After Recent Comments on Hell, Report Emerges of Curial Backlash Against the Pope

After Recent Comments on Hell, Report Emerges of Curial Backlash Against the Pope

 

Italian Journalist and author Antonio Socci has made waves this week with a piece of commentary, posted on his website on Easter Sunday, alleging that Pope Francis’s most recent conversation with La Repubblica publisher Eugenio Scalfari on the supposed non-existence of Hell has made bigger ripples throughout the Vatican than can be seen on the surface.

According to Socci, the Vaticanist website Il Sismografo — which sources in Rome confirm is widely read within Vatican circles — lamented on Holy Saturday that despite the so-called “denial” from the Vatican (which wasn’t actually a denial at all) that the pope said what Scalfari reported — namely, that Hell does not exist and that the souls of the unrighteous are annihilated — “already now for 48 hours it has caused an avalanche on the web, in every language.”

Socci says that the effects were felt mostly abroad, with very little pickup in the Italian press — so little, in fact, that La Repubblica hasn’t even mentioned the Vatican’s “denial” of the report made by its founder.

“It’s strange,” writes Socci, “in fact, this story made the specter of impeachment for heresy hover (and perhaps it still is hovering) over Bergoglio, which could cost him the papacy.”

Socci argues that

There are only two possibilities: either Bergoglio did make the explosive heretical affirmations which “The Times” carried with the headline “Pope Francis Abolishes Hell”, or else Scalfari made it all up and thus committed an unheard of professional gaffe which undermines the credibility of “Repubblica”, a very “loud” mistake to make at a time when every day they are decrying “fake news.”

Socci argues that “every published interview is a reconstruction,” and that this excuse is not enough to dismiss concerns over what the pope is alleged to have said. “The Vatican,” he says, “should tell us if Bergoglio disavows and rejects the statement that was attributed to him or not”. But Socci has a theory as to why they haven’t, and it matches what we’ve been saying here for some time:

There is thus a game being played by Scalfari and Bergoglio for over five years now, in which the Argentine pope consents to a sort of double Magisterial track. When he speaks to Catholics he expresses himself in a certain vague and theologically ambiguous way. He avoids explicit statements and thus little by little demolishes doctrine (the tactic of boiling frogs slowly).

Meanwhile, he speaks through Scalfari to the secular world, making known his true ideas, which are so totally modern, in order to build up his “revolution” and to have popularity among non-Catholics and the media. [emphasis in original]

Socci informs his readers that Cardinal Martini — the former leader of the St. Gallen Mafia which conspired to elect Bergoglio and “one of the great precursors of this pontificate” — wrote of a very similar eschatological view not long before his death:

I nourish the hope that sooner or later everyone will be redeemed. I am a great optimist…. My hope is that God welcomes everyone, that He is merciful, and becomes ever stronger. On the other hand, naturally, I cannot imagine how people like Hitler or an assassin who abused children can be close to God. It seems easier for me to think that these sort of people are simply annihilated…

Those who promote these progressive theological ideas, argues Socci, want to be “more merciful than God and than Jesus Himself, who in the Gospel describes with terrible words the punishments of Hell. This is the meaning of Bergoglian mercy: to improve the mercy of Jesus.”

But Scalfari, Socci reminds us, has attributed similar statements to Francis several times over the last few years — a fact I documented in my own commentary on the matter last week. “The Vatican has never denied it.” Socci says. “It drew no reaction from the confused and annihilated Church. And so this time somebody thought that the moment had arrived to put these Bergoglian concepts inside quotation marks.”

This is a noteworthy development on its own — one I had not picked up on until seeing Socci’s analysis. The idea of the pope’s words being placed within quotation marks, rather than simply recounted and obviously paraphrased. Curious, I went looking. In October of 2017, in a review of a book by Archbishop Lorenzo Paglia, Scalfari makes a claim about what Pope Francis believes about Hell, but there are no quotes, just a simple assertion:

Pope Francis – I repeat – has abolished the places of eternal residence in the afterlife of souls. The thesis he advocates is that souls dominated by evil and not repentant cease to exist while those who have redeemed themselves from evil will be assumed in bliss while contemplating God.

And in 2015, the first time Scalfari published his conversations with Francis on the topic, we see a similar presentation:

What happens to that lost soul? Will it be punished? And how? The response of Francis is distinct and clear: there is no punishment, but the annihilation of that soul.  All the others will participate in the beatitude of living in the presence of the Father. The souls that are annihilated will not take part in that banquet; with the death of the body their journey is finished.

