Homo couple blessing reaction round-up…
Surveying the Landscape after ‘Fiducia Supplicans’
When in 2016 ‘Pope’ Francis released the so-called Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia, great confusion and drawn-out debates over its interpretation followed. Did the document really permit people who live in open adultery to receive Holy Communion without repentance? Yes, it did, but not everyone was willing to accept that that was indeed what the ‘Pope’ was saying. We chronicled the civil war in Novus Ordo Land over this document here:
A similar thing happened in 2018, when Francis decided that the death penalty, clearly approved by God in both the Old and New Testaments as well as Sacred Tradition and the perennial magisterial teaching of the Church, was now “inadmissible” and “contrary to the Gospel”, and revised the so-called Catechism of the Catholic Church accordingly:
What just happened this past Monday with regard to the blessing of couples ‘in irregular situations’, especially sodomites, however, will make the Amoris Laetitia and capital punishment battles look like child’s play by comparison. The Vatican declaration Fiducia Supplicans has unleashed utter chaos just in time for Christmas:
- ‘Pope’ Francis Green-Lights Blessings of Sodomite Couples
- Vatican Allows Blessings of ‘Irregular’ Couples: An Initial Commentary and Analysis (PODCAST)
The reason that this time around everything is so much worse is that, unlike in the other two cases just mentioned, permission for blessing couples in same-sex unions involves a visual element that cannot be ignored.
When Craig and Luke, or Alice and Karen, come before the presbyter to be blessed together, perhaps holding hands, this is no longer just a theoretical issue for the mind. It is a visual acceptance of the perverted couple as a couple, right then and there, and no amount of hairsplitting will change that. It simply won’t matter what some official document says, or if Michael Lofton has made another video.
Enter James Martin, S.J.
We can consider a concrete example already. The intrepid Novus Ordo Jesuit ‘Fr.’ James Martin — who has been Francis’ beloved advisor for a while now and whom we have disaffectionately nicknamed ‘Hellboy’ — has long been a trailblazer on these things, and therefore it is not surprising that he’s given us a preview of what to expect for this coming weekend and especially Christmas Day.
In a tweet of Dec. 19, 2023, he excitedly announced that he had conferred one of those new ‘irregular’ blessings on “my friends Jason and Damian”. Here is how that looked (notice their hands):
(image: New York Times/James Estrin; cropped)
Some people decided to do some digging on Jason and Damian, who, by the way, are a ‘married’ couple with the same last name. We’ll spare you the unedifying details, but let’s just say that what you can find about them on the internet doesn’t exactly scream “humbly trying to live the Gospel more faithfully”.
On Outreach, Martin’s ‘ministry’ affirming perverts in their depraved affections and acts, the wicked Jesuit calls the new Vatican declaration “a huge step forward for LGBTQ Catholics”. There is no doubt it is indeed a step forward, except what lies just ahead of them is the eternal fires of hell, so turning around would be the more sensible thing to do.
Meanwhile, just as this post was being prepared, Martin’s Outreach site published the rest of the story on that picture above, and it really lets the cat out of the bag: “…Damian and I show that it is possible to be a thriving, married, gay Catholic couple”, says the unrepentant sodomite Jason. There is no question that untold other ‘married’ sodomites will try to get their Novus Ordo blessing now, and the fact that blasphemies are already proliferating is hardly surprising.
In any case, the day of the release of Fiducia Supplicans, the official Vatican news portal declared accurately: “Doctrinal declaration opens possibility of blessing couples in irregular situations”. Yes, indeed, it is couples who can now be blessed, not simply individuals.
The same day, Vatican News’ propagandist-in-chief, Andrea Tornielli, published an article spinning the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith (DDF) decision on blessings as a matter of trying to draw sodomites and adulterers out of their sins, when in actual fact it legitimizes their status as a couple. After all, if they were truly interested in being drawn to God and away from sin, they could just ask for a blessing individually. Alas, Tornielli doubled down by publishing a follow-up article today.
Reaction of the World’s Novus Ordo Bishops
A particular role in the reception of Fiducia Supplicans is naturally played by the world’s ‘Catholic bishops’, i.e. by the Novus Ordo bishops in communion with the false pope Francis, either individually or collectively as shepherds of a diocese or even an entire nation. Interestingly enough, the reaction around the globe has been mixed.
In the United States, the USCCB released a conspicuously terse statement saying very little. The forcibly retired ‘Bp.’ Joseph Strickland was among the first to speak out, urging his colleagues to reject the provisions of the new document. That ‘Cardinal’ Blase Cupich of Chicago would endorse the evil legislation as a “step forward”, was not hard to predict. ‘Abp.’ Samuel Aquila of Denver remained rather matter-of-fact about it. More on the “mixed US reaction” is available at Crux and also at Catholic World Report.
The news site of the apostate German bishops’ conference called the DDF declaration “a bang in the Vatican”, and indeed it is a bang heard around the world. Most of the country’s bishops are happy about the development, not surprisingly, and are celebrating it as a “real Christmas present”.
In Africa, the matter is a bit different, and even “local priests and laypeople do not hesitate to express their incomprehension”. The bishops of Zambia, for example, have outright forbidden their priests from blessing homo couples.
In Norway, ‘Bp.’ Erik Varden tries to be positive about Fiducia Supplicans.
In France, ‘Abp.’ Hervé Giraud of Sens expressed his joy that he is now allowed to bless pervert couples.
In Switzerland, Francis and Fernandez are getting strongly-worded pushback from ‘Bp.’ Marian Eleganti, auxiliary of Chur, who pointed out levelheadedly: “Orthodoxy and orthopraxy … must not be placed in an opposing or contradictory position to one another, as has been done constantly since the Council and in this pontificate.”
In one diocese in the Netherlands, auxiliary ‘Bp.’ Robert Mutsaerts unhappily pleads with Francis to “clarify” his “diabolical ambiguity”, as if the arsonist were interested in putting out the fire he himself started. Confusion is the whole point!
The entire bishops’ conference of Poland has made clear that blessing homo couples is not something they will permit, regardless of what the new Vatican document says.
In Kazakhstan, ‘Abp.’ Tomas Peta and auxiliary Athanasius Schneider unequivocally condemned and banned the blessing of sodomite couples, writing in a statement that “we exhort and prohibit priests and the faithful of the Archdiocese of Saint Mary in Astana from accepting or performing any form of blessing whatsoever of couples in an irregular situation and same-sex couples.”
In the United Kingdom, hundreds of clerics belonging to the British Confraternity of Catholic Clergy have “issued a position paper declaring that any blessings of same-sex couples ‘are pastorally and practically inadmissible’.”
In Austria, the head of the country’s episcopal conference, ‘Abp.’ Franz Lackner, opined that with the release of Fiducia Supplicans, it is no longer permitted to refuse a blessing to a sodomite or otherwise immoral couple.
The Novus Ordo bishops of Ukraine released a statement warning about “danger in ambiguous formulations that cause divergent interpretations among the faithful. What we perceive as lacking in the document is that the Gospel calls sinners to conversion, and without a call to leave the sinful life of homosexual couples, the blessing may look like an approval.”
In short: Many Novus Ordo bishops are voicing support, and many are voicing criticism, with many in between. Who’s saying what can be found in this summary and also in this one. Oh, and in this one too.
Reactions from Clergy, Laity, Journalists, Commentators
At The Catholic Thing, the Capuchin ‘Fr.’ Thomas Weinandy makes the refreshingly candid and level-headed observation that “to bless couples in irregular marriages or same-sex couples without giving the impression that the Church is not validating their sexual activity is a charade.” Unfortunately, however, he tries to escape the obvious conundrum that Fiducia Supplicans introduces by proposing “that any pontifical teaching or teaching from bishops that overtly and deliberately contradicts the perennial teaching of previous councils and pontiffs is not magisterial teaching, precisely because it does not accord with past magisterial doctrinal teaching.”
But that’s not how the magisterium can work without falling into absurdity. Whether or not something is part of the Catholic magisterium cannot be determined by the content of the teaching but must be determined by a priori criteria that stipulate by whom a doctrine is taught and in what manner. If something is known to be taught under such conditions, then it can be accepted safely and must be assented to. That is the whole point of there being a magisterium in the first place. If one already had to know ahead of time (and through other means) whether what the magisterium teaches is true or not in order to know whether it is in fact magisterial, then an obvious dilemma would follow (think catch-22), and then one would no longer be taught by the magisterium but basically sit in judgment on it. The known truth (or safety) of a magisterial teaching, and its binding nature, is precisely the consequence of it being an act of the magisterium. It cannot, therefore, be also its precondition.
The Lefebvrist Society of St. Pius X has, of course, denounced the declaration, calling it a “scandalous text” that employs “semantic squirming” and “introduces a seed of deep division and will do incalculable harm in the Church”. The SSPX asks: “If a woman wanting an abortion asks a priest to bless her so that all goes well, must he grant her a blessing?” The Superior General, Fr. Davide Pagliarani, has issued a statement of his own.
Historian Roberto DeMattei says the document “marks one of the lowest points of Pope Francis’ pontificate” and notes that “a very grave sin was committed by those who promulgated and signed this scandalous statement”.
Novus Ordo apologist Steve Kellmeyer, whom we have criticized a couple of times on this web site, bluntly calls out the evil of Fiducia Supplicans. In fact, his frustration with other aspects of Novus Ordo theology, too, is palpable.
Recognizing the revolutionary character of Fiducia Supplicans, German dogmatic theologian Michael Seewald sees potential also for other previously rejected ideas to be admitted by the magisterium in the future, such as the ordination of women.
At Catholic Culture, Phil Lawler, author of Lost Shepherd, points out that the new document “allows (encourages?) Catholic priests to maintain a sort of ritual purity, saying that they have not treated a homosexual union as a marriage, while in the eyes of the world they have done exactly that.”
Another ‘ministry’ aimed at making perverts comfortable in their perversions is New Ways Ministry, which Francis has explicitly praised in the recent past. In a post of Dec. 18, they call Fiducia Supplicans an “early Christmas gift to LGBTQ+ Catholics”.
At Crisis, Eric Sammons provides a critique of Fiducia Supplicans and thinks he can square the circle by affirming, on the one hand, that Francis is the Pope of the Catholic Church, and on the other, that blessing same-sex unions is something “the Church cannot do, no matter what Cardinal Fernández or even Pope Francis might say”.
Over at First Things, senior editor Dan Hitchens uses astronomy instead of theology to allow Francis to still be the Vicar of Christ.
At Catholic World Report, Christopher Altieri is amused by the whole controversy and writes: “As far as this scribbler is concerned, the real and only question regarding Fiducia supplicans is: What did Francis know about Rupnik and when did he know it?”
Writing for Where Peter Is, Pedro Gabriel, who has defended Francis’ infernal exhortation Amoris Laetitia using the argument that adultery could just be a venial sin, naturally has no problem with Fiducia Supplicans, which he believes “seeks to implement a proper understanding of simple, spontaneous, and non-liturgical blessings that can be imparted unconditionally upon sinners to help them and console them, without legitimizing any behavior contrary to perennial Church doctrine.”
In a very readable essay for Catholic World Report, Novus Ordo theologian Larry Chapp candidly calls Fiducia Supplicans a “disaster” and rightly observes that differentiating between blessings that are liturgical/sacramental and those that aren’t “is a distinction that smacks of a clever theological parlor room trick rather than of a genuine theological development. Cardinal Fernandez calls it a development of doctrine, but it is not evident how this constitutes a true and organic development of the doctrines concerning blessings instead of just some slight-of-hand in order to achieve a predetermined result.” Touché!
