Marco Tosatti — The Book on Celibacy: Shall Parolin Open an Inquest?

MARCOTOSATTI.COM

by Marco Tosatti

January 18, 2020

Authorized English translation by Giuseppe Pellegrino

Dear readers of Stilum Curiae,

After the visit [on Friday evening, January 17] of Cardinal Robert Sarah to Benedict XVI, and his declarations [on Twitter], the same “Monsignor X” who wrote us a few days ago has offered us another intervention. He appears justly indignant at what is happening in the Vatican, and in particular among the journalists of the Vatican court. And he makes an interesting proposal….

§§§

“Because of the incessant, nauseating, and untrue controversies that have never stopped since the beginning of the week concerning the book “From The Depths of Our Hearts,” this evening [Friday, January 17, 2020] I met with Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. +RS. With Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, we have been able to certify that there is no misunderstanding between us. I left very happy, full of peace and courage from this beautiful audience. +RS”

Friends of Stilum Curiae,

who was responsible for the this attempt to harm Cardinal Sarah and Benedict XVI? I pray you take note of the expression used by Cardinal Sarah to connote the facts:

“Incessant, nauseating and untrue.”

I realize that it will be a waste of time, as was true with the Dubia and the Correctio Filialis, but do we want to call for an investigation?

Shall we ask Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin to create an Investigative Commission that will shed light on an affair that has sought to defame the reputation of the Pope Emeritus and a most eminent Cardinal?

The expression of Sarah – “nauseating” – struck me. Something nauseating – that is, which provokes nausea and generates a sense of repulsion, disgust, and contempt – is attributed to an immoral person, who therefore arouses a feeling of repulsion.

Since we know how much Cardinal Sarah weighs his words, it is now indispensable to identify this immoral person who is going around in the Vatican, in the Catholic Church.

It will not be easy to find this exact “specific” immoral person, given the number and variety of immoral people who are behind the Sacred Walls of the Vatican, disguised as priests or as expert journalists of communications services, rather than experts in theology or liturgy.

But someone who has experience in such investigations ought to be able to identify him. They could entrust the oversight of this Investigative Commission to Cardinal Herranz, the former president of the Herranz Commission, which was convened by Benedict XVI to shed light on Vatileaks I, which in 2012 discovered intricacies and conspiracies, identified names and reported them secretly to Pope Benedict XVI, a few days prior to February 11, 2013. Then the Pope resigned.

And it was Don Georg Gänswein, first and personally, who hurried – surprisingly – to explain that the resignation was a decision that had been made by Pope Benedict for at least a year!!

I propose a hypothesis: that what has just happened in the matter of the Sarah – Benedict book is connected by an umbilical cord to what happened in 2012.

In short: Benedict XVI had to definitively disappear from history – and the same is true today. Because Benedict XVI was restoring the Church of Christ, which was instead destroyed, and continues to be destroyed.

Signed,

Monsignor X

See the Original at MARCOTOSATTI.COM

IL LIBRO SUL CELIBATO. PROPOSTA A PAROLIN: APRA UN’INDAGINE.

Josquin de Prés: Miserere mei Deus

Part and parcel of remaining a faithful Catholic, is learning to appreciate the treasures with which our Holy Faith has been enriched throughout the centuries by Faithful Catholics. Josquin de Prés, court composer for the Popes, was one of the first to experiment with polyphony. He lived and flourished at about the time of Christopher Columbus. In this beautiful but short piece, written for the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, the Choir sings a capella, that is in the style of the Sistine Chapel, without instrumental accompaniment. The piece, Miserere mei Deus, is one of the penitential psalms.

Every Day 8 Christians are killed throughout the world

LAVERITA.INFO

According to Open Doors 260 Million Christians were persecuted for their faith last year. From the lands of Islam to North Korea violence and abuse of Christians. And in China they tear down Cross to make way for Video Surveillance Cameras.

by Irene Cosul Cuffaro

Authorized English translation by FromRome.Info

OGNI GIORNO NEL MONDO SONO UCCISI 8 CRISTIANI

January 15, 2020 Edition, p. 10: The persecutions are unending for Christians throughout the world, indeed, they are on the increase. The cries of alarm are being heard at Open Doors, a Christian Missionary Association which monitors the violence, the harassment and the discrimination suffered by the faithful, and which publishes each year the World Watch List, which classifies the top 50 countries where the oppression of Christians is the highest.  The data reported from Nov. 1, 2018 to Oct. 31, 2019, speaks for itself:  260 million persecuted Christians in just the top 50 countries, up from 245 million in the previous year. In practice, 1 out of every 8 Christians is enduring “high” levels of persecution on account of their faith.

