Monday, May 02, 2005

LaSalle Academy Religion professor, Kevin Regan, takes issue with Rev. Raymond Suriani
(Projo.com article May 2, 2005)
St. Vincent of Lirens

Rev. Suriani stated that ‘pundits in the secular media’…think the Pope needs to change Church teaching on abortion, contraception, embryonic stem cell research, women priests, etc…”
The issues that Rev. Suriani mentions are matters of faith and morals, unable to change, regardless of recent polls or the majority opinion. However, Mr. Regan states that Rev. Suriani has “implied an
assumption that the teachings of Jesus and the Apostles and the rich deposit of faith have been handed down to the church as a block of truth unchanged since the Apostolic age. But change has been intrinsic to understanding the truths of the Faith from the beginning.”

PADRE POINT: Mr. Regan, that was not an implied assumption but OBJECTIVE TRUTH!
Mr. Regan’s misunderstanding comes by way of the ‘development’ of doctrine.
St. Vincent of Lerins beautifully wrote, On the "Development" of the Christian Faith, that “those ancient doctrines of heavenly philosophy should, as time goes on, be cared for, smoothed, polished; but not that they should be changed, not that they should be maimed, not that they should be mutilated.”In other words, we will all develop physically, spiritually, intellectually, etc…but we will always remain the same person in our very essence. In like manner, the deposit of faith doesn’t change in essence but can be ‘smoothed or polished’. Unfortunately, the long wish list of modern dissenters are nothing more than attempts to maim or even mutilate the deposit of faith.

Such an example comes by way of the feminist Harvard professor, Elisabeth Schüssler Fiorenza, whom Mr. Regan appeals to for support. In a keynote address, Equality: A Radical Democratic Ekklesial Vision at a conference of the dissenting organization, Call to Action, she states that the ‘ethos of control and domination founds the Vatican's rejection of democratic practices in the church and its fear of women's ordination.’ Fiorenza like many others, think the Church can simply change the nature of the priesthood based upon a cry for rights or majority vote. The refusal to change matters of faith and morals is not a power play by the Vatican but rather obedience and fidelity to the Truth, always safeguarding and protecting the teachings of Christ!

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