Home » Behind the Catholic Counter » Why We Don’t and Won’t Ever Carry Richard Rohr

Why We Don’t and Won’t Ever Carry Richard Rohr

At Aquinas and More we have always had a policy that we will only carry product that is true to Catholic teaching. Why carry product that undermines the Church unless you want to destroy your own business? Could you imagine Coke or Pepsi selling literature or sending out spokesmen that praise the competition as being just as good as their product or mislead people about what their product is? For some reason there are wildly popular authors who do just that within the Catholic Church.

One such author is Richard Rohr. He is a staple for St. Anthony Messenger Press and gives retreats across the country. I’ll be blunt. Fr. Rohr’s ideas about salvation are heretical. He just published a new book, Why Be Catholic, which I spent some time looking through. I may have missed it, but amid all of the talk about the need for community and the Church’s position on social justice I couldn’t find anything about Truth or salvation. It seems to me that any discussion of “Why be Catholic”? needs to start and end with salvation and Truth. Otherwise, the Church is just a social club like the Elks.

Here are some links explaining Father Rohr’s “theology”. Richard Rohr is a new-age heretic who wraps his heresy in biblical quotes. Here are some samples:

 

  • Leon Keller

    Please let me know when the The Parish Book of Chant is available. Thank you.

  • Augustin56

    @Becky Sometimes the truth does put one off.  Usually, it’s when the one being put off is on the wrong side of truth.

  • Augustin56

    @Becky Sometimes the truth does put one off.  Usually, it’s when the one being put off is on the wrong side of truth.

  • Augustin56

    @AwesomeSauce Open minded doesn’t mean one leaves one’s well-formed conscience out of the loop.  We must be cautious these days, because there are wolves in sheeps clothing, going around teaching heresy.

  • Augustin56

    @AwesomeSauce Open minded doesn’t mean one leaves one’s well-formed conscience out of the loop.  We must be cautious these days, because there are wolves in sheeps clothing, going around teaching heresy.

  • Augustin56

    If someone offered you a glass of the very finest wine in the world, and put a teaspoon of sewerage in it, would you drink it?   No?  Why not?  Because it could harm you, right?!  Of course.

    Likewise, unless we have those teaching us the faith who are 100% faithful to the Church’s teaching, then we should likewise not indulge ourselves.  Richard Rohr has more than a teaspoon of sewerage in his beliefs.  Like Martin Luther, he thinks he knows better than the Church what Christ taught.  Don’t walk, RUN to the nearest exit with respect to this guy!  There are a lot of good, faithful teachers of the faith that we can rely on.  Fr. Robert Barron is one. 

    Word of advice:  Anytime you hear anyone say they have a “new revelation” with regard to the teachings of Christ, RUN.  There are no new public revelations.  Divine revelation ceased with the death of the last Apostle.  Since that time, we’ve seen lots of heresies pop up.  I don’t know that there are any new heresies at this point, either.  Just old heresies under new names.

    Just to be clear, what is a heresy?  The obstinate post-baptismal denial of some truth which must be believed with divine and catholic faith, or it is likewise an obstinate doubt concerning the same.  All it takes is one denial, or obstinate doubt, folks.

    And what is the penalty for heretics in the Church?  According to the Code of Canon Law, a heretic is automatically excommunicated, latae sententiae.  

    c1364 
    1. With due regard for can. 194, part 1, n. 2, an apostate from the faith, a heretic or a schismatic incurs automatic (latae sententiae) excommunication and if a cleric, he can also be punished by the penalties mentioned in can. 1336, part 1, nn. 1, 2, and 3.
    So, be careful who you follow and give kudos to.  We can be guilty of sin by cooperating in the sin of another.  There are nine ways in which we can sin by participating in the sin of another. 
    1. By counsel (to give advice, one’s opinion or instructions.)
    2. By command (to demand, to order, such as in the military.)
    3. By consent (to give permission, to approve, to agree to.)
    4. By provocation (to dare.)
    5. By PRAISE or FLATTERY (to cheer, to applaud, to commend.)
    6. By concealment (to hide the action, to cover-up.)
    7. By partaking (to take part, to participate.)
    8. By SILENCE (by playing dumb, by remaining quiet.)
    9. By DEFENSE of the ill done (to justify, to argue in favor.)
    The best we can do is pray for Richard Rohr, that he come back into the fold.

