I have in the past had some experience of abusive relationships. They are profoundly painful even when you love the person involved. It can take a long time to realise just how abusive some human relationships are and can become quite easily. Realising that under the disguise of love you are simply being used or abused is an horrific experience. It shatters trust and hope and there come times in many people's lives when everything then just falls apart, perhaps after years of denying that they already were breaking or broken a long time ago.
The dam then breaks and the many waters rush in. In personal relationships, dynamics emerge quite quickly that if left unaddressed create faultlines along which earthquakes are guaranteed at some stage. Everybody else can see it, they even warn them not to live on the faultline, but their warnings are unheeded and then when the big one hits, they act surprised. Then, after the earthquake, they try to rebuild the shattered ruins that surround them, but rebuild on the very faultlines that fractured their lives. As it goes for bad, spiritually destructive or abusive relationships, so it goes for Holy Mother Church, or as Pope St John Paul II said, “As the family goes, so goes the nation and so goes the whole world in which we live.”
And it seems to me that Holy Mother Church has reached a crisis built on a particular set of abusive relationships hewn out of the hierarchical structure of the Church, not, I hasten to add, that the structure itself is to blame, anymore than the rites of the Church are responsible for sacrilegious Communions, lengthy lapsation after Baptism, wicked priests or requests for annulments. You'll immediately assume, I think, that I refer primarily to Pope Francis because he is the Abuser-of-the-Faithful-in-Chief, but the problem is much bigger even than he. Much, much bigger.
The Church is formed of relationships in a Communion, Communion with Christ and the Saints, Purgatory and each other in the Church Militant. Part of the problem with abusive relationships is that more often than not they rely on honourable and worthy foundations of loyalty, abusers demand it, the abused give it, but if loyalty is all there is, and there is no foundation of justiceunderpinning the relationship, it can easily become a simple relationship of master and slave. This form of slavery can take many forms, but it must be remembered that, psychologically, often even the slave is getting something out of it, some kind of emotional reward. Tolerated for too long, this kind of relationship becomes almost, if not completely impossible to reform and incredibly destructive. It can never be healthy and it can never be good, unless there is dramatic and extremely rare healing in the relationship.
Healing requires recognition of the abuse that has taken place, a sober assessment and a painful one at that. Both abuser and victim must confront reality. To do that requires great courage. The opposite vice is cowardice. Self-delusion and cowardice are faults.
It appears to me that this fault, a fault born out of lack of moral character and what we often call "backbone" is endemic among the Bishops of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. Lucky I'm not a Bishop, because I don't have that moral character either. Many Bishops are unable to see that their loyalty to Pope Francis is being completely and utterly abused in a maniacal fashion on a near daily basis, but there are many also who know full well that he who should be a Father is in fact a monster, and these cannot bring themselves to confront themselves, or each other, or their abuser with the truth of his behaviour.
Then, of course, there are the Bishops who don't consider themselves to have been abused at all because they have the same mindset as Francis himself about nearly everything. They encourage it. They are the ones who are 'helping'. When the abuser is defied by, for example, Cardinal Burke or Archbishop Vigano, these people are deemed not to be helping, but of course, they are helping genuinely, because they can see the abuse others fail to recognise and speak of it, while others are secretly terrified or enjoy facilitating the abuse.
You can be psychologically or emotionally abused for years and never realise you are enabling your abuser. You can become an abuser yourself without even realising it. You can swap roles in such relationships quickly and regularly, but in the Church there is a clear power structure that is vulnerable to abuse. Because they are Successors of the Apostles, they too have still been abused, something that should not be overlooked. The abused themselves, of course, also become abusers. Make no mistake, this is in every way the pontificate of abuse, because there is only one language Francis understands and it is the language of power. Many bishops spin on the same axis. The same goes for his companions in the serial violation of the Gospel that Francis is engineering. He loves confusion, so he says, but he seems to love power even more.
As I have indicated in prior blogposts, I believe that the idea that Pope Benedict XVI did not successfully vacate the Chair of Peter is not as outlandish as many people say it is, but while many of the Faithful continue to discuss the matter openly and without reserve, this idea does not seem to have legs among the Cardinals and Bishops of the Church. It probably never will. Nevertheless, even if the election of Jorge Mario Bergoglio were completely uncontroversial and completely undisputed throughout the whole Catholic Church, among all priests, all bishops, all cardinals and all the laity, publicly and privately, I can see no defence for Bishops and Cardinals to accept the passing down of papal directives or desires that contradict, distort or blunt the Gospel or mutate it into a secular credo that forms a kind of papal political manifesto sponsored by the UN and, perhaps soon, Stonewall. There is no excuse for this. At. All. Unfortunately, that's exactly what is starting to happen.
When the Global becomes Local
I doubt very much that we would have had what was visited in my locale without Pope Francis, but his realignment of the Church with the world requires viceroys. In the Diocese of Arundel and Brighton, parishes recently received a flashy brochure informing the Faithful of our eco-sins (we were blind, but now we see) and our call to conversion to an 'integral ecology'. Perhaps I need not have gone to Rome and made a little YouTube video about the pagan Vatican-state based terrorism project that was the Pachamama Synod. Looking back, I ask myself why I asked Pope Francis to do something about the desecration of Rome's churches, but I suppose I put that down to my indomitable belief and hope that pathological abusers (who so often present themselves as victims) can change direction.
It has taken a few years of the Bergoglian pontificate since the florid and turgid 'Laudato Si' to get to this point where climate alarmism and activism filters down to the pews. The fruit of this awful pontificate has finally now reached these pews. I dread to think what kind of literature Bishops will be handing out in the next year or two. I dread to think.
The pastoral letter was an impassioned plea, the urgency of the message emphatically proclaimed in what amounts to a climate 'emergency'. The terms 'urgent', 'crisis' and 'emergency' have seemingly been held back in reserve for a long, long time from Bishops awaiting a time such as now, when they deem the human race capable enough to save the planet while, for example, many of our marriages, familial relationships or domestic lives are burning, while spouses and children are being abandoned, while children are taught about oral and anal sex in schools and while adultery, abortion, sodomy, fornication and all kinds of addictions devour men and women and set souls at emnity with Almighty God. Would it be so remiss to suggest that some Bishops do not have their priorities in order?
The pastoral letter and the rather blasphemous magazine that came with it both packed a punch (to the guts, that is), but I couldn't help feel that no matter what view you take on Greta Thunberg's corporately-sponsored hobby horse, there was something of an imbalance between the lengthy prose and sudden apocalyptic tone of the magazine and the dearth of such material passed to the Faithful on, for example, marriage (and how to have one), the family, life issues such as abortion and IVF, catechetical material on the holy Catholic Faith and the faithful renewal of the Holy Liturgy to reflect more reverently the Sacrifice being renewed upon the Altar at Holy Mass in an unbloody manner. If the religious language and iconography had been removed from the magazine, one could easily be forgiven for thinking that Catholic parishes had received a mailing from Extinction Rebellion.
Was this the Bishop's idea? Was it the Bishop of Salford's idea? Whose idea was this? Are Bishops voluntarily jettisoning Christ for climate change alarmism? Are they following Francis's lead, or are they being encouraged or even told to become climate evangelists by Pope Francis and the Vatican? I don't know, I'd like to know but probably never will. All I know is that now Pope Francis's abuse and mutilation of the Catholic Faith has come right down all the way to parishes, through Bishops. Somehow. Having already gutted the St John Paul II pro-life institute, Francis, by his abuse of power, is bringing sustainable development goals with all their known endorsement of artificial contraception, abortion and sterilisation to Catholic parishes through 'helpful' and pliant Bishops who are either aware or unaware that their loyalty to Francis is being seriously abused. Perhaps they are also unaware that they, in turn, because they are unable to resist the garbage coming from Rome, are abusing the Faithful over whom they are Shepherds. The Bishops, with Francis's encouragement, are now following Francis's lead in abusing their teaching Office to teach what really amounts to another Gospel entirely. It wouldn't be so bad perhaps if Bishops taught and passed on the perennial Faith as well, but the enthusiasm for teaching the Catholic Faith simply isn't there among most Bishops. Most seem to find the Catholic Faith embarrassing, but aren't embarrassed to repeat the mantras of corporations, governments and celebrities on climate change.
The Catholic lay Faithful, as the most numerous but last in line when it comes to any power and certainly any authority, have every right to expect from the Pope and the Bishops of the Catholic Church, sound doctrine and teaching about the Faith into which all of us were baptised, in which we hope to grow in holiness, grow in the love of God and save our immortal souls. Not everyone even agrees with or believes in man-made climate change in the manner in which it is presented by climate activists. Just how many men and women went to Mass to hear a Pastoral Letter and felt unnecessarily completely alientated? How can Bishops force-feed this stuff onto the lay faithful? None of these matters are articles of Faith. None of these matters touch on Catholic spirituality at all, it doesn't really trace for us the path of Salvation.
Bishops are being played by Pope Francis even if they want to be played, or don't mind being played for myriad reasons or don't realise their loyalty is valued only because it furthers a political agenda, rather than the Kingdom of God. Bishops and priests and lay people need the Light of Christ to be able to distinguish between what is truly Gospel teaching, what is from God, and what is a counterfeit, man-made Gospel that has not come from the Lord. All authority was entrusted to the Successors of the Apostles to teach all nations and baptise them in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, instructing souls to keep the commandments of God, to preach repentance for the Salvation of souls. Pray for our Bishops that they do just this. They are not, in the last analysis, required to do much more, save for prayer, than this. Pray for the end of abuse of all kinds in the Catholic Church, lest every Catholic become a victim.
God bless readers and keep fighting the good fight for the Salvation of souls and the conversion of sinners through your prayers and sacrifices. Have a wonderful and blessed Christmas and a blessed 2020.
Over the years on this blog I have offered some commentary on Pope Francis and his bizarre, scandalous and increasingly diabolical pontificate. Of late, I have tried to keep it light, trying to offer some comic relief on the papacy arranged meticulously in a conference room in Hell. Later still, I stopped blogging, mostly due to time constraints, domestic and work commitments. Before I stopped blogging, I was confident enough in my own limited knowledge of the Church to offer some insights into what I thought had gone wrong in the time since 13 March 2013.
Reasons for the catastrophe I offered over the time were varied, from the election of a 'mad Pope' to the election of an apostate Bishop to the Papacy, to someone who was elected Pope but who resisted the Truth and simply taught his own beliefs instead. Who hasn't thought, 'Oh, he's a Jesuit, what could anyone expect?' Did I say these things explicitly? Some yes, others I expect not, because with this situation I, like many others, have always felt like I was treading on eggshells. Oh, and I still am, I assure you, and I'm just a layman with little to fear, unlike the suffering clergy.
I could always hint, too, that Francis is owned by players far more powerful than he, that he was a placeman for the Soros New World Order empire. I would give a nudge and a wink about the glaring possibility that Francis was a validly-elected high-ranking Freemason, who by his membership of the infernal Lodge employed his own unique method of madness to subvert and destroy as much of the Church as possible in the limited time he has and that his possible membership might have a detrimental impact on his ability to be a true Pope.
'Nearly all my friends enjoy sodomy as well. I always tell them, 'It doesn't matter how you live your life.'
Oh, and who didn't note Francis's obviously close association to the St Gallen Mafia of Cardinals who orchestrated the voting blocs for him to emerge on the loggia? Among a throng of others, I probably hinted that it is most plausible that these orchestral manouvres in the dark were in complete defiance of the now, thanks to Pope Francis, Saint Pope John Paul II's decrees on the legal election of a Supreme Pontiff. I certainly indicated I thought Francis was a heretic, probably opined that he might be perfectly possessed. I don't think I ever went so far as to say he wasn't, or could perhaps not be, the Pope, though I may have expressed some modicum of doubt for any or all of the reasons listed above.
However, one of the reasons I lost a lot of confidence in my own ability to say much about the subject of Pope Francis is that I watched Ann Barnhardt's epic YouTube video, outlining the reasons why she considers Francis to be not the Pope and Benedict XVI to be the one and only true Pope. It really floored me. Yes, it did. For me, Ann, with breathtaking confidence, threw a real spanner in the works, not an unhelpful spanner necessarily, but one that jammed the whole system of thought-cogs that would wind around my head when thinking about Francis and the Papacy and the madness of it all.
The Barnhardt Intervention
Until Ann's presentation, I was content with my own view (since everyone has an opinion) that Francis was a valid Pope who was and is daily nullifying his own papal authority and credibility by wilfully refusing to fulfil the mandate Christ gave to St Peter and his Successors.
This habit, a habit he has demonstrated since day one, was, I held, a matter of his own free will which God gives to each and every human being and to each and every Pope. I held (and still hold) that God forces no Pope into complete obedience to Him, therefore the Pope who fulfils his mandate freely consents and cooperates with the grace of Office to pass on that which he has received, some better than others, but all to the degree which is the bare minimum. That is, in reality, his main role. If all his other duties were removed from him, but he passed on the Faith of Jesus Christ and confirmed the brethren in it, refusing to be a vehicle for heresy, he could say he had successfully 'Poped', whatever personal defects he may have had.
Evidence for Francis's complete andutter dereliction of teaching duty was in this regard supplied by his obstinate, inexplicable, absolutely determined refusal to answer the Dubia of the once four, but now two Cardinals. These were questions which were of no threat to any reigning Pope with half an ounce of Catholic belief. Certainly, one could imagine Benedict XVI answering them with ease. These questions, of course, arose from one of Francis's own documents, Amoris Laetitia, but encapsulated a great deal of the banquet of ambiguity and confusion that Francis has lavished on the Church.
I was confident that Francis simply refused to teach, that is, to teach Catholic faith and morals (since a Pope can teach nothing else of value to the Church or souls), that he was Pope in a titular manner, must be respected as such, prayed for as such, but that because he willingly refused the divine mandate - considering the Office of the Papacy to be a purely political, rather than a spiritual Office with some political responsibilities, he was making himself and continues to make himself a kind of quasi-Antipope. Insodoing, Francis was and is cutting from beneath himself the very branch of authority given to him by Christ. To this end, Francis was and remains his own worst enemy and yours. The unfaithful wouldn't be able to detect this, I thought, but the Faithful would. I gleaned this from observation of his ways which seem to be ways of pure and unadulterated mischief. Most bishops and cardinals, obviously, wouldn't care either way, because so many are as seemingly faithless as Francis. This, a theory, remains, in my opinon, a possibility. I can't say that I relinquish it entirely. Like I say, however, Ann's video opened up a new dimension in the Francis Papacy. Is it possible that this man is simply not, as Ann maintains, the reigining Pope?
