Rorate Caeli

"Youcat"? They should rename it Lolcat:
cute and unfunny

After the "contraceptive" debacle, an even greater mess in "Youcat" - and what else could be expected from the Cardinal of Vienna? He is just so bad in defending the faith that he actually makes us side with Totò Rino Fisichella...

The Italian edition contained another translation error in its treatment of end-of-life treatment. While the German original said that a family may accept the inevitability of death of a loved one, the Italian translation used a term meaning "passive euthanasia," thus appearing to provide justification for the removal of food and water from a dying patient--a practice that the Church condemns.

As Sandro Magister notices, it is not merely another Italian translation problem:
To question 382, "Is Euthanasia allowed?", the [Italian version of the] Youth Catechism answers:
"Triggering an active death is always a violation of the commandment: 'Thou shalt not kill' (Exodus 20, 13), on the contrary, to assist a person during the process of death is even a human duty." 
So far, so good. But soon afterwards, in the paragraph that should develop and explain the short answer first, we read: 
"... Whoever helps a person to die in the sense of active euthanasia violates the fifth commandment, those who help a person during death in the sense of passive euthanasia instead obey the commandment of love of neighbor. ... . " 
Asked how it could be argued that "passive euthanasia obeys the commandment of love," Cardinal Christoph Schönborn, the first manager of the original German edition German of the book, argued that, in German, the word "euthanasia" is not intendeded, but rather "Sterbehilfe", [meaning] help for death, [which is subject to broader meanings], even in a positive light. 
But Monsignor Rino Fisichella rejected entirely - even in their formulation in German - the expressions "active euthanasia" and "passive euthanasia", as they lend themselves to misunderstandings and "should not be used." 
In fact, in the Church's documents on the subject, including the encyclical "Evangelium Vitae", of Pope John Paul II, we never hear of "passive euthanasia", but rather of "euthanasia by omission", that is, that caused by the failure to provide the medical treatment or life support necessary for the person and proportionate to his condition, leading deliberately to death. 
And in the same magisterial documents euthanasia by omission is also severely condemned. While the so-called abstention from aggressive treatment is accepted, that is, [abstention from] those treatments whose only effect is to aggravate and prolong the suffering.
Cardinal Schönborn has announced that the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith will set up a working group to review the entire text of the new Catechism, the original and translations, and to collect all corrections that are to be made in subsequent editions. ...
At the end of the [presentation] press conference, Schönborn coldly laid the responsibility for the mistakes on Italian Cardinal Angelo Scola, who was to be the "guarantor" [of the translation] and, in fact, appears on the title of the book as the man "responsible" for the contents of the Italian translation.
The paradox is that Schönborn and Scola are, within the College of Cardinals, the most brilliant stars of the Ratzinger "school". I wonder what he thinks this time, their master.
We guess there is a very good reason why theological concepts in official Church documents should be handled in Latin. And it is hard to imagine that the concept of Passive Sterbehilfe was introduced naïvely by those who decided to do so in this Catechism - now that Catholic Catechisms are being  "originally" written in the language of the Book of Concord! One can only imagine what other pearls of Northern European theology and morals are hidden in Youcat.


By the way, this is our 3000th post! Thank you all for your readership.


  1. Anonymous7:10 PM

    What do you expect? The CCC is a mediocre concoction of less than complete theological, or even philosophical, integrity, reflecting its author, now Cardinal Schoenborn.

    That man has gone completely over to the dark side and is leading the apostate Austrian bishops towards becoming paving stones for the floors of hell.

    In point of fact, "Sterbehilfe" is not so open to interpretation as Schoenborn would like us to believe. It literall means "death help" and is a German neologism which carries heavy connotations of euthanasia in all usages, at least currently. But because it sounds pretty, it is used by the dealers of death to make euthanasia/murder acceptable to the masses.

    There are other theological errors in the CCC, as well. For example, even the Latin text claims that the assembly of the people in the Mass are the "leitourgos", official minister. That is Lutheran heresy--yet a heresy which was specifically inserted by then-Cardinal Ratzinger. Only Jesus Christ is the true "Leitourgos", and by virtue of his ordination, the priest, when he is acting "in persona Christi".

    Back to the Catechism of the Council of Trent!

  2. Anonymous8:35 PM

    Is that picture ... the birthday party for a Belgian Bishop's nephew? Sorry, I meant to write a *LIBERAL* Belgian Bishop's nephew.


  3. Ogard8:36 PM

    I would suggest that all those who are so competent as our Anonymous should consider sending their comments on the CCC to the CDF, rather than complain in public. The CCC is going to be amended, so they had an ideal chance to be heard, and I am sure they will be considered unless they send nonsense-comments.

  4. Anonymous8:41 PM

    Dear Anon.:

    It makes me wonder why the TAC was so quick to insist that the C.C.C. be its ultimate rule of faith. That was a huge error. They shoudl have simply insisted on the old Profession of Faith. Don't ever commit yourself to more than you can swallow.

    And has this gesture endeared the TAC to the Holy See? Not a whit. The Holy See has put the compromiser FiFers in charge of the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham. These are the men who would clearly have preferred to be Anglican than Catholic and who held out in the Church of England until the last dog was hung.

    We need to pray hard that Bishop Mercer and his T.T.A.C. will be given a room in that Inn--or perhaps they'd be better off in an ecclesiastical stable, like their own Ordinariate, using its own liturgy! Blessed are You [sick] Lord God of all Creation! Long live Bugnini, the deified Architect of the New World Church!


  5. Anonymous8:54 PM

    Fantasy V.I.S. Bulletin:

    Today, His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI appointed His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI as Bishop of the Personal and International Diocese of St. Gregory the Great, which shall use the Traditional Roman Rite of 1962 as its normative liturgy. The personal structure exists throughout the world without territorial limit. This is a secondary appointment and His Holiness will also remain Bishop of Rome. The various Ecclesia Dei communites are hereby incorporated into the new canonical structure, and Cardinal Burke is appointed as Delegate-General Apostolic for the new structure. Regional Delegates will be appointed in due course.

    In Kenya today, ...


  6. Anonymous8:59 PM

    Second Fantasy Bulletin, V.I.S.

    His Holiness today revoked the 1975 suppression of the S.S.P.X and all canonical penalties applied to its members since then. It is now reconstituted as a society of apostolic life of pontifical right and is hereby incorporated into the Personal Diocese of St. Gregory the Great. Its affilated institutes may continue their existing affiliations within the Diocese.

    In Slovakia today, the Bishop warned his faithful that party balloons can be dangerous. Children can swallow the deflated balloons or they can damage the eye should they explode ...


  7. Anonymous9:05 PM

    Third Possible Builetin:

    The papal mouthpiece, um, I mean spokesman, reiterated today that, despite recent canonical changes, Bishop Richard Williamson may not exercise any priestly ministry in the Catholic Church until he has apologised for having a personal opinion on a secular matter of history not liked by the A.D.L.

    In other news today, to be reported from Vladivostok to Nuuk, in Nunavut, a small child dropped an ice cream cone on the pavement in Tel Aviv today. The child could not be consoled by several teams of grief counsellors, all wearing black hats and sporting long beards. The child's mother is suing the ice-cream vendor for several miilion dollars for causing psychological trauma to her child....

    More major breaking news stories coming tomorrow.


  8. Anonymous9:22 PM

    Typical 'Protestant' claptrap coming out of Germanic Europe (France gets included in this definition). I think its high time the Holy See actually dismantled their episcopal conferences and ruled the dioceses directly as they seem unable to transmit the Holy Faith without distorting it and actually actively promote distortions that the likes of Luther, Calvin, Zwingli and co would be startled (that's if they could of been trusted to turn their backs on their own innovation). Seriously, Germanic Europe not as a whole but a tidy majority is a highly spiritualist area that has been willing to dump Our Lord plenty of times in the pursuit of spurious concepts and the sooner the Holy See tackles this, the better.

    Lee Lovelock-Jemmott Van der Heerenveen.

  9. Anonymous9:30 PM

    Cardinal Schoenborn = Modern Judas

    Renato Lima

  10. Brian9:35 PM

    I wonder who would have appointed Cardinal Christoph Schönborn to be the first manager of the Vatican-sponsored youth catechism?

  11. Anonymous9:58 PM

    Oh would that it were true, PKTP. Alas, alas.

  12. The question I always have that no one else ever seems to ask is, WHY ON EARTH DO WE NEED ALL OF THIS "YOUTH" CRAP ANYWAY?

    Mass is mass. There is no need for "youth masses". A pilgrimage or visit of the Holy Father should be just that. There is no need for a "World Youth Day".

    Salvation is salvation. Sacraments are sacraments. Catechesis is catechesis. A well-rounded practice of the faith will reach young and old alike, weak and strong, poor and rich, man and woman, holy and heathen. I'm getting rather sick of things that are somehow supposed to make the faith "more relevant", as if it was somehow irrelevant to the generations of young people that gave us Francis of Assisi, Therese of Lisieux, Bernadette Soubirous, Catherine of Siena, Joan of Arc, and countless others who responded to God's call in their youth.

    Speaking as someone who's only just a few years past adolescence, it was always painfully clear to me that everything that was done to make me feel "included" simply made me feel infantilized, as well as most other young people I knew, and it was perfectly obvious that the only thing "young" about the books, and masses, and videos, and praise & worship services, and retreats, and what-have-you that were always shoved in our faces was the cult of youth by people who were old or aging and resented being old.

    The Vatican needs to stop acting like its some kind of corporate retreat service for people who want to feel good about themselves, and actually concern itself with whether people's souls are being saved. The Youth Catechism is an inherently stupid idea that someone probably came up with because they saw a Justin Bieber YouTube video and figured out how easy it is to make money off impressionable young people.

  13. John McFarland2:11 AM

    Dear PKTP,

    Do you have some reason to think that the TAC has any problem with the CCC?

    For that matter, do you have any reason to think that the generality of TACers aren't just Anglo-Catholics who don't like priestesses and professed sodomites in their hierarchy, and reckon that a tent big enough to hold the FSSP, the Neocats, Fr. Stan Fortuna, and Cardinal Schoenborn is big enough to hold them, too?

  14. Anonymous2:39 AM

    Most of the posts seem to be unfavorable to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, but for one who has read and reflected on the text for years, I could say that the CCC is already good enough--an attempt to rearticulate the Faith in a way that speaks to both mind an heart.

    My experience has been that the limitations of the CCC, where I find it vague and inadequate, has led me to pre-Vatican II catechisms (Baltimore Catechism and Catechism of St. Pius X for example). I believe the same would also be true for one who lives "fides quaerens intellectum."

    That is why I am wondering why have a YouCat (full of erroneous translations and ambiguous articulations) when we already have the CCC (albeit imperfect), or if we want to appeal to the youth, we have the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (approved and published motu proprio by Pope Benedict XVI). They could just "repackage" it to appeal to the "youth market."

    Why seek the youth? Because we are losing them. Our Lord Himself would have wanted us to seek those are lost. We need to start somewhere, and these "youth" stuff is one of them. Of course, they also have to be gradually deepened in the Faith by a more mature instruction in it. But we need to start somewhere realistic to turn the tide.

  15. DefensorFidei4:36 AM

    I've never understood the need for a "YouCat" either. The Compendium is simple enough.

  16. The compendium was distributed (with great success) at WYD Sydney 2008.

  17. The Compendium is indeed a fine work, in many ways even better than the CCE, and I see no reason - other than love of novelty and profiteering by publishing houses - for this misnamed and misbegotten new work.


  18. It all began in the last pontificate when the pope blessed the use of rock music in the liturgy at the youth-cult jamboree in Paris - remember what the Lutherian priest & rock musician David Bowie stated about this genre of music - always the Devil's music.

  19. Anonymous8:14 AM

    To Anonymous 13 April, 2011 19:10

    I completely agree:

    "That man has gone completely over to the dark side and is leading the apostate Austrian bishops towards becoming paving stones for the floors of hell."

  20. Anonymous7:17 PM

    The removal of food and water from an actively dying patient isn't condemned by the Church in all circumstances. Sometimes it would be to the patient's further detriment to pump them full of fluids if they're fluid overloaded or tube-feeds if they're unable to digest it. Just some clarity from a Catholic RN. :)

  21. No doubt this statement from the YOUCAT has everything to do with the open defiance of Christian values:
    "The sins of the flesh are bad, but they are the least bad of all sins."- YOUCAT margin statement page 224
    It appears tha the YOUCAT serves to state some of the Truth of The Catholic Church while denying the grave nature of sins against Chastity, simultaneously.
    "Oh what a tangled web they weave..."


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