10 February 2018

Cupich the Super Slippery (1)

Lecturing yesterday at the other university, Cardinal Cupich gave a superb example of cunning slipperiness. In its skill, it is positively beautiful. In its scope, breathtaking.

"Their [married couples' and families'] decisions of conscience represent God's personal guidance for the particularities of their lives. In other words, the voice of conscience ... the voice of God ... or if I may be permitted to quote an Oxford man here at Cambridge, what Newman called 'the aboriginal vicar of Christ' ... could very well affirm the necessity of living at some distance from the Church's understanding of the ideal, while nevertheless calling a person 'to new stages of growth and to new decisions which can enable the ideal to be more fully realised' (AL 303)"

(1) Again, we have the very corruption I tried to nail down in a recent post, the idea that the Law of God (neatly here packaged and neutered as 'the Church's understanding of the ideal') can be trumped, set aside, by some other factor: here, 'Conscience'. Observe also how cleverly 'Sin', in this case Adultery, is replaced by the exquisite circumlocution 'living at some distance from the Church's understanding of the ideal'. [So, in the Confessional, I suppose we shall be hearing "And, Father, I have lived at some distance from the Church's understanding of the ideal seventy three times." It will make those pre-Easter sessions in the box even more lengthy.]

(2) But also, yet more brilliantly, notice the masterly way in which Newman is parenthetically invoked to sanctify a proposition which Super Slippery could (if taken to task) deny he actually attributes to Newman. He does not actually say that his formulation is what Newman wrote, said, or thought. But by waving the name of Newman over his words and citing a single phrase ...

Wow!! What a man! 

More on CSS when I have time. The piece I drafted on Latin pronunciation will have to be deferred.

27 comments:

Steve said...

This is nothing less than 'Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law'.

Ashley Ritchie said...

"Nor does the notion[of paradigm shift], in this radical sense, gain any support from Blessed John Henry Newman, who is always careful to distinguish the operation of conscience from the exercise of private judgement, and development from simple mutation."- from the excellent Doctor G Kirk. The Jesuits will have not quite a few helpers for their 'Lunatick Church' it appears.

vetusta ecclesia said...

The more I read the writings of Pope F or reports of his apologists the more I am tempted metaphorically to write in the margin my tutor's favourite put down: "guff".

Amateur Brain Surgeon said...

Dear Father. Who does not absolutely love it when you are so bold and beautiful?

Liam Ronan said...

"Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not." John 8:44-45

Like father like son.

Deacon Augustine said...

One of the most subtle deceptions within Amoris Laetitia starts from the claim that the Church has too often spoken of Marriage in terms of an "ideal". It then goes on to do precisely that by dismissing Marriage as a sacramental and canonical state which objectively either exists or does not exist, and then proceeds to treat it as a virtually unattainable "ideal" to which one may approach or approximate via gradual increments. The whole "paradigm" adopted is precisely one of "graduality of the law" despite protestaions to the contrary, and that is precisely what we see in these nefarious ruminations of Cupich.

GOR said...

Well it seems that Cdl. Cupich has learned well from Pope Francis and eschews rigidity. We just can’t be authoritarian and paternalistic, can we?

What part of “Depart from me ye cursed…” doesn’t he understand? That seems pretty rigid and was said with authority. The Ten Commandments are pretty rigid. “Thou shalt not…” doesn’t leave much wriggle room, right…?

The Cardinal appears to be stuck in the ‘60s. He may as well have repeated some mantras from that time: “I’m OK, you’re OK” and “If it feels good, do it!” Of course that wouldn’t be Catholic, but one wonders: is he?

Leo D. Lion said...

I'm so thankful that I don't understand what he is talking about bit I understand and process this:
Oh BLOOD and WATER which gushed forth from the Heart of Jesus, as a Fount of Mercy for us I TRUST IN YOU.

Personally you need to "wrap your soul in those words" , "carve those words into your thoughts" , "repeat those words in a perpetual contemplative prayer", in your "minds eye" hear those words and see the "Divine Mercy Image" that was given to St. Faustina along with the Divine Mercy Chaplet.

At 3 o'clock in the afternoon immerse yourself into Our Lord's ocean of Mercy, unfathomable in depth, at 3o'clock our Lord's Heart was pierced and His Blood and Water poured out as saving Mercy for us sinners. ALL MANKIND, ALL SINNER'S, know mmmthat your souls were beautiful at Baptism... now deep scarlet red from sins, can be saved from Eternal Punishment by veneration/ devotion of the Divine Mercy Image/painting and the words JESUS I TRUST IN YOU. Do it now, pray It, say it,
live it, spread it, especially for the dying.
Our Lord's Promise "You'll not be judged"... even though your soul be deep scarlet in sin. What an End Time Promise.

Leo D. Lion said...

Oh BLOOD and WATER which gushed forth from the Heart of Jesus, as a Fount of Mercy for us I TRUST IN YOU.

Personally you need to "wrap your soul in those words" , "carve those words into your thoughts" , "repeat those words in a perpetual contemplative prayer", in your "minds eye" hear those words and see the "Divine Mercy Image" that was given to St. Faustina along with the Divine Mercy Chaplet.

