3.9.15

Cd. Cipriani (Aug. 30): "la Eucaristía exige estar en Gracia de Dios y en comunión con la Iglesia y el matrimonio es uno e indisoluble entre hombre y mujer”.

Cardenal Juan Luis Cipriani, Arzobispo de Lima y Primado del Perú, Aciprensa, 30/08/2015:

“No pensemos que el Sínodo va a inventar nada nuevo, la doctrina es la de siempre. [lo que se espera del Sínodo] “es confirmar toda la doctrina que siempre la Iglesia en una continuidad de sus enseñanzas ha mostrado, eso no cambiará nada”.

... desde el punto de vista pastoral, probablemente ante tanto divorcio y tanto problema matrimonial, tanta ruptura de la familia tengamos que dirigir un mayor esfuerzo para preparar mejor a los novios, para atender mejor los casos de personas en dificultades, pero en cualquier caso para reforzar la familia como una gran propuesta del mismo Dios”.

Creo yo que saldrá recuperada la familia, pero tendremos que poner más atención para abrir una mano de ayuda a tanta gente que vive en el divorcio, vive separada, pero no porque cambie la doctrina sino porque pongamos más esfuerzo en ayudarlos

... lo primero que hay que hacer es mejorar la preparación al matrimonio, (pues) mucha gente se casa con una superficialidad muy grande, se preocupa más del evento social”.

En segundo lugar, creo yo que la misma Iglesia tiene que hacer como más asequible la preparación, no poner una lista de dificultades para el que se quiere casar, sino facilitarle sobre todo a través de los laicos y de los matrimonios católicos, para que ellos sean los agentes que enseñan a esa juventud.

[Como tercer punto, el Primado del Perú subrayó la importancia de acompañar a los nuevos matrimonios, para que en sus primeros años] sientan en la experiencia de sus mayores el apoyo a sus dudas, a sus preocupaciones.

... la Iglesia habla de la oración, de la meditación de la palabra, del rezo del Rosario, creo yo que hay muchas maneras de pertenecer a esta familia de la Iglesia pero no queriendo violentar la tradición y el mandato de Cristo: que la Eucaristía exige estar en Gracia de Dios y en comunión con la Iglesia y que el matrimonio es uno e indisoluble entre hombre y mujer”.

2.9.15

Exame

"[A] divina Providência ... costuma com [sofrimentos, durezas e] guerras, purificar e castigar os costumes corrompidos dos homens. É a divina Providência que põe à prova a vida justa e louvável dos mortais com tais aflições, para, uma vez provada, ou a transferir para uma vida melhor, ou a reter nesta Terra para outros fins".

Santo Agostinho, De Civitate, I.1

31.8.15

The spread of heresy

Wilhelm, J. (1910). Heresy. In The Catholic Encyclopedia:
"The growth of heresy, like the growth of plants, depends on surrounding influences, even more than on its vital force...
  • The first requisite for success is a forceful man, not necessarily of great intellect and learning, but of strong will and daring action. Such were the men who in all ages have given their names to new sects.

  • The second requisite is accommodation of the new doctrine to the contemporary mentality, to social and political conditions.

  • The last, but by no means the least, is the support of secular rulers.
A strong man in touch with his time, and supported by material force, may deform the existing religion and build up a new heretical sect.

... Arianism is the first heresy that gained a strong footing in the Church and seriously endangered its very nature and existence. Arius appeared on the scene when theologians were endeavouring to harmonize the apparently contradictory doctrines of the unity of God and the Divinity of Christ. Instead of unravelling the knot, he simply cut it by bluntly asserting that Christ was not God like the Father, but a creature made in time. The simplicity of the solution, the ostentatious zeal of Arius for the defence of the "one God", his mode of life, his learning and dialectic ability won many to his side. In particular he was supported by the famous Eusebius of Nicomedia who had great influence on the Emperor Constantine. He had friends among the other bishops of Asia and even among the bishops, priests, and nuns of the Alexandrian province. He gained the favour of Constantia, the emperor's sister, and he disseminated his doctrine among the people by means of his notorious book which he called thaleia or 'Entertainment' and by songs adapted for sailors, millers, and travellers. (Addis and Arnold, "A Catholic Dictionary", 7th ed., 1905, 54.)

