UPDATE 30 July 2019
Folks, this is a “big deal”.
What’s being done to the John Paul II Institute is emblematic of what is happening – and is going to happen – in Rome and in the rest of the Church outside of Rome.
It’s a signal from HQ to the sleeper cells: “It’s time to come out of hiding and STRIKE!”
I will remind the readers that in January 2018, after Maurizio Chiodi (whom I mention below) gave his pro-contraception talk at the Jesuit-run Gregorian University, I described him as a “canary in the mineshaft”. With Kasper’s address and the two rigged Family Synods, to Amoris laetitia and Chiodi and the changes at the Pontifical Academy for Life etc. etc., we’ve been watching a brilliantly executed campaign of “creeping incrementalism”. They are patient, friends, and move slowly but inexorably toward their goals like a bone-crushing juggernaut. Bone by bone. Nothing too dramatic at the beginning, but inexorably forward with the conviction that potential opposition is too fragmented to make a difference.
This is why I have often – as Michael Matt has too – called for a stop to the parochial posturing of some in the conservative and traditional side of life in the Church. Libs set aside their pet issues temporarily for the sake of combining forces and working for the overturning of the status quo. Ever wonder how libs, dems, feminists, LGBTSJs etc. seem to coddle even Islamic terror? The enemy of my enemy. See Andrew McCarthy on that [US HERE – UK HERE]. Conservatives tend to defend their tiny wrinkles of turf to the point that they couldn’t coordinate enough to run a bird cage, much less mount a strong offense.
Pay attention to this one and gird your loins.
See what I added, below.
___ Originally published Published on: Jul 29, 2019
When I was in the Theology section at the Pontifical Lateran University, I would see at the end one of the hallways the doors leading into the John Paul II Institute for Marriage and the Family, founded at the sainted Pope’s behest after Familiaris consortio by the eventual Cardinal (and one of the four Dubia brothers) Carlo Caffarra. It was a great institution which activated John Paul’s teachings.
Francis renamed the place and gave it a new mission in 2017. Then he appointed new personnel to carry out that mission. Co-founder of the Sant’Egidio group and a postulator for the cause of Oscar Romero Archbp. Vincenzo Paglia reigns over the place now as Grand Chancellor of the Lateran. You might have read also about Paglia that there is a seemingly homo-erotic fresco image of him in a fresco (which he commissioned) in the cathedral of his former Diocese of Terni-Narni-Amelia. The President, now, is Pierangelo Sequeri.
Part of the mission of the new team at the Institute seems to be part of an over-arching agenda: diminish the magisterial teachings of John Paul II. That’s, frankly, at the core of the Five Dubia of the Four Cardinals, among whom was Caffarra, probably the main author of the sumbitted Dubia. The question, dubia, center on affirmations in Familiaris consortio and Veritatis splendor.
In any event, the now-former President of the JP Institute, Msgr Livio Melina, a tenured-professor of Moral Theology, was recently sacked from his teaching post. Also sacked, Stanslaw Gryiegel, a long-time friend of John Paul who in 2018 criticized those in the circle of Francis who were undermining the teachings of Humane vitae on contraception. You might recall that Maurizio Chiodi – a disciple of the infamous darling of the Fishwrap and Curran-types and Hell’s Bible, Bernard Häring – in a talk at the Gregorian (Jesuits) suggested that Amoria laetitia perhaps made artificial contraception acceptable. Chiodi was – incredibly – appointed to the Pontifical Academy for Life (headed by Paglia).
It seems that the new statues of JPII Institute 2.0 make no reference to the teachings of JPII or to Humanae vitae.
In Rome, it is said that Paglia and the “Pagliani” are conducting a purge of the last remaining “Wojtylians”.
No joke. In the headline, below, Card. Scola, former head of the Lateran (when I was there) and therefore head of the JPII Institute says: “Purge”
What’s next? Disappear people out of airplanes?
Comment moderation is ON.
UPDATE 30 July
Today at Il Foglio there is a piece about this.
Fuori il wojtyliano
Studenti in rivolta all’Istituto Giovanni Paolo II. Mons. Paglia tace, i nuovi vertici dell’Istituto replicano
The Wojtylian out
Students in revolt at the John Paul II Institute. Archbp. Paglia silent, the new administration of the Institute reply
The Pagliani are circling the wagons and denouncing those who have dared to object to the purge. I imagine that they will soon be consulting AOC and Rep. Cummings about the best ways to attack their opponents without actually making arguments.
Also, at Catholic World Report there is an offering by George Weigel about this anti-JPII pogrom. Of course, Weigel has a vested interest in the matter. He is one of the great proponents of all things Wojtylian.
The Vandals sack Rome….again
An exercise in raw intellectual vandalism has been underway in Rome since July 23: what was originally known as the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Marriage and the Family has been peremptorily but systematically stripped of its most distinguished faculty, and its core courses in fundamental moral theology have been cancelled. Concurrently, academics known to be opposed to the teaching of Humanae Vitae on the appropriate means of regulating fertility and the teaching of Veritatis Splendor on intrinsically evil acts are being appointed to teach at the reconfigured Institute, which is housed at the Pontifical Lateran University – the pope’s own institution of higher learning. Sixteen hundred nine years after the first Vandal sack of Rime, they’re at it again, although this time the chief vandal wears an archbishop’s zucchetto.
