The early reports, to the surprise of no one, are that the “Synod on the Youth” was mostly (rather expensive) window dressing for the next phase in the Bergoglian rewrite of the Catholic Church’s ecclesiological DNA. The real purpose for the whole tedious affair – including all the disco dance parties – was to insert the subroutine Bergoglian dogma of “synodality” into the new programming.
That means, as far as anyone has been able to figure it, the devolution of certain carefully selected powers of ecclesiastical governance from Rome to the national bishops’ conferences.
What’s been talked about as an example is the issue of liturgical translations; but what has been done in that area so far is the creation of different and opposing “interpretations” of the Church’s law on granting permission for the divorced and civilly remarried to receive Holy Communion.
(Vatican Media Photo)
We’ve heard a great deal about “synodality” this week, mostly in the context of reports that the bishops at the Synod are complaining of a bait n’ switch. Apparently, the Francis Cabal has completely given up pretending to follow even the external forms of what they claim to be doing.
So unashamed has the manipulation become that Cardinal Oswald Gracias of Mumbai – a member of the drafting committee and a Bergoglian court favourite from the “peripheries,” simply admitted at the press briefing that the final document would focus a great deal on “synodality” even though this was something the bishops hardly spoke about at all.
“They’re very heavily stressed, discernment and synodality, which really were not very much prominent in the discussions,” Crux reports Gracias saying. “It wasn’t very prominent in the minds of the synod fathers, but it’s come out very strongly,” he admitted.
The original point of these Synods, so we were told, was to offer the pope advice. But now they’re not even pretending this is a Thing anymore. So, what was the point again of getting bishops and kids to come to Rome to talk about a lot of stuff that isn’t now going to be included in a document that is – again, supposedly – a summary of their discussions?
Survey says…It’s PR.
To no one’s surprise, the bishops are now being called upon to vote clause by clause on a document they were not being allowed to read in their own languages – unless they were Italians, of course. It was graciously conceded before the vote that they could have it read to them by translators as they were voting. But they’re voting right now, and Edward Pentin is reporting on site and tweeted a few minutes ago, “Sudden translation problems, too short a time to read the final document in Italian, substantial differences between draft and final document that expand controversial topics…” So, take even that much for what it’s worth.
It was devious manipulation; now it’s the rules
Our friend the highly informed Chris Altieri, formerly of the English Section of Vatican Radio, summarised the expectations …of … well, I guess of everyone who isn’t being paid by some body of the Church… saying the last pair of Synods in the Octobers of 2014 & 2015, accomplished the cabal’s goals using “some pretty heavy-handed manipulation outside the established rules and with some pretty obvious winking at procedural regularity.” But this one is tootling right along, “smooth as butter”. This of course is because what was in 2014 manipulation and procedural irregularity is now the normal operating procedure of the Synod, thanks to Baldisseri the Stealer of Books, and his boss.
And I think this is the pattern that we can now use to understand the functioning of the whole of the New Paradigm FrancisChurch.
Chris writes at the Catholic Herald that the document, mainly written by Cardinal Baldisseri, was a clever bit of papal sleight of hand, I suppose worthy of the Renaissance popes Bergoglio likes to both condemn and emulate, with equal enthusiasm. “As far as any final document on Francis’s watch is concerned…the Synod Fathers would end up saying whatever this Pope will have decided to say they said.” And so, it is working out as we speak.
Bergoglio and the Church of Francis
I thought this pretty much summed up the whole of the Bergoglian Paradigm Shift: what was forbidden on paper and done clandestinely anyway as a matter of course after Vatican II, with the popes and the hierarchy turning a carefully diplomatic blind eye, is now on paper and officially celebrated. All the same corruption, the doctrinal, disciplinary, canonical and procedural catastrophe, but now wrapped in pretty Vatican gift shop packaging and stamped with the Pope’s own official seal of approval.
This is what papal positivism is and does. And the logic is pretty simple; it’s a very straightforward syllogism: if the Faith is created by the popes, the pope can and ought to make or remake it in any way he sees fit. After all, “the Holy Spirit chooses the pope,” at the Conclave, and “the Holy Spirit guides the pope” once elected. The fact that the conclusion is completely contrary to 2000 years of Catholic teaching, being based on two false premises, two erroneous beliefs, seems not to be penetrating the minds of many people. And it is this error that Bergoglio and his gang of thugs have elevated to the status of a new Mark of the Church.
And of course, they’re not bothering to pretend that isn’t what it means. In fact, as people like us are complaining that this has reduced the office of the pope to a kind of Catholic Delphic Oracle, mumbling out whatever he happens to think and demanding it be taken as the will of God, people in his own gang are making even larger claims. We remember the Canadian Fr. Tom Rosica claiming that the reason Francis is so wonderful is that he’s not restricted by silly, old-fashioned things like Scripture or Tradition.
Today a screenshot from the Twitter feed of the Italian section of the Vatican News Service about sums it up: it’s not Jesus Christ we’re taking to the world now; it’s Francis, the New Christ. Giuseppe Nardi writes about the trend among the official Vatican information services and the pope’s chosen mouthpieces (and often enough from Bergoglio himself) of presenting him not as the successor of Peter, representing Christ, but as the successor to Christ Himself, a failed God judged by the modern world as too “rigid” about things like divorce and remarriage. That this is straight-up blasphemy seems not to bother anyone Inside.
