Prominent clergy, scholars accuse Pope Francis of heresy in open letter

Discussion in 'Church Critique' started by sparrow, May 1, 2019.

  1. sparrow

    sparrow Exitus ~ Reditus

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    Pope Francis holds the gospels during the Holy Chrism Mass on April 18, 2019, St. Peter's Basilica, Rome.VINCENZO PINTO/AFP/Getty Images
    [​IMG]Maike HicksonFollow Maike


    NEWSCATHOLIC CHURCHTue Apr 30, 2019 - 9:00 am EST

    Prominent clergy, scholars accuse Pope Francis of heresy in open letter
    Catholic, Heresy, Open Letter To Bishops, Pope Francis

    April 30, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Prominent clergymen and scholars including Fr. Aidan Nichols, one of the best-known theologians in the English-speaking world, have issued an open letter accusing Pope Francis of committing heresy. They ask the bishops of the Catholic Church, to whom the open letter is addressed, to "take the steps necessary to deal with the grave situation" of a pope committing this crime.

    The authors base their charge of heresy on the manifold manifestations of Pope Francis' embrace of positions contrary to the faith and his dubious support of prelates who in their lives have shown themselves to have a clear disrespect for the Church's faith and morals.

    "We take this measure as a last resort to respond to the accumulating harm caused by Pope Francis's words and actions over several years, which have given rise to one of the worst crises in the history of the Catholic Church," the authors state. The open letter is available in Dutch, Italian, German, French, and Spanish.

    Among the signatories are well-respected scholars such as Father Thomas Crean, Fr. John Hunwicke, Professor John Rist, Dr. Anna Silvas, Professor Claudio Pierantoni, Dr. Peter Kwasniewski, and Dr. John Lamont. The text is dated "Easter Week" and appears on the traditional Feast Day of St. Catherine of Siena, a saint who counseled and admonished several popes in her time.

    The 20-page document is a follow-up to the 2017 Filial Correction of Pope Francis that was signed originally by 62 scholars and which stated that the Pope has “effectively upheld 7 heretical positions about marriage, the moral life, and the reception of the sacraments, and has caused these heretical opinions to spread in the Catholic Church,” especially in light of his 2016 exhortation Amoris Laetitia.

    The authors of the open letter state in a summary of their letter (read below) that it has now become clear that Pope Francis is aware of his own positions contrary to the faith and that the time has come to go a "stage further" by claiming that Pope Francis is "guilty of the crime of heresy.”

    "We limit ourselves to accusing him of heresy on occasions where he has publicly denied truths of the faith, and then consistently acted in a way that demonstrates that he disbelieves these truths that he has publicly denied," the authors state.

    They clarify that they are not claiming Pope Francis has "denied truths of the faith in pronouncements that satisfy the conditions for an infallible papal teaching."

    "We assert that this would be impossible, since it would be incompatible with the guidance given to the Church by the Holy Spirit," they state.

    In light of this situation, the authors call upon the bishops of the Church to take action since a "heretical papacy may not be tolerated or dissimulated to avoid a worse evil.”

    For this reason, the authors “respectfully request the bishops of the Church to investigate the accusations contained in the letter, so that if they judge them to be well founded they may free the Church from her present distress, in accordance with the hallowed adage, Salus animarum prima lex (‘the salvation of souls is the highest law’). The bishops can do this, the writers suggest, “by admonishing Pope Francis to reject these heresies, and if he should persistently refuse, by declaring that he has freely deprived himself of the papacy.”

    The authors first present in detail – and with theological references to substantiate their claims – the different positions against the faith Pope Francis has shown himself to hold, propagate, or support, including “seven propositions contradicting divinely revealed truth.”

    One of the heresies the authors accuse Pope Francis of committing is expressed in the following proposition: “A Christian believer can have full knowledge of a divine law and voluntarily choose to break it in a serious matter, but not be in a state of mortal sin as a result of this action.” Many of these heretical statements touch on questions of marriage and the family and are to be found in Amoris Laetitia, but there is also a new claim made by Pope Francis in 2019 – namely, that the “diversity of religions” is “willed by God” – that is listed in the open letter.

