. Even popes such as Pius 12 were well aware that a new Council was required and would cause a revolution in the Church. Ok it has done that and some people (here I am in critique of the Lefebvre brigade) choose to see the Popes as anti-Catholic and no longer deserving full obedience. They “know” that Christ rejects the popes and choose to offer critiques of the Holy Office as they see fit.
    My denouncement above over the “article” is because whilst it claims the author “really really likes Pope Francis” his words betray his infidelity and his attack is proven as untrue on several matters.

    What follows the quotation I cited, above, is a paragraph of illogic and self-contradiction. Its reasoning rapidly goes all over the board and, finally, overboard: there to risk drowning in even more troubled waters.
    Once Francis begins to extemporize, his flaws as an intellect and Churchman become magnified and even more evident.

    You are having a laugh at our expense?
    I say above in reply to the article notions of absurdity about the author “pontificating” on what Pope Francis may understand!
    The Pope is the captain of the Ship and we are the crew. It is silly even stupid to presume that we know how to steer the ship better than the captain. It is bordering on sinful presumption to imagine so.

    I do not want to attack anyone in my reply here so I have tried to restate that little fact that I mention several times in this reply.
    The Church Continues.
    All the wackiest doomsters and their ill imagined vociferous clanging will not over come that central fact. If we look at the Church in a historical fashion we will be quite surprised by the rough seas it has already negotiated and surpassed in its that history. The Church continues. The question is finally how does our own fidelity stand up to that fact and do we understand that God himself is with us every step of the way? If that is true as Our Faith always reminds us then we shall not be overcome by fear or cynicism over where we think the Pope will take us.
    He is our Pope and both theologically sound and intelligent. Sanctified by the grace of his office we will do well to pray for him and stop imaging that he is a fool or incompetent or somebody that is not as wise as we!

    🙂 That is what Scampt22 thinks anyway!

    • Not enough hours in the day, so I will remind you only of the following: The JP-II excommunications of Lefebvre and the bishops he consecrated were all revoked by B-XVI. Knowing that, will you persist in your notion that they can “go to their perdition”?

  4. Mark,
    no the excommunication was lifted by B16 because he wished to give the live bishops time to recant and come back to the Catholic Church. He points out that they are not in union with the Church ie they are outside the Ship and authority of the Church. Therefore they remain excommunicate by being in mortal sin because of their refusal to accept the Supreme Authority of the Pope and Magisterium!

    My personal opinion of that criminal Lefebvre is because in any study of the Saints lives something clear emerges about them and the State of the Damned. That is about OBEDIENCE.
    All the saints were obedient as Christ was unto death. Indeed the point is exceptional where in the angel confirms to Bosco that disobedience is the greatest sin and first act against God.

    My assertion is a simple one. That any person, bishop or clergy that is a member of the Catholic Church may not break away from obedience. That a great majority of the damned are so because of their breach of Obedience!
    In effect Lefebvre refused to accept Papal or Magisterium authority and whilst he claimed he was still Catholic led others into this mortal sin of disobedience! Even when Paul 6 stated the Council was the Will of the Holy Spirit (at that moment it was no longer a human matter and all catholics should sit up and accept this most grave announcement. To disobey is in effect to reject that Spirit!!!) that wicked man that evil Lefebvre refused to bow before his head bishop.
    In effect he publicly rejects the Papal Authority and sets himself up as its equal. This is disobedience and the one thing I am absolutely certain of over all others is that it was a mortal sin. That wicked bishop led others astray and they too are in danger of their salvation!!!!!

    That is why I suggest politely but with forced urgency the fact that these wicked men are damnable!

    • To paraphrase you from another thread: I stand by what I have written and feel no need to further articulate or defend it. Historical facts speak for themselves, and need neither verification nor validation from me.

      Therefore—as is more often the case than not—we agreeably agree to disagree here. I, for one, look forward to our next island of agreement on an issue, rather than on the cessation of “hostilities”.:-)

      • 🙂 No No No Mark. . we do not have hostilities we have you misunderstanding me! 🙂

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