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Tuesday, April 20, 2010


Charles E Flynn

I was surprised to see Kung repeat the erroneous claim about condoms and AIDS in Africa, which suggests he has not read this article:

Years ago, I took the bus to the Providence College library because they subscribed to the magazine "Communio: International Catholic Review", which had an article I really wanted to see. In looking through back issues of the magazine, I came across a letter from Cardinal Ratzinger (one of Communio's founders) that revealed that the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith had grown tired of being ignored by Prof. Kung when he was summoned to Rome to defend his views. The letter suggested that Cardinal Ratzinger was reluctant to reveal what had been going on, but could stand it no longer. If I recall correctly, whenever he was summoned to Rome, Kung would send one of the following replies:

1. I am writing a book.

2. It is mid-semester.

3. I am on vacation.


"Kung's statement shows just how pathetically low this megalomaniac will go to attack a man who is Mozart to Kung's Limp Bizkit."


I am shocked and offended that you would dare to besmirch the wonderful name and reputation of such a great contributor to our society.

I believe an apology is in Limp Bizkit.


I don't think Pope Benedict sees his meeting with Kung as purgatory. He really is a scholar and values the opinion of other scholars. Even if he does not often agree wityh them. Besides, Kung and Ratzinger go way back. They are both engaging and interesting people. I have no doubt Pope Benedict would love to spend more time with Kung. Remember Vatican II says we can learn about God from anybody. That includes atheists, moslems, the mentally disabled, and even Catholic theologians.


When I hear his name I think, "You would think the fact that Joseph Ratzinger is pope and he is considered a dissident would be enough to quell his kvetching."

Steve Cianca

Carl, I appreciate your exasperation with Herr Kung, but he is not worth the effort of a response. He is a has-been theologian whose 15 minutes of fame came and went decades ago. His voluminous semi-heretical works are to genuine scholarship what masturbation is to marital intimacy. If we can learn anything from Hans the Heretic, it is that the siren song of the intellectually fashionable is an ever present danger to Christians (shades of Arius indeed!).

Ed Peters

Randy's basically wrong, but Steve's basically right.

Stephen  Sparrow

Kung has to a bit on the dim side if he thinks Africans can be helped with encouragement to use condoms. He simply does not understand the the problems in 3rd world Africa stem from the low status of women - and he wants that status to sink even lower ???


I second that. Kung's name was in fashion in the late 70s when I grew up. My Methodist pastors all had his book, "On Being a Christian," on their shelves. But since then, as Vatican II has faded, postmodernism has risen, and the culture has already shifted to and past what Kung and the mainliners long advocated, I can't think of anyone under forty who even really knows who he is. Maybe in Europe it is different. He reminds me of the NYT... you know it still publishes, but who other than the major networks really cares?

Brian J. Schuettler

"...he, by any fair measure, barely qualifies as a Christian"

I am pretty sure the Jehovah's Witnesses will take him.

"Jehovah's Witnesses is a millenarian Christian denomination with non-trinitarian and restorationist beliefs that separate it from mainstream Christianity." Bingo!

Zachary Good

What really appalls me is how many comments there are on Kung's article by so-called Catholics proclaiming the article as a new gospel.

I came into the Church a year ago this past Easter and, while nothing can dissipate the joy of the sacraments, I never dreamed that the Church had such an enemy presence within itself.

It amazes me that someone like Kung can have spent a lifetime soaking in tradition and the scriptures and still be blind to the luminous truth of Catholic doctrine.

All I can say is the boy needs a refresher course in Aquinas and a good visit to the confessional.

Brian J. Schuettler

" I never dreamed that the Church had such an enemy presence within itself."

Ah, yes...for about two thousand years now.


How do you get the two dots above the "U", Carl? That is simply a feat in my opinion......

Carl E. Olson

Mel: Option key + "u"; release and type "u". :-)

Aniko Koro

As they say, a prophet is not recognised nor valued within his own faith. Lets hope that Joseph Ratzinger does not demand the beheading of Hans Kung.

Carl E. Olson

Aniko: You are living on the same planet as the rest of us, right?


