Cleansing Fire

Defending Truth and Tradition in the Roman Catholic Church


The Clarity of Cardinal Sarah’s Words — Part II

June 6th, 2016, Promulgated by Diane Harris

Charity and the poor

  • “Charity is a service to man, but it is not possible to serve mankind without telling people about God.”
  • “We must reflect theologically on charity so as to prevent Catholic charitable agencies from falling into secularism.”
  • “True charity is neither almsgiving nor humanistic solidarity nor a form of philanthropy: charity is the expression of God and an extension of Christ’s presence in our world…. charity has a value in itself, as a testimony to God ….”
  • Some Catholic organizations are ashamed and refuse to manifest their faith.  They no longer want to talk about God in their charitable activities; their excuse is that they do not want to proselytize.  Nevertheless, Pope Francis writes even more strongly in Evangelii Gaudium: “Since this Exhortation is addressed to members of the Catholic Church,  I want to say, with regret, that the worst discrimination which the poor suffer is the lack of spiritual care …. Our preferential option for the poor must mainly translate into a privileged and preferential religious care.”
  • “I never saw such sufferings as in Haiti…. If we know how to practice charity, we will know how to revere God and we will be able to journey toward eternity.


  • “The Gospel is not a slogan…. I remember being disgusted when I heard the advertising slogan of a Catholic charitable organization: ‘Let us fight for zero poverty’….This slogan respects neither the Gospel nor Christ.”
  • “A poor person feels dependent on God; this bond is the foundation of his spirituality.”
  • “Poverty is a biblical value confirmed by Christ…. Yes, poverty is a Christian value.”
  • “The Church must not fight against poverty but, rather, wage a battle against destitution.”
  • The pope [Francis] says that spiritual destitution is still the most serious because man is cut off from his natural source, which is God.”
  • “Those who want to eradicate poverty make the Son of God a liar. They are mistaken and lying.”
  • “If we do not include the religious aspect, we fall into a kind of philanthropy or secular humanitarian activity that forgets the Gospel.”
  • “We must be precise in our choice of words.  The language of the UN and of its agencies, who want to suppress poverty, which they confuse with destitution, is not that of the Church …. The Son of God did not come to speak to the poor in ideological slogans!  The Church must banish these slogans from her language.”

Gender Issues and Sexual Morality

  • “Morality is fundamentally a consequence of the Christian faith.”
  • “How can we not thank [Pope} Paul VI for the courage he had in issuing the encyclical Humanae vitae?  This document was prophetic in developing a morality that could defend human life.”
  • “I think that history will prove the Church right, for the defense of human life is the defense of mankind.”
  • “In a hyper-eroticized society … women’s dignity has had major setbacks.  The West is the continent that most shamefully humiliates and despises women by publicly stripping them naked and utilizing them for hedonistic commercial purposes.”
  • “How are we to understand the fact that the major UN agencies that claim to champion human rights do not fight vigorously against the powerful European and American sex industry?”
  • “I think that Western colonialism continues today, in Africa and Asia, more vigorously and perversely through the imposition of a false morality and deceitful values.” … “In some African countries, ministries dedicated to gender theory have been created in exchange for economic aid!” … “Gender ideology has become the perverse condition for cooperation and development.” 
  • “International agencies … impose abortion and the sterilization of women.” … “International agencies in fact have no right to practice this new Malthusian, brutal colonialism.”
  • “The Holy See must play its part.  We cannot accept the propaganda and the pressure groups of the LGBT lobbies … The process is all the more unsettling for being rapid and recent.”
  • “It is impossible to remain complacent in the presence of such an immoral and demonic deception.”
  • “…the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation … aims to increase exponentially access to contraception for unmarried girls and women, thus opening up the way for abortion.”
  • “In a strange sort of inversion of roles, pro-life people become monsters to be slain, barbarians from another age who reject progress.” … “If we do not overcome the culture of death, mankind is headed for its perdition.” … “This relentless campaign against life is a new, definitive state in the relentless campaign against God’s plan.”
  • “The idea of a constructed identity actually denies in an unrealistic way the importance of the sexed body.  A man will never become a woman, and she will never become a man, no matter what mutilations one or the other agrees to undergo.”
  • “… I will never agree to let these theories be imposed directly or insidiously on defenseless populations. How do you expect a little child or a young adolescent from the remote African countryside to be able to defend himself against such deceitful speculations.”
  • “It is one thing truly to respect homosexual persons, who have a right to authentic respect, and quite another thing to promote homosexuality as a role model” … “I think that it is an aberration to try to set up that sexuality as a progressive ideology. I observe an attempt by some influential structures to make homosexuality the cornerstone of a new global ethic.”
  • “Every extremist ideological project bears within it its own failure; in the short term,  I fear that homosexual persons will be the first victims of such political excesses.”

Africa (Part I)

  • “In 1969, [Pope] Paul VI was the first pope to take a major trip to Africa. …  Paul VI was a prophet…”
  • “For us it was unforgettable.  In Uganda, he made this defining statement: ‘The new homeland of Christ is Africa.’  Then he added: ‘You Africans are now your own missionaries!'”
  • “Africa was evangelized late … but … how can anyone forget that Africa welcomed and saved the Infant Jesus from the hands of Herod, who wanted to kill him? How can we forget that the man who helped Christ to carry his Cross to Golgotha was an African,  Simon of Cyrene?”
  • “In his 1995 post-synodal apostolic exhortation Ecclesia in Africa, John Paul II made a statement that commits us to remain crucified with Christ for the salvation of the world: ‘I have written your names on the palms of my hands.'” (Isaiah 49:16).
  • “I think that Africa can, in the time of crisis through which we are going, modestly offer the religious sense that dwells in it.  Africa can remind the Church of what the Lord expects of us; God always counts on the poor to stand up to the powerful.”
  • “The African people, who preserve their innocence, can help societies in crisis to humbler, more reasonable, more respectful of human life and of the meaning of nature.  For God wants us to rediscover wisdom and humility.  Africa knows that God always forgives, man sometimes forgives, but nature never forgives.”

The interviewer, Nicholas Diat, prefaces his chapter “Issues in the Postmodern World” with this quote by Georges Bernanos in ‘La France contre les robots“:  “You understand absolutely nothing about modern civilization unless you first  admit that it is a universal conspiracy against all interior life.”


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