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A few more thoughts on Amoris Laetitia April 15, 2016

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, Francis, General Catholic, horror, Revolution, scandals, secularism, self-serving, sexual depravity, shocking, Society, the struggle for the Church.

A rare late Friday afternoon blog post for you.  I haven’t thought this post through very well, I only have a few minutes……we’ll see what emerges.

I saw some commentary on the post to the effect that we shouldn’t panic, the Church still stands, a pope cannot destroy the Church, etc.  I do not panic for the Church.  I panic for the millions of souls who will, with absolute certainty, fall into error and lose their faith.  I panic over the irreparable (in human terms) harm being done to the Church and souls.  I have great fear over the future, and further chaos.  I fear the gathering darkness, and just how brutal the Church’s passion must be.  Since the Church is our Lord’s Body on earth, we can discern her passion will be every bit as terrible as His.

I have considered whether my initial post on this matter was scandalous or over the top.  I did get some guidance that I might pull back my strong hints regarding Francis’ lack of faithfulness to the belief and practice of the Church.

But considering the matter more coolly, now that the initial shock and anger have subsided, I would have a hard time issuing a retraction.  Subsequent analysis, contra the claims of Cardinal Burke, has indicated that Amoris Laetitia (the “Joy of Sex?”) constitutes a clear addition to the Church’s Magisterium*.  Yet it contains scores of statements which are scandalous, dangerous, possessed of a grave tendency to spread error and undermine the Faith, or out and out erroneous.  Millions have already concluded that the Church has somehow changed her Doctrine on solemn matters such as the reception of the Blessed Sacrament by those persisting in openly adulterous unions.

This document represents not only a radical departure from the Church’s perennial belief and practice on numerous moral matters, it contains not only grave misrepresentations (to the point of prevarication) of previous magisterial statements, but it, to me, represents a direct assault on some of the most critical moral doctrines of the Faith.  Declaring pseudo-sodo-marriage to be out of bounds while gravely wounding marriage by helping to normalize divorce, remarriage, and de-sacralizing the Blessed Sacrament is not just unwise, it self-contradictory.  How did we get to the point where the culture is so insane that most Catholics now believe that marriage between two people of the same sex is not only possible, it is full equivalent to true marriage and should be recognized as such by law?  Precisely through the mass normalization of divorce, remarriage, abuse of the Blessed Sacrament (and the self-denial of the torrents of Grace that should flow from it), etc.  It is contradictory to gravely weaken the Church’s condemnation of fornication, while at the same time declare abortion to be impermissible.

That is to say, what we are confronted with in Amoris Laetitia is very different from, say, Honorius signing a document endorsing Arianism at the point of a sword.  This is a concerted, deliberate, pre-meditated act.  What is more, it touches not on just one point of Doctrine but many of them.

The solemn Doctrine of the Faith is a tightly woven cohesive whole.  One thread cannot be pulled without unraveling the entirety.  The protestant revolutionaries proved this irrefutably with the founding of their false sects. Many started with just one particular point of deviation (such as the rejection of indulgences), but in virtually no time that “one thing” expanded into a radically different, and implacably hostile, set of beliefs.  If this course of synodal- and, it must be said, papal-induced chaos continues for even a few years, there will be nothing left.

Taken as a whole, I am forced to conclude that, from an earthly perspective, Francis lacks the Faith.  However, I also believe that he remains the Bishop of Rome seated in the Chair of Peter and head of the universal Church.  I do not know how to reconcile these beliefs.  I can only conclude that this is a mystery far beyond me, a mystery which may well continue to torment the Church for decades should he be followed by like-minded individuals as the Church continues her inevitable passion.  I am not saying, even remotely, that the Church has fallen, that Christ’s promise is false. I am not saying that the heretical sects are somehow right. I am not saying that the Church is reduced to an invisible element.

I am only saying that based on all the mass of evidence we have before us (and it is copious), Francis holds views which cannot be reconciled with the perennial belief and practice of the Church. Since holding those beliefs in their entirety has always been taken to be the sine qua non of being Catholic, the conclusion is inescapable.

I know Jesus Christ will prevail in the end. I strongly suspect all these events are being directed by His positive will.  I have not the faintest doubt that Christ will come in glory, the dead will rise, and there will be a final judgment of the good and evil.  I pray I have the faith to stand fast in these difficult times, but nothing any pope says or does is going to cause me to fall away.  Nor should you.  But I’m not going to bury my head in the sand, pretend this is not huge significant, or go along as if nothing has happened.  Something has happened, and we all have to come to terms with it while striving with all our might to remain faithful.

