Is this still a problem in the Church?

“Today, however, it seems necessary to reflect on the whole of the Church’s moral teaching, with the precise goal of recalling certain fundamental truths of Catholic doctrine which, in the present circumstances, risk being distorted or denied. In fact, a new situation has come about within the Christian community itself, which has experienced the spread of numerous doubts and objections of a human and psychological, social and cultural, religious and even properly theological nature, with regard to the Church’s moral teachings. It is no longer a matter of limited and occasional dissent, but of an overall and systematic calling into question of traditional moral doctrine, on the basis of certain anthropological and ethical presuppositions.”

“At the root of these presuppositions is the more or less obvious influence of currents of thought which end by detaching human freedom from its essential and constitutive relationship to truth. Thus the traditional doctrine regarding the natural law, and the universality and the permanent validity of its precepts, is rejected; certain of the Church’s moral teachings are found simply unacceptable; and the Magisterium itself is considered capable of intervening in matters of morality only in order to ‘exhort consciences’ and to ‘propose values’, in the light of which each individual will independently make his or her decisions and life choices.”

“In particular, note should be taken of the lack of harmony between the traditional response of the Church and certain theological positions, encountered even in Seminaries and in Faculties of Theology, with regard to questions of the greatest importance for the Church and for the life of faith of Christians, as well as for the life of society itself.” Pope John Paul II, Veritatis Splendor, n. 4.

That seems pretty true alright. :frowning: JPII knew what he was talking about.

I agree that many Priest and Bishops utterly FAIL in teaching the doctrine of faith as proscribed by the Holy See… I think it is their “Protest” ant against things they either don’t agree with or do not have the Moral courage to face the flock over… my thinking anyway…

The teachings of the Church form a conherent and integrated whole, where altering one aspect will severely distort the rest.

For example, the Church changes the teaching on homosexuality to accept it and to approve of same sex unions.
Therefore, the teaching on marriage will change, as the true purpose of marriage (begetting children chastely) will be tossed again. Next to go will be the prohibition on using artificial contraception, as the ‘good of the spouses’ will be the purpose of marriage.

Then goes the teaching on the infallibility of the Church, the authority and witness of Scripture, the revelevance of the Fathers etc…

A formula to become Anglicanised.

I don’t think you have to worry about that teaching…:slight_smile:

Unless the Holy Spirit falls asleep, we are ok with that one :smiley:

But modernists believe that a simple change won’t hurt, but in fact, it would bring the whole house down.

In reading Veritatis Splendor

“In particular, note should be taken of the lack of harmony between the traditional response of the Church and certain theological positions, encountered even in Seminaries and in Faculties of Theology, with regard to questions of the greatest importance for the Church and for the life of faith of Christians, as well as for the life of society itself.” Pope John Paul II, Veritatis Splendor, n. 4.

I was particularly struck by the statement, made by the Pontiff in an encyclical, that even in Seminaries and Faculties of Theology many persons hold and teach position on ethics which are contrary to the traditional response of the Church. This is still true today. There are errors on ethics being held and taught, not merely by individual Catholics who have gone astray, but by priests and theologians. And this problem is not rare or sporadic, but rather widespread and continual.

The holy spirit hates gays.

I really think the Vatican needs to pass judgment on those Priest or instructors that are preaching Heresies. In the past people were ex-communicated and or de-frocked. I do not understand why our Bishops are so bankrupt on some of these moral issues. If they actually held instructors to high standards we might eventually weed out those with moral leanings outside of the church in positions of authority and trust.

It’s a complicated problem. The extent to which heresies are accepted within the Church has reached perhaps an unprecedented level. If all persons who adhere to any heresy were excommunicated (ferendae sententiae), the size of the Church would be reduced to a small fraction of its present membership. Most Catholics adhere to some or all of the following heresies:

that contraception is not always immoral,
that direct abortion should be permitted in some cases,
that women should be priests and bishops,
that virginity and celibacy are better than marriage,
that Scripture contains errors on matters other than faith and morals,
that homosexual acts are not always gravely immoral,
that gay marriage should be permitted,
and many other serious doctrinal errors.

In fact, formal heresy does carry the penalty of excommunication (latae sententiae). But those priests and theologians who commit heresy, though excommunicated in the eyes of God, continue in their roles as if they were not in a state of formal heresy.

The kinds of errors that are found in seminaries and theology faculties are often more insidious. A complex theological argument is used, terms are redefined, magisterial documents are interpreted in a disingenuous manner. The result is to turn away from the traditional approach of the Church to questions on faith and morals. But it is much harder to identify and correct this type of problem.

I agree there is a problem with some of the leaders within the Church, but we have to look at the average Catholic as well. If we, as lay Catholics, truly put Christ & the Church first in our lives, there would be no room for these leaders who dissent from the teachings of the Church. For these leaders to survive, there has to be a lot of Catholics who support their view. But I also agree the Church has gotten lackadaisical with taking punitive action against anyone within the Church. There has to be consequences for persistent & obstinate persons who publicly go against the teachings of the Church.

I thought celebacy and virginity were better than marriage…?

You are right of course, I misspoke, or mistyped.

I meant to say that they deny celibacy and virginity are better than marriage.

Good point. I sometimes think that some priests and theologians are merely telling their audience what they want to hear.

And there are very many Catholics who do not adhere to the teaching of the Church on many points of faith and morals. They have been taught by secular society to exalt their own opinion, they have been taught that there is no absolute truth. Society is their teacher, instead of the Church.

It’s absolutely true, Ron.

Study and a degree in theology does not guarantee that the holder of the degree understands traditional morality or is able to apply it to specific situations…

:whistle:

My points exactly… I think that moral courage is lacking.

Again the reason this is happening is that a stand is not made. If the Vatican would take the worst offenders and make an example, and announce it from the mountain tops, other errant Priest and the flock would likely start listening. We might lose some, but did we really have them anyway?

Pope Benedict XVI did say at one point in time, as a personal opinion prior to becoming Pope, that perhaps the Church should become smaller and holier.

I’m not convinced that if the Holy See was more authoritative, that the problem would be solved, or improve. There have been cases where a priest departed from Church teaching, was corrected by the local Bishop, and he left the Church and took most of his flock with him. I don’t think there is an easy short term solution.

That’s definitely not what we want to happen.

So if the local Priest wants to change Church Doctrine, make it modern or what ever the Church can do nothing while he corrupts the remaining faithful. I think they need to nip this in the bud… My opinion only…:shrug:

What I meant was that we don’t want whole congregations leaving and following a cult-like priest.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.