Catholic academics and pastors appeal to the College of Cardinals over Amoris laetitia

Catholic academics and pastors appeal to the College of Cardinals over Amoris laetitia

[“Where’s the beef?” – i.e. the text of the statement? (Answer: See comment beginning “Libellus of Condemned Errors” below.) Must all signatories except for the Latin Mass Society chairman remain anonymous for fear of ecclesial and/or academic reprisal? Aren’t some of them immune from such so that we can know of the names of some of the “notables” protesting Amoris Laetitia?]

Joseph Shaw

I have been asked to act as spokesman for the group – of whom I am a rather undistinguished member – who have signed a letter to the Cardinals and also the Patriarchs, asking them to approach the Holy Father to clarify the teaching of the Church in light of Amoris laetitia. It is hardly controversial that the document is being read in widely different ways, some of them quite at odds with the perenial teaching of the Church, and all we are asking is that Pope Francis make clear that putative heretical implications of the document are just that: heretical.

Press Release

A group of Catholic academics and pastors has submitted an appeal to Cardinal Angelo Sodano, Dean of the College of Cardinals in Rome, requesting that the Cardinals and Eastern Catholic Patriarchs petition His Holiness, Pope Francis, to repudiate a list of erroneous propositions that can be drawn from a natural reading of the post-synodal Apostolic Exhortation Amoris laetitia. During the coming weeks this submission will be sent in various languages to every one of the Cardinals and Patriarchs, of whom there are 218 living at present.

Describing the exhortation as containing “a number of statements that can be understood in a sense that is contrary to Catholic faith and morals,” the signatories submitted, along with their appeal, a documented list of applicable theological censures specifying “the nature and degree of the errors that could be attributed to Amoris laetitia.”

Among the 45 signatories are Catholic prelates, scholars, professors, authors, and clergy from various pontifical universities, seminaries, colleges, theological institutes, religious orders, and dioceses around the world. They have asked the College of Cardinals, in their capacity as the Pope’s official advisers, to approach the Holy Father with a request that he repudiate “the errors listed in the document in a definitive and final manner, and to authoritatively state that Amoris laetitia does not require any of them to be believed or considered as possibly true.”

“We are not accusing the pope of heresy,” said a spokesman for the authors, “but we consider that numerous propositions in Amoris laetitia can be construed as heretical upon a natural reading of the text. Additional statements would fall under other established theological censures, such as scandalous, erroneous in faith, and ambiguous, among others.”

The 1983 Code of Canon Law states that “According to the knowledge, competence, and expertise which they possess, they [the Christian faithful] have the right and even at times the duty to manifest to the sacred pastors their opinion on matters which pertain to the good of the Church and to make their opinion known to the rest of the Christian faithful” (CIC, can. 212 §3).

The thirteen-page document quotes nineteen passages in the exhortation which seem to conflict with Catholic doctrines. These doctrines include the real possibility with the grace of God of obeying all the commandments, the fact that certain kinds of act are wrong in all circumstances, the headship of the husband, the superiority of consecrated virginity over the married life, and the legitimacy of capital punishment under certain circumstances. The document also argues that the exhortation undermines the Church’s teaching that divorced and civilly remarried Catholics who have made no commitment to continence cannot be admitted to the sacraments while they remain in that state.
The spokesman said, “It is our hope that by seeking from our Holy Father a definitive repudiation of these errors we can help to allay the confusion already brought about by Amoris laetitia among pastors and the lay faithful. For that confusion can be dispelled effectively only by an unambiguous affirmation of authentic Catholic teaching by the Successor of Peter.”

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18 comments on “Catholic academics and pastors appeal to the College of Cardinals over Amoris laetitia

  1. Libellus of Condemned Errors regarding ‘Amoris Laetitia’


    Libellus of Condemnation of the Errors Contained in, presupposed by, or underlying the document ‘Amoris Laetitia’

    Mindful of the teaching of Our Most High Lord, Jesus Christ, that our “Yes”, be a “yes” and our “No”, a “no”, and, similarly mindful of the teaching of His Vicar on Earth, Pope Pius VI, of good memory, who taught:

    “Whenever it becomes necessary to expose statements which disguise some suspected error or danger, under the veil of ambiguity, one must denounce the perverse meaning under which the error opposed to Catholic Truth is camouflaged”

    We the members of Veri Catholici wish to express our loyalty to the faith which we have received from the lips of Christ through the preaching of the Apostles, as handed down in the Catholic Church and fortified by the infallible Magisterium of the Church, in condemning the so called Apostolic Exhortation, “Amoris Laetitia” as a work of deceit and trickery, error and heresy, among which errors we condemn the following:

    Against Modernism

    We condemn with St. Pius X, the notion that the dogmas of the faith evolve or that the Church comes to a more clear understanding of the truth by means of the exertions of men who strive to accommodate the teachings of Christ and the Apostles to the desires, customs, manners or culture of the age in which they live.

