"You aim at a devout life, dear Philothea, because as a Christian you know that such devotion is most acceptable to God's Divine Majesty," says St. Francis de Sales in his book "Introduction to the Devout Life".
And we can all be Philotheas, as St. Francis notes: "I have made use of a name suitable to all who seek the devout life, Philothea meaning one who loves God."
week, two hard-hitting episodes of “The Vortex” addressed blunders of some members of the
Church hierarchy in their public statements on the issue of homosexuality. Both episodes are
embedded below; here’s a summary and some excerpts:
In the April
25th episode of “The Vortex”, Michael Voris recounts a recent
scandal involving Cardinal Pell:
…First, in a televised debate
on Australia’s leading national TV network, right in the middle of prime time a
couple of weeks ago, Sydney’s Cardinal Pell was debating arguably the world’s
most high profile atheist and biologist Richard Dawkins.
…Cardinal Pell stunned the
Catholic world here by saying that homosexual civil unions were acceptable.
…He began with a good defense
of the Church’s teaching on the sanctity of marriage but then seemed to be clearly
heading down the road of saying “BUT CIVIL UNIONS ARE WELL AND GOOD”.
points out that the Cardinal had been cut off by the moderator, and was unable
to complete his thoughts; still,
…to date, there has not been
any sort of clarification from the Cardinal’s office of what he meant or even
any recognition that what he said may have easily been misconstrued to mean
something other than what the Church teaches.
The Church has been quite clear
that whether the legal issue is so-called marriage OR civil unions, the MORAL
issue remains the same. Homosexual acts can never be approved of as a good
thing. And therefore any accommodation for them in law, be it marriage or civil
unions, is evil.
points out another instance of scandal:
Again, here in Australia,
Bishop Anthony Fisher of Parramatta just this past month published an article
written by the former general master of the Dominicans – a well-known dissident
– supporting homosexual civil unions. The bishop sent this article in his personal
newsletter to his clergy, causing a shockwave in his diocese among the faithful
he came to learn of it.
The letter itself extols
marriage, “sexual difference and its potential fertility”, and does mention
that homosexual marriage “is
impossible”. But then the author adds this statement (my emphasis):
This is not to denigrate
committed love of people of the same sex. This too should be cherished and supported, which is why
church leaders are slowly coming to
support same sex civil unions. The God of love can be present in every true
addition, Michael Voris mentions Archbishop Vincent Nichols’ recent statement
back-pedaling) which also endorsed homosexual “unions” as a matter of law, and
Cardinal Archbishop of Milan Carlo Martini’s book
which contains statements opposing the Church’s teaching on homosexuality.
These are not trivial errors, and as Voris says,
…[O]ne has to wonder: with big
name bishops and archbishops and cardinals around the world being so vague,
ambiguous, and apparently double-speaking on the issue, what the heck is going
There appears to be an open
disobedience on the part of members of the hierarchy towards what is crystal
clear teaching that is established and restated by the magisterium. This is
causing no end of upset and pain for the faithful. It calls into doubt in their
minds the truths of the faith. If they are told to obey this and obey that – but
members of the hierarchy are free to not only doubt or disagree with the
Church’s teachings, but moreover, disagree or use squishy language in such an
open and public fashion like Prime Time TV shows, authoring books, and issuing
statements and reprinting articles – the faithful rightfully wonder, where does
that leave them.
…It’s discouraging enough trying
to evangelize the world, but when the efforts are submarined by leaders, it
doesn’t exactly paint a picture of a glorious renewal of the faith anytime
soon. Why Church leaders don’t seem to understand this is a great source of pain
and confusion on the part of the sheep.
the 2003 Vatican document on legalization of homosexual unions here.]
second “Vortex” on homosexuality (April 26), Voris stands in front of St.
Joseph’s Catholic Church, where, he tells us
St. Joseph's Church, Sydney
Since 1972 every Friday night
at 8pm, a Mass has been going on here celebrating not the sacrifice and
re-presentation of Our Blessed Lord to the Father for the redemption of the
world and the forgiveness of sins, but rather, the celebration of
Forty years. Forty long and
miserable years; untouched, unchallenged, permitted…
It is popularly known by those
who would have a concern that these “masses” are held each week. And that
includes the Archdiocese of Sydney. The masses are said by a mix of priests
from both the archdiocese as well as a smattering of various religious orders, most
prominent of which is Missionaries of the Sacred Heart…
…[T]his blasphemy has been allowed
to continue for so long, that an entire culture has grown up here: a “gay”
Catholic culture. The New Town Gay Catholics promote a Gay Rosary, riddled with
Among their mysteries: a
celebration of what they say are the gay partnerships of King David and
Jonathon; Ruth and Naomi; and most disgusting and offensive of all, Our Lord
and Lazarus. There is also a decade dedicated to meditating on the blessings of
being homosexual as shown in the gospel account of Our Blessed Lord
encountering the two disciples on the Road to Emmaus.
describing such atrocities in several different countries, and noting that the
US has its own share of this kind of blasphemy, Michael Voris notes:
As one blogger recently put it,
there is no way the Church can expect to be taken legitimately in its teachings,
as long as its leaders allow this kind of activity to continue.
Two things that faithful
Catholics can do about these sorts of scandals: first, make reparation by
offering sacrifice for the sins of others. Remember that the supreme maxim of
Christianity is that the innocent pay for the guilty.
The second thing we can do is
spread the news of a fantastic group called COURAGE, an approved apostolate for
Catholics who struggle with same sex attraction…
And make sure we continue to
pray for our leaders.