Archbp. of Brisbane: bomb threat for removing Fr. Kennedy from St. Mary’s

You know about the flap in Brisbane, Australia.  The Archbishop of Brisbane has finally… finally acted to check the renegade priest Fr. Peter Kennedy, heretic and perhaps soon to be schismatic, who has been warping the parish of St. Mary for years.

This is now in from the Sydney Morning Herald.  My emphases and comments.

Qld Archbishop warned of bomb threat
David Barbeler
February 21, 2009 – 6:34PM

Archbishop John Bathersby has been the target of a bomb threat following the sacking of a rebel priest at St Mary’s church in South Brisbane.

A spokesman for the Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane said on Saturday the threat was received at the Archbishop’s office on Friday.

He confirmed that the Archbishop’s residence was the target in the letter.

"It made mention of St Mary’s, but that’s now in the hands of police," the spokesman said.

He refused to confirm whether the letter was written by someone who supported sacked 71-year-old rebel priest Father Peter Kennedy, or a supporter of the Catholic Archdiocese.  [Excuse me… but why would a supporter threaten to bomb what he supports?]

Fr Kennedy was sacked from his ministry at St Mary’s parish on Thursday by Brisbane Archbishop Bathersby for breaching church rules.

A police spokesman confirmed a bomb threat had been made and investigations were continuing.

St Mary’s has been the centre of controversy in recent months, with Fr Kennedy attracting the stern eye of the Vatican itself.

The congregation of 700 has a unique ministry in the inner-city suburb of South Brisbane, widely acknowledged as a haven for the poor, the marginalised, indigenous people, homosexuals and broken families. [aren’t they wonderful?]

Fr Ken Howell has been appointed to replace Fr Kennedy, and the two recently met face to face.

At that meeting, Fr Kennedy refused to hand over the keys to the parish buildings, including the church, and told Fr Howell that he would officiate at all masses this weekend[what a guy]

Fr Kennedy said he expected the church to be packed to the rafters during the church’s concert on Saturday night and at the 7am and 9am Sunday masses.

"I’m expecting probably a thousand people here on Sunday morning – I wouldn’t be surprised," Fr Kennedy said.

"I have to tell you our collection on Sunday morning is usually $2,100 – last Sunday it was $5,400 – so that says a lot."  [indeed… what it says, however, is not to clear yet]

Fr Howell has been advised by the Queensland Police Service not to attend this weekend’s masses at St Mary’s for his own safety[A real sign of the spiritual nature of Fr. Kennedy’s work]

"I have also been contacted by a number of people, saying they would like to attend the services but are hesitant to do so because they are concerned about their own, and their families’ safety," Fr Howell said.

Despite the bomb threat made to his residence, Archbishop Bathersby said the Brisbane Catholic Archdioceses’ priority was to ensure the proper transition of the parish to the new administrator.

"In this difficult situation, I believe a sensible next step would be to have an experienced, independent and eminent mediator meet with the Archdiocese and Fr Kennedy to attempt to achieve a peaceful and dignified outcome," [a little late for that, I think] the Archbishop said.

In the meantime, I hear Fr. Kennedy has some strong support from an interesting quarter.  The site Perth Now tells us that the UFO crowds thinks Fr. Kennedy is their sort of guy!

A small party of Raelians, who believe that alien beings have intervened in earthly affairs, were outside St Mary’s with signs supporting Fr Kennedy.

And in case you were thinking that this all sounds familiar, Fr. Kennedy clears it up:

"But we can take heart from the words of Jesus himself, who was judged harshly for his unorthodox behaviour – ‘By their fruits you will know them’."

Indeed.  The fruits are standing outside with signs.

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92 Responses to Archbp. of Brisbane: bomb threat for removing Fr. Kennedy from St. Mary’s

  1. Cathy says:

    “The stern eye of the Vatican”. Right.

  2. Felicitas says:

    Is the church property owned by the Archdiocese? Since there are now threats of violence, can the civil authorities get involved?
    Praying for the Archbishop, Fr. Howell, and for Fr. Kennedy and his parishioners. :(

  3. Michael Kramer says:

    “Indeed. The fruits are standing outside with signs.”
    LOL!!!!!!!!!

  4. Andrew, UK and sometimes Canada says:

    Fr Z: Indeed. The fruits are standing outside with signs.

    Note to self: Don’t drink tea while reading WDTPRS. (Wiping tea off monitor after futile attempt to supress guffaw!)

  5. Dan says:

    “perhaps soon to be schismatic”

    Father, isn’t Father Kennedy already schismatic?

  6. Paule says:

    Fr. Z, you have a great sense of humor…this situation is unbelievable and quite funny. It has become a circus. So, for 28 years, nothing happened to this guy and now, here we are. Aren’t they doing strange stuff in Linz too?
    People wait until it’s too late to reverse effetiveley the situation and we are caught up in such a spectacle.

  7. Dan says:

    “But we can take heart from the words of Jesus himself, who was judged harshly for his unorthodox behaviour.”

    No,

    Jesus was judged harshly by us unorthodox creatures for His ORTHODOX teachings.

    Where’s the common sense?

  8. D says:

    Could be supporters of the Archdiocese trying to defame Fr. Kennedy. Either way, Fr. Kennedy said that would be no violence, and this does not have his blessing.

    He has also said he would not elad a schism. Let us pray the the Archbishop opens up his heart.

  9. don Jeffry says:

    The Raelians are the orgy group. Maybe they’re trying to get a foot in the door. When Catholics lose the faith, they’ll go for anything.

    http://www.ynet.co.il/english/articles/0,7340,L-3642845,00.html

  10. D says:

    O yes, my evaluation is that this is probably an attempt to keep the people from assembling at Saint Mary’s.

