Friday, July 18, 2008

Questioning Faith

I have a couple of rules that I constantly abide by:

One, is to never fail to apologize. Whether it's to my wife for an unkind word said in anger or spite, or to a total stranger whose toes I've accidentally stepped on. I just feel that it is the decent thing to do, and decency is one of the things that separates us from animals. (Although I have to admit, I've caught my dog looking apologetic at times, for chewing up the morning paper.)

Another is to never question a man's faith. Oh, I'll question his motives, his background, his past actions, everything else...but never his faith. I believe that is between him and his God alone, and whatever reckoning he'll have at the pearly gates is his business, not mine. There are those who feel it is within their realm of expertise to do such things, I am just not one of them. And I will never be.

Several days ago, the now infamous "Macias letter" was forwarded to me, and it eventually found its way in our commentary, where it was systematically broken apart by our resident defenders. The funny thing was, I remember having a nagging thought in the back of my head about how the Easter Group will attempt to respond to TM's speech - especially since it obviously has nothing to do with them, and we all know how much they like to stick their noses in things they really have no business in.

So this Salvador Macias (who suspiciously sounds like someone whose initials are F.P.) who no one has ever heard of writes an email critical of Tony Meloto's Ateneo talk and sends it to the Easter Group, who then blasts it out to all who care to fish their emails out of their junkmail folder. Upon reading it, I thought to myself, "ah well there it is, at least we can now deal with it, IF it needs dealing." What I wasn't expecting was the supposed basis of this criticism: A confidential email from Caloy Palad to members of a private mailing list, which was forwarded to me soon after.

Now, we all have the freedom to disagree with anyone we choose to, much like I find myself disagreeing with Caloy's analysis of Meloto's speech. First, because I find it hard to judge a man on the basis of one speech. Second, well, because as I've stated above, I just don't believe I have any right to question a man's faith. We are all called to serve in our own capacity. If one feels that he best serves the Lord by being an authority on doctrinal issues, then so be it. I have not walked in Meloto's shoes nor have the power to look into his heart, I doubt anyone save those closest to him can. Until the day comes that I am able to, I will know the man by his works, and by his works I choose to respect him.

There is a well known story in the New Testament, where a woman poured expensive oils over Jesus' head. I think it is a fairly popular story that teaches us, among other things, to act with boldness, fervency and passion, instead of holding back or timidly going half way. I think this is the road that TM chose, and we've all seen its result.

I won't go into the Macias letter much, mostly because it's already been picked apart in the commentaries. I am quite surprised (or maybe not) at how calculated it was to evoke an emotional response, deftly mixing truth with lies. This entry will get too long if we went through each paragraph though, but I did compile the responses to make it easier for you all to get the gist of it.

Download the Salvador Macias letter and related comments HERE.

I did the same for Caloy's letter and the bloggers' responses to it.

Download Caloy Palad's email and related comments HERE.

However, I would like to state for the record that I have nothing against Caloy or his views. I know in my heart that he meant no harm to Tony, to GK, to CFC, and the IC. I am deeply saddened that his words were taken out of context and used maliciously by the Easter Group, who have shown a propensity for such behavior in the past. It seems they will jump at anything to further their causes, to hell with who they hurt along the way. That, my friends are not the actions of God fearing people, and that is the closest I've come to questioning anyone's faith.

I am requesting now for those who are doubting Caloy's loyalties to please stand down. He does not deserve it, and surely we are better Christians than that.

I am also taking the liberty of publishing his subsequent emails, condemning those who sought to sow discord among us through the unauthorized use of his words.

"Dear all:

"It has come to my attention that my [critique of] the speech of Tony Meloto in Ateneo has been forwarded [from a confidential mailing list] to the CFC-FFL of Frank Padilla, which has mass e-mailed my post to their supporters as well as to CFC members in order to defame the CFC-International Council.

"Now, because of the indiscretion of that mailing list member, the CFC-FFL is gleefully using MY GOOD NAME and is hiding behind MY REPUTATION in order to bring down Tony Meloto and the CFC International Council.

"As I took pains to point out in my original posting, it was NOT my intention to bring down Tony Meloto. Yes, he does have some theological errors IMHO, but these do not erase his dedication to service and his love for the poor. In pointing out certain weaknesses in his speech it was never my intention to denigrate his service, nor cast aspersions on his good intentions.

"I am ready to stand by my words and to face like a man whatever controversy comes my way, but it grieves me that my words are now being used in favor of a group (the CFC-FFL) that I have not ceased to warn people against."
Highlight mine.

That letter was followed by this:

Dear All:

These past few days have been especially painful for me. First, due to an indiscretion, my casual email regarding Tony Meloto has been transformed by Frank Padilla's minions into a weapon to unjustly tar, not just Tony Meloto, but also CFC-Global.

As I expected, this has caused an immense amount of anger, directed not at FFL, but personally at me. And the most unfair thing is, I have no way of defending myself. My mother has informed me that I have been personally denounced by members of Couples for Christ as an enemy and as a supporter of Frank Padilla. Nothing could be further from the truth! I am firmly convinced that this unjust and malicious action was done by FFL not only in order to discredit Tony Meloto, but also to discredit me, whom they have long known to be an uncompromising critic of Frank Padilla's cult following. Indeed, my mother had the humiliation of having to hear my email discussed in the highest council of the Handmaids of the Lord. God knows what other things have now been said behind my back. I feel that my back is against the wall, and I can expect no support now.


Dear All:
I RETRACT the accusation that I had made against Jack Burgoyne, an accusation that I previously believed rested on strong evidence, but which, upon further reflection, was not sufficiently strong to warrant my public emails.
I have also requested to erase the offending passage from my emails (which they had posted). And, for the benefit of those who may already have read the accusation, I have also added a comment to the said website enunciating the same retraction that I here publish.
I ask forgiveness of all who may have been hurt by my reactions. My own pain (and that of my mother) cannot justify what I have done. And I would like to thank the CFC members who have assured me of their prayers, and of their love and support.
I also ask you to pray for me. I am ashamed that my reaction to this Cross has not been Christian. I am sorry that I have not given good example in my reaction to calumny and the varied insults that came my family's way.
I also ask you to continue praying for my health.

Brother Caloy, let it be known now that I am defending you and you have MY support. I know that your first email was posted here and commented on by the bloggers, yet I see that you have their respect, not only for the courage to state your opinions but for the backbone to stand by them. I am posting your responses here in the hopes that it reaches those who need to know the truth of the matter.

Speaking of which, that's something that our Easter Group brothers up to now have not been able to do. Need I remind them of their emails accusing our good bishops of "twiddling their thumbs" and "smoking pot", of which we haven't heard even a whisper of an apology to the clergy members in question?

Let me remind you all of an entry from back in February, where I quoted in full an email from Sis Norinna Palad, in which she prophetically corrected the FFL's Ado Paglinawan, who was planning another misuse of someone else's words:
In all of these, we have to remain vigilant especially when invoking the Holy Spirit, lest we grieve Him by making or passing on statements given by others, to which individuals are ASKED to commit or agree to, LEST they commit the "unforgivable sin against the Holy Spirit".. This is plain and simple HERESY. We ALL have the power to call upon the Holy Spirit for guidance and discernment., in order to make wise and individual decisions. No person can say that he has the sole prerogative of speaking for the Holy Spirit. Not even the Pope makes that claim, and not even the Pope says that those who disagree with him can never be forgiven.

Let us all be guided by the Holy Spirit at all times.

Your sister in Christ,
Nori Palad
Let us not doubt where the Palads stand in this battle, because it is VERY clear to me. Their plight now paints a grim picture of how low the Easter Group will stoop to further their causes. I also enjoin the bloggers to leave comments to show your support for Caloy and his family.

* * *

Still related to the Macias and Palad emails, here is an article by Bishop Claver, a follow up to the first which was also posted here, and arguably a great response to the Macias email.

Here are the two pages excerpted from the CPBP Monitor:

I've also taken the article text and pasted it into Word to make it easier to read, you may download that with the two pages from the CBCP Monitor HERE.

One last thing:

Over a week ago, when I first received Salvador Macias' (which I'm almost 99% sure is a nom de guerre, unless Mr. Macias cares to step forward to stand up for his work) and Caloy's emails, my first response was to either post it as an update to the Ploughshares entry or start a new one around them, to get the word out and have the defenders start responding. Somehow though, something told me there was more to it. Lo and behold, as things developed, a few days later we see Caloy's response. Then a couple of days after that, his second email. I don't know what might have happened if I'd followed my first impulse, but all I know is, something stopped me. The whole thing just felt wrong, and I knew that Caloy Palad would not let this pass without a good fight.

Sometimes, we've gotta learn to really listen to that little voice with a big message that seems to come from the back of your head but is really emanating from the heart. I've heard it said that when the Lord speaks, it's not with a megaphone (Although, I'd like to think Typhoon Frank and the Marikina fiasco is an exception).

Those who truly hear the Lord are those who choose to LISTEN.

May God bless us all, have a great weekend my friends.


I changed the template again (and added a new sidebar section called "Site News"), I'd really appreciate some feedback. Is it easier to read now? Colors ok?


jonitanitayturin said...

CD, although in a more limited instance, I also experienced holding on to a draft or two of a comment only to find out they would be more responsive to the upcoming thread. I realize I am "sewn together" with the other defenders to hook to a given "point", if need be, and I sing the highest praises that the INFINITE HAND OF OUR ALMIGHTY GOD fashions and puts in place the clear designs He has ordained, to our awe and puzzlement.

This thread or topic on "Questioning Faith" is a good sequel to "Voices of Faith and Reason".

I praise God for all the Wisdom we draw and drink from this Blog.


Anonymous said...

Peace to all!!!

I was also disgusted when I read the Easter Group's commentary to the "I want to be a good Catholic" lecture/speech of TM @ the Ateneo. I just couldn't believe that there are people who are supposed to be "spiritually" mature and yet tried so hard to find fault in a person's speech which is purely inspirational and a literal expression of his faith & beliefs. Can't these people just read and leave it as is? What sort of good can they possibly achieve or gain out of doing this?

Truly, this is NOT the "fruit" of the HOLY SPIRIT working in their lives.

Now, Caloy's confidential e-mail message was intercepted, manipulated and twisted to malign TM & the CFC-IC. Again, what common good will be achieved by this insidious act of people who consider themselves "spiritually" superior over and above the rest? What "spirit" guides them?

Let's pray for brother Caloy because his fight is our fight. Keep our hearts focus & fix our eyes on Jesus Christ and He will help us overcome the "evil" in our midst.

God bless,
DBC - North B

Carlos Antonio Palad said...

Dear CD:

Thank you for the words of encouragement.

On the request of certain people, I will be writing a fuller (and more "academic") explanation of my thoughts on Tony Meloto. For the record, I have great respect for the MAN, I have never quarreled with or judged his heart, and my "quarrel" is only with a few (not even ALL) passages in his speech.

Reading the comments -- especially of those who called me names -- made me realize that some people thought that my short email pretended to be a full-scale interpretation of Tony Meloto's speech. Nothing could be further than the truth. I composed that email in just a few minutes and it has the character of an "off-the-cuff" remark, pending a fuller and more objective exploration of the topics at hand.

This, again, is the problem with taking things out of context. In Apologia and certain other Internet fora, there have been prolonged (and often intense) discussions of CFC, FFL and the charismatic movement in general. My latest comment on TM was but one tiny link in that long chain of emails. To fully understand what I was conveying in my email would require that one be part of the conversation in Apologia since 2007.

Trapping my "off-the-cuff email" and saying that it was the entirety of the conversation... well, that is simply not correct.

CD, thanks for giving me this opportunity. As for your disagreement with my ideas, I accept it with good humor. Those who know me personally can attest that I argue intensely about ideas, but I will not tear people apart simply for disagreeing with me. That ain't Christian at all.

C.D. said...


It's good to see you here. I know I speak for everybody here when I say that I am hoping to see you interacting with the lively discussions going on in the entries.

What was done to you wasn't right bro, I hope that this helps in its own little way to get the word out.

God bless,


MinaFrancisco said...

I've kept still for sometime but I must at this point express my support for Caloy.

I understand that within his private group of apologists, Caloy was asked to give comment on TM's speech. It's not as if, as others now believe or are made to believe, that he decided motu-propio to attack Tony by offering his critique. Caloy did so by way of a response and so emailed his opinion to his group's private and members-only mailing list. It seems to me that TM's speech is an item for discussion amongst his private group; Caloy's opinion is probably just one of them.(Pushed to the extreme - if others are so agitated about Caloy's opinion and have since countered with their own, - might they also be interested in the opinions of the other apologists? I hope we all stop here.)

