Holy Saturday: Francis the Balthasarian & Balthasar’s Heresies on the Incarnation & Hell
Balthasar makes the shocking statement that the Incarnation is “suspended” while Jesus is in the tomb:
“Holy Saturday is thus a kind of suspension, as it were, of the Incarnation, whose result is given back to the hands of the Father and which the Father will renew and definitively confirm by the Easter Resurrection” (“The Descent into Hell”, Spirit and Institution, Explorations in Theology, vol. IV, pp 411-412) – Unam Sanctam Catholicam website
In 2018, Francis owed the Church and the whole world a public denial of the heretical words attributed to him by Eugenio Scalfari, a 93-year-old atheist and abortion advocate, that made worldwide headlines.
The Vatican’s statement that Scalfari’s article is not “faithful” to Francis’s exact words is not enough to redress the damage that the Francis has done by allowing this to happen for the second time.
In 2018, Vox reported the denial of Hell is mostly a liberal Protestant and Hans Urs von Balthasar heresy and that “Francis’s ‘doublespeak’ puts him in a precarious spot” as a Catholic:
Still, most of these modern theologians largely come from Protestant traditions, which lack the same formalized structure and codified doctrine as the Catholic Church. That said, some recent major Catholic thinkers have indeed pushed back on the idea of hell as popularly understood. In the 1980s, Swiss theologian Hans Urs von Balthasar, for example, flirted with reconciliation in his book Dare We Hope That All Men Be Saved?…
… Francis’s “doublespeak” puts him in a precarious spot
But by participating in a kind of bait and switch — putting forth potentially heretical ideas, then formally denying them — Francis leaves himself open to the charge of disingenuousness. He’s able to signal sympathy for progressive theology, but does not have the responsibility of answering to conservatives or formally advocating for doctrinal change. It’s a canny political move, but one that destabilizes the nature of the Catholic Church as a centralized, formal body: the very thing that sets the Catholic Church apart from other Western Christian denominations. [https://www.vox.com/2018/3/30/17179952/pope-francis-hell-vatican-interview-scalfari-italian]
Carolyn Chau, who is a theologian at King’s University College at the University of Western Ontario, and Peter Casarella, a theologian at DePaul University, say Francis despite the Vatican’s “doublespeak” is a Balthasarian:
At the same time, it is hard to pigeonhole Father von Balthasar as a conservative. “Von Balthasar was also a sharp critic of an inward-looking, self-referential church,” said Peter Casarella, a theologian at DePaul University.
Dr. Chau said… what seems to resonate most with Pope Francis has been the Balthasarian emphasis on how the church encounters the world.
When he was still cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, the new Pope cited Father von Balthasar when he visited Quebec City for the 49th International Eucharistic Congress in 2008…
… The most unconventional part of Father von Balthasar’s work came after he met Adrienne von Speyr, a medical doctor who had mystical visions. From their encounter came one of his most disputed ideas: that on Holy Saturday, Christ didn’t go to the realm of the dead as a victorious liberator of righteous souls but as one who suffered so others wouldn’t. The claim triggered an academic row, with one theologian branding it quasi-heretical, Dr. Kilby said.[https://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/theologians-parse-popes-words-for-the-gospel-of-balthasar/article10548791/]
In First Things, Theologian Alyssa Lyra Pitstick, in a back and forth with Francis Catholic Fr. Edward T. Oakes, S.J., said that apparently Francis the Balthasarian is a liberal Protestant heretic:
Then, too, Oakes claims I dismiss Luther and Calvin “just for being Protestant” and that I consider the genealogy from Nicholas of Cusa to Balthasar via these two “probative merely by mentioning” it. I highlighted this lineage first to indicate that the doctrine of Christ suffering in hell has relatively recent origins; from its beginnings to the Reformation, the Church believed quite the opposite. But this genealogy is also important to the question of Balthasar’s status as a Catholic ecclesial theologian: The Catholic tradition rejected Nicholas’ proposal, while the idea was deliberately developed against the Catholic doctrine in the Protestant ambience. If Balthasar takes up what Catholics rejected and what Protestants used to distinguish themselves, one may legitimately question Balthasar’s Catholicity on these grounds-for it is not what we share that separates us but precisely our differences. It is fallacious for Oakes to suggest I think non-Catholics speak no truth simply because I argue that some of them are mistaken on one point.
Perhaps Oakes might now address my original difficulties: Can one doctrine truly be the development of another if the two are contradictory? Does the tradition’s material profession (the content of belief) have as much authority as the formal profession? And since Balthasar’s theology of Christ’s descent entails a de facto rejection of Catholic tradition and its authority, what must we conclude about Balthasar’s service as a Catholic ecclesial theologian? Perhaps in the end we must say, however reluctantly, that after Luther, Calvin, and Barth, Balthasar has made a real contribution to Protestant ecclesial theology. [https://www.firstthings.com/article/2007/01/more-on-balthasar-hell-and-heresy]
The Unam Sanctam Catholicam explains “The Heresies of Balthasar” and apparently Francis the Balthasarian heresies:
Balthasar’s dissatisfaction with the privation theory of sin leads him to posit a real, ontological existence for sin, contrary to Augustine, Thomas, the implications of the Catechism and almost all of ancient and medieval Catholic tradition. Sin becomes an ontological reality by a sort of negative creation, in which man, by the passion and willfulness that he puts into sinning, turns sin into a positive reality. Balthasar says:
“It is possible to distinguish between the sin and the sinner…Because of the energy that man has invested in it, sin is a reality, it is not ‘nothing.'” (Theo-Drama, vol. V, pp. 266, 314).
