Much of Fr. Jeremy Moiser's letter of May 18 is so abstruse that it is not easy to judge whether or not his views are heretical. But one statement is so blatantly wrong that it demands an answer. Fr. Moiser writes: "In this context, any body which sets itself up as an authoritative teaching body has misconceived the event of Christ."
The Catholic Church does not set itself up: Christ set it up! "Go therefore and teach all nations." St. Paul certainly believed he belonged to an authoritative teaching body. Otherwise his words to Timothy (2 Timothy 4, 3) would not make sense: "For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching. but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own likings, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander into myths."
Fr. Moiser's assertion that "all positions are reformable. whether in dogmatics or in morals" contrasts strangely with St. Paul: "Even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to that which we preached to you, let him be accursed." (Galatians 1, 8).
If all positions in dogmatics are reformable, presumably this applies to the Resurrection. This again makes nonsense of St. Paul : "If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile." (I Corinthians 15, 17). And if all positions in morals are reformable then we can ignore St. Paul telling us to put on compassion, kindness, lowliness, etc., and to avoid idolatry, jealousy, selfishness. drunkenness, etc.
Why does Fr. Moiser say that "faith, not revelation, is the primary postulation of Christianity" and then cut off the branch he is sitting on? If all positions are reformable, there's nothing. or nobody to have faith in! "Credo" must be retranslated "I guess".
Fr. Petroe Howell 18 Charles Street, Cheadle, Staffordshire.