Tuesday, August 28, 2012


                                     The Goal of Evangelization.

Just one more time, then we will make a comparative study between Pope Benedict's schema on the 'New Evangelization,' the schema in the "Lineamenta" sent by the Congregation to all the Bishops, and the "Instrumentum laboris" which is the schema of  the compilation of all the responses made by the bishops around the world in response to the 'Lineamenta.'

Again! There are two levels of knowledge in man. The first is natural knowledge: this consists of everything man can know through his natural faculties. The other is supernatural knowledge; this consists of all Divine knowledge, like Divine Revelation, the Blessed Trinity and, in short, how to go to heaven. Supernatural knowledge  is totally inaccessible to man. Man can only learn these divine knowledge through infusion by God.

Through CONVERSION man tries to rise up from the natural level to the supernatural level.   'Evangelization'  is teaching men how to undergo 'Conversion.'  Pope Benedict has been telling us to concentrate on Conversion because that is the only role man has to accomplish for the salvation of his soul.  After Conversion everything else is God's work which consists in Perfection.  The goal of Evangelization is the conversion of souls that leads to Faith. From Faith on is God's work.

Christ preached conversion: "Repent, believe." Repent is another word for conversion. And it leads to Faith which is in the supernatural level. The New Testament, the Fathers of the Church, the Doctors of the Church and the writings of the saints are all about conversion. They cannot teach more because everything after conversion is God's work.

To evangelize is to teach souls how to rise from the natural level up to the supernatural level where God, Himself, will teach the supernatural truths like Divine Revelation. Pope Benedict noticed that the error that occurred in seminaries is that professors taught the supernatural truths without teaching souls how to climb to the supernatural level. If the professor does not go to the supernatural level he will not be able to give the supernatural meanings of Divine Revelations. And if the seminarian is not taught how to rise up to the supernatural level he will not be able to understand supernatural truths even if explained by St. Thomas of Aquinas. Pope Benedict is urging today both professor and seminarian to rise up to the supernatural level ...and this is through the process of Evangelization.  It is an invitation for both to undergo 'Conversion' that leads to 'Porta Fidei.' Without 'Conversion' souls cannot have Faith, Hope and Charity. And as a consequence cannot have Eternal life.

The Apostles Evangelized by preaching 'conversion' of life. The listeners listened and obeyed the commands that led to 'conversion' or change of life.  The process by which the Apostles preached  'Conversion' of life and by which the listeners obeyed thus changing their lives is......Evangelization. What follows, namely, Faith, Hope, Charity  and  eventually Eternal Life are God's exclusive role. Note why Pope Benedict was constantly insistent on the importance of "Conversion" and encouraged us to stick to that alone.  Because  'Conversion' is the only role assigned by God to man in saving his soul.  The Holy Father enumerated 'Conversion' as the first step among the four steps needed for the salvation of our souls.  The second, third and fourth steps are God's exclusive domain.  So the Holy Father discussed 'Conversion' lengthily while hardly  discussing  the last three steps .

To show the urgency of the matter, as early as October last year , Rome issued a 'Lineamenta,' that is a draft on the "new Evangelization" that leads to "Porta Fidei" for the Bishop's Synod this October and sent it to all bishops around the world for their reaction. Their reactions had been received and collated in a document called "Instrumentum Laboris." 

Of course, we all expected the 'Lineamenta' and 'Instrumentum Laboris' would be working  on the ideas of the Holy Father on the 'New Evangelization" that will lead Catholic souls to the 'Door of Faith' and eventually Eternal Life. Those documents should be explaining how the lost of Faith that is prevalent in the Catholic Church has been caused by the inability of souls to mature in their conversion of life due to very poor Evangelization.  So the documents should  'evangelize' by teaching souls how to undergo 'Conversion' so that they may again  have or regain the theological virtue of Faith that God gives only to those who have undergone full  conversion 'ad Deum', as St. Augustine would say.

However the Lineamenta comes out stating;  that because the 'New Evangelization  "is directed  at people who are already baptized the question of  'Conversion' doesn't really arise  - in theory they are already in the Church." If Evangelization is directed to the conversion of souls, and there is not need for conversion, therefore, there is no need for Evangelization.

And this is the common belief. Because they are baptized, because they are priest and nuns, because they are bishops, because they belong to ecclesial community, because they have bishop friends, because...because...they are already inside the Catholic Church and does not need 'Conversion.'

Wait a minute! The Holy Father stated that what we have is a 'Crisis of Faith.' That means people have no Faith, they are outside the Catholic Church, they have no grace, they have no virtue whatsoever, they know nothing about the teachings of the Catholic Church, their minds are filled with heresies,  their hearts and minds are in love with the world and with themselves, they are 'adversus' a Deo.  And the Lineamenta states that they are already inside the Church. Where are the Catholic  Signs of One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic. Where are the more than 30 signs enumerated during the more than 30 Sundays in Ordinary time. Or at least where are the five general signs given by St. Thomas of Aquinas. "The question of 'Conversion' doesn't really arise." ......when the Pope had been repeating the great need for 'Conversion.'

And the Bishops all around the world responded to that Lineamenta accepting fully that great presumption that we are already Catholics and do not need conversion. If Bishop's and priest use the "Instrumentum Laboris" based on the Lineamenta with the erroneous presumption that there is no need for 'Conversion' this coming "Year of Faith" will be a total disaster. Why?  Because Faith will only be given to us by God  after a total life of 'Conversion.' And the "Year of Faith" was meant by the Holy Father for all Catholics to check if they have the right theological virtue of Faith that comes only after conversion. To tell the Catholic World that there is no need for conversion because they are all already converted for whatever reason is to prevent all souls from having Faith. He who does not believe is already condemned. 

Thursday, August 16, 2012


                                        HOW COME FAITH WAS NEVER ATTAINED.

Before he became Pope, the holy father wrote the 'Ratzinger Report' where he outlined the 'Crisis in the Church'   and described it as a crisis of Faith.'  This was not due to lost of Faith but due to the inability of souls to make an act of Faith. The solution is not renewal because there is nothing to renew. It must be evangelization because it is teaching everything from the beginning.
Fr. Servais Pinckners, a Moral Theologian tried to pin point what might have happened; how come very, very few were making the act of Faith.

 Before the Council of Trent the Catholic Church was beginning to have serious problems. For one thing it was noticeable that after each Ecumenical Council there were always problems, even after the Council of Trent just as we have now. But before Trent, the heresy of Nominalism popularized by William was besieging the Church. This heresy was metamorphosing first, into Luther's Protestantism and forking out into communism on one side and into democracy on the other. Both political philosophies have their origin from the heresy of Nominalism.  Europe, specially France, was the experimental ground for these deviant philosophies. It tore Europe into fragments and was transplanted to the U.S. in its worst form. The Catholic Church was disintegrating in Europe. So the Council of Trent was summoned and basing her documents on the Fathers and Doctors of the Church plus her Tradition and Liturgy the Council made very good documents. But as we mentioned in the previous post, after the Council, the Dicasteries were in a hurry to implement the documents specially in Moral Theology. In rushing to train the priest with the new documents, specially the Diocesan priests in the seminaries, they did not follow the proper method of instruction.

The right procedure is this: theology professors must be contemplatives (i.e. they must be spiritually in the supernatural level having receive grace together with the three theological virtues of Faith, Hope and Charity and as a consequence their knowledge of Divine Revelation is infused or taught to them by God, Himself. And the seminary students must be taught, not the truths of Divine Revelation, but how to rise up to the supernatural level spiritually where it is God who would teach them.  In the rush the theology instructor who were merely in the natural level (bogged down in the spirituality of the Old Testament) were attempting to teach seminarians who were likewise in the natural level.  Strictly speaking both were not in the level of grace and devoid of supernatural Faith. The blind leading the blind.

