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Archive for the ‘Sedevacantism’ Category

In a 1973 movie called The Conflict, a modernist priest played by Martin Sheen asks a traditional priest (played by Trevor Howard) how do we begin to define heresy today. The traditionalist gives the answer for the modernist by stating, “yesterday’s orthodoxy is today’s heresy.”

Never has this statement been truer than in today’s religion headed by “Pope” Francis.

In “Why Sedevacantism” I showed that if Vatican 2 is correct that “religious communities are entitled to teach and give witness to their faith publicly in speech and writing without hindrance” [DH 4] then Martin Luther would have been right when he declared “that heretics be burned is against the will of the Spirit” and Pope Leo X and his papal bull condemning Luther’s teaching would be heretical.

On Aug. 2, 2018, the Feast of St. Alphonsus Liguori, “Pope” Francis has now, once again, officially recognized Martin Luther’s teaching as orthodoxy by ordering the Catechism of the Catholic Church be changed on capital punishment. [1] (Catechism change and the Letter from the CDF.)

The key changes of the 1992 Catechism footnote an Oct. 11, 2017 address from “Pope” Francis to an audience of cardinals, bishops, priests, nuns, catechists, and ambassadors from many countries on the 25th anniversary of the promulgation of the catechism. The Catechism now implies that the Catholic Church in the past was ignorant to the dignity of the person after very serious crimes and attacked that dignity out of its ignorance.

In the Oct. address, Francis declared the death penalty is “contrary to the Gospel,” “is an inhuman measure,” “is inadmissible because it attacks the inviolability and the dignity of the person” stressing that “here we are not in the presence of any contradiction with past teaching,” that this, “law of progress” he said, “appertains to the peculiar condition of the truth revealed in its being transmitted by the church, and does not at all signify a change of doctrine. One cannot conserve the doctrine without making it progress, nor can one bind it to a rigid and immutable reading without humiliating the Holy Spirit.” [2]

If only Luther could have lived to see this moment when Rome would say he was right all along. Why Luther would be considered a good Catholic today as even “Pope Saint” John Paul II paid homage to him and the Vatican said he was a “witness to the gospel.” In fact, if Luther lived today, he wouldn’t be so well-known. He’d fit right in with the Novus Ordo establishment.

It really is astounding how Protestant Rome is becoming. One of the doctrines held by the earliest Protestants (Anabaptists) was the unlawfulness of capital punishment. In De Laicis, Doctor of the Church, St. Robert Bellarmine called this a “chief heretical belief” of the Protestant sects. [3]

Doctor of the Church, St. Alphonsus Liguori taught, “It is lawful to put a man to death by public authority: it is even a duty of princes and of judges to condemn to death criminals who deserve it; and it is the duty of the officers of justice to execute the sentence; God himself wishes malefactors to be punished.” [4]

The Roman Catechism of the Council of Trent declared, “Execution Of Criminals: Another kind of lawful slaying belongs to the civil authorities, to whom is entrusted power of life and death, by the legal and judicious exercise of which they punish the guilty and protect the innocent. The just use of this power, far from involving the crime of murder, is an act of paramount obedience to this Commandment which prohibits murder. The end of the Commandment¬ is the preservation and security of human life. Now the punishments inflicted by the civil authority, which is the legitimate avenger of crime, naturally tend to this end, since they give security to life by repressing outrage and violence. Hence these words of David: In the morning I put to death all the wicked of the land, that I might cut off all the workers of iniquity from the city of the Lord.” [5]

If this is not enough, I provide more information on how the Church ordered The Death Penalty for Sodomites.

Even when we see a clear reversal of Church teaching on morality, two well-known radio hosts on Relevant Radio, “Catholic” apologist Patrick Madrid and “Monsignor” Stuart Swetland insist that Francis is only making a pastoral change with no actual change in Church doctrine or is just applying a development of doctrine. You can hear the podcasts by clicking on the links provided at the footnote. [6] I haven’t listened to any other talk shows from Relevant Radio to see how they are dealing with this, but I can figure it’s probably all the same.

On July 3, 1907, Pope St. Pius X condemned as an error of the Modernist in Lamentabili, “53. The organic constitution of the Church is not immutable; but Christian society, just as human society, is subject to perpetual evolution.” Is this not what “Pope” Francis is advocating with his statements? Is this not what Madrid and Swetland are defending when they say that we have to understand this in “Francis’ way” or imply that doctrines can develop in the reverse?

It all comes down to the fact that all of them are modernists in the truest sense of the word, for they all hold that “Yesterday’s orthodoxy is today’s heresy.”

 

 

Footnotes:

[1] The Death Penalty

“2267. Recourse to the death penalty on the part of legitimate authority, following a fair trial, was long considered an appropriate response to the gravity of certain crimes and an acceptable, albeit extreme, means of safeguarding the common good.

Today, however, there is an increasing awareness that the dignity of the person is not lost even after the commission of very serious crimes. In addition, a new understanding has emerged of the significance of penal sanctions imposed by the state.

Lastly, more effective systems of detention have been developed, which ensure the due protection of citizens but, at the same time, do not definitively deprive the guilty of the possibility of redemption.

Consequently, the Church teaches, in the light of the Gospel, that “the death penalty is inadmissible because it is an attack on the inviolability and dignity of the person”, [1] and she works with determination for its abolition worldwide.
_______________________________________
[1] FRANCIS, Address to Participants in the Meeting organized by the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelization, 11 October 2017: L’Osservatore Romano, 13 October 2017, 5.”

