An E-Mail Going Around Catholic Theological Circles

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2015-10-28-fitz-c

 

Colleagues, it is time for us to take a stand.  It has come to our attention that some of our members have come under attack from a group of right-wing Catholics who have no academic credentials:  not a theological degree among them.  As far as we can tell, none of them are even college graduates.  They are all white (of course) and all male (of course).  Some of them have produced texts that have been used against our fellow Catholic academics, often resulting in cries of heresy being raised by people who share their narrow, blinkered view of Catholicism.  This is intolerable in the twenty-first century for brilliant scholars to be held to account by ignorant yahoos.  We therefore ask you to append your names to the attached open letter and e-mail it back to us for future publication.  United, we can prevail over this assault of anti-intellectualism masquerading as Catholicism!

 

We, the undersigned, are distressed by the efforts of a group of academically unqualified men who have sought to appoint themselves as judges of Catholic scholars, graduates of some of the most distinguished Catholic institutions  of higher learning in our land.  We reject this effort to reduce Catholicism to a body of rules, an effort motivated by fear and a rejection of both intellectual inquiry and the spirit of mercy that is the hallmark of Catholicism as stated by Pope Francis.  We refuse to cede Catholicism to these men and their misguided followers.  We therefore urge all Catholics to reject these men:  Simon (who is called Peter),  his brother Andrew;  James son of Zebedee, and his brother John; Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; and Simon the Zealot.  There is also a Saul who goes under the alias of Paul.  Too many Catholics read what these men have written, and, ignorant of the latest Catholic scholarship, attack Catholics who have given their lives to interpreting Catholicism for modern times.  These attacks must stop or Catholicism will be reduced to a fundamentalism that Pope Francis has frequently warned about. 

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37 Comments

  1. 27 Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord. 28 Let a man examine himself, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. 29 For any one who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment upon himself.

    Who does this Paul character think he is anyway?

    As for the letter, it is to laugh. Maureen Dowd writes about the Church all the time, where’s the letter citing her lack of a degree in theology?

  2. It is amazing that this James Martin can condemn his critics for not having a theological degree when most the the disciples of Christ were themselves unlearned men.

  3. “Colleagues, . . . . United, we can prevail over this assault of anti-intellectualism masquerading as Catholicism!”
    .
    .

    I can’t tell if that’s satire or not.

  4. Credentials! I don’t need no stinking credentials.
    .
    I can discern errata in post-modern heterodox opinions and rank speculations, which lack Scriptural or Magisterial bases.

  5. Heresy is a serious charge. And if the shoe fits, you need to wear it.

    “Hater” on the other hand is an unserious charge. When Fr. Martin results to categories employed by Taylor Swift, he proves how lightly we should take his protests.

  6. The opinions of theologians outside their own area of expertise, like those of scientists, are entitled to no particular respect.

    When they talk about the D, E, J and P sources in the Pentateuch, the priority of Mark, the authorship of the Pastorals or the Comma Johanneum, the speak as experts on topics where an non-expert’s opinion is worthless. But on political and ethical questions, their erudition gives them no special advantage.

    Indeed, it is remarkable how seldom they apply those talents that made them first-class palaeographers, textual critics or comparative philologists – assiduity and minute and painstaking accuracy – to questions that lie outside their own field.

  7. “I agree with this letter[.] Heresy is a grave charge.”

    Unlike hate I suppose. Or suggesting Cardinal Burke is a schismatic, for that matter.

  8. “When Fr. Martin results to categories employed by Taylor Swift, he proves how lightly we should take his protests.”

    Now I wish I had said that.

  9. “Sounds like the result of bad potty training.”
    .
    Hank, when I read that comment of yours, I laughed so hard
    I frightened the dog. As for Fr. Martin, perhaps he could
    remind us where St Therese of Lisieux, Doctor of the Church,
    got her theology degree?

  10. Michael P-S I love you like a rock but I’m sticking to my autodidact opinion on JDEP junque hypothesis. 🙂

  11. Saint Tarcisius pray for us.

    “Anxious to view the Christian mysteries, the Mob turned upon young Tarcisius with fury,He went down under the blows and it is believed that a fellow Christian drove off the Mob to rescue the young acolyte.”

    The boy died on his way back to the catacombs.

    Why is this relevant?

    Because a boy of twelve in the third century had more respect and love for God and neighbor than many so-called learned men of theology of today. This boy paid the price with his life. Learn from him Fr. M.

  12. What kind of commie leftist is this guy, Martin.
    When one smears his opponent one should do it right.
    Just defining one’s opponent as a hateful person isn’t enough.
    There is the racist, misogynistic, homophobic smear or the
    truther or birther or conspiracy theorist smear or returning
    to the evil bigoted ‘50s smear, or the climate change deniers
    smear. And the ultimate smear used by every fanatical
    commie leftist, the Nazi and KKK smear. This Jacobin is
    arguing to replace the truth with intellectualism.

    Was watching Raymond Arroyo this evening with Cardinal
    Wuerl who explained the synod’s approach to divorce and
    remarried Catholics. Of course the teachings of the Church
    will not change, nor will the statements made by God on the
    indissolubility of marriage. However, the approach to Catholics
    in difficult situations by the Church will be change. They
    must be brought to God’s love and mercy where a solution
    to their difficulties can be achieved (no mention of repentance)
    God’s love is free and for all. Everyone has a right to God’s love
    and mercy. Or in other words everyone has a right to the sacraments
    no matter the difficulties they may find themselves in. So Wuerl
    is saying a Catholic living in sin can receive Communion, because
    his has a right to God’s love and mercy. Yet somehow this will not
    alter the teachings of the Church.

  13. The story goes as such.

    So the bridge fell into the river bed.

    The local peasants reported this to the capital.

    The Engineers in said “what do a bunch of peasants know” and made no effort to fix it.

    The local governor sent a protest to the capitol, You idiots, “a bunch of peasants” may not know how to rebuild it; but hey are perfectly qualified to say it is in the river”.

    Some of the blogger is question may not know how to put the truth kn proper academic form – but they certainly know enough to recognize heresy when they see or hear it.

  14. What ?! from the letter signed by catholics and academics ” … We therefore urge all Catholics to reject these men: Simon (who is called Peter), his brother Andrew; James son of Zebedee, and his brother John; Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; and Simon the Zealot. There is also a Saul who goes under the alias of Paul. Too many Catholics read what these men have written, and, ignorant of the latest Catholic … ”
    .
    There’ s inclusiveness in the short piece for the above signers. ‘h’ is for humor, too.
    http://eponymousflower.blogspot.com/2015/10/satire.html

  15. “Poor, Ann. She is so meek.”

    There does come a point when even Christ “loses it” and cleans our the temple area of vermin.

  16. Karl.

    Meek Ann, the “call ’em like you see ’em,” Catholic. As for me, I like her. Her distaste for fraudulent speakers of TRUTH is not a hindrance to her spirit, rather a complementary asset in this, a cloud of witnesses we call the body of Christ.
    Mercy is lost enabling the disordered soul.
    Clear teaching and abstinence from sinful actions is Mercy.

  17. “Check out Ann Barnhardt on Fr. James Martin below. Pope Francis should defrock him immediately. Maybe someone will start a petition asking the Pope to take care of this.”

    “http://whatisupwiththesynod.com/index.php/2015/10/28/wherein-ann-barnhardt-justly-discriminates-against-fr-james-martin-essjay-who-is-a-raging-flaming-queen/”

    Where has this woman been all my life?!? This is freaking awesome!

    It is best she not reveal where she lives–the LGBT Mafia would put a contract out on her.

  18. Thanks Phillip.
    I made a comment on Ross’s rebuttal:

    Michael Dowd Venicel

    Ross is right! It is common sense and not liberal academic mumbo-jumbo designed to obscure the truth. Of course, liberal academics unfortunately no longer can even recognize the truth. Pity.

  19. “2 + 2 = 4.” Excuse me, but you cannot say that publicly unless you have at least an MA in Math. And not just an MA-you also have to be on the approved list of progressive mathematicians. Without doubt, whether or not you have a BA. MA, Or PhD in theology, you can know and understand heresy when you hear it and see it. Tell a believing Catholic sophomore at a truly Catholic university that “Jesus is not divine,” and they will know you are a heretic – even without completing a degree. Thomas Aquinas said that he who says fornication is not a sin is a heretic. These current “mercy bullies” who say Jesus got it wrong, St. Paul writing the inspired words of God got it wrong, and they – bless their hearts, flaunting degrees like a modern-day inquisition-have it right when they say “Go and sin on more” – these who call themselves “theologians” are heretics. Note: 1 Cor 6:9 includes “men who have sex with men”. Guy McClung, San Antonio, Texas

    CATECHETICAL INSTRUCTIONS OF ST THOMAS AQUINAS
    “THE SIXTH COMMANDMENT
    WHY ADULTERY AND FORNICATION MUST BE AVOIDED

    Thus, God forbids adultery both to men and women. Now, it must be known that, although some believe that adultery is a sin, yet they do not believe that simple fornication is a mortal sin. Against them stand the words of St. Paul: “For fornicators and adulterers God will judge.” And: “Do not err: neither fornicators, . . . nor adulterers, nor the effeminate, nor liers with mankind shall possess the kingdom of God.”[12] But one is not excluded from the kingdom of God except by mortal sin; therefore, fornication is a mortal sin.

