Hilary White: A New Schism for a New Church

[ For complete article: remnantnewspaper.com/web/index.php/fetzen-fliegen/item/2788-a-new-schism-for-a-new-church

The other day, someone out there in blogland asked a question that has been in my own mind for nearly three years. In essence, the question was, “How can a pope be a schismatic? If schism means refusal of submission to Peter, how can a pope be in schism from himself?” This logically leads to the next question: if Bergoglio is a heretic, and we are obliged to resist him, how then are we not, by definition, the schismatics?

People feel they are caught in an impossible dilemma; if the pope preaches heresy as though it were Catholic truth (and no bishop condemns this and calls him to account) are we not obliged to obey him? If not, then how are we not in open rebellion against the pope? But how can we who love Christ and wish to obey His commandments, follow this pope in his many brazen rebellions – his “manifest heresies” – against divinely authored truth?

When the early martyrs were presented with a bowl of incense and ordered to pinch a grain on pain of death, it was easy to see which choice was the right one, even if they were afraid to make it. We had the bishops and the popes leading the way to the arena. What do we do when it is the pope who holds the bowl out to us and demands we abandon Christ?


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13 comments on “Hilary White: A New Schism for a New Church

  1. [Hermeneutic of rupture? Hermeneutic of continuity? Or hermeneutic of the continuity of rupture?]

    Rick Fitzgibbons, MD

    Exploring the excessive anger at St. John Paul II

    October 3, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) — As a psychiatrist with an expertise in the nature, origins and treatment of excessive anger, it has become clear to me that numerous statements and programs from the Vatican demonstrate the expression of excessive anger at St. John Paul II’s remarkable legacy and prophetic writings.

    The new light shed upon Our Lord’s plan for marriage and sexuality, so badly needed in our time, has been very beneficial to Catholic youth, marriages, families, educators as well as the priesthood and the episcopacy over the past 35 years. It has begun to have a noticeable and constructive effect upon marriage preparation and the priestly vocation. Attempts at undermining St. John Paul II’s legacy are, therefore, almost inexplicable.

    As we follow the continuous succession of ambiguous statements from the Vatican, it’s troubling to see the obvious anger expressed toward St. John Paul II and his teaching. This anger is not expressed in a clear and direct manner, but rather in an anger of the passive-aggressive type, i.e., anger expressed in a covert or masked way. This anger has been manifested primarily by ignoring his work, much as a spouse expresses anger in marriage by the silent treatment.

    The deliberate ignoring of The Role of the Christian Family in the Modern World (Familiaris Consortio) in the recent Synods on the Family and in exhortation following them, Amoris Laetitia, shocked many Catholic marital and family scholars, and mental health professionals, like myself, whose professional work with youth, marriages and families has been enormously helped by St. John Paul II’s historic and groundbreaking apostolic exhortation, accurately described as the Magna Carta on the Catholic family.

    The patent anger against the legacy of St. John Paul II, however, has become more obvious and out in the open in a number of recent actions, particularly the seriously flawed Meeting Point online sex education program for youth from the Pontifical Council of the Family that was released at World Youth Day. This program demonstrates planned ambiguity by citing some material from Theology of the Body, while at the same time acting against Familiaris Consortio and the teaching of the Church by removing the vital role of parents in the formation of their children in this area. The program initially posted was also a threat to the psychological and spiritual well-being of youth through its use of pornographic images that were similar to the pornography used by adult sexual predators with adolescents. The initial images that are meant to sexually arouse adolescents are still available for viewing and raise serious questions about the basic integrity of the MP program.

    Amoris Laetitiae, n. 280 continues the rejection of Church teaching through the support of sex education in schools and the exclusion of the role of parents. The Meeting Point and the AL, n.280, fail to understand both the risk to youth by excluding parents and the teaching of the Church. This omission of the role of parents severely damages trust in the Church. The trust in the Episcopate and priesthood has already been harmed by the crisis in the Church, described by Dr. Paul McHugh, a member of the first review board, as the “massive homosexual predation of adolescent males.”

    These radically new approaches to the sexual education of Catholic youth differ totally from the teaching of St. John Paul II. He wrote:

    “Sex education, which is a basic right and duty of parents, must always be carried out under their attentive guidance, whether at home or in educational centers chosen and controlled by them,” Familiaris Consortio, n. 37.

    Also, the many messages that undermine Catholic teaching have remained without clarification, such as supporting same-sex and cohabiting unions in the interim report of the 2014 Synod, and now the degrading of Catholic morality by welcoming (in however restricted a fashion) to Communion those who are living in mortal sin in the recent document from the Argentinean Bishops Conference. Pope Francis claimed this action is supported by chapter eight in Amoris Laetitia. This position, however, directly opposes St. John Paul II’s merciful writing on this sensitive issue in Familiaris Consortio, n. 84, and 2,000 years of Church teaching, which forbid such a practice.