“CONGREGATION FOR THE DOCTRINE OF THE FAITH
Letter to the Bishops regarding the new revision of number 2267 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church on the death penalty

1. The Holy Father Pope Francis, in his Discourse on the occasion of the twenty-fifth anniversary of the publication of the Apostolic Constitution Fidei depositum, by which John Paul II promulgated the Catechism of the Catholic Church, asked that the teaching on the death penalty be reformulated so as to better reflect the development of the doctrine on this point that has taken place in recent times.[1] This development centers principally on the clearer awareness of the Church for the respect due to every human life. Along this line, John Paul II affirmed: “Not even a murderer loses his personal dignity, and God himself pledges to guarantee this.”[2]
2. It is in the same light that one should understand the attitude towards the death penalty that is expressed ever more widely in the teaching of pastors and in the sensibility of the people of God. If, in fact, the political and social situation of the past made the death penalty an acceptable means for the protection of the common good, today the increasing understanding that the dignity of a person is not lost even after committing the most serious crimes, the deepened understanding of the significance of penal sanctions applied by the State, and the development of more efficacious detention systems that guarantee the due protection of citizens have given rise to a new awareness that recognizes the inadmissibility of the death penalty and, therefore, calling for its abolition.
3. In this development, the teaching of the Encyclical Letter Evangelium vitæ of John Paul II is of great importance. The Holy Father enumerated among the signs of hope for a new culture of life “a growing public opposition to the death penalty, even when such a penalty is seen as a kind of ‘legitimate defense’ on the part of society. Modern society in fact has the means of effectively suppressing crime by rendering criminals harmless without definitively denying them the chance to reform.”[3] The teaching of Evangelium vitæ was then included in the editio typica of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. In it, the death penalty is not presented as a proportionate penalty for the gravity of the crime, but it can be justified if it is “the only practicable way to defend the lives of human beings effectively against the aggressor,” even if in reality “cases of absolute necessity for suppression of the offender today are very rare, if not practically non-existent” (n. 2267).
4. John Paul II also intervened on other occasions against the death penalty, appealing both to respect for the dignity of the person as well as to the means that today’s society possesses to defend itself from criminals. Thus, in the Christmas Message of 1998, he wished “the world the consensus concerning the need for urgent and adequate measures … to end the death penalty.”[4] The following month in the United States, he repeated, “A sign of hope is the increasing recognition that the dignity of human life must never be taken away, even in the case of someone who has done great evil. Modern society has the means of protecting itself, without definitively denying criminals the chance to reform. I renew the appeal I made most recently at Christmas for a consensus to end the death penalty, which is both cruel and unnecessary.”[5]
5. The motivation to be committed to the abolition of the death penalty was continued with the subsequent Pontiffs. Benedict XVI recalled “the attention of society’s leaders to the need to make every effort to eliminate the death penalty.”[6] He later wished a group of the faithful that “your deliberations will encourage the political and legislative initiatives being promoted in a growing number of countries to eliminate the death penalty and to continue the substantive progress made in conforming penal law both to the human dignity of prisoners and the effective maintenance of public order.”[7]
6. In this same prospective, Pope Francis has reaffirmed that “today capital punishment is unacceptable, however serious the condemned’s crime may have been.”[8] The death penalty, regardless of the means of execution, “entails cruel, inhumane, and degrading treatment.”[9] Furthermore, it is to be rejected “due to the defective selectivity of the criminal justice system and in the face of the possibility of judicial error.”[10] It is in this light that Pope Francis has asked for a revision of the formulation of the Catechism of the Catholic Church on the death penalty in a manner that affirms that “no matter how serious the crime that has been committed, the death penalty is inadmissible because it is an attack on the inviolability and the dignity of the person.”[11]
7. The new revision of number 2267 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, approved by Pope Francis, situates itself in continuity with the preceding Magisterium while bringing forth a coherent development of Catholic doctrine.[12] The new text, following the footsteps of the teaching of John Paul II in Evangelium vitæ, affirms that ending the life of a criminal as punishment for a crime is inadmissible because it attacks the dignity of the person, a dignity that is not lost even after having committed the most serious crimes. This conclusion is reached taking into account the new understanding of penal sanctions applied by the modern State, which should be oriented above all to the rehabilitation and social reintegration of the criminal. Finally, given that modern society possesses more efficient detention systems, the death penalty becomes unnecessary as protection for the life of innocent people. Certainly, it remains the duty of public authorities to defend the life of citizens, as has always been taught by the Magisterium and is confirmed by the Catechism of the Catholic Church in numbers 2265 and 2266.
8. All of this shows that the new formulation of number 2267 of the Catechism expresses an authentic development of doctrine that is not in contradiction with the prior teachings of the Magisterium. These teachings, in fact, can be explained in the light of the primary responsibility of the public authority to protect the common good in a social context in which the penal sanctions were understood differently, and had developed in an environment in which it was more difficult to guarantee that the criminal could not repeat his crime.
9. The new revision affirms that the understanding of the inadmissibility of the death penalty grew “in the light of the Gospel.”[13] The Gospel, in fact, helps to understand better the order of creation that the Son of God assumed, purified, and brought to fulfillment. It also invites us to the mercy and patience of the Lord that gives to each person the time to convert oneself.
10. The new formulation of number 2267 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church desires to give energy to a movement towards a decisive commitment to favor a mentality that recognizes the dignity of every human life and, in respectful dialogue with civil authorities, to encourage the creation of conditions that allow for the elimination of the death penalty where it is still in effect.
The Sovereign Pontiff Francis, in the Audience granted to the undersigned Secretary of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith on 28 June 2018, has approved the present Letter, adopted in the Ordinary Session of this Congregation on 13 June 2018, and ordered its publication.
Rome, from the Office of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, 1 August 2018, Memorial of Saint Alphonsus Liguori.
Luis F. Card. Ladaria, S.I.
Prefect
X Giacomo Morandi
Titular Archbishop of Cerveteri
Secretary

