Monday, March 12, 2018

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI Defends Pope Francis

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI has defended Pope Francis from attacks from those who call themselves "Traditionalists" or "conservative Catholics." In a letter to Monsignor Dario Vigano who is the prefect of the Secretariate from Communications, the pope emeritus described the criticism of Pope Francis as "foolish/stupid prejudice" from those who see Pope Francis as "just a practical man without particular theological or philosophical formation."

It is interesting to note that the pope emeritus criticized himself by writing, "while I have been only a theorist of theology with little understanding of the concrete life of a Christian today."

The pope emeritus wrote the letter in regards to 11 short books on The Theology of Pope Francis. The letter was translated here by NCRegister Journalist, Edward Pentin:

***
Rev, Mons. Dario Edoardo ViganĂ²
Prefect, Secretariat for Communication

Vatican City


February 9, 2018



Rev. Monsignor;

Thank you for your kind letter of 12 January and the attached gift of the eleven small volumes edited by Roberto Repole.

I applaud this initiative that wants to oppose and react to the foolish prejudice in which Pope Francis is just a practical man without particular theological or philosophical formation, while I have been only a theorist of theology with little understanding of the concrete life of a Christian today.

The small volumes show, rightly, that Pope Francis is a man of profound philosophical and theological formation, and they therefore help to see the inner continuity between the two pontificates, despite all the differences of style and temperament.

However, I don’t feel like writing a short and dense theological passage on them because throughout my life it has always been clear that I would write and express myself only on books I had read really well. Unfortunately, if only for physical reasons, I am unable to read the eleven volumes in the near future, especially as other commitments await me that I have already made.

I am sure you will understand and cordially greet you.



Yours,

Benedict XVI

***



This letter by pope emeritus is significant in that he criticizes the discontent, slander and even hate which has been propagated by those who call themselves "traditionalists" or "conservative Catholics." Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI has been seen as a leader and staunch defender of external traditions among the aforementioned.  The letter comes as a shock to those who feel Pope Benedict was a better pope than Pope Francis.

On social media, one can spot these Catholics by the way they attack Pope Francis or refuse to honor his title. They call him Bergoglio or simply Francis in an attempt to avoid calling him Pope or acknowledge him as the successor of Peter. Some have even made themselves part of the College of Cardinals by calling the pope a "heretic." Lay people have no such authority.  So-called "Father Z," a rogue diocesan priest who blogs for a living even endorsed praying for Pope Francis' death.  An anonymous author even wrote a libelous book entitled "Dictator Pope."  The hate for Pope Francis is real and is unhealthy both psychologically and spiritually.  

Pope Benedict XVI has confirmed in his letter that there is no disconnect between both pontificates despite "differences in style and temperament."  We see in the letter that the pope emeritus does not see the current pope as a heretic of a dissident.  If Pope Francis was truly a heretic or dissident to the faith, I doubt Pope Benedict XVI would have said that his pontificate and that of Pope Francis are linked in inner or interior continuity.  That would have tarnished his own papacy.

The news of this letter comes as a recent survey was released showing that American Catholics who identify as "conservative" are not fond of Pope Francis and are concerned that he is changing Church teachings. These claims are based on a poor understanding of Church documents, how the Church works and paranoia. In reality, pastoral practice is what is evolving not doctrine.

I am glad that Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI has made this statement and has classified the criticism against Pope Francis as "stupid or foolish prejudice."  This is exactly what it is. Some people simply do not like Pope Francis. They remind me of the Pharisees who hated Jesus for presenting God in a more merciful manner instead of like a cold mechanical religious concept.

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI has shown that he is a class act, a true pastor. I disagree with his self-deprecation.  He truly does understand the Christian life today and how to be a pastor. His book "Introduction to Christianity" was very instrumental in my conversion from atheism.  We see how this man is truly a humble man despite attacks from liberals who criticized him for his deference for Liturgy and Liturgical regalia.

This site www.Sacerdotus.com and its media content will always be loyal and supportive of both Pope Benedict XVI and Pope Francis.

Update March 14, 2018:

According to the AP (https://apnews.com/amp/01983501d40d47a4aa7a32b6afb70661), the Vatican doctored the photo of the letter by blurring the lines that stated that Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI did not read the 11 books.  Some are already crying conspiracy over this. However, I have found nothing directly from the Vatican making such a statement.  Ironically the source was made by: "A Vatican spokesman, speaking on condition of anonymity."  I think we can pretty much dismiss this story from the AP.



