A NEOCATECHUMENAL WAY EXPERIENCE
Some statements made by Neocatechumenals, Trevor and Pam Atkinson, 1 during Catecheses conducted at St Patrick's Catholic Church, in the Archdiocese of Melbourne: 2
"We [catechists] are angels."
"There will be signs and miracles."
"God loves you exactly as you are."
"The saint always announce their sin!"
"It is possible not to sin - if we believe."
"[Jesus Christ] didn't come to be a model."
"Good Friday is not the center of Christianity"
"We have been sent to this parish by the pope."
"The Catholic Church is not the raft of salvation."
"The Lord wants to form in this parish a Community."
"The Church is not called to make everyone Church."
"All these catecheses...have, in fact, been scrutinized...by
Cardinal Ratzinger's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Church (sic)."
"In Christianity there is no holy place - the people are the holy place."
The Catechical "messages are the sperm which goes into you and create new life."
"The Church...by acknowledging her sins and weaknesses...will..."
"The Church diverted from the course of the 'primitive Church' at the time
of Constantine, and did not get back on course until the Second Vatican Council."
Now, please view
SOME QUOTES FROM THE NEOCATECHUMENAL WAY FOUNDERS
- Appendix I
Not all of the statements are necessarily false or misleading, but some of them, I believe, are of concern.
Getting To Know The Neocatecumenals
Some few weeks prior to July 23, a couple of Neocatechumenists knocked on the presbytery rear door and introduced themselves to the parish priest, Fr. Roger Ryan. Their object was to introduce the Neocatechumenal Way into the parish, with the ultimate object of forming a group in the parish.
Fr. Roger, who is a compassionate, exemplary, devout and orthodox priest, announced to his parishioners that a mission would be commenced in the Parish on July 23, 2001, with the object of evangelising the parish, including lapsed and nominal Catholics - and even Christians of other faiths. A very laudable project, indeed!
Being a person who likes to know something about something of which I know nothing - I searched the Internet for information on the Neocatechumenal Way. A vast majority of websites were favourable towards the "Way" - as should be expected when, as the catechists claim, they have the been "sent by the Pope," and are supported by the present and past Archbishop of Melbourne and other episcopal dignitaries. Who would dare gainsay that support? or their words?
Some Websites Providing Information On The Neocatechumenal Way
In accordance with and pursuant to the main Catechist's statement that "The saint always announce their sin", the main catechist confessed to the audience that:
Notes From The Sessions
Thus forearmed with some background knowledge of the movement, I was able to listen to the presentations from the Catechists and to see that there was a recognisable "patter" - padded with some personal touchs. I made sure that I wrote as quickly as possible, referring to my tape recordings where necessary.
Printouts of my jottings 32 and photocopies of the all documents from the above-mentioned websites "B", "F to U", and "P - AB" inc. were given to Fr Ryan, my Parish Priest on Aug. 10. He urged me to continue my observations, and to report back to him. The second set of comments was given to him on Aug. 14. 33
I've Had Enough!!!
I advised Fr. Ryan that I would not be attending any further sessions. However, he prevailed on me to continue, and to take notes.
He asked me if I minded if my notes to date could be given to the Catechists. I replied, "no, I had no objection," and Fr. Roger gave the notes to them on Aug. 15 for their comments.
I attended the session on Aug. 16; the subject was "Reconciliation." After receiving the handout (Go to Appendix VIII - "Questionnaire On Reconciliation"), and before the discussion groups commenced, I left the hall, and did not attend further sessions.
The Sins and Weaknesses Of the Church
The handout: "Questionnaire On Reconciliation" included the following:
The Church does not manufacture forgiveness - this comes from God. By acknowledging her sins and weaknesses, the Church will make manifest God's strength, communicated through her."Well, there we have it - among other things, the Church is defined as being The Mystical Body of Christ, and, just as Jesus Christ is sinless so, too, is His Mystical Body. The Neocatechumenists seem not to worry about such matters - which, of course, probably were defined AFTER the Church deviated from the "primitive Church" at the time of Constantine.!!!
Christ was free from all sin, from original sin as well as from all personal sin. (De fide.)Credit - or Blame - Cardinal Ratzinger's Congregation
Furthermore, thanks to my tape-recorder I was able to record the following from Trevor - [Copy given to Fr. Ryan - Appendix IX - Notes On Aug. 15, 2001 Session]:
"All these catecheses we are giving are exactly as we received them. All have, in fact, been scrutinised by the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Church (sic.) - by Cardinal Ratzinger's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Church (sic.); and all are approved. We daren't change anything. We are solely passing on to you what we have given. But there is a conclusion here: if the people of the Church do not forgive, how will others believe in a God who forgives?"The answers might be found amongst these:
It is de fide Dogma of the Catholic Church 35 that:
1. "God, our Creator and Lord, can be known with certainty, by the natural light of reason from created things."How can a person believe in a God who forgives...? By listening to His Church, I suggest!
Certain it is that God desires the salvation of all men; and He gives to all men sufficient grace to attain salvation. Faith is a direct GIFT from God to whomsoever God chooses. God's mercy (and forgiveness) is NOT limited by finite human beings!
But what is missing from the Neocatechumenals equasion? God has other properties in addition to His infinite mercy...
The Four Last Things
How will the Neocatechumenals supply THIS vital aspect if it is lacking in their catecheses?
The Eschatology of the Individual Human Being 36A "Clayton's Reply" From The Neocatechumenals - "The Reply You Get When You Don't Get A Reply!!!" 37
On Saturday Aug 25, Fr. Roger gave me a package from the catechists in response to my notes. It comprised:
Speculatively, the "instruction" appears to be from the Catechist, Mr Trevor Atkinson. It reads as follows:
"My first reaction to the letter was to suggest that you might like to point out the following facts.Trevor Atkinson finally and anonymously attempted to bring on the "big guns" - the threat in Gamaliel 5:38-39 (although he does not cite the verse numbers.) Who would be so unwise as to pit himself against the Neocatechumenal movement, the Holy Spirit, the Pope and a whole army of ecclesiastics, and so on? Surely not even a fool who has been in conflict with Church authority in the past?
On the evening that I first met the Catechist, I advised him that I had been an adherent to the Society of St Pius X for about 23 years. This, of course, is public knowledge, and is not subject to the seal of Confession. It is interesting, however, that he should direct Fr. Ryan to bring up the subject:
"I say this because of the accusations laid against the neocatechumenal Way are levelled by those not in true communion with the Church. Now your personal experience must surely show you the danger of this. I therefore ask you, sincerely, to continue attending these catecheses but with a heart open to the Holy Spirit or, if that is too difficult, 47 to consider the words of Gamaliel in Acts Chapter 5 "If this enterprise, this movement of theirs, is of human origin it will break up of its own accord; but if it does in fact comes from God you will be unable to destroy them. Take care not to find yourselves fighting against God.' His advice was accepted." (sic.)
Fr. Enrico Zoffoli and Related Criticisms
Mr Aitkinson's "Instructions" passed these off as follows:
"The Passionist priest Father Enrico Zoffoli's claims were all investigated years ago and were found not to be valid...."
The answer, of course, is that time passes and so too may the prudence of individuals in the Neocatechumenal movement. Apart from the Pope in certain circumstances, individuals are NOT infallible; individuals, even in a good and holy enterprise, can fall into error. To point out error is the right and duty of EVERY Catholic. Perhaps the "whistleblower's" judgement is erroneous? There is no problem so long as the matter is left to the judgement of appropriate Church authority. In the meantime, is the expousal of perceived doctrinal error to be given free rein?
Perhaps it is time for another evaluation of the Neocatechumenal Way?
F. John Loughnan
September 19, 2001
Wednesday, June 18, 2014
A NEOCATECHUMENAL WAY EXPERIENCE
Copied here is an extremely thorough examination of the "Neocatechumenal Way Experience". Here is the link to the original.
Quoting The Neocatechumenals
Some Of The Melbourne Catechists Comments
More Of The Melbourne Catechists Comments
"Some Short Comments On Quotes From The Neocatechumenal Way Founders
The Catechists "Instructions" To Fr. Ryan
The Pope's Letter In Italian
The Alleged English Translation
Questionnaire On Reconciliation
Notes On Aug. 15, 2001 Session
A Description Of The Neo-Catechumal Liturgy
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