Bishop Sanborn responds to the "rupture theology" article
(06-17-2009, 11:23 PM)newschoolman Wrote: I think it compliments the following with respect to the binding charater of a certain conscience -- even when honestly erroneous:

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A Certain conscience must always be obeyed when it commands or forbids.  This holds for both the right and the erroneous conscience. (Cf. Jone, Moral Theology, TAN, p. 40)

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Everyone is obliged to follow his conscience whether it commands or forbids some action, not only when it is true but also when it is in invincible error. (Cf. Prummer, Handbook of Moral Theology, Roman Catholic Books, p. 60)

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Hence a certain conscience must be obeyed, not only when it is correct, but even when it is invincibly erroneous.  Conscience is the only guide a man has for the performance of concrete actions here and now.  But an invincibly erroneous conscience cannot by distinguished from a correct conscience.  Therefore if one were not obliged to follow a certain but invincibly erroneous conscience, one would not be obliged to follow a certain and correct conscience.  But one is obliged to follow a certain and correct conscience.  Therefore one is also obliged to follow a certain but invincibly erroneous conscience. 
The basic reason for this conclusion is that the will depends on the intellect to present the good to it.  The will act is good if it tends to the good presented by the intellect, bad if it tends to what the intellect judges evil.  Invincible error in the intellect does not change the goodness or badness of the will-act, in which morality essentially consists. (Cf. Fagothey, Right and Reason: Ethics in Theory and Practice, TAN, p. 214) 

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An invincibly erroneous conscience must be obeyed.
If a man is not obliged to follow an invincibly erroneous conscience; then he is not obliged to follow a correct conscience. Precisely because the error is invincible a man has no means of detecting it. Hence he cannot distinguish between a correct conscience and an invincibly erroneous conscience. Both are the same to him. Hence if he must obey in one case, he must obey in the other.
The same conclusion follows from a consideration of the will act.  The will act becomes good or bad inasmuch as it embraces an object, not as the object is in itself, but as the object is presented by the intellect as good or bad.  (Higgins, Man as Man, The Science and Art of Ethics, 1958, TAN Reprint 1992, p. 135)

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To act against one's honestly erroneous conscience is to sin. (Archbishop Lefebvre, Religious Liberty Questioned, Angelus Press, p. 10)

"Moral Theology, McHugh and Callan, 1929, p. 314" Wrote:"For one is obliged to follow an erroneous conscience, and, if the error is invincible, one is excused from sin. Example: A Catholic, poorly instructed in religion and thrown in with non-Catholic and anti-Catholic associates, might become really persuaded, and without sinning against faith itself, that it was his duty to become a Protestant."

This, of course. does not mean that all Catholics have a right to join a Protestant sect and that they have a right to not be disturbed in doing so.

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Re: Bishop Sanborn responds to the "rupture theology" article - by lamentabili sane - 06-22-2009, 12:54 PM



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