Bergoglio’s Naturalism has no Answer…
Francis Stumped — Can’t Answer Child’s Question about Suffering, says “There is no Answer”
We have long said that the religion Francis promotes is not that of genuine Catholicism, but rather an empty greeting-card spirituality that thrives on platitudes about “love”, “brotherhood”, “encounter”, “dialogue”, and anything else the Dalai Lama wouldn’t object to. Such spirituality is totally devoid of anything distinctively Christian, distinctively Catholic, as though our Blessed Lord had come to earth merely to help the poor and ease suffering. This sort of Naturalism is necessarily dumfounded when confronted with the question for the cause and purpose of human suffering, which it cannot explain, because to a Naturalist, happiness is necessarily tied to the enjoyment of the pleasures of this world, which human suffering contradicts.
It comes as no surprise, therefore, that when a sweet little girl in Manila asked the “Pope” when he was visiting the Philippines why God permitted the children there to endure such great suffering, he had no answer. But worse than simply not having an answer, Jorge Bergoglio went one step further and declared, “There is no answer.”
Here’s the story, as reported in a news article published by The Japan Times:
A weeping 12-year-old Philippine girl, asking how God could allow children to become prostitutes, moved Pope Francis on Sunday to hug her and appeal for everyone to show more compassion.
Glyzelle Palomar, a one-time homeless child taken in by a church charity, made her emotional plea during ceremonies at a Catholic university in Manila, ahead of a mass by the pope to millions of faithful later Sunday.
“Many children are abandoned by their parents. Many children get involved in drugs and prostitution,” Palomar told the pope as she stood on stage alongside a 14-year-old boy who also used to be homeless. “Why does God allow these things to happen to us? The children are not guilty of anything.”
Palomar broke down and wept profusely, prompting the 78-year-old pontiff to take her into his arms and hug her for a few seconds. The pope later discarded most of his prepared speech that he was due to give in English, reverting to his native Spanish to deliver an impromptu and heartfelt response.
“She is the only one who has put a question for which there is no answer and she wasn’t even able to express it in words but in tears,” he told the crowd. “The nucleus of your question … almost doesn’t have a reply.”
“(There are) certain realities in life, we only see through eyes that are cleansed with our tears,” the pope said. He urged [the people gathered] “to think, to feel and to do,” asking them to repeat these words in a chorus.
(“Weeping Philippine girl challenges pope on child prostitution; millions gather for final Mass”, The Japan Times, Jan. 18, 2015)
The following video shows the dear little girl’s sincere question about why God permits children to suffer (we had originally posted a different video, one which summarized the encounter in English, but it is no longer available as of May 11, 2015):
Francis is an extremely reckless and dangerous man. Though on the outside, he appears to the world as the “good shepherd” who has “compassion on the multitude” (cf. Jn 10:14; Mk 8:2), what just happened here is the exact opposite of good and compassionate: He has essentially confirmed for the sweet little girl and all in attendance that there is no sense to suffering, that it has no purpose, and we do not know why God permits it. This leaves in people the impression that God is heartless and cruel, that He inflicts senseless evils on people, not sparing even innocent children, and that even if there is an answer, God has withheld it from us and there is nothing we can ultimately do other than cry about it.
This is Francis’ version of “compassion”. True compassion it is not, for these questions have long been answered — it is the age-old problem of evil in the face of an all-good God — and the compassionate thing to do would have been to satisfy these souls’ desire for understanding by explaining the cause and purpose of suffering in light of the Gospel, while at the same time emphasizing that we must show great kindness and share people’s suffering by attempting to lessen their hardships: “Bear ye one another’s burdens; and so you shall fulfill the law of Christ” (Gal 6:2).
Our Blessed Lord taught us: “Blessed are ye that weep now: for you shall laugh” (Lk 6:21) and, “Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted” (Mt 5:5). Francis couldn’t even manage to quote the Gospel? If he felt stumped, taken by surprise, couldn’t he at least have said something along the lines of, “You raise an important question, which I will answer in my next discourse”? Instead, Francis does the worst thing he could have done: He claims that there is no answer, which of course is a lie and makes the all-loving True God look like a wicked monster.
What surer way is there to make people lose Faith in God — or begin to have an aversion for Him and get angry at Him — than to say that there is no answer to the problem of suffering, especially the suffering of children and innocent people?
Francis is not compassionate; he is cruel. The world will laud him as compassionate, but in truth he is blocking the door of salvation for countless souls. The girl got a hug, which helped her emotionally at that moment; but she did not get the Truth, which would have benefited her soul unto eternity.
Why, then, do children suffer? Why are pain and evil in this world? Why does God allow it all? In a nutshell: because suffering is supernaturally meritorious and necessary for our salvation. But let’s back up a moment, recall some fundamental truths, and then flesh out this answer.
The suffering of this world is ultimately rooted in original sin, but of course Modernists and Naturalists like Francis deny original sin (including Benedict XVI, by the way), and this is why they are clueless in the face of the harsh reality of its consequences. All the descendants of Adam are the progeny of a fallen race. With the first sin, death and suffering came into the world (cf. Gen 3:16-19; Rom 5:12); they are a punishment for the disobedience of Adam, a punishment we “inherit”, as it were, in virtue of being members of his race and having lost sanctifying grace (cf. Ps 50:7). Added to original sin is personal sin, and though little children have not committed personal sin, they are affected by the sins (negligences, etc.) of others, and so they lamentably suffer. We must ease their suffering as much as we can (corporal works of mercy), but we must also provide them with spiritual instruction and baptize them (spiritual works of mercy) so that not only their bodies can be saved, but more importantly, their souls.
The Catholic Church’s Universal Doctor, St. Thomas Aquinas, taught as follows regarding the matter of human suffering and worldly ills:
According to the Catholic Faith we must hold without any doubt whatever that death and all such ills of the present life are a punishment of original sin….
…Sometimes indeed such ills are ordained not as a punishment of some sin, but as a help against future sin, or for progress in virtue, either of him who suffers it or of another. For as the Lord says in John 9:3, of the man born blind, “Neither has this man sinned, nor his parents, but the works of God were to be made manifest in him,” which served to promote human salvation. But the very fact that man is in such a condition that he must be helped, either to avoid sin, or to advance in virtue, by means of these misfortunes or defects, pertains to the weakness of human nature, which derives from the sin of our first parent, just as the fact that the body of man is so disposed that it needs surgery to cure it, pertains to its weakness. And therefore all these ills correspond to original sin as a concomitant punishment.
(St. Thomas Aquinas, De Malo, q. 5, a. 4; trans. by John A. Oesterle & Jean T. Oesterle as Aquinas, On Evil [Notre Dame, IN: University of Notre Dame Press, 2001], pp. 222-224.)
Readers who are interested in studying the theological and philosophical issues surrounding the problem of evil in greater depth may wish to obtain a copy of St. Thomas’ De Malo (such as this English translation here), or consult parallel texts, such as Summa Theologica, I-II, q. 85, a. 5; q. 87, aa. 7-8; II-II, q. 164, a. 1.
For most readers, however, an in-depth theological explanation will prove too theoretical and academic and not sufficiently practical. To understand the practical purpose of suffering, we recommend not complicated theological treatises but instead something that can be read with great benefit by anyone, such as Fr. Edward Leen’s masterful work, Why the Cross?.
The following brief excerpt gives a glimpse of the profound wisdom offered by Fr. Leen on this question:
The thoughtful ones of earth contemplating the scene presented by a human activity that continually changes its purpose and is powerless to assign itself any prupose that human reason cannot instantly question, must feel the pathos of much well-meaning and humanitarian effort. Great generosity is shown and real kindness is spent in praiseworthy attempts to arrest the ravages of mortality, especially amongs the young. “Save the children” is an appeal that finds a ready response in the hearts of the humane and the kindly. Not with cynicism, but with real sympathy, one may ask, “Save them for what?” Is it for the adult life that frets itself away in vain endeavours to assign itself an adequate reason for living? Is it worth while [sic] to preserve children for what any person would logically confess to be not worth while? [Footnote: There is question only of those who have not the view of the aims and objects of life as furnished by the true faith or even by sound philosophy.] Is this charity of the kind-hearted dictated by the hope that somehow life for these children may prove different to what it has been for those who have tried to save them from death and disease? Are there grounds for hope that the little ones when come to adult age will light on, by chance, a solution of the problem of existence that has evaded their grown-up benefactors? What is the use of bestowing health unless there can be given with it the key to such a use of life as will issue in happiness? Life is a precious gift when it is accompanied by the knowledge of how to live rightly and the means to exercise this right living.
Death is not a break, but a stepping stone by which one passes from one stage to another in the same existence. But man will perversely and blindly strive to effect a cleavage in that line and persuade himself that the good of the human life that precedes death can be different from the good of human life that follows death. The result is that he is necessarily at cross-purposes with God. It is not surprising that the creature, seeking to gain the goal of life — namely happiness — by a use of life’s powers and energies at variance with the design of the Creator, should be continually frustrated in his main object, should enjoy no peace, and should be involved in contradiction and become a prey to perpetual dissatisfaction. What is the way out of this impasse? The way out is through a thorough understanding of the religion of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and a practice based on such understanding.
(Rev. Edward Leen, Why the Cross? [London: Sheed & Ward, 1938], pp. 23-24,35-36)
Did you get that? Fr. Leen, as any real Catholic would, says that the only way to true happiness, both in this life and in the next, is to know, love, and serve our Lord Jesus Christ in His Church and according to the True Religion He founded. There is no interreligious, ecumenical, or humanist alternative. Compare and contrast that with the asinine and totally non-Catholic “10 Tips for Happiness” given by “Pope” Francis in July of 2014.
Francis is not a Catholic but a Naturalist. Naturalism cannot explain human suffering because it denies original sin, from which all suffering stems, and the purpose of suffering is ultimately supernatural (more on this below). Hence his absurd and unacceptable claim, “There is no answer.” Francis’ position is based on a mischaracterization of the Redeemer’s mission as primarily one of curing physical ills rather than freeing mankind from the bondage of the devil.
In the following passage, Fr. Leen describes Francis’ Naturalist position to a tee:
The [Gospel] passages that reveal Jesus in the exercise of works of mercy, in healing disease, in consoling grief and in overcoming death, are given an undue emphasis. In this way the central truth is obscured, the truth, namely, that the conflict of the Redeemer was primarily with spiritual evil and only incidentally with physical evil. His purpose was to banish from earth the ills that appear to God as such, not those that appear so to the pain-dreading nature of man… The gospel is not a record of a mor less successful philanthropic mission.
…To Christians, who persist in thinking that the function of Christianity is to provide men with good things and banish from their life evil things — understanding by good and evil what appear such to fallen human nature — life will speedily prove unintelligible. To men with such views the mystery of pain becomes insoluble. In the face of the harsh realities of existence their belief stands condemned. They have no answer to give to the ever-recurring question: if God is kind and good and tender towards human suffering, why does suffering continue to be not only for those that deserve it, but also for those who do not?
That Jesus, in His power and goodness, did not put an end to all human suffering shows that, in His eyes, suffering is not the real source of human unhappiness.
(Rev. Edward Leen, Why the Cross? [London: Sheed & Ward, 1938], pp. 54-56; italics given, underlining added.)
BAM! Fr. Leen puts Francis in his place, roughly 75 years ahead of time. Modernists and Naturalists cannot explain human suffering, neither in its cause nor in its purpose.
