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So, I shouldn’t have converted, then? – UPDATED February 24, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, disconcerting, Ecumenism, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Holy suffering, Lent, Papa, sadness, scandals, secularism, shocking, the return.

The other major story – or perhaps scandal – that broke over the weekend was Louis Verricchio’s revealing to the orthodox Catholic world, anyway, that Pope Francis had sent a greeting to an American evangelical protestant confab wherein he called some guy named Tony Palmer-  who has gotten many, many Catholics to reject their faith and apostasize – his “brother bishop.”

It seems Tony Palmer has known the pope since his days in Argentina and that they are great buds.  Palmer was due to speak at one of Kenneth Copeland’s protestant hootenannys and wanted Pope Francis to send a greeting to the evangelicals. Pope Francis, who has had a long history of eager cooperation with evangelicals, went so far, on video, as calling Palmer his “brother bishop” (see 1:20):

Verricchio has many videos from the confab at his site, if you want a flavor for that kind of false-emotion, overly produced, and highly staged event.  I’ve been watching and observing evangelicals for over 30 years, and it’s always the same: the twisting of bits of Scripture to their own destruction, orchestrated events to fire emotions, and always money, money, money.  You don’t love Jesus if you don’t keep me in $5000 suits.

So, one of these types – wearing a pretend Roman collar, no less – is a “brother bishop?”  Speaking from the heart?  So then why did I convert? Why should anyone convert?  And when Pope Francis says @1:55 that Jesus Christ is “the only Lord,” how does he reconcile that with telling muslims they don’t need to convert and can be saved by their faith in “Allah?”  You can include the Jews, who specifically repudiate Jesus Christ and frequently harbor a great animosity towards Christians and Christianity.  But Pope Francis, echoing nebulous conciliar statements, claim they have their own path to salvation.

Yes, what happened to “let your yes mean yes and your no mean no?”  Is this a different message for a different audience?  When speaking to muslims, islam is fine, but when speaking to evangelicals, Jesus Christ is the Only Lord?!  Que paso, Jorge?

From the standpoint of one who very deliberately, after much suffering, converted to the Faith, I have to say, all these excessive efforts at ecumenical outreach are very painful for me to see.  It seems to trivialize all I went through for the sake of conversion (and I am far from alone), which painful process I have never once seen Pope Francis mention as being noble, or even worthy.

Instead, what we have seen repeatedly is that all these false sects, with their erroneous beliefs which actually lead people away from Christ, in so many cases, are saintly “brothers” who are just perfectly fine where they are at.  Again, this is not limited to separated Christians, it seems to apply to EVERY religion out there. This is self-contradictory thinking, as I pointed out above, for by embracing evangelical protestants who love them some Jesus, Pope Francis is telling the same muslims he embraced a few months ago that they are, in fact, in thrall of an idolatrous false religion.  This is the fundamental flaw in all ecumenism, aside from the massive indifferentism it perpetuates: any “advance” with one sect or group means a setback with another, because they believe contradictory things.  That is one major reason why ecumenism, as such, is doomed to fail.

Unless, of course, we reduce our Faith to just a worldly feel-good society where the lowest religious common denominator predominates.  That would result in Catholic churches inescapably being Good Shepherds, with 20 or 30 old women in attendance and no one else (essentially, like France).  Which error Pope Francis again and again claims to oppose, but then we see this very “heartfelt” message.  What are we to believe?  It’s just confusion piled on confusion – the favorite tool of modernists.

Well, now we have more fodder for our Septuagesima and Lenten sufferings.  Louis Verricchio also notes that Pope Francis appears to have a kind word, even a heart felt love, for everyone, save orthodox/traditional Catholics.  There’s a phrase for that, but I’ll keep it to myself.

To give you an idea of what kind of creature Copeland, Palmer, and their fellow televangelists, see this report from an admittedly hostile secular pagan tabloid.  Nonetheless, as Verricchio notes, how does Pope Francis square his denouncing of the rich and love of the poor, and his encouragement to pursue  a simple, Christian lifestyle, with this man’s fabulous wealth?  And almost every other major televangelist enjoys a similar lifestyle:

UPDATE: Just another thought, for those who may express scandal at this post. If I made a post where I referred to Anglican/evangelical orders as valid (there is massive question as to the lineage of this “Bishop” Tony Palmer, and whether he is even truly Anglican), and called Episcopal head Catherine Jefferts Schori a true bishop in Christ’s Church, would there not be scandal?  Would I not rightly lose the attention of many readers?  Even if I claimed differently, later, would my claim, if I had originally had doubts, at least be a grave sin against prudence?

I cannot judge the actions of a pope, but I can recognize scandal when I see it.

UPDATE II: So, I guess I should not have been surprised. Nevertheless, I have been dismayed at the outpouring of ecstatic, uncritical support for this little ecumenical gesture on the part of Pope Francis.  A few mix in a word or two of caution regarding the doctrinal gulf between protestants, especially evangelical protestants, and Catholics.  But even those are pretty muted.  Most reactions have stated just how unreservedly pleased Our Blessed Lord must be at this turn of events, because apparently what Jesus craves more than anything is “unity.”  Whatever that means.  Of course, any unity that failed to proclaim Christ’s sovereign Reign and which would be founded at least in part on error would be totally false.

One common defense of the greeting I’ve seen is that we have to meet people on their terms, that Catholics must “try to at least find some common ground to bring us together and start a conversation must be the first step.”

Maybe.  It certainly sounds good to worldly, secular ears today.  But is that how the early Church dealt with heretics?  Aren’t protestants heretics?   How many great Saints and early Church Fathers can I quote that absolutely excoriated heretics in the most savage of terms, casting them literally and figuratively out of the Church and referring to them as children of satan – or even satans themselves.  So un-ecumenical!  But such was the faith that conquered an empire, and endured 2000+ years.

How did St. Paul react to the erroneous judaizers in Galatians and other letters?  Did he tell them how awesome they were, but they just had one or two errors to tweak?  NO!  He completely obliterated them, knowing that one error mixed in with thousands of truths leads to the corruption of all.  He even “withstood Peter to his face,” showing that the pope can, indeed, be wrong, even on matters of doctrine.

But my biggest problem with Francis’ comments is that they just obliterate Catholic efforts at evangelization.  Now when Catholics try to convert protestants, what will they hear?  “Even your pope thinks we’re fine, leave me alone!”  How much harder will it be to promote the Church’s already moribund efforts at evangelization?  Just as it has become harder to defend the Church’s Doctrine on marriage and abortion, since Pope Francis’ previous unfortunate comments.  There have been full-blown heretic demonstrations at nominally Catholic colleges and schools, with the students claiming Pope Francis doesn’t “judge,” so let that “married” sodomite teach theology, or let that woman have an abortion.

And so it goes.



1. Magdalene Prodigal - February 24, 2014

Well, it sometimes seems best to not see or hear what the Holy Father is doing or saying! This Tony Palmer a bishop? He is not even ordained and for our Holy Father to put him on the same level with his version of ecclesial community with a true bishop of the one true Church who has the fullness of the Sacrament of Orders is really going too far.

But dear Cardinal Burke, even though removed from two posts and denigrated and criticized, puts the best possible light on what the Pope is doing:

The Holy Father has love and smiles for all but those that embrace the fullness of our glorious faith…and those like the FFI who were growing so rapidly because of that stance. Can’t have that! Let everyone be comfortable in their false religions but these other…of various and sundry derogatory names but who is to judge…keep their traditional views to themselves.

2. skeinster - February 24, 2014

This was one of the reasons I asked you about linking up the family to CMTV. My aim was to offer them an explanation of Why Mom Has To Be So Difficult- that didn’t come from me, the world’s worst explainer.

So, when the Pope apparently says in his non-nuanced way that so many things other than Catholicism are equal paths to holiness, it’s not helpful.

Luke 17:10 cured me of expecting kudos for converting, so my feelings aren’t hurt (not suggesting yours are, either). But it is just one more thing to deal with.

Dead serious here, though- we really, really need to drop the “Pope Francis is mean to Trads” meme. It is perfectly true, but there is nothing we can do about it and the repetition makes us look like whiny losers. Which is not very attractive, speaking from long experience…

tantamergo - February 24, 2014

See what I said to TG. I don’t so much care that he obviously doesn’t like us, but the point is the contrast shows who he does like. And that may reveal quite a bit about the man.

3. LaGallina - February 24, 2014

One of the worst things about this whole incident was the overwhelming “joy” that came from the Mark Shea’s of the Catholic world. They were just all a twitter about what a wonderful, special, beautiful thing this was.

Meanwhile I checked the comments on a protestant site that reported on it. The com box was full of “we don’t want anything to do with that whore of Babylon, Mary worshipping, false religion.”

Why are Catholics so enamored of protestants?

tantamergo - February 24, 2014

Did you comment at Aggie Catholics? You could go back over there and tell him that it is a total copout that we have to “reach out” to heretics where they are at, to make them feel good for the part of their beliefs that are not erroneous. Garbage! Is that how St. Paul dealt with error, is that how the Church dealt with the Novatanists, the Donatists, the Arians? NO! Saints and Fathers called them all kinds of foul things, because they were deserved! And they sure didn’t bend over backwards to please them to try to woo them back? They veritably shouted: YOU ARE IN ERROR! REPENT AND CONVERT! Not “you are my brother, let’s just get along!”

This, correcting the obscene words of our Vice President Biden, is a big friggin’ deal.

4. TG - February 24, 2014

So what is new with this pope. I have to agree with ” we really, really need to drop the “Pope Francis is mean to Trads” meme.” You know those two Italians that got fired for saying what they thought of the pope – that’s me. My priest said I have to love him but I don’t have to like him.

tantamergo - February 24, 2014

Are you saying we do need to drop the meme, or don’t?

Did I pick it up? Pope Francis’ attitude regarding traditional Catholics isn’t that critical, but what I was pointing out was the glaring difference in treatment given to various groups. Some are treated with kid gloves, some are positively slathered over, while Trads have gotten nothing but the iron fist.

skeinster - February 25, 2014

Yes, we do need to drop the meme.
Unfair, I know, but there is no way to discuss this without looking like a victim or envious of those groups that the Pope is fawning over.

Only insistent about this b/c in over two decades, I’ve never seen it have any positive effect on anyone.

5. Baseballmom - February 24, 2014

I really must stick to my resolution to pray for the man and NOT READ ANYTHING ABOUT HIM. It is not good for my physical or spiritual health….

tantamergo - February 24, 2014

That’s an incredibly sad commentary. I have thought about doing a post on that – faithful Catholics having to ignore the pope out of fear of being scandalized. Who can imagine such a situation?

Baseballmom - February 25, 2014

Well yes, it is sad. But if our suffering can, in some way, bless Our Mother the Church then I will do what I can. I had a sick feeling when our new Holy Father was elevated to the Papacy and it has only gotten worse. I have tried to see the good, and have even tried to convince others that he is “trying his best.” But I simply must go back to prayer and little sacrifices for him…. Just finished a novena for him the other day…

Hannah - February 25, 2014

I had that same sick feeling as you. I felt something wasn’t right. We sure were right.

May God have mercy on the Pope.

The salvation of souls are at stake here. Sometimes I ask: does he even care?

TG - February 25, 2014

I had that same feeling too when I saw him. Maybe I was just disappointed because it wasn’t Cardinal Burke. I’m like you as I can’t watch him on EWTN. I do read about him though like here or other blogs. I also pray for him.

skeinster - February 25, 2014

I think we need to remember that the Popes are men, just like the rest of us, elected by men, just like the rest of us. Who can be great saints, or can be great sinners, depending on their co-operation with grace.
The office is no guarantee- please search “Borgia popes”.

If we want to argue that Pope Francis is a product of the Post-conciliar Church, and we want to argue that numerous bad things followed the Second Vatican Council, then why are we shocked at this outcome? Correction/chastisement falls on everyone- not just the ones who most specifically need it.

6. Frank - February 25, 2014

When the Israelites clamored for a worldly king the Lord gave them Saul. When Americans voted for a demagogic equivocator, they got Obama. When Catholics embraced cafeteria and new age Catholicism, they got Pope Francis.

Baseballmom - February 25, 2014

Except that many non-western Catholics did not embrace modernity…. Why must they suffer?

7. Martina - February 25, 2014

“But my biggest problem with Francis’ comments is that they just obliterate Catholic efforts at evangelization. Now when Catholics try to convert protestants, what will they hear? ”Even your pope thinks we’re fine, leave me alone!” How much harder will it be to promote the Church’s already moribund efforts at evangelization?”

How true!
It is even impossible to (re)convert apostate Catholics.

I´m a convert to the faith, too and for seven years I´ve tried to “convert” my neighbors who are all Catholics and who all live in mortal sin. One of them told me recently that “the Catholic Church” is now going to allow divorce. When I heard this I nearly fell of my chair. This is what the average Catholic understands when they read the news!
They know nothing about their faith and don´t care. The only thing they are concerned about is that the Church´s morals are “backwards-oriented ” and “old fashioned”.
They are fine with the news that come from Rome.Their sins have now “papal approval”.

Baseballmom - February 25, 2014

You nailed it. I am currently trying to convince my brother to seek an annulment (he definitely has a case) before attempting marriage. But what is coming from the Vatican and from the German episcopacy is not helping at all.

TG - February 25, 2014

The Catholic Church can’t do anything about a divorce. You can’t get remarried unless your marriage is declared invalid. Divorced people living chaste lives can receive the sacraments.

8. Daniel O'Connor - February 26, 2014

I don’t know why nobody is pointing out what I see as the much bigger issue here (we all technically speak falsely when we refer to priests of other religions, when we refer to evangelical denominations as “Churches,” etc. Francis calling Palmer a Bishop just falls into that category); at 2:58 Francis says that only the Lord is blameless. This of course is not true; Our Lady is blameless as well. I wish he put her in there.

I just leave with one humble piece of advice that I know I myself need as well. Don’t expect to be thanked for the good you do, nor for what you suffer in doing it. You have the Eucharist thanks to your conversion. What else could you want?

Baseballmom - February 26, 2014


tantamergo - February 26, 2014

I think I tend to be pretty clear noting that the protestants are sects, not churches, and that their ordinations are not valid.

Good point on the Blessed Virgin, however. I think that says a whole, whole lot.

9. Patt - February 26, 2014

Looking forward to a Roman Catholic Pope in the future– one who does not have a war against tradition and orthodoxy!

10. Codgitator (Cadgertator) - February 27, 2014

I think there’s more–much more–to this “encounter” than mere politesse, and the wave of support-slash-defensiveness about this action suggests that some would rather not think out the implications of this “heartful” sin against prudence. I think it’s emblematic of Francis’s confusing and confused quasi-Lutheran tendencies. I would appreciate any feedback: http://ebougis.wordpress.com/2014/02/22/pope-icarus-alights/

11. Lisa M. - February 28, 2014

This is the only solution I have found that makes me think I might be doing something to help this situation. http://www.prayforbishopsnow.org It’s a simple way to offer all of the works joys sufferings of the day for the bishops. Those who do it will have one tlm offered for them each month by the Fssp priest who supports this effort. No signing up or anything like that, strictly by honor. Check it out, it’s a great idea.

12. The Flash - March 1, 2014

Pope Francis is not a pope, he’s a destroyer, the false prophet and his gay clergy and his buddies Ken Copeland and Palmer who have been preaching garbage for decades upon decades…seducing the multitudes with false healings and false visions and false spiritual tongues that they all speak in…polluted and surrounded by evil spirits…The same garbage as Peter Popoff, Tammy Faye. and bi sexual preachers like Jim Baker and the whole bunch of them.

It’s bad enough gay priests bring their associates friends and lovers to sit in between the faithful not telling them they are gay and fill the Church with secret sexual evil…now bring in these people from Ken Copeland evil ministry and you’ll see all kinds of false healings and deceptions.

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