A brief papal reminder of the Church’s radically missionary nature…

“There is no need to insist how foreign it is to the virtue of charity, which embraces both God and men, for the members of Christ’s Church not to think of those unfortunate souls who live in error outside the Fold. Surely the obligation of charity, which binds us to God, demands not only that we strive to increase by every means within our power the number of those who adore Him ‘in spirit and in truth’ but also that we try to bring under the rule of the gentle Christ as many other men as possible in order that ‘the profit of his blood’ may be the more and more fruitful and that we may make ourselves the more acceptable to Him to Whom nothing can possibly be more pleasing than that ‘men should be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth.'”*

* Pius XI, Rerum ecclesiae, 28 Feb. 1926

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And he’s not a sedevacantist because…?

 The following are a few remarks written by an author I discovered only days ago. Just what was Vatican II?

 ^ The Dawning of Apostasy, p. xi

The immaculate Bride of Christ was despoiled and handed over to enemies at Vatican II? What is this “other hand” which wielded so much power at that Council? And how could the Vicar of Christ play pattycake with it to the bitter end?

  ^ From Some Fissure, p. ix

A quest to be united with the world? Was that the true aim of Vatican II? Plus: doubts about who was really “at the helm” at Vatican II (and, by extension, since it)?

  ^ From Some Fissure, p. x

Modernist pirates seized control of the Barque of Peter at Vatican II? And the saintly, misunderstood Pope Paul VI went along with the whole thing?

  ^ From Some Fissure, p. xi

Destructive Modernists succeeded in embedding anti-Catholic ambiguity in the solemn declarations of an ecumenical council? And Paul VI lent the authority of his name to it all?

  ^ From Some Fissure, p.xii

Paul VI envisioned a small remnant who would resist the “non-Catholic way of thinking” which triumphed at Vatican II? How odd….

 ^ From Some Fissure, p. xiii

You mean both Paul VI and John Paul II spoke of an apocalyptic confrontation between the true Chruch and an impostor Church, a conflict which was, by all appearances, ushered in during the time of Vatican II? But that’s crazy talk!

+ + +

I hope the problem is as evident to you as it is to me.

The author, David Martin, embraces all the popes since the Fecund Second Vatican Conchshell Council as genuine Vicars of Christ. And yet, at the same time, he regards the entire (papally ratified and promoted) Conciliar achievement as a scandalous corruption of Catholic teaching by way of ambiguous compromise at best, or as an outright Satanic coup d’état at worst. Lament though he may at how cunningly Paul VI was beguiled by Modernist/ Masonic/ Communist infiltrators, Martin ultimately concedes that Pope Paul VI ratified the Conciliar putsch with his sacrosanct signature. Much like Pope Honorius I, then, Paul VI will be forever regarded as a “helper of heresy” who followed the ecclesiological equivalent of Sergius in their subtle errors. Well, to be more precise, he’s to be so regarded only if one also regards the Second Vatican Council as the work of the enemies of the Faith. If, by contrast, one equanimously embraces the Conciliar novelties, then one can only applaud Paul VI for ratifying and enforcing them with such apparent zeal.

Either way, as I went to great lengths to show in my post about being “between a Rock and a dark place,” one must make a choice. One must either embrace the Conciliar reforms as the work of our legitimate pastors, whereupon one must render un-kvetching submission of mind and heart to the ongoing Conciliar Project, or one must recognize the patent rupture with Catholic Tradition which the Conciliar reforms embody, and reject them as the the perifidious fruit of usurpers of the magisterial and canonical machinery.

The two books by Mr. Martin which I have cited in this post were published in 2013, apparently while Benedict XVI was still pope. I’m curious to know how Mr. Martin, whose zeal for orthodoxy seems as genuine as it is deep, regards the pontificate of Francis, though I have yet to explore the matter. Meanwhile, the dilemma stands: take the red pill and clap along with our Conciliar shepherds, or take the blue pill and reject the fruit as vehemently as one must reject the seeds–as vehemently as one must reject the sowers of such seed. As Our Lord said, Let your Yes be Yes, and your No be No.

