Video interview with Phil Lawler about book on Pope Francis: Lost Shepherd

I’m still reading the book, which will be vilified – with its author – by papalotrous libs who will not have read it.  The New catholic Red Guards don’t permit questions.  They don’t have to read, either.  They react.

Lost Shepherd: How Pope Francis is Misleading His Flock.

Lawler presents a heartfelt cri de coeur.

Lawler was once very positive Pope Francis.  He describes how, eventually, something in him “snapped”.  He came to the view that the Pope was trying to change unchangeable teaching, which is a contradiction.  Confusion is growing and the one who is given to the Church to resolve confusion is bringing it about.

So far, what I’ve read in this new book is fair and balanced.  He remains supportive and respectful and hopeful.

For example, Lawler looks at the Pope’s encyclicals praising what is praiseworthy and pointing to what is confusing.   When looking at Laudato si’ he first underscores what is solid and then points out that

A spiritual leader weighing in on a scientific debate, Francis is obviously out of his element. Man-made climate change either is or is not a scientific reality. A pronouncement by the pope—who has no special authority on scientific issues—will not affect that reality one way or another. In Laudato Si’, the pontiff sides with the majority opinion, and he does so unnecessarily, because the question of climate change is not central to the moral argument that he is exploring.  (Kindle Locations 524-528).

In any event, I’m still working through the book.

The title is really provocative, but I have found him to be respectful while making his concerns known.  The analogy that he uses is that of a concerned child who, seeing that his father has put his foot wrong, speaks up out of love.

Having read as much as I have read, I have every reason to believe that Lawler is sincere.

On EWTN, Raymond Arroyo interviewed Phil Lawler.

Go to 23:00 for Lawler.  You can tell that Lawler is not a bomb thrower.  You make the call.

BTW… his comment on the weird new stamp for Easter issued by the Vatican Post is DEAD ON.

In addition to this interview, you might also have a look at a piece penned by Sam Gregg about Lawler’s book at Catholic World Report.

Gregg says:

The power of Lawler’s narrative was derived from its calm tone, a meticulous attention to facts, a refusal to overstate or downplay how bad things were, a comprehensive knowledge of Catholic teaching and history, and an obvious love for the Church. … As in his previous work, Lawler doesn’t embellish facts. Indeed there’s nothing by way of fact in Lawler’s text which isn’t already known. Lawler’s focus is upon helping his readers understand Francis’s papacy and what it might mean for the Catholic Church in the long-term.


But one of his book’s strengths is that it tries, at every point, to give Francis the benefit of the doubt. In addition to avoiding the hyperbole, polemics, and more bizarre theories about Francis which populate some of the internet’s weirder outposts, Lawler prudently distinguishes between the pope’s words and actions, and the more flagrantly outrageous statements of some of the garrulous characters surrounding him.

This judicious approach won’t save Lawler from the barrage of insults, frenetic name-calling, splenetic tweets, conspiracy theories, and limp non sequiturs which, alas, we’re come to expect from some of Francis’s defenders. [And we know whose non sequiturs he means!] That, it seems, is how they roll. But just as Lawler’s The Faithful Departed made its case carefully and without exaggeration, so too does Lost Shepherd neatly and charitably summarize many faithful Catholics’ reservations about Francis’s pontificate.

To which, I think it is appropriate to add:

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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

    I am an SSA Catholic. That stamp triggered me, and I’m having a very tough time getting calmed down.

    This church under this pope is not a safe space for me.

    Phil Lawler is a saint.

  2. David says:

    I began grade school when Pius XII was Pope, and in my basic education we didn’t really talk about him that much at all. We were being taught the Catholic Faith, which did not depend on following every word out of the Pope’s mouth. Something has gone badly out of whack in the Pope-Church relationship.

    And as to that stamp. It bears a certain resemblance to a prominent male figure in the infamous fresco Archbishop Paglia had painted in his cathedral. Why is it that not much attention has been paid to the succession of homosexual scandals involving Vatican officials, the latest involving an Auditor of the Rota? Does no one care that people important in the government of our Church are engaging in flagrant immorality of a particularly grave kind?

