PopeWatch: Special Edition

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  1. “We shall go before a higher tribunal – a tribunal where a Judge of infinite goodness, as well as infinite justice, will preside, and where many of the judgments of this world will be reversed.” Thomas Meagher

  2. After reading this I envisioned a scene from Raiders of the Lost Ark. The guardian of the chalice scene.

    “Choose wisely.”

    For the Pope’s sake, he better pick the correct chalice.

  3. . The married priests doesn’t shock me since some Eastern Rite Catholics priests married under the Pope for centuries. Converts need to know that this has nothing to do with religious order priests who will always have three or more vows and who are seeking perfection linked to celibacy, poverty, obedience. It has to do with diocesan priests in parishes though religious order priests are in some parishes also. Pope Benedict was firstly a diocesan priest but Francis was always a Jesuit priest. Pope Benedict may well have a healthy bank account from his book sales whereas Francis would have to give such book sale money to his order…the Jesuits.
    It’s the remarrieds receiving which is the major problem unless there is an explanation and great restriction that we are not seeing. For example does it end up applying to strictly those who were turned down by the external forum ( the annullment court) but attest to their parish that they know the court in question was dead wrong in their conscience and they sign an attestation to that effect in their parish so that they are receiving in good faith conscience based on the fact that infallibility does not cover annullment court judgements. I am surmising. If it goes through by vote as simply let each remarried and not annulled receive the Eucharist regardless of having even tried the external forum or regardless of conscience
    then it is unimaginable as a valid development….because then the firm purpose of amendment is jettisoned for everyone as an essential part of Penance which is absurd.

  4. “The married priests doesn’t shock me since some Eastern Rite Catholics priests married under the Pope for centuries.”
    Latin Rite has not and that is the vast majority of Catholics. Additionally an unmarried Eastern Rite priest may not marry, and an Eastern Rite priest who is widowed may not marry again. Eastern Rite Bishops are chosen from the ranks of Eastern Rite monks who are celibate. The priesthood in the West has been associated with celibacy as a requirement for a thousand years and as an ideal for 1700 years.

  5. Donald,
    A second factor though is the entrance and acceptance by Rome of the married Anglicans like Fr. Longenecker and their families living right along side the unmarried diocesan priests only some of whom may then want marriage at all…but an understandable rethink for some.

  6. bill bannon and Donald: That Father Longeneker became Catholic after he was married and an Anglican priest would invoke the Pauline Privilege. (Coming into the Catholic church as a new creation). Eastern Rite priests must be married when they are accepted into Holy Orders and may not marry after Holy Orders. If secular Catholic priests want to marry they would have to become laicized first.
    “Who knows if what Senor Crespo is saying is the truth. Is there anyone, however, who would be surprised if the Pope did tell him this?”
    Where is Christ in all this? Is Pope Francis inventing remission of sins without repentance? His “go to confession” relying on the integrity of the ill formed conscience of the people is not helpful. “and that repentance and the remission of sins should be preached in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem” Luke 24: 47-49.

  7. I have two observations to make about this story:
    1) What kind of friend is this Crespo fellow if he runs to the press with his
    version of what transpired in a private conversation with his trusting child-
    hood friend? I think if I were in the Pope’s shoes, Mr. Crespo would be
    downgraded from a “let’s-have-a-heart-to-heart-talk” friend to a “you’ll
    maybe get a Christmas card and that’s it, and don’t call me” sort of friend.
    2) The pundits were saying that this Pope was selected because the College
    of Cardinals wanted someone who could reform the curia. Turns out that
    the #1 priority of this pontificate isn’t reform of the curia, or addressing the
    decline in Catholic demographics, or rethinking how the Church can engage
    with an increasingly hostile zeitgeist— no, the #1 priority of this
    pontificate (supposedly) is to overturn Catholic dogma regarding the
    indissolubility of the Sacrament of marriage. Really? That’s the
    most pressing issue on the Church’s plate?

  8. To me the married priests seems like we are opening up a whole can of worms. There are financial considerations, such as paying a wage and benefits to support a family. Right now a priest can be transferred with very little notice to wherever he is needed. That isn’t as easy with families involved. We will end up with divorced priests, who certainly will not be able to get annulments. And of course you have the people who think this would have stopped the sex abuse scandal, even though over 80% of the attackers were homosexual priests and the most common pedophiles are married men. But we’ll do anything not to admit that Vatican II was a disaster that is killing the Church.

  9. I am not certain that I would give credence to what this Oscar Crespo says. But no matter what, the Pope cannot overturn Christ’s teaching on marriage. Priestly celibacy may be a different matter, but even that has its roots in St. Paul’s advice that he wished those who devote themselves to the Gospel to be unmarried (1 Corinthians 7) though he did say in 1st Timothy 3, “Let the bishop be the husband of one wife…”

  10. St. Bridget of Sweden wrote in her, Revelations, that Our Lord once appeared to her and discussed with her the ordination of married men in the Latin rite: she says, that He told her that the Pope has the power to permit this, but that the Pope who does this, let him know, that He shall surly damn to Hell for all eternity.

    How much more then would a pope merit damnation for allowing ordained men to marry or the giving of the sacraments to those in mortal sin?

    Francis, you don’t want to go there, even if you don’t have the Faith…

  11. Ah, I get it.

    So the end of priestly celibacy will be offered along with Holy Communion to those living in sin (rather than actually reconciling them to Christ and His Church).

    The temptation to abandon celibacy and promote “sexual equality for all” will be the bait, the enticement to ignore the evil of priests intentionally giving Holy Communion to those NOT in the state of grace and disobeying Tradition.

    Once this is done, there is not distance at all to be travelled to opening Holy Communion to EVERYONE, regardless of religious affiliation or state of grace. Heck, let people bring their pets to church so that Rover can have Jesus too!

    Disgusting. And evil. Completely evil. And completely against Christ, His True Church, His Gospel and His Divine Revelation of Himself to us in Sacred Scripture, Tradition and the Teaching Authority of Peter and the Apostles.

    state of grace to receive Him.

  12. . Private revelations of saints are not binding on Catholics. It might be good to state that Brother Alexis as you disseminate them. Why in the world would the Latin rite be radically different than the eastern rite as to the morals of a priest being married.

  13. A priest whom I greatly admire told a story about touring a concentration camp — I don’t remember if it was Dachau or Auschwitz– and his tour guide, a Lutheran minister, pointed out that there were more Catholic Priests killed by the Nazis than there were Lutheran ministers. Thre reason for this, according to the Lutheran tour guide, was that the Nazis didn’t have to kill the Lutherans to keep them from proclaiming the Truth. All they had to do was threaten to kill their families. That story struck a chord with me.
    And anyways, didn’t Paul have something to say about the divided heart?

  14. Ernst,
    St. Thomas More had Elizabeth, Cicely, Margaret, and John and probably the hope of grandchildren by the time he was beheaded. I’m sure the married martyr roles are huge in Catholicism.
    But he and they had something that German Lutherans did not have….the Sacrament of Confirmation which your anecdote neglects and the Sacrament of the Eucharist.

  15. Judy wrote, “There are financial considerations…”

    Indeed there are. As William Cobbett wrote of Bishop Broenlow North:-
    “[I]f the late Bishop of Winchester had lived in Catholic times, he could not have had a wife, and that he could not have had a wife’s sister, to marry Mr. EDMUND POULTER, in which case, I may be allowed to think it possible, that Mr. POULTER would not have quitted the bar for the pulpit, and that he would not have had the two livings of Meon-Stoke and Soberton, and a Prebend besides; that his son BROWNLOW POULTER would not have had the two livings of Buriton and Petersfield; that his son CHARLES POULTER would not have had the three livings of Alton, Binstead and Kingsley; that his son-in-law OGLE would not have had the living of Bishop’s Waltham; and that his son-in-law HAYGARTH would not have had the two livings of Upham and Durley. If the Bishop had lived in Catholic times, he could not have had a son, CHARLES AUGUSTUS NORTH, to have the two livings of Alverstoke and Havant and to be a Prebend; that he could not have had another son, FRANCIS NORTH, to have the four livings of Old Alresford, Medstead, New Alresford, and St. Mary’s, Southampton, and to be, moreover, a Prebend and Master of St. Cross; that he could not have had a daughter to marry Mr. WiLLIAM GARNIER, to have the two livings of Droxford and Brightwell Baldwin, and to be a Prebend and a Chancellor besides; that he could not have had Mr. William Gamier’s brother, THOMAS GARNIER, for a relation, and this latter might not, then, have had the two livings of Aldingbourn and Bishop’s Stoke; that he could not have another daughter to marry Mr. THOMAS DE GREY, to have the four livings of Calbourne, Fawley, Merton, and Rounton, and to be a Prebend and also an Archdeacon besides! In short, if the late Bishop had lived in Catholic times, it is a little too much to believe, that these twenty-four Livings, five Prebends, one Chancellorship, one Archdeaconship, and one Mastership, worth perhaps, all together. more than twenty thousand pounds a-year [about £1.3 million or $1.93 million today], would have fallen to the ten persons above named.”

  16. A wise priest once told me that Satan’s main thrust is always upon the Eucharist and the priesthood that provides its existence.
    This attempt to desecrate the Eucharist by admitting unrepentant sinners to the feast does both. It is not of God. It is but a cunning attempt by the diabolical to elevate sin to the acceptable by ignoring it, in the twisted name of being pastoral.
    We are merely re-creating the sin of Adam and Eve by deciding for ourselves what is right and what is wrong. Perhaps worst–for we then have decided that nothing we do or want is wrong.

  17. “Is there anyone, however, who would be surprised if the Pope did tell him this?”

    Yep. Or, as another Catholic who read the story said:

    “What has Pope Francis said or done that would lead any unbiased observer to believe what is reported in today’s story is NOT true?”

  18. “A childhood friend of Pope Francis has claimed that he intends to overturn the centuries-old ban on Catholic priests from getting married and that he told a divorcee ‘living in sin’ that she could receive Holy Communion.
    The Pope considers the law on priestly celibacy ‘archaic’ and ‘not part of the doctrine of the Church’, according to the confidante.
    The friend also claimed the Argentinian-born pope also vowed to reform another Catholic rule which bars divorced people in new relationships from taking the Holy Communion, MailOnline can reveal.
    According to Oscar Crespo, Pope Francis said that changing the Catholic law which bars civil divorcees from taking a full part in church life is the ‘number one priority’ of his papacy.
    Who knows if what Senor Crespo is saying is the truth. Is there anyone, however, who would be surprised if the Pope did tell him this?”

    To many people this shows Pope Freancis being Christian and non-judgmental, as well as focusing on love. After all one of the concerns of the previous Pope was that marriage anulments were getting more difficult to be granted. The fact is there are many divorced Catholics who still want to be part of the Catholic church. The ban on Catholic priests getting married was implemented only a number of centuries ago and not from the beginning of Christianity and I know many more men would have become priests if it was not for the marriage ban. While being Conservative is important to many of the Catholic faithful. Personally I feel the church should be neither Conservative or Liberal, but love.

  19. Married or single, chastity rules. There was a pastor (name withheld) who raised the child of a single mother through college much to the complaint of his parishioners (who ought to have done it). The pastor carried the cross of the father of the child.

  20. Would love to see the protestant-wannabe, Catholic doctrine-hating Francis be the the first pope to convert to any of the feel-good versions of protestantism that suits his fancy. Vatican II was an absolute disaster for Catholics and now along comes this Jesuit leftist who’s trying to remake the Church in his image, and the teachings of Christ be damned. The absolute worst pope in the last 500 years. Imagine a pope more liked by protestants and cafeteria-Catholics than faithful Catholics. That is Francis in a nutshell and it’s not getting any better any time soon. Pray and pray a lot. Then pray some more.

  21. “The absolute worst pope in the last 500 years. Imagine a pope more liked by protestants and cafeteria-Catholics than faithful Catholics. That is Francis in a nutshell and it’s not getting any better any time soon.”

    Everyone is free to their opinions but I think the term “cafeteria-Catholics” is a little harsh. As Catholics we are the Catholic church, but we are also human individuals whose opinions cannot be exactly the same. Pope Francis has a difficult job and he seems to have critics everywhere. While some call him a Leftist, others have raised concerns how his right from priest in Argentina happened during a right-wing dictatorship

  22. Everyone is free to their opinions ….”
    No one is worried about one’s “opinions” or being diverse –that is the way God made the world.
    It is doctrine that is being corrupted in many areas inside the Church (filled with the “smoke of Satan” to quote Paul VI)
    Wear plaid or stripes to Mass-but please don’t reduce the truth of God –the immutable teachings of the Apostles” to mere opinions.

  23. “Please don’t reduce the truth of God –the immutable teachings of the Apostles” to mere opinions”.

    I am confused at the point I am seen as reducing “the truth of God” to mere opinions. Actually I come from an Irish Catholic who were very opposed to Vatican 2 and I remember in the 1970’s when there was a fear of the church losing its way. What the Pope needs is prayer and remember “no one knows what is in God’s plan”.

  24. James Charles, the reason you are receiving strongly worded feedback is that your definition of “Cafeteria Catholics” is quite different from most of us reading this blog. “Cafeteria” means to my mind selecting what Church law or dogma or Commandments to believe or obey and ignoring others.
    That is not opinion. Hard as it may be, one has to accept the full plate.

  25. Could it be that this close friend with his startling pronouncements is actually a papal shill? Throw out a controversial idea; meaure the strength of the pro or con reactions and then the pope himself speaks to a group and states what he really meant. An American politician’s m.o.

  26. In fairness to the divorced woman [who’s living with a new partner], she did say she wanted to go to confession [before receiving communion?] Does she mean to repent of her sin and separate from her partner? If so, then maybe the Pope is right – she may go and receive communion if she does leave her life of sin.

    The report also says:

    “But she claims she kept Francis’ message to herself, for fear of offending her priest and fellow churchgoers.

    “She said: ‘I still haven’t done them yet. I don’t feel comfortable, because of what other members of the community might think.

    “‘I’ve decided to wait until it’s official for every Catholic, not just for me. I don’t want it to be allowed just for me, I want it to be allowed for everyone.'”

    There’s hope.

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