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Madlibbing with Modernism…

“Many __________ of the present day are little concerned about [the marks of the true Church]; the question of deciding between true and false in religion never occurs to them. They hold that all churches are equally true, since all taken collectively constitute the Church Catholic with which a man may be united by a good life even though he belong to no particular church organization. It is a matter of supreme indifference whether a person belong to one church or another; in fact, it seems to matter little whether he belong to any church. Moreover, they hold that every man enjoys full liberty to worship God according to the dictates of his own conscience. Hence every man is free to select the church that suits his fancy or convenience…. God, it seems, has no voice in the matter; He must be content to receive such worship as man sees fit to render Him. It is evident that marks for recognizing the true Church have no place in such a system.”

Now, for $800 bollars, fill in the blank!

A. adolescents

B. Protestants

C. Catholics

D. bishops

BONUS QUESTION: When was this passage penned?

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Rome speaks! A rousing papal defense of the indissolubility of marriage!

“The decision of lay tribunals and of Catholic assemblies by which the nullity of marriages is chiefly declared, and the dissolution of their bond attempted, can have no strength and absolutely no force in the sight of the Church…. Those pastors who would approve these nuptials by their presence and confirm them with their blessing would commit a very grave fault and would betray their sacred ministry. For they should not be called nuptials, but rather adulterous unions….”*

* Pius VII (r. 1800-1823), from the Brief to Charles of Dalberg, Archbishop of Mainz (November 8, 1803)

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Between a Rock and a dark place…

[The following began as a reply to an essay by Brian Miles at One Peter Five. It quickly became very lengthy and I have been encouraged to post it on my own blog as a complete article in its own right.]

“…We [viz. the Roman Pontiffs] hold upon this earth the place of God Almighty…”
— Pope Leo XIII, Praeclara Gratulationis Publicae (1894)

“Nothing filthy and wicked is set forth to be gazed at or imitated in Christian Churches….”
— St. Augustine, De Civitate Dei, bk. 2, ch. 28

I was aware that you were probably being hyperbolic with the words which I cited from your article, but I note how difficult it is to find a different word that is any less problematic. Suppose we say the Church’s mission–in the entirety of its Magisterial authority, “from top to bottom”–has been “infiltrated” with evil and error (by the Vicar of Christ and the vast majority of the episcopacy?). Well, how does that claim harmonize with Christ’s promise never to let the gates of Hell prevail against His Church? Likewise, if the Church’s mission has been “eroded” (from the inside?), how does that harmonize with the dogma of the Church’s immaculate indefectibility?

Continue reading

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Wash up, time to eat! My latest at OnePeterFive.com – @OnePeterFive

Head on over to One Peter Five to read part two of an essay series I’m working on: “The Modern Crisis of Authority and the Abiding Prowess of the Papacy, Part II“.

Here’s an excerpt:

The mark of authority is ordered stability, while, by contrast, charismatic dynamism produces relentless motion and change, driven by “a sudden [tragicomic]yearning to be attractive to all”. As Orwell warns, “the decline of a language … is not due simply to the bad influence of this or that individual writer. But an effect can become a cause, reinforcing the original cause and producing the same effect in an intensified form.” As G. K. Chesterton similarly warned in 1922, “Evil always takes advantage of ambiguity.” Thus did Pope Paul VI declare, “The least inexactitude, the smallest lapse, in the mouth of a Pope is intolerable.”

Happy reading.

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Rainbows and puppy dog tails…

I have found it difficult not to wade in on the recent anti-death penalty bra burning First World Kvetching editorial that was jointly–because ultimately birds of a feather–published by Our Sunday Visitor, The National Catholic Register, America, and The National Catholic Reporter. I agree with Boniface that this latest spectacle of woolly-headed moralizing is not even worth getting upset about, and I endorse his succinct response to the dogmatic bra burners:

The prime rationale employed by those who oppose the death penalty absolutely is that it is unjust to take a human life because of the intrinsic dignity of the human person. As a being made in the image and likeness of God, man possesses a certain inherent dignity, which — they say — makes it an offense against the dignity of the human person to take his or her life. …

In Genesis 9:6, the practice of capital punishment is instituted by God Himself. Note that He does not simply tolerate and permit capital punishment (as he tolerated polygamy and divorce in the Old Testament), but He actually institutes it by a positive decree. That alone tells you it could not be intrinsically evil.

