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E-mail from Heaven: Is your computer on?

Heresy and dissent destroy faith and endanger souls. But heretics often speak well and bear “credentials” that fool people. Dissenting theologians claim to speak for the sensus fidelium as they toss out magisterial teachings. Don’t be misled.

Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith: “Among the vocations awakened…by the Spirit in the Church is that of the theologian. His role is to pursue…an ever deeper understanding of the Word of God found in the inspired Scriptures and handed on by the living Tradition of the Church…in communion with the Magisterium which has been charged with the responsibility of preserving the deposit of faith….Since the object of Theology is the Truth which is the living God and His plan for salvation revealed in Jesus Christ, the theologian is called to deepen his own life of faith and continuously unite his scientific research with prayer. In this way, he will become more open to the ‘supernatural sense of faith’ upon which he depends, and it will appear to him as a sure rule for guiding his reflections and helping him assess the correctness of his conclusions….The freedom of the act of faith cannot justify a right to dissent….Argumentation appealing to the obligation to follow one’s own conscience cannot legitimate dissent. This is true, first of all, because conscience illumines the practical judgment about a decision to make, while here we are concerned with the truth of a doctrinal pronouncement. This is furthermore the case because while the theologian, like every believer, must follow his conscience, he is also obliged to form it. Conscience is not an independent and infallible faculty. It is an act of moral judgment regarding a responsible choice. A right conscience is one duly illumined by faith and by the objective moral law and it presupposes, as well, the uprightness of the will in the pursuit of the true good….Setting up a supreme magisterium of conscience in opposition to the magisterium of the Church means adopting a principle of free examination incompatible with the economy of Revelation and its transmission in the Church….Polling public opinion to determine the proper thing to think or do, opposing the Magisterium by exerting the pressure of public opinion, making the excuse of a ‘consensus’ among theologians, maintaining that the theologian is the prophetical spokesman of a ‘base’ or autonomous community which would be the source of all trught, all this indicates a grave loss of the sens of truth and of the sense of the Church.” From Instruction on the Ecclesial Vocation of the Theologian.

St. Irenaeus: "These men falsify the oracles of God, and prove themselves evil interpreters of the good Word of revelation. They also overthrow the faith of many, by drawing them away, under a pretence of [superior] knowledge, from Him who rounded and adorned the universe; as if, forsooth, they had something more excellent and sublime to reveal, than that God who created the heaven and the earth, and all things that are therein. By means of specious and plausible words, they cunningly allure the simple-minded…while they initiate them into their blasphemous and impious opinions…and these simple ones are unable…to distinguish falsehood from truth." From Against All Heresies

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