There are no quotation marks in either previous example. But this time, Scalfari has framed the entire conversation with them, lending a deeper assertion of specificity and accuracy to the representation of his words.

Still, Socci says, the Vatican ignored the escalating news coverage of the statement for hours when it came out on Holy Thursday, until finally, in the afternoon, a statement — the now-infamous non-denial — was issued. “Why?” Socci asks, “What happened?”

And this is where Socci claims an unexpected intervention took place:

It appears that this time – in the face of a direct quotation from Bergoglio stating two explicit heresies, contradicting two fundamental dogmas of the Church – an important cardinal (non-Italian) was outraged, called several of his colleagues and then, also in their name, directly sought to find out from the pope exactly what this interview could mean – because professing  explicit heresy is one of the four reasons the Petrine ministry can be lost.

Bergoglio then consulted with the Sostituto [of the Secretariat of State] Msgr. Becciu and decided to quickly run for cover through his spokesman, while Scalfari, who is in on the game to this very moment, was given a heads-up. [emphasis added]

If true, this is a significant moment for the papacy of Francis. If a cardinal was, in fact, able to force the so-called “Dictator Pope” to back down, it indicates that the balance of power in Rome is shifting, and Francis, who is often seen as autocratic and difficult to rein in, may now find himself in a much more precarious position than we’ve previously seen.

Keep reading for our translation of Antonio Socci’s full commentary below.


 

An Uprising of the Cardinals Has Stopped (For Now) The Bergoglian Heresy on Hell. The Staged Denial and the Risk of Impeachment.

by Antonio Socci

April 1, 2018

[All Emphasis in Original]

The falling plaster which fell from the ceiling of St. Peter’s Basilica on Good Friday seems like a symbol of the disastrous Easter 2018 of Pope Bergoglio and his declining pontificate. After months of incidents and slip-ups, now we have the eruption of a new thriller — the interview with Scalfari on hell.

It was supposed to be a high-profile attempt to recover the consensus that Francis is a “revolutionary pope” (he loves to define himself this way), but instead it became a serious misstep. He understood this on Thursday morning when he received a certain very difficult phone call (as we shall see below) and ran for cover.

The Ignored Denial 

But on Saturday the Vaticanist website “Il Sismografo” lamented that despite the “denial” of the “alleged sentence attributed to the Pope — something like ‘Hell does not exist’— already now for 48 hours it has caused an avalanche on the web, in every language.”

In fact it made a big splash abroad, but not in the Italian press. And above all — two days after the Vatican “denial” — “Repubblica” has not even mentioned it, as if it was non-existent. Why? Was it not unusual behavior? And why did Italian news outlets keep silent? So as not to step on the feet of the Vatican and “Repubblica”? It’s strange. In fact, this story made the specter of impeachment for heresy hover (and perhaps it still is hovering) over Bergoglio, which could cost him the papacy. Just as there is also hovering a sort of public moral-professional delegitimization over the “lay pope” of the Italian press, Bergoglio’s friend and confidant Eugenio Scalfari. Who is really telling the truth?

Either One or the Other

There are only two possibilities: either Bergoglio did make the explosive heretical affirmations which “The Times” carried with the headline “Pope Francis Abolishes Hell”, or else Scalfari made it all up and thus committed an unheard of professional gaffe which undermines the credibility of “Repubblica”, a very “loud” mistake to make at a time when every day they are decrying “fake news.”

If it’s true that Bergoglio said this, we are looking at the most colossal error in the 2000 year history of the papacy. If it’s not true that he said this, the supposed scoop of “Repubblica” would be the fake news of the century.

One or the other is true. Tertium non datur. There was only one possible third explanation that could have patched the hole at best, but in the Vatican they did not choose to make it. In fact — assuming that Scalfari did not render a sound account of their discussion about Hell — the matter could be finished if the press office had admitted that the two spoke about eschatological themes but that Scalfari completely misunderstood what the Pope said.

It would have been enough if the Pope, through his spokesman, restated his firm and convinced refutation of the heretical statements and his clear and explicit adherence to the Creed of the Church, adding that there was a colossal misunderstanding. 

That would have made Scalfari very wrong and appear totally incompetent, but it would have closed the case. But that is not what the Vatican “denial” said.

They Are Telling Us The Truth

In fact the Vatican did not deny that the two spoke on this topic, and they did not say that Scalfari misunderstood, but only affirmed that Scalfari’s text was “the fruit of his reconstruction” in which “the actual words [of the Pope] were not recorded.”

But what were the actual words? Why won’t they reveal them?