Then it happened. Caloy's opinion was "leaked", then blasted off by FFL in the emails, and since then been made to appear as a definitive conclusion on TM's speech.

Now Caloy is a HOT spot. He has written us about his pain. CD and a few others have looked at him with compassionate eyes. At this point, he is a brother in need of understanding.

What I'd like to point out is that, while Caloy may have misgivings about Tony's views, Caloy nonetheless has been fully supportive of CFC and GK. While he states what he thinks are errors in a person's view, basing it on his (Caloy's) appreciation of the Catholic doctrines, yet he does not let such "errors" hinder his own (Caloy's) personal support of GK and of the CFC that promotes it. Here is one person who can disagree with some of TM's personal views, and yet is able to see and promote GK, all because he believes that independently of how others work out their faith, helping the poor remains to be God's call for His people, and in particular, GK for CFC.

His mother, Nori Palad, is a chapter head of Handmaids in a West-C GK Village and its surrounding areas. Caloy has been very supportive of her and her GK service.

HOLD is blessed to have Nori as one of its PFO Core Group members. Reason - thru Nori, when in need of doctrinal clarifications, the HOLD PFO Core Group members benefit from the gift of Caloy as an apologist, to ensure the consistency of HOLD'S pastoral materials/talks with the Catholic doctrines.

I hope this will give a better perspective to the situation that Caloy has been thrust into.

In Christ - Mina/HOLD

Round-Eyed Toddler said...

Brothers and Sisters,

My take on the existing issue is that there is clearly an existing notion that those who have chosen to stay in CFC, much more those who remain passionately involved in Gawad Kalinga, are blind adherents to everything that Tony Meloto says or does.

Let's take that notion out of our minds, once and for all. That notion is why in my previous post somewhere in this blog, I recounted how I was floored by a friend's question, "Are you in the camp of Tony Meloto?" I told my friend, "Hey, I'm CFC. Period."

When someone like Caloy Palad says something seemingly critical of Tony Meloto and people start calling him names, I cannot help but be concerned. Tsk, Tsk, Tsk. Here we are again. Let's not debase ourselves. Each one of us is gifted with a brain.

I too have all my respects for Tony Meloto. His life story is inspiring. His passion for GK is worth emulating. But I also have misgivings, being a GK volunteer myself at that. I did not agree to his issuance of GK1MB ID cards. I did not feel good about his open attacks against the clergy. We can talk more lengthily about each point, but as of now, you see that I am neither pro- nor anti-Meloto. I am simply CFC. Period.

I am proud to have Meloto around, CFC. But I am not one to take everything he says with blind adherence. God may be speaking to him, and I am following his lead in GK. But on doctrinal matters, I cannot accept him as the authority; nor does he claim to be one.

Tony Meloto simply wants to be a good Catholic, just like the rest of us. In the same breath, let us give space to opinions from people like Caloy Palad. This is what we have to go through in order to define ourselves more sharply. We know who we are not. We should also define who we are.

The only inexcusable thing that can happen here is when one starts another CFC just because people do not agree with him.

The Round-Eyed Toddler

Anonymous said...

Anyone here pls give background brief on who is Caloy Palad. thanks

Anonymous said...

Brother Carlos:

When you will later want to publish or blast your thoughts about Bro Tony Meloto or the “religiosity” of CFC’s GK, I wish it will not be through this Blog, which is meant to defend CFC. I want to have the boldness to tell you, Brother, that your probable objective criticism of our community and GK – as soon as you will have recovered your bearings, so to speak -- cannot be ushered here in this Blog. We just cannot “preside over our own execution”, if you know what I mean.

That having been said, I welcome your taking refuge here with us, and defend your right to speak against your detractors. You are our brother in need. Here’s a tight hug from this corner. Praise the Lord!

Carlos Antonio Palad said...

Dear all:

I have just received the message from Jack Burgoyne (via a mutual acquaintance) that he strongly denies that he was responsible for the unauthorized spreading of my email in the Internet.

Even though he is with FFL, I wish to give him the benefit of the doubt.

I had made the accusation on the basis of an email I received from a trustworthy person who also knew him. For the moment, I retract all accusations, and seek forgiveness if my own anger has led to me sinful actions and rash judgements.

At the same time, I admonish the "Easter Group" emailer who did this to me, not to do it to anyone else.

Max said...

Out of the topic 'to.

Just like to ask CD or anybody.

Who are the authors of our CLP talks? Frank?

One of the reasons I ask is that we treat the expanded outline as like a canon law that if we invite speakers or we are the speakers, we always told to follow and everything in there and as far as possible speakers should be just from CFC so that we can insist to make the speaker follow the expanded outline and if it's a priest or deacon They will not follow.

Another reason was that during our unit meeting last Wednesday, one of the new HH asked me the same thing as above because they suggested that WHo is Jesus Christ and Baptism of the Holy SPirit should be talked by a clergy or have more knowledge about theology.

Then they further added that THEY research the Talk no 2 and Most of the wordings in EXPANDED OUTLINE MAY HAVE TAKEN FROM the BOOK WRITTEN by A PROTESTANT and they FURTHER RESEARCH and they LEARNED that FRANK PADILLA was with this PROTESTANT,

The HH further suggested that We should get our talks and reference from CATHOLIC Teachings.

They are still on the process of COMPARING THE Expanded Outline WORD for WORD against the Book written by that Protestant.

They Borrowed the Book from the Library.

PLease advise, WHO ARE THE AUTHORS of our CLP TALKS and references.

andyalquiroscfcquezon said...

CFC is a community of different people. Each member has their own identity. Each and every one of us are affected by the circumstances surrounding us but the one thing we all have in common is our Faith in God which brings us all together. When we talk about our Faith in God every member is in a different level of Faith. Like to the newly graduate of the CLP, his Faith will be on a different plain compared to a household head or unit head who has been in CFC far longer. It is the duty of the members who have gone a long way in their Faith to guide and lead the members who have just started in their journey of Faith. It is by the grace of God that we have this Faith. GOD IS THE GIVER OF FAITH.

Lets talk about the circumstances surrounding us which affects our Faith.

It is understood that if we have Faith in God, God is above all and the first of our priorities when it comes to our Faith, being the Giver of such Faith. If we make a ranking of these circumstances, God should be number one because the first two commandments he gives us in the 10 commandments refers to Him, which means to love Him with all our hearts, mind, body, and soul as Jesus said in Luke 5. The next 8 of his commandments refers to our neighbor which is to love our neighbor as we love ourselves as Jesus also said in Luke 5.

Now we ask who is our neighbor?

If we make a ranking of who our neighbors are it will be ranked according to who is closest to us and it is obvious that our immediate family will be number one. God made it in a way that all of us belong to a family whether we be the parents or we be the children. As he said in His third commandment honor thy Father and Mother. One way or another we all will be either fathers or mothers. That is why it is very important for us to take good care of our families. That is why next to our love for God will be our love for our Families. That is also why one of the visions God has given us is Families in the Holy Spirit renewing the face of the earth. Our number one priority is to renew our families first and foremost which is very hard as it is because of the influences of the earthly world. As we renew and love our families everything will fall into place because God will bless us as he has blessed CFC this past 27 years of Family renewal. It will take more than a lifetime for us to achieve complete Family renewal in our country or in the world at that.

Family Renewal is at the heart of everything we do in CFC. As we grow more and more as loving Families renewed by His Holy Spirit, God will continually let His love shine through us with all that we do. The Family is the most important neighbor we have and all our other neighbors with respect to the Family is secondary in nature. We in CFC teach that loving our Families is of utmost importance. Not only loving them because of material obligation but loving our Families with the true love that comes from God. The world we live in today has been corrupted that emphasis has only been given to the material obligation that is why there are many Families, especially in our country, that tend to limit their love only to their Family. I need not expound on this but I'm sure most of you get the meaning of what I am saying. We want to give the very best for our Families that we most of the times tend to out do it forgetting that there are other people around us that need our help and love also. That is why we need to renew the Family first and foremost. This is a continuing process.

After more than 20 years of Family renewal, CFC was now ready for its next vision to bring glad tidings to the poor. We in CFC were very eager to spread the love of God to our other neighbors to complete our Faith in God thru Christ.

Now let us classify the poor with regards to our Faith. There are two classifications which we can derive from this. The poor in spirit and the poor physically(materially included). As you all have seen during our 27th anniversary the two pillars. The Church of the Family and the Church of the Poor. We all agree that the Family before we entered CFC was very poor in spirit and being the most basic unit in our community needed renewal and this renewal will be constant all our lives. We in CFC have addressed the first classification. Now it was time to address the second classification. The Poor physically.

Looking at our society we are divided by different classes. A,B,C,D, and E. This is according to our status with regards to wealth. Classes A and B are definitely wealthy with more than enough and with lots to spare. Class C which is the middle class just have enough for their needs with little to spare. Class D and and E just basically do not have enough for their day to day needs. Greed and Pride is the cause of this tremendous imbalance in our society today. As Tony Meloto put it " Oftentimes we are not conscious that the higher collective good is sacrificed for self and kin. Family is the most common and most acceptable excuse for greed in a society that prides and strives on strong family ties. " This is exactly why we have to renew our Family first including ourselves to be able to move forward in building the Church of the Poor.

All of us, one way or another, have been helping the poor in our own little way because of the renewal that we have received thru CFC. Then came GK. A gift from God. GK became a rallying point to put our efforts collectively to help the poor in a new way and more holistically at that. Because at the core of GK is family renewal. I believe that all of us should eventually support GK being a completion of our Faith in God if God will allow this to happen.

Helping the poor has always been a challenge by God to all believers in Christ. It is part of our Faith. There are many ways to help the poor but the most important aspect of helping the poor is the condition of our hearts when we do it. IS GOD GLORIFIED WHEN YOU HELP THE POOR? Many workers of GK feel frustrated and discouraged and even angry on why so many members of CFC have not embraced this work or are not doing what they are doing. My brothers in GK, there is no need to be frustrated, discouraged or angry. God will bless you by what you do for the poor thru GK. On why there are still so little serving in GK is not of our concern but the Lords. If it took so many years of Family Renewal for our leaders to love the poor the way they do now what more the other members of the community. We cannot and should not impose our Faith, being in a different level, to the other members of the community who do not see it the way we do. This will only cause conflict as what happened in our community. God sees whats in our hearts and if it is filled with frustration and discouragement and even anger, then God is not Glorified in what you do for the poor. Fill your hearts with joy, love, humility and patience then God will truly bless you and give you peace.

There will always be people who will not understand what we understand but it does not mean that they are wrong. It will be God who will decide who is right and who is wrong not us. That is the diversity of our being human. God wants all men to have Faith in Him and if he willed it everyone will and we wouldn't be talking about this anymore, but God gives us that choice, He gave us free will to choose with regards to our Faith in Him. The parable of the sower in last Sundays mass clearly explains this. We should not abuse the Faith that God has given us by imposing it on others, only God can do that. What is more important is that we let Faith bear fruit abundantly by doing our Faith.

CFC is truly a blessing from God. It has made me realize that God is truly the commander of my life. We are but mere witnesses to His Majesty embracing the Faith from by His grace was given.

Max said...

Hi CD and Bloggers Brother/Sisters:

Here's the info about my previous comment.

Anybody can advise us? WHen they asked me, I replied that our CLP talks had been approved by CBCP and/or Vatican (am not sutre though). I further added, that the CBCP, our elders and other priest didnt notice anything about the talks.

So Mga Kapatid, JUST LIKE THE CFC ORIGINS now that we know after more than 10 years in the community, THIS TIME WE ASKED Who are the authors of our CLP TALKS or the ORIGIN of OUR CLP TALKS.

THANK YOU Mga kapatid.

Please read below sent by our brother/sister one of our HH.

Mcdowell, Josh. The New Evidence that Demands Verdict.

Please browse the ff sites:,lunati.html

I personally don't see anything wrong in reading Protestant materials, but what I object to is the way CFC treats the CLP expanded outline as "infallible" and should never be changed even by a priest or a theologian/seminarian.

When Fr. G.... was invited by CFC in 2005 to be a speaker, he mentioned to us that he had qustions about some of the contents of the outline that was given to him. But I guess he never had the chance to discuss them with Bro. M... because he was transferred to another parish.

My intention in researching about the authorship of the CLP teachings is to ensure that we are actually promoting Catholic teachings to our brothers and sisters and not just "mouthing" the thoughts of Mr. Padilla and his protestant friends. I believe that Bishop Claver and Bishop Arguelles and the priests who support CFC are more credible theologians than Josh McDowell. I had Religion subjects for four years at UST High School, 8 Theology subjects while in College also in UST, and worked for several years as a Pastoral Worker in UP Parish, but never heard of the "Jesus, liar, lunatic or Lord" argument, until I heard it in our CLP.

Bro., maybe what we can do is do a TEXT ANALYSIS of all the expanded outlines to trace sources. I have software at work that can match texts in electronic form to existing docs in the web. i f you can send me an electronic copy of the texts, I'll do it at work.

By the way, the only people who know about this are the members of our Unit Household.

If you have time, you can come to our house to see the book.

Anonymous said...

Hi there, Brother Max!

I think we also have to take an ecumenical stance in CFC. At the same time, “Bakit pa natin pakialaman ang regular teaching guides?”

But if you feel strongly about it, refer the matter to your upper household. Or if you really have the beef, get all your detailed counter-statements or discovered “errors” (else fallacious statements) in an opus for formal discussion by CFC. I think you cannot just devote separate time as a household to discuss matters outside your formation track. Mawawala and mga members nito (your members will get lost).

I remember we had a member who would bring in other people’s comments about some Bible topics outside of the formal guides. He got out because his drift was different. I hope you can help keep your HH in line. We’ve had our pastoral conference. Inform the highest CFC leaders in your area about your need to investigate the teachings. Maybe you can do this after you formalize the results of your electronic search/study of the relevant words and phrases under question.

Otherwise, please stand down on the matter of reviewing our teaching materials, Brother. I honestly believe it is better that you proceed to discuss our regular household topics that are “in line”, rather than be critical about them – may be “corny” but – “share than stare”(?). Like what we would advise our brethren who “felt strongly” about some things in CFC: “Pray and lift your concerns to the Lord.” After all, what we teach are largely experiential. One time we read a Bible, but when we explain it, we do so from our experience of God in our lives, which thanks to Him, no doctrinaire seriously contested.

Additionally, there are instances when we can be open to a priest’s opinion about living our faith “up to a certain point’ only. Otherwise, we may be giving him more than enough credence. If a local priest you have invited to be a CLP speaker registers a strong objection to the usual talk outline for couples, you have painted yourself in, I think. When a couple talks about Jesus Christ, it is the experience of Him in the conjugal relationship and/or it is an invitation to bring Him more actively in the same, and yes, it must be a couple, rather than a priest who will be the most natural or appropriate resource speakers. Moreover, the "training" program for our Christian life as couples is based on experience, of which a Catholic priest is assumed to have none (I am sorry, this is obvious). Similarly, Brother Max, I think you may not invite an “outsider” to talk about or else make a critique of, our traditional talk outlines.

About the Catholic content of our teachings, I leave it up to your wandering thoughts. I just would like to reiterate that we must have an ecumenical approach in our evangelization rather promote bigotry. For instance, will we admit that our “charismatic” prayer (dancing, clapping, and the musical instruments) was adopted from those popularized by non-Catholics, or the Born-Again Christians? Likewise, you may also want to revisit the gesture of Pope John XXIII when he ushered in “aggiornamento” through the teachings of Vatican II, which was surely included in your UST religious classes.

Brother Max, I feel you have the inner drive to do what is best for our CFC. But your zest to share what you know must be reinforced by the Wisdom of knowing and humbly admitting what you don’t. I pray that your pastoral leaders will have the Wisdom to accept queries like those coming from you and allow you to grow with them in a loving relationship.

And so, may I invite your upper household…to act on from whereof we speak, and stake their claim and pastoral authority on you and your group, for the LORDSHIP of Jesus Christ!

Mara'83 said...

Do you want to know the identity of the fictitious Mr. Macias? Here are some clues:
1. Who is it who knows TM so well (have they been together for the longest time in one HH?) that he can already "forsee" the inner motivations and meaning behind TM's speech and heart?
2. Who is it who tends to answer an email using his comments/responses embedded in the email in BLUE and in Bold caps? check out past emails to him and his reponse to them. Check out also the manner and style of language that he uses. Sounds familiar?
3. Who is it who seems to be talking from a much higher plane (than mere mortals like us), judging us (only God can do that), and consistently mouthing phrases like "veering away" and the like? He preferred to leave CFC, immediately attacked the whole community he left behind, and now styles himself as the "restorer" of the CFC charism.
4. Why does Mr. Macias seem to know the workings of the CFC structure intimately (i.e, social ministries and GK)? His own words are reveal his identity.
5. Why couldn't Mr. Macias contain and control himself from commenting on TM's speech? He just had to have the last say. Either inggit, or "ayaw malamangan" ni TM.
6. Who has this habit of getting private correspondence, taking parts of it, and blasting it the cyberworld without the author's permission ? Sometimes, they tamper documents to suit their purpose.
7. Who tends not to mind their own business but CFC's (CFC is not theirs)?

Your slip is showing.
You will know him by his fruits. Angry. Righteous. Frustrated.

How much did you score?
Where in the world is Mr. Macias (not Carmen Sandiego)?

Anonymous said...

Brother Max,

Bro Anonymous is right. I would just like to add a couple more points.

(1) There is a reason for having outlines. As outlines, they are meant to be fleshed out by the speaker's experience. The outlines give the sequence of the concepts, the context as it were, in which the speaker shares his experience of the Holy Spirit's workings in his own life. How the Spirit works in our lives have varied forms and include specific events. It also includes instances when we are made to realize certain truths by looking back on our own lives' events. The intent is for the speaker to become a witness. The talk thus becomes a testimony to the Spirit. This parallels the action of the disciples of the early church. They evangelized through personal testimony.

(2) CFC does not have a monoploy on the truth. It is the Lord who decides to whom he will reveal Himself. Being a Catholic, or a Christian, does not give us the exclusive right to be recipients of God's wisdom. Thus the call to an ecumenical approach. In simpliest terms, an open-mindedness. This does not mean, however, that we now have to reopen the discourses that brought the doctrines of the Church into existence. It does mean that we be more discerning. Thus, a personal communion with the Spirit, through our daily prayer times, becomes essential. We must always seek His guidance and allow Him to move us where he will.

There have been cases when a speaker has prepared his talk but delivered, almost extemporaneously, a completely different talk under the Spirit's urging. Same topic, same outline, but a content different from his prepared talk. I am not an expert on doctrinal issues but, to me, such instances come closely similar to Mk 13:11. And in response to Jeremiah's assertion that he is unprepared for the mission being given to him, God placed His hand on Jeremiah's mouth and declared "Behold, I have put My words in your mouth."

If you want to do your research, by all means do it. However, I would suggest that you do it in the spirit of seeking to expand your knowledge, not in the spirit of seeking to establish the provenance of the talks. We cannot be the judges of truth. Supposing you do find out that Josh Mcdowell was the one who started the idea? Would that make it any less truthful? Does a logically reasoned argument proving Jesus is Lord have to come from a Catholic source for us to accept it as truth?

Remember the story in the Bible when the disciples asked the Lord what they should do about someone casting out demons in His name but who was not one of them? (Mk 9:40).

- TE

Max said...

Thank you Brother Anonymous and Brother TE.

I will give a copy of your advise to one of our HH.

I was the one questioned by these HH and my reply was that all our CLP Talks were approved by CBCP and Vatican, so there's should be no problem.

I was just also interested when they asked if FP was the author because they read it frl FFL website.

That's why they are very critical about specially when they learned about FP and Josh from their research.

I think hey just also being critical since we have this crisis/division created by FP.



Anonymous said...

No probs there, Brod Max. I like finding myself in a situation where my reply connects with the highly-defined and clearly-premised propositions of TE. GOD BLESS!

Carlos Antonio Palad said...

Dear anonymous and TE:

While I support CFC-IC, it is precisely the relativistic attitude towards Catholic doctrine so prevalent in certain sectors in CFC-GK that terrifies me (and which I am critiquing).

CFC-IC would not be, without the Catholic Church. It has its statutes and support from the Vatican. CFC is nothing without the Catholic Church.

CFC-IC certainly must show an open and welcoming stance towards Protestants, but not at the expense of surrendering Catholic doctrine and identity. And before you invoke John XXIII and his call for aggiornamento, please make sure that you read his October 11, 1962 opening speech to Vatican II, which makes it clear that openness to the world does not mean giving up Catholic doctrine.

Let us not be ashamed to confess that the Catholic Church has the FULNESS OF TRUTH. This is not the same as saying that we Catholics have a monopoly on truth, for we do not. Certainly though, it is the Catholic Church which has preserved the fullness of the Deposit of Faith, handed to us from Our Lord and the Apostles in the form of Scripture and Tradition.

Re: the question of Protestant spirituality in CFC modules, I think it is a valid concern. Sis. Mina and my mother know that I have raised this concern several times. It is not bad to learn from Protestant sources, but these learnings must always be grounded upon an ultimately Catholic spirituality.

Anonymous said...

Brother Carlos Palad:

Too bad, the issue about you got buried by the "nuisance"/ distraction of a Tulabing caper thrown in by FFL which also suppressed the GK community in Remarville, Quezon City. These issues sowed confusion, the homeground of Evil.

Brod, you did just right to recant and take back your accusation against Jack Burgoyne. That was very a noble and laudable act, indeed.


Anonymous said...

Seguro, mahirap na talaga makakita ng “puro” (We will have a slim chance at having anything that is thoroughly pure) these days, because of enculturation, acculturation and cultural diffusion. In fact, that some great modern religions did survive the tests and upheavals of the times is because they were able to adapt (read accept and incorporate different views) to them.

The anthropological study of religion will easily point out that the concept of monotheism evolved from elementary forms of religious beliefs – from animism, ancestor worship, to polytheism. Close to two thousand years of Catholic belief in a monotheistic God pales in comparison with the hundreds of thousands of years when man (and even perhaps the anthropoids) expressed their ‘fear of the unknown’ in various forms of worship – include in there such ‘exotic’ religious phenomena as the ‘stonehenge’, the Aztec temples, the phallic worship in India, and the still undeciphered hyrogliphics buried in the enormous tombs of the Etruscans (we may also put into this hodge-podge those tribal groups that “throw” their idol-gods away if they don’t bring in rain when prayed to).

I wish to say that in historical and anthroplogical sense, this thing about being Catholic and defending its institutions is a matter of Faith. Why I follow Jesus Christ whose sacrifice for humanity is recalled in the Holy Mass that celebrates His transubstantiation and why I have decided to build the Catholic faith of my family using the formula devised by CFC are all a matter of Faith.

What I feel really queasy about at this point is having to confront a Catholic Defender like you, Brother Carlos, who can confound me with so much doctrine to make me toe some Catholic line. Yes I proclaim my Catholic Faith as manifested in my Church worship and trying to live being a member of CFC. However, in connection with this ‘queasy’ feeling, maybe what I want to propose is: Whatever it is to that any Catholic authority, apologist, or ordinary bystander will “carp about” or want corrected in CFC will have to be addressed to the CFC executive council. In the meantime, leave everyone down the line to “SHARE” not study nor debate their EXPERIENCE of Jesus Christ – not necessarily ‘catholic life’ - in and through CFC.

No offense meant, Brod. Just a sharing.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Palad,

I fully agree with you that all our teachings in CFC must be grounded on Catholic spirituality. I do not believe that Catholic doctrine is being questioned here.

It is the function of our elders, under the guidance of our Spiritual Directors, to approve the content of the talks to ensure adherence to Catholic spirituality.

Having said that, I thank you for the warning. I can see that it is indeed easy to create teachings that may even go against doctrine without meaning to.

In this regard, could you please expound some more on what you meant by "fullness of truth"? Fullness implies completeness, an all-inclusiveness. In the context of what you wrote, did you mean "the Catholic Church has the full truth" or "the teachings of the Catholic Church have fullness of truth". I do not mean to debate semantics with you but you have to admit the former means that the Church has the deposit of all truths and the latter means that what the Church teaches are fully truthful.

With the former, it becomes easy for a Catholic to commit spiritual arrogance. It would be so easy to claim that only the Church has the whole truth. The latter does not lay claim to having the whole truth but that all that the Church has is fully truthful.

Since you agree that we do not have a monopoly on the truth, is it the latter?

God bless,

- TE

Anonymous said...

Brod Carlos:

Of course, many historical truths about our Christian Faith will have been lost to or pillaged by the barbarians if not for the indefatigable and heroic works of the Catholic defenders, most importantly those in monasteries. If this is what you mean by the Catholic Church having the FULLNESS OF TRUTH, then you are partly correct, because the monks did restore and preserve most of the records about Christianity, or about the known world. This unique historical role makes the Catholic Church the mother of “Western” / Christian Civilization.

