by Br. Alexis Bugnolo
Or, what Sherlock Holmes would say about the case of the Incongruous Renunciation
I have always been a fan of Sherlock Holmes, the fictional private detective in late Victorian England, created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, to popularize the new method of forensic investigation among the public police forces of his day.
As Sir Arthur writes in his Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes: “It has long been an axiom of mine that the little things are infinitely the most important”.
This maxim is actually something the great Scholastic Theologians of the Catholic Church would readily agree too, because they held that every individual effect is marked by its causes. Thus, every small detail about everything, says something about the causes of that detail. We have only to study the details to find the clues.
Here at the From Rome blog I have applied this method to the controversies over the vote rigging at the Conclave of 2013, which I have extensively examined. (You can see all the articles at The Chronology of Reports about “Team Bergoglio”), and to those about Benedict’s Renunciation (See the topical Index to Benedict’s Renunciation).
In this post, I want to share a lingering doubt I have about Benedict’s renunciation which I cannot shake, because it is seemingly confirmed by a host of details which have been overlooked by everyone, but which all point to the same conclusion, namely Benedict’s disgust with the College of Cardinals, not just as men, but as an institution.
As as translator of not a few Papal Bulls and Latin texts, when I examined the Latin of the Declaration of Feb. 11, 2013, the first thing which struck me was the the phrase ab his quibus competit. This phrase stuck me, because in Latin, which is a Language which is eminently laconic, it is a lot easier to write ab Cardinalibus electoribus. Why say, that the new supreme pontiff is to be elected by those who are competent to do so, and not by the Cardinal electors?
This question grows with a sense of significance, when you realize that Pope Benedict, according to the testimony of Archbishop Gänswein, wrote the text himself. And even more so, when you consider he wrote this text to be read out in the presence of the Cardinals themselves! In the refined halls of power, such a statement is much more than a faux paux, it is a positive insult and reproof. It is as if he is saying that the Cardinal Electors are not competent to elect a supreme pontiff. It is even more like saying, that his successor will not be elected by Cardinals at all!
This one small detail is something over which Sherlock Holmes would have had a panic attack of brain storming, because it is so incongruous of a statement to make in such a situation as a papal resignation, that it has to have causes which are not yet so obvious but which are crucial to understanding what happened and why it happened and what it all means.
I get a lot of guff and criticism for my speculations at this blog, mostly from those who do not appreciate the forensic method or the power of observation. As a trained anthropologist I understand why they do not understand and I understand why they are wrong in being oblivious to small facts. I know from the history of Archeology that entire theories of explanation of ancient, long lost cultures, were over turned by the finding of a single artifact, or a common artifact in a bizarre position or location. So I know professionally, that the methodology of Sherlock Holmes is not a fictional fantasy, but a real life powerful method of investigation and discovery.
If you find one anomaly, look for others
A single anomaly is hard to interpret, because as the Scholastics say, the individual which is the sole member of its species cannot be understood in itself. This means that when you find one anomaly, you need to look for more evidence and try to seek its causes. Other anomalies are the most important things to find, because then they establish a network of causes which can reveal the true meaning behind each anomaly. This is because it is harder to hide something in everything, than in a single thing.
The second anomaly which I noticed as translator of the Declaratio is that the Vatican had falsified all the vernacular translations. I reported this in the Article, The Vatican has known all along that Benedict’s Renunciation was invalid as written, and here is the proof. A brief summary translation of which, can be found in Italian at ChiesaRomana.info.
The obvious inference is that those who came into power after Benedict’s renunciation were trying to hide the evidence. But the less obvious inference is that Benedict wrote a renunciation which was obviously invalid and they were trying to hide the obviousness of it. And from that we can safely infer that there was a conflict between Benedict and whom he knew or suspected would come into power after his resignation. This final inference supports an understanding of the first anomaly, that Benedict was calling the Cardinal electors incompetent to elect a supreme pontiff.
