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Quo Vadis, Petre?

Solange Strong Hertz

Book-review on Quo Vadis, Petre? [Where are you going, Peter?] by Atila Sinke Guimarães

Quo Vadis, Petre?

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On the very brink of the third Christian millennium a battle-cry has been sounded for the faithful by Atila Sinke Guimarães. Like St. Michael rallying the faithful angels in heaven with his fundamental “Quis ut Deus?” the author of In the Murky Waters of Vatican II poses the question “Quo Vadis, Petre? “ as the title of a little giant of a book cast in the form of an open letter to John Paul II on the eve of the unprecedented ecumenical celebrations planned by the Vatican for the momentous Jubilee year 2000. It asks, “Peter, where are you heading?” Where indeed?

A special edition to the 11-volume series Eli, Eli, Lamma Sabacthani? the text comprises less than a hundred trenchant, carefully documented pages which can be read at one breathless sitting. Respectful in tone throughout, the opusculum nevertheless pulls no punches in its three part analysis of the forces at work behind the coming attractions.

As the blurb on the back cover discloses, it deals with the coming “new Assisi in Rome, a common martyrology, a trip to Iraq, Israel, Palestine and Arabia, a common declaration of faith with the Jews and Muslims on Mount Sinai, the new requests for pardon.” Pointing out the contradictions inherent in such panreligious agenda with the traditional Magisterium of the Church, it clinches its arguments by demonstrating “the practical failure of ecumenism acknowledged by its participants (the Orthodox, Protestants, Muslims and Jews).”

The expose does not overlook such disturbing possibilities as the virtual beatification of former heretics, schismatics and other outright enemies of the Church by their inclusion in the proposed new martyrology. Also touched on as cause for alarm is the Vatican’s favorable view of the proposal made by the secretary general of the World Council of Churches to call a “universal Christian council” for the year 2000, one “truly ecumenical,” bringing together “all the great families of Christian churches .... so that they may discuss in a collegial atmosphere some of the still unresolved and insurmountable problems of our days - among them the Papacy - in order to give a strong and clear stimulus to the full reconciliation of all the disciples of Jesus.”

In the light of these ominous developments, having shown “how ecumenism, inter-religious dialogue and the festivities prepared for the Millennium do not appear to be in conformance with Catholic doctrine” and that “even for the parties involved these ecumenical activities are, with a frequency worthy of attention, considered to have deteriorated,” the author finds good reason to close his letter by returning to his initial question, “Quo vadis, Petre?”

Please READ THIS BOOK as we all await the answer!


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Solange Hertz is an author and journalist
This book review was first published in The Remnant, July 16, 1999

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