Perhaps Judas Was the First to Sing "A Kiss is Just a Kiss"
by Thomas A. Droleskey
You must remember this
A kiss is just a kiss, a sigh is just a sigh.
The fundamental things apply
As time goes by.
(Lyrics to "As Time Goes By")
No, the traitor Judas Iscariot did not sing "As Time Goes By," which was written by Herman Hepfeld in 1931 and immortalized by actor Dooley Wilson in the motion picture Casablanca eleven years later. He did, though, give the most famous kiss in history as he betrayed his Divine Master, Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ for the thirty pieces of silver that he had received from the Pharisees:
Then went one of the twelve, who was called Judas Iscariot, to the chief priests,  And said to them: What will you give me, and I will deliver him unto you? But they appointed him thirty pieces of silver.. (Matthew 26: 14-15.)
As he was yet speaking, behold a multitude; and he that was called
Judas, one of the twelve, went before them, and drew near to Jesus, for
to kiss him.  And Jesus said to him: Judas, dost thou betray the Son of man with a kiss? (Luke 22: 47-48.)
The kiss of Judas that betrayed Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ was the kiss of eternal death for him as he despaired of forgiveness after repenting of what he had done. The passage of time ("as time goes by") can never undo the act of that kiss, so symbolic of our acts of betrayal of Christ the King in our own daily lives as, if we are honest with ourselves, there have been many times in our own lives when we have played the role of the traitor Judas by pretending to be the friend of the King of Love on Calvary when we have quite instead preferred lives of spiritual lukewarmness and, yes, even Mortal Sin to growing in fervor and grace by cooperating with the Sanctifying Graces that He won for us on the wood of the Holy Cross as He shed every single drop of His Most Precious Blood to redeem us on Good Friday. Unlike Judas the traitor, though, we attempt to rise up from our sins and to seek out the ineffable mercy of the Chief Priest and Victim of every Mass at the hands and by the ministrations of our true priest who is acting in persona Christi in the Sacred Tribunal of Penance.
Ah, but unrepentant Judases abound in the world, to be found amongst the lords of Modernity in the civil state and amongst the realm of the lords of Modernism in the counterfeit church of conciliarism.
Indeed, when you think about it, ladies
and gentlemen, Judas Iscariot was truly a man for "modern" times. He
was the ultimate naturalist, seeking only earthly treasure and honor
when he could have had the possession of the Beatific Vision for all
eternity in Heaven if only he sought out the ineffable Mercy of the One
Whom He had betrayed with a kiss in the Garden of Gethsemane, Our
Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, God-Himself in-the-very Flesh.
Encapsulated in the person of Judas Iscariot is the very mentality of
"modern man," content to live as though the Incarnation of the Second
Person of the Blessed Trinity made Man in His Most Blessed Mother's
Virginal and Immaculate Womb and His Redemptive Act on the wood of the
Holy Cross, effected during this very week of weeks, Holy Week itself,
are matters of complete indifference to the right ordering of
individuals and their nations.
Judas Iscariot was in the company of God
Himself for three years. He knew that Jesus of Nazareth was God. He was
present when Saint Peter, the Rock upon whom the Catholic Church is
built, confessed Jesus of Nazareth to be the Messias:
And Jesus came into the quarters of Cesarea
Philippi: and he asked his disciples, saying: Whom do men say that the
Son of man is? But they said: Some John the Baptist, and other some
Elias, and others Jeremias, or one of the prophets. Jesus saith to
them: But whom do you say that I am?
Simon Peter answered and said: Thou art
Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answering, said to him:
Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-Jona: because flesh and blood hath not
revealed it to thee, but my Father who is in heaven. And I say to thee:
That thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build my church, and the
gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give to thee the
keys of the kingdom of heaven. And whatsoever thou shalt bind upon
earth, it shall be bound also in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose
upon earth, it shall be loosed also in heaven. Then he commanded his
disciples, that they should tell no one that he was Jesus the Christ.
(Matthew 16: 13-20.)
Judas Iscariot knew of
what Our Lord had proclaimed Himself to be in the presence of the
Pharisees who hated Him precisely because they knew Him to be God and
they did not want that simple fact to interfere with how they conducted
their own lives and the positions that they held among their fellow
Amen, amen I say to you: If any man keep my
word, he shall not see death for ever. The Jews therefore said: Now we
know that thou hast a devil. Abraham is dead, and the prophets; and
thou sayest: If any man keep my word, he shall not taste death for ever.
Art thou greater than our father Abraham, who is dead? and the prophets
are dead. Whom dost thou make thyself? Jesus answered: If I glorify
myself, my glory is nothing. It is my Father that glorifieth me, of whom
you say that he is your God. And you have not known him, but I know
him. And if I shall say that I know him not, I shall be like to you, a
liar. But I do know him, and do keep his word.
Abraham your father rejoiced that he
might see my day: he saw it, and was glad. The Jews therefore said to
him: Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham? Jesus
said to them: Amen, amen I say to you, before Abraham was made, I am.
They took up stones therefore to cast at him. But Jesus hid himself, and
went out of the temple. (John 8: 51-59.)
None of this mattered
to Judas Iscariot. None of it. Not Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus
Christ's proclamation of Himself to be God. Not His Proclamation of
Himself to be very Bread of Life come down from Heaven. None of this
mattered to Judas Iscariot. He had his own naturalistic plans. He was
not going to be denied the money that he could have stolen from the
ointment that Saint Mary Magdalen had poured on the head and the feet of
the Divine Master. He was not going to be associated with a "movement"
that would come to be of "no account" according to the standards of the
world. He had to be "somebody" in the eyes of others. And in the process
of become "somebody" in the eyes of others, of course, he became a
"nobody" by annihilating himself as the victim of his own despair.
So it is with the world around us today, is it not?
Validly baptized and validly confirmed Catholics eschew the Divine
Redeemer, Who becomes present Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity under the
appearances of bread and wine every time a validly ordained bishop or
priest utters the terrible words of Consecration in the Roman Canon (or
in the canons of the various Eastern Rite Divine Liturgies), in order to
be "somebodies" in the eyes of the world. Fame, fortune, political
power, and social prominence must be pursued as though the Incarnation
of the Logos, the very Word through Whom all things were made, the very
reflection of the Father's being, did not have any relevance to daily
life, as though the events of this very week of weeks, Holy Week, were a
matter of complete indifference to the reform of individuals and their
The naturalism of Judas Iscariot is the naturalism of
the world-at-large. It is also the betrayal of the counterfeit church
of conciliarism's demonic "reconciliation" with the anti-Incarnational
principles of Modernity responsible for the religiously indifferentist
state and the popular belief, born of semi-Pelagianism, that human
beings can improve the world by means of their own unaided powers and
without subordinating themselves at all times to the Deposit of Faith
that Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ has entrusted exclusively
to the Catholic Church that He founded upon the Rock of Peter, the
Pope. How many Catholics are going about their business this week
without giving the events of our Redemption any thought at all? How many
Catholics have been plunged headlong into profane activities throughout
the past six weeks of Lent, having absolutely no intention of
withdrawing one little bit from the world so as to participate in the
liturgies of the Paschal Triduum of the Passion, Death and Resurrection
of the Son of God made Man in Our Lady's Virginal and Immaculate Womb by
the power of God the Holy Ghost at the Annunciation?
The counterfeit church of conciliarism is headed by Judases, men who have betrayed the immutable teaching of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ because they have permitted the devil to enter their minds and hearts, tickling their ears with fables about which Saint Paul warned us in his Second Epistle to Saint Timothy:
I charge thee, before God and Jesus Christ, who shall judge the living and the dead, by his coming, and his kingdom:  Preach the word: be instant in season, out of season: reprove, entreat, rebuke in all patience and doctrine.  For there shall be a time, when they will not endure sound doctrine;
but, according to their own desires, they will heap to themselves
teachers, having itching ears:  And will indeed turn away their hearing from the truth, but will be turned unto fables.  But be thou vigilant, labour in all things, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill thy ministry. Be sober. (2 Tim. 4: 1-5.)
Article after article on this site has attempted to point out the fables that are taught by the Judases of the counterfeit of church, including several in the past two weeks (Vesakh, Not Miller, Time at the Vatican, More Zeal for a False God Than Catholics Have for the True God, Saint Vincent Ferrer and Anti-Saint Vincent Ferrers, Night and Day, Night and Day, To Be Loved by the Jews, As We Continue To Blaspheme Christ the King and His True Church, It's A Matter of the Faith, Not of Translations, Coloring Everything He Says and Does, part one and Coloring Everything He Says and Does, part two.) As is well known within a relatively small universe of traditionally-minded Catholics, I was a defender of the indefensible for a long time before I became a public critic of Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II in the middle-to-late 1990s, something that I documented in Singing the Old Songs on January 24, 2008. Although I have come in at the "eleventh hour," so to speak, I have tried very hard in the past five years to document the apostasies and blasphemies and sacrileges of the conciliar Judases, knowing that I have much for which to make reparation by refusing to draw the logical conclusions that were to be reached from my criticisms of the conciliar "popes" and their "bishops" and their horrific liturgical service. There is a place for those who come in at the "eleventh hour," you know.
It as one who loves God as He has revealed Himself to us exclusively through His true Church, the Catholic Church, despite his sins that I have attempted to do penance for the errors of the past, especially for the way in which I remained silent about what I knew was the horror of the Assisi I and the scandalous outdoor "papal" extravaganza liturgical services that were represented to the world as true offerings of Holy Mass. It is indeed shameful to be silent when one knows that he should speak out, especially in defense of the greater honor, majesty and glory of the Most Blessed Trinity. Speak out one must, though, if he wants to save his soul.
I did more than remain silent, though. There were some occasions, including one for which I was most correctly upbraided, when I tried to defend the indefensible, to make excuses for some of Wojtyla/John Paul II's "shortcomings" that were really defections from the Holy Faith Itself. These words of Sacred Scripture applied to my efforts in this regard as I tried to make excuses for the sin of the third conciliar "pope:"
 Incline not my heart to evil words; to make excuses in sins. With men
that work iniquity: and I will not communicate with the choicest of
them.  The just shall correct me in mercy, and shall reprove me: but let not the oil of the sinner fatten my head. For my prayer also shall still be against the things with which they are well pleased: (Psalm 140: 4-5.)
It is as one who did this in my "conservative" and "indulterer" days in the counterfeit church of conciliarism that I write this article of remonstration about just such an effort to make excuses for the sins against the First and Second Commandment committed by the man who will be "beatified" on Low Sunday, May 1, 2011, Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II. Here is the effort to which I refer:
Pope and the Koran
Greetings from Rome
as the Eternal City prepares for Holy Week! (I
have just begun to send out "tweets" as I speak
to different people in Rome and attend different
events. If you would like to follow my "tweets"
go to http://twitter.com/RobertMoynihan
The email I sent out
earlier this week, about the Vatican's decision
to set the annual Feast Day for Blessed Pope
John Paul II as October 22 (he
will be beatified May 1)
prompted many responses from readers, some
enthusiastic, but many highly critical of the
late Pope and of the decision to beatify
Rather than go
through all the praises of Pope John Paul, and
all the criticisms of the man, of his actions
(or lack of action) as Pope, and of the decision
to beatify him, tonight I wanted to say
something rather provocative -- prompted by a
long discussion this evening with a Vatican
monsignor, an expert on the Middle East who
speaks Hebrew and Arabic fluently, having
studied for years in Jerusalem.
Premise: my profound
hope is for peace in the Middle East for all who
profound fear is that a way to peace will not be
found, or chosen, causing fear and suffering for
many, in the region and throughout the world,
especially the children, who are innocent --
before the long-hoped for "time of peace"
One of the great
charges against John Paul is that (it is said) he kissed a copy of the Koran on May 14, 1999
John Paul's critics
say this was a profound mistake, indeed, an act
of profound infidelity inconceivable for a man
chosen to sit on the throne of Peter and to be
the faithful Vicar of Christ on earth -- since
one of the key tenets of the Koran is that Jesus
Christ is not the Lord of
History and Son of God, but merely a
The Koran denies this
central tenet of Christian
Even more than the
assembly in Assisi in 1986, there is a general
consensus among critics of Pope John Paul II and
of his pontificate, and of Benedict XVI's
decision to beatify John Paul, that this "kiss"
was the negative act of John
Paul's life as a Christian, and as a Pope, par
That is was the worst
thing he could have
That it revealed that
he was in some way unfaithful to
Like Judas, who
betrayed Christ with a
That John Paul had
betrayed Christ with a
And I would like to
think that many in the Muslim world would note
I say John Paul was
not wrong to kiss the Koran (if he did kiss
He was not wrong
because the meaning of his kiss was not what his
critics think it
And what was the
meaning of this kiss (which may or may not have
been a kiss)?
meaning was that John Paul, in the context
of a world which was barreling toward 9/11, and
what has come since 9/11, wished to make a
gesture which was against the developing trend:
a gesture of respect toward something beyond and
beneath profound theological
gesture which showed that he disagreed with a
broad-stroke denigration of Islam which can stir
in all believing Christians horrified sentiments
of shock and even
gesture which showed that he sought peace even
with those with whom he was in profound
gesture of a peace.
Christians can be
shocked when they learn of certain Muslim
teachings, ranging from the denial of Christ's
divinity to the denial that he actually died on
So Christian feelings
can be stirred up, and inflamed, and Christians
and Muslims can be set against one another, if
these teachings are emphasized and amplified,
and history shows that this has in fact actually
taken place. It is not just a
John Paul chose not
to inflame, not to stir
He could, perhaps,
have taken the Koran, given him as a gift, and,
with a gesture of shock and horror, tossed it to
Would he have been a
greater soul, a greater saint, a truer
Christian, had he done
Some Catholics might
even argue so!
But I think:
Such a gesture would
have transformed him from an independent servant
of God and agent of God's peace into an
instrument of all those forces which seek
conflict, and benefit from it, thoughtless of
the cost to the
I think it is the
height of superficiality for anyone to imagine
that the Pope of Rome, in receiving the gift of
a book regarded as holy by the followers of
Islam, and bowing toward it, and seemingly
kissing it, was "kissing" those teachings in the
book which run contrary to the Catholic
I repeat: if anyone
would argue that the Pope was kissing the
passages in the book which deny the divinity of
Christ, they would be reading his action with
John Paul spent his
life in prayer. John Paul saw millions of human
beings enslaved and killed. John Paul loved
people, individuals, as Christ commanded: "love
your neighbor as
John Paul did not
wish the world to choose sides in a bloody,
century-long conflict which might lead to the
devastation of huge, fertile regions of the
earth, to the loss of limbs and lives of dozens
and hundreds and thousands and tens of thousands
of soldiers and
In his act of kissing
the Koran (if he did kiss it), the Pope was
kissing a hope.
A hope of
A hope of finding a
way to peace even when people
A hope of finding a
way to peace even when people disagree in the
most profound way, on essential matters --
fighting matters... dying
So I believe that
John Paul, in this situation, was right to kiss
I believe that, far
from being an incident which disqualifies him
from beatification and canonization, it reveals
the true depth of his sanctity, able to go
beyond all commonly accepted limits in a search
for God's will, which has always been -- against
Satan's wiles -- "peace on earth, good will
But did John Paul
actually kiss the
To this day, there
remains a question mark about what he actually
Here is the photo of
that moment, from May 14,
say the Pope was merely bowing toward the book,
not kissing it.
this photo, it is hard to tell, and I myself do
not know the truth of the
at least one authoritative witness says he did
kiss the book.
In an interview with FIDES
News Service (June 1, 1999), Chaldean Catholic
Patriarch Raphael I Bidawid said that he was
present on the occasion:
May 14th I was received by the Pope, together
with a delegation composed of the Shi'ite imam
of Khadum mosque and the Sunni president of the
council of administration of the Iraqi Islamic
Bank. There was also a representative of the
Iraqi ministry of religion. ....
end of the audience the Pope bowed to the Muslim
holy book, the Koran, presented to him by the
delegation, and he kissed it as a sign of
respect. The photo of that gesture has been
shown repeatedly on Iraqi television and it
demonstrates that the Pope is not only aware of
the suffering of the Iraqi people, he has also
great respect for Islam."
is the full text of that interview: http://www.catholicculture.org/news/features/index.cfm?recnum=10415)
was the Iraqi Patriarch really in a position to
see that the Pope's lips actually kissed the
book? I do not know.
the question is irrelevant," the Vatican
monsignor said to me this evening. "Whether he
kissed the book or did not kiss it makes no
difference. He bowed toward it. It was a sign of
respect. But respect for what? Not for errors.
It was respect for a piety toward the ultimate
which is presupposed by any religious attitude
toward reality. It was a gesture of humility,
from a servant of that ultimate and holy
reality, which bore witness to the grace that
Pope John Paul hoped would touch and transform
all those who adhere to Islam, not by force and
hatred, but by invitation, by love. And this is
why he truly was a great saint, and a great
witness to the mysterious will of God for out
world, which is not that it become a wasteland,
but a garden, not a curse, but a blessing. And
for this reason, we were privileged to know him,
and will be privileged to call him
Moynihan, Inside the Vatican, April 15, 2011.)
This is worse than farce. This is a caricature of all that is truly Catholic as a true pope would never put himself in a position to be faced with a decision to appear to venerate in any way the "holy" book of a false religion that is in the grip of the devil and is thus hideous and loathsome in the sight of the true God of Divine Revelation. It is because of Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II's commitment to a false ecumenism that he allowed to be put in a situation where he may have felt compelled to offer a sign of "respect" to the blasphemous Koran that is nothing other than a product of Satan himself, always seek to mock the Catholic Faith and to replace it with the false religions that do his bidding for him, frequently at the point of shedding Catholic blood.
Alas, what could very well have been an "inadvertent" sign of respect for the Koran out of a concern of "offending": Mohammedans and causing problems for Catholics in Iraq and elsewhere in the Mohammedan world, was, quite after all, nothing when when considers that the false "pontiff" consistently acted contrary to the words of Sacred Scripture as they are understood and taught by the Catholic Church and against her authentic Canon Law by asking leaders of false religions to pray to their devils at Assisi in 1986 and in 2002 and by placing himself voluntarily in positions of equality, if not of inferiority, with the "clergy" of various false religions (see Appendix A below for the full text of Bishop George Hay's explanation of the Catholic Church's consistent condemnation of inter-religious "prayer" services), going so far as to administer "joint blessings" with some of them, including the laymen who served as the non-archbishops of Canterbury in the heretical and schismatic Anglican sect.
What else could a man who had become so used to praising the nonexistent ability of false religions to contribute to "peace" and to build the "better" world do than to have to have done with the Koran other than he did in 1999? After all, he praised the voodoo witch doctor in the African country of Benin in 1993 as follows:
"You have a strong attachment to the
traditions handed on by your ancestors.
It is legitimate to be grateful to
your forbears who passed on this sense of the sacred, belief in a single God
who is good, a sense of celebration, esteem for the moral life and for
harmony in society." (From the Italian text of Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II's address to leaders of "voodoo" in Cotonou, Benin, February 4, 1993, as found in Mr. John Weiskittel's
Voodoo You Trust?)
This is apostasy. No true pope has ever spoken in such a way of voodoo or given public esteem to a false religion. Feeling compelled to kiss the Koran when presented before him would have come as a natural response to Wojtyla/John Paul II, who would sit as an equal with the grand rabbi of the Talmudists and a Mohammedan imam in Jerusalem on March 25, 2000. The imam, though, had the personal integrity to leave during the ceremony as he recognize that he was giving public credibility to what he considered to be two false religions, something that Wojtyla/John Paul II did consistently throughout his false "pontificate." The soon-to "beatified" "pontiff" repeatedly committed actions and uttered words that demonstrated that he had defected from the Faith and had zero love for God as He has made Himself clear to us through His Catholic Church, thinking nothing of deconstructing the First and Second Commandments as he offered words of praise on other occasions the likes of the Protestant syncretist, Roger Schutz, at the Taize "Ecumenical" Community in France in October of 1986 and at footnote fifty it Ut Unum Sint, May 25, 1995, to the late Abbe Paul Couturier of the Order of Saint Irenaeus for being the father of a "spiritual ecumenism" that was specifically condemned by Pope Pius XI in Mortalium Animos, January 6, 1928. Readers of this site know that Abbe Paul Couturier was a disciple of the late pantheist named Father Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, S. J. (see Ever Faithful To His Infidelity.)
This is all without precedent in the history of the Catholic Church.
Where is the precedent for "joint blessings" with the "clergy" of false religions? What true pope has done so in the history of the Catholic Church prior to the death of Pope Pius XII on October 9, 1958? That which is blasphemous and apostate of its nature does not become "good" and "true" simply because men claiming to be "popes" since then have done such things repeatedly. Evil acts do not become "good" and "commendable" because they persist over a long period of time. Evil acts do not become less offensive to God because most people in the world, including most Catholics alive today, consider such evil actions to be "good" because the men who committed them were said to be "well-intentioned."
That last time I looked, Dr. Moynihan, these were the words of the First Commandment given by God to Moses on Mount Sinai and entrusted in the New Dispensation of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ exclusively to the Catholic Church for its eternal safekeeping and infallible explication:
I am the LORD thy God: thou shalt not have strange Gods before me.
The First Commandment, Dr. Moynihan, forbid any kind of public esteem given to any false religion or its idols at any time for any reason. This is just a basic part of the Catholic Faith from which no one may dissent and remain in good standing within the maternal bosom of Holy Church. No one one dies without having publicly abjured and repented of such actions can enter Heaven immediately upon death, no less to be considered as a candidate for beatification and canonization by the Catholic Church.
Thus it is that Dr. Robert Moynihan should look at his own article for an example of rank, abject superficiality and emotionalism as it is nothing other than a exercise in outright positivism and delusional imaginings that have absolutely nothing to do with the greater honor and majesty and glory of God. It is a shameful act of indemnifying a man who promoted the falsehoods of conciliarism (the new ecclesiology, Modernist propositions about the nature of dogmatic truth that have been condemned by the authority of the Catholic Church and stands the principle of no-contradiction on its head, religious liberty, false ecumenism, separation of Church and State) and who appointed men as "bishops" who were, putting aside the falsehoods of conciliarism that each promoted with his own zeal and relentlessness, menaces to the spiritual and bodily well-being of the souls who had been entrusted to their care (see Appendix B below for a list of some of these spiritual and moral criminals).
Even if Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II had not defected from the Catholic Faith, you see, his dereliction of duty with respect the appoint and the protection of moral criminals, some of whom he protected and promoted, would disqualify him from any legitimate Catholic cause for canonization as no amount of alleged personal piety can be heralded when the candidate has been so callously indifferent to the eternal and temporal welfare of the souls ruined to the point of being driven out of any vestige of the Catholic Faith whatsoever by these moral criminals masquerading as Catholic bishops. Such dereliction of duty has nothing to do with personal sanctity as one who is truly holy must fulfill the duties of his state-in-life, and a man who believes himself to be, albeit falsely, the Vicar of Christ on earth has a frightful responsibility to fulfill that cannot be dismissed as irrelevant in any consideration of his qualifications for beatification and canonization (see Celebrating Apostasy and Dereliction of Duty).
Dr. Moynihan's effort to justify Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II's show of "respect" for the Koran, believing that it might not have been a "kiss" after all (William Jefferson Blythe Clinton, call your office), makes much reference to what he imagines to have been the false "pontiff's" desire to maintain "peace" in the Middle East and elsewhere. Gee, that worked so well, huh? What happened on September 11, 2001? An inter-religious prayer service?
What shallowness and irresponsibility.
"Peace" could have kept by the over thirteen million martyrs of the Catholic Church, put to death at various points by Roman emperors if they had but shown just a small token of respect for the false gods of Rome. Just a small token. Just a little kiss. Just a few grains of incense. That's all it would have taken. That's all.
As we know, however, the first thirteen million martyrs of the Catholic Church between the time of Emperor Nero in 67 A.D. and the Edict of Milan issued by Emperor Constantine in the year 313 A.D.
Quite unlike the theoretician and practitioner of false ecumenism who is soon to be "beatified," our last true pope thus far, Pope Pius XII, reminded Italian lawyers in December 6, 1953, that Catholic blood flowed in Rome as martyrs preferred death to life and a false "peace" rather than to give even the appearance of esteeming a false religion and/or its idols:
Her deportment has not changed in the course of history, nor can
it change whenever or wherever, under the most diversified forms, she
is confronted with the choice: either incense for idols or blood for
Christ. The place where you are now present, Eternal Rome, with the
remains of a greatness that was and with the glorious memories of its
martyrs, is the most eloquent witness to the answer of the Church.
Incense was not burned before the idols, and Christian blood flowed and
consecrated the ground. But the temples of the gods lie in the cold
devastation of ruins howsoever majestic; while at the tombs of the
martyrs the faithful of all nations and all tongues fervently repeat the
ancient Creed of the Apostles. (Pope Pius XII, Ci Riesce, December 6, 1953; see Appendix C below for the full context of this quotation from Ci Riesce.)
Father Basil Meramo, who was expelled from the Society of Saint Pius X in 2009 for opposing Bishop Bernard Fellay's overtures to Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI, explained that it was the policy of the Roman emperors to permit the peoples they conquered to retain belief in their own false gods, each of whom would have a representation in the Pantheon. Father Meramo said that this is precisely what the conciliar officials have been doing for over four decades now:
This problem is taking place with the General Superior (of the Society of St. Pius X) (…) who
is selling out the Society by allying himself with the Vatican, which
has not stepped back in anything. Where does Benedict XVI go? He goes to
the Synagogue, he goes to the United Nations, and now he goes to the
Society (SSPX) – another concubine in the pantheon of false religions.
This is not admissible. This is a tactic of Rome. I want you to know, dear brethren, that
Rome of the Roman Empire was able to dominate the world by means of
religious compromises. This is why Rome had a pantheon with all the
principal gods of the important peoples who were subjugated by it. Since
religious alliances were established and Rome had the same gods of the
enemies, then there were no mutual attacks. Rome accepted the same gods
of the Greeks in order to dominate the Greeks; Rome adopted the same
gods of this or that people in order to dominate them. This was its
tactic to govern.
This same tactic continues today in that Rome, which St. Peter - the first Pope of the Church - called Babylon. He
was not in the Middle East; he was in Rome and he called it Babylon
because it was the Babylon of the religions. He didn’t spare words,
because it had an altar to every god. All known religions had their
representatives there. (…) A Pope quoted in the Breviary – whose name I
don't remember at this moment – said that at the end [of history] Rome
will again have, as in the beginning, all the religions. It will return
to its ancient paganism, rejoicing in hosting all religions. It will
return to its old religious prostitution. (A Bold Show of Dissatisfaction in the SSPX Ranks;
please read Father Meramo's remarks in their entirety; the Tradition in
Action website has also published and English translation of Father
Meramo's January 26, 2009, "open letter" to Bishop Fellay, Fellay’s Decision to Merge Confronted by Intellectual Priest. These letters have been censored by the Society of Saint Pius X hierarchy.)
Those who have the eyes of the true Faith to recognize and to accept Father Meramo's profound insights will do so. Others, such as Dr. Robert Moynihan, will attempt to project into the mind of the late Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II what he "meant" to do when showing that sign of "respect" for the Koran. Similar excuses for the sins of Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI against the First and Second Commandment in this regard have been made repeatedly throughout the course of a "pontificate" that reached its sixth anniversary yesterday, including when he stepped foot into a mosque in Istanbul, Turkey, on November 30, 2006, and took off his shoes so as to signify that he was in a "holy" place and assumed the Mohammedan prayer position at the behest of Mohammedan host, turning in the direction of Mecca to pray. Defenders of all things Benedict said that the current false "pontiff" just "had" to do this as he wanted to prevent violence in the Middle East although there has been nothing but unremitting violence against Catholics in various parts of that region, including in Iraq and Egypt. Undaunted by the refusal of Mohammedans to take his call for "religious liberty" seriously, Ratzinger/Benedict decided to call for his Assisi III meeting as a means of producing "understanding" (see (Another Year of the Same Conciliar Apostasy, part one, Another Year of the Same Conciliar Apostasy, part two, Another Year of the Same Conciliar Apostasy, part three, Bearing "Fruits" From Hell Itself, part one, Bearing "Fruits" From Hell Itself, part 2, Not Interested in Assisi III, Grand Illusions, More Serendipity From the "Religion of Peace and Celebrating Apostasy and Dereliction of Duty) among religions as a result of the carnage that took place at a Chaldean Rite Catholic church in Iraq on All Saints Day, November 1, 2010. If insanity can be termed as doing the same thing over and over and over again while expecting different results, behold the insanity of the conciliar "popes," including Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II and Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI.
Dr. Robert Moynihan's wild ruminations included his claim that Wojtyla/John Paul wanted to "invite" members of Mohammedanism into the Faith by his sign of "respect" for the blasphemous Koran. Carnac the Magnificent, call your office, please, as it appears that Dr. Moynihan has uncovered "answers" to explain away this reprehensible act on the part of the soon-to-beatified John Paul II that have been kept in Carnac's hermetically sealed mayonnaise jar on Funk and Wagnall's front porch.
Admitting that there were times now and again that Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II mentioned Our Lord in passing when speaking to representatives of "other" religions, those that deny His Sacred Divinity, more frequent, however, were the following examples of referring to God in a generic sense while praising adherents of those false religions for "following" God even in those instances when he mentioned the Holy Name of Our Lord Jesus Christ to them.
The presence here today of members of the Hindu community gives me great pleasure. In visiting the people of Kenya, I am happy to become acquainted with all those who live in this land and have a part in the life of this nation.
Your own roots are found in the venerable history of Asia, for which I have much respect and esteem. In greeting you I willingly recall the fact that the Second Vatican Council, in its Declaration “Nostra Aetate” manifested the fraternal attitude of the whole Catholic Church to non-Christian religions. In this she showed her task of fostering unity and love among individuals and nations and her commitment to advance fellowship among all human beings. Special reference in the document was made to Hinduism and to the religious values embraced by its followers.
And today the Catholic Church is willingly associated with all her brethren in a dialogue on the mystery of man and the mystery of God. The purpose of life, the nature of good, the path to happiness, the meaning of death and the end of our human journey - all these truths form the object of our common service of man in his many needs, and to the promotion of his full human dignity.
And under the sign of this human dignity and brotherhood I greet you today with sincerity and fraternal love. (To the members of the Hindu community, Nairobi, Kenya, May 7, 1980.)
Under the "sign of this human dignity and brotherhood I greet you today with sincerity and fraternal love"? That's a little different than the Sign of the Cross. The Catholic Church has nothing to "learn" from members of a false religion about the "mystery of man and the mystery of God." She has the totality of Divine Revelation and stands in no need of having to enter in a "dialogue on the mystery of man and the mystery of God" with people whom Saint Francis Xavier simply exhorted to convert unconditionally to the true Faith.
Wojtyla/John Paul II's address to Muslims in Ghana a day later was redolent of "respect" for this false religion, which blasphemes Our Lord by denying His Sacred Divinity and calling him but a mere "prophet," as he spoke in Judeo-Masonic terms advancing the "great cause of human dignity be advanced through our fraternal solidarity and friendship:"
At this time I wish to express my respect for the Muslim representatives present here. Through you I send my cordial greetings to the entire Muslim community throughout Ghana.
During my recent visit to Turkey I had the occasion to speak special words of friendship for my Islamic brothers and sisters. My words were the expression of a contact that was fostered by the Second Vatican Council, and that found an important reference in the memorable Message to Africa of Paul VI in 1967. On that occasion he stated: "We also wish to express our esteem for all the followers of Islam living in Africa, who have principles in common with Christianity, which give us glad hope of an effective dialogue. Meanwhile, we express our wish that Muslims and Christians live as neighbours mutual respect will be constantly present in social life also, and common action to promote the acceptance and the defence of man’s fundamental rights"
Yes, mutual respect based on mutual understanding and directed to the joint service of humanity is a great contribution to the world.
Hence today I renew my own sentiments of esteem and those of the whole Catholic Church for the Muslims of Ghana and of all Africa, praying that the Almighty and Merciful God will grant peace and brotherhood to all the members of the human family. And may the harmony of creation and the great cause of human dignity be advanced through our fraternal solidarity and friendship. (To the Muslim Leaders of Ghana, Accra, May 8, 1980.)
No mention of the Most Holy Trinity, Whose very existence was rejected by the violent false prophet named Mohammed, in this address. Just an invitation that the "Almighty and Merciful God will grant peace and brotherhood to all the members of the human family." Ratzinger/Benedict spoke in similar terms during his pilgrimage in May of 2009 last month to Jordan and Israel, referring to a mosque in Jordan as a "jewel" and the mosque of the Dome of Rock in Jerusalem as "sacred," utter blasphemies in the sight of the Most Holy Trinity (see
"When He Cometh, Shall He Find, Think You, Faith on Earth?").
Wojtyla/John Paul II referred to his much-mocked "civilization of love" when he gave the following address to Mohammedans in Nigeria in 1982, invoking once again the 'Almighty and Merciful God" so as not to offend his Mohammedan listeners:
This speech, this text, was intended for Muslim religious leaders. I am now addressing the same words to you, who are representing the whole population of Kaduna State, and especially the Muslim population.
1. I am happy to have this encounter with you, the Muslim religious leaders in Nigeria. I warmly greet you and through you I send my greetings to the many millions of Muslims of this great country. I have come to Nigeria to visit my brothers and sisters of the Catholic Church, but my journey would be incomplete without this meeting. Be assured therefore that I am very pleased at this opportunity to express to you my sentiments of fraternal respect and esteem.
2. All of us, Christians and Muslims, live under the sun of the one merciful God.
We both believe in one God who is the Creator of Man. We acclaim God’s sovereignty and we defend man’s dignity as God’s servant. We adore God and profess total submission to him. Thus, in a true sense, we can call one another brothers and sisters in faith in the one God. And we are grateful for this faith, since without God the life of man would be like the heavens without the sun.
Because of this faith that we have in God, Christianity and Islam have many things in common: the privilege of prayer, the duty of justice accompanied by compassion and almsgiving, and above all a sacred respect for the dignity of man, which is at the foundation of the basic rights of every human being, including the right to life of the unborn child.
We Christians have received from Jesus, our Lord and Master, the fundamental law of love of God and love of neighbour. I know that this law of love has a profound echo in your hearts too, for in your sacred book, together with the invitation to faith, you are exhorted to excel in good works (cf. Sura 5,51).
3. In the world today there are many dangers which threaten the family, that precious nucleus of society wherein each human life begins and develops. I would assure you that Christians have a special concern for the family, for its unity, enrichment and protection. I speak of this concern with you because I am confident that you too are aware of the importance of the values of the family and wish to cooperate with Christians in efforts aimed at strengthening and supporting family life.
Permit me to mention some additional areas where Christians and Muslims can cooperate more.
We can engage in dialogue, in order to understand each other better at both the level of the scholars and in person-to-person relationships, in the family and in places of work and play.
We can promote more honesty and discipline in private and public life, greater courage and wisdom in politics, the elimination of political antagonisms, and the removal of discrimination because of a person’s race, colour, ethnic origin, religion or sex.
Both of us can spearhead the principle and practice of religious freedom, ensuring its application especially in the religious education of children. When the right of each child to worship God is complemented by his or her right to religious education, then all society is enriched and its members are well equipped for life. Religious education takes on increased importance today, since certain elements in society seek to forget and even to destroy the spiritual aspect of man.
4. Why do I speak of these issues with you? Because you are Muslims, and like us Christians, you believe in the one God who is the source of all the rights and values of mankind. Furthermore I am convinced that if we join hands in the name of God we can accomplish much good. We can work together for harmony and national unity, in sincerity and greater mutual confidence. We can collaborate in the promotion of justice, peace and development. It is my earnest hope that our solidarity of brotherhood, under God, will truly enhance the future of Nigeria and all Africa, and add to the good ordering of the world as a universal civilization of love.
May the Almighty and Merciful God turn his face towards you and bless you. May he guide you. May he fill you with his peace and give joy to your hearts. ( To the Muslim religious leaders, Kaduna, Nigeria, February 14, 1982.)
"Thus, in a true sense, we can call one another brothers and sisters in faith in the one God. And we are grateful for this faith, since without God the life of man would be like the heavens without the sun"? Faith in the one God? This is what Pope Leo XIII said was necessary for people to share the same Faith in true God of Revelation, whose contents belong exclusively to the Catholic Church and to no false religion whatsoever:
Agreement and union of minds is the necessary foundation of this perfect concord amongst men, from which concurrence of wills and similarity of action are the natural results. Wherefore, in His divine wisdom, He ordained in His Church Unity of Faith; a virtue which is the first of those bonds which unite man to God, and whence we receive the name of the faithful - "one Lord, one faith, one baptism" (Eph. iv., 5). That is, as there is one Lord and one baptism, so should all Christians, without exception, have but one faith. And so the Apostle St. Paul not merely begs, but entreats and implores Christians to be all of the same mind, and to avoid difference of opinions: "I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no schisms amongst you, and that you be perfect in the same mind and in the same judgment" (I Cor. i., 10). Such passages certainly need no interpreter; they speak clearly enough for themselves. Besides, all who profess Christianity allow that there can be but one faith. It is of the greatest importance and indeed of absolute necessity, as to which many are deceived, that the nature and character of this unity should be recognized. And, as We have already stated, this is not to be ascertained by conjecture, but by the certain knowledge of what was done; that is by seeking for and ascertaining what kind of unity in faith has been commanded by Jesus Christ. (Pope Leo XIII, Satis Cognitum, June 29, 1896.)
Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II was an apostate. I was too blinded by the times that he sounded like a Catholic to recognize the fact that no one who spoke as he did before non-Catholics could remain a member of the Catholic Church in good standing. I had simply refused to take seriously these words of Pope Leo XIII, contained in the afore-cited Satis Cognitum, Number 9:
The Church, founded on these principles and mindful of her office, has done nothing with greater zeal and endeavour than she has displayed in guarding the integrity of the faith. Hence she regarded as rebels and expelled from the ranks of her children all who held beliefs on any point of doctrine different from her own. The Arians, the Montanists, the Novatians, the Quartodecimans, the Eutychians, did not certainly reject all Catholic doctrine: they abandoned only a certain portion of it. Still who does not know that they were declared heretics and banished from the bosom of the Church? In like manner were condemned all authors of heretical tenets who followed them in subsequent ages. "There can be nothing more dangerous than those heretics who admit nearly the whole cycle of doctrine, and yet by one word, as with a drop of poison, infect the real and simple faith taught by our Lord and handed down by Apostolic tradition" (Auctor Tract. de Fide Orthodoxa contra Arianos).
The practice of the Church has always been the same, as is shown by the unanimous teaching of the Fathers, who were wont to hold as outside Catholic communion, and alien to the Church, whoever would recede in the least degree from any point of doctrine proposed by her authoritative Magisterium. Epiphanius, Augustine, Theodore :, drew up a long list of the heresies of their times. St. Augustine notes that other heresies may spring up, to a single one of which, should any one give his assent, he is by the very fact cut off from Catholic unity. "No one who merely disbelieves in all (these heresies) can for that reason regard himself as a Catholic or call himself one. For there may be or may arise some other heresies, which are not set out in this work of ours, and, if any one holds to one single one of these he is not a Catholic" (S. Augustinus, De Haeresibus, n. 88). (Pope Leo XIII, Satis Cognitum, June 29, 1896.)
Although Appendix D will provide other examples of Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II's respect for false religions at the end of the brief Litany of Saints that is included at the end of each of the articles on this site, one other example will suffice before examining two of Wojtyla/John Paul II's and Ratzinger/Benedict's addresses at Talmudic synagogues.
Wojtyla/John Paul II's embrace of the falsehood of "inter-religious" dialogue, of which he was an important "founding father" (see
"Connecting" with Betrayal and
"Thumbs Up" From a Communist for an Apostate), was on full display in his 1984 journey to the Republic of Korea (South Korea). His address to members of non-Christian religions made reference to Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ while expressing his "high esteem" of the "admirable traditions" represented by false religions that deny Our Lord's Sacred Divinity. He also appeased the Buddhists in attendance by referring to the "Lord Buddha," something that no true Successor of Saint Peter had ever dared to do before he, an imposter on the Throne of Saint Peter, spoke so blasphemously:
In preparing to come to Korea I looked forward with particular expectation to this meeting with you, spiritual leaders in this venerable land.
You are aware that the chief reason for my visit is the responsibility that has been entrusted to me of guiding and confirming the faith of the followers of Jesus Christ who are members of the Catholic Church. But I wanted also to express to you my high esteem of the millennia of precious cultural heritage and admirable traditions of which you are the guardians and living witnesses. Thank you for giving me this opportunity by your presence today.
1. The Catholic Church is endeavouring to engage in friendly dialogue with all the great religions that have guided mankind throughout history. This we shall continue to do, so that our mutual understanding and collaboration may increase, and so that the spiritual and moral values we uphold may continue to offer wisdom and inner strength to the men and women of our time.
In fact, religions today have a more than ever vital role to play in a society in rapid evolution such as Korea. In a sense, just as the individual must find his true self by transcending himself and strive to achieve harmony with the universe and with others, so too must a society, a culture, the community of human beings, seek to foster the spiritual values that are its soul. And this imperative is all the more urgent, the deeper the changes that affect life today.
2. In this regard, the world looks to Korea with particular interest. For the Korean people throughout history have sought, in the great ethical and religious visions of Buddhism and Confucianism, the path to the renewal of self and to the consolidation of the whole people in virtue and in nobility of purpose. The profound reverence for life and nature, the quest for truth and harmony, self-abnegation and compassion, the ceaseless striving to transcend - these are among the noble hallmarks of your spiritual tradition that have led, and will continue to lead, the nation and the people through turbulent times to the haven of peace.
Our diversity in religious and ethical beliefs calls upon all of us to foster genuine fraternal dialogue and to give special consideration to what human beings have in common and to what promotes fellowship among them (Cf. Nostra Aetate, 1). Such concerted effort will certainly create a climate of peace in which justice and compassion can flourish.
3. We Catholics have just celebrated the Jubilee Year of the Redemption. In that period of grace we have endeavoured to live the gift of reconciliation granted us in Christ and have made efforts to reconcile ourselves with God and with our fellow man. Would it not be a good thing indeed, if also between believers of different traditions and between religions themselves a similar meeting of minds and hearts could be realized by our common good will and our duty to serve the human family’s well-being?
When the Catholic Church proclaims Jesus Christ and enters into dialogue with believers of other religions, she does so in order to bear witness to his love for all people of all times - a love that was manifested on the Cross for the reconciliation and salvation of the world. It is in this spirit that the Church seeks to promote deeper fellowship with all peoples and religions.
4. May I address a particular greeting to the members of the Buddhist tradition as they prepare to celebrate the festivity of the Coming of the Lord Buddha? May your rejoicing be complete and your joy fulfilled.
I renew to you my sincere sentiments of esteem and good will. May we all be enlightened for the wise accomplishment of the grave responsibilities that are ours. Thank you. ( To spiritual leaders of non-Christian religious communities, May 6, 1984.)
Yes, the "pope" who was "devoted" to Our Lady's Psalter, which he dared to change, the "pope" who could sound so Catholic in front of Catholic audiences, the "pope" who spoke sternly to the American "bishops" in 1979 and 1987 and during several of their quinquennial or ad limina apostolorum visits to the Vatican, tripped all over himself when promoting conciliarism's respect for false religions, each of which is hated by God, as refused to seek with urgency the unconditional conversion of non-Catholics to the true Church. Along with his equally apostate "successor" in the conciliar structures, Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI, Wojtyla/John Paul II gave esteem and respect to "religions" that are from the devil and that can never be the source of personal sanctification or salvation and which are, of course, actual hindrances to the pursuit of the common temporal good as it must be undertaken in light of man's Last End: the possession of the glory of the Beatific Vision of God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Ghost for all eternity in Heaven.
Yes, it should be noted as a matter of intellectual honesty that Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II was more forthright in at least mentioning the Holy Name of the Divine Redeemer, Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, before non-Catholics than has been his successor, Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI. That the late conciliar "pontiff" gave any esteem at all to false religions, no less spoke about "respecting" different "religious traditions," speaks of apostate behavior that is simply not consonant with being a member of the Catholic Church in good standing. No true pope of the Catholic Church has ever spoken or act as these conciliar "apostates" have spoken or acted. All protestations to the contrary, Wojtyla/John Paul II and Ratzinger/Benedict have spoken and acted as though they pretty much agree with their mentor Hans Urs von Balthasar's falsehood of "universal salvation."
This was no way, Dr. Moynihan, to "invite" non-Catholics into the Church. This was not the way of Saint Francis of Assisi when seeking the conversion of the Mohammedans. And it was not the way of Saint Francis Xavier when seeking the conversion of the pagans in India and Japan.
Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II would be disqualified from "beatification" and "canonization" by the Catholic Church solely on the grounds of his false doctrine and apostate pastoral praxis.
Indeed, perhaps far more damning for the "cause" of Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II than his kissing the Koran was his ready willingness to remove the very Sign of our salvation, the Sign of the Cross, at various times and in various places where adherents of the Talmud might have or were in fact offended. The false "pontiff" removed his pectoral cross (remember, he was a true bishop) on April 7, 1994, at the Paul VI Audience Hall as he hosted a concert in honor of the Talmudic victims of the Nazi regime. He did more than that, however: he removed a crucifix from the Paul VI Audience Hall. This has nothing to do with fidelity to the Christ King, who won our salvation for us on the wood of the Holy Cross. That concert was "the first time the Chief Rabbi of Rome was invited
to co-officiate at a public function in the Vatican, the first time a
Jewish cantor sang at the Vatican, and the first time the Vatican choir
sang a Hebrew text in performance" (The Vatican, the Holocaust, and the Jews: 1945-2000, a Talmudic source for this; see also: CHRONICLE - The New York Times and YOM HASHOAH, another Talmudic source for the "concert").
Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II did this again in 1998 when he requested Carmelite nuns in Poland to remove a large cross that they had erected near the Auschwitz concentration camp and death center where Father Maximilian Kolbe, who hated false ecumenism, was put to death. The false "pontiff" did this because Talmudists were "offended."
Yes, I contend, Dr. Moynihan, that such acts of rank cowardice are indeed more damning to Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II's cause than what could have been an inadvertent kiss of the Koran made out of an ecumenical impulse as to remove the very sign of our salvation, the Sign of the Cross, in order to appease the ancient enemies of Christ the King and His Holy Church, is to betray the Divine Redeemer just as much as Judas Iscariot, who, at least, got paid for his betrayal.
Once again, the "cause" of Wojtyla/John Paul II is absurd to begin with as it is being advance by apostates who have defected from the Faith just as much as he did.
As I have noted so many times on this site, those who remain indifferent to or accepting of blasphemies and sacrileges committed against the honor and glory and majesty of God can no longer call themselves Catholics:
But it is vain for them to adopt the name of catholic, as they do not oppose these blasphemies: they must believe them, if they can listen so patiently to such words. (Pope Saint Leo the Great, Epistle XIV, To Anastasius, Bishop of Thessalonica, St. Leo the Great | Letters 1-59 )
I was indifferent to the blasphemies of Wojtyla/John Paul II for far too long. I was fooled by the fact that the late conciliar "pontiff" spoke as a Catholic to Catholics on many occasions. Shame on me for being so blind.
We know more now, do we not? We see God being offended regularly by these conciliar "popes" who deny the nature of dogmatic truth and believe in other condemned propositions that have been critiqued on this site time and time again. How can we remain attached to men who defy the anathemas of the Catholic Church repeatedly as they offend the Most Holy Trinity so grievously?
The Catholics in Alexandria held steadfast to the true Faith for a long time in the midst of one persecution after another than was waged against them by the Arian bishops and their protectors in the Roman Empire, including Emperor Constantius II and Emperor Julian the Apostate:
It was indeed the hour of darkness, and it seemed as if the powers of evil were let loose upon the world. The Arians, with the Emperor on their side, were carrying everything before them. Nearly all the Bishops who had uphold the Nicene faith were in exile or in prison.
St. Antony, over a hundred years old, was on his deathbed. His monks, crowding around the dying Saint, groaned over the evil days that had befallen the Church.
"Fear not," replied the old man, "for this power is of the earth and cannot last. As for the sufferings of the Church, was it not so from the beginning, and will it not be so until the end? Did not the Master Himself say, 'They have persecuted Me, they will persecute you also'? Did not the 'perils from the fallen brethren' begin even even in the lifetime of those who had been the companions of Christ? And yet, did not the Master Himself promise that, although she must live in the midst of persecution, He would be with His Church forever and that the gates of Hell should not prevail against her?"
With these words of hope and comfort on his lips, St. Antony passed to his reward, and they laid him in his lonely desert grave. His coat of sheepskin, given by Athanasius long years before, he sent with his dying blessing to the Patriarch, who cherished it as his most precious possession.
The Alexandrians had not given in without a struggle. They had protested openly against the violence of Syrianus, proclaiming throughout the city that Athanasius was their true Patriarch and that they would never acknowledge another. It was of no use; a new reign of terror began in which all who refused to accept the Arian creed were treated as criminals. Men and women were seized and scourged; some were slain. Athanasius was denounced as a "runaway, an evildoer, a cheat and an impostor, deserving of death." Letters came from the Emperor ordering all the churches in the city to be given up to the Arians and requiring the people to receive without objections the new Patriarch whom he would shortly send them.
As time went on, things grew worse. The churches were invaded; altars, vestments and books were burned and incense thrown on the flames. An ox was sacrificed in the sanctuary; priests, monks and nuns were seized and tortured; the houses of the faithful were broken into and robbed. Bishops were driven into exile and their sees filled by Arians, those who were ready to give the most money being generally chosen. Some of them were even pagans; the people were ready to bear any sufferings rather than hold communion with them. (Mother Frances Alice Monica Forbes, Saint Athanasius, reprinted by TAN Books and Publishers, pp. 64-66.)
Why are we so willing to hold communion with the heretics and blasphemers of today? Why are so willing to hold communion with those who are indifferent to the heretics and blasphemers of today?
Ah, some might retort, Arianism had been condemned by the Fathers of the Council of Nicaea. True enough. Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI's views of dogmatic truth have been condemned and anathematized solemnly by the [First] Vatican Council and by Pope Saint Pius X in Pascendi Dominici Gregis, September 8, 1907, and in The Oath Against Modernism, September 1, 1910, and by Pope Pius XII in Humani Generis, August 12, 1950. His views on Sacred Scripture and against Scholasticism and in favor of the new ecclesiology and false ecumenism and inter-religious dialogue and inter-religious "prayer" and religious liberty and separation of Church and State have been condemned by the authority of the Catholic Church (see
Ratzinger's War Against Catholicism). We just need to ask open our eyes and to see the plain truth that is staring us right in the face.
To this end, of course, we need Our Lady's help. We honor Our Lady today as the Mediatrix of All Graces. It is through her loving hands that the graces won for us by her Divine Son on the wood of the Holy Cross in obedience to God the Father and that are made present in the Sacraments by the working of God the Holy Ghost flow into our own hearts and souls. She, the great foe of heresy, will help us to recognize the plain truth that the jaws of Hell have indeed prevailed against the Church if true and legitimate Successors of Saint Peter can deny Catholic doctrine openly and publicly as they hold give public expression to private views that expelled them from the Church long before their apparent "election." And she will help us to have the courage to cleave exclusively only to those true bishops and true priests in the Catholic catacombs who make no concessions to conciliarism or its blaspheming apostates posing as "popes" and "bishops."
Once again, we need to take heart from the example of Saint Servatus:
Servatus held the bishopric of Tongres (Belgium) at a time when the whole of Christendom had Arian tendencies. The all-powerful emperor, Constantius, was a heretic and supported the heresy; many bishops no longer believed in the divinity of Our Lord; St. Athanasius and St. Hilary, great champions of orthodoxy, were in exile.
The story of the Jewish origins of St. Servatus and his kinship with St. Anne appears legendary. It is not known when he became bishop of Tongres, but by 336, when St. Athanasius spent his exile at Trier, he had already occupied the see. The declaration which he made before the Council of Cologne in 346 informs us both of his meeting with the celebrated Alexandrian doctor and of his own orthodoxy. This is what he says in reference to the bishop of Cologne, deposed on that occasion: "It is not from hearsay that I know what he has been teaching, but from having myself heard it. Our churches are adjacent; many times I have had occasion to contradict him, when he has denied the divinity of Jesus Christ. It has happened in the presence of Athanasius, bishop of Alexandria. .. . I judge that he can no longer be bishop of Christians; and those do not deserve to be considered Christians who remain in communion with him."
After failing in his efforts to reconcile the usurper, Magnetius, with the Emperor Constantius, Servatus made a pilgrimage to Rome. He returned convinced that Tongres would soon fall to the Huns. Hastily he carried the relics of the church to Maestricht, and there, shortly afterwards, he died. The towns of Tongres remained thereafter for nearly a century without a bishop. (Omer Engelbert, The Lives of the Saints, Barnes and Noble, p. 186.)
Even a now deceased conciliar official conceded in 2005 what many in the "resist and recognize" movement, including those in the Society of Saint Pius X, refuse to concede even in principle as being true, no less that this truth applies in these our days, namely, that the See of Peter is indeed vacant in cases of heresy:
It is true that the canonical doctrine states that the see would be vacant in the case of heresy. ... But in regard to all else, I think what is applicable is what judgment regulates human acts. And the act of will, namely a resignation or capacity to govern or not govern, is a human act. (Cardinal Says Pope Could Govern Even If Unable to Speak, Zenit, February 8, 2005; for an explanation of how a long papal vacancy is not excluded by the doctrine of perpetual successors of Saint Peter, please see, Father Martin Stepanich, O.F.M., S.T.D.,
An Objection to Sedevacantism: 'Perpetual Successors' to Peter.)
Holy Mother Church, our spotless, immaculate mother on earth, cannot give us even any teaching with "even a light tarnish of error." We are in the midst of the "operation of error," awash with apostasy and blasphemy that can never be given us by Holy Mother Church, which is why we must be pray for our true bishops and priests so that they will be remain as faithful as Saint Athanasius and that we will remain steadfast in our knowledge that we have the Faith while the blaspheming apostates have the church buildings and other church properties.
In the midst of the "respect" shown for false religions by the conciliar "pontiffs," men who never invoke the doctrine of the Most Holy Trinity in their appearances before non-Catholics, who most need to hear exhortations to convert to the true Faith before they die, it is good to once again take note of Pope Leo XIII;s words in Custodi di Quella Fede, December 8, 1892, and to recognize that they condemn the life work of Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II and Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI:
Everyone should avoid familiarity or friendship with anyone suspected of belonging to masonry or to affiliated groups. Know them by their fruits and avoid them. Every familiarity should be avoided, not only with those impious libertines who openly promote the character of the sect, but also with those who hide under the mask of universal tolerance, respect for all religions, and the craving to reconcile the maxims of the Gospel with those of the revolution. These men seek to reconcile Christ and Belial, the Church of God and the state without God. (Pope Leo XIII, Custodi di Quella Fede, December 8, 1892.)
Let Dr Robert Moynihan try to refute the work of Father Luigi Villa on the "beatification" of Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II without resorting to positivism and emotionalism. Here is the link once again to Father Villa's work, which should not be viewed by the young or those who do not want to be scandalized or otherwise offended by the graphic images of the terrible sacrileges and gross immodesty that Wojtyla/John Paul II countenanced and never corrected at his liturgical extravaganzas: www.padrepioandchiesaviva.com. Let Dr. Moynihan try to refute this evidence. He will be unable to do so.
No, I bear no animus whatsoever for Dr. Moynihan. None whatsoever. I simply love truth and hate error and falsehood. I, a terrible, miserable sinner, just want to defend the honor and majesty and glory of God as He is blasphemed by the conciliar "popes" by words and deeds and spectacles that are without any precedent in the history of the Catholic Church and are indeed the work of the devil himself as God the Holy Ghost can never contradict Himself.
There were those who remonstrated with me publicly, and rightly so, for my own defense of the indefensible as regards the "papacy" of Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II. I remain in their debt. They did me a favor. Their criticism stung at the time, to be sure. However, I knew that I was wrong. I had to reassess what I was doing. It took time. I am, after all, a very, very crooked line. I am dense. It took me a long while to "get it," doing so only the graces that Our Lord sent to me through the loving hands of His Most Blessed Mother, she who is the Mediatrix of All Graces, something that does not make me, who is still quite a crooked line in so many uneven and jagged ways, one bit better than anyone else. My prayer, though, is that others, including Dr. Robert Moynihan, who cannot see or accept the truth of the state of apostasy and betrayal that faces us will do so sooner rather than later. That is all.
A friend of mine, one who has not given me permission to use his name as I have been too busy even to write to him to ask for such permission, wrote to me to say that he was going to kiss his Crucifix as many times as possible this week through the end of Good Friday in reparation for the kiss of Judas that Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II gave to the Koran in 1999. This is an excellent suggestion, one that can be used to make reparation for each of acts of blasphemy and sacrilege committed by the conciliar "popes," including Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI's esteeming of the symbols of five false religions, including the Koran, which he would call a month later "that dear, precious book," at the John Paul Cultural Center in Washington, District of Columbia on Thursday, April 17, 2008, just over three years ago now. The act of reparation proposed by the reader is truly inspired. I encourage each of you to do so yourselves.
Keeping close to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary as we prepare for the celebration of the Paschal Triduum of the Passion, Death and Resurrection of Our Divine Redeemer in but two days from now, may we pray as many Rosaries each day as our states-in-life permit as we continue to offer up all of our prayers and sufferings and sacrifices to that same Sacred Heart through the Immaculate Heart out of which It was formed and with which It beats as one. May it be our privilege to plant a few seeds for the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary as we attempt to make reparation to Jesus through Mary for our sins and those of the whole world
Isn't it time to pray a Rosary now?
Our Lady, Mediatrix of All Graces, pray for us.
Immaculate Heart of Mary, triumph soon!
Vivat Christus Rex! Viva Cristo Rey!
Saint Joseph, pray for us.
Saints Peter and Paul, pray for us.
Saint John the Baptist, pray for us.
Saint John the Evangelist, pray for us.
Saint Michael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Gabriel the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Raphael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saints Joachim and Anne, pray for us.
