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As a young priest Benedict XVI ‘called for the Church to investigate priestly celibacy’

In 1970 Fr Joseph Ratzinger signed a petition that suggested the Church re-examine the obligation of priestly celibacy, according to a German newspapaer

By on Friday, 28 January 2011

As a young priest, Pope Benedict put his name to a document calling for the Church to seriously investigate the obligation to priestly celibacy.

Joseph Ratzinger was one of the signatories of a 1970 document calling for an examination of priestly celibacy which was signed by nine theologians.

The memorandum was drawn up in the face of a shortage of priests and other signatories included Karl Rahner and the future cardinals Karl Lehmann and Walter Kasper.

The German newspaper Die Sueddeutsche reported about the document today.

The memorandum, which was sent to the German bishops reads: “Our considerations regard the necessity of a serious investigation and a differentiated inspection of the law of celibacy of the Latin Church for Germany and the whole of the universal Church.”

According to the Sueddeutsche, the document said if there were no such investigation, the bishops’ conference would “awaken the impression that it did not believe in the strength of the Gospel recommendation of a celibate life for the sake of heaven, but rather only in the power of a formal authority”.

If there weren’t enough priests, the document said, then the “Church quite simply has a responsibility to take up certain modifications”.

The signatories who had drawn up the document acted as consultors to the German bishops’ conference in a commission for questions of Faith and Morals.

The document’s release coincides with a renewed debate on priestly celibacy after prominent German politicians called for the Church to change the teaching on priestly celibacy in the face of a serious lack of priests.

  • Anonymous

    “…Hello? Inquisitions? Anti-Popes? Heretic burning? Has any of it sunk in yet?”

    I fear you watch too many BBC documentaries. At any rate, Hello? Interreligious abominations? Anti-Tradition Popes? Heretic Cardinals (Kasper and Lehmann)? That has certainly sunk in.

    “You do not give bishops political power: it attracts the worst sort of petty tyrant (and others less petty), and compromises the church.”

    And what about the power they stole through Conciliar Collegiality, the condemned heresy known as Gallicanism, by which Peter remains Primus but only in the sense that he is ‘first amongst equals’?

    How else do you think the Popes since Vatican II have been consistently overruled by their ‘Democratic Brethern’ in the Epicopate? The Pope says no to Communion in the hand, yet the bishops in almost every country go ahead with it anyway. The Pope says that Eucharistic Ministers should be used only in “extraordinary” circumstances, yet the bishops introduce them into almost every parish. The Pope says that every priest has a right to celebrate the old Mass without Episcopal permission, yet I know of bishops who do all in their power to thwart the Pope in the matter.

    Furthermore, the Pope says that homosexually inclined people should be given pastoral support, but only insofar as they are prepared to live celibate lives and not congregate with other homosexuals. Yet, some bishops have already provided parish churches (with priests) in which active homosexuals actually announce forthcoming ‘partnerships’ from the pulpit during Mass, (Soho, London), and in which men dressed as nuns receive holy Communion from the bishop himself (Holy Redeemer, California). And all this without really touching on those Concilair bishops who moved child molesting clergy from parish to parish. I rest my case!

  • Profidebookstore

    You don’t understand what that dogma actually means. You can’t learn it from the ambiguous, and if you wish, non-infallible statements of Pius IX, but from the Vatican II.

  • Profidebookstore

    “Never mind drifting off subject to Councils and their authority”
    COMMENT: no drifting. Somebody else started this subject of authority, and now cornered wants to change the subject.

    ” My question related to a single scandalous act of Pope John Paul II,”
    COMMENT: The word “scandalous” is offensive to eveyone, and the Catholic would not use it to refer to the Holy Father. But some, when cornered, shout offences.

    About participation in non-Catholic services,
    CIMMENT: It depends on what services are all about, their content, and degree of participation. To be present in a mosque or synagogue during prayer can only be spiritually uplifting; to be involved in those prayers which are compatible with the Catholic Church even more.

  • Profidebookstore

    We are no longer in 1990. The relations are very improved with the new Russian hierarchy, which is exactly the fruit of true ecumenism, willed by Our Lord. Suffices to know public statements of Patriarch Kiril, and his appointee for international affairs, Archbishop Hilarion, an Oxford graduate, composer, and theological brain. They now realize that we do not want to “convert” them – it woud be a nonsense – but to find out first what is the real difference between us, as different from imaginations and misundrstanding. The Russian neighbours, the Ukrainian Catholics, 5 milion, have exactly the same liturgy, and it is only the matter of time when their relations will improve. I was on Christmas in their cathedral, and one Ukrainian Orthodox priest was present in the sanctuary, and welcomed by the Bishop. They are not in “commmunion” with the Catholic Church but an integral part of it, and every
    Latin Rite Catholic would do much for the Church by going to the Liturgy (Mass) in their cathedral in Duke street at 10,00 on Sunday. Have you ever been there to support them by your presence. Or they to are suspicious of heresy? The Byzantine Liturgy is superior in all aspects, nor merely to the New Mass, but to the Tridentine Mass too.