It may perhaps be alright to "brag" about this particular historical role to the extent of having an apologist claim the Church has 'fuller' truths, but it will certainly be more "spiritually appropriate" (?) to simply state that the teachings of the Catholic Church have "fullness of truth". I hasten to add, though that I have the impression that Catholic apologists can fall into making an arrogant stance that is defensible anyway - like pointing out that the scrolls and other religious artifacts have been preserved and more thoroughly studied by the Catholic Church and not by any other Christian religion; or, that civilization - the "western" one most of the current "modern" world is familiar with - is essentially driven by Catholic philosophies; however the same apologist may balk at an argument that the teachings of the Catholic Church have the "fullness of Truth" because that will elevate the philosophical and theological discussions higher and purer, which is quite a path to tread for the mentally challenged.

That is why, I have already registered my opinion that I only want to SHARE here (in fact I also pleaded earlier that I would rather not preside over CFC’s execution -- by allowing the “amputation” of some of our long-held beliefs); maybe Brother Carlos will have a different perspective.

TE thank you for raising the question about the FULLNESS OF TRUTH. While the majesty of the Church can just manifest its having the ‘full truth’ matter-of-factly and without fanfare, an apologists stressing it or drawing our attention to it will be unbecoming and arrogant (somehow). However, it becomes more profound if the concept that “the Church teachings have the fullness of truth” is expounded for us to learn a kernel or two about Catholic truths.

EB-3C said...

Dear Brothers,

This is just a wild guess; some bloggers are asking who is this "Macias"? I don't know if this is coincidence or truth.

The surname "Macias" is popular in Dumaguete. Fr. Tulabing is from Dumaguete. If "Macias" is an alias of a writer, is there a possibility that Fr. Tulabing knows "Macias" or "Macias" knows Fr. Tulabing. Maybe Mr. "Macias" and Fr. Tulabing are neighbors or sitting on the same chair.


Divinos said...

Bro EB-3C,

It is possible, since " Salvador means - Holy Savior" in spanish & " Macias means -gift of God". (From google).

Me sense nga,baka may relation sila FAP o somebody from FFL & Father? Paki investigate naman mga Bros/Sis...

Caloy's former chapter head said...

Carlos, I understand your current situation right now. Last thursday, im really tempted wrote here but I choose not to. I personally think its unfair that your private mail will be used out of context. Though you chose a different route it doesnt mean that mean that dont love CFC and GK anymore. I know that you supported GK. One time in your SFC life, I asked you to be part of SFC GK volunteers serving at West C.

I hope to talk to you soon. My mind is just preoccupied in the GK service that I will temporarily left in one the province north of Metro Manila and my wife is due to give birth.

Mga kapatid, let us just treat Caloy fairly and dont think that he is not one of us.

Thanks and God bless

Divinos said...


Check this:

Maybe Bro. Loloy Dinorog CFC-FFL Cagayan de Oro and Misamis Oriental is also mislead?

He is a Brother and he may want to exhange facts with us?

jonitanitayturin said...

Brod Divino,

Good that you’ve also noticed Brother Loloy Dinorog, now with FFL, asking permision to use Pader Tulabing’s column for sharing by FFL in Cagyan de Oro City. It is certainly pathetic, knowing the intellectual depth of Brod Loloy.

Anyway, last July 16, I posted this in the “Voices of Faith and Reaon" thread here:


Brod Loy Dinorog of Cagayan de Oro FFL, naluoy ko nimo nga diha ka pa manguha ug topic ninyo sa FFL for sharing kang Pader Tulabing; sus, Brod, hibawo ra ba gayud ko nga lawom-lawom kag panghunahuna. Pag-source gud ug lain dinhi sa IDOTRCFC, pagkadaghan dinhi nga imong magamit, Brod. Intawon...Mingaw ko nimo. God Bless (Brother Loloy Dinorog of Cagayan de Oro FFL, I lament that you will source your FFL topic for sharing from (the work of) Fr. Tulabing. Well, I know you are high-minded, so do get from better sources like IDOTRCFC. There's plenty of them here that you can use, Brother. What a pity...I miss you. God Bless.)”

WillyJ said...

Pope Benedict XVI gives a proper orientation on ecumenism, in his recent address to Christian leaders in Sydney on July 18, said:

"We must guard against any temptation to view doctrine as divisive and hence an impediment to the seemingly more pressing and immediate task of improving the world in which we live."
"The road of ecumenism ultimately points towards a common celebration of the Eucharist".

Christians have an immediate task of improving the temporal world, while not losing sight of the ultimate goal of uniting the Church in Christ. Social and spiritual work therefore cannot be at odds. A Christian community can not do one without the other and it is very difficult to determine where one begins and the other ends, much more to determine where one is overemphasized over the other. This is so because they are enmeshed together as a clear representation of the Catholic doctrine of Faith and Works. Working for the improvement of the temporal sphere in accordance to God's plan is something essentially unified and integral with evangelization as social doctrine affirms. To the Reformist, works are important but do not have any salvific value and is therefore, not essential. This is actually central to the division between Catholics and mainline Protestants, who hold on to the 5-Solas doctrine which caused the 16th century schism with the Catholic Church and continues to this day. This however does not mean that we cannot work with Christians of different denominations in the immediate task of "improving the world".

May I venture my two cents on the "fullness of truth", wherein I welcome the correction of Mr. Palad or any of our CFC brethren. The deposit of faith was handed down to the Church, which guards it through the Holy Spirit. Jesus himself promised that Helper, so that He will be with his Church till the end of days. That gives us undeniable guarantee that the Church consistently preserves that deposit, and that Hades will never prevail against it. As revelation has been completed with the death of the last apostle, we can say that the Catholic Church possesses the fullness of truth. Development of doctrine only means that sacred tradition will continue to give us additional opportunities for a deeper understanding, but the essence or substance is already there. As infallibility is also guaranteed by the Holy Spirit, we can also say at the same time that all the Church says (through the Magisterium) is the truth -- taken when the Pope speaks ex-cathedra, and when a synod of bishops in communion with the Pope releases an encyclical which invokes the infallibility clause. Many times, infallibility does not even have to be invoked, as when the magisterium simply reflects a well-entrenched teaching in its 2000++year tradition, and the meaning is just expounded more fully over time. Arrogance has nothing to do with it, the Holy Spirit simply protects the Church from errors, as Christ promised.

Indeed, we do not have the monopoly of the truth, although the Church still maintains that the Holy Catholic Church is the only ONE true path to salvation. Since Vatican II's Gaudium et Spes, a more profound meaning has been established, that one can discover and live out the truth without physically being inside the Catholic Church(assuming there is no opportunity to be in visible communion), meaning that you can be a faithful follower by means of conscience and the sincere desire to seek God. It is very difficult for me to explain. I suppose Mr. Palad will articulate this properly.

With respect to the CFC mileu, it has been said that it is largely experiential. We do have numerous formation tracks and special teachings at every level, but from my experience, they do not expound on the finer points of doctrine but rather illustrates the Catholic way from a sharing point of view: the living-out of our Faith. There may conceivably be a danger here, doctrine-wise, and it is up to our leaders and spiritual advisers to guard against those. We at least have an assurance on intentions and commitment, in as much as a major theme as professed by CFC today is being "One with the Catholic Church". Likewise, there could conceivably be a "relativistic attitude towards Catholic doctrine so prevalent in certain sectors in CFC-GK", and we should be terrified as well. Even though it may be posited that such do not define the general characteristic of GK but are isolated instances, it is comforting that the IC already went on record to say it remains committed to investigating and correcting these errors in GK if any of them are established. IC has adopted the correct posture when instructed by the Vatican. GK should welcome corrections, at the same time it remains that the continued Vatican recognition affirms that such errors do not characterize, and do not form a basis of invalidating the charism of GK as a whole. CFC will always have problems while pursuing its charisms, which is only proper to our imperfect nature. But as Pope Benedict says, when he addressed the Congress of the Pontifical Council of the Laity last May:

.."Those who are called to the service of discernment and leadership, should not lord it over the charisms, but should rather beware of the danger of suffocating them, resisting the temptation to make uniform that which the Spirit willed to be multiform to concur in the building up and the enlargement of the one Body of Christ, that the same Spirit makes firm in unity."..

Sori po, napahaba,
- WillyJ

Anonymous said...

I feel more confident now to deal with the “phenomenon” of Mr. Padilla, and this is the most significant germ that IDOTRCFC has infected in a person like me. I mean, I don’t really feel I miss this guy at all, given that the available circumstances about his abandonment of CFC in February last year have been made clear. I can also temper my hatred for the same man because of the objective presentation of facts here. I can hold onto my own counter attacks because the IDOTRCFC Blog has also become a virtual “home” where bloggers must show respect for each other as in a household meeting.

Thus, after a year of expounding our thoughts and using them to assert our positions to defend the Original CFC, perhaps we can design a common program or agenda to bring back to CFC those in FFL who are willing to work with us together again, or anyone willing to be part of CFC.

I suggest that perhaps Brother Carlos Palad help draft the “academic / philosophical / spiritual” underpinnings of the said Program. Using his own experience where he now can express himself in this Blog, why not a kind of cyber program to invite interested brothers and sisters to small-group discussions. I am sure we can form cyber warriors or defenders as “outreach” workers in various sites and facilitate the coming together or “training” of those interested to discuss, investigate, or learn more about ourselves. Meaning, as we get acquainted here in the Blog, we can continue to come face to face and engage in a CLP type of enrichment in our relationship with Jesus. Much like the home- or coffee-based natural, friendly gathering of friends when the first CLPs were started, perhaps our acquaintance here in the blog can evolve to some kind of Christian Life Program, too? And the same may start with CFC members who are willing to “return”.

Just some thoughts…

Anonymous said...

mga kapatid! di ba approved na ng Vatican yang mga CLP at ibang formation teaching manuals ng CFC? bakit meron pang mag question na hindi catholic ang author ng mga ginamit natin teaching materials? natandaan paba ninyo ang Purpose Driven Life na libro ni Nick Warren na isang Protestant? ang mga sulat nya ay very Catholic! kaya it was publicly recommended by Mons. Monsanto of Cagayan de Oro in one of our Provincial assemblies years ago! and we even used it during HH meetings in our sharing! Minsan kasi sa subrang talino ng tao lahat nalang questionin? May kasama kami sa HH dito sa LA na ganon! pero inalalayan lang namin at unti unti naming pinakalma at sana tuloytuloy na ito. May God bless us all!

2k2k said...

To Brod. Loloy D. of CDO!

Pangayo pod ug permission to share the articles of Bishop Claver to share in FFL Cagayan de Oro! Share it also Loy para maka hibawo pod tawon sila sa mga panghitabo! Labina sa mga positions sa mga Bishops! Labina na tong gikan ni Cardianal Rylko, " No other association can use your name...." Saludo jud ko nimo kon imo na i-share sa ila! Gamay raman mo ba? Bisan gani usa-usahon nimo na sila hatag kopya kaya rana nimo kay diman mo daghan! May God bless us all!

jonitanitayturin said...

CD, TE, WillyJ, Deo, Carlos, ALL:

Once again,

I park myself under a cool shade here... makisilong ako dito... I joyfully draw sweet water to quench my thirst…aaahh, thank you!

I affirm I am in good company and I partake of the most 'satisficing' of discourses, issue after an exceedingly-elucidating issue. I may now hesitate to open my mouth any further than express a fearful reverence for the joy and enlightenment of the Holy Spirit. Brother WillyJ there has been wont to say, "Spot on!", as every one of them (they do know who they are) conveyed the most valued and compulsive pieces of human, yet Spirit-inspired opiniona, all cast in stone to be a bedrock of our Original CFC.

Brothers and Sisters, I hear music by our coming together to thank our God Almighty for His Wond’rous Deeds, for His Infinite Goodness and Kindness, for inspiring CD to initiate this 'institutional' search for Truth, this most useful, equalizing, liar-bashing Blog.


Many thanks that I can now move ahead… refreshed and rearmed...and most confident in God's Love and Wisdom… in Your company, O "KINDRED spirits in search of truth, ” ALL OF YOU, most honoured Brothers and Sisters blogging here … and yes, a number, too, whom I especially salute for extraordinarily enlivening a good REASON for a vigorous FAITH: there’s CD of course, and TE, and WillyJ, and Deo... you’re coming in, Brother Carlos…


Deo Volente said...

jonitanitayturin, adtu ko Cagayan de Oro karung Agusto. ara unta ug maka-bisita sa GK site. Tan-awun naku unsa ka tinood o kabakak ang mga sulti-sulti. Ayo-ayo lang! God bless!

