Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Church History’ Category

State Street in Chicago in 1903. Picture taken from McMahan Photo Art Gallery & Archive Website. 

The year is 1903. Horse and buggy is the main way of travel. The airplane was just invented in December and could barely fly 15 seconds over a distance of 200 feet. There are no televisions or radios. Electricity and indoor plumbing are extremely rare. Homes won’t have refrigeration for another 10 years. The city of Las Vegas won’t be established for another 2 years and Arizona, New Mexico, and Oklahoma are only territories. The world has not seen the Bolshevik Revolution and the rise of Communism. It has not yet seen the two great World Wars. It has not seen the bomb. The rivers, lakes, and oceans are pristine, because there are no plastics and other modern contaminates to pollute the waters. Lastly, the Catholic Church is flourishing around the world and Pope St. Pius X was just elected Pope.

One would think times were pretty innocent and good, all things considering. Not so according to the newly elected pope and saint. He thought the world was going to hell in a hand-basket. He even suggested that we were entering the end of days.

Read carefully these words of Pope St. Pius X:

“We were terrified beyond all else by the disastrous state of human society today. For who can fail to see that society is at the present time, more than in any past age, suffering from a terrible and deep-rooted malady which, developing every day and eating into its inmost being, is dragging it to destruction? You understand, Venerable Brethren, what this disease is – apostasy from God, than which in truth nothing is more allied with ruin, according to the word of the Prophet: ‘For behold they that go far from Thee shall perish’ (Ps. 1xxii., 17). We saw therefore that, in virtue of the ministry of the Pontificate, which was to be entrusted to Us, We must hasten to find a remedy for this great evil, considering as addressed to Us that Divine command: ‘Lo, I have set thee this day over the nations and over kingdoms, to root up, and to pull down, and to waste, and to destroy, and to build, and to plant’ (Jerem. i., 10). But, cognizant of Our weakness, We recoiled in terror from a task as urgent as it is arduous…

When all this is considered there is good reason to fear lest this great perversity may be as it were a foretaste, and perhaps the beginning of those evils which are reserved for the last days; and that there may be already in the world the ‘Son of Perdition’ of whom the Apostle speaks (II. Thess. ii., 3). Such, in truth, is the audacity and the wrath employed everywhere in persecuting religion, in combating the dogmas of the faith, in brazen effort to uproot and destroy all relations between man and the Divinity! While, on the other hand, and this according to the same apostle is the distinguishing mark of Antichrist, man has with infinite temerity put himself in the place of God, raising himself above all that is called God; in such wise that although he cannot utterly extinguish in himself all knowledge of God, he has contemned God’s majesty and, as it were, made of the universe a temple wherein he himself is to be adored. ‘He sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself as if he were God’ (II. Thess. ii., 2).

Verily no one of sound mind can doubt the issue of this contest between man and the Most High. Man, abusing his liberty, can violate the right and the majesty of the Creator of the Universe; but the victory will ever be with God – nay, defeat is at hand at the moment when man, under the delusion of his triumph, rises up with most audacity. Of this we are assured in the holy books by God Himself…we must use every means and exert all our energy to bring about the utter disappearance of the enormous and detestable wickedness, so characteristic of our time – the substitution of man for God” (E Supremi).

We should ponder carefully the words of this holy pope and realize that if he saw how bad things were in 1903, what would he say today?

We’ve not seen a true pope in 64 years. We have a hard time figuring out how to explain the difficulty of the Church being virtually wiped off the face of the earth with all the offices vacant and no end in sight. What everybody thinks is the Catholic Church is nothing more than the greatest hypocritical organization of all time, which has been completely united to the world and its standards.

Abominations are viewed as ordinary and praiseworthy aspects of human life. Homosexuality is found as in the days of Sodom and Gomorrah. “Transgenderism” is everywhere. The Pentagon has recently estimated that over 14,000 military personal identify as transgender. [1] A highly decorated retired US Navy Seal has been identifying as a woman for the past 10 years and is praised for his transition by his fellow Seals. I believe these abominations have feminism as its root.

In 1909, Pope St. Pius X told French Politicians, “Women can never be man’s equal and cannot therefore enjoy equal rights.” [2] This biblical and Catholic teaching is utterly rejected by practically everyone, including traditional Catholics, who will defend voting “conservative” women into high public offices. Who condemns women working in Congress, as prime ministers, judges, police and military officers, etc.? This is one the greatest evils ever and it’s considered good and righteous by virtually everyone.

“Woe to you that call evil good, and good evil: that put darkness for light, and light for darkness: that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter” (Isaiah 5:20).

Catholics are in complete denial of the gravity of our situation. Some Catholics have a delusional belief that we’re actually coming out of this mess as we spiral faster and faster to hell. These people don’t think the great falling away really exists except on paper. It’s something that will always exist in the future. According to Pope Pius XI, the heresies of Protestantism was the beginning of the great apostasy of mankind from the Church. 

Most of us are numb to the immorality in our society and deny they are immoralities at all. Catholics are as immodest as the rest of the world as they participate in the very evils the Church has always condemned. The Church is to be counter-cultural, yet you couldn’t distinguish a Catholic from the common heathen.

We all live and eat in luxury. Not even King Henry VIII lived as good as the average citizen. We complain about everything as we fill our belly’s in a climate controlled environment on nice furniture and in the softest clothing.

We have become so soft and pathetic. Never do we take up the Cross of Christ and accept suffering. Very few Catholics truly dispose themselves to imitate Jesus. We cast suffering aside and labor to be comfortable in all things. We care little for eternal truths, but ardently seek continual indulgence of its honors, riches, and pleasures of every kind. We contemn poverty, mortification, and the Cross of Christ. Most of us think we’re following Jesus although we exert much energy in self-love and no virtues.

How many of us “glory in tribulation knowing that tribulation worketh patience” (Rom. 5:3)?

“Jesus said to his disciples: If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me” (Matt. 16:24). Can we say that we truly do, when we can’t even go one night without having a nice supper?

St. Paul wrote to the Romans, “And they who are in the flesh, cannot please God…For if you live according to the flesh, you shall die: but if by the Spirit you mortify the deeds of the flesh, you shall live…For the Spirit himself giveth testimony to our spirit, that we are the sons of God. And if sons, heirs also; heirs indeed of God, and joint heirs with Christ: yet so, if we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified with him” (Roman 8:8,13,16-17).

How many of us suffer with Him by imitating His life of meekness, humility, mortification, and submission to God’s Will in order that we may go to heaven?

Not even the scariest prophecies are as scary as the state of our world today. The great falling away is more devastating than any pope or prophet could have imaged.

I don’t know if the following prophecy by St. Antony of the Desert is authentic, but the accuracy is close.

“Men will surrender to the spirit of the age. They will say that if they had lived in our day, Faith would be simple and easy. But in their day, they will say, things are complex; the Church must be brought up to date and made meaningful to the day’s problems. When the Church and the world are one, then those days are at hand because our Divine Master placed a barrier between His things and the things of the world. A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him saying, ‘You are mad, you are not like us”. [3]

My own Catholic brethren think I’m mad for posting “extremist” and unpopular ideas. Yet, they were commonplace when the world was Catholic. The false prophets of the world have steered Catholics away from Catholic thinking.

We’re more concerned about who’s conservative or liberal, democrat or republican. We care more about the latest ballgame winner or what celebrity is sleeping with who than with the four last things; death, judgment, hell, and heaven. The devil’s bread and circuses keep man aloof. His greatest lies are that most people go to heaven, sin is not that bad, and God is not that severe. 

“And many false prophets shall rise, and shall seduce many. And because iniquity hath abounded, the charity of many shall grow cold. But he that shall persevere to the end, he shall be saved” (Matt. 24:11-13).

We’re in a living nightmare. It’s frightening to think just how many will perish for all eternity. Man is oblivious to his path of destruction. Catholics aren’t far from the rest of mankind.  

“But because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold, nor hot, I will begin to vomit thee out of my mouth” (Apoc. 3:16).

Fr. Leo Haydock explains this Apocalypse verse in his biblical commentary, “A dreadful reprehension, whatever exposition we follow. According to the common interpretation, by the cold are meant those who are guilty of great sins; by the hot, such as are zealous and fervent in piety and the service of God; by the lukewarm or tepid, they who are slothful, negligent, indolent, as to what regards Christian perfection, the practice of virtue, and an exact observance of what regards the service of God. On this account they are many times guilty in the sight of God of great sins, they forfeit the favour and grace of God, fancying themselves good enough and safe, because they live as others commonly do, and are not guilty of many scandalous and shameful crimes, to which they see others addicted. 

The Church and world are one, because lukewarmness is universal.

 

 

Footnotes:

[1] 14700-Transgender-Troops-.pdf (palmcenter.org)

[2] NYT April 22, 1909

[3] [Disquisition CXIV] Quoted in Voice of Fatima, 23 January 1968

Read Full Post »

An ancient coin with the image of Antiochus IV Epiphanes adorned with a fiery diadem.  The Greek inscription reads ΘΕΟΥ ΕΠΙΦΑΝΟΥΣ ΝΙΚΗΦΟΡΟΥ / ΒΑΣΙΛΕΩΣ ΑΝΤΙΟΧΟΥ (King Antiochus, God Manifest, Bearer of Victory). This Old Testament tyrant was an archetype of Antichrist. 

 

Those who follow my website know that I don’t go along to get along. I’ve taken a lot of heat criticizing well-respected bishops and priests for rejecting the 1955 Missal of Pope Pius XII. I take the very unpopular position that women are not permitted by God to hold public office. I don’t agree with St. Robert Bellarmine and most theologians that occult heretics are members of the Body of the Church. [1] I don’t believe a true pope can fall into heresy ever and I don’t hold the common opinion that universal and peaceful acceptance guarantees a true pope.

I reject the Three Days of Darkness prophecy and I’m generally skeptical of apparitions and so-called miracles, exceptions would be Lourdes and Fatima. 

Truth is what matters. It brought me out of the Vatican 2 religion and keeps in the Catholic Church. 

With that being said, the following study on Antichrist is a position that I’ve held for many years. It is my own personal belief only and I’m offering it as an argument against the common opinion of almost every saint and theologian.

When we talk about Antichrist, we generally think of the last days. When and how the end of time will occur is a fascinating question. Even the Apostles’ asked Jesus, “Tell us, when shall these things be? And what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the consummation of the world” (Matt. 24:3)?

The Holy Scriptures and the Roman Catechism describe what must take place before the Second Coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The Gospel will first be preached throughout the whole world (Matt. 24:14, Mark 13:10) followed by a great apostasy and the rise of Antichrist (II Thess. 2:3).

St. John warns: 18 Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that Antichrist cometh, even now there are become many Antichrists: whereby we know that it is the last hour.

Notice the last hour begins with Christ, not at the end of the world. St. John continues:

22 Who is a liar, but he who denieth that Jesus is the Christ? This is Antichrist, who denieth the Father, and the Son. 23 Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father. He that confesseth the Son, hath the Father also” (I John 2:18-23)….

“And every spirit that dissolveth Jesus, is not of God: and this is Antichrist, of whom you have heard that he cometh, and he is now already in the world. 4 You are of God, little children, and have overcome him. Because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world. 5 They are of the world: therefore of the world they speak, and the world heareth them” (I John 4:3-5).

St. John seems to speak about Antichrist as a singular person and as a collective of men by saying it’s every spirit that makes Antichrist.

The Church has spoken very little of Antichrist. I could only find a few references. None of them say that Antichrist is one person. Most saints and theologians have concluded that Antichrist is one final individual, who stands apart from all the antichrists of history. Fr. Denis Fahey says that it is “certain” that Antichrist will be one man. Cardinal Manning also spoke of the forerunners of Antichrist. He explains how Antichrist reigns as a king and leader of the world.

Cornelius À Lapide explains in his commentary: And now already he [Antichrist] is in the world, not in person, but in spirit; that is to say, in his forerunners. This is what Paul says, “The mystery of iniquity doth already work.” (2 Thess. ii. 7.)

Lapide also explains First John 4:5 that “they” who are of the world are heretics. [2] However, St. John doesn’t refer to just heretics but everyone that desolveth Jesus. Therefore, when Antichrist speaks, the world heareth them.

Cornelius À Lapide says Antichrist is not already in the world “in person, but in spirit.” Haydock’s biblical commentary says the same, “Not in his person, but in his spirit and in his precursors.”

Perhaps, it’s more accurate to say Antichrist had not come in his fullness in St. John’s time. Why can’t all the false christs make up Antichrist? This meaning actually fits what St. John says, “every spirit that dissolveth Jesus, is not of God: and this is Antichrist, of whom you have heard that he cometh, and he is now already in the world.” 

Antichrist is coming and he’s here already. In this understanding, Antichrist in St. John’s day didn’t have all the power given to him by Satan. According to St. John in the Apocalypse, this happens when Satan is released from hell. [3]

St. Augustine speculated that Antichrist was a “mass of men” or the “Roman Empire,” based on the common opinions of his day. [4]

The Council of Chalcedon in 451 A.D. references St. John to demonstrate that every heretic makes up Antichrist. [5]

The belief that Antichrist is one final individual man comes from an interpretation of St. Paul’s Second Letter to the Thessalonians chapter 2. This restrictive interpretation doesn’t square well with St. John and particularly the teaching of Pope St. Pius X. I offer the following alternative interpretation. Here’s what St. Paul wrote:

“3 Let no man deceive you by any means, for unless there come a revolt first, and the man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition,

4 Who opposeth, and is lifted up above all that is called God, or that is worshipped, so that he sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself as if he were God. 5 Remember you not, that when I was yet with you, I told you these things? 6 And now you know what withholdeth, that he may be revealed in his time. 7 For the mystery of iniquity already worketh; only that he who now holdeth, do hold, until he be taken out of the way.

