Failure of modern ecumenism is not accidental – it is deliberate December 3, 2015Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, catachesis, different religion, Ecumenism, episcopate, error, General Catholic, horror, Papa, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, the struggle for the Church.
It has often been overlooked in these years of crisis, that the Church, in her long history, has a quite successful record of ecumenical efforts, in the form of true ecumenism – that is, the return of separated Christians to the bosom of Holy Mother Church. The return of a large portion of the Ukranian Orthodox is just one example. Others include the return of various Maronite and Melkite groups to full unity. This history stretches back many hundreds of years.
HJA Sire notes in his book Phoenix from the Ashes that the post-conciliar ecumenical movement – one deliberately NOT oriented
towards what modernists call “the outdated methodology of the return” – has been unique in its failure to produce any real progress in the growth of unity. That is because its orientation – not towards return, but endless, pointless jabber – is fundamentally perverse. It is also because the wrong priorities have most often been operative – ecumenism with protestants has been much more heavily pursued than with actual, if schismatic, churches:
In ecumenism in the past fifty years the Catholic Church has done everything that it should not have done and failed to do everything that it should have done. In the genuine, Catholic view, the one that was pursued by popes long before Vatican II, the first purpose of ecumenism is to remedy the scandal of Christian division…….[E]cumenism ought to direct itself first and foremost to the traditions represented by the ancient patriarchates, the churches that have preserved the ecclesial and sacramental understanding of early times [instead of the heavy focus on protestantism seen since the 20th century]. With such churches the highest prize of rapprochement is corporate reunion, which has in fact been achieved many times in the past.
The same objectives cannot apply in the case of protestantism. Here, doctrinal convergence would mean the entertaining of 16th century innovations in Christianity, or of modern Western ideas to which Catholics are only too much exposed, anyway. Moreover, since protestantism has no sacramentally valid hierarchies, there is no possibility of ecclesial union in the sense that exists with Eastern Churches. That is not, however, to say that there can be no ecumenical amity with protestantism; far from it. There is no need to accept the modernist dichotomy that either one waives Catholic doctrine on what constitutes a church or one is committed to unconditional bigotry and exclusivity. But with protestantism different objectives apply; since doctrinal agreement is impossible in practice, and ecclesial union impossible in principle, it is a waste of time talking about them. [This is a really key point, one I’ve addressed many times in the past. With tens of thousands of protestant sects, each believing mutually exclusive things, any ecumenical advance with one sect necessarily means a reverse with another. That is why ecumenism with protestants outside the conversion of souls into the Church is ultimately worse than pointless. It is also impossible to reunite with bodies that are not, in fact, churches.] What distinguishes the case of the protestant churches is that the Catholic Church is immersed with them in a Western society that is becoming increasingly anti-Christian. The task here is to combine for the defense of essential Christian principles. Closer mutual understanding may or may not be the reward but, even if it is, it is more likely to come form practical cooperation than from doctrinal negotiations. [Bu- bu- but……what of the fabulous conferences in Switzerland at posh resorts? What of the feting by the media?!? What of the great meals? Sire doesn’t get the point of the ecumenical movement at all!!!] The fact needs to be borne in mind that the ultimate purpose of ecumenism is not a diplomatic one, concerned with relations between churches, but an evangelical one, concerned with the presentation of Christianity to the world. From the beginning, the premise of ecumenism, even in the East, but above all in the West, ought to have been that what the Christian churches needed to do was not sit down and talk but stand up together and fight. [Of course, this assumes that the leading lights of the ecumenical movement have concern for souls, or the state of the Church, or fighting against the decomposition of Christendom, anywhere on their agenda. That is to say, what Sire is describing may not be a bug, but a feature.]