IMG_20200118_125806466

At the top of the list of shame is the dictatorship of North Korea, where between 50,000 and 70,000 Catholics are currently being detained in concentration camps.

Even though the murders of Christians have diminished last year, from 4, 305 to 2,983 – on average 8 Christians a day – there has been a noticeable increase of “pressure” placed upon Christians, in the form of harassment, assaults, kidnappings, imprisonment without due process, churches closed or attacked, rapes and sexual abuse.

At the top of the World Watch list, since 2002, one finds North Korea where according to estimates there are between 50 and 70 thousand Christians being detained in concentration camps. The second or third place in list list of infamy go to Afghanistan and Somalia, followed by Libya, though in a different context from that of Pyongyang. The persecution in these three countries is in fact tied to their political instability and the absence of a central government. There, the faithful, especially when they convert from Islam, risk death if discovered.

In fifth place, is Pakistan, where 95% of the population is Muslim and discrimination against Christians begins in elementary school. This nation is infamous, among other things, for the case of Asia Bibi, the Christian mother of 5 daughters, who was accused in 2009 of blasphemy against Mohammad and condemned to death, from which she was spared thanks to clamorous international appeals, and who has now taken refuge in Canada after being threatened with death by the Islamic extremists of Tehreek-e-Labbaik who called for her execution, following her victory on appeal in 2008. Today, in her former homeland, there are more than 20 Christians detained on accusations of blasphemy.

We can omit to mention Sri Lanka, which is on the list for a singular incident, which raised its classification from 40th place to 30th: the mass terrorist attack on Easter Day, April 21, 2019, when 7 Jihadis from National Thowheeth jama-ath struck in a series of attacks 4 luxury hotels and a residential complex, killing 253 persons and injuring 500.

As much as regards Nigeria, the most recent slaughter of Christians occurred last month, when a group of Jihadis, affiliated with Isis, slaughtered 11 men in revenge for the death of the “caliph” of the so-called “Islamic State”, Abu Bakr-al-Baghdadi, killed last October in Syria.  The report from Open Doors shows, however, that the most lethal group in the country are the Muslim Fulani herdsmen: April 14th last, in the village of Numa, one of them made a disturbance during a celebration of Baptism by massacring all 17 participants.  The group is defined in the report of Open Doors as six times more lethal than the throat-cutting Boko Haram.

The report affirms, in addition, on sexual violence. The data on sexual abuse and rape reveal, in the period in question, 8,537 cases, to which should be added at least 630 forced marriages.  Moreover, the numbers are likely to be decidedly higher, seeing that persecution of this kind is usually perpetrated at home, rendering it difficult to quantify, as the Director of Open Doors, Cristian Nani explains: “Christian women raped and violated while parents or husbands are constrained to listen to their cries on a telephone. The brutality of the phenomenon of sexual abuse and of forced marriages is disheartening.   And it is only the tip of the iceberg which is revealing itself little by little. If it can exist hidden away in a country like Italy, just imagine what it is like in countries where Christians are considered second class citizens.”

But the repression of Christians also occurs in regard to their places of worship. To get an idea, consider the statistic of surging church closures, attacks and of the destruction of church and church-related properties like schools and hospitals: 9,488 ( as compared to 1,847 in the preceding year), of which more than 5,500 were in China alone, where the number of faithful Christians is growing rapidly, as is already near to 90 million.

Peking has put into place a system to monitor believers in an ever more restrictive manner, by the use of biometric technologies and artificial intelligence: on top of forbidding anyone less than 18 years of age to frequent places of Christian worship, the Chinese authorities have imposed upon some churches the requirement of removing the Crosses in front of the buildings and of installing systems of facial recognition, to which all the faithful must subject themselves.