  11. Is it me, or are a large portion of these far left whacko rebel priests Irish?

  12. You can tell a lot about a person based on friends and enemies. Supported by the Raelians? According to their own website: \”The messages dictated to Rael explain that life on Earth is not the result of random evolution, nor the work of a supernatural \’God\’. It is a deliberate creation, using DNA, by a scientifically advanced people who made human beings literally \”in their image\” — what one can call \”scientific creationism.\” So this begs the deeper question – what else is Fr. Kennedy into??? Yeesh. This also sounds a lot like those 2012 types who say the Annunaki created humans from theirs and earthly DNA. Science fiction\’s got nuthin\’ compared to what people really believe… sadly – such nonsense.

  13. Matthew says:

    What I don’t understand is that Fr. Kennedy has refused to hand over the keys, and intends to say Mass. He is not the Parish priest, and could be removed by the Police. The Parish Priest has been advised to stay home. I think if I were Kennedy’s replacement, I would change the locks, and take out some kind of restraining order on Kennedy to keep him away from the Church. It very sad that it has to come to that, but Kennedy intends to essentially hold a Chuch hostage this Sunday.

  14. Guy says:

    You have such compassion for the marginalized Father Z!
    I’m amazed that you don’t have a parochial assignment.

  15. GOR says:

    “Indeed. The fruits are standing outside with signs.”

    …while the nuts are inside!

    Sorry, couldn’t resist that. Off to confession now!

  16. RW says:

    ”You have such compassion for the marginalized Father Z!
    I’m amazed that you don’t have a parochial assignment.”

    Ah, but Fr. Z is based in Rome.

    (even though he seems not to have been there for a very long time. I wonder why that is?)

  17. Mitchell NY says:

    So he refuses to hand over the keys and he plans to say Mass on Sunday with a few hundred followers? Sounds like a splinter group of the former Branch Davidians of Waco, Texas. Pray for these people to see the light before it goes any further. A very sad situation indeed.

  18. RW says:

    Sean: *Is it me, or are a large portion of these far left whacko rebel priests Irish?*

    By all means call them whackos. They are wackos. But don\’t associate them with the regular left. That is, not unless you want SSPX and the sedevacantists associated with the regular right (i.e. you lot)

    Left and right are distinctions within the regular fold of Catholic Christianity. But this guy denies the virgin birth and the resurrection. That\’s not left. That\’s bloody atheist!

  19. Fr J says:

    I think the fruit of Fr Peter’s ministry was in the bomb package. His attitude hardly seems charitable towards the Archbishop or his fellow priest…

  20. JSZ says:

    The Raelians also caused a stir in Quebec a few years ago. In their efforts against the Church they held rallies asking those who no longer attended the Holy Mass or practiced the Faith to sign official forms of apostasy (to be sent to their Bishops) and then burn small black crosses as a symbol of this renunciation.

  21. Ron says:

    RW, you said: “Left and right are distinctions within the regular fold of Catholic Christianity. But this guy denies the virgin birth and the resurrection. That’s not left. That’s bloody atheist!”

    Right and left are by no means “distinctions within the regular fold of Catholic Christianity.” There is only one center, orthodoxy – which means faithfulness to the Tradition and to the Magisterium of the Church. Left and right, liberal and conservative, are political terms that mean nothing in the Church. There is orthodoxy and heterodoxy, that is all. One either adheres fully to the teaching of the Church or does not.

    Pax Christi tecum.

  22. I agree with the comment that the Archbishop should get the locks changed and give the new pastor the keys. The police should be removing the heretic priest for trespassing instead of warning the rightful pastor to stay away for his safety. What a weird situation. God help us.

  23. RW says:

    Yes Ron (funny, that’s my name too!) that’s true. There is truth and falsehood. There is true to Christ and there is just plain wrong. Problem is though, both left and right will claim that they are on the right side. Go figure.

    As for “left and right”… love those terms of hate them, they’re not going away!!

  24. RW says:

    Roseanne,

    I am sure Damian Thompson could share some thoughts here about Bishops who change the locks at Churches!

  25. Ron says:

    RW, the Catholic Church teaches the fullness of Jesus’ truth through the Magisterium. The official teaching of the Church, through the Councils and the declarations of the Popes, is the truth. People either accept that (orthodox) or reject it (heterodox).

    There is not some sort of ambiguous “true to Christ” out there that we are trying to attain, with the left and right fighting it out to see who gets it. No, the Catholic Church possesses the truth and proclaims it. People either accept or reject it.

    Left and right terminology attempts to say there are two opposing viewpoints of the Catholic Faith, both of which are legitimate and both of which are fighting it out for victory – as if this were a democratic election. That view could not be further from the truth of the Catholic Church.

    Pax Christi tecum.

  26. RW says:

    Okay Ron, so when the Catholic Church was saying that it was okay to burn people at the steak and others were saying that the Church was wrong, who was right back then??

    And when the Church came out and said that those things were wrong and apologised for them, who was right and wrong then??

    By definition, at one point or the other (the first IMHO) the Church was wrong.

    Point being, sometimes the ‘heterodox’ get it right. Tricky one.

  27. O' Neill says:

    “Is it me, or are a large portion of these far left whacko rebel priests Irish?”

    A large portion of priests in any English-speaking country are Irish, or of Irish descent.

    Kennedy coming from the Irish Ó’ Cinnéide, meaning ‘descendant of ugly-head’

  28. Matthew Hysell says:

    What the heck is wrong with you, Father John?

    While it is likely the priest in question subscribes to heresy, but labelling one a “heretic” belongs to the “competent ecclesiastical authority.” Most canonists insist that a “heretic” is only one who has been found guilty by an ecclesiastical trial. See CIC, cc. 194.1.2, cf. 194.2).

    The question is whether the priest in question maintains obstiante denial or obstinate doubt of an article of faith (c. 751). Determining whether this denial or doubt is obstiante is best left to the internal forum, which is why it is necessary to hold an ecclesiastical trial in order to determine whether there is obstinance.

    And remember, too, that the great Father and Doctor of the Church, St John Chrysostom, clearly distinguished “heresy” from a “heretic.”

    Could it be that obnoxious traditionalists such as yourself and your readers have contributed to the hardining of this priest’s heart?

    Thanks be to God for canon law!

    M. G. Hysell

    P.S. I’ve sent this email to a number of canon lawyers.

  29. Ron says:

    RW, you’re speaking of a practice, something people did. The Church, as far as I know, never had any sort of officially binding teaching on the practice of burning at the stake that she changed. It was something that was done that was later apologized for; that is the actions of a few, not the official teaching of the Magisterium of the Church.

    I am speaking of the official teaching of the Church by which we know what is true.

    Pax Christi tecum.

  30. Ron says:

    Mr. Hysell commented: “Could it be that obnoxious traditionalists such as yourself and your readers have contributed to the hardining of this priest’s heart?”

    Yes, I am sure this priests heterodoxy, which we know because he has made his opinions known and they are explicitly contrary to the dogmas of the Catholic Faith, is all the fault of Catholics who hold to the Tradition. If speaking out for the truth is a fault, then I’ll gladly hold company with the likes of St. Athanasius. Somehow I don’t think people blame the heresy of his enemies the Saint’s own fault.

    Pax Christi tecum.

  31. RW says:

    Ron…

    Do you want me to list encyclicals?? (slavery, discrimination, heretic burning etc)

    Or are we saying that anything we are not 100% certain is infallible is up for grabs?

    If so, there are a few things I would like to raise :)

    Ron

    Anyhow, I was rather hoping people would respond to my initial point in this topic about Fr. Z not being in Rome for a very long time. Rather an deafening silence there, I feel.

  32. Ron says:

    RW, can you please give me the name of the heretic burning encylical? I’d be curious to read it.

    And yes, obviously not everything written in an encyclical is infallible therefore not a part of the actual doctrines or dogmas of the Faith. I am sure you understand that aspect. I am speaking of what is officially pronounced to be the Faith by the full power of the Church, protected and guided by the Holy Spirit.

    Pax Christi tecum.

  33. RW says:

    *RW, can you please give me the name of the heretic burning encylical? I’d be curious to read it.*

    Certainly. Try *Exsurge Domine* (http://www.papalencyclicals.net/Leo10/l10exdom.htm)

    *And yes, obviously not everything written in an encyclical is infallible therefore not a part of the actual doctrines or dogmas of the Faith. I am sure you understand that aspect. I am speaking of what is officially pronounced to be the Faith by the full power of the Church, protected and guided by the Holy Spirit.*

    Agreed. But with the note that our understanding of a particular dogma can sometimes change rather radically, even without the dogma itself being contradicted.

  34. Matthew Hysell says:

    It looks like someone needs to study Fr Francis Sullivan\’s Creative Fidelity and Magisterium as well as the late Cardinal Dulles\’ book by the same title. Reading the documents of the sacred magisterium is a rare art, and one seldom acquired by traditionalists.

    And, by the way, \”traditionalist\” is a misnomer, as they (1) subscribe to the \”partim…partim\” theory rejected by the Council of Trent, (2) fail to distinguish \”Sacred Tradition\” and \”magisterium\” and (3) are often illiterate in the writings of the Fathers.

    For all the \”traditionalism\” they pretend to espouse, quoting Denzinger or Neuner/Dupuis is something I almost never see.

  35. Ron says:

    Actually, Mr. Hysell, I can see Denzinger sitting on my bookshelf right now and I use it quite often. In addition I have read much of the Fathers. I’m not sure how Denzinger or the Fathers are any issues or problem to any Catholic who is faithful to the Tradition.

    Pax Christi tecum.

  36. NY seminarian says:

    RW

    Yes please, i WOULD like you to list encyclicals, because the encyclicals you have implied that exist do not exist. Show me one official church teaching that tells us that slavery or heretic burning is to be done, and anyone who states anything to the contrary is in heresy – because you cannot. At no point have slavery, unjust discrimination or heretic burning been part of the official doctrine of the Church. You will find quite the opposite. Certainly on slavery, this has been consistently condemned with letter after letter after letter by the Popes throughout the Middle Ages.

    As for discrimination, there is nothing wrong with discrimination, only unjust discrimination, so i suppose what counts as unjust discrimination would be up for debate. The one example i can think of that would support your claim is a recommendation by Lateran IV that recommended non-Christians in Christian provinces dress differently. But this was soon overturned a number of years later.

    However, the great thing about the Catholic Church is that you always know what it teaches, and its teaching only ever develops it never changes, and not one historian or theologian has been able to show this to the contrary, except for the ones who dont do research, or get their facts wrong. This is nothing to do with infallibility, just about a basic distinction between doctrine and discipline.

    As for Fr Z, i think you will find silence as none of us knows the ins and outs of his life. Neither, for that matter, do you!

  37. D says:

    Why is it ok for traditionalists to attack poor FATHER Kennedy, but it is a major injustice to have an article merely criticizng Father Timothy Finigan?

  38. Matthew Hysell says:

    Ron:

    (1) You’re missing my point. Why not abandon the irreducible complexity of parsing one’s Catholicity and simply adhere to the Church–magisterium, canon law, and all? “Traditionalism” has less to do with Sacred Tradition than to the externals of Baroque culture;

    (2) As you should know, Congar and Rahner have written significant pieces on correctly using Denzinger. Would you be able to distinguish “definitive dogma”, “authoritative doctrine”, “prudential admonitions”, and “theological opinions” among the texts included in Denzinger? Or even distinguish the ordinary universal magisterium from the extraordinary solemn magisterium? You cannot proof-text the pronouncements of the Church as a Fundamentalist proof-texts the Bible!