The Council of Nicaea anathematized the heresiarch, but its anathemas, like all the efforts of the Catholic bishops, were nullified by interference of the civil power. Constantine and his sister protected Arius and the Arians, and the next emperor, Constantius, assured the triumph of the heresy: the Catholics were reduced to silence by dire persecution. At once an internecine conflict began within the Arian pale, for heresy, lacking the internal cohesive element of authority, can only be held together by coercion either from friend or foe. Sects sprang up rapidly: they are known as Eunomians, Anomoeans, Exucontians, Semi-Arians, Acacians. The Emperor Valens (364-378) lent his powerful support to the Arians, and the peace of the Church was only secured when the orthodox Emperor Theodosius reversed the policy of his predecessors and sided with Rome. Within the boundaries of the Roman empire the faith of Nicaea, enforced again by the General Council of Constantinople (381), prevailed, but Arianism held its own for over two hundred years longer wherever the Arian Goths held sway: in Thrace, Italy, Africa, Spain, Gaul. The conversion of King Recared of Spain, who began to reign in 586, marked the end of Arianism in his dominions, and the triumph of the Catholic Franks sealed the doom of Arianism everywhere...

... The three elements of success possessed by Arianism reappear in Lutheranism and cause these two great religious upheavals to move on almost parallel lines. Luther was eminently a man of his people: the rough-hewn, but, withal sterling, qualities of the Saxon peasant lived forth under his religious habit and doctor's gown; his winning voice, his piety, his learning raised him above his fellows yet did not estrange him from the people: his conviviality, the crudities in his conversation and preaching, his many human weaknesses only increased his popularity. When the Dominican John Tetzel began to preach in Germany the indulgences proclaimed by Pope Leo X for those who contributed to the completion of St. Peter's Basilica in Rome, opposition arose on the part of the people and of both civil and ecclesiastical authorities. Luther set the match to the fuel of widespread discontent. He at once gained a number of adherents powerful both in Church and State; the Bishop of Würzburg recommended him to the protection of the Elector Frederick of Saxony. In all probability Luther started on his crusade with the laudable intention of reforming undoubted abuses. But his unexpected success, his impetuous temper, perhaps some ambition, soon carried him beyond all bounds set by the Church. By 1521, that is within four years from his attack on abuse of indulgences, he had propagated a new doctrine; the Bible was the only source of faith; human nature was wholly corrupted by original sin, man was not free, God was responsible for all human actions good and bad; faith alone saved; the Christian priesthood was not confined to the hierarchy but included all the faithful. The masses of the people were not slow in drawing from these doctrines the practical conclusion that sin was sin no longer, was, in fact, equal to a good work.

With his appeal to the lower instincts of human nature went an equally strong appeal to the spirit of nationality and greed. He endeavored to set the German emperor against the Roman pope and generally the Teuton against the Latin; he invited the secular princes to confiscate the property of the Church. His voice was heard only too well. For the next 130 years the history of the German people is a record of religious strife, moral degradation, artistic retrogression, industrial breakdown; of civil wars, pillage, devastation, and general ruin. The Peace of 1648 established the principle: Cujus regio illius et religio; the lord of the land shall be also lord of religion. And accordingly territorial limits became religious limits within which the inhabitant had to profess and practise the faith imposed on him by the ruler. It is worthy of remark that the geographical frontier fixed by the politicians of 1648 is still the dividing line between Catholicism and Protestantism in Germany. The English Reformation, more than any other, was the work of crafty politicians. The soil had been prepared for it by the Lollards or Wycliffites, who at the beginning of the sixteenth century were still numerous in the towns. No English Luther arose, but the unholy work was thoroughly done by kings and parliaments, by means of a series of penal laws unequalled in severity...

... worldly interests often bar the way from heresy to truth. When a government, for instance, reserves its favours and functions for adherents of the state religion, the army of civil servants becomes a more powerful body of missionaries than the ordained ministers. Prussia, France, and Russia are cases in point."

30.8.15

A recessão no Vaticano

Sandro Magister:
In occasione della centesima udienza generale del pontificato di papa Francesco, mercoledì 26 agosto, la prefettura della casa pontificia ha comunicato che a questi cento appuntamenti hanno preso parte in totale 3.147.600 persone, così distribuite anno dopo anno:

- 1.548.500 i presenti alle 30 udienze del 2013,

- 1.199.000 i presenti alle 43 udienze del 2014,

- 400.100 i presenti alle 27 udienze del 2015.

