New Chaos Homily denounces All-Or-Nothing Morality as “heretical”…

No More Black and White:
Francis’ Fifty Shades of Grey

image: (CC BY 2.0)

This is the day Michael Voris must have been waiting for: Francis finally condemns heretics! Quick, everyone: Fire up the Vortex cameras and get everything ready on the web site to report on this breaking news!

On second thought, maybe not… Unfortunately for Mr. Voris and his Church Militant crew, Francis condemns as heretical precisely the kind of Catholic Michael Voris considers himself to be. Ouch! (Tim Haines, he means you too!)

On Thursday, June 9, Francis once again outdid himself in the sermon he gave at the daily “Mass” at Casa Santa Marta, this time on the Gospel of St. Matthew 5:20-26. The homily was so bad that we have to present it in its entirety and interject our commentary throughout, which we will do below.

The text is from the translated transcription/summary provided by Vatican Radio:

The Italian original can be found on the Vatican web site here. For those who feel really brave, there is a video report on the junk sermon here.

For easier reading, we will present the text from Vatican Radio in red and interject our comments in black:

[begin sermon analysis]

Pope Francis warned on Thursday against an excessive rigidity, saying those within the Church who tell us “it’s this or nothing” are heretics and not Catholics. His remarks came during the morning Mass on Thursday celebrated at the Santa Marta residence.

Coming from Francis, this is more than amusing. Remember, we are talking about a man who once said with regard to his teaching on ecumenism that it “may perhaps be a heresy, I don’t know”. So, listen up! This is going to be good.

In his homily the Pope reflected on the harm caused by Churchmen who do the opposite of what they preach and urged them to free themselves from a rigid idealism that prevents reconciliation between each other.

So there is harm caused by people in the church who “do the opposite of what they preach”. Okay, no issue there — in fact, we’ll remember that for later. It’ll come in handy.

Taking his cue from Jesus’ warning to his disciples that unless their righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees they will not enter into the Kingdom of Heaven, Pope Francis stressed the importance of Christian realism. Jesus, he said, asks us to go beyond the laws and love God and neighbour, stressing that whoever is angry with their brother will be liable to judgement.

Ah yes, we must indeed go beyond the laws, but what does this mean? Clearly, as is evident from the context, it means we must not stick to a legalistic and merely external observance of the of the law but understand its essence and keep not just its letter but especially its spirit. And thus our Lord teaches:

You have heard that it was said to them of old: Thou shalt not kill. And whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment. But I say to you, that whosoever is angry with his brother, shall be in danger of the judgment. And whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council. And whosoever shall say, Thou Fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.

(Matthew 5:21-22)

In other words, it is not enough to merely not commit the sin of murder — we must also refrain from sinful anger, from contumely, from hatred, etc. That’s why the Church in her catechisms covers these sins under sins against the Fifth Commandment (“Thou shalt not kill”).

Our Lord illustrates this further by using an even clearer example:

You have heard that it was said to them of old: Thou shalt not commit adultery. But I say to you, that whosoever shall look on a woman to lust after her, hath already committed adultery with her in his heart.

(Matthew 5:27-28)

These two verses were not part of the Gospel reading for the day, but that’s beside the point — the point is that our Lord requires us to go beyond the mere literal law and observe also its spirit. Not only is the physical act of adultery wrong, but any sort of consent to sexual pleasure outside of wedlock, even if it is but entertained in thought, is likewise sinful. That is what the commandment actually means.

But Francis, of course, turns things on their head — he’s loosening the commandment to be even less meaningful than its legalistic literal interpretation. Ever since the exhortation Amoris Laetitia, Francis has downgraded all commandments into “ideals” that we are merely “encouraged” to strive for — in other words, they are but pious suggestions. And so for Francis, “Thou shalt not commit adultery” is turned into, “It would be better if you did not commit adultery, but do the best you can.” He didn’t address adultery in that day’s homily, but this is the kind of situational ethics he’s been advocating since at least April 8 of this year, when the exhortation was released. (For our devastating analysis and critique of Amoris Laetitia, be sure to listen to our free podcast here.)

