Pope Francis meets with Father James Martin in private audience

Jesuit Father James Martin, author and editor at large of America magazine, meets in a private audience with Pope Francis on Sept. 30, 2019 (Foto ©Vatican Media)

Pope Francis received James Martin, S.J., in a 30-minute private audience in the papal library of the Vatican’s Apostolic Palace this morning, Sept. 30, in what is seen here as a highly significant public statement of support and encouragement for this U.S. Jesuit. Father Martin is well known as a public speaker, author and for his pastoral ministry to L.G.B.T. people.

“I was very moved by my encounter with a real pastor,” a joy-filled Father Martin told America after the meeting. “I am most grateful to the Holy Father for his generosity in granting me an audience in the midst of his busy schedule,” he said.

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Father Martin would not reveal what the pope said to him in the course of their conversation, except that “we both laughed several times.” He did say, however, that “among other things, I shared with Pope Francis the experiences of L.G.B.T. Catholics around the world, their joys and their hopes, their griefs and concerns. I also spoke about my own ministry to them and how they feel excluded.” He concluded, “I saw this audience as a sign of the Holy Father’s care for L.G.B.T. people.”

“I was very moved by my encounter with a real pastor,” a joy-filled Father Martin told America after the meeting.

[Explore all of Father James Martin, SJ’s articles]

It was their third meeting but their first substantial conversation. Significantly, it took place not as a private encounter in Santa Marta, the Vatican guesthouse where he lives, but in the pope’s private library where he meets heads of states and international organizations, cardinals and bishops conferences, leaders of the other Christian denominations and of the world’s major religions, as well as distinguished persons. By choosing to meet him in this place, Pope Francis was making a public statement. In some ways, the meeting was the message. They spoke to each other, seated at the table where the pope meets his high-level visitors. The encounter lasted 30 minutes and was conducted in English and Spanish with the assistance of a translator, who was the only other person present.

Father Martin, editor-at-large for America, first met Pope Francis after Mass at Santa Marta, the Vatican guesthouse where the pope lives, in 2016. At the time, Francis greeted him briefly. They met for the second time early last week when the pope greeted him along with other members of the plenary assembly of the Vatican’s Dicastery for Communications. On that occasion, Francis, who had appointed the Jesuit as a consultant to the dicastery in 2017, invited Father Martin to meet him in a private audience. The audience took place today between 11:30 a.m. and 12:00 p.m. (Rome time).

A Vatican source (who asked not to be named) told America before the audience that Pope Francis had read Father Martin’s 2017 book Building a Bridge: How the Catholic Church and the LGBT Community Can Enter Into a Relationship of Respect, Compassion, and Sensitivity. The same source said the pope was also aware that Father Martin had been heavily attacked by some people, including clerics, in the United States, sometimes viciously, for that book, as well as for his lectures and ministry to L.G.B.T. people.

Father Martin revealed that, at his request, Pope Francis wrote a personal note to his nephew, Matthew, who is taking the name Francis for his confirmation.

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Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

In today's world, some will now be looking for a transcript of this private conversation. I believe Fr. Martin's heart is in the right place, even though I think some of his statements are leading some people astray. Anyhow, I think Archbishop Chaput's friendly written interaction with Fr. Martin (when the latter spoke publicly in the Philadelphia diocese) gets the balance right in this encounter (link below). Some quotes from the letter from Chaput:
"Father Martin has also, at times, been the target of bitter personal attacks. As I’ve said previously, such attacks are inexcusable and unChristian."
"In reality, Father Martin has sought in a dedicated way to accompany and support people with same-sex attraction and gender dysphoria. Many of his efforts have been laudable, and we need to join him in stressing the dignity of persons in such situations."
"At the same time, a pattern of ambiguity in his teachings tends to undermine his stated aims, alienating people from the very support they need for authentic human flourishing."
"Again to his credit, Father Martin has stressed that, “as a Catholic priest, I have … never challenged [the Church’s] teachings, nor will I.” But what is implied or omitted often speaks as loudly as what is actually stated, and in the current climate, incomplete truths do, in fact, present a challenge to faithful Catholic belief." http://catholicphilly.com/2019/09/archbishop-chaput-column/father-james-martin-and-catholic-belief/

Vince Killoran
2 months ago

"Gets the balance right"? I don't think so--Archbishop Chaput noted, with regret, that he was unable to prevent Fr. Martin from speaking in Philadelphia since the event was at an institution run by a religious order.

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Vince - Archbishop Chaput never said he regretted that he was unable to prevent Fr. Martin from speaking. He was explaining his jurisdiction to requests that he do so. He even permitted Fr. Martin to write an Op-ed response (link below). Obviously, both men have stark differences in how to bring the Gospel to people with same-sex attraction. But, given that difference, this was a very respectful and collegial exchange. Fr. Martin ended his Op-Ed with "I remain grateful for the Archbishop’s asking people not to engage in “ad hominem” attacks, and I appreciate the careful tone of his letter and have always appreciated his kind communications with me. And may I take this opportunity to thank him for his service to my beloved hometown of Philadelphia." Perhaps, despite his tone, Fr. Martin was fuming about this letter and the Jesuits arranged the meeting with Pope Francis to buttress his credibility when the most impressive episcopal intellectual in America (and perhaps, worldwide) points out how his approach can in fact be counterproductive?
http://catholicphilly.com/2019/09/commentaries/fr-martin-responds-to-archbishop-chaputs-critique/

Vince Killoran
2 months ago

Let's re-read the Archbishop's words: "A local bishop is typically unable to do that, since most Catholic universities operate under the authority of the religious community that sponsors them."

He could have written that he welcomed his talk, or that he would not--even if he could--prohibit it. Instead, he used the first paragraph to explain, in legal terms, why he couldn't stop his visit. The rest of his statement is a plea to be respectful to Fr. Martin, and that Fr. Marin was wrong, wrong, wrong.

Michaelangelo Allocca
2 months ago

First, how clever of you to accuse Fr. Martin of hypocrisy while pretending to praise the mutual cordiality of his exchange with Chaput.
Second: can you provide (and no, "his homophobic ideology is totally in sync with mine" does not count) even ONE piece of evidence for "the most impressive episcopal intellectual in America"???

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Michaelangelo (?sp) - it is not a controversial statement. You may be so preoccupied with gay ideology that you are not familiar with the Archbishop's extensive intellectual output, including homilies, articles, Op-eds, essays, speeches and books. It is clear he comes from the left-of-center on economic and immigration issues (he was an active volunteer in the presidential campaign of Robert Kennedy and even supported Jimmy carter in 1976 as a young priest) and is a scholar of scripture and secular issues across the spectrum. Here is a list of his books (all still available on Amazon) that should provide all the evidence any objective observer could need.
1. Living the Catholic Faith
2. Strangers in a Strange Land: Living the Catholic Faith in a Post-Christian World
3. Render Unto Caesar: Serving the Nation by Living Our Catholic Beliefs in Political Life
4. A Heart on Fire: Catholic Witness and the Next America
5. A New Friendship: The Spirituality and Ministry of the Deacon (co-written with E. Buelt)
6. Exploring Catholic Theology: Essays on God, Liturgy, and Evangelization (co-written with Bishop Barron)

evabetts@yahoo.com
2 months ago

Martin has never challenged Church teachings? Really? In an interview on August 29 with Brandon Ambrosino (an openly gay man engaged to his male partner), Fr. Martin claimed homosexuals aren’t bound by Church teaching on chastity because it hasn’t been “received” by the LGBT community. "For a teaching to be really authoritative," he said, "it is expected that it will be received by the people of God, by the faithful. The teaching that LGBT people must be celibate their entire lives has not been received.
This is a heretical statement because it rejects the infallible teaching authority of the Catholic Church, and makes dogma dependent on how it’s “received” by the people. Church teaching isn’t determined by democratic assent or by popular vote. Its truths are absolute, rooted in the Truth, Our Lord Jesus Christ.

Vince Killoran
2 months ago

I know that conservatives has diluted "Sensus fidelium" to something that is meaningless, but it is an important element in Church life.

