Showing posts with label apologetics-- Baptism of Desire/Blood. Show all posts
Showing posts with label apologetics-- Baptism of Desire/Blood. Show all posts

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Father Faber on the Salvation of Non-Catholics

by Fr. Frederick W. Faber

If the Precious Blood had been shed, and yet we had no priesthood, no Sacraments, no jurisdiction, no sacramentals, no mystical life of the visible unity of the Church– life, so it seems, would be almost intolerable. This is the condition of those outside the Church; and certainly as we grow older, as our experience widens, as our knowledge of ourselves deepens, as our acquaintance with mankind increases, the less hopeful do our ideas become regarding the salvation of those outside the Roman Church.

We make the most we can of the uncovenanted mercies of God, of the invisible soul of the Church, of the doctrine of invincible ignorance, of the easiness of making acts of contrition, and of the visible moral goodness among men; and yet what are these but straws in our own estimation, if our own chances of salvation had to lean their weight upon them? They wear out, or they break down.

They are fearfully counterweighted by other considerations. We have to draw on our imaginations in order to fill up the picture. They are but theories at best, theories unhelpful except to console those who are forward to be deceived for the sake of those they love–theories often very fatal by keeping our charity in check and interfering with that restlessness of converting love in season and out of season, and that impetuous agony of prayer, upon which God may have made the salvation of our friends depend. (The Precious Blood, page 77)

Monday, February 20, 2012

Baptism of Desire: Its Origin and Abandonment in the Thought of Saint Augustine

by Brian Kelly 

[editor: We at Catholic Vox thought that this is a very good article and wished to share it. We have edited it slightly to make it more readable for our readers. We changed no content and link to the original original link here , we hope it helps-- Bill Strom]

Perish the thought that a person predestined to eternal life could be allowed to end this life without the sacrament of the mediator. (Saint Augustine)

This article will focus on the question of explicit baptism of desire — as it was understood by most western doctors of the Church from the time of Saint Augustine (+430) until Saint Alphonsus Maria de Liguori (+1787), the last declared theological doctor who wrote in favor of its saving efficacy. The subject matter will deal specifically with the origin of the theological speculation, as given by Saint Augustine in one of his early doctrinal letters, and then move on to prove from authoritative testimony that the African doctor reversed his opinion in his later anti-Pelagian writing.


Go Ye, Preach the Gospel to Every Creature, and Baptize

Let us preface the following with an affirmation of the extreme importance of this issue in that the conversion of non-Christians to the Catholic Faith, in our day, is no longer considered a mission necessary for their salvation. The mandate of our Savior to “Go ye into the whole world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized, shall be saved: but he that believeth not shall be condemned” (Mark 16:15-16), has been supplanted by a new gospel of salvation by sincerity through invincible ignorance. It is my intention to restore at least an appreciation for the zeal of the holy missionaries that went forth to convert the nations to Christ and to baptize the pagans and infidels who accepted the good news that is the gospel. These missionaries, whose exemplar since the sixteenth century is Saint Francis Xavier, were not distracted by any speculation about a baptism of desire. Xavier baptized three million pagans with his own hand. Biographers write that there were so many catechumens waiting to be baptized that assistants had to help him to lift his arm to perform the rite. Saint Francis Xavier never wrote a word about baptism of desire. Rather, he wrote these words from the Far East hoping to reach students aspiring for degrees: “How I would like to go to the universities of Paris and the Sorbonne and address many men who are richer in learning than in zeal, to let them know the great number of souls who, because of their neglect, are deprived of grace and are apt to go to hell. There are millions of nonbelievers who would become Christian if there were missionaries.” Was this missioner, considered the greatest after Saint Paul, misinformed?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Why the Council of Trent Does Not Teach Baptism of Desire