Division sets in among the ranks
While Catholic bloggers cheerfully chewed each other's heads off after Ann Barnhardt's presentation, I was happy to 'sit this one out' and not get involved terribly in the dispute on Twitter or here. Of course, this is primarily because I am a coward, but also I could observe the fractious fighting, name-calling and often complete breakdown of fraternal charity that ensued. Friendships literally seemed to dissolve into rancourous and bitter emnities over this.
After this blogpost, I personally expect some blowback. I've never enjoyed such fights and I don't want to fight with Catholics I admire and respect online or elsewhere about the true identity of the Pope or the reason why the Francis nightmare continues. Why should we let the Devil, through Pope Francis, his indomitable vicar, this anti-Pastor, this destroyer, destroy the bonds of charity between us? And who, absolutely, knows the absolute truth of all of this when Benedict XVI himself maintains that he has relinquished the Crown, or at least the Chair, of Blessed Peter, and in his resignation told us that the Seat would become vacant?
The truth is that most, if not all of us, have and continue to have a vested and common interest in assuming that the Church is correct to tell us that Pope Francis is a validly elected Supreme Pastor, Successor of St Peter and Vicar of Christ, and treating him as such, even when more or less each and every single thing he says and does contradicts this role, this sublime calling, this most revered, holy, august and vital Office. Well, as the picture below indicates, our image of that Office has been, er, somewhat dimmed...
"I thought Francis was the Pope until he showed me and everyone else his behind..."
And the dimming of that Office, the diminution of the Papacy, or the destruction of the Petrine Office is a huge problem. However, whether you are a priest or a bishop who has to name his name in the Canon of the Mass, who simply has to put up with Francis and his knuckle-bitingly awful ways, or whether you're just a Catholic who goes online and maybe someone says, 'Did you see what Pope Francis said about X, Y, or Z? Isn't it crazy?' you want to be able to be confident, 100% confident, that when you say 'Yes, what a terrible Pope!' that you absolutely know you are talking about the Pope, rather than someone who dresses as the Pope but who is not the Pope, because if we're going to constantly run down the Pope as a heretic or worse it would be shameful for us to realise that every time we castigated 'the Pope' we were helping an evil Antipope to heap yet more derision on the Papacy that he despises and seeks to destroy. Well, wouldn't it?
What if Francis isn't the Pope?
A loss of confidence that Francis is the Pope or an interior acknowledgement that Francis is not the Pope has real psychological and spiritual effects. Yes, that would be 'annulment time'. 'This papacy is null and void' are the words so many of us would like to hear, but it would be quite a shock, equally, to know that the last six years had been from beginning to end a masterfully-orchestrated Satanic deceit that had convinced large swathes of the Church that Almighty God, knowing all things before Time ever existed, omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, would ever, for a single moment outside of Time (if that makes sense), no matter how angry He may be with His People, permit that the hallowed Chair of the Blessed Peter could be legitimately, lawfully, validly occupied by someone as pertinaciously heretical and implacably opposed to the will of Our Lord Jesus Christ - and proclaim such derision for God and His Law publicly - as Jorge Mario Bergoglio.
At the announcement of this shock news, real and palpable grief would be manifested in the tweets of Massimo Faggioli and Austen Ivereigh decrying the injustice done to their beloved champion of all things antithetical to True Religion, but grief might also be manifested by those who had fought Francis solely on the basis that he was the true reigning Pope and there was no other and that they had not been fighting an enemy on the Chair of Peter, but a foe of Christ installed during an invalid conclave. In an invalid conclave, the Third Person of the Blessed Trinity could not possibly have assisted the Cardinals, since the Holy Ghost would not assist in an illicit and invalid conclave that could only produce an antipope, no matter who was elected, be he good or evil. May we assume that if a conclave is invalid, then the Holy Ghost may very well not bring it divine protection?
From a spiritual point of view, the interior acceptance that Francis is not the Pope also brings changes, the first of which is the reconsolidation of the theological virtues of Faith and Hope which, as we can all agree, the Devil is gleefully destroying. The one thing that Pope Francis has brought upon the Church and especially clergy is the destruction of the theological virtue of Faith, not necessarily Faith in the One who made the promises to Saint Peter, Prince of the Apostles, but faith and unyielding belief in the promise itself. Many of us have had to adjust our interpretation of that promise just for Pope Francis. Yes, what an accolade for Francis! Job well done, Jorge!
But are we denying our Faith?
For example, observe with what great Faith and love for God those who have signed the letter accusing Pope Francis of heresy possess by God's grace, because they believe in what has been divinely revealed to the Church in Her faith and morals, things taught and held by the Church as being from Her Lord. Because they believe this with all their heart, they recognise the wolf who is devouring the sheep and the wolf is called "Pope Francis". Bravo to each and every one of them for doing so.
When it comes, however, to the actual promise of Christ that the gates of Hell cannot prevail against His Church and the belief from what I assume was the beginning that the Church is indefectible, there exists within that heresy charge an implicit rejection of a many centuries-held belief that many can lead the Faithful to perdition by their errors, but that the Pope cannot or by God's Providence would not defect, run headlong into heresy and lead the vast majority of the Church into error upon error and thereby tempt the Church to Her own destruction.
Yet, in Pope Francis, this is precisely what we observe increasingly and many Bishops will follow him into the bottomless pit he is digging for himself and for them and all those who will not abide in the Truth of Jesus Christ our Lord. The Pope, we are led to believe, is leading the battle cry of all of Hell. What is this battle cry? 'Non serviam!' 'I will not serve!' Can you believe that? The Pope acting as a leading agent for the entire confraternity of demons?
But ah, it is worse even than this, since the supreme authority of the one who implicitly cries it each and every day also shouts aloud, 'You will not serve either!' and this he cries to all those placed under him. This is why the good are removed quickly and the bad are promoted even more quickly. This is why the illicit Chinese Patriotic Bishops are enlisted among the ranks of those in Communion with the Holy See. The just are punished, the wicked are set free to work their work of deceit and malice, not just in episcopal Sees but in whatever areas of the Church heretics can be emboldened. That is to say, everywhere.
This entire situation is contrary to our Faith
Thou art Peter and I haven't foreseen Jorge Bergoglio, honest...
How can such a thing as this happen in a Church divinely protected? How can this happen from the very Office instituted as the divinely-appointed Protector and Defender of the entire Church, most especially in Her Infallible Teachings? How? Only six years ago, we did not think this time of doctrinal chaos from the centre could happen, even though faithful Catholics know that the Pope who Francis canonised, Paul VI, oversaw a time of liturgical chaos. We thought that doctrine was safe. What changed?
Previous generations have thought such a thing impossible and in our times, instead of ramming their heads against the Rock of the Papacy while their belief in Christ's actual promise to Blessed Peter ebbs away into the tributary of a river called "Eastern Orthodoxy", whether right or wrong, a good number have done themselves and their immutable Catholic Faith a favour and said, 'This man cannot be / is not the Pope.' Can they be blamed? Would it be too controversial to suggest that they cannot be blamed?
For how long can we avoid the confrontation with this controversy?
