Catholic Cardinal: 'Atheistic Secularism' and 'Islamic Fundamentalism' Are 'Almost Like Two "Apocalyptic Beasts"'

By Mairead McArdle | October 15, 2015 | 11:08am EDT

Cardinal Robert Sarah, head of the Vatican's 

Congregation for Divine Worship and

the Discipline of the Sacraments. (AP)

Cardinal Robert Sarah, one of the most prominent Catholic Church leaders participating in the Vatican’s ongoing synod meeting about the family, said in his remarks that the world currently faces two major threats, 1) the “idolatry of Western freedom,” which he defined as “atheistic secularism,” and 2) “Islamic fundamentalism.”

These “two unexpected threats” are “almost like two ‘apocalyptic beasts,’” said Cardinal Sarah, who was appointed by Pope Francis in 2014 to head the Vatican’s Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments.

He also stressed that just as Nazi-fascism and communism were twin evils of the 20th century, so too today are “Western homosexual and abortion Ideologies and Islamic fascism.”

During his intervention at the Synod on the Family on Oct. 6,  Cardinal Sarah said, “A theological discernment enables us to see in our time two unexpected threats (almost like two ‘apocalyptic beasts’) located on opposite poles: on the one hand, the idolatry of Western freedom; on the other, Islamic fundamentalism: atheistic secularism versus religious fanaticism.”

Sarah urged the Synod to take note and respond to the broader picture including these global threats as well as local matters, “such as the possible communion for divorced and remarried.”

More specifically, Sarah said, “We find ourselves between ‘gender ideology and ISIS’.”

“Islamic massacres and libertarian demands regularly contend for the front page of the newspapers,” the cardinal remarked, and then referenced the U.S. Supreme Court ruling (5-4) on homosexual “marriage” – “Let us remember what happened last June 26!”

Both present severe threats to the family, Sarah said.

“From these two radicalizations arise the two major threats to the family,” he said. The first is “its subjectivist disintegration in the secularized West through quick and easy divorce, abortion, homosexual unions, euthanasia etc. (cf. Gender theory, the ‘Femen’, the LGBT lobby, IPPF ...),” said the cardinal.

Pro-homosexuality flags.  (AP) 

“On the other hand, the pseudo-family of ideologized Islam which legitimizes polygamy, female subservience, sexual slavery, child marriage etc. (cf. Al Qaeda, Isis, Boko Haram ...),” he said.

The dangers of Islam and the liberal West have “the same demonic origin,” the cardinal stated.

“Unlike the Spirit of Truth that promotes communion in the distinction (perichoresis), these encourage confusion (homo-gamy) or subordination (poly-gamy),” said Cardinal Sarah. “Furthermore, they demand a universal and totalitarian rule, are violently intolerant, destroyers of families, society and the Church, and are openly Christianophobic.”

The cardinal emphasized that these are spiritual challenges.

“’We are not contending against creatures of flesh and blood,’” he said, referencing scripture. “We need to be inclusive and welcoming to all that is human; but what comes from the Enemy cannot and must not be assimilated. You can not join Christ and Belial!”

A woodcarving of Belial (the Devil) and some

of his demonic followers. (Public domain.) 


Belial is a name used in the Old Testament to refer to the Devil.

Cardinal Sarah then compared what he sees as the social cancers of the past and the present.

“What Nazi-Fascism and Communism were in the 20th century, Western homosexual and abortion Ideologies and Islamic Fanaticism are today,” said the cardinal.

Cardinal Robert Sarah, Prefect of the Congregation of Divine Worship has been a strong voice for upholding the doctrine of the Catholic Church. Sarah was one of the cardinals who participated in the papal conclave that elected Pope Francis in March 2013.

Cardinal Sarah’s remarks from the synod were published in the National Catholic Register on Oct. 12. 

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