Archive for the ‘Law’ Category

epic fail 5


John Salza’s and Robert Siscoe’s new book, “True or False Pope – Refuting Sedevacantism and other Modern Errors” is selling fast according to the authors. They boast that the first print is almost sold out and claim the scales are now falling from the eyes of some (former) sedevacantists. They recently wrote an article claiming the book hasn’t been refuted, yet all their recycled arguments were answered long before their book was published. In my last post, I demonstrated how Salza/Siscoe’s book has already been refuted by Pope Pius XII’s Mystici Corporis Christi. In this post, more catastrophic errors will be presented.

Salza/Siscoe’s main argument hinges on how the loss of office occurs. Canon law defines it. Not once in 700 pages did Salza/Siscoe present an expert’s commentary on canon 188.4 because no canonist supports them. Salza/Siscoe use their private judgment on how the canons are to be interpreted.

Canon 188.4, 1917 Code of Canon Law:

“There are certain causes which effect the tacit (silent) resignation of an office, which resignation is accepted in advance by operation of the law, and hence is effective without any declaration. These causes are… (4) publicly defects from the Catholic faith.”

Salza/Siscoe argue the following four points.

1. Loss of Office from canon 188.4 is a severe vindictive penalty.

Salza/Siscoe write:

The sin of heresy alone, which has not been judged and declared by the Church, does not result in the loss of ecclesiastical office for a cleric. The loss of office for a cleric is a vindictive penalty, and there is a process in Church law which must precede vindictive penalties….

This also means that the loss of office for a cleric must be imposed (ferendae sententiae) by Church authority [70] which makes the loss of office a “vindictive penalty.” Footnote 70 – In the old 1917 Code, there was an exception to this rule for the more severe vindictive penalty (canon 188, §4). This topic will be discussed at the end of this chapter. (True or False Pope – Refuting Sedevacantism and other Modern Errors, p. 260, emphasis mine.)

Salza/Siscoe are entirely refuted by Fr. Gerald McDevitt. His work “The Renunciation of an Ecclesiastical Office,” published by Catholic University of America, is an invaluable resource for those interested in understanding the loss of office. On pp 115-117, McDevitt writes:

In treating of public defection from the faith, Coronata notes that the tacit renunciation which results in consequence of this defection is not strictly the effect of penal sanction. 10 (Institutiones, IV, n. 1864.) This statement is quite true. Certainly the tacit renunciation cannot be considered a penalty for a religious profession, which according to canon 188, n.1, effects a tacit renunciation. There is certainly nothing in such an act that would warrant a penalty. Even with regard to the acts in canon 188 which constitute crimes the writer believes that the tacit renunciation is not inflicted as a penalty. This fact seems quite clear to the writer, especially in view of the manner in which the Code refers to the tacit renunciation in the canons which treat of penalties. The quotation from the following two canons will serve to demonstrate the distinction that the Code makes. Canon 2168, § 2, in treating of the procedure against non-resident clerics, states the following:

In nomitione Ordinarius recolat poenas quas incurrunt clerici non residents itemque praescriptum can. 188, n. 8…

Canon 2314, in dealing with the crime of those who are guilty of heresy or apostasy, reads as follows:

§ 1,3. Si sectae acatholicae nomen dederint vel publice adhaeserint, ipso facto infames sunt et, firmo praescripto can. 188, n. 4, clerici, monitione incassum praemissa, degradentur.

The same procedure is followed in the other canons which make mention of a tacit renunciation. It is plainly evident that a distinction is being made between the threatened or enacted penalty on the one hand, and the tacit renunciation called a penalty. It is always set off in a separate ablative absolute clause when it is enumerated with penalties. For this reason the writer is of the opinion that a tacit renunciation is not to be classified as a penalty. The authors do not expressly designate it as a penalty, but they do list it along with the penalties when they consider the juridic effects consequent upon specific crimes. 11 (Vermeerch-Creusen, Epitome, III, 513; Coronata, Institutiones, IV, nn. 2178, 2196.

The direct purpose of this discussion was to demonstrate that cardinals are subject to the prescriptions of canon 188. Concomitantly the presentation of the arguments served the further purpose of clarifying that in this canon the law is not imposing a penalty, but is rather accepting the specified acts as tantamount to an express renunciation of office. It may here be noted also that a tacit renunciation and a privation of office are very similar, but that the law nevertheless consistently places them in different categories.

Fr. McDevitt continues under “Conclusions” page 156:

8. A tacit renunciation of an ecclesiastical office is not a presumed resignation; it is a true resignation admitted by the law as equivalent to an express renunciation.

9. A tacit renunciation of an ecclesiastical office is not a penalty, even though some of the acts which effect such a renunciation are criminal acts. Therefore, Cardinals are subject to the prescriptions of canon 188.

Salza/Siscoe, who arrogantly and obnoxiously attack sedevacantism on canon law, are proven wrong by the experts and it gets worse for them in the following points.

2. Public defection means joining another religion, public heresy alone doesn’t qualify.


(Note that “public heresy” and “public defection from the faith” are two different things. Sedevacantists have failed to grasp this point when they attempt to apply canon 188, §4, to the conciliar Popes.)…

As we will see below in our discussion on canon 188, §4, the old 1917 Code of Canon Law taught that in the extreme case in which a prelate publicly defects from the Faith by joining a non-Catholic sect, he is deposed without the need of a declaratory sentence. (ibid. p. 281)

Tacit resignation for public defection from the faith occurs when a prelate joins a non-Cathlic sect, not when he simply makes a heretical statement (judged so by private judgment). Canon 2314, §3 confirms this… (Ibid. p. 286)

In an article, titled, A Point-By-Point Refutation of Mario Derksen on Nestorius A Case of “Cherry-Picking” Theology and “Butchering” Canon Law, Salza/Siscoe write:

Speray needs to show us where “Rev. Augustine explains ‘tacit resignation’ in canon 188.4 is public heresy, not just joining another religion,” or he needs to retract his statement. Will he?

We have searched Fr. Augustine’s book thoroughly and found nothing that corroborates Speray’s claim. We’ve found a total of two references to Canon 188.4 in the entire book. One is found in the quotation we cited (page 280, footnote 13), and the other is on page 276.

Salza/Siscoe claim to have thoroughly searched and found nothing that corroborates my claim, yet Fr. Augustine writes in his commentary under canon 188.4 on page 161:

(4) Defection from the Catholic faith, if public, deprives one of all ecclesiastical offices he may hold; not, however, mere schism, if unconnected with heresy.

Fr. Augustine doesn’t mention joining another religion. He simply says office is lost by heresy, if public, schism doesn’t suffice by itself.

On page 86, in his “A practical commentary on the Code of canon law,” professor of canon law, Fr. Stanislaus Woywod translates c. 188.4 defection of faith:

(4) If a cleric has publicly lapsed from the Catholic Faith.

On page 139, from “The Renunciation of an Ecclesiastical Office,” Fr. Gerald McDevitt writes:

The defection of faith must be public. It is to be noted immediately that adherence to or inscription in a non-catholic sect is not required to constitute the publicity that the canon demands.

