Friday, June 20, 2014

Francis bows his head to receive Justin's blessing


It is not remotely surprising that the Archbishop of Canterbury should desire to bless the Pope of Rome, but the humble attitude of His Holiness in accepting it has caused something of a stir among Roman Catholic traditionalists:



Is Pope Francis humbly acknowledging the episcopal ministry of Archbishop Justin and affirming the validity of Anglican Holy Orders? Is he recognising that we are neither heretics (as it still says in Westminster Cathedral) nor 'separated brethren', but part of the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church?

It appears so. For he has previously opened his heart to Protestant Evangelicals, and as Cardinal Bergoglio he knelt at a Protestant prayer meeting to receive the blessings of several Protestant pastors:


And you haven't heard him talk much about the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham or the provisions of the Apostolic Constitution 'Anglicanorum coetibus' of Pope Benedict XVI, have you?

For many Roman Catholic traditionalists, this is one hell of an ecumenical mess, sending out confusing messages about the Faith, the (Roman) Catholic Church and the uniqueness of ministry of the Vicar of Christ. They may think this a false expression of showman humility — a theatrical performance; a patronising gesture of genuine compassion but counterfeit ecclesiology. But His Grace detects a spiritual, doctrinal and moral shift in ecumenical relations. Pope Francis is more Anglican than many believe, or would find it possible to admit.

347 Comments:

Blogger Mark Williams said...

The true church is the body of believers not institutions, so I'm glad they can recognise one another as true believers, now if the rest of us can follow their example we might get somewhere near the ideal that Jesus wanted. Let's concentrate on what unites us rather than that which divides.

20 June 2014 at 10:33  
Blogger Martin Marprelate said...

'Pope Francis is more Anglican than many believe, or would find it possible to admit.

I do hope not, partly because I would not wish Anglicanism as it now stands upon anyone, and partly because 'The Bishop of Rome hath no jurisdiction in this Realm of England' (Art. XXXVII).

It strikes me as one apostate blessing another. 'Every plant that My heavenly Father has not planted will be uprooted. Leave them alone. They are blind leaders of the blind' (Matt. 15:13)

20 June 2014 at 10:37  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

Frankly, I think all this shows is that certain Traditionalist Catholics ought to find better things to do with their time.

I look at that picture, and I see one baptised Christian asking God's blessing on another baptised Christian - as indeed any Christian may do. Most Catholics would pray for God to bless and keep His Holiness. A lot of us would on occasion remember the Archbishop of Canterbury in our prayers if we knew he was in trouble, or facing great challenges.

Christian asks God for His blessing on other Christian. Oh, the scandal.

20 June 2014 at 10:56  
Blogger Len said...

What the motives of Pope Francis are I can only guess at but he seems to be reaching out across the denominations and to the World in general.
The Reformers tried to get the Church back on course but that move seems to have slowed almost to a stop.The slide back into worldly values seems to rob all forward motion from every move of God. There doesn`t now seem to be a denomination or a Church which has everything right so perhaps we should look across the denominations to 'the Church invisible' the Body of Christ.This Church exists within(and without) the denominations and consists of those who have been regenerated by the Holy Spirit.
We cannot know the true position of any other believers but we can assess our own position and perhaps this is what we should be doing during these turbulent times.
If we have been regenerated by the holy Spirit He will be our guide and will give us wisdom and discernment as how to react to these times.

20 June 2014 at 11:00  
Blogger JohnofEnfield said...

"Peace be with you". There is no greater blessing.

20 June 2014 at 11:11  
Blogger Uncle Brian said...

Out of curiosity, Your Grace: was the courtesy reciprocated? Do we have a picture of the Pope blessing the Archbishop?

20 June 2014 at 11:26  
Blogger Ars Hendrik said...

Popes have been popping in and out of churches, synagogues and mosques (yes, even those) for ages, usually exchanging blessings and sharing prayers, etc. And, as usual, the media is indulging itself in speculative assumptions about the significance of what this may or may not herald.

But what, exactly, is a 'Catholic Traditionalist', how are you defining membership. I know what an Anglican Traditionalist is, because you are always in so much of a tizzy about what you may or may not agree with. Catholics are different.

We believe that the Catholic Church is the mystical body of Christ on Earth and the Pope is his elected vicar. We look to the Magisterium of the Church and our Catechism to determine what is right. It was our Church that put the Bible together, sorted the good from the bad books and determined, under divine inspiration, the truths of our faith.

If the Pope chooses to accept a blessing from the Archbishop then you can be sure that he is not 'departing' from anything. Just as when he recently spoke about homosexuals and wanting to move on from the obsession with sexuality and women's rights he was not heralding a change in Church teaching on any of these things, merely clarifying what is actually important.

So Catholics who call themselves 'traditionalists', and then go on to question the actions of the Pope as if they, somehow, are his unelected judges, are not traditional Catholics, they are just bad ones who have too high an opinion of their own opinions. They should shut up and go to confession.

20 June 2014 at 11:28  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

As an ex RC (and now an ex Anglican) I do hope and would wish to believe that the Spirit of God is moving across all churches.

Error is still however error even if it comes with a semblance of humility and many a warm word and gesture.

I wish Justin and Frank well. But it's not me they're accountable to.

20 June 2014 at 11:32  
Blogger Len said...

I believe that the Body of Christ is 'the Church invisible 'and that the 'vicar' of this(Jesus`s) Church is the Holy Spirit (as Jesus promised.) and the Holy Spirit not only authored but is the interpreter of Scripture.
So the gulf still exists between the Church visible and the Church invisible..

20 June 2014 at 11:37  
Blogger Len said...

Taken less than an hour to divide as to who is the church and who is the head of the church...
So much for unity!.

20 June 2014 at 11:40  
Blogger Uncle Brian said...

Just one point I’d like to add to Ars Hendrik’s summing-up at 11:28. There are many millions of Catholics out there who speak and act as though the Church sprang into being with Vatican II. Before that, there had been nothing but chaos. Also, of course, there are many millions of Catholics out there who speak and act as though the Church came to an end with Vatican II. Since then, there has been nothing but chaos. It looks to me as though both groups are making the same mistake.

20 June 2014 at 11:50  
Blogger Ars Hendrik said...

Yep, Uncle Brian.

Some forget that we are the Lord's flock - and it is an idiot sheep that thinks it is in charge of the shepherd...

20 June 2014 at 11:53  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

Uncle Brian

And there's a lot of Catholics sitting between the two groups in a state of bemusement, who love both the Latin Mass and also see the Spirit moving in a bouncy, exuberant Mass in the vernacular, who say the rosary and also love Taize chants, who (as I've said before) think Rorate Caeli and Mundabor are barking mad and a fair few NCR writers are barking mad in the other direction. But the ones in the middle of anything are rarely the ones who get quoted. The extreme ends are far better at the newsworthy soundbites.

20 June 2014 at 11:57  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

A "Catholic Traditionalist" is someone who knows what the Catholic church used to teach and still believes it. They generally reject the innovations of Vatican II. If they judge the Pope, they do so in the basis of received Catholic dogma that they consider both knowable and unchangeable. In a way this Pope is producing a very Protestant reaction among Traditionalists in that they are using private judgment to justify their conclusions about the Pope and the Magisterium. They wouldn't accept that characterization. But that is what they are doing.

Francis is a dangerous Pope in that he represents the ugly specter of modernism infiltrating the hierarchy. I can understand why Catholics who take seriously the claims of the RCC would find him threatening.

carl

20 June 2014 at 12:02  
Blogger Tom Mushroom said...

Ars & Sister Tiberia

As a fellow Roman Catholic, I say "spot on".

Plus, Rorate Caeli is just plain rude.

20 June 2014 at 12:13  
Blogger David Hussell said...

This is, as Sister Tiberia said @ 10.56, one Christian blessing another, that is what I see. Francis is an amazing man of God. The blessing comes of course from God, as we humans, priests, pastors or just plain Christians, merely call it down from Him.

As others have said the true Church is universal, known only to God, cutting across man-made denominational and administrative boundaries. It comprises those regenerated through the work of the Holy Spirit which we receive by Grace through our repentance, and faith in the salvation bought by the risen Christ who conquered sin and death.

I find disputes about Orders, valid and invalid denominations and such like legalistic , dry and sterile, the very antithesis of Christ's generous work. If that upsets anyone, well that is not my purpose but we do need to see through the outer shapes and forms to the substance of God's wonders freely given to all who submit to Him.

20 June 2014 at 12:19  
Blogger Tom Mushroom said...

Carl

I take the "claims of the RCC seriously" and I don't find him threatening.

His style can be, how can I put it?, unusual. But so far he has said or done nothing that departs from the Church's tradition or how it understands the Bible.

These "traditonalists" remind me of those 19C Catholics who, it was said, wanted an infallible definition every morning for breakfast.

20 June 2014 at 12:19  
Blogger Martin Marprelate said...

As a 450 year-old dissenter
www.marprelate.wordpress.com/about/
Martin has no interest in denominations and wishes to have fellowship with true believers in all churches, and with all churches where the word of God is faithfully preached and His ordinances faithfully observed. The question is, what is a Christian and what is a church?

Sister Tiberia has accidentally put her finger on part of the problem when she wrote: ' I see one baptised Christian asking God's blessing on another baptised Christian.' As soon as we define a Christian as someone who has been baptized, we are all at sea. 'He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me.' 'If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed.' (John 14:21; 8:31). This wretched sacramentalism is one of the worst enemies of true Christianity.

Many of us non-conformists were praying for Justin Welby and had high hopes of him as being some sort of evangelical. As least, we thought, he can't be as bad as Arch-druid Williams. But if Welby knows what the Gospel is, he is keeping jolly quiet about it.

Any time now, the C of E is going to have a service of blessing for homosexuals. Take a moment to read Jeremiah 23:17. This will be both an abomination towards God and a great act of wickedness towards homosexuals, who need to be brought to repentance, not confirmed in their sin. Surely that will be the moment for all Anglicans who love God to get out of the C of E and find a Bible-believing church. There are still some about. I can recommend most F.I.E.C. churches www.fiec.org.uk but there are others.

20 June 2014 at 12:23  
Blogger Ars Hendrik said...

'A "Catholic Traditionalist" is someone who knows what the Catholic church used to teach and still believes it.'

I understand your point but there is an inherent contradiction in it, for the first thing the Church teaches is obedience to the Church. As Cardinal Newman put it – 'Accept the whole, or reject the whole'. A Catholic is absolutely obedient to the Church because his whole faith depends upon the belief that it, uniquely, speaks the truth.

The majority of Catholics who objected to Vatican II were, I suspect, objecting to a change in the way things looked or sounded, rather than any change in the faith itself (there were none). There have been no changes to dogma.

This is the important point – style is not substance.

20 June 2014 at 12:31  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

Martin

Would it surprise you to know that you are in agreement with at least one Catholic archbishop?

Reposted from my blog

If Christ had become incarnate now
and were a thirty-year-old man today,
he would be here in the cathedral
and we wouldn't know him from the rest of you —
a thirty-year-old man, a peasant from Nazareth,
here in the cathedral like any peasant
from our countryside.
The Son of God made flesh would be here
and we wouldn't know him —
one completely like us.

How shameful to think that perhaps pagans,
people with no faith in Christ,
may be better than we
and nearer to God's reign.
Remember how Christ received a pagan centurion
and told him, "I'll go and cure your servant"?
The centurion, full of humility and confidence,
said, "No, Lord, I am not worthy that you go there.
Just say a word
and my servant will be cured."
Christ marveled, says the gospel, and he said,
"Truly, I have not found such faith in Israel."
I say:
Christ will also say of this church:
outside the limits of Catholicism
perhaps there is more faith,
more holiness.
So we must not extinguish the Spirit.
The Spirit is not the monopoly of a movement,
even of a Christian movement,
of a hierarchy, or priesthood, or religious congregation.
The Spirit is free,
and he wants men and women,
wherever they are,
to realize their vocation to find Christ,
who became flesh to save all human flesh.
Yes, to save all, dear brothers and sisters.
I know that some people come to the cathedral
who have even lost the faith and are non-Christians.
Let them be welcome.
And if this message is saying something to them,
I ask them to reflect in their inner consciousness,
for, like Christ, I can tell them:
the kingdom of God is not far from you,
God's kingdom is within your heart.
Seek it, and you will find it.

The Bible has a very meaningful expression:
The Spirit makes all things new.
We are those who grow old,
and we want everyone made to our aged pattern.
The Spirit is never old,
the Spirit is always young.


Archbishop Oscar Romero
From the chapter "Evangelizer of the People"
The Violence of Love
Sermons and writings, 17 December 1978, Gaudete Sunday
pp. 108-110

20 June 2014 at 12:32  
Blogger Ars Hendrik said...

Sorry, above point addressed to carl jacobs @ 12:02

20 June 2014 at 12:32  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

Óscar Arnulfo Romero y Galdámez (August 15, 1917 - March 24, 1980) was a prominent Roman Catholic priest in El Salvador during the 1960s and 1970s becoming Archbishop of San Salvador in 1977. After witnessing numerous violations of human rights, he began to speak out on behalf of the poor and the victims of repression. This led to numerous conflicts, both with the government in El Salvador and within the Catholic Church. After speaking out against U.S. military support for the government of El Salvador, and calling for soldiers to disobey orders to fire on innocent civilians, Archbishop Romero was shot dead while celebrating Mass at the small chapel of the cancer hospital where he lived. It is believed that those who organized his assassination were members of Salvadoran death squads, including two graduates of the School of the Americas.

20 June 2014 at 12:35  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Tom Mushroom

Not even so much as a century ago the RCC taught that I was a hell-bound heretic. That was received Catholic teaching for centuries and is still the formal teaching of Trent. It's not that they want a new infallible teaching got breakfast. It's that they reject how old infallible teachings have been stood on their heads and contradicted in the name of development.

And quite frankly they are right. I as a Protestant have a different motivation for saying that. But I agree with their analysis.

catl

20 June 2014 at 12:48  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Ars Hendrick

there is an inherent contradiction in it, for the first thing the Church teaches is obedience to the Church.

Hence my point about the Protestant nature of their reaction. They would respond that the current Magisterium has no power to change what has been established and received. They would assert they are being obedient to the Church. To do so, they must use their private judgment in the place of the current Magisterium's judgment. Suddenly they stand with Luther, but on a different authority.

Those who reject Vatican II do so on doctrinal grounds. That's why they are very careful to claim that Vatican II is not an ecumenical council.

carl

20 June 2014 at 12:56  
Blogger Martin Marprelate said...

Ars Hendrik wrote:
'I understand your point but there is an inherent contradiction in it, for the first thing the Church teaches is obedience to the Church. As Cardinal Newman put it – 'Accept the whole, or reject the whole'. A Catholic is absolutely obedient to the Church because his whole faith depends upon the belief that it, uniquely, speaks the truth.'

Your candour does you credit, but it also shows where the Church of Rome errs so disasterously.

Faith in your church cannot save you.
Faith in your baptism cannot save you.
Faith in the mass cannot save you.
Faith in the 'Pope' or in his pronouncements cannot save you.
Faith in confession to a 'Priest' cannot save you.

What can save you? 'Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved.' Be obedient to Him as your Lord, not to your church.

20 June 2014 at 13:01  
Blogger Len said...

That' Martin Marprelate' @ 20 June 2014 13:01 is the crux of the matter.The Church cannot save!.
It is Jesus Christ who saves...

The RCC assumes to do what only Christ can do.

20 June 2014 at 13:06  
Blogger Martin Marprelate said...

Thank you, Sister Tiberia, for the quotation from Oscar Romero. I am happy to receive truth from wherever I find it.

20 June 2014 at 13:08  
Blogger Tom Mushroom said...

Carl

I'm unaware that Trent teaches that you are a "hell bound heretic". Where does it say that?

I'm also unaware of "old infallible statements" that have been "stood on their heads". Which ones are they, please?

20 June 2014 at 13:08  
Blogger Tom Mushroom said...

Carl

I'm unaware that Trent teaches that you are a "hell bound heretic". Where does it say that?

I'm also unaware of "old infallible statements" that have been "stood on their heads". Which ones are they, please?

20 June 2014 at 13:08  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

I think that Carl may be thinking of this (somewhat pre Trent!)

"The Holy, Roman Church .... firmly believes, professes and preaches that all those who are outside the catholic church, not only pagans but also Jews or heretics and schismatics, cannot share in eternal life and will 'go into the everlasting fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels', unless they are joined to the Catholic Church before the end of their lives; that the unity of the ecclesiastical body is of such importance that only for those who abide in it do the Church's sacraments contribute to salvation and do fasts, almsgiving and other works of piety and practices of the christian militia produce eternal rewards; and that nobody can be saved, no matter how much he has given away in alms and even if he has shed his blood in the name of Christ, unless he has persevered in the bosom and the unity of the Catholic Church." [Pope Eugenius IV, A.D. 1431-1447, at the Oecumenical Union Council of Florence]

20 June 2014 at 13:10  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

Compare and contrast to this

15. The Church recognizes that in many ways she is linked with those who, being baptized, are honored with the name of Christian, though they do not profess the faith in its entirety or do not preserve unity of communion with the successor of Peter. (14*) For there are many who honor Sacred Scripture, taking it as a norm of belief and a pattern of life, and who show a sincere zeal. They lovingly believe in God the Father Almighty and in Christ, the Son of God and Saviour. (15*) They are consecrated by baptism, in which they are united with Christ. They also recognize and accept other sacraments within their own Churches or ecclesiastical communities. Many of them rejoice in the episcopate, celebrate the Holy Eucharist and cultivate devotion toward the Virgin Mother of God.(16*) They also share with us in prayer and other spiritual benefits. Likewise we can say that in some real way they are joined with us in the Holy Spirit, for to them too He gives His gifts and graces whereby He is operative among them with His sanctifying power. Some indeed He has strengthened to the extent of the shedding of their blood. In all of Christ's disciples the Spirit arouses the desire to be peacefully united, in the manner determined by Christ, as one flock under one shepherd, and He prompts them to pursue this end. (17*) Mother Church never ceases to pray, hope and work that this may come about. She exhorts her children to purification and renewal so that the sign of Christ may shine more brightly over the face of the earth.

16. Finally, those who have not yet received the Gospel are related in various ways to the people of God.(18*) In the first place we must recall the people to whom the testament and the promises were given and from whom Christ was born according to the flesh.(125) On account of their fathers this people remains most dear to God, for God does not repent of the gifts He makes nor of the calls He issues.(126) But the plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator. In the first place amongst these there are the Muslims, who, professing to hold the faith of Abraham, along with us adore the one and merciful God, who on the last day will judge mankind. Nor is God far distant from those who in shadows and images seek the unknown God, for it is He who gives to all men life and breath and all things,(127) and as Saviour wills that all men be saved.(128) Those also can attain to salvation who through no fault of their own do not know the Gospel of Christ or His Church, yet sincerely seek God and moved by grace strive by their deeds to do His will as it is known to them through the dictates of conscience.(19*) Nor does Divine Providence deny the helps necessary for salvation to those who, without blame on their part, have not yet arrived at an explicit knowledge of God and with His grace strive to live a good life. Whatever good or truth is found amongst them is looked upon by the Church as a preparation for the Gospel.(20*) She knows that it is given by Him who enlightens all men so that they may finally have life. But often men, deceived by the Evil One, have become vain in their reasonings and have exchanged the truth of God for a lie, serving the creature rather than the Creator.(129) Or some there are who, living and dying in this world without God, are exposed to final despair. Wherefore to promote the glory of God and procure the salvation of all of these, and mindful of the command of the Lord, "Preach the Gospel to every creature",(130) the Church fosters the missions with care and attention.


LUMEN GENTIUM
SOLEMNLY PROMULGATED BY HIS HOLINESS
POPE PAUL VI
ON NOVEMBER 21, 1964
Sections 15 and 16

20 June 2014 at 13:12  
Blogger Sidney Deane said...

All

Can someone tell me 3 key differences in terms of beliefs between catholics and protestants?

Assuming any of you actually know that is.

Thanks

20 June 2014 at 13:15  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Sidney Deane

1. Justification
2. Sacred Tradition
3. Marian dogmas
4. Papal & Magisterial authority

I can go deeper if you like.

carl

20 June 2014 at 13:21  
Blogger Sidney Deane said...

Carl

Yes please, just a bit mind you.

:)

20 June 2014 at 13:23  
Blogger Uncle Brian said...

carl jacobs at 12:48

And quite frankly they are right.

But that wouldn't mean that they are now of the elect, would it?

20 June 2014 at 13:23  
Blogger Len said...

Catholics belief that their Church saves them(they will never admit it but that is what they believe)they obtain 'salvation' through increments of grace administered through their religious system)so Catholics without their religious system are ' sunk'(well and truly)Catholicism is a TO DO religion.

Christians believe that Christ has done everything necessary for salvation and that we have to have faith in Christ and what HE HAS DONE.

20 June 2014 at 13:27  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

Len, any Catholic I know would say that Jesus Christ saves us, and that his Church and the Sacraments are there to help us when we (in our human fallibility) fall short of the perfect love that He calls us to.

Of course, I don't know any of the writers from Rorate Caeli, and they would probably class every Catholic I know as a heretic based on what I've just said :)

20 June 2014 at 13:31  
Blogger Len said...

Sister Tibs if a Catholic leaves the RCC are they still saved?.

20 June 2014 at 13:33  
Blogger Cressida de Nova said...

I think this blessing was sprung on the Pope without him being aware this was going to happen.

He could hardly object or refuse it in the circumstances. I see it as more of a defiant act of the pretender The Archbishop Of Canterbury attempting to assert himself as an equal. It was as insulting an act as was the Queen of England's presenting the Pope with some cabbages or whatever from her garden as a gift.

I would like put this hypothetical question to the "Catholics" here. If for some reason you could not have access to a priest ever again would you receive the eucharist from a Protestant clergyman?

20 June 2014 at 13:34  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Tom Mushroom

I'm unaware that Trent teaches that you are a "hell bound heretic". Where does it say that?

In the canons on Justification. OK technically those anathemas only apply to Roman Catholics who hold to the doctrines of the Reformation. I would already be condemned by EENS so strictly constructed Trent doesn't apply to me. But since Trent explicitly and repeatedly anathematizes the Gospel, I tend not to make that distinction.
EENS would be the classic example of an old infallible teaching that has been turned on its head. There is no historical doubt about what the delegates to Trent thought. Or what was taught even as late as the middle of the 20th century. That's why there was a Father Feeney. And that is what Catholic traditionalists know as well.

car

20 June 2014 at 13:34  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

Cressida, it's an interesting one, and I would answer it this way. When after one of my miscarriages I was in danger of death (blood loss) and I asked the hospital for a Catholic chaplain, they were unable to get one. They sent me the Church of England vicar who stayed with me, and prayed with me for a long time during that terrible night.

I don't know how much danger I was actually in. But had I indeed died that night, I do not believe that God would have based my final salvation purely upon the presence or absence of a Catholic priest who failed to answer his telephone. And if that is heresy, so be it.

20 June 2014 at 13:38  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Uncle Brian

They are right that the modern RCC has changed infallibly defined doctrine.

carl

20 June 2014 at 13:40  
Blogger Irene's Daughter said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

20 June 2014 at 13:43  
Blogger Irene's Daughter said...

I admit to being puzzled, and ecclesiastical history is not my thing, but I have to ask. When did blessing someone (verb) become ‘a blessing’ (noun) with rules about who should and should not declare it? So, being of a literal bent, I went to Strong’s and Young’s concordances to find out just what the word ‘bless’ actually means. There are three words translated as bless and they are all verbs.

In the Old Testament two Hebrew/Aramaic words are translated as ‘bless’ in English.
1. The literal meaning of ‘Barak’ is to kneel. When man blessses or ‘baraks’ God he is kneeling in worship. When God ‘baraks’ us He is coming down to our level. He is ‘God with us.’
2. ‘Ashar’ and its derivatives mean ‘be straight’, as in honest, and implies receiving the happiness that comes from being honest.

In the New Testament there is one word and its derivatives - ‘eulogeo’ - from which we get the word eulogy. It means to ‘speak well of’.

So which meaning of the word was Justin Welby applying when he ‘blessed’ the Pope?
Was he ‘worshipping’ the Pope?
Was he saying ‘Francis, live honestly and prosper.’?
Or was He speaking well of Francis, telling him how wonderful he thinks he is?
Or none of the above?

To my mind what that picture is showing is just pompous, man exalting vanity. To bless God is an act of worship. To bless another man is simply to wish them well. And when we say ‘God bless you’ we are asking Him to be with whoever is ‘you’. And I can find nothing in Scripture which bars any of us from blessing God or others because we do not have the right job. To bless someone is simply a shorthand way of expressing what is in our hearts concerning them.

This picture is evidence of what happens when religion takes the place of walking by faith. Religion always has rules which compel its adherents to walk by sight. And ‘a blessing’ (noun) is little more than a mantra as soon as it becomes subject to manmade rules.

20 June 2014 at 13:43  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Sidney Deane

Yes please, just a bit mind you.

I get the idea that I just stumbled into a British double entendre. I swear this weblog would be much easier if the English would learn to speak English.

carl

20 June 2014 at 13:45  
Blogger Irene's Daughter said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

20 June 2014 at 13:46  
Blogger Cressida de Nova said...


SISTER TIBS.

You did not answer the question. Catholics are not monsters who believe that the only goodness in the world comes from Catholicism and indeed the Protestant vicar who prayed with you may be a very holy man. You are ducking and weaving. If he blessed the host and offered it to you at your death, would you receive it?

20 June 2014 at 13:58  
Blogger Martin Marprelate said...

Ah, Sister T!
You were doing so well; now you've spoiled it by quoting all that nonsense from your 'Pope.'

To tell Moslems (or any other non-Christians) that they are in some way in the kingdom of God, or that their god is somehow the same as the true God is untrue, and desperately unhelpful to lost sinners. We need to point them to Christ!

'Come, ye sinners, poor and wretched,
Weak and wounded, sick and sore;
Jesus ready stands to save you,
Full of pity joined with power.
He is able,
He is willing, doubt no more!