Mel, Carl is an Apple Üser. If yoü üse Windows, go to this page for all the fun key codes:


Ratzinger demanding Kung's head? I think you have the players reversed at the moment.

Carl E. Olson

Mel is also a Mac user; he came to his senses a few months ago. ;-)

Aniko Koro

Carl:I live in the southern hemisphere. We Australians are down to earth and current. We have even produced a saint in recent times.
Having visited Eastern Europe during the "Iron Curtain" period in the 70's, I was fortunate enough to have met Catholic priests, Jews, Pentacostals and Lutherans operating underground who had been tortured for their faith. I worked for an organisation which smuggled in christian literature and money for dissidents. Hans Kung is internationally courageous. What mark are leaving behind?

Carl E. Olson

What faith, exactly, is Hans Küng teaching and living?

Aniko Koro

Carl: What God are you serving?

Aniko Koro

Carl: Over the years, Vatican officials have blamed child sex abuse by priests on everything from homosexuality to the media. Recently, in a letter of apology to Irish Catholics, Pope Benedict XIV, appeared to blame the abuse on the secularisation and fast-paced change associated with modern society. Lets keep to the subject Carl. We are talking about innocent children who have been abused by 'men of faith'. Hans Kung's God says not to be silent.

Charles E Flynn

There are two good books that have a lot of helpful information about typography on personal computers:

The Mac Is Not a Typewriter

The PC is not a Typewriter

Both are by Robin Williams.

Carl E. Olson

Lets keep to the subject Carl.

Uh, let's see....I asked, "What faith, exactly, is Hans Küng teaching and living?" And, oddly enough, the subject of this blog is Hans Küng. Which means (are you still with me?) that I am keeping to the subject.

I get it: as soon as someone criticizes your hero for being bombastic and arrogant, you play the ol' pedophile priests card, which is meant to trump anything and everything said by a Catholic defending the Pope against slander. How original.

Hans Kung's God says not to be silent.

Apparently so, judging by the endless amount of books and talks Küng produces.

Carl: What God are you serving?

I believe in one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible.

And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, begotten of the Father before all worlds; God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God; begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father, by whom all things were made.

Who, for us men for our salvation, came down from heaven, and was incarnate by the Holy Spirit of the virgin Mary, and was made man; and was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate; He suffered and was buried; and the third day He rose again, according to the Scriptures; and ascended into heaven, and sits on the right hand of the Father; and He shall come again, with glory, to judge the quick and the dead; whose kingdom shall have no end.

And I believe in the Holy Ghost, the Lord and Giver of Life; who proceeds from the Father and the Son; who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified; who spoke by the prophets.

And I believe one holy catholic and apostolic Church. I acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sins; and I look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.

Aniko Koro

Shame you did not quote a woman author Charles. Maybe it would have been more 'catholic kosher'?

Aniko Koro

Hope you preach that message to those who have been abused Carl. Would be even better if you have the time to listen to their stories of abuse as well. It may change your life!
This means you will need to shift from your comfort zone of being a blogger. Australia sounds as though it could be just the place for you. Just think you will be widely regarded for your wit, power and eloquence for blogging!
By the way my title is Reverend. Its official....ordained in 1996 in the Anglican Communion of Faith. oh and also I have the 'Knighthood of the Cross' that's official too. It is because I risked my life serving the church behind the 'Iron Curtain'. Some of us are prepared to wear our faith in being practical...... you get your hands dirty in the process.

Aniko Koro

Carl: Hope you will be able to say the Nicene Creed when you are abused and tortured for your faith.

Dr John James

Kung was interviewed here in Australia by the ABC ( Australian Broadcasting Commission ) on Radio National during the breakfast programme.So this interview would have been broadcast all over Australia.
I listened intently as I drove to work. The interview was very disappointing. Kung was introduced as essentially a Catholic priest, in good standing, and a learned academic, a professor emeritus.
He used the interview to launch a concerted attack on Benedict, his papacy, his "medievalist" Catholicism, his refusal to address priestly celibacy, his attempts to"cover up" sexual abuse, his adherence to Catholic teaching about human sexuality in the context of contraception, his covert ( or not so covert ) co-operation with that other bete noir of Kung's , John Paul 11.
He repeated over and over again his call to bishops to 'defy' the Pope, repeating many times that only to "God alone" was unconditional obedience owed.
What disappoints me even more is, again, the failure of the journalist conducting the interview to have done any research or to probe Kung's line of argument and certainly no attempt is made to "balance " the process by seeking an opinion from a spokesperson who is willing and able to defend Benedict.


