Michael J. New: Reversing Roe V. WadeOctober 30, 2018
Fr. Ed Broom: Church Triumphant: 10 Insights Into the SaintsOctober 30, 2018
And they brought him a man who was deaf and had an impediment in his speech, and they begged him to lay his hand upon him. And taking him aside privately, he put his fingers into his ears, and he spat and touched his tongue; and looking up to heaven, he sighed and said to him, “Ephphata,” that is, “Be opened.” And his ears were opened, and his tongue was released, and he spoke plainly. And he charged them to tell no one; but the more he charged them, the more zealously they proclaimed it. (Mark 7:32–36)
And he said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” And Peter answered, “the Christ of God.” But he charged and commanded them to tell this to no one, saying, “The Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.” (Luke 9:20–22)
Out of respect for the timetable of God, Christ sought to conceal the truth about Himself. From time to time, He encouraged others to do so. In a characteristically vain attempt to do better than God, some contemporary secularists push the notion that concealing the truth is just another way of lying. These secularists lack St. Paul’s compassion. For the apostle counsels the faithful to refrain from actions which, though lawful at heart, may cause those of immature faith to stumble into sin.
This counsel requires that we ponder, in respect of God’s wholesome will (i.e., His goodwill for the whole), not only the intention of our speech and actions but the effect they may have upon others. Lawful actions that proceed from a right heart and conscience may give occasion for sin. Therefore, though in truth they are not unlawful, some actions may be spiritually harmful if done without due regard for the vulnerable minds and spiritual welfare of others. This is particularly true of the actions of those who have vowed before God that they will take special responsibility for their instruction.
In light of these considerations, all Catholics of goodwill must be concerned with the critical condition, rife with self-contradiction, that currently characterizes the posture of the Vatican, and in general the hierarchy of the Church, regarding God’s will. That self-hobbled condition has been tragically on display during the ongoing “Youth Synod” in Rome. Recent reports suggest that what the synod produces will formally maintain the Church’s God-voiced and faithful representation of God’s goodwill for human procreation. But like those whom Christ, in Scripture, charged to be silent, many who seem to be close confidantes of Pope Francis have been declaiming an understanding contrary to God’s instruction.
Like present-day advocates of all manner of licentious, humanly self-idolizing freedoms, these highly placed clerics are surrendering the worship of the body of Christ to the world’s worship of “the body of this death.” On the specious excuse of catering to the young, they deploy language that abets youth’s almost-inevitable bondage to the law in their members. That law speaks with the voice of God for a purpose. It is the Church’s true vocation to recall the young to that purpose.
It is the Church’s true vocation to celebrate the wholesome love of God that dictates that purpose. Instead of caring for the soul of youth, as God understands it, they have consented to become complaisant parrots of the vain account of the soul that currently masquerades as psychology. They consent to do so, even though this specious account of the psyche (soul) intentionally discards the word that is in Christ and God, which, according to our Catholic profession of faith, draws the breath of life into humankind, just as it informs the existence of all creation.
The synod document may use some form of words to pay lip-service to the primordial imperative of God for human procreation. But those words are almost daily contradicted by purveyors of the de-spiritualized psychology of our times. They appear in clerical garb purporting to speak with the knowledge and support of the Church’s single highest authority. They dispraise the self-discipline God’s imperative requires, portraying it as needless and unloving. These sly deceits especially tickle young ears, easing malformed consciences into the velveteen bondage — more than pleasant enough at first, then increasingly stressful and insatiably demanding.
In this context, the formal reiteration of the Church’s true teaching could take on a hypocritically malicious aspect. It’s as if Church authorities are using false teachers to push people toward sin. Then they take pains to remove the excuse of ignorance by formally reiterating the Church’s true teaching. Is this a test? Or a snare, meant to assure harsher punishment for those taken in by it? Or is it just the careless indifference to truth of people who have discarded God and who are willing to wear whatever formal mask best serves the work of separating souls from God?
It will seem like the latter, as long as the hand-servants of soulish deceit continue to enjoy the patronage of the Vatican. Hope (which, by God, is never lacking) may come from quarters such as those of some of the Catholic Bishops in Africa. They live along what is, as it were, the spiritual terminator line. There the work of spreading the Gospel is a matter of everyday living, in the shadow of dying — not Sunday preachments, making light of God’s intention.
Where those who profess true faith may at any moment face the test of martyrdom, it matters very much whether or not the cardinals, bishops and other avowed exemplars of our Catholic faith remain seriously committed to its truth. But highly placed contemporary Catholic hierarchs have utterly disregarded this need, by pretending that the God-denying Communist Party dictators in China have any authority to appoint the bishops who preside over Chinese Catholics. Will such Church authorities be any less careless of Catholics in Africa or anywhere else?
Highly placed bishops and cardinals of the Church seem more interested in sheltering sin-seared consciences than affirming the truth of Christ’s way of salvation for humanity. Rather than strengthening the people of God, they apologize for their faithful adherence to God’s rule and even criticize them for it. When cardinals and bishops behave thus perversely, who else will sow seeds of truth and encourage believers to gather bountiful harvests for Christ?
Who will bear witness to the promise of glory Christ makes to those who are faithful unto death, as good shepherds have helped believers to be in the past? Is that faith the sort of miracle whose age has passed, as some assert and others wrongly believe? Forbid it, Almighty God!
Dr. Alan Keyes served as Assistant Secretary of State for International Organizations under President Ronald Reagan, and ran for president in 1996, 2000 and 2008. He holds a Ph.D. in government from Harvard, and writes at his website Loyal to Liberty.