Source:

http://www.ncregister.com/daily-news/benedict-xvi-there-is-interior-continuity-between-the-two-pontificates

http://www.ncregister.com/blog/edward-pentin/full-text-of-benedict-xvis-letter-to-mons.-vigano

https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/benedict-xvi-says-there-is-interior-continuity-between-himself-and-pope-francis-49971?platform=hootsuite

https://www.americamagazine.org/faith/2018/03/12/benedict-xvi-defends-pope-francis-fifth-anniversary-his-election

https://www.americamagazine.org/faith/2018/03/12/benedict-xvi-defends-pope-francis-fifth-anniversary-his-election

www.ncregister.com/blog/edward-pentin/full-text-of-benedict-xvis-letter-to-mons.-vigano

http://magister.blogautore.espresso.repubblica.it/

https://www.cnn.com/2018/03/13/world/pope-francis-at-five-years-bill-weir/index.html

https://www.usnews.com/news/national-news/articles/2018-03-13/despite-conservative-opposition-pope-francis-maintains-his-popularity

http://www.dw.com/en/pope-francis-the-catholic-churchs-superman/a-42937351

https://www.cnn.com/2018/03/06/us/pope-pew-survey/index.html

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-pope-anniversary/on-anniversary-popes-predecessor-hits-out-at-conservatives-stupid-prejudice-idUSKCN1GP1PI

http://catholicherald.co.uk/news/2018/03/12/benedict-xvi-foolish-prejudice-to-think-pope-francis-lacks-formation/?platform=hootsuite

https://cnstopstories.com/2018/03/12/retired-pope-says-criticism-against-pope-francis-is-foolish-prejudice/

https://www.wsj.com/articles/pope-benedict-protects-pope-francis-right-flank-1520960271

https://cruxnow.com/vatican/2018/03/12/pope-benedict-rejects-foolish-prejudice-rupture-francis/




10 comments:

  1. Father Z did not endorse praying for Pope Francis' death. Please prove that. Otherwise you have lost all credibility.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Where have you been Bro. John-Paul Ignatius Mary? This was big news in February, see: http://www.sacerdotus.com/2018/02/father-z-not-sinful-to-pray-for-popes.html

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    2. An Article from Sacerdotus spewing innuendo, which is a sin, by the way, is not proof of your accusations. You need to provide the source material behind that article that corroborates the allegations. Otherwise, this is the grave sin of rash judgment.

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    3. Hardly innuendo if Father Z himself had to address his comment and poor use of words as he himself admitted. I think you are blinded by your subscription to Father Z's fandom, which is idolatry. The article shows several sources. Either you did not read it or you are just seeking attention. Are you really a Catholic brother? Your comment shows a lack of knowledge of the catechism.

      Delete
    4. The tone and demeanor of your post reveals the tendency to commit rash judgment and hyperbolic interpretations.

      Father was not "endorsing" a prayer for the Pope's death. Such characterization is that of tabloids. The whole bit about a rogue priest is actually a libel. (See http://www.madisondiocese.org/people/rev-john-t-zuhlsdorf)

      And no, I am not a some sort of blinded fan. I have rarely been on his site. I am a fan of truth, and not a fan of calumny, rash judgment, detraction and tabloid-style characterizations.

      He explains:
      http://wdtprs.com/blog/2017/02/wherein-fr-z-apologizes-and-explains-a-response-to-a-readers-question/

      This interview did not make any such statements:
      https://www.americamagazine.org/content/all-things/catholic-blogosphere-qa-father-john-zuhlsdorf

      As for me, I have a doctorate in Catholic doctrine and have taught the Catholic faith for the past 25 years. I have written the equivalent of 9 volumes of material answering questions from the public. Again, rash judgment is a sin. Take care.

      http://oswc.org/stmike/qa/default.asp

      I have tried to conduct a civil conversation here.

