Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Part II: The Papal Posse/Papal Hanging Mob Attacks Pope Francis



In my last post, HERE, I began to review the EWTN World Over broadcast regarding the Apostolic Exhortation, GAUDETE ET EXSULTATE.  I showed how the self-labeled Papal Posse, consisting of Raymond Arroyo, Robert Royal and Fr. Gerald Murray, clearly have no clue as to what they are talking about.  I renamed this group the Papal Hanging Mob because it seems that is what they would like to do with Pope Francis.  They criticize and condemn Pope Francis on almost everything he says and does.  The "Papal Posse" seem intent on turning Catholics against the Holy Father.  They don't seem realize that their comments only prove everything the Pope has written.  Pray for their souls.

I was only able to get into the first few minutes of the broadcast in my first post.  I am picking up here where I left off.  Here is the video.  I am starting at about 15:30 in the video.


Arroyo turns to another subject for a moment, the Holy Father's homily at the Chrism Mass.  You can read the full text of that homily HERE.

Arroyo gives us the following quote from the homily:
We must be careful not to fall into the temptation of making idols of certain abstract truths. They can be comfortable idols, always within easy reach; they offer a certain prestige and power and are difficult to discern. Because the “truth-idol” imitates, it dresses itself up in the words of the Gospel, but does not let those words touch the heart. Much worse, it distances ordinary people from the healing closeness of the word and of the sacraments of Jesus.
Arroyo, in unfamiliar fashion, actually did not leave anything out of this quote.  But then, staying true to form, he did not give us any of the context of this quote, nothing before or after.  It is just sits there by itself.  We need to see what came before and after to fully understand it.

The theme of Pope Francis' homily was "closeness".  He begins his homily with this statement:
When I was reading the texts of today’s liturgy, I kept thinking of the passage from Deuteronomy: “For what great nation is there that has a god so near to it as the Lord our God is to us, whenever we call upon him?” (4:7). The closeness of God... our apostolic closeness.
In the reading from the prophet Isaiah, we contemplate the Servant, “anointed and sent” among his people, close to the poor, the sick, the prisoners… and the Spirit who is “upon him”, who strengthens and accompanies him on his journey.

In Psalm 88, we see how the closeness of God, who led King David by the hand when he was young, and sustained him as he grew old, takes on the name of fidelity: closeness maintained over time is called fidelity.
Pope Francis then referred to the Gospel of that Mass which describes the beginning of Jesus' public ministry when he stood up and read Isaiah 61 in the temple. Pope Francis explains that while Jesus read with the proficiency of a scribe, his goal was to be a "street preacher," to be close to the people. As the Holy Father said, "The Preacher is always close."

In the paragraph immediately preceding the one quoted by Raymond Arroyo, Pope Francis shows that we cannot evangelize without being close to people.  As the Holy Father says, closeness is crucial:
Closeness, dear brothers, is crucial for an evangelizer because it is a key attitude in the Gospel (the Lord uses it to describe his Kingdom). We can be certain that closeness is the key to mercy, for mercy would not be mercy unless, like a Good Samaritan, it finds ways to shorten distances. But I also think we need to realize even more that closeness is also the key to truth; not just the key to mercy, but the key to truth. Can distances really be shortened where truth is concerned? Yes, they can. Because truth is not only the definition of situations and things from a certain distance, by abstract and logical reasoning. It is more than that. Truth is also fidelity (émeth). It makes you name people with their real name, as the Lord names them, before categorizing them or defining “their situation”. There is a distasteful habit, is there not, of following a “culture of the adjective”: this is so, this is such and such, this is like… No! This is a child of God. Then come the virtues or defects, but [first] the faithful truth of the person and not the adjective regarded as the substance.
I find the last sentence of that paragraph to be truly profound. Pope Francis is telling us that when we see people, before anything else we must see that "This is a child of God."  Truth, according to Pope Francis, means you "name people with their real name" or, in other words, we see people first as individuals.  Only then "comes the virtues or defects, but first the faithful truth of the person and not the adjective regarded as the substance."

Oh if we could only learn this lesson.  That has been my problem with all of the trads/conservatives who sit in judgment of others.  They don't see individuals.  They don't see children of God.  As Pope Francis says here, they categorize people, defining "their situation."  All they see are sinners in need of condemnation.

As Pope Francis reminds us that first and foremost we should see each individual as a child of God, he warns us about making idols of "certain abstract truths."  How do we make idols of "abstract truths"?  It is when we see only the rules and not the people.  It is believing that man was made for the Sabbath, not Sabbath for the man.  This is what the Pharisees did.  Jesus healed a man on the Sabbath and then told him to pick up his mat.  The Pharisees were completely blind to the great miracle that had occurred because they were so focused on the fact that the man broke the Sabbath by picking up his mat. Obedience to the tradition of the Sabbath was far more important than the healing of this man.

When we make an idol of abstract truth, we put supreme importance on the actions of people and how well they conform to the rules.  We give no importance to who they are as individuals.  We are telling people, you are only of importance to the extent that you obey and conform to the rules.  This completely destroys the closeness that is so necessary to evangelization, and people are lost as a result.

But I am afraid our Papal Posse a/k/a Papal Hanging Mob, has no clue as Fr. Murray tells us:
Well, when I read that, I was pretty shocked, because truth is not an idol. In fact, to call abstract truth, which basically means doctrines which are written down on paper, you can't touch a document but you can think about it, and it has the force of the truth because it's revealed by God or it's part of the Natural Law, when I read that the Pope is saying you can make that into an idol, I was very stunned because the truth is the remedy to idolatry. Let's not forget that in the world of paganism, before the coming of Christ, immorality and evil were the result of people erring because they didn't know the truth. When Christ brought the truth, fulfillment of the hope of Israel, the Light of the World suddenly shown on the whole world, and this is what we have now. We have Christianity with a definite body of teaching and doctrine, and we believe it fully. This [is] very, very troubling, and I would say, to the Holy Father, the problem in the modern world is not that people think that truth is an idol. They just don't care about the truth because it is not being defended properly. And that's our goal. We gotta tell people, look, here's the truth, we are going to defend it against error, and we are going to make sure that society understands it. If you don't live by the truth, the alternative is a dictatorship, the alternative is chaos, communism, Nazism, whatever you want to look at historically. No truth basically comes under who has the biggest stick and who kills the most enemies. That's not the way justice is achieved in society.
Do you see how Fr. Murray's statement is actually is a prime example of "making idols of certain abstract truths"? Nowhere in Fr. Murray's statement does he show any concern for individuals. Unlike Jesus Christ, Fr. Murray does not see sheep in need of a shepherd. He does not want to gather people "as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings" (Mt. 23:37). His only concern is for the "truth."
Fr. Murray does not see love and mercy as a remedy.

As he quite plainly says, "the truth is the remedy to idolatry." Fr. Murray tries to tell us that "in the world of paganism, before the coming of Christ, immorality and evil were the result of people erring because they didn't know the truth." Fr. Murray seems to forget that no one knew "the truth" better than the Pharisees.  They could recite the law backwards and forwards.  Like Fr. Murray, they were "experts" in the law.  But with all of their knowledge, the Pharisees rejected Christ.

Contrariwise, pagan kings, supposedly ignorant of the law, recognized the Christ Child and worshiped Him at His Birth.  How did the pagans recognize Christ?  They allowed themselves to get close to Him.  They were drawn to Christ first, and as a result, they discovered Truth.


Fr. Murray's greatest concern is not for the lost people of our world, but for the fact that these "truths" are being ignored by the world. As he tells us, "They just don't care about the truth because it is not being defended properly." And what is Fr. Murray's plan of action? "We gotta tell people, look, here's the truth, we are going to defend it against error, and we are going to make sure that society understands it." 

Fr. Murray seems to have no interest in reaching out to people with love and compassion. He certainly has no interest in getting close to people, rejecting Pope Francis' words that "Closeness, dear brothers, is crucial for an evangelizer."  As I have said before, Fr. Murray and all those trads/conservatives who think like him believe only in hit-and-run ministry:  preach the truth, tell people to accept it or they are going to hell, and then leave.

In an almost laughable statement if it wasn't so sad, after Fr. Murray tells us that he is basically going to club people with the truth, i.e. "we are going to defend it against error, and we are going to make sure that society understands it", he then tells us that the reason for dictatorships is because people won't accept the truth.  He actually has the gall to say:  "No truth basically comes under who has the biggest stick and who kills the most enemies. That's not the way justice is achieved in society."  This is coming from a man who wants to yield truth like a big stick.

Arroyo, instead of giving more quotes from the Chrism homily, turns to Robert Royal and tells us what other people are saying:
I had letters from people who are certainly not churched people who read that and said, I agree with the Pope. There is a big truth-idol in all these organized religions.  I'm the person who is out here discerning my truth, and that is what we have to live.  You would say what?
Anyone who reads the Pope's sermon knows this is not at all what the Pope is saying. He is not telling us that we can "discern our own truth." He is warning us that preaching truth without compassion and empathy, without closeness, will keep us from being effective evangelizers because "it distances ordinary people from the healing closeness of the word and of the sacraments of Jesus." But it seems that Robert Royal doesn't understand this message, either, as he tells us:
That's the whole problem with the modern world.  The back drop of the modern world is a dead scientific materialism in which there are no values instantiated in the world.  There is no God, we all make up our own truths.  And that starts to bleed over into the Church itself.  Now look, the Pope wants to say that certain priests and bishops are too hardline.  There may be some.  I have to say I don't really see that that's the case, but I would like to see a greater emphasis on the right uses of the truth.  That we begin to introduce people into why it is this will make your life happier.  We have tremendous sociological data that shows that people who are in stable marriages. who stay married, have children, you carry out all those functions that use to be part of human life.  The people who do that live well, are happier than their counterparts in the modern world.  . . . So there is something that has to be fought here.  And I have to say that overall, since the very beginning, the Pope has not really wanted to argue these things.  He kind of walks away from these questions about truth and dogma because they are hard, and we understand he is trying to invite people in, but we cannot lose this.  Otherwise, we have nothing to offer people.  
Once again, as stated in my previous post, Royal believes that if people can just have the right knowledge, they will live happier lives.  As he says, "I would like to see a greater emphasis on the right uses of the truth." There is nothing from him or any of the others about the need for an actual relationship with Jesus Christ, who is Truth.  There is no acknowledgment of the need for grace. Royal believes if we just have an intellectual grasp of the truth, then all of our problems will be solved.  This is the very definition of "truth-idol."

Royal tells us that, "I have to say that overall, since the very beginning, the Pope has not really wanted to argue these things. He kind of walks away from these questions about truth and dogma because they are hard." Contrary to this accusation, Pope Francis has not walked away from anything.  He is out there preaching the Gospel and doing everything he can to bring the Love of God to the world. But the Papal Posse have hardened their hearts and minds and are totally unable to understand this concept.

That last sentence from Royal says it all "Otherwise, we have nothing to offer people."  The entire theme of Pope Francis's sermon is that we have to offer people more than truth - we have to offer them the love, mercy and forgiveness of Jesus Christ which will then lead people to truth.  Pope Francis tells us that people will never be able to come to the truth without the closeness of Jesus Christ.  But the Papal Posse believe in the truth-idol - they believe that intellectual understanding of the truth is all that is needed.

In his homily, Pope Francis tells us this:
A priest who is close to his people walks among them with the closeness and tenderness of a good shepherd; in shepherding them, he goes at times before them, at times remains in their midst and at other times walks behind them. Not only do people greatly appreciate such a priest; even more, they feel that there is something special about him: something they only feel in the presence of Jesus. That is why discerning our closeness to them is not simply one more thing to do. In it, we either make Jesus present in the life of humanity or let him remain on the level of ideas, letters on a page, incarnate at most in some good habit gradually becoming routine.
This paragraph is the definition of true evangelization.  The Papal Hanging Mob believe that all we need to do is shove truth down people's throats whether they want it or not.  If people decide not to accept "truth", then it's not our problem.  We've done our job and now we can just walk away.  But our Lord never walks away from anyone.  He calls to each and every one of us every moment of our lives.  We can do no less.  We must get as close to people as they will allow us to.

I will continue in my analysis of this Papal Hanging Mob broadcast in my next post.



4 comments:

  1. Catholic in Brooklyn, do you think that Michael Voris will start publicly bashing Pope Francis in the near future?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If it suits his purposes. He has no scruples.

      Delete
    2. Catholic in Brooklyn, check out the following URL:

      https://www.churchmilitant.com/news/article/cm-interviews-author-of-dictator-pope

      Delete
    3. The pope says division in the Church is evil and he has rejected the dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus while many Catholics still affirm it.
      This is division. It is evil, I agree.

      He affirms Vatican Council II interpreted with a false premise which creates a rupture with Tradition. This is division. Since I too affirm Vatican Council II but without the irrational premise.
      I affirm the Catechism of the Catholic Church(1994) in harmony with the dogma outside the Church there is no salvation. So there is no rupture with Tradition. He uses the false premise. So the Catechism becomes a rupture with the past exclusivist ecclesiology of the Church. This is irrational and it is division.
      There are cardinals, bishops and priest who give the Eucharist to pro-abortion politicals and practising homosexuals. This is evil approved by the pope.
      These are only some of the many examples of the new evil within the Church-Lionel Andrades

      Delete

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