Vatican-China: “clandestine” Bishop Wei Fu: «we are joyful about the agreement»

The historic agreement between China and the Vatican has been greeted with joy by the Chinese Catholics, by the clandestine Bishops, and by the missionaries who really know the situation. Let us listen to what they have to say.

 

Every action, every speech, and every decision of Pope Francis receives by now its preventive dose of malicious criticism by the notorious pseudo-Catholic bloggers who like to act, according to the situation, as theologians, diplomats, historians, or experts of international politics. This was the case with the historic agreement between the Holy See and the Chinese government of last September 22. But they overlooked its enthusiastic welcoming by the “clandestine” Chinese Catholics and the fact that this agreement had been longed for by John Paul II and Benedict XVI.

Someone talked about a “betrayal” of the clandestine Church, not recognised by the government, without checking, though, the judgment of the Catholic clandestines themselves. «If one criticises Pope Francis for having surrendered to the Chinese government on the appointment of Chinese bishops, he can do so only because he does not have faith and therefore cannot really know what the Church really is. And I would let such a person say whatever he wants: he can say whatever he likes; anyway, he does not know what he is talking about». This was...

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The Galileo case: the philosopher of science Feyerabend defended the position of the Church

Galileo, Bellarmine, and the Church. The most ancient version of the "Letter to Benedetto Castelli" by Galilei was found in London. We exploit this occasion to publish a reflection by philosopher Feyerabend, whose quotation meant the censorship of Benedict XVI by some professors of the Sapienza University in 2008. Paul Feyerabend was professor at the main European universities as well as at the California University. His approach, as can be deduced, is absolutely secular.

 

By Paul Feyerabend* * Philosopher of science

 

The Church at the time of Galileo not only kept closer to reason as defined then and, in part, even now: it also considered the ethical and social consequences of Galileo’s views. Its indictment of Galileo was rational and only opportunism and a lack of perspective can demand a revision. […]

The trial of Galileo was one of many trials. It had no special features except perhaps that Galileo was treated rather mildly, despite his lies and attempts at deception. But a small clique of intellectuals aided by scandal-hungry writers succeeded in blowing it up to enormous dimensions so that what was basically an altercation between an expert and an institution defending a wider view of things now looks almost like a battle between heaven and hell. The so-called trial of Galileo consisted of two separate proceedings, or trials. The first occurred in 1616. The Copernican doctrine...

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“Jesus did not want to found a new religion”: how to answer?

«Jesus had no intention of founding a new religion». This is the strongest statement emerged in the debate started by the review Jesus with some scholars, and it was pronounced by Mauro Pesce, full Professor of History of Christianity and the author of controversial theses expounded in his book with Corrado Augias: Inchiesta su Gesù [Inquest of Jesus].

The attempt is to reduce Jesus to a pius Jew who only wanted to go into Judaism more in depth, by indicating Christianity only as a betrayal of his real intentions (and usually accusing Saint Paul of having been the founder of a new religion). Anthropologist Adriana Destro, for example,  added: «Jesus did not want to form a separate group; he does not found a new Church. The reasons for his death, therefore, have nothing to do with theological questions, but with social and political questions». Pesce agrees and adds in the his above-mentioned book: «Jesus did not even want to change a dot, if we want to use an if we want to use a more recent term, of the Torah, that is of the religious law contained in the first five books of the Bible». But these theses are wrong.

From a certain point of view, it is true: Jesus never talks about a new religion to found. And, indeed, “Christianity” is nothing more that group of devout Jews who, meeting...

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Ratzingerian Ouellet debunks Viganò’s charges: «false and blasphemous»

The Viganò case and Ouellet. The former nuncio’s charges against Pope Francis have been defined as “false” and “blasphemous” by an ex close collaborator of Benedict XVI and by a pupil of John Paul II, Card. Marc Ouellet. His’ are well-documented replies, unlike the accusations by Viganò, after days of study in the Vatican’s archives.

 

And after the Viganò dossier, few hours ago the Ouellet dossier came out, which, based on a deep knowledge of the archival documents, debunks the charges and the reconstructions by the former apostolic nuncio. But who is Marc Ouellet? A loyalist to John Paul II and, above-all, to Benedict XVI. Back when no-one would have imagined, it was even anti-Bergoglian Vaticanist Sandro Magister to witness it, as he reported that Ouellet and Ratzinger’s «friendship is long-standing, strengthened by common battles». In a  second article, dated 2013, Magister defined Ouellet «a cardinal of solid Ratzingerian background and rich in talents».