    St. John Paul II wrote:

    The Church reaffirms her practice, which is based upon Sacred Scripture, of not admitting to Eucharistic Communion divorced persons who have remarried. They are unable to be admitted thereto from the fact that their state and condition of life objectively contradict that union of love between Christ and the Church, which is signified and effected by the Eucharist. Besides this, there is another special pastoral reason: If these people were admitted to the Eucharist, the faithful would be led into error and confusion regarding the Church’s teaching about the indissolubility of marriage.

    The passive-aggressive anger against St. John Paul II’s legacy is difficult to understand and, indeed, causing extreme anxiety for millions of Catholics worldwide, the faithful in every vocation, who were feeling more hopeful about a renewal of Catholic marriage, family life, youth, Catholic education, the priesthood and the episcopate due to the greater understanding and commitment to the fullness of the Catholic truth on matters of sexual morality described in FC and VS.

    In an attempt to understand what is occurring, I have been helped by reviewing Eric Erickson’s important work, Young Man Luther, in which he identifies Luther’s very difficult childhood experiences with an abusive father and a cold mother. Childhood anger with authority figures is not often expressed in youth because of the fears of the one or both parents.

    However, as I’ve described in an APA anger textbook, anger in its early stages is associated with the sadness of a hurt, but later with pleasure in its expression. The anger, meant for Luther’s father, would later be misdirected at the papacy, sexual morality, the Eucharist, and the Sacrament of Marriage – and was undoubtedly a source of pleasure for Luther.

    This same psychological dynamic may be occurring now behind the actions against the teachings of the towering spiritual father and saint of the family, St. John Paul II, and the Church.

    In the present stormy seas, when the German Bishops Conference is rejecting the teachings of the Church on sexual morality, marriage, and the Eucharist (accompanied by papal silence and support of a Protestant-style decentralization of the papacy), the Church should not turn away from St. John Paul II but rather embrace his teaching more fully in every marriage, family, youth program, parish, school, seminary, diocese and religious community.

    Truly excellent work has been done to bring to all levels of the public outstanding applications of St. John Paul’s Theology of the Body (ToB), which have already been well received by Catholic families and youth. Catholics everywhere, as well as the non-Catholics worldwide that follow Catholic teaching with interest, deserve a defense and development of St. John Paul II’s teaching in this and other matters, and must resist current covert attempts at burying it, along with Familiaris Consortio, by those who are angry or resentful of their natural authority.

    The time has come to bring to an end the recent confusion caused by deliberate and planned ambiguity.

  2. Hogwash…

    Simplest explanation: Even JP II wasn’t “liberal enough” for the cadre. They almost got Bergoglio into position back in 2005.

    That will probably never dawn on most Neo-Kathlyckx this side of eternity.

  3. Captain Kirk: Mister Spock! Anger of the passive-aggressive type, expressed in a covert or masked way…. analyze using your usual superior Vulcan logic which we no longer actually call “superior” so as not to be accused of excessive rigidity or neo-Pelagian triumphalism by progressive modernists, secular humanists, and liberal multiculturalists who disparage Aristotelian logic in various passive-aggressive microaggressions sometimes bordering on hysteria….

    Spock: Is this an underhanded and subtle way of accusing me or are you just teasing me, Captain?

    Captain Kirk: Oh, did that seem too passive-aggressive, Mister Spock? I can rephrase the question if you thought I was trying to call attention to your own passive-aggressive microaggressions. Or we could fight for it, if you prefer more direct expressions of aggression.

    Küng Fu: Modernism the Legend Continues

    Master Po: What is troubling you, Grasshopper?

    Kwai Chang: Well, Master, sometimes I notice that you are passive-aggressive in the way you pose annoying Zen questions.

    Master Po: But I am supposed to do that, Grasshopper. How would you ever learn if I did not attack your pride and force you to question your own knowledge with passive-aggressive Zen questioning?

    Kwai Chang: Perhaps it is some subconscious failing or lack of achievement in your own life, Master, that leads you to hide in this monastery attacking novices much younger and less experienced than you because this advantage in the teaching relationship massages your self-esteem in ways you could not achieve in the outside world if you were forced into the rat race, keeping up with Mr. Jones and directly interacting with the Social Darwinists of modernity who are your own age.

    Hans Küng: I would like to address that and issue a microaggression warning….

