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Friday, July 13, 2007

Is Pope Benedict XVI Turning the Clock Back?

See this Article.
I really do not see what all the fuss is about concerning the Pope's recent statements. He is simply restating the Catholic Church's teachings. Why this has so many from other religions and Protestants acting all surprised and offended is irrational to me and seems to be juvenile behaviour at best. This shows how far our culture has gone down the road of relativism and its denial of any absolute truth claims. Thankfully, the present Pope has not been sucked into this vacuum we call post-modern culture. What would anyone expect from the Pope but to say that the Catholic Faith is the only true faith and that the sacramental ministry of the Catholic Church is what all Christians are called to embrace? There is something lacking in that the present visible Church is not unified. (Read John 17.) The Holy Father is simply being faithful as the chief pastor of the Roman Church and her faith claims as well as the faith claims of the Christian religion. Jesus did say that 'He was the only way, the truth, the life,' and if conversion is called upon from all creation to the one true LORD then we would expect Benedict XVI to call his flock to the same belief.

As far as the reforms of the Mass are concerned, it is my opinion that these reforms are in desperate need of happening. I know someone very close to me who attended my Anglo-Catholic parish here in England and found it to be more of what they understood Catholic worship to be than what they are finding in some American Roman Catholic churches. Maybe the Pope is simply calling upon the Roman Church to be what it claims to be, Catholic! Before people jump too quickly to believe everything the media states--which is frequently biased against the Catholic Church--ought to read the document for themselves. You can find it right here.

From the statement:

Third Question: Why was the expression "subsists in" adopted instead of the simple word "is"?

Response: The use of this expression, which indicates the full identity of the Church of Christ with the Catholic Church, does not change the doctrine on the Church. Rather, it comes from and brings out more clearly the fact that there are "numerous elements of sanctification and of truth" which are found outside her structure, but which "as gifts properly belonging to the Church of Christ, impel towards Catholic Unity".

"It follows that these separated churches and Communities, though we believe they suffer from defects, are deprived neither of significance nor importance in the mystery of salvation. In fact the Spirit of Christ has not refrained from using them as instruments of salvation, whose value derives from that fullness of grace and of truth which has been entrusted to the Catholic Church"

3 Comments:

Anonymous john scholasticus said...

It's not remotely surprising that the (present) Pope should propound this opinion. What is disturbing is that ANY Anglicans should accord it any respect. For as soon as they do so, they cut off the branch on which they are sitting. Al Kimlel, among many others, has recently pointed out how such Anglicans are in a state of self-deception.

7:38 pm  
Blogger Fr. Jeffrey said...

John,

Why is one cutting off the branch their sitting on by not being surprised by the Pope's stance here? I simply respect the fact that he faithfully holds to what the RCC teaches. One is not self-deceived by stating an obvious objective reality such as the Pope's faithfulness to Catholic teachings. Plus, after reading through the document, I don't see what was so new or necessarily overly negative about others outside the Church of Rome. I am happy to point out that the leader of the RCC is being faithful to the Church's dogma whether we Anglicans or any other denomination likes it or not. I respect the commitment to their teaching rather than constant waffling and saying yes and no at the same time. Would you agree?

10:17 pm  
Anonymous john scholasticus said...

I agree he's being consistent to a certain sort of Roman Catholicism. Not - obviously - the Catholicism of Pope John 23rd., but those days - unfortunately - are long gone. But I don't see why non-RC Christians should accord this position - arrogant and blinkered as it - any respect. It is contradicted every day by the spiritual experience of non-RC Christians. I do hope you agree.

7:15 pm  

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