An international group of 100 priests and lay scholars published a statement today to protest the pagan worship of Pachamama that took place last month during the Amazon Synod in Rome with Pope Francis’ active participation and apparent support. They called upon the Pope to “repent publicly and unambiguously of these objectively grave sins” and asked bishops’ around the world to “offer fraternal correction to Pope Francis for these scandals.”
Titled “Protest against Pope Francis’s Sacrilegious Acts,” the statement (read full below) highlights Pope Francis’ personal responsibility for the worship of a pagan idol in Rome.
Among the signatories are Professor John Rist, Professor Roberto de Mattei, Professor Claudio Pierantoni, Professor Josef Seifert, as well as Professor Anna Silvas. There are also to be found twenty priests and deacons, among them Father Brian Harrison and the outspoken critic of Pope Francis, Father Cor Mennen. The prominent German Catholic laywoman, Gloria Princess of Thurn und Taxis, also signed, in addition to authors such as Henry Sire, José Antonio Ureta, and Dr. Gerard J.M. van den Aardweg.
The priests and scholars “protest against and condemn the sacrilegious and superstitious acts committed by Pope Francis, the Successor of Peter, in connection with the recent Amazon Synod held in Rome,” and they give detailed evidence of the different incidences of pagan worship during the Amazon Synod.
Most prominently, Pope Francis hosted a pagan ceremony with Pachamama statues in the Vatican Gardens on Oct. 4 and even blessed one of the statues. Additionally, he prayed in front of the Pachamama statue at St. Peter’s Cathedral on October 7 and then accompanied it in procession into the synod hall.
As the statement points out, “Pope Francis himself confirmed that these wooden images were pagan idols. In his apology for the removal of these idols from a Catholic church, he specifically called them Pachamama, a name for a false goddess of mother earth according to pagan religious belief in South America.”
The signers make it clear that pagan worship by Catholics is unacceptable.
They state that “the rendering of worship to anyone or anything other than the one true God, the Blessed Trinity, is a violation of the First Commandment,” and that therefore “absolutely all participation in any form of the veneration of idols is condemned by this Commandment and is an objectively grave sin, independently of the subjective culpability that only God can judge.”
The authors also quote Professor Josef Seifert with regard to Pope Francis’ claim that these statues had been used “without idolatrous intentions.” Stated Seifert: “Even if there is no subjective idolatrous intention behind this, as Pope Francis affirms, the objective fact of putting idols in a Church, let alone in St Peter’s, is an offence against God and an objectively sacrilegious act.”
For the signers, the Pachamama worship that took place under Pope Francis’ leadership “was anticipated by the statement titled ‘Document on Human Fraternity’, signed by Pope Francis and Ahmad Al-Tayyeb, the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar Mosque, on February 4, 2019.” That document states that the “diversity of religions” is “willed by God.” “Pope Francis’ involvement in idolatrous ceremonies,” the signers continue, “is an indication that he meant this statement in a heterodox sense, which allows pagan worship of idols to be considered a good positively willed by God.”
Additionally, the statement refers to the many cardinals and bishops who have already condemned the Pachamama veneration in Rome (among them Cardinals Burke, Müller, Brandmüller, Urosa; and Archbishop Viganò, as well as Bishops Eleganti, Voderholzer, and Azcona). And the statement also quotes a passage from Holy Scripture which makes clear that “the things which the heathens sacrifice, they sacrifice to demons, and not to God” and that “you cannot be partakers of the table of the Lord, and of the table of demons” (St. Paul).
“We respectfully ask all the bishops of the Catholic Church,” the signers conclude, “to offer fraternal correction to Pope Francis for these scandals, and to warn their flocks that, according to the divinely revealed teaching of the Catholic faith, they will risk eternal damnation if they follow the present examples in offending against the First Commandment.”
Clergy and scholars are invited to add their signatures by going here.