Children, it is the last hour! As you have heard that antichrist is coming, so now many antichrists have come. From this we know that it is the last hour. They went out from us, but they did not belong to us; for if they had belonged to us, they would have remained with us. But by going out they made it plain that none of them belongs to us. But you have been anointed by the Holy One, and all of you have knowledge. I write to you, not because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and you know that no lie comes from the truth. (1 John 2:18-21, NRSV)

All heretics, all schismatics went out from us, that is, they go out from the Church; but they would not go out, if they were of us. Therefore, before they went out they were not of us. If before they went out they were not of us, many are within, are not gone out, but yet are antichrists. We dare to say this: and why, but that each one while he is within may not be an antichrist? For he is about to describe and mark the antichrists, and we shall see them now. And each person ought to question his own conscience, whether he be an antichrist. (Augustine, Homily 3 on the First Epistle of John)

Recent weeks have shown us just how far some people are willing to go to create a controversy. Despite various reports indicating that indigenous statues represent Our Lady of the Amazon, the motherly love of the Lord, the Amazonian lands and peoples, and our sister Mother Earth, a mangled cadaver of far-right Catholics have done everything in their power to confuse the Faithful and malign our Amazonian brethren. Many seem surprised to see the white supremacist talking points erupting across Catholic Twitter, speaking of the inherent superiority of a specifically European Christianity. The rot pours forth from its source and the source was never Christ. It is and always was a root born of egoism.

Some of my own friends (and former friends) have been caught up in these sins. People who I spent many nights over many years counseling, praying for and with, exploring problems and solutions, attempting to help. People that I brought into the Church, as a convert myself. People whose faith I tried to strengthen. And people who strengthened my faith, too. 

It has certainly been difficult to watch Catholics whom I helped join and grow in the Church, or those who helped me, espouse this absurd ethnocentric fantasy. Perhaps— please God— they do it without realizing it, but they remain totally invincible to any counterargument. Even my former pastor and parish have taken to blindly maligning the Pope, misrepresenting the Faith, and molding the Gospel to their own sensibilities. One friend told me that it was quite a time to be alive, but I find myself more and more bored with these tired old heresies that never seem to be as interesting as when they were first revealed.

Watching my treasured circle of friends, pastors, and confidants throughout the Midwest abandon the Faith— here quickly and loudly, there slowly and subtly— I don’t think I have ever felt pain like it. I wrestle with Jesus about it every day. I don’t believe there is a moment this loss doesn’t weigh on me, whatever else I try to occupy myself with. They may have been my friends, and I will always be grateful for them, but regardless they have certainly been deceived. The result has been that I have questioned myself more than ever before. There are days when I feel like throwing the whole spiritual life aside and giving in to the temptations of the present. Oh, well. There is an insight into my own faults for you.

When I go into my soul to pray, so to speak, I recognize myself. I don’t recognize my old friends, obsessed with race and conspiracy and being right in the face of all contrary facts. I certainly don’t recognize the priests who once showed such tact and patience but have traded it in for triumphalism. I don’t recognize my old friends, yet I don’t feel different. But my former colleagues, partners, pew-sitters, brothers and sisters— people I built up parishes with, evangelized with, prayed with, held onto through difficult life events— I look in their eyes and listen to their words, and realize I don’t know them from Adam anymore. They truly have tossed aside the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It has made me a weeping mess in my reading chair in my quiet garage, before my little icons and crucifix, more often than is perhaps good for me.

Most of these fools speak as if Christ was a red-cheeked Norwegian or a tea-sipping Englishman. It really is a comical affair, insisting that Christianity is inherently European. Christianity, it turns out, is inherently Indigenous. It is inherently foreign to almost everyone, in the strict, ethnic sense. Our Lord is— not was— an indigenous Jewish man from Palestine. He maintains that immutable identity for all of time and eternity. Jesus is a poor indigenous laborer whom the Father has exalted to heavenly glory. The Son of God may be the infinite ground of all existence, but He chose to become one of the feeblest and most helpless of men. Who is less powerful than someone trapped under the thumb of an imperial power? But the Lord turns that dynamic on its head.

According to our Faith, two poor, indigenous Jews are the King and Queen of Creation. Their humble, native culture, through the power of God, is precisely what transformed the cultures so many white Catholics take for granted. As Pius XI once said, “Spiritually, we are all Semites.” If I may update that phrase for my own purposes: spiritually, we are all natives, not of Europe or the United States, but of a kingdom not of this world. That kingdom can take the whole world up into it. It is a kingdom that can redeem anything if human beings will just let it.

We know— well, we all knew, last I checked— that there is no white or black or brown in Christ. There is no man or woman. There is no superiority or inferiority. There is no “inherently” Christian national culture; every seed the Lord sows must be tended to grow and thrive. There is no inherently superior race in the eyes of God, and there is no inherently superior culture to offer him. So long as a group of persons is open to Christ and obedient to His Church— re-read that, if you’re one of my old friends, because you forget it— their culture grows and evolves into something honoring the Lord. Do European Christians look down on their Indigenous brethren for their Christianity’s youth? Paul reminded Timothy to defy people like that. 

No, Indigenous cultures, handed over to Christ, are just as much capable of worship and humility and art and insight as our own. Their spirituality is as open and honest, and as capable of refinement and improvement, as any other Catholic’s. Their thoughts, words, deeds, emotions (even if we disagree with them), are worthy of respect and patience. Do you think some Catholics are worshiping the wrong way? Perhaps the prudent option is to calmly talk to them about it, just to be sure. Then, perhaps someone could offer some of that filial correction we hear so much about from traditionalists— rather than throwing someone’s religious or cultural possessions into a river and proclaiming your “white” Christianity is superior to their “native” Christianity. 

I intentionally selected 1 John 2 and St. Augustine’s commentary to open this essay. I believe that every traditionalist— including those who once saw me as a brother to pray with rather than an enemy to be defeated— knows exactly my meaning by citing these texts for them. Meanwhile, those of us who choose to remain in the bosom of the Church, who choose to strive despite our daily failures for faith, hope, and charity, press on. The work of the kingdom doesn’t stop because of a small cadre of rabble-rousers and their parodic apostles.

It truly doesn’t make sense, however despairing I may feel on this 30th Sunday in Ordinary Time, to give up because a small band of sad, bitter racists wishes it could hijack the Church. It makes no sense at all to surrender Beauty, Goodness, and Truth because a group of fundamentalists insists on making physical threats of violence and committing hate crimes out of their bigoted ignorance. The opus Dei continues. We must press on, faithful to God, obedience to His Church, receptive to the Successor of St. Peter.

Well, back to work, everyone. The Lord will take care of His people, and He will deal with those who pervert the Gospel for their own sinful ends. We have souls to save, penances to perform, and good news to proclaim. Let not your hearts be troubled. Keep your eyes on Christ and His Mother, the poor Lady of the Amazon. God love you.

Whoever are not antichrists, it cannot be that they should continue without. But of his own will is each either an antichrist or in Christ. Either we are among the members, or among the bad humors. He that changes himself for the better, is in the body, a member: but he that continues in his badness, is a bad humor; and when he is gone out, then they who were oppressed will be relieved. (Augustine, ibid.)

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78 Responses

  1. Avatar Chris says:

    Excellent Joe.

  2. Avatar Lazarus says:

    When Trump ran for president people I trusted became white supremacists. Now I don’t listen to what fellow Catholics without a degree of skepticism. I don’t know if they really thought about the words they speak or if they are just forwarding the opinions that their clique has and believe it simply because it is trending or popular.