  39. O' Neill says:

    RW I am just after reading Exsurge Domine and I see no orders to burn any heretics.
    Maybe I missed it? Can you point it out please?

    I found this part quite beautiful:

    Therefore let Martin [Luther] himself and all those adhering to him, and those who shelter and support him, through the merciful heart of our God and the sprinkling of the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ by which and through whom the redemption of the human race and the upbuilding of holy mother Church was accomplished, know that from our heart we exhort and beseech that he cease to disturb the peace, unity, and truth of the Church for which the Savior prayed so earnestly to the Father. Let him abstain from his pernicious errors that he may come back to us. If they really will obey, and certify to us by legal documents that they have obeyed, they will find in us the affection of a father’s love, the opening of the font of the effects of paternal charity, and opening of the font of mercy and clemency

  40. RW says:

    *Yes please, i WOULD like you to list encyclicals, because the encyclicals you have implied that exist do not exist. Show me one official church teaching that tells us that slavery or heretic burning is to be done*

    Erm… okay then. Let’s start with:

    Heretic Burning — Exsurge Domine (1520)
    Slavery — Dum Diversas (1452)
    Discrimination (in this case, against Jews living in the Papal States) — Cum nimis absurdum (1555)

    How’s that :)

  41. Jane says:

    I am taking my holidays on the mid north coast of New South Wales next week. The parishes there while not being by any means perfect, are better than the wacky north (Brisbane, Queensland)

  42. Ron says:

    D, because Fr. Kennedy has denied dogmas of the Church while Fr. Finnigan is entirely faithful to the Faith.

    Mr. Hysell:

    (1) I have no idea why you think traditionals do not adhere to the Magisterium, Canon Law and all? We do.

    (2) I’m not going to take Congar and Rahner’s advice on how to interpret sources within Denzinger, that’s for sure. Why listen to them as opposed to anyone else?

    Pax Christi tecum.

  43. RW says:

    *Why is it ok for traditionalists to attack poor FATHER Kennedy, but it is a major injustice to have an article merely criticizng Father Timothy Finigan?*

    YES. AGREED.

    I find it completely disgusting that those who criticise Fr. Finigan are being painted almost as Nazis, whereas the trad blogs (both authors and commenters) routinely say the most nasty and awful things about people they dislike.

    Elena Curti’s article was probably broadly anti-trad, but she went to lengths to get both sides, and she even quoted a few people who supported the Latin Masses. Contrast that with, for example, Damian Thompson’s treatment of +Arthur Roche and others. Bear in mind that DT admits that he likes to “piss them off”

    Says it all really!

  44. RW says:

    O’Neill,

    Among other things, that Papal Bull specifically condemned as false “the assertion that burning heretics is against the will of the spirit.” (or words closely to that effect)

    Enough said.

  45. O' Neill says:

    RW, you probably didn’t see my post. Please respond.

  46. Matthew Hysell says:

    Case in point: The 17 January 2001 decision of the supreme magisterium in decreeing that the Anaphora of Addai and Mari, even without the words of consecration ad litteram, is in fact valid. The “traditionalists” at Rorate Caeli were all up-in-arms about it, despite the fact that the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith presented their investigation for H.H. Pope +John Paul II to sign.

    So you haven’t read Rahner. I’ve scarcely come across another theologian who has more respect for the magisterium and takes it as seriously as he does. His Theological Investigations are replete with references to the Church’s teaching authority and he is stubbornly insistent on adhering to it. And it’s not them “as opposed to anyone else.” We’ve also got Cardinal Dulles, Fr Francis Sullivan, Fr Ladislas Orsy, all of whom would agree with Rahner and Congar.

    By the way, Denzinger is now in its 38th edition (2005).

  47. RW says:

    I should add to my second last post that I am no supporter of Fr. Kennedy. If he is doing and saying the things he is reported to have done and said, then he is a nut, plain and simple.

    However, the dichotomy between the treatment that trads expect to receive and the treatment that they give are wildly different.

  48. Ron says:

    D and RW: so it is okay when Fr. Kennedy denies the faith, calls himself Catholic still and holds hostage a church?

    Mr. Hysell: so basically we should read Congar, Rahner and anyone else who agrees with them? Cardinal Dulles is not a strong orthodox theologian and has written some question things, as did Mr. Rahner (“anonymous Christians” anyone?).

    Just because someone, in your cse Rahner, using tons of references to the Church’s teaching authority does not mean they are using them correctly. Jean Calvin quoted St. Augustine ad nauseum yet managed to fall into heresies St. Augustine never did.

    Yes, and I said, I have Denzinger.

    Pax Christi tecum.

  49. D says:

    Ron: I do not know the situation well enough, I just point out what I see. Is it ok that Fr. Finigan came in, made sweeping changes, and divided a parish for a tiny group of disgruntled traditionalists? At least Fr. Finigan has a united parish.

    I am in no way endorsing what he said, if he did actually say those things, but that is no need to demonize him.

  50. Matthew Hysell says:

    I’ll take +JPII’s giving the red hat to Avery Dulles and Papa +Bendettto XVI’s commendations on the occasion of his death over your slander any day.

  51. RW says:

    *D and RW: so it is okay when Fr. Kennedy denies the faith, calls himself Catholic still and holds hostage a church?*

    No. It’s not okay. So the objections to him should be stated politely but firmly.

    What’s not okay is the hypocricy (which I see in the trad blog world) of insulting, intimidating and belittling people all over the place, and then going and crying to mummy when one of their own is criticised.

    What’s happening with Fr. Kennedy is definitely not okay. It should be challenged. But in charity.

  52. Ron says:

    D: Fr. Finigan did what the Church said, which was that the traditional Mass should be made available and can help enrich even the Novus Ordo. Nothing he did was contrary to the mind of the Church.

