Friday, September 20, 2019

When Papal Positivism Replaces Tradition

Is it linked to the Jesuits, and what St. Ignatius of Loyola recommended in his Spiritual Exercises? "We should always be prepared so as never to err to believe that what I see as white is black, if the hierarchical Church defines it thus."

Robert Fastiggi:

7. Feser’s rejection of the new teaching of the Church on the death penalty is in direct violation of what Lumen Gentium, 25 teaches about the need to adhere to teachings of the ordinary papal Magisterium “with religious submission of mind and will.” His rejection also violates canon 752 of the 1983 CIC and no. 892 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Feser and his followers do not seem to understand the “argument from authority” that applies to teachings of the ordinary papal magisterium and judgments of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. Catholics who support the new formulation of CCC 2267 are being faithful Catholics. Prof. Feser’s attempt to put such faithful Catholics and the Pope on the defensive suggests that he believes he has more authority than the Roman Pontiff. If he has difficulty accepting the Church’s new teaching on the death penalty he should, in a spirit of humility, make every effort to understand the teaching “with an evangelical spirit and with a profound desire to resolve his difficulties” (CDF, Donum, Vertiatis, 30). I have no difficulty with the new teaching. I hope and pray that Prof. Feser and his followers will overcome their difficulties.

Again, Fastiggi does not realize that he undermines his own case if his claim that capital punishment is a defined [Roman Catholic] dogma is true. If it isn't, then it isn't part of Tradition and any claim pertaining to its moral goodness or evil or permissibility must be a conclusion of moral theology and evaluated in accordance with the logic of sound reasoning. Justifying a claim based on an appeal to the person who said it or his authority (in this case, Pope Francis) would be an appeal to authority, as his authority does not extend to competence with respect to matters of moral theology per se. Perhaps Fastiggi is too attached to his own Latin opinions regarding the role of the pope to realize this.

Regardless of where they stand on various issues, Latins, traditionalists, "conservatives," or "progressives" will not let go of their belief in the [exaggerated] authority of the pope.

No comments: