When Cardinals don't understand the Bible

Leaving aside the arguments about reduced culpability for a moment, I would like to post, for the record, some of my more fundamental concerns regarding the Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia.

Reading this document was, I found, not like reading anything else promulgated by the Church, and I have read a lot of Church documents!

Even a perfunctory reading left me feeling uneasy with simple and obvious errors contained therein, it felt like it was a different faith!

As I cited in this post, the Professor who taught me Moral Theology has pointed out some of these glaring and obvious errors with respect to the misrepresentation of Magisterial texts:
Magisterial texts in AL are distorted when quoted selectively or ignored almost completely. Repeatedly presenting conscience as the sanctuary where man finds himself alone with God (Gaudium et spes, 16) suggests it is only a private matter between the individual and God, while references to invincible ignorance and to other factors reducing…

From Christian to Atheist & Back Again.

My attention was drawn today to this rather stunning piece on Atheism & conversion in The New Statesman which you can read for yourself here.

Its author is A. N. Wilson, an English writer and newspaper columnist, known for his critical biographies, novels, works of popular history.

In the early 1990s, Wilson stated publicly that he was an Atheist and published a pamphlet Against Religion in the Chatto & Windus CounterBlasts series; however, religious and ecclesiological themes continue to inform his work. He claims to have lost his Christian beliefs while working on his 1990 biography of C.S. Lewis. For nearly 20 years he continued to be both a sceptic, and a prominent atheist. It was during his period of nonbelief that he wrote biographies of Jesus, St. Paul, and a history of atheism in the 19th century entitled God's Funeral, the latter describing the growth of atheism as due to combination of many influences ranging from David Hume to Sigmund Freud. These and many othe…

Why Papal Silence Might not be a Bad Thing

Lots of people think that in the name of truth and with the mission of clarity in proclaiming that truth which is an essential facet of the papacy, Pope Francis should answer the Cardinal's dubia about Amoris Laetitia. Pope Francis is after all the final and magisterial arbiter of doctrinal contention. It would be very powerful if he answered them by reaffirming the teaching of Christ.

However, in this recent post, Dom Hugh argues that the papal silence in this regard, especially if it is true that Pope Francis thinks this teaching should be changed (and that is still a big if at the moment), might not be such a bad thing after all!

In defence of this position he quotes Sheed:
Infallibility means that the Pope cannot (in the appropriate circumstances) give the wrong answer—the Holy Spirit will not let him. That leaves him with two possibilities as against our three—he can give the right answer, or no answer. What decides? Whether he knows: infallibility does not in itself mean ins…

Architectural News from Norcia

Some rather depressing news from Dr. Robert Moynihan, who, in his latest letter reports news from the Monks of Norcia / Monaci di Norcia:

"They told me that the archbishop of Spoleto, Renato Boccardo, age 64 -- who has jurisdiction over Norcia -- has decided that he will rebuild the Basilica of St. Benedict in a modern style of architecture. He will also take possession of the quarters where the monks had been living from the year 2000 until October 2016. He will use the quarters as a part-time episcopal residence.

"So the Benedictine monks of Father Cassian will not return to the center of Norcia, to the spot where St. Benedict and his twin sister St. Scholastica were born. That period of the monastery's life is over now, it seems. The monastery will now be built on the hillside above the city, about two miles outside of the city walls."

Evangelisation is not a Protestant thing

Evangelisation is not a Protestant thing, but part of our task as Christians.

The Twelve Apostles of Mexico were twelve hand-picked Franciscan friars who arrived in New Spain in 1524 and become known for their extraordinary dedication and self-sacrificing labors. The local Indians said of the twelve Franciscans after some years
"Because they were poor and barefoot, as we are, they eat what we eat, they sit on the ground as we do, they converse in humility with us, they love us as their children, we love and seek them as fathers." It was estimated that 11 years later, they had baptised 5 million new Mexican Christians!!!!

This drawing of the friars is from the wall of a early colonial (1535) Franciscan monastery just outside Puebla, Mexico.

Forgiveness: Muslims Moved as Coptic Christians Do the Unimaginable

Image: Mohamed Abd El Ghany / Reuters Coptic Christians gather outside Tanta's Mar Girgis Church after bomb disrupts Palm Sunday service.
This is an interesting post about the Coptic response to ISIS attacks in Egypt and the effect it is having on society there:

Martrydom and forgiveness is fuelling curiosity among Muslims and repentance and revival of faith among Copts in Egypt.

...But even in death, the Copts forgive.
"For example, the night of the bombings, Orthodox priest Boules George said he thanks and loves those who did this crime. Speaking to a congregation in Cairo’s Cleopatra neighborhood, his words were broadcast on the popular Coptic TV station Aghaby.
“I long to talk to you about our Christ, and tell you how wonderful he is,” said George, addressing the terrorists. But then turning to the church, he said, “How about we make a commitment today to pray for them?
“If they know that God is love and experience his love, they could not do these things—never, never, never.” S…

The Anatomy of Discipleship

In this post, Ann Yeong who blogs at sets out to analyse how we become an effective Evangelist. I think she succeeds in describing the anatomy of discipleship. It is not through our efforts, but by the power of the Holy Spirit, that anyone finds God. But we should be aware that everyone is seeking God, whether they are aware of it or not, and the conduit for their discovery is the way they see Christ reflected in us and our lives.

For this reason we need to be aware at all times how we live out our faith aware that Christianity is not austere and burdensome, but life giving and fulfilling!

Ann's post provide a valuable route map that provides useful reminders of our focus on the interior life; that is, the call to personal holiness. We have to be working on changing ourselves as I have posted before. We need a sense of progress and development in our lives. We need joy and peace to flow into our society. I'm not talking about material things, but rather spiritual …