Please use the sharing buttons! Thanks!
In 1991 Joseph Card. Ratzinger gave a talk to American Bishops called “Conscience and Truth”. This talk is useful today, especially in the context of two major controversies that are going on as I write, namely, the defense of the proper definition of marriage and, of course, the attacks on the consciences of Catholics and others by the Obama Administration, which is trying to undermine the our first liberties.
The talk is longish, so I will break this into three parts. The first PODCAzT will include my preliminary comments and the first part of the talk, “A Conversation On The Erroneous Conscience And First Inferences”.
In my preliminary comments I contextualizes one of my motives for giving you these audio projects. An openly homosexual priest (HERE and HERE and HERE) from St. John’s Abbey in Collegeville, MN, Fr. Robert Pierson, OSB, was inexplicably allowed to give a talk at a parish in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, in which he gave a distorted vision of conscience that was designed to justify for his audience voting against the amendment to the state’s constitution which would define marriage as being between one man and one woman. Several things bothered me about that talk, including his cherry picking of quotes from the Catechism of the Catholic Church to support his false view of primacy of conscience over and against the Magisterium, all the while ignoring subsequent paragraphs that directly contradicted his position. He also quoted Joseph Ratzinger from back in 1967 when he said
“Over the pope as expression of the binding claim of ecclesiastical authority, there stands one’s own conscience which must be obeyed before all else, even if necessary against the requirement of ecclesiastical authority.”
Here is the video of the mendacious talk:
His facebook page.
Sadly, people like Pierson can toss those errors out in a few words and it takes many more words to correct the errors.
What is so mendacious about quoting the 1967 Ratzinger is that, afterwards, Ratzinger entirely reversed and clarified his understanding of conscience. Honest people think things through, grow up, and, when wrong, change their minds. It might have been Pierson’s smarmy smugness as he tried to elicit giggles from the willing crowd that spurred me to dig out the well known 1991 talk Ratzinger gave in 1991. In any event, that was one of my motivations for making this.
Another motivation is obviously the attacks on our first liberties by the administration of The First Gay President, Barack Hussein Obama and his minion the pro-abortion catholic Kathleen Sebelius, HHS Secretary and issuer of the infamous HHS mandate, which runs rough-shod over the 1st amendment and the consciences of American citizens. The Obama Adminstration is trying to violate us through denial of freedom of conscience. If we are going to fight against this violation as Catholics with voices raised in the public square, we should have some firm ideas about what conscience is and what it isn’t and how conscience and external authority of any kind interact.
Therefore, my three-part PODCAzT on Joseph Ratzinger’s 1991 talk on “Conscience and Truth”.
NOTE: In my podcast I say that Pierson gave his talk at a Catholic parish in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. That was an assumption I made. I am not sure where he gave it, but it seems to have been organized for Catholics at a Methodist church in the Twin Cities suburb Edina. But the video (above) clearly shows him, dressed as a priest, saying absurd things and bringing down derision on the Church from his audience. Those who posted the video and text seem to have been purposely cagey about where the talk took place, which led me to suspect that it was at a Catholic parish in defiance of Archbishop Nienstedt.
To listen, click the arrow thingy, below.
My PODCAzT feed is HERE.