Assessing the Pope’s responsibility in the chastisement of coronavirus
March 31, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – You’ve surely heard by now that Pope Francis has scandalously claimed that the coronavirus is thanks to nature being angry with us for not protecting the environment. Plenty of other modernist prelates such as Fr. James Martin have spouted similar things in the last few weeks. But Cardinal Burke, Bishop Schneider and many saints and Pope’s of the past, not to mention Our Lord Himself, have said differently.
When I first heard that Pope Francis suggested the COVID-19 outbreak was the result of ‘nature’ throwing a fit because we had failed to take care of the environment, I couldn’t believe it was real. Surely, even though the Pope has been wrong on so many matters of faith like contraception, cohabitation, divorce and remarriage, and transgenderism, surely he couldn’t have gone against Scripture and Tradition on the coronavirus calamity that has struck the earth!
So, we made sure before we ran the story that we found with the video of him saying it. And for those of you who may not yet have seen it, below you can see exactly what he said and thus rebuff those who said it was ‘fake news’ that the Pope said this.
Pope Francis of course wasn’t the only one who claimed this.
Fr. James Martin, one of the most notorious promoters of heresy on the subject of homosexuality in the Church, castigated Cardinal Burke for recalling that in the wake of the onset of the virus all evil results from sin.
“So don't listen to anyone, even clergy, who tell you that the #coronavirus is a punishment for sins – either your sins, the sins of some group (usually a group they oppose) or the world's sins. Jesus rejects this approach…,” said Martin in a tweet. “Jesus rejects three times the idea of a monstrous God who punishes people with illness or disability. This is not the God of the New Testament. Instead, Jesus accompanies us in our infirmities, and for those in his time, heals them.”
This is utter nonsense and demonstrates or plays into a profound ignorance of Scripture and the Catholic faith.
Firstly, all evil – death included – entered the world through sin, as we know from the letter of St. Paul to the Romans. Cardinal Burke brought up this fact in a statement on the coronavirus. He said, “There is no question that great evils like pestilence are an effect of original sin and of our actual sins.” And that was the key quote about which Fr. Martin was complaining.
But what about the Scriptural account of Noah and the flood, which is all about God punishing the world for sin?
The Church has always taught, in line with the Holy Bible, that there are four sins which cry out to heaven for vengeance. As you can read in the Catechism of Saint Pius X: (1) Willful murder; (2) The sin of sodomy; (3) Oppression of the poor; (4) Defrauding laborers of their wages.
“These sins are said to cry to God for vengeance because the Holy Ghost says so, and because their iniquity is so great and so manifest that it provokes God to punish them with the severest chastisements,” says the catechism.
Related to that, we also have the account of Sodom and Gomorrah being destroyed as a consequence of their grievous sins, especially homosexual acts.
In case some like Fr. Martin would claim that this is all allegorical and untrue, Jesus Himself talks about the punishment of Sodom. In Matthew 11:25 we read our Lord saying, “And you Capharnaum, shall you be exalted up to heaven? You shall go down even unto hell. For if in Sodom had been done the miracles that have been done in you, perhaps it would have remained till this day.”
All throughout the Scriptures, the New Testament included, are what today we call ‘natural disasters’ that are related to God’s displeasure. At Christ’s death there was a horrific earthquake. As we read in Matthew 27:51, “And behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth shook and the rocks were split.”
Jesus Himself warns of Divine punishments. He tells his apostles, as recorded in Luke Chapter 10, to wipe off the dust from their sandals as a testimony to those cities which have rejected His teachings, warning, “I say to you, it shall be more tolerable at that day for Sodom than for that city.” Again, when Jesus heals the invalid man at the Bethesda pool, as recorded in John 5, he tells him, “Behold you are made well: sin no more, so that nothing worse happens to you.”
But let’s get back to what the Pope said about all this.
Here is how LifeSite’s Mexico correspondent Matthew Hoffman reported on the pope’s remarks:
The pope’s attribution of the coronavirus pandemic to environmental damage is in keeping with the strongly environmentalist “eco-theology” he has been promoting during his pontificate since the publication of his encyclical “Laudato si” in 2015, and particularly at the recent Synod of Bishops for the Pan-Amazon Region, which tended to displace spiritual concerns with environmental ones.
Last November, the Pope said that he hoped to add the “‘ecological sin’ against our common home” to the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
Francis’ claim that nature is lashing out against man’s environmental sins has been echoed by Leonardo Boff, a dissenting “liberation” theologian who abandoned the Franciscan order and entered into a union with a woman after being censured by the Vatican for attacking Catholic doctrine. Boff is a strong supporter of Pope Francis and has known him since the 1970s.
In a recent article for a Brazilian magazine, Boff stated that the coronavirus pandemic is the revenge of “Gaia,” a personified planet earth who has become outraged over environmental offenses, and which he also calls the “Great Mother.”
“I believe that current diseases such as dengue, chikungunya, zika virus, SARS, ebola, measles, the current coronavirus, and the widespread degradation of human relations, marked by deep inequality/social injustice and a lack of minimal solidarity, are a reprisal for Gaia for the offenses we inflict on her without interruption,” he added.
“It is not without reason that the virus has erupted there where there is most pollution,” wrote Boff.
So it seems we’re back to pagan idolatry of Mother Earth, also known as Gaia or Pachamama.
It is very clear in Scripture that God hates idolatry. When the Israelites turned to idolatry as Moses was away on the mountain with God, God was ready to destroy them all but Moses pleaded for the people of Israel and appeased God’s wrath. You can read about that in Exodus 32.
It is worth noting that just before this virus broke out, the Pope allowed for idolatry in the Vatican Gardens. The Pachamama idolatry that took place there also included prostration before a statue of the Pachamama. The statue was later processed into St. Peter’s Basilica where the Pope and several Cardinals said prayers before it. This act was condemned by many Cardinals, bishops, priests, and laity all over the world.
In a letter written to Pope Francis that included the signature of Archbishop Carlo Vigano, the facts were laid out this way:
On October 4, Pope Francis attended an act of idolatrous worship of the pagan goddess Pachamama. (1)
He allowed this worship to take place in the Vatican Gardens, thus desecrating the vicinity of the graves of the martyrs and of the church of the Apostle Peter.
He participated in this act of idolatrous worship by blessing a wooden image of Pachamama. (2)
On October 7, the idol of Pachamama was placed in front of the main altar at St. Peter’s and then carried in procession to the Synod Hall. Pope Francis said prayers in a ceremony involving this image and then joined in this procession. (3)
When wooden images of this pagan deity were removed from the church of Santa Maria in Traspontina, where they had been sacrilegiously placed, and thrown into the Tiber by Catholics outraged by this profanation of the church, Pope Francis, on October 25, apologized for their removal and another wooden image of Pachamama was returned to the church. (4) Thus, a new profanation was initiated.
On October 27, in the closing Mass for the synod, he accepted a bowl used in the idolatrous worship of Pachamama and placed it on the altar. (5)
Cardinal Burke drew attention to this idolatry in his comments about the Coronavirus.
He said, “[A] person of faith cannot consider the present calamity in which we find ourselves without considering also how distant our popular culture is from God. It is not only indifferent to His presence in our midst but openly rebellious toward Him and the good order with which He has created us and sustains us in being.”
He added, “We witness, too, even within the Church, a paganism which worships nature and the earth,” he continued. “There are those within the Church who refer to the earth as our mother, as if we came from the earth, and the earth is our salvation. But we come from the hand of God, Creator of Heaven and Earth.”
There is another very interesting observation between God’s punishment and recent controversies of Pope Francis. The Pope’s scandalous allowance for Holy Communion for divorced and remarried Catholics which, before the Pachamama idolatry, was the most common concern about the Francis papacy.
A 2015 interview of Bishop Athanasius Schneider by Church Militant’s Michael Voris has a special relevance today. In speaking of God’s punishment for sins, His Excellency mentions several examples in Scriptural history. He quoted St. Paul’s to the Corinthians, Chapter 11:
27 Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be answerable for the body and blood of the Lord... 29 For all who eat and drink without discerning the body, eat and drink judgment against themselves. 30 For this reason many of you are weak and ill, and some have died.
“For this reason many of you are weak and ill, and some have died.”