Questo significa che anno dopo anno la media dei presenti a ciascuna udienza è stata la seguente:

- 51.617 persone nel 2013,

- 27.883 persone nel 2014,

- 14.818 persone nel 2015.
Comentário do Pe. Ray Blake:
"Friends who live in the Borgo Pio area very close to St Peter's which used to be jammed packed on Wednesdays at the beginning of his Papacy used to complain about the type of people who wanted a glimpse of the Pope Francis 'they seem to have no understanding of Catholicism', they were people who wanted a 'lucky look' at the Pope. Apparently they would pass around children who managed to get a touch', or more wonderfully a kiss being passed around to be touched by 'Scicillians' or 'gypsies' so they might have a share in whatever 'luck' had been acquired."

29.8.15

International Theological Commission (2014): "individual believers may deny assent even to the teaching of legitimate pastors if they do not recognise in that teaching the voice of Christ"

INTERNATIONAL THEOLOGICAL COMMISSION, SENSUS FIDEI IN THE LIFE OF THE CHURCH (2014) (*):
61. ‘Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God ; for many false prophets have gone out into the world’ (1Jn 4:1). The sensus fidei fidelis confers on the believer the capacity to discern whether or not a teaching or practice is coherent with the true faith by which he or she already lives. If individual believers perceive or ‘sense’ that coherence, they spontaneously give their interior adherence to those teachings or engage personally in the practices, whether it is a matter of truths already explicitly taught or of truths not yet explicitly taught.

62. The sensus fidei fidelis also enables individual believers to perceive any disharmony, incoherence, or contradiction between a teaching or practice and the authentic Christian faith by which they live. They react as a music lover does to false notes in the performance of a piece of music. In such cases, believers interiorly resist the teachings or practices concerned and do not accept them or participate in them. ‘The habitus of faith possesses a capacity whereby, thanks to it, the believer is prevented from giving assent to what is contrary to the faith, just as chastity gives protection with regard to whatever is contrary to chastity.’[77]

63. Alerted by their sensus fidei, individual believers may deny assent even to the teaching of legitimate pastors if they do not recognise in that teaching the voice of Christ, the Good Shepherd. ‘The sheep follow [the Good Shepherd] because they know his voice. They will not follow a stranger, but they will run away from him because they do not know the voice of strangers’ (Jn 10:4-5). For St Thomas, a believer, even without theological competence, can and even must resist, by virtue of the sensus fidei, his or her bishop if the latter preaches heterodoxy.[78]In such a case, the believer does not treat himself or herself as the ultimate criterion of the truth of faith, but rather, faced with materially ‘authorised’ preaching which he or she finds troubling, without being able to explain exactly why, defers assent and appeals interiorly to the superior authority of the universal Church.[79]

64. The sensus fidei fidelis also enables the believer to distinguish in what is preached between what is essential for an authentic Catholic faith and what, without being formally against the faith, is only accidental or even indifferent with regard to the core of the faith. For example, by virtue of their sensus fidei, individual believers may relativise certain particular forms of Marian devotion precisely out of adherence to an authentic cult of the Virgin Mary. They might also distance themselves from preaching which unduly mixes together Christian faith and partisan political choices. By keeping the spirit of the believer focused in this way on what is essential to the faith, the sensus fidei fidelis guarantees an authentic Christian liberty (cf. Col 2:16-23), and contributes to a purification of faith.

65. Thanks to the sensus fidei fidelis and sustained by the supernatural prudence that the Spirit confers, the believer is able to sense, in new historical and cultural contexts, what might be the most appropriate ways in which to give an authentic witness to the truth of Jesus Christ, and moreover to act accordingly. The sensus fidei fidelis thus acquires a prospective dimension to the extent that, on the basis of the faith already lived, it enables the believer to anticipate a development or an explanation of Christian practice. Because of the reciprocal link between the practice of the faith and the understanding of its content, the sensus fidei fidelis contributes in this way to the emergence and illumination of aspects of the Catholic faith that were previously implicit; and because of the reciprocal link between the sensus fidei of the individual believer and the sensus fidei of the Church as such, that is the sensus fidei fidelium, such developments are never purely private, but always ecclesial. The faithful are always in relationship with one another, and with the magisterium and theologians, in the communion of the Church.

[(*) PRELIMINARY NOTE

In its quinquennium of 2009-2014, the International Theological Commission studied the nature of sensus fidei and its place in the life of the Church. ... The text “Sensus fidei in the Life of the Church” ... was then submitted to its President, Cardinal Gerhard L. Müller, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, who authorized its publication.]

28.8.15

St. Thomas Aquinas: "if the faith were endangered, a subject ought to rebuke his prelate even publicly"

ST II-II, Q3, A4:
Article 4. Whether a man is bound to correct his prelate?