8 And then that wicked one shall be revealed whom the Lord Jesus shall kill with the spirit of his mouth; and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming, him, 9 Whose coming is according to the working of Satan, in all power, and signs, and lying wonders. 10 And in all seduction of iniquity to them that perish: Because they receive not the love of the truth that they might be saved. Therefore God shall send them the operation of error, to believe a lie” (II Thess. 2:3-10).

In verses 3 and 8, St. Paul says “the man of sin,” and “the son of perdition,” is the same as the “wicked one” who shall be revealed.

The son of perdition is Judas (John 17:12). However, Judas is already dead. We don’t believe in reincarnation because St. Paul condemns it in Hebrews 9:27. Therefore, St. Paul must be referring to the spirit of Judas, which is betrayal.

If St. John can mean “in spirit” when referring to Antichrist being in the world in his day, why can’t St. Paul be referring to a spirit of Judas in “son of perdition?”

We see the same types of allusions elsewhere in Scripture. The “woman” in the Apocalypse can be understood as the Blessed Virgin Mary and/or the Church. The “woman” is not necessarily just one person.

Another allusion is with Our Lord speaking about John the Baptist. Jesus says, “But I say to you, that Elias is already come, and they knew him not” (Matt. 17:12). It wasn’t literally but mystically Elias or the spirit of Elias.  The angel Gabriel had foretold to his father Zacharias, in St. Luke: “And he shall go before Him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord” (Lk 1:17).

The spirit of Judas is the spirit of betrayal because Christ shed his blood for the whole world, but man will betray Christ for what He did for them.

A mass of men as Antichrist is supported by Pope St. Pius X’s pivotal teaching in E Supremi, (On the Restoration of All Things in Christ), Oct. 4, 1903:

5. When all this is considered there is good reason to fear lest this great perversity may be as it were a foretaste, and perhaps the beginning of those evils which are reserved for the last days; and that there may be already in the world the “Son of Perdition” of whom the Apostle speaks (II. Thess. ii., 3). Such, in truth, is the audacity and the wrath employed everywhere in persecuting religion, in combating the dogmas of the faith, in brazen effort to uproot and destroy all relations between man and the Divinity! While, on the other hand, and this according to the same apostle is the distinguishing mark of Antichrist, man has with infinite temerity put himself in the place of God, raising himself above all that is called God; in such wise that although he cannot utterly extinguish in himself all knowledge of God, he has contemned God’s majesty and, as it were, made of the universe a temple wherein he himself is to be adored. “He sitteth in the temple of God, showing himself as if he were God” (II. Thess. Ii., 2).

Pope St. Pius X declared that man does what the son of perdition (Antichrist) does in the verse that has been widely interpreted as a single person. If man does what Antichrist does, why look to Antichrist as their god if they have already made themselves as God? What’s the purpose of Antichrist? It only makes sense if Antichrist is a mass of men.

There are other reasons to believe that Antichrist is not one individual.

Consider the fact that most people don’t worship God. Yet, we are to believe the whole world (except the elect) will worship one person as their Savior and God. This is extremely far-fetched.

It’s well-known that Christians hold the belief in a final Antichrist. There are plenty of movies and books out there on the subject. If one man were to come on the scene and do super wonders and claim to be Christ, everyone will know that this is the guy to avoid. Don’t worship him, he’s bad news.

People aren’t that stupid. They’re not going to fall for one man being the Savior and God of the world. However, the world of men worshipping themselves as God is more plausible. In fact, it’s already happening and Pope St. Pius X was seeing it in his day.

Every person who makes himself the final arbiter of truth has made himself god. When men decide over and against the Word of God and the infallible teaching of the Catholic Church, they have made themselves the final arbiter of truth. The Christ they claim is not the Christ that is.

Not only is this played out in every non-Catholic religion, but it’s found in the world in general. God has given us the power to share in His creation, but man has taken it upon himself how he will apply and use it. The Natural Law is rejected and replaced for man’s wishes and desires. Artificial contraception is used in order that man can have only the pleasure of the procreative act without God’s intention for it. When the procreative act is procreative, man destroys the life. He has been waging a massive war against the unborn in order that he may be free to live as he wants. Hundreds of millions of babies have been murdered in the name of the rights of man. Now man decides his gender and attempts to change it through chemicals and medical procedures. Man looks to himself and worships.

Jesus didn’t get the whole world to worship Him with all of His signs and miracles but Antichrist does? Men today have seen the great illusionists as Harry Houdini and others. Fantastic wonders would be written off as great illusions. But man has generated fantastic and lying wonders through technology and medicine.  

Men generally hate powerful individuals. They don’t worship them, they despise them. Who’s going to make everybody wonder and be happy when everybody is so diverse in thinking?

Men today are more likely to attribute some powerful fantastic miracle worker as an alien from outer space, but not god to be worshipped.

A single individual Antichrist would be a far more likely scenario in every century before the 20th century. Man depended on God to make it through life. But man is so technologically advanced today, that he only relies on himself to make it through life.

It would also seem that one man can’t do what Christ couldn’t, especially in a time where people today are more skeptical than ever. Therefore, it must be a collective or unit of men that makes Antichrist. Jesus taught, “He that is not with me, is against me” (Matt. 12:30). We either accept the works of Christ or we take the Mark of the Beast.

Therefore, I think the coming of Antichrist is reference to his fullness thereof. Antichrist has always been in the world to some extent, but his full power doesn’t come until Satan is released to give him that power for the final epic battle of time.

Antichrist in his fullness will be revealed by “power, and signs, and lying wonders.”

Look what man has done in the last 100 years. Man has gone from electricity and the industrial revolution to things he absolutely has no business messing with. He has harnessed nuclear power that can destroy the world a dozen times over. He can manipulate the weather.

Christ once made a great storm cease at the sound of His Voice. Now, man can create the storm.

Man has reached the highest heavens to the lowest depths. He has developed special effects technology such as 3-dimentional holograms and computer generated imagery. Both are so life-like, that it’s difficult to tell what’s real and what’s not. These holograms can even be transmitted from space.

He can do heart transplants and heal many sicknesses. He has cloned animals, plants and himself. He uses Petri dishes and test tubes to help make babies. He has genetically modified most of the foods we eat, and has even genetically modified himself. He uses animals to harvest human organs for transplants. If he’s not already been successful, he’s trying to mix humans with animals to make hybrid creatures. 

Lastly, he puts out false miracles as the Pharaoh’s magicians who were able to replicate the first four of Moses’ miracles. These false miracles were used to keep Pharaoh in his false religion and doubt God. False miracles today, keep people bound in their false religion. The false miracles of Antichrist will be preeminent to those of Pharaoh’s time. If Pharaoh’s magicians could change water into blood, fake priests could make “Eucharistic” hosts bleed.

What greater “power, and signs, and lying wonders,” can there be that man is doing now?

There’s also the power of numbers. A powerful navy in the 1500’s was one of many warships and sailors. Today, one person doesn’t rule the world but rather organizations of powerful people with all the money.

We are at point where we can’t tell who’s telling the truth about anything. Governments and their propaganda media tell you what they want you to know. Medical doctors are diametrically opposed with one another on basic medicine and medical procedures. Lawyers and judges are unjust as hell. Police will oppress the people on the order of their bosses. The military will wage war and kill innocent people out of obedience to senile, ignorant, power hungry, narcissistic, and evil politicians. The bankers always win in the end.

St. John tells us several times that Antichrist will wage a war against the Faithful and overcome them.

“7 And it [the Beast] was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them. And power was given him over every tribe, and people, and tongue, and nation. 8 And all that dwell upon the earth adored him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb, which was slain from the beginning of the world” (Apoc. 13:7-8). See also Apoc. 11:7, 12:17, and 19:19.

Antichrist has already overcome. There are no more Christian nations left on earth. [6] The forest of false religions has hidden the true Church making religion look ridiculous. We are at the mercy of the godless rulers who control the government, currency, food, military, law enforcement, and even religion. There’s no where to take refuge but the Hearts of Our Lord Jesus and the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Christ never said anything about one individual being Antichrist at the end of time. Rather, Jesus tells us, “many false prophets shall rise, and shall seduce many” (Matt. 24:11). “For there shall arise false christs and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders, insomuch as to deceive (if possible) even the elect. Behold I have told it to you, beforehand” (Matt. 24:24-25).

Why not mention this great individual Antichrist if he were to come? It would seem that one of the great deceptions of Antichrist is that he is unrecognizable. Perhaps everybody will be looking for one man and not see that he’s many.

On the one hand, Our Lord tells us, “For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, nor will be” (Matthew 24:21, Mark 13:19).

We have seen the last Catholic nations dissolved after having great power and glory. We have seen the Church practically wiped off the face of the earth after having the Real Presence of Our Lord on every altar around the world. The fear of the Lord is practically absent in every man except the elect reduced down to a remnant. The loss of grace is immense. Jesus tells us, “But he that shall persevere to the end, he shall be saved” (Matt. 24:13). He was only speaking to those who have the Faith and to maintain it through the tribulation.

On the other hand, Our Lord tells us, “38 For, as in the days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, even till that day in which Noe entered into the ark, 39 And they did not understand until the flood came and swept them all away; even so will be the coming of the Son of Man”(Matthew 24:38-39).

“26 And as it came to pass in the days of Noe, even so will it be in the days of the Son of Man. 27 They were eating and drinking, they were marrying and giving in marriage, until the day when Noe entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all. 28 Likewise, as it came to pass in the days of Lot: they were eating and drinking, they were buying and selling, they were planting and building; 29 but on the day that Lot went out from Sodom, it rained fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed them all. 30 In the same wise will it be on the day that the Son of Man is revealed” (Luke 17: 26-30).

It appears that the tribulation will only be felt by the faithful Catholics. The rest of the world won’t notice a thing. It will continue down the path of destruction to the fire of hell.

If it’s true that Antichrist is a collective of men, then the world won’t see him, and he will be missed.

Two of the last three things have come to pass, the gospel has been preached to every nation and the great falling away from the Faith is now. Who and where is Antichrist?

St. Paul warned, “That you be not easily moved from your sense, nor be terrified, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by epistle, as sent from us, as if the day of the Lord were at hand. Let no man deceive you by any means, for unless there come a revolt first, and the man of sin be revealed” (II Thess. 2:2-3). Does this mean when the revolt and Antichrist is revealed, we should be terrified as if the day of the Lord were at hand? Should we even know when such a time comes?

Jesus told us, 29. And immediately after the tribulation of those days, the sun shall be darkened and the moon shall not give her light and the stars shall fall from heaven and the powers of heaven shall be moved. 30. And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven. And then shall all tribes of the earth mourn: and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with much power and majesty” (Matt. 24:29-30). “But when these things begin to come to pass, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is at hand” (Luke 21:28).

According to the previous verses, the tribulation contains the great apostasy and Antichrist’s deception of the world. If we aren’t living during this tribulation now, then how much worse can it be in light of Matt. 24:38-39 and Luke 17:26-30 and what difference would some future Antichrist really make?

For further reading on the subject which includes the identity of the false prophet, the two witnesses, the abomination of desolation, etc., see my book: The Key to the Apocalypse (lulu.com).

 

 

Footnotes:

[1] When defining the Immaculate Conception, Pope Pius IX in Ineffabilis Deus declared: Hence, if anyone shall dare — which God forbid! — to think otherwise than as has been defined by us, let him know and understand that he is condemned by his own judgment; that he has suffered shipwreck in the faith; that he has separated from the unity of the Church; and that, furthermore, by his own action he incurs the penalties established by law if he should are to express in words or writing or by any other outward means the errors he think in his heart.

Pope Pius IX makes the distinction of thinking and publicly expressing what he thinks. Thinking otherwise is occult until manifesting his thinking outwardly. Notice that thinking otherwise and he has separated from the unity of the Church. This is clearly talking about occult heresy, because he goes on with penalties for those who manifest their thinking.

Several respected theologians held that occult heretics are not members of the Church.  

[2] 5. They are of the world, &c. For heretics are not of God but of the world, because they love the riches, honours, and pleasures of the world. Whence worldly people, who care only for what is of the world, gladly hear them. “A heretic,” says S. Augustine (de util. credendi), “is he who for the sake of some temporal advantage, but especially of glory, and the pre-eminence which it gives, either brings forth or follows new and false opinions.” “All heretics,” says Tertullian, “are puffed up, all make profession of science.” “What heretic,” says S. Jerome, “does not swell with pride?” And again, S. Augustine says, “One mother, pride, hath brought forth all heresies, even as our own mother, the Catholic Church, all faithful Christians dispersed throughout the world.” Cornelius À Lapide – The Great Biblical Commentary – I John 4:5

[3] Satan, Antichrist, and ST. MICHAEL | Speray’s Catholicism in a Nutshell (wordpress.com)

[4] Augustine speculated that Antichrist was a mass of men or the Roman Empire by stating, “some think” and “others think.” CHURCH FATHERS: City of God, Book XX (St. Augustine) (newadvent.org)

[5] “This Eutyches must be judged to be extremely destitute of this mystery of the faith. Neither the humility of the mortal life nor the glory of the resurrection has made him recognise our nature in the only-begotten of God. Nor has even the statement of the blessed apostle and evangelist John put fear into him: Every spirit which confesses that Jesus Christ came in the flesh is from God, and every spirit which puts Jesus asunder is not from God, and this is Antichrist.” The Council of Chalcedon – 451 A.D. – Papal Encyclicals

[6] Dignitatis Humanae of Vatican 2 declared: “The council further declares that the right to religious freedom has its foundation in the very dignity of the human person as this dignity is known through the revealed word of God and by reason itself. (2) This right of the human person to religious freedom is to be recognized in the constitutional law whereby society is governed and thus it is to become a civil right.” This religious freedom included, “In addition, religious communities are entitled to teach and give witness to their faith publicly in speech and writing without hindrance.” (DH #4) Vatican 2 is clear that religious liberty is a human right that not even the Church can prohibit. It declared that this “right” be made into constitutional law. The results were dissolving the last Catholic Nations and Catholic Constitutions around the world. The Catholic State is being declared by the Second Vatican Council as a violation of the rights of man. Countries, such as Spain and Colombia, were forced to give up their Catholic constitutions and follow this document.

Read Full Post »

It is therefore a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from sins (II Maccabees 12:46).

This verse tells us that sins can be forgiven after death by the intercession of prayers of those who still live.

St. Paul through the Holy Ghost tells us in the Apocalypse the defiled will not enter Heaven. [1] Yet, all good men are defiled in someway. There may be an attachment to sin even through ignorance and the punishment due to forgiven mortal sin. Men don’t always repair and make restitutions for their sins, which is a type of defilement. Therefore, a place of purgation and purification must exist in order that God’s justice and mercy apply perfectly and completely. How this works is explained in St. Paul’s Letter to the Corinthians.

9 For we are God’s coadjutors: you are God’s husbandry; you are God’s building.

10 According to the grace of God that is given to me, as a wise architect, I have laid the foundation; and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. 11 For other foundation no man can lay, but that which is laid; which is Christ Jesus. 12 Now if any man build upon this foundation, gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble: 13 Every man’s work shall be manifest; for the day of the Lord shall declare it, because it shall be revealed in fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work, of what sort it is. 14 If any man’s work abide, which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. 15 If any man’s work burn, he shall suffer loss; but he himself shall be saved, yet so as by fire. 16 Know you not, that you are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?

17 But if any man violate the temple of God, him shall God destroy. For the temple of God is holy, which you are (I Cor. 3:9-17).

The “day of the Lord” is Judgment Day. The temple is man. Gold, silver, and precious stones represents good works deserving of a reward (Heaven). Wood, hay, and stubble represents venial sins, which gets burned up (Purgatory). Violating the temple is mortal sin and those that do so will be destroyed (Hell).

Mortal sins are sins unto death, and venial sins are sins not unto death (First John 5:16-17). For instance, in Matthew 5:19, Jesus states that men can commit certain sins and even teach others to commit that sin but would be called least in the Kingdom of Heaven. Other sins however, Jesus says would cause men liable to hell fire. Therefore, different types of sins have different types of punishment and this is what St. Paul describes.

Lastly, Jesus implicitely tells that Purgatory exists:

“And whosoever shall speak a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but he that shall speak against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, nor in the world to come (Matt. 12:32).”

Fr. Leo Haydock writes in his Bible commentary that St. Augustine (De Civ. 1.xxi. c. 13) and Pope St. Gregory the Great (Dial. Iv, c. 39) understood the passage to refer to Purgatory. St. Augustine said this passage would not be true, if some sins were not forgiven in the world to come; and St. Gregory says, we are to believe from these words in the existence of the fire of purgatory, to expiate our smaller offenses, before the day of judgment. St. Isidore and Ven. Bede say the same. St. Bernard, speaking of heretics, says they do not believe in purgatory; let them then inquire of our Savior, what he meant by these words.” [2]

Fr. Cornelius à Lapide S.J. writes in his commentary, “S. Aug. (21 Civit. 24), S. Greg. (4 dialog. 39), Isidore, Bede, S. Bern., and others, quoted by Bellarmine (Lib. 2. de Purgat. sec. 4), prove from this passage, that there is a Purgatory after this life. For it would be unmeaning to say, shall not be forgiven nor in the world to come, if there were no remission of sins in the world to come. Thus a person would speak vainly who said, I will never marry a wife, neither in this world, nor in the world to come, since no wife can be married in the world to come. Mark adds, and gives greater force to the saying: but shall be guilty of eternal damnation. Moreover mortal sins are expiated in Purgatory, so far only as pertains to their punishment, but venial sins as regards both fault and punishment.” [3]

In the past, I’ve answered certain objections to Purgatory, [4] but the bottom line is that the Church is the pillar and ground for the truth (I Tim. 3:15) and the Church from its beginning has believed in Purgatory. We clearly see it in the Holy Bible. According to Apostolic traditions, liturgies were offered for the poor souls in Purgatory. We also see prayers offered for the dead in the catacombs.

The 3rd century heretics known as the Apostolici (a sect of Encratites) denied Purgatory, but could not have done so if the universal belief didn’t already exist.

Later heretics such as the Cathars (Waldenses) of the 12th century denied the existence of Purgatory. Some of the Eastern Orthodox (Greek and Russian) denied it after the “Orthodox Confession of Petrus Mogilas” was drawn up around 1640 AD. The Protestants denied it in the 16th century. The fact that they all denied Purgatory demonstrates that it existed before they existed.

The 2nd Council of Lyons (1274), Pope Benedict XII, in the dogmatic constitution “Benedietus Deus” (1336), Council of Florence (1439), and the Council of Trent (1563) defined Purgatory from a universal belief to a dogma of the Catholic Faith. [5]

God has spoken and His Church, the Pillar and Ground for the truth has spoken. Purgatory is real!

 

Footnotes:

[1] There shall not enter into it any thing defiled, or that worketh abomination or maketh a lie, but they that are written in the book of life of the Lamb (Apoc. 21:27).

[2] The Haydock Bible

[3] CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: Cornelius Cornelii a Lapide (newadvent.org)

[4] OBJECTIONS TO PURGATORY ANSWERED IN A NUTSHELL

[5] Benedictus Deus (On the Beatific Vision of God) | EWTN

~The Council of Trent – Session 25~

 

Read Full Post »

The Road to Jerusalem by Gustave Doré, 1877

St. Paul taught, “Let no man deceive you by any means, for unless there come a revolt first, and the man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition Who opposeth, and is lifted up above all that is called God, or that is worshipped, so that he sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself as if he were God.  Remember you not, that when I was yet with you, I told you these things? And now you know what withholdeth, that he may be revealed in his time. For the mystery of iniquity already worketh; only that he who now holdeth, do hold, until he be taken out of the way. And then that wicked one shall be revealed whom the Lord Jesus shall kill with the spirit of his mouth; and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming, him Whose coming is according to the working of Satan, in all power, and signs, and lying wonders, And in all seduction of iniquity to them that perish; because they receive not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. Therefore God shall send them the operation of error, to believe lying: That all may be judged who have not believed the truth, but have consented to iniquity.” (II Thess. 2:3-11)

The wicked one is Antichrist. Different interpretations have been offered as to whom or what holds back the coming of Antichrist, the “son of perdition.” Some Church fathers believed it was the grace of the Spirit, while others say it was the Roman Empire. [1] Card. Manning presented a case that it’s the pope. [2] However, I’ll present another opinion.

Antichrist’s power comes from Satan according to St. John, “And the beast, which I saw, was like to a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion. And the dragon gave him his own strength, and great power…  And they adored the dragon, which gave power to the beast: and they adored the beast, saying: Who is like to the beast? and who shall be able to fight with him?” (Ap. 13:2, 4)

The Beast is Antichrist. There’s another beast, called the “False Prophet.” He also has the same power as Antichrist: “And I saw another beast coming up out of the earth, and he had two horns, like a lamb, and he spoke as a dragon. And he executed all the power of the former beast in his sight; and he caused the earth, and them that dwell therein, to adore the first beast, whose wound to death was healed.” (Ap. 13: 11-12)

However, before the devil can give power to Antichrist and False Prophet, he must be let loose from the abyss. Again, St. John, “And I saw an angel coming down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit, and a great chain in his hand. And he laid hold on the dragon the old serpent, which is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years. And he cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should no more seduce the nations, till the thousand years be finished. And after that, he must be loosed a little time…And when the thousand years shall be finished, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, and shall go forth, and seduce the nations, which are over the four quarters of the earth, Gog, and Magog, and shall gather them together to battle, the number of whom is as the sand of the sea.” (Ap. 20:1-3, 7)

A thousand years is not to be taken as a literal thousand years since apocalyptic language uses numbers symbolically. In these verses, the thousand years specifically refers to the time of Christ until the reign of Antichrist. St. John doesn’t tell us who the angel is that came down from heaven. However, he does mention St. Michael in Ap. 12:7 who with his angels fight Satan and his angels.

It’s generally held that St. John wrote the Apocalypse around 96 AD about 50 years after St. Paul’s letters to the Thessalonians. I submit that Ap. 20:1-7 and II Thess. 2:6-7 are referring to the same event. Satan is let loose and seduces the nations with Antichrist and False Prophet to whom he gives power.

St. Paul implies that the Thessalonians know who holds back the coming of Antichrist and perhaps, Paul told them. It would seem improbable that the Thessalonians would have a developed understanding of the papacy to conclude that Peter [or his successors] is the one holding back the coming of Antichrist.

Pope Leo XIII seems to suggest that it’s St. Michael. His composition of the Prayer to St. Michael is one of the most fascinating and prophetic events in modern era.

On September 25, 1888, following his morning Mass, Pope Leo XIII fell into a trance leaving those in attendance thinking that he had just died. After coming to, Leo immediately went into his private chambers and composed the prayer to St. Michael. Afterwards, the Pope described what he had seen: a terrifying Vision of Christ and Satan speaking to each other over the tabernacle. The devil told Jesus, “I could destroy the Church and convert it to myself if I had more time and power over those who will give themselves to my service.” Christ asked Satan, “How much time will you need?” Satan said, “75 years.” Our Lord, said, “So be it, you will have the time and power” and the vision vanished.

From the vision, it sounds like Satan was let loose and Pope Leo XIII’s prayer to St. Michael confirms it. The relevant part of the prayer reads:

“That cruel, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil or Satan, who seduces the whole world, was cast into the abyss with his angels. [Chained] Behold, this primeval enemy and slayer of men has taken courage.  Transformed into an angel of light, he wanders about with all the multitude of wicked spirits, invading the earth in order to blot out the name of God and of his Christ, to seize upon, slay and cast into eternal perdition souls destined for the crown of eternal glory.  This wicked dragon pours out, as a most impure flood, the venom of his malice on men of depraved mind and corrupt heart, the spirit of lying, of impiety, of blasphemy, and the pestilent breath of impurity, and of every vice and iniquity.” [Satan has been loose for a time.] [3]

Pope Leo XIII commanded that his Prayer to St. Michael the Archangel to be recited after all Low Masses. The full prayer can be read in footnote [4].

As we see from the prayer, Pope Leo XIII implies that it’s St. Michael who withholds the devil, which keeps Antichrist from coming. St. Michael is the angel St. John sees “coming down from heaven” and laying hold of the “dragon the old serpent, which is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years.” St. Michael is commanded by Our Lord to let the devil loose and we are beseeching Our Lord and St. Michael to “again make him captive in the abyss, that he may no longer seduce the nations.”

This means that Antichrist and the False Prophet have probably manifested and are in the world.

Check out my book “The Key to the Apocalypse”

and find out who I believe the Antichrist and False Prophet are.

In the meantime, develop a devotion to St. Michael. Buy a St. Michael Combat Chaplet and learn to pray it. Attached are promises of St. Michael to those who pray the chaplet. [5]

His Holiness, Pius IX., by a decree of the S. Congr. of Rites, Aug. 8, 1851, granted to all the faithful, every time that, with at least a contrite heart and devotion, they shall say this chaplet:

An indulgence of seven years and seven quarantines.

An indulgence of one hundred days indulgence, ever day, to any one who shall carry this chaplet about him, or kiss the medal, representing the holy angels, appended to it.

A plenary indulgence, once a month, to all who shall say this chaplet every day, on any day when, being truly penitent, after confession and communion, they shall pray especially for the triumph of holy Mother Church, and for the welfare of the Sovereign Pontiff.

A plenary indulgence, on the conditions given above, on: The feast of the Apparition of St. Michael, May 8.

The dedication of St. Michael, September 29.

St. Gabriel the archangel, March 18.

St. Raphael the archangel, October 24.

Holy guardian angels, October 2.

To gain these indulgences, a chaplet must be used, consisting of the Our Father, nine times, with the Hail Mary three times after each Our Father, and the Our Father four times at the end, saying at the same time, in order, the corresponding salutations, with the antiphon, versicle and prayer, at the end. These chaplets by order of His Holiness, Pius IX., by rescript of the S. Congr. of Indulgences, Feb 4, 1877, must be blessed by a priest who has from the Holy See the general faculty of blessing beads, medals, etc. [6]

 

Footnotes

[1] http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/23054.htm

[2] https://novusordowatch.org/2015/04/the-pope-and-the-antichrist/

[3] The Raccolta, 1930, Benzinger Bros., pp. 314-315.

[4] O Glorious Archangel St. Michael, Prince of the heavenly host, be our defense in the terrible warfare which we carry on against Principalities and Powers, against the rulers of this world of darkness, spirits of evil.  Come to the aid of man, whom God created immortal, made in his own image and likeness, and redeemed at a great price from the tyranny of the devil.

Fight this day the battle of the Lord, together with the holy angels, as already thou hast fought the leader of the proud angels, Lucifer, and his apostate host, who were powerless to resist thee, nor was there place for them any longer in Heaven.

That cruel, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil or Satan, who seduces the whole world, was cast into the abyss with his angels.  Behold, this primeval enemy and slayer of men has taken courage.  Transformed into an angel of light, he wanders about with all the multitude of wicked spirits, invading the earth in order to blot out the name of God and of his Christ, to seize upon, slay and cast into eternal perdition souls destined for the crown of eternal glory.  This wicked dragon pours out, as a most impure flood, the venom of his malice on men of depraved mind and corrupt heart, the spirit of lying, of impiety, of blasphemy, and the pestilent breath of impurity, and of every vice and iniquity.

These most crafty enemies have filled and inebriated with gall and bitterness the Church, the spouse of the immaculate Lamb, and have laid impious hands on her most sacred possessions.  In the Holy Place itself, where has been set up the See of the most holy Peter and the Chair of Truth for the light of the world, they have raised the throne of their abominable impiety, with the iniquitous design that when the Pastor has been struck, the sheep may be scattered.

Arise then, O invincible Prince, bring help against the attacks of the lost spirits to the people of God, and give them the victory.  They venerate thee as their protector and Patron; in thee holy Church glories as her defense against the malicious power of hell; to thee has God entrusted the souls of men to be established in heavenly beatitude.  Oh, pray to the God of peace that He may put Satan under our feet, so far conquered that he may no longer be able to hold men in captivity and harm the Church.  Offer our prayers in the sight of the Most High, so that they may quickly conciliate the mercies of the Lord; and beating down the dragon, the ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, do thou again make him captive in the abyss, that he may no longer seduce the nations.  Amen

Behold the Cross of the Lord; be scattered ye hostile powers.

The Lion of the tribe of Judah has conquered, the root of David.

Let thy mercies be upon us, O Lord.

As we have hoped in thee.

O Lord, hear my prayer.

And let my cry come unto thee.

Let us pray.

O God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, we call upon thy holy name, and as suppliants we implore thy clemency, that by the intercession of Mary, ever Virgin immaculate and our Mother, and of the glorious Archangel St. Michael, thou wouldst deign to help us against Satan and all other unclean spirits, who wander about the world for the injury of the human race and the ruin of souls.  Amen.

[5] The Chaplet of St. Michael

O God, come to my assistance. O Lord, make haste to help me. Gloria Patri…

On the first bead pray a Pater Noster, and on the next 3 beads pray Ave’s. Repeat after each of the following prayers.

  1. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Seraphim may the Lord make us worthy to burn with the fire of perfect charity, Amen!
  2. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Cherubim may the Lord grant us the grace to leave the ways of wickedness to run in the paths of Christian perfection, Amen!
  3. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Thrones may the Lord infuse into our hearts a true and sincere spirit of humility, Amen!
  4. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Dominations may the Lord give us grace to govern our senses and subdue our unruly passions, Amen!
  5. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Virtues may the Lord preserve us from evil and suffer us not to fall into temptation, Amen!
  6. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Powers may the Lord vouchsafe to protect our souls against the snares and temptations of the devil, Amen!
  7. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Principalities may God fill our souls with a true spirit of obedience, Amen!
  8. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Archangels may the Lord give us perseverance in faith and in all good works in order that we gain the glory of Paradise, Amen!
  9. By the intercession of St. Michael and the celestial Choir of Angels may the Lord grant us to be protected by them in this mortal life and conducted hereafter to eternal glory, Amen!

O glorious prince, St. Michael, chief and commander of the heavenly hosts, guardian of souls, vanquisher of rebel spirits, servant in the house of the Divine King and our admirable conductor, you who dost shine with excellence and superhuman virtue vouchsafe to deliver us from all evil, who turn to Thee with confidence and enable us by Thy gracious protection to serve God more and more faithfully every day.

Pray for us, O glorious St. Michael, Prince of the Church of Jesus Christ, that we may be made worthy of His promises.

Almighty and Everlasting God, Who, by a prodigy of goodness and a merciful desire for the salvation of all men, has appointed the most glorious Archangel St. Michael, Prince of Thy Church, make us worthy, we beseech Thee, to be delivered from all our enemies, that none of them may harass us at the hour of death, but that we may be conducted by him into the august presence of Thy Divine Majesty. This we beg through the merits of Jesus Christ Our Lord, Amen!

The Chaplet was given to the Portuguese Carmelite nun, Antonia d’Astonac, by St. Michael through a vision in 1751. He told Antonia to honor him by nine salutations to the nine Choirs of Angels. St. Michael promised that whoever practices this devotion in his honor would have, when approaching Holy Communion, an escort of nine angels chosen from each of the nine Choirs. In addition, for those who would recite the Chaplet daily, he promised his continual assistance and that of all the holy angels during life and after death deliverance from purgatory for themselves and their relations.

[6] The New Raccolta,

https://books.google.com/books?id=ZLgQAAAAIAAJ&pg=PA363&lpg=PA363&dq=Pope+Pius+IX.,+Aug.+8+1851,+granted+to+all+those+who+shall+say+this+chaplet&source=bl&ots=-WDSqySviZ&sig=ACfU3U0ci9hR1vfEGVtUFrGbl6Wjr0Yo-A&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwjbmLjXtJPmAhWrd98KHc3gASkQ6AEwAHoECAkQAQ#v=onepage&q=Pope%20Pius%20IX.%2C%20Aug.%208%201851%2C%20granted%20to%20all%20those%20who%20shall%20say%20this%20chaplet&f=false

Read Full Post »

The Eastern Orthodox and Protestant religions reject papal primacy. In an attempt to discredit the historicity of papal primacy, they misrepresent the Fathers and Saints on the issues leaving out the context, full meaning, and full teaching of each authority. This study will answer, explain, and expound on certain quotes used against papal primacy, plus add quotes to prove papal primacy. The point of this study is to demonstrate how to answer cherry-picked quotes taken out of context and to prove that papal primacy was indeed recognized by the early Church.

One ex-Catholic, now Eastern Orthodox, posted the following quotes with the conclusion reading, “The Patristic witness on this point is so clear we need add nothing more to it –the point is settled – St. Peter did not receive any greater dignity or authority than the other Apostles. Already, the fundamental premise of Roman Catholicism is shaken and the edifice totters –if Peter did not have superior authority, Rome cannot have received it from him either.”

The quotes are in red and I will follow with the Catholic answer, which, by the way, has already been answered many times by many other Catholics.

St. Ambrose of Milan: “He (St. Peter), then, who before was silent, to teach us that we ought not to repeat the words of the impious, this one, I say, when he heard, ‘But who do you say I am,’ immediately, not unmindful of his station, exercised his primacy, that is, the primacy of confession, not of honor; the primacy of belief, not of rank. This, then, is Peter, who has replied for the rest of the Apostles; rather, before the rest of men….” (Saint Ambrose, The Sacrament of the Incarnation of Our Lord, IV.32-V.34.)

Every Catholic agrees with St. Ambrose because Peter was not yet pope when he made his confession. Peter wasn’t acting pope until Pentecost.

St. Ambrose fully believed that Peter became the head and foundation of the whole Church. He wrote: “[Christ] made answer: ‘You are Peter, and upon this rock will I build my Church . . .’ Could he not, then, strengthen the faith of the man to whom, acting on his own authority, he gave the kingdom, whom he called the rock, thereby declaring him to be the foundation of the Church [Matt. 16:18]?” (The Faith, 379 A.D.)

“They [the Novatian heretics] have not the succession of Peter, who hold not the chair of Peter, which they rend by wicked schism; and this, too, they do, wickedly denying that sins can be forgiven (by the sacrament of confession) even in the Church, whereas it was said to Peter:  ‘I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of Heaven, and whatsoever thou shalt bind on Earth, shall be bound in Heaven, and whatsoever thou shall loose on Earth shall be loosed in Heaven.'”  (On Penance, 388 A.D.)

“It is to Peter that He says: ‘You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My Church’ (Matthew 16:18). Where Peter is, there is the Church. And where the Church, no death is there, but life eternal.” (Commentary on Twelve Psalms of David, 389 A.D.)

St. Cyprian of Carthage: “To all the apostles, after His resurrection, He gives an equal power…the other Apostles also were what Peter was, endued with an equal fellowship both of honor and power…”(On the Unity of the Catholic Church, 4.)

​The above quote is incomplete. St. Cyprian says, “It is on one man that He builds the Church; and although He assigns a like power to all the Apostles after His resurrection…nevertheless, in order that unity might be clearly shown, He established by his own authority a source for that unity, which takes its beginning from one man alone. Indeed, the other Apostles were that also which Peter was, being endowed with an equal portion of dignity and power; but the origin is ground in unity, so that it may be made clear there is but one Church of Christ. …If someone does not hold fast to this unity of the Church, can he imagine that he still holds the faith? If he resists and withstands the Church, can he still be confident that he is in the Church…? Most especially must we bishops, who exercise authority in the Church, hold firmly and insist upon this unity, whereby we may demonstrate also that the episcopate itself is one and undivided. Let no one mislead the brotherhood with a lie, let no one corrupt the faith by a faithless perversion of the truth. The episcopate is one, of which each bishop holds his part within the undivided structure.”

In no way does St. Cyprian deny the papacy. Each and every Apostle had apostolic authority over the whole Church. They had jurisdiction over the Church as Peter, which is the equal portion of dignity and power that’s being referred to. The difference with Peter is that he had supreme authority, the final say so to speak, as was demonstrated at the Council of Jerusalem. Peter’s successors maintained full apostolic authority and jurisdiction, hence, the “Apostolic See.” The other sees do not possess jurisdiction over the whole Church.

Another distinction is the power of Orders and the power of Office. A bishop can have one without the other. A layman can possess the jurisdiction of the office of bishop as a bishop-elect but he would not have the power of orders and a consecrated bishop can have the power of orders but not the jurisdiction of an office.

As far as the power of Orders is concerned, all bishops have the same power. The power of the office concerns jurisdiction. The pope has full and supreme jurisdiction. All bishops are subject to the pope.

If we take a look at St. Cyprian’s original letter, we see that Peter’s office carries a certain type of dignity and power unlike any other office in the Church:

“The Lord says to Peter: ‘I say to you,’ he says, ‘that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of hell will not overcome it. And to you I will give the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever things you bind on earth shall be bound also in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth, they shall be loosed also in heaven’… On him he builds the Church, and to him he gives the command to feed the sheep, and although he assigns a like power to all the apostles, yet he founded a single chair, and he established by his own authority a source and an intrinsic reason for that unity. Indeed, the others were also what Peter was; but a primacy is given to Peter, whereby it is made clear that there is but one Church and one chair. So too, all are shepherds, and the flock is shown to be one, fed by all the apostles in single-minded accord. If someone does not hold fast to this unity of Peter, can he imagine that he still holds the faith? If he deserts the chair of Peter upon whom the Church was built, can he still be confident that he is in the Church?” (The Unity of the Catholic Church, first edition 251 AD.)

St. Cyprian never rejected his original letter.

St. Isidore of Seville: “The other Apostles were made equal with Peter in a fellowship of dignity and power.”(De Ecclesiasticus, II.5, M.P.L., Vol. 83, Col. 781-782.)

Again, each Apostle had the same jurisdiction over the Church as Peter, which is the equal portion of dignity and power that’s being referred to. However, the context of St. Isidore’s writing was about the episcopacy or the power of orders. The other Apostles were made equal in fellowship of dignity and power as Peter as far as being a bishop is concerned. The papal office is another and distinct office in the Church and it can be occupied by a mere layman such as Pope Hadrian V who was never even a priest. St. Isidore wasn’t referring to Peter’s Chair as Pope but rather his rank as bishop.

We can easily prove that St. Isidore recognized papal primacy. His older brother St. Leander was first made Bishop of Seville. He was a close friend of Pope St. Gregory the Great, who sent him the pallium.

The Catholic encyclopedia explains what the pallium is and what it symbolizes http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11427a.htm

Pope St. Gregory used his authority over other bishops and councils. It was clear that he was the head of the Church. His letters also indicate his authority as head of the Church.

It’s true that Pope St. Gregory rejected the title “universal bishop” in the sense that it necessarily meant there are no other bishops. He explained this point in Book 9, Letter 68.

In this very letter, Pope St. Gregory was using his supreme authority as pope to condemn the Bishop of Constantinople.

In Book 3, Letter 30, Pope St. Gregory declares, “Inasmuch as it is manifest that the Apostolic See is, by the ordering of God, set over all Churches, there is, among our manifold cares, special demand for our attention, when our decision is awaited with a view to the consecration of a bishop.  . . . you are to cause him to be consecrated by his own bishops, as ancient usage requires, with the assent of our authority, and the help of the Lord; to the end that through the observance of such custom both the Apostolic See may retain the power belonging to it, and at the same time may not diminish the rights which it has conceded to others.”

In Book 9, Letter 12, Pope St. Gregory declared, “For as to what they say about the Church of Constantinople, who can doubt that it is subject to the Apostolic See, as both the most pious lord the emperor and our brother the bishop of that city continually acknowledge?”

If any bishop denied papal primacy, Pope St. Gregory would have set him straight.

When St. Leander died, his brother St. Isidore became Bishop of Seville. Again, St. Gregory the Great showed his apostolic authority by sending him the pallium, which St. Isidore accepted.

St. Isidore never denied papal primacy. In fact, he recognized it by his actions. Not only that, but all of St. Isidore’s writings are promoted by the popes themselves.

St. Bede: “Although it may seem that this power of loosing and binding was given by the Lord only to Peter, we must nevertheless know without any doubt that it was given to the other Apostles, as Christ Himself testified when, after the triumph of His Passion and Resurrection, He appeared to them and breathed upon them, and said to them all, ‘Receive ye the Holy Spirit: if ye forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven to them; if ye retain the sins of any, they are retained [Jn. 20:22, 23].

​St. Bede’s interpretation of Matt. 16:19 is a different perspective from his contemporaries, but it doesn’t deny Peter’s primacy in authority. Bede is interpreting the binding and loosing in Matt. 16 with the same binding and loosing in Jn. 20, which is about binding and loosing of sins. All priests have the same power as bishops in binding and loosing of sins. However, Bede didn’t hold that priests and bishops have the same authority. He writes, “In my nineteenth year I was admitted to the diaconate, in my thirtieth to the priest, both by the hands of the most reverend Bishop John (St. John of Beverley), and at the bidding of Abbot Ceolfrid.” Bishops ordain priests and consecrate bishops but priests don’t have the power to do either. Thus they have different powers. St. Bede is not denying the authority of Peter as the head of the Church.

St. Cyril of Alexandria: “One therefore is Christ both Son and Lord, not as if a man had attained only such a conjunction with God as consists in a unity of dignity alone or of authority. For it is not equality of dignity which unites natures; for then Peter and John, who were of equal dignity with each other, being both Apostles and holy disciples would have been one, and yet the two are not one….”(St. Cyril, 2nd Epistle to Nestorius.)

St. Cyril is making a point. He’s not denying Peter’s authority as pope. In fact, he made this statement at the Council of Ephesus in 431 AD, after he appealed to Pope St. Celestine I to settle the matter against Nestorius, the Patriarch of Constantinople. The result was the Third Ecumenical Council at Ephesus in 431 AD, which condemned Nestorius. In the Acts of the Council, session 3, it’s declared:

“Philip the presbyter and legate of the Apostolic See said: ‘There is no doubt, and in fact it has been known in all ages, that the holy and most blessed Peter, prince and head of the apostles, pillar of the faith, and foundation of the Catholic Church, received the keys of the kingdom from our Lord Jesus Christ, the Savior and Redeemer of the human race, and that to him was given the power of loosing and binding sins: who down even to today and forever both lives and judges in his successors. The holy and most blessed pope Celestine, according to due order, is his successor and holds his place, and us he sent to supply his place in this holy synod.’”

The great council of the East witnesses to the Catholic dogma that Peter and his successors are head of the apostles, pillar of the faith, and foundation of the Catholic Church.”

St. Cyril, Bishop of Jerusalem (d. 386) is another Eastern Father who tells us that only Peter has the keys and is the chief of the apostles:

[Simon Magus] so deceived the city of Rome that Claudius erected a statue of him. . . . While the error was extending itself, Peter and Paul arrived, a noble pair and the rulers of the Church, and they set the error aright. . . . They launched the weapon of their like-mindedness in prayer against the Magus, and struck him down to earth. It was marvelous enough, and yet no marvel at all, for Peter was there—he that carries about the keys of heaven. …In the power of the same Holy Spirit, Peter, both the chief of the apostles and the keeper of the keys of the kingdom of heaven, in the name of Christ healed Aeneas the paralytic at Lydda, which is now called Diospolis; and at Joppa he raised the beneficent Tabitha from the dead.” (Catechetical Lectures [350 AD] 6:14 and 17:27).

St. John Chrysostom, according the Eastern Orthodox, “has not recognized in the Church any dignity superior to the apostolate in general.”

“Of all spiritual magistratures,” he says, “the greatest is the apostolate. How do we know this? Because the apostle precedes all others. As the consul is the first of civil magistrates, so is the apostle the first of spiritual magistrates. St. Paul himself, when he enumerates these dignities, places at their head the prerogatives of the apostolate. What does he say? ‘And God has set some in the church; first, apostles; secondarily, prophets; thirdly, teachers.’ Do you observe the summit of these dignities? Do you mark that the apostle is at the apex of the hierarchy–no one before, none above him. For he says: ‘First, apostles.’ And not only is the apostolate the first of all dignities, but also the root and foundation thereof.” (Homily upon the Utility of Reading Holy Scripture; cited in Abbe Guettee, The Papacy.)

[NOTE: Since being an Apostle is the highest rulership in the church, the root and foundation, then there is no office for St. Peter to have higher than the other Apostles –and note that St. Paul says, God set some, that is, a plural number, in the church, first apostles –again a plural number, yet a Papal Petrine primacy demands that the highest rank be singular.]

The argument fails to make proper distinctions. St. John Chrysostom is commenting on I Cor. 12:28-30, which reads,

“And God indeed hath set some in the church; first apostles, secondly prophets, thirdly doctors: after that miracles: then the graces of healings, helps, governments, kinds of tongues, interpretations of speeches. 29. Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all doctors? 30. Are all workers of miracles? Have all the grace of healing?”

The Bible is giving a general outline of authority and other positions in the Church. St. John Chrysostom is pointing to the fact that the Apostles are higher than all the other parts of the Church. The Apostles are also bishops but the other bishops don’t have the jurisdiction of the Apostles. Again, some bishops have more authority than other bishops because of the power of an office. St. John Chyrsostom is not dealing with the papal office which is about a specific office among the Apostles. He explains Peter’s Office in other writings. For instance,

“Peter, that head of the Apostles, the first in the Church, the friend of Christ, who received the revelation not from man but from the Father….this Peter, and when I say Peter, I mean the unbroken Rock, the unshaken foundation, the great apostle, the first of the disciples, the first called, the first to obey.” (De Eleemos III, 4, vol II, 298[300], taken from Dom John Chapman)

This is one of many teachings from St. John Chrysostom on papal primacy. To argue that this great saint didn’t recognize papal primacy is absurd.

Whenever we see a quote from a Father or saint about Peter’s relationship with others, pay attention to the context and in what sense he’s referring to.

The following additional quotes support papal primacy.

St. Jerome:

“Not long afterwards the illustrious Anastasius succeeded to the Pontificate. Rome did not merit to possess him long, lest the world’s head should be severed under such a bishop [when Alaric took Rome, AD 410]. Nay, he was taken away, lest he should essay by his prayers to bend the sentence once decided, as the Lord said to Jeremias: ‘Pray not for this people.’ … You say, what has this to do with the illustrious Marcella? She was the cause of the heretic’s condemnation, by producing witnesses’…” (Ep 127, c. x, 958[1093] taken from Dom John Chapman’s Studies on the Early Papacy and originally from the “Dublin Review” (January 1898). Dom John Chapman OSB (25 April 1865 – 7 November 1933)

St. Theodore the Studite to Pope St. Leo III:

“To the most holy and great father of fathers, to our lord Leo, apostolic pope, Theodore, the most humble priest and abbot of the Studion….

Since it is to the great Peter that Christ our God gave the keys of the kingdom of heaven and entrusted the dignity of chief of the flock , it is to Peter, that is to say, his successor, that one ought to submit every innovation which is made in the Catholic Church by those who turn aside from the truth. That is what we humble and lowly monks have learnt from the ancient fathers. Therefore, a new teaching having arisen recently in the midst of our Church here, we believed we ought, first through the medium of one of our fathers, the most holy archimandrite Ephiphanius, and then by this simple letter, to submit it to the angel of your supreme beatitude. There has been held, o Ruler divine of all rulers, a synod of prevaricators, as says the prophet Jeremiah, a council of adulterers. These men have not been content to conspire in favor of the priest who blessed the adulterous marriage and to receive him into communion, but, to merit the name of perfect heretic, have excommunicated in a second synod all those who do not cleave to their error, or rather the Church catholic herself…I borrow now the cry of the coryphaeus of the Apostles, calling Christ to his succor when the waves of the sea were risen up, and I say to your blessedness who are the Representative of Christ, ‘O first shepherd of the Church which is under heaven’, save us now, we perish. Imitate the Christ your master, stretch out your hand to your Church as he stretched out his hand to Peter. Peter began to sink in the waves, while our Church is still once more submerged in the depths of heresy. Emulate, we beg you, the great Pope whose name you bear, and just as he on the appearance of the Eutychian heresy, stood erect spiritually as a lion with his dogmatic letters, so in your turn (I dare to say it because of your name) roar divinely, or rather send forth your thunders against the present heresy. For if they, usurping an authority which does not belong to them, have dared to convene a heretical council, while those who, following ancient custom, have not even the right of convoking an orthodox one without your knowledge, it seems absolutely necessary, we dare to say it to you, that your divine primacy should call together a lawful council, so that the Catholic dogma may drive away heresy and that neither your primacy may be anathematized with all the orthodox by these new voices without authority, nor that wills evilly disposed may find in this adulterous council an excuse for being involved in sin. It is in order to obey your divine authority as chief pastor that we have set forth these things as it befitted our nothingness, we the least members of the Church. For the rest we beg your holiness to count us among your sheep and to enlighten and to strengthen us by your holy prayers… It is of myself, a humble fishermen held in prison, that I write to you this letter, because my father and companion the monk, as well as my brother the Archbishop of Thessaloniki, are imprisoned in other islands. But they say the same things as I, and with me prostrate themselves at the sacred feet of your blessedness” (Patrologia Graeca 99, 1017 – Epistle 1)

The list of quotes could go on and on proving that papal primacy was recognized by the whole Church. Eastern Orthodoxy and Protestantism doesn’t have a leg to stand on. They are man-made traditions that nullify the Word of God (Mark 7:13).

Read Full Post »

Hello Tim,

My replies below…

Tim: Hello Steven,

Since I have been around and around with you on this for scores of pages in the past (I am sure we went well over a hundred), I don’t see the need to do this all again. I will respond to this one email, but I really don’t see how any good will come of another several hundred pages with you. Don’t you agree? So please do not expect another back-and-forth because it is not going to happen.

SPERAY2: I didn’t start this thing. I simply asked if you believed if Vatican 2 was infallible in virtue of itself. After you gave your answer, you attacked me on sedevacantism which I had no intention of getting into. So I’m going to defend myself and my position.

Tim: See below:

Dear Tim Staples,

On Catholic Answers Live, July 10, 2012, you gave the wrong answer on three separate points against me on the position of sedevacantism.

First point:

Tim, you argued that since Church law requires that only cardinals can elect a pope, sedevacantism fails because it adherents recognize that the cardinal elect is extinct and there is no way to get another pope. Thus, Christ’s promise of the gates of hell not prevailing, failed, because Vatican I dogmatically defined that there are perpetual successors until the end of the time.

Your argument is a straw-man, because you misrepresented the law and its application. The inability to apply a church law can’t prohibit the Divine right that Peter has successors. Vatican approved experts explain:

“When it would be necessary to proceed with the election, if it is impossible to follow the regulations of papal law, as was the case during the Great Western Schism, one can accept, without difficulty, that the power of election could be transferred to a General Council…Because natural law prescribes that, in such cases, the power of a superior is passed to the immediate inferior because this is absolutely necessary for the survival of the society and to avoid the tribulations of extreme need.” (De Ecclesia Christi, Billot)

Tim: As I said on the air, I would need magisterial authority here. In order to make a claim that papal law could be declared null and void and a “General Council” could exercise such authority I would need to see it taught by the Church and not just by a “Vatican approved expert” as you claim.

SPERAY2: What Church teaching is Cardinal Billot rejecting by saying the cardinal-elect could become extinct? I would like to see that magisterial teaching that states what you’re implying, Tim.

Tim: There are multiple problems here. First, a “General Council” has no authority without a Pope.

SPERAY2: It would have the same authority as the conclave. Why wouldn’t it?

Tim: Second, the Great Western Schism was not settled by a Council taking authority over the Pope.

SPERAY2: Agreed!

Tim: It was settled when Pope Gregory XII graciously submitted his letter of resignation at the Council of Constance. If he had not done so, the Council would have had no authority to depose him and the subsequent election of Martin V would have been invalid.

SPERAY2: Not exactly. You’re assuming Gregory was a true pope. He most certainly was recognized as one by many and his stepping down allowed for Martin to come into the picture, but it wasn’t over yet. Clement VIII was elected and some confusion still remained until Clement abdicated, and then there was absolutely certainty.

Tim: You are presenting a conciliarist argument here, but conciliarism was condemned by both Pius II in his Papal Bull Exsecrabilis and by Vatican I, both of which you acknowledge as valid.

SPERAY2: I’m not presenting a conciliarist argument at all, because I’m not saying that a council had anything to do with it. I’m arguing that reasonable doubt remained until one claimant was left and he was recognized by the rest of the faithful.

“.. . by exception and by supplementary manner this power (that of electing a pope), corresponds to the Church and to the Council, either by the absence of Cardinal Electors, or because they are doubtful, or the election itself is uncertain, as it happened at the time of the schism.” (De Comparatione Auctoritatis Papae et Concilii, Cajetan, OP)

Tim: Interesting theory, but no Church teaching to back it up.

SPERAY2: Where’s the Church teaching to back up your theory, Tim? At least, I present experts that support my position. Can you cite an expert to support yours?

“Even if St. Peter would have not determined anything, once he was dead, the Church had the power to substitute him and appoint a successor to him … If by any calamity, war or plague, all Cardinals would be lacking, we cannot doubt that the Church could provide for herself a Holy Father…Hence such an election should be carried out by all the Church and not by any particular Church. And this is because that power is common and it concerns the whole Church. So it must be the duty of the whole Church.” (De Potestate Ecclesiae, Vitoria)

Tim: We have the testimony of Scripture in Acts 1 with St. Peter clearly stepping in and declaring how Judas’ replacement would be chosen and the testimony of our fourth Pope St. Clement who explicitly tells us that the apostles did in fact make provision that after their deaths “other approved men should take up their office” (see Pope St. Clement I, Letter to the Corinthians, 42, 44).

SPERAY2: I have no problem here, so how does it apply. Vitoria isn’t disagreeing with it, he’s saying “even if” and then the position I’m advocating still works.

Tim: Also, I would note that as a matter of history, the entire Catholic world received Pope John XXIII as Pope and not only the Cardinals who elected him. The whole Church has also received each of his successors right down to Benedict XVI. A handful of disgruntled clergymen does not the Church make.

SPERAY2: Not everybody. Dr. Elizabeth Gerstner never accepted Roncalli. She was the Vatican insider who leaked out that Roncalli was going to be elected because it was all planned ahead. She knew them all personally. There are 10,000 Catholics who never received Benedict XVI as pope. Also, Pope Paul IV was clear that it didn’t matter if a heretic is acknowledged as pope by the whole world such a person is not pope. I submit that this teaching is part of the Divine law which is immutable. So your argument is moot.

Hence, the experts presuppose that the cardinal elect could become extinct despite Church law. So, who should we listen to? Tim Staples or the Vatican approved experts?

Tim: Listen to the teaching and directives of the Church.

SPERAY2: So where is that Church teaching that teaches your theory on this matter?

Also, I could point out that the Catholic Church had many true popes in the past who were unlawfully elected. Popes Vigilius, St. Eugene, John XII, and Alexander VI are just a few examples. Therefore, from historic precedent, it’s not absolutely necessary to have a true pope through lawful election. This being said, if Benedict XVI renounced his errors, got conditionally consecrated bishop, we radical traditionalists would accept him as pope for the good of the universal Church. After all, some antipopes in the past just assumed the Chair of Peter by the acceptance of the faithful. If it happened before, it could happen again.

Tim: You assume the nefarious events that surrounded the elections of these Popes means they were invalid.

SPERAY2: I didn’t say they were invalid. They were valid, but they were unlawfully elected.

Tim: The law concerning elections has changed over the years. The Popes have the authority to change those laws. Vigilius’ crimes of simony and at least complicity in murder do not invalidate his election.

SPERAY2: I never said it did. I said he was a pope, but he began unlawfully.

Tim: St. Eugene being elected while his predecessor was still Pope is an interesting case. His election, it is presumed, was validated after the death of St. Martin.

SPERAY2: St. Eugene started off unlawfully. He wasn’t pope until St. Martin abdicated.

Tim: John XII was quite the immoral fellow, but there is nothing about his election that is in question.

SPERAY2:  Oh yes, there was. His election violated the decree of Pope St. Symmachus (March 1, 499 A.D.) forbidding agreements during a pope’s lifetime about the choice of his successor.

Tim: Though some argue against it, there was most likely simony involved in Alexander VI’s election, but the Cardinals certainly and freely elected him.

SPERAY2:  The papal law at that time forbade simony as a nullifying factor in papal elections. Pope St. Pius X changed it. Alexander VI was unlawfully elected.

Tim: And this leads to another point. Even among the various theories of how a Pope could be “deposed” (all of which I reject),

SPERAY2: I agree with you. No one can depose a pope, except the pope himself.

Tim: you first have the theory that an Ecumenical Council could do so (which is absurd because a Council has no authority apart from the Pope as I said).

SPERAY2:  I absolutely agree that a council can’t depose a true pope.

Tim: You also have the theory that the same people who elected the Pope could depose him. Or you have the theory that “the whole Church” could elect or depose. Though I reject all of these theories, none of them apply in the case of sedevacantists today.

SPERAY2: I agree with you 100%. I would even go so far as to say those theories are contrary to the Divine law, and yes, they don’t apply in the case of sedevacantism, because the position of sedevacantism doesn’t hold to anything like that. Only a pope can depose himself.

Tim: The Cardinals who elected Pope Blessed John XXIII were alive and well for years after his election without a peep. The Universal Church received and loved Pope John and all of his successors.

SPERAY2: I submit that this is radically false, but even if it were true which it is not, it doesn’t mean a thing. The whole Church could possibly recognize an antipope as it has done before.

Tim: And I don’t recall Vatican II ever deposing him. So even if any of these theories were true, this little “sedevacantist” sect does not fit the criterion. A couple or three bishops do not make an Ecumenical Council. A handful of sedevacantists (relatively speaking) do not equal “the whole Church.”

SPERAY2: Believe it or not, I agree with this statement 100%. The problem, Tim, is that you don’t really understand sedevacantism at all. You think that you do, but you’ve simply got us wrong.

When asked if you could provide the Church teaching that gives an interregnum limit, you said the Church gave it with Pope Pius XII’s decree and the death of the last cardinal. This is your mere private interpretation of the law which contradicts the experts and simple logic. You may disagree with sedevacantism, but you can’t use the false argument that a true pope can’t be elected without cardinals.

Tim: I argue that a true Pope cannot be elected without the law of the Church.

SPERAY2: The Natural and Divine laws are also part of the Church, but you are incorrect, because I just demonstrated how we have true popes apart from the law of the Church.

Tim: And he certainly cannot be elected by a handful of disgruntled bishops fifty-four years after the election of the last Pope.

SPERAY2: To a certain extent that may be true, because I don’t automatically exclude all novus ordo Catholics as outside of the Catholic Church. Many are just in error, but they are certainly Catholic.

Tim: You do not have the law of the Church on your side.

SPERAY2: I do have the law on my side because I don’t hold to what you think I’m holding. Again, I gave an alternative with Benedict XVI himself.

Second point:

Tim, you argued that we know who the true popes were during the Great Schism. I submit that you may believe who they were, but you can’t say with absolute assurance.

Again the experts explain: “The Church is a visible society with a visible Ruler. If there can be any doubt about who that visible Ruler is, he is not visible, and hence, where there is any doubt about whether a person has been legitimately elected Pope, that doubt must be removed before he can become the visible head of Christ’s Church. Blessed Bellarmine, S.J., says: ‘A doubtful Pope must be considered as not Pope’; and Suarez, S.J., says: ‘At the time of the Council of Constance there were three men claiming to be Pope…. Hence, it could have been that not one of them was the true Pope, and in that case, there was no Pope at all….” (The Defense of the Catholic Church, 1927, Fr. Francis X. Doyle, S.J.)

Tim: It has been believed generally by the overwhelming majority of theologians for hundreds of years now that Gregory XII was the valid Pope who resigned at Constance. My faith is not rooted in the details of past elections, it is rooted in Matthew 16:18-19 as it has been definitively understood in the Church at least since Vatican I. God cannot go back on his own word. He said the gates of Hell would not prevail and they cannot. Your sect bases its existence on nothing but the opinions of this theologian and that theologian.

SPERAY2: That is where you are wrong. I agree with your statement above except the last sentence. You’re not presenting a case against me, because you don’t understand sedevacantism at all.

Tim: And even those are taken out of context. There is nothing in those statements that says they would agree with your interpretation of them nor would they have necessarily agreed with your application of them. You say I don’t have absolute assurance of the line of Gregory XII. You don’t have absolute assurance of anything.

SPERAY2: Of course, I do. You’re not paying attention.

The official list of popes, Annuario Pontificio, is technically not an official Catholic document. It isn’t authoritative and binding on Christians. The Catholic Church has never defined who all has reigned as Roman Pontiffs. As a matter of fact, the Annuario Pontificio has altered the list several times. Boniface VII was removed from the list in 1904 after a thousand years of recognition as true pope.

Tim: I think you are stretching the truth when you say Boniface VII was recognized as true pope for a thousand years. That may well be true, I don’t know, but there is no evidence he was ever validly elected.

SPERAY2: What difference does that make?

Tim: That I do know. And though there is little information at all about Popes of his time, we do know that he was dragged through the streets naked and mutilated after death. He did not seem to be the most beloved of Popes. And he did commit murder a couple times in attempting to gain the Papal throne. While that would not invalidate him per se it does seem to cast some question as to his validity. But again, my faith is not resting in the particulars of history surrounding our 264 successors of St. Peter (depending of course on how many times you count Benedict IX). It rests in Christ and the teachings of the Church, in particular for our purpose here, Session Four of Vatican I, which graces us with infallible assurance that there is and always will be (except for the interregnum periods, which are provided for in the law of the Church) a successor of St. Peter on the throne in the Bishop of Rome.

SPERAY2: I see that you don’t know your papal history very well and that is fine. You’re right about the rest, and I have always agreed with it.

Tim: Your sect is left to a situation where there is no Pope and there is no valid way to elect one.

SPERAY2: What? I explained how we can have a lawful election, and I demonstrated how to have valid pope through an unlawful election. You simply don’t know what you’re talking about! By the way, we aren’t a sect. You’re the sect since you can’t find the Vat2 particulars of your religion prior to Vat2.

We are free as Catholics to accept or not accept the Roman line during the Great Schism.

Tim: Yes, but we are not free to conclude from that that Pope Pius XII was the last valid Pope.

SPERAY2:  I didn’t say or imply it. I’m giving historic precedent. That’s all.

Third point:

Tim, you denied that Benedict XVI ever bowed towards Mecca. This fact is so devastating that you and Catholic Answers Live have to deny that it ever happened, but it most certainly did as you can read here: http://www.traditioninaction.org/religious/m012rpRatzingerInMosque.html

Tim: This is an example of why it is near impossible to have a meaningful discussion with you, Steven. You misrepresent what I say time and again. This is just like the old days. And it is never enough with you to simply disagree respectfully, you have to publish every word I say and try to make me (or any of your opponents) look as bad as you can. I truly feel sorry for you.

SPERAY2: This is simply untrue! You said Benedict XVI never bowed towards Mecca. If I’m publishing every word you say and you look bad, that’s not my fault. I’m trying to show people the truth which Catholic Answers doesn’t do all the time.

Tim: But at any rate, what I said was the Pope did bow and pray. In fact, I did a little more research and found that he took off his shoes as well. I’m sure you are upset about that as well. I am not. This he did out of respect. I think that is a good thing. The Pope simply bowed and prayed in the same direction everyone else did. And yes, it was toward Mecca. And BTW, this is also the same direction as Jerusalem. Hmmmmm.

SPERAY2: But you said he didn’t bow towards Mecca and that’s my point. Why couldn’t you just admit that you were wrong instead of falsely accusing me of misrepresenting you? BTW, Benedict XVI also folded his arms like the Muslims and I’m sure you think that’s a good thing too. Shoes off, arms folded, bowing towards Mecca while praying with Muslims, and you think this is a good thing! I rest my case!!!!

Tim: But why do Muslims bow to Mecca in the first place? It is believed that the Ka’aba (the black square building toward which Muslims face) contains an altar that was built by Abraham, our Father in the Faith according to Scripture. The Pope may well have been praying in the direction of Mecca to show our solidarity with Muslims in our belief in the one God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. I really don’t believe he was rejecting Christ and acknowledging Muhammad as his prophet, nor was he involving himself in some sort of syncretism. The reason why I did not agree with you is because of your conclusion from the fact that he bowed and prayed, not that he bowed and prayed. You assume the worst; I choose to give the benefit of the doubt unless I can be given reason not to. Reason that you and your article did not supply.

SPERAY2: Inter-religious worship is what you think is a good thing. I’m sorry, but this is where you depart from historic Christianity.