Doesn’t that sound like a perfect picture of what we are experiencing in this Coronavirus pandemic? “Many of you are weak and ill, and some have died.”
But is it really sane to imagine that even some part of this plague is the result of Pope Francis’ betrayal of Our Lord?
Well there’s actually historical precedent for exactly such a thing. In the Old Testament we read the story of the God-selected leader of His chosen people - King David - betraying God and the chastisement that fell on all the people because of it.
The account is related in 2 Samuel 24, where we learn that David pridefully enumerated all the Israelites but later felt compunction and confessed his sin by asking the Lord to remove it. The Lord made it known to David through the prophet Gad that David was to choose which punishment would befall the people because of his sin.
12 “Go and tell David, ‘This is what the Lord says: I am giving you three options. Choose one of them for me to carry out against you.’” 13 So Gad went to David and said to him, “Shall there come on you three[a] years of famine in your land? Or three months of fleeing from your enemies while they pursue you? Or three days of plague in your land? Now then, think it over and decide how I should answer the one who sent me.” 14 David said to Gad, “I am in deep distress. Let us fall into the hands of the Lord, for his mercy is great; but do not let me fall into human hands.” 15 So the Lord sent a plague on Israel from that morning until the end of the time designated, and seventy thousand of the people from Dan to Beersheba died. 16 When the angel stretched out his hand to destroy Jerusalem, the Lord relented concerning the disaster and said to the angel who was afflicting the people, “Enough! Withdraw your hand.”
In truth, we are all guilty of idolatry in some ways – how many times have we given in to lust, to gluttony, to pride, to anger, to laziness, to jealousy, to greed?
And it is our very sins and especially those of abortion, lust, and sodomy which have drawn down upon us the chastisement of God. And beyond Coronavirus there is a more severe punishment that has been afflicting the world for many decades now but more acutely in recent days.
Christians are taught that as we push God away, His protection is also pushed away - by us. For true Christian believers these are realities of life, not speculative theories or myths. And in our busy, very materialistic life in which we don’t seem to need God at all, we completely lose the sense of this reality – until tragedy strikes.
Christians are also taught that the devil is what Scripture calls “the prince of this world.” The devil intends evil or harm to come to us. God permits much evil in the world, but the faith teaches that He does so because He can bring great good from even the worst and seemingly hopeless situations.
I find it most easily explained by taking a hard look at reality - eternal reality. Most seem not to live a life that accepts the reality that God would have a role, or shall we say a deliberately intended message for us, in disasters such as the Coronavirus. In reality, we are here on earth for a very short time. A blip if you will, in terms of the span of our real life after death which goes on for eternity. Those who do not believe are prone to end up in the depths of despair when calamity strikes. Seen in the spiritual light, life is primarily about deciding which path to take for eternity.
And from that perspective there can be a special hope regarding the plight of the victims of calamities such as the Coronavirus. Countless people when faced with such calamity turn their hearts to God, many for the first time, some after a long time of rejecting God. And while their prayers and pleadings for safety may not be realized in this world, they suddenly become more open to a deep change of heart that they know will set them in a direction of being happy, safe and calm and with a loving Father forever in the next world. One of the unique, consoling truths in Christian teaching on suffering is that Christ suffers with us all of our pains and calamities. He is there for us at all times, but closest when we are suffering.
And so in the end it really us up to us – up to God’s people to bring the blessing of God on the earth. As we read in 2 Chronicles 7:14, “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”
So, let’s take up this challenge. Right now we are in Passion week, the week where we prepare for Holy Week, the most sacred time of year. We must make it sacred even if we are denied the sacraments. Let us kneel and pray our rosaries and follow along with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass broadcast from the holiest priests we know. Let’s also make our spiritual Holy Communions and find priests who will offer clandestine Masses. Let’s also receive Our Lord on behalf of the countless Catholics unable to receive Him this year. Beg the Lord to return to us and to remember us in His GREAT mercy. Stay under the mantle of Mary too, for she will protect us and give us shelter, leading us always to Her Son.
And, finally, let us together repent both for our sins and those of the whole world, offering to the Eternal Father the Most Sacred Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of His Dearly beloved Son Our Lord Jesus Christ in union with the Masses said throughout the world.
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