    Against False Pastoralism

    We condemn the notion that the truth of the Catholic Faith regarding Marriage can be rightly taught and pastorally applied by the omission of the word, “adultery”, entirely absent from the document, as Dr. Anna M. Silva observes.

    We condemn the notion that for a Catholic the moral law or moral precepts of the Old and New Testaments are an ideal to aimed for and not obligations which must be observed as the bare minimum of Christian life, since Our Lord and Savior commanded all of us, “If you love Me, keep My commandments”, not “If you love Me, heed My counsels”.

    We condemn the notion that public sinners can no longer be said categorically to be in the state of mortal sin, or sinners, or sinful, or living lives of sin, or addicted to sin.

    We condemn the use of prolix language to hide or cause one to forget the immutable truths of the Faith as taught by Christ and His Apostles and handed down from time immemorial in the Church.

    We condemn the use of the assertion of Catholic Truth to disarm the faithful from those portions of the document which are rife with error, blasphemy and heresy.

    We condemn as a false pastoral ethic, that the Clergy not preach and teach to the entire faithful or to any individual believer, that adultery is mortally sinful.

    We condemn as a false pastoral ethic, that the Clergy remain silent or not publicly and habitually disapprove of adultery or divorce.

    We condemn as cruel and heartless the notion that it is morally licit to content habitual public sinners with integration into the life of the parish, when they have refused to repent and leave their sinful life, and not to discomfort them habitually so long as they remain such with the timeless Apostolic practice of refusing them sacrament and human society.

    We condemn as false and injurious to good morals and a right formation of conscience the notion that habitual mortal sinners should not be made to feel excommunicated when they have habitually refused repentance.

    We condemn the hypocrisy of a pastor who would write, “Naturally, if someone flaunts an objective sin as if it were part of the Christian ideal, or wants to impose something other than what the Church teaches, he or she can in no way presume to teach or preach to others” (AL 297) all the while crafting a document to exculpate sinners and fault the pastors of souls who apply the apostolic and traditional discipline of the Church for them.

    We condemn as a false pastoral ethic, the preference for a sacramental discipline which causes confusion over one which is clear and black-and-white.

    We condemn as deceitful the promulgation of an Exhoration which explicitly asserts not to impose new rules with orders from the Apostolic See to Episcopal conferences regarding the reporting of how the document is to be implemented.

    We condemn as false and erroneous the pastoral pratice which proposes all questions for self reflection for habitual public sinners but those which regard the absolute necessity of observance of the divine and moral precepts as a condition of eternal salvation and the immediate necessary danger of eternal damnation on account of their objective non conformity with these.

    Against False Morality

    We condemn with Trent the notion that what God has commanded is too difficult to observe, or that He has not, does not or will not give sufficient grace to observe each and all of His precepts.

    We condemn the notion that a catechesis which merits the name ‘right and catholic’, can be given in which there is no mention of the absolute necessity of the observance of God’s commandments as a precondition for the gift of eternal salvation.

    We condemn as false and heretical the assertion that “it can no longer be simply said that all those in any “irregular” situation are living in a state of mortal sin and are deprived of sanctifying grace” (AL 301), since it is de fide that mortal sin deprives a soul of sanctifying grace, as the Apostle St. John teaches.

    We condemn as false that assertion that though “a subject may know full well the rule, yet have great difficulty in understanding its inherent value“, that therefore he may be licitly allowed to transgress it, or counseled or permitted to do so.

    We condemn as false, the notion that one can avoid all sin by not making a decision, when their objective moral practice is not in conformity with the objective standards of the divine, moral or natural law, since a deliberate sin of omission in the observances of these laws in grave matters is mortal.

    We condemn as deceitful and a trickery the application of a quotation by the Angelic Doctor, when speaking of those with habitual grace, to those who are in the state of mortal sin.

