Monday, February 18, 2008

MARK MICHAEL ZIMA: "IS MOTHER TERESA A SAINT?: A Catholic's Critical Examination of a Modern Day Catholic Hero" (PART ONE)

MP3 Available Here

MARK MICHAEL ZIMA, a Traditionalist Catholic in good standing, will address the very controversial question "IS MOTHER TERESA A SAINT?: A Catholic's Critical Examination of a Modern Day Catholic Hero."

Catholics, Mainline Protestants and even many Evangelicals uphold Mother Teresa of Calcutta as one of the greatest heroes of Christendom. Ten years after her death, she still holds the moral imagination of the world. Those who question Mother Teresa’s sanctity are treated as misguided souls who would better their time imitating her virtues than probing for her peccadilloes. The Christian world will praise Mother Teresa feeding the hungry and giving drink to the thirsty. But what faithful Christian will praise her for saying:

"I’ve always said we should help a Hindu become a better Hindu, a Muslim become a better Muslim, a Catholic become a better Catholic."

Quoting Mr. Zima from his new book Mother Teresa: The Case for the Cause :

If this book will be of any profit to you, you must separate the Mother Teresa of shadow from the Mother Teresa of substance. The popular image formed in head and heart of Mother Teresa must be put aside for the objective nonemotional reading of the evidence. Your challenge is to ask yourself the following questions:

1.) If anyone else who was not Mother Teresa said and did these things, what would I think? How would I respond?

2.) Did Mother Teresa follow the faith once delivered to the saints?

3.) By her words and deeds, did Mother Teresa follow in the footsteps of the saints who preceded her?

4.) Did Mother Teresa believe and consistently teach that only in truth can man find salvation?

5.) Did Mother Teresa believe and consistently teach that no one knows God except anyone to whom Jesus wishes to reveal him?

6.) Did Mother Teresa teach another gospel?

7.) Did Mother Teresa believe in a new God?

To further describe the theological perspective from which our guest is making his evaluation, according to Mr. Zima,

"A Traditionalist Catholic is not a Sedevancantist, Neo-Traditional, Neo-Conservative, or Liberal Catholic. A Traditionalist Catholic believes Pope Benedict XVI is the 265th pope of the Roman Catholic Church. That traditional religious forms are nothing without the traditional faith. That blind obedience to the hierarchy of the Church is not virtue but vice. And that to be a Catholic a person is bound to the official and authoritative teaching of the Church."

Mr. Zima is a former religious brother of two communities: the Brothers of Our Lady of Reconciliation and the Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. He has devoted much of his life to theological and philosophical studies as well as the evangelism of Catholicism. He has taught Sacred Scripture, as well as RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults) and has been a Catholic youth director at a parish in Oregon. He has been associated with many different Catholic organizations including the St. Augustine Institute of Catholic Studies, the St. Anthony of Padua Chapter of Una Voce, and the Fatima Crusader.

He knew and visited the late Fr. Malachi Martin, a theological expert at the Second Vatican Council and author of The Jesuits and many other popular Catholic books. He has worked to found Catholic monasteries with Catholic priests. He has written to Cardinal Ratzinger before he became Pope Benedict XVI (An Open Letter and Request to Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger), and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, to address the theological problems in the Church.

CAVEAT LECTOR: This interview is not to be mistaken as an expression of "modern ecumenism" between the Reformed Baptist host and his Roman Catholic guest on this radio broadcast. The host merely believes that a critical examination of Mother Teresa from a scholarly Catholic perspective is not only something that may never be heard or seen elsewhere in the media, but is a valuable topic for discussion in a day and age where the desire to preserve theological purity has been replaced with sentimentalism in both modern Catholicism and Evangelicalism. In addition to that, when considering the life of a much beloved Catholic figure who is a hero to countless millions worldwide spanning religious boundaries, the host believes if a Fundamentalist or Evangelical Protestant were to provide the critique, many would not seriously evaluate the contents of this broadcast due to a misconception that "religious bigotry" was the underlying motive of this discussion.

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