(jonitanitayturin, going to Cagayan de Oro in August. hopefully will be able to visit a GK site. wanna see how true or false some things are. Take care! God bless!)

Anonymous said...

Bitaw, Brother Toktok:

Usa ra man ka household silang Brother Loloy sa FFL. Their small number will make it easy for him to reproduce materials here like:

- the detailed discussion of CFC charism - by TE or Anonymous

- Monsignor Claver's article

- all the comments in Voices of Faith and Reason

Also, their small group may look into all the contents of IDOTRCFC together for further information.

jonitanitayturin said...

Hi, there, Brod Deo:

By all means, do come and visit GK sites here. You will find that the CFC Center of Cagayan de Oro sits right adjacent to the GK Pasil (Sitio Pasil) in Barangay Kauswagan - toward Bonbon Beach.

You will not miss the CFC center because the "pahina" and "padugo" of CFC in the past years made possible the construction of a 2-storey multi-purpose center in a close-to-a-hectare del Fierro family-donated property (Bro. Alfonso Jun del Fierro is the incumbent Provincial Area Director) where about four other single-storey buildings (for training in garments, food and related technololgy, as well as the medical clinic and a sibol school) dot around a small man-made lake.

The GK village adjacent to the Center is a piece of heaven on earth here in Cagayan de Oro City. Do come visit. They are all brothers and sisters there, Brother Deo. Let's come together when you are here, Brod. You may also want to join a HH group discussion.

(Incidentally, Bro. 2K2K basig gusto nimo mahimamat si Bro. Deo, US-based pero he comes from about a town or two away from Cagayan de Oro City. Brod Deo, si Bro 2K2K -- -- is a full time GK worker in Misamis Oriental. He's been in NY for a couple of weeks already.)

WillyJ said...

Good news
, and a very interesting one to boot.

A hat tip to Carlos Palad for pointing out to the Catholic blogosphere a truly blessed event:

The Transalpine Redemptorists has been restored to good canonical standing.

According to Wiki, they were previously affiliated with the traditionalist Catholic Society of St. Pius X; however, after petitioning the Holy See for reconciliation in June 2008, Pope Benedict XVI accepted their petition and declared them in "canonical good standing" within the Roman Catholic Church.

That's the best part. Cheers!

And now, a minor though interesting matter:

According to Carlos:
In consultation with the Holy See, the "Transalpine Redemptorists" have changed their name to "Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer" (Filii Sanctissimi Redemptoris). Henceforth they will use the initials "F.SS.R".

Good move, Fathers, ostensibly to avoid confusing their group with the Redemptorist Fathers.

The homepage of the Transalpine Redemptorists ( ) explains further:

For those who did not know: The reason we need to change our name is that the Redemptorist Fathers claim exclusive rights to the title: "Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer;" the initials or siglum, "C.SS.R." and the nickname "Redemptorist". Our nickname will be chosen later.

Changing our name then is an obligation that we have accepted as God's will for us.

FAP should learn a thing or two from the Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer.

jonitanitayturin said...


I side with the apparently exasperated view of the anonymous blogger who bewails the needless scrutiny of CFC teaching materials which had already been reviewed and approved by the Vatican. On the other hand, I also note the precaution suggested by the apologist Carlos and WillyJ, that CFC could be treading on the “dangerous” by focusing on the ‘experiential milieu’ or ‘living out the faith’ approach while stranding the finer points of the (Catholic) ‘doctrine’.

From experience, I find that living out our faith and sharing about them has not failed any member of the CFC community that I know of. In fact, there were times when I thought that “doctrinal nuggets” could be culled out from earnest sharing on such topics as Divine Providence, Christian Faith, and Hope in God.

I do have in mind the Biblical account of the miracle in Jerusalem when, in less than a day, Peter, the everyday fisherman, convinced 3,000 people to convert to Christ as they listened to him speak about Him in their own languages!

Thus, closer to home, I find wisdom in the diminutive Protestant former Health Minister of the Philippine’s Department of Health, rural Doctor Juan Flavier, whose byword was: “JUST DOH IT!”

YES, let the CFC members’ experience of Jesus in their daily lives express the real, lived-out teachings of the Christian faith! Let their actions speak, or let them ‘walk their talk’! For therein will lie the most authentic ‘milieu’ from which the intellectuals will append doctrinal connotations… In the end, it is best to act one’s Christianity than just talking and rationalizing about it...

Anonymous said...

WillyJ, Caloy, may the blessing that you both are to us here be known by others who hunger for the Spirit...

I find this discourse extremely refreshing. Perhaps CD was prescient in calling this thread Questioning Faith. In any case, I really appreciate this discussion here and hope that many others join in and continue this. I say this because understanding our faith is part of our obligation as Catholics.

I am not saying that we should all become doctrinal experts. The Cathecism of the Catholic Church says it clearly thus:

"The Church forcefully and specifically exhorts all the Christian faithful... to learn the
surpassing knowledge of Jesus Christ, by frequent reading of the divine Scriptures. Ignorance of the Scriptures is ignorance of Christ."

The following, I think, are also relevant:

"In order that the full and living Gospel might always be preserved in the Church the apostles left bishops as their successors. They gave them their own position of teaching authority."

Indeed, "the apostolic preaching, which is expressed in a special way in the inspired books, was to be preserved in a continuous line of succession until the end of time." This living transmission, accomplished in the Holy Spirit, is called Tradition, since it is distinct from Sacred Scripture, though closely connected to it. Through Tradition, "the Church, in her doctrine, life and worship, perpetuates and transmits to every generation all that she herself is, all that she believes."

The Magisterium of the Pastors of the Church in moral matters is ordinarily exercised in catechesis and preaching, with the help of the works of theologians and spiritual authors. Thus from generation to generation, under the aegis and vigilance of the pastors, the "deposit" of Christian moral teaching has been handed on, a deposit composed of a characteristic body of rules, commandments, and virtues proceeding from faith in Christ and animated by charity.

The Roman Pontiff and the bishops are "authentic teachers, that is, teachers endowed with the authority of Christ, who preach the faith to the people entrusted to them, the faith to be
believed and put into practice."

The ordinary and universal Magisterium of the Pope and the bishops in communion with him teach the faithful the truth to believe, the charity to practice, the beatitude to hope for.

"The law of God entrusted to the Church is taught to the faithful as the way of life and truth. The faithful therefore have the right to be instructed in the divine saving precepts that purify judgment and, with grace, heal wounded human reason. They have the duty of observing the constitutions and decrees conveyed by the legitimate authority of the Church. Even if they concern disciplinary matters, these determinations call for docility in charity.

In the work of teaching and applying Christian morality, the Church needs the dedication of pastors, the knowledge of theologians, and the contribution of all Christians and men of good will. Faith and the practice of the Gospel provide each person with an experience of life "in Christ," who enlightens him and makes him able to evaluate the divine and human realities according to the Spirit of God. Thus the Holy Spirit can use the humblest to enlighten the learned and those in the highest positions.

We, as Catholics, have a right to be instructed in the doctrines, regardless of how intellectually "heavy" they are,and the duty to observe the content of that instruction. This is part of the truth which we are to practice.

Bottom line? As we see our life in CFC as an "experience of life in Christ", this must be grounded in Faith and the practice of the Gospel. And this is exactly what the Church imparts to us, through tradition, in the Magisterium. However, the Spirit's enlightenment is personal. It is entirely up to the Spirit who gets enlightened, whom to enable to "evaluate the divine and human
realities according to the Spirit of God." So at any given moment, we may have differing levels of understanding. Some of us may become doctrinal experts. Most of us may not. It is nonetheless our obligation to study and learn and understand the Church's teachings so we may apply them correctly.

CFC may be largely experiential, but it is by no means that alone.

It is also interesting to note that the text, referring to the work of teaching and applying Christian morality, talks about the Church needing, among others, the contribution of all Christians and men of good will.

Who is included in the grouping "men of good will"? Could this imply something related to us not having a monopoly on truth?

- TE

WillyJ said...

Hi TE!
It is good to hear from you always.
My fallible answer to your question: No, and I say that only in the context of that Catechism excerpt of yours. The Magisterium gets inputs from various sources, and one of them is "Sensus Fidelium", or sense of the faithful. Funny, I came across just that term this morning while I got to reading Rina Jimenez David's opinion column in the Inquirer. A vocal "pro-choice" advocate, she used it to justify dissent to Humanae Vitae. Of course she doesn't know what she's talking about, since Lumen Gentium (#12) says that "It is exercised under the guidance of the sacred teaching authority, in faithful and respectful obedience to which the people of God accepts that which is not just the word of men but truly the word of God". Anyway, it is interesting to note that Pope Paul VI actually went against the majority recommendations of a group of Bishops tasked to make a
study on contraceptives. So much so for plurality. And I say these loud, "pro-choice", "pro-quality" advocates are crazy...I mean misguided, and we should pray for them...
Also, the "experiential" in CFC is just fine with me, I have no problem with that, and I go by the essence of Joni's comments. After all, I think that's probably the best way to get the message across for most. It's not any wonder that Jesus didn't limit His ministry to teachings in synagogues but actually went about to make wine, expel demons, cure the sick, multiply bread and fish. But for elders/leaders, I guess a solid theological/doctrinal grounding is mandatory. Just my opinions though.

jonitanitayturin said...


Thank you, TE and WillyJ. I quote here our views on the matter:

“...let the CFC members’ experience of Jesus in their daily lives express the real, lived-out teachings of the Christian faith! Let their actions speak, or let them ‘walk their talk’! For therein will lie the most authentic ‘milieu’ from which the intellectuals will append doctrinal connotations…” - jonitanitayturin

“...As we see our life in CFC as an "experience of life in Christ", this must be grounded in Faith and the practice of the Gospel... It is... our obligation to study and learn and understand the Church's teachings so we may apply them correctly. CFC may be largely experiential, but it is by no means that alone.” - TE

“..the "experiential" in CFC is just fine with me, I have no problem with that, and I go by the essence of Joni's comments. After all, I think that's probably the best way to get the message across for most...But for elders/leaders, I guess a solid theological/ doctrinal grounding is mandatory.” - WillyJ

Yes, Tradition has enabled our Catholic Church to preserve and transmit the tenets of living the Gospel in accord with the Apostolic teachings. So, it will be most reasonable to maintain a good balance of doctrine and practice in CFC. Towards this end (and with which I propose to end this particular 'thread'), it may be good to muse aloud that a methodical plan for grounding CFC leaders in Church theology and doctrine will be good for CFC "in the long haul", to quote a blogger. This blog opinion will hope to compliment related concerns taken up in the Pastoral Conference.

Just one more word on the matter here...

I imagine a no-ordinary warehouse with “deposits” of traditional moral teachings about the Law of God, which is “the way of life and truth”, with curricula or catecheses stretching the entire person’s life, at least. The moral teachings are rules, commandments, and virtues proceeding from “faith in Christ and animated by charity”. I take this to mean faith practiced in charity, which is also faith in action through GK!

On Man’s Fate and “Docility in Charity’

Quoted by TE:
“The faithful therefore have the right to be instructed in the divine saving precepts that purify judgment and, with grace, heal wounded human reason. They have the duty of observing the constitutions and decrees conveyed by the legitimate authority of the Church. Even if they concern disciplinary matters, these determinations call for docility in charity.”

Adam, our foreparent, cursed human reason to woundedness, as our thoughts could not be made right because of Sin, except if by God’s grace and mercy, except if He allows us to appreciate things with His Wisdom. Notwithstanding our liberation from Sin by the suffering of our Lord Jesus, Adam’s curse continues to hound and haunt the choices and predispositions of both the faithful and the legitimate Church authority. Case in point is the break-up of CFC.

I believe the phrase “docility in charity” here is not a one-way street. The exercise of Church authority must be fair, magnanimous and a model of charity, as much as the CFC faithful must lovingly obey the commands of the Church hierarchy.

Anonymous said...

Willy, TE (hi there, Carlos):

That remark about man, or we being fated to "Adam's curse" that caused the woundedness of human reason was an "off-the-cuff" opinion (bow ako, Carlos) I made in connection with that quote by TE. Wala akong philosophical or doctrinal basis nito. (I have no philosohical nor doctrinal basis for this.) It is just a personal opinion about the effect of the "blight" or curse on First Man Adam that was passed on down through generations. I am not familiar of a theological teaching that says the blight was totally obliterated by the Holy Cross of our Redeemer. I may be wrong, but my impression is that, despite being restored, which means being able to claim sonship of God through Jesus Christ, human freedom still influences a person's choices: heaven and righteousness, or hell/devil and the evil he represents - include his "exhibit number #1: Adam's curse". Once more, this is just an impression which you may attribute with some "poetic justice". Puede? Tnx.

- jonitanitayturin

WillyJ said...

Your "off-the-cuff", is "on-the-mark".

By baptism, the Holy Spirit washes away the original sin with the grace of Christ's passion and resurrection, and we join the body of Christ, his Church. Although we are redeemed by the risen Lord, we are still wounded by the evil of concupiscence which is only proper to our human nature. Thus we should work out our salvation "in fear and trembling", resolve to "fight the good fight" and "run the good race" to the end. God helps us along the way, by gifting us with graces, among which is the gift of community where we draw our strength and encouragement.

BTW, I just came earlier from the Humanae Vitae 40th year anniversary held at the UST grounds. It was a spirit-filled event, with talks, lively presentations, sharings, and was capped by the Holy Mass concelebrated by bishops. It was a profound sermon delivered by Archbishop Angel Lagdameo, and
I remember the essence of his homily:

"Being Pro-Life is being Pro-God...and being Pro-God is being Pro-Poor".

Thanks, Archbishop Lagdameo.

C.D. said...


I hope you don't mind, I'm hanging on to your comment before approval to study the possibilities. Do you mind dropping me an email?

Thanks and God bless,


Anonymous said...

Calling Bro Carlos Palad.

Bro. Dante’s “inferno” is just around the corner as he “loses paradise” in a confusion about Bishop Villegas, who officiated the Church wedding of a major sponsor of a local anti-life bill for Quezon City. He is in limbo about whether the concept of right or wrong just depends on the mood of a pastor like Bishop Villegas.

Bro. Dante recalls Bishop Villegas’ hardly-saleable catechism books being bought wholesale by CFC through a “Snow white” (apparently a special assistant to FAP). Said Bishop strongly backed up FAP’s accusation that CFC veered away from its Catholic mission and vision immediately after he (FAP) voluntarily gave up the top CFC leadership position (that was a puzzlement!), and after losing a tactical maneuver for a comeback either through or by scuttling the regular elections.

Bro. Dante has other points of interest in his comments there in “Boom De Ah Dah”. He concludes:

“…I can not stand the duplicity of our Church leaders, both lay and clergy… I will remain respectful of them but I will continue to question ang kanilang duplicitous mssages.”

I wonder if Carlos Palad, the then-harassed apologist, can shed some of his thoughts about duplicity in general and by the clergy in cahoots with scheming lay faithful, in particular.

Anonymous said...

hi, carlos, your intellectual depth about duplicitous clergy will be keenly noted, given your wide experience in catholic apology.

may you group the bishop (villegas) with those who did you in by blasting your comments in cyberspace without your permission? or do we commit sin by thinking like this about them? how?

WillyJ said...

Allow me to venture my two cents on this duplicity issue. Please bear with the length.

The Catholic Church claims that its teaching is infallible, but it does not claim that its people are indefectible. The prime apostle Peter himself exhibited many frailties and was even rebuked by Paul once for his doubtful action among the Gentiles. Even in the history of the papacy, there were so-called "bad popes" who were considered corrupt. But it is to the credit of the Church that these bad popes never came out with crazy doctrines, and they never were the source of any heresy. This is a positive testimony to the infallibility charism given to the Church through the Pope and Councils acting in unison with the Pope. It is a negative charism, meaning the Holy Spirit guarantees the Pope or Council in unity with the Pope to be free from errors when infallibility is explicitly invoked.

There will be duplicity or contradictions among prelates, even on matters of faith and morals, but this does not contradict the fact that the Church Magisterium has been consistent throughout the ages. Contrast that with our separated Christian brethren who are scattered into thousands of divergent denominations, each claiming their own "correct" interpretation of Scriptures. The Catholic Church remains united. The combination of consensual and authoritative characteristics in the Church hierarchy asserts itself on purpose and is always in a position for righteous correction when circumstances warrant.

Canon 749 states:
(1) In virtue of his office the Supreme Pontiff is infallible in his teaching when, as chief Shepherd and Teacher of all Christ's faithful, with the duty of strengthening his brethren in the faith, he proclaims by definitive act a doctrine to be held concerning faith or morals.
(2) The College of Bishops also possesses infallibility in its teaching when the Bishops, gathered together in an Ecumenical Council and exercising their Magisterium as teachers and judges of faith and morals, definitively declare for the universal Church a doctrine to be held concerning faith or morals; likewise, when the Bishops, dispersed throughout the world but maintaining the bond of union among themselves and with the successor of Peter, together with the same Roman Pontiff authentically teach matters of faith or morals, and are agreed that a particular teaching is definitively to be held.

Now as far as the laity is concerned,
Canon 212.3 states:
(3)They have the right, indeed at times the duty, in keeping with their knowledge, competence and position, to manifest to the sacred Pastors their views on matters which concern the good of the Church. They have the right also to make their views known to others of Christ's faithful, but in doing so they must always respect the integrity of faith and morals, show due reverence to the Pastors and take into account both the common good and the dignity of individuals.

Now with respect to that matter of Councilor Juico's wedding officiated by Bishop Villegas, there appears to arise the question of worthiness in receiving communion, with the circumstance of Councilor Juico being the sponsor of an ordinance in Quezon City which among other things, promotes artificial contraceptives.
Then Cardinal Ratzinger, as head of the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith, issued a directly related memorandum which states in part:

"Apart from an individual's judgment about his worthiness to present himself to receive the Holy Eucharist, the minister of Holy Communion may find himself in the situation where he must refuse to distribute Holy Communion to someone, such as in cases of a declared excommunication, a declared interdict, or an obstinate persistence in manifest grave sin".

In Juico's case, there is no declared excommunication, nor a known interdict. A case may be made of him being in an "obstinate persistence in manifest grave sin". But the question still remains whether it constitutes a feigned ignorance of a lack of understanding, as a mortal sin is defined if it entails full knowledge and consent. Apparently, Bishop Villegas in his judgement has given him the benefit of the doubt, and it is hard to question that. We are not aware whether he has been counseled prior to the wedding to take a more conscientious attitude with the view to making reparations, as this might have conceivably transpired during the pre-marriage canonical interview. We simply do not know, and in the absence of hard facts we take a prudent view of the matter. God will eventually judge his conscience. I just want to personally express my extreme disappointment with Councilor Joseph Juico, him professedly being a devout Catholic. His talent, resources, position and devotion seems grievously misdirected in the manner of his advocacy of artificial contraceptives. I wish that the passion and ardor he professes for local governance issues is matched, nay surpassed, by the ardor and passion of studying and understanding the tenets of the Faith, and most importantly - putting it into action. For this he sorely needs pastoral guidance. May God help him.

I go back to the issue of duplicity and our proper attitude towards it.

It is the laity's obligation to build up the body of Christ. It is acceptable for the laity to objectively question towards this end, but it must be done with respect and in the correct spirit of seeking maturity as a follower of Christ - to grow more in the knowledge of love of God and neighbor.

God bless.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Bro Willy. You have come up with very solid doctrinal/canonical footnotes to the question of duplicitous members of the clergy..

Is there a way to review the secular-spiritual act of a bishop? Is there a tribunal in which we can lodge some concerns, complaints, or accusations against the bishop? I was concerned that Bp Reyes was not fit to be SD of CFC; I wanted to complain that he was being used in Antipolo by FAP as much as his long letter-advisories were distinctly FAP’s; and I wanted to accuse Bp Reyes of incompetence for being unable to help the flock distinguish between “obeying” an order and “following” a recommendation. Further, based on past observations, the ‘conference’ or association of Philippine, called CBCP, is NOT in the position to discuss and decide on any personal concern against a bishop. More concretely, we are informed that no one among the bishops can prevent anyone from acknowledging the formation and growth of a breakaway group like FFL from his area of jurisdiction, in the same manner that a bishop may not fully implement a resolution about such group even if jointly approved by them in a caucus. In short, “each bishop is an independent republic”.

Now, about Bp Villeges.

He and Bp Reyes can seem to easily get away from the “hook”. Since we can allow Bp Villeges benefit of the doubt for the underlying reasons that led to his public act of officiating the sacrament of matrimony for “anti-lifer” Juico, the same mental reservation may also be accorded Bp Reyes.

We wonder about the wisdom of wishing negatively on the lay person/s concerned (e.g., for the lack of depth of faith on the part of Juico) while giving ample space for the laity’s ‘beneficent’ doubts on the hierarchy. Of course this is not a defense of Juico because we’d rather that he did not seek Church benediction of his wedding while he strongly cradles local government bills that contradict Church teachings. It is just an attempt to help level the views or level the blues regarding the clergy and the laity.

jonitanitayturin said...

Brother Willy, nagbibiro ka ata...

“But it is to the credit of the Church that these bad popes never came out with crazy doctrines, and they never were the source of any heresy”.

If, in effect, crazy church doctrines – were there, indeed? - could emanate or emanated from sane popes, while the “bad popes” sanely did nothing crazy, at least we’d know who to start looking at for the craze and heresy. But then....

C’mon, Bro, you know better than this...

I suppose a crazed papal doctrine must emanate from a bad or crazy pope. As they say, "By the fruits..." (Yet I agree...mukhang non-sequitor ako dito, ah, because: "bad popes never came out with crazy doctrines", which does not necessarily mean the good ones did!)

(You know, I enjoy the mental drift and spoof here, of popes giving “crazy” doctrines, ha-ha! I have a hunch you are aware there is something “crazy in this line, too”, but you are putting it to some test... Hey, you would quickly be contrite when using this word earlier, Bro, but here you seem to enjoy it, or putting it to some test...oy-ooyy-oooyyy. So let me: “In the name of Jesus, we cast out the negative humour about c__zy popes... Amen!”)

Thank you, Lord, for the gift of Brother Willy, through whose wisdom, things are made clearer for us...

Anonymous said...

Willyj, Joni, what shall we make of these? Quoted from

Pope Adrian VI († 1523) stated that “it is beyond question” that a pope can “err in matters touching the Faith”, he can “teach heresy” in decrees. He also stated “many Roman Pontiffs were heretics”.

“If by the Roman Church you mean its head or pontiff, it is beyond question that he can err even in matters touching the faith. He does this when he teaches heresy by his own judgement or decretal. In truth, many Roman pontiffs were heretics. The last of them was Pope John XXII († 1334).” (Quaest. in IV Sent.; quoted in Viollet, Papal Infallibility and the Syllabus, 1908).*

Pope Honorius I († 638) was not merely “accused of heresy” or “anathematised by the Eastern Churches”: he was anathematised as a heretic by the ecumenical Council of III Constantinople, whose Acts were confirmed by Pope Leo II († 683).

“We foresaw that, together with them, also Honorius, before Pope of Old Rome, is cast out of the Holy Catholic Church of God and anathematized, for we have found by his writings sent to [the heretic] Sergius, that he followed the thinking of the latter in everything, and continued his impious principles. [...] To Sergius, the heretic, anathema! To Cyrus, the heretic, anathema! To Honorius, the heretic, anathema!”

- TE

Anonymous said...


C'mon Bro Carlos, what's your take here?

I think TE's call for clearheadedness stays.

It is certainly a gift and grace in being able to laugh at past mistakes and see God's truth through all of them. On the other hand, Bro. Willy was looking at duplicitous clergy from a different angle; absent that one on the the "cr__y" pope, we have a solid case with him.

Perhaps Bro. Carlos can patch that pot-holed byway we are walking through in a "papal connection" -- from the ordinary bishop (like Bp Villegas) to the Bishop of Rome.

Maganda yung ginawa mo, Bro.TE. You can be certain we have a good laugh. God Bless.


WillyJ said...

Anonymous of 13:55 8/6/2008,
Thank you bro.
The Church hierarchy being flat, the bishop is accountable only to the Pope in church disciplinary matters. In our particular situation re Bp Reyes, therefore we may seek redress through the Roman Curia (who acts administratively in behalf of the Pope). That is the Pontifical Council of the Laity in our case, thru Cardinal Rylko. However, as is normally the practise in any organization, conflicts are preferably resolved at the lowest possible level, where efforts
are to be exhausted before escalation.
You are right in that “each bishop is an independent republic”. CBCP is a collegial body, they cannot really impose on an individual bishop in his respective diocese. But there is such a thing as fraternal respect in these collegial bodies and resolutions are normally done by consensus (not by simple majority), and so it will be highly exceptional if a particular bishop goes against a collective position. When there is no collective statement, the same fraternal respect plus canon
law guidelines provides for virtual autonomy to bishops in their respective dioceses.
In the matter of Juico and the 'beneficent' doubts on the hierarchy, it is just our Christian nature to ascribe good intentions as a rule of charitable disposition. That same Christian nature also impels us to seek the objective truth and stand up for it uncompromisingly
when proportionate reasons demand. For this we pray for guidance most importantly.
I hope I didn't confuse you further here, but it is good to go by the adage commonly attributed St Augustine:
"Unity in essentials, liberty in non-essentials, and charity in all".

WillyJ said...

There is a lot of craziness going around. Many are masked by supposed spirituality. Sheep's clothing, you know what I mean :-) So, let us all beware.

I did a quick visit and it looks like the site you just stumbled into is a renegade site (probably
a web site in sheep's clothing too). But I will dig into it further as time permits. For now, its historical claims must be taken with a grain of salt.
I will say that not all the Pope says about faith and morals is infallible. Pope Benedict, as he wrote his book "Jesus of Nazareth" clarified this matter in his foreword. There is a procedure and an explicit wording when this is invoked. This infallibility doctrine is defined in Vatican I. I will dig out my codigos and give more details later if you wish. Thus, a Pope in theory is capable of preaching heresy, but without the provision of infallibility it can never find its way into the Magisterium, which is the Church's official teaching authority. Any heresy can be quickly unmasked in the Church. It is the beauty of the Catholic Church that no Pope or Council may contradict a previously universally accepted Church doctrine. It is also taken that Sacred Tradition serves Sacred Scripture and may not contradict it likewise. This is not to say that the bible is all-inclusive, it is just that Sacred Tradition may not contradict it. Rest assured that it only the Holy Roman Catholic and Apostolic Church that traces its lineage in an unbroken line of succession from St Peter up to to todays Pope Benedict XVI. Apostolic succession is a hallmark of our Faith, where the deposit of faith is preserved and guarded. Christ promised
the "Paraclete", "to the end of days" so the Church will be free from errors and the "gates of Hades will never prevail". Christ never fails on that promise.

God bless.

jonitanitayturin said...

Since all our questions and discourses here are meant to build the body of Christ, I want to restate this line from Bro. Willy:

“...It is acceptable for the laity to objectively question towards this end, but it must be done with respect and in the correct spirit of seeking maturity as a follower of Christ - to grow more in the knowledge of love of God and neighbor.”

God Bless.

WillyJ said...

Brother TE,
My suspicions are confirmed. is NOT
a faithful site, in spite of its name. According to Fr. John Zuhlsdorf (well-known as Father_Z to Catholic bloggers): The site you looked at is a so-called "traditionalist" site, but "traditionalist" in the very worst sense. You stumbled into a group that doesn't want to admit that this present Pope is really the Pope...
Father_Z adds: "In short, this is really kooky stuff."
Now if we look up the meaning of "kooky" in the dictionary, it means: crazy. The full text of Father_Z's assessment in the Catholic Online Forum is found here.
Btw, Father_Z maintains a great blog "What Does The Prayer Really Say". It won the 2008 Catholic Blog Awards as Best Apologetics blog, best Overall Catholic blog, and Best blog by Clergy. Tons of great reading there. I also point our brothers to "Rorate Caeli", a highly esteemed blog where Carlos Palad is a regular contributor.

WillyJ said...

More on bad popes...

With CD's indulgence and all you kindred spirits out there, I am posting my codigo here regarding the "bad popes". Sorry I was not able to save and remember the originator-link, I just kept this soft copy text for quite a is the unedited article.
Most certainly there have been bad Popes throughout history. Historians would say there have been about 12 popes out of 266 were morally corrupt. Benedict IX was a rotten Pope from 1032-1045 AD. He became Pope in his late teens and early 20's and was kind of like me in my early 20's, running around with many different women. He incited a riot in Rome because the people were fed up with him. Probably the worst pope was Alexander VI (1492-1503). He had several illigitimate children before and during his reign as pope. He was into bribery, deceit, debauchery and anything else you could imagine. Pope Innocent VII (1484-1492) and Pope Leo X (1513-1521) were from the Borgia and Medici families which were kind of like the Sopranos of the middle ages. They were infamous in Italy. These three popes contributed significantly to the unrest that led to the Reformation.

The Reformation did not escape many of the same kinds of corruptions that it was accusing Catholic courts of practicing. Martin Luther was disgusted with the conduct of many of fellow protestants who had authority. Church historian John Laux writes: his own Wittenberg, where Protestant Princes confiscated the wealthiest bishopbrics and monasteries for their own use…while the preachers often suffered the direst want. Irreligiousness, immortality and vices of all sorts flourished...

In a 1545 letter to his wife Martin Luther writes about the Reform...

Let us get out of this Sodom. I prefer to wander about homeless and to beg my bread from door to door than to poison my poor last days by the spectacle of all these disorders. We experience it daily that the people are seven times worse today than ever before under the Papacy; they are more avaricious, more unchaste, more envious, more intemperate, more dishonest... [John Laux, CHURCH HISTORY, p.431]

Some will point to the bad popes as proof that God did not institute the Papacy with Peter. The Catholic Church claims that its teaching is infallible, but it does not claim that its people are not indefectible. Even Jesus chose a bad disciple, Judas. We don't say "Hey Jesus can't be the Saviour, he had a bad disciple." Ten of the diciples desserted him. What is really amazing regarding the bad popes is that they stayed silent of issues of faith and morals. They could have defined all kinds of crazy doctrines in the name of their teaching authority, but they didn't. Catholics think this is a testimony in favour of the Papacy. These bad popes did not define any doctrines. Catholics think this is part of God's infallibility promise. Not only will God direct popes in their teaching, but He'll also shut them up about dumb (heretical) teaching too. Catholics believe God protected his Church during those periods when there were bad popes. We believe He meant what He said: are Peter and upon this rock I will build my Church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of Heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in Heaven and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. (Mat 16:18)

It should be noted that 78 popes are Canonized Saints and 10 more are beatified, which means they were awesome popes.

Anonymous said...

Well, just goes to show that like most everyone, popes and bishops are human beings, too. The problem is when some people purposely put some persons into some 'pedestal' for reason of their distinctive competencies or classes, and put a 'label' to them. which practice we have wanted to avoid and de-emphasize in CFC.

I know someone whose family has a Jesuit priest. I learned the family, particularly the siblings, of the Jesuit priest-brother are so sure that, except for his special vocation and annointment to the Holy Orders, he is just as human as anyone else. Similarly, except when speaking ex cathedra in matters of faith and morals, the pope can be as fallible as any member of the clergy.

Hurray to the label, class, or high value an apologist, like Carlos Palad, may have earned for themselves. Maybe he and those like him are really destined to tangle with "kooky" Catholic traditionalists. So, it could have been so unlike of him to make a quick, "off-the-cuff", knee-jerk, "first-draft apologetics" vis-a-vis a passion for a special kind of social work shared among Ateneo de Manila theology students by a "low-lifers" like TM, which draft he emailed to the usual "suspects". The "draft" hit cyberspace through emails by FFL, with Jack Burgoyne having to bear the brunt of the aplogists' ire, which unjust vexation on him was quickly retracted by Carlos.

Anyway, should Carlos decide to partake of the discussions here, he can be certain that it will have immediately hit the cybersworld through IDOTRCFC, with most, if not all of us willing witnesses and collaborators.

CD, am just feeling uneasy that some esteemed class of apologists may not want to "stoop down on "lesser and perhaps kooky" Catholics here.

Brother Joni, you may now stop expecting precious thoughts or two from the "once-harassed" Carlos.

Anonymous said...

Yo WillJ, Joni and everyone on this thread...

Thanks Willy. I was actually aware of this sedevacantic site and their arguments. They refuse to recognize not only Pope Benedict XVI but all the Popes after Vatican II. That's the reason their view is called sedevacantism - from two latin words that, put together, means "The Chair is vacant". They
claim that Vatican II is heretical and they reject the Canon Law of 1983 (modified from the 1917 version) because they claim it allows heretics and non-christians, under certain cirmcumstances, to ask for and be given certain sacraments, including the Sacrament of Healing (anointing of the sick).

I had 2 reasons for posting those quotes. The first is to raise the issue of how a Catholic should respond to movements like sedevacantism and secondly for purely for historical reasons. Pope Honorius was really posthomously anathemized and declared a heretic by the 6th Ecumenical Council. It is historical fact.

My intention is not to derail this thread but I believe that each one of us must come to a clear understanding of these issues guided by the Church's teachings. That there were bad Popes is historical fact. Further the word "bad" can be understood from several viewpoints, which raises at least the concern that "bad" seems to be relative, which in turn can result in other issues a Catholic must, in his own heart, put to rest. For example, history tells us that Pope Urban II called for the first crusade promising that those who die will receive remission of their sins. Was that bad? Does the end justify the means?

1 Peter 3:15-16 says "But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your
good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander."

If we are to be always prepared to give an answer to anyone who asks, I believe we must all be clear on where we stand on these issues, including those in the historical past.

Here's another one for you. The First Vatican Council states that:

“For the Holy Ghost was promised to the successors of Peter not so that they might, by His revelation, make known some new doctrine, but that, by His assistance, they might religiously guard and faithfully expound the revelation or Deposit of Faith transmitted by the Apostles.” (Pastor Aeternus, ch 4, 6)

Does that mean that Popes are not supposed to make new doctrines?

Lastly, regarding Juico. Take a look at this similar (?) case:

- TE

WillyJ said...

Your elucidating points are very much appreciated.

Regarding Pope Honorius, it is true that he was anathemized by the council, but a council's decree is only valid when it is made in union with the Pope. The reigning Pontiff, Leo II, did not agree to the condemnation of his predecessor on the grounds of heresy ,although Leo II condemns his behavior for different reasons. Catholic Answers Forum points out that the council was in error and analyzes the issue succinctly here.
The allegations on Pope John XII and Pope Adrian VI are also convincingly disputed:
All these in no way deters to your valid point that "each one of us must come to a clear understanding of these issues guided by the Church's teachings".

I am not familiar with the story on Pope Urban II although it is a fact that a lot of atrocities in the Inquisitions were made in the name of religion. This is not a fault of religion itself, because in those days the state subsumed religion for political ends.
I surmise that Urban II pronounced his dubious incitement not in ex cathedra, and therefore should not be considered binding on the faithful. It is also very clear in the Cathechism that one may not justify a resultant good from an intinsically evil act. We maintain our stand that the Deposit of Faith has been preserved integrally - in spite of the mortal frailties of men of the Church - due to the ever present power of the Holy Spirit.

On new doctrines. The Catholic Church maintains that no new public revelation has been received by the Church since the time of the Apostles. Any "new" doctrine is more aptly considered as a "development of doctrine", or a deeper understanding of the Faith. St. Thomas Aquinas expounds: "Regarding its substance, then, Faith does not grow with the passage of time, for whatever has been believed since was contained from the start in the Faith of the ancient fathers. As regards its explication, however, the number of articles has increased, for we moderns explicitly believe what they believed implicity"

That controversial matter on Senator Pelosi is widely discussed in Catholic circles. There is ambivalence on the part of her pastors, which is lamentable, as Ms Pelosi presents a clear case of obstinate persistence in manifest grave sin. As speaker of the house, she flaunts her unilateral support for abortion and same-sex marriage. In her particular case, my opinion is that one cannot be unequivocal: she may not receive and must be refused communion. This must be emphasized not only as church disciplinary action but also as pastoral guidance. Back to Juico. Again I maintain that he sorely needs pastoral guidance, but the really appalling thing about that is, he's not even getting it from his parents.

- WillyJ

jonitanitayturin said...


Thank you TE, Willy, and all, for the rational discussions here.

Among other things, I guess it is also about faith and science or science and religion, between the mind and the heart. It is about being blinded as fanatic or being open-minded and a liberal thinker, it is about being petty versus being level-headed.

I had a friend who taught history (facts) and boy could he laugh so loudly and amusedly about himself going to a Mormon Temple every Friday (yeah, I think that was their d-day every week) to pay homage to the worship and belief (largely speculative) of a Mr. Smith landing somewhere in South American to found a New Jerusalem in the Americas, the teachings of which are found in the Book of Mormons. .He said he couldn’t explain or prove the historical claims about the origin of the Book of Mormons, but there he was, faithfully worshipping all that was written on it, only to tell his friends in the academe that, as a historian, he thought it was “crazy” for Mormons, now based in Utah, to teach the bizarre book! That late friend was an American professor from Brigham Young College, so we were told, pursuing some interest on the “Mexican” connection of Dr. Jose Rizal. Bless that friend’s soul... but could he both at once adapt in himself the separate particular contraptions for the spiritual and the secular relative to his faith and morals!