Come , ye needy, come and welcome,
God's free bounty glorify!
True belief and true repentance,
Every grace that brings us nigh,
Without money,
Come to Jesus Christ and buy!

Let not conscience make you linger,
Nor of fitness fondly dream.
All the fitness He requireth
Is to feel your need of Him.
This He gives you;
'Tis the Spirit's rising beam.

Come, ye weary, heavy-laden,
Bruised and battered by the Fall;
If you tarry 'til you're better
You will never come at all.
Not the righteous-
Sinners Jesus came to call!

Lo! the incarnate God, ascended,
Pleads the merits of His blood;
Venture on Him, venture wholly,
Let no other trust intrude;
None but Jesus
can do helpless sinners good!'


Joseph Hart (1712-68).

20 June 2014 at 13:59  
Blogger Sidney Deane said...

Carl

Eh?

I meant please expand, but briefly.

I don't want chapter and verse, just a summary.

Thanks

20 June 2014 at 14:00  
Blogger Uncle Brian said...

Len said...

Sister Tibs if a Catholic leaves the RCC are they still saved?.

20 June 2014 13:33


Len, I don't know whether Sister Tibs's answer will be the same as mine, but it's my understanding that no one can ever know whether they're saved or not. The verb "to know" can be stretched to cover a wide range of meanings, but not quite that far. That would be stretching it beyond breaking point.

20 June 2014 at 14:01  
Blogger Tom Mushroom said...

Carl

Fr Feeney was bonkers, not, I hope, using too unkind a word.

20 June 2014 at 14:02  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Sidney Deane

Sorry about that. :) Totally my mistake. I misinterpreted the smiley face.

carl

20 June 2014 at 14:05  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

Uncle Brian

You took the words out of my mouth :)

20 June 2014 at 14:16  
Blogger David Hussell said...

Martin Marprelate @ 12.23

Many on us traditional protestant Anglicans were also hoping that we would see an A of C who knew and preached the gospel. We are now disappointed as if he knows it, he is keeping it shut away, which is the opposite of what we are asked to do. He will do some good, but he is essentially an establishment man, giving them some of what they seek, in a softly softly sort of way.

There are a growing number of us traditional, orthodox, reformed Anglicans many, such as myself, members of Reform, who affirm the original articles of faith, the 39 Articles, and associated documents including the Prayer Book, all reflecting the Scriptures. Our approach to same sex matters reflects the timeless advice of the Bible as does the Christian tradition as well as the very recent evidence of science and social science. We are not following fashionable politically led trends which will, in the fulness of history, be shown to be dead ends.

We are growing, planting new churches, with strong family and young persons membership whereas the bulk of the C of E , which is liberal, is shrinking. The future C of E will be smaller, more protestant and more evangelical traditional. The rapidly growing traditional protestant Anglicans of the global south,including Australia, have effectively, severed with Canterbury and are in strong association with us through GAFCON.They cannot wait for ever for a gospel preaching A of C , as their Churches are growing rapidly and face many pressures including Islam and US/UK /EU imperialism in the form of grants with strings attached to their "Human Rights" agenda, essentially espousing sexual liberalism.

Reformed protestant Anglicanism marches on globally as well as here in England following the Scriptures, all ignored by the liberal media of course.

20 June 2014 at 14:17  
Blogger Ars Hendrik said...

Martin @ 13:01

Hi Martin

Yes, I would agree with you – but all of the things that you mention (the Church, baptism, the Mass, the Pope, Confession and the other Sacraments, even the Bible itself) are all the direct gifts of Christ Himself, preserved and contained within the Catholic Church (and, granted, its various spin-offs). It is how God, through the Holy Spirit, is manifest in the world. It is how you know about Christ and His promise of salvation

Take all of this history and authority away and you are, quite literally, just left with voices in your head.


carl jacobs @ 12:56

Not sure I entirely understand the point you made here – probably my fault as it is Friday afternoon!

20 June 2014 at 14:22  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

Cressida

I'm sorry you think I was dodging the question. I was hoping that my illustration of a situation where through no fault of my own, the Catholic sacrament applicable (Extreme Unction or whatever they call it these days) was not available, that I would accept what comfort, consolation and spiritual help was available from any other Christian.

In a situation where no Catholic priest was ever available to me again, would I consider the bread blessed by a Protestant clergyman to be identical to the Sacred Host? No. We do not share the same belief in the Real Presence, although I understand some High Anglicans do have this belief. Would I take the bread anyway? Probably. And would ask God in my prayers that as the Church states, He has bound Grace to His Sacraments, but He is not bound by them, my hope that he would somehow accept my intention to make a spiritual Communion since I could not make a physical one..

Does that make it clearer?

20 June 2014 at 14:22  
Blogger Cressida de Nova said...

My answer to Len's question would be it depends on the circumstances.Catholicism is not black and white.That is why it is possible for atheists to be saved and also non Christians. It all depends on the individual circumstances.
Salvation and fear of hell should not be the raison d'etre of one's life. Living and knowing the truth should be, as demonstrated by the example of Christ .

20 June 2014 at 14:25  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Sidney Deane

Justification refers to how we become righteous before God. The Protestant holds to imputed righteousness. The righteousness of Christ is imputed to us by grace and is therefore alien to us. We didn't earn it. Christ earned it for us. The RC holds to forensic righteousness. That means a man is given grace to perform works that move him toward righteousness. At the judgment, God will forensically examine a man to see if he is righteous. A RC therefore sees righteousness as intrinsic.

RCs believe that Sacred Tradition is the oral (I.e. not written down) teachings of Christ and the Apostles. This deposit remains within the Magisterium of the RCC and is the equivalent of Scripture in terms of authority. Protestants reject Sacred Tradition as a gnostic superstition.

The Marian Dogmas are the three defined infallible teachings of Mary. Ever virgin. Sinless. Assumed into heaven. It is actually a much broader area of disagreement however. Mary assumes a very prominent place in RCism. A protestant sees the RCC as having turned her into a functional fourth member of the Godhead. This subject would require a lot more development.

The Magisterium (Pope and Bishops together) is the teaching authority of the RCC. It claims that only the Magisterium has the ability to rightly understand Scripture. Not least because only it possesses Sacred Tradition. It claims the ability to make doctrinally infallible statements that bind the conscience of the believer. Protestants invest this authority in Scripture and not the church hierarchy.

That is a very brief thumbnail sketch. Understand I am a Protestant so I have my biases. I tried to be objective.

carl

20 June 2014 at 14:29  
Blogger Martin Marprelate said...

David,
I'm aware of the great work being done by Reform and the evangelical Anglican churches. There is a fine one near where I live. You will not make an Anglican out of Martin Marprelate, but you do have his prayers.

You do need to get out of the C of E as is. The trumpet is sounding an uncertain note and you will do better outside; whether you remain Episcopalian or become independent, God's word to you is '"Come out from among them and be separate" says the Lord. "Do not touch what is unclean and I will receive you"'

May God give you wisdom and courage in these matters.

20 June 2014 at 14:35  
Blogger Cressida de Nova said...

Sister Tibs

I don't understand what you mean by saying that God is not bound by His Sacraments.Could you give an example.The situation you have used is not a pertinent or acceptable example.. By accepting bread or a host not consecrated, you know in advance it is only symbolic and meaningless so why would you do that..Isn't it a type of mockery of the truth.? It shocks me to think you could do that.That is how I see it.I really am not being critical of you personally because you are not an aggressive person and your presence on this blog is very welcome after the hardhitters who frequent here. However I think
you and a lot of Catholics including priests Bishops and even Cardinals do not really believe in transubstantiation .
This is evident by allowing the hand to be used and also by allowing communion to be distributed by deacons nuns or whoever....so I supposeyou cannot blame Catholics when this behaviour is endorsed by their leadership..Catholics have got to make a stand and realise that Catholicism by its nature cannot include Protestant belief and values. We need not be at war , we can even be friends(to a point) but we must remain autonomous in our difference and they must learn to respect or at least try to understan our belief.

20 June 2014 at 14:58  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

"Pope Francis is more Anglican than many believe, or would find it possible to admit."

'Anglican' is the sense of attempting to steer a middle course between the application of Catholic truth in the modern world?

Ask what message Francis was sending by this picture? Remember, he is a Jesuit and a 'showman' to boot. Much of what he says and does is riddled with ambiguity. One thing is clear, he wants to break down barriers and loosen central control in the Church. Can he do this without changing core doctrine? Jack suspects that this will prove impossible.

The Catholic Church has always had theological and teaching differences. There have been many 'protesters' in the Church. And quite a few Popes have abused their position.

The key feature is that doctrinal differences have been resolved at Ecumenical Councils. Vatican II was not such a meeting. There were no obvious theological issues to be resolved. It gathered to adapt the approach of the Church's mission to the realities of the modern age. The problem is not so much the Council's documents but this thing called "The Spirit of Vatican II" which has permitted so much heterodoxy.

As Jack sees it, under Francis this heterodoxy is receiving oxygen, as it did under all the post Vatican II Popes until Benedict addressed it.

20 June 2014 at 15:02  
Blogger David Hussell said...

Martin Marprelate @ 14.35

Thank you.

20 June 2014 at 15:10  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Len
"Sister Tibs if a Catholic leaves the RCC are they still saved?"

Here's the formal answer from the Catechism Church:

"Basing itself on Scripture and Tradition, the Council teaches that the Church, a pilgrim now on earth, is necessary for salvation: the one Christ is the mediator and the way of salvation; he is present to us in his body which is the Church. He himself explicitly asserted the necessity of faith and baptism, and thereby affirmed at the same time the necessity of the Church which men enter through baptism as through a door.

Hence they could not be saved who, knowing that the Catholic Church was founded as necessary by God through Christ, would refuse either to enter it or to remain in it."

(CCC 846)

20 June 2014 at 15:13  
Blogger Ars Hendrik said...

Happy Jack @ 15:13

Which , HJ, seems to me to be the epitome of free choice.

Those who have not heard can still be saved if, by their conscience, they follow Natural Law.

Those who have heard but reject the Church have only themselves to blame, for their sin is the sin of pride.

20 June 2014 at 15:21  
Blogger David Hussell said...

Happy Jack @ 15.02

Anglicanism as "the middle way" or Via Media is certainly not about steering between Catholicism and the modern world.
Defining it is a big task, but briefly, it can really only be understood in the context of the post-reformation situation where a way was sought to create a national Church that would encompass those with very traditional Catholic derived beliefs and those who saw the Bible as the guide, and all shades and combinations in between.

It's exponent was my favourite C of E theologian Richard Hooker, who some attribute with creating classical Anglicanism. I put great store by his wisdom and continue to study him. He saw truth regarding God's guidance as flowing from Scripture, Tradition and Reason, with Scripture as the tie-breaker in the unlikely event of conflict. That mixture made the C of E distinct from the reformed protestants of the continental traditions. But that is only an exceedingly crude summary.

The Via Media has been expressed as a "generous orthodoxy" by A of C, Ramsey, I think, which is a useful summary in a phrase. It allowed for a balance between Anglo-Catholicism, Liberalism and Evangelicals. All worked reasonably well until the last few decades but that's another story. I hope that helps. Stay happy !

20 June 2014 at 15:28  
Blogger Uncle Brian said...

David Hussell

If His Grace will allow me to go off topic for a moment, and since you once asked me for geographical details about the place I live. I have a little story to tell you. Yesterday evening, after dinner, I did something I’d never done before in my long life: I killed a snake. It’s a species known locally as casco de burro, literally ”donkey’s hoof”. It’s very small, not much more than a half-metre long, say about two feet, and no thicker than a cigarette, if that. It owes its name to its habit of rolling itself up into a coil and living for a long time in the hollow of a horse’s (or donkey’s) hoof, like a coiled spring inside a watch case. But if for any reason it should ever be prompted to turn against its unknowing host, its poison (so I’m told) can deliver instant death.


20 June 2014 at 15:55  
Blogger Dauphin said...

Cranmer,

Don't accuse the Pope of being a heretic unless you have better evidence than a perfectly ambiguous gesture like this.

20 June 2014 at 16:34  
Blogger David Hussell said...

Uncle Brian @ 15.55

With His Grace's longstanding toleration, that's a very interesting snippet from the far east of a fascinating, huge country, so thank you. Most of us hear little about Brazil, at the level of everyday life anyway.
How terrifying for the poor donkey. I am acquainted a little with the beasts as at one time my entrepreneurial brother in Wales bought them by the boat load from Ireland, at the docks on the Irish side, selling them onto the "pony paddocks" of the Home Counties at a nice little profit. They are sweet, silly and stubborn creatures. I rather like them.

Killing snakes was one of my boyhood experiences, learnt from my father. The best way was to chop them in two with a sharp downward spade movement, whilst wearing wellington boots for protection. Adders infested the bracken on the sides of the mountains all around my Welsh village home, so they were a constant and poisonous presence, and I soon learnt to fear and loathe them. Attacks on humans did occur, and they could kill the old, the weak or very young, especially in spring when after hibernation their poison sacks are full. I also encounter them nowadays on the heaths of rural Suffolk here, around The Brecks, again living in fern. The thing is not to step on the blighters, but allow them to escape by stamping on the ground and warning them. I have a strong dislike of snakes as in "avoid if possible or kill if necessary" I will confess.

I would not enjoy living in a tropical or equatorial country as I don't like the steamy heat or the animals much, preferring mid-latitudes and higher latitudes.

Thanks for the snippet.

20 June 2014 at 16:44  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

HJ

Hence they could not be saved who, knowing that the Catholic Church was founded as necessary by God through Christ, would refuse either to enter it or to remain in it.

But the word here is "know"

If they have left in the profound belief that this is not correct, possibly based on the fact that the behaviour of certain priests they have known has left them in doubt that God has anything to do with the Catholic Church as it is now (a bowdlerised form of what an Irish friend of mine said when she left) - then how does God judge them? Whose fault is their loss of faith - given we are told also that faith is a gift?

We don't know. It's as simple as that. We trust them to God's mercy, and also ask for mercy on those priests (and others) who were instrumental in destroying their faith, and pray that God will find them a way back to Him, through the Church, or by another route.

20 June 2014 at 17:10  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

David H
"'Anglican' is the sense of attempting to steer a middle course between the application of Catholic truth in the modern world?"

That's why Jack posed this as a question. There can be no doctrinal shift in established Catholic thinking about salvation through the Catholic Church. How to evangelise and rescue people from the ills of the modern age is the question. What to do about contraception, divorce and remarriage, abortion and the illegitimate expression of human sexuality?

Anglicanism as a theological via media balancing Anglo-Catholicism, Liberalism and Evangelicals (in all their differences), just would not be, well, Roman Catholic. Not even Francis would go that far.

The Church teaches: "all salvation comes from Christ the Head" But that isn't the end of it. How is one saved? What are the means through which salvation is offered through Christ? This is where the differences lie.

When speaking of salvation, Jesus Himself associated salvation with baptism, confession, and the Eucharist. Catholics believe these sacraments, the channels of saving grace, are administered by the Church and that a validly ordained priest is necessary for this - "through the Church which is his Body."

Since the sacraments are ordinary the means Christ offers the grace necessary for salvation, and the Catholic Church was established by Christ to do this, it is follows that salvation comes through the Catholic Church and its validly ordained ministers.

There can be no 'via media' on this one. We can squabble all we like about it, and no doubt will, but it is, and remains unchanging Roman Catholic dogma.

20 June 2014 at 17:13  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

Cressida, read the Catechism on the salvation of unbaptised infants. I think that's where the quote comes from.

"symbolic and meaningless" - this is where we differ. Symbolic only, yes, but the two words are mutually exclusive. I take bread with my fellow Christian without it altering in any way my belief in the Real Presence in the consecrated Host, and remember the sacrifice of Christ on Calvary in this symbol. It has immense meaning, but it is not the sacrament of Holy Communion as a Catholic understands it.

"you and a lot of Catholics including priests Bishops and even Cardinals do not really believe in transubstantiation"

This I refute utterly, and if I didn't know you well, I would actually find offensive. I'm going to leave the blog now for an hour or two and calm down :) See you all later.

20 June 2014 at 17:15  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Sister Tiberia, Happy Jack wouldn't fundamentally disagree.

Faith is a gift - offered to all by grace and once the offer is accepted it has to be tendered and cared for. At least that is what Jack was taught.

To leave the Church because of the actions of a minority of sinful clerics suggests your friend was not properly instructed in her faith to begin with - or she paid insufficient attention.

In these circumstances, "Who is Jack to judge?" Her personal culpability and those of others outside the Church, for whatever reason, is, as you say, a matter for God.

20 June 2014 at 17:23  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Sister Tiberia
"I take bread with my fellow Christian without it altering in any way my belief in the Real Presence in the consecrated Host, and remember the sacrifice of Christ on Calvary in this symbol."

May Happy Jack enquire what your parish priest has to say about that practice?

20 June 2014 at 17:30  
Blogger Len said...

So is the RCC the only way to heaven as some seem to be claiming?.
Well... not according to the Word of God.(might come as a shock to some!)
Jesus said;"I AM the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture." (John 10:9)

Can we know we are saved (outside of the RCC?). Seems we can!,

"In Him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it,to the praise of his glory."(Ephesians 13:14)(please note this is NOT when an infant is sprinkled with water it is when when you HEARD the word and BELIEVED in Him)

One should be clear as to whether they belong to 'the church' or to Christ(the two are not mutually inclusive) and some churchgoers do and some do not not belong to Christ.

It is only by spiritual union with Christ that we gain eternal life because eternal Life is in Him not the Church..

20 June 2014 at 17:33  
Blogger Cressida de Nova said...

Yes I agree with Tibs 17:10

Many have suffered at the hands of the clergy and have left..It is a terrible thing to turn someone away from God.Suitability of candidates for the priesthood has to be thoroughly investigated.

I am sorry for offending you Tibs but look at it this way. If you really believed that the host contained the presence of Christ. This would be the most momentous thing that could ever happen to you in your whole life.

Something of this magnitude would be treated with the utmost care devotion and humility. Well.it is not! ...

.The last Mass I attended not so long ago in a Cathedral celebrated by a Cardinal,a woman in very high heels in a short skirt was teetering around with Chalice in hand distributing Holy Communion.I refuse to be complicit in this sacrilegious behaviour... ever.

I know of Bishops particularly those who have suffered under Communist regimes who share my opinion.It is disgraceful.

20 June 2014 at 18:02  
Blogger David Hussell said...

Happy Jack @ 17.13

You may have misunderstood what I was doing. I am not attempting to say what Catholicism says, or should say, at all, in relation to these matters, as I leave that to you. I was merely explaining, in very few words, what the Anglican Via Media sets out to do, as it is not what you thought it was.

20 June 2014 at 18:04  
Blogger David Hussell said...

Len @ 17.33

Quite !

20 June 2014 at 18:06  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

Hmmm…

One suggests that it’s been a few decades since a stiletto would have been drawn on any Archbishop of Canterbury who imposed himself on a pope like that. After all, there’s only so much you can do these days with the world’s press in attendance. So don’t read too deeply into it.

However, it might lead to a statement about “a greater understanding between Holy Mother Church and her renegade Anglican son” or some such, which can be quietly filed away when Welby has gone home. But forget any notion that the pope alone, past, present or future IS the Roman Catholic Church. That would be silly.

20 June 2014 at 18:21  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

But David H, Happy Jack does know what the Anglican means and was simply attempting to argue this cannot be applied to Pope Francis' receiving a blessing from the ABC as was suggested.

Len, its entirely up to you what you believe. However, you clearly didn't read what Jack wrote - as usual.

Jack will repeat it:

The Church teaches: "all salvation comes from Christ the Head"

But that isn't the end of it. How is one saved? What are the means through which salvation is offered through Christ? This is where the differences lie.

When speaking of salvation, Jesus Himself associated salvation with baptism, confession, and the Eucharist.

Catholics believe these sacraments, the channels of saving grace, are administered by the Church and that a validly ordained priest is necessary for this - "through the Church which is his Body."

We disagree - fine. Scripture can be quoted endlessly about this. You've made up your mind. Do stop "bearing false witness" against Christ's Body.

And you yourself have repeatedly stated you don't subscribe to the Church of England as a visible body. Its "religion" after all.

20 June 2014 at 18:38  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

“You, ingleesh. You come when the Holy Father call you, and you go when he wave you away. You keepa da distance at all time. Comprehende ?”

20 June 2014 at 18:38  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Anglican 'via media' ...

20 June 2014 at 18:39  
Blogger Anglican said...

If I may join the discussion about the Eucharist…..I believe in the Real Presence – I cannot understand why anyone reading the synoptic gospel accounts of the Last Supper, Paul’s account of how he received the teaching in 1 Corinthians 11, and John Ch. 6 could think anything else (that’s alienated half of you).
On the other hand, transubstantiation is merely a theory about how it ‘works’, based on some philosophical concepts of Aristotle. Why do you have to have a theory? We don’t have one about how the resurrection happened, and there are other theories, such as consubstantiation. If you want a theory, perhaps transubstantiation is the best one – I don’t know – but why is there a need for any theory about how it works, and make it compulsory to believe in it? It is a Divine Mystery. The Eastern Orthodox seem to be wiser than their Roman fellow Christians – they believe in the Real Presence, but not in a particular theory about it. Having alienated the other half of you I’d better stop.

20 June 2014 at 18:45  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...


One wonders if Welby had thought to ask his holiness about lifting the divine curse on the English national football team which, other than the glorious year of 1966, seems to have been in place since Tudor times...

20 June 2014 at 18:48  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Tom Mushroom

Fr Feeney wasn't bonkers. He was more like the little boy in the story - the one who said the Emperor had no clothes. I am more than happy to agree with you that he was wrong - but only if you stipulate that his error reveals a fundamental change in RC dogma.

carl

20 June 2014 at 18:53  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

But Inspector

Re: The English Soccer team

The Americans are still there and the Spanish have been knocked out. So much good has already happened.

carl

20 June 2014 at 18:55  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Carl, Fr Feeney failed to understand Church's reformulation of its teaching.

"Outside the Church there is no salvation" (Extra ecclesiam nulla salus), is still the Church's doctrinal position.

It has been formulated by various Church Fathers and Church Councils. To understand it as an isolated formulation of Church teaching is mistaken.

One must look at the historical context within which it was written: why it was written, what was going on in the Church at the time, who the intended audience was. One must also ask how the magisterium of the Church understands its own teaching. Failure to do this and simply treat any formulation as a stand-alone teaching runs the risk of misunderstanding it.

The Church recognised its teaching about the necessity of the Catholic Church for salvation had been widely misunderstood, so "re-formulated" it in a positive way.

Here's what the Catechism of the Catholic Church says: "How are we to understand this affirmation, often repeated by the Church Fathers? Reformulated positively, it means that all salvation comes from Christ the Head through the Church which is his Body"
(CCC 846).

In keeping with the spirit of ecumenism, this is a positive reformulation and is less harsh than negative formulations.

In what way has the substance of the doctrine changed?

20 June 2014 at 19:19  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

As for American (you claim the whole continent now?) Football (please note) Team, let's see how they fare against a good Catholic country on Sunday. Then there's the might of the Germans next Thursday. Win either of those and they'll earn Jack's respect.

20 June 2014 at 19:42  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Puseyism redux!

20 June 2014 at 20:05  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Dear Happy Jack, you do begin to worry me dear heart...

20 June 2014 at 20:07  
Blogger Sister Julian said...

I would far rather receive the Mass from a Roman priest rather than from many Anglican vicars, many of whom these days are certainly not priests and most definitely I would not want to receive from a woman priest, such as Father Debbie! Sorry if this opens a new can of worms pilgrims, but if receiving the sacrament is to be the important act I believe it to be then it must be from someone who truly believes in the mystery of it. If I were in extremis then I may have no choice but to pray that God would sanctify the sacrament despite who was delivering it.

20 June 2014 at 20:17  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Mrs Proudie, Happy Jack is worrying you? You must not fret, my dear woman. Just send over some hobnobs.

20 June 2014 at 20:25  
Blogger dav phi said...

I think the Archbishop is saying "Did you know there's a hole in the roof, and that's a puddle your standing in....?"

20 June 2014 at 20:28  
Blogger dav phi said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

20 June 2014 at 20:28  
Blogger dav phi said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

20 June 2014 at 20:28  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

I say Sister Julian, “Father Debbie” isn’t that transsexual priest the Inspector read about on Pink News the other day ? Thought the buggers were making it up.

By the way chaps, the Inspector can report said blog, a rival to Cranmer’s, no less, has banned all comments of late. One presumes the advertisers have had enough of displaying their wares on a shockingly anti Christian hate site. One can only imagine the grief these now silenced thug commentators are feeling right now.

Here’s to the next world cup, what ! Sunny Qatar isn’t it, or has some other ridiculous country managed to bribe the delegates to get in before in 2018. With so much corruption in the world, one really does lose track you know...


20 June 2014 at 20:37  
Blogger William Lewis said...

It's a funny old world and no mistake. Has Lambeth Palace ordered a fresh set of towels for any Catholics now thinking of swimming the Tiber? The door is clearly open now that the AoC has given the Pope his blessing. :)

20 June 2014 at 21:04  
Blogger David Hussell said...

Football now seems to be vying with theological dispute for the column inches of this blog, an observation I offer without making any value judgements regarding the relative "worth" of the subject matters - heaven forbid ! Whoops - hope that doesn't trigger a Protestant vs Catholic dispute about "heaven".

Must get another beer from the barn, that'll be simpler.

20 June 2014 at 21:07  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Dear William Lewis, I am not sure we should be encouraging people to cross the Tiber, but if they do I hope they wear respectable flannel or black bombazine...both have the advantage of complete discretion and the certainty of dragging the wearer down into the depths...rather a neat solution al round. As for you Happy Jack, I am not so sure you deserve hobnobs with your Jesuitical fandangos, so instead I will send you a copy of Mr Slope's latest tract entitled, 'Brace Yourself for a Second Coming.' Perhaps you have had one of those already?

20 June 2014 at 21:38  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Dear David Hussell, there is something rather heavenly about Luis Suarez, don't you think?

20 June 2014 at 21:40  
Blogger David Hussell said...

Luis Suarez - "heavenly" you suggest Mrs Proudie ?