    We condemn as false and blasphemous the notion that God Himself might inspire a soul to take a step towards being better disposed to repentance and on that basis absolve them from the moral obligation thereof in that moment of repentance or account that dead work as meritorious of justification.

    We condemn as deceitful the quotation of the Angelic Doctor in regard to the difficulty in understanding the application of moral principles in detailed cases, as if he were speaking of the failure of the principles themselves or their non applicability to such cases.

    We condemn the notion that the natural law, inscribed by God into all things, is not an a priori set of moral obligations universally binding all human individuals.

    We condemn as false and blasphemous the assertion that the process of better disposing oneself to the grace of conversion is a process of sanctification, as such an error revives the error of the Pharisees which regarded works of the Law as meritorious of or effective out of themselves of the grace of justification or sanctification.

    We condemn as false, a contradiction in terms and heretical the notion that a soul in the state of mortal sin can grow in grace, by whatever means, while remaining in such a state.

    We condemn as false and heretical the assertion that the term “mortal sin”, or “deadly sin” no longer be used of public sinners who violate a grave Divine precept revealed by God.

    We condemn the false quotation of the writings of John Paul II for the purpose of refuting his condemnation of the law of graduality in morals.

    We condemn the false notion that the obligations of a subjective false conscience take priority over the objective obligation of the moral or sacramental law.

    Against the errors opposed to Catholic Ecclesiology

    We condemn the notion that one can share spiritually in the life of the Church but incompletely, since all things spiritual are simple and are not capable of division.

    We likewise condemn the notion that those in mortal sin share spiritually in the life of the Church.

    We condemn the notion that those in mortal sin have a way of participating in the life of the Church which is proper to those who remain in mortal sin, rather than by repenting of their sin and returning to the life of grace and the Sacraments.

    We condemn as false and heretical the notion that those in habitual mortal sin, public or private, ought to be integrated into the life of the Church in any other way than by repentance and confession.

    We condemn as blasphemous and heretical the notion that the Immaculate Bride of Christ, Holy Mother Church, should befoul Herself with the sins of Her children or accommodate Herself or Her manners of practicing pastoral charity with the mundane and corrupt values and habits of the world.

    We condemn as false and erronous the notion that in the pastoral ministry charity should be preached before faith and repentance, since for sinful man it is only from the fear of God that the love of God arises.

    Against the cultivated Abuse of the Sacraments

    We condemn the notion that under any pretext of circumstance or conscience an individual can exempt himself or be exempted by his confessor from the obligation of receiving the Sacraments with repentance and faith, or in the state of grace.

    We condemn the notion that it is morally licit, and not meritorious of eternal and everlasting damnation, for an individual to receive the Sacraments in the state of mortal sin, or for a Confessor to grant a sinner to so receive the Sacraments of the living in such a state.

    We condemn the notion that an individual who has admitted the commission of an act which is gravely immoral in se, and is not repentant, can be permitted under any pretext by one who knows this in the external forum, from receiving a Sacrament.

    We condemn the notion, that a habitual mortal sinner can by his evil habit of sin come to be so inculpable of his individual acts of sin that he could approach the Sacraments without full repentance, perfect contrition and Catholic faith, or be allowed licitly to do so by any authority on Earth.

    We condemn the blasphemous and heretical assertion that the Confessional is or can be a “torture chamber”, since such an affirmation is not fitting for a Christian mouth but for the mouth of a demon.

    We condemn the assertion that the perennial and received sacramental discipline of denying the Sacraments to habitual or public sinners is cruel, in appropriate to modern sensibilities, or in need of a reformulation.

    We condemn as blasphemous, heretical and a depravity of judgement the assertion that those who hold to the traditional sacramental discipline are Pharisees or rigorists.

    We condemn any insinuation or effort “to overcome” the current “forms of exclusion” which have been part of the traditional sacramental discipline in the Church from time immemorial.

    Against Errors opposed to Catholic Faith in the Last Things

    We condemn the notion that “no one can be condemned forever”, or that the affirmation of eternal or perpetual condemnation of individuals in general, is contrary to “the logic of the Gospel”, because Our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, in fulfillment of the will of His Eternal Father, denounced the Pharasees of the Old Law, saying emphatically, “You shall die in your sins”, and foretold that He would at the Last Judgement say to the wicked, “Depart from Me into the everlasting fire prepared for the Devil and his angels”.