As a consequence theology professors who were spiritually in the natural level were attempting to teach supernatural truths that they could not explain to students who were in the natural level who could not understand supernatural truths. The fault of theological professors was that in not being contemplatives thus not having the infused knowledge of Divine Revelation, they were explaining supernatural truths using words of Scriptures but explained by giving merely its natural dictionary meaning and not its deep, penetrating meaning as meant by God. It is exactly how the Protestants do it. They explain the words of God without giving what God really meant but by giving only the natural dictionary meaning. This is giving the seminarians a natural understanding of Divine Revelation and this is not Faith because this is not evangelization. Yet the theology professor and the seminarian after the lecture have the deceitful feeling that they had lectured and listened to a supernatural truth of the Catholic Church....thus the feeling that they had faith, that they are inside the Catholic Church and will attain eternal life. Poor souls. And this wrong method is carried on continuously up to the very present hour.

This first defect mentioned by Pope Benedict in his 'new evangelization'  is still in the 'Instrumentum Laboris' for the bishop's synod this October. If it is not corrected very few will ever reach Faith in this scheduled 'Year of Faith.' What a waste.Why don' we just all follow Pope Benedict's schema that he had already presented? The Bishop's schema is full of beautiful words describing natural  realities. If given to the people we will all feel as if we have been fed with supernatural truths when actually we were only fed with natural food. The Bread of life was nowhere except in words describing a mere bread.

Christ is the Bread of Life. The manna that fed the body was just a type. The Bread of Life are the sound teachings of Divine Revelation the fruit of which is an innocent mind. Who is Christ?  The Bread of Life that will give us Eternal life if we eat the Bread of Life. And the eating of the Bread of life is FAITH, the reason Pope Benedict is so insistent.

Friday, August 10, 2012


This topic on Faith is important for Pope Benedict and for us. For the Pope, this is his most important job, to lead us to the door of Faith. For us we must enter the door of Faith otherwise we are damned. For the rest of the world it is either salvation or damnation. Logically, there is nothing more important for any of us. But this is not the case for most people. Not even for priests and nuns. Yet the Pope's plan to come out later with a letter on Faith shows the urgency of this call. It even sounds like a last call.

In the last post we saw the obvious difference between  Pope Benedict's schema on the "New Evangelization" that leads to "Porta Fidei" the door of Faith.... and the schema or 'Instrumentum laboris" of the Preparatory Commission for the Bishop's Synod on the same topic scheduled for this October. Pope Benedict's schema is in accordance with the Liturgy, Scriptures, the Fathers of the Church and the Magisterium from the earliest time up to the Council of Trent, at least.  The Instrumentum Laboris is not, confirming further the lost of Faith and the need to review the Catholic Church's evangelization efforts which the Holy Father had been harping at. 

The Holy Father is trying to pin point a problem for which his'new evangelization' towards the door of Faith is the solution. The problem is based on his analysis of the Gospel on the feast of St. Peter and Paul when he first announced the need for this program  to tackle the problem of the near complete lost of Faith.

The Gospel speaks about two levels of understanding. The first level is the natural level in which everything can be understood by the natural mind. The Old Testament falls under this level. Everything in the Old Testament, like the 10 Commandments can be understood by the natural mind.  The prophecies about the coming Messiah, the moral virtue and all of natural theology can be understood by the natural mind because they all fall in the natural level. So when Christ asked the disciples who the crowd think He is  the crowd gave answers that are naturally known, like He is a prophet. And Christ described their answer as a knowledge that can be taught by flesh and blood, i.e. by human teachers. Human teachers are teachers who teach Algebra, Physics, Philosophy and Natural theology and other natural sciences.

The second level is the supernatural level. The knowledge in this level cannot be taught or learned by flesh and blood. Only God can teach this to souls. Divine Revelation and/or the teachings of the Catholic Church would fall under this category. Natural man can read and know the words of these truths  but not the deep meaning of the Word of God which contains supernatural mysteries, precepts and counsels.  The deep breath of divine truths which comes from God can be taught by God alone. Though the New Testament teachings is a written law that can be learned by the mind, its  divine meaning can only be infused in the soul by God. And this is how St. Peter answered Christ's question. Christ said: flesh and blood had not taught you this but My Father in heaven.

In short, the Old Testament and all man- made scientific knowledge  fall under the natural level that can be taught by men.  The New Testament and all knowledge after Pentecost fall under the supernatural level that is taught by God alone.  To know supernatural knowledge like the teachings of the Catholic Church a soul must be raised up to the supernatural level and in that level God takes over and teaches him. We do not teach souls the Catholic Truths. We teach them how to rise to the supernatural level where God, Himself teaches the soul. The process of teaching the soul how to rise up to the supernatural level is called Evangelization. An Evangelizer does not teach Catholic Truths. He teaches souls how to rise to the supernatural level where God teaches the soul. We cannot over emphasize this because there lies the problem of Evangelization....we are teaching souls Catholic Truths instead of teaching them how to rise up to the supernatural level and become co-natural with Divinity. Pope Benedict noted this defect and described it as 'wrong method' of Evangelization.' The inability of Evangelizer to rise up to the supernatural level (the contemplative life) and as a consequence not to be able to raise their listeners to the supernatural level resulted in the second defect mentioned by the Pope as 'wrong contents' in Evangelization. Those are the two general defects mentioned by Pope Benedict in his 'New Evangelization.

It is impossible to teach Catholic Truths without teaching souls how to rise to the supernatural level because supernatural truths are taught in that level.  If we go the Christ's 'Apostolic Commission' to the Apostles at the end of Matthew's Gospel, His instruction is to 'teach all nations' how to rise to the supernatural level and not the teaching of Catholic truths.

To teach listeners to rise up to the supernatural level so God can teach them Divine Revelation  is to teach them to become contemplatives. The Evangelizer has to be a contemplative himself. This is an important element of the "New Evangelization" that the Pope had been repeating but which is lacking in the schema for the Bishop's Synod this October.

The error that Pope Benedict is correcting is this: preachers who are merely in the natural level and, therefore do not understand the deeper meaning of the teachings of Christ are teaching souls doctrines with words in the natural level which the hearers cannot understand the deeper meaning because they are not in the supernatural level. Neither the Evangelizer nor the hearer are learning about Faith. The Holy Father suspects that this was the cause of the nearly total lost of Faith today.

The Documents of the Council of Trent were superb morally and dogmatically because they were documents based of the Holy Tradition of the Catholic Church. But they were living on bad days.  The Protestant reformation was at full swing. The Council was pressured to rush the training of priests in the seminary for the Evangelization of the Church that was being swept by Protestantism. In the rush, they employed priests in the natural level trying to teach supernatural truths which they did not understand to seminarians who could not understand supernatural truths because they were not taught how to rise to the supernatural level. Since Faith is in the supernatural level we have a scenario where both the teachers and seminarians in the seminary had no Faith. If there were  few contemplatives who could have done a good job of teaching seminarians how to rise to the supernatural level, they would all be gone after two generations. That was the root of today's problem of a near total absence of Faith or the 'Crisis of Faith' the former Cardinal Ratzinger described as the state of the Church in his 'Ratzinger Report." There ought to be a few contemplatives in the Church otherwise Satan would have triumphed over the Church which cannot happen.

The schema prepared for the Bishop's Synod this October lacks the first two steps in the Holy Father's schema. These are the elements that teaches souls how to rise to the supernatural level. The topics for the bishop's synod were mostly natural, human topics.

The Holy Father's schema has the first two steps which are the provision in raising souls to the supernatural level so God can teach them Divine Revelations. The Bishop's schema does not contain these two provisions. Unless their schema is improved souls will not attain the supernatural virtue of Faith and eternal Life. Bishop Fisichella, head of the Congregation for the New Evangelization probably pin pointed the crux of the problem when he said: what we need is not new ways of evangelization but new Evangelizers. Preachers who are not bogged down in the spirituality of the Old Testament, the level of the natural. But souls who have risen up to the supernatural level into the spirituality of the New Testament and thus truly have Faith. Putting it the Holy Father's words: only contemplatives can teach other souls to become contemplative where God alone can teach them the truths of the Catholic Church. That is the 'New Evangelization'.