In this – the year of Our Lord two-thousand and eighteen – given that the Faith that comes from the Apostles has been clearly defined over the course of many centuries by the venerable councils of the Church and her faithful Roman Pontiffs, it takes precious few words to transmit and apply sure Christian doctrine to the particular circumstances of the present day.
If, however, one harbors a deep seated disdain for sacred Tradition (from the Latin tradere – to transmit) and is thus intent on supplanting the true Faith with an new religion comprised of novelties of one’s own making, then many words will be necessary in order to deceive the faithful, lest they readily come to recognize the presence of an imposter.
And so it is with the Bergoglian Trilogy: Evangelii Gaudium, Amoris Laetitia, and the installment made public today, Gaudete et Exsultate, which together weigh-in at a burdensome 130,000 words plus.
Having examined each document at length, it is perfectly clear that of these three “Apostolic Exhortations” (so-called), Amoris Laetitia is the centerpiece and crown.
And though Amoris Laetitia arrived chronologically after Evangelii Gaudium, the text of the former was all but written first; the latter having been crafted with the specific intent of paving its way.
As for Gaudete et Exsultate (which, as a service to readers, I endured in full so you won’t have to) also finds its true purpose in Amoris Laetitia; namely, to expedite its acceptance and implementation throughout the Universal Church.
With its true aim defined, here I will offer readers an overview of part three of the Bergoglian Trilogy. This is a lengthy post, but hey… it’s only roughly 10% as lengthy as the document in question.
As with every diabolical initiative, Gaudete et Exsultate contains any number of true, and even laudable, statements. The most notable can be found in articles 159-163 of the text, which deals with the reality of the Devil as a real, personal figure. It also cites Sacred Scripture in speaking of “how the unguarded tongue, set on fire by hell, sets all things ablaze” (cf. Jas 3:6).
This portion of the text will likely dominate neo-conservative headlines; especially given the latest Scalfari interview scandal.
For our purposes, and in light of the warnings given in Sacred Scripture, we will focus on what matters most; namely, the not-too “little leaven” (aka poison) that is laced throughout the text of Gaudete et Exsultate.
If one should attempt to identify any particular part of the document as the “punchline,” a strong case can be made for the section subtitled, “Discernment,” which offers:
How can we know if something comes from the Holy Spirit or if it stems from the spirit of the world or the spirit of the devil? The only way is through discernment, which calls for something more than intelligence or common sense. It is a gift which we must implore. If we ask with confidence that the Holy Spirit grant us this gift, and then seek to develop it through prayer, reflection, reading and good counsel, then surely we will grow in this spiritual endowment. (Gaudete et Exsultate,166)
This is all the more important when some novelty presents itself in our lives. Then we have to decide whether it is new wine brought by God or an illusion created by the spirit of this world or the spirit of the devil. At other times, the opposite can happen, when the forces of evil induce us not to change, to leave things as they are, to opt for a rigid resistance to change. Yet that would be to block the working of the Spirit. (Gaudete et Exsultate,168)
Upon reading these articles, two things immediately came to mind: Firstly, this is precisely the question every one of us should be asking about Amoris Laetitia, which is obviously what the author of both texts has in mind.
Secondly, I made a note in the margins, The voice of Holy Mother Church???, fully expecting that Francis would ignore this most useful means of discernment at our disposal, but alas he did not:
Certainly, spiritual discernment does not exclude existential, psychological, sociological or moral insights drawn from the human sciences. At the same time, it transcends them. Nor are the Church’s sound norms sufficient. We should always remember that discernment is a grace. (Gaudete et Exsultate, 171)
So there you have it, folks; the punchline:
If you happen to be struggling to accept Amoris Laetitia and its novelties, the reason is simple; it is because you lack the special “grace” necessary to recognize it as a gift of the Holy Ghost! After all, “personal discernment” takes precedence over the immutable practices and doctrines of the Holy Catholic Church, as the latter is insufficient.
Now, a word of caution – do not be fooled by what appears in the text two articles later:
Naturally, this attitude of listening entails obedience to the Gospel as the ultimate standard, but also to the Magisterium that guards it, as we seek to find in the treasury of the Church whatever is most fruitful for the “today” of salvation. (Gaudete et Exsultate, 173)
Bear well in mind that Francis considers his own heresy to be “authentic magisterium;” namely, the inglorious overturning of the bi-millennial practice of the Church and the clear words of Our Lord in Sacred Scripture! And this in pursuit of what is allegedly most fruitful for today. So much for guarding the ultimate standard.
If the true purpose of Gaudete et Exsultate is not already perfectly plain (namely, to expedite the acceptance and implementation of Amoris Laetitia throughout the Universal Church), what follows immediately should remove all doubt:
It is not a matter of applying rules or repeating what was done in the past, since the same solutions are not valid in all circumstances and what was useful in one context may not prove so in another. The discernment of spirits liberates us from rigidity, which has no place before the perennial “today” of the risen Lord. The Spirit alone can penetrate what is obscure and hidden in every situation, and grasp its every nuance, so that the newness of the Gospel can emerge in another light. (ibid.)
Ah, yes, newness.
Just as one may have expected, the “God of surprises” (a favorite Bergoglian nom du plume) made an appearance rather early in the text:
When somebody has an answer for every question, it is a sign that they are not on the right road. They may well be false prophets, who use religion for their own purposes, to promote their own psychological or intellectual theories. God infinitely transcends us; he is full of surprises. (Gaudete et Exsultate, 41)
The aforementioned is found in Chapter Two of the text; the entirety of which constitutes yet another frontal attack against “traditionalists” (aka Catholics).
In this, Francis offers nothing especially new; he simply repeats the same insults that he has been hurling at faithful Catholics from the earliest days of his “so-called pontificate” to quote dear Fr. Gruner yet again. (Yes, I am going to continue repeating this often; at least until such time as those posing as the caretakers of Fr. Gruner’s legacy cease pretending that he considered Francis anything other than an anti-pope.)
For instance, Francis bemoans those who “judge others based on their ability to understand the complexity of certain doctrines” (article 37); with the suggestion clearly being that Catholic doctrine is both difficult to understand (which it is not) and is ultimately useless in guiding one’s actions.
Incidentally, I have to say that I know of exactly no one who judges others on this criterion; i.e., this is yet another fake Bergoglian boogeyman meant to discredit the entirely valid resistance he is facing.
He went on to say, quoting his favorite authority, himself (specifically one of his own Santa Marta homilies):
A healthy and humble use of reason in order to reflect on the theological and moral teaching of the Gospel is one thing. It is another to reduce Jesus’ teaching to a cold and harsh logic that seeks to dominate everything. (ibid.)
Translation: It is harsh to treat the words of Our Lord as Divine Law, in particular as it concerns matters of morality. Rather, it is “humble” to “reflect” upon them until they no longer apply to everyone.
Seriously folks… can anyone provide even a shred of evidence that this man is Catholic? (Rhetorical.)
In keeping with his “according to me” theme, Francis repeated the following insults taken from Evangelii Gaudium – a document that is found in no less than eleven footnotes:
Here I would note that in the Church there legitimately coexist different ways of interpreting many aspects of doctrine and Christian life; in their variety, they “help to express more clearly the immense riches of God’s word”. It is true that “for those who long for a monolithic body of doctrine guarded by all and leaving no room for nuance, this might appear as undesirable and leading to confusion.” (Gaudete et Exsultate, 43)
Those who yield to this pelagian or semi-pelagian mindset, even though they speak warmly of God’s grace, “ultimately trust only in their own powers and feel superior to others because they observe certain rules or remain intransigently faithful to a particular Catholic style”. (Gaudete et Exsultate, 49)
This finds expression in a variety of apparently unconnected ways of thinking and acting: an obsession with the law … a punctilious concern for the Church’s liturgy, doctrine and prestige… (Gaudete et Exsultate, 57)
At this point, there can be no question about it: These articles, each one quoting Evangelii Gaudium, are intended to place those who oppose Amoris Laetitia squarely in the Bergoglian crosshairs, painting them not only as rigid, but as unholy.
As I stated at the opening, Evangelii Guadium was never meant to be anything more than an attempt to make straight the paths for Amoris Laetitia – a text that was essentially written, arguably, even before Benedict the Abdicator fled for fear of the wolves.
In the next chapter of Gaudete et Exsultate (Chapter Three), Francis reflects on the Beatitudes, and one in particular stands out in light of the invectives contained in Chapter Two (cited above).
Jesus calls us blessed when people “utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account” (Mt 5:11).
It occurs to me that it is in this way alone that Jorge Mario Bergoglio has managed to bless authentic Catholics, albeit inadvertently.
Consistent as ever, Francis once again blatantly misappropriated select quotes, placing them entirely out of context in order to lend Catholic credence to his diabolical ideas.
For instance, he states:
Saint John Paul II warned of the temptation on the part of those in the Church who are more highly educated “to feel somehow superior to other members of the faithful”. (Gaudete et Exsultate, 45)
Upon investigating the footnote, however, one discovers that John Paul II was not speaking of persons “highly educated” at all; rather he was writing about:
The possibility of a deeper spiritual formation might lead consecrated persons to feel somehow superior to other members of the faithful… (Pope John Paul II, Vita Consecrata 38)
Another blatant act of misappropriation can be found in the following:
When some of them tell the weak that all things can be accomplished with God’s grace, deep down they tend to give the idea that all things are possible by the human will, as if it were something pure, perfect, all-powerful, to which grace is then added. They fail to realize that “not everyone can do everything”… (Gaudete et Exsultate, 49)
The footnote to this nonsense reads:
Cf. Bonaventure, De sex alis Seraphim, 3, 8: “Non omnes omnia possunt”. The phrase is to be understood along the lines of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1735.
OK, let’s play along, shall we. The Catechism of the Catholic Chruch citation reads:
Imputability and responsibility for an action can be diminished or even nullified by ignorance, inadvertence, duress, fear, habit, inordinate attachments, and other psychological or social factors. (CCC 1735)
Now, let’s connect the dots.
As stated earlier, the true purpose of Gaudete et Exsultate is to promote Amoris Laetitia. With this in mind, one cannot help but think of the latter (AL 302), which also quotes this very same article from the CCC, with the ultimate purpose being to support the claim:
Hence it is can no longer simply be said that all those in any “irregular” situation are living in a state of mortal sin and are deprived of sanctifying grace. More is involved here than mere ignorance of the rule. (AL 301)
The point of Gaudete et Exsultate 49 and its footnote is obvious; namely, to give the utterly false impression that St. Bonaventure, in stating “not everyone can do everything,” was referring to an inability on the part of some to keep the Divine Law – a heresy plainly put forth in Amoris Laetitia!
I will point out just one more instance of misappropriation:
Once we believe that everything depends on human effort as channeled by ecclesial rules and structures, we unconsciously complicate the Gospel and become enslaved to a blueprint that leaves few openings for the working of grace. Saint Thomas Aquinas reminded us that the precepts added to the Gospel by the Church should be imposed with moderation “lest the conduct of the faithful become burdensome”, for then our religion would become a form of servitude. (Gaudete et Exsultate 59)
First of all, no one with any Catholic credibility whatsoever believes that everything depends on human effort as channeled by ecclesial rules and structures; this is another Bergoglian strawman.
More importantly, it must be said that St. Thomas Aquinas, in the reference cited in the footnote (Summa Theologiae I-II, q. 107, art. 4), is not speaking of “precepts added to the Gospel by the Church” at all.
In the article cited, he is answering the question: “Whether the New Law is more burdensome than the Old?” To which, he concludes, the New Law is a lighter burden.
The quote offered in Gaudete et Exsultate as given by St. Thomas, was made in reference to the words of St. Augustine who said that “certain persons make it [religion] a slave’s burden.”
Aquinas is not suggesting that the Precepts of the Church should be “imposed in moderation.” In fact, it is calumny to suggest that he did.
Indeed, the Precepts are nonnegotiable. As we are taught in the Catechism of Pope St. Pius X:
Undoubtedly we are obliged to obey the Church, because Jesus Christ Himself commands us to do so, and because the Precepts of the Church help us to observe the Commandments of God.
Once again, upon connecting the dots it is clear that the intent here is to lead the weak and the naïve to believe that the Commandments of God themselves must be imposed in moderation!
No surprise. After all, isn’t this the central theme of Amoris Laetitia?
Mercifully, I will highlight just one more portion of the text; namely articles 101 and 102.
Our defence of the innocent unborn, for example, needs to be clear, firm and passionate, for at stake is the dignity of a human life, which is always sacred and demands love for each person, regardless of his or her stage of development. (Gaudete et Exsultate 101)
While I fully expect Fr. Frank Pavone and other practitioners of pro-lifism to trip all over themselves applauding this particular sentence, what follows is a perfectly plain endorsement for the “seamless garment” approach to social justice made famous by Cardinal Bernardin.
Equally sacred, however, are the lives of the poor, those already born, the destitute, the abandoned and the underprivileged, the vulnerable infirm and elderly exposed to covert euthanasia, the victims of human trafficking, new forms of slavery, and every form of rejection. (ibid.)
Yes, of course those persons listed (and not listed) are equally as sacred, but Francis does not stop there. He continues:
We often hear it said that, with respect to relativism and the flaws of our present world, the situation of migrants, for example, is a lesser issue. Some Catholics consider it a secondary issue compared to the “grave” bioethical questions. (Gaudete et Exsultate 102)
In other words, one must not place a greater priority on the right of a living human person to be born without first being slaughtered in the womb of a woman who can’t be inconvenienced, than on an immigrant who desires to enter a sovereign nation uninvited.
Will the Fr. Frank Pavones of the world condemn this nonsense?
I doubt it, but we shall see.
More can be said about this latest installment in the Bergoglian Trilogy, and I will likely do so in the days to come, but at this point I believe that I have tortured you quite enough for one day.
The bottom line is clear: In spite of repeating certain true propositions, Gaudete et Exsultate, just like its two counterparts, represents a grave danger to souls.
So too does its author, the heretic Jorge Mario Bergoglio.