    We condemn the notion that Christ’s sacred ministers, in fulfillment of their Apostolic duty, cannot threaten with eternal damnation individuals who commit, persist, approve or condone of moral acts of whatever kind which are formally contrary to God’s law, according to genus, species, intention or circumstance.

    We condemn the notion that Christ’s sacred ministers and all the faithful in fidelity to their Baptism, cannot or ought not condemn such moral acts as meritorious of eternal and everlasting damnation in the fires of Hell, or that in doing so they transgress the obligations of divine charity.

    We condemn the heretical assertion or affirmation that that there are or there might be no souls condemned in Hell or that the salvation of all or of anyone in particular can be presumed a priori.

    We condemn the heretical assertion or affirmation that, Hell is not a physical place, since Christ Himself affirmed that in Gehenna souls and bodies will be punished with spiritual and physical sufferings.

    We condemn as heretical the assertion that after death the human soul does not continue to exist.

    We condemn the notion that at death there is no particular judgement of the individual.

    We condemn the notion that at death an individual is judged only on his fundamental option for or against God, and not on the particular observance of the divine precepts.

    Against the Errors opposed to the Sacrament of Matrimony

    We condemn with Trent as false and heretical the notion that the state of virginity chosen for the love of God and the pursuit and observance of evangelical perfection is not of itself superior to the state of holy Matrimony, confected with due ritual in the Church.

    We condemn the notion that natural marriage or sacramental marriage is an ideal to be strived for and/or not a divine institution the obligations of which bind all men and women who wish to form a family or unite together as a couple.

    We condemn the notion that the reception of the Sacrament of Matrimony is not a grave moral obligation for all Catholics who wish to have children or use the powers of procreation which God has given them, and that it is merely an enrichment option for their personal betterment.

    We condemn the notion that the two ends of marriage, the procreative and the unitive are equal or that the latter is not subordinated to the former.

    We condemn the notion that Catholics who marry civilly and not in the Church are “often not motivated by prejudice or resistance to a sacramental union, but by cultural or contingent situations”, as if preference of the values of the world did not constitute prejudice to or resistance toward the acceptance of the teaching of Christ on the Sacrament.

    We condemn the notion that any deliberate use of the procreative power of the human body, outside of matrimony is morally licit at any time for any person.

    We reject as blasphemous and heretical the notion that adulterous or impure unions can in any manner reflect the love of the God Who is infinitely pure and must be worshiped in spirit and in truth.

    We reject as false and a sacrilege of Scripture the implication that Jesus spoke to the Samaritan woman with a purpose of sanctifying the adulterous union in which He found her.

    We condemn the notion that an individual living in adultery has a greater moral obligation to remain in an adulterous union, on account of the children, than of separating from it on account of Christ’s precept against adultery.

    We condemn the notion that the family or marriage can be in truth constituted by anything other than the union of 1 man with 1 woman.

    We condemn the notion that Catholics or any human person ought to respect and accept any other notion of marriage or family, than that constituted by 1 man and 1 woman.

    We condemn as deceitful and malicious the use of quotations from Magisterial documents which regard the Sacrament of Matrimony to defend adulterous or illicit unions.

    We condemn the false notion that the validity of a marriage can be legitimately judged by the individual without seeking recourse to ecclesiastical authority, as if the jurisdiction of tribunal pertained by some right to private judgement properly or falsely formed.

    We condemn as blasphemous and heretical the notion that the Gospel of Faith and Repentance which Christ preached from the first days of His public ministry is not a easy solution to the moral difficulty in which habitual public sinners find themselves.

    Against the Abuse of the Pastoral Office

    We condemn as injurious to ecclesiastical discipline and a grave failure of pastoral office to exhort the Clergy not to continue in a faithful adherence to the traditional sacramental discipline, so as to accommodate the corrupt morals and minds of the present age.

    We condemn as grave treachery, the use of the Petrine Office to encourage, promote or dispose souls to accept sin, or to depart from fidelity to Christ, from fidelity to the Apostles, from fidelity to the teachings contained in Sacred Scripture and/or transmitted by Sacred Tradition, under any pretext of love, mercy or compassion.