Dear me, what are you trying to get me into, one wonders. Well thank you indeed, Mrs Proudie, I am sure, for your kind offer to comment on such matters, but the unconsidered response from Suffolk, is wait for it, now ......

"No comment" --- "phew"

Largely because I haven't a bloody clue what you are talking about !

My "games" of youth and middle age were neither football or rugby but, unconventionally, canoeing and longbow archery, with a spot of pot holing and mountaineering thrown in- sorry to disappoint, but all very useful for slipping into creeks and inlets at night, and silently despatching a few enemies with a few well placed arrows, before paddling silently away to live to fight for another day. I still hanker after a few well planted arrows - the dull thud when it hits the target is quietly intoxicating and deeply satisfying !

Greeting to the Lord Bishop, and I good night Mrs Proudie.

20 June 2014 at 22:13  
Blogger Tom Mushroom said...

Carl

I second what Happy Jack said at 19.19 in answer to your question to me.

20 June 2014 at 22:19  
Blogger Tom Mushroom said...

Carl

I second what Happy Jack said at 19.19 in answer to your question to me.

20 June 2014 at 22:20  
Blogger Albert said...

Is Pope Francis humbly acknowledging the episcopal ministry of Archbishop Justin and affirming the validity of Anglican Holy Orders? Is he recognising that we are neither heretics (as it still says in Westminster Cathedral) nor 'separated brethren', but part of the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church? It appears so.

No, he is simply embodying Catholic teaching that God gives grace even through invalid orders.

For many Roman Catholic traditionalists, this is one hell of an ecumenical mess, sending out confusing messages about the Faith, the (Roman) Catholic Church

In the light of the above, that charge would seem to have some merit. Cradle Catholics don't seem to get the way their gestures are (mis)understood. Here is the Holy Father responding to clear and non innovative Catholic teaching, and suddenly he's recognizing Anglican orders. It's a non sequitur.

20 June 2014 at 22:33  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Jack

reformulation of its teaching

Is that what they are calling it these days.

carl

20 June 2014 at 23:26  
Blogger Martin Marprelate said...

Ars Hendrik at 14-22
Sorry to be so late on this. I missed it. You wrote:

Yes, I would agree with you – but all of the things that you mention (the Church, baptism, the Mass, the Pope, Confession and the other Sacraments, even the Bible itself) are all the direct gifts of Christ Himself, preserved and contained within the Catholic Church (and, granted, its various spin-offs). It is how God, through the Holy Spirit, is manifest in the world. It is how you know about Christ and His promise of salvation
your problem is that you, and the Church of Rome, have placed the Bible behind your 'Pope' and your sacraments, and as a result you have defaced baptism and the Lord's Supper, invented a load of other paraphanalia and placed the word of God under your tradition (Mark 7:7, 9).

The Church does not own the word of God; it stands under it and is judged by it, and by it alone (2 Tim. 3:16-17).

Take all of this history and authority away and you are, quite literally, just left with voices in your head.

History I can live with; man-made traditions and authority I reject. I find no Popes, Cardinals, Archbishops, Monseigneurs in the Bible, and no priests other than the Jewish kind. There was a multiplicity of 'bishops' in the church at Philippi and, of course, they married (1 Tim. 3:20).

The noise in your head is the clash between your traditions and the Bible.

20 June 2014 at 23:29  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Tom Mushroom

Yes, I am sure you do second Jack's post. Unfortunately that collection of disingenuous dissembling does not change the historical facts. Fr Feeney saw this. He knew the definition of EENS had been radically changed and he understood the implications.

And so do I.

carl

20 June 2014 at 23:30  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

That's it Carl. "Reformulated positively" is what the Catechism calls it.

You still stuck in 1302 - a long time ago now and the Church wasn't quite so ecumenical back then.

20 June 2014 at 23:40  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Gentle musings dear David Hussell, gentle musings..my Lord the Bishop is well and sends his benediction...

20 June 2014 at 23:49  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Jack

Reformulated positively

By which you mean 'not X' was suddenly declared to be 'X' and, oh btw, 'not X' and 'X' had the same value all along. No, do NOT pay attention to the man behind the curtain. Do Not ...

the Church wasn't quite so ecumenical back then.

To say the least. It wasn't so ecumenical in the 16th century either. Or the 19th. Or part of the 20th for that matter. The RCC was stuck in the 14th century for a long time it seems - because of that infallibility thing. But then it decided to change things without (you know) admitting it had actually changed anything. Again, because of that infallibility thing.

But people noticed.

carl

20 June 2014 at 23:54  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Carl, "disingenuous dissembling" is a serious accusation. Do you charge Jack with this or all of the magisterium?

Many Popes have said that there are those who without visibly belonging to the Church are related to it and can be saved.

Pope Pius IX spoke of them as "able to attain eternal life .... Well known is the Catholic teaching that no one can be saved outside the Catholic Church. Eternal salvation cannot be obtained by those who oppose the authority and statements of the same Church and are stubbornly separated from the unity of the Church and also from the successor of Peter, the Roman Pontiff".

He then went on:

"There are, of course, those who are struggling with invincible ignorance about our most holy religion. Sincerely observing the natural law and its precepts inscribed by God on all hearts and ready to obey God, they live honest lives and are able to attain eternal life by the efficacious virtue of divine light and grace since God who clearly beholds, searches, and knows the minds, souls, thoughts, and habits of all men, because of His great goodness and mercy, will by no means suffer anyone to be punished with eternal torment who has not the guilt of deliberate sin."

Feeney was something of a fanatic believing that sacramental baptism into the Catholic Church is the only way to be saved. He felt that the notion of "baptism of desire", covering the situation of all who tried to live good lives, and those who desired no relationship with the Catholic Church, was false. He even included unbaptised martyrs amongst the damned. He argued that those who are truly sincere will be led by God to the Catholic Church - even when it didn't exist in their country or age. He accepted no form of baptism as opening the way to salvation other than by water and only within the Catholic Church. He believed God must have provided those martyrs who died for the faith without being baptised with a minister and water to baptise them before their death.

Feeney believed all non-Catholics are indiscriminately damned. He excluded from salvation people like the American Indians who lived between the times of Christ and Columbus, because they could not have been baptised, except on the hypothesis that some Christian missionaries did manage to reach them and baptise them in the Catholic faith. And if God had wanted to save them he would have made provision for this.

It all has a slight 'Jansenism' ring to it, wouldn't you say?.

Evelyn Waugh met him and thought him "raving mad" and/or a victim of "demoniac possession.

21 June 2014 at 00:33  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Albert, Happy Jack does not like the term "cradle Catholic" as it implies an uncritical acceptance of Church teachings.

Where many Catholics are concerned is that the post Vatican II Church has down played the importance of membership of the Catholic Church - and even membership of any Christian denomination.

Francis is following orthodox Catholic teaching in being welcoming towards non-Catholic Christians, as well as Muslims, Jews and now even atheists, and acknowledging Christ can work in all of us.

However, in saying through words and gestures that all may achieve salvation he never actually stresses, or for that matter, mentions, the "may" part. This is an all important qualifier as it is not Church teaching that these souls will be saved. It is, like all of our salvation, in the hands of God. The most certain way, Catholics are taught, is through faith in Christ and active membership in His Body, the Church, and reception of the channels of grace, the Sacraments. Other paths are not so certain.

It is this that Catholic 'traditionalists' baulk at and the seeming over emphasise on degrees of culpability and the exercise of conscience when it comes to lifestyles in breech of God's commandments.

"Who am I to judge" is really just not good enough for a Vicar of Christ charged with leading the Church with the Divine mandate to forgive and retain sin and to loose and bind on earth.

21 June 2014 at 01:24  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

No, Jack, I know you are just a good foot soldier repeating the Magisterium's tangled web. I don't blame you. You're just trapped by the dogma of the RCC is all.

Your problem of course is that the delegates at Trent would have agreed with Fr Feeney. That's what he knew. That's what all those traditional Catholics know today - those who are not ashamed to call me a hell-bound heretic. Just like the delegates at Trent considered Protestants back in the day.

My Mom still tells this story of the Catholic family up the hill from the family farm. They said of my Lutheran grandfather "Andrew, you are such a nice man. It's too bad you are going to hell." No, he wasn't joking. That was RC teaching circa 1930. Just an ordinary parishioner in an ordinary parish in the middle of the US.

carl

21 June 2014 at 01:47  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Carl, calling Jack a "a good foot soldier" for the Church is the kindest compliment you have paid him.

The words Jack quoted earlier were Pope Pius IX's back in the 1860's. He was hardly an unorthodox Pope. Jack was given the childish, simple and inauthentic version of the doctrine your mother told you about. The man was wrong. The actual doctrine is more nuanced and complex.

In some senses "no salvation outside the church" is tautological. As the Catechism teaches it "is not aimed at those who, through no fault of their own, do not know Christ and his Church." We all agree we can only be saved by Christ and the Holy Spirit working in us. Whether this leads to membership of the Roman Catholic Church depends on circumstances - if the Gospel has been taught and if men are receptive to it. This is where personal culpability comes in. Then, Catholics and Protestants disagree to on this too.

21 June 2014 at 02:43  
Blogger Albert said...

Happy Jack,

Happy Jack does not like the term "cradle Catholic" as it implies an uncritical acceptance of Church teachings.

That's not how I was using it. Cradle Catholics tend not to understand how Catholic actions are understood outside the Church. In this picture, Pope Francis merely lives out the teaching that Justin is his brother in Christ (albeit one who has separated himself from the Catholic Church) and that God gives grace through his ministry. There's nothing controversial in that, and nothing new. But what any convert from the CofE would recognize, but which Francis seems to have missed, is that Anglicans seeing the picture will say Francis is declaring Anglican orders valid.

I don't think Cradle Catholics tend to be uncritical, if anything they are too critical of the Church's teachings because they haven't had the negative experience of living in an institution which denies the teachings of the Catholic Church. Endless liberty of belief is much less attractive once you have lived in an institution, like the CofE, in which those who believe the least, sometimes turn the institution into an ecclesial Lord of the Flies against those who believe a bit more.

21 June 2014 at 08:56  
Blogger Len said...

The big question here is who has authority on Earth to carry out God`s plan for the redemption of humanity.There are claims to be this authority so who should we believe,?.

God planned redemption.

Jesus put God`s plan into effect.

And Jesus left someone on Earth to ensure that the plan put into effect by the Godhead was carried out perfectly.

Who could be trusted to carry out God`s plan with perfect integrity?.
Obviously only a member of the Godhead and one who totally knew the plan of salvation from direct knowledge.

Jesus tells us who has been left on Earth to carry out the plan for salvation ...God Himself!.

Jesus Promises the Holy Spirit.

“If you love me, keep my commands. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them.”(John 14)

Now the RCC claims to have captured the Holy Spirit and to hold him prisoner within the Roman Church and He performs according to their demands.
The idea is absolutely ludicrous!

The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit(John 3:8)
.

21 June 2014 at 09:00  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

If anyone is interested I wrote a few words about why I exited the RC church under 'Christian apologetics and counterblasts' on my www.questiondarwin.com site.

Boils down to having to make a decision whether to follow the word of God as set out in the Bible or the Pope of Rome. I chose the one that seemed best to me based on the available evidence, evidence that had been denied me during Catholic education where I had been force fed a false version of history and Scripture.

Not looking for a fight, but if as I am starting to see across the blogosphere Rome is getting up to her old tricks again, I am quite capable of picking up the Reformation flag and banging on about the manifold errors of Rome. Pity if that should become necessary in these times when we really ought to get back to basics and do what we can to counter twin onslaughts form the aggressive secularisers AND Islam.

21 June 2014 at 11:04  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

If anyone is interested I wrote a few words about why I exited the RC church under 'Christian apologetics and counterblasts' on my www.questiondarwin.com site.

Boils down to having to make a decision whether to follow the word of God as set out in the Bible or the Pope of Rome. I chose the one that seemed best to me based on the available evidence, evidence that had been denied me during Catholic education where I had been force fed a false version of history and Scripture.

Not looking for a fight, but if as I am starting to see across the blogosphere Rome is getting up to her old tricks again, I am quite capable of picking up the Reformation flag and banging on about the manifold errors of Rome. Pity if that should become necessary in these times when we really ought to get back to basics and do what we can to counter twin onslaughts form the aggressive secularisers AND Islam.

21 June 2014 at 11:04  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Albert' Happy Jack thanks you for that clarification and understands and appreciates the point you have made.

Len
"Now the RCC claims to have captured the Holy Spirit and to hold him prisoner within the Roman Church and He performs according to their demands. The idea is absolutely ludicrous!

No Len, what you have written is another misrepresentation of Catholic teaching - yet another wilful false statement.

21 June 2014 at 11:05  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

sorry for double posting tried to delete spare but couldn't

21 June 2014 at 11:10  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

sorry for double posting tried to delete spare but couldn't

21 June 2014 at 11:11  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

sorry for double posting tried to delete spare but couldn't

21 June 2014 at 11:11  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

*chuckle*

Right click on the dustbin and it opens in a new window. Then scroll down and delete.

21 June 2014 at 11:47  
Blogger Albert said...

Rambling Steve,

Boils down to having to make a decision whether to follow the word of God as set out in the Bible or the Pope of Rome.

No it didn't. It boiled down to whether you were going to set out the follow the word of God as understood by the Body of Christ, the pillar and bulwark of truth, the fullness of him who fills all in all, or as understood by you.

21 June 2014 at 13:34  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

I found a quote today from an American Jesuit who had written a (deliberately?) provocative piece on the sacking of a gay teacher in the USA a few months ago. The usual suspects piled into him, and I thought his riposte was so good I saved it.

I have already answered your questions, but you choose not to see those answers. I am intrigued that you agree with the bishop when you have no idea what the bishop has said or thinks. Further, besides misusing the notion of "infallible" teaching, you are claiming that these young people should follow their faith, but who is the primary teacher of faith in the Archdiocese? Finally, if by your citations of the catechism you are suggesting that I am somehow heretical or blasphemous, I think you erroneous. Nothing I have said expresses a teaching contrary to the Tradition of the Church--a tradition which includes theological questioning and investigation. My experience has been that accusations of heresy come most often from those whose ability to respond with reason has failed, and, thus, they resort to the arguments based on power, with an implication of threat. I am neither impressed by such arguments nor effectively persuaded by them.

This is where the Traditionalist arguments tend to fall down, and it's one of my biggest beefs with sites like Rorate Caeli. Beating people over the head with the catechism rather than engaging with the dissenters is counterproductive in the extreme, and if what people actually want is for Catholics not to walk away from their faith, then you need to engage their intellects rather than hit them in the face with the "accept it all or **** off" that these sites seem to promote.

Yes, HJ, I'm spending too much time with the Jesuits again. But since I think they're the main reason I've actually held onto my faith through a lot of rough times, you might give them credit for still living up to their original charism of "saving souls". :)

21 June 2014 at 14:08  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

At some point, Sister T, questioning authority transforms into a self-righteous demand that authority conform itself to pre-formed desires. People are not always looking for answers to questions. They are often looking for justification. How long do you 'engage' before you make the judgment that further engagement is futile? Every parent understands. At some point, you stop arguing and simply say "Because I say so. I know better than you. Your arguments are bad and self-serving. If you don't like it, too bad. My job is to look our for you when you are too ignorant to do it yourself."

The idea that heresy is the last refuge if the intellectually defeated is a convenient fiction. We know some things to be true. About God. About man. About sin. About redemption. Religion is not a perpetual quest to ask questions that can never be answered. The continuous demand for engagement is really a demand that nothing be considered true lest a man be required to submit his will to something he finds disagreeable.The denial of heresy is a denial of the existence of truth, for without truth there can be no heresy. It serves to vest authority in the one who questions because who is there to give him an answer.

Let's get specific. The Scriptural arguments that purport to justify homosexuality are exegetical claptrap. You can only instruct someone on this so long before you will conclude he isn't interested in being instructed. He simply wants to believe what he wants. At that point, you have to let him experience the consequence if his position. You can't live his life for him. If he wants to learn the hard way, you can't stop him. You have to let him go.

Life is too short to continually strive after the wind.

carl

21 June 2014 at 14:42  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Rambling Steve, Albert gave the short answer and, from a Protestant perspective, Carl gave a longer one about authority.

Happy Jack read your article and it seems to him you ditched Catholicism without actually understanding it in its fullness.

So you had a poor education and may be your Catholic instruction wasn't so hot. But to leave the Church at aged 19 years because someone presented you with a one-sided view of Church history and teaching?

At aged 19 years Happy Jack became a Communist and then later toyed with Zen Buddhism. We all have to live and learn. There are plenty of non-aggressive Catholic apologetic sites that will answer each and every one of your protestations against the Church. Many have been considered on here.

Perhaps you could explain this:

"I am starting to see across the blogosphere Rome is getting up to her old tricks again."

Jack does not intend being rude as he enjoys reading your posts and blogs but some things have to be said.

21 June 2014 at 15:00  
Blogger Albert said...

Well said Carl.

Sr T., your Jesuit said:

My experience has been that accusations of heresy come most often from those whose ability to respond with reason has failed, and, thus, they resort to the arguments based on power, with an implication of threat.

What he means by "power" is what should be named as "authority". Here Newman helps:

In the Apostles' days the peculiarity of faith was submission to a living authority.

No of course, we can rightly argue about where that authority is to be found today, and about what it says, but for a Christian to argue against someone simply for appealing to authority, if half-witted, since it dissolves every article of faith in its own acid.

21 June 2014 at 15:04  
Blogger Albert said...

The last paragraph should read:

Now of course, we can rightly argue about where that authority is to be found today, and about what it says, but for a Christian to argue against someone simply for appealing to authority, is half-witted, since it dissolves every article of faith in its own acid.

21 June 2014 at 15:06  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

I preferred your uncorrected final paragraph :)

21 June 2014 at 15:10  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Jack

You aren't actually trying to drag me into your argument about RCism as some kind of supportive witness, are you?

carl

21 June 2014 at 15:14  
Blogger Albert said...

Yes, I see why Sr T. But however, half-witted a Christian may be who argues from authority, a Christian who argues in principle against authority definitely is more half-witted.

21 June 2014 at 15:19  
Blogger Albert said...

You're not telling us you're not a Catholic, are you Carl?

21 June 2014 at 15:20  
Blogger Mick Jones said...

Truly a Christian gesture by the Pope (none of us can deny that the C of E is merely an ersatz Church created so the monster Henry VIII could get rid of his wife in defiance of the teaching of Jesus).

21 June 2014 at 15:42  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

21 June 2014 at 15:45  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Albert

I am certainly not a Roman Catholic.

carl

21 June 2014 at 15:45  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

*chuckle*

Carl, not at all but that was a jolly good rebuttal about endless disputes over various 'interpretations' of scripture and the part played by authority. As Albert, says we can discuss where that rests today.

Jack has just been reading an article on Canon Rosie Harper who supports Lord Falconer's Assisted Dying Bill.

She has directly contradicted the Church of England's position. She talked about the assisted death (murder?) of her uncle in Switzerland:

"My uncle had a beautiful death, with his family around him - good music, good wine, and a pain-free end. The days that would have followed as he struggled through the end stage of a brain tumour would have been terrible. He had no choice about dying. He did have choice about the manner of his death. That's all this bill is offering."

And here's the killer:

She said she could not believe in a God who would require "the most extreme suffering" simply in order to shore up "her" sovereignty.

Adding:

"I think it comes down to what sort of God you believe in. I believe in a God who is compassionate and who essentially offers us free will ...

The biggest choice we have to make always is to do with the fate of our eternal soul. If God trusted people with that choice during their lives, surely he would also trust them with that choice at the most important time of all, the end of their lives.


She argues that the concept of suicide as a sin is a relatively recent construct.

"There are nine suicides in the Old Testament and none of them are condemned. You could actually make quite a cogent argument to say that there is a suicidal element to the crucifixion. Jesus knew perfectly well what was to happen, and he did not count his life just simply going on more valuable than the higher task he had to do. There are deeper moral issues about your life than just making it go on and on for ever as long as it can go."

Confused, or what?

Same old pattern. God is a God of compassion; He wants us to be happy and not to suffer; reread scripture; reinterpret scripture;and then preach a 'new truth' and perspective.

21 June 2014 at 16:02  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Jack

It was a post about rebellion and not interpretation. The truth was presumed known at the beginning. The 'alternate interpretation' is an imposition on Scripture and not an exegetical derivation. Why? Because men want to justify themselves by changing what it says.

Nothing I said can be construed as supporting the RCC because I don't consider the RCC a legitimate authority that can bind the conscience. Not your Pope or your Bishops or your Councils. I have said it before. The fundamental difference between Protestant and Catholic is one of authority. The Scripture is to a Protestant as the Magisterium is to a Catholic.

carl

21 June 2014 at 16:51  
Blogger Uncle Brian said...

Rereading those tweets that His Grace copied into his post, a question occurs to me in connection with the first one, which reads: "Oh, for crying out loud! A grandma's blessing has greater value!"

My question is this. If the Pope's grandma was an Anglican, would it be licit for him to receive her blessing? And what "value", if any, would her blessing have?

21 June 2014 at 17:16  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Carl, Jack understood all that.
"It was a post about rebellion and not interpretation. The truth was presumed known at the beginning."

Once it is established we have truth and heresy.

"Nothing I said can be construed as supporting the RCC because I don't consider the RCC a legitimate authority that can bind the conscience."

You don't say?!

"Not your Pope or your Bishops or your Councils."

You do say it - again and again!

"I have said it before. The fundamental difference between Protestant and Catholic is one of authority. The Scripture is to a Protestant as the Magisterium is to a Catholic."

A bit simplistic for you that one Carl. Who determines what scripture says and means? On what authority? The individual readers?

21 June 2014 at 17:24  
Blogger Sister Julian said...

If only Father Debbie WERE a transexual, it would make a lot more sense. A priest of my acquaintance went to a mass to be celebrated by Father Chris. As a faithful member of FinF he left when Chris turned out to be Christine!

21 June 2014 at 18:00  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Jack

You do say it - again and again!

Well, sometimes you see to forget. Like when you try to cite me as making a statement against interest.

Who determines what scripture says and means?

OK. You've convinced me. I need an infallible interpreter. So who would I choose? I was thinking the Prophet, Seer, and Revelator of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. He has just as legitimate a claim as the Magisterium and he would make me a god.

Sound good? Hey, this Infallible interpreter stuff is alright.

carl

21 June 2014 at 18:05  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

No, no, Carl, that will not do at all. Joseph Smith, (Jnr), as you know, wasn't present when Jesus said these words to Peter and the Apostles:

"Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-Jona: because flesh and blood hath not revealed it to thee, but my Father who is in heaven.

And I say to thee: That thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

And I will give to thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven. And whatsoever thou shalt bind upon earth, it shall be bound also in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth, it shall be loosed also in heaven."


And this:

"He said therefore to them again: Peace be to you. As the Father hath sent me, I also send you.

When he had said this, he breathed on them; and he said to them: Receive ye the Holy Ghost.

Whose sins you shall forgive, they are forgiven them: and whose sins you shall retain, they are retained."


Based on scripture, its hard to get around the belief - dare Jack say truth? - of an authoritative Apostolic Church with a Divine mandate.

21 June 2014 at 18:23  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Ps
And anyway you chose Calvin.

21 June 2014 at 18:24  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Uncle Brian, many people say "God Bless you" as a form of greeting and prayer. When a validly ordained minister blesses you, Catholics believe it has the additional quality of a Church sacramental.

You figure the rest out.

21 June 2014 at 18:30  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Ummm ... Jack?

You can't appeal to Scripture in order to justify your choice of an infallible interpreter because you already stipulated that you can't understand Scripture without the infallible interpreter. It's a conundrum I grant you.

You could try throwing dice. Or perhaps you could draw lots.

carl

21 June 2014 at 19:14  
Blogger Albert said...

Carl,

I have to say, this is probably the worst argument I've ever seen you use.

21 June 2014 at 19:16  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

And, no, I don't consider Calvin an infallible interpreter. He is a convenient descriptor. As I never tire of pointing out, I became a Calvinist from studying Scripture. I became a Calvinist before I knew who John Calvin was.

carl

21 June 2014 at 19:19  
Blogger Alphonsus Jr. said...

Nothing Pope Francis the Groovy does or says can change the truth: Anglican orders were, are, and will always be invalid. Pope Leo XIII fully explained this in the following encyclical: Apostolicae Curae

21 June 2014 at 20:06  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Carl, Happy Jack says Scripture, Tradition and Reason all count in Catholicism. Those passages are mere introductions.

(It is a pretty poor argument)

"I became a Calvinist from studying Scripture."

So, a personal understanding - just like Len's or Sister Tiberia's? All heresies start the very same way. And when you say "study" what do you mean?

21 June 2014 at 20:13  
Blogger Sister Julian said...

If I care enough about someone to share a blessing with them, whether I were a priest, bishop, cardinal,pope or just me; if it were in a private situation, would it be so wrong from one Christian to another. Many times over the years when I have been praying with someone, I have given them a parting hug and asked God to bless them. Does that mean I have disobeyed a multitude of rules? Or have I simply shared God's love with someone?

21 June 2014 at 20:17  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Sister Julian, Happy Jack says carry on asking God to Bless people. There are no rules about this that he is aware of. Jack does it all the time.

God Bless.

21 June 2014 at 20:25  
Blogger Alphonsus Jr. said...

Sister Julian, I beg you to never again apply the glorious word "Christian" to heretics, apostates, or any other non-Catholics, which of course includes Anglicans. Please search the net for this essay:

Please, Don’t Call Protestants Christians, by Marian T. Horvat, Ph.D.

Also extensively read that site, Tradition in Action. There you'll find undiluted Catholicism, Catholicism uninfected by the Hippie Council Revolution, aka the Judas Council Revolution, aka the Second Vatican Council of 1962-65.

"At the close of a long life (for I was born in 1905 and I now see the year 1990), I can say that it has been marked by excep􏰀onal world events: three world wars, that which took place from 1914 to 1918, that which took place from 1939 to 1945, and that of the Second Va􏰀can Council from 1962 to 1965.
The disasters caused by these three wars, and especially by the last of them, are incalculable in the domain of material ruins, but even more so in the spiritual realm."

