Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Wishing You A Blessed Thanksgiving


Jeremiah 30:19
From them will come songs of thanksgiving
and the sound of rejoicing.
I will add to their numbers,
and they will not be decreased;
I will bring them honour,
and they will not be disdained.


Prayers of Thanksgiving

Since not a moment passes in life in which we do not experience the goodness of God, we owe Him gratitude. Saint Paul instructs us: "In all things give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus regarding you all" (1 Thess. 5:18). Not only should we thank God for the particular benefits received each day, but we should also give thanks for our creation, for our redemption, and for the gift of faith.

Father in Heaven, Creator of all and source of all goodness and love, please look kindly upon us and receive our heartfelt gratitude in this time of giving thanks.

Thank you for all the graces and blessings. You have betowed upon us, spiritual and temporal: our faith and religious heritage. Our food and shelter, our health, the loves we have for one another, our family and friends.

Dear Father, in Your infinite generosity, please grant us continued graces and blessing throughout the coming year.

This we ask in the Name of Jesus, Your Son and our Brother. Amen.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Dr. Cretella on Transgenderism: A Mental Illness Is Not a Civil Right










John Ritchie (TFP): Could you please give us a little background on your professional training and your position in the American College of Pediatricians?

Dr. Michelle Cretella, MD:  Yes, certainly.  I received my medical degree from the University of Connecticut and completed my internship and residency in pediatrics at the Connecticut Children's Medical Center.  I did some additional training in adolescence at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Virginia, and had the privilege to practice general pediatrics for fifteen years before going on full-time with the American College of Pediatricians in advocacy for children. I am entering my second term as president with that organization.
John Ritchie:  You've stated that the transgender ideology is responsible for large-scale child abuse. Could you please explain why you call it child abuse?
Dr. Cretella:  Essentially, transgender ideology holds that people can be born into the wrong body: It's simply not true.  We can demonstrate this by looking at twin studies. No one is born in the wrong body. So to take that lie and essentially indoctrinate all of our children from preschool forward with that lie, we are destroying their ability for reality testing.
This is cognitive and psychological abuse.  I want to say just a little more about that.  The reason it destroys reality testing is because most children at age three (pre-school age) can correctly identify themselves by saying "I am a boy" or "I am a girl" and most children will not understand that a boy grows into a man and stays a man and that a girl grows into a woman and stays a woman. So when many seven-year-olds see a man get into a dress and put on makeup, they may believe that he just became a woman. The other side is not being honest and not acknowledging that.
This happened most recently in Rocklin, California.  It was the end of the kindergarten school year and the teacher called the whole class together, at the behest of the boy's parents, and had the children sit down and she read them two stories. I will call them "gender bending stories." One was The Red Crayon in which you have a crayon that's actually blue wrapped in red paper. That primes the kids to think, "Oh, what's on the outside doesn't have to match the inside."
The next story the teacher read was I Am Jazz, which is about a boy whose parents helped him impersonate a girl from the age of three.  He's 17 now, has his own television program and looks like a girl from the waist up.  After these two stories were finished, a boy (I'll call him Joey) left the classroom, presumably to use the bathroom and came back in a dress. The teacher said: "Boys and girls, Joey is actually a girl just like Jazz.  From now on we need to call her Josephine" (again I'm making the names up). This was very confusing to the other children in kindergarten and it terrified one girl in particular, which was clear from something that happened when she was home with her mother. Her mom had wrapped her up after she had go out of the tub and she was going by the mirror when she saw her hair slicked back. Then, she burst into tears, saying, "Mommy, am I turning into a boy? I don't wanna turn into a boy! Joey turned into a girl, am I gonna turn into a boy?"
Now, I know this because the mother called me. As the president of the College of Pediatricians I've been outspoken and parents reach out to me. This mother is being told that she is the one who's crazy and that her daughter is the one who's having a problematic reaction.
So transgender ideology -- yes, it's child abuse because we are gaslighting our children. And now that they're thoroughly confused they will think that they really are the opposite sex and will be sent down a medical pathway.  As they approach puberty, they will be put on puberty blockers and then on cross-sex hormones.  That combination will permanently sterilize most, if not all, of those children and also puts them at risk for heart disease, diabetes, and various cancers. If girls have been on testosterone, which is their sex change hormone, for a full-year, by age 16 they can get a double mastectomy.
So, gaslighting, pubertal castration and surgical mutilation: It's institutionalized child abuse.
To make matters worse you must realize that prior to transgender ideology, these children were treated with watchful waiting, because for many kids it may be a passing phase. Sometimes the girls may just be tomboys.  So with either watchful waiting or family and individual therapy the vast majority, 75-95% of kids, would accept their biological sex by young adulthood. This is child abuse!
If the parents find that their child is questioning their sex, if things on your own at home are not going well, I encourage all parents to seek out a local therapist who will work with them to find underlying family dynamics or conflicts. If the only therapist you find locally says, "You must accept them as transgender," you can reach out to us at bestforchildren.org, that's our website. We can recommend some therapists who will work with families. If they're not in the local area, they can even do it by Skype.
John Ritchie: College students are pressured more and more to let go of reality, accept the transgender narrative and even use transgender pronouns. If you were in medical school today, how would you respond to that pressure?
Dr. Cretella:  (Laughs.) That's a good question. I would hope that I would cling to reality and sound reason. Words matter... biology is reality, not bigotry.

We're at a point now in which we have documented at least 6,500 genetic differences between men and women. Men and women cannot be treated the same in medicine. Because of these genetic differences women are more prone to autoimmune diseases than men are. We must approach our patients in accordance with their biology, not in accordance with their perceptions which are delusional.
I hope I would be able to respond in that fashion, but it would be very difficult because just as we are seeing this tyrannical enforcement of newspeak on our college campuses, it is the same within the highest levels of medicine. At our office at the American College of Pediatricians, I receive e-mails and phone calls even from physicians and therapist, psychologists on the left who are clearly against us because we're pro-life, and they're even LGB[T] affirming, but they will thank me for speaking out because they say, "We wish we could, but we can't because we'll lose our jobs. We'll get death threats."
I receive emails from concerned parents throughout the nation asking me to review health curricula because it has now become "transphobic" to teach middle school students that women have ovaries and men have testes. That's transphobic!
I have not received any death threats.  I have been accused of being the "leader of the skinheads of pediatricians" and a lot of other things that you wouldn't repeat in polite company. One of my greatest fans who goes by the name of "Slowly Boiled Frog" has decided that I'm not even licensed to be a doctor. He or she writes to imply that I'm some sort of charlatan, or maybe that I did something illegal. So for the record:  Yes, I still am licensed.  I've chosen not to do clinical practice because I believe advocacy requires a full-time commitment.
John Ritchie: Can a person ever be "trapped in the wrong body"?  What does science tell us about this?
Dr. Cretella:  The argument, if you can even call it that -- I'll just call it a claim -- the claim by the activist physicians on the other side is that when a child persistently and consistently insists that he (I'll use he for ease of example) is really a girl, well then that's it -- that's how you diagnose transgender.  That is proof that they have the brain of the opposite sex in their body. They say, "We have proof, we have studies that prove changes or differences between adult transgender brains and the brains of their biological peers who are not transgender."
Okay, so let's unpack that:
#1. The definition of a delusion is a fixed false belief. So if I persistently and consistently insist that I am Margaret Thatcher, or persistently consistently insist that I am a cat, or that I am an amputee trapped in a normal body -- I am delusional.  In fact, there are people who believe they're amputees trapped in a normal body and they are appropriately diagnosed as having Body Identity Integrity Disorder, a mouthful, but you get my drift. So if you want to cut off an arm or a leg you're mentally ill, but if you want to cut off healthy breasts and genitals then you are transgender and you don't have a mental illness. That's completely unscientific. That's no diagnosis.
#2.  Let's talk about the brain studies.  There have been several.  Many have found no brain differences, but "we don't talk about those." There are a few that have found some differences on what's called functional MRIs and they prove nothing. The reason they prove nothing is because the brain changes due to behavior. We have documented in numerous studies that behavior changes the appearance, the physiology and function of the brain.  So to have a few studies that are very small, have never been replicated, say, "Hey, there are brain differences."  More than likely, the fact that the person has lived transgender is what caused those differences, if they're even real.
You may ask, "So how do we know, Dr. Cretella, that what you said, that no one's ever born this way, is true?  How do we know that?" If a brain were somehow the wrong sex, due to factors before birth, every single identical twin would have the same gender identity all the time, but they don't.
Why? Identical twins have identical DNA.  So if it were in the genes and solely in the genetic DNA, then 100% of the time they would both be transgender or both be non-transgender. The best twin study we have shows that the vast majority do not match. If you have one identical twin who's [considered] transgender, 72% of the time the other twin is normal. That tells us that it's post-birth effects that primarily impact your identity -- post-birth effects, not pre-birth.
John Ritchie:  If I told you that my Ford was really a Ferrari, you'd question my mental sanity. So why do some medical doctors validate the idea that a man can become a woman.
Dr. Cretella:  Ideology. Really, it comes down to an ideology and worldview. I mean, it's been that way since the beginning.
Gender as a term, prior to the 1950s:
#1. Did not refer to people;
#2. Was not in the medical literature.
Sexologists were PhDs and MDs in the 50s who were taking people who believed they were transsexuals (the term was transsexual at the time), mostly men who wanted to be women, and basically invented the so-called "sex reassignment surgery." Amongst themselves in the 50s, they said, "What are we treating? How are we going to justify this?" because they knew full well even then that sex is in the DNA and that mutilating the body does not change a person's sex. They basically looked at the word gender, which meant male and female referring to grammar.
So in the 1950s, one of the sexologists at the time was Dr. John Money. And they said, "We're gonna take gender and say that for people it means "the social expression of an internal sex identity." That's what we're treating. They pulled it out of the air to justify lining their pockets to do mutilating surgeries. And this is the very same definition that the activists are using.  It has no basis in reality.
John Ritchie: So what you're saying is that even radical surgery cannot change a man into a woman?
Dr. Cretella:  Right, radical surgery... no. NO surgery will change the DNA which is imprinted in every single cell of the body. Again, this is a combination of reason and science.  They meld.  They go together.