That’s because the purpose is supernatural: God permits us to suffer because suffering purifies us, and we must be purified before we can enter Heaven: “There shall not enter into it any thing defiled…” (Apoc 21:27). Since God is perfectly holy, indeed the source and fountain of all holiness, nothing can enter into His presence that is not cleansed from all sin and imperfection. As God loves us and desires us to be with Him in eternity, enjoying the Beatific Vision, for which we were created and which is the ultimate goal of all human existence, He sends us sufferings so that all obstacles that stand between us and Him can be perfectly removed so that we can indeed attain to the end for which we were created. He would not do so if He did not love us, for one does not seek to bring to perfection that which one does not love: “For whom the Lord loveth, he chastiseth; and he scourgeth every son whom he receiveth” (Heb 12:6).
Why did Francis not tell the sweet child and all in attendance that suffering, if accepted through God’s grace, is actually a gift and a great blessing, as it serves to detach us from this imperfect world and enables us to get closer to God and is thus a means to happiness? Francis is not compassionate — he is cruel. The meaning, purpose, cause, importance, and even beauty of suffering can only be understood in the true religion revealed by God, the Catholic religion. This is obviously something Francis does not believe.
By the way, January 2015 was not the first time Bergoglio claimed that “there is no answer” to why children suffer. In December 2013, he said as much in one of his many infamous interviews. His exact words were: “One man who has been a life mentor for me is [Russian author Fyodor] Dostoevskij and his explicit and implicit question ‘Why do children suffer?’ has always gone round in my heart. There is no explanation” (source).
Bergoglio, who constantly talks about how we ought to preach the Gospel always, never actually does so. On the contrary, he keeps people from the Gospel even when they are specifically asking for it. Francis has his own gospel, which is little more than a glorified humanitarianism, as though the purpose of Christ’s coming had been simply to encourage us to comfort the afflicted and feed the hungry.
Now, of course in a situation such as the one under consideration here, where a 12-year-old girl asks a question and bursts out in tears from her own experience of terrifying hardship, one cannot simply give an academic answer and walk away. This would be insufficient and coldhearted indeed (cf. Jas 2:14-16). Of course compassion must be shown (as we already said above), but such compassion cannot come at the expense of truth, nor — as is the case here — at the price of scandalizing the questioner by lying to her, claiming that there is no answer. One is reminded of these words of Christ: “And which of you, if he ask his father bread, will he give him a stone? or a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent?” (Lk 11:11-12). Now we know: Francis will. The little girl asked for bread, and she got a stone. She asked for a fish and received a serpent. Nicely wrapped with a bow on top, to be sure, but a stone and a serpent nonetheless.
Think about it: What has Francis done for this little girl — how has he helped her? He did not help her at all; on the contrary, he implicitly told the sweet girl that all her suffering was in vain, that there was no answer to why she had been through so much. He left her and millions of souls who listened to him in the belief that God is cruel and that whatever suffering they experience is because they have “done something wrong” — like the karma of the New Agers, where the more good you do, the better you fare, and the worse you are, the more punishment is coming your way. Not exactly the biblical Gospel.
If Francis is so concerned about easing suffering, why does he not attempt to save people from an eternity of suffering in hell? By telling the world that there is no answer to why we (or at least children) suffer, he has just confirmed innumerable souls on the path to perdition. This is not Christ; this is Antichrist.
As Fr. Leen indicated, we can only come to terms with the problems of the world and see them in their true light by restoring and seeing all things in Christ (cf. Pope St. Pius X, Encyclical E Supremi, 1903), not by deflating the true Christ and caricaturing Him as a nice chap who helped the poor and taught many good things, just like (supposedly) Mohammed and Confucius and Buddha and Krishna and the rest. This is not the True Gospel but the false gospel of Antichrist (cf. 1 Jn 4:3).
Pope St. Pius X identified and blasted this very false gospel, this Christ-denying pseudo-humanitarianism, in his marvelous Apostolic Letter against the French Sillonist movement, which was a forerunner of Vatican II and the gospel of man, as it attempted to maintain a naturalist-humanist alternative to the Christian (i.e. Catholic) order to solve social problems. Read the following lines by this incorrupt Pope-Saint, and ask yourself if what Pius X condemns here isn’t exactly what Francis and the Vatican II Church have been promoting:
And now, overwhelmed with the deepest sadness, We ask Ourselves, Venerable Brethren, what has become of the Catholicism of the Sillon? Alas! this organization which formerly afforded such promising expectations, this limpid and impetuous stream, has been harnessed in its course by the modern enemies of the Church, and is now no more than a miserable affluent of the great movement of apostasy being organized in every country for the establishment of a One-World Church which shall have neither dogmas, nor hierarchy, neither discipline for the mind, nor curb for the passions, and which, under the pretext of freedom and human dignity, would bring back to the world (if such a Church could overcome) the reign of legalized cunning and force, and the oppression of the weak, and of all those who toil and suffer.
We wish to draw your attention, Venerable Brethren, to this distortion of the Gospel and to the sacred character of Our Lord Jesus Christ, God and man, prevailing within the Sillon and elsewhere. As soon as the social question is being approached, it is the fashion in some quarters to first put aside the divinity of Jesus Christ, and then to mention only His unlimited clemency, His compassion for all human miseries, and His pressing exhortations to the love of our neighbor and to the brotherhood of men. True, Jesus has loved us with an immense, infinite love, and He came on earth to suffer and die so that, gathered around Him in justice and love, motivated by the same sentiments of mutual charity, all men might live in peace and happiness.
But for the realization of this temporal and eternal happiness, He has laid down with supreme authority the condition that we must belong to His Flock, that we must accept His doctrine, that we must practice virtue, and that we must accept the teaching and guidance of Peter and his successors.
Further, whilst Jesus was kind to sinners and to those who went astray, He did not respect their false ideas, however sincere they might have appeared. He loved them all, but He instructed them in order to convert them and save them. Whilst He called to Himself in order to comfort them, those who toiled and suffered, it was not to preach to them the jealousy of a chimerical equality. Whilst He lifted up the lowly, it was not to instill in them the sentiment of a dignity independent from, and rebellious against, the duty of obedience. Whilst His heart overflowed with gentleness for the souls of good-will, He could also arm Himself with holy indignation against the profaners of the House of God, against the wretched men who scandalized the little ones, against the authorities who crush the people with the weight of heavy burdens without putting out a hand to lift them.
He was as strong as He was gentle. He reproved, threatened, chastised, knowing, and teaching us that fear is the beginning of wisdom, and that it is sometimes proper for a man to cut off an offending limb to save his body.
Finally, He did not announce for future society the reign of an ideal happiness from which suffering would be banished; but, by His lessons and by His example, He traced the path of the happiness which is possible on earth and of the perfect happiness in heaven: the royal way of the Cross. These are teachings that it would be wrong to apply only to one’s personal life in order to win eternal salvation; these are eminently social teachings, and they show in Our Lord Jesus Christ something quite different from an inconsistent and impotent humanitarianism.
(Pope St. Pius X, Apostolic Letter Notre Charge Apostolique [“Our Apostolic Mandate”], 1910; underlining and pargraph breaks added.)
See for yourself, then, that the Gospel preached by Pope St. Pius X and all true Popes is not the gospel of Francis and his Modernist predecessors back to John XXIII. These two groups — the true Popes until 1958 and the impostors since then — cannot both be right. Now just guess which of these camps represents genuine Roman Catholicism.
Francis’ religion does not have an answer to the girl’s question about why children suffer; the Catholic religion does. Let this be one more piece of evidence to you that the religion preached and practiced by Jorge Bergoglio is not in fact the Catholic religion of the ages.