NEWS: March 26, 2003
Bird’s Eye View of the News
Atila Sinke Guimarães
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WAR: PLEASE DON’T SWALLOW THE BAIT – Since the start of the war readers have been asking me about my position on it. As a foreign writer living in the United States, I don’t think that it is appropriate to give an opinion on internal American politics. The international scope of this war, however, with its wide-scale doctrinal and political implications, morally obliges a Catholic, be he American or not, to take a position. |
Some days ago I read a statement by Fr. Gommar A. De Pauw, J.C.D., founder of the Catholic Traditionalist Movement in 1964, and since then a tireless and valorous fighter for the good cause against Progressivism. Fr. De Pauw takes a strong position in favor of the war. With his status as a known Moral theologian he challenges whosoever in the traditionalist milieu that does not agree with his position to a debate. (For the news release, click here). I am curious to know if anyone will face Fr. De Pauw's serious challenge.
September 11, 2001
The premeditated crime turned to destroy, scare and offend American society. Time - Special Issue 2001
Baghdad, March 20, 2003
The just international punition. Los Angeles Times, March 21, 2003
Far from disagreeing with him, I sent him my compliments. In this letter I expound my position on the topic. Reproducing it here I intend to answer the requests of my readers.
Most Rev. Fr. Gommar De Pauw,
I am writing to compliment you for your public statement on the present day war against Iraq. I agree entirely with your very Catholic position. It is a pleasure to know that among the American Catholic traditionalists there are intellectual leaders like you who had the discernment to correctly apply the Moral principles of just war to the present situation. On the contrary it is sad to see good friends, badly advised, falling into the false dilemma: either peace or support of the ideals of Zionism. This astute trap leads them, in the name of an eventual future danger, to indirectly support Islamic terrorism and make a common front today with the same progressivist representatives whose doctrines they have combated until now.
The Catholic position is not that of Zionism, neither of Islamism, nor of Progressivism. We do not need to swallow one error to be free of the other. With supernatural help, which Our Lady always provides us, Catholics have enough doctrinal weapons to combat each one of these evils at the appropriate time: Sufficit diei malitia sua [Sufficient for the day is the evil thereof (Mt 6:34)].
Asking your precious prayers,
The analysis of this topic continues in Guimarães' book War, Just War
FRUSTRATED INVITATIONS – John Paul II has repeated his invitation for “a common reflection on the ministry of the Bishop of Rome.” Will he be heard this time? This is the third instance that he has invited the ensemble of Protestants and Schismatics to give their input on how they envision a reformed Papacy. The first time was in 1995 when he published his Encyclical Ut unum sint. He suggested then an ecumenical discussion about the conditions for exercising the primacy of “the Bishop of Rome.” That is to say, he wanted to know what points to change in the concept of the Papacy and the way to carry it out in order to make it more agreeable to those false religions.
Five years later, on the occasion of the millennium, he made the same suggestion on a visit to Cairo. There were no echoes that resounded from his call, except from the restricted circle of the International Commission for Anglican-Catholic Dialogue (ARCIC). This commission proposed that the Anglicans could recognize the Pope before coming to a complete doctrinal accord with the Catholic Church. On such proposal an analyst made this comment: “But it is necessary to recognize that the document – The Gift of Authority – making this proposal did not raise any interest outside of the circle of its writers” (Actualité des Religions, March 2003, p. 35). The same commentator went on to explain that the topic itself has no basis in reality since the Anglicans, Protestants and Schismatics are not interested in thinking about general unity given that each is struggling to preserve its own seriously threatened internal cohesion. The Protestants in particular, he said, do not agree with the Papacy on the doctrinal level and lack any practical reason to deal with it now.
In my opinion, this description of the failure of the various attempts to induce other religions to give suggestions for changing the Papacy is a good example of how the self-destruction of the Church is being carried out. It is not being pushed forward by a joint effort of all the various confessions, but rather by the sole desire to reach a preestablished Progressivist goal. The argument that to change the Papacy would favor unity among religions seems only a façade for the destruction desired by Progressivism.
CATHOLIC HIERARCHY ENCOURAGES VIOLENCE – On March 4 the Pastoral Land Commission (PLC), an organ linked to the Brazilian Conference of Catholic Bishops in the state of Rio Grande do Sul, issued a 36-page booklet encouraging landless workers to invade and take over legitimate private properties. According to Fr. Olavo Dotto, coordinator of the PLC, the booklet titled Land, a Gift of God: A Conquest of the People, quotes biblical texts and interprets them to prove the “right of the poor” to the land of others. The 10,000 copies will be distributed by 21 PLCs throughout the countryside of Brazil (Folha de São Paulo, March 7, 2003).
Last year the Catholic Church was the principal force in Brazil behind Lula’s election as president of the country. Now she is paving the way for him to accomplish his Communist goals.
REDUCED TO THE STATUS OF MINOR – America magazine (March 24, p. 4) describes the come-and-go of bills in the Legislatures of Maryland, Kentucky, Nevada, Florida, and New Hampshire that are trying to oblige the Catholic Church to report any case of pedophile abuse by priests to the civil authority. The bills ask for every priest to report any information he receives on a potential pedophile case, even if it would be revealed under the seal of confession. That is, the civil power is trying to oblige the priest to break the seal of confession.
The proposal is obviously absurd, and deserves the complete rejection of all Catholics. I don’t understand how so obtuse an error could be made by civil representatives. Don’t they see that this puts the Catholic Church in the position of victim? If so, why are they doing this? Is it to begin a real religious persecution? Or could it have been indirectly suggested by the Catholic religious authorities themselves in order to win some sympathy and make their situation more comfortable in the pedophile scandal? I don’t have the answer to these questions.
But let me put aside this attempt to violate the seal of confession and go further to analyze the ongoing effort of the civil authority to put order inside the Catholic Church. With the pedophile scandal revealing her position of constant complacency with the guilty priests, the Catholic Church sent an unwritten message to society, implicitly saying that she is no longer able to maintain the moral standards of her own members. In other words, she obliges the civil power to step in to tend to the moral standards of her priests. Because of her incapacity, she de facto receives a legal guardian to take care of her. In juridical terms this situation characterizes reduction to the status of minor.
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