[2] https://www.americamagazine.org/faith/2017/10/11/pope-francis-death-penalty-contrary-gospel

[3] St. Robert Bellarmine, De Laicis, “Among the chief heretical beliefs of the Anabaptists and Antitrinitarians of our time there is one that says that it is not lawful for Christians to hold magistracy and that among Christians there must not be power of capital punishment, etc., in any government, tribunal, or court.” (p. 5)

[4] St. Alphonsus Liguori (Instructions for the People on the Ten Commandments and on the Sacraments) https://archive.org/stream/alphonsusworks15liguuoft#page/n467/mode/1up

[5] http://www.cin.org/users/james/ebooks/master/trent/tcomm05.htm

[6] Listen to Patrick Madrid on the death penalty change here:
https://relevantradio.com/2018/08/the-patrick-madrid-show-august-3-2018-hour-1/
https://relevantradio.com/2018/08/the-patrick-madrid-show-august-3-2018-hour-2/
and
https://relevantradio.com/2018/08/the-patrick-madrid-show-august-7-2018-hour-2/
https://relevantradio.com/2018/08/the-patrick-madrid-show-august-7-2018-hour-3/

and Swetland can be heard here: https://relevantradio.com/2018/08/go-ask-your-father-for-august-7-2018/
https://relevantradio.com/2018/08/go-ask-your-father-for-august-2-2018/

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Holy Week is here and we’re about to see a bunch of R&R sedevacantists apply the law of epieikeia to the 1955 missal of Pope Pius XII. Their reasoning is simple. They have passed judgment on the decision of the Apostolic See and therefore have done exactly what is forbidden by the First Vatican Council when it infallibly declared:

  1. Since the Roman Pontiff, by the divine right of the apostolic primacy, governs the whole Church, we likewise teach and declare that he is the supreme judge of the faithful [52], and that in all cases which fall under ecclesiastical jurisdiction recourse may be had to his judgment [53]. The sentence of the Apostolic See (than which there is no higher authority) is not subject to revision by anyone, nor may anyone lawfully pass judgment thereupon [54].

Not only has Vatican I declared that its judgments are not to be judged, it also declared that:

  1. For in the Apostolic See the Catholic religion has always been preserved unblemished.
  2. That this See of St. Peter always remains unblemished by any error.

Therefore, no judgments can be made without rejecting the above two declarations. See Should the 1955 Missal Be Rejected?

Unfortunately, R&R sedevacantists have determined by private judgment against Pope Pius XII that the 1955 missal:

  1. Has false principles and practices.
  2. Marginalizes the Social Kingship of Christ.
  3. Is naturalistic.
  4. Undermines the proof of Christ’s Resurrection
  5. Undermines the proof of malice Jews had for Christ after His death.
  6. Leads to the New Mass.

R&R sedevacantists also reject the fast law of Pope Pius XII where he extended the Lenten fast on Holy Saturday to midnight and they reject the Feast of St. Joseph the Worker, the same pope established on May 1st of the liturgical calendar.

 

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Anti-sedevacantists get caught up on the issue of judging heretical popes and miss the fact that their popes have already done what’s impossible for true popes to do, such as legitimizing altar girls by law.

Two years ago, I published Altar Girls are Impossible for the True Catholic Church. In it, I answered the objections thereof.

In their heretical book, True or False Pope, John Salza and Robert Siscoe argued against my statement about what altar boys represent (where they conveniently left out my reasoning), but didn’t address my two main objections against altar girls, which are:

1. The Church’s repeated condemnations of altar girls when liturgical laws are not supposed to be harmful and evil.

2. Trent’s anathema to anyone who “says that the ceremonies, vestments, and outward signs, which the Catholic Church uses in the celebration of Masses, are incentives to impiety rather than the services of piety.”

Salza and Siscoe changed the argument by claiming that altar girls are not a universally binding law. In other words, because bishops don’t have to use girls, it’s not forced upon them. However, what they missed was that it’s a universal binding law that permits an evil practice. If the bishop permits it and the priest of the diocese practices it, it becomes binding on the laymen to accept the scandalous act as permissible by law. THAT’S THE POINT!

In their rebuttal to my argument, they actually proved my point when they stated, “we are not defending the practice of female altar servers. It is a scandalous practice and was rightly banned by the Church in the fourth century.”

By stating that altar girls are scandalous, Salza and Siscoe just admitted that altar girls are incentives to impiety rather than services of piety. It also means they reject the repeated papal teaching that laws can’t be harmful or evil!

Therefore, my argument still stands. Altar girls are impossible for the true Catholic Church. It is “one solid argument (perhaps the simplest) to prove sedevacantism.”

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One of the many images of “Pope” Paul VI wearing the Jewish Ephod in place of the Pectorial Cross. See Footnote on the significance of this symbol being worn by the Vatican 2 pope.

 

In reading through the Novus Ordo Watch’s News Digest, I came across this news item on how Paul VI will be the next Vatican 2 pope to be canonized. This comes as no surprise since the founder of new religion masquerading as Catholicism needs to be promoted to sainthood to bolster the legitimacy of the heretical religion. In canonizing the founders of the Vatican 2 religion, Benedict XVI and Francis I enforce the holiness of their founding work.

We see the real Catholic Church doing the same thing by canonizing the founders of the great orders in the Church such as Sts. Francis, Dominic, Ignatius, and Alphonsus Liguori. Joining orders founded by great saints are naturally encouraged because their orders are their holy works.

My point is that we want to imitate the lives of saints for the reasons they were made saints. The Franciscans, for example, embody the spirit of the life of St. Francis. The same goes for the Dominicans, Jesuits, and Redemptorists. Can you name one saint before Pope Pius XII who did wicked things after his conversion which would call into question whether he should be a saint at all? When we look at the lives of saints, we’re given examples on how to live as Catholics. We may not be able to do the extraordinary things like fly around and fast for 40 days three times a year as St. Joseph Cupertino but we can and should imitate their works of mercy.

