Christian unity, the response to a silent apostasy?

Source: FSSPX News

On 24 January, Benedict XVI recited the Angelus with the faithful present at St Peter’s Square.  Before the prayer, he quoted the First Epistle of St Paul to the Corinthians in which the Apostle compares the Church to the human body: the Church is like a body, of which Christ is the head, and which forms one single whole with Him.

In the presence of representatives of different religions and ecclesial communities, the Pope then recalled “the Week of prayer for Christian Unity – on the theme Be witnesses to these things – which finishes on the feast of the conversion of Saint Paul.” On this occasion, continued Benedict XVI, “we ask God to grant us full unity of all the disciples of Christ,” so that “the Christian communion may render the proclamation of the Gospel more credible and effective.”

On 26 January, in the basilica of St-Paul-Outside-the-Walls, the Holy Father presided over second vespers of the feast of the Conversion of St Paul. In his homily, the Pope continued on the theme of the week of prayer as an “invitation to be witnesses of the risen Christ, according to the mandate confided to His Disciples”. He explains that “this wish to proclaim Christ to others and to announce His message of forgiveness stumbles upon a contradiction, which is the division among Christians.” This is why, continues the Pope, “the unity and communion of Christ’s disciples are therefore an essential condition to increase the credibility and effectiveness of their witness.”

The sovereign pontiff then underlined how « in a world that is marked by religious indifference, and even by a growing aversion towards the Christian faith, it is necessary to begin a new and more intense evangelisation; not only among peoples who have never known the Gospel, but also in those societies for whom history has been moulded by the Gospel.”

As for the questions that divide Christians, Benedict XVI expressed his hope that prayer and dialogue would bring unity. “The central content of the Christian message can be proclaimed all together: the fatherhood of God, the victory of Christ over sin and death by His Cross and resurrection, confidence in the action of the Holy Ghost.” This is why, the Pope added, “we are all called together as witnesses in the face of the growing challenges of society, which are secularisation, indifference, relativism and hedonism, and delicate questions like the origin and end of life, the limits of science and technology, or dialogue with other religious traditions.”

During his homily, Benedict XVI also insisted on the fields in which Christians should “give a common witness”, such as “the protection of Creation, the promotion of the common good and of peace, the defence of the central character of the human person,” before asking all Christians to make a “commitment to vanquish the great troubles of our time, such as hunger, destitution, illiteracy, the unequal distribution of wealth.” The Pope concluded with these words: “the effort for unity must not be reserved for a few persons or be an accessory activity in the life of the Church. Every person is called to take part in this effort, without forgetting that unity is above all a gift from God that we must ask for.”

-      Concerning the link between the ecumenism promoted by the Second Vatican Council and the “silent apostasy” denounced by Pope John Paul II in the apostolic exhortation Ecclesia in Europa (28 June 2003), Bishop Bernard Fellay sent a study to all the cardinals of the Catholic Church on 6 January 2004, to which there has been no reply to this day. In the third chapter of this study, we read that “ecumenism generates relativism towards the faith”. Pius XI, in Mortalium animos declared in 1928 that this form of ecumenism “reverses from top to bottom the foundations of the Catholic faith”. In his preface, Bishop Fellay writes that “this ecumenism has destroyed the most beautiful treasures of the Church, because instead of accepting Unity founded on the whole truth, it has wished to build some kind of unity adapted to a truth blended with error”. From Ecumenism to Silent Apostacy. Publication: Letter to Our Brother Priests B.P. 125  F-92154 Suresnes cedex. (DICI n°209 du 06/02/10 - Sources : VIS/apic/imedia)