New Anglican Archbishop of Canterbury – a new hope!

Via the best Catholic weekly in the UK, The Catholic Herald

Archbishop Vincent Nichols of Westminster has welcomed the appointment of the Rt Rev Justin Welby, Bishop of Durham, as the next Archbishop of Canterbury.

Writing on behalf of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, he said: “I warmly welcome the news of the appointment of the current Bishop of Durham, the Right Reverend Justin Welby as the next Archbishop of Canterbury.


The Rt Rev Welby, 56, an Old Etonian who studied history and law at Trinity College, Cambridge, worked for 11 years in the oil industry. [He had an actual job!]

He was a member of Holy Trinity Brompton, the home of the Alpha Course, [ugh] when he decided to become an Anglican minister. He was ordained at the age of 36.

He was been [sic] Bishop of Durham for just over a year.

At the press conference this morning, he said he had “learned so much from the Catholic Church”, particularly on Catholic social teaching. He added that his spiritual director was a Catholic monk. [… okay…]

The archbishop-elect also joked that he had “a better barber and spen[t] more on razors than Rowan Williams”.

I call upon the new Anglican Archbishop to publish, as soon as possible, Romanorum coetibus

The hopes of so many depend on it.

As you will remember, Romanorum coetibus is that document whereby our Anglican sisters and brothers will make provisions for disaffected catholics, offer them a safe-haven from the patriarchal oppression of Rome while preserving intact their most hallowed traditions, such as clay cups, guitars, abortion clinic escort nuns, hand holding, the dream of female deacons, etc.

What a sign of hope this could be for the writers and readers of The Tablet!

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Burke says:

    Re. Romanorum coetibus: the problem is, Father, that they don’t want to leave … & I’m pretty sure nobody else really wants them!

  2. StWinefride says:

    Fr Z says “He was a member of Holy Trinity Brompton, the home of the Alpha Course, [ugh]”

    I have a funny story about Holy Trinity Brompton. When I lived in London, many moons ago, I had a French friend who was Catholic. I was away from the Faith at the time, she knew this and so invited me to come to church with her. I asked her where she worshipped and she said Holy Trinity Brompton. I knew of the Brompton Oratory (next door) and asked her why she didn’t go there as it’s Catholic and Holy Trinity Brompton is Anglican. She said her husband’s uncle (also French) said that it was OK for them to go to Holy Trinity because the service was not unlike a Catholic Mass so it’s alright for them to go there instead – hmm – no comment!

    Because Holy Trinity Brompton is tucked away and not very visible from Brompton Road, we arranged to meet on the top step of ….. the Brompton Oratory! The place that as a Catholic I should have been taken! Anyway, it wasn’t until years later when I did eventually come back to the Faith (Deo Gratias!) and upon returning to the Oratory (I was by then living abroad) that this episode came back to my mind and I couldn’t believe that I had been so close to “Home” and had been led away … by a Catholic!

    Moral of the story: if Catholics don’t know their faith they are sooooo easily led away from the One, True Church!

  3. StWinefride says:

    P.S. I forgot to mention above that my French friend’s husband’s uncle was a Catholic Priest!

  4. Melania says:

    Fr. Z: I note that you don’t like the Alpha Course. I was actually considering the Alpha Course for Catholics for my group. Now, I’m hesitating. Can you explain why you don’t like it? I don’t want to spend the money if it’s bad. Thanks.

  5. Stephen D says:

    According to today’s Times, the ‘Catholic monk and spiritual director’ is, “a Roman Catholic lay oblate, or monk, at Salisbury Priory, an Anglo-Catholic Benedictine community”? Perhaps an ex-Catholic?

  6. Phil_NL says:

    Well, it looks like Welby is in favor of women bishops, so I’d say there’s quite a bit of room for incorrigable liberals to swim the Thames. If fact, if they are truely incorrigable, he’s more than welcome to all our pretend-priestesses.

    More to the point though, is that I can see some more Anglicans swimming the Tiber because of it. Williamson managed to delay the inevtiable breech for a decade, but I very much doubt his successor can do the same – even if he has much better management skills.

  7. anilwang says:

    WRT Romanorum coetibus,

    Given that dissedent priests don’t much care for either the Catholic or Anglican Liturgy.

    I’d like to propose the following outline of an Romanorum coetibus liturgy:

    * Opening Liturgical Dance Entrance
    * First Reading from the National Catholic Reporter
    * Responsorial Hymn from the Rigvedas or Hymn to Ishtar
    * Second Reading from New York Times
    * Gospel Mantra
    * Gospel Readings from Eckhart Tolle or Neale Donald Walsch or Book of Shadows
    * Sermon on Political issues of the day
    * Prayer of the Unfaithful

    * Presentation of the Oversized Puppets (presenters must either polka dance or riverdance to the front)
    * Blessing the gifts by everyone in the parish
    * Social Justice Acclamations
    * Gaia’s Prayer (reciting the Our Mother)
    * The High Five of Peace
    * Breaking of the rice crackers by the presiding clown
    * Passing around the cup of grape juice or vodka if that’s you’re preference.
    * People process in lines to the front of the church warehouse and dance around the altar
    * Discussion Group After Communion

    * Final Blessing from all parishioners to all other parishioners
    * Dismissal (Given by chief clown presider or priestess, usually by saying, “We’re done done. Please stay for coffee and donuts.”)

  8. scotus says:

    Perhaps the Anglican who wrote this – Desmond Tillyer (Bishops in Communion) – and the liberal Catholics he appeals to could get together and form their own Church:
    “The wider ecumenical context is of course Vatican II. All such documents published since the Second Vatican Council have inevitably been deeply influenced by that Council. One of that Council’s intentions was to flatten the pyramid model of Church authority with the infallible Pope at the top and descending grades of Christian responsibility, each dependent to and beholden upon the layers above it, and replace it with a conciliar model, akin to the late medieval aspirations of the Conciliar Movement, in which the Pope acts as the focus of the Church’s teaching and unity with all members of the Church playing their part in discernment, articulation and reception.
    This was in fact a deliberate attempt to reform the practice of infallibility, universal jurisdiction and autocracy. This devolved authority with its concentric rings indicating mutual accountability was repeatedly promulgated by the late medieval Ecumenical Councils, restricting the power and authority of the Papacy which in turn always broke free of conciliar constraints and returned to its old, corrupt ways. This is what has happened to Vatican II. Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI have undermined and ruined the Council’s intentions and the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Council was rightly called a wake not a feast by Professor Hans Kung. We are back to the bad old days of absolutism and autocracy and the requirement of blind obedience.
    As an Anglo-Catholic, inspired by the vision of collegiality at Vatican II, I hope that our fellow Roman Catholic liberals, also inspired by the same vision, will take heed how easily it can be corrupted when divorced from service to the Church as a whole, not simply its koinonia.”

  9. wmeyer says:

    Melania, I know that Fr. Z is in transit home this morning. If you google on “alpha course” and add words such as criticism, or errors, you will find much. One criticism I have seen is that the Alpha Course adds in some pantheism, and in a number of areas, such as sin, takes positions contrary to Church teaching.

  10. vetusta ecclesia says:

    The story of the French priest is interesting – the French never seem to “get” that Anglicanism is not a version of Catholicism like Gallicanism.

  11. jhayes says:

    Apart from hearing occasional mentions of the Alpha Course I know nothing about it.

    However, they have quite a few endorsements from Catholic bishops who have encouraged their own priests to use it:

  12. Patrick901 says:

    Does anyone know if the Queen can actually say no to a nomination for the Archbishop of Canterbury, or is it merely a procedural thing that she has to say yes to?

  13. Banjo pickin girl says:

    jhayes, the description of the Alpha Course in wikipedia is fairly accurate. I would go beyond that and say it is a typical Protestant style course where everyone’s view is equal and there is no true authority so they end up wrangling about minutiae with no resolution. To teach a “mere Christianity” course with no reference to doctrine based on tradition always has an unhappy result.

  14. Banjo pickin girl says:

    Sorry, jhayes, I am in perpetual moderation (sorta like perpetual adoration only slower). i hope you go back and see my comment on the Alpha course.

  15. Sid Cundiff in NC says:

    Anglicans don’t need to swim the Tiber. The Greatest-Bridge-Builder has already built a bridge for them called “Anglicorum coetibus”

    I’m glad Anilwang brought his wit with him! I posted, with full credit, his Order of Worship on my Facebook page.

  16. Sissy says:

    wmeyer, Melania, I understand that there is a Catholic version of Alpha which purports to remedy the original errors. I haven’t used it, so I can’t recommend it.

  17. wmeyer says:

    Sissy, there are also criticisms of the Catholic version. I’ve not seen either.

  18. pelerin says:

    Interesting to read the comment by Sissy that there is a ‘Catholic’ version of Alpha. Having seen the posters only on Anglican churches in England I was surprised and confused when I learned that both French Cardinals had praised the course and that many churches there now run the Alpha course. Cardinal Barbarin, Primate of the Gauls, is quoted as saying that it was ‘a wonderful gift we have received from England.’

  19. Sissy says:

    wmeyer, thanks for the info about Catholic Alpha. I was unaware of that.

    Lisa P: without sovereignty, there is only lawlessness and chaos. It can’t be moral for a government to subject it’s people to uncertain justice or a complete lack of stability and security which is what open borders would produce. I’m very sympathetic to the plight of poor people who want to come here for the hope of a better life. But it disturbs me that our Bishops never seem to address the fact that these illegal immigrants are breaking the law. Is it moral to encourage people to break the laws of another country? Shouldn’t they be counseled to enter the country in a lawful manner? That never seems to be part of the equation.

  20. Denis says:

    Given that the liberal parishes tend to have the ugly Churches, Romanorum Coetibus would be a good way of getting rid of some post-Vatican II eyesores. The minorities in those seceding parishes who want to remain Catholic can build smaller but more beautiful churches for their own use. In my parish, I’m quite confident that a majority would vote to join the Episcopalians or the Lutherans if they were required by our Archbishop to be even slightly more traditional or orthodox. I’d be very happy with a smaller, more modest, but more traditionally inclined church and liturgy.

  21. StWinefride says:

    Vetusta ecclesia,

    Thank you for pointing that out – I didn’t know about Gallicanism.

    Re the Alpha course, the only way I would even look at a Catholic version is if it had been adapted for Catholic use by the SSPX!

    “For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own likings, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander into myths”
    2 Timothy 4:3

  22. mike cliffson says:

    Lisa P
    From obiter dicta by priests mostly, some personal experience, and Catholic authors, extend this idea of anglicanism to French and Italian clergy .Moreover, It would seem to have a historical home in Rome (All?half? some?of them For 500? Some of the time?occassionally?) but not , I think? any Popes ever.
    Hence a number of things.
    This is internet: there are several commenters, such as suburban banshee, who know well things I partly know wrongly, and add better founded history.
    Someone must have researched this. Any comers?

  23. mike cliffson says:

    sorry, my bad, meant to say from French to Spanish and Itallian clergy.

  24. mike cliffson says:

    Meant to put @ Vetusta ecclesia,

  25. thefeds says:

    Please, please, please let them take the giant puppet thingies with them!

  26. asperges says:

    Well I for one wish him well, and I am no supporter of the Anglican Church. He replaces a man wholly unsuited to the post at Canterbury who has done immense damage with ultra-liberal views and under an utter lack of leadership. I cannot ever remember hear Williams (eg on Radio) ever speak of anything more than social issues, rarely if ever on religion. He was well informed of Shariah law, I seem to remember.

    It may seem to many abroad that the instant obliteration of the Church of England is a good idea. If all its members came over to Rome, that would be good; but this is unlikely. In this pagan country where little religion survives at all – far, far less than in the US – some sort of national church can still connect people with religion however vaguely. The Catholic church here is small in comparison: whether its influence is greater is debatable – probably people tend to listen more to us on balance at least on matters of religion.

    Mr Welby might be the very means whereby there is more movement towards Rome. God knows. Obviously his presumed views are not in line with Rome, but he is overall more conservative than his woolly predecessor. He seems to believe in God, which is a start. (Some may remember the BBC ‘Yes Minister’ sketch on the appointment of a new bishop years ago, where this was deemed optional).

    To most of the UK population, the matter is of little interest. He seems a nice chap, personable, hopefully with a sense of humour. The Establishment presumably approves him. Whether the leaking prematurely of his appointment was back-stage politics it is difficult to know: perhaps it blocked someone worse.

  27. Katheryn says:

    The Alpha course is actually fairly anti-Catholic. It throws put terms like “Lords Supper” and talks of how Jesus was the final priest, and His was the final Sacrafice. Then, there are these small group discussions after videos and lay “leaders” lead questions. The real kicker is that these leaders then go on to lay hands on the participants and command the Holy Spirit to come down so that the participant might pray in tongues, and everyone should.
    It’s just another attempt at the Catholic Church to become more Protestant looking. It’s emotionalism and entirely devoid of sacraments (except baptism, but Alpha rejects infant baptism and says the water itself is only a symbol). If your church offers Alpha, call the priest immeadately and inform him of its heretical content.

  28. LorrieRob says:

    Alpha is an excellent course for seekers and others who are open to a deeper experience of the Holy Spirit. It is ecumenical and is in no way anti- Catholic. Like all things, the effective presentation of the course materials including the invitation to experience the scriptural spiritual gifts such as praying in tongues spoken of by Paul is dependent on the maturity of the group leaders and certainly could fall prey to emotionalism but it need not. Properly presented, the program has the potential to ignite the fire of the spirit moving the individual to a real encounter with Christ as Pope Benedict speaks of. From that point, catechesis can begin to inform, ground and guide. alpha s only concerned to help ignite the fire by exploring the great questions of life in a social setting that looks at the basic Christian answers…What CS Lewis called Mere Christianity.

    As for the new ABC…I’m with Father Z… I left the Episcopal Church because of it’s apostasy… The liberal catholic(small c on purpose) would feel completely at home…

  29. Katheryn says:

    I just don’t see how the Alpha course has any place at all in a Catholic Church seeing as the fundamental understanding of who God is and what the Sacraments are for our lives is different. Alpha denies the the Eucharist as being Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Our Lord; the source and summit of our Faith. To assert that people will become better Catholics by facilitating obvious heresy in addition to denying the One True Faith is irresponsible.

  30. jhayes says:

    Katheryn, can it really be heretical if nine Catholic bishops plus the preacher to the Papal household have endorsed it?

    Perhaps the confusion is that it is intended as a very basic introduction to Christianity, not a detailed explanation of the teachings of the Church.

    As Fr. Cantalamessa, the Papal Preacher says, “it doesn’t claim to lead people from beginning to end in faith; only to help them get acquainted with it, to foster a personal encounter with Jesus, leaving it to other Church departments to develop the newly rekindled faith.”

    See here or the endorsements:

  31. jhayes says:

    Christlife is n apostolate of the Archdiocese of Baltimore.

    The Alpha Course

    ChristLife no longer runs the Alpha course since we have developed the Discovering Christ course.
    We want to express our gratitude and honor for the Alpha course. Alpha is a most remarkable evangelizing course that has impacted millions of people worldwide. For years we trained Catholics to use this ecumenical course and ran it ourselves. We have seen thousands come to new or renewed faith in Christ through it in Catholic parishes in the U.S. and internationally.

    We at ChristLife and the many Catholic parishes that use Alpha owe a lot to our Anglican brothers and sisters at Holy Trinity Brompton, London, England, where Alpha was developed. Alpha is a great testimony to Christian unity, as many different traditions use this course. It is helping many parishes evangelize. We thank God for it.

    Since we recognize that some dioceses and parishes will not use the Alpha course, we felt it was important to develop a Catholic encounter course that would support those parishes in the mission of evangelization.

    If you are interested in running the Alpha course, please visit Alpha USA.

  32. LorrieRob says:

    Alpha covers the following topics: 1. Who is Jesus? 2. Why did Jesus die? 3. How can we have faith? 4. why and how do I pray? 5. Why and how should I read the Bible? 6. how does God guide us? 7. who is the Holy Spirit? 8. what does the Holy Spirit Do? 9. How can I be filled with he Holy Spirit? 10. How can I rest evil? 11. Why and how should I tell others? 12. Does God heal today? 13. What about the Church? 14. How can I make the most of the rest of my life?

    There is absolutely no denial of the Catholic understanding of the Holy Eucharist. An understanding of the Eucharist is something that comes after a person is a believer and is open and ready for instruction. ALPHA is for the inquiry stage. It leaves off where the core of the RCIA teaching on the Sacraments would pick up.

    I have not personally attended Alpha but did attend an Alpha conference in 2009 and have watched all of the videos and read the materials for the 14 sessions. The program materials at that time at least were entirely orthodox… Much to my surprise actually…now I am sure the actual presentation may not always conform to the authorized content but if it does, I thought it was excellent.

  33. oldcanon2257 says:

    jhayes says:
    9 November 2012 at 8:16 pm

    Katheryn, can it really be heretical if nine Catholic bishops plus the preacher to the Papal household have endorsed it?

    History indicated that a majority of bishops did endorse Arianism at one time as well. In the 1960’s, the Dutch bishops also endorsed the infamous Dutch Catechism. Later in the same decade, the rebellious Canadian bishops also issued the Winnipeg Statement dissenting from and subverting Pope Paul VI’s “Humanae Vitae”. Just saying… :)

    Looking at the listing of those prelates endorsing Alpha (Sean O’Malley, Walter Kasper, William Keeler, et al.) I’m surprised the names of Christoph Schonborn, Roger Mahoney, William Morris, et al. aren’t on there. :)

  34. jhayes says:

    Interesting quote from the ChristLife site:

    “What is true first evangelization? In July 2007 Pope Benedict XVI clarified to a group of priests what the central proclamation of the Christian people should be:

    “Christianity is not a highly complicated collection of so many dogmas that it is impossible for anyone to know them all; it is not something exclusively for academicians who can study these things, but it is something simple: God exists and God is close in Jesus Christ. Thus, to sum up, Jesus Christ himself said that the Kingdom of God had arrived. Basically, what we preach is one, simple thing. All the dimensions subsequently revealed are dimensions of this one thing and all people do not have to know everything but must certainly enter into the depths and into the essential. In this way, the different dimensions also unfold with ever increasing joy.”

  35. Southern Catholic says:

    preacher to the Papal household have endorsed it

    That isn’t a good selling point, I heard the man speak at Samford earlier this year and he far from orthodox. All he talked about was “unity” and how great Martin Luther was.

  36. jhayes says:

    Southern Catholic wrote “I heard the man speak at Samford earlier this year and he far from orthodox”

    He has been the Preacher to the Papal Household since 1980 and is the only person allowed to preach to the Pope. It doesn’t seem likely that JP2 and Benedict would have kept him in that job if he held unorthodox views.

    Benedict has also praised Martin Luther. See his 2011 speech at Erfurt

  37. The Masked Chicken says:

    Talk about the choices we make in life…I was lying down for the night ready to get some sleep when I thought I would look at Fr. Z.’s blog for a minute. I read some of the comments about the Alpha Course which piqued my interest. Then, I began to read comments like:

    “The real kicker is that these leaders then go on to lay hands on the participants and command the Holy Spirit to come down so that the participant might pray in tongues, and everyone should.”

    “Alpha is an excellent course for seekers and others who are open to a deeper experience of the Holy Spirit. It is ecumenical and is in no way anti- Catholic. Like all things, the effective presentation of the course materials including the invitation to experience the scriptural spiritual gifts such as praying in tongues spoken of by Paul is dependent on the maturity of the group leaders and certainly could fall prey to emotionalism but it need not. Properly presented, the program has the potential to ignite the fire of the spirit moving the individual to a real encounter with Christ as Pope Benedict speaks of.”

    “Katheryn, can it really be heretical if nine Catholic bishops plus the preacher to the Papal household have endorsed it?”

    “As Fr. Cantalamessa, the Papal Preacher says, “it doesn’t claim to lead people from beginning to end in faith; only to help them get acquainted with it, to foster a personal encounter with Jesus, leaving it to other Church departments to develop the newly rekindled faith.”

    Since the Alpha Course is not the direct topic of this post, I will not get involved in a long back and forth about it. All I will say is that I know its kind very well. I have spent the last 16 years studying Pentecostal Phenomena throughout history (how I got started is a story in itself) and specifically the modern manifestations in more detail than almost anyone (I mean that, literally), combining my expertise in historical studies, neuroscience, and the sciences. I waded through treatise, papers, archival evidence (there are 30,000 articles and books on the subject in the Jones bibliography – although many repeat the same things). I looked at photographs of Agnes Ozman’s attempts at xenographia from the Topeka Bible College in 1901 (she said she was writing Chinese); I read the news reports from Frank Bartlemann about the Asusa Street Mission; I tracked down original sources from the beginning. I had access to a major secular research library and three major theological libraries in the States (Catholic, Methodist, and Lutheran). I spent years tracking down every lead possible to understand the phenomena.

    In modern times (1980’s to the present), The Third Wave Pentecostals have manifested something called, “Holy Laughter,” and as an expert on the neurodynamics of Laughter, I would be one of the experts possibly called in to examine the phenomenon, should the Holy See ever decide to do so. I know the day that the modern Pentecostal manifestations began, who started it, what they were seeking, how it progressed historically to become what it is, today, what the phenomena are, properly interpreted, instead of what people have claimed they are, etc. I could easily write a Ph.D dissertation on the subject. The sad thing is that such a true assessment wasn’t even possible until 1985, so most of the research and theological commentary before that is mostly conjecture and seeing what people wanted to see. The history is fascinating and has never been properly interpreted from a Catholic point of view (although there is one Protestant theologian who is on the right track).

    The Church made a tentative judgment on the Charismatic Renewal, as it manifested itself in the Catholic Church, in 1967 (although its major proponent in Rome, Cardinal Suenens could not understand what the phenomenon of being, “Slain in the Spirit,” was) and the 1976 book by McDonnell and Montague, cited below, seemed to make it acceptable. As I say, a true understanding was not even possible until 1985 (too late at night to get into why) and I know of no one in the Church who has spent the time to really study the phenomena without theological presuppositions (sad, but true and I have read almost everything available). It simply is not what it is normally thought to be is and I am reasonably sure of my findings (at least as sure as I should be given any tentative theological investigation not yet examined by the Church).

    In fact, when I reached my conclusions, I did what anyone should do – I presented my findings to my spiritual director- a hard-headed Dominican, who, himself, was a Charismatic. If you know anything about the Catholic side of the movement, there is a famous book, Christian Initiation and Baptism in the Holy Spirit: Evidence from the First Eight Centuries by Kilian McDonnell and George T Montague, SM, that is often cited and was my director’s reference. After I presented my findings, my director said, “that is the best presentation I have every heard.” He was so impressed that when I told him I was writing a book on the subject, he offered to type the manuscript. Unfortunately, my health has made such an undertaking very difficult. I then presented the same arguments to a very orthodox Jesuit theologian to whom I was recommended and he, also, agreed that I should publish my findings. If a Dominican and a Jesuit can agree on something…

    I’m just trying to present some bona fides because I know what I say will be controversial. The topic of this post is not Pentecostal theology, so I don’t want to start a rabbit hole, but it important to making a sound judgment about the Alpha Course, since a large part of the English program leads to the, “Baptism of the Holy Spirit,” as its final end.

    My points:

    1. How can a bishop properly judge a program when he does not have an adequate understanding of its nature?

    2. I know Fr. Cantalamessa’s writings on the subject of the Holy Spirit. While I have a great respect for many things he says on many topics, in this area (and he has written a book for instance, entitled, “Sober Intoxication of the Spirit: Filled With the Fullness of God,”) he really is starting from the common incomplete understanding.

    3. I cannot speak much about the small group encounters, although I have had friends who have participated in such things, except that it, usually, winds up being a case of the blind leading the blind. These sort of “faith sharing” groups simply did not exist in the early days of the Church and they are sort of like a Catholic group therapy session, if I may be a little facetious.

    4. The quote from Christlife, above, has very little to do with the content of the program or is misleadingly connected to it (happens often in Charismatic circles).

    5. While this specific program is not likely to harm many people, I know of similar programs that have harmed people – badly – so badly as to, basically, destroy the person’s life. I speak from first-hand experience and I know a few such people. For most people, this will not be the case, however.

    6. While there is no question that such programs provide a spiritual encounter, it also imports a certain distortion in the Faith that is present from the beginning. How it does this is found within an understanding of the nature of the Pentecostal phenomenon.

    All in all, Eucharistic adoration, sound spiritual reading, mortification, and an ordered prayer life is likely to be of more benefit to growth in holiness.

    Now that I’ve made a fool of myself (and believe me, there is so much more I could say), I will retire, again – one and a half hours, later, after making a comment that most will read and dismiss. I just thought I should say something.

    The Chicken

  38. jhayes says:

    Chicken, Charismatic Renewal is live and well in the Archdiocese of Boston. It has its own website at

    and describes a typical weekly prayer service:

    “A typical Charismatic Prayer Meeting begins with uplifting and joyful singing of songs of praise to God, followed by extended vocal thanksgiving and praise (recounting the deeds) of God and Jesus and calling on the Holy Spirit to come and lead the gathering. Songs may continue and become more worshipful and reflective leading to a time of reverent silence followed by manifestation of some of the gifts of the Spirit, such as, speaking or singing in tongues (divinely inspired personal or communal prayer without words), prophecy (speaking God’s message to the people gathered), or word of knowledge (divinely inspired knowledge concerning a person or situation).”

