PopeWatch: Prediction




Sandro Magister at his blog Chiesa gives us a prediction as to what will occur when the Synod resumes:




ROME, January 23, 2015 – One year ago Pope Francis gathered the cardinals for two days behind closed doors, to tackle questions on the family. And they were a fiery couple of days.

Next month he will bring them together again, this time to discuss the reform of the curia, and here too there will be a battle.

Because many contrasting ideas of reform have sprung up, at least as many as the brains of the nine cardinals who advise the pope, and some of them are even unpresentable. Like that of placing under a yet-to-be constituted dicastery of justice the various institutions and levels of the Vatican judicial system, including the apostolic penitentiary, which judges in the internal forum. With a horrible violation, if it were implemented, of the division between the legislative, executive, and judicial powers that is the prerogative of modern states from Montesquieu onward.

In fact, Francis has taken his time. He has said that he will not put the wraps on reform before 2016. And meanwhile he is proceeding like a general of the Jesuits, deciding himself on what is most urgent for him, in spite of the acclaimed collegiality of his governance.

In presenting his Christmas greetings to the heads of the curia, he slapped them in the face with a catastrophic diagnosis of their “illnesses,” listing fifteen of them, each more abject than the one before. But if one then looks at the few removals and promotions that the pope has made so far, the results are stunning.

The most illustrious of the defenestrated is Cardinal Raymond L. Burke, a great canonist, whose competency and moral uprightness are recognized even by his adversaries.

While the most incredible of the promotions is that Monsignor Battista Ricca, called back to Rome years ago from the diplomatic service after he had caused scandal in three different nunciatures, the last in Montevideo where he had brought his lover, but who then experienced a miraculous career revival as director of the two Roman residences of Via della Scrofa and of Santa Marta, and above all as a friend of many cardinals and bishops accommodated there from around the world, including the one who today is pope and has made him prelate of the IOR, his trusted man at the Vatican bank.

So far there has not been the least follow-up to the proposal that Bergoglio had brought out in the spring before last: to overthrow in the curia that “gay lobby” which he had found living and thriving there.

But more than in the curia, it is with the synod of bishops that this pontificate is innovating.

Francis has made it an almost permanent structure, giving free rein to discussions that previous popes had closed, like that of communion for the divorced and remarried, and most notably on whether or not to admit second marriages.

The result has been a fiery battle between opposing sides, with the bishops of the “peripheries” above all, especially of Africa and Eastern Europe, as intransigent opponents both of divorce and of the recognition of homosexual unions.

But in the end, after the synodal session of next October, it will be the pope who decides, as an absolute monarch, and he has taken care to reiterate this by citing the code of canon law.

His clear sympathies are for the progressive wing, led by the German cardinals, and for the tolerant practice of the Orthodox Churches of the East, which already bless second marriages.

But Francis says he is also fascinated by Paul VI and continues to present as a model of prophetic courage the encyclical “Humanae Vitae,” with which that pope condemned contraception and approved only natural methods for the regulation of births.

He did so once again in Manila a few days ago, while remarking however that Paul VI also “expressed compassion for specific cases and he taught confessors to be particularly compassionate for particular cases.”

And this is what he will probably end up doing.

Francis will hold firm, in words, the Catholic doctrine of indissolubility, and at the same time will encourage bishops and the clergy to have “pastoral,” or practical, compassion and understanding for failed and remade marriages.

Paul VI, who was proclaimed blessed on the concluding day of the last synod, brought a flood of criticism upon himself with “Humanae Vitae,” from outside and inside the Church.

For Francis the opposite could occur, with his giving apparent satisfaction to both intransigents and innovators.

Many have predicted that this will occur, but PopeWatch is not so sure. PopeWatch is not certain that the Pope will attempt to alter the teaching of the Church when it comes to communion for those in adulterous marriages, but PopeWatch is certain that Pope Francis is very unpredictable.  What PopeWatch does believe is that Pope Francis raised this issue for a reason and that he has a goal he wishes to obtain via the Synod.  PopeWatch also believes that the Pope was surprised by the amount of opposition that he received at the first session of the Synod.  What this adds up to for the future, PopeWatch will leave to sharper minds and/or bolder spirits.

