Joseph Ratzinger on Conscience and Papal Authority

“Over the Pope as expression of the binding claim of ecclesiastical authority, there stands one’s own conscience which must be obeyed before all else, even if necessary against the requirement of ecclesiastical authority [emphasis added]. This emphasis on the individual, whose conscience confronts him with a supreme and ultimate tribunal, and one which in the last resort is beyond the claim of external social groups, even the official Church, also establishes a principle in opposition to increasing totalitarianism.”

Joseph Ratzinger in: Commentary on the Documents of Vatican II ,Vol. V., pg. 134 (Ed) H. Vorgrimler, New York, Herder and Herder, 1967.

Thoughts for the Day

The Power of Free Will

“Many liberal activist movements are trapped by their cynicism. It’s so easy, too easy to demonize the other side…

“Even in the church, many have no positive vision forward so they lead the charge backward or against. But note that Jesus’ concept of ‘the Reign of God’ is totally positive — not fear-based or against any individual, group, sin or problem…

…only when we get ourselves out of the way can we [appropriately] judge anyone else and take on the powers that be with righteous indignation.

from Everything Belongs (pp 107-111), by Richard Rohr, O.F.M.