Effectively, after having been created cardinal in 2003 by John Paul II, appointed by him as prefect of the Congregation for Bishops, Preisdent of the Pontifical Commission for Latin America, Metropolitan Archbishop of Québec, and Primate of Canada, Ouellet participated in the...

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Card. Caffarra: «Let who is against the Pope go away; he will lose himself»

Card. Caffarra, the dubia, and Pope Francis. One year after the death of the Archbishop of Bologna, many are remembering him. Amongst them, there are also the critics of the Pope, who exalted Card. Caffarra after the perplexities manifested about Amoris Laetitia. But three years before he passed on, Father Carlo gave a teaching on which many avoided reflecting.

 

Created Cardinal by Benedict XVI in 2006, Carlo Caffarra was always a lucid witness, an international point of reference of moral theology. «A great master», as defined yesterday by Msgr. Massimo Camisasca, Bishop of Reggio Emilia-Guastalla, during a commemorative Mass celebrated by Matteo Zuppi, Archbishop of Bologna. «His task first of all as theologian and then as Bishop was to feed himself continuously with God’s truth to transmit it to the people entrusted to him. He was able to reconcile continuously reason with the reasons of faith, he showed us paths that reason can follow and those that only faith can illuminate. I am happy to have known Father Carlo, to have been able to live with him many moments of my maturity and of the beginning of my old age, to have been a witness of his infinite love the Church and for the Pope».

The ending of Bishop Camisasca’s speech was not casual, since for many the name Caffarra is reduced to one of the Cardinals of the...

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Gay suicides? Nothing to do with homophobia; relationships are the cause

Gay discrimination leads to suicide”, “They commit suicide because they are victims of bullying”, “when they are hindered by their family, homosexuals risk committing suicide”. These and other ones are the usual statements by pro-gay psychiatrist Vittorio Lingiardi, Professor at the Sapienza University in Rome. All balderdash, at least according to an Australian study, saying that the causes prevalently derive from the higher incidence of relationship problems amongst homosexuals.

Dr. Delaney Skerrett, from the Australian Institute for Suicide Research and Prevention at the Griffith University, led a group of researchers studying suicides, so as to discover that the main cause of suicide amongstlesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex” (LGBTI) individuals is the stress deriving from their partners. «We tend to assume that the psychological distress LGBTI people are often going through is due to family rejection. But it seems that’s not so much the case. The conflict seems to be largely related to relationship problems, with partners» – declared the scientist.

The causes of suicide and depression inside the homosexual community are unfortunately more complex than gay activists admit. They «Pro-homosexual activists have long given a single explanation for the high rates of physical and mental health problems among those who engage in homosexual...

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Nobel Prize W.D. Phillips and that God present «in my life and in the Universe»

The US physicist and Nobel Prize William D. Phillips is called “the man who freezed atoms”, as he developed some important methods to cool atoms with laser light, to slow down their movement and be able to study them. He is Professor of Physics at the Maryland University and member of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). He never hid his faith: he is a Methodist Christian with a great esteem for the Catholic Church, as well as, besides, a member of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences.

«I do not thing there is anything strange» – he explained few days ago. «Many scientists I know believe in God. I do not think there is what is called the “conflict between science and religion”; maybe, at the most, some people are devoted to creating conflicts».

He refers to his “new atheist” colleagues, already singled out by his fellow mathematician Amir Aczel, from the University of Massachusetts: they «compromised the integrity of science» to try to demonstrate that «the idea of the necessity of God must be necessarily wrong» (A. Aczel, Perché la scienza non nega Dio, Raffaele Cortina Editore 2015, p. 14). Aczel decided to enter into the debate precisely in response to Dawkins, Harris, and Hitchens’s “scientific atheism”, in vogue until few years ago. Nobel Prize Phillips, on the contrary, has always declared...

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Sexual abuses, report on priests in Pennsylvania: what the media are hiding

The topic of paedophilia inside the Catholic Church has once again become the main focus on attention, and it is important that Pope Francis has talked about “crimes” in the letter diffused yesterday, because the sexual abuse by these corrupt men is not only a sin, but a tragic betrayal of their vocation. Few days ago the report realised by the Grandy jury of Pennsylvania, which describes the abuse occurred from 1947 until today in six dioceses of the American State.

The news went around the world, but there are two details to add, which do not diminish at all the seriousness of these actions, but they permit to contextualise things better. Few have talked about it, not even the “Catho-traditionalist” media, which are exploiting this issue to spread hatred towards today’s Pontiff and his collaborators. Until yesterday, they were talking about a secularist plot; today they are «ready to ask for the resignations even only on the basis of “it is not possible that he did not know”, when some clergymen considered close to the Pontiff in charge end up in the crosshairs (only in theirs)» – wrote Andrea Tornielli. A battle not in favour of the victims but «pursued by self-styled Catholic...

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Luther and antisemitism: the floor to a Lutheran historian

Few months ago, the Italian translation of the work Luther’s Jews by German historian Thomas Kaufmann was published by the publishing house Claudiana (219 pagine, € 19,50), with a foreward by Daniele Garrone. The text makes for a remarkable shortcoming of the Italian books panorama, by describing the relationship between the father of the Reformation, religion, and the Jewish people in an exhaustive and complete way.

The thesis emerging from the study and exhaustively and convincingly argued may be summed up in an extremely simple and concise way: in the first writings Luther appears benevolent towards Jews, with the hope of their conversion; in the last writings, instead, Luther appears extremely aggressive and polemic, even with peaks of vulgarity and explicit invitations to violence, until going so far as to suggest governors persecute and expel the Jews.

The first Luther emerges with extreme clarity from the text Jesus Christ was a born a Jew (1523), written few years after the beginning of the Reformation (conventionally dated 1517). In the text Luther shows admiration and almost a sort of envy towards the Jewish people, the first interlocutor and recipient of the alliance with God, and towards the Hebrew language which contains and codifies this alliance. He made himself the spokesman for an unconditional religious tolerance towards the Jews, attitude which makes him positively stand out in his Century and in the preceeding ones. Luther’s hope is that his Reformation...

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Aldo Brandirali: from Marx to Christ… passing through Father Giussani

The Meeting for Friendship amongst Peoples, organised by Communion and Liberation, is about to start. Whatever one thinks, everybody should take interesti in the writings by Father Luigi Giussani. His reasonable way to explain faith does not leave indifferent, and his’ is a method of evangelisation that will never be anachronistic. It is so that he converted thousands of people, including Muslims, Orthodox Christians, Protestant theologians, agnostics, scientists, philosophers. But also several Marxists: one example is Aldo Brandirali.

Born in 1941, Brandirali was one of the points of reference for the 1968 Milanese activists, one of the exponents of the Italian Communist Party in 1945, and leader of the Maoist Union of Italian Communists (Marxists-Leninists), founder of the weekly magazine Servire il popolo [Serving the people] and the review FalceMartello [Hammer and Sickle]. At least until 1975, when, after he met Father Giussani and his 15-thousand-member party was disbanded, his path of personal conversion started.

«I had always been an influential interpreter» of the 1968 revolution, as Brandirali has recently written Brandirali. «If today I still had the opinions I had at that time, now I could only recount delusions and failures, and this would not be interesting. In fifty years I have walked,...

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Peter Singer, guru of secular bioethics: «Disabled? Ok to rape, they do not understand it

There are not few theorists of a secular bioethics, which denies a moral law inherent in man. The loss of absolutes is the first consequence, and the second is relativism, one of whose variant is called utilitarianism. The theorist thereof has been, for years, Peter Singer, Professor at the Princeton University, vegan, and anti-specist, having recently come back again to raise a debate.

In Italy, the most successful experiment of secular bioethics is that of the Consulta di Bioetica [Commission of Bioethics], directed by Maurizio Mori. In 2012, it appeared on all the front pages of the newspapers, as two members of the board, Alberto Giubilini and Francesca Minerva, overly justified infanticide. The international indignation notwithstanding, Mori himself supported the thesis of his researchers.

But the real leader of international secular bioethics is, as already said, Peter Singer. Even he is the author of similar theses: «Neither the newborn nor a fish are persons; killing these being is not morally as negative as killing a person». «Even though the baby will be able to have a life...

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The Pope rewrites the Lord’s Prayer? The modification on “temptation” dates back to 2008

«The “Our Father” is not the one of Pope Benedict XVI. God does not lead us into temptation!! Benedict XVI was fooled by the Devil». We read this on November 2007 on traditionalist websites, when Jorge Mario Bergoglio was a “simple” Argentinian Archbishop.