I strongly feel what we are seeing now from many quarters, seeking to explain away this exhortation or diminish its significance, is an exact replay of how the modernists were able to remake the Church in the wake of Vatican II.  If you wondered how people raised in the Faith with the Mass of Ages to sustain them could meekly accept, with precious little opposition, the radical changes foisted on the Church, look around you.  In fact, the process never stopped, but today the similarities are too striking to ignore.

I hope and pray I may be some tiny bit of assistance to you all in that effort. But if you’re looking for apologias for this pontificate, you’re probably going to be better off visiting other sites.

*- I have seen Cardinal Burke’s claim that Amoris Laetitia is not a magisterial document. I believe the case Cardinal Burke puts forth is flawed.  As other sites have noted, declaring Amoris Laetitia to be non-magisterial would be to throw out numerous other similar apostolic exhortations of the post-conciliar period, such as Familiaris Consortio, generally seen as being a much more orthodox document.  But perhaps throwing out all these apostolic exhortations from the post-conciliar period, novel as they are in consisting of “conclusions” ostensibly drawn from a meeting of a limited sub-set of bishops (I say ostensibly, as it is very apparent this pope had a conclusion in mind from well before the idea of a series of synods was even floated), might not be such a bad thing?  Perhaps Cardinal Burke is on to something, after all?  Or perhaps the argument could be framed that any document, from whatever source, that contradicts the Faith is immediately inadmissible?  But how to reconcile this with the magisterial definition of the Office of the Papacy that has emerged, particularly over the past 150 years?

I am not the one to answer these questions.  I have a feeling, however, that should the Church and this earth survive for another few hundred years, future saintly theologians will be struggling with these  questions, and might arrive at surprising conclusions.

Enough!  Have a blessed weekend.


1. Willard Money - April 15, 2016

Dude relax. This document doesn’t change anything. It merely reiterates the constant Catholic teaching that for a sin to be MORTAL and therefore cut off sanctifying grace the 3 conditions have to be met.

Would you have been freaking out when the Church changed it’s pastoral practice regarding suicide victims and started to allow them to receive a Catholic funeral and burial?

Mihaela - April 16, 2016
2. Woody - April 16, 2016

Dude, where’s my Church? But I also think you should throttle down. This pope is a product of the 60’s and the modernism that has been building up for decades. In my opinion, it all starts with a little give here and there and then finally the camel’s back breaks. Francis is catholic and so were the last few popes. As great as the laity says the last few popes were, we are seeing what happens when you start to tweek the liturgy and the dogmas of the Church. As Willard indicated, suicide is not a mortal sin anymore thanks to secular psychology. Feelings have taken over the intellect. Rules? Too harsh; better to make it up as you go along. Punishment? Too negative; let’s dialogue. RESPONSIBILITY FOR SOULS? Let’s not go there; God is all forgiving and all merciful, anyway. Cardinal Burke? What he said is not confusing and correct. He just didn’t use any fightin’ words that we all wanted to hear from him. I just thank God for Archbishop Lefebvre. If not for him, probably no TLM today. And he stood up to a saint!

Tantumblogo - April 18, 2016

Meh, I’m an engineer and thrive on clarity. It’s very difficult for me to read what I’ve read and say “Yep, that came from a Catholic,” regardless of his office.

But if the concern is that I’m going to go further and proclaim the seat vacant or anything like that, it won’t happen. I think we have to be very clear, for the sake of souls, that what is being taught is not consonant with the perennial belief and practice of the Church. If you understand how modernists have used rhetoric to advance their cause over the past 100 years or so, and I’m sure you do, you have to recognize this papacy and several of its magisterial pronunciations to be huge milestones (or millstones) in recreating the Church.

We all have to draw a great many lines to define what constitutes this great thing called the Church (or the Faith). Those lines go around ourselves and around others. We limit things we will allow ourselves to believe or say or do, and we do the same with regard to the influence we let others have on us. Each person, hopefully under the influence of Grace, will have their own level of comfort in positioning those imaginary barriers. And there can be very good reasons for placing them where you or I or someone else does. That does not make any of us right viz a viz anyone else, but I pray we are right with respect to ourselves. We can argue a bit about where someone is staking out their limits, especially if we see them going into dangerous areas, but I personally try to give quite a bit of flexibility to others in that regard.

There is a certain tension, tragically, at this time, between fealty to the office of the papacy and what is best for souls. You allude to the fact that there has been some of this tension for some time, but it’s increased exponentially in the past 3 years. Having been outside the Church and held really destructive beliefs for most of my life, I am very sensitive to influences that could cause others to do the same, or confirm them in their errors. So that colors my appreciation of the situation. Perhaps I’m also not sensitive enough to the kind of obeisance Catholics should have for the office of the papacy, due to some lingering protestant influence (out, damn spot!). I do not discount that, and contemplate that possibility from time to time. I don’t think that’s the case, but we don’t always know what we’re missing.

PS this comment is not entirely directed at you, Woody, it’s more of a general response and a further fleshing out of where I’m at right now.

3. Dorota Mosiewicz-Patalas - April 16, 2016

I have become convinced that we have been taught wrong about papacy and Tradition, and that Jorge Bergoglio knows it. Please, hear me out. Consider rationally.
My Father, who is over 80, never let us, children, criticize the pope, and did not approve of criticism of priests. Yet from the day he heard Bergoglio’s first “Good evening” from the balcony, my Father began to question, what he has always believed – that popes are somehow holy and that they love Jesus Christ wholeheartedly.
I see how he struggles with his mistrust and dislike of this pope. His pure heart and clear mind won’t allow him the peace he – I strongly believe, deserves from a papa. My Father suffered for his faith in Jesus Christ and his faithfulness to the Church. His cousins, in order not to suffer, denied Jesus, and prospered under a communist regime. It is those same old cousins who worship Bergoglio today. To them the supposedly down-to-earth, and sin-embracing, doctrine-hating man is a true follower of Jesus. The person who avoids the name Jesus and prohibits proselytizing is to them a true Christian. They claim it is THEY who have always been true Christians, changing with changing times, opportunistic and pragmatic, it was not my backward, rigid, legalistic Father.
I remember how I was laughed at in high school, when I repeated after my Father, that God decides the number of children one has, and that contraception is evil. I heard an aunt say once, in front of me, that my parents shouldn’t be like rabbits.

I am sure that the only reason my Father could believe the Church’s teaching on papacy was that he did not have the internet and the knowledge on the goings-on in the Church it brought. His main love has always been Jesus, and he respected the Church because the Church had told Him that it represented Jesus. His heart was simple and pure, and in His love for Jesus he always rejected duplicity and half-truths. He was not lukewarm, and even though it cost him and the rest of us, he never compromised.

I see such people today among what you called sects, and among Catholics. It is possible to be a Christian in the Catholic Church and outside of it. My Father is better suited to be pope than Jorge Bergoglio is. Bergoglio sweeps the name Jesus under the carpet, when it suits his purposes – peace and unity with those who deny Him. My Father never would. My father would never say: “Good evening”, if he could say instead: “Niech bedzie pochwalony Jezus Chrystus”.

Seeing how Catholics chose to deny what they clearly see, because they have been conditioned into papolatry, I am no longer surprised that so many protestants look down on us. I DO see that they tolerate Bergoglio’s unfaithfulness to Jesus, as though it were not an unbearable heartache, vulgar hypocrisy. and an insult to intelligence.

Baseballmom - April 16, 2016

Dorota, your post was very edifying to read, thank you for taking the time to post it. You are so blessed to have such a holy father.

tg - April 19, 2016

God bless your father, Dorota. I have the same feelings as your father has about the pope. I no longer like the name “Holy Father”. Why are we calling someone “holy” just because they are the pope – how do we know he is “holy”. I never thought that when Benedict and John Paul II were popes. I can understand why some protestants look down on us too. The church has caused so much scandal by hiding the truth about the priests’ abuse and the homosexual priests. But despite all this I will never the church because I still believe the teachings and am faithful to Jesus Christ. I just pray for a Pope Pius XIII or Leo XIV.

Branch - April 22, 2016

I think we call the pope “Holy Father” because of the office, not because of the man.

That said, the pope should be Catholic. It’s very much in doubt this one is.

4. SoccerMom - April 16, 2016

Thank you for your intellectual honesty and clarity of thought. It is refreshing to read.

5. Tim - April 16, 2016

Excellent post overall, however, the following raises eyebrows:

” It is possible to be a Christian in the Catholic Church and outside of it.”:


Tantumblogo - April 18, 2016

Hi Tim. I’m not finding that statement? I just re-read it twice and unless I am somehow glossing over it I didn’t see such a statement from me. If I am somehow missing it and did convey that (I can’t correct it because I can’t find it) it was entirely due to haste. I am one who has argued quite strenuously in favor of a pretty rigorous interpretation of EENS in the past. If I did make this statement, keep in mind it’s hard to constantly parse out all the differences between people’s view and description of themselves and the reality. That is to say, there are many areas where we can work with people in the separated sects, but that doesn’t mean they are fully Christian.

UPDATE: I see a commenter made exactly the statement you quote. Is that what you were referring to? The comment not being nested under another made it appear that you were replying directly to my post.