SOURCE: OGNI GIORNO NEL MONDO SONO UCCISI 8 CRISTIANI

CREDITS: Photos by FromRome.Info of the original paper copy of the Article, made with the gracious permission of La Verità.

2 Orthodox Bishops slain in attempting to liberate Catholic Priest

Report by Agenzia Fides

January 15, 20202 A. D., Aleppo, Syria: They died as martyrs, killed in December 2016 by a gang of militiamen who had held them hostage for years. This is apparently the fate of the two Archbishops of Aleppo, the Greek Orthodox Boulos Yazigi and the Orthodox Syrian Mar Gregorios Yohanna Ibrahim, who disappeared on April 22 without leaving a trace, in the area between the Syrian metropolis and the border with Turkey. An investigation supports this theory carried out by an investigation team led by Mansur Salib, a Syrian researcher residing in the United States, and disseminated through the digital platform medium.com, a new social media connected to Twitter. According to the authors of the investigation, the militants of Nour al-Din al-Zenki, an independent group involved in the Syrian conflict, financed and armed during the conflict by both Saudi Arabia and the USA, killed the two.

The investigation traces the story, focusing on details considered useful to reconstruct its dynamics. According to the authors, on April 22, 2013 the two Archbishops had left Aleppo aboard a Toyota pick-up truck, driven by Fatha ‘Allah Kabboud, with the intention of going to deal with the release of two priests, Armenian Catholic Michael Kayyal and Greek Orthodox Maher Mahfouz, previously kidnapped by anti-Assad jihadist groups who then controlled the territories east of the Syrian metropolis. Mar Gregorios and Boulos Yazigi, dressed in civilian clothes, fell into what the reconstruction presents as a real trap. The car in which the two metropolitans of Aleppo were traveling was blocked by the group of kidnappers, and the driver Fatha’ Allah Kabboud, a Latin-rite Catholic, father of three children, was shot dead in the head. The kidnapping was not claimed by any group.

In the following months and years, rumors and announcements about their upcoming release were filtered around the case on several occasions, which then turned out to be unfounded.

The investigation now published on medium.com hints at the involvement in the kidnapping of characters linked to MIT (Turkish intelligence service), claiming that the kidnapping and detention occurred in areas that at that time became a “receptacle for foreign secret services”, where they could hardly have operated without the support of “ordinary terrorists”.

The issue of the disappearance of the two metropolitans was marked by misdirections and false and misleading information, such as that which a few days after their kidnapping had said they were released and were heading towards the Syrian Orthodox cathedral of Aleppo, where a multitude of Aleppo Christians gathered in vain to await them.

The reconstruction reports information already known, along with allegations exposed without objective findings, including the hint that George Sabra, a Christian leader who has always been close to opposition groups to the government of Damascus, is also involved in the kidnapping of the two Metropolitans. The hypothesis that the perpetrators of the kidnapping aimed to force the two metropolitans to convert to Islam, to fuel fears and despair among the local Christian communities, is also highlighted.

The most relevant witness among those mentioned in the report seems to be Yassir Muhdi, presented as one of the jailers of the two bishops, who was later captured by Syrian forces. “The official investigation” acknowledges the dossier “is not yet complete, because it was not possible to find the mortal remains of the two ecclesiastics”. Among other things, the reconstruction claims – by presenting blurred clues or by aggregating information without objective evidence – that the two Archbishops were tortured, and that one of them, in 2015, was in a health facility in Antioch, the Antakya Devlet Hastanesi, in the Turkish province of Hatay. In the final section, the investigation claims that the two bishops were allegedly killed and buried in an unspecified place in December 2016, while areas east of Aleppo were about to be recaptured by the Syrian army.

