Author Topic: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith  (Read 13354 times)

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Offline petros22

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Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« on: January 28, 2017, 06:05:09 PM »
Okay so some of you may remember me, I posted on here a little last Spring asking about Orthodox Easter liturgies. I am a Catholic convert from Anglicanism.

Over the last few months, I have really found my faith being tested following all the controversy about Amoris Laetitia. Papal infallibility has always been a pretty hard sell for me and as far as I can see this document is clearly against the long standing teachings of the church. That means infallibility must be wrong, surely? I've been driving myself mad trying to work this one out logically, but this (along with Pope Francis constant attacks on traditionalist and conservative attitudes and people) is really making me wonder how a man who talks like this can really be the Vicar of Christ. If there even is such a position. And then there is the amount of division this is causing, it seems the Roman church is tearing itself in two.

I just really need to get a non-Catholic take on this to try to get some perspective. Had anyone here had any thoughts on AL and the implications it will have? I'd appreciate any points of view or words of wisdom.
Almighty God, unto whom all hearts be open, all desires known, and from whom no secretes are hid: cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of thy holy spirit, that we may perfectly love thee, and worthily magnify thy holy name: through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Offline xOrthodox4Christx

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2017, 06:14:29 PM »
I think Amoris Laetitia simply puts into words what Roman practice has been for a while. I really am not surprised, because there are just so many contradictions in Roman doctrine and teaching.
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Online rakovsky

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2017, 06:16:08 PM »
The RC teaching is that infallible statements are those by the Ecumenical Councils or those made by the Pope "ex cathedra" and accepted by the Church. Do either apply to the Amoris. Laetitia?

EOs reject Papal infallibility, and so even did Popes commonly up to maybe the 19th-20th c. One 19th-20th c. Pope rejected it, because he felt it was actually a huge noncanonical constraint on him. It meant that if he or his predecessor personally made some theological statement on behalf of and accepted by the church, he could NEVER EVER contradict it. Something like that is better left to Councils, if at all.
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Offline xOrthodox4Christx

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2017, 06:28:55 PM »
The RC teaching is that infallible statements are those by the Ecumenical Councils or those made by the Pope "ex cathedra" and accepted by the Church. Do either apply to the Amoris. Laetitia?

EOs reject Papal infallibility, and so even did Popes commonly up to maybe the 19th-20th c. One 19th-20th c. Pope rejected it, because he felt it was actually a huge noncanonical constraint on him. It meant that if he or his predecessor personally made some theological statement on behalf of and accepted by the church, he could NEVER EVER contradict it. Something like that is better left to Councils, if at all.

Ah, yes. Papal Infallibility was rejected by the Orthodox Church, and the Roman Catholic Church itself rejected the idea until Pope Pius IX forced it through the council. 1/3rd of the Vatican I fathers didn't accept the idea of infallibility, but Pope Pius IX basically rigged the number of ultramontane Bishops to support him and he forcibly pushed it through the council. Papal infallibility is a tough pill for me to swallow because I don't know which Papal statements to take seriously and which to reject. Are Jews reprobate? Most Popes say yes, some Popes say no. Is Purgatory a literal fire? Popes disagree. Is the liturgy irreformable? Popes disagree. That's why I cannot accept the idea until there is a good explanation that fits with me. Even if there was a good explanation, there's no guarantee I would join Rome though. It's still in a mess, even if they had some explanation.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2017, 06:29:05 PM by xOrthodox4Christx »
“There is your brother, naked, crying, and you stand there confused over the choice of an attractive floor covering.”- St. Ambrose of Milan

"Now one cannot be a half-hearted Christian, but only entirely or not at all." -Fr. Seraphim Rose

"He who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen." (1 John 4:20)

Offline benjohn146

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2017, 05:11:51 PM »
My friend, just have a look at the history of the Church and you will see, historically, that the Orthodox Church is Christ's true Church. History will show you the root of the RCC's heresies when they left the Faith and the Church of Christ.

I can suggest to read "The Orthodox Church" by Metropolitan Kallistos Ware which is very enlightening in my opinion. I was RC too and that book helped me a lot to see clearer with all the falsehood and the distortion taught by Rome.

Praying that you may find the Lord in your journey.
St Makarios, pray for us.

Online rakovsky

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2017, 06:54:12 PM »
My friend, just have a look at the history of the Church and you will see, historically, that the Orthodox Church is Christ's true Church. History will show you the root of the RCC's heresies when they left the Faith and the Church of Christ.

I can suggest to read "The Orthodox Church" by Metropolitan Kallistos Ware which is very enlightening in my opinion. I was RC too and that book helped me a lot to see clearer with all the falsehood and the distortion taught by Rome.

Praying that you may find the Lord in your journey.
+1
So far as the various divisions and schisms in the Church can be seen over the years, the EO church has been orthodox.
The ocean, impassable by men, and the world beyond it are directed by the same ordinances of the Master. ~ I Clement 20

Offline PJ26

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2017, 06:56:27 PM »
Hi petros,

Were you looking for a "non-Catholic take" on the issue of infallibility?  Any non-Catholic by definition would reject that teaching.  If there's a non-Catholic out there who believes in papal infallibility, they should convert to Catholicism.  Something to prayerfully keep in mind if you yourself are struggling with that particular teaching is that the First Vatican Council anathematizes any Catholic who rejects it.  As such I'm not sure how any Catholic who takes their faith seriously can deny that teaching and still call themselves Catholic or believe that Catholicism is the true church.

As for Amoris Laetitia - it is not an infallible document strictly speaking, but it is a magisterial document and must be read within the context of what the Catholic church teaches about the papacy.  Many traditionalists and conservatives, led by the likes of Cardinal Burke, are trying to convince themselves and others that it is not so because of the implications that necessarily follow.  However, when one recalls that Pope Francis himself said that his interviews were part of his official papal magisterium and had the Vatican's printing office print them as such, it's frankly absurd to suggest that an apostolic exhortation written at the conclusion of two church synods is somehow not magisterial.

That said remember what Catholicism teaches about the papacy which from a Catholic perspective is infallible.  The two most recent (supposedly) ecumenical councils - Vaticans I and II - state the following:

"Wherefore we teach and declare that, by divine ordinance, the Roman Church possesses a pre-eminence of ordinary power over every other Church, and that this jurisdictional power of the Roman Pontiff is both episcopal and immediate. Both clergy and faithful, of whatever rite and dignity, both singly and collectively, are bound to submit to this power by the duty of hierarchical subordination and true obedience, and this not only in matters concerning faith and morals, but also in those which regard the discipline and government of the Church throughout the world." - Pastor Aeternus

"Religious submission of mind and will must be shown in a special way to the authentic magisterium of the Roman Pontiff, even when he is not speaking ex cathedra; that is, it must be shown in such a way that his supreme magisterium is acknowledged with reverence, the judgments made by him are sincerely adhered to, according to his manifest mind and will." - Lumen Gentium

The issue of divorce, remarriage, and communion is certainly one of faith, morals, and discipline, and Amoris Laetitia, while not ex cathedra, requires the reverential obedience of the Catholic faithful assuming that the above teachings are true.

When I was in the seminary we had a professor who repeatedly stressed to us that God gave us both faith and reason and that we could not rely on one to the exclusion of the other.  These issues have to be looked at not just with faith but with reason as well.  You mention logic - when you boil it all down - here are your only logical, reasonable options:

1. What the Catholic church teaches about the papacy is true and Francis is truly the pope.  However, what that means, as we are discovering, is that moral truth is not objective but subjective.  That's what Jesus meant in the passage in Matthew's gospel where he bestows the keys on Saint Peter, that what was once bound on earth can now be loosed.  Today, it's the definition of adultery, tomorrow it's homosexuality or abortion or who knows what, and a pope can contradict his predecessors and/or the teachings of councils because he holds the keys and has that power.

2. What the Catholic church teaches about the papacy is true but Francis is not really pope.  That will lead you to sedevacantism in some form - either the traditional "there hasn't been a real pope since Pius XII" version espoused by people like those on the website Novus Ordo Watch or the seemingly growing "resignationist" version where the resignation of Benedict XVI was invalid and therefore he's still pope and Francis is not.  To accept that you have to believe that the 99.99% of the world which thinks that Francis is pope is wrong and that includes Benedict himself who recognizes the reality of Francis' papacy.

3. Francis is pope, but what Catholicism teaches about the papacy is false which leads to Orthodoxy.

Some people are trying to construct for themselves a false middle ground.  The so-called "recognize and resist" option, popular among traditionalists that often leads its proponents to parishes run by traditional orders like the Fraternity of Saint Peter, or to the newly created Ordinariate, or to Eastern rite Catholic churches.  But a better, more reverent liturgy, is really just a placebo for such individuals, an effort to escape from reality rather than confront it.  All such groups are under the full authority of Pope Francis and in full communion with the church in Malta which, largely based on Amoris Laetitia, just approved communion for those divorced and civilly remarried Catholics who are "at peace" with the choices they have made, rejecting the explicit and "infallible" doctrine of the Catholic church.

Religion, like politics, involves A LOT of emotion, but I hope that you will be able to put some of that aside and prayerfully look at these matters with logic and reason.  A crisis of faith, although painful and traumatic, can be a great blessing in the end if it leads you to the truth.  May God bless you and guide you in your journey.