Proponents for the so-called Baptism of Desire (BoD) adduce a certain passage from the Council of Trent as by far their single most cogent argument in its favor. Certainly, if the Council of Trent had in fact taught BoD, then the case must be considered closed (“Roma dixit; res clausa est.” Rome has spoken; the matter is closed.) With that in mind, and fully prepared to accept whatever Holy Mother Church has taught on this subject, I determined to read the entire teaching of Trent, in Latin, from beginning to end, rather than simply being content with the single passage that’s invariably taken in isolation and out of context from the entire body of teaching. Translations, moreover, have this tendency to interpret as they go along, and, to a point, that almost cannot be helped. I asked the Holy Spirit to guide me in understanding the Church’s teaching and started reading. I actually began inclined in favor of a BoD for catechumens, but the more I read the more I realized that Trent wasn’t teaching BoD at all but something else altogether. I do not intend herein a comprehensive treatment regarding the notion of BoD but merely to explain why it’s clear that Trent did not teach BoD.

Friday, December 31, 2010

Let's be Honest

 from :Tim Harrington

Let's be honest. BoDers don't have a thing to stand on.

EENSers Say You DO need:
Water Agrees with words of Jesus Christ
The Sacraments Agrees with the Council Trent
The Church Agrees with the infallible proclamations
The Faith Agrees with sacred scripture
B.O.D.--ers Say You DON'T need:
Water Disagrees with words of Jesus Christ
The Sacraments Disagrees with the Council Trent
The Church Disagrees with the infallible proclamations
The Faith Disagrees with sacred scripture
*(BOD = Baptism of Desire)


Use this example when you discuss it with a priest.
Say a unbaptized secularist comes to a priest and says "I want to be a Catholic!"

Is he a Catholic then and there?
BoDer will say: "No, not yet"---(if yes then he doesn't need baptism.)

So the priest is welcoming and gives him a Catechism and class to attend--which our catechumen does excellent at. When he finishes the classes is he a member of the Church then?
BoDer: "No, not yet"---(if yes then he doesn't need baptism)

you: "But he has the desire--when does his desire make him a member of the Church?"

So then the catechumen wakes-up one day and walks on his way to get baptized in the church.
On that day when he wakes up is he a member of the Church?
BoDer: "No, not yet"---( if yes then he doesn't need to be baptized)

Now our catechumen is crossing the street in front of the Church to be baptized in say 45 minutes.
Is he a member then?
BoDer: "No not yet"---( if yes then he doesn't need to be baptized)

Just as he is taking his final step to cross the street he is hit by a car and is killed! Is he then a member?
BoDer: "Yes!"
How?
BoDer: "Because he was going to die and God has no power to avoid such catastrophes, so He invented BoD so he wouldn't look powerless!"


PLEASE lets be honest BoD makes no sense.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

The Theory of Baptism of Blood - A Tradition of Men

THE THEORY OF BAPTISM OF BLOOD - A TRADITION OF MEN


A small number of the fathers – approximately 8 out of a total of hundreds – are quoted in favor of what is called “baptism of blood,” the idea that a catechumen (that is, one preparing to receive Catholic Baptism) who shed his blood for Christ could be saved without having received Baptism.



It is crucial to note at the beginning that none of the fathers considered anyone but a catechumen as a possible exception to receiving the Sacrament of Baptism; they would all condemn and reject as heretical and foreign to the teaching of Christ the modern error of “invincible ignorance” saving those who die as non-Catholics. So, out of the fathers, approximately 8 are quoted in favor of baptism of blood for catechumens. And, only 1 father out of hundreds, St. Augustine, can be quoted as clearly teaching baptism of desire since the proclamation of the Gospel-- the idea that a catechumen could be saved by his explicit desire for water baptism. This means that with the exception of St. Augustine, all of the few fathers who believed in baptism of blood actually rejected the concept of baptism of desire. Take St. Cyril of Jerusalem, for example:

St. Cyril of Jerusalem, 350 A.D.: “If any man does not receive baptism, he does not receive salvation. The only exception is the martyrs...”[Jurgens, The Faith of the Early Fathers, Vol. 1: 811.]

Here we see that St. Cyril of Jerusalem believed in baptism of blood, but rejected baptism of desire. St. Fulgence expressed the same.



St. Fulgence, 523: “From that time at which Our Savior said: “If anyone is not reborn of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of heaven,’ no one can, without the sacrament of baptism, except those who, in the Catholic Church, without Baptism pour out their blood for Christ…”[Jurgens, The Faith of the Early Fathers, Vol. 3: 2269.]


Not All of the Fathers Consistent with their own Affirmation

NOT ALL OF THE FATHERS REMAINED CONSISTENT WITH THEIR OWN AFFIRMATION



Despite the fact that there is a constant tradition from the beginning that no one at all is saved without water baptism, not all of the fathers always remained consistent with their own affirmation on this point. And that is where we come across the theories of “baptism of blood” and “baptism of desire.” But it must be understood that the fathers of the Church were mistaken and inconsistent with their own teaching and the apostolic Tradition on many points – since they were fallible men who made many errors.






Fr. William Jurgens: “… we must stress that a particular patristic text [a particular statement from a father] is in no instance to be regarded as a ‘proof’ of a particular doctrine. Dogmas are not ‘proved’ by patristic statements, but by the infallible teaching instruments of the Church. The value of the Fathers and writers is this: that in the aggregate [that is, in totality], they demonstrate what the Church believes and teaches; and again, in the aggregate [that is, in totality], they provide a witness to the content of Tradition, that Tradition which is itself a vehicle of revelation.”[Jurgens, The Faith of the Early Fathers, Vol. 1, p. 413. ]



The fathers of the Church are only a definite witness to Tradition when expressing a point held universally and constantly or when expressing something that is in line with defined dogma. Taken individually or even in multiplicity, they can be dead wrong and even dangerous. St. Basil the Great said that the Holy Spirit is second to the Son of God in order and dignity, in a horrible and even heretical attempt to explain the Holy Trinity.



St. Basil (363): “The Son is not, however, second to the Father in nature, because the Godhead is one in each of them, and plainly, too, in the Holy Spirit, even if in order and dignity He is second to the Son (yes, this we do concede!), though not in such a way, it is clear, that He were of another nature.” [Jurgens, The Faith of the Early Fathers, Vol. 2: 940 .]



When St. Basil says above that the Godhead is one in Father, Son and Holy Spirit, he is correctly affirming the universal, apostolic Tradition. But when he says that the Holy Spirit is second in dignity to the Son he ceases to remain consistent with this Tradition and falls into error (material heresy, in fact). And the fathers made countless errors in attempting to defend or articulate the Faith.



St. Augustine wrote an entire book of corrections. St. Fulgentius and a host of others, including St. Augustine, held that it was certain that infants who die without baptism descend into the tormenting fires of Hell, a position that was later condemned by Pope Pius VI. As Pope Pius VI confirmed, unbaptized infants go to Hell, but to a place in Hell where there is no fire.

Denzinger 1526: "The doctrine which rejects as a Pelagian fable, that place of the lower regions (which the faithful generally designate by the name of the limbo of children) in which the souls of those departing with the sole guilt of original sin are punished with the punishment of the condemned, exclusive of the punishment of fire, just as if, by this very fact, that these who remove the punishment of fire introduced that middle place and state free of guilt and of punishment between the kingdom of God and eternal damnation, such as that about which the Pelagians idly talk,--false, rash, injurious to Catholic schools."


But St. Augustine was so outspoken in favor of this error that it became the common and basically unchallenged teaching for more than 500 years, according to The Catholic Encyclopedia.



The Catholic Encyclopedia, Vol. 9, “Limbo,” p. 257: “On the special question, however, of the punishment of original sin after death, St. Anselm was at one with St. Augustine in holding that unbaptized infants share in the positive sufferings of the damned; and Abelard was the first to rebel against the severity of the Augustinian tradition on this point.”[The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 9, “Limbo,” 1910, p. 257.]



This is why Catholics don’t form definite doctrinal conclusions from the teaching of a father of the Church or a handful of fathers; a Catholic goes by the infallible teaching of the Church proclaimed by the popes; and a Catholic assents to the teaching of the fathers of the Church when they are in universal and constant agreement from the beginning and in line with Catholic dogmatic teaching.



Pope Benedict XIV, Apostolica (# 6), June 26, 1749: “The Church’s judgment is preferable to that of a Doctor renowned for his holiness and teaching.”[The Papal Encyclicals, Vol. 1 (1740-1878), p. 29.]



Errors of the Jansenists, #30: “When anyone finds a doctrine clearly established in Augustine, he can absolutely hold it and teach it, disregarding any bull of the pope.”- Condemned by Pope Alexander VIII[Denzinger 1320.]



Pope Pius XII, Humani generis (# 21), Aug. 12, 1950: “This deposit of faith our Divine Redeemer has given for authentic interpretation not to each of the faithful, not even to theologians, but only to the Teaching Authority of the Church.’”[The Papal Encyclicals, Vol. 4 (1939-1958), pp. 178-179.]



The Catholic Church recognizes infallibility in no saint, theologian or early Church father. It is only a pope operating with the authority of the Magisterium who is protected by the Holy Spiritt from teaching error on faith or morals. So, when we examine and show how Churchmen have erred on the topics of baptism of blood this is 100% consistent with the teaching of the Church, which has always acknowledged that any Churchman, no matter how great, can make errors, even significant ones. Finally, I will quote a Pope, whose teaching ends all debate on the subject:

Pope Eugene IV, “Cantate Domino,” Council of Florence, ex cathedra: “No one, whatever almsgiving he has practiced, even if he has shed blood for the name of Christ, can be saved, unless he has persevered within the bosom and unity of the Catholic Church.”


Saturday, March 28, 2009

Mistranslation of Trent concerning :Baptism of Desire

Mistranslation of Trent concerning: Baptism of Desire

OBJECTION- In Session 6, Chapter 4 of its decree on Justification, the Council of Trent teaches that justification can take place by the water of baptism or its desire:

"This translation however cannot, since promulgation of the Gospel, be effected except through the laver of regeneration or its desire, as it is written:Unless a man be born again of water and the Holy Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God." ( Jn. 3:5) http://www.ewtn.com/library/COUNCILS/TRENT6.htm#1

ANSWER- [Preliminary Note: If Sess. 6, Chap. 4 of Trent were teaching what the baptism of desire advocates claim (which it isn’t), then it would mean that every man must receive baptism or at least have the actual desire/vow for baptism to be saved.


the Latin is :

"Caput 4. Insinuatur descriptio justificationis impii, et modus ejus in statu gratiæ Quibus verbis justificationis impii descriptio insinuatur, ut sit translatio ab eo statu, in quo homo nascitur filius primi Adæ, in statum gratiæ et »adoptionis filioram« Dei, per secundum Adam Jesum Christum Salvatorem nostrum; quæ quidem translatio post Evangelium promulgatum sine lavacro regenerationis aut ejus voto fieri non potest, sicut scriptum est: »Nisi quis renatus fuerit ex aqua et Spiritu Sancto, non potest introire in regnum Dei"


According to this understanding ( i.e.
"at least to have the actual desire/vow for baptism"), it would seem that it would be a serious error to say that any unbaptized person could be saved if he doesn’t have at least the desire/vow for water baptism. But 99% of the people who quote this passage in favor of baptism of desire don’t even believe that one must desire baptism to be saved! They believe that Jews, Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims, etc. can be saved who don’t even desire water baptism.

Thus, 99% of those who quote this passage reject even what they claim it is teaching. Frankly, this fact just shows the dishonesty and the bad will of many baptism of desire advocates in attempting to quote this passage as if they were devoted to its teaching when, in fact, they don’t believe in it at all and are in error for teaching that non-Catholics can be saved who don’t even desire water baptism.]

Monday, March 16, 2009

Watering Down Water-- John 3:5

With His most solemn preface to a declarative statement, which indicates a gravely important truth absolutely necessary for belief, the Lord Jesus Christ declared:

"Amen, amen, I say to you unless a man is born again of water and the Holy Ghost, he cannot enter the kingdom of God." (Jn.3:5-DRV/Vulgate)

Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. (KJV)


Watering Down Water