From Argentina, for the Denzinger-Bergoglio
Francis’ universal prayer intention for the month of July is:
“That indigenous peoples, whose identity and very existence are threatened, will be shown due respect” (Vatican Radio, July 6, 2016).
The intention for evangelization is: That the Church in Latin America and the Caribbean, by means of her mission to the continent, may announce the Gospel with renewed vigor and enthusiasm. (Zenit, July 7, 2016)
These intentions proposed by Francis during the month of July warrant commentary.
In reflecting upon prayer, we recall the Gospels narrations of the numerous occasions when Jesus prayed, and especially, the mandate that he gave us to pray with the seven petitions of the Lord’s Prayer, the prayer par excellence. After all, true prayer is praying as Jesus did, and in keeping with what he taught.
For, as Saint Augustine amply teaches, “if we pray rightly, and as becomes our wants, we say nothing but what is already contained in the Lord’s Prayer. And whoever says in prayer anything which cannot find its place in that gospel prayer, is praying in a way which, if it be not unlawful, is at least not spiritual; and I know not how carnal prayers can be lawful, since it becomes those who are born again by the Spirit to pray in no other way than spiritually.” And after a long list of examples, the same Doctor of the Church ends: “And if you go over all the words of holy prayers, you will, I believe, find nothing which cannot be comprised and summed up in the petitions of the Lord’s Prayer. Wherefore, in praying, we are free to use different words to any extent, but we must ask the same things; in this we have no choice” (Saint Augustine, Epistle 130, no.12/22).
Of course, these seven primordial petitions in the Lord’s Prayer may be spread out into many others…however, that “indigenous people be shown due respect” is a prayer intention which seems to stray completely off-track, above all coming from the Chair of Peter. And it is dangerously mistaken in what it insinuates.
After his resurrection, the Lord commanded the Apostles “Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit (Mt 28: 19). He could have also commanded that they appreciate and save local cultures, with the large list of dire anti-evangelical customs these might entail. But that was not the message He gave them. On the contrary, He declared that if certain peoples did not accept the Gospel, the Apostles should shake the dust from their feet…
Thanks to evangelization, the identity and the very existence of many peoples lost in paganism, barbarities and even diabolical worship, were wounded to death with the ‘sword of the Word,’ which, at the same time, brought life and liberty to the souls and the bodies of their ‘victims.’ Such is the history of the American nations, thanks to the labor of missionaries from Spain and Portugal.
Further, this intention of the Bishop of Rome is deliberately ambiguous, since it opens the way for the anti-Catholic theories and practices, touted by many an indigenist pseudo-missionaries, who distort and betray Church teaching, even that of Vatican Council II itself, which they use as their shield in promoting error.
If the “seeds of the Word” – a wonderful expression of Saint Justin and the Fathers of the Church, that the Council employed in various of its documents – are present among all peoples, in however deplorable a state, it is necessary to water these seeds, cultivate and prune them, allowing them to open themselves to fully accepting Jesus Christ, the Word of God.
But, to idolize the seed, without caring for it and suffocating the Word by impeding its blossoming, is the aim of a certain missiology that Francis ends up offering with this universal prayer intention. This is evident.
The worth of a people’s identity depends on just how much the ideal of the Kingdom of Heaven develops and germinates within it. Aren’t we aiming for one flock and one shepherd? Or are we opting for the type of relativistic and eclectic religion promoted by the liberation ‘theologians’?
The so-called universal intention is illustrated with a video “The Pope video – Respect for the indigenous peoples” in which no trace of the Catholic religion can be detected. But the persons presented appear with all sorts of trimmings, necklaces, headdresses, jewelry, feathers, rings and beads… And, as is normal in this video series, Francis appears without his unusual pectoral cross showing over his white baggy cassock. No cross is seen on the wall either, nor a statue of the Blessed Virgin in the background. Not a sign or symbol. The video seems to have been concocted in an anti-Christian marketing laboratory.
The indigenous girl with the defiant attitude at the microphone is, in reality, a mediocre actress wearing television studio make-up. And some of the images of the so-called native peoples portray shocking barbarism or sensuality. Francis calls for respect for their ways of life and threatened traditions, presenting these aberrant figures of doubtful authenticity as models.
Respect what traditions? Cannibalism, polygamy, incest, idolatry and Satanism? He does not come right out and say it, but subliminally insinuates. It appears that Bergoglio professes belief in an immaculate conception of these poor individuals, among whom the light of the Gospel has not yet shone in its full splendor.
