Tuesday, June 03, 2008

A Jesuit who has his Sun mixed up with his Moon

Spengler has an interesting entry on the First Things blog: "Italian Jesuit Attacks Magdi Allam". You will remember the issue (Sandro Magister at www.chiesa covered it in depth): Magdi Allam was the nominal Muslim whom the Pope received into the Catholic Church at the Easter Vigil at St Peter's this year by baptism, confirmation and first Eucharist.

Anyway, according to Spengler, an Italian Jesuit by the name of Fr. dall’Oglio has decided to have a go at the Pope for getting it all wrong. According to Fr. dall’Oglio, the Pope is unaware that the Second Vatican Council declared a "Copernican Revolution...in favor of Islam". In this "Copernican Revolution" the "The moon of urgent concern for freedom of conscience and religion" is supposed to go around "the sun of charitable discretion, of respect for Muslim feelings, and of the renunciation of proselytism."

Now, correct me if I'm wrong (I'm sure you will!), but I rather think the good Jesuit has his cosmology a little mucked up. I had always been under the impression that (to continue the analogy) the "urgent concern for freedom of conscience and religion" was Vatican II's "Sun" to the "moon" of "charitable discretion", respect for others and renunciation of morally unethical proselytism.

Now, friends, you know me. I am all gung-ho for friendly dialogue with our Muslim brothers and sisters (heck, I had a very enjoyable lunch with a group of them today in which they said their community suspected them of being crypto-Catholics just as much as our community suspects us of being crypto-Muslims!), but I do pride myself in knowing first order issues apart from second order issues. And freedom of conscience and religion is a first order issue without which there can be no respect for the other, no charity, and no ethical proselytism/evangelisation.

Maybe Fr. dall’Oglio needs to go on retreat with his brothers at the Vatican Observatory. They might not teach him anything about theology, but he might get his comsmology straight...

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