Human sexuality is binary, okay.  We know this because in nature, reproduction is the rule and human beings engage in sexual reproduction. You need a man and a woman to do that.
Chromosomes: women are XX, those are the sex chromosomes.  Women have two Xs and men have an X and a Y. Those are genetic markers, they are genetic markers for female and male respectively -- binary.  That's the rule and it's self-evident.  Biological exceptions to the rule do not invalidate the rule, and by that I am referring to intersex conditions. We live in an imperfect world.  We live in a world with disease and disorder.
There are a variety of very rare biological genetic disorders that result in disorders of sex development.  These individuals have a true physiological, genetic, biological problem,  so it may be appropriate within those cases to give them surgery or they may need hormones.  But that's a case-by-case basis and they are the exception, not the rule. Why do we refer to them colloquially as intersex? Because they are between the norms.
Many people with intersex conditions can lead very happy and healthy lives, but their treatment is very personalized. Someone who identifies as transgender, however -- that's not a problem in their body. Gender identity... all identities are in our thoughts and feelings. Those are not hardwired, they develop and they may be factually wrong or factually correct.  Individuals with disorders of sex development are being used as pawns in the fight for basically a civil right to a mental illness.  There's no such thing as a civil right to a mental illness, but that is in fact what we are dealing with in the transgender rights movement.
John Ritchie:  Now a lot of liberal professors claim that the male-female binary is only a social construct, that you grow up learning that men and women are different, but it's really something that's entirely fluid.  How would you refute that?
Dr. Cretella:  Well, we started to in the last question. Again, to believe that, you have to be completely ignorant of genetics.  There are 6,500 genetic differences between men and women.  Now the fact that it's a binary as I said, comes down to the fact that the reality is we have sexual reproduction in the human species and reproduction is the rule in biology. Okay, number one: We have a binary. To rationalize outside of that, you have to rationalize away the entirety of medicine, because with 6,500 genetic differences between the two, it impacts how we treat disease.
Women are not small men! That is how women used to be treated. Science used to do research predominately on men and then look at women and say, "Oh, you're just a smaller body mass, so we're gonna treat your heart attack the same way and your high blood pressure the same way."  And now we're realizing, "Wow! No wonder we had different results with women, look at this. Now we can prove and understand why!" And there's a big push to get more women into pharmaceutical studies than ever before because we are different.

