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A ‘Church not hostile to modern world’

This refers to Archbishop Paciano Aniceto’s reaction to Aries Rufo’s book: “Altar of Secrets: Sex, Politics and Money in the Philippine Catholic Church.” In defense of his administration, the archbishop said: “It involves discernment that builds and promotes a lasting value. This value is both human and divine, (involving) the will of God and the good of the person. Its application is tempered by circumstances, relation and context” (“Prelature refutes book’s assertions on Pampanga clergy,” News, 6/24/13).

While the good archbishop is not remiss in applying Church law (Canon Law) to his sexually abusive clergymen, I presume that he also must have realized that the “double lives” of some Kapampangan priests is just the  tip of the iceberg vis-à-vis the sexual scandals wreaked by a number of Roman Catholic popes, cardinals, bishops and priests in many parts of the world after celibacy (being single/unmarried) was imposed on priests in the 12th century.

I pray that clergymen, who have the vocation to the priesthood and have the gift/charism of celibacy, continue Christ’s pastoral missions despite the odds. Likewise, I pray that Filipino clergymen who, during ordination, vowed obedience to their bishops but are devoid of the gift of celibacy, will not become “Nuns’ Stallions” in the future—meaning, priests who look specifically for nuns/religious sisters as their sex victims.

In addition, considering that the Roman Catholic Church is still a pyramidal structure, obligatory celibacy is the option of an entrenched minority in power, imposing it on an overwhelming majority that does not want it. Thus, to maintain such situation, many ecclesiastical officials, acting as “branch managers” of Rome, are more than willing to nullify the Word of God and uphold a human law (mandatory celibacy) as more important. In his book: “Lead Us Not Into Temptation,” Jason Berry wrote: “The presumption in Rome (Vatican Curia) is that a bishop will keep bad news from becoming publicly known. When a bishop fails at that, Rome looks upon it with disfavor.” And Archbishop Aniceto just faithfully did that!

In the New Testament, it is very clear that Christ never imposed celibacy on his apostles. All, save John, were married. Even the Apostle Paul decided, only for himself, not to marry for the sake of his missionary work. Following this tradition, early Christianity, from the first to the 11th century, both in the West and East, did not have a celibate priesthood. Bishops, priests, and deacons were married. Celibacy was a special commitment made by men and women to a vowed life that was seen as anticipating the reign of God “where there will be no marrying or giving in marriage.” Most of those who took the vow of celibacy were not priests. In other words, celibacy and priesthood were two distinct vocations. This practice remains to this day in the Eastern Catholic Church.

As people of God, bishops, priests and laity are celebrating the “Year of Faith.” May this observance remind us that the Church we stand for is not the church of Constantine the Great, nor the church of Pope Gregory VII, nor the church of the Second Lateran; but the Church of the Vatican Council II and Pope John XXIII, whose canonization is underway—the Church that is not hostile to the modern world.

—DANNY A. QUINTANA
member, Small Faith Community

(BASIC-FARC), Tacloban City


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Short URL: http://opinion.inquirer.net/?p=59889

  • http://romano-katoliko.blogspot.com/ Romano Katoliko

    “Jesus Christ [& His inseparable body - the Church, Eph. 1.23], yesterday, today; and the same forever” (Heb.13.8). Those who claim that they are the “Church of Vatican II” which is no longer the Catholic Church prior to Vatican II – ruled by a “Sovereign” Pontiff crowned with the Papal tiara “for obedience to the Faith” (Rom. 1.5) and built on the Traditional Rite of the Mass – have already separated themselves from Christ Who Is the Head of the Catholic Church. Not without theological basis then did the venerable late Archbishop Lefebvre simply describe this Neo-’Catholic’ [Dis-]Order of Vatican II: “a schismatic ‘church’ [in its true formal canonical sense].”

    “Therefore, brethren, stand fast; and hold the traditions ['paradoseis'] which you have learned, whether by word, or by… epistle…. And we charge you… that you withdraw yourselves from every brother walking disorderly, and not according to the traditions which they have received…” (2 Thess. 2.14; 3.6).

    P.S.: It is true, Christ did not “impose” celibacy for it is not a precept but a counsel – a distinction always lost to non-Catholics; and though a mere counsel, Christ said to those who were elected, “purchased from among men, the first-fruits to God and to the Lamb,” to “follow the Lamb withersoever He goeth” (Apoc. 14.4): “He that can take it, let him take it” (Mt. 19.12). And so the first among them, Peter, who was married, followed Christ and lived like the rest – as “are virgins” (Apoc. 14.4): “everyone… left… father, or mother, or [omitted by non-Catholics:] wife, or children…” (Mt. 19.29).

    • http://romano-katoliko.blogspot.com/ Romano Katoliko

      The pretended reason why the Neo-Catholic hierarchy, especially here in the secularized Philippines, hate* the Traditional Rite of the Mass in Latin is for the ‘faithful’ to ‘understand’ what is going on in their service in the vernacular (though this was condemned “ex cathedra” by Pope Pius VI in his Bull “Auctorem Fidei” 219 years in advance in 1794). But no; crucially, the hidden real reason is that for the unsuspecting flock – too busy with their secular pre-occupations for a ‘comfortable’ short life – imbibe the revolutionary 1789 ‘Enlightenment’ principles SUBTLY tucked in the documents of Vatican II which the Conciliar Protestantized New ‘M[e]ss’ professes in its de-Catholicized rubrics and formulary of prayers (following the Roman axiom “lex orandi, lex credendi” – that is, how one prays/worships shows what one believes). Verily indeed, from what the author above professes, what the nominal ‘Catholics’ – even the rest of the ‘phenomenologistic’ anti-Catholic world (who go by what-appears) – knew and ‘understood’ was something else: “something that resembles [the Catholic Church] but was not the real thing” (Dr. Bella Dodd, ex-SecGen of the US Communist Party who embraced the traditional Catholic Confession, before the US Congress “Un-American Activities” Committee in the late 50s, in “The Year 1929″ by Ignis-Dei at blog spot dot com.

      * They could somehow tolerate it with Pope Benedict XVI’s compromise “motu proprio”: it’s not going to be held as “the norm” anyways but only as an extra-ordinary [that is, in the language of the 'Modernists', a mere fringe 'obsolete'] Rite – a “material” contradiction, however, at the least, of what Pope St. Pius V irrevocably decreed “ex-cathedra” in his Bull “Quo Primum”: that the Traditional Rite of the Mass in Latin is “THE norm” in the Roman Rite Church “in perpetuity.”



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