(LifeSiteNews) — A leading Catholic philosopher has warned that if cardinals do not address the “tremendous crisis” currently in the Catholic Church, then he predicts the “terrible danger of a complete collapse of the Catholic Church in many countries.”
“I see a terrible danger of a complete collapse of the Catholic Church in many countries, and indeed of its total destruction in some areas of the world,” said Seifert, adding that he knew such an eventuality would not be possible “because the truth itself has told us that the gates of hell will not ever prevail against the Church.”
Dr. Joseph Siefert — the prominent philosophy professor and intimate friend of Pope John Paul II — made the comments recently when speaking to Vatican journalist Edward Pentin about a crisis within the Catholic Church that he described as permeating the highest levels of the hierarchy.
Following the publication of Pope Francis’ 2016 text Amoris Laetitia, Francis “started to throw doubts on, or even to deny, the essential contents of Holy Scripture and Church teaching,” said Seifert.
Siefert’s condemnation of Francis’ actions relates to the promotion of errors regarding the family and human life, which he said had found renewed motivation following Amoris Laetitia.
Paul VI had resisted “tremendous pressure” to follow the Anglicans’ example in allowing contraception, and “the Holy Spirit prevented this,” said Seifert, which led to Humanae Vitae. But with Francis’ Amoris Laetitia, Seifert argued that the work of Humanae Vitae is under attack.
“It became incomprehensible to me that none of the cardinals, besides the four dubia cardinals, spoke out clearly against such errors and of obscuring Catholic teaching,” stated Seifert.
Therefore, as in the Arian Crisis, when one bishop, Saint Athanasius, and many laymen, rushed to the defense of truth, it was necessary that even miseri laici [us miserable laity] stood up for the truth.
His comments came as an addendum to a recently released letter, written and sent privately to a cardinal over two years ago, but only publicly issued on April 30. In the letter, Seifert criticized the as-yet unnamed cardinal for describing criticisms of Pope Francis as “a great evil that should be eradicated.”
In that text, Seifert called on the cardinals to publicly respond to Pope Francis’ various actions such as the Abu Dhabi text and his repeated comments in favor of same-sex unions. “Must you cardinals not tremble before the moment when Christ will ask you how you could fulfill Jesus’ solemn missionary mandate if you did not protest against the Abu Dhabi Declaration, which says the diametrical opposite of Jesus’ words?” he wrote.
That letter was subsequently made public by Seifert, in the hope that more of the Church’s cardinals would take up his challenge to defend the faith.
Echoing the tone of his letter, Seifert referenced a “frightening silence of the majority of cardinals and bishops on this unique crisis from the top of the Church down during a whole decade,” a silence that did not make him optimistic for a good response from the prelates.
“I am not at all optimistic but truly hopeful that the cardinals and bishops will no longer watch passively the downfall of the Church which only divine intervention can prevent,” said the professor. “God wants to use all of us, but especially chooses cardinals and bishops, just as He chose St. Paul to spread the Church and St. Athanasius to save it from Arianism and destruction.”
He expressed the hope that God “will awaken the fire of love for truth and for the Church in the hearts of all cardinals and bishops, and will bestow the gift of holy courage on many of them, as he has done already on some cardinals and bishops.”