While Francis goes about destroying century-old catholic traditions in protocols, liturgies and customs that developed within the light of the Gospel, he wishes to indiscriminately save all pagan traditions – traditions which gradually would die off by their own inglorious dynamism.
Why should a specific culture or tradition be saved? We know that the Church is immortal; but we don’t confess the belief that the indigenous peoples are or should also be. In Noah’s time, the survival of those peoples’ way of life of was not in God’s intentions, nor those of his prophet…
These life-savers that the Bishop of Rome continually throws to these poor people, besides being anti-Christian, are also contradictory, since his policy of welcoming refugees into Europe — at any price and without discernment — leads to a renunciation of the western Christian identity of countries clearly at risk of succumbing to the avalanche of fanatical Muslim barbarity. This factor doesn’t seem to bother Francis, but rather appears to spur him on, as the Denzinger-Bergogolio has already pointed out in one of its studies (Note of Dz-B_EN: see here)
In Evangelii Gaudium, Francis encourages Europeans to not be afraid of losing their own culture:
“Migrants present a particular challenge for me, since I am the pastor of a Church without frontiers, a Church which considers herself mother to all. For this reason, I exhort all countries to a generous openness which, rather than fearing the loss of local identity, will prove capable of creating new forms of cultural synthesis.” (Apostolic exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium, no. 210, November 24, 2013)
Why does Francis want “new forms of cultural synthesis” only for the Christian European peoples? Are the indigenous peoples perhaps a superior race that may not undergo any kind of “cultural synthesis”? Or it is perhaps because such “cultural synthesis” allows Francis to do away with the remains of Western Christian civilization?
Regarding the intention for evangelization (“That the Church in Latin America and the Caribbean, by means of her mission to the continent, may announce the Gospel with renewed vigor and enthusiasm.”) Once again, Francis set his sights on Latin America, the “end of the world”, his origins before he left for Rome. Of course those regions need renewed impetus to announce the Gospel!
But, oddly enough, it is also precisely among the Latin America and the Caribbean indigenous peoples that certain missionaries wish to implant something that is not exactly the Good News coming from Christian Europe, but rather an exotic pre-Colombian “gospel”.
Does Francis think that Christianity has threatened the identity and the existence of the peoples of the new world? Many of his friends think so.
There is something atavistic and recurrent in Francis that continually draws him back to his Rioplatense and Amerindian origins (though his surname and ancestry are Piedmontese), and this is what holds most sway over him, even when formulating intentions for the universal Church. It is a kind of fixation.
Apparently, old Europe – so in need of prayers, and the place from which the Faith reached the America and the Caribbean indigenous peoples – doesn’t deserve the prayers of the Bishop of Rome and world’s faithful.
Could it be because Europe didn’t follow, to the letter, the Bergoglian dream of welcoming each and every refugee without discrimination? Could it be because the European Union is a badly constructed, leaking boat? Could it be because, according to recent elections and surveys, the right wing is asserting itself and the left is falling or stagnating? These realities cut Francis to the heart; he has made it very clear.
What is certain, though, is that Europe needs prayers, be they “universal” or of “evangelization”…
“In many quarters we encounter a general impression of weariness and aging, of a Europe which is now a “grandmother”, no longer fertile and vibrant. As a result, the great ideas which once inspired Europe seem to have lost their attraction, only to be replaced by the bureaucratic technicalities of its institutions.” (Address of Francis to the European Parliament, November 25, 2014). These words, stated almost two years ago, are very serious. But they don’t really worry the one who pronounced them. He affirms the fact… and passes on to another topic; he neither prays, nor strives to change matters, nor requests the faithful to do so.
Another declaration symptomatic of Bergoglian intentions: “I dream of a Europe that is young, still capable of being a mother: a mother who has life because she respects life and offers hope for life. I dream of a Europe that cares for children, that offers fraternal help to the poor and those newcomers seeking acceptance because they have lost everything and need shelter. I dream of a Europe that is attentive to and concerned for the infirm and the elderly, lest they be simply set aside as useless. I dream of a Europe where being a migrant is not a crime but a summons to greater commitment on behalf of the dignity of every human being. I dream of a Europe where young people breathe the pure air of honesty, where they love the beauty of a culture and a simple life undefiled by the insatiable needs of consumerism, where getting married and having children is a responsibility and a great joy, not a problem due to the lack of stable employment. I dream of a Europe of families, with truly effective policies concentrated on faces rather than numbers, on birth rates more than rates of consumption. I dream of a Europe that promotes and protects the rights of everyone, without neglecting its duties towards all. I dream of a Europe of which it will not be said that its commitment to human rights was its last utopia” (Address, May 6, 2016).
