Is Pope Francis Promoting a A New Kind of Cross?

Is Pope Francis looking to promote a “new kind” of Cross – one that does NOT include Jesus Christ?  On numerous occasions, the Pope has used, received as a gift, and even kissed crosses whose design does not include Jesus, and which bear startling resemblance to occult symbolism. In this article, we review three of these important instances where the Pope was publicly seen with the “new” crosses.

A “Snake” Cross in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

BRAZIL-POPE-WYD-CARDINALS-BISHOPSDuring his visit to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil for World Youth Day on July 27, 2013, Pope Francis was seen holding a most unusual cross during a meeting with cardinals and bishops.

The Pope was likewise seen kissing the unusual cross (with what seems like a serpent’s head) during the same meeting. The original photo can still be found in Getty Images.

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A Communist Cross in Bolivia

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On July 8, 2015, Pope Francis received – and subsequently kept – a “Communist crucifix” as a gift from Bolivian President Evo Morales (left).  The cross was presented by President Morales to Pope Francis upon his arrival in Bolivia during his South American tour.

According to reports, Morales told Francis that the “Communist crucifix” was modeled on a design created by the Rev. Luis Espinal, a politically active priest killed in Bolivia in 1980. The Pope stopped and prayed at the site of the shooting of Rev. Espinal.

One of Espinal’s friends and fellow Jesuits, the Rev. Xavier Albo, said Espinal’s intent was for the church to be in dialogue with Marxism, and said Espinal had altered his crucifix to incorporate the Communists’ most potent symbol: the hammer and sickle. Espinal was one of the foremost proponents of Liberation Theology – a Marxist-leaning theology movement born in South America that was condemned by both Pope Benedict XVI and Pope John Paul II.

In an interview with the press on his way back to Rome after the trip, the Pope defended the “Communist cross” and praised Espinal:

Espinal was an enthusiast of this Marxist analysis of the reality, but also of theology using Marxism. From this, he came up with this work. Also the poetry of Espinal was of this kind of protest. But, it was his life, it was his thought. He was a special man, with so much human geniality, who fought in good faith, no? Making a hermeneutic like this, I understand this work. For me it wasn’t an offense, but I had to do this hermeneutic, and I say it to you so that there aren’t any wrong opinions.

Feast of Corpus Christi

IMG_0927.jpgOn June 18, 2017, during the Feast of Corpus Christi, Pope Francis held another different version of the Cross without the image of Jesus Christ.  Photo above shows the Pope holding the unusual Cross.

Many Catholic commentators, including priests such as Fr. Kevin Cusick, expressed serious concerns about the “new cross” that the Pope publicly carried. See below the Twitter reaction of Fr. Cusick.

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“A New Form of the Cross Will be Introduced”

Both Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI had never deviated from the traditional design of the Cross, which has as its center the person of Jesus Christ.  This historically unique situation – of a living Pope seemingly introducing unusual, different interpretations of the Cross – reminds us of a prophecy given to Maria Divine Mercy, an Irish seer who has received numerous messages and prophecies from the Holy Trinity since 2010.  Click on this article for a more comprehensive and critical analysis of Maria Divine Mercy –  The Book of Truth: A Critical Review.

One of those prophecies included a prediction that “a new form of the cross will be introduced”.

In a message given on April 30, 2013 to Maria Divine Mercy, Jesus warned about the upcoming “new form of the cross” that was to be introduced by the False Prophet:

The letter is being written now to beckon all those in the service of the Catholic Church. Soon, all of My sacred servants will be informed of the changes, which they will be told are for the good of the Church.

The new rules, which will see amendments made to prayers during the Holy Mass, will seem innocent. To many, they won’t notice the significance, but it will relate to the Holy Eucharist and My Presence within It. The word ‘commemorate’ will be used and all churches will soon be stripped bare of their treasures. The taking of treasures, including gold Tabernacles – which will be replaced by those made of wood and stone – will be one of the signs that they are being gathered for the New World Religion.

Churches will be changed within their walls and this will involve the desecration of altars. The Monstrance,  holding the Holy Eucharist, will begin to disappear and the days when My Holy Host is exposed will come to an end.