Insulting our brother is like giving a slap to his soul

The Pope said we have “a very creative vocabulary for insulting others” but stressed that such insults are a sin and are akin to killing because they are giving a slap to our brother’s soul and to his dignity.

No doubt, some people have an incredibly extensive and creative vocabulary when it comes to insulting people — especially Jorge Bergoglio. From the very beginning of his pseudo-pontificate, Francis has made headlines hurling the most bizarre and hilarious epithets at people during his homilies, interviews, and speeches. Words like “Renaissance prince”, “parrot Christian”, and “triumphalist” were heard; using Holy Matrimony as God prescribes was denounced as “breeding like rabbits”; people were told not to have “funeral faces”; and nuns were advised not to put on “flight-attendant smiles”.

Even an official, magisterial document contains Bergoglian insults: The “Apostolic” Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium criticizes the attitude of “querulous and disillusioned pessimists, ‘sourpusses’” (n. 85) and slams the “self-absorbed promethean neopelagianism of those who ultimately trust only in their own powers and feel superior to others because they observe certain rules or remain intransigently faithful to a particular Catholic style from the past” (n. 94). Good thing Francis doesn’t judge! Imagine the words he’d use if he did!

Things got so bad that a Novus Ordo blog decided to collect the colorful Bergoglian expressions into “Pope Francis’ Little Book of Insults” (caution: the linked web site advocates homosexuality), and even the secular The Week published an article entitled “Pope Francis, Insult Comic.” Here at Novus Ordo Watch we decided to bestow on the Argentinian insulter the title “Vicar of Snark” so that he is at least the vicar of something.

The Novus Ordo blogger “Fr.” Timothy Finigan once tried to spin Francis’ unguarded jaw muscles into simply a return to traditional “papal invective”, although he missed the obvious difference that the true Popes used invective to condemn heresies and heretics, whereas Francis’ insults are typically directed at Catholics. Minor detail.

So, yes, Francis certainly knows something about that “very creative vocabulary for insulting others”. It is curious to see him say now that “such insults are a sin and are akin to killing”. So what does that say about him then? And is the problem not exacerbated when we consider that in addition to the “killing” that is done through insults, hypocrisy makes the whole matter even worse since, as we saw earlier, there is “harm caused by Churchmen who do the opposite of what they preach”?

In any case, Francis has hypocritically railed against insulting speech before, so this isn’t new, although it is amusing.

Noting the presence of several children at the Mass, Pope Francis urged them to stay calm, saying the preaching of a child in a church is much more beautiful than that of a priest, bishop or of the Pope.

Yeah, well, that’s really cute but just silly. The child doesn’t preach; the child cries, makes a fuss, and distracts people. That’s not the baby’s fault — not at all. But it’s also not a sermon. On the other hand, if Francis is admitting here that fussing and screaming uncontrollably has more value than the Modernist bilge that continually pours from his lips, we are not going to disagree. At least the screaming of a child isn’t heretical, blasphemous, or otherwise damaging to souls.

A Churchman who does the opposite of what he preaches is a scandal

Yeah, no kidding…

Jesus, said the Pope, urged his confused people to look beyond and go forward.  But at the same time, Christ warned about the harm caused to the people of God by Christians who do not follow their own teachings.

Actually, we don’t remember the “go forward” part, but okay.

“How many times do we in the Church hear these things: how many times!  ‘But that priest, that man or that woman from the Catholic Action, that bishop, or that Pope tell us we must do this this way!’ and then they do the opposite. This is the scandal that wounds the people and prevents the people of God from growing and going forward. It doesn’t free them. 

Oh no, someone was kept from “going forward”! Heaven forbid!

So, what is Francis saying? Of course it is a scandal when you preach one thing and then do another. But the solution isn’t to therefore modify what you preach but to actually practice it — come on!

Forward isn’t always the best direction to go…

In addition, these people had seen the rigidity of those scribes and Pharisees and when a prophet came to give them a bit of joy, they (the scribes and Pharisees) persecuted them and even murdered them; there was no place for prophets there.  And Jesus said to them, to the Pharisees: ‘you have killed the prophets, you have persecuted the prophets: those who were bringing fresh air.’”

Oh yeah, that’s it: The prophets were murdered for spreading “joy” and “fresh air”! Why this blabbering fool hasn’t yet been taken away in a straightjacket by the Swiss Guards and shipped back to Buenos Aires, is anyone’s guess.

Follow the healthy realism of the Church: No to idealism and rigidity

Pope Francis urged his listeners to recall how Jesus’s request for generosity and holiness is all about going forward and always looking out beyond ourselves. This, he explained, frees us from the rigidity of the laws and from an idealism that harms us. 

Ah, but what were the Pharisees’ “laws” that were so “rigid”? The answer is found in the following passage:

And the Pharisees and scribes asked him: Why do not thy disciples walk according to the tradition of the ancients, but they eat bread with common hands? But he answering, said to them: Well did Isaias prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written: This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. And in vain do they worship me, teaching doctrines and precepts of men. For leaving the commandment of God, you hold the tradition of men, the washing of pots and of cups: and many other things you do like to these. And he said to them: Well do you make void the commandment of God, that you may keep your own tradition. For Moses said: Honour thy father and thy mother; and He that shall curse father or mother, dying let him die. But you say: If a man shall say to his father or mother, Corban, (which is a gift,) whatsoever is from me, shall profit thee. And further you suffer him not to do any thing for his father or mother, making void the word of God by your own tradition, which you have given forth. And many other such like things you do.

(Mark 7:5-13; underlining added.)

Our Lord condemned the laws and traditions of men that were in contradiction to the comamndments of God — sound familiar? You know, like vitiating the commandment “Thou shalt not commit adultery” through some made-up principle of “follow your conscience and move forward”, for example. That kind of tradition of men, Mr. Bergoglio.

Jesus knows only too well our nature, said the Pope, and asks us to seek reconciliation whenever we have quarrelled with somebody.  He also teaches us a healthy realism, saying there are so many times “we can’t be perfect”  but “do what you can do and settle your disagreements.”

Funny, but the Gospel text Francis is referring to doesn’t mention anything about “do what you can do” since you “can’t be perfect”. On the contrary. Our Blessed Lord, who indeed knows our nature but came precisely in order to elevate and sanctify it through His grace (minor detail!), declared in the very same chapter of the same Gospel: “Be you therefore perfect, as also your heavenly Father is perfect” (Mt 5:48). That’s a far cry from Francis’ message of “Give it a try; let’s see how well you do.”

So, there is that Bergoglian tradition of men again, cleverly disguised as “nobody’s perfect”. It’s no accident that Francis didn’t mention grace at all; he acts as though we must try to reach holiness through our own strength, and our Lord merely “accompanies” us in this futile attempt. This is the ancient heresy of Pelagianism.

“This (is the) healthy realism of the Catholic Church: the Church never teaches us ‘or this or that.’ That is not Catholic. The Church says to us: ‘this and that.’ ‘Strive for perfectionism: reconcile with your brother. Do not insult him. Love him. And if there is a problem, at the very least settle your differences so that war doesn’t break out.’ This (is) the healthy realism of Catholicism. It is not Catholic (to say) ‘or this or nothing:’ This is not Catholic, this is heretical.

Causing further confusion in the minds of his hapless hearers, Francis briefly mentions “perfectionism”, appearing to endorse it, when at the same time he had already said “we can’t be perfect” and ought not to fall for the “idealism that harms us” because of the “rigidity of the laws”, to which the antidote is supposed to be this “healthy realism”.

If you don’t buy it, Francis has another epithet for you, one he doesn’t use very often: “heretical”! And of course if there’s one thing Francis can’t tolerate, it’s heresy, right?