    We condemn as a grave treachery to and attack upon the unity of the Church, the use of the Petrine Office to encourage local churches to depart from fidelity to Christ, from fidelity to the Apostles, from fidelity to the teachings contained in Sacred Scripture and/or transmitted by Sacred Tradition, under any pretext of love, mercy or compassion.

  2. Petition to Pope Francis to withdraw ‘Amoris Laetitia’

    Your Holiness, in the spirit of the Apostle St. Paul and out of pure fraternal charity and love for your person in this Year of Mercy, we humbly beseech you to read the ‘Libellus of Condemned Errors’ regarding your exhortation, ‘Amoris Laetitia’, and to withdraw the document and personally renounce its errors, for the sake of your eternal salvation and the salvation of hundreds of millions of souls!

    Signed the members and friends of Veri Catholici, who met in conference to discuss ‘Amoris Laetitia’, at Rome, on June 25th, 2016, in person and via Video-Conference, and those of us who could not make it but who are signing after the fact

    • It appears that these folks aren’t *bleeps*. I’m inclined to support them, but before i do, I have to be sure that they believe that there is no salvation outside the Catholic Church, and that personal submission to the Roman Pontiff is necessary for salvation. Not to pick on this group, but they have chosen, rightly I believe, to accuse the Holy Father of heresy and a willful attack on the Faith. Those who take this action must be absolutely clear that they are not fomenting a mutiny or rebellion against the Holy Father. This is not to say I suspect the group.

      Does anyone have more info about them?

      • Franciscan Brother Alexis Bugnolo, a friend of the Saint Benedict Center in Richmond, New Hampshire (and a speaker at their 2014 conference), has a highly favorable opinion of Veri Catholici:
        A New International Catholic Association to oppose the Neo-Gnosticism of Cardinal Kasper & company

        Also, from his website From Rome:

        We are a Proud member of


  3. Petition to all Catholic Bishops

    To all their Eminences the Cardinals of the Holy Roman Church, to all the Bishops of the Catholic Church in communion with the Apostolic See, who are ordinaries or emeriti: We the members and friends of Veri Catholici, in accord with our canonical rights and baptismal duties, do solemnly petition you to intercede, plead and remonstrate with the Holy Father, Pope Francis, regarding the many evils contained in his recent exhortation, “Amoris Laetitia”, and urge him to withdraw the document and renounce its errors, so that he might not merit the eternal opprobium that is due to the promulgator of a document which confuses the faithful and attempts to lead souls away from the Apostolic Teaching.

    * * *

    We would like to solemnly remind you, in this regard, of what is contained under n. 329 of the so-called Penny Catechism, once so popular in the British Isles, namely, that there 9 ways in which one may cause or share in the guilt of another’s sin:

    By counsel.
    By command.
    By consent.
    By provocation.
    By praise or flattery.
    By concealment.
    By being a partner in the sin.
    By silence.
    By defending the ill done.

    Alas, there are too many of you who, in regard to ‘Amoris Laetitia’, having ignored an objective and contextual reading of the document, have sinned by one or more of these sins in its regard.

    We would remind you of the teaching of Vatican I, that this document does not conform to the conditions of an infallible teaching, and that it is your duty in accord with the teaching of the Second Infallible and Sacrosanct Councils of Nicea II (4th anathema) and Trent (Session 13, canon XI), to rebuke Pope Francis, and if he should refuse after 3 rebukes, to declare him to have separated himself from the Apostolic Faith and Church, and thus self-deposed himself from the office of Bishop of Rome: whereupon you should command, beseech and petition the Catholic Cardinals to elect a legitimate successor.

    We invite you to read the Libellus of Condemned Errors in Amoris Laetitia, which we presented and read and approved at our Conference in Rome, on June 25, 2016, so that you may understand how dangerous this document is …

    We the undersigned, so ask with humble and loving faith, in this year of Mercy, a year in which the spiritual works of mercy towards the Holy Father ought not be neglected by anyone, especially yourselves.

    The time for speaking in private has come to an end. Millions of souls are being lost because of your apparent silence and inaction!

    Signed, the Members and Friends of Veri Catholici

  4. On growing a pair


    [Dr. Shaw can claim the title “man” for being (1) a man in se (2) Latin Mass Society Chairman and (3) – as Miss White says – the only one of the Libellus signatories with a pair – to go public]

    JUL 12, 2016 by HILARY WHITE

    So, apparently Joseph Shaw – Latin Mass Society UK – is the only one among them who can claim the title “man”.

