Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Are Witches Catholic?
Her problem all hangs around a broad interpretation of Lumen Gentium 8, popular in the 1970s and especially fed by a simplification of Rhanner's doctrine of the "anonymous Christian"
Speaking of the Church of Jesus Christ, Lumen Gentium 8 says, "this Church, constituted and organized as a society in this present, world, subsists in (subsistit in) the Catholic Church, governed by the Successor of Peter and by the Bishops in communion with him, although (licet) many elements of sanctification and truth can be found outside her structure; such elements, as gifts properly belonging to the Church of Christ, impel towards Catholic unity".
This lady would say that wiccan witches (they are not Satanists but into potions and "spells") do good, pray for peace, are "green", are into world peace, and therefore have elements, as gifts properly belonging to the Church of Christ. Since the 1970 the Church has been rowing back on these "elements of sanctification and truth".
For example the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in a Notification on the book "Church: Charism and Power" by Fr. Leonardo Boff said, " . . . the Council chose the word subsistit precisely in order to make it clear that there exists a single 'subsistence' of the true Church, while outside her visible structure only elementa ecclesiae exist, which — as elements of the Church — tend and lead toward the Catholic Church".
As Prefect of the Congregation Joseph Ratzinger issued, in 2000, Dominus Jesus, in which he drew a distinction between the Church that is the Catholic Church and Churches such as the Orthodox Church which have a undisputedly validly ordained epicopacy and Ecclessial Communities such as Anglicanism, which do not have validly ordained bishops or priest or even the Salvation Army which has no sacraments at all but do have the scriptures, though little of the Tradition to interpret them correctly.
Pre-Dominus Jesus ecumenism seemed to want to broaden the scope of what a Christian was, seeing elements of Christianity everywhere, in Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, even tribal religions or witchcraft, that seemed to be at the root of previous Assisi events. After Dominus Jesus elementa ecclesiae tend to be seen in more precise terms, that can be seen in terms of "the hermeneutic of continuity",
Posted by Fr Ray Blake