In conclusion, the investigation published on medium.com may be useful to clarify details of the dynamics of the kidnapping and the early stages of the segregation of the two metropolitans, but in many passages it does not seem to provide certain elements useful to definitively clarify what was the fate of Boulos Yazigi and Mar Gregorios Yohanna Ibrahim, Archbishops of the martyred city of Aleppo. (GV) (Agenzia Fides, 15/1/2020)

SOURCE: Fides.org

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ORDO MILITARIS CATHOLICUS

Official Statement from the Order

The members have been following this story for 3 years. And it is with great sadness that we learn this week that both priests and both Bishops have been slain by Islamic Jihadis. Our condolences with their families and religious communities.

 

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Petition President Trump to speak out for Pope Benedict’s care!

DON’T BE LIKE THE 3 OUT OF 4 WHO READ THIS
AND NEVER SIGN THE PETITION!

Petition to President Trump to advocate for the protection of all the elderly, including POPE BENEDICT XVI!

TEXT OF THE PETITION

As recent events at the Vatican have shown, the elderly and frail Pope Benedict is being housed in a facility where the man responsible, Archbishop Gänswein, is attacking his collaborators and claiming he did not do or say or approve what he did approve and say and do. We are concerned that this elderly man is being manipulated for political reasons, which is elder abuse. We are also concerned because of his fidelity to Catholic teaching, that he might be further victimized in the near future by members of Bergoglio’s government. We therefore ask President Trump to raise concern about this issue by issuing one tweet:

“I am concerned for the welfare of all the elderly and that they not be abused or manipulated, including Pope Benedict XVI. I urge all to take effective steps for their care!”

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TO SIGN THIS PETITION, GO TO: https://petitions.whitehouse.gov/petition/petition-president-trump-advocate-protection-all-elderly-including-pope-benedict-xvi

100,000 Signatures are needed to get the White House to act on the petition!

Please share this petition on all Social Media venues!

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May the Lord send an Angel of Deliverance to free Pope Benedict from prison!

LET US PRAY FOR OUR HOLY FATHER, POPE BENEDICT XVI!

By Br. Alexis Bugnolo

The Church has been there before. A despot ruling over the people of God who has imprisoned the Vicar of Christ.

I speak of Herod Agrippa I and Saint Peter the Apostle.

In those days the whole Church joined in prayer for the Pope and the Lord sent an Angel of Deliverance, Saint Michael the Archangel, who broke Peter out of prison.

Pope Benedict XVI is also imprisoned, in that he is manipulated and controlled by others who fear the power of the office which they know He still has, whether he realizes it or not. It is not for nothing, that Saint Michael the Archangel was appointed to be the Patron of the City of Rome. He has ever been active to defend the Pope, and even now summons God’s servants to the Eternal City to defend him. Let us join in prayer with this great Archangel for Pope Benedict’s liberty, safety and protection, against all the forces of darkness which are being conjured together at the Vatican.

And let us not only pray, but let us do something about it! For if we only pray, when we are able to do more than just pray, the Lord will condemn us for sloth.

As president of Ordo Militaris Inc., I personally ask each of you to join the Order by making a small monthly capital pledge or an investment. I want the Order to be able to offer Pope Benedict XVI our assistance in any need he has, but I cannot do that without your help!

And let us take confidence in the inspired word of God, which shows what happens to those who imprison Christ’s Vicar on Earth!

Saint Luke: Acts of the Apostles, Chapter 12

1] And at the same time, Herod the king stretched forth his hands, to afflict some of the church. [2] And he killed James, the brother of John, with the sword. [3] And seeing that it pleased the Jews, he proceeded to take up Peter also. Now it was in the days of the Azymes. [4] And when he had apprehended him, he cast him into prison, delivering him to four files of soldiers to be kept, intending, after the pasch, to bring him forth to the people. [5] Peter therefore was kept in prison. But prayer was made without ceasing by the church unto God for him.

[3] “Azymes”: The festival of the unleavened bread, or the pasch, which answers to our Easter.

[6] And when Herod would have brought him forth, the same night Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains: and the keepers before the door kept the prison. [7] And behold an angel of the Lord stood by him: and a light shined in the room: and he striking Peter on the side, raised him up, saying: Arise quickly. And the chains fell off from his hands. [8] And the angel said to him: Gird thyself, and put on thy sandals. And he did so. And he said to him: Cast thy garment about thee, and follow me. [9] And going out, he followed him, and he knew not that it was true which was done by the angel: but thought he saw a vision. [10] And passing through the first and the second ward, they came to the iron gate that leadeth to the city, which of itself opened to them. And going out, they passed on through one street: and immediately the angel departed from him.

