Gregory XVI…

…judges Francis’ idea on ‘diversified unity’

  • Fight the battles of the Lord vigorously: stand as a wall against every height which raises itself against the knowledge of God

We write these things to you with grieving mind but trusting in Him who commands the winds and makes them still. Take up the shield of faith and fight the battles of the Lord vigorously. You especially must stand as a wall against every height which raises itself against the knowledge of God. Unsheath the sword of the spirit, which is the word of God, and may those who hunger after justice receive bread from you. Having been called so that you might be diligent cultivators in the vineyard of the Lord, do this one thing, and labor in it together, so that every root of bitterness may be removed from your field, all seeds of vice destroyed, and a happy crop of virtues may take root and grow. (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari vos, no. 22, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on if doctrine can be interpreted against the infallible Magisterium

  • It is injurious to propose a certain ‘restoration and regeneration’ for the Church

To use the words of the fathers of Trent, it is certain that the Church “was instructed by Jesus Christ and His Apostles and that all truth was daily taught it by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.” Therefore, it is obviously absurd and injurious to propose a certain “restoration and regeneration” for her as though necessary for her safety and growth, as if she could be considered subject to defect or obscuration or other misfortune. Indeed these authors of novelties consider that a “foundation may be laid of a new human institution,” and what Cyprian detested may come to pass, that what was a divine thing “may become a human church.” (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari vos, no. 6, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on the Church having defects

  • It is absurd and injurious to propose that the Church could be subject to defects or other imperfections

To use the words of the fathers of Trent, it is certain that the Church ‘was instructed by Jesus Christ and His Apostles and that all truth was daily taught it by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit’ (Council of Trent, session 13). Therefore, it is obviously absurd and injurious to propose a certain ‘restoration and regeneration’ for her as though necessary for her safety and growth, as if she could be considered subject to defect or obscuration or other misfortune. Indeed these authors of novelties consider that a ‘foundation may be laid of a new human institution,’ and what Cyprian detested may come to pass, that what was a divine thing ‘may become a human church’ (Saint Cyprian, Epistle 52). (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari vos, no.6, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on switching Christ for interconfessionalism

  • In these evil times the shepherds must never neglect their duty; vigilance and united effort against the common enemies

We must raise Our voice and attempt all things lest a wild boar from the woods should destroy the vineyard or wolves kill the flock. It is Our duty to lead the flock only to the food which is healthful. In these evil and dangerous times, the shepherds must never neglect their duty; they must never be so overcome by fear that they abandon the sheep. Let them never neglect the flock and become sluggish from idleness and apathy. Therefore, united in spirit, let us promote our common cause, or more truly the cause of God; let our vigilance be one and our effort united against the common enemies. Indeed you will accomplish this perfectly if, as the duty of your office demands, you attend to yourselves and to doctrine and meditate on these words: ‘the universal Church is affected by any and every novelty’ [Saint Celestine, Pope, epistle 21 to Bishop Galliar] and the admonition of Pope Agatho: ‘nothing of the things appointed ought to be diminished; nothing changed; nothing added; but they must be preserved both as regards expression and meaning’ [Saint Agatho, Pope, epistle to the emperor, apud Labb., ed. Mansi, vol. 2, p. 235]. (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari vos, no. 6-7, August 15, 1832)

  • You must stand as a wall against everything that raises itself against the knowledge of God

We write these things to you with grieving mind but trusting in Him who commands the winds and makes them still. Take up the shield of faith and fight the battles of the Lord vigorously. You especially must stand as a wall against every height which raises itself against the knowledge of God. Unsheath the sword of the spirit, which is the word of God, and may those who hunger after justice receive bread from you. Having been called so that you might be diligent cultivators in the vineyard of the Lord, do this one thing, and labor in it together, so that every root of bitterness may be removed from your field, all seeds of vice destroyed, and a happy crop of virtues may take root and grow. (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari vos, no. 22, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on Ecumenical dialogue