See below for McDevitt’s full commentary that defines defection of Faith as simply heresy and apostasy under canon 1325.

Very Rev. H. A. Ayrinhac taught in his “General Legislation in the New Code of Canon Law,” pp. 349-350:

Loss of Ecclesiastical Offices. Canons 185-191 “applies to all offices, the lowest and the highest, not excepting the Supreme Pontificate.” (p. 346)

(d) Public defection from the faith, by formal heresy or apostasy, with or without affiliation with another religious society. The offense must be public, that is, generally known or liable to become so before long. (Can. 2197.)

Salza/Siscoe quote Ayrinhac on deposition for canonical crime, but fail to quote him on canon 188.4 concerning the loss of office and public defection of faith. Whenever Salza/Siscoe see something from a canonist that doesn’t corroborate with their position, they simply ignore it and search out whatever appears to be in their favor to win the argument.

I’ve already shown in past articles what Pope St. Celestine and St. Robert Bellarmine say on defection of faith. Again, St. Robert Bellarmine:

And in a letter to the clergy of Constantinople, Pope St. Celestine I says: The authority of Our Apostolic See has determined that the bishop, cleric, or simple Christian who had been deposed or excommunicated by Nestorius or his followers, after the latter began to preach heresy shall not be considered deposed or excommunicated. For he who had defected from the faith with such preachings, cannot depose or remove anyone whatsoever.

Nestorius didn’t join another religion, yet he defected from the faith by heresy alone! Many more examples could be given.

3. Canonical warnings are necessary before Can. 188.4 is effective.


As we will see below in our discussion on canon 188, §4, the old 1917 Code of Canon Law taught that in the extreme case in which a prelate publicly defects from the Faith by joining a non-Catholic sect, he is deposed without the need of a declaratory sentence. Nevertheless, the formal deposition would have to be preceded by a canonical warning (to confirm pertinacity), but it would not require a declaratory sentence of the crime. (ibid p. 281)

The reason why Salza/Siscoe think warnings are necessary is because they erroneously hold that loss of office is a vindictive penalty where warnings play a part in the punishments. However, Salza/Siscoe admit on page 45 that warnings are not always necessary. They write in footnote 40:

40 “Neither is it always demanded in the external forum that there be a warning and a reprimand as described above for somebody to be punished as heretical and pertinacious, and such a requirement is by no means always admitted in practice by the Holy Office” (De Lugo, disp. XX, sect. IV, n. l57-158, cited in “Essay on Heresy,” by Arnaldo da Silveira).

However, Salza/Siscoe claim on the same pages of their book that the pope is the exception to the rule, but they don’t cite the full context of De Lugo who continues…

For if it could be established in some other way, given that the doctrine is well known, given the kind of person involved and given the other circumstances, that the accused could not have been unaware that his thesis was opposed to the Church, he would be considered as a heretic from this fact… The reason for this is clear because the exterior warning can serve only to ensure that someone who has erred understands the opposition which exists between his error and the teaching of the Church. If he knew the subject through books and conciliar definitions much better than he could know it by the declarations of someone admonishing him then there would be no reason to insist on a further warning for him to become pertinacious against the Church.

So while Salza/Siscoe admit that other clerics wouldn’t always need canonical warnings because they should know better, the pope would always need canonical warnings even though he should know better, too. That’s the kind of logic Salza/Siscoe use in their futile attack against sedevacantism.

Canon laws clearly spell out how canonical warnings always come from superiors. Popes might be warned, but not canonically, because canonical warnings can’t be given to popes.

Popes and cardinals don’t suffer ecclesiastical penalties found in the penal legislation of the Fifth Book of the Code of Canon Law. Therefore, they don’t get warned. More importantly, Canon 1556 tells us: The First See is judged by no one. Yet, Salza/Siscoe keep arguing that popes can be judged for crimes, issued canonical warnings, and then suffer ecclesiastical penalties for those crimes. It is one absurdity heaped upon another absurdity.

Canon 188 is not a penalty. It requires no warnings because it’s a tacit resignation.

4. Professing public heresy is not openly and publicly leaving the Church.


As we will see below in our discussion on canon 188, §4, the old 1917 Code of Canon Law taught that in the extreme case in which a prelate publicly defects from the Faith by joining a non-Catholic sect, he is deposed without the need of a declaratory sentence. Nevertheless, the formal deposition would have to be preceded by a canonical warning (to confirm pertinacity), but it would not require a declaratory sentence of the crime. In fact, this extreme case may be what Bellarmine was actually referring to in De Romano Pontifice, when he wrote:

“This is the opinion of all the ancient Fathers, who teach that manifest heretics immediately lose all jurisdiction, and outstandingly that of St. Cyprian (lib. 4, epist. 2) who speaks as follows of Novatian, who was Pope [antipope] in the schism which occurred during the pontificate of St. Cornelius: ‘He would not be able to retain the episcopate, and, if he was made bishop before, he separated himself from the body of those who were, like him, bishops, and from the unity of the Church.’ According to what St. Cyprian affirms in this passage, even had Novatian been the true and legitimate Pope, he would have automatically fallen from the pontificate, if he separated himself from the Church.

This is the opinion of great recent doctors, as John Driedo (lib. 4 de Script. et dogmat. Eccles., cap. 2, par. 2, sent. 2), who teaches that only those separate themselves from the Church who are expelled, like the excommunicated, and those who depart by themselves from her or oppose her, as heretics and schismatics. And in his seventh affirmation, he maintains that in those who turn away from the Church, there remains absolutely no spiritual power over those who are in the Church. Melchior Cano says the same (lib. 4 de loc., cap. 2), teaching that heretics [those who have turned away from the Church] are neither parts nor members of the Church, and that it cannot even be conceived that anyone could be head and Pope, without being member and part (cap. ult. ad argument. 12).”131

By referring to heretics as those who “separate themselves from the Church,” who “turn away from the Church,” and who “depart by themselves from her,” Bellarmine is referring not to those who merely profess a heretical proposition, but to those who openly leave the Church (no longer accepting the Church as the rule of faith). (ibid. pp. 281-282)

Professing heresy is openly leaving the Church and no longer accepting the Church as the rule of faith. All heretics “separate themselves from the Church,” “turn away from the Church,” and/or “depart by themselves from her.”

As proved in Part II of this series, Pope Pius XII declared in Mystici Corporis Christi that the sin of heresy severs an individual from the Body of the Church by its very nature. A severed individual cannot hold office in the Church. Salza/Siscoe deny the pope’s teaching. 

At the end of this study, Fr. Gerald McDevitt explains in, “The Renunciation of an Ecclesiastical Office” why Salza/Siscoe are wrong again.