    • Avatar Anne Lastman says:

      Lazarus they forward the opinions of their coterie and add just more mud until the narrative takes on a life of its own.

  3. Avatar chris dorf says:

    St Justin Martyr first apology

    Christians charged with atheism

    Why, then, should this be? In our case, who pledge ourselves to do no wickedness, nor to hold these atheistic opinions, you do not examine the charges made against us; but, yielding to unreasoning passion, and to the instigation of evil demons, you punish us without consideration or judgment. For the truth shall be spoken; since of old these evil demons, effecting apparitions of themselves, both defiled women and corrupted boys, and showed such fearful sights to men, that those who did not use their reason in judging of the actions that were done, were struck with terror; and being carried away by fear, and not knowing that these were demons, they called them gods, and gave to each the name which each of the demons chose for himself. And when Socrates endeavoured, by true reason and examination, to bring these things to light, and deliver men from the demons, then the demons themselves, by means of men who rejoiced in iniquity, compassed his death, as an atheist and a profane person, on the charge that “he was introducing new divinities;” and in our case they display a similar activity. For not only among the Greeks did reason (Logos) prevail to condemn these things through Socrates, but also among the Barbarians were they condemned by Reason (or the Word, the Logos) Himself, who took shape, and became man, and was called Jesus Christ; and in obedience to Him, we not only deny that they who did such things as these are gods, but assert that they are wicked and impious demons, whose actions will not bear comparison with those even of men desirous of virtue.

    http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/0126.htm

  4. Avatar Anastasia says:

    Moving piece, which captures many of my own feelings of loss WRT friendships within Catholic community damaged by disagreements over the Holy Father. What is especially mind boggling is that most of these former friends work, in some professional capacity, close to the Church. They are professors at CUA or journalists at EWTN or “conservative” Catholic bloggers. All scowling at Francis. Ora pro nobis…

    • Avatar Peter says:

      They are also American!
      I was told once never to rustle the feathers of American Catholics, Now I know why!
      Thank goodness for Pope Francis from the South!
      Cheers, Peter

    • Avatar Christopher Lake says:

      Anastasia,

      It deeply saddens me that so many Catholics who are in positions to teach (and misinform!) relatively young minds about the Church and the faith are now openly resistant to Pope Francis. It has been obvious, for some time, that Raymond Arroyo and his “Papal posse” are in this ironically anti-Papal camp. This is very lamentable.

      However, it’s actually *frightening* to me that anti-Papal “resistance” would now even include some professors at the Catholic University of America. To be clear, for all reading here, I *also* seriously object to Catholic professors who teach against, for example, the Church’s historic position on abortion and/or artificial contraception. University professors have a *very serious responsibility* for the careful teaching and guiding of young minds, and I utterly abhor the thought that some CUA professors could actually be teaching their students to “resist” the current Vicar of Christ and his Magisterial teachings.

      When I was a young English major, many years ago, I took certain classes from professors who seemed to believe that literary texts have no objective meaning (which is, itself, ironically, a statement of objective truth!). These professors taught their classes from the perspective that literary texts are largely valuable for how we can, supposedly, challenge and dismantle societal injustices and oppressions through the practices of “critical reading, deconstruction, post-structuralism,” etc.

      At the time that I took these classes, I was a newly converted Christian, and a fairly recent ex-atheist, who had long struggled with questions of meaning, philosophically and otherwise, in my life. I knew, intuitively, that something was seriously wrong with the extremely reductive, and sometimes nihilistic, ways that (some of) my English professors were teaching me to read (insert author here). However, due to the fact that I was still quite young and not yet well-formed in my new Christian faith, the radical literary theories that were being foisted upon me and the other students had a greater influence on me than I even realized at the time. Eventually, though I tried to resist them, the impact of these radical theories on my young mind, heart, and soul played a serious role in taking me to some very, very dark places, emotionally, psychologically, and, ultimately, spiritually. Suffice it to say that in time, I quite literally almost died from hopelessness and despair… but God rescued me in a miraculous way. I will always be beyond grateful to Him for that rescue.

      When I read your comment that some CUA professors, whom you know, are “scowling at Francis,” I remembered my terrible experience with those English professors– whom, I now firmly believe, seriously abused the hearts, minds, and souls of the students whom they taught, including me. I can only hope and pray that the anti-Francis CUA professors are not similarly hurting their students with a sick, twisted, anti-Papal agenda. Ora pro nobis, indeed…!

  5. Avatar Marie says:

    Beautifully said Joe. A testament to the pain of lost and weakened friendships and family unions by those who simply follow Christ’s promise.

  6. Avatar Peter says:

    I am totally with you, Joe.

    You are so right about the efforts of “a small band of sad, bitter racists wish(ing) it could hijack the Church”. They are hard to ignore. They are so loud. But, they are so wrong, which is the “sad” bit. If we feel this so much, imagine how the Holy Father must feel? That is why I keep Pope Francis, and like-minded people, like you, Joe, in my daily prayers and thoughts.
    The truth is, of course, that the vast majority of Catholics (and non-Catholics) support the Pope and the reforms he is making. I live in Sydney (Australia) and I attend Mass in various parishes and I am reassured by the strong support that Pope Francis receives from everyday Catholics. Comments like, “We keep praying for Pope Francis that he will maintain the strength to continue reforming the Church”, are commonplace. I hear strong support for the direction of the recent Synod regarding the needs of the Amazon, with comments like, “It’s about time”!

    It is good to listen to the voices of everyday Catholics and turn off the loud noise of the militant minority who do not understand the universality of the Church but worship their own man-made brazon idols!

    • Avatar Mary Angelica says:

      I don’t like the rise of racism making its way in some traditionalist circles, but I also don’t think they are at the root of disdain for the Pope and the synod. In the US, opposition in some instances began with his critique of the American idol of capitalism, in other instances, it involved some caricature-like critiques of traditionalists themselves ( he doesn’t mince words with them). And in other cases, it involved the Pope’s initially poor response to the sex abuse crisis. Whatever the combinations of reasons, though, it makes people more at edge with respect to him, even where he does well. Worse yet, whatever these reasons, people are now also more vulnerable to the tickling of the ear by these racist ideologues.

      Impressions of the Pope’s popularity honestly depend on who you are with and where you live. In the case of those close to me, he was highly accepted, but no longer is, for reasons unrelated to American ideology. His response to the crisis of my family’s home country Venezuela was awfully tepid (here he minced his words -a lot-), and the people there felt nothing less than betrayed. I personally think he realized it as well, and has declined to comment on it after a certain point because it would only make it worse. But the damage was done. My immediate family and I recognize that none of this is doctrinal, and he might have his political reasons not calling out the injustice in plain terms, but those of a weaker faith were literally scandalized by this away from the faith. Weirdly enough, the synod doesn’t seem to be in anyone’s radar that I know of, even though a major part of Venezuela is Amazon rainforest.

  7. Avatar Manuel Dauvin says:

    To my traditionalist brothers and sisters who read this important post. Please don’t feel judged. Have the humility to back down slightly from the rhetoric against the holy father. Extract yourselves from the echo chambers of conspiracy and distance yourselves not from beauty, tradition, piety and obedience but from the gossip, the drama, the fatalism, the judgement, the clickbait headlines etc.
    If you have the humility to start anew in reading the words of Christ and see the root of Francis’ thought in them you will quickly realize that the faith we love, the church that has endured through the centuries is not threatened by our pope.. It is the very foundation that you think is in jeopardy that provides our pope with the strength to reach out to the spiritual margins.
    If I and WPI ARE right would it not make perfect sense that the evil one is enticing our most faithful soldiers with thoughts of mutiny?

