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"Ecumenical Follies" Update

More Nonsense on "Ecumenism"

by Christopher A. Ferrara

On January 25, 2005 Zenit.org reported yet another of those maddening statements on the supposed "progress" of "ecumenism"  —  that strange, ill-defined ism which invaded the Church forty years ago and now infects almost every aspect of Catholic life, like a virus in the Body of Christ.

Zenit reports that Father James Puglisi, director of Rome's Pro Unione Center, commenting on this year’s "Week of Prayer for Christian Unity," said that "We can pass through the door of ecumenism only on our knees."

The "door" of ecumenism? What in Heaven’s name is the door of ecumenism? What is on the other side of this mysterious door? Is it some kind of big surprise for Catholics?

Apparently so. For according to Fr. Puglisi, "What we are dealing with at this time is a request for systemic change, [a] conversion of churches and their structures including the Catholic Church." So, when we get on the other side of the "door of ecumenism" we are going to find a Catholic Church whose very structure has been "converted" in some way. But in what way? Well, if they told us that, it wouldn’t be a surprise, would it?

And how is ecumenism going on the doctrinal front? After forty years of ecumenism are the non-Catholic participants in "ecumenical dialogue" any closer to accepting the truths of the Catholic faith? Of course not: "On the theological level we must admit that things are moving more slowly, and we might say cautiously," said Puglisi. After 40 years of endless palaver with these non-Catholics, things are still "moving slowly." But moving where? Where else: toward the "door of ecumenism."

Puglisi went on to say that "historically the structures of the Church have evolved according to the needs, the challenge, that the world put to the Church which, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, had to respond to these in each generation. This is how the Church fulfilled its role in society."

Is that so? I have a number of Catholic history books in my library, and in none of them do I find the Church’s structures "evolving" each generation under the "guidance of the Holy Spirit." What I find, instead, is a hierarchical society, established by Jesus Christ, with the Pope at its head, the bishops in their dioceses under the Pope, and the priests under the bishops, with the laity being subject to hierarchical authority. In fact, what I find is a divinely established monarchy: a kingdom with the Pope as its ultimate ruler  —  or the Kingdom of God, which is what Our Lord called His Church.

But Fr. Puglisi and his fellow Catholic ecumenists have other plans. According to Puglisi, the monarchical constitution of the Church was merely "adopted" by the Church in response to the existence of constitutional monarchies that "were a model in society" at the time of the 1917 Code of Canon Law. Yes, he seriously expects us to believe that the structure of the Church I have just described, the one She has had for 2,000 years, was only recently adopted.

Puglisi assures us that the hierarchical Church was abolished at Vatican II: "The Second Vatican Council reoriented this by the changes it made in the dogmatic constitution on the Church, ‘Lumen Gentium,’ whereby the ministry is located within the Church and not above the Church." Of course, the Church never taught that the clergy are "above the Church," but rather, than in terms of authority and function they are above the laity while being themselves within the Church.

And why does the Church still exhibit the very structure She has always had, if Vatican II supposedly changed all that? According to Puglisi, this "might mean that there has not been a real acceptance of Vatican II and its implications …" And where exactly do we find the precise "implications" of Vatican II for the structure of the Church? You guessed it: on the other side of the "door of ecumenism."

How much longer the Church will be in the grip of this destructive nonsense, only God knows. But this much is clear: "ecumenism," whatever it means, is at the very heart of the apostasy predicted in the Third Secret of Fatima  —  the apostasy that, as Cardinal Ciappi revealed, begins at the top.