  • Augustin56

    If someone offered you a glass of the very finest wine in the world, and put a teaspoon of sewerage in it, would you drink it?   No?  Why not?  Because it could harm you, right?!  Of course.

    Likewise, unless we have those teaching us the faith who are 100% faithful to the Church’s teaching, then we should likewise not indulge ourselves.  Richard Rohr has more than a teaspoon of sewerage in his beliefs.  Like Martin Luther, he thinks he knows better than the Church what Christ taught.  Don’t walk, RUN to the nearest exit with respect to this guy!  There are a lot of good, faithful teachers of the faith that we can rely on.  Fr. Robert Barron is one. 

    Word of advice:  Anytime you hear anyone say they have a “new revelation” with regard to the teachings of Christ, RUN.  There are no new public revelations.  Divine revelation ceased with the death of the last Apostle.  Since that time, we’ve seen lots of heresies pop up.  I don’t know that there are any new heresies at this point, either.  Just old heresies under new names.

    Just to be clear, what is a heresy?  The obstinate post-baptismal denial of some truth which must be believed with divine and catholic faith, or it is likewise an obstinate doubt concerning the same.  All it takes is one denial, or obstinate doubt, folks.

    And what is the penalty for heretics in the Church?  According to the Code of Canon Law, a heretic is automatically excommunicated, latae sententiae.  

    c1364 
    1. With due regard for can. 194, part 1, n. 2, an apostate from the faith, a heretic or a schismatic incurs automatic (latae sententiae) excommunication and if a cleric, he can also be punished by the penalties mentioned in can. 1336, part 1, nn. 1, 2, and 3.
    So, be careful who you follow and give kudos to.  We can be guilty of sin by cooperating in the sin of another.  There are nine ways in which we can sin by participating in the sin of another. 
    1. By counsel (to give advice, one’s opinion or instructions.)
    2. By command (to demand, to order, such as in the military.)
    3. By consent (to give permission, to approve, to agree to.)
    4. By provocation (to dare.)
    5. By PRAISE or FLATTERY (to cheer, to applaud, to commend.)
    6. By concealment (to hide the action, to cover-up.)
    7. By partaking (to take part, to participate.)
    8. By SILENCE (by playing dumb, by remaining quiet.)
    9. By DEFENSE of the ill done (to justify, to argue in favor.)
    The best we can do is pray for Richard Rohr, that he come back into the fold.

  • Augustin56

    @work4justice He’s more like a “profit” than a prophet.  He’s just another Martin Luther trying to pass himself off as an authentic Catholic.  The Church has never taught doctrinal error, nor will it ever.  That’s not to say stray individuals can’t, though, in the name of the Church.  You should be cautious about to whom you listen!

  • Augustin56

    @work4justice He’s more like a “profit” than a prophet.  He’s just another Martin Luther trying to pass himself off as an authentic Catholic.  The Church has never taught doctrinal error, nor will it ever.  That’s not to say stray individuals can’t, though, in the name of the Church.  You should be cautious about to whom you listen!

  • mom4kids

    Thank you!  I went to a Lenten discussion of Julian of Norwich only to find the priest was a huge fan of Rohr.  I was appalled at his complete disregard for what the Bible teaches and what Jesus Himself said about salvation.  This is the second priest I have encountered in which Jesus is missing from the discussion.  The emphasis on community/unity obliterates the reality of sin and salvation.  I call it the “rainbows and unicorns” version of salvation history.  I went home and opened my Bible, the CCC, and my Fundamentals of Christology book to see if I missed something over the past few decades in my studies.  Unfortunately, many good people thought this priest was a great speaker. Jesus, Mary, and Joseph pray for us!

  • Tyler Borden

    I was raised Catholic and moved away from the church over time because of many prejudices that I saw in their teachings. I recently discovered Richard Rohr and he has sparked my renewed interest in the church.

    • Hopefully your interest will be renewed to the Truth of the Church and not Richard Rohr’s version of it.