  3. VP says:

    About the stamp – “I think it might be popular around the Vatican as well.” Brave, brilliant.

    I pray for the office of the Papacy and the incumbent, but history and God will not likely be kind.

    Prayers too for Mr. Stuart in the above comment.

  4. stephen c says:

    I am just an ordinary Christian – and I never thought that I would have to pray for the successor of Peter. There are few people who have a higher opinion of Peter than I do!

    I felt very sad for our poor Pope when he decided to publish his first American article in a basically pro-abortion Jesuit magazine. Surely, I told myself, he could not have so little concern for the victims of the violence of abortion. I was wrong. As far as I know, he has never said a heart-felt word in his entire Pontificate that made any reasonable person think he has any real love for the unborn victims of abortion.

    Nobody wants to say it, but some of us are saying it, and I will say it too – the poor old man is a great sinner who needs our prayers. All this hustle and bustle about “heresy” and “rich Germans” and “but what about canon law?” and all the rest is not the central issue. It is not a question of danger for the Church – the Church will triumph. But never before has there been so much need for simple decent people to pray, and pray fervently, for a cold-hearted person who accepted the office of Pope and who has chosen, for whatever cold-hearted reason, to decide not to sincerely battle a great evil – in this case, abortion – even though millions of people are praying for him to battle that evil.

    Well, we all make choices. If I had the choice, I would not have to suffer, among all my other sufferings, the sadness of having to feel pity for a cold-hearted Argentine person who wanted to be Pope.

    That being said, he could be worse, and I could be – such things have happened – I could be wrong.

    I don’t care much – maybe I should, but I don’t – about the minor issue of bad and probably sinful art on Vatican stamps. The sins of the flesh are bad, and I would prefer that Vatican stamps not hint that such sins are to be celebrated – but we will all be dead not that many years from now – maybe the youngest person reading this will be alive 80 years from now, but for most of us there are a lot less than 80 years left. Time is not important, my friends. But I never thought that I would be an old Catholic Christian who had to pray for a Pope who many reasonable people consider a cold-hearted person who does not care about the poorest of the poor. Try and tell me I am a bad person for saying something that the millions of aborted babies would like me to say.

    Maybe you have read this, and consider yourself a loving kind person, and think I am a bad person with insufficient respect for the person who was chosen to be anointed as Pope. Well, go ahead and think that way, but: remember the millions of aborted babies he has not really tried to save from their violent end, and after you spend 10 or so seconds imagining that you are listening to each of their whimpers while they are being aborted – no need to listen to all the whimpers, just a couple of hundred or so – and after you reread what our poor cold-hearted Argentinian said about the most famous abortionist in Italy (he said, on perhaps the most evil day in the Church since before Jesus died, that the vicious and violent woman was “one of the greats”, or something like that: God forgive him) – after you do that, tell me I am a bad person, while those whimpers are resounding in your memory.

    Or tell me that the whimpers are not important, or tell me that the pains of the unborn whom our poor first Argentinian Pope does not talk much about are not important. I will pray for you just as I pray for him.

  5. rbbadger says:

    Perhaps the stamp was what Philip Lawler was referring to when he tweeted this:

    “Hmm. I think I just lit the fuse on a stick of dynamite. Raymond Arroyo asked me a straight question, I gave a straight answer, and the folks in the control room erupted.”

  6. JabbaPapa says:

    I have not read this book, and it’s very unlikely that I will (so caveat, but nevertheless one comment on the short paragraph from it presented here :

    A spiritual leader weighing in on a scientific debate, Francis is obviously out of his element. Man-made climate change either is or is not a scientific reality.

    First, Mr Lawler is a political philosopher, whilst the Pope is a chemist. Who, I wonder, of the two is most out of his element (I’m unsure that Mr Lawler intended this pun) concerning scientific debate ?

    Second, Mr Lawler’s idea about “Man-made climate change either is or is not a scientific reality” is objectively fake — scientifically, the influence of human activities on the climate is a complex question that cannot at present be realistically boiled down into some radical yes/no, 1/0, is/is not black & white binary. Climate change is an area of scientific inquiry, not something the truth™ of which could be authoritatively presented to the general public in, for example, an accurate school science manual.