The reality is that among Catholics there really is disagreement and confusion over the identity of the true Pope. This is observable on various online forums. I must concede that once you remove the possibility that Francis is, was or ever will be the Successor of St Peter and the Vicar of Christ, the problems and scandals that he promotes remain and continue to jeopardise the sublime Mission of the Church for the Salvation of Souls. Because of Francis, Pope Francis, the Church and even the World are scandalised, heretics believe the eternal Truth can be changed because 'our man' is 'at the top', the wicked are confirmed in their wickedness, the errors of Russia spread throughout the Hierarchy like flames engulfing Cathedral rafters, but, if he isn't the Pope, the actual promise of Christ to Peter - the Church's actual belief in the indefectibility of the Church - remains wholly intact.
Why? Because, in this outcome, were it to be true, despite the chaos we observe, in reality nothing would have changed since 13 March 2013. In this scenario, Jorge Mario Bergoglio is not Peter, he is an antipope, and not just any old antipope but the Antipope of History himself. If he is, then nothing he does or says is binding, everything he has done, encyclicals, exhortations, Synods and appointments, including the cardinalatial appointments he has made are invalid, null and utterly void. If he is just an apostate Bishop and Antipope he can be the most evil man on the planet, rivalled in his emnity towards God only by the Antichrist himself, a valid Bishop, yes, an apostate and a heretic, yes, but never, ever, not for a single moment, the Holy Roman Pontiff, the Pope, the Vicar of Christ, the Successor of St Peter, the Prince of Princes, the Servant of the Servants of the Church.
In this scenario, the Faithful who have accepted interiorly or interiorly considered the possibility that Francis is not the Pope, look on as the Faithful looked upon Notre Dame de Paris blazing in the night, praying fervently, offering up entreaty to the ever-Virgin Mother of God, praying for relief and deliverance from the inferno raging through the building, that this imposter may be once and for all exposed for who he really is.
Who is he, in this scenario? He can most likely be nothing other than the False Prophet of the Apocalypse and I have on various sites and on social media seen him described as just this apocalyptic figure because he fits the bill perfectly, not simply because of his sinister methods of ruling the Church, but his central role in the apostasy we are daily witnessing. He is, in his unique role, promoting and facilitating the apostasy his vocation would be to do valiant battle against as Pope. For this explicit reason and for no other, some Catholics have quite naturally reasoned that he cannot, therefore, be the true Pope. This may be the faith of the simpleton, but if the Catholic Faith isn't for simpletons, who is it for? Experts? Let's be honest, people are sick to death of experts. People have eyes and ears. They know the voice of the Good Shepherd. They know that Voice is not heard from the mouth of Francis.
The Catholic Church is on fire
As Bishop Schneider surmised on the destruction of Notre Dame, in the Cathedral, the upper regions, that is to say, the Hierachy, are engulfed in the infernal flames, they are destroyed by their own folly and lack of Faith in the Risen One, by their lukewarmness and their pursuit of status, by their naked, faithless, godless ambition.
We see this in Bishops everywhere. They accept each and every new innovation and mockery of God and His Bride, doctrinal questions are 'above my paygrade' but they do not perceive the signs of the times, they follow every wind of new doctrine and implicitly reject Sacred Tradition and Scripture. They will happily reject as heretics and schismatics those who hold firm to the Truth of Jesus Christ, but the truly Faithful remain standing like a High Altar or a Rose Window, intact, their faith in Christ and the indefectibility of the Church untouched by the raging destruction surrounding them.
I may sympathise with those who believe Francis is truly the Pope, since I have long believed it myself. I may symapthise with those who believe Francis cannot be the Pope since his actions, omissions and words do not recommend themselves to this Office at all. Yet it is, no matter what I believe concerning the matter, a testable fact that those who hold that Benedict XVI did not validlyabdicate or adequately vacate the Throne of glorious St Peter and who therefore hold that Jorge Bergoglio does not validly enjoy the authority of the Vicar of Christ, have preserved, in contrast to many, many others, their impenetrable belief thatthe Pope himself cannot lead the Faithful into error or be a pertinacious, material or formal heretic, that this possibility is as impossible today as it has hitherto, I think, always been held to be.
This is believed by many because they believe that Our Lord Jesus Christ protects with His Mighty Hand the Office of Peter and preserves the Officeholder, in myriad ways, from His Throne in Heaven, from leading the Church astray, or, at the very least, so profoundly awry that She threatens to divorce Herself from Him with the sanction and blessing of the Supreme Authority of Christ Himself in His Vicar. You may say that Pope Francis hasn't yet done that. You might think he's gone close. Perhaps he has not, but he is trying very hard to do just that and that's where the Church is headed under his stewardship, if, indeed, one may call his behaviour 'stewardship'.
I would have as much authority as the remarkable Ann Barnhardt to declare that Pope Francis is a counterfeit, imposter Pope and that Benedict XVI remains the one and only true Pope on Earth, the Vicar of Christ. How much authority is this? None. Not a bit. Equally, however, it can be conceded to those who say it, like the theologiacal giant and pianist Stephen Walford and Fr Thomas Petri OP (two names which I never suspected would be lumped together in a blog post) that no authority may pass judgement on a sitting Pope.
A problem: No authority may pass judgement on a sitting Pope
If we accept that no authority may sit in judgement on a sitting Pope (and I do) andwe accept that Pope Francis is a heretic (and I certainly do, because he patently is) then Pope Francis cannot reasonably be accepted to be the Pope, even if the whole Church proclaims him to be the Pope and accepts his election universally. If the Pope is a heretic and you cannot place the Pope on trial, because nobody can judge him, then God has placed no safeguards, divine or even natural, around the Papacy at all and our Catholic Faith is discovered to be deficient, the entire Church entirely defenceless against an evil Pope with the Church at his mercy, the faithful among Her to be shown none. The Church, in this scenario, is so far from indefectible as to warrant the contempt and derision of the entire World. Sorry, but that's how it must seem to so many people.
Is the Pope Catholic? Answer: Yes, but only if the Pope is Benedict XVI
If we accept that it is now possible for Catholics to call Pope Francis out on his heresies to the extent that we call him, even in an unofficial but decisive manner, a heretic, thereby worthy of losing or having plausibly lost the Office he was once in possession of, it is no worse or better for us to say that Pope Francis is not the Pope because the conclave that elected him was an invalid conclave.
Furthermore, it is no worse to suggest that for this reason and this reason alone was he, an apostate Bishop of evil intent, permitted by Almighty God to take over the organs of power and authority in the Church for the destruction of those who would willingly join him in his unholy endeavour in his bizarre and adulterous embrace of a syncretistic secular religion of man to be erected in place of the Catholic Church, yes on the very foundation Christ founded for the World's Salvation. I guess that Church, that monstrosity, that Temple of Man will look something like the designs you will see from modern architects for the new Notre Dame but probably much worse.
Let us not mince our words. God's ways are indeed inscrutable, but, (forgive me, Lord, if I speak in presumption) He seems, from what I can see, to be using the evil man we know as Pope Francis to gather all those who will be condemned, together, along with him, into one Hellish tent.
We must ask: Would Almighty God use a genuine Successor of Saint Peter to do that, when He has promised the precise opposite, or would that not indeed renege entirely our faithful Lord Jesus Christ's own promises to Peter, to his Successors and to His Holy Catholic Church? Would that not make Almighty God a liar?
