Strange Dog-fight with Vatican curia on Pristhood!

Irish priest spurns Vatican plan that would have allowed return inito minstry Michael Kelly, CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE, Sep 18, 2020.

Redemptorist Father Tony Flannery is pictured in an undated photo. The well-known Irish priest who has been in a dispute with the Vatican for several years over his controversial views has rejected a plan from the Congregation to the Doctrine of the Faith that would have restored him to public ministry. (Credit: CNS photo/Irish Catholic.) of the tectonic – radical – changes, Vatican ii brought about in the church is that it should change constantly (semper reformanda!). It is totally the opposite of its traditional teaching of Pius xii and Ottoviani, his Doctrinal congregation head who taught church never changes with his motto: Ecclesia semper idem (never changes!)  

Cardinal Newman also taught that church and all of us must change constantly, we quoted it many times:” It may be different in a higher world, not here bellow… to be perfect is to have changed constantly!”

 Francis doing it!

It is only now over 50 years after the Counsel, so a determined effort is made by Pope Francis against an onslaught of attacks on him, by the conservative Vatican Curia which can never be changed on its views on “homosexuals, same-sex marriage, co-habitation, sex enjoyment equal to food enjoyment, jesus never ordained priests etc….” 

Even this writer,  considered a liberal thinker, could not – in fact still struggling –  agree with many of them, but coming round to agree with the views of Francis, forced by strict reason, not blind faith! Read a quote: “We should not forget to mention that Jesus never ordained anyone and he never said much about sex, certainly not about homosexuality. At least that's what is recorded in the Gospel accounts.”

Jesus High priest, King?

This is not to say that you should agree either with me or Father Tony Flannery, whose vews are discussed below. Just think of the absurdity of a JESUS becoming the HIGH PRIEST? It was “Saul of Tarsus” persecutor turned preacher, who created Christ the KING! 

It’s need was felt even during the time of Jesus! Otherwise how could James and John approach Jesus through their mother, to make them sit on his right and left, as Prime Ministers in his Kingdom? 

Synodality & Democracy

Francis still fights forward to promote ‘Synodality and democracy’ in the Churh while the CURIA opposes tooth-and-nail! Personally, I can bat only for Redemptorist  Fr. Flannery sticking to his guns for women priesthood, gender equality in a totally male dominated church while Jesus was totally women friendly kissing mary on the lipes as reported in Gospel of Philip & elsewhere. 

Especially the German Church and many in the Amazone synod are also for Synodality with Francis! He tries to balance both, to go slowly (festina lente; hurry up slowly)to forestall a possible Schism! 

Of course none of you have to believe my reporting! But websites are full of articles on these topics. Only I am not able to reproduce them all here, as my object is not winning an argument for any faction, while a criminal man-made Hierarchy is defending themselves with their criminal silence and coverup!  

Trifles Make Perfection!

Vatican  Curia is always strong with the weak and weak with the strong. Irish Fr. Flannery 73, could not be cowed down by threats. So like a defeated dog, the Curia stopped with its barks, and turned back with its tail tucked between legs, not daring to bite! 

No harm in thinking over these sweet or bitter news items that provoke thinking to come to a balanced conclusion for each one. “Triffles make perfection, but perfection is no triffle”, Michael Angelow. james kottoor, editor ccv.  

Read below Fr. Flannery, Jesus didn’t start Priesthood!

DUBLIN — A well-known Irish priest who has been in a dispute with the Vatican for several years over his controversial views has rejected a plan from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith that would have restored him to public ministry. 

Redemptorist Father Tony Flannery has been forbidden to exercise public ministry since 2012 after he was censured for saying that he no longer believed that “the priesthood as we currently have it in the Church originated with Jesus” or that he designated “a special group of his followers as priests.” 

Flannery said he believes his priestly ministry has ended.The priest revealed on his website Sept. 16 that he had been asked by the Vatican in July to affirm church teaching on a number of areas, including the inadmissibility of women for ordination, homosexuality, same-sex relationships and gender theory. He said he refused. 

Flannery’s announcement came after an intervention by Redemptorist Superior General Father Michael Brehl, who wrote to the doctrinal congregation in February asking if he could permit Flannery, 73, to return to public ministry. 

According to documents published on Flannery’s website, the Vatican congregation responded that he “should not return to public ministry prior to submitting a signed statement regarding his positions on homosexuality, civil unions between persons of the same sex, and the admission of women to the priesthood.” 

The letter from the Vatican said that “the Irish Provincial should ask Father Flannery to give his assent to the statement by providing his signature in each of the places indicated (enclosure).” The letter referred to separate statements asserting church teaching in each relevant area with space for Flannery to sign his name. 

Flannery said he was “not surprised, but disappointed and saddened” by the Vatican’s response. “In my view, it is a document that, both in tone and content, would be more at home in the 19th century. I could not possibly sign those propositions,” he said. 

He insisted that the issue of the ordination of women is now “freely discussed in the church,” saying he has been “on record for many years now in supporting, indeed emphasizing the necessity, of full equality for women, including ordination. How could I possibly sign that first proposition?” 

In 1994, St. John Paul II said the question about women being ordained was not possible because Jesus chose only men as his apostles. Pope Francis in 2016 affirmed the stance. 

Flannery also said he held the same beliefs about “official Church language on homosexuality and homosexual relationships,” which he described as “appalling. I could not submit to it. As regards same-sex marriage, I voted in favor of it. I don’t know enough about gender theory to have any strong views on it, and I don’t know where that one came from.” 

Church teaching holds that a valid marriage can exist only between one man and one woman. He felt this was “the end of the line in terms of priestly ministry for me. I could not possibly have any more dealings with a body that produces such a document. Life is too short, especially at 73.” 

There was no immediate response from the press office of the Irish Catholic bishops’ conference.

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3 Responses

  1. K.J. GEORGE says:

    Sex is the physical manifestation of love between two persons a male and a female. It is as important for human beings like food and water.  The times have changed.. People enjoy sex and as they want to avoid any unwanted pregnancy they use condoms – the story of inventing condoms was like this. One English King (King Edward?) had 28 children outside the palace and three children in the palace. So his doctor named Condom invented this and asked his King to use it whenever he engaged in sex..Catholics were prohibited the use of it and asked the faithful to tell the priest while confessing and ask for forgiveness. Ridiculous proposition. Any man in his right sense expect to speak about during confession.?

    The Church must stop altogether its hate of homosexuality. There is no valid basis for this hate. If two people get satisfaction by homosexual acts leave them alone. The world and human beings are busy with so many things and every day of life is a struggle and has no time to concern themselves with such matters.

  2. George Nedumparambil says:

    Catholic Church needs to review the contents of Mass.  Mass commemorates Jesus' death in the most violent way.  But don't forget that Jesus was sent by his father just for this purpose!  What would 21st Century will say of a father commissioning his son to become a sacrificial lamb? The expectation and values have changed and would deem such a father a criminal and punish him either with capital punishment or incarceration for a long period.  Church should drop Eucharistic ceremony from Mass.  Instead, singing of psalms and reciting of Jesus' sayings and short sermons based on saying of all prophets including that of Jesus could form the content of Mass.  Drop the communion service in its present format and institute a symbolic sharing of food through distribution of host.  No mystery and no supernatural transformation.    Church cannot be living in 4th CE.

  3. Kurien Joseph says:

    I'm fully in agreement with the courageous Fr Tony Flannery.

    Unfortunately, throughout the world, and especially here in the US, where I live, the Church seems to be going backwards, in spite of its being led by Francis, one of the most genuine Christians we have seen in public life and easily the most enlightened Pope in decades.

    It would be a waste of time to reiterate the obvious answers to all the nonsensical statements the Church hierarchy wants Fr Flannery to endorse formally. So I'll stick to just two:

    1) "No women priests because Jesus appointed only men". Does it take more than a school child to understand that Jesus was a historical man of his time and that he lived within a certain social ambience? [That is always the reason – quite rightly – given to explain the Church's stands against Galileo, against Michelangelo, and for the Inquisition, as instances – that they must all be understood because they all happened within a certain historical ambience/] Also, he had only three years of preaching on earth, so he certainly could not cover every social problem. However, leave that aside for a moment. Every one of Jesus's apostles was a Jew, so how come we have non-Jews as priests? Italian popes, blue-eyed Americans, Germans and Nordic bishops, Chinese and African and Indian bishops? What a puerile argument!