Most Reverend Eric MacKenzie wrote on page 19 in his – “The Delict of Heresy”:

The heinousness of apostasy and heresy is found in the fact that misbelieve or unbelief is a blasphemous imputation of error deceit to God Himself. A further blasphemy is at least implicit, in that the apostate or heretic thinks, or seems to think, that he has some means of distinguishing truth from error, which operates more certainly and more infallibly than does God’s own Infinite Intelligence. Hence, sins against faith are basically blasphemies against God Himself. As such they are considered, next to odium Dei, the most heinous that man can commit. Nor is there any essential distinction between the guilt of heresy and of apostasy, since the same blasphemy is implicit in both.

Nowhere in Bellarmine’s above paragraphs do we see that joining another sect is a necessary requirement for defection of faith. In fact, we’ve already seen how St. Robert Bellarmine taught that Nestorius defected from the faith by heresy, and not joining another religion. Salza/Siscoe/SSPX etc. are so bent on not seeing the truth, that they twist simple concepts into absolute nonsense and think they’ve won the argument.

Because no expert canonist supports Salza/Siscoe, they dig themselves a deeper grave by using Novus Ordo non-canonist Rev. Brian Harrison for support on canon 188.4. Salza/Siscoe write:

What exactly does the canon mean by “publicly defected from the Faith”? The Sedevacantists interpret it to mean that if they privately judge a Pope to be a heretic, he has therefore “publicly defected from the faith,” which means his See (Sede) is vacant (vacat: hence sede vacante). But is this really what the canon under tacit resignation means? No, not at all. To quote Fr. Brian Harrison:

“Canon 188, §4 states that among the actions which automatically (ipso facto) cause any cleric to lose his office, even without any declaration on the part of a superior, is that of ‘defect[ing] publicly from the Catholic faith’ (‘A fide catholica publice defecerit’). However, to ‘defect publicly’ from the faith, in this context, clearly means something a lot more drastic than making heretical (or allegedly heretical) statements in the course of public speeches or documents. This particular cause of losing an ecclesiastical office is found in that section of the Code dealing with the resignation of such an office (cc. 184-191), and is part of a canon which lists eight sorts of actions which the law treats as ‘tacit resignations.’ In other words, they are the sorts of actions which can safely be taken as evidence that the cleric in question does not even to want to continue in the office he held up till that time, even though he may never have bothered to put his resignation or abdication in writing.”136

A simple review of the explanation of this canon, as found in the canonical manuals, explains precisely what the Church means by “public defection from the faith.” The statement does not apply, as Fr. Harrison correctly notes, to a person who merely makes a heretical statement. Public defection from the faith refers to a prelate who publicly joins a false religion, either formally or informally.

This is tacit resignation recognized by law (Canon 188.4) and therefore the vacancy is one de facto et iure [by fact and by law].”138

Tacit resignation for public defection from the faith occurs when a prelate joins a non-Cathlic sect, not when he simply makes a heretical statement (judged so by private judgment). Canon 2314, §3 confirms this when it provides:

“Canon 2314: (3) if they have joined a non-Catholic sect (Si sectae acatholicae nomen dederint) or publicly adhered to it (vel publice adhaeserint), they are ipso facto infamous, and clerics, in addition to being considered to have tacitly renounced any office they may hold, according to canon 188.4, are, if previous warning proves fruitless, to be degraded” (emphasis added). Furthermore, as noted above in Canon 2314 and in the quotation from Fr. Augustine, even in this extreme case in which a cleric publicly defects from the faith by joining a non-Catholic sect, the prelate must be duly warned before being degraded or “deposed.” Thus, even when a cleric openly leaves the Church (by joining another religion), thereby abandoning his office (which is de facto vacant due to his “tacit resignation”), he must first be warned by ecclesiastical authority before he is formally deposed (or degraded) by the Church.

This is also confirmed by Fr. Ayrinhac’s commentary on the 1917 Code, wherein he notes that a cleric who “formally affiliates with a non-Catholic sect, or publicly adheres to it” is only deposed after being warned. Wrote Fr. Ayrinhac:

“If they have been formally affiliated with a non-Catholic sect, or publicly adhere to it, they incur ipso facto the note of infamy; clerics lose all ecclesiastical offices they might hold (Canon 188.4), and after a fruitless warning they should be deposed.”139 [Footnote139] Ayrinhac, Penal Legislation in the New Code of Canon Law, p. 193. Note: “A deposition is an ecclesiastical vindictive penalty by which a cleric is forever deprived of his office or benefice and of the right of exercising the functions of his orders.” Catholic Encyclopedia (1913), vol. IV, p. 737. (ibid. pp. 284-286)

Clearly, canon 188, §4 in no way supports the Sedevacantist position, since: 1) none of the conciliar Popes have publicly defected from the faith by joining a non-Catholic sect; and, 2) they have not been warned (which the canon requires before deposition, or “degradation” occurs). Without even addressing whether or when canon law applies to the Pope, the foregoing analysis demonstrates that the Sedevacantists’ effort to commandeer this canon in support of their thesis is categorically misapplied and thus completely erroneous. It also demonstrates why such critical issues are left to the public judgment of the proper authorities in the Church, and not the private judgment of individual Catholics in the street. (ibid. p. 287)

We just read Salza/Siscoe’s private interpretation of canon law and their misunderstanding of Very Rev. H. A. Ayrinhac’s commentary. They state, “A simple review of the explanation of this canon [188.4], as found in the canonical manuals, explains precisely what the Church means by “public defection from the faith.”

Yet, they don’t cite a single manual on canon 188.4 because not a single canonical manual claims that public defection from the faith requires adherence to a non-Catholic sect.

On pp. 136-140 in “The Renunciation of an Ecclesiastical Office” Fr. Gerald McDevitt clarifies defection of faith in canon 188.4:

Since it is not only incongruous that one who has publicly defected from the faith should remain in an ecclesiastical office, but since such a condition might also be the source of serious spiritual harm when the care of souls is concerned, the Code prescribes that a cleric tacitly renounces his office by public defection from the faith. Prior to the Code the law imposed a privation of office and benefice on a cleric for such a crime. This penalty was certainly imposed upon those clerics who were publicly guilty of heresy and of apostasy, but because of two apparently contradictory laws it was disputed whether the penalty applied also to those who were publicly guilty of schism. The present law attaches a tacit renunciation instead of a privation of office to a public defection from the faith. Since canon 188, n. 4, uses a general terminology, it necessary to determine the meaning of defection of faith and also to determine the extent of publicity that is required if the act of defection is to become the basis for a tacit renunciation of office.

Since three specific crimes, namely, heresy, apostasy and schism, will enter this discussion, it is necessary to give the definitions of them as found in the Code. These definitions are contained in canon 1325, §2, which reads as follows:

Post receptum baptismum si quis, nomen retinens christianum, pertinaciter aliquam ex veritatibus fide divina et catholica credendis denegat aut de ea dubitat, haereticus; si a fide Christiana totaliter recedit, apostate; si denique subess renuit Summo Pontifici aut cum membris Ecclesiae ei subiectis communicare recusat, schismaticus est.

These definitions are quite clear. Apostasy is a total defection from the faith, while heresy is only a partial defection, but as MacKenzie remarks (The Delict of Heresy in Its Commission, Penalization, Absolution, The Catholic University of America Canon Law Studies, n. 77 (Washington, D.C.: The Catholic University of America, 1932), p. 19), they are essentially the same, since the rejection of any one truth involves the same blasphemous attitude towards God that is involved in a denial of all the truths.

The authors are not in agreement as to whether schism is to be included in the meaning of the term “defection of faith,” as used in canon 188, n. 4. Augustine, Blat, Toso and Coronata do not regard schism as constituting a defection from the faith as understood in canon 188, n. 4. since schism as such does not essentially militate against the possible retention of the faith even in its entirety. Maroto, Vermeersch-Creusen, Cocchi and Sipos, on the other hand, consider schism pure and simple as sufficient to constitute a defection from the faith and hence to call for the application of the sanction enacted in canon 188, n. 4. Heneghan includes those who are guilty purely of schism in his interpretation of the clause, “qui notorie aut catholicam fidem abjecerunt,” in canon 1065, § 1. The expression which Heneghan interprets in this manner is substantially the same as the expression employed in canon 188, n. 4, which reads as follows: “A fide catholica publice defecerit.”

According to the strict interpretation of the words contained in canon 188, n. 4, and of the definition of schism, it must be admitted that the canon does not indisputably comprehend the condition of pure schism, since in its essence schism does not denote defection from the faith, but rather connotes a violation of obedience and charity. However, one could doubt that the law intends to exclude the consideration of schism from this canon, for in canon 2314, §1, n. 3, which provides penalties for the public adherence to a non-catholic sect, cognizance is taken of canon 188, n. 4, with the words “firmo praescripto can. 188, n. 4.” Since the wording of canon 2314, § 1, n. 3, applies to a schismatical sect as well as to a heretical one, and since the application of canon 188, n. 4, is confirmed in this canon, on could reasonably be led to conclude that the wording of canon 188, n. 4, means to comprise also the condition of pure schism.

In practice it will be extremely rare that a case of pure schism will arise, for almost invariably and all but inevitably some heresy will be joined to it. This is especially true since the time of the solemn definition of the primacy and the infallibility of the Roman Pontiff. If, however, there should arise a case of pure schism on the part of a cleric, the writer believes that the cleric would not lose his office by a tacit renunciation since the sanction of canon 188, n. 4, is of but doubtful efficacy in view of its questionable comprehension of the condition of pure schism, and especially since the effective application of that sanction involves the forfeiture of a vested right.

The defection of faith must be public. It is to be noted immediately that adherence to or inscription in a non-catholic sect is not required to constitute the publicity that the canon demands. The defection must be public according to the definition of publicity which is found in canon 2197, n. 1:

Delictum est publicum, si iam divulgatum est aut talibus constigit aut versatur inadiunctis ut prudenter iudicarit posit et debeat facile divulgatum iri.

The authors are in agreement that this is the type of publicity postulated for making the defection a public one. Thus the defection from the faith may be public by reason of the fact that it is already known to a notable part of the community. The law does not prescribe any special number as being necessary to constitute a notable part of the community. Determination of this point is left to man’s prudent judgment. Besides being public by reason of actual divulgation, the defection from the faith may be public also because of the fact that the circumstances force one to conclude that it will be easily divulged in the future. Thus if even only a few loquacious persons witnessed the defection from the faith, or if the sole and only witness was a taciturn person who later threatened to divulge the crime because of an enmity that has arisen between him and the delinquent, the delict would be public in the sense of canon 2197, n. 1.

A cleric, then, if he is to occasion the tacit renunciation of his office, must have defected from the faith by apostasy or heresy in a public manner according to the explanation just given. Since the writer holds the opinion that tacit renunciation is not of the nature of a penalty, he holds also that the prescriptions of canon 2229 concerning excusing causes with reference to latae sententiae penalties do not apply to the case of a tacit renunciation of office on the part of a cleric who has perpetrated the act which is mentioned in canon 188, n. 4. Thus the writer believes that even if it were thinkable that a cleric was excused from incurring excommunication involved in a defection from the faith in view of the prescriptions of canon 2229, § 3, n. 1, he still would lose his office by a tacit renunciation. In this regard a tacit renunciation is like an irregularity, which, while in many respects it looks like a penalty, is nevertheless not a penalty in a truly canonical sense.

John Salza and Robert Siscoe have been proven wrong about Nestorius, Cardinal Billot, St. Robert Bellarmine, Popes Pius XII and St. Celestine, the Councils of Constantinople IV and Vatican I, the four marks of the Church, and now the canonists have thoroughly refuted and exposed their canon law folly. They have lied about sedevacantism and sedevacantists, like Cekada, Derksen, and me.

Just like the devil who was defeated at the Cross but continues with the lies and bringing millions of souls down to hell with him, Salza/Siscoe will continue to write more ridiculous articles, brag about how many souls they’ve converted, how many books they’ve sold, and how awesome they’re arguments are by telling everyone that their book has never been refuted.

The next installment of this series will deal with Salza/Siscoe’s huge omissions in their book against sedevacantism. These omissions prove sedevacantism, the reason why Salza/Siscoe don’t have them in their book.

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The Remnant’s Fiasco

Note: The above article is a revised edition. I revised it because I wanted to be fair with Robert Siscoe who thought I misrepresented him. The original article had Siscoe’s name on the title. He asked me to remove his name and then threaten me if I didn’t. Out of charity I removed his name. His threats meant nothing as I told him over the phone.

Since then, Siscoe has posted a note of his own against me claiming: After Mr. Speray read the following refutation of his piece, he entirely re-written his original article and reposted it on his website.

This is not true. I didn’t entirely rewrite the article. I actually kept nearly all of the original. I had to change the following: THIRD ERROR: The automatic penalty of excommunication for clerics is in the internal forum only. Because Siscoe claimed he never said it. However, I have a witness who will testify that Robert Siscoe did in fact say it and then lied about it when I posted the article.  Siscoe continues…

He provided his readers with no indication that he made any changes. In fact, he retained the original date.  The completely revised article is now posted on Novus Ordo Watch with the original title and original date. This is this sort of dishonest tactic that causes many to doubt the sincerity and honesty of the Sedevacantists. The original version was saved by this author and is available upon request.) I have the original to prove it. 

Siscoe was sent my revised version BEFORE he published his version and then makes these accusations.

Siscoe and Salza are big hypocrites who do what they denounce others for doing or what they falsely claim others are doing.

I have the original version of the article, too. I don’t take back anything I said in the original.

Since the publication of this article, Robert Siscoe wrote a reply titled “Answering a Sedevacantist Critic.” I wrote a response to his silly piece here:



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Can a pope believe contrary to the Divine laws and the Catholic faith if the Church is unaware of his intentions, or even if he (papal claimant) personally thinks that he isn’t believing and practicing contrary to the Catholic Faith?

In other words,

Does the pope actually have to believe in the Divine laws and Catholic Faith or does he only have to have the intention to do so while manifestly going against the Faith in the external forum?

The Law doesn’t require internal knowledge or intention. To be found guilty of heresy, obstinacy only needs to be observed in the external forum, even if subjectively one isn’t actually obstinate. No one can judge hearts, not even the Church. According to the Law (both Divine and Church), the pope must in the external forum manifestly demonstrate that he knows and believes in the Catholic Church. He can’t be a dummy (ignorant), and he can’t only have an internal intention of following the Faith. According to the Law, there are no excuses for the man claiming to be pope. If he goes astray from defined truth or Divine law, he must be considered a non-Catholic and a non-member of the Church, no matter what! This is universally taught by the Church through the popes, saints, and theologians.

Canon 2200.2, 1917 Code of Canon Law: “When an external violation of the law has been committed, malice is presumed in the external forum until the contrary is proven.”

The very commission of any act which signifies heresy, e.g., the statement of some doctrine contrary or contradictory to a revealed and defined dogma, gives sufficient ground for juridical presumption of heretical depravity… Excusing circumstances have to be proved in the external forum, and the burden of proof is on the person whose action has given rise to the imputation of heresy. In the absence of such proof, all such excuses are presumed not to exist.” (Eric F. Mackenzie, A.M., S.T.L., J.C.L. Rev., The Delict of Heresy, Washington, D.C.: The Catholic Univ. of America, 1932, p. 35. (Cf. Canon 2200.2).

Another canon law manual states: “If the delinquent making this claim be a cleric, his plea for mitigation must be dismissed, either as untrue, or else as indicating ignorance which is affected, or at least crass and supine… His ecclesiastical training in the seminary, with its moral and dogmatic theology, its ecclesiastical history, not to mention its canon law, all insure that the Church’s attitude towards heresy was imparted to him.” G. McDevitt, The Delict of Heresy, 48, CU, Canon Law Studies 77. Washington: 1932.

The Faithful are not required to read the mind of a delinquent even if that person claims to be pope. The Faithful are not required to presume innocence of a cleric, especially the pope, before concluding that he is a heretic.

Pope Leo XIII, Satis Cognitum (# 13), June 29, 1896:  “You are not to be looked upon as holding the true Catholic faith if you do not teach that the faith of Rome is to be held.

Pope Pius VI, Auctorem fidei, Aug. 28, 1794: “47. Likewise, the proposition which teaches that it is necessary, according to the natural and divine laws, for either excommunication or for suspension, that a personal examination should precede, and that, therefore, sentences called ‘ipso facto’ have no other force than that of a serious threat without any actual effect” – false, rash, pernicious, injurious to the power of the Church, erroneous.

St. Robert Bellarmine, De Romano Pontifice, II, 30:  “… for men are not bound, or able to read hearts; but when they see that someone is a heretic by his external works, they judge him to be a heretic pure and simple, and condemn him as a heretic.”

He continues…

“In addition to this, what finds itself in the ultimate disposition to death, immediately thereafter ceases to exist, without the intervention of any other external force, as is obvious; therefore, also the Pope heretic ceases to be Pope by himself, without any deposition.

Finally, the Holy Fathers teach unanimously not only that heretics are outside of the Church, but also that they are “ipso facto” deprived of all ecclesiastical jurisdiction and dignity.”

God is most clear in the Holy Scriptures.

Gal.1: 8-9: “But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to that which we preached to you, let him be accursed (anathema). [9] As we have said before, so now I say again, If any one is preaching to you a gospel contrary to that which you received, let him be accursed (anathema).

The conciliar popes (from Vatican 2) have declared another gospel, which concludes that the Church of Christ includes all the baptized regardless whether they have the true Faith. The dogma that the Church of Christ is one (perfectly united in faith) is rejected by the conciliar popes. The conciliar popes teach that the Church of Christ and the Catholic Church are two different things by teaching the Catholic Church is one and perfectly united, but the Church of Christ still lacks unity and needs to come into conformity of Catholicism. The conciliar popes, with their subsists clause found in LG of Vatican 2, Ut Unum Sint, Dominus Iesus, and the CDF explanations, are clear that the Body of Christ, Church of Christ and the Catholic Church ARE NOT ALL ONE AND THE SAME THING! Also, the conciliar popes reject the Divine law that forbids inter-religious worship. I’ve written many times of his bowing towards Mecca in a Mosque and bowing towards a Lutheran altar while praying with a woman bishop. Many more examples could be added, but these two suffice. Benedict XVI has most recently shown in his book series Jesus of Nazareth that he doesn’t even believe in Original Sin as taught by the Church. He even ridicules it. Read here and here

There’s no end with him.

Catholic Encyclopedia, 1913

“The Pope himself, if notoriously guilty of heresy, would cease to be Pope because he would cease to be a member of the Church.”

Bishop BillotDe Ecclesia, 1927

“Given, therefore, the hypothesis of a pope who would become notoriously heretical, one must concede without hesitation that he would by that very fact lose the pontifical power, insofar as, having become an unbeliever, he would by his own will be cast outside the body of the Church.”

Wernz-Vidal — Canon Law, 1943

“Through notorious and openly divulged heresy, the Roman Pontiff, should he fall into heresy, by that very fact (ipso facto) is deemed to be deprived of the power of jurisdiction even before any declaratory judgment by the Church… A Pope who falls into public heresy would cease ipso facto to be a member of the Church; therefore, he would also cease to be head of the Church.” And also: “A doubtful pope is no pope.”

A.  VermeerschEpitome Iuris Canonici, 1949

“At least according to the more common teaching; the Roman Pontiff as a private teacher can fall into manifest heresy. Then, without any declaratory sentence (for the Supreme See is judged by no one), he would automatically (ipso facto) fall from power which he who is no longer a member of the Church is unable to possess.”

Matthaeus Conte a CoronataInstitutiones Iuris Canonici, 1950

“If indeed such a situation would happen, he (the Roman Pontiff) would, by divine law, fall from office without any sentence, indeed, without even a declaratory one. He who openly professes heresy places himself outside the Church, and it is not likely that Christ would preserve the Primacy of His Church in one so unworthy. Wherefore, if the Roman Pontiff were to profess heresy, before any condemnatory sentence (which would be impossible anyway) he would lose his authority.”


You must conclude that the Benedict XVI is not the pope or else you are rejecting the Law of God and the universal teaching of the Church.


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Apparently after Rev. Shannon Collins made himself look foolish in public through my website, he felt the need to redeem himself. Collins did a two-hour interview with Robert Siscoe in an attempt to debunk sedevacantism. The interview was sent via a member of the Regina Pacis Community lead by Rev. John Rickert, FSSP of Lexington, Kentucky. Below is my open letter to the individual who regarded the interview as the definitive answer against the position of sedevacantism.

Dear _ _ _,

Thank you for providing this interview between Rev. Shannon Collins and Robert Siscoe. I listened to both talks all the way through, and I must tell you that this is one of the most dishonest talks I’ve ever heard on the subject. I’ll admit that it’s clever enough to fool the ignorant Catholic, but I’ll provide the proof why it’s contrary to the law and teachings of the Catholic Church according to the Catholic Church, and not the private judgment and interpretation of Shannon and Siscoe. I will also post this letter on my website for the world to see.

