FrankenPope: I avoid reading heresy-accusation websites “for the sake of my mental health”

 FrankenPope: I avoid reading heresy-accusation websites “for the sake of my mental health”
 

ROME, February 16, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) — Pope Francis has acknowledged accusations of heresy and what he calls “doctrinal resistance” within the Church,  but has said he chooses to ignore it to protect his mental health.

“There is doctrinal resistance,” the Pope told a group of his fellow Jesuits at a meeting on Jan. 16, but “for the sake of mental health I do not read .’”

“I know who they are, I am familiar with the groups, but I do not read them, simply for my mental health. If there is something very serious, they inform me so that I know about it,” he said.

Pope Francis’ comments came in a private meeting with 90 Jesuits in Santiago de Chile, during his recent apostolic visit to South America. Their conversation was transcribed by Fr. Antonio Spadaro, editor of La Civilta Cattolicà, and was published in Italian with the Pope’s approval on their online site on Thursday morning.

During the question and answer exchange in Chile, a Jesuit from the Argentine-Uruguayan province asked the Holy Father what “resistance” he has encountered during this pontificate, and how he is handling it.

In response, the Pope said it is important to consider if there is a “grain of truth” in the push-back he receives, and that sometimes what at first glance seems to be “resistance” is actually “a reaction arising from a misunderstanding, from the fact that there are some things one needs to repeat and explain better.”

“But when I realize that there is real resistance, of course it displeases me,” he said. “Some people tell me that resistance is normal when someone wants to make changes. The famous ‘we’ve always done it this way’ reigns everywhere, it is a great temptation that we have all faced,” he added.

“I cannot deny that there is resistance. I see it and I am aware of it,” he told his fellow Jesuits.

Pope Francis continued: “There is doctrinal resistance, which you all know better than I do. For the sake of mental health I do not read the websites of this so-called “resistance.”

“I know who they are, I am familiar with the groups, but I do not read them, simply for my mental health. If there is something very serious, they inform me so that I know about it. You all know them … It is a displeasure, but we must move ahead. Historians say that it takes a century before a Council puts down roots. We are halfway there,” he said.

The Pope added: “When I perceive resistance, I try to dialogue, when dialogue is possible.”

“But some resistance comes from people who believe they possess the true doctrine and accuse you of being a heretic,” he said. “When I do not find spiritual goodness in these people, because of what they say or write, I simply pray for them. It pains me, but I do not dwell on this feeling for the sake of mental hygiene.”

Heresy charges  

Last September, a group of 62 clergy and lay scholars took the rare step of presenting Pope Francis with a “Filial Correction,” charging him with permitting the spread of seven heresies, at least by omission, about marriage, the moral life, and the reception of the sacraments.

The filial correction, in the form of a 25-page letter, was delivered to the Pope at his Santa Marta residence on August 11, 2017. No similar action has taken place within the Catholic Church since the Middle Ages, when Pope John XXII was admonished for errors which he later recanted on his deathbed.

Expressing “profound grief” and “filial devotion,” the group of clergy and lay scholars “respectfully insist[ed]” that Pope Francis condemn the heresies that, in their view, he has directly or indirectly upheld, and that he teach the truth of the Catholic faith in its integrity.

The initiative provoked admiration and consternation among Catholics and drew considerable attention in secular media outlets — including the AP, BBC, CNN, Fox News, Drudge Report, Huffington Post, and Daily Mail.

The number of signatories quickly grew to 250 scholars, some from prominent institutions around the world. Pope Francis has issued no response.

Dubia or “doctrinal opposition”?

One year earlier, on Sept. 19, 2016, American Cardinal Raymond Burke, along with Cardinal Walter Brandmüller and recently deceased Cardinals Joachim Meisner and Carlo Caffarra, sent five questions, called dubia (Latin for “doubts”) to Pope Francis and Cardinal Gerhard Müller, then prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

The cardinals said the aim of the dubia was to clarify “contrasting interpretations” of Paragraphs 300-305 in Chapter 8 of Amoris Laetitia, which are its most controversial passages relating to admission of remarried divorcees to the sacraments, the indissolubility of marriage, and the proper role of conscience.

They made the initiative public on Nov. 14, 2016, when it became clear the Holy Father would not respond. Many defenders of Pope Francis interpreted the dubia as a kind of opposition to him.

One of the four, American Cardinal Raymond Burke, said in an interview following their public release that the Church is “suffering from a tremendous confusion on at least these five points,” that have to do with “irreformable moral principles.”

As cardinals, we “judged it our responsibility to request a clarification with regard to these questions, in order to put an end to this spread of confusion that is actually leading people into error,” he said.

Burke also stated that the four cardinals wrote the letter “with the greatest sense of our responsibility as bishops and cardinals,” but also “with the greatest respect for the Petrine Office, because if the Petrine Office does not uphold these fundamental principles of doctrine and discipline, then, practically speaking, division has entered into the Church, which is contrary to our very nature.”

Less than three months before his death, Italian Cardinal Carlo Caffarra, the founding president of the Pope John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and the Family, wrote a second letter to the Holy Father on behalf of the four cardinals, requesting a private audience to discuss their deep concerns over the publication of Amoris Laetitia. Pope Francis did not respond to the request.

Here below we offer our readers a LifeSite translation of the key exchange containing the Pope’s comments during his Jan. 16 conversation with his fellow Jesuits.

***

A Jesuit of the Argentine-Uruguayan province asked: What resistance have you encountered during your pontificate, and how have you handled it? Have you discerned?

When faced with difficulty, I never call it “resistance,” because that would mean giving up discerning, which is what I want to do instead. It’s easy to say that there is resistance and not realize that in the push-back there can also be a grain of truth. And so I let myself be helped by the push-back. Often I will ask someone: “What do you think of this?” This also helps me to put many things into perspective which at first sight seem to be resistance, but in reality are a reaction arising from a misunderstanding, from the fact that there are some things one needs to repeat and explain better… It may be a defect of mine that sometimes I consider some things obvious, or I make a logical leap without explaining the process well, because I am convinced that the other person has immediately grasped my reasoning. I realize that, if I go back and explain it better, at that point the other person says, “Oh, yes, I agree ….” In short, it is very helpful to examine thoroughly the meaning of the push-back.

When, instead, I realize that there is real resistance, of course it displeases me. Some people tell me that resistance is normal when someone wants to make changes. The famous “we’ve always done it this way” reigns everywhere, it is a great temptation that we have all faced. For example, we all lived through post-Vatican II. The opposition after Vatican II, which is still present, has this aim: to relativize, to water down the Council. I am even sorrier when someone enlists in a resistance campaign. And unfortunately I see this too. You asked me about resistance, and so I cannot deny that there is resistance. I see it and I am aware of it.

There is doctrinal resistance, which you all know better than I do. For for the sake of mental health I do not read the websites of this so-called “resistance.” I know who they are, I am familiar with the groups, but I do not read them, simply for my mental health. If there is something very serious, they inform me so that I know about it. You are all aware of them … It is a displeasure, but we must move ahead. Historians say that it takes a century before a Council puts down roots. We are halfway there.

Sometimes we ask ourselves: but has that man, that woman, read the Council? And there are people who haven’t read the Council. And if they have read it, they haven’t understood it. After 50 years! We studied philosophy before the Council, but we had the advantage of studying theology after it. We experienced the change in perspective, and there were already the Council documents.

When I perceive resistance, I try to dialogue, when dialogue is possible. But some opposition comes from people who believe they possess the true doctrine and accuse you of being a heretic. When I do not find spiritual goodness in these people, because of what they say or write, I simply pray for them. It pains me, but I do not dwell on this feeling for the sake of mental hygiene.

 

Another Jesuit asked Pope Francis: Holy Father, you have been a man of reform. In what reforms, besides that of the Curia and the Church, can we as Jesuits best support you?

I believe that one of the things the Church needs most today, and this is very clear in the perspectives and pastoral objectives of Amoris Laetitia, is discernment. We are accustomed to “you can or you can’t.” The moral [approach] used in Amoris Laetitia is the most classic Thomistic moral teaching, that of St. Thomas, not of the decadent Thomism like the one some have studied. In my formation, I also received a way of thinking that was “up to this point you can, up to this point you cannot.” I don’t know if you remember [here the Pope looks at one of those present] the Colombian Jesuit who came to teach us moral at the Collegio Massimo. When it came to speaking about the sixth commandment, someone dared to ask the question: “Can engaged couples kiss?” If they could kiss! Do you all understand? And he said, “Yes, they can! There’s no problem! They just need to  put a handkerchief between them.” This is a forma mentis of doing theology in general. A forma mentis based on limits. And we are bearing the consequences.

If you have a look at the panorama of the reactions aroused by Amoris Laetitia, you will see that the strongest criticisms made against the Exhortation are on the eighth chapter: can someone who is divorced [and remarried] receive Communion or not?” And yet Amoris Laetitiagoes in a completely different direction. It does not enter into these distinctions and poses the problem of discernment, which was already at the foundation of classical, great, true Thomist moral theology. And so the contribution I would like from the Society is to help the Church grow in discernment. Today the Church needs to grow in discernment. And the Lord has given us as a family this grace to discern. I do not know if you are aware of it, but it is something that I have already said at other meetings like this with Jesuits: at the end of the generalate of Fr. Ledóchowski, the climax of the Society’s spirituality was the Epitome. In it, what you had to do was all regulated, in a huge mix between the Formula of the Institute, the Constitutions and the rules. There were even the rules for the cook. And it was all mixed, without hierarchy. Fr. Ledóchowski was a close friend of the Abbot General of the Benedictines, and once when he went to visit him, he brought him the writing. A short time later, the abbot looked for him and said: “Father General, you have killed the Society of Jesus with this.” And he was right, because the Epitome removed any capacity for discernment.

Then came the war. Fr. Janssens had to lead the Company in the post-war period, and he did it well, as best he could, because it was not easy. And then came the grace of the generalate of Fr. Arrupe. Pedro Arrupe with the Ignatian Spirituality Center, the magazine Christus and the impulse given to the Spiritual Exercises renewed this family grace which is discernment. He went beyond the Epitome, he returned to the lesson of his fathers, to Favre, to Ignatius. In this, the role of the Christus magazine at that time must be acknowledged. And then also the role of Fr. Luis González with his Spirituality Center: he went around for the whole Society to give Spiritual Exercises. They were opening their doors, reviving this aspect that today we see has grown considerably in the Company. I would tell you, remembering this family story, that there was a time when we had lost — or I do not know if we had lost it, let us say that we did not use very much — the sense of discernment. Today, give it — let us give it! —  to the Church, which needs it so much.

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One comment on “FrankenPope: I avoid reading heresy-accusation websites “for the sake of my mental health”