……The weakness and incoherent voice of the Church has removed what should have been a strong anchor to which the Christians could have clung……….[O]ne should notice the complete nullity of the Church’s modern record, in contrast to its success in the past. Throughout its history, the Roman Church has achieved unions with many Eastern churches, the most important of them being that with the Ukrainian Church in 1596. Following it, one could say that unions in one part of the world or another took place every few decades; the more recent ones include those with the Ethiopian Catholic Church in 1846 and the Syro-Malankar Church in India in 1930, besides minor concords with small groups of Bulgarians, Macedonians, and Russians. Since Vatican II, however, there has been not a single union of a separated Church with Rome; as seen by the bodies to which it makes such ingratiating gestures, the new, ecumenically minded Catholic Church is not worth joining. [Again, to the modernists who dominate the ecumenical movement in the Church, that is viewed much more as a feature, than a bug]
We may turn to the protestant churches, whose alliance would have done most to defend Christian principles in a secularized world. That opportunity has been thrown away by an approach that ignored the aims of joint action and lost itself in ecumenical talk. Plans for reunion were founded on false doctrinal premises which, instead of building friendship, have only damaged it. An example was given by Pope John Paul II’s official visit to Norway in 1989, when his meeting with Lutheran sin the royal palace was boycotted by seven of the country’s eleven bishops, on the ground of the Catholic Church’s failure to give way on a range of points [notice how it is always the Church giving way? These points were on matters that simply could not be compromised, even if the present pope seems determined to introduce heretofore unheard of novelties regarding them] , including intercommunion and the ecclesial recognition of the Lutheran “church;” one of the protesters declared that the ecumenical process had stopped with the accession of Pope John Paul II. This display against a pope who spent his reign grovelling to every conventicle of Christian and non-Christian religion shows the fact that in protestant circles – and indeed in Catholic ones – ecumenism was understood as the indiscriminate surrender by the Catholic Church to protestant claims.
That. It’s the key to understanding the major thrust of the ecumenical movement within the Church. It is led by individuals of the same disposition as those who gutted the Mass – including, originally, the Roman Canon – because it offended protestant sensibilities. “Saint” Anibale himself declared he wanted a Mass that would be totally acceptable to protestants. The revolutionaries who gained control over Vatican II were heavily disposed to similar views: Yves Congar knelt before the tomb of Luther and believed protestantism better preserved Christianity’s early “purity” better than the Church! Throughout the movement’s history over the past 50 years, it has involved far more grovelling, self-abasement, and doctrinal surrender on the part of the Church than on its ecumenical “partners.” Their compromises have been mostly symbolic.
Even in its much-touted “successes” – such as the Joint Declaration on Justification with the Lutherans – all that resulted was a mealy mouthed, horribly worded document that badly undermined Catholic belief while failing to achieve anything of even remote significance. Who, besides to make a point like this one, speaks of that all-but-forgotten Joint Declaration today?
Ecumenists -and I do not exaggerate – view the process as “success.” That is, they view simply sitting down at endless, increasingly pointless discussions as the very success they seek. So very, very bureaucratic. Of course the ecumenical movement cannot go away! It employs thousands! It has been institutionalized.
One final point: note that ecumenism focuses almost entirely on those sects who have most fallen into modernism and progressive agitation. They don’t like to have much to do with those icky fundamentalists. I think that can be stressed even more now that Francis is pope, notwithstanding his friendship with shysters like Kenneth Copeland. The movement is, in many respects, simply a way for like-minded progressive modernists to meet and talk endlessly at other’s expense. I imagine that talk at times turns to how to frustrate the obstructionism of those knuckle-dragging observant souls. I’m being harsh, but I see duplicity throughout this self-described movement. I think it is one of the most obscene aspects of the modern Church, because it deliberately undermines what remains key for all those outside the Church – conversion. And I find in the statements of many of the leaders of this movement (stating that conversion is not necessary, that the Church desires protestants to remain where they’re at) really annoying, since I’m a convert and believe passionately in the extreme importance – one might say practical necessity – of visible communion with the Church for salvation.
I said practical necessity. Yes I understand baptism by desire and all the rest.