      Delete
    5. Ironically, your comment engages in what you accuse me of doing: rash judgement and hyperbolic interpretations. My post simply shares the news regarding Father Z's gaffe and genuine concern over his intentions online with gullible Catholics. Father clearly endorsed praying for evil or a negative to befall on the pope or anyone. This was why he was forced to explain his words after MANY complained. You seem to ignore this fact. It is not only the Buzzfeed jouranlist and myself who had issue, many others did as well. Moreover, the link you posted simply states that Father is in charge of a Liturgical society, not that he actually works as a parish priest. This does not negate the fact that he is incardinated in Italy. You claim to be a fan of the truth but reject it when presented. My post quotes Father's own words. A tabloid makes things up without evidence. I quoted Father, the Buzzfeed article and other sources and gave my opinion as to why Catholics should be careful. This is not rash judgment, calumny, detraction or tabloid. It is simply reporting the facts and providing criticism. Lastly, thank you for sharing a bit about your work. I questioned your Catholicity due to your statements and the fact that my site has been visited by trolls pretending to be Catholic and Atheist. They have come only to disrupt. If you read on my page, comments must be about the post. You never wrote anything about the article regarding the pope emeritus' letter. I found this a bit odd and "tested the spirits," so to speak. I did not mean any offense if you felt offended or felt this was uncivil. Let me be clear, I do not hate or dislike Father Z. I know my criticism may give that impression. What I am doing is just voicing concern over this blogger-priest. Several years ago, I ran into an account on Twitter run by a man who called himself "brother" and even wore a habit. He turned out to be a fraud; unaffiliated with any order. I invite you to please reread my post on Father Z and praying for the pope's death/end of pontificate carefully. You will see my intention is to warn readers by clarifying that Father's answer was not charitable and that he has been on the radar of many others. Not once did I write to avoid him and even stated that he has a lot of good content. Do not let our little hiccup discourage you from visiting and commenting here. You are always welcome. God bless + Mary keep!

      Delete
    6. Well, perhaps you are not aware of it, but the tone and the way you speak and especially the way you respond to comments and defend your view is exactly the way that the progressive mind and similar fellows do it, for lack of a better description. Or a better description, you argue in a manner almost identical to the way Protestants argue with Catholics, and I am not kidding.

      I do not have the time nor the energy to outline this for you, but I have seen this style of thinking and responding literally more than a thousand times over the last 37 years that I have been on what today is called social networking. I go back to 1981 when online discussions were only between universities, laboratories, government, and military.

      It is not a productive way to converse. St. Paul tells us to bow out of unproductive conversation, so I shall do that.

      God Bless.

      Delete
    7. I am aware of everything. What you state is somewhat true. I was taught in progressive and secular schools most of my life, so I do think forward. Interestingly enough, I have found that those who are cradle religious often think in a regressive manner from which they resort to their cognitive bias for assistance when questioned. This then turns into a reliance on confirmation bias where they will only accept what agrees with them. Afterwards, they become defensive. I would be happy to explain this all to you. I do have degrees in psychology and biology and know of the evolution of the human body and mind. Understanding how the mind works will help you evangelize and better converse with others. This is why I am able to attract so many. Instead of going to them, they come to me. It is a blessing in disguise. Also, if interested, you are welcomed to blog at my other site CatholicFaithSharing.blogspot.com You can write there or repost whatever articles you already have and link to the original so you can generate traffic. God bless + Mary keep!

      Delete
    8. No need. I have been in the mental health field for some 45 years or so. I am aware of how the brain works and the human mind.

      I would say that for your training, I do not think you have utilized it very well to "evangelize and better converse with others". As I said, your responses are nearly identical to the kind of logic and style as that of a fundamentalist Protestant. As I use to be one of those I have intimate knowledge of that style and can recognize it instantly.

      I understand the mindset of those you call cradle religious. It is true that many of them resort of their cognitive bias. I have found that the group that does that the most, over all others, are the so-called "new atheists and liberals/progressives." Anyone can be subject to this.

      I have spent my entire life in apologetics, teaching, evangelization, and pastoral and psychological counseling. I am not a neophyte here.

      I do not think with the cognitive bias of "forward." I think upward.

      Delete
    9. Working in the mental health field and actually practicing it as a science is no synonymous. I did the latter. Moreover, I do not understand how you can pretend to know how I evangelize and my success rate. So far, I have 28 atheist conversions under my belt, so to speak. I also have brought many back to the faith who have fallen away, including those who joined other faiths. This Easter, I will be sponsor to 5 atheists who will be joining the Catholic Church due to my efforts. Again, I do not understand how you can equate my work with that of a fundamentalist Protestant. Was it not you who blinded yourself to the facts and sided with Father Z? This sounds like a fundamentalist tactic by those who will defend and excuse others despite evidence showing such a defense is unwarranted. It reminds me of some people who have attacked me for revealing that John Corapi was not returning to the priesthood after posting his LinkedIn profile. Some people get blinded by fandom, as I stated before. This is fundamentalism, not what I do. I think freely, question and do not give anyone a free pass just for the sake of their assumed celebrity. Thinking upward may be a sign of pride. When we look up, we cannot see obstacles before us and may step in mud or some other substance. It is wiser to look forward with wisdom. I say as Philippians 3:13 states:

      Brothers, I, for my part, do not think of myself as having yet gotten hold of it; but one thing I do: forgetting what is behind me and straining forward toward what lies ahead...



      Delete

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