    Mr. Hysell: So do you contend that there never has been a Cardinal whose teaching was less than orthodox? If you ask me, a red hat does not a Saint nor an orthodox theologian make.

    Pax Christi tecum.

  53. RW says:

    *D and RW: so it is okay when Fr. Kennedy denies the faith, calls himself Catholic still and holds hostage a church?*

    No, it\’s not okay.

    But neither is the treatment that many people receive on trad blogs. And neither is it then okay to cry foul when one of their own is criticised. Somewhat hypocritical, no?

  54. D says:

    Ron: There was not a stable group present.

  55. RW again says:

    *D and RW: so it is okay when Fr. Kennedy denies the faith, calls himself Catholic still and holds hostage a church?*

    No, it\’s not okay.

    But neither is the treatment that many people receive on trad blogs. And neither is it then okay to cry foul when one of their own is criticised. Somewhat hypocritical, no?

    I have nothing against Fr. Finigan, although he and I wouldn’t see eye to eye on many things. He has a right to do what his conscience dictates in his parish. But others have the right to question and criticize. As he himself questions and criticizes others on his blog!

    P.S. I wonder why my comments are suddenly flagged as spam when I start to disagree?? Still, it only takes 2 minutes to get a new IP and clear my cookies :)

  56. Dan says:

    D

    For the simple reason that Father Finigan gives his assent of faith to everything that the Church and therefore, Christ teaches for the salvation of souls,
    and
    Father Kennedy is disobeying the Church and Christ to the detriment of souls.

    Pretend you have two children.
    One of them gives his sibling cow pies to eat.
    The other one does not eat the cow pie, but rather does all his chores.

    Would you allow the naughty one to get away with the misdeed without admonition?
    Would you punish the good child for doing all his chores.

    Or would you rather admonish the naughty child
    and
    compliment the good child.

  57. Ron says:

    RW said: “I have nothing against Fr. Finigan, although he and I wouldn’t see eye to eye on many things. He has a right to do what his conscience dictates in his parish.”

    There is the core problem! You see everything as each individual doing what their conscience dictates. Fr. Finigan offers the traditional Mass while Fr. Kennedy denies Catholic dogma. Each to his own conscience! No, the measure is the Catholic Faith and whether what one does is faithful to the clear teaching of the Faith. It is not just up to one’s conscience. It is also objectively whether their actions are in accord or against the rule of the Faith.

    Pax Christi tecum

  58. RW again says:

    Dan,

    Who is right and who is wrong are beside the point. I agree that Fr. F is more right than Fr. K. No doubt there. But insulting and intimidating treatment are never okay whether the intended recipient is right or wrong. Fair debate and polite questioning are legitimate, but the hypocrisy of spending your days ripping into others and then crying to mummy when you get some back is unbelievable.

  59. RW again says:

    *No, the measure is the Catholic Faith and whether what one does is faithful to the clear teaching of the Faith.*

    Oh Boy…

    I think we\’ve had this discussion once. Just scroll up a bit and re-read the points about Papal Bulls etc. And, by the way, nobody has really answered my points about that stuff yet.

  60. O' Neill says:

    “I wonder why my comments are suddenly flagged as spam when I start to disagree?? Still, it only takes 2 minutes to get a new IP and clear my cookies :)”

    This comment makes it patently clear that RW is a monumental jackass with an insatiable hunger for ruffling a few feathers. His purpose here is not to advance to the discussion, but to hijack it for his own enjoyment.

    Let’s stop responding to him and let the troll starve.

  61. Ron says:

    Agreed O’Neill.

    Pax Christi tecum.

  62. NY seminarian says:

    RW, Thank you for the references but im afraid either we misunderstand one another, or that you are confused about the various role of Church documents, and also Church dogma, and whats is classed as dogma.

    First of all on the Leo X issue, he is simply saying (in this one line of a much larger document) that it is incorrect to always say that the burning of heretics is against the will of the spirit, not a positive recommendation. This is the equivalent of today condemning the statement “Capital Punishment is always against the will of the Spirit.” Most Catholics, even those, such as myself, who do not support Capital Punishment, would agree with this statement. This would not be Church teaching encouraging Capital Punishment would it?

    To say that something is not necessarily always wrong is not to support it. Especially when one considers the political situation at the time. Heretics were often political factions, look at the Calvinists for instance, such heretical groups would spark political revolutions that would shake Europe and kill many. In this context, the killing of one heretic leader would be the equivalent of putting to death the leader of a political revolutionary. While it may not be right a lot of the time, and we would certainly shirk from it nowadays, it cannot also be said to be always wrong, especially in this context. So a measly one line statement such as this is not “Church teaching encouraging heretic burning”

    As for the other two statements, while we may see them as unwise and cruel moves, they are by no means anything but political moves by cowardly Popes. Dum diversas is a political move to get the Spanish and Portugese on the side of the papal states, and in contrast to pretty much every document ever on the subject of slavery. Compare for instance the crushing of the Jesuits a few centuries later, we would barely say “The Church taught that Jesuits were evil.” or “Church teaching said that persecuting Jesuits was good.” Also, on Paul IV’s statement on the Jews, this is once again a political move, and a poor one, but again is clearly not close to being doctrinal teaching, and b) when seen in the light of Church statements on the Jews, is a peculiar anomaly (I would recommend Rabbi Dalin’s Book on Pius XII who shows that papal pronunciations on the jewish people has been incredibly positive in spite of common assumptions)

    So, to get back to the point, what you have shown from these documents is one vague line, and two political statements dealing with small circumstances (i.e spain, and then the papal states) This has absolutely nothing to do with your original implication which was that Church doctrine changes and therefore in the past the ‘heretics’ have turned out to be right, and therefore we should be careful as Kennedy might turn out to be right. At no point did heresy turn out to be orthodoxy, and therefore when you have someone like Kennedy denying the Virgin birth, to look at one or two anomalous political documents and conclude from that that he might have a point is ludicrous. Just like now we would distinguish between the Pope’s letter on the Old Rite, and the declaration of the Immaculate Conception, we cant look at a line from a document that makes a concession to Spain, and compare that to Kennedy denying Church dogma, the comparison isnt even close!