Cast scorn upon My Word now, and you will weep tears when these acts are brought before you. Soon, not long afterwards, the garments worn by My sacred servants, will be altered and a new form of the Cross will be introduced. The new atrocity will not be based on the simple cross. Instead it will feature, discreetly, the head of the beast.

I ask you to gather My holy Crosses now and keep them in your homes, along with Holy Water. I urge all of you to hold onto the Truth of what I have told you. Then I want you to trust in Me completely. Never believe that I Am leaving you at the mercy of the evil one. I will remain close to you at all times. I will pour special blessings on the heads of My beloved, loyal sacred servants to keep them entwined with My Sacred Heart.

Cardinal Muller: first time in history that we have two legitimate Popes

In an explosive interview with the German version of Vatican Radio last October 26, 2016, Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Müller, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, said that “for the first time in the history of the Church we have the case of two legitimate living popes.”

This is the first time that a high-ranking Vatican official has publicly acknowledged the highly-unusual situation of the coexistence of two popes.   Muller continued:

Certainly only Pope Francis is THE Pope, but Benedict is the emeritus, so somehow he is still tied to the papacy. This unprecedented situation needs to be addressed theologically and spiritually. On how to do it, there are different opinions. I have shown that even with all the diversity that relate to the person and the character – which are given by nature – that the internal link must also be made visible. “

When the journalist asked what this   “internal link” or inner connection consists of, Muller said:  “This is to profess [to proclaim the faith in] Jesus Christ, Who is the ‘ratio essendi’, the true foundation of the papacy, Who holds the Church together in the unity in Christ.…”

The journalist further asked: “What do two popes together offer the Church?”  Müller responded:

 Both exercise an office that they didn’t give to themselves, nor are they able to define: an office that is already ‘defined’ by Christ Himself, as it has been understood by the believing conscience of the Church. And each man experiences within the papal office – as in every other ecclesial office – a weight that one can only bear with the help of grace.

Muller essentially says that Pope Francis and Pope Benedict XVI, “both exercise an office” that is the “Papal office”. And he says that this unprecedented situation, of “two legitimate living popes”, “needs to be addressed theologically and spiritually.”

Papal Secretary: An Expanded Papal Ministry

Müller seems to be going in the same direction as Monsignor Georg Gänswein, secretary of Pope Benedict XVI and Prefect of the Pontifical Household of Pope Francis.

On May 21, 2016, Monsignor Ganswein caused quite a stir when in a conference in Rome, he said that with Pope Benedict XVI’s resignation, “there is an expanded {papal} ministry, with an active member and a contemplative member.”

In that talk, Gänswein said among other things:

Before and after his resignation, Benedict has understood and understands his task as a participation in the ‘Petrine’ Ministry. He left the Papal Throne and yet, with the step [he took] on 11 February 2013, did not abandon this Ministry at all. Instead, he integrated the personal office with a collegial and synodal dimension, almost a ministry in common.

Ganswein likewise said:

There are not, then, two popes, but ‘de facto’ there is an expanded ministry, with an active member and a contemplative member. This is why Benedict XVI has not given up his name, nor the white cassock. For this the proper form with which to address him is still ‘Holiness’; and for this, also, he did not retire to a monastery in isolation, but he is within the Vatican, as if he had only made a step to the side to make room for his successor and for a new stage in the history of the papacy.

Pope Benedict XVI: Petrine Ministry is “Forever”

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI himself seemed to indicate as much that he did not intend to revoke his exercise of the Petrine ministry,  not only with choice of an emeritus papacy, but also with the words of his last speech, where he explained that the Petrine ministry was “forever” in his life and added: “My decision to give up the active exercise of the ministry, does not revoke this fact.”

Likewise, in his recent best-selling book, “Last Conversations”, Pope Benedict dedicated a page to explain his current situation, in perfect congruity with the intervention of his secretary in May and with that of Müller. He says that his was not “an escape, but another way to remain true to my ministry.” And he adds that he continues to be pope “in a deeper, more intimate, sense”.

Today Müller says that “the internal link” that ties the two popes together and binds them to guard the deposit of the Faith “must be made visible.”

Was Benedict XVI Forced to Resign?

Not a few commentators and writers have put forward the position that given the strange and sudden circumstances around his sudden resignation, it may be a possibility that Benedict XVI was actually forced to resign by hidden forces within the Vatican plotting his demise. And while many dismiss this talk outright as outlandish “conspiracy theories”, the fact is that some high-ranking, progressive Cardinals have actually publicly acknowledged the existence of such a secret group within the Vatican that plotted the ouster of Benedict XVI.

In his biography, Cardinal Daneels, a high-ranking adviser of Pope Francis, claimed that a secret group of cardinals called the “St. Gallen group” plotted for years to bring down Benedict XVI. He likewise said that the same group was behind the election to the papacy of Pope Francis. ∎

By Peter Boardside, Veritas

Pope Francis Dismisses Entire Membership of Pontifical Academy for Life

A shocking new piece of information comes to us from Germany, from the website Katholisches.info, which is principally run by the well-informed Vatican expert and loyal Catholic layman, Giuseppe Nardi. He reported on 18 November that Pope Francis has decided to re-write the statutes of the Pontifical Academy for Life in a way which essentially re-makes this organization.

Relying on a 5 November 2016 report published by the German branch of Vatican Radio, called Radio Vatikan, Nardi has published the new statutes of the Academy. Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia was appointed as the new head of this Dicastery in August of 2016, which in itself signaled a change of direction for the Academy. Now, as Nardi reports, with these new statutes, all current members will be removed and a new set of up to seventy members will be installed.

As the new statutes say, these new members will be appointed independently of religious orientation. From the revised statutes (from the section “Directions and Norms for Members”):

Academicians are selected, without any religious discrimination, from among well-known ecclesiastical, religious and lay persons of various nationalities, who are expert in the disciplines pertaining to human life… [my emphasis]

The new rules set forth that the members will be re-affirmed every five years which means that the life-long members of the Academy will need to be re-affirmed. The new rules will go into effect on 1 January 2017. As Nardi puts it: the new rules mean three things: “the purge of all members of the Academy, the elimination of the [Jerome] Lejeune Oath [similar to the Hippocratic Oath], and the exclusion of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.” An oath to defend the dignity of a person “from conception until (natural) death” is, according to Nardi, no longer to be required of members.

Nardi explains further that with the end of the year 2016, all members of the Academy will lose their office, even if they had been originally called to office for a lifetime. On 1 January, 2017, Pope Francis is fully free to name a complete new set of names for the Academy. With it, there will be a breach of the continuity which was essential for the Academy since its foundation.

Important in this context is that several members of the Pontifical Academy for Life have been strong defenders of Catholic Doctrine in the face of the liberal revolution sweeping the Church. No less prominent a Catholic figure than Professor Josef Seifert — who has written one of the most compelling rebukes of the post-synodal exhortation Amoris Laetita — has himself been a member of this papal institution, and will now most probably be replaced by more liberal leaning members.

Cardinal Burke: we will make ‘formal act of correction’ if Pope doesn’t issue Amoris clarification

by  Dan Michaels

Cardinal Raymond Burke has said it may be necessary to make a “formal act of correction” if Pope Francis doesn’t answer a letter from four cardinals asking him to clarify aspects of Amoris Laetitia.

He is one of four cardinals who have written to the Pope asking for a clarification of Amoris Laetitia. They say that the document could be read as contradicting Church teaching on the moral law and on the question of Communion for the remarried. The Pope has declined to reply to the letter.

The September 19 letter, signed by Cardinals Walter Brandmüller, Raymond Burke, Carlo Caffarra, and Joachim Meisner, asked the pope 5 short questions which call for ‘yes or no’ answers that would immediately clarify the meaning of the confusion-plagued document on precisely those points where theologians, priests and even bishops have offered contradicting interpretations.

In an interview with Edward Pentin of National Catholic Register published last November 14, Cardinal Burke said that if the Pope were to teach error or heresy, “It is the duty in such cases, and historically it has happened, of cardinals and bishops to make clear that the Pope is teaching error and to ask him to correct it.”

In the interview, Burke emphasizes that the cardinals have sought to act for “the good of the Church,” which, he says, “is suffering from a tremendous confusion” on the points they have raised especially. He notes, for example, that priests in different dioceses are being given contradictory directions on how to handle the question of access to Communion for those in adulterous unions.

“We, as cardinals, judged it our responsibility to request a clarification with regard to these questions, in order to put an end to this spread of confusion that is actually leading people into error,” he says.

Asked what would happen if the Pope remained silent, Cardinal Burke replied: “Then we would have to address that situation. There is, in the tradition of the Church, the practice of correction of the Roman Pontiff. It is something that is clearly quite rare. But if there is no response to these questions, then I would say that it would be a question of taking a formal act of correction of a serious error.”

Burke goes on to insist that in a case of conflict between the pope and Church Tradition, the Tradition is binding. “Ecclesial authority exists only in service of the Tradition,” Burke explains. “I think of that passage of St. Paul in the [Letter to the] Galatians (1:8), that if ‘even an angel should preach unto you any Gospel other than that which we preached unto you, let him be anathema.’”

Historically, in the rare cases where popes have taught heresy, Burke explains, “It is the duty…, and historically it has happened, of cardinals and bishops to make clear that the Pope is teaching error and to ask him to correct it.”

Such an act of formal correction would be extremely unusual. One example is the challenge to Pope John XXII in the 1330s. He had publicly taught – though only as his personal opinion – that souls in heaven would not actually see God until the Final Judgment, a teaching contrary to Church doctrine.

In response, several theologians challenged Pope John. A few were punished, but the Pope backed down after a joint letter by theologians from the University of Paris, under the leadership of Paludanus, the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem. The letter professed total obedience to John, but affirmed that the teachings being attributed to him were contrary to the Catholic faith. Before his death John withdrew his heretical opinion.

Cardinal Burke’s suggestion of a “formal correction” comes after a debate over whether the remarried can receive Communion while in a sexually active relationship outside marriage. The Church has taught that this is contrary to the dogma of the indissolubility of marriage.

In his apostolic exhortation Amoris Laetitia, the Pope made no direct reference to the question, but some bishops have interpreted his words as meaning that some remarried people can receive Communion, even if they are still in a sexual relationship. This is the interpretation of the Buenos Aires bishops, which the Pope has appeared to privately favour.

In a probable allusion to the Buenos Aires bishops, Cardinal Burke said: “Even diocesan directives are confused and in error.” He added that there was ”tremendous division” in the Church over Communion and other related points, concerning the moral law and marriage.

He said the four cardinals had intervened “because so many people are saying: ‘We’re confused, and we don’t understand why the cardinals or someone in authority doesn’t speak up and help us.’”

Cardinal Caffarra: If even a cardinal tells you something not in line with the Catechism, don’t listen

Cardinal Carlo Caffarra, archbishop emeritus of Bologna and a former member of the Pontifical Council for the Family, said in an interview that Amoris Laetitia must be read in light of Church doctrine.

“To Catholic faithful who are confused about the Doctrine of the Faith concerning marriage, I simply say: ‘Read and meditate upon the Catechism of Catholic Church nn.1601-1666,’” Caffarra said. “And when you hear some talk about marriage — even if done by priests, bishops, cardinals — and you then verify that it is not in conformity with the Catechism, do not listen to them. They are the blind leading the blind.”

The portion of the Catechism he referenced teaches that marriage is a lifelong covenant of man and a woman that “is by its nature ordered toward the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of offspring,” and is a Sacrament when it occurs between baptized people.

Caffarra also addressed the ambiguities in Amoris Laetitia, for which he said it seems Pope Francis by his own admission realized the potential. He told Dr. Maike Hickson at OnePeterFive that if he had the opportunity to speak with Pope Francis about the ambiguity of Amoris Laetitia, particularly its controversial chapter 8, Caffarra would ask for clarification on whether the Church’s traditional teaching that certain actions are always gravely sinful is “still believed to be true.”

Caffarra said:

The constant teaching of the Church — as it has also been recently reiterated in Veritatis splendor, No. 79 — is that there are negative moral norms which allow of no exceptions, because they prohibit acts which are intrinsically dishonorable and dishonest — such as, for example, adultery. Is this traditional teaching still believed to be true, even after Amoris Laetitia?” This is what I would say to the Holy Father.

Chapter 8 — and specifically footnote 351 — of Amoris Laetitia seems to contradict the Church’s longstanding teaching that those committing objectively sinful acts, such as marital intimacy in an illegitimate second “marriage,” may not receive Holy Communion.

Responding to Cardinal Christoph Schönborn’s recent assertion that all prior Church teaching on family must be read through Amoris Laetitia, Caffarra said, “one should not only read the previous Magisterium on marriage in the light of Amoris Laetitia (AL), but one should also read Amoris Laetitia in the light of the previous Magisterium. The logic of the Living Tradition of the Church is bipolar: it has two directions, not one.”

Caffarra continued:

Bishops and many theologians faithful to the Church and to the Magisterium argue that, especially on one specific — but very important — point, there is not a continuity, but, rather, an opposition between Amoris Laetitia and the previous Magisterium… Amoris Laetitia says that, under some circumstances, sexual intercourse between the divorced and civilly remarried is morally legitimate. Even more so, it says that, what the Second Vatican Council has said about spouses — with regard to sexual intimacy — also applies to them (see footnote 329). Therefore: when one says that a sexual relationship outside of marriage is legitimate, it is therefore a claim contrary to the Church’s doctrine on sexuality; and when one says that adultery is not an intrinsically dishonest act — and that therefore there might be circumstances which render it not to be dishonest — that, too, is a claim contrary to the Tradition and Doctrine of the Church. In such a situation like this, the Holy Father thus has to clarify the matter…When someone says: the doctrine remains, but it is only about taking care of some few cases, I answer: the moral norm “Do not commit adultery” is an ABSOLUTELY NEGATIVE norm which does not allow of any exceptions. There are many ways to do good, but there is only one way not to do evil: not to do evil.

by  Claire Chretien, Lifesite News

 

 

Pope Francis: The Son of Man was “Like a Serpent”, “Became Sin”, was “Stained by Sin”

francis-devil-cross-largeIn a homily delivered on Tuesday of the fifth week of Lent, in Casa Santa Marta, Pope Francis put a new spin on the episode of the bronze serpent in the desert mentioned in the Book of Numbers (21: 4–9).  He said that Jesus was dirtied by sin, and implied that the serpent symbolizes our faults.  Below is the exact text of the homily of the Pope in this regard:

The serpent is a symbol of sin. The serpent that kills but also a serpent that saves. And this is the Mystery of Christ. Paul, when speaking about this mystery, said that Jesus emptied himself, humiliated himself and destroyed himself in order to save us. And (what’s) even stronger, ‘he became sin’. Using this symbol, he became a serpent. This is the prophetic message of today’s reading. The Son of Man, who like a serpent, ‘became sin,’ is raised up to save us. […] the story of our redemption, this is the story of God’s love. If we want to know God’s love, let us look at the Cross, a man tortured, a God, emptied of his divinity, dirtied [stained] by sin…Sin is the work of Satan and Jesus defeats Satan by ‘becoming sin’ and from there he lifts up all of us.

Did Christ become stained in assuming our nature? 

The Pope’s homily begs an important clarification, lest it be misunderstood: did become “dirtied by sin” when He assumed our nature?

The answer, according to Church teaching, is that He emptied himself and humbled himself, but was not stained: on the contrary, being innocent, He suffered for the sins of the human race to save it. Below are some quotes from various popes, saints and Sacred Scripture that unequivocally say that Christ was not stained by sin in any way:

  • Saint Augustine of Hippo: “Christ loved us so much that, sinless himself, he suffered for us sinners the punishment we deserved for our sins.”
  • Saint Maximus the Confessor: “God became perfect man, taking on everything that belongs to human nature except sin, and indeed sin is not part of human nature created by God.”
  • St. John Paul II: “Taking the form of a slave, Christ made himself similar to men in everything but not sin.”
  • Benedict XVI: “God himself wished to share in our human condition, but not in the corruption of sin.”
  • Sacred Scripture:Tested in every way, yet without sin”; “For our sake he made him to be sin who did not know sin”; “Jesus committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth.”

The Church’s teaching is clear: Sin is incompatible with the human and divine natures of Jesus Christ.