Pope Francis’s Paradigm Shift: Continuity or Rupture in the Mission of the Church: An Assessment of His Pontificate’s First Five Years
By Jose Antonio Ureta
The American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family, and Property, 2018, 207 pages
For several months after Jorge “Francis” Bergoglio was elected pope in 2013, Catholics were pleased that their new “pontiff” seemed to be a personable fellow who was taking a decidedly pastoral approach in comparison to his austere predecessor, Benedict XVI. But Francis’ impromptu airplane press conferences along with other statements soon had conservative Catholics on high alert. By 2016, with his Amoris Laetitia encyclical in which Francis guilefully lifted the ban on communion for remarried divorcees, it was clear to all conservative Catholics that Francis was working to “reform” the church according to a liberal, progressive agenda.
Conservative misgivings about Francis began as published articles of concern here and there and eventually grew to strong protest. In 2018, a spate of books were penned by conservative Catholic authors protesting Francis’ heterodoxy (see here), and we can add to the growing collection with this latest contribution, “Pope Francis’s Paradigm Shift.”
Author, Jose Ureta, a conservative layman, does an excellent job of summarizing the heterodoxy of the first five years of the pope’s tenure including chapters devoted to Francis’ promotion of the following:
- Green Agenda
- Accord with Islam while minimizing Islamic anti-(c)histian persecution
- Religious indifferentism and relevatism
- Subjective morality without absolute imperatives
- Lifting of the ban on communion for remarried divorcees
- Adapting to revolutionary and anti-(c)hristian modernity
Francis’ determined crusade to increasingly align the church with liberal, progressive ideologies has thrown the church into a tizzy. Doctrines and traditions previously held as unchangeable are being altered. Conservative prelates are being “retired” or reassigned to inconsequential, honorary posts. Francis’ heterodoxy is forcing Catholic conservatives to reexamine and redefine their cherished claims regarding the infallibility of popes and the alleged inability of a pope to lead the church into doctrinal error.
In the book’s conclusion, Ureta advises his Catholic readers to ignore the pope and remain faithful to traditional Catholic teaching, using the analogy of a wife of an abusive husband, who remains married, but separates from him for her safety. Folks, this is an extraordinary development, with Catholics being advised to ignore their pope. The ramifications are tremendous and foundation-shattering.
This short but extremely well-referenced book is an excellent resource for evangelical Vatican-watchers who desire to understand the growing crisis within Catholicism regarding the Francis papacy.
To my Catholic friends, this current crisis reveals that your church’s many claims about the papacy are without foundation. Many of your church’s other teachings are also man-made traditions without Biblical support. Come out of Roman Catholicism and turn to Jesus Christ, the unchanging Rock.
Are Roman Catholics Christian?