-Abp. Marcel Lefebvre, Prologue to his book, Spiritual Journey

21 June 2014 at 20:29  
Blogger Jay Bee said...

Sister Julian@20:17

Maybe you have disobeyed a multitude of rules in order to share God's love with someone. If so you are in good company. For the Lord himself ignored rules that set aside the commands of God in favour of human traditions.

21 June 2014 at 20:36  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

waits with interest to see the response of HJ and Albert to Alphonsus above :) I'm staying out of this.

21 June 2014 at 21:33  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Sister Tiberia, Happy Jack is keeping out of this one too, thank you very much.

Jack hasn't got the energy and, besides, it'll just encourage Carl.

21 June 2014 at 22:03  
Blogger Uncle Brian said...

Uncle Brian said...

Just one point I’d like to add to Ars Hendrik’s summing-up at 11:28. There are many millions of Catholics out there who speak and act as though the Church sprang into being with Vatican II. Before that, there had been nothing but chaos. Also, of course, there are many millions of Catholics out there who speak and act as though the Church came to an end with Vatican II. Since then, there has been nothing but chaos. It looks to me as though both groups are making the same mistake.

20 June 2014 11:50


My apologies to His Grace for posting the same comment twice on the same thread. I suppose it must be a breach of etiquette, but it seemed appropriate in the circumstances.

21 June 2014 at 22:12  
Blogger IanCad said...

We've been discussing Muslim fanatics; now up pops up a Catholic one in the person of Alphonsus Jr.

21 June 2014 at 22:14  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...

Something I think we all can agree on and I think puts the catholic protestant thing into perspective.

I have never seen such a powerful visual argument of a real concern that we all share

Puts our petty squabbles into perspective

here

Phil

21 June 2014 at 22:29  
Blogger Albert said...

When I was an Anglican, I thought SSPX members were just Protestants on the other side of Rome.

21 June 2014 at 22:50  
Blogger Uncle Brian said...

It does, Phil. Thank you for that.

21 June 2014 at 22:52  
Blogger Alphonsus Jr. said...

While it doesn't at all negate the supreme importance of becoming Catholic and therefore steering clear of every brand of heresy, including that of the Anglican sect, I nevertheless thank you, Phil Roberts, for pointing us to that graphical representation of the horror of today's ongoing holocaust.

Still, I'd like to suggest some amendments to the language related to this holocaust; that is, to the systematic slaughter of the most innocent and defenseless among us - in utero infants - spawned through the neopagan worship of the idol Liberty on the bloody Altar of Choice and Convenience. Every trace of Orwellian bowdlerization must be renounced. No longer must we stand for the whitewashing of this bloody horror. Therefore:

1) Abortions aren't "had," "gotten," "performed," or "provided." Abortions are wreaked, inflicted, committed, and perpetrated.

2) Those who wreak, inflict, commit, perpetrate "abortions" (rather: surgical or pharmaceutical infanticides) aren't to be honored with the name of doctors. Rather, as they've renounced their Hippocratic calling to do no harm, they're to be called surgical/pharmaceutical hitmen or surgical/pharmaceutical terrorists.

3) Nor are those who hire surgical/pharmaceutical hitmen/terrorists to be called "victims." They're co-conspirators.

Putting it all together, we get something like this:

"Jane and Tom, being no better than the very worst Nazis, took out a contract on their baby's life by hiring a surgical hitman to commit infanticide."

Or:

"Shaquilla, consistent with her status of being no better than the worst Nazi, is considering hiring a hitman to perpetrate surgical infanticide."

Yes, let's stop whitewashing the horror.

"A country that legalizes the murder of its own children is doomed."

-Dietrich von Hildebrand

21 June 2014 at 23:09  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Jack

it'll just encourage Carl.

It's not like I didn't know it already. However, I am kind of amused that Alphonsus must have been gnashing his teeth when he realized the only person on this weblog defending the actual historic teachings of the RCC ... was a Protestant.

That just might have something to do with his posts.

carl

21 June 2014 at 23:29  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Albert, there's a bit more to the SSPX than that. Who knows, perhaps they have been a necessary brake on some of the more wilder excesses of the 'Spirit of Vatican II'.

Jack sometimes reflects on their concerns and critique of the modern church, because it is given from within a Catholic perspective. They hold a shared set of doctrinal positions. The post-conciliar Popes seem to forget that sometimes conciliation is needed within the Church too. Pope Benedict was an exception to this and, Jack believes, understood them.

The Society are in schism, having departed from communion with the Church. They can return if they accept the Catholic Church's conditions - a doctrinal document presented to them - and the Pope, as the definitive criterion of membership.

In Roman Catholic teaching, every heresy is a schism, while there may be some schisms free of the added guilt of heresy. So far as Jack knows, none of the SSPX's views are heretical or have been declared so.

21 June 2014 at 23:34  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Carl that made Jack chuckle. Never let a tactical opportunity pass you by! And just as Jack and Albert had you cornered too.

21 June 2014 at 23:36  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

My PP refers to the SSPX as "the ultimate cafeteria Catholics" :) I doubt they'd be impressed by the comparison.

21 June 2014 at 23:42  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

21 June 2014 at 23:54  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Albert

As a general rule, I use vetted arguments against Catholics. That means I know their pedigree because I trust the apologists who use them. It gives me confidence to weather criticism such as you delivered.

The RC asserts the need for an infallible interpreter. He seeks to destroy confidence in the perspicuity of Scripture so that he can offer a solution to the problem. In doing so he hopes to slip past the fact that the choice of infallible interpreter is subject to the same criticism he levies on Scripture. There are after all several claimants to the position. Who decides and how? Is it simply (gasp) private judgment?

Jack offered Sacred Tradition. That doesn't work because Sacred Tradition is 'deposited' with the Magisterium. He has no access to it except through that body. He would first have to submit to the body before he could decide the Magisterium was the infallible interpreter. The conclusion becomes forgone.

He offered Scripture. But that option suffers from the same dilemma. He must assume the infallible interpreter in order to use Scripture to identify the infallible interpreter. RCs tell me that Scripture can only be understood in light of the teaching of the RCC. So a man cannot begin with Scripture in the absence of the infallible interpreter and trust the outcome. He must first submit to the interpreter so that he can see. Again the conclusion becomes forgone.

That leaves reason. But reason cannot apprehend the transcendent. It has no input upon which to operate. I actually once read a RC argument purporting to prove the RCC was the infallible interpreter by means of reason. The method adopted was to disprove all other claimants and declare the RCC the candidate left standing. The huge methodological flaw was not subjecting the RCCs claims to the same mechanism.

If you ask me about interpretation, I will ask you about the interpreter. It's really the same question in different guises.

carl

21 June 2014 at 23:57  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Siter Tiberia, then your cause is lost and Happy Jack will no longer attempt to return you to the straight and narrow path. The gate always remains open.

(This is not an anathema, merely a lay persons observation)

*chuckle*

Your only hope now is to find an elderly priest, preferably one who took the 'Oath against Modernism' before it became voluntary in 1967. Pius X defined Modernism as a heresy in 1907.

The SSPX are holding onto Catholic doctrine and, as Jack said above, nothing they have claimed has been deemed heretical. The modernisers, and their heretical Modernism agenda, are the real 'pick and choose' brigade.

If anything, the Church should adopt a firmer line with those promoting disobedience and heretical teachings and excommunicate them. Heresy within the Church is dangerous as it eats away at the foundations. Now Catholic politicians who previously dissented from Church teaching are presuming to lecture senior members on the *real* Gospel message!

Do pass on Happy Jack's blessings to your Priest tomorrow.

22 June 2014 at 00:04  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Jack

Cornered?

[Insert riotous laughter here]

Anyways, I see Germany and Ghana tied thus opening the door for the inevitable American victory in Group G. We're the underdogs you know, and were related. You should be cheering for us now. Just think of us as England redux.

carl

22 June 2014 at 00:06  
Blogger Alphonsus Jr. said...

So much could be said in response to the unhappy ignorance above. However, I've had such discussions so many times now; I have, at last, learned their futility. Therefore, knowing that most believe what they want to believe, I'll limit myself to suggesting the following essay regarding the absurd charge that the SSPX is in schism:

Gnostic Twaddle, by Christopher Ferrara

For more, go to the SSPX site and click on the FAQ section.

Perhaps these things might get through to just one reader.

22 June 2014 at 00:21  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Alphonsus Jr, come now you mustn't throw your tows out of the pram just yet. This blog is receptive to reasoned arguments and thrives on debate.

Surely you feel a responsibility to relieve us of our "unhappy ignorance"?

Carl, Happy Jack will leave Albert to unpick your arguments above.

He'll just say this: it was the same body, the Church, appointed by Christ, that actually determined canonical scripture. You wouldn't have scripture but for the Church.

The Truth existed before the Church; was revealed, but not in its fullness by Christ, to the Church by Christ; and, on His authority, determined what texts properly reflected the Holy Spirit.

Given this body did all of above, don't you think it retains the same authority to interpret what it put together in the first place?

As for the football, Jack says good luck to your boys and he hopes they do go on and qualify for the next round. Just don't let it go to your heads!

22 June 2014 at 00:38  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Albert

When I was an Anglican, I thought SSPX members were just Protestants on the other side of Rome.

That's sort of like calling someone a homophobe. It's just a way to dismiss them without addressing them.

The difficulty you face, Albert, is this. If you could transport yourself back in time 150 years, your doctrine would not be recognizable as authentically Catholic. Alphonsus wouldn't have that trouble.

carl

22 June 2014 at 01:22  
Blogger Alphonsus Jr. said...

You're quite right, Carl. The SSPX simply refuses to embrace the errors, ambiguities, and novelties of the Hippie Council, aka the Judas Council, aka the Second Vatican Council of 1962-65. Thus they also refuse to accede to any of the ecumaniacal (misspelling quite intentional) scandals and nonsense committed by the post-conciliar popes, whether it be those of counterfeit conservatives like Pope John Paul II and Benedict XVI or the deeply embarrassing Pope Francis the Groovy.

Moreover, unlike NeoCatholics (that is, those liberals erroneously seen as conservatives by the world; e.g., George Weigel, or those of that outfit known as Catholic Answers, or those of the National Catholic Register), those of the SSPX refuse to indulge in the fantasy that the post-conciliar wreckage flows from some faulty implementation of Vatican II and not from Vatican II itself.

In short, those of and aligned with the SSPX simply embrace undiluted, unreconstructed Catholicism, which now seems so very foreign after the Judas Council Revolution. As such, we reject every Protestant heresy, including of course sola scripture, sola fide, and the denial of transubstantiation, and we continue with only the Mass that the saints and our ancestors would recognize as precisely Catholic (in contrast to the wretched Novus Ordo service, consciously fabricated after the Judas Council to be acceptable to Protestants; thus the Lutherans, for example, have stated that it's ok with them!). Much more could be mentioned, all showing that it's most unjust and cruel to call the SSPX and its friends Protestants.

Finally, I recommend that all interested parties see a series I've uploaded on Youtube. Find it via this search:

Bp. Bernard Fellay: On the Crisis in the Church, playlist

Be sure to fully read the description box under the first video in that series.

Also, do this search for an ever-growing list of mine on Youtube:

Vatican II Wreckage, playlist

Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum.



22 June 2014 at 05:02  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

HJ

My PP does occasionally read the arguments on Cranmer so he may already have seen your good wishes. I have to be a bit careful these days because he also knows my " alter ego" here and if I lose the plot at someone here then I can expect a degree of gentle tut-tutting over coffee after Sundsy Mass. :)

22 June 2014 at 05:51  
Blogger AnonymousInBelfast said...

Carl

Vatican II is not so much an aberration as it is the most recent iteration of a long line of "reunderstandings" that rely on presenting themselves as principally accretive rather than reformative, radical or counter-radical in turn.

I suppose my frustration arises not in loyal adherence to doctrine, but in the historiography that reads everything backwards from the present day. Happy Jack talks about context, but what he indisputably means is the context of now, not the context of the past. Nothing will be faithfully read as contradicting the present position held.

Thus, all manner of strange paradoxes arise, but since we are pointed towards a present Authority which affirms, even as it overshadows and obscures, its previous iterations we have a place to affix our mental affections.

The funny thing, to me, is that I can't discern much methodological difference between the ardent Magisterialists and Modern Liberals. Both essentially hold that the Holy Spirit may reveal "new understandings" (one through an institution, the other through the zeitgeist) which render if not incompatible nevertheless inappropriate past doctrinal positions. Teaching is what it is within any given time. The only difference is that the Liberal will conjure the oldest heresies under the guise of being radical, whilst the Magisterium will create of its origins heterodoxy under the guise of being continuous.

Protestantism is no less susceptible to such temptations, but has at least a founding principle - a constitutional basis, if you will - in the authority of Scripture which prevents it from arguing itself into becoming unrecognisable. It is at least possible to say "This has departed too far". The Liberal who has travelled the same distance needs only the affirmation of society to continue on, the Magisterial advocate only agreement in convocation to do the same.

22 June 2014 at 06:27  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Alphonsus

thus the Lutherans, for example, have stated that it's ok with them!

Funny you should say that. Although the reason escapes me, I remember attending a Catholic Mass once. My strongest memory is that I wouldn't have needed the Missal. I was a Lutheran at the time, and the Liturgy was word for word already in my memory.