...conservative-charismatic groups.

Mmmmm...interesting conjunction of adjectives. Where I came from that would be considered oxymoronic.


And I believe that Macs are infinitely superior to PCs. And, yes, I use both--but guess which one I'm happy to pay for.

Mark Brumley

Lets keep to the subject Carl. We are talking about innocent children who have been abused by 'men of faith'. Hans Kung's God says not to be silent.

Let's see whether the actions of child abusing priests are more in keeping with the moral theological views of Pope Benedict or those of dissenters from Humanae Vitae.

Is child sexual abuse more easily justified by proportionalist and consequentialist moral theological ideas or by traditional Catholic morality, with its aboslute moral norms and intrinsically evil kinds of acts? Traditional Catholic morality says child sexual abuse is intrinsically gravely evil and may never be done. Period. Priests and others who abuse children are doing something that is objectively gravely sinful and never can be justified according to traditional Catholic morality.

Can proportionalist/consequentialist moral theology say the same thing? Does it rule out, in principle, something as heinous as child sexual abuse? Answer: it does not rule it out; it rejects the idea of instrinsically evil kinds of acts, including acts of child sexual abuse as intrinsically evil kinds of acts. The best it can do is argue that it is practically impossible to conceive of a situation in which child sexual abuse could be justified. But even that is slippery in that people may differently assess the goods and bads of the situation and come to a different conclusion regarding child sexual abuse.

Which moral vision, then, traditional or dissenting, can, whether logically or psychologically, readily be used to justify fornication, adultery, same-sex genital acts, and sexual acts between adults and children? The answer is simple: the dissenting moral theology. While some people who hold traditional moral views may through sin act contrary to their views, those views themselves do not tend in themselves to faciliate gravely evil acts such as child sexual abuse. On the other hand, dissenting moral theology does--if not by virtue of explicitly-affirmed propositions, then by a general intellectual/moral outlook and resulting loosening of the anchors of traditional morality in the life of the Church.

Of course, the above does not mean that dissenting moral theology will automatically lead those who espouse it to abuse children; it means that it makes it easier for them to do so, and it makes it easier for bishops and others to cover up abuse. It also makes it harder to condemn such things and hard to counteract the moral atmosphere in which such things occur. Surely some of the abusers rationalized their actions in terms derived from or paralleling the moral reasoning found in revisionist moral theology. None of them could rationalize it based on traditional morality.

It is ironic that so many of those who dug the pit of revisionist sexual morality in the Catholic Church now act as if they are standing on the moral highground. But they are really only criticizing people who fell into the revisionist pit.

Ed Peters

In the interest of keeping this post focused on Hans Kung, I’d like to ask what the Church’s track-record is in monitoring internal finance and its impact on the poor, and then ask how it justifies belonging to a system wherein people end up hanging themselves under Roman bridges? As Hans Kung says, Christians are called to noble standards. (PS: I doubt anyone will be brave enough to address this obvious problem, but I felt I should raise it.)


Well Aniko, it is homosexuality that caused the majority of the abuse. How disgusting that people are still trying to spin that. I am not afraid to say it, I'm not politically correct, as a matter of fact I hate political correctness. Then again, the ones who worship at the altar of homosexuality cannot admit that it is a problem of homosexuality because they would have to recognize they are wrong to defend the indefensible and what they have enabled. It is not hard to see how one perversion leads to another. I have seen so much nonsense written against the church and celibacy that its enough to drive anyone crazy. Oh, please! If it were a problem of celibacy they would have found plenty of women to break their vows with, but they weren't interested in women, were they? You really can see how faith is just another one of those things many people do instead of it being what shapes their life.

I'm reading Goodbye, Good Men by Michael Rose and I'm so disgusted. Yes, it's homosexuality to blame and until we see this disgusting perversion for what it is, nothing will ever change, will it? Homosexuals do not belong in the seminaries or in the priesthood. That would be like a heterosexual in a beauty pageant.

Carl, great job as usua! It's hard to be disgusted at Kung's comments and laughing at the ones you made at the same time. God bless!


Carl: Hope you will be able to say the Nicene Creed when you are abused and tortured for your faith.

I would hope so too, Aniko. I would hope that I would be able to as well. Only with power of God to help me I suspect.

But remember, there are those who have died for Islam as well. There are those who have died for heresy. There are those who have died for evil philosophies like National Socialism and on and on through history. There are even those Catholics who have died at the hands of the King of England for not rejecting the papacy.

All in all, what does it mean? We are left with the same question as before we spoke of martyrs. What is the truth? Unlike Pilate we want to actually know.

To borrow from a more recent post George Weigel's assessment of Hans Kung is spot-on;

What has happened, I suggest, is that you have lost the argument over the meaning and the proper hermeneutics of Vatican II. That explains why you relentlessly pursue your fifty-year quest for a liberal Protestant Catholicism, at precisely the moment when the liberal Protestant project is collapsing from its inherent theological incoherence.

With all due respect Aniko, I think that is what this blog-post is about.

As to martyrs, there are many who in invincible ignorance of the fullness of truth in the Catholic Church who have nevertheless died for the name of Jesus Christ. I have complete confidence that same Jesus, who as all love, all merciful and all just, knows their hearts and will reward them as only he can. In the meantime, it is our job as Catholics to point the living to the truth of the Catholic faith.


Rev. Aniko Koro? you are very current, fancy and fashionable. "Amor sui usque ad contemptum Dei" I am sure you are very popular. Achilles

Aniko Koro

To my dear Achillses,
'Non ominus moriar'

Simone Weil's approach to the poem that led her to Christ -- George Herbert's "Love",

If only I could enter
the sanctuary of the poem,
naked as a spirit,

my miserable flesh
shed in a heap on the porch --
like at Easter in Solesmes,

when the plain song
plucked me aloft
from my suffering

and I hovered like a feather
on the breath of God,
or dust in his splendour,

far above the malheur, dégoût et
paresse of my unworthy life:
Love bade me welcome, Love

Lamb of God who takes away our sins, Have mercy on us.


Üterlly oütstandfing Carl. Scott, I switched teams a few months ago, PC's Sück!

Carl E. Olson

Mel: Ü are the man!


Reading that letter makes me feel like it's 1977 again or something. It brings back all the memories of wordy semi-Catholic blather from guys like him. I'm sure Ratzinger takes pity on him.


Rev. Aniko Koro, Thank you for sending the poem!
I think it was Chesterton who said something about open mindedness being like having your mouth open to all foods, of course you end up obese, as are most universalist irenicists, so obese they can not even see their feet or what ground on which they stand. Christ told his disciples in Matthew 10:16 as they were going into the world "be as wise as serpents and gentle as doves." We are called to have a sharp and discerning mind and an open heart. Social activitism and social justice issues seperated from Truth dissolve into sentimentality. In many cases in the modern world efforts amount to an assault on authentic freedom. Best wishes Reverend, Achilles

Manuel G. Daugherty Razetto

H.Kung's infiltration of heresy seems to be ignored by our Church. I'd like to see this puzzle corrected so the Church Discipline is preserved.

We know too well how this narcissistic man brandishes the Liberal Protestant thesis of deciding what is right or wrong by individual conscience and not by the rules of our Faith; John Paul II openly thaught us through Veritatis Splendor how to define and understand subjectivism. We need more fiat and less diplomacy/laissez-passer.


This post is pure ROFL. Thanks Carl!

Bernadette Duffy

I have just finished reading an article in a Jesuit publication entitled "Argue for heaven's sake". I quote: "We don't want a church of wimps too polite to say anything contraversial. But let us do this respectfully, without sarcasm or arrogance, without behaviour that belittles a brother or sister."

I think the spirit in which Dr. Hans Kung letter was written, embodies all of the above and all of the above is lacking, in the tone of Carl Olson's criticism

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