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My Catholic Convictions

    Some of the pages have startled many people, specially Roman Catholic brothers and sisters, about my questioning of some of the doctrines of the institution of the Catholic Church.  However, I want too point out that if you look at my arguments carefully, my decision to differ on certain issues is not made at random, but none with a concise reasoning that leads me to believe that in these subjects the Church is wrong.

    I cannot endorse something that my (informed) conscience tells me is wrong and that such actions are unsupported and unjustified.  I remember my Catholic friends the most ancient Catholic traditions that is to obey conscience.  If a Christian or a theologian is all of the sudden confronted with a conscience dilemma it is best to follow conscience.  The true Catholic and the true Christian follows an instructed conscience, even if he or she is threatened with excommunion.  We have to remember what St. Paul said:  "[. . .] for whatever that is not from the conscience of faith, it is sin" (Romans 14,23).

    We have also to remember the words of Pope Innocent III, perhaps one of the most tyrannical popes in history;  he said:  "Anything that doesn't come from faith, is sin, and everything done against conscience leads to hell [. . .] because nobody can obey in that a judge against God, but has to carry the burden of excommunion in humility" (Corpus Iudis Canonici 11,287; cf. 11,908).

    Sebastián Merkle, a Church historian, states:  "According to this, St. Thomas Aquinas, the great teacher of the order of preachers, and with him a series of scholars, would have taught that an excommunicated person because of wrong suppositions has to die in excommunion before obeying a superior law that, according to his understanding, does not correspond to reality.  To obey would go against truth, which is something that must not be betrayed, even if it is to not produce a scandal" (Merkle 472 ff., Thomas Aquinas In IV Sent. dist. 38, expos. textus in fine).  In fact, he stated clearly:  "Now sometimes the things commanded by a superior are against God, therefore superiors are not to be obeyed in all things" (Summa Theologica II. q.2 a.4).

    Cardinal Belarmino, who exhalts the papacy during the period of the counter-reform, says the following:  it is permissible for a Christian that if the Pope attacks you physically to resist against him, it is permissible also to resist him when he attacks spiritually, if he sows confusion in the State, and, most of all, if he tries to destroy the Church; it would be a passive resistance, not carrying out his orders, and stop him from carrying out his will.  He states explicitly:  "When the Supreme Pontiff pronounces a sentence of excommunication which is unjust or null, it must not be accepted, without, however, straying from the respect due to the Holy See" (Belarmino lib. II, cap. 29, I, 607).

    St. Thomas Aquinas also stated:

Where there is a proximate danger to the faith, prelates must be rebuked, even publicly, by subjects.  Thus, St. Paul who was subject to St. Peter, rebuked him publicly (Commentary on the Epistle to the Galatians 2:14).

Pope Leo XIII stated:

And there is no reason why those who obey God rather than men should be accused of refusing obedience; for if the will of rulers is opposed to the will and the laws of God, these rulers exceed the bounds of their own power and pevert justice, nor can their authority then be valid, which, when there is no justice, is null (Diuturnum Illud.)

    What I do and say, I do and say because of conscience, and I follow it, also having my sight on Jesus Christ all the time and my faith.  Without wanting to sound arrogant, I can say that following conscience, which has been upheld by Church's Magisterium, makes me perhaps more Catholic than many other people that despite their own conscience, and in the name of self-righteousness, with a "holier than thou" attitude, follow blindly what they are told without even considering thinking about what they are ordered to do or believe.  Those will be the people whom Jesus was talking about in the Gospels:

Many will say to me on that day:  "Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name?  Did we not drive out demons in your name?  Did we not do mighty deeds in your name?" Then I will declare to them solemly, "I never knew you.  Depart from me, you evildoers" (Matt. 7,22-23).

I applaud people who disagree with me and obey the Church because of conscience, because they do it out of faith and humility.  But I don't praise people who obey the Church because of pride and arrogance only to show themselves as being "right" because they follow the Church, and condemn anybody who doesn't think the same as they do.

    I hope this clear up why do I differ from the Church concerning some issues and still consider myself a Catholic . . .  even if I'm excommunicated in the future.

God bless you and everyone who visits my site!

Works Cited

Berlamino, R.  De summo pontifice.  Ingolstadt, 1586-1593.  Paris, 1870.

Corpus Iuris Canonici, ed. AE. Friedberg (Lipsiae 1881).

Merkle, S.  Der Streit um Savonarola, in "Hochland" 25 (1928).

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