Transgenderism is a social construct.  The "fluidity" of sexuality: That's a social construct.  They have it exactly backwards. And the word gender, as I said earlier, is nothing more than a linguistic engineering term and should have no place in medicine.
We have biological sex, we have sex differences, some of which are purely biological and others that develop as a result of nature and nurture. Women have loads more oxytocin and oxytocin receptors than men do. That is the hormone that is associated with nurturing. It is released during labor, breast-feeding and is so key and important in the first three years of the mother and infant bonding.  It's the bonding hormone.  Although men have oxytocin as well, they have far fewer receptors in their brains. Every organ of the body is "sexed," if you will, genetically speaking and it's utterly ridiculous to make that assertion.
John Ritchie:  So it seems to me that you're saying that at a very deep level, the transgender movement is attacking the order that exists in human nature. Would you go that far and say that human nature is under attack?
Dr. Cretella: Oh, certainly!  If my feelings alone determine who I am, then there really is no such thing as a man or a woman.
We're essentially promoting doping. Men are doping on estrogen to become handicapped men.  Women are doping on testosterone to become handicapped men in a sense.
This whole "Oh, what do we do in sports?" I mean, really... doping is illegal, period. The end! That's it.  Giving a woman testosterone does not make her a man, giving a man estrogen does not make him a woman, the estrogen makes a man a handicapped man. And the testosterone makes the women the equivalent of a handicapped man. Well, I shouldn't even say a handicapped man because you can't change sex.
And in fact, in the Olympics, if a woman were extremely excelling, they [officials] would be concerned about doping and they would be looking in her system for testosterone, high levels of it. So this is utterly ludicrous.
In the past, a man puts on a dress, he's wearing drag. Well now, the drag is no longer made out of cotton and silk. Now the drag is hormones and surgery: It's still drag!
John Ritchie: It seems to me like it's a refinement of the radical idea of total equality.
Dr. Cretella: The error is to equate equality with sameness... they're not. Same does not mean equal.  Because we're equal in human dignity, but being male or female, that is the ultimate diversity we should be celebrating. There is no greater diversity than female and male. That is our innate identity and it's written on every cell of our body at the level of our DNA.
I would agree, we're making the mistake of equality meaning same. If that's what you believe, then ultimately we're eliminating:  There's no such thing as a woman, there's no such thing as a man.
John Ritchie: Finally, could you say something to encourage more Americans to stand up for the sacred institution of the family?
Dr. Cretella:  Absolutely.  I would say, the natural family, meaning a loving marriage between a man and a woman, is the most pro-child institution we have. So if you love children, nurture your marriage first of all.  It's the greatest gift you can give a child. We must stand up for that, because our children are hurting. Decades, decades of social science demonstrates that this is the most important thing we can do in terms of children's physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health. It's the family... it's the family.