[11] And Peter coming to himself, said: Now I know in very deed, that the Lord hath sent his angel, and hath delivered me out of the hand of Herod, and from all the expectation of the people of the Jews. [12] And considering, he came to the house of Mary the mother of John, who was surnamed Mark, where many were gathered together and praying. [13] And when he knocked at the door of the gate, a damsel came to hearken, whose name was Rhode. [14] And as soon as she knew Peter’s voice, she opened not the gate for joy, but running in she told that Peter stood before the gate. [15] But they said to her: Thou art mad. But she affirmed that it was so. Then said they: It is his angel.

[16] But Peter continued knocking. And when they had opened, they saw him, and were astonished. [17] But he beckoning to them with his hand to hold their peace, told how the Lord had brought him out of prison, and he said: Tell these things to James, and to the brethren. And going out, he went into another place. [18] Now when day was come, there was no small stir among the soldiers, what was become of Peter. [19] And when Herod had sought for him, and found him not; having examined the keepers, he commanded they should be put to death; and going down from Judea to Caesarea, he abode there. [20] And he was angry with the Tyrians and the Sidonians. But they with one accord came to him, and having gained Blastus, who was the king’s chamberlain, they desired peace, because their countries were nourished by him.

[21] And upon a day appointed, Herod being arrayed in kingly apparel, sat in the judgment seat, and made an oration to them. [22] And the people made acclamation, saying: It is the voice of a god, and not of a man. [23] And forthwith an angel of the Lord struck him, because he had not given the honour to God: and being eaten up by worms, he gave up the ghost. [24] But the word of the Lord increased and multiplied. [25] And Barnabas and Saul returned from Jerusalem, having fulfilled their ministry, taking with them John, who was surnamed Mark.

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The Bull of Pope Nicholas II: In Nomine Domini, April 13, 1059

Preface and Translation by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

After centuries of interference in the Election of the Roman Pontiff by the Emperors of Constantinople and of the Holy Roman Empire, by the military, by the Roman Nobility and by rogue Nobles of diverse parts of Italy, Pope Nicholas II decreed a historic Bull which restricted the right of election — which had from ancient times been vested by Saint Peter the Apostle in the whole Church of Rome, and subsequently to the clergy — to the Cardinal Bishops principally, and then to the other Cardinals, the rest of the Clergy and the Faithful of the Diocese of Rome.  This Bull led to the formation of the institutions which we know of today as the College of Cardinals and the Conclave. Due to its crucial importance in the history of the regulation of the election of the Roman Pontiff, the From Rome Blog here presents its own English translation of the Latin Text (which can be download in PDF — the authenticity of which I have presumed from internal criteria). — Following the translation, I will give a commentary.

In Nomine Domini

In the Name of Our Lord Jesus Christ, and Savior, in the One Thousand and Fifty-Ninth year from His Incarnation, in the month of April, in the twelfth indiction, with the sacrosant Gospels laid before Us, with the most Reverend and Blessed Pope Nicholas also presiding in the Patriarchàs Lateran Basilica, which is named the Constantinian: with the most Reverent Bishops, Abbots, Priests and Deacons sitting with him: the same Venerable Pontiff decreeing by Apostolic authority concerning the Election of the Supreme Pontiff, said:

Your Beatitude knows, most beloved Brother (Cardinals), and Co-Bishops, and it is also not hidden to inferior members ( of the clergy), that with the passing of Our predecessor, the divine Stephen, of good memory, how many adversities this Apostolic See, which I serve with God as my author, has born, and how many repeated hammers, and frequent blows, She has been subjected to through the brokers of simonaical heresy: so much, indeed, that the Column of the living God almost seemed to totter, and the net of the Fisherman, with the storms having swelled, would be driven into the depths of shipwreck to be submerged, wherefore if it please thy Brotherhood, We ought, with the God assisting, take care prudently that future cases do not occur, and this by Ecclesiastical statute, lest recurring — far be it — the evils prevail.

The Election of the Pope pertains, first of all, to the Cardinal Bishops, who serve also as Metropolitians, the to the Cardinal Clerics, and the rest of the Clergy, and the People, only proffer their consent to the election.

§1. On which account, having been instructed by Our predecessors, and by the authority of the other Holy Fathers, We decree, and establish, that with the passing of the Pontiff of this Catholic Roman Church, first of all, the Cardinal Bishops, treating most diligently together concerning the election, summon immediately the Cardinal Clerics of Christ; and in this manner let the rest of the Clergy, and the People approach to consent to the new election taking the greatest care beforehand, lest the deadly disease of venality insinuate itself by an occasion, and for that reason let the most religious men be the chief leaders in promoting the election of the Pontiff, but the rest be their followers.  Moreover, the certain and even legitimate order here of the election  is carefully considered, if it be gathered from having examined the diverse rules of the Fathers, or their deeds, and even that sentence of Blessed Leo, Our predecessor: “No reason permits, that there be had among Bishops, those who have neither been elected from the Clerics, nor requested by the common people, nor consecrated by the co-provincial Bishops with the judgement of the Metropolitans; but because the Apostolic See takes precedence to all other Churches throughout the earth, for that reason She also  can have over Her no Metropolitan, the Cardinal Bishops with out doubt serve instead as Metropolitans, who namely, proceed to consecrate the apex of the Apostolic brow, once elected as Bishop“.

The Pope ought to be elected from the womb of the Roman Church if one is found to be suitable, otherwise he is to be elected from another Church.

§2. Moreover, let him be elected from the very womb of the Church, if one is found to be suitable, and/or if one not be found in Her, let him be taken from another; with due honor being served, and reverence for Our beloved son, Henry, who is held as King at the present, and with God conceding hoped as the future Emperor, as We have already conceded to him, just as to the successors of him, who personally begged this right from this Apostolic See.

If the Pope cannot be elected in the City, because of obstacles,
he can be elected elsewhere by the Cardinals, and by others, though few, of whom (We spoke) above.

§3. Wherefore, if the perversity of depraved, and iniquitous men, so prevail, that a pure, sincere and free election cannot be held in the City, the Cardinal Bishops with the religious Clerics, and the Catholic laity, though few, obtain the right of power (ius potestatis) to elect the Pontiff of the Apostolic See, where it might be fitting.

If the elected Pope cannot be enthroned, by these men, here, on account of obstacles, nevertheless he is a true Pope, and can rule the Roman Church, and dispose of all Her faculties.

§4. Plainly, after the election has been completed, if there be a bellicose conflict, and/or if the struggle of any kind of men resists by the earnestness of wickedness, such that he, who has been elected, cannot prevail to be enthroned in the Apostolic See according to the custom, nevertheless, the elect obtains as the true Pope the authority to rule the Roman Church, and to dispose of all Her faculties, which Blessed Gregory, We know, did, before his own consecration.

The pope elected against the form of this Decree is to be punished, as this one was, with his supporters.

§5. On which account, if anyone has been elected, or even ordained, or enthroned, against this Decree of Ours promulgated by Synodal sentence, whether through sedition, and/or presumption, or any guile, let him be cast down by the Divine Authority, and that of the Holy Apostles, Peter and Paul, by a perpetual anathema with his promoters and supporters and followers as one separated from the thresholds of the Holy Church, just as the Anti-Christ, both an invader and destroyer of the whole of Christendom, and let no audience be given him over this, but let him be deposed from every ecclesiastical grade unto whatever was before his, without any objection made, to whom if anyone whatsoever adheres, and/or exhibits any kind of reverence as to the Pontiff, or presumes to defend him in anything, let him be abandoned by equal sentence, which if anyone shows himself to be a violator of this sentence of Our Holy Decree, and has tried to confound the Roman Church by his presumption, and to raise disturbance against this Statute, let him be damned by perpetual anathema and excommunication, and let him be reputed among the impious, who shall not rise again in judgement, let him know the wrath of the Omnipotent One against him, and that of the Holy Apostles, Peter and Paul, whose  Church he has presumed to fool, let him know a ravaging madness in this life and in the future; let his dwelling become deserted, and let there be no one who dwells in his tents:   let his sons be orphans, and his wife a widow, let him be shaken completely to madness, and may his sons go about begging, and be cast out of their dwellings, may the money-lender ravage all his substance, and may foreigner lay waste to his labors:  Let the whole world fight against him, and let all the other elements be against him, and may the merits of all the Saints resting above confound him.