Objection 1. It would seem that no man is bound to correct his prelate. For it is written (Exodus 19:12): "The beast that shall touch the mount shall be stoned," [Vulgate: 'Everyone that shall touch the mount, dying he shall die.'] and (2 Samuel 6:7) it is related that the Lord struck Oza for touching the ark. Now the mount and the ark signify our prelates. Therefore prelates should not be corrected by their subjects.

Objection 2. Further, a gloss on Galatians 2:11, "I withstood him to the face," adds: "as an equal." Therefore, since a subject is not equal to his prelate, he ought not to correct him.

Objection 3. Further, Gregory says (Moral. xxiii, 8) that "one ought not to presume to reprove the conduct of holy men, unless one thinks better of oneself." But one ought not to think better of oneself than of one's prelate. Therefore one ought not to correct one's prelate.

On the contrary, Augustine says in his Rule: "Show mercy not only to yourselves, but also to him who, being in the higher position among you, is therefore in greater danger." But fraternal correction is a work of mercy. Therefore even prelates ought to be corrected.
I answer that, A subject is not competent to administer to his prelate the correction which is an act of justice through the coercive nature of punishment: but the fraternal correction which is an act of charity is within the competency of everyone in respect of any person towards whom he is bound by charity, provided there be something in that person which requires correction.

Now an act which proceeds from a habit or power extends to whatever is contained under the object of that power or habit: thus vision extends to all things comprised in the object of sight. Since, however, a virtuous act needs to be moderated by due circumstances, it follows that when a subject corrects his prelate, he ought to do so in a becoming manner, not with impudence and harshness, but with gentleness and respect. Hence the Apostle says (1 Timothy 5:1): "An ancient man rebuke not, but entreat him as a father." Wherefore Dionysius finds fault with the monk Demophilus (Ep. viii), for rebuking a priest with insolence, by striking and turning him out of the church.

Reply to Objection 1. It would seem that a subject touches his prelate inordinately when he upbraids him with insolence, as also when he speaks ill of him: and this is signified by God's condemnation of those who touched the mount and the ark.

Reply to Objection 2. To withstand anyone in public exceeds the mode of fraternal correction, and so Paul would not have withstood Peter then, unless he were in some way his equal as regards the defense of the faith. But one who is not an equal can reprove privately and respectfully. Hence the Apostle in writing to the Colossians (4:17) tells them to admonish their prelate: "Say to Archippus: Fulfil thy ministry [Vulgate: 'Take heed to the ministry which thou hast received in the Lord, that thou fulfil it.' Cf. 2 Timothy 4:5." It must be observed, however, that if the faith were endangered, a subject ought to rebuke his prelate even publicly. Hence Paul, who was Peter's subject, rebuked him in public, on account of the imminent danger of scandal concerning faith, and, as the gloss of Augustine says on Galatians 2:11, "Peter gave an example to superiors, that if at any time they should happen to stray from the straight path, they should not disdain to be reproved by their subjects."

Reply to Objection 3. To presume oneself to be simply better than one's prelate, would seem to savor of presumptuous pride; but there is no presumption in thinking oneself better in some respect, because, in this life, no man is without some fault. We must also remember that when a man reproves his prelate charitably, it does not follow that he thinks himself any better, but merely that he offers his help to one who, "being in the higher position among you, is therefore in greater danger," as Augustine observes in his Rule quoted above.

27.8.15

St. Thomas Aquinas: "[The believer] must not give assent to a prelate who preaches against the faith"

St. Thomas Aquinas, Scriptum, III, d.25, q.2, a.1, qla 4, ad 3:
‘[The believer] must not give assent to a prelate who preaches against the faith…. The subordinate is not totally excused by his ignorance. In fact, the habitus of faith inclines him against such preaching because that habitus necessarily teaches whatever leads to salvation. Also, because one must not give credence too easily to every spirit, one should not give assent to strange preaching but should seek further information or simply entrust oneself to God without seeking to venture into the secrets of God beyond one’s capacities.
[Source, note 78]

26.8.15

Immigration in the Catechism of the Catholic Church

Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2241:
"The more prosperous nations are obliged, to the extent they are able, to welcome the foreigner in search of the security and the means of livelihood which he cannot find in his country of origin. Public authorities should see to it that the natural right is respected that places a guest under the protection of those who receive him.

Political authorities, for the sake of the common good for which they are responsible, may make the exercise of the right to immigrate subject to various juridical conditions, especially with regard to the immigrants' duties toward their country of adoption. Immigrants are obliged to respect with gratitude the material and spiritual heritage of the country that receives them, to obey its laws and to assist in carrying civic burdens.