Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Vatican cardinal warns against syncretism in dialogue; Polish prelate speaks of Divine Mercy

Catholic World News - October 11, 2012

On the fourth day of the Thirteenth Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, 16 synod fathers spoke on various aspects of the synod’s theme, “The New Evangelization for the Transmission of the Christian Faith.”

Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, president of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, warned that poorly-catechized Christians should not take part in interreligious dialogue.

“Christians, often ignorant of the content of their own faith and incapable because of this of living of and for it, are not capable of interreligious dialogue that always begins with the assertion of one’s own convictions,” he cautioned. “There is no room for syncretism or relativism! Faced with adepts from other religions with a strong religious identity, it is necessary to present motivated and doctrinally equipped Christians.”

“This makes the new evangelization a priority to form coherent Christians, capable of demonstrating their faith, with simple words and without fear,” he added. “Interreligious dialogue thus becomes an occasion for deepening and witnessing one’s faith.”

Echoing a theme from the synod’s previous day, an Argentine prelate lamented dissent from the Magisterium.

“The theological and philosophical errors which circulate in academic centers, seminaries and novitiates and which are spread through preaching and catechesis, give rise to confusion among the people of God, and are included among the causes of the present situation of faith,” said Archbishop Héctor Aguer of La Plata. “The New Evangelization requires the overcoming of these defects which weaken the certitude of the faith; for this reason, the formation of pastoral agents must correspond to the Magisterium of the Church.”

Bishop Christopher Prowse of Sale, Australia, called for the drafting of a compendium of the initial proclamation of the Gospel. The Catechism of the Catholic Church, he said, “has been a particular grace of the Holy Spirit. It continues to inspire catechesis throughout the Church. Is it time now to attempt a similar kind of compilation on the initial proclamation of the Catholic Church?”

Archbishop Ricardo Blázquez Pérez of Valladolid, Spain, briefly criticized Latin in the liturgy (“for a great deal of time the extraneousness of Latin concealed the ignorance of Sacred Scripture, while now this lack is rising to the surface”), while Cardinal Vinko Puljic of Bosnia-Herzegovina said that holy marriages are the foundation of the new evangelization:

The New Evangelization will succeed if it manages to restore the sanctity of marriage, which is the family nest of love, in such a way that it becomes a little Church. Then, the parochial community will become a powerful motor of evangelization, because it will have strong drivers leading it toward God.

The most powerful thing in evangelization is the encounter with Christ, knowing how to love and accept Christ. This occurs by means of the deepest witness of faith. The family is the strongest witness to the faith, which it transmits with its heart.

Concluding the synod fathers’ deliberations, Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz of Krakow said that devotion to the Divine Mercy can lead the men of today out of their “interior desert.”

“One thing is certain,” he said. “Science is not enough. Documents are not enough. Our Church structures are not enough. These do not quite reach the heart of man.”

“A characteristic sign of our times is that the Church today speaks much more effectively when she expresses herself with the message of Divine Mercy,” he added. “God used a humble religious, Saint Faustina Kowalska, as he did a wise and holy shepherd, Cardinal Karol Wojtyla - John Paul II, so that the eternal truth of God rich in faithful love would resound in a more revealing way in today’s restless world … It seems that man today has managed to preserve within himself a sensitivity toward a disinterested mercy. And this itself - God’s mercy which influences his fate - makes itself heard and touches the deepest chords of the human heart.”

The synod fathers’ interventions took place after the election of the leaders of the synod’s working groups and before a talk by Archbishop Rowan Williams of Canterbury, primate of the Anglican Communion.

Additional sources for this story
Some links will take you to other sites, in a new window.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach five million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Progress toward our April expenses ($19,134 to go):
$35,000.00 $15,866.48
55% 45%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

There are no comments yet for this item.

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Smaller Church, Bigger Faith, 3: Ecclesiastical Discipline April 17
The Holy Spirit and Evangelization: A Primer April 16
Journey to the Sun: A Strange Biography of Junípero Serra April 16
Russia's demographic recovery + US demographic decline = danger April 16
James Carroll strikes (at the Church) again April 16

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days