LifeSiteNews

Dear Benjamin,
The situation in the Catholic Church has become critical. In the opinion of Italy’s leading Catholic historian we are currently in a crisis even ‘worse’ than the Arian crisis! 

Whether you agree with this dire prognosis or not, it has become distressingly difficult to comprehend the confusions about the truths of Christ on marriage and the family coming even from the highest levels of the Church. 

Just last week Cardinal Reinhard Marx, one of the pope’s closest advisors, publicly issued a disturbing statement saying that the Catholic Church must “apologize” to homosexuals, and that it is the duty of the state to give same-sex couples the same rights and protections as marriage! When I read his statement, I could hardly believe my eyes.

Imagine my shock and sadness when, days later, Pope Francis was asked about Cardinal Marx’s statement, and instead of rebuking him, agreed that the Catholic Church must apologize to homosexuals whom it has “offended.” In a statement that has been seized upon by LGBT activists the world over, the Holy Father even explicitly spoke against giving “theological” reasons for condemning homosexuality. 

Confusion, and more confusion!

As a Catholic, I love the Holy Father, and pray for him every single day. But as the editor of a news website devoted to life and family issues, I am also convinced that it is the duty of all Catholics to proclaim the Church’s life-giving teachings on life, marriage and family courageously, prayerfully, charitably, and without compromise!

Perhaps we should not be surprised that we find ourselves in these confusing times. Heaven did warn us that times like these were coming. “Even the elect, if it be possible, will be confused,” says Our Lord in the Gospel of Matthew.  

In a letter by Fatima seer Sister Lucia to Cardinal Caffara, she revealed Our Lady’s warning that “the final battle between the Lord and the reign of Satan will be about marriage and the family.”

“Don’t be afraid, because anyone who works for the sanctity of marriage and the family will always be fought and opposed in every way, because this is the decisive issue,” Our Lady added. And then Sr. Lucia concluded: “however, Our Lady has already crushed its head.”

This year at the Rome Life Forum – an annual gathering of international Catholic pro-life and pro-family activists founded by LifeSite – 120 leaders from all over the world came together to discuss the difficulties now being experienced inside the Church.

With very few exceptions, all these leaders said they feel the most serious challenge they are currently facing is the crippling confusion coming from the Vatican.

They feel so despite the fact that they are battling abortion, contraception, same-sex “marriage”, transgender extremism, and attacks on religious freedom at unprecedented and frightening levels.

The only way we are going to end this confusion is by approaching the challenges facing us in a prayerful spirit, and then arming faithful Catholics with the information they need to stand for the faith – and we can’t do that without you!

Various bishops have encouraged us to act now to assist the Church. “It is the time of the laity,” Bishop Schneider told us, regarding the hour of crisis in the Church.

We need to speak up and to pray and fast like never before. The faithful bishops and clergy need us to do so. 

The choice of many Church authorities to pull back from teaching the truth about the eternal consequences of the sins of abortion, contraception, and homosexuality have not only caused mass confusion in the Church, it has led to all kinds of atrocities, the most grievous one being the loss of souls.

Pope Francis believes the Church to be over-focused on the moral matters which plague our generation. In truth, we hardly ever hear homilies on contraception, abortion, homosexuality, and the rest. Catechesis on chastity and modesty has been dismal to non-existent. 

What do we hear from many of our clergy, and even today from the Pope? Often the very same “values” preached incessantly by the secular world – gun control, unfettered immigration, vague calls for “non-discrimination,” combating climate change, and ending the death penalty.

While Catholics of good will can certainly debate these issues, we tread down a dangerous path if the Catholic Church seeks to curry favor with the world by emphasizing only popular causes, and ignoring the “hard” teachings of Christ and his Church. 

Therefore, let us lovingly and respectfully plead with our spiritual leaders, including our Holy Father, to embrace the hard teachings of Christ, despite their unpopularity.

They must be urged to embrace the heavy cross, following in the footsteps of Our Lord. We must pray earnestly, with fasting, that they “preach the word: be urgent in season, and out of season: convince, rebuke, and exhort, be unfailing in patience and in teaching” (2 Tim. 4:2). 

We have nothing to fear, the battle is the Lord’s and He has already won. We are on the winning team, despite what the situation may look like. Ours is but to do our best to carry out the will of God in our lives and accept even with thanks all the circumstances He sends our way.  

As Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI said in his Easter Homily in 2012, the Resurrection of Jesus assures us that: “Life is stronger than death. Good is stronger than evil. Love is stronger than hate. Truth is stronger than lies.”

In Christ and Our Lady,

John-Henry Westen

Editor-in-Chief and Co-Founder, LifeSiteNews.com

Copyright © 2016 LifeSiteNews.com, All rights reserved. 

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