But anyhow, look at the rationale God gives for instituting capital punishment:

“Whosoever shall shed man’s blood, his blood shall be shed: for man was made to the image of God.” – Gen. 9:6

In other words, the very rationale God gives for instituting the death penalty is the same rationale now given to abolish it! Those who argue against capital punishment based on man’s intrinsic dignity as an imago dei are appealing to the same principle God did when He instituted it!

In any case, the heartfelt essay which finally tipped my hand to make even this much noise about the issue boils down to the idea that because what we do to prisoners is equivalent to what we do to Christ, therefore killing a prisoner is “killing Christ all over again”.

On that note, I shall be heading to my local jail this afternoon to bust out all those little Christs.

It is odd, though, that, in a parable (Matthew 25:34ff) which allegedly denies the power of the state to assign just punishments to wrongdoers, Christ would admit the reality of the state’s authority to imprison anyone. Odd, too, that Christ would endorse giving taxes to support the state, much less make a tax collector one of His Apostles, if it is the state itself which “murders Christ”. If “jailing Christ” is wrong, why not tear down the whole system? Why, it’s almost as Our Lord both affirmed the reality of the state to assign punishments and enjoined His disciples to comfort those who incur such penalties. Or is that too sophisticated a line of reasoning for Our Shiny Modern Age?


Even odder is the fact that Christ, while He was supremely revealing the mercy of God, would not have condemned the execution of the thieves on His right and left, one of which sounds remarkably like those today who reject the Church’s teaching on the state’s right to impose death upon wrongdoers (Luke 23):

39 And one of those robbers who were hanged, blasphemed him, saying: If thou be Christ, save thyself and us [from this death penalty]. 40 But the other answering, rebuked him, saying: Neither dost thou fear God, seeing thou art condemned under the same condemnation? 41 And we indeed justly, for we receive the due reward of our deeds; but this man hath done no evil.

Odd again is how Christ called an apostle who could get it so wrong on such a supposedly obvious moral truth that “the death penalty is murder”. As that old buffoon wrote in Romans 13:

1 Let every soul be subject to higher powers: for there is no power but from God: and those that are, are ordained of God. 2 Therefore he that resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God. And they that resist, purchase to themselves damnation. 3 For princes are not a terror to the good work, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? Do that which is good: and thou shalt have praise from the same. 4 For he is God’s minister to thee, for good. But if thou do that which is evil, fear: for he beareth not the sword in vain. For he is God’s minister: an avenger to execute wrath upon him that doth evil. 5 Wherefore be subject of necessity, not only for wrath, but also for conscience’ sake.

Sadly, the antediluvian oddness does not end there.

Why, even a solemn, ecumenical council of the Church was foolish enough to enshrine the heretical nonsense that state-imposed death is not at all equivalent to murder:

“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.'”

Catechism of the Council of Trent

And of course, just when you thought the Church might have finally sloughed off its “worldly” errors–liberated by the Spirit in Our Shiny Modern Age, you see*–it was only July 2004 that the head of the CDF, who within a year’s time would become the Supreme Pontiff, had the unmitigated gall to spew such heresy as this:

“Not all moral issues have the same moral weight as abortion and euthanasia. For example, if a Catholic were to be at odds with the Holy Father on the application of capital punishment or on the decision to wage war, he would not for that reason be considered unworthy to present himself to receive Holy Communion. While the Church exhorts civil authorities to seek peace, not war, and to exercise discretion and mercy in imposing punishment on criminals, it may still be permissible to take up arms to repel an aggressor or to have recourse to capital punishment. There may be a legitimate diversity of opinion even among Catholics about waging war and applying the death penalty, but not however with regard to abortion and euthanasia.”

Worthiness to Receive Holy Communion: General Principles” — Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger

But, of course, that was then. This Is Now.

Or something.

* David Gray, the author of the hand-tipping essay, claims that for 2,000 years “the Holy Spirit has been … purifying and liberating the Church” from worldly illusions, such as supporting the state’s right to punish criminals. Isn’t is neat how neo-Waldensian errors like those of Gray et al. was already answered as long ago as a.D. 1210? As Pope Innocent III decreed: “Concerning secular power we declare that without mortal sin it is possible to exercise a judgment of blood as long as one proceeds to bring punishment not in hatred but in judgment, not incautiously but advisedly” (DS 425)

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