NETHERLANDS, October 22, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) — In two searing blog posts published on September 28 and October 21, Bishop Robert Mutsaerts of the Netherlands voiced his concerns over the Amazon Synod taking place in Rome, accusing it of pushing a “hidden agenda.”
In his column “Paarse pepers” (“Purple Peppers”) Vitamine XP — a Dutch-speaking blog run by several Catholic priests, including Mutsaerts — the bishop wrote that the Amazon Synod is “the most politically correct meeting of all time.”
According to Bishop Mutsaerts, auxiliary bishop of ’s Hertogenbosch (Bois-le-Duc), the Church is busy with something other than its “core” mission, which is to lead people to Christ and to obtain salvation and forgiveness for sins.
His pithy remarks are all quote-worthy. Here are LifeSite’s translations of his two recent blog posts on the Amazon Synod.
Pandora’s box (October 21, 2019)
If you follow the daily press conferences of the Amazon Synod, you will hear the same tune being played every time: new paths, listening to the indigenous people, climate change, and Mother Earth. It looks as if no one actually wants to even mention the fundamental problems. This synod is very similar in that respect to the Youth Synod (October 2018).
Is there a shortage of priests in the Amazon? Yes, there is. But the same is true in many areas (Africa, China, the Middle East). But that is not the real issue. Meanwhile, these mantras are being repeated daily, while Catholic vocabulary is almost nonexistent. The bishops and cardinals are discussing the environment, the rise of the sea level; they are saying that above all, we should listen. They speak like politicians, using the same slogans, the same cheap rhetoric. It’s strange that in a synod these kinds of topics should be the subject of discussion. It is not the specialty of the Church, it is not our core business and it is not our perspective. We want to be relevant, apparently, at the expense of our own identity. That is nowhere to be deduced from the lexicon, the jargon, and the vocabulary being used. Now and then, it even feels as though you are watching TV Kantine [a television comedy series mocking well known Dutch people]. Whereas our vocabulary once consisted of words such as “our Mother the Church,” “hellfire,” and “virtues,” now it’s all about Mother Earth, Amazonian fires, and ecology. These points of view are not at all different from those of political parties and pressure groups.
And there’s another thing: missionaries are suddenly being portrayed as imperialists who have imposed their values on the indigenous peoples. Does this mean that these missionaries never meant anything for the indigenous peoples? They risked their lives to proclaim the gospel. How many martyrs are there now? They went into the jungle to obey Jesus’s command to proclaim the gospel unto the ends of the world. The missionaries were all too aware that they had to meet the physical needs of the Amazonian people first. They fought poverty; they built hospitals; they built schools. This attitude led to people becoming curious about what they actually had to say. These missionaries knew that God does not speak through trees (some synod participants make different noises in this regard) and that sacrificing children is a horrible thing. They showed the indigenous people a way out of darkness and fear and gave them access to the sacraments. To suggest that missionaries were not concerned about the welfare of the people but were driven by imperialist motives and self-interest, is truly bizarre. Just as bizarre is the idea that we have now suddenly seen the light and realize that it is all about something else: Mother Earth, global warming, CO2.
All this has nothing to do with compassion for indigenous tribes. It is becoming increasingly clear that the Amazon Synod is being misused to push through a hidden agenda. Celibacy, it is suggested, would be incomprehensible to indigenous men, and that’s why we’re introducing the married priesthood. How strange, after all, that for more than a thousand years, people of all times, races and cultures have accepted celibacy, but the Amazonian people would be incapable of comprehending it? Are they just too stupid? Is that what is being suggested? What kind of strange discrimination is this? Of course, there is also a plea to open up the priesthood to women as well.
And all of this to give people more opportunities to participate in the Eucharist. Is that so? What about Japan, where for 250 years there was not a priest to be seen and Holy Mass could not be celebrated? After 250 years, the vitality of the Japanese Christians was amazing. The catechists had done an excellent job. No one had had the idea to admit married men or women to the priesthood. Indeed, it is not the Catholics from the Amazon who are asking for this, but Western cardinals and bishops. By the way, why do these pretend that the people in the Amazon all live in the jungle and worship trees? Eighty (80!) percent of the indigenous population live in big cities, just like you and me. And like you and me, they wear jeans and T-shirts, not grass skirts.
If your heart really goes out to the Amazon, you tell the truth — namely, that it is Jesus Christ who saves. That’s the reason why you proclaim the unadulterated gospel. The call to repentance, and the promise of forgiveness associated with it, is that not the summary of the whole Bible? But the word “sin” did not cross anyone’s lips, so forgiveness and mercy didn’t, either. Yes, they did talk about it once — sin against Mother Earth. The environment is considered more important. This fits in perfectly with the core concepts of the new theology: integrated ecology, diversity, synodality, building bridges, global warming, new paths, change, and all that kind of nonsense.
This synod is truly the most politically correct meeting of all time. It’s a relief that Greta Thunberg has not yet been chosen to be a cardinal. Is there anyone left who is actually worried about saving souls? But isn’t that why Christ died on the cross?
If sacraments, sin, justification, and hell are no longer relevant, why should you be having a synod at all? If the Church has apparently been wrong for 2,000 years — that is the impression that is being created — why would you still listen to the Church’s views on ecology or on anything at all? What does the Church intend to do about the rise in sea level and CO2 emissions? Ordaining women as priests doesn’t really help. It turns out once again that one has nothing to do with the other, but must and will be implemented at all costs. By the way, when the water level rose in Noah’s time, it didn’t work out so badly.
Everyone knows that global warming is not the real problem of the Amazon, but — if we can’t be talking about Jesus — it’s drugs and the drug gangs, the drug wars, and the innumerable drug victims. Why don’t we listen to drug victims and drug addicts? That’s a much bigger problem. In South America, an estimated six million children are victims of abortion. That too is a much bigger problem than global warming. Wouldn’t a synod about this problem be much more appropriate?
To conclude: At the press conference last Friday (October 18), Sister Daniela Adriana Cannavina stated that the arrival of female deacons is likely to be one of the results of the synod. Archbishop Rino Fisichella went on to say that accompanying the new evangelization pagan input should be expected, so that “indigenous people can express their faith in accordance with their customs, thus giving the Church an Amazonian face.” And just to put a tin lid on it, the introduction of a new rite, the Amazonian rite, was also announced — of which, it should be understood, pagan elements are a part. In short, Pandora’s box is wide open. This is clear from the words of Bishop Mario Antonio da Silva, who said that we — oh yes, don’t let’s forget — need priests, so (so?!?) we will look at the possibility of married priests, delicately adding that this synod should not be considered as a synod limited to the Amazon region, but has consequences worldwide.
The final words of da Silva summarized it nicely. He considers the synod “an opportunity to get in touch with life, forests, water, animals, minerals, but especially communities that are filled with wisdom” (quoted from the Vatican website). Even Luther and Calvin would be shocked by this nonsense. Because that’s what it is. And the pope is looking on…
Amazon synod (September 28, 2019)
If you read the working document of the so-called Amazon Synod, it really seems that the intention is for the synod to wind up in a new religion. A kind of eco-socialism, an amalgam of ecology; climate change; ecumenism; viri probati; consecration of women; and, as an afterthought, sometimes a mention of Jesus, but then not as the Son of God and Redeemer: Jesus the philosopher, revolutionary, and hippie. Jesus gets his little spot in the Pantheon, as one of many. The Synod of Bishops for the Pan-Amazonian Region will take place, remarkably enough, not in the Amazon, but in Rome. It is also remarkable that countless bishops and cardinals — all of the same ilk — from outside the Amazon region have been invited. And then there’s something else: you’ll find many secular goals in the document. Integral ecology is one of them.
The working document embraces pantheism (which the Church has always rejected) and recognizes pagan superstition as a source of revelation (alternative ways of salvation; this implicitly means that Christ’s work of salvation is not unique; He is just one of many). All in all, the document — approved by Francis — gets rid of the Church’s identity as she has always understood it. There is not a single word about Jesus’s work of salvation, about conversion, the sacrifice of the Mass or that which is sacred. Embracing trees is more highly appreciated.
The pope has recently said once again that he is prepared to engage in debate with everyone. Unless your name is Burke, or Müller. Burke and Brandmüller are still waiting for answers to some simple questions (the so-called “dubia”). The strange thing is that even the media will not tolerate any criticism of the pope. Burke, et al. are condemned by the press. This is extremely surprising when you know that the same media considered criticism of John Paul II and Benedict to be a matter of course. However, anyone who criticizes Pope Francis is dismissed as part of a conspiracy to get rid of the pope, even though such people have only asked a few questions. Why not just answer them, and get rid of them? In response to questions from journalists about Archbishop Viganò’s statement, the pope replied that they should find out for themselves. And he considers criticism from America to be an honor. He doesn’t fear schism, either, as he told journalists on the flight back from Africa to Rome. If that’s the outcome, so be it.
Well, I do fear a schism. It really is the worst thing that can happen to the Church. On his return flight from Mauritius, the pope added that criticism is beneficial. He went on to say: “It is not only Americans who criticize me, but there are also criticizers within the curia.” Why didn’t the pope just invite the four dubia cardinals to talk it over? He would have been more credible as a bridge-builder (pontifex), and he would have been able to avoid a lot of confusion. However, the pope chooses to dismiss them in the eyes of the press as rigid moralists and degenerate ideologues.
Finally, I would like to mention this. How often do I hear that it’s all a matter of mercy? But I do not believe them. It is false mercy. We want to liberalize celibacy not in order to sanctify the priesthood, but to do away with a rule that requires holiness. They want to change the doctrine on homosexuality not because they want to be merciful toward the heavy burden of sin, but to say sin is no longer sin. They want to allow extra-marital sex not because they are positive about sexuality, but because they don’t want to recognize marriage (a man and a woman) as the only marriage covenant recognized by God. Be honest and stop pushing hidden agendas.