  1. Bergoglio: A chip off the “Old Scratch”
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    Louie – February 16, 2018
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    Andrea Tornielli at Vatican Insider has provided excerpts of a private address given by Francis to a gathering of Jesuits while in Chile last month.
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    The money quote is in the headline:
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    “I don’t read websites that accuse me of heresy”
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    And here I thought he was an avid akaCatholic reader! Oh, well.
    /
    Before we get to the meat of the article, get this from Francis:
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    This pontificate is a rather quiet period. From the moment I realized what was going to happen in the Conclave – an instant surprise for me – I felt a great peace.
    /
    Someone is lying; more likely, lots of someones.
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    Readers may recall that Francis’ biographer, Austen Ivereigh, wrote of those lobbying for Bergoglio’s election (e.g., St. Gallen’s mafia) in 2013:
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    They first secured Bergoglio’s assent. Asked if he was willing, he said that he believed that at this time of crisis for the Church no cardinal could refuse if asked. Murphy-O’Connor knowingly warned him to ‘be careful,’ and that it was his turn now, and was told ‘capisco’ – ‘I understand.’
    /
    After this revelation led to charges that the election may be invalid, Ivereigh recanted and stressed that Bergoglio had not been asked if he was willing.
    /
    Maybe I’m just cynical, but this “instant surprise” claim coming from the same man who was recently exposed as having, shall we say, been less than truthful concerning his awareness of sex abuse claims made against Bishop Juan Barros, sounds an awful lot like protesting too much.
    /
    Add to this the widely circulated and broadly accepted report (also endorsed by Ivereigh) that Bergoglio was the runner-up in the 2005 election of Cardinal Ratzinger, and one is hard pressed to believe that he experienced an unpopular ugly girl made homecoming queen moment in conclave 2013.
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    In any case, the lying has just begun.
    /
    Later in the address, Francis told this whopper:
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    There are doctrinal resistances … When I perceive resistance, I try to talk, when dialogue is possible; but some resistance comes from people who believe they have the true doctrine and accuse you of being heretical.
    /
    This is the same guy who thus far has refused to grant an audience to the authors of the Dubia that he refuses to answer. Some dialogue, that.
    /
    Think about it: Only the truly disinterested are unaware of the fact that Francis does not try to talk with those who resist his agenda; he does the exact opposite. This isn’t a secret.
    /
    And yet, here he is insisting upon what everyone paying attention knows is false.
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    What we have here, folks, is not just your ordinary, garden variety obfuscator, but quite possibly a pathological liar – one who suffers with a psychiatric malady that causes one to lie even when the truth is widely known.
    /
    In any case, note the criteria used by Francis for determining when “dialogue is possible.”
    /
    According to his own admission, it simply is not possible with those “who believe they have the true doctrine.” In other words, faithful Catholics, who believe what the Church has always taught, and understand that it is immutable, need not apply!
    /
    I would submit to you (as I have in the past) that Francis doesn’t so much suffer a psychiatric illness as a spiritual disease; one wherein the presence of demonic influence is becoming more and more difficult to deny.
    /
    Francis continued, speaking of mental health:
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    When I find no spiritual goodness in these people, for what they say or write, I simply pray for them. I feel sorry, but I will not dwell on this feeling for my mental health.
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    NOTE: “These people” refers to those who “believe they have the true doctrine;” it is in these persons that Bergoglio finds “no spiritual goodness!”
    /
    Let’s be clear, he’s not discussing anonymous bogeymen, but rather real people like Cardinals Raymond Burke and Brandmuller, Bishop Athanasius Schneider and others, who although men of the Council and part of the problem, can hardly be dismissed as having “no spiritual goodness” – that is, not unless one has a diabolical hatred for the Catholic faith and those who wish to embrace it.
    /
    The lying continued, as Francis went on to say:
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    Before a difficulty I never call it a “resistance”, because it would mean giving up discerning, which is what I want to do instead.
    /
    Does he really think that we have forgotten the way he ran roughshod over the opposition at the sham Synods; simply because they stood for Catholic doctrine?
    /
    Recall the letter signed by thirteen cardinals and sent to Francis during Synod 2015 pointing out what is now obvious to everyone:
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    A number of [Synod] fathers feel the new process seems designed to facilitate predetermined results on important disputed questions.
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    His reaction to that letter?
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    To warn the entire Synod on the following day “not to give in to the conspiracy hermeneutic, which is sociologically weak and spiritually unhelpful.”
    /
    Amid all of the lying, Francis did manage to tell a few truths:
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    The famous “it has always been so” reigns everywhere, it is a great temptation that we all experienced. The resistances after Vatican II, still present today, have this meaning: to relativize, to water down the Council.
    /
    Commenting on the Church’s needs moving forward, Francis returned to this theme:
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    Take back the Second Vatican Council, the Lumen Gentium. While speaking to the Chilean bishops, I exhorted them to “declericalize.” Evangelization is made by the Church as the people of God. The Lord is asking us to be a “Church which goes forth” a camp hospital… A poor Church for the poor! The poor are not a theoretical formula of the Communist Party, they are the center of the Gospel!
    /
    In this there is nothing new, but rather confirmation of what has been said many times on these pages, Francis is a problem; an unprecedented problem, but he isn’t the problem, the roots to which run directly back to the Second Vatican Council, and from there, to the Devil himself.
    /
    And why, in sum, is the Council such a font of evil?
    /
    Francis couldn’t have made it plainer:
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    It removed Jesus Christ from the center of the Gospel, and in His place it elevated man. In this, one might rightly discern the Evil One bragging.
    /
    Francis went on:
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    It is on this line that I feel the Spirit is taking us. There are strong resistances, but for me the fact that they are born is a sign that we are going down the right road. Otherwise, the Devil would not rush to resist”.
    /
    See what he did there? He is calling those who hold fast to the true doctrine of the Church the “Devil,” and giving credit to the Holy Ghost for abandoning the same.
    /
    This has the Devil’s handwriting all over it, and note very well that it comes straight from the playbook of Bergoglio’s “bright light,” the soon to be “canonized” Paul VI.
    /
    Many people who should know better get this wrong:
    /
    When Montini decried the “smoke of Satan,” he wasn’t making a tacit admission that the Council itself is problematic; rather, he (just like his protege Bergoglio) was denouncing those who were resisting the Council as tools of Satan as he went on to say:
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    We believe in something preternatural coming into the world [the Devil] precisely to disturb, to suffocate anything of the Ecumenical Council, and to prevent the Church from blossoming in the joy of having regained full consciousness of Herself.
    /
    In total, this latest truckload of Bergoglian garbage amounts to nothing more than evidence heaped upon evidence attesting to fact that the man presently posing as pope is a magnificent deceiver who loathes the Catholic faith.
    /
    Blessed Lent, everyone.

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