Perhaps the contradiction escaped his brilliant mind, but of course it lies in the very nature of heresy (as of any other essence, actually) to be “this” and not “that”: Heresy is the denial of dogma — it is in the “not being that (dogma)” that the “this” (heresy) consists. Vice is not virtue, and virture is not vice; holy matrimony is not adultery, and adultery is not holy matrimony; male is not female, and female is not male; a public apostate is not a Pope, and a Pope is not a public apostate. Funny how that works. So, Francis’ entire assertion, aside from being false, is also incredibly stupid because self-refuting.

But does Francis ever really care about heresy? Not exactly. Actual heresy doesn’t bother him one bit — as shown here and here and here, for example (see the full laundry list here). He is the same way towards idolatry, always condemning the metaphorical “idolatries” of money, of certainties (yes!), of economic progess, whatever — but never the literal idolatry of the pagans. Instead of preaching the Gospel to them, he pretends all is well.

So, the Church never teaches us “this or that” but rather “this and that”, eh? There is yet another tradition of men, and not a very bright one at that. Let’s see what Scripture has to say on this:

He that is not with me, is against me: and he that gathereth not with me, scattereth.

(Matthew 12:30; Luke 11:23)

Bear not the yoke with unbelievers. For what participation hath justice with injustice? Or what fellowship hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? Or what part hath the faithful with the unbeliever? And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God; as God saith: I will dwell in them, and walk among them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore, Go out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing: And I will receive you; and I will be a Father to you; and you shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.

(2 Corinthians 6:14-18)

And to the angel of the church of Laodicea, write: These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, who is the beginning of the creation of God: I know thy works, that thou art neither cold, nor hot. I would thou wert cold, or hot. But because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold, not hot, I will begin to vomit thee out of my mouth.

(Apocalypse 3:14-16)

Clearly, for Jorge Bergoglio, it is not the case that he who is not with Christ is against Him — instead, whoever is not fully with Him is still partially with Him. Welcome to the “fresh air” the prophet Francis brings! We’ve created a special meme to illustrate this latest absurdity — feel free to share it:


(click image to enlarge)

Francis here simply pushes more gradualism, as he already did in Amoris Laetitia, effectively turning sin and vice into simply an imperfect participation in virtue. Vaticanist Giuseppe Nardi has labeled this gradualism Erreichbarkeitsmoral, a German term that essentially means “morality of what can be achieved” — in other words, “just do the best you can”.

This is diabolical. But then that won’t faze Francis either, since what is diabolical is now also godly, just less so. “What concord hath Christ with Belial?”, St. Paul asks rhetorically. Francis would respond: “Well, let’s not fall into the idealist trap of either-or. Let’s be realistic and say that Belial did his best under the circumstances, and nobody’s perfect, so Christ accompanies.”

Most people in the world believe this blathering apostate is the Vicar of Christ, the Pope of the Catholic Church. We live in absurd times, ladies and gentlemen.

Jesus always knows how to accompany us, he gives us the ideal, he accompanies us towards the ideal, He frees us from the chains of the laws’ rigidity and tells us: ‘But do that up to the point that you are capable.’ And he understands us very well.  He is our Lord and this is what he teaches us.”

See, there we go again with Jorge’s tradition of men: The divine law is now merely an “ideal” and God does not require us to attain it (vs. Mt 5:48). Instead, Francis recommends a halfhearted, “give it a try”. You know, like St. Paul did when he taught:

Know you not that they that run in the race, all run indeed, but one receiveth the prize? So run that you may obtain. And every one that striveth for the mastery, refraineth himself from all things: and they indeed that they may receive a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible one. I therefore so run, not as at an uncertainty: I so fight, not as one beating the air: But I chastise my body, and bring it into subjection: lest perhaps, when I have preached to others, I myself should become a castaway.

