Spiritual Malpractice

by Datechguy | July 31st, 2014

Readability

Spiritual Malpractice

Car­di­nal Lam­berto: Look at this stone, it has been lying in the water for a very long time, but the water has not pen­e­trated it. [Breaks it open] Look, per­fectly dry. The same thing has hap­pened to men in Europe. For cen­turies they have been sur­rounded by Chris­tian­ity, but Christ has not pen­e­trated. Christ doesn’t live within them.

The God­fa­ther Part 3 1990

In a few years the anniver­sary of the Protes­tant Ref­or­ma­tion is com­ing up, while thou­sands of Protes­tant denom­i­na­tions will doubt­less cel­e­brate this event and I can’t help but sus­pect that if Mar­tin Luther knew the result of his break with Rome he would have never done it.

Nary a month seems to pass when passes when we hear of one protes­tant con­gre­ga­tion vot­ing to rede­fine sin or change doc­trine for the sake of get­ting peo­ple back in the pews or get­ting in touch with the times or what­ever such excuse we hear caus­ing schism within schism (it is no coin­ci­dence that many peo­ple see­ing these changes have found their way back to Rome).

While doc­tri­nally the Catholic Church has not gone that way there are plenty in it who would like to see that route taken, par­tic­u­larly in acad­e­mia and media. This has been the cause of a lot of trou­ble in the church over the past 50 years. But more impor­tantly than trou­ble for the church has been what is the risk it has meant for the faithful.

A great exam­ple is the doc­trine of Hell.

Hoaxes not with­stand­ing this Pope has preached on Hell an awful lot.

How­ever many priests tend to dodge the sub­ject, the media down­plays or mocks it plenty of priests tend to duck an issue that gen­er­ates snick­ers from our sec­u­lar world. To this I give a quote from Fr. Mar­cel Nault who died in 1997 a priest who con­stantly preached on Hell:

One can­not spe­cial­ize and preach every­thing, but the Lord Jesus invited me to preach on Hell. A mon­signor said to me, “Mar­cel, don’t preach on Hell. Peo­ple don’t like that, you scare them.” And in a very friendly way that Mon­signor said to me, “Mar­cel, I have never preached on Hell and look at the posi­tion I have. I will never preach on Hell.”

After a long silence, I looked him in the eye and said, “Mon­signor, you are on the road to Hell for all eter­nity. You preach, Mon­signor, to please the crowd, instead of preach­ing to please Christ.”

Let me remind all that the pri­mary pur­pose of any priest pas­tor or min­is­ter of any type is to keep peo­ple from damna­tion. That’s the goal and the bot­tom line and you don’t achieve this avoid­ing painful truths.

Let me put it another way, yes­ter­day I went for a Colonoscopy, it is a very effec­tive way to check for early signs of Col­orec­tal can­cer. Any polyp found and removed is screened for can­cer. My radio co-​host had can­cer dis­cov­ered in one such screen­ing because it was caught early he was able to receive treat­ment and has been can­cer free for years since.

This is my sec­ond such exam and let me tell you the prep work is VERY unpleas­ant, worse that the exam itself but it can save your life

Now imag­ine if I decided that because the exam prep was unpleas­ant I decided not to do it. Or pic­ture if the doc­tor after find­ing a polyp decided not to test it or if he found can­cer decided not to tell me about it because it would scare me?

The for­mer would be an act of stu­pid­ity on my part or an act of mal­prac­tice on his.

When­ever a Chris­t­ian pas­tor of any denom­i­na­tion entrusted with a flock decides that he is going to preach the pop­u­lar rather than the truth, who decides that doc­trine doesn’t mean a thing, who sac­ri­fices the sacra­ments and the truth for the sake of pop­u­lar opin­ion they are com­mit­ting mal­prac­tice only the price of the set­tle­ment is a lot higher than any pre­mium an insur­ance com­pany will charge.

And in the end that has been the fruit of the Ref­or­ma­tion. Lit­tle by lit­tle it walked away or aban­doned unpleas­ant or unpop­u­lar truths and since any per­son could rein­ter­pret scrip­ture or a con­gre­ga­tion could decide what was true by a vote it slowly wore faith away.