Because sin has this ontological reality, it can be abstracted from the sinner and, consequently, removed to another locus. Here Balthasar’s theology of sin crosses into his soteriology. Because sin is a reality that can be separated from the sinner, it is possible to “load” it on to Christ, who literally assumes the sins of every person in His death, but especially in His Descent:
“[Sin] has been isolated from the sinner…separated from the sinner by the work of the Cross” (ibid., 285, 314).
Thus, because sin is able to be loaded onto Christ, Christ literally takes the sins, and the guilt, of every sinner on to Himself, and in His death and Descent, literally becomes sin, in such a real, metaphysical sense that Balthasar makes the shocking statement that the Incarnation is “suspended” while Jesus is in the tomb:
“Holy Saturday is thus a kind of suspension, as it were, of the Incarnation, whose result is given back to the hands of the Father and which the Father will renew and definitively confirm by the Easter Resurrection” (“The Descent into Hell”, Spirit and Institution, Explorations in Theology, vol. IV, pp 411-412).. [http://unamsanctamcatholicam.blogspot.com/2012/02/heresies-of-balthasar.html?m=1]
– Doctor of the Church St. Francis de Sales totally confirmed beyond any doubt the possibility of a heretical pope and what must be done by the Church in such a situation:
“[T]he Pope… WHEN he is EXPLICITLY a heretic, he falls ipso facto from his dignity and out of the Church, and the Church MUST either deprive him, or, as some say, declare him deprived, of his Apostolic See.”
(The Catholic Controversy, by St. Francis de Sales, Pages 305-306)
Saint Robert Bellarmine, also, said “the Pope heretic is not deposed ipso facto, but must be declared deposed by the Church.”
– “If Francis is a Heretic, What should Canonically happen to him?”: http://www.thecatholicmonitor.com/2020/12/if-francis-is-heretic-what-should.html
– “Could Francis be a Antipope even though the Majority of Cardinals claim he is Pope?”: http://www.thecatholicmonitor.com/2019/03/could-francis-be-antipope-even-though.html
– LifeSiteNews, “Confusion explodes as Pope Francis throws magisterial weight behind communion for adulterers,” December 4, 2017:
The AAS guidelines explicitly allows “sexually active adulterous couples facing ‘complex circumstances’ to ‘access the sacraments of Reconciliation and the Eucharist.'”
– On February 2018, in Rorate Caeli, Catholic theologian Dr. John Lamont:
“The AAS statement… establishes that Pope Francis in Amoris Laetitia has affirmed propositions that are heretical in the strict sense.”
– On December 2, 2017, Bishop Rene Gracida:
“Francis’ heterodoxy is now official. He has published his letter to the Argentina bishops in Acta Apostlica Series making those letters magisterial documents.”
Pray an Our Father now for the restoration of the Church by the bishops by the grace of God.
– Intel Cryptanalyst-Mathematician on Biden Steal: “212Million Registered Voters & 66.2% Voting,140.344 M Voted…Trump got 74 M, that leaves only 66.344 M for Biden” [http://catholicmonitor.blogspot.com/2020/12/intel-cryptanalyst-mathematician-on.html?m=1]
– Will US be Venezuela?: Ex-CIA Official told Epoch Times “Chávez started to Focus on [Smartmatic] Voting Machines to Ensure Victory as early as 2003”: http://catholicmonitor.blogspot.com/2020/12/will-us-be-venezuela-ex-cia-official.html– Tucker Carlson’s Conservatism Inc. Biden Steal Betrayal is explained by “One of the Greatest Columns ever Written” according to Rush: http://catholicmonitor.blogspot.com/2021/01/tucker-carlsons-conservatism-inc-biden.html?m=1 – A Hour which will Live in Infamy: 10:01pm November 3, 2020:
http://www.thecatholicmonitor.com/2021/01/a-hour-which-will-live-in-infamy-1001pm.html?m=1 What is needed right now to save America from those who would destroy our God given rights is to pray at home or in church and if called to even go to outdoor prayer rallies in every town and city across the United States for God to pour out His grace on our country to save us from those who would use a Reichstag Fire-like incident to destroy our civil liberties. [Is the DC Capitol Incident Comparable to the Nazi Reichstag Fire Incident where the German People Lost their Civil Liberties?: http://catholicmonitor.blogspot.com/2021/01/is-dc-capital-incident-comparable-to.html?m=1 and Epoch Times Show Crossroads on Capitol Incident: “Anitfa ‘Agent Provocateurs‘”:
Pray an Our Father now for the grace to know God’s Will and to do it. Pray an Our Father now for America. Pray an Our Father now for the restoration of the Church as well as the Triumph of the Kingdom of the Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart of Mary.