EDITORIAL
Is the Catholic Church Going the Way of the Episcopal Church?

June 2006By Dale Vree



In our New Oxford Notes (Jan. 2003, and Nov. 2004) we noted how the "Shorter Form" in the Lectionary omits some politically incorrect sayings of the New Testament having to do with Hell and with wives being subordinate to their husbands (although they do appear in the "Longer Form").

But when it comes to homosexuality, there are passages in the Lectionary that are completely omitted (not to be found in any "Longer Form"). In the Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, First Reading, Cycle C, in the story of Sodom and Gomorrah (Gen. 18:20-32), the Lord says, "their sin is so grave," but we're not told what that grave sin is. The following chapter does make it explicit -- the sin of active homosexuality -- but the Lectionary omits it. In the Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Abraham bargains with the Lord. Abraham says, "Suppose there were fifty innocent people in the city...." The Lord replies, "If I find fifty innocent people in the city of Sodom, I will spare the whole place for their sake." Abraham continues to bargain, and at the end, Abraham says, "What if there are at least ten there?" The Lord replies, "For the sake of those ten, I will not destroy it." The reading ends here on a happy note.

The Lord's raining down fire and brimstone on Sodom and Gomorrah is not found in the Sunday Lectionary. Only in the Weekday Lectionary will you find it (Gen. 19:15-29), and only one percent (at a maximum) of Catholics attend weekday Masses. But again we're not told what the sin of the people of Sodom and Gomorrah is. It's made explicit in Genesis 19:4-7, the same chapter. It's the sin of active homosexuality, but the Lectionary editors chose to omit it.

With the biblical illiteracy of so many Catholics, how many will know it's the sin of active homosexuality?

You will not find Jude, verse 7, in either the Sunday Lectionary or the Weekday Lectionary: "Likewise, Sodom, Gomorrah, and the surrounding towns...in-dulged in sexual promiscuity and practiced unnatural vice, [and] serve as an example by undergoing punishment of eternal fire."


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Back to June 2006 Issue

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Mr. Ragcia makes good observations here. I believe Bishop Fellay put it very accurately, as well, when he said that Pope Benedict is a liberal in his mind (because of his modern German education), but old-fashioned at heart (in his love of sacred music and liturgy). Posted by: Mike Ezzo
July 17, 2006 09:31 PM EDT
Can anyone give me the chapter and verse for the traditional Sins Crying Out to Heaven for Vengeance? I recently happened to run across another reference to this. It clearly implied that this is from the Bible, and I'd like to look it up. Posted by: Big Pete
July 02, 2006 08:26 AM EDT
"sins that cry to heaven" - CCC 1867
1) the blood of Abel (Gen 4:10)
2) sin of the Sodomites (Gen 18:20, 19:13)
3) the cry of the people oppressed in Egypt (Ex 3:7-10)
4) the cry of the foreigner, the widow, and the orphan (Ex 20:20-22)
5) injustice to the wage earner (Deut 24:14-15, James 5:4)
Posted by: jsampoerna
July 04, 2006 05:39 AM EDT
May I ask a simple question on this topic? I believe that scriptures say Christ will be with us until the end of the age. If we consider Christ's other promise that the Paraclete would return to remind us all of what He taught, all being Apostles and disciples. The age must be the age of the Paraclete or Holy Spirit. We can tear ourselves asunder from the Holy Spirit (St Basil)
Can we then drive the paraclete from us if we ignore His reminders,tell him that sin is no longer sin but acceptable and are we re building the foundation with sand? Consider carefully what is happening in the Church today and head ro the Higher Ground. -- Mike Hurcum
Posted by: mike hurcum
June 17, 2006 12:30 PM EDT
I think we can trace this reality of our church at least back to Paul VI who set the precedent to not discipline but to let the truth speak for itself. JPII acted similarly in being passive to so many dissidents and the spread of erroneous beliefs.

While Cardinal Ratzinger seemed to want to purify the church liturgically, B16 is happy to maintain the status quo. It is as if the church wants to let people stay in their sins until they, on their own accord, wish to take the teachings of the church outlined in the CCC seriously. Unfortunately, we are a church of the lowest common denominator.

Perhaps the church knows that modern man in his weakness and selfishness does not respond well to discipline and authoritative directives. So we suffer because we are a church of tares and wheat.

My biggest gripe is how he has done little for the liturgy or the tridentine mass. I had such high hopes.
Posted by: awacs
June 01, 2006 11:10 AM EDT
Former Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger and now Pope Benedict XVI was perceived by many as a resolute conservative “traditionalist”. Liberals, modernists, gay activists, socialists, etc., screamed in utter horror at his election. Orthodox Catholics gave a big sigh of relief and hoped for a return to sanity. But if we look carefully at the background of Benedict we find a very different picture from the one popularly presented in the media. Joseph Ratzinger is as much a product as he was a creator of the reforms of Vatican II. Together with John Paul II he is a “Vatican II pope”. Actually Ratzinger was considered a liberal theologian back in the early days of the Council and as a “peritus” his theology found its way into the Council. Father Ratzinger, Bishop Ratzinger, Cardinal Ratzinger and Pope Benedict XVI is a product of Vatican II and was implemental in “opening” the Church to modernity back in the sixties. His experiences with radical students gave him second thoughts about modernity but in essence he remains a liberal theologian. The difference is that as modernists and liberals moved rapidly to the left they left Fr. Ratzinger first in the center and later in the right of things. But this is not because our current pope became a conservative or traditionalist, but rather because the modernists are now so far gone that the make him seem a conservative. No doubt our pope is a good person and probably very pious but he is not a conservative in the sense of a pre-Vatican II orthodox Catholic. He will not undo the damage created in the name of the “spirit of Vatican II”. He will enforce Paul VI mass, he will maintain the new face of the Church because that is what his whole life has been about. Unfortunately for the Church what is needed as a true orthodox pope, willing to be forceful, determined and capable of re-establishing the Tradition of the Church. The breed of cardinal and bishops product of the sixties, like our current Pope saw themselves as reformists building bridges to modernity. The true orthodox hierarchy of the past saw themselves as preservers of the Tradition, handed down from our Lord Jesus Christ to the Apostles, Church Fathers and continuing in the Church throughout generations. The virus of modernity has so infected the Church that is doubtful it will return to the Tradition of the Fathers and perhaps the remnant orthodox will find places like the Society Pious X to preserve them. Posted by: ragcia149
June 02, 2006 01:43 PM EDT
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