Does any one have any thoughts on "liberation theology"?

Here is a quote from Cardinal Ratzinger from 1984 and a link to the rest of the article
christendom-awake.org/pages/ratzinger/liberationtheol.htm

Why is this " liberation theology" a " fundamental threat to the faith of the Church".
If it is a “fundamental threat to the faith of the Church” maybe we ought to find out more about it.
The statement underlined about truth and error is interesting also.

2. An analysis of the phenomenon of liberation theology reveals that it constitutes a fundamental threat to the faith of the Church. At the same time it must be borne in mind that no error could persist unless it contained a grain of truth. Indeed, an error is all the more dangerous, the greater that grain of truth is, for then the temptation it exerts is all the greater.

Furthermore, the error concerned would not have been able to wrench that piece of the truth to its own use if that truth had been adequately lived and witnessed to in its proper place (in the faith of the Church). So, in denouncing error and pointing to dangers in liberation theology, we must always be ready to ask what truth is latent in the error and how it can be given its rightful place, how it can be released from error’s monopoly.

Peace be with you, L

Liberation theology = Jesus saves.

What else could it mean?

Liberation Theology is “dangerous” to the institutional, hierarchical church as it exposes the historical and ongoing relationship between the powers of the Catholic Church on earth and those who hold economic, social and political power over vast populations. This is particularly true in 3rd world countries where Catholic missionaries accompanied the conquering armies, equating the hierarchy of the Church with the political and economic hierarchy, the oppressors. Archbishop Oscar Romero of El Salvador, like many others, was martyred because he dared to take the side of the oppressed against the oppressors, who wantonly killed priests, nuns and anyone else who tried to uphold human dignity and the Gospel.

Here is a quote from Romero that is a good summary explanation of what Liberation Theology is all about, which puts into action the words and teachings of the Gospel.

The face of Christ is among the sacks and baskets of the farmworker; the face of Christ is among those who are tortured and mistreated in the prisons; the face of Christ is dying of hunger in the children who have nothing to eat; the face of Christ is in the poor who ask the church for their voice to be heard. How can the church deny this request when it is Christ who is telling us to speak for him?

Cardinal Ratzinger, like others in positions of authority, saw the movement as a threat to that very authority. The rich and politically powerful saw it (and still see it) as a threat to their positions of power and wealth. It makes them (and the Church hierarchy who side with them) uncomfortable as it points out the great disparity between their lives (as supposed Christians and predominantly Catholics)–lives which exploit the poor, powerless and voiceless in order to add to their own wealth and status–and what Jesus taught is necessary to be his disciple.

Those who put the ideas of Liberation Theology in practice, who call out the “structures of power and privilege”, and give hope and dignity to the “least among us”, are living the Gospel; they are following in the steps of Jesus.

It depends on what kind of liberation theology.

Liberation theology is based on a Marxist model of equality, of communalism, and if you don’t, you are labelled, marginalized, condemned.

I prefer Mother Theresa of Calcutta’s take that the West and East and in between are different worlds, but there is an exchange of sharing, providing, helping, illuminating…without the hatred and labelling.

As I witnessed liberation theology first hand and the great turmoil it caused priests and religious, I am not much inclined in learning about other forms, except that our freedom is really found in the life of Christ.

anyone,

re the document cited. The world, including its political climate, have changed a lot since 1984. Have there been changes/responses made by liberation theology to accommodate criticism by traditionalists, etc?
Incidentally, where does the “anti-love” notion of “companionista” fit into/not fit into that theology if at all?

We are to work for justice for all people through legislation and be a prophetic moral public voice. Living out the Beatitudes, performing spiritual and corporal works of mercy,

But we must always work within the standard of Christ Himself, because the fruits of the Holy Spirit unite people and not divide them.

But yes, I think of John Paul II in ‘Centesimus Annus’, where the State exists to serve the people and not the other way around for an example.

You have encyclicals addressing modern society going back to Pope Leo XIII at the advent of the industrial revolution and workers’ rights. There are many pastoral letters out today to support the worker, for those who must work on Sunday’s, for just wages, all within the frame work of society.

Encyclicals and bishops’ pastoral letters address social justice for today in context of each one’s particular diocese. People just need to be involved Catholics by keeping in tune with their local bishop.

**
Does any one have an explanation of what liberation theology proclaims?
Is there a debate/controversy between traditionalists and liberation theology people?
What is the controversy?
Does any one have any good sites/books to explain all this?
**

Is equality and communalism exclusively a Marxist idea? I always thought that both were parts of Christ’s message.
Labels? Condemmed? It would be easier for a camal to go thru the eye of a needle, then a rich man to enter heaven.
Jesus was for the poor, not the elites. He was the original liberation theologist!

I’d qualify that. He was for the rich too, because he came to save all of us.

He did caution the rich that they would have a harder time getting saved than the poor.

Michael Novak has published on liberation theology and takes the traditional conservative view.

Type his name and “liberation theology” at amazon.com.

I was in an African country that went Marxist. The country finally was out from colonial rule going back hundreds of years.

but instead of rejoicing, the headlines of the new government exclaimed in big, black, bold print: ‘America is the Enemy of the World’.

I went to a seminar run by a Catholic priest who told me ahead of time he was going to talk about America. It showed how we consumed most of the world’s goods. OK.

But what was not shown was how many average Americans share and are concerned about those who have less, and how many serve overseas.

I st udied Paolo Freire’s ‘Pedagogy of the Oppressed’, and implemented it with African women. I had a group that got it all in right perspective. But it got out that the Indians were charging the Africans alot more for a bar of soap, and it caused a small riot at the store…the Indian owner not hurt, but the poor African man selling things on his mat was.

My provencial told me he was anti Capitalistic, that he was closer to the Africans than I because he had brown eyes and his skin darker…me being fair and blue eyes. ( Actually I got along very well with the Africans…‘Amada’…beloved in Portuguese. Anyway, soon after he was removed from office, got so involved in developing food sources for the natives, he stopped saying the Mass…In time before he died, he returned to his faith.

What Liberation Theology does is put all of human development into the human hand devoid of Christ’s grace, and how grace works through nature. I did not like seeing priests incite the natives, or put out ideas of revolution and economic war fare and hating the rich…or blaming all those who have power as the only ones who sin.

What we see happening in America is Neo Marxism and this form of liberation theology being utilized by highly educated middle income American blacks and race relations are now worse than before.

It is this enmity, this on going ‘luta’. I was so affected by it, I could not keep food down and in time my health was really delibilitating and I had to go back home, also in part because of the growing AntiAmerican sentiment there. There were some Mennonites and another lay American from Ohio…I think we were the only Americans in the country then.

I met with a priest I had worked with in NYC 3 years later. He told me the Africans did not like this hard core Marxism. They also did not like the lack of freedom and having to get permission to go from town to town or having these Cuban ‘grannies’ watching what they were doing in their neighborhoods.

Leonard Hoff was the initial composer of Liberation Theology, who was a Franciscan, and later left the priesthood.

KathleenGee
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Re: Does any one have any thoughts on “liberation theology”?
I was in an African country that went Marxist. The country finally was out from colonial rule going back hundreds of years.

but instead of rejoicing, the headlines of the new government exclaimed in big, black, bold print: ‘America is the Enemy of the World’.

I went to a seminar run by a Catholic priest who told me ahead of time he was going to talk about America. It showed how we consumed most of the world’s goods. OK.

But what was not shown was how many average Americans share and are concerned about those who have less, and how many serve overseas.

I st udied Paolo Freire’s ‘Pedagogy of the Oppressed’, and implemented it with African women. I had a group that got it all in right perspective. But it got out that the Indians were charging the Africans alot more for a bar of soap, and it caused a small riot at the store…the Indian owner not hurt, but the poor African man selling things on his mat was.

My provencial told me he was anti Capitalistic, that he was closer to the Africans than I because he had brown eyes and his skin darker…me being fair and blue eyes. ( Actually I got along very well with the Africans…‘Amada’…beloved in Portuguese. Anyway, soon after he was removed from office, got so involved in developing food sources for the natives, he stopped saying the Mass…In time before he died, he returned to his faith.

What Liberation Theology does is put all of human development into the human hand devoid of Christ’s grace, and how grace works through nature. I did not like seeing priests incite the natives, or put out ideas of revolution and economic war fare and hating the rich…or blaming all those who have power as the only ones who sin.

What we see happening in America is Neo Marxism and this form of liberation theology being utilized by highly educated middle income American blacks and race relations are now worse than before.

It is this enmity, this on going ‘luta’. I was so affected by it, I could not keep food down and in time my health was really delibilitating and I had to go back home, also in part because of the growing AntiAmerican sentiment there. There were some Mennonites and another lay American from Ohio…I think we were the only Americans in the country then.

I met with a priest I had worked with in NYC 3 years later. He told me the Africans did not like this hard core Marxism. They also did not like the lack of freedom and having to get permission to go from town to town or having these Cuban ‘grannies’ watching what they were doing in their neighborhoods.

Leonard Hoff was the initial composer of Liberation Theology, who was a Franciscan, and later left the priesthood.
**
Wow! Thank you for taking the time and sharing your experience . The world is full of misguided and dangerous ideologies! May God protect us from these deceptions!L**

Yes,…there was no love.

And my parish also partially sponsored me, the more wealthy contributing to the needs of the poor there. We helped them purchase a tractor so they could provide food for their communities.

When the communists took over, they began confiscating the tractors, equipment, jeeps and worked to stop the priests – the very ones who welcomed them for helping overcome colonialism…set out to persecute them.

I had prayed very much for my pastor/superior that he would not get caught up in all of it. We had a papal nuncio come to our diocese, and it had a very critical spirit…priests fighting among themselves. The sisters told me they were behaving more like lions.

When I was leaving…and i had problems keeping food down, vomiting for 6 months because of personal lingual isolation and this revolutionary theology that literally was making me sick…I came to the meeting when my superior and other priests were there. He gave them a reality check. He told them that at the moment he told the communists he supported them…but once they would do bad, he would let them know, and noted already the insults given them…by former missionary educated Marxists…Samora Machel had gotten his education in a Christian mission.

I came home feeling alot of guilt about being white, by being a capitalist, and coming from America…and I was told this by the provencial who told me he was a communist Christian, I sensing this from the moment I first met him. so it was very painful and this idea of liberation theology literally took hold of my faith and soul, I being in some kind of bondage and theological confusion.

Seven years later, the day the Holy Father John Paul II was shot in Rome, I got down on my knees and finally prayed one devout rosary and in 15 minutes, my soul and understanding of theological faith was totally healed.

So if I were to really respond to liberation theology…I would respond by saying ‘pray the rosary’ and follow your bishop and always try to find two sides of the story, avoiding any partisan politics.

Treat every human being the same, rich or small and try to see them the way the Lord sees them.

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