Francis’ dreams are true nightmares. The dimension of faith and interest in the salvation of souls is missing altogether. It is a dream that can be called Rotarian, if not outright masonic.
Regarding the mission with the indigenous, Pius XII used very different language than that of Francis:
“Another end remains to be achieved; and We desire that all should fully understand it. The Church from the beginning down to our own time has always followed this wise practice: let not the Gospel on being introduced into any new land destroy or extinguish whatever its people possess that is naturally good, just or beautiful. For the Church, when she calls people to a higher culture and a better way of life, under the inspiration of the Christian religion, does not act like one who recklessly cuts down and uproots a thriving forest. No, she grafts a good scion upon the wild stock that it may bear a crop of more delicious fruit.
Although owing to Adam’s fall, human nature is tainted with original sin, yet it has in itself something that is naturally Christian; and this, if illumined by divine delight and nourished by God’s grace, can eventually be changed into true and supernatural virtue.
This is the reason why the Catholic Church has neither scorned nor rejected the pagan philosophies. Instead, after freeing them from error and all contamination she has perfected and completed them by Christian revelation. So likewise the Church has graciously made her own the native art and culture which in some countries is so highly developed. She has carefully encouraged them and has brought them to a point of aesthetic perfection that of themselves they probably would never have attained. By no means has she repressed native customs and traditions but has given them a certain religious significance; she has even transformed their feast days and made them serve to commemorate the martyrs and to celebrate mysteries of the faith. In this connection, St. Basil says very well: “Just as dyers prepare the material to be dyed by certain processes beforehand and only when this has been done do they color it with purple or some other color: likewise, if the unfading glory of the just is to be ours for all time we shall first be prepared by these external rites and then we shall master the teachings and mysteries of Faith. When we become accustomed to looking at the reflection of the sun in the water, we shall turn to gaze upon the sun itself. . . Certainly the essential function of a tree is to produce fruit in season; still the foliage that its branches also bear serves to adorn it. In the same way the primary fruit of the soul is truth itself; but the garb of natural culture is a welcome addition, just as leaves provide shade for the fruit and add to its beauty. Thus Moses, a man of the greatest renown for his wisdom, is said to have come to the contemplation of Him, Who is, only after being trained in Egyptian lore. So later the wise Daniel is said to have been first schooled in Babylon in the wisdom of the Chaldeans, and only then to have come to know Divine Revelation.” (S. Basil., Ad adolescentes. 2) (Pius XII. Encyclical Evangelii Praecones, no. 56-58, June 2, 1951)
Pius XII points toward conversion through the preservation of aboriginal values that are Christianized. Francis points toward the persistence of paganism without a shadow of regeneration. But… what else can be expected of one who doesn’t take the light of the faith as guide? Could he propose otherwise? Truly, each yields according to its kind.
In the Asian continent, where Christianity only reaches one in a hundred, wouldn’t it be more opportune to pray that the faith of Jesus Christ be sown in those regions and produce fruit? In the Vatican do they perhaps consider Asia to be enhanced with the “richness” of such diverse religions and ancestral philosophies as Buddhism, Muslimism, Hinduism…atheism, etc.?
And maybe we shouldn’t even touch on Africa… Its situation resembles that of the Americas, exacerbated by the fact that the Gospel message has taken little root there until now. Inculturation didn’t yield much; or it was done poorly… Indeed, how much prayer these peoples need!
In closing we ask, wouldn’t it be more appropriate for a father and shepherd to request prayers for the impoverished Venezuelans, the persecuted Cubans, the massacred Syrians, the aborted children or the broken marriages?
But it was deemed more politically correct to recall the indigenous peoples; not in order to catechize and baptize them, but rather to confirm them in their ancestral paganism. Is this the attitude of a father and shepherd?
What does the future hold for us? In the months that come will he ask us to pray about things as bizarre as the seals in extinction, global warming or against the stock market speculation and market economy?
In view of the Bishop of Rome’s recent prayer intentions, it seems to us that the most urgent intention is to pray for him…