Now we come to the “saints” of the Vatican 2 popes. Several years ago before John Paul II was canonized, I wrote a comparison of John Paul II with St. Patrick titled My Article The New Oxford Review Wouldn’t Publish.

Think about this. “SAINT” John Paul II practiced Zoroastrianism with a Priestess of that religion in 1986. He invited the worlds pagan leaders to pray to their false gods for world peace TWICE in 1986 and 2002.  He approved altar girls by law and said they “enrich the liturgy.” He stated in 2000, “May St. John the Baptist protect Islam.” In 1989, he denied the dogma on the literal descent of Christ into hell teaching that this phrase in the creed was metaphorical for death, the separation of body and soul.

Keeping in mind the imitation of the lives of saints, does this mean it should be okay and praiseworthy to worship in false temples, with false religions, love altar girls, pray that Islam is protected, and deny dogmas since a “saint” and “pope” did so until he died?

Now there’s going to be a “SAINT” Paul VI, who publicly wore the Jewish Ephod in place of the Pectorial Cross, denied a dozen dogmas, and he even placed his papal ring on the Anglican archbishop and invited him to bless the faithful in St. Peter’s Square.

I truly wonder what a person would have to do short of murder, adultery, and grand theft not to be qualified for sainthood in the Vatican 2 religion.

Since canonization is an infallible act by the pope who is not bound by any law to do so, how can one reconcile the canonizations of the Vatican 2 popes with the Catholic Faith? How can a Catholic in good faith recognize as saints men whose works were abominable, and if imitated, would be mortally sinful?

Footnote:

“Now then, the breastpiece was a prominent Jewish emblem. It symbolically represented the twelve tribes of carnal Israel at the ritual celebrations. Nothing, then, justifies the wearing of this ritual object by a Pope, its visible head of the new people of God, the children of the New Covenant. Even the fact that no previous Pope during the 2,000-year history of the Church has ever worn this ritualistic object of religious Judaism, seems to demonstrate that there is an absolute incompatibility between the profession of our Catholic Faith and the wearing of the ephod or “breastplate of judgment,” thoroughly described in the Exodus as characteristic and exclusive of the Levitical high priest.

Since Paul VI wore it publicly, we have the right, and moreover, a grave obligation of conscience to investigate why…John Baptist Montini wears the breastpiece because in his heart, rather than a Pope, he is a Levitical high priest. Consciously or unconsciously, only God knows, he seems to be associated with international Judaism, its mighty leaders, and its destructive tools of Communism and Masonry. On the other hand, in his genealogical line of ancestors we find actual roots of Jewish origin, just as in the cases of other cardinals, monsignors, and theologians who have masterminded this dreadful revolution in God’s Church.” (Fr. Joaquin Saenz Y Arriaga, S.J. PHD., The New Montinian Church, 1971 A.D. pp. 302-303)

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Dear Louie,

I want to briefly follow up my last letter on why I hold to the position of sedevacantism.

First, I’d like to re-present what I believe to be an irrefutable argument found here: The Gates of Hell and the Gates of Church.
This is a must read.

As I partly demonstrated in the above article, there’s a flip-side to the Chair of Peter argument which concerns the Church itself. Is the religion of the Vatican 2 popes the Catholic religion? See Missing the Marks: The Church of Vatican 2.

There are two basic questions we Catholics (who hold to sedevacantism) ask those who recognize but resist the Vatican 2 popes concerning the marks of the one true Church:

1. How can you claim oneness in faith when you’re divided doctrinally in faith as much as Protestantism?

I’m not talking about a material division where Catholics innocently and mistakenly believe falsely, but a formal division where those claiming to be Catholic knowingly reject doctrines, laws, practices, and a liturgy of their pope. Surely, you don’t believe in the same heresies as your pope?

2. How can you claim holiness in faith when you don’t acknowledge holiness in all promulgated doctrine, law, discipline, and liturgy? Surely, you don’t believe that holiness only concerns dogmas of the Faith?

Again, thank you for your time.

Sincerely,

Steven Speray

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Louie Verrecchio has recently posted a charitable article against the position of sedevacantism on his website AKA Catholic here.

I sent him the following letter to his contact information info@akacatholic.com

Dear Louie,

I appreciate the thoughtfulness and charitable article that you’ve written on your position against sedevacantism. I can even read a tone of love for your sedevacantist neighbors. Thank you!

I’m one that holds to the position of sedevacantism and have written many articles against Salza and Siscoe on the subject so I’m very familiar with the arguments. Please forgive me if my bluntness comes across as uncharitable. I don’t mean it that way at all.

I would like to note that when canon law was promulgated in the 20th century, the entire warning system to determine formal heresy exists only in the Penal Code. Popes don’t fall under this part of canon law, therefore, warnings against popes, are meaningless insofar as the law is concerned.

Even for clergy who do fall under the penal code, formal heresy is presumed by law. The canonists spell out when, how, and to whom warnings are given.As far as the law is concerned with popes and their office, canon 188.4 covers it. According to that law which is not a penalty, a pope who publicly defects from the faith which is defined by the law as public heresy or joining another religion, tacitly resigns from office WITHOUT declaration.

You state: It is now up to the so-called “proper authorities” to issue a formal declaration making this “known to all the Church” for precisely the reason given by Fr. Ballerini – “so that he might not cause damage to the rest” – and to go about making arrangements for a conclave to elect a new pope.

But hasn’t the rest already been damaged by the Vatican 2 popes? Heresy is everywhere and it all can be traced right back to the Vatican 2 popes with their decrees, practices, promotions, and omissions.

