Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Authority of the Church

In a recent post from Alan/Rhology on Beggars All, he said:

>> sw: So you're confirming (again) that your local
>> church is acting like a "little magisterium" again.
>
> AR: Well, I'd agree that in this case it was a little
> magisterium
,


sw: Thank you.

> AR: except my church actually practices biblical excommunication.
> When was the last time yours did?


sw: All the time. Some excommunications are automatic, like if one
participates in or assists in procuring an abortion, the excommunication
is automatic.

> AR: And of course, I'm not claiming Rome is totally wrong in
> EVERYthing, so in this case my church and yours coincide.

sw: So you twice concede that your church acts as it's own
"little magisterium" and then next you say...

> AR: (That) Doesn't make my church a little magisterium.

sw: Wait! You just said TWICE that it DID!

>> sw: So, in YOUR concept of "church" it happens at YOUR
>> church, but not in other churches, like MY church. I see.
>> How consistent is that?

>
> AR: This makes no sense. It happens in mine. It happens
> rarely if ever in yours. How is that a question of consistency
> on my part?


sw: Well, 1) "I'd agree that in this case it was a little magisterium."
Then 2) "...so in this case my church and yours coincide."
Then 3) "(That) doesn't make my church a little magisterium.
Then 4) "It happens in mine... rarely if ever in yours..." (but you
concede it does happen, even if you don't realize how often).
You're bouncing all over this one! Perhaps you want to take
back some of what you said so that you can be consistent?

>> sw: The authority was clearly given to the Apostles in
>> Matthew 18, and that authority lies with their successors.

>
> AR: Where does Matt 18 say that about their successors?


sw: This has been documented many, many times, but I will
do so again. First off, NO passage from Scripture is to be
read in a vacuum from the REST of Scripture! Matthew 18
does not mention succession, however succession IS part of
Scripture - and undeniably so.

sw: To begin with, Jesus said: "18"As (A)You sent Me into
the world, (B)I also have sent them into the world."
John 17:18
. So, as the Father sent Jesus, He sent His
Apostles. Jesus selected bishops - and thus, so should
they and so DID they.

sw: In Acts 1:20-23 we see the successor to Judas' bishoprick
selected. Some non-Catholics try to say, "but Judas' successor
had to be a witness to the ministry of Jesus," and they cite
verse 21 as their prooftext, which is fine and good. For THIS
successor they wanted one with those qualifications, but
Matthias is NOT the only other one called an Apostle in the
New Testament! St. Paul was not with them throughout Jesus'
ministry, in fact he persecuted the early Catholics! Barnabas
is also called an Apostle (Acts 14:14) as well as Apollos being
included in "us apostles" (1 Cor. 4:6-9) and within that same
context St. Paul "sends out" (literal meaning of "apostle") St.
Timothy in the same way he himself was sent out to teach
(see verse 17). Therefore this imagined condition being put
upon all who would be called "apostle" or "bishop" is simply
ludicrous.

sw: In short, apostolic succession is not an invention of the
Catholic Church, it is quite scripturally sound and scripturally
based. So again we must urge those reading this whose
"teachers" or "leaders" or "elders" are not in valid succession
to the Apostles - flee from them!


In another thread on the same blog, Edward said:

> Ed: Their (Catholics) argument is based on the authority
> of the Majesterium, it becomes an existential problem as
> to whether or not they even have the right authority
> without severely begging the question. Unless they can
> find some irrefutable epistemological formula to prove
> the pope et al. are the true church, they are left with
> that bugaboo, "private interpretation" to determine which
> authority to follow. Thus they are no better than the
> prots, despite the protestations of the RCs.


sw: We see the old, "they're no better than us" argument, as
if that were a valid argument. It's not! If we're both wrong
about this - then we both go to hell! The fact of the matter
though is based in the Scriptures I quoted to Alan above.
There truly IS valid apostolic succession in THE Church which
Jesus Christ built. Outside of communion with that succession
you are following impostors who are there to "fool, even the
elect" and/or have been fooled themselves into believing they
are on the right path. However, if apostolic succession is
real, and I believe I've made a pretty good foundational case
for that, then we must reject any who are not part of that
succession and/or in communion with that succession. These
other teachers/elders are preaching a "different gospel" and
should be avoided at all cost. Even if it means going against
family and friends - you must follow the Truth.

> Ed continues: Also, once they start arguing over history,
> what the Scriptures or the Fathers say about the pope,
> they are behaving just like those "chaotic" prots who
> supposedly lean on their own understanding. They are, in
> so borrow a phrase, starting with orthodoxy and
> establishing authority. If their interlocutor is a prot, they
> just keep waving the authority card in his face because
> they can say their church is the real deal (which I do not
> believe, of course) because it is "older", but when the
> opponent is EO (Eastern Orthodox), their situation is
> different because they make similar claims based on
> similar arguments, but the EOs have a different outcome.
>
> Just watch a discussion between an EO and RC about
> e.g. papal infallibility or divine simplicity vs. essence/energies,
> and you will see that when they cannot just wave the
> authority card to stop discussion, they have a hard slog
> justifying their beliefs on purely rational grounds.


sw: Well, for one thing when the discussion is with someone
from Eastern Orthodoxy, yes - the discussion IS different
because they too have valid apostolic succession. What
they lack is communion with the See of Peter. You are
not from Eastern Orthodoxy, so I'll save that discussion
for one who is (and I am in a paused debate at the time
of this writing with someone from Orthodoxy). The point
is, what we may say to Orthodoxy is different from what
we'd say to Protestants - that's a given - but the position
of Protestantism is EVEN LESS than that of Orthodoxy, so this line of argument does not help Edward's cause. I am
also in a private discussion currently with a friend of mine
who is seriously considering the move to Orthodoxy, I
only bring this up to let you know, I am quite familiar with
dealing with discussions and apologetics with Orthodoxy.
I may share some of those discussions on my blog after
making anonymous my friend's name, or at least my
responses to him. But back to the point, you're not of
the Orthodox persuasion, so to throw that into the mix
at this point is nothing short of a distraction tactic. As
I deal with you, I will be dealing with a Protestant and
will draw upon my own experiences and insights from
when I too was a Protestant. THIS discussion is about
authority and distinguishing the differences between
Catholic and Protestant authority - let's stick to that,
shall we? That being said, you appear to be conceding
the Catholic position to a point when you say we wave
the authority card because we're older. That argument
does indeed have merit, but it is not our only argument.

> Ed continues: I think this is usually a problem with

> arguments from authority--unless everyone accepts
> the authority they are pretty useless. Hence the
> constant skirmishing with RCs stating that prots are
> bound by "private interpretation" while they are only
> following a God-ordained authority. Well, what if it
> isn;t a God-ordained authority, and what if there are
> other choices we can base om the same criteria?

sw: Well, therein lies your burden of proof! Prove to us that God didn't ordain the first Catholic bishops and then they, through the Holy Ghost, ordained the succession of bishops throughout history to this day. There are other points for me to raise, but for now this one should suffice.

>> Ed concludes: If they were consistent, they would say
>> that there is chaos among those who claim an infallible
>> authority.

sw: First off, don't you claim to cling to an infallible authority?

sw: Second, the "you're as bad as we are" argument is not a valid one.