This leads to an understanding which like a key can be used to decode the Declaratio. Now it is clear why Benedict calls himself the Successor of Saint Peter, but calls the one to be elected the new Supreme Pontiff. “Supreme” smacks of dictatorship and thus points to a Peronist. We can be certain that Benedict knew that Bergoglio was going to be elected because Bergoglio was the leading candidate in the previous conclave, and because Benedict was elected in opposition to Bergoglio. That opposition having crumbled in the College of Cardinals, it was obvious who would prevail. Benedict also as Pope had the resources of the Vatican spy network so he probably always knew what Bergoglio was up to prior to the conclave to suborn others and expand his power networks. The recent history of the European Bishops’ Conference, written by the the Bishop of St Gallen, shows that Pope John Paul II and Cardinal Ratzinger knew well of the existence of the St Gallen Group even before 1992. So we can be sure that Ratzinger maintained a dossier on them and kept his eye on them. We know now, that as Pope, most of his Pontificate was in preaching against the very errors, heresies and deviations which Bergoglio is now promoting. We know this by comparing what he was teaching with what Bergoglio is teaching, and it is a direct contradiction of it.
From all this, then, we can say decisively and with great certitude that the Declaratio was written to oppose the St Gallen Mafia and to lay down a maneuver against them. It was not a surrender, but it was made to look like a surrender. I explained my theory about this in the Article entitled, How Benedict has defeated “Francis”.
And because this was its primary motivation, for it to be successful Benedict had to decide from the beginning to be extremely discrete and divulge his intention with no one, not even Gänswein. I have long thought that this inference was improbable, but I recently obtained proof that Pope Benedict does not tell his private secretary everything, in the video prepared by Bavarian State TV, entitled, Ein Besuch bei Papst Benedikt XVI. em. Klein Bayern im Vatikan, which aired on January 3 in Germany. For in that video, Benedict reveals that there are things in his office of which he never told the Archbishop. And the Archbishop expresses both surprise and dismay.
The Crown of all Anomalies
It was only, however, when I took it upon myself to examine the Latin text with the eye of a Latin teacher correcting the homework of a student, that I found the crown of all anomalies. Yes, I found more than 40 grammatical, syntactical and stylistic errors. So many that it seemed to me impossible a pope could write such a thing. Either he was handed it to be signed, or he wrote it in haste, or he intentionally made it sloppy Latin to conceal something from obvious view. For, if you have ever watched British TV, and were a fan of Doctor Who, then you know, that the best place to hide a key is on a wall designed to hang dozens of keys, for there you can not only hide it in plain view, but hide it in such a way that it cannot be found or stolen.
And thus I was led to infer that Benedict was hiding something in the text, something more than just an invalid resignation of ministerium instead of munus. So I re-read the text and looked for anomalies, and now I wish to speak openly of what I found, of which I did not speak openly before in my Articles entitled, Clamorous Errors in the Latin Text of the Renunciation and A Nonsensical Act: What the Latin of the Renunciation really says.
And Benedict hid this anomaly right up front, in the place you would least expect to hide anything. I refer to the very first sentence of the Declaratio:
Non solum propter tres canonizationes ad hoc Consistorium vos convocavi, sed etiam ut vobis decisionem magni momenti pro Ecclesiae vita communicem.
As I said before, I have always thought it significant that Pope Benedict was promoting the study of Saint Bonaventure’s Scholastic Theology more and more during the later years of his Pontificate. That Doctor of the Church is an expert on the interpretation of textual statements. But that Doctor of the Church has his own way of using Latin. So being the translator of his Commentarii in Quatuor Libros Sententiarum, I just happened to have a great familiarity with the Latin of Bonaventure. And that made me see something of which I think no other has taken notice.
It is the word decisionem.
Latinists were focusing on the word immediately prior to this, vobis, because the Latin verb communicem takes an object with the preposition cum and thus requires vobiscum not vobis.
They then proceeded to simply fault Benedict for his poor choice of words, in writing decisionem instead of consilium. And in my critique I reported their opinions of this matter.
But what I did not report is my shock at the seeing the word decisionem, because in the writings of Bonaventure this word always means a “cutting off”, and has the sense of an amputation or pruning, as is done to a vine. Recall that in Scripture, Our Lord Himself says that He has to occasionally prune His people to take away dead branches and promote regrowth and fruitfulness. If you know anything about Joseph Ratzinger, then you know that as a theologian he likes to weave discourses around the meanings of Biblical images and words. Thus, one is led to the conclusion that he chose decisionem for reasons more significant than apparent.
If you combine that meaning with vobis and ignore the presumption that the latter was intended as vobiscum, the entire meaning of the sentence changes to something so radically unexpected, that only one having unraveled the chain of inferences and made a study of the anomalies in the text could possibly be prepared to accept that Benedict might indeed have meant that which the Latin actually says. Which is as follows:
Not only for the sake of three acts of canonizations, have I called you to this Consistory, but also for the sake of the life of the Church to communicate something of great importance: your being cut off.
As I just said, this reading seems incredible, but it explains all the anomalies which I have heretofore found in the text and in the history of the Renunciation. The purpose of the Declaratio was NOT to renounce the papal office, it was to Uproot the College of Cardinals as an institution from the Church, so as to save the Catholic Church from the complete Masonic infiltration of that institution.
We know now, seven years on, that the College of Cardinals has shown perfect compliance with the Freemasonic regime of Jorge Mario Bergoglio, and even its most conservative Cardinals have pledged unswerving loyalty to that regime. We also know that it has been a century long project of Freemasonry to infiltrate the College so as to take over the Catholic Church from the top down. We also know that Pope John Paul II and Benedict XVI were well informed by Saints and private revelations of the coming battle with the Anti-Church and False Prophet. Finally, we know that both collaborated decisively to renew the canonical penalties of excommunication against Freemasons in the Church (Declaration on Masonic Associations, Nov. 26 1983.) in forma specifica, that is, in the most solemn and authoritative manner of an express Papal approbation of a notice given the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, headed by the then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger.
It makes sense, then, if you know a key fort containing the greatest treasure of your kingdom is going to fall to the enemy, because of a complete treachery and rebellion of the military commanders holding it for you, the wisest council is to allow it to fall, without advising those commanders, while secretly removing the treasure, so that they are deceived in thinking they have triumphed and so that your removal of the treasure can be conducted in safety and during the confusion of their gleeful and exuberant seizing of the fort.
And this is what it seems Benedict did and intended to do. It also explains why Benedict acts the way he does and refuses to clarify his situation. Why he does not even take the Archbishop into his confidence. It also explains a lot of other things, which did not seem entirely anomalous before. For example, in his final year of pontificate, he made both Muller and Ganswein Archbishops, but not Cardinals, as if for his closest of friends he somehow did not want them to be members of that College.
If all these observations and inferences are correct, then one can with great probity conclude that it is the intention of Pope Benedict that after his earthly demise, that the Church of Rome, and not the College of Cardinals, who are held fast in a solidarity of dissent with Bergoglio, elect his successor: a thing about which I speculated about in my Article, Whether with all the Cardinal electors defecting, the Roman Church has the right to elect the Pope? And a thing of which even Pope John Paul II alludes in a most cryptic manner in the papal law on conclaves in his introduction, where he says, that it is a well established fact that a conclave of Cardinals is not necessary for a valid election of a Roman Pontiff (Universi Dominici Gregis, Introduction, paragraph 9).
Indeed, a study of the history of papal renunciations and the canons of the Church shows, that it was Pope John Paul II, in 1983, who by adding munus as the canonically required object of the verb “renounce” in canon 332 §2, actually created the canonical possibility of an invalid renunciation in the case of a pope who renounced something other than the petrine munus! A very small alteration, but one which not only prevented the office from being shared, according to the loony and heretical speculations of German theologians, but allowed a Roman Pontiff to give the appearance of a valid resignation, so as to deceive the forces of Freemasonry in the Church.
Now all this seems absurdly immoral, but in truth it is neither illegal nor illicit. For since the man who is the pope has the canonical right to renounce the petrine munus, it follows ex maiore that he has the moral right to renounce anything less than the munus. In cases of grave threat, he also has the moral right to dissimulate. Thus by renouncing the ministerium, not the munus, Pope Benedict posited an act which power hungry men without respect for the law or for the truth or for the person of the pope, would overlook during their rush to convene an invalid conclave. And thus their own fault and sin and haste would result in their canonical separation from the Church through an act of schism and usurpation. Yet, by renouncing the ministerium and not the munus, as required by Canon Law, Pope Benedict left sufficient evidence for all the Catholic faithful in the world to discover the truth, a thing of which he was confident they could do, because the quasi soul of the true Church is the Holy Ghost, the Lord and Inspirer of all truth, Who guides His faithful always to and in the truth.
In this way, both Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI have acted with great foresight and angelic prudence over the last 4 decades to enable that the Office of Saint Peter pass, not through the hands of men who have betrayed Christ en masse, but through the hands of the faithful of the Church of Rome, who precisely on account of their fidelity to the Roman Pontiff according to the norm of law, recognize what he has done and why he has done it.
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