(Rome) Cardinal Robert Sarah has made a public statement on the time of Corona. Previously, he had signed the call Veritas liberabit vos,but then withdrew his signature. At the same time, there were voices that his removal as Prefect of the Roman Congregation for Worship was imminent. Is there a connection?
Cardinal Sarah, one of nine Cardinal Prefects at the Roman Curia, is considered an "exotic" in the government of Pope Francis. This is not due to his origin from the African Gold Coast, but in his understanding of the Church, since he is much closer to that of Benedict XVI.
His dismissal and removal from the Vatican has therefore been expected for some time, as Cardinal Gerhard Müller, another signatory of the call, did in 2017. Francis has publicly rebuked Cardinal Sarah in the past for taking steps that run counter to the papal agenda. So far, there have been two particularly glaring cases. Once in 2016/17 because of Sarah's invitation to all priests to return to the celebration ad orientem. There was a great deal of outrage in progressive circles, which were particularly close to the Pope. A debate on this was categorically rejected. Francis intervened personally by reassuring his entourage and declaring Sarah's advance null and void. The cardinal himself did not move away from his position, but was isolated from Santa Marta within his own dicastery and has no direct influence on the leadership of the universal Church.
In a dramatic appeal, well-known cardinals such as Robert Cardinal Sarah, Janis Cardinal Pujats, Gerhard Cardinal Müller and Joseph Cardinal Zen, as well as dozens of bishops, priests and intellectuals, warn to stop the establishment of totalitarian practices under the pretext of containing Covid 19 most countries have been introduced.
Let us not allow centuries of Christian civilization to be wiped out with the excuse of a virus, to create a hideous technological tyranny in which nameless and faceless people decide the fate of the world by banishing us to a virtual reality.
The criminalization of personal and social relationships must be seen as an unacceptable part of the project of those who promote isolation in order to better manipulate and dominate them.
We demand that the restrictions on the celebration of public worship be lifted.
These statements are the key messages of the document, which is published in full here. The call by these brave cardinals can and should be supported .
CALL FOR THE CHURCH AND FOR THE WORLD to the Catholics and all people of good will
Veritas Liberabit Vos (Jn 8, 32)
At a time of great crisis, we pastors of the Catholic Church, because of our mandate, consider it our sacred duty to appeal to our confreres, the clergy, religious, the holy people of God, and all men and women of good will . This call is also signed by intellectuals, medical professionals, lawyers, journalists and other professionals who agree with the content. It can be signed by anyone who wants to make it their own.
Facts have shown that, under the guise of the Covid 19 epidemic, in many cases citizens' inalienable rights are violated and their fundamental freedoms are disproportionately and unjustifiably restricted, including the right to freedom of religion, freedom of expression and freedom of movement. Public health must not and cannot be an alibi to violate the rights of millions of people around the world, let alone to relieve civil authorities of their duty to act with wisdom for the common good. This is all the more urgent, the more doubts are raised from various sides about the actual risk of infection, the danger and resistance to the virus:
We have reason to believe - based on official epidemic data on the number of deaths - that there are forces interested in causing panic among the population. In this way, they want to permanently impose forms of unacceptable restrictions on freedom, control of people and monitoring their movements. These illiberal measures of troubling precedent are a prelude to the creation of a world government that defies oversight.
We also believe that in some situations, containment measures, including the closure of businesses and establishments that have led to a crisis that has brought entire economic sectors to a standstill, have been taken to encourage interference from foreign powers, with serious social and political implications.
These forms of social engineering must be stopped by those in charge of government by taking measures to protect the citizens of whom they are representatives and in whose interests they must act, as is their serious duty. They must help and avoid the family, the cell of society, inappropriately disadvantaging the weak and the elderly and forcing them to painfully separate from their relatives. The criminalization of personal and social relationships must be condemned as an unacceptable part of a project to encourage isolation in order to better manipulate and control them.
We call upon the scientific community to ensure that the medical treatment of Covid-19 promotes a sincere concern for the common good and is therefore taken to avoid that dubious business interests influence the decisions of governments and international agencies. It is unreasonable to outlaw drugs that have proven to be effective and are often inexpensive, to give priority to treatments or vaccines that are not as effective but guarantee higher profits for pharmaceutical companies. This increases the cost of public health. As pastors, we are here to remind that it is morally unacceptable for Catholics to be treated with vaccines made from aborted fetuses.
We also urge the government to ensure that forms of control over people, be it through tracing systems or through any other form of localization, are to be strictly avoided. The fight against Covid-19, however serious it may be, must not serve as an excuse to support the opaque intentions of supranational organizations and groups that are pursuing very strong political and economic interests with this project. In particular, the citizens must be given the opportunity to reject restrictions on personal freedoms and to be punished to avoid an imminent obligation to vaccinate and not to use tracing systems or similar instruments.
Note also the obvious contradiction of those who, on the one hand, pursue a policy of drastically reducing the population and at the same time present themselves as saviors of mankind, even though they have no legitimacy, neither a political nor a social one. Ultimately, the political responsibility of those who represent the people cannot under any circumstances be delegated to "experts" who - and this is truly worrying - call for forms of criminal immunity for themselves.
We urge the media to forcefully, to actively commit to an accurate transfer of information and to allow dissent, rather than how widespread in social media, in the press and on television now, exercise, forms of censorship. Correct disclosure of information means that other voices that deviate from the prevailing opinion are also given space. This enables citizens to consciously evaluate the facts themselves and not to be influenced by strong partisan statements. A democratic and honest debate is the best antidote to the danger of subtle forms of dictatorship, probably worse than those that our society has seen and passed in the recent past.
Finally, as shepherds who are responsible for the flock of Christ, let us remember that the Church insists on claiming autonomy in leadership, worship, and preaching. This autonomy and freedom of the Church is a fundamental right that the Lord Jesus Christ gave it so that it can pursue the goals that are its own. For this reason, as shepherds, we expressly claim the right to make independent decisions about the celebration of Holy Mass and the sacraments. We also demand the recognition of our full autonomy in all matters that come under the direct responsibility of Church authority, such as: the liturgical norms and the legal requirements for the donation of Holy Communion and the administration of the Sacraments. The state has no right whatsoever to interfere in the sovereignty of the Church for whatever reason.The rights of God and believers are the supreme law of the Church, which it can neither do without nor want to do without. We therefore request that the restrictions on the celebration of public services be lifted.
We invite all people of good will not to evade their duty to contribute to the common good, everyone according to their status and opportunities, in the spirit of brotherly love for others. However, this cooperation desired by the Church cannot be separated from respect for natural law or the safeguarding of individual freedoms. The civil law obligations of citizens imply that the state recognizes their rights.
We are all called to assess the current facts in accordance with the teaching of the Gospel. This requires a decision: either with Christ or against Christ! Let us not be intimidated or even frightened by those who want to make us believe that we are only a minority: the good is much more widespread and powerful than the world wants us to believe. We are fighting an invisible enemy who wants to separate the citizens, the children from their parents, grandchildren from their grandparents, believers from their pastors, students from their teachers and customers from their sellers. Let us not allow centuries of Christian civilization to be wiped out under the pretext of a virus, to erect a despicable technocratic tyranny, in which people, whose names and faces are unknown, can decide the fate of the world by banishing us to a virtual reality. If this is the plan by which the powerful of this world want to bow us, then they should know that Jesus Christ, King and Lord of History, has promised that "the powers of darkness" will not prevail (Mt 16:18)
Let us entrust the rulers and all those who control the fate of the nations to Almighty God so that He may enlighten and guide them in this difficult moment of crisis. You should remember that, just as the Lord will judge us shepherds for His flock that He has entrusted to us, He will also judge those who are responsible for defending and governing their people.
We want to pray to the Lord with firm faith so that He may protect the Church and the world. May the Blessed Virgin, help of Christians, crush the head of the old serpent and destroy the plans of the sons of darkness.