Synodality: it probably doesn’t mean what you think
A friend of mine commented drily on Facebook about the bait and switch:
“Speaking for my three Catholic teenagers, I can confidently say that synodality is almost all they talk about with their friends. Well-worn and highlighted copies of Episcopalis Communio are strewn all over the place.
“Why, my eldest came up to me just this past Tuesday and said: ‘Father, you have to understand that we youthful Catholic youths demand that reformed and actualized synodal structures be put in place to allow for the fully-realized dimensions of the episcopal munus!’
“And with that, I shed a tear of gratitude for the realization that we were finally breaking out of the mold of a self-referential museum-piece church.”
So, however it was done, we’re getting Synodality. It’s a farce, obviously. We knew that. Now everyone knows that. But now we have to figure out what exactly this “synodality” thing is.
As we know the secret to understanding what Francis Bergoglio “means” by any of his convoluted and oblique assertions – to understand, for instance what he means by “collegiality” and “synodality” – is to watch what he does. For nonsense like bishops doing the hip-hop jiggety at a makeshift disco in the Paul VI Audience Hall, it’s all collegiality and synodal fruitbaskets. But when it comes to things that actually pertain to the governance of the Church, no pope has ever been as autocratic as this one.
Chris Altieri points out at Catholic World Report that in a number of crucial areas of Catholic life, this pope has done the exact opposite of his stated intention: founding and supporting communities of nuns and sisters, the judging of petitions for nullity of marriage and the regulation of seminaries. “It sounds great and looks great on paper. Collegiality and synodality are great, until one tries to do something with them.”
The little-noticed but highly significant clarification in 2016, regarding the need for “consultation” with the Vatican before local bishops approve religious congregations within their jurisdictions — so-called “congregations of diocesan right” — came down clearly on the side of the Vatican. The law governing the erection of institutes of consecrated life — usually small communities of women religious — is ambiguous, and many bishops and canon lawyers read it as merely advising but not requiring consultation. The clarification established once and for all that consultation is necessary before a bishop exercises his power to give any such new community legal recognition. A bishop may still go ahead and recognize the community, even if the Vatican gives an “unfavorable” opinion. That’s how it is on paper, anyway. It is fair to say that a local Ordinary is unlikely to choose such a hill as the place to die on.
The 2016 document overhauling the organization of women religious, “Vultum Dei quaerere,” and the instruction implementing the overhaul, “Cor orans,” which the Vatican released just last month, also subject local religious life to stricter Vatican scrutiny and more direct Vatican control than ever previously countenanced. Most significantly, Cor orans establishes that houses of religious sisters must have at least eight professed women religious living permanently in them if they are to maintain their autonomy. If the number of women in a house drops to five professed religious, the community forfeits its right to elect a superior, and must inform the Congregation for Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life of the development, after which the Congregation is to form an ad hoc committee to choose an administrator for the community.
Recent Vatican interventions in the organization of seminary education also restrict the latitude diocesan bishops and regional bodies have over their formation houses. That may be necessary and might even be too small a step in what persons concerned with priestly formation consider to be the right direction, but it is not easy to see how it is “synodal” in any meaningful sense.
To paraphrase Henry Ford, you can have your Synodal Catholicism any colour you like, as long as its Bergoglian.
While Mike Voris rejoices that the “LGBT” issue was “defeated” by pushback from the bishops and the prayers of the faithful, the much more dangerous reality seems to have escaped his notice. First, that acceptance of homosexuality, as we have heard from the closest colleagues of the pope, will continue to be a priority. The “youth” and the Instrumentum Laboris have handily ensured that. And second, that the real purpose of these synods is not the simplistic insertion of the acronym “LGBT” – or even of its attendant political implications – into a Post-Synodal Exhortation.
The purpose of all the Synods is and will continue to be the fundamental rewriting of the nature of the Catholic Ecclesiam. It isn’t sexual morality – that artificial demarcation line between “conservatives” and “liberals” in the Church – that’s at issue, but the much more fundamental concept of what the Church is. It’s time to learn traditional ecclesiology, an area of theology much neglected by the “conservative” Catholic discourse, guided as it is by the tenets of Americanism, that super-doctrine that doesn’t like the Social Reign of Christ the King very much.
A “conservative” like Mike won’t perhaps immediately grasp the seriousness of this. Obviously to many people the “defeat” of the acceptance of aberrant sexuality at the Synod is something to cheer. But it was a red herring. Meanwhile, the work of the Bergoglian retrovirus continues on to the next phase, mostly unopposed by the “conservative” paradigm unable to identify the real dangers.
This is the vigil of the Feast of Christ the King. It is time to start thinking and learning all we can about the meaning of that long-lost Catholic teaching.
After all that "work", the Synodal Eminences got to attend a little D-to-the-isco!
The dance is lit and the beat is fire. Watch the video clip HERE.
 Not a “bar” by North American standards, I’d like to stress. In Italy even the smallest village has at least a couple of “bars” that sell you your “breakfast” of coffee and croissants in the mornings, and the “aperitivi” in the evenings after six. They close at eight, when everyone goes home to have dinner. It’s an Italian social institution, akin to the village pub in England. Anyway, my internet at home is off until tomorrow and I’m having a pint and using the wifi.
 I believe it, don’t you?
 Thanks, JPII. One sees why Bergoglio was moved to canonise the man who made it all possible.
 or whatever they’re calling it now…