PopeWatch: Intrinsic Evil

Pope Paul VI once famously said that the smoke of Satan had entered the Church.  One wonders what he would have thought of this report by Edward Pentin at National Catholic Register:

A reflection on Amoris Laetitia has been posted on the website of the Pontifical Academy for Life in which its author, a new member of the academy, proposes that the term “intrinsically evil” is outdated.

Hypothesizing on the moral theology of Amoris Laetitia and Pope Francis’ principle that “time is greater than space” mentioned in his 2013 apostolic exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, Professor Gerhard Höver argues that changes in perception, “namely, space and time,” have an “effect on specific theologies, such as the theological view of marriage and the family.”

The professor of moral theology at the University of Bonn, Germany, uses selected writings of St. Bonaventure and Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI to argue — quoting from Amoris Laetitia — against thinking that everything is “black and white” which results in closing off the “way of grace and of growth.”

He believes that the principle “time is greater than space” relates to an interplay between the eternal and temporal spheres, taking on a “moral-theological significance” that “affects the previous teaching about ‘intrinsically evil actions.’”

“It is not without reason that some have requested further clarification on this point,” he adds, referring to the second of the five dubia which asked the Pope whether, after Amoris Laetitia, one still needs to regard as valid “the existence of absolute moral norms that prohibit intrinsically evil acts and that are binding without exceptions.”

The Church currently teaches that intrinsically evil acts are always and everywhere wrong and immoral, regardless of intention or circumstances. This is because, in part, they do not bring one closer to God, and prevent the common good.

But Höver argues that the term “intrinsically evil” is too restricting as it fails to account for some “regularity” within “irregular” situations, ones which could be allowed if one abides by the principle that ‘time is greater than space.’ “If even only one element is defective, the consequence is ‘badness’ and (in this sense) also ‘irregularity,’” he says.  

“It seems theological reasons lead Pope Francis to refuse to go on accepting this restriction,” Höver continues. “This does not in the least dispute the necessity of calling oppositions and irregularities by their names, above all in cases of injustice and unfairness vis-à-vis other persons. But the Pope regards the path that has been taken hitherto as inadequate to cope with the differentness and complexity of the situations in which people stand or live.”

Go here to read the rest.  The current Vatican alternates between making old sins into no sins, and crafting new sins like not being an environut.  Isaiah summed up this papacy 28 centuries ago:


“Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!”

Isaiah 5:  20


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  1. The removal of the corpus from the Cross is within the grasp of this reasoning, “time is greater than space.” Grampa warned of slippery slopes. Seems to me Hover is preparing the slope with frozen water.
    Time is greater than space! Time suffering in Purgatory will prove his thesis.
    Isn’t it better to be obedient and spend no time in Purgatory and all time in Heaven. The removal of Christ from the Cross is a great victory for the Church of Mush. The chosen people fashioned their own God too, while Moses retreated to the Holy Mount. Upon his return all kinds of debauchery was taking place. Upon Christ’s return, will He find faith on earth?
    In the remnant Church He will.
    This new direction Pope Francis is leading the flock doesn’t compute.
    It is a wolf, not a good Shepard, who allows his hirelings to teach false doctrines, or tickles the ears with misleading retoric.
    Thanks PopeWatch.
    The times are challenging. Space too.

  2. So they’re now signaling that “sanctifying relative morality” is their next move in dismantling God’s Church here on earth.

  3. Without time we are nowhere. Without space we are nowhere. Time and space are our here and now. Let Pope Francis be the first one to step into this redefinition of TRUTH.

  4. “Time is greater than space” sounds like one of those things you come up with during a long evening of ingesting various chemicals.

  5. “There’s no such thing as black and white – Television!, it’s grey”
    – Actually, although pictures appear as shades of grey, the pixels are in reality, black and white.
    “Reality, there’s that dam word again Reality, we make our own Reality.”
    – No, in fact we don’t. Either something either is or it is not.
    “Facts, you and your dam Facts, your so Rigid.”

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