Pope Francis and the marriages in the Society of Saint-Pius X: Non possumus – We cannot enter into a canonical structure submitting ourselves to a modernist authority

Pope Francis and the marriages in the Society of Saint-Pius X:  Non possumus – We cannot enter into a canonical structure submitting ourselves to a modernist authority

Sermon of Father Philippe François (FSSPX) given on Easter Sunday 16th April 2017 at Le Trévoux (Britanny, France) where he exercises the functions of chaplain to the Little Sisters of Saint Francis

In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.

My reverend sisters, my dear brethren,

The grace of the feast of Easter is to fortify our faith.  And if our faith in Our Lord is fortified, by the same token our faith in His only and well-loved Bride, the Holy, Catholic and Roman Church is also fortified.  And that is very necessary in the testing times in which we live.

Two weeks ago, as you have learnt, Rome granted with certain conditions to the priests of the SSPX the jurisdiction to carry out marriages.  “Good news!” my cobbler said to me, “we are nearing the end of the tunnel.”

In reality, this jurisdiction was already given to us by the Church under the principles of the law which applies in times of crisis, in the state of necessity in which we find ourselves.  For almost fifty years, marriages which have been carried out in the priories of the SSPX and of Tradition have been valid.

But if one accepts the decision of Rome, one must accept the new code of canon law and the conciliar tribunals which apply this new code.

Now this new code destroys marriageIt changes the definition of marriage.  First of all this sacrament no longer has as its first end procreation and the catholic education of children, but it puts as its first end the good relationships between the husband and wife and their mutual support.  And this definition, you see, has led to tens of thousands of marriages being annulled during the last forty years, because, as the spouses no longer got on, the conciliar ecclesiastical judges said that there had been no marriage.  And these declarations of annulment of marriages, which had been concluded validly and then declared annulled, have accelerated again by the procedure which the Pope himself put in place eighteen months ago and which facilitates annulments even further.

This happened two weeks ago; and then almost two years ago it was the powers to hear confession which was accorded to the priests of the Fraternity, as if they did not already have these powers.  Now these powers to hear confession validly, the Church gives to your priests in a time of crisis, because canon law foresees supplied jurisdiction in the exceptional circumstances in which we live.  Archbishop Lefebvre often reminded us of one of the great principles of Saint Pius X’s code of canon law: ” the salvation of souls is the supreme law of the Church”

These two events and others show us that a process of canonical regularization is in train since the time of Benedict XVI and with Pope Francis in regard to the SSPX and also in regard to the whole family of Tradition since the time of Benedict XVI and with Pope Francis .

This process of canonical regularization at present underway can be compared to the process of setting fire to a log of green wood.  When one throws a log of green wood onto the fire, it is incapable of catching fire, for there is an obstacle: it is the sap.  So the flame begins to lick the log in order to heat it up and to drive out the sap.  Once the sap is driven off, the log takes fire.  It is the same in our case, there would be an obstacle to the canonical statute – the reciprocal mistrust between the conciliar world and us.  The Pope’s gestures of “ benevolence” have as their aim the removal of this obstacle.  These gestures do not formally imply canonical dependence on the Roman authorities.  Once the obstacle of mistrust is removed, not much will prevent the granting of the definitive statute, which is the statute of the personal prelature, which has been under discussion between the superiors of the SSPX and the Holy See for six years.  So there would be the granting of this personal prelature, this time with effective dependence on the Holy SeeNotably the bishop, superior of the personal prelature, will be nominated by the Pope and therefore will be able to be revoked by the Sovereign Pontiff.

So the question is posed: can we enter into such a canonical structure?

To answer this question, my dear brethren, we must ask ourselves if the situation in Rome has changed to such an extent that we could envisage a canonical solution, a thing which we regarded as impossible just a short while ago.  Alas!  We are forced to state that nothing essential has changed:

The actions of the Pope are more and more serious.  The accumulation of scandals during the four years of his pontificate makes us really think that with him modernism has become flesh.

The reaction of some conservative cardinals or prelates, although it is courageous and merits being praised, does not however call into question the principles of the crisis; on the contrary they cling to the Second Vatican Council which apparently was properly interpreted by Pope Benedict XVI .

— The attitude of the Holy See with regard to Tradition is not benevolent – far from it.  The experience of the Franciscans of the Immaculate reminds us of this as well as the treatment suffered by Cardinal Burke and the other cardinals who opposed, on the occasion of the synod, the post-synodal declaration on the family Amoris LaetitiaIn the end the demands of Rome with regard to us are basically still the same.  We must still, even if it is asked less insistently, accept the council with its religious liberty, its ecumenism and its collegiality.

So what precisely are the grounds for our previous refusal of an agreement with Rome?  More exactly can we accept an agreement with a neo-modernist Rome?  Such an acceptance would make us enter into conciliar pluralism.  It would silence our attacks against modern errors and would put our faith in immediate danger.

Consequently the canonical solution can only be envisaged with a Rome which has been doctrinally converted and which will have proved its conversion by working for the reign of Our Lord Jesus Christ and by fighting against the adversaries of this reign.

By putting ourselves in the hands of the Roman authorities we would put in peril our particular good no less than the common good of the Church.

* First of all our own good: for we are responsible for our soul and thus of our faith.  Now without the faith one cannot be saved ( Hebrews 11,6) and nobody can pass off this responsibility onto others.

* Next we would put in jeopardy the common good of the Church.  In fact we are not masters of the faith in the sense that we cannot modify it at our pleasure.  The faith is the good of the Church, because it is through the faith that she lives the life of her Divine Spouse.  The faith is a common good not only because it is common to all Catholics but also because the participation of everyone is necessary (although not in the same measure for everyone) in order to preserve it.  Confirmation makes of you, my dear brethren, soldiers of Christ.  Every Christian must be ready to run risks in order to defend the faith.  And the priestly character, joined to the mission of the Church, gives to priests the sacred duty of preaching the faith and of defending it publicly by combatting error.  We are members of the Church militant which is attacked on all sides by error.  To no longer publicly raise our voices against error is to become the accomplices of error.  And this is what we are living in Tradition, notably since 2011.  In 2011 the abominable scandal of Assisi was renewed and the superiors of the Society unfortunately, we deplore it, were silent.  In 2015 the unthinkable canonization of John-Paul II took place and the superiors of the Society were silent.

So it is impossible today to put ourselves, by a canonical solution, in the hands of the neo-modernist authorities because of their neo-modernism.  That is the true obstacle to our recognition by these authorities.

In doing this, take note my dear brethren, far from challenging the authority of the Pope, we are convinced that we render to him the most important service, which is that of truth.  By our prayers, we beg the Immaculate Heart of Mary to obtain for the Sovereign Pontiff the grace of doctrinal conversion, so that once again “he confirms his brothers in the faith” (Luke 22, 32).  For we are Catholics, so we are Roman, we are Roman Catholics attached indefectibly to the seat of Peter, to the infallible teaching of all the successors of Peter up to Vatican Council II.  We are of eternal Rome, which is the irreconcilable enemy of neo-protestant and neo-modernist Rome.  There can be no peace possible with conciliar Rome.

Also we pray every day for the superiors of the SSPX that they do not fall into the trap which is being tendered to our dear Society.  That they may rediscover the prudence, fearlessness and firmness of Mgr. Lefebvre in his fight for Christ the King!

So we cannot – non possumus - enter into a canonical structure submitting ourselves to a modernist authority.

We say this because it is our duty.  How so?

* It is our duty firstly with regard to Our Lord and HIs Holy Church. We do not have the right to run risks by making peace with those who betray them.

* Then it is our duty for ourselves, because we have our souls to save and we cannot save ourselves without the faith whole and entire.

* Finally it is our duty with regard to the faithful who have recourse to our ministry.  We do not have the right to lead them very gradually towards the poisoned pastures of Vatican II.

My reverend sisters, my dear brethren, in the present torment and confusion, we must remain faithful to authentic Catholic principles and stay rooted in them.  And so that it may be the light which enlightens us and guides our steps, we must draw the practical consequences and apply them rigorously in our every-day life and in our daily attitudes.  Coherence and non-contradiction are the logical consequences of full and entire adhesion to the Truth, which is Our Lord Jesus Christ.  As cardinal Pie said: charity which is the bond of perfection, must be dictated and regulated by the truth and it is in this spirit of charity which we must act.

So on this Easter Sunday, the present hour is the hour of the beautiful virtue of hope, for we see perhaps with more clarity, the insufficiency of human means.  But Our Lord rises from the tomb today, as yesterday, and with him His Church!

May the Blessed Virgin Mary, may Our Lady of Good Hope, who alone on Easter morning knew how to maintain hope, may the Blessed Virgin Mary maintain in our hearts the divine hope, the Holy Hope, that which pleases God, that which will not be disappointed for eternity!

In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.

(Sermon published in “Le Sel de la terre” n° 101)

Friends and Benefactors Letter number # 24, January 2017 (updated with pictures)

Letter from the Dominicans of Avrillé

No. 24: Jan 2017

Arise!

 

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Bethlehem

 

“Arise, O man; for you God has become man. ‘Awake, sleeper, and arise from among the dead, and Christ will enlighten thee.’ [Eph. 5:14] For you, I repeat, God has become man. If He had not thus been born into time, you would have been dead for all eternity. Never would you have been freed from sinful flesh, if He had not taken upon Himself the likeness of sinful flesh. Everlasting misery would have engulfed you, if He had not taken this merciful form. You would not have been restored to life, had He not submitted to your death; you would have fallen, had He not succored you; you would have perished, had He not come.

Let us joyfully celebrate the coming of our salvation and redemption. Let us celebrate the festal day on which the great and timeless One came from the great and timeless day to this brief span of our day…”

-St. Augustine, Sermon for Christmas [Sermon 185]

The Year of Luther

“What unites us is greater than what divides us” ?

“In 2017, Lutherans and Catholics will celebrate together the 500th anniversary of the start of the Reformation.  Today, Lutherans and Catholics have the joy of understanding each other better and better, and of cooperating and respecting each other more and more. They have finally recognized that what unites them is greater than what divides them.”

[“From Conflict to Communion”, report from the Lutheran-Catholic Commission (2013), of which Card. Müller, Prefect for the Cong. of the Doctrine of the Faith, is a member]

 

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Statue of Luther enthroned by Pope Francis in the Vatican

 

A smiling Pope Francis receives a copy of Luther’s 95 “theses”

Last October 31st, the Pope was in Sweden to inaugurate “The Year of Luther” with the Lutherans.  He signed a joint declaration with the representative of Lutheranism in which he repeats this sophism: “What unites us is greater than what divides us”.

In reality, what divides us from the Protestants is much greater than what unites us, because what divides us is the Faith.

Protestants do not have divine Faith;  they believe in Luther, but they do not believe in God.  Regarding this point, let us quote the Catechism of the Crisis in the Church:

“He who denies even just one single dogma has lost the Faith.  This is because he does not accept Revelation from God, but establishes himself the judge of what must be believed.”

●   Isn’t it possible to deny one dogma while continuing to believe the others, and therefore – at least partially – conserve the virtue of Faith?

“… [H]e who dissents even in one point from divinely revealed truth absolutely rejects all faith, since he thereby refuses to honor God as the supreme truth and the formal motive of faith” [Leo XIII, Satis Cognitum, 1896].  Pope Leo XIII then quotes St. Augustine, speaking of heretics:  “In many things they are with me, in a few things not with me; but in those few things in which they are not with me the many things in which they are, will not profit them”.

●  What should we think of this oft-repeated slogan according to which, in our relations with “separated Christians”, we must consider what unites us rather than what divides us?

In matters of Faith, it is absolutely false and contrary to the traditional teaching of the Church to say that we must “consider what unites us rather than what divides us”.   This would give the impression that these differences only concern details of little importance, whereas, in reality, it is a question of the fullness of revealed truth.

[Fr. Matthias GAUDRON, Catechism of the Crisis in the Church]

We have in common with the Protestants our human nature, and, perhaps, a few natural virtues, but Protestants have neither the true Faith, nor supernatural Hope, nor infused Charity [except in the case of invincible ignorance, if a Protestant is Protestant in name only, through no fault of his own, being ready to accept all the dogmas of the Catholic Church, and therefore being already Catholic in his heart]. That constitutes an enormous division!  In Heaven, there are only Catholics; there are no Protestants, because to be saved one must have the true Faith: “He that believeth and is baptized, shall be saved, but he that believeth not shall be condemned” [Mk. 16:16].   Between the two, as Our Lord says in the Gospel, “there is a great abyss, so that they who would pass from hence, cannot, nor from thence come hither” [Lk. 16:26].   Such is the Gospel truth: between Catholics and Protestants there is a vast chasm which cannot be crossed.  Of course, during this life, it may be crossed if the Protestant comes back to the Church, but after death, it is too late.

How Luther invented Lutheranism

As a monk, Luther had a tortured conscience, feeling separated from God.  Was it a temptation, a scruple, or was he just not making enough of an effort to stay in the grace of God?  Whatever the case may be, since he felt unable to change himself, he decided to change religion: it was much easier.  From now on, it was no longer necessary to serve God, to obey Him, for that was “impossible”; it was sufficient to have “confidence” in Christ, and all was well.  The Dictionary of Catholic Theology thus exposes the doctrine of Luther:

Over our corrupt souls, God places a “mantle”, that is, the merits of Jesus Christ.  This “justification” is entirely exterior, a marble covering over the rotten wood of a cabin.  In the work of our salvation, Jesus Christ – and Jesus Christ alone – is active, and we have no part in it; it would be an insult to want to cooperate by our works in what He has over-abundantly accomplished.  And how does one obtain this “mantle”?   […]  By Faith – or, to be exact – by confidence in Jesus Christ.  The soul will continue to produce fruits of death, but thanks to the confidence in his heart, the sinner will merit that God may “attribute” to him the merits of Jesus Christ.

On August 1st, 1521, in a letter to Melanchthon, Luther pronounced the famous formula that summarizes his new religion: “Pecca fortiter, sed fortius crede” (“Sin greatly, but believe still more greatly”).

The year of Fatima

Instead of the anniversary of Luther’s revolt, let us celebrate the anniversary of Fatima.

The Blessed Virgin is an “anti-Luther”.  Luther claimed that it is impossible to obey God; Our Lady, whose motto is “fiat”, tells us to “do whatsoever He shall say to you” (John 2:5).  At Fatima, the Blessed Virgin exhorts sinners to convert, and change their lives.

What’s more, Our Lady gives us the means to do so with the devotion of the Five First Saturdays.  Doing (and living) this devotion is the best way to celebrate this centenary, and to make reparation for the scandalous “Year of Luther”.

Community Chronicle

September 18th:  Resumption of their priestly studies for the Scholastic Brothers and the Seminarians, and resumption of activities for the Third Order.

Fathers Marie-Dominique and Marie-Laurent are in Paris for the first meeting of the year for the Fraternity of St. Thomas, which groups together our tertiaries from Normandy, Paris, and Chartres, accompanied by their many children.  Mass, Divine Office, Rosary, alternate with instructions on spirituality and doctrine, in a family atmosphere.  In the following weeks, it will be the turn of the other Fraternities in Alsace, Brittany, Avrillé, and Lyons.

Why belong to the Third Order?  It provides a rule of life to better sanctify yourself while living in the world; it allows you to benefit from the spiritual support of a religious order and the fraternal Charity of other tertiaries.

September 20thFather Angelico begins a new year of his bi-monthly adult catechism classes on Bible History.  The study of the Old Testament using commentaries of the Fathers of the Church is an excellent way to enrich our spiritual life, according to St. Paul: “…all these things happened to them in figure: and they are written for our correction” (I Cor. 10:11).

October 2nd:  Fathers Marie-Laurent and Reginald resume their apostolate among the students of the military academy at La Flèche: confessions, Mass, conference.  This year they will be studying the fundamental book “Liberalism is a Sin”, by Don Sarda y Salvani.

October 8th:  Meeting of the “Saint Raphael Circle” for medical students, nurses and physical therapists, with Fathers Marie-Dominique and Hyacinthe-Marie.  Today the topic is “abortion and its consequences”.

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Vestition of Brother Michel-Marie

October 22ndFeast of the Dedication (Consecration of our Church). “In the world, you were known as Maximilien;  in the Order, you will be called Brother Michel-Marie, under the protection of the leader of the Heavenly Militia.”  A new brother is born into our community.  “The Popes have asked us to be ‘fighters for the Faith’”, comments Father Prior.  “Fight using the ‘arms of light’: zeal in spreading the Gospel, “the shield of Faith, wherewith you may be able to extinguish all the fiery darts of the most wicked one… the sword of the Word of God” (Eph. 6:16).

December 2nd-5thFather Angelico is in Ireland for Masses and preaching in Longford and Dublin.

December 8thFeast of the Immaculate Conception.  After a Solemn High Mass in the majestic setting of “Saint John’s Hospice” (13th cen.), the clergy and faithful go into the streets of Angers for a candle-light procession in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary. image

“We have a very certain hope and complete confidence that the most Blessed Virgin will ensure by her most powerful patronage that all difficulties be removed and all errors dissipated, so that our Holy Mother the Catholic Church may flourish daily more and more throughout all the nations and countries, and may reign “from sea to sea and from the river to the ends of the earth…” [Pope Pius IX, Ineffabilis Deus]  This is our hope as well, as we approach the 100th anniversary of the apparitions of Our Lady of Fatima.

December 18th:   Christmas Pageant performed by the students of Saint Philomena Elementary School.

 

News from our worksites

The furnishing of the Chapter room in the eastern wing of the Friary is under way. Soon, the oak beams will be installed in the ceiling, and the wooden gothic altar (which has been patiently waiting for several years) will be mounted.

The projects for the Friary workshops and cafeteria for the Boys’ school are presently being studied by the architect, in view of obtaining the necessary construction permits. This work will enable us to put the guest house back to its proper use, as it is currently occupied in large part by the school (for its kitchen, bathrooms, dining room…).

At the “Priory” (the manor house which is used for the Boys’ school), the excavation of the old “towers” is continuing, and we are in negotiations with the Historical Monuments Department to get the permission to transform them into study halls.

 

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The False Mercy of Pope Francis

The False Mercy of Pope Francis

by Alexandre Marie

Last April, by the bull of indiction Misericordiae Vultus, Francis announced an “extraordinary jubilee of mercy”.

This “Holy Year” opened on December 8th 2015 to coincide with the fiftieth anniversary of the closing of the second Vatican council.  This year of mercy, Francis explained, is meant to celebrate the triumph of Vatican II, the beginning of a new era in the history of the Church:

“The Church feels the need to keep this event alive.  It is then that a new stage in her history began.  The Council Fathers had strongly perceived, like a breath of the Holy Spirit, that it was necessary to talk about God to the men of their times in a more understandable way.  The walls which had enclosed the Church for too long like in a citadel having been flattened, the time had come to announce the Gospel in a renewed fashion.”

The “ walls” which used to protect the faith having been “flattened” by this “pastoral “ Council, Francis is trying to flatten those which still protect morality.  This was the work of the Bishops’ synod last October, very obviously also convened with a “pastoral“ goal to extend the reign of a false “mercy” destructive of the truth.

Let us recall just four facts which serve to illustrate the very particular fashion in which Francis understands “mercy”:

1) the notorious comment “Who am I to judge“ gay people?

2) the “ private” phone call to a woman “ married” to a divorced man, whom he advised to go to receive the sacraments in another parish

3) the call to the Spanish transsexual “woman” who told him of the “discrimination” “she“ was subjected to in her parish, and whom Francis invited to come to see him in a private audience in the company of her “fiancée” – at the expense of the Vatican if you please!

4) the washing of the feet of another transsexual “ woman” last Maundy Thursday – to whom to cap it all off Holy Communion was given.

In this perspective, Francis invites us to experience the opening up to “the existential peripheries” and to dare “novelty”:

“During this Holy Year, we will be able to have the experience of opening our hearts to those who live in the most different existential peripheries, which the modern world has often created in a dramatic fashion. […] Don’t let us fall into indifference which humiliates, into the habits which numb the soul and prevent us from discovering novelty, through destructive cynicism.”

The Church dreamed of by Francis must conform herself to the world, must allow herself to be molded by the “values” and “aspirations” of the world instead of trying to convert the world to Our Lord.

After having destroyed “the walls of the citadel”, the Church must come out of herself and breathe in the “ smell of humanity”, even at the risk of “getting hurt”.   At least the Church will be cured of her propensity for “self-reference”, freed from the “certainties” in which she entrenches herself and from the pretention of possessing “unique and absolute” truths.  The Church will no longer “proselytize”, she will not interfere in the spiritual life of people but will really be “at the service of people”.

How could faithful Catholics participate in such a “Holy Year” which is nothing but a charade destined to accelerate the process of the dissolution of Catholicism and to destroy the little that remains?  This “Holy Year“ has nothing holy about it, nor anything even remotely praiseworthy.   It is certainly not the work of the Holy Ghost.  [Editor:  for further information, please see our December 13, 2015 article entitled Should we participate in the ‘Year of Mercy’?  ]

(From Le Sel de la terre 94)

Friends and Benefactors Letter number 21, January 2016 – The Importance of Principles, Part II

Letter from the Dominicans of Avrillé

No. 21, January 2016

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Group photo with H. E. Bishop Faure and our three newly tonsured Brothers (see chronicle).

 

 

The Importance of Principles (Part II)

Maintaining Principles in the Modern World

Dear Friends and Benefactors,

Escaping the seduction of false principles is especially difficult nowadays because these false principles are being taught to the youth beginning at elementary school (thanks to the pseudo-educational system), continually hammered out by the media, and largely accepted by the Conciliar Church:

“The battle is mainly a battle of doctrines. Your resistance, dear brothers, consists therefore in being firm in your minds against the seduction of false and misleading principles. […]  When I ask the wise [men] of this era to identify the worst hardship of modern society, they reply unanimously that mankind is becoming weak and soft.  This reply has even become cliché.  However, we must go further, and ask the ultimate question. […]  Where does this weakness come from?  Isn’t it the natural and inevitable consequence of doctrinal weakness, weakness in belief, and, to be more exact, weakness in the Faith?  After all, courage has no reason to exist if it isn’t at the service of a conviction.  The will is a blind faculty when it is not enlightened by the intellect.  One cannot walk with assurance in the darkness of night, nor even in merely dim daylight. […]  Dear brethren, today, more than ever, the primary strength of the wicked is the weakness of the good.  The core of Satan’s reign among us is the toning down of Christianity in Christians”  (Cardinal Pie. Panégyrique de Saint Émilien, November 8, 1859.  Note that Saint Pius X cited the last sentence of the above passage, in his sermon on December 13, 1908, when he beatified Saint Joan of Arc).

The Importance of Education, Especially in the Family

It is especially in the home that moral principles are acquired.  These principles are indelible when they are learned right from childhood – which is the reason why the Revolution constantly wages war against the family, in order to remove any obstacle to the spreading of its errors:

“Nowadays [in 1910!] we have become helpless witnesses to such acts which – if we were living in the ancient times of paganism – even the barbarians and savages would have violently opposed.  Everywhere in France, schools in which the young are taught to know, love, and adore God, are being closed by a government declaring openly that its goal is to establish a nation of atheists.  We are helpless to remedy the situation because we no longer have firm principles solidly established in our souls.  Instead, we have but vague and unstable ideas, incapable of giving us the strength and energy we need.  Why are our ideas unstable?  It is because the higher, fundamental principles have not at all been inculcated in the souls of children by parents, who, having been formed by these principles, have not transmitted them.  In a word, our families no longer have the sense of tradition.”   (Msgr. Henri Delassus. L’Esprit familial dans la maison, dans la Cité et dans l’État. Lille, France. Éditions Deslcée de Brouwer, 1910. pp. 147-148).

The Force of Principles

There is a force attached to the confession of the truth.  If we know good principles well, and if we count on the grace of Our Lord to make these principles known, there will always be men of good will to listen and understand:

“Today more than ever – and let it be understood rightly – society needs strong and consistent doctrines.  Even though ideas are falling apart everywhere, asserting the truth can still be done in society, provided that this assertion of truth be firm, substantial, and without compromise.  The exchanges between men are becoming more and more sterile; each one seems to hold on to a part of truth, without grasping the whole.  As in the early days of Christianity, it is necessary now that Christians attract the attention of all, by the unity of their principles and judgments.  They have nothing to borrow from this chaos of negations and endless experimentation that testify so eloquently to the powerlessness of modern society.  This society is only living off the rare remnants of the former Catholic civilization that the Revolution has not yet taken away and which God’s Mercy has preserved from destruction.  It is up to you, convinced Catholics, to show yourself as you are.  The world may fear you at first, but be convinced that it will come back to you.  However, if you try to flatter these men by using their language, you will amuse them only for a time.  In the next moment they will forget you because you have not made a serious impression on their minds.  They will see in you the image of themselves; and since they have no trust in themselves, they won’t have much more confidence in you.  There is a grace attached to the full and entire confession of the Faith.  This grace, according to Saint Paul, is the salvation of those who accomplish this confession; and experience shows that such a confession is also the salvation of those who witness it.  Be Catholic and nothing other than Catholic.”   (Dom Prosper Guéranger, O. S. B. Le Sens Chrétien de l’Histoire. The Christian Sense of History. Cited in Le Sel de la Terre: issue 22 – Fall 1997, p.196).

Community Chronicle

September 5th – 6th:  Fathers Innocent-Marie, Louis-Marie, Reginald and Terence, accompanied by a group of the high school boys, attend the yearly book fair at Chiré-en-Montreuil (the Publishing house which handles our Éditions du Sel).

September 7thStart of the school year for Saint Philomena Elementary School, and Saint Thomas Aquinas High School.  Among the extracurricular activities for the high school boys:  weekly study groups to give them a formation for the doctrinal, political and economic combats of tomorrow.  The number of volunteers having grown from last year, there are now three different groups, under the direction of Fathers Innocent-Marie, Reginald and Terence.

September 14th:  Start of the school year for our three clerical brothers.  On the same day, according to the Constitutions of our Order, the Regent of Studies (Fr. Emmanuel-Marie) and the Master of Novices (Fr. Marie-Dominique), renew their Tridentine Profession of Faith, the anti-modernist oath, and the oath to always hold firmly to the doctrine of Saint Thomas Aquinas.

September 26th:  “Our Lady of Fatima Youth Club” has its first meeting of the year, with Fathers Angelico and Hyacinthe-Marie.

October 3rd: Father Prior and Father Angelico represent the community at the official blessing by Bishop Faure of Saint Louis-Marie Grignon de Montfort Seminary in nearby Avrillé.