Offline petros22

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #7 on: January 30, 2017, 08:13:19 PM »
Thanks everyone for the input and thank you especially PJ26. The three numbered points you gave are very much along the lines I have been thinking. I have been thinking along the lines of point 3, that the pope is not infallible, does not have primacy amoungst all bishops or really any special status beyond being the Catholic Church's chief administrator. I am in fact a member of the Ordinariate as I converted to Catholicism from the Church of England. The liturgy is beautiful. But I am feeling more and more like the RC is rapidly departing from Biblical truths under the leadership of someone with frankly very dangerous and possibly heretical views. This is an issue I will not be able to resolve any time soon, it will require a lot of thought and prayer. I will be considering whether to stay where I am, consider becoming Orthodox, or perhaps consider returning to my Anglican roots. I will not be making any decisions in a hurry but I am very grateful for some perspective on the matter.
Almighty God, unto whom all hearts be open, all desires known, and from whom no secretes are hid: cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of thy holy spirit, that we may perfectly love thee, and worthily magnify thy holy name: through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Online rakovsky

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #8 on: January 30, 2017, 09:45:52 PM »
consider becoming Orthodox, or perhaps consider returning to my Anglican roots. I will not be making any decisions in a hurry but I am very grateful for some perspective on the matter.
I don't see how Anglicanism is better in terms of post-Early-Church revisionism, especially wrt marital issues. Right now the Anglican communion is very divided, with the ECUSA under suspension for gay marriage issues AFAIK.

« Last Edit: January 30, 2017, 09:47:07 PM by rakovsky »
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Offline PJ26

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #9 on: January 30, 2017, 10:15:50 PM »

Online rakovsky

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #10 on: January 30, 2017, 10:41:46 PM »
The ocean, impassable by men, and the world beyond it are directed by the same ordinances of the Master. ~ I Clement 20

Offline xOrthodox4Christx

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #11 on: January 30, 2017, 11:16:18 PM »
Anglicanism is worse than Rome. If I wasn't Orthodox, I would probably not be a Christian. Protestantism's two main points, Sola Scriptura and Sola Fide are inherently in contradiction. Sola Fide is not in the Bible, and Sola Scriptura says the Bible is the sole necessary authority. So, which is it? If it's the former, then you reject the latter. If it's the latter, you must reject the former. Furthermore, in terms of "the Bible" which parts are infallible? Is all of it infallible? Then why not sacrifice rams for sin? If only some of it is infallible, it's up to you to figure out which bits.

In any event, I stay away from Rome because I realize that a) I don't assent to their dogmas, b) even if I did assent to their dogmas, I would be a traditionalist type anyway and c) if I was a traditionalist type, I would be disgusted by the Novus Ordo masses anyway, so I probably wouldn't attend to often anyway.

I like where I am right now.
“There is your brother, naked, crying, and you stand there confused over the choice of an attractive floor covering.”- St. Ambrose of Milan

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Offline servulus

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #12 on: January 31, 2017, 12:19:05 AM »
Hi petros,

Were you looking for a "non-Catholic take" on the issue of infallibility?  Any non-Catholic by definition would reject that teaching.  If there's a non-Catholic out there who believes in papal infallibility, they should convert to Catholicism.  Something to prayerfully keep in mind if you yourself are struggling with that particular teaching is that the First Vatican Council anathematizes any Catholic who rejects it.  As such I'm not sure how any Catholic who takes their faith seriously can deny that teaching and still call themselves Catholic or believe that Catholicism is the true church.

As for Amoris Laetitia - it is not an infallible document strictly speaking, but it is a magisterial document and must be read within the context of what the Catholic church teaches about the papacy.  Many traditionalists and conservatives, led by the likes of Cardinal Burke, are trying to convince themselves and others that it is not so because of the implications that necessarily follow.  However, when one recalls that Pope Francis himself said that his interviews were part of his official papal magisterium and had the Vatican's printing office print them as such, it's frankly absurd to suggest that an apostolic exhortation written at the conclusion of two church synods is somehow not magisterial.

That said remember what Catholicism teaches about the papacy which from a Catholic perspective is infallible.  The two most recent (supposedly) ecumenical councils - Vaticans I and II - state the following:

"Wherefore we teach and declare that, by divine ordinance, the Roman Church possesses a pre-eminence of ordinary power over every other Church, and that this jurisdictional power of the Roman Pontiff is both episcopal and immediate. Both clergy and faithful, of whatever rite and dignity, both singly and collectively, are bound to submit to this power by the duty of hierarchical subordination and true obedience, and this not only in matters concerning faith and morals, but also in those which regard the discipline and government of the Church throughout the world." - Pastor Aeternus

"Religious submission of mind and will must be shown in a special way to the authentic magisterium of the Roman Pontiff, even when he is not speaking ex cathedra; that is, it must be shown in such a way that his supreme magisterium is acknowledged with reverence, the judgments made by him are sincerely adhered to, according to his manifest mind and will." - Lumen Gentium

The issue of divorce, remarriage, and communion is certainly one of faith, morals, and discipline, and Amoris Laetitia, while not ex cathedra, requires the reverential obedience of the Catholic faithful assuming that the above teachings are true.

When I was in the seminary we had a professor who repeatedly stressed to us that God gave us both faith and reason and that we could not rely on one to the exclusion of the other.  These issues have to be looked at not just with faith but with reason as well.  You mention logic - when you boil it all down - here are your only logical, reasonable options:

1. What the Catholic church teaches about the papacy is true and Francis is truly the pope.  However, what that means, as we are discovering, is that moral truth is not objective but subjective.  That's what Jesus meant in the passage in Matthew's gospel where he bestows the keys on Saint Peter, that what was once bound on earth can now be loosed.  Today, it's the definition of adultery, tomorrow it's homosexuality or abortion or who knows what, and a pope can contradict his predecessors and/or the teachings of councils because he holds the keys and has that power.

2. What the Catholic church teaches about the papacy is true but Francis is not really pope.  That will lead you to sedevacantism in some form - either the traditional "there hasn't been a real pope since Pius XII" version espoused by people like those on the website Novus Ordo Watch or the seemingly growing "resignationist" version where the resignation of Benedict XVI was invalid and therefore he's still pope and Francis is not.  To accept that you have to believe that the 99.99% of the world which thinks that Francis is pope is wrong and that includes Benedict himself who recognizes the reality of Francis' papacy.

3. Francis is pope, but what Catholicism teaches about the papacy is false which leads to Orthodoxy.

Some people are trying to construct for themselves a false middle ground.  The so-called "recognize and resist" option, popular among traditionalists that often leads its proponents to parishes run by traditional orders like the Fraternity of Saint Peter, or to the newly created Ordinariate, or to Eastern rite Catholic churches.  But a better, more reverent liturgy, is really just a placebo for such individuals, an effort to escape from reality rather than confront it.  All such groups are under the full authority of Pope Francis and in full communion with the church in Malta which, largely based on Amoris Laetitia, just approved communion for those divorced and civilly remarried Catholics who are "at peace" with the choices they have made, rejecting the explicit and "infallible" doctrine of the Catholic church.

Religion, like politics, involves A LOT of emotion, but I hope that you will be able to put some of that aside and prayerfully look at these matters with logic and reason.  A crisis of faith, although painful and traumatic, can be a great blessing in the end if it leads you to the truth.  May God bless you and guide you in your journey.
Excellent post. I'm a former SSPX going Catholic. Sedevacantism pretty much renders the Church non existent, unless you believe there will be some miraculous restoration of the papacy and bishops with Apostolic succession. The post V2 popes being real popes and the church being wrong on papal supremacy was the best option.
Amoris Laetitia came after I left. My problems were with the doctrinal contradictions between V2 and the previous teaching. For me the Catholic Church jumped the shark.

Offline Vanhyo

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #13 on: January 31, 2017, 04:05:53 AM »
Papal infallibility has to do with predestination and denial of free will.
 
Man is made in the image of God but after His likeness, RCs make it sound as if the Pope is not only the image but also the very likeness of God himself, whether the pope wants it or not, he has no choice, if he wants to say something from his chair, he will be automatically prevented from error...

Offline petros22

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #14 on: January 31, 2017, 11:03:54 AM »
Infallability would also seem to take away from the free will of the faithful. On CAF today I asked what happens if someone does not believe certain doctrines. This was the response

Quote
CCC 2089 Incredulity is the neglect of revealed truth or the willful refusal to assent to it. "Heresy is the obstinate post-baptismal denial of some truth which must be believed with divine and catholic faith, or it is likewise an obstinate doubt concerning the same; apostasy is the total repudiation of the Christian faith; schism is the refusal of submission to the Roman Pontiff or of communion with the members of the Church subject to him."
Almighty God, unto whom all hearts be open, all desires known, and from whom no secretes are hid: cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of thy holy spirit, that we may perfectly love thee, and worthily magnify thy holy name: through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Offline benjohn146

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #15 on: January 31, 2017, 01:13:46 PM »
Infallability would also seem to take away from the free will of the faithful. On CAF today I asked what happens if someone does not believe certain doctrines. This was the response

Quote
CCC 2089 Incredulity is the neglect of revealed truth or the willful refusal to assent to it. "Heresy is the obstinate post-baptismal denial of some truth which must be believed with divine and catholic faith, or it is likewise an obstinate doubt concerning the same; apostasy is the total repudiation of the Christian faith; schism is the refusal of submission to the Roman Pontiff or of communion with the members of the Church subject to him."

Ouch!!!! Not surprised though... This organization is run like a government or a law office. I think you just had the answer you were looking for in your search.  ;) And with the Anglican communion being the offspring of the RCC, I strongly suggest you look deeper into Orthodoxy. This forum will help you to answer your questions that will arise  :)
St Makarios, pray for us.

Offline J Michael

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #16 on: January 31, 2017, 03:47:43 PM »
Infallability would also seem to take away from the free will of the faithful. On CAF today I asked what happens if someone does not believe certain doctrines. This was the response

Quote
CCC 2089 Incredulity is the neglect of revealed truth or the willful refusal to assent to it. "Heresy is the obstinate post-baptismal denial of some truth which must be believed with divine and catholic faith, or it is likewise an obstinate doubt concerning the same; apostasy is the total repudiation of the Christian faith; schism is the refusal of submission to the Roman Pontiff or of communion with the members of the Church subject to him."

So...what happens if someone in the Orthodox Church does not or cannot believe certain doctrines?  Are they, too, not considered a heretic?  I wouldn't go so far, though others might, as saying they'd be an apostate as my understanding of apostasy has to do with, as the CCC says, "total repudiation of the Christian faith".  Now, if Orthodoxy alone is the Christian faith, then a repudiation of Orthodoxy or any of its doctrines could be construed as apostasy.  By the same token, if Roman Catholicism alone (as not a few Catholics, especially trads, would claim)  is the Christian faith, the same would apply, right?
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Offline Iconodule

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #17 on: January 31, 2017, 03:48:59 PM »
Infallability would also seem to take away from the free will of the faithful. On CAF today I asked what happens if someone does not believe certain doctrines. This was the response

Quote
CCC 2089 Incredulity is the neglect of revealed truth or the willful refusal to assent to it. "Heresy is the obstinate post-baptismal denial of some truth which must be believed with divine and catholic faith, or it is likewise an obstinate doubt concerning the same; apostasy is the total repudiation of the Christian faith; schism is the refusal of submission to the Roman Pontiff or of communion with the members of the Church subject to him."

I don't see how that has anything to do with free will.
Quote
“A goose to hatch the Crystal Egg after an Eagle had half-hatched it! Aye, aye, to be sure, that’s right,” said the Old Woman of Beare. “And now you must go find out what happened to it. Go now, and when you come back I will give you your name.”
- from The King of Ireland's Son, by Padraic Colum

Offline PJ26

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #18 on: January 31, 2017, 04:35:00 PM »
Who needs free will when you have Pope Francis...

"Whoever wishes to discover what Jesus wants from him, he must ask the Pope, this Pope, not the one who came before him, or the one who came before that. This present Pope." - Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta

http://www.ncregister.com/blog/edward-pentin/archbishop-scicluna-we-are-following-the-popes-directives

 :o

Offline petros22

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #19 on: January 31, 2017, 04:56:10 PM »
The idea that Jesus speaks through the Pope is frankly bizarre.
Almighty God, unto whom all hearts be open, all desires known, and from whom no secretes are hid: cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of thy holy spirit, that we may perfectly love thee, and worthily magnify thy holy name: through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Offline Vanhyo

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #20 on: January 31, 2017, 05:35:04 PM »
Quote
I don't see how that has anything to do with free will.
Papal infallibility is a form of predestination and predestination is denial of free will.
« Last Edit: January 31, 2017, 05:42:14 PM by Vanhyo »

Offline NicholasMyra

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #21 on: February 01, 2017, 02:22:20 AM »
Quote
I don't see how that has anything to do with free will.
Papal infallibility is a form of predestination and predestination is denial of free will.
Not seeing it
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Offline christiane777

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #22 on: February 06, 2017, 09:33:54 PM »
The idea that Jesus speaks through the Pope is frankly bizarre.

I agree that the idea that the Pope is the Vicar of Christ is a little bizarre.  I have a really hard time with Francis on this, but there have been a lot of really bad popes throughout history leading up to the Reformation (and after).  That said, there are a lot of really good men who have been Popes too.  Saints.  JP II.  I am a Catholic.  I have to come to privately view the role of Pope as head of the Church, not unlike the head of the Russian Orthodox Church (elder is it?  sorry) or any other branch of Orthodoxy or the head of the Southern Baptists or Lutherans, etc etc etc.  That I can handle.  An elder.  I do think Francis is a devout man of God.  I don't agree with his politics or where he so clearly wants to take the Church and his increasingly ruthless ways of taking it there.  But I think he is perhaps just not a good leader; he is limited by his South American Jesuit background, value and thought system (think Marxism/socialism); it is not that he is intentionally trying to do harm per se.  He wants his will implemented in the Church which he geniunely believes to be Christ's will.  I think his views are narrow; he doesn't see the threat of opening the Church up to increased secularism and subjectivity for what it is (I refer to AL).  He is in error here.  To not see this in this day and age is very bizarre.  He also has a little bit of a mean streak, snipes relentlessly at his fellow brethren.

There are so many good Catholics though at all levels of the Church.  And frankly the Orthodox Church feels really Eastern to me personally, foreign.  Though I have a lot of respect for it.  It has fallen to Orthodoxy to carry on the faith really with the RCC in crisis.  I pray you do so.  But we need true Christians to fight for the Latin Church as well.  Don't go gently into the good night.  Whether I am a good or bad Catholic I will leave to God, but I am a Catholic (and I don't honestly care a fig what Francis has to say about it).  I do wonder sometimes if I am judging him too harshly - I pray I am not.  It's sad.  You can't let your own faith and mercy get hurt by this.  We have to stay Christians committed to doctrine AND mercy, not degenerate into angry dogmatists.   Become what Francis says we are.  The best revenge is living well (i.e. in truth and love, both) - and saving the Church right from under his nose.   :)  This is where I stand on this anyway.
« Last Edit: February 06, 2017, 09:35:32 PM by christiane777 »
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Offline PJ26

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #23 on: February 06, 2017, 10:46:51 PM »
"I agree that the idea that the Pope is the Vicar of Christ is a little bizarre."

"I have to come to privately view the role of Pope as head of the Church, not unlike the head of the Russian Orthodox Church (elder is it?  sorry) or any other branch of Orthodoxy or the head of the Southern Baptists or Lutherans, etc etc etc.  That I can handle."

"Whether I am a good or bad Catholic I will leave to God, but I am a Catholic (and I don't honestly care a fig what Francis has to say about it)."

I don't wish to come off judgmental or harsh or anything - but by saying these things you aren't Catholic - it's not a case of good or bad - by definition you aren't Catholic.  The Catholic church itself says so.  Holding these beliefs puts you outside of the Catholic church.  I mean you can go through the motions, go to mass, identify yourself to others as being Catholic, whatever, but you're not.  Am I a Christian if I don't believe in the Trinity?  Am I a Muslim if I deny the teachings of Muhammad?  Does simply saying I am make it so?  You may want to read Pastor Aeternus.

Offline xOrthodox4Christx

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #24 on: February 07, 2017, 01:31:56 AM »
I agree with PJ26. To be a Catholic means to assent to all of the particulars of the doctrines and teachings of the Roman Church. Rome teaches the Pope is more than simply a visible "head" he is the representative of Christ on Earth, without him there is no visible Church in the world, and he claims infallible and supreme authority.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2017, 01:38:19 AM by xOrthodox4Christx »
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Offline Vanhyo

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #25 on: February 07, 2017, 03:28:14 AM »
I think bishops being vicars of Christ and speaking for him can be understood in an orthodox way. I don't know whether pop Francis is a true bishop though.

Offline PJ26

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #26 on: February 07, 2017, 09:23:16 AM »
Yes, but the validity of holy orders in the post-Vatican 2 or post-schism Catholic church is neither here nor there as far as the present discussion goes as is how one might interpret Catholic terms in an Orthodox way.  After all, there's a perfectly Orthodox way to understand the primacy of the Bishop of Rome.  What's at issue here is that the Catholic church says you MUST believe a, b, and c about the papacy if you're Catholic and if you don't you're anathematized and Christiane is saying that she rejects a, b, and c but still thinks she's Catholic.  Based on her post, she seems like a nice person who loves her faith, so this is probably just another case of a poorly catechized post-V2 Catholic rather than willful ignorance and obstinacy.  However, she has an obligation to know what her religion teaches and follow it. 
« Last Edit: February 07, 2017, 09:23:47 AM by PJ26 »

Offline Luka

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #27 on: February 07, 2017, 03:08:05 PM »
Papal infallibility is a form of predestination and predestination is denial of free will.
Why? The dogma of papal infallibility states that the Pope is infallible when speaking ex cathedra on matters of faith or morals. It is reasonable to think that when the Pope speaks on these matters, he wishes (an act of will) to speak truth. The dogma merely states that God effectively supports his free will with supernatural grace of infallibility.

Offline Vanhyo

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #28 on: February 08, 2017, 02:56:11 AM »
My comment was moved to another place, let me copy paste what I wrote earlier:


Quote
It is reasonable to think that when the Pope speaks on these matters, he wishes (an act of will) to speak truth.
How do you know what he wishes ? What if he is passionate about a false dogma and want to proclaim it from his chair ?
« Last Edit: February 08, 2017, 02:57:05 AM by Vanhyo »

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #29 on: February 08, 2017, 04:12:04 PM »
When I look at the exceptions some RC's  put to papal infability, I kinda think they're tautological. "The Pope is infallible, unless he's wrong."

For instance, Sedevacantists believe recent Popes weren't real Popes, since they spoke heresy. So they weren't infallible because they were wrong, but would they be infallible if they were right?

