Friday, January 15, 2016

A Summary of Robert Sungenis and the Jews


This blog was created to document and provide a counter-balance to Robert Sungenis' problematic views and history related to the Jewish people, beginning in September 2006 and up to the present. The following topical directory is available to help readers more easily navigate the articles on this blog. "Labels" are also available on the right-hand side of the blog in order to locate articles that touch on various topics.


Over the past couple of years, Robert Sungenis and some of his close associates have returned to making false accusations against his diocese and former ordinary, Bishop Kevin Rhoades. Sungenis has also subsequently published an article that violates one of his many promises to restrict himself to purely theological matters when Jews were involved and to maintain charity "as if the bishop were present with us."  This broken promise is merely the latest in a long line of broken promises. As a result, some articles documenting Sungenis's problematic views about the Jewish people and the falsehood of his accusations against his diocese and former ordinary have again been made available to the public.

Sungenis has gone to great lengths to portray his conflict with Bishop Rhoades and other Catholics as stemming from his efforts to defend the purity of Catholic doctrine in regard to the Jewish people. His claim is completely and demonstrably false.  While the most recent articles below deal with doctrinal issues, we have presented them primarily in order to illustrate that Sungenis's accusations of "heresy" against his critics (including his own bishop) have been and continue to be a canard used by him to take the focus off the actual reason he's gotten into so much hot water with his bishop and so many others:  his anti-Jewish prejudice.  This anti-Jewish prejudice was publicly expressed for over a decade on issues that have nothing to do with theology -- ranging from historical revisionism to conspiracy theories about Jews. However, even in regard to doctrinal issues and scriptural interpretations involving Jews, Sungenis has made numerous errors because his theology is tainted by his prejudice against them (for example, see here and here). He has repeatedly demonstrated that if Jews are involved, he is unable to maintain any semblance of fairness and objectivity.

Robert Sungenis and the U.S. Catholic Catechism for Adults 
Was Sungenis the first and/or only one to notice a problematic sentence on page 131 of the USCCA and did he single-handedly cause the U.S. bishops to change it, as he publicly claims? Did the U.S. bishops "vindicate" Sungenis's personal views on "supersessionism," as he also publicly claims?  Was the conspiracy theory he publicly floated about the U.S. bishops true? What role did Sungenis actually play in regard to the change to the problematic sentence on page 131 of the USCCA?  Is he uniquely qualified to handle Jewish issues?  These questions and more are answered.

Sungenis's Continued Misuse of "Supersessionism"
Sungenis unfortunately continues to treat the term "Supersessionism" as if it is magisterial.  It is not of Catholic origin and appears in no magisterial texts. It's a loaded term that can and does carry very different connotations, implications and nuances.  Some versions of supersessionism are not in accord with Catholic teaching. Sungenis himself holds to a version of "supersessionism" that then Cardinal Dulles aptly characterized as "crude" and that we have characterized as "extreme." Click here and here (scroll down to "Supersessionism, Redux") for more in-depth discussion of Sungenis's problems as they pertain to supersessionism.

Is Sungenis Right About a Future Special Conversion of the Jewish People to Christ?
Short answer?  No.  In fact, contrary to Sungenis, there is widespread evidence from the Church Fathers, the Catechism of the Catholic Church, Scripture, various saints, Popes and renowned scholars that there will be a future, special conversion of the Jewish people to Christ. Click herehere and here for even more evidence that Sungenis is incorrect.

Sungenis on Romans 11:  Theological Bias in Biblical Exegesis
David Palm discusses several of Sungenis's errors regarding Romans 11 and the Jewish people.

Why Sungenis is Wrong to Insist on Saying the Old Covenant is "Revoked"
Sungenis continues to insist on using a word in relation to the Old Covenant that the magisterium has never used:  revoked.  Take a look the facts and reasons why avoiding this term makes sense. You can read more here as well.

Why Sungenis is Wrong to Consider the New Covenant a Punishment of the Jewish People
Watch on as David Palm exposes Sungenis's erroneous "theology of punishment" at the Catholic Answers Forum. Click here and here for two additional posts by Palm dealing with Sungenis's fundamental error about the establishment of the New Covenant.

Why Sungenis is Wrong to Deny the Inherent Jewishness of the Catholic Church
David Palm explains how Sungenis's anti-Jewish bias leads him to flirt with multiple heresies.

