Name That Cleric!
#21
Full Text:

" In the Beginning…A Catholic Understanding of the Story of Creation and the Fall [William B. Erdmans Publishing Co., 1995].

In the story that we are considering [Ch. 3 of Genesis], still a further characteristic of sin is described. Sin is not spoken of in general as an abstract possibility but as a deed, as the sin of a particular person, Adam, who stands at the origin of humankind and with whom the history of sin begins. The account tells us that sin begets sin, and that therefore all the sins of history are interlinked. Theology refers to this state of affairs by the certainly misleading and imprecise term ‘original sin’. What does this mean? Nothing seems to us today to be stranger or, indeed, more absurd than to insist upon original sin, since, according to our way of thinking, guilt can only be something very personal, and since God does not run a concentration camp, in which one’s relative are imprisoned because he is a liberating God of love, who calls each one by name. What does original sin mean, then, when we interpret it correctly?

Finding an answer to this requires nothing less than trying to understand the human person better. It must once again be stressed that no human being is closed in upon himself or herself and that no one can live of or for himself or herself alone. We receive our life not only at the moment of birth but every day from without – from others who are not ourselves but who nonetheless somehow pertain to us. Human beings have their selves not only in themselves but also outside of themselves: they live in those whom they love and in those who love them and to whom they are ‘present.’ Human beings are relational, and they possess their lives – themselves – only by way of relationship. I alone am not myself, but only in and with you am I myself. To be truly a human being means to be related in love, to be of and for. But sin means the damaging or the destruction of relationality. Sin is a rejection of relationality because it wants to make the human being a god. Sin is loss of relationship, disturbance of relationship, and therefore it is not restricted to the individual. When I destroy a relationship, then this event – sin – touches the other person involved in the relationship. Consequently sin is always an offense that touches others, that alters the world and damages it. To the extent that this is true, when the network of human relationships is damaged from the very beginning, then every human being enters into a world that is marked by relational damage. At the very moment that a person begins human existence, which is a good, he or she is confronted by a sin-damaged world. Each of us enters into a situation in which relationality has been hurt. Consequently each person is, from the very start, damaged in relationships and does not engage in them as he or she ought. Sin pursues the human being, and he or she capitulates to it [pp. 71-73]."

http://www.christianorder.com/features/f...nus_1.html

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#22
Modified to correct some grammatical mistakes.

Issue No. 1:

The logical problem is that the quote that you cite on your blog, and even the remainder of the quote which is cited in the article you reference is two paragraphs in an entire book. What's on page 74?

While I detest the style and the re-definition of terms, there is an Augustinian methodology in the set-up here. By that I mean, as St. Augustine tends to do in his writing, he asks questions and in a very Socratic style, makes one to question some point, then eventually he provides for the hole he has created through more questions. There is something of an upset or some friction and then a resolution which draw all together. That is a very old and often successful teaching style.

The problem with the quote is that there is no resolution at all. In yours you quote where Cardinal Ratzinger was questioning the idea of Original Sin as a difficult concept since we are not personally guilty for it. That is just the first question, there is no resolution or answer given at all in your blog post. Then if you read the extended quote the author does begin a consideration of sin not as some action for which I am personally punished, but instead as a harm to a relational bond. That's perfectly orthodox way of approaching sin. That's where it leaves off. There is no resolution, no talk about Orginal Sin in this context, so there is some part of the whole discussion missing. Thus, you're leaving out a key element of the Augustinian style, the resolution. Without this resolution the whole quote is out of context.

Seeing as I am certain you simply stole the quote because it was opportune and have not read the book in question (and not been charitable and just toward the author, by omitting the whole quote), I imagine asking for more context is simply going to get me silence or attacks.

Or perhaps you could be a gentleman, and instead either retract the accusation against the Pope, or provide the context where he actually denies Original Sin is imputed on all of us.


Issue No. 2:

In the writing you say that you would not let such a man even baptize you child. You've written a great deal, but apparently you missed basic sacramental theology in all of that. Even if a man certainly denied the existence of Orginal Sin, he can validly baptize, provided he intends to do what the Church does. He does not have to intend to remit Original Sin; nor does he even have to be Catholic, Christian, or a cleric. He merely needs to intend to effect the sacramental action in the person, not just do some kind of ritualistic washing. In your effort to be striking, bold and dynamic, you've denied a fundamental point of theology. Fortunately it's not something which makes a material heresy, or we could presume malice.


Issue No. 3:
Additionally, there's a bit of a problem with the Canon Law cited and the quote cited from McKenzie. Both presume an action or words which are certainly material heresy in themselves. Not words that taken out of context can be interpreted as heresy.

When such actions or words are made clear and are material heresy, we presume that the author meant them as heresy. In the external forum (the Church's public judgment) they are considered suspect or heretical until the contrary is shown. In fact, that almost exactly fits with what Quis wrote.

What is written, if we had all of it, might actually be a poor choice at improvisation on a point of doctrine, but able to be orthodox. If possibly orthodox, then it is not the crime of heresy and there is no presumption of either malice or that the author intended it as heresy. Only when it is clearly heretical is it criminal, sinful, and able to be presumed as maliciously intentioned.

Furthermore, McKenzie is clear that we are speaking of juridical presumption, not the permission of anyone and everyone to presume malice. Law demands that the suspect heresy be proven orthodox, but Charity demands that since we are not juridical authority we exercise Charity and reserve judgment on the person's intention.

We can, however, judge that it would be inadvisable to buy and give our friends copies of this book.
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#23
Good grief. All Crdl. Ratzinger is saying here is that we moderns, whose minds are saturated in personalistic categories, have a difficult time with the notion of Original Sin. He then goes on to show, in a way that is quite masterful, how insight into the dogma can be had using these very categories; the sense laid out is complementary and in no way exclusive of the traditional ontological understanding of Original Sin.

Honestly, you have to be looking pretty hard for heresy to construe it from the given passages.
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#24
(09-02-2009, 11:27 PM)Marc Wrote: Honestly, you have to be looking pretty hard for heresy to construe it from the given passages.
Of course he is. He's a sede desperately trying to find grounds for his heterodox belief! :)
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#25
(09-02-2009, 10:28 PM)SoCalLocal Wrote:
(09-02-2009, 10:01 PM)Br. Pio-Francis T.O.S.F. Wrote: Further Quis,
  The fact that this quote may be interpreted as a denial of original sin is a problem: "Nothing seems to us today to be stranger or, indeed, more absurd than to insist upon original sin, since, according to our way of thinking, guilt can only be something very personal, and since God does not run a concentration camp."  This is bad.

  Remember, this man is a theologian, who served under a German Cardinal.  He has two doctorates in sacred theology, he is very very intelligent.  The works of an astute mind such as this must not write texts such as this. 

  Heresy is not only a denial of a revealed truth but a doubt or denial.  A theologian or any Catholic for that matter, cannot even raise doubts about the dogmas of the faith.   

 
That sentence makes perfect sense, actually. The key word is "seems."

Looking from the outside, for Catholics to get marital advice - binding, in many cases - from an 80 year old celibate virgin seems also absurd. 

I agree with SoCalLocal.  Then-Cardinal Ratzinger is merely pointing out that, in our society, the idea of original sin SEEMS absurd or strange.  He is making an observation that most people today reject the idea of original sin.  And furthermore ... he's right!

"Brother" Pio, you are like many a sede I've run across ... you seem to be unable to understand the real meaning behind relatively simple statements, and instead you pull them out of context and ask rehetorically whether or not this particular pontiff isn't contradicting the Church.  Why don't you take a reading comprehension course instead of trolling for readers for your blog?
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#26
(09-01-2009, 08:09 PM)SinfullyLate Wrote:
(09-01-2009, 07:26 PM)Rosarium Wrote:
(09-01-2009, 07:18 PM)Br. Pio-Francis T.O.S.F. Wrote: There is nothing in this post which would be objectional to you, I am sure, if you did not know my public position concerning the crisis.
Attempting to spread FUD is always objectionable to me.

From now on I will ignore every post made by "Br." Pio-Francis. I wonder if he realises that his name sake, Saint Padre Pio, not only was known to have attended a NO mass at times, but also openly acknowledged Pope John XXIII and Pope Paul VI as legitimate Popes? I don't see how these Popes can be legitimate, but not Pope Benedict XVI!

Shame on you for taking Padre Pio's name. I feel quite insulted with that. My religious name is Sister Faustina Pio. I have such a close relationship with Pio thats its scary! Ill have you know that man was so obedient to the church, he would do nothing to insult Her but humbly followed her instruction whether he believed it was wrong or not. He was such a humble, humble man who loved the church and pope with all his soul. And you take his name? Your having an identity crisis.
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#27
(09-02-2009, 09:29 PM)Br. Pio-Francis T.O.S.F. Wrote:
(09-02-2009, 02:36 PM)QuisUtDeus Wrote:
(09-02-2009, 12:27 AM)Walty Wrote: I am in no way a sede and, indeed, I abhore that disease, but he does have a point with this passage.  What is then Cardinal Ratzinger talking about?  Surely we are reeading this out of context or incorrectly.

Well, one way to look at it is the way I did.  Read it as written in the context of Catholic theology and then it can be reconciled.  Note that I am not assuming what he actually meant - neither heterodox or orthodox, I'm reading it as written.   So the words in and of themselves can be understood in an orthodox manner.

There are two questions here, actually: 1) Is what is written orthodox? A: It can be.  2) Did he mean it in an orthodox manner? A: There is no way to tell without questioning him, which also means we can't assume he meant it in a heterodox manner.

There was a reason the Holy Office was called the Inquisition - it asked questions, it asked what people meant before condemning them as heretics.  Sometimes what might seem to be heresy can be misunderstanding, imprudence, etc.

Actually Quis, I did not state in my post that this was in fact heresy. 

Nor did I accuse you of it.  However, on your blog you link to Christian Order, stating "Please read the rest of his work on this subject below link:"  where the same text is cited and the comment is:

"Christian Order" Wrote:First of all, I would suggest that we might search 2,000 years of history and never find another statement so clearly and profoundly heretical made by a member of the Church in as high a position as that occupied by Cardinal Ratzinger.

Quote:But as far as your answer regarding the judgment of heresy, heretics and the Holy Office (unless I misunderstand you), if one were to judge the actions of heretics in that manner, you would not be able to say that a certain Lutheran or Calvinist was or was not a heretic. This may help, it was an article to Mr. Ferrara by Fr. Cekada.  Remember, it is illicit to judge the internal conscience of an individual, but one can and must judge externals.  For example if a man knocks at your door, and you notice in the peep hole he holds a revolver in his hand, but he has a nice smile, you still may judge that it would not be a good idea to open the door! :

"No. Canon 2200.1 lays down the general principle: “When an external violation of the law occurs, in the external forum the existence of malice (dolus) is presumed until the contrary is proved.”

      The reason such presumptions exist in the law, says the canonist Michels, is that “in the external forum one acts based on the way things ordinarily happen and externally appear. And indeed ordinarily, each person of sound mind customarily acts reasonably and freely, fully knowing and deliberately willing whatever he really does.” (De Delictis, 1:134)

      (B) Heresy and Burden of Proof: In the case of heresy, though, wouldn’t canon law at least require the prosecutor to prove that Mr. Ferrara’s client was “pertinacious” or “obstinate” in the alleged heresy?

      No again. “The very commission of any act which signifies heresy, e.g., the statement of some doctrine contrary or contradictory to a revealed and defined dogma, gives sufficient ground for juridical presumption of heretical depravity… [E]xcusing circumstances have to be proved in the external forum, and the burden of proof is on the person whose action has given rise to the imputation of heresy. In the absence of such proof, all such excuses are presumed not to exist.” (McKenzie, The Delict of Heresy, 35.)"

These quotes from this article:

http://www.traditionalmass.org/articles/article.php?id=66&catname=14

Those are great quotes, however the problem is that the proper authority to offer a judgment of heresy by Canon Law is the bishop.  You can't have it both ways - you can't cite Canon Law saying that malice is presumed and then ignore the parts where it defines the proper authority to make that judgment. 

The quote above states: "gives sufficient ground for juridical presumption of heretical depravity" - note it limits it to juridical presumption, not personal presumption.

But, to use your metaphor, we have the right to presume the guy with the gun is up to no good and not open the door.  We don't have the right to try and execute him for attempted murder.  Likewise, we have the right (and duty) to shut our minds to heretical statements, but we don't have the right to try and convict people for heresy publicly and in the same manner that a legitimate authority has.  And that goes for whomever speaks a heresy whether they be Pope or Pauper.  The juridical authority resides with the bishops, not with us.
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#28
(09-02-2009, 10:01 PM)Br. Pio-Francis T.O.S.F. Wrote: Further Quis,
  The fact that this quote may be interpreted as a denial of original sin is a problem: "Nothing seems to us today to be stranger or, indeed, more absurd than to insist upon original sin, since, according to our way of thinking, guilt can only be something very personal, and since God does not run a concentration camp."  This is bad.

  Remember, this man is a theologian, who served under a German Cardinal.  He has two doctorates in sacred theology, he is very very intelligent.  The works of an astute mind such as this must not write texts such as this. 

  Heresy is not only a denial of a revealed truth but a doubt or denial.  A theologian or any Catholic for that matter, cannot even raise doubts about the dogmas of the faith.   

His statement reads "seems to us today" which implies that it is a modern notion, and, in fact, a faulty one.  In other words, I read it as that he is condemning the confusion.  The historical teaching of the Church is that one can be guilty of the sins of the father whether it is Original Sin from Adam or the deicide of the Jews.  Modern people do not think this way, and that is what he is pointing out.

The fact that he has two doctorates in Sacred Theology and is very intelligent should give you pause when you think you see something heretical.  In my mind, if I see something I think might be screwy, I would read it twenty times over because I would have the presumption that I'm missing something in how I'm reading it since he has those degrees, was prefect of the CDF, and I'm a tool with a keyboard.

You should make sure someone really has a gun in his hand before you start shooting through your door...
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#29
(09-02-2009, 10:29 PM)Br. Pio-Francis T.O.S.F. Wrote: Full Text:

" In the Beginning…A Catholic Understanding of the Story of Creation and the Fall [William B. Erdmans Publishing Co., 1995].

In the story that we are considering [Ch. 3 of Genesis], still a further characteristic of sin is described. Sin is not spoken of in general as an abstract possibility but as a deed, as the sin of a particular person, Adam, who stands at the origin of humankind and with whom the history of sin begins. The account tells us that sin begets sin, and that therefore all the sins of history are interlinked. Theology refers to this state of affairs by the certainly misleading and imprecise term ‘original sin’. What does this mean? Nothing seems to us today to be stranger or, indeed, more absurd than to insist upon original sin, since, according to our way of thinking, guilt can only be something very personal, and since God does not run a concentration camp, in which one’s relative are imprisoned because he is a liberating God of love, who calls each one by name. What does original sin mean, then, when we interpret it correctly?

Finding an answer to this requires nothing less than trying to understand the human person better. It must once again be stressed that no human being is closed in upon himself or herself and that no one can live of or for himself or herself alone. We receive our life not only at the moment of birth but every day from without – from others who are not ourselves but who nonetheless somehow pertain to us. Human beings have their selves not only in themselves but also outside of themselves: they live in those whom they love and in those who love them and to whom they are ‘present.’ Human beings are relational, and they possess their lives – themselves – only by way of relationship. I alone am not myself, but only in and with you am I myself. To be truly a human being means to be related in love, to be of and for. But sin means the damaging or the destruction of relationality. Sin is a rejection of relationality because it wants to make the human being a god. Sin is loss of relationship, disturbance of relationship, and therefore it is not restricted to the individual. When I destroy a relationship, then this event – sin – touches the other person involved in the relationship. Consequently sin is always an offense that touches others, that alters the world and damages it. To the extent that this is true, when the network of human relationships is damaged from the very beginning, then every human being enters into a world that is marked by relational damage. At the very moment that a person begins human existence, which is a good, he or she is confronted by a sin-damaged world. Each of us enters into a situation in which relationality has been hurt. Consequently each person is, from the very start, damaged in relationships and does not engage in them as he or she ought. Sin pursues the human being, and he or she capitulates to it [pp. 71-73]."

http://www.christianorder.com/features/f...nus_1.html

I don't know.  I have tried several times to get through this book but I find it troubling.  Does the Holy Father believe in a man named Adam (who has a feast day in the Church) and a woman named Eve who ate from a tree in disobedience to God?

He plainly says he believes in some evolutionary process (for which there is no evidence) and tries to coax an orthodox mystical understanding of Genesis  while never saying whether he does or does not believe that "sin is in the blood" as Bishop Sheen described it.

In the section above, I can't even tell if then Card. Ratzinger distinguishes between sin and guilt and he doesn't even touch on the doctrine of "Fallen nature" and "evil" in the world in all its forms.  Fr. Malachi Martin once described it as a situation in which a Mother is a drunk and the Father a crackhead, the child may come out addicted to crack and alcohol even though it did nothing to merit it.  Evil spreads, from sin, not sin begets sin.  Sin is not a virus, it's caused by a predilection towards sin stemming from our fallen nature. 

At the very least the then-Cardinal's book is less illuminating than it is disconcerting.
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#30
(09-03-2009, 01:27 PM)Gerard Wrote: I don't know.  I have tried several times to get through this book but I find it troubling.  Does the Holy Father believe in a man named Adam (who has a feast day in the Church) and a woman named Eve who ate from a tree in disobedience to God?
Yes, that is a teaching of the Church.

Quote:He plainly says he believes in some evolutionary process (for which there is no evidence) and tries to coax an orthodox mystical understanding of Genesis  while never saying whether he does or does not believe that "sin is in the blood" as Bishop Sheen described it.
Many here believe the same (although I'm not one). It is a non-traditional, yet uncondemned notion.

Quote:At the very least the then-Cardinal's book is less illuminating than it is disconcerting.
Well, then it is proof of God's mercy, that a fallible man can when it counts be infallible.
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