F.X. Wernz, P. Vidal (1943): “Through notorious and openly revealed heresy, the Roman Pontiff, should he fall into heresy, by that very fact is deemed to be deprived of the power of jurisdiction even before any declaratory judgment of the Church…” (Ius Canonicum. Rome: Gregorian 1943. 2:45.)

Udalricus Beste (1946): “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.  (Introductio in Codicem. 3rd ed. Collegeville: St. John’s Abbey Press 1946. Canon 221)

Again, Wernz/Vidal: The fourth opinion, with Suarez, Cajetan and others [John of St. Thomas, Fr. Laymann, etc.], contends that a Pope is not automatically deposed even for manifest heresy, but that he can and must be deposed by at least a declaratory sentence of the crime. “Which opinion in my judgment is indefensible” as Bellarmine teaches. Finally, there is the fifth opinion – that of Bellarmine himself – which was expressed initially and is rightly defended by Tanner and others as the best proven and the most common. For he who is no longer a member of the body of the Church, i.e. the Church as a visible society, cannot be the head of the Universal Church. But a Pope who fell into public heresy would cease by that very fact to be a member of the Church. Therefore he would also cease by that very fact to be the head of the Church.

Thank you for your time!

God bless you!

Steven Speray

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One of my biggest gripes attending daily novus ordo mass years ago, was the blatant rejection of canon law and the rubrics of the mass. I would meet with priests and hear their phony explanations and was told twice that the novelties came from Rome.

Once I investigated why inclusive language was being used at mass and found the non-inclusive words in the liturgical books penciled out and replaced, which is condemned by Canon 846 of the 1983 Code of Law. [1] The priests knew, the bishop knew, and the people didn’t care and it didn’t stop there.

It was commonplace to hear lay folk rejecting Catholic teachings on the Real Presence, papal infallibility and the condemnation of artificial contraception. I remember once when liberals were invited to speak against the all-male priesthood at the University of Kentucky campus church while supporting diocesan priests attended in civilian clothes. I had a heated public conversation with one of the priests over artificial contraception which he openly supported.

The disgusting pick-and-choose mentality was everywhere and it was facilitated by the very leaders of the diocese. Then I discovered that my diocese was just a microcosm of the entire novus ordo religion. The Tradition in Action website does a good job showing this fact here. As seen from the “Revolution Photos” Rome actively participates and encourages the widespread abuses.

We also see the nonsense with “Catholic” celebrities and politicians. “Catholic” politicians like Nancy Pelosi and Joe Biden openly promote abortion and homosexuality and are given communion each week in their “Catholic” churches.

Celebrities, such as Mark Wahlberg (who attends daily mass) makes movies so immoral he jokes about it at a family festival attended by “Pope” Francis as seen here.

Wahlberg is not alone. Look up other practicing “Catholic” celebrities and see how immoral their music, movies, and lifestyles are. Christina Aguilera, for instance, would pray and do the sign of the cross immediately before doing her immoral song and dance bit titled, Dirty.

If you say we’re all sinners and I’m being judgmental, you’d be missing the point. It’s one thing to sin, it’s quite another to think your sin is not sinful. It’s a pick-and-choose what is and isn’t sinful! “Pope” Francis is no exception. Where’s his condemnation on the immorality of his subject’s music, movies, or lifestyles? It appears he’s more concerned about those living in sin having the entitlement of receiving Communion. According to “Pope” Francis and his followers, it’s the sin of judgmentalism to openly condemn immorality.

On the other side of the spectrum, you have your conservative and traditional “Catholics” who know very well of the abuses and immoralities. Again, Tradition in Action is on the front-line rightly exposing the evils on their website.

However, they are not that far removed from their counterparts because they also pick and choose from their religion.

EWTN and Catholic Answers make excuses for their pope’s blasphemies and heresies and by doing so are just picking and choosing not to follow Christ and the Church while claiming to defend them.

The “traditionalists” such as the Remnant Newspaper, SSPX, and Tradition in Action pick and choose from their religion by ignoring and rejecting Vatican 2, the novus ordo mass, canonizations, apostolic exhortations, canon law, etc.

Their one common denominator is not that Francis is pope because some think Benedict XVI is still pope. Nope, the one common denominator is that sedevacantism is false.

What’s really comical is when you see people like John Salza and Robert Siscoe call their pope’s Amoris Laetitia heretical but then apply a 17th century theologian’s opinion as a dogmatic certainty that can’t be rejected even though many saints and canonists have done just that. You’ll never find them quoting as authoritative anything that came from the Vatican 2 popes, but sure enough, erroneous 17th century opinions are treated as infallible doctrines that must be professed to be Catholic. They expect to be heard and obeyed over their pope as the final interpreter of everything. Oh, and the Remnant Newspaper publishes and defends these two untrained knuckleheads as authorities over their pope.

What’s the point in believing only in the dogmas but rejecting encyclicals, apostolic constitutions, canon laws, etc.? It’s a pick-and-choose mentality, and it’s precisely this pick-and-choose mentality that makes the novel religion of “Pope” Francis divided in faith.

The first mark and Article of the Catholic Faith is ONENESS, which is a rejection of the pick-and-choose mentality. It’s all or nothing. Catholics are free to disagree on doctrines of opinions where the Church hasn’t settled the matter and therefore are not part of the Faith.

However, if you’re a subject to “Pope” Francis and you don’t hold all the doctrines on faith and morals he professes, you’re really professing your denial of the first Article of the Faith in practice. You’re as guilty of rejecting a dogma of the Faith as everyone else.

There’s no escaping it. The religion of “Pope” Francis is a cafeteria-styled religion in belief and practice. It fosters it in every way. You can even call an apostolic exhortation heretical and sign a public document saying so and the “pope” will do nothing, which apparently means you can even pick and choose what the “pope” teaches according to the “pope”. He obviously rejects the Article of Faith, but what difference does it make when you’re in a religion where you get to decide what is true?

 

 

Footnote

[1] Can. 846 §1. In celebrating the sacraments the liturgical books approved by competent authority are to be observed faithfully; accordingly, no one is to add, omit, or alter anything in them on one’s own authority.

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Novus Ordo Watch posts new video with the description: Either the Catholic teaching on the Papacy is false, or Jorge Bergoglio (“Pope Francis”) is not a valid Pope. The former is heresy; the latter is perhaps inconvenient but quite possible.

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One of the main arguments made by pseudo-traditional Catholics is that the heretical novus ordo mass, Second Vatican Council, etc. did not fall under the realm of infallibility. Therefore, the Church [that gave us these things] is not actually heretical. They can resist these abominations and remain in the same church because they weren’t imposed or binding. The Church is still holy.

If we follow this logic, then Protestantism is holy and not actually heretical because Protestants don’t even claim infallibility.

The absurdity is glaring. The Catholic Church can’t teach heresy in any capacity. If it could, it would be essentially no different than the Protestant/Eastern Orthodox religions.

Some Protestants pray the Creed each week saying they believe in “one, holy, catholic, and apostolic church,” but their meaning of those words differs from the Catholic Church’s understanding. Vatican 2’s definition is closer to the Protestant understanding. The only difference is that it declared “the one Church of Christ which in the Creed is professed as one, holy, catholic and apostolic…subsists in the Catholic Church” which alone has “the fullness of grace and truth.” The Protestant and Eastern Orthodox religions don’t have the fullness thereof. According to Vatican 2, the “Church of Christ” which includes Catholics, Protestants, and Eastern Orthodox is “one” even though formally divided. [1]

In principle, the pseudo-Traditional Catholic understanding is exactly like the Protestant/Vatican 2 understanding.

Although the “pope” (and most every bishop and priest) believes, promotes, and defends religious liberty, communicatio in sacris with non-Catholics, novus ordo mass, etc., the pseudo-traditionalists who vehemently oppose such things still believe they are one in faith with their pope and his faithful clergy. For them, formal division in dogma and divine law is canceled out because of their union with their pope or church. For Protestants, it’s canceled out because of their so-called union with Christ. For Vatican 2, it’s canceled out because of baptism.

The absurdity continues with the mark of holiness. For pseudo-traditionalists, heresy and abomination is canceled out because infallibility wasn’t used. For Protestants, it’s canceled out because sola scriptura is foundational. For Vatican 2, it’s canceled out because of the human condition which is fallen.

Whatever argument that’s employed by pseudo-traditionalists against sedevacantism, it always comes down to this: They want you to believe in the absurdity that oneness and holiness of the Church includes formal division, heresy, and abomination just like Protestantism and the teaching of Vatican 2.

 

 

Footnote:

[1] In an interview with the German newspaper, Frankfurter Allgemeine, Ratzinger, aka Benedict XVI, stated:

“When the Council Fathers replace the word ‘is,’ used by Pius XII, with the word ‘subsistit,’ they did so for a very precise reason. The concept expressed by ‘is’ (to be) is far broader than that expressed by ‘to subsist.’ ‘To subsist’ is a very precise way of being, that is, to be as a subject, which exists in itself. Thus the Council Fathers meant to say: the being of the Church as such extends much further than the Roman Catholic Church, but within the latter it acquires, in an incomparable way, the character of a true and proper subject.”

Avery Cardinal Dulles, a member of the International Theological Commission: The Church of Christ is not exclusively identical to the Roman Catholic Church.  It does indeed subsist in Roman Catholicism but it is also present in varying modes and degrees in other Christian communities.” (Toward the Church of the Third Millennium: Verso la Chiesa del Terzo Millennio, Brescia: Queriniana, 1979)

Fr. Edward Schillebeeckx, one of the main drafters of Vatican II documents, stated: “It is difficult to say that the Catholic Church is still one, Catholic, apostolic, when one says that the others (other Christian communities) are equally one, Catholic and apostolic, albeit to a lesser degree. —- at Vatican Council II, the Roman Catholic Church officially abandoned its monopoly over the Christian religion.”

To the contrary, Pope Pius XII repeatedly taught that “the Mystical Body of Christ and the Roman Catholic Church are one and the same thing.” (Mystici Corporis Christi, 1943, Humani Generis, #27, 1950.)

 

 

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On Friday, June 9, 2017, The Remnant Newspaper Blog posted John Salza’s, “Note to Sedevacantists: Heresy Does Not Automatically Sever One from the Church.” [1] In his 5,404 word article, Salza makes the biggest goofball argument against sedevacantism I’ve seen to date.

I would have made a comment on the Remnant blog, but they have a long history of not posting my comments. Therefore, I’m posting my own counterpoint article.

Salza begins his article by quoting the relevant teaching from Pope Pius XII:

For not every offense, although it may be a grave evil, is such as by its very own nature to sever a man from the Body of the Church, as does schism or heresy or apostasy.

In the past, Salza argued that the “offense,” which Pope Pius XII was referring should be translated “crime.” And that crime has to be established by the Church and only then is the person who committed the crime of heresy understood to be severed from the Body of the Church by its nature. Salza writes:

Pope Pius XII is referring to the “offense” or CRIME (not SIN) of heresy, which severs one from the Body of the Church, after the formal and material elements have been proven by the Church. After the crime has been established, the heretic is automatically severed from the BODY (not SOUL) of the Church without further declaration (although most theologians maintain that the Church must also issue a declaration of deprivation). [2]

I responded to that argument Feb. 19, 2016 in an article titled The Sin of Heresy – Why John Salza and Robert Siscoe Get It Wrong (Part II) .

Now Salza introduces a new argument that differs from his old argument:

We affirm that heresy, by its nature, severs one from the Church spiritually (quoad se), and also disposes one to be severed legally (quoad nos, by Church authorities). Said differently, heresy, by its nature, severs the spiritual bond formally, and the legal bond dispositively. As Van Noort said, “internal heresy, since it destroys that interior unity of faith from which unity of profession is born, separates one from the body of the Church dispositively, but not yet formally.” [3]

Salza quotes Van Noort and completely misrepresents him. Van Noort is not saying that external heresy separates one from the body of the Church dispositively. It’s the internal sin that does so. External heresy separates one from the Body of the Church formally and that’s the issue at hand. Pope Pius XII is not referring to the internal sin of heresy. Van Noort explains:

Public heretics (and a fortiori, apostates) are not members of the Church. They are not members because they separate themselves from the unity of Catholic faith and from the external profession of that faith. Obviously, therefore, they lack one of three factors—baptism, profession of the same faith, union with the hierarchy—pointed out by Pius XII as requisite for membership in the Church. The same pontiff has explicitly pointed out that, unlike other sins, heresy, schism, and apostasy automatically sever a man from the Church. “For not every sin, however grave and enormous it be, is such as to sever a man automatically from the Body of the Church, as does schism or heresy or apostasy” (MCC 30; italics ours).

By the term public heretics at this point we mean all who externally deny a truth (for example Mary’s Divine Maternity), or several truths of divine and Catholic faith, regardless of whether the one denying does so ignorantly and innocently (a merely material heretic), or willfully and guiltily (a formal heretic). It is certain that public, formal heretics are severed from the Church membership. It is the more common opinion that public, material heretics are likewise excluded from membership. Theological reasoning for this opinion is quite strong: if public material heretics remained members of the Church, the visibility and unity of Christ’s Church would perish. If these purely material heretics were considered members of the Catholic Church in the strict sense of the term, how would one ever locate the “Catholic Church”? How would the Church be one body? How would it profess one faith? Where would be its visibility? Where its unity? For these and other reasons we find it difficult to see any intrinsic probability to the opinion which would allow for public heretics, in good faith, remaining members of the Church. [4]

Where does Salza find words like spiritual and legal bond? It appears that he creates words to fit his understanding of the canonists and theologians. At least, you don’t see him quoting any of them using the phrase “legal bond.”

However, he lets us in on what he means by “legal bond.” Salza writes:

The Pope heretic is not a member of the Church as far as the substance and form [the spiritual bond] which constitute the members of the Church; but he is the head as far as the charge and action [the legal bond]

[O]ccult heretics are still of the Church, they are parts and members [the legal bond]… therefore the Pope who is an occult heretic is still Pope.

…but would still retain his jurisdiction by which he would influence the Church [the legal bond] in ruling it. Thus he would still be nominally the head of the Church, which he would still rule as head, [Then why does John Salza refuse to let Francis rule him?]though he would no longer be a member of Christ, because he would not receive that vital influx of faith from Christ [the spiritual bond], the invisible and primary head. Thus in quite an abnormal manner he would be in point of jurisdiction the head of the Church [the legal bond], though he would not be a member of it.

The quoad se/quoad nos distinction used by John of St. Thomas harmonizes perfectly with the spiritual/legal bond distinction we have discussed in this article (as well as the Body/Soul distinction used by Bellarmine and others that we did not address here). Those who are united to the Church quoad nos (according to us) remain legal members of the Church (and if they are clerics, they retain their jurisdiction), even if they are spiritually severed from the Church; whereas those who cease to be united to the Church quoad nos (i.e., those who have openly left the Church or who have been declared heretics), do not. Because God alone knows who truly possesses interior faith and are thereby united to the Church quoad se,[19] if only these individuals (i.e., those who possess interior faith) were members of the Church, the Church would not be a visible society (whose members could be known), but rather “an invisible Church of true believers, known to God alone” which is a Protestant heresy that the Sedevacantists have embraced. [This accusation will be answered at the end.]

I think we can safely say that Salza’s meaning behind “spiritual bond” is Soul of the Church and his meaning behind “legal bond” is Body of the Church where persons can operate with authority.

As I also demonstrated in my 2016 article, The Ecclesiastical Review and Msgr. Van Noort explain that Pope Pius XII was speaking about the public external sin of heresy and how this external sin of heresy severs one from the Body of the Church by its nature. The internal forum, the internal sin of heresy and and even the external sin of heresy if occult have never been the issue. The reason Salza keeps bringing it into the equation is to confuse and misrepresent our position while hiding his error on the subject.

Salza then misrepresents and misapplies the plain meaning behind Rev. Sylvester Berry’s teaching below…

A heretic is usually defined as a Christian, i.e., a baptized person, who holds a doctrine contrary to a revealed truth; but this definition is inaccurate, since it would make heretics of a large portion of the faithful. A doctrine contrary to a revealed truth is usually stigmatized as heretical, but a person who professes an heretical doctrine is not necessarily a heretic. Heresy, from the Greek hairesis, signifies a choosing; therefore a heretic is one who chooses for himself in matters of faith, thereby rejecting the authority of the Church established by Christ to teach all men the truths of revelation. (…) A person who submits to the authority of the Church and wishes to accept all her teachings, is not a heretic, even though he profess heretical doctrines through ignorance of what the Church really teaches; he implicitly accepts the true doctrine in his general intention to accept all that the Church teaches.”

After quoting Berry, Salza writes:

As even the Sedevacantists would be forced to concede, all the conciliar Popes acknowledged the Church as the infallible rule of Faith. This means that even if Modernism has so confused their minds that they professed errors or even heresies, this material profession itself would not have formally severed their external and legal bond to the Church (and which, of course, means they retained their office and jurisdiction).

