Fatima: Our Lady Got It SO Wrong…

Fatima: Our Lady Got It SO Wrong…

The following extract is taken from a website providing links to the much publicised  Filial Correction

A 25-page letter signed by 40 Catholic clergy and lay scholars was delivered to Pope Francis on August 11th. Since no answer was received from the Holy Father, it is being made public today, 24th September, Feast of Our Lady of Ransom and of Our Lady of Walsingham. The letter, which is open to new signatories, now has the names of 62 clergy and lay scholars from 20 countries, who also represent others lacking the necessary freedom of speech. It has a Latin title: ‘Correctio filialis de haeresibus propagatis’ (literally, ‘A filial correction concerning the propagation of heresies’). It states that the pope has, by his Apostolic Exhortation Amoris laetitia, and by other, related, words, deeds and omissions, effectively upheld 7 heretical positions about marriage, the moral life, and the reception of the sacraments, and has caused these heretical opinions to spread in the Catholic Church. These 7 heresies are expressed by the signatories in Latin, the official language of the Church.

We’ve discussed this ‘Correction’ on our blog elsewhere; I went on record as being in opposition to the idea of restricting the signatories to “lay scholars” and resolved not to sign it, despite being in possession of academic qualifications – two Degrees (Education and Theology) to be precise. Another blogger argued that I should sign for a number of reasons, so I allowed myself to be persuaded and submitted my signature, academic qualifications and humble status as Editor of Catholic Truth (Scotland).  I thought, heck if nothing else, they’ll want at least ONE signature from Bonnie Scotland.  I was wrong.  My signature did not make it and neither, interestingly, did the signature of the academic who coaxed me to sign in the first place.*   We’re regarded as being too outspoken, short on the diplomatic front, because we tend to call out those responsible for the dire state of the Church where we live and move and suffer the consequences of the modernist mayhem around us.  The general opinion of our friends seems to be that it is this outspokenness that has caused our signatures to fail the censorship process.  There are, you see, traditionalists and there are “traditionalists” –  the Pontius Pilate  School of Silent Complicity tends not to approve of the outspoken among us. Remember, some of those behind this Filial Correction kept mighty quiet during the reigns of both Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI, when the rest of us were raising grave concerns about the errors and scandals which abounded during those pontificates.  In fact, at least one of the signatories on the ‘Correction’ waited for an entire year into the pontificate of Papa Francis before raising a voice of mild concern.
* [Ed: quite some time later, our signatures were, in fact, added to the Filial Correction. So, I’m not sure if this is a case of I owe the organiser(s) an apology or “wonders will never cease”…]

Anyway, today, in discussion, one humble gentleman without a single Degree to his name, pointed out that when God sent His mother to earth with messages for mankind of one sort or another, including the Fatima prophecies which are coming true before our very eyes, He chose unlettered children, not “scholars”.   Indeed, Our Lady told Lucy of Fatima to learn to read… she didn’t wait until Lucy was able to read before appearing to her.  The same is true of other important revelations when Our Lady appeared to children. Bernadette of Lourdes is another very good example of how God seems to by-pass the clever-clogs among us, to communicate with the humble, simple and unlettered.  There has to be a reason.  OR…


Did Our Lady get it so wrong?  SHOULD she have appeared to some highly qualified scholars at Fatima, rather than 3 un-schooled, shepherd children who were never going to get anywhere in life, who wouldn’t make it to university? 

Comments (51)

  • Faith of Our Fathers

    Ed I don’t think that your really qualified to question Francis and if you don’t believe me just ask him . All kidding aside this of course has played into Francis’s hands . This Man is an Out and Out Narcissist he is not Gods spokesman on Earth anymore he is God . Probably the next thing he’ll come out with is that us peasants don’t need to go to confession as we do not know right from wrong. I personally believe that this man does not know scripture ( nor do any of his freeloading pan handlers ) he is like the most typical Of Pharisees of whom Christ spoke of . Of course Our Lady got it wrong as far as he’s concerned he’s the only one who ever gets things right. God Help Us as this man is now really on the road and is gathering great speed to destroy Our Church .

    September 30, 2017 at 7:22 pm
    • editor


      Sorry, but you’ve missed the point of this thread. It’s not ABOUT Pope Francis. If you read it again, carefully, you will see that I am asking if it takes someone with academic qualifications to sign a message of concern, whether about the Pope or anyone else. Manifestly, it does not.

