Monday was the 100th anniversary of Pope John Paul’s birth. Even while still alive, he was hailed as “the Great.” And although the appellation seems to be falling out of favor these days, I maintain it is more appropriate today than ever before.
Consider that, in the midst of the greatest doctrinal crisis in the history of the Church in which the current pope denies the authority of the Bible and the Ten Commandments, John Paul’s writings stand as the greatest defense against the current errors.
The Pope’s Legacy Under Fire
But today, John Paul’s legacy is threatened from many quarters. Because he was such an incisive critic of sexual liberation theology, his essential text Veritatis Splendor was ignored in Amoris Laetitia. There is not so much as a single mention of the text anywhere in AL. Of course, Francis had to ignore it, for, as the dubia Cardinals demonstrated, Veritatis refuted Amoris Laetitia. Thus, although Francis makes a show of respect to the late pope— by his actions, Francis reveals himself to be John Paul’s enemy. It is no exaggeration to suggest that the very purpose of Amoris was to reverse the doctrinal legacy of Veritatis Splendor. When Francis told the Jesuits that he wanted Bernard Häring’s ideas taught in every seminary, he was effectively defenestrating John Paul, and along with the great pope, all the Doctors, Fathers, and Apostles of the Church. Francis has dismantled John Paul’s institute for marriage and the family, and he and fellow Jesuit James Martin have set their sights on the Catechism as well. Under Jesuit rule, no teachings are safe.
Call it payback for the late pope’s actions against the Jesuit order when John Paul suspended the Jesuit constitution and took direct control of the order.
John Paul Made Enemies
John Paul made enemies, to be sure. He fired heretical theologians. He condemned heretical theology texts. He excommunicated disobedient bishops. He was not wishy-washy. Read my book if you’re fuzzy on the subject. He was an unapologetic defender of divine revelation, Church doctrine, and papal authority. And for that, his enemies from all the various camps and spectrums and –isms have attacked his legacy. Nowadays on social media, it seems that the loudest voices are from his many critics. Here’s an example:
It’s a “fact” that the sexual abuse scandal is 80% John Paul’s fault, is it? My book tells a far different story. Unlike the fact-free tweet above, Confronting the Pope of Suspicion is loaded with facts which show that John Paul fought against the true sources of the scandal. He went after the Jesuits, the theologians, and the heretical theologies that turned our priests into sex zombies.
Defending John Paul II at New Walden
It is the official editorial position of NewWalden that the only proper defense of the Church is the one that defends John Paul II. And because John Paul was a Vatican II pope, a defense of John Paul implies, as well, a defense of Vatican II. So expect the occasional posting that tackles traditionalist critiques of Vatican II and John Paul II. Which brings me to a piece of related news.
Manna From Heaven
In an amazing turn of events, a new writing of the late pope has been discovered. I’ve just started reading it, and I can tell you that it speaks to our times more authoritatively than anyone alive in the Church today. And the issue that John Paul is addressing is one that he gets criticized for by the “trads”: evangelization, or the lack of it, as they see it. I will be reviewing this book soon, so stay tuned. (Book image links to Amazon.)
The President Honors Pope John Paul II
On a lighter note, it was heartening to see that President Trump remembered John Paul’s birthday. It’s important to appreciate these lighter moments while we still have them. Take nothing for granted: