Sunday, October 7, 2012


The hollow, empty, ugly "spirit" of Vatican II and its anti-Pope Hans:

As I have written before, there is still a huge number of Catholics my age and older (late 50's and through the 90's) who were formed in the euphoria of Pandora's Box that was opened by the unbridled implementation of the "spirit" of Vatican II. We thought way back then, i.e. 1963 to about 1978 that Vatican II's spirit could be implemented in a pre-Vatican II authoritarian way. We were convinced that we were right, the pre-Vatican II Church was wrong and pre-Vatican II Catholics were despicable and needed purification and reform and we were the light unto their path! The only thing we really liked about pre-Vatican II was its ability to tell people what to do and although we were liberal, we wanted to imposed our liberal "spirit" of Vatican II on the entire people of God and the world and at the risk of being hyperbolic, I guess I could say that this was religious liberal fascism.

Last night I preached at my former parish of the Church of the Most Holy Trinity in Augusta. I tried to tied the Gospel reading about the indissolubility of sacramental marriage into family life, and the Church's pro-life teachings which includes the prophetic message of Humanae Vitae and that 20/20 hindsight shows us today how wise this encyclical was and how important it is for Catholic identity today. I also touched on the rebellion it caused in the Church in 1968 from which we have yet to fully recover but there isn't the same antipathy about Humanae Vitae today amongst practicing Catholics as there was in 1968 amongst pre-Vatican II Catholics embracing the post Vatican II "spirit" of Catholicism and deconstruction of true Catholicism found not actually in the actual documents of Vatican II.

It happened that one of my former parishioners now in his 70's was in the seminary in the 1960's and at Louvain Seminary in 1968 was at this Mass and he came up to me afterward to thank me for the homily. He recalled how divisive Humanae Vitae was and its wholesale rejection by the intelligentsia of the Catholic academic world which included not only rank and file Catholics but bishops, priests, nuns and theologians. He was on their side at the time and recalled that these same people were seeking to make the Catholic Church into a Protestant enterprise as that would be the only way to have Christian Unity. They wanted to put a moratorium on ordaining priests until the priesthood was redefined according to Protestant principles of ministry that would allow anyone to be ordained. They really want to rid the world of the true Church and make the true Church into a bastardized substitution. This gentleman at the time was with that spirit and became so disgusted with Humanae Vitae and the move to restore the Church to what it was meant to be as the Second Vatican Council desired that he left the pursuit of the priesthood.

Today with 20/20 hindsight he sees that Pope Paul VI was right and there was no way that the true Church could be destroyed by this cadre of dissident Catholics in high and low places, who remain today with us in their old age still stirring the pot of dissent and trying the deconstruct the true Church and make it Protestant at best or neo-Protestant at worst. The Holy Spirit preserved the Church from being overtaken by this dissident group 40 years ago but who now are gasping their last frantic breath and they know that now as they start to die off,thus their driveling rhetoric is having its final rally before they expire.

The Tablet, a "catholic" periodical out of England has an article on Vatican II (WHICH YOU CAN READ IN FULL HERE) and laments that the Council's spirit has been hijacked by three flies in the ointment of Vatican II:

"There were, of course, two flies in the ointment [of Vatican II's spirit] – or three if one counts the 1968 encyclical, Humanae Vitae, which caused a profound crisis of self-confidence in the post-conciliar Church that has still not been overcome. The two are, first, the fact that implementation of the council’s decrees was left in the hands of the same Roman Curia whose initial drafts had been so comprehensively rejected. The second was the failure to carry out the council’s desire that the spirit of collegiality, which had been so productive, should be continued afterwards, within appropriate institutions. The International Synod of Bishops has proved a disappointment, not least because it has been too easily manipulated. Hence the council’s fundamental vision of the Church’s structure – of it being governed by a college of bishops with the Pope at its head, and the Curia subject to, and at the service of, both – has received only lip service. If a return to the texts leads the Church to rediscover that vision and resolve to make it come alive at last, a new and exciting chapter may be about to be written. The Church will be set in motion again. But the forces of anti-conciliar reaction have not yet been defeated. They did not like the council then and they do not like it now, and they will do everything they can to frustrate it."

Basically the quote above envisions a Church that already exists and in Vatican II's "spirit" in the most pristine sense and that is the Anglican Church, aka The Protestant Episcopal Church in America. The key to this kind of ecclesial institution is the removal of "natural law" from its moral authority and thus the opening up of the contraceptive and abortion mentality which allows individuals the freedom to do the immoral without guilt or impunity and the state to impose the contraceptive and abortion agenda on the world through law.

Allowing for unbridled collegiality allows the agenda of deconstructing the Church even further, such as the ordination of women, the redefining of Jesus Christ and the Most Holy Trinity and the dumbing down of the Church into a "Unitarian" understanding of self and the world. This is exactly what is happening to the Episcopal Church and through the tyranny of democratic principles run a muck.

The liberal mirror image of the Holy Father, what one might call the modern anti-pope and who some say is going senile of the fumes of the spirit of Vatican II that still linger like cobwebs in his brain, Father Hans Kung, has as recently as October 5th, called for the on-going "spirit" of Vatican II rebellion when he says in an interview in the Guardian the following (you can read the full sad article by pressing here). The following is but a short excerpt:

One of the world’s most prominent Catholic theologians has called for a revolution from below to unseat the pope and force radical reform at the Vatican.

Hans Küng is appealing to priests and churchgoers to confront the Catholic hierarchy, which he says is corrupt, lacking credibility and apathetic to the real concerns of the church’s members.

In an exclusive interview with the Guardian, Küng, who had close contact with the pope when the two worked together as young theologians, described the church as an “authoritarian system” with parallels to Germany’s Nazi dictatorship.

“The unconditional obedience demanded by bishops who swear their allegiance to the pope when they make their holy oath is almost as extreme as that of the German generals who were forced to swear an oath of allegiance to Hitler,” he said.

The Vatican made a point of crushing any form of clerical dissent, he added. “The rules for choosing bishops are so rigid that as soon as candidates emerge who say, stand up for the pill, or for the ordination of women, they are struck off the list.” The result was a church of “yes men”, almost all of whom unquestioningly toed the line.

“The only way for reform is from the bottom up,” said Küng, 84, who is a priest. “The priests and others in positions of responsibility need to stop being so subservient, to organise themselves and say that there are certain things that they simply will not put up with anymore,” he added.

Küng, the author of around 30 books on Catholic theology, Christianity and ethics, which have sold millions worldwide, said that inspiration for global change was to be found in his native Switzerland and in Austria, where hundreds of Catholic priests have formed movements advocating policies that openly defy current Vatican practices. The revolts have been described as unprecedented by Vatican observers, who say they are likely to cause deep schisms in the church.

The Tablet's article ends with the following warning against Pope Benedict's "hermeneutic of continuity" in interpreting the Council documents and the reassertion of the true Church and her mission:

But the forces of anti-conciliar reaction have not yet been defeated. They did not like the council then and they do not like it now, and they will do everything they can to frustrate.

But I would like to paraphrase that bit of old age drivel:

But the forces of the anti-Christ and anti-Church have not yet been defeated, the so-called "spirit" of Vatican II. They do not like the hermeneutic of continuity, the pre-Vatican II Church or its Catholics and they don't like the true message of Vatican II, Humane Vitae and of the living Magisterium and they will do everything they can to frustrate, being quite frustrated themselves in their old age.


Joe Shlabotnick said...

16Thank you for pointing out that young, idealistic, "freedom loving" Catholics in the 1960's liked Vatican II because it could implement their "vision" in an authoritarian way. One of the most recognizable hallmarks of liberalism, no matter where it is applied, is a facade of tolerance buttressed by a policy of complete intolerance: You don't think Catholic organizations should supply contraceptive coverage? Fine. You're gonna pay for it anyway. You don't approve of homosexual marriage? O.K.. You can have your opinion, but you'd better not share it or you'll be fined. You don't want unchecked illegal immigration? Too bad, because if you say that on record, you will be branded a racist.

Now apply that to the Church. You believe in moral sin? You're preconciliar. You actually obey Humanae Vitae? You're preconciliar. You won't sway and clap your hands at Mass? You're preconciliar. What? You're preconciliar? Sorry, you can't teach CCD. We don't want you on the parish council either. I guess you can come to Mass, but please sit in the back, so no one will see you. You want your kids to receive Communion kneeling? On the tongue? Sorry, they can't receive their First Communion at this parish. You want a Traditional Latin Nuptial Mass? Good luck. You believe in Purgatory? What kind of pharisee are you anyway? We're the tolerant and loving people of God here in this parish.

A young priest once told me something I'll never forget: There is no one as inflexible and entrenched as a rigid liberal.

Joseph Johnson said...

Gosh! That's the first picture of Fr. Kung that I've ever seen with him wearing some kind of clerical dress! He usually is seen wearing coat and tie, a la Fr. Richard McBrien of the "National 'Catholic' Distorter." Given the light blue color (including the blue pom of what must be his biretta in the foreground) this must be some kind of academic clerical dress. Does anyone know the significance of the color (is it Marian?)?

Henry Edwards said...

Speak for yourself. I know a good many older Catholics who initially embraced the openness of Vatican II and the vernacular prior to the Novus Ordo, but never abandoned ANY of the tenets of their faith and fidelity formed by pre-conciliar devotions and liturgy nor drank the "spirit" of the 60s and 70s.

ytc said...

You know, I can't find a SINGLE picture of Kung celebrating Mass, or even attending one. That is truly sad.

rcg said...

For the thousandth time: why do they stay? Do they believe that starting another church would be invalid? IF that is the case, then why do they rebel? It is confusing. It is also confusing as to WHY people pay serious attention to them.

Short of Excommunication isn't here some sort of Bull that can declare them as not valid as teachers or promulgators of doctrine?

John Nolan said...

Is that Kung? It looks like he has joined the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest, a traditional community in full communion with Rome.

The Tablet, aka The Bitter Pill or The Suppository, is the English equivalent of your National Catholic Reporter. It has not been remotely Catholic since the 1960s.

Kung's latest statements indicate that he is a sedevacantist, yet he is a priest in good standing, whereas the SSPX, who are orthodox to a fault, are treated with suspicion and even called neo-schismatic in some quarters. As long as the institutional Church continues to tolerate open dissidence and heresy, the SSPX is best advised to have nothing to do with it. I'm sorry to have to say this, but it's true. It will take at least another hundred years before the damage caused by V2 and Paul VI can be put right.

Unknown said...

Be rest assured that Father Kung has not joined the ICRSS. In fact, this is a photo of him in academic dress (philosophy) at The Open University. What you see in front with the pom is his modified mortar board.

There is nothing ecclesiastical about his attire. It is simply the style of academic dress at the University.

Nothing to be alarmed about. Other than the obvious.

Hammer of Fascists said...

Two observations:

1) Re your comment "I also touched on the rebellion it caused in the Church in 1968 from which we have yet to fully recover but there isn't the same antipathy about Humanae Vitae today amongst practicing Catholics as there was in 1968 amongst pre-Vatican II Catholics embracing the post Vatican II "spirit" of Catholicism . . ."

I fear that this is overly optimistic. We have yet to fully recover from it because we have yet to recover from it at all. The reason there's no antipathy towards HV is that it's simply ignored by a huge majority of self-identified Catholics, facilitated by the near silence on the topic in homilies (and, I would guess, a lot of RCIA and pre-Cana classes). I would guess further that most of the genuine anger (or better term would be rage) still displayed toward HV would be from people--many of them ordained or "Religious"--of the '60s generation (who, ironically, have taken vows of celibacy and who are far too old to reproduce anyway).

2) "Hans Küng is appealing to priests and churchgoers to confront the Catholic hierarchy, which he says is corrupt, lacking credibility and apathetic to the real concerns of the church’s members." The delicious irony here is that when you put it in just these terms, Hans Kung and I are in agreement. I think the only difference is in how we would characterize "church's members." Hans Kung probably refers to all self-identifying "Catholics," regardless of whatever modernist or other heresies they hold to, while I mean the term to refer to those who (vis-a-vis Mystici Corporis) profess the faith as handed down and defined over the centuries.

Anonymous 50000b said...

It seems to become clearer and clearer that the Missal of Paul VI is not only a manufactured product, but a Catholic-protestant hybrid worship service. The omission of St Michael, John the Baptist, and Ss Peter and Paul in the confiteor, which itself is made optional as most parishes use "form c" exclusively, is exhibit A. Exhibit B is the addition of the protestant part of the Our Father. Exhibit C is that the priest now faces the people, as a presider, a performer, a protestant concept, rather than the Catholic concept of the priest being a celebrant who leads the people in prayer.

I think the Paul VI missal needs to be supressed, and for the OF we need to go back to the last real organic revision of the Catholic Mass, the vernacular Vatican II missal of 1965. It can be adapted to fit the new Lectionary, and new instructions can be added to keep more Latin instead of all vernacular, but it should be brought back as the OF. May the magestarium implement it this coming year.

Marc said...

Amon 50000b, I appreciate your sentiment and agree with your point, but you are incorrect that the doxology at the end of the Our Father is in any way "Protestant".

If go into the history more, but I'm posting from an iPhone. I suggest you research the history for yourself.

Aside from that error, again, your post is a good one. I just think that when we make our arguments against the Novus Ordo, it is of utmost importance to do so with accuracy as those who will argue against us will not be so marred to the use of actual facts.


Marc said...

Here's a link discussing the history of the Doxology for the Our Father:

ytc said...

I would submit that while the Pater doxology is solidly rooted in ancient Catholic practice, it cannot be called part of the _tradition_ of the Roman Rite. After all, tradition means that which is handed on, and the Pater doxology as currently used in the OF is nothing but a resurrection of an old practice which had precisely zero use in Roman liturgy for a thousand years or more.

Henry Edwards said...

Anon 5000b,

There was nothing "organic" about the development of the 1965 Ordo Missae. Although understood by many at the time as the final liturgical fruit of Vatican II, according to the Card. Antonelli account, it was the result of hasty secret planning and fiat decisions summarily announced to (but not voted upon by) the Bugnini Consilium, and was intended by them as merely a stalking horse for the Novus Ordo that was already far advanced in planning, but unknown outside a tiny circle. This is not how organic development has taken place in the Church.

No, as a legitimate basis for organic development, the Church would have to go to back at least to the 1962 missal, which itself bears a good many marks of the same folks who were active players throughout the 1960s.

Marc said...

ytc, That is an excellent distinction. I could agree the Pater Doxology is not part of the organic development of the Roman Rite. It is likewise not Protestant.

It is, though, proper to the liturgical tradition of the East where the priest typically adds the Doxology after all recite the Our Father.

So, my point is it is certainly Catholic. Although, as you pointed out, it is not Roman. Part of the problem with the modern Roman Rite, I would argue is a misappropriation of liturgical traditions from the Eastern Rites: the Doxology, (arguably) the use of litanies, and standing for Communion. While the East and West share a common root going back to the beginning, the particular organic development of the rites should be respected. Frankly, the West's co-opting of Eastern tradition is disrespectful to both the West and the East.

ytc said...

Yes. There are many practices which can be called "ancient Catholic practices," but which we probably shouldn't dig up from the history books. "Old" does NOT mean traditional. A consistent practice of 300 years is far more traditional than a 1900 year old practice that was dropped and then resurrected after a millennium or more of disuse.

I think that, in part, the OF shows a certain contempt for authentic Roman heritage.

Unknown said...

I can't speak from a matter of liturgical accuracy as to whether or not the doxology is Roman Catholic or Protestant and thank you for your astute clarification. But as a matter or practice I can tell you growing up in Catholic New Orleans I can clearly remember the first time my public high school football team gathered to say the Our Father in the 1980s. You could easily identify the Protestants as they continued while all of us Catholics looked around and wondered what they were saying. Shortly after it was added to (or noticed in) the Liturgy and it was definitely associated with Protestantism.
God Bless, Chris

Gene said...

Interesting, Christopher. It reminds me of a phenomenon I noticed in my life as a prot minister. Although some protestant denominations cross themselves, it is rare to see it done even among those who acknowledge the practice. But, whenever I performed a wedding or funeral, I always began, "In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit...." You could always pick out the Catholics in attendance because they all reflexively crossed themselves. Amen!

John Nolan said...

I would agree with those who maintain that the Pauline missal is truly a Novus Ordo rather than a revision of the pre-existing Roman Rite, although when it was promulgated it was deemed to have superseded the Tridentine Mass, although not the older Uses which Trent had allowed to continue. The Carmelites, for example, did not adopt the NO until 1972. The fact that the present Pontiff has ruled that the older rite was not in fact superseded has very important implications; customarily revisions of the missal abrogate the existing versions, which is precisely what has happened with the Pauline missal (1975 and 2000).

That it is a liturgy 'fabricated' by a committee is a bit of a red herring; the Dominican Rite was produced by a committee in the mid-thirteenth century and drew on various local Uses in France and elsewhere. Also, what many people find objectionable concerning the NO (versus populum, Communion standing and in the hand, women in the sanctuary, dreadful music, ad-libbing, sloppy ars celebrandi, and yes, the over-use of the vernacular) are not intrinsic to the rite itself, which should be judged on its own merits. If it is then found wanting, then by all means avail yourself of the EF.

If the reformers had left the Roman Canon intact, said secretly in Latin with the liturgical gestures proper to it, not messed in a totally unhistorical way with the penitential and Communion rites, and kept the Suscipe Sancta Trinitas at the Offertory, then the NO might just be considered as a development of the Roman Rite.

Marc said...

Of course, John Nolan, if the reformers had done as you suggested in your final paragraph, just how "novus" would the Novus Ordo be?

John Nolan said...

The head on the 'sculpture' in the photograph bears a distinct resemblance to Benito Mussolini.

Carolyn said...

"...what one might call the modern anti-pope and who some say is going senile of the fumes of the spirit of Vatican II that still linger like cobwebs in his brain, Father Hans Kung..."

Best description of Kung I've ever read! Hilarious. Haven't laughed so hard since the last time Joe Biden said something. Thanks.