  63. RW again says:

    I believe I have entered into debate in a fair and polite way.

    I have answered the points set before me.

    Perhaps this is the tactic now. If you can’t beat them, label them as trolls.

    Well, whatever works for you O’Neill.

    Don’t think people haven’t noticed that you have no answer to my point about Papal Bulls!

  64. D says:

    Dan: When dealing with the church, we would take the prodigal son back. That analogy is more apt for this situation.

    It was in fact the “good” son farther away at the end of the story, who criticized and disliked his brother, rather than the “disobediant” son. The wayward (heterodox?) son was closer to the father (God) in the end.

  65. RW again says:

    NY Sem…

    I get the difference between Dogma and other teachings (see somewhere above)

    I get that two of the Bulls were very political. That changes nothing. in fact, it merely reinforces that the church can get it wrong.

    Exsurge Domine clearly supports heretic burning, and the history of the times shows that they were clearly in favour of it happening on a large scale. Even if it weren’t on such a large scale, the fact that the Church got this one wrong and subsequently retracted proves my original point. End of.

    As for the rest of it, let me quote you:

    *As for the other two statements, while we may see them as unwise and cruel moves, they are by no means anything but political moves by cowardly Popes.*

    Yeah… That is the point!! They got it wrong.

    I was never confusing dogma with practice or lesser teaching, but I was trying to make the point that the church sometimes got it wrong. And you rather helped me out :)

  66. Charivari Rob says:

    Father Z. – “[Excuse me… but why would a supporter threaten to bomb what he supports?]”

    If that supporter is dumb enough to think they can discredit someone (or guarantee that they get what they want), that another party (if any) would be the suspect and it couldn’t possibly be traced back to them…

    After all, there are people out there who have been known to phone in a bomb threat to their airline when they’re running late getting to the airport – unpacking the whole baggage hold to be searched by the bomb squad sniffer dogs will delay the departure long enough for them to check in.

    Stupidity isn’t exclusive to any particular point on the philosophical spectrum.

    “”I have to tell you our collection on Sunday morning is usually $2,100 – last Sunday it was $5,400 – so that says a lot.” [indeed… what it says, however, is not to clear yet]”

    What it means is that when Father Howell and the Archbishop’s auditors go over the bank statements, there better have been a deposit of $5400 recorded on that Monday – or Father Kennedy might run the risk of ending up in the clink!

  67. terra says:

    Oh dear, the acatholicas (Australia’s liberal ‘catholic’ forum is called ‘catholica’ – today’s headline item is all about how homosexuality is ok) have discovered Fr Z! Though even ACatholica seems to think attacking AB Bathersby (who is after all on their side, having turned a blind eye to complaints for years and taking the softest and slowest possible path to resolving the situation).

    The difference between Fr Finigan and Fr Kennedy is a matter of the bleeding obbvious: one obeys church law and one doesn’t. As for being divisive, give me a break. Fr K has caused division too, as the ongoing complaints by catholics who actually want minor, unimportant things like valid baptisms and valid and liturgical abuse free masses demonstrates. In the end, public support is not the right test, adherence to the truth is.

    I do find it bizarre that liberals (and many conservatives) want to go for the personal attack. Fr Z’s place of residence and tasks is his affair – but in fact he has indicated that he is working on a thesis on a number of occasions. Fr Finigan’s blog, as far as I can see, has always been unfailingly polite even when he has tough things to say. Yes, traddies can be a little over the top in their comments at times. But so too liberals.

    Let’s hope the AB’s hostage negotiator proves effective…

  68. Dan says:

    “The wayward (heterodox?) son was closer to the father (God) in the end.”

    D

    The “wayward” son was, at the point when he returned to his Father [The Church}, no longer heterodox and wayward.

    The whole point of Christs parable “The Prodigal Son”, was that he repented of his sins and came back to his Father [The Church] He ceased living in sin and became obedient to the Father.

    Father Kennedy had chance after chance after chance, to come back to the “Father” and as long as he lives, he still does.

    He was gently admonished by his Ordinary repeatedly, and never decided to turn from the “husks that were not even good enough for the swine”, back to his Fathers house.

    The Prodigal Son did turn from his wayward ways, and came back to the Church.

    Father Kennedy, as of yet has not.

    When you say,”when dealing with the Church we would take the prodigal son back.”
    I could not agree with you more, if the prodigal son used his free will to turn back to the Church, as he did in the parable.

    No one can force Father Kennedy to believe in his soul that the Church is the only way.

    He must, like the prodigal son, by his own free will, come back, and then of course the “Father will welcome him with open arms and the “fatted calf”.

    Father Kennedy has not done that yet.

    We pray he does.

  69. NY seminarian says:

    RW

    But no-one is arguing the Church has never made mistakes! Thats a straw man argument! The debate is to what extent the Church has got it wrong. Saying the Church had made some bad political moves is one thing, saying the Church has got it wrong on dogmatic statements and its fundamental bases of its faith is quite another. No-one would seriously deny the first, but Kennedy denies the latter, which is much more serious, and also wrong.

    If you are only arguing that the Church has made unwise political moves, then you are preaching to the choir. But nothing you argue supports the idea that “Church teaching” in relation to dogma has ever changed.

  70. terry says:

    Traditionalists have never asserted that the Church always gets everything right. Indeed the whole traditionalist movement is based on the belief that the Church has got it mostly wrong for the last 40 years.