I wouldn't attend a Catholic Mass today. I was pretty ignorant back then.

carl

22 June 2014 at 07:28  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

AiB

but in the historiography that reads everything backwards from the present day. Happy Jack talks about context, but what he indisputably means is the context of now

Exactly. There is something so disrespectful about imposing upon the delegates of Trent a position they would have flatly rejected. The modern Catholic says "What they meant to say was..." They said what they meant. It was understood for 400 years. What changed?

carl

22 June 2014 at 07:34  
Blogger Albert said...

Carl,

That's sort of like calling someone a homophobe. It's just a way to dismiss them without addressing them.

No it wasn't. It was a way of saying that I'd been out all evening and was ready for bed, not a thorough discussion of the SSPX. In any case, while I would have a more nuanced position on the SSPX now than I did as an Anglican, there is a problem with a group that appeals to the Magisterium on some things, but condemns it on others.

If you could transport yourself back in time 150 years, your doctrine would not be recognizable as authentically Catholic. Alphonsus wouldn't have that trouble.

If you mean Catholic doctrine has developed in the last 150 years, well then, yes of course it has. But an understanding of the development of doctrine was already part of Catholic tradition by then. What wasn't was disobeying the Magisterium.

22 June 2014 at 07:39  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Albert

You can't "develops" infallible dogma into the exact opposite of its original definition. And you can't cover up what you have done by saying you haven't changed anything. You can't assert contradictory things, and resolve the contradiction by an appeal to an authoritative definition.

carl

22 June 2014 at 08:04  
Blogger Alphonsus Jr. said...

Carl, I'm sad to learn that you endured the horror of attending the wretched Novus Ordo service. Please note that you attended the Novus Ordo service, and therefore not the actual Catholic Mass. Had you attended an actual Catholic Mass, it would have been radically offensive to you as a Protestant - as well it should.

I can see that you'll make an excellent traditional Catholic. I see that you'll become one. Let me know when you're ready. I have the right contacts.

22 June 2014 at 08:23  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

22 June 2014 at 08:44  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

Thank your god you don't live in the 16th Century Christendom.

Judging by the tone and invective of some of the comments here you lot would ave no problem on turning on your fellow Christians in a manner that make ISIS thuggery seem kind.

22 June 2014 at 08:46  
Blogger Len said...

Can the RCC be reformed to bring it into line with Christianity as preached by Jesus His disciples and the apostles?.

Apparently not..
How can a religious organization which has got things so badly wrong{according to the Word of God not my estimation!]admit they were in error without looking total frauds?.
So the RCC is stuck with its errors and 'additions' and cannot radically change them without looking incredibly devious(which they are!)
So we have the RCC 'foot soldiers' popping up repeating the same errors the same mistakes the same devious 'interpretations' without shame or understanding what they are doing because I cannot believe these 'foot soldiers' can have much of an idea that their masters have deliberately deceived them?.

22 June 2014 at 09:03  
Blogger Albert said...

Carl,

You can't "develops" infallible dogma into the exact opposite of its original definition. And you can't cover up what you have done by saying you haven't changed anything. You can't assert contradictory things, and resolve the contradiction by an appeal to an authoritative definition.

Perhaps this has been resolved higher up, but what are you referring to there, specifically.

22 June 2014 at 09:22  
Blogger Martin Marprelate said...

A brief word on 'Apostolic Succession.'

It is not to be found in Popes or Bishops. Many popes have been atrociously wicked- unfit to receive any such succession, and unfit to pass it on.

True Apostolic Succession is found when a faithful servant of Christ, be he never so humble, passes on to another the true word of God 'Once for all delivered to the saints' (Jude 3), contained in the Bible and nowhere else.

22 June 2014 at 10:04  
Blogger IanCad said...

Phil Roberts @ 22:29.

Thanks for that Phil.

In its struggles the USA has suffered very few casualties compared to the Old World.
Nevertheless; an absolutely horrifying graphic.

There will be a price that, some day, must be repaid.

22 June 2014 at 10:31  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Carl
"If you could transport yourself back in time 150 years, your doctrine would not be recognizable as authentically Catholic."

Reformulations and reiterations to suit the Church's mission in the 21st century, are not doctrinal changes.

150 years ago was before two world wars, the holocaust, fascism and communism, the cold war, the advance of secularism, the rise of radical atheism, the 'sexual revolution', the Modernist heresy, and goodness knows how many more changes in the world.

22 June 2014 at 12:07  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

... not to mention liberalism, universal suffrage, nationalism, industrialisation and capitalism. And one mustn't overlook the State of Israel and the re-emergence of radical Islam. The list just goes on and on.

22 June 2014 at 13:40  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Carl
"Alphonsus must have been gnashing his teeth when he realized the only person on this weblog defending the actual historic teachings of the RCC ... was a Protestant."

You were not "defending" the teachings - as if. You were misrepresenting them in order to undermine the authority of the Magisterium and the indefectibility of the Church. It was tactical probing at a perceived weakness.

Jack notices you have not responded to his points about the Church being the body with authority from Christ to determine what was scriptural and what was not. This solved your supposed "conundrum" - which was one Jack has never come across before.

As Jack has stated doctrine was positively reformulated to be better suited to the modern age. Show where any doctrine has changed in actual substance since Trent. "No salvation outside the church" hasn't, although some of the excesses of implementing it and teaching it have crossed lines.

In many ways Vatican II attempted to reform the Church internally and find a 'via media' to hold together traditionalists and those wanting to equip the Church for the modern age.

Jack concedes some of its documents were probably too ambiguous and vague in key sections and left the door ajar for Modernism. As a result, liturgical abuses followed - some scandalous. This also allowed too much experimentation with ecumenicalism that down played the place of the Catholic Church as the one, true, visible Body of Christ, a relationship with Christ as necessary for salvation, and membership of His Body as the only sure and certain means of salvation.

22 June 2014 at 14:21  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Alphonsus

Please note that you attended the Novus Ordo service, and therefore not the actual Catholic Mass

I am aware of that now. At the time I was clueless. I have a friend at work who was instrumental in getting the TLM provided in my city.

Had you attended an actual Catholic Mass, it would have been radically offensive to you as a Protestant - as well it should

What offends me about the Mass is the Theology of the Mass. That is common to both. I am not much concerned about things that might be said about Protestants in the Tridentine Mass.

I can see that you'll make an excellent traditional Catholic

Yeah, that's what Jeff says.

I see that you'll become one.

I would love to be a Catholic. Repudiate Trent and we can talk.

carl

22 June 2014 at 15:14  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Albert

what are you referring to there, specifically.

EENS

carl

22 June 2014 at 15:19  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Jack

You were not "defending" the teachings - as if. You were misrepresenting them in order to undermine the authority of the Magisterium and the indefectibility of the Church

OK, I admit that motivation might have been somewhere in the back of my subconscious buried deep and hardly visible. I am surprised you would even notice it. It never occurred to me until you mentioned it. But I didn't misrepresent anything. I was refusing to let you airbrush history to fit the convenient needs of the modern RCC.

The alert Reader will notice how I developed my argument in that post, btw.

carl

22 June 2014 at 15:29  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Jack

In the first place, the church did not "define" Scripture. It received Scripture. The church had a formed canon well before the beginnings of a monarchial episcopate in Rome. In fact the RCC didn't actually define Scripture until 1560. (And when it got around to doing so, it did so incorrectly.) How did the church get along without a defined canon in the days before Trent?

In the second place, the existence of Scripture does not depend on the authoritative voice of some temporal agency. The Scripture predates the RCC by centuries. There was never any Jewish Magisterium that sprinkled Holy Water over the OT books and said "Behold, thou art canon." And yet Jesus held men accountable for knowing and believing it.

In the third place, your answer is non responsive. You must determine the identity of the infallible interpreter without any appeal to the infallible interpreter. An assertion the Christ established the RCC is a hidden appeal to Scripture as the authenticating authority. Which you can't understand on your own. According to the RCC.

carl

22 June 2014 at 15:47  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Carl
"I would love to be a Catholic. Repudiate Trent and we can talk."

Unconditional surrender, then?

The Church rejected Jansenism and its affinity with Calvinist theology as a heresy many moons ago - and after Trent too. Its not about to do an about turn on this - not now; not ever.

22 June 2014 at 15:52  
Blogger Albert said...

Carl @1519,

I believe that.

22 June 2014 at 16:21  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Carl
"In the first place, the church did not "define" Scripture. It received Scripture."

Okay, wrong word. The Church had to determine, under God's guidance, what was received as inspired scripture. Actually the early members of the Church shared various texts and received oral instruction from the Apostles and those commissioned by them and Jesus. Some texts were no doubt excluded. As early as the first century theological disputes over interpretation were being settled by the Bishop of Rome. And the first Council in Jerusalem set a template for developing an understanding of Christ's gospel - and all this before it was written down and established as canon.

"The church had a formed canon well before the beginnings of a monarchial episcopate in Rome."

Yes, it did. That'll be from the early Church Councils. The Church was from its inception authoritative and remains Orthodox and Catholic.

"The Scripture predates the RCC by centuries."

Jack doesn't think so. Are you saying the Roman Catholic Church did not exist before Trent? Yes Jack knows the Roman bit was a later development.

"There was never any Jewish Magisterium that sprinkled Holy Water over the OT books and said "Behold, thou art canon." And yet Jesus held men accountable for knowing and believing it."

Well yes, Moses, the High Priesthood and Sanhedrin was the authority behind the Torah. The Prophets acted and wrote under the direct inspiration of God.

"You must determine the identity of the infallible interpreter without any appeal to the infallible interpreter."

Why? Jack believes we can take the very clear and plain words of Jesus Christ as giving authority to the Church.

"An assertion the Christ established the RCC is a hidden appeal to Scripture as the authenticating authority. Which you can't understand on your own. According to the RCC."

No, its an appeal to the authority of the recorded words of Jesus Christ. It didn't have to be written down, did it? Jesus never commanded the Apostles to commit His words and actions to text. This argument is a (not so) "hidden appeal" to scripture alone and to private judgement.

Jesus told His Apostles:

"But when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will teach you all truth."

This need not have been written down to be the Truth - just remembered. It was accepted as canon because the Gospel of John was accepted as an inspired record of the Truth - as were the writings of Matthew, Mark and Luke. They walked and talked with Christ, so what better authority?

22 June 2014 at 16:24  
Blogger Unknown said...

So the message according to Pope Francis is that it doesn't matter what church you are a member of ---- great! I can join the Episcopalians, have an abortion,marry a same sex partner and totally blow off Mass on Sunday. Hooray for Pope Francis!

22 June 2014 at 16:51  
Blogger Sister Julian said...

Sorry to backtrack a bit,but I sometimes need to sleep and today is Corpus Christi so a procession and benediction at the end of mass. Then my 2 furry litle boys needed a walk. Thanks to Happy Jack, I shall continue to share God's blessing with those I meet. To Alphonsus - I am humbled and grateful to call myself a Christian and am delighted to welcome as a Christian friend anyone of any denomination who believes in the Virgin Birth, the bodily resurrection and the coming of the Holy Spirit to inspire and indwell all Christians.

22 June 2014 at 20:20  
Blogger Alphonsus Jr. said...

Unknown, please understand that Pope Francis the Groovy is a revolutionary - like all post-conciliar popes - fully processed by the Hippie Council Revolution, aka the Judas Council Revolution, aka the Second Vatican Council of 1962-65.

22 June 2014 at 20:30  
Blogger Alphonsus Jr. said...

Albert, regarding the errors, ambiguities, and novelties of Vatican II, I invite you to search the net and read the following in sequence:

The Errors of Vatican II - Si Si No No - Catholic Family News

&

The Rhine Flows into the Tiber: A History of Vatican II, by Rev. Fr. Ralph Wiltgen

&

The Catechism of the Crisis in the Church, by Rev. Matthias Gaudron

&

Iota Unum: A Study of Changes in the Catholic Church in the Twentieth Century, by Romano Amerio

&

The Second Vatican Council - An Unwritten Story by Professor Roberto deMattei and Michael M. Miller

We must understand the nature of today's situation. When faced with fully processed conciliar castrati like Cardinal Dolan, for example, along with every other variety of Judas Council wreckage, traditional Catholics understand that our situation today is akin to that of those unfortunate souls in The Road Warrior movie. The nuclear bombs have exploded. Cities have been leveled. Fields of corpses have long since rotted and been scattered to the winds. In the wasteland remain two tiny camps, the barbaric marauders and those who seek to preserve the fuel of life. Traditional Catholics are the wild inhabitants of the wasteland desperately clinging to the fuel of grace, constantly under siege by powerful, leather-clad barbarians of the lavender mafia.

"At the close of a long life (for I was born in 1905 and I now see the year 1990), I can say that it has been marked by exceptional world events: three world wars, that which took place from 1914 to 1918, that which took place from 1939 to 1945, and that of the Second Vatican Council from 1962 to 1965. The disasters caused by these three wars, and especially by the last of them, are incalculable in the domain of material ruins, but even more so in the spiritual realm."

-Abp. Marcel Lefebvre, Prologue to his Spiritual Journey
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22 June 2014 at 20:48  

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