Tim - April 19, 2016

Re UPDATE: you are correct. I question the comment #3. I clicked incorrectly…..it should have shown up as a response to #3. You and I are on the same page on EENS. I have difficulty is calling folks Christian who, even though they claim allegiance to Jesus Christ, reject His Church, His Vicar, most of His Sacraments, His Communion of Saints, the veneration of His Mother, etc. Thanks for all of your work.

6. docmx001 - April 16, 2016

You should not pull back AT ALL. +Francis has now totally revealed himself as a full blown heretic. It appears the bishops will do nothing. It’s up to us, and it’s our duty. Check out my rantings from the past week over at nonvenipacem.com

And thanks for all you do.

7. docmx001 - April 16, 2016
8. Jacques DUMON - April 17, 2016

I am apalled about the levity the Pope has displayed in his opening the door to the communion for the divorced remarried couples.
Indeed, so far as I know, until now the catholic people who divorced with the aim to marry again another man/woman could not marry again in a religious catholic marriage, but only in a civil one, unless their former marriage had been nullified beforehand by a Vatican’s Court.
However everybody knows that the people living together in a civil union are considered by the RCC as if they were not married, and therefore are forbidden to be given the Eucharist.
Then how can the Pope authorize these people to take communion unless their former marriage has been nullified and them having married their new partner in a catholic religious marriage?
If I am mistaken regarding the Pope’s intentions, why then to restrict the Eucharist only to divorced remarried couples and extend it to the people living in civil unions or even to those engaged in concubinage?

TLM - April 17, 2016

I do believe that the ‘brass ring’ is to recognize same sex relationships as maybe ‘irregular’ as they say many times in AL.
I think that was the REAL goal all along.

9. TLM - April 17, 2016

Sorry, I should have added…….and possibly admit them to the Eucharist as well.

tg - April 19, 2016

That’s what I keep hearing. Getting ready for the Joy of Sodomy

10. Marguerite - April 18, 2016

Truth mixed with error. Can the devil do better than “That’s Amore” to drag souls to Hell? Also, was anyone dismayed by the response of PF to the Comrade’s visit to the Vatican when he said, anyone who thinks his visit is other than a courtesy call needs a psychiatrist? With all due respect, that response was snide and unbefitting of his stature.

11. Ian - April 18, 2016

Not to nitpick, but Honorius freely endorsed Monothelitism in a letter to the Patriarch of Alexandria (I think). Liberius signed off on an Arian-friendly creed formula under pressure.

Tantumblogo - April 18, 2016

Sorry, you’re right, I got my wires crossed. Thanks.

12. Sally Box - April 18, 2016


13. Sally Box - April 18, 2016

Coming more and more to the same conclusion of a certain Catholic blogger- simply that many of them don’t believe any of that b.s. (their phrase, not mine.)
Covers a lot of bases, and makes much more sense than other theories. And it really does leave doctrine intact- just b/c someone doesn’t believe it doesn’t make it false.
Doesn’t help the umpty thousands that might lose their souls, though.

14. La Gallina - April 18, 2016

At this point I really don’t understand what is so evil about believing the Seat of Peter is empty? Does it make any sense to say the Pope is evil but he is the Pope so I guess I’ll just have to deal with having a pope who hates the Catholic Church? Francis is clearly not a Catholic, so how can he be pope? I am getting sick of everyone saying that the Exhortation isnt that bad. Or it doesn’t actually count as heresy. We have a heretic sitting on the Seat of Peter – Period!

camper - April 19, 2016

Amen, sister. I haven’t supported sedevacantism over Vatican II, but now I think we should.

c matt - April 19, 2016

The issue seems to be one of authority – PF may be a heretic, but it is up to the proper authorities to make that call and depose him/declare the seat empty. Much like if you see someone commit a crime, it is not up to you to jail him and try him. It is up to you to notify the authorities, testify, etc., but it is those authorities who are charged with determining guilt and punishment.

La Gallina - April 19, 2016

Sure. That sounded fine for the other post-Vatican2 popes. But now it’s just pure anti-Catholic poison spilling from Fran’s mouth and all of our Church leaders continue to assure us that Francis is fabulous, and nothing he says REALLY counts anyway. It’s all just the ramblings of a silly old man. Of course it doesn’t change the Faith, you silly old worry warts.

The Faith has been changed. It is time we stop pretending thst the Emperor’s clothes are beautiful, and call him out for the fraud that he is.

