Church in Sweden

Bergoglio goes for low-hanging theological fruit, and neo-Catholics largely let him get away with it - Sunday 29th of July to Saturday 4th of August

There is really only one place to start this week and that is with the news that Bergoglio has altered the John Paul II Catechism to read that the death penalty is now  "inadmissible" in all circumstances because it violates "human dignity" . That God Himself in the Bible did not realise this, or the various Church fathers, or Doctors of the Church, or all the popes up until Bergoglio ought to get us suspicious.

I cannot do justice to the arguments against this latest heresy by Bergoglio so I shall simply leave it to you to have a look at the links below, one of which is from OnePeter5 and is titled "Pope Francis Is Wrong about the Death Penalty. Here’s Why." Rorate Caeli ran one under the title "What was black is now white".

The one thing I shall note is that the argument that Bergoglio uses is one that is expressly condemned by the Catechism of Trent. Bergoglio argues that using the death penalty deprives the convict of the chance of conversion. The Catechism of Trent tells us, in rather common-sensical terms, that he who knows that his life will end and is granted the grace of knowing when will scarcely convert at a later time if he cannot do it while at the point of oncoming death. So Bergoglio's argument is not even original, and is one which has been put down before as nonsensical.

It is interesting to note that the only person Bergoglio can quote to rationalise his new posture is himself, continuing his now-growing list of novelties by self-quotation.

As usual, the neo-Catholics were mostly out in force proving that they are part of the problem. To watch EWTN reporting that "the pope has changed the Church's teaching on the death penalty" or the "pope has strengthened the Church's opposition to the death penalty" would have  been to come away with the conclusion that a pope can change the Church's teaching. The Papal Pose was misex, with Fr. Murray arguing that it was a break, and Robert Royal at his usual neo-Catholic best when responding that canonists will have to determine whether it is 'de fide', when asked that by Arroyo. It's striking that these people are there to respond as experts and they do not even know that catechisms are not in and of themselves infallible, not even the venerable Catechism of Trent. They ought, however, to contain infallible truths.

Some of the Novus Ordites argued that it is a case of the pope implanting his prudential judgement and that we should take it seriously, having been offered this opinion. Excuse me, but the Catechism is there to tell us what the Church teaches explicitly, not to argue for selective enforcement of prudential judgements, regardless of where they hail!

This is nothing short of heresy because the Church has taught definitively about this issue from her beginning, and God has made it clear that the death penalty can be justifiably imposed by legitimate authority. To argue otherwise is to do nothing short of lying, and to pass it off to others it to shirk responsibility.

What is clear is that Bergoglio has gone after low-hanging theological fruit. He knows that even among those who argue for the licitness of the death penalty, many are opposed to it in practice. The death penalty is only available in a few countries and even in these it is rarely used. He knows that people will not die on 'death penalty hill', so to speak, protesting "thus far but no farther!" We can, however, be sure that if Bergoglio gets away with this he will not stop there.

The arguments he puts forward for it, namely that people nowadays have a realisation that the death penalty is opposed to human dignity, can be used to rationalise pretty much every heresy and Church teaching which is not popular with the modernists. It is pretty much what he has attempted to do with divorce and remarriage and you can be sure that he is testing waters by formally changing the Catechism on the death penalty. Next up on the line might just be your favourite teaching.

Some have argued that Bergoglio only did this to divert attention from the McCarrick scandal - given that it involves one of his closest aides - while others have argued that even with Bergoglio being an idiot, using heresy as deflection is a move too dumb even for him. I am not sure there is anything so dumb that Bergoglio will not do it, so I'll not dismiss the theory entirely.  I too was initially drawn to the theory that he used it as a distraction from the McCarrick scandal. However, I do pride myself in thinking outside the box, and I have wondered: What if the reverse is true?

What if Bergoglio used the McCarrick scandal to introduce formal heresy into the teaching of the Church? What if the McCarrick scandal was itself the distraction? Most of the Catholic and secular media is pre-occupied with other stuff anyway, and there is no better time to poison  the Church's  already-sub-standard Catechism . If he pulls it back on account of major opposition (yeah, as if Bergoglio listens to anyone!) then it will hardly be headline news. If it sticks, then he can use it as reference for even further heresy, knowing that EWTN and the rest of  the neo-Catholic establishment has his back arguing as dishonestly as ever that we need to try and take onboard something which is obviously a heresy simply because the pope has put his weight behind it.

I have often maintained that neo-Catholics, or 'conservative Catholics', will reject every heresy unless it comes from the pope. This incident proves me right, yet again!

All I can say is that I am in total agreement with Christopher Ferrara that The Reversible Magisterium...