You see, that doesn't really sound like God. May I suggest it is more likely that were the Lord to permit His Church to appear to men to be a total and utter laughing stock of insane heresies and diabolical confusion, He would permit Satan to use an apostate Bishop who had convinced himself and the world he was the Pope to do that, when, all along, he was not. Then, in the ultimate test of Faith, the Lord would observe who was taken in by Satan's deceit and who was not, noting down the names of those who were not taken in for survival, that is to say, for eternal life, in the Book of Life.
If Pope Francis is a validly elected Pope, truly a Successor of St Peter and yet works every day, like no other man in the history of Christianity, save for the most notorious heretics of old, to destroy the Church in order to erect the Anti-Church, emptied of the Teachings of Our Lord, it is, since the Salvation of souls is the highest law of the Church, absolutely right that he be confronted for his heresies and the errors he is promoting. I thoroughly applaud and admire all who have signed the letter which I recommend you sign in form of a petition of support. Likewise, now that we are saying that Pope Francis is a heretic, it is worthwhile revisting at the very least the possibility that:
a) God cannot, since He has sworn by His very self to protect His Bride and the Teaching Office of the Papacy, permit a man such as Francis to be a validly elected Pope whom all must obey and that therefore...
b) Francis is not the Pope and that therefore...
c) Pope Benedict XVI did not abdicate the Throne of the glorious Peter in a satisfactory manner, nor was his resignation accepted in Heaven and that therefore...
d) Jorge Bergoglio is a heretic but...
e) the Pope is not because...
f) he isn't the Pope because...
g) Pope Benedict XVI is the true and only Pope.
And if we think about it, nuts as that sounds and much as we may resist the idea, let us be honest to ourselves and each other and confess that for the integrity of our Faith to remain intact, the only possible way a 'Pope' could do what Pope Francis has done, is doing, and will without a shred of remorse do, because conscience he has none, is if God would permit the Church to be tempted not only to follow his errant teachings but to believe that a sitting Pope could do these things, without His Intervention, such as sudden death or sudden repentance, and be a valid, lawfully elected Successor of St Peter, the Vicar of Christ, the Chief Shepherd of all the Faithful.
"In conclusion, just do whatever George Soros tells you. "
For my part, I do not say these things to be divisive, just as Catholic heroes of faith Nick Donnelly, Fr Aidan Nichols OP and all those brave men and women, with much to lose, aim to be divisive. I have studied and observed this nightmare for six years. Nothing about Pope Francis seems real. It all seems so fabricated. Nothing about it is authentic. It operates on a scale of public deceit and double-dealing nobody has seen in the history of the Papacy. Like those who have accused the Pope of heresy, I am interested in the the proclamation of the Truth and in encouraging our Shepherds to work tirelessly for the resolution of this great, lamentable and unprecedented crisis in the Church, exploring all possible avenues of enquiry over precisely what has taken place in these our times.
'They are your words.'
The concerns the letter writers express about Pope Francis build a compelling case that Pope Francis is a heretic and wilfully so. I would add nothing nor take away from anything they have said about the man who daily, with more and more urgency, makes a mockery of all that Holy Mother Church holds as sacred, venerable and holy.
What I would say is that if it is the case that Pope Francis is a heretic, or can be spoken of as such, Holy Church somehow, sooner rather than later, needs to revisit the subject of why generations upon generations upon generations of Catholics have held this supreme moment of crisis to be an impossibility, because the Office is preserved by Christ Himself for the Salvation of souls and the preservation of the Most Holy Faith in the Church which He loves and for Whom He Himself gave Himself up to Death. This Church, the Catholic Church, the One True Church, His Bride it is which is imperilled by the man the Church and the World knows as Pope Francis. We must however know for certain whether 'Pope Francis' exists or whether we are confronting with his heresies 'Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio'. Yes, that is important.
God can allow a great delusion to be sent among the people of God from within the bosom of the Church. God permitted Martin Luther to do precisely this. Yes, in His "permissive will", God can allow a great delusion which will lead souls to believe their own grievous errors. Catholics have not previously accepted that God would permit that this scandal would originate from His own Vicar. Saints and scholars have raised the possibility as one to be studied, but the belief that it could happen has never been either partially or universally accepted. Yes, there is your paradigm shift. That is the real reason you and I suffer so much. Every aspect of our Faith is under attack, including our belief that the Pope will not, by God's Providence, lead the People of God along the broad road to perdition.
Therefore, if we are going to accuse the man who leads, not merely promotes, the destruction of Christian faith and morals, by subterfuge mainly, but sometimes in a brazen and naked manner, a man who does this in any possible way he can without giving away his evil plan entirely or unmasking himself completely, a man who instills within the Church, at all levels, unprecedented fear and who micromanages a tyranny of relativism from what we are led to believe is the very summit of the Church, if we are going to accuse that man of heresy, that man divinely appointed with supreme authority in the Holy Church of God, whom no man, no authority on Earth can judge, well, we had better be 100% certain, without a shadow of a doubt, that that man is the Pope.
Why? Because if he is the Pope, we all have to, at the very best, adjust what has hitherto been our firm belief in Christ's promise to Peter and at the very worst, abandon that belief almost entirely and say,
'Christ meant some of the People of God and some Cardinals, some Bishops and some Priests wouldn't be overcome, but that the Pope would possibly, maybe...probably...well, that's how it seems.'
The problem is that Catholics have never believed that. And yet we are supposedly 'traditionalists'. We also have to adapt our interpretation of Canon Law which says nobody may sit in judgement of him, yes, even when 'the Salvation of souls is the highest law', because nobody trumps the Pope. Would God allow that situation to arise? Is God not God anymore? Is God not faithful to His Bride anymore?
If he is not the Pope, we don't have to do either. We do not have to modify our view of Christ's promise. Nor do we have to reinterpret Canon Law. In that scenario, we cannot rest on our laurels, but we may ascertain that the man we accuse as a heretic is an imposter and a usurper of the papacy, but not the Chief Shepherd of all Christians and should be treated, charged and condemned not as a heretic Pope but as an Antipope.
It is completely understandable that few, if any, in authority want to go there. Would even Benedict XVI admit if there was something deficient in his resignation that short-circuited the Petrine Office and the next conclave? Who can blame them? What a can of worms that would be and what would the results of that investigation be? Nobody enters into marriage looking for an annulment. Nobody accepts a Pope looking for an Antipope, but now that we are asking whether the Pope is a heretic, we may just as well ask whether the heretic in question is the Pope. If faithful Catholics maintain that he is the Pope, all his supporters, with all of Canon Law to back them up may respond:
'No authority may sit in judgement upon a sitting Pope'.
And you know what? They're right! A lawful authority may, however, sit in judgement upon an Antipope. Who decides whether he is an Antipope? Some Cardinals? The true Pope? Whoever it is, it isn't the Antipope himself, who is deposed, not merely for heresy, but for usurping an Office which was never his, while never attaining the Office he sought, because Christ defends it from those who would imperil His Infallible Teachings which are the Church's own because He loves us!
We are truly in unchartered territory and the hour is getting late.
Does anyone know why the Supreme Teacher of all the Faithful will not answer our questions on Faith and Morals?
You know why?
Perhaps you do know why.
Where is the red line to be drawn at which it may be ascertained by the Faithful that a man presented to the World as a true and valid Pope is not a true Pope but an illegitimate and fraudulent Antipope?
And is the Church really powerless against such a man as that? May Our Lady of Fatima, in this hour of the Church's greatest trial, come to the aid of the Pope and the Cardinals and Bishops of the Holy Catholic Church and lead the Church on Earth, by her powerful prayers to her Son, to safe harbour. Now, for something light...
Well, it has been a long time since I have put fingers to keyboard to blog and the Easter Octave seems like a better time than any other to resurrect the defence of the Catholic Church from Her foes on this website. Since it has been so long, this post will probably be unfocused and rambling, but since it has been so long, I know not quite what to say.
Eastertide weeding and planting in the war memorial garden
About a year ago, I took on full-time employment as a gardener at the Council, albeit as agency staff, and it has taken about a year for my body to adjust, even marginally, to 6:15am starts, at times very physical labour and on my return from work, domestic and other duties I am required to perform on top of my gardening job. For the time being, my life is very much about 'doing' but I don't mind too much. It keeps me engaged body and soul.
The gardening job affords ample time for prayer, unlike office jobs that require a lot of mental concentration. This is a great blessing. There are breaks when I tweet and there is a lot of time when gardening to pray, when mowing and weeding, though ear defenders aid prayer when mowing. Gardening allows you to 'zone out' like no other job on Earth. I haven't yet found a way to pray the Rosary well while doing it since it requires no distraction even to count the beads in your head mentally.
When I updated this blog more often, and had more time, I was much more of a 'free spirit', so to speak, but I would like to update this blog when and as I have the time as well as the energy.
As I now mow and strim various lawns and banks of housing estates, as our team does from March onwards, I often think about what I could write about. As I trundle along with my John Deer KS2 lawnmower, I often think: 'Am I wasting my life and the writing gifts God has given me for His glory?' But then we cannot simply do always as we would have wished.
I do enjoy the gardening, it pays the bills and it is a long, long time since I thought I would be able to make a 'job' of writing and indeed I do appreciate my gardening work. I am very fond of my gardening colleagues and I love the simplicity and natural happiness of gardening. I love the looking back at the housing estate lawn once overgrown and now tidy, that final sweep of the mower over that final tuft of grass, the weeding of a walled garden, once overgrown with weeds, but now well kept and ordered, the planting of bulbs, the occasional planting of a bedding area. To be quite honest, I even like littering the parks and changing the bins. If we didn't do it, it would look terrible!
So what to say of Holy Mother Church? Ah, Lord! What can be said which has not been said? What can anyone add to that which has been commented on various sites?! Not much! We know we are headlong into the great crisis from which it appears there is no escape, but we know You will rescue Your Bride! Even in the darkness of the night, we glimpse the power even now of Your Resurrection!
Over Lent, I endeavoured to pray most fervently for Benedict XVI and when news of his eloquent intervention in the abuse crisis came I felt a real answer to prayer. The Lord has heard my entreaty and that of a multitude of others! It is a wonderful thing to be able to hear that voice again, of a Shepherd dedicated to the Truth. Who knows how much time he has left in this vale of tears to offer his positively magisterial assessment of the crisis of faith corrupting the Church from within? O please, God, give him many years to offer his wisdom to Holy Mother Church in Her time of trial, apostasy and temptation!
Easter is such a wonderful time of grace, basking in the light of Christ's victory over Satan, Hell, sin and death. I hope you are all having a blessed Octave and enjoying the Feasts that Holy Mother Church lavishes us with in this time of unbridled jubilation in the Lord.
Christ is Risen! Let us rise with Him! Do not weep over the crimes and the indifference of so many Cardinals and Bishops who should realise the gravity of the hour in which the Church now finds Herself, since so many are blinded to the Truth of Jesus Christ and doubt His words. Why look for Jesus among those who have rejected Him in the Hierarchy? He is not there. Why look for the living One, among the dead!?
Those Princes of the Church who are truly alive in Christ have already made themselves known over the last six years. Continue to pray for them and that more will wake from their slumber and proclaim Christ whose Resurrection fills the Earth with the power of divine love and Salvation.
Pray for the persecuted Church steeped in the blood of many martyrs who surely now bear the palm of eternal triumph, pray for the conversion of the infidels, for all the enemies of God and true religion, for Shepherds who long to lead souls to Christ, for Benedict XVI, who must still be surrounded by ravenous wolves, and pray for a holy and angelic Pope to lead Holy Church out of sorrow, division and distress, into certainty, clarity and the peace, tranquility and just order of Christ Jesus our Lord.
Allelulia, alleluia, allelulia! Away with sin and sorrow. Christ has conquered sin and death and the true King's enemies, one by one, will fall before Him. Let the hearts of the just stand firm, O just God, for all who abandon You shall perish! Whatever earthly gains they may merit by their apostasy shall be nothing compared to the eternal joy they shall have forsaken in the Kingdom where You reign as Risen King forever and ever! Amen!
...for standing up in defence of our Catholic Faith (and for writing my blogpost this week).
“Let not your heart be troubled!” (John 14:1)
In the face of growing confusion about the doctrine of the Faith, many bishops, priests, religious and lay people of the Catholic Church have requested that I make a public testimony about the truth of revelation. It is the shepherds' very own task to guide those entrusted to them on the path of salvation. This can only succeed if they know this way and follow it themselves. The words of the Apostle here apply: “For above all I have delivered unto you what I have received” (1 Cor. 15:3). Today, many Christians are no longer even aware of the basic teachings of the Faith, so there is a growing danger of missing the path to eternal life. However, it remains the very purpose of the Church to lead humanity to Jesus Christ, the light of the peoples (see LG 1). In this situation, the question of orientation arises. According to John Paul II, the Catechism of the Catholic Church is a “safe standard for the doctrine of the faith” (Fidei Depositum IV). It was written with the aim of strengthening the Faith of the brothers and sisters whose belief has been massively questioned by the “dictatorship of relativism.” 1. The one and triune God revealed in Jesus Christ
The epitome of the Faith of all Christians is found in the confession of the Most Holy Trinity. We have become disciples of Jesus, children and friends of God by being baptized in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. The distinction of the three persons in the divine unity (CCC 254) marks a fundamental difference in the belief in God and the image of man from that of other religions. Religions disagree precisely over this belief in Jesus the Christ. He is true God and true Man, conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. The Word made flesh, the Son of God, is the only Savior of the world (CCC 679) and the only Mediator between God and men (CCC 846). Therefore, the first letter of John refers to one who denies His divinity as an antichrist (1 John 2:22), since Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is from eternity one in being with God, His Father (CCC 663). We are to resist the relapse into ancient heresies with clear resolve, which saw in Jesus Christ only a good person, brother and friend, prophet and moralist. He is first and foremost the Word that was with God and is God, the Son of the Father, Who assumed our human nature to redeem us and Who will come to judge the living and the dead. Him alone, we worship in unity with the Father and the Holy Spirit as the Only and True God (CCC 691).
2. The Church
Jesus Christ founded the Church as a visible sign and tool of salvation realized in the Catholic Church (816). He gave His Church, which “emerged from the side of the Christ who died on the Cross” (766), a sacramental constitution that will remain until the Kingdom is fully achieved (CCC 765). Christ, the Head, and the faithful as members of the body, are a mystical person (CCC 795), which is why the Church is sacred, for the one Mediator has designed and sustained its visible structure (CCC 771). Through it the redemptive work of Christ becomes present in time and space via the celebration of the Holy Sacraments, especially in the Eucharistic Sacrifice, the Holy Mass (CCC 1330). The Church conveys with the authority of Christ the divine revelation, which extends to all the elements of doctrine, “including the moral teaching, without which the saving truths of the faith cannot be preserved, explained, and observed” (CCC 2035).
3. Sacramental Order
The Church is the universal sacrament of salvation in Jesus Christ (CCC 776). She does not reflect herself, but the light of Christ, which shines on her face. But this happens only when the truth revealed in Jesus Christ becomes the point of reference, rather than the views of a majority or the spirit of the times; for Christ Himself has entrusted the fullness of grace and truth to the Catholic Church (CCC 819), and He Himself is present in the sacraments of the Church.
The Church is not a man-made association whose structure its members voted into being at their will. It is of divine origin. "Christ himself is the author of ministry in the Church. He set her up, gave her authority and mission, orientation and goal (CCC 874). The admonition of the Apostle is still valid today, that cursed is anyone who proclaims another gospel, “even if we ourselves were to give it or an angel from heaven” (Gal 1:8). The mediation of faith is inextricably bound up with the human credibility of its messengers, who in some cases have abandoned the people entrusted to them, unsettling them and severely damaging their faith. Here the Word of Scripture describes those who do not listen to the truth and who follow their own wishes, who flatter their ears because they cannot endure sound doctrine (cf. 2 Tim 4:3-4).
The task of the Magisterium of the Church is to “preserve God’s people from deviations and defections” in order to “guarantee them the objective possibility of professing the true faith without error” (890). This is especially true with regard to all seven sacraments. The Holy Eucharist is “source and summit of the Christian life” (CCC 1324). The Eucharistic Sacrifice, in which Christ includes us in His Sacrifice of the Cross, is aimed at the most intimate union with Him (CCC 1382). Therefore, the Holy Scripture admonishes with regard to the reception of the Holy Communion: “Whoever eats unworthily of the bread and drinks from the Lord's cup makes himself guilty of profaning the body and of the blood of the Lord” (1 Cor 11:27). “Anyone conscious of a grave sin must receive the sacrament of Reconciliation before coming to communion” (CCC 1385). From the internal logic of the sacrament, it is understood that divorced and civilly remarried persons, whose sacramental marriage exists before God, as well as those Christians who are not in full communion with the Catholic Faith and the Church, just as all those who are not disposed to receive the Holy Eucharist fruitfully (CCC 1457), because it does not bring them to salvation. To point this out corresponds to the spiritual works of mercy.
The confession of sins in Holy Confession at least once a year is one of the Church’s commandments (CCC 2042). When the believers no longer confess their sins and no longer experience the absolution of their sins, salvation becomes impossible; after all, Jesus Christ became Man to redeem us from our sins. The power of forgiveness that the Risen Lord has given to the Apostles and their successors in the ministry of bishops and priests applies also for mortal and venial sins which we commit after Baptism. The current popular practice of confession makes it clear that the conscience of the faithful is not sufficiently formed. God's mercy is given to us, that we might fulfil His Commandments to become one with His Holy Will, and not so as to avoid the call to repentance (CCC 1458).
“The priest continues the work of redemption on earth” (CCC 1589). The ordination of the priest “gives him a sacred power” (CCC 1592), which is irreplaceable, because through it Jesus becomes sacramentally present in His saving action. Therefore, priests voluntarily opt for celibacy as "a sign of new life" (CCC 1579). It is about the self-giving in the service of Christ and His coming kingdom
4. Moral Law
Faith and life are inseparable, for Faith apart from works is dead (CCC 1815). The moral law is the work of divine wisdom and leads man to the promised blessedness (CCC 1950). Consequently, the "knowledge of the divine and natural law is necessary" to do good and reach this goal (CCC 1955). Accepting this truth is essential for all people of good will. For he who dies in mortal sin without repentance will be forever separated from God (CCC 1033). This leads to practical consequences in the lives of Christians, which are often ignored today (cf 2270-2283; 2350-2381). The moral law is not a burden, but part of that liberating truth (cf Jn 8:32) through which the Christian walks on the path of salvation and which may not be relativized.
5. Eternal Life
Many wonder today what purpose the Church still has in its existence, when even bishops prefer to be politicians rather than to proclaim the Gospel as teachers of the Faith. The role of the Church must not be watered down by trivialities, but its proper place must be addressed. Every human being has an immortal soul, which in death is separated from the body, hoping for the resurrection of the dead (CCC 366). Death makes man's decision for or against God definite. Everyone has to face the particular judgement immediately after death (CCC 1021). Either a purification is necessary, or man goes directly into heavenly bliss and is allowed to see God face to face. There is also the dreadful possibility that a person will remain opposed to God to the very end, and by definitely refusing His Love, "condemns himself immediately and forever" (CCC 1022). “God created us without us, but He did not want to save us without us” (CCC 1847). The eternity of the punishment of hell is a terrible reality, which - according to the testimony of Holy Scripture - attracts all who “die in the state of mortal sin” (CCC 1035). The Christian goes through the narrow gate, for “the gate is wide, and the way that leads to ruin is wide, and many are upon it” (Mt 7:13).
To keep silent about these and the other truths of the Faith and to teach people accordingly is the greatest deception against which the Catechism vigorously warns. It represents the last trial of the Church and leads man to a religious delusion, “the price of their apostasy” (CCC 675); it is the fraud of Antichrist. “He will deceive those who are lost by all means of injustice; for they have closed themselves to the love of the truth by which they should be saved” (2 Thess 2:10).
As workers in the vineyard of the Lord, we all have a responsibility to recall these fundamental truths by clinging to what we ourselves have received. We want to give courage to go the way of Jesus Christ with determination, in order to obtain eternal life by following His commandments (CCC 2075).
Let us ask the Lord to let us know how great the gift of the Catholic Faith is, through which opens the door to eternal life. “For he that shall be ashamed of me, and of my words, in this adulterous and sinful generation: The Son of Man also will be ashamed of him, when He shall come in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.” (Mark 8:38). Therefore, we are committed to strengthening the Faith by confessing the truth which is Jesus Christ Himself.
We too, and especially we bishops and priests, are addressed when Paul, the Apostle of Jesus Christ, gives this admonition to his companion and successor, Timothy: “I charge thee, before God and Jesus Christ, Who shall judge the living and the dead, by His coming, and His kingdom: Preach the word: be instant in season, out of season: reprove, entreat, rebuke in all patience and doctrine. For there shall be a time, when they will not endure sound doctrine; but, according to their own desires, they will heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears: And will indeed turn away their hearing from the truth, but will be turned unto fables. But be thou vigilant, labour in all things, do the work of an evangelist, fulfil thy ministry. Be sober.” (2 Tim 4:1-5).
May Mary, the Mother of God, implore for us the grace to remain faithful without wavering to the confession of the truth about Jesus Christ.
United in faith and prayer,
Gerhard Cardinal Müller, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith 2012-2017
Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Müller served as the Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith from 2012-2017.
Please take a moment to pray for St Gerard Majella's intercession for the protection of Cardinal Gerhard Muller, and also for Fr Gerard Hatton of the Diocese of Arundel and Brighton, who is seriously ill in hospital with meningitis, that the Lord in His goodness, if it so pleases Him, restore him to health and his active ministry.
Since I stopped blogging quite some time ago, the unparalleled train wreck that is Pope Francis continues to bring fresh horror to the Catholic Church. The abuse crisis that will undoubtedly mark Francis’s entire pontificate until and beyond its end has all but extinguished the moral credibility of 'Francis the wonderful man' and the reputation of most US Bishops. Nobody’s coming out of this looking good, apart from the honest whistle-blower who reproached himself for his own failures, Archbishop Vigano. The US abuse summit will almost certainly involve quite some PR management opportunities of the ‘this time we really mean it’ variety, but unless sackcloth is actually produced for the Bishops, it is hard to see it limiting, let alone addressing the nature of the crisis. Let's pray for it to bring some healing to the Church, nevertheless, despite the presence and leadership role of Cardinal Cupich.
Archbishop McCarrick’s victims are many, not limited to the actual boys and men he molested or violated, scarring for life. The entire Church is wounded, the entire Church is reeling psychologically and spiritually from McCarrick’s molestation and violation of it. It is, fundamentally, what abuse does. It scars for life, so much so that nothing, nothing will ever be the same again. Bishops, priests, laity are reeling and the Pope was not at all prepared for an unrelenting hurricane season of abuse related headlines that lay charges so close to him that Catholics wonder if any of his associates are untainted by scandal.
There is something rather half-hearted even about the enthusiasm of the most loyal and vocal Francis defenders nowadays. Gone, it seems, is the unfettered adulation of former days. Francis is an embarrassment to the Church. Even they get that. Even the cheerleaders are starting to look like panicking nurses in the field hospital that is the Francis papacy, their noises starting to sound angry and bitter, like men who see they are losing even when power is in their hands.
They might hold power for years, but not comfortably, not now. Francis’s handle on papal power and his health seem remarkably fine and his friends can do a lot for his reputation with Photoshop, but more and more people are realising that at the heart of the Hierarchy of the Church is a huge problem with morality, not just by the Church’s high standards, the Standard that is Christ, but even the standards admired by unbelievers. Most young people are almost certainly fornicating. Most married people are contracepting, but most of these persons are not embroiled in abuse cover up and / or sexual abuse allegations and financial scandal. Really, they are not. Right now, unrepentant mortal sinners who may or may not act out of ignorance have every reason to think the Church is a cesspool. Most of their friends and associates probably aren’t doing things Cardinals do either. Not all gays are having orgies in their flats and many think themselves relatively respectable.
Of course, the great project of the updating of the Catholic Church to 1968 rebooted, only this time with more exotic and spicy drugs, will continue apace, being, as it is, a project too big to fail. You have to take drugs to comprehend it. But there is a gaping hole of credibility in the Church. It is called ‘Pope Francis’ and it shows absolutely no sign of being repaired. Much as Francis and his associates would wish it to be, it most certainly isn’t 1968 anymore. Sexual liberation is nothing new and sexual liberation (or licentiousness) is why Francis is on the rocks. It is also the reason why many people are on the rocks and deep down a lot of people know it. It is 2019 now and a lot of oestrogen-infected water has gone under the bridge since then. A lot of water has passed under the bridge, in fact, since 2013. It is this water that seems to have turned back on its course and is coming towards Francis, the polluted and stagnant water of the sexual revolution and the unmitigated mess it has created, in the Church and the World.
The same worried conversations taking place at EU meetings, Davos meetings and, dare I say it, Bilderberg meetings, about the ‘populism’ that gave rise to Trump in America and Brexit in Britain, Salvini in Italy and Bolsonaro in Brazil, are probably going on in the Vatican. Politically, the world is changing, a polar shift seems to be taking place, jolting the word on its axis, in which all aspects of governance and leadership are being thoroughly scrutinised and roundly rejected by populaces when they are given the chance.
Nowadays, the greatest commodity in politics, as it is in the Church, is trust. Whoever you are, if you can prove you are not like the rest, you are electable. What is more, people will know you’re not like the rest by what you say and whether you have conviction about it. Populism, no wonder the Pope hates it, gives men and women the hope, often a founded hope, that leaders of generally conservative movements are, themselves, thoroughly sick of the globalist, liberal, elite agenda, an uncompromising and totalitarian agenda that it is. Compared to the world inhabited by people such as Teresa May, Hillary Clinton, Angela Merkel and most of the mainstream media, what we call ‘ordinary people’ have had enough of the politically correct rule givers.
Populism of the kind that terrifies the Pope brings with it a definite set of boundaries by which many can be divided. Massimo Faggioli, for instance, resents, loathes and detests it, but he would, quite simply because he doesn’t seem to stand for much or even believe in much more than his liberal hobby horses. The very fact that MAGA hats bring liberals out in a rash makes those who wear them want to wear them all the more, the headwear becoming an even more heightened icon of defiance against liberal tyranny, just like Saturnos did for clergy after Pope Francis seemed to mock them as a sign of doctrinal rigidity and vanity. These red hats seeem to stand for something. It would be great if Cardinal's red hats stood for something, wouldn't it?
Pope Francis shows no sign that he is learning from his mistakes. He is like most appalling bishops in this habit. He continues to make himself dependent upon a PR team that has lost the able Greg Burke for reasons that Burke decided not to give, but the Pope has commented before that he doesn’t do change, he feels that it is important to be himself and continue forward without regret, onwards without fear (of the Lord). This has, of course, been his great undoing and his complete resistance to turning around and going in the other direction than his chartered course is the very reason for all his problems, problems which serve to undermine his great project for the ‘full implementation’ of Vatican II as envisaged by liberal professors around the globe. It will bring joy only to the spiritually and actually dead if he manages to do it.
The implementation, will, naturally, create if successful a host of other victims, rejects and pariahs and have Catholics searching desperately for the emergency exits on Francis’s express train to wherever it is the St Gallen Mafia wanted. Did they even know? Does this reform movement even have a final destination other than Hell in a handcart? Francis’s dream for the Church probably involves ensuring bad men have power for a long time. It certainly involves ensuring good men are nowhere near it and that faithful Catholic priests, bishops and laity have to endure great evils before the triumph of the Church (a triumph he doesn’t believe in) takes place. I am sure this was always what Francis envisioned in the end (apart from the bit about him losing bigtime).
The thing that will really get to him, though, is that he wanted to look incredibly good while he was doing it and pass himself off as a noble and kindly Catholic pope while driving the Church off a cliff. It will anger him greatly that the prospect of the Church remembering him as fondly as so many of his predecessors, including Benedict XVI, is fading fast and the prospect of his being remembered as the worst Pope in all of Christian history is coming into view.
Francis is unpredictable but he probably won’t go, he doesn’t care for the Church enough to see that the Church can do better without his amoral leadership. He dislikes the Church enough to stay and drive this train, but alas for him, when the Francis express train crashes, having ignored so many warning signs the Lord sent him through many messengers, he has forgotten that the first victim of the train crash is always the driver and the driver, if he is found to have ignored warnings, always gets the blame. In the end, the company might even say the driver wasn't competent, we're not sure he was really one of ours.