    2) Years ago, when a lay Catholic theologian stated that Jesus was a layman, a very senior Archbishop (India) took umbrage. No, he pontificated, Jesus was our High Priest. Sure, but that was a subsequent Church teaching (or interpretation). Within his own ambience (which is the basis of the absurd thesis that only men can be priests) Jesus was neither of the tribe of Levi (the priestly tribe) nor ever came close to claiming or coveting the position of the Jewish High Priest of the time. nor of any of the Temple priests. So, very clearly, he was a layman in historical terms. Any other interpretation is theological, Christological or whateverlogical, but NOT a fact of history. 

    And now re Sex and Celibacy.

    Is the Church obsessed with sex, as Dr James Kottoor and several other writers have asserted? I believe it is, ever since the Middle Ages, where celibacy became a reaction against the horrendously scandalous lives of the Church hierarchy, starting with the Popes. Today, a significant segment of canonized saints (again a very disputable system) are given the honorifics "Virgin and Martyr" or even just "Virgin". What has virginity got to do with the practice of faith? What about all the men and women who over the centuries have lived the faith, bringing up children, often sacrificing their health and worldly comfort? Was their faith any less strong – or heroic?

    Again, if you use the early church as an example, how many of the first apostles were celibate? Certainly not Peter. Jesus honored him by visiting his home and curing his mother-in-law. A celibate clergy (basking in its self-given "higher state" of celibacy) insists on preaching to the laity that contraception is wrong, because the fundamental purpose of sex is procreation. (Pre-marriage counselling is the exclusive domain of celibate priests!)

    Let me make myself clear here. There have been countless men and women who have dedicated their lives to the Church as priests, nuns and religious, in the best and purest way of life. They have served till it hurt, they have given away everything in order to follow their Master's command to love others. I myself owe it so much to so many of these in my development – and in my love for the Church. 

    But you will rarely find these genuine servers claiming privilege because of their sacrifices. They live to serve – they don't serve to dominate. It is a completely different cleric that claims entitlement and it is these clerics (men and women) that I find objectionable and a clear and present danger to the mystical body of Christ.

    Coming back to the contraception question. There is of course a clear counter argument. While the ultimate purpose of sex may be procreation, who is to decide that every sex act has to be for procreation? What about all the scientific evidence that sex adds to happiness and wellbeing and. most importantly, that it builds up the love and closeness between the partners?

    And here's a parallel.The fundamental purpose of eating and drinking is to sustain the body and keep it in continued health. So, is (God forbid!) enjoying your food sinful? Is it sinful to eat more than the bare minimum or (heavens!) to over-eat once in a while or to drink a glass or two of alcohol (not required for sustenance) over what one can hold? If so, why doesn't the Church preach with equal vehemence and with just as much fire and brimstone against five-star and other hotels – or pubs? On the contrary, it is hardly uncommon to see the Hierarchy indulging itself at these establishments.

    The good thing here is that, for once, the laity, for decades now, has simply taken in the preaching through one ear – and ejected it through the other. Artificial contraception is clearly the rule rather than the exception among millions of one- or two-child Catholic families. 

    Clearly, the hierarchy has lost credibility completely with the laity on this issue of Contraception. My fear is that the Church, a potential force for immense good but sadly hijacked by clericalism, will, by its hierarchy's uncharitable and bullheaded stances against gay people, will lose complete credibility with its laity on this issue too. It has to get its scholars to go deep into the question of homosexuality: is it nature or nurture? That is, are you BORN with homosexual genes, for example? If so, how can that be a sin? If nature is giving you those genes, how can that be against nature? Most importantly, like Pope Francis, do not rush in to judge.

    Of course, that doesn't make the Pope beloved of the reactionary hordes it the Church, but that's another story.

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