" But religious toleration does not dispense a government from the obligation to profess the one true Faith, and to recognize Christ as the one true God and the Roman Catholic Church as His one true Church."
From ...... CATHOLIC RESTORATION
Vol. v, No.1 First Quarter, 1995
THE CULT OF LIBERTY
[picture of Archbishop Ireland]
Archbishop Ireland's disgraceful compromise of Catholic doctrine had won the day in the Vatican basilica.
It is precisely this doctrine of religious liberty which throws the wrench into Vatican II. To be sure this wicked assembly had produced other heretical doctrines, even more pro- found and far-reaching than this one. Religious Liberty has the distinction, however, of being specifically condemned by Pope Pius IX.
As a result the Catholic conscience is perplexed:
do I listen to the apostolic authority of Pope Pius IX, who tells me that religious liberty is an insanity, a monstrous error, an error most fatal to the Catholic Church and the salvation of souls ?
Or do I listen to the "apostolic authority" of Vatican II, which tells me that religious liberty is a right which every human person possesses in virtue of his human dignity, a right "which is based on the very dignity of the human person as known through the revealed word of God and by reason itself ? "
[Dignitatis Humanae, no. 2. It says further on, "This doctrine of freedom is rooted in divine revelation, and for this reason Christians are bound to respect it all the more conscientiously."]
Upon this dilemma, this contradiction, is based the whole problem of Vatican II.
Religious Liberty vs. Religious Toleration
It is here necessary to distinguish between religious liberty and religious toleration. Religious liberty is that doctrine which asserts that each man has the right to profess and practice that religion which to him seems fit, according to the dictates of his conscience. Religious toleration is that doctrine which asserts that a civil society may morally tolerate within its walls, when a sufficient reason warrants it, the evil that some of its citizens profess and practice false [i.e., non-catholic] religions.
A sufficient reason for the toleration of so great an evil would be the avoidance of a greater evil, of which an example would be civil war. The very term toleration implies evil, and we are therefore not speaking about a right to profess the false religion, since all right is founded in God. It is inconceivable that God would grant someone the right to be wrong: the right, for example, to say that His Immaculate Mother is a harlot, or that Christ is an adulterer.
The Church has always recognized the prudence of toleration in certain circumstances, and the situation of the United States is certainly one of those circumstances. Pope Leo XIII teaches:
Although the Church pronounces the judgment that different worships cannot stand on the same footing of equality with the true religion, yet she does not therefore condemn those rulers who, in view of procuring a great good or of avoiding evil, tolerate in practice the coexistence of different worships.
Spread out over a vast territory and encompassing myriad religions, the government of the United States may prudently tolerate many religions.
But religious toleration does not dispense a government from the obligation to profess the one true Faith, and to recognize Christ as the one true God and the Roman Catholic Church as His one true Church.
In this lies the key error of the liberty-cultists: they extol not the prudence of religious toleration in order to avoid a civil war, but rather they extol the very indifference of the government to religion altogether, as if this indifference were one of the great virtues of the Constitution.
[ continue ]
Editor - Father Donald Sanborn
2899 East Big Beaver Road, Suite 308
Troy, MI 48083-2400