    The things are moving but the 1000 years of separation has its consequences, and we need time, patience and prayers. The reunion cannot be an overnight event.

  • Profidebookstore

    What a concise contribution to the debate. We will soon reach the stage that 70 of each post will be a monologue.

  • Profidebookstore

    There is no room for a traditional Catholic, as different from “traditionalist”, for dissent or disobedience in matters that are not proposed infallibly. Those which are, are believed with Faith, which can be a Divine and Catholic Faith, if they are revealed, or Catholic Faith if they aren’t. To those which are not proposed infallibly, a religous assent is due. This is not merely Vatican II theology, but classic one too, as everybody who consults manuals of dogmatic theology, which – by the way – cover both, can find.
    The same manuals, L.Ott for example, which I qoted elsewhere, as the enquirer knows or should know,
    indicate the circumstances in which one may withould assent if after serious theological investigation of all grounds he concludes that the doctrine is eroneous. Even then he may not turn the witheld assent into an open dissent, not to mention usurp the teaching or governing office by inciting people to follow him.

    To continue my teaching office without claiming infallibility, you have to justify your non-assent by serious…etc investigation and – be silent. But, judging from past experience, one can now expect in response a series of infallible statements to the contrary.

    A am right, am I not?

  • Profidebookstore

    What one should do, as different from what one should believe or assent to, comes under moral theology. I am apsolutely fascinated with these moral lessons to the Holy Father, by an individual who has no clue, and has already demonstrated it twice, what the side effect means in moral theology.

    Not to mention the legthy sermon the aim of which is to change the previous subject; and jealousy for not being an Aristotle.

  • Profidebookstore

    What one should do, as different from what one should believe or assent to, comes under moral theology. I am apsolutely fascinated with these moral lessons to the Holy Father, by an individual who has no clue, and has already demonstrated it twice, what the side effect means in moral theology.

    Not to mention the legthy sermon the aim of which is to change the previous subject; and the jelaousy for not being an Aristotle.

  • Profidebookstore

    You mean Archbishop Hilarion? He is man in his late thirties I would say. But thanks for the information, if no misunderstanding is invoved.

  • Profidebookstore

    None of these decrees/statements are proposed infallibly; but all of a sudden they have turned binding.
    What a consistent theology! Or we are entering a new era of inconsistent thelogy, but what about tradition then?

    The fact is that the Catholic Faith is a communion of doctrine, government and worship, and the latter two are not abstractions by realities. If one does not alow himself to be actually governed by the Pope, not merely “accepts” his primacy; if one is not willing to celebrate the Mass with the Pope (not merely admit that it is valid), he is plainly – not in communion, i.e. ex-communione. No legalistic niceties can change this fact.

  • Profidebookstore

    No. But what I have said should be comprehensible to all who know the process of communication.
    Your problem is that you make no distinction between what is communicated to you by a communicator (don’t know better word), and what you make out it in your mind. In other words, you believe that the communiction is a mind-to-mind photocopy, i.e. that what you have in mind is identical to what is in the communicator’s mind. It is not, because we are not angels who communicate directly, but through the medium of communication, mostly a language, which is inherently ambiguous as one can see in the multi-volumes Oxford Dictionary.

    Really, my fellow Catholic, I don’t intend to cheat. Just think about it.

  • Profidebookstore

    I agree, in principle. I believe that DV 8 expands this by referring to the Tradition as the “the doctrine, life and worship” which is received from Christ all handed on. Now, at any stage of history the Church faces the problem of how to articulate this Tradition, and here is where the living Magisterium of that time comes in, to whom this articulation, i.e. inerpretation, is exclusively entrusted DV 10. Such interpretation then is incorporated into that same Tradition, to be together with it interpreted anew by the next Magisterium. So, the process goes on and each time it is articulated by the living Magisterium of that time. This is what the Pope calls Hermeneutic of Continuity, as distict from the Hermeneutic of Rupture.

    The latter, as I undersand it without claiming infallibility, is the case with “Progressives”, who tend to scrap the whole pre-Vatican II Tradition, as if the Vatican II were a super-council without continuity with the past, someting that starts anew; or “traditionalists” (in SSPX sense), who maintain that the Vatican II is a sort of under-council to which the pre-Vatican II Tradition is a super-council, a dettached entity into which the under-council is incorporated only if what it teaches is exactly identical not esentially identical, the rest being discarded as error or whatever, i.e. Rupture, and not as a continuity that grows with time. Vatican II is both under-council in so far is it is entirely dependant on Tradition which it has to interprete, and super-council in the sense that there is nothing else available to us here and now that can interprete Tradition, which itself is the past that cannot intrprete itself.

    That is how I understand it, and don’t see any other way how it can be understood, and I think that I can illustrate it by examples, but one would have to take more space than a reader can take in at once.

    And so, the Church grows in ever-deeper understanding of the Mystery revealed by Christ, to see whom it to see the Father, whom no one has ever seen by the Son who revealed Him to us. (I am just paraphrasing the NT texts from memmory). This is what the Apostles recieved and passed on in teaching, life and worship.

  • Profidebookstore

    Thanks, sincerely

  • Profidebopokstore

    This is my comment, better a part of it because it would be too long otherwise. But if the topic remains debated, I will add two more in 10 days or so, because I have to switch off for now.

    A homosexual relationship is morally wrong – that is not disputable; the Pope does not dispute it. The question arises: does the condom in any way changes it in moral sense?

    The condom as condom is neither evil, nor is its use evil, unless it is used for contraception in marriage; and possibly outside the marriage, but we do not have any MAGISTERIAL pronouncement on the latter. If anyone would dispute the latter, let him bring a reference to a MAGISTERIAL document.

    Condom is a piece of “rubber”, produced mainly, but not exclusively, for contraception, but it is itself morally indifferent. It is not evil to fit it over a wounded finger to make the wound watertight, or to fill it with air and play with it.

    It should not be identified with contraception. It cannot be used as a contraceptive by couple, whether married or unmarried, if they are definitely sterile. Homosexuals cannot use it as contraceptive either.

    Furthermore, even if it its physiological effect is contraceptive, it is not contraception in a MORAL sense, for instance: if it is used to prevent infection or in self-defence (female condom) against rape.

    Pope Paul clearly refers to it as the act which is “specifically INTENDED to prevent procreation” (HIV 14). If that intention is not present it is not contraception in MORAL sense, although the physiological effect is or might be contraceptive.

  • Profidebookstore

    I have already cornered you and you retired: now you are back. Welocome.
    Our Lady requested prayers for Russia at the time when the Russia was different from now. Now, the Russia is not different from others, and any prayer for its conversion, while none is explicitly offered for others, can only have racist or political overtones and be offensive to the Russians. Surely, that is not what Our Lady wants.

  • Profidebookstore

    I am not defending Islam in so far is its doctrine is incompatible with ours, but in so far it is compatible with ours and attacked unjustly. Nor does the Holy Father assents to its incompatible aspects but to the those which are compatible. The opening verse of Koran is essentially a Judeo-Christian prayer, and if is almost certain that Mohamad composed it on the basis of his contact with Jews and Christians. He couldn’t have possibly learned it from his pagan neighbours. Otherwise, one would have to assume that he received a Revelation, or had a great religious experience somehow.

    By the way, one commenter has brought to my attention that I went over the top when bringing Aristotle into debate. If you took offence, I sincerely apologize.

    As I have said to him later (see above about condoms), I have to switch of for ten days, and return to that topic if it will be still on the agenda.

  • Anonymous

    Profidebookstore: You haven’t “cornered” me at all at all. Nor did you oblige me to retire. I simply chose to abide by Our Lord’s advice to cease casting pearls before swine.

    “There’s none so blind as those who won’t see”.

    You are entitled to your personal opinion about racist or political overtones relative to the consecration of Russia – an opinion which has much credence amongst the Modernists who live in dread of Russia being consecrated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

    As to what Our Lady wants, I would much sooner abide by her view of what she had in mind than by your view of what she had in mind.

    As I said earlier, your views on the topicality of Our Lady’s words tell us so much about you.

    Have you got St Louis De Montfort’s wonderful book: “True Devotion to Mary” in your bookstore? If so, I would urge you to read it before you make any more false assumptions.

  • Anonymous

    I simply cannot believe that anyone with even a modicum of Catholic faith would believe that Our Lady didn’t know what she was doing when she requested the consecration of Russia.

    It’s patent nonsense to say that Russia was different then: Our Lady told Sr Lucia that in the end, the Pope would obey her request, “but it would be late.” So, she knew that, due to the weakness, disobedience, whatever, of the modern popes, her request would not be fulfilled until much later.

