Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Insight Scoop - "Ecclesial Agnosticism"

Carl Oslon of Insight Scoop has a great article on, by the same title - Conscience, Authority, Obedience.

Unrestrained, the liberal stance stresses the individual and conscience to the point that authority is viewed with suspicion and seen as a threat. This removes the very possibility of conversion. By its own inner logic it tends toward a separation between Christ and the Church, holding at least implicitly that it is possible to be faithful to Christ without being faithful to his Church. It is even claimed that one can be a good Catholic without adhering to what the Church teaches.

Because the claim is seldom made outright, it might be helpful to see what this stance really is when analyzed. Let's give the name "ecclesial agnosticism" to the product of the analysis. It is a disincarnate ecclesiology. If agnostics don't deny God, they deny that he can be known, certainly that he became a man and can be identified with Jesus of Nazareth. Similarly, without denying the existence of the Church, without even denying that the Church possesses apostolic authority to teach, one can deny that this Church can be concretely identified, or that the conditions for infallible teaching are ever realized. But an unverifiable God cannot make demands on anyone, nor can a Church that possesses a charism of infallibility that can never be verified. The very condition of conversion, knowledge of absolute truth, becomes impossible to ascertain.

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