by Christopher A. Ferrara
January 5, 2017
Icon of the Phony Synod
Remember him? It's Cardinal Lorenzo Baldisseri, General Secretary of the Phony Synod, who, in the process of stage-managing that fraud upon the Church, was exposed for literally stealing copies of the Five Cardinals Book in which Cardinal Burke and four other cardinals defended the Church's traditional teaching on the impossibility of admitting public adulterers in "second marriages" to Holy Communion. It was Baldisseri who ordered the book removed from the mailboxes of Synod fathers at the same time he and the rest of his cabal were manipulating the Synod to undermine the very teaching the Five Cardinals were defending.
The cabal having accomplished the aim of its conspiracy with the publication of Amoris Laetitia, for which the Phony Synod was mere window dressing, Baldisseri now openly declares victory for the subversives under the rubric of that utter novelty known as "discernment," introduced in Chapter 8 of Amoris. "Discernment," so we are now told, means that negative exceptionless precepts of the natural law regarding sexual morality (including "thou shall not commit adultery") can admit of pastoral "exceptions" to be "discerned" in "certain cases." As Baldisseri states:
"Amoris Laetitia… uses the word discernment above all in Chapter 8, connecting it to two other words in the title: accompany and integrate… In fact, when love no longer corresponds to the form of sacramental marriage, the Church takes care of these wounded people, that they might rediscover the way of the Gospel…"
Notice how those involved in objectively immoral unions are depicted as "wounded people," as if to suggest that they are the innocent victims of some sort of horrible accident rather than their own deliberate choices, and that we must provide a kind of First Aid to these "wounded people" by "discerning" their situations, meaning — as if anyone didn't know it by now — allowing them to receive sacrilegious Holy Communion without an amendment of life.
The account of Baldisseri's remarks continues with the deception that animated the entire "synodal journey": i.e., that no change of moral doctrine and related practice is involved in this subversive enterprise. According to the Italian blog Sinodo 2015:
"This does not mean, the cardinal specified, that 'the regulations and doctrine of the Church' undergo variations that do not take account of 'traditional moral reflections'… [but] taking account of the 'general norm' [!], 'particular situations must be considered in their specificity'… [I]n certain cases it is foreseen that this also includes access to the sacraments for so-called wounded couples, in particular in the case of the divorced and remarried."
This is classic Modernist doubletalk: the teaching has not changed but now we apply it differently to different people — a radical change! The very idea that the Church's moral doctrine and related discipline are mere "general norms" that can vary in application according to "particular situations" destroys in practice both the doctrine and the discipline, as both are rooted in divine precepts of the natural law to which there are no exceptions. It can never, under any circumstances, be permissible to engage in the intrinsically evil act of sexual relations outside of marriage. Therefore, it can never under any circumstances be permissible to receive Holy Communion while habitually engaging in such relations, as in the case of divorced and "remarried" persons.
Accordingly, as the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith declared unequivocally during the reign of John Paul II:
"[I]f the prior marriage of two divorced and remarried members of the faithful was valid, under no circumstances can their new union be considered lawful and therefore reception of the sacraments is intrinsically impossible. The conscience of the individual is bound to this norm without exception."
Baldisseri has to know that he is engaged in deliberate deception, for he is certainly aware that the Church has never taught — indeed cannot teach — that the precept "thou shalt not commit adultery" is variable according to circumstances. He has to know that he is attempting to defraud the faithful by suggesting that the Church can accept situation ethics, which would reduce her entire moral edifice to rubble in practice and terminate her very mission, if that were possible, by reducing her to yet another religious organization that has died the death of the sexual Zeitgeist.
Baldisseri is, quite simply, an ecclesiastical conman who is a major player in a long-running sting operation whose aim is to strip the Church of the Truth that is her wealth and her irreplaceable patrimony. My tone here is harsh, even brutal, but this is no time for undue deference to prelates of the sort that Our Lord Himself warned us would attack His Church: "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in the clothing of sheep, but inwardly they are ravening wolves." (Matt 7:15)
Or perhaps Our Lord's prophecy does not apply precisely to the likes of Baldisseri. For there is nothing inward about his malign intentions; they are written all over his face.