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Is Francis compos mentis?Written by Christopher A. Ferrara
The quoted phrases are from Francis’s latest rant on this theme (Italian original here). This time, however, the ranting exhibits not only the usual twisting of Sacred Scripture for polemical purposes but also borderline babbling that suggests an impairment of the rational faculty.
First, the twisting of Scripture. According to Francis, when Saul made a burnt offering following his victory over a garrison of the Philistines (cf. 1 Kings 13), the reason God punished him for disobedience was that he “wanted to offer a sacrifice of the best animals…. because ‘it’s always been done that way,’’ whereas “this time, God did not want that.” The point being, evidently, that God had some surprising novelty in mind for the celebration of the victory, to which Saul was blind because of his slavish adherence to the Hebrew ritual.
That reading is utterly false and misleading, presenting precisely the opposite of what Sacred Scripture teaches here. Saul’s disobedience consisted precisely in his not doing what had always been done by arrogating to himself a liturgical function reserved to the priests, violating not only Hebrew tradition but also the explicit command of the prophet Samuel that he wait seven days for Samuel’s arrival so that Samuel, a priest of the old dispensation, could offer the sacrifice. Further, when Saul attempted to defend his disobedience by arguing that “forced by necessity, I offered the sacrifice” because he had to appease the Lord before the Philistines counterattacked, Samuel rebuked him thus: “Thou has done foolishly, and hast not kept the commandments of the Lord thy God, which he commanded thee (1 Kings 13:12-13).” For this and subsequent disobedience God would dethrone Saul.
We can add this flagrant abuse of Scripture to all the others Francis has committed to serve the rhetorical needs of the moment. The most infamous example, of course, would have to be his insistence that when Our Lady held the crucified Body of Our Lord beneath the Cross “surely, with that wounded body lying in her arms, that body that suffered so before dying, inside surely she wanted to say to the Angel: “Liar! I was deceived.” She, too, had no answers.” (“Bugiardo! Io sono stata ingannata.”) That the sinless and immaculate Virgin Mary, the Co-Redemptrix, thought God had lied to her respecting His divine Son’s mission and that she had “no answers” for Christ’s redemptive suffering and death on the Cross may be the most outrageous statement uttered by any Pope in nearly 2,000 years of Church history.
Aside from the usual verse-twisting, the sheer irrationality of the latest outburst at Casa Santa Marta leaves one wondering whether the Pope is in full possession of his faculties, especially given the slurred speech evident in the “I believe in love” video paean to religious indifferentism launched two weeks ago. Francis argues confusedly that “Christians who cling to what has always been done” are guilty of “the sin of divination” because they “have a heart closed to the newness of the Spirit… the voice of the Spirit,
a tiresome rehash of arguments that have repeatedly been offered by the idolaters of change since the time of the Abbé de Lamennais [whose proto-Modernist works and philosophical system were denounced by Pope Gregory XVI].”
The way things are going, Francisdid not attempt to sanctify this Apostolic Church with the teaching of apostolic tradition, but by profane treachery permitted its purity to be polluted.” Francis’s ludicrous, blatantly seditious “Synod on the Family” would be Exhibit A in that regard.
This is no reason for despair, however, but rather for confidence in the promises of Christ. In the end, our divinely protected Church will right herself just as she has after every other crisis in her long history, even if the present one is arguably the worst of all.
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Christopher A. Ferrara: President and lead counsel for the American Catholic Lawyers Inc., Mr. Ferrara has been at the forefront of the legal defense of pro-lifers for the better part of a quarter century. Having served with the legal team for high profile victims of the culture of death such as Terri Schiavo, he has long since distinguished him a premier civil rights Catholic lawyer. Mr. Ferrara has been a lead columnist for The Remnant since 2000 and has authored several books published by The Remnant Press, including the bestseller The Great Façade. Together with his children and wife, Wendy, he lives in Richmond, Virginia.