Moral Collapse

News: Commentary
by Paul Brock  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  April 19, 2021   

The result of modernism

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In 1907, Pope St. Pius X condemned modernism in his encyclical Pascendi Dominici Gregis. He referred to "men speaking perverse things [and] vain talkers and seducers" with relation to members of "the ranks of the priesthood itself." According to the pope, "relying upon a false conscience, they attempt to ascribe to a love of truth that which is, in reality, the result of pride and obstinacy." 

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George Tyrrell and Alfred Loisy

Servant of God Fr. John Hardon identified George Tyrrell and Alfred Loisy as two of the main forces behind the modernist movement in the Church. 

George Tyrrell was an Irish Jesuit priest in the late 19th century who attempted to evolve and adapt Catholic theology in the context of modern ideas.

He wrote the book Hard Sayings in 1898. In it, the modernist priest speaks of the Church having an "infinite evolution," adding that "the best thought of every age finds its highest ideals satisfied and surpassed."

Tyrrell was excommunicated in 1908, one year after Pope Pius' encyclical. He died one year after his excommunication while refusing to renounce his modernist views.

Alfred Louisy, a French priest, was also excommunicated in 1908. He wrote the book The Gospel and the Church in 1903. He, like Tyrrell, endorsed the idea of the so-called evolution of Christianity. Loisy, again like Tyrrell, died failing to recant his heresy.

In 2016, Cdl. Raymond Burke, speaking of Fr. Hardon, said, "He saw how decades of a thin and even false catechesis had created a situation in which many Catholics were illiterate regarding the Faith."

This false catechesis ... always results in the moral collapse of any society.

This false catechesis, which is necessarily followed by Catholic illiteracy, always results in the moral collapse of any society. Today, modernism (false catechesis) has resulted in the moral collapse of American culture.

Significant Years, Rulings in the Collapse

The years 1965, 1969, 1973 and 2015 are significant in recent American history:

In 1965, although found nowhere in the U.S. Constitution, the Supreme Court ruled that married couples have a so-called right of privacy to use contraceptives.

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In 1969, California's no-fault divorce law, the first in the nation, got the ball rolling for every other state. Ten years later, this caused Stuart B. Walzer, a prominent matrimonial attorney at the time, to say "Divorce has become part of the American way of life."

1973 is most well-known as another — this time more grievous — intrinsic evil was legalized. The Supreme Court ruled out of thin air that the word "person" does not include the unborn. 

In 2015, the sacrament of marriage was redefined by the Supreme Court when it ruled 5–4 in favor of the so-called right to same-sex marriage.

Attitudinal Consequences 

These evils are not just legal, but widely accepted:

  • With contraception, 93% of Americans do not believe birth control is morally wrong
  • With divorce, 82% do not believe it's morally wrong
  • With abortion, almost a full 80%, four out of every five Americans, believe it should be legal 
  • And with homosexuality, it’s 72% of Americans who say it should be accepted by society

Among self-described Catholics, the false catechesis of modernism has proven to thoroughly corrupt the laity:

  • With contraception, as of 2015, 76% of self-described Catholics believe the Church should allow them to use birth control
  • And among Catholics who attend Mass weekly, just 13% say contraception is morally wrong (that's almost 90% of Mass-going Catholics rejecting the Church's teaching on contraception)
  • With divorce, almost half of all self-described Catholics believe it's not a sin to remarry after a divorce without an annulment
  • With abortion, as of 2020, 56% of Catholics say it should be legal in all or most cases
  • And with homosexuality, 61% of Catholics believe gay so-called marriage should be legal 

Among these four evils that have been accepted by the culture as well as by self-identified Catholics, the two that have been significantly pushed by liberal prelates are contraception and homosexuality. 

Church: Unwavering on Contraception

Looking at contraception, this evil has always been condemned by the Church.

Among self-described Catholics, the false catechesis of modernism has proven to thoroughly corrupt the laity.

In 1930, when Anglicans became the first Christian denomination to accept contraception, Pope Pius XI, in his encyclical Casti Connubii, reaffirmed the Church's unwavering teaching that those who use contraception, "sin against nature and commit a deed which is shameful and intrinsically vicious."

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Pope Pius XI

Almost 40 years later and virtually every other Christian denomination folded like the Anglicans and accepted the evil of contraception.

Three years after the United States legalized it in 1965, Pope Paul VI crushed the hopes of liberal Catholics who wished the Church would evolve with the times like Tyrrell and Loisy wanted. In his 1968 encyclical Humanae Vitae, the pope stated again what the Church has always taught — that "sexual intercourse which is deliberately contraceptive [is] intrinsically wrong." 

After the encyclical was published, 87 Roman Catholic theologians (52 of them priests) signed a statement openly rejecting the Church's infallible teaching on contraception. The statement said the encyclical was "insensitive to the witness of many men of goodwill [as] it fails to acknowledge the witness of the separated Christian churches." 

To show how far astray these separated Christian so-called churches have gone from their roots, the man who started the Protestant revolution against the Catholic Church was vehemently against contraception. Martin Luther said about contraception: "This is a most disgraceful sin. It is far more atrocious than incest and adultery. We call it unchastity, yes, a sodomitic sin." 

The statement signed by theologians against Humanae Vitae wrapped up in true modernist fashion saying, "The encyclical demonstrates no development over the teaching of Pius XI's Casti Connubii."

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Cdl. Bernardin, Aux. Bp. Rodriguez and Raymond Goedert

Hierarchy Defiant on Homosexuality

Looking to homosexuality, the desire for the Church to evolve on this issue has been pushed for decades by the most influential members of the hierarchy.

On June 30, 1991, Cdl. Joseph Bernardin offered Mass at Resurrection Catholic Church in Chicago, Illinois with a rainbow flag hanging over the crucifix and obscuring it. Beside him was Placido Rodriguez, an auxiliary bishop of Chicago at the time, and Raymond Goedert, who was vicar general of the archdiocese of Chicago and was consecrated bishop by Bernardin a week later. 

Today, the push for the embrace of what the Church infallibly teaches is intrinsically evil is prevalent among many in the hierarchy. Fourteen successors of the Apostles here, including one cardinal, signed off on a statement telling LGBT youth that "God is on your side."

St. Paul teaches, "Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither the immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor robbers will inherit the kingdom of God."

Confirming Sacred Scripture, the Catechism teaches "homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered. They are contrary to the natural law. ... Under no circumstances can they be approved."

Watch the entire episode of Mic'd Up—Moral Collapse

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