    Apart from that, I have few comments.

    Oh, except maybe this one.

    The “Captain’s Balls” scene from movie ‘The Heat’

    This is me in the room with a bishop and a novusordoist conservative.


    Joseph Shaw says:JUL 12, 2016

    Thank you, Hillary.

    But I don’t want to claim any greater degree of machismo than the other signatories of the appeal. The point of the document is not a public denunciation but a private appeal to the Cardinals and Patriarchs. The reason we’ve issued a press release is to prevent it being misrepresented (or, at least, to make that a little harder).

    If the appeal has any positive effect the push-back will almost certainly include a leaking of the text and signatories and a persecution of the latter. I am in an unusually secure position. Many of the other signatories will need your prayers.

    Hilary White says:JUL 12, 2016

    Publish the document itself, with the censures and cross references, and I’ll be impressed…

    or at least, I’ll be slightly less unimpressed.

    This is why it’s been a hugely dumb idea to let laymen study theology and claim the title “theologian”. Because when it comes to the freedom to say something that no one wants to hear, a priest isn’t going to say, “but I have to keep my tenure so I can keep feeding my kids.”

    Yes, it will be bad when the vicious, vindictive bastards we’re fighting discover who everyone is and start turning the screws on. But if you didn’t think this was going to happen, if you were too naive to figure out that you were fighting a war with the very people who hold all the power in your life, you should have learned a respectable trade instead.

    “lay theologian” isn’t something that should ever have come about.

    If it’s not meant to be public, don’t send it to every Cardinal in the world. As long as the statement is widely known, but not publicly available, it will be misinterpreted.

    These people are dumb as planks and can’t conceive of the things we take for granted about how the real world works. I want to line up every lay theologian academic in the world and slap them all until they have some common sense knocked into their idiot skulls.

    There’s a theology conference happening right now in Norcia [Italy, where Miss White lives]. I’m so mad I’m going to go down to the Enoteca to work today, and I’m going to drink a whole mezzo litro of Montefalco and will be lying in wait for any of them who shows up, ready with my slappin’ hand.

  5. Captain Kirk: Mister Spock! Catholic academics and pastors on numerous propositions in Amoris laetitia construed as heretical upon a natural reading of the text and the notion that the natural law, inscribed by God into all things, is not an a priori set of moral obligations universally binding all human individuals….analyze using your usual superior Vulcan logic, the alleged superiority of which, in the interests of ecumenical dialogue and the new evangelization of culture, we will bracket with a phenomenological epoché so as to avoid any logocentric or Eurocentric microaggressions of neo-Pelagian triumphalism which might offend non-Catholics and fideists ….

    Spock: Thank you, Captain. While the theoretical suspension of the claims to efficacy for logic may lead to some ambiguity and confusion in the apprehension of truth, the concern for the feelings and self-esteem of those who do not recognize logic or reason will be observed to create an atmosphere of multiculturalist tolerance and diversity. It should be clarified, however, that during the Year of Mercy under the Bergoglian pontificate, in the interests of ecumenical dialogue and the new evangelization of culture, we do not speak of logic as being superior out of concern for not appearing to be too rigid or judgmental. Beyond the additional multicultural concerns about the logocentric and Eurocentric microaggressions involved in the use of Aristotelian logic in general, there is the matter of neo-Pelagian triumphalism which we must try to avoid so as not to stray from the tolerance and diversity of ecumenical dialogue which is so important in the long march of progressive modernism.

    Captain Kirk: What about the progressive modernist notion that the natural law is not an a priori set of moral obligations universally binding all human individuals and is not inscribed by God into all things?

    Spock: Fascinating, Captain. While the a priori nature of natural law and natural law theory may take some time to explain, the progressive modernist denial of this area of Catholic teaching and the Catholic and Thomistic natural law tradition is a problem which we must address truthfully, Captain.

    Father Mulcahy, S.J.: Father W. Norris Clarke was a stickler on this point of responding to questions truthfully. And, of course, that was a rule in the Society of Jesus back in those days. As I assume it still is in the Latin Mass Society. Let’s see…we should have the answer here somewhere…Oh, yes….