A note to Salza: The church the conciliar popes acknowledge is not the Catholic Church. In fact, modernism is more than merely professing errors and even heresies. Modernism is the “Synthesis of all Heresies” so said Pope St. Pius X. The conciliar popes are practical atheists and don’t acknowledge an infallible rule of faith at all. To call the conciliar pope’s false profession of Faith “material” means they are ignorantly and innocently professing Modernists.

Because the hearts of man can’t be read by mortals, we can’t say that any pope has professed a heresy materially. We can only say he has professed heresy!

Unfortunately, Salza leaves out the rest of Fr. Berry’s teaching (just like he didn’t provide his readers the full scope of Msgr. Van Noort’s teaching). Berry and Van Noort completely undercut Salza’s entire article. Fr. Berry continued:

“A heretic is one who chooses for himself in matters of faith, thereby, rejecting the authority of the Church established by Christ to teach all men the truths of revelation. [Notice here that Berry is talking about rejecting the teaching authority of the Church, not simply the profession of a heretical doctrine.] He rejects the authority of the Church by following his own judgment or by submitting to an authority other than that established by Christ. A person who submits to the authority of the Church and wishes to accept all her teachings, is not a heretic, even though he profess heretical doctrines through IGNORANCE of what the Church really teaches.” [5]

The SIN of heresy that severs one from the Church by its nature as Pope Pius XII taught in MCC is absent when the heresy professed is done through ignorance when that person wishes to accept all the Church’s teachings. However, that sin can be either occult or public which leads to different conclusions with his membership either in the Body or Soul of the Church.

Berry went on to say:

“A person may reject the teaching authority of the Church knowingly and willingly, or he may do it through ignorance. In the first case he is a formal heretic, guilty of grievous sin; in the second case, he is a material heretic, free from guilty. Both formal and material heresy may be manifest or occult. Heresy is manifest when publicly known to such an extent that its existence could be proved in a court of law; it is occult if not externally manifested by word or act, or if not sufficiently public to allow proof of its existence in court.

EXCLUDED FROM MEMBERSHIP. Manifest heretics and schismatics are excluded from membership in the Church. Heretics separated themselves from the unity of faith and worship; schismatics from the unity of government, and both reject the authority of the Church.  So far as exclusion from the Church is concerned, it matters not whether the heresy or schism be formal or material. Those born and reared in heresy or schism may be sincere in their belief and practice, yet they publicly and willingly reject the Church and attach to sects opposed to her; they are not guilty of sin in the matter, but they are not members of the Church. For this reason, the Church makes no distinction between formal and material heresy when receiving converts into her fold.

There is no need to adduce arguments from Scripture or tradition for a truth that is practically self-evident. St. Jerome says:  “An adulterer, a homicide, and other sinners are driven from the Church by the priests (I.e., by excommunication); but heretics pass sentence upon themselves, leaving the Church by their own free-will.” [Notice that heretics have left the Church which is the definition of defection of faith. Joining another sect is not necessary as Very Rev. H. A. Ayrinhac taught in his “General Legislation in the New Code of Canon Law” on Can. 188.4.] 19 St. Augustine gives expression to the same doctrine: “If you do not wish to belong to the Church,…separate yourself from her members, put yourselves off from her body. But why should I now urge them to leave the Church, since they have already done this? They are heretics, and therefore already out.”

Rev. Berry’s teaching says it all. The heretics Fr. Berry is talking about as being excluded from membership in the Church, regardless of whether they’re innocent or guilty of the sin of heresy, are those who “reject the teaching authority of the Church”, which would mean Protestants, etc., not simply Catholics who happen to say something heretical without meaning to go against the teaching authority of the Church.

Now getting back to Salza’s statement below…

The quoad se/quoad nos distinction used by John of St. Thomas harmonizes perfectly with the spiritual/legal bond distinction we have discussed in this article (as well as the Body/Soul distinction used by Bellarmine and others that we did not address here). Those who are united to the Church quoad nos (according to us) remain legal members of the Church (and if they are clerics, they retain their jurisdiction), even if they are spiritually severed from the Church; whereas those who cease to be united to the Church quoad nos (i.e., those who have openly left the Church or who have been declared heretics), do not. Because God alone knows who truly possesses interior faith and are thereby united to the Church quoad se,[19] if only these individuals (i.e., those who possess interior faith) were members of the Church, the Church would not be a visible society (whose members could be known), but rather “an invisible Church of true believers, known to God alone” which is a Protestant heresy that the Sedevacantists have embraced.

We sedevacantists don’t recognize that the Visible Church is made up of members with the interior faith only. Where did he come up with that nonsense? It’s as if Salza has never read or tried to understand our position. In fact, it’s Salza’s position that is reminiscent of the Protestant heresy because his position is that you can profess any and every heresy under the sun and still be considered a member of the Church unless declared a heretic by authorities. Salza’s visible church is made up of individuals that are divided in faith.

So, if Salza is looking for a Protestant church, he needs to look no further than the institution headed by Jorge Bergoglio, where anything goes, as long as it’s not Catholic.

 

Footnotes:

[1] http://remnantnewspaper.com/web/index.php/fetzen-fliegen/item/3232-note-to-sedevacantists-heresy-does-not-automatically-sever-one-from-the-church

[2] John Salza Responds to Another Sedevacantist

[3]http://remnantnewspaper.com/web/index.php/fetzen-fliegen/item/3232-note-to-sedevacantists-heresy-does-not-automatically-sever-one-from-the-church

[4] Dogmatic Theology Volume II: Christ’s Church, Van Noort, p. 241-242

[5] Rev. Sylvester Berry’s Church of Christ, p 128:

 

 

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