SoccerMom - April 19, 2016

C matt, thanks for your thoughts on this. Are you able to point out the source for this position in order to help clarify?
I had always given a lot of weight to St. Robert Bellarmine’s treatise On the Roman Pontiff where he argues that, “The fourth opinion is that of Cajetan, for whom the manifestly heretical Pope is not “ipso facto” deposed, but can and must be deposed by the Church. To my judgment, this opinion cannot be defended.” St. Robert goes on to explain that he sees this idea of the Church hierarchy judging and deposing the Pope as placing the authority of the rest of the hierarchy over that of the Pope, which is false:
“Besides that, the second affirmation of Cajetan, that the Pope heretic can be truly and authoritatively deposed by the Church, is no less false than the first. For if the Church deposes the Pope against his will it is certainly above the Pope…”
Instead, St. Robert argues that the pope-heretic, if there ever were one, would lose his office and jurisdiction by the sole act of public obstinacy in his heresy: “For, in the first place, it is proven with arguments from authority and from reason that the manifest heretic is “ipso facto” deposed. The argument from authority is based on St. Paul (Titus, c. 3), who orders that the heretic be avoided after two warnings, that is, after showing himself to be manifestly obstinate – which means before any excommunication or judicial sentence.”
If there is another reletatively authoritative source floating around arguing that the remaining hierarchy has the authority to judge and depose a Pope and that further, we lay people need to await the judgement of the remaining Church hierarchy before making a non-binding personal judgement on the legitimacy of Francis’ claim and refusing our submission to said pope-heretic based on this judgement (for the sake of fleeing the heretics and protecting our souls and the souls entrusted to us) I would sincerely appreciate for someone to share it or point it out. Thanks!

The larger exerpt of St Robert Bellarmine’s discourse can be found at http://strobertbellarmine.net/bellarm.htm

SoccerMom - April 20, 2016

Thank you, c matt, for your thoughts on this. Do you have a source or authority that you are able to point me to that argues that it is the hierarchy’s responsibility to depose a pope-heretic and declare the seat empty?
I know St Robert Bellarmine in his treatise, On the Roman Pontiff, argues at length that manifest heretics (popes included) IMMEDIATELY lose all jurisdiction by their failure to remain within the Church. He argues that a theoretical pope-heretic could be judged and punished by the remaining hierarchy AFTER the fact only because he has already lost his office and dignity. However, St Robert Bellarmine also argues that the hierarchy does not have the authority to DEPOSE or to pass judgement upon a reigning Pope because this would put the authority of the hierarchy above the authority of the pope, which it is not: “the second affirmation of Cajetan, that the Pope heretic can be truly and authoritatively deposed by the Church, is no less false than the first. For if the Church deposes the Pope against his will it is certainly above the Pope”
So here, at least, according to one doctor of the Church, the pope-heretic loses all jurisdiction BEFORE any ecclesial judgement or punishment takes place.
Do you know of any reputable authorities that argue that the faithful cannot avoid the manifest heretic, as St. Paul exhorts us to do, and refuse submission to one that we personally are convinced does not have jurisdiction, in order to protect the faith in our own souls and in the souls entrusted to our care? I would be sincerely interested in it! Thank you

St Robert’s treatise can be read in its full context here: http://strobertbellarmine.net/bellarm.htm

Branch - April 22, 2016

c matt, that question of needing the proper process to really determine the matter has been answered, I believe: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1c_JL8_Wa-k

15. SoccerMom - April 19, 2016

Thank you, again, for generously spending the time to share with us your thoughts and insights on the ongoing crisis in the Church. Being a new reader of the blog I was wondering if you have done any posts elaborating on why you still believe Francis is the Head of the Church that you may be able to point me to? I personally have been convinced for the past decade that the post Vatican II claimants (as well as most of the hierarchy) have lacked the faith and thus real jurisdiction, but would be interested in your thoughts on the topic since you seem to be a clear thinker. Thanks!

Tantumblogo - April 19, 2016

Not off the top of my head. A fundamental reason is cowardice. Not really. A major reason is being a former protestant, I find it intellectually impossible to say the entity that fundamentally brought me into the Church (that is, my recognition of the absolute need for authority and jurisdiction, etc) is now vacant. I’m simply unable to go there. I also think the implications of such are staggering. But my thoughts are not particularly well-formed, that’s simply a place I don’t let myself go, even as a thought exercise.

SoccerMom - April 20, 2016

Okay, thanks for taking the time to respond.

16. tg - April 19, 2016

The English title of “Joy of Love” bothers me too. Love is the word that everyone uses to justify relationships outside of true marriage. Remember the Love Wins motto. It’s like PF is giving in to them. Why wasn’t it named “Joy of Marriage”.

17. Branch - April 22, 2016

This recognize and yet resist position regarding the Pope has been taken down — it is not logical: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hp9vQJhJE8o

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