Saturday, 3 January 2015

What are Liberal Catholics? Why are they wrong?

Here is a bit on their history, from wiki:

The Church traces its apostolic succession to Archbishop Arnold Harris Mathew. Mathew was consecrated bishop on 28 April 1908, by Utrecht Archbishop Gerhardus Gul, assisted by the Old Catholic bishops of Deventer and Berne, in St. Gertrude's Old Catholic Cathedral, Utrecht. Only two years later, Mathew declared his autonomy from the Union of Utrecht, with which he had experienced tension from the beginning. It was only a short time later that Bishop Mathew found himself at odds with his own clergy in Great Britain and ultimately walked away to seek union with the Roman Catholic Church.

The founding Bishop of the Liberal Catholic Church was James I. Wedgwood of the Wedgwood China family, formerly a Cleric in the Church of England (Anglican). Wedgwood grew dissatisfied with the Church, and discovered the Theosophical Society, which had a stronger appeal to his sense of life and justice. When Archbishop Arnold Harris Mathew sought to ordain those clergy who were dissatisfied with the Church of England, Wedgwood was one who joined the new Old Catholic Church of England. Archbishop Mathew knew of Wedgwood's membership in the Theosophical Society, as well as that of other clergy in the Old Catholic Church of England, and originally promised that this would not be a problem, but later retracted that promise and asked all clergy to resign from the Theosophical Society. Not willing to do so, Father Wedgwood and most of the Old Catholic Church in England found themselves without a Bishop as they withdrew from Archbishop Mathew's leadership.

One of the men who Archbishop Mathew had consecrated to the Episcopate, Bishop Frederick Samuel Willoughby, offered to consecrate and elevate one of the withdrawn clergy to the Episcopate so that they would not be without a Bishop. Father Wedgwood was selected and elevated to the Episcopate on February 13, 1916. The Church was eventually reorganized and renamed The Liberal Catholic Church.

A bit further up, we get their doctrine, and I underline the direct open heresies:

The Church teaches that in the Holy Eucharist the substance of the bread and wine become linked, or polarized, on the Life of the Christ and become literal outposts of His Life and His Consciousness. And that the Holy Eucharist is designed to help those who physically take part, and to pour out a flood of spiritual power upon the surrounding world. (The Church has open communion.)

This is obviously wrong, since in the Holy Eucharist the whole substance of bread is remade into the substance of the Body of Christ (not yet physically crucified at Last Supper, risen since then) and the whole of the substance of wine is remade into the substance of the Blood of Christ. Note that since Christ is risen, where His Blessed Body is, there is also His Precious Blood, and where His Precious Blood is, there is also His Blessed Body. The two consecrations constitute a mystical separation, which is how He was mystically Crucified already at the Last Supper, though not yet physically. Had the Holy Eucharist been celebrated during the time He was in the grave, Body and Blood would have been really separate and that of the dead Christ, now they are not really separate from each other or from His Living Soul, even then they would not have been separate from His Divinity.

The Church teaches that all Christian worship is valid, of whatever kind, so long as it is earnest and true.

Also wrong, Protestants (with some High Church Anglican exceptions that have orders from Orthodox Church or possibly even that have orders from Old Catholics) do not have real bishops, therefore no real priests, and without a real priest there is no real Eucharist. They commit objectively sacrilege each time they "celebrate the Lord's Supper". Whatever their individual excuses for not knowing this may be, objectively it is sacrilege.

The Church teaches that everyone shall "one day reach His Feet, however far they stray." We teach that the "dead" pass to a life of higher service, where there is available to them the "felicity of [the] . . . Presence, evermore . . . ." What we shall experience "at His Feet" is conscious life in Christ.

This is also wrong, it denies the eternity of damnation.

Why did I come across this topic?

Well, tekton apologetics, alias James Patrick Holding, was giving a video on the 30.000 denominations.

292 of the 30.000 "denominations" were national Catholic Churches in Communion with the Vatican. Some others were independent, and independent included 495 Catholic denominations, of which some were Liberal Catholics. Obviously some others are very much not Liberal Catholics, like FSSPX whether it is counted as one or whether its German District, French District etc. count separately. Or like the FSSPX splinter groups of which clergy like Bishop Williamson and Father Abrahamowicz maintain that Bishop Fellay was a traitor because of his talks with Modernist Rome. Note some have returned the favour by calling Bishop Williamson "the pink bishop"* (once or twice he failed to detect a priest candidate who turned out to be sexually immoral, his enemies have made much of those two failures - and its their story I have heard, I have not seen his reply if any).

About half of my life I have been more or less FSSPX. And I have never ever been a Liberal Catholic.

The man I - provisionally - accept as the true Pope is also a former FSSPX believer, he was a Seminarian there and seems to have found out some bad stuff going on in the US district as per back then, he left seminary. I am talking of David Bawden who, elected in an emergency conclave, took the name Michael.

I am not quite settled as to whether he was at the end of that election in 1990 already Pope elect (he was ordained bishop much later, Gaudete 2011), or antipope while Krav (Mirko Fabris) had been really Pope since 1978. But in that case, he was not aware there was already a Pope elected by Conclave (he was aware of and rejected "Mysticalists" like Michel Colin and his successor Jean-Grégoire XVII or like Gregorio XVII of Palmar, whom I was accepting for fourteen months, while I came across Pope Michael), and if so may have become Pope in 2012 when Pope Krav ceased to be Pope, I do not know if by abdication or physical death. I have had trouble finding out details about Pope Krav, since when he was elected in 1978 Zagreb was under Communist rule and he may well have been impeded from expressing himself - unless he was himself doing the work of Communists by having "Pope Krav" as some kind of joke. I have heard one Mirko Fabris was an actor and a comedian, not sure if they are the same.

I am however settled, very firmly, that in 1986 in Assisi Wojtyla was basically stealing the show from Liberal Catholics and that therefore a canonisation of Wojtyla - known as John Paul II by those accepting he was a Pope - is invalid. However many miracles may come, these may indicate that he is not in Hell, that he can intercede from Purgatory, the two already given do not fulfill the standards required of a healing to be registered in Lourdes - one was not sudden and the other not complete. But without Apostolicity of Doctrine, he is not canonisable. And the man canonising him cannot have been Pope. And if Bergoglio - known as Pope Francis by those accepting him as Pope - was not Pope then, after his supposed election, he cannot have become Pope since, even if he had regretted the pseudo-canonisation, which obviously he has not, as far as we have been told.

It is certainly very wrong to be a Liberal Catholic. It is for mainly similar reasons very wrong to sustain Assisi Meeting of 1986. And it is wrong to call someone a Liberal Catholic or hope he may turn around and become a Liberal Catholic because he's that kind of Antiliberal Catholic who considers that Wojtyla and Bergoglio and other aspects of Vatican II are too close to Liberal Catholics.

Hans Georg Lundahl
Bibliothèque Audoux
St Genevieve of Paris, Virgin

Wiki : Liberal Catholic Church International

PS, I found through disambiguation page another article, which includes a further heresy:

The Liberal Catholic Church believes that there is a body of doctrine and mystical experience common to all the great religions of the world and which cannot be claimed as the exclusive possession of any. Moving within the orbit of Christianity and regarding itself as a distinctive Christian church it nevertheless holds that the other great religions of the world are also divinely inspired and that all proceed from a common source, though religions may stress different aspects of the various teachings and some aspects may even temporarily be ignored. These teachings, as facts in nature, rest on their own intrinsic merit. They form that true catholic faith which is catholic because it is the statement of universal principles. The LCC bases these beliefs on what St. Augustine said: "The identical thing that we now call the Christian religion existed among the ancients and has not been lacking from the beginnings of the human race until the coming of Christ in the flesh, from which moment on the true religion, which already existed, began to be called Christian." (Retract I. XIII,3).

Wiki : Liberal Catholic Church

To this I must say two things: first, that though no religion exists which is separated from all truth, whether natural knowledge like immortality of the soul or "thou shalt not kill" or supernatural knowledge like God actually caring about those who seek him, the presence of such truth in a false religion does not suffice to make it a true religion. A true religion cannot remain true while ignoring any aspect of truth accessible to man (thus the Hebraising rite among certain Africans may have been a true religion before the coming of Christ, but cannot remain so while rejecting the truth which was given through Christ and His Apostles) and cannot contain as article of faith any falsehood. For instance, if licitness of peace prayers together with people of false religions becomes a constitutive doctrine of Vatican II Sect, it will be showing more completely it is not the Catholic Church. Back when Tolkien** accepted the New Liturgy (as I also did first few years after my Catholic conversion), this was much less clear than it would be now already after pseudocanonisation of "John Paul II". The other thing is this, that by the true religion already existing before Christ, St Augustine was referring to the religion of Abel, of Noah, of Melchisedec and Abraham, of Moses and Aaron, of King David, of Daniel - i e of the physical ancestors but not spiritual predecessors of Jewry and also of the Gentiles of right faith preceding the apostasy of Gentiles into Paganism and of any of right faith preceding the division (in the days of Peleg) between Hebrew and Gentile, between Babel Builders and the true ones, the Babel-Build-refusers, i e in that generation Peleg with possibly his brother Ioctan and their heirs Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. St Augustine may have believed Ishmael and Ishmaelites remained for some time in the true religion - but not that a renovation of it would come from them, nor that the Church would need such a renovation of it./HGL

PPS - This said, it remains true, as I have said before, that all false religions contain some truth, and that therefore the Catholic Truth may be vindicated through the witness of the false religions: where they all agree with each other on a matter of principle, they also agree with Catholicism, but where they contradict Catholicism, they also contradict each other. On each point (nearly) of morality, Catholicism is either in agreement with nearly all others or on the mid point between opposed camps of the false religions. If there is one point that is excepted from this rule, it is that Catholicism is the extreme opposite of slavery - for all those that nominally condemn the instances of slavery usually so called that Catholicism did not condemn (like Robert E. Lee's slaves remaining RObert E. Lee's slaves until Robert E. Lee liberated them) on other points show a much greater favour to slavery, though under other names ("responsibility", "mental health", "education" etc)./HGL

* Every bishop and priest and deacon is twice a year dressed in pink vestments over the white alb. Advent (which is past, we are Christmas white now) and Lent (which has not yet come) have the colour purple, except for two midpoint sundays, Gaudete in Advent and Laetare Iherusalem in Lent, where purple is lightened up to pink. Time to tell a joke or drink a beer between start and end of the seasons of penance. The slur against Bishop Williamson however is not related to an appearance on these two Sundays, but to his having a rose in his episcopal coat of arms.

** It is also the 123:d birthday of John Ronald Reuel Tolkien.

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