See also: A Litany of Saints
Bishop George Hay on Communication with Non-Catholics in Religious Matters
GENERAL LAWS OF GOD, FORBIDDING ALL COMMUNICATION
IN RELIGION WITH THOSE OF A FALSE RELIGION
Bishop George Hay (1729-1811)
Q. What are those laws which prohibit this in
A. They are principally these following:
(1) The first is grounded upon the light in
which all false religions are considered in the Holy Scripture; for there we are
assured that they arise from false teachers, who are called seducers of the
people, ravenous wolves, false prophets, who speak perverse things: that they
are anti-Christs, and enemies of the cross of Christ; that, departing from the
true faith of Christ, they give heed to the spirits of error; that their
doctrines are the doctrines of devils, speaking lies; that their ways are
pernicious, their heresies damnable, and the like. In consequence of which, this
general command of avoiding all communication with them in religion is given by
the apostle: "Bear not the yoke together with unbelievers; for what
participation hath justice with injustice? or what fellowship hath light with
darkness? and what concord hath Christ with Belial? Or what part hath the
faithful with the unbelievers? or what agreement hath the temple of God with
idols? For ye are the temple of the living God." (2 Cor. 6:14)
Now it is the true religion of Jesus Christ,
the true doctrine of His gospel, which is justice and light; all false doctrines
are injustice and darkness; it is by our holy faith that we belong to Christ,
and are temples of the living God; all false religions flow from the father of
lies, and make those who embrace them unbelievers; therefore all participation,
all fellowship, all communication with false religions, is here expressly
forbidden by the Word of God. We have seen above 2 that we are obliged to love
the persons of those who are engaged in false religions, to wish them well, and
to do them good; but here we are expressly forbidden all communication in their
religion — that is, in their false tenets, and worship. Hence the learned and
pious English divines who published at Rheims their translation of the New
Testament, in their note upon this passage, say: "Generally, here is forbidden
conversation and dealing with unbelievers in prayers, or meetings at their
schismatical service, or other divine office whatsoever; which the apostle here
uttereth in more particular terms, that Christian people may take the better
heed of it."
(2) The next general command to avoid all
religious communication with those who are heretics, or have a false religion,
is this, — "A man that is a heretic, after the first and second admonition,
AVOID; knowing that he that is such a one is subverted, and sinneth, being
condemned by his own judgment." (Tit. 3:10)
Here we see another general command to avoid
all such — that is, to flee from them, to have no communication with them. But
in what are we commanded to flee from them? Not as to their persons, or the
necessary communications of society; for then, as the same holy apostle says
upon a similar occasion, "You must needs go out of the world."  Cor. 5:10)
Not as to the offices of Christian charity; for these we are commanded by Christ
himself, in the person of the good Samaritan, to give to all mankind, whatever
their religion be: therefore, in the most restricted and limited sense which the
words can bear, the thing in which we are commanded to avoid them is in all
matters of religion; in that in which they themselves are subverted and sin; in
things relating to God and His service. In these they err, in these they are
subverted, in these they are condemned; therefore in these we must avoid them.
Hence the pious translators of the Rheims New
Testament, in their note on this text, say, "Heretics, therefore, must not
wonder if we warn all Catholics, by the words of the apostle in this place, to
take heed of them, and to shun their preachings, books, and conventicles."
(3) A third general command on this subject is
manifestly included in this zealous injunction of the apostle: "We charge you,
brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you withdraw yourselves
from every brother walking disorderly, and not according to the tradition which
they have received from us." (2 Thes. 3:6)
In this passage, all the different sects of
false religions are particularly pointed out; for, however they may differ in
other respects they generally agree in this, of rejecting apostolical traditions
handed down to us by the Church of Christ; all such the apostle here charges us,
in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, to avoid — to withdraw ourselves from
them. Now it is evident that the most limited sense in which this command, so
warmly laid on us by the apostle, can be taken, is to withdraw ourselves from
them in everything relating to religion, — from their sacraments, prayers,
preachings, religious meetings, and the like. It is in these things that they
"do not walk according to the tradition received from the apostles". In these
things, then, we are here commanded, in the name of Christ Himself, "to withdraw
ourselves from them".
Seeing, therefore, that the Holy Ghost, by the
mouth of this holy apostle, has so often, and in such strong terms, forbidden
all manner of fellowship in religion with those who are out of His holy Church,
let us not be deceived by the specious but vain sophistry of cunning men, who
lie in wait to deceive; let us not offend our God, by transgressing these His
express commands, by joining in the prayers or going to the meetings of such as
are separated from His holy Church, lest He should withdraw His holy grace from
US, and as we expose ourselves to the danger, leave us to perish in it.
Let us hear and follow the advice and command
of the same holy apostle: "As therefore ye have received Jesus Christ the Lord,
walk ye in Him; rooted and built up in Him, and confirmed in the faith; as also
ye have learned, abounding in Him in thanksgiving. Beware lest any man impose
upon you by philosophy and vain deceit according to the tradition of men,
according to the rudiments of the world, and not according to Christ." (Col.
2:6) Wherefore, to all those arguments which may be brought from human, worldly,
or interested motives, to induce us to join in or to partake of any religious
duty with those of a false religion, though in appearance only, we ought to
oppose this one, — "God has expressly forbidden it, therefore no human power can
make it lawful."
PARTICULAR LAWS OF GOD FORBIDDING ALL COMMUNICATION
WITH FALSE RELIGIONS, AND ASSIGNING REASONS FOR IT
Q. What are the particular laws on this
A. In the three general commands above
mentioned, God Almighty speaks, by the mouth of His holy apostle, as Lord and
Master, and lays His orders upon us absolutely. In what follows, He unites the
merciful Savior to the Sovereign; and whilst He no less strictly commands us to
avoid all religious communication with those who are separated from His holy
Faith and Church, He at the same time condescends to engage our obedience, by
showing us the strongest reasons for it.
(1) "Beware of false prophets", says our
blessed Master, "who come to you in the clothing of sheep, but inwardly they are
ravening wolves". (Mat. 7:5) Here Jesus Christ commands His followers to "beware
of false prophets" — that is, to flee from them, to be on their guard against
them; and He adds this powerful motive, "Lest ye be seduced and ruined by them";
for, whatever appearance of godliness they may put on, though they come to you
in the clothing of sheep, yet within they are ravenous wolves, and seek only to
slay and to destroy.
To the same purpose He says in another place,
"Take heed that no man seduce you; for many will come in My name, saying, I am
Christ, and they will seduce many." (Mat. 24:4) "And many false prophets shall
arise and seduce many." (ver. 2) Here He foretells the cunning of false
teachers, and the danger of being seduced by them, and commands us to take care
of ourselves, that such be not our fate.
But how shall we escape from them? He
afterwards tells us how: do not believe them, have nothing to do with them, have
no communication, with them. "Then", He says, "if any man shall say, to you, Lo,
here is Christ, or there, do not believe him. For there shall arise false
Christs and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders, insomuch as
to deceive even the elect. Behold. I have told it you beforehand. If therefore,
they shall say to you, Behold he is in the desert, go ye not out; behold he is
in the closet, believe it not." (Mat. 24:23)
Can there be a more powerful reason to enforce
the observance of His command, or a stronger motive to induce His followers to
have no religious communication with such false teachers? Many will be certainly
seduced by them; and so will you, if you expose yourself to the danger.
(2) St. Peter, considering the great mercy
bestowed upon us by the grace of our vocation to the true faith of Christ, says,
that it is our duty to "declare the praises and virtues of Him who hath called
us out of darkness into His admirable light". (1 Pet. 2:9) St. Paul also exhorts
us to "give thanks to God the Father, who hath made us worthy to be partakers of
the lot of the saints in light, who hath delivered us from the power of
darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of His beloved Son." (Col.
1:12) Where it is manifest that as the true Faith of Jesus Christ is the only
light that conducts to salvation, and that it is only in His Kingdom — that is,
in His Church — where that heavenly light is to be found, so all false religions
are darkness; and that to be separated from the Kingdom of Christ is to be in
darkness as to the great affair of eternity. And indeed what greater or more
miserable darkness can a soul be in than to be led away by seducing spirits, and
"departing from the faith of Christ, give heed to the doctrine of devils". (1
Tim. 4:1) St. Paul, deploring the state of such souls, says that they "have
their understandings darkened, being alienated from the life of God, through the
ignorance: that is in them, because of the blindness of their hearts". (Eph.
On this account the same holy apostle exhorts
us in the most pressing manner to take care not to be seduced from the light of
our holy Faith by the vain words and seducing speeches of false teachers, by
which we would certainly incur the anger of God; and, to prevent so great a
misery, He not only exhorts us to walk as children of the light in the practice
of all holy virtues, but expressly commands us to avoid all communication in
religion with those who walk in the darkness of error. "Let no man deceive you
with vain words, for because of these things cometh the anger of God upon the
children of unbelief; be ye not, therefore, partakers with them. For ye were
theretofore darkness; but now light in the Lord; walk ye as the children of the
. . . and have no fellowship with the
unfruitful works of darkness". (Eph. 5:6)
Here, then, we have an express command, not
only not to partake with the unfruitful works of darkness — that is, not to join
in any false religion, or partake of its rites or sacraments — but also, not to
have any fellowship with its professors, not to be present at their meetings or
sermons, or any other of their religious offices, lest we be deceived by them,
and incur the anger of the Almighty, provoke Him to withdraw His assistance from
us, and leave us to ourselves, in punishment of our disobedience.
(3) St. Paul, full of zeal for the good of
souls, and solicitous to preserve us from all danger of losing our holy Faith,
the groundwork of our salvation, renews the same command in his Epistle to the
Romans, by way of entreaty, beseeching us to avoid all such communication with
those of a false religion. He also shows us by what sign we should discover
them, and points out the source of our danger from them: "Now I beseech you,
brethren, to mark them who cause dissensions and offenses contrary to the
doctrine which you have learned, and to avoid them; for they that are such serve
not Our Lord Christ, but their own belly, and by pleasing speeches and good
words seduce the hearts of the innocent". (Rom. 16:17)
See here whom we are to avoid — "those that
cause dissensions contrary to the ancient doctrine"; all those who, hating, left
the true Faith and doctrine which they had learned, and which has been handed
down to us from the beginning by the Church of Christ, follow strange doctrines,
and make divisions and dissensions in the Christian world. And why are we to
avoid them? Because they are not servants of Christ, but slaves to their own
belly, whose hearts are placed upon the enjoyments of this world, and who, by
"pleasing speeches and good words, seduce the hearts of the innocent" — that is,
do not bring good reasons or solid arguments to seduce people to their evil
ways, so as to convince the understanding, for that is impossible; but practice
upon their hearts and passions, relaxing the laws of the gospel, granting
liberties to the inclinations of flesh and blood, laying aside the sacred rules
of mortification of the passions and of self-denial, promising worldly wealth,
and ease, and honors, and, by pleasing speeches of this kind, seducing the
heart, and engaging people to their ways.
(4) The same argument and command the apostle
repeats in his epistle to his beloved disciple Timothy, where he gives a sad
picture, indeed, of all false teachers, telling us that they put on an outward
show of piety the better to deceive, "having an appearance, indeed, of
godliness, but denying the power thereof;" then he immediately gives this
command: "Now these avoid: for of this sort are they that creep into houses, and
lead captive silly women laden with sins, who are led away with divers desires";
and adds this sign by which they may be known, that, not having the true Faith
of Christ, and being out of His holy Church — the only sure rule for knowing the
truth — they are never settled, but are always altering and changing their
opinions, "ever learning, and never attaining to the knowledge of the truth";
because, as he adds, "they resist the truth, being corrupted in their mind, and
reprobate concerning the Faith". (2 Tim. 3:5)
Here it is to be observed that, though the
apostle says that silly weak people, and especially women, are most apt to be
deceived by such false teachers, yet he gives the command of avoiding all
communication with them in their evil ways, to all without exception, even to
Timothy himself; for the epistle is directed particularly to him, and to him he
says, as well as to all others, "Now these avoid", though he was a pastor of the
church, and fully instructed by the apostle himself in all the truths of
religion; because, besides the danger of seduction, which none can escape who
voluntarily expose themselves to it, all such communication is evil in itself,
and therefore to be avoided by all, and especially by pastors, whose example
would be more prejudicial to others.
(5) Lastly, the beloved disciple St. John
renews the same command in the strongest terms, and adds another reason, which
regards all without exception, and especially those who are best instructed in
their duty: "Look to yourselves", says he, "that ye lose not the things that ye
have wrought, but that you may receive a full reward. Whosoever revolteth, and
continueth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that continueth in
the doctrine the same hath both the Father and the Son. If any man come to you
and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, nor say to him,
God speed you: for he that saith to him, God speed you, communicateth with his
wicked works". (2 John, ver. 8)
Here, then, it is manifest, that all
fellowship with those who have not the doctrine of Jesus Christ, which is "a
communication in their evil works" — that is, in their false tenets, or worship,
or in any act of religion — is strictly forbidden, under pain of losing the
"things we have wrought, the reward of our labors, the salvation of our souls".
And if this holy apostle declares that the very saying God speed to such people
is a communication with their wicked works, what would he have said of going to
their places of worship, of hearing their sermons, joining in their prayers, or
From this passage the learned translators of
the Rheims New Testament, in their note, justly observe, "That, in matters of
religion, in praying, hearing their sermons, presence at their service,
partaking of their sacraments, and all other communicating with them in
spiritual things, it is a great and damnable sin to deal with them." And if this
be the case with all in general, how much more with those who are well
instructed and better versed in their religion than others? For their doing any
of these things must be a much greater crime than in ignorant people, because
they know their duty better.
Q. These laws are very clear and strong; but
has the Christian church always observed and enforced the observance of them?
A. The spirit of Christ, which dictated the
Holy Scriptures, and the spirit which animates and guides the Church of Christ,
and teaches her all truth, is the same; and therefore in all ages her conduct on
this point has been uniformly the same as what the Holy Scripture teaches. She
has constantly forbidden her children to hold any communication, in religious
matters, with those who are separated from her communion; and this she has
sometimes done under the most severe penalties. In the apostolical canons, which
are of very ancient standing, and for the most part handed down from the
apostolical age, it is thus decreed: "If any bishop, or priest, or deacon, shall
join in prayers with heretics, let him be suspended from Communion". (Can. 44)
Also, "If any clergyman or laic shall go into
the synagogue of the Jews, or the meetings of heretics, to join in prayer with
them, let him be deposed, and deprived of communion". (Can. 63)
So also, in one of her most respected
councils, held in the year 398, at which the great St. Augustine was present,
she speaks thus: "None must either pray or sing psalms with heretics; and
whosoever shall communicate with those who are cut off from the Communion of the
Church, whether clergyman or laic, let him be excommunicated". (Coun. Carth. iv.
72 and 73)
The same is her language in all ages; and in
this she shows herself to be the true mother, who will not suffer her children
to be divided. She knows her heavenly spouse has declared that "no man can serve
two masters; we cannot serve God and Mammon;" and therefore she must either have
them to be hers entirely, or she cannot acknowledge them as such. She knows His
holy apostle has protested that there can be no "participation, no fellowship,
no concord, no pact, no agreement between the faithful and the unbeliever;" and
therefore she never can allow any of her faithful children to have any religious
communication with those of a false religion and corrupted Faith.
1. The Sincere Christian pp. 474 -533, James
Duffey and Son, Dublin
A Partial "Dishonor List" of "Bishops" Appointed by Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II
Past articles on this site have reviewed the various ways in which Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II defected from the Catholic Faith ("Connecting" with Betrayal, Baal, Yes, Most Holy Trinity, No and "Thumbs Up" From a Communist for an Apostate are just three of these articles) and the many ways in which offended
God by praising false religions and entering into places of false
worship and by the many Novus Ordo travesties over which he
presided personally. Instead of reciting all of these matters yet again,
I would simply want to present fifty out of probably hundreds, if not
thousands, of reasons, namely, Wojtyla's "episcopal" appointments,
arguing against the "canonization" of Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II even if
had been a true pope and even if the church he headed was in fact the
Catholic Church, which we know was not the case.
1. Joseph Bernardin, transferred from being the
conciliar archbishop of Cincinnati, Ohio, to being the conciliar
archbishop of Chicago, Illinois.
2. Roger Mahony, the conciliar "bishop" of Fresno, California, and then the conciliar "archbishop" of Los Angeles, California.
3. Tod Brown, the conciliar "bishop" of Boise, Idaho, and then the conciliar "bishop" of San Diego, California.
4. Sylvester Ryan, the retired conciliar "bishop" of
Monterey, California, who had an actual, honest-to-goodness baby-killer
serving on his priest-abuse advisory board (See the news story at Catholic Citizens.)
5. Robert Brom, the conciliar "bishop" of Duluth,
Minnesota, and then the conciliar 'bishop" of San Diego, California, who
presided over the San Diego diocese's bankruptcy proceedings caused by
the cover-up of clergy abuse cases.
6. Patrick McGrath, the conciliar "bishop" of San
Jose, California, who, among his other offenses, denied the historicity
of the Gospel accounts of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ's
Passion and Death.
7. George Patrick Ziemann, the disgraced former conciliar "bishop" of Santa Rosa, California.
8. Thomas Joseph O'Brien, the disgraced former conciliar "bishop" of Phoenix, Arizona.
9. Joseph Keith Symons, the disgraced former conciliar "bishop" of Palm Beach, Florida.
10. Daniel Leo Ryan, the disgraced former conciliar "bishop" of Springfield, Illinois.
11. Robert Lynch, the conciliar "bishop" of Saint
Petersburg, Florida, who gave encouragement to Michael Schiavo's efforts
to starve and dehydrate his wi
12. Joseph Fiorenza, the former conciliar
"archbishop" of Galveston, Houston, Texas, a protege of Joseph
"Cardinal" Bernardin who was a thorough supporter of the conciliar
13. Robert Joseph Banks, a former conciliar auxiliary
"bishop" in the Archdiocese of Boston, Massachusetts, and then the
conciliar "bishop" of Green Bay, Wisconsin.
13. Bernard Law, the disgraced former conciliar
"archbishop" of Boston, Massachusetts, who was appointed to that post by
Wojtyla/John Paul II. Law, who presided over the systematic cover-up
and protection of predator priests and presbyters in Boston, was
appointed by Wojtyla/John Paul II to be the archpriest of the Basilica
di Santa Maria Maggiore in 2004.
14. Thomas Daily, the former conciliar "bishop" of
Palm Beach, Florida, and the former conciliar "bishop" of Brooklyn, New
York, who was one of Law's chief enablers in protecting the likes of the
notorious Father Paul Shanley.
15. William Murphy, the conciliar "bishop" of
Rockville Centre, New York, who was yet another participant in the great
16. Richard Lennon, the conciliar "bishop" of
Cleveland, Ohio, who was a major supporter of Bernard Law's policies
while an auxiliary "bishop" there.
17. John McCormick, the conciliar "bishop" of
Manchester, New Hampshire, who has been an enabler of predator priests
and presbyters there as he had been as an auxiliary "bishop" in Boston,
18. Matthew Clark, the conciliar "bishop" of
Rochester, New York, who said in the 1990s that the Catholic Church
would have to find a way to "bless" same-gender "unions."
19. Kenneth Untener, the late conciliar "bishop" of Saginaw, Michigan, who was an enemy of the Catholic Faith.
20. Harry Flynn, the retired "archbishop" of Saint
Paul and Minneapolis, Minnesota, who was ever tolerant of the "rainbow"
agenda and brought disgrace upon himself by terming the late Father Paul
Marx, O.S.B., the founder of Human Life International, as an
21. William Levada, created by Wojtyla/John Paul II
as conciliar auxiliary "bishop" of Los Angeles in 1983 before being
appointed as the conciliar "archbishop" of Portland, Oregon, in 1986,
being transferred to San Francisco, California, in 1995.
22. George Niederauer, the conciliar "bishop" of Salt Lake City,
Utah, in 1995, promoted by Ratzinger/Benedict to be the conciliar
"archbishop" of San Francisco, California, in 2005.
23. Thomas Ludger Dupre, the disgraced retired "bishop" of Springfield, Massachusetts.
24. John Magee, the disgraced conciliar "bishop" of Cloyne, Ireland,
and the long-time secretary to Giovanni Montini/Paul VI and Karol
Wojtyla/John Paul II.
25. Christoph Schonborn, the conciliar "archbishop"
of Vienna, Austria, who has committed one offense against God after
another (see Almost Always At Odds With Themselves, Negotiating To Become An Apostate, They Continue to Caricature Themselves, and Meltdown.)
26. Robert Zollitsch, the conciliar "archbishop" of Freiburg in
Breisgau, who, of course denied on Holy Saturday, April 11, 2009, that
Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ did not die on the wood of the
Holy Cross in atonement for our sins.
27. Hans Hermann Groer, the late, disgraced
"archbishop" of Vienna, Austria, who was removed after "bishops" and
members of the laity complained about his predatory behavior, which he
denied until the day he died. (See Austria Cardinal Groer Exiled Over Sex Abuse.)
Christoph Schonborn is now saying that the then Joseph "Cardinal"
Ratzinger urged Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II to remove Groer, Schonborn's
predecessor, but was stymied for a long time by John Paul II. Just
another conciliar voice throwing John Paul II as the Benedict XVI
continues to promote the fiction of his late predecessor's "sanctity"
even though no one who protected moral derelicts is possessed of any
sense of true sanctity.
28. Jean-Louis "Cardinal" Tauran, appointed as a
"bishop" by John Paul II in 1990 and elevated to the conciliar colleges
of cardinals in 2003. Ratzinger/Benedict appointed Tauran as the
president of the "Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue." It
was in this capacity that he said the following in 2008:
Interviewer: There was a sense that Islam mustn't monopolise the proceedings?
Tauran: Yes, the people are obsessed by Islam. For example I'm going to India next month and
I want to give this message that all religions are equal. Sometimes
there are priorities because of particular situations, but we mustn't
get the impression there are first class religions and second class
religions.(Interview with Terrasanta.net, a Website of the Holy Land Review.)
29. Walter Kasper, appointed as
a "bishop" by John Paul II in 1989 and elevated to the conciliar
"college of cardinals" in 2001. Need one say anything more?
30. Bruno Forte, who was recommended by Joseph
"Cardinal" Ratzinger for the conciliar "episcopate" in 2004 despite
Forte's having denied the actual fact of Our Lord's Bodily Resurrection
on Easter Sunday:
example of this alarming situation, which threatens to make the Pope’s
disciplinary laxity seem strictly conservative by comparison, is the
little-noticed story of how Bruno Forte, a priest of the Archdiocese of
Naples, was suddenly made a bishop five months ago.
who last year was brought to the Vatican to preach a Lenten retreat to
an already incapacitated Pope, is rumored to be Cardinal Ratzinger’s
replacement as head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
How this happened is anybody’s guess. The rumor has caused a great deal
of consternation for one simple reason: Forte is a flaming
neo-modernist. As noted in the Winter 2005 issue of The Latin Mass in a
report by its Italian correspondent, Alessandro Zangrando, Forte was a
pupil of none other than the infamous Cardinal Walter Kasper. (In yet
another sign of things falling apart at the top, immediately after
Kasper’s own elevation to the rank of cardinal he publicly declared to
the press that the Old Covenant remains in force and is salvific for the
Jews, and that Protestants are under no obligation to convert and
still, Zangrando, a respected journalist not given to reckless claims,
relates that Forte’s 1994 essay Gesu di Nazaret, storia di Dio, Dio
della storia (Jesus of Nazareth, history of God, God of history) reveals
Forte as nothing less than “the standard-bearer of theories so radical
as to the point of putting in doubt even the historicity of the
resurrection of Christ. The empty tomb, he argues, is a legend tied
into the Jewish-Christian ritual performed at the place of Jesus’
burial. It is a myth inherited by the Christians from Jesus’ early
disciples. Therefore, the empty tomb, along with other details
surrounding the resurrection, is nothing but a ‘proof’ made up by the
community. In other words, Forte is trying to change the resurrection of
Christ into a myth, into a kind of fairy tale that cannot be proven.”
elevation to bishop was rather mysterious. Zangrando notes that Forte’s
name did not appear in any list of possible candidates submitted to the
Italian Nunciature, and even his ordinary, Cardinal Michele Giordano,
Archbishop of Naples, “was reportedly against that appointment.” But,
“in an apparent attempt at putting to rest a growing controversy” over
Forte’s candidacy, he was personally consecrated a bishop by none other
than Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, the very man Forte will succeed as head
of the CDF, according to the rumors. Yes, “our only friend in the
Vatican” has struck again. More and more it becomes apparent that this
man is perhaps the most industrious ecclesial termite of the
post-conciliar epoch, tearing down even as he makes busy with the
appearance of building up. The longer Ratzinger “guards” Catholic
doctrine, the more porous the barriers that protect it become.
as I have pointed out more than once on these pages, it was Ratzinger
who wrote in 1987 (in the second edition of his Principles of Catholic
Theology) that the “demolition of bastions” in the Church is “a
long-overdue task.” The Church, he declared, “must
relinquish many of the things that have hitherto spelled security for
her and that she has taken for granted. She must demolish longstanding
bastions and trust solely the shield of faith.” Now it seems that with
the bastions all but demolished, even the shield of faith is about to
clatter to the ground.
is no doubt the Holy Ghost will save the Church from extinction and
bring about her restoration. In the end, no other result is possible.
this happens, however, the difference between extinction and
non-extinction may come to be far smaller than even traditionalists
might have supposed. On the other hand, the very next Pope could be
another Saint Pius X, who will finally take arms against our enemies and
impose immediate restorative measures we could scarcely have
imagined. Who knows which way it will go? All we can do is continue
our loyal opposition, pray for the advent of a kingly, militant pope,
and hope that the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary will soon be
upon us. (Christopher A. Ferrara, Ratzinger Personally Consecrates Neo-Modernist Bishop;
this link, not surprisingly, no longer works. All past criticism of the
currently reigning "pope" cannot be permitted to made available for
31. Theodore McCarrick, the
founding conciliar "bishop" of Metuchen, New Jersey, and later the
conciliar "archbishop" of Newark, New Jersey, and Washington, District
of Columbia, who indemnified pro-abortion politicians and said openly
that men suffering from the affliction of being "attracted" to other men
should not be prohibited from studying for the conciliar presbyterate.
32. Emerson Moore, an auxiliary "bishop"
of the Archdiocese of New York who engaged in rank immorality and died
of auto immune deficiency disease.
33. Eugene Marino, appointed by John Paul
II to be the conciliar "archbishop" of Atlanta in 1988 but had to
resign two years later after it was revealed that he had gotten married
in a civil ceremony in 1988 to a lay-ministerette with whom he had been
34. Emil Wcela, appointed by John Paul II
to be a conciliar "bishop" of the Diocese of Rockville Centre, New
York, despite officials in the Vatican knowing that Wcela was an open
supporter of the impossibility known as "woman's ordination to the
35. Jacques Gaillot, the conciliar
"bishop" of Evreux, France, from 1982 to 1995 who supported, among other
things, the French abortion pill, RU-486 and who "blessed" the union of
two men who had entered into a perverted "union." It took a revolution
among the laity in Evreux to effect Gaillot's forced removal by the
Vatican on January 12, 2005. Gaillot remains in perfectly "good
standing" in the conciliar structures.
36. Sean Brady, the conciliar
"archbishop" of Armagh, Northern Ireland, who has presided over the
systematic protection of clerical abusers.
37. Michael Sheehan, the conciliar
"archbishop" of Santa Fe, New Mexico, in whose diocese is located one of
the institutions most responsible for the phony "rehabilitation" of
clerical abusers and who has keep in perfectly good standing the
notorious "Father" Richard Rohr and has praised Barack Hussein Obama
(see Unfortunate Enough to Be A Baby.)
38. Joseph Adamec, the conciliar "bishop"
of Altoona-Johnston, Pennsylvania, who went so far in 2003 as to
silence all of his priests and presbyters from criticizing his handling
of predators among their ranks.
39. Paul Loverde, the conciliar "bishop" of Arlington, Virginia, who persecuted whistle blower priest Father James Haley (Bishop Loverde, Where is Fr. James Haley?: Letters to Bishop Loverde.)
40. James T. McHugh, the late conciliar
"bishop" of Camden, New Jersey, and--for a brief time--Rockville Centre,
New York, who was one of the chief agents of promoting the corruption
of the innocence and purity of the young by means of explicit classroom
instruction in matters pertaining to the Sixth and Ninth Commandments.
(See Mrs. Randy Engel's The McHugh Chronicles.)
41. Edward Egan, the former conciliar
"archbishop" of New York who, as the conciliar "bishop" of Bridgeport,
Connecticut, went so far as to assert that his diocese could be held
legally liable for the actions of priests as the latter were
"independent contractors" paid by their parishes, not by their dioceses.
42. Rembert G. Weakland, the disgraced
former conciliar "archbishop" of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, whose warfare
against the Faith that was of international scope should have been
stopped long before he was forced to resign in disgrace in 2002. He
remains in "good standing" in the conciliar structures.
43. Thomas Gumbleton, a retired
conciliar auxiliary "bishop" of Detroit, Michigan, an appointee of the
late Giovanni Montini/Paul VI whose work in behalf of moral perversion
should have resulted in his suspension decades ago. He remains in "good
standing" in the conciliar structures.
44. Sean O'Malley, O.F.M. Cap., the
conciliar "archbishop" of Boston, Massachusetts, who has distinguished
himself as an ardent defender of the "legacy" of the late United States
Senator Edward Moore Kennedy and a sycophantic tool of the ancient
enemies of the Catholic Faith by serving the role in early-2009 of a
demagogue against Bishop Richard Williamson of the Society of Saint Pius
45. William Keeler, the former conciliar
"archbishop" of Baltimore, Maryland, who specialized in overseeing
relations between the conciliar church and adherents of the Talmud,
producing a document in 2002, "Reflections on Covenant and Mission", that had to be revised in 2009 because of its lack of clarity on several doctrinal points.
46. Howard Hubbard, the conciliar
"bishop" of Albany, an appointee of the late Giovanni Montini/Paul VI
who has spent the past thirty-three years as a thorough champion of the
conciliar religion. Not even an adoption arranged by Catholic Charities
in Albany for a "couple" engaged in perversity could prompt Wojtyla/John
Paul II to remove him.
47. John Raymond McGann, the conciliar
"bishop" of Rockville Centre, New York, from June 24, 1976, to January
4, 2000, who presided over a full-bore implementation of the conciliar
revolution in my home diocese, going so far as to persecute
traditional-leaning pastors and priests and presbyters. Report after
report was sent to Rome, some delivered personally to those close to the
late Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II. McGann, who protected his own share of
clergy abusers (see Swinging Clubs To Protect The Club).
48. Daniel Pilarczyk, Bernardin's worthy
"successor" as the conciliar "archbishop" of Cincinnati, Ohio, who
protected clerical abuses and even had an actual Freemason serving as
the archdiocese psychologist who screened the mental and emotional
fitness of candidates who were applying to study for the conciliar
49. Donald Wuerl, the conciliar "bishop"
of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania (since promoted by Ratzinger/Benedict to be
the conciliar "archbishop" of Washington, District of Columbia), who has
been one of the chief proponents of explicit classroom instruction in
matters pertaining to the Sixth and Ninth Commandments.
50. John Joseph O'Connor, the conciliar
"archbishop" of New York, from March 19, 1984, to May 3, 2000, who
protected his own share of pederasts in the conciliar clergy and who
told the ABC News program Nightline that "God was smiling" on the
conversion of a Catholic man to Judaism.
Mind you, this is not even to mention a
Father Marcial Maciel Degollado, the late founder of the Legionaries of
Christ whom Wojtyla/John Paul II protected despite having
incontrovertible proof of his moral depravity.
Like examples could go on interminably if
I was not tired enough already of having to think of the theological,
moral, and liturgical disaster that the man for whom I once served as a
willing cheerleader, Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II wrought upon the souls
of Catholics and non-Catholics alike. (See "Canonizing" A Man Who Protected Moral Derelicts.)
The Context of the Quote from Pope Pius XII's Ci Riesce Found in the Text of this Commentary
Thus the two principles
are clarified to which recourse must be had in concrete cases for the
answer to the serious question concerning the attitude which the jurist,
the statesman and the sovereign Catholic state is to adopt in
consideration of the community of nations in regard to a formula of
religious and moral toleration as described above. First: that
which does not correspond to truth or to the norm of morality
objectively has no right to exist, to be spread or to be activated.
Secondly: failure to impede this with civil laws and coercive measures
can nevertheless be justified in the interests of a higher and more
general good. .
The Church must live among
them and with them [the nations and peoples of the world]; she can never
declare before anyone that she is "not interested." The mandate
imposed upon her by her divine Founder renders it impossible for her to
follow a policy of non-interference or laissez-faire. She has the duty
of teaching and educating in all the inflexibility of truth and
goodness, and with this absolute obligation she must remain and work
among men and nations that in mental outlook are completely different
from each other.
Let Us return now, however, to the two propositions mentioned above: and in the first place to the one which denies unconditionally everything that is religiously false and morally wrong. With
regard to this point there never has been, and there is not now, in the
Church any vacillation or any compromise, either in theory or in
Her deportment has not changed in the
course of history, nor can it change whenever or wherever, under the
most diversified forms, she is confronted with the choice: either
incense for idols or blood for Christ. The place where you are now
present, Eternal Rome, with the remains of a greatness that was and with
the glorious memories of its martyrs, is the most eloquent witness to
the answer of the Church. Incense was not burned before the idols, and
Christian blood flowed and consecrated the ground. But the temples of
the gods lie in the cold devastation of ruins howsoever majestic; while
at the tombs of the martyrs the faithful of all nations and all tongues
fervently repeat the ancient Creed of the Apostles.
Concerning the second proposition, that is to say, concerning
tolerance in determined circumstances, toleration even in cases in
which one could proceed to repression, the Church - out of regard for
those who in good conscience (though erroneous, but invincibly so) are
of different opinion - has been led to act and has acted with that
tolerance, after she became the State Church under Constantine the Great
and the other Christian emperors, always for higher and more cogent
motives. So she acts today, and also in the future she will be faced
with the same necessity. In such individual cases the attitude
of the Church is determined by what is demanded for safeguarding and
considering the bonum commune, on the one hand, the common good of the
Church and the State in individual states, and, on the other, the common
good of the universal Church, the reign of God over the whole world. In
considering the "pro" and "con" for resolving the "question of facts,"
as well as what concerns the final and supreme judge in these matters,
no other norms are valid for the Church except the norms which We have
just indicated for the Catholic jurist and statesman. (Pope Pius XII, Ci Riesce, December 6, 1953.)
A Sampling of Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II's Addresses to Non-Christian Audiences
1. My visit to India is a pilgrimage of good will and peace, and the fulfilment of a desire to experience personally the very soul of your country.
It is entirely fitting that this pilgrimage should begin here, at Raj Ghat, dedicated to the memory of the illustrious Mahatma Gandhi, the Father of the Nation and "apostle of non-violence".
The figure of Mahatma Gandhi and the meaning of his life’s work have penetrated the consciousness of humanity. In his famous words, Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru has expressed the conviction of the whole world: "The light that shone in this country was no ordinary light" .
Two days ago marked the thirty-eighth anniversary of his death. He who lived by non-violence appeared to be defeated by violence.
For a brief moment the light seemed to have gone out. Yet his teachings and the example of his life live on in the minds and hearts of millions of men and women. And so it was said: "The light has gone out of our lives and there is darkness everywhere and I do not quite know what to tell you and how to say it... The light has gone out, I said, and yet I was wrong. For the light that shone in this country was no ordinary light. The light that has illumined this country for these many years will illumine this country for many more years..." . Yes, the light is still shining, and the heritage of Mahatma Gandhi speaks to us still. And today as a pilgrim of peace I have come here to pay homage to Mahatma Gandhi, hero of humanity.
2. From this place, which is forever bound to the memory of this extraordinary man, I wish to express to the people of India and of the world my profound conviction that the peace and justice of which contemporary society has such great need will be achieved only along the path which was at the core of his teaching: the supremacy of the spirit and Satyagraha, the "truthforce", which conquers without violence by the dynamism intrinsic to just action. .
The power of truth leads us to recognize with Mahatma Gandhi the dignity, equality and fraternal solidarity of all human beings, and it prompts us to reject every form of discrimination. It shows us once again the need for mutual understanding acceptance and collaboration between religious groups in the pluralist society of modern India and throughout the world.
3. The traditional problems of poverty, hunger and disease have not yet been eradicated from our world. Indeed, in some ways they are more virulent than ever. In addition, new sources of tension and anxiety have emerged as well The existence of immense arsenals of weapons of mass destruction causes a grave and justified uneasiness in our minds. The inequality of development favours some and plunges others into inextricable dependence. In these conditions peace is fragile and injustice abounds.
From this place, which belongs in a sense to the history of the entire human family, I wish, however, to reaffirm the conviction that with the help of God the construction of a better world, in peace and justice, lies within the reach of human beings.
But the leaders of peoples, and all men and women of good will, must believe and act of the belief that the solution lies within the human heart: "from a new heart, peace is born"... Mahatma Gandhi reveals to us his own heart as he repeats today to those who listen: "The law of love governs the world... Truth triumphs over untruth. Love conquers hate..." .
4. In this place, as we meditate on the figure of this man so marked by his noble devotion to God and his respect for every living being, I wish also to recall those words of Jesus recorded in the Christian Scriptures – with which the Mahatma was very familiar and in which he found the confirmation of the deep thoughts of his heart:
"Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.
Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake. for theirs is the kingdom of heaven" .
May these words, and other expressions in the sacred books of the great religious traditions present on the fruitful soil of India be a source of inspiration to all peoples, and to their leaders, ín the search for justice among people and peace between all the nations of the world.
Mahatma Gandhi taught that if all men and women, whatever the differences between them, cling to the truth, with respect for the unique dignity of every human being, a new world order – a civilization of love – can be achieved. And today we hear him still pleading with the world: "Conquer hate by love, untruth by truth, violence by suffering" .
May God guide us and bless us as we strive to walk together, hand in hand, and build together a world of peace! Visit to the funerary monument of Raj Ghat dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi, in Delhi, February 1, 1986.)
O Lord and God of all, you have willed that all your children, united by the Spirit, should live and grow together in mutual acceptance, harmony and peace. We grieve in our hearts that our human selfishness and greed have prevented your plan from being realised in our times.
We recognise that Peace is a gift from you. We also know that our collaboration as your instruments requires a wise stewardship of the earth’s resources for the true progress of all peoples. It calls for a deep respect and reverence for life and a keen appreciation of the human dignity and sacredness of conscience of every person, and a constant struggle against all forms of discrimination in law or in fact.
We commit ourselves, together with all our brothers and sisters, to cultivating a deeper awareness of your presence and action in history, to a more effective practice of truthfulness and responsibility, the ceaseless pursuit of freedom from all oppressive structures, fellowship across all barriers and justice and fullness of life for all.
Gathered in India’s Capital at this Memorial to the Father of the Nation – an outstanding and courageous witness to truth, love and non-violence – we invoke your blessings on the leaders of this country and of all nations, on the followers of all religious traditions and of all people of good will. Enable us, Lord, to live and grow as active partners with you and with one another in the common task of building a culture without violence, a world community that places its security not in the manufacture of ever more deadly weapons but in mutual trust and practical concern for a better future for all your children within a worldwide civilisation of truth, love and peace. Prayer for peace at the conlcusion of the visit to Raj Ghat in Delhi, February 1, 1986.)
1. I am pleased that my pilgrimage to India has brought me to Delhi, and once again to this Indira Gandhi Stadium. Here we are experiencing together, in a religious and cultural setting, the reality that is man in this your vast and fascinating land. You are representatives and leaders in various fields of human life and endeavour. To all of you I offer my greetings of friendship, respect and fraternal love.
I wish to thank all who have made this meeting possible, and I am especially pleased that so many young people are able to be here. I am very grateful to those of different religions who have welcomed me so cordially and have presented their deep reflections, together with their earnest hopes for India and for the world.
For all of us this experience is conducive to a deep reflection on this reality of man which we perceive and are immersed in. In India, without doubt, this reality offers us a spiritual vision of man. I believe that this spiritual vision is of supreme relevance for the people of India and for their future; it says much about their values, their hopes and aspirations and their human dignity. I believe that a spiritual vision of man is of immense importance for the whole of humanity With an emphasis on spiritual values the world is capable of formulating a new attitude towards itself – new, but based to a great extent on ethical values preserved for centuries, many of them in this ancient land. These include a spirit of fraternal charity and dedicated service, forgiveness, sacrifice and renunciation, remorse and penance for moral failings and patience and forbearance.
2. With the passing of time, it becomes evident that it is necessary to return over and again to the central issue of the world, which is man: man as a creature and child of God; man bearing within his heart and soul the image to fulfil his calling to live for ever.
The one who speaks to you today is convinced that man is the way that the Catholic Church must take in order to be faithful to herself. In my first Encyclical I stated: " Man is the full truth of his existence, of his personal being and also of his community and social being – in the sphere of his own family, in the sphere of society and very diverse contexts, in the sphere of his own nation or people... and in the sphere of the whole of mankind – this man is the primary route that the Church must travel in fulfilling her mission" . And with equal conviction I would state that man is the primary route that all humanity must follow – but always man in the "full truth of his existence".
3. India has so much to offer to the world in the task of understanding man and the truth of his existence. And what she offers specifically is a noble spiritual vision of man – man, a pilgrim of the Absolute, travelling towards a goal, seeking the face of God. Did not Mahatma Gandhi put it this way: "What I want to achieve – what I have been striving and pining to achieve... is self-realization – to see God face to face. I live and move and have my being in pursuit of this goal" .
On the rectitude of this spiritual vision is built the defence of man in his daily life. With this spiritual vision of man we are equipped to face the concrete problems that affect man, torment his soul and afflict his body.
From this vision comes the incentive to undertake the struggle to remedy and improve man’s condition, and to pursue relentlessly his integral human development. From it comes the strength to persevere in the cause, as well as the clarity of thought needed to find concrete solutions to man’s problems. From a spiritual vision of man is derived the inspiration to seek help and to offer collaboration in promoting the true good of humanity at every level. Yes, from this spiritual vision comes an indomitable spirit to win for man – for each man – his rightful place in this world.
Despite all the powerful forces of poverty and oppression, of evil and sin in all their forms, the power of truth, will prevail – the truth about God, the truth about man. It will prevail because it is invincible. The power of truth is invincible! "Satyam èva jayatè – Truth alone triumphs", as the motto of India proclaims.
4. The full truth about man constitutes a whole programme for world-wide commitment and collaboration. My predecessor Paul VI returned over and over again to the concept of integral human development, because it is based on the truth about man. He proposed it as the only way to bring about man’s true progress at any time, but especially at this juncture of history.
In particular Paul VI looked upon integral human development as a condition for arriving at that great and all pervasive good which is peace. Indeed, he stated that this development is " the new name for peace" .
To pursue integral human development it is necessary to take a stand on what is greatest and most noble in man: to reflect on his nature, his life and his destiny. In a word, integral human development requires a spiritual vision of man.
If we are to further the advancement of man we must identify whatever obstructs and contradicts his total well-being and affects his life; we must identify whatever wounds, weakens or destroys life, whatever attacks human dignity and hinders man from attaining the truth or from living according to the truth.
The pursuit of integral human development invites the world to reflect on culture and to view it in its relationship to the final end of man. Culture is not only an expression of man’s temporal life but an aid in reaching his eternal life.
India’s mission in all of this is crucial, because of her intuition of the spiritual nature of man. Indeed India’s greatest contribution to the world can be to offer it a spiritual vision of man. And the world does well to attend willingly to this ancient wisdom and in it to find enrichment for human laving.
5. The attainment of integral human development for mankind makes demands on each individual. It requires a radical openness to others, and people are more readily open to each other when they understand their own spiritual nature and that of their neighbour.
The Second Vatican Council perceived in our world "the birth of a new humanism in which man is defined above all by his responsibility towards his brothers and sisters and towards history" . It is indeed evident that there is no place in this world for "man’s inhumanity to man". Selfishness is a contradiction. By his nature man is called to open his heart, in love, to his neighbours, because he has been loved by God. In Christian tradition as expressed by Saint John’s Letter we read: " Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another... If we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us" .
The building of a new world requires something deeply personal from each human being. The renewal of the world in all its social relations begins in the heart of every individual. It calls for a change of heart and for repentance. It calls for a purification of heart and a real turning to God. And what is deeply personal is supremely social, because "man is defined above all in his responsibilities to his brothers and sisters...". Christians cherish the fact that, in teaching his followers how to pray, Jesus told them to approach God by calling him "Our Father ".
While speaking of my own convictions, I know that many of them are in accord with what is expressed in the ancient wisdom of this land. And in this wisdom we find today an ever old and ever new basis for fraternal solidarity in the cause of man and therefore ultimately in the service of God.
The spiritual vision of man that India shares with the world is the vision of man seeking the face of God. The very words used by Mahatma Gandhi about his own spiritual quest echo the words quoted by Saint Paul when he explained that God is not far from each of us: " In him we live and move and have our being " .
6. Religion directs our lives totally to God, and at the same time our lives must be totally permeated by our relationship to God – to the point that our religion becomes our life. Religion is concerned with humanity and everything that belongs to humanity, and at the same time it directs to God all that is human within us. I would repeat what I wrote at the beginning of my Pontificate: "Inspired by eschatological faith, the Church considers an essential, unbreakably united element of her mission this solicitude for man, for his humanity, for the future of men on earth and therefore also for the course set for the whole of development and progress" . As religion works to promote the reign of God in this world, it tries to help the whole of society to promote man’s transcendent destiny. At the same time it teaches its members a deep personal concern for neighbour and civic responsibility for the community. The Apostle John issued a challenge to the early Christian community which remains valid for all religious people everywhere: " I ask you, how can God’s love survive in a man who has enough of this world’s goods yet closes his heart to his brother when he sees him in need?" .
7. In the world today, there is a need for all religions to collaborate in the cause of humanity, and to do this from the viewpoint of the spiritual nature of man. Today, as Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains, Parsees and Christians, we gather in fraternal love to assert this by our very presence. As we proclaim the truth about man, we insist that man’s search for temporal and social well-being and full human dignity corresponds to the deep longings of his spiritual nature. To work for the attainment and preservation of all human rights, including the basic right to worship God according to the dictates of an upright conscience and to profess that faith externally, must become ever more a subject of interreligious collaboration at all levels. This interreligious collaboration must also be concerned with the struggle to eliminate hunger, poverty, ignorance, persecution, discrimination and every form of enslavement of the human spirit. Religion is the mainspring of society’s commitment to justice, and interreligious collaboration must reaffirm this in practice.
8. All efforts in the cause of man are linked to a particular vision of man, and all effective and complete efforts require a spiritual vision of man. With Paul VI I repeat the conviction that " there is no true humanism but that which is open to the Absolute and is conscious of a vocation which gives human life its true meaning... Man can only realise himself by reaching beyond himself" .
The late President of India, Dr Radhakrishnan, was right when he said: " Only a moral and spiritual revolution in the name of human dignity can place man above the idols of economic production technological organisation, racial discrimination and national egotism" . And again "The new world of peace, freedom and safety for all can be achieved only by those who are moved by great spiritual ideals" .
The wisdom of India will contribute incalculably to the world by its witness to the fact that increased possession is not the ultimate goal of life. The true liberation of man will be brought about, as also the elimination of all that militates against human dignity, only when the spiritual vision of man is held in honour and pursued. Only within this framework can the world adequately face the many problems of justice, peace and integral human development that call for urgent solutions. And within this framework of the truth of man, the holiness of God will be made manifest by the rectitude and uprightness of human relations in the social, political, cultural and economic spheres of life.
9. This is the humanism that unites us today and invites us to fraternal collaboration. This is the humanism that we offer to all the young people present here today and to all the young people of the world. This is the humanism to which India can make an imperishable contribution. What is at stake is the well-being of all human society – the building up of an earthly city that will already prefigure the eternal one and contain in initial form the elements that will for ever be part of man’s eternal destiny.
The Prophet Isaiah offers us his vision of this reality:
"I will appoint peace your governor,
and justice your ruler.
No longer shall violence be heard of in your land,
or plunder and ruin within your boundaries.
You shall call your walls ‘ Salvation’
and your gates ‘Praise’.
No longer shall the sun
be your light by day,
Nor the brightness of the moon shine upon you at night;
The Lord shall be your light forever,
your God shall be your glory" .
However we describe our spiritual vision of man, we know that man is central to God’s plan. And it is for man that we are all called to work – to labour and toil for his betterment, for his advancement, for his integral human development. A creature and child of God, man is, today and always, the path of humanity – man in the full truth of his existence! ( Meeting with the representatives of the different religious and cultural traditions in the «Indira Gandhi» Stadium (February 2, 1986)
O Lord and God of all, you have willed that all your children, united by the Spirit, should live and grow together in mutual acceptance, harmony and peace. We grieve in our hearts that our human selfishness and greed have prevented your plan from being realised in our times.
We recognise that Peace is a gift from you. We also know that our collaboration as your instruments requires a wise stewardship of the earth’s resources for the true progress of all peoples. It calls for a deep respect and reverence for life and a keen appreciation of the human dignity and sacredness of conscience of every person, and a constant struggle against all forms of discrimination in law or in fact.
We commit ourselves, together with all our brothers and sisters, to cultivating a deeper awareness of your presence and action in history, to a more effective practice of truthfulness and responsibility, the ceaseless pursuit of freedom from all oppressive structures, fellowship across all barriers and justice and fullness of life for all.
Gathered in India’s Capital at this Memorial to the Father of the Nation – an outstanding and courageous witness to truth, love and non-violence – we invoke your blessings on the leaders of this country and of all nations, on the followers of all religious traditions and of all people of good will. Enable us, Lord, to live and grow as active partners with you and with one another in the common task of building a culture without violence, a world community that places its security not in the manufacture of ever more deadly weapons but in mutual trust and practical concern for a better future for all your children within a worldwide civilisation of truth, love and peace. Prayer for peace at the conlcusion of the visit to Raj Ghat in Delhi (February 1, 1986)
In other words, Baal, yes, the Most Holy Trinity, no!
It gives me particular pleasure to have this opportunity of meeting you, the distinguished representatives of the religious, cultural and social life of this city of Calcutta, of Bengal and of India.
1. In you I greet the spiritual vitality of Bengala and of the whole of India.
In you I salute the venerable culture of this land. You are the heirs of more than three thousand years of intense artistic cultural and religious life in this region. Here the human spirit has been nobly served by a host of men and women rightly esteemed for their learning and wisdom, for their sensitivity to the deepest, aspirations of the human heart, for their precious artistic achievements.
In you I acknowledge with admiration not only the achievements of the past, but also those of modern Bengal and modern India.
I have looked forward to this meeting in a spirit of fraternal dialogue, with sentiments of solidarity with you who are engaged in many different forms of service to your fellow citizens.
I wish to say to you what the Second Vatican Council declared to the men and women of thought and science: "Happy are those who, while possessing the truth, search more earnestly for it in order to renew it, deepen it and transmit it to others. Happy also are those who, not having found it are working towards it with a sincere heart. May they seek the light of tomorrow with the light of today until they reach the fulness of light" .
May this be our common hope and prayer!
2. This afternoon I visited the Nirmal Hriday, the "Home of the Dying" at Kalighat.
In every country of the world, in every city, town and village, in every family, indeed in every human life, we come face to face with the ever-present reality of human suffering. "The ‘unwritten book’ of the history of humanity speaks constantly of the theme of suffering" .
Individuals and groups and whole populations suffer when they see something good in which they "ought" to share, but which escapes them. At times this suffering becomes especially intense. In certain historical situations the burden of pain borne by the human family seems to grove beyond all possibility of relief.
Elsewhere I have spoken concerning our contemporary world which "as never before has been transformed by progress through man’s work and, at the same time, is as never before in danger because of man’s mistakes and offences" .
Suffering, with its accompanying fear and frustration, becomes especially dramatic and acute when the question is asked: Why? and no adequate response is forthcoming.
I strongly believe that just as all human beings are joined in the experience of pain and suffering, so too all men and women of good will who are the leaders in the field op intellectual and artistic endeavour must join together in a new solidarity in order to respond to the fundamental challenges of our times. In this sense you are invested with an altogether special responsibility for the well-being of your motherland.
The new situation into which the advances of knowledge and technology have thrust the human family requires vision and wisdom equal to the best that humanity has produced under the guidance of its saints and sages. A new civilisation is struggling to be born: a civilisation of understanding and respect for the inalienable dignity of every human person created in the image of God; a civilisation of justice and peace in which there will be ample room for legitimate differences, and in which disputes will be settled through enlightened dialogue, not through confrontation.
3. Religious leaders, by a special title must be sensitive to the sufferings and needs of humanity. " Men look to the various religions for answers to those profound mysteries of the human condition which, today even as in olden times deeply stir the human heart: What is man? What is the meaning and the purpose of our life? What is goodness and what is sin? What gives rise to our sorrows and to what intent? Where lies the path to true happiness?..." .
There opens up an immense field of dialogue between the various philosophies and religious traditions in answer to these questions, and of mutual collaboration in seeking to respond concretely to the challenges of development and assistance, especially to the poorest.
The saints and true men and women of religion have always been moved try a powerful and active compassion for the poor and the suffering. In our day, as well as seeking to relieve the distress of individuals and groups, our religious and social conscience is challenged by the questions inevitably raised by the growing inequality between developed areas and those which are increasingly dependent, and by the injustice of much needed resources being channelled into the production of terrifying weapons of death and destruction.
Our religious beliefs, which teach us the value and dignity of all life, urge us to commit our energies to the endeavour of men and women of good will, in the first place the poor themselves, to help change those attitudes and structures which are responsible for man-made poverty and oppressive suffering. This requires a mighty investment of intellectual energy and imagination. Herein your contribution in the cause of truth is paramount. As intellectuals, thinkers, writers, scientists artists, you must always be intent on unleashing in the world the power of truth for the service of humanity.
And I am sure that you share a conviction once expressed by Paul of Tarsus: "We cannot do anything against the truth, but only for the truth" . This in fact is an echo of what is stated in the ancient Upanishads and upheld as the very motto of your revered nation: "Truth alone triumphs – Satyam èva jayatè" .
It is a deep religious intuition that the "service of men is service of God" – as expressed by Swami Vivekananda, one of the renowned figures connected with this city – and That when we go out to our brothers and sisters in fraternal love we receive from them more than we give them. This is an intuition which is also deeply Indian, as witnessed by your holy books and by the testimony of so many religious men and women.
I wish to reaffirm the Catholic Church’s commitment to the processes of development which lead to greater justice for all. I invite the Catholic community of Bengal and all India to work wholeheartedly for this goal, and I express the hope that followers of all religious persuasions will in the construction of a new civilisation of peace and love.
4. In speaking to you, men and women of the academic world, representatives of the world of art and the sciences, religious leaders I cannot but underline the Catholic Church’s esteem for the manifold cultural life which you represent. The Church rejoices at the creative richness which has characterised the culture of India during its history of thousands of years. During this time it has preserved a marvellous continuity and a subtle unity in the midst of a wide variety of manifestations.
Its vitality and relevance are borne out by the fact that it has moulded many sages and saintly mystics, poets and artists, philosophers and statesmen of great excellence. Yes, the Church looks in admiration upon your contribution to humanity and feels so close to you in so many expressions of your ethics and your asceticism. She attests to her profound respect for the spiritual vision of man that is expressed century after century through your culture and in the education that transmits it. And she is pleased that, from the beginning, Christianity has become incarnate on Indian soil and in Indian hearts.
Yes, culture is the embodiment of the spiritual experiences and desires of a people. It refines and unfolds the spiritual and native qualities of each human group. It creates the customs and institutions which seek to render social life more human and more conducive to the common good. It gives concrete expression to truth, goodness and beauty in a multitude of artistic forms .
Here it is fitting to make reference in particular to the rich cultural heritage of Bengal and of the city of Calcutta, graced with a great variety of ethnic communities, each making its specific contribution to the general culture.
In spite of a succession of traumatic experiences consequent upon natural disasters and political events, Bengal has been renowned for the vitality of its cultural and artistic life. In song, poetry, drama, dance and the graphic arts this culture gives expression to the original values present in the life of the people. It is a culture deeply rooted in the soil of this region. One notes warm hospitality, openness to others, and the strength of family life.
Against the background of great suffering and social problems all of this helps us to believe in the forces of hope and in the triumph, under God, of the human spirit.
5. In preparing for this visit I have learned that Bengal was pioneer in introducing modern education on a large scale. This is not to say that you do not have to contend today with serious problems in the field of education and culture. It is facing these problems with courage and resourcefulness that you show the integrity of your spiritual and intellectual leadership.
I am pleased to know that the Christian Churches have contributed to the cultural development of Bengal through their educational institutions. I wish to encourage the Catholic educators of all India to make their schools and centres of higher education ever better instruments at the service of justice development and harmony in social life, inspiring an ever-increasing awareness of the vocation to serve the integral well-being of people, especially the young and the poor.
In order to fulfil this task with completeness these institutions are called to a twofold fidelity. Fidelity, in the first place, to the Gospel message of universal brotherhood and solidarity under the loving providence of our heavenly Father, and fidelity to what is best and most valuable in Indian culture.
Christians in India know that their vocation is not only to give, but also to receive. Theirs is a pilgrimage to the depths of the human spirit, a pilgrimage which enriches their vision and insight into religious truth and into the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.
My dear friends: in the Catholic Church you will find a willing partner in the dialogue of truth and in the service of man; you will find a persevering ally to encourage you in making your irreplaceable contribution to humanity. Catholics in every part of the world are exhorted by the Second Vatican Council " that through dialogue and collaboration with the followers of other religions, and in witness of Christian faith and life, they acknowledge, preserve and promote the spiritual and moral goods found among these people, as well as in their social and cultural values" .
The Catholic Church in turn looks to you, men and women of the world of culture, to defend and promote the spiritual and moral well-being of your people, in the common cause of safeguarding and fostering human dignity, social justice, peace and freedom in the world.
To conclude, I would like to raise to God this significant prayer uttered by one of the great sons of this very region, Rabindranath Tagore: "Give us strength to love, to love fully, our life in its joys and sorrows, in its gains and losses, in its rise and fall. Let us have strength enough fully to see and hear Thy universe and to work with full vigour therein. Let us fully live the life Thou hast given us, let us bravely take and bravely give. This is our prayer to Thee" .
And may Almighty God help us to build together a civilisation of harmony and love for every human being! ( To the representatives of other religions in the College of Saint Francis Xavier of Calcutta, February 3 , 1986.)
Just as a reality check, my friends, please see
One or the Other for some quotations from Saint Francis Xavier, whose work in India was blasphemed by Wojtyla/John Paul II's remarks above (and below).
1. I have been longing to visit India, the land of many religions and of a rich cultural heritage, and I have looked forward to this meeting. I am very happy to have this occasion of spiritual fellowship with you.
India is indeed the cradle of ancient religious traditions. The belief in a reality within man which is beyond the material and biological, the belief in the Supreme Being which explains, justifies, and makes possible man’s rising above all aspects of his material self – these beliefs are deeply experienced in India. Your meditations on things unseen and spiritual have made a deep impression on the world. Your overwhelming sense of the primacy of religion and of the greatness of the Supreme Being has been a powerful witness against a materialistic and atheistic view of life.
The Indian rightly thinks that religion has a profound meaning for him. His very being experiences impulses, instincts, questions, longings and aspirations which testify to the greatest of all human quests: the quest for the Absolute, the quest for God. In my first Encyclical after being elected Pope, I made reference to the fact that the Second Vatican Council’s Declaration on non-Christian Religions "is filled with deep esteem for the great spiritual values, indeed for the primacy of the spiritual, which in the life of mankind finds expression in religion and then in morality, with direct effects on the whole of culture" .
2. The Catholic Church recognises the truths that are contained in the religious traditions of India. This recognition makes true dialogue possible. Here today the Church wishes to voice again her true appreciation of the great heritage of the religious spirit that is manifested in your cultural tradition. The Church’s approach to other religions is one of genuine respect; with them she seeks mutual collaboration. This respect is twofold: respect for man in his quest for answers to the deepest questions of his life, and respect for the action of the Spirit in man.
As an inner attitude of the mind and heart, spirituality involves an emphasis on the inner man and it produces an inward transformation of the self. The emphasis on the spiritual nature of man is an emphasis on the sublime dignity of every human person. Spirituality teaches that at the core of all outward appearances there is that inner self which in so many ways is related to the Infinite. This spirituality of inwardness which is so predominant in the Indian religious tradition achieves its complement and fulfilment in the external life of man. Gandhi’s spirituality is an eloquent illustration of this. He says: "Let me explain what I mean by religion... that which changes one’s very nature, which binds one indissolubly to the truth within and which ever purifies. It is the permanent element in human nature which counts no cost too great in order to find full expression and which leaves the soul utterly restless until it has found itself, known its Maker and appreciated the true correspondence between the Maker and itself " .
3. In a world filled with poverty, disease, ignorance and suffering, genuine spirituality can not only change the mind of man but also change the whole world for the better. Genuine spirituality is seriously concerned with bringing relief to all those who are suffering or in want. In the Christian Scriptures there is a particular passage which, I believe, the followers of all religious traditions will agree with: "He who says he is in the light and hates his brother is in the darkness still. He who loves his brother abides in the light, and in it there is no cause for stumbling" .
The abolition of inhuman living conditions is an authentic spiritual victory, because it brings man freedom, dignity, and the possibility of spiritual life. It enables him to rise above the material. Every man, no matter how poor or unfortunate, is worthy of respect and freedom by reason of his spiritual nature. Because we believe in man, in his value and in his innate excellence, we love him and serve him and seek to relieve his sufferings. As a sage of Tamilnadu, Pattinattar, puts it:
"Believe the One above. Believe that God is.
Know that all other wealth is naught. Feed the hungry.
Know that righteousness and good company are beneficial;
Be content that God’s will be done.
A sermon this is unto thee, O Heart!" .
The Catholic Church has time and again expressed the conviction that all people, both believers and non-believers, must unite and collaborate in the task of bettering this world where all live together. "This certainly cannot be done without a dialogue that is sincere and prudent" . Dialogue which proceeds from the "internal drive of charity" is a powerful means of collaboration between people in eradicating evil from human life and from the life of the community, in establishing right order in human society and thus contributing to the common good of all men in every walk of life.
4. Dialogue between members of different religions increases and deepens mutual respect and paves the way for relationships that are crucial in solving the problems of human suffering. Dialogue that is respectful and open to the opinions of others can promote union and a commitment to this noble cause. Besides, the experience of dialogue gives a sense of solidarity and courage for overcoming barriers and difficulties in the task of nation-building. For without dialogue the barriers of prejudice, suspicion and misunderstanding cannot be effectively removed. With dialogue, each partner makes an honest attempt to deal with the common problems of life and receives courage to accept the challenge of pursuing truth and achieving good. The experience of suffering, disappointment, disillusionment and conflict are changed from signs of failure and doom to occasions for progress in friendship and trust.
Again, dialogue is a means of seeking after truth and of sharing it with others. For truth is light, newness and strength. The Catholic Church holds that "the search for truth, however, must be carried out in a manner that is appropriate to the dignity of the human person and his social nature, namely by free enquiry with the help of teaching or instruction, communication and dialogue. It is by these means that men share with each other the truth they have discovered, or are convinced they have discovered, in such a way that they help one another in the search for truth" . Modern man seeks dialogue as an apt means of establishing and developing mutual understanding, esteem and love, whether between individuals or groups. In this spirit of understanding, the Second Vatican Council urges Christians to acknowledge, preserve and promote the spiritual and moral values found among non-Christians, as well as their social and cultural values .
The fruit of dialogue is union between people and union of people with God, who is the source and revealer of all truth and whose Spirit guides men in freedom only when they meet one another in all honesty and love. By dialogue we let God be present in our midst; for as we open ourselves in dialogue to one another, we also open ourselves to God. We should use the legitimate means of human friendliness, mutual understanding and interior persuasion. We should respect the personal and civic rights of the individual. As followers of different religions we should join together in promoting and defending common ideals in the spheres of religious liberty, human brotherhood, education, culture, social welfare and civic order. Dialogue and collaboration are possible in all these great projects.
5. In the context of religious pluralism, the spirit of tolerance, which has always been part of the Indian heritage, is not only desirable but imperative and must be implemented in a framework of practical means of support. It is the teaching of the Church that the human person has a right to religious freedom. This freedom means that all men are to be immune from coercion on the part of individuals or social groups or any human power, so that no one is forced to act against his convictions or is prevented from acting in accordance with his convictions in religious matters, whether privately or publicly, whether alone or in association with others, within due limits . The world notes with great satisfaction that in the Preamble to her Constitution India has assured to all her citizens liberty of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship. It therefore becomes a duty incumbent on all citizens, especially on leaders in religious life, to support and guard this precious principle which specifically includes the right "to profess, practise and propagate religion". The way to do so is to show its effectiveness in the reality of public life. Everyone is called upon to uphold this religious liberty and to work for peace and harmony among people of different religious traditions, among societies, and among nations.
6. It is my humble prayer that the remarkable sense of "the sacred" which characterises your culture may penetrate the minds and hearts of all men and women everywhere. In this way God will be honoured and the human family will experience ever more fully its oneness and its common destiny. Peoples will feel the urgency of a global solidarity in the face of the enormous challenges facing mankind. The wisdom and strength which comes from religious commitment will further humanise man’s path through history.
May the Most High God, the Creator and Father of all that exists, man’s highest good, bless us in our task and guide our steps to peace!
With sincere gratitude for the generous hospitality with which you have received me, I wish you the fullness of peace in joy and in love!
(Meeting with the exponents of Non-Christian religions in the Rajaji Hall of Madras, February 5, 1986.)
In other words, my friends, Baal, yes, the Most Holy Trinity, no!
Distinguished Ministers and Members of Government,
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
I am pleased to have this opportunity to meet you, the respected leaders of the major religious communities represented among the people of Indonesia. As the Bishop of Rome, Successor of the Apostle Peter to whom Christ entrusted a responsibility for all his disciples, I have come on this pastoral visit to Indonesia in order to strengthen the faith of my Catholic brothers and sisters (Cfr. Luc. 22, 32). I have come to meet them, to pray with them, and to assure them that they are an important part of the Catholic Church spread throughout the world.
My visit is not restricted, however, to Indonesia’s Catholics. This country embraces within its far-flung boundaries a number of peoples, with a great richness of languages and customs. There are the traditional, indigenous religious cultures which still are found in many places. Ancient religious traditions such as Buddhism and Hinduism nourish their adherents with the age-old wisdom of the East. Confucianism too has added its characteristic note, while Islam has become the religious path of the majority of Indonesians. The Catholic Church has been present here for centuries and can give thanks to God for the deep faith of generations of Indonesian Catholics. Other Christian communities also have had a long history in this nation. This impressive heritage of religious traditions is widely recognized as a significant dimension of Indonesia’s life as a nation, one that calls for profound respect from all its citizens.
For this reason, I am happy to greet you, the representatives of those communities with which Indonesia’s Catholics are in close contact. I come to you as a man of peace concerned, like yourselves, for the growth of peace and true harmony among all the peoples of the earth. I come to you as a man of faith who believes that all peace is a gift from God. It is this peace of God “which passes all understanding” (Phil. 4, 7) that I invoke upon all the people of Indonesia.
One of the principal challenges facing modern Indonesia is that of building a harmonious society from the many diverse elements which are the source of the nation’s present promise and future greatness. Indonesia’s Catholics find a deep motivation for their contributions to this enterprise in the vision of universal harmony which the Christian faith offers them. By our belief in the one God who is the Creator of heaven and earth, of all that is seen and unseen, we who follow Christ are inspired to work for the advancement of peace and harmony among all people.
This Christian vision is in no way alien to the vision of unity which is characteristic of many other religions. Many religious traditions view the universe as an organic whole, whose parts are knit together in a great web of relations. From this vision is derived a respect for nature, sensitivity in human relationships, a high esteem for love and cooperation within families, a strong sense of justice and the recognition of the rights of each person. Belief in God as the Creator of all things is a powerful stimulus to promote a respectful dialogue among the adherents of the various religions. Undoubtedly, “when Christians and the followers of other religions are united in their belief in the Creator, there exists a sound basis for mutual understanding and peaceful exchange” (Ioannis Pauli PP. II Allocutio ad Indonesiae episcopos limina Apostolorum visitantes 7, die 20 maii 1989: Insegnamenti di Giovanni Paolo II XII, 1  1290).
This sort of respectful dialogue and exchange can play a powerful role in the building up of a peaceful and unified society. I wish to express my hope that Indonesia’s religious believers will take the lead in showing that profound respect for others which can foster enduring harmony among the diverse peoples of this nation.
In this regard I am very encouraged by the ideals and practical structures established by the Indonesian Constitution of 1945 concerning the freedom of each citizen to profess the religion of his or her choice and to enjoy freedom of worship. It is the teaching of the Catholic Church that this right to religious freedom is grounded in the very dignity of the human person created by God (Cfr. Dignitatis Humanae, 2). Religious freedom is indeed a fundamental human right, one which should be enjoyed by all religious communities, as well as individuals. Hence, it is very important that this right be protected, “ that the State should effectively ensure and promote the observance of religious freedom, especially when, alongside the great majority who follow one religion, there exist one or more minority groups of another faith (Ioannis Pauli PP. II Nuntius ob diem ad pacem fovendam dicatum, pro a. D. 1989, 8, die 8 dec. 1988: Insegnamenti di Giovanni Polo II, XI, 4  1788).
Distinguished friends: today more than ever the world has become sensitive to the yearning of all peoples to be free, to experience the liberty to live in accordance with the dictates of conscience, to search for the truth without constraint, and to express one’s convictions in a society which promotes authentic progress and a constructive dialogue among people of different beliefs. It is true that this yearning for freedom, unless it is disciplined and directed by a sensitivity to spiritual values and the objective principles of human morality, can degenerate into a permissiveness which enslaves rather than liberates. But this is the very reason why all religious believers should support the cause of authentic liberation by providing that spiritual vision which must necessarily inform any genuine growth in freedom. In a very real sense, it can be said that the responsibility for building a society of cooperation, tolerance and unity within diversity falls to the present generation as a sacred trust, and that Indonesia’s religious leaders have a weighty responsibility in this regard.
So too, do Indonesia’s young people. For this reason I would appeal to them with the words I addressed to young Muslims in Morocco in 1985. “Normally”, I said, “young people look towards the future, they long for a more just and more human world... (But) young people can build a better future if they first put their faith in God and if they pledge themselves to build this new world in accordance with God’s plan, with wisdom and trust” (Ioannis Pauli PP. II Allocutio Albae domi, in Marochio, ad iuvenes muslimos, 6. 4, die 19 aug. 1985: Insegnamenti di Giovanni Paolo II, VIII, 2  501 s. 500).
This is no small challenge. Indeed, the project of working together in respectful collaboration often involves adopting new perspectives, putting past tensions or hostilities behind and looking towards the future. Each of us is called to adopt an attitude of generous service to one another and in favour of all. As the Second Vatican Council has impressed upon Catholics: “we cannot truly pray to God the Father of all if we treat any people in other than a brotherly fashion” (Nostra Aetate, 5).
In a culturally diverse society, “to treat others in a brotherly fashion” means to live in dialogue. This can take on a number of forms. “Before all else, dialogue is a manner of acting, an attitude and a spirit which guides one’s conduct. It implies concern, respect, and hospitality towards the other” (Secret. pro Non Christianis “Notae quaedam de Ecclesiae rationibus ad asseclas aliarum religionum”, 1984, n. 29: AAS 76  824). In other words, it involves what is often called the “dialogue of life”, where people strive to live in an open and neighbourly spirit, sharing their joys and sorrows, their human problems and preoccupations.
But there is also the “dialogue of deeds”: collaboration for the integral development of all citizens. To this can be added the important dialogue of theological exchange, by which the partners aim to grow in understanding of their respective religious heritages, and to appreciate each other’s spiritual values. And finally, there can be the dialogue of religious experience by which persons rooted in their own religious traditions share their spiritual riches, such as prayer and contemplation (Cfr. ibid. 29-35: “l. c.” pp. 824-825).
In this context, a particular question merits attention. It is that of truth itself, its demands on those who believe, and its requirements for a sincere and respectful dialogue. Unless these issues are faced forthrightly and honestly, an enduring and fruitful collaboration among believers will not be possible.
The voice of conscience commits the human person at the deepest level to think and act in accordance with the truth. To act against one’s conscience would be to betray both the truth and our very selves. Religious believers therefore can never be expected to compromise the truth that they are committed to uphold in their lives.
Yet a firm adherence to the truth of one’s convictions in no way implies being closed to others. Rather it is an invitation to open oneself to the dialogue which we have already described. This is so for two reasons.
First, knowledge of the truth commits us to share the gift we have received with others. In the Holy Bible, Christians read that “God desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (Cfr. 1Tim. 2, 4). The Catholic Church is profoundly convinced that the truth, wherever it is found, can serve as a path to the one God, the Father of all. For this reason, she rejects nothing which is true and holy in other religions (Cfr. Nostra Aetate, 2).
The Church does not waver in her belief that Jesus Christ, the eternal Son of God, is “the Way, the Truth and the Life” (Io. 14, 6) and the definitive revelation of God to humanity. Yet, in the service to the truth that she has received, and in a spirit of respect and dialogue, the Church does not hesitate to cooperate with all men and women of good will for the spiritual and moral elevation of mankind and the dawn of a just and peaceful human society.
Respectful dialogue with others also enables us to be enriched by their insights, challenged by their questions and impelled to deepen our knowledge of the truth. Far from stifling dialogue or rendering it superfluous, a commitment to the truth of one’s religious tradition by its very nature makes dialogue with others both necessary and fruitful.
Here in Indonesia, the establishment by the Ministry for Religious Affairs of a national forum for communication and dialogue between religions may be viewed as a positive step. The great task of serving the truth invites you to join hands in cooperation. I offer my prayers for the success and the continuing fruitfulness of the good work that you have begun.
Dear brothers and sister: with each passing day, the unity of the human family becomes more and more apparent, even when that unity is dramatically threatened by the forces of war, violence and repression. Where spiritual values such as mutual respect, peaceful collaboration, and reconciliation are present, not only is the unity of individual groups strengthened, but the life of entire nations can well be changed and the course of history altered.
The challenge is ours. Together let us strive for mutual understanding and peace. On behalf of all mankind, let us make common cause of safeguarding and fostering those values which will build up the spiritual and moral health of our world. Let us generously serve the will of God, as we have come to know it, in a spirit of dialogue, respect and cooperation.
May God bless you all with his peace! ( Meeting with the leaders of the major religious communities of Indonesia (October 10, 1989)
I have looked forward to this meeting with you, the leaders of the various religions professed by the people of the Sudan. My Pastoral Visit to the Catholic Church in this Nation gives me the opportunity to extend the hand of friendship to you, and to express the hope that all the citizens of the Sudan, irrespective of differences between them, will live in harmony and in mutual cooperation for the common good.
Religion permeates all aspects of life in society, and citizens need to accept one another, with all their differences of language, customs, culture and belief, if civic harmony is to be maintained. Religious leaders play an important role in fostering that harmony.
Here in the Sudan I cannot fail to emphasize once more the Catholic Church’s high regard for the followers of Islam. Sudanese Catholics recognize that their Muslim neighbours prize the moral life, and worship the One God, Almighty and Merciful–especially through prayer, almsgiving and fasting. They appreciate the fact that you revere Jesus and his Mother Mary (Cf. Nostra Aetate, 3). They acknowledge that there are very solid reasons for greater mutual understanding, and they are eager to work with you in order to restore peace and prosperity to the Nation. I hope that this meeting will contribute to a new era of constructive dialogue and goodwill.
I would also like to offer a special greeting to my Christian brothers from other Churches and Ecclesial Communities: "The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit" (Phil. 4: 23). As you are well aware, the Catholic Church is deeply committed to the search for ecumenical understanding, in the perspective of fulfilling the will of our Lord Jesus Christ, "that they may be one" (Jn. 17: 21). I am happy to know that here in the Sudan good ecumenical relations exist and that there are many instances of cooperation. I am confident that the Lord will bless your efforts to proceed further along that path.
To all of you, respected religious leaders of the Sudan, I express once more my esteem, and I repeat that the Catholic Church is irrevocably committed to ecumenical and interreligious dialogue. May God inspire thoughts of peace in the hearts of all believers.
Baraka Allah as–Sudan!
(God bless the Sudan!) ( Meeting with the leaders of other religions in the Apostolic Nunciature of Khartoum (February 10, 1993)
1. I am very pleased to have this opportunity during my visit to Sri Lanka to meet representatives of the various religions which have lived together in harmony for a very long time on this Island: especially Buddhism, present for over two thousand years, Hinduism, also of very long standing, along with Islam and Christianity. This simultaneous presence of great religious traditions is a source of enrichment for Sri Lankan society. At the same time it is a challenge to believers and especially to religious leaders, to ensure that religion itself always remains a force for harmony and peace. On the occasion of my Pastoral Visit to the Catholics of Sri Lanka, I wish to reaffirm the Church’s, and my own, deep and abiding respect for the spiritual and cultural values of which you are the guardians.
Especially since the Second Vatican Council, the Catholic Church has been fully committed to pursuing the path of dialogue and cooperation with the members of other religions. Interreligious dialogue is a precious means by which the followers of the various religions discover shared points of contact in the spiritual life, while acknowledging the differences which exist between them. The Church respects the freedom of individuals to seek the truth and to embrace it according to the dictates of conscience, and in this light she firmly rejects proselytism and the use of unethical means to gain conversions.
2. The Catholic community hopes that through a continuing "dialogue of life" all believers will co–operate willingly in order to defend and promote moral values, social justice, liberty and peace. Like many modern societies, Sri Lanka is facing the spiritual threat represented by the growth of a materialistic outlook, which is more concerned with "having" than with "being". Experience makes it clear that mere technological progress does not satisfy man’s inner yearning for truth and communion. Deeper spiritual needs have to be met if individuals, families, and society itself are not to fall into a serious crisis of values. There is ample room for co–operation among the followers of the various religions in meeting this serious challenge.
For this reason, I appeal to you and encourage you, as the religious leaders of the Sri Lankan people, to consider the concerns which unite believers, rather than the things which divide them. The safeguarding of Sri Lanka’s spiritual heritage calls for strenuous efforts on the part of everyone to proclaim before the world the sacredness of human life, to defend the inalienable dignity and rights of every individual, to strengthen the family as the primary unit of society and the place where children learn humanity, generosity and love, and to encourage respect for the natural environment. Interreligious co–operation is also a powerful force for promoting ethically upright socio–economic and political standards. Democracy itself benefits greatly from the religiously motivated commitment of believers to the common good.
3. Perhaps nothing represents a greater threat to the spiritual fabric of Sri Lankan society than the continuing ethnic conflict. The religious resources of the entire nation must converge to bring an end to this tragic situation. I recently had occasion to say to an international group of religious leaders: "violence in any form is opposed not only to the respect which we owe to every fellow human being; it is opposed also to the true essence of religion. Whatever the conflicts of the past and even of the present, it is our common task and common duty to make better known the relation between religion and peace" (John Paul II, Address for the Opening of the Sixth World Assembly of the World Conference on Religion and Peace, 2) . The only struggle worthy of man is "the struggle against his own disordered passions, against every type of hatred and violence; in short against everything that is the exact opposite of peace and reconciliation" (John Paul II, Message for the World Day of Peace 1992, 7).
4. Very dear esteemed friends: I am certain that the principles of mercy and non–violence present in your traditions will be a source of inspiration to Sri Lankans in their efforts to build a peace which will be lasting because it is built upon justice and respect for every human being. I express once more my confidence that your country’s long tradition of religious harmony will grow ever stronger, for the peace and well–being of individuals, for the good of Sri Lanka and of all Asia.
[At the end of the meeting the Holy Father added the following words:]
And now I offer you a gift memorable of these days and of the meeting. I am very grateful for your presence and very grateful for this meeting with you that we are together... not against, but together!
Not to be together is dangerous. It is necessary to be together, to dialogue. I am very grateful for that. I see in your presence the signs of the goodwill and of the future, the good future, for Sri Lanka and for the whole world. And so I can return to Rome, more hopeful. Thank you. (Meeting with representatives of other religions (January 21, 1995)
It is a great joy for me to visit once again the beloved land of India and to have this opportunity in particular to greet you, the representatives of different religious traditions, which embody not only great achievements of the past but also the hope of a better future for the human family. I thank the Government and the people of India for the welcome I have received. I come among you as a pilgrim of peace and as a fellow-traveller on the road that leads to the complete fulfilment of the deepest human longings. On the occasion of Diwali, the festival of lights, which symbolizes the victory of life over death, good over evil, I express the hope that this meeting will speak to the world of the things which unite us all: our common human origin and destiny, our shared responsibility for people’s well-being and progress, our need of the light and strength that we seek in our religious convictions. Down the ages and in so many ways, India has taught that truth which the great Christian teachers also propose, that men and women “by inward instinct” are deeply oriented towards God and seek him from the depths of their being (cf. Saint Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae, III, q. 60, art. 5, 3). On this basis, I am convinced that together we can successfully take the path of understanding and dialogue.
2. My presence here among you is meant as a further sign that the Catholic Church wants to enter ever more deeply into dialogue with the religions of the world. She sees this dialogue as an act of love which has its roots in God himself. “God is love”, proclaims the New Testament, “and whoever remains in love remains in God and God in him. . . Let us love, then, because he has loved us first. . . no-one who fails to love the brother whom he sees can love God whom he has not seen” (1 Jn 4:16, 19-20).
It is a sign of hope that the religions of the world are becoming more aware of their shared responsibility for the well-being of the human family. This is a crucial part of the globalization of solidarity which must come if the future of the world is to be secure. This sense of shared responsibility increases as we discover more of what we have in common as religious men and women.
Which of us does not grapple with the mystery of suffering and death? Which of us does not hold life, truth, peace, freedom and justice to be supremely important values? Which of us is not convinced that moral goodness is soundly rooted in the individual’s and society’s openness to the transcendent world of the Divinity? Which of us does not believe that the way to God requires prayer, silence, asceticism, sacrifice and humility? Which of us is not concerned that scientific and technical progress should be accompanied by spiritual and moral awareness? And which of us does not believe that the challenges now facing society can only be met by building a civilization of love founded on the universal values of peace, solidarity, justice and liberty? And how can we do this, except through encounter, mutual understanding and cooperation?
3. The path before us is demanding, and there is always the temptation to choose instead the path of isolation and division, which leads to conflict. This in turn unleashes the forces which make religion an excuse for violence, as we see too often around the world. Recently I was happy to welcome to the Vatican representatives of the world religions who had gathered to build upon the achievements of the Assisi Meeting in 1986. I repeat here what I said to that distinguished Assembly: “Religion is not, and must not become a pretext for conflict, particularly when religious, cultural and ethnic identity coincide. Religion and peace go together: to wage war in the name of religion is a blatant contradiction”. Religious leaders in particular have the duty to do everything possible to ensure that religion is what God intends it to be – a source of goodness, respect, harmony and peace! This is the only way to honour God in truth and justice!
Our encounter requires that we strive to discern and welcome whatever is good and holy in one another, so that together we can acknowledge, preserve and promote the spiritual and moral truths which alone guarantee the world’s future (cf. Nostra Aetate, 2). In this sense dialogue is never an attempt to impose our own views upon others, since such dialogue would become a form of spiritual and cultural domination. This does not mean that we abandon our own convictions. What it means is that, holding firmly to what we believe, we listen respectfully to others, seeking to discern all that is good and holy, all that favours peace and cooperation.
4. It is vital to recognize that there is a close and unbreakable bond between peace and freedom. Freedom is the most noble prerogative of the human person, and one of the principal demands of freedom is the free exercise of religion in society (cf. Dignitatis Humanae, 3). No State, no group has the right to control either directly or indirectly a person’s religious convictions, nor can it justifiably claim the right to impose or impede the public profession and practice of religion, or the respectful appeal of a particular religion to people’s free conscience. Recalling this year the fiftieth anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, I wrote that “religious freedom constitutes the very heart of human rights. Its inviolability is such that individuals must be recognized as having the right even to change their religion, if their conscience so demands. People are obliged to follow their conscience in all circumstances and cannot be forced to act against it (cf. Article 18)” (Message for the 1999 World Day of Peace, 5).
5. In India the way of dialogue and tolerance was the path followed by the great Emperors Ashoka, Akbar and Chatrapati Shivaji; by wise men like Ramakrishna Paramahamsa and Swami Vivekananda; and by luminous figures such as Mahatma Gandhi, Gurudeva Tagore and Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, who understood profoundly that to serve peace and harmony is a holy task. These are people who, in India and beyond, have made a significant contribution to the increased awareness of our universal brotherhood, and they point us to a future where our deep longing to pass through the door of freedom will find its fulfilment because we will pass through that door together. To choose tolerance, dialogue and cooperation as the path into the future is to preserve what is most precious in the great religious heritage of mankind. It is also to ensure that in the centuries to come the world will not be without that hope which is the life-blood of the human heart. May the Lord of heaven and earth grant this now and for ever. (Meeting with the Representatives of the Other Religions and of the Other Christian denominations, Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi, November 7, 1999)
Dear Chief Rabbi of the Jewish community in Rome;
dear president of the Union of Italian Jewish Communities; dear
president of the community in Rome; dear rabbis, dear Jewish and
Christian friends and brethren taking part in this historic celebration:
First of all, I would like, together with you, to
give thanks and praise to the Lord who stretched out the heavens and
laid the foundations of the earth and who chose Abraham in order to make
him father of a multitude of children, as numerous ''as the stars of
heaven and as the sand which is on the seashore,'' to give thanks and
praise to Him because it has been His good pleasure, in the mystery of
His providence, that this evening there should be a meeting in this your
''major temple'' between the Jewish community that has been living in
this city since the times of the ancient Romans and the Bishop of Rome
and universal pastor of the Catholic Church.
I likewise feel it is my duty to thank the Chief
Rabbi, Prof. Elio Toaff, who from the first moment accepted with joy the
idea that I should make this visit, and who is now receiving me with
great openness of heart and a profound sense of hospitality, and in
addition to him I also thank all those members of the Jewish community
in Rome who have made this meeting possible and who in so many ways have
worked to insure that it should be at one and the same time a reality
Reflecting on Significance
Many thanks therefore to you all.
Toda rabba [ Hebrew for ''Many thanks'' ] .
In the light of the word of God that has just been
proclaimed and that lives forever, I would like us to reflect together,
in the presence of the Holy One - may he be blessed! - on the fact and
the significance of this meeting between the Bishop of Rome, the Pope,
and the Jewish community that lives and works in this city, which is so
dear to you and to me.
I had been thinking of this visit for a long time.
In fact, the Chief Rabbi was kind enough to come and see me in February
1981 when I paid a pastoral visit to the nearby parish of San Carlo ai
Catenari. In addition, a number of you have been more than once to the
Vatican on the occasion of the numerous audiences that I have been able
to have with representatives of Italian and world Jewry, and still
earlier, in the time of my predecessors Paul VI, John XXIII and Pius
I am likewise well aware that the Chief Rabbi, on
the night before the death of Pope John, did not hesitate to go to St.
Peter's Square, and, accompanied by members of the Jewish faithful, he
mingled with the crowd of Catholics and other Christians in order to
pray and keep vigil, as it were, bearing witness in a silent but very
effective way, to the greatness of the soul of that Pontiff, who was
open to all people without distinction and in particular to the Jewish
The heritage that I would now like to take up is
precisely that of Pope John, who on one occasion as he passed by here -
as the Chief Rabbi has just mentioned - stopped the car so that he could
bless the crowd of Jews who were coming out of this very temple. And I
would like to take up his heritage at this very moment when I find
myself not just outside but, thanks to your generous hospitality,
inside, the synagogue of Rome.
This gathering in a way brings to a close, after
the pontificate of John XXIII and the Second Vatican Council, a long
period which we must not tire of reflecting upon in order to draw from
it the appropriate lessons. Certainly, we cannot and should not forget
that the historical circumstances of the past were very different from
those that have laboriously matured over the centuries. The general
acceptance of a legitimate plurality on the social, civil and religious
levels has been arrived at with great difficulty.
Nevertheless, a consideration of centuries-long
cultural conditioning could not prevent us from recognizing that the
acts of discrimination, unjustified limitation of religious freedom,
oppression, also on the level of civil freedom, in regard to the Jews
were, from an objective point of view, gravely deplorable
manifestations. Yes, once again, through myself, the church, in the
words of the well-known declaration ''Nostra Aetate,'' ''deplores the
hatred, persecutions, and displays of anti-Semitism directed against the
Jews at any time and by anyone.'' I repeat, ''By anyone.''
I would like once more to express a word of
abhorrence for the genocide decreed against the Jewish people during the
last war, which led to the holocaust of millions of innocent victims.
When I visited on 7 June 1979 the concentration
camp at Auschwitz and prayed for the many victims from various nations, I
paused in particular before the memorial stone with the inscription in
Hebrew and thus manifested the sentiments of my heart: ''This
inscription stirs the memory of the people whose sons and daughters were
destined to total extermination. This people has its origin in Abraham,
who is our father in faith, as Paul of Tarsus expressed it. Precisely
this people, which received from God the commandment, ''Thou shalt not
kill,'' has experienced in itself to a particular degree what killing
means. Before this inscription it is not permissible for anyone to pass
by with indifference.''
The Jewish community of Rome, too, paid a high price in blood.
Church Offered Refuge
And it was surely a significant gesture that in
those dark years of racial persecution the doors of our religious
houses, of our churches, of the Roman Seminary, of buildings belonging
to the Holy See and of Vatican City itself were thrown open to offer
refuge and safety to so many Jews of Rome being hunted by their
Today's visit is meant to make a decisive
contribution to the consolidation of the good relations between our two
communities, in imitation of the example of so many men and women who
have worked and who are still working today, on both sides, to overcome
old prejudices and to secure ever wider and fuller recognition of that
''bond'' and that ''common spiritual patrimony'' that exists between
Jews and Christians.
This is the hope expressed in the fourth paragraph
of the council's declaration ''Nostra Aetate,'' which I have just
mentioned, on the relationship of the church to non-Christian religions.
The decisive turning-point in relations between the Catholic Church and
Judaism, and with individual Jews, was occasioned by this brief but
We are all aware that, among the riches of this
paragraph No. 4 of ''Nostra Aetate,'' three points are especially
relevant. I would like to underline them here before you in this truly
The Bond With Judaism
The first is that the church of Christ discovers
her ''bond'' with Judaism by ''searching into her own mystery.'' The
Jewish religion is not ''extrinsic'' to us, but in a certain way is
''intrinsic'' to our own religion. With Judaism, therefore, we have a
relationship which we do not have with any other religion. You are our
dearly beloved brothers, and in a certain way, it could be said that you
are our elder brothers.''
The second point noted by the Council is that no
ancestral or collective blame can be imputed to the Jews as a people for
''what happened in Christ's passion.'' Not indiscriminately to the Jews
of that time nor to those who came afterward nor to those of today. So
any alleged theological justification for discriminatory measures or,
worse still, for acts of persecution is unfounded. The Lord will judge
each one ''according to his own works,'' Jews and Christians alike.
The third point that I would like to emphasize in
the Council's declaration is a consequence of the second.
Notwithstanding the church's awareness of her own identity, it
is not lawful to say that the Jews are ''repudiated or cursed,'' as if
this were taught or could be deduced from the sacred Scriptures of the
Old or the New Testament. Indeed, the Council had already said in this
same text of ''Nostra Aetate,'' but also in the dogmatic Constitution
Lumen Gentium referring to St. Paul in the Letter to the Romans, that
the Jews are beloved of God, who has called them with an irrevocable
On these convictions rest our present relations. On
the occasion of this visit to your synagogue, I wish to reaffirm them
and to proclaim them in their perennial value.
For this is the meaning which is to be attributed to my visit to you, the Jews of Rome.
It is not, of course,
because the differences between us have now been overcome that I have
come among you. We know well that this is not so.
First of all, each of our
religions, in the full awareness of the many bonds which unite them to
each other, and in the first place that ''bond'' which the council spoke
of, wishes to be recognized and respected in its own identity, beyond
any syncretism and any ambiguous appropriation.
Path Is Still at Beginning
Furthermore, it is necessary to say that the path
undertaken is still at the beginning and, therefore, a considerable
amount of time will still be needed, notwithstanding the great efforts
already made on both sides, to remove all forms of prejudice, even
subtle ones, to readjust every manner of self-expression and, therefore,
to present always and everywhere, to ourselves and to others, the true
face of the Jews and of Judaism as likewise of Christians and of
Christianity and this at every level of outlook, teaching and
In this regard, I would like to remind my brothers
and sisters of the Catholic Church, also those living in Rome, of the
fact that the guidelines for implementing the Council in this precise
field are already available to everyone in the two documents published
respectively in 1974 and 1985 by the Holy See's Commission for Religious
Relations with Judaism. It is only a question of studying them
carefully, of immersing oneself in their teachings and of putting them
Perhaps there still remain between us difficulties
of the practical order waiting to be overcome on the level of fraternal
relations. These are the result of centuries of mutual misunderstanding
and also of different positions and attitudes, not easily settled, in
complex and important matters.
Jesus a Son of Your People
No one is unaware that the fundamental difference from the very beginning has been the attachment of us Catholics to the person and teaching of Jesus of Nazareth, a son of your people, from which were also born the Virgin Mary, the
Apostles who were the ''foundations and pillars of the church'' and the
greater part of the first Christian community. But this
attachment is located in the order of faith, that is to say, in the free
assent of the mind and heart guided by the spirit, and it can
never be the object of exterior pressure in one sense or the other. This
is the reason why we wish to deepen dialogue in loyalty and friendship,
in respect for one another's intimate convictions, taking as a
fundamental basis the elements of the revelation which we have in common
as a ''great spiritual patrimony.''
It must be said, then, that the ways opened for our
collaboration in the light of our common heritage, drawn from the law
and the prophets, are various and important. We wish to recall first of
all a collaboration in favor of man, his life from conception until
natural death, his dignity, his freedom, his rights, his
self-development in a society which is not hostile but friendly and
favorable, where justice reigns and where, in this nation, on the
various continents and throughout the world, it is peace that rules, the
shalom hoped for by their lawmakers, prophets and wise men of Israel.
More in general, there is the problem of morality,
the great field of individual and social ethics. We are all aware of how
acute the crisis is on this point in the age in which we are living. In
a society which is often lost in agnosticism and individualism and
which is suffering the bitter consequences of selfishness and violence,
Jews and Christians are the trustees and witnesses of an ethic marked by
the Ten Commandments, in the observance of which man finds his truth
and freedom. To promote a common reflection and collaboration on this
point is one of the great duties of the hour.
And finally, I wish to address a thought to this
city in which there live side by side the Catholic community with its
Bishop and the Jewish community with its authorities and its Chief
Let this not be a mere ''co-existence,'' a kind of
juxtaposition, interspersed with limited and occasional meetings, but
let it be animated by fraternal love.
The problems of Rome are
many. You know this well. Each one of us, in the light of that blessed
heritage to which I alluded earlier, is conscious of an obligation to
work together, at least to some degree, for their solution. Let us seek,
as far as possible, to do so together. From this visit of mine and from
the harmony and serenity which we have attained may there flow forth a
fresh and health-giving spring like the river that Ezekiel saw gushing
from the eastern gate of the Temple of Jerusalem, which will help to
heal the wounds from which Rome is suffering.
In doing this, I venture to
say, we shall each be faithful to our most sacred commitments and also
to that which most profoundly unites and gathers us together: faith in
the one God who ''loves strangers'' and ''renders justice to the orphan
and the wise,'' commanding us too to love and help them. Christians have
learned this desire of the Lord from the Torah, which you here
venerate, and from Jesus, who took to its extreme consequences the love
demanded by the Torah. Rediscovered Brotherhood
All that remains for me
now, as at the beginning of my address, is to turn my eyes and my mind
to the Lord, to thank him and praise him for this joyful meeting and for
the good things which are already flowing from it, for the rediscovered
brotherhood and for the new and more profound understanding between us
here in Rome and between the church and Judaism everywhere, in every
country, for the benefit of all.
Therefore I would like to say with the Psalmist, in his original language which is also your own inheritance:
Hodu la Adonai Ki tob Ki le olam hasdo Yomar-na Yisrael Ki le olam hasdo Yomeru-na yire Adonai Ki le olam hasdo.
O give thanks to the Lord for He is good, His
steadfast love endures forever! Let Israel say, ''His steadfast love
endures forever.'' Let those who fear the Lord say, ''His steadfast love
Amen. (Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II, Speech at the Synogogue of Rome, April 13, 1986, purchased from The New York Times for a single purchase price of $3.95; I don't know if this link, TEXT OF JOHN PAUL II'S SPEECH AT ROME SYNAGOGUE: 'YOU ARE OUR ELDER BROTHERS', will work for you.)