  39. asperges says:

    @Masked Chicken: Having just woken up and read your post, and as one who instinctively mistrusts everything about the Charismatic movement, your phrase “It simply is not what it is normally thought to be” will keep me going all day.

    I am sure many of us would be fascinated to know more of your studies (though not here, before I am slapped down).

  40. oldcanon2257 says:

    jhayes says:
    9 November 2012 at 10:21 pm

    He has been the Preacher to the Papal Household since 1980 and is the only person allowed to preach to the Pope. It doesn’t seem likely that JP2 and Benedict would have kept him in that job if he held unorthodox views.

    I don’t know anything at all about the inner working of the Curia, but realistically, I would guess that orthodoxy is but a minor factor out of the many factors which drive a curial appointment. Curial politics is probably the major driving force of virtually all appointments. It would be too naive to believe otherwise (else, we would probably have super-saints running the Curia (and the dioceses), and the Church Militant wouldn’t be having the problems we have had, especially for the last 40-50 years). How else, do you think, Abp. Piero Marini managed to be Papal Master of Ceremonies for such a long time given his horrendous “vision of liturgical renewal” (his words – title of his book)? Given how dignified Cardinal Wojty?a of Krakow was vested at pontifical functions, somehow I doubt Blessed JP II truly liked those strange-looking chasubles he had to wear (thanks to Piero Marini) at various papal Masses in the latter part of his pontificate. Granted the late pope might not have liked traditional papal items like the camauro or the fanon, but nobody in their right mind would even consider liking those comical (not a typo, not coNical, I mean coMical) chasubles Piero Marini was pushing. Abp. Marini was kept around though, lasted 20 years under 2 popes… how do you think he managed?

    In recent decades many prelates both inside the Roman Curia and outside (local particular Churches – diocesan) weren’t known to be too orthodox either (and that’s an understatement), but most unfortunately for one reason or another (again, mostly having to do with church politics) they were tolerated. Even an egregious case like Bp. William Morris of Toowoomba, Australia was allowed to go on for close to 20 years before it was finally dealt with. Personally I blame collegiality, but I know that’s just oversimplifying things.

    Just saying that don’t gauge the orthodoxy of some prelate or priest based solely on his curial function and the length of that appointment.

    I pray that major curial appointments during the pontificate of our beloved Papa Benedict are, for better or worse, actually his personal initiatives and not unduly influenced by various factions there trying to push their own agenda. Please pray for our Holy Father, he has a lot of “enemies within” trying to undermine his vision (especially his liturgical vision) for the Church.

  41. Ellen says:

    I can only speak for myself. I’ve been in the presence of people who speak in tongues and have been slain in the spirit only a few times and in all the times I was there, I wanted to run away. Frankly, it scares me to death.

  42. AnAmericanMother says:

    I likewise can only speak for myself.
    I have the spiritual sensitivity of a locomotive boiler, but I do have a well-developed “bs meter” from years of watching lawyers and witnesses do their thing.
    Whenever I have been around the charismatics, my meter bounced off the peg. Maybe it’s my “frozen chosen” upbringing, with its suspicion of “enthusiasm” (what they used to call the Methodists) but I’m reminded of teenagers fooling around with a Ouija board, or New-Agers. Same emotional “high” combined with vagueness about what is going on. And in my misspent hippie youth I read cards and cast horoscopes, and I saw the same kind of enthusiasm among that crowd.
    I’m sure many are well-meaning and many honestly believe, but I don’t like it at all.
    Chicken, that sounds like a book that needs to be written. It would be nice to have some solid analysis rather than feelings and instincts. I will pray earnestly for your health.

  43. StWinefride says:

    Ah yes, Capuchin Father Raniero Cantalamessa. Preacher to the Papal Household. Who in the presence of Pope John Paul II, at the Good Friday Liturgy in 2002, had this to say:

    “…other religions are not merely tolerated by God…but positively willed by Him as an expression of the inexhaustible richness of His grace and His will for everyone to be saved”. (CNS, 1/04/2002)

    Thank goodness I have some household chores to do…

  44. acardnal says:

    SNWinefride, I would add “thank goodness Cantalamessa is not a bishop, a curial official or the Pope”!

  45. acardnal says:

    sic: StWinefrede

  46. jhayes says:

    St. Winefride, three years later he was reconfirmed by Benedict as Preacher to the Papal Household. Ten years later, he still holds that position. Must be doing something right.

    “In 1980 he was appointed by Pope John Paul II Preacher to the Papal Household and confirmed in that position by pope Benedict XVI in 2005. In this capacity he preaches a weekly sermon in Advent and Lent in the presence of the Pope, the cardinals, bishops and prelates of the Roman Curia and the general superiors of religious orders.”

    You can read his Lent 2012 sermons at:

  47. jhayes says:

    An American Mother wrote:

    I’m sure many are well-meaning and many honestly believe, but I don’t like it at all.

    I’ve never been attracted to charismatic services but they are meaningful to some people. That’s probably why the Archdiocese of Boston sponsors the Charismatic Renewal Ministry whose website I linked in an earlier post.

    Speaking in tongues has a long history in the Church. Paul said in 1 Corinthians 12:

    there are different workings but the same God who produces all of them in everyone.
    To each individual the manifestation of the Spirit is given for some benefit.
    To one is given through the Spirit the expression of wisdom; to another the expression of knowledge according to the same Spirit;d
    to another faith by the same Spirit; to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit;
    to another mighty deeds; to another prophecy; to another discernment of spirits; to another varieties of tongues; to another interpretation of tongues.
    But one and the same Spirit produces all of these, distributing them individually to each person as he wishes.

  48. wmeyer says:

    Whenever I have been around the charismatics, my meter bounced off the peg.

    I’m with you there, AAM. My sister-in-law, formerly Catholic but now a charismatic mega-churcher, believes firmly that she was saved, once and forever. She also has direct words from her Lord, in which he once told her they must move back to Michigan, from whence they had moved to Atlanta some years earlier. So they sold their house–at a loss– and moved back North. Some six weeks later, she was told in another message that they must return to Atlanta. And so they did. My brother I credit with the patience of a saint. She also persists in being one of the most judgmental and gossipy people I have ever met. But she knows she is heaven bound, and is not at all sure about the rest of us.

  49. StWinefride says:

    acardnal, I’m glad you said that and not me! I try and stay positive about the current state of the Church, but at times I can’t, so keeping my head down and my mouth shut is the better option!

    jhayes, I have appreciated many sermons that Fr Cantalamessa has preached. Honestly. But for heaven’s sake to suggest that “God positively wills other religions…” and in full earshot of a Pope?