    Robin: Gosh, Batman, is there a problem with anger of the passive-aggressive type, expressed in covert or masked ways?

    Batman: Liberals, progressive modernists, Frankfurt School social theorists, and deep-cover Communist Fifth Columnists with body image and weight issues will sometimes do that, Robin, but I hope you’re not just trying to change the subject to avoid starting to work on your Latin homework at Fordham Prep.

    Robin: Why would I do that, Batman?

    Batman: An idle mind is a terrible and wasteful thing, Robin. It may start with putting off Latin homework on week nights, but pretty soon, before you know it, you’ll be hanging out on street corners or by phone booths in parking lots of 7-Eleven stores and stealing hubcaps or setting off M-80s in milk cartons with other juvenile delinquents who put off attending to their Latin homework.

    Robin: I would never do that, Batman!

    Batman: Tell me, Robin, you haven’t been reading too many comic books, have you?

    • Captain Kirk: Spock, I’m sick of your half-breed passive-aggressive interference. You clearly have sublimated resentment of your father for marrying a human and now take pleasure in focusing your anger at me, the top graduate of Star Fleet Academy, for out-ranking you. We humans have seen this kind of anger before, expressed at the greatest saintly pontiff of the 20th Century because of his inspirational discussions of the theological dimensions of sexual arousal. You fancy your Enneagram number to be a five, but you are actually a rigid, judgmental type one, as the Talosians once confided to me.

      • Spock: If this is a masked attempt to distract attention away from the WikiLeaks Berlin press conference disclosures about the corruption of Hillary Clinton, perhaps we should take this up after you have had some time for reflection, Jim. May I suggest Erich Fromm’s The Art of Loving. It could be your wounded inner child expressing resentment toward superior Vulcan logic which is at issue, Captain.

        “Pay no attention to Mister Spock…I will control the horizontal….”

        Captain Kirk: Enough with your Vulcan logic, Spock!

        Spock: There is no need to get emotional, Captain. I suggest that you read Erich Fromm’s The Art of Loving so that you can come to terms with these underlying issues.

        Captain Kirk: That’s just what we need. A Vulcan that reads Erich Fromm.

        Darth Vader: If you give in to the Dark Side of your inner child, we can get rid of Spock and rule the universe together, Captain.

        Dr. Bones McCoy: Surely it couldn’t hurt to read the book, Jim.

        Spock: Doctor McCoy makes a valid point, Jim.

        Dr. Bones McCoy: You actually enjoy being passive-aggressive to get under his skin!

        ScottyThe Art of Loving we have a ship to run!

        • Dr. Bones McCoy: Can’t you get it between your green-blooded Vulcan pointy ears that this bromance with Jim has gone on much too long, Spock? By God, it’s not normal!

          Scotty: What I meant to say, Captain, was: if you three could finish up this discussion of Erich Fromm, The Art of Loving, and psychobabble, we have a ship to run!

  4. Robin: Comic books?

    Senator McCarthy: Some comic books have been known to stir a spirit of youth alienation and rebellion which can be become part of Communist subversion and the undermining of our American way of life by the International Communist Conspiracy.

    Doctor Strangelove: Don’t forget Hollywood movies which also tap into alienation and rebellion.

    Ron Burgundy: I have never heard that before, but let me just say this on that subject…

    Eddie Haskell: Well, Mrs. Cleaver, Wallace and I thought we would take the girls to the Drive-In to see Some Like It Hot. It’s a comedy in which Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon pretend to be cross-dressers in order to…

    June Cleaver: Eddie! You know I don’t like Wally going to see decadent movies!

  5. From Matins for tomorrow:
    1 Mac 2:7-10
    7 And Mathathias said: Woe is me, wherefore was I born to see the ruin of my people, and the ruin of the holy city, and to dwell there, when it is given into the hands of the enemies?
    8 The holy places are come into the hands of strangers: her temple is become as a man without honour….

    1 Mac 2:14-16
    14 And Mathathias and his sons rent their garments, and they covered themselves with haircloth, and made great lamentation.
    15 And they that were sent from king Antiochus came thither, to compel them that were fled into the city of Modin, to sacrifice, and to burn incense, and to depart from the law of God.
    16 And many of the people of Israel consented, and came to them: but Mathathias and his sons stood firm.

  6. Robin: Gosh, Batman, with a Protestant-style decentralization of the papacy, as advocated by crypto-Lutheran European progressive modernists, modernist bishops would be free to vent their passive-aggressive type anger in covert or masked ways without fear of discipline or fraternal correction.

    Batman: That is a possibility, Robin. We must always be cautious of passive-aggressive modernists venting passive-aggressive anger in covert or masked ways.

    Archbishop Chaput: There is nothing obviously passive-aggressive about pointing out the problems with the two candidates and blurring the moral distinctions between abortion on demand and immigration policies while closing parishes and schools in the diocese.

    Bishop Conley: What’s wrong with being passive-aggressive in blurring distinctions?

    Hans Küng: He may not have committed to full consent of the will in blurring distinctions. But if he was following his own conscience and his own idea of the good, well, who are we to judge who is being passive-aggressive…

  7. Batman: On the other hand, of course, the distortions, dilemmas, and quandaries of progressive modernism from too much Rahner and Teilhard de Chardin might lead some neo-Catholics to Protestant anti-intellectual conclusions and the heresy of fideism, neglecting authentic Catholic contributions to the role of reason in the created order, allowing some to conclude that faith and reason are in conflict, going directly against St. John Paul II in Fides et Ratio.

    Robin: Gosh, Batman, progressive modernism sure is confusing.

    Batman: Indeed, it is, old chum.

    Robin: Is there any way we can prevent that, Batman?

    Batman: You did say that you have more Latin homework from your classes at Fordham Prep. Of course, Latin study prepares the mind for orthodoxy and a sound reception of Catholic doctrine, Robin!

    Robin: Oh, boy…Arma virumque cano, Troiae qui primus ab

  8. Darth Vader: There is one thing I should ask you before we launch our intergalactic imperial dictatorship.

    Captain Kirk: What’s that, Mister Vader?

    Darth Vader: Do you know your Enneagram number?

  9. [More on the hermeneutic of the continuity of rupture; hat-tip to Canon212: “Cardinal Wuerl Lies About the Faith, Synod: Who do these Amoris Laetitia critics think they are? – ‘This was a work of consensus and this was a work that’s deeply rooted in the magisterial tradition of the church.'”]

    Cardinal Wuerl: Amoris Laetitia is ‘consensus document,’ rooted in tradition

    Joshua J. McElwee | Oct. 4, 2016 | National un-Catholic Reporter

    VATICAN CITY Washington Cardinal Donald Wuerl has questioned why some choose to vocally criticize Pope Francis’ recent apostolic exhortation on family life, saying the document reflects the tradition of the Roman Catholic church and the consensus opinion of its highest-ranking prelates.

    Speaking in an NCR interview Thursday, the cardinal said Francis’ Amoris Laetitia (“The Joy of Love”) was the result of a two-year process of consultation and fits appropriately amid the teaching of the church since the 1962-65 Second Vatican Council.

    “If someone has a concern about something they should say specifically what that concern is,” said Wuerl. “However, the starting point for me is we just went through a two-year process and it arrived at a document that is clearly a consensus document and clearly rooted in the tradition of the church.”

    “I find it not all together clear why someone would put their judgment up against the judgment that comes out of all of this magisterial endeavor,” said the cardinal. “This was a work of consensus and this was a work that’s deeply rooted in the magisterial tradition of the church.”

    Referencing 13th-century theologian St. Thomas Aquinas, Wuerl added: “What it’s calling for is something that’s a great part — and those of us that are Thomists recognize St. Thomas in this — a calling for clarity in teaching but pastoral accompaniment with people who are trying to appropriate the teaching.”

    The cardinal was speaking about Francis’ document in response to a question about the criticism it has faced, which in recent months has sometimes taken strident tones. One July critique of the exhortation, signed by theologians and one church prelate, even said it contains “dangers to Catholic faith and morals.”

    Amoris Laetitia was released by Francis in April as a response to the discussions of the two meetings of the Synod of Bishops he held at the Vatican in 2014 and 2015 on issues of family life.

    The document asked the world’s Catholic clergy to let their lives become “wonderfully complicated” by embracing God’s grace at work in the difficult and sometimes unconventional situations families face.

    In Thursday’s half-hour interview, Wuerl also spoke about what Francis is looking for in choosing new bishops around the world and about the pope’s recent creation of two new Vatican offices streamlining the church’s work in several areas.

    Synod shows ‘enormous continuity’ with predecessors

    On the 2014 and 2015 synod process, the cardinal said that Francis is “picking up where the threads of the Council were leading.”

    Tracing the history of the church since the Council, Wuerl said “there was a lot of confusion” following the three-year meeting of the world’s bishops.

    “There was a lot of overreaching, theologically and also liturgically,” he said. “And it took the pontificate of John Paul II to get everything back more or less on track. And now we’re having Francis saying, ‘OK, let’s get back now to the inspiration of the Council.'”