    But one might say that there is no reason why fornication should be a mortal sin, since the body of the wife is not given, as in adultery. I say,however, if the body of the wife is not given, nevertheless, there is given the body of Christ which was given to the husband when he was sanctified in Baptism. If, then, one must not betray his wife, with much more reason must he not be unfaithful to Christ: “Know you not that your bodies are the members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them the members of a harlot? God forbid!”[13] It is heretical to say that fornication is not a mortal sin.”

  20. Guy McClung.

    Mercy bullies…spot on description!

    Hell is a fabrication of ancient writers… at least that’s what they must believe, these mercy bullies. If they only realized that the doctrine of hell is real, they might “straighten up and fly right.”

  21. Philip-And one of those “ancient writers” they are correcting happens to be . . .drum roll, angels bow, devils cringe, . . .God Himself!

  22. Am I wrong in thinking that the U. S. bishops are mistaken in their interpreting of the motto they are using for supporting “comprehensive immigration reform” – Mt 25; 35? “For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me.”

    See the following footnote in my Catholic bible, The New American Bible 1989-1990 Edition, from which the bishops’ quote comes from.

    “Mt. 25; 31-46 : The conclusion of the discourse, which is peculiar to Mt, portrays the final judgment that will accompany the parousia. Although often called a ‘parable,’ it is not really such, for the only parabolic elements are the depiction of the ‘Son of Man’ as ‘a shepherd’ and of ‘the righteous’ and the wicked as ‘sheep and goats’ respectively (32-33). The criterion of judgment will be the deeds of mercy that have been done for the ‘least of Jesus’ ‘brothers’ (40). A DIFFICULT AND IMPORTANT QUESTION IS THE IDENTIFICATION OF THESE ‘LEAST BROTHERS.’ ARE THEY ALL PEOPLE WHO HAVE SUFFERED HUNGER, THIRST, ETC. (35,36) OR A PARTICULAR GROUP OF SUCH SUFFERERS? (my emphasis) Scholars are divided in their response and arguments can be made for either side. BUT leaving aside the problem of what the traditional material that Mathew edited may have meant, IT SEEMS THAT A STRONGER CASE CAN BE MADE FOR THE VIEW THAT IN THE EVANGELIST’S SENSE THE SUFFERS ARE CHRISTIANS; PROBABLY CHRISTIAN MISSIONARIES WHOSE SUFFERINGS WERE BROUGHT UPON THEM BY THEIR PREACHING OF THE GOSPEL. THE CRITERION OF JUDGMENT FOR ‘ALL THE NATIONS’ IS THEIR TREATMENT OF THOSE WHO HAVE BORNE TO THE WORLD THE MESSAGE OF JESUS, AND THIS MEANS ULTIMATELY THEIR ACCEPTANCE OR REJECTION OF JESUS HIM SELF; cf10, 40, ‘WHOEVER RECEIVES YOU, RECEIVES ME.'” (my emphasis. Phrases set off by ‘ marks were words italicized in the footnote.

    “Illegal aliens,” their legal name in the law, are not Christian missionaries coming to spread the word of God. How in the world could the bishops be so wrong in using that bible verse on this issue? And why?

    I think one of several other biblical supports for the footnote interpretation above besides the one given (Mt. 10, 40) is Lk. Chapter 10 – “The Mission of the Seventy-two.” Lk 10; 1: “After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others whom he sent ahead of him in pairs to every town and place he intended to visit. v4 Carry no money bag, no sack, no sandals; and greet no one along the way. v5. Into whatever house you enter, first say, ‘Peace to this household.” v6 If a peaceful person lives there, your peace will rest on him; but if not, it will return to you. v7 Stay in the same house and eat and drink what is offered to you….” Jesus sent out 72 in pairs telling them to take no supplies with them, therefore depending on people in places Jesus sent them to, to show care for their coming to witness to them, care they give in response to God’s touching them.

  23. I’m all in favor of feeding and clothing illegals until we deport them back from whence they came.

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