Saturday, June 24, 2006

Theologians, or Lupi Rapaces, pt 1

Dad29 has been detailing some of Marqette University theology prof Daniel Maguire's, counter-catholic activities and propagandizing, so I thought I'd do a little digging.

Pope John Paull II, in August of 1990, promulgated a document called Ex Corde Ecclesiae, and was approved for application in the US by the USCCB in November of 1999. This apostolic constitution asserts the authority of the Church in relation to Catholic universities, and much to their ire, catholic theologians. Many catholic theologians have resented and loudly resisted this concept.

Daniel Maguire, much like his peer at Notre Dame, Fr. Richard McBrien, has publicly disparaged Ex Corde Ecclesiae and refused to humbly request a mandate from the local Bishop. Here's Maguire's explanation of his resistance to submitting to the bishop:
"The mandatum would anomalously subject professional theologians to the judgment of those who are outside academe and are not professional theologians. In my judgment, no theologian could accept this without violating the integrity of his or her discipline. It also puts the bishops into the embarrassing and impossible position of judging scholars without the benefit of the appropriate expertise."

He's somehow thinking that being a theologian trumps being catholic, and that his utterances about the Catholic Church should have no accountability.
" Published theologians are always subject to corrective criticism from their peers, that is, from those who are professionally qualified to judge their work."

Hence, the bishop, being a successor to the Apostles, has no business criticising a "catholic" theologian's work.
"However, the focus of Ex Corde is not on the epistemological subtlety of the effect of changed personal commitments on cognitive objectivity. Its mission, as I see it, is thought control and a denial of the legitimacy of the theological magisterium."

That precious "theological magisterium" is only authoritative if it is in harmony with the Magisterium of the Church, not in constant defiance of it. Maguire's activities with Planned Parenthood would incur a latae sententiae excommunication in Lincoln, Nebraska, but I imagine that his own bishop is not so ready to do something so bold. Here's a stumper: Do catholic theologians have to be Catholic?

Matt 7:15-20
"Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves.
"You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they?

"So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit.

"A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit.

"Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.

"So then, you will know them by their fruits.


CPT Tom said...

I find the arrogance of these dissident "Catholic" Theologians to be appalling and profane. Many imagine themselves to be on the same level of the Doctors of the church such as St Thomas,St Augustus, or St Teresa.

I had hoped that since Pope Benedict is a first rate theologian himself he would ex-communicate the worst of the dissidenters and discipline the rest. This has not come to pass, and I am frankly a bit surprised as these people do much damage at the "Catholic" Universities they teach at corrupting the faith of the young adults that they teach to.

Dad29 said...

Be sure to check in at

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Theo said...

I agree that we should encourage Church leadership (especially our Bishops) to address and correct Catholic theologians (especially those who have taken Holy Orders) who teach doctrine contrary to Holy Scripture and Holy Tradition; and who in doing so defy the Magesterium by which all in Christendom (whether they realize it or not) judge and test all doctrine and revelation.

Nevertheless, regarding our calling for ex-communion, I suggest we avoid this; but rather, pray for the epiphany that brings about repentance, renewal and full communion; and let any calls for excommunication come from our Bishops.

I suggest this because we have little knowledge of what is underway (both spiritually and organizationally) to correct each individual.

However, I do know this: We are wise to avoid calling for swift judgment when righteous mercy and grace might be under way.

"For a bruised reed He will not break; and a smoldering wick He will not quench."



St. Jimbob of the Apokalypse said...


Don't mistake my desire to see some ecclesiastic censure with judgment of someone's eternal repose. Excommunication is a disciplinary measure to warn a persistant sinner to amend their ways. When you have a catholic that continually and publicly defies catholic teaching, it's not only their own salvation that they endanger, but the salvation of those who follow the example of the dissenter.
It's imperitive that the Church address the errant believer and their opinions in terms of dissent's erosion of the true Faith. To sweep it under the rug or ignore it is a disservice not only to Christians, but to Christ, who's asked us to always proclaim the Truth, no matter how inconvenient.
Thanks for dropping by.