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August 14, 2009
Why Pope John Paul II should not be canonized
By Eric Giunta

Once again, the Catholic world has been rocked by yet more allegations of sexual impropriety by Legionnaires of Christ founder, the late Fr. Marcial Maciel. It seems the now-disgraced  founder-cum-pervert fathered more children than previously suspected; the latest claimants to  his paternity purport to have evidence that the late Pope John Paul II knew of Maciel's sexual  dalliances, and turned a blind eye to them. (If true, it would confirm the prior journalistic  scholarship of author Jason Berry.)

The allegations highlight what for all too many Catholics is the elephant-in-the-room when  discussing the ills which beset the modern Church: the extent to which the late Pope John Paul  II was an enabler of these perversions, from sexual and liturgical abuse to theological  dissent and the scandal of Catholic politicians who support the most immoral of social  policies with the tacit or express blessings of their Church.

One does not need to deny or disparage the personal sanctity, thoughtful conservatism, or  religious orthodoxy of the late Pontiff in order to acknowledge that his Pontificate, by all  accounts, was a glorious failure. Yes, he aided in the fall of Eastern European Communism, but  the Pope of Rome is not primarily a mover and shaker of state politics, but a Christian pastor  whose mission it is to save souls, convert the lost, and govern his church in such a way that  it resembles, as best as possible, the city on a hill, the light of the world whose radiance  cannot be hid under a bushel-basket.

In terms of raw statistics, the Catholic Church shrank under the late Pope. Catholics  comprised 18 percent of the world's population in 1978, the year Karol Wojtyla assumed the  Chair of St Peter. At his death Catholics comprised 17 percent.

It'd be foolish, of course, to let such numbers stand alone as leading Catholic indicators,  but in terms of the quality of world Catholicism the evidence, while not as quantifiable, is  no less apparent or tangible. If one is looking for the fruits of the Wojtylian pontificate,  several studies of the modern church paint a representative picture: Goodbye, Good Men: How  Liberals Brought Corruption into the Catholic Church, Sacrilege: Sexual Abuse in the Catholic  Church, Amchurch Comes Out: The U.S. Bishops, Pedophile Scandals and the Homosexual Agenda,  The Rite of Sodomy: Homosexuality and the Roman Catholic Church, Our Fathers: The Secret Life  of the Catholic Church in an Age of Scandal, Vows of Silence: The Abuse of Power in the Papacy  of John Paul II, and the pioneering work of Dr. Richard Sipe and Roman Catholic Faithful.  These sources approach their subject matter from very varied ideological backgrounds, but they  all paint a very bleak, but well-documented, picture of the prior pontificate.

Though Catholics and others are loathe to admit it of an otherwise beloved Pope, John Paul II  oversaw a church which deteriorated in both its inner and outer life. His callous indifference  toward the victims of priestly sexual abuse in refusing to meet personally with a single one  of them, and his stubborn refusal to compel the resignation from office of any of the bishops  who aided, abetted, and covered-up the abuse, are testamentary to his utter failure: not as a  Catholic or a theologian, but as a Pope.

And this is precisely why he should not be canonized. For in the Catholic (and popular)  understanding, canonization is not simply a technical decree indicating one's everlasting  abode in Paradise; it is, in addition, the Church's solemn endorsement of a Christian's heroic  virtue. The question the Catholic Church must ask herself is: Was John Paul II a model of  "heroic" papal virtue?

Contrary to leftist media reportage, the late Pope was not an authoritarian despot, bent on  enforcing Catholic orthodoxy on an unwilling church. Quite the contrary: theological liberals  and dissenters flourished in all of the Church's structures, from lay politics and Catholic  universities, to the ranks of priests and bishops. Not a single pro-abortion Catholic  politician has been excommunicated from the church; only a handful of openly heretical priests  were asked to stop teaching theology, but were otherwise permitted to exercise their priestly  ministry unhindered. The Church in Austria openly dissents from orthodox Catholicism with  papal impunity. Fr. Richard McBrien, Sr. Joan Chittiser, Roger Cardinal Mahoney of Los  Angeles, Hans Kung, Charles Curran, Notre Dame University, dissenters galore: the overwhelming  majority of prominent far-leftist, theologically modernist Catholic organizations, speakers,  and theologians are Catholics in good standing with their church, and are frequently given an  official platform at church-sponsored institutions and events. To give just two more examples,  several Catholic parishes and universities flaunt themselves as "gay-friendly" in a directory  published by the Conference of Catholic Lesbians. These speakers and institutions are in just  as good standing with the Church as so-called "orthodox" Catholic pundits and writers.

After John Paul II, the Catholic Church is virtually indistinguishable from the Anglican  Communion. Everyone has their seat at the table, liberal and conservative, high church and  low. The "official" teaching of the Church may lean toward religious conservatism, but this is  just one option out of many which a loyal Catholic may avail himself of and remain in good  standing with his Church.

The late Pope's governance of his church was laissez-faire, he personally adhering to  conservative Catholic orthodoxy but not wishing to impose such on Catholic clergy or  institutions. Ironically, the Papacy has been rather critical of governments who take such  approaches to their economies; should it be the model for a church which regards itself as the  one true religion?

The canonization of Pope John Paul II is an issue which concerns not only Catholics, but all  traditionalist conservatives. For better or for worse (depending on one's religious outlook),  the Catholic Church is the largest religious institution on the planet, and historically  regarded as a fairly conservative one. The Washington Times recently named Pope Benedict the  de facto leader of world conservatism. Just as conservatives do not wish to see their  foundational principles redefined by the nomination and election of conservatives-in-name- only, so the canonization of the late Pope would represent (among other things) his church's  influential imprimatur on a model of Christian pastorship that has eroded the foundational  conservative principles of one of the world's oldest and most venerable conservative  institutions.

As noted earlier, the Papacy is the third-rail of orthodox Catholic discourse. The respect  Catholics have for the Papal institution renders the living or recent claimants of that seat  virtually impervious to criticism, as if such critique automatically rendered one implacably  uncharitable or schismatic. When civil society regains its conservative bearings, history will  not be kind to what any unbiased observer must regard as the gross pastoral negligence of the  21st century's first Pope; if Catholics want to come out of the present cultural quagmire with  their intellectual integrity intact, they must fearlessly shed the light of truth on that  Pontiff's pastorship, and be sure to end up on the right side of history's verdict.

© Eric Giunta
http://www.renewamerica.com/columns/giunta/090814

I think we should refrain from allegations(no matter the credibility of the sources) of how much the pope knew or was involved, lest we start accusing him of being a devient as well.

We can criticse his direct and public actions like Assissi but IMO this goes too far and is of NO benefit for us Catholics.

And I say this as one who agrees that he was a horrible pope, perhaps the worst next to Paul VI.

Let's just say a prayer for him instead.  :pray:
criticizing  assisi goes to far??????????
um
ASSISI WENT TOO FAR!!
NO JPii THE SMALL SHOULD NOT BE CANONIZED
SIP SIP
and that not even the half of it
(08-14-2009, 10:01 PM)didishroom Wrote: [ -> ]We can criticse his direct and public actions like Assissi but IMO this goes too far and is of NO benefit for us Catholics.

(08-14-2009, 10:04 PM)devotedknuckles Wrote: [ -> ]criticizing  assisi goes to far??????????

I agree with didishroom.
(08-14-2009, 10:01 PM)didishroom Wrote: [ -> ]I think we should refrain from allegations(no matter the credibility of the sources) of how much the pope knew or was involved, lest we start accusing him of being a devient as well.

Well, you're presenting a false dichotomy.  No one thinks Cardinal Law was a deviant, but they think he covered things up.  It doesn't have to be either or.  You may be correct that we should refrain from allegations, but the reasoning is flawed.

The Neo-Catholics for years have denied and made excuses about JP2's knowledge about sexual abuse, liturgical abuse, etc.  I don't buy it.  I may not believe he knew about incident X, but I certainly believe he knew there were severe abuses of all kinds and did nothing about them.

You know, it would be great if there were an advocatus diaboli to bring this up at his cause, but conveniently there isn't.  Really the only reason to bring this stuff up is precisely what the author states: it goes to the question of his being canonized.  There is a huge lobby for JP2 "the Great" so why shouldn't people point out why he may have been not so great?

I wonder though, how much of his papacy would actually be analyzed for his cause.  I mean from what I understand, sainthood is granted not neccessarily through the works of one's function, but ones holiness.  JPII was certainly in my opinion a weak pope with many lapses of judgement, but he was a holy man, I don't think many can hold something against him, this is just my opinion.  I think it will be a while still before he is canonized and will be after most of the JPII fans are gone as well.
Publicly kissing the Koran alone is grounds for automatic dismissal at a chance for sainthood, not too mention turning a blind eye to all the Father Mcfeeley's out there in my book. :mad:
(08-14-2009, 10:16 PM)AntoniusMaximus Wrote: [ -> ]I wonder though, how much of his papacy would actually be analyzed for his cause.  I mean from what I understand, sainthood is granted not neccessarily through the works of one's function, but ones holiness.  JPII was certainly in my opinion a weak pope with many lapses of judgement, but he was a holy man, I don't think many can hold something against him, this is just my opinion.  I think it will be a while still before he is canonized and will be after most of the JPII fans are gone as well.

Popes St. Pius V and St. Pius X both had their papacies reckoned in their causes, AFAIK.
Quote:There is a huge lobby for JP2 "the Great" so why shouldn't people point out why he may have been not so great?
But what's the point? The Church is nor has she ever been a democracy. It's been pretty much established that canonizations are infallible(with or without "devil's advocate"). If John Paul is made a saint than we know he's in heaven and praying for us.


It does not mean things like Assissi were justifed. Unfortunately people will use his status as saint to justify it.  That's seems like a good enough reason to protest, no?

Yes but also no. Here's why...

I don't like bringing up former forum members but Luigi was a perfect example of how people can take things from some of the best of saints and twist things to satisfy his own agenda. Feminists make St. Joan Darc their patron....homosexuals make St. Sebastian theirs....some use St. Theresa Benedicta of the Cross as a reason NOT to evangelize Jews...

TIA is a perfect example of what happens why you criticise the pope too much. One of their latest updates was a picture of John Paul II distributing Communion in the hand. Why is this news? How is this an update? Can't you just write one or two articles explaining why this practice is no good and move on? But they don't. Instead they go even farther and have disgusting articles accusing Benedict XVI of implicitly approving sex change operations and even a whole book dedicated to exposing Paul VI as an active homosexual! Why?! Yes, if the pope commits a public scandal it must be addressed. I get that. But why all this expose and rumors and interviews and 'he said' and 'she said'? This is why we should try and refrain from this outcry over his canonization. It leads to 'murmuring.' I've been there. Done that. I'm tired of "National Enquirer Catholicism" and I'm only 21. God help me if I'm 60 and I'm still listening to how John Paul kissed the Qur'an!

If they didn't really care about any rules he'd be canonized already. But look at year, four years later and not even a beatification.
well said alaric. WELL SAID>
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