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  1. “For Francis the opposite could occur, with his giving apparent satisfaction to both intransigents and innovators.”

    I don’t say this lightly, but Magister is whistling past the graveyard, trying to find a best result for orthodoxy. But his worry is very, very clear.

    I don’t see how the Pope’s constant tub-thumping for “mercy” (however separated from Christ’s actual words), his berating of those who hold to the law and repeated invocations of the “God of surprises” augur for anything other than the imposition of the Kasper proposal. Throw in his explicit reference to his papal authority, his high-profile pro-Kasper appointments and elevations (Cupich in Chicago and Dew in NZ), his order to leave the rejected paragraphs in the Synodal document and the confidence of the Hun inner circle, and voila–the pieces have fallen into place. A schism-level event is bounding our way.

  2. Dale–I regrettably agree with your assessment. The bill of particulars grows. Recent comments by Cardinal Cupich and Cardinal Maradiaga may provide further insight.

  3. From speaking about this problemon the flight back from WYD, to his first Angelus praising Kasper, to him manipulating the Synod, our Pope and our Cross has made it clear than major changes will occur during his reign.

    He is very sympathetic to the malign praxis of the eastern heretical schismatics and so one thinks it likely we will ape them before relaxing all strictures against sodomites and then moving on to imposing the dispensing of Holy Communion to protestant heretics and on and on.

    There is not one singe thing mortal man can do to stop him but, thankfully, God raised up a great early Father/Saint, St Vincent of Lerins who taught us that such troubles that are now befalling us is the way in which God tests if we love Him.

    O, and the great Saint also taught that the most religious are those who are the first to oppose novelties (hmm, what does that say about our Pope and our Cross?) and he also thought that if even the entire church went wiggy (ok, not his word) we are to stick with antiquity.

    So, seeing as how from antiquity up to this very day Communion has been refused to adulterers, there is simply no way for a real man to succor what surely seems to be coming down the progressive pike – communion for adulterers.

    The Pope will do as he desires, for it is clear he has no interest in defending and teaching the Faith and strengthening his brethren, and so one ought get too worked up about all of this but,rather, continue to have fun in one’s life and keep alive the Faith in the domestic church and wait on the Lord for even if this abomination is visited upon us for a while, it is doomed to a future of being overturned at some future point.

    O, and to think MJ was once one of those who first supported the idea that one could impose a praxis that did not drain substance from Doctrine; in this instance, it is impossible to cleave the two for as Fr Hunwicke pointed out, Jesus is both Love and Law and, thus Doctrine and Praxis must remain cleaved.

  4. a tacit blessing of divorce and adultery, mercy! Why did Jesus waste His breath? What practical reason exists for doing these things that have failed to fill the pews in Protestant churches? Will they accept the Pope now that he suspends all church law according to his whimsy? What do we expect from heretical Jesuits? Chastisement is what we are getting.

  5. Just remove “divorced and remarried” from the question at hand and put in child abuse, racism, oppressing the poor, or any other serious sin.

    If the Pope keeps the doctrine but allows/ tells the church to ignore this serious sin he will be teaching all of us that we can pretend we believe a doctrine but can completely ignore it in practice.

    Sounds like a Nancy Pelosi kind of world……………………

  6. . Kevin spoke my mind. How can a firm purpose of amendment be part of Penance for all except those who are exceptions to having a firm purpose of amendment prior to receiving. The teenager or Catholic college student involved in sex outside marriage will say to himself that he also need not have the firm purpose of amendment. The older person who flirts outside their marriage need not let it go…..he or she also is an exception to the firm purpose of amendment. Unlike most here, on a lesser issue, I for years have seen the two previous Popes as fallible innovators of a bad sort on the death penalty which innovation will get murder victims killed into the future decades.
    But I’m still shocked in that the Eucharist is involved here and God kills for sacrilege not only in the OT ( Uzzah, Achan, the sons of Heli, the descendants of Jeconiah etc.) but in Acts 12 and Acts 5 for sacrilege…Herod and then Ananias and Saphirra respectively.
    The Magisterium is only infallible when they live up to the requirements of infallibility. The pan infallibility I see on the Catholic internet…implied often…is the result of groups liking John Paul too much for his alignment with their pet area or liking Benedict for liturgy but not noticing that he said in Verbum Domini 42 that the herem were really sins and thus not ordered by God as Scripture repeatedly says.
    The over admiration of the two previous Popes turned into pan infallibility. Now the chickens might be coming home to roost. Don’t worry. That which is non infallible can be overturned by a future Pope. In 1455 Pope Nicholas V gave Portugal the right to despoil and enslave inter alia “pagans” wheresoever found in Dum Diversas and in Romanus Pontifex mid fourth large paragraph. Three subesequent Popes agreed in writing.
    In 1537 Pope Paul III overturned them in Sublimus Dei. But 82 years of damage was done and actually kept running in the real world but Sublimus Dei won in the very long run.

  7. I can’t imagine that anyone would go through an annulment process and have their second “marriage” convalidated if being in a 2nd marriage wasn’t sinful enough to restrict communion. It is a wholesale repudiation of the adulterous nature of these “unions.” In October I began feeling that if nothing holds the line in this area, then there is nothing, and Catholics who have followed Christ’s teachings for 2000 years have been fools.

  8. The Catholic Church is every saint in heaven. The “antiquity” of the Church Fathers cannot be rejected, because the Church Fathers are the Church, the Church Triumphant, the saints in heaven. The Church Militant and the Church Suffering are included with the Church Triumphant and are called the Catholic Church. Pope Francis needs to join.

  9. The Pope and the German Cardinal$ had better write their plans in pencil-God has the eraser. And they should tell God their schemes with a smile, because He will be laughing. As for out and out open denial of doctrine, so many slumbering need a wake up call and perhaps a Pope and/or Cardinals who proclaim what Jesus did wrong and how He spoke mistakenly about His Church will set off their alarms. Just as the current American Tyrant is term-limited, God always and eventually term-limits those in the hierarchy. Guy McClung, San Antonio

  10. Look, there are two competing themes here. First, the Pope, the last time he discussed communion for the divorced and remarried, in his interview in La Nacion, said nothing at all about letting them take communion. Rather, he focused on other things that could be done. I take this as a sign that he is dropping the Kasper proposal. Second, it simply is true that many modern marriages are undertaken with no thought at all of having children, or even staying together for all time. So marriage has become severely degraded today, and many marriages may be simply invalid as far as the church is concerned. The Pope needs to figure out how to handle this problem without ENDORSING this loose practice of marriage.

  11. Has this so called author now turned into a psychic???? It’s bad enough when the secular press misquote, etc. when it comes to the Pope. Now we have someone who should know better taking on the rule of trying to out think the Pontiff; give it a rest, no one cares about your predictions.

  12. since I am convinced that francis knows far more about the faith and what the Church needs than any one who posts on the internet, I choose to remain loyal to Christ’s vicar.

    engaging in speculation and gossip is not a sign of maturity or understanding. such behaviors are highly unlikely to lead souls to Christ.

  13. Read Gal. 1, 6-9 ; ” I am amazed that you are so quickly forsaking the one who called you by the grace for a different gospel, (not that there is another). But there are some who are disturbing you and wish to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let that one be accursed! As we have said before, and now I say again, if anyone preaches to you a gospel other than the one you received, let that one be accursed! And in 1 Cor. 27 – 28: “Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord unworthily will have to answer for the body and blood of the Lord. A person should examine himelf, and so eat the bread and dronk the cup”. The rest are empty words contrary to the teaching of Christ in the gospels and the Church for two thousand years.

  14. Sampo I had never thought of that- about how many marriages today might be invalid today just because of people’s lack of understanding of marriage as it is defined by the Church- they may not enter full, free, open to life. You know it is shocking how much people do not know- so many “duh” moments when you talk with people about our Faith.
    Still – the problem that Thomas More faced was the authority of the Church decision on the matter.

  15. “engaging in speculation and gossip is not a sign of maturity or understanding. such behaviors are highly unlikely to lead souls to Christ.”

    Certainly approving Communion for Catholics in adulterous marriages will lead no one at all to Christ.

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