1: In Interview #1, Shannon and Siscoe quoted from Suarez and a French canonist on jurisdiction. Their conclusion was that if a heretical priest can provide valid sacraments (which is true), then such a person has jurisdiction in the Church.

What they fail to do is distinguish between different types of jurisdictions.  If what they say is true then Eastern Orthodox Patriarch heretics/schismatics would maintain their offices within the Catholic Church. Of course, this is absurd. An example would be the Patriarch of Constantinople. His sacraments are valid, but does that mean that he is a member of the Catholic Church? Of course, not.

Priests remain priests forever regardless, but the office of the papacy is an entirely different type of office than that of the priesthood.

The two quoted theologians are entirely incorrect by simple logic.

But then again, Benedict XVI did call these heretical/schismatic Eastern Orthodox Patriarchs, “Pastors in the Church of Christ” because Benedict XVI doesn’t believe the Church of Christ IS the Catholic Church as he plainly admits. So Benedict XVI might agree with Shannon and Siscoe’s reasoning.

2: Canon law was severely misrepresented by Shannon and Siscoe. They brought up the issue of being suspect of heresy, but they failed to give the expert explanations of the following canons which debunk their conclusions.

Vatican approved Professor of Canon Law, Rev. P. Charles Augustine, O.S.B., D.D explained in Canon 2315 that there are three types of suspicion for heretics.

“Violent suspicion amounts to morally certain proof…and is to be considered as a positive proof and therefore rather falls under can. 2314.”

Canon 2314.1, ignored by Shannon and Siscoe, states that all heretics incur ipso facto excommunication.

Augustine explained can. 2314:

“2) The penalties here enunciated are twofold: censure and vindictive penalties; besides, a distinction is drawn, according to can. 2207, n. 1, by reason of dignity, between laymen and clerics.

a)The censure inflicted is excommunication incurred ipso facto, which per se requires not even a declaratory sentence… Note that the term moniti [warnings] (2314 §1, n. 2) does not refer to the incurring of the censure. Consequently, no canonical warning or admonition is required.” (A COMMENTARY ON THE NEW CODE OF CANON LAW, Volume VIII, Book V, Penal Code, Canon 2314, pp. 275-276; B. Herder Book Company, Imprimatur by John J. Glennon, Archbishop of Saint Louis, Friday, August 25, 1922)

The Assisi Events qualify much more than a merely suspicion of heresy. These events are so outrageous that even Rickert called them contrary to the First Commandment, yet Rickert never dealt with the implication of them. These Events, no doubt, fall under the rubric of “violent suspicion.”

Now look at this devastating teaching from another expert in Canon law which Shannon and Siscoe never mention.

Canon 2200.2, 1917 Code of Canon Law: “When an external violation of the law has been committed, malice is presumed in the external forum until the contrary is proven.”

“The very commission of any act which signifies heresy, e.g., the statement of some doctrine contrary or contradictory to a revealed and defined dogma, gives sufficient ground for juridical presumption of heretical depravity… Excusing circumstances have to be proved in the external forum, and the burden of proof is on the person whose action has given rise to the imputation of heresy. In the absence of such proof, all such excuses are presumed not to exist.” (Rev. Eric F. Mackenzie, A.M., S.T.L., J.C.L., The Delict of Heresy, Washington, D.C.: The Catholic University of America, 1932, p. 35. (Cf. Canon 2200.2)

3: In both interviews, Shannon and Siscoe spend a great amount of time explaining why warnings are absolutely necessary to establish manifest heresy.

First, St. Robert Bellarmine never said a pope is to be warned! They quote the great saint and completely mangle his plain words: A pope who is a manifest heretic automatically (per se) ceases to be pope and head of the Church, just as he ceases automatically to be a Christian and a member of the Church. Wherefore, he can be judged and punished by the Church.  All the early Fathers are unanimous in teaching that manifest heretics immediately lose all jurisdiction. St. Cyprian, in particular, laid great stress on this point.”

If it takes warnings and such, then it wouldn’t be automatic and immediate. Once a pope loses his office, of course, he will be judged and punished by the Church. It happens after he’s no longer a member of the Church!

Secondly, another Professor of Canon Law, R. P. Udalricus Beste, O.S.B., I.C.D., explains “Not a few canonists teach that, outside of death and abdication, the pontifical dignity can also be lost by falling into certain insanity, which is legally equivalent to death, as well as through manifest and notorious heresy. In the latter case, a pope would automatically fall from his power, and this indeed without the issuance of any sentence, for the first See [i.e., the See of Peter] is judged by no one.

“The reason is that, by falling into heresy, the pope ceases to be a member of the Church. He who is not a member of a society, obviously, cannot be its head. We can find no example of this in history.” (Introductio in Codicem. 3rd ed. Collegeville: St. John’s Abbey Press, 1946)

Warnings can only be given by superiors and it is up to their discrepancy to decide the fate of their inferiors. All the examples Shannon and Siscoe give from Daly, don’t apply to the papacy at all. They completely confuse the issue between the papacy and everyone else. Nearly an hour is wasted by Siscoe reading from Daly’s work only to misapply it to the subject of sedevacantism. Besides, Daly holds to the position of sedevacantism. Do Shannon and Siscoe really think Daly missed the point, which he spent several pages explaining? If they were going to use Daly’s work, why did they not use his explanation for sedevacantism and debunk that? Instead, they take Daly’s work out of context and used it as a pretext.

4: The approved apparition of Our Lady of Good Success –“Then the Church will go through a dark night for lack of a Prelate and Father to watch over it...”

According to the prophecy, this happens during the 20th century. What could this mean except that the Church will be without a pope? How many prelates and fathers watch over the whole Church? I only know one and he’s called the pope.

Besides, we know this regards the whole Church, because Our Lady is speaking about the collapse of the priesthood throughout the whole Church due to this lack of a prelate and father.

Shannon and Siscoe mention this quote but they don’t deal with it at all. They completely dismiss this particular prophecy altogether as meaning nothing. THIS IS DISHONEST! They even go so far as to say that Our Lady and Heaven are against sedevacantism right after Our Lady clearly teaches it! AMAZING!!!!

5: Shannon and Siscoe sort of reference the prophecy that Rome will lose the faith and drive away the pope, but they don’t tell you the whole thing. It reads, Rome shall apostatize from the faith, drive away the Vicar of Christ and return to its ancient paganism. …Then the Church shall be scattered, driven into the wilderness, and shall be for a time, as it was in the beginning, invisible hidden in catacombs, in dens, in mountains, in lurking places; for a time it shall be swept, as it were from the face of the earth. Such is the universal testimony of the Fathers of the early Church.” (Cardinal Manning, 1861)

Sedevacantism holds that Rome did drive away the Vicar of Christ. It all depends on how you interpret it. Shannon and Siscoe want it to mean that the pope had to flee from Rome and hide somewhere, but that’s not what it says. It could mean that but it doesn’t have to. Our interpretation actually fits the whole thing just fine.

6: The subject of Pope Liberius’ fall from the pontificate was brought up but notice, they didn’t stay on that subject long, because it proves them wrong and us right! After all, Liberius never actually became a heretic, according to St. Robert Bellarmine. However, the saint said that the mere appearance of heresy was enough to reject one as the pope, and it was right to vote in another pope while a true pope lived. What happened to those warnings that were supposed to be given first to establish that Liberius was first a manifest heretic? Was St. Robert Bellarmine contradicting himself? Of course not, because Shannon and Siscoe lied about what St. Robert Bellarmine actually taught concerning the pope.

Warnings are not needed, because no one can warn a pope as if an inferior could do something about it. No one can declare or depose a true pope. That’s the teaching of the Church. The First Vatican Council taught that the pope has jurisdiction over the whole Church, not that the whole Church has jurisdiction over the pope.

Imagine saying, “Hey Pope (X), if you don’t…. we’ll declare and depose you, because we have power over you.” Besides, this is impractical. What if the pope is orthodox, and a council declares the pope a heretic, when in fact the council is heretical, but you the layman don’t know who’s right? Who do you follow? According to Shannon and Siscoe, you would follow the council, because they are implying that the other authorities of the Church have power over the pope. In other words, Shannon and Siscoe are contradicting the First Vatican Council. If the common opinion ever held that the Church can depose a true pope, then the First Vatican Council dispelled that notion for good.

7: Only 5 theologians ever taught that a pope can be a heretic. Shannon and Siscoe mentioned two of them. I know of 3 more. None of them are saints, all of them have been shown to be in serious error by either the popes, saints, or the Vatican approved experts! All 5 of these erroneous theologians actually argue that a pope need not be a Catholic, and Shannon and Siscoe act like that is the correct position despite the numerous teachings from the popes, saints, and doctors.

8: Shannon and Siscoe fail to mention Cum Ex Apostolatus by Pope Paul IV which absolutely destroys every part of their arguments! Pope Paul IV taught that even if a heretic is elected by all the cardinals and is followed in obedience by everyone in the Church, such a person is still not the pope! THAT IS THE DIVINE LAW! It can’t be superseded by anyone or anything.

9: Shannon and Siscoe quote St. Francis de Sales: “Now when he (the Pope) is explicitly a heretic, he falls ipso facto from his dignity and out of the Church, and the Church must either deprive him, or, as some say, declare him deprived, of his Apostolic See.” (The Catholic Controversy, Tan Books, pp. 305-306)

Shannon and Siscoe argue that St. Francis de Sales was teaching that the Church must deprive or declare the pope deprived before a pope loses his office. THIS IS EXACTLY THE SAME ARGUMENT MY BROTHER USED LAST YEAR. Below was one of my explanations to him.

If the pope no longer has the dignity of pope and is no longer Catholic and is out of the Church, what is St. Francis de Sales saying the Church must deprive him from if his apostolic see has already been lost? WAS ST. FRANCIS DE SALES AN IDIOT? No, because the natural occurrence of events should follow. If a pope loses his office, the Church shouldn’t continue to recognize him as pope and allow him to occupy the Lateran. The Church should deprive him and declare him deprived, of course. That doesn’t mean that the antipope must continue as pope UNTIL the Church deprives him and declare him deprived.”

Shannon and Siscoe must think St. Francis de Sales was an idiot, too!

Throughout both interviews, ole Shannon snickers in the background because he thinks that he and Siscoe keep providing the answers against sedevacantism, only they make themselves look like buffoons in the process.

10: Shannon and Siscoe imply that the conciliar popes have not crossed any line of manifest heresy. Oh really?

Ratzinger rejects the Catholic Church’s teaching on inter-religious worship which has more historical and papal teachings than artificial contraception which has the same level of authority. THESE TWO ISSUES ARE ON THE EXACT SAME LEVEL OF MORAL TEACHINGS OF THE CHURCH! Would you follow Ratzinger if he believed artificial contraception was good and promoted it as good?

Ratzinger rejects the teaching of the Catholic Church that “The Church of Christ IS the Catholic Church” as taught by Pope Pius XII and the entire history of the Church. The word “subsists” automatically implies that it’s not the same. Again, Ratzinger says the “Church of Christ extends much further than the Catholic Church.” THIS IS AS MUCH A HERESY AS SAYING MARY WAS NOT IMMACULATELY CONCEIVED!

Ratzinger believes that it’s okay for women/girls to assist at the altar during mass. This has been condemned as intrinsically evil by Pope Gelasius, Innocent IV, and Benedict XV. It’s impossible for a true pope to believe as good the intrinsically evil practices of women serving at the altar, JUST AS it is impossible for a true pope to believe as good the intrinsically evil practice of homosexuality. Would you leave Rome if pope Ratzinger said homosexuality is okay? If so, then you must leave for saying it’s okay for women to serve at the altar.

I know how upsetting this is. I used to go to mass daily for over 15 years. I couldn’t eat or sleep properly for a week after I realized all this stuff!



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John Salza, “Fr.” Brian Harrison, Tim Staples, and our local so-called traditional “Fr.” John Rickert FSSP attempt to debunk Sedevacantism by using Canon Law.

You’ll find them using such laws as Canon 2232 of the 1917 Code.

The problem with using any canon law to debunk sedevacantism is due to the fact that simple logic dictates that a non-member of the Catholic Church cannot be the head of the Catholic Church as pope.

Formal heretics are non-Catholics.

Non-Catholics are not members of the Catholic Church.

When “Fr.” Rickert was asked if a formal heretic is a non-Catholic, he played games and responded, “Define a non-Catholic.” So his silly game was played. When he was given the answer, “A non-Catholic is someone who is not a member of the Church.” he never replied back. He saw quite clearly where the questioning was going, and he didn’t want to go there.

Those antisedevacanters, such as “Fr.” Rickert, that use canon laws as 2232, are making the argument that a formal heretic can, at the same time, be pope. In other words, they are arguing by using canon law to justify that a non-member of the Church can, at the same time, be head of the Church.

This is contrary to the Divine law of God and simple logic. Canon law cannot be used against Divine law as they are doing.

Why do antisedevacanters use such arguments?

They hope to win the debate by default because they simply cannot defend their “pope” as pope any other way.

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First Timothy 2

12: Let the women learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. 13: For Adam was first formed, then Eve. 14: And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. 15: Notwithstanding she shall be saved in [through the] child-bearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.

After teaching how a woman should dress in appearance, St. Paul proceeds to explain how a woman is to behave in respect to men. Verse 12 is a continuation of I Cor. 14:34-35. And women are to be silent in the churches; utterance is not permitted to them; let them keep their rank, as the law tells them: 35: if they have any question to raise, let them ask their husbands at home. That a woman should make her voice heard in the church is not seemly. Knox commentary: ‘Such is the teaching I give in all the churches’; according to most Greek manuscripts, the sense is rather ‘all the churches of the saints give proof of it’. The Haydock Bible footnotes verse 12: St. Paul only means in public

The Natural and Divine law has made women subject to men. In verse 13 of I Tim., St. Paul uses a natural law argument that this teaching of God is built into creation which transcends time and culture. The natural order of creation is woman comes after man. This natural law is written on our hearts, too. Every society and culture has known and practiced this understanding. “To the woman he said, “I will greatly multiply your pain in childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children, yet your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you.” (Gen. 3:16)

St. Paul continues in I Cor. 11:7-10: A man has no need to veil his head; he is God’s image, the pride of his creation, whereas the wife is the pride of her husband. 8 (The woman takes her origin from the man, not the man from the woman;[3] 9 and indeed, it was not man that was created for woman’s sake, but woman for man’s.) 10 And for that reason the woman ought to have authority over her head, for the angels’ sake.

The Catholic Encyclopedia: Women in canon law: “Ulpian (Dig., I, 16, 195) gives a celebrated rule of law which most canonists have embodied in their works: “Women are ineligible to all civil and public offices, and therefore they cannot be judges, nor hold a magistracy, nor act as lawyers, judicial intercessors, or procurators.” Public offices are those in which public authority is exercised; civil offices, those connected otherwise with municipal affairs. The reason given by canonists for this prohibition is not the levity, weakness, or fragility of the female sex, but the preservation of the modesty and dignity peculiar to woman.”

For Verse 14 there’s another detail for the silence of women. Notice who it was that was deceived: The woman, said Adam, whom thou gavest me to be my companion, she it was who offered me fruit from the tree, and so I came to eat it. 13 Then the Lord God said to the woman, What made thee do this? The serpent, she said, beguiled me, and so I came to eat. (Gen. 3:12:13.)

Adam ate of the tree out of persuasion of his wife, whereas Eve ate out of deception of a serpent, a creature lower in creation.

And with that the woman, who saw that the fruit was good to eat, saw, too, how it was pleasant to look at and charmed the eye, took some fruit from the tree and ate it; and she gave some to her husband, and he ate with her. (Gen. 3:6.)

Eve ate to satisfy her appetite for pleasure, whereas Adam ate to please his wife. Since Eve represents all women, St. John Chrysostom rightly states, “The woman taught once, and ruined all. On this account therefore he says, let her not teach.”

Verse 15 indicates that women will be saved through proper behavior becoming of a woman.

St. Paul provides more information about the relationship between men and women. Wives, be subject to your husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. 24 As the church is subject to Christ, so let wives also be subject in everything to their husbands. (Eph. 5:22-24.)

It is abundantly clear that women’s subordinate relationship to men within Church and family life is intrinsic to the order of creation.

The modern world rejects I Tim. 2 by explaining away the clear meaning and making common laws that contradict the natural law. Churches, households, companies, businesses, governments, militaries, and countries reject by law the Word of God written on our hearts. Those same laws that give women equal and higher authority to men is defended by most who call themselves Christian!

Interesting, homosexuality is now a hot topic in today’s society, and those who reject the natural and divine law on man’s authority over woman’s are in the same boat as those who reject the condemnation of homosexuality. “For male and female he created them” (Gen. 1:27) but “Adam was formed first, then Eve.” (I Tim. 2:13) The same argument is used for both topics.

Arguments have been made on the exceptions to the rule, such as Old Testament Judge Deborah, European queens Isabella or Mary, or Our Lady Queen of Heaven and Earth over angels and men. While there are exceptions to many laws, the exceptions aren’t the norm and that’s the problem. As soon as one cries what about this or that, so that the law or teaching doesn’t apply here and there, it soon becomes meaningless and applies nowhere.

Even up till the early 20th century, women weren’t allowed to vote. It was understood that giving women the right to vote gives women the same authority as men.

Modernists refuse to accept that truth is immutable. Therefore, modernists reject the immutable laws of God and decide against God’s laws in the spirit of the New Age, which is really the spirit of antichrist.

Rejection of natural and divine laws is antichrist since the rejection of God’s laws is a rejection of Christ, and those that do so place themselves in the place of Christ as one who decides what shall be Law.

The rejection of First Timothy 2:12 is part of the Great Apostasy foretold in Scripture. The abominable practices of women voting, running for office, holding positions of authority not only in government but also in the courts, military, police, etc. are heralded as the great advancement of women. Anyone who opposes the modernists will be called haters, sexists, and will be terminated from work, arrested, and jailed.

Remember that the distinguishing character mark of the beast on the hand and forehead of people (Apoc. 13:16) represents what man does in action through work and what man believes and thinks. They will be one with the beast. Those who refuse to accept the mark will not be able buy, sell, or interact normally with society because society is part and parcel with the beast.

Hopefully, this article will make a few men and women aware that they are actually participating as antichrist and cease in their damnable beliefs and activities.

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The argument against sedevacantism about Papal law on the election of a pope is a straw-man and invalid.

The argument in a nutshell states that the law of Pope Pius XII requires that only cardinals can elect the pope. Since sedevacantism holds that the cardinal elect is extinct, then there can be no future papal election thus Vatican One’s declaration of perpetual successors fails. Therefore, the cardinal elect cannot become extinct.

Vatican 1 Canon stated: “if anyone then says that it is not from the institution of Christ the Lord Himself, or by Divine right that the blessed Peter has perpetual successors in the primacy over the universal Church . . . let him be anathema.”

Cardinal Billot stated: “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

His statement must be accepted for all time because no Church law or the inability to follow the law under normal circumstances can prohibit this Divine right.

It is by Divine right that Peter has perpetual successors even if the laws of the Church under normal conditions can’t be applied.

The rule of Pius XII will always apply unless a future pope overturns it, or if it can’t be applied.

The pope would elect new cardinals if they became extinct, but if they became extinct during an interregnum, then what?

Imagine if for some reason a pope suddenly died, and during the conclave, a Muslim terrorist bombed the Sistine Chapel and killed all the cardinals. Does this mean we can’t have a future pope since only cardinals can elect one? No, because Church law would only apply when there are cardinals. If they became extinct, then by Divine law, the rest of the Church, be that of bishops, priests, lay, etc. could still elect a future pope since as the Dogma of Vatican 1 says, it is by Divine right that Peter has successors. This Divine law of God would supply the rule of an election of a pope by non-cardinals in the extreme circumstances. To deny this is to deny the Dogma.

Rev. Brian Harrison, and even Patrick Madrid teach that it would be impossible for a terrorist to annihilate the cardinal elect. That such an event would make the Gates of Hell prevail. Where do they get this teaching? Low and behold, they base it on the law of Pius XII that only cardinals can elect a pope, thus they actually create a new doctrine and deny the dogma.

Pope Pius XII never intended for his law to be binding in the absolute sense under all conditions.

Anti-sedevacanters are looking for an argument against sedevacantism so that they don’t have to defend the apostasies of their popes.

Their hope is that if you can debunk sedevacantism with an argument that cardinals can’t become extinct, their position is automatically correct.

If you can really debunk sedevacantism, I submit that you can really debunk Christianity.


Steven Speray
All Saints Day, 2010

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