For the observers of this Decree, the Pope prays for the grace of God and pardon for their sins.

§6. Moreover, let the grace of the Omnipotent One protect the observers of this Our decree, and let the authority of the Blessed Apostles, Peter and Paul absolve them from all the bonds of their sins.

COMMENTARY

NiccoloII
Pope Nicholas II

Oh the faith and zeal of the men of God of ages past! How shining their nobility of mind, how forthright their speech, how determined their mind, how strong their justice against all wickedness, how prudent in particulars, how unbending in ideals and purpose. Many a  Catholic reading of the Church in ages past has commented thus of our forebears in faith, who on account of the distance of the ages, we can assuredly count among some of our relatives of old.

What makes them so different from our own age, is that with the passing of time, and the corruption of men, the mystical body of the Antichrist has grown up inside the Church, pretending to be one of the faithful, but deceiving all, to such an extent, that the mass and number of the wicked in the Church has reached critical stage and the likeness of the monster of iniquity is taking form inside the members of the Church long dead and separated from the vital sap of Our Lord, the True Vine of the Father.

We can see openly how less a corrupt age it was, by the few precepts to be had to govern a papal election. This was not because the age knew nothing of Law. The great legal works of the Emperor Justinian and the Roman Jurist Ulpian had long before been written and studied. No, it was the rarity of the boldness of demonic impiety, which is now common day and an every day manifestation, which made this first Papal Decree on the Election of the Popes so simple and direct.

Yet, in its simplicity it shows forth several important legal institutions and principles which would characterize papal law on the election of the Roman Pontiff for the next nearly thousand years. Let us examine them in their order of appearance in the Decree.

Three Conditions for the man Elected

The Ancient and Apostolic custom of the Church of Rome was ever that three conditions prevail for the election of a Roman Pontiff: his selection by the Clergy of the City, his approval by the faithful of the city, his consecration by the Metropolitian, or what we call the suburbican Bishops, of the ecclesiastical province: the Bishop who oversaw the dioceses immediately adjacent to Rome.

This custom was the orderly application of the Apostolic Right by which the Roman Pontiff was elected from the time of the Apostle Peter’s death, and may have been suggested by the Apostle St. Paul, who ministered in the City for a year or more before his own decapitation and martyrdom.

Pope Nicholas II by this decree modifies the ancient custom and restricts the discernment and selection of the one to be elected to the Cardinal Bishops. They are then to summon the other Cardinal Clergy, the rest of the clergy of the City and all the Faithful and ask for their consent.

No Elections in secret

The wisdom of this institution prevented the usurpation of the Church by foreigners, the election of men who were unknown to the local clergy, and or who did not enjoy an honest reputation among the faithful of the city. It also prevented simony — the offering of money for votes — to some extent, since you cannot bribe everyone, and without any obligation of proceeding in secret, the motivation for voting for this one or that, would certainly come out and quickly become known to all.

Respect for Tradition

Pope Nicholas shows his respect for the Apostolic right by quoted Pope Leo the Great, who explains the manner in which the election was conducted in his age, some five centuries before, when all the clergy has the right to vote, not just the Cardinals.

Preference for a Roman

To prevent foreign influence and contro and to guarantee not only the independence of the Church of Rome but that She have a pastor who saw himself as Her shepherd by innate ties and bonds, Pope Nicholas urges the election of a man born at Rome and Roman. This hearkens back to the Old Testament where God required that the people select one of their own kin to rule over them.

Flexibility in non essentials

Pope Nicholas II shows the sanity of the medieval mind, by allowing the election under special circumstances of necessity to be conducted outside the city. There was no fixed or prescribed place for the election, and this prevented it being controlled from beforehand, as well as from being prevented or impeded in its execution.

A Man is made pope by Election, not consecration or enthronement.

Here there is a principle which comes down from at least the time of Pope Gregory the Great, namely, that the man elected Pope, from that moment becomes the pope, even if he has not yet been consecrated a Bishop and even before he is enthroned in the Lateran Basilica (the Cathedral of Rome prior to the 14th century).

Grave Sanctions for those who transgress

Finally, Pope Nicholas II imposes the most grave and extreme sanctions upon those who transgress his Law on Elections: anathema, excommunication, reduction to the state in which he was prior to the election or usurpation. And this punishment is extended to all his promoters, supporters and followers.  A promoter is he who encouraged his candidacy, a supporter is he who voted for him, and a follower is he who joined his faction and vied that it prevail.

Just read n. 5 above, if you want to know how a usurper of the office of Pope should be treated for his crime. It makes you understand the moral gravity of the crime, a thing which a godless cleric has no understanding of.

Equity and Wisdom

In this Decree, one can see that Pope Nicholas II is trying to balance the different and disparate forces which were vying to control the election of the Roman Pontiff in his own age, and to place that election securely in the hands of those who could be more trusted to elect a man of God, without however, restricting the process so much as to prevent a man of God being elected. His emphasis that the holier members of the Church take a principle part in the election is a strong reminder to our own age of the folly of legislation which thinks that in the precise observance of minutiae one can guarantee holiness.  For this reason, Nicholas II promulgated a law which was to have a lasting effect on papal legislation for a thousand years. May God grant the clergy of Rome a similar wisdom and courage to execute their duties before God.

Criticism

Pope Nicholas II has gone to his reward, so I will allow myself to make one criticism of his papal law, and that is this: by restricting the right to vote to Bishops alone he imposed on the Roman Church the practice which prevailed in the provinces and in the Eastern Churches. This ended up helping the papacy, in one sense, to have men who had experience in government and fiscal management, but, on the other hand, tended to restrict candidates to the class of the landed gentry. It would end the habit of popular candidates, who sometimes, not always, in the past had been men who corrected the wrongs and injustice of the landed class and returned the Apostolic See to a more evangelical road.

What if, God forbid, Pope Benedict XVI dies while the Cardinal Electors remain fast with the Antipope?

I get a lot of questions from the Catholic Faithful who hold that Benedict is still the Pope because they simply follow the norm of Canon Law, unlike the precipitous and rash College of Cardinals who did not even implement canons 40 and 41 following the Declaratio of Pope Benedicct XVI on Feb. 11, 2013. For that reason, the Cardinals are in de facto schism from Christ and His Church, because they have violated canon 359 and Universi Dominici Gregis, n. 37, by electing another Pope when there was no legal sede vacante.

For that reason many of the faithful worry that the Petrine Succession might be abolished or lost, if when Benedict dies, the Cardinals do not convene in Conclave to elect his successor. This is because, the current papal law, published in an age in which there has not be an Anti-pope for nearly 500 years, does not address what is to happen if it should be that all the Cardinal Electors who are canonically valid (appointed by Popes John Paul II or Pope Benedict XVI) omit convening in Conclave after Benedict’s death.

I explained the theological, legal and historical reasons why this presents no fundamental problem in my Disputed Question: Whether, with all the Cardinal Electors defecting...

In such a case, whatever Cardinals, Archbishops, Bishops, Monsignori, Priests and Deacons, who are incardinated in the Diocese of Rome or at the Vatican, remain in communion with Benedict and assemble after his death, whomsoever they elect by a simply majority will be the Pope. In such an election the laity can also participate, since the Apostolic Right pertains to the whole Church. — If Arcibishop Vigano shows at such an assembly, he would probably be surely elected.

The Church desperately needs a popular candidate for the papacy, because, as in times prior to the law of Pope Nicholas II, In Nomine Domini, the Church is need of a dire correction in its pastoral objectives and needs a reformer who will return the Faith to Her rightful queenship of governance in the Church. Pope Benedict XVI by his evangelical prudence or by mistake, has providentially prepared, perhaps, the next papal election to proceed in just such a manner.

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