    In one section of the open letter, the authors list the many prelates as well as lay people, who, despite openly dissenting from Catholic doctrine and morals — either by word or by deed — have been by Pope Francis either publicly praised (such as Emma Bonino) or raised to influential positions (such as Cardinal Oscar Rodrigez Maradiaga). On this list are names such as Cardinal Blase Cupich, Cardinal Godfried Danneels, Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Bishop Gustavo Zanchetta, and Bishop Juan Barros.

    The fact that Pope Francis never responded to the dubia (questions) concerning Amoris Laetitia published by Cardinals Carlo Caffarra, Joachim Meisner, Walter Brandmüller, and Raymond Burke is mentioned. Moreover, the authors point out that Pope Francis has changed the members of the Pontifical Academy for Life to such an extent that orthodox Catholic experts have been replaced by heterodox experts, such as Father Maurizio Chiodi.

    Addressing the bishops of the world – among whom are to be found all the present 222 cardinals – the authors of the open letter express their gratitude toward those bishops who have defended Catholic doctrine by their own personal witnesses.

    “We recognise with gratitude that some among you have reaffirmed the truths contrary to the heresies which we have listed, or else have warned of serious dangers threatening the Church in this pontificate,” they state. Here, the dubia cardinals, but also Cardinal Willem Eijk, are mentioned. The authors also thank Cardinal Gerhard Müller for his Manifesto of Faith.
     
  2. sparrow

    sparrow Exitus ~ Reditus

    The authors believe, however, that at this time in history, six years into the Francis pontificate, more is needed, namely a more direct and authoritative approach. They recognize their own limits when they tell the bishops: “Despite the evidence that we have put forward in this letter, we recognise that it does not belong to us to declare the pope guilty of the delict of heresy in a way that would have canonical consequences for Catholics."

    "We therefore appeal to you as our spiritual fathers, vicars of Christ within your own jurisdictions and not vicars of the Roman pontiff, publicly to admonish Pope Francis to abjure the heresies that he has professed. Even prescinding from the question of his personal adherence to these heretical beliefs, the Pope's behaviour in regard to the seven propositions contradicting divinely revealed truth, mentioned at the beginning of this Letter, justifies the accusation of the delict of heresy. It is beyond a doubt that he promotes and spreads heretical views on these points. Promoting and spreading heresy provides sufficient grounds in itself for an accusation of the delict of heresy. There is, therefore, superabundant reason for the bishops to take the accusation of heresy seriously and to try to remedy the situation,” they state.

    The authors make it clear that it is up to the bishops to take action and that they do not need a majority among the bishops to do so.

    "Since Pope Francis has manifested heresy by his actions as well as by his words, any abjuration must involve repudiating and reversing these actions, including his nomination of bishops and cardinals who have supported these heresies by their words or actions. Such an admonition is a duty of fraternal charity to the Pope, as well as a duty to the Church," they state.

    "If – which God forbid! – Pope Francis does not bear the fruit of true repentance in response to these admonitions, we request that you carry out your duty of office to declare that he has committed the canonical delict of heresy and that he must suffer the canonical consequences of this crime,” they add.

    Thus, the authors state, “these actions do not need to be taken by all the bishops of the Catholic Church, or even by a majority of them. A substantial and representative part of the faithful bishops of the Church would have the power to take these actions.”

    The full 20-page document may be read here. A select bibliography to support the case made in the open letter to the bishops of the Catholic Church about Pope Francis’ heresies may be read here.

    A petition launched by the organizers of the open letter to support their initiative can be found here.

    ***

    Summary of open letter to bishops as presented by the authors themselves:
    The Open letter to the bishops of the Catholic Church is the third stage in a process that began in the summer of 2016. At that time, an ad hoc group of Catholic clergy and scholars wrote a private letter to all the cardinals and Eastern Catholic patriarchs, pointing out heresies and other serious errors that appeared to be contained in or favoured by Pope Francis’s Apostolic Exhortation Amoris laetitia. The following year, after Pope Francis had continued by word, deed, and omission to propagate many of these same heresies, a ‘Filial Correction’ was addressed to the pope by many of the same people, as well as by other clergy and scholars. This second letter was made public in September 2017, and a petition in support of it was signed by some 14,000 people. The authors of that letter stated however that they did not seek to judge whether Pope Francis was aware that he was causing heresy to spread.