October 16thEntry of our three new postulants:  Filip (Poland), Tiago (Brazil), and Maximilien (France).

mens' group photo-1

October 24th to 11th November:  Fathers Marie-Dominique and Angelico fly to the U.S. to preach two retreats with Father Zendejas on the 15 Mysteries of the Rosary.  In all, about 35 men and woman from all over the U.S. followed the retreats, and will now hopefully know how to get more out of their daily Rosary.  These retreats were also the occasion for five postulants to be received as novices in the Third Order.  For the Feast of Christ the King, the Fathers replaced Fr. Zendejas at his chapels in Connecticut and Pennsylvania.  Before returning to France, the Fathers made a small detour to Minnesota for Sunday Masses, and a few conferences.  A large number of faithful came out, despite the distance.  In each of the places visited, the zeal and fervor of the faithful was remarkable.

November 21st: Meeting for the preparation of next summer’s “John Vaquié Days” (yearly doctrinal session on the tactics of the enemies of the Church).  Three graduates from Saint Thomas Aquinas Boys’ school begin to take an active role in organizing this event, which gives us hope for the future!

December 1st:  As on every first and third Tuesday of the month, Fr. Angelico meets with a group of faithful in the Friary Library for the adult catechism class.  This year’s theme: Old Testament History.

December 8th:   Second annual Mass and candle-light Procession in the city of Angers, in honor of the Immaculate Conception of Our Lady.

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On the same day, Pope Francis inaugurated the “Year of Mercy” with a light show at the Vatican.  The show, jointly sponsored by the World Bank, had a “New Age” environmental theme, in conjunction with the Pope’s recent Encyclical on ecology.  We cannot participate in this “Jubilee”, whose sole purpose is to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Vatican II and the new humanistic religion it has ushered in.  For a more detailed refutation of those who advocate participating in the “Year of Mercy”, please go to <http://www.dominicansavrille.us/should-we-participate-in-the-jubilee-of-mercy/>

December 22nd:  Feast of the Patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary over the Order of Preachers.  Bishop Faure confers the ecclesiastical tonsure to our three clerical Brothers.

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Brothers Alain, Louis-Bertrand and Agostinho offer their candles to the Bishop as part of the ceremony.

December 25th: After the solemn ceremonies of the Dominican Christmas Liturgy*, the afternoon is reserved for the traditional Christmas recreation.  As each year, Christmas carols were sung in French, English, Portuguese, Polish and Flemish (the five most common mother tongues among the members of our very international community), but this year there was something new:  it’s the first year we were privileged with the presence of a Bishop (H.E. Faure)!

*The Dominican liturgy has conserved a few practices that have been abandoned in the Roman rite, for example, the beautiful sequence Laetabundus that is sung just before the Gospel.

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Should we participate in the Jubilee of Mercy?

Should we participate in the Jubilee of Mercy ?

 

A.   It would appear that we should participate in the extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy:

1.  When the gates of mercy are made wide open, we must take advantage to receive it in abundance.   A Holy Year is a great grace for all the members of the Church.

2.  The Council of Trent “teaches and demands that the use of indulgences, which are greatly beneficial to Christian people and are approved by the authority of this saintly council, be maintained” (DS 1835); the code of Canon Law states: “All will give great importance to the said indulgences” (can 911).  It would be paradoxical to decide, just because we do not want to have anything to do with the failed council that was Vatican II, to dismiss a truth that was proclaimed by the Council of Trent, and encouraged by all that is Church tradition.

3.  According to St. Alphonse de Liguori: “To become a saint, it suffices to gain as many indulgences as possible”.

4.  Nobody risks his salvation by participating in the Jubilee of Mercy, unless one questions the power of the keys which are legitimately held by Francis.

5.  “Even though the remission of sins were to be done in a questionable way, the interested party would nonetheless gain the full indulgence” (Saint Thomas Aquinas, Suppl. Q.25 to 2, ad 1).

6.  For a circumstance to impact the Jubilee and denature it, it would have to become either the object of, or the specific goal of the Jubilee.  However, the conditions required to obtain the said indulgence are the traditional ones: visit to a Jubilee church, confession, communion, recitation of the Credo, and prayers for the intentions of the Sovereign Pontiff (such as the Our Father, or the prayer of the Jubilee).

7.   The joy of the Jubilee is not that one of rejoicing in the Vatican II council, but rather in the grace bestowed by the head of the Church who draws it from the treasure of the infinite merits of Christ and of all the saints.  The grace bestowed so abundantly will always be a reason to rejoice for those who are well disposed to receive it.

8.   Archbishop Lefebvre and the Ecône Seminary went to the great pilgrimage organized by Rome during the Holy Year of 1975.  So did the Society of Saint Pius X in 2000.  Yet in 1975 the Vatican had noted that the holy year “coincided with the tenth anniversary of the closing of the second ecumenical Council of the Vatican”, and the decree of the holy year 2000 noted that on the occasion of the entry to the new millennium, “one should return with a renewed fidelity to the teachings the Vatican II council”.

B. Counter arguments

This Jubilee is organized by the conciliar Church; now Archbishop Lefebvre wrote in his spiritual “testament” (Spiritual Itinerary with Saint Thomas Aquinas in his Summa Theologica, 1990):

It is the strict duty of any priest wanting to remain catholic to separate himself from this conciliar Church, until the time it finds again the tradition of the Magisterium of the Church and of the Catholic Faith (…).”

C. Answer:

The morality of a human act is measured not only by its end, but also by the circumstances surrounding it (Summa Theologica-II q.18 a.3).  For example, carrying a pickax while going to one’s own field does not have the same moral sense as carrying the same pickax to a demonstration in front of Town Hall.

The Jubilee of the Year of Mercy is tainted by the following circumstances:

  • the date of the Jubilee has been chosen to celebrate the 50 years of the Council and
  • the “mercy” that Pope Francis advocates is a lax mercy which leads to sin.

Participation in the Jubilee cannot do away with these circumstances and therefore this participation is immoral.

Solutions to the above objections:  [Editor:  “Ad 1”, “Ad 2” are Latin shorthand for   “Response to point 1 above”, “Response to point 2 above”, etc.]

Ad 1.   Saint Hermenegilde refused to receive communion from the hands of an Arian bishop on Easter day, and for this reason he was put to death.  And yet there is nothing more sanctifying than Holy Communion, and Easter communion is obligatory under pain of mortal sin.  But in this case the circumstances made the act sinful: to receive the host from the hands of a heretic priest was a “communio in sacris” with a heretic.

Ad 2.   The objector is wrong in qualifying Vatican II as a “failed council”.  It is, on the contrary, a great success for the modernists who were able on this occasion to found their “Conciliar Church”.  To participate in this Jubilee would be to compromise with this pseudo-church as per the circumstances afore mentioned.  As for the indulgences, one can gain them in other ways than participating in the Jubilee: there are several ways to gain a plenary indulgence every day, for example by a half-hour of reading Holy Scripture or adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, the recitation of the Rosary, the stations of the cross, etc.

Ad 3.  The objector does not give a reference from among the works of the Saint, but from a secondary source, which itself does not give any reference.  The oldest trace that we have found of this citation is in a book written to criticize indulgences1.  We would therefore allow ourselves to ask for a precise source to verify the authenticity of this phrase as well as its context.  Whatever the case may be, to become a saint, faith is needed to a heroic degree, and therefore avoidance of all equivocations in matters of Faith.

Ad 4.  We do not question the power of the pope, but we note that he uses it badly.  It is for this same reason that we refuse the new Mass, the new code of canon law, etc.

Ad 5.  The objector omitted, without due notice, part of the quote from Saint Thomas:  “If however, the remittance of punishment is done in an unreasonable way, so that for a pittance men would be turned away from works of penance, he [the one that confers the indulgence] sins in acting in such a way; the person in question does however gain the indulgence in its entirety”.    From this, one perceives that the unreasonable aspect considered by Saint Thomas is a simple disproportion between the penance required, and the indulgence accorded.  Here the gain of the indulgence is tied to the joy of Vatican II and to a false conception of the “mercy” of pope Francis, therefore being not only unreasonable but also immoral.

Ad 6.  The objector plays on the word “denatures”.  It is true that the Jubilee remains a Jubilee, the circumstances that make it bad do not change its nature of Jubilee.  But those circumstances do enter into the object that is being morally considered for they affect its morality.  The communion offered to St. Hermenegilde remained an Easter communion, but the circumstances made it sinful.

Ad 7.  Even if he who participates in the Jubilee does not have the (subjective) intention to rejoice in Vatican II, he participates in a Jubilee that has been objectively designed to rejoice in this Council.  One must therefore abstain from participation, unless one wants to be subjectivist.

Ad 8.  The Jubilees of 1975 and 2000 were ordinary Jubilees, as those regularly held every 25 years to celebrate the anniversaries of the Incarnation.  They were not therefore tied per se to the anniversary of the Council, or to a false conception of mercy.  The allusions to the Council mentioned by the objector remained secondary and did not affect the morality of the act of participation for he who would simply celebrate the anniversary of the Incarnation.

In 1975 the participation of Archbishop Lefebvre in the pilgrimage organized by the “Credo” association took place at a time when he was manifesting his opposition to conciliar Rome2.  There was therefore no ambiguity in this act.

We can ask ourselves if it was prudent to redo a pilgrimage to Rome in 2000.   For it is on this occasion that some contacts were taken up again with the purpose of an agreement with modernistic Rome, which ended with the fall of Campos the following year.  The SSPX tried to pull back, but the talks for an agreement continued and in 2012 the accord almost happened.  The communiqués that followed the Roman meeting of September 23, 2014, the one of Menzingen (“cordial meeting”), and that of the Vatican (“proceed by successive stages” … “towards resolving the difficulties” … “in the perspective of a full reconciliation”) were the point of departure towards a certain number of steps or stages and the participation in this Jubilee would be very clearly part of this process.


On the Deposition of the Pope (Part 2 of 2)

ON THE DEPOSITION OF THE POPE  – continued  (Part 2 of 2)

Text of John of St. Thomas O.P.

Translated from the Latin and annotated by Fr. Pierre-Marie O.P. (Avrillé. France)

and published in Le Sel de la Terre [No. 90, Fall 2014]

Translated from French to English by Fr. Juan Carlos Ortiz


Response to the objections

It is easy to answer the objections of Bellarmine and Suárez against this view.

Objection 1. “A heretic is not a member, so cannot be head of the Church”

Bellarmine objected that the Apostle [St Paul] says that we must avoid the heretic after two admonitions, that is to say, after he clearly appears pertinacious, before any excommunication and sentence of a judge, as St. Jerome says in his commentary, for heretics separate themselves by the heresy itself (per se) from the Body of Christ.

And here is his reasoning:

  • A non-Christian cannot be Pope, for he who is not a member [of the Church] cannot be the head; now, a heretic is not a Christian, as commonly say the Fathers; thus, a manifest heretic cannot be Pope.
  • One cannot object that a character remains in him , because if he remained Pope because of a character, since it is indelible, it could never be deposed.  This is why the Fathers commonly teach that a heretic, because of heresy and regardless of excommunication, is deprived of any jurisdiction and power, as say St. Cyprian, St. Ambrose and St. Jerome.

Answer:  

I answer [to Bellarmine] that the heretic should be avoided after two admonitions legally made and with the Church’s authority, and not according to private judgment; indeed, a great confusion in the Church would follow , if it was allowed that the admonition is made by a private man, and that the manifestation of this heresy having been made without being declared by the Church and proclaimed to all, in order that they avoid the Pontiff, that all should be required to avoid; for a heresy of the Pope cannot be public for all the faithful on the report of a few, and this report, not being legal, does not require that all believe it and avoid the Pontiff; and therefore as the Church proclaims him legally elected by legally designating him for all, it is necessary that she deposes him by declaring and proclaiming him as a heretic to be avoided.

Therefore, we see that this has been practiced by the Church, when in the case of the deposition of the Pope, the cause itself was first addressed by the General Council before the Pope was declared “No Pope”, as we said above.  Therefore it is not because the Pope is a heretic, even publicly, that he will ipso facto cease to be Pope, before the declaration of the Church, and before she proclaims him as “to be avoided” by the faithful.

And when St. Jerome says that a heretic separates itself from the body of Christ, he does not exclude a judgment of the Church, especially in such a serious matter as the deposition of the Pope, but it indicates only the quality of the crime, which excludes per se from the Church, without any further sentence, at least from the moment he is declared [heretic] by the Church;  indeed, even if the crime of heresy separates itself (ex se) of the Church, however, in relation to us that separation is not understood as have been made (not intelligitur facto) without this statement.

It is the same thing from the reason added by Bellarmine.  A non-Christian who is such in itself AND in relation to us (quoad se et quoad nos) cannot be Pope;  however, if he is not in itself a Christian, because he has lost the faith, but if in relation to us he is not legally declared being infidel or heretic, as obvious as it may appear in a private judgment, he is still in relation to us (quoad nos) a member of the Church and therefore the head.   Accordingly, a judgment of the Church is required through which he is declared (proponatur) as being a non-Christian and to be avoided, and then he ceases in relation to us to be the Pope, consequently, previously he did not cease to be himself (etiam in se) [Pope], because all what he did was valid in itself.1


Objection 2. “The Church has no power over the conjunction of the Pontificate with the person.”

The points of this objection are these:

  • [a] The Church cannot have power over the conjunction of the pontificate with the person, unless you have power over the Papacy itself; indeed, when the Pope deposes a bishop he does nothing else than to destroy his conjunction with the episcopate, though he does not destroy the episcopate itself;  therefore, if the Church has power over the conjunction of the Pontificate with the person, consequently she has power over the Papacy and the person of the Pope.
  • [b] A confirmation of this argument is that the Pope is deposed against his will, therefore, he is punished by this deposition; but it belongs to the superior and to the judge to punish. Therefore, the Church who deposes or punishes through the punishment of deposition, has superiority over the Pope.
  • [c] Finally, one who has power over the united parties or their conjunction simply has power over the whole. Therefore, if the Church has power over the conjunction of the Pontificate with the person, she has simpliciter power over the Pope, which Cajetan denies.

Answer:

[a] We answer that it is not in the same manner that the Pontiff has power over the bishop when he deposes him, and the Church over the Pontiff: indeed, the Pontiff punishes the bishop as someone who is subjected to him, [the latter] being invested with a subordinated and dependent power, which [the former] can limit and restrict; and, although it does not remove the episcopate from the person [punished], nor destroys it, nevertheless he does it by the superiority he has over the person, including in this power which is subordinated to him.  That is why he really removes the power to [from] that person, and does not just remove that person from power.  On the contrary, the Church removes the Pontificate not by superiority over him, but by a power which is only ministerial and dispositive, in so far as she can induce a disposition incompatible with the Pontificate, as it was said.

[b] In response to the confirmation of the reasoning, the Pope is deposed against his will, in a ministerial and dispositive manner by the Church, [but] authoritatively by Christ the Lord, so that through him, and not by Church, he is properly said punished.

[c]  Regarding the latter reason, he who has power over the conjunction of the parties has power over the whole simpliciter, unless his power over the conjunction is ministerial and dispositive; we must distinguish between

  • physical realities when the dispositions have a natural connection to the very being of the whole, so that when the agent realizes the combination producing the dispositions binding the parties, it produces the whole simpliciter;
  • and moral realities, in which the disposition made by the agent has only a moral connection with the form, in relation to a free institution, so that he who does the disposition is not supposed to do the whole simpliciter;  for example, when the Pontiff grants to anyone the power to designate a place to be favored to gain indulgences, or remove indulgences by saying that the place is not privileged anymore, that designation or declaration removes or grants indulgences, not with authority and principaliter, but only ministerially.”

[End of John of St. Thomas’s text]



Some thoughts as a conclusion

The main argument of sedevacantists concluding on the vacancy of the Apostolic See is “the theological argument of the heresy of the Pope,” namely of a Pope who becomes a heretic loses the Pontificate.

In the “Small Catechism on Sedevacantism” (Le Sel de la terre 79, p. 40), Dominicus explained that this argument cannot conclude, on the one side because it would be necessary to prove the formal and manifest heresy of the Pope, on the other, because a judgment of the Church stating that heresy would be necessary.

The text of John of St. Thomas develops this second point: the need for a judgment of the Church for the deposition of a heretical pope.

But at the same time, it shows the difficulty of such a judgment in the present circumstances of the Church.  Indeed, it is easy to see that the vast majority of bishops share the Pope’s ideas about false ecumenism, false religious freedom, etc.  It is therefore impossible to imagine in the current circumstances, a judgment of a General Council which would declare the heresy of Pope Francis.

Humanly speaking we see the situation is hopeless.  We must wait that the Providence, in one way or another, shows the way to overcome this impasse.  Meanwhile, it is prudent to maintain the position of Archbishop Lefebvre and pray for the Pope, while resisting his “heresies”.


Annexes

Here we give some other texts from Thomist authors who share the view of Cajetan and John of St. ThomasBáñez, the Carmelites of Salamanca, Billuart and Fr. Garrigou-Lagrange.

Báñez

Domingo (Dominicus) Báñez or Bannez O.P. (1528-1604) is one of the greatest theologians of the 16th century, the golden age of Theology in Spain (with Francisco de Vitoria, Domingo de Soto, Melchior Cano, Bartholomew Medina and Pedro de Sotomayor).

Báñez is regarded, rightly, as one of the most profound and safest commentators of the doctrine of St. Thomas. His style is clear, sober and nervous, without darkness or false elegance.  His erudition is abundant, without ostentation or clutter.  His logic power and intelligence of metaphysics are particularly noteworthy, and on this ground exceeds his teachers and his most famous colleagues. (P. MANDONNET, D.T.C., “Bañez”)

In his commentary on the Summa Theologica, he defends the view that:

If the Supreme Pontiff falls into heresy, he does not lose immediately the Papal dignity, before he is deposed by the Church. (In II-II q. 1 a. 10)

He explained that a number of theologians believe that the Pope, once he becomes a heretic, immediately loses his power.  But the opinion he defends is that of Cajetan, of which he summarizes the arguments:

  1. The other bishops, if they become heretics, retain their episcopal dignity until they are deposed by the Pope. […]
  2. If the Pontiff, once fallen into heresy, is ready to amend, he should not be deposed, as even those who hold the opposite view admit, so he does not cease to be Pope. […]

He then examines an objection against his thesis, and this is the most interesting passage for our study:

One objects that the Sovereign Pontiff ceases to be the head of the Church when he falls into heresy and therefore he ceases to be Pope.  Indeed, as soon as he falls into heresy he ceases to be a member of the Church, so to be its head.

One easily answers this objection with the doctrine we have given while explaining the definition of the Church.  The Pontiff is not said to be the head of the Church because of his holiness or his faith, because it is not thus that he influences the other members, but [rather] is said to be the head of the Church because of his ministerial office, which aims to govern the Church by defining the truth, by establishing laws, by administering the sacraments, all of which are carried out according externally according to a visible ecclesiastical hierarchy, and almost palpable.  Besides, the fact that the Pontiff, because of his heresy, ceases to be a member of Christ, for he ceases to receive from Him the spiritual influence for his own sanctification, does not prevent him of being called the chief member of the Church, namely its head, in relation to the ecclesiastical government.  Similarly, the head of a State is said to be the head of the Republic.  As the notion of membership is employed metaphorically, we have said above that there may be different points of view of the metaphor: according to one point of view [Editor’s note: from the spiritual influence received from Christ] the Pontiff is not a member of Christ or the Church, and from another [Editor’s note: the power of government] he is a member. (Venice edition of 1587, columns 194-196)

The Carmelites of Salamanca

The composition of the Cursus theologicus salmanticensis extends over seventy years, during the last three quarters of the 17th century. It is a renowned theological course composed by six Discalced Carmelite theologians of Saint-Elias Convent of Salamanca.  The convent was founded in 1581, during the life and under the counsel of St. Teresa of Avila.

They ask if the Pope, as an individual doctor, can become a heretic.  They cite some authors who think it is not possible (Pighi, Bellarmine, Suárez), and they continue:

The contrary view (which states that the Pontiff as a private doctor can err, not only in secondary objects, but even on matters of faith, and not just with a non-culpable error coming from ignorance or negligence, but also with pertinacity, so that he is a heretic) is much more probable (longe probabilior) and more common among theologians.

Among the reasons they give in favor of their opinion, there is this one:

Because the Church may depose the Pontiff of his dignity, as Cajetan shows in his Treatise on the Authority of the Pope (from chapter 20 to chapter 26) and Melchior Cano in his book De Locis theologicis (book 6, chapter 8).  But this power to depose is not vain in the Church, and it cannot be reduced to the act except if the Pontiff errs in the faith: so this error may be in the Pope as a private person. (De Fide, disp. 4 dubium 1, n. 7)

Billuart

Charles-René Billuart O.P. (1685-1757) is a French Thomist theologian.  He composed a Theology course which enjoys a high reputation.

In the Treatise on the Incarnation (De Incarnatione, diss. IX, a. II, § 2, obj. 2) Billuart defends the thesis that Christ is not the head of heretics, even occult.

It is objected that several doctors (Cajetan, Soto Cano, Suárez, etc.) say that the Pope fallen into occult heresy remains the head of the Church. So he must be a member.

Billuart denies the conclusion:

There is a difference between being constituted a head by the fact that one is influencing on the members, and being made a member by the fact that one is receiving an influx in itself;  this is why, while the pontiff [who] fell into occult heresy keeps the jurisdiction by which he influences the Church by governing her, thereby he remains the head;  but as he no longer receives the vital influx of Christ‘s faith or charity, who is the invisible and first head, he cannot be said to be a member of Christ or of the Church.

Instance: it is repugnant to be the head of a body without being a member, since the head is the primary member.

Answer:  I distinguish the first sentence: it is repugnant to a natural head, I agree; to a moral head, I deny it.  For example, Christ is the moral head of the Church, but he is not a member.  The reason for the difference is that the natural head cannot have an influence on other members without receiving the vital influx of the soul.  But the moral head, as the Pontiff is, can exercise the jurisdiction and the government over the Church and its members, although he is not informed by the soul of the Church, which are faith and charity, and that he does not receive any vital influx.   

In a word, the Pope is made a member of the Church through the personal faith which he can lose, and the head of the Church by the jurisdiction and the power which can be reconciled with an internal heresy. (Cursus theologiœ, Pars III, Venice, 1787, p. 66)

In the Treatise on Faith (De Fide diss IV to III, § 3, obj 2) Billuart defends the following thesis:   Heretics, even manifest (unless being denounced by name, or by leaving the Church themselves) keep the jurisdiction and absolve validly.

He considers the question of the case of a Pope, which is a special case, who receives his jurisdiction not from the Church, but directly from Christ:

It is nowhere stated that Christ continues to give jurisdiction to a manifestly heretical Pontiff, for this can be known by the Church and she can get another pastor.  However the common sentence [editor:  opinion] holds that Christ, by a special provision (ex speciali dispensatione), for the common good and peace of the Church, continues [to give] jurisdiction to a Pontiff even who is a manifest heretic, until he is declared manifestly heretical by the Church. (Cursus theologiœ, Pars II-II, Brescia, 1838, p. 33-34)

In the Treaty on the Rules of Faith (De regulis fidei, diss IV, VIII a, § 2, obj 2 and 6) Billuart defends the following thesis:  The sovereign Pontiff is superior to any council by authority and jurisdiction.

It is objected that the Pontiff is subject to the judgment of the Church in the case of heresy.  Why then he would not be subject also in other cases?

He replies:

This is because in the case of heresy, and not in other cases, he loses the pontificate by the fact itself of his heresy: how could remain head of the Church he who is no longer a member?  This is why he is subject to the judgment of the Church, not in order to be removed, since he is already deposed himself by heresy and he rejected the Pontificate (pontificatum abjecerit), but in order to be declared a heretic, and thus that he will be known to the Church that he is not anymore Pontiff: before this statement [of the Church] it is not permitted to refuse him obedience, because he keeps jurisdiction until then, not by right, as if he were still Pontiff, but in fact, by the will of God and accordingly disposing it for the common good of the Church. (Cursus theologiœ, Pars II-II, Brescia, 1838, p. 123)

Another objector remarked that the Church would be deprived of a remedy if she could not subject the Pope to the Council in the case that he would be harmful and would seek to subvert her.

Billuart replied that:

If the pope sought to harm her in the faith, he would be manifestly heretical, and he would thereby lose the Pontificate: however it should be necessary a declaration of the Church in order to deny him obedience, as we have said above. (Cursus theologiœ, Pars II-II, Brescia, 1838, p. 125)

If the Pope would harm the Church otherwise than in the faith, some say that one could resist him by the force of arms, however without losing his superiority.  St. Thomas Aquinas said it would be necessary to appeal to God in order to correct him or taking him away from this world (4 Sent. D. 19, q. 2, a. 2 q.1a 3, ad 2).

Billuart prefers to think that:

Whereas God governs and sustains his Church with a special Providence, he will not permit, as he has not permitted it so far, that this situation will happen, and if he permits it, he will not fail to give the means and the help appropriate. (Cursus theologiœ, Pars II-II, Brescia, 1838, p. 125)

St. Alphonsus Liguori

St. Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787), Doctor of the Church, devoted several writings in defense of Papal power against the conciliarist heresy (which gave to the councils a higher authority over the Pope).  Collected in one volume by a Redemptorist religious on the eve of Vatican Council I, (Du Pape et du concile; Tournai, Casterman, 1869) these writings have helped to prepare the definition of the dogma of Papal infallibility.  St. Alphonsus does not really treat the issue of a heretical Pope, and he excludes it so that it does not disturb his subject.  But, without entering into the details, he said repeatedly that the heretical Pope loses his authority only when his heresy has been confirmed by a council.   He clearly shares the view of Cajetan and John of St. Thomas.

In an essay on the authority of the Pope, added by St. Alphonsus at the end of the edition of his Moral Theology in 1748,2 the Holy Doctor vigorously defends the superiority of the Pope over the council, but beforehand he declares:

  1. It should first be noted that the superiority of the Pope over the council does not extend to the dubious Pope in the time of a schism when there is a serious doubt about the legitimacy of his election; because then everyone must submit to the council, as defined by the Council of Constance.  Then indeed the General Council draws its supreme power directly from Christ, as in times of vacancy of the Apostolic See, as it was well said by St. Antoninus (Summa, p. 3 did. 23, c. 2 § 6).
  2. The same must be said of a pope who would be manifestly and exteriorly heretical (and not only secretly and mentally).  However, others argue more accurately that, in this case, the Pope cannot be deprived of his authority by the council as if it were above him, but that he is deposed immediately by Jesus Christ, when the condition of this deposition [= the declaration of the council] is carried out as required.3

After presenting the views of Azorius (viz. that the council is above a manifestly heretical pope), St. Alphonsus nuances it and therefore ultimately follows the position of Cajetan and John of St. Thomas, considered as “more accurate”.   St. Alphonsus did the same in his apologetical treatise Truth of Faith (1767):

“When in time of schism we are in doubt about the true Pope, the council may be convened by the cardinals and the bishops; and then each of the elected Popes is obliged to follow the decision of the council because, at that time, the Apostolic See is considered vacant.  It would be the same if the Pope would fall notoriously and perseveringly, persistently in some heresy.  However, there are those who affirm with more foundation that in the latter case, that the Pope would not be deprived of the papacy by the council as if it were superior to him, but he would be stripped directly by Jesus Christ because he would then become a subject completely disqualified and deprived of his office.” (Truth of Faith (1767), penultimate chapter “On the Superiority of the Roman pontiff over the councils”, art. I, Preliminary Notions, 2°)

St. Alphonsus defends again the same idea in 1768 in his refutation of the errors of Febronius:

If ever the Pope, as a private person, falls into heresy, then he would be immediately stripped of papal authority as he would be outside the Church and therefore he could not be the head of the Church.  So, in this case, the Church should not truly depose him, because no one has a superior power to the Pope, but to declare him deprived of the pontificate.  (We said: if the Pope fall into heresy as a private person, because the Pope as Pope, that is to say, teaching the whole Church ex cathedra cannot teach an error against Faith because Christ’s promise cannot fail). (Vindiciae pro suprema Pontificis potestate adversus justinum febronium, 1768, Chapter VIII, response to the 6th objection)

Father Garrigou-Lagrange O.P.

