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Vatican Admits Catholic Lutheran Accord is No Accord

by Christopher A. Ferrara

The Vatican has just issued a “caution” concerning what was supposed to have been a great “ecumenical breakthrough”: the so-called Catholic-Lutheran accord on the issue of justification (the doctrine of how man is made just in the sight of God). A joint statement by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and the Pontifical Council for Christian Unity warns that the Catholic-Lutheran accord “can only be understood properly in light of the accompanying statements put forward by the Holy See.”

Now this is very curious. How can there be an “accord” between the Catholics and the Lutherans on justification if Catholics are obliged to interpret the agreement in keeping with statements by the Holy See that the Lutherans do not accept? Imagine a contract between the seller and the buyer of an automobile. The contract says that the seller will provide a “fully loaded” Buick. The Seller says that “fully loaded” must be understood to mean a base model with a tank full of gas, while the buyer insists it means all the options, including power seats and windows. Where is the agreement? Obviously, there is none.

Even more curious, the Vatican notice says — at one and the same time — that “the Lutheran conception is no longer condemned by the Catholic Church,” but that “ the teachings of the Council of Trent and Vatican I were not being changed.” Just a moment, please: the teaching of Trent condemned the Lutheran conception of justification (by faith alone and without reference to freely performed good works under the influence of grace) and declared that he who professes it is anathema. If the condemnation has been dropped, then has there not been a change of teaching? What am I missing here?

According to Zenit, the Vatican notice says that by avoiding misinterpretation of the Catholic-Lutheran accord “both groups can protect the future development of common theological positions.” Both groups? The Catholic Church is not a “group,” but the Mystical Body of Christ, which speaks with the authority of God Almighty. God does not work out “common theological positions” with a “church” founded by a psychotic rebel priest who ran off and married a nun. God is not a theological negotiator, and neither is His Magisterium.

“Serious doctrinal disagreements remain between the faiths, the Holy See points out . . .” Serious doctrinal disagreements? The Lutherans who signed this “accord” condone the murder of children in the womb. These birds don’t even follow the natural law, let alone correct Christian doctrine, yet the Vatican wastes its time signing useless pieces of paper with their negotiating committees, who declare that their understanding of the piece of paper is quite different from our understanding. Meaning we are right back where we started with Luther.

How much longer will this nonsense go on? When will the post-conciliar Vatican remember how to speak as the Fathers of the Council Trent spoke, and the fathers of every other council before Vatican II: Exactly this is true and anything else is false, and whoever will not believe the truth but rather holds obstinately to what is false, let him be anathema. Our Lady of Fatima was no less plainspoken herself.