Sandro Magister at his blog Chiesa speculates on how great a disaster Assisi II will be:
ROME, September 18, 2016 – The memorable encounter in Assisi, thirty years ago, between John Paul II and men of all religions (see photo) was perhaps the only moment of disagreement between the holy Polish pope and his absolutely trusted chief of doctrine at the time, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who didn’t even go.
Ratzinger himself recalls this in his book-length interview published in recent days: “He knew,” he says, “that I was following a different approach.”
But now that Pope Francis, the successor to both, is preparing to replicate that event in Assisi on September 20, the contrast is reemerging even stronger than before.
A dialogue among the religions on an equal footing – Ratzinger has in fact warned even after his resignation of the papacy – would be “lethal for the Christian faith.” Because every religion “would be reduced to an interchangeable symbol” of a God assumed to be equal for all:
Naturally Jorge Mario Bergoglio does not identify with this kind of egalitarian dialogue, nor has he ever thought that the Catholic Church should give up preaching the Gospel to every creature.
But some of his actions and words have effectively bolstered such tendencies, starting with his definition of proselytism as “solemn foolishness,” without ever saying how this is to be distinguished from genuine mission. There are no few missionaries on the frontiers, having spent a lifetime preaching and baptizing, who now feel betrayed in the name of a dialogue that makes almost any conversion useless.
Also with other Christians, Protestant and Orthodox, Francis moves at a different pace compared to his predecessors.
While for example Benedict XVI encouraged and facilitated the return to the Catholic Church of Anglicans in disagreement with the “liberal” pivot of their Church, Francis does not, he prefers that they keep to their own home, as revealed by two Anglican bishops who are his friends, Gregory Venables and Tony Palmer, whom he discouraged from becoming Catholic:
But it has been above all a brief video from January of this year, released on a large scale in ten languages, that has most given the idea of a surrender to syncretism, to the equating of all the religions:
In it, Francis urges prayer together with men of every faith, for the love of peace. And along with him, in fact, appear a Buddhist, a Jew, a Muslim, with their respective symbols, all on equal terms. The pope says: “Many seek God and find God in different ways. In this broad spectrum of religions there is only one certainty for us: we are all children of God.”
Nice words, but in effect not in keeping with those of the New Testament and in particular of the Gospel of John, according to which all men are creatures of God, but the only ones who become his “children” are those who believe in Jesus Christ.
In Assisi, on September 20, Francis will again find himself beside Buddhists, Jews, Muslims, and still others. And it is likely that his speech will be more circumspect than in the video.
But there is an impact of the images that will be difficult to contain and rationalize. It is that which has been extolled by many since 1986 as the “spirit of Assisi,” a formula that Ratzinger always sought in vain to defuse, as cardinal and pope, so that it would be taken in a manner opposite to how so many understand it, meaning not in the “syncretistic” and “relativistic” sense:
Go here to read the rest. The Catholic Church is either, as she has always taught, the True Faith, or she is not. Popes engaging in this type of vapid ecumenism undermine this central teaching.