Every published interview is a reconstruction. The Vatican should tell us if Bergoglio disavows and rejects the statement that was attributed to him or not (that unrepentant souls “are not punished…there is no hell, only the disappearance of sinful souls”). Why hasn’t it done that? Authentic Catholic intellectuals in America have also asked the same thing: Why hasn’t the Vatican denied the substance of what was said?

The little story of the way Scalfari does his interviews informally without notes is old: it was already put in place by the preceding papal spokesman, Fr. Lombardi, after the first two interview-chats between Scalfari and Bergoglio.

All of the Vatican efforts to distance the pope from what Scalfari wrote were dissolved by the decision of the pope to republish those interviews in a book and thus endorse them.  Furthermore, on Thursday Scalfari said that he met Bergoglio for the umpteenth time “by his own invitation.”

“The Times” Believes Scalfari

Why did Bergoglio invite him to speak if he knew there was the risk that Scalfari would make one of his “explosive” non-authorized retellings of their conversation, attributing huge ideas to the pope which he doesn’t really think? Do they want to make us believe that once again, for the umpteenth time, Francis fell for it without wanting it to happen?

There is much that is doubtful. Such as, it is doubtful that “Repubblica” prints any of these interviews without some form of approval by the interested party.

“The Times” talked to an expert who said that on these interviews he “tends to believe Scalfari more than the Vatican,” because if you know that someone distorts your words, “you don’t continue to invite him.”

There is thus a game being played by Scalfari and Bergoglio for over five years now, in which the Argentine pope consents to a sort of double Magisterial track. When he speaks to Catholics he expresses himself a certain vague and theologically ambiguous way. He avoids explicit statements and thus little by little demolishes doctrine (the tactic of boiling frogs slowly).

Meanwhile, he speaks through Scalfari to the secular world, making known his true ideas, which are so totally modern, in order to build up his “revolution” and to have popularity among non-Catholics and the media.

It is no accident that “The Times” article, published on Friday on the front page, accredited Bergoglio’s words as substantially authentic and praised the pope, because with this “suggestion” on the non-existence of Hell he would be seeking “to reconcile the eternal truths with the customs and mentality of modern times.”

Already Stated By Cardinal Martini

As a matter of fact this idea about Hell has been a well known part of progressive theology. Cardinal Martini —who is considered one of the great precursors of this pontificate — in his final months wrote something of the sort in his book/testament:

“I nourish the hope that sooner or later everyone will be redeemed. I am a great optimist…. My hope is that God welcomes everyone, that He is merciful, and becomes ever stronger. On the other hand, naturally, I cannot imagine how people like Hitler or an assassin who abused children can be close to God. It seems easier for me to think that these sort of people are simply annihilated…”

With these ideas, progressive theology wants to be more merciful than God and than Jesus Himself, who in the Gospel describes with terrible words the punishments of Hell. This is the meaning of Bergoglian mercy: to improve the mercy of Jesus.

On Hell, he had allowed Scalfari to scout it out before him. Three times in “Repubblica” in the last few years, Scalfari has already attributed this statement to Bergoglio, without giving a direct quote. The Vatican has never denied it. It drew no reaction from the confused and annihilated Church. And so this time somebody thought that the moment had arrived to put these Bergoglian concepts inside quotation marks. When the interview was published on Thursday morning, there was no denial from the Vatican. Until at 3:00 pm, after several hours of delay, a statement was issued. Why? What happened?

The Revolt

It appears that this time – in the face of a direct quotation from Bergoglio stating two explicit heresies, contradicting two fundamental dogmas of the Church – an important cardinal (non-Italian) was outraged, called several of his colleagues and then, also in their name, directly sought to find out from the pope exactly what this interview could mean – because professing  explicit heresy is one of the four reasons the Petrine ministry can be lost.

Bergoglio then consulted with the Sostituto [of the Secretariat of State] Msgr. Becciu and decided to quickly run for cover through his spokesman, while Scalfari, who is in on the game to this very moment, was given a heads-up.

This explains why “Repubblica” made no mention of the “denial” and did not respond to it. But where is this whole thing going to end?

Antonio Socci

From “Libero” – 1 April 2018

Translated by Giuseppe Pellegrino

www.antoniosocci.com/una-sollevazione-di-cardinali-ha-fermato-per-ora-leresia-bergogliana-sullinferno-la-smentita-farlocca-e-il-rischio-impeachment/#more-6919

Facebook
Twitter
Google+
http://angelqueen.org/2018/04/04/after-recent-comments-on-hell-report-emerges-of-curial-backlash-against-the-pope/
Get AQ Email Updates
AQ RSS Feed

5 comments on “After Recent Comments on Hell, Report Emerges of Curial Backlash Against the Pope

  1. So now the only 2 questions are: Who is the non-Italian cardinal? And how much longer does he get to keep his job?- in the interest of Mercy’s sake.
    I am sure its not the useless Cardinal Burke. My guess its Cardinal Sarah from Nigeria.



  2. Bill Gannon: Hey, Joe, what’s with the Pope saying in an interview that Hell doesn’t exist?



    Sgt. Joe Friday: Sure. He’s never been married. But when Scalfari asked him about people believing in the Easter Bunny, he said “Who am I to judge?”.



    Hawkeye: I guess he’s in trouble with some of the cardinals now.



    Father Mulcahy, S.J.: Well, a friend of mine at the Gregorian said that since it was said in a private conversation with a journalist that the Holy Father was not speaking ex cathedra.



    Hawkeye: I thought the Pope was required to believe that Hell exists. Isn’t it some kind of rule or something like that?



    Father Mulcahy, S.J.: Well, we don’t know which neo-Kantian version of the modernist Transcendental Turn the Holy Father might be following. Since Scalfari doesn’t offer exact quotations, it might be possible that there was a hypothetical conditional clause in which either the annihilationist heresy or universalism was proposed theoretically as personal speculation. Since we don’t know whether the heretical proposition was proposed in the protasis or the apodosis, as can happen in a conditional, hypothetical statement, the precise context is still up in the air, as it were.





    Hawkeye: Like he was quoting Hans Urs von Balthasar on universalism?



    Captain Kirk: Can he do that, Mister Spock?



    Spock: He is a Jesuit, Captain. A theoretical discussion of what happens after death in a private conversation, as pure speculation, could be construed as the Holy Father not speaking ex cathedra.



    Robin: Can he do that, Batman?

    Batman: Technically.



    Immanuel Kant: Conditional sentences are sentences expressing factual implications, or hypothetical situations and their consequences. They are so called because the validity of the main clause of the sentence is conditional on the existence of certain circumstances, which may be expressed in a dependent clause or may be understood from the context.

    A full conditional sentence (one which expresses the condition as well as its consequences) therefore contains two clauses: the dependent clause expressing the condition, called the protasis; and the main clause expressing the consequence, called the apodosis.[1] An example of such a sentence (in English) is the following:

    “If it rains, the picnic will be cancelled.”

    Here the condition is expressed by the clause “If it rains”, this being the protasis, while the consequence is expressed by “the picnic will be cancelled”, this being the apodosis.



    The Professor: It could also depend on which neo-Kantian category governs the conditional clause, Gilligan…



    Immanuel Kant: That’s generally correct. Although we should also consider the a priori conditions of the epistemological foundations of the Rahnerian Christology or Teilhardism which may be influencing the Holy Father in his modernist misstatements of Catholic doctrine.



    The Professor: Exactly. I was going to get to that part, Gilligan.



    Ginger: Gilligan’s getting ready to take the Transcendental Turn.



    Mary Ann: I just hope he can remember the directions to Louvain.



    Hegel: Take a sharp left turn at the Gregorian.





    Father Mulcahy, S.J.: Of course, a friend of mine at Fordham is writing on this precise question of Hans Urs von Balthasar and the universalism debate, as a theological discourse contrasting the hermeneutics of suspicion and the hermeneutics of hope. It used to come up quite frequently at Weston.



    Hawkeye: You’re teasing us, aren’t you, Father?



    Father Mulcahy, S.J.: Only to a point. The hermeneutics of suspicion comes up quite a bit in discussions of Vatican II and the hermeneutics of discontinuity. On the other hand,
    if the Holy Father really believes what Scalfari claimed he said, then he’s a heretic.







    Father Mulcahy, S.J.: Have you ever thought about the existence of Heaven and Hell, Doctor McIntyre?



    Kierkegaard: I am feeling some Angst.



    Captain Kirk: Are you feeling any anxiety or uneasiness, Mister Spock?



    Reverend Neuhaus: That’s my opening….Forgive me for interrupting again as aggressive and pushy professional Protestant converts sometimes do, but speaking as a semi-recovering former Lutheran familiar with the pitfalls of eliminating reason and logic from discussions of religion, this might be a good time to discuss the Naked Public Square in modernity, Max Weber’s concept of disenchantment in modern culture, and Professor Taylor’s secularization theories….



  3. I heard Neuhas’ successor on the radio. It seemed he was trying to sound just like Neuhaus. It sounded typically elitist, neo con and put on.

Leave a Reply