  • kim

    It is unfortunate that you can’t trust people to read and discern for themselves. Rohr and Rohlheiser are two of the people that manage to illuminate things in a such a way that keeps Jesus’ message of love and grace at the center. And remember, Jesus was considered a heretic in his day for doing the exact same thing…

    • Ian

      How does our criticism affect people’s ability to discern? Isn’t it through criticism and thought that discernment happens?

    • You assume that we have some ability to prevent people from reading Richard Rohr by not carrying his books?

  • Michael Moylan

    An open mind is a terrible thing to waste. People who are certain frighten me definitely.
    Your stance reminds me of the Crusades. What would you do to protect your opinions?

    • Ian

      The Crusades were a defensive action coming after several hundred years of violent Muslim expansion.

      I am certain that what the Catholic Church teaches is true. If I wasn’t, I wouldn’t be Catholic.

      Father Rohr does not follow what the Church teaches so he is not following Christ.

    • The Crusades were a counter attack after centuries of retreat from Muslim armies.

  • Michael Lennon

    Your first sentence give you away, “…we only carry product that is in tune to Catholic teaching.”. Is that really your job? Or is to promote provide provide product that promotes truth. Everyone (including you & me) has a “point of view.” But it is, after all, simply a “view from a point”. You might consider taking a look from others’ points of view. Even the namesake of your institution, Thomas Aquinas, embraced several ideas put forward by Aristotle—whom he called “the Philosopher”—and attempted to synthesize Aristotelian philosophy with the principles of Christianity. Why would he do that? Because God speaks his truth through whomever he wishes. Maybe you can re-think your positions some…if you are free to think critically and have an open (to God) mind.

    • Yes, it actually is our job. We run a CATHOLIC store, not a spiritual store with a vaguely Catholic flavor.

      Aquinas used the parts of Aristotle that could be reconciled with the Truth of Catholicism. He didn’t take Aristotelian philosophy and declare that it was all true.

  • finally

    You know who likes Rohr? Superficial thinkers. Those that operate by emotion only. They are hooked on his inchoate, and absurd, ideology. He will give you a few Christian sounding things, but when unpacked you get new age gobbledygook.

    • kim

      As a very (overly) analytical person, I’m going to say exactly the opposite is true. Taking the Bible as a literal truth is lazy and superficial. We all find teachers where we need them.

      • Straw man. No one suggested taking the Bible literally here.

        Yes, find teachers where you need them but make sure they are actually teaching you the Truth.

        • kim

          Your type of condescension is really disheartening and one of the reasons so many people leave the Catholic church. Assuming that you know “the Truth” or who the “right” teachers are is pretty presumptive, perhaps along the lines of the Pharisees.

          • No, I just presume that Jesus knew what He was saying when He entrusted the Catholic Church with the keys to Heaven.

          • kim

            I don’t believe that Jesus ever uttered the words “Catholic
            Church”, nor that he came to create some new “special group”. It makes us feel secure if we think we’re in that special group, but it’s exactly what we’re warned against. We obviously have to agree to disagree, so I wish you peace.

          • Jesus actually did tell St. Peter that He would build His Church on St. Peter. He also said that the Truth He preached was for everyone. So no, He may not have said “Catholic Church” specifically but He did say that He was creating a Church and that the Church would protect the Truth.

            He also said that in later times there would come all kinds of false prophets preaching other gospels and not to listen to them.

            Again, you have used a straw man argument. No one is saying that we should feel secure because we’re Catholic. That’s a very Protestant belief.

            As Catholics we believe that while the Church holds the keys to the kingdom, it is up to us to live morally and die in a state of grace. St. Paul himself said that we should never stop striving for salvation because it isn’t guaranteed.

  • Ana Z

    It seems your understanding of Richard Rohr is about as developed as your understanding of the Elks. Richard may have started out Catholic in the same way the Elks started out as a social club. In both cases, they evolved into something larger. The word Catholic means universal. Where is the harm in opening one’s heart toward loving acceptance? I’m puzzled why the church continues to shun and judge. It serves no one.

    • You misunderstand the meaning of universal in its application to the Church. The Truth of Christ is available for everyone. Truth, by its nature, does not encompass everything and Christ was very clear about accepting what is true.

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