It’s a harsh letter signed by several professed knights of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta against attempts to impose a secularising reform of the order. The letter represents the latest episode of open war waged within the Order since 2017, when its Grand Master was forced to resign by Pope Francis.
Cardinal Zen, Hong Kong’s emeritus bishop, blasts a recent speech by the Vatican’s Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin. In a personal blog post, Zen urges the truth be told about the Catholic Church in China, which concerns all Catholics around the world.
The faithful are called to give their assent and religious submission to the pronouncements of the Magisterium, but once again in Fratelli Tutti the Magisterium does not carry out its task, and almost the entire encyclical is a string of opinions and ideas that, while they may be interesting, fall in the category of opinions.
Tomorrow, in the Upper Basilica of St. Francis in Assisi, Carlo Acutis will be proclaimed blessed. Already called the patron saint of Internet, this young Milanese teenager excelled in using the new means of communication for the good of souls, for the Kingdom of God. The secret that took him right to paradise, however, was one alone, and more than ever real: exclusive love for the Eucharist, the living Heart of Jesus.
Fratelli tutti omits the primary affirmation of one true religion by bending both the Church and freedom to a temporal dimension. It ushers in the relativisation of the Christian faith and promotes the idea that the Gospel is one of the sources of inspiration for attaining universal brotherhood. Thus the Church takes its place among the architects of a world without Christ.
We’d like to compare the vision of "Fratelli tutti" with the homily delivered by St. John Paul II at the beginning of his pontificate, when he cried out “Open wide the doors to Christ”. These are two completely different visions, and Pope Francis’ encyclical marks a break in continuity with the social encyclicals prior to it. What is the simple person in the pew supposed to think and do?
Pope Francis’s new encyclical Fratelli Tutti, strikes us less for the themes it deals with, or the various reflections and suggested courses of action, and more for the perplexity it creates about the true usefulness of documents written in this way. A 200-page encyclical poses several problems of content that should be properly considered, but above all else, it raises the question of why it is necessary to publish a such a lengthy document.
The image of the Church that is emerging these past few days, after Cardinal Becciu's sacking, is anything but edifying. But more than the corruption, what is creating scandal is the inability of our pastors to judge all this in light of the faith. We don’t need popes and bishops who are good politicians and economists, we need holy pastors.
On the eve of renewing the "secret" agreement between China and the Vatican, Cardinal Joseph Zen, Bishop Emeritus of Hong Kong, spent four days in Rome in the hope of meeting Pope Francis to update him on the situation in Hong Kong and the Catholic Church in China. Zen, did not receive a response from the Holy Father. He told the Daily Compass: "I have come to warn [the pope] that the appointment of a pro-Chinese government bishop in Hong Kong would spell disaster for decades to come." Regarding the Holy See’s agreement with China he said: "The idea of striking accords with Beijing is insane. It's like trying to make a pact with the devil. There’s no grounds for dialogue whatever the argument.
Cardinal Angelo Becciu's ouster is just the latest purge of top Holy See officials during Pope Francis’s pontificate. Purges worthy of South American military juntas which evade telling the whole truth and protect those still on the winning team.
The dignity and sacredness of life always remain, even in vegetative states or with minimal conscience; assisted suicide is never permissible; no absolution to those who practise it, and those who participate or help are complicit. The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith publishes a document on the end of life which goes against the trend of the Pontifical Academy for Life. It belies false compassion and the concept of best interest. And an admonishment: the first cause of this death mentality is the lack of faith.
A fierce clash over the religious nature of the Order of Malta in the face of its secularization: less power to its religious members and more to the pro-UN faction led by Baron Boeselager. The German governing group has attempted a putsch by calling for an extraordinary Chapter, but in so doing has gone against the rules. The Holy See, which intervened in 2017 in favor of Boeselager who was hit with the condom affair, has picked up on the maneuvers of the German group and stopped them.