Is Sungenis Right About the Identity of the "Olive Tree" and "Root" in Romans 11?
Sungenis insists that the "root" of Romans 11 is Christ alone. Unfortunately, it seems that his anti-Jewish inclinations are influencing his theology again.  There's a considerable number of Catholic witnesses who disagree with him, including the Catechism of the Catholic Church, Church Fathers, renowned Scripture scholars and even Pope Benedict XVI. And it doesn't help that he was caught cropping quotes to make Church Fathers appear to say the opposite of what they actually said.

Sungenis's Theology of Prejudice Against the Jewish People
Several examples are presented that demonstrate how Sungenis's bias against the Jewish people has adversely colored his theology:  The Conversion of the Jews, The Antichrist as a Jew, The Good Friday "Demand",  Pope Benedict XVI on the Jews, and more.

All in the Family:  Christians, Jews and God
An in-depth look at what the Church has taught about our relationship with the Jewish people, and the Jewish people's continuing relationship with God. In particular, a critique of two opposing errors common in certain circles:  the dual covenant theory and extreme supersessionism. (Sungenis falls in the latter camp).

Two Narratives and 15 False Claims About Bishop Rhoades
Sungenis and his friend Rick DeLano have labored to create a false narrative about what happened between Sungenis and Bishop Rhoades and why. In the process, they have spread many false claims about His Excellency, 15 of which are exposed and corrected in this piece.

Sungenis Privately Admits He No Longer Believes Bishop Rhoades is Teaching Heresy on the Old Covenant But Continues to Publicly Accuse Him of It Regardless
Remarkably, Bob Sungenis privately admitted that he no longer believes Bishop Rhoades holds to a  heresy in regard to the Old Covenant (Bob now thinks the real problem was some other "evil man" who was the "mastermind behind the whole thing")...but that hasn't stopped him from continuing to publicly make the slanderous charge against His Excellency, regardless.

Sungenis Comes Out at the Catholic Answers Debate David Palm
A close supporter and member of Sungenis's inner circle came out at the CAF anonymously to take a dishonest shot at an article written by RSATJ contributors, only to be confronted and corrected.  Suddenly, Bob did something he rarely does:  he made an extended, online appearance at the CAF himself.  See how Bob was repeatedly challenged by David to defend his charges and how he repeatedly failed to do so...and much more.  The entire debate/thread at the CAF is very enlightening.

Answering Sungenis's Latest "Response" on the "Bishop Rhoades Affair"
Some of Bob's latest errors and dishonesty in his 34-page response regarding his interactions with Bishop Rhoades are exposed.

Answering Sungenis on the Conversion of the Jews...Again
Bob's latest fundamentalist-style attempt to deny this traditional, positive Church teaching about the Jewish people is answered...again.

Contra Sungenis on Elijah and the Conversion of the Jews
Bob has made accusations of supposed "blunders" and "exegetical duplicity" on the part of the Church Fathers in regard to the role of Elijah in the "Conversion of the Jews."  But David Palm shows that it is Sungenis who has blundered and behaved impiously.

Defending Pope Benedict XVI from Sungenis's Latest Attack
Bob has again treated Pope Benedict XVI very disrespectfully because Bob remains unable (or unwilling) to read carefully and charitably when Jews are involved.

Rick DeLano Crafts a Conspiracy Theory (01/28/12): A detailed response to Sungenis board member Rick DeLano concerning numerous factual errors and allegations he made concerning why Bishop Rhoades told Sungenis to take the name "Catholic" off of his organization (it had nothing to do with page 131 of the USCCA or the dual covenant error).


A History of Unjust Attacks Against Jews:

Timelines of Events

The Unjust Attacks of Bob Sungenis Against His Bishop:

Sungenis Smears Bishop, Continues to Mislead and Distort the Record (07/06/07)

Bishop Rhoades Sets The Record Straight (02/21/08)

By Sungenis Alone (03/29/08):

Slandering the Bishop, Again (05/13/08)

Bishop Rhoades and the Dual Covenant Theory (09/24/09)

Sungenis vs. Sungenis vs. Jones (Sungenis and Jones can't seem to get their slanders of Bishop Rhoades straight)

On Plagiarism:

On Fraudulent Quotations:

On Tainted Sources

On Sungenis' "Doctorate":

Denied Imprimaturs:

On Conspiracy Theories: