What People Are Commenting
Inculturation, Interfaith Dialogue & Evolution
Inculturation with Pagans
I have seen many of the pictures on your website of John Paul II wearing traditional vestments of many cultures [here and here]. In your description you say this is an example of inculturation. Can you explain why this is a bad thing?
According to progressivist verbiage, inculturation is the action of the Conciliar Church to enter into the local cultures and assume their “values” by adapting itself to them. In-culturation was a word coined to oppose a-culturation, which, according to the same progressivist jargon, was the missionary action of the Catholic Church until the Council, which supposedly completely ignored the local cultures. Thus, the pejorative use of the prefix a, which in Greek means the total ablation of something, such as a-cephalous without a head, an-archia, without order, a-bulia, without desire, etc. So, a-culturation means without culture, or better, doing away with the local cultures.
However, the meanings of these words are strongly biased, because the Catholic Church before the Council always favored a moderated adaptation to the praiseworthy customs of the peoples to whom she directed her message. At the same time, she never cease to combat the pagan errors and bad customs of those peoples.
From the top, a traditional Virgin and Child with Japanese features, Our Lady of Africa, Our Lady of Kazan as a Russian
A magnificent example of this healthy adaptation is found in the different images of Our Lady and Our Lord venerated by the different peoples. For the Japanese, Our Lady and Our Lord appear Japanese; for the Russians they look Russian; for the Africans they look African, just as for the Spaniards they look Spanish and for the Germans they appear German. This is all the more understandable because those peoples worship Our Lord as Father and venerate Our Lady as Mother. Nothing seems more comprehensible than for a Hungarian person to imagine Our Lady in a way similar to his own mother, with her Hungarian characteristics. So, an effort of adaptation was always present in the missionary work of the Catholic Church.
Progressivism, however, wants to do away with the rejection the Catholic Church made of the errors and bad customs of the peoples she addressed. It pretends that those errors should also be assimilated. So, in theory and in practice inculturation for the Conciliar Church is the immersion of the missionary into the whole culture of those pagan peoples. In India, the missionary assumes the local dress, but he also assimilates Hinduism into the liturgy of the Mass and into his spirituality. In Africa, he approves, at least tacitly, the barbarian and immoral tribal customs, their fetishist practices and their animism, i.e., their demonic cult to the ancestors; in Mexico he takes part in the Aztec and Zapotec rituals and devil worship, and so on.
One sees, therefore, that there are two opposing concepts of missions. The Catholic concept presupposes that God is a Transcendent Being, Creator of Heaven and Earth, that Our Lord is God and He gave us a holy and pure Catholic Faith to believe and follow in order to save our souls. Therefore, this concept of mission wants to bring all the peoples to profess the one holy Catholic Faith.
The progressivist concept considers that God is immanent in everything, and therefore everything expresses him in some way. Men are immersed in an evolutionary process and, even though they - in their various faiths - are in different phases of evolution, they can coexist and help one another to advance to the next step of the evolution process. Hence, the missionary must not reject the pagan worship he encounters or he would be destroying some “seeds of the Word” present in those peoples.
In TIA we profess the Catholic Faith and we combat the progressivist inculturation. This is why we criticize the Popes and Prelates who adopt and promote it.
We hope this will resolve your doubts.
TIA correspondence desk
Interfaith Dialogue with Muslims
Ave María Purísima!
I live in the island of Mindanao, where Mohammedanism is deeply rooted. Mohammedanism was introduced to pre-Hispanic Philippines by Arabian missionaries from Malaya. How can I defend our Catholic Faith in a place like Mindanao where there is a strong Mohammedan presence?
Instead of preaching and defending the Faith, our Bishops here are attacking it by dialoguing with Mohammedan ulamas and imams and by organizing inter-faith conferences and by celebrating an inter-faith "Mindanao Week of Peace" every last week of November. Our nominally Catholic Bishops believe in a peace in Mindanao without Christ.
Offering my consideration and esteem, I remain,
It seems to us that the best way to start is to respectfully resist your Bishops. You may show them that their actions are opposed to the perennial teaching of the Church as taught, for example, in the Summa against the Gentiles, which was written by St. Thomas Aquinas to help missionaries convert the Muslims. You may also show historic examples of Saints who did the opposite of what they are doing. You can read about the attitude St. Francis of Assisi took here.
If you do not have the material means to publish your Catholic resistance in newspapers, you can open a website dedicated to this purpose. If you choose to do the latter, you can count on our support.
TIA correspondence desk
Are you guys Catholics or what? I am confused.
Where exactly can I get the true teaching of the Roman Catholic Church? In a state of confusion it's hard to practice clearly my religion.
Yes, we are proud to be Catholics.
You may read the Catechism of the Council of Trent. It is the best anti-Protestant doctrine ever! Wonderful clear teaching! We wish you a good reading.
TIA correspondence desk
In “Changing the mentality of Catholics” you write: “In his talk [at the Easter Vigil Papal Mass], he stressed that evolution is not a random thing, but part of God's design.”
But this is what the Pope actually said:
As a result, the Holy Father explained that the creation account of Scripture and St. John's Gospel affirm "that in the beginning is reason," and that mankind was not the product of random evolution "in the expanding universe, at a late stage, in some tiny corner of the cosmos."
"If man were merely a random product of evolution in some place on the margins of the universe, then his life would make no sense or might even be a chance of nature," he said. "But no, Reason is there at the beginning: creative, divine Reason."
As I understand it, this text does not say that “evolution is not a random thing” but that mankind is not the product of random evolution. Indeed the Pope believes in evolution, we all know that, but in this talk he is talking about man and not evolution as such.
Perhaps some editing of your text would be appropriate for the sake of clarity and ... truth.
Thank you for your objection. Mr. Lyle Arnold, who wrote that article, also wrote a second article on the topic. Please read it here. We believe he further analyzed that passage by the Pope. Please let us know whether or not your doubt is resolved.
TIA correspondence desk
Posted July 1, 2011
The opinions expressed in this section - What People Are Commenting -
do not necessarily express those of TIA
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