For a faithful catholic, ecumenism is the effort, in charity and in faith, to bring nonbelievers to the Catholic Church; the Church that is, in the words of the Catechism, “ . . .the sole Church of Christ,” [Catechism of the Catholic Church, 811, 816]; the “ . . . one Church,” [Id., 814]; the “ . . one and only church of God,” [Id., 817]. This is true ecumenism.
Professor Alan Montefiore recognizes another type of ecumenism for those of different religions, even for those whose religions profess dogmas and beliefs that explicitly contradict each other. (Alan Montifiore, “Ecumenical Movements and Truth,” Midwest Studies in Philosophy, Volume XXI, p.p. 145-158; 1997). For him, believers of different religions – to achieve an ecumenical goal – can accept that all believers are on an “equally valid path to religious fulfillment.” [Id., p. 145]. Religious truth, on this view, is relative, not absolute. This is based on an erroneous “equalization of truths.” This is false ecumenism.
The False Ecumenism Program
In practical reality, the view described here as “false ecumenism,” requires that proponents of the various religions who want to engage in fruitful ecumenism must jettison, or deny, one or some of their beliefs to create, a “new” religion with a “new and common ecumenical theology, a universal theology.” This false ecumenism cannot be based on any agreement for the ecumenical partners to simply ignore dogmas and doctrines. Without doctrine-defeating , dogma-destroying ecumenical metanoia, no new religion can be achieved.
The “Problem” Of Truth – No Problem
For Professor Montefiore, various beliefs of the ecumenical partners can, and often do, exhibit “mutual incompatibility.” Montefiore calls this the “problem of truth.” To achieve the new religion, there must be an approach beyond “mutual toleration,” because, in reality, principled “mutual respect” is not really possible.
If, however, one believes, or is committed to the belief, that everyone’s best hope, of virtue and/or salvation (however exactly they may be understood) must depend on the doctrinal nature of their religious commitment, one is bound to find a prima facie difficulty in the way of according equal respect to the commitments of those whose doctrines or practices one believes to be in some way mistaken. If I believe that my tradition provides the only true account of the nature of God and of what He requires from His creatures, it would be strange indeed if I did not also believe that it was of vital importance to others that they should come to accept that account – strange, though not, perhaps, logically inconceivable. (Id., p. 150).
It may be that a true believer of one religion can separate the believer of another religion from his or her beliefs (as some do in loving the sinner, hating the sin), but in real life, says Professor Montefiore, there can be a “tension” in trying to do this. This true believer who also wants an ecumenical solution to the disunity among religions must confront an inescapable conclusion. What there is about the other’s beliefs that is “genuinely incompatible” with the true beliefs “must be false.” (Id., p. 155).
To achieve the ecumenical goal, the goal of false ecumenism, this tension is to be resolved not by bringing the other believer to the true belief, but by compromising, rejecting, changing, or denying true beliefs:
If, then, full and equal respect for one’s ecumenical partner implies a recognition that their own spirituality and their own “way to God” is as religiously valid as one’s own, one may have in all consistency to accept the prospect of having to revise certain of one’s own basic and Jong-standing beliefs. (The same will, of course, be true for one’s partners as well.) It is not likely to be easy for It is not likely to be easy for all those concerned to admit that their ecumenism harbors within it an acceptance of the principle that there may be more than one equally valid expression of the recognition of God, more than one equally acceptable form of His worship, more than one superficially incompatible but in fact equally valid diffraction of the one hidden Truth, but this, it does seem, must in the last resort be the inner sense of any really serious contemporary ecumenical movement. (Id., pp. 155-156).
New Framework = New Paradigm
For faithful catholics, Professor Montefiore proposes that a “serious” effort at (false) ecumenism requires and demands a “new framework” within which even beliefs such as the Father’s sending of His Son Jesus Christ – alone – to redeem us must be rejected:
Their ecumenical commitment would seem, then, to include the perhaps initially hidden further commitment to the search for a new framework of discourse of God, a framework in the sense that it would somehow have to allow for, or make persuasively intelligible, an account of “God’s” necessary intervention in the ongoing contingencies of human history as having taken place at more than just one place and time and in more than just one way.(Id., pp. 156-157; emphasis added).
