Papal Biographer: Schism with Benedict XVI as Anti-Pope is Possible
Fallout from “Amoris Laetitia”
The Novus Ordo Wire
Francis shakes hands with his admirer, biographer and long-time Vatican insider Andreas Englisch (left)
Francis’ post-synodal exhortation Amoris Laetitia has caused the predicted chaos among conservative adherents of the Vatican II religion, although a few are still in denial. Approximately 18 hours since its official release, plenty of summaries, commentaries, and reactions continue to pour in …
Meanwhile, the German intellectual review Merkur has published an interview with one of the country’s leading “papal” biographers and Vatican journalists, Andreas Englisch. His best-selling works include biographies of John Paul II, Benedict XVI, and Francis. His latest book, available in the original German here, is entitled “The Fighter in the Vatican: Pope Francis and his Courageous Path.”
Englisch is a long-time Vatican insider and de facto member of the liberal wing of the Vatican II religion, a Modernist through and through. For many years, he accompanied Pope John Paul II on his journeys around the world. He has lived in Rome since 1987. Englisch received particular attention in Germany in 2012, when he predicted in an interview with the TV news channel n-tv the resignation of Benedict XVI roughly 1 year before it actually happened.
Yesterday, April 8, Englisch made an explosive comment in his interview with Merkur, saying that although he does not believe it is likely to happen, he nevertheless believes it is possible that the fallout from the exhortation Amoris Laetitia will trigger a conservative schism with Benedict XVI as Anti-Pope. Here is the relevant excerpt:
Papal Biographer Englisch: Benedict XVI as Anti-Pope is Possible
By Wolfgang DePonte
April 8, 2016
Munich — An interview with papal biographer Andreas Englisch about the document Amoris Laetitia. He says: It is possible that there will now be a split in the church with Benedict XVI as Antipope.
Englisch: Yes, but [Francis] also says that the Church’s ideas about relationship and marriage are outdated. And that the Church was much too rigid.
In other words, he’s criticizing the [Church’s] attitude of the past.
Englisch: Yes. This is exactly what pains the conservatives the most. It is a huge defeat [for them] — and creates a strained situation.
Englisch: The super-conservatives have always said, when a Pope gives Communion to the remarried for the first time, he is no longer Catholic! Then there will be a split in the church like in 1054 — when the Orthodox Church was formed.
With Pope Benedict?
Englisch: Exactly! I do not think this is likely [to happen]. But for the first time in centuries, we are in a situation in which this would be possible. It has never happened before that there was a Pope who could say, my successor is not Catholic. A number of conservatives would wish for that: a small flock with no more than a tenth of all [current] members of the church.
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