    Whereas, Laudato Si’ 24 : this century may well witness extraordinary climate change — and 199 : It cannot be maintained that empirical science provides a complete explanation of life, the interplay of all creatures and the whole of reality.

    Mr Lawler’s simplistic dismissal of the Pope’s contribution from an ongoing scientific debate to a moral and ethical examination of a properly Catholic attitude to the far broader question of how we influence and are influenced by the environment that we live in, which most certainly cannot except in the most reductionist manner be characterised principally by some ideological position on “is climate change athropogenic — yes or no”, especially given that this is a fake question scientifically in the first place, the real one being : to what degree can it be said that man’s activities might be causing a climate change ?.

    Such a question cannot be answered with one word, contrary to Mr Lawler’s attitude.

    Papolatry, which Rabelais termed Papimanie, is the relative pendent of Papefiguerie (ideological public hostility against the Pope), both of which far too many Catholics have been giving into since the Second Vatican Council, and since the emergence of the mass media. However, both Papimanie and Papefiguerie are potentially destructive of the Catholicity.

    Be wary of each.

    Some underlying confusions among Catholics have become more prominent during this Pontificate certainly, and the Pope could arguably be held as responsible at least in part for this trend — but just as the opposite ideological zealotries of the warmists and denialists are unreasonable, so too are the opposite false positions of the Papimanes and the Papefigues in the Church today.

  7. Malta says:

    This is only my opinion, so I could be wrong. But I spent years as an investigator as a FBI Special Agent and other jobs–for 20 years. As a caveat I go only to the TLM. But I think most Traditionalists have it at least partially wrong about Pope Francis. How do we know he wrote the infamous footnote in Amoris Laeitia? [Everything above his signature belongs to Pope Francis.] So many prelates assist Popes in their encyclicals or letters; who knows who could have inserted that. Pope Francis is not a young man, and he is an extremely busy Pope. I personally don’t think he did it; but deception and trickery is rampant in the Vatican. I think someone else did it. But Popes are fallible humans too, and he could have been tricked–I think he was. Even his statement “who am I to judge” has been diabolically used by the MSM to try to imply that he’s for that lifestyle; it’s not right. I know Pope Francis has surrounded himself with liberal prelates, but I don’t think he’s a “bad” Pope. It’s not right to unfairly castigate and accuse a Pope who has actually helped societies such as FSSPX. People need real hard facts before they unconditionally attack a Pope of the Church.

  8. Michael 1964 says:

    Mr. Lawler is a most excellent author. His book, “Faithful Departed,” is must reading for anyone hailing from the Archdiocese of Boston. That being said, perhaps Mr. Lawler should rethink his harsh criticisms of the past concerning some traditional Catholics who expressed concerns about previous pontificates. Pope Francis is simply the full flourishing of the bad fruit of the Spirit of the Council. That “spirit” would seem to be a demonic one. Why is it licit and proper to criticize this pontiff for his confusing and perhaps scandalous statements on the Sacraments being made available for the divorced and remarried, while at the same time, criticizing Pope John Paul II for praying with pagans (a far worse act), is seen as off limits? Pope Paul VI did everything in his power to destroy the Roman Rite, yet we were told not to criticize. This sounds like selective outrage on the part of Mr. Lawler, albeit calmly stated. It would be nice to see him pen an article or book similar to the “Faithful Departed” which takes his “micro” view of Boston and extends it to a “macro” view for the whole Latin Rite, including the Church of Rome.

  9. Semper Gumby says:

    Interesting book, prayers for Peter Stuart, and well said stephen c.

    Fr. Neuhaus, in a 2003 rebuttal in First Things against a New Republic essay by the problematic Andrew Sullivan, made an observation perhaps applicable to this Vatican stamp:

    “Manifestly uneasy about being a bad Catholic, [Andrew Sullivan] does not, like other bad Catholics, confess his sin, but writes endlessly about why the Church is wrong and he is right about what he and others do. Perhaps sensing that he is not getting much of anywhere with that argument, he resorts to declaring, “We are all sodomites now.” The discerning reader will recognize that the tu quoque defense (You’re one, too) is the last refuge of the defender of the indefensible.”

  10. Ave Crux says:

    RE: Michael 1964 – These were my thoughts as well.  Traditional-minded Catholics – most notably ArchbIshop Lefebvre and Bishop de Castro Mayer, among many, many others – recognized the future “tree” in the seed, and for decades they warned and decried each new shoot pushing forth from the errors planted at Vatican II, always being called pessimists and reactionaries for their prescient predictions of what would ultimately – and necessarily – come to pass, and has come to pass.

    When you plant an apple seed you get an apple tree; when you plant the seed of a rose bush, you get a rose bush; when you plant the seed of an oak tree, you get an oak tree….. when you plant error – as happened at Vatican II with the cunning intervention of modernists – you get a proliferation of error.

    We’ve been Traditionalists since those early days, and we could see all of this almost 50 years ago.

    I was very young then and surrounded by those who were wise and very well-informed, and even then I understood clearly the validity and soundness of their concerns and warnings.

    And yet these very learned and wise Catholics were marginalized and their warnings cast aside by ” mainstream, conservative” Catholics.

    In fact, I had met many of these individuals personally, such as Michael Davies, Archbishop LeFebvre, Father Vincent Miceli… giants on whose shoulders we now stand … all great founders of the traditional movement against the errors of modernism. Everything… Everything…to the last jot and tittle, which they had written and spoken of, has come to pass exactly as they foretold.

    How many good and devout priests we’ve seen put on ice these past 40 years for not wanting to go along with the modernist agenda!…such as modernist catechisms, communion in the hand, ecumenical gatherings in their churches, sex education in Catholic schools, and so on.

    It’s very sad to see everything now coming to pass that they had warned about five decades ago, while being called doomsayers and pessimists and reactionaries. 

    It was only a matter of time for everything prepared in secret to come out fully into the light of day. Those wise enough and insightful enough, with a solid Sensus Catholicus, foresaw it and foretold it.

    Concern Catholics would do well to read the writings of these great men in order to understand better what is happening now in the Catholic church and what is needed for her restoration.

  11. msc says:

    I can’t say that to others that stamp might sexualize Christ because that is in the eye of the beholder. But it doesn’t seem to me to do so any more than Michaelangelo’s ‘Risen Christ’, Bernini’s ‘Pieta’, or many other depictions of Christ partly naked (the ‘Last Judgment’). It looks a bit kitschy, but that’s another matter. I find kitschy depictions of a very Anglo-Germanic Christ, looking somewhat like Ted Neeley offensive in that they so downplay both his true humanity [Jewish] and his divinity [nothing majestic].

  12. Malta says: So many prelates assist Popes in their encyclicals or letters; who knows who could have inserted that. Pope Francis is not a young man, and he is an extremely busy Pope.

    No Pope should ever be too busy to carry out his divinely ordained responsibility to confirm his brethren in the faith.

  13. Kathleen10 says:

    In order to get along in today’s world, John the Baptist should have quietly and with all due respect suggested to Herod that he perhaps maybe should have considered carefully before he took Herodias as his wife. But of course if Herod was in the middle of a dinner party then it would have been better for John to put his suggestion in a note so that Herod could have been spared the embarrassment. Mildness, this has become the highest values in our churchy culture.
    Pragmatism, and the certainty of concluding that everything we have seen is from the evil one, and that right now, this minute, our Vatican is filled with evildoers, who plot only evil day and night, compels me to pray for a John the Baptist, who will not be subtle nor pandering toward this pope and his followers and who will stand in the public realm and with all masculine vigor and in a very loud voice, will identify this pope and this “magisterium” as from Hell, denounce them in the clearest possible manner, and make it positively clear to all Catholics that we ought to consider them anathema and have nothing whatsoever to do with them. They are not to be listened to.
    How did we get to the point where we are AT this point and we must continue to be polite. We are not only seeing the destruction of the faith and the moral law but we must continue to be generous toward the man doing it. I feel as if we are being gaslighted while I must also watch the faith go up in flames.
    I am not patient. I admit it. I find it exceedingly hard to move by inches when what we need are miles. At this rate, a sufficient response will take until at least 2025. Do we have that time??

  14. TonyO says:

    When you plant an apple seed you get an apple tree; when you plant the seed of a rose bush, you get a rose bush; when you plant the seed of an oak tree, you get an oak tree….. when you plant error – as happened at Vatican II with the cunning intervention of modernists – you get a proliferation of error.

    Ave Crux, how does a Church protected from error convene an ecumenical council and put out documents with the full approval of the pope and the bishops of the world together, when they contain grave error?

    While I don’t minimize the errors that plague us, can we not assert something slightly less destructive of the teaching authority of the Church? Namely: while the documents (certain ones) of VII were ambiguous and meant to be ambiguous by those who wanted to exploit the gaps and holes, the documents also are capable of being read as in conformity with the perennial true doctrines of the Church. What is shameful is that the pope and the cardinals did nothing to stand in the way of the innovators and modernists who abused the documents to preach a new gospel, one that makes common cause with the world deformed by sin. The bishops who “went along with the crowd” in following the innovators – in the absence of objection from the top – were fools, of course, for there can be no innovation of truth in the Church that discommodes the perennial teaching. Such innovation can only come from error. Naturally Paul VI and JPII bear much responsibility for the bishops they appointed, but the bishops of VII were mainly appointed by Pius XII. They too fell down on the job.

    Amoris Laetitia has the exact same sort of ambiguities in it, (only more so), and is being used by those who do not want the perennial doctrines of the Church to hold sway in their dioceses. This time it is now clear that the pope himself intends the ambiguity, so the innovators are not abusing the document; they are, rather, abusing their offices and the doctrines of the Church to mislead the ignorant, the simple and those who want to be misled. The latter, at least, are culpable for their error.

  15. Joy65 says:

    I won’t criticize Pope Francis but I will pray for him daily as I do ALL Priests, Religious Brothers and Sisters, Deacons, Seminarians, Bishops, Cardinals and all who are discerning a vocation to and preparing for the Priesthood and religious life. They need our daily prayers.

  16. David says:

    A comment on what msc said above. It occurred to me that this is an argument that could be made, but I would counter it with this observation. The stamp, Archbishop Paglia’s fresco, and the male figure in the Vatican creche all represent a very particular kind of contemporary gay iconography that is instantly recognizable once you know the code. Renaissance and Baroque masterpieces of religious art do not come with that ‘code’.

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  18. LarryW2LJ says:

    I must say that it was indeed refreshing to watch and hear Mr. Lawler make his arguments in a calm, dignified, charitable and rational manner, without resorting to the ad hominem, invective, and emotion like we’ve seen coming out Rome lately.

  19. JabbaPapa says:

    David, you’re exactly right in your point about gay iconography.

  20. Elizabeth D says:

    at the parish I was baptized at, they had in a hallway (off of the narthex maybe?) a wall crucifix depicting Jesus completely nude. I was a very small child and I just remember that the adults regarded this artwork as very special and I was told this was how Jesus was really crucified, totally naked. I was very uncomfortable with it. Some years ago when I wanted to contact that parish for a copy of my baptismal certificate I found they had a small image of that crucifix on their website and I remembered it dimly and how it had been disturbing to me, well it disturbed me even more as an adult. It was an exceptionally beautifully and skillfully sculpted corpus, in bronze I think, but it wasn’t merely nude Jesus, it seemed to be the body of Jesus as imagined by a consumer of homosexual porn. I don’t want to explain. My reaction is I want the sculpture (which I suspect is probably very monetarily valuable) destroyed as sacrilegious. I didn’t try to say anything about it to anyone, but, it is wrong. It seemed hard to imagine that this was unintentional since the entire sculpture was done with such anatomical precision.

    I have a cloisonne crucifixion artwork above my bed that has the Blessed Virgin Mary and St Mary Magdalene with Jesus Who is indeed shirtless but stylized and dressed in a “loincloth” to well below His knees! It was made by a religious sister in the 50s.

  21. Elizabeth D says:

    I read his site daily and think very highly of Phil Lawler. One of the most well-informed and well-grounded and trustworthy Catholic commentators out there, and he and Jeff Mirus have done their utmost to explain Pope Francis’ words and actions in the best light possible.

  22. Joy65 says:

    OH and as for the stamp it is the Glorified Risen Jesus nothing sexual about that in any way. As I see it He has triumphed over death and sin and is in His eternal Glory.

  23. Moro says:

    MSC – I think you are spot on. Google the Resurrection and look at the images. Literally all of them have a shirtless Jesus, maybe part of the shroud covering him. Why all the fuss? And gay iconography? How the heck do you guys know so much about this? It kind of takes one to know.

    If it’s based on some crackpot theory from the likes of E. Michael Jones, you’d best ignore it.

  24. David says:

    +Moro: Walk around the campus of your nearest university and you will get all the information you need from the no doubt many posters you will find advertising the latest LGBTQ event.

  25. The Masked Chicken says:

    Dear JabbaPapa,

    You wrote:

    “First, Mr Lawler is a political philosopher, whilst the Pope is a chemist. Who, I wonder, of the two is most out of his element (I’m unsure that Mr Lawler intended this pun) concerning scientific debate ?”

    Pope Francis has a degree of, “chemical technician,” which we would call a lab assistant in most Western countries. In essence, he has the equivalent of an associates in science degree from a community college:

    In the U. S., most undergrads receive the same basic courses through their junior year: Gen Chem, Organic Chem, Physical Chem, and, perhaps, Analytical Chem or Biochem. At elite schools, they might take graduate courses their senior year or do a senior research project under a faculty member. In graduate school, they take additional courses, such as Inorganic chem (some take this as undergrads), additional quantum or thermodynamic, or synthetic design – it all depends on what they specialize and in. After they pass their prelims, qualifiers, cum exams (the name varies), they may write an optional master’s thesis (many, do not), then interview for a research group and spend three years or so doing dissertation research and publishing. After they pass their oral exam on the dissertation, they receive their doctorate. Physics and biology have similar programs.

    The point is that anyone with at least a bachelor’s degree has a right to call themselves a chemist or physicist or mathematician. The actress, Danika McKellor (sorry about spelling – she played Winnie Cooper on, The Wonder Years) has only a bachelor’s in mathematics, but she has an important theorem in statistical mechanics named after her and she has written four book for young women about high school math (and has won awards from the American Mathematics Association for them).

    As one goes to more advanced work, the topics become both harder and more specialized. My twin has been both the department chair in chemistry at a major university and an acting dean and I would never consider his opinion on global warming to be authoritative. The reason is that his area is sonochemistry – the application of high frequency/intensity sound waves in chemical reactions (one of the two ways a chemist/musician can bring the study of sound to chemistry).

    Even if Pope Francis had a doctorate in chemistry, unless it is in atmospheric or environmental chemistry, his opinion is, essentially, no better informed than a layman’s, unless he goes back and specifically gets caught up on the literature, which could take months or years.

    Pope Francis, however, has, essentially, an associate’s degree in chemistry. In the U. S., at least, that only gets one through organic chemistry, not physical chemistry, which is where all of the math and computer simulations are learned.

    Thus, I find Mr. Lawler’s statement to be, essentially, accurate.

    As for the effect of humans on global climate change, I have an opinion, but it is somewhat informed, as I can read the technical literature and I do research in fluid dynamics using computer simulations, although not of the same type as climatologists, but I can read the literature and understand the computer code.

    Still, it is only an opinion. Climate science is not where I am interested.

    Pope Francis does have backgrounds in theological areas and he has an obligation to write about the possible moral and societal consequences of global climate change and he can assume, ex hypothesi, that humans are the major driving force, but in no way does he have an informed scientific position on the subject, himself, based on actual research and study, I suspect.

    That is okay, if he has good, unbiased advisors on the subject. To that, I cannot speak, because I am not up on who his science advisors are.

    The Chicken

  26. TonyO says:

    Chicken, great comment. Fantastic.

    That, my friends, is an example of not-saying-more-than-you-are-qualified-to-say.

  27. JabbaPapa says:

    Masked Chicken :

    In essence, he has the equivalent of an associates in science degree from a community college

    And ? So what ? My point was, rather, that Mr Lawler with his degree in political philosophy is not terribly well-placed to engage in the critique of the present methodology of climate science, in fact rather more poorly placed than the Pope, who has dozens if not hundreds of people advising him whose job it is to understand this manner of questions.

    Take note, I’m offering no critique of that methodology either, as I understand enough about the theory and particulars of scientific methodology to realise that the particular methodologies of that particular scientific discipline are outside my grasp.

    Nevertheless, Mr Lawler’s suggestion : “Man-made climate change either is or is not a scientific reality” remains very poorly conceived, even from the “easier” point of view of the general methodology of Science.

  28. Semper Gumby says:

    Phil Lawler wrote: “A spiritual leader weighing in on a scientific debate, Francis is obviously out of his element.”

    That appears to be the case. In Laudato Si Francis wrote:

    “A very solid scientific consensus indicates that we are presently witnessing a disturbing warming…It is true that there are other factors (such as volcanic activity, variations in the earth’s orbit and axis, the solar cycle), yet a number of scientific studies indicate that most global warming in recent decades is due to the great concentration of greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide, methane, nitrogen oxides and others) released mainly as a result of human activity.”

    Absent from Laudato Si is a discussion of the occasional distortion and fabrication of climate data to advance the “warmist” position. Or that status, wealth, and power are often motivating factors for “warmists” in politics, academia, entertainment, and media. Or the physical threats made by certain “warmists,” scientists and non-scientists, against those scientists and non-scientists who maintain a healthy skepticism about this matter. Furthermore, some scientists are hypothesizing global cooling this century, which, if that scenario proves accurate, has important implications for human health, crop yields, maritime navigation, and other factors.

    While there are more recent analyses of the flaws with the methodology of the “warmist” position and the problematic personal behavior of many, if not most, “warmists,” Dr. Fred Singer made a key moral observation in the August 2007 issue of Imprimis that the current pontificate would do well to comprehend:

    “Climate will continue to change, as it always has in the past, warming and cooling on different time scales and for different reasons, regardless of human action. I would also argue that—should it occur—a modest warming would be on the whole beneficial.

    “This is not to say that we don’t face a serious problem. But the problem is political. Because of the mistaken idea that governments can and must do something about climate, pressures are building that have the potential of distorting energy policies in a way that will severely damage national economies, decrease standards of living, and increase poverty. This misdi-rection of resources will adversely affect human health and welfare in industrialized nations, and even more in developing nations. Thus it could well lead to increased social tensions within nations and conflict between them.”

  29. acardnal says:

    “There is no more certain recipe for a dysfunctional society than a population dominated by the children of broken homes.” – “Lost Shepherd,” Philip Lawler

  30. chantgirl says:

    Malta- That argument might work except for the fact that Pope Francis broadcast his intentions very early on in his pontificate when he resurrected the defeated (under JPII and Benedict) theological musings of Cardinal Kasper.

    We cannot judge the souls of adulterers, but we can make judgments about their public actions. We cannot judge the soul of Francis, but we can make judgments about his public actions which are objectively harming the Church and her members.

    I was one of the people who had an instant unease at the sight of Francis after his election, even though I knew nothing about the man other than the fact that he was a Jesuit (perhaps the cause of my unease ;) and at first I tried incredible mental gymnastics to explain away to myself so many bizarre statements and actions. At some point we have to acknowledge the weight of evidence staring us in the face. While I am no closer to understanding the mind of Francis than I was the day of his election, his actions and words are impossible to ignore. I truthfully don’t know if we are dealing with wickedness, mental illness, or extreme naivete, but we need to be praying for Francis, the Church, the poor souls being led astray, and the Cardinals who seem to be either snake-bit and paralyzed, or compromised. We also need to look honestly at the facts and not sweep them under the rug.

    It’s going to take a miracle to right this ship.

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