    The cardinal said the pope is saying: “Let’s focus on the role of the laity in the church, let’s focus on how it’s the layperson, well formed in the faith, who’s supposed to be the one who transforms the secular order.”

    Wuerl explained that Pope Paul VI created the process of holding synods in the church at the end of Vatican II to allow the world’s bishops to come to Rome occasionally and “keep alive the collegial experience” they had at the Council.

    He said that John Paul II used synods to reflect on each of the different Vatican II documents.

    “Now Francis is saying, ‘Look, we’ve just had 30 years of synods focusing on the teaching,'” said Wuerl. “‘We know we’re in a good place. Let’s now focus on the transformative element.'”

    “I think that’s why he keeps challenging us to bear witness to the Gospel, not just with the words but with our actions,” said Wuerl, pointing to the positive reaction that Francis receives for “how he lives the Gospel with such simplicity.”

    The cardinal said he sees a clear constancy in teaching between Francis and his predecessors.

    “The emphasis is on living witness rather than on verbal witness,” said Wuerl. “But I just see an enormous continuity between the Council and what Paul VI was attempting to get started and what John Paul II made possible by all the work he did in stabilizing the church in all his teachings to implement the Council.”

    “Now Francis comes along and says, ‘Let’s keep doing this,'” he said.

    Wuerl also said Francis is giving special importance to the role of the synod in the life of the church.

    The cardinal said that in 2014 Francis made cardinals both of Archbishop Lorenzo Baldisseri, the head of the Vatican’s Synod office, and Archbishop Gerhard Müller, the head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

    Baldisseri, Wuerl noted, was given precedence in the College of Cardinals over Müller “as if to say, the Synod of Bishops is a much more significant entity in the church.”

    “It takes precedence over the curia,” said the cardinal, paraphrasing from the Vatican II document Lumen Gentium: “The bishops together with and never without Peter are responsible for the church.”

    “[The] curia exists to carry out the decisions and policies that are arrived at by the bishops, always with and never without Peter,” said Wuerl.

    Using ‘the Jesse principle’

    In regards to bishop appointments, the cardinal said that while he knows that the Council of Cardinals has said they are considering changes to the process by which bishop candidates are proposed to the pope that he was not aware of specific proposals.

    Wuerl, a member of the Congregation for Bishops, referenced a talk Francis gave to that dicastery in 2014.

    “He was saying then that he wasn’t finding fault with the structure, he was asking that it be attentive to the pastoral needs of the church,” he said.

    Wuerl said Francis told the congregation then that he wanted them to be proposing good pastors as bishops, suggesting they use “the Jesse principle” in reference to the Old Testament story of the prophet Samuel asking Jesse if he had shown him all of his sons to be evaluated as a possible successor to Saul.

    Jesse mentions that he had another son, David, working outside.

    “That was the pope’s way of saying: ‘Don’t be too restrictive and don’t be too comfortable,'” said Wuerl.

    The cardinal said that Francis is also emphasizing that the church should be “balancing all the elements” in its choice of leaders.

    “It can’t just be: Does this person have a doctorate or has this person had experience governing?” said Wuerl. “Add into that: Does this person have pastoral experience? Does he demonstrate pastoral skill?”

    Speaking about the two new Vatican dicasteries, the cardinal said Francis is looking for a way to streamline and “better focus” the functioning of the offices of the Roman Curia.

    Francis formally created two new Vatican offices in August, the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, which combines efforts on justice, peace, charity, healthcare and migration; and the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life.

    Wuerl said that after the end of Vatican II there had been a multiplication of pontifical councils working on different issues.

    “They just began to grow,” he said. “And I think long before Pope Francis became pope there was the realization that there should be better collaboration among them.”

    The cardinal also said that the merging of several pontifical councils into two new larger entities may mean that there may be fewer offices in Rome in the future that need to be led by cardinals.

    “The other aspect of that here in Rome is that if everyone of those is headed by a cardinal, you have a large concentration of cardinals in Rome at the very time that the church was trying — this goes all the way back to Paul VI — to name more cardinals, not only outside of Rome and Italy, but outside of Europe,” said Wuerl.

    The cardinal noted that for now the new offices are being called dicasteries, not pontifical councils or congregations.

    “I think that’s really to give some breathing space to what level of authority they’re going to have,” said Wuerl. “Are they going to be congregations that exercise vicarious authority, or are they going to be a form of council that exercise only advocacy roles?”

    “I suspect we’re going to see that both of these will rise to the level of congregations, if not in name in power, in authority, in exercise of jurisdiction,” he said.

    Wuerl also praised Francis’ ongoing reforms of the Vatican, saying: “I get the impression looking at all of this that this is moving along quite well.”

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