25In our 9 October report about recent remarks made by papal confidant Fr. Antonio Spadaro as regards the moral law, we included a post-publication upgrade about a new dialog between Pope Francis and Eugenio Scalfari.
Scalfari, who has come to be a favourite interviewer of Pope Francis, is the atheist creator of the Italian paper La Repubblica, known for his unconventional method of reconstructing interviews from memory, instead of using direct quotations. (Although Scalfari’s recounting of this pope’s more controversial words have thus often been dismissed by members of the Catholic media as unreliable, the pope’s insistence in continuing to search out Scalfari for frank interviews and on-the-record talks should put to rest any claim that he was misrepresented.)
In the most recent instance, while reviewing Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia’s new book, Scalfari quotes the pope as saying that among the bishops of the Catholic Church there’s a lot of relativism. Scalfari then quotations Francis as saying:
“We believers and of course above all we priests and we bishops believe in the Absolute, but each in their own way because each one has his own head and thought. So our absolute truth, shared by us all, is different from person to person. We do not avoid discussions in the case where our different thoughts confront each other. So there is a kind of relativism among us as well.”
Scalfari then adds his own Ideas about the pope’s and Archbishop Paglia’s own distinct idea that hell is Vacant:
“Pope Francis, preceded in this [view] by John XXIII and Paul VI, but, with a more revolutionary force with respect to ecclesial theology, has abolished the places where, after death, souls must go: Hell, Purgatory, Paradise. Two thousand years of theology have been based on this kind of afterlife, which even the Gospels confirm. However, it is with some attention to the theme of Grace that is in part due to the letters of Saint Paul (to the Corinthians and the Romans) and partly even more so to Augustine of Hippo. All souls are endowed with Grace, and so they are born perfectly innocent and they remain so unless they take the path of evil. If they are aware of it and do not repent even at the moment of death, they are condemned. Pope Francis, I repeat, has abolished the places of eternal dwelling in the afterlife of souls. The thesis held by him is that the souls dominated by evil and not repentant cease to exist while those who are redeemed from evil will be assumed into beatitude, contemplating God. This is the thesis of Francis and also of Paglia.”
Since Vatican expert Sandro Magister has reported before, Scalfari formerly quoted Pope Francis as saying: “In a millennium or so our human species will be extinguished and souls will merge with God.”
And in 2015, Pope Francis was again quoted by Scalfari: “What happens to that lost soul? And how? The response of Francis is distinct and clear: there is no punishment, but the annihilation of that soul.”
These quite heretical statements that are attributed to Pope Francis himself and which he has not denied are now also credited to the new head of the Pontifical Academy for Life and Grand Chancellor of the re-organized John Paul II Institute on Marriage and Family Sciences. His new novel, therefore, should be carefully researched and examined.
In circumstance under the premise that there is no eternal punishment for sin anymore this fresh Bergoglian era today makes a lot more sense. If Hell is not to be worried, what impediment is there to keep us from going in the direction of ethical relativism and doctrinal laxity?
It consequently becomes more desperate for faithful Catholics who are determined to remain loyal to the standard teaching of the Catholic Church to keep, within their own associations and books, to resist such violations of God’s truth that are already generating grave effects on the moral behavior of Catholics with regard to contraception, abortion, and adultery. Professor Josef Seifert has laid his finger into the wound of Pope Francis’ teaching, namely: that there appears to be no intrinsically evil act some more.