And Chapp doubles down: “… the text reads like a conclusion in search of an argument. The only reason for such distinctions between different kinds of blessings—and the only reason for inventing a new kind of ‘non-liturgical, non-sacramental’ kind of blessing—is to justify blessing people in sinful sexual unions while still being able to claim that there is nothing ‘formal’ taking place.”
Writing for The Stream, John Zmirak makes the important observation that what Francis has done here is “set up faithful priests to sell their souls or get sued”. He criticizes “disingenuous professional Catholics who live off the faithful’s dime, and are still trying to hoodwink them that Pope Francis is a Catholic.”
At the Daily Compass, Luisella Scrosati shows how Francis “accelerates the revolution”.
For those who insist that doctrine hasn’t changed, Michael Sean Winters makes an insightful observation at the falsely so-called National Catholic Reporter: “The shift Francis intends is, at once, less exact and more profound than a doctrinal shift. What Francis has been trying to achieve for many years is to relocate the place of doctrine within the magisterium of the church, specifically to insist that doctrine serve the good of souls, not the other way round.”
The Rev. John Zuhlsdorf, who used to play confident popesplainer for years until reality caught up with him, warns of frightful consequences: “A blessing invokes the names of the Most Holy Trinity, naming the Father, and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Their very names are sacred. Invoking them to bestow blessings, graces, is decidedly non-trivial.”
At Life Site, Matthew McCusker analyzes the document but notes at the outset: “Fiducia Supplicans possesses no coherent narrative, no coherent structure, no coherent argument. It cannot therefore be analyzed in a straightforward way.” He points out that it is a “fundamentally deceptive text, which follows the course typical of the Modernists who, as Pope St. Pius X warned, ‘seem not unfrequently to advocate now one doctrine now another so that one would be disposed to regard them as vague and doubtful’.”
At The Remnant, Michael Matt notes that Francis’ true legacy is the normalization of sodomy.
Of course we also need to understand that there is, on the one hand, the strict letter of Fiducia Supplicans, and then there is the ‘spirit’ of the document, and we know how much Francis detests a rigid and supposedly Pharisaical ‘clinging to rules’ rather than ‘discerning the Spirit’ and ‘loving’ others, as he once again emphasized in today’s Christmas address to the Roman curia.
‘Archbishop’ Carlo Maria Viganò has also weighed in and does not mince words in his reaction: “The delirious Declaration Fiducia Supplicans, recently published by the parody of the former Holy Office renamed the Dicastery, definitively pierces the veil of hypocrisy and deception of the Bergoglian hierarchy, showing these false shepherds for what they really are: servants of Satan and his most zealous allies, beginning with the usurper who sits – an abomination of desolation – on the Throne of Peter.”
Having plenty of experience working in a parish, the married-with-children Novus Ordo priest Dwight Longenecker, a convert from Protestantism, is under no illusions of how things will play out in practice with this new document. Furthermore, he points out where he “take[s] issue specifically with Fiducia Supplicans: it talks about ‘expanding’ the pastoral aspect of blessings, but in fact weakens the understanding of blessings.”
The Rev. Jeffrey Kirby, similarly, lays out the pastoral nightmare Fiducia Supplicans will cause for Novus Ordo clergy.
“The document’s implementation seems likely to produce outcomes as varied as the text’s interpretations”, canon lawyer Ed Condon predicts at The Pillar. A German canonist, Thomas Schüller, says he “expect[s] a culture war in the Catholic Church between reform and conservative forces. It could face the fate of the Anglican Church, whose secession triggered questions such as celibacy and remarriage.”
Those still trying to carry the water for the ‘orthodoxy’ of Fiducia Supplicans include Michael Lofton, Dawn Eden Goldstein, Trent Horn, and David Gordon. One of Fernandez’s predecessors at the Vatican doctrinal office, however, the Modernist ‘Cardinal’ Gerhard Ludwig Müller, is not impressed, denouncing blessings for gay couples as straight-up blasphemy.
At Where Peter Is, the notorious Bergoglio defender Mike Lewis summarizes: “Overall, Fiducia Supplicans seeks to balance adherence to traditional doctrines with a more compassionate and inclusive pastoral approach, recognizing the complexity and pastoral situations today and the spiritual needs of the faithful.” Oh, all those complexities!
That some writers are still living in fantasy land, unwilling to accept the reality that is right in front of them, has been proved by one Thomas Colsy, writing for the UK’s Catholic Herald: “In their eagerness to reassure the masses how warm and friendly they are towards LGBT+ individuals, [Pope Francis and Cardinal Fernandez] convinced everyone they had softened the Catholic stance on sexual ethics by releasing a document which actually doubles down on those same teachings.”
At Reason and Theology, the ultimate ‘popesplainer’ Michael Lofton has released a ‘catechism’ on Fiducia Supplicans in which he promotes his own reading of the text. The Q&A provided at Zenit, by contrast, relies almost entirely on direct quotes from the document.
In a video conversation with Robert Royal, the Novus Ordo canon lawyer Gerald Murray, a frequent guest on EWTN’s The World Over with Raymond Arroyo, made clear that this new document is basically ludicrous:
For the Catholic Unscripted podcast, Katherine Bennett, Mark Lambert, and Gavin Ashenden spent 49 minutes trying to figure out what to make of the new Vatican declaration:
The Pillar has put together its own reaction round-up from many countries all over the world, and it’s worth taking a peek at.
For this coming long Christmas weekend, you can bet your bottom dollar there will be some self-appointed homo-couple-blessing ‘compliance police’ going around to ensure that no pervert couple will be refused a blessing. Some members of the Society of Judas are already standing by.
By the way: We don’t want to miss the opportunity to recommend The Book of Gomorrah written by St. Peter Damian, a Doctor of the Church. (Purchasing a copy through this link supports Novus Ordo Watch at no additional cost to you.) It is a refreshing and much-needed reality check on this sordid topic of sodomy and sexual immorality in general.
So, where will the New Church go from here? We suspect that Fiducia Supplicans marks the beginning of an epoch rather than an end. Although, for the time being, the Vatican II Church does not permit ‘irregular’ blessings to be given in a liturgical setting, it won’t be terribly difficult to change that in the future. Francis or his successor could simply invoke the ‘god of surprises’ or, better yet, claim that the ‘concrete lived experience’ of the ‘faithful people of God’ (which, as we have recently been told, is a source of divine revelation) has now made integration into the liturgy admissible and desirable. Any confusion with a nuptial blessing will be ruled out, of course (wink, wink), because the ‘faithful people of God’ will have attained to such maturity by then that they can discern the difference. See how this works?
Ladies and gentlemen, the reason why Bergoglio can do all these things with impunity and without any interference from the Holy Spirit is quite simply the fact that he is not the Pope. Only a true Pope is assisted by the Holy Ghost:
The Pope has the divine promises; even in his human weaknesses, he is invincible and unshakable; he is the messenger of truth and justice, the principle of the unity of the Church; his voice denounces errors, idolatries, superstitions; he condemns iniquities; he makes charity and virtue loved.
(Pope Pius XII, Address Ancora Una Volta, Feb. 20, 1949)
Many people mistakenly think that if Francis is not a true Pope, then the Church has defected. However, the exact opposite is true: The Church has defected, and proved itself to be a fraud, not if Francis isn’t the Pope, but if he is.
But, alas, too many still accept Francis is the Pope of the Catholic Church. It doesn’t matter if they follow him or resist him, the mere recognition of him as the legitimate Roman Pontiff is all he needs to wield his power, which he uses to inflict untold damage on souls.
For the time being, the popesplainers may be able to get away with telling their hapless viewers (and themselves) that Fiducia Supplicans is an orthodox text, and anyone who says otherwise doesn’t understand it or is trying to deceive; but events in the next few days and weeks will quickly bury their clever analyses and arguments. The false “false narrative” narrative will not survive in the long run.
Image source: Shutterstock (PhotoSky)