VATICAN CITY (ChurchMilitant.com) - Pope Francis launched a video promoting religious indifferentism on the eve of Epiphany — the feast on which the Church proclaims Jesus as the light of God's definitive revelation to people of all nations and religions.
Instead of a call to evangelize people of other religions, the pontiff is asking Catholics to unite in prayer as "brothers and sisters" with people worshipping other deities.
In the video issued by the "Pope's Worldwide Prayer Network," Francis states that our "brothers and sisters" are those "who pray," regardless of religious beliefs.
The pope's video opens with a Catholic woman praying the Rosary. It swiftly switches to a Muslim woman with a hijab prostrating on her prayer mat and offering prayer to Allah. It then zooms in on a young Jew wearing a kippah and ṭallit and in the act of prayer.
"When we pray to God following Jesus, we come together as brothers and sisters with those who pray according to other cultures, other traditions and other beliefs," Francis declares in a voiceover.
In a glaring contradiction of the Epiphany message, the pope goes on to limit the gospel to Christians — implying through word and image that, while Christians have Jesus, people of other religions have equally valid paths to salvation.
"The Church values God's action in other religions, without forgetting that, for us Christians, the wellspring of human dignity and fraternity is in the gospel of Jesus Christ," states Francis in the video titled "Pope's Prayer Intention: At the Service of Human Fraternity."
Bishop Restates Uniqueness of Jesus
The video has shocked Catholics and evangelicals who are scandalized at the Masonic heresy of religious indifferentism promoted through the pope's Epiphany message.
In an exclusive interview with Church Militant, Dutch bishop Robert Mutsaerts responded to the video, categorically stating that "the ultimate goal of the Church is to evangelize, to make God known to all men and all nations and defend the truth, God's truth."
"Not any sort of god, but the one God who was born in the stable in Bethlehem. Not any truth or the truth of what is generally accepted, but the one truth which is fully present in Jesus Christ," the auxiliary bishop of the diocese of 's-Hertogenbosch added.
"I know, that does not sound very inclusive, but that is what it is," he stressed, noting that "the child Jesus Christ is hardly mentioned in Fratelli Tutti" — Francis' recent encyclical, a work which blurs the distinction between Christians and people of other religions.
Mutsaerts, known for his faithfulness to the gospel, also expressed concern that Fratelli Tutti and the Economy of Francesco initiative have a "striking resemblance with the secular agenda of our time."
"You have to give it to the secularists: While they dismiss miracles, they put their trust in globalism, the Great Reset, sustainability, Klaus Schwab and Bill Gates. A trust one only finds in fairytales," Mutsaerts remarked, lamenting "the pope's defense of 'inclusive capitalism,' teaming up with moguls who promote and support abortion."
Catholics and Evangelicals Alarmed
Speaking to Church Militant, Fr. Athanasius St. Michel expressed bewilderment about the timing and theme of the video.
"There is a deep pathos in the pope relativizing the figure of Christ as just one figure in the pantheon of world religions on the eve of the feast of the Epiphany, which sets out to draw the world to Christ ... as the unique and only savior," the France-based theologian and cultural critic commented.
"Pope Francis appears to have a view of human nature that derives more from Rousseau and the 18th century than it does from Genesis and the gospels," making "his observations indistinguishable from those of a humanist and the grand Masonic tradition," he noted.
"Humanity can only be saved by repentance and trusting in the Cross, not by the discovery of resources of human benevolence that have never been proved to exist," Fr. Athanasius emphasized.
Eminent evangelical pastor and apologist David Robertson said he was "praying for my Catholic brothers and sisters that you would remain faithful in the midst of such heresy."
"The Catholic Church is in deep trouble if this video reflects the pope's thinking because it is a long way from Catholic teaching — and from the teaching of his predecessor and, even more importantly, from the Bible," Robertson warned, in comments to Church Militant.
"Our Lord Jesus taught that He was the way, the truth and the life; not a way, a truth or a life," the author of Magnificent Obsession: Why Jesus is Great asserted.
Popular author Dcn. Nick Donnelly explained, "It is contrary to the gospel to claim — as Pope Francis does — that people of all religions are brothers and sisters of the Father because we all 'pray.'"
"It is only through faith in the name of Jesus and the sacrament of baptism that He gives 'power to become children of God,'" Donnelly affirmed, quoting John 1:12.
"A Catholic theology of human fraternity would recognize people of different religions being made in the image and likeness of God by the Creator," Donnelly agreed, "but by stating that God is at work in other religions, Pope Francis diminishes the absolutely unique and irreplaceable role of the Church — extra ecclesiam nulla salus."
Solution Lies in a Great Catholic Reset
Rallying Catholics with a message of hope despite a bleak future for Western Catholicism, Bp. Mutsaerts stressed that the solution lies in a "reset, but a reset of a totally different kind."
"The Catholic Church in the West is rapidly decreasing. Is that bad? Yes, it is. But if this is the Church which is now manifesting itself, the sooner she evaporates the better," he opined.
It's better to restart like the young Church started instead of muddling along as we've done for over half a century. It's only driven us from Christ. The Church's future will depend on saints as has always been the case. She will survive for sure as always. She will be small. She will be a Church based on personal commitment.
The bishop described how the reset Church would "put the sacred central — not the environment, inclusive capitalism or false ecumenism that seems to say that it doesn't really matter what you believe or who you put your trust in as long as we call each other brothers and sisters."
"No, I do not promote an exclusive Church: What I do plead for is back to basics," Mutsaerts added, calling for "a temporary withdrawal in order to resource in order to come back stronger."
"The Church will regain credibility," Mutsaerts affirmed.
In his 1928 encyclical Mortalium Animos, Pope Pius XI condemned religious indifferentism as a heresy founded "on that false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good and praiseworthy."
"Not only are those who hold this opinion in error and deceived, but also in distorting the idea of true religion they reject it," Pius XI proclaimed.