Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Did The Pope Blaspheme During Yesterday's Homily?

When I wrote yesterday about the Pope's homily and mentioned the banana-peel quip, I completely overlooked the real horror of what he said.  I thank other bloggers, namely "That The Bones You Have Crushed May Thrill", for opening my eyes.  I said then that I failed to see how a banana peel would be linked to someone realizing they were a sinner; now I realize that the banana peel was used as a metaphor for temptation to sin.

Here's the original quote: "But Lord, throw a banana peel in front of them, so that they will take a good fall, and feel shame that they are sinners, and so encounter You, [and realize] that You are the Saviour. Many times a sin will make us feel shame, and make us encounter the Lord, Who pardons us, as the sick who were there and went to the Lord for healing."

Leaving aside the obvious lack of charity and respect that the pope exhibits towards faithful, devout, pious Catholics, let's consider some other fundamental points:
  • Our Lord may allow us to sin, because we have free will and He honors that which He gave to us.
  • Our Lord also allows us to sin, but He will never directly will us to sin for (this is important!) He cannot directly will evil to occur.  It is against His perfect, sinless nature to do so.
  • Our Lord will never tempt us to sin.  If a person deliberately tempts one to sin (throwing the proverbial banana peel) that action would itself be sin - probably mortal, for its deliberation and malice towards the one being tempted.
  • The pope alleges a final purpose in causing the banana-peel target to "encounter the Lord", but as he should well know, the ends never justifies an inherently immoral means.  To deliberately tempt someone to sin is always immoral.
  • In his supposed "prayer", the pope is asking God to commit sin Himself.  This is not prayer - it is nothing short of BLASPHEMY.
Catholic Encyclopedia gives an excellent treatment of blasphemy.  I think that what the Pope did yesterday is to engage in the heretical form of blasphemy.

I am reminded of a conversation that occurred between King St Louis IX of France and his holy mother, Queen Blanche.  She said to him that "I'd rather see you dead at my feet than guilty of one mortal sin".  Do we dare doubt that Our Lord's abhorrence of sin is less than Blanche's?

I am stunned.  This isn't a mere gaffe.  I said yesterday that I think this homily is part of a campaign to get us to accept, or at least be indifferent to, the reception of Holy Communion by those living in mortal sin.  But now I realize that he is presenting a distorted image of God Himself.  But come to think of it, he is the Vicar of Christ who has been doing that for some time: the clown noses, the beach balls on the altars, the discarding of papal traditions.  I never dreamed it would come to this, but now he's painting a horrible picture of God Himself - at least he did so yesterday. I pray we don't see future episodes from the Vicar of Christ.

Let's double down on our Rosaries (I hope that doesn't sound too pelagian) for our poor Mother Church needs them.


  1. I don't think it's blasphemy. Consider the "felix culpa" or the "O happy fault.

    1. God does not deliberately will someone to sin, nor plot that that a person does so. He'd be committing an act inherently evil. To pray that God commit evil is blasphemy.

    2. You are right in a strict theological sense, but the substance of the pope's quote is that sometimes when self-righteous people fall off their high horses, it can be for their own good to realize that we can do nothing without God's grace. That being said, the pope's statement cuts both ways. It also applies to the pharisees of mercy---who replace disciple with laxity and feel-goodiness and political/ecclesiastical activism as they collectively rationalize away sin. I do wonder, though, why the Pope keeps harping the pharisee/traditionalist point, when it seems like rearranging the chairs on the titanic. Sure there are self-righteous Catholics who keep the commandments and the Church's traditions but love little, but there are far more dissident "nice" Catholic who neither keep the commandments or traditions nor practice charity in the truth. That is the real problem here imho.

    3. After reading the his comments again through this lense, if the Pope was alluding to the Kasper communion for adulterers "debate," then your blasphemy point would be right on. Sacrilegious communion is no banana peel like breaking fast. I pray God he only meant the latter.

    4. Bergoglio is not Catholic. He cannot be pope.

  2. Who knows exactly what this man was alluding to. He says things at times that not only don't line up with Catholicism, but are also illogical. You can only hold on to about 1/4 of the things he says. The rest must be thrown out the window.

  3. You are correct, it is blasphemy to ask God to do evil; it also contradicts the will of the Lord, as He expressed in the prayer He taught us: and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For that reason, the quip can also be said to be diabolic and not just blasphemous.

  4. Try hooked on phonics. You seem to not be able to read and understand and quick to spread calumny. Andrew is correct. He is praying for people who are high and mighty and self-righteous to be humbled. God does allow that. Read the saints, their lives are replete with examples. I pray that for you all the time. Your are a fundamentalist to beat all I've ever seen along with the bloggers you follow. One can feel dirty after reading you all.

    1. You seem to have a reading comprehension problem yourself. Let's analyze the phrase, "But Lord, throw a banana peel in front of them, so that they will take a good fall, and feel shame that they are sinners,.."

      As he says "Lord throw a banana peel in front of them", he asks God to deliberately introduce temptation to an individual so that "they will take a good fall", that is, sin. He's asking God to tempt someone to sin. There's a world of difference between allowing someone to sin and tempting someone to sin. The first is done out of respect for free will; the second is itself a sin. God cannot sin. To ask God to "throw a banana peel", e.g, tempt to sin, is to utter blasphemy for God never wills someone to sin. He allows it, but doesn't will it.

      If this makes you feel dirty, you are now dismissed so that you may shower.

  5. wow, throw a banana peel means to humble not fall into sin. just wow. it's a colloquialism. Is English not your first language?

    1. No, I don't know how you divine that meaning. God never wills evil - not even for a good purpose. The ends don't justify the means.

  6. Papa Alex has no idea what Catholicism is. Odds are he is guilty of pope worship. The great saints of old would have denounce Francis as a antipope months ago.

  7. Janet, your instincts, as usual are right on. What the Pope disclosed was that he curses people who say no thank you to his perversions of Church teachings while he blows kisses. When we ask for the Church that gives out Sanctifying Grace, the man utters a curse that temptation overcomes us and we be seized by the devil.

    That will fix us!

  8. Alex,

    Who is he to make judgments on the reasons people are asking him to stop encouraging adultery?

    Unless he is a sorcerer, he doesn't havethe faintest idea why Catholics have written him off as anathema.

    Who is he to judge they are high and mighty and utter a curse they fall into sin?

    Any way you slice your poor excuse for his curse, it's baloney.

    The man is a pope. A pope.

    Every time I turn around he is misleading people into their temptations.

    Now, it seems to me, the people unwilling to accept his invitation to adultery and sacreligious communion - spiritual suicide- he is "praying" the devil be victorious upon that soul.

    "Praying" those who go the extra mile not to fall into the pit, for God to place an obstacle that we will trip on.

    This man has done terrible damage to Church teaching. It has impacted people I love and care about. Robbed them of right judgment necessary for their salvation.

    It would be sinful to express how I feel about his antics, which is anything but humble. But in my worst hour, I never wished that he be overcome by evil and slip into the pit.

  9. All, I just deleted four comments owing to ad homenum attacks against the pope and other commenters. Please limit remarks to the substance of people's actions. Name-calling will cause your comment not to be published. Thank you.


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