Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Cardinal Sarah Defends Pope Francis

It is not news that so-called "traditionalists" hate Pope Francis. Some have even prayed for his death and tried to justify it, theologically speaking. The pastoral take on the papacy which Pope Francis has introduced has rubbed them the wrong way.

Despite Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI showing approval of Pope Francis' changes, these Catholics still show hate. Some have even tried to use Cardinal Burke and Cardinal Sarah as support for their anti-Francis movement.

Well, Cardinal Sarah made them look really foolish with recent statements he made which were publish. He said these during an interview published Oct. 7 in Corriere della Sera, an Italian daily paper:

"Every Pope is 'right' for his time. Providence understand us very well, you know? Even with the obvious differences in sensibilities, there is a great harmony and great continuity between Francis and Benedict XVI."
“The truth is that the Church is represented on earth by the vicar of Christ, that is by the pope. And whoever is against the pope is, ipso facto, outside the Church,”
“The truth is that many people write not to give witness to the truth, but to place people against one another, to damage human relationships,” he said. “The truth doesn’t matter to them.”
“Those who place me in opposition to the Holy Father cannot present a single word of mine, a single phrase or a single attitude of mine to support their absurd - and I would say, diabolical - affirmations,” Sarah said. “The devil divides, sets people against each other.”

On those Catholics attacking the pope, Sarah said,

“are quick to hurl anathemas at those who do not follow their line of thought,”
“The history of the Church is beautiful, and reducing it to a political battle typical of a television talk show is a marketing ploy, not a search for truth.”
"Those who place me in opposition to the Holy Father cannot present a single word of mine, a single phrase or a single attitude of mine to support their absurd – and I would say, diabolical – affirmations, the devil divides, sets people against each other."

The statements have left many so-called "traditionalists" besmirched and dumbfounded, including Dr. Taylor Marshal who was left at a loss for words and simply asked his followers for their thoughts on Twitter. Here we have Cardinal Sarah defending Pope Francis and even calling those who oppose the pope as originating from the devil himself. Those are powerful words!

I made similar comments last week on Catholic blogger @CatholicLisa's Facebook page when she posted something that brought in many anti-Francis comments. Like Cardinal Sarah, I made it clear that God allows a particular pope to reign during a particular period in time. We may not understand why and it is not our place to do so. We are creatures of the Creator. He created the Church on Peter and directs her in the way He wants. We have no say in it nor should we even dare to. This is part of being humble and obedience. It is also a part of honoring those in authority, in this case the pope who is our shepherd and father or papa (see: Calling the pope a heretic or anti-pope is beyond the scope of the laity, religious or even priests and bishops. It is shameful to see even priests abusing their authority to make such statements or insinuations online. Thankfully not all laity do this.

Canon law says:

Can. 751 Heresy is the obstinate denial or doubt, after baptism, of a truth which must be believed by divine and catholic faith. Apostasy is the total repudiation of the christian faith. Schism is the withdrawal of submission to the Supreme Pontiff or from communion with the members of the Church subject to him.

Can. 752 While the assent of faith is not required, a religious submission of intellect and will is to be given to any doctrine which either the Supreme Pontiff or the College of Bishops, exercising their authentic magisterium, declare upon a matter of faith or morals, even though they do not intend to proclaim that doctrine by definitive act. Christ's faithful are therefore to ensure that they avoid whatever does not accord with that doctrine.

Can. 754 All Christ's faithful are obliged to observe the constitutions and decrees which lawful ecclesiastical authority issues for the purpose of proposing doctrine or of proscribing erroneous opinions; this is particularly the case of those published by the Roman Pontiff or by the College of Bishops.

Can. 1370 §1 A person who uses physical force against the Roman Pontiff incurs a latae sententiae excommunication reserved to the Apostolic See; if the offender is a cleric, another penalty, not excluding dismissal from the clerical state, may be added according to the gravity of the crime.

The office of the Papacy must be respected by all Catholics, ordained, lay or religious. This is a must if one considers him or herself a Catholic. It is find to disagree with a pope when the pope speaks on something that is not faith or morals related. However, it is not fine to attack him for being pastoral or proclaiming the faith. It is not up to the laity or anyone else to monitor the pope's words and declare them heretical.

Here is some reaction from Catholic Twitter users:

Cardinal Sarah tweeted support for Pope Francis and even for the Amazon Synod which has met contention from so-called "traditionalists" online. This is a sharp contrast of what they often presented Cardinal Sarah as being in regards to his relationship with the Roman Pontiff.

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