Letters to the Editor

The Gift of Absolute Truth

Dear Editor:  While misinterpreting George Weigel’s remarks (Aug. 12), Eddie Shih describes calumnious clashes as serving a “divine purpose” as though truth is a dialectic between honest minds in disagreement. This assumption defies Church history and is offensive to respecting truth as an exclusive gift from God.

Fundamental to a Catholic, and therefore truthful, understanding of reality is that we sin and that we deceive ourselves about the nature of truth as a result of our sins. No one possesses a completely honest mind, and many among both religious and laity are and have been bad witnesses throughout the ages.

Truth accepted as a human invention rather than the eternal, unchanging mind of God is an atheistic concept whose long-term civilized effects have always produced submission to moral relativism, often in the form of mass murder. Weigel is prophetic to quote Merton about the venomous evil consequences of progressivism.

I once attended a speech by a progressive theologian who was in the news for his “courage” for dissenting from Church affirmations on the sacredness of life. I had hoped he might give clues of misgivings about his own position. To my heartbreak, it was quickly clear that he was intent on the total subversion of Catholic morality. He delighted the crowd by ridiculing the magisterial custodian of Catholic teaching. He showed no concern about the millions of children aborted every year and how this might invite God’s wrath.

Contrary to his publicists in the press, he said nothing particularly intelligent. His remarks were sophisticated only in the sense that they appealed to those already captivated by his rationalizations, who shared his indifference to the crushing of babies, and who see little need for repentance in their lives. In reality, he did not impart any sense that he, a priest, was serving Christ.

As another Catholic historian James Hitchcock has observed, progressive theologians regard themselves not as the Church’s missionaries to the world, but as the world’s missionaries to the Church. The Church renewing its call to witness means resisting not adapting to the evil tides of history.

Paul Kreig