    Thanks Joe. Im with you in a reduced circle of friends… missing the good old days when we didn’t weigh magisterial documents on a jeweler’s scale. We just knew the Church could weather anything.

  8. Avatar Leila Miller says:

    I and my husband are semites (he a Jew, I an Arab). We are also both faithful Catholics. We decry the idols in the Vatican. Sorry, you can cry “racist” and “bigot” and “white supremecist” all day long, but in the end, it’s just name-calling. You misunderstand your old friends. They are against idolatry, not against diverse cultures and peoples. Try again. Your calumny and accusations just don’t fit.

    • Avatar Peter says:

      My goodness, Leila. What are these “idols in the Vatican”?

      Why are people so divided? Have people forgotten the Holy Spirit’s guidance of the Church through the successor of Peter? I don’t understand how people can call themselves “faithful Catholics” while rejecting the Holy Father.

      In one sense, it is really not worth the effort in continually trying to accommodate those who oppose the Holy Father. This only gives credence to their naivety. Pray for them and move on. That might sound harsh but, from my experience, people who choose not to believe do not change. The Protestant Reformation is a prime example of that, as is that of Old Catholics and, more recently, Lefebvrists! The history of the Church is littered with such ‘movements’. By being faithful to the Holy Father and the Magisterium of the Church, one can be certain of what it is to be Catholic.

      • Avatar Leila Miller says:

        There’s a bit of gaslighting going on when the elites insist on telling the peasants (regular Catholics) that all of what we see with our own “lying eyes” never really happened. I had an exchange with Fr. Spadaro (linked below). You can see that many Catholics still see mandala circles, sage offered by females (shamans?), bowing in a prostration that is only reserved for the Host in a monstrance, processing Pachamama (or “Mother Earth” representation?!) in Mass, placing the (still unidentified) statue before the altars in Rome, etc., as idolatry. If all of that is not idolatry, then what would idolatry look like? Serious question.

        These issues will not go away. We do not reject the Holy Father. We pray for him, daily. However, the faithful laity are not going to simply accept what happened at the synod as we have accepted all of the rest of the decades of corruption to date. Things are bubbling to the surface on many fronts: The scandals of widespread sexual depravity, of gross financial malfeasance (and theft), and of syncretism and a loss of supernatural faith among too many of the hierarchy. We must fear offending God before we fear offending man, and unfortunately, too many prelates have that exactly backwards at the moment.

        https://twitter.com/antoniospadaro/status/1190738729083781120

      • Avatar Marie says:

        Leila- I’m sorry to say, but it is you, and your followers who are members of the elite, so certain you are the beholders of truth, that you are willing to reject Christ’s Vicar to remain there. What else explains the constant claim to be faithful, ad nausiem, despite rejecting Catholic teaching concerning papal authority and the role of the Magisterium? You have placed yourself above both. How is that possible and still claim faithfulness? How can you claim peasantry? Please!

        Our frustration comes from our loss of family and friends, who choose to follow you, and others on their journey further and further away from the authentic Church, despite Christ’s gift of protection by simply staying with his Vicar. Why is that so hard to do, other than having such faith in oneself and one’s ability to recognize truth without any assistance? Was Christ’s gift meant only for the simple folk who wouldn’t able able to see? But you, and others can? You will guide those who can’t?

        The pachamama is a perfect example of this attitude. You choose to ignore primary, first hand sources and go with your own ‘eyes’, because of course you know better. The pope’s words, the woman who gifted the statue to him mean nothing. It saddens me greatly that those who converted, or came back to Catholicism for the Church’s steadfast teachings on life and sexuality have somehow determined they are now the official spokesmen for the faith. They have replaced the very teachings that ensure faith and morals are protected, with their own ability to interpret, all while laying claim to faithfulness. How ironic is that?

    • Avatar L Daily says:

      I noticed below you repeat the ‘peasants’ meme popular with alt right Catholics. How did this meme become a talking point of online church? ‘Regular’ Catholics are loyal to the Pope, docile to the guidance of the Holy Spirit through legitimate church authority, and rarely monetize their conversion stories as Catholic bloggers.

      • Avatar Leila Miller says:

        What an odd accusation, as I’ve never monetized my blogs in the ten years I’ve had them. And I give my book (Primal Loss, endorsed by Cardinal Sarah) away for free in PDF form to anyone who asks. Such a money-grubber I am! Lol. As for the “peasants” meme… sorry, I’m 52, and I’ve been using that term for many years. Long before memes were a thing. There was life before memes, believe it or not, and the idea of “peasants” vs. the elites has been around longer than you’ve been alive. 🙂

  9. Avatar Ralph says:

    Thank you for this moving piece. I think your story is a good example of what Pope Francis means when he says that reality is more important than ideology. I see some Catholics putting ideology above fidelity to Pope Francis and their relationships with other people. As others have mentioned, most Catholics are not ideologues and support Pope Francis, it is just that ideology tends to dominate Catholic media outlets, especially online. Stay strong and God bless.

  10. Avatar Carl BIVONA says:

    My 3 year old granddaughter drew a picture of Jesus.. to my eye it looked more like a happy face on a stick. After a bit deeper thought, I googled a picture of a monstance and asked her” what is this?” She smiled a big beaming smile and said, “that’s Jesus. ” Amen

  11. Avatar Alred says:

    Wow that’s shocking. It seems pretty widespread. Do you think perhaps the Pope could do something to help all these people who are going off the rails or should he just keep confusing them?

  12. Avatar Cian O'Brien says:

    Joe,

    With all due respect I find your article incredibly disingenuous.

    The “RadTrads” do not have to make up anything to confuse the faithful and those people of good will. The Holy Father and is Episcopate do a very good job of that all by themselves. Your article references another on this site, that further references the Pope’s apology to for the removal of the Pachamama,

    https://www.vaticannews.va/en/pope/news/2019-10/pope-francis-comments-on-statues-stolen-from-church.html

    in the apology he states plainly that they represent the Pachamama. First the Vatican press states they were not the Pachamama, then the Pope states they are the Pachamama, now they are not again because when he said this it was in “italics”, I do not know how one speaks in italics, the man cannot seem to talk straight if he meant otherwise, it is just ridiculous. Further to say it had “no idolatrous intent” is nice to know but pointless as to the fact that a pagan goddess representing the creation – not the creator – was venerated in a church and the Vatican gardens. One can be the cause of a car accident without having the intention to damage the car or its occupants, but the fact is despite the lack of ill intent the damage is done. The lengths you seem to go to to excuse this is beyond reason.

    Further he makes it clear that he is apologizing in his function as the Bishop of Rome as the head of his diocese. Next he apologies to the indigenous peoples who may be offended and not to his flock which were likely more offended these idols were ever given a place of veneration in their diocese. He invited non-catholic idols and worshipers into his diocese and he is responsible for the fallout. A true apology would have gone both ways, and been more understanding of the anger and confusion this synod has caused those under his pastoral care.

    It seems an irony to me that the current Pontificate is accepting and forgiving to all the peoples of the world and their religious traditions that are sacred to them… all that is with the apparent exception to traditional Catholics. As a matter of fact he seems quite hostile towards them. One should give pause as to why that is so.

    In Christ,
    Cian

  13. Avatar L Daily says:

    You’re experiencing the grief many Catholics have felt over the past several decades as converts hijaked the American church and declared ordinary Catholics worshippers ‘banal’. Every parish has had to deal with at least one of these tiresome newcomers who claimed the authority of God as soon as the communion wafer touched his tongue. The rejection of the legitimate Church authority and infidelity to the Vicar of Christ indicates that they never understood or embraced Catholicism, but were attracted to and now defend an imaginery church of aimed at preserving Western European Christendom and medieval accoutrements. This imaginery faith was never about love of God and neighbor, and certainly not a missionary discipleship. The Amazon Synod exposed the hearts and kind of many.

    Be of good cheer, the Holy Spirit through the leadership of Pope Francis is righting the barque of Peter. The misguided are free to stay on board or jump ship, but not to navigate.

    • Avatar Leila Miller says:

      You might want to ponder this, from the Catechism. Those whom you perceive as “misguided” may be the ones closer to the truth:

      The Church’s ultimate trial

      675 Before Christ’s second coming the Church must pass through a final trial that will shake the faith of many believers. The persecution that accompanies her pilgrimage on earth will unveil the “mystery of iniquity” in the form of a religious deception offering men an apparent solution to their problems at the price of apostasy from the truth. The supreme religious deception is that of the Antichrist, a pseudo-messianism by which man glorifies himself in place of God and of his Messiah come in the flesh.

      676 The Antichrist’s deception already begins to take shape in the world every time the claim is made to realize within history that messianic hope which can only be realized beyond history through the eschatological judgment. The Church has rejected even modified forms of this falsification of the kingdom to come under the name of millenarianism, especially the “intrinsically perverse” political form of a secular messianism.

      677 The Church will enter the glory of the kingdom only through this final Passover, when she will follow her Lord in his death and Resurrection. The kingdom will be fulfilled, then, not by a historic triumph of the Church through a progressive ascendancy, but only by God’s victory over the final unleashing of evil, which will cause his Bride to come down from heaven. God’s triumph over the revolt of evil will take the form of the Last Judgment after the final cosmic upheaval of this passing world.

      • Avatar Mike Lewis says:

        Are you suggesting that the Holy Father might be the Antichrist?

      • Avatar L Daily says:

        It might be time for another “reversion”, I think you missed a few key points the last time around.

      • Avatar Leila Miller says:

        Not sure why I can’t reply directly to Mike Lewis, but he asks: “Are you suggesting that the Holy Father might be the Antichrist?” I have suggested nothing. I posted three paragraphs from the Catechism of the Catholic Church, about the Church’s ultimate trial, which will be very painful, with much deception and apostasy— and which many people see as imminent. These aren’t my words, this is our Faith. If you don’t like what you read, take it up with the Church. Every line is rich with meaning, all of it worth meditating on. And if you read with care (which you really should), you will see that Antichrist here is described is a movement or ideology, and is not as an actual person.

      • Avatar Mike Lewis says:

        Except that I don’t interpret anything that Francis is doing with the Great Apostasy or the Antichrist.

        I don’t reject the Church teachings on this, my concern is with how you appear to be applying them.

      • Avatar Mike Lewis says:

        In fact, if the Antichrist ideology is a parallel, counterfeit Church that resembles the real one, it seems like a movement that claims to be “authentic” Catholicism but acts in defiance of the Vicar of Christ, the visible source of unity in the Church, it would seem that the “resistance” to Pope Francis is much more problematic.

      • Avatar Lol Daily says:

        “These aren’t my words, this is our Faith.” No, you’ve co-opted a few paragraphs from the CCC, twisted and misrepresented them to fit your false narrative, as is typical of alt right Catholic ideologues. Again, ‘regular’ Catholics are loyal to the Pope.

      • Avatar Pete Vickery says:

        Leila, you’re engaging in sola Traditio. Protestants (via sola Scriptura) make themselves the final authority when they claim the pope or the Church contradict Scripture. You make yourself the final authority when you assert the pope contradicts Tradition. You do not possess the keys nor do you have Christ’s promise backing you. Pope Francis does. Admit it and quit it. If you disagree, please explain Lumen Gentium 25 to all of us.

    • Avatar Mary Angelica says:

      “You’re experiencing the grief many Catholics have felt over the past several decades as converts hijaked the American church and declared ordinary Catholics worshippers ‘banal’. Every parish has had to deal with at least one of these tiresome newcomers who claimed the authority of God as soon as the communion wafer touched his tongue”

      Wait, why do you think this is about converts? That seems like a weird argument… Yet, it’s not the first time I’ve heard it.

      I also find it interesting that so many seem to think the outrage is an American phenomenon. I’ve read through the comments of Spanish articles on the synod, and you have a lot of the same fights there too.

    • Avatar Cian O'Brien says:

      L Daly,

      I am of great cheer thank you. Unfortunately, though it appears more and more to me that the misguided are currently the ones navigating, they are “allowed to” as I have no evidence that the last conclave was invalid. I typically do not give myself the authority to say who is allowed to do this or that, it appears you make claim to such authority. I can merely convey my experiences, learning, and point out what others do or say. I can also hold them to account if they are inconsistent, by any meaning of the term. That is far different than saying what they can or cannot do.

      I am not sure if you were accusing me of not understanding or fully embracing Catholicism. That is questioning the Pope would place one outside of being Catholic. Well the Eastern Orthodox Church believes itself to be fully Catholic. It claims proper apostolic succession and practices the same seven sacraments as the Roman Catholic Church. It claims the same creed sans the filioque clause. They also have retained their “medieval accouterments”, and they seem very real, not imaginary as I can go right down the street to an Eastern Rite mass and it is the same as it was long ago. Also they do not claim the blind obedience to the Roman Pontiff that you do. Are you claiming that they are not Catholic? Would you charge the Eastern and Greek Rites as you have the Latin, and accuse them of being an “imaginery faith (that) was never about love of God and neighbor, and certainly not a missionary discipleship.”? Would you?

      In Christ,
      Cian

      • Avatar L Daily says:

        “I typically do not give myself the authority to say who is allowed to do this or that, it appears you make claim to such authority.”

        Cian,

        Catholics understand that the Pope has the authority. Personal confusion does not change that fact. Religious obedience or submission implies a docility of spirit that receives the working of the Holy Spirit through the actions of one’s legitimate superior with in the hierarchical structure of the Church.
        To believe otherwise, if you are Catholic, is dissent.

        Most adult believers experience internal dissent at some point in life and understand its challenges and opportunities. Self proclaimed ‘reverts’ are simply Catholics who have experienced internal dissent and come out the other end. Newcomers, perhaps, don’t understand the nature of dissent and believe they must always feel comfortable or in agreement with every movement of the Holy Spirit working through legitimate authority. The appropriate response to internal dissent is prayer and consultation with a spiritual director.

        Public dissent, if charitable and humble, may have a place if it remains in honest dialogue with legimate authority. Only the most haughty public dissenters would announce boldly authority over their religious superiors. It is a literal break with the Body of Christ.

        So yes, the Pope has the authority – you or I do not.

  14. Avatar Leila Miller says:

    Well, this piece is entitled “Children, it is the Last Hour” and the first two quotes provided reference antichrist. So, I guess I’m not so out of line to let the Catechism speak on that? You can be concerned about my application and how I read the “sign of the times,” but you are free to interpret the passages for yourself—like I said, lots to ponder and meditate on. I guess we will all know, someday, what it all meant! No one is stopping you from giving your own interpretation here, by the way. I’m just saying, some people may interpret it differently from what the authors of this blog believe it to mean.

    • Avatar Mike Lewis says:

      Such would not be the Catholic way. We have been promised the leadership of the Successor of Peter in perpetuity.

      • Avatar Leila Miller says:

        We have never, ever been promised that Peter’s successor would lead well, and you know this.

        (Also, is there a reason why my other comment, in response to someone claiming I stole the peasant meme and that I monetize my blog—both untrue—is not approved and has disappeared? Maybe there is a glitch again, which I understand can happen.)

  15. Avatar Leila Miller says:

    I see you did put forth your interpretation, before my comment was approved. So, yes, that is one way to interpret it! I happen to interpret it quite differently, as do others. As I said, one day we shall know, and until then, let us all continue to fast and pray. Let us hope and pray for Jesus to come quickly! Because the darkness and deception have only just begun, I’m afraid.

    • Avatar Mike Lewis says:

      Sorry, our comment approval system is weird. I didn’t see the previous one

    • Avatar Faith says:

      I agree that the darkness and deception are already occurring. It is unbelievable that so many Catholics with a public forum are not defending the Holy Father. In fact, they seem to spend all their time questioning his every move. Leila Miller, I challenge you to write a blog post outlining the many positive traits of and writings of the Holy Father. (There are inded many… and I am a faithful Catholic) See how many of your followers turn on you.

      • Avatar Leila Miller says:

        Faith, I did write in defense of the Holy Father for at least the first two years. It’s all there on my first (LCB) blog, and you can go look. I stopped doing that long ago, when I just could not defend him anymore. There was no way to do it. I now simply pray for him. I couldn’t care less if followers turn on me or if they stay. I have always said what I think, and I don’t try to manipulate people to “follow” or “like” me. What you see is what you get, no pretense. If all the folks leave, so be it. But I appreciate that your comment is respectful and that you did not call me a racist. 😉

    • Avatar Lazarus says:

      How do you reconcile your opinions with this?

      http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/03744a.htm

      ‘Among the prerogatives conferred on His Church by Christ is the gift of indefectibility. By this term is signified, not merely that the Church will persist to the end of time, but further, that it will preserve unimpaired its essential characteristics. The Church can never undergo any constitutional change which will make it, as a social organism, something different from what it was originally. It can never become corrupt in faith or in morals; nor can it ever lose the Apostolic hierarchy, or the sacraments through which Christ communicates grace to men. The gift of indefectibility is expressly promised to the Church by Christ, in the words in which He declares that the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. It is manifest that, could the storms which the Church encounters so shake it as to alter its essential characteristics and make it other than Christ intended it to be, the gates of hell, i.e. the powers of evil, would have prevailed. It is clear, too, that could the Church suffer substantial change, it would no longer be an instrument capable of accomplishing the work for which God called it in to being. He established it that it might be to all men the school of holiness. This it would cease to be if ever it could set up a false and corrupt moral standard. He established it to proclaim His revelation to the world, and charged it to warn all men that unless they accepted that message they must perish everlastingly. Could the Church, in defining the truths of revelation err in the smallest point, such a charge would be impossible. No body could enforce under such a penalty the acceptance of what might be erroneous. By the hierarchy and the sacraments, Christ, further, made the Church the depositary of the graces of the Passion. Were it to lose either of these, it could no longer dispense to men the treasures of grace.

      The gift of indefectibility plainly does not guarantee each several part of the Church against heresy or apostasy. The promise is made to the corporate body. Individual Churches may become corrupt in morals, may fall into heresy, may even apostatize. Thus at the time of the Mohammedan conquests, whole populations renounced their faith; and the Church suffered similar losses in the sixteenth century. But the defection of isolated branches does not alter the character of the main stem. The society of Jesus Christ remains endowed with all the prerogatives bestowed on it by its Founder. Only to One particular Church is indefectibility assured, viz. to the See of Rome. To Peter, and in him to all his successors in the chief pastorate, Christ committed the task of confirming his brethren in the Faith (Luke 22:32); and thus, to the Roman Church, as Cyprian says, “faithlessness cannot gain access” (Epistle 54). ‘

  16. Avatar Leila Miller says:

    Are you going to allow ”lol daily” to continue to call names (alt-right) and accuse me of monetizing my story/blogs (lie)? It seems like a lot of insults are allowed on this page, in addition to the original post, which calls names of “racist,” “bigot,” “haters,” “white supremacists”, etc? Mike you seem like a decent guy, but what the heck?

    Dear “lol daily”—if you don’t think “regular Catholics” are upset about idolatry in the Church (or that we are too dumb to recognize it), or that we “regular Catholics” have to love everything the pope does, then you don’t know many “regular Catholics”. I assure you, there are plenty of us, and we haven’t changed our beliefs at all. My beliefs haven’t changed a bit since my reversion 25 years ago. I’m a “regular Catholic,” like it or not, and there are millions like me. We are faithful to the end. I’ll continue to believe the Faith, as it’s always been taught. Truth cannot change. Meanwhile, you can continue to call names and speak untruths about me (whom you do not know)d. Peace.

    • Avatar Faith says:

      Leila Miller, I do know you and have followed your work. I also know that you are a big fan of Taylor Marshall, Michael Voris, 1P5, Lifesite etc. You are doing your reputation and your good work no favours by associating and linking to them. This site is committed to truth in love. If you have chosen to turn a blind eye to the white supremacy which is running rampant among these sites, well, I suppose you give these guys a pass while doubting the faithfulness of the Holy Father. Also, I posted one polite comment each on NCregister, Lifesite, Patrick Coffin, Steve Ray and other’s twitter and got immediately blocked. So… perhaps you think there are millions who stand with you and are willing to entertain the idea of Pope Francis being the anti-Christ. But you and others have indeed created yourself a bit of a bubble.

      • Avatar Leila Miller says:

        Faith, first, I have never called the pope the anti-Christ. That is absurd. Second, yes, I do follow and like Marshall and the rest. I make absolutely no secret of that fact (since I post them often). I am not the only one, by far. Dr. Janet Smith is respectable, no? She posts them as well, and is extremely concerned. Behind the scenes, there are many, many academics who are very concerned. Not just the “regular folk.” And these are good and holy people who have ratcheted up their spiritual lives.

        I have never heard of any of those folks “immediately blocking” a polite comment. What was the comment? That seems strange, to be honest. No one blocks polite comments (aside from Fr. James Martin or Mark Shea…).

    • Avatar L Daily says:

      “Faith, first, I have never called the pope the anti-Christ.” You implied it, several comments above, yesterday. We can read it here. A common tactic of the movement you support, call it alt right or another name, to accuse by implication then deflect.

    • Avatar L Daily says:

      Fidelity to the Vicar of Christ does not mean ‘loving’ everything any Pope says or does. The Pope is not a Facebook friend collecting likes. I’m glad you’ve enjoyed a stable faith life for 25 years. The life of the Church is a bit longer and not bound by your personal experience, however comforting.

      Catholics remain in respectful dialogue with and appropriate obedience to legitimate ecclesial authority, giving their assent through them to the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

      A protestant spirit places personal musings and pet peeves above and speaks out against legitimate authority. In essence negating the very Church they claim to defend. A zealot might feel strongly about this or that, but public dissent displays a lack of trust in and separation from the Roman Catholic Church. So be it, go with God. You have been gifted with the free will to do so.

      • Avatar Leila Miller says:

        Thanks for analyzing me, but I’m not leaving the Church or going anywhere. And I have not rejected Francis as Vicar of Christ on earth. He is the pope, no matter what a poor leader he is (and I will leave it there). He has not changed the deposit of faith, nor could he. He has no such power. So…. keep trying to peg me as whatever it is you want to peg me as. Good luck.

