Catholic Cardinal Raymond Burke, an American who serves on the Vatican's Supreme Court, said in an interview this week that "perhaps we have arrived at the End Times."
Cardinal Burke prefaced his comment by noting the current confusion in the church over divorce and remarriage, adultery, and who can properly receive Communion, coupled with a social secularism that says people can invent their own realities outside of biology, fundamental science and reason. When the church starts questioning moral fundamentals and reason itself, it indicates that the church is either incapable or unwilling to obey the teachings of Jesus Christ, he said, even those truths evident in Nature itself.
In the interview with the Catholic Herald, posted on Nov. 30, reporter Paoli Gambi asked the cardinal, "Your Eminence, you have recently referred to our times as ‘realistically apocalyptic.’ And you added that the ‘confusion, division and error’ within the Catholic Church coming from ‘shepherds’ even at the highest levels indicate that we ‘may be’ in the End Times. Would you help us to understand what you meant by this?”
Cardinal Burke said, "In the present moment there is confusion and error about the most fundamental teachings of the Church, for example with regard to marriage and the family. For instance, the idea that people who are living in an irregular union [adultery] could receive the sacraments is a violation of the truth with regard both to the indissolubility of marriage and to the sanctity of the Eucharist."
"St Paul tells us in his First Letter to the Corinthians that before we approach to receive the Body of Christ, we have to examine ourselves, or we eat our condemnation by receiving the Eucharist in an unworthy way," said the cardinal.
"Now the confusion in the Church is going even further than that, because there is today confusion as to whether there are acts which are intrinsically evil [such as homosexuality] and this, of course, is the foundation of the moral law," he said. "When this foundation begins to be questioned within the Church, then the whole order of human life and the order of the Church itself are endangered."
"So there is a feeling that in today’s world that is based on secularism with a completely anthropocentric approach, by which we think we can create our own meaning of life and meaning of the family and so on, the Church itself seems to be confused," said Cardinal Burke.
"In that sense one may have the feeling that the Church gives the appearance of being unwilling to obey the mandates of Our Lord," he said. "Then perhaps we have arrived at the End Times."
The Catholic Church has always taught that Catholics who divorce -- no annulment -- and then remarry in a civil ceremony are entering into a state of adultery and cannot receive Communion, because they are in a state of serious sin.
Today, however, because of Popr Francis' letter on the family, Amoris Laetitia, many bishops, priests, and lay people say it is okay for couples living in adultery to receive Communion. (See here, here, here, and here.) In addition, some bishops and priests now contend that homosexual behavior is not "intrinsically disordered," and that gay civil unions or gay "marriages" are acceptable. (See here, here, and here.)