    The present Open letter to the bishops of the Catholic Church goes a stage further in claiming that Pope Francis is guilty of the crime of heresy. This crime is committed when a Catholic knowingly and persistently denies something which he knows that the Church teaches to be revealed by God. Taken together, the words and actions of Pope Francis amount to a comprehensive rejection of Catholic teaching on marriage and sexual activity, on the moral law, and on grace and the forgiveness of sins.

    The Open letter also indicates the link between this rejection of Catholic teaching and the favour shown by Pope Francis to bishops and other clergy who have either been guilty of sexual sins and crimes, such as former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, or who have protected clergy guilty of sexual sins and crimes, such as the late Cardinal Godfried Danneels. This protection and promotion of clerics who reject Catholic teaching on marriage, sexual activity, and on the moral law in general, even when these clerics personally violate the moral and civil law in horrendous ways, is consistent enough to be considered a policy on the part of Pope Francis. At the least it is evidence of disbelief in the truth of Catholic teaching on these subjects. It also indicates a strategy to impose rejection of these teachings on the Church, by naming to influential posts individuals whose personal lives are based on violation of these truths.

    The authors consider that a heretical papacy may not be tolerated or dissimulated to avoid a worse evil. It strikes at the basic good of the Church and must be corrected. For this reason, the study concludes by describing the traditional theological and legal principles that apply to the present situation. The authors respectfully request the bishops of the Church to investigate the accusations contained in the letter, so that if they judge them to be well founded, they may free the Church from her present distress, in accordance with the hallowed adage, Salus animarum prima lex (‘the salvation of souls is the highest law’). They can do this by admonishing Pope Francis to reject these heresies, and if he should persistently refuse, by declaring that he has freely deprived himself of the papacy.

    While this Open letter is an unusual, even historic, document, the Church’s own laws say that “Christ's faithful have the right, and, indeed, sometimes the duty, according to their knowledge, competence, and dignity, to manifest to the sacred pastors their judgment about those things which pertain to the good of the Church” (Code of Canon Law, canon 212.3). While Catholics hold that a pope speaks infallibly in certain strictly defined conditions, the Church does not say that he cannot fall into heresy outside these conditions.

    The signatories to the Open Letter include not only specialists in theology and philosophy, but also academics and scholars from other fields. This fits well with the central claim of the Open Letter, that Pope Francis’s rejection of revealed truths is evident to any well-instructed Catholic who is willing to examine the evidence. The signatures of Fr Aidan Nichols OP and of Professor John Rist will be noted. Fr Nichols is one of the best-known theologians in the English-speaking world, and the author of many books on a wide range of theological topics, including the work of Hans Urs von Balthasar and Joseph Ratzinger. Professor Rist, who is known for his work in classical philosophy and the history of theology, has held chairs and professorships at the University of Toronto, the Augustinianum in Rome, the Catholic University of America, the University of Aberdeen, and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

    The Open Letter is released just after the celebration of Holy Week and Easter Week, in the hopes that the present ‘passion’ of the Church will soon give way to a full resurrection of God’s saving truth.

    Clergy and academics who wish to sign the open letter may send their name and credentials to organizers at this email address: openlettertobishops@gmail.com. All requests will be thoroughly vetted.

    List of signers:

    • Georges Buscemi, President of Campagne Québec-Vie, member of the John-Paul II Academy for Human Life and Family
    • Robert Cassidy, STL
    • Fr Thomas Crean, OP
    • Matteo d’Amico, Professor of History and Philosophy, Senior High School of Ancona
    • Deacon Nick Donnelly, MA
    • Maria Guarini STB, Pontificia Università Seraphicum, Rome; editor of the website Chiesa e postconcilio
    • Prof. Robert Hickson, PhD, Retired Professor of Literature and of Strategic-Cultural Studies
    • Fr John Hunwicke, former Senior Research Fellow, Pusey House, Oxford
    • Peter Kwasniewski, PhD
    • John Lamont, DPhil (Oxon.)
    • Brian M. McCall, Orpha and Maurice Merrill Professor in Law; Editor-in-Chief of Catholic Family News
    • Fr Cor Mennen, JCL, diocese of ‘s-Hertogenbosch (Netherlands), canon of the cathedral Chapter. lecturer at de diocesan Seminary of ‘s-Hertogenbosch
    • Stéphane Mercier, STB, PhD, Former Lecturer at the Catholic University of Louvain
    • Fr Aidan Nichols, OP
    • Paolo Pasqualucci, Professor of Philosophy (retired), University of Perugia
    • Dr. Claudio Pierantoni, Professor of Medieval Philosophy, University of Chile; former Professor of Church History and Patrology at the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile
    • Professor John Rist
    • Dr. Anna Silvas, Adjunct Senior Research Fellow, Faculty of Humanities, Arts, Social Sciences and Education, University of New England
    • Prof. dr. W.J. Witteman, physicist, emeritus professor, University of Twente
     
  3. Lumena

    Lumena Archangels

    Does anyone know if one of the 7 named heresies relates to the Death penalty?
     
  4. Dolours

    Dolours Guest

    I don't think so, but here's a link to the document: https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/5983408-Open-Letter-to-the-Bishops-of-the-Catholic.html

    Jimmy Akin on a Catholic Answers phone-in made a pathetic attempt to rubbish the document. While he couldn't be expected to do a point-by-point examination and rebuttal of the document during a phone-in, he used the usual Pope Francis apologists' tactic of demeaning the messengers (dismissing their qualifications for lack of a PhD in Theology) rather than addressing the message.
    The call about the document is at the 48:48 point on this video:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=2932&v=hK7iDO6sV1M

    The questions at the end of the programme were about the Bishops' failure to excommunicate abortion supporting politicians and the change in Catechism on the death penalty. Jim Blackburn answered those questions. He urged Catholics to let their Bishops know how they feel about the situation with the abortion supporting politicians. On the death penalty, his opinion was that the Pope is not calling the death penalty intrinsically evil but is saying there are better ways to punish murderers at this time, and that Catholics are free to disagree with the Pope on this issue.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 1, 2019
  5. Lumena

    Lumena Archangels

    Thanks. There are many important things mentioned in it but so far I cannot find anything about the change Pope Francis made to the Catechism re the Death Penalty. However, I am thankful that many other troubling things were covered.
     
  6. Dolours

    Dolours Guest

    The letter will be ignored inasmuch as none of the issues will be addressed. The axe of mercy will likely fall on the signatories as it does on anyone defending the faith in today's Church. Let's hope they have independent means because the regime of mercy will watch them starve sooner than acknowledge that they have a right and a duty to remind the shepherds that the pink and red hats aren't just to get them free admission to the Sistine Chapel and Vatican museums.
     
  7. Dolours

    Dolours Guest

    Edward Pentin has the summary and full letter on his blog: https://edwardpentin.co.uk/father-aidan-nichols-signs-open-letter-charging-pope-francis-with-heresy/

    The letter includes a section dealing with the question of whether a Pope can be removed. Apparently it is possible to remove a Pope who is a heretic and obstinately refused to renounce the heresy (in some cases, it's referred to as committing a sin against the faith). We often see quoted the Canon which says "he, the one who is to judge all, is to be judged by none". I didn't know that the sentence doesn't end there but continues: "unless he be found straying from the faith". Apparently, and wisely, judging whether a Pope has strayed from the faith is a job for the Bishops and must come after repeated warnings. Here's the full text of the references to Canon Law (I've bolded the paragraphs from which I have quoted about whether a Pope can be judged) and it will take two posts to included all of it:

    Canon law and Catholic theology concerning the situation of a heretical pope

    The situation of a pope falling into heresy has long been a subject of discussion by Catholic theologians. This situation was brought into prominence after the ecumenical Third Council of Constantinople anathematized the Monothelite heresy in 681, and posthumously anathematized Pope Honorius for his support of this heresy; this condemnation of Honorius as a heretic was repeated by Pope St. Leo II when he ratified the acts of that Council. Since that time, Catholic theologians and canonists have reached a consensus on several essential points concerning the implications of a pope falling into public heresy. We will briefly present these points here.