  71. RW again says:

    Okay, listen carefully.

    (because I am being misquoted and misunderstood here)

    *But no-one is arguing the Church has never made mistakes!*

    We agree on that

    *Saying the Church had made some bad political moves is one thing, saying the Church has got it wrong on dogmatic statements and its fundamental bases of its faith is quite another.*

    Yes. But I didn’t say that. At all. Anywhere.

    *No-one would seriously deny the first, but Kennedy denies the latter, which is much more serious, and also wrong.*

    I agree that Kennedy is wrong, wrong, wrong. But (and please listen to what I am actually saying here) that doesn’t make it okay to insult and intimidate him, and then to cry foul when another (albeit more orthodox) man is mildly criticised.

    *But nothing you argue supports the idea that “Church teaching” in relation to dogma has ever changed.*

    And, I haven’t advanced that idea, so… err… so, what exactly?

  72. RW again says:

    *Indeed the whole traditionalist movement is based on the belief that the Church has got it mostly wrong for the last 40 years.*

    And therein lies the irony which everyone except the trads can see!

    Goodnight all. I am tired.

  73. NY seminarian says:

    Very well RW, then you and i have nothing to debate! :-)

    Where this came from was that someone said there is no left and right, only orthodox and heterodox. You took him to task on this and said

    Point being, sometimes the ‘heterodox’ get it right. Tricky one

    This seemed to imply that sometimes the heterodox make heterodox statements which turn out to be right, i.e that Church teaching changes. I was saying this is not the case, and the points you raised were not church doctrine. If you havent argued that, then fair enough – debate over.

    I believe though the insult argument, is separate, and one im not really involved in. So on that note i sign out and get back to the work i shoudl be doing!! :-D God Bless!

  74. joy says:

    ubi caritas et amor Deus ibi est

    1. obedience
    2. humility
    3. submission to legitimate authority
    4. charity

    Mater Ecclesiae, ora pro nobis

  75. Tzard says:

    It’s currently 10 am Sunday in Brisbane. I wonder what happened?

  76. toomey says:

    One of the hallmarks of the liberal is his approval of the violent removal of opposition and or those with opposing viewpoints.

  77. D says:

    Dan: We can not judge Fr. Kennedy and what he has, or has not, done.

    Toomey: Way to generalize…it is comments like that that pit “Conservative” against “Liberal” that cause problems.

  78. Sharon says:

    Some excerpts from Peter Kennedy’s blog
    http://city-south-news.whereilive.com.au/blogs/story/we-wont-walk-away-from-the-church/

    Diana,

    In 325AD the Emporer Constantine in order to unify the empire turned to the new Christian religion and imposed upon the Bishops what’s known today as the Nicene creed. Those bishops like Arius who couldn’t agree with this creed were banished. Those who fell into line were feted.

    Peter Kennedy speaks as if the following was a dogma of the Church. The perpetual virginity of Mary is a dogma but Kennedy doesn’t mention that.

    As a woman, do you really believe that Jesus wasn’t born in a normal way through the birth canal but appeared miraculously outside of his Mother’s womb? Because this theology was formulated in a medieval context it was believed that if the hymen was broken a woman was no longer a virgin. Hence, Jesus needed to be born like a ray of light coming through a window.

    To Matthew
    About Piss Christ
    …however we object to those like the ultraconservative Catholics on the 7:30 Report who misunderstood Serronis’s work of art the Piss Christ describing our liturgy as urinating on Christ. Piss Christ is about God in Christ entering as Paul said into the depths of what it meant to be human – to experience brokeness, injustice, suffering.

    To Adam
    Over the years I have often expressed gratitude to the Archbishop for letting us be. He has said we have a right to exist as a liberal wing of the church

    To George
    In today’s Courier Mail I’ve said that the police have no intention of forceably removing me from the church unless I did something unlawful outside the church building which I have assured them I won’t.

    Prenna
    The Catholic church like every family is disfunctional. As a theologian said in the last century, “She is a whore but she is our Mother”.

    To Prescottem

    . I guess you are refering to the sacrament of baptism which we have always celebrated validly using the formula Father, Son and Holy Spirit but adding The God of Love who is Creator, Redeemer and Sustainer of Life in order to be more inclusive of our understanding of the mystery that we call God. There would be a handful of people who insisted only on The God of Love who is Creator, Redeemer and Sustainer of Life but as Father Eric Hodgesons a retired priest in Melbourne said recently that mass at St Mary’s is a valid mass, that baptisms are validly performed because if a duck looks like a duck, quacks like a duck and walks like a duck – it is a duck.

    So, I guess that Fr Eric Hodgeson’s opinion trumps that of Rome.

    To Margaret

    The all male heirarchical church is far removed from the spirit of the gospels. It excludes women from leadership, from priesthood on spurious grounds

  79. Brian says:

    When someone twists and distorts the Truth and misleads hundreds of believers into heretical ideas and rebelliously resists correction by the magisterium it is objectively, grossly offensive.

    When someone unjustly attacks a faithful priest for wisely and courageously adhering to the Truth and leading hundreds of believers to a greater understanding of the Truth, it is objectively, grossly offensive.

    When individuals are tenaciously and publically engaging in objectively, grossly offensive acts and defiantly resist correction, they open themselves to strong public criticism.

    It seems to me that strongly challenging those who try to tear down Fr. Finigan, and strongly challenging Fr. Kennedy for doing violence to the Church and his parishioners are totally consistent acts. I am not sure that I see the contradiction here. Both acts involve defending the Truth and challenging those who doggedly propagate false views, which, of course, should always occur in charity.

    Our Lord, of course, charitably referred to the Pharisees as “white washed tombs;” and St. Paul said that heretics insising on teh necessity of circumcision for salvation should castrate themselves.