      The point is made that Our Lady did not choose to appear to scholars with important messages, whether at Lourdes or Fatima.

      So, the question for YOU, FOOF, is, did Our Lady get it wrong. WHY did God not entrust the clever people on this earth with the crucial messages He sent via His Mother. Surely, if Christopher Ferrara or Dr Joseph Shaw or one of the other “important” (in the eyes of this world) people who signed the Correction, had asked the Pope to consecrate Russia, instead of entrusting the mission to a wee peasant girl who couldn’t even read, surely then, the Pope would have obeyed?

      So… DID Our Lady get it wrong by appearing to unlettered children instead of scholars?

      September 30, 2017 at 8:09 pm
      • Margaret USA

        To answer your question: NO.

        October 1, 2017 at 3:52 am
      • Lily

        Margaret USA,

        I agree. She did what God sent her to do, so couldn’t possible have got it wrong.

        October 2, 2017 at 1:59 pm
      • Janet Baker

        This is not a proper either/or question. The three little children delivered the message and their humble status commented upon it. St. Thomas Aquinas delivered his message, and his elevated status commented upon that as well. St. Dominic was a scholar, and Our Lady visited him. You chose a writing device, an opposition, but it serves rather to discredit the correction, and we don’t need that now.

        October 2, 2017 at 8:05 pm
      • editor


        Elsewhere on this thread, I’ve acknowledged the obvious truth that we have both scholars and humble un-lettered people in the Church, both counted among the saints in Heaven and living among us here on earth, so that’s a given.

        I have no interest in “discrediting” the Filial Correction. I believe, however, that I am entitled to my opinion about its presentation and the conduct of those charged with deciding who gets to sign it. I have no interest in being counted among the signatories, either, but I think it would be an indication that perhaps I hadn’t earned my academic qualifications if I didn’t question the rationale behind stating that only clerics and lay scholars would be permitted to sign, and then permitting several non-scholars to sign but refusing the signatures of those with academic qualifications. All very odd, don’t you think?

        To clarify your conclusion – may I ask what YOU think we need now?

        October 2, 2017 at 8:18 pm
  • James

    Your point is well taken.
    But we cannot pretend to forget that is took prodigious events to bring ecclesiastical and civil authorities to their knees. Spontaneous miraculous healings and solar phenomena touched briefly enough hearts of stone that the word, once out, could not be repressed.
    Should our Blessed Lord chose to provide the prodigious event of our perseverance in this effort as His means to conquer are we to deny Him our cooperation?
    Having myself worked for many years as a groundling in the upper reaches of higher education, I am not unfamiliar with the comportment you describe. They are a universe unto themselves, but they serve a purpose. We must be patient with the caste system as it survives. We know it is built on sand, and only to the degree it is not it shall it endure.
    All enterprise if fueled by prayer requires sacrifice. This slight is a small exercise in humility if offered up for the success of the “Correctio.”
    God reward you for all your effort and for this apostolate. I am edified.

    September 30, 2017 at 7:41 pm
    • editor


      I do not feel “slighted” in the.. er.. slightest 😀

      There’s nothing personal in this at all – certainly not on my part. Dr Shaw (whom I presume to be the moderator) is someone with whom I have exchanged friendly enough emails – especially when I made a point of emailing to congratulate him on his appearance on The Big Questions – a sometime BBC Sunday morning discussion programme – and I have Great-Nephews who enjoy his input into the LMS Summer School which they have attended a couple of times. I’ve emailed to thank him on their behalf, just to say how much they enjoyed the week. So, there’s nothing personal, no personal offence taken by me – be assured.

      If you recall, well before I was aware that my signature had been rejected, I said on this here blog that I would not submit my signature precisely because I think it is very wrong to conduct something like this in what amounts to a snobbish manner. Who cares if 62 people with a Degree or two are concerned about the Pope – MILLIONS of ordinary Catholics are just as concerned (or would be, if they were properly formed in the Faith) so they, too, should have been encouraged to read the document (or at least the summary) and then, in the realisation of just how serious things are, encouraged to sign. NOBODY’S signature should have been rejected.

      As I say, there’s no “slight” – at least, none taken by me, but I refuse to make a display of false humility by pretending that it’s all OK – it’s NOT OK to debar signatures on the basis that you dislike this or that apostolate, disapprove of this or that individual person or organisation. I’d be very surprised to find any reasonably minded Catholic thinking otherwise.

      So far, I read online that this Filial Correction is being hailed as a huge success just because it’s being reported – an odd yardstick, surely. Let’s wait to see if any of the identified heresies is recanted. THAT is the only meaningful measure of success for this, or any similar, enterprise.

      September 30, 2017 at 8:24 pm
  • Sentire Cum Ecclesia

    Well, of course, one need not be a scholar to know one’s faith, and often the deeper faith is found among the ordinary people. In fact as we know, God’s preference, when confiding a message to humanity, is for the lowly and ordinary people. I don’t think that the authors of the Filial Correction intend to dispute this, though. I am happy if they can use whatever influence they possess, which can be helpful (think of the Agatha Christie Indult.).

    There’s nothing to stop us concerned ordinary Catholics (I am a teacher, but I don’t think that really counts!) from writing our own petition to Pope Francis, a petition from concerned Catholics, whether scholars or not. I suppose the scholar thing merely adds a bit of weight and influence. It is a human endeavour which is important in its own way, but I’m sure the signatories would admit to a man (or a woman!) that is the prayer and sacrifice of all Catholics which will win the day.

    September 30, 2017 at 10:19 pm
    • Michaela

      Sentire Cum Ecclesia,

      I’m afraid those of us who know something of the organiser behind this Filial Correction would beg to differ with your very charitable analysis! There definitely is snobbery involved, IMHO, no question about it.

      As far as I know, Agatha Christi was just one of several well known celebrity types who signed a letter asking for the Traditional Mass to be preserved after the Council, but it came to nothing. Only when Archbishop Lefebvre consecrated his bishops, did Pope John Paul II rush out his excommunication notice and ask the bishops to provide the old Mass “generously” – which they never did, anyway! That’s my understanding of what happened, but I do know that the indult Mass was never generously provided. Few and far between, they were, and always in the furthest parts of a city or miles out of the way.

      The scholars may have added a bit of weight, as you say, but so what. Is it possible that they would have refused to sign if unimportant people were permitted to sign as well? Why not have both, to build up the numbers. Look at the thousands who signed the 1P5 petition – I’d say that’s much more likely to make Francis think twice, than 62 supposed scholars – several of them had no academic credentials against their names at all.

      September 30, 2017 at 11:08 pm
      • Sentire Cum Ecclesia

        The reason, of course, God picks humble people in whom to confide a message is not just to rebuke the proud of the earth, but also to convince mankind more surely that it is He who speaks. If the contrast between the sublimity of the message and the simplicity of the messenger is pronounced, it’s all the more evident that the mystic soul is genuine. It does not mean that the learned have not some role also- in fact as we know, the teaching Church must confirm that a mystic is genuine. (It’s true that the teaching Church is clerical, not lay, but it is quite natural that a professor should have more clout in matters of papal criticism than for example, the likes of yours truly, a primary teacher. It does not make the professor infallible, of course.)

        I looked up the list of original signatories (the list has grown since) and the vast majority were Professors as well as clerics. Very highly qualified professors do have a certain prestige in areas of thought and I think that it is entirely in order to have a petition from the more learned members of society. It’s not necessarily proud- of course I don’t know the people personally but I would have thought it out of order to talk about their motivations based on personal contact, anyway. A blog is for remarking on public events, not speculation on personal motivations.

        Well, yes, why not organise a petition of ordinary Catholics as well? I’m sure it could be done, if someone had the time and interest. I have interest but alas not the time at present, although I would certainly work to pass on such a petition.


        October 1, 2017 at 12:56 pm
      • Heloisa

        The petition of ordinary Catholics you want is already available to sign at https://www.change.org/p/petition-support-by-the-catholic-laity-for-the-filial-correction-of-pope-francis Only takes a couple of seconds to sign!

        October 4, 2017 at 3:38 pm
      • Heloisa

        Sorry, should have put Dear Sentire Cum Ecclesia

        Editor; Is there any way of editing one’s posts on this forum?

        October 4, 2017 at 3:39 pm
    • Margaret USA

      The “Agatha Christie Indult”???? I never heard of such a thing!

      October 1, 2017 at 3:55 am
      • Lily

        Margaret USA,

        It wasn’t called the Agatha Christi indult – she was just one of several famous people who signed a letter asking for the Latin Mass to be allowed after the new Mass came in.

        October 2, 2017 at 2:00 pm
  • Athanasius


    I agree with you entirely. The present crisis is one that affects all Catholics, and all Catholics, from the highest to the lowest, have both the right and the duty to speak out when the Faith is endangered. Yes, even to the Pope himself.

    Sadly, as history testifies in such crisis, the many remain silent and defence of the Faith falls to the few, who usually suffer persecution for their efforts.

    September 30, 2017 at 10:52 pm
  • Lionel

    As soon as Pope Francis was elected, he set the tone!!! I did not want to believe it…
    Remember, at that time he told the cardinals: “you will regret having elected me”; that is clear, is not it?
    It simply completes the work of destruction of his post-conciliar predecessors.
    This is a long-term premeditated project that probably dates back to the Reign of Paul VI: “we also, we more than anyone else, have the cult of man” (Closing address at the Second Vatican Council on the 7th December 1965).

    September 30, 2017 at 10:58 pm
    • crofterlady

      Lionel, could you provide the complete quote as per your last sentence? Also, a clickable source would be helpful. Thanks.

      October 1, 2017 at 2:03 pm
      • Lionel

        Here it is, Crofterlady:

        There are variations according to the numerous translations:
        12 paragraph, last sentance :”Secular humanism, revealing itself in its horrible anti-clerical reality has, in a certain sense, defied the council. The religion of the God who became man has met the religion (for such it is) of man who makes himself God. And what happened? Was there a clash, a battle, a condemnation? There could have been, but there was none. The old story of the Samaritan has been the model of the spirituality of the council. A feeling of boundless sympathy has permeated the whole of it. The attention of our council has been absorbed by the discovery of human needs (and these needs grow in proportion to the greatness which the son of the earth claims for himself). But we call upon those who term themselves modern humanists, and who have renounced the transcendent value of the highest realities, to give the council credit at least for one quality and to recognize our own new type of humanism: we, too, in fact, we more than any others, honor mankind”.

        F) “Nous aussi, plus que quiconque, nous avons le culte de l’homme”.
        IT) “Anche noi, noi più di tutti, siamo i cultori dell’uomo”.

        October 1, 2017 at 10:02 pm
  • Lionel

    He simply completes…

    September 30, 2017 at 11:19 pm
    • crofterlady

      Lionel, excuse my ignorance but WHO completes WHAT?

      October 1, 2017 at 4:49 pm
      • Lionel

        Excuse me, I made a mistake, I wrote: “IT simply completes the work of destruction…” instead of “HE simply completes the work of destruction…” as it was refering to the Pope.
        I am sorry.
        Kind regard LD

        October 1, 2017 at 10:14 pm
      • crofterlady

        Excellent reply, thank you.

        October 1, 2017 at 10:33 pm
  • Theresa Rose

    Saint John Vianney comes to my mind, in that he struggled with his studies in order to become a priest. Latin was required for his many studies and it was not an easy matter for him. His holiness and humbleness was know far beyond Ars. It is no wonder that he his the patron saint of priests.

    Academic qualifications are a part of life and often necessary, for a example, if I needed surgery I would expect a qualified and competent surgeon to do the necessary. But not everyone is or has an academic brain. Who is to say that Our Lady was wrong in appearing to the 3 children at Fatima. What would an academic do or say about the Third Secret (that we don’t really know about), but relates to the Consecration of Russia?

    September 30, 2017 at 11:30 pm
  • Athanasius

    It is quite clear that heaven chooses children because of their innocence and humility. Scholars often fall very short on the latter at least. There a re very few with the great mind of St. Thomas Aquinas that has a great humility to match. Vatican II and its aftermath is a disaster of the scholars and their pride.

    September 30, 2017 at 11:59 pm
    • Prognosticum


      You touch upon a matter which should be of increasingly concern to all of us, i.e. the throwing over of humility in the Church of our time.

      Humility has long been seen in Catholic eyes as an aspect of the cardinal virtue of temperance. Spiritual masters throughout the ages have stressed the need for humility as the first and most important step in any journey of conversion and drawing near to God. Pride, as one non-Catholic Christian writer once remarked, is the ‘anti-God’ state and what turned the devil into the devil.

      The media, of which the internet and social media are now the most dominant aspect, is fast turning us into proud fools as we aspire to be actors on the digital stage. Sad to say, the reigning Pontiff does not seem to be immune from this.

      October 1, 2017 at 5:24 am
  • Athanasius


    I agree, and I apologise for the grammar in my previous post. My pride cannot abide me writing like one of the great unwashed!! Oh well, it was late and I was in a hurry.

    Joking aside, pride is at the heart of everything today. We all have to combat that insidious vice and that can only be done by grace, and grace comes from prayer. In the Church in particular, one of the great tragedies that has blinded many of the priest/theologians is that they failed to stay close to the tabernacle. I would rather have one uneducated saintly priest than a thousand intellectual clerical peacocks.

    October 1, 2017 at 12:00 pm
  • Deacon Augustine

    “I was wrong. My signature did not make it and neither, interestingly, did the signature of the academic who coaxed me to sign in the first place.”

    Dearest editor, if that be me to whom you are referring, I don’t think I’ve ever been accused of being an “academic” before. If so, thank you for the “compliment” and sorry for any grief the matter has occasioned you. I do believe though that rather than any case of ill-will, as with many things in the Church of God, it is far more likely to be sheer ineptitude. I really don’t think the “organisers” had any idea how much interest this initiative would provoke.

    As to your question: “Did Our Lady get it so wrong?”, the short answer is “No”. Rather her choice of “visionaries” is perfectly consistent with Scriptural precedent. One need only think of the reluctant chap with the Egyptian name (Moses), the unlikely (in human terms) shepherd boy who became King David and Our Lord’s choice of His Apostles to know that this is so.

    In first century Israel a Jewish boy would spend the years between age 6 and 14 learning the Torah at the feet of a Rabbi. At the age of 14, if the Rabbi thought he made a promising disciple he would say: “Come, follow me.” If he was a poor learner, the Rabbi would say: “Now is the time for you to learn the trade of your father.” It is notable that Our Lord Himself, St Peter, St Andrew. St James and St John were all men who had gone on to learn the trade of their fathers. None of them had made the grade in terms of “religious success” according to the accepted standards of the time. And yet they changed the world forever.

    Our Lady knew exactly what she was doing, and she hasn’t finished her work yet.

    October 1, 2017 at 5:31 pm
    • Athanasius

      Deacon Augustine

      I respectfully beg to differ. Our Lord is God and He knows all things. He is the very fount of wisdom and knowledge, author of the Sacred Scriptures. How many times did Our Lord leave the Pharisees and doctors of the law speechless with questions and answers that they simply could not compete with, questions such as “If Christ is David’s son, then how is it that David calls him Lord…,etc.?”

      No, I am quite certain that Our Lord would have left any Rabbi astounded by His knowledge, even at 12 years of age, as He did at the time when Our Lady found Him in the Temple listening to the doctors and asking them questions.

      October 1, 2017 at 5:47 pm
      • Deacon Augustine

        Athanasius, I agree with everything you have said about Our Lord. But what do proud men do, how do they react to upstart prodigies when they leave them speechless, astounded and challenge their accepted view of the world? Surely the rejection of Our Lord by the Pharisees and doctors of the law is what lay behind their plot to kill Him?

        October 1, 2017 at 6:25 pm
      • editor

        Deacon Augustine,

        Our Lord was becoming too popular with the people, who were drawn by the way He taught with authority (“and not like their own Scribes”) AND by His miracles. That’s my recollection of why they plotted to kill Him, and when I get a minute, I’ll check my bible to see if I’ve forgotten any particular (additional) incident.

        October 1, 2017 at 6:57 pm
      • Deacon Augustine


        I would say “all of the above” and more. It didn’t help that He rejected their teaching on divorce (Matt 19,1-9)., and the seven curses He pronounced against them wouldn’t have won Him the Mr Popularity contest either. (Matt 23). Most of His parables had the Scribes and Pharisees in His sights too.

        October 1, 2017 at 7:14 pm
      • Athanasius

        Deacon Augustine

        Agreed. Maybe I misunderstood, I thought the import of your comment was that Our Lord was advised to work for his (foster) father because he was not considered intelligent enough by the teachers of the law to progress religiously. My apologies for the misunderstanding.

        October 1, 2017 at 9:04 pm
    • editor

      Deacon Augustine,

      You have a Degree which = “academic” (live with it!)

      As for “any grief the matter has occasioned you”…

      I really am lost for words. Way up at the top of this short thread (only 20 comments at time of this writing, so not difficult to find!) I explained to James that I took no “slight” at the exclusion of my signature, and I assured him that there was nothing of any personal offence in my objection to the elitist nature of this “Correction”.

      Let me try one more time.

      I think a Filial Correction is long overdue. I would want to support any such venture. I simply do not like the fact that it has been restricted to “lay scholars” and clerics. I just do not like that modus operandi. I HAVE academic qualifications myself, so there is no question of the “green-eyed” monster or any other base motive. I just think the document should have been open to signatures from ALL concerned Catholics, academic or not. I think that is a matter of natural justice and would have, incidentally, made it much more powerful.

      I really can’t make my meaning any more clear.

      October 1, 2017 at 6:22 pm
      • Deacon Augustine

        editor, I fully understand that you have taken no personal offence. What I meant by “grief” was the amount of time and bandwidth this subject has now taken up.

        If the world ran to rights we should all be sitting back with our popcorn watching the cardinals and bishops step up to the plate to sort this whole mess out. There should not be any need for the lower clergy and laity to get involved with anything like this at all whether they are academic or not.

        October 1, 2017 at 6:31 pm
      • editor

        Fair enough, Deacon Augustine – sorry I misinterpreted your “grief” (so to speak!)

        To add to the nonsense of it all, I have just received the following email from the organisers, addressed to me, personally, degrees appended:

        Thank you for supporting the Correctio. In union of prayers

        V. R.

        Is there any point, I asked myself, in replying to ask whatever happened to my signature, why was it not included, OR I went on to say, just forget it – no point.

        And before you say (to yourself!) she’s nuts, read this… 😀


        October 1, 2017 at 6:48 pm
      • Deacon Augustine


        October 1, 2017 at 6:55 pm
      • Heloisa

        Editor: Thank you SO much for this link. It proves what I already know….I’m a stupendous GENIUS!!!!! Or just a stupid one.

        October 4, 2017 at 3:45 pm
  • RCAVictor

    Just to post the obvious in answer to Editor’s question:

    James 4:6: “God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.”

    Are those who hold positions in academia proud? Is the Pope Catholic? (Well, hmmmm…..) I think it is very interesting that (a) as I posted before, the vast majority of these signatories have been asleep at the switch of vigilance lo these many Modernist years; (b) none of these signatories actually have the power to “correct” the Pope, so the document is at least grossly mis-named by half. Filial? Fine. Correction? Sorry, boys and girls, you are not a Council of Cardinals, which alone has the authority to try a Pope, attempt to correct him, and convict him of heresy if he is found guilty and pertinaciously continues in his errors. And thus, depose him.

    And just to make the obvious comparison, if Our Lady got it wrong, then so did Our Lord, when He chose to be born in the lowliest of circumstances, whose royal pedigree was entirely hidden, and who lived his entire life in the same humble manner….without credentials….until he was arrested and executed by those who were……credentialed!

    October 1, 2017 at 8:05 pm
    • editor

      RCA Victor,

      As you will know if you read my conversation with myself above 😀 I have been deliberating whether or not to reply to the email I received from the mysterious “V.R.”, growing less inclined to do so by the nano-second. Then saw your comment and decided to respond. Below, my response – very polite, compared to what I was saying to myself… (say nothing – without going into the details, in certain circles I’d be considered a genius just because I talk to myself…)


      Dear “V.R”

      Perhaps you would explain why my signature was not included in the ‘Filial Correction’? Although, as one of our bloggers points out, * none of us has the authority to actually “correct” the Pope, I did sign with my two academic Degrees, and my position as Editor of a Catholic publication in Scotland. I see other signatures with less qualification.

      Thus, purely as a matter of interest, I would be grateful if you would let me know why my signature was considered less useful or “worthy” of inclusion, than, for example, a former President of Una Voce, who didn’t have a certificate to his name and another listed as a “writer and essayist”…

      God bless
      SIGNED – with the full works, yet again 😀

      * I placed a link to this thread at that point.

      Thinking of Fatima, in this centenary year, I’ve read somewhere that people who pray to the little boy seer, Francisco, say that they have received great gifts of grace. Worth a try!

      October 1, 2017 at 9:36 pm
    • Prognosticum

      Sorry, but you are seriously mistaken. The evangelical duty of fraternal correction which obliges every Catholic also extends to the correction of priests, bishops and even the Pope. What they cannot do is censure him, but that is quite a different matter.

      As to your last paragraph, I must dispute that Our Lord was born in the lowliest of circumstances (unless you mean that, for God, the incarnation is about as lowly as it can get). When it is said that St. Joseph was a carpenter, the Greek word could equally mean a highly skilled craftsman in wood or the more prestigious metal, perhaps running a workshop with several employees, and sources record a shortage of skilled artisans at the time of Jesus. Certainly one very eminent scholar has stated that the terms ‘carpenter’ and ‘son of a carpenter’ are used in the Jewish Talmud to signify a very learned man, and he goes on to suggest that a description of Joseph as ‘naggar’ (a carpenter) could indicate that he was considered wise and highly literate in the Torah.

      In matters of biblical exegesis, beware simplistic translations!

      October 2, 2017 at 2:44 am
      • RCAVictor


        Thank you for the comment on fraternal correction, but I would like to point out that this latest document is a filial correction, not a fraternal one. Isn’t that different?

        Also, I am not sure what the social status of St. Joseph has to do with the lowly circumstances in which Our Lord was born. I was referring to His birth in a cave/stable. Would you not agree that such is the lowliest of circumstances, esp. for the King of the Universe?

        October 2, 2017 at 3:23 am
      • editor


        “What they cannot do is censure him”

        And I think that’s why RCA Victor put “correct” in inverted commas. As it stands, the Filial Correction is doing no more than we are permitted in Canon Law, expressing our concerns, and thus correcting the errors/heresies of this Pope. We don’t have the authority to tell him to take a hike. And for the record, none of us is saying that academics/scholars may not or should not sign. All that any of us has ever said here is that the Correction should not have been restricted to that particular group. Smacks of snobbishness. And if the (you are correct) strict definition of an academic as someone who teaches in a university had been applied to this Correction, then the total number of signatures would not have come close to the 62 which they eventually published.

        I think that when we speak of Our Lord being born in the lowliest of circumstances, we think of the fact that Our Lady and St Joseph were forced to accept the lowliest of lodgings for the birth, the room in a home given over to the housing of animals (no central hearing in those days!)

        And the surprise of the crowds at the wisdom of Jesus’ teaching is clear: “Is this not the carpenter’s son? Is not his mother called Mary” One really doesn’t expect this much knowledge to come from that family!

        As for the claim that carpentry paid well in the first century – well, that may be so but doesn’t meant that the Holy Family were well-to-do, and Scripture scholars are on dangerous ground when they seek to apply a generalisation to a particular situation, without some substantial justification; just as it would be foolish today to encourage a young person to launch an airline as a sure way of getting rich quick (Monarch just gone into administration and Ryanair in disarray for weeks now) so it is a mistake to go beyond what is given in the Scriptures to draw definitive conclusions. I can’t think of a single verse in the New Testament to give credence to the claim that Jesus was not born into lowly or humble circumstances. Please quote something that I may have missed, if I’m wrong on this.

        Absent any such evidence, however, given that God could have planned the coming of Christ into this world as an obviously wealthy person of some social standing and influence and ensured that He was born in noble surroundings but chose not to do so, is a matter surely of great significance. There’s certainly nothing in the Gospels to my knowledge, to indicate that the Holy Family enjoyed either material wealth or social standing; those few quotes available indicate the opposite, as the surprise of the crowds quoted above indicates. And although I don’t have time to dig out quotes from the early Church Fathers about the humble status of the Holy Family, we do have our Lord’s own insistence that His Kingdom is not of this world.

        Finally, I think we always need to beware of taking, as infallible, the work of Scripture scholars. There are all sorts of “traditions”, for example, about St Joseph which may or may not be authentic. Having been fed on the Rudolph Bultmann Baloney, I’m more inclined to believe in Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer than many, if not most, of the alleged “Scripture scholars”.

        October 2, 2017 at 10:18 am
  • John R

    I signed the correctio also. I could not care less whether my signature was included or not. I certainly did not put my academic qualifications after my name although I do have a couple but neither of them are of any theological bearing so there was no point in including them. The point is that I signed. God knows and that is all that matters as far as I am concerned.

    October 1, 2017 at 11:45 pm
    • Heloisa

      “God knows and that is all that matters as far as I am concerned.”

      I think we all need to keep this in uppermost in our minds at present – or we might do nothing because, humanly speaking, any action seems pointless.

      October 5, 2017 at 2:53 pm
  • Prognosticum

    I cannot agree with the generalization that academics are proud. (Actually, if I were to indicate a particular group in society which I personally have found to suffer from this vice in a consistent way, it would be the medical profession, although I have also modest doctors and nurses in my ken.) Generalizations are by their very nature, well, generalizations, and are better avoided.

    What is an academic? Normally it is someone teaching and/or researching in a university or some such institution, but I am personally acquainted with private scholars and intellectuals who are certainly of that level while not associated with any one university. I can understand the organizers of the petitition thinking that recognised academics in theology and/or philosophy would lend more weight to their correction in as much as they are better placed to understand the arguments at stake (which are complex, perhaps more than they seem at first sight) but I equally understand that the thing might also have been widened out (as in fact it was to a certain extent with the inclusion of bishops) to include other sectors of the life of the Church. There was, however, little point in a internet free for all which yet might have a place within a different type of strategy.

    God, it is true, sometimes chooses simple people in His interaction with mankind. The Fatima children are certainly a case in point. But he also chose St. Paul for a mission which was hardly secondary, and who in their right mind would seriously dispute that the Church would have been a poorer place without the likes of St. Justin Martyr, St. Ireneus of Lyon, St. Augustine of Hippo, St. Thomas Aquinas, or even, closer to our own day, a Chesterton or a von Hildebrand.

    October 2, 2017 at 2:07 am
    • editor


      I agree that we cannot generalise that all academics are “proud” – I’m sure no-one here is seriously suggesting that to be the case.

      I also agree, of course, that we must value the work of the great academic minds within the Church and the list you provide of giants such as St Thomas Aquinas is proof positive of the necessity of having a strong body of Catholic intellectuals. No right thinking person would deny that.

      At the risk of now being utterly boring on the topic, I repeat that I, for one, have never suggested that those with academic qualifications and standing in the Catholic world should be banned from signing. My opinion is simply that the Correction should have been open to all who wished to sign, encouraged, perhaps to add something of their own status (Mrs Jean Bloggs, mother of x number of children) to show the widespread concern within the Church. The – dare I say it – diversity 😀 of concern across the Catholic world

      The Correction, as it has been presented, strikes me as revealing more a “worldly” than a “Catholic” mentality, albeit for the best of reasons – I make no definitive judgment on the motivation of the producer(s).

      And, of course, I wish it every success.The only true success, however, would be if the Pope recants the heresies identified by the producers of the ‘Filial Correction’. So, I, for one, ain’t holding my breath.

      PS – a question for you, Prognosticum. Given that there are signatures of people with no academic qualifications on the Filial Correction, what possible reason could there be for the refusal to publish my signature, and that of Deacon Augustine who also has academic qualifications? Both of us are unpopular due to being outspoken about the crisis, but neither of us has had the “temerity” to list actual heresies and tell the pope to withdraw them, so what possible reason can there be to justify refusing to include our signatures? I’d be very interested to learn what you think about this since it is the one thing upon which you have not picked up…

      October 2, 2017 at 10:39 am
  • RCAVictor


    Regarding your email to “V.R.,” I wonder if they would respond to a request to tell us, in more general terms rather than “Why wasn’t I included,” exactly what qualifications were established in order for a name to be included on the list. And, as well, why those qualifications were selected.

    [Sidebar: if the organizers thought said qualifications, whatever they were, would make an impression on the Pope, they were obviously mistaken!]

    From the comments thus far, it would seem that these qualifications consist of whoever was well-known and respected by the organizers of the “correction.”

    October 2, 2017 at 2:00 pm
    • Lily

      RCA Victor,

      “From the comments thus far, it would seem that these qualifications consist of whoever was well-known and respected by the organizers of the “correction.”

      I couldn’t agree more. That is all it was. I think the organisers were naïve enough to think that if they sent a document signed by some “impressive” people, in their estimation, the Pope would buckle and hold up his hands in surrender, LOL!

      October 2, 2017 at 2:03 pm
      • RCAVictor


        Yep, the only way Francis would have paid attention to this “correction” is if the signatories were all climate change and open border advocates, atheists, Lutherans, Muslims, Jews, and notorious homosexuals! Oh and let’s not forget transgenders….

        October 2, 2017 at 2:23 pm
  • editor

    The SSPX news bulletin today has a short report saying the Pope has reacted to the Filial Correction. Click here to read more…

    October 5, 2017 at 8:34 am

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