Francis’s Fortune Cookies of Apostasy

“Hence, too, that meaning of the sacred dogmas is ever to be maintained which has once been declared by Holy mother Church, and there must never be any abandonment of this sense under the pretext or in the name of a more profound understanding.” (Infallible declaration, Dogmatic Council, Vatican I)

fortune cookie

Our local newspaper, the Daily Journal, in its September 19 edition, carried a feature story about Pope Francis in which four Catholics, known to me, were interviewed. These four included three elderly ladies and a retired priest who not too long ago, was pastor of the parish I once attended.  It was no surprise to me that those four applaud Francis’s (in the expression of George Will) “woolly sentiments that have the intellectual tone of fortune cookies.”

For over 2,000 years, the Church founded by our Divine Lord, has issued papal documents such as Apostolic Constitutions, encyclicals, and motu propios, to expound upon, and to teach faith and morals to the faithful, never to give opinions on scientific matters, or to introduce a novelty completely foreign to the deposit of Faith: “For the Holy Spirit was promised to the successors of Peter not so that they might, by his revelation, make known some new doctrine, but that, by his assistance, they might religiously guard and faithfully expound the revelation or deposit of faith transmitted by the apostles.” (Dogmatic constitution on the Church of Christ, Vatican I)

To disseminate opinions by a pope who uses the trappings of his office, is misleading and dangerous to Catholics as well as to others who trust in the moral judgments of a vicar of Christ.

The newspaper touts the ladies interviewed as being the most active in the parish, and I have no doubt they are because the orthodox-believing parishioners, among them younger people, and several homeschooling families, left long ago. What remains is a dying parish which has had to eliminate Masses; seen a drastic decline in membership; shares a pastor with two other churches in a necessary merger; no longer houses its own Religious Education program; can’t seem to recruit sufficient altar boys, or even girls, to serve at the altar.  Need I say more? It’s a dying parish, and these interviewees are giddy over the prospect of an accelerated pace of destruction for the church they believe themselves to love!

Lady 87 year old: “Participation by women in the church was limited to ‘cleaning the church.’ ”

“She has seen divorcees and gay people shunned by the church, and particularly, in the latter case…and it has troubled her… ‘I approve of everything he [Francis] is doing going forward’, she [87 year old] said.”

Lady 76 years old: “I am 10 times deeper in my faith.”

Lady 80 years old: “…she believes the attitude of passing judgment and taking punitive action toward those who violate various tenements [sic] of the faith is not what the church was built on.”

“[She] is most concerned by ‘not taking care of the planet…Very quietly he [Francis] will win out’, she said.”

Priest 75 about years old: “God is the only one who doesn’t get upset with our rejecting [H]im”, he said.

Priest:  “It’s in the scripture….When people reject [H]im we’re supposed to work it out,” he continued. “Instead we go to war.”

To this priest I would remind him of our Lady of Fatima’s sorrowful lamentation – and warning of the dire consequences both temporal and eternal if people do not stop offending God:  “Do not offend the Lord our God any more, for He is already too much offended!”  and “You have seen hell where the souls of poor sinners go…”

Scripture also tells us that Christ, the Stone – the solid foundation of right faith which is rejected by unbelievers will become the stumbling stone of perdition for them, “For there is no other name under heaven given to men, whereby we must be saved.”

What Christian in his right mind, especially a Catholic priest, can publicly state that God “doesn’t get upset” when he is rejected? This priest knows nothing of the sufferings of our Redeemer and God, our Lord Jesus Christ! He cannot possible fathom the bitter sorrows of his most loving Heart when He was rejected by His own people, and who continues to be rejected by many.  What hard and cold heart in this priest!

Fortunately, not all priests are like that. I do remember quite well the words of a previous pastor at the same church, my confessor at one time, a beautiful soul who expressed with his mouth what he held in his heart. He told me, “Christ died of a broken heart.”

When once referring to this true pastor of souls, Lady 87 once called him “weird” – for not getting with the times! Call it the lost generation, these ladies 76, 87 80 and the priest. Somewhere along the path, they lost their way, and Francis is giving them a false sense of security as well as assurance for continuing along a crooked bend instead of the straight and narrow road delineated by Divine Revelation.

I would remind those four, and others like them, that fortune cookies carry no dogmatic weight whatsoever;  not even if cooked up by a pope.

“Hold firmly that our faith is identical with that of the ancients. Deny this, and you dissolve the unity of the Church.” – St. Thomas Aquinas

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