‘Pope Francis’ Marks Reformation by Calling for Reconciliation Between Lutherans, Catholics

Photo Credit: Tania Rego
Photo Credit: Tania Rego

LUND, Sweden — Jorge Bergoglio, also known as “Pope Francis,” marked the 499th anniversary of the Reformation on Monday with an ecumenical prayer gathering in Sweden, where he called for reconciliation between Lutherans and Roman Catholics.

According to reports, the head of the Lutheran World Federation, Bishop Munib Younan, was present for the event at the Lund Cathedral and the two signed an agreement vowing better dialogue between the two groups.

“As Catholics and Lutherans, we have undertaken a common journey of reconciliation,” Bergoglio said during the service. “Now, in the context of the commemoration of the Reformation of 1517, we have a new opportunity to accept a common path, one that has taken shape over the past fifty years in the ecumenical dialogue between the Lutheran World Federation and the Catholic Church.”

“We have the opportunity to mend a critical moment of our history by moving beyond the controversies and disagreements that have often prevented us from understanding one another,” he stated.

Bergoglio said that Catholics and Lutherans should acknowledge their wrongs and move forward.

“We too must look with love and honesty at our past, recognizing error and seeking forgiveness, for God alone is our judge,” he opined. “Certainly, there was a sincere will on the part of both sides to profess and uphold the true faith, but at the same time we realize that we closed in on ourselves out of fear or bias with regard to the faith which others profess with a different accent and language.”

The Roman Catholic leader also praised Martin Luther as a positive figure who pointed others to the centrality of Scripture and man’s dependence on God.

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As previously reported, the Protestant Reformation, which resulted in the counter-Reformation by the Jesuits, was sparked by Luther, a monk and scholar who served the Roman Catholic Church in Wittenburg, Germany.

As Luther began studying the Scriptures after he was appointed to a Chair of Biblical Theology, he became consumed with a passion to discover what it meant to be a Christian. In the Catholic Church, he had seen men trying to earn their way to Heaven, but as he read the Bible, he realized that salvation was through faith in Christ alone.

An 1872 painting of Luther nailing his 95 thesis to the doors of All Saints' Church
An 1872 painting of Luther nailing his 95 thesis to the doors of All Saints’ Church

“I think I’ve found the truth at last,” the classic film “Martin Luther” depicts Luther as stating to a Church official. “By faith man lives and is righteous, not by what he does for himself, be it adoration of relics, singing of masses, pilgrimages to Rome, purchase of pardon for his sins, but by faith in what God has done for him already through His Son.”

Following the revelation, Luther began to challenge the doctrines of the Roman Catholic Church, compiling a list of 95 thesis where he asserted that Catholic doctrine contradicted the Scriptures. He was later summoned to appear before a meeting of the Church, and was declared a heretic and excommunicated.

Mike Gendron, a former Roman Catholic who leads Proclaiming the Gospel Ministries in Plano, Texas, told Christian News Network that the Vatican has not recanted its unbiblical doctrines to this day.

“Roman Catholicism has not changed,” he said. “There has been no repeal or revoking of the ‘infallible’ anathemas from the Council of Trent that condemn Protestants. There has been no reversal of the excommunication of Martin Luther.”

“The Catholic Church continues to sell indulgences in the form of Mass Cards for those suffering in purgatory,” Gendron outlined. “Catholics remain in bondage to religious deception after they die because their clergy cannot say how many Masses must be offered before they can be released from Purgatory.”

Gendron
Gendron

He noted that the Catholic Church “teaches and commands that the usage of indulgences—a usage most beneficial to Christians—should be kept in the Church, and it condemns with anathema those who say indulgences are useless or that the church does not have the power to grant them,” quoting from Vatican Council II, Sacred Liturgy, Chapter 4.

Gendron advised that division is, at times, biblical and necessary.

“Christians must remain sanctified by the truth of God’s Word and never suppress the differences that divide us from apostate churches,” he explained. “Divine division in truth is infinitely better than Satanic unity in error. The Lord Jesus came to divide believers from unbelievers by the truth of His Word. He said, ‘Do you think that I have come to give peace on earth? No, I tell you, but rather division (Luke 12:51-53).'”

“Evangelicals can never have unity with Catholics because we are divided on the essentials of the Gospel—how one is born again, how one is justified, who can mediate between God and man, and the efficacy, sufficiency and necessity of Jesus Christ,” he said. “Tragically, the Lutherans, who once embraced the truth of God’s Word, are now compromising that truth for the sake of unity with an apostate church. The Catholic Church, which embraces a false and fatal gospel, will never compromise its ‘infallible’ dogmas.”

The Swedish publication “The Local” notes, “The Swedish branch of the Lutheran Church is among the most liberal in the Christian family. The top archbishop has been a woman, Antje Jackelen, since 2013; it has ordained women pastors since 1960 and has openly lesbian and gay bishops…”


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  • Amos Moses

    Dear Francis …… as soon as you accept the scriptures …….. that you hold no biblical office as defined by those scriptures ………. and that scripture is the ultimate authority over all men …. including you …… this can be done ……. abdicating your man based office would go a long way toward this goal …………… there is no basis in scripture for “Sola Magisterium” …………

    • Mike Feehan

      Correct….And there is also no biblical basis for Mary being sinless, infant baptism making one a child of God/born again, purgatory, indulgences, confessing your sins to a sinner Priest when the BIBLE tells me in so many places that i CAN AND WILL go straight to Jesus, 1 John 1, verse 9, Isiah 43:25, Mark 2:5, Luke 5:21, etc, etc…WHY would I go to another sinner, a fair number of them homosexuals, when the BIBLE tells me that I can and will go straight to Jesus?? Let’s see, praying the rosary, calling priests father when the BIBLE states to call noone else father except God, and that doesn’t include our earthly father….Mike Gendron wrote a book which I would highly recommend calling Preparing for Eternity…It exposes all of the differences between what the BIBLE has to say versus what their church teaches via their many made traditions of which I have listed below…

      And no, folks cannot defend using these man made traditions by the verse in 2 Thessalonians2:15 which conveys the following: So then, brothers and sisters, stand firm and hold fast to the teachings we passed on to you, whether by word of mouth or by letter.****These were traditions passed down from the APOSTLES, NOT ongoing man made traditions which is so common in this Church….

      I have included 42 of them down below…And the APOSTLES had nothing to do with these…These are MAN MADE traditions created by other MEN…:

      …Presbyters first called priests by Lucian……2nd century..

      2… Sacerdotal mass instituted by Cyprian..3rd century

      3… Prayers for the dead—-A.D. 300

      4….Making the sign of the cross—A.D. 300

      5… Wax candles—-A.D. 320

      6….Veneration of angels, dead saints, and images…A.D. 375

      7…Mass became a daily ritual—A.D. 394

      8…Beginning of exaltation of Mary, term “Mother of God” first applied to her by Council of Ephesus….A.D. 431

      9….Priests began to wear special clothing—A.D. 500

      10..Extreme Unction (Rite of Healing)….A.D. 526

      11….The doctrine of purgatory….A.D. 593

      12… Latin used in worship….A.D. 600

      13..Prayers offered to Mary, dead saints and angels…A.D. 600

      14…First man to be proclaimed Pope…(Boniface III) A.D. 610

      15…Kissing the Pope’s feet…..A.D. 709

      16….Temporal power of Popes, conferred by Pepin, King of the Franks…..A.D. 750

      17..Veneration of cross, images, relics authorized…A.D. 786

      18…Holy Water, mixed with pinch of salt, chrism, and blessed by a priest…A.D. 850

      19….Venerations of St. Joseph—A.D. 890

      20…College of Cardinals begun—A.D. 927

      21…Baptism of bells instituted by Pope John X111…A.D. 965

      22…Canonization of dead saints by Pope John XV….A.D. 995

      23…Fasting on Fridays and Lent….A.D. 998

      24….The Mass developed gradually as a sacrifice, attendance made obligatory…A.D. 11TH century…

      25…Celibacy of priests declared….A.D. 1079

      26…Rosary adopted (pagan) by Peter the Hermit….A.D. 1090

      27…The Inquisition instituted by Council of Verona….A.D. 1184

      28….Sale of indulgences….A.D 1190..

      29….Seven Sacraments, defined by Peter Lombard….12th century

      30….Transubstantiation, defined by Innocent III…A.D. 1215..

      31…Auricular confession (Rite of Reconciliation of sins to a priest instead of God, instituted by Innocent III A.D. 1215

      32….Adoration of the wafer (called the Host) decreed by Pope Honorius III….A.D. 1220

      33…Scapular invented by Simon Stock of England…A.D. 1251

      34…The cup forbidden to the laity at communion by the Council of Florence…..A.D. 1439

      35…Purgatory proclaimed as a dogma by the Council of Florence in A.D 1439

      36…***Traditions declared of EQUAL AUTHORITY with the BIBLE by the Council Of Trent…A.D. 1545

      37…Apocryphial books added to the Bible by the Council of Trent….A.D. 1546

      38…Creed of Pope Pius IV imposed as the official creed in place of the original Apostolic Creed….A.D. 1560

      39….Immaculate Conception of Mary (not virgin birth) proclaimed by Pope Pius IX…A.D. 1854

      40….Syllabus of Errors proclaimed by Pope Pius IX, and ratified by the Vatican Council; condemned freedom of religion, conscience, speech, press, and scientific discoveries which are disapproved by the Roman Church; asserted the Pope’s temporal authority over all civil rulers….A.D. 1864..

      41….Infallibility of the Pope in matters of faith and morals claimed by the Vatican Council….A.D. 1870…

      42…Assumption of Mary proclaimed by Pope Pius XII….A.D. 1950…..

    • Robert

      Amos Moses enjoyed your post.. I also think the article was interesting .. I just really would hope people type the words “”” Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary”” IN THEIR browser enjoy viewing the Wartburg castle With its “HolyGhost Room””” the seminary castle is in Wisconsin.. And look and compare the difference in our beliefs there to thebeliefs told in this article.. just a sidenote The Holy Ghost Room is the most promment part of the seminarys wartburg castle..i hope you enjoy the tour .The holy Ghost room there has a very interesting history.. ..

  • Amos Moses

    Mike Gendron ……….. NAILED IT …………. met him once a few years ago ….. nice guy ……….

  • Grace Kim Kwon

    It’s not possible now that some Western Lutherans endorse abnormal sexual depravity which the Word of God condemns clearly and plainly. It’s similar to the picture of the Southern Judah being far worse than Northern Israel towards the end of the kingdom… The Catholics should go back to the Word of God instead of uniting with Sodomic social clubs. Truth is more important than peace in apostasy.

    • jackson

      Catholics and Lutherans have their own versions of religion like yourself. No religion is better than another. They are all man made constructs.

      • Amos Moses

        Lutherans are not a homogeneous group ….. there are a number of synods ….. she is speaking mostly of the ELCA ….. and they are aberrant …….

        “No religion is better than another.”

        Wrong ….. all “religions” are not co-equal …………

      • Grace Kim Kwon

        Biblical Christianity is the only right and true religiuon. All others are false. ( John ch.14, Acts ch. 4, Galatians ch.1-2, James ch.1) The West’s mainline “churches” that endorse homosexuality are cults and not Christian. The Holy Bible prohibits abortion and homosexuality, and Martin Luther would never have supported homosexuality if he were alive today. The Western culture got weird by applying racial equality upon homosexuality. Every culture has deadly defects and secular West needs Christianity to become civilized.

        • jackson

          The bible is YOUR guide, not mine. Hokosexuals have more right to be here than you do as they were born here. Christianity is the last thing we need right now. The bible didnt create civilized natilns but mankind did create the bible. Get a grip on reality.

          • Grace Kim Kwon

            You are wrong. The Holy Bible is the Creator’s Manual for mankind. Mankind does not have God’s truth or salvation or morality or freedom or equality or civility or human rights apart from the Holy Bible. The West has no rights to force homosexuality upon mankind. You guys are too well-fed and are being bored of having everything on earth. Stop pushing immorality on mankind who have been already suffering.

          • jackson

            We dont need your bible or your god for anything.

          • Grace Kim Kwon

            You do. Bibleless West enslaves mankind with sexual perversion.

          • jackson

            Im not enslaved by sexual perversion…whatever that means…lol.

          • Grace Kim Kwon

            Secular Western culture = blasphemy and nudism and sexual immorality. The West needs Christianity for sanity and morality. Western humanists are not smart. They became only more destructive as they have become childless. You need to repent of your blasphemy to get saved. The Holy Bible is the only method to abolish the West’s slavery both now and then. No other works because villains drug mankind. Biblical Christianity alone is drug-proof.

          • jackson

            A great many of America’s greatest minds are secular. No christianity needed. You are indoctrinated and enslaved by your religion

          • Grace Kim Kwon

            Secularists are baby-killing sexual pervs, and mankind need Christianity for morality.

          • jackson

            You’re starting to sound just like those christians at westboro baptist church. Im an atheist who isnt a pervert nor a baby killer. Love ypur christian insults

    • Mike Feehan

      AMEN….They just LOVE to use their man made rules over God’s Word…I am CONVINCED that there are no BIBLES in the pews because they do not want folks to actually start REALLY reading it as I and TONS of others have and seen ALL of the things which the Bible speaks to which this church does NOT speak to….

      • Grace Kim Kwon

        Yes, female ordination is a starter for the utter contempt of the Word of God. Thank God that pope insists no female priesthood. Female ordination is destructive to the truth. The Western mainliners proved it. The only thing they need is to read the Word of God and retrurn to God’s truth in repentance as they should.

        • Mike Feehan

          And I could CARE LESS what is in some Catechsim written by sinners…The reason why they do not have BIBLES in the pews is because they are afraid of folks actually reading them for themselves and seeing ALL of the differences between what their church incorrectly teaches versus what is in the Bible…

          • Grace Kim Kwon

            Yes, they are reading New Age books and not the Holy Bible or Christian catechism. They are pagans with the cover of Christianity. Accepting homosexuality is denial of sin’s existence, and therefore it is no Christian at all.

    • Mike Feehan

      …Presbyters first called priests by Lucian……2nd century..

      2… Sacerdotal mass instituted by Cyprian..3rd century

      3… Prayers for the dead—-A.D. 300

      4….Making the sign of the cross—A.D. 300

      5… Wax candles—-A.D. 320

      6….Veneration of angels, dead saints, and images…A.D. 375

      7…Mass became a daily ritual—A.D. 394

      8…Beginning of exaltation of Mary, term “Mother of God” first applied to her by Council of Ephesus….A.D. 431

      9….Priests began to wear special clothing—A.D. 500

      10..Extreme Unction (Rite of Healing)….A.D. 526

      11….The doctrine of purgatory….A.D. 593

      12… Latin used in worship….A.D. 600

      13..Prayers offered to Mary, dead saints and angels…A.D. 600

      14…First man to be proclaimed Pope…(Boniface III) A.D. 610

      15…Kissing the Pope’s feet…..A.D. 709

      16….Temporal power of Popes, conferred by Pepin, King of the Franks…..A.D. 750

      17..Veneration of cross, images, relics authorized…A.D. 786

      18…Holy Water, mixed with pinch of salt, chrism, and blessed by a priest…A.D. 850

      19….Venerations of St. Joseph—A.D. 890

      20…College of Cardinals begun—A.D. 927

      21…Baptism of bells instituted by Pope John X111…A.D. 965

      22…Canonization of dead saints by Pope John XV….A.D. 995

      23…Fasting on Fridays and Lent….A.D. 998

      24….The Mass developed gradually as a sacrifice, attendance made obligatory…A.D. 11TH century…

      25…Celibacy of priests declared….A.D. 1079

      26…Rosary adopted (pagan) by Peter the Hermit….A.D. 1090

      27…The Inquisition instituted by Council of Verona….A.D. 1184

      28….Sale of indulgences….A.D 1190..

      29….Seven Sacraments, defined by Peter Lombard….12th century

      30….Transubstantiation, defined by Innocent III…A.D. 1215..

      31…Auricular confession (Rite of Reconciliation of sins to a priest instead of God, instituted by Innocent III A.D. 1215

      32….Adoration of the wafer (called the Host) decreed by Pope Honorius III….A.D. 1220

      33…Scapular invented by Simon Stock of England…A.D. 1251

      34…The cup forbidden to the laity at communion by the Council of Florence…..A.D. 1439

      35…Purgatory proclaimed as a dogma by the Council of Florence in A.D 1439

      36…***Traditions declared of EQUAL AUTHORITY with the BIBLE by the Council Of Trent…A.D. 1545

      37…Apocryphial books added to the Bible by the Council of Trent….A.D. 1546

      38…Creed of Pope Pius IV imposed as the official creed in place of the original Apostolic Creed….A.D. 1560

      39….Immaculate Conception of Mary (not virgin birth) proclaimed by Pope Pius IX…A.D. 1854

      40….Syllabus of Errors proclaimed by Pope Pius IX, and ratified by the Vatican Council; condemned freedom of religion, conscience, speech, press, and scientific discoveries which are disapproved by the Roman Church; asserted the Pope’s temporal authority over all civil rulers….A.D. 1864..

      41….Infallibility of the Pope in matters of faith and morals claimed by the Vatican Council….A.D. 1870…

      42…Assumption of Mary proclaimed by Pope Pius XII….A.D. 1950…..

      • RbtRgus

        What’s that, a list of ridiculous ideas?

        • Mike Feehan

          No, it is ALL of the man made traditions within the Roman Catholic Church…

          • RbtRgus

            Silly stuff. All the Christian stories are silly.

  • TwoRutRoad

    Hmph. The division caused by religion runs deep, but they claim it is the glue that hold society together. They can’t even decide among themselves which parts of the toys to play with and how to play with them. Then they get mad at me for not wanting to play with their toys.

    • Amos Moses

      “The division caused by religion runs deep,”

      Supposed to be that way …………. and your religion is the most aberrant of all ……….. secularism is a blight on humanity ………..

      • RbtRgus

        Fundamentalism is the problem. Secularism is the cure.

        • Amos Moses

          and you seem to be a fundamentalist secularist ………… FYI, there is no definition of “fundamentalist” in the christian context that has any meaning …… so i am not even sure you know what you are talking about …. much less me ……….

          • RbtRgus

            How about conservative or evangelical Christian. They are problems too. Fundamentalism has the same meaning in xtianity as it does in Islam.

          • Amos Moses

            Yeah ……. no ………

          • RbtRgus

            Yup. Fundie Christians are less violent, but they are no more correct than fundie Muslims.

          • Amos Moses

            So is that a scientific, theological or personal opinion ……………….

          • RbtRgus

            It is fact. Both Islam and Christianity are based on claims that are almost certainly wrong. They definitely both lack good evidence in support of their supernatural claims.

          • Amos Moses

            i see … “Both Islam and Christianity are based on claims that are almost certainly wrong.” ……. do you have perfect knowledge of every thing ever ………………

          • RbtRgus

            No. Do you? You cannot prove that Mohammed was not an actual messenger from god. Does that constitute evidence that he was?

            We atheists just ask for evidence for the supernatural claims of the Bible. Of course it is always sorely lacking.

          • Amos Moses

            Good …. then the only way for your “fact” to be accurate is for you to possess that ability ….. and since you admit you do not ….. then it is not a fact ………….

  • Joe Grace

    This quote by Shawn Brasseaux will clear up the confusion spread by so called “religion” and take away the atheists/secularists favorite stance concerning the truth of God’s word.

    ” Since Christendom has utterly failed to “rightly divide the word of truth” for 20 centuries, denomination after denomination has arisen. They now number in the tens of thousands! Frankly, the Roman Catholic Church would have never started had the Word of God been consistently rightly divided from the first century onward. The Mormon Church would have never started. The Baptist Church would have never
    started. The Presbyterians, Lutherans, Assemblies of God, Churches of
    Christ, Nazarenes, Episcopalians, Seventh-Day Adventists, Methodists,
    Christian Scientists, would have never started!!

    Had professing Christians never abandoned the doctrine taught by God’s “apostle of the Gentiles” (Romans 11:13), the Apostle Paul, in the Books of Romans through Philemon, they would have never
    gotten into the mess in which they are. Alas, they grabbed verses to
    and about Israel, tried to make them fit us Gentiles, and made God’s
    Word burdensome, nauseating, and repulsive for billions through the ages! We would hate
    to be in the shoes of those people when they stand before the Lord
    Jesus Christ in judgment, having to give an account for all those “idle” (empty, worthless) “words” (Matthew 12:36,37), such “profane [wicked] and vain [empty] babblings [gibberish]!”

  • RbtRgus

    Why do they put Pope Francis in quotes?

  • Lumina

    And if a house be divided against itself, that house cannot stand.

  • Robert

    Their giving the rest of us lutherans a bad name and we dont like it . Yet did not Jesus allow his perfect righteous holy name to be drugged through the mud to save us the ungodly . ROMANS 4:6 yes he did.

  • Robert

    Im Lutheran And ive noticed that devout Lutheran cf Handel and his Christian Lutheran apologetics by way of music his Messiah is performed in many denominations. Christian and none Christian. I understand he is even burried in non Lutheran st abby cathedal and that thoudands of christians that were never brought up lutheran attended his funeral. Because they loved him and his Messiah. And im so very happand would not want to spoil any one joy of performing his meddiah os all i have to say.