Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Pope on Traditional groups: "Pelagian current. It's like turning back 60 years! They count rosaries... Please, don't laugh."

A portion of the transcript from the Papal audience with the presiding board of the CLAR (the Latin American and Caribbean Confederation of Religious Men and Women - Confederación Latinoamericana y Caribeña de Religiosos y Religiosas) on June 6, 2013, via Rorate Caeli (June 10, 2013):
I share with you two concerns. One is the Pelagian current that there is in the Church at this moment. There are some restorationist groups. I know some, it fell upon me to receive them in Buenos Aires. And one feels as if one goes back 60 years! Before the Council... One feels in 1940... An anecdote, just to illustrate this, it is not to laugh at it, I took it with respect, but it concerns me; when I was elected, I received a letter from one of these groups, and they said: "Your Holiness, we offer you this spiritual treasure: 3,525 rosaries." Why don't they say, 'we pray for you, we ask...', but this thing of counting... And these groups return to practices and to disciplines that I lived through - not you, because you are not old - to disciplines, to things that in that moment took place, but not now, they do not exist today...


Amateur Brain Surgeon said...

Who can disagree with Our Holy Father?

Those benighted bohunks telling their beads and counting them - COUNTING THEM - are stuck in the past that was abandoned at Vatican Two.

As for disagreeing with His Holiness, a Priest write-backer at Rorate observes that we must interpret what the Pope said in the best possible light but that same Priest has aught to say about the Pope having the same duty to interpret in the best possible light what his sheep did.

This latest crude blunder by the Holy Father is yet another example of the modern tendency of Catholic Prelates to impugn the motives of the Faithful even as they excuse the actions of their enemies.

At the highest level of the Catholic Church there is a palpable disgust, if not hatred, of ancient customs and practices and when the benighted bohunks engaged in those customs and practices are not being mocked as superstitious fools, they are merely wearily tolerated as those too dumb to be morally culpable for their Pelagianism.

This Papacy will be a disaster.

Elizabeth said...

Astonishing. Incredible that we actually have a Pope that thinks this way? Lord have mercy. What are we in for next?

Anonymous said...

All due respect to Pope Francis, what concerns me is that when you return to the original post on Rorate Caeli, you find that he lumps the group mentioned here - the group that cares enough to offer thousands of rosaries for him - with the group he says ignores the incarnation, calling them both "elite" currents! It's astonishing, illogical. There is a chasm, a blindness in this thinking, as if he can see only peripherally, cannot cannot see clearly but only with clouded vision.

It reminds me of a sermon I once heard in which the priest was calling the congregation on the carpet for their lack of reverence in receiving Holy Communion. I was with him until he saved the lion's share of his wrath for what he called the "line switchers" - those who would reposition themselves so as to receive Holy Communion only from his consecrated hands and not from a layperson. He completely missed the irony of putting the gum chewers on a par with the few souls who believed in the Real Presence. There's that chasm again.


Anonymous said...

Pope Francis wrote: One is the Pelagian current that there is in the Church at this moment. There are some restorationist groups. I know some, it fell upon me to receive them in Buenos Aires. And one feels as if one goes back 60 years!

Pelagianism is a heresy that denies original sin and basically teach that one earns salvation through one’s own efforts without relying on the grace of God. It seems that he didn’t present evidence that the people who gave him what we used to call a “spiritual bouquet” believe that they earn salvation through their own efforts. Accusing people of heresy is a serious charge. Moreover he is the head of the Church, the Vicar of Christ who is making the charge. If I were one of the people he spoke about I would write a letter to Rome asking for carification ASAP.
I would like to know how he interprets Luke 11:5-8.


Ralph Roister-Doister said...

"Pray for me... that I make mistakes the least possible..."

People prayed for you. They offered 3525 rosaries in your name. You dismissed them as heretics in a sniggering manner, in between references (yet again) to your own sanctified affectations (washing your clothes in your hotel room, etc).

Anyone still mystified about where this pope is headed?

Ralph Roister-Doister said...

I read this item with great distress. I tried to calm myself down by taking my dirty clothes down to the river and beating them on a rock. That usually helps. Then I asked myself, “what is pelagianism anyway?” I dressed myself with my still damp clothes (Franciscan humility prevents me from having more than one pair of jockey shorts – having two socks provoked a crisis of conscience) and consulted my "Encyclopedia of Philosophy," where I found the following:

“The heretical error of Pelagius was his devaluation of the importance of grace. . . . he was more concerned with an exhortation to virtue and moral progress than with the development of Christian doctrine. . . .

“. . . he expressed in his actions and his preaching the conviction that man could achieve salvation and the good life without special help or grace of God.”

Hmm. Does this sound like classic traditional Thomism to you? To me, it sounds much more like the “natural supernaturalism” of De Lubac, with his notion of man as “naturally turned” toward God (and therefore, one might reason, less in need of SPECIAL help or grace). But hush! The article continues:

“Pelagius completely rejected the doctrine of original sin, holding that man is inherently good, and that the sin of Adam was not transmitted to posterity.”

Hmm. Does this explain why those bead-counting traditionalist-pelagians are always scampering to confession? It doesn’t, does it? It DOES help to explain, however, why those staunch Catholic progressives avoid it like the plague.

“The further implications are drawn that it is false that mankind suffered spiritual death through the sin of Adam and that the redemption of man is not due to the grace given by Christ but to the value of Christ’s moral teachings.”

Hmm again. I can’t recall Alphonsus Ligouri, Louis de Montfort or for that matter even Marcel Lefebvre saying anything remotely like that. It sounds like staunch former Catholic progressive Protestantism to me.
So, who ARE these pelagians anyway, Pope Bergoglio??

Perhaps our new pope is confusing pelagian heresy with the actuarial tendencies of some Catholics to count their prayers. Perhaps sound accounting principles offend him by reminding him of the practices of Argentinian bankers and businessmen (anyone with money), who seem to him to exploit The Poor by the very act of drawing breath.

Anonymous said...

“We are not baptized into the hierarchy; do not receive the Cardinals sacramentally; will not spend an eternity in the beatific vision of the pope. … Christ is the point. ...Even if [a Pope] proved to be as bad as some of those who have gone before, even if I find the church, as I have to live with it, a pain in the neck, I should still say that nothing a pope (or a priest) could do or say would make me wish to leave the church, although I might well wish that they would leave. “

— Frank J. Sheed

Lynne said...

"Anyone still mystified about where this pope is headed?"

I'm picturing a train, careening off its tracks...

Sheldon said...


Without prejudice to PP, whose posts are often interesting and certainly provocative, the comments on this blog are what keep me coming back.

Ralph, you're on a roll. With that last comment, who needs Comedy Central? Only, this is Theology on Tap comedy, comedy with insight. Love it!

The comments by various "Anonymous" posters, along with IANS, and (as I saw a moment ago in another post), Jordanes. All very enlightening.

Fantastic blog: and the comments are the cat's meow!

Unknown said...

"At the highest level of the Catholic Church there is a palpable disgust, if not hatred, of ancient customs and practices...."

Haven't you guys figured out yet that the Papacy and the whole Vatican has been hijacked by Calvinists? Call them "Janesians" if you want, but I'll call it like it is: Calvinists. Calvinists are the only ones who love to go around calling everyone else a "Pelagian" despite their not knowing what Pelagius actually taught, and all we've heard from the new Pope since he was installed is essentially "Everyone is a Pelagian but me." Filthy Calvinist scum!