Category: Pope Francis

9

To save the Church, my will be done

What must be done? Perhaps we should create another Church for things to work out? Well, that experiment has already been undertaken and has already failed (…) The crisis, caused by the many cases of clerical abuse, urges us to regard the Church as something almost unacceptable, which we must now take into our own hands and redesign. But a self-made Church cannot constitute hope. — Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI’s essay on the abuse crisis...

19

Dangerous Parallels

One of the things that the anti-Francis Catholics use as a defense is that the Pope is “unclear” or “confusing.” Therefore, they say, it’s not their fault if they think he’s in error and accuse him of heresy. He should just speak clearly and there wouldn’t be this sort of problem. They claim that his predecessors never had this problem with being misunderstood, therefore it must be his fault. I find that claim bizarre. Catholic...

27

Dr. Peters’ deer & hunter: death penalty & the inversion of roles

In June 17th, Cardinal Dolan posted the following on Twitter: Link: https://twitter.com/CardinalDolan/status/1140621061211529217 This tweet (as accurate as it is) prompted a wild discussion in social media, since there are many Catholics who are unwilling to assent to the recent Catechetical revision on the Death Penalty, from which this tweet flows. In this context, Dr. Edward Peters has chimed in with this article, where he claims the Cardinal’s tweet to be ill-advised, because it might contradict...

35

Death penalty – The Gen 9:6 objection

One of the most common scriptural arguments used by death penalty dissenters revolves around Gen 9:6. In fact, the most foundational book for their position, written by notable death penalty counter-apologist Edward Feser, borrows its title from that biblical quote. This biblical excerpt refers to the so-called Noahide Laws, given by God to Noah after the flood as an “eternal covenant.” According to this specific law, the killing of a human being would demand retribution...

6

You Will Not Become Like the Roots

There is a trend in Pope Francis criticism that makes a big deal about the fact that “anything [the pope says] can be made to sound orthodox”. I’ve seen Feser and now Dan Hitchens bringing it up as if it were a profound point. In an article called “Pope Francis Forgets” Hitchens says: practically any statement can be reconciled with Church teaching, if you try hard enough. Give me a minute, and I can probably...

21

Links: Pius X vs Francis; Cardinal Burke; Abp Gregory ordains 10 in DC

Happy Trinity Sunday, and Happy Father’s day! Today Pope Francis visited the city of Camerino in Italy, which was struck by earthquakes 3 years ago that took the lives of nearly 300 people. Vatican News reports that in his homily, he spoke about healing woulds and rebuilding after such a tragic event: “Remembering is a key word for life”, said Pope Francis. “Remembering gives us the strength not to surrender”. The Pope admitted that bad...

31

Savor the Harmony of the Holy Spirit

This morning in his homily on the feast of Pentecost, Pope Francis spoke at length about the work of the Holy Spirit. Excerpt: The Holy Spirit does not bring only harmony within us but also among us. He makes us Church, building different parts into one harmonious edifice. Saint Paul explains this well when, speaking of the Church, he often repeats a single word, “variety”: varieties of gifts, varieties of services, varieties of activities” (1 Cor 12:4-6). We differ in the variety of our qualities...

26

In-Flight presser from Romania: Francis on Tradition and Benedict

UPDATE 6/3/19 CNA has published an English translation of the entire press conference. Here are Francis’s comments in fuller context. On ecumenism: I always have this idea: Ecumenism is not reaching the end of the game, of the discussion. Ecumenism is walking together, walking together, praying together… The ecumenism of prayer. In history, we have the ecumenism of blood. When they killed Christians they did not ask: Are you Catholic? Are you Orthodox? Are you...

61

“I pray for them because they are wrong”

Pope Francis recently gave a 40-minute interview to a Mexican TV station, the full transcript of which has not been released in English (full Spanish transcript here). Several English-language outlets have translated portions, including America magazine, CNA, and Vatican News. Much is covered in the wide-ranging interview, including abortion, immigration, sexual abuse, Amoris Laetitia, homosexuality, China, Theodore McCarrick, and Archbishop Viganò. This interview also contains what appear to be his first public comments on the...

43

The Harmony of Amoris Laetitia and Veritatis Splendor

You often find the charge among critics of Pope Francis that his apostolic exhortation, Amoris Laetitia, is opposed to Pope John Paul’s encyclical Veritatis Splendor. The differences between the two are exaggerated in order to set these two documents of the papal magisterium against each other; Amoris Laetitia against Veritatis Splendor, Pope John Paul II against Pope Francis, Pope Francis supposedly against tradition. Veritatis Splendor, according to this narrative, is the strong, bold, defense of...

6

Our Father

For the past week, and up until just a couple days before Pentecost, the Gospel readings for daily Mass are from John’s recounting of the Last Supper. Here Jesus repeatedly speaks about, and prays to, “the Father.” I want to step back and reflect on that for a minute. God is completely and utterly beyond us. Take a second and try to imagine something, anything, that isn’t bound by space, time, and matter. We can’t...

39

Why we do what we do

Back in 2017, when I began planning this website, many of my fellow Pope Francis-supporting friends weren’t entirely enthusiastic about my idea. After all, why should I give any attention at all to the pope’s detractors? Doing so, they asserted, would give credence to their claims and conspiracy theories, as well as their faulty understanding of the Magisterium and papal primacy. Wouldn’t it be better to simply ignore them and let them fade away into...

38

When I know better than the pope

During the papacy of Saint Paul VI, both traditionalists and progressives made the same mistake: they thought they understood things better than the Church. The former said that Pope Paul VI shouldn’t have changed the liturgy because they couldn’t square his teaching with they believed to be true. The latter said that Paul VI should have changed the ban on contraception because they couldn’t square his teaching with they believed to be true. As Catholics,...

26

The Anti-Francis Vortex

Most of us have at least a passing familiarity with the oft-quoted opening stanza of William Butler Yeats’ apocalyptic poem, “The Second Coming“: Turning and turning in the widening gyreThe falcon cannot hear the falconer;Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhereThe ceremony of innocence is drowned;The best lack all conviction, while the worstAre full of passionate intensity. Yeats‘ imagery entered the realm of...

19

What to make of Benedict’s essay on the crisis?

This Thursday, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI published an article in a German newspaper about the sexual abuse crisis. In it, the Pope Emeritus takes some hard stances against the decline in sexual morality that took place following the 1960s in general, and the Second Vatican Council in particular. Francis’ detractors, unsurprisingly, have read it as a vindication of their claims that the root cause of the abuse crisis is the Church’s sexual decay. They see...