When a theologian accuses his archbishop of schism,...

www.catholicculture.org | 7/19/2019 | Staff
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When a theologian accuses his archbishop of schism,...

Massimo Faggioli teaches in the theology department at Villanova (when he is not trolling conservative Catholics on social media).

Villanova - Is—or - Claims - Catholic - University

Villanova is—or claims to be—a Catholic university.

Those who teach in theology departments at Catholic universities are obliged to obtain the mandatum from the diocesan bishop.

Mandatum - Acknowledgment - Church - Authority - Catholic

“The mandatum is fundamentally an acknowledgment by church authority that a Catholic professor of a theological discipline is teaching within the full communion of the Catholic Church.”

Villanova is in the Philadelphia archdiocese, which is led by Archbishop Charles Chaput.

Article - La - Croix - Week - Faggioli

In an article that appeared in La Croix this week, Faggioli suggested that Archbishop Chaput is schismatic.

Now isn’t this an interesting situation?

Mandatum - Communion - Church - Schism - Breach

The mandatum signifies full communion with the universal Church. Schism is a breach of communion. So should a theology professor seek to obtain the mandatum from a prelate he considers schismatic? Should the prelate grant the mandatum to a theologian who accuses him of schism? If Faggioli requests and receives the mandatum from Archbishop Chaput, does he thereby—by his own logic—join the archbishop in schism?

Note #1: Since Faggioli has now denied that he accused Archbishop Chaput of schism, let me quote his own words, so that readers can judge for themselves. In his article in La Croix, he describes the people he terms “devout schismatics”:

Sense - Preference - Church - Devotions - Rosary

They are devout in the sense that they publicly display their preference for a traditionalist Church and its devotions, such as the rosary. They are schismatics because they openly promote the undermining of the bishop of Rome among the Catholic faithful.

These “devout schismatics” are not only politicians. They also include some theologians, priests, bishops and even cardinals. Their schismatic instincts have been on display since the beginning of Francis’ pontificate. But they were particularly visible in August 2018, when some of them—such as Archbishops Charles Chaput of...
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