    It is agreed that no pope can uphold heresy when teaching in a way that satisfies the conditions for an infallible magisterial statement. This restriction does not mean that a pope cannot be guilty of heresy, since popes can and do make many public statements that are not infallible; many popes indeed never issue an infallible definition.

    It is agreed that the Church does not have jurisdiction over the pope, and hence that the Church cannot remove a pope from office by an exercise of superior authority, even for the crime of heresy.

    It is agreed that the evil of a heretical pope is so great that it should not be tolerated for the sake of some allegedly greater good. Suarez expresses this consensus as follows: ‘It would be extremely harmful to the Church to have such a pastor and not be able to defend herself from such a grave danger; furthermore it would go against the dignity of the Church to oblige her to remain subject to a heretic Pontiff without being able to expel him from herself; for such as are the prince and the priest, so the people are accustomed to be.’ St Robert Bellarmine states: ‘Wretched would be the Church’s condition if she were forced to take as her pastor one who manifestly conducts himself as a wolf’ (Controversies, 3rd controversy, Bk. 2, cap. 30).

    It is agreed that ecclesiastical authorities have a responsibility to act to remedy the evil of a heretical pope. Most theologians hold that the bishops of the Church are the authorities that have an absolute duty to act in concert to remedy this evil.

    It is agreed that a pope who is guilty of heresy and remains obstinate in his heretical views cannot continue as pope.[6] Theologians and canonists discuss this question as part of the subject of the loss of papal office. The causes of the loss of papal office that they list always include death, resignation, and heresy. This consensus corresponds to the position of untutored common sense, which says that in order to be pope one must be a Catholic. This position is based on patristic tradition and on fundamental theological principles concerning ecclesiastical office, heresy, and membership of the Church.[7]The Fathers of the Church denied that a heretic could possess ecclesiastical jurisdiction of any kind. Later doctors of the Church understood this teaching as referring to public heresy that is subject to ecclesiastical sanctions, and held that it was based on divine law rather than ecclesiastical positive law. They asserted that a heretic of this kind could not exercise jurisdiction because their heresy separated them from the Church, and no-one expelled from the Church could exercise authority in it.[8]

    The canon law of the Church supports this theological consensus. The first canon to give explicit consideration to the possibility of papal heresy is found in the Decretum of Gratian. Distinctio XL, canon 6 of the Decretum states that the pope can be judged by no-one, unless he is found to have deviated from the faith:

    Cunctos ipse iudicaturus a nemine est iudicandus, nisi deprehendatur a fide devius (‘he, the one who is to judge all, is to be judged by none, unless he be found straying from the faith.’)


    The wording of this statement seems to have been influenced by Cardinal Humbert’s De sancta Romana ecclesia(1053), which stated that the pope is immune from judgment by anyone except in questions of faith: ‘a nemine est iudicandus nisi forte deprehendatur a fide devius.’ The claim made in the canon is a development of Pope Gregory the Great’s statement that evil prelates must be tolerated by their subjects if this can be done while saving the faith (Moralia XXV c. 16: ‘Subditi praelatos etiam malos tolerant, si salva fide possint …’).

    The canonical assertion that the pope can be judged for heresy came into being as an explication of the canonical principle that the pope is judged by no-one. The statement in this canon is an enunciation of a privilege; its object is to assert that the pope has the widest possible exemption from judgement by others.

    This canon was included, along with the rest of the Decretum of Gratian, in the Corpus iuris canonici, which formed the basis of canon law in the Latin Church until 1917. Its authority is supported by papal authority itself, since the canon law of the Church is upheld by papal authority. It was taught by Pope Innocent III, who asserted in his sermon on the consecration of the Supreme Pontiff that “God was his sole judge for other sins, and that he could be judged by the Church only for sins committed against the faith” [“In tantum enim fides mihi necessaria est, ut cum de caeteris peccatis solum Deum iudicium habeam, propter solum peccatum quod in fide committitur possem ab Ecclesia judicari.”] Rejection of the canon in the Decretum would undermine the canonical foundation for papal primacy itself, since this canon forms part of the legal basis for the principle that the Pope is judged by no-one.

    The canon was universally accepted by the Church after the compilation and publication of the Decretum. The heresy referred to in this canon is understood by virtually all authors to mean externally manifested heresy (the thesis that a pope loses his office for purely internal heresy was advanced by Juan de Torquemada O.P., but it has been conclusively refuted and has been rejected by all canonists and theologians ever since.) Neither the 1917 Code of Canon Law nor the 1983 Code of Canon Law abrogate the principle that a heretical pope loses the papal office. This is agreed by all commentators on these codes, who state that this principle is correct.[9]

    continued in next post.............
     
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  8. Dolours

    Dolours Guest

    continued from previous post/.......

    The early canonical tradition generally requires that in the specific case of papal heresy, the pope must be admonished several times before being treated as a heretic. The Summaof Rufinus, the Summa antiquitate et tempore (after 1170), and the Summaof Johannes Faventius (after 1171) all assert that the pope must be warned a second and third time to desist from heresy before he can be judged to be a heretic. The Summa of Huguccio states that before the pope can be judged a heretic, he must be admonished to abandon heresy and must contumaciously defend his error in response to such admonition.

    Sedevacantist authors have argued that a pope automatically loses the papal office as the result of public heresy, with no intervention by the Church being required or permissible. This opinion is not compatible with Catholic tradition and theology, and is to be rejected. Its acceptance would throw the Church into chaos in the event of a pope embracing heresy, as many theologians have observed. It would leave each individual Catholic to decide whether and when the pope could be said to be a heretic and to have lost his office. It should instead be accepted that the pope cannot fall from office without action by the bishops of the Church.[10]Such action must include adjuring the pope more than once to reject any heresies that he has embraced, and declaring to the faithful that he has become guilty of heresy if he refuses to renounce these heresies. The incompatibility between heresy and membership of the Church is what leads to the loss of the papal office by a heretical pope. The Church’s determining that a pope is a heretic, and the announcement of his heresy by the bishops of the Church, is what makes the pope’s heresy a juridical fact, a fact from which his loss of office ensues.

    There are some lesser differences of opinion between Catholic theologians concerning the measures that the Church must take in dealing with a heretical pope. The school of Cajetan and John of St. Thomas asserts that in order for the papal office to be lost, the Church, after ascertaining and pronouncing that the pope is a heretic, must also command the faithful to avoid him for his heresy. The school of St. Robert Bellarmine does not reject the step of commanding the faithful to avoid the pope as a heretic, but it does not consider it a necessary precondition for the pope’s losing office for heresy. Both these schools have adherents, up to and including the present day. We do not take a position on these disputed questions, whose resolution is a matter for the bishops of the Church.
     
  9. SgCatholic

    SgCatholic Guest

    This is a really important point.
    Thanks for highlighting it, Dolours.
     
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  10. Dolours

    Dolours Guest

    It clears up a few questions I had about papal infallibility and Church teaching on free will. That said, it isn't clear from the document whether the canon as quoted is in the current code of canon law or whether it was removed during some revision.

    I'm not at all comfortable with the idea of attempting to remove a reigning Pope but I'm glad that there is some means of getting a Pope to stop acting the maggot with Church teaching. It strikes me as ludicrous that Honorius 1 could be anathematised after his death but not while he was alive when he could have corrected his error.
     
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  11. SgCatholic

    SgCatholic Guest

    I am even more uncomfortable with the idea of allowing him to remain as pope and continue to wreak havoc on the Church and souls of the faithful.
    Having said that, I guess most everyone here knows what I think of the status of each of the 2 popes we have at present.
     
  12. Dolours

    Dolours Guest

    Yes, it's a question of which would be worse: letting a bad Pope continue to harm the faith or causing a rift in the Church by formally taking him to task. We have Bishops to make that kind of call.

    Carol posted a link to the Catholic News Agency's report about the letter. They quoted a few people who dismissed it. One in particular struck me as peculiar. It was on the question of Amoris Laetitia which the person said CAN be understood to be in line with Church teaching. That seems to be to be a rather low standard for an Apostolic Exhortation. Leaves me wondering whether the University's standards are equally low for their students.
     
  13. Praetorian

    Praetorian Powers

    This is going to get messy...
     
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  14. SgCatholic

    SgCatholic Guest

    We know PF ordered that his letter in response to the Buenos Aires bishops' (heretical) guidelines for the interpretation of Amoris Laetitia be published on the Vatican website and in the "Acta Apostolicae Sedis," the official record of Vatican documents and acts.
    PF said the bishops' document "explains precisely the meaning of Chapter VIII of 'Amoris Laetitia" and that there are no other interpretations.
    He described them as "authentic magisterium".

    Cardinal Coccopalmerio, president of the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts, told Catholic News Service, "The fact that the pope requested that his letter and the interpretations of the Buenos Aires bishops be published in the AAS means that His Holiness has given these documents a particular qualification that elevates them to the level of being official teachings of the church.

    "While the content of the pope's letter itself does not contain teachings on faith and morals, it does point toward the interpretations of the Argentine bishops and confirms them as authentically reflecting his own mind," the cardinal said. "Thus together the two documents became the Holy Father's authentic magisterium for the whole church."

    So, if that is official teaching of the church, that means PF taught heresy in an 'infallible' church document, right?
    Since that cannot be true, as the Holy Spirit will not allow it, then it means that it happened simply because he is not actually pope?
     
  15. Dolours

    Dolours Guest

    I don't think it's as simple as that. Heresy probably means that he has rejected the Holy Spirit's guidance and the special grace which goes with the office but that still doesn't mean that anyone has the authority to remove him from office. It seems to be that the most the Bishops can do is instruct the faithful to avoid and ignore him but we all know that the Bishops won't do that. Only four of them cared enough to put their names to the Dubia.

    The leaders of Ignatius Press have made a statement about the letter. They dithered about whether or not the heresy case has been made but said that Rome should respond. Considering that Fr. Fesio is a faithful priest and a Jesuit, that's about the most he could say. Believe it or not, Jesuits pledge allegiance to the Pope although it's only since the election of Pope Francis that many of the more prominent Jesuits pay any attention to it. Here's a link to the Ignatius Press video:
     
  16. Praetorian

    Praetorian Powers

    No, there are several different levels and types of Mmagisterium. Only the absolute highest is guaranteed to be infallible. Popes deliver many different teachings on faith and morals during their pontificates, but most Popes never issue infallible statements. It is generally understood that the guarantee of the Holy Spirit is only in regards to statements that the Pope issues which he declares to be infallible.
     
  17. SgCatholic

    SgCatholic Guest

    Has any previous pope released an official church document that contains heresy?
     
  18. SgCatholic

    SgCatholic Guest

    Well, with this open letter that's just been released, PF has been admonished 3 times already.
     
  19. Dolours

    Dolours Guest

    There was something about Honorius 1 and a letter he wrote to Sergius but there were arguments about whether it proved him to be a formal or material heretic. I can't remember all the details I read about it but it was used at Vatican 1 in opposition to papal infallibility and is probably one of the reasons, if the not the main reason, why the doctrine of infallibility is so narrowly defined (essentially confined to ex-cathedra statements).

    Yes but not three times by Bishops, as far as we know.

    Even if he ignores this letter like he did the filial correction and the Dubia, they can be used in future to stop, say, a Pope Maradiaga, Cupich or Marx declaring fornication, adultery or sodomy to be good and permissable for Catholics because they are proof that what Pope Francis has surreptitiously enabled in Amoris Laetitia has not been openly taught or widely accepted in the Church.

    I think that the Abu Dhabi agreement is about getting more Arab money for elitist Jesuit universities' Islamic Studies departments. If they do to Islam what they have done to Catholicism, former Muslim "nones" will be the world's fastest growing demographic. Who needs a crusade when we've got Jesuit colleges.
     
  20. Praetorian

    Praetorian Powers

    I don't know. We don't have all of the writings of all of the Popes. We do know that some Popes seem to have held views at variance with Catholic Teaching. The most extreme example who is usually held up would be Pope Honorious. He was declared a heretic posthumously at the Sixth, Seventh and Eight Ecumenical Councils. Today we don't know all of the facts of that case though. Much has been lost to time.

    Still, even though the proper authorities branded him a heretic, they never said he lost the papacy and he remains on the list of valid popes to this day.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2019

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