  • Those who do not gather with Christ will perish forever

With the admonition of the apostle that ‘there is one God, one faith, one baptism’ (Eph 4:5) may those fear who contrive the notion that the safe harbor of salvation is open to persons of any religion whatever. They should consider the testimony of Christ Himself that ‘those who are not with Christ are against Him,’ (Lk 11:23) and that they disperse unhappily who do not gather with Him. Therefore ‘without a doubt, they will perish forever, unless they hold the Catholic faith whole and inviolate.’ (Symbol .s. Athanasius) (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari vos, no. 9, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on Catholic Faith and Lutheran belief

  • The Protestants left no means untried to deceive the faithful

But later even more care was required when the Lutherans and Calvinists dared to oppose the changeless doctrine of the faith with an almost incredible variety of errors. They left no means untried to deceive the faithful with perverse explanations of the sacred books, which were published by their adherents with new interpretations in the vernacular. (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Inter Praecipuas, no. 4, May 8, 1844)

  • They will perish forever, who think that the safe harbor of salvation is open to persons of any religion whatever

With the admonition of the apostle that ‘there is one God, one faith, one baptism’ may those fear who contrive the notion that the safe harbor of salvation is open to persons of any religion whatever. They should consider the testimony of Christ Himself that ‘those who are not with Christ are against Him’ (Lk 11:23), and that they disperse unhappily who do not gather with Him. Therefore ‘without a doubt, they will perish forever, unless they hold the Catholic faith whole and inviolate’ (Symbol .s. Athanasius). (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari vos, no. 9, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on proclaiming the Gospel

  • It is injurious to consider the Church as subject to defect, ignorance or other misfortune

To use the words of the fathers of Trent, it is certain that the Church ‘was instructed by Jesus Christ and His Apostles and that all truth was daily taught it by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.’ Therefore, it is obviously absurd and injurious to propose a certain ‘restoration and regeneration’ for her as though necessary for her safety and growth, as if she could be considered subject to defect or obscuration or other misfortune. Indeed these authors of novelties consider that a ‘foundation may be laid of a new human institution,’ and what Cyprian detested may come to pass, that what was a divine thing ‘may become a human church’ (Saint Cyprian, epistle 52). (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari vos, no. 6, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on new forms of poverty

  • The Church even benefited those in distant lands

We are thankful for the success of apostolic missions in America, the Indies, and other faithless lands. The indefatigable zeal of many apostolic men has led them abroad into those places. Relying not on wealth nor on any army, they are protected by the shield of faith alone. They fearlessly fight the Lord’s battles against heresy […] They are inspired with a burning love and undeterred by rough roads and heavy toil. They search out those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death to summon them to the light and life of the Catholic Religion. So, fearless in the face of every danger, they bravely enter the woods and caves of savages, gradually pacify them by Christian kindness, and prepare them for true faith and real virtue. At length they snatch them from the devil’s rule, by the bath of regeneration and promote them to the freedom of God’s adopted sons. (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Probe nostis, no. 6, September 18, 1840)

…judges Francis’ idea on the ‘Bread of Life’

  • In Church teachings nothing should be changed: they must be preserved both as regards expression and meaning

Indeed you will accomplish this perfectly if, as the duty of your office demands, you attend to yourselves and to doctrine and meditate on these words: ‘the universal Church is affected by any and every novelty’ (Saint Celestine, Pope, epistle 21 to Bishop Galliar) and the admonition of Pope Agatho: ‘nothing of the things appointed ought to be diminished; nothing changed; nothing added; but they must be preserved both as regards expression and meaning’ (Saint Agatho, Pope, epistle to the emperor, apud Labb., ed. Mansi, vol. 2, p. 235). Therefore may the unity which is built upon the See of Peter as on a sure foundation stand firm. May it be for all a wall and a security, a safe port, and a treasury of countless blessings (Saint Innocent, epistle 11 apud Constat). To check the audacity of those who attempt to infringe upon the rights of this Holy See or to sever the union of the churches with the See of Peter, instill in your people a zealous confidence in the papacy and sincere veneration for it. (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari Vos, no. 7, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ prayer in the ecumenical and interreligious Meeting in Sarajevo

  • Those who are not with Christ are against Him; they will perish forever

With the admonition of the apostle that ‘there is one God, one faith, one baptism’ (Eph 4:5) may those fear who contrive the notion that the safe harbor of salvation is open to persons of any religion whatever. They should consider the testimony of Christ Himself that ‘those who are not with Christ are against Him’ (Lk 11:23), and that they disperse unhappily who do not gather with Him. Therefore ‘without a doubt, they will perish forever, unless they hold the Catholic faith whole and inviolate’ (Symbol .s. Athanasius). (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari vos, no. 13, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on divorcees as Godparents

  • Troublesome efforts against the Sacrament of Matrimony still continue

Now the honorable marriage of Christians, which Paul calls ‘a great sacrament in Christ and the Church’ (Heb 13:4; Eph 5:32|), demands our shared concern lest anything contrary to its sanctity and indissolubility is proposed. Our predecessor Pius VIII would recommend to you his own letters on the subject. However, troublesome efforts against this sacrament still continue to be made. The people therefore must be zealously taught that a marriage rightly entered upon cannot be dissolved; for those joined in matrimony God has ordained a perpetual companionship for life and a knot of necessity which cannot be loosed except by death. Recalling that matrimony is a sacrament and therefore subject to the Church, let them consider and observe the laws of the Church concerning it. Let them take care lest for any reason they permit that which is an obstruction to the teachings of the canons and the decrees of the councils. They should be aware that those marriages will have an unhappy end which are entered upon contrary to the discipline of the Church or without God’s favor or because of concupiscence alone, with no thought of the sacrament and of the mysteries signified by it. (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari vos, no. 12, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ ideas on faith being revolutionary

  • Certain teachings are being spread: the torches of treason are being lit everywhere

We have learned that certain teachings are being spread among the common people in writings which attack the trust and submission due to princes; the torches of treason are being lit everywhere. Care must be taken lest the people, being deceived, are led away from the straight path. May all recall, according to the admonition of the apostle that ‘there is no authority except from God; what authority there is has been appointed by God. Therefore he who resists authority resists the ordinances of God; and those who resist bring on themselves condemnation’ (Rom 13.2). Therefore both divine and human laws cry out against those who strive by treason and sedition to drive the people from confidence in their princes and force them from their government. (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari Vos, no. 17, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ ideas on the Church closed and ailing

  • It is injurious to propose the Church as subject to defect or obscuration

To use the words of the fathers of Trent, it is certain that the Church ‘was instructed by Jesus Christ and His Apostles and that all truth was daily taught it by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit’(Council of Trent, session 13) Therefore, it is obviously absurd and injurious to propose a certain ‘restoration and regeneration’ for her as though necessary for her safety and growth, as if she could be considered subject to defect or obscuration or other misfortune. Indeed these authors of novelties consider that a ‘foundation may be laid of a new human institution,’ and what Cyprian detested may come to pass, that what was a divine thing ‘may become a human church’(Saint Cyprian, epistle 52). (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari vos, no. 10, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea that the Pope should not judge

  • The government and administration of the whole Church rests with the Roman Pontiff 

Remember also that the government and administration of the whole Church rests with the Roman Pontiff to whom, in the words of the Fathers of the Council of Florence, ‘the full power of nourishing, ruling, and governing the universal Church was given by Christ the Lord.’ (Council of Florence, Session 25, in definit. apud Labb., ed. Venet., vol. 18, col. 527.) (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari vos, no. 8, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on the role of non-christian religions

  • Those who think that salvation is open to persons of any religion: ‘without a doubt, they will perish forever’

Now We consider another abundant source of the evils with which the Church is afflicted at present: indifferentism. This perverse opinion is spread on all sides by the fraud of the wicked who claim that it is possible to obtain the eternal salvation of the soul by the profession of any kind of religion, as long as morality is maintained. […] With the admonition of the apostle that ‘there is one God, one faith, one baptism’ (Eph 4:5) may those fear who contrive the notion that the safe harbor of salvation is open to persons of any religion whatever. They should consider the testimony of Christ Himself that ‘those who are not with Christ are against Him’ (Lk 11:23), and that they disperse unhappily who do not gather with Him. Therefore ‘without a doubt, they will perish forever, unless they hold the Catholic faith whole and inviolate.’ (Symbol s. Athanasius). (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari vos, no. 13, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on the laicity of the State

  • Religious indifferentism is a most unhealthy error

Now we examine another prolific cause of evils by which, we lament, the Church is at present afflicted, namely indifferentism, or that base opinion which has become prevalent everywhere through the deceit of wicked men, that eternal salvation of the soul can be acquired by any profession of faith whatsoever, if morals are conformed to the standard of the just and the honest. . . . And so from this most rotten source of indifferentism flows that absurd and erroneous opinion, or rather insanity, that liberty of conscience must be claimed and defended for anyone. Indeed, to this most unhealthy error that full and immoderate liberty of opinions which is spreading widely to the destruction of the sacred and civil welfare opens the way, with some men repeatedly asserting with supreme boldness that some advantage flows therefrom to religion itself. (Denzinger-Hünermann 2730-2731. Gregory XVI, Encyclical Mirari vos arbitramur, no. 10, August 15, 1832)

  • Concord between Church and State has always been fortunate and salutary for the ecclesiastical and the civil welfare

Nor can we foresee more joyful omens for religion and the state from the wishes of those who desire that the Church be separated from the State, and that the mutual concord of the government with the sacred ministry be broken. For it is certain that that concord is greatly feared by lovers of this most shameless liberty, which has always been fortunate and salutary for the ecclesiastical and the civil welfare. (Denzinger-Schönmetzer 1615. Gregory XVI, Encyclical Mirari vos arbitramur, August 15, 1832)

 …judges Francis’ idea on evil in our times

  • Indifferentism: the base opinion that eternal salvation can be acquired by any profession of faith

Now we examine another prolific cause of evils by which, we lament, the Church is at present afflicted, namely indifferentism, or that base opinion which has become prevalent everywhere through the deceit of wicked men, that eternal salvation of the soul can be acquired by any profession of faith whatsoever, if morals are conformed to the standard of the just and the honest. . . . And so from this most rotten source of indifferentism flows that absurd and erroneous opinion, or rather insanity, that liberty of conscience must be claimed and defended for anyone. (Denzinger-Hünermann 2730. Gregory XVI, Encyclical Mirari vos arbitramur, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on communion to divorced in second union

  • Matrimony is a sacrament and therefore subject to the Church

The people therefore must be zealously taught that a marriage rightly entered upon cannot be dissolved; for those joined in matrimony God has ordained a perpetual companionship for life and a knot of necessity which cannot be loosed except by death. Recalling that matrimony is a sacrament and therefore subject to the Church, let them consider and observe the laws of the Church concerning it. Let them take care lest for any reason they permit that which is an obstruction to the teachings of the canons and the decrees of the councils. They should be aware that those marriages will have an unhappy end which are entered upon contrary to the discipline of the Church or without God’s favor or because of concupiscence alone, with no thought of the sacrament and of the mysteries signified by it. (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari vos, no. 12, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on ‘culture of encounter’

  • There is nothing more damaging for the state than ‘religious liberty’

Experience shows that there is no more direct way of alienating the populace from fidelity and obedience to their leaders than through that indifference to religion propagated by the sect members under the name of religious liberty. (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Inter Praecipuas, no. 14 , May 8, 1844)

  • The Protestants left no means untried to deceive the faithful

But later even more care was required when the Lutherans and Calvinists dared to oppose the changeless doctrine of the faith with an almost incredible variety of errors. They left no means untried to deceive the faithful with perverse explanations of the sacred Books, […] (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Inter Praecipuas, no. 4, May 8, 1844)

…judges Francis’ idea on the evils in our times

  • Indifferentism has produced many of the evils that afflict the Church

Now we examine another prolific cause of evils by which, we lament, the Church is at present afflicted, namely indifferentism, or that base opinion which has become prevalent everywhere through the deceit of wicked men, that eternal salvation of the soul can be acquired by any profession of faith whatsoever, if morals are conformed to the standard of the just and the honest. (Denzinger-Hünermann 2730. Gregory XVI, Encyclical Mirari Vos, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on the impossibility of finding God with entire certainty

  • The truth exists in one God, one Faith, one Baptism – they disperse who do not gather with Christ

We consider another abundant source of the evils with which the Church is afflicted at present: indifferentism. This perverse opinion is spread on all sides by the fraud of the wicked who claim that it is possible to obtain the eternal salvation of the soul by the profession of any kind of religion, as long as morality is maintained. Surely, in so clear a matter, you will drive this deadly error far from the people committed to your care. With the admonition of the apostle that ‘there is one God, one faith, one baptism’ (Eph 4:5), may those fear who contrive the notion that the safe harbor of salvation is open to persons of any religion whatever. They should consider the testimony of Christ Himself that ‘those who are not with Christ are against Him’ (Lk 11:23), and that they disperse unhappily who do not gather with Him. Therefore ‘without a doubt, they will perish forever, unless they hold the Catholic faith whole and inviolate.’ (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari vos, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on absolute truth

  • There is only one Faith: salvation is not obtained just anywhere

Now We consider another abundant source of the evils with which the Church is afflicted at present: indifferentism. This perverse opinion is spread on all sides by the fraud of the wicked who claim that it is possible to obtain the eternal salvation of the soul by the profession of any kind of religion, as long as morality is maintained. Surely, in so clear a matter, you will drive this deadly error far from the people committed to your care. With the admonition of the Apostle that ‘there is one God, one faith, one baptism’ (Eph 4:5) may those fear who contrive the notion that the safe harbor of salvation is open to persons of any religion whatever. They should consider the testimony of Christ Himself that ‘those who are not with Christ are against Him,’ (Lk 11:23) and that they disperse unhappily who do not gather with Him. Therefore ‘without a doubt, they will perish forever, unless they hold the Catholic faith whole and inviolate’ (Symb. s. Athan.). Let them hear Jerome who, while the Church was torn into three parts by schism, tells us that whenever someone tried to persuade him to join his group he always exclaimed: ‘He who is for the See of Peter is for me’ (epist. 57). A schismatic flatters himself falsely if he asserts that he, too, has been washed in the waters of regeneration. Indeed Augustine would reply to such a man: ‘The branch has the same form when it has been cut off from the vine; but of what profit for it is the form, if it does not live from the root?’ (In ps. contra part. Donat.) (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari Vos, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on God

  • There is only one faith by which we may be saved

We consider another abundant source of the evils with which the Church is afflicted at present: indifferentism. This perverse opinion is spread on all sides by the fraud of the wicked who claim that it is possible to obtain the eternal salvation of the soul by the profession of any kind of religion, as long as morality is maintained. Surely, in so clear a matter, you will drive this deadly error far from the people committed to your care. With the admonition of the apostle that ‘there is one God, one faith, one baptism’ (Eph 4:5) may those fear who contrive the notion that the safe harbor of salvation is open to persons of any religion whatever. They should consider the testimony of Christ Himself that ‘those who are not with Christ are against Him,’ (Lk 11:23) and that they disperse unhappily who do not gather with Him. Therefore ‘without a doubt, they will perish forever, unless they hold the Catholic faith whole and inviolate.’ (Symbol .s. Athanasius) Let them hear Jerome who, while the Church was torn into three parts by schism, tells us that whenever someone tried to persuade him to join his group he always exclaimed: ‘He who is for the See of Peter is for me’ (St. Jerome, epis. 57). A schismatic flatters himself falsely if he asserts that he, too, has been washed in the waters of regeneration. Indeed Augustine would reply to such a man: ‘The branch has the same form when it has been cut off from the vine; but of what profit for it is the form, if it does not live from the root?’ (St. Augustine, in psalm. contra part. Donat.) (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari Vos, no. 13, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on the liberty of conscience

  • The dangers of liberty of conscience

This shameful font of indifferentism gives rise to that absurd and erroneous proposition which claims that liberty of conscience must be maintained for everyone. It spreads ruin in sacred and civil affairs, though some repeat over and over again with the greatest impudence that some advantage accrues to religion from it. ‘But the death of the soul is worse than freedom of error,’ as Augustine was wont to say  (Epis. 166) When all restraints are removed by which men are kept on the narrow path of truth, their nature, which is already inclined to evil, propels them to ruin. Then truly ‘the bottomless pit’ (Rev 9:3.) is open from which John saw smoke ascending which obscured the sun, and out of which locusts flew forth to devastate the earth. Thence comes transformation of minds, corruption of youths, contempt of sacred things and holy laws — in other words, a pestilence more deadly to the state than any other. Experience shows, even from earliest times, that cities renowned for wealth, dominion, and glory perished as a result of this single evil, namely immoderate freedom of opinion, license of free speech, and desire for novelty. (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari Vos, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on responsible parenthood

  • Matrimony is a Sacrament and is subject to the laws of the Church

Recalling that matrimony is a sacrament and therefore subject to the Church, let them consider and observe the laws of the Church concerning it. Let them take care lest for any reason they permit that which is an obstruction to the teachings of the canons and the decrees of the councils. They should be aware that those marriages will have an unhappy end which are entered upon contrary to the discipline of the Church or without God’s favor or because of concupiscence alone, with no thought of the sacrament and of the mysteries signified by it. (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari Vos, no. 12, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on all being saved

  • Those who seek eternal life in any other religion are not with Christ

Now We consider another abundant source of the evils with which the Church is afflicted at present: indifferentism. This perverse opinion is spread on all sides by the fraud of the wicked who claim that it is possible to obtain the eternal salvation of the soul by the profession of any kind of religion, as long as morality is maintained. Surely, in so clear a matter, you will drive this deadly error far from the people committed to your care. With the admonition of the apostle that ‘there is one God, one faith, one baptism’ (Eph 4:5) may those fear who contrive the notion that the safe harbor of salvation is open to persons of any religion whatever. They should consider the testimony of Christ Himself that ‘those who are not with Christ are against Him,’ (Lk 11:23), and that they disperse unhappily who do not gather with Him. Therefore ‘without a doubt, they will perish forever, unless they hold the Catholic faith whole and inviolate’ (Symbol. S. Athanasius). Let them hear Jerome who, while the Church was torn into three parts by schism, tells us that whenever someone tried to persuade him to join his group he always exclaimed: ‘He who is for the See of Peter is for me’ (St. Jerome, epistle 57). A schismatic flatters himself falsely if he asserts that he, too, has been washed in the waters of regeneration. Indeed Augustine would reply to such a man: ‘The branch has the same form when it has been cut off from the vine; but of what profit for it is the form, if it does not live from the root?’ (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari Vos, no. 13, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea that the Church should not be a Point of Reference

  • The Church is not subject to defects, for She is guided by the Holy Spirit

To use the words of the fathers of Trent, it is certain that the Church ‘was instructed by Jesus Christ and His Apostles and that all truth was daily taught it by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit’ (sess. 13, prooemium).  Therefore, it is obviously absurd and injurious to propose a certain ‘restoration and regeneration’ for Her as though necessary for Her safety and growth, as if She could be considered subject to defect or obscuration or other misfortune. Indeed these authors of novelties consider that a ‘foundation may be laid of a new human institution,’ and what Cyprian detested may come to pass, that what was a divine thing ‘may become a human church.’ (Gregory XVI, Encyclical Mirari Vos, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on the Re-reading of the Gospel

  • The Church is not an institution that may be renewed according to human criteria

To use the words of the fathers of Trent, it is certain that the Church ‘was instructed by Jesus Christ and His Apostles and that all truth was daily taught it by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit’ (Council of Trent, sess. 13, prooemium). Therefore, it is obviously absurd and injurious to propose a certain ‘restoration and regeneration’ for her as though necessary for her safety and growth, as if she could be considered subject to defect or obscuration or other misfortune. Indeed these authors of novelties consider that a ‘foundation may be laid of a new human institution,’ and what Cyprian detested may come to pass, that what was a divine thing ‘may become a human church’ (cf. St. Cyprian, epis. 52) […]
It is the proud, or rather foolish, men who examine the mysteries of faith which surpass all understanding with the faculties of the human mind, and rely on human reason which by the condition of man’s nature, is weak and infirm. (Gregory XVI, Encyclical Mirari Vos, n. 10, 22, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on proselytism

  • Uprightness alone, when separated from the Church, does not gain salvation

Now we consider another abundant source of the evils with which the Church is afflicted at present: indifferentism. This perverse opinion is spread on all sides by the fraud of the wicked who claim that it is possible to obtain the eternal salvation of the soul by the profession of any kind of religion, as long as morality is maintained. Surely, in so clear a matter, you will drive this deadly error far from the people committed to your care. With the admonition of the apostle that ‘there is one God, one faith, one baptism’ (Eph 4:5) may those fear who contrive the notion that the safe harbor of salvation is open to persons of any religion whatever. They should consider the testimony of Christ Himself that ‘those who are not with Christ are against Him’ (Lk 11:23), and that they disperse unhappily who do not gather with Him. Therefore ‘without a doubt, they will perish forever, unless they hold the Catholic faith whole and inviolate’ (Symbol of St. Athanasius). Let them hear Jerome who, while the Church was torn into three parts by schism, tells us that whenever someone tried to persuade him to join his group he always exclaimed: ‘He who is for the See of Peter is for me’ (St. Jerome, Epistle 57). A schismatic flatters himself falsely if he asserts that he, too, has been washed in the waters of regeneration. Indeed Augustine would reply to such a man: ‘The branch has the same form when it has been cut off from the vine; but of what profit for it is the form, if it does not live from the root?’ (St. Augustine, Epistle 166). (Gregory XVI, Encyclical Mirari Vos, August 15, 1832)

…judges Francis’ idea on all being children of God

  •  The Death of the Soul is Worse than Freedom of Error

This shameful font of indifferentism gives rise to that absurd and erroneous proposition which claims that liberty of conscience must be maintained for everyone. It spreads ruin in sacred and civil affairs, though some repeat over and over again with the greatest impudence that some advantage accrues to religion from it.  “But the death of the soul is worse than freedom of error”, as Augustine was wont to say. When all restraints are removed by which men are kept on the narrow path of truth, their nature, which is already inclined to evil, propels them to ruin. Then truly  “the bottomless pit” is open from which John saw smoke ascending which obscured the sun, and out of which locusts flew forth to devastate the earth. Thence comes transformation of minds, corruption of youths, contempt of sacred things and holy laws – in other words, a pestilence more deadly to the state than any other. Experience shows, even from earliest times, that cities renowned for wealth, dominion, and glory perished as a result of this single evil, namely immoderate freedom of opinion, license of free speech, and desire for novelty. (Gregory XVI. Encyclical Mirari Vos, August 15, 1832)

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