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Saturday, April 23, 2016

Vatican III?, Death to Death Penalty? Marx Says No Situation Exempt!

Novus Ordo: Vatican III?, Death to Death Penalty? Marx Says No Situation Exempt!
Here is the latest vomit coming from the Novus Ordo cult of man 

Why social media will shape ‘Vatican III’



Early in 2015 I was elected to represent the Australian bishops at the second of the two Synods on marriage and the family. Before I left for Rome, I was asked if I’d be willing to do a blog during the Synod.

I replied that I wasn’t much good at that sort of thing but that I’d give it a go. I doubted that I’d keep it going through the three weeks, in part because I know how busy Synods can become.
When I got to Rome, I found that writing the blog posts fitted well with the rhythm of the Synod day. I could do them either early in the morning before Mass or after lunch before returning to work. As the Synod wore on, I came to see that writing the blog was a way for me to focus my thoughts and feelings in the whirl of an intense and complex process.

I wrote the posts quickly with little revision, leaving the communications people back in Brisbane to correct what needed correction.
I thought I was doing the blog just to keep some folks back home in the loop, which struck me as a good thing to do. The Synod might be “of bishops” but it couldn’t be just “for bishops”. Others had to be part of the journey somehow.

What I didn’t expect was that the blog would get so big; in fact it went global. I didn’t see that coming and I didn’t understand it at the time. I still don’t understand it fully. But what I can see is that the blog gave a lot of people – even some journalists – a sense of what the Synod was actually like from within.

Seen from the outside, Synods can look tedious and dull, even a Synod as keenly anticipated as this one. But seen from the inside, Synods are anything but tedious or dull. They are seriously hard work, but they are also very interesting events, full of rich characters and revealing glimpses of the Church as it really is around the world. They have their dramas and surprises, especially with someone like Pope Francis in the chair.


One thing I tried to do in the blog was show the human face of the Synod, in the belief that a demystification of what was happening wouldn’t diminish the Synod. It’s not unlike what Pope Francis is doing with the papacy. His demystification of the office hasn’t diminished it; in fact, it’s probably, and paradoxically, done the opposite.
For me, a demystification of the Synod was the first step in showing others that there was “something greater than Solomon” at work in the assembly, which was certainly my experience.
Elements of the mix were these:
  • Reportage without spilling the beans, because respect for the confidentiality of the Synod was important, even if there was much that could be said without breaching confidentiality.
  • Reflection on key issues, since many of the more important questions were simple to put but complex to answer.
  • Humour, because there are some good laughs at a Synod, which keeps things in proportion and saves us from the self-seriousness which can be a danger in a thing like a Synod.
When the assembly ended, people asked me to keep blogging, but the muse had left me. In a sense, I had nothing to blog about. I’m not “an inveterate blogger” (as one report described me) and the moment had passed.

Some also suggested that I should publish the blog posts which, to my surprise, came to over 30,000 words. It didn’t feel like that when writing them. I decided not to publish because the posts were very situated and provisional utterances. To publish them would give the impression that they were more than they were meant to be. I preferred to leave them as they were with all their imperfections. If people want to look at them, they’re out there on the net.
The blog may be done, but the Synod journey isn’t. One thing I’ve come to see since the assembly ended is that the blog wasn’t just an addendum to the Synod. For me and for many, it was an integral part of the Synod journey.
As I see it now, the line between Synod and blog is blurred; and there’s a theological point to this. In the Synod process, the line of demarcation between the bishops and the rest of the Church has blurred, and social media has been a big part of that. The same sort of thing has been evident in the conflicts in the Middle East. Social media is an essential part of the phenomenon; to a large degree it’s what drives the conflicts, or even makes them possible.

I’ve been thinking about this and asking what it might mean for the national ecclesial assembly – perhaps a Plenary Council – that the Australian bishops are pondering at the moment.
I also find myself wondering what the next ecumenical council will look like, especially now that there are twice as many bishops in the world as there were at Vatican II. The digital world, and social media in particular, will have to be part of the council’s workings.


One reason why Vatican II was different from any preceding council was the presence of the media. One thing that will be different about the next ecumenical council – whenever and wherever that may be – will be the integral part played by social media in making the council a gathering not just of the bishops, but of the whole Church.

Pope Francis made it clear in his programmatic speech of Oct. 17 last year that synodality is something that applies not just to some of the bishops some of the time, but to all of the Church all of the time.
That’s really what I’m talking about here and why I think it’s important that the distinction between Synod and coverage, bishops and Church continues to be redefined, so that we may be the more inclusive Church that the Holy Spirit seems to want us to be.
Archbishop Mark Coleridge has led the Archdiocese of Brisbane, Australia, since 2012. From 1997 to 2001 he served in the Vatican’s Secretariat of State, and later as an auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Melbourne.



A cardinal may have used a children's hospital funds to refurbish his luxury apartment


The Vatican said on Thursday it is investigating two former officials over claims money meant for a children's hospital was used to refurbish a cardinal's luxury apartment.
Costly work at former Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone's flat — seeming to clash with Pope Francis's recommendations that church officials live as modestly as he — caused a scandal when allegations emerged that the Bambino Gesu Hospital foundation had helped foot the bill.
Giuseppe Profiti, former manager at the Vatican-owned Bambino Gesu, and its ex-treasurer Massimo Spina are being investigated, Vatican press officer Greg Burke said, confirming a report in Italian magazine L'Espresso.
Efforts to track down the two men, who no longer work at the hospital, were not immediately successful.
A lawyer for Bertone, who is not being investigated, said in a statement on Thursday the cardinal had never asked for or authorized any payment from the hospital foundation relating to his apartment.
Pope Francis has made cleaning up Vatican finances a priority of his papacy, as allegations of financial crimes have continued to emerge, including two major investigations into the handling of real estate and investments opened since late 2014.
Vatican investigators are looking into allegations the former hospital managers were involved in embezzling and misusing funds, according to L'Espresso. The work on Bertone's residence cost some 422,000 euros ($481,000), the magazine reported.
Burke did not confirm the details of the L'Espresso story.

Bertone is Big Pimpin'

The hermeneutics of talmudic alchemical continuity — John Paul II, Levinas, and Francis

Not many know who Emmanuel Lévinas is nor his influence.


Emmanuel Lévinas was a Litvak (Lithuanian Jew) who immigrated to France where he became a philosopher.  He was a pupil of ‘Monsieur Chouchani’ (aka ‘Shushani’) under whom he studied the Talmud.  ‘Monsieur Chouchani’ also taught Elie Wiesel as well as abused him.  According to Michael Morgan of Indiana University, “Levinas advocates a reading of the Bible through talmudic lenses”.  Saint John Paul II was an avid student of Lévinas while Jorge Mario Bergoglio's mentor, Juan Carlos Scannone was strongly influenced by Lévinas.  Scannone adopted Lévinas’ concepts of ‘the other’ and ‘face-to-face’ into his ideas which we see reflected in the words and action of Francis.


Juan Carlos Scannone, S.J.


ZENIT spoke with Nigel Zimmermann about his book, Levinas and Theology, published by Bloomsbury in September 2013. Zimmermann teaches theology at the University of Notre Dame Australia in Sydney.

ZENIT: Tell us about your inspiration for the book.

Zimmermann: I first discovered Levinas through reading John Paul II, especially his interview, Crossing the Threshold of Hope (1994). There, His Holiness called Levinas’ thought a ‘testimony for our age’, and paralleled his philosophy of the other with the ‘radical solidarity’ that the Christian Gospel maintains with every human person. The points of convergence between John Paul II — and especially his earlier writings before becoming Bishop of Rome under the penmanship of Karol Wojtyla — with Levinas, were remarkable. In fact, Wojtyla and Levinas had begun a dialogue and friendship which has largely been overlooked.

Out of this, I developed an interest in both thinkers which took hold as I completed my doctorate at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland. I recall my supervisor (the recently departed Rev Dr Michael Purcell) joking that one of my problems is that people who like John Paul II don’t read Levinas, and that people who like Levinas don’t read John Paul II…but in fact they had read each other’s work with great interest! A challenge for a Catholic theologian is to read both charitably and critically.




page 2 
 page 3





source: Not Just One Face: Levinas’ Talmudic Philosophy as Textual Reasoning (A Review Essay) 

First of all, Pope Francis shows his appreciation for the French Jewish philosopher, Emmanuel Lévinas, when he says: “Emmanuel Lévinas has founded his philosophy on the encounter with the Other.” In the pope’s eyes, “the Other has a face. One has to leave oneself in order to be able to contemplate it.” Pope Francis also stresses his appreciation of the periphery from whence he looks upon the world: “Since [the time of] Magellan, one has learned to look at the world from the standpoint of the south. That is why I say that the world should better see itself from the periphery than from the center; and I understand better my Faith from the standpoint of the periphery. But the periphery can be human – i.e., linked to poverty, health, or to a feeling of existential periphery.”

by Claire Elise Katz, Lara Trout, p. 202





Cardinal Schönborn criticizes clergy’s ’hardening of the heart’ against mercy

The cardinal who leads the Archdiocese of Vienna spoke at the gathering of the World Apostolic Congress on Mercy, hours after the Vatican announced that Francis’ apostolic exhortation on family life will be released on April 8. The cardinal concluded his talk with a reflection on a parable which he linked to global events after the terror attacks of September 11, 2001
On the same day it was announced he will co-launch Pope Francis’ new widely anticipated document on Catholic family life next week, Austrian Cardinal Christoph Schönborn spoke at a Rome conference against the hardening of the heart by clergy and political leaders.

Schönborn, a Dominican friar who leads the Vienna archdiocese, said the way that mercy sometimes encounters a hardening of the heart is an “enigma” that was faced by Jesus, even amidst his closest followers.

“We have to be frank that even the disciples of Jesus suffered a hardening of heart and Jesus often had to ask them why their hearts were so hard,” said the cardinal, speaking at the gathering of the World Apostolic Congress on Mercy.

“The callousness of the disciples with Jesus is probably the most terrible suffering for Jesus,” he said. “Not the hardening of the hearts of enemies, but the hardening of the hearts of the disciples.”

“Why do you not understand?” Schönborn imitated Jesus speaking to his followers.

Then, speaking of the church today, the cardinal asked: “Why do we so many times have hard hearts between ourselves, mad at our communities?”

Quoting 14th-century St. Catherine of Siena, he continued: “Priests can become wolves and cardinals devils this way!”

Schönborn was speaking Thursday hours after the Vatican announced that Francis’ apostolic exhortation on family life -- titled “Amoris laetitia, On Love in the Family” -- will be released April 8. The cardinal will present the document at a press conference that day alongside Italian Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri.

The document is the result of two back-to-back meetings of global Catholic bishops in Rome in 2014 and 2015, known as synods. It expected to address sometimes controversial issues like divorce and remarriage and same-sex marriage.

Schönborn touched upon the conversation around the Church’s teaching on divorce and remarriage in his address Thursday, saying the church is called to reflect on the relationship between truth and mercy.

“There is no mercy without truth,” said the cardinal. “I would say that truth is the landing ground of mercy. If we do not give truth to our situations, God cannot offer us mercy.”

Reflecting on a parable in John’s Gospel where Jesus meets a woman at a well who is said to have had several husbands, Schönborn said that Jesus “lays bare” the truth of her situation when he tells her bluntly that she has had five husbands.

“The truth makes us free,” said the cardinal. “Without the truth you cannot have the mercy of Jesus.”

“But the truth in its right form, and there is need to say the truth without wounding,” he continued.

He identified two questions: “How do you say the truth without wounding mercy? How do you be merciful without omitting the truth?”

Schönborn, who had flown to Rome after visiting refugee communities in northern Iraq, also spoke against the pan-European response to refugees fleeing the Middle East and to the U.S.-led wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Calling the European response to refugees a “hardening of the heart,” the cardinal said that instead of welcoming them, Europe is “making new iron curtains.”

Mentioning a visit he made with a sickly Muslim man living amid Christian refugees in Erbil, Iraq, Schönborn said the man had told him: “I am touched by the goodness of the closeness of my Christians neighbors who live here, who help me with my sickness, who sustain me.”

The cardinal said that because of the experience with the Christian refugees, the Muslim said he now felt that Jesus was “a true prophet.”

“I had tears,” said Schönborn. “This is a testimony of the effect of lived mercy.”

The cardinal concluded his talk with a reflection on Jesus’ parable on tenant farmers who rent land from a man but refuse to pay the rent, and even kill the people the man sends to collect the money due.

Jesus says the man himself will eventually visit the farm to kill the tenants in revenge and to rent the farm to others.

“I think ... that Jesus here explains the logic of the world,” said Schönborn, tying the parable to global events after the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

“I was frightened when President [George W.] Bush, as a first reaction, said there would be absolute war against terrorism,” said the cardinal. “I expected that he, a Christian, would say: ’We have need of penitence. We must convert ourselves.’ “
“What did the world do?” he asked. “The Iraq War, the Afghanistan War, and all that followed this tragedy, [these] useless wars.”

“The Christian refugees that I visited [in Iraq] ... are the result of this reaction to 9/11,” said Schönborn.

Jesus, the cardinal said, “acted differently.”

“To our lack of mercy, he responded with more mercy not with less mercy,” said Schönborn. “His response to the violence of the winemakers was the gift of his life.”

Novus Ordo= Heresy

Pro ‘gay’ Finnish Lutheran "bishop" received by Francis

On January 18, 2016, Pope Francis received Irja Askola, the first woman bishop of Helsinki, Finland, above. It happens that Askola, besides being a heretic, has a declared pro-"gay" agenda. In a speech addressing homosexuals at the European Forum of LGBT Christians in Alppila church in Helsinki (May 24, 2014), below first row, she affirmed:

”I wish you to feel welcome, very welcome, in our whole Church and in this Diocese. You carry with you something that we need in our Church: The wisdom to be sensitive to all those who have struggled to be accepted, to hear the voices that have been ignored and to recognize the beauty that has been forbidden to be appreciated.”

So, Bergoglio, promoting conciliar ecumenism, also reinforced femininsm and, once again, championed the homosexual propaganda. Three birds killed with one shot.

News reports here & here


Lutherans at the Vatican 02

Villanova Theology Course: Catholic Church ‘Instrument Of White Supremacy’

PETER HASSON

Villanova Theology Course: Catholic Church ‘Instrument Of White Supremacy’
A Villanova theology course will teach students that the Catholic Church is guilty of operating as an instrument of racial segregation and white supremacy — a problem which can only be fixed by embracing “black theology,” which is “[u]niquely capable of grasping the truth of the Gospel.”
“Racism and the Catholic Church” will be offered to Villanova students starting in the fall of 2016 and counts toward both a major in theology and a minor in “peace and justice.”
A course description offered by the university’s Center for Peace and Justice states that “Although the Catholic Church understands itself as the Body of Christ, the lived history of the church in the United States shows that the church has not been able to bring blacks and whites together as members of one body.”
“This course will explore the way in which the church has operated as an instrument of not racial unity and justice but racial segregation and white supremacy,” the description continues.
The claim that the Church isn’t the the united Body of Christ appears to be a direct contradiction of Church teaching — an explosive position from a university claiming to be “grounded in the wisdom of the Catholic intellectual tradition.”
A course description offered by Villanova’s theology department repeats many of the same charges but adds that the Catholic Church “has participated in white supremacy.” The description briefly concedes that the church “has also been mobilized as an instrument of resistance” to white supremacy but immediately after says that “the church surrendered to white supremacy.”
“Uniquely capable of grasping the truth of the Gospel, black theology makes a vital theological contribution to the global church,” the description states. “Inspired by their example, this course seeks to empower you to supply solutions to the theological problem of white supremacy.”


Antonio Banderas greets Pope Francis after the general audience

Even though he is a recognizable Hollywood star, Antonio Banderas patiently waited for his turn to greet Pope Francis.

He kissed his hand and conveyed this message.

"I bring you greetings from the Association of the Guilds of Malaga in Spain.”

The Pope also greeted the actor's current partner, Nicole Kimpel.

After the brief and emotional greeting, like everyone else, they both excitedly looked at the picture they took on their phone.
 

Francis should worry more about learning the Catholic Faith instead of meeting celebrities...