Tim, you stated that bowing towards Mecca would only constitute a sin and not a loss of the pontificate. Are you more Catholic than your pope? Benedict XVI doesn’t think it’s a sin. He promotes his actions as good Catholic discipline. Last year, he bowed before a Lutheran altar and prayed with a woman bishop. Watch the devastating video here: http://youtu.be/UD53KzHx-2Q By the way, would this be a venial or mortal sin for a knowledgeable theologian like Ratzinger?

Tim: Once again you misrepresent me. I said, “even if he did” fall into some sort of sin that would not result in the loss of his pontificate. I did not say he actually did. Can you at least see why I would not want to have an on-going dialogue with you? Just like last time where I spent an enormous amount of time trying to help you, I have to spend a huge proportion of the time just correcting your mis-representations of what I say. No, thank you. This will end my discussion with you.

SPERAY2: You also misrepresent me, when I’m trying to help you. You didn’t get the difference between unlawfully elected and invalidly elected. What about bowing towards the Lutheran altar and praying with a women bishop? Good thing, too?

Benedict XVI, as did John Paul II, teaches and promotes inter-religious worship which the Catholic Church has always taught as contrary to the Divine law. In 1986, John Paul II actually wore a pagan stole as he actively participated with a priestess in a Zoroastrian worship ceremony. Look at photos here: http://www.traditioninaction.org/RevolutionPhotos/A281rcJPII-Zoroastrian.htm

Tim: I’ve been down this road with you before. Why are you doing this again?

SPERAY2: What are you talking about? You never dealt with this with me.

I could give many more examples but these suffice. Your “great popes” aren’t mere sinners, but radical apostates. Apostates aren’t popes! We have many saints who gave up their very lives for refusing to bow or worship in pagan temples. John Paul II and Ratzinger even receive public blessings from shamans. Read one such example: http://www.traditioninaction.org/RevolutionPhotos/A111rcWojtylaShaman.htm

Tim: There is a qualitative difference between being forced to offer adoration to false Gods and freely choosing to acknowledge legitimate agreements we have with other religions. But here we go again. We’ve done this before. And for a lot of pages. In fact, I still have all of them.

SPERAY2: There is a qualitative difference between being forced to receive blessings from heathens and freely choosing to be blessed by heathens. There’s also a qualitative difference between being forced into pagan temples and wearing their outfits and freely choosing to do so. Your “popes” freely do so and that’s my point!!!!

The Church considers blessings from heretics as curses, but your Vatican 2 popes think nothing of receiving blessings from heathens. Canon XXXII states, “It is unlawful to receive the blessing of heretics, for they are rather curses, than blessings.” (The Seven Ecumenical Councils, Vol. 14, Hendrickson Publishers, 1995)

Tim: A heretic is someone who has knowingly and willingly left the Catholic Faith that they possessed. That canon does not apply to a situation where a person of another religion wishes to bless someone.

SPERAY2: The principle most certainly applies.

The Vatican 2 popes mock the papacy established by Christ, the Catholic Faith and the blood of those martyrs, all the while Catholic Answers defends these claimants to the papacy as greats.

Tim: Just as before, you haven’t given me any examples of this.

SPERAY2: You’re right, this discussion is useless.

The fact remains, however, that Benedict XVI bowed towards Mecca which you denied on the radio with your outright silly explanation about how you might accidently bow towards Mecca while praying in your California chapel.

Tim: That was called an “analogy.” The reason why I gave it is because I was trying to help you to see that bowing and praying in a Mosque does not mean that one is committing a sin ipso facto. It may mean, as I said before, he is acknowledging what we have in common with Muslims. This is not heresy nor is it a sin.

SPERAY2: That is not what you meant on the radio. Come on, Tim.

In my first question over the radio, you were dishonest in your reply about your debate several years ago with Sungenis over the infallibility of Vatican 2. Back in 2003, Sungenis clearly explained that Vatican 2 was not infallible in virtue of itself and you argued against him because (as you wrote), “It was an Ecumenical Council that was ratified by the Pope and used language that was very clear, for example, as I said before, in the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church and the Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation. Did you catch that word ‘Dogmatic’?”  Based on your position now, you couldn’t admit that back then, you were wrong and Sungenis was right. I have the full debate on file.

Tim: I have it as well. And Bob and I agreed that there is much in Vatican II that is infallible, but there were no new infallible declarations made extraordinarily. That is what he meant by “it is not infallible.” He was correct. I just thumbed through our dialogue and I did not see anywhere where I claimed that there were extraordinary infallible statements. But if I did, I would be wrong. However, I did see where I pointed out that there are other means whereby the Church can declare something infallibly. For example, the Universal and Ordinary Magisterium of the Church. I pointed out that we have to listen to the language of the Council (do we see words like, “we must believe…” or “the Church holds definitively…” or words to that effect), and if we have teachings that have been repeated in the Church over time, we may well be seeing infallible teaching communicated in that way as well. Let me use another analogy. Pope John Paul II, in Ordinatio Sacerdotalis,  declared the Church does not have the authority to ordain women and it uses very strong language. However, it was not an ex cathedra statement. But does that mean it was not infallible? By no means! It was infallible by virtue of the fact that it was repeating what was already the teaching of the Universal and Ordinary Magisterium of the Church. We may well have examples analogous to this from the Council. For example, when the Council taught, in Gaudium et Spes 22, “… we must hold that the Holy Spirit offers to all the possibility of being made partners, in a way known to God, in the paschal mystery.” Is this a new and infallible declaration of the Extraordinary Magisterium? No. But it may be (notice, I said “may be,” which means good Catholics can disagree on this) that this is a reiteration of a teaching that was already infallible by the fact that it is taught by the Universal and Ordinary Magisterium. In fact, I argue that this statement has antecedents as far back as the Council of Trent, in Pope Leo XIII, John Paul II and more, but at any rate, that is just an analogy.

Lastly, Patrick Coffin and you manipulated the discussion and used the 10 second delay in airtime to edit out my comments you didn’t want to deal with. My views were therefore misrepresented to an audience unsuspecting of your tactics. In the end, you made me and sedevacantism look foolish over the airwaves. If you were so sure that you’re right, then you would have given both sides a fair hearing. I only got a couple seconds to answer before you interrupted with your long replies (several minutes apiece). What you did is supremely dishonest, and uncharitable.

Tim: Actually, I let you speak while you interrupted me more than once.

SPERAY2: Not true. You never let me speak.

Tim: The only time I interrupted you is when you started plugging your website while refusing to answer the question at hand.

SPERAY2: I was trying to plug my website because you weren’t letting me speak. I knew as soon as I started to say something, you would interrupt me, and you did.

Tim: And I don’t have to “make” sedevacantism look foolish. It does that all by itself. It is a foolish position to take.

SPERAY2: Then you should have had no worries letting speak. Clock the time I spoke after you went after me on sedevacantism.

When it comes to topics concerning the papacy and sedevacantism, you should call yourselves Not-so-Catholic Answers Live.

Tim: In your opinion, which is ultimately what your sect is based upon. Your opinion and the opinions of others. Your sect is void of any Magisterial authority precisely because you have left the living Magisterium of the Church.

SPERAY2: Right back at ya!

Tim: God Bless,

Tim

Sincerely,

Steven Speray

TIM STAPLES REPLIES AGAIN IN ANOTHER LETTER BELOW

Tim,

I knew you couldn’t resist replying to me again. Now I will leave you with another reply since you ignored or misrepresented the issues as usual.

Steven,

As I said before, after 118 pages with you before I am not going to re-argue everything. But I did read your letter and I must say it was painful to read. When I said the whole world accepted the elections of John XXIII, you said, “Not everybody. Dr. Elizabeth Gerstner never accepted Roncalli.” Dr. Elizabeth Gerstner. Really? Is that really your answer?

SPERAY: That’s right. She’s not the only one, of course, but she is important because she proved that something was wrong. But you also said that the whole world accepted Benedict XVI and that’s simply false. You forgot 10,000 Catholics who rejected him on the basis that he is a radical modernist. You know, the kind of guy who likes to invite pagans to pray to their pagan gods, or bows toward Mecca with Muslims in a Mosque, and towards Lutheran altars and praying alongside women bishops. But you know what, my original letter was about 3 wrong answers you made and instead of admitting that you’re wrong, you’ve attacked my position more and have made this a debate about sedevacantism. My intention was not to debate sedevacantism, but to simply show where and why you were mistaken on those 3 points.

Moreover, if you don’t know the difference between a Papal conclave, which has the authority of the Pope behind it, and a group of bishops without Papal authority, I don’t know what to say.

SPERAY: Why would a group of bishops not have the same authority as a papal conclave in extraordinary circumstances? If you can’t understand the simple explanation of the experts, I don’t know what to say.

There is a qualitative difference here akin to the difference between a dog and a human being. There is a substantial difference between the two.

SPERAY: Are you serious? That’s the best you can do? It’s hard for me to believe you had the nerve to send this to everybody. I asked you to give me that magisterial teaching that supports your theory which Cardinal Billot is rejecting and you give me nothing, but a… I don’t know what to say.

I will leave you with this. You can multiply theories from Cardinals long past and recount disciplinary documents from over 1,500 years ago that have been superseded all you want, but Pope St. Pius X and later Pius XII (long after Cardinal Billot, BTW) declared the way in which Popes would be chosen. Roma locuta est, causa finite est.

SPERAY: UNDER NORMAL CIRCUMSTANCES, WHICH I AGREE! The law about only cardinals electing was in play during Billot’s time too. That’s why Cardinal Billot stated, “if it is impossible to follow the regulations of papal law” THEN WHAT, TIM?Your Protestant-like personal interpretation of the law isn’t found anywhere in Church teaching or even by theologians. You can’t cite one source to support your theory. Thanks for proving me right again!

Whatever the Pope binds on earth is bound in heaven.

SPERAY: No kidding?

Though these matters are not infallible, that does not mean the Holy Spirit does not guide the Pope. The Holy Spirit guides the Church even in matters juridical. For Catholics, when the Pope speaks the matter is settled and the power of heaven will move heaven and earth to back up the Church. You may have had an argument a few hundred years ago (though even then there would need to be more things happen to give your sect claim to even a hint of a legitimate argument), but the Holy Spirit saw your little sect coming. The Church (the Kingdom of God) is as a grain of mustard seed (Jesus said that, remember), it starts small and grows becoming more and more distinguishable and defined.

SPERAY: You sound like a fifth-grader. I cited an approved manual by a famous Bishop and I believe that manual was used in the Pontifical Schools in Rome and yet, you can’t admit that you were wrong.

The Church has moved on from Conciliarism. It has moved on from questions as to whether or not a Pope’s personal sins can depose him automatically. They cannot.

SPERAY: You obviously didn’t read my reply very well or you wouldn’t have stated any of this. I don’t believe in conciliarism, and I don’t believe that a pope’s mere personal sins can depose him. So what is it, Tim? Where do we stand? You don’t know, because you don’t care to know. Your reply shows just how you’re being deliberately ignorant on the subject.

I have already gone over the difference between a Pope losing his authority de more verse de jure. All of your questions concerning the election of Popes have been answered by our Popes. The Pope has spoken. There is nothing more to say. We’ve been back and forth on this and a lot more.

SPERAY: You may do good against Protestants, but you lose every time to Catholics.

The way I see it, your sect has lost the Faith because it lost its faith in God to keep his word. Read Luke 22:29-32 and notice the emphasis on 1. the juridical authority of the Popes and bishops in union with the Pope (notice the emphasis on Jesus making the Apostles “judges”) and 2.

SPERAY: Another fifth-grade answer, from one who refuses to know where we stand. You don’t have the faith at all, unlike Sungenis who knows that inter-religious worship is contrary to the Divine law. I can recognize Sungenis, Tradition in Action, etc. as Catholics even though they reject sedevacantism. I respectfully disagree with them, on that point. However, you’re a radical modernist who hates the traditional Catholic Faith, and what’s worse, you’re egotistical. No one at Catholic Answers is quite like you. Akin, Keating, and Serpa, at least sound humble, but not ole Tim. He’s got to go overboard with the Scripture verses to show how much he knows. I could listen to Jimmy all day answer questions. I don’t want to sound uncharitable, but someone has to tell you. I’d be surprised if at least one of your co-workers didn’t think the same. Go ask them to give you an honest answer, and if they all think I’m nuts, then maybe it really is just me.

It is the devil that loves to intervene in these matters juridical to divide the Church. Unfortunately, your sect has fallen prey to the Devil’s schemes to divide the Church resulting in a few disgruntled clergy and laity throwing pebbles to try and knock down Mt. Everest.

SPERAY: I feel like I’m having rocks thrown at me by a child in elementary school.

Finally, if I couldn’t help you in 118 pages of back-and-forth, I don’t think 118 more will help. So please note for the record that I will not respond to any more emails from you.

SPERAY: We’ll see, but I suggest you keep quiet too, since you keep digging yourself a deeper grave.

Believe it or not, Steve, I respond to hundreds and hundreds of emails. I have to be judicious about who I spend time with as there are only 24 hours in a day. I have spent more time on your emails than 99% of people who email me. But there has to be a time when someone decides to stop. That someone is going to be me and that time is now. So please respect my decision on this and leave me out of any further of these email exchanges.

God Bless,

Tim Staples

SPERAY: I’ll be praying for your conversion, at least one of humility if nothing else.

Read Full Post »

Click here to read

Read Full Post »

There are several Feeneyite groups such as the Dimond Brothers of the Most Holy Family Monastery, and Elias Talani of catholic-saints.net. These groups have argued against the doctrine of Baptism of Desire and Blood as a heretical doctrine.

They all use very clever arguments that seem to affirm their position.

In my book, “Baptism of Desire or Blood (A Defense in Brief Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam)” you will find sound arguments defending the Catholic doctrine of BOD/BOB.

However, there is one particular never-before-seen argument that I use that definitively proves that BOD/BOB is true or else rejecting this doctrine will amount to blasphemy against Christ.

It is the single most important argument in proving BOD/BOB and the end to all arguments against it.

You will only find this argument in my book on pages 67-68.

Read Full Post »

In the past, the Catholic Church promoted the practice of the death penalty for sodomites as a just punishment because the Church considers sodomy an abominable crime against God and society.

At the Council of Nabluse, 1120 AD, under the Patriarch of Jerusalem Garmond of Picquigny and King Baldwin II, three canons [8-10] were issued that called for death by the stake sodomites who participated either actively or passively, unless it was a child or an elderly person acting against his will.

Four centuries later, the Fifth Lateran Council decreed that sodomites be executed by secular authorities.

In one of his very first acts as pope, St. Pius V in Cum Primum on April 1, 1566 ordered that sodomites be executed by the secular authorities.

Two years later, he declared in a Constitution:

“That horrible crime, on account of which corrupt and obscene cities were destroyed by fire through divine condemnation, causes us most bitter sorrow and shocks our mind, impelling us to repress such a crime with the greatest possible zeal.

Quite opportunely the Fifth Lateran Council [1512-1517] issued this decree: “Let any member of the clergy caught in that vice against nature, given that the wrath of God falls over the sons of perfidy, be removed from the clerical order or forced to do penance in a monastery” (chap. 4, X, V, 31).

So that the contagion of such a grave offense may not advance with greater audacity by taking advantage of impunity, which is the greatest incitement to sin, and so as to more severely punish the clerics who are guilty of this nefarious crime and who are not frightened by the death of their souls, we determine that they should be handed over to the severity of the secular authority, which enforces civil law.

Therefore, wishing to pursue with greater rigor than we have exerted since the beginning of our pontificate, we establish that any priest or member of the clergy, either secular or regular, who commits such an execrable crime, by force of the present law be deprived of every clerical privilege, of every post, dignity and ecclesiastical benefit, and having been degraded by an ecclesiastical judge, let him be immediately delivered to the secular authority to be put to death, as mandated by law as the fitting punishment for laymen who have sunk into this abyss.” (Constitution Horrendum illud scelus, August 30, 1568, in Bullarium Romanum, Rome: Typographia Reverendae Camerae Apostolicae, Mainardi, 1738, chap. 3, p. 33)

Catholics must recognize that the Catholic Church’s teaching and practice of the death penalty for such crimes as sodomy is moral and just or else the Gates of Hell have prevailed against the Catholic Church for teaching and practicing an unjust and immoral act.

In John Paul II’s hallmark encyclical, Evangelium vitae, 1995, he implies that the historic teaching and practice of death for sodomites was immoral and unjust.

He writes…

27. Modern society in fact has the means of effectively suppressing crime by rendering criminals harmless without definitively denying them the chance to reform.

40. Of course we must recognize that in the Old Testament this sense of the value of life, though already quite marked, does not yet reach the refinement found in the Sermon on the Mount. This is apparent in some aspects of the current penal legislation, which provided for severe forms of corporal punishment and even the death penalty. But the overall message, which the New Testament will bring to perfection, is a forceful appeal for respect for the inviolability of physical life and the integrity of the person. It culminates in the positive commandment which obliges us to be responsible for our neighbour as for ourselves: “You shall love your neighbour as yourself” (Lev 19:18).

41. The commandment “You shall not kill”, included and more fully expressed in the positive command of love for one’s neighbour, is reaffirmed in all its force by the Lord Jesus. To the rich young man who asks him: “Teacher, what good deed must I do, to have eternal life?”, Jesus replies: “If you would enter life, keep the commandments” (Mt 19:16,17). And he quotes, as the first of these: “You shall not kill” (Mt 19:18). In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus demands from his disciples a righteousness which surpasses that of the Scribes and Pharisees, also with regard to respect for life: “You have heard that it was said to the men of old, ?You shall not kill; and whoever kills shall be liable to judgment’. But I say to you that every one who is angry with his brother shall be liable to judgment” (Mt 5:21-22).

Notice that John Paul II ignores the fact that the death penalty is also a punishment, not merely a deterrent for future crimes.

In his misrepresentation of the New Testament, he actually implies that the love of neighbor is equal to God. If one commits a crime against God deserving of death, then he shall be put to death. Love of neighbor should not be used to justify the life of man over the due punishment to God’s justice. John Paul is saying that man should be given the type of respect that his life is inviolable which would necessarily place man’s dignity on equal status with God. The love of God is first and the love of neighbor is second. You will find that Vatican 2 does not make this distinction when it stated, “This is why the first and greatest commandment is love of God and of neighbor.” Gaudium et Spes #24 This is an outrageous lie!

While love of neighbor does reflect love for God, it does not mean that love of neighbor is the same as love for God.

John Paul made the argument that the death penalty goes against Christ and the Commandment “You shall not kill.”

John Paul II continues…

56. This is the context in which to place the problem of the death penalty. On this matter there is a growing tendency, both in the Church and in civil society, to demand that it be applied in a very limited way or even that it be abolished completely. The problem must be viewed in the context of a system of penal justice ever more in line with human dignity and thus, in the end, with God’s plan for man and society. The primary purpose of the punishment which society inflicts is “to redress the disorder caused by the offence”. [Catechism of the Catholic Church, No. 2266.] Public authority must redress the violation of personal and social rights by imposing on the offender an adequate punishment for the crime, as a condition for the offender to regain the exercise of his or her freedom. In this way authority also fulfils the purpose of defending public order and ensuring people’s safety, while at the same time offering the offender an incentive and help to change his or her behaviour and be rehabilitated. [Cf. ibid.]

It is clear that, for these purposes to be achieved, the nature and extent of the punishment must be carefully evaluated and decided upon, and ought not go to the extreme of executing the offender except in cases of absolute necessity: in other words, when it would not be possible otherwise to defend society. Today however, as a result of steady improvements in the organization of the penal system, such cases are very rare, if not practically non-existent.

According to John Paul II, the death penalty is justified only when it defends public order and ensuring people’s safety. Such cases where men cannot be kept from being a threat to society are, of course, practically non-existent. Maximum security would take care of any real problems.

In the past, sodomites were a threat to society as St. Pius V implied, but even though they could have been locked away and given time to reform, the historic Catholic Church didn’t do so.

The new religion of Rome raised the level of man’s dignity equal to God with the teaching that the love of God and neighbor are one and the same.

Modernist Rome has necessarily rejected the historic teaching and practice of the Catholic Church of putting sodomites to death thus undercutting the very foundation of their own religion.

Evangelium vitae is a typical modernist document since truth yesterday is not true today.

One might argue that it is not an infallible document and therefore no doctrine has been infringed.

Regardless, John Paul II has personally rejected Catholic doctrine and practice and his document will now be accepted by millions leading them astray.

Read Full Post »

The New Oxford Review is another liberal so-called Catholic magazine that prizes itself as being a staunchly orthodox Catholic publication.

They even go so far as to advertise whether you have the guts to subscribe and read what they think is so orthodox while adding the little comment, “No bozos or sissies, please.”

However, after sending my article to two different NOR email addresses back in the month of June, I never so much as received an email confirmation from either one.

Now, you can see what it is they don’t want their readers to read.

Hardly Playing Devil’s Advocate

by Steven Speray

John Paul II mostly likely will be canonized by Benedict XVI.

And why shouldn’t he be?

Tom Bethell’s article “Playing Devil’s Advocate” gives possible reasons why this canonization should perhaps be put on hold, but hardly plays devil’s advocate as to the reason why this process should not take place. In the end, Bethell dismisses his entire advocate thesis with, “Obviously, John Paul was a man of personal holiness” and “should proceed without haste in formally discerning his sanctity.”

Bethell states, “only the Church can declare someone a saint,” but the fact remains that great Catholic saints of the past were recognized by the faithful while never being declared so by the Church.

St. Patrick is a prime example!

John Paul II, who like St. Patrick, is recognized by many as a saint. But is John Paul II really like Patrick, a great Catholic leader filled with personal holiness?

To question John Paul’s personal holiness among Vatican 2 “Catholics” is like questioning whether Mohammed was a true prophet among Muslims. It cannot be done without greatly upsetting the devout lovers of such men.

However, truth doesn’t man-please and truth is what matters.

What makes John Paul II a man of holiness or unholiness?

Like St. Patrick, John Paul II did seem to be a deeply prayerful man.

Obviously, orthodoxy would be a necessary part of holiness.

Was John Paul orthodox in his teaching? Did he knowingly believe and teach any kind of heresy by way of word or action that would be contrary to the faith keeping or leading men into heresy and apostasy?

In Ireland, St. Patrick didn’t waste any time condemning the Druid religion as one that worships the Devil. He went about the countryside declaring the Gospel while denouncing druid paganism. He did not welcome druids to pray to their gods for peace. He did not go inside their pagan temples and pray with them at all, and he certainly never received as a bishop the blessings from leaders of this pagan religion. He actually broke their laws in public and prayed incessantly that his life be spared from death by the druid hand.

St. Patrick was concerned of the Druid spells and poisons precisely because he knew the evils of false religion with its black laws of heathenism, false laws of heresy, and the deceits of idolatry.

The result of Patrick’s witness to Christ in Ireland was the complete conversion of the entire country to Catholicism which, in turn, saved civilization as the Scriptures (as well as many other great works) were preserved by his monks.

How does this contrast with John Paul II?

In 1985, John Paul II prayed “with” African Animists known as “witch doctors.” (L’Osservatore Romano, August 26, 1985, p. 9.)

On February 5, 1986, in the city of Chennai (Madras for the Zoroastrians) India, John Paul II, alongside Dr. Meher Master Moos, actively participated in a Zoroastrian ceremony by lighting a candle while wearing a pagan stole with the symbols of the pagan religion.

The following year, “During his visit to Phoenix in 1987, John Paul II received a ritual ‘blessing’ from the Pima Indian shaman Emmet White using an eagle’s feather. John Paul said that the act had ‘enriched the Church.'”

In 1986 and 2002, John Paul II invited all the world’s religious leaders to come to Assisi, Italy and pray and offer sacrifices to each of their individual gods for world peace. Leaders from Eastern Orthodoxy, Protestantism, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, Tenrikyo, Shintoism, Sikhism, Zoroastrianism, and Voodoo attended with prayers and even with animal sacrifices from the Voodooists all in the name of peace.

John Paul II also promoted Islamic culture when he stated in his message to “Grand Sheikh Mohammed,” Feb. 24, 2000: “Islam is a religion. Christianity is a religion. Islam has become a culture. Christianity has become also a culture… I thank your university, the biggest center of Islamic culture. I thank those who are developing Islamic culture…” (L’Osservatore Romano, March 1, 2000, p. 5.)

This is a culture that blasphemes the Most Holy Trinity while misleading literally a billion people away from the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Later, John Paul II, on March 21, 2000, stated: “May Saint John the Baptist protect Islam and all the people of Jordan…” (L’ Osservatore Romano, March 29, 2000, p. 2.)

In his Feb. 4, 1993, address to the Voodoo representative of Benin at Cotonou, John Paul II actually promoted the African religion of Voodooism implying that man may be saved in Voodoo.

Voodoo priests saw John Paul’s “Apostolic Exhortation Ecclesia in Africa” as an endorsement of their religion. In a paper by N. Adu Kwabena-Essem entitled “Pope’s Apology to Africans,” the Voodooist said, “African religions had their biggest boost two years ago when Pope John Paul II, on a visit to Benin, apologized for centuries of ridiculing African cultural beliefs by the Western world. Benin is the home of Voodoo…The crucial question is whether the Pope’s ‘penance’ will force others to start respecting African cultures, in particular the belief in African religions.”

In 1993, the L’Osservatore Romano estimated the adherents of Voodoo in Benin to comprise a mere 25 percent of its population and dying.

What was the result of John Paul’s visit?

Voodoo grew a staggering 60 percent in that same country, according to a January 1996 Associated Press report. Now, Benin celebrated the rebirth of voodoo as an officially recognized religion.

Many more examples of John Paul II mixing religions and taking part in non-Christian religious services, not to mention his recognizing Protestant sects as holy and righteous worthy of papal blessings could be given but these suffice.

Unlike St. Patrick, John Paul knowingly and freely taught by way of word and action complete and total apostasy from true Catholicism.

Unlike St. Patrick who converted millions to the true Catholic Faith, John Paul kept and led millions in the darkness of false religion including his own subversion of Christianity as Our Lady of Good Success, La Salette, and Fatima warned about and he did so in the name of Catholicism as one dedicated to Our Lady. His totus tuus was a cover as was the papal throne which he obviously never truly possessed.

Benedict XVI most likely will canonize John Paul II, and why shouldn’t he?

John Paul II is the saint of the new religion of Rome masquerading as Catholicism.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »