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"Ecumenical Follies" Update

Kasper and the Ecumenical Delusion

by Christopher A. Ferrara

A January 13, 2006 report by Cindy Wooden of Catholic News Service provides yet another example of the utter absurdity of the never-ending, but utterly pointless, "ecumenical venture" launched at Vatican II.

Wooden reports on a recent address by top Vatican ecumenist Cardinal Walter Kasper, whose heretical utterances (including a denial of the historicity of the Apostolic Succession) have been chronicled in this column. Kasper, reports Wooden, told an ecumenical congress in Durham, England that "While many of the doctrinal differences that divided Christians for centuries are close to being resolved, different approaches to modern ethical questions are making Christian unity appear as distant as ever."

First of all, there is no sign whatever that "doctrinal differences" between the Catholic Church and the Protestants and Orthodox are "close to being resolved." For the only resolution that is possible is acceptance of Catholic teaching by the non-Catholic party, and our non-Catholic "ecumenical dialogue partners" are farther than ever from such acceptance. Quite the contrary, the process of "ecumenical dialogue" constantly reinforces the false impression that if the non-Catholic parties wait long enough, the Catholic Church will alter Her teaching to accommodate their errors.

At any rate, Kasper’s admission that "different approaches to modern ethical questions" are making "Christian unity appear more distant than ever" is an implicit indictment of the entire program of "ecumenical dialogue." What is the point of seeking "Christian unity" with those who cannot even accept the Catholic Church’s teaching on the moral law  —  which is to say, God’s teaching on the moral law? Why should the Catholic Church waste even one additional minute on "ecumenical dialogue" over such questions as the theological status of Mary with people who cannot even agree that abortion is murder and that sodomy is an abominable perversion?

Cardinal Kasper told the conference that he was "very sad we are not able to speak with one voice on these issues to a world that needs to hear." The poor thing. He’s sad that his "dialogue partners" continue to believe that murder in the womb is acceptable, that homosexuals can be "married," that euthanasia is licit, and so forth. He is not outraged at their moral blindness despite some forty years of meandering ecumenical palaver. He is not mindful that he is dealing with people who are impervious to reason and in open rebellion against God’s law. No, he’s just sad.

Worse still, Kasper said that "Differences among Catholics, Orthodox, Anglicans and Protestants over issues such as homosexual activity, abortion, euthanasia and other moral questions ‘are not on the top of the hierarchy of truths’ -- like the belief in Jesus as savior is – ‘but they are very emotional and, therefore, very divisive.’" So, Kasper reduces the commands of divine law to mere "emotional issues" rather than the very test of our obedience to the very Savior our "dialogue partners" profess to recognize, even as they mock Him with their heresies and immoralities. Did not our Lord Himself say "If you love Me, you will keep My commandments"?

Undeterred by reality, however, Kasper "told conference participants that believing Christians cannot give up hope for Christian unity because church division is ‘a sin before God and a scandal before the world.’" But whose sin is it, Cardinal Kasper? And who is causing the scandal? The answer, obviously, is those who adamantly reject the teaching authority of the Catholic Church, even as the representatives of that authority continue to waste their time in ecumenical dialogue with these dissidents. For that is what they are and always have been  —  dissidents, who reject any authority outside of their own obdurate will as expressed in the corrupt human institutions they dare to call "churches."

Kasper, according to Wooden, went on to state that "after 40 years of what appeared to be major progress toward unity, ecumenical dialogue has come up against serious, unforeseen obstacles." What progress? There has been none whatsoever, but only moral and doctrinal regression on the part of our so-called "dialogue partners." And can it really be the case that these "obstacles" were "unforeseen"? Was it not obvious from the beginning that ecumenism would fail? It would fail because it refuses to defend what Pope Pius XII’s Holy Office described in 1949 as "the teaching of the encyclicals of the Roman Pontiffs on the return of the dissidents to the Church" and "the only true union which is accomplished with the return of the dissidents to the only true Church of Christ."

But Cardinal Kasper will have none of that. The blind guide continues resolutely to stumble toward the ditch, leading who knows how many others in his trail. As Wooden reports, he told the conference that "he knows the Roman Catholic Church has many things to learn from other Christian communities." Utter nonsense. The one true Church of Christ has nothing to learn from human institutions founded by mere men in a rebellion against divine authority. One might as well assert that God has much to learn from man! This is precisely why the Holy Office of Pius XII condemned the opinion that "in returning to the Church they [the dissidents] are bringing to it something substantial which it has hitherto lacked." They are bring nothing but their souls  —  to be saved in the one ark of salvation, along with ours.

But Kasper continues openly to reject the return of the dissidents, advising the conference that "The Catholic commitment to ecumenism… is not based on wanting to draw all Christians into the Catholic fold, nor does it seek to create a new church, drawing on the best of each of the ecumenical partners." More nonsense. If the aim of ecumenism is neither the return of the dissidents nor the creation of a new church, then what is the third alternative? It is an illusion the practitioners of ecumenism incessantly pursue toward an ever-receding ecumenical horizon. This pursuit of an illusion is the very essence of the ecumenical madness that has gripped the Church since Vatican II. And Cardinal Kasper is doing everything in his power to maintain this insane delusion in the Church.

May Our Lady of Fatima intercede soon to give us a Pope and prelates who will end this ecumenical madness and restore the human element of the Catholic Church to sanity.