    And how utterly ridiculous to suggest than an act of consecration to Our Lady could possibly be misinterpreted as “racist” or “political.” It is, on the contrary, the highest possible honour.

    Behave yourself.

  • Anonymous

    Accepting change “Mons Basil Loftus” style, any old change is better than none, is the sign of someone who severely LACKS intelligence, my friend.

  • Anonymous

    What’s going on here is a desperation to justify Vatican II, that’s what is going on here.

    Just read the horrendous column by the (insert adjective) Mons Basil Loftus in this week’s Catholic Times, where his blatant falsehoods masquerade as scholarship. In case you miss it, for example, it seems that Pope Benedict “mistakenly” lifted the excommunication of Bishop Williamson, anti-semite etc YAWN etc.

    So, I repeat: What’s going on here, ref. the beatification of Pope John Paul II, is a desperation to justify Vatican II, that’s what is going on here.

  • Anonymous

    Spell it out – what did LG 14 teach about salvation that differed from Pius IX?

    Because the Pope himself has made clear that Vatican II taught no new dogma – that we can take or leave Vatican II. So if it’s wrong on this key dogma you are bound to reject it, PFBS.

  • Anonymous

    In other words, there is no answer to all that factual stuff, is there PFBS? Concede defeat gracefully!

  • Anonymous

    Oh so that is just because YOU say so, PFBS? I don’t think so. Unfortunately for you the “legal niceties” are of central importance. Pope John Paul II himself said that “By its very nature, Canon Law demands obedience.”

  • Anonymous

    Father Michael Mary continually claims to have abusive communications. He thinks he is being abused if someone disagrees with him. Pray for him, but don’t expect any rational discussion on anything beyond whether to have cheese of after dinner mints.

  • Anonymous

    Martyjo gave solid facts. You refuse to accept them. You are like a lot of modern Catholics who just cannot bring yourselves to say you were and are wrong about the SSPX – God help you, because you are in the anomalous position of having to recognise St Athanasius, now a doctor of the Church, who was TWICE pronounced excommunicated. St Athanasius said: “They have the (church) buildings, we have the Faith.” Precisely the situation of the SSPX today.

    Who would you have followed – your bishop who denied the divinity of Christ, or Athanasius?

  • Anonymous

    The Church STILL condemns usury, Nishant, so your analogy doesn’t stand.

    Do you think God is pleased to see His popes standing alongside pagans, encouraging them to pray to their false deities? Really?

  • Anonymous

    Listen, PFBS – I’ve got a Masters in Theology and I struggle to understand your posts. There’s a difference between theology and dodgyology. Trust me. With respect of course…

  • Anonymous

    Please stop insulting Our Lady. Do you think she asked for the Consecration of Russia without God knowing about it? Don’t you realise she was His messenger? It’s absurd to say that Russia is now improved to the point where Our Lady’s requested consecration no longer applies. God is unchanging. He wants the consecration of Russia and it WILL happen: Our Lady said: “it will be late” but it will take place.

    Please read up on Fatima. You really DO need to have the facts to hand on this, the most important event of the 20th century. http://www.fatima.org

  • http://twitter.com/appgiveaway Al

    What happened???

    Founder: Al, http://www.appgiveaway.com

  • Anonymous

    EditorCT, I’m afraid you’re on a loser with PFBS. His defence of Islam really says all that needs saying. I thought at first that he was just another poor Catholic victim of these very confusing liberal times, but his wilful discarding of pre-Conciliar Church teaching, nay, his wifful opposition to it, have since shown me that he does not hold the Catholic Faith. Re-read his contributions throughout and you’ll find that his entire argument is based on the myth that Vatican II was an infallible Council, and that Popes have a divine right to alter doctrine, such as with condemned ecumenism and interfaith initiatives. There is not a shred of actual theology in anything he writes. Best “shake the dust from your feet” where objectivity is wontonly thrown to the four winds.

  • Anonymous

    Nishant,

    Living Tradition in the Church is not what you claim it to be. Usury, for example, was not the condemning of money lending with interest per se, but rather the lending of money with unjust, exorbitant interest rates. I think you’ll find that the Church has never altered Her position in this respect.

    Tradition is indeed a living thing in the Church, but it can never contradict what has gone before. That would be revolution! There is a world of difference, for example, between Pope John XXIII’s insertion of the name of St. Joseph into the Canon of the ancient Mass and the scrapping of the ancient Canon in favour of a New Mass that pleases Protestants. The former is true living Tradition, the other a clear break with it (see the Ottaviani Intervention).

    Now the same may be said of false ecumenism and interreligious gatherings, which things are clearly condemned with authority by the living Tradition of the Church, unless, of course, one accepts the ludicrous proposition that individual Popes can overturn the doctrinal teaching of their predecessors at will in the name of living Tradition. It is a heresy, says St. Pius X, to posit the notion that the Church must alter her doctrine to suit the needs of the time.

    Earthly peace may be desirable but it can never usurp the principle role of Christ’s Church on earth, which is the salvation of souls through Her alone.

    “But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach a gospel to you besides that which we have preached to you, let him be anathema.” (Galatians 1:8).

    “Jesus answered: Amen, amen I say to thee, unless a man be born again of water and the Holy Ghost, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. (John 3:5).” No search for “common ground” or building of “good will” in this frank statement of Our Lord, you’ll note!

    Can a Pope contradict this teaching of Our Lord, upheld with fidelity by the Magisterium throughout the centuries, so that instead of preaching conversion to the true Faith to those lost in the darkness of heresy and demon worship, he might join with them in some mythical search for world peace? Peace comes from praying to Christ the King alone. Anyone who silences or understates that clear message has no claim whatever on the living Tradition of the Church.

    You say that at Assisi, Pope John Paul II said: “I humbly submit that peace bears the name of Jesus Christ”. I answer, why “humbly?” Why not militantly, like his predecessors? Does the King’s delegate submit the King’s authority humbly to his inferiors?

    What about: “All power is given to me in heaven and in earth. Going therefore, teach ye all nations; baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you…” Now, where does that leave Assisi?

  • Anonymous

    EditorCT,

    I have already said that I intend to send Fr. Michael Mary a canary to keep him company on Alcatraz (Papa Stronsay). more than 18 months have passed since his “reconcilliation” and still he waits for canonical status. The local Bishop won’t let him celebrate the Tridentine Mass anywhere outside of that Island prison. He is effectively neutralised. Such is the destiny of all priests who go silent on the doctrinal errors of Conciliarism for the sake of approval. I feel for him and his community, still banished despite their compromise.

  • Anonymous

    EditorCT, there is a desperation to beatify Pope John Paul II because liberalism in the Church is failing fast and needs a champion quickly. More and more young priests, and faithful, are returning to the Tridentine rite of Mass. They are rejecting the banality of Conciliar Catholicism in favour of the sacredness of Traditional Catholic belief and worship.

    As for Mgr. Loftus, any Catholic hierarchy worth its salt would have silenced him long ago. It would certainly have silenced him if he had been attacking ecumenism or interfaith dialogue. He’d have been in deepest Swaziland by now! But just so long as its the sacred Traditions of the Church he writes against, he’s quite safe in his highland retirement home “in communion” and “good standing.” Tragic!

  • Anonymous

    Nishant, you fall into the heresy of Quietism by citing what (may have) happened in the early Church.

    Liturgical rules were introduced to protect the Sacred Species as the Church grew under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, and in response to abuses, both real and potential, the pastors of the Church acted to ensure that the Blessed Sacrament was treated with all the reverence due. The fact is that the rules are being flouted today, demonstrating, it seems clear to me, a LACK of belief in, never mind reverence for, the Real Presence.

    As for this business of “submission” to the Pontiff – the above mentioned liturgical abusers haven’t submitted to a single one of the Pope’s instructions, stipulating that lay people should not be used to give out Holy Communion if there is a priest present. (1997 Instruction) Yet, today, in the Catholic Times, you’ll read the mysteriously imported from Leeds cleric, Basil Loftus, saying that they are NOT “extraordinary ministers” – they are to be used routinely,he thinks. Well, he doesn’t think, but you’ll get my drift. That’s where the barefaced defiance of the Pope is to be found, in those laity, at the behest of their defiant and faithless priests and bishops. who are prancing about sanctuaries the world over, handling – in their arrogance – the Blessed Sacrament.

    Finally, Loftus HATES the Traditional Latin Mass so let me tell you what Bishop Olmstead of Texas said about folk like him. He said this: “It is one thing to be indifferent towards the Traditional Latin Mass. It is quite another to hate it. Hatred of the old rite Mass, comes straight from Hell.”

    That’s one reason why I call Mgr Loftus’s column “hellish” – but it’s only one reason.

  • Anonymous

    Well, please translate for the rest of us – some of us only have a couple of degrees.

  • Anonymous

    Yes, but do you think he’d prefer cheese to After Eight mints?

  • Anonymous

    Since Conciliarism is about all things cheesy I think it would be safe to err on the side of cheese, unless there’s a mint called after 1965!!

  • Nishant Jeyaraj

    You’re right, PFBS.

    As Chesterton remarked, the Catholic Church has always managed that astonishing feat of deftly navigating excesses on the right and omissions on the left, as with Nestorianism and Monophysitism for e.g. The same is true with regard to “traditionalists” and progressives.

  • Nishant Jeyaraj

    Actually, that’s precisely why it stands, ECT. Because the Church still condemns religious indifference as well. Look up actual Magisterial teaching Ut Unum Sint, for instance. Dominus Iesus preferably, since its publication involves two of the allegedly morbidly modernised Popes. Finally, the 1994 Catechism of the Catholic Church exposes the strawman that the SSPX have been burning since heaven knows when regarding religious liberty.

    Usury, Martyjo, cannot be derisively dismissed in a few lines. The actions of the Church, I have said, have found distinguished defenders even outside the fold, but it is more complicated than you seem to hold. But to address questions like this is precisely why theology exists. So, the lay faithful are not in any way expected to lose sleep over it. This is the error of sola traditio-ists, to try and pit the Papacy against itself, like some do to the Old and New Testaments, while others to the Bible and the Church? Is it any wonder that many see sedevacantism as the logical consequence of what you are putting forth?

    And no, kissing a present is a sign of friendship to the giver, nothing more, nor was worldly peace the actual sort after end.

  • Nishant Jeyaraj

    Please give me a 1-2-3-4 list of the heresies or errors you are accusing the Magisterium or the recent Popes of teaching or holding personally. We will look into them. I’m talking about an Encyclical or the Catechism, not about this Cardinal or that bishop or some organization.

    And St.Paul sought the common ground, quoting their own poets. The Apostles gathered with the Jews in their synagogues.

  • Nishant Jeyaraj

    What Martyjo said to me, sir, I shall reply to him. The Church has not claimed excommunications to be infallible, has she? Only normative. In any case, I don’t need to appeal to her authority. The SSPX are wrong on religious liberty. DH is sufficiently explanatory, if read without preconceptions.

  • Nishant Jeyaraj

    If you think the Popes and his Cardinals are bold faced liars, what point is there of continuing? You’ve had speculations on what the TSoF was, everyone did, but it’s over and the secret clearly wasn’t what you thought it was. Also, the consecration has already been done and Sr.Lucia confirmed that. It was done in 1984. They did delay it, then they did repent and do it, but late, exactly as she said. But they did it. Did the Blessed Mother say the peace would be immediate. No, she said it would come in the end.

  • Nishant Jeyaraj

    I’m unsure who this Mgr Loftus is, nor does it matter. I don’t hate the EF nor am I even indifferent towards it. But this is beside the point. But when the Church chooses to go one direction, we must follow as one body. If God wills another direction, He will direct the head otherwise. A member of the body does not disobey or pass judgment on the head. Only someone who is outside the body does, in fact can do, that. Yet that is what you are doing. Like I said, the OF still sufficiently emphasises the sacrificial character of the Mass. In the meanwhile, many Protestants, Scott Hahn, Francis Beckwith, among countless others, have reconsidered the Catholic Faith. This was God’s great mercy towards them.

    The Catholics who left did so through their own fault. It is sufficiently explained, like I said, by the widespread rise in contraception, against explicit Magisterial teaching even before widespread use of the Roman Rite in its ordinary form as it is today, consequently abortion, and pretty much the rest of the moral edifice. This was the real reason for the declines so often touted and really it is naivety to suggest they would have remained if the EF had remained.

    Martyjo, I owe you a more detailed response, which I will soon get down to.

  • Anonymous

    “If you think the Popes and his Cardinals are bold faced liars, what point is there of continuing?”

    I echoed Sister Lucy’s documented warning of a “diabolical disorientation” affecting the clergy. I related this warning to her assurance that the Third Secret punishment is in Apocalypse, Chapters 8-13, in which the tail of the dragon sweeps a third of the stars from heaven down to earth (understood by theologians to mean the apostasy of many consecrated souls). I then quoted a number of senior Churchmen as having apparently confirmed events. I said nothing of Popes and Cardinals being “bold-faced liars.”

    You should acquaint yourself, as I have over many years, with the entire history of Fatima before jumping to rash conclusions. I suggest you start with the notorious Fr. Eduard Dhanis S.J., and his ‘Fatima I – Fatima II’ theory.

    “You’ve had speculations on what the TSoF was, everyone did, but it’s over and the secret clearly wasn’t what you thought it was.”

    I don’t do “speculations” in so important a matter as the Catholic Faith; neither do I put forward my own opinions. Rather, as can be seen from the post you responded to, I quote those in authority. As for the TSoF having been fully revealed, “over,” as you put it, did not Pope Benedict XVI recently admit that the clerical sexual scandals that have rocked the Church are a continuation of the Third Secret of Fatima? So it’s not over by any manner of means.

    Furthermore, what became of the Third Secret text that Sister Lucy clearly documented in relation to the vision, which opens with the line: “In Portugal the dogma of the Faith will always be preserved, etc…?”

    The Vatican publication of 2000 made no mention of a text, even though it is known by all Fatima experts to exist. See again the damaging theory of Fr. Dhanis and read the history of events at Fatima.org. Or, better yet, get the three-volume work by Frère Michel de la Sainte Trinité.

    “Also, the consecration has already been done and Sr. Lucia confirmed that. It was done in 1984.”

    Now this is a bold-faced lie that even Pope John Paul II would not subscribe to. Our Lady’s request was for a public and solemn consecration of Russia to her Immaculate Heart by the Pope in union with the world’s bishops. She was quite specific about that.

    What happened in 1984 did not include the world’s bishops and made no mention of Russia. Sister Lucy is recorded at the time as having stated that it did NOT fulfil Our Lady’s request.

    For example, here are her answers to some questions put during a September 1985 Interview with Sol de Fatima, the Blue Army’s Official Publication in Spain:

    Question: John Paul II had invited all the bishops to join in the consecration of Russia, which he was going to make at Fatima on May 13, 1982, and which he was to renew at the end of the Holy Year in Rome on March 25, 1984, before the original statue of Our Lady of Fatima. Has he not therefore done what was requested at Tuy?

    Sister Lucy: There was no participation of all the bishops and there was no mention of Russia.

    Question: So the consecration was not done as requested by Our Lady?
    Sister Lucy: No. Many bishops attached no importance to this act.

    Now, lest any doubt remain, let us pay heed to this admission of Pope John Paul II, as included in his 1984 act of Consecration of the world: ‘Enlighten especially the peoples of which, You Yourself are awaiting our consecration and confiding.’

    The Pope admits here that he’s not consecrating Russia, and, as Sister Lucy said above, he doesn’t name Russia and he doesn’t include the bishops of the world. Post-1989 claims that Sister Lucy retracted her previous public statements and issued new, contradictory (private) ones in the matter are spurious to say the least.

    Besides that, the death of a Pope “a man dressed in white” by a “band of soldiers firing bullets and arrows,” as described in the vision of the Third Secret released in 2000, does not correspond in any way with the failed attempt on Pope John Paul’s life in 1981 by a solitary gunman. Do Catholics actually weigh these things?

    “They did delay it, then they did repent and do it, but late, exactly as she said. But they did it.”

    Who are “they”? The Pope, as I have pointed out made a solitary consecration of the world to Our Lady. There was no “they,” since the world’s bishops did not participate.

    “Did the Blessed Mother say the peace would be immediate. No, she said it would come in the end.”

    Actually, what she said was: “In the end my Immaculate Heart will triumph, the Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me…etc.” So you see, it is the consecration by the Pope that will come in the end (late). The peace will follow immediately.

    Sorry about the length of the post. It’s a very complicated subject and there are so many falsehoods circulating. I advise all to study Fatima objectively and in depth. It pays to acquaint oneself with the testimonies of witnesses and experts in this grave matter.

  • Anonymous

    I will duly oblige when you first provide me with the evidence from traditional Magisterial teaching upon which the modern doctrines of ecumenism, interreligious gatherings, freedom of conscience, religious liberty, Collegiality and separation of Church and State, stand. They must be there somewhere, unless they are new doctrines!

    I can certainly provide evidence from Encyclicals, saints and Syallbi condemning such doctrines, as I have already quoted many times. It is you who claims that Vatican II is infallible against the very statements of senior prelates to the contrary, not I. Hence, the burden of proof is on you to show that the above doctrines are in line with tradition. I merely quote the Magisterium which has always declared to the contrary. So, how is Assisi justifiable in the light of previous Magisterial teaching? I’ll be interested in your response.

    “And St.Paul sought the common ground, quoting their own poets. The Apostles gathered with the Jews in their synagogues.”

    In which version of the Bible did you find that? I use the tried and trusted Catholic Douey Rheims myself. Anyway, it’s perfectly understandable that the Apostles in the beginning tried to win their fellow Jews to Christ. Show me any passage in which they silence Christ and instead announce to their fellow Jews: “we are all the children of Abraham.”

  • peterb

    Dear EditorCT,
    But Jesus did not insist that priests should remain celibate. Even Apostle Peter had a mother-in-law, remember? And what is the logic in deciding about priestly celibacy after 1000 years after Christ ascended to heaven? Did Catholic church had revelation that Jesus was celibate only then?

  • Anonymous

    Mgr Basil Loftus, you are refering to the writer in the Catholic Times I presume, likely has very good ideas on where the Church has got to go.
    If it was left up to some of the people expressing views on this site the mass would still be said in Latin. Which would leave the central tenet of Catholic Christianity as self-indulgent babble unintelligable to very few, and hardly expressing truth in an effective way.

    Of course there should not be change for changes sake, but nobody is suggesting that, the very reason that the pressure of change arrises in the Church, or elsewhere for that matter, is because it is relevant and should be looked into.

  • Anonymous

    paulsays, I take it you have never read the rantings of Mgr Basil Loftus? He denies key doctrines such as the physical Real Presence of Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament and the physical resurrection – Jesus didn’t have a real, physical body, according to Mgr Loftus, post-resurrection, so the Gospel writers got it wrong. These heresies rather suggest that Mgr Loftus has NO idea where the Church has got to go. HE needs to go – not the Church.

    And in case you haven’t caught up with the news, Latin remains the official language of the Church and the new Mass was supposed to keep all the main prayers in Latin. The bishops and priests disobeyed that rubric. The latest Mass translation does, however, include accurate translations from the Latin and lots of Latin as well, I’m told, so you are going to have to move with the times, Sugar Plum, and accept these “new” changes – from English at the latest new Mass to whole chunks in Latin.

    I hope now that you won’t do an about turn from your final paragraph. Obviously, this latest Mass translation to restore Latin, must be “relevant” or the Pope wouldn’t be insisting upon it – yes?

  • Nishant Jeyaraj

    My apologies for the delayed response.Now I don’t agree with you about burden of proof. The default position is always the same position as the Magisterium. If someone alleges a different position, he ought to have very good reason for doing so. This is not to say that the Magisterium is capricious or arbitrary. Thus, it is for you to demonstrate the alleged contradiction, not for me to show consistency, even though I believe, that can be done.

    “Modern doctrines of ecumenism, interreligious gatherings, freedom of conscience, religious liberty, Collegiality and separation of Church and State”

    First: Let’s have definitions.

    Ecumenism: A collaborated effort to arrive at unity in the truth through love. Not at all the error of religious indifference, even though prudence for the greater good is a due consideration.

    For instance, if there is a likelihood at least that 250 million Orthodox may reunite with the Church, then it may be well worth it to try to achieve that, even if some Catholic souls may leave in the process, which is not the Magisterium’s fault. St.Thomas’ Aquinas’ Principle of Double Effect applies.

    Interreligious gatherings: People who prayed when they met together, like I said, not who met to pray together.

    It is not as if anyone believes that peace can only be achieved if we prayed together with unbelievers. Rather, it is because peace is a common ground that a prayer in the same place can be helpful towards the easing of tensions. This might easen the burden of the persecuted Church.

    It doesn’t mean that these things don’t have dangers, they do, but unless you have an absolute proof that this is illicit, it comes down to saying you feel or that you personally think you know what is better for the Church than the Magisterium

    Liberty of conscience: I’ve said before, is only the person’s right to freely seek the truth which comes from his duty to seek the truth.

    Again, if a person believed God required him to pray 5 times a day, and yet did not do it, he would sin. This is the doctrine of St.Thomas. For that reason, it is reasonable not to unduly restrain people from acting in accordance with what they believe. Of course, this is within limits.

    Church-State separation: There is no such thing. Nevertheless, to quote the 1911 CE, again “How far in practice Church and State should go together depends on a number of circumstances and cannot be determined by any general rule”

    Grace be with you.

  • Nishant Jeyaraj

    Clarification: Ease the burden as in that non-believers who in many places hate the Faith may, in actual interaction with Catholic Christians, lose some of that hatred, or at least, be pressured into not manifesting it.

    Once more, the message of religious freedom in this context was nothing short of prophetic. People don’t realize it wasn’t directed to Christian kingdoms who were debating whether or not to kill heretics. It was at a time when Christians were persecuted. And one can hardly maintain either to Communists then or to Muslims now that they ought not persecute Christianity because Chrristianity is true, can we? Rather, when it is put forth as religious freedom, it puts more pressure on them to lay off the persecution.