Urgent: Not a TRO but Self-Restraint

The Bishop of Bacolod has won the Supreme Court order restraining the Comelec from coercing the Diocese to take down its contentious poster on Team Buhay and Team Patay based on the Fair Election Act (RA 9066).

The Bishop claims the Cathedral is private property, and the right to put up the posters flows from the Constitutional guarantee of free speech. Comelec officials and many others in the country interpret that poster as election propaganda. As such, in election fairness, it ought to stay within size limitations imposed on candidates.

With all the other cases the Supreme Court has in its dockets, it must now decide this case.

I will not dare to comment on the merits of the legal case. I leave that to the infamous Guro of Destabilization. And the final judgment of Supreme Court.

For me, the restraint required is not matter for the Supreme Court. It should come from the Diocese itself.

Of course, the cathedral is private property. But it is private property on which stands a Catholic church which is the seat (cathedra) of the Catholic bishop. It is the symbol of the full local Catholic Church. That designation is ironic here, since “Catholic” originally means not “for us” but “for all.” While Church property is private from the viewpoint of civil law, it is property “for all,” not just “for some,” to be used for the public worship and private prayer of the Disciples of Jesus Christ and to be used for the proclamation of his Gospel. Because of these functions, such Church property was consecrated, i.e., removed from the world of profane uses, and reserved for sacred purposes.

Some places in the world are sacred, and need to be protected for the sacred, not reduced to the profane pitched battles of politics. Can you imagine what would happen if different churches and cathedrals, both within the Catholic Church and outside it, with divergent views, would go the way of free speech of Bacolod’s private Cathedral and started plastering their walls with partisan political propaganda?

In my view, it is inappropriate to take the sacred structure which belongs to all the Catholic baptized of the diocese, among them its saints, sinners and independent-minded baptized, dedicated to their worship, prayer, and the proclamation of Gospel truth and use it to display a huge electoral partisan poster. A partisan poster is in itself divisive. Its message is always contentious, because as partisan there is always an acceptable “other side.” Placed on a Cathedral wall, however, it gives the impression, willy-nilly, that God and his Church are behind the endorsed candidates and in rejection of the non-anointed. Those rejected by God and his Church conveys, willy-nilly, the rejected candidates have no place in the Church. That was the unfortunate message given in one Cathedral of the North where people who were in support of the RH-Law were told to leave the church. They did.

The other unfortunate message given is that by the sacred endorsement of the anointed candidates by Jesus Christ and his Church the particular candidate endorsed are necessarily qualified for office. The impression given is that because of the Church endorsement, they are worthy of the voter’s vote. No matter the status of the faith, the values, the education, the skills, the track record, the history of the individual, because the Church puts a luminescent halo atop the name of the candidate, that person is qualified for office. That, of course, is pure mystification – even were the manner in which a person voted on the RH issue a valid issue.

Of course, there may be those who precisely want to expel from the Church those who do not think like them, and would be happy through such a caper as the divisive sign on the Bacolod Cathedral, to divide the Church into those who think in the red like them, and those who do not think like them. They do so presumably because they consider themselves armed with infallible truth, empowered to bind the consciences of the faithful to their narrow positions, able to consign to heaven or to hell.

They don’t. In the Catholic Church they do not teach infallibly – and certainly not in the issue of Team Buhay and Team Patay. Let them present to the Catholic citizen their views on authoritative Church teachings and their values, but do not pretend to bind conscience where it cannot yet be bound. Let the Catholic consider his options in an autonomous world ultimately created by a loving God who redeems and respects peoples’ freedom. Let the Catholic citizen make up his own mind according to the dictates of his/her own conscience.

For those who respect dogma, the following excerpt from the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, Lumen Gentium, may be sobering:

“The holy people of God shares also in Christ’s prophetic office; it spreads abroad a living witness to Him, especially by means of a life of faith and charity and by offering to God a sacrifice of praise, the tribute of lips which give praise to His name. The entire body of the faithful, anointed as they are by the Holy One, cannot err in matters of belief. They manifest this special property by means of the whole peoples’ supernatural discernment in matters of faith when “from the Bishops down to the last of the lay faithful” they show universal agreement in matters of faith and morals. That discernment in matters of faith is aroused and sustained by the Spirit of truth. It is exercised under the guidance of the sacred teaching authority, in faithful and respectful obedience to which the people of God accepts that which is not just the word of men but truly the word of God. Through it, the people of God adheres unwaveringly to the faith given once and for all to the saints, penetrates it more deeply with right thinking, and applies it more fully in its life” (12).

Infallibility involves not merely the bishops, but also the lay, not merely those who agree, but also those who don’t. It requires universal agreement in matters of faith and morals.

Clearly, in matters of sexual morals and such as Humanae Vitae, this universal agreement is still outstanding. Until it is achieved, we are in a state of discernment towards what is not just the word of men but truly the word of God. Here, the participation of laypeople, even of people who have been numbered among “Team Patay,” is welcome.

I submit: no matter the decision of the Supreme Court, partisan political posters on Cathedral walls don’t help this discernment.

About Joel Tabora, S.J.

Jesuit. Educator
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61 Responses to Urgent: Not a TRO but Self-Restraint

  1. Rap Tingin says:

    I was expecting the SC would favor the Diocese of Bacolod. Oh well, what a pity.

  2. Fr.Nori says:

    St. Thomas Aquinas explained the Magisterium (Infallibility) of the Holy Catholic Church using two classical terms: “neccesitas di precetto” and “neccesitas di mezzo”. In this case, neccesitas di precetto applies and the faithful “for us” or “for all” should heed to the ecclessiastical authority.

    • Cedric says:

      I believe that the good father joel tabora was simply trying to point out the even the lay faithful may have the gift of supernatural discernment (or sensus fidelium) in view of moral discernment.
      Fr. Joel just pointed out that the team buhay and team patay poster outside the cathedral deprives the lay catholics to take the necessary labor and joy of discernment, to foster greater personal accountability on the art of the lay faithful in their conscience and faith in their exercise of political election.
      Why is it hard to understand? Why is it too easy for some to throw mire on the essay and the writer of this column?
      I do not understand.

      • Fr.Nori says:

        “Sensus fidei “or commonly known as “communion of saints” should be viewed in the context of ecclessiastical communion and not apart from it otherwise even the lay faithful will lost its 3 munus: prophetic,sacerdotal and kingship.
        “The entire body of the faithful, anointed as they are by the Holy One, cannot err in matters of belief. They manifest this special property by means of the whole people’s supernatural discernment in matters of faith when “from the Bishops down to the last of the lay faithful” they show universal agreement in matters of faith and morals. That discernment in matters of faith is aroused and sustained by the Spirit of truth. It is exercised under the guidance of the sacred teaching authority, in faithful and respectful obedience to which the people of God accepts that which is not just the word of men but truly the word of God” LG 12

      • Cedric says:

        To fr. Nori:

        You are relevant in quoting such provision from the LG.

        However, we cannot deny that historical past that the lay faithful did play a crucial role in the tradition and life of the church when the church hierarchy and priests erred during the Arian crisis. So, is sensus fidelium an ABSOLUTE gift reserved ONLY on the Holy Spirit to the priests and the hierarchy?

        The Church is the the entire people of God. The gift of baptism is for the entire people of God.

        I must admit with great admiration that the church hierarchy have done great good than bad to the Church that we have today but would it be fait also to give the laity, even in the small space of personal discernment and prayer in view of deciding for moral issues, and even on the choice for political election?

      • Cedric says:

        Sensus fidei as communion of saints?

        Is it not the “sense of the faith”? Kindly check your translation.

        To: Cedric
        ” In the believer this gift, the sensus fidei constitutes a sort of supernatural instinct which has a vital co- naturality with the object of faith itself. We note that the simple faithful carry with them this certainty, this firm sense of faith. The sensus fidei is a criterion for discerning whether or not a truth belongs to the living deposit of the Apostolic Tradition. It also has a propositional value for the Holy Spirit never ceases to speak to the Churches and to guide them towards the whole truth. Today, however, it is particularly important to explain the criteria that make it possible to distinguish the authentic sensus fidelium from its counterfeit. It is certainly not a kind of public ecclesial opinion and invoking it in order to contest the teachings of the Magisterium would be unthinkable, since the sensus fidei cannot be authentically developed in believers, except to the extent in which they fully participate in the life of the Church, and this demands responsible adherence to the Magisterium, to the deposit of faith.

        Today, this same supernatural sense of faith in believers also gives rise to vigorous reactions against the prejudice which holds that religions — and in particular the monotheistic religions — are intrinsically vehicles of violence, especially because they claim the existence of a universal truth. Some consider that the “polytheism of values” alone would guarantee tolerance and civil peace and would be in conformity with the spirit of a pluralistic democratic society. In this direction, your study on the theme, “God the Trinity, Unity of Human Beings. Christianity and Monotheism”, is particularly timely”.
        Sensus fedei is not only a question of individual cristian gift of discernement but must be incorporated in the Mystical Body of Christ: “The communion of saints is the spiritual solidarity which binds together the faithful on earth, the souls in purgatory, and the saints in heaven in the organic unity of the same mystical body under Christ its head, and in a constant interchange of supernatural offices. The participants in that solidarity are called saints by reason of their destination and of their partaking of the fruits of the Redemption (1 Corinthians 1:2 — Greek Text). The damned are thus excluded from the communion of saints. The living, even if they do not belong to the body of the true Church, share in it according to the measure of their union with Christ and with the soul of the Church. St. Thomas teaches (III:8:4) that the angels, though not redeemed, enter the communion of saints because they come under Christ’s power and receive of His gratia capitis. The solidarity itself implies a variety of inter-relations: within the Church Militant, not only the participation in the same faith, sacraments, and government, but also a mutual exchange of examples, prayers, merits, and satisfactions; between the Church on earth on the one hand, and purgatory and heaven on the other, suffrages, invocation, intercession, veneration. These connotations belong here only in so far as they integrate the transcendent idea of spiritual solidarity between all the children of God. Thus understood, the communion of saints, though formally defined only in its particular bearings (Council of Trent, Sess. XXV, decrees on purgatory; on the invocation, veneration, and relics of saints and of sacred images; on indulgences), is, nevertheless, dogma commonly taught and accepted in the Church. It is true that the Catechism of the Council of Trent (Pt. I, ch. x) seems at first sight to limit to the living the bearing of the phrase contained in the Creed, but by making the communion of saints an exponent and function, as it were, of the preceding clause, “the Holy Catholic Church”, it really extends to what it calls the Church’s “constituent parts, one gone before, the other following every day”; the broad principle it enunciates thus: “every pious and holy action done by one belongs and is profitable to all, through charity which seeketh not her own”.

  3. Rap Tingin says:

    Kawawa ang Pilipinas.

  4. Rap Tingin says:

    Hindi bale. Dapat hindi lang tayo nagpapaunder sa kanila, those who claim they know what is right. Hindi naman tayo ang nasisira. Sila.

  5. snabur says:


  6. I can’t understand why it is easy for one to see the Bacolod diocese’s move as “partisan” when it can also be seen as the shepherd’s way of warning his flock against the wolves. RH law is a moral issue — not just a political one. The Church has the mission to tell Her children: “Beware of these people that promote immoral and anti-life laws”.

    What I can’t understand most is why when a priest would favor an anti-life law, defend it and would even try to make it “Catholic” is not viewed as being “partisan” when it is as clear as the sun that it is. Surely, the reason behind this “partisan” move to defend the RH law cannot be the defense of faith and morals upheld by the Magisterium. For even the Magisterium itself is being challenged here just to promote an anti-life (anti-Magisterium law). Isn’t this more “partisan” than that of the Bacolod diocese’s move?

    • You said it perfectly Rubans Bantiles! Great thanks! I hope more people will be like you: critically analytic!

    • Rai Olos says:

      As a democratic country, the use of our freedom should be hinged on mutual respect, and proper discourse. However, the presence of a political facade, one that is very shallow, that a moral institution insinuates to its members makes the move very political rather than moral. Not only is it abusive on the part of not upholding mutual respect, but it also does not forward proper discourse which is needed to let the society understand. It clearly attacks the persons involve, not the idea behind such a tarp. In that case, the “warning” creates an unnecessary conflict. Under the assumption and arguing that moral and political aspects usually go hand-in hand, intertwined through time, doesn’t mean that the measure to uphold moral stances should be politically dynamic (like this one), in such a way that it already dilutes the moral principles it is supposed to uphold. More so, there is a clear reflection on the part of the constituents of the Church regarding their position on the passage of the RH Bill. Since this is the real problem, this approach of the Church does not target the cause. It only demonizes those who made the passage of the Bill successful, but not really changing the society. As an institution that reveres itself with good and high level of moral ascendancy, this should be the move that the Church has undertaken. What they should have done, and continuously do, is to proactively reinforce the moral standing of their people, which composes the majority of the Philippine population. It is not an easy thing to do, but this is one of the morally upright means by which they can forward their cause. Since laws simply mirror the social goals we have, then morally enforcing individuals would be the most appropriate method taken by the Church. Not only do they dutifully fill in their roles, but they become more immersed with the social predicament related to the passage of RH Bill. By then, and if they are successful, the fruits shall be reflected by the law. After all, the laws change through time because the laws adapt to the needs of time.

      • childlike says:

        What is really the purpose of law? I think it directs man towards the common good…The human law in order for it to be moral must be in accordance with the moral natural law…That’s why if the law made by man is not in accordance with the moral law, therefore it is a perverse law or shall i say an “immoral law”, if there is such term…The very frist principle of moral law is to do good and avoid evil… Is preventing life “to be” a good action. Think about it…

      • Rai Olos says:

        I think the Church is not the only institution that can dictate morality, it is also the job of the Government to guard it via materialize laws. Since morality evolves, is this not also a form and example of that evolution?

        More so, how can we see moral principles upheld by such a conduct? This clearly mud-slings the person, attacks them personally. I cannot see any moral principles upheld. Taking a perspective of an ordinary individual, assumed to be economically active but not necessarily fully aware of the issues at hand, this is a political facade taken up by one of the most trusted moral institutions in my country…

    • Arnold Abejaron says:

      If RH Law protects maternal life it becomes anti-life?

      • childlike says:

        is it about maternal life only? or shall we say with the life of the unborn?…The Church protects both the life of the mother and of the unborn..The RH Law is so bias because it just look at the concern of the mother, how about the unborn’s life. Is it not that both of the two lives are important? Think about it?

  7. Some questions to Joel Tabora: (1) Are you still a priest? (2) Are you still a Jesuit? (3) Are you still a Catholic? and (4) Are you still a Filipino?
    It seems you are out of this world!!!

    • inonegod says:

      Sister, I know Fr. Joel. He is a very good priest. One of the best Jesuits I have known. A true son of the Church– inclusive and sensitive to peoples of other faith particularly Islam. And yes a patriotic Filipino. Sister, you may the one who is out of this world.

    • Fr.Nori says:

      Does he recite the Liturgy of the Hours faithfully and recite daily the Holy Rosary?

      • Cedric says:

        To sr. Athens and fr. Nori:

        Gravely foul!

        Your comments may just be cited as classic examples for a course on LOGIC’s argumentum ad hominem! (-:

      • Tony says:

        and what have you done for the poor, Fr. Nori? if you have done just a tenth of what Tabora has done for the poor of Payatas, then you can question him about reciting the liturgy of the hours faithfully and the rosary/ REad Matthew 25.

    • Arnold Abejaron says:

      I agree with Cedric that your arguments are in the nature of argumentum ad hominem. As it is, you seem to give an impression that Catholics are people who have no mind of their own; that Catholics are unthinking people who must follow what the bishops or priests or the members of the hierarchy tell hook line and sinker. Whatever happened to free will that God gave the people? Please do not insult the gift that God gave us.

    • Arnold Abejaron says:

      The fact is this comment makes me uncomfortable because it gives the impression that to be Catholic is to be “unempowered”; to be “unable to speak and think for himself”; for this reason I prefer to be called a Christian who follows the life of Christ. Christ being unafraid to challenge the authorities who defy the essence of God’s love because of blind adherence to traditions and beliefs. Sorry. But I just get to disgusted to people who act self-righteously and judge other people.

    • Tony says:

      and who are you to pass judgment on Tabora? ARe you God? ARe you Jesus Christ? Are you the Pope? Are you his religious superior? who are you?

      • Fr.Nori says:

        As Christian, only God can judge the person like Fr. Joel. It is a subjective judgement (foro interno) and only God know Fr. Joel’s heart but objective judgement can be applied in the case of Fr. Joel stand on RH Bill which is against the Catholic Social Doctrine and Magisterium of the Church. By the way Tony, who are you to defend Fr Joel? does he need a mediator,an arbiter,guardian angel, advocate…etc. I think it is better to let fr. joel speak for himself and you speak for yourself only! God bless us all!

  8. andrew lim says:

    1. There’s a new version of the TARP, which I saw on Dicky Boncan’s site. Gone are the names of Trillanes, Honasan, Villar, etc and they only have the name of Mitos and the Ang Kapatiran candidates for “Team Buhay”. Is this an admission the first list was wrong?

    2. I would like to pose this question to all here: Isn’t there a conflict of interest when the Church advocates specific names to vote/not vote, and then participate in the electoral process as an electoral watchdog, through the PPCRV? How can the PPCRV still claim to be impartial when the Church has its own candidates to promote (Mitos and the three Ang Kapatiran candidates, plus Team Buhay)? In its website, the PPCRV is described as ” The Church in Politics” and “A Response of Faith” in the “Who We Are” section.

    • andrew lim says:

      May I add that the PPCRV has in its board of advisers all the bishops in the country and its national spiritual director is Archbishop Lagdameo.

      • dboncan says:

        “you’re just playing with words. It’s specifically used here to pertain to specific names given out on who to vote/not vote. Re your anecdote with the barbers, I dont think they would know who Fr Tabora is so your translation is erroneous.”
        Andrew… re the barbers, I was being symbolic of priests who have been in the academe too long that they’ve forgotten what their calling entails…

        “I think it is highly irresponsible for the Church to take on this role of telling people who to vote/not vote on a regular basis. This is the Republic of the Phils, not the Catholic Republic of the Philippines. Its citizens are called Filipinos, not Catholic Filipinos.”

        >Except that, believe it or not, it was the lay Catholic organizations within the parish that actually initiated it and not the clergy themselves. Note that the CBCP has not encouraged (nor discouraged) such behavior because of this fact. As long as the issue is one of moral ascendancy, the Catholic Church has every right to inform the faithful what is right and what is wrong or on this case who have been consistent with Catholic teaching and who have abandoned them… if the posters were paid for by the Church and placed in public places, like say EDSA, then you would be correct in your assertion. Many Filipnos, me included, call themselves a Catholic Filipino… higher things trump lower things…

        p.s. I beg Fr. Tabora’s indulgence in using his blog site for our exchange… perhaps we could find another venue

  9. childlike says:

    The Diocese of Bacolod, headed by its Bishop, is just guiding its faithful not to fall in a trap..Would a mother let her son go on that way when in the first place the mother knows that it is dangerous there..?Think about it?

    • andrew lim says:

      your analogy doesnt work in this case because the mother is not naming names in an election.

      • dboncan says:

        Andrew, Fr. Tabora is right, the Church is engaging in partisanship… she is partisan to the moral teachings of the Church and uses as an example those who supported and acted as Catholics in this moral issue. Tabora seems to want to add more to it, well it’s his blog so be it. When you go down to the level of the grassroots in the parishes they (the faithful) have one question to ask their pastor; “who do we vote for”… translated… “tell us who to vote for because we don’t know the issues and have no capacity to discern it at the level of Fr. Tabora!” That happened to me recently in barbershop after explaining what the RHLaw was all about and why it’s politically charged for 15 minutes, they (the barbers) ask me one simple question,”who do we vote for.” It’s that way until politicians stop acting like entertainers and the Church starts catechizing and evangelizing people effectively and priests start acting like priests instead of just university presidents.

      • andrew lim says:

        Dicky, this is a response to your reply below, but it has no reply button anymore, so this will appear right after my first comment.

        Re “partisanship”, you’re just playing with words. It’s specifically used here to pertain to specific names given out on who to vote/not vote. Re your anecdote with the barbers, I dont think they would know who Fr Tabora is so your translation is erroneous. And you are not the only one they ask “who do we vote for” . For sure, they would also process the answers given by others they ask.

        I think it is highly irresponsible for the Church to take on this role of telling people who to vote/not vote on a regular basis. This is the Republic of the Phils, not the Catholic Republic of the Philippines. Its citizens are called Filipinos, not Catholic Filipinos.

      • Cedric says:

        To andrew lim (a reply to your comment below):

        I totally agree with you!

        The danger of the partisan posters in cathedrals, if this will be multiplied in different dioceses, would reduce the holy places as bulletin boards for “preferred candidates” of the catholic church.

        The question must not be “who will the people vote” (in reference to the specific names) but the “how” of choosing the candidates through proper, intensive election education by the catholic church on its faithful. The partisan poster actually manifests the weakness and the failure of the church on its faithful – humbly the church must recognize this shortcoming (and there is no need to debate because this is so obvious!).

      • childlike says:

        I am implying here about those dangerous people (way) whom the mother knows..Would she let her son go to them if she knows that her son will be endanger with them…So, the Church is just guiding its her flock not to trust those dangerous people who don’t want to promote life but rather death…

      • childlike says:

        Andrew lim: I think I can’t separate my being Filipino and my being Catholic, by doing so, I would be dichotomizing myself which is impossible…Will i slice myself into two? That’s why, I am a Catholic Filipino.. Remember the ” I “…

  10. Rai Olos says:

    Reblogged this on My Daily Anthology and commented:
    GOOD READ FROM Fr. Joel!!!

    This is my own take with the issue.

    The Supreme Court is the highest court of the land. Thus, it accommodates the “Supreme” good, and it can commit the “Supreme” mistake. However, we cannot pinpoint which is which because we are talking about a Supreme Institution of Justice. Contrary to how the Rule of Law is upheld by this court, I see the issue in a different sense. Though the matter regarding the RH Bill is really moral by essence, the manner by which it is upheld or countered by the Church is clearly political. In a sense, it is conceivable that the Church is taking the issue not only with its moral merits, but also through means that can hamper the real values of the State. This may bring about several things.

    Much as this country is democratic by form, it must be noted that mutual respect is the key element for a harmonious relationship within the society and the proper exercise of freedom is seen. In this case, the value of FREEDOM of SPEECH is clearly abused, and the value behind this freedom, mutual respect, is clearly not upheld. There are many ways for us to morally ground individuals, however, dictating their political principles is morally wrong, and is not the solution. Though I understand the dilemma of the Church and the reason for their stance, this method they adopted gives me a reason to draw back from a constricting belief system that harms my own principle, both moral and political. More so, the sentiment of the society is no longer upheld. With the clear mobilization of the Bill, the Church must not demonize individuals who are tasked to forward the goal of the most, by which I mean the clear supporters of the Bill. Rather, if they want their patrons to uphold their values, then they should work on the ground.

    Secondly, since their is a non-establishment clause in the Constitution that prevents the government from supporting any religion, the action created by the supreme court particularly hyphenates the bias it may have with Moral institution like that of the Church. My fear is the precedence it may bring about. As of the moment, their is already a form of block voting especially when we refer sects within a religion. This means already counters the real essence of elections, it being FREE, FULL, and INFORMED. However, if the highest court of the law allows such, it can actually foster this method of voting, which by itself reduces the dynamism of elections per se. Although the issue can revolutionize the who idea of dynamism, the other side of the coin tells and educates other religions to take their own stance. This harms both the society and the religion. First of, the society is being modeled to be mature in terms of its decisions. However, this method clearly implicates on the moral standing of a person, and thus is considered imposing. Secondly, it may harm the relationship between the religion and the society. With more rational people seeing the err in this action, it may tarnish the supposedly unbreakable bond between the religion and the society. But lastly, in connection with this relationship. What would it make a religion, or sets of religion, if it fails to uphold its moral standing and is diluted by its political facade such as what is happening in Bacolod. There are many ways, and in fact many effects, in assessing this scene. However, in one way or another, at least we garnered reactions all over the Philippines. This is another step towards social evolution. Sooner or later, the law will recognize this momentum, I just hope I am not yet dead when that time comes.

    • Cedric says:

      “There are many ways for us to morally ground individuals, however, dictating their political principles is morally wrong, and is not the solution.”

      I concur!

      From the way i see it, the cathedral in Bacolod seems learning to play the dirty game of politics by endorsing names of candidates and excluding those names it deemed to be unworthy, or worse, not vindicated by divine favor.
      In general, we have a very tricky, at times dirty, play of politics here in the Philippines. Sometimes the saints declared today ended up as the guilty sinners the following morning and vice versa. The church’s explicit endorsement of those names render the church to be very vulnerable, and even possibly, a potential accessory of any scandal or crime to be committed or already committed) by the very names they endorsed.

      What i am saying is simply that the Church retains its tradition of political “indifference” (vigilant but not enmeshed in the political circus of phil election), and makes it further resolve of conscience formation among the faithful and the parishioners.

  11. Mula sa tao at para sa tao at tao ang tunay na simbahan para kay Father Joel Tabora; a true witness himself, in perspective, action and faith. A proof of contemplative in action with the real church — the people!!!

  12. C Dino says:

    All the confusion and dissension in the Catholic Church is caused by theologians like J Tabora. The catechism and writings of our popes are clear on the issue of human sexuality and contraception. Some theologians like Tabora just don’t want to accept the stand of the church on this moral issue. What happened to this vow of obedience from our priests? I would not mind reading articles like this from somebody who is not a priest and expect this from a non catholic. Justifying your own understanding at the expense of putting your brother priests in bacolod in a bad light does not seem right. By always justifying your own beliefs contrary to what our church teaches, you’ll end up listening to your own voice and be unable to distinguish objective truths from your own truths. You are supposed to defend the church as priests. We can tolerate all the bad things spoken about our church from non Catholics but we will not stop rebuking or better yet reminding brothers in faith like you about the obedience of faith. We will pray for you.

    • Fr.Nori says:

      A son who was formed in his mother’s womb cannot speaks ill against his mother and vice versa or spit on the plate where one used to eat or vomit what you ate and eat it again.Our true Mother is the Holy Catholic Church and She is Mater et Magistra to all Her faithful sons and daughters.

  13. dboncan says:

    In the first place if Fr. Tabora and other priests like him gave more time clearly espousing that Catholic teaching on matters of sexual morality, family and life have real practical secular and societal applications and consequences.
    If he/they gave more voice to catechesis and evangelization, as their REAL job asks them to do.
    If rather than putting social justice ahead of first things and sounding vague all the time in matters of Church doctrine…
    If rather than raising sacramentalized militant social workers they raised Catholics with a deep love for the faith and the church in their schools
    THEN perhaps the institutionalization of contraception would not have passed because Catholics and other people of good will would know exactly why it shouldn’t
    AND some members of the church would not have had to resort to this kind of ridiculous campaign.
    Therefor, this ridiculous (but amusing) campaign I put squarely on his shoulders!

  14. Ruel Santos says:

    Dear Fr. Tabora,

    It seems you have reduced the meaning of the word “Catholic” as “for all”. You wrote: “That designation is ironic here, since “Catholic” originally means not “for us” but “for all.”
    From this entry, it shows that you have forgotten the actual meaning of the word as taught by the early Church Fathers.

    St. Vincent of Lerins has taught this in his Commonitorium:
    “Now in the Catholic Church itself we take the greatest care to hold that which has been believed everywhere, always and by all. That is truly and properly ‘Catholic,’ as is shown by the very force and meaning of the word, which comprehends everything almost universally. We shall hold to this rule if we follow universality, antiquity, and consent. We shall follow universality if we acknowledge that one Faith to be true which the whole Church throughout the world confesses; antiquity if we in no wise depart from those interpretations which it is clear that our ancestors and fathers proclaimed; consent, if in antiquity itself, we keep following the definitions and opinions of all, or certainly nearly all, Bishops and Doctors alike.”

    This has been held even by the ancient churches separated from Rome particularly that of the Orthodox Church as the true meaning of Catholic.

    • Fr.Nori says:

      It is in the eucharistic prayer where we priest celebrate the words of the liturgy which says that Jesus Christ died “for many” or “for all”…….its a problem of a text interpretation but has little significance in matters of faith because Catholic theology affirms that Christ has died for all sinners alike.

      • Fr.Nori says:

        it is an open question among exegetes and theologians to determine if the Words Jesus said during the Jewish Passover meant “for many” or “for all”. In either case Fr. Tabora has to explain on his blog what is anamnesis,memoria and zikkaron otherwise things will be mix up and equivocal terms are hard to understand.

  15. Fr.Nori says:


    Vatican Basilica
    Saturday, 24 November 2012
    ” Specifically, what makes the Church catholic is the fact that Christ in his saving mission embraces all humanity”.

  16. Arnold Abejaron says:

    It would have been less partisan or non-partisan if the Diocese did not endorse the names of candidates. It would have been more appealing if the Diocese have taught the people to discern for themselves who deserves to be voted and not to be voted. Clearly, the hierarchy is entangling itself excessively with politics regardless of how it is being sugar-coated. Perhaps it is high time that the State start taxing the church’s property in Bacolod as it is no longer being devoted exclusively for religious, educational or charitable – but also for political – purposes. 🙂

  17. Cedric says:

    To arnold abejaron:

    Yes! Tax the Church not as a reaction to the behavior of the church hierarch

    Blessed are the poor!

    If this will happen, I would admire the Church all the more because even the lowly construction workers are being taxed for the small income they have. Why not include the bishops, and their priests, especially here in metropolitan manila where a few priests foster a life of greater luxury and privileges than those in the provinces?

    CHURCH OF THE POOR…that we are.
    CHURCH OF THE POOR…that we must be…in word and deed.

    • andrew lim says:

      I support this initiative. If the CBCP wishes to continue with partisan politics and naming names, it should:

      1. renounce its tax exempt status
      2. disengage from the PPCRV

      The body politic can then deal with the CBCP just like any other political grouping.

      • Cedric says:

        Thanks andrew lim!

        From this, both the laity and the clergy will be treated equal before the state – in their rights and responsibilities, including the responsibility to oay taxes to the government.

        For me, this is truly a PRO-POOR initiative.

        Can the Diocese of Bacolod step forward and be the first to cast its support to this initiative as their expression of helping the poor, as being true to their calling of being “Team Buhay”?

        Walk the talk!

  18. anon says:

    Nowhere in that excerpt does it say that infallibility extends to the laypeople. In fact, the document speaks of infallibility as it pertains to that of the Pope and the bishops as shown in this excerpt:

    “And this infallibility with which the Divine Redeemer willed His Church to be endowed in defining doctrine of faith and morals, extends as far as the deposit of Revelation extends, which must be religiously guarded and faithfully expounded. And this is the infallibility which the Roman Pontiff, the head of the college of bishops, enjoys in virtue of his office, when, as the supreme shepherd and teacher of all the faithful, who confirms his brethren in their faith,(166) by a definitive act he proclaims a doctrine of faith or morals.(42*) And therefore his definitions, of themselves, and not from the consent of the Church, are justly styled irreformable, since they are pronounced with the assistance of the Holy Spirit, promised to him in blessed Peter, and therefore they need no approval of others, nor do they allow an appeal to any other judgment. For then the Roman Pontiff is not pronouncing judgment as a private person, but as the supreme teacher of the universal Church, in whom the charism of infallibility of the Church itself is individually present, he is expounding or defending a doctrine of Catholic faith.(43*) The infallibility promised to the Church resides also in the body of Bishops, when that body exercises the supreme magisterium with the successor of Peter. To these definitions the assent of the Church can never be wanting, on account of the activity of that same Holy Spirit, by which the whole flock of Christ is preserved and progresses in unity of faith.(44*)”

    And Paul VI was very clear in Humanae Vitae that artificial contraception is not compatible with our faith. Even before that, Pius XI stated that in Casti Connubbii. In fact, the Church has been consistently part of Church Tradition as shown through the teachings of the Church Fathers. John Paul II and Benedict XVI upheld that.

    Since when did we, the laypeople, become the Magisterium of the Church? If that’s the case, the Catholic Church would sooner be like the Protestants with their thousands of denominations than reach that “universal agreement” you speak of. A lot of Catholics are poorly catechized as it is; there’s no need to add further misinformation especially on matters of faith and morality.

    • Consider the text: “…To these definitions the assent of the Church can never be wanting, on account of the activity of that same Holy Spirit, by which the whole flock of Christ is preserved and progresses in unity of faith.(44*)” Even in matters of dogma, the assent of the Church is not wanting. This is brought about by the Holy Spirit – who works not only in the clergy and religious, but also in the laity.

      • anon says:

        I read that passage as an exhortation to everyone in the Church to follow the teaching and not that everyone in the Church, including the laity, must agree to it before the teaching will be held as infallible though. After all, the doctrines on artificial contraceptives was universally held until the 1930’s when a lot of Protestants started saying that they’re okay after all. What I want to say is, are doctrine and dogma bound to the spirit of the times and susceptible to change? If that’s the case, what with all the Catholics I know who don’t believe and agree with the sacraments and the Immaculate Conception of Mary, the doctrine on those two must not be infallible.

  19. Lux in Domino says:

    Who should say what is “Catholic”?

    Christ promised his Church personal assistance in her task of the evangelization and
    salvation of mankind. Ordinarily, he lends that assistance through the pastors who, as his
    vicars, lead the Church in his name. Christ gave this assistance first to the apostles, then to
    the bishops, who succeeded them in the pastoral ministry (Catechism of the Catholic
    Church, 81).
    One of the functions that Christ entrusted to the pastors of his Church is the Magisterium,
    the teaching of the Gospel of Christ in the name of Christ, who is the only teacher and
    pastor of our souls: “He who hears you hears me” (Lk 10:16).
    The Second Vatican Council declared: “The task of giving an authentic interpretation of
    the word of God, whether in its written form or in the form of Tradition, has been entrusted
    to the living teaching office of the Church alone.” The Magisterium of the Church is an
    explanatory source of theology because it interprets revelation without adding or removing
    anything from the deposit of faith. Naturally, the Magisterium is subordinated to Sacred
    Theology and the Magisterium are complementary Church ministries. They are not
    opposing forces, representing contrary interests in a dialectical struggle. It would be a
    serious mistake about the nature of both to think of them as such.
    The Magisterium is the contents of the official teaching of the Church as well as the
    exercise of her teaching role. This role is entrusted exclusively to the Hierarchy of the
    Church (the pope and the bishops united to him), which was established by Christ and
    received his pledge of the special assistance of the Holy Spirit in order to prevent any error
    in the exercise of its magisterial function.
    The task of authentically interpreting the word of God, whether written or handed on, has
    been entrusted exclusively to the living teaching office of the Church, whose authority is
    exercised in the name of Jesus Christ. (Second Vatican Council, DV,10)
    The Church is a prophetic community that preaches the word of God. As Christ was sent
    by the Father to be a witness to the truth, so also has the Church been sent by Christ to
    preach the Gospel to the entire human race, enabling all to believe and be saved. This
    prophetic nature is shown in the supernatural appreciation of the faith (sensus fidei) of the
    whole people of God, whereby his children unfailingly adhere to the faith.
    To guide the faithful in this growth and to teach the truth, Christ endowed his Church with
    a living Magisterium (Second Vatican Council, LG, 12; Catechism of the Catholic
    Church, 785, 888–892). This was the reason why Jesus Christ instituted in the Church a
    living, authentic, and never failing teaching authority. “This teaching authority he endowed with his own power; he endowed it with the Spirit of
    Truth; he authenticated it by miracles; and it was his will and solemn command that the
    doctrinal precepts of this Church be accepted as his own” (Leo XIII, Enc. Satis Cognitum).
    The mission of the Magisterium is not to reveal new truths –revelation ended with the
    death of the last Apostle– but rather to defend, guard, and interpret the received deposit of
    One of the most important historical responsibilities of the Magisterium is composing the
    Symbols of faith (Creeds) and the Catechisms, which contain and summarize the basic
    truths of Revelation. The oldest and most revered Symbols are the Apostle’s Creed, the
    Nicene Constantinopolitan Creed, and the Athanasian Creed. (The Catechism of the
    Catholic Church takes up this subject matter in nos. 185-197).
    The Church’s Magisterium even though carried out through human instruments is not a
    human Magisterium: “The Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my
    name, he will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to
    you” (Jn 14:26).
    The mission of the Magisterium is linked with the definitive character of the Covenant
    between God and his People. To fulfill this service, God made the universal Church
    infallible; it means that she cannot err in her teachings. The exercise of this charisma has
    the following characteristics:
    • The Roman Pontiff is infallible when solemnly teaches matters of faith or customs,
    or in his ordinary Magisterium, when he teaches truths concerning faith or morals
    which have to be held definitively by all Christians.
    • The College of Bishops under its head, the Pope, is subject of the same
    infallibility, when gathered together in an Ecumenical Council and exercising their
    Magisterium as teachers and judges of faith and morals, definitively declare for the
    universal Church a doctrine to be held concerning faith or morals; likewise, when
    the Bishops, dispersed throughout the world but maintaining the bond of union
    among themselves and with the successor of Peter, together with the same Roman
    Pontiff authentically teach matters of faith or morals, and are agreed that a
    particular teaching is definitively to be held.(Code of Canon Law, 749. )
    • The totality of the faithful possess a supernatural sense of faith; they are infallible
    when they unanimously believe that a truth has been revealed by God. Thus, the
    holy People of God shares also in Christ’s prophetic office. The entire body of the
    faithful cannot err in matters of belief. This characteristic is shown in the
    supernatural appreciation of the faith (sensus fidei) of the entire people, when,
    “from the bishops to the last of the faithful” they manifest a universal consensus in
    matters of faith and morals. (Second Vatican Council, LG, 12).
    The ordinary Magisterium of the Pope and of the bishops in communion with the Pope
    dispersed throughout the world enjoys also Christ’s assistance and is always authentic
    because it is exercised in the name and with the authority of Christ: “He who hears you,hears me” (Lk 10:16). It proposes infallible definitions when it sets forth truths contained
    in the Word of God, whether written or handed down in Tradition, or when it pronounces
    itself in a “definitive manner” (i.e., in a conclusive manner) on some truth.
    The scope of the Church’s Magisterium covers everything referring in any way to faith and
    morals. This has the following consequences:
    i) The Church has the right and duty to condemn all errors concerning faith and the
    salvation of souls.
    ii) The Church has the right and duty to make judgments, with maximum authority,
    on social questions. As the Code of Canon Law states in can. 747, 2: “The Church
    has the right always and everywhere to proclaim moral principles, even in respect
    of the social order, and to make judgments about any human matter in so far as this
    is required by fundamental human rights or the salvation of souls.”
    iii) By divine right, she has the duty to interpret the natural moral law, whose
    faithful fulfillment is necessary for salvation.
    iv) Regarding the interpretation of Holy Scripture, “no one should dare to rely on
    his own judgment … and to distort Sacred Scripture to fit meanings of his own that
    are contrary to the meaning that holy Mother Church has held and now holds; for it
    is her office to judge about the true sense and interpretation of Sacred Scripture”
    (Code of Canon Law, 747).
    Role of the Theologians
    Theologians receive revelation from the Church and receive faith within the Church. (John
    Paul II, “Homily at the Mass for the Roman Pontifical Universities”: L’Osservatore
    Romano, Nov. 9, 1981; CCC, 168–169)
    At the same time, theology is extremely important for the life of the Church. Besides its
    scientific value, theology shares in the salvific function of Christian faith. Theologians
    have a special ecclesial responsibility; they must make sure that the talent they have
    received—the capacity to penetrate deeper into the deposit of faith with their intelligence—
    yields fruit for the glory of God and the benefit of souls.
    In the Church, theologians are “teachers, for the equipment of the saints, for the work of
    ministry, for building up the body of Christ” (Eph 4:11–12). A good theologian should feel
    this responsibility and be aware that this scientific work is also a service to the Church:
    “Theology is an ecclesial science because it grows in the Church and works on the Church.
    Thus, theology is never the private affair of a specialist, cut off in a kind of ivory tower.
    Theology is a service of the Church; the theologian should feel himself dynamically
    involved in the mission of the Church, particularly in her prophetic mission.” (John Paul
    II, “Address at the Pontifical Gregorian University”: L’Osservatore Romano, Jan. 21,
    “A deep ecclesial awareness,” teaches Pope John Paul II, “will be the most certain criterion