Father Garrigou-Lagrange examines the question of the heretical pope in his treatise De Christo Salvatore. (Marietti, Rome-Turin, 1946, p. 232)  After explaining that Christ cannot be the head of a formal heretic, he concludes:

This is why a baptized formal heretic is not a member in act of the Church, yet the Church has the right to punish him, in so far as he does not hold what he has promised, like a king has the right to punish a deserter.

Bellarmine objects that a Pope fallen into occult heresy remains a member of the Church in act, for he remains the head of the Church, as taught [also] by Cajetan, Soto, Cano, Suárez and others.4

I answer that this case is quite abnormal, so it is no wonder that it follows an abnormal consequence, namely that an occult heretical Pope would not remain a member of the Church in act (according to the doctrine we have just described), but he would keep the jurisdiction by which he influences the Church by governing her.  So he would retain the reason [= the nature] of head vis-à-vis the Church, on which he would continue to influence, but he would cease to be a member of Christ, because he would no longer receive the vital influx of the faith of Christ, the invisible and first head.  Thus, in a quite abnormal manner, in relation to the jurisdiction he would be the head of the Church, but he would not be a member.

This would be impossible if it were a physical head, but it is not contradictory for a secondary moral head.  The reason is that, while a physical head cannot exert any influence on the members without receiving the vital influx of the soul, a moral head, as is the [Roman] Pontiff can exercise jurisdiction on the Church even if it [he] receives from the soul of the Church no influence from internal faith and from charity.

In short, as Billuart says, the Pope is considered a member of the Church by his personal faith, which he may lose, and a head of the visible Church by the jurisdiction and power that may coexist with internal heresy.  The Church will always appear as a union of members placed under a visible head, namely the Roman Pontiff, although some of those who appear to be members of the Church are internal heretics.  Therefore we must conclude that occult heretics are only apparent members of the Church, which [the latter] they profess outwardly and visibly to be the true one.



On the Deposition of the Pope (Part 1 of 2)

ON THE DEPOSITION OF THE POPE

Text of John of St. Thomas O.P.

Translated from the Latin and annotated by Fr. Pierre-Marie O.P. (Avrillé. France)

and published in Le Sel de la Terre [No. 90, Fall 2014]

Translated from French to English by Fr. Juan Carlos Ortiz

Foreword

John of St. Thomas (1589-1644) is rightly regarded as one of the greatest Thomistic theologians. His contemporaries unanimously called him a second Thomas, a bright star in front of the Sun (St. Thomas Aquinas) and always he was placed, in the company of Cajetan and Báñez, alongside the Angel of the School.  His doctrine is none other than that of the Angelic Doctor, profoundly understood and faithfully expressed.”  (J.M. Ramírez, Dictionnaire de théologie catholique, “Jean de Saint-Thomas”, col. 806)

He was born in Lisbon, was educated at Coimbra University, then at Louvain University, before joining the Dominicans in Madrid at the age of 23. He was long time a professor at Alcalá (Madrid University).  The last year of his life he was the confessor of King Philip IV of Spain (1605-1665, king in 1621).  It is, moreover, much against his will and by obedience that he accepted this honor while telling his brothers in religion, “This is the end of my life, Fathers; I’m dead, pray for me.”

“His life was a living reproduction of the virtues of the Angelic Doctor, from whom he had taken the name to mark his devotion to him.  In fact, he joined to his hard intellectual work, a great love of prayer and a burning desire for religious perfection.  Students flocked to his courses, attracted by the depth and solidity of his doctrine.” (Ibid. col. 804)

We give here the first [French] translation of the main passages of his dissertation on “Can the Pope be deposed by the Church as he is elected by Her, and in what case?” (Disputatio II, articulus III, in II-II, q. 1 a. 7, p. 133-140 in the edition of Lyon, 1663) which he wrote while commenting the first question of the II-II of St. Thomas Aquinas’ Summa Theologica.

This is a matter whose importance will not escape our lectors.  However, the book of Arnaldo Xavier da Silveira, La Nouvelle Messe de Paul VI: Qu’en penser?  1 often considered the reference on the question on the “heretical pope” does not have this opinion.  John of St. Thomas is not even mentioned in the extensive bibliography of the book.  In fact, Xavier da Silveira agrees with the opinion of St. Robert Bellarmine, while Cardinal Journet affirms that the studies of Cajetan and John of St. Thomas on this point are more penetrating than those of the Jesuit doctor.

As we have remarked in the report we did in Le Sel de la Terre 52 (p. 205), Father Jean-Michel Gleize [SSPX] thinks that this “thesis [of Cajetan on the deposition of heretical pope] does not hold” since St. Robert Bellarmine’s S.J. studies (1542-1621), and declares not being satisfied with the answers John of St. Thomas gave to the Jesuit theologian. (Thomas de Vio Cajetan, The Successor of Peter, annotated translation by Father Gleize in Courrier de Rome, 2004, n. 65, p. XXII and n. 473, p. 138.)

Nevertheless, a century after John of St. Thomas, Billuart (1685- 1737) also qualified this thesis of Cajetan and John of St. Thomas as ‘more common’. (See the text given in the Appendix.)  It seems, to us, to be solidly supported.  With the text published here and the appendices that follow, the readers may judge by themselves.

The subtitles and the notes are ours.

Le Sel de la Terre [No. 90, Fall 2014]


Introduction

“I affirm that the Pope can lose the pontificate in three ways: through natural death, by voluntary renunciation, and by deposition.

About the first case, there is no difficulty.

About the second case, there is an express provision [in Canon Law2 ], where it is established that the Pontiff may resign, as it was the case with Celestine V; at the Council of Constance, the resignation was asked to the doubtful pontiffs in order to finish with the schism as did Gregory XII and John XXIII. […]

About the third case of losing the Pontificate, many difficulties arise: to make this brief, we reduce all these problems to two main headers: [1] Under what circumstances a deposition can be made?   [2] And by which power this deposition should be made?

On the first point, we will mention three main cases in which a deposition can take place.  The first is the case of heresy or infidelity.  The second case is perpetual madness.  The third case is doubt about the validity of the election.”

[COMMENT: Here we are only interested in the first case dealt with by John of St. Thomas: the deposition for cases of heresy or infidelity, as it is the case currently concerning us with Pope Francis.]

Can a deposition occur in cases of heresy or infidelity?

“Concerning the case of heresy, theologians and Canon lawyers have disputed very much.  It is not necessary to dwell at length.  However, there is an agreement among the Doctors on the fact that the Pope may be deposed in case of heresy: we will mention them in the discussion of the difficulty.

Arguments from authority

  • A specific text is found in the Decree of Gratian, Distinction 40, chapter “Si Papa”, where it is said:  “On earth, no mortal should presume to reproach (redarguere) any faults to the Pontiff, because he who has to judge (judicaturus) others, should not be judged (judicandus) by anyone, unless he is found deviating from the Faith.” (Pars I, D 40, c. 6)   This exception obviously means that in case of heresy, a judgment could be made of the pope.
  • The same thing is confirmed by the letter of Hadrian II, reported in the Eighth General Council [IV Constantinople, 869-870], in the 7th session, where it is said that the Roman Pontiff is judged by no one, but the anathema was made by the Orientals against Honorius, because he was accused of heresy, the only cause for which it is lawful for inferiors to resist their superiors. (MANSI, Sacrorum Conciliorum nova collectio amplissima, Venice, 1771, vol. 16, col. 126)
  • Also Pope St. Clement says in his first epistle that Saint Peter taught that a heretical pope must be deposed.3


Theological argument

The reason is that we must separate ourselves from heretics, according to Titus 3:10: A man that is a heretic, after the first and second admonition, avoid (devita) him.”   Now, one should not avoid one that remains in the [Sovereign] Pontificate; on the contrary, the Church should instead be united to him as her supreme head and communicate with him.  Therefore, if the pope is a heretic, either the Church should communicate with him, or he must be deposed from the Pontificate.

The first solution leads to the obvious destruction of the Church, and has inherently a risk that the whole ecclesiastical government errs, if she has to follow a heretical head.  In addition, as the heretic is an enemy of the Church, natural law provides protection against such a Pope according to the rules of self-defense, because she can defend herself against an enemy as is a heretical Pope; therefore, she can act (in justice) against him.  So, in any case, it is necessary that such a Pope must be deposed.

Response to an objection.

An objection: Christ the Lord tolerated, in the chair of Moses, infidels and heretics, like the Pharisees: The scribes and the Pharisees have sitten on the chair of Moses.  All things therefore whatsoever they shall say to you, observe and do: but according to their works do ye not; for they say, and do not. (Mt 23: 2-3).  But the Pharisees were heretics and taught false doctrines according to various superstitions and traditions, says St. Jerome in his commentary on Chapter 8 of Isaiah.  St. Epiphanius lists their errors (Panarion, 1. 1, c. 16), and Josephus (Jewish War, 1. 2, c 7 on the end) and Baronius (Annals, v. 7).   So on the Chair of Peter, too, one must tolerate a heretic and an infidel, because he can define a heresy or an error, and thus the Church will always remain free of heresy.

I answer that Christ the Lord did not order that Pharisees be tolerated in the chair of Moses, even if they are declared heretics, or that any heretic or infidel should be kept in the priesthood or in the Papacy, but he only gave this counsel in case they are tolerated there.  If they are not yet declared and deposed from their chair, the faithful should listen to them and obey them, because they keep their power and jurisdiction; however, if the Church wants to declare them heretic and no longer tolerate them, Christ the Lord does not prohibit it by the words reported above.

Two conditions.

But we need to know if the Pope can be deposed in any case of heresy and in whatever form of being a heretic; or if some additional conditions are needed without which heresy alone is not sufficient to depose the Pontiff.

I answer that the pontiff cannot be deposed and lose the pontificate except if two conditions are fulfilled together:

  1. That the heresy is not hidden, but public and legally notorious;
  2. Then that he must be incorrigible and pertinacious in his heresy.

If both conditions are fulfilled the pontiff may be deposed, but not without them; and even if he is not unfaithful interiorly, however if he behaves externally as a heretic, he can be deposed and the sentence of deposition will be valid.

Concerning the first requirement, some among Catholics are of a different opinion, saying that even for an occult  heresy [Editor:  occult = “hidden”, “not visible”], the Pontiff loses his papal jurisdiction, which is based on the true Faith and right confession of Faith; supporting this opinion we have Torquemada (1, 2, 2 p. from v. 18 and 1. 2, c. 102), Paludanus, Castro, Simancas, Driedo […]

Others think that it is necessary that the heresy must be external and proved in the external forum in order that the Pontiff can be deposed of the pontificate; thus Soto (4 Sent. D. 22, q. 2. 2); Cano (from Locis, 1. 4), who believes that the contrary opinion is not even probable; Cajetan (On the Pope’s power, De Comparatione auctoritatis papae and concilii cum apologia eiusdem tractatus; Rome, Angelicum, 1936; c. 18 and 19), Suárez, Azorius, Bellarmine (On the Roman Pontiff, c. 30).

The principle is that occult heretics, as long as they are not condemned by the Church and being separated [by her], belong to the Church and are in communion with her, as like being moved from the exterior, even if they do not receive any more interiorly the vital movement; therefore the Pontiff, if he is an occult heretic, is not separated from the Church; therefore, he can still be the head, since he is still a part and a member, even if he is not a living one.

A confirmation of it is that the priests of a lower order can exercise the power of order and jurisdiction without Faith because a heretical priest can confer the sacraments and give absolution in cases of extreme need […]

The second condition, in order to be able to depose the Pope, namely that he is guilty of incorrigible and pertinacious heresy, is evident, because if someone is ready to be corrected and is not pertinacious in heresy, is not considered to be heretical (Decree of Gratian, No. 24. 3. 29 “Dixit Apostolus.”); therefore, if the Pope is ready to be corrected, he should not be deposed as a heretic.

The Apostle [Paul] prescribes to avoid heretics only after a first and a second correction: if he comes to repentance after the correction, he should not be avoided; therefore, as the Pope must be deposed for heresy under this apostolic precept, it follows that if he can be corrected, he should not be deposed. […]”

On the Deposition of the Pope

“It remains to deal with the second problem: by what authority should the deposition of the Pope be done?    And the whole issue revolves around two points:

  1. The declarative sentence by which the Pope’s crime is declared: should it be made by the Cardinals or by the General Council?  And if it is by the General Council, by what authority should it be assembled, and on what basis could this Council judge the case?
  2. The deposition itself which must follow the declarative sentence of the crime: is it made by the power of the Church, or immediately by Christ, being supposed made the declaration?


1. Who should pronounce the declarative sentence of the crime of heresy?


The declarative sentence should not be made by the Cardinals

On the first point, we must say that the statement of the crime does not come from the Cardinals, but from the General Council.

It first appears from the practice of the Church. Indeed, in the case of Pope Marcellinus (Pope from 296 to 304) about the incense offered to idols, a Synod was convened, as stated in the Decree of Gratian. (Distinction 21, Chapter 7, “Nunc autem”)   And in the case of the Great [Western] Schism during which there were three popes, the Council of Constance was assembled to settle the schism.  Likewise in the case of Pope Symmachus (Pope from 498 to 514), a Council was convened in Rome to treat the case against him, as reported in Antoine Augustin in his Epitome juris pontificii veteris (Title 13, Chapter 14. See also Catholic Encyclopedia, Pope St. Symmachus); and the places of Canon Law quoted above, show that the Pontiffs who wanted to defend themselves against the crimes imputed to them, have done it before a Council.

Then we see that the power to treat the cause of the Pontiff, and what concerns his deposition, was not entrusted to the Cardinals.  In the case of deposition, this belongs to the Church, whose authority is represented by the General Council; indeed, to the cardinal is only entrusted the election, and nothing else, as can be seen in Canon Law [John of St. Thomas refers to what he said earlier in his works]: see Torquemada (Summa, 1. 2, c. 93), Cajetan (De Comparatione auctoritatis papae), and the Canonists (On the Decretal of Boniface VIII (in 6th), chap. “In fidei de haereticis” and the Decree of Gratian, Dist. 40).

The declarative sentence must be made by a General Council

[…] This council can be convened by the authority of the Church which is in the Bishops or the greater majority of them; the Church has, by divine law, the right to separate herself from a heretical Pope, and therefore she has all the means necessary for such a separation; now, a necessary means in itself (per se) is to be able to legally prove such a crime; but we cannot prove it see legally unless if there is a competent judgment, and in such a serious matter, we cannot have a competent judgment except by the General Council, because it is about the universal head of the Church, so much so that it depends on the judgment of the universal Church, that is to say, of the General Council.

I do not share the opinion of Father Suárez who believes that this can be treated by Provincial Councils; indeed, a Provincial Council does not represent the universal Church in a manner that this case can be treated by such authority; and even several Provincial Councils have no such representation or such authority.

If this is not about the authority under which one must judge, but about the one which has the authority to convene the [General] Council, I believe that this is not assigned to a specific person, but it can be done either by the Cardinals who could communicate the news to the bishops, either by the nearest bishops who can tell others so that all are gathered; or even at the request of princes, not as a summons having coercive force, as when the Pope convenes a Council, but as an “enuntative” convocation that denounces such a crime to the bishops and manifest it in order that they come to bring a remedy.  And the Pope cannot annul such a Council or reject it because he is itself part of it (quia ipse est pars), and that the Church has the power, by the divine right, to convene the council for this purpose, because she has the right to secede from a heretic.

2. On which authority is the Pope deposed?


The diverse opinions

On the second point, namely on which authority the declaration [of heresy] and the deposition are to be made, there is dissension among theologians, and it is not clear by whom that statement should be made, because it is an act of judgment and jurisdiction, which no one can exert on the Pope.  Cajetan, in his treatise On the Pope’s authority, refers to two extreme positions and two middle positions. (De Comparatione auctoritatis Papae and concilii; Angelicum, Rome, 1936; chapter 20)

The two extremes: one says that the Pope is removed without human judge by the mere fact of being a heretic (Bellarmine and Suárez); on the opposite, the other said that the Pope has truly a power above him by which he can be judged (this opinion is not sustained anymore; Cajetan considered it false).

The two middle positions: one says that the pope has no superior [on earth] in absolute terms, except in case of heresy; the other says that he has no superior on earth, neither absolutely, nor in the case of heresy, but only in a ministerial way: just as the Church has a ministerial power to choose the person [Pope], but not to give power, as this is done immediately by Christ, in the same manner, in the deposition, which is the destruction of the bond by which the Papacy is attached to such person in particular, the Church has the power to depose him in a ministerial manner; but it is Christ who deprives [his power] with authority.

The first opinion is that of Azorius (the church is above the Pope in case of heresy).  The second is that of Cajetan who develops it extensively.  Bellarmine quotes it and combats it (The Romano Pontifice, c. 20), especially on two points:  Cajetan said that the manifest heretic Pope is not ipso facto removed and that the Pope is actually deposed really and authoritatively by the Church.  Similarly Suárez (De fide Predisputatio, Sec. 6, num. 7) reproaches Cajetan for saying that the Church, in the case of heresy, is above the Pope as a private person, but not as a Pope.  This, in fact, Cajetan did not say: he holds that the Church is not above the Pope absolutely, even in the case of heresy, but she is above the link joining the Pontificate with such a person, and that she dissolves it, in the same manner as the Church has joined it in the election, and that this power of the Church is ministerial, because only Christ the Lord is simpliciter superior to the pope.

Bellarmine and Suárez therefore think that the Pope, by the very fact that he is a manifest heretic and declared incorrigible, is immediately deposed by Christ the Lord and not by any authority of the Church.


The opinion of Cajetan


Thus the opinion of Cajetan contains three points.

1.  The first is that the heretic pope is not deprived of the Pontificate and deposed by the mere fact of heresy, considered separately.

2.  The second is that the Church has neither power nor superiority over the Pope about his power, even in the case of heresy; never is the Church’s power above the power of the Pope, and consequently above the Pope absolutely.

3.  The third is that the Church’s power has for its object:

  • the application of the papal power to such person, in designating him by the election, and
  • the separation of the power with such a person, by declaring him heretical and to be avoided by the faithful.

Therefore, although the declaration of a crime is like an antecedent disposition preceding the deposition itself and that it relates to it only in a ministerial manner, however, it reaches the form itself of this dispositive and ministerial manner; insofar as it reaches the disposition, so it aims mediately to the form: in the same manner as in the generation and corruption of a man, the begetter neither produces nor educts the form, and the one who corrupts it does not destroy it, but the first one produces the combination of the form, and the second one the separation, immediately reaching the dispositions of the matter to the form, and through them, the form.

Cajetan’s FIRST POINT:  The heretical pope is not deprived of the Pontificate and deposed by the mere fact of heresy considered separately

The first point is obvious and is not legitimately opposed by Bellarmine.  His truth appears thus:

- First, because the Pope, no matter how real and public may be his heresy, by the moment he is eager to be corrected, he cannot be deposed, and the Church cannot depose him by divine right, for she cannot nor should avoid him since the Apostle [Paul] says, “avoid the heretic after the first and second correction; therefore, before the first and second correction he should not be avoided, and consequently he should not be deposed; therefore it is wrong to say that the pope is deposed (ipso facto) as soon as he is a public heretic: he may be a public heretic, but not yet corrected by the Church, nor declared incorrigible.

- Then, because (as Azorius rightly noted) any heretical Bishop, no matter how visible is his heresy, and although he incurs an excommunication, does not lose ipso facto the Episcopal jurisdiction and power until he is declared [such] by the Church and deposed; indeed only the excommunicated “not tolerated” [vitandus] loses jurisdiction ipso facto, namely those specifically excommunicated or those who manifestly struck a cleric (manifesti percussores clerici).  Therefore, if a bishop or some other prelate loses not ipso facto his power by the mere external heresy, why the Pope would lose it [even] before the Church’s declaration?   Especially since the Pope cannot incur excommunication: on the one hand, no excommunication at all – I suppose – is carried by divine law itself;  on the other hand, he cannot be excommunicated by human right, because he is superior to any human right.

The Church has neither power nor superiority over the Pope concerning his power of Pope, even in case of heresy


Thesis to be proved

The second point of Cajetan is proved by the fact that the power of the Pope absolutely (absolute) is a power derived from Christ the Lord, and not from the Church, and that Christ has submitted to that power the entire Church, namely, all the faithful without restriction: that is certain of faith [de fide] as we have shown it above.

Therefore, in no case the Church can have a power superior to him, except in a case where the power of the Pope would be made dependent to the Church, and inferior to her: and by the fact that it is made inferior in this case, his power is changed and remains the same as before, since before it was above the Church and independent from her, but in this case it is made dependent and inferior: thus, it never happened that the Church has [had] power over the pope formally, because in order to have a higher power than the papal power in a particular case, it is necessary that the papal power be formally other, and not so extensive and supreme as it was before.

Argument from authority

And one cannot cite any authority stating that Christ the Lord has given in such a manner to the Church a power above the Pope.  Those who were cited in the case of heresy, do not indicate any superiority over the Pope formally, but only speak about avoiding him, getting separated from him, to refuse the communion with him, etc., all things which can be done without a power formally above the Pope’s power.

Lack of foundation of the opposite opinion

There is no basis for the proposition which allows to affirm that Christ the Lord, who gave unrestricted, supreme, and independent power to the Pope and to the Holy See, has determined that, in the case of heresy, such a power would be formally as a power (in ratione potestatis) dependent on and inferior to that of the Church, which implies that it would remain subordinate to that of the Church, and not superior as before.

Cajetan’s SECOND POINT

Theological argument

This second point of Cajetan (the Church has never, in the strict sense, a superior power to the Pope), is widely proved by what has been said above, since the Church must be submitted to the Pope and the power of the Pope did not originate from the Church, as a political power, but immediately from Christ, of whom the Pope is the Vicar.

That, even in the case of heresy, the Church is not superior to the Pope, as a Pope, it appears:

  • On the one hand, because the power of the Pope is in no way derived from the Church, nor does it come from her, but from Christ, therefore never is the power of the Church superior [to that of the Pope].
  • On the other hand, because the power of the Pope, which originated in that of Christ, is established as a supreme power above all other powers of the Church here on earth (as we have shown above with many authorities); no case has been excluded by Christ in which this power [of the Pope] would be limited and subjected to another, but always and in relation to all [powers], He speaks of it as a supreme power and as a monarchy.   When He deals with the case of heresy, He does not assign any superiority [of someone] in relation to the Pope, but He prescribed only to avoid the heretic, to be separated from him, not to communicate with him, all things that do not show any superiority, and which can exist without it.  Therefore, the Church’s power is not superior to the power of the Pope, even in the case of heresy.

Canonical argument

Finally, Canon Law also gives us this conviction when it says that “the First Seat is judged by no one,” and this applies even in cases of infidelity, for the Fathers gathered to examine the case of Pope Marcellinus said: “Judge thyself.”

Cajetan’s THIRD POINT:  The power of the Church has as its object the application of the Papal power to a person


Theological argument

The third point follows from the previous two.  For the Church can declare the crime of the Pontiff and proclaim (proponere) to the faithful that he should be avoided according to divine law, decreeing that a heretic must be avoided.

Now, a pontiff who must be avoided by this provision is necessarily prevented from being made the head of the Church, for he is a member which she must avoid, and therefore he cannot have an influence on her; this is why, by virtue of such a power, the Church dissolves ministerially and dispositively the link of the pontificate with such a person.  The implication is clear: an agent that can induce in a subject a disposition that necessarily causes the separation of the form, a disposition without which the form cannot exist in the subject, has power over the dissolution of the form, and acts mediately on the form, in order to separate it from the subject, and not to destroy it; it is clear in the case of an agent who corrupts a man: he does not destroy the form [the soul], but it induces the dissolution of the form, by putting in the matter a disposition without which the form cannot subsist.

Thus, since the Church can declare the Pontiff as a person to be avoided, she can induce in that person a disposition without which the pontificate cannot stand; the pontificate is so dissolved ministerially and dispositively by the Church, by the authority of Christ, in the same manner as the Church, in choosing the pontiff by the election, she ultimately disposes him to receive the collation of power by Christ the Lord.

Explanation of the words of Cajetan

When Cajetan says that the Church acts with authority (auctoritative) on the conjunction or separation of the Pontificate with the person, and ministerially on the Papacy itself, we must understand it in the sense that the Church has the authority to declare the crime of the Pope, as she has [the power] to choose him to the Papacy, and that what she does with authority in this declaration, acts at the same time ministerially on the form [the Papacy] to join or to separate [the person]: for the form itself, absolutely and in itself (absolute et in se), the Church cannot do anything because the Papal power is not submitted to her.

Canonical argument.

This is congruent with the provisions of the law that sometimes affirm that the deposition of the Pontiff belongs only to God, and that sometimes in case of heresy he can be judged by his inferiors: both are true,

  • On the one side, the “ejection” or deposition of the Pope is reserved only to God in order to be done with authority and from above (auctoritative et principaliter), as stated in the Decree of Gratian, Distinction 79 (Pars I, D 79, c. 11) and in many other places of the law, which say that God has reserved to Himself the judgment of the Apostolic See;
  • Secondly, the Church judges the Pontiff in a ministerial and dispositive manner, by declaring his crime and by proposing him to be avoided, as stated in the Decree of Gratian, in Distinction 40, chapter “Si Papa” (Pars I, D 40, c. 6) and in Part II, Chapter “oves” (q. 7 c. 13).


(To be continued)



Francis, Martians and the Patience of God (NEW VERSION WITH PICTURES)

Francis, Martians and the Patience of God

by Alexandre-Marie

(Translation from the French)

Pope Françis receives smiling José Mujica - President of Uruguay: Marxist, atheist, promoter of homosexuality and abortion. Afterwards, Pope Francis will say to the press that he is pleased to have spoken with "a wise man".

Pope Françis receives smiling José Mujica – President of Uruguay: Marxist, atheist, promoter of homosexuality and abortion. Afterwards, Pope Francis will say to the press that he is pleased to have spoken with “a wise man”.

Unperturbed, he stated that he does not believe in a Catholic God because “there is no Catholic God”; he did not hesitate to say that proselytism is a “perfect absurdity”; he declared that Mary standing at the foot of the cross felt “ deceived ” by God and revolted against Him; he said that the Roman Pontiff has no right to judge “ gays”; he advised the Moslems to seek spiritual sustenance in the Koran…

Decidedly, Francis seems to wish to become the most innovative and atypical pope in history. And we must admit that until now he has achieved this goal brilliantly. To be convinced of this, all we need to do is look at some of the statements he made in his brief pontificate that caused world-wide interest. Unperturbed, he stated that he does not believe in a Catholic God because “ there is no Catholic God ” ; he did not hesitate to say that proselytism is a “ perfect absurdity ” ; he declared that Mary standing at the foot of the cross believed herself to be “ deceived ” by God and revolted against Him ; he said that the Roman Pontiff does not have the right to judge “ gays ” ; he advised the Moslems to seek spiritual sustenance in the Koran; he firmly stated that “ dialogue ” is “ the only means ” of attaining world peace, that the laicization of the State is beneficial towards guaranteeing “ religious pluralism ”, that what is important in the education of children is not teaching them religion, but “ feeding them”, that all men are the sons of God and are saved, “ including atheists ”, that the Petrine ministry is “a pernicious work” , that the Old Covenant “was never revoked ” and that the Jews “ have no need to convert ”, that Faith and Certitude are incompatible, and that the president of Uruguay Jose Mujica, an atheist who endorses homosexuality and abortion, is “ a wise man” 1 .

These are only a few of the pearls dropped by Francis in the exercise of his media, pseudo-magisterium teaching sui generis in which his incontinent logorrhea accompanies foolproof demagoguery.

Rabbi Sergio Bergman Argentine claims to have found in the Cardinal Bergoglio his "rabbi" because he always has "listened and advised about his vocation" and helped "find the Jewish roots of Catholicism" during his ministry in Argentina.

Rabbi Sergio Bergman Argentine claims to have found in the Cardinal Bergoglio his “rabbi” because he always has “listened and advised about his vocation” and helped “find the Jewish roots of Catholicism” during his ministry in Argentina.

Always aiming to go beyond and to outdo himself in his search for originality, “my Rabbi”, as his friend, the Argentinian Rabbi Sergio Bergman calls him, Francis expressed a very novel idea in his sermon given in St Martha House that the Church ought not refuse to baptize Martians (!) if they desire it.  Apparently it stands to reason that the Holy Spirit is pushing the Church to move on, “to go beyond its limits ”, and that we ought not “ place obstacles or close doors ” to people we still erroneously think of as “impure”.  To tell the truth, it is improbable that Francis is seriously thinking about giving baptism to extra-terrestrials, although with him, I must admit that nothing would surprise me anymore.   Rather, it is all about giving Communion to the divorced and remarried and about conferring the sacraments on the “gays”, to use the astounding language of Bergolio.  In this homily he said that “Martians” really represent the divorced and the homosexuals seeking baptism from the Church that is intolerant and that arbitrarily shuts the door to them for being “impure”, thereby preventing the “Spirit” to go where He will.  It goes without saying that this extravagant outburst from the current occupant of St Martha House is a strategy intended to desensitize the minds in order to prepare for the Extraordinary General Assembly Synod of Bishops, convoked by Francis under the theme: “Pastoral challenges for families within the context of evangelization”, which took place in the Vatican between October 5 and 14, 2014.

Several weeks ago there was the case of a telephone call made by Francis to an Argentinian woman who was married to a divorced man in a civil union.  She had written to Francis, expressing her incomprehension at the refusal of her parish priest to hear her Confession and to give her Communion.  According to the testimony of this adulteress – and this was spread throughout the world by the media – the Pope apparently told her that some priests are “more Catholic than the pope” and that, in order to resolve this problem, all she had to do was “go to Confession and Communion in another parish”.  This statement has never been contradicted by the Press Office of the Holy See and therefore lends credence to the story spread by the adulterous couple about the “private telephone call” they received from the Vatican.

This revolutionary program, which most probably will lead to new applications of the reception of the sacraments and of family pastoral care, was insidiously announced by Francis in his Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium and was promulgated last November.  This is what he said in paragraph 47:

The Church is called to be the house of the Father, with doors always wide open.  One concrete sign of such openness is that our church doors should always be open, so that if someone, moved by the Spirit, comes there looking for God, he or she will not find a closed door.  There are other doors that should not be closed either.  Everyone can share in some way in the life of the Church; everyone can be part of the community, nor should the doors of the sacraments be closed for simply any reason.  This is especially true of the sacrament which is itself “the door”: baptism.  The Eucharist, although it is the fullness of sacramental life, is not a prize for the perfect but a powerful medicine and nourishment for the weak.  These convictions have pastoral consequences that we are called to consider with prudence and boldness.  Frequently, we act as arbiters of grace rather than its facilitators.  But the Church is not a tollhouse; it is the house of the Father, where there is a place for everyone, with all their problems.

In addition to irregular marriage cases, it does not take a prophet to foresee that the next Synod will likely deal with the question of the status of those demanding the lifting of the bans against those practising the vice against nature. clip_image001[6]

Several highly symbolic deeds give an indication that this is coming; for starters, the legendary: “Who am I to judge a ‘gay’? ” uttered by Francis at the conclusion of the World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro in an airplane conference on his way back to Rome.  This inconceivable question comes from the lips of the man who right from his election on March 13 of the previous year called himself the Bishop of Rome.

And this statement – we should not forget – came just several weeks after the well publicized funeral of Don Gallo, the famous Communist priest who was an ardent promoter of the “right” to abortion and was also an undisputed champion of the homosexual cause.  His funeral was celebrated with solemnity in Genoa in May 2013 by Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco, the president of the Italian episcopal conference.

Cardinal Bagnasco, president of the Italian episcopal conference, distributing Holy Communion to the trans-sexual LGBT activist Vladimir Luxuria, at the funeral of the priest advocate of homosexuality, Don Gallo.

Cardinal Bagnasco, president of the Italian episcopal conference, distributing Holy Communion to the trans-sexual LGBT activist Vladimir Luxuria, at the funeral of the priest advocate of homosexuality, Don Gallo.

It must be made clear that in the homily, the Cardinal made the panegyric of the revolutionary priest and allowed two transsexuals to make a plea for the LGBT 2 ideology at the time of the “universal prayer” where they ardently thanked the apostate priest for helping “the trans-gender [sic] created beings to feel loved and wanted by God”.  The Italian prelate then personally distributed Communion to them, thereby profaning the Holy Eucharist.  A scandal of the greatest proportion which, it goes without saying, went without any outcry on the part of the Vatican.

The grotesque spectacle of a lesbian duo desecrating the cathedral of Córdoba, with the portrait of the godmother of "their" child, the Argentine president, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, represented by a uniformed aide; the farce was performed with the consent of the local bishop, Mgr. Carlos Ñáñez.

The grotesque spectacle of a lesbian duo desecrating the cathedral of Córdoba, with the portrait of the godmother of “their” child, the Argentine president, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, represented by a uniformed aide; the farce was performed with the consent of the local bishop, Mgr. Carlos Ñáñez.

 

We could well add other similar examples, such as the two Argentinian lesbian “mothers” whose “daughter” was baptized with great publicity in the cathedral in Cordoba last April with the express authorization of the Ordinary of the location, Msgr. Carlos Nanez.  The godmother was none other that the president of Argentina, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, the raging harpy who in 2010 was behind the “laws” permitting “homosexual marriage ” and “ adoption by homosexuals” in Argentina, thereby giving Argentina the sad privilege of becoming the first Latin-American nation to put into place the LGBT agenda of the UN globalists.  A socialist, feminist and “homosexual” icon, this impious woman has thereby become co-responsible, thanks to the sacrilege permitted by the Bishop of Cordoba (co-responsible), for the Christian education of the poor little girl living with her two lesbian “mothers”.

Cardinal Schönborn, primate of Austria, welcomed the success of his compatriot, the "drag queen" Conchita Wurst, the song festival of Eurovision and asks God to "bless his life," because there are "diversity of colors in his multicolored garden. "

Cardinal Schönborn, primate of Austria, welcomed the success of his compatriot, the “drag queen” Conchita Wurst, the song festival of Eurovision and asks God to “bless his life,” because there are “diversity of colors in his multicolored garden. “

 

 

Another example: that of Cardinal Dolan, the Archbishop of New York, who publicly complimented a homosexual football player for making his “coming out ”  (“ Bravo! I am happy for him; may God bless him! ”) or that of Cardinal Schönborn, the Archbishop of Vienna, who warmly congratulated his compatriot, the bearded “ drag queen” Conchita Wurst, for his winning song at the festival on Eurovision (“I am delighted that he had such success! In God’s multicoloured garden there is a variety of colours: I pray that his life may be blessed! ”).

Founded and run by the Jesuits, the Pontifical University of Saint Francis Xavier in Bogota, Colombia, has organized annually since 2001 an “academic pink cycle”, to promote LGBT ideology, under the indulgent gaze of the Vatican.

Let us not forget the statements of Fr. Leonardo Steiner, the general secretary of the episcopal conference in Brazil, the most important Catholic nation in the world with the largest number of faithful.  Fr. Steiner stated that “it is necessary to dialogue about the rights to civil unions between persons of the same sex who decide to live together, and that they should be given legal protection”.  He justifies his remarks by proposing that “the Church is not the same throughout the various epochs” and that the Church “ is searching for ways to respond to the needs of today”. And what can be said of the words of Msgr. Nunzio Galantino, named last March the secretary general of the Italian episcopal conference by Francis himself.  Msgr. Galantino, in response to a journalist who asked him what he hoped from the Church of Italy, said that he hopes “to be able to talk without taboo on any subject, like for example, about married priests, about giving Communion to divorced and homosexuals”.  He also firmly stated that he does not identify himself “with the inexpressive faces of those who pray their Rosaries in front of abortion clinics”.

Founded and run by the Jesuits, the Pontifical University of Saint Francis Xavier in Bogota, Colombia, organized annually since 2001 an "academic pink cycle", to promote LGBT ideology, under the indulgent gaze of the Vatican.

Founded and run by the Jesuits, the Pontifical University of Saint Francis Xavier in Bogota, Colombia, organized annually since 2001 an “academic pink cycle”, to promote LGBT ideology, under the indulgent gaze of the Vatican.

Another example to illustrate the calamitous situations of our times: the pontifical university Saint Francois-Xavier of Bogota in Colombia, founded and run by the Jesuits, has organized every year since 2001 a “Pink academic cycle”, which openly promotes the “gay” lifestyle.  And as is to be expected, there has never been given the slightest sanction to this “pontifical” university, neither on the part of the episcopal conference in Colombia, nor on the part of the Vatican.

These examples could go on and on as cases of defection from the Faith and betrayal of morality have become commonplace among the clerics of the ecumenical “Church of Vatican II”, where apostasy goes hand in hand with bad taste and the most basic lack of human decency.

Father Luigi Ciotti with his mentor and friend, the anarchist priest and defender of sodomites issues, the late Don Gallo.

Father Luigi Ciotti with his mentor and friend, the anarchist priest and defender of sodomites issues, the late Don Gallo.

François hand in hand with Luigi Ciotti - priest, leftist activist, and staunch supporter of the homosexual cause.

François hand in hand with Luigi Ciotti – priest, leftist activist, and staunch supporter of the homosexual cause.

When we really think about it, what else can we expect from a society [conciliar church] whose head makes a public spectacle of himself, who surrounds himself with champions of the sodomite cause such as the Italian priests Luigi Ciotti (a close friend and fellow fighter for homosexual causes of the pervert Don Gallo), who was filmed holding hands with the Pope by Italian television and Michele de Paolis, whose hand he kissed after having concelebrated with him in St Martha House under the watchful eyes of journalists who were eager to capture the moment for history?

Speaking to the press, Francois bowed deeply to reverently kiss the hand of Michele De Paolis:  priest and supporter of gay rights, after the pope concelebrated with him at home Santa Marta, in the Vatican.

Speaking to the press, Francois bowed deeply to reverently kiss the hand of Michele De Paolis: priest and supporter of gay rights, after the pope concelebrated with him at home Santa Marta, in the Vatican.

Pope Francis was named "Person of the Year 2013" by The Advocate, the iconic US magazine promoting the LGBT ideology.

Pope Francis was named “Person of the Year 2013″ by The Advocate, the iconic US magazine promoting the LGBT ideology.

What can be said of the unwarranted – to say the least – award “the Person of the Year 2013” accorded to Francis in December by the American magazine The Advocate, the major LGBT publication in the USA?  This embarrassing and troubling distinction awarded to Francis was met with not even the slightest explanation on the part of the Vatican.  At best, all this will no doubt offend the souls of the faithful.

It goes without saying that this brief list of repeated scandals, chosen to illustrate the abysmal conciliar debacle, could go on indefinitely.  Instead, what will surely not go on indefinitely is Divine Patience.  We can say this without a shadow of a doubt because God has loved us so much that He warned us in advance about the outcome of this grotesque farce.  We, who are the powerless witnesses of this tragic hour wherein the mystery of iniquity is unfolding in all its arrogance, we are witnessing this abominable imposture, amazed by the unprecedented greeting, this profane and highly subversive “buona sera” pronounced in the loggia of St. Peter’s Square on March 13, 2013, which already then was the symbol presaging the endless calamities that would occur during this pontificate.