The grinch who stole Holy Week, or more honestly put, the attention whore who tried to upstage it - Sunday 25th to Saturday 31st of March - Holy Week

As we all should be aware, but most are not, the Holy Week reforms of the 1950s were quite sweeping. Berfore Holy Week, Rorate Caeli once again re-posted an article on " The Reform of Holy Week in the Years 1951-1956". It is well-worth reading, especially in connection with the news recently that some traditional orders had been allowed to celebrate the pre-1950s Holy Week on a 3-year experimental basis starting this year.

Traditionalists are nothing if not resourceful and it didn't take long before there was a resource for the pre-1950 Holy Week with English translations, aptly called Pre-1955 Holy Week (although I grant that it may well have been present before the announcement). Rorate Caeli also provided us with a clarification on who exactly may chant the Passion. These two interventions by Rorate Caeli were quite helpful to me personally, as I finally came to realise taht the Passion is not actually the Gospel reading for Good Friday, but that we actually have a Passion reading followed by a Gospel reading, at least in the traditinal liturgy, pre-1950s edition in any case. Rorate Caeli was also kind enough to provide us with pictures of Palm Sunday from the pre-1955 Holy Week celebration.

Anybody who knows anything about Christianity knows that Easter is the biggest event of the Church year (yet it seems that professional journalists writing for major state-sponsored publications don't have a clue about what Easter is all about, to nobody's surprise, and they are probably even proud about it). We shall also know that Holy Week is the most august week of the year. It is for this reason that the secular anti-Catholic world generally steps up its attacks on the Catholic faith and the Catholic Church. It is also the week that the world's most popular attention-whore gets up to his usual attention-seeking antics in order to seemingly steal attention away from the Church's commemorations and celebrations.

This year was no exception, but having noticed that his Maundy Thursday foot fetish doesn't get the attention it used to , Bergoglio decided to get a little help from his now 93-year old atheist friend Euginio Scalfari. Every time he speaks to that an he can be guaranteed a few scandalous headlines and this time was no different. Just in time for the Holy Week Celebrations, in which Christ instituted the Holy Eucharist and died to save us from the fires of hell and allow us too spend eternity with God, Bergoglio told his friend that there is no hell, and that those who die in sin simply vanish, while those who repent before end up spending eternity in the presence of God. This interview was timed to coincide with Maundy Thursday, and naturally overshadowed his feet-washing ceremony, which was once more carried out in prison and against the rubrics of the Novus Ordo, rubrics which he himself amended, it has to be mentioned.

The reactions were not long in coming, and predictably, much of the Catholic press tied itself up in knots, blaming the poor atheist fool Scalfari, instead of pointing to Bergoglio as the culprit. The Vatican issued a non-denial denial, informing us, as we all know, that Scalfari does not record his interviews so it cannot be ascertained whether what was reported was the exact phrasing that Bergoglio used. In other words, they were saying loudly and clearly that Bergoglio is a heretic, as we all know, but we can use the he-doesn't-record-interviews card to get us out of a very serious doctrinal situation. They could really have done little else, for had they said that Bergoglio had actually admitted that he doesn't believe in hell, then they would efffectively have been confirming what we all know, that the man is not Catholic. Had they come out and denied that Bergoglio said that, then they would have had to explain how it is that a man who, as far as I know, hasn't faced many accusations of total misrepresenation in his work before - save for when he speaks to Bergoglio - could get such a fundamental thing so wrong.

Bergoglio himself did not come out and deny it, so we can rest safely in the knowledge that Bergoglio told his atheist friend that. It must be noted that this is not the first time that Bergoglio has denied that souls end up in hell, as Scalfari has reported on this before, and even in Church documents Bergoglio has written something to the tune of everything been on its way to Heaven. His defenders have pointed out that Bergoglio mentions the devil quite a lot, and so he must be misquoted if he has said that the devil does not exist. That is a logical fallacy if ever there was one, as it is entirely possible to believe that the devil exists and yet believe that nobody ends up in hell; that the devil would spend eternity in hell with his demons. In any case it was dishonest of them as they could easily have found multiple instances of Bergoglio telling us that those who die in mortal sin never end up in hell, assuming that anybody can even die in mortal sin, which Bergoglio does not seem to believe - save for traditional Catholics who use doctrine as stones to throw at people while sitting in the judgment seat of Moses. That's his phrasing, not mine, of course.

On the topic of attacking the Church's doctrines, Bergoglio could not resist taking a barb at the notion of truth, insisting that priests ought not to make "idols of certain abstract truths". This was in a separate speech, mind you, proving beyond doubt, if anyone is still not convinced, that the man is in constant heresy mode, and not just when speaking to his atheist anti-Catholic friends who, if you are to believe his enablers, have nothing better to do than...

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