For 500 years, Roman Catholics have boasted that their church alone was blessed with divine authority. Not only did Catholics have Holy Scripture to guide them, they also had “sacred” tradition AND the allegedly infallible teaching magisterium of the pope and his bishops.
Catholics often suggested that their church was like a sturdy, three-legged stool, supported by Scripture, Tradition, and the magisterium, and able to withstand every wind of doctrinal confusion and heresy. As a young child in parochial grammar school, the priests and nuns often used the three-legged stool as a symbol for Catholicism’s unshakeable authority. It was claimed the Holy Spirit would never allow a pope to lead the church into error.
I’ve posted MANY times over the last twenty months regarding the mounting controversy in the Catholic church over pope Francis’ lifting of the ban on communion for remarried divorcees in his “Amoris Laetitia” (Joy of Love) post-synodal apostolic exhortation released in April 2016. The pope and his allies have been engaged in a chess match with church conservatives over this abrogation of doctrine, previously held to be infallible, ever since. This week, it was revealed the pope, in essence, shouted “Check!” (or even “Checkmate!”) to his conservative chessmates by invoking “authentic magisterium” for his doctrinal change. Conservatives aren’t convinced. What will be their next move?
This morning, I was listening to the 12/5/17 podcast of the “Calling All Catholics” talk radio show, and conservative Jesuit priest, Robert McTeigue, spoke dismissively about the pope’s invocation of “authentic magisterium” to support his repeal of infallible doctrine:
“Is it magisterial by nature or magisterial by name only?,” McTeigue half-heartedly conjectured, already quite convinced of the answer. In closing, he remarked, “I just think we need to read the best scholars and look for direction from the bishops and the cardinals to do the right thing.” Unspoken in the priest’s advice, but well understood by the listener, is that only conservative scholars, bishops, and cardinals should be heeded on this issue, not the pope or his allies.
So what we have here is a church being led by a heretical pope. At this point, conservative bishops and priests are still reluctant to call Francis a heretic outright, but they are basically advising Catholics to disobey him. What does that say for Catholicism’s unassailable three-legged stool when one of the legs is broken? If an entire religious system is built upon lies, like the infallibility of popes, what is a Catholic to do?
Catholic friend, turn from your institutional church, repent of your sins and accept Jesus Christ as your Savior by faith alone! Then ask the Lord to lead you to an evangelical church in your area that preaches God’s Word without compromise. It’s ALL about the Lord, Jesus Christ, not about a proven-to-be-fallible religious institution. The Lord is using this “Amoris Laetitia” controversy to expose Rome’s fallacious claims for all the world to see.