Quod non fecerunt vandali, faciunt Pagliarini.
Then Weigel gives some background on the post-Conciliar conservative/liberal divide into Communio/Consilum camps. It’s helpful if you don’t know that history. The creation of the John Paul Institute was part of the sainted Pope’s strategic design to shore up Catholic moral theology, which was (and still is) swirling around the drain. But the modernists remained underground, biding their time. Now they have exploded to the surface again in a rampage of liberal weeds across virtually every field in the Church.
Back to Weigel.
So these stubborn and, it now seems, ruthless men bided their time. In recent years, they have continued to lose every serious debate on the nature of the moral life, on the morality of conjugal life, on sacramental discipline, and on the ethics of human love; and the more intelligent among them know it, or at least fear that that’s the case. So in a bizarre repetition of the anti-Modernist purge of theological faculties that followed Pius X’s 1907 encyclical Pascendi, they have now abandoned argument and resorted to thuggery and brute force in order to win what they had failed to win by scholarly debate and persuasion. [And interesting contrapasso. However, I remind the readership that that early anti-Modernist action didn’t work. Modernists tucked their heads down and awaited their day and there were groups who systematically infiltrated the Church. Remember that the Enemy is really good at being an enemy. Hell’s game is the long game. Hate is patient also, but not kind.]
That unbecoming score-settling is why the senior faculty of the John Paul II Institute was abruptly dismissed last week, and that is why there is absolutely no guarantee that, in the immediate future, the Institute that bears his name will have any resemblance to what John Paul II intended for it. Cardinal Angelo Scola, emeritus archbishop of Milan and a former rector of the Pontifical Lateran University, described what is afoot in Rome these days as “torpedoing” the John Paul II Institute through an academic “purge.” 150 students of the Institute signed a letter saying that the changes underway will destroy the institute’s identity and mission; in the present Roman circumstances, they have about as much chance of being heard as Marshal Mikhail Tukhachevsky had at the Moscow Purge Trials in 1937-38. [I like the Cultural Revolution comparison, but this works.]
That these Stalinistic acts of intellectual brigandage against the theological and pastoral heritage of Pope St. John Paul II are being carried out by Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia – who came to international attention in 2017 for having commissioned a homoerotic fresco in the apse of the cathedral of Terni-Narni-Amelia – is ironic in the extreme. [Indeed. Or to put it another way, “Il diavolo fa pentole, ma non i coperchi”. The Enemy always shows you what he’s cooking.]
Is there a red hat in Archbishop Paglia’s future? If so, it will be as a reward for knee-capping scholars of impeccable scholarly credentials and personal probity, deeply beloved by their students. One wonders if the Grand-Chancellor-Become-Lord-High-Executioner of the John Paul II Institute has ever read A Man for All Seasons and Thomas More’s devastating response to his betrayal by the grasping bureaucrat, Richard Rich: “Why Richard, it profits a man nothing to give his soul for the whole world…but for Wales?”
Thus the Roman atmosphere of the moment: sulphurous, febrile, and extremely nasty, with more than a whiff of panic about it. This is not the way people behave who believe they are firmly in control and likely to remain that way. Do those who like to imagine that they have gained the upper hand in the War of the Conciliar Succession fear the future? They should. Because, as John Paul II knew, truth will always win out, however long it takes, because error is lifeless and stultifying.
Thus, Weigel. I’m not sure about his suggestion that they are worried about time and that this is panicky. I rather think this is an example of agere sequitur esse… things/people act in accordance with their nature. What do I mean?
Think of the fable of Aesop about the Farmer and Viper.
During a bitterly cold winter a farmer is walking in his field. He finds a viper nearly dead in the snow. In a moment of pity he picks up the viper and puts it inside his coat to warm it and save its life. Having been warmed and revived, the viper promptly bites his rescuer. “Why did you bite me when I was saving your life?” asked the farmer, dying in agony from the venom searing his veins. “What did you expect?” replied the snake. “I’m a viper. That’s what I do.”
What we are seeing is deliberate.
John Paul and Benedict XVI made some head-scratching choices in whom they promoted and whom they didn’t deal with in a timely manner. Should we be surprised that they are now acting as they are? Not a
bite…. sorry… a bit.
Viperas in sinu foverunt iam iamque calefactae mordent.
ROME, July 30, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) — An Italian moral theologian who has argued that “responsible parenthood” can obligate a married couple to use artificial birth control has been invited to teach at the newly established John Paul II Institute in Rome, LifeSite has confirmed.
Two informed sources in Rome told LifeSite that Fr. Maurizio Chiodi, a professor of moral theology at the Northern University of Milan and new member of the Pontifical Academy for Life, has been invited to teach at the new institute, but his official appointment is still pending.
More recently, Fr. Chiodi openly expressed heterodox positions on homosexuality, arguing that we need to go beyond “nature” and consider the possibility that homosexual acts can in certain circumstances be morally good.
From last Sunday’s Gospel reading in the Traditional Roman Rite:
Continuation of the Holy Gospel according to Matthew
R. Glory be to Thee, O Lord.
At that time, Jesus said to His disciples: Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. By their fruits you will know them. Do men gather grapes from thorns, or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore, by their fruits you will know them. Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven; but he who does the will of My Father in heaven shall enter the kingdom of heaven.