But, at that time, these people were an isolated voice, lacking – contrary to nowadays – the mediatic support of the religious right wind (or, better, “divine” right wing, as Camillo Langone calls it). The latter is accusing Francis of being willing to change the Pater Noster, but they ignore that the form “do not abandon us in temptation” was introduced in 2008.

It is the task of theologians – not ours – to evaluate the matter of the opportuneness or not of a better translation of the prayer taught by Jesus in the Gospels. Simply, we want to show how self-proclaimed Ratzingerians whose existential mission is the war against the Pontiff in charge – on any topic – find themselves fight even against Benedict XVI. «The Our Father will be modified and edulcorated» – has recently denounced, for example, journalist Marco Tosatti, leader of the “anti-Bergoglian resistance”. «With this effrontery, one dares to tamper with a two-thousand-year-old...

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«The return of God? Inevitable: man has a call to transcendence in himself»

by Claudio Risé* *Jungian psychotherapist from La Verità, 08/05/18

On religiousness today as well as on who has a say or not on religious symbols and rituals, there is great confusion in Italy, also owing to misinformation. The usual stereotype, repeated more times by the big media, is that religion and its symbols do not interest almost anyone anymore. We are explained, until we get bored, that the developed world deals with other things: money, fun, status… in sum, the things that matter. The rest is bigotry about to disappear.

That is the thesis of “secularisation”. The world has by now learnt to to without God and goes on, more or less serenely, on its own. This hypothesis has been by now proposed for 230 years, when the French Revolution had the holy statues hacked down to substitute them with that of the goddess Reason, and is now refuted, as we shall see, by internationally known and accepted data. So much so that the official philosopher of postmodernity, Jürgen Habermas, asked to talk about post-secularisation today […].

The human being needs something else, beside money and more or less shiny consumes. In particular, he needs to love and to be loved by Someone else who gives him something back from a higher and eternal dimension and whom all the world’s cultures call God, in different forms. Tirelessly looking for God and his strength is the providential aspect of the human psyche which has...

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«Creationists and Darwinian Atheists: the same mistakes»

  Mariano Bizzarri* *director of Systems Biology Group Lab - Sapienza University of Rome  

It is so paradoxical that the Catholic Church – in her documents and in the speeches of many of her exponents, including many Pontiffs – has always supported the compatibility between the Catholic faith and the theory of evolution, while Protestants fiercely fought evolutionism, albeit some variations depending on their multiple denominations.

In fact, the Protestant ideology – in conflicting ways – declares, on the one hand, the right to an autonomous and free interpretation of Scriptures by each faithful and, on the other, requires a strictly literal interpretation. It is exactly the literal interpretation of the Bible that led the Anglo-Saxon Protestant world into a double cul-de-sac. The literal interpretation, for the believers of one of the many Protestant denominations, means conforming their thought with a story of creation similar to a fairy tale. For non-believers, instead, the adherence to the same interpretation has fatally inspired vulgar ironies and criticism because it is so easy to show how the Biblical story of creation is scientifically untenable.

Biblical Creationism has spread among the Protestant and Evangelical demoniations, especially in the United States of America. The Catholic world, instead, is not involved in this diatribe because...

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Ratline: the Catholic church did not help the Nazi criminals

The city of Genoa (Italy) had an important role after the dissolution of the Nazi regime. From Genoa, in fact, dozens of Jews and refugees boarded to looke for a new life. However, also many Nazi criminals did; for this reason, we also talk also about ratline.

Like for every historical episode, accusations against the Catholic Church cannot fail to be levelled. In this case, she is accused of facilitating the escape also of Nazi criminals through the so-called ratline, which connected Europe with South America. This controversy has recently arisen again when Italian writer Carlo Martigli rhetorically asked Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone clarifications about all this. In particular, about Cardinal Giuseppe Siri, suspected to have supported Croatian priest Carlo Dragutin Petranovic, former army chaplain of the Ustashe militia, suspected, in his turn, to have distributed fake passports to Nazis.

Ratline: historical inquiry by Pier Luigi Guiducci

Maybe Martigli does not know it, but a historical inquiry has already been written by Pier Luigi Guiducci, Professor of History of the Church at Pontifical Lateran University. In his book Oltre la leggenda nera (Mursia 2015) – which ...

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