  17. Avatar Leila Miller says:

    Jong, so strange. I am not a “rad trad”. I go to a Novus Ordo mass. I have attending two TLM’s in my entire life, and one was for a wedding. So again, good luck. As for Viganò— not a thing he has said about the scandals has been refuted (no one has even attempted to refute; still waiting on those McCarrick docs as the Vatican promised, hmmm.) But keep trying to get him on personal sins or failings (I have many, do you?) and ignore the facts he raised. God bless!

  18. Avatar Leila Miller says:

    Marie, thanks for admitting that the little statue is, in fact, “pachamama.” That is much appreciated and very honest. Refreshing. Thank you. Now study further who and what “pachamama” is. God bless.

    • Avatar Marie says:

      Leila- Is that the best you can do? For someone so ready to find fault in the Church, her Vicar and others, you are very dismissive of any challenge to your position. A simple claim of faithfulness, and a little jab at superiority does little to advance your cause or allow for dialogue. As a member of the ‘confused and suffering’ group, you seem to have little time to help those you must feel are wrong, and following down the wrong path. After all, there is only one correct road. Several attempts have been made to show you that perhaps you are mistaken, and in return all you can do is this?

      Why don’t you address the issue of papal authority and the role of the Magisterium? Why do you and others continue to ignore it when asked? If you are so certain you are right, surely you have some good teachings to back your position? I look forward to your response, as I can’t wait to send it to my ‘faithful’ family members who follow you instead of our Vicar.

    • Avatar M. says:

      Leila,

      Thank you for admitting the little statue is not an idol by putting “pachamama” in scare quotes. That is much appreciated and very honest. Refreshing. Thank you. Now study further who and what Oliveiro and his Mama are.

      • Avatar Leila Miller says:

        M, my mistake! I will take it out of scare quotes. She is Pachamama. An idol. Hope that clears it up!

      • Pedro Gabriel Pedro Gabriel says:

        She is not the Pachamama. It is not an idol. Hope this clears it up and that in the future you will cease to play these kinds of word games that are not a part of a mature discussion

  19. Avatar Faith says:

    Isn’t it curious, then, how nearly 100% of the commenters on these sites are on board the Pope bashing train. Some of the comments are absolutely vile, and many from sedevadantists, yet they block me, a faithful Catholic expressing loyalty to the Pope. Leila Miller, how do you feel being a part of this mechanism that is tearing apart our Church? Janet Smith, too, and all these “intellectuals” who have replaced the truly great Catholic minds with the likes of John Henry Westen and Michael Voris.

    • Avatar M. says:

      John Henry Westen and Michael Voris are their true magisterium, many of these folks obey are docile to every word they utter. Sure, they’ll put a qualifier here or there, always followed by “but at least they are telling it like it is!” They give religious assent of spirit to every article and every youtube video. Because in their minds, the church can’t be against racism since being against racism is a “liberal talking point.” This doesn’t make them racists, though. It just makes them unconcerned with racism, they don’t think it’s an important enough evil to fight. Same with the environment. It’s not in their minds, important enough, the pope should be concerned with politically conservative talking points, not politically liberal talking points! Bad pope! Many of these followers of the Imagisterium truly are not racists, but will fight the *fighting of racism,* since in their minds it is “liberal” to hate racism or protect the environment, and anyone who wants to do so actually hates the babies and isn’t that pro-life. There’s some good old-fashioned mind reading for you. But I think we all know it’s true

      • Avatar Christopher Lake says:

        M.,

        Your comment makes seriously good points, thoughtful and penetrating points. There was a time, not too long ago, when I was actually much closer to the mindset that you describe. above, than I care to admit.

        To be clear, I never denied that racism exists, and that it is a problem. I also never denied that Christians should care for the environment. I just didn’t think that the people whom I categorized, in my mind, as “the liberals,” had much of anything to say on these subjects that could have any validity. This echo-chamber mentality was greatly influenced, *and* reinforced, by my daily intake of American politically conservative media.

        During much of this time, I was a Protestant evangelical who had left the Catholic Church. In truth though, sad to say, even after I returned to the Church, it took *years* before I realized just how much I was taking my cues, in terms of certain major issues, from American politically conservative commentators, rather than from *the Popes, themselves, and the Bishops teaching in communion with them*.

        I’ve changed, quite a bit, from the kind of Catholic that I was during those years. Don’t get me wrong– I haven’t become some radical political leftist, or even, really, a leftist at all. (I actually *was* a radical far-leftist, during my “teenage atheist” tears, but that was a *very* long time ago– a lifetime ago, it seems.) I have allowed my political conservatism to be seriously challenged, and informed, by Papal documents such as Benedict XVI’s “Caritas in Veritate” (an Encyclical which could, and rightly should, make many faces turn red in anger over at Fox News!) and Pope Francis’s “Laudato Si.”

        I wish that so many American Catholics who consider themselves to be faithful and who are “resisting” Pope Francis– Catholics whose daily media diet seems to consist of Fox News, Taylor Marshall, Michael Voris, and 1 Peter 5– would take the time to read and seriously contemplate your above comment and the strong points that it makes. Perhaps a few will. After all, If God can change me from a committed, convinced,”Fox News narrative” Catholic into a Pope-and-Magisterium-listening -and-obeying (very imperfectly but trying!) Catholic, then he can change anyone! 🙂

      • Avatar Jessica says:

        @Christopher Lake: I was the same, except on the liberal side.

        As it turns out, I only disagreed with the Church when I used my own vague definitions for words like secularism and modernism instead of searching out the definition used by the Church. I didn’t expect to see narrow definitions outside of universities and research centers, I guess.

    • Avatar M. says:

      @Christopher Lake, I also distinctly remember being of exactly the mindset I described. I even remember being freaked out about Pope Benedict’s writings, in seriousness, I remember thinking, “Holy cow, I think Pope Benedict is actually secretly a liberal!” It’s very freeing when I finally came to the realization that the church is a spiritual organization with spiritual, not political interests. Three scriptures come to mind while reading Joe Daytona’s article: “My kingdom is not of this world.” “Render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s and unto God what is God’s.” “If ye were of the world, the world would love it’s own. But because you are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.” It is strange to feel hated by fellow Catholics. What is the world, but desire for earthly power. The flesh, but despair.

  20. Avatar Manuel Dauvin says:

    Leila miller

    The portion of the catechism you quoted is among the most profound for me in the whole catechism. I support Pope Francis in His ministry because if Christ will lead the Church into this battle it will be through the channels he has established. ..this is a no Brainer for me as I heard st. jp2 in Denver as a young man ask me to go and preach the gospel. He said the church needed me. Not to tell her where she needs to go and what she needs to do . ..but to share with others the freedom I have found in Christ.

    Leila I ask you to read those lines you quoted from the catechism again. Especially…
    “677 The Church will enter the glory of the kingdom only through this final Passover, when she will follow her Lord in his death and Resurrection.”

    Follow our Lord in his death. ..what does that mean? And how does this jive with “the gates of hell shall not. ..”? I know Taylor Marshall might think it means that the pope is going to betray Christ…but that’s not the church “following”! That’s decapitation. ..a headless church following her Lord to her death…and Resurrection. Headless? I can’t assume there will be another pope after francis. He’s the earthly head that will help the body follow her Lord. We are not the mystical body of ichabod crane.

    Christ was abandoned by his disciples.
    What do I see in the traditionalists camps…perhaps where you find yourself? They have more than simply abandoned pope Francis. They are rallying an internal force to counter his actions which they perceive threaten the future of the church. Leila is that not a fair statement? Do you see many in your circle giving to Francis the kind of support you like to receive? I’m not name calling or gaslighting. You may have given much energy and conversation to decrying the direction you feel this papacy is taking. Is it not because you think that ” If we let him go on like this, everyone will believe in him, and the pagans will come and destroy both our Temple and our nation.”?
    The traditionalist sites spend much time comparing francis to their take on previous pontiffs and documents. ..have they thought to compare him to Christ and the gospel? The narrative you may have gives you a fairly quick answer doesn’t it? “He is not the Christ, he is leading the people astray” or perhaps “he has a demon” “he has gone mad, who can listen to him?”…”we know that God spoke to Moses, as for this man we do not know where he comes from” Pope Francis is not yet accused of being a glutton and a drunkard…but that may be because he is a little more conservative on that point than Jesus was…but “friend of tax collectors a sinners”,definitely! Those who are accusing francis are sounding strangely familiar, a lot of worry, fear,anger, judgement… if you choose to honor and support Francis you’d have a few things to going for you.

    1.we are not accepting Francis through fear but through trust in God’s promise
    2.he hasn’t actually said or done anything that is inimical to the faith and had actually shown deep pastoral concern. He’s never asked anyone to sin.
    3.we don’t have to scrutinize every letter of church documents for magisterial weight because we assume they are true to the faith we have received..this allows us to simply ask how we can begin to apply the content to our lives.
    4.we can always claim obedience to a divinely appointed superior and therefore we reap the benefits of the evangelical counsels.
    5.Christ was accused the same way by the”faithful”.so we are in good company.
    6.we can open a dialogue with the marginalized and take time to affirm all the great things they have going for them. We can meet them where they are and know that Christ can use our friendship to quietly change hearts. There’s less imposition. More patience.

    Except for the laborious heartbreaking conversations with our trad friends our faith is relaxed and free from conspiratorial worries. The church will weather…just support the captain. Like saint Paul before the shipwreck. ..cut the lifeboats free so none escapes. If we do not stay on the ship we shall all perish.

  21. Avatar Leila Miller says:

    To all: Respectfully, where have I dissented from Catholic teaching? Thanks! (Please provide hard evidence of my statements, in context, and not simply your “sense” of things.) God bless us all; these are historic times!

  22. Avatar Sven says:

    Thanks for the article, Joe. It sums up much of what I’ve felt as well. Thanks to Life Site and other outlets, my friends appear to believe that we no longer have a pope, if we ever had one after Benedict at all. That’s a pretty serious situation to be in. I’m not sure that any one of them would have thought themselves as sedevacantists before, but for all practical purposes, that’s where they’re living now – consciously or not.

  23. Avatar Manuel Dauvin says:

    Leila, you could not have indulged in more profound irony than you did in your last comment. That you should expect hard evidence of your dissent from church teaching!
    Why do you think this site exists?
    Because a whole swath of Catholics have liberated themselves from the need to produce hard evidence that pope Francis has served from church teaching. They fabricate evidence from guessed at intentions out of fear of how a liberal will take the pope’s words. You have no greater evidence against the holy Father than this!
    As for you and your fidelity to the magisterium let me be gracious and place you in the company of st Paul.
    “Under the law [you Leila] are blameless”.
    For your part you may provide evidence that we accuse you of anything more than rashly calumniating as a danger the shepherd of this flock. As a sheep I resent that you would dare talk about my shepherd like you do simply because you want dibs on who gets his attention.
    The good shepherd LEAVES the 99…it doesn’t direct the 99 to have a panic attack once he does. We are safe. ..God gave us solid teaching which Francis reminds us still applies just before he heads out to the “streets and byways” to invite the bums and beggars because those who were invited have proved unworthy.
    As per my comment above that you seemingly ignored. ..have you tried to honestly look at the gospels and see if francis is so unlike his master? If you find him unlike Christ could you provide some hard evidence of Christ’s statements, in context, and not simply your sense of things.
    I am your brother. ..get on board sis and buckle up.

    • Avatar Leila Miller says:

      Manuel, you literally have not provided any evidence that I have dissented from Church teaching. Saying something akin to, “I am upset that you don’t have any warm, happy feelings for the Holy Father!” — that is not evidence of dissent. I, as a Catholic, am not actually obligated think/feel that the pope is doing a good job. You know this, right? I am not obligated to personally like him or his way of leading the Church. I sure hope you understand this. So, show concrete evidence of my dissent or stop accusing. Thanks!

      • Pedro Gabriel Pedro Gabriel says:

        Do you believe that a divorced and remarried person who, on account of mitigating circumstances is not in mortal sin, can receive Communion?

        Do you believe that the application of the death penalty today is inadmissible?

        I do not care for theological justifications in case you answer “no” to any of these question BTW. We already know the talking points very well. I want to know the answer to these questions

      • Avatar Leila Miller says:

        (Sorry, I originally put this comment in the wrong place; trying again)

        Pedro, no I do not. No pope can altar or abrogate the moral law. Those in persistent adulterous situations, with no purpose of amendment, may not receive Our Lord. Are you now saying that the pope has officially changed the moral law? If so, I would like to make sure that my followers are informed that your website (are you an administrator?) believes that the moral law can and has changed, and that a pope has the power to do so (an actual impossibility).

        And, while I am against the death penalty, I do not believe it to be intrinsically evil. Something that has been licit for 2,000 years of Catholicism cannot suddenly become immoral. No pope has such power. In his letter, “Worthiness to Receive Holy Communion,” Cardinal Ratzinger (later Pope Benedict XVI) wrote:

        “Not all moral issues have the same moral weight as abortion and euthanasia. For example, if a Catholic were to be at odds with the Holy Father on the application of capital punishment or on the decision to wage war, he would not for that reason be considered unworthy to present himself to receive Holy Communion. While the Church exhorts civil authorities to seek peace, not war, and to exercise discretion and mercy in imposing punishment on criminals, it may still be permissible to take up arms to repel an aggressor or to have recourse to capital punishment. There may be a legitimate diversity of opinion even among Catholics about waging war and applying the death penalty, but not however with regard to abortion and euthanasia.”

        We may have a diversity of opinion on the issue, full stop.

        No pope has the power to change the moral law in its intrinsic nature. God is the arbiter of the moral law, and the pope (every last one of them) is duty-bound to protect and defend that law. The moral law is not any pope’s personal play thing. I hope that helps!

      • Pedro Gabriel Pedro Gabriel says:

        Okay, thank you. So your answer to both questions is “no”. I already know the talking points you guys use to justify it, so you needn’t bother.

        Your dissent from Magisterial teaching is now, therefore, proven. Which was the point you asked us to prove. Thank you

        So maybe, instead of warning your followers that we believe the moral law changes (a strawman, since what we do is reconcile the most recent Magisterial pronouncements with eternal and immutable moral law), maybe you might consider warming them of your own dissent.

      • Avatar Leila Miller says:

        Don’t be silly. One cannot at the same time hold to the Faith of the Ages and simultaneously dissent from those teachings. I am 100% faithful to the Magisterium, and always will be. I hold the same beliefs now that I held two years ago, five years ago, ten years ago, twenty years ago, and twenty-five years ago (upon my reversion). But keep telling yourself that such consistency is “dissent” and maybe one day you can square that circle. 🙂

      • Pedro Gabriel Pedro Gabriel says:

        Our articles on this site prove that those Magisterial pronouncements are compatible with the Faith of the Ages, unlike your Sola Traditio stand which goes against the Faith of the Ages regarding the assent a faithful should give to the living Magisterium of the Vicar of Christ

        And yes, you dissent. One who does not assent, dissents. And I already have shown you 2 Magisterial teachings of the Church to which you do not give assent, as your answers show

  24. Avatar Manuel Dauvin says:

    Leila, did you not get the allusion, “under the law I was blameless”. I never accused you of saying something I was willing to turn into infidelity… answer pedros questions and we might have something.
    However, I do think you need to address the fact that the trads and you have failed to give the pope what you are asking for yourself. ..hard evidence.
    The posts on this site give hard evidence in defense of the pope.
    As per your feelings.
    When your kids went around undoing all your housework were we obligated to feel you were doing a good job?

    • Avatar Leila Miller says:

      Manuel, I did answer Pedro’s questions. The posts on this site cast aspersions on good people and fellow Catholics (“racist,” “bigoted,” “hateful,” etc.). Shame on the administrators! Name-calling is not discourse. Scott Hahn and Cardinal Sarah endorsed Bishop Schneider’s very clear and pointed new book; are they racist, bigoted haters, too? And, I’ve stated before here that I am not a “trad.” I go to the novus ordo Mass and have done so all my life. Most of the folks who agree with me on these grave issues (like the open idolatry and syncretism at the synod) are also novus ordo folks. So, you grossly underestimate (and misrepresent) just who it is that is tired of the “make a mess” strategy of the current pope. The Church has never been about mess and confusion; she has always been about clarity and light. May we return to such a model. Praying for Papa Francis!

      • Avatar Christopher Lake says:

        Leila,

        In your comment above, you write that:

        “The Church has never been about mess and confusion; she has always been about clarity and light. May we return to such a model.”

        If you read many of the writings of the Church Fathers (both early, medieval, and even later Fathers) on the teaching of “No Salvation Outside the Church,” there often doesn’t seem to be very great hope, to say the least, in said writings, for the salvation of people who are not explicitly professing, visible members of the Catholic Church. Compare and contrast that understanding with the very different, and much, much broader, way that “No Salvation Outside the Church” is understood and formulated in our current Catechism, as promulgated by Pope, and Saint, John Paul II. Bluntly, the newer formulation of this teaching can *seem* like a contradiction to previous Church teaching– and some Catholics actually claim that it *is* a contradiction and still hold to the older understanding, which seems, to them, much more “clear” and “less confusing.”

        Sometimes, in the legitimate process of the development of doctrine in the Church, the very attempts of the Papacy to clarify Church teaching, *can, themselves*, can lead to confusion and resistance on the part of some Catholics who want to hold on to their own understandings of these teachings, *despite the Papal attempts at clarification*. This happened with the development of doctrine relating to “No Salvation Outside the Church,” and it is now happening, among some Catholics, regarding the revision to #2267 of the Catechism on the death penalty. This revision does *not say* that the death penalty is intrinsically evil, but even so, some Catholics still don’t want to accept it, claiming that it contradicts previous Church teaching. Through the centuries to our present day, the Popes can, and do, attempt to clarify Church teaching, but it is also a fact of history that these Papal clarifications don’t always *end* the confusion, and they may well create *more* confusion, for Catholics who refuse to accept the clarifications as authentic, Magisterial teachings.

        You also write, in your comment above, that:

        “…there was “open idolatry and syncretism at the synod.”

        From what I have seen, the Pope has explicitly denied such charges, when they were presented to him. You claim that you are not leaving the Church. In that light, then, I would be interested to hear your answer to the following question, which logically follows from your claims of loyalty to the Church– do Catholics who haven’t separated themselves from the Church (and from the Pope, who is the visible sign of unity in and for the Church) tend to imply that the Pope is an open liar, when it comes to his denials of idolatry and syncretism happening at an officially called Synod of the Church?

      • Avatar Mary Angelica says:

        To be fair, Manuel didn’t call you a trad. He said, ” address the fact that the trads and you have failed to give the pope,” i.e., “trads and you,” not “trads like you” or something like it. I don’t think that the people who oppose Francis are mainly traditionalists, or even mostly Americans. I also don’t care much for that line of reasoning that assumes that those opposing him are racists or whatever have you. Believe it or not, I’m one of these people that have not been too happy with his papacy myself, but mostly for things that he has done rather than things he has said. You don’t have to like him. You don’t have to personally agree with his choice of friends or allies, or with certain decisions he has made. I don’t.

        That being said, your responses seem to indicate that you haven’t really looked into possible attempts to further understand his teachings. You interpreted “under mitigating circumstances is not in mortal sin” as saying that the Pope was doing away with moral law itself, and “inadmissable” as intrinsically evil, and these are rookie misinterpretations of the Pope at this stage in the debate. Have your read his actual documents, and tried to do so in good faith (rather than looking for heresy after hearing some Taylor Marshall video)? You say you tried to defend him for two years before giving up, so I’m presuming Amoris Laetitia was your breaking point? Do you also attribute the views of certain prominent cardinals to him? And if you say that what he teaches contradicts the faith of the ages, have you verified that you actually have a correct view of the “faith of the ages” (for example, the Church’s historical position on the DP is much more complicated than its defenders indicate)?

  25. Avatar Manuel Dauvin says:

    Leila
    Trad is short for someone who won’t let the Holy Father interpret his own intentions. For you to insist that there was open idolatry at the synod contradicts the Pope’s statement that there were no idolatrous intentions.

    As for the aspersions and name-calling that you attribute to this site, may we use your standard to address them?
    Could you provide “hard evidence, in context, and not just your sense of things”? If not, than I’m afraid we are witnessing a little “your being mean” deflection? I have seven kids, “you’re being mean” gets thrown around a lot. We adults are often tempted to try it out when we are on the spot, however, Leila…NO ONE IS BACKING YOU INTO ANY CORNER. You are a solid catholic who will have served the kingdom more with one of your books, say, “primal loss” than I likely could in 4 lifetimes. Keep trucking. .BUT…you are dead wrong about the Holy Father and you and many good Catholics will need humility to address that terminal delusion.

    Take a little time to reflect on the hermeneutics of why a spiritually in tune, totally conservative, magisterially faithful pope would act and speak in the manner pope Francis has. Also consider that “the mess” is being revealed rather than caused.

    Keep writing. ..do not keep company with Taylor Marshall. ..his book “Infiltration” is tantamount to diagnosing the Bride of Christ with an STD. What will our Christian brethren think of us and conversion after reading that. If we say his accusations don’t touch the “Spotless bride” then we don’t have a catholic view of the nature of the Church.

    Good luck, in prayer, seriously. ..a whole decade just for you.

    • Avatar Leila Miller says:

      Manuel, thank you for the decade, truly! I only have a moment so I can’t answer all (I will try later), but are you saying that the Church is “spotless” in the sense that there cannot be MASSIVE sin, corruption, and evil within its wall, structures, and human members? That has never, ever been the teaching of the Church. The Church is holy in her sacraments, in her doctrine, in her saints–in all things supernatural. But not all in the Body of Christ is spotless! Surely you’ve heard the phrase from Pope Paul VI about the “smoke of Satan entering the Church”? Does that mean she is no longer “spotless” but has an STD? I’ve never heard such a claim, ever!

  26. Avatar Manuel Dauvin says:

    Here’s my take on the labels. A trad is a conservative with a pope in their head. A lib is a progressive with a pope in their head. A catholic is a person who sees God fully in charge in the specific strengths and weaknesses of his vicar.
    A catholic will never say the pope is perfect even if he/she maintains that God made the perfect choice. Does that make sense.

  27. Avatar Manuel Dauvin says:

    Or bear with another image.
    The kids.
    One does no chores because they spend all their time reading good books.
    One does no chores because they spend all their time playing video games.
    One tried to change the baby’s diaper and got poop on their hands.
    Who gets the scolding?
    So Francis is having a hard time with this diaper…surely the flailing baby gets some blame.