    Is he Catholic? ;)

    Shopping now…

  50. VexillaRegis says:

    @wmeyer: Some nice ladies in my parish told me they had been to the most marvellous Catholic charismatic meeting with an internationally wellknown charismatic priest. It had been very uplifting and so on, but an other participant had a scary fit, spitting and raving.” Oh”, I said, “did they call the ambulance to take her to the psychiatric ward?” “No”, they said,” the priest told us she was possessed by a demon. He couldn’t get it out of her, though.” ????!!!??? People are soooo incredibly naïve.

    Your SIL seems to need a reality check, and have her ducks put back in a row, if you don’t mind me saying that :-) Charismatics are often “terrorising” their families and parishes, as they know best what God wants, whereas the rest of us are sheep.

  51. jhayes says:

    He is Fr. Cantelamessa’s view on why cathics leave the Church for other denominations, especially in Latin America. This is from one of his 2011 Advent sermons

    “In one of his documents, John Paul II said that the proliferation of sects forced us to ask why, to ask what is lacking in our pastoral methods. My own conviction, based on experience — and not only in Latin American countries — is as follows. What is attractive outside the Church are not certain alternative forms of popular piety, which the majority of other churches and sects reject and fight against. It is a proclamation, partial perhaps, but powerful, of the grace of God, the possibility of experiencing Jesus as one’s personal Lord and Saviour, belonging to a group of people who personally take care of your needs, who pray over you when medicine has nothing more to say.

    If on the one hand we can rejoice that these people have found Christ and have been converted, it is sad that in order to do so they felt they had to leave their Church. In the majority of churches where these brothers and sisters end up, everything revolves around first conversion and the acceptance of Jesus as Lord. In the Catholic Church, thanks to the sacraments, the magisterium, and the wealth of spirituality, there is the advantage of not stopping at that initial stage, but one can reach the fullness and perfection of the Christian life.  The saints are proof of this. But it is necessary to take that conscious and personal initial step, and this is precisely where we are challenged and stimulated by the evangelical and Pentecostal communities.

    In this respect, the Charismatic Renewal has proved to be, in the words of Paul VI, “a chance for the Church.” In Latin America, the pastors of the Church are realising that the Charismatic Renewal is not (as some believed at the beginning) “part of the problem” of the exodus of Catholics from the Church, but is rather part of the solution to the problem. Statistics will never show how many people have remained faithful to the Church because of it, because they found within its ranks what others were looking for elsewhere. The numerous communities that have sprung up from within the Charismatic Movement, albeit with the limitations and at times the drifting that one finds in any human venture, are at the front line of service to the Church and of evangelization.

  52. jhayes says:

    Typos: Here is Fr. Cantelamessa’s view on why Catholics leave…

  53. Sissy says:

    The Masked Chicken said: “While there is no question that such programs provide a spiritual encounter”

    Ah yes, but which spirit???

  54. StWinefride says:

    JHayes, this from Pope Pius X Pascendi Dominici Gregis (Encyclical on the Doctrines of the Modernists – 8th September 1907) makes for interesting reading:

    “Gravity of the Situation:

    2. That We make no delay in this matter is rendered necessary especially by the fact that the partisans of error are to be sought not only among the Church’s open enemies; they lie hid, a thing to be deeply deplored and feared, in her very bosom and heart, and are the more mischievous, the less conspicuously they appear. We allude, Venerable Brethren, to many who belong to the Catholic laity, nay, and this is far more lamentable, to the ranks of the priesthood itself, who, feigning a love for the Church, lacking the firm protection of philosophy and theology, nay more, thoroughly imbued with the poisonous doctrines taught by the enemies of the Church, and lost to all sense of modesty, vaunt themselves as reformers of the Church; and, forming more boldly into line of attack, assail all that is most sacred in the work of Christ, not sparing even the person of the Divine Redeemer, whom, with sacrilegious daring, they reduce to a simple, mere man”.

  55. chantgirl says:

    As someone who spent my high school years attending a Catholic Charismatic prayer group before eventually finding my home in a more liturgically traditional Catholic parish, I can vouch for the fact that there are many people in the charismatic movement who sincerely love Jesus, and are very ready to be obedient to Him and His Church, but a good number of them need instruction and guidance from solid priests. Some of the priests that minister to the charismatics are either loony of very liberal; some are very humble, faithful men who don’t seem to have been taught about liturgy very well in the seminary.
    Like any group of people, some charismatics are in it for the spiritual high, are a little off-balanced and could use some counseling. On the whole, though, they are a group with a lot of zeal that could use some steering and guidance by solid priests. If bishops allow priests that aren’t quite solid to instruct these people, that zeal can become misplaced and go off the tracks in some pretty crazy directions.
    As to some of the experiences that I had while with this group, I have thought long and hard in retrospect as to their origin. Some were self-induced, but there is another category that were not and that is the scary part and the reason that people need a good spiritual director- to help them sift what is from God, what is from self, and what is from the devil.
    IMHO, in our perverse culture where many Bishops, priests, and laity are not doing their duty to evangelize, God is reaching out to sinners in some unexpected ways, and when we see a group of people with a lot of zeal for Christ, we would be unwise to leave them uncatechised.

  56. acardnal says:

    For Cantalamessa to say “…other religions are not merely tolerated by God…but positively willed by Him as an expression of the inexhaustible richness of His grace and His will for everyone to be saved”.

    . . .is erroneous Catholic teaching. God may ordain it with his “permissive will” but He doesn’t positively ordain or will false religion/false belief any more than He ordains evil. He allows it in order to bring forth greater good.

  57. wmeyer says:

    Katheryn said: The Alpha course is actually fairly anti-Catholic. … If your church offers Alpha, call the priest immeadately and inform him of its heretical content.

    LorrieRob said: Alpha is an excellent course for seekers and others who are open to a deeper experience of the Holy Spirit. It is ecumenical and is in no way anti- Catholic.

    The disparate opinions alone give me pause. Criticisms include that it includes aspects of pantheism and New Age notions. We have no need of New Age, Gnosticism, Modernism, nor any other of the myriad heretical notions which are currently popular. We have the CCC, and there are numerous very moving Catholic apologists whose words are consistent with Catholic teaching.

    For anyone considering the use questionable materials, or having any slightest doubts, I suggest reading JESUS CHRIST, THE BEARER OF THE WATER OF LIFE.

    Holy Mother Church has been teaching for nearly 2,000 years, and there is a wealth of materials from Doctors of the Church, Church Fathers, many of the popes, and we need not turn to any of the doubtful sources.

  58. jhayes says:

    StWinefrid, there were particular concerns at that time. The Oath Against Modernism was abolished by Pope Paul VI in 1967

  59. benedetta says:

    Still it is a valid question, whether in retrospect given that so many Catholics are now fallen away and do not participate in parish life or regular sacraments, that catechesis and faith formation offered should, at this point, be more Catholic and less ecumenical.

  60. The Masked Chicken says:

    “I am sure many of us would be fascinated to know more of your studies (though not here, before I am slapped down).”

    The book I outlined has twenty chapters, so it would not be easy to discuss it, here. It is the, “second installment,” if you will, of Mnsr. Ronald Knox’s famous book, Enthusiasm. He ends with the death of John Wesley and my book starts at exactly that spot.

    Here is what Mnsr. Knox had to say in his introduction (it starts the preface of my book):

    “There is, I would say, a recurrent situation in Church history – using the word ‘church’ in the widest sense – where an excess of charity threatens unity. You have a clique, an elite, of Christian men and (more importantly) women, who are trying to live a less worldly life than their neighbors; to be more attentive to the guidance (directly felt, they would tell you) of the Holy Spirit…The pattern is always repeating itself, not in outline merely but in detail. Almost always the enthusiastic movement is denounced as an innovation, yet claims to be preserving, or to be restoring, the primitive discipline of the Church… I would have called [this] tendancy ‘ultrasupernaturalism’. For that is the real character of the enthusiast; he expects more evident results from the grace of God than we others. He sees what effects religion can have, does sometimes have, in transforming a man’s whole life and outlook; these exceptional cases (so we are content to think them) are for him the average standard of religious achievement. He will have no ‘almost-Christians’, no weaker brethren who plod and stumble… the emphasis lies on a direct personal access to the Author of our salvation, with little of intellectual background or of liturgical expression… at the root of it lies a different theology of grace. Our traditional doctrine is that grace perfects nature but leaves it nature still. The assumption of the enthusiast is bolder and simpler; for him, grace has destroyed nature, and replaced it.”

    In science, one starts with the phenomenon and seeks an interpretation. The modern Pentecostal phenomenon began when someone had a (mis)interpretation of Scripture and got a phenomenon. It may surprise some readers to know that neither faith healing nor speaking in tongues nor locutions (“words of knowledge”) were a part of the original Pentecostal experience. These aspects were, “discovered,” in 1862 (faith healing) and 1901 (speaking in tongues – with some earlier flashes). The modern Charismatic experience is an amalgam of “discoveries.” There was no day before and day after the Holy Spirit (supposedly) poured himself out on the modern (1837) America in any way resembling what we think of Pentacostalism, today. The cast of characters who cobbled out the phenomena, experiences, interpretations, and social characteristics that crystallized into what is the generally known as, “Second Wave,” Pentacostalism are interesting to read about.

    That the initial theology was not stable is proven, even, today since it begs of even more, “discoveries,” that then have had to be re-interpreted to resemble something in Scripture. John Wimber, in South Africa proved that by starting the, Third Wave, with yet two more phenomena added to the list of, “discoveries”: Holy Laughter and Spiritual Glue. There is talk of a Fourth Wave.

    In essence, the originator of the modern movement committed the fallacy of the converse accident in that she got a phenomenon as a result of a type of desperate prayer and, being a good Protestant, tried to match it with something in Scripture. Now, the phenomenon did have a proper interpretation which the Catholic Church could have given her, but, alas, she was a Protestant in America and the Church was too busy with its own problems at the time to get involved. Sadly, when she and her co-religionists visited England in (I’d have look this up) 1865, the people at the Keswick seminar re-interpreted the whole phenomena in such a way as to completely disguise its original intentions. It has taken a long time to trace all of this. Donald Dayton has done most of the yeoman’s work.

    As I say, there is a lot I could talk about, but that is not the topic of this post. Linguists, neuroscientists, sociologists, and other scientists have studied different aspects of the modern phenomenon. They have actually done brain mapping studies of people speaking in tongues.

    I don’t want to be cryptic, but it takes a while to lay this all out and I like to systematic and thorough. The original intention from the original “discoverer” was specifically condemned as a proposition by the Council of Trent. Mnsr. Knox is, essentially, correct, when he says that the phenomenon was an attempt to overwrite nature with grace.

    All I will say about the Charismatic aspects of the Alpha Course is that it will never make the person into a saint (it, actually, can’t, since it imports a defect in Faith), but, if it does not drive him insane or to kill himself (you would have to know what I know to believe this is possible), it could make him a better person up to a point. Make of that what you will.

    The Chicken

    P. S. As far as quoting this Pope or that for support or condemnation, please, stop. I can tell you that no Pope has ever erred in making a Magisterial pronouncement on these matters, since he is protected from doing so, but some statements have been misinterpreted by others to say things they do not really say. Very simply, as Walter Hollenweger, who was the pre-eminent Pentecostal theologian of the last generation, has pointed out, “A true Catholic contribution is still wanting.” Everyone who makes comments on the modern phenomenon almost, invariably, starts with an unproven assumption: that these are the same phenomena described in Acts. Science never starts with a conclusion and, if the people writing books and planning Courses would bow in recognition of the whole complexity of the situation of the true nature of the phenomenon, they would not do so, either.

    This is a painful topic for me to discuss. You would have had to have seen what I have seen and know what I know to understand why I have to be passionate about this. This is my last comment on the topic unless it becomes the topic of a post.

  61. Suburbanbanshee says:

    Catholic Charismatic stuff seems to have varying amounts of Pentecostalism, etc., depending on who’s running it. In my area, this ran the gamut from people who were basically just saying the Rosary and doing traditional Catholic devotional and mystical prayer, to people who were totally Pentecostal-y. It was most popular in the Eighties, but there’s still some bits that hang on. Mother Angelica famously was into the Charismatic stuff for a while, but she seems to have interpreted most of it in a traditional Catholic hermeneutic; and then she stepped more and more back into traditional Catholic mode from then on.

    That said, I think it can be harmful to people who are poorly led or who are poorly spiritually prepared, and that there are better ways to teach spiritual fervor and a personal encounter with Jesus than by borrowing from Pentecostals.

  62. LorrieRob says:

    Alpha is not friendly to New Age thinking . The supportive materials explain all the pitfalls of New Age. It is designed for people who aren’t ready for the wealth of Catholic writing from The Church Fathers and Saints. It’s interesting to know that there is Catholic version as noted in one of the posts on this topic. The inquiry part of the RCIA I attended taught by a liberal religious sister and her team o f similar thinkers was far and away more open to New Age and Eastern religions. I’ll never forget someone remarking about something wondrous and revealingof God that made them want to drop to their knees in gratitude… And the sister interjecting…or into the lotus position… We read from the Indian poet Rumi (?). …sad when as is pointed out, there is so much to learn from 2000 years of Catholic writing and teaching…

  63. benedetta says:

    Chicken, your scholarship is so interesting!

    As to Charismatic Renewal’s presence in many dioceses, I don’t think that stands as an official imprimatur so much as grows out of the need to supervise and manage this and other newer movements for obvious reasons.

  64. benedetta says:

    Btw have read much of Fr. Cantalamessa’s work and the homilies. His approach seems to be to synthesize this movement into the mainstream Church. He certainly does not focus on attributes such as “speaking in tongues” in his discussion of this movement and anyone who zeros in on this as the point or goal of such movements is in error, and I am sure he would be the first to acknowledge this.

    We should be wary of movements which pride themselves on these phenomena interpreted as some sort of hallmark of the Holy Spirit. As the Chicken points out, there is no evidence that this is aptly named as the same “speaking in tongues” which St. Paul describes, and further as the Chicken points out there is no evidence that this continued as some sort of unbroken tradition from that time up to today. In fact what the Chicken reports on this is the opposite.

    Any time groups assemble that veer off in one direction or another it is incumbent upon our shepherds to help them along into the true Faith. The fact that this movement has a presence in different geographical locations and dioceses doesn’t validate them or offer anything radically new in terms of the universal call to holiness.

    Now, what all this means in terms of the future of the new Archb of Canterbury and the Church of England is anyone’s guess. As for American Catholics, there certainly does not appear to be any sort of huge demand for programs such as this at the parish level and one expects that will not change. What is needed is good, reverent liturgy.

  65. wmeyer says:

    Alpha is not friendly to New Age thinking . The supportive materials explain all the pitfalls of New Age. It is designed for people who aren’t ready for the wealth of Catholic writing from The Church Fathers and Saints.

    As may be, but I have learned to be skeptical of modern publications, many of which embed their own notions, often far removed from Church teaching. Besides the CCC, there is also the Baltimore Catechism (easily approcahable by anyone), the Catechism of Fr. John Hardon, S.J., and This Is the Faith: A Complete Explanation of the Catholic Faith, a very good volume by Canon Francis Ripley.

    Ultimately, any book which lacks the nihil obstat and imprimatur cannot be considered as definitive or free from error. And when in doubt, check the CCC.

  66. chantgirl says:

    Just to bring this full circle –

    Charismaniacs can be taught!

  67. StWinefride says:

    acardnal, thank you very much for that explanation for those of us “who have eyes to see and ears to hear”.

    Sissy, “ah yes, but which spirit?” – good question.

    And while I am here visiting, I would like to point out that the Charismatic Movement is behind a certain supposed Marian apparition site that shall remain nameless.

    Our Lady, who according to the Gospels “pondered things in her heart” and who spoke very little has now become ….well, you can see for yourselves…

    Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us,

    St Michael the Archangel, pray for us,

    All the Martyrs and Saints of the Glorious Catholic Faith, I beg of you, pray for us.

  68. robtbrown says:


    I’m not sure who wrote the text you cited, but it seems the product of wishful thinking rather than an reading of Lumen Gentium.

    1. LG reasserted the infallibility of the pope affirmed by Vat I in matters of faith and morals. It is neither flattened nor mitigated.

    2. LG reasserted the infallibility of Councils.

    3. LG also expanded the infallibility of the Ordinary Universal Magisterium to secondary objects (e.g., male priesthood). And how are we to know what the OUM teaches? We know it because bishops, dispersed throughout the world, are in communion with the pope. As a liberal theologian lamented, this is in fact an expansion of papal authority.

  69. wmeyer says:

    robtbrown, Google is almost always your friend. LGs quotation is from the website of “ModernChurch”, and according to its About Us page:
    “Modern Church, formerly The Modern Churchpeople’s Union, is a membership organisation that promotes liberal Christian theology.”

    Yeah, buddy, that’s where I’d turn for an understanding of LG! NOT!

    Not really the best choice of a reference for this blog, is it? ;)

  70. robtbrown says:


    You seem not to have understood what I said.

    First, I made general reference to the text cited by Scotus, which is in error.

    Second, I noted that LG not only reaffirmed Papal Infallibility but also expanded it. Then I referenced a liberal theologian who actually understood what LG had done but also lamented it.

    Quem dei volunt perdere, dementant prius.

  71. wmeyer says:

    robtbrown, I may not have made myself clear. I was responding to you only in providing the apparent source for what scotus quoted. My sarcasm was in regard to that site. I understand and agree with your notes on LG.

    Sorry for causing confusion.

  72. jhayes says:

    In a N0v 1 talk, Bishop Fellay seems to reject the idea that the Magisterium decides what is Tradition

    “The Pope replied to me in a letter dated June 30 in which he sets three conditions:

    The first is that we must recognize that the Magisterium is the authentic judge of Apostolic Tradition—this means that the Magisterium is the one to tell us what belongs to Tradition.  That is true.  But obviously the Roman authorities want to utilize that to say:  you recognize that, and therefore now we decide that the Council is traditional, and you have to accept it.  And that, incidentally, is the second condition.

    It is necessary for us to accept the fact that the Council is an integral part of Tradition, of Apostolic Tradition.  But here we say that everyday observation proves to us the contrary.  How could one say all at once that this Council is traditional?  To be able to say such a thing, it is necessary to have completely changed the meaning of the term “Tradition”.  And in fact we realize clearly that they have changed the meaning of the word “Tradition”;  for it is not insignificant that at the Second Vatican Council they rejected the definition by Saint Vincent of Lérins, which is the altogether traditional definition:  “That which was believed by all, everywhere, and always.”

    “That which was believed” is an object.  Now, for them, Tradition is something living, it is no longer an object, it is what they call the “subject Church”, it is the Church which grows.  That is Tradition, which from age to age makes new things and accumulates;  and this accumulation is a Tradition that develops, that increases.  This sense is true also but it is secondary.

    As a third point, it is necessary to accept the validity and the liceity of the New Mass.”

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