    to safeguard you from the risk of building on a foundation other than the one laid by God”
    (John Paul II, “Homily to the Roman Pontifical Universities”: L’Osservatore Romano,
    Nov. 9, 1981). Further, he states, “Nobody can make of theology, as it were, a simple collection of his
    own personal ideas; everybody must be sure of being in close union with the mission of
    teaching the truth for which the Church is responsible” (John Paul II, Enc. Redemptor
    Hominis, 19: L’Osservatore Romano, Mar. 19, 1979).
    A clear manifestation of this ecclesial outlook, “feeling with the Church” (sentire cum
    Ecclesia), is the willingness to correct any personal opinion that may break with the
    Magisterium of the Church.
    “The role of the theologian is geared to the building up of ecclesial communion, so that the
    people of God may grow in the experience of faith” (Paul VI, “Letter to the Rector of the
    Louvain University,” Sep. 13, 1975).
    “We do not wish that a mistaken suspicion unduly take hold of your mind: that there is a
    rivalry between two primacies, that of science and that of authority. There is only one
    primacy in the field of divine doctrine: that of the revealed truth, that of the faith, to which
    both theology and ecclesiastical Magisterium want to give diverse, though converging,
    approvals” (Paul VI, “Address to the International Theological Commission,” Oct. 6, 1969)
    Ecclesial Dimensions of Theology
    Theology has the capacity and responsibility to enlighten the pastoral activity of the
    Church and the apostolate and spiritual life of each Christian.
    The task of the theologian is an ecclesial mission, a participation in the evangelizing
    mission of the Church, and a pre-eminent service to the ecclesial community. Hence the
    grave responsibility of the theologian, who should always have in mind that the People of
    God—particularly the priests and future priests who will have to educate them in the faith
    —have the right to have explained to them without ambiguities or reductions the
    fundamental truths of the Christian faith (John Paul II, “Address to Theology Professors in
    Salamanca, Spain”: L’Osservatore Romano, Dec. 20, 1982) .
    Theologians have great influence in the life of the soul. Therefore, their ecclesial
    responsibility should lead them to be extremely prudent in the publication and diffusion of
    their conclusions; they must avoid any scandal or confusion among the faithful in matters
    of faith or morals.
    The faithful have the right not to be troubled by theories and hypotheses that they cannot
    judge, or that are easily reduced or manipulated by public opinion for ends that are opposed
    to the truth. On the day of his death, John Paul I stated: “Among the rights of the faithful,
    one of the greatest is the right to receive God’s word in all its entirety and purity….”
    (September 28, 1978).
    It behooves the theologian to be free, but in that freedom must be openness to the truth and
    to the light that comes from faith and from fidelity to the Church (John Paul II, “Address at
    the Catholic University of America”: L’Osservatore Romano, Nov. 5, 1979).“Aware of the influence that their research and their statements have on catechetical
    instruction, theologians must take great care not to pass off questions that are matters of
    opinion or of discussion among experts as certain” (John Paul II, Ap. Ex. Catechesi
    Tradendae, Oct. 16, 1979, 61 (in More Post-Conciliar Documents, p. 800).
    “Those who are teachers of the faith should avoid bewildering people and using confusing
    language that may lead to ambiguity.
    “Theologians and those who work with them should teach the Christian people to
    understand well the events and situations of doctrinal confusion in which their Christian
    faith and vocation are placed under practical challenge.… The treatises of theologians
    should render the faith more lucid; theology is not merely to be consigned to weighty
    volumes and Summas (however valuable), but to be lived in a simple—I dare say
    —“popular” fashion” (John Paul II, “Address to Belgian Bishops”: L’Osservatore
    Romano, Oct. 25, 1982).
    A practical consequence of this attitude of humility is that the declarations of the
    Magisterium will always be received with appreciation and veneration.
    Also, if there is sincere humility, the duty of teaching the faith and giving clear orientations
    to the faithful cannot be seen as a limitation of freedom.
    Faithfulness to the Pope includes a clear and definite duty: that of knowing his thought,
    which he tells us in encyclicals or other documents. We have to do our part to help all
    Catholics pay attention to the teaching of the Holy Father, and bring their everyday
    behavior into line with it. This norm especially applies to theologians, who should always
    be faithful to the Magisterium of the Church, support it, and defend it with their science.
    Revelation is not a set of impersonal ideas; rather, it is the Creator’s word and invitation to
    mankind. Theologians must, therefore, pay special attention to his word, and give it the
    consideration due to the living God.
    Thus, theology implies an attitude of prayer, since prayer is the human word uttered in
    response to the word of God. Prayer is the most effective way to impel, inspire, and verify
    any understanding of the faith—intellectus fidei. A prayerful theologian imitates St. Mary,
    Mother of the Church, who kept divine revelation in her heart: “Mary kept all these things,
    pondering them in her heart” (Lk 2:19).
    The assent due to the different Magisterial declarations differs, depending on the type of
    documents involved or whether or not it is proposed in a definitive manner. “By divine and
    Catholic faith everything that is contained in the written word of God or in tradition, and
    that is proposed by the Church must be believed as a divinely revealed object of belief, be
    it in a solemn decree or in her ordinary, universal teaching.” (Very well known compilation
    of the defined truths of Henrico Denzinger, later expanded (32nd ed.) by Adolf
    Schoenmetzer: Enchiridion Symbolorum, Definitionum et Declarationum de Rebus Fidei et
    Morum [DS].DS 1507). Regarding the doctrinal and moral decisions of the ordinary Magisterium of the Roman
    Pontiff and of the Bishops in the exercise of their authentic Magisterium, external silence is
    not sufficient. One has “to adhere to it with a ready and respectful allegiance of mind.”(DS
    Limits of Theological Pluralism
    Theological pluralism does not refer to dogma (dogmatic pluralism) or to doctrines
    definitively settled by the Church. The truth revealed by God and taught by the Church as
    such is as immutable as God himself.
    In referring to the object of faith, “any meaning of the sacred dogmas that has once been
    declared by Holy Mother Church must always be retained”(DS 3020).
    Questions that are properly de fide are no longer subject to free interpretation; any opinion
    different from the sense defined by the Church would no longer be a valid theological
    opinion, but a heresy. “There must never be any deviation from that meaning on the
    specious ground of a more profound understanding” (Ibid).
    “The due freedom of theologians must always be limited by the word of God as it is
    faithfully preserved and expounded in the Church and taught and explained by the living
    Magisterium.” (Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Decl. Mysterium
    Ecclesiae, June 24, 1973 (in More Post-Conciliar Documents).
    Theologians should strive to go deeper into revelation and understand it better, confident
    that intellectual rigor and the guidance of the Holy Spirit will go hand in hand. They will
    never be led to the extreme of having to doubt or contradict what the Church had already
    conclusively defined with divine certitude.
    A traditional formula sums up the golden rule of theological research: Unity in what is
    necessary, freedom in what is debatable, charity in everything (In necessariis unitas, in
    dubiis libertas, in omnibus caritas).
    Role of the Laity
    The laity—part of the Church—also teaches, announcing Christ with their words, the
    testimony of their lives, and their speech. Thus, they teach their children, relatives, and
    friends “so that the power of the Gospel may shine out in daily family and social
    life.”(Second Vatican Council, LG, 35)
    Lay people with sufficient knowledge may impart catechetical formation, teach the sacred
    sciences, and collaborate in the means of social communication. In keeping with their
    knowledge, they also have the right and the duty to manifest to the pastors (and to the other
    faithful) their views on matters that concern the good of the Church, always respecting the
    integrity of faith and morals.(Code of Canon Law, 212, 229, 774, 776, 780, 823). It is their task to cultivate a properly informed conscience, and to impress the divine law on
    the affairs of the earthly city.… The lay people are called to participate actively in the
    entire life of the Church; not only are they to animate the world with the spirit of
    Christianity, but they are to be witnesses to Christ in all circumstances and at the very heart
    of the community of mankind (Second Vatican Council, GS, 43)
    This evangelization [by the lay people] … acquires a specific property and peculiar
    efficacy because it is accomplished in the ordinary circumstances of the world.
    [Married and family life have] a special importance in this prophetic office [of the Church].
    … In it, the married partners have their own proper vocation: they must be witnesses of
    faith and love of Christ to one another and to their children.…
    Therefore, even when occupied by temporal affairs, the laity can, and must, do valuable
    work for the evangelization of the world. (Second Vatican Council, LG, 35)

  20. Society of Judas says:

    Nobody can make of theology, as it were, a simple collection of his
    own personal ideas; everybody must be sure of being in close union with the mission of
    teaching the truth for which the Church is responsible” (John Paul II, Enc. Redemptor.

    The due freedom of theologians must always be limited by the word of God as it is
    faithfully preserved and expounded in the Church and taught and explained by the living
    Magisterium.” (Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Decl. Mysterium

    • childlike says:

      Therefore, a Priest must submit to the Magisterium of the Church. If he would say, he is not free..He is totally mistaken..It doesn’t mean that when you submit yourselves you are not free anymore because from the fact that you submit yourself, it is a free action..The will cannot be force by no one..

  21. Fr.Nori says:

    “But when either the Roman Pontiff or the Body of Bishops together with him defines a judgment, they pronounce it in accordance with Revelation itself, which all are obliged to abide by and be in conformity with, that is, the Revelation which as written or orally handed down is transmitted in its entirety through the legitimate succession of bishops and especially in care of the Roman Pontiff himself, and which under the guiding light of the Spirit of truth is religiously preserved and faithfully expounded in the Church.(45*) The Roman Pontiff and the bishops, in view of their office and the importance of the matter, by fitting means diligently strive to inquire properly into that revelation and to give apt expression to its contents;(46*) but a new public revelation they do not accept as pertaining to the divine deposit of faith”.(47*)

    The text clearly states that only the Pope is infallible in matters of faith and morals when he pronounce a dogma in communion with all the bishops “ex cathedra” ( “from the chair” ). Otherwise, the text will have a different interpretation not faithful to the original text mentioned above.
    I think the real issue here is: 1) Do we believe in the the Holy Spirit, deposit of faith,tradition and Church hierachy or it is just all theological speculations and each believer interprets the Magisterium of the Catholic Church as he/she pleases because of the relativistic and pluralistic society we are, compromising the solid truth and foundation of the the very core of the Gospel?

  22. Fr.Nori says:

    Lastly, as Fr. Cantalamessa rightly said during the Lenten retreat of the Roman Curia 2012: The Holy Spirit doesn’t “create new things” but “renews all things already created”. The Church infallible task is to affirm the truths of our faith already revealed ( deposits of faith ) by Jesus Christ nothing more and nothing less.


    ” Lo Spirito Santo non dice parole nuove, non crea nuovi sacramenti, nuove istituzioni, ma rinnova e vivifica perennemente le parole, i sacramenti e le istituzioni create da Gesù. Non fa cose nuove, ma fa nuove le cose”!

  23. Fr.Nori says:

    erratum: Advent Retreat 2012

  24. Tony says:

    What humbug nonsense the anti-TAbora creeps on this site are peddling!!! They demand that he “submit to the magisterium”. as far as i can tell, no member of the magisterium has come out to demand that Tabora submit to him or to the bishops or to the pope or to the church. these creeps think they can speak in the name of this or that bishop perhaps? or the whole CBCP? or Rome? why don’t they report him to the proper church authorities? are they afraid that such authorities will actually uphold Tabora in his freedom to comment on issues affecting church and society? so, lets here the anti-Tabora creeps here: put your money where your mouth is. initiate proceedings with the proper authorities!!!

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