In light of yet another terrorist attack on innocent persons at the hands of faithful Muslims, this time in Brussels, the infamous “Regensburg Address” given by Pope Benedict XVI in 2006 is getting renewed attention.
Fr. Alexander Lucie-Smith, for instance, penned a piece for Catholic Herald entitled:
Benedict XVI grasped the nature of the new age of terrorism. Why did nobody listen?
Citing a key portion of Benedict’s address, which includes the following, Fr. Lucie-Smith says, “Regensburg is the only way. We need dialogue based on sound reasoning rather than wishful thinking.”
Spreading the faith through violence is something unreasonable. Violence is incompatible with the nature of God and the nature of the soul …
The decisive statement in this argument against violent conversion is this: not to act in accordance with reason is contrary to God’s nature.
A few observations are in order.
First, can we please dispatch once and for all with the foolish notion that Benedict XVI – either in seeking his wisdom in the present moment or by virtue of revisiting his magisterium – represents a return to stability in the midst of these tempestuous times?
His recently published interview clearly demonstrates that he, like Francis, is a card carrying modernist who has made no small contribution to the current ecclesial crisis.
(This is the same interview, by the way, that is still being falsely hailed by some less-than-reliable sources as a condemnation of the “evolution of dogma” and a call to once more proclaim extra ecclesiam nulla salus, when in fact it is the exact opposite.)
As for the Regensburg Address itself, while the central point is unassailable (namely, that faith and reason are perfectly compatible inasmuch as God is logos, and logos is both reason and word), the conclusion is predictably deficient.
In Benedict’s words:
‘Not to act reasonably, not to act with logos, is contrary to the nature of God’, said Manuel II, according to his Christian understanding of God, in response to his Persian interlocutor. It is to this great logos, to this breadth of reason, that we invite our partners in the dialogue of cultures.
Now, in fairness to Pope Benedict, he was speaking at Regensburg about the “task of the university,” and only indirectly about the Islamic menace.
Fr. Lucie-Smith’s takeaway from the address relative to Muslim terrorists (if you’ll pardon the redundancy), however, isn’t the least bit out of sync with the witness of Benedict’s collaborative peace-building efforts with other religions. (Remember, this is the pope who gave us Assisi III.)
To quote Fr. Lucie-Smith once more:
“Regensburg is the only way. We need dialogue based on sound reasoning rather than wishful thinking.”
Seriously? The last thing we need is more dialogue!
Our churchmen have been dialoguing with anyone willing to endure their feminized pastoral pandering for more than 50 years now, and the only thing we have to show for it is a global infestation of religious indifferentism reaching all the way to the Chair of Peter.
Fr. Lucie-Smith does, however, come rather close to breaking free of the dialogical disease when he concludes:
Indeed, the God of the Islamists does command irrationality and idolatry, and events in Brussels are the proof of this. This is what we have to confront, and it can only be done by challenging their religious beliefs and showing them to be false, and indeed anti-religious, in that they contradict the true nature of religion, for faith to be faith must always go hand and hand with reason.
Bravo for at least being willing to state the obvious; Islam is false!
That said, Fr. Lucie-Smith doesn’t seem to realize that he essentially contradicts himself when he then goes on to speak of “the true nature of religion.”
Hasn’t the false religion known as Islam demonstrated beyond any doubt just how ridiculous it is to speak of “religion” in such broad terms?
You see, both Fr. Lucie-Smith and Pope Benedict assume that one can reasonably speak of “religion” and “faith” in a generically positive way (e.g., “spreading the faith through violence is something unreasonable” … “Islam is anti-religious”), when in truth, only one religion is true by nature and therefore entirely compatible with reason, and that is the Holy Catholic faith.
Now, don’t get me wrong, there is a place for entering into reasoned dialogue with false religionists in the course of carrying out the Church’s mission. Indeed, such is truly necessary.
Reason is a God-given source of knowledge by which one can come to recognize that there is one God, along with certain of His attributes, but reason has its limitations.
Fallen man is inclined to evil, and evil impairs the intellect and therefore one’s ability to reason. Man is prone, in other words, to error.
Perhaps that is why Our Blessed Lord did not establish a debating Church, but rather a Church that is both Mater et Magister (Mother and Teacher); a Church divinely endowed with the authority to speak in His name as the bulwark of truth.
As every good mother and teacher certainly knows, it is absolutely necessary, not only to lead their disciples (those who learn) to truth by way of reasoned dialogue, but also to proclaim the truth firmly and clearly, all of it, lovingly counseling their charges to embrace said truth for their own good, while also condemning the errors and falsehoods that threaten to lead them astray.
From the time of the Council on forward, our churchmen have utterly relinquished the greater part of their missionary duty; seeking nothing more than to dialogue, and even worse, acting as if the “wisdom” of heathens and heretics is something to be coveted.
The post-conciliar popes in particular have been pleased to behave as if the Church is searching for truth right alongside those who dwell in the darkness of a false religion; equipped with little more than the gift of reason that belongs to every man.
They seem to have lost sight of what the Church truly is – the voice of Christ the King in the world, His Kingdom here present, and the custodian of Divine revelation in its fullness in the person of her Founder and Head, who is Truth incarnate.
All of this said, when it comes to those Islamists among us today who are so imbued with evil as to slaughter innocent human beings in service to their false god, we are speaking of men who have lost the ability to reason; they are therefore repulsed by the truth.
As such, our churchmen can do little to curtail their diabolical appetite beyond begging God to enlighten them by a miracle of grace.
Where a difference can perhaps be made is with future generations of would-be Muslim terrorists – not all, but certainly some – if only our churchmen, the pope chief among them, would take up the mission that was given to the Church by Christ once more, proclaiming His Kingship, and calling all men to embrace everything whatsoever that He commanded that they may have life everlasting.
If we’re perfectly honest, and without making any excuses for those who do evil, we must recognize that the murderous Muslims who wreaked havoc on Brussels are men who came of age at a time when the Mother and Teacher charged by Almighty God with the task of Christianizing the world, in her humanity, has all but abandoned her post and eschewed her obligations.
In their formative years, in other words, today’s terrorists were effectively orphaned, and with their hearts and minds left unfilled by the Divine truths that our churchmen were unwilling to preach, the resulting void was all the more easily filled by the tenets of a false religion authored by he who prowls about the world seeking the ruin of souls.
No, the answer to Islamic terrorism isn’t Regensburg and yet more godforsaken dialogue; it’s the return of Rome to the Holy Catholic faith in all its life-giving fullness.
I was born to pagan parents but converted. It is hard to “dialogue” because we aren’t even speaking the same language. They think religion is about feelings and fitting into society. They don’t want to convert because they don’t understand that religion is about objective truth, not just “feeling happy”. And many “neoCatholics” try to give emotional reasons to be Catholic. The question really is about whether Catholicism is true or false, not whether it makes you feel good or procures you social advantage. Reality doesn’t give a whiff what we feel.
I’m worried about next year. If my suspicions are correct something terrible will happen. And most of the people who will die are on the path to hell.
The first step for the Vatican is to get rid of the Vatican Bank. When this prime source of corruption is gone, the Holy Spirit can return. Only then will good things be possible for the Church.
From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven has suffered violence, and the violent take it by force.
The following quote is from:
“The great sorrow is that the nominal leaders of the true Church are no longer capable of speaking up against evil. The Belgian bishops, for example, expressed “dismay” at the carnage, and the head honcho of the Catholic Church in England, Cardinal Vincent Nichols, expressed not only “dismay” but also “shock.” Now think about this. Even if a person was thoroughly ignorant of the history of Islam from the 7th to the 20th centuries; ignorant, that is, of the murder of countless Catholics committed by Mohammed’s followers, ignorant of the torture and rape of countless Catholic boys, men, girls and women, ignorant of the countless Catholics enslaved and worked to death, even if these prelates somehow got to the age of 50 or 60 without learning one scrap of truth from history, surely they’ve seen a newspaper or gaped at the boob tube in the past twenty years or so. “
Our Lady of Ransom, ora pro nobis!
A HYMN WRITTEN IN 1664
My song is love unknown,
My Saviour’s love to me;
Love to the loveless shown,
That they might lovely be.
O who am I,
That for my sake
My Lord should take
Frail flesh, and die?
He came from His blest throne
Salvation to bestow;
But men made strange, and none
The longed-for Christ would know:
But oh, my Friend,
My Friend indeed,
Who at my need
His life did spend.
Sometimes they strew His way,
And His sweet praises sing;
Resounding all the day
Hosannas to their King:
Is all their breath,
And for His death
They thirst and cry.
They rise and needs will have
My dear Lord made away;
A murderer they save,
The Prince of life they slay.
Yet cheerful He
To suffering goes,
That He His foes
From thence might free.
In life, no house, no home
My Lord on earth might have;
In death, no friendly tomb,
But what a stranger gave.
What may I say?
Heav’n was His home;
But mine the tomb
Wherein He lay.
Here might I stay and sing,
No story so divine;
Never was love, dear King,
Never was grief like Thine.
This is my Friend,
In whose sweet praise
I all my days
Could gladly spend.
Needed: A new St. Pius V, a new Lepanto, a new Trent.
All the more reason we should ban Muslims from immigrating to Western countries.
What? You mean kissing all over muslim women’s feet won’t stop the terrorists?
I’ll see your jihad and raise you one crusade.
That’s quite unrealistic, Rushintuit, and also imprudent. In itself money is neither good nor bad, but is a tool, a currency, i.e. a means of exchange. Of course an inordinate love of, and obsession for money is evil, but so are many other “inordinate loves”, such as, for example, for alcohol or for food.
The reality is that in exchange for the Papal States, we have now the Vatican Bank. Would you, if possible, prefer the return of the Papal States?
As the Vatican Hill was colonized by opportunistic Roman noble families over the centuries, it is no surprise that greedy and unscrupulous individuals would seek to control and manage the Vatican Banks. Such is the lot of humankind. Here we must pray for saintly, but skillful forensic accountants.
And if property or wealth in general were an evil in itself, why for countless years did the Popes demand from schismatic Anglicans the return of the monasteries treacherously confiscated by King Henry VIII and his brood of vipers as a condition for negotiating any early reconciliation of the Anglicans with the Catholic Church.
We would like to include the only solution that heaven has revealed is the one given to us by the Blessed Mother at Fatima. As at Lepanto,She will be the only one who can help us. God has decided that He wants the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary through the obedience of the pope in union with the bishops of the world . This will only be accomplished when Russia is consecrated to the Immaculate Heart. No other man decided way will ever
replace what God has decided. If they were not obedient to God, and walked around Jericho the man decided number of times, the walls would not have fallen. Moses was not allowed to enter the Promised Land because God told him to speak to the rock, and Moses instead tapped it twice. What God has willed is THE ONLY SOLUTION!!! Man need not come up with any more ideas because God has already provided for the defeat of the evil when our beautiful Blessed Mother Mary triumphs through the required obedience. Case closed because She promised that it would happen, that Russia will be consecrated by the pope in union with the bishops. Though it will be late, we can know for sure that it will happen. Praise God for the hope given us in His Mercy and Love.
Excellent summary of what is needed —- obedience to Our Lady of Fatima’s request.
I appreciate the other biblical examples you gave showing how it’s God’s way alone that will give the desired result.
I am sorry. I was trying to say:
I always learn something from your posts, Alarico.
Money is neither good nor bad, but it’s mathematically impossible to succeed in the current debt based system unless you are a banker or do the will of bankers. Also, the Catholic Church opposes socialism because it advocates the state control of the means of production and its materialism. Many conservative Catholics need to understand the principles that the Church opposes. A welfare state by itself is not evil–this sounds shocking to a US republican but it’s true. Read up articles on charity and socialism on the Catholic Encyclopedia.
This is an interesting topic. I agree with you regarding your sense of the banks, but I would seek more ‘science’ in connection with that opinion, and that science seems already to have been well developed by a branch of economics called Austrian Economics, which harshly criticizes state operated Central Banks, especially those which have the authority to issue Fiat Currency for the primary purpose of being the “bank of last resort” with the power to “bail out” the big banks when they fail. It’s a rigged, idolatrous system which does not play in the same level playing field as the individual and “Main Street” businesses. It is idolatrous insofar as it is totally man-made and unnatural. It’s this system that generates what you call the debt based system, and that, in my opinion, is the father of socialism.
The Age-old Wisdom of the Church, and its metaphysicians, ought to turn its attention to this idolatrous system.
Diverse weights are an abomination before the Lord: a deceitful balance is not good.