Monday, November 16, 2015

TRADITIONAL CATHOLICS WITH A DIVORCE MENTALITY: AN OXYMORON NO?


When a man and a woman marry, they pledge and vow their life long commitment to love, honor and respect their partner for life, in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health.

There are no exceptions. For example, if the husband starts giving off-the-cuff remarks to others that shocks the wife, she still has to love, honor and respect her husband. And if the wife becomes a progressive, the husband has to continue to love, honor and respect his wife.

Once upon a time, all Catholics knew this and they also understood that it extended to the Church and our Holy Father and the bishops in union with him. They would never make contemptuous remarks about the pope even if he deserved it. They respected the pope as their father.

My how the "spirit" of Vatican II has infected even so-called traditional Catholics, what I have called faux-traditionalists as they know nothing of what traditional Catholicism is all about.

Many who make contemptuous comments about our Holy Father are converts from Protestantism. They've not completely converted to the fullness of the true faith and continue with a protestant mentality when it comes to the pope in particular and the clergy in general.

Thus when these faux traditionalists condemn progressives, it is a bit like the kettle calling the pot black.

Thus 
hits the nail on the head concerning the nature of true Catholicism and who is in charge! Clue: it ain't the laity.

I deeply appreciate Fr. Hunwicke's true conversion to the full communion of the true Faith. He is a former Anglican priest in England and is now a married Catholic priest of the Anglican Ordinariate. This, folks, is what true Catholicism and conversion to the true Church entails:

15 November 2015

Sedevacantism yet again

As a Man of Mercy, I do feel compassionate towards those Catholics who express to me anxiety that our present Holy Father may not be the lawful occupant of the See of S Peter. But I re-reiterate: no Catholic can with a good conscience decide for himself/herself that the See of Rome has become vacant through heresy. The Church, in some formal and corporate way, would need either to depose a heretical pope (thus, S Cajetan; John of S Thomas) or to declare that he had himself through heresy already forfeited the See (thus, S Bellarmine, Turrecremata). DIY is no good. All traditional theologians over the centuries who have considered the question (yes, there's nothing unCatholic in considering the question) are agreed about this. Forget it.

The practical aspects confirm the absurdity of Sedevacantism. Our Lord promised that his Church was indefectible. And the papacy is by Divine Institution a pretty central institution in the Church Militant. But, according to the Sedevacantists, the See of S Peter has been vacant for a very long time. I'm not quite sure for how long, because they disagree among themselves about when the vacancy began. If since the death of Ven Pius XII, 9 October 1958, then the See has been vacant now for more than 57 years! There is nothing remotely like that in Church History. What is the longest that the First See has ever been vacant? All Catholic sources except one would tell you that the record Interregnum came after the death of Clement IV in 1268, when the papacy was vacant for two years, nine months, and two days. (The Archdiocesan Church of Westminster, which curiously regards the Pisan Antipope Alexander V as a lawful pope and the next lawful pope after him as being Martin V, believes in an Interregnum of 7 years, from 1410 to 1417.)

But fifty seven years? Fifty seven years and counting?? You gotta be joking! And who would elect a pope now? There are no cardinals left from the reign of Pius XII; and how could an Ecumenical Council do so, since a Council cannot lawfully be convoked except by ... a Pope!

Francis is Pope and we need to be in Communion with him and that's the end of the matter. You may feel that there are problems in the Church of Today, and you may even be right to feel that (who am I to judge?), but this particular anti-traditional short-cut out of such problems is not an answer.

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

Is there anything in Cannon Law? Suppose a Pope has Alzheimer's ? Who declares the chair empty?

Marc said...

I don't think that this argument against sedevacantism is very compelling. The mere passage of time does not impact the validity of the sedevacantist hypothesis. Moreover, the circular argument about the necessity of a council is just that -- circular. The Great Western Schism illustrates that councils can depose a pope if there is a need for them to do so, and history proves that an ecumenical council can be called by someone other than the pope.

The strongest argument against sedevacantism rests in the idea that it does not matter if the pope is a heretic, as history also demonstrates. The sedevacantists rely on a revised version of history to support their error since they claim that no pope has been a heretic -- a false reading of the clear history.

The best argument, in my view, takes into account the heretic popes in the past. It also takes not of the fact that, in essence, the pope is the bishop of Rome. A bishop does not cease being a bishop by virtue of falling into heresy, a fact proven by all the heretic bishops in history. If a bishop does not lose his office for this, then it stands to reason that the bishop of Rome is not a special case. But, like other bishops, he could be judged as a heretic by a synod and deposed for heresy.

It is useless for an individual to determine of his own accord that the pope is a heretic and, therefore, no longer the pope. While we can surely take note of the pope's being a heretic in a colloquial sort of way, it is impossible to judge him formally to be a heretic.

Also, contra the sedevacantists, they place too much emphasis on the supposed infallibility of the pope since they apply that in an overly broad way. Personally, I don't understand how someone could believe so much in infallibility as to judge the pope to not be the pope when the much more logical (and historically mindful) conclusion is that the pope just wasn't infallible to begin with.

Joe Potillor said...

The college of cardinals, or in their absence, clergy from the diocese of Rome...no person can declare the see vacant, on that I agree

Julian Barkin said...

Father AJM,

This post could not have been more timely on your blog. Just this morning, you discussed the issue of Pope Francis' remarks and participation with regards to the Lutherans and Communion, providing again the TRUE rules for emergency provisions in the Church, and a great example of true pastoral "mercy" and application of those rules, which resulted in bringing that episcopal nun into full communion with the Church (those "Trads" would rather shoo her away or forbid the communion.)

Further, clearly under the text and words of these faux-traditionalists, they are clearly expressing sedevacantism and abandoning Holy Mother Church. Fr. Hunwicke has done an excellent job giving a brief one-minute apologetic against sedevacantism, and you've given a great analogy using marriage to express our relationship with the Church, and how we must love Her (and vice versa) inspite of our more "annoying" behaviours, though Holy Mother Church will ALWAYS be One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic. Clearly it seems these faux-traditionalists disobey Catholic teaching, by not believing in the Holy "mark" of the Church.

However, Father, one should also say that also included in your argument, and rightfully so, are those quasi-schismatics, who are not formally sedevacantist, but are approving of such obvious abandonment and insult of Holy Morher Church and the Pope in the form of Traditonalist movement, including the Society of St Pius X. While they may not say outright they don`t believe the current pope is valid, they contain the same ``divisive mentality" within, and without, as if he wasn`t valid. Whether you are "attached" to a particular chapel, or positively support the SSPX initiatives and mentality, doing so is also part and parcel of this faux-Traditonalist attitude.


It is simply a different kind of sedevacantism but under another guise. It is saying "yes there is a big jolly man in white who was elected by a bunch of men in funny hats, but he is not there and that "faux-Mass" thing is prone to Evil and can't do a thing to save the Church. That man is saying the stupidest stuff so he isn't the pope and I won't listen to what he says." Not listening to a word he says is just as bad as not acknowledging a pope is sitting in the Chair of St Peter. It is treating Francis or Popes X-Z as if they were invisible.

The thing is Fr. AJM, some of your commentators from the Lutheran issue posting have proved even further proof, verifying the exact words you say here. Two examples I provide:

1) Mark Thomas:

"... Therefore, please let's end the nonsense that Catholics should, for example, shun the SSPX. Let us stop the nonsense that Catholics commit sins whenever they attend chapels (whatever) where ordained Catholic priests, although whose status may be "irregular", offer Latin Masses.... I refuse to pay heed to the "we must shun the SSPX" (and additional "irregular" TLM Catholic groups) nonsense when our Popes have participated in Protestant liturgical services...."

2) Anonymous at 1024am;

"You know I just don't even know why I'm a Roman Catholic since we are all the same now? So in the end it turns out the Lutherans were right after all, I must admit this has finally driven me to the S.S.P.X. I held off as long as possible but I did it. I will let God be my judge and take it from there this papacy almost destroyed my faith, but the S.S.P.X. still holds on to the Holy Faith. I still wonder why Benedict the XVI stepped down?? I hope one day the Holy Ghost will give the Faith back to Rome. November 16, 2015 at 10:24 AM"

.... part 1

Julian Barkin said...

Seeing the support of movements and/or TLM only, it is clear that the sede ``mentality`` of separation or divorce ... No even better, pride and rebellion against Holy Mother Church and the Vicar of Christ, including a disagreement firm enough it assaults the Novus Ordo Mass, and the Church's power (even through weak men.,) is shared among these faux-Traditonalists,. These examples further back what Fr AJM is saying. We can even be "sede" in our mindsets, despite not being a purist sedevacantist.

Let me also warn all of you, if you think that being an SSPX supporter, adherent, or even a Sede and their parishes will guarantee pure orthodoxy, it will not. An acquaintance of my friend recently left the SSPX after witnessing: a pure sedevacantist being made the confirmation sponsor for someone; conditionally confirming people who already have had a valid and licit confirmation (violating the indelible mark and teachings of installation of the sacrament;) and a number of people were part of the SSPX resistance, who believe the SSPX will fall under Fellay and thus rebel even against their superiors. So if you think that the SSPX is the true heavenly church, and think it's better to be with them, you are in for a rude awakening.

Finally I must speak directly to you, Mark Thomas. Mark, what is happening with you lately? At first when I saw your commentary on the blogs, it was filled with hope, a defense of our holy Father and Holy Mother Church, with solid apologetics against those who chastised Her. Now you express solidarity with the SSPX in such a way that you are essentially approving being a part of them, and hence the ``divorced`` mentality Fr. AJM describes? Also in another blog I will not name for personal reasons, your comments on a post about France clearly demonstrated that the only hope for them (and in essence he church, or the Roman Rite/"Western" Church) was the Latin Mass. That position of TLM only, even with/without clarification insults the Novus Ordo and aligns with those who are the faux-traditionalists Fr AJM speaks of.

Mark, listen you do bring up points about prudence and respecting your position as Pope when you are elected, but please do not become hardened of heart and full of spiritual pride! I know it is harsh, and things are ramping up, but there is also signs of hope too if you look closely.

Also do not forget that even with weak ordinary men, including a repulsed tax collector, the evangelist Matthew, Christ built his Church and spread the Gospel. Our institutional heads, from the parish priest up to the Pope may fail us, and may be a bunch of fools in abandoning the Church's mission, but THE CHURCH will always prevail. see Matt 16:18.

...... Part 2

Julian Barkin said...

Also if I may add, MT, usually when someone gets a sudden shift in their usual behavior and thoughts (outside of drugs or disease) to a more darker alley, it tends to be because we've had a damaging spiritual experience (e.g. a parish pastor hurt us or someone close to us,) or while innocently coming to a new experience begin becoming exposed to less Christlike influences.

That or like many of us, we've become battle weary, and there is nothing like those moments of weakness where Satan loves to stick his tendrils into us, dosing us with the poison of Despair, the sister sin of Sloth/Acecia, digging itself deep through our spiritual spines with deeper sins up the chain like envy and anger (eg. I want a purist Church! How dare they have a valid licit TLM and I don't! Shame on that sinner...) until he digs into our spiritual brain, and we become like him full of pride and say "non serviam" to Christ and his church.

I am no saint, and yes I do fall at times too. We who are ``tuned in,`` or true believers, have seen the devastation around us, and we need to snap out of it. We need to stop letting the Devil dig into is and lead is to false carbon copies of the One True Faith and Church, and ask ever fervently that Christ deepens in us the theological virtues, especially Hope and Faith, and especially plead to the Holy Spirit for all its 7 gifts and to trust in its guidance of the Church.

Practically ... I say you should perhaps consider a heaping of Eucharistic adoration and a great bunch of chats with an orthodox mentor, one who isn't liberal, but certainly orthodox though not radically traditionalist. Someone who will challenge you and not be a yes man. We cannot do this journey alone. We are not alone. And we are always loved by the Father, and He wants our love in return freely.

MT. I will honestly keep you in my prayers, as when the best of us fall hard or lose hope, it in those moments we especially need courage and the support, both personal and Divine, to keep us spiritually balanced and focused on He, who is our Saviour upon the Cross.

Pax Tibi Christi.

Flavius Hesychius said...

Many who make contemptuous comments about our Holy Father are converts from Protestantism. They've not completely converted to the fullness of the true faith and continue with a protestant mentality when it comes to the pope in particular and the clergy in general.

Ah... there it is. I guess it's easy to write off anything people say, regardless of its validity. Then again, those cradle Catholics who formulated and implemented V2 did such a good job, didn't they? But, what do I know?

Δεν αμφιβάλλω που δε γνωριζω κανένα περί της πιστης ρωμαιοκαθολικης. κάτι τρέχει στα γύφτικα.

Anonymous said...

Cardinals, bishops, priests, lay people need to confront and correct Francis to his face. The need to call him out on every deliberately vague/misleading thing he says.

Where is this mean evil church that hates divorced people, gay people or any people for that matter. Where is that church?!

Does anyone truly believe that any Catholic in 2015 who is divorced and remarried and wants to receive Holy Communion doesn't walk right up stick their hand out and receive? Nobody gives a damn what the Church teaches anymore. We all know this. There was no need for a synod because everybody does whatever the hell they want. They feel no guilt. They don't care what the Church or any pope says.

I want to know Wh ere are these mean evil self centered priests who don't care about anybody but themselves? Where are these people? Where is this dogmatic church that only cares about doctrine and rules? That's a good one. Where is that church?

Those bishops at the synod should have either interrupted Francis' "seat of Moses speech" with one word ENOUGH! Francis is a bully and he will continue being a bully until a he is confronted and told NO. Somebody needs to do it and do it soon. It is long over do to publicly confront that man. After all what is he some medieval prince who we dare not oppose. Canon Law gives every Catholic the right to demand that the Catholic Faith be taught by her ministers.

Mark Thomas said...

Anonymous said..."Where is this mean evil church that hates divorced people, gay people or any people for that matter. Where is that church?!

"Does anyone truly believe that any Catholic in 2015 who is divorced and remarried and wants to receive Holy Communion doesn't walk right up stick their hand out and receive? I want to know Where are these mean evil self centered priests who don't care about anybody but themselves? Where are these people? Where is this dogmatic church that only cares about doctrine and rules? That's a good one. Where is that church?"

During the past 50+ years, I have never encountered that Church. Well, except in regard to Catholics who have supported the TLM and Holy Tradition. They have been treated like dirt by many within the Church.

I guess that His Holiness Pope Francis has had a very different experience as he appears to have encountered throughout the decades a cold, nasty, vicious, judgmental Church.

In fairness to Pope Francis, as Father Bergoglio, he was persecuted by his superiors and exiled for a time during his days in Argentina. Perhaps that explains somewhat his view of a Church that appeared vicious and judgmental to him.

Pax.

Mark Thomas

Mark Thomas said...

Julian Barkin said..."The thing is Fr. AJM, some of your commentators from the Lutheran issue posting have proved even further proof, verifying the exact words you say here. Two examples I provide:

1) Mark Thomas:

"... Therefore, please let's end the nonsense that Catholics should, for example, shun the SSPX. Let us stop the nonsense that Catholics commit sins whenever they attend chapels (whatever) where ordained Catholic priests, although whose status may be "irregular", offer Latin Masses.... I refuse to pay heed to the "we must shun the SSPX" (and additional "irregular" TLM Catholic groups) nonsense when our Popes have participated in Protestant liturgical services...."

Julian, how does my above remark "verify" Father McDonald's comments in question and/or the notion that I belong to "faux-traditionalists, they are clearly expressing sedevacantism and abandoning Holy Mother Church....or "those quasi-schismatics, who are not formally sedevacantist, but are approving of such obvious abandonment and insult of Holy Morher Church and the Pope in the form of Traditonalist movement..."

None of that reflects my beliefs about Holy Mother Church and His Holiness Pope Francis. None of that has anything to do with me.

I noted simply that it's preposterous that (as certain folks have espoused) we should shun, for example, the SSPX, a 100 percent Catholic society of priests, when our Popes, Cardinals, bishops and priests pray and/or worship with Protestants, Eastern Orthodox...and pray inside synagogues, and mosques.

His Holiness Pope Francis participated yesterday at a Lutheran liturgical service. Popes Saint John Paul II and Benedict XVI also attended the Lutheran church's services.

We have Churchmen who have bowed to priestesses to receiving "blessings."

But we should shun a 100 percent Catholic society of priests? Absurd.

Anyway, the Holy See has never condemned Her children who have attached themselves to SSPX chapels.

Pax.

Mark Thomas

Flavius Hesychius said...

As a random aside, what is it with the sedevacantists and SSPX faithful that demand I accept papal authority but they have no problem rejecting Vatican II or rejecting the authority of 'Bergoglio'?

Mark Thomas said...

Julian Barkin said..."Finally I must speak directly to you, Mark Thomas. Mark, what is happening with you lately? At first when I saw your commentary on the blogs, it was filled with hope, a defense of our holy Father and Holy Mother Church, with solid apologetics against those who chastised Her. Now you express solidarity with the SSPX in such a way that you are essentially approving being a part of them, and hence the ``divorced`` mentality Fr. AJM describes?"

I continue to defend Holy Mother Church and His Holiness Pope Francis. In regard to Pope Francis, I reject claims that he his unholy.

-----------------------------------------------------------

Julian said..."Also in another blog I will not name for personal reasons, your comments on a post about France clearly demonstrated that the only hope for them (and in essence he church, or the Roman Rite/"Western" Church) was the Latin Mass. That position of TLM only, even with/without clarification insults the Novus Ordo and aligns with those who are the faux-traditionalists Fr AJM speaks of."

Julian, I posted that same message that day to Father McDonald's blog. Now, to some specifics...

I have believed for decades that the TLM, as compared to the Novus Ordo, is richer in its expression of the Faith. I have every right to express that view.

Julian, the liturgical reform produced supposedly a reformed Mass (Novus Ordo) that represents an "improvement" over the TLM. Our Churchmen insist that as compared to the TLM, the Novus Ordo is the superior worship experience. That is the entire basis of the liturgical "reform" (revolution).

Why is it acceptable to critique the TLM but unacceptable and an "insult" to critique the Novus Ordo?

I could spend hours quoting Churchmen who have insisted that it was best for the Church to have swept aside the TLM.

Archbishop Chaput, for example, said of the Novus Ordo, as compared to the TLM, that "I find the Novus Ordo, properly celebrated, a much richer expression of worship."

That is what he had written in a 2010 A.D. edition of First Things.

http://www.firstthings.com/web-exclusives/2010/06/glorify-god-by-your-life

Julian, did Archbishop Chaput and, for that matter, countless Churchmen who have said the same, insult the TLM?

Again, that is the supposed outcome of the liturgical "reform." The liturgical "reform" has granted us supposedly a Mass superior in all ways to the TLM.

It is acceptable to believe that the Novus Ordo, as compared to the Traditional Roman Mass, provides us with a richer worship experience. However, it's unacceptable for a Catholic to believe that the opposite is true. Really?

Julian, I accept 100 percent that the Novus Ordo is a valid Mass. I accept that many holy Catholics, far holier than I, assist at Novus Ordo Masses. I assisted this past Eastern Sunday morning at a Novus Ordo Mass.

But Julian, I have every right to believe that the TLM offers a richer expression of worship than the Novus Ordo.

Finally, Julian, I absolutely believe that throughout the West, the only hope to rekindle (Latin Church) Catholicism rests upon the restoration of the Traditional Roman Mass to our parishes.

The Novus Ordo, which is very much imbued with a man-centered nature, has not demonstrated the ability to match the TLM's ability to fill Catholics with a powerful sense of Catholic identity.

As Pope Benedict XVI declared, in vast areas of the world, the Catholic Church faces virtual extinction. That is true certainly throughout the West.

Julian, I very much stand by decades-old belief that only the TLM can revive the Catholic Faith throughout the (Latin Church dominated) West.

Should His Holiness Pope Francis wish to accomplish a revival of the Church throughout the West, then he would spark a monumental spiritual revolution by offering the TLM regularly and unleashing the TLM throughout the Western Church.

Pax.

Mark Thomas

Anonymous said...

Mark Thomas said:

"During the past 50+ years, I have never encountered that Church. Well, except in regard to Catholics who have supported the TLM and Holy Tradition. They have been treated like dirt by many within the Church.:

I wholly endorse what Mark says here. I have experienced it myself and because I told a priest that I liked the TLM he said we were "Latin Mass nutters". That is a small example of what I have experienced, let alone the treatment from some priests when we knelt to receive communion on the tongue. There is good reason why many who support the TLM are bitter because they have experienced at least verbal excommunication from those in the Church who showed absolutely no charity whatsoever.


"I have believed for decades that the TLM, as compared to the Novus Ordo, is richer in its expression of the Faith. I have every right to express that view.:

I agree with this comment from Mark Thomas too. I attend the Novus Ordo Mass and know that it is valid but even said well it leaves me feeling a lack. I know I have fulfilled my Sunday obligation but it is lacking somehow. As a seminarian said to me a few months ago "It is not feeding the faithful".

"It is acceptable to believe that the Novus Ordo, as compared to the Traditional Roman Mass, provides us with a richer worship experience. However, it's unacceptable for a Catholic to believe that the opposite is true."

I have to agree with Mark's comment because I have come across the same thing. Not only that but we are often not allowed to have the TLM in a parish church but are sent to far flung chapels that nobody uses, despite the fact that parish churches stand empty most Sundays, some areas are not allowed to advertise the TLM either and in my diocese we are not allowed a Sunday Mass although every other group is catered for: Spanish, Korean, Samoan, Maori, other rites Masses. The only option to attend the TLM is the SSPX although I travel two hours to attend a diocesan Mass when I can.

Mark Thomas said...

I would like please to follow up on my response to Julian Barkin's charge that my belief that the TLM must be restored throughout the West (throughout the Western Church) should the West wish to rekindle the Faith.

Julian insisted that such a position "insults the Novus Ordo." I noted that I could spend hours reproducing comments from Churchmen who have praised the Novus Ordo as far superior in all ways spiritual to the TLM.

I began with Archbishop Chaput's declaration that compared to the Traditional Roman Mass, the Novus Ordo is a "much richer expression of worship."

To add to that, in 2011 A.D., Blase Cupich, then-bishop of Spokane, Washington, authored a three-part series entitled "The New Roman Missal — A Time of Renewal."

Here are a few remarks that then-Bishop Cupich offered in the regard to the Traditional Roman Mass:

-- "The people were reduced to passive attendance as silent spectators."

-- For the Faithful at TLMs, "the transforming power of the Eucharist was not the source of their spiritual lives."

-- The "old" Mass was incomprehensible to the "common" person.

-- Latin helped to make the Traditional Roman Mass "incomprehensible" to the common person.

-- Many rites from the "old" liturgy were incomprehensible as they reflected European court practices.

-- The TLM inspires the separation of the Faithful from the altar via literal barriers (altar rails).

-- The Novus Ordo is designed to allow people to gather around the altar. Therefore, new designs of church's during the post-Vatican II years have enhanced the liturgical lives of Catholics, according to then-Bishop Cupich.

-- The Novus Ordo reform has revived the Latin Church's authentic and ancient liturgical traditional.

-- The Novus Ordo Mass is a vast improvement over the "old" Mass.

-- The Novus Ordo liturgical reform is a tremendous success, according to then-Bishop Cupich.

That is the party line in regard to the liturgical "reform"

Julian, I ask again as to why our Churchmen permitted to insist the above but, at least according to you, it's an "insult" to the Novus Ordo when I, and others, declare that we believe that the TLM represents the "richer worship experience"?

Pax.

Mark Thomas

George said...


For some explanations on Papal infallibility, which is an issue which comes up in some of the comments from time to time, I provide the following links:



Papal-Infallibility1


Papal-Infallibility2

John Nolan said...

Reading the summary of Blase Cupich's views on the Novus Ordo, I am reminded of statements by Party apparatchiks of the Brezhnev years about the superiority of Marxism-Leninism.