At 3 o'clock in the afternoon immerse yourself into Our Lord's ocean of Mercy, unfathomable in depth, at 3o'clock our Lord's Heart was pierced and His Blood and Water poured out as saving Mercy for us sinners. ALL MANKIND, ALL SINNER'S, know mmmthat your souls were beautiful at Baptism... now deep scarlet red from sins, can be saved from Eternal Punishment by veneration/ devotion of the Divine Mercy Image/painting and the words JESUS I TRUST IN YOU. Do it now, pray It, say it,
live it, spread it, especially for the dying.
Our Lord's Promise "You'll not be judged"... even though your soul be deep scarlet in sin. What an End Time Promise.

Ashley Ritchie said...

@GOR "The Cardinal appears to be stuck in the ‘60s" a peculiar phenomenon. I was thinking just that about the confused Archbish back from Peking...the man needs a tye dye tshirt and a joint to be complete. Our progressives are wonderfully retro, but they don't seem to realise it.

Elisabeth F. said...

Seems to me that some populist figures in the RC hierarchy are a great reason for separation of church and state. From the perspective of national politics in these USA, one can easily imagine, for example, the legalization of abortion at any age, no restrictions on marriage and divorce, and a "gender rights" free for all if any combination of the likes of Cupich, Dolan, PF, Schonborn, Marx and many confreres were to run for office and most likely be elected.

Dr. T.T.Coals said...

If anyone says that the voice of conscience is the voice of God, and that the voice of conscience overrules the objective and infallible truth taught by the Church, let him be anathema.

This weasel is anathema.

PAPALCount said...

sometimes I wonder if these prelates have any faith at all. do they pray? do they believe?

Banshee said...

What Our Lord calls us to do is not an ideal, but a command and a law of nature.

Answering, He said to them, "Have you not read that He Who made man from the beginning, 'made them male and female'? And He said, 'For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife, and they two shall be in one flesh.' Therefore now they are not two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man put asunder."

Gil Garza said...

As you point out, the reference to Dr. Newman that Cardinal Slippy uses actually says the opposite of what he says it does. The reference can be found in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, see below:

CCC Paragraph 1778 Conscience is a judgment of reason whereby the human person recognizes the moral quality of a concrete act that he is going to perform, is in the process of performing, or has already completed. In all he says and does, man is obliged to follow faithfully what he knows to be just and right. It is by the judgment of his conscience that man perceives and recognizes the prescriptions of the divine law (see cross reference in paragraph 1749):

Conscience is a law of the mind; yet [Christians] would not grant that it is nothing more; I mean that it was not a dictate, nor conveyed the notion of responsibility, of duty, of a threat and a promise.… [Conscience] is a messenger of him, who, both in nature and in grace, speaks to us behind a veil, and teaches and rules us by his representatives. Conscience is the aboriginal Vicar of Christ. [John Henry Cardinal Newman, “Letter to the Duke of Norfolk,” V, in Certain Difficulties felt by Anglicans in Catholic Teaching II (London: Longmans Green, 1885), 248.]

TLM said...

Thank you Fr. for publicly standing for Christ in His Church!! As they say in the states (using modern lingo) "You are the BOMB."

Sue Sims said...

I'm rather pleased that the cardinal's surname is pronounced 'Soopitch', as his manner is somewhat soupy.

Christopher Boegel said...

This is what the leader of Austin Ivereigh’s “Team Bergoglio” think:

“The God who sits in enthroned over the world and history as a changeless being is an offense to man.” (Walter Kasper, God in History, 1969)

Kasper also rejects the Gospel accounts of Jesus’ miraculous power over nature and life and death, calling these “legends.” (Kasper, Jesus the Christ, 1st ed. 1974, pp 90-91...reprinted 2011...used in “katholic” colleges and seminaries worldwide).

It’s a new thing: apostles, martyrs, Council of Nicea and evangelists are passé.

Jesus will be “continued” but in a new “tamed” format, at the hands of Kasper, Schonborn and Tucho (Heal Me with Your Mouth) Fernandez.

It’s the “New Evangelization” - you know - minus the Evangelists.

Anonymous said...

"necessity of living at some distance from the Church's understanding of the ideal"

so..."necessity of sin"?

It seems to me that there's an unacknowledged despair in that turn of phrase, and I find it deeply troubling. It makes me think I don't pray nearly enough for him, or for the Pope, nearly enough.

If the Sacrament of Matrimony is merely an ideal, then sacramental theology breaks down entirely. The priesthood is an ideal, in fact it's all external, measured in numbers and opinion surveys. Celibacy is an ideal. Obedience is an ideal. If it's an ideal we can be excused from pursuing it, and if we do really care about the pursuit, if we fail in it we're told it's inevitable. So: despair.

The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass...an ideal, merely. It doesn't give life. It's a gathering where we come to think about the ideal and then go about our necessarily un-ideal human lives, of course. Its worthy celebration is an ideal, too. In reality, it should reflect something of the un-ideal but authentic human communities where it is celebrated. The text and prescriptions of the Mass are ideals, too. Ideals are external to us. We're more about the internal, the real person inside, the journey of self-realisation, to the place where you finally come to realise that it's okay to be human, to be yourself, that it never was about attaining the ideal all along but to gently accept that where you are right now is where you're always going to be. Cheer up, and despair.

Unless you disagree, in which case you have some serious personal reform to do.

(Everyone: pray, pray, pray!)

Fr John Hunwicke said...

Well, Sue, my conscience will not permit me to deceive a fellow Oxonian. I am not sure. I have indeed heard his name pronounced, by Americans, with a soft C. But they are such strange people when it comes to pronouncing European names. For example, I can understand Weinstein being pronounced Vineshtine; or Weensteen; but how do they get to Winesteen?

Waugh has a jolly bit in the Loved One where an expat Briton refers to an American Mr Medici, pronouncing it in the Italian way, but is rebuked on the grounds that "you make it sound kinda Wop but he's a fine American boy ..." etc. etc..

In an earlier generation, of course, we had our (bishop) Soapy Sam.

Sue Sims said...

I've just been looking online at this pronunciation thing. Cardinal Cupich's parents were Croatian by birth, and in the Serbo-Croatian language(s),* is pronounced /ts/, so I suppose that it's not 'soopitch' but 'tsoopitch', which spoils the joke somewhat. Ah well.

Banshee said...

Wine-stine is more your American German thing. Wine-steen is... um... trying to sound posh? I guess that was the point of the joke in Young Frankenstein, where the good doctor insisted that it was pronounced "Fronkensteen!"

There are some -steen names, of course -- Springsteen, for one. So maybe it's a reproduction of German regional pronunciation differences? Or there's also a -stien name?

A lot of Jewish German surnames were not actually chosen by the family which bears them, and were chosen by Bismarck's government to be both distinctive and embarrassing to German Jews. So I suspect that might affect things, too.

Fr John Hunwicke said...

No problem. Tsuper Tslippery Tsupich.

TTT for short.

Sue Sims said...

Banshee: dead right about Jewish surnames. Apparently the officials who distributed the names were open to a bit of, er, friendly persuasion, so if a family was reasonably well off, they could buy attractive names like Silberstein or Rosenblum. My maiden name was Goldwater, which implies that my ancestors were not well-heeled, since the German form, Goldwasser, signified 'urine'.

Sorry, Fr. H - I realise this is a complete rabbit-hole...

Fr John Hunwicke said...

I don't think I like this Bismarck.

Perhaps Cupich's C is hard and 'Concupiscence' is a Serbo-Croat word meaning 'behaving improperly with Cupich'.

I gather the b****r is organising a set of seminars for Yankie bishops to be coached on AL. Perhaps he is angling to be Francis II. Now that really would drive me to ...er ...

coradcorloquitur said...

I have been noticing that aside from their cherished strategy of "gradualism" (let us get everyone to where we want them in gradual steps, all the time assuring them all is the same, nothing has changed while they indeed change everything), the latest tactic seems to be to use in their writing and speeches the names of Catholic stalwarts of the traditional faith while abusing the original meaning. We see that in Pope Francis's selective quotations from St. Vincent of Lerins (where this pope is basically saying the opposite of what the great St. Vincent is teaching) or in Bishop Robert Barron's very articulate address a year ago to the students in the otherwise splendid Thomas Aquinas College in Santa Paula, California, in which he lumps together the names of the modernist Karl Rahner (or Teilhard de Chardin in another context, his documentary "Catholicism") with those of Aquinas and Newman as he outlines the great Catholic intellectual tradition. It is a diabolically clever strategy: highjack the prestige and solidity of great figures of the Catholic tradition, dilute or distort their clear teachings by elliptical rhetoric, and appropriate their names for ideas and purposes these great doctors of the Faith would not only not recognize but abhor. And in the face of this great and spiritually lethal danger, there are those who use their time and energy in counseling against over-zealousness. Incredible!

Anonymous said...

I just learned about your blog today, Father, and have only read one or two entries, and could not find the posting you reference about the Law of God, but I wanted to comment on this supposed "paradigm shift" and God's law.

Being disturbed at all these claims about AL now being Magisterial teaching, (allowing divorced and remarried Catholics, under their own discernment and conscience, to receive Holy Communion) I began to wonder by what authority the Pope and Bishops could do this. I asked myself, are they relying on the passage "What you bind on earth I will bind in Heaven; what you loose on earth I will loose in Heaven."? Can they do that?

The Holy Spirit, apparently, came to my aid and answered my question. Not even two weeks after thinking about this, I found a pamphlet in a old religious library entitled "A Guide For The Faithful Catholic" written by a Father John. F. O'Connor, O.P, back on May 13, 1978. (St. Dominic's Mission Band, 7200 Division St., River Forest, IL.)

In it Father says, "...a Divine Law is made by God and there is absolutely no power on earth that can change it, NOT EVEN THE POPE." (the emphasis is in the original.)

This was very consoling to me. Regardless of what the Pope is saying about Holy Communion to those remarried without an annulment, he cannot change what God has ordained. Thanks to you and other faithful priests and bishops, we at least understand the truth.