— Matthew Schmitz (@matthewschmitz) November 1, 2017
More updates to come… look below.
Originally Published on: Nov 1, 2017 @ 11:38
Read at Crux, the piece about Fr. Thomas Weinandy comments on what is happening under Pope Francis. Weinandy is the former head for the staff of the U.S. Bishops Committee on Doctrine and is a current member of the Vatican’s International Theological Commission. Inter alia:
While expressing loyalty to Francis as the “Vicar of Christ on earth, the shepherd of his flock,” Capuchin Father Thomas Weinandy nevertheless charges that the pope is:
Fostering “chronic confusion.”
“Demeaning” the importance of doctrine.
Appointing bishops who “scandalize” believers with dubious “teaching and pastoral practice.”
Giving prelates who object the impression they’ll be “marginalized or worse” if they speak out.
Causing faithful Catholics to “lose confidence in their supreme shepherd.”
“In recognizing this darkness, the Church will humbly need to renew itself, and so continue to grow in holiness,” Weinandy wrote in the letter, which is dated July 31, the feast of St. Ignatius Loyola, founder of the pope’s Jesuit order.
There is quite a bit more. Read it there.
Sandro Magistero has Fr. Weinandy’s explanation:
“There was no longer any doubt that Jesus wanted me to write…”
by Thomas G. Weinandy
Last May I was in Rome for an International Theological Commission meeting. I was staying at Domus Sanctae Marthae, and since I arrived early, I spent most of the Sunday afternoon prior to the meeting on Monday in Saint Peter’s praying in the Eucharistic Chapel.
I was praying about the present state of the Church and the anxieties I had about the present Pontificate. I was beseeching Jesus and Mary, St. Peter and all of the saintly popes who are buried there to do something to rectify the confusion and turmoil within the Church today, a chaos and an uncertainty that I felt Pope Francis had himself caused. I was also pondering whether or not I should write and publish something expressing my concerns and anxiety.
On the following Wednesday afternoon, at the conclusion of my meeting, I went again to St. Peter’s and prayed in the same manner. That night I could not get to sleep, which is very unusual for me. It was due to all that was on my mind pertaining to the Church and Pope Francis.
At 1:15 AM I got up and went outside for short time. When I went back to my room, I said to the Lord: “If you want me to write something, you have to give me a clear sign. This is what the sign must be. Tomorrow morning I am going to Saint Mary Major’s to pray and then I am going to Saint John Lateran. After that I am coming back to Saint Peter’s to have lunch with a seminary friend of mine. During that interval, I must meet someone that I know but have not seen in a very long time and would never expect to see in Rome at this time. That person cannot be from the United States, Canada or Great Britain. Moreover, that person has to say to me in the course of our conversation, ‘Keep up the good writing’.”
The next morning I did all of the above and by the time I met my seminarian friend for lunch what I had asked the Lord the following night was no longer in the forefront of my mind.
However, towards the end of the meal an archbishop appeared between two parked cars right in front of our table (we were sitting outside). I had not seen him for over twenty years, long before he became an archbishop. We recognized one another immediately. What made his appearance even more unusual was that, because of his recent personal circumstances, I would never have expected to see him in Rome or anywhere else, other than in his own archdiocese. (He was from none of the above mentioned countries.) We spoke about his coming to Rome and caught up on what we were doing. I then introduced him to my seminarian friend. He said to my friend that we had met a long time ago and that he had, at that time, just finished reading my book on the immutability of God and the Incarnation. He told my friend that it was an excellent book, that it helped him sort out the issue, and that my friend should read the book. Then he turned to me and said: “Keep up the good writing.”
I could hardly believe that this just happened in a matter of a few minutes. But there was no longer any doubt in my mind that Jesus wanted me to write something. I also think it significant that it was an Archbishop that Jesus used. I considered it an apostolic mandate.
So giving it considerable thought and after writing many drafts, I decided to write Pope Francis directly about my concerns. However, I always intended to make it public since I felt many of my concerns were the same concerns that others had, especially among the laity, and so I publicly wanted to give voice to their concerns as well.
UPDATE 1 Nov:
The USCCB issued a statement
My emphases and comments:
U.S. Conference Of Catholic Bishops President On Dialogue Within The Church
November 1, 2017
WASHINGTON—Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, President of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, has issued the following statement on the nature of dialogue within the Church today.
Full statement follows:
“The departure today of Fr. Thomas Weinandy, O.F.M., Cap., as a consultant to the Committee on Doctrine and the publication of his letter to Pope Francis gives us an opportunity to reflect on the nature of dialogue within the Church. Throughout the history of the Church, ministers, theologians and the laity all have debated and have held personal opinions on a variety of theological and pastoral issues. [However, personal opinions can be shown to be in keeping or out of keeping with the Church’s teachings. Pastoral issues are another matter, since they often deal with contingent situations that allow more than one solution.] In more recent times, these debates have made their way into the popular press. That is to be expected and is often good. However, these reports are often expressed in terms of opposition, as political – conservative vs. liberal, left vs. right, pre-Vatican II vs Vatican II. These distinctions are not always very helpful. [Look. This statement clearly concerns what Fr. Weinandy wrote. However, I read the letter Fr. Weinandy wrote. HERE. There is nothing “political” in Weinandy’s letter. Why bring in “pre-Vatican II vs Vatican II?” That is irresponsible. Are we to conclude that the statement is also a kind “declaration”… of something?]
Christian charity needs to be exercised by all involved. [Yes… all involved… which means the writers of statements.] In saying this, we all must acknowledge that legitimate differences exist, and that it is the work of the Church, the entire body of Christ, to work towards an ever-growing understanding of God’s truth.
As Bishops, we recognize the need for honest and humble discussions around theological and pastoral issues. We must always keep in mind St. Ignatius of Loyola’s “presupposition” to his Spiritual Exercises: “…that it should be presumed that every good Christian ought to be more eager to put a good interpretation on a neighbor’s statement than to condemn it.” This presupposition should be afforded all the more to the teaching of Our Holy Father. [And… what about to Fr. Weinandy?]
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops is a collegial body of bishops working towards that goal. As Pastors and Teachers of the Faith, therefore, let me assert that we always stand in strong unity with and loyalty to the Holy Father, Pope Francis, who “is the perpetual and visible source and foundation of the unity both of the bishops and of the whole company of the faithful” (LG, no. 23).”