Recent Errors on Articles Critiquing Pope Francis’ New Encyclical

Again, Dr. Taylor Marshall tries to much good and spread the faith, yet I wish he would use his great intellect to promote Vatican II and Francis rather than destroy it.

Review 1: Dr. Taylor Marshall “Pope Francis’ New Encyclical Fratelli tutti: 8 POINT REVIEW”

I am not even going to comment past the first few minutes. Dr. Taylor Marshall spends times questioning the fact that Fratelli Tutti is even a valid encyclical. The problem with this is it does not even matter what it is. It could be an encyclical or a exhortation. It does not matter. Those distinctions only matter when you are comparing the comparative weight of different statements when they disagree. Anything taught by Pope Francis in such a formal way makes it a teaching of a Pope regardless of the format it is magisterial and we need to respect it and follow it with religious submission of intellect. Dr. Taylor Marshall does not say that we can disregard it because it is not an encyclical, yet he gives the impression because he does not mention that it is magisterial so we should follow it. Note also that an encyclical does not have to be addressed to the faithful. The Pope is moral leader of the entire world so he can address everyone if he so choses.

Source Reason and Theology.

Review 2: John Henry Westen “Pope Francis’s latest encyclical: Abortion not on list of political concerns”

Again John Henry does much good in promoting Pro-Life issues yet he drops the ball on this one. Pope Francis may not include abortion on the list for paragraph #188. Yet the topic is mentioned with concern elsewhere.

Take #24 “We should also recognize that “even though the international community has adopted numerous agreements aimed at ending slavery in all its forms, and has launched various strategies to combat this phenomenon, millions of people today – children, women and men of all ages – are deprived of freedom and forced to live in conditions akin to slavery… Today, as in the past, slavery is rooted in a notion of the human person that allows him or her to be treated as an object… Whether by coercion, or deception, or by physical or psychological duress, human persons created in the image and likeness of God are deprived of their freedom, sold and reduced to being the property of others. They are treated as means to an end… [Criminal networks] are skilled in using modern means of communication as a way of luring young men and women in various parts of the world”. A perversion that exceeds all limits when it subjugates women and then forces them to abort.

Take #18 “A “throwaway” world. Some parts of our human family, it appears, can be readily sacrificed for the sake of others considered worthy of a carefree existence. Ultimately, “persons are no longer seen as a paramount value to be cared for and respected, especially when they are poor and disabled, ‘not yet useful’ – like the unborn, or ‘no longer needed’ – like the elderly. We have grown indifferent to all kinds of wastefulness, starting with the waste of food, which is deplorable in the extreme”

Now lets read #188 again. “These considerations help us recognize the urgent need to combat all that threatens or violates fundamental human rights. Politicians are called to “tend to the needs of individuals and peoples. To tend those in need takes strength and tenderness, effort and generosity in the midst of a functionalistic and privatized mindset that inexorably leads to a ‘throwaway culture’… It involves taking responsibility for the present with its situations of utter marginalization and anguish, and being capable of bestowing dignity upon it”. It will likewise inspire intense efforts to ensure that “everything be done to protect the status and dignity of the human person”. Politicians are doers, builders with ambitious goals, possessed of a broad, realistic and pragmatic gaze that looks beyond their own borders. Their biggest concern should not be about a drop in the polls, but about finding effective solutions to “the phenomenon of social and economic exclusion, with its baneful consequences: human trafficking, the marketing of human organs and tissues, the sexual exploitation of boys and girls, slave labour, including prostitution, the drug and weapons trade, terrorism and international organized crime. Such is the magnitude of these situations, and their toll in innocent lives, that we must avoid every temptation to fall into a declarationist nominalism that would assuage our consciences. We need to ensure that our institutions are truly effective in the struggle against all these scourges”. This includes taking intelligent advantage of the immense resources offered by technological development.”

Do you see how even though Francis did not include abortion in #188 it is linked into his previous statements on abortion. Speaks of slavery talks about abortion in #24. Tell politician to end slavery in #188. Speaks of throw away culture and the unborn in #18. Tells politicians to end throw away culture in #188

As a result, Westen should not critique Francis on not including abortion in #188.

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