(1 Corinthians 9:24-27)

Christ didn’t free us from the “rigidity” of the law — on the contrary, as He Himself explicitly points out in the very chapter about which Francis preaches in his homily:

Do not think that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets. I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill. For amen I say unto you, till heaven and earth pass, one jot, or one tittle shall not pass of the law, till all be fulfilled. He therefore that shall break one of these least commandments, and shall so teach men, shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven.”

(Matthew 5:17-19)

Rather, Christ came to suffer and die for us so that we would now be able to keep the moral law through grace — and not just externally by a precise observance of the strict letter, but internally as well by observing its spirit! This was clearly prophesied in the Old Testament:

For I will take you from among the Gentiles, and will gather you together out of all the countries, and will bring you into your own land. And I will pour upon you clean water, and you shall be cleansed from all your filthiness, and I will cleanse you from all your idols. And I will give you a new heart, and put a new spirit within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and will give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my spirit in the midst of you: and I will cause you to walk in my commandments, and to keep my judgments, and do them.

(Ezechiel 36:24-27)

But Francis preaches an entirely different gospel (cf. Gal 1:8-9). He makes it seem as though Jesus Christ came, not to help us “walk in my commandments and do them” but simply to take away our sins whenever we fail in this “ideal”! To say otherwise, for him, is to embrace the “heresy” of “either-or”, “all-or-nothing”. In his Modernist religion, there is no more black and white: Everything is now grey, and even that comes in 50 shades!

Reconciling amongst ourselves is the tiny sanctity of negotiation

Pope Francis concluded his homily by reminding how Jesus exhorted us to avoid hypocrisy and do what we can and at the very least avoid disputes amongst ourselves by coming to an agreement.

“And allow me to use this word that seems a bit strange: it’s the tiny sanctity of negotiations. ‘So, I can’t do everything but I want to do everything, therefore I reach an agreement with you, at least we don’t trade insults, we don’t wage a war and we can all live in peace.’ Jesus is a great person! He frees us from all our miseries and also from that idealism which is not Catholic. Let us implore our Lord to teach us, first to escape from all rigidity but also to go out beyond ourselves, so we can adore and praise God who teaches us to be reconciled amongst ourselves and who also teaches us to reach an agreement up to the point that we are able to do so.”

Whatever. That’s the best response to this final paragraph of gobbledygook.

[end sermon analysis]

As always, Francis’ preaching on June 9 was a mess, a rambling stream of consciousness peppered with heresy, error, and any number of gaffes, outrageous assertions, and misinterpretations of the biblical text. As a textbook Modernist, Francis loves to speak in unclear language because this way he can do the most damage. It causes confusion, people hear in his words whatever they wish, he can’t easily be pinned down on something, and whenever someone challenges him, he can always say, “That’s not what I meant.” But the damage done is all the same.

Our battle in this life is to attain perfection, to defeat the world, the flesh, and the devil, and it is very much an all-or-nothing battle. Either we make it, or we don’t. Either we become saints, or we join the damned. There is no in-between. Only those will be admitted into Heaven who are entirely pure and undefiled: “There shall not enter into it any thing defiled”, the book of the Apocalypse warns (Apoc 21:27), and if we are not wholly cleansed from all attachments to sin in this life and have atoned for all temporal punishment, then we will need to undergo a final purgation in the cleansing fires of purgatory.

Purgatory, in fact, is the ultimate proof of how much our Lord Himself insists on the “all-or-nothing” reality of the moral law: Whatever is still even slightly grey, so to speak, will be made white before the soul can finally behold his God. Of this our Lord assured us, again in the very same chapter of St. Matthew’s Gospel, lest we be misled: “Amen I say to thee, thou shalt not go out from thence till thou repay the last farthing” (Mt 5:26).

We’ll conclude this post with a quick scriptural reality check regarding Bergoglio’s “god of surprises” and his never-ending push for novelty:

Thus saith the Lord: Stand ye on the ways, and see and ask for the old paths which is the good way, and walk ye in it: and you shall find refreshment for your souls. And they said: we will not walk.

(Jeremias 6:16)

Sound familiar?

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