 

Where have we hard this before? Oh, that is right Vatican II!

Card. Schönborn: “Amoris Laetitia” is not a rupture, it is a development of doctrine

The room was filled with much curiosity and great expectation, as the Vatican unveiled  Pope Francis' apostolic exhortation, "Amoris Laetitia or "The Joy of Love.”

The Pope has written a comprehensive document that goes beyond the artificial debate on the incompatibility between doctrine and mercy. 

After two consecutive years, he has drawn together the work of the last two Synods on the Family. In "Amoris Laetitia” there is plenty of innovation and continuity.

CARD. CHRISTOPH SCHÖNBORN
Archbishop of Vienna
"For me, this document holds authentic novelties but not a rupture.”  

Accompanied by the Archbishop of Vienna, Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri, secretary general of the Synod of Bishops, points out an important key to interpreting the exhortation.

CARD. LORENZO BALDISSERI
Secretary General, Synod Bishops
"No one can be condemned forever, because that is not the logic of the Gospel.”

They remarked that the biggest development comes from the concept of  "discernment.” Each question of conscience should be resolved privately between the affected and a priest, especially in the most sensitive cases, such as those of divorced people in a new union.

CARD. CHRISTOPH SCHÖNBORN
Archbishop of Vienna
"What we are speaking of is a process of accompaniment and discernment which guides the faithful to an awareness of their own situation before God.”

CARD. LORENZO BALDISSERI
Secretary General, Synod Bishops
"Discernment takes place through conversation with the priest in the internal forum.”

But note that, above all,"Amoris Laetitia” is an invitation to conceive marriage as a desirable project for people, not a burden to bear throughout life.

CARD. CHRISTOPH SCHÖNBORN
Archbishop of Vienna
"We have been called to form consciences not to replace them.”

Remember, there is no single formula, but at the same time, these situations must be considered and cannot be transformed from the general rule. 


  Because washing the feet of Muslims was not enough...

CRUX- LOST THEIR MINDS

Pope’s ‘Ecumenism of the Here and Now’ pays off in Greece

  Migrants and refugees are seen on a beach behind a cross in a camp set up by volunteers near the port of Mytilini, in the Greek island of Lesbos, on Friday, April 15, 2016. Pope Francis will visit the island Saturday joined by Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew and the head of the Orthodox Church of Greece, Athens Archbishop Ieronymos II, a mission human rights groups hope will highlight the plight of refugees who fled their war-ravaged homes only to be denied entry to Europe.(AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)

The last time a pope was in Greece in 2001, I was part of the Vatican press corps covering John Paul II. Upon landing in Athens, I was asked by Greek TV to give a short interview – mostly because I spoke English, not for the quality of my insight, as experience would soon demonstrate.
Asked if John Paul would use his stop in Greece to apologize for outrages inflicted upon Orthodox Christians by Catholics, I replied that he’d already made such a mea culpa several times.
“Anyone expecting an apology on this trip,” I declared, “is likely to be disappointed.”
(In part, my confidence was based on the fact that we had advance texts of the pope’s remarks, and there was no such apology to be found.)
Greek national TV network played the interview just before broadcasting John Paul’s meeting with Archbishop Christodoulos of Athens and All Greece – in which, naturally, the pontiff did exactly what I’d just predicted he wouldn’t, apologizing for “occasions past and present when sons and daughters of the Catholic Church have sinned, by action or omission, against their Orthodox brothers and sisters.”
Believe me, Francis has nothing on John Paul as a “Pope of Surprises”!
In truth, I should have known John Paul would drop in something along those lines, given the hostility many Greek Orthodox exuded to the presence of a pope.
In the days leading up to his arrival, thousands of Greek Orthodox made a pilgrimage to see a statue of a bleeding Madonna in the hills outside Athens – weeping, they believed, from her pain over the arrival on Orthodox soil of the archenemy of true Christianity.
A protest march was staged while the pope was in town, featuring icons and the Byzantine flag. Banners in Greek and Italian said: “Get the anti-Christ pope out of Orthodox Greece!”
What’s striking about Pope Francis’ outing to Greece Saturday, in the company of both Ecumenical Orthodox Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople and Archbishop Ieronymous II of Athens, who succeeded Christodoulos in 2008, is how free it’s been so far of such fireworks.
Granted, it’s a lightning-quick stop on the island of Lesbos, intended to make a statement in defense of the waves of refugees and immigrants washing up there, at a time when Europe’s political climate seems to be drifting in the direction of closing doors.
Nonetheless, given sensitivities in Greece to perceived Roman imperialism, the fact that a pope could visit the country and spark precious little blowback, even from hardline Orthodox voices, is striking. (Ieronymous did advise Francis not to turn his stop into a “PR show,” but that was in the context of welcoming him and urging European governments to listen to the pope.)


Francis apologizes to Moslem “refugees” (invaders) for not being welcoming enough! 

There are several things in life Francis loves.  The first thing he loves is to make videos.  For someone who is supposed to be humble, he certainly never exhibits this behavior.  Francis’ second love is uttering heretical statements.  His last love is bringing Moslems into Europe so they can conquer it or in his words words revitalize it.  We are not joking he really has said publicly several times that the Moslem invaders will bring a new life and spirit into Europe.

In a video released this morning at the Annual Report of the Astalli Center, Francis addreses the board and the refugees temporarily living at the Astalli Center.  The occasion was the 35th anniversary of the founding of the Astalli Center, by the 28th Superior General of the Society of Jesus, Fr. Pedro Arrupe.   The Astalli Center is located in Rome and is run by the Jesuit Refugee Service.

Some of what Francis said,

“(We) walk together, as one people. And this is very well and good! We must continue with courage. I was a stranger and you welcomed me.  I was a stranger... Each of you, refugees who knock on our doors has the face of God, and is the flesh of Christ.”

“Your experience of pain and hope reminds us that we are all strangers and pilgrims on this earth...you fled from your homeland because of oppression, of war, of an enviroment disfigured from pollution and desertification, or the unjust distribution of the planet's resources...”

“Too many times we have not received you!  Forgive us the closure and the indifference of our society and those who fear the change of life and mentality that is required by your presence. You are treated as a burden, a problem, a cost, when instead you are a gift. You witness how our God is gracious and merciful, who knows how to turn the evils and injustices of which you suffer into a good for everyone. Because each of you can be a bridge between distant peoples, which makes possible an encounter between different cultures and religions, a way to rediscover our common humanity.”


‘humble’ Francis apologizing to the Moslem invaders


Need I say more?... Fr. Longenecker
Please pray for his conversion

Pro-life Catholics need to oppose the death penalty


I’ve often wondered why the death penalty was called “capital punishment,” and then it dawned on me that “capital” means “head.” Sure enough, the term refers back to the Roman system of law which deemed certain crimes worthy of death by beheading.
The rise of executions is therefore a chilling reminder of just how vibrant ancient barbarism is in the world today.
Amnesty International recently reported that state authorized executions rose by fifty percent in 2015, the highest rate in twenty five years. According to AI’s annual report, the dramatic increase was fueled by three nations – Iran, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia – who together were responsible for nearly 90 percent of executions in 2015.
The United States had fewer executions, but was still in fourth place on Amnesty International’s list. While these nations have bumped up the numbers of executions, China still holds the top place. Amnesty International cannot obtain detailed statistics, but estimates that China executed thousands of prisoners in 2015.
At its primal level, the human spirit demands capital punishment. The desire for revenge is sparked when a horrible crime is committed. The cycle of revenge declines into brutal vigilantism and endless feuds, prompting the remark attributed to Gandhi, “If the law is ‘an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth’ the whole world would soon be blind and toothless.”
Proponents of capital punishment would argue that the cycle of revenge is avoided by the state administering a just retribution for crime. “The law is objective” they argue, “certain crimes have certain consequences.”
The gospel of Jesus Christ, however, sets an even higher standard. In Matthew 5:38-39 Jesus says, “You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth,’ But I say to you, do not resist an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also.”
Is it possible to live by such a high ideal? The Catholic Church  teaches that no standard of the gospel is impossible, and this is why Catholic teaching on the subject of capital punishment has developed.
While the Catholic Church traditionally permitted the death sentence, it did not demand it. Since the pontificate of John Paul II, official Catholic teaching has moved closer to the gospel ideal.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church echoes John Paul’s encyclical letter Evangelism Vitae saying that while the use of capital punishment is not excluded, in modern societies the need for it is  “very rare, if not practically non-existent.”
Catholic social teaching outlines the objectives of criminal punishment as being retribution, protection of the innocent, rehabilitation and deterrence. Therefore some would argue that retribution demands capital punishment, but this equates retribution with revenge. The two concepts are different.
Retribution is the just consequence meted out by the state for a particular crime. If a life is taken in murder, for example, a life must be given. However, this does not demand the death penalty. A life is also given by the offender receiving and serving a life sentence.
With a life sentence the retribution is fulfilled, but the other objectives of justice are also fulfilled: society is adequately protected, crime is deterred and the offender has time to be rehabilitated and repent.
It is the mark of a civilized and Christian society that all four objectives for justice be pursued, and it is a disgrace that the United States is not only fourth highest on the list of countries with executions, but that the prison population in the United States is far higher per-capita than every other country in the world but one.
What does it say about modern day America that we top the list of executions with Communist China, Iran, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia?
Despite the upturn in executions worldwide, Amnesty International also reports that an increasing number of countries are moving towards abolition of the death penalty. In 2015, four countries—Madagascar, Fiji, Suriname and Congo— joined the 102 countries that have abolished capital punishment, and Mongolia adopted a new criminal code outlawing the death penalty which kicks in later this year.
Catholics famously lead the pro-life battle against abortion. Certainly it is not right to equate capital punishment with abortion, because abortion is the premeditated killing of an innocent and defenseless child.
Nevertheless, pro-life Catholics who oppose abortion should also oppose the death penalty and campaign for mercy, remembering the standard Jesus set in the gospel and the words from the prophet Ezekiel: “I do not take any pleasure in the death of the wicked” says the Lord, “Rather that he should turn from his ways and live.”


Marx thinks Jesus "hands out" Mercy like little debbie hands out tastycakes!  Modernists do not believe repentance is apart of the equation...


Cardinal Marx: “No Situation in Which Someone Is Excluded” 

On 17 April, the head of the German Bishops’ Conference, Cardinal Reinhard Marx – who is the archbishop of Munich – gave a homily during Holy Mass in Fürstenfeldbruck, Bavaria. In this homily, the cardinal – who is also a member of the pope’s “Council of Nine Cardinals” – said that “there is no situation in which someone is excluded forever [MH: not even in hell, finally?].”
In his eyes, the Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetita  now invites and encourages priests in their pastoral care of the faithful to “lead to the Sacraments” and to “integrate [them]with the help of the Sacraments.” One can only look at one’s own “wounds of one’s heart and life”, says Marx, “if one is not himself in an impasse.” That is to say, if someone shows that troubled person “a path into mercy, into reconciliation, into an integration into the community,” then he may be helped.
According to Marx, “there is no situation in which I am excluded from the Mercy of God, if I open myself up to that Mercy.” If one opens oneself up that Mercy, one will experience it with such a power that “we change ourselves, even then when we live in [MH: sinful?] situations that we ourselves cannot change at all.” This applies, in his eyes, not only to family situations, but also to professional and other situations “which we cannot change without adding another sin – [that is to say]confusing situations, complex situations.”
Cardinal Marx added that Pope Francis, in his exhortation, did not “have to change the great doctrinal teaching” and that he, rather, “referred this teaching back to its kernel, to its language which comes from the Gospels.” Marx himself proposes to apply the motto according to Amoris Laetita: “Live out that part from the Gospels which you can live out in this situation, in this life, in these specific circumstances in which you find yourself.”
Cardinal Marx made it clear with this unequivocal statement that he approves fully of Pope Francis’ Apostolic Exhortation and its admittance of “remarried” divorcees to the Sacraments. He had intended a more progressive approach all along and had even ominously said only a year ago, in February of 2015, that Germany is “not just a subsidiary of Rome,” and he then added, indeed, that the German bishops could and would go their own independent path, if Rome were to decide in a different manner.
It therefore seems that this independent path is now not necessary any more for Cardinal Marx.

Planet X....Come quickly...