  80. TerryN says:

    Dear Father, This is certainly a huge rabbit hole. When are you going to close comments? Or are you not home? The comment hve gone nuts.

  81. Dan says:

    “Dan: We can not judge Fr. Kennedy and what he has, or has not, done.”

    D
    I am not “judging” Father Kennedys soul, rather I am relating exactly what he has done in action himself in an outward and visible manner and those actions speak for themselves and are clearly heterodox.

    It is not “judging” someone when you know that they are using an invalid formula to administer a Sacrament and you call him on it, but rather a statement of charity.

    Would I be judging you if I were to say that you are a human being?

  82. Furlong says:

    This is apparently not the first time Ratsinger has tried to sack Kennedy (must be something in a name!!). The first time (at least 20 years ago) the previous Archbishop refused to sack Kennedy, and so now there is a new Archbishop who has Pell and Ratsinger as his bosses. Unfortunately the current Archbishop has made himself the meat in the sandwich between Ratsinger and Pell. And Kennedy’s popularity will only increase in this poorly managed process.

  83. Richard says:

    Our family drove past St Mary’s South Brisbane on the way to Mass and after seeing the crowds, the television crews, and the giant banners and tents, we couldn’t help thinking that after being sacked, Peter Kennedy, former priest of St Mary’s South Brisbane, will be looking for work!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p0ydUlBBqto&feature=channel_page

  84. Adam says:

    What an horrendous situation in Brisbane. That a bomb threat and that the bishop would end up in pieces is just amazing to say the least. I have not read that Kennedy condemned such a threat. Did he? The bishop has spoken. The ‘priest’ must go. This is a clear case of disobedience to the bishop. The Church has its structures and the bishop is the centre of the faith community. Kennedy obviously does not know his theology and is now setting himself before Christ and the Church. This is a breakaway group, much like the Jim Jones group years ago in S America. And they thought they were right and on to the path of God. How wring they were and how wrong are so many deluded people who get together and think they have found God and Christ. This is an obvious case of the bad apple ruining the whole basket.
    Kennedy who continues to defy the bishop stays there and says Mass. This is preposterous and he is leading the faithful there into stubborn error. Is this the way of the crucified Christ? No way. Christ on the cross forgave his persecutors and showed his love. Kennedy is defiant, calling the Dean of the cathedral a ‘scab’. Well, this is scandalous. Kennedy ought be stripped of his sacerdotal role and excommunicated.
    The bishop does not need a mediator. He ought close the parish, sell the church and restore unity and faith in another priest elsewhere. What a terrible mess is playing out there in Brisbane. But it will end in further tears and reciminations.
    Kennedy must go…exit, retire so that the true message of the Gospel can be proclaimed.
    It is sad that people believe in this man – he is a fraud and is leading people from God, from Christ and not to God and to the Lord.
    Luther thought he was right. Henry VIII thought he was right. Calvin thought he was right.
    All three were wrong and destroyed the fabric of the Church by their selfish antics.

  85. D says:

    Father Kennedy denies that any of his supporters did the bomb threat-and I believe him. If the Bishop is bringing in a mediator, obviously Fr Kennedy is doing something right.

  86. TLH says:

    “Father Kennedy denies that any of his supporters did the bomb threat”…yeah right!

    “If the Bishop is bringing in a mediator, obviously Fr Kennedy is doing something right.”…
    wrong…

  87. Susan Peterson says:

    So what happened there today? Did Fr. Kennedy leave as ordered? Did the new priest say mass?
    If not, next move is the archbishop’s. What is he going to do?

    I too am surprised that Fr. Z didn’t delete some of these comments and warn some people and close comments.

    Susan Peterson

  88. D says:

    Father Kennedy presided at the Eucharist and the new priest did not attend. The archbishop then said he still wanted mediation.

    If the Bishop is giving in, he must be having doubts as to his position.

    Pray…

  89. TJM says:

    Well I guess we know who the boss is there – the asylum and its inmates. Too bad, the good Catholics of Brisbane must be really suffering. Tom

  90. vynette says:

    TJM,

    It’s interesting you mentioned the word “asylum” because there is a disturbing parallel to the case of Father Kennedy and it occurred exactly 80 years ago. It occurred in the same circumstances, and in the same place, with the Archbishop of Brisbane also playing one of the central roles.

    It involves one Thomas Michael Wixted, a born and bred Catholic who, at the age of about 40, began to examine and then to question the doctrines of the Church. He visited the then Archbishop of Brisbane, Sir James Duhig, and challenged the Archbishop over the doctrine of the “Virgin Birth” and the “Divinity of Jesus” just as Father Kennedy has now done.

    While Father Kennedy has been “sacked” for questioning the teachings of the Church, the exact same offence by Thomas Wixted resulted in his mental competence being questioned by a priestly relative and his subseqent incarceration in a “lunatic asylum,” as such institutions were at that time designated, and declared legally dead, as was also the procedure at that time. He spent more than twenty years in the Goodna Lunatic Asylum – an experience from which he obviously never recovered.

  91. dcs says:

    We can not judge Fr. Kennedy and what he has, or has not, done.

    We can’t judge him but we can certainly judge what he has and has not done. When a priest publicly casts doubt on the Virgin Birth we can and should say that it is wrong. Likewise when a priest blesses homosexual couples, allows all sorts of liturgical shenanigans, uses an invalid formula for baptism, we can and should say that it is wrong. I’m not trying to make a laundry list of one priest’s issues with the Church, only pointing out that we can and should judge his actions (and non-actions), especially when they are so egregious.

  92. Henry Edwards says:

    We can not judge Fr. Kennedy and what he has, or has not, done.

    The primary dictionary meaning of “judge” is

    … to form an opinion about through careful weighing of evidence.

    Given the copious information about him that Fr. Kennedy himself has placed on the public record, one might also form an opinion about any Catholic who thinks it insufficient to judge him.