To oppose the pope is to be outside the Church

People who oppose the pope put themselves outside the Church, says Cardinal Robert Sarah.

“The truth is that the Church is represented on earth by the vicar of Christ, that is by the pope.

“And whoever is against the pope is, ipso facto, outside the Church,”.

In 2014 Francis appointed Sarah as prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments.

He is often is portrayed as critical of Francis.

His cautious attitude toward welcoming Muslim migrants to Europe, his concern about the Church acting more like a social-service agency than a missionary church and his traditional approach to the liturgy have been cited as reasons for anti-Francis views.

In response, Sarah says those who portray him as opposing Francis are being used by the devil to help divide the Church.

In fact, his newly-released book, The Day is Now Far Spent, has a dedication that counters his opponents’ suspicions. It says:

“For Benedict XVI, peerless architect of the rebuilding of the Church.

“For Francis, faithful and devoted son of St. Ignatius.

“For the priests throughout the world in thanksgiving on the occasion of my golden jubilee of priesthood.”

Asked about the “truth” concerning his relationship with Francis, Sarah says:

“The truth is that many people write not to give witness to the truth, but to place people against one another, to damage human relationships.

“The truth doesn’t matter to them.”

He says it’s normal for the Church to experiences difficulties and divisions, but every Christian is called “to seek unity in Christ.”

“I would add that every pope is right for his time.

“Providence looks after us very well, you know.”

Sarah’s book is reportedly “filled with warnings about how a lack of faith, trust in God and adherence to tradition is threatening the Catholic Church, particularly in Europe and the wealthy West.”

He focuses on clerical sexual abuse and its effect where “the mystery of betrayal oozes from the walls of the Church.”

Reminding everyone about Jesus’ words to St. Peter, ‘You are Peter and on this rock I will build my church’, Sarah says:

“We have the assurance that this saying of Jesus is realised in what we call the infallibility of the Church. The spouse of Christ, headed by the successor of Peter, can live through crises and storms.”

Sarah suggests rediscovering “a bit of peace and benevolence” rather than arguing.

“Only faith, confidence in the magisterium and its continuity down through the centuries can give us unity.”

Catholics today must ask themselves if they truly believe the faith the Church always has taught, the faith of their ancestors, is still valid today.


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