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Vince - the sensus fidelium is not meaningless, as defined by VC II, but a basic conserving force against novelty. It has always required unanimity (“whole body of the faithful”) and the Magisterium. See CCC 92-94. To restate: the sensus fidelium requires fidelium. When Arianism was all the rage among intellectuals of the time, it was the sensus fidelium that prevented the wheels coming off orthodoxy. I'm sure you are glad that it worked against that novelty. The novelty that a doctrine is not real until it is received or accepted by a privileged minority or a majority is a wholly new criterion. That is the process that has led the Episcopal Church to its near-death experience.

Vince Killoran
2 months ago

SF isn't lining up the troops to go into battle. Nor is it a formula or a democratic ratification. It is discernment. What the laity do in their daily lives must always be compared with the various ways in which the Holy Spirit operates in the church. Declaring something by fiat isn't "universal consent."

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Vince - I understand the concept. But, I don't think it is Catholic. When Jesus said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (Jn 14:6), or His many other declarations, He was declaring something by fiat, not awaiting to be received. When the Church defines the Real Presence in the Eucharist, or the priesthood, or marriage, they are not waiting for people to "get it" or reject it, or offer some alternative explanation. Same with Humanae Vitae and contraception and even masturbation. They are never presented with a "receive or disbelieve" option. The problem with your sense of sensum fidelium is that it is not present anywhere in any VC II or Church documents. It is an idea that comes from outside the Church and has been rejected by the Magisterium and the Councils.

Judith Jordan
2 months ago

evebetts--
Could you please give the source of this so we may read Father Martin's complete statement.

Michaelangelo Allocca
2 months ago

She probably can't, since the very concept of giving an interview to an openly gay, engaged-to-be-married journalist seems to bother her so much: I would just about guarantee that she only read *about* the interview secondhand, most likely quoted at Church Militant or the like. Plenty of those outlets have commented (with their typical Christian charity) about the interview, and EVERY one of them introduces it with a reference to "in an interview with an openly gay man who is engaged to his male partner." It's pretty clear where she gets her information.

Judith Jordan
2 months ago

Michaelangelo Allocca---
Your comments are my views also. That is why I asked for a source. I believe if we read the complete statement, it would have a very different meaning.

THOMAS E BRANDLIN, MNA
2 months ago

Mr. O'Leary: I agree with you and with Archbishop Chaput.

Trent Shannon
2 months ago

Tim, as a bisexual catholic, I can assure you Fr Martin's heart isn't just in the right place, but its doing me and many others a great service of inclusion and understanding in the church... also that Fr Martin teaches the rules as written in the catechisms - he just isn't a penis about it, like JC wasn't

As for leading people astray, take the beam out of your own eye and come talk to one of us about what we think of the "intrinsically disordered" teaching that is used to discredit us by many "well meaning" rule pushers whose "hearts are in the right place" - the hate the sin mob who forget our Father in heaven forgives sins and we are called to do it seventy times seven times, and to act as the prodigal father...

My door is open, if your heart is...

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Trent - It is probably futile to ask you to clean up your language as it probably comes with the territory (Fr. Martin never addresses bisexuality, FYI, since it contradicts the born-that-way theory, recently thrown into confusion by the large genetic study in Science - link below). You are absolutely right that God the Father will forgive the sins of any truly contrite person, as does the Church (John 20:22-23: "And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive anyone’s sins, their sins are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”). The only exception is what Scripture calls sins against the Holy Spirit (see below). Fr. Martin says he accepts all Church teaching, and rejects nothing. Yet, nearly all his vocal supporters do reject Church teaching, as is evident in the comments here. So, my question to his supporters is: do any of you believe him when he says he accepts all Church teaching? This is an issue of credible honesty rather than doctrine.

From the "Ask a Priest" site (link below): "The offense against the Holy Spirit that stands out is the one Our Lord calls an unforgivable sin. The Catechism in No. 1864 says, “‘Therefore I tell you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven” [Matthew 12:31; cf. Mark 3:29; Luke 12:10]. There are no limits to the mercy of God, but anyone who deliberately refuses to accept his mercy by repenting, rejects the forgiveness of his sins and the salvation offered by the Holy Spirit. Such hardness of heart can lead to final impenitence and eternal loss.” Pope John Paul II explains that that unforgivable blasphemy consists “in the refusal to accept the salvation which God offers to man through the Holy Spirit” (Dominum et Vivificantem, No. 46). It is a sin of stubbornness that rejects God’s mercy. Other sins against the Holy Spirit are commonly said to be: despair, presumption, obstinacy, resisting truth, and envy of another’s spiritual welfare."
https://rcspirituality.org/ask_a_priest/ask-a-priest-what-are-sins-against-the-holy-spirit/

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/massive-study-finds-no-single-genetic-cause-of-same-sex-sexual-behavior/

J Jones
2 months ago

The B in "LGBT", which Fr Martin routinely uses (see title of book and this article) explicitly acknowledges bisexual human beings.

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

It is highly superficial to just say the acronym like a mantra to prevent one from ever addressing the unique challenges facing bisexuals? Does the book at any time address bisexuality specifically? Same for transexuals. It seems to me that all apologists for LGBT in these comboxes rarely address any of the specifics beyond gay and lesbian moral questions. I would wager most have not even thought about it, as their whole response to LGBTQIA is superficial and emotional and to avoid taking the moral questions seriously, preferring to scream and shout epithets against Catholic teaching instead. LGBT is already well out -of-date, and LGBTQ or LGBTQIA or some such is much more politically correct. Fr. Martin has never, to my knowledge, specifically discussed the particular moral questions facing a bisexual. Is it innate or acquired? Does the inherent choice come with a greater culpability to avoid same-sex activity? Is the moral obligation for bisexuals any different than those with exclusive same-sex attraction? How does this self-identification interact with the polyamory ideology? Male homosexuals have long discredited bisexuality. What does Fr. Martin think? This NYT article "Straight, Gay or Lying? Bisexuality revisited "The study, by a team of psychologists in Chicago and Toronto, lends support to those who have long been skeptical that bisexuality is a distinct and stable sexual orientation. People who claim bisexuality, according to these critics, are usually homosexual, but are ambivalent about their homosexuality or simply closeted. "You're either gay, straight or lying," as some gay men have put it."

https://www.nytimes.com/2005/07/05/health/straight-gay-or-lying-bisexuality-revisited.html

John Placette
2 months ago

My questions are: On what basis was the audience requested and approved by the Vatican? Was Pope Francis receiving an editor of a Jesuit news outlet or was he receiving an LGBTQ advocate?

What was his understanding?

Bottom line: Was the Pope fully aware this audience would be used for political purposes?

Reyanna Rice
2 months ago

Fr Martin is in Rome for the plenary meetings of the Dicastery of Communications of which he is a member. The pope addressed the plenary meeting last week. When Fr Martin greeted the pope after, the pope said to him “I want to have an audience with you”. Later the pope’s office called Fr Martin to schedule the meeting for today. You can make if that what you will but Fr Martin’s reporting of the meeting was that the pope listened and was pastoral in his responses. There is an interview of Fr Martin done by Ines San Martin on Crux. Ultimately it doesn’t matter to you nor is it any of your business why the pope chose to meet with Fr Martin nor what they talked about.

Arnoldo Miranda
2 months ago

It isn't your place to tell anybody anything, especially your last comment. Had you finished your comment one sentence earlier, the reader you targeted might be amenable to what you stated.

Vincent Couling
2 months ago

Reyanna, thank you for providing that interesting context. Fr Jim Martin's ministry to us LGBT folk is courageous and prophetic, and he has been viciously attacked and slandered for daring to be an alter Christus to us. Perhaps one of the principal messages Pope Francis was getting across was symbolic ... he has read Fr Martin's book and values his ministry, and is letting Fr Martin's detractors know.

This viewpoint is supported by Fr James Alison's article in The Tablet last week, wherein he speaks of how a Bishop attempted to proscribe his ministry to LGBT folk by laicising him! And of how Pope Francis intervened to protect and encourage his ministry as a theologian and itinerant preacher. Here is the link http://jamesalison.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/James-Alison-Tablet-Sept-2019.pdf

As a gay Catholic I find these events to be extraordinary ... marking a thaw in the relationship between the official church and LGBT Catholics. I pray that these small beginnings will usher in an era of authentic springtime!

Christopher Lochner
2 months ago

Wait a minute, this guy you mentioned is really mixing up his concepts. He mentions "disordered" then says nothing wrong with same sex love (sex really) then claims the admonishment to be celibate is a terrible burden. But as a priest he's supposed to be celibate, right? Reminds me of a hetero I knew who, while a priest, was cruising the young adult groups for a wife, which he promptly found, married, and was excommunicated, and still claims innocence to this day and anguish over the "mean old church" actions. So, did Allison leave because he was gay- probably not. Did he leave because of celibacy- yes. Argue LGBTQ outreach or argue married priests but don't make someone who is astoundingly self-centered into a hero because that is a false narrative. After all, anyone who is gay is not automatically correct on an issue. And I wonder if when we mention LGBTQ we mean regular people or, much more likely, people of power.

John Placette
2 months ago

If this doesn't matter, why publish it? As a Catholic Deacon, I am obligated to disseminate the official teaching of the church. It bothers me that a meeting is publicized, but what is discussed is not.

Christopher Scott
2 months ago

“Father Martin would not reveal what the pope said to him...”

Why not?

So what is the point of this article?

Reyanna Rice
2 months ago

There is an interview of Fr Martin done by Ines San Martin on Crux that has more detail. It was essentially a private meeting so why do you need to know what they talked about?

Happy Cathlic
2 months ago

Too much in the Church is done behind closed doors.

The pope talks about a new church...well it's time.

Sha'Pearl Jones
2 months ago

A new church? If I wanted that, I'd be a Protestant. No thanks. I'm happy with the church established by Jesus Christ.

Nora Bolcon
2 months ago

I have to say - it is nice to see someone view themselves as a happy Catholic. I don't know that I can meet that description but it is nice to know some of us are happy out there.

Christopher Scott
2 months ago

“It was essentially a private meeting so why do you need to know what they talked about?”

Reyanna...because they keep sending me envelopes to put money in!

Nora Bolcon
2 months ago

Hi Reyanna,. I think Chris is not sure why an entire article is being written about what didn't get said during their mtg. If they want to be private about the meetings subject matter then why write an article that they met in the first place?

Nora Bolcon
2 months ago

I have to ditto your comment Christopher. What is the point of bringing up that he met with the Pope, if not to write about the content of the meeting? It's like telling some one, Hey! I read this great book, and that's it - I have nothing more to say! Huh?

Swan Lake
2 months ago

(With sarcasm) Perhaps Father Martin was relying on “A Vatican source (who asked not to be named),” to speak for him as it appears we have sadly succumbed to our country’s vast media ploys.

Michael Barberi
2 months ago

Fr. Martin is a hero and a voice to those that have been disenfranchised by the Catholic Church and said to have an innate intrinsic disorder that leads them to sin. At the moment, there is no bridge that the Catholic Church and the LGBT community can use to enter into a relationship of respect, compassion and sensitivity. All anyone hears is that those born with a same-sex orientation must practice a lifetime of sexual abstinence, full stop, for their salvation. Many face discrimination.

Much can and should be done by the Church for those who have not chosen to be homosexual. Let's pray for Pope Francis, Fr. Martin and for those of our LGBT brothers and sisters.

Robert Lewis
2 months ago

Actually, my frustration with Fr. Martin stems from the fact that he refrains from suggesting that the Church CAN offer the one proposal that COULD begin to alleviate the alienation that the lgbtq community feel from the Church. It is called "adelphopoiesis" (brother-making), and it IS part of the Church's ancient tradition. It is described at length in the extremely erudite and well-researched tome by Alan Bray, entitled "The Friend."

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Archbishop Chaput addresses the "intrinsically disordered" wording in his letter to Fr. Martin. “It is crucially important to understand that saying a person has a particular inclination that is disordered is not to say that the person as a whole is disordered. Nor does it mean that one has been rejected by God or the Church." and
"It’s worth recalling here that the Catechism also describes lust, extra-marital relations, and contracepted sex (2351), masturbation (2352), and even non-sexual sins such as lying and calumny (1753), as intrinsically “disordered.” The suggestion that the wisdom of the Church, rooted in the Word of God and centuries of human experience, is somehow cruel or misguided does grave harm to her mission. Families have been destroyed because of this misperception, and Father Martin regrettably contributes ambiguity to issues that demand a liberating biblical clarity."

Judith Jordan
2 months ago

Tim O'Leary---
Bravo to Father Martin and Pope Francis and bless them for caring for an abused, mistreated, and discriminated against community…the LGBT. I have not found Archbishop Chaput to be a thoughtful, caring, considerate Shepard. When he was the Archbishop of Denver he declared that two children in a Catholic school would not be permitted to return to school the next year because their parents were gay. This was extraordinarily cruel and heartless toward the children and abusive of the parents. Does Chaput bar children from Catholic schools whose parents are divorced; remarried outside the Church; acknowledge they practice birth control; perpetuate domestic violence; and, those who are known to commit serial adultery. It is my understanding that he does not.
https://www.commonwealmagazine.org/archbishop-chaput-no-catholic-education-children-gay-couples-updated

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Judith - Sounds like you have never met the man. A shepherd has to be caring and vigilant at the same time, to prevent his sheep from straying into a ditch. So many Catholic-lite individuals today are enamored with the trappings of Catholicism while they reject the saving doctrine of Catholicism. They see it as a better social club or a day care center for their kids.

Judith Jordan
2 months ago

Tim O'Leary
I have never met Chaput but I know about his positions and explanations for them based on what he himself says and writes. You did not address the crux of my criticism. If Chaput is a caring and vigilant Shepard, why does he not apply the same standards that he applies to gay parents to other parents who are divorced; remarried outside the Church; acknowledge they practice birth control; perpetuate domestic violence; and, those who are known to commit serial adultery? If Chaput's position is not hypocritical, then what is?

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Judith - The explanation is rather simple and I am surprised you don't understand it already. Most sins are private and are recognized as sins by the individual. Some sins are public and are denied as sins and even paraded as virtues. The former are always handled with forgiveness and mercy for a contrite heart. The latter cannot be forgiven because the heart is not contrite. A person can fall 7 times 70, and as long as they are contrite, can be forgiven 7 times 70. Another person can sin gravely once and cannot be forgiven because they refuse to be contrite. The one necessary component of the forgiveness is lacking. Jesus dined with sinners who knew they were sinners and were contrite ("go sin no more"). He railed against those who refused to recognize they were sinners and even boasted of their virtue.

Robert Lewis
2 months ago

Correct me, if I'm wrong about you, please, O'Leary, but what I've regularly perceived about you is that you consider that ANNOUNCING that one is "same sex attracted," and demanding that the Church devise a ministry and a specific religious discipline for oneself and others like oneself IS "sinful," irrespective of whether or not one is chaste and celibate, and irrespective of whether or not one actually AGREES with the Church's position on "gay marriage." You seem to consistently side with the less-than-adequate ministry "Courage," which "encourages" the secretive life of the closet, does not "encourage" gays to PUBLICLY embrace the challenge of sublimating "same sex love" and seek PUBLIC support for that challenge--and, instead, treats "same sex love" as some kind of shameful thing, in the same way that AA treats alcoholism. That is unacceptable and a thorough-going capitulation to the homophobia that the Catholic Church historically created and nurtured. To wish that "gays" would shut up, hide in the closet and accept being unaccompanied for the entirety of their adult lives is viciously homophobic, whether or not one professes to "love the sinner, but hate the sin."

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Lewis - you used the "viciously homophobic" epithet against Pope Francis's words recently, while you were also ridiculing the Gospel admonition to "love the sinner, but hate the sin," You can dismiss the teaching of popes and the Catechism and the Scriptures all you like, but, these hates are yours alone, and not Catholic.

Robert Lewis
2 months ago

Ah, ha, so you don't respond to my question: I'll take that as affirmation of what I said about you! (You're such a weasel; you know very well that my quote of the Scriptural admonition means that I don't believe YOU are capable of adhering to it, but you twist my words into ridicule of the text itself. You are an extremely unscrupulous and devious interlocutor.)

Judith Jordan
2 months ago

Tim O'Leary---
I know and understand the principle, but you still skated the issue. For instance, people who marry outside the church or publicly acknowledge using birth control are public sins and, at times, are paraded as virtues. However, Chaput permits their children in Catholic schools. You can’t get around the fact that he uses a double standard.

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Judith - I do not believe you are right about your assumption. Marrying outside the Church is not in itself sinful (Jews and Hindus and Muslims do it all the time and are never criticized by the Church). People who are divorced and do not remarry can also be in full communion. In the Catholic community, you and I know of many individuals with heterodox confusions or ideas about all sorts of things. If these materialize in some decisive way (like working for planned parenthood, taking communion in a protestant denomination, joining a neo-nazi organization or a witch's coven, marrying a mistress when divorced or joining in a gay marriage) and are boasted about, in full acknowledge of their contradiction with Catholic doctrine, then they rise to a public repudiation of the Catholic Church, akin to offering incense to a pagan God. For the good of the faithful, a public heresy demands a public response from the Church.

Judith Jordan
2 months ago

Tim O'Leary--

Jews and Hindus and Muslims have many beliefs that differ from the Catholic Church and the Church does not set the rules for them. I agree that a divorce Catholic who does not marry outside the church is in full communion. However, the Church has always taught that Catholics who get a divorce and may not get remarried outside of the Church. They must wait until they receive an annulment and then they may get married within the Church. I do not know why you are so resistant to what I am saying. Obviously, their marriage outside the Church is a public statement. People in this status have children in Catholic schools Are you aware of Chaput ever prohibiting their children from attending?

Also, when did the Church state that Catholics may not join a neo-Nazi group? If true, I am delighted to hear it, especially since the Church did not condemn the Nazis in the 1930s and 40s, a colossal failure of morality.

Tim O'Leary
2 months ago

Judith - your knowledge of recent history is as bad as the older events. "America’s Catholic leadership on Sunday spoke out again, this time specifically condemning “the evil of racism, white supremacy and neo-nazism.” (link below) You might have also never heard the opposition of the popes to the Nazi's in Germany, praised at the time by the NYT (" Pius XII a "lonely voice crying out of the silence of a continent") and Albert Einstein and commemorated by Israel with a forest (link below). Also, see here: "the BBC’s editorial complaints unit has now concluded that the item was unfair. According to the unit, the BBC reporter “did not give due weight to public statements by successive popes or the efforts made on the instructions of Pius XII to rescue Jews from Nazi persecution, and perpetuated a view which is at odds with the balance of evidence.”
https://www.yadvashem.org/odot_pdf/Microsoft%20Word%20-%20684.pdf: " in the post-war years distinguished Jewish figures expressed gratitude to the Vatican for their endeavours and a forest was planted in Israel, in memory of the Pope on his death in 1958. "
https://cruxnow.com/church-in-the-usa/2017/08/14/u-s-bishops-explicitly-reject-racism-white-supremacy-neo-nazism/
https://catholicherald.co.uk/news/2016/12/09/bbc-admits-it-underestimated-the-churchs-opposition-to-hitler/

Judith Jordan
1 month 4 weeks ago

Tim O'Leary---
Wouldn’t it be more pleasant if you disagreed with me rather than your common assaults such as, “Your knowledge of recent history is as bad as the older events.” Have you ever considered the possibly that perhaps I have read publications that you have not? Anyway, I knew the Church was condemning racism, white supremacy, but I did not know about the Nazis.

The defenses you wrote are the common defenses the Catholic Church and its defenders have promoted for years. Yes, Pius XII did save some Jews. Yes, some Jews defended him. Yes, the Pope was honored by Israel. But I find that after suffering at the hands of Christians for centuries, the Jewish community is always ready to assume relations with their former tormentors and honor them in some way hoping for some reduction of anti-Semitism. Israel even has relations with Germany.

People who praise Pius for saving some Jews, neglect to talk about after WW II, when the Vatican smuggled Nazis out of Europe while the Allies were searching for them. The Vatican saved some of the worse. I think this included Adolf Eichmann and Dr. Josef Mengele who performed experimental “surgery” on Jews, including children.

The Jewish groups have long condemned Pius XII for his silence during the Holocaust as do many others.
https://www.commentarymagazine.com/articles/how-the-catholic-church-sheltered-nazi-war-criminals/

Pius XII maintained a policy of neutrality during World War II and never denounced fascism. My God, how can one be neutral between the Allies and the Nazis? The major criticism of Pius was his “deadly” silence. After the horrors of the death camps had been revealed in 1945, Pius XII still rebuffed all pleas and requests to make a public statement against anti-Semitism.

The Church finally formally apologized to the Jewish community for not taking more decisive action to challenge the Nazis to stop the extermination of the Jews. This was, "We Remember: A Reflection on the Shoah" in 1998. The Church sure didn’t rush into it did they?
http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/pontifical_councils/chrstuni/documents/rc_pc_chrstuni_doc_16031998_shoah_en.html

Pope Francis ordered the opening of the secret archives of Pius XII. I think the following responses from the Jewish community indicate they have not absolved Pius.

“For more than 30 years, the American Jewish Committee has called for the full opening the Holy See’s Secret Archives from the period of World War II,” said Rabbi David Rosen, the group’s International Director of Interreligious Affairs, in an official statement.

A spokesperson for Yad Vashem, the World Holocaust Remembrance Center, issued a statement as well. “For years, Yad Vashem has called for the opening of these archives, which will enable objective and open research as well as comprehensive discourse on issues related to the conduct of the Vatican in particular, and the Catholic church in general, during the Holocaust,” the statement reads. “Yad Vashem expects that researchers will be granted full access to all documents stored in the archives.” An exhibit at Yad Vashem criticizes Pius.
https://www.1310kfka.com/2019/03/vatican-to-open-wwii-archives-of-pope-pius-xii/

Also see “Canonization of Pope Pius XII.” Look under the heading “Opposition Jewish Groups.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canonization_of_Pope_Pius_XII

As soon as the Nazis started publishing their views, Pius XII should have condemned them and threatened excommunication of every Catholic Nazi. Instead , he said nothing and even entered into a Concordat with the Nazis. This was the Nazis’ first international agreement and gave them a boost in international status which is what Hitler wanted.

To my knowledge, the Church never excommunicated any Nazi with the exception of Dr. Joseph Goebbels. What was he excommunicated for? Not for killing millions of people, but for marrying a divorced woman out of the Church. The Church made itself look ridiculous. I have seen pictures of Nazis in uniforms receiving Holy Communion. Disgusting.

David Kertzer is a professor of Anthropology and History at Brown University. Kertzer was given access to long-sealed Vatican archives which he meticulously researched. He wrote a book about the Church’s direct role in the spread of modern anti-Semitism. “The Popes Against the Jews: The Vatican's Role in the Rise of Modern Anti-Semitism.”
https://www.nytimes.com/2001/09/23/books/chapters/the-popes-against-the-jews.html

rose-ellen caminer
2 months ago

I would suggest that Fr. Martin and Pope Francis met to discuss the reality of ministering to a real community of souls who happen to be LGBT. There is no bridge without searching for or building one. Telling God's children who are born with a same-sex orientation that they must practice a lifetime of sexual abstinence when they have not been called to the priesthood is more extreme than the cross that heterosexuals are asked to bear. Heterosexuals can be forgiven for their premarital transgressions or find acceptable outlet in matrimony. The LGBT souls are doomed to rely upon nocturnal emissions and still be subjected to the presumption of being sinners. God bless Fr. Martin and Pope Francis for their devotion to their calling.

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