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PODCAST: Madeleine Teahan, Rabbi Sheridan and Fr Alexander Lucie-Smith discuss ‘On Heaven and Earth’ by Pope Francis

Welcome to the first in a new series of Catholic Herald Podcast Debates.

By on Thursday, 9 May 2013

On Heaven and Earth

On Heaven and Earth

Today, to coincide with the release of On Heaven and Earth: Pope Francis on Faith, Family and the Church in the 21st Century, I discuss the new book with Fr Alexander-Lucie Smith and Rabbi Sybil Sheridan. The book is a dialogue between Pope Francis while he was Archbishop of Buenos Aires and Rabbi Skorka.

Click on the link below to listen to three short discussions between Rabbi Sheridan and Fr Lucie-Smith, beginning with a discussion of the problems this new book poses, the Devil and Pope Francis on feminism.

In the second part of our discussion we examine the Israeli-Palestinian Question and Pope Francis’s potential for diplomacy, the purpose of inter-religious dialogue, euthanasia, the abandonment of the elderly and the Liverpool Care Pathway.

Finally we consider the Pope’s views on charity, our attitudes to the poor, voting in political elections, Pope Pius XII, Catholic prayers for the conversion of Jews, marriage, Rabbi Skorka’s portrayal of Judaism and Pope Francis’s portrayal of Catholicism.

Thank you for listening and we hope you enjoy it.

CatholicHerald.co.uk

  • paulpriest

    Any chance of not recording these podcasts in an echoing office?
    [it is unbearable - there must be somewhere more comfy and acoustically accommodating]

    Was the repeat of the original conversation in the final part just a technical fault?

    a] I understand that dialogue requires some diplomacy but given there is criticism of His Holiness and the Rabbi of not confronting the tough issues – Why did neither of the two Catholics inform Rabbi Sheridan that she had completely misunderstood the meaning of the ‘People of the First Covenant’ – the Rabbi has swallowed the Cdl Kasper revisionism of 1st Covenant=salvation without recognition of their Messiah; when CCC #839 & #840 make it perfectly clear that recognition of Christ is imperative – not knowing & misunderstanding is NOT an opt out clause which grants salvation – ex ecclesia nulla salus! [and I say this as a Son of a Jew - a Son of the House of Levi]

    b] I know Fr ALS and myself have our differences but it’s very awkward for a Catholic Doctor of Moral Philosophy to not respond to the Rabbi’s proposal for assisted dying [especially after she stated that's where Rabbi Skorka & the future Pope would have probably diverged]

    [p.s. Argentinian universal suffrage was in1949 - the lifting of civil codes barring women from civic roles in 1938 - the 1920s was a time of massive feminist outpourings from Socialist & Anarchist groups - placating government false promises - and a pro-family, pro-matriarchal Catholic response of Feminismo Cristiano]

  • anon

    Catholic Truth Society online recently published extracts from ‘Francis:Pope of a New World’ in which the Cardinal expressed admiration for his former boss, the female Managing Director of a chemical company.

    The very dire situation we now find ourselves in vis- a- vis the family, abortion and euthanasia does require women to re-focus on what feminism actually means today, while acknowledging that there remains much to be done ( literacy levels, girls’ school attendance etc) in the developing world.

  • http://jabbapapa.wordpress.com/ Julian Lord

    There’s no “double Covenant”, there’s only a metamorphosis of the single Covenant between God and mankind in Christ.

  • anon

    “The Church…cannot forget that She received the revelation of the Old Testament through the people with whom God, in His inexpressible mercy, concluded the Ancient Covenant, Nor can She forget that She draws sustenance from the root of that well-cultivated olive tree onto which have been grafted the wild shoots, the Gentiles.”

    2nd Vatican Council document: Nostra Aetate 1965

  • CatholicBlogger
  • $27740841

    ‘There is no “double Covenant”, there’s only a metamorphosis of the single Covenant between God and mankind in Christ.’
    That’s right, there is no “double Covenant”. In other words, God did not leave His Covenant with the Jews intact and then create another Covenant with the Gentiles. God’s Covenant with the Jews ended with the Crucifixion.
    This is the age old teaching of the Church and yet nobody questioned Rabbi Sheridan’s exposition of the ‘double Covenant’ theory. It is this ‘double Covenant’ theory which leads many Jewish commentators to believe that the Church has changed direction in Her attitude towards Judaism. And to believe that if the Church can change in this regards, then She can change in others.
    But is the ‘double Covenant’ theory the teaching of the Church? If it is, then the teaching of the Church is that Salvation is possible without Christ. But since Salvation is not possible without Christ, why did those in ‘dialogue’ with Rabbi Sheridan not point this out and at the same time squash the theologically incorrect theory of the ‘double Covenant’?
    Oh, I know. Because they were in ‘dialogue’ and occasions of dialogue do not allow for the simple Truth being told, lest it offend and the ‘dialogue’ ends.

  • http://jabbapapa.wordpress.com/ Julian Lord

    That’s right, there is no “double Covenant”. In other words, God did
    not leave His Covenant with the Jews intact and then create another
    Covenant with the Gentiles. God’s Covenant with the Jews ended with the Crucifixion

    No — The New Covenant is a transformation of the Old Covenant. But God does not break his promises, so that the Jews participate in the New Covenant — dixit Benedict XVI “in a mysterious manner”.

    (The theology concerning this question is actually fairly complex, and I have never seen it explained satisfactorily — Benedict XVI claims that no satisfactory explanations of it exist)

    The theology of orthodox Judaism and that of Orthodox/Catholic Christianity both agree though, that there can be no such thing as a “double covenant” — albeit for opposite reasons.

    There is no support in either Scripture nor in the constant teaching of the Church for the idea that the Old Covenant was somehow “cancelled” — this is simply a theological opinion of some mediaeval theologians that was broadly popular among Catholics until the 19th century or thereabouts, and retains some popularity among some Catholics even today. It has no actual place in the dogmata, but it is simply an interpretation of doctrine — which, to be fair, has never been condemned either, because the actual truth of the matter resides in an unrevealed Mystery of God.

    The fact that the Jews participate (somehow) in the New Covenant is however very clear from Scripture — in Apocalypse and elsewhere we are taught that those righteous among the Jews will belong to the Church of the Christ in the Afterlife.

    How ? Scripture and the Doctrine are completely silent on this question of “how” ; it is a Mystery — all that we are told on this question is that all of those, Jew or Gentile, who come to know that the Christ is the Son of God are called to conversion into the Catholic Faith.

    Your other comments are perhaps a little forcible, but you do hit the nail on the head about some compromises with the Faith that some kinds of interreligious dialogue tend to encourage…

  • http://jabbapapa.wordpress.com/ Julian Lord

    the position that: (a) the Jews retain legal possession of the Old
    Covenant; (b) that this covenant is independent of, but runs
    concurrently with, the New Covenant; and (c) most hold that the Old
    Covenant is the means by which God provides salvation to the Jews

    All three of these positions are heretical.

    The theology is that whomsoever is saved, Jew or Gentile, is saved through the New Covenant.

    It seems to be true that the Old Covenant and the New Covenant are one, and that the Old Covenant only ceased to be in the sense of becoming the New. What this should mean for those Jews faithful to the Old Covenant is clearly going to be a very difficult question to make head nor tail of…

  • Benedict Carter

    The Church has always sought their conversion of course. Until the Revolution.

    And those heretical positions Jabba are heard from priests, Bishops and Cardinals. Open your eyes, man.

  • $27740841

    It’s simple Jabba. Old Covenant ends, New Covenant begins. Easy.

    A Covenant is not a promise though, so the objection made by those who claim that the Old Covenant was never revoked because ‘God doesn’t break His promises’ isn’t quite accurate. A Covenant is more like a contract and requires both parties to adhere to its provisions.

    Regarding ‘those righteous among the Jews [who] will belong to the Church of the Christ in the Afterlife’, I’ve been given to understand that this will be due to their conversion. Again, a simple matter.
    As for the force of my arguments, I’m sooooooo tired of ecumenical, mustn’t offend anyone, must be nice, tip-toeing around the issues. The Truth shall set you free. Not dialogue.

  • $27740841

    During the podcast (at 16.00) Rabbi Sheridan claims that since the Second Vatican Council, the Church has turned its position around concerning the Jewish people and has ‘come forward with the idea of the double covenant’, which proposes that God never forsook the original covenant.
    My point is that Fr Lucie-Smith agreed with her, not in so many words, but by his silence and his appreciative noises.
    So here we have the Catholic Herald’s first Podcast in which a false position is proposed and is left unchallenged, all in the interests of dialogue. Or could it be due to ignorance?

  • http://jabbapapa.wordpress.com/ Julian Lord

    It’s simple Jabba. Old Covenant ends, New Covenant begins. Easy.

    That’s perfectly fine as a simplified presentation of the doctrine :-)

    It goes beyond its breaking point, however, in questions relating to the deeper theology in general, or to Catholic-Jewish interreligious dialogue specifically.

  • $27740841

    Why should the ‘deeper theology’ contradict the ‘simplified presentation of the doctrine’?
    As for the problems that Catholic doctrine presents to those engaging in interreligious dialogue (with all religions), I imagine they are dealt with something like this:
    “Christ is God.”
    “No he isn’t.”
    “Now let’s move on quickly and share some anecdotes about the extravagant dresses brides like to wear on their wedding day.”

  • http://jabbapapa.wordpress.com/ Julian Lord

    Why should the ‘deeper theology’ contradict the ‘simplified presentation of the doctrine’?

    Who said anything about “contradict” ?

    I repeat myself — It’s perfectly fine as a simplified presentation of the doctrine. I do actually mean that !!!

  • $27740841

    You’re right. You didn’t say “contradict”.
    You said that the simplified presentation of the doctrine –
    ‘goes beyond its breaking point, however, in questions relating to the deeper theology in general, or to Catholic-Jewish interreligious dialogue specifically.’

  • http://jabbapapa.wordpress.com/ Julian Lord

    I also said : “The theology concerning this question is actually fairly complex, and I have never seen it explained satisfactorily — Benedict XVI claims that no satisfactory explanations of it exist

    I do not have greater powers of explanation of doctrine than the Pontiff Emeritus

  • anon

    -A fierce light beats upon the Jew-

    The reference to a “First Covenant” is Heb 9:15, according to the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
    “A people who might acknowledge (God) and serve Him in holiness.”

  • QAX3kFmH

    Beautiful Document

  • mahatmacoatmabag

    who is Rabbi Sybil Sheridan? I’m Jewish, believe in God , live in Israel , but not religious per se, but even I know that there is no such thing a female Rabbi in Judaism. Who ever Sybil Sheridan is she is a fake, women can’t be Rabbi’s in Judaism, she must be a follower of that fake form of Judaism called mistakenly Reform Judaism & those Plonkers are about as Jewish as a Pork Pie