    Secundum hoc ergo veritas sive verum tripliciter invenitur diffiniri. Uno modo secundum illud quod praecedit rationem veritatis, et in quo verum fundatur; et sic Augustinus definit in Lib. Solil.: verum est id quod est; et Avicenna in sua Metaphysic.: veritas cuiusque rei est proprietas sui esse quod stabilitum est ei; et quidam sic: verum est indivisio esse, et quod est. Alio modo definitur secundum id in quo formaliter ratio veri perficitur; et sic dicit Isaac quod veritas est adaequatio rei et intellectus; et Anselmus in Lib. de veritate: veritas est rectitudo sola mente perceptibilis. Rectitudo enim ista secundum adaequationem quamdam dicitur, et philosophus dicit in IV Metaphysic., quod definientes verum dicimus cum dicitur esse quod est, aut non esse quod non est.

    Bob Hope: What’s with all the Latin? I thought Vatican II took care of that….

    Bing: Forget it, Junior!. He’s rolling.

    Father Sarducci: verum est id quod est? You will notice that there is no mention of cows and global warming. Yet….

    Hans Küng: I would like to address that….

    Henry VIII: By the way, I never intended an absolute ban on Latin, but did someone say something about changing the rules on marriage and divorce?

    Thomas More: Let’s all try to keep our heads on.
    I would like to say something about the a priori nature of Natural Law before things get too carried away in a Situation Ethics or Frankfurt School direction….

    Reverend Neuhaus: That’s my opening. Forgive me for interrupting again as aggressive and pushy professional Protestant converts sometimes do, but I would like to say something here about the Naked Public Square in modernity, Max Weber’s concept of disenchantment, and Professor Charles Taylor’s secularization theories….

  6. Captain Kirk: What about the progressive modernist notion that the natural law is not an a priori set of moral obligations universally binding all human individuals and is not inscribed by God into all things?

    Spock: Before we get to the Catholic understanding of natural law theory, we should address some of the terms of the debate. If I may quote from the ship’s computer:
    “The Latin phrases a priori (lit. “from the earlier”) and a posteriori (lit. “from the latter”) are philosophical terms of art popularized by Immanuel Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason (first published in 1781, second edition in 1787), one of the most influential works in the history of philosophy. However, in their Latin forms they appear in Latin translations of Euclid’s Elements, of about 300 BC, a work widely considered during the early European modern period as the model for precise thinking.

    These terms are used with respect to reasoning (epistemology) to distinguish necessary conclusions from first premises (i.e., what must come before sense observation) from conclusions based on sense observation (which must follow it). Thus, the two kinds of knowledge, justification, or argument[clarification needed] may be glossed:
    A priori knowledge or justification is independent of experience, as with mathematics (3+2=5), tautologies (“All bachelors are unmarried”), and deduction from pure reason (e.g., ontological proofs).
    A posteriori knowledge or justification is dependent on experience or empirical evidence, as with most aspects of science and personal knowledge.

    There are many points of view on these two types of knowledge, and their relationship is one of the oldest problems in modern philosophy….”

    Although some students may have read Harry Jaffa, given the popularized Kantian usage and misunderstandings, the applications to natural law theory will involve some difficulties and confusion as we continue and attempt to approach the Aristotelian and Thomistic foundations, Captain.

    Thomas More: Yes, I was hoping we would get to that.

    Sir William Blackstone: Indeed.

    John Rawls: I would like to say something….

    Professor Sartre: I don’t mean to interrupt, but where can we get some popcorn?

  7. Captain Kirk: So some knowledge of Latin and Aristotelian and Thomistic natural law concepts are necessary for discussing and explaining this issue? Can we do that without falling into the Eurocentric microaggressions which might lead to accusations of neo-Pelagian triumphalism and excessive ultra-conservative rigidity?

    Spock: That might be tricky, Captain.
    We haven’t covered deductive reasoning in Aristotle’s Ἀναλυτικὰ Πρότερα yet.

    Reverend Neuhaus: That’s my opening to get back to the Naked Public Square in modernity, Max Weber’s concept of disenchantment, and Professor Charles Taylor’s secularization theories….

  8. Captain Kirk: What is Aristotle’s….I’m not even sure how to pronounce this….Ἀναλυτικὰ Πρότερα?

    Spock: The Analytica Protera? That is known as Aristotle’s Prior Analytics, Captain.

    Captain Kirk: I suppose you will explain this in more detail.

    Spock: Affirmative, Captain. “The Prior AnalyticsAnalytica Priora) is Aristotle’s work on deductive reasoning, which is known as his syllogistic. Being one of the six extant Aristotelian writings on logic and scientific method, it is part of what later Peripatetics called the Organon. Modern work on Aristotle’s logic builds on the tradition started in 1951 with the establishment by Jan Lukasiewicz of a revolutionary paradigm. The Jan Lukasiewicz approach was reinvigorated in the early 1970s in a series of papers by John Corcoran and Timothy Smiley—which inform modern translations of Prior Analytics by Robin Smith in 1989 and Gisela Striker in 2009.

    The term “analytics” comes from the Greek words ἀναλυτός (analutos “solvable”) and ἀναλύω (analuo “to solve”, literally “to loose”). However, in Aristotle’s corpus, there are distinguishable differences in the meaning of ἀναλύω and its cognates. There is also the possibility that Aristotle may have borrowed his use of the word “analysis” from his teacher Plato. On the other hand, the meaning that best fits the Analytics is one derived from the study of Geometry and this meaning is very close to what Aristotle calls έπιστήμη (episteme), knowing the reasoned facts. Therefore, Analysis is the process of finding the reasoned facts.

    Aristotle’s Prior Analytics represents the first time in history when Logic is scientifically investigated.”

    Aristotle: They’re only lecture notes taken by some students of mine.

    Plato: I thought I heard that you wanted them published.

    Aristotle: Well, it’s not as well known as The Republic, of course. But συλλογισμός is hard for some people to pronounce.

    Plato: Particularly with the ban on Ancient Greek and Dead Western Males.

    Father Copleston, S.J.: We have been trying to stimulate a revival in the Ratio Studiorum.

    Reverend Neuhaus: Some have even suggested traces of Natural Law in the American founding and the U.S. Constitution.

    Sulu: Captain, there is something appearing on our screen that you should take a look at…..

  9. Father Mulcahy, S.J.: Oh, yes, I remember now. This might make a good segue back to the Quaestiones disputatae de virtutibus of St. Thomas Aquinas. Veritas est adaequatio rei et intellectus (“Truth is the equation [or adequation] of thing and intellect”)…. Now, Aristotelian natural law was quite a….

  10. Father Mulcahy, S.J.: Of course, Father Lonergan had some original and unique ideas that the students at Toronto were always discussing and debating.

    Father Murray, S.J.: That’s true.

    Father Lonergan, S.J.: There are eight basic ones that we should cover in this seminar….

    Father Mulcahy, S.J: Fortunately for them, Father Murray and Father Weigel never lived to see when the Latin requirement was dropped after Vatican II….Of course, the basic theology course was also changed.

    Reverend Neuhaus: Yes, that became clear in our ecumenical discussions with modernist seminarians in the Seventies. Although this is not as well understood now.

  11. Father Sarducci: We have a seminar course on Lonergan over at the Gregorian.

    Bill Murray: I don’t mean to interrupt, but I have a question about the use of rectitūdō in the Quaestiones disputatae de virtutibus of St. Thomas Aquinas.
    What kind of Latin noun is that?

    Father Mulcahy, S.J.: Oh, that’s a very good question. The word rectitūdō, ‎rectitūdinis, is a third declension noun. It means straightness, directness,
    and uprightness in the sense of moral rectitude. Very good, Bill. A fine question.

    Bill Murray: What I was thinking about was where St. Thomas writes:
    “et Anselmus in Lib. de veritate: veritas est rectitudo sola mente perceptibilis.
    Because Latin might be something that could work on Gozer the Gozerian.

    Father Karras, S.J.: And Anselm in his book on Truth said: “Truth is a rectitude perceptible only by the mind.” The word rectitūdō is in the Nominative case.

    Father Copleston, S.J.: I have a chapter on St. Anselm which we should take up as we continue to stimulate a scholastic revival in the Ratio Studiorum.

  12. Father Sarducci: Forgive me for interrupting, but I believe Bill meant the Quaestiones Disputatae de Veritate which I can recommend reading.

  13. Bill Murray: If it’s Latin it will still work on Gozer.

    Bill Murray: Medieval Latin will work on Gozer, right?

  14. Dana: You mean, you don’t know whether Latin will work on this Sumerian demonic entity?

    Dana: Come on, will medieval Latin work on Gozer or not?

    Bill: I think so. At least, it worked in The Exorcist.

    Wed , 9:41 PM

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