When it came into being Chris­tian­ity was the reli­gion of Europe and thanks to the efforts of the Catholic Church it was ready to spread into the new world. It has taken Chris­tian­ity 1500 years to reach that point.

It only took the ref­or­ma­tion 500 years turn Europe into a place where Chris­tian­ity is so diluted and divided that within a gen­er­a­tion or two Islam will take from indif­fer­ence what it could not take by the sword.

What a shame.

Cardinal Lamberto: Look at this stone, it has been lying in the water for a very long time, but the water has not penetrated it. [Breaks it open] Look, perfectly dry. The same thing has happened to men in Europe. For centuries they have been surrounded by Christianity, but Christ has not penetrated. Christ doesn’t live within them.

The Godfather Part 3 1990

In a few years the anniversary of the Protestant Reformation is coming up, while thousands of Protestant denominations will doubtless celebrate this event and I can’t help but suspect that if Martin Luther knew the result of his break with Rome he would have never done it.

Nary a month seems to pass when passes when we hear of one protestant congregation voting to redefine sin or change doctrine for the sake of getting people back in the pews or getting in touch with the times or whatever such excuse we hear causing schism within schism (it is no coincidence that many people seeing these changes have found their way back to Rome).

While doctrinally the Catholic Church has not gone that way there are plenty in it who would like to see that route taken, particularly in academia and media. This has been the cause of a lot of trouble in the church over the past 50 years. But more importantly than trouble for the church has been what is the risk it has meant for the faithful.

A great example is the doctrine of Hell.

Hoaxes not withstanding this Pope has preached on Hell an awful lot.

However many priests tend to dodge the subject, the media downplays or mocks it plenty of priests tend to duck an issue that generates snickers from our secular world. To this I give a quote from Fr. Marcel Nault who died in 1997 a priest who constantly preached on Hell:

One cannot specialize and preach everything, but the Lord Jesus invited me to preach on Hell. A monsignor said to me, “Marcel, don’t preach on Hell. People don’t like that, you scare them.” And in a very friendly way that Monsignor said to me, “Marcel, I have never preached on Hell and look at the position I have. I will never preach on Hell.”

After a long silence, I looked him in the eye and said, “Monsignor, you are on the road to Hell for all eternity. You preach, Monsignor, to please the crowd, instead of preaching to please Christ.”

Let me remind all that the primary purpose of any priest pastor or minister of any type is to keep people from damnation. That’s the goal and the bottom line and you don’t achieve this avoiding painful truths.

Let me put it another way, yesterday I went for a Colonoscopy, it is a very effective way to check for early signs of Colorectal cancer. Any polyp found and removed is screened for cancer. My radio co-host had cancer discovered in one such screening because it was caught early he was able to receive treatment and has been cancer free for years since.

This is my second such exam and let me tell you the prep work is VERY unpleasant, worse that the exam itself but it can save your life

Now imagine if I decided that because the exam prep was unpleasant I decided not to do it. Or picture if the doctor after finding a polyp decided not to test it or if he found cancer decided not to tell me about it because it would scare me?

The former would be an act of stupidity on my part or an act of malpractice on his.

Whenever a Christian pastor of any denomination entrusted with a flock decides that he is going to preach the popular rather than the truth, who decides that doctrine doesn’t mean a thing, who sacrifices the sacraments and the truth for the sake of popular opinion they are committing malpractice only the price of the settlement is a lot higher than any premium an insurance company will charge.

And in the end that has been the fruit of the Reformation.   Little by little it walked away or abandoned unpleasant or unpopular truths  and since any person could reinterpret scripture or a congregation could decide what was true by a vote it slowly wore faith away.

When it came into being Christianity was the religion of Europe and thanks to the efforts of the Catholic Church it was ready to spread into the new world. It has taken Christianity 1500 years to reach that point.

It only took the reformation 500 years turn Europe into a place where Christianity is so diluted and divided that within a generation or two Islam will take from indifference what it could not take by the sword.

What a shame.

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