Joseph Juico, primary sponsor of a measure to approve and legislate the use of contraceptives in Quezon City enters the ritual passage to married life through the Catholic Sacrament of Matrimony officiated by no less than avid pro-lifer, Bishop Villegas. The Catholic US Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, a pro-abortionist, says she’s lucky the Bishop of San Francisco is not as strict as the others so she has not yet been denied the Holy Communion. Bishop Reyes of Antipolo doesn’t seem moved any which way by the quoted directive from Vatican’s in-charge of the Pontifical Council of the Laity that the name Couples for Christ shall not be used by any other organization and sticks to his original decision to allow FFL to tuck in the name Couples for Christ in its ID.

In the most recent controversy here in the Philippines where the state secular specialists negotiated peace with “Islamists” to the point of giving more lands to them to constitute a formal “juridical entity” (read: nation-state), the former Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces reportedly threatened a Catholic complainant (who is a vice-governor of an affected province) to the hardly-publicly-discussed scheme of a “homeland”, that if war erupts consequent to the obstacle arising from the complaint, the government’s armed forces will not lift a finger to defend the complaining Christians from the traditionally brutal terrorists -- because peace was to be given a chance to flower via the grant of “juridical entity” to the “Islamists”, which most observers opine is a virtual capitulation to terrorism.

I guess it is really all about facts and clearheadedness versus fanaticism pursuant to faith or being able to wiggle one’s way in between; about good versus bad, or about sanity versus craziness. Now, we’re back to knowing about, or leaning to, what is good or bad after the FALL. Were back in a circle... to ADAM’s CURSE?

jonitanitayturin said...

Thanks, Bro TE, WillyJ, All.

Let me recap:

From TE: "Further the word "bad" can be understood from several viewpoints, which raises at least the concern that "bad" seems to be relative, which in turn can result in other issues a Catholic must, in his own heart, put to rest.”

This was Willy’s earlier comment: “But it is to the credit of the Church that these bad popes never came out with crazy doctrines, and they never were the source of any heresy”.

And Joni’s on Willy: “If, in effect, crazy church doctrines – were there, indeed? - could emanate or emanated from sane popes, while the “bad popes” sanely did nothing crazy, at least we’d know who to start looking [to] for the craze and heresy. But then.... C’mon, Bro, you know better than this...I suppose a crazed papal doctrine must emanate from a bad or crazy pope.”

Yes, Bro TE, in our own heart we can put to rest the relativity of terms like “bad pope”; that is why, we do invoke His Holy Presence, the Holy Spirit to cast away any negative tendencies or dispositions thereon/thereabout so that we can move on peacefully, full of grace and wisdom earned from “sharing” our thoughts here. Salamat, Lord.

We hope that Bro Dante’s “careening” toward “inferno” (he though he was on his way towards there by “losing paradise”) for the perceived duplicity of a man of the cloth like Bishop Villegas will have stopped. On the other hand, we can accord the good bishop some kind of a “beneficent” doubt, for officiating Mr. Juico’s wedding, as explained by Bro. Willy. Furthermore, in assessing a mental drift (whether good or bad) relative to the above discussion, Bro. TE suggests having a sense of history as well as “a clear understanding of the issues guided by the Church's teachings” because we (particularly as CFC, I will add) must be “prepared to give an answer to anyone who asks”.

WHY? From TE, once more: “1 Peter 3:15-16 says ‘But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.’"

About the wholesale purchase of Bishop Villegas’ catechism books by CFC during the time of FAP, that is more or less too dull for an issue here; so, we lift to God the enlightenment of all those who will have subsequently bought or used it.


Anonymous said...







WillyJ said...

Dear Anonymous of 07:10 8/10/2008,

I will take your term of "hatred" as an "off-the-cuff" remark in its proper context - that is of mixed feelings of anger, sadness and disappointment of being "betrayed". In all this, it is worthwhile to ponder what Aristotle says in that "it is the unexpected that reveals the true person"... It is even more worthwhile to ponder what TE said in his charism treatise that "Let us be who we are..That defines us...". Bishop Reyes does not define us. FAP does not define us either. Neither do no Nonong, nor Carlos Palad, nor the multitude of Macias personalities out there.
Take heart bro. God's justice ALWAYS prevails.

Anonymous said...

Joni, WillyJ, everyone,

Thanks for these. Sorry I could not respond right away. Just got back from a short mission trip.

There was a small CFC group (5 couples) 250 Kms away na napabayaan. They were being handled by another unit closer to them and the leaders of that unit went to FFL. Then FFL, without explaining to them ano talagang nangyari, had started inviting them to meetings and such. That seems to be one of their strategy. Iniimbita nila and after a few meetings, naging FFL na din.

This group was not yet covenanted so we went over there to do CO. Their household head was resisting FFL. His argumentation was simple: "I will serve in the community where I received my baptism in the Holy Spirit." Simple lang ho but pregnant with fundamental truths.

FFL's approach has been to get people to say that since it is the same Lord we all serve, it does not really matter whether they go to FFL or CFC meetings. Of course, after going to a few of the FFL meetings, they get to be considered FFL. The reality of the organization is purposely blurred until you wake up one morning realizing you already belong to their organization.

The discussions we've had here that Joni summarized seems to me the macro view, i.e. looking at it from a global church view. These discussions clarified teachings of the Catholic Church. But while the church is also a concept, a spiritual idea subscribed to by a community of believers, it is also an organization. Other Christian denominations also claim to serve the same Lord we do but their organizations are dinstinctly different from the Catholic Church.

What we experienced yesterday was a micro view. That's why it is important not to downplay the organization. When we say we are CFC we are not only talking about a spiritual call or an idea, we are also talking about the organization whose Statutes were approved by the Vatican.

We not only belong to a certain faith, we also belong to the organization that teaches that faith. FFL serves the same Lord as we do but they are a different organization than CFC. Their statutes have not been approved by the Vatican. This is exactly the same as other Christian denominations (Lutherans, etc.) who serve the same Lord as we do but do not belong to the organization called the Catholic Church. As such these denominations may not subscribe to the teachings we have been discussing here, for example the primacy of the Pope. In the same way, FFL does not subscribe to the organizational teachings of CFC, like the authority of the IC.

But the brother who declared that he will serve in the community in which he was baptized implied the organization. The organization that gave him his identity as CFC. By doing so, he was faithful to his covenant which spoke of loyalty to the community and to his brothers and sisters. Sadly, I cannot say that of those who are with FFL.

- TE

jonitanitayturin said...

Bros TE, WillyJ, all:

Since most CLPs that were opened during the 2nd quarter this year may be winding up or are about to finish the 3rd module, the emphasis here about our CFC as a Vatican-approved Catholic charismatic organization is very critical, as critical as the fact that, with the recent breakaway by Mr. Padilla and his poached followers comprised in FFL, one of the most, if not the most “challenging” topics in our CLP now is Talk No. 11: “The Life and Mission of CFC”. Additionally, discussing our own structure is another challenge when teaching about “Unity in Christ” (FCL-12) or “Unity and Disagreement” (LAPG-5), among the many teaching courses of our community.

Before a graduating batch of CLP participants some two weeks ago, I found it a really daunting task to discuss the structure of CFC using the expanded outline. Too, teaching about our unity in Christ in the face of the current situation involved a conscious although heavy effort to avoid emotionally-laden terms or phrases that could give way to uncharitable feelings towards the FFL.

In short, given the current conflicts and confusions, “teaching” about our mission and life in CFC, is very crucial and the CFC resource person involved DOES need a SOLID grounding about the DIFFERENCES between CFC and FFL.

TE, your inputs here is a BIG HELP in providing the needed grounding. I wish CLP Talk #11 were revised to suit the changes that have visited CFC since last year, and that said revision were “institutionalized” soon. I appreciate your highlighting of CFC as a Vatican-approved organization, a distinction that separates it from FFL. Undoubtedly, it makes a lot of sense for a CFC member being taught this way that as a follower of the original, “mainstream” CFC he is securely part of the Vatican-approved organization” of Couples for Christ - which the follower of ‘CFC-FFL’ cannot claim. As such, he must uphold and defer to the primacy of the Chair of Peter (FFL is not obliged to do this), and he must follow the teachings of CFC as approved by the Vatican ( which teachings the FFL follower can reject).


Anonymous said...

Fank Padilla seems confused on how to reconcile with his immediate past...di kaya siya na-ano?...Maybe Bro. Vic S. Cabuquit of North B can help?

Joni is right. The critical stage of our annual, evangelization thru CLP stares as we explain to the potentional new members CFC's life and mission given the break by FFL.

For the CFC-original, CLP Talk #11 - The "Troubled" Life and Mission of Couples for Christ - must be peacefully internalized by every CFC leader and member. It is so crucial that the permanent, steady features of CFC in pursuing its mission (e.g., its being a Catholic, Vatican-approved lay organization) stays as their precious possessions, in the face of a current CFC life that is hallmarked by the classic clash between Good and Evil, between Truth and Lie, and the recent one affecting us at the gut level, CFCGMFI and CFCFI.

Anonymous said...


“Brothers and sisters, our joy is in Christ. But it is more than that. It is actually about the Father’s joy in us. Our theme of joy for this year comes from the book of the prophet Zephaniah. And here we see that it is our God who rejoices over us (Zep 3:17). God rejoices in our restoration. God rejoices in having His holy remnant. God renews us in His love.”
– Frank Padilla, Servant General of FFL in “ON THE FIRST ANNIVERSARY OF OUR CONSECRATION TO MARY”, August 10, 2008, Couples for Christ Foundation for Family and Life

I want to express a feeling of discomfort at the thought that the writer appears to be presumptuous in assuming that he can be a “dispenser” of the joy of the Father to his listeners or readers, which is more than the joy that is in or of Jesus. This dangerous proposition claims connection to the Father through Jesus, whereby Jesus as “stepping stone” is actually stepped upon to catch “more” joy that comes from the Father. By implying that he can surpass Jesus Christ Himself, I imagine this writer as a serpentine creature trying to be convincing about being better, about being “more” wise than GOD – Jesus Himself. There is an ENEMY inside this writer. I pray Mother Mary strikes down the Serpent’s Head!

What/How do I mean?

The writer Padilla claims that while the joy of his community is in Christ, the joy is more than what can be His (or Jesus’), but is of His Father. The claim of having more joy than the one in Christ and saying it comes from the Father is, I think, presumptuous, even blasphemous(?!). It attempts to claim more privilege than the one accorded to Jesus by the Father. To me, CHRIST IS THE ONLY JOY!.

I hope I am wrong, but this particular arrogant or presumptuous thread in the mind of Mr. Padilla seems to prevail in most of his write-ups or his person. There is a certain air of arrogance that he wants to infect other people with, there is a particular air, or smell if that feels better, that is tellingly overdone or beyond normal.

I have an impression that the writer wants to believe that before his listeners or the readers, he can be like Jesus, and as Jesus, he can claim to know and speak in behalf of the Father. WHAT A HERETIC (and BLASPHEMOUS) this Padilla appears to me. And what an unfair thought I may have, indeed, if I have misinterpreted this particular point in his teaching. But what liberating feeling I now have at being able to anticipate a heresy, else pre-empt my mind from entertaining it, and feel much safer at this unique “intellectual fly-by” because of the fact that I am just sharing an opinion which, even if “less right and more wrong”, is a personal impression that may be honed to better mode the more I learn.

Just some personal thoughts towards the direction of Mama Mary, too. Likewise, just want to be fair in love and joy for pun…ooppss, frankly (ooppss again) for fun.



Anonymous said...

If we were not "too obedient" of our leaders, or if there was some window for expressing ourselves not irreverently, of course (or one that could be moderated like this one here), we would have had the chance to discuss our impressions about the heretical tendencies of Padilla's teachings. This would have held true, too, with the rest of the sharings some of which could have been misunderstood as teachings -- well, simply because of reverence we had for, and which also seemed demanded by, the elders.

Seems to me there was also a need, institutionally that is, for balance between blind obedience and reasonable, measured response; between moderate and excessive demand and/or response (too); between a 'blind' and a 'questioning' faith.

Some say FAP would have been safer, and CFC too, if he just kept silent an obeyed as member when he resigned, just like TM.

But then, if FAP did as suggested, we would have been worse off because actually he planned to destroy CFC back in 2006 yet, for he could have made the break more costly.

Ultimately it is betwen having full or total faith in God or the person appearing to care for you and I because of Him - wolves in pastors' clothing.