Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Vatican theologian raps Obama hero

Preacher to the papal household, Fr Raniero Cantalamessa, has said that "vogueish" interpretations of the doctrine of medieval mystic, Joachim of Fiore, as proposing a new liberal and spiritual church are false and heretical.

ANSA reports that Fr Cantalamessa rapped the teachings of Joachim of Fiore cited three times during his presidential campaign by Barack Obama as a "master of contemporary civilisation" and someone who wanted to create a fairer world.

''Few of those who expound on Gioacchino da Fiore (Joachim of Fiore, 1130-1202 AD) on the Internet know, or go to the trouble of finding out, what this character really said," Fr Cantalamessa said.

According to the most "vogueish" interpretations, Cantalmessa said, the utopian mystic proposed a new liberal and spiritual Church able to move beyond dogmas and hierarchies.

This was a "false and heretical" view, Cantalamessa said, because believers must be guided not only by the spirit but also by the laws of the Church.

"It can be fatal to do without one or the other of these guides".

Thomas Aquinas confuted his theories in his Summa Theologica, but in The Divine Comedy, Dante Alighieri placed him in paradise.

The Fourth Council of the Lateran in 1215 condemned some of his ideas about the nature of the Trinity, without taking any action.

Finally Pope Alexander IV condemned his writings and those of his follower Gerardo of Borgo San Donnino and set up a commission that in 1263 in Synod of Arles eventually declared his theories heretical.

Joachim is also cited as a model by the hero of Umbert Eco's bestselling cowled skulduggery high-brow whoddunit The Name of the Rose.

Meanwhile, many in the mystic monk's southern Italian hometown of San Giovanni in Fiore are awaiting a decision from the Vatican on the proposed beatification of the monk.

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(Source: CTHUS)

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