My previous post ended with the promise of open warfare coming in the near future; in the wake of the Four Cardinals’ letter. But even I did not expect it to arrive so quickly.
In the interview with Edward Pentin released yesterday, Cardinal Burke lays out the reasons for the letter. Obviously intended as a direct strike at the heart of FrancisHeresy contained in Amoris Laetitia, +Burke speaks plainly about what happens next. It’s canonical, it is hostile, and there is no turning back: OPEN WARFARE kiddos:
What happens if the Holy Father does not respond to your act of justice and charity and fails to give the clarification of the Church’s teaching that you hope to achieve?
Then we would have to address that situation. There is, in the Tradition of the Church, the practice of correction of the Roman Pontiff. It is something that is clearly quite rare. But if there is no response to these questions, then I would say that it would be a question of taking a formal act of correction of a serious error.
In a conflict between ecclesial authority and the Sacred Tradition of the Church, which one is binding on the believer and who has the authority to determine this?
What’s binding is the Tradition. Ecclesial authority exists only in service of the Tradition. I think of that passage of St. Paul in the [Letter to the] Galatians (1:8), that if “even an angel should preach unto you any Gospel other than that which we preached unto you, let him be anathema.”
If the Pope were to teach grave error or heresy, which lawful authority can declare this and what would be the consequences?
It is the duty in such cases, and historically it has happened, of cardinals and bishops to make clear that the Pope is teaching error and to ask him to correct it.
The language is in the strongest of terms. Read it all HERE. Think for a moment, if it has come to this, how many private interventions must there have been? Even worse, imagine how disgusting must have been the responses to those private interventions, for it to come down to this?
Now, we do have some questions we need to ask. The first is, what has caused +Burke’s change of heart since April? When Amoris Laetitia first came out, and the backlash from faithful Catholics was immediate, he famously threw all of us under the bus:
“some Catholic media are describing (AL) as a revolution in the Church, as a radical departure from the teaching and practice of the Church…Such a view of the document is both a source of wonder and confusion to the faithful and potentially a source of scandal…It is also a disservice to the nature of the document as the fruit of the Synod of Bishops” HERE
If you read the whole article from April, he seemed to have been engaged in an absurd exercise of Move Along, nothing to see here. Absurd to the point I wondered if he had actually read the document. So my first question is, if it was clear to him back in April that everything was fine, why now does there need to be correction? Maybe those Catholic media who called it out from the very day of its publication can get some credit?
Contrast the April quote with this from yesterday:
Are you hearing this concern about confusion a lot?
Everywhere I go I hear it. Priests are divided from one another, priests from bishops, bishops among themselves. There’s a tremendous division that has set in in the Church…
Why is Chapter 8 of Amoris Laetitia of such particular concern?
Because it has been the font of all of these confused discussions…
That is quite a reversal. Did +Burke genuinely not think this was going to happen at the time he made his comments in April? Was he trying in charity to force an orthodox reading of AL? I don’t know how that could be possible, but there are few other ways to explain it.
It’s almost as if he’s had a vision revealing his role in solving this crisis. One thought that popped into my head is, I wonder if he knows the contents of the Third Secret and now sees his role in it.
A final question is whether there will be retractions from others, like Fr. Longenecker, who used +Burke’s April statement to brutally excoriate faithful bloggers.
“Cardinal Burke is right to say they have caused scandal because their self righteous, ignorant and arrogant writings have caused others to stumble, lose faith in the church and to question the authority of the Holy Father and the church they say they love.” HERE
The vindication is satisfying, but that’s hardly what is important here. What is important is that we finally have a throw down. It’s happening.