The “progressive” Zeitgeist, Dr. Cernea argued, has deluded people into the false belief that they can take control of their lives—replace God as the center of their lives—to achieve happiness in this world. In a culture that promotes this ideology, salvation is found in this world not in the Kingdom of God.
In today’s third and final post concerning Dr. Cernea’s speech, The Motley Monk details and comments upon what she told Pope Francis and the prelates assembled at the Synod this “new normal” requires of them.
It’s the task of the shepherds to recognize it, and warn the flock against this danger.
“Seek ye therefore first the Kingdom of God, and His justice, and all these things shall be added unto you.”
But, as media of both the left and right have been reporting the events transpiring at the Synod, the focus seems to have been primarily how to encourage people, groups, of people and entire cultures to feel more comfortable with the Church. To The Motley Monk, that sounds more like a marketing strategy, one that involves not just by the repackaging the Church’s global brand but reforming what Scripture and Tradition teach, as this has been suggested by some of those prelates attending the Synod.
Of that agenda, Dr. Cernea said:
The Church’s mission is to save souls. Evil, in this world, comes from sin. Not from income disparity or “climate change.” The solution is: Evangelization. Conversion.
Not an ever increasing government control. Not a world government. These are nowadays the main agents imposing cultural Marxism to our nations, under the form of population control, reproductive health, gay rights, gender education, and so on.
What the world needs nowadays is not limitation of freedom, but real freedom, liberation from sin. Salvation.
Reflecting on the experience of Romanian Greek Catholics during the Soviet occupation, when Church leaders don’t cower before the forces of this world, Dr. Cernea noted, the Church will survive:
Our Church was suppressed by the Soviet occupation. But none of our 12 bishops betrayed their communion with the Holy Father. Our Church survived thanks to our bishops’ determination and example in resisting prisons and terror.
Our bishops asked the community not to follow the world. Not to cooperate with the Communists.
What did she suggest those leaders must do? Dr. Cernea said:
Now we need Rome to tell the world: “Repent of your sins and turn to God for the Kingdom of Heaven is near”….Because, as they say, if the Catholic Church gives in to the spirit of this world, it is going to be very difficult for all the other Christians to resist it.
Yet, some have persuasively argued that “progressive Christianity” has made it impossible for the Reformers to recognize the denominations they founded!
In the early 1370s, Catherine of Siena accepted a personal vocation to reform the papacy, the clergy, and the administration of the Papal States which had become corrupted as Church leaders focused upon life in this world. Speaking truth to power—Popes Gregory XI and Urban VI, in particular—Catherine sacrificed herself for the unity of the Church. Her heroic efforts ultimately brought about needed reform as the Church's leaders repented of their sin, converted to the Truth of Christ, and courageously resisted what had become the “new normal.” In 1970, Pope Paul VI made Catherine a “Doctor of the Church.”
In October 2015, a little-known physician journeyed from Bucharest, Romania, to Rome and spoke truth to power at the Synod on the Family. Dr. Anca-Maria Cernea told Pope Francis and the prelates assembled there to be determined and resist the dominant Zeitgeist by not allowing its ideology to co-opt them into promoting its agenda. “Repent,” Dr. Cernea told them, because only Rome has the authority to unite the Church so that She and those who belong to Her will remain in the Truth of Christ.
No wonder the mainstream media didn’t cover Dr. Cernea’s speech. Perhaps history will treat it better.
Let the discussion begin...