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“Put the Flicker on for a Right Turn, but Go Left.”

(Image credit: By meandmybadself [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons)

Over at LifeSiteNews, editor-in-chief John-Henry Westen has an analysis of the current state of confusion as regards the papal position on Holy Communion for the divorced and “remarried” boldly titled, Pope Francis is playing with fire. Hell fire.

Westen has, as we’ve recently noted, been taking a harder line against Francis, and is being met with a positive response from Catholics who are not a part of the “traditionalist” movement, where such criticisms originally seemed to take deepest root. In his new piece, Westen observes:

We had his signature on a letter supporting the Buenos Aires bishops’ interpretation of Amoris Laetitia. We had testimony to the Pope’s view by Germany’s Cardinal Marx, one of the Pope’s Council of 9 Cardinals. We had the Maltese bishops say so. We had the chief interpreter of legislative texts at the Vatican say so. And we’ve seen numerous articles published in the Vatican newspaper advocating this break with Tradition.

There have been a couple of opposing voices, such as that of Cardinal Muller, the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith, and most recently the Chilean bishops.

While the statements from Cardinal Muller seemed to be more his own opinion than that of the Pope, the Chilean bishops recently made comments to one of Chile’s major papers that seemed to indicate Pope Francis himself gave them a conservative interpretation of his exhortation forbidding Communion for divorced and remarried Catholics. In addition, some Catholic bloggers have interpreted the Chilean bishops’ statements to indicate that Pope Francis also opposes communion for Catholic politicians who support abortion. Some have even taken from the bishops’ remarks that the Pope rejects a married priesthood, contradicting what he said to the German newspaper Die Zeit in an interview only a short time after their meeting.

To sort all this out is not easy. One key comes from the Catholic Herald’s Dan Hitchens. He points out correctly that the reporter who interviewed the Chilean bishops, and those commenting on the bishops’ remarks, may actually be engaging in wishful thinking.

I would also recommend my own analysis of this matter here and here. Boiled down, it can be summarized as follows:

  1. What the Chilean bishops are saying amounts to nothing more than hearsay, particularly in light of the overwhelming evidence already in existence that the pope’s position is indistinguishable from the so-called “Kasper proposal”.
  2. Self-contradiction has been part of Francis’ mode of operation from day one, and as Hilary White argued some time ago, the purpose of all this confusion seems to be to help him foment his power, through a forced acquiescence to his ever-evolving hermeneutic of self. Or as she so succinctly put it, his answer to those trying to understand what Amoris Laetitia means is: “It means what I say it means. It means shut up.” If you want to know what Francis means, you have to listen to what he’s saying today, and forget what he said yesterday. He’s the only decoder ring to all of his own incomprehensible verbal chaff.
  3. Allowing the Chilean bishops to disseminate the idea that he is in fact in favor of the orthodox position on Communion for the “remarried” acts as an effective smokescreen against the Four Cardinals and their allegedly still-in-the-works formal correction. It’s far harder to correct a guy throwing out mixed signals than one who is perfectly clear.

This is where Westen brings to bear an anecdote that I found particularly illuminating:

For those who knew Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio prior to his election to the pontificate, this is nothing new. I spoke to a few priests from Buenos Aires who worked with Cardinal Bergoglio in different capacities and from them learned that confusion is emblematic of his ministry. One anecdote in particular was very instructive. I was told that people from opposite camps would both come out of meetings with Cardinal Bergoglio believing he supported their position. “He’s with us but can’t say so publicly,” they would relate, as would those who met with him from the opposing camp.

While in an archdiocese this may work for a time, this learned priest told me, in the Vatican where just about everything the Pope says is trumpeted to the world, these kinds of discrepancies become evident more quickly. Francis, the priest told me, is very much a Peronist — named for former Argentina President Juan Domingo Perón. Like Perón, Pope Francis plays with both left wing and right wing factions.

The priest tells a story about President Peron that helps to understand Francis. Once Peron was in his car and at a fork in the road his driver asked him which way he would like to go, to which Peron replied: “Put the flicker on for a right turn, but go left.”

And there you have it. Every time this happens, it’s like deja vu all over again.

82 thoughts on ““Put the Flicker on for a Right Turn, but Go Left.””

  1. So my dubia to Pope Francis would be:

    1.) Are you conflicted with the tenets. dogmas of the faith?
    2.) Do you disagree with the tenets, dogma of the faith and if so please state?
    3.) Are you attempting to deceive faithful Catholics by talking out of two sides of your mouth?
    4.) Do you believe in the Incarnation, Sanctifying Grace?
    5.) WHO are you?

    • The answers to your “dubia” would be just as confusing and contradictory as everything else this alleged pope puts out. His pontificate and his inner circle is all under the control/influence of the Father of Lies. Satan is making his final moves to destroy the Church and Frsncis is his frontman/ambassador.

        • Indeed! But that’s what we should be doing anyway at all times. Jesus tells us to be ever watchful and always to be ready to grret the Bridegroom because we don’t know when He will arrive.

    • All I know concretely cs, is that confusion, of which this man is a master of, is NOT from God. Confusion is from Satan himself.

      • Yes, this is true. Pope Francis’s confusion may stem from many different reasons, as I attempted to point out in my post here. Regardless of the reasons, it is terribly harmful to the Church and souls. I continue to pray for him, for the sake of our Church, the many, and his soul as well.
        In the meantime, i simply do my best to avoid all he says and does.
        So sad.

          • Lucy always holds the football for Charlie Brown, and when he comes running to kick the ball, she pulls it away at the last second.

            If Charlie Brown remonstrates with her about pulling the football away, Lucy says that she won’t do it again. Charlie Brown believes her, she holds the football again, pulls it away again and Charlie Brown falls on his back again.

            It’s a recurring theme in the cartoons of the late Charles M. Schultz.

          • SO true. Lucy is the Master Psychologist Manipulator (Remember her “The Doctor is IN” psychiatric help for 5 cents???) and Charlie Brown is the ever trustful Everyman who hopes-beyond-hope that he can trust what he’s told by Lucy.

            Hmmm. Sounds like the Church. Lucy is the uber-hierarchy telling all of us we are nuts to think as we do —- “TRUST US!!!” and Charlie Brown is us traddie-Cats, hanging in there and working against our own gut in order to keep on believing. Maybe sometimes seeing what we want to see??

            There is a reason that fiction is often more potent an explication of the Truth than mere fact.

          • LOL!!! 🙂 Sorry for the delay to your witty comment, I was teaching. Boring stuff. Nutrition. 🙂

  2. Mr. Westen is one of the heroes today. I know LifeSiteNews has lost a number of donors over the past year. God bless them for holding to the truth.

  3. Actually, Steve, you left out the line from Westen’s story that struck me the hardest:

    One last note about Bergoglio, related by the priest, is that when pushed, he will go left out of a great apprehension of being labeled a right-winger by the media.

    And that seems to fit the pattern of what we have seen of him in Rome so far. Come to think of it, it’s true of quite a few other bishops, too.

  4. It’s not just Yogi Bear who provides an apt quote for this pontificate but we could also call upon Yogi Berra with his ‘If you see a fork in the road, take it’. Francis has turned that particular piece of advice into an art form…modern(ist) art, that is.

    • Excellent! Yogi Berra is a true sage. He is now a football fan, by the way, and in his wisdom managing a new team, “The Heavenly Host,” against “The Boys from Hell.” Here is their cheerleaders’ chant:

      “The day was bright and sunny,
      In Heaven’s own back yard,
      With Jesus playing Quarterback,
      and Moses playing Guard.
      The Angels on the sidelines,
      gave out a mighty yell,
      as Jesus scored a touchdown,
      against the Boys from Hell!

      On with God!, On with God!
      Jesus on the ten-yard-line,
      and He’s looking Oh!, so fine!

      On with God, On with God!
      Big “G”, little “o-d”
      Yaaaaaaaaaaaaay, GOD!”

      (Yes, I know. I’m nuts. 🙂

      • Nuts is good. It’s the decades-long insanity that the Church is in the grip of that’s a bit more problematic.

        To plagiarize Yogi B. again: The Church hierarchy is 90% modernist and the other half are not even catholic anymore.

  5. His occasional forays into actual Catholic sentiments are a tour de force. He creates massive confusion and keeps everybody off balance. Actually, this doesn’t work as well as it did, because now many get what he is doing. It took many people a few years before it was generally accepted that he is barely Catholic, let alone fit to be pope. How many maddening times have we read “If only he didn’t have all those bad men around him!”, as if surrounding himself with heretics and destroyers wasn’t his plan. Or how often did we read questions about his mentality, his cognitive abilities. His abilities are just fine, he’s firing on all cylinders, and feeling the mojo because he is in power, and he’s right where the diabolical Cardinals wanted him. Only God can stop him now.
    I call him “The Pope of Dorian Grey”, because has anyone else noticed he seems to get younger with each passing year? The man has one lung, but you’d never know it. That one lung fuels a lot of heresy and hatred toward the Church.

    • “How many maddening times have we read ‘If only he didn’t have all those
      bad men around him!’, as if surrounding himself with heretics and destroyers
      wasn’t his plan.”

      There’s the old saying “personnel is policy”. This Holy Father has driven away
      orthodox prelates (Cardinals Burke and Canizares-Llovera, for example), side-
      lined orthodox prelates he keeps around because they’re useful (like Cardinals
      Pell and Muller), and brought into his circle numerous prelates who are of very
      dubious orthodoxy (Kasper, Daneels, Bianchi, Ronchi, Cantalamessa, Fernandez,
      etc.). As you point out, Evangeline, it’s no accident these men are in his inner

  6. Thanks for this. It’s good to see people staying vigilant. There are a lot of people who sense something is wrong, but who (because they are adverse to conflict by their natural disposition) are trying to hold onto anything the Pope says to believe he’s fully orthodox. It’s important to address false hopes immediately.

    • I think these people who are still denying the heresy that Francis is promoting are in (what we call) denial. Their brains just will not allow them to think that the successor of Peter is causing spiritual chaos for nefarious purposes. It’s a pretty hefty betrayal, if you think about it. I compare it to a wife who, after obvious and in your face evidence, refuses to believe that her husband is cheating on her. (I’ve known a couple of these situations with relatives) People just don’t want to ‘go there’, it’s just too painful, so in their subconscious they grab on to ANY sign of normalcy that denies the obvious.

  7. “… through a forced acquiescence to his ever-evolving hermeneutic of self.”
    Is this not the perfect description of the modus operandi of a pathological narcissist? Certainly the Church in her long history has dealt with such individuals without respite, and in its effort to distinguish between authentic teachers and the aberrant has utilized conformity to Holy Scripture,
    the Apostolic Tradition and the perennial Magisterium as a constant norm.
    We now have an individualist in supreme “unassailable” authority who has no regard for any of those three norms unless they serve his purpose. How is one to judge the declarations and propositions of such a one?
    By the same norms.
    This is all of design. That the hierarchy is unable and/or unwilling to exercise decisive intervention is in itself a scandal of an even greatest measure. The nefarious are acting out in broad daylight, of no greater moral character than a neighborhood over taken by virulent crime.
    There is no longer any question that this man is unsuited and unqualified for his position by reason of mental impairment. He and his cartel need be boldly exposed. There are a lot of people who can bring this episode to an end, and in so doing make sure there is not a repeat performance.
    Where are the men willing to risk all to save souls?

  8. At least Francis has made one task easier. Whenever I see his name attached to any pronouncement, I am immediately on guard for malarkey; usually I manage to find it quickly by merely skim reading the article. It saves time and effort.

    • I’m barely 9 years a Catholic convert now and I’m at the point where I don’t care nor trust what the Pope of my beloved Catholic faith has to say. How sad.

      • Nick, if you read a good history of the Church, you will find there’s nothing new here. In fact, even as a disastrous pope, Bergoglio probably fails to get the gold medal; he’s likely just a silver or bronze medalist. And the situation for the faithful has frequently been far more dire. In 1793, in the Vendée, things undoubtedly looked very bleak; ditto under the Reds in Republican Spain, or under the atheists in Mexico, just to offer three examples. I have a personal hypothesis that what really counts for Jesus is our stubbornness, our ability to spit in the eye of tormentors as we say, “Try your worst, mate, you’re going to fail with me. I really don’t give a tinker’s dam what you say or do, I’m sticking with the faith!” My ancestors were Irish and this is basically what they said to the English heretics who tried to pry them loose from the Rosary, the Mass, and authentic Catholic practices. (The Irish had and have the virtue of pigheadedness in abundance. Unfortunately, today’s Irish have lost the faith and retained only their nasty disposition. One without the other won’t hold.) So, my advice, Nick, is to look the world square in the eye and give it what it deserves, a very holy rendition of “Go straight to hell!”

  9. He’s Peron, Castro, Chavez (choose one) in a cassock. The quintessential Latino El Lider Maximo.

    Oh……and humble……very humble. And he’s proud of his humility, too. That’s why he flaunts it. That’s why he can’t simply follow in the footsteps of his predecessors and live in the papal apartments in the Vatican. No, he has to live in a special residence, the Casa Santa Marta to show us all how humble he is. OK, it’s a five star hotel but who cares about that, right?

    You got a problem wid dat, you rigid, neo-pelagian, pharisaical rosary counters?

    • You’re right, I’ve never noticed that till now that he really is proud of his ‘humbleness’. It’s almost an idol for him.

  10. “He said to him the third time, “Simon son of John, do you love me?” Peter felt hurt because he said to him the third time, “Do you love me?” And he said to him, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep. 18 Very truly, I tell you, when you were younger, you used to fasten your own belt and to go wherever you wished. But when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will fasten a belt around you and take you where you do not wish to go.” The Dubia is the belt, by which Francis will be led where he does not want to go. No longer will Francis be able to go wherever he wishes to go, using the tactics of ambiguity he has relied on throughout his career. Those who hired Francis to push an unholy agenda are realizing the mistake they made. Francis will be the cause through which the errors of Vatican II will finally be exposed and corrected. Do you love Him Francis? If you do, why aren’t you feeding His Sheep with clear teachings which do not contradict the unchanging teachings of the Church, why aren’t you feeding His Sheep with His Words instead of twisting those Words, why aren’t you feeding His Sheep by confirming the Sacraments instead of undermining them? The Dubia is the belt that will lead Francis to the clarification of what his words, thoughts and deed actually mean in light of the authentic understanding established by the Holy Spirit in the Church He guides with absolute clarity..

  11. Hi everyone – newbie here – can someone explain what prevents the bishops from calling a meeting or conference call to sort this out for His Holiness, followed by some type of clarification? Regardless of your opinion of his true objectives or what is in his heart, as a layman this kind of random management style just looks like incompetence.

    • Hi IWAL – Pope Francis is at the top of a hierarchy. It is his responsibility to sort this out. It isn’t necessarily a matter of incompetence, as much as it is a matter of engineered ambiguity from which the Pope can later claim, “Who am I to judge” when bishops throughout the Church implement their interpretation of his words. Altar Girls, Communion in the hand and lay communion ministers were a sort of trial run of how far disobedience could be pushed. It turns out the answer is pretty darn far. Now the issues are much more consequential, and in fact threaten to cause a schism in the Church, between those who have been emboldened to pursue radical disobedience opposing those who refuse to embrace such disobedience. Welcome.

    • The bishops are all over the map. They can’t agree on anything and there’s no unity in the Church. Calling a meeting to straighten out the Pope would be impossible.

      Most people are praying for the biological solution.

  12. All this discussion is much ado about nothing.

    The practice of distributing the Eucharist to people in “irregular” situations has been going on covertly for decades, especially in the West.

    Even the worst possible reading of Amoris Laetitia is simply an attempt to minimize and streamline this irregularity, as happened with communion in the hand, altar girls, and the use of the inclusive-language NRSV in Canada.

    A better reading, supported by Spanish, Canadian and some American bishops (inter alia) would that the document calls for pastoral counseling for such couples, followed (if they are resolved to at least try to live chastely) by Confession, and (after a period to test the veracity of such a resolve) readmission to the Eucharist. Note that the much-lamented footnote 351 says Sacraments, and the reference to Evangelii Gaudium alludes to both Confession and only then the Eucharist. Of course, if such a couple “slips up”, the process would have to be interrupted.

    A useful analogy is the treatment of an addict. If someone with alcoholism turns up at my hospital, I do expect him to commit to abstinence before I put him on a drug like Disulfiram, but experience and statistics tell me that he will slip up an average of four times before he finally quits alcohol for good – if, indeed, he does.

    Let he who has confessed, said the Act of Contrition and then never gone on to repeat his sin cast the first stone. =)

    “Let the wicked still act wickedly, and the filthy still be filthy. The righteous must still do right, and the holy still be holy.” – Revelation 22: 11

    • No, I don’t think it’s nothing. The situation you describe, i.e., a “remarried” couple who try to live chastely but fail at times, is not one that is a problem. It describes all of us who confess but then sin again.

      It’s the “remarried” couple who say “We’re not even going to try to live chastely, and we still want absolution and communion” that’s the problem. A change in Church teaching that allowed that would be a seismic break with millennia of teaching and practice. And as for it going on covertly for decades . . . people have been speeding since cars existed, but for the authorities to abolish speed limits would be a huge change.

  13. I read the mission of this blog, “To work together to restore the beauty, majesty, and glory of the Catholic Church as the principal force for good in a fallen world.”

    Apparently, your method of bringing the Church to her full beauty, majesty and glory is to denigrate the Vicar of Christ. Based on comments here, your method is leading others into scandalous gossip and judgement of every word and action of Pope Francis to the point where everything he does and says isn’t looked at for the purpose of learning to be a member of a unified Catholic family, but examined to see if it can be twisted against him to somehow prove he is worthy of scorn.

    I can’t imagine Jesus being pleased over any of it. I can’t imagine Him saying at heaven’s gate, “Great job smearing the pope I put in place to lead the Church for this chosen time.

    • Melchior Cano, Bishop and Theologian at the Council of Trent:

      “Peter has no need of our lies or flattery. Those who blindly and indiscriminately defend every decision of the Supreme Pontiff are the very ones who do most to undermine the authority of the Holy See—they destroy instead of strengthening its foundations”.

      • Saint Catherine of Siena, Doctor of the Church:
        “Even if the Pope were the Devil incarnate, we ought not to raise up our heads against him, but calmly lie down to rest on his bosom. He who rebels against our Father is condemned to death, for that which we do to him we do to Christ: we honor Christ if we honor the Pope; we dishonor Christ if we dishonor the Pope. I know very well that many defend themselves by boasting: ‘They are so corrupt, and work all manner of evil!’ But God has commanded that, even if the priests, the pastors, and Christ-on-earth were incarnate devils, we be obedient and subject to them, not for their sakes, but for the sake of God, and out of obedience to Him.”

        • Saints have often been wrong. They are human. I would posit she was using hyperbole. Nevertheless, to suggest that anyone obey and be subject to ‘incarnate devils’ goes against our Lord and His Scriptures. It is, in fact, evil.

          • Yes, but that doesn’t make your statement correct, either. Francis is a ravening wolf and the sheep need protection from him.

          • You said, “Francis is a ravening wolf,” and you’re advising me about correct statements…

          • That is correct, he is indeed a ravening wolf. He’s a heretic, a Destroyer, an anti-Pastor, a man of complex and deep wickedness. He’s not Catholic.

            He’s powerfully influenced by demonic forces if not under their direct control, his mind is filthy (e.g., his public reference to coprophagia).

            Did you notice that on his visit to Milan he did not kneel nor doff his zuchetto or adopt the slightest posture of reverence to the Eucharistic presence of our Lord?

        • So you’re saying you’d follow Lucifer in the flesh, i.e., a Pope under the perfect possession of Satan? You’d perform and cooperate in any evil he commanded, a willing slave of Satan? Because that’s what St. Cathy is saying here.

          • It’s a good thing Pope Francis is not possessed by Satan. This relieves me from the burden of worrying about it.

          • And you know this how? Because of his great fidelity to the Church’s millennia old teachings? Because he talks about eating shit in a public discourse?

            Did you like the shit-eating reference? Is this how Christ’s Vicar talks?

          • He said it because it’s true. If you deliberately follow false news simply because it fits your angry view of the world or fills your desire for nastiness, scandal and gossip, then it’s true. And by the way, he used the scientific term coprophagia and then excused himself for the expression while giving a warning of the dangers of always looking for scandal. He wasn’t so vulgar as the way you stated it.

          • Because it’s TRUE? Oh. My. Goodness. There’s truth in pornography, Candace, but we don’t use it to teach our children about sex, do we? (or do we? I don’t know, anything’s possible these days)

            We’re not getting anywhere, Candace, and since you’ve decided to go personal (i.e., my “angry view of the world” – dear me), let’s end our exchange. Have a good day.

          • I see anger when a person can deliberately choose to believe misrepresentations of the words of the Vicar of Christ for the purpose of fitting their own personal view, and even goes so far as to verbally attack our Holy Father by calling him names such as, “ravening wolf, destroyer, anti-pastor, a man of complex and deep wickedness, a heretic, his mind is filthy”, and yet at the same time that person takes offense at anyone who would criticize him. Double standard. And by the way, Pope Francis has said or done nothing that violates doctrine or earns him the invective, “heretic”. You’re right, and I was warned already by a good Catholic, it’s pointless to argue with the anti-Pope Francis people. They were right, it goes nowhere and clearly leads to more sin when Pope Francis is heaped with more vile insults for the sake of argument. This is my last comment to you.

    • I can’t imagine Him saying at heaven’s gate, “Great job smearing the pope I put in place to lead the Church for this chosen time.

      Candace, are you trying to argue—as so many Francis defenders have—that the Holy Ghost personally picks each pope and compels the cardinals in conclave to select His preferred candidate, to the point of taking away the cardinals’ free will? Because that is most definitely not how it works. Cardinals have elected terrible popes before, so unless you are trying to make the case that God Himself personally wanted men like Alexander VI on the Throne of St. Peter, rather than merely permitting the cardinals, of their own free will, to elect them, you may want to rethink your position.

    • “Apparently, your method of bringing the Church to her full beauty, majesty and glory is to denigrate the Vicar of Christ.”


      Rather, ” … denigrate the current holder of the office of Vicar of Christ for doing the opposite of what he should be doing as the Vicar of Christ”.

    • “your method is leading others into scandalous gossip and judgement of every word and action of Pope Francis to the point where everything he does and says isn’t looked at for the purpose of learning to be a member of a unified Catholic family, but examined to see if it can be twisted against him…”

      Candace Rose,

      I would strongly advise you to visit the Denzinger-Bergoglio website. It is unimpeachably factual, theologically sound and even has enlightening quotes from the saints. There is no ‘scandalous gossip’ or ‘twisting’ of the pope’s words, just verbatim quotes.

      WARNING: The website’s subtitle is ‘Surprising contributions by Francis to the Magisterium’ – that “surprising” is unfortunately very much a euphemism.

      Please, Candace Rose, take the red pill. It may taste bitter to begin with but once digested, you’ll be glad you took it and there’ll be no looking back.

      • Oh my goodness, I clicked on the Denzinger-Bergoglio site and was immediately struck with what a slam website this is on Pope Francis. How can you in any way call this factual and theologically sound? Amoris Laetitia, for example, does not violate one iota of Catholic doctrine, and yet the first article title I saw on your site was, “Amoris Laetitia versus the Church’s enduring Magisterium” complete with an uncharitable a photo of Pope Francis, deliberately meant to mock him. A second article title I saw them accusing Pope Francis of being untruthful, i.e. calling him a liar. You can’t be serious! You might be interested in this article where two popes wrote post-synodal apostolic exhortations on the family that have great similarity. Pope Benedict XVI also said similar things in his writings. Pope Francis might not fit your ideal of a pope, but that doesn’t make it right to slander and denigrate him.

        • I can understand your willingness to support Pope Francis and your unwillingness to countenance criticism of him but this pontificate is unlike any other and we’d just be guilty of cognitive dissonance if we viewed this pope as a worthy successor to Peter despite the overwhelming evidence (yes, evidence, not rumor, slander, denigration or silly pictures) to the contrary. There’s a Latin saying ‘Turpe Nescire’ which translates as ‘It is shameful not to know’. I encourage you to cut through the headlines and the superficial P.R. and assess the reality of the situation dispassionately. That ‘truth’ may, indeed WILL, be ugly but even truth of the ugly variety is beautiful.

          And Amoris Laetitia? Yes, it can be read as being in conformity with the Church’s Magisterium but it can ALSO EASILY be interpreted as opening the door to communion for the divorced and remarried. Exhibit A: Chapter 8 and Footnote 351. That, Candace Rose, is a confusion which does not emanate from the Holy Spirit.

          (Unfortunately, if all the evidence against Francis was to be listed, the alphabet would end up having to be used multiple times).

          • There should be no confusion with regard to Amoris Laetitia. Like Pope Benedict before him, Pope Francis is discussing especially a situation wherein someone got married for the sake of tradition – to get married in a church, and not for the genuine and sincere desire of a sincere sacramental marriage, and years down the road finds themselves divorced and remarried and having had a spiritual conversion where they realize how and why they are not in full communion with the Church, and have a desire to repair the situation. Pope Benedict speaks extensively about this. If there are no witnesses necessary for the annulment of the first marriage, (an annulment process can be called an External Forum), then the person has an opportunity to go through a process of Internal Forum, wherein they consult with a spiritual director for the purpose of examining all of the circumstances of their divorce in an honest way to see if, in all good and sincere conscience, the marriage was not valid. This follows the magisterium, and is what Pope Benedict and Pope Francis were talking about, and what Pope Francis refers to when he says in some special cases divorced/remarried people can receive communion.

          • “There should be no confusion with regard to Amoris Laetitia.”

            Well Amen to that, Sister! But we all know that there is, so instead of the unprecedented pastoral gymnastics, if only Pope Francis would answer those five little dubia…oh well…

          • Those who are outspoken against Pope Francis and claiming to be “confused” by Amoris Laetitia are being disingenuous. These are the same ones who have been criticizing him all along. Amoris Laetitia simply gave them more fodder for their denigrations of the Vicar of Christ. I don’t know why he didn’t give a “yes” or “no” to the Dubia, but I can try to imagine myself in his position. As he tries to draw back to the Church those who feel they are disenfranchised outsiders, he is teaching (Through Amoris Laetitia) how to pastor them gently and lovingly into reintegration into the life of the Church. The legalists simply want to know, “Communion or not???” and nothing else. They’re completely ignoring eight beautiful chapters (have you read it? It’s beautiful!) to focus on one they can use to bash Pope Francis. But if he answers that with the truth, that communion for divorced can’t happen without an annulment, then his legalistic detractors will slam the book on the beautiful Amoris Laetitia and move on to their next criticism. In other words, Amoris Laetitia will be another post synodal apostolic exhortation that will go virtually ignored by those who, for obvious reasons right now, seem to “care” so much what’s in it. Did anyone care about the post-synodal apostolic exhortations by Pope Benedict XVI when he said the same things as Pope Francis? No. Why? Because he’s not Pope Francis.

  14. In a new collection of interviews, Pope emeritus Benedict XVI expressed his joy with the pontificate of Pope Francis. This is in direct contradiction to many outspoken Catholics who have decided for themselves that Pope Benedict XVI must be very unhappy with Pope Francis. Pope emeritus Benedict also puts to rest the conspiracy theories that he was forced against his will to retire. Read some of Pope Benedict’s quotes:

    • I’ve never believed that B16 was “very unhappy with Pope Francis.” I think the man simply checked out, if you will, from his ecclesial and divine responsibilities. In a word, he quit. A quitter. And you now value his perspective? I don’t.


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