Such a “new framework” is a new paradigm. This is “paradigm” in the sense of that term in T.S. Kuhn’s celebrated work, The Structure Of Scientific Revolutions (1962) and the subsequent development of paradigm theory over the last half century.
Jorge Bergolgio’s New Paradigm For Catholicism In Toto – Doctrine, Teaching, & Dogma
Unfortunately, we have of late heard this “new paradigm” talk from Jorge Bergolgio and those who attempt to further his heresies. Bergoglian Cardinal Parolin has referred to the “new paradigm that Pope Francis is carrying out. Bergolgian Cardinal Cupich has proclaimed that the new paradigm is “nothing short of revolutionary,” and a “forced paradigm shift.”
There is no doubt that Jorge Bergolgio’s “new paradigm” has served as the model framework and conceptual underpinning for the assertion of heresies and the attempt to proclaim them as “magisterial” teachings. These facts will not be discussed here, except for one comment.
Noted theologians, church historians, canon law experts, scripture scholars, bishops and cardinals have stated that Jorge Bergolgio has asserted heresies. At the top of the list is the new statement of the centuries old “mercy heresy.” The one comment is this – Jorge Bergolgio appears to have stated heresies. In response to the faithful souls who have requested him to explain what he has said so that it may be clear that there is no heresy, his response has been silence, and in his prolonged silence there is contempt for those who seek the truth. This is not what a pastoral shepherd of souls does. If he has not proclaimed heresy, in his silence he is not saving a single confused sheep.
Jorge Bergolgio’s heresies, which make ecclesial sense only within the meaning-giving role of his new heretical paradigm, are precisely what Professor Montefiore says is required for (false) ecumenism, and for the making of a new religion.
Curiously, more recently, there has been little chatter rom Bergoglian heretics about the new Bergoglian “paradigm.” Perhaps this is because the true significance of a new paradigm has been made too crystal clear by one scholar and commentator after another. A new paradigm has nothing to do with correct and permitted doctrinal development. A new paradigm demands the overthrow of the old paradigm and the vehement denial of beliefs accepted under the old paradigm. Under accepted paradigm theory, a new paradigm for catholic dogma and doctrine can be nothing else but heresy.
How the Catholic Church can (Falsely) Ecumenate Successfully
The Catechism quotes the centuries-old church teaching that “Ourside the Church there is no salvation,” and notes that it is “often repeated by the Church Fathers,” citing specifically Cyrprian (Catechism, 846).
For faithful catholics, Professor Montefiore asks this question:
So what becomes of the belief, to which orthodox Catholics at any rate were traditionally committed, that extra ecclesia, nullus salus – that outside the Church there can be no salvation? Or to the many functionally equivalent analogues of this belief? (Montefiore, p. 151)
Professor Montefiore, writing in 1997, had no idea that a man wearing papal white in the Roman Catholic Church would reject true ecumenism and provide the “new framework,” the paradigm that has spawned the heresies that make false ecumenism possible for the Bergoglians.
Professor Montefiore concludes his article by saying that any ecumenical partner, [even one such as the Catholic Church], must engage in:
. . . an acceptance of the sacrifice of any traditional claims to uniquely valid conceptualizations of religious truth, of uniquely true prophets or of uniquely appropriate symbolizations or myths. (Id., p. 158)
None of this is a problem for the Bergoglians.
Jorge Bergolgio and his fellow Bergoglian heretics are now announcing that “ecumenism is not optional.” Any putative “ecumenical partner” seeking to ecumeniate and negotitate with the Bergoglians would do well to realize that they have no problem asserting heresies, which in many ways is worse than dishonesty, worse than lying.