But I get many Traditionalists believe the heretic Popes never spoke according to the criteria of infallibility.
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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #30 on: February 08, 2017, 04:15:48 PM »
Yeah, when you really get into the details, I fail to see how Papal infallibility solves any of the problems it's supposed to solve or provides any of the reassurance it's supposed to provide.
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Offline Luka

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #31 on: February 08, 2017, 06:10:50 PM »
How do you know what he wishes ? What if he is passionate about a false dogma and want to proclaim it from his chair ?
The burden of proof rests on the one claiming that the Pope intentionally wishes to proclaim falsehood. Unless proven, we cannot ascribe to anyone bad intentions without being condemned ourselves.

Offline xOrthodox4Christx

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #32 on: February 08, 2017, 06:53:38 PM »
How do you know what he wishes ? What if he is passionate about a false dogma and want to proclaim it from his chair ?
The burden of proof rests on the one claiming that the Pope intentionally wishes to proclaim falsehood. Unless proven, we cannot ascribe to anyone bad intentions without being condemned ourselves.

I don't know why intentionality matters. If he proclaims a false dogma, intentionally or not, it's wrong.
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Offline Luka

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #33 on: February 09, 2017, 03:35:52 PM »
I don't know why intentionality matters. If he proclaims a false dogma, intentionally or not, it's wrong.
We were talking about whether papal infallibility entails a denial of free will. It does not, because the Catholic teaching assumes that the Pope is infallible when he wishes to declare something as truth. That's all.

Offline xOrthodox4Christx

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #34 on: February 09, 2017, 03:41:51 PM »
I don't know why intentionality matters. If he proclaims a false dogma, intentionally or not, it's wrong.
We were talking about whether papal infallibility entails a denial of free will. It does not, because the Catholic teaching assumes that the Pope is infallible when he wishes to declare something as truth. That's all.

Yeah, I don't see how it denies free will. It denies free will on the part of those who have to adhere to it, surely. But the Pope isn't infallible unless he speaks definitively on an issue of morals or faith. The Pope just saying something heretical in an off the cuff manner is not infallible in RC ecclesiology.
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Offline Luka

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #35 on: February 09, 2017, 04:32:53 PM »
Yeah, I don't see how it denies free will. It denies free will on the part of those who have to adhere to it, surely.
Why do you think so?
Quote
But the Pope isn't infallible unless he speaks definitively on an issue of morals or faith. The Pope just saying something heretical in an off the cuff manner is not infallible in RC ecclesiology.
Yes, of course.

Offline PJ26

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #36 on: February 09, 2017, 04:50:01 PM »
I don't think it denies the free will of its potential adherents because they are still free to reject it as far as their own personal will is concerned.  However, in rejecting it one would be rejecting two supposedly infallible teachings - both the infallible teaching regarding the pope's own charisma of infallibility along with the infallibility of whatever new dogma is proclaimed.  The Catholic who finds him or herself in disagreement with said teachings is free to either say - "well you're the pope so you must know what you're talking about so I'll go along with it even though I may not understand," and thereby remain Catholic or "no, that's crazy, pope or no, you're wrong," in which case they should really consider an alternative faith.

Offline Luka

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #37 on: February 10, 2017, 07:34:12 PM »
Well, in essence that's how Christianity works, isn't it? Either you accept the teaching of the Church or you need to find a different religion.

Offline PJ26

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #38 on: February 10, 2017, 10:00:37 PM »
In theory it should, but look at Christiane's post above.  I'm a convert to Orthodoxy so I can't speak to how well, in general, the average individual Orthodox knows and follows the tenets of the Faith.  However, I do know that the average post-V2 Catholic is extremely ignorant when it comes to the tenets of Catholicism and even when they do have more than a basic grasp of its teachings, they often don't care and choose not to follow them.  Cafeteria Catholicism is epidemic whether with liberals under popes JP2 and Benedict or now with traditionalists under pope Francis.  I couldn't square the circle despite my best efforts so I left Catholicism for Orthodoxy, but that's not the case with most Catholics unfortunately.

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #39 on: February 11, 2017, 06:19:22 AM »
Catholic returnee from Orthodoxy here. I know you asked for non-Catholic opinion here, and although I've stayed off this board partly because of Internet etiquette (I certainly wouldn't like someone preaching Orthodoxy on a Catholic board), the good of souls calls for a reply, then I'll go away again, maybe for good.

Divorce and remarriage is impossible. Even the Pope can't change that; his job is to defend our doctrine. (As I believe a former Catholic seminarian pointed out here, Amoris Laetitia isn't magisterial.) I'm not running away from reality by being Catholic; I'm betting the farm on reality.

So let me get this straight: you're upset because a churchman is proposing divorce and remarriage, so you're considering leaving the church for a faith that has long endorsed divorce and remarriage?

Don't leave the church.

By the way, I go to a Ukrainian Catholic parish once a month, still have an authentic Russian icon corner (icons from a deceased old Russian gentleman), say Byzantine Rite prayers in front of it daily (I know Slavonic and Russian), and wear a three-bar cross. Because the church says I can.

Go with God.
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Offline PJ26

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #40 on: February 11, 2017, 09:29:13 AM »
Amoris Laetitia is ABSOLUTELY magisterial unless you're in a state of total denial as many traditional and conservative Catholics are these days.  Now, it's not ex cathedra but Catholicism's teachings regarding the papacy require Catholics to obey it (please see my really long post above). 

Now, I'm not a fan of Orthodoxy's acceptance of divorce and remarriage.  It was the last hurdle I had to overcome before becoming Orthodox.  But I can understand how a marriage can fail and how under very specific circumstances the Orthodox Church will bless a second marriage.  If I have to compare that to what was already a complete joke of an annulment process within Catholicism, where one can conceivably receive an unlimited number of annulments, the reasons for which were expanded greatly under pope Francis' recent motu propio to include "etc." it's clear that the Orthodox way is by far the lesser evil. 

Getting back to Amoris Laetitia, what is at issue is that Catholicism is now sanctioning people who are divorced and CIVILLY remarried to receive communion.  These aren't just adulterers from a Catholic perspective, they are people having sexual relations outside of a sacramental marriage, both of which are mortal sins, who are being allowed to receive communion which when in a state of mortal sin is itself a mortal sin.  Like it or not, the only way Catholicism can square all of this is to do precisely what Orthodoxy is currently doing, bless a second sacramental marriage. 

Offline Luka

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #41 on: February 11, 2017, 09:32:13 AM »
In theory it should, but look at Christiane's post above.  I'm a convert to Orthodoxy so I can't speak to how well, in general, the average individual Orthodox knows and follows the tenets of the Faith.  However, I do know that the average post-V2 Catholic is extremely ignorant when it comes to the tenets of Catholicism and even when they do have more than a basic grasp of its teachings, they often don't care and choose not to follow them.  Cafeteria Catholicism is epidemic whether with liberals under popes JP2 and Benedict or now with traditionalists under pope Francis.  I couldn't square the circle despite my best efforts so I left Catholicism for Orthodoxy, but that's not the case with most Catholics unfortunately.
I wouldn't say that Christiane's view falls into the category of Cafeteria Catholicism. In fact it is closer to the tradition of the Roman Church than the more common attitudes held by Catholics nowadays. It is only with the recent decades that Catholics began to rely so strongly on EVERY opinion of the Pope (justifiably since recent bishops of Rome were in general intelligent, learned and well spoken Christians). With pope Francis, many Catholics have awaken to the darker side of this reliance and are simply returning to the tradition in which the Pope is not some kind of golden-mouthed guru, but merely a universal administrator of the Church and a passive (reactive) guardian of the Catholic tradition.

The ills brought upon the Catholic Church by the aftermath of the Second Vatican Council are well known, but I doubt that the ignorance of Catholics in regards to their faith is anything that couldn't be found among the average Orthodox in Orthodox lands. The problem is rather with the Catholic Church's tolerance for most incredible distortions of the faith. Well, I pray that they will finally find a way out of this.

BTW, I was also raised Catholic, although my way to the Orthodox Church was a bit more complicated than yours.

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #42 on: February 11, 2017, 09:40:09 AM »
I meant not ex cathedra. So I ignore it.

Catholicism doesn't commune the divorced and civilly remarried, which is adultery. It can't. Some bad churchmen do.

Quote
It was the last hurdle I had to overcome before becoming Orthodox.  But I can understand how a marriage can fail and how under very specific circumstances the Orthodox Church will bless a second marriage.

I used to make excuses because I wanted to leave the church too.
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Offline PJ26

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #43 on: February 11, 2017, 10:03:52 AM »
"Catholicism doesn't commune the divorced and civilly remarried"

Have you not read what's going on in Malta and Germany?  The bishops conferences of each have now begun to allow it.  Not some rogue priest or two, the bishops conferences of the two countries.  In Malta, it's a blanket permission for the divorced and civilly remarried to go to communion if they feel "at peace."  In Germany, the divorced and civilly remarried can go to communion with the OK of their pastor.  Both the bishops of Malta and Germany have specifically credited pope Francis and Amoris Laetitia for this change.  And has pope Francis come out to correct them?  Nope.  This is a change in Catholic teaching sanctioned by the pope to allow "adulterers" to receive communion.  I'm sorry, I really truly am sorry for you, if your love for your faith prevents you from seeing that, but denying the reality of a situation doesn't make it not so.

Offline NicholasMyra

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Re: Amoris Laetitia and My Crisis of Faith
« Reply #44 on: February 11, 2017, 12:20:19 PM »
Divorce and remarriage is impossible.
You give the pseudo scholastics of our day a bad name, they'd at least cite some incoherent essentialist-but-not argument when denying reality.
« Last Edit: February 11, 2017, 12:20:51 PM by NicholasMyra »
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