12 April 2014

This is Simply Outrageous

And will not God revenge his elect who cry to him day and night? And will he have patience in their regard? I say to you that he will quickly revenge them. But yet the Son of man, when he cometh, shall he find, think you, faith on earth?

Luke 18: 7-8

How long can we expect this kind of utter nonsense in the ecumenical wonderland? From the Foreward to the "Lutheran-Catholic Common Commemoration of the Reformation in 2017":

Martin Luther’s struggle with God drove and defined his whole life. The question, How can I find a gracious God? plagued him constantly. He found the gracious God in the gospel of Jesus Christ. “True theology and the knowledge of God are in the crucified Christ.”

In 2017, Catholic and Lutheran Christians will most fittingly look back on events that occurred 500 years earlier by putting the gospel of Jesus Christ at the center. The gospel should be celebrated and communicated to the people of our time so that the world may believe that God gives Godself to human beings and calls us into communion with Godself and God’s church. Herein lies the basis for our joy in our common faith.

To this joy also belongs a discerning, self-critical look at ourselves, not only in our history, but also today. We Christians have certainly not always been faithful to the gospel; all too often we have conformed ourselves to the thought and behavioral patterns of the surrounding world. Repeatedly, we have stood in the way of the good news of the mercy of God.

Both as individuals and as a community of believers, we all constantly require repentance and reform—encouraged and led by the Holy Spirit. “When our Lord and Master, Jesus Christ, said ‘Repent,’ He called for the entire life of believers to be one of repentance.” Thus reads the opening statement of Luther’s 95 Theses from 1517, which triggered the Reformation movement.

Although this thesis is anything but self-evident today, we Lutheran and Catholic Christians want to take it seriously by directing our critical glance first at ourselves and not at each other. We take as our guiding rule the doctrine of justification, which expresses the message of the gospel and therefore “constantly serves to orient all the teaching and practice of our churches to Christ” (Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification).

The true unity of the church can only exist as unity in the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ. The fact that the struggle for this truth in the sixteenth century led to the loss of unity in Western Christendom belongs to the dark pages of church history. In 2017, we must confess openly that we have been guilty before Christ of damaging the unity of the church. This commemorative year presents us with two challenges: the purification and healing of memories, and the restoration of Christian unity in accordance with the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ (Eph 4:4–6).

You can read the rest if you have a bucket handy. I have two initial thoughts:

1) Luther was an arch-heresiarch who led millions of souls into error and thus endangered their souls. There is nothing to celebrate about him, and nothing to commemorate in any way apart from sorrow and righteous anger.

2) The language used throughout is PC gobbledygook. But the last paragraph is (if taken at face value) heretical. The unity of the Church consists and subsists entirely in the Holy Roman Catholic and Apostolic Church. It always has and always will. Luther, or a million like him, rejecting the Church is their problem, unity-wise. The Church is One. It is one of the marks of her indefectibility.

In fact, there is only one Church of Christ. The Catholic Church. The visible, historical one, ruled by Christ through His Vicar on Earth. There is no such thing as a Lutheran Church, strictly speaking. It is a term to denote a particular set of heresies held in common among its adherents.

I mean, give me a break. Every Catholic on that Commission ought to be reassigned to Outer Mongolia, and the Vatican press office ought to be sacked en masse for actually publishing it.

Of, course, since I penned this post during my Lenten embargo, others have covered it pretty well before you read this. Chris Ferrara just eviscerates this thing here.


YoungCatholicSTL said...

The Belleville Diocese's paper led with a story on the front page this week about how all of Luther's actions were motivated by his love of the Church. I threw-up just reading it. Just stupid how the Church is white-washing his actions now.

Bsdouglass said...

Oct 2017 will be the centennial of Fatima...just sayin.

X said...

I love Luther. If you know your Luther you can win any argument with a Lutheran, or for that matter virtually any protestant (that would of course include most catholics today). He believed in the perpetual virginity of Mary and called birth control a greater atrocity than incest or adultery. He's a very useful heretic, but whatever he is he is certainly not a Lutheran, no not even Missouri Synod.

Anonymous said...

Uhm, so in one fell-swoop, you've swept EVERYTHING that Luther said out the door? WOW. No nuances whatsoever???
Wouldst you prefer the Catholic Church go back to pre-Luther times?
Please let me know immediately. I'd like to give my children money so no matter what I do the rest of my life, if they donate to the church after I die, their gift can get me out of purgatory? “So bald der Pfennig im Kasten klingt, die Selle aus dem Fegfeuer springt!”

Luther didn't set out to create a schism - he was trying to correct some common heretical practices that were fairly common at the time, like buying indulgences. Unfortunately, the church would have done far better to have listened to him, corrected him where wrong but corrected the church's practices when he was correct. Mature, adult conversation back then may have prevented the schism. (Vatican II was an attempt to correct much of what Luther suggested, but in my humble opinion, should have been implemented over a 20 year period, not overnight.)

Yes, dialogue, conversation, and sharing of ideas - are all very dangerous ONLY IF you are paranoid, self-righteous, holier-than-thou, pompous Pharisees who love to condemn instead of engage, castigate instead of commune, and judge instead of listen.

Pretty amazing that some wackjobs in every religion will say that their religion is the only one, true, correct religion, and all the others are full of heresies that lead others to hell.
Remind me: In terms of your 'faith,' what is the difference in certainty that you have about it versus the certainty that fundamental Muslims have about their faith? Sadly, I see far, far, far more things in common than differences.

Final note: the basis of fundamentalism, (totally this blog site) is narcissism. It just is so very convenient that you happen to own the truth while the rest of the planet ... doesn't.

Keep your condemnations coming this week. They sound amazingly similar to the condemnations from the Pharisees and Sadducees this coming Good Friday.


thetimman said...

Sigh, the Church herself teaches, "extra ecclesiam nulla salus". Start with the bull "Unam Sanctam", but there are more. Don't like it? Sorry. You may want to join one of those other groups you admire more and see how it works out. Good luck.

Trent was the response to the heresies of Luther. V2 seems to be an excuse for some to *sigh* and capitulate.

As for the rest, thanks for your many compliments. Pardon any narcissism on my part, but Our Lord did say that if the world hates us, it hated Him first.

St. Corbinian's Bear said...

Just so happens white bread Midwesterners follow the 2000 year old teachings of a rabbi from Judea and his Jewish, Turkish, African and Roman early followers?

Yep. Because that's the religion WE cooked up and like.

Seems to me the ones who "just happen" to be in sole possession of the truth are the people who have come to their not-so-unique conclusions through their oh-so-above-it-all white bread 20th century relativistic posturing.

And are people really still beating the indulgence drum? (Yep, the Church still has, them, you know!)