Not wanting to predict the future – as no one knows neither the day nor the hour when the Son of man will return to earth to judge each man according to his works – but when faced with so many scandals, can we not ask this question:  Are we living in the times of the reign of the beast and the false prophet as announced in the Apocalypse by St. John (Book of Revelation, Chapters 13 to 19)? What is yet to come before the manifestation of “another”, as Our Lord called him (John 5, 43), in order for “ the man of iniquity ”, the “ son of perdition ”, “ the adversary ”, as St. Paul called him (2 Thess. 2, 3), to appear?

“Rome will lose the Faith and will become the seat of the Antichrist”, Our Lady foretold at La Salette (1846). By committing these scandals, is not Francis steadily paving the way for the coming of the Antichrist?


News of Occupied Rome

News of occupied Rome

In the traditional world the suspicion seems to be circulating:  You criticize the Pope, therefore you are sedevacantists, or at least you are beginning to become one.  We reply by citing an author who is not suspected of being a sedevacantist:

Some, to put us down, accuse us of being overly traditional or even sedevacantist. Well, I’m not a sedevacantist; we are not sedevacantists, because sedevacantism destroys the visibility of the Catholic Church.  The Catholic Church is visibly recognizable by its exterior characteristics, She is always One, Catholic, Apostolic and Roman.  The Catholic Church is visible because She is not a purely spiritual entity, She is not simply a gathering of persons who think alike, nor a movement of ideas or a school of thought but a true society having a juridical structure having a hierarchy coming from living men with a Head recognized by all, as in other human societies.  This Head is the reigning Pontiff Pope Francis, in whom we recognize the Vicar of Christ. But we know that, precisely because the Church is a visible institution, we must always make a distinction between the Church and the men of the Church: The Church is always visible, infallible and indestructible, immaculate, in faith and morals; men of the Church are not all and are not always impeccable nor infallible.  Even the Pope may be respectfully criticized.  The Pope is not Jesus-Christ nor His successor:  he is His Vicar, but it is Jesus-Christ who holds and governs the Church 1.

The Pope asks the blessing of a heretic

Pope Francis received, on June 14, the new Anglican “Archbishop” of Canterbury, Justin Welby, who was wearing

the episcopal ring offered to the “Archbishop” Ramsey by Paul VI. The Pope took advantage of the opportunity in order to ask to be “blessed” by this heretic, who is nothing but a simple layman because Anglican orders are not valid.

But that shouldn’t shock us if we recall that Benedict XVI allowed himself to be blessed by a Rabbi:

« At the end of an [inter-religious] encounter [at the Monastery of Saint Benedict in Sao Paulo on May 11, 2007], Rabbi Henry Sobel, 63 years old,

from the Jewish Congregation of Sao Paulo, declared: “The Pope [Benedict XVI] is a friend of the Jewish people”. […] The Rabbi explained that after having asked “very humbly” for the Pope’s blessing, the Pope, having given it, then accepted in his turn to receive a blessing from him. » (Zenit.org, May 11, 2007.)

The recipe of happiness for Francis

« What is the recipe for happiness? »

In answer to this question asked by the Argentinean journalist Pablo Calvo on July 7, the Pope reflected a moment, and then became animated.  Visibly relaxed, he delivered in 10 points his “recipe for happiness”:

1. Live and let live:

« The Romans have a saying that we can take as a theme which goes “Go ahead, and let the others go ahead”. Live and let live, it’s the first step towards peace and happiness. »

2.  Give yourself to others:

« Those who are isolated run the risk of becoming selfish.  And stagnant water is the first to become corrupted. »

3.  Be animated with kindness and humility:

« In “Don Segundo Sombra” (an Argentinean novel by Ricardo Guiraldes), the hero tells how, young, he was like a waterfall off a mountain which rushes over everything; become an adult, he was like a river which went ahead then, as an older man, that he advanced, but slowly, as if canalized.  I use this image of the poet and novelist Ricardo Guiraldes, this last adjective, canalized.  The capacity to move yourself with kindness and humility.  The elderly have this wisdom; they are the memory of a people.  And a nation that cares not for its elderly doesn’t have a future. »

4.  Play with children:

«Consumerism has led us to the anguish of losing a healthy culture of pleasure:  read, enjoy art…Today, I don’t hear many confessions, but in Buenos Aires, I heard the confessions of a lot of people and I asked the young mothers who came, “How many children do you have?  Do you play with them?”  It was an unexpected question, but it’s a way of saying that children are the key to a healthy culture.  It’s difficult for parents who go to work early and come home when their children are sleeping.  It’s difficult, but it must be done. »

5. Spend Sunday with the family:

« The other day, at Campobasso, I encountered University students and people from the workforce and, to each I reminded them that we don’t work on Sunday.  Sunday is for the family. »

6.  Help the young to find work:

« We should be creative with this part of the population.  Because of a lack of opportunities, they can end up falling into drugs.  And the amount of suicides is very high among the young without work.  The other day I read, but I’m not sure it’s a scientific fact, that there are 75 million young people under the age of 25 who have no work.  And it doesn’t suffice to just feed them:  we must make up for them classes of one year to become plumbers, electricians, tailors and seamstresses… It’s dignity that will help them bring food to the table. »

7.  Take care of the world we live in:

« We must take care of creation, and we don’t.  It’s one of our greatest challenges. »

8.  Rapidly forget whatever is negative:

« The need to speak ill of others is a mark of having little esteem for oneself. That’s like saying that I feel so bad, that instead of lifting myself up, I put others down.  It is healthy to speedily forget whatever is negative. »

9.  Respect those who think differently:

« One can go all the way to witnessing with another, as long as both make progress in this dialogue.  But there’s nothing worse than religious proselytizing, one that paralyzes:  “I dialogue with you to convince you”.  No.  Each one dialogues according to who they are.  The Church grows by its attractiveness, not by proselytizing. »

10.  Actively seek peace:

« We are living in a time where wars are numerous. […]  War destroys.  The call to peace needs to be cried out.  Sometimes the word “peace” brings to mind the idea of “calm”, but peace is never tranquillity:  it is always an active peace. »

God is not even mentioned.  It used to be, in illo tempore, that joy was a fruit of the Holy Ghost (Gal. 5, 22), but for the Pope, one has no need of the faith, nor of Our Savior Jesus Christ, to be happy!

Prayer for peace « was absolutely not a failure »

On May 29, the Pope, Rabbi Skorka and the Imam Abu (friends of the Pope who accompanied him during his whole trip in Israel) gave each other the accolade in front of the “Temple Wall” under the amused eyes of Jewish journalists who qualified the trio “the Holy Trinity”!  The rest of the story takes place on June 8:  in the gardens of the Vatican, the Pope, together with the Jewish and Palestinian Presidents “prayed for Peace”; the Muslim Representative, departing from the prepared text of his prayer, asked his “Master” (in Arabic):  « Grant us the victory over the infidel people ».  Two days later, Mossoul fell into the hands of the Muslims who then massacred the Christians.  And ever since then, the blood of Christians flows in the Middle East:  we see children decapitated, adults crucified, etc.

Without doubt God did not directly answer the prayer of the Imam, but He could have permitted this triumph of Islam to punish our sins, and especially the horrible apostasy of the Conciliar Church who presents Islam as if it were a respectable religion while it is nothing but an intellectual imposture (a tissue of contradictions) which imposes itself by violence2.

But the prayer for peace in the Holy Land « was absolutely not a failure », affirmed tranquilly Pope Francis on August 18 in the plane returning from Korea:

« Holy Father, seeing the war in Gaza, wasn’t the prayer for peace organized at the Vatican last June 8th a failure according to you? »

« Thank you, thank you for the question.  This prayer for peace was absolutely not a failure. Firstly, the initiative didn’t come from me:  the initiative of praying together came from the two Presidents, from the President of the State of Israel and from the President of the State of Palestine. […] These two men are men of peace, they are men who believe in God, and who have lived through so many horrible things, so many horrible things that they are convinced that the only way to resolve this story is through negotiation, dialogue and peace.  But now for your question: wasn’t it a failure? No, I believe that the door is open. […] The door of prayer was opened.  One says: “we must pray”.  It’s a gift, peace is a gift, a gift which is merited by our work, but it’s a gift.  And tell mankind that with the way of negotiation – which is important, of dialogue – which is important, there is also that of prayer.  It’s true.  Afterwards came what came.  But that is circumstantial.  On the other hand, our meeting was not [just] a circumstance.  It is a fundamental step of human behavior:  prayer.  Now the smoke of bombs, the wars, don’t allow us to see the door, but the door remains open from now on.  And as I believe in God, I believe that the Lord sees this door, and He sees all those who pray and all those who ask Him to help us.  Yes, I love this question.  Thank you, thank you for having posed it.  Thank you3. »

Errare humanum est, persevare diabolicumHow much time will it take before the hierarchy of the Church realizes the Utopia of Conciliar ecumenism?  And how long will God permit the infiltration of the hierarchy by the Masonic Lodges?

Construct an authentic brotherhood among people

We know that Tertullian said that the blood of martyrs is the seed of Christians.  As for the Pope, after the assassination of three religious of Burundi on September 7th, he hopes that « the blood spilled would become the seed of hope to construct an authentic brotherhood among people ».

Since the last Council, the Vatican actively works at the construction of this “brotherhood”.  As for Pope Francis, he established in Buenos Aires, while he was Archbishop there, a scholastic inter-religious and multi-cultured network of cultural integration called “Scholas Occurrentes”. On September 4, the Pope explained to the delegates of the Scholas Occurrentes the reason for this network:  to organize inter-religious football matches, to combat the unemployment of the young, to promote the “culture of encounter”, to struggle against “discrimination”, to promote dialogue between religions, to create a “human village” that brings peace and hope:  « Sports saves us from selfishness; […] let us walk through life together; […] the young must build the future; […] let us build bridges, not walls; […] let us share our experiences; […] let us enter into the spontaneity of life”, etc. »

This project has nothing specifically Christian about it, it is naturalistic (without reference to the supernatural end of man) and won’t displease the “brethren” [i.e. the Masons]. Indeed, we know that the end of Freemasonry is the “reconstruction of the Temple”, that is to say, to rebuild all humanity under a “universal republic” with no reference to the supernatural end of man, nor to Our Lord Jesus Christ.

The “United Nations” of religions

The project of the Pope is in perfect harmony with those of the other leaders of the contemporary world.  It is thus that the former Spanish President Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero proposed on July 15, at the time of the international symposium on World Peace at the University of Nebrija of Madrid, the creation of a “permanent alliance between religious denominations” joined to the “Alliance of civilizations” (one of his creations) and to the United Nations.

As for Shimon Peres, the former President of Israel, he met the Pope again on September 4, 2014 and suggested an “Organization of the United Nations of religions” to fight against all violence perpetrated in the name of the faith.  « The Pope didn’t engage himself personally, but listened carefully and expressed his respect for this initiative, assuring him of the attention of the Dicasteries of the Roman Curia concerned – the Pontifical Counsel for inter-religious dialogue and the Pontifical Counsel Justice and Peace », specified Father Lombardi.

Evangelical Christians:  The Pope has gone to find his brothers

On August 12, 2014, Pope Francis affirmed: « the Pope has gone to find his brothers! », while visiting an Evangelical [= Protestant] Community.  He encourages them to walk « on the path of unity », in « searching for Jesus » because « when one walks in the Presence of God, one finds this brotherhood ».

Pope Francis gave a speech in which he indicated « the path of Christian holiness:  every day, seek Jesus to encounter Him and every day allow yourself to be sought by Jesus and allow yourself to be found by Jesus ».  Finally, the Pope asked pardon in the name of the Church for the persecutions perpetrated by Catholics against Evangelical Christians throughout the course of History: « Among those who wrote up these laws and persecuted, denounced our Pentecostal brothers because they were “enthusiastic” almost “mad”, there were some Catholics: I am the Pastor of the Catholics: I beg your pardon for what happened.  I ask your pardon for these Catholic brothers and sisters who have not understood and who were tempted by the devil and did as the brothers of Joseph.  I ask the Lord to give us the grace to acknowledge and to forgive…Thank you! »

The laws for which the Pope asks pardon are the laws which restrained the freedom of exercising a public cult of certain Evangelical sects in Italy, under Pope Pius XI.  They were perfectly in accord with Catholic doctrine…before Vatican II.

1Roberto De Mattei in the “Courrier de Rome”, June 2014, p. 6.  Roberto de Mattei presents himself as a disciple of professor Plinio Correa de Oliveira, Founder of the TFP (Work Family Property, see the “Sel de la terre” 28, p. 185; 39, p. 262 and 46, p. 266), which he frequented during about 20 years (1976-1995) and of which he wrote a biography.  He directed the “Alleanza Cattolica”.  He is president of the foundation “Lepanto” and he founded and directed the “centre culturel Lepante” (1982-2006). He writes regularly in the “Correspondance européenne”.  He is now in the “Ecclesia Dei” movement, but that doesn’t keep him from participating in the “Courrier de Rome” congresses presided by Bishop Fellay (for example the next one, in January 2015).  In the beginning of September 2014, he gave a conference during a Pilgrimage of the Society to Rome in front of an “audience of very interested Priests” (DICI #300, p. 10).

2See especially the works of Father Guy Pages (www.islam-et-verite.com <http://www.islam-et-verite.com/> ).

3Osservatore Romano en langue française, Thursday, August 21, 2014, 34, page 16.