Church of Mercy Excommunicates Its Critics



en.news Modernist Archbishop Corrado Lorefice of Palermo, Italy, has threatened Father Alessandro Minutella with excommunication if he does not make a personalized public act of fidelity to Pope Francis, although Father Minutella had already professed all the truth of the Catholic Faith including loyalty of will and intellect to the Roman Pontiff.

In a video published on November 9 Minutella replies, “Does this mean that the Roman Pontiff is not the same as Pope Francis?” He adds, “This looks like a regime, not like the Catholic Church.” In March 2017 Minutella was removed from his parish because of his strenuous defense of the Catholic Faith and for criticizing Amoris Laetitia.


Marco Tosatti comments on his blog: “Father Minutella is certainly not the priest who has criticized Church decisions with a harsh tone. But others [who were Modernists] were treated with patience and tolerance. I wonder why.” 

Novena of the Miraculous Medal




O Immaculate Virgin Mary, 
Mother of Our Lord Jesus and our Mother, 
penetrated with the most lively confidence in your all-powerful and never-failing intercession, manifested so often through the Miraculous Medal, 
we your loving and trustful children implore you to obtain for us the graces and favors we ask during this novena, 
if they be beneficial to our immortal souls,
and the souls for whom we pray.
(Here form your petition)


You know, O Mary, how often our souls have been the sanctuaries of your Son who hates iniquity. 
Obtain for us then a deep hatred of sin and that purity of heart which will attach us to God alone so that our every thought, word and deed may tend to His greater glory.
Obtain for us also a spirit of prayer and self-denial that we may recover by penance what we have lost by sin and at length attain to that blessed abode where you are the Queen of angels and of men.
Amen. 

Friday, November 17, 2017

U.S. Bishops Continue Supporting Abortion and Homosexualism


The parishes in the USA collect this Sunday donations for the Bishops’ “Campaign for Human Development” which funds – as in previous years – pro-abortion and pro-gay Groups.


The Lepanto Institute lists twelve organizations which receive between 25,000 and 70,000 Dollar from the bishops although they engage in highly immoral programs.

One of them is Hmong American Farmers Association whose founder and executive director actively promotes abortion and gay pseudo-marriage. en.news

Campaign for Human Development Continues Funding for Pro-Abortion, Pro-Homosexual Groups


Is Bergoglio “under the control of Satan”?


The Associated Press is reporting, and no doubt with considerable satisfaction, that Francis has charged so-called climate change deniers with being “perverse” concerning what he considers “one of the most worrying phenomena our humanity is experiencing.”
If only the Humble One’s propensity for dabbling in pseudo-science and name-calling was our biggest problem!
In a message  to the Conference of States Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, His Greeness said (while quoting himself – one of his other favorite pastimes):
Unfortunately, many efforts to seek concrete solutions to the environmental crisis are often frustrated for various reasons ranging from denial of the problem to indifference, comfortable resignation, or blind trust in technical solutions (cf. Encyclical Laudato si’, 14).
We should avoid falling into the trap of these four perverse attitudes…
Francis reiterated his support for the Paris Agreement and its (allegedly) “clear path of transition to a low- or zero-carbon model of economic development,” exhorting the assembly:
I would like to reaffirm my urgent call to renew dialogue on how we are building the future of the planet.
Make no mistake, the planet “we” – meaning, Bergoglio & Co. – “are building” is the City of Man; one not just unlike the City of God, but rather one actively opposed to it.
The bottom line here is staggering and yet simple.
In his book, “The Fourth Secret of Fatima” (2009 English Publication, Loreto Publications), Italian journalist Antonio Socci offers details of a radio interview of Fr. Malachi Martin (who had read the Third Secret of Fatima) and his exchange with a caller:
A listener intervenes on the precise content of the Secret: making reference to confidences received from a Jesuit, he speaks of a Pope who “would be under the control of Satan. Pope John was reeling, thinking that it could have been him.” Father Martin responds: “Yes, it seems that this person would have had a means of reading or would have been given the contents of the secret.” Then he got to the heart of the matter: “it is sufficiently vague to cause hesitation, but it seems to be that.”
Can we be absolutely certain that the Third Secret of Fatima concerns a pope under the control of Satan?
No.
I’m not even sure how anyone can be absolutely certain that Francis is actually the pope!
That said, there can be no doubt whatsoever that Francis is – if not under the control of Satan – the Evil One’s most powerful servant alive and active in the world today.
With nearly every Bergoglian initiative – from the Synod charade, to the Year of Mercy masquerade, and his numerous ecumenical endeavors – if one but scratches the surface, there one will find evidence that Satan is writing the script.
And when I say “scratch the surface,” I mean just that – a mere scratch is all it takes.
A simple internet search of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (unfccc.int) reveals the undeniable presence of the diabolical:
  • “These false arguments [against coercive birth control and abortions] must no longer hold the poor to ransom. Globally, population growth is primarily driven by coercive pregnancy: where women and couples are not given informed choice to avoid pregnancy … Indefinite population growth is physically impossible on a finite planet. It must stop at some point: either sooner through fewer births by contraception and humane, pro-active population policy.” [Emphasis in original]
  • “…the creation of a fund to ensure that rural and poor women can access abortion services.”
  • “An external evaluation of the Global Fund’s Gender Equality Strategy and Sexual Orientation and Gender Identities Strategy in 2011 pointed out that rather than relying on individual staff members, the implementation of gender-mainstreaming has to be understood as a Secretariat-wide priority.”
The curious can do their own internet search and within minutes unearth countless citations of a similar nature; more than can be read in a single day.
So, how bad is it?
After pledging his support for the efforts of the UNFCCC, and by appearance the endorsement of the Holy Catholic Church, Jorge Bergoglio – cashing in on his papal bella figura, whether real or imagined – concluded his message saying:   
“This commitment is supported by the wise providence of God Most High.”
It’s high time for the milk-drinkers among us to throw away their sippy cups and come to terms with the bitter reality that is staring every authentic Catholic square in the face:
Satan has taken up residence in the Vatican.


Monday, November 13, 2017

Vatican Theologian Sacked for Questioning “Merciful” Bergoglio


Written by  Hilary White
The Catholic Twitterverse is alive today with criticism of the USCCB’s decision to sack Fr. Thomas Weinandy, the former head of their doctrinal office. It took a matter of hours for the brave defenders of the status quo to leap into action against the mild Franciscan friar’s polite plea to Pope Francis to defend the Catholic Faith and faithful. Or at least to stop attacking them. 

In a letter made public November 1st, Fr. Weinandy, a former chief of staff for the U.S. Bishops’ Committee on Doctrine and a member of the Vatican’s International Theological Commission, warned Pope Francis that he has caused “chronic confusion” among the faithful and bishops.  




He wrote to the pope, “To teach with such an intentional lack of clarity inevitably risks sinning against the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of truth.” He added that Catholics are “disconcerted” by the appointment of bishops “who seem not merely open to those who hold views counter to Christian belief, but who support and even defend them.”



In an interview yesterday with John Allen’s Crux, he added, more prophetically than he had perhaps intended, “I don’t think anyone can, or should, associate my letter with the USCCB or the American bishops. Neither was involved in my writing the letter, and its publication will be news to them.”

“Bishops are quick learners,” he wrote in his letter, “and what many have learned from your pontificate is not that you are open to criticism, but that you resent it,” claiming that many bishops don’t speak out publicly for fear they will be “marginalized or worse.”

And sure enough, within hours of making his letter public, we learned that Fr. Weinandy had been given the boot. Of course, the Twitterverse is busy commenting on the irony: how a man expressing grave concerns that there is an atmosphere of fear of being punished for expressing grave concerns, was immediately fired. 

Perhaps the most astonishing aspect of this little incident is just how completely blind the US bishops – as with nearly all the episcopate – are to what political analysts call the “optics”. Political consultants often ask: how does it look? And it looks extremely bad. As though the fog of irony weren’t thick enough, in response to the outrage from Catholics, the USCCB has done what all the other members of Pope Francis’ cabal have done and started blocking critics from its Twitter account. Which, it must be said, only proves Fr. Weinandy’s point once again. 

Some of the criticism has been unusually sharp. Fr. Hunwicke wrote this afternoon, “This cheap and vulgar ritual humiliation exemplifies the extent to which P[ope] F[rancis] is presiding over a bully-boy Church in which midget bishops and minicardinals compete to defeat each other in the sycophancy stakes. Just as Tom Weinandy has, in effect, just said.”

As I write this, the outrage is doing the opposite of dying down, and is surely a sign of how fed up Catholics – even those who would never identify themselves as Traditionalists – have become with this pope and his cadre of episcopal bullies. In his letter, Fr. Weinandy made a point of stating that he is not signatory to the Filial Correction or any other public declaration against Pope Francis’ agenda. 

In fact, a former student of his wrote to me today saying, 



“I see that Fr. Thomas Weinandy has been squashed. He was one of my professors in Patristics at Oxford and he was one of the most mild-mannered, least confrontational, kindest academics one could have hoped to meet. To me, the fact that he has chosen to write to express his concern about the crisis in the church and the papacy is very significant.




He is neither a traditionalist, nor a controversialist, but a humble and straightforward Friar who is clear-thinking and entirely loyal to the Church and Her teaching. I would be surprised now if we were not see more of this sort of letter/exercise of conscience. I imagine that it’s going to become harder and harder for men of conscience and position to sit on the fence.


When I posted it, this assessment was backed up by Joseph Shaw, the head of the UK’s Latin Mass Society and the spokesman for the Filial Correction, who wrote, “This is absolutely right. Not a man to seek out confrontation.”




The Crux piece offered a succinct bullet point list of Fr. Weinandy’s concerns. He said the pope is…  

  • Fostering “chronic confusion.”
  • “Demeaning” the importance of doctrine.
  • Appointing bishops who “scandalize” believers with dubious “teaching and pastoral practice.”
  • Giving prelates who object the impression they’ll be “marginalized or worse” if they speak out.
  • Causing faithful Catholics to “lose confidence in their supreme shepherd.”


Our friend Edward Pentin has reproduced the full text of the letter at the National Catholic Register which is definitely worth a read. Fr. Weinandy sent the letter to the pope on July 31, the Feast of St. Ignatius of Loyola. Like the Dubia cardinals, he said he made it public only after the pope had ignored it for months. 




Notable in his critique is its distinct pastoral flavour, his concern on the effect the situation is having on ordinary people. The pope, he said, seems “to censor and even mock” critics of Amoris Laetitia for their desire to interpret it in keeping with Catholic teaching, and in doing so is committing a “kind of calumny…alien to the nature of the Petrine ministry.” 



In an interview with Crux, Weinandy said he is not afraid of reprisals but “more concerned about the good that my letter might do.” The letter “expresses the concerns of many more people than just me, ordinary people who’ve come to me with their questions and apprehensions. I wanted them to know that I listened.”

“I have done what I believe God wanted me to do,[1]” he said.

In fact, Fr. Weinandy has bolstered my own “Great Clarifier” theory, saying that this pontificate, and the lack of response to it from priests and bishops, is being allowed by God in order to reveal “just how weak is the faith of many within the Church,” He added that Francis has revealed that many in the Church “hold harmful theological and pastoral views.” 

Which inevitably brings to mind other responses that have not been quite so clear, nor so pastoral. 

When Cardinal Muller was removed abruptly from his position as head of the CDF, the conservative Catholic world wailed that it was another case of a “good” prelate being got rid of. And it seems clear from the way it was done, and the way Francis treated Muller in general, that he was indeed got rid of. But his depiction by conservative writers as a beleaguered champion of Catholic orthodoxy persecuted by the regime for his faithfulness betrays a somewhat selective memory and short attention span. Ed Pentin has a long file of interviews and articles about Muller that clearly show his complete inability to make up his mind whose side he’s on. 

A quick examination of Muller’s interviews and statements reveal an irresolute and ultimately calculating mind of a man who is – so I am told by sources close to him – motivated mainly by a puerile desire to be approved of by the “cool kids” in the Vatican, on the one hand, and an unshakeable conviction of his own theological brilliance on the other. 

Most recently, on October 30th, Crux quoted him under the headline, “Cardinal Muller backs Pope Francis against critics of ‘Amoris Laetitia’” in which the former head of the CDF has at last climbed on board the Kasperian train on reception of Communion for unrepentant adulterers. 

Signaling furiously with the trendy FrancisChurch buzzwords and even trendier blithering incoherence, Muller writes that “mitigating factors in guilt,” can lead, couples in “an uncertain marital situation” through a “path of repentance” – always “accompanied” by an exquisitely sensitive confessor – to a point where the reception of Communion is no longer sinful. Presumably because adultery itself is no longer sinful. Or sacrilege either, I guess. Or something. Somehow the “new evangelization” is involved in this, though it’s unclear how exactly it makes adultery and sacrilege OK. Also, it’s very important to fulfill the Sunday Mass obligation, and as everyone knows, one can’t possibly go to Mass on a Sunday without receiving Communion. 

We hear again, as we did incessantly from the Kasperians at the Synods, about the hard case of the poor, poor woman who has been abandoned by the first husband, and who “finds no other way out than to entrust oneself to a kind-hearted person,” … with whom, I guess, she has also no choice but to have sexual relations. Because of kind-heartedness. 

Anyway, the result of this is a “marriage-like relationship” about which confessors have to be very careful not to say mean things. Or be too “extreme”. It’s very important for him to avoid a “cheap adaptation to the relativistic Zeitgeist,” on one side, and a “cold application of the dogmatic commandments and the canonical rules,” on the other. Because that could be too polarizing. And mean. 

And anyway, sins of the flesh aren’t the worst things ever. There are, like, “different levels” of gravity, you know? And, like, it depends on the type of sin, right? “Spirit’s sins” like spiritual pride and avarice and stuff, are worse than “sins of the flesh,” you know? Which are, like, only a result of “human weakness,” right?

Apparently the real problem with this whole thing has been that the Kasperian kerfuffle has totally been blown way, way, WAY out of proportion, and the “polarization” it has caused has been “regrettable”. The question of Communion for divorced and civilly “remarried” Catholics, he said, has been “falsely elevated to the rank of a decisive question of Catholicism and a measure of ideological comparison in order to decide whether one is conservative or liberal, in favor or against the pope.”

For years under Pope Benedict, Muller was engaged in an open war with the German episcopate who insisted that they were going to allow Communion for the divorced and remarried, no matter what Rome said, even threatening to go into schism if they didn’t get their way[2]

Muller, with little backing from Pope Benedict – who appeared content to allow his CDF prefect and the Germans shout out their differences – and with outright opposition from Francis, did indeed strive to hold the line. The fact that Francis orchestrated the Synods to undermine him was certainly not his fault. And it is difficult to imagine anyone being in a worse position than he was at the time. 

But since then, Muller has demonstrated very little of his former grit, instead attempting from one day to the next to appease both sides. Reportedly removed from CDF – and of course lionized by “conservatives” – for his mild and equivocating opposition to Amoris Laetitia, Muller has gone back and forth in what can easily be seen as a desperate attempt to find friends in both camps. With this in mind one could be forgiven for not taking his October 30th essay too seriously. 

Perhaps one of the good effects to come from Fr. Weinandy’s persecution will be to demonstrate how a pastor of the Catholic Church is supposed to act. As my friend said, maybe “it’s going to become harder and harder for men of conscience and position to sit on the fence,” assuming there are any left.