Formerly the Thinking Catholic Strategic Center
Vic Biorseth, Thursday,
December 10, 2015
I am a devout Roman Catholic, but I am no scholarly theologian. So this may be more of a question than a statement on the proper Catholic application of Mercy. Proper application of Mercy is a subject that periodically and repeatedly troubles me.
In Malignant Mercy we addressed how an evil agenda can attempt to commandeer the virtue of Mercy for evil purposes, and make good people feel guilty or so filled with compassion that they might even cooperate in their own national destruction.
In Mercy War, we addressed how wayward Bishops and Priests can attempt to commandeer the virtue of Mercy for their own evil purposes, and use it to make good Catholic people more accepting of obstinate unrepentant sin going on among them, rather than shunning the sinners. And to perhaps be more likely to be induced to actually participate in it themselves, and still think themselves good practicing Catholics. Failure to even admonish the sinner always leads to the degradation of the larger Culture. When such a thing is done in the name of Mercy, it is, to me, doubly sinful.
And now we have this Jubilee Year of Mercy, declared by His Holiness Pope Francis. And most if not all of what we are hearing and reading about it seems to lean in the direction of unlimited, boundless mercy. Can that be right? Forgiveness of everything?
If my understanding of Leviticus is right, it is mostly debt that is involved in the every-fifty-year Jubilee Years. Not all mortal sin. If someone falls on hard times and is forced to sell a house or a field within the city walls, just to keep his family afloat, he was supposed to have the option of redeeming it - buying it back - for one year from the date of the sale.
During that year, his close relatives had a moral obligation to help him redeem his property. But if it couldn't be redeemed within the year, then, there was another chance to redeem it when the next Jubilee Year came about.
And the buyer had a moral obligation to allow it to be redeemed in the Jubilee year, or, failing redemption, to simply release possession of it back to the original owner.
This Mercy involves the forgiveness of debt. If any "captives" are set free in the Jubilee, they would be those in debtor's prison, if my understanding is correct.
But what I'm hearing, from many quarters, seems to be more universal. And even unlimited. I've got a problem with that. In all the "forgiveness" and "mercy" verses I've read, they seem to be applied to my "brother" or my "neighbor"; and even when the word "enemy" is used, the implied enemy is still a neighbor or a brother, or one who is part of the larger culture. Not a mortal enemy of the whole faith, social structure and culture.
You "turn the other cheek" to your brother or your neighbor, or to the legitimate authority in your culture. You do not loan money at interest to your brother or your neighbor. Am I missing something here?
The Lord's Prayer asks the Lord to forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors, indicating that if we do not forgive, we should not be forgiven. But aren't there limits to what and who may be forgiven?
I know, St. Maria Goretti forgave her own murderer. But again, her murderer was in the category of a brother or a neighbor; a member of the larger culture, and not a declared mortal enemy of the faith, the social order and the culture itself.
Perhaps my problem with Mercy involves by repeated inability to give it, to certain American traitors who betrayed us during the Vietnam War. Walter Cronkite, R.I.P., Jane Fonda and John Kerry come immediately to mind. To this day, I cannot completely forgive them, though I have tried, many many times.
Different confessors have treated it inconsistently, even with wildly different interpretations. None held it to be mortally sinful, but something I needed to resolve, through prayer. It may be this inconsistency that makes the virtue of Mercy periodically trouble my soul, again and again.
I believe I could shake hands with, or perhaps even break bread with a North Vietnamese Regular, or a Viet Cong conscript; and, with more difficulty, with a Viet Cong Terrorist. But with the American traitors?
I try to pray for them, and I choke on the words. I pray silently, and I choke on the thought. God help me, I simply cannot forgive them. They were, in my estimation, worse than any murderous rapacious horde outside the city walls. For they betrayed us all from within the walls, while pretending to be with us, in the manner of Judas Iscariot. In the interest of advancing the global agenda of atheistic Communism over their own nation, and all of Western Civilization.
And today we are being betrayed again, by many, from within the walls. And many more have been purposely malformed in faith, mal-educated against America, and led to oppose all that is good. By traitors. Some of them, the same old traitors.
Am I all alone in this trouble with universal Mercy?
Sarcastic Acronym Hover-Link Footnotes: For the convenience of those readers using devices that lack a mouse, these footnotes are provided for all webpages, in case any webpage contains any hover-links. (If you don't have a mouse, you can't "hover" it over a link without clicking just to see the simple acronym interpretation. Click a footnote link to see the gory details.)SLIMC1 Secularist Liberal Intellectual Media Complex
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The Purpose of this grouping of links is to highlight miss-placed and miss-applied Christian Mercy, which inevitably becomes Super-Toleration of Evil, and Progressive Compromise with Evil, until Evil Rules.
The Miss-Placed Mercy Pages.
Describing the process by which formerly Christian American Culture degenerated into the corrupt, decadent and perverted mess we see today, in art, entertainment, literature, science, journalism, politics and general social behavior. Evil now dominates. Mercy is best applied to those best disposed to receive it. Note well that Biblical Mercy was not applied to the ancient Canaanites.
Does the Year Of Mercy mean the end of Moral and Spiritual Discernment? Fr. Larry Richards says the one thing you are absolutely forbidden to ever apply to anyone else is Judgment. Is that true? And is Mercy absolutely Limitless?
On The Evil One's Mal-Formed Compassion and Malignant Mercy. In malignant mercy we see that evil and untruth can infiltrate and commandeer even the virtues.
On the developing Catholic theological "Mercy War". Has Blessed Cardinal Newman's "Development of Christian Doctrine" been weaponized in the new Mercy War?
Is our Mercy to be unlimited? Should Mercy be applied even to Satan himself? Mercy for your brother, your neighbor, your political enemy; the common criminal. But what about Mercy for the murderous, rapacious horde outside the city walls?
On the Year of Mercy, Obstinate Unrepentant Sinners, and Pure Evil. In this Year of Mercy, are we to be merciful even to the evil barbarian hoard laying siege outside the city walls?
"We belong to the Church militant; and She is militant because on earth the powers of darkness are ever restless to encompass Her destruction. Not only in the far-off centuries of the early Church, but down through the ages and in this our day, the enemies of God and Christian civilization make bold to attack the Creator’s supreme dominion and sacrosanct human rights.”--Pope Pius XII
"It is not lawful to take the things of others to give to the poor. It is a sin worthy of punishment, not an act deserving a reward, to give away what belongs to others."--St. Francis of Assisi
Truth is incontrovertible. Malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end, there it is.—Winston Churchill
The smallest minority on earth is the individual. Those who deny individual rights cannot claim to be defenders of minorities.—Ayn Rand
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