There is a delicious, delightful, glorious anomaly revealed by Cardinal Gracias, Archbishop of Bombay, who was one of the Synod's drafters (report in Crux).
He has revealed that the stuff in the Synod's final document about 'synodality' and 'discernment' did not represent the thinking and deliberations of the Synod Fathers, but was bunged in by a couple of PF-appointed secretaries.
Synodality, that is, was interpolated into the account of the Synod's deliberations ... by ... a highly unsynodical manoeuvre.
You couldn't make that up, could you?
Cardinal Gracias, God bless him, went on to point out that you simply can't go around claiming that such a document is 'Magisterium', because Magisterial documents need to be drafted with painstaking care. He's dead right. And every person who reads his words owes a debt of gratitude to His Eminence for his clarity of expression. This is a highly welcome development: clarity has not been left solely to Cardinals Mueller and Burke.
'Magisterium' is not some amusing little political game to help PF to advance his dodgy agenda. It is something that relates to binding the consciences of the People of God. It says a lot about what is so terribly wrong with this pontificate and with this pontiff that he can treat serious matters, relating to the souls of the Faithful, with such unbecoming levity.
As I've written before, some of us have experienced all this sort of nonsense within Anglicanism. Lambeth Conferences used to issue their 'Encyclicals' together with the Conference's 'Resolutions'. Back in the 1960s, we had a theologian called Eric Mascall. Unlike most Anglican theologians, his academic background was in Higher Mathemarics. He was a decisive and ruthless logician, and to this he added a widely respected competence in Thomism.
After Lambeth, Eric wrote crisp and beautifully entertaining little pamphlets (published by the Church Literature Association, 4d) exposing the logical absurdities in the pompous and woffly bishoptalk in which these fatuous documents were couched.
Bergoglianity will do nothing to enhance the reputation of Synods, Synodality, Discernment, Accompaniment, Magisterium, or the Petrine Ministry. It will, if it gets the chance, simply reduce Christ's Church Militant to what Anglicanism already is ... a laughing stock among the ... er ... discerning.
28 October 2018
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So the Pope...
- determines the subject matter the Synod will discuss;
- chooses many/most of the participants at the Synod either directly (my nominating them personally) or indirectly (because he nominates all the world's bishops);
- selects the principal drafters of the preparatory and concluding documents, as well as the Cardinal who runs the Synod as its secretary;
- can change the rules of the Synod whenever he wants (Remember the first synod on the Family when the participants failed to secure the necessary 2/3 majority vote to discuss Communion for the divorced and remarried, but the Pope included it in the next year's agenda anyway?);
- writes the Post-Synodal Exhortation, where he can say whatever he wants.
Isn't collegiality great!?
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