"EA" wrote:
> Lay Catholics (as well as others) are divided over

> issues like abortion, where is the INFALLIBLE teaching
> on that? There are encyclicals and various other
> writings from individual theologians which are not
> infallible, but there is no ex cathedra teaching on it,
> yet there is controversy on an issue of faith and morals.

sw: Let me just say, there's not an infallible ruling on absolutely every matter of faith and morals. As legalistic as the Catholic Church can be at times, to make such a ruling on absolutely everything which touches upon faith and morals would become so cumbersome and overwhelming. No, such rulings come about when the Church deems it is absolutely necessary. If there are ordinances in place which already cover the ground, then there the need for an infallible ruling is diminished.
sw: In the specific case of abortion, mentioned above, Canon Law is quite clear and specific on the matter, Can. 1398 "A person who procures a completed abortion incurs a latae sententiae excommunication." By "latae sententiae" that means it is automatic. There is no "debate" on this! If you procure (or even particiapate in) an abortion, you are excommunicated and must be reconciled to the God through the means provided by Him in His Church - there's no way around this! Sure one MAY argue, but Canon Law remains in force and once a person has procured an abortion, they are not in communion with the Church and sin even greater if they ignore this fact and continue on without proper reconciliation, as if this great chasm of faith has not occurred in their life.

In JMJ,

Scott<<<


45 comments:

  1. That abortion is an immoral act is an infallible teaching of the Church. Moreover it is contrary to the Natural Law and Ten Commandments. I'm not sure why anyone would still attempt to argue this matter.

    Below is some more relevant material which might be helpful to those who are still confused.

    Pope John Paul II, Evangelium Vitae, n. 57: “Therefore, by the authority which Christ conferred upon Peter and his Successors, and in communion with the Bishops of the Catholic Church, I confirm that the direct and voluntary killing of an innocent human being is always gravely immoral. This doctrine, based upon that unwritten law which man, in the light of reason, finds in his own heart (cf. Rom 2:14-15), is reaffirmed by Sacred Scripture, transmitted by the Tradition of the Church and taught by the ordinary and universal Magisterium.”

    Lumen Gentium 25: "...Although the individual bishops do not enjoy the prerogative of infallibility, they nevertheless proclaim Christ's doctrine infallibly whenever, even though dispersed through the world, but still maintaining the bond of communion among themselves and with the successor of Peter, and authentically teaching matters of faith and morals, they are in agreement on one position as definitively to be held.(40*) This is even more clearly verified when, gathered together in an ecumenical council, they are teachers and judges of faith and morals for the universal Church, whose definitions must be adhered to with the submission of faith.(41*)

    "And this infallibility with which the Divine Redeemer willed His Church to be endowed in defining doctrine of faith and morals, extends as far as the deposit of Revelation extends, which must be religiously guarded and faithfully expounded. And this is the infallibility which the Roman Pontiff, the head of the college of bishops, enjoys in virtue of his office, when, as the supreme shepherd and teacher of all the faithful, who confirms his brethren in their faith,(166) by a definitive act he proclaims a doctrine of faith or morals.(42*) And therefore his definitions, of themselves, and not from the consent of the Church, are justly styled irreformable, since they are pronounced with the assistance of the Holy Spirit, promised to him in blessed Peter, and therefore they need no approval of others, nor do they allow an appeal to any other judgment. For then the Roman Pontiff is not pronouncing judgment as a private person, but as the supreme teacher of the universal Church, in whom the charism of infallibility of the Church itself is individually present, he is expounding or defending a doctrine of Catholic faith.(43*) The infallibility promised to the Church resides also in the body of Bishops, when that body exercises the supreme magisterium with the successor of Peter. To these definitions the assent of the Church can never be wanting, on account of the activity of that same Holy Spirit, by which the whole flock of Christ is preserved and progresses in unity of faith.(44*)

    "But when either the Roman Pontiff or the Body of Bishops together with him defines a judgment, they pronounce it in accordance with Revelation itself, which all are obliged to abide by and be in conformity with, that is, the Revelation which as written or orally handed down is transmitted in its entirety through the legitimate succession of bishops and especially in care of the Roman Pontiff himself, and which under the guiding light of the Spirit of truth is religiously preserved and faithfully expounded in the Church.(45*) The Roman Pontiff and the bishops, in view of their office and the importance of the matter, by fitting means diligently strive to inquire properly into that revelation and to give apt expression to its contents;(46*) but a new public revelation they do not accept as pertaining to the divine deposit of faith.(47*)"

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  2. Can. 749 §1. By virtue of his office, the Supreme Pontiff possesses infallibility in teaching when as the supreme pastor and teacher of all the Christian faithful, who strengthens his brothers and sisters in the faith, he proclaims by definitive act that a doctrine of faith or morals is to be held.



    §2. The college of bishops also possesses infallibility in teaching when the bishops gathered together in an ecumenical council exercise the magisterium as teachers and judges of faith and morals who declare for the universal Church that a doctrine of faith or morals is to be held definitively; or when dispersed throughout the world but preserving the bond of communion among themselves and with the successor of Peter and teaching authentically together with the Roman Pontiff matters of faith or morals, they agree that a particular proposition is to be held definitively.



    §3. No doctrine is understood as defined infallibly unless this is manifestly evident.



    Can. 750 §1. A person must believe with divine and Catholic faith all those things contained in the word of God, written or handed on, that is, in the one deposit of faith entrusted to the Church, and at the same time proposed as divinely revealed either by the solemn magisterium of the Church or by its ordinary and universal magisterium which is manifested by the common adherence of the Christian faithful under the leadership of the sacred magisterium; therefore all are bound to avoid any doctrines whatsoever contrary to them.



    §2. Each and every thing which is proposed definitively by the magisterium of the Church concerning the doctrine of faith and morals, that is, each and every thing which is required to safeguard reverently and to expound faithfully the same deposit of faith, is also to be firm-ly embraced and retained; therefore, one who rejects those propositions which are to be held definitively is opposed to the doctrine of the Catholic Church.



    Can. 751 Heresy is the obstinate denial or obstinate doubt after the reception of baptism of some truth which is to be believed by divine and Catholic faith; apostasy is the total repudiation of the Christian faith; schism is the refusal of submission to the Supreme Pontiff or of communion with the members of the Church subject to him.

    Can. 915 Those who have been excommunicated or interdicted after the imposition or declaration of the penalty and others obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to holy communion.


    Can. 1364 §1. Without prejudice to the prescript of ⇒ can. 194, §1, n. 2, an apostate from the faith, a heretic, or a schismatic incurs a latae sententiae excommunication; in addition, a cleric can be punished with the penalties mentioned in ⇒ can. 1336, §1, nn. 1, 2, and 3.

    §2. If contumacy of long duration or the gravity of scandal demands it, other penalties can be added, including dismissal from the clerical state.


    Can. 1398 A person who procures a completed abortion incurs a latae sententiae excommunication.

    2272 Formal cooperation in an abortion constitutes a grave offense. The Church attaches the canonical penalty of excommunication to this crime against human life. "A person who procures a completed abortion incurs excommunication latae sententiae,"76 "by the very commission of the offense,"77 and subject to the conditions provided by Canon Law.78 The Church does not thereby intend to restrict the scope of mercy. Rather, she makes clear the gravity of the crime committed, the irreparable harm done to the innocent who is put to death, as well as to the parents and the whole of society. CCC

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  3. Hi Alex, thank you for providing more references. What I find a bit interesting is the fact that this has been posted for a little while now, and not one of our interlocutors from BA have commented on either my post or your comments.

    In JMJ,
    Scott<<<
    Catholic Debate Forum

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  4. Thanks for the post.
    Unfortunately, there's not really anythg in there on which I want to comment, with one exception, b/c your arguments don't begin to overturn mine. I'm sure you disagree; let the reader judge.

    The one thing is what I'd been focusing on over at BeggarsAll - Pelosi.

    If you procure (or even particiapate in) an abortion, you are excommunicated and must be reconciled to the God through the means provided by Him in His Church - there's no way around this!

    The way around it is that you don't get one yourself, you just become a powerful gov't official and spend half your time making sure abortion can't be made illegal. Then you take the Eucharist whenever you feel like it, even at a Papal Mass.

    I'd like to know why Pelosi isn't excomm'd. If she'd been at one time in MY church, she'd've been excomm'd a LONG time ago.

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  5. This whole excommunication argument may need a separate article, Scott. Apparently, at least one interlocuter does not understand what 'excommunication' means in the Church. One who sins gravely (mortally) excommunicates THEMSELVES.

    Pelosi, if she has not made her penance properly, and still acts against the Laws of God and the teaching of the Church has ALREADY excommunicated herself if she still receives the Eucharist. As Paul said (paraphrasing), "One who receives the Body and Blood of Christ is guilty of the Body and Blood and condemns themselves."

    It is the same lame argument against the validity of Christ's Church that someone made on another site. The leader of his country was a Catholic and, in his opinion, "evil." He made no specific charges, of course, but only blamed the Church for this leader's "evil." He said he believes in personal responsibility, except when it comes to his 'Catholic' leader's actions. If that leader is truly evil, then he is ALREADY excommunicated. Every person, whether the head of a country or the head of only themselves, is responsible for his own actions and his own soul.

    The Church does not have public trials, or public excommunication announcements. However, if a priest or bishop knowingly allows someone who can cause scandal in the Church to recieve the Eucharist unworthily, they too are guilty. I, as a member of the Church, am not in any position to make that determination. I may have my opinion, but it is just my opinion. My job is to take care of my own soul and protect my children from such scandal.

    God knows the heart and God will be the judge. As for His Church...can you imagine what would happen to the already tarnished reputation of His Church if She were to go around setting up tribunals, lists, announcements, or whatever, on who was and who was not excommunicated? Cries of "The new inquisition!" is what I can imagine (especially from people who have absolutely NO clue about the historical, medieval inquisition). I mean, really, look at this with SOME kind of objectivity, please (speaking to your interlocutors, Scott, not you, of course.)

    Anyway, perhaps, a little explanation on what 'excommunication' means. Obviously it is yet another Catholic term now being used by non-Catholics with a different nuance of meaning attached to it.

    AMDG

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  6. Oops.
    I paraphrased Paul thus:
    As Paul said (paraphrasing), "One who receives the Body and Blood of Christ is guilty of the Body and Blood and condemns themselves."

    I meant to paraphrase him this way:
    "One who receives the Body and Blood of Christ UNWORTHILY is guilty of the Body and Blood and condemns themselves."

    Thanks. +JMJ+

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  7. cathmom,

    That's true. However, excomm is a separate and also commanded exercise, instituted by the Lord Jesus Himself.
    I'm not trying to make excomm into some big bugaboo; I am using it exactly as I would use the more familiar (to Protestant ears) term "church discipline". Why doesn't the Roman church practice it with ppl like Pelosi?

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  8. I blogged on the topic of excommunication back in July of this year.

    http://cathapol.blogspot.com/2009/07/anathema-defined.html

    The overall point of this thread, however, is authority in general. The subject of excommunication is one aspect or tool of the authority of the Church.

    As for someone like Speaker of the House, Pelosi, well - we don't know what has gone on between her and her confessor. As cathmom5 points out, if she receives the Body of Christ unworthily, then she is guilty of the Body of Christ. We should avoid trying to make personal judgments here, leave that to God. Speaker Pelosi knows her own heart, she'll have no excuse when she stands before the Judgment Seat - she's obviously not fooling anyone but herself if her soul is not right before God and when it comes time to receiving the Sacraments.

    In JMJ,
    Scott<<<

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  9. Sloughing off the responsibility of the church to "I don't know what's gone on between her and her confessor" and "she's accruing condemnation to herself" is not sufficient.
    1) Like you said, you don't know what she's confessing. By all appearances and all actions, she thinks it's perfectly OK to keep baby murder legal.
    2) The NT makes provision for one accruing condemnation unto oneself AND ALSO for church discipline in public. My church would ask her to repent of her pro-baby-murder stance, privately. If she refused, two or three would ask her. If she refused, we would notify the entire church and the entire church would ask her to repent. If she refused, we'd put her out of the church.

    We do that and we're some schismatic ungodly group. Why doesn't the infallible church do that? Especially when it makes so much noise about calling abortion a mortal sin and all that?

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  10. Alan,
    All I can say is that if I were Speaker Pelosi's bishop, I'd probably do things differently. I'm not her bishop and this is his responsibility, not mine. It is scandalous - I wholeheartedly agree with you on that, but this is NOT a matter of infallibility so to try and bring that up under this topic is diversionary. As I said, I really agree with you on this particular matter and I wish her bishop would take a firm and public stance with her especially in light of her public stance.

    The REAL topic here is the overall authority of the Church, not the authority of individual bishops over individual sheep in their flock.

    The REAL matter of discussion is the FACT that Jesus Christ established the office of the bishoprick and that office continues to this day in valid apostolic succession. I understand why you wish to avoid this topic - it is one you cannot win and one which utterly destroys Protestant authority.

    Now, is valid apostolic authority a guarantee that every bishop will do the right thing in every situation? No, it is not. What it IS is the valid passing down of authority from Jesus Christ to and through His Church. If some do not USE that authority and/or if some abuse that authority does not diminish the FACT that this authority was indeed given and passed down from generation to generation, from the Apostles to our current bishops.

    In JMJ,
    Scott<<<

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  11. Alan responded on Beggars All:
    Scott Windsor sets himself over a bishop of the RCC:
    All I can say is that if I were Speaker Pelosi's bishop, I'd probably do things differently. I'm not her bishop and this is his responsibility, not mine. It is scandalous - I wholeheartedly agree with you on that, but this is NOT a matter of infallibility so to try and bring that up under this topic is diversionary. As I said, I really agree with you on this particular matter and I wish her bishop would take a firm and public stance with her especially in light of her public stance.

    Fair enough, you're not her bishop, but it doesn't stop there.
    1) Where do you get off criticising a member of the Roman clergy? You're a layman, aren't you? What authority do you have to correct someone who works directly for the Magisterium?
    2) You're conceding that your church doesn't do what it should in terms of enforcement of its doctrine. Doesn't that put its actual commitment to that doctrine in serious question? Isn't this "faith" w/o works?

    The REAL topic here is the overall authority of the Church, not the authority of individual bishops over individual sheep in their flock.

    And the overall church hasn't done anythg to remedy this situation, despite its high profile.
    What should an outside observer thus conclude? It's pretty obvious - for all her high-sounding talk about abortion, when it comes to ppl in power, she fears human power and the criticism of men rather than God.

    Now, is valid apostolic authority a guarantee that every bishop will do the right thing in every situation? No, it is not.

    Is it closer to a guarantee that SOMEONE in the church will eventually do the right thing, given hundreds of chances over the course of decades?
    Is it closer to a guarantee that the Pope himself, the Vicar of Christ on Earth, wouldn't go ahead and allow the Eucharist to be served to Pelosi at a Mass he attends?
    If it doesn't mean that, what does it mean in real life? You can SAY they have that authority, but if they never use it, you don't really know, do you? It's just as if they didn't have it. And that's been one of the major points in our discussion. You say the Magisterium is infallible and all that, but they won't infallibly tell you what they've infallibly taught. For that matter, they won't UNOFFICIALLY tell you what they've infallibly defined.
    You say the Magisterium has authority to bind and to loose, yet when faced with the awesome power (not to mention the nearly unlimited rhetorical and analytical skills) of the weak-minded and big-mouthed Speaker of the House, who is clearly in serious sin even according to lax Roman standards, the Magisterium does...nothing. If it does nothing, it's the exact same as if it can do nothing. It's nothing.

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  12. Alan,
    Your apologetics is a joke. You rip a statement from the context it was written and then portray it as if I were putting myself above a Catholic bishop, when I really did quite the opposite! I said IF I were Pelosi's bishop I probably do things differently - then I acknowledged that I am not her bishop. I also expressed a wish that HE would do something more public in light of Pelosi's public actions - and what I might WISH for him cannot be construed as putting myself above him.

    Next you express an ignorance of the rights and even responsibilities of Catholic laity to offer concerns and even correction to their superiors:
    The Christian faithful are free to make known to the pastors of the Church their needs, especially spiritual ones, and their desires.
    [Code of Canon Law, Canon 212, §2]

    According to the knowledge, competence, and prestige which they possess, they have the right and even at times the duty to manifest to the sacred pastors their opinion on matters which pertain to the good of the Church and to make their opinion known to the rest of the Christian faithful [...]
    [Code of Canon Law, Canon 212, §3]

    St. Thomas Aquinas wrote:
    as the gloss of Augustine says on Galatians 2:11, "Peter gave an example to superiors, that if at any time they should happen to stray from the straight path, they should not disdain to be reproved by their subjects."
    [Summa Theologica]

    In your second question you assert that "the Church" does not do what you say it "should do" in regard to doctrine and ask if that doesn't put the actual commitment to the doctrine in serious question. I answer you that just because a single bishop or even many bishops may not do what they should do does not make the Church itself in error. In St. Athanasius' day nearly all the bishops defected to Arianism - and yet when he stood virtually alone, the Church itself was not in error, though many of her bishops were.

    You then ask, "Isn't this faith w/o works?" If there is something lacking here in not doing this one act, this does not make the faith wholly void of works. Your argument, if you're trying to make one, fails on that point.

    So, you don't understand Catholicism, and you attack it (you don't know that it is permissible to correct others, even ones superiors if it is done in the desire to better them). You challenge how Speaker Pelosi's bishop handles her - yet you do not know how he's handling her, you just speculate that he's doing nothing. You base your statements on arguments from silence. Basically a lot of whining about something you evidently know little about.

    In JMJ,
    Scott<<<

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  13. Actually, I DO know sthg about how her bishop has dealt with her. She's not excomm'd, simple as that. The fact that you can cite Canon Law to make an excuse for the RCC's terrible laziness and laxity in disciplining her (and it's not as if she's the only one) shows that your own church can't keep track of what it's said before.

    Your continual stalling of the question why Pelosi hasn't been excomm'd for her obvious refusal to follow Roman dogma is very, very telling. Thanks for your interaction.

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  14. Hello Rhology,

    Perhaps the reason that Pelosi has not been excommunicated is because she has not done anything that warrant that penalty yet. Here is the opinion of a real canon lawyer on the matter: http://www.canonlaw.info/2008/11/canonical-options-for-dealing-with.html .

    I reiterate what I said over on your blog, the imposition of a penalty that is not excommunication is a matter that is between the bishop and the individual and is imposed privately. Thus, you do not know if a penalty has not been imposed on Speaker Pelosi. The only thing you can argue is that she has not been excommunicated, but again, you do not know this for a fact, all you can really say is that the imposition of the penalty of excommunication has not been meted out YET. While it is possible that no proceedings have yet commenced against her, it is also possible that they have and that they are somewhere in the process.

    God bless!

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  15. Alan writes:
    Your continual stalling of the question why Pelosi hasn't been excomm'd for her obvious refusal to follow Roman dogma is very, very telling. Thanks for your interaction.

    Alan, which "dogma" has Pelosi refused to follow? (I suspect we're about to reveal some more ignorance, or Alan will go silent).

    In JMJ,
    Scott<<<

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  16. that Pelosi hasn't been excomm'd for her obvious refusal to follow Roman dogma is very, very telling.

    The acceptability of abortion. I thought I'd made that pretty clear from the beginning. And the acceptability of homosexuality, too. The claim that the RCC follows the teaching of the NT, since the NT clearly informs us that we are to judge those who profess to be believers and yet are not really, which is why I've so far mentioned at least twice the fact that MY church would have long ago excomm'd her if she'd refused to repent. You remain strangely silent on that issue. One can only wonder why.

    Paul Hoffer,

    Yet? How long has she been in public office? That is simply an impossible excuse; try another one.

    And Happy Thanksgiving. I'm thankful during these holidays for poor responses to arguments on these issues, since there was a time I was tempted to join a "more ancient" church.

    Peace,
    Rhology

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  17. >> AR: that Pelosi hasn't been
    >> excomm'd for her obvious
    >> refusal to follow Roman dogma
    >> is very, very telling.
    >
    > AR: The acceptability of
    > abortion. I thought I'd made
    > that pretty clear from the
    > beginning.

    sw: "Accepting" abortion and actually procuring one are two different issues. Yes, the Catholic hierarchy has spoken out that Catholic politicians SHOULD oppose abortion - but that does not elevate this to a matter of dogma. You misunderstand and thereby misrepresent the Catholic Church in this matter. We've been trying to tell you this "from the beginning" but you seem like you don't want to hear anything which conflicts with your presuppositional view of Catholicism.

    > AR: And the acceptability of
    > homosexuality, too.

    sw: Again, "accepting" homosexuals as fellow sinners is not contrary to Catholic teaching and this is based in Scripture too. Participating in homosexual acts, now that would be a different story. So far as I know Speaker Pelosi is not a homosexual so what are you charging her with here?

    sw: In the United States there is freedom of religion. Neither Catholics nor Protestants have a "right" to legislate their religious views. Sadly, in the USA homosexual behavior, in most jurisdictions, is not illegal behavior. For someone who does not share the moral convictions of a faithful Catholic or a fundamentalist Protestant there is an argument for the Constitutional position of the hedonist homosexual.

    > AR continues: The claim that the
    > RCC follows the teaching of the
    > NT, since the NT clearly informs
    > us that we are to judge those
    > who profess to be believers and
    > yet are not really, which is why
    > I've so far mentioned at least
    > twice the fact that MY church
    > would have long ago excomm'd her
    > if she'd refused to repent.

    sw: What evidence do you have that she's refused to repent of an actual sin? Keep in mind, though I think we'd ALL like to see ALL Christians take a firm stance against abortion - which we all see as murder - that lack of action whereas it may be weakness in his/her personal faith, is not a sin of commission. So long as abortion remains "legal" in the United States, what precisely do you expect the Speaker of the House to do? It is her political duty to uphold the Law of the United States.

    > AR: You remain strangely silent
    > on that issue. One can only
    > wonder why.

    sw: You claim I remain strangely silent, yet you published a blog based upon my non-silence on BA! So which is it, Alan? Am I silent, or have I spoken that I would likely do things differently if I were Speaker Pelosi's bishop?

    sw: I hope you understand that I cannot speak with absolute certainty for the specific reason that I am NOT her bishop! I don't know what he's already said to her - and I venture to guess, neither do you.

    > AR concludes: And Happy
    > Thanksgiving. I'm thankful
    > during these holidays for poor
    > responses to arguments on these
    > issues, since there was a time I
    > was tempted to join a "more
    > ancient" church.

    sw: I hope your holiday was enjoyable. I am thankful for family and friends with whom I was able to share the holiday with. I am also thankful for the opportunity to share with you the REAL teaching of the Catholic Church as opposed to the invented things you keep coming up with (namely in this case that a politicians stance on abortion and homosexuality, without actually participating in either, is a matter of Catholic dogma).

    sw: The Catholic Church's position on abortion has remained unchanged since the very beginning of the Church. You can read details here.

    In JMJ,
    Scott<<<

    ReplyDelete
  18. sw: Question for Alan: When does the moral conviction of any professing Christian take precedence over the legislative responsibilities of one who represents both Christians and non-Christians? Morally on this issue I believe you and I are in agreement - however "legally" speaking we are not. Now, if the law of the land were to change, THEN you have a case. Until such time, a politician who may not take as firm a stance as you or I would prefer has not necessarily rejected a dogmatic decree nor an explicit demand/order from one of her religious superiors.

    In JMJ,
    Scott<<<

    ReplyDelete
  19. "Accepting" abortion and actually procuring one are two different issues.

    Yes, the former is enabling millions of abortions (in Pelosi's case), while the latter enacts only one.
    You decide which is worse.


    Yes, the Catholic hierarchy has spoken out that Catholic politicians SHOULD oppose abortion - but that does not elevate this to a matter of dogma.

    1) It sounds like abortion isn't really a big deal, then, to the RCC.
    2) Has it been infallibly defined that abortion is evil? If not, how do you know it actually is evil?
    If so, why wouldn't it be a pretty big deal?



    Again, "accepting" homosexuals as fellow sinners is not contrary to Catholic teaching and this is based in Scripture too.

    Come now, you know as well as I do that Pelosi accepts homosexualITY as legitimate. And is in a position to make law to that effect. Please don't throw out red herrings like that.


    What evidence do you have that she's refused to repent of an actual sin?

    Her continued support of abortion. Her continued support of gay marriage.
    This isn't that hard, not for someone with open eyes. You know, this would all be a moot question if the RCC had kicked her out on her rear like they should have.
    I asked my pastor about this just last night, just b/c I was curious. He was like "Um, of course we would have church disciplined her, a LONG time ago." But the RCC has other considerations, like kissing up to big-time politicians and keeping her praise from men unsullied. You talk a big game, but when the rubber hits the road, your "faith" is dead; there are no works.


    So long as abortion remains "legal" in the United States, what precisely do you expect the Speaker of the House to do? It is her political duty to uphold the Law of the United States.

    She's a lawmaker. I'd expect to support and lobby for legislation that would outlaw murdering babies, instead of opposing that kind of thing. Now you're just making excuses for her, and it's sad to see. Even a conservative, serious RC like you can't bring yourself to make the obvious connection and call sin sin.


    I cannot speak with absolute certainty for the specific reason that I am NOT her bishop!

    1) You apparently can barely bring yourself to criticise him.
    2) I'm arguing, as should be clear, that she should in no way be still a member, nor taking the Eucharist from the hand of the Pope himself. That's the biblical doctrine of church discipline. My church, a schismatic church in sin, practices it. Why doesn't the RCC? And why don't you criticise the RCC when it doesn't do so? That at minimum would be your responsibility before God. Here, you're making excuses.


    The Catholic Church's position on abortion has remained unchanged since the very beginning of the Church. You can read details here.

    It's one thing to have a great past. What has RCC been doing recently to show it still takes baby murder seriously?
    (This is not to take anythg away from what's been done, but you say it's remained UNCHANGED, yet it clearly has changed.)


    When does the moral conviction of any professing Christian take precedence over the legislative responsibilities of one who represents both Christians and non-Christians?

    A fine question, but the line is well short of throwing all one's support IN FAVOR of the legality of baby murder. It's hardly even relevant to what we're discussing here, it's so obvious.


    Morally on this issue I believe you and I are in agreement

    Not at all; you apparently think it's perfectly fine for a church to ignore a powerful politician within its walls who thinks baby murder is a good thing.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Alan,
    The reason I state that I believe we are morally on the same page is because we both oppose abortion. We both disagree with Speaker Pelosi's stance on this matter.

    I also must say that I have not fully researched Pelosi's statements and positions - though I've been appalled when I've heard them. The sad part is that she tries to cling to loopholes and vague statements - like she quoted from St. Augustine of not knowing exactly when ensoulment takes place and therefore, at least within the first three months (again, St. Augustine arguing) it cannot be said with certainty that a being without sensation has a soul. (Saint Augustine, On Exodus 21.22)

    Now again, not only do I agree with you, many public Catholics do as well. Canon lawyer, Pete Vere has been outspoken on this, he too believes she should be excommunicated for violation of Canon 915 (Source).

    As I said in my initial response to you, if I were her bishop I would likely do things differently. Your beef is really with Abp. Niederhaur who said:
    I regret the necessity of addressing these issues in so public a forum, but the widespread consternation among Catholics made it unavoidable. Speaker Pelosi has often said how highly she values her Catholic faith, and how much it is a source of joy for her. Accordingly, as her pastor, I am writing to invite her into a conversation with me about these matters. It is my obligation to teach forthrightly and to shepherd caringly, and that is my intent. Let us pray together that the Holy Spirit will guide us all toward a more profound understanding and appreciation for human life, and toward a resolution of these differences in truth and charity and peace. (Source).

    I say we need to pray for Abp. Niederhauer that he does the right thing and for Speaker Pelosi that she repents of the error of her ways.

    Alan, you seem to want to "make hay" and "sow discord" rather than pray for healing and that good be done and come from all this. You seem to be happy that Speaker Pelosi has caused such scandal among Catholics - Catholics who have typically been at the forefront of Right to Life issues.

    In JMJ,
    Scott<<<

    ReplyDelete
  21. Alan, you seem to want to "make hay" and "sow discord" rather than pray for healing and that good be done and come from all this.

    Well, I don't want to be less than honest. Since I consider the RCC to be a false church with a false gospel, I certainly do want to sow discord here. But my point is very simple - you claim to follow the Bible. The Bible says that we must discipline professed members of the Body of Christ, for serious sin and teaching serious sin among other reasons. Murdering babies is a serious sin, and pushing legislation that makes it legal is enabling serious sin, thus being in itself a serious sin.
    So discipline her and her ilk. Kick them out. I would give the RCC a hearty attaboy if y'all would man up and actually back up your hot air with action. Until then, you earn nothing but scorn and contempt for your hypocrisy, excuses, and loving the praise of men rather than fearing God.

    ReplyDelete
  22. > AR: Well, I don't want to be
    > less than honest. Since I
    > consider the RCC to be a false
    > church with a false gospel, I
    > certainly do want to sow discord
    > here.

    sw: Thank you for being honest. It is sad that you wish to sow discord rather than work toward healing.

    > AR: But my point is very simple
    > - you claim to follow the Bible.
    > The Bible says that we must
    > discipline professed members of
    > the Body of Christ, for serious
    > sin and teaching serious sin
    > among other reasons. Murdering
    > babies is a serious sin, and
    > pushing legislation that makes
    > it legal is enabling serious
    > sin, thus being in itself a
    > serious sin. So discipline her
    > and her ilk. Kick them out. I
    > would give the RCC a hearty
    > attaboy if y'all would man up
    > and actually back up your hot
    > air with action. Until then, you
    > earn nothing but scorn and
    > contempt for your hypocrisy,
    > excuses, and loving the praise
    > of men rather than fearing God.

    sw: So when they put me in charge of the San Francisco diocese (which isn't going to happen) then I can do things differently, as I said I would. Outside of that, I cannot discipline Speaker Pelosi. I am not being hypocritical, it just is not within my means to do otherwise. I expressed my desire to do something different - you boast that I defied a bishop of the Catholic Church. I point out the loopholes (which I do not agree with) that Speaker Pelosi hides behind - and you accuse me of excuse making. No matter how *I* answer, you will try to find fault with it because, as you stated, your mission is to sow discord - not healing.

    The point is, THE CHURCH teaches it right. If Abp. Niederhauer gets it wrong or Skr. Pelosi gets it wrong - it is not the CHURCH which is in error here. Certain leaders IN the Church may have problems, but that does not make the Church itself in error. You seem to continually make that leap into a false/invalid argument.

    In JMJ,
    Scott<<<

    ReplyDelete
  23. No matter how *I* answer

    False.
    I guess I need to spell it out for you. Here's what you need to say.


    I, Scott Windsor, am appalled at:
    1) the Roman Catholic Church's hierarchy's obvious and obstinate refusal to accomplish biblical New Testament church discipline by insisting she repent in a reasonably brief amount of time and formally excommunicating her if she refuses;
    2) the Pope's going so far as even to serve the Eucharist to her recently; and
    3) the Roman Catholic Church's hierarchy's refusal to make something so clearly necessary and exemplary happen, even if it should mean the disciplining of the priest, bishop, and archbishop, and anyone else clogging up the works, in order that the Church's witness be not tainted by appeasing political power that prefers to murder babies than to admit it is wrong.

    In light of these facts, I, Scott Windsor, state unequivocally that the Roman Catholic Church has in modern times done much to change its reputation as unabashedly pro-life, though she claims that her pro-life stance is unchanged. I call upon the Church to do what it should do, and contend firmly that she must change, now, or else stand in direct opposition to God's clear command.


    I don't think that's too much to ask. I'm not even sure leaving the church for one who actually does what it says with respect to baby-murder is too much to ask. Question is, do you have the guts to do it?

    ReplyDelete
  24. I've said what I've said. I'm not going to go by your little script. I've expressed my beliefs on this matter and pray that the leaders responsible here do the right thing.

    As for leaving the Church over some bishop in another diocese not doing what *I* would like them to do - that's ridiculous. Even if I were living in the Archdiocese of San Francisco, I would not leave the Church because the archbishop didn't do things the way I expect him to do them. I'm not in the Catholic Church because of Archbishop Niederhauer - I'm a Catholic because the Holy Ghost has revealed to me the Truth - that even when there have been problems in the Church, past or present, there is only ONE PLACE I can receive the Real Presence in the Eucharist. To go off to some impostor cult because everything didn't go my way would be foolish.

    I wasn't born a Catholic, but by the Grace of God - I'll die one.

    In JMJ,
    Scott<<<

    ReplyDelete
  25. there is only ONE PLACE I can receive the Real Presence in the Eucharist.

    I guess there is only ONE PLACE people who think baby murder is cool can receive the Real Presence in the Eucharist.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Alan,
    Not a single Catholic, not even Speaker Pelosi, has said "baby murder is cool." You're imputing your presuppositionalism upon all of Catholicism because of your perceived error in one, or a few. Even if what you said were true, you still do not have the Real Presence in the Eucharist outside the valid apostolic succession of Christ's one true Church.

    In JMJ,
    Scott<<<

    ReplyDelete
  27. Scot,

    I am afraid you don't understand my argument about authority.

    My point is this: Unless one accepts your claims of papal authority, your arguments don't amount to a hill of beans. It is not a "they are no better than we are" argument except to the extent that if division is proof of a failing at the center of one's epistemology for one group, why should another group get an exception "just because"?

    Oh yeah, because the second group is the *true* group...

    Anyway, pointing out the functional uselessness of your arguments from authority are simply statement of fact. If you want to base your arguments on authority go ahead--but you had better make sure the other guy accepts said authority or you will be beating the air, no matter how many times you assert your authority is the real authority--because that is all it is, an assertion.

    Regarding the Orthodox, I used this to show that there is another church which makes similar claims to your church, and indeed they deny your Apostolic Succession and assert their own--just like you do to prots. (Which makes it quite amusing when RC apologists act like they are chums with the EO) You say the position of protestantism is "even less" than that of Orthodoxy, on the basis of nothing but your alleged proof that your authority is the real authority. Unfortunately for you, I don't believe in the Majesterium's claims (something we share with the EOdox)--I think they are misunderstandings at best and satanic lies at worst. So, functionally, I don't care how you characterize the protestant position. So, go ahead and assert away and make believe it matters to someone who is not already part of the team. You still have not proven anything except that you believe you follow the "correct" authority. So what? Everyone believes that.

    You then end with a laughable fallacy--I am to prove a negative:

    "Well, therein lies your burden of proof! Prove to us that God didn't ordain the first Catholic bishops and then they, through the Holy Ghost, ordained the succession of bishops throughout history to this day. There are other points for me to raise, but for now this one should suffice."

    I don't have to prove any such thing just because you used your private interpretation to determine Rome is the True Church (TM). Others have used their private interpretation and arrived at a different conclusion. You have yet to even begin to show why your claims are better than others'--except proof by assertion of..authority.

    ReplyDelete
  28. "seriously considering the move to Orthodoxy"

    A move to Orthodoxy from what?

    ReplyDelete
  29. > ER: I am afraid you don't
    > understand my argument about
    > authority.
    >
    > My point is this: Unless one
    > accepts your claims of papal
    > authority, your arguments don't
    > amount to a hill of beans.

    sw: Our first pope, Pope St. Peter, was given authority in primacy to bind or loose whatsoever he chose. Jesus was speaking to him alone when He promised this authority to St. Peter (Matthew 16:18-19). Now later He promised a similar authority the rest of our first bishops. It is similar but not the same for in Matthew 18:18 Jesus is addressing the Apostles as a group, not singularly as He did with St. Peter in chapter 16. Still, the authority of the Church does not rest solely with the Bishop of Rome (St. Peter's successor), but also with the college of bishops when they meet in ecumenical council.

    sw: We also do not dismiss the authority of Scripture, but where Catholics vary from Protestants is in the fact that we accept that Scripture is not the sole infallible authority for the Church, especially since within Scripture itself it declares what I mentioned above - the authority to bind or loose whatsoever they chose is infallible authority given to our first bishops and as they were sent out, so they too must send others out (John 20:21).

    > ER: It is not a "they are no
    > better than we are" argument
    > except to the extent that if
    > division is proof of a failing
    > at the center of one's
    > epistemology for one group, why
    > should another group get an
    > exception "just because"? Oh
    > yeah, because the second group
    > is the *true* group...

    sw: When you insert the "except" clause above you negate your denial. It truly IS a "you're no better than we are" argument. That being said, even if we accept your argument, the Catholic Church is united in acceptance of the Bishop of Rome as St. Peter's successor. Faithful Catholics are in communion with the successor of St. Peter.

    (Breaking Here)

    ReplyDelete
  30. (Continued from previous)

    > ER: Anyway, pointing out the
    > functional uselessness of your
    > arguments from authority are
    > simply statement of fact. If you
    > want to base your arguments on
    > authority go ahead--but you had
    > better make sure the other guy
    > accepts said authority or you
    > will be beating the air, no
    > matter how many times you assert
    > your authority is the real
    > authority--because that is all
    > it is, an assertion.

    1) I beg to differ with you that all it is, is an assertion - for I have provided Scripture and other facts to support said assertions. You may be of a different interpretation, but it would be quite false to say my argumentation is purely unsubstantiated assertion.

    2) I would rather be beating the air then yielding to a falsehood just because someone else does not accept the evidence/arguments I have put forth. I always have in the back of my mind that the person I'm debating with may not really be the person God has listening to me.

    > ER: Regarding the Orthodox, I
    > used this to show that there is
    > another church which makes
    > similar claims to your church,
    > and indeed they deny your
    > Apostolic Succession and assert
    > their own--just like you do to
    > prots. (Which makes it quite
    > amusing when RC apologists act
    > like they are chums with the EO)

    sw: Well, there you are flatly wrong. Orthodoxy does indeed recognize that the Bishop of Rome is the valid successor to St. Peter's See and that he is the valid patriarch of the Latin Church. Likewise, we recognize that Orthodoxy stems from the apostolic roots (St. Andrew, who was originally a disciple of St. John the Baptist). There are issues between the Latin Church and Orthodoxy - but valid apostolic succession is not one of them.

    > ER: You say the position of
    > protestantism is "even less"
    > than that of Orthodoxy, on the
    > basis of nothing but your
    > alleged proof that your
    > authority is the real authority.

    sw: My "proof" is among the valid apostolic succession found in both the RCC and EOC. These successions can be traced all the way back to the Apostles who were the original bishops given authority in the Christian Church. If you're not in communion with one of them, then your "church" really has NO authority so far as Christianity is concerned.

    (Breaking Here)

    ReplyDelete
  31. (Continued from previous)

    > ER: Unfortunately for you, I
    > don't believe in the
    > Majesterium's claims (something
    > we share with the EOdox)

    sw: I would say it is unfortunate for you - not me. You share almost nothing with the EOC, and again, you're simply wrong about the RCC and EOC not recognizing the validity of each other's apostolic succession.

    > ER: --I think they are
    > misunderstandings at best and
    > satanic lies at worst.

    sw: You have not identified what "they" (these claims) are.

    > ER: So, functionally, I don't
    > care how you characterize the
    > protestant position. So, go
    > ahead and assert away and make
    > believe it matters to someone
    > who is not already part of the
    > team.

    sw: I am not playing make-believe nor am I reliant upon 16th century innovations to Christ's Gospel, but this thread is about Catholic authority, not Protestant authority. I've already done some pieces on "sola scriptura," and will likely do another one soon.

    > ER: You still have not proven
    > anything except that you believe
    > you follow the "correct"
    > authority. So what? Everyone
    > believes that.

    sw: If that was ALL I did, then you'd have a point. I've supported myself and the objective reader can see the truth here.

    > ER: You then end with a
    > laughable fallacy--I am to prove
    > a negative:
    >
    >> sw: "Well, therein lies your
    >> burden of proof! Prove to us
    >> that God didn't ordain the
    >> first Catholic bishops and then
    >> they, through the Holy Ghost,
    >> ordained the succession of
    >> bishops throughout history to
    >> this day. There are other
    >> points for me to raise, but for
    >> now this one should suffice."

    sw: I agree with you to a point here, the way I worded that it was an invalid challenge for you to prove a negative - however, I have stated a positive which has not been negated - so that is hardly "laughable."

    > ER: I don't have to prove any
    > such thing just because you used
    > your private interpretation to
    > determine Rome is the True
    > Church (TM). Others have used
    > their private interpretation and
    > arrived at a different
    > conclusion.

    sw: Ultimately there is ONE Truth, and finding that ONE Truth is the responsibility of all Christians. Blindly adhering to some cult because your parents did or because some charismatic leader has you buffaloed is quite risky, considering how one will spend eternity hinges upon this!

    > ER: You have yet to even begin
    > to show why your claims are
    > better than others'--except
    > proof by assertion of..authority.

    sw: I beg to differ with your interpretation of the facts and I have already stated why.

    In JMJ,
    Scott<<<

    ReplyDelete
  32. Not a single Catholic, not even Speaker Pelosi, has said "baby murder is cool."

    More excuses and tap-dancing. You know exactly what I mean but choose to obscure the issue. Why is it so hard to say "the bishop is wrong, and his superior who refuses to correct him is wrong, and his, and his, etc."? Is it pride or just blind obedience?

    ReplyDelete
  33. I have answered you. The FACTS are that neither you nor me nor anyone outside of that private meeting between the Pope and Speaker Pelosi knows what was said at that meeting. I don't know that she's not been disciplined nor if she continues to receive the Eucharist and/or whether or not that is in direct defiance of what the Pope told her. You're constructing a huge libelous argument and have not documented (quoting and citing sources) and you attempt to get me to commit to your hearsay allegations based on hearsay and assumptions. Perhaps your pastor should be disciplining you for such libelous behavior? If you were being responsible, you'd have provided sound and verifiable documentation of ongoing violation and you've done no such thing. What you've done is little different from gossip.

    Scott<<<

    ReplyDelete
  34. Um, if she's really changed, where is the proof?
    Given that she keeps supporting baby murder and homosexuality, wouldn't that be clear evidence that either she refused to accept the discipline (in which case she should be excomm'd and the RCC is neglectful) or wasn't disciplined (in which the RCC is neglectful)?

    Dance! It's getting sadder and sadder.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Alan,
    I'm just not "dancing" to your tune. You have been answered. You continue to irresponsibly and libelously accuse without providing any documentation of ongoing abuse, and then you ask ME to do your homework for you! I'm not the one levying libelous accusations. You go out and support yourself, or let the record stand on your unChristian behavior. And yes, it is not Christian to publicly make allegations with absolutely no valid and verifiable documentation. You accuse ME of "dancing" - when in reality it is you who is dancing away from the responsibility of presenting valid evidence to support your libel.

    My answer to you remains as it was the first time I gave it. IF I were her bishop I would probably do things differently. I am NOT her bishop, I am NOT privy to the discussion she had with the Pope nor has she shared with me what she's confessed in the confessional. As a Christian, I cannot go out and make blatant and undocumented accusations - but somehow you feel OK doing that. But again, my answer to you remains the same as it was originally - how is that "dancing?"

    It seems you're acting like a young spoiled brat who cannot get his way so you've resorted to juvenile posturing. I won't "dance" to your tune and you're getting all huffy about it. Yes, that is sad.

    Scott<<<

    ReplyDelete
  36. Scott,

    Are you willing to affirm Pelosi has not received communion since the papal mass? Since May 2009?

    Your defense seems to boil down to we don't know every detail so we should trust the Majesterium--but *we do* know what happens in public. Not can we watch, we have prelates saying things like this:

    "Archbishop Donald Wuerl of Washington, D.C. has stated that he would not deny Holy Communion to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, one of the most notoriously pro-abortion "Catholic" politicians in the U.S., because he says historically 'the Church just didn't use Communion as a weapon.'"

    ...

    "Wuerl said he will make no effort to keep Speaker Pelosi from receiving Communion, saying first 'there's a question about whether this canon [915] was ever intended to be used' to correct Catholics in grave error.

    Canon 915 states: 'Those upon whom the penalty of excommunication or interdict has been imposed or declared, and others who obstinately persist in manifest grave sin, are not to be admitted to holy communion.'

    Link: http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2009/may/09050613.html

    This was May 2009. The papal audience happened in February 2009.

    So, on one side we have you, who say that you would not commune her. On the other, we have an archbishop and a pope who give her communion publicly.

    The question is, why should anyone take your private interpretation over who *should* be allowed to receive over and against the public acts of members of the Majesterium? In other words, "we don't know if the pope took her to the woodshed" is rather thin gruel since in every case we can verify, she has received the Body and Blood of Christ.

    Objectively, she is in full communion, and she herself says so, too--loudly

    Show me your faith without works and I will show you my faith by my works...

    ReplyDelete
  37. Are you willing to affirm Pelosi has not received communion since the papal mass? Since May 2009?

    I am not willing to affirm such because I do not know. I do not know if she's withholding herself from the Eucharist. Just because a bishop states "we don't use Communion as a weapon," doesn't mean she's actually approached that bishop or one of his delegates, to receive Eucharist. This could all be a bunch of hot air coming from Alan because he's not provided any proof that she's continuing to receive the Sacrament.

    In JMJ,
    Scott<<<

    ReplyDelete
  38. This could all be a bunch of hot air coming from Alan because he's not provided any proof that she's continuing to receive the Sacrament.

    She did, in 2008, in the article cited.
    The Pope himself gave it to her.

    Has the Pope ever said "oops" on that? I'd like to know.

    2008 is a very very long time to go w/o any action taken to discipline her. The lengths to which you're willing to go to avoid saying that the RCC has been in the wrong on this question continues to astound.

    It's not like she was elected to her first stint in gov't in 2008. Nor did she become RC in 2008. Nor did she convert to pro-baby-murder and pro-homosexuality in 2008.
    This is common knowledge. The combination of membership in RCC and pro- these two things has continued for many years, and no significant action has been taken up to 2008 (and let's be honest, it's clear that none has been taken up to the present). What's so hard about obeying Jesus and excomming her? Are you planning on showing your faith by your works anytime soon?

    No, let me guess. More excuses.

    ReplyDelete
  39. Guess away, oh ignorant one - but next time research your facts a bit before spouting off. She received in 2008, her meeting with Pope Benedict was in February of 2009.

    I've been doing some research of my own, and I can find NOTHING to indicate that she's been receiving the Eucharist since that meeting. Do you have something? Have you ever had any hard facts? You've named some facts, but you STILL have not provided verifiable documentation and citation on the matter.

    Did Pope Benedict scold her and she has since then withheld herself from the Eucharist? Or will you only be satisfied with a public flogging, or hey, let's just tie her to a stake and start piling up the kindling - is that what you're after, Alan? You're continuing on with this "inquisition" as if you KNOW ALL the facts - when clearly, you do not. You're speculating and trying to usurp some sort of "higher ground" argument from this whole situation - when all along you have been guilty of scandalous libel without any valid documentation to support your allegations. If that's your "high ground," then it's a pretty pathetic little hill.

    Scott<<<

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  40. Or will you only be satisfied with a public flogging, or hey, let's just tie her to a stake and start piling up the kindling - is that what you're after, Alan?

    Um, I don't think a Roman Catholic should be joking about burning people at the stake.
    What I want, actually, is either that she be excomm'd or that she repent. Prefer the latter. It's very simple.


    You're continuing on with this "inquisition" as if you KNOW ALL the facts - when clearly, you do not.

    I don't need to know all of them, just sufficient ones. And if neither of the above has happened, then...

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  41. I presented a news story of Rome's reaction/explanation to the Pope Benedict XVI/Speaker Pelosi meeting - and Alan responds to his bickering entry from his own blog site.

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  42. Scott,

    "I presented a news story of Rome's reaction/explanation to the Pope Benedict XVI/Speaker Pelosi meeting - and Alan responds to his bickering entry from his own blog site."

    Well, he still gave her communion. Taht is more important than some "strong" words, isn't it? Doesn't action speak louder than words? That is the issue. As has been stated, I don;t think anyone is stating that the RCC is formally against abortion--that is very, very easy to show. The problem is that the RCC allows people who are proudly pro-hoice, i.e. pro an intrinsic evil, to publicly receive communion. You are asking us to take it on faith, more or less, that the Majesterium could well be working diligently behind the scenes. The problem is that the acts of the bishops do not comport with the formal teaching that abortion is intrinsically evil.

    I think that it is a travesty. In fact, have a look at the following link:

    http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/2007-05-09-pope-brazil_N.htm

    Money quotes:

    "'Do you agree with the excommunications given to legislators in Mexico City on the question?' a reporter asked.

    'Yes. The excommunication was not something arbitrary. It is part of the (canon law) code. It is based simply on the principle that the killing of an innocent human child is incompatible with going in Communion with the body of Christ. Thus, they (the bishops) didn't do anything new or anything surprising. Or arbitrary.'

    Church officials later said the pope may have thought the Mexican bishops had issued a formal declaration of excommunication for the legislators — something Mexican Cardinal Norberto Rivera has said he has no intention of doing.

    ...

    'Since excommunication hasn't been declared by the Mexican bishops, the pope has no intention himself of declaring it,' Lombardi said in a statement approved by the pope.

    But Lombardi added that politicians who vote in favor of abortion should not receive the sacrament of Holy Communion. 'Legislative action in favor of abortion is incompatible with participation in the Eucharist... Politicians exclude themselves from Communion.'

    Pressed again to say whether the lawmakers were excommunicated, Lombardi reiterated: 'No, they exclude themselves from Communion.'"

    Interestingly, the pope seemed to have a straight forward answer--the excommunication of the pols, but his retinue "clarified" his statements to mean that even if these pols are formally excommunicated by their support for abortion they may still receive communion. OK. But it seems odd that an excommunicated person should be able to receive the Body and Blood of Christ. In the Lutheran church we believe that one can excommunicate one's self and deviously receive anyway, but the difference is that the sins of the pols are quite public. Again, it seems odd. Apparently there is a mode of being excommunicated which does not entail being refused the Body and Blood of Christ, which is called *communion*.

    Oh, I found this quote to be interesting:

    "The Mexican politicians who supported the measure shrugged off Benedict's comments Wednesday. 'I'm Catholic and I'm going to continue being Catholic even if the church excommunicates me,' said leftist Mexico City lawmaker Leticia Quezada. 'My conscience is clean.'"

    Apparently she has not received the message that the pope is the vicar of Christ.

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  43. Edward,
    Since the topic has drifted a bit from the original and since the comments are getting a bit too long for the length limit for the comments section, I have answered you here.

    Thanks!
    Scott<<<

    http://cathapol.blogspot.com/2009/12/excommunication-and-abortion.html

    ReplyDelete

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