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Los Angeles auxiliary bishop Robert Barron chaired the revision of the U.S. Bishops’ teaching on the death penalty in Baltimore, Md., June 2019.Lisa Bourne / LifeSiteNews

October 31, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — Bishop Robert Barron, an auxiliary bishop for Los Angeles and founder of the popular “Word on Fire” ministry, experienced a tsunami of criticism after praising pro-LGBT Fr. James Martin in an endorsement for the Jesuit’s new book about prayer.  

“Delighted to share the final cover of ‘Learning to Pray: A Guide for Everyone,’ to be published in Feb by Harper One Books,” said Martin in a tweet which accompanies the galley proofs for the book’s cover. 

“Thanks to Bishop Barron, Cardinal B Cupich … and others for their support,” he added.

A close inspection of the back cover reveals Bishop Barron’s personal praise for the Jesuit, long known for his dedication to normalizing homosexuality and transgenderism within the Catholic Church.  

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Galley sheet back cover of Fr. James Martin’s new book, with Bishop Barron’s endorsement circled

“Fr. Martin is a winsome guide to all those who want to deepen their friendship with the Lord,” wrote Barron. 

Backlash

Social media erupted with sharp backlash from orthodox Catholics decrying Barron’s support for Martin.

“Now that Barron has publicly endorsed a book on prayer by Fr. James Martin, he has absolutely no credibility for orthodox Catholics,” declared LifeSite columnist Dr. Peter Kwasniewski, an outspoken Thomistic theologian, liturgical scholar, author, and Church commentator, in a Facebook posting. 

“This, friends, is a moment of God-given clarity,” continued Kwasniewski. “Barron, standing atop his media empire, brandishing a new Barronized Bible, has made the mistake of thinking he’s invincible.” 

“This step clinches that he is in the charmed circle of [James] Martin, [Blase] Cupich, [Wilton] Gregory, [Theodore] McCarrick, et alia.”

“I am angry. But, more than that, I am so very sad,” wrote Fr. Richard Heilman, popular author and speaker. “It is now more clear than ever that the appeasement and compromise of our bishops to the ruling class and the purveyors of moral disintegration has been revealed to be endemic. This, while prelates do not blink an eye in castigating any holy and heroic priest who receives so much as one complaint from the Left.”

“As seen with Wilton Gregory and others, this kind of appeasement and compromise (recall he warmly invited Fr. James Martin to speak in his diocese) opens the pathway to elevation, under this pontificate,” noted Heilman.

“Bishop Barron is not your friend. See the signs and run far away,” urged Catholic author and marriage activist Leila Miller.

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PETITION: Ask Pope Francis to clarify and rectify scandalous remarks on homosexual civil unions
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Remarks attributed to Pope Francis (and, not denied by the Vatican) in support of homosexual civil unions have caused grave scandal to the faithful.

Please SIGN this urgent petition which asks Pope Francis to clarify and rectify these heterodox and scandalous remarks on homosexual civil unions, and which will be delivered both to the Vatican and to the Papal Nuncio of the United States (the Pope's official representative in the U.S.).

As the last guarantor of the Faith, the Pope should clarify and rectify these remarks, which go against the perennial teaching of the Church, even including the teaching of his living predecessor, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI.

"What we have to create is a law of civil coexistence [meaning civil union law, for homosexuals]...," Pope Francis is reported to have remarked, in what is arguably his clearest statement of public support for a practice morally prohibited by official Catholic Church teaching.

In fact, the Church has been crystal clear in Her opposition to homosexual unions.

Just in 2003, Pope Saint John Paul II approved a document from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, titled 'Considerations Regarding Proposals to Give Legal Recognition to Unions between Homosexual Persons' and written by Cardinal Ratzinger (now, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI), which concludes with the following:

"The Church teaches that respect for homosexual persons cannot lead in any way to approval of homosexual behaviour or to legal recognition of homosexual unions. The common good requires that laws recognize, promote and protect marriage as the basis of the family, the primary unit of society. Legal recognition of homosexual unions or placing them on the same level as marriage would mean not only the approval of deviant behaviour, with the consequence of making it a model in present-day society, but would also obscure basic values which belong to the common inheritance of humanity. The Church cannot fail to defend these values, for the good of men and women and for the good of society itself."

It could not be more clear: the Church is calling people to repentance, not to be left to indulge in grave sin.

Since becoming public, several senior prelates as well as other notable Catholic figures have voiced their opposition to these remarks attributed to the Pontiff.

Cardinal Raymond Burke stated: "It is a source of deepest sadness and pressing pastoral concern that the private opinions reported with so much emphasis by the press and attributed to Pope Francis do not correspond to the constant teaching of the Church, as it is expressed in Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition."

Cardinal Gerhard Müller commented: "Where there is tension between the plain and obvious Word of God and the infallible interpretation on the one hand, and private expressions of opinion even by the highest church authorities on the other, the principle always applies: in dubio pro DEO [When in doubt, be in favor of God]."

And, Catholic theologian and apologist Scott Hahn, without directly quoting Pope Francis, shared on Facebook the 'Letter to the Bishops of the Catholic Church on the Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons,' published by the CDF in 1986, with the statement: "Holy Father, respectfully and humbly, I beg to differ... if that is indeed what you said. In any case, please clarify and rectify your statement, especially in view of the official teaching of our Lord through the magisterium of His Church."

But, the silence from the Vatican has been deafening, with no clarification forthcoming.

We must, therefore, ask the Pope for clarification in this serious matter.

Please SIGN and SHARE this petition which asks Pope Francis to clarify and rectify remarks attributed to him in support of homosexual civil unions.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

'Cdl. Burke: Pope’s homosexual civil union remarks ‘contrary’ to Scripture, Tradition' - https://www.lifesitenews.com/opinion/cardinal-burke-on-popes-homosexual-civil-union-remarks-contrary-to-the-teaching-of-sacred-scripture-and-sacred-tradition

'Cardinal says Catholics ‘can and should’ disagree with Pope’s ‘opinion’ on gay civil unions' - https://www.lifesitenews.com/blogs/cdl.mueller-popes-words-on-gay-civil-unions-purely-private-expression-of-opinion-which-every-catholic-can-and-should-freely-contradict

'Archbishop Vigano, Bishops Tobin and Strickland respond to Pope’s approval of homosexual civil unions' - https://www.lifesitenews.com/blogs/archbishop-vigano-and-bishops-tobin-strickland-respond-to-popes-approval-of-homosexual-civil-unions

'Pope’s comments on gay civil unions cause shockwaves around the world' - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/deepest-sadness-cardinal-burke-condemns-pope-franciss-remarks-supporting-civil-unions

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“I will warn people away from him regularly now. Enough is enough,” declared Miller. “The faithful have had enough, and I am done being silent. Any complicity with James Martin is complicity with darkness. 

“And to encourage people to READ any of Martin’s books, to put people on Martin’s trail, as if he were trustworthy, prayerful, ‘winsome’ — well, it’s a bridge too far (no pun intended),” she continued.  “Asking slithery, disingenuous, LGBTQ-activist Martin to teach you how to pray is like asking the devil to teach you how to pray.”

“James Martin holds heretical views that are leading young men to burn,” tweeted Austin Ruse, pro-life activist, author, and founder of C-Fam. “No one, most of all a bishop should endorse his work on any topic.”

Perhaps the most poignant — and most important — reaction came from Joseph Sciambra, a former gay porn actor who returned to the Church, despite having suffered sexual abuse from predatory homosexual priests.  

My abuser: “You were born gay; God made you that way.” 

James Martin: “God made you this way.”

[Pope] Francis: “God made you gay.” 

In less than 40 years, the script used by predator priests has moved through the hierarchy — all the way up to the Pope.

Earlier this month, LifeSiteNews reported on Bishop Barron’s murky, equivocating commentary on what he described as the “intense dilemma” Catholics face with regard to their vote.  The net result was to obscure the clear pro-life choices Catholics and other people of faith face in the presidential election which is already upon us.

“A Catholic in good conscience could never say that she will vote for Joe Biden because the Democrat is pro-choice, and by the same token, a Catholic in good conscience could never say that he will vote for Donald Trump because the Republican is for capital punishment,” asserted Barron.

“In the political calculus of a Catholic, opposition to abortion, euthanasia, and